A White Wedding
Edward and Bella are getting married. It will be an unusual wedding, what with there being a family of vampires present. But in every other way it will be just like a normal wedding. Except most other weddings don't include insane gatecrashing vampires
3. Chapter 3
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CHAPTER THREE - INVADERS
Cleo had screamed so much... hysterical and insane...running down the street covered in her own blood... she should have known better... she should have stopped... might still be alive then...
The flames in the fire danced higher, fuelled by the very force of my memories and emotions. Red and amber heat coiled together into images of the woman being dragged down, her throat cut...
"Jesus, Danny, stop it!"
I blinked. The night came back, the forest around me returning, filling over my visiong to take away Cleo's dead eyes and cold skin. With a shudder at the memory, I glanced over the fire at the vampire that had spoken.
He lounged on the ground like he owned the entire world. His long dark hair fell messy and uncombed over his forehead, his red eyes gazing up through hanging strands. The black silk shirt he wore was torn, muddy, creased. He should have looked weak, or tired. But instead, there was just that inescapable sense of ease. And danger.
With anyone else, I would have just said that it was beyond my control. But this was Donovan, and lack of control simply wouldn't be good enough for him.
"Sorry, Donovan," I mumbled eventually.
The flames in the fire died, easing back into their normal height. The images faded, but still remained. Like I said, I couldn't make them come or go.
But he grunted, seeming satisfied. "I don't want to see any more of that stupid little wretch."
I looked back at him, stung. "Cleo was my friend. She was Fletcher's wife!"
"More fool him," he said bluntly. "Marrying humans is a ridiculous farce. He should be glad it ended before he got her pregnant."
Donovan snorted. "He'll get over it. Cleo was hardly catch of the century."
Disgusted, I turned away and grabbed my backpack from where it lay amongst the other five and two roll up tents. To any human, we would have looked like a nice group of friends, out on a camping excursion.
Pushing through my clothes, I eventually managed to find my book, nestled at the bottom, dog eared and fading. I tucked my knees up to my chest, back to Donovan, and leant against a tree trunk, and began to read.
After a while, the inevitable happened: Donovan got bored.
With a heavy sigh, he said my name. "Dante."
Ignoring him, I turned a page.
I turned another page.
My hands reached to turn the page again when long olive-skinned fingers flashed in front of my face, quicker than even I could see, and yanked the book away. I went for it, but Donovan stopped me, one hand on my shoulder, the other holding my book way up high.
"We don't have time to read, dear Dante," he drawled, his handsome face tilting into a smug smile.
"But we have time to camp out in the middle of the forest?" I snapped. Leaning back, I sat down again, knowing better than to try for my book back.
Donovan sat opposite me, still smiling. "That, my dear, has a reason behind it. If we go charging straight in there, no warning, we're going to get attacked. If we stay stationary, they should see we mean no harm."
"I thought you liked a good fight." I couldn't keep the revulsion out of my tone.
"Normally," he grinned. "But with the Volturi breathing down our necks, I'd rather not get on this coven's bad side."
"You're going to get on their bad side anyway when you take the girl."
My leader sat back, looking impressed. It was very rare that anyone stood up to him, and me defying him was virtually unheard of. A man like Donovan liked to have a bit of disobedience every now and again. But too much, and you ended up sharing the Thames with the fishies.
Shrugging, he licked his lips in eager anticipation. "And when that time comes, trust me, it's going to be one hell of a fight. But until then, I want to get a chance to get to know them. Last time I met them, they were only three strong. Aro said they've grown."
"Seven," I said. "Eight if they've made good on their deal."
"Excellent," he grinned.
"We can't take on seven people," I insisted. Thinking of my brother in battle bringing a wash of terror over me. "And Fletcher is in no fit state to fight -"
"Would you rather they killed him?" Donovan said sharply. "We made this deal, Dante, and there is no going back now."
I snorted my disbelief. "You would have taken it anyway, just to spill some blood."
"True," he agreed. "But it's better when there are things at stake."
"Again, true." He grinned down at me, the need and longing to fight so fresh and alive in his eyes.
"I want to impress the Volturi," he said. "And I intend to do that by making this operation go as smoothly as possible. And to do that, I need to extend an offer of a meeting."
I had a fear I knew where this was going. "So send Helga to tell their leader - she'd throw herself into a volcano if you told her to."
"I was thinking I would send a more...mental message..."
Getting to my feet, I shook my head firmly. "Absolutely not, no way!" I yelled. "It's bad enough that we're going to go in there and ruin this girl's entire life. I will not break mind her as well!"
Donovan followed, smile fading. The eagerness to fight and draw blood was still there. But now, it wasn't directed at fantasies of killing our enemies. Now, it was aimed at me. Oh, he would get a lot of pleasure from finishing me off, and the look in his eyes let me know it.
"You'll do as I say," he said softly, his anger so loud. I felt it like fire along my skin.
I took a step back.
"Your brother is in the forest right now with Bruce and Helga," he continued, menace filling his every word. "One word from me, and they'll crush him. Refuse me again, Dante, and I'll make sure they make him hurt."
My blood went cold. Luke was out there right now, with those two - two people who would do anything Donovan said, including slaughter their own coven member. If Donovan said my brother was dead, he would wind up dead.
"Fine," I said, voice shaky. "Fine. I'll do it."
The anger vanished. The threat was still there, hanging in the air between us. But everything else was just gone.
"Excellent," he laughed.