This story is Non-canon/ AU: Alternate Universe / OOC: Out of Character
Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author-mama4dukes. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.
Five years later…
Taha Aki's POV
They were married a year later in La Push, Washington. Originally, they were going to have a quickie wedding in Las Vegas, but Didi and I, along with Charlie, Sue, Joshua, and Ava shut down that idea in a jiffy. We wanted her married at home, where she grew up, amongst friends and family.
During the year they dated, Peter met her entire crazy family. He first met Caius and Paul when they threatened to disembowel him if he ever hurt her. Peter actually got along well with them now, especially with Paul. He was crazy into cars like he was, so within two years, they both quit their lucrative jobs as engineers and embarked on a new career together when they opened up a high-end automobile restoration business. They were now making more money than they ever did as engineers.
After a year, Rosalie joined their team and so did Jacob Black. Of course, Joshua and Ava, who were down on Earth from the spirit world for a second go at raising Peter, refused to be separated from their son so they sold their house and moved to the area. Joshua now worked for their restoration company. Like his son, he too was a mechanical genius.
Their business was located in Forks, Washington where they could be with family. Our daughter Bella was still the powerful VP of Aro Companies. She still worked hard and did a great deal of traveling. The only difference was that she worked from home when she could and had meetings via video conference. She and Peter also had a helicopter launch pad on the roof of their home so that she could get to her office in Seattle at a moment's notice. Her private jet was also on the ready at Forks Airport.
Bella was still a down-to-earth girl, though. She helped out at her Uncle Quil's business when she could, and even filled in for the receptionist at her Aunt Molly's beauty salon.
Aside from Benjamin and Seth, all of Bella's siblings moved back to the area. They were all very close and were raising their kids together in the lovely, close-knit communities of Forks and La Push. Heidi and her husband Garrett also moved to Forks. She really hated living away from her best friend.
Kids—oh my—now that was an issue we were finally broaching with my daughter and son-in-law. They both avoided having babies for as long as they could because, in reality, they were having too much fun just being together. At some point, they decided that they couldn't put off having children any longer because of their age.
As a result, Bella was now pregnant and due any day. I couldn't wait for them to enter this new phase of their lives. Of course, pregnancy didn't stop my daughter at all. It appeared she planned on working up until the time she delivered the baby.
Currently, she was in Port Angeles doing a final walkthrough of the newly built AroMart Super Mall. They had razed the original store and re-built it from the ground up to be their new flagship mall. Other than the AroMart store, the mall offered several full service conveniences such as AroHealth, AroDental, AroBank, AroSalon, AroNails, AroOptical, AroTravel, AroAutoCare, AroInsurance, AroTravel, AroCafe, and a coveniently located Arotel. Many of the rural communities in the area were anticipating it because having those services would eliminate the necessity for people to travel several hours to Olympia or Sequim.
"Aki!" my wife called, running into the room.
"What is it?"
"It's Bella. Her water broke."
"What? Where is she?"
"She's still in Port Angeles. Where do you think she is? She said that she just has to finish checking on one more thing and she'll be home."
"Port Angeles is an hour away! Why is she so god-damned stubborn?"
"I'm calling Charlie. At least he's in Port Angeles working."
"I'm going to text Aro to make her stay put. Where's Petey?"
"He's on his way to her. Paul is with him," Rose said, walking into the house. "I don't understand why Bellsy is so stubborn. Anyway, we're all headed in her direction. We just thought you should know."
"Is it true? Did your water break?" I asked my niece after reading the frantic text message from my brother-in-law.
"Who told you?" She narrowed her eyes at me suspiciously.
"Your Taki Dad just text messaged me. Apparently, you're to stay put."
"Well, duh. I highly doubt I'm going anywhere considering the massive contraction that just hit me." My niece latched onto my arm and grimaced. "Oh, this hurts!"
"Good Lord! Bella, I'm only the CEO of a large, multi-billion conglomerate. I don't know anything about labor and delivery!"
"Perhaps she should sit down first," one of the management suggested, a female whose name escaped me.
Someone went running to another part of the store and grabbed a chair. The idiot, in his attempt to impress us, explained, "This is our top of the line, reclining, beach lounger. We want to make sure that our customers have…"
"I really don't give a damn what the quality of the chair is! Just lay it out for me!"
"Yes, ma'am!" As Bella finally reclined on the beach lounger, others on the management team showed up with blankets and pillows in an attempt to make her comfortable. I held her hand while others on the management team who had been through the birthing process before breathed alongside her.
Almost an hour later, my nephew Paul rushed inside along with Bella's husband Peter.
"Bells, are you okay?"
"Of course I'm not okay! I am about to have a baby! Where the hell is the damned ambulance?" she cried.
The management team and I all glanced at each other.
"Did none of you think of calling an ambulance?" Peter asked. "My wife is in labor."
"Oh my God! I feel something between my legs!" Bella cried.
"Shit! Where's Rosie when we need her?"
"Someone grab some towels for me!" Paul demanded. "This baby is coming. I can see its head."
One of the females on the management team instructed her to hold her thighs back as she pushed.
"Paul, you'd better catch that baby no matter what!" Peter cried. He was as white as a sheet and sitting on Bella's other side, holding her hand.
"Don't worry, kiddo. Big bro isn't going to let anything happen to you."
"What in motherfucking hell?" Bella's brother Caius bolted onto the scene.
"Why are you here so quickly?"
"I happened to be in Port Angeles having lunch with Dad." I looked up and noticed Charlie calmly approaching his daughter's side.
"Hey, baby girl."
"Daddy, this hurts!"
"I know, honey. I know, but there's no stopping the baby from coming now." He turned to me and greeted, "Aro. How are you?"
"Oh, magnifico. I'm just here supporting my niece." I turned to her. "Can I get you something? A glass of Scotch, perhaps? Or maybe I can play the soundtrack to Mamma Mia? That's always been calming to you."
"Bella, push," Caius urged. He was standing right behind Paul, who was kneeling on the floor ready to catch the baby. Thank goodness, he played Little League when he was younger. He at least had some practice with catching.
"Really push hard, Bellsy," Paul counseled. "Like you have to propel a watermelon out of your vagina! Think of it as a torpedo—you have to shoot that baby out of your body!"
"Dude, how the hell is that helping our sister?" Caius asked.
"I'm just winging this, man. I've only been in the delivery room twice. I just know that Jane really had to bear down really hard when she gave birth."
"Oh, that's it. That's what the doctor told Athena when she was giving birth. Bear down!" Caius instructed. "Bear down and…Paul—there's the head."
"I know. I've got it. Bellsy, keep pushing. I've got the baby. Keep bearing down."
My nephew carefully guided out the shoulders, and then the rest of the baby slid right out. He cradled the baby carefully while Caius passed a towel to him. There was a large, round of applause and even bigger sighs of relief."
"Hey, kiddo. I'm your Uncle Paul."
"Look at you…you cutie." Caius and Paul were making cooing noises and silly faces at the baby. In fact, so was the entire management team.
"Let me hold him, pal," Caius said. Paul reluctantly passed the baby to him. "Hey, we should probably do something with that umbilical cord. Don't we have to deliver the placenta?"
"Do we just yank it out?"
"Hell if I know! I never paid attention to that part. Oh, crap! There's something coming out of her! It's the afterbirth. Someone give me a towel!"
Paul caught the bloody blob, which was the placenta.
"Now, what do we do? Cut the cord?" Paul asked.
"No, I think we have to leave it intact for the doctors to inspect."
"Alrighty! How come the ambulance is taking so long?"
Bella shook her head, whipped her cell phone out of her pocket, and dialed 911.
"Hello, my name is Isabella Swan. I'm at the new Port Angeles AroMart Super Mall. I just had a baby. Would you please send an ambulance over?" She looked up at everyone. "There. I got the job done."
"That's why you're the vice president, Ms. Swan," one of the managers stated.
"You're damn straight." She turned to her brothers. "May I see my baby now?"
"Of course." Caius gingerly placed the baby in his sister's arms. "He's going to be a little slugger. I can tell already."
"We have a boy?" Peter asked.
"You sure do. What are you going to name him?"
"Charles Joshua Taha Aki Swan-Cunningham after his grandfathers," he replied.
"I'm honored," Charlie said. He took the baby from his daughter and smiled. "Well, look at that. You've got my eyes."
A minute later, the rest of the family came rushing inside, followed by the ambulance. Everyone migrated to the hospital and I had tears in my eyes. My favorite niece was now a mother and I was a great uncle. Seeing Bella give birth to her baby was a gift I'll never forget.
Taha Aki's POV
Charles Joshua Taha Aki Swan-Cunningham grew up to be a very intelligent, young man who was a whiz with anything and everything mechanical. He went to college to become an engineer, but ended up switching majors to political science after taking an elective class on constitutional law. He attended law school and, like his grandfather Charlie, became a respected judge. Eventually, he was appointed to become a justice of the United States Supreme Court; however, he still tinkered with cars on the weekends.
Three years after Little Charlie was born, Bella gave birth to another little boy named Aro Jet Swan-Cunningham. Why did she give him such an odd middle name? She gave birth to him on her private jet on the way home from a meeting in New York. Uncle Aro was again by her side during her delivery, but this time, he insisted on traveling with a physician and labor and delivery nurse since she was at such a late stage of her pregnancy.
We also discovered later that it wasn't really a meeting that they went to in New York. They had gone on a weekend binge of Broadway musicals. In fact, according to the flight crew, everyone was singing along to the soundtrack of Mamma Mia as she delivered Aro Jet, who would grow up to be a Tony award-winning actor in Broadway musicals and an Oscar award-winning actor in Hollywood movies. Eventually, he would tire of being an actor so he would take a stab at politics. He would begin by becoming mayor of Forks, followed by a short stint as a Washington State senator, and finally become the President of the United States.
A year after Aro Jet was born, Bella delivered yet another son. This one was born at Forks Hospital because we practically held her hostage at home. Caius Paul, named for his uncles and known by his nickname CP, was a hellraiser growing up. Oh, we all thought he was the second coming of the devil—a more mischievous boy was not to be found on the Olympic Peninsula. CP was sharp, quick-witted, clever, and had inherited his parents' fabulous looks. Of course, the boy couldn't get into too much trouble with all of his grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins watching him like hawks. CP ended up attending Yale and then Oxford. He eventually became the CEO of Aro Companies after his mother gave up the helm, but that would be much later in life.
All three of my grandbabies from Bella became very successful. Personally, I believe, it's because they grew up in a family rich with love. Bella and Peter nurtured their creative sides and allowed them to explore their interests. They also instilled in them the value of hard work. They weren't allowed to run amok in Forks or on the reservation, and if they did, they were quickly found out by their many relatives, including us, and reprimanded for their actions. To me, though, it's still incredible to see how much they've achieved.
When I see the lives of those supernaturals who were given a second chance at life, I'm positive that my brothers and I made the correct choice in returning their humanity to them. None of them had asked to be supernaturals. At one point, they had all been human beings with dreams and goals, which had all been ripped away from them by evil forces conspiring against them.
Giving them a second chance at humanity was the correct decision. With the destruction of the evil forces, these former supernaturals were able to live their lives to their fullest potential as human beings—each one of them planting their roots, and cultivating their lives so they were rich with significance. They became extraordinary citizens and contributing members of the society they lived in. They truly made the world a better place to live in.
As I lay here ready to take my last mortal breath before returning to the spirit world, I finally understand the fragility of human life. The amount of time a human being has on earth is measured by his or her mortality. A human's mortality, of course, is an unknown entity, but compared to eternity, it is very short. This was my actual first time as a real human being. In the past, I was a wolf who was blessed with an eternal life span, until I got tired of it, and decided to traverse to the spirit world. This time, I was sent back as an actual human with no supernatural abilities—it was part of my penance for creating a spirit child simply to make her suffer.
Humans have a limited amount of time to accomplish his or her goals. During their lifetime, they have to start with a blank slate and learn to eat, walk, talk, read, write, and then develop critical thinking skills—and that's just the beginning. They have challenge after challenge to meet, they have to become educated, find fulfilling careers, find their life partner, have children and pass on their knowledge to them in order to make the world a better place. They do all of this without any supernatural powers or a superhuman immune system, but with determination, discipline, and hard work. Simply being a living, breathing, human is an incredible feat.
I am humbled by the sight in front of me. My wife Didi is by my side, attempting to remain strong. We will be separated for a while after I leave earth, but the knowledge that we'll be together again gives me peace. Bella and Paul are also by my side. I had the honor of raising them both while they re-lived their childhood again. Actively parenting my children, for the first time in my existence, was the biggest challenge I ever faced, but the rewards I reaped from it were immeasurable.
I closed my eyes, and a voice entered my head, "It's okay for you to leave us. I can take it from here."
"What the hell?" were the final words I spoke as I left the mortal world.
"What the hell?" I cried as I opened my eyes at my familiar home in the spirit world. "Bella?"
"Yep, what's up?"
"I just saw you in the hospital? Why are you here in the spirit world?"
"I'm half-spirit child. I can come and go whenever I want."
"But…but… You aren't supposed to know! How did you find out?"
"I had her told, of course," Kaskae stated. "She is half-spirit child. She is of this world, not of the earth—she is more powerful than we ever will be."
"But we planned this! She was to live her life out as a human so she didn't know suffering!"
"And I am living my life out as a human. You were a fantastic stepfather—truly, but the goal was to get you to realize that lives, human or otherwise, are not to be trifled with, and you did that," Bella explained.
"When did you find out?"
"Aunt Molly told me when I graduated from college. That's why I left home to think. Actually, Uncle Kaskae brought me up here, and gave me back my memories. It was a true nightmare, but I'm glad we were able to bring humanity back to the world." She smiled. "I also want to thank you for giving me the opportunity to be a human child without the suffering because I truly adore my life now." Bella gave me one of her bear hugs. "Basically, Taki Daddy, I just want you to know that you did the correct thing in giving the former supernaturals back their humanity."
"Yes, you did. You probably should not have created me, but otherwise, you did the right thing. Because of you, everyone reached their full potential, but more importantly, they grew up with unconditional love. I can't imagine a world without the brilliance of Aro's global entrepreneurship or Rose's engineering genius. I also think the world is a better place because we have Caius as a social worker, helping to right injustices, and my father as a judge bringing people to justice. I also can't imagine being without my brothers and sisters. Or mom, with her quiet strength—she brings peace to everyone."
"I miss your mother already."
"I'm sure she misses you." With tears in her eyes, Bella looked into my eyes. "I love you, Taki Dad. I promise I'll look after everyone down on earth. Just make sure you keep looking out for us."
"I won't miss your mother's cooking."
"Yeah, it's too bad I'm still going to have to shovel it down my throat," she replied dryly, and shook her head. "I should go. Everyone is going to think I fell into the toilet."
"Be good, Bella."
"I will. One more thing."
"What is it?"
"Thank you for giving me the opportunity to find Peter again. I just couldn't imagine a world without him in it."
"He'll always be with you. He's your soulmate."
With one last kiss on the cheek, Bella left me home in the spirit world to watch over humanity.
I looked down on earth to see everyone grieving over my remains. Paul was comforting his mother while Bella looked out a window, and up towards me with a smile. I swear the heavens lit up with that one smile.
"You really shouldn't swear up in heaven, Brewmaster," she whispered with a wink before turning back towards my family on earth. I knew they were in excellent hands with Bella looking after them.