Bella's POV

We slowly drifted through the woods, heading toward the Cullen mansion.

It was going to be so hard to let go of them. My heart thumped painfully in my chest. Aro gave my hand a reassuring squeeze. I looked at him and smiled. My life was changing, and it was changing for the better. Still, I couldn't help thinking how hard it would be leaving.

But, I had to leave. If I didn't leave now, I would keep thinking about how Edward had left me and who he had left me for, and I didn't want that.

"You know, Alice stopped watching your decisions just recently," I whispered. I hoped I wasn't making a mistake telling him this.

"What do you mean, amore mio?" Aro said. He looked at me with a confused look.

"Yeah. After-" I swallowed hard. Uh-oh. How was I going to do this? Well, the best way is to always be honest. "After Edward left, Alice stopped looking for you and the rest of the Volturi," I said.

"Why did he leave?" he asked me. Oh no. I was hoping he wouldn't ask me that.

"Um. After we returned home, he was really distant towards me. From what I heard, he fell in love with Tanya from the Denali Coven. I found out yesterday that he left and isn't coming back. I was really upset and burned everything that reminded me of him," I rushed out. We stopped walking. Aro turned towards me and pulled me into his arms, hugging me gently.

"I'm so sorry, Isabella," he whispered into my ear. I hugged him tighter. I didn't want to cry in front of him. I took a deep breath. Mmmmm. He smelled so good. I blushed and smiled.

"It's alright. It wasn't your fault. He's the one that chose to leave, not you. I should've never forgiven him in the first place. Especially after that first time I saw you. It's a good thing neither of you can read my mind," I said, looking up at him.

He smirked. "And why is that, my dear?"

I bit my lip and smiled. "Because none of the things I was thinking were at all appropriate," I said, giggling once.

He looked at me and smirked again. "Is that so, amore mio?" he asked, tucking a piece of my hair behind my ear. I drew in a shaky breath.

I just smiled and shook my head. "We should get going. I don't want to draw this out any longer than I have to," I said.

He took my hand and we began walking again. Why did this have to hurt so much? Why did it have to be like this? Why did Edward say that he would love me forever, then go and leave me for that blonde, skanky whore? Why, God, why hadn't I met Aro before I met Edward? I could have been happy this time. I wouldn't have had to suffer the pain that I did. I realized, now, that nothing was ever going to be the same again. But, that was okay. Better than okay. It was going to be more than words could describe. William Shakespeare would be at a loss for words, it would be so good.

Suddenly, the mansion came into view. I had unconsciously gripped Aro's hand tighter. I was scared. Dead scared. Carlisle. Esme. Alice. Jasper. Emmett. Rosalie. Jacob. Charlie. Renee. I'd be leaving them all behind, never looking back on what used to be my life. I took a deep breath.

"It's all right, my dear. I'll be right here, with you," Aro whispered to me. I looked up at him and smiled.

"Okay. Let's do this, before I lose my nerve," I said, turning back to the house. "This is going to be hard enough as it is," I whispered to myself.

We walked up to the house and up the front steps. I hesitated at the door. Oh, God. I can't do this. The hole in my chest will come back if I do.

"No, it won't," a voice in my head whispered to me. "Aro will protect you from that big, ugly, nasty hole. He loves you and he's not going to abandon you."

I looked up at him again. He looked down at me and placed a gently kiss on my lips. "I'm right here," he whispered.

I turned back to the door and knocked. My heart was beating erratically in my chest. It hammered against my rib cage. The door flew open in front of us.

Alice stood there, looking at me like she had just had her heart ripped out of her chest, and like she wanted to cry.

"Why?" she asked in a tiny voice, her voice cracking. "Why are you taking her away from us?" She was talking to Aro, but looking at me.

"Alice," I said, my own voice small. I flung my arms around her, the tears streaming down my face. "I love you, you know that, right, Alice?"

"I know, Bella. I know. I'm really going to miss you," she said. I just hugged her tighter. I didn't want to leave Alice. She was my best friend and my sister. I couldn't believe I was doing this to her again.

I let her go and we all went inside. The rest of the family was standing in the living room, all with sad expressions on their faces. Even Rosalie. I didn't get it. Rosalie hated me and yet she looked as if someone killed her puppy. She had her head down.

"Rosalie?" I said. She didn't answer. "Rosalie?" I said a little louder. She still didn't answer me. I inched forward until I was almost right in front of her. "Rosie cheeks?" I whispered with a small smile on my face. That got a response. She looked up at me, a tiny smile gracing her face. I stepped up to her and hugged her gently.

"Please don't be sad, Rose. I know we weren't the best of friends but, I still love you like the sister I never had. The most beautiful sister I never had," I whispered to her. She gently hugged me back.

"I am going to miss you, Bella. I'm sorry I was mean to you," she whispered back. We let go of each other and gave the other a smile. I could hear Esme quietly dry sobbing. I knew this was going to hurt all of us.

I took a deep breath and stepped into the middle of the room. Alice, Jasper, Emmett, and Rosalie were now standing behind Carlisle and Esme. Jasper was holding his head in his hands, the pain our-his family was feeling too much for him. I felt so guilty.

"Sorry, Jazz," I said. This was all my fault. I looked at him. "He really does love me, you know."

He lifted his head to look at me. "I know, Bella. I can feel it flowing off of him in tidal waves," he said, giving me a small smile. I looked over to Aro. He was looking at me with love in his eyes. I smiled at him and turned back to Jasper. I walked over to him and hugged him tightly.

"Take care of my pixie for me, Jazz. I know she can take care of herself but, just make sure she's happy. You're my brother and I love you, cowboy," I whispered in his ear. The hot tears running down my face stained his shirt. He rubbed soothing circles on my back.

"I promise, darlin'. I love you too, Bells. Take care of yourself," he whispered back to me. I let go of him.

I gulped in a lungful of air. Emmett was next. He lifted me up off the ground in one of his tight bear hugs. "Bells," he said, his voice breaking. "Be good, okay? I'm gonna miss having you around here, kid."

I laughed. "I'll try, Em bear. I'm really going to miss you, Emmett," I told him. He put me down.

Esme and Carlisle. My biggest fear. My other parents. I hugged them both. "You're the ones that it hurts the most to let go of," I sobbed hard. "Mom. Dad. I love you."

They held me. Esme kissed my forehead. Carlisle rubbed my back. I felt like this part of me was dying. It killed me, knowing that I wouldn't be seeing them for a long time after this. "We love you too, Bella. You will always be a part of this family," Carlisle said.

"Maybe you all can come to Volterra sometime and visit us," I said, my voice thick from crying. I stepped back, gave them both a kiss on the cheek, and walked back over to Aro, taking his outstretched hand. I looked over at them one last time. "Good bye, guys."

"'Bye Bella," they all said in unison.

With that, Aro and I walked out the house, into the woods, heading back to Charlie's house, leaving them behind. Them. My other family.