Set during/after Ch. 12 Eclipse. Newborns are terrorizing Seattle. The vampires of the Olympic Peninsula are worried that the Volturi will become involved, so they call their closest friends and allies. But when the Denali clan shun Carlisle's request due to Laurent's death, an old friend unexpectedly answers his plea. Will his presence shake up their rock solid foundation? B&G
4. Chapter 4-Coersion
Rating 0/5 Word Count 3135 Review this Chapter
This is not E/B fiction. Characters are slightly OOC
Remember plot is AU
"Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap."
Holy Bible: King James Version
*Twilight is the sole property of SM and publishing company.*
My eyes flew open of their own accord, and I gasped loudly, completely unaware of my surroundings. Deep in my subconscious, I realized that something terrifying had transpired. Yet, it seemed as though my mental pathways were not firing at peak performance. My body and mind felt heavy and drugged, almost as though I had been under general anesthesia. Taking a quick cursory look around the room, I breathed a tiny sigh. A tiny breath. I was in Edward's room, in Edward's bed, with an opulent, silk comforter draped loosely across my still form. I closed my eyes in an attempt to regain my bearings, but under my lids, like a movie reel, the events that led to my unconsciousness flickered like a faulty light bulb in the forefront of my mind.
Loud, boisterous voices and feral snarls wafted up the stairwell, enveloping me with a sense of unease. A loud crash echoed through the house—erupting in my ears and splintering my world. I listened intently to the words being shouted, catching every other word. "Mates" "Not yours." "Mine!" The words pertained to me, and I wasn't entirely comfortable with the phases that were being uttered. They spoke volumes to my spirit, mentally and physically weighing me down. The men below spoke of me as though I were a prize to be acquired; a damned piece of meat. There was no Isabella Swan—no love—only acquisition. I had the overwhelming urge to fly down the stairs and stop the commotion— impede the chaos that was erupting only twenty-three steps away, but I couldn't see it within me to move an inch.
I sat straight up in bed and grasped my hair in frustration, an action that I'd seen Edward do on more than one occasion. The pain was almost comforting and reminded me that I was still conscious—that whatever was happening downstairs, however unbelievable, wasn't a figment of my imagination. In my anger, I dropped my hands and angrily grasped the lace of the duvet. I dug my fingernails into the fabric, tearing the hem away from the silk and spilling downy feathers across the bed. The shredded cloth mirrored my heart completely. The giant chasm that had been opened and stitched together by Edward's return had been reopened, allowing my emotions to seep into the soft, velvety stuffing.
This couldn't be happening again. Surely whatever God that resided in the heavens would've spared me yet another crippling heartache. But that didn't seem to be in the stars for me—it wasn't my fate to live a normal, human life—the same life that Edward had so cruelly attempted to force upon me. I shouldn't have stayed in the light, distanced myself from the shadows. If I had done so, perhaps I would've spared myself the misery that was transpiring around me.
I had done so many reckless things in his absence—all to hear velvet voice of my god-like vampire. At the moment, the visions that I had conjured up in my brain hadn't painted a very comprehensive vision of the man I claimed to love. I saw that now. Why hadn't I coped with the depression and moved on? I wished I had.
Esme and Alice flitted silently into the room when they heard the upsurge of my heart rate. I jumped at their sudden appearance. My best friend knelt at the edge of the bed and looked at me with sorrow clouding her ocher eyes. Esme mirrored her daughter's mournful expression, pitying me with her topaz gaze.
"Alice," I said icily. "Tell me you didn't see all this. Tell me that this was all a big fucking surprise—completely spur of the moment. Because if it was something you envisioned, I'm not sure I can forgive you this time."
Alice dropped her head and nervously gazed at the carpeting. It was as though the millions of tiny fibers somehow held the answer to my questions. "I saw small fragments of tonight's events. I envisioned you and Edward's fight and him denying you immortality—"
I scoffed at her nonchalance. Somehow, I wasn't all that surprised that she'd seen the argument between Edward and myself. Yet, it angered me just the same. I was pissed that after everything that had happened that she, my best friend, would even consider withholding something as crucial as my fate.
Hadn't I nearly died in Volterra to prove my worth and love?
"Bella, please listen to what I have to say before you condemn me for my actions." I nodded reluctantly. "I envisioned tonight's events, minus Garrett's involvement. But believe me when I say, I saw several different outcomes regarding your future. I didn't want to complicate the situation by swaying your reactions. I'm truly sorry for keeping you out of the loop, but I swear that I was acting in you best interest. You're my sister and I want the best for you."
I flew off the bed in a move reminiscent of a vampire, surprising myself with my speed and grace. "My own good, Alice? Really? I'm hardly a child who needs coddling, nor should I be kept in the dark about my future. My fate is my own, and I'm quite certain that I can accept whatever happens. I hate what you are all doing to me!"
Alice looked pained at my reaction. Esme glanced at her daughter and sighed softly. Obviously, she wasn't pleased by either her actions or words. She brought her gaze back to me and took several steps towards me, pulling me gently into her arms. I willingly sunk into them, basking in the love and warmth that only she could give, accepting the small comfort. I wasn't really mad at Esme or Carlisle. It was Alice and Edward who had set me on edge.
Esme reached up and stroked my hair, sighing gently. "I'm so sorry, Bella. I realize that this must've been terribly upsetting for you. You're correct. We all have been quite inconsiderate of your feelings and precarious situation. I promise you we will do everything in our power to keep you safe."
I huffed and gently pulled away from her embrace, smiling faintly in gratitude. Without a word or a second thought, I turned on my heel and quickly hurried down the hall. My mind was reeling in a hundred different directions as I slowly loped toward the staircase. I slid to a stop at the top of the stairs when I heard the words—words that would change everything in my little world.
"Edward, dude! I'd stay still if I were you. Garrett ain't playin'. He'll rip you to sheds and there's not a damned thing we can do about it," Emmett nervously explained to his brother, for all intents and purposes.
Garrett took a deep breath and knelt beside Edward's head. "You have a slight reprieve. Bella has to accept me as her mate. I won't stand in her way if she chooses you. But I have no qualms about beating you ass again if you don't treat Isabella as a lady."
His mate? Garrett's fucking mate?
Well, he had another thing coming. Sure, he was gorgeous and mysterious and I seemed to be irrevocably drawn to him, but for God's sakes, I refused to be passed around like yesterday's garbage. Damned smug vampires! Carlisle's mysterious friend wasn't waltzing into his house and suddenly dictating my life. I wasn't ready to be repressed by another vampire. Wasn't once enough?
A small breeze wafted around still form, ruffling my hair around my face. I frantically glanced around, seeking the source of air disturbance. My eyes landed upon the two women who I had just shared a rather upsetting conversation. Alice was tucked under Jasper's arm and Esme under Carlisle's. Rosalie was knelt by her husband who had Edward securely beneath his ass. Such a fitting place for him to be, I thought.
Carlisle, arm securely around his wife, looked up at me and shook his head, silently begging me to stay silent. However, I couldn't hold my tongue another second, regardless of his warning. "W...what's going on down here? You're screaming about mates—arguing over me like I'm a piece of meat. Somebody better tell me what the fuck is happening this minute!"
Before Carlisle could warn me a second time, I skipped down the stairs with a grace so foreign to me that my heart nearly skipped a beat. I was far more than pissed. Being furious must've equated to balance and poise. I would have to remember that in the future.
Stopping at the foot of the stairs, I looked at all those around me, cataloging each expression carefully. Everyone had a different emotion etched across their perfect faces, yet the prominent emotion was pity. I rolled my eyes. Tonight was turning out to be the worst of my short life, perhaps trumping that fateful day in the forest where Edward yanked out my heart and set it aflame. At present, it was in a similar predicament, threatening to revolt.
Just as I felt myself on the edge of breaking, a wave of confidence washed over me. I looked up into Jasper's ocher eyes and closed my own, relishing in the absence of my anxiety. Honestly, I wanted nothing more than to bat the newfound emotion away. The last thing I needed was for my friend to influence me, but instead of rejecting his thoughtful gift, I decided to use Jasper's strength to my advantage. I had the distinct feeling he fueled my spirit with a purpose.
I walked purposely across the floor and stood over Edward, who was still pinned under Emmett's massive frame. I felt powerful towering over him, momentarily forgetting that he was deadly predator. I had questions, and I expected answers.
"What is he talking about Edward?" I glanced over my shoulder at Garrett and pointed my finger in his direction.
Garrett glanced over at me and smiled softly, looking slightly pensive at my response. I thought he was waiting for me to address him directly, or maybe he thought I'd fall at his feet, but I had far more pressing issues to deal with—like Edward's great big, fat fucking lie. I would deal with the beautiful blond second.
I turned back to Edward. If I could shoot daggers from my eyes, and he would be harmed, my personal Adonis would've been impaled. "I'm not your mate? How is this even possible? Did you know I wasn't you mate all along? Was it love? Or was it always simply about my blood, or the enigma of my silent mind?"
"Bella, you have to understand. I love you. Keeping you human kept your soul pure. My curiosity may have initially begun with your mind, but it grew into so much more than that. You know this, love. I know you feel our connection. I can see it in your eyes."
Edward struggled under Emmett's frame, desperate to free himself. The large man looked at me considerately, attempting to gauge my reaction to Edward's release. I closed my eyes and nodded, giving him permission without uttering a word.
My boyfriend, soon to be ex if he didn't properly explain himself, sprung to his feet. Edward threw a hand up to his throat, attempting to stifle the pale liquid that streamed from the wound on his throat, seeping between his fingers. A tight line formed between my brows. Edward had been injured. I felt almost compelled to go to him, comfort him somehow, but when he spoke, his tone was condescending, and my anger returned with fervor.
He beamed at me with his trademark crooked smile. "Bella, love—"
I made a disgusted sound in the back of my throat. "Edward, I'll let that sentiment fall on deaf ears. Apparently, trust and truth are as unobtainable as my thoughts. The sweet nothings that regularly escape your lips flow off a forked tongue. Your words mesmerize me and cause me to forget my own name. I can't breathe—can't process things in your presence. It is as though you compel me to love you—coerce to obey your every desire, even when I disagree with you. And up until now, I have followed you blindly. I just can't—"
My words faltered as the pieces fell into place, eyes widening in response. My hand flew up to my mouth, holding back a sob that I wouldn't allow to escape my lips. I couldn't believe I hadn't seen it before. Holding my free hand out in font of my body, I took several steps back in shock, attempting to keep Edward at a distance. But my obvious attempt at solitude didn't register with the copper-headed vampire, and he closed the gap between us, holding his free arm out toward me. His ocher eyes were large pools of liquid sorrow, solemn and apologetic, pleading me to fall prey to his gorgeous features and lovely eyes.
My hand fell lose at my side and I dropped my head; eyes swimming with unshed tears. "But you didn't want me to change, did you? It had nothing to do with my soul. If I were a vampire, I would know you deceived me, huh? But, why? Why would you promise me forever, if you never intended on doing so?"
He took a deep, unnecessary breath before he responded, "Bella, you are acting absurd. Of course we're mates. Of course I would love to spend eternity with you, but I will not condemn you to this life. I love you with everything I am—"
Garrett growled and immediately stepped between us, causing everyone in the room to go on guard. Edward returned his displeasure and dipped into a crouch. I stiffened and took several steps back, frightened by the seething demon that had possessed Edward. Before I could act, Emmett grasped my by the shoulder and gently towed me into his arms, holding me tightly to his chest. I struggled but to no avail.
The rest of the family closed in on Emmett and I, blocking me from any harm. Rosalie stepped close and stroked my hair, cooing reassuring words in my ear. I was truly surprised by her reaction, but I couldn't focus of her uncharacteristic actions or her kind words. I had a feeling shit was going to hit the fan, and that it was important that I witness the altercation.
"Boy, don't lie to the lady. Never lie. Now that she knows the truth, step aside and let her live her own destiny—choose her own path. If she chooses you—then I'll step aside. She can choose me or not, but she must become a vampire. This is law, boy! You knew the consequences, yet you brought this fate upon her tenfold. Had our kind not crossed paths, she would've been free to live a human life—safe from the shadows and the life that accompanies it. But now, she'll pay the price for your lack of common sense."—Garrett spun around in a circle, pointing to each person in turn.—"Will you condemn everyone in this room, including the woman you claim to love, because you couldn't stay away?
"Admit her blood drew you in. Conquering your demon, ruling your blood lust, made you feel powerful, didn't it? I'm surprised as old as Carlisle is, and his many years at court, that he knew nothing of complexity of human blood. Did you truly not know that you can coerce your singer? Make her irrevocably bend to your will—drunk with passion—eyes only for you. It's a fortuitous quirk, isn't it?"
Carlisle stepped away from the group and laid his hand on Garrett's shoulder in a sign of solidarity. "I assure you I had no knowledge of this, my friend. Had I known, I would have prevented Edward's involvement in her life."
The sandy-haired vampire nodded at the Cullen Patriarch and turned to me. His lovely features softened and a genuine smile spread across his lips. The garnet eyes that bore into my soul were soft and kind. My heart exploded in my chest, beating frantically beneath my breast and filling my abdomen with a swarm of butterflies. I hated my body's reaction. It made me feel weak—vulnerable.
"Isabella, despite what Edward has told you, I'm your true mate. I cannot allow a lie to cloud your judgment—sway you in any way. You hear your body's response to my presence? That's our bond. We were made for each other—cut from the same cloth. Although, I must admit, you are, without a doubt, the purer of us both."
I opened my mouth to object, but the words wouldn't come. I wanted to yell at him—curse him—tell him that he was as big a liar as Edward, but my mouth wouldn't betray my body. His words rang true in my ears, and as much as I wished otherwise, his words were genuine. It was the truth.
"No one in this room should tell you how to feel, or how to act. Neither Edward or I hold you in any way. The electricity you feel when you touch him is nothing but his compulsion. I wish you to know that you are free to make your own choices, little one. Know that if you were my lover, I would treat you like the princess that you are and always listen to you. Please understand my diet will never depict my demeanor in regards to you. It brings me great sorrow that you must pay for Edward's sins. If not for you and Carlisle, I would kill him where he stands."
Strangely enough, even in my despair, I achieved something unexpected from this unlikely guest. The charming and mysterious stranger, who had silently waltzed into my life, filled me with hope and truth. There was something there, something foreign, but comforting, just the same. His spirit pulled me gently with gossamer ribbons, leading me in the path my life was meant to follow, yet I didn't feel tethered to him as I had with Edward. Our connection was light and free and totally obtainable, should I chose his company.
Garrett's crimson eyes had seen a thousand sunrises, witnessed a dozen lifetimes—both evil and magnificent in scope. Yet, when he gazed at me, it was as though he was gazing at the world for the first time. Time stood still while in his presence. He soaked in every small nuance and flicker of emotion, bathing in my presence, rather then merely craving my blood.
Edward's eyes had never told such a story, nor would they ever.
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