AN: I own nothing; I just play with the toys that SM has given us all. Warning, this has Language.
"We have what is known as Mates in our world; Carlisle and Esme are Mates, just as Alice and Jasper and Emmett and Rosalie are also," Edward told me, as he smiled a simple crooked smile that she seemed to give only to me.
"Do you have one?" I asked him, curious as he walked me around his house. Slowly and with a hand always on my lower back guiding me.
"Yes, now I found you, I have. You're my Mate, Bella." Edward told me. I just nodded my head, smiling. But for some odd reason, what the cooper headed boy next to me said was just not sitting right with me.
"How do you know?" I asked him.
"When we touched the first time, what did you feel?" he asked me: his voice low, almost a whisper.
"I felt a jolt of electricity," I told him, smiling with the memory of that day in bio. I had thought that he looked hungry more than anything else. Possibly angry.
Looking up at him, I could see that he was also smiling. He just nodded his head and raised his eyebrow, waiting for me to come to some realisation.
"That was it?" I asked him. Again, he nodded.
We made our way through the house, Edward telling me about items along the way. The strangest, the giant cross hanging on the wall that Carlisle's human father had carved for his vicarage. The fact that his father was a vicar seemed oddly funny to me.
He knocked on a door and called to enter; I saw Carlisle sitting behind his desk, getting some things together. I was curious about if he got called into the hospital. When Edward asked him to tell me his story, Carlisle said that he could do the job himself as he knew it just as well.
Edward proceeded to tell me about his father's life what he had experienced in his lifetime. About some of the paintings that were hanging on the wall. Then we came to the most significant piece in the office.
"He was studying in Italy when he discovered the others there. They were much more civilised and educated than the spectre of the London sewers." Edward said with disdain clear in his tone. It shocked me that he must think of himself as above all others if that was how he talked about his father's creator.
He touched a comparatively sedate quartet of figures painted on the highest balcony, looking down calmly on the mayhem below them.
"Who are they?" I asked Edward as she started to talk about one of the other paintings on the wall.
"Aro, Marcus and Caius, Nighttime patrons of the arts." He said, indicating the other three, two black-haired men, one snowy-white haired man. I just stood there and looked at the painting. I was feeling drawn to it.
There was something about the one with snowy white hair, even though the artist, you could tell that he had an air about him that the other two did not have. Almost like he resigned himself to be alone.
Then there was the one with wavy black hair; you could almost feel the pain he was in; it radiated around him like an aura surrounding him.
One had straight, black hair; it was like you could feel the burden that he held onto being a leader for his race. 'I needed to talk to Carlisle.' was the only thought that went through my head at that second, but I didn't want to be too obvious about the fact had I had to leave.
"I'm sorry, but I have to go; I remembered that I have to meet my dad at the Station, the cruiser needs to get taken in to get serviced, so I am picking him up," I said to Edward. Then, walking out of the room and heading down the stairs, I remembered that Edward had brought me here.
Alice. I had wondered if she was still in the kitchen. So, walking that way, I went in search of her.
"Hi, Bella. Enjoying the tour of the house?" Alice asked, her tone excited when I reached the kitchen.
"Yeah, it's perfect, the house is beautiful; I was hoping that I could get a ride back home though; I need to pick up my dad from the station; I forgot all about it till a minute ago," I asked, looking hopeful.
"I can take you, Bella." Jasper piped up and said to me, smiling at me. It looked like Alice was about to tell him no. Still, I nodded to him, thanking him, before telling Esme, Alice, Emmett, and Rosalie that it was lovely seeing and meeting them, hoping that I would get another chance to see them again; before I turned and walked towards the door.
I followed Jasper out of the house, saying goodbye to Edward on the way out. Then, getting in the car as Jasper sped around the other side of the vehicle, we left the property.
After a couple of minutes, he said we were no longer within hearing range and pulled the car off the road and onto the shoulder before turning the car off.
"Why did you lie to Edward and Alice?" he asked me. It was surprising to me that he knew that I had lied to them at all.
"I needed to pick up my dad from the police station," I told him. He dipped his head slightly and raised an eyebrow at me, telling me that he knew I was lying to him too. Then I remembered what Edward had said to me that Jasper felt emotions; he knew I was lying to them.
"I don't know. Somehow, I just knew that Edward was lying about me being his Mate, and for some reason, it scared me. Enough to make me want to leave the house. I'm sorry I lied to Alice and you." I said to him. He smiled before starting the car again, heading to my house. As he slowed the car, I saw that my dad was already home.
"Your secrets are safe with me, Bella. But may I ask you something?" he asked as I reached for the door. Then, nodding my consent, I waited for him to ask his question.
"Is this really where you want to be right now, Bella?" He asked me.
I shook my head, and he just backed out of the driveway.
"I take it you have questions you could ask me if you want, or I could drive to the hospital for you to ask Carlisle." He asked again. After looking at my hands, I just nodded and indicated that I would like to ask Carlisle if I could.
"Okay, then, let's get you to the doc." He just smiled at me; suddenly, I felt a wave of calm wash over me. My head spun around to look at Jasper; he just chuckled as he headed towards the hospital.
After a few minutes, we pulled up to the hospital, and I got out of the car. I did not realise that Jasper would be walking in with me.
I watched as he walked up to the front desk and asked to see Carlisle.
"Hi there, I'm just here to see my dad. Can you let him know I'm here, please?" He asked with what sounded like a southern drawl. I was honestly surprised.
"Sure thing, just make your way towards his office, and I'll have him paged for you, dear." The woman told him. He just tipped an imaginary hat towards her and pulled me towards our destination.
"Where are you from, Jasper?" I asked him. He smiled and shook his head.
"Texas. I find if I lay on the accent, the ladies are more accommodating. Just don't tell my wife." I laughed, shaking my head.
"Why am I not surprised at that." I smiled. We continued a friendly banter as we made our way toward Carlisle's office, where he was waiting for us.
"Hello, Bella, Jasper, funny seeing you here so soon after leaving the house. How can I help you both?" he asked us as he stood from behind his desk and came up to both of us.
"Well, if you're not too busy, Bella here has a few questions," Jasper said to him. I watched as Carlisle just nodded his head, extending an arm and invited us into his office. He was closing the door behind him.
"Very well, what can I help you with today, Bella?" Carlisle asked me.
"First, I would rather that Edward or Alice do not know about this. Is that possible?" I asked both of them. Jasper just smiled and nodded, as did Carlisle.
"Of course, we all practice keeping Edward out of our minds, as well as we do not have to make any decisions today either that way, Alice will not see what we will be talking about. It can be an inconvenience some of the time." Jasper said to me. I just giggled, like the schoolgirl I was at that.
"Okay, then. I guess firstly I would like to know what happened to Marcus' wife. How did she die?" I asked. The look of shock that overcame his features was immediate before he looked at Jasper. I watched as I saw Jasper shake his head in the negative. He must have gotten asked something.
"What makes you think that she is dead?" Carlisle asked me.
"Nobody looks that morose; well, nobody that has not lost something or someone of great importance," I answered. I heard him sigh as he wiped his hands down his face before answering me.
"His wife, Didyme, was killed, the rumour was that it was her brother that did the deed, but it was a werewolf attack orchestrated by another coven." He told me sadly. I nodded, knowing in my bones that he was telling me the truth.
"Aro, is he crazy?" I asked simply. They both laughed at that.
"No, he is not. Just eccentric." Carlisle smiled.
"Edward says he is my Mate; I need to know if there is a way to confirm this other than just taking his word for it. I have a feeling that I'm not. I'm sorry if he's lonely, but he doesn't need to be. Can't he just have a girlfriend?" I asked him. Jasper just broke out laughing.
"We have been asking ourselves that for decades. Yes, there is a way; he could take you to the Volturi in Italy and take you before Marcus and confirm if you are Mates. But I can tell you that you are not his Mate. My sister can also tell. She was here a few days ago. She confirmed when he told them he found his Mate that he had not. But he would not hear a word of it. I highly doubt that he would take you over there to confirm something he already knows." Jasper said to me. I watched as Carlisle nodded also. Before standing and pacing the floor.
"Bella, how would you feel if we put together a 'meeting' so you could find out for yourself? I could call Aro and request to get called in. Let him know at the same time that Edward has found his mate in a human. Of course, we shouldn't make any decisions about this yet. Would you be willing to fly with us to Italy? If that was what was needed?" he asked me when he suddenly stopped pacing and faced me.
"Yeah, of course. Just let me know when." I said to him, nodding my head enthusiastically.
He pulled out his cell and made the call. He was putting it on speakerphone before placing it on the desk.
"Hello, how did you get this number?" an annoyed voice spoke over the line.
"Aro, old friend, how are you." Carlisle smiled as he talked to the man on the other end of the line.
"Ah, Carlisle, how are you. I am well; how is your lovely family?" Aro asked. Seeming to light at the realisation of who he was talking to on the phone.
"They are all well. I was wondering if I would be able to request to be called in to see you. Edward is under the impression that he has found his Mate, she is with me right now, but there is cause for confusion; I know that he would not willingly come forth as she is human still."
"Of course. So the human girl is aware of the secret then." Aro asked his voice, taking on an air of authority. Carlisle encouraged me to speak when Aro asked about my knowledge.
"Yes, I am aware of and also aware of the law. Edward has told me that much. Hello Aro, my name is Isabella Swan. I prefer Bella, though." I said to the leader.
"Isabella. How lovely. Hello, my dear." Aro spoke. I could hear the suspicion in his voice.
"There is no need to be suspicious of me; I can hear it in your tone of voice," I said, feeling slightly offended; he had never met me, I could understand why he would be, but it didn't stop what I felt.
"Two days, Carlisle, I want to see you all, including Isabella, in two days. I will make the call to the house. As well as keep this call private before I go. Isabella, if I may ask you a question." Aro asked me. I nodded.
"Sure," I answered when I realised he couldn't see me. Jasper just laughed. I slapped him. I don't know what Edward's problem with him was; he was fine.
"I feel I must ask. What brought all of this on?" Aro asked. It seemed like a strange question to ask, but okay.
"I saw a painting in Carlisle's office; I'm meeting Edwards family officially for the first time today. Something in that painting seemed - off - I guess you could say. I know that Marcus looked to be in a great amount of pain, and you looked like you got snowed under with a burden or responsibility, one that you never asked to receive. There was something about Caius, but I couldn't put my finger on it." I said. Drifting off as I thought of the painting.
"Can you make it within the day, Carlisle? Please." I heard Aro say. Changing his mind about the time frame, I got lost in the books that sat behind Carlisle.
"Booked the tickets just now for all eight of us." I heard Jasper say, but his voice sounded far away.
"Fantastic. I will leave to make the call and the necessary arrangements." Aro said before saying his goodbyes and hanging up the phone.
"Bella, are you okay?" I got asked. I got pulled out of my little trance and back to reality.
"Yeah, I'm good. I have to clear things with Charlie." I told both men.
"We can sort that out easily. You know that Alice will see, and they will all think that we are getting spied on. None of them trusts the Volturi at all." Jasper said.
"Why? Aren't they just trying to uphold the law?" I asked. Jasper just smiled at me.
"Yes, they are. The Volturi are not bad like some believe they are. But there is an ornate distrust when one of our kind hears their name, especially if you have something to hide. Two of the leaders are gifted. Aro can see every thought you have ever had with a single touch, and Marcus can see bonds. He can tell if a pair is Mated. If Edward thinks you are his Mate, and Marcus sees it's true, then it is. But you would feel it also. There are tells. Your whole world gets turned on its head, and nothing matters but that person; your entire being exists to protect that person, and the love that you feel for them is all-encompassing. Nothing and nobody could come between you. They feel warm to the touch, other than cold and hard. every thought you have about them near enough makes you giddy." Jasper said, smiling. I had to laugh at that; it sounded beautiful. But that was not what I experienced.
"And all I felt was an electric jolt," I said more to myself. But the look of horror that crossed the two men's faces scared me.
"Bella, that's not good, that is an indication of danger, the fact that you are his singer is a danger alone, the jolt was trying to warn you away from him. Would you mind calling your father and asking to stay tonight with Rosalie?" Carlisle asked me; I nodded. He pushed the phone towards me not long after I heard him answer.
"Hello." He said gruffly. He must be watching a game. Jasper showed me a piece of paper that asked me to tell him we were shopping this whole weekend. Maybe in LA.
"Hi dad, it's just me. Rosalie asked if I could stay the night, would you mind? She wants to take me shopping this weekend in Seattle." I asked him as I let him know her plans. I watched as Carlisle texted a message out on his phone and watched as Jasper did the same. I thought that somewhere closer might be more acceptable with Charlie.
"Hi kiddo, yeah, that sounds fine. Do you need to pick up anything?" Charlie asked me.
"Yeah, I will. I'll be home in a little bit to pick a few things up." I told him. I knew he would be glad that I was making friends here.
"Okay, kiddo, if I'm not here, I'll be down at Billy's place; we are going to watch the game there this weekend." He told me. I could feel a tradition in the making.
"Okay then," I answered before saying goodbye and hanging up.
"I'll take you home to pick up your passport and whatever else you may need. Alice just texts saying that the Volturi have called us all in. They want to see you also and that Edward is throwing a fit." Carlisle said to me. I just chuckled and nodded my head.
"I text Rose and let her know that you want to try and get to know her and asked to spend some time. I hope that's okay." Jasper asked me. I just nodded. I did want to get to know her anyway. I know that she disliked me, but I hoped to get past that and become friends.
"Thanks, I was hoping to be able to get to know her a bit better anyway," I said.
"Why is he throwing a fit? Wouldn't he want to know for a fact if I was his Mate? Or is it a case of he doesn't want to get found out?" I asked. He said to me that day when he was trying to prove; he was the big fierce Vampire; that came to mind.
"Is it because I am his brand of heroin?" I asked quietly.
"Bella, whatever happens, will happen; I don't think he will do anything rash," Carlisle said to me. But, unfortunately, it did not inspire copious amounts of confidence.
Once Jasper took me home to get what I needed, we made our way back to the Cullen residence, where Rosalie greeted me; she didn't look as suspicious as she had done.
"Did you pick your father up?" she asked me.
"He got a ride home with one of his deputies. I just wanted to say thanks for letting me spend some time with you. I was hoping that we could try and at least be friends." I said to her, honestly. She smiled at me before pulling me into a hug and surprising me. Also, surprising Emmett.
I heard Edward in the background upstairs, followed by a lot of destruction.
"What's going on up there?" I asked her.
"We have all gotten called to Volterra; they have also heard about you; Emmett thinks we have a spy. But Edward doesn't want you anywhere near them." She told me. I just nodded.
"Why?" I asked.
"Bella, they are the ruling coven in our world. Therefore, they will most likely demand that you be changed." She told me. She was looking sad.
"Oh, okay. When do the Volturi want to see you?" I asked her.
"Very soon. But how about we get to know each other a little." She said, changing the subject, smiling at me.
"I would love that," I said; she took my hand and led me out the back door and across the backyard over to a little garden area. It was beautiful, there looked to be at least seven different types of flowers in the garden, and a new one just planted. She indicated that we would be far enough away that whatever we talked about would be kept private. The family always tried to keep private conversations, just that, private and made a point to try and not listen in. So we were safe from prying ears.
"So, what would you like to know?" I asked her; Smiling. I felt like I could connect with her, unlike I could see anyone else. Like I could spill all my darkest secrets to her, and she would keep it in the most sacred of confidences.
"What were you like growing up?" she asked. I smiled and shook my head.
"I didn't have much of a childhood. I had to raise my mom, even more so after our accident. She didn't cope well. We moved around a lot. I never really stayed in one place too long; always been kind of a loner. I never really fit in with anyone. Fancy my luck when I move in with my dad and find that I fit in perfectly with your family." I said, laughing. I watched as a smile graced Rose's face also.
"What accident was she in?" Rose asked me.
"We were in a car accident, my mom was pretty cut up, I was anxious about her, but I was hurt worse." I pulled down the front of my jeans to just below my pantie line and showed her the still healing scar.
"I got the brunt of the damage, the car door slammed into me, and I have no idea how but one of the inner tubes got pushed through the metal and me when the side of the car got hit, it only just missed my spine thankfully, but took away my ability ever to have children," I said with a sigh. I don't know why I was telling her this; Charlie didn't even know about the accident, nobody but mom and Phil knew about it.
"How long ago did this happen? I can see you're still healing, so I don't think it could have been that long, but how long ago?" she asked me quietly.
"Two months ago." I nearly whispered. She pulled me to her and held me, wiping tears away that I hadn't realised were falling.
"I promised my mom if I came here, I would let dad know, I made her promise me that she would let me tell him, but I can't. I haven't been able to walk again for very long; frankly, just walking around the school has been a bit too much. The Physio said that I shouldn't even be back at school yet. I don't know why I'm telling you all this; I haven't told anyone." I whispered again, feeling the tears starting to once again fall from my eyes. I knew I had not come to terms with the accident. I always thought I never wanted kids, but now I never had the chance even to consider it.
"You need to tell him. If you want, I can be there with you. I know how hard it is, I wanted kids myself, but my fiancé at the time, Royce, he and his friends raped me while I was on my way home from my friend's house; they left me for dead in the alleyway, Carlisle found me, bleeding and near death, he changed me. I never forgave him for doing that. I always felt that he should have just let me die. But, instead, I got my revenge on Royce and his friends. I'm sorry you went through all of that, but Bella, you do need to tell your dad. I can tell you right now, one day he is going to want grandkids; if you don't tell him, you may end up regretting that choice. So please, tell him." Rosalie said, imploring me. I nodded, and she gave me her phone.
"Call him and ask him to come home. I will take you there, and you can tell him." Rosalie said with a gentle smile. I dialled his number; he picked up on the third ring.
"Hello, Chief Swan speaking," Charlie said.
"Hi dad, it's me. Can you meet me at home, please? I need to talk to you." I said to him quietly.
"On my way, Bells. Is everything okay?" He asked, sounding worried. "I'll tell you when I see you at home," I told him. We hung up, and I gave Rosalie her phone back.
"Come on, do you want me to stay with you?" she asked.
"Please, if you wouldn't mind," I whispered. Edward came out of the house as Rosalie, and I made it to the garage.
"Bella, Emmett needs to see Rosalie, so I'll take you home." He said to me.
I was about to refuse his offer when Rosalie spoke up.
"Emmett can wait. I will take her home. You will stay here until we return, Edward." Rosalie sneered towards him.
I watched as Jasper and Emmett came up behind Edward.
"Keep him here until Bella, and I return, Alice, also please, this is just between her and me," Rosalie said to her husband and twin. They just nodded and restrained Edward.
Alice came out, hugged me, and told me everything would be fine.
It took three hours before we returned. Carlisle had returned home by that time and let them all know he had a few days off.
Charlie was a mess when I told him the news. He even called my mom to verify. He was glad I was alive and asked what had happened to the other guy. But, unfortunately, this was something I didn't know.
He asked if I still wanted to go through with my plans or if I wanted to stay home.
I wanted to go, carry on as usual. Charlie nodded and pulled me close, hugging me for the longest time, telling me how sorry he was; I had never seen my dad this upset; I had considered staying just to make sure that he was okay. I even asked if that's what he wanted me to do, that I would do it for him. But, instead, Charlie seemed to insist that I do what I needed to do. I told him that I was sorry that he would never have grandkids.
"None of that matters, Bells. All that matters to me is that you are alive and that you are safe and healthy. If you want kids later on down the line, there are other ways around it. But right now, it's you. You are my daughter, my pride and joy; nothing matters if you are hurt. I wish I had known when it happened. I would have come down to be there for you and your mother." Charlie said to me while holding my face between his hands; I found myself crying and telling him how sorry I was. He asked about my therapy, and I told him the truth, that they didn't think I should be going to school yet as I needed more work done beforehand, that I was in constant pain due to having to walk so much even if it was between classes. Charlie told me that I would be pulled out of school for a while until I was ready. Rosalie shocked me and told Charlie and me that Carlisle had a friend that specialised in victims like me and that this friend owed Carlisle a favour; Charlie jumped on it and asked if he could set up a meeting.
"That's the thing, Carlisle was going to see him this weekend while we stayed here. He lives in Italy and doesn't travel out of the country; we would have to take Bella to see him there." Rosalie said to Charlie.
"Do you have a passport, Bells?" he asked me. I just nodded.
"Then do you think that he will mind taking her with him? It wouldn't be too much of a bother, would it?" Charlie asked Rosalie. She just shook her head, smiled, and told him that it would be no problem at all. After that, he sent me on up to my room with Rosalie to pack some things while he rang Carlisle to make sure that it was really alright.
It seemed to be such a whirlwind that noting much seemed really to register with me after that. Things were moving so fast, not long after, we found ourselves in a private plane on our way to Volterra, Italy.
"It's going to be fine, Bella; I won't let the Volturi hurt you. I will protect you." Edward said to me as he came to sit down next to me. He had started to make me uncomfortable.
"Eddie, can I talk to you for a minute, please?" Emmett called from towards the back of the plane. He sighed and got up. Not even a minute later, Jasper, Alice, Rosalie came to sit with me.
"I have to remember to thank Emmett for that." I smiled at Rosalie.
"I asked him too. I could see Jaspers growing discomfort." She said to me pointedly. Then it clicked. He had felt that from me. So I sent an emotional apology to him, and he just smiled at me.
"Bella, I know we haven't had much time to get to know each other, but I just know we are going to be fast friends now that you are Edwards Mate," Alice said to me. I wanted to growl at her; I knew that I was not his Mate.
"What makes you think that I'm his Mate, Alice? I could; I don't know, be the Mate of Caius for all we know." I said to her pointedly. I had no idea why I named him, but now it was out. It just felt right. I was excited to meet the Vampire Royal family. I wanted to be able to talk to them, find out about their history. I loved that shit.
"I've seen it silly. You're to be with Edward." She smiled at me.
We all talked; they all stayed where they were, and that pissed Edward right off when he came back from talking to Emmett. So he asked Jasper to move and got declined.
"We are having a nice conversation. We are getting to know our new sister. You cannot keep monopolising her time." Jasper said to Edward. I just wanted to laugh when he looked at me like his lollypop had just gotten taken away from him. I even heard him let out a whimper and whine. I couldn't help but shake my head at his childishness.
"Jasper, we really should let Edward sit next to his Mate," Alice said to Jasper, who was sitting next to me. I just looked out the window and tried not to panic, with the thought of Edward sitting next to me.
I must have fallen asleep, it was nine hours later, and we arrived at the Volturi's private airstrip. We got escorted into what I could only describe as a large lounge by a giant man who seriously reminded me of Emmett, but bigger. A few guards were sitting around as well as some modern music playing somewhere off in the distance. I must have looked confused.
"Ah Carlisle, how are you? I instructed Felix to bring you here when he met you at the plane; I thought that you might like a greeting in a more relaxed setting." The man I recognised from Carlisle's painting as Aro told him.
"Thank you, old friend. Please let me introduce you to my family; this is my lovely wife and Mate, Esme, my children, Jasper and his wife Alice, Emmett and his wife Rosalie and Edward, and this lovely young lady is our Isabella." Carlisle introduced us all; it did not escape notice that I presented as nothing connected to Edward. I inwardly smiled at that, even though I heard both Edward and Alice growl.
"How lovely it is to meet you all. Please, if you would follow me, we will be meeting up with my brother, Marcus; he has been most anxious to meet you all." Aro said to us; I had to smile at that. As I moved to follow him, I was picked up by Jasper and carried to follow. He just smiled at me sadly. Before whispering in my ear that Rose told him I was exhausted. And that he had also felt that I was too. I nodded and thanked him before looking over to Rosalie and nodding my thanks. She just smiled at me. She was mouthing to me, asking if I was okay. I decided to be honest and just shook my head. She nodded, frowning at my reply.
The walk to meet up with the other King was very short compared to how it could have been. I watched as Aro opened the door and invited us inside.
"Marcus, our guests have arrived. Isn't that exciting!" Aro said with fake enthusiasm.
"Yes, it is." Marcus smiled, but it wasn't a genuine smile; it was pained. He looked at us all closely when he looked at me; Marcus raised his eyebrows; before he could say anything, I heard a growl, and I got ripped away from Jasper.
"NO! She is MINE! She is my prize for being so controlled. MY Mate!" Edward yelled.
"Alec" is all that was said; before I knew it, I was getting dropped, and I couldn't help but scream out in pain as I landed on my still healing wound on my back — feeling that a couple of the stitches pulled. I didn't have long to think about any of it before everything went black.
In my study listening to music, I went over all of the latest requests from all the other covens. I have been doing this for the last few days. I had not seen my brothers for the last week. I knew that Aro was up to something, but I could not be bothered to find out what it was. He always seemed to be up to something that one. I swear, I should have thought twice about turning that one as I was about to start on the next batch of requests when Demetri barged into my study, apologising for interrupting me.
"Master Caius, the Cullen's have arrived, and Master Aro and Master Marcus would like for you to meet them in Master Marcus' study if you would please," Demetri said with a look of worry gracing his face. Sighing, I stood, grabbing my robe before following Demetri down to my brothers' study. Looking towards Aro as I walked in, expecting him to let me know what was going on. Looking around, I saw Carlisle and his family standing around as Alec was using his gift on Carlisle's first companion, as well as a tiny young boy who, for some reason, was wearing a dress.
"Why have you called me in here, brothers?" I asked. Looking over to Marcus, he kept looking at me and over to the human he cared for. What was so special about this wisp of a human? I could not see anything special about this human.
"Carlisle, you may want to tend the bleeding human," I said, wondering why the human was not being dealt with already. I watched as his eye's widened before he rushed over to her. He hurried over to her as soon as Marcus stepped out of the way.
"Carlisle, her stitches could have pulled." A young blonde Vampiress told him; he just seemed to look at her with confusion. I rolled my eyes and walked over. I gently turned the human on her side, exposing the wound before turning her once again to her stomach so she could get treated.
"Thank you, Caius." Carlisle nodded towards me.
"Brother, Young Edward here had to get restrained from attacking his young human Mate; I asked Alec to restrain him," Aro informed me. I growled instinctively; when it registered with is me, I stopped instantly.
"Impossible, Mates are incapable of hurting each other in any way," I replied before taking a seat.
"Alec, if you will," I said with a wave of my hand. Seconds later, the child was back with us.
"Who is it you think you Mated to," I asked.
"Bella," Edward answered.
"Then why did you attack your Mate?" I asked.
"She is mine." Edward sneered.
"Marcus, is this true?" I just wished this finished.
"No, Young Edward and the human, Isabella Swan, are not Mated. Although her Mate is here, in this room even." Marcus spoke, looking towards me.
"Very well. There, you have the truth of the matter now leave. Make sure you do so after nightfall. Also, the human is to change within twenty-four hours of your return." I said, my ruling final. Standing, I walked out and headed back towards my office; I had paperwork to finish after all.
"No, I will not turn her. She will never change!" I heard the child yelling. Turning, I made my way back to my brothers.
"You are refusing a direct order?" I asked the child. Who seemed only to be able to growl at me, grabbing him by the throat; I pulled him to his feet.
"Be careful, child; you may be forfeiting your existence if you keep this up. I am not known for my patience." I snarled at the insolent youngling.
"You will not take from me; that is mine." The child growled. I proceeded to remove his head from his body and then the rest of his limbs until he earned my mercy.
"Caius, please. Reconsider this. He knows not what he does; he is but young and foolish." Carlisle pleaded with me.
"No, this insolent child needs to learn his lesson," I told him. So I indicted Alec to take the child.
"Take him down to the holding cells," I instructed. He nodded and picked up the child's head and body, following my orders. I looked over to both of my brothers, waiting for either of them to Contest my ruling.
Thankfully neither did so. The complaints from the smallest Cullen was starting to aggravate me; her constant complaints about the cruelty of the Volturi, and the one that caused me to laugh, was her complaint about Marcus' faulty gift.
"You sincerely believe my brother's gift faulty? What are your reasons?" I asked, making my way to stand in front of her.
"Bella is Edward's Mate; I've seen it." the child informed me, raising her nose.
"Your name, child," I said, tiring of this nonsense.
"Alice Cullen," she said with pride.
"Well, Miss Cullen, my brother has never been wrong, not only that I know your gift, it relies heavily on decisions; it is subjective at best. SO there is every chance you are wrong. I would not be so confident in your gift, youngling." I sneered as I bent to look her directly in the eyes.
I decided then I would take the human away from this irritating Pixie. I had already taken note of Carlisle finishing with her, so I picked her up, taking her to my quarters to rest while she recovered. Six hours later, the young human girl started to stir back to life.
Calling Jane, I asked her to go to one of the local restaurants and acquire food for the human; she left without argument. Thirty minutes later, she knocked on my door, handing me the foul-smelling bag. I thanked her as the human sat up in my bed.
"You're finally awake and well, from the looks of you. I ordered something for you to eat." I told her, indicating the small table in my reading nook, as I carried on with the requests that had passed my desk, not once since the human had awoken, I had bothered looking at her, I, in no way, wanted her to think this was going to get repeated. The best way I had discovered was to show disinterest. Feed them, then send them on their way, which was precisely my plan.
"Thank you, Your Highness. If it pleases you, I could take the generous offering and go and find the Cullen's." She said. I nodded and once again called Jane to take her to meet with them, dismissing her with a single wave.
The young girl that was escorting me didn't talk much; I had learned when the King called for her that her name had been Jane.
When I attempted to talk to her, she ignored me. We finally made it to one of the Cullen's room's; as I turned to thank her, she was no longer next to me. As I knocked on the door, it opened before I could lower my hand.
"Bella! You're okay. Thank god, how are you feeling?" I got asked; looking around, I saw everyone other than Edward in the room. Rosalie sped over to me and picked me up, carrying me to the setting area, telling me to eat.
"Hi, where is Edward?" I asked, looking around at everyone.
"My brother was decapitated. Because of you. Are you happy?" Alice snarled at me.
Her tone honestly surprised me.
"Excuse me? How? What?" I attempted to speak — a great time to be at a loss for words, Bella. I castigated myself.
"After his attack, Caius came in; Marcus got asked if the two of you were Mates, he answered no, but your Mate was in the room at the time. Edward had been under Alec's power, was pulled from its influence, the brothers ruled that you were not Mates, but within twenty-four hours of our return, we must change you. Edward became insolent, Caius warned him, he kept going, so he took Edwards head and limbs, sending him to a holding cell." Carlisle told me.
Alice chose that moment to lunge at me.
I waited for the force to connect, but it never did. Instead, Emmett and Jasper took her out of the room. Then, Esme informed me they would take her hunting.
"Bella, I would like to ask you a few questions if I can," Carlisle said, sitting in front of me.
"I'll try and answer them," I said to him.
"The wounds, they are at least a couple of months old, but they should have at least healed if not mostly healed by now," Carlisle said to me. I just nodded.
"Not quite two months. Yes. Mostly." I told him. He nodded.
"What led to this, Bella?" Carlisle asked me. I looked around to see Rosalie come to sit next to me. She was taking my hand.
"It's okay. Carlisle's not going to judge you. No one is." She said as she wiped my cheek.
"I was in a car accident two months ago. They took care of most of the internal damage; they told mom I would never walk again. But clearly, I am. They tried to save my uterus, but there was too much damage; I will never have children. Something that I'm still coming to terms with, I still have trouble walking, but I'm trying to be as normal as I can so I can be a normal teenager." I told both of them quietly.
We talked for a while, Carlisle wanting to know what exactly happened, how extensive the surgeries were, all the while I had gone back to finish the food that someone kindly brought for me. Then, three hours later, Emmett and Jasper came back from hunting with Alice. As soon as she walked in the door and saw me, she was growling. I watched as Jasper rolled his eyes at her before I watched her drop to the ground.
"You couldn't have done that earlier, man?" Emmett said to him. I watched as Jasper just shrugged. Before walking away and leaving her lying on the floor.
I was just about to head off to bed for the evening when there was a knock on the door, Carlisle walking over to answer it.
"The Master would like to see you, with the Major and the human," Jane said before walking away, having given the message.
I was just glad that I had not gotten changed yet.
"Do you mind if I carry you, Bella?" Jasper asked me. Before I finished shaking my head, he had me picked up, and we were on our way towards meeting with the Kings. As we stopped outside the door, he placed me on my feet to all walk in together.
"Hello, friends. We are glad that you could all join us this evening." Aro said to us all. I was looking at my feet as we walked into his office, making sure that I wouldn't trip on anything in my overly tired state.
"Yeah, well, can we get a move on? Humans need to sleep." I thought to myself.
"We hope that we will not take up much of your time, young Isabella." Aro smiled as I looked up.
"Huh?" I answered. Word of mouth communication didn't happen when sleep deprived.
"You said that out loud," Jasper told me.
"Fuck. I got to remember just to think shit." I told myself.
"Please have a seat," Marcus said, smiling at me. I nodded and walked over to a seat and dumped myself down.
"We wanted to meet up with the three of you to continue the discussion we had on the phone," Aro said to the three of us.
"That is fine. What would you like to know?" Carlisle asked them.
"Firstly, Isabella. What are your thoughts when you saw the three of us in that painting in Carlisle's office?" Aro asked me.
"Sad, Mask and Fuckable," I said like it was the most natural thing in the world and that I was stating the obvious.
"Can you clarify, please?" Aro asked, trying not to laugh. Jasper was having no such luck, and Carlisle looked horrified but amused.
"Well, he looked like he lost someone of great importance, you look like your outward persona is nothing but a ruse, and the burden of responsibility that you feel is starting to take its toll. And you look like you are in desperate need of a fantastic fuck to get that giant carrot out of your ass. Is that clear enough?" I asked, raising my eyebrow. Aro seemed to laugh as he looked over towards his platinum blonde brother.
"Are you offering young human?" Caius asked me. I just smiled. I was taking note of how he kept looking at the papers in his hands.
"Any time poo bear," I told him as my eyebrows took on a life of their own. Not that he would see what I was doing anyway.
"Anyhow, back to the topic at hand. Isabella, how did you come to the conclusions that you did?" Marcus asked me.
"I don't know, I just looked at the painting, and I just knew. I had to make an excuse about having to pick up dad from the station because his cruiser had to get serviced. Anyway, as comfy as I am here, I need sleep, so if you wouldn't mind, can Jasper here take me to bed so I can get some sleep? I can answer your questions tomorrow if that's okay." I looked around. Before I nodded, standing. And I was grabbing Jasper's hand, indicating that I would like to leave.
"Please, Jasper," I asked. Before he could answer, I watched as Caius stood and sped over to me, picking me up and racing out the door. Closing my eyes for the run back to the room, I ended up falling asleep.
As I woke up the next day, I found myself in a room I recognised; it seemed I was once again waking in Caius' bed. No idea why exactly I was here. Or how I got here if I was honest. But I did know that I was glad that I still was dressed when looking under the covers, if not slightly disappointed. I had to think about what I said last night; I knew I got a little sarcastic and sassy when I didn't have much sleep. But half of the time, it was a little on the blurry side; it's like my brain shuts off and goes to sleep, leaving my mouth to have a mind of its own. So I threw the covers back and went to find a bathroom. Once I had my morning routine taken care of, I came out of the bathroom just to find Caius standing next to the bed.
"Morning." He said to me with a smile.
"I came to let you know that I have had your breakfast delivered to your room. When you are ready to eat." He told me as he picked up the book on the side table before walking out of the room.
Sighing, I left the room. I was making my way slowly back to the Cullen's suite. But, unfortunately, my day was not starting well. By the time I got to the Cullen's room, I could hardly stay standing, knocking on the door, watching as it opened for me to see Rosalie standing in front of me.
"Carlisle, help, please," Rosalie called out as she caught me as I fell. She brought me into the room, laying me on the couch.
"What happened, Bella?" Carlisle asked me.
"Bad day. I walked here." I whispered out. He nodded.
"I'm going to get you something for the pain, ok, sweetheart?" he smiled at me.
"I can help there, Carlisle." I heard Jasper say as I closed my eyes and tried breathing through the pain.
"Thank you, son," Carlisle said to him. I felt my hand getting picked up before my pain started to leave my body.
"Thank you, Jasper," I whispered out.
"What happened after Caius took you last night?" Jasper asked, looking cheeky.
"What do you mean?" I asked.
"You got all sassy, telling him that he needed a fantastic fuck to remove the giant carrot out of his ass before you told the Kings that you were off to get some sleep and Caius swept you up and took off with you as I started to stand to bring you back here. So you could get some sleep." He told me. I heard Emmett laughing off to my left.
"You told one of our rulers he needed to get laid?" Emmett laughed out.
"Apparently. My brain to mouth communication tends to separate when I get too tired." I groaned out. I felt a prick on my arm when I looked over; Carlisle was there giving me some pain medication. It wasn't long before the drug took over, and Jasper pulled his gift back.
"What's wrong with you? Are you trying to get everyone to feel sorry for you?" I heard Alice ask me.
"Nothing is wrong, Alice, and no, I'm not." I can't deal with this; I should just get a ticket home and leave. So I tried to get up so that I could go and pack.
"About time. I set everything up for you, and you just throw it all away." Alice said to me. I slowly made my way to my bedroom, picking up my purse and passport. I would leave everything else.
"I'm going to have a look at the little shops in town. I need some time alone. Thank you, Carlisle, for the meds." I smiled as I made my way out of the door. As I made my way out of the castle, I walked into Aro.
"Sorry, Your Highness. Please excuse me." I whispered. I moved out of his way and carried on.
I could feel Aro looking at me as I walked away, trying to move as fast as I could.
I made it to the reception area before I had to sit down to rest for a while before I carried on. Laying on the sofa, I closed my eyes and curled up, waiting for my discomfort to ease a little more.
"What the hell do you mean you set everything up for her? Alice, what the hell have you done?" I asked my wife.
"I knew about her before she moved to Forks. I wouldn't let that little bitch ruin everything that I have built for us, Jasper. I knew that she would be perfect for Edward, so I set it up that they would meet. The fact that she is his singer is honestly a bonus. But he should have just drained her. That way, we wouldn't be here, and Caius would never have found his Mate." I watched as her eye became wide when she realised what she had said. So Bella is the Mate of one of our Kings. She would meet her death for keeping them apart.
"You realise that you have signed your death, knowingly keeping Mates apart." I heard from behind me. Turning, I was face to face with Aro. He called for Demetri and Alec to come and restrain my wife and take her to a holding cell. He took her hand before she left with the two guards.
"Major, I don't know if you were aware, but she was not your Mate. She was using you for your reputation." Aro told me. I nodded to him, letting him know that I knew of this.
"I know that's what she was doing," I told him.
"Good." He smiled before leaving. I had no idea what the point was of him just turning up in our suite like this. I needed to go and try and find Bella, though.
Walking out of the room, I tried to pick up her scent but couldn't seem to pick it up at the minute.
Four hours later, I still had not found her; I went searching all over town before I searched all through the castle, well the area's that were permitted for us to go, and still no sign of her. I went out to the reception area, asking if the receptionist had seen her; she had not seen anyone. I needed to find Carlisle. If Bella had gone missing here of all places, it would not be a good thing.
Once I found him, I let him know what was going on; he would ask Aro for help finding her.
I had found the little human asleep in reception. I decided to go to town to buy more clothes and more formal items for when in the throne room. I could have gotten Heidi to go and do my shopping as Aro and Marcus did; I seemed always to prefer to get my clothing, at least it would not be something that another thought I should wear. I was just passing Gianna's desk when I heard a second heartbeat coming from the sofa in the lobby — walking over to see Isabella lying there. Picking her up, I once again took her to my quarters so that she could rest. I had no idea why I was drawn to the human, but I had felt her pain when Isabella left me this morning; I also felt it leave her body not long ago. I watched as she hissed when I picked her up; she was still in pain. Sighing, and speeding towards my quarters, once there, I placed her down and made sure that she was as comfortable as she could be.
I was taking off her shoes. I sat at the foot of the bed like I had each time she had slept here and rubbed her feet; before moving up and massaging the muscles in her legs and hips, I discovered that she had been in an accident that should have left her unable to walk, so I wanted to make sure that I could do something for her. Isabella struggled to make it back to the Cullen's suit this morning, only just getting there before she fell into the arms of Carlisle's blonde daughter, Rosalie. Feeling her pain hit its peak. I knew when Carlisle had given her something for her pain. But, as much as I knew that he looked to her as a daughter, it did not help at all.
I did not even know anything about this young woman; I had not yet seen her look at me once. But I felt a pull to this woman. I could ask Marcus if my curiosity was correct, that she could be mine, my Mate. I enjoyed knowing that I was doing something to help this young woman. I enjoyed the feel of her skin under my hands; I even found her mere presence calming. Though I did want to find out why she was in so much pain at the moment, I wanted to know if it was anything that I could fix for her and why she was bleeding when I first encountered her. I was able to turn her over after I finished massaging her feet and legs to start gently rubbing her lower back for her, as I needed to make sure she was comfortable after all. I took my time before I just sat and waited for her to wake. Like I had the last couple of times.
Two hours later, she did. Instantly I could tell something wasn't right.
"What has you upset, Isabella?" I asked her.
"I keep waking up here. I just want to go home. Had I known that another would run my life when I moved to Forks, I would never have moved there. I don't even like Edward, for god sake, but for some reason, whenever he was around, it was like I couldn't control what I thought or said. Now I come here, and I kept finding myself waking up in this room. I try to leave but can't make it beyond the reception. I just want to go home, please; if I'm not allowed to leave, then just kill me already." Finally, she finished her rant and started to cry. I go towards her picking her up and just holding the small woman, trying to bring her as much comfort as she has brought me in this short time.
"You don't have to do anything; I would like it if you didn't leave, though. Not a single soul here will harm you. I would like you to clarify what you mean regarding Edward, though, if you would please." I asked her gently.
"Alice saw me moving to Forks, she set everything up for me, she got mad thinking I was just going to throw it all away. I don't even know why I'm with Edward. He's not my type at all. So why do I end up here all the time?" she asked me. She was finally looking at me. I couldn't believe that chocolate could be the most beautiful of colours.
"I found you," I whispered. I smiled. I had finally found my Mate. She was the one to lift my soul.
"Found me where?" she asked, sounding curious.
"I found you in the reception area, and I brought you back here to rest. You looked like you were in discomfort." I said, breaking away from her gaze. I was thrilled that I had finally found her.
"Why are you in pain?" I asked her.
"I was in a car accident two months ago. Had to have a couple of surgeries, still, haven't recovered fully." She told me. I just nodded.
"I would be happy to help you in your recovery if you would allow me," I said to her. I watched as her eyebrows shot towards her hairline in surprise.
"I can't, thank you, though." She said shyly. I was pulling her chin up so that she was looking at me again.
"I would be happy to help you. please." I asked. I smiled, hoping that I could convince her. Instead, she sighed as she chuckled. She finally agreed to let me help her.
"Thank you. I will need to get you out of those jeans, though." I told her before bursting out, laughing at the look on her face.
"I will not do anything untoward. I just want to massage your legs and the affected area, if you will let me." I asked her. Not letting her know that I had already done this, but only with her fully clothed.
Even though I would have liked to take her clothes off even then, I waited for her to decide if she would let me do this or not. After nearly 10 minutes, she finally nodded her agreement. Getting off of the bed myself and asked her just to lay down. I repeated what I had done earlier, started to massage her feet, hoping that she would relax enough that I could help her properly.
Thankfully it worked.
"Thank you for making this easier." She told me before she moaned that the more relaxed Isabella got, the more she would be open to being partially undressed before me. I was not going to be complaining either, which may.
"Are you ready?" I asked as my hands stilled at the waistband of her jeans; she bit her bottom lip before nodding her head.
I quickly undid her jeans, pulling them off, leaving her in her unexpectedly sexy red lace panties.
"I'm just going to do the same as what I just did, alright. So you know what to expect." So I told Isabella before I started all over again, this time using a little more pressure than before.
I slowly made my way up her legs once more; the only difference this time was that I licked my palms, so I could massage my venom into her still-healing body, paying close attention to her hips, abdomen, and once she turned over onto her back.
When my hands came in contact with the first scar, she hissed out in pain. Once again, I licked the palms of my hands and concentrated on her. It seemed she had the most trouble with her hips and right side of her back.
I spent nearly four hours slowly massaging my Isabella, only when she no longer hissed out in pain and discomfort did I finally stop; she laid there on my bed for a while before she got up and pulled her jeans, socks, and shoes back on.
"Thank you, Your Highness. Whatever you did seemed to help. Thank you." She said before looking awkward.
"You can leave if you like," I told her, realising that she would more than likely leave this town, leave the country and go back to her home; she looked shocked but thanked me again before walking out of my quarters.
I just hoped that she would stay.
I watched from my window as she made her way out of the Castle, seeing a cab pull up before she got in and drove off.
I heard a knock on the door as I stood at the window, watching my Mate leave.
"Brother, the Cullen's are looking for their human; I thought I could smell her around your quarters. Have you seen her by chance?" Aro asked me.
"Yes. Isabella was here; I do not know where she is now, though. Sorry." I told him.
"Thank you," Aro said before hearing him close the door. I debated telling him to send them home, but I wasn't sure if I wanted them to bother Isabella anymore.
I felt the pain in my chest grow the further away from me she went. I decided to change and make my way into the throne room to deal with the lower class that came before us for our ruling on whatever topic. I saw seven nomads while my brothers occupied themselves with the Cullen's. All of them looking for death. All of which I granted. My brothers joined me when it was time to judge the two Cullen children.
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