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Morning Dew

Summary:
Did the battle scene at the end of Breaking Dawn leave you feeling cheated?
Were you expecting an epic fight and some well-deserved suffering?
Did Bella's perfect happiness get on your nerves? This is my alternate ending to Breaking Dawn.


Notes:
I don't know about you, but Breaking Dawn severely diminished my excitement about Twilight. I just didn't like the book much. The characters were all totally off, the plot was not well thought-through, and the writing made my eyes water. When the book finally advanced to the battle scene, I was exultant -- I thought that the story would finally take the right turn and amend for all the confusion from the beginning. But then nothing happened. SM later called it "strategy"... but I seriously see no connection between what happened in BD and The Merchant of Venice by Shakespeare. So I decided to test the waters myself, and see if I could do any better. That being said, I would like to remind you of two things: a) I am not an author. I know I'm not better than SM. I'm just a sixteen-year-old venting her frustration.
b) I don't mean to offend anyone who liked BD. Everyone's entitled to an own opinion. You can still enjoy this story if you did :) The story kicks off right where the Volturi are deciding whether or not to attack. Until then everything stays as it is -- if you need to refresh your memory, feel free to check Breaking Dawn (I had to do that quite a lot, especially in the beginning. I hope there are no contradictions. If you find any, however, please let me know). The italics in the beginning are straight from the book. Beta'ed by TRDancer from fanfiction.net


2. One on One

Rating 5/5   Word Count 2775   Review this Chapter

But even with all those tips and tricks I knew I had no chance. It was time for me to die.

Thankfully, I'd already acknowledged that fact.

---

The first person hit me hard.

I wasn't ready for his punch and reacted a millisecond too late. It made me stagger back against a tree.

"Don't move and we'll make this fast and painless," one of the vampires said. It was one I'd never seen before, an older looking man with shockingly white hair, like a ghost. He cocked his pale head to the side and inched closer, giving me time to prepare for his strike.

I spat at him. It hit him straight in the face.

He halted and wiped the venom away with disgust. "All right then, not fast and painless."

I snarled as he stooped, kicked off the ground, and sprang. My arms instinctively rose to protect my face, and my mind screamed at me to do something, anything to avoid being slaughtered by this ghost, but I was too resigned to react.

But at the last minute, something hurled against him before he could land on me —a tree trunk, I noted in surprise. I looked to the side.

I'd expected Zafrina, but it wasn't her. It was Emmett, looking ragged and deadbeat in his torn clothes and muddy hair. He was standing next to where a tree had once been, a tree that had been yanked out with roots and all. The snow was splattered with brown soil like drops of blood.

"Leave my lil' sis alone, will ya?" he jeered. He looked virtually delighted when two of the group of vampires stepped away from me to face him. He lifted an inviting finger, coaxing them to attack.

Horrorstruck, I watched the men pounce on my big brother. All three were soon wrestling on the ground in a whirl of gray cloaks and white limbs.

To my wonder I realized that I felt no fear for him. The long period of suppressed terror and stifling anxiety had made me numb. All I could do was stand still and keep my shield around the right people for as long as I could. Once I died, how many others would follow? Presumably all, sooner or later.

I felt that pain even through my numbness. The thought of my entire family dead weighed heavily on my heart. Carlisle, Esme, Emmett, Rosalie… and Edward. My only consolation was that I wouldn't stay behind.

The remainder of the attacking circle was still surrounding me. Only a fragment of a second had passed after Emmett's interruption. Now they were focused on me again.

I checked my shield for one last time. Everything seemed in order. I could offer a few seconds more of protection to my friends.

But before the man nearest to me could raise a hand, he and his companions were knocked to the ground. I stared wide-eyed as they were ripped apart by Zafrina, Garrett, Peter, and Charlotte.

Zafrina screamed at me. "Run, Bella! Hide in the forest!"

I opened my mouth to protest, but she cut me off. "No, Bella, you're no use to anyone dead! Stopping playing the martyr and get the hell out of here!"

Reluctantly, I left the scene. It felt cowardly and absolutely wrong, but I tried to push aside the guilt. I'd promised to stay back during the fight, and to stay alive as long as possible. I was doing the right thing by hiding.

Hiding like a coward, another voice in my mind said to me. Like someone afraid to die.

I shook my head away from the thoughts.

No one took any notice of me as I dashed past the big battle. The snow crunched under my feet as I ran, but the Volturi were too preoccupied to hear it. Indignantly, I refused to scan the faces of the crowd—I was too afraid to see something that would make me turn around again.

The forest around the clearing was thin at most places, especially now that there were no leaves, but there was one spot in the north-east that could offer enough cover to do as a hiding place. There was a big stone there that looked strangely out of place amongst the greenery. Edward had once told me that a glacier had carried it there.

Feeling more like a coward than ever, I ducked behind it and bent down to keep my whole self out of sight. Searching my surroundings, I found that no one had followed me there—yet, anyway. I knew the safety was short-lived, but at least it was there.

But the sounds of fighting irritated me. Why was I not allowed to join them? I longed to put my anger into physical energy. The extent of my fury was far greater than I could rein in. My mind and body felt ready to explode.

I tried to preoccupy my mind with logical thinking. I had questions that, although not nearly as interesting as fighting, needed answering. Where was Renesmee? Where was Edward? And where were the heads of the Volturi, the main source of our problems—Aro, Marcus, and Caius? I could hardly imagine them fighting alongside their guard. They were far too craven for that.

When the wondering finally grew over my head, I decided to wager a peek. Very, very carefully, I rose to my feet, keeping my back bent so I was still hidden behind the stone. Then, even more carefully, I rested my hand on the side and leaned over an inch—just enough to get a view of one half of the field.

Tensed in anticipation, I let my eyes roam over the many faces of the crowd. A weight lifted off my heart at each face I recognized: Carlisle, Esme, Rosalie, Kate, and Benjamin were all still on their feet. But where was the face I sought most of all? Where was Edward?

I tried to smother my panic. The other side of the clearing was hidden to me—he could easily be fighting there. Or he could have gone after Renesmee to make sure she was all right. He was a good fighter. He would stand until the end.

As my eyes feverishly searched the crowd, they spotted a group of black cloaks in one edge of the field. The fury blazed up in me again when I grasped who they were: Aro, Marcus, and Caius, all fearfully waiting the battle out under the safety of the trees. Renata, Aro's shield, was there, along with some members of the guard. Jane and Alec were standing a few feet away, apparently defending rather than attacking. Had my shield crippled them enough that they were completely unable to fight? I smiled at the thought.

Suddenly the longing to fight gripped me again. I forgot my own job as I looked at the heads of the Volturi, the biggest evils amongst evil, the men who were to blame for all my loss. Everyone else was too busy with the guard to even attempt an attack on them. But I was free, and I was immune against all of their shielding powers. They'd be too shocked to react in time if I attacked…

"Well, well, well, who do we have here?" someone sneered behind me. An instinctive growl poured out of my mouth as I twirled around to meet whoever it was.

It was Felix.

"Your friends are good fighters," he said, striding forward fast. I backed into the woods. "They almost saved you."

And before I could reply to his mocking, he was in the air, flying towards me at breakneck speed.

But this time I was faster.

Zafrina's words rang in my ears: "You're no use to anyone dead!" It was my duty to stay alive for as long as possible—it was time I contributed to the effort.

So I took off into the forest, dashing over the snow so fast I was almost flying. My newborn strength was still there, and all the emotion acted as fuel for me, so that I hardly needed to concentrate on my legs as I ran. Without a plain target I slalomed through the trees and leafless bushes, fueled by anger and hoping for a miracle.

But even with all my newborn strength, Felix was quick. His legs were much longer, and that made his strides huge, twice the size of mine. Although he couldn't quite catch up, I couldn't lose him either. If I slowed down for even a second, he would get me.

My mind raced. There had to be something I could do to elude him!

I tried to trick him by abruptly making a curve to the left. It worked at first—Felix failed to follow me quick enough and continued straight on. But he realized his mistake much too early. He was back at my heels before I could breathe out a sigh of relief.

Thankfully, however, it put a deciding distance between us. When I made a sharp turn again, I was able to stoop behind a group of small rocks before he could see me.

This time Felix didn't race by.

"I know you're here somewhere, Bella," he baited me, taking a sniff of the air. "You don't have to make this so darn difficult."

I remained tensely silent.

"Come on, don't you think you're being a little unfair? Your whole family is back there, fighting for your daughter's life. Shouldn't you be helping them?"

I gritted my teeth and chanted to myself: I am helping them, I am helping them. Felix was just trying to lure me out of my hideout. Still, his words stung. Especially his mention of Nessie made my stomach lurch. Again the same question flooded my mind: Was my daughter all right?

Felix was getting dangerously close. I could hear him sink his foot to the ground, the frozen ground crunch under his weight. I could hear his measured breathing.

And from one second to the other, the stones in front of me were gone.

"Ah, there you are," Felix laughed, pouncing on me before I could even gasp in surprise.

I tried to struggle away from him, but it was no use—he had me in a headlock on the ground in a second.

I growled and kicked and bared my teeth, but there was nothing I could do to free myself. Felix was holding me cleverly—far away from my teeth so I couldn't bite him, and at a spot around my arms that made it impossible for me to move them.

"Shh, calm down, newbie. Take a deep breath and count to ten."

I snarled. The world around me was crimson.

But after a few minutes of struggling I had to admit it was futile. I eventually slackened in his grip, closing my eyes and adjusting my shield around everyone, just to make sure I would do a good job until the very end. I marveled the light sparks that warmed me inside the cover, like fireflies under a blanket—I was sure I could recognize some, like Carlisle and his slightly chemical smell, and without a doubt Emmett, whose spark felt thicker than the others. And there was one spark, one so bright and stunning that it made me feel pleasantly warm even in the snow, that it just had to be Edward's. Why hadn't I realized it before? I would know exactly where he was for as long as I was alive. I could feel his spark dance, very much alive…

Felix grabbed my shoulders and pulled me to my feet without letting me go.

"All right, move it. In that direction." He pointed towards the clearing.

I looked up at him, confused. "What?"

"You heard me!" Felix answered, sounding impatient. "Get a move on. Everyone's waiting for us."

"Huh?" I straightened my back and looked around me. All I could see were bare trees and snow, but then I noted the strange calm in the air. There was no more growling and ripping. It was as if the fighting had stopped—but why would it have? And why on earth was I still alive if it had? "You're not going to kill me?" I asked, almost sounding like I wanted him to.

"It turned out I don't have to." Felix shrugged, pulling my hands behind my back and lightly pushing me forwards. "You lost anyway."

"No!" What did he mean, "lost"? We couldn't have lost, not after everything! We couldn't have lost without me losing with them…

Felix said nothing, but drew me closer to him and kicked my legs, forcing me to take a step forwards. Paralyzed, I walked in the direction he was steering me. Panic and sorrow washed over me like a tsunami, burying any fear or anger I should have felt towards him. If we'd lost, how many were still alive? Was I the only one? Why wasn't I dead? I hadn't imagined I'd have to live on without everyone.

I felt a hand against my neck. I looked down without thinking—it was Felix. He was… stroking me.

"Don't be sad," he said gently. "Most of your friends are fine. This will all be over soon, no matter the outcome."

I was too shocked to push his hand away. It started venturing lower and lower, until Felix had his hand right on the small of my back. He stopped there, holding me gently, even soothingly, until alarm bells started ringing in my head.

"Don't touch me!" I hissed, trying to wriggle out of his grasp. Felix chuckled and let go of my back, but kept firm hold of my arms. I fumed.

Then we were on the clearing. The sun had come out during some point, and it sent rainbows of light bouncing off the vampires' skin. The snow reflected the light too, camouflaging the people on it. Only the clothes were visible against the white.

Without thinking anything but feeling everything in the world, my eyes swept over the view. The dark-cloaked vampires were standing, but others were on their knees, being held down by large figures…

I recognized Carlisle. He smiled weakly when I met his eye. A big vampire was looming over him, keeping a firm hand on his shoulder. Carlisle looked more shaken than I had ever seen him before.

Right next to him was Esme. She, too, smiled at the sight of me, looking relieved.

Emmett and Rosalie were also there, huddling together. There were five guards around them.

So most of my family appeared to be all right, as Felix had promised. As he led me to the middle of the field, I looked over the rest of the captives. The other covens hadn't been so lucky. Only Kate was still there, looking like a zombie in the arms of Garrett, who was no less grief-stricken himself. Zafrina was there, and so were Benjamin and Tia. Maggie was hunched on the ground, but her chest was still moving, making me hope that she was still somewhat alive—physically, at least.

The wolves were nowhere to be seen. I swallowed down the panic and pushed the observation away from my mind.

And there, on the opposite side of the clearing, a familiar face greeted me with a look of relief so great that it made my dead heart jump. Edward was on his knees, his arms crossed tightly over his chest like he was trying to contain a tornado there. His eyes were blacker than midnight.

"Bella!" he choked out, dropping his arms and attempting to stand up. The two men around him pushed him back down.

I took in the sight of him—I'd never appreciated it this much before. Who knew how long I had to enjoy his angelic features? At least I got to see him once more before I died.

Edward was all right. The revelation thawed my frozen muscles.

Felix gave me a shove, making me land hard on my hands and knees. I looked up, still feeling the effects of seeing Edward alive clouding my mind.

Only then did I notice that others were watching me.