Disclaimer: I do not own 'Twilight' nor do I own 'True Blood'/Sookie Stackhouse Novels.
Bella's Point of View
He left me. He left me in the woods all alone. He told me he didn't want me anymore. He said it would be as if he never existed, as if that could happen. He was in my every thought, my every dream, and my every recent memory of this town. I couldn't bring myself to leave Forks though. What if he came back and I didn't know? But he said he didn't want me. I sighed. I should just move on like he said he wanted me to do. How could I though? He was everything to me.
I picked up my backpack and started heading out to my truck. I locked the door on my way out and put the key back over the eave. My favorite, rusty, old, red truck that couldn't reach over fifty miles an hour without protesting was still in the driveway and still working. I got in and put my backpack on the passenger's seat. The truck started up after the first turn and I let it idle a minute to warm up. I had a thick, warm, black parka on that kept me dry and toasty in a place like Forks.
Forks, Washington was the town that the rain inconsequentially came down on the most in the continental United States. It was a small town that was popular among hikers and campers. Being a short ways away from the Olympic mountain range, Forks had a few tourists who came to hike and camp. It was very green. It was too green, an alien planet. The moss clung to the trees and turned them green. It was a very beautiful place though, especially out in La Push at First Beach.
Thinking of La Push reminded me of the time Jacob had told me the stories of the Quileute tribe that he belonged to. They were the stories of their origins, but he wasn't supposed to share. I had faked flirting with him to learn the stories about the Cold Ones, who were also the same family that he belonged to… the Cullens.
I mechanically arrived at the school. Today was even more depressing. The date was January 18, 2006. It was one year since I moved from sunny Phoenix to the damp and depressing town of Forks to spend quality time with Charlie while my loving, erratic, hair-brained mother went on the road with her new husband Phil, who played baseball for a living. It was exactly one year since my first day at Forks High School.
It was also exactly one year since I had met him. On this day last year, I saw him for the first time walk into the cafeteria, and then again as my biology lab partner. He instantly disliked me because he couldn't read my thoughts and because of the strong and wonderful smell of my blood. We ended up falling in love though. I had the most amazing summer of my entire life.
Then, on my eighteenth birthday, one of the most intense things happened. I accidentally cut my finger on the wrapping paper. One drop of blood and the newest member of the coven, Jasper, lost control (since he is still so new to the animal blood diet) and tried to attack me. Although, I don't think they give him enough credit. He feels others emotions, so why can't he feel their thirst too? When he tried to attack me though, Edward pushed me back into the table where there was a glass bowl that cut my arm a lot, so there was even more blood, and then I had six ravenous vampires looking at me wanting my blood.
Carlisle, the voice of reason that day and the local chief of surgeons, calmed everyone and stitched my arm up. A few days later, he broke up with me in the woods. I tried to chase after him but got lost and fell down, a lot. When Sam Uley found me, he took me to Charlie. Dr. Gerandy looked me over and said to keep me warm and to drink lots of fluids and rest.
Ever since then, I have become nothing. I tried to keep it together in front of Charlie, but I know my dad isn't entirely convinced. The only good thing that has happened because of this is my Calculus grade hasn't ever been higher.
I was greeted by my friend Angela Weber once it was time for lunch. She noticed I was even sadder than usual and asked me what's wrong. She is so kind and considerate.
I answered her sadly. "It's been exactly a year since I came to Forks."
She seemed to understand immediately, for which I was thankful. "Maybe you could try and think about creating a fresh start since it's a new year; have hope that this year will be better."
I smiled at Angela. She was a good friend. I just couldn't find it in myself to have that hope right now. I thanked her before resuming pushing around my food on my plate. I hadn't really eaten that much since then and have lost considerable weight. I was now extremely thin to the point of unhealthy. I only ate enough to keep me alive, but barely that. Charlie usually made sure that I ate the food at home for dinner.
After school was finally over, I got in my truck and went home to happily sulk away where no one could see. I finished my homework quickly, within thirty minutes, and started preparing dinner for Charlie. I set about making chicken enchiladas, so I could have something to concentrate on. After the long task of dicing, I put them in the oven to bake and went upstairs. I had turned on my computer earlier so all I had to do was close all the pop-up ads. I checked my e-mail, where I had yet another message from Renee.
Despite my trying, the tenor of my e-mails had alerted her to my depression. She had even called a few times, trying to find out what was wrong. One time she even showed up and she and Charlie tried to get me to go home with her. That was the most alive I had felt since he left. I put up quite the fight.
I answered the e-mail then turned off the computer. I started walking over to my bed when I stepped on a creaky floorboard. I don't remember it being creaky before. I looked down and examined it, where it looked like it had been lifted up previously and removed, so I tugged at the small corner sticking up. Underneath were all the things I thought Edward had taken with him. It was my picture of him at the fated party from my scrapbook, the CD he made with his lullaby for me, the plane tickets from Carlisle and Esme, and a few other trinkets from our time together.
I quickly removed all of them before resealing the floor. I opened the drawer in my nightstand and put all of the stuff in it, except the CD. I put the disc in my player and pressed play. The sound that came through was simply incredible. It made my eyes fill with tears. I pressed the stop button and ran to the bathroom to wipe my eyes. I made myself presentable so Charlie wouldn't know and made my way downstairs.
I opened the oven to check on the enchiladas; and they were perfect. I took them out to cool and started making a salad. As soon as I had finished tossing the mix of vegetables and ranch dressing, Charlie came in the door. He hung his gun up on the hook, after removing the bullets, and came to the kitchen door.
He smelled the air. "Mmm. Smells good, Bells." He smiled.
I smiled back. "Thanks. You came just in time. I just finished."
He chuckled. "Perfect timing then, huh?"
I gave a small laugh back. "Yeah." I saw him staring at me unbelievably, and I didn't know why. I got two plates out, and two forks and knives. I got a glass out for me, and asked Charlie, "What do you want to drink?"
That seemed to snap him out of his stupor as he replied, "Beer, please."
I served the food, handed him his beer, and poured a glass of Coke for me. We ate in silence, but neither of us was uncomfortable with it. That's just how we were. I saw him sneaking glances at me every now and then. The only comment made was Charlie complimenting my cooking skills.
After dinner, I filled up the sink and started washing the dishes. I could hear Charlie vaguely on the phone and watching the news. He was talking to Billy Black, his best friend since before I was born, and the father of Jacob Black. They gossiped like two old women but neither one admitted it. I heard my name mentioned, and couldn't help but overhear my father saying that something was different about me. That it was the first time in months that I had laughed or smiled. He didn't know why, but he was hoping that whatever caused it kept me this way and got me better. Billy must have agreed. Then suddenly there was the sound they play when there is super-breaking news.
"Bella, come in here for a minute," Charlie called me. I dried my hands on the towel and went to the living room. There was a news bulletin saying that the Japanese created and have perfected synthetic blood. They call it TruBlood. I wonder where they got that name from. Then a blonde, short-haired woman in her probably mid-thirties came on the screen and started conversing with the reporter. Her name flashed as Nan Flanagan, under which it said she was a representative of the 'AVL'.
"The blood wasn't created for use in the medical field, though it can be useful there."
The reporter took on a confused look. "Then what was it created for?"
There seemed to be a tense pause before she spoke again. "For us. Hello, America. My name is Nan Flanagan and I am a vampire." At that moment, my heart stopped for a few beats. Also, there was a clicking sound and she flashed the world a fanged smile. Fangs; they had fangs. This was an entirely different kind of vampire than the Cullens.
The reporter gasped. "Are you saying that vampires are real, Ms. Flanagan?"
She smiled again. "Yes. I am. At the American Vampire League, we believe that we can coexist with humans now that we no longer need human blood to survive. We can survive on the new synthetic blood. It was decided with this recent development that we can finally come out of the coffin."
"Are you hearing this?" Charlie asked Billy on the phone. "They're saying vampires are real." He sounded like this was some kind of practical joke.
I could feel my face frozen at the news. As vampires revealed themselves to the public, what would happen now? Would Charlie find out about the Cullens?
I don't know what Billy said to Charlie, but he turned a whole new shade of red.
"Are there any other likenesses to the myths that are in fact reality?" the reporter asked. I was actually curious about that myself.
"Well, most of the myths were started by vampires to hide our existence from humans long ago, but that isn't necessary anymore. That is how we proved we weren't vampires. We can be seen in the mirror, garlic doesn't repel us, and we don't turn into bats. We are susceptible to the sunlight. We do sometimes sleep in coffins, but they can be quite uncomfortable. Like humans, most of us prefer to sleep in beds."
The reporter replied, "Thank you, Ms. Flanagan." She nodded her head before the cameras turned off. "Well, you heard it here citizens. Vampires are real."
She then went on to other stories, and some reactions to the news. I sat there in shock. I relaxed against the back of the chair trying to wrap my head around this. There was another kind of vampires; ones that didn't sparkle in the sunlight. After I finished my thought process and accepted there were other kinds of vampires, and that they were now known to the world, I realized it only took a very short amount of time. It had only been about a minute.
I chanced a look over at Charlie, who was fuming and disbelieving. He was no longer on the phone with Billy. He turned the television off. His gaze turned to me.
"Billy just told me that the Cullens were vampires." Silence fell on the room. I was stunned. He had the nerve to tell Charlie that? They weren't even the same kind of vampire! It wasn't public knowledge.
"What?" That was all I managed to sputter out. It didn't seem sufficient enough to cover everything that was going through my mind, like what are they doing right now, and should I tell Charlie the truth about them, or make it seem like Billy is lying?
I saw the vein in Charlie's forehead pulse. Uh-oh. "Billy told me an interesting story about how the Cullens are actually vampires, but not the same kind. Is this true?"
I got a tense butterfly feeling in my stomach and gulped before I took a deep breath. I opened my mouth to speak, but before I could, he spoke up again.
"Don't even try to lie to me, either, Bella. You're not a good liar anyways." Well, he was right about that. So, in a very reluctant move, I decided to tell him.
"Yes, they're vampires, and not the same kind. However, it wasn't Billy's right to tell you about them. In their world, any human who knows about them is in danger. It is against their law. It's the first rule of vampirism." Edward had told me about the Volturi, the faces from the painting in Carlisle's study. They were the royalty, and the law. You only messed with them if you had a death wish.
Charlie turned another shade darker, where it was tinged with purple. "How long did you know? And what do you mean it's against their law?"
"It's against their law for humans to know about their existence. If you tell them, you can be killed. You can't tell anyone about this, that you know. Okay?" I was panicked at the thought they might find out about us knowing.
He shook his head after a moment. "Okay. I won't tell anyone. I promise." I smiled with relief at that. "You didn't answer the one question though. How long did you know?"
I took a deep breath before I looked down at my hands before answering. "Less than a week before our first date, which was when he took me to play baseball."
His color didn't change. "You knew the risks though? You still liked him?"
I smiled a little at the memory. "He tried to scare me away with cryptic little word plays, but it didn't matter to me because regardless of what he was, he is who I loved. When you're in love, you don't care about what they are, just who they are. They don't feed from humans. They only feed on animals. Sure, they've had slip-ups when they were younger, except for Carlisle. He only ever tasted human blood when he turned them.
"But it would be silly to think that wouldn't happen at some point. It's in their basic nature. They try and stick to the diet as much as possible, but they said animal blood can let you survive, but it doesn't satisfy the cravings completely. Edward once compared it to a human living only on tofu. It keeps you alive but the thirst is still there."
Charlie's color lessened and had nearly returned to normal. He thought about what I said, before saying something. Five minutes had passed. "They only drank the blood of animals?"
I nodded. "Yes. They said they didn't want to be monsters. Carlisle found he could live on animal blood a few months after he was turned. He didn't want to kill anyone, so he went to the woods and isolated himself. One day, a herd of deer passed by and on instinct, he attacked them. He figured that since he had eaten venison in his human life, it would be perfectly fine eating venison as a vampire. The thirst went away and he could think clearly again."
Charlie thought this over. "What about when you came home from the baseball game and went to Phoenix?"
I winced and my hand automatically went to my scar on left wrist. "He was protecting me. There was a group of nomadic vampires that came through the area. One was a tracker and caught my scent. He wanted me. The Cullens thought it would be a good idea to leave the area, to protect you as well. I went to Phoenix, where the hunter caught up with us. He lured me away using an old home video with Renee's voice. He tricked me into thinking he had Mom. I got away from the Cullens, and believe me that wasn't easy." He smirked laughing for a second before going back to serious. "He lured me to my old ballet studio, where he tried to kill me. Edward got there just in time. He saved me. But before the tracker was killed, he bit me. Their kind has venom. If you get bitten, you turn if they don't drain you completely, or suck the venom out. The tracker was killed and Edward sucked the venom out of me. That's why they burned the studio down, to hide the evidence of vampires."
Charlie noticed I was rubbing my wrist the entire time. "Why do you keep doing that?"
I felt a tear start to come to my eye's edge to fall. "It's the scar from where I was bitten."
His eyes widened, but barely perceptibly. He held out his hand, so I handed him my wrist. He looked it over and ran his thumb over it. "It's colder there." I nodded. He gave me my wrist back. "So, he really did protect you, not make you so mad you had to leave?" I nodded again. "Why did you say those words to me then?"
I winced as the guilt from telling him the exact same thing my mother told him when she left came back full force. "It was the only way you'd let me go. The tracker was listening. I couldn't let you find out about vampires." He nodded.
I stood up to go back to the nearly forgotten dishes and finished washing them, letting him think over what he had just found out about. This was surely a lot for him to take in, especially in one night, probably one hour. Once that was done, I went back to the living room to find him a normal, safe color and still sitting in the same position. I had brought him another beer, which he took with a grateful smile. He muttered 'thanks, Bells' before taking a large drink. I sat there awkwardly with my can of ginger ale, waiting patiently for him to speak. Thankfully, it didn't take him long.
"Can vampires go out in the daytime?" he asked unexpectedly.
"Well, the Cullens could, but they were a different kind. They tend to stick to the places with less sun exposure, mainly in the North. The other kind I don't know. They never said anything about them." I wondered if they knew.
He thought over things for a few minutes. "This may seem like an odd question, and normally I wouldn't approve, but you've had to have a bad night, worse than anyone else. Do you want something stiffer to drink?" I nearly fell over in shock. Charlie… is offering me alcohol? This wasn't normal, although neither was tonight. Vampires 'came out of the coffin' as they put it.
"No, thank you." He smiled at that.
"Even now you're an extremely good kid, too good sometimes." Another awkward silence filled the room. "Why have you been lifeless for so long, Bella? Other people move on with their lives." He looked uncomfortable bringing up this subject. I didn't realize he noticed. I thought I did a good job of acting well enough in front of him, but he was practically comparing me to a zombie, lifeless.
"I didn't just lose a boyfriend, Dad." He lifted up an eyebrow inquisitively. "I lost an entire family. Alice was my best friend and sister. Emmett was my teddy bear of a big brother. I didn't get to know Jasper and Rosalie well, but Jasper was beginning to become like a big brother. Esme and Carlisle were like my parents too. Esme was a loving mother, completely opposite of Mom. She did the caring for, not the other way around. I didn't have to be the adult. Carlisle was like a second dad, and he is the best doctor I've ever known." By the end, my voice had grown melancholic and depressed.
Charlie stared at me for a moment before turning away, for which I was grateful. I don't think he realized how much they meant to me. I could tell he was thinking. He glanced at the clock on the wall.
He finally sighed. "Alright, I guess it's time to get some rest for tomorrow. Good night, Bells." He went up the stairs to get ready.
I smiled back. "Good night, Dad."
I glanced at the clock to see that it was almost midnight. Wow. I turned out all the lights and double checked that all the doors were locked before I went upstairs as well. I changed into sweatpants and a t-shirt and brushed my teeth. I turned the CD that Edward gave me on, and then I lied down on the bed. Before I actually fell asleep, I wondered how this would change everything. Would vampires and humans get along well?
Then I realized that ever since I found my missing things, I had no trouble thinking about the Cullens. I even think and say Edward's name without nearly collapsing from pain. I have been able to breathe better. The hole in my chest wasn't as large or strong. It was still there, but you can't expect it to go away overnight. Maybe it was because I realized that he never completely left me. He left part of himself with me subconsciously so he would always be with me. I don't know if he still loved me, but I did know that with knowing he left those mementos with me, leaving part of his self with me, that he did in some way care for me. With this thought on my mind, I fell into a deep sleep. For the first time in months, I had a different dream from the regular nightmare. I didn't wake up Charlie screaming. This dream could only bring me hope for the future.