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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.


9. It's a Date

Rating 0/5   Word Count 4053   Review this Chapter

"My first kiss went a little like this." - 30H3.

Chapter Nine

It's a Date

October 20th, 2003.

"Jordaaaaaaaaaaan! I need some fooooooooood!"

My hands balled into fists as Nicole's whiny scream echoed down the hall. As my grip tightened, toothpaste spat all over my hand. I sighed and scrubbed it off, mumbling under my breath about Nicole and her obnoxious demands. Yeah, I was home again. Yeah, I was her little sister again. But no, that didn't mean she could boss me around all the time.

"No! You have arms for a reason. Use them!" I huffed and looked in the mirror at my ruffled, straight-out-of-bed appearance before adding under my breath, "For once."

Shortly after the words had left my mouth, Nicole appeared at the bathroom door. She was completely Barbie-dolled: Nicole's icy blue eyes were outlined with makeup, her lashes were curled, and her hair was waved and slightly uneven, although it still shone when it caught the light of the bathroom. Her outfit looked as if she had spent hours playing dress-up to put it together; everything went together perfectly.

Almost too perfectly. I shook my head, hoping that when I turned another year older, I wouldn't become all girly like her. While assessing her picky appearance, I missed the glare in her eyes.

"What's the occasion?" I asked harmlessly, allowing a small bit of sarcasm to enter my tone.

Nicole lifted a small book. It was a notebook with my name scrawled across the front. "Just thought I might get rid of this." She flipped the page open and her eyes scanned the words. "It's like a diary, and there's nothing interesting in it. B-o-r-i-n-g."

"Hey! GIVE IT BACK!" My fingers released the tube of toothpaste when I hurled myself at her. I swiped my hand at the book that was trapped in her grip.

Nicole's lips formed a smirk. She snapped the book shut before she turned and dashed down the hall. "Will you make me my breakfast now?" she called while rounding the corner.

I sprinted after her, hopping over random household items that were strewn across the floor. "No! Get it yourself!"

"Then I guess you don't really want it that much!" She looked over her shoulder and winked before she blew a kiss at me and darted into the kitchen.

I groaned and gritted my teeth together. My pace slowed down to a walk. For this one, I was going to get her back good. It seemed as if she had been picking on me since the hour I had returned. Why? I wasn't sure. I had grown taller than her, despite the one-year age difference between us. Our skin tone had stayed the same. The only real differences were in our eyes and hair: my eyes were dark blue, where as Nicole's were an icy color. My hair was effortlessly straight, while her hair took on more waves. I was starting to think she was jealous.

Jealous or not, I would still get her back for this.

I was too deep in thought to realize Sam had stepped out of the kitchen to block my way. He stood between Nicole and me with his arms folded tightly to his chest. My breath was pushed out of me in an awkward "oof" when I slammed into his chest.

Sam's sure hand reached out slowly to steady me. "You all right?"

"Yeah. . ." I allowed my voice to trail off. I frowned and looked up at him, blinking in an innocent manner. "Daddy, I really didn't mean to make Nicole mad like that, promise."

"It's okay, honey," Sam reassured me in a soothing tone. He lifted his hands and placed the diary firmly in my palms. He shot a warning look in Nicole's direction before his attention focused on me once more. "Let's get you some breakfast. You seem a little shaky."

My shoulders relaxed when I felt the spiral book in my hands. I fought back a smile until Sam's back was turned and he had disappeared in the kitchen. I made sure to flash a smug smile at Nicole. She replied with a huff and stomped upstairs, most likely to do her hair for the fifth time today.

Content, I spun on my heel and slipped into the kitchen. Sam was standing near the counter, his eyes focused. His lips moved while he spoke softly to himself. He was pouring cereal into a bowl, and one of his hands wrapped around a half-gallon of milk. I couldn't help but stare at the muscles of his arms and the black tattoo on his shoulder.

The tattoo was something I had noticed earlier in the week. I was used to Sam being tall and muscled, but I had to admit that when I first noticed the bold black tattoo, I had stared a little. The tattoo wasn't intimidating, but its shape—multiple slimmed faces of what seemed to be dogs, all in black ink—was unsettling. I tried my best not to stare now as he worked. My eyes strained to observe the focus in his expression instead.

"Aren't you little Miss Mysterious today," Sam mused, so softly it seemed like he was still talking to himself.

I raised an eyebrow and propped my elbows on the table before I leaned my chin on my palms. "What's that supposed to mean?"

Sam smiled to himself. His dark eyes darted to me before they settled back down onto the cereal while he dropped in bits of blueberries. "You've been dead silent all week, but now you seem pretty . . . alert. Nicole woke you up, did she?"

"No." I shook my head, knowing full well that Sam was probing me. He might not have been straight-out rude about trying to get answers out of me, but his curiosity wasn't hidden. I was going out with Eli tonight and part of his sixth "daddy" sense had picked up on that. I didn't want Sam to find out and freak, but I couldn't hide it forever. While he was trying to pry something out of me seemed like a good time to bring up the subject.

I let out a sharp breath and spoke casually. "Daddy, I'm going out tonight."

Sam cocked an eyebrow and kept his eyes down on the cereal. "Paul is finally coming out of his shell?"

"No, Daddy. I mean with a boy from school."

Sam was silent. His body froze, other than his hand. His fingers jerked open and the spoon in his hand clattered to the ground. He whipped around, his hands braced on the counter. His chocolate brown eyes were as big as saucers. "You mean . . . a date?"

My lips curled upward slightly in response while my fingers drummed against the top of the counter. "Do you count biking as a date?"

"Are you gonna be alone?" Sam asked, ignoring my question.

I nodded once. "Yeah."

"Then it is a date!" Sam groaned and slapped his hands on his head. He tugged at his short hair. "Why?!"

I dropped my arms to the table, my eyebrows scrunching in confusion. Someone normal probably would be sprinting for the door in response to the boom of his voice and heat that seemed to seep out of him. I watched him steadily without even flinching when he faced me. His jaw was set and his irises were smoldering black fire.

"Why not?" I asked smoothly, hoping to calm him down. "Nothing really horrible, is it?"

Sam's nostrils flared when he let out a breath. The steam gradually faded from his expression. For a few long moments, there was only silence between us. After what seemed like hours in a lockdown of tense stares, Sam cleared his throat. His tone softened. "Just . . . be safe, okay, honey?"

I raised a questioning eyebrow. "Sam, I'm only thirteen."

"Not yet."

"Close enough, but still."

"Too soon?"

I allowed some form of a smile to rise on my lips. "Just a little."

Sam was silent for a moment. He let the awkward silence hang between us for a moment longer, his eyes cast out the window as if he was distracted. I continued to watch him, trying not to laugh.

Eventually, Sam cleared his throat. "Well . . . let's get you girls to school, okay?" He paused, sucking in a deep breath and relaxing his quivering hands. "And if you aren't home by seven, I'll be out with my shotgun, fully loaded. That boy better be fast."

I grinned at Sam's threat, feeling any trace of the tension melt away. "Okay!"

With that, I hurried toward the door, my stomach filled with butterflies while my breakfast lay forgotten on the counter.

()()()

That afternoon couldn't have come faster. I caught Eli's glances, followed by warm smiles, in the hallways, smiling slightly at the winks and "accidental" run-ins that had made my week fly by. Other than the 'are you stupid' looks Jacob and Nicole kept giving me, everything was going great. I didn't need their approval to be happy. I had liked Eli for a while, and now he seemed to be returning the feeling. What was so bad about that?

The thought was always pushed away, no matter how frequently it had popped into my mind. My only concern was keeping myself calm. My stomach was still knotted, as it had been all week while the day of our date crawled closer and closer. It took forever for that final five minutes of my last class to pass. I tapped my pencil and chewed on my lip until I thought I might explode with anticipation. Then, finally, the bell rang and I shot out of room before anybody else had even stood up.

I fumbled through my locker, humming softly to myself. Humming had grown to be a habit, one that distracted my mind but kept it moving at the same time. I hummed and muttered softly while I searched for my homework. I couldn't find it. But then again, it was just a weekend. I wouldn't even remember to do it, anyway. After giving up, I lifted my gaze and pushed the door shut with a clang.

And there he stood.

Eli was leaning against the pale locker, looking both casual and cute at the same time. His bangs flopped over his forehead, glimmering with droplets of rain. He showed his white teeth in a grin when I looked like I had acknowledged him.

"Hey, hot stuff," he greeted, giving me a playful wink.

I laughed and shook my head him, forcing myself to meet his gaze. "How's it going?"

Eyes bright with amusement, Eli slung an arm over my shoulder and guided me toward the exit almost impatiently. "Great, now that you're goin' home with me."

Heat rose in my face as I wrapped an arm around him. Our touching bodies attracted the stares of our classmates. When I glanced around, I noticed the faces of the other kids in my grade turn blank as if they were simply staring off into space, or trying to act like they weren't staring, before they shuffled over to a friend and starting to whisper.

"Jealousy is awfully contagious, don't ya think?" Eli muttered in my ear. He drew my attention only to him when he talked, just with the smooth way he spoke. No hesitating, no stumbling, just a deep flow of sound; it was almost enchanting.

"Agreed," I murmured back. "Looks like I got some competition, huh?" My gaze darted to a girl who was staring at us while we headed for the door. Her hair was as dull black and dead as the chipping lockers behind her, and her murky brown eyes didn't flinch when I met her stare. She kept looking at me with wide eyes, her two front teeth poking out over her bottom lip.

"Chipmunk?" Eli continued to walk but angled his head the give a quick glance at the creepy girl behind us. I didn't catch the light of anger in his eyes, but it was there. A moment later, he chuckled. "Nah, I think I'm good with what I got." His grip tightened slightly, pulling me closer to his side when the pressure of all the stares lifted. I couldn't help but smile.

We stepped quickly up the steps together in rhythm. I reached forward to shove open the wide doors, raising an eyebrow and trying to keep my lips from forming a smile. The twitching movement they made must have given that away, though, because Eli laughed. I couldn't help but grin when he did. I slid back a step away from him and fearlessly slipped my fingers into his. He winked at me again and carefully led me down the sidewalk, away from the school.

Rain poured from the sky, partnered with the late October chill. I shivered while Eli and I walked hand-in-hand down the sidewalk, slick with sheets of rain that rushed down the hill and crashed into our feet. The wind screamed in our faces, drowning out the drone of engines on the road. It was the typical gorgeous weather of the reservation.

I shivered violently and pulled my sweatshirt tighter around me. I was regretting not wearing a coat, but if we were just going to go out and get all muddy, what was the point in wearing it? My fingers curled into my sweatshirt to fight off the cold while I struggled to come up with a good reason.

Eli caught on quickly. He frowned and his mouth moved. The words were lost in the currents of wind, though, and I tilted my head, mouthing for him to repeat himself. He shook his head and lifted a free hand, pushing his hood back and taking a fluffy hat from his head. With a smile, he dropped it on my freezing hand and slipped his hood back up, hiding his face away.

Another smile spread across my face in response to his offer. My skin felt tight with the cold and ached with my smile, but I couldn't stop myself. For a second, I dropped his hand to slip the puffy hat over my ears and on top of my head. The hat instantly blocked out the persistent cold.

"Thanks," I murmured to Eli. I reached up and drew the strings from his sweatshirt out, watching it shrink around his face. With a laugh, I tied the strings in a bow and found his hand again. I could almost picture his smile when he moved closer to me and guided me down the path toward his home.

After that, we continued deeper into the Quileute reservation, lost in hushed murmurs and the warmth passing between us, until we reached his house and started to pad along the slippery driveway. The strength in his grip and my careful footsteps were the only things that kept me from falling.

Eli's house was just like most of those on the reservation, if not a little fancier. A wall of tightly packed wood, a black, rough rooftop, and finished off with tinted glass windows. Well, I thought they were tinted. But when I leaned close, I thought I could see a tiny blotch of color.

Suddenly, the window was thrown open and a two hands shot out.

"Boo!"

I planted my feet against the slick ground. Eli rolled his eyes and slid his hands to rest on my arms, relaxed as if this were just everyday business. I caught movement in the corner of my eye, blurred into the background. Turning my head, I watched as a head popped out of the window. "Hey, guys!"

I continued to stare, starting to grow suspicious, when a boy, probably around ten, rolled headfirst out the window. The kid stood, mud staining the knees of his jeans and edges of his t-shirt. He mumbled and brushed his hands on his jeans, and he jogged up to Eli and me, grinning the whole way.

"What, suddenly shy?" The kid stared at Eli when he spoke, but his eyes darted to me as if he expected an instant introduction. I didn't comment or move, but watched Eli's set jaw move while he spoke.

"You were supposed to have gone home yesterday, Seth," he muttered in something that sounded close to a growl. "Why are you still here?"

I watched the boy's response, expecting him to cower back and run into the house. He simply kept grinning anyway, answering in the same cheerful tone with no show of fear. "To see your girly-friend! Duh!" The boy, whom Eli had called Seth, set two warm brown eyes on me. "Hi!"

The mood radiating off him was completely impossible to avoid. I returned his smile, hoping I wasn't upsetting Eli by doing so. "Hey there." My eyes darted to Eli, evaluating the hard expression on his face.

Eli sighed. "This is my cousin, Seth. You know, Seth Clearwater? He's family to Harry, Sue, and Leah. Pretty sure your dad knows them." He reached back to rub the back of his neck. "Uh . . . yeah. Seth, Jordan. Jordan, Seth."

"Jordan!" Seth grabbed my hand and shook it briefly. I rolled my shoulder and rubbed my arm, hoping that he hadn't popped it out of place. "It's so awesome that I get to meet you! I haven't heard much, but you sound so cool!"

I smiled slightly, my gaze set on Seth's bright expression. "Yeah, I guess I could be. Thanks."

"So, is it true that you really ran away?"

"Yeah, I did leave. But I didn't really run away, I was just looking for—"

"A gang?" Seth's eyes widened.

"No, I wasn't looking for a gang. I was looking for my h—"

"So it's not true that you fought with the gangs? I've heard that they're rebelling all around! Oh, it's horrible! The gangs and stuff are piling up and starting to go back against the Elders! But the officials seem to have it under control. I mean, it can't—"

I was relieved that Eli cut Seth's rambling off with a huff of annoyance. "How 'bout we go biking now? Before we drown?"

"Yeah!" Seth's enthusiastic cheer blocked out my reply.

Eli caught my amused smile, but he still didn't seem to be as enthusiastic. He ground his teeth together and shook his head at Seth. "No, Seth. You can't come."

Seth stared at Eli as if he had just ruined his life. "What? Why not?"

Eli's jaw worked. He spoke in a clipped, sharp tone. "Because I said so and I am in charge. Go inside, Seth."

Seth's shoulders slumped. He glanced at me for a moment and flashed a smile, but the enthusiasm was drained from his expression. He sulked back inside, leaving Eli and me alone.

Eli didn't say anything else. He only led me out to the bikes, the stormy expression on his face not relaxing until much later.

After three rollouts into the mud, four crashes, and five long races, night fell down upon us, and Eli offered to walk me home. I accepted his offer, of course. So, we had slowly made our way down the abandoned dirt road, covered head to toe with mud. Sam's house wasn't far away—it was just a twenty-minute walk, with shortcuts. Eli and I climbed up the porch, following the soft glow of a light by the door.

He stopped at the top of the doorstep, running a hand through his hair and turning to look at me. "Well…I, uh, should get going. You know, just because Sam probably wants to shoot me by now."

"How'd you know he was gonna do that?" I faked a disappointed pout. "It was supposed to be a surprise."

Eli stared at me, bewildered. "You're . . . you're kidding, right?"

I laughed once and shook my head. "Of course I'm kidding. Yeah, you probably should though, just in case. Thanks for inviting me, Eli, it was awesome."

"Yeah, I don't know how many girls would willingly get that muddy in front of a guy." His eyes darted down to my mud-splattered arms and a smirk played on his lips.

"Guess I'm special, then?"

Eli sighed lightly, his gaze suddenly intense. "Jordan Uley, you are very special."

I was just about to reply to him when I noticed something—Eli's face was angled slightly, leaning toward mine. I stared at him, only noticing his dark eyes while they had closed. My heart pounded as I wasted a split second trying to think about what was happening. What if Nicole was watching? Or Sam? What if they saw? Would they be mad? Or would they be happy? What if . . . what if. . .

Screw it, I thought to myself. The next thing I knew, my eyes fell shut and I was leaning up slightly until I felt his lips touch mine. The kiss only lasted a few seconds, but it was enough to make heat rise to my face. My stomach did a little flip. Eli let out a relieved sigh and pulled his face away, bringing me into a hug. I wrapped my arms around him, feeling a slight buzz that had suddenly spread through my body.

"Call me tomorrow, will you?" he murmured hurriedly when the front door started to creak open.

"No problem." I smiled at him.

Eli nodded his head and waved his hand. "I'll be expecting it." He turned and hopped off the porch, yanking his hood up before he jogged into the shadows.

After he was gone and my thoughts had slowed, I slipped inside the house. Sam was leaning in the doorway expectantly, his arms folded over his chest while he stared at me with a guilt-trip worthy expression. We both just stood there, staring at each other, until Sam's eyes traveled up to my head. I reached up absentmindedly, feeling the fuzzy hat still tucked over my ears. For a second, I almost considered running back to Eli, letting him know he had forgotten his hat, but I couldn't find the words. Or remember how to move.

Finally, after what seemed like an eternity of awkward silence, Sam had cleared his throat and spoke. "So, you had a good time?" The question seemed to have tons of emotions locked behind it, but I wasn't going to make this complicated.

"Yeah I had a great time," I answered simply.

Sam's throat moved when he gulped. His eyes looked almost watery. He nodded and smiled at me, but his attempt at a smile looked horribly faked. "Good for you, honey. I'm . . . happy for you. You probably should go upstairs and shower before you head off t-to b—"

I raised my hands when he started to stutter, cutting Sam off. "Sam. What's wrong?"

He paused, staring at me. I arched an eyebrow. Obviously, Sam was bothered by something, whether he told me or not. He could use a couple acting classes.

"Nothing, I promise. Just go on to bed and I'll . . . talk to you in the morning." He angled his back toward me, heading into the kitchen, and raked his shaking fingers through his black hair. Clearly, he wasn't going to tell me what was wrong. I took the hint.

Protective. Sam was being protective in an overemotional way. There was nothing much to do about a person who struggled with their emotions, especially when that person was your dad. I frowned, holding back my concern. I shrugged and once again was filled with the same post-kiss ecstasy. The memory brought a spark of giddiness into me. I almost skipped up the stairs when the bubbly feeling inside me took over.

Thirty minutes later, I was pulling the covers over my green apple scented, mud-free body. I was facing the window while images of the day rolled through my mind.

At one point, I gently touched my lips, trying to keep the smile off my face. There was no real reason not to. But, instead of spending the night away thinking about him—which I probably would have—I lay my head on his hat and tumbled into dreamless sleep.