Well, old friend, it seems like I've got bit of a story to tell you. When I first started this diary I thought I'd give up in the first couple of days because I didn't have anything to write about. How ironic, eh? I've been on the ride of my life this past year and although I do feel pretty insane to be talking to a piece of paper, I don't think I'd have made it out of all this (with my mental stability!) without you. If my grandchildren ever do read this I apolgoise for how crazy I've been but the truth is, this is fucking crazy. Werewolves, vampires, soulmates, friendship, arguments... While my life pre-Jared had been a lot quieter and easier, there's not even a question about whether or not I'm glad he imprinted. My life has been turned upside down way too many times and yet this is the happiest I've ever been. Even though I'm currently sitting in the hospital with two broken ribs.
Want me to explain?
I'll start from the beginning, this is a long story to tell.
I took Lucy shopping the next day. I text Jared and he said that it was safe as they'd checked everywhere around La Push. There was no sign of anything. I thought it would be a good idea for both Lucy and I, if we got out of La Push. We had a pretty great day. I'd managed to persuade her that she was worth ten of Austin and she told me she was going to break up with him. I knew this wouldn't last but it was nice nonetheless. But all in all, it was a pretty stressful day. I was tired. Ever since Emily first told me about the fight I haven't seemed to be able to get any sleep and now that Jared and I are... in the middle of whatever this is, I can't ever seem relaxed enough to sleep. And now I have to deal with Lucy's boyfriend being buddies with a vampire. At least she was breaking up with him so that would get her away.
However, it all just took it's toll and I fell asleep.
I jolted awake when the car stopped. I yawned and rubbed my eyse but then looked around to the unfamiliar settings. There were cars everywhere. There was obviously a party going on from the loud music blaring from the house in front.
"What. The. Fuck?" Lucy said, her mouth open.
"Err, where are we?" I asked, my head whipping around in fright. This wasn't La Push.
"Austin's house. He said he wasn't doing anything tonight!"
Panic rose in side me.
"What are we doing at Austin's house?!"
"Well, you persuaded me to dump him and so I just wanted to get it over and done with. And I thought it would be easier if I knew you were outside... moral support, you know?" she said, although she didn't take her eyes off the house.
We need to leave, my mind was screaming.
"Well, he's obviously busy. And you're angry. This isn't the best time to finish a relationship – we should go and you come back later," I said. Later, once my boyfriend has ripped apart the vampire that could potentially be inside that house.
My hands were shaking and I fumbled for my phone. Yes, I was panicking a bit too much, he might not be in there.
"No, I'm doing it now," she said angrily. "I can't believe he'd have a FUCKING PARTY AND NOT INVITE HIS GIRLFRIEND. YOU LITTLE MOTHER-FUCKER " she screamed, jumping out of the car. "IF HE'S WITH ANOTHER GIRL RIGHT NOW, I SWEAR TO GOD!"
I ran out after her and grabbed her arm. "Lucy, get back in the car! We should just leave!"
She shoved me off her and stormed into the house. I tried to grab her again and I shouted after her but she was a lot stronger than me and wasn't having any of it.
I debated asking her for the keys and getting the hell out of there but there is the minor detail that I cannot drive.
Yes, there we go. I can get full marks in whatever Math, English or History exam but put me in front of a wheel and I panic too much and almost crash the car. It's so embarrassing. And also just so typical that that's the one thing I need, I can't do. I dialled Jared's number but he didn't answer.
"No, no, Jared. Come on, pick up."
I called Jared again and again but to no avail.
My mind tried to recall every single scary movie I've ever watched. The first person to die is always the one left alone; usually the one outside. So I got inside that house as fast as I could. A vampire isn't going to rip my throat out here in front of everyone, is it?
Shit, what if the vampire is planning on killing everyone?
I called Jared again, but only got the answer machine.
Shit. Shit. Shit.
There was a chance that he wasn't even there, he could have left for country, I tried to assure myself, but it didn't help. I called out for Lucy but I couldn't find her.
A girl bumped into me and I let out a startled shreik, gave her a scared look and walked away quickly. She looked confused as fuck. She wasn't a vampire, she didn't have red eyes. I was trying desperately to remember the things Jared had told me about them.
Red eyes. Cold, white skin. It sparkles under sunlight (which was no help, considering it was already getting dark). Super strong. Incredibly good looking. Smells like shit – although that's just to the wolves, apparently to me they'll smell delightful.
I decided that maybe I should just find the ugliest group of people and hide behind them. If a vampire is roaming about the house, then they'll pick their prey by picking off the people by themselves.
I sent Jared a hurried text, 'Lucy's taken me to Austin's. Please come get me. Be quick'. My fingers were fumbling and he still wasn't answering. I forwarded it to Paul and all the other pack members that I have the number of, but they barely ever carrying their mobiles with them because it's inconvenient if they have to phase. I called Jared's house phone but there was no answer. I left a panicked voicemail telling Jared to call me quickly. I called Emily and her house and left a message.
How can everyone be busy right now?!
I realised that if nothing were to happen they'd think I was the weirdest, most panicky person ever.
I tried to calm myself. I mean really, what were the chances of him being here, and what were the chances of him wanting to drink my blood?
Just as I'd told myself that nothing was going to happen, and half believed it, a voice came from dangerously close to my ear.
"Can I get you a drink?"
I snapped round.
He was good looking. I gulped. But he was wearing sun glasses so I couldn't tell.
"Um, no thank you."
Then I realised that it was ridiculous for someone to be wearing sun glasses inside.
I stepped backwards. I glanced around the room but it occurred to me if I act like I know what he is then he's more likely to kill me.
"Aww, come on," he said in a low, husky voice. I shook my head.
"I don't drink." His lips curved into a smile. An unbelieving one. "Underage."
His lips pulled back over sparkling white teeth. A smile. All I could see was a weapon, ready to tear through my skin and bleed me dry.
"That's what my boyfriend says."
His eyebrows rise in amusement. "What's your name?"
Shit. Shit. Shit.
This was becoming a conversation.
"I'm not here for the party, my friend just came in to speak to Austin."
"Oh... my cousin," he said.
My heart thumped loudly against my chest, my suspicions confirmed. I was talking to a vampire. A real vampire who could kill me in a second.
A VAMPIRE. THE ONE THING I DO NOT WANT. A REAL LIFE FUCKING VAMPIRE JESUS FUCKING CHRIST.
A part of me still hoped that it was just a fucking coincidence.
I looked down and realised that my hands were shaking. I hit call to Jared one more time, but I just brought attention to how clumsy my fingers were and how obviously terrified I was.
"He's a bit drunk though," the vampire said. "Won't be much of a serious conversation, I'm afraid."
"Huh?" I hit redial again and again. Then I looked up. I swallowed the lump in my throat. My mouth was so dry it hurt. "Oh. Yeah. Lucy and Austin."
"Lucy?" he said, his eyebrows rising up from behind the sun glasses. "So you're friends with his girlfriend?"
Fuck. I shouldn't even be having a conversation with this thing.
"If he's drunk then I should go get her. We should leave."
"Come now, the parties only started," he said. I walked away but his hand gripped around my wrist.
It was cold. Freezing.
His grip was like steel.
Should I scream? Should I shout? Police won't help. He'd kill them all. No matter how many there are of us, he's always going to be indestructible to us. Plus he's so fast that he could have me out of there in a second, or my neck snapped before people even realised what had happened.
My best plan is to just to procrastinate. Someone at home must get to a phone soon.
He must have seen the undiluted terror in my eyes as he smiled, although he dropped my arm.
"I'm sorry, but I really don't like parties," I told him, trying to force a smile.
He nodded. "I'll get you a drink, to ease your nerves," he said, his voice more of a purr.
I waited till he crossed the room and I pushed past a group of people. "Excuse me, sorry," I grumbled. My breathing was heavy and I felt light headed. I was going to pass out if I didn't start thinking clearly.
I had a panic attack in my freshman year finals. That's pretty pathetic isn't it? if I can't even deal with a stupid test I'm hardly going to make it out of a vampire attack. It seems like such a petty thing to worry about. Now that I'm in this bizarre situation where I'm in a room full of people but yet I've never felt more alone or scared in my entire life.
Jared, where are you?
It seems so fucking stupid that I'd even been arguing with Jared. What does it matter if he lied? What does it matter if we argue? What does any of it fucking matter? We'd be able to work it out, because that's what we do. That's what we'll always do. We stay together and we work it out and nothing goes wrong. But this, this is something of a whole different kilter. There's no way I can survive this without Jared.
I need him.
This is the mother fucking twenty first century and I can't even get a connection to people one hours drive away?
I was so stupid. Stupid doesn't even cover it. Why would you go out if you know there's a potential you can get killed?
I pushed one foot in front of the other. "LUCY?" I shouted her name and searched manically for a glimpse of her. My god I'd do anything to see her. Just to have someone with me.
He reappeared. He grinned again.
That fucking grin. What does it mean? Why does he have to look so fucking intrigued?
NOONE IS INTRIGUED WITH ME. THIS IS THE POINT. EVEN MY OWN SOUL MATE DOESN'T NOTICE ME UNTIL HE IMPRINTS, FOR CHRIST'S SAKE! IT'S SO TYPICAL THAT THE ONE TIME SOMEONE NOTICES ME IT'S A VAMPIRE!
"I was just seeing if Lucy was around," I told him in an obviously panicky voice. "I really have to go."
He smiled. "You really are quite nervy, aren't you?"
I looked at the floor. "My boyfriends very protective. He hates me talking to other guys." I say. It's kinda true. "He'll be here in a couple minutes."
"Well then, you'll have to wait till he gets here."
Kim Conweller, you're the thickest piece of shit ever.
Of course he doesn't know that my boyfriends a fucking werewolf who'd rip him to pieces and I'm not really in the position to go around threatening killing machines when said boyfriend doesn't even know something is wrong.
"Would you like to find somewhere with less people? To wait for you boyfriend," he asked, stepping closer.
"No, no, I better stay here so I can see him arrive," I say, stepping through to the busier room. He followed, a haunting chuckle filling my ears.
"All I want is to talk... don't worry. Now, will you tell me your name?"
My hands wouldn't stop trembling. At least the beer was cold and so my calmed my sweaty palms.
I took a seat on the couch in the middle of the room because I felt my knees were going to give way. At least this was in the middle.
He sat next to me. "Name?"
I closed my eyes and took a deep breath. I could give him a fake name but that won't stop him from killing me.
He smiled at me.
Maybe the reason he's 'intrigued' with me is because he can hear my heartbeat. I was panicking so badly that it must be pretty obvious to him. He either thinks I'm just really attracted to him or he knows that I know something's up. I kept my eyes down.
"So you live in that reservation... La Push, right? Lucy was telling me all about."
Please. No. No. No.
"What's it like there?" he asked.
I couldn't do it. I couldn't speak normally and I couldn't pretend like I didn't know he wanted to kill me. I wiped my forehead and it was cover with a slick sweat.
I can't do this. I can't talk to normal people properly let alone vampires.
"I need the toilet," I said quietly and rushed out of the room. I found the nearest toilet and locked myself in there. I called Jared and left another answer phone message on his cell and house phone.
Why is this happening to me?
I should have stayed in the car. Oh god. I called Lucy's cell too but she didn't answer.
I sat on floor and put my head in my hands.
"What do I do, Jared?" I whispered to myself.
I splashed my face with water and paced for a moment, trying to calm myself.
There was banging on the door and I had to cover my mouth to stop the screams.
"Hey, hurry up in there!" a woman shouted.
"Just a minute!" I called.
There's no point panicking because that's what got me into here in the first place. I need to be rational, I told myself. I'm clever. I think about things rationally.
After a few minutes the woman shouted again. She was just going to draw attention to me and I couldn't go back in there. Not with that thing. I needed to get out.
Yes. I climb out, then the vampire won't know I've gone. The music's so loud he won't hear, right?
I climb out, run as fast as I can and call a cab when I get to a safe distance, I decide. There's no chance that I could run all the way back to La Push and I don't know where I am.
Hopefully he'll get distracted by someone else. An easier target. He won't care that much. there's no reason to single me out. It was the only chance I got. The longer I stay here the more he'll talk and the more intrigued he'll get. The more likely he'll decide to chose me as a victim.
Why is it that bathroom windows are always the smallest of windows? It makes no sense for them to be any smaller than usual. I took it off the safety latch and fortunately they were bigger than my ones at home as I could actually fit through these. It was a squeeze but I managed it. I dropped down and tried to be as quite as possible. I was careful not to catch any skin because the last thing I want right now is to get a cut.
I looked around. I had no idea where to go. There was a couple making out to the left, just on the outside of some woods. I wasn't going to into the woods, I wasn't that stupid. I went to the right and started running as fast as I could down the road. I hadn't been running a minute when a hard cold body crashed into me. A natural scream ripped from my lungs and I didn't stop.
He was here. I didn't stop screaming. Maybe someone would come out of their house.
What good would that do? They couldn't help against a vampire, even if they had a gun.
Maybe Jared would hear, sense that I was in trouble. I mentally pleaded for him.
The next thing I knew, his hand on my mouth, holding it shut. I tried to bite obviously this didn't help. It hurt me more than him. I thrashed around and tried to hit him but nothing. He felt absolutely nothing. There was physically nothing I could do. As always, I was useless.
Why did I run? Stupid. Stupid. Stupid.
The surroundings blurred and I realised that he was running. We got into the woods and he threw me to the floor. He held a finger over his lips. He smiled, tilting his head to the side.
I looked around. There was nobody about. There was no chance that I could possibly get out of here.
"You know what I am, don't you?" he said, crouching next to me. I said nothing.
"I know you do. Come on. Tell me what I am."
I could feel tears coming to my eyes. I hated that there was nothing I could do.
His fingers brushed my neck. I swallowed.
"Okay then, I'll say it. Vampire."
I let out a breath. I was still desperately holding onto the hope that I was wrong.
"Now you tell me what you have in La Push," he commanded. My heart skipped a beat; I looked up to see he didn't have the sunglasses on any more.
"What do you mean?" I stammered.
"Kim, I can smell it all over you. Indulge me. What are they?"
I glared at him as he smiled, as if this were fun. As if it's a game.
He crinkled his nose. "Yeah, I thought it smelt like dog."
How odd things are when you're confronted with terror. I'd never imagined that I would become angry. He could kill me in a second but for some reason I just became so fucking infuriated.
"A pack of fifteen, bred to kill you in a second," I said. His red eyes snapped to me. I may have exaggerated on the numbers a bit there. I should have said more but I didn't want it to be unbelievable.
My brain rationalised that maybe if he knew this he'd get scared and let me go.
"Fifteen?" he said. I nodded, hopes rising. "Ohh, good job I'm quick then. And, unless you hadn't noticed, sweetie, no full moon."
He stepped closer.
"It doesn't work like that," I told him. His eyes narrowed. I liked this new position of power but it still didn't help the fact that they weren't here.
All of a sudden his fist came smashing into my stomach with a force I'd never experienced. It was like getting hit by a truck, but all the force was concentrated onto one area. I flew across the floor, chocking and coughing. I thought I was going to be sick.
"Tell me about your little boyfriend or I'm going to break all your other ribs too." He smiled sickly sweet.
My last hope now was still to just keep talking, to keep putting off what seems inevitable, in the hopes that someone back in La Push gets one of my messages.
"What do you want to know?"
He crouches down next to me. "Well, I wanna find out a little bit of information and I think that you might be just the chick to give me those answers."
I run my hand over my stomach. He grins and settles himself down, getting a bit closer and crossing his legs.
"Let me tell you how this story starts; set the scene. I'm you're average, albeit gorgeous, run of the mill kinda human. Just like you," he says, then apologises like I should be offended. "Then I get 'The Bite'. A whole bunch of us did at the same time. This Riley guy." He watches my face for realisation. "Breeding a army." He sees it. "There we go! I knew you'd know something!"
I shake my head and but I can't think. I don't know what to do, what to say. I'm paralysed in fear.
"But fortunately for me, I escape. I go off on my own for a little bit. Manage to find some fresh food a little east of here, you know?" he sends me a wink. "Turns out to be a good idea as the entire motherfucking lot of them gets slaughtered. And that's were you come in, chick." He strokes my face and I pull away. He really enjoys seeing my face tighten. "Aint nothing that could tear down that many newbies. Trust me, I know – I'm one of them!" He laughs and then lays back on his elbows. "So, sweetie, as it your little boyfriend and his wolfy-boys?"
"Ooh! Delightful. Maybe a little revenge is in order?"
I scramble to my feet, chucking dirt in his eyes in the hopes of distracting him and start to run. I know it's futile but I can't just sit there. He allows me to run for a bit, I think to play with me.
I manage to lose sight of him. I run and run but I never seem to get anywhere. I run so fast I lose breathing and the pain in my stomach doubles me over. Desperately I try to get back up again but he drops down from a tree and laughs again.
"Do you actually know anything about vampires? Super speed... hearing... strength...? I don't think you fully comprehend the gravity of this situation." He grins again. "You're not getting away."
"If they managed to kill a whole army of you, what makes you think that they won't tear you to pieces too?"
He laughs and every cell in my body vibrates with anger. And fear. Mostly fear.
He looks around dramatically, holding out his arms. "I'm still here, aint I? And none of them are so I, err," he bends down. "Kinda like my chances."
"If you hurt me they'll kill you," I whisper, standing up and taking slow steps backwards.
"Ohh, Kimmy! Are you threatening me? I'm hurt. I thought we had a connection." He pouts at me and I back up against a tree.
He closes in on me, pushing his body against me. It's cold and like steel. I turn my face to the side and shut my eyes tight.
"I really am going to enjoy sucking you dry." He grins against my neck. "Even if you smell like wet dog."
I pull away but he's got me pinned. No matter how hard I push I don't even make him stumble.
"I didn't even like those desperate fucking new breeds but I feel like as a fellow new vampire I need to respect those, and the one who made me by some kind of avenging scheme. I hadn't really thought of it till I smelt you but now I'm definitely sure. Definitely. Good news! You're pick of the day!"
All of a sudden his grin vanishes and his head spins around to another direction. I take it as my moment and get out from under his arm and run. I sprint as fast as I can but it's not enough. He crashes into me and we roll on the floor because of the velocity he was going at untill we come to a stop. He stands up, bring me up too with his arm around my neck.
That's when I hear it too. The crashing of paws against ground. Snarling and growling like I've never heard. Hope.
I wriggle about but his grip tightens. "Stop. Moving," he grunts in to my ear.
The growling gets evermore louder, louder than I thought possible. The ground is shaking with the force and that's when I see them. I've never been so thankful in my life. Just knowing he's there. My knees give out but it doesn't matter, he's still holding my up around my neck.
I scream Jared's name and he lets out a piercing howl.
"Not another step!" the vampire screams, his fingers tightening around my neck. "You take one step and I'll rip her throat out!"
They halt but the growling and snarling is so loud and ferocious that he must be scared. He must be. You can't not be, with ten humongous, growling werewolves baring their teeth at you.
My eyes meet Jared's. I know which one he is automatically. I mouth that I'm sorry.
His body is crouched low, his hunches up, his claws out, his teeth are snarled and sharp and dripping and ready to make a feast of this vampire vermin that's slowly choking me.
The rest of the pack has surrounded us and the vampire's head is turning from side to side.
The air is thick with tension and the wolves rock back and forth, judging the situation. A few of their heads turn from side to side and I remember that they're talking. Jared's eyes don't leave mine.
I struggle against the vampire again and his hand tightens. Jared pounces forward but stops when the vampire pulls me closer, stepping back.
"Buddy, you might wanna rethink coming any closer," the vampire's grin is evident in his voice. "Unless you want me to kill your girlfriend... I mean seriously that's cool with me, man."
I want to give him advice to shut up because Jared's kind of losing any human amount of control by the look in his eyes but I'm too scared to think let alone speak.
The wolf to the left of Jared steps backwards, slowly, until he finally stops and changes.
He holds his hands out.
"Let's just stay calm, okay?" he growls at the vampire.
I swallow, which is kind of hard against the vampires firm grip.
I need something to shock him into letting me go, because there's no way they can get him without him ripping my throat open. But there's just nothing I can do. I'm too weak.
"Listen," Paul starts, stepping forward. "Let her go and we'll let you live."
The vampire laughs. "Am I supposed to believe that? Wow, you mutts really are thick as shit."
A louder wave of growls escape the lips of the already seething beasts that circle us. Because that's what they are, what they look like: beasts. It should be terrifying but it's conversely the only thing that's keeping me sane right now. They're the way they are to do exactly this, hunt and kill vampires and staring into Jared's eyes now is what's stopping me giving in.
"We don't care what you do, who you kill as long as it's not on our land or one of our people. Got it? We protect the people of La Push. You let her go and we don't give a fuck what you do."
His grip tightens and I can barely breathe. I close my eyes.
Everyone has to have a weakness.
I'm Jared's apparently.
So the vampire, he must have one too.
Suddenly I'm thinking of the old stories Billy tells and of Bella.
Three's a charm, right?
I need to break his attention just long enough to give them a chance to take him down.
My eyes open and I meet Jared's. His desperation is shining in those big brown eyes I love so much.
This vampire knows he's not getting out of here alive. And he'd rather take me down with him. Avenging the others is his plan right? So if I don't do something soon he's going to suffocate me.
I put my nails on my arm and quickly look down and back up at Jared, hoping he'll understand. His head moves to shake but I mouth those three words that I haven't been able to find in so long and I grit my teeth and do it.
I love you.
I stop myself from adding one more... goodbye.
I dig my nails deep into my arm and rip.
The sharp intake of breath from the vampire is my sign. His arms slack and his head spins down to me, his concentration broken long enough that I can slip between his arms. He lunges for me but not fast enough. I throw myself to floor as Jared pounces over me. The thud of him crashing into the vampire is all I hear before there are warm arms around me and I'm being taken away.
I scream Jared's name and I don't stop.
It took me a while to notice that it was Paul but we were just going so fast. I didn't understand what was happening. "Paul! Stop!" I scream but he doesn't.
We run for a what feels like forever until he puts me down.
"What the hell is going on?" I scream at him. Why did he just take me away from Jared? All I want right now is to make sure he's okay and to hold him in my arms. "Paul, stop. Please. I have to see Jared. I have to know he's okay," I start to cry from the shock of what's just happened and the fear of what could be happening right now. If Jared gets hurt saving me...
"I'm sorry, Kim. But I made a promise." Even he's out of breath so he must have been going at his full speed.
"Want to explain that?" I sob.
"It's not really a new promise," he says with a shrug, "but it's what he wanted me to do, take you away. Don't worry, he'll be here soon."
I put my shaking hands on my face. I still felt like I was going to be sick.
"He's okay. He's fine, Kim. I heard, okay? He'll be here soon."
"Thank you," I whisper. "For saving me." Suddenly I feel his arms around me in a hug. I fully break down, crying against him. He holds me tightly and whispers things like "it's okay" and "you're safe now".
It takes a while for the tears to stop but I soon become acutely aware that he's stark naked.
"This is awkward," I say, pointing to his, err, downstairs and keeping my eyes up.
He lets out a loud, bellowing laugh and pulls me tighter.
"Kim, I am so fucking happy you're okay."
I force a smile but all I can think about is Jared and how all I need is to see him.
"Jesus Christ, you really scared us." He sat down on tree stump. I made a comment about splinters and he takes my hand when I sit next to him. "Don't do that again, okay?"
"How did you know?" I ask him, touched that he seems quite upset.
"We were patrolling La Push when Jared just got this sick feeling. Like, seriously bad voodoo shit. Panic attack bad. Then we go to yours and you're not there, Lucy's not at hers. We go to meet at Sam's and we hear the answer machine going and your message and... well yeah. We leave." He sakes his head.
"Man..." he shivers. "Just hearing your scared voice and not knowing if it was too late. Hearing Jared's thoughts was too much."
I close my eyes and try not to think. "What do you mean it's not a new promise?"
He shrugs. "When Jared imprinted on you we kinda made this pact, that if some shit was to go down then I'd take you – or if I ever imprint he'll do the same – and we just keep going."
"Wherever. We didn't specify, not when there's leeches out there that can read minds."
"But how will he know –"
"Kim, we found you here, didn't we? Trust me, he'll find you."
I close my eyes and brush away the stay tears. "Where is he now?"
"Just finishing. He won't be able to rest if he doesn't make sure that thing is ripped to shreds. That's why I have to take you."
I lean back against a tree, feeling weak. The cut on my arm isn't too bad so it's not blood loss but the pain in my stomach is a bit too much to ignore. Maybe it's the adrenaline that was pumping through my body but I felt like I was going to pass out.
"You might want to cover that or something," Paul says, pointing at my arm. "You don't want it to get infected."
In truth the cuts are only a few inches long and barely deep at all, just enough to draw blood. But I humour him a little and pat it dry with my top. I open my mouth to say something but then I feel it, that warmth spreading inside my body and a coolness taking over my mind, that had still been spinning. Jared's getting closer. The sick feeling seems to ebb away and suddenly I don't care about my ribs.
He slows to a walk when he sees me and eventually comes to a stop in front of me, our eyes connecting and all of a sudden there's nothing else in the world.
No Paul, no vampire, no arguing parents or applying to universities or going to school or lies or confusion.
It's just us.
He changed back to his normal self and dropped to his knees, his body raked with sobs.
It suddenly hits me, how much shit he's been through. I realised how much control I have over him and how much it affects him.
I dropped down with him and wrap my arms around him.
"I'm so sorry," he whispered. "I'm so sorry."
His arms wrapped tightly around me and I buried my face in his neck, missing that warm, secure feeling.
"I'm never letting anything get that close to you ever again." He pressed kisses to my forehead and for the first time breathed evenly. Finally I felt safe.
I used to think that having to rely on other people made you weak, but I was wrong. Relying on others is a strength, trusting people is a lot harder than it seems. I was so sure that I was just letting him walk all over me... but opening up to people isn't a weakness. Trusting isn't when you know they won't hurt you, it's knowing that they're just as human (well, kinda) and are going to make as many mistakes as you are... but yet you know they're worth it. It's knowing that they're trying to do what's best for you, even if you don't realise they are or maybe that they wrong but their intentions were in the right place.
And whilst yes I was hurt by what Jared had done, he's not the malicious type. He'd never meant it. I'm so used to being disappointed I forgot to stop and realise that for the first time standing in front of me was the one person who was always going to give a shit.
It just took me a while to realise that.
"No, Jared. I'm so sorry. I don't even –"
He shook his head and my hair out of my eyes, cupping my face in his hands.
"I thought I'd lost you. Kim, I thought I'd lost you. I thought –"
I tried to get him to calm down but he kept crying. "Kim, I couldn't – I couldn't live if anything happened to you. Do you understand –"
"Jared! It's okay. Please, it's over."
He buried his face in my hair.
"Don't scare me like that again."
"I'm sorry," I whispered.
"It's all my fault," he pulled away and stood up, pacing. "I almost got you killed because I was too fucking stupid."
"What? How was this your fault? It wasn't, Jared. Please calm down."
For a moment I thought he was going to phase because he was shaking so much but he just took his anger out on a tree. Needless to say it's not standing anymore. And that was with just one punch. I don't even need to ask if that vampire is still alive.
I grabbed his arms and wrapped them around me, hugging him tightly. "Jared I'm so sorry..." I hold him there till his body stops shaking. "I'm sorry for everything. The arguing, the ignoring... I was so fucking stupid. I should be appreciating every second I have with you not holding onto what's happened in the past."
His arms tightened around me.
"I always just figured we had the rest of our lives ahead of us to be in this relationship and I admit it's kind of daunting and scary and I never realised just how lucky I was to be with you. It felt like we had an eternity to be together and I was so worried about what 'we' were that I never... I didn't realise how precious our time was together... or at least I forgot that for a while. The truth is I don't know how much time we have together and I should be spending that time working on us, enjoying life rather than wallowing in self pity in my bedroom. I'm so lucky to have you and I'm so sorry for everything." The tears were falling thick and fast by now but I couldn't stop – I wouldn't. I've felt sorry for myself for too long and he needs to know. "You're the most wonderful human being I've ever met and I should be the one making you feel like that, but instead I was just making you feel like shit for making one mistake."
"Baby, stop crying. If you want to make me happy just please stop crying." He pressed delicate kisses against my face, against the tears. The delicate kisses I remember before all this shit happened. The delicate kisses I fell in love with. The ones that first gave me those butterfly feelings, and still to this day do.
"I look forward to spending every day of my life falling more and more in love with you," I blubbered. "If you'll forgive me."
"Kim!" he picked me up and wrapped my legs around him before sitting back down on the ground. "I don't know what you're apologising for. I was a fucking douche and you were right to treat me how you did. I always knew you were strong but I guess I didn't realise how much." His fingers gently touched the cuts on my arm. "I mean, if you put up with me and a pack of werewolves you have to be a bit of a feisty bitch but... you were the one who got yourself out of that situation. You're pretty badass." He looked up at me. "Just when I think I can't love you any more, you go do stupid shit like that that proves to me that you're even more perfect. I was wrong to say that you couldn't handle the vampire stuff – that you worry too much – because that was just a shitty excuse and I'm sorry. You're so much stronger than I give you credit for and I should have trusted you more. I've been stupid.
"And just please don't apologise for what happened before tonight because, come on, I knew that you were never gonna be a chick who lets a guy walk over her and I admit it, I'm a dick and sometimes I need to be told that I'm being a dick."
I wiped the tears off my face. "I do get it," I whispered. "I get why you were trying to hide this world from me." I sat up and stared at him. "But you need to know why I was upset. I mean, what if – what if you hadn't come tonight, I hadn't been able to send you the message and I'd just never come back... do you know how that would feel? The not knowing what had happened? Not even getting to say goodbye..."
Guilt flashed on his face and he leant his head back, staring up at the sky. "I really have been a dick."
I wanted us to just stop talking about this but I've realised that I can't do that any more Sometimes you just have to talk about it and get it all out. This is the only way we're ever going to get over it.
"I know," he started. "I realise now that I can't just hide you from it, that doesn't mean that this other side of my life will go away. It's partly true what you said the other day, that I apologised because you got upset, not because I did it. Because I will always do whatever I can to try and keep you happy, Kim. And it wasn't the right thing to do but baby I honestly thought that it was. I didn't realise how much it would affect you – I just thought you were better off not knowing, not worrying. And I seriously, genuinely didn't think that anything was going to happen to me. If for one moment I thought that I was going to die then of course I would have told you... I guess it was just easier to pretend it wasn't happening.
"But I know now that I don't just get to decide things like that. I promise you that I'm never going to give you another reason to not trust me. This is an equal relationship. And if we're gonna be in this relationship for the rest of our lives," his mouth turned up into a grin, "Then I need to learn to share my thoughts so we can make these decisions together. I'm sorry."
I grabbed his face and pulled his mouth against mine. It was warm and comforting and the most heartfelt kiss I'd felt in a while. It was slightly salty from our tears but it was the thing I needed most.
"I love you," he said. "I love you and that's never going to stop."
"I love you too. Nothing's ever going to get in the way of that again."
He pressed his forehead against mine. "Just seeing that thing touch you..."
I took a deep breath and let it out slowly. I touched the cut on my arm. He had to know and now was as good a time as any.
I could feel my eyes prickling with tears and my heartbeat rising. In truth, it was the scariest moment of my life and I'm never going to get over it. It's going to take me a long time to get back to normal. You can't just go through something like this and go back to how you were before. I will never understand how he does it.
"I fell asleep in the car. When I woke up we were here and she was going inside and I should have been more forceful and got her to go back but she just went and I didn't want to be outside alone so I went in because I thought I was being fucking smart but I wasn't I was being stupid. Then all of a sudden he was talking to me and I didn't know what to do and I didn't – I didn't think you were getting the messages and I didn't – I thought I was never going to see you again."
He held me and kissed me and ran his hands through my hair and softly let his fingertips slide over my skin. The things he's always done and knows will calm me down.
"Kim, know that I'm not letting you of my site again." I smiled and he kissed my forehead. "I'm never being in that situation again... I won't live without you and I won't live with you being that scared again. I'm not letting anything happen to you. I should have been protecting you –"
"No, Jared! This wasn't your fault, please believe that."
"I shouldn't have let you go today."
I put my finger under his chin. His massive bum chin that I love so much. "You think I would have listened to you?"
Even though he looked like he was trying very hard not to, his gorgeous lips formed a grin.
"Jared, I think I've learnt my lesson. We don't get anything out of dwelling on the past. All we need to know is that I'm okay, you're okay and that we love each other. At the end of the day that's the only thing that matters. In twenty or fifty years time that's going to be the only thing that matters. Yes we're gonna go through shit – although hopefully a little less dangerous shit – but it's always gonna come down to the fact that I love you and I want to spend every second of my life with you. What's done is done. All I know is that you saved my life and I'm gonna spend my life making up for that."
"Will you pay it back in kisses?" His cheeky smirk returned and I felt my heart shudder. I'm going to be spending the rest of my life falling more and more in love with him.
"You bet," I said, pushing him backwards into the floor of the woods. It was probably very uncomfortable for him but I didn't care, and I doubt he cared either. I kissed him. And then again. And again. "You're gonna really regret asking for it back in kisses."
He shook his head. "Sometimes it's like you don't know me at all." He pulled me close and captured my lips in his. His hand settled on my waist as I trailed kisses down his neck.
"Fuck. I've missed you so much," he murmured. I sat up and stared into his eyes. "I've missed your smell and your touch and your warmth and how soft you are and waking up next to you having you curl up against me and your kisses – and I miss the fucking cuddles!" I giggled.
"I'm telling the pack you said that," I threatened but his smile didn't falter.
"Don't worry – they heard, the nosey fucking bastards... I don't care. I fucking miss your cuddles so bad. What the hell has happened to me?"
I grinned. "My cuddles are pretty good."
"I love you," he said, looking happier than I'd seen him in a while.
"I know," I replied and it felt bizarre. I never actually thought I'd believe that. I never really thought I'd believe in true everlasting love – definitely not soul mates. But, here we are.
"I love you more."
He shook his head. "We're going to be arguing about that for a long time."
I pressed my lips to his. "I look forward to it."
So that's it, Diary. How I nearly died. My story. I really never thought this was going to go this far. So much for being just an ordinary girl.
Jared's currently fast asleep in the chair next to my hospital bed. I shouldn't be here much longer, but they're just checking my cracked ribs haven't caused any further damage. But I'm going to be fine. Jared hasn't left, though. When he said that he wasn't letting me out of his sight, he really meant it. He didn't even like it when I tried to go to the toilet alone so when I forced him to go get this diary, he wasn't pleased but he managed to get back in a couple minutes. His head is currently leant against my leg and his hand cupped mine, holding it tightly against him.
While if I could chose how things have happened I'd definitely do things in a different way (I'm not the 'everything happens for a reason' type of girl), I am happy with how things have turned out. We've been through some ups and downs but I'm glad this is how we've ended up. But really it's not the end of the story, it's just the beginning of a new one. A new chapter. I may not know how many years I'm going to live (and with the stress of being a werewolf's imprint I reckon I've decreased my life expectancy considerably), I know I'm going to spend every one of them with Jared, having many more crazy adventures and exciting tales to come. And I can't wait.
Aah so that's it guys! I think I've got one epilogue but this is the conclusion to their lives at this moment! I hope you guys liked it and please tell me what you thought in a review, I really appreciate it :) I'll hopefully get the epilogue posted soon to fully finish this off. I'm really sad to have to end this but it's nice to know that this is finished.Thanks for reading and everything, and thanks for sticking with it!