A/N Last chapter guys.
The stay at Jasper and Alice's was longer than any of them had anticipated, and the cramped quarters were starting to irritate everyone. Emmett took it upon himself to build a tree house a mile or so away and, surprisingly, Ash, Phoenix and Rosalie all turned out to help, mostly out of boredom.
Alice was getting vague glimpses of Anastasia, but everything was so chaotic and jumbled that she couldn't even get a face, just a head of golden brown hair. Jasper, uncomfortable with leaving Alice alone, hardly ever left her side.
It was nearly four months after the battle when the Cullens, plus Ash and Phoenix, were spending a quiet night together. Ash and Phoenix were playing a game of cards, while Emmett and Bella were engaged in a lively game of Trivial Pursuit when Alice suddenly froze and gasped. Jasper was at her side instantly.
"Oh god," she whispered. Edward hissed and ran out the door. Everyone looked around, confused. "She's coming." Edward was suddenly back in the room.
"She's already here," he reported. Emmett was on his feet in a second, followed closely by Ash, Phoenix, and Rosalie. Bella looked torn. She'd been taught fighting by Ash, Phoenix, Jasper and even Emmett, but she'd never actually had to test it.
"What is she doing? What's her plan?" Jasper asked.
"I don't know, I can't see!" she hissed.
"She's close," Edward said, standing in the doorway. "I can see her."
"What do we do?" Carlisle asked Jasper.
"We stand together," Jasper said immediately. "I don't know what she hopes to accomplish, but we must not get separated." They filed outside and stood in a line. A small girl, barely 14, walked forward, her honey brown hair glistened as she moved. Even in the moonlight. She stopped barely twenty feet from the Cullen line. If the fact that she was alone bothered her, she didn't show it.
"Lovely. We're all here," she said in her sing-song voice. Her eyes hardened on Ash and Phoenix. "So glad you hung around."
"She's jealous," Edward said suddenly. "She's jealous of love. She doesn't understand it and is jealous of all of us." Anastasia hissed at them.
"Why are you here?" Jasper asked. Anastasia twisted her smile.
"Well I'm so glad you asked," she sang. "You see, as intrigued as I am by you all, you should also know I'm a bit selfish. Sort of like a child really. If I can't have you my way, you won't exist, period."
"How do you propose to do that?" Jasper asked. Anastasia wasn't an idiot, she wouldn't be here without a plan.
"I'm debating," she said, staring at her fingernail before returning her attention to them. "I could always make a complaint with the Volturi, they're always interested in paying you a little visit. Or I can hail some friends of mine with similar interests as myself."
Alice shuddered minutely and Edward winced at the images in Anastasia's mind.
"But for now, I'm content with this." She turned and whistled. From the tree line, a vampire, her shield, came with a frightened and blindfolded man. Alice and Bella gasped as the recognized him as Charlie.
"What do you hope to achieve with this?" Carlisle asked.
"Well I could always turn him," Anastasia said idly. Bella growled. "But I do love my games, so here's what I propose. I'll release the human, if you win."
"Premise?" Phoenix prompted.
"It's simple," Anastasia said. "If one of you can fight, and beat, Antony here, your human may be released. If not, he dies and I pull every string I can to rain all hell down on all of you."
Edward whispered so only those close to him could hear. "Antony is almost a complete blank slate. He has no conscience, or personality. A basic attack dog."
"Take your time," Anastasia called, running a finger down Charlie's face. Alice's hand twitched.
"I will do it," Ash said, stepping forward. Edward read the feral's thoughts and nodded. Anastasia motioned Antony forward. Ash stalked forward and the others were struck again by just how imposing she was. Antony was nearly a foot taller and almost twice as wide. A few Cullens shifted uncomfortably.
Antony lunged. He was fast, nearly as fast as Edward. But he wasn't as vicious at Ash, so the fight was oddly matched. A particularly harsh blow sent Ash skidding back to Jasper. She had time to hiss something at him before launching back at Antony, a small tree in her hands. Jasper paced around the sides of the fight, surveying the scene. Anastasia did the same, though she was careful not to move too far from the captive Charlie.
Ash threw Antony by his arm, splitting a tree in two. Anastasia turned in surprise, and that's when Jasper made his move. He launched himself to Anastasia, who barely had time to turn. She shrieked as Jasper tore at her, ripping every body part off that he could. Emmett, catching on, ran forward with a branch lit on fire. A horrible smell filled the air as Anastasia writhed and screamed and burned.
Ash and Antony were still battling while Anastasia was reduced to a pile of ashes. Antony grabbed Ash by the neck and threw her into Alice and Esme. Antony was suddenly perched over Charlie fangs out.
"Wait!" Alice called. "She's gone Antony, she's gone!"
"He's confused," Edward muttered. "He has no purpose without her."
"You don't have to do this!" Alice pleaded. Antony hesitated and to everyone's shock, Rosalie made her move. She threw herself with astonishing speed and knocked Antony away from Charlie. She threw the vampire into the already burning fire and turned to her family with a fierce look on her face.
"He was going to hurt us," she hissed over Antony's horrible screaming. "I did what I had to in order to save my family.
"She's right," Edward confirmed. "He wasn't able to be gentle. Anastasia destroyed his mind."
Alice ran forward and untied Charlie as Bella was still in her uncomfortable newborn status. "It's okay Charlie, it's me, it's Alice." She pulled him inside with Jasper, Carlisle and Esme to explain everything.
The rest of the Cullens cleaned the mess and headed back to Forks. Once Alice managed to calm down Charlie and let him speak briefly to Bella, Jasper and Alice boarded plane with him to go back to Washington.
Ash and Phoenix met back in Forks at the Cullen's house. Carlisle and Esme had contracted a team to rebuild the damage the fire had caused, so their house was in perfect condition by the time they were home.
"Thank you," Alice said, hugging each of them. Jasper shook their hands. The rest of the Cullens said their goodbyes. "You don't need to leave, you know," Alice said. "You can stay…"
"It's not our place," Phoenix said solemnly.
"We will keep in contact though," Ash promised.
"And visit," Alice prompted.
"And visit," Ash confirmed with a smile.
"We were lucky," Alice said when Ash and Phoenix were gone. "It could have been a lot worse. We were lucky she underestimated us."
"Who do you supposed those creepy allies of her are?" Emmett asked.
"I don't want to know," Alice said firmly. "The people I love are save, let's leave it at that."
A/N And we've hit the end guys! Thanks for reading.