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Family Ties

Summary:
Rose didn't stay with the Cullen's after Emmett's first year; she wasn't his mate and left him there. But what if Carlisle and Esme's past isn't how everyone thinks either? Is there something more to Alice and Edward than they show to people? This is my first attempt at doing fan fiction, I hope you enjoy it! Rated M for future possible violence, language and adult situations..


Notes:
I would appreciate if any readers would also review. I won't know if I'm doing at least an ok job at writing this if I don't get any feed back.. Thank you! Oh, and I so do not own Twilight or any of the characters; Stephanie Meyer does.. Keyria however, she is my creation alone, along with everything about her...


5. The Truth

Rating 5/5   Word Count 6692   Review this Chapter

Disclaimer: I do not own twilight or any of the characters, Stephanie Meyer does!

A/N: I know this chapter is rather long, but I just didn't feel a good place to break it up.

Keyria's POV

Monday morning. My first day at Fork's High School, right in the last semester too. I wasn't allowed to take my own car, thanks to Emmett. That was something we'd bickered about all weekend, ending with threats of no more gaming if I did take it. So naturally, I surrendered on my hands and knees begging him to never utter those words again. The weekend had been rather quiet actually, everyone staying to themselves for the most part.

I was stretching on my bed, still in my tank top and shorts when I heard the tap on the door.

"Rise and shine, Ria. Time to take on the day, and meet my truck." Emmett didn't even wait before walking right in, my face widening in shock at him seeing me like this.

I scrambled to pull my covers over my body, throwing a pillow in his face when he started laughing.

"Dammit, Emmett! Couldn't you wait til I was dressed? Get out!" I couldn't help but laugh though, his look of mock terror was hilarious! He backed away slowly, hands up like he was giving up.

"Sorry, Ria. I was just excited about showing you around. I'll wait downstairs for you." He relaxed and smiled, making a final peek through the door.

"And I think you look fine just like that." He winked and ducked, another pillow hitting the door as it shut.

My cheeks were definitely red, I couldn't believe anyone could think a hot mess was fine. I knew my hair was wild and crazy, and hell, I wasn't even wearing real clothes! I slipped out of bed and tossed a tank top and jeans on the bed. Nothing too special on the first day; the attention would probably be bad enough already. I brushed through my hair pretty easily, pulling it back in a sloppy bun. I changed clothes and slipped on my Op skater shoes, grabbing a jacket on my way out the door.

"Alright, Emmett. Now I'm ready to go, Mr. Impatient." I stuck my tongue out a little as I came into the living room. He chuckled and stood up, stepping close and circling around me.

"Not bad, Ria. Simple and laid back, and no make-up. I like it." He smiled, turning as the others joined us. Alice and Jasper were holding hands and smiling; Edward looked like he was in a hurry for something.

"Go on and get Bella, Edward. Keyria's riding with Emmett." Jasper laughed as he spoke, watching him almost bolt out the door.

I giggled a little myself, looking at the couple.

"Is he always like that?" It wasn't strange, but I did think it was slightly odd for someone to be so anxious about being with someone else. It didn't have the same feeling to me like I had around Emmett; it was almost kinda creepy.

Jasper nodded and looked like he was thinking the same thing.

"Yes ma'am he is. And it seems to get worse everyday." He shook his head a little then smiled.

"We'll see you at school, then. Be careful, Emmett." He flashed Emmett a quick look, his face no longer as soft as it had been. What was that about? Of course Emmett would be careful; I was with him.

Pretty full of yourself now, are we? Maybe Jasper wasn't talking about the drive...Have you seen the way he looks at you? Or are you pretending not to notice? The voice sneered in my head, teasing as I approached the door.

Shut up, you. We're just friends. He's only being nice, making me feel comfortable. I smiled at Emmett, his back to me as I waited for him.

"You know I'll be careful, bro. Ria's family, and we keep family safe, right?" Emmett patted Jasper's shoulder, turning toward me finally.

"Ready for the jungle, Ria? I'll do my best to keep em off ya, but I may not get em all. Those kids are crazy around newbies." He chuckled as I laughed, his large hand at my lower back as we left.

I was expecting some huge, decked out monster of a vehicle when we got to the garage; but was pleasantly surprised at the one he approached. A 1994 Jeep Wrangler. Jet black, soft top, 5 speed four cylinder. It had a 3 inch suspension lift and huge mud tires; it was beautiful!

"This is a sweet ride, Emmett! She's beautiful!" I ran my hand along the smooth hood, picturing it covered in mud after a long day of mudding. This was a vehicle I would want; something nice that you could still play in. I smiled at Emmett, drumming my fingers slightly.

"Can I drive?" I kinda just blurted it out, hoping he wouldn't get all weird about it. I knew some guys were all strangely protective of their cars, though I honestly didn't see why.

Emmett raised his brows and crossed his bulky arms lightly across his chest.

"You think you can handle it? Can you even drive a stick?" He sounded a little unsure, and I couldn't blame him. Letting a person drive your standard vehicle for the first time ever is a scary thought, especially if said person didn't know how.

I walked up to him, my lips curling into a playful smile.

"Oh I can work a stick alright. There's a lot more to me than meets the eye." I laughed a bit and stepped back. I don't know why I said things like that to him; I typically kept to myself. And I had never really tried to flirt before. I felt a little blush creep up my cheeks.

"Yeah...uh...I see." Emmett stumbled on his words a little, something I hadn't seen him do. He cleared his throat and fished the keys from his pocket. He grinned at me as he held them out, that playfulness sparkling in his eyes again.

"Here you go. Maybe I'll get the chance to find out more about you after you drive my Jeep. Just don't kill me, ok?" He winked and walked around, sliding into the passenger seat.

It was clear that Emmett had expected me to be nervous, maybe stalling or grinding the gears. But by the time we pulled in to Fork's High, the look of shock that had been etched on his face softened to one of joy.
"You are amazing! I really thought you'd have slipped up a little, but it's like you've driven my jeep a million times!" He was beaming at me, the excitement was clear in his body language.

"I told you I could work a stick! That's what happens when you doubt me; you get surprised." I liked teasing him, the way he acted all hurt or playfully glared at me made me smile.

"Well, I think I like getting surprised by you. And I don't usually like surprises." He chuckled and dangled his stocky arm over my shoulders, steering me toward the entrance of my new school.

Alice scurried off, dragging a very irritated Jasper behind her. I felt bad for him really, especially since he always seemed so sweet to her. I didn't see Edward, so I figured he was still getting Bella. I couldn't wait to actually meet her, though I was a little nervous about it. What if she was like Alice? I shuddered slightly at the thought; I didn't know if I could handle being around two chicks like that.

I smiled up at Emmett as he steered me to the main office, getting my mind back to lighter subjects. We stopped at the counter, greeted by an older woman with a warm smile.

"Good morning, Emmett. I'm assuming this must be Ms. Platt?" She raised her brows just slightly, bringing a file closer.

"Yes ma'am. This is Keyria Platt; Carlisle and Esme's niece. We'd like to get her schedule, maybe make a couple changes if we need to?" Emmett smiled, leaning on the counter as the secretary flipped through through the paperwork and nodded.

"Well of course. Trying to keep her in classes with you and your siblings, huh? Well, that might help with the awkward new-student thing. Here, take a look and let me know what you'd like to change." She handed the paper to Emmett, giving us both a smile as she stepped away while we looked it over.

"Well, Emy, what do I have?" I giggled a little, craning my neck to look at my schedule with him.

"You're with Jasper and Edward in Advanced Algebra; Alice and me in Civics; me and Edward for Advanced Biology; then we all have lunch. After that there's me, Edward and Bella in Literature; Bella and Jasper for History; and then we're all in Art and Gym. Huh, seems like we may not have to change anything. Must be a good thing you've got A.P. classes, or else we might have had to change quite a bit." Emmett smiled at me, nudging my shoulder a little.

"Yeah, but I kinda expected it though. It is kind of a small school. So, wanna take me to my locker then?" I nudged him back, feeling very relieved that most of my days at school would still be around Emmett. He just made me feel centered, relaxed.

He nodded and tapped his fingers on the counter.

"Thanks, Mrs. Baker. We don't need any changes, so I'm just going to take her from here." He gave Mrs. Baker a small wink, a slight blush rising on her cheeks as she nodded and waved.

I thought it was pretty cute, the way Emmett was so nice to her. Guys usually tended to be slightly...aloof?...around older women; but Emmett seemed to enjoy brightening her day a little. We rounded a corner and stopped at a row of lockers, Emmett already twisting the combination on one.

"Yours is right here, Ria. I'll give you one of my locks in a sec." He pointed to the one at his left and slipped a lock in my hand.

I saw something beside me and turned my head, jumping just a little at a guy standing like, really close to me.

"Oh, um, sorry. I ..." he muttered, his mouth going slack as his eyes landed on mine. I raised my brows a little, wondering just what this guy wanted.

"Oh! Sorry..um..W-well... I-I know you're new and stuff..But.. I was..uh...I was wondering if maybe you'd um... maybe like to uh... go out sometime? Like, when you're settled and stuff." He blundered on, his pale face reddening as he stumbled through.

I swallowed hard, taking a small step back before thudding into Emmett's chest.

Jeeze! He doesn't even know my damn name and he's asking me out! Seriously!?

I couldn't believe my luck. I hadn't even got started with my first day and there was already a guy bugging me about dating.

Emmett draped his arm around my shoulder again, holding me to him.

"Sorry dude, but we haven't figured out what our relationship is yet. But just to be safe, I'd not bother with a future possibility. Just go ahead and cut your losses, bro." Emmett spoke rather softly, but was still stern. He gave the kid a smirk, then a slight jerk of his head sent the poor guy stumbling away as fast as he could.

I honestly think I could have kissed Emmett for that, but I refrained and gave him a huge smile instead.

"Oh my god, thank you Emmett! You saved me right there, I owe you man." I put my hand on his arm, looking him in the eye so he would know I was being serious. I didn't really want to date anyone, much less get a boyfriend before my first day at Fork's even started. When he looked down at me and returned the smile, I did reconsider my no-dating policy for a nanosecond.

It would be worth it for him, I thought.

No! Snap out of it girlie! That voice shouted.

"Anytime Ria. Happy to help." He gave me a wink and the bell rang; guess I'd be meeting Bella at lunch then. Emmett walked me to my first class, giving a nod to Jasper as we separated.

The classes really seemed to just fly by, the teachers basically introducing me to the class and getting me caught up. I did get a nice surprise in Biology though, apparently I was just in time for the frog dissection. That was also the first class I got in trouble in; Emmett's booming laugh bouncing off the classroom walls when I made the frog dance.

It was finally lunch, and of course Emmett was by my side.

"Dang, Ria! Where in the hell did that come from? It was hilarious!" He was still laughing, heads turning toward us as we entered the cafeteria.

"I remembered an old cartoon about a guy who found a frog that would sing and dance, but only around the guy who found him. The frog wouldn't do it for anyone else." I gave the explanation, trying to think of the song that damn frog sang!

"Well, it was funny as hell. Sorry you got in trouble though. What happened to the guy who found the frog?" He asked, grabbing two trays of food and elbowing me in the direction of the table.

"Oh, he went crazy." I smiled, knowing that would probably make him laugh again. I loved it when I was right.
Edward was scowling, he had been from the very beginning. I just rolled my eyes and sat down; some people needed to loosen up. Damn...

I spotted the girl to his right; slight, quiet and playing with her food. She was actually very pretty; warm, chocolate brown hair, a smooth, tannish complexion and a small, lean frame. It had to be Bella, there was no one else it could be.

"I'm Keyria. You must be Bella. Emmett's told me a little about you. It's nice to finally meet you." I spoke softly and smiled, trying not to shock the horse-poop out of her by being too excited. She looked up and smiled, her warm brown eyes staring right into mine.

"Hi Keyria. Yeah, I'm Bella. How do you know the Cullens'? Edward hasn't really told me much." She was quiet, looking at her food toward the end.

So Edward didn't tell his girlfriend about me? What the hell was up with that? How would you not tell your girlfriend that you suddenly have a girl living in the same house with you?

"Carlisle and Esme are my Aunt and Uncle. My parents vanished a few months ago and I had to come stay with them until after I graduate. It's been a lot to take in." I gave her a little smile, reassuring her that it wasn't too bad. She looked at Edward quickly and he shook his head slightly. I don't even know if I want to know what that was about.

"I'm sorry to hear that. But I hope everything gets better for you, Key." She smiled again, shifting herself away from Edward slightly.

"Oh my god. I can't wait to go shopping after school today! You sure you don't wanna come with us Keyria?" Alice's shrill voice sliced through the tranquil conversation we'd been having. I did my best to hold back my death-dagger glare when I looked at her.

"Yeah I'm sure Alice. I'm going to have a good bit of homework when I get home. You know, catching up and everything. Plus, I still have some unpacking to do anyway." I managed to keep my voice rather pleasant actually, by some unknown miracle of the gods. I even managed a smile, looking at Jasper as his phone started ringing.

Dixie? Like, seriously?

Emmett's POV

I couldn't believe my luck. I was sitting with a girl who was totally amazing! Yeah, Ria was sweet and kinda quiet sometimes; but she was also hilarious and quirky too! The fact that she was hot as hell didn't hurt anything either! I couldn't help but wonder how she felt about me, but I knew I couldn't just ask her. That would be so not cool, not to mention it'd make my feelings way obvious. I had to keep my cool, stick to the plan and hope I could tweak it enough to find out.

My attention switched to Jasper as his phone rang, shaking my head at his more-than-ironic ringtone.

"Hello, Carlisle. What can I do for you?" Jasper's voice was low, but Ria and Bella could still hear him.

"Jasper. I know Alice had previous plans after school today, but I'm afraid you will not be able to join. Something has come up and I need your logic to assist me with it." Carlisle's voice was clear to me through the phone, but we were the only one's who could hear it. I couldn't imagine hearing a one-sided conversation, that must be really hard to follow for Bella and Ria.

"Of course, sir. I'm sure Alice will understand." Jasper dared a glance to his left, Alice's eyes shooting daggers at him.

"Really, Jas? You're not coming? But I wanted to get you new clothes, and I hate having to buy them without a good fitting!" Alice was whining, again.

I don't know how Jasper did it; all that whining and pouting would drive me nuts!

"I'm sorry, Alice. But Carlisle said he needed my help, and I can't tell him no. We can go shopping again tomorrow, just enjoy your trip today, okay?" His voice was more tired than apologetic, and I couldn't really blame him. I'd be completely wiped out after just a day, I couldn't imagine a couple decades. But, I guess you'll put up with a lot for someone you love. I know I would. I looked back at Keyria, watching as she spoke with Bella.

"Whatever then. But there won't be any excuses tomorrow, Jasper! I don't care what goes on or what happens, you are going shopping with me!" Alice huffed, her eyes gleaming through Jasper before she stood and stormed off.

Jasper sighed and shut his phone, standing slowly from the table.

"Forgive me Edward, Bella. I can't join you today, but have fun anyway. And maybe try to cheer her up while you're out?" He looked at Edward, who nodded almost too quickly, then left after Alice.

"Well, looks like the house might be kinda quiet for a while today, with a slight chance of intense activity closer to midnight." I made the comment as though I were predicting the weather, getting a smile from both Bella and Keyria.

"Well it can't be too important, or he would have had us postpone our trip altogether. I don't see why she got all worked up, it was for nothing." Edward sounded bored as he stood from the table.

"Bella, we should be going now." He held out his hand, Bella took it and rose meekly. She was always so timid around Edward, it just wasn't right.

They left and it was just me and Ria left, cute and smiling Ria.

"Lunch is almost over, and the rest of the day will fly by. Maybe some chill time when we get home? Unless you're one of those book-worms who can't stand putting off homework?" I smiled at her, teasing Ria was just so much fun. She stuck her tongue out at me and I couldn't help but stare at her mouth. My god, those lips looked so soft and so warm...

Keyria's POV

"Um, hello? Earth to Emmett! Did you hear anything I just said?" I waved my hand in front of him, laughing when he shook his head and looked at me.

"Huh? Sorry...what?" His eyes flashed to mine, a shy smile on his lips. I just shook my head and stood up, looking down at him with a smile.

"Nevermind, Em. Let's get to class, maybe I won't get any homework." I gave him a little wink, smiling as we walked off.

At least Emmett was right, the rest of the day did go by fast. It was kind of a blur, really. But on the plus side, I would get to know Bella a little better now. We got partnered up in History, a project on local legends and stuff. There was already a lot of information that the teacher provided, but we would have to research more ourselves to get a good grade. A sleepover was planned for the weekend, that way both of us could research different things at the same time to make it easier. Plus, we'd get to hang out and see if we got along or not.
We were walking into the house when Jasper asked how my first day was.

"Oh, it was alright. I mean, I've got a long project for History along with catching up everywhere else. Not to mention having guys asking me out already." Just thinking about this morning's encounter irritated me.

"Really? Who was it?" Jasper looked at Emmett and smiled, confusing me even more.

"No idea. He didn't even know my name! Who in the hell asks someone out without even knowing their name? Ugh! I don't have the time or the patience for this!" I was almost yelling, I was so upset. I didn't want to try dealing with a relationship with everything else going on; much less with someone I didn't even know. I mean, maybe if it was someone I actually knew, I might consider it. But not a complete stranger.

"Calm down, Keyria. We've got some stuff to talk about anyway, so we can add that to the list. Maybe we can come up with something that'll help." Jasper's voice did soothe me a little, and I felt myself getting calmer.

"You're right. I'm sorry guys; it just irritates me." I was feeling calmer, and I was starting to wonder why I had gotten so upset to begin with.

"So, what do we have to talk about? Have I done something wrong or something?" I spoke softly, wondering what I might have done.

"You didn't do anything wrong, Ria. When Esme and Carlisle come in, we'll all sit down and talk. It's nothing bad, just a few things we thought we should tell you. Don't worry, I'll be right there." Emmett was trying to reassure me, but even he sounded kinda down.
What on earth was going on?

We moved into the living room and I sat on the couch, Emmett sliding next to me while Jasper lowered into a chair. Esme and Carlisle walked in just then, like they knew we were in there already. They sat on the loveseat across from me, both of them looking uncertain of what to say.

"Um...Jasper said we had some stuff to talk about? Is...is there something wrong? Did I do something?" I sat up a little, Emmett's cold hand patted my knee.

Carlisle and Esme smiled, shaking their heads.

"No, sweetheart. Well, I mean, you did do something, but it's nothing bad and certainly not wrong." Esme gave me one of her warm smiles, making me feel a little better about this.

"Keyria. What we have to tell you is going to be very hard to believe; but please trust me when I tell you it's the truth. We have no reason to be untruthful to you; you are our family and we must keep you safe." Carlisle spoke slowly, and I was beginning to get a little freaked out. What on earth could it possibly be; and how did my safety have anything to do with it? Were they mass-murderer's or something?

"Keyria, you need to stay calm. I can tell you're getting nervous, even a little scared. I promise you that no one in this room is going to hurt you." Jasper's smooth southern drawl floated to my ears, my mind relaxing even though I knew things weren't right.

"Jasper's right, Keyria. We won't hurt you, and we won't let anyone else hurt you either." Esme reassured me, patting Carlisle on the leg a little.

"Right. So, first and foremost, you need to know the truth about what we really are." Carlisle paused, I guess he was gauging my reactions or something. I raised my brows a little and tipped my head slightly, gesturing for him to continue.

"We are vampires. Esme, Emmett, Jasper, Alice, Edward, and myself. There are many vampires in the world, and we are but a family of them." He finished speaking, watching me closely as I nodded my head while I took it in.

I busted out laughing, my hand slapping my knee as I stood. This was a good joke, I just knew Emmett was behind this one.

"Wow, Ria! You're taking this like, way cool. I thought you'd be freaking our when we told you." I looked down at Emmett, expecting to see a huge, shit-eating grin on his face. Instead, I was greeted with a look of total shock by my reaction.

"Wait, what? What do you mean 'taking this cool'? You're messing with me right? This is just a wicked good prank, isn't it?" I looked around the room, everyone shaking their head. I sank back down on the couch, my eyes on the floor.

Vampires? They were all vampires? Vampires were real? What in the sea-monkey's donkey nuts was going on? How could this be true?

"Vampires are real. And you are all vampires. Like, Bram Stoker's Dracula?" I looked at Esme when she gave a small laugh.

"I'm sorry, dear. I just didn't expect the calm question. To answer you though, no. We are not like any vampires you've seen in movies or read about in books. Well, except for drinking blood, but even that isn't the same. Garlic does nothing to us, nor does a cross or silver. We can go out in the day, just not into bright sunlight. We don't burst into flames or anything; we just sparkle. And that would be very strange for a human to see. We live much like everyone else, like many other families." Esme looked at me, then to Carlisle.

So, vampires were real and my Aunt and Uncle, along with their adopted kids, were vampires. I was living in a house full of vampires; sleeping surrounded by vampires.

Oh my sweet tushy's jiggle; I had a major crush on a vampire!

And that's when it hit me.

"Whoa, wait! You aren't gonna like, eat me, are you?" I was on my feet again, ready to bolt for the door if any of them said yes or moved my way.

"No, Keyria. No one is going to eat you. We have lived for a very long time feeding on animals. Thanks to living that way, we have been able to control the desire to feed off humans. You have no reason to be afraid." Carlisle sounded serious, but it was still very hard to believe.

"Ok, this is sounding way too 'Twilight-Zone'. Is there some way to prove it? I don't want to doubt you, or accuse you of lying, but it is kinda hard to believe." I was picking at my fingers, trying to make this all add up in my brain.

"Of course. We took into consideration that fact you may require some type of evidence, otherwise there would have been no other way of making you believe. Besides, it will help us move on to our next topic of discussion." Jasper spoke calmly, like he already had all of this planned.

He rose from the chair and gestured behind him, the yard outside was blindingly bright with the rare sunshine that graced Forks now and then.

"You remember Esme saying that we sparkle in the sunlight? Well, I knew the sun would be out today, and we'll have the chance to show you. But when we do, you will need to keep your distance in order to see it. We will go out first, then you can follow and witness it yourself. When you join us, we will discuss more." He looked at me for a minute, making sure I understood.

I nodded slowly and looked at them, Emmett giving me a smile before he vanished. The rest followed suit, leaving me alone and in slight shock at their disappearance.
Well damn! They didn't mention that part...

I moved to the door and actually felt my jaw drop when I saw them.

They were amazing! All of them standing there like marble statues, glittering as though they had all dipped themselves in some uber- sparkly glitter. Emmett looked the best though, his large, bulky body shimmering. I felt goosebumps raise on my skin. How in the heck did someone look so freaking hot when they were shining brighter than a neon disco ball in deep space?

Damn!

I stepped outside and came up to them, frowning a little as their sparkle went away.

"Um, alrighty then. You really do sparkle. But why aren't you sparkling now? Does it just go away after a few minutes or something? I looked at all of them again, almost seeing them for the first time all over.

So they were the sparkly kind of vampires, I could roll with that.

"No, Keyria. It's you. You are suppressing our sparkle, keeping us from glittering in the sunshine. It's a gift, not one we have seen before. There are vampires who have gifts, some stronger, or dealing with other areas, than most. There are also humans who are gifted, but mostly in the psychic aspect. Humans gifted in other ways are less common, less heard of. Mostly because they themselves do not know the possess it. Like you, Keyria. You didn't know of your gift because you did not know of vampires. And even if you had been around one for a short moment, you would not have noticed because of it." Jasper explained it, making it fairly easy to understand really.

"So I like, get rid of the sparkle? Does it hurt you? Is it permanent?" I wasn't scared anymore, but I was worried about hurting them. I moved to take a step back, only to have Emmett reach for me with a look of pain in his eyes.

"Ria, please. You aren't hurting us, and I don't think it's anything permanent. Please don't run away, please." Emmett sounded like he was close to tears, like he was terrified I hated them or something.
My heart hurt and I stepped toward him, smiling my sweetest smile as that pain washed away.

"I wasn't going to run away, Emmett. I just didn't want to hurt any of you." I felt a little strange, wasn't I the one who should have been getting reassured? No matter though, I would do what I could to show them all that I felt no differently about them. After all, they did take me in knowing I was human. To get trust you must give trust, so I was going to take the first step here.

"Keyria, we didn't tell you this to frighten you, or make you feel uncomfortable. We are telling you because this gift of yours could possibly make you a very tempting target for other vampires out there. Not everyone follows our lifestyle, many vampires do live on human blood alone. Now that you know what we are, and that you possess a powerful gift, we can help you keep yourself safe. We can also try to find out how your gift works, and see if you can learn to control it." Carlisle made very good points, actually. If I had never learned of vampires, one could have spotted me and done god knows what.

"So, is this something I could practice on? Like make it turn on and off kinda? And what would happen if I wanted to... become a vampire? Would I lose my gift?" I accepted their truth, but now I was curious. I wanted to know more, I wanted to learn what I could.

Carlisle looked between Esme and Jasper, hoping no doubt that one of them could answer my question better.

"You can practice with it. We can try to find where it comes from and how you use it. After that, we would simply work on trying to make it stronger or weaker, though I doubt you would ever be able to turn it off. As for becoming a vampire, that is your choice. Personally, I would ask that you think about it completely before deciding; eternity is a long time if you are uncertain. If you should choose to change, you would not lose your gift. It would actually become stronger, most likely, perhaps even encompassing more than simply eliminating our sparkle. There is no way of knowing exactly what you could do; every vampire's gift is different." Jasper was keeping his cool, speaking to me more as a teacher than a friend.

I knew vampirism was something I would have to really think about. Not something I could decide on the fly.

"Alright. Now how many of you have gifts? All of you?" I wanted to learn more about them, I just hoped I wouldn't make them uncomfortable. I leaned into Emmett, his rock-hard body giving me the support I needed.

"Well, Emmett there is uncannily strong, even for us. Jasper has the ability to both feel and influence the emotions of others; though he never influences unless he is asked or it is desperately needed. Edward can hear people's thoughts, and he is faster than most other vampires. Alice can see the future, but only when a final decision has been made. She isn't very good with something that's spur-of-the-moment though, something she is working on. Carlisle and I are simply well controlled vampires, neither of us possess an actual ability."Esme smiled at her husband; it was clear to me that she was happy just the way she was.

I had a lot to think about, a lot to figure out and get straight in my mind. God, I almost didn't want to be in school now. The guy from this morning came to mind, and I knew there would be no way I could date anyone now. There was too much at stake for an outsider to stumble on, too great of a risk to take.

Wait, what about Bella?

"Um, this might be kinda off topic, but what about Bella? I mean, I know she's dating Edward and everything. Does that mean she knows? And how in the heck can I keep guys away from me now? I can't really date any of them, not now. I need something good as a reason to say no, and I seriously doubt they'll believe I'm a lesbian." I knew they could probably care less about me dating and stuff, but the situation with Bella was important to me. If she didn't know, I was going to have to have a little talk with Edward.

A smirk appeared on Jasper's face, making me wonder which part of my questions he thought was funny.

"Bella knows. She actually figured it out quite quickly, and there have been no feeling from her which cause me to worry. I do have an idea for your guy problem, but I think Emmett should be the one to tell you." Jasper was near laughing now, and Emmett was scowling at him playfully.

I turned around and faced Emmett, raising a brow as I waited for him to fill me in.

"Jasper, I will get you for this. Um, well Ria. Jasper had the idea that uh... maybe you and I could um... pretend to date. It wouldn't be real, just something for school and when we're in public. If guys thought we were together, they would probably leave you alone. I don't mean to brag, but I am pretty intimidating. Remember the pipsqueak from this morning?" Emmett was grinning ear to ear. Blow his own horn my sweet Aunt's fanny! He knows he's built like a brick shit-house, and he enjoys it!

It was a good idea though, and it would be believable enough. Yeah, Emmett was supposedly Carlisle and Esme's son, but only because of adoption. They were supposed to be my Aunt and Uncle, but I knew now that wasn't true. I wondered for a moment what was really going on with that, hut decided that could wait until later.

I looked up at Emmett, my eyes squinting and my lips turned down.

"How dare you. How dare you think of something like that." I looked at Jasper, hoping he wouldn't give me away. A quick smirk assured me that he wouldn't, and my eyes locked back on Emmett's.

"I should have been the one to think of something like that! You beat me to it, so unfair!" A smile broke across my face, Emmett's expression of complete shock melted quickly into one of total happiness.

Props to Keyria for one hell of a joke!

"Damn, Ria! I really thought you were pissed there for a minute. You had me going, girl! Good one." He laughed and pulled me into a one-armed hug, ducking his head behind mine.

"Emmett! I know you were surprised, but you still need to watch your language, please." Esme spoke firmly, but she was still smiling that heart-melting smile.

"Sorry, mom. Maybe my new girlfriend can help me with it." He smiled at me and winked, then I elbowed him and knew there would be a huge bruise there. Damn he was hard!

"Quite right. Well, now that everyone has more than enough to think about, shall we retire to the house for the evening? Alice and Edward will be returning in a few hours, and it may not go too smoothly when we inform them that Keyria knows and has a gift of her own." Carlisle kissed Esme's head and nodded to us all, flitting into the house and out of sight.

Emmett took my hand and laced his fingers through mind gently. I gave him a puzzled look, I thought this was just a bluff we were doing for school and stuff?

"I thought you might wanna test it a little; just so we aren't all awkward at it at school." He started to pull his hand away, only stopping when I squeezed a little.

"It's alright. It's a good idea. Wouldn't feel real if it was all weird and stuff. Might as well practice a little." I smiled at him, knowing it was going to be hard to remember this wasn't real.

"Well, I'm going for a walk before they get home. I should be back well before they get here though, so if you need me let me know." Jasper spoke softly and we both waved at him.

I couldn't imagine what Jasper would go through once Alice came back. If the scene at lunch today was any preview, I knew it would be pretty bad.

Emmett and I gamed for a while, still trying to make sure we could be close and look like a couple. It was actually pretty easy, we just kinda fell into it. I'm not even sure how long we played, but my growling stomach did tell me it was time for me to eat. I was searching through the fridge when a thought went through my mind.

"Well, Emmett. I would ask if you wanted something to eat too, but I'm afraid we don't have anything on your menu!" I called out to him laughing, stopping right in my tracks when I turned and came face to face with a stunned Alice and Edward.

A/N: Well, there's the monster, I hope you enjoy! Please review if you read, that way I can thank you!