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Monster

Summary:
I'm nothing but a monster burning in a hell that only exists in my head. There's no hope left until one harmless glance chances logic and binds two eternal enemies together in a twist of fate. Can the escape from this hell be found in an infuriating dimpled grin? Or is this another dark, dirty trick of my own mind? A forbidden passion, heat, and intense anger—this is no fairytale.


Notes:
[Disclaimer: Monster is an originally plotted fic. The ideas within this fic are not to be copied in any way, shape, or form—I have not given my consent to any manner of copying. All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the intellectual property of their respective owners. All canon concepts and characters are the property of the Twilight Saga's author, Stephenie Meyer. No copyright infringement is intended. Similarities are for the sole use of fan fiction, and no profit has been or will be benefited from the posting of this fic.] Emerging Swan Award 2012, nominated into Fandom Choice Awards.


2. Breaking the Ice

Rating 0/5   Word Count 2887   Review this Chapter

"When she was just a girl
She expected the world
But it flew away from her reach so
She ran away in her sleep."
- Coldplay.

Chapter Two

Breaking the Ice

December 3rd, 1998.

Before I knew it, I was seven years old. It sounded like a very big accomplishment at the time—it was something that could make any young girl proud. Once I was seven, I had to use two hands to tell people how old I was. That was pretty cool, because babies could only use one hand. I was seven, so I couldn't be thought of as a baby anymore.

When I was seven, there was one special thing that I could do that babies couldn't. Babies couldn't sneak off into the woods all by themselves in the heart of the bitter winter season. That was because it got so cold in those long months that a baby couldn't stand the unforgiving winds and bone chilling temperatures. But I was not a baby, so of course being out in the woods alone during the winter was an acceptable thing for me to do. I did it all the time when I needed time alone. It started off as a rash decision driven by confusion, but with time, the trips had turned into a daily habit.

Although I had created various patterns of escape, I didn't bother to try anything fancy on this day. After my Uncle Sam had tucked me in for my nap, I counted to ten in my head. When I didn't hear footsteps, I threw my blankets to the side, ran over to my window and I tugged at the latch desperately until it popped. I shoved the window open just enough for me to slide through. I shivered as a breath of the winter cold stung my skin, but the adrenaline of the moment kept me warm. After another breath and shiver, I squeezed through the space of the cracked window and tumbled a few feet toward the open ground, somersaulting through the powdery winter snow before I landed flat on my belly. I crawled through the ground, spitting out the snow that had slipped through my lips, and then felt my way numbly through the forest until I was face-to-face with a wide oak tree.

I was instantly washed with peace. When I settled into the snow, I hummed to myself. Time seemed to stop, freezing in the moment. I leaned back against a tree, studying my surroundings. My world had been painted white with thick sheets of snow. Within minutes, my ears were tinted pink, and my fingertips had gone numb. Still, I didn't want to go inside.

Uncle Sam and Nicole were back at the house, completely oblivious to my absence. They never would suspect that I would leave the house in the winter. The house was really big and pretty and warm—I only came out to play in the snow with Sam and Nicole once a day because as far as they knew, I hated the cold. Really, I liked the snow. The numbness of it just felt . . . good.

I hadn't always been doing things that Sam and Nicole didn't know about. Things started out okay, actually. Four years ago, Uncle Sam brought Nicole and me to the reservation—the place where all the Quileute people lived. All of the Quileute people looked the same: black hair, dark eyes, and year-round tans. Uncle Sam told us that Daddy was a native, too, just like him. He told us Daddy grew up around the reservation but went to Alaska to be with Mommy, even though she was not a Quileute. That made Nicole and me half Quileute. I didn't completely understand the half Quileute thing, but I understood that Daddy probably should not have left the reservation to be with Mommy. Still, I thought it was really nice of him.

Nicole and I hadn't seen Mommy and Daddy since we came to live with Uncle Sam. Sam wasn't bad at taking care of us, though. He let us eat the last cookie from the jar, took us out to explore the villages, taught us the alphabet, and instructed us on other educational things. I really liked living with Uncle Sam, but I missed Mommy and Daddy. A lot. A few times I had asked Uncle Sam when my parents would come to get my sister and me. He always answered the same way: "Don't listen to your nightmares. They'll be here soon."

I hung onto Sam's word, believing that someday my parents would knock on the door and life would continue on as if we'd never been separated. I stayed patient and hopeful up until one winter afternoon when Sam told us something that changed everything completely.

I pushed my fists, purple with the cold, into my pockets. With a deep, slow breath, I cuddled back into the tree. My heavy lids dropped quickly, and just a moment later, my body tensed. I fell into a sea of flashbacks.

The first picture that came to my mind featured Sam.

He shook out his snow-covered hat and wiped his feet on the rug. Sam slipped out of his coat and took a deep breath, greeting Nicole and me with a nod before moving across the room and flipping off the television without a word. Nicole and I both stared up at him as he turned back to us.

Sam sighed and knelt in front of the couch. He smiled a little and took our hands in one of his large, warm ones; the copper color of his skin matched ours almost exactly. His chocolate eyes were warm and sweet, yet somehow troubled in a way I didn't understand. Sam stumbled through his words as he tried to explain that our parents were dead and wouldn't be coming back.

I wasn't sure that it was the best time to let us hear that, but Sam said he just couldn't take the questions anymore. Asking when Daddy would come pick us up, wondering if Mommy would really visit this year for our birthdays. . . Sam couldn't do it. I stared blankly at Sam for a while until his words gradually started to make sense. My stomach twisted as I realized Daddy was never going to pick us up again, and Mommy would never be there for my birthday. Ice locked around my heart and then broke—I was flooded with a chilled wave of understanding.

Nicole stayed silent and still throughout the whole story, with the exception of a few nods and shudders. The whole time she repeatedly glanced at me with an icy gaze, studying my expression. Nicole, who was accepting what she was hearing without a problem, stood and wrapped her thin arms around Sam's neck when his body shook as she tried to comfort him. She understood in an instant.

"It's going to be okay," Nicole had whispered, placing a gentle kiss on his forehead.

Then, there was me—stunned. My own sister was brushing off this news as if Mommy and Daddy meant nothing to her. My blood felt like acid, and my baby teeth clenched. I listened to Sam until the magnitude of the story had shaken me beyond the point of understanding. My ears rung and my teeth grinded together as all Sam's lies, all my false hope and all our loss crushed me right then and there.

I had never felt such strong emotions before. My body shuddered when it tried to cope with the sudden surge of emotions. Sam and Nicole's words slurred together as the world around me blurred out of focus. I forced Sam's hand away and instantly knew I had to find some way to escape, filled with a sudden desire to get out of the house and away from the world.

Why?

That was all I wanted to know when I froze out in the winter forest. The cold numbed my other thoughts and took me out of the world. Why did this happen to my sister and me, when we had done nothing to deserve it? Why didn't it happen to some kid who did deserve it? Why?

My fiery frustration returned, dragging me back into reality. I became aware of my surroundings. I blinked, swinging my head from side to side as I tried to figure out what had snapped me back. It didn't take long for me to find out.

Crunch.

Snow crackled from behind me, once, twice, then over and over again. My frozen mind took a minute to register the sound of someone walking toward me.

I huddled back against the bark, feeling a slight sliver of comfort when it held itself firmly in place. Thin bushes swayed around me, stripped bare by the cold. The wind howled, whistling in my ears and blocking out the crunching snow. I stared up at the pale grey sky, my heart pounding. I waited to be found by Sam to finally bust me for sneaking out. I hoped for him to find me and confess that what he had said was only a joke.

I waited for something that would never happen, no matter how much I wanted it to.

After a few minutes of silence, I grew confused. Why was he just standing there? I hadn't thought anybody else would want to wander out into the woods as I had.

My gaze fell from the sky and landed upon an oddly familiar stranger. He stood beneath the grey sky, his stance tall and his body lean. He was as white as the snow, positioned in a crouch. His expression was frozen in a wild screech when he leaned toward me.

"No!" I shouted. Maybe it was a stupid thing to do, but I couldn't help it. The monster parted his lips in a hiss, revealing his teeth. I blinked my eyes once, and he was gone.

My mind twirled like a tornado, much too fast for me to keep up. The shock of the moment paralyzed me, but only for a second. I acted out of pure instinct—I jumped to my feet, ignoring the burn of my frozen legs. I turned and hurried to get away from the monster, dashing through the snow as fast as I could.

My legs sunk knee-deep after just a few short strides. The cold burned my skin as it melted on my legs, biting hard into the skin that wasn't covered by the ratty knee-length nightgown covering my body. I tripped a few times, falling face-first into what felt like a freezing fire. Still, I pushed forward, accompanied by the same frozen flashes of crimson stares, glazed with hunger, by my side.

The voice in my head telling me to run was the only thing that kept me going. The need to escape allowed me to move my numb, aching legs. My breath was heavy and wheezing as I trudged into deeper snow. Still, I managed to continue on through thin, dead brush and deep carpets of snow.

Eventually, I stopped to catch my breath. I held my fists curled to my chest and let my eyes—flared wide with fear—scan around. The Cold Man seemed to have disappeared. I exhaled slowly and turned to go, only to see the glowing figure of the red-eyed man directly behind me.

Panicked, I spun around, trying hard to break my feet free of the snow I had sunk into and run farther away. I bent my knee and gave it a hard yank, my arms straight out by my sides to steady myself. My attempt failed.

I tumbled, landing hard on my hands and knees in a crunchy pile of snow. Shivers shot through my body as I struggled to free myself once more. I pulled with all my might, but it still wasn't enough. My legs and arms were weighed down with exhaustion, and I didn't have the strength; I was trapped in the snow with no escape.

I shook my head. Showers of snow sprayed around me, dotting the powdery surface. Breath squeezed into my swollen throat. From the cloud of grey snowfall, I could hear the hiss, see those eyes. . .

Suddenly, a gust of chilly air and snow slapped at the figure. I blinked once more. By the time my lids had closed and opened, I found myself alone again, as if the Cold Man had disappeared in that second.

Right then I felt a sudden burst of strength. I wasn't going to stop now; I was positive that the figure would appear again. Ripping my red, stinging arms free from the thick layers, I fell back into a bed of much softer snow, protecting my face with my hands. Snow crackled as the figure stepped closer. I gathered my courage and gazed through the slits of my eyes, trying to see what was coming.

The Cold Man lunged. He gave a feral snarl, his hand outstretched for me. I froze, unable to tear my gaze away. I knew I was done for. I knew I wouldn't escape—he would take my life as he had taken my parents.

Then, suddenly, everything changed. A hulking black form burst through the Cold Man. His lunging form evaporated, disappearing as the black form ran through. I stopped and stared, my mind unable to comprehend what this creature was.

What looked like a black shadow stood over me, its breath huffing out in front of it. The creature was not at all a Cold Man. Confused, I fully opened my eyes and stared back into two gentle pools of dark blue.

Hot breath whispered across my face, melting away the fear. A muzzle pressed into my palm, and a nose felt the steady pulse in my wrist. My heart thumped, speeding up with the sudden fear of being eaten by this animal, but the warmth radiating from him drew me in. My fingers knotted into a black, icy ruff, and my nails dug into a downy undercoat. Heat instantly spread across my palms. I let out a breath, my body relaxing with relief, and pulled my trembling body closer to the warmth. My eyes fell shut, too heavy to stay open any longer.

It was hard for me to explain what happened next.

Somehow, the body under my hands changed. The warmth was still there, but the body was shifting and the coarse feeling of fur disappeared from under my palms. Instead, I was holding something that was still warm, but smoother.

I fought the exhaustion in my mind, fought the cold trying to steal me away. One eye opened and I could make out the blurry shape of one tan, toned arm. My vision went fuzzy again, and my eyes squeezed shut. I swallowed back the lump in my throat and rolled in the arms carrying me. My forehead bumped into what felt like a bare chest. I knew who it was even before he spoke.

"She shouldn't be doing this," Sam ranted, seeming to be talking to himself. "Why did she come out here? Is it my fault?"

He paused for a moment. I could feel his eyes settle on my form, and he sighed. "You're okay, honey. Daddy is here," Sam murmured softly.

"Daddy," I whispered, my eyes still shut tight. "You need to run. . ."

He chuckled weakly. "There's nothing to run from. It was all in your head."

My heart hammered against my ribs as I remembered the gleam in those murderous eyes. The image of the Cold Man was alive in my mind again. I could clearly see the Cold Man when he stalked towards me with his teeth bared, ready to kill. . .

"You're lying!" I squirmed in Sam's arms, desperate for escape. "Run! Daddy, run, he's gonna get you!"

Sam didn't run. I could feel my body sway slightly in Sam's arms as he continued to calmly walk through the forest. One hand—strong, but gentle and reassuring—stroked my tangled hair back, straightening it out. "Shh, it'll be okay. It wasn't real. You just got too cold, honey. You're safe. I've got you."

I never understood how he did it, but Sam's tone and words calmed me. I curled into his arms, snuggling against him. His reassurance was comforting, but I was still scared.

"Stay away from the Christmas tree," I warned him in a mumble. "A Cold One will be there. . ."

"No, there is no Christmas tree. Everything is okay," he replied. His voice was thick with worry, but still soft.

When he continued to stroke my hair, I reached up and grabbed his warm hand with both of my icy ones. I held on tight, just in case someone tried to steal him from me. "Love you, Daddy. . ."

Sam might have said something in response, but I didn't get the chance to hear it. The exhaustion pressed down harder in my mind. The warmth radiating from Sam's body was luring me into the temptation of sleep.

Unable to fight my exhaustion any longer, I took one last breath and told myself that as long as Sam was here, I would be okay. That was the last thing I thought before sleep pulled me in.