Authors note; Please be aware that this story is NOT Cullen friendly. I adore playing all sides of the fence and this story is no exception! This is a Bella Volturi story ultimately, so yeah…
I was scared and my emotions were chaotic. These were normal human feelings. This hadn't changed. It was a relief to know that immortality had not removed my inner reactions, only the outward appearance of them.
The journey to Forks took less than an hour, although it seemed both longer and shorter than that. Time was warped somehow, each minute passing slowly due to the amount of information I was able to process, but speeding too, because of my own supernatural speed and that of my companions. We travelled on foot, the Volturi didn't use cars unless it was for their own recreational enjoyment. More serious matters were handled like this, just as they'd always done it. Aro was nothing if not a traditionalist.
Jane and I formed an uneasy truce, she wasn't happy that I'd bested her but we were family now, as it were, and we must get along. I hunted with Jasper again before we left to go on our journey. My eyes glowed an even more sinister red than before, if such a thing was possible. I thought fleetingly of how the Cullen's had told me that the redness of a newly turned vampire's eyes took a year to turn a friendly amber on a vegetarian diet. I smirked, mine would never be amber now. They would be forever tinted by the kills which sustained me, the lifeblood of my prey which flowed through my cold lifeless body.
I never felt more powerful than I did after a kill. Jasper explained that this was because the human blood I consumed boosted my own blood which lingered in my tissues giving me immense physical strength and speed. I loved the sensation of indestructibility, the surge of unfettered power was a heady thing. It made me realise just how powerful we were as Immortals, we were like gods.
My days as a fragile little human were long gone and I loved it. I was finally able to protect what was mine. My mate, my Jasper. My Coven. My own life or existence - whatever.
I felt less and less like my old self, every second moving me towards a future with Jasper.
My time spent with the Volturi aided the distancing from my old self, a natural part of my transition. They welcomed me into their ranks easily, as if I'd always been there. The weight of the cloak around my shoulders was like the bonds of family, instead of the servitude I'd expected. I soon became aware that our cloaks were pitch black with no red trimming at all. Jane informed me that this was to symbolise our rank as the highest among the Aro's guard. Alec, Jane, Renata and another quiet young woman by the name of Chelsea were the only others to wear plain black. I couldn't help feeling a little smug as I pulled it around myself more firmly. I stood even straighter after this, my chin held high with a certain arrogance which could only be found with the acceptance of such a powerful family.
Jasper's way with those I'd been taught to mistrust helped me see past the fear with which the entire vampire world saw the Volturi. They were his family and I'd never seen him so relaxed and at ease. The way he'd been with the Cullens had always seemed a little off to me, as if he were uncomfortable and wary. Here, amongst these so-called evil vampires he shed the weight of human expectations and became himself in a way which I found beautiful to watch.
The long black cloaks shrouded us, making us appear like wraiths as we marched at supernatural speed towards a clearing just outside of Forks. We knew they would be waiting for us. Alice would have seen our arrival.
I was curious as to what else she had seen. Although Alec assured me that my own shield had been protecting me from Alice's visions from the beginning, I was skeptical. Was my ability truly strong enough to do that?
Aro demanded that Jasper and I were beside him, along with Renata who had been his only bodyguard before me.
We reached the clearing and stopped short. One moment we weren't there and the next we were. Aro had a flair for the dramatic, I thought fondly.
I heard the shocked gasps from the waiting coven. They had not expected this.
In an instant I took in their faces, each with varying degrees of shock, hurt and betrayal. My heart squeezed in response, although outwardly I was calm and emotionless.
"What have you done to her!" Edward cried at once, his question directed at Aro, his tortured gaze fixed on me. His beauty had faded to me, he was nothing more than an inconvenient memory.
Aro smirked at him and he bowed as gracefully as any 17th century dandy. He ignored Edward's question.
"Greetings fair ones. It is good to see you all here today."
I allowed myself a moment to feel the things I tried to suppress. Jasper knew it all. He was there inside me, as always, my guiding light, my seraphic guide, my angel of death. Our relationship was closer than anyone else's could ever be. He saw the inner workings of my mind, he knew the real me.
Feel it and then discard it. Jasper told me in mind.
Edward could obviously still read Jasper's mind because I wasn't shielding anyone but myself …yet. His gaze snapped to Jasper.
"Who are you speaking to?" He asked with a frown.
Jasper didn't reply but he smirked. It was smug and boastful. "Wouldn't you like to know." He replied blandly.
"Hello," Carlisle said, stepping forward. "We were expecting you."
Aro nodded, his face mischievous. "As you see my family has grown somewhat since we last met, dear Carlisle."
Carlisle's face hardened. "I see that. It appears that my son has changed sides, perhaps as part of his psychotic break earlier in the month."
Jasper eyed him, his emotions hard. "I was never your son, despite what you may have thought."
Aro clasped his hands together and stepped forward, I alone followed him, as if I were glued to his side. Everyone noticed this.
"Who is responsible for Bella's transformation?" Edward asked, his voice worried and caring. It grated on my nerves.
"Isabella completed her transformation just days ago. Jasper is her sire." Aro provided helpfully.
"Why are you here?" Hissed Alice, cutting off Aro disclosing any further information. "Have you come to rub it in our faces that you've stolen two of our own?"
Each member of the Volturi coven grinned and looked among themselves, while the Cullens shifted uncomfortably.
"I'm afraid that these two were never part of your coven." Aro gestured to Jasper. "I'm pleased to finally admit that Jasper has been my friend and consort for the last hundred and fifty years. I regard him as I would a son. His mission, as it were, was to infiltrate your coven and discover whether your unhealthy practices are a threat to our way of life - indeed to the entire vampire world!"
Aro paused and flung his cloak back dramatically,
"How pleased I was when my son returned to me with a mate of his own." He gestured to me, his smile fond.
I saw their reactions and studied them closely.
Edward was heartbroken, Carlisle livid, Alice jealous, Esme disappointed, Emmett hurt and Rosalie indifferent.
"Why does Bella follow you so closely?" Carlisle seemed curious.
Aro placed his hand on my shoulder and I sent him a small smile. "Would you like to tell them, dear Isabella?"
He was chastising the Cullen's for not addressing me directly with any of their questions.
I nodded. "My place beside Aro is due to my place among our guard."
I deliberately said our to emphasise my place among the Volturi.
"You've made her a member of your guard?! But why?" Edward asked, perplexed. Again the question was directed at Aro. I sighed, a wholly human gesture of fatigue I didn't need to use but rather liked for its eloquence.
Aro lost some of his humor, his milky scarlett gaze turning cold.
"You disrespect a member of my family so flippantly, old friend, you unwittingly speed up the process we came here today to set in motion." Aro paused and glanced at Marcus and Ciaus. "Perhaps it is best…"
I was surprised at Aro's defense of me. A warm sense of pride and belonging surged through me. Family.
"Why are you here, Aro?" Carlisle said.
"We are here to put a stop to your disgusting way of life." Caius spat, speaking at last. He shuddered delicately. "Such perversions cannot be allowed to continue!"
"Our diet is none of your concern. We have broken none of your laws." Carlisle looked perplexed.
"Ah, but just because something doesn't cause trouble for us today, does not mean there is no danger. You maintain a permanent residence nearby do you not? Among humans."
I saw the shift among the Cullens as the penny dropped and they realised the angle Aro was going to use to prove their disloyalty.
They looked scared.
I was uneasy myself, I did not look forward to their demise however bonded I felt with my new coven.
Carlisle stepped toward Aro, and his path was instantly blocked by Demetri, Alec and Jane.
"We have lived this way for a long time and no-one has ever suspected a thing. Our secret is safe."
Aro looked back at his entourage, a small smile playing along the edges of his lips.
"We could overlook this - breach - in protocol if you would all partake in our usual food source. I mean, look at Isabella! She is a shining example of how well our natural diet agrees with a vampire!"
I'd been staring straight ahead to avoid seeing the Cullen's. But now, at Aro's words my gaze flickered towards them. My eyes were a glistening, demonic red and I saw their reaction to them. They were repulsed. Heartbroken. Devastated.
I resumed my thousand yard stare.
"What you've done to her should be a crime." Edward snarled.
"It was Bella's choice to follow our natural diet." Jasper told them, his smile sardonic, as he stepped forwards to take his place at my side. His hand found mine, and I intertwined my fingers with his.
Alice stared, her dark gaze fixed onto our hands. "How dare you rub this in my face! He's my husband Bella! When I saw your imminent descent into darkness I never saw this! I trusted you! I confided in you!"
An ache developed in my chest, right where my heart used to beat. Could vampires throw up? I felt as if I was going to.
"I'm sorry for misleading you, Alice. But what could I have told you back then? That I was falling in love with your husband? Or that my entire life up until then had led me to this existence, with Jasper? He is my everything! My mate! My sire! My lover! I cannot exist where he is not. I cannot regret anything that brought me to him."
Edward winced and I was sorry for him.
Jasper's pleasure at my little declaration flowed through me and I was giddy with it, high on us.
We glanced at each other and it spoke volumes, our intimacy was a palpable thing.
"There's more, isn't there?" Alice said, her voice small and forlorn. "I can sense it - what is it between you two? I can sense a connection, but I don't know what it is."
Never reveal all your cards, presa. Jasper reminded me in my mind.
"You're still invisible to me! Ugh, I thought it would have changed now that you're a vampire, but nothing." Alice grimaced, her gaze wary.
She can't see a thing. I said to Jasper in his mind. Alec was right! My shield still protects my mind from all of their gifts.
All except mine, darlin'. He replied, his lips twitching the barest amount in self satisfaction. He'd breeched my defences and he fucking loved it.
Edward cocked his head, listening to Jasper's one sided conversation. "It's you." He said at last, speaking to me directly for the first time. "He's speaking to Bella." He told everyone at large.
"That's not possible, Edward," Alice said, dismissing the idea entirely. Vampires did not develop telepathy with one person and it was never two sided.
Jasper hadn't wanted to reveal all our cards just yet, but this was too much for even him to resist.
"The bond was formed the very first time I entered Bella's consciousness. It's an anomaly, completely unexpected. Each time we were together our connection intensified until we had sex and then it completed its self, joining not only our bodies but our minds." Jasper's tone was undeniably smug.
I heard Edward grinding his teeth, seething with anger and betrayal. The rest of the Cullens looked stunned.
"Did you always mean to steal her from me, brother?" Edward spat, his amber gaze turning black.
"It wasn't my intention to begin with, no. But it certainly wasn't hard, Edward. I simply gave her everything she desired, everything she craved and was denied….you denied her over and over again. How long did you think it would be before she left you?"
Emmett stepped forward for the first time and placed his hand on his brother's shoulder.
"Edward, leave it." He said firmly. "We have bigger problems."
"Yes Edward, leave her. I always said she wasn't worth it." Rosalie said, her tone acidic.
"Silence!" Aro said firmly with barely an inflection to his voice.
"We have come here today, not to debate Bella's suitability for immortality nor her sire bond with her mate, but rather to exterminate a threat to our existence." Aro continued.
As he spoke Alec stepped forward and a thick, cloying vapor appeared from his fingertips, moving towards the Cullen's slowly but surely.
I stood ready, my entire being focused on hiding Aro and myself if necessary.
Jasper stepped away from me, he did not need my protection.
Jane whispered; "Pain." In a childish, singsong voice, which quite frankly was a creepy as fuck.
The Cullen's collapsed, each one of them writhing in agony.
It was going to be a slaughter.
My heart ached. I didn't want them to die. But I couldn't betray Jasper. Never that.
"Enough." Jasper told Jane.
The torture stopped instantly. In the second it took for the pain to subside Jasper attacked the Cullen's.
He didn't like the idea of an unfair fight any more than I did. Aro and his brothers said nothing, as they stood back and let Jasper lead.
I was itching to join in but I saw Emmett bearing down on us and I knew the time had come to fulfill my purpose. I reached for Aro and allowed the heat which always danced at my fingertips to consume me.
Hide! I thought, and we did.
Emmett collided with my shield and I felt it to my toes. The power behind the attack was absorbed by my shield and it flowed through me. Aro looked as wide-eyed as a child, he was thrilled to be inside my bubble.
I kept my shield up while Jasper appeared and fought Emmett right beside us.
It took seconds, although it felt like an eternity. In the end there were four corpses.
But two were missing.
Alice and Edward were gone.