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The Shift

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The woods around the reservation are always calming. They may seem desolate and lonely at times but Leah doesn't mind, the calm is the reason she comes to the woods; in her human form, to keep the packs out of her head, and barefoot to feel the textures of earth beneath her. It's near sundown so the colors in the sky are sharp and spectacular. The tone of the woods seems to reflect the change of day; small patches of light on the earthy floor trying to hold on to the daylight while shadows start to creep in.

Soon enough, the shadows win, and the sounds of night begin. Owls hoot as they search for their next meal. Possums scurry through the underbrush. Bats fly above. A steady cooling breeze rustles the leaves. Even the slimy sliver of slugs moving against the bark of the trees hits Leah's ears. The distant howling she hears let's her know that members of her pack are on patrol. Jacob and Embry; she can tell by their howls. Leah doesn't have a patrol shift for another two days, so she walks to try and clear her mind and dispel some of the anger and confusion that has been plaguing her since before she became a member of the pack.

After the confrontation with the Volturi eight months ago everyone went back to their happily ever afters. Jacob split his time between helping to train the younger members of his pack, spending time cooing over his nearly fully grown mate and "bonding" with her family (Leah frequently rolls her eyes at Jacob and Emmett's bromance), and running the mechanic business he had started with Leah. Seth and the younger pack members study their academics while training with the older pack members comes after school; a rule that Leah was able to institute being Jacob's beta. Honing your skill as a fighter and protector of the people is all well and good, but they are not the only skills a young wolf needs to survive in the world. Quil splits his time between helping to babysit his young mate Claire and his pack duties. Embry probably has it the easiest; the protection of their people is his only real responsibility, though he does help at the garage that Jacob and Leah run.

Then there's Sam's pack. Leah has to constantly fight to keep a growl or grumble from sounding in her chest when she thinks about them. Sure they'd been united to stand with the Cullens against the Volturi, but that was really only because of Jacob's influence. She is still grateful to her alpha for breaking away from Sam's pack and giving her an out; saving her from constantly having to see Sam and Emily's lovey doveyness and from dealing with Sam's pack and their quiet jeering because she just had to be the only female wolf in the history of the tribe. Leah mostly understands about imprinting now; she was never meant to be Sam's, just as Sam was never meant to be hers. But the feelings she had while they were together were real and it still hurt sometimes; no one seemed to understand that before, except her brother and Jacob.

Since joining Jacob's pack Quil and Embry have come to understand her anger, and they no longer tease her about it. Nor do they tease her about being the only female; especially now since she's their superior. Their pack is actually pretty tight knit and fiercely loyal to each other; the boys seldom let a bad word about Leah go without standing up for her. To Sam's almost credit on the situation, he has been coaxing his pack to leave the issue alone; but they don't always listen and Sam usually gives the "order" with a not well enough hidden grin.

It's all so damn absurd and repetitive, Leah thinks as she continues her walk. Thanks to some help from Alice, she's become a bit of a wiz at schooling her thoughts. She can't always keep others out of her mind when she's in wolf form, but she's better at doing so than all the other wolves. Leah still has no love for vampires, but, she has gotten better at keeping her rage in check when it comes to the Olympic coven. She'll probably never admit it out loud, but she has a great respect for Carlisle and Esme. And she couldn't help, reluctantly as it were, becoming friends with Alice. The way that started, kind of went back to Sam.

Leah growls as once again her thoughts are lead back to him. Her jaws clench as do her fists as she kicks a small tree. After joining Jacob's pack Leah began to become acquainted with the Cullens. She was only there because of Jacob, so she often opted to stay outside; standing guard if you will, mulling over how wrong it was to have Sam leave her like he did, and trying to figure out why she was cursed to be the only female to ever shift in the tribe. Alice began to shadow her one day while she was walking the perimeter of the Cullen House. A few days had passed before they actually spoke. Leah all but yelled at her quiet companion wondering why she was being stalked. Alice's reply turned out to be a question.

"It hasn't happened yet has it?"

Naturally Leah's confusion took over, until Alice shared a vision with her; a vision that Leah could not handle. The wolf's confusion and fear at what she saw caused her to instantly shift. Alice hadn't flinched, even when Leah growled and barked at her. She turned and ran when Jacob, Emmett, Seth, and Esme came outside to see what the matter was.

It had taken her a week to get her head together enough that she could be anywhere near the Cullen house. Another week still before she could speak to Alice. And when the it finally happened, Leah's world quietly imploded around her, and Alice was there to help her stay standing; to be a shoulder to cry on; to teach her how to keep it hidden from her pack until she was ready for the information to be known; if she were ever to be ready. Jacob knows something is off, he just doesn't know what.

Leah halts her thoughts and stops walking. She's at the edge of the woods right behind the Cullen's house. She closes her eyes and tries to force herself to turn around and go back the way she came. But her body pays her no heed. Her feet stay planted where they are and her eyes look up; just as they've done nearly every night the past few weeks. She always looks to the same window; always searches, for her.

Leah doesn't see her clearly at first. Only patches of pale skin flitting about the darkened room. But then the body … bodies rather, settle in one place, naked against the all glass wall that faces the woods. Leah is powerless to look away, even though she desperately wants to. Her anger spikes. The fingernails hidden in her balled fists cut in to her palms. A low growl resonates in her chest. She almost takes a step forward, but she manages to close her eyes and block the dreadful vision.

Seconds later she shifts. Her wolf's heavy breathing causing small tufts of vapor to rise in to the night. She manages to take a few steps back into the shadows of the woods, but she can't bring herself to leave. Not when a particular scent hits her nose, and certainly not when golden eyes meet hers; golden eyes that sear her very soul; golden eyes that make something else begin to shift in Leah's body. She doesn't know what it is, but the feeling starts in her chest and steadily moves lower. There's a sensation akin to pulling and stretching at her core; a swelling and hardening; a transformation.

Leah tries to clear her head, to stop whatever spell the golden eyes have over her. But her attempt is feeble and half-hearted, so she stops fighting. She lets the feelings engulf her. Her nether regions are on fire; there's an ache there that she's never felt before. As she loses herself in golden eyes, the ache gets worse. She's panting now. She needs some type of counter pressure, some type of friction. She doesn't know how she knows that, but she feels it to be fact.

She drops her hind legs and lower half then grinds her pelvis into the soft grassy ground. Golden eyes get brighter when they view the wolf's action. The eyes grow brighter still when Leah repeats the move. Pale palms reach out and touch the wall of glass; almost like their trying to reach for Leah. A stray thought fuels Leah's anger as she continues to move. The other body in the bed, it shouldn't be there. It shouldn't be touching the golden-eyed beauty.

Leah.

The wolf hears her name as a breathless whisper full of need in her mind. It feels like a gentle caress; like pale fingers combing through her hair. She answers in kind. With a steady growl as her movements increase in speed; her golden-eyed watcher matches her movements; eyes now shining as bright as the sun. Leah can almost feel her. Her anger flares. She should be feeling her. Her front paws dig in to the earth as her movements seem to get more ridged; more forceful. The sounds of moaning and heavy breathing mix with the heady scent of sex in the air. Her growls get louder.

That other body should not be there. He shouldn't be touching her. Leah is the only one allowed to touch her so intimately; the only one allowed to make her feel such pleasures. She belongs to Leah. The wolf's growls quickly turn to barks as one word repeats itself in her mind.

Mine.

Mine.

MINE!

Leah can't take it anymore, she has to stop him. She only gets to take a few steps towards the Cullen house before she's met by an immovable force. Before she can blink she's dragged into the shadows; away from her mate. She hears the echo of her shiny-eyed mate's scream, so she struggles harder, but it's no use. Her mate's scent is leaving her; she's being moved farther and farther away.

"Leah?"

Leah doesn't register her name being called.

"Leah, you have to calm down!"

Only one thing is on her mind; getting back to her mate.

"Leah, damn it, settle down!"

Alice and Jasper struggle to keep the wolf contained. Had they arrived home a minute later, Leah likely would have killed their brother.

As they roll on the ground trying to get Leah under control, Jasper notices the change between the wolf's legs. In a last ditch effort he grips the wolf's hardened sex and begins to quickly stroke while using his full power to calm her. It takes a few minutes, but it works. Leah's body reaches orgasm and the wolf trembles and howls in to the night air. Seconds later, she's still trembling, but human Leah is back and she's crying; holding on to Alice for dear life as Jasper lies next to them. He doesn't need to breathe, but he feels exhausted and can't help but mimic the action of trying to catch his breath.

He hears Alice whispering words of comfort to their friend while he calms himself. He feels for Leah. Love is never supposed to be a bad thing, but living in the world that they do, love can be a bitch to deal with. It's easy for Jacob to accept his half vampire mate; she's the daughter of one of his best friends. But Leah's had a rough history where love is concerned; not to mention everything else she's had to deal with since she became a wolf. Jasper understands this.

"I can't do this. I don't even know what's happening to me … to my body. I-I just can't. I … I need to leave this place," Leah whispers through her tears.

"You don't need to go anywhere Leah," Jasper replies as he rolls over and wraps his arms around both ladies, "we can help you. Carlisle would be happy to help in any way he can if we asked him. And if you would just talk to Rosalie…"

"I'm not talking to anybody about anything," Leah cuts him off. "This is embarrassing enough." She tries to get up but two pairs of strong arms hold her steady.

They know they can't let her walk away like this. It would hurt her just as much, or more, than it would hurt their sister. Jasper thinks Rosalie knows; he's positive that Alice thinks so as well. But Rosalie being who she is won't take the first step; especially when Leah in her human form still seems to completely reject the idea. Rosalie doesn't take rejection well. Jasper is actually a little afraid that his friend and his sister might self destruct if this goes any further south.

He uses his power to push calming energy through Leah. Eventually the she-wolf is calm enough to speak without bursting in to tears or yelling. Late in the night Leah falls asleep; Alice rests with her. Because of her and Jasper's connection to another wolf in Leah's pack, they are able to reach a state of rest that somewhat resembles sleep. Once he sees that both ladies are settled, Jasper goes for a walk.

Unbeknownst to the trio, eyes are watching them.


Several miles away Jared stands at attention watching Leah with the vampires. Though he can't hear them, he thinks he can decipher the situation just fine. His anger is at its boiling point by the time Leah closes her eyes. Sam stands next to him. Through their telepathic link Jared shares what he sees and his conclusions on the situation. Sam shares his sentiment; but he reigns in his anger. The alpha wolf is almost as happy as he is angry. This could just be the thing for him to tell Sue about that will make her persuade her children to rejoin his pack. Despite the truce with Jacob to work together protecting the Quileute lands, Sam has never stopped wanting Leah and Seth to return to his pack; Leah especially.

When Jacob first turned, he told Sam he didn't want a position of power; yet Jacob is alpha of his own pack now. Sam's kept it quiet, but he's been growing envious of Jacob. Jacob was able to rally vampires and shape-shifters alike to a common good; to fight together if necessary. Jacob has friends in high places; most of them vampires, but Sam can see their usefulness. Sam realizes he doesn't need much from the outside world, but having friends with influence never hurt anyone. Jacob's mate is part vampire; immortal. As long as Jacob keeps shifting, he won't age; the couple can live lifetimes together. Sam doesn't have that luxury with Emily. And the potential power that Jacob and Renesmee's offspring may have? Sam shudders as he thinks about the threats that may come to his people from one of their own; but at the same time, he wants that power under his control.

That's why he wants Leah back; he needs as much power in his pack as possible for whatever may come in the future. Leah's special. Being a shifter in the tribe is an honor. They're almost royalty. And Leah? She's the only female to have been given that great honor; there had to have been a reason for that. Sure the boys in his pack give her a hard time and he's always lax about it when he tells them to stop, but it's only so Leah doesn't get a big head about the whole thing; so she wouldn't notice how special she really is. Of course that way of thinking has backfired on him because it only helped to drive Leah to leave him and join Jacob's pack, but Sam's determined to correct the situation.

The only two people that really know what's going on in Sam's mind is Jared and Emily. He's so thankful for Emily; his world would be empty without his mate, and she understands him; understands what he has to do. He loves his wife, but he still feels a certain way about Leah; he still needs her close. It pains him a great deal that she left him. Jacob may be a hard mind to change, but if Sam can get Leah back he knows Seth will follow. If he has them both back, it won't be so hard to sway Jacob; after Jacob, the rest of the cubs will follow. He'll find a way to convince Jacob to step down so that he will be the only true alpha. Sam's not sure how he'll do it, but he knows he must. He has to protect the future of his people.

The vision that was told to him is all that he's been thinking of. The battle with the Volturi vampires was avoided months ago; but it was only the beginning. The Volturi leader only backed down because he knew he would die that day if he didn't. Aro is greedy, he will come back in far greater numbers to try and claim his prizes; and it won't be just the Olympic coven under attack. Aro knows that some of the shape-shifters of La Push have some extra abilities; he thinks he can use them as well. In the elder's vision, Leah's child is a key component in saving them all. Sam wants to father that child. But to do so, he knows he has to get Leah to come to him willingly.


In another part of the woods, keen ears are tilted forward listening with rapt attention. Having been out hunting with Alice and Jasper, Seth has heard his sister's plight. He stays in the shadows when the vampires run to Leah's aide; but he follows them from a distance.

His heart aches for his sister. Things have been rough for her since Sam first shifted. Although his ears hear the conversation Leah is having with Alice and Jasper, he knew before hand what was wrong. He was there when Leah imprinted on Rosalie. In all honesty, he's elated. He likes Rosalie. The blonde is every bit the hot head that his sister is and if anyone can handle Leah, it's Rosalie. But he's also sad, because neither woman seems to want to fully accept their connection.

Rosalie knows that Leah has imprinted on her. Seth saw the recognition in her eyes when it happened. Leah had left as fast as her feet could carry her, and Rosalie had almost immediately followed her … almost; but the vampire opted to let it be, and had simply left, going in the opposite direction Leah had. Seth was sure that he had seen tears forming in Rosalie's golden eyes that day.

He wants to talk to his sister and let her know that he's here for her; convince her to talk to Jacob and the rest of their pack, but he doesn't want to betray the trust that he's been given. He knows pretty much everything that Leah has been going through for the same reason Jasper does; Alice told them. It's not that the vampire gossips, she would never betray anyone that confides in her; but she also doesn't keep secrets from her mates.

That's the number one reason Seth wishes his sister would talk to him, because then he could tell her that her situation is not at all as complicated as she thinks it is. It happened while Alice and Jasper were leaving to find witnesses to speak to the Volturi. Seth had felt the need for a run that night, and he happened to cross paths with the couple. All movement had stopped when each caught the others' eyes. After a few moments Seth shifted back to human form and faced a smiling Alice and wide-eyed Jasper.

"Told you so."

Alice had spoken the words with a giggle to Jasper. Seth chuckles as he remembers the moment he found out that a shape-shifter could imprint on not just one, but two people. But when he thinks about it, his boyfriend and girlfriend are really one soul that simply resides in two bodies; his addition made their union, their bond, just that much more stronger … more complete. He is a part of them that they didn't even know they were missing, until fate deemed it the right time that he found them.

Seth hears Leah howl and his chest clenches again. He wants to comfort her; confide in her about his mates so she won't feel such confusion and anger about her imprint. Alice has a shield over their minds to ensure that no one finds out their secrets. It worries Jasper and Seth sometimes because it takes its toll on Alice; they don't like her being in pain. But Alice has told them that the sibling rivalry between Edward and Rosalie could take a turn for the worst if it becomes common knowledge that Rosalie is Leah's imprint. Edward is already suspicious because he's become aware of the fact that he can't readily read the inner thoughts of most around him anymore. Rosalie learned long ago how to block Edward's power and Alice has taught Leah how to do so as well. Carlisle and Esme are the only other ones that know everything; so Alice has been shielding their minds, as well as her mates', and her own.

Seth's thoughts come to a halt when he feels one of his mates approaching. He shifts back to human form and sighs when cold arms embrace him from behind. A perk of their bond is they no longer need words to speak. Seth assumes it's the power of their imprint that allows him to speak with Alice and Jasper telepathically; the same way all the shape-shifters speak to each other in wolf form.

"You seem more worried tonight than most love," Jasper inquires.

"There's plenty to worry about. They're slowly tearing each other apart by fighting this and they don't even know it," Seth replies.

"I know," Jasper says after a few moments of quiet reflection. "By the way, I'm sorry about how I had to handle Leah earlier. Her anger was fueled mostly by her lust and there really wasn't much else we could do."

Seth chuckles, "I know. You don't need to apologize, I understand the situation. Are they still asleep?"

"Leah is, and Ali, well … she's as asleep as we can get. I got up because I could feel you. It's not just Leah that you're thinking about."

"You were being watched." Seth replies.

"Watched? By who? I didn't hear or sense anyone else close."

"They're not close. Some of us shifters have extra gifts too remember. I think my gift has been upgrading. I can hear farther distances than before, and lately I've noticed I don't have the range problem with the other wolves anymore."

"What do you mean by range problem?"

"You know we can hear each others' thoughts and talk to each other when we're in wolf form; what you probably didn't know is that if we are too far away from each other, the link is broken. I don't have to worry about that anymore. And thanks to Alice, no one knows I'm in their head unless I want them to know. I think it's a weird mix of our powers because of the imprint."

"Who was watching us?"

"Sam and Jared."

Seth breathing picks up and his fists clench. Jasper holds him just a little tighter before stretching out on the soft grass and pulling Seth down with him.

"Something's coming; the way they were talking and the thoughts that Sam was having … I think they're going to try to do something to Leah. I really think it's time we told everyone about us; we're all stronger when we're united and not keeping secrets. They may not like it, but we have to get Leah and Rosalie to at least acknowledge each other."

Jasper feels Seth's anger and fear. He uses his power to calm his young lover, yet he now worries for Leah just that much more; and for the first time in a long time, he worries for what the future may hold.


Why did her afterlife have to be so stupid? She was content; albeit not completely happy, but she was okay where she was. She was fine with Emmett and their awesome, but stupid crazy, adoptive family. Why did shit have to change?

She wants to blame Bella; because if that idiot girl hadn't moved to Forks, then maybe at least half of the shit that her family has dealt with over the past few years would not have happened. She would still be perfectly content and mostly in love with her husband and she wouldn't feel like she needed to walk on egg shells around her family or extended family.

But Bella is here. And Bella fell in love with her thinks he's holier than thou brother. And then those two had a hybrid super baby. Rosalie punches a low hanging branch off a tree at that thought … she loves her niece but she still hates that Bella was able to have the baby; fucking Bella. Bella's best friend is a shape-shifter. And that best friend just happens to be the mate of Bella's baby; so there are always stray puppies running around her home now, further reminding her of what she doesn't have. And Jacob and his puppies just had to, as they say, "get cool" with her husband. Their rainbow worthy bromance makes Rosalie question Jacob's imprint sometimes; especially when that Embry boy is around making googly eyes at Emmett.

Wait.

Rosalie stops moving mid-step. It finally dawns on her; it's the only thing that makes sense. She growls and turns around to leave the woods. She's not angry at what she's just realized, yet, she's pissed because seriously what the fuck is wrong with her family? Vampires and werewolves, whether they are shape-shifters or children of the moon, didn't mix or socialize in any way. They have a treaty with the local shape-shifters for a reason. The tribe stays on the tribe's side of the border and her coven stays on their side of the border. But no, Bella had to come in and make friends with everybody and now all those lines are blurred.

Because of Bella, there are now two wolf packs instead of one. One pack that in the past wanted Bella dead and one pack that swore to protect her. One pack with members who are content to stay on the tribe's side of the border and one pack that seems intent on driving Rosalie fucking crazy because they are always around and most of them are almost always happy and chipper at obscene times of the day and, yeah fine, sometimes their presence might be nice, and sometimes being around them makes her feel like if she had a heart it would be beating wildly in her unmoving chest because every time, every fucking time she sees her … all she wants to do is kiss her.

Rosalie stops walking and almost sinks to the ground. Her back rests against a large tree trunk as her thoughts consume her. It's like when Carlisle first turned her all over again. She didn't know who Edward was then, but he didn't know who she was either; who the hell was he to say she wasn't good enough? And now again, fate for whatever reason sees her as its personal play thing; connecting her to someone that doesn't want her. It shouldn't bother her really, because she doesn't want to be with the lone she-puppy anyway. But still, why would fate be so cruel? Is she really that horrible of a person?

Sure in the beginning she was snide and hateful towards Jacob and all the shape-shifters but now, at least with Jacob's pack, whatever aggressive banter they may exchange is just how they mess with each other. There's no malice behind the words and there's always a smirk or roll of the eyes to signify that their so called hate is really just a game … except where one particular member of the pack is concerned.

There are no words exchanged with Leah. Just looks when Rosalie walks into a room that the beta wolf is occupying. The looks never last long, and Leah always quickly vacates whatever space they briefly share. Half the time Leah doesn't even come inside; unless it's to get Alice. Then those two leave to goodness knows where and Rosalie is left to wonder what Alice has that she doesn't; why is being in Alice's company so sought after; why does she have to witness Leah constantly walking away from her?

But it doesn't even matter because she couldn't care less about whatever Jacob's second in command wants to do. It just boggles Rosalie's mind because Alice is always so damn happy and glass is half full and Leah just isn't so what the hell could they possibly be doing for each other?

"This is so fucking stupid," Rosalie whispers into the night air.

She hadn't even noticed the time going by. She's been getting so lost in her thoughts lately; thoughts of Leah; of what they could, but probably will never be. She doesn't know that much about imprinting, but from what she's seen of Jacob and Renesmee, she can guess that it's a powerful and true love; if there is such a thing as true love. Regardless, such a thing is obviously not meant for her. She just needs to steel herself; stop letting the wolf claim so much of her mind.

But then, Leah doesn't make it easy; she teases Rosalie. There's been many a night that Rosalie has felt eyes watching her. Many a night she's peered in to the darkness outside of her bedroom and felt Leah there; she's even been quick enough to catch the wolf's eyes a few times. And those times, for the few moments they were connected, everything was still and right with the world. And maybe, just maybe, Rosalie might think … hope, that when daylight chases those nights away and Leah isn't hiding behind the wolf, that they'll talk or … something.

No. Leah diverts her eyes and leaves and Rosalie is left to wear her mask of non-caring indifference. Because it doesn't matter that she's unwanted; it doesn't matter that every time the shifter walks away she feels a pain like she's never felt before; it doesn't matter that she leaves out the back door every time it happens because she will not let anyone, least of all Jacob's fucking litter, see her cry.

Rosalie stops walking; she hadn't even noticed that she had gotten back on her feet. She wipes her face and stares at the liquid reflecting the moonlight on her fingers. That's been happening more and more lately; her crying. It always takes her a bit to notice that she's crying because she hasn't shed tears in decades.

"What the fuck is happening?" Rosalie asks as she wipes the unwanted liquid away on her jeans. "I so don't have time for this bullshit."

She speeds up her steps, until she's at a dead run. She makes it home in a short amount of time; she's happy to see that no one else is there. She doesn't want to deal with Carlisle or Esme and their looks of concern, or with Jacob and his yappy puppies, and she certainly doesn't need to see Bella and Edward with his stupid inquisitive glare because she blocks him from reading her thoughts; her thoughts are none of his fucking business anyway.

Rosalie almost feels an urge to break something. She paces around the living room to try and calm down. She considers hunting again but she doesn't have the patience. The back door slams shut and she stops pacing. Emmett looks like he's in a mood, just like she is. They seem to have the same thought pattern after staring at each other for awhile. Their movements are blurred as they move through the house. Clothes are torn and tossed away haphazardly. By the time they make it to their room they're fully naked. They push each other; rough sex is kind of their forte. A few things get knocked over, but Rosalie pays them no mind. She needs this.

Emmett presses her against the large glass wall that overlooks the woods. He hits a pleasurable spot inside her and she moans. That's when she feels it; eyes burning in to her back. She pushes away from the wall and all but tosses Emmett onto his back on the bed. She purposely positions him so she can straddle his body and look out in to the woods. It doesn't take long. Shining eyes are staring at her from the tree line.

A ravenous need sparks inside Rosalie; a need to get to the wolf staring at her so intently. She swears she can feel the same need coming from the wolf. She shivers when she sees a certain part of the wolf's body graze the soft grass on the ground. When the wolf does it again, Rosalie's hips move in time with it. She can't help it. A very small voice inside her head is telling her how wrong this is; how wrong it is to be having sex with your husband while fantasizing about an overgrown dog. But that's when she notices Emmett's movements. They match hers yes, but she's getting the feeling that they are not quite meant for her.

She ignores that thought. The only thing she wants to focus on is the wolf in the woods. She wishes she could touch her. Her hands seem to move of their own accord and they brace against the glass wall. The wolf's hips seem to move with more purpose, so Rosalie's answer in kind. She knows that it's Emmett moving beneath her, but all she feels is her wolf.

Leah.

She moans the name in her head; barely stopping herself from saying it out loud. She's not sure what this … energy is that connects her to the wolf, but she feels it getting stronger by the second. Every part of her being is calling to the wolf. Rosalie thinks that if her heart were still beating, it would skip a beat when the wolf starts to move towards her. Her pale hips speed up with renewed vigor; her wolf is coming to get her.

Just as quickly as the thought of Leah coming for her develops in her mind, the wolf is gone; pulled into the shadows of the woods by blurs that look to her eyes like Alice and Jasper.

Rosalie punches a hole in the thick glass and screams her frustrations.

"Nnnooooo!"

Before she can do anymore damage Emmett grabs her and pushes her away from the wall.

"What the hell is wrong with you?" Emmett asks.

Rosalie doesn't answer. She stares at Emmett like she's just remembered he was even there.

"Seriously Rose these mood swings are getting out of control and I'm sick of it," Emmett states.

Rosalie scoffs and laughs bitterly as her eyes squint at her husband.

"Don't you dare," she starts, "do not stand there with that fake as hell woe is me bullshit coming out of your mouth. Both you and I know damn well I am not who you were fucking just now."

Emmett's only reaction is to stare. He tries twice to say something, anything, but nothing seems good enough to explain.

"Thought so," Rosalie says. "You know, you could have just told me."

"It's not like that Rose," Emmett tries to explain but Rosalie cuts him off.

"I can still smell him on you! I guess it's a good thing that I don't have to worry about bug bites or diseases cause I'd really hate to catch fleas."

"Look, you're only catching his scent because I was hanging out with Jacob and…"

"And what? Your little boyfriend showed up to suck you off before you had to go home to your terrible wife."

"Nothing like that happened! Will you just let me fucking talk? I only just found out okay! I mean, I knew I liked when he came over with Jacob and the other guys but as the feeling got stronger I just … I don't know exactly how it works Rose, but somewhere along the line Embry imprinted on me. He had begged the pack not to say anything before because he was afraid of how I would react."

"How sweet. And how long did it take for you to get him on his knees?"

"I told you, nothing like that has happened. Please, do not talk about my mate like that," Emmett says the words with deadly finality.

A shape-shifter has imprinted on him and he accepts the position it puts him in. A divorce is imminent. She knew it was coming, but it didn't make it hurt any less.

"Your mate?" Rosalie scoffs, "that's real cute Emmett."

"Oh don't act like it's just me Rose; okay. Do you think I'm blind? You could have came and talked to me too. You and Leah…"

He doesn't get to finish the sentence. Rosalie's palm collides with his face, knocking him back a few steps.

"Me and Leah what? There is no fucking me and Leah! Because in case you haven't noticed…"

Rosalie stops when her voice cracks. Is she really ready to speak out loud about this? If he asks how and why there are tears rolling down her face what is she to say? How does Emmett even know? Does anyone else know?

"In case … you haven't noticed … she doesn't particularly … care … for my company." Rosalie looks out the window to the spot Leah had stood on. She can't stop the tears or the tremble in her voice. "No one ever … wants to stay with me," she whispers as she turns to face him again. "So you see … Emmett … there was never … anything … for me to tell you."

Emmett feels every bit of the pain in Rosalie's words. He hadn't meant for them to end this way. He didn't want to see her hurt. He genuinely thought she and Leah had already connected. He wraps his large arms around Rosalie and holds her.

Arms that used to make her feel loved and wanted, now feel foreign. Rosalie pushes him away and shakes her head while walking backwards towards their en suite.

"I don't need your pity Emmett."

She slams the bathroom door and manages to hold it together long enough to get under the shower; hoping that it masks the sound of her sobs.

Emmett doesn't want her to be alone. He starts to walk towards the door; he'll break it down if he has to.

"Emmett."

His father's voice stops him. He hadn't even noticed when Esme and Carlisle had gotten home.

"Let Esme talk to her. Get dressed, come walk with me," Carlisle says.

Emmett recognizes that it's neither a request nor a suggestion. He does as he's told, and leaves Rosalie to Esme.


Esme gives Rosalie thirty minutes of solitude; not a second more. She walks into her daughter's bathroom and finds her sitting, curled up in a little ball with her chin on her knees. The sobbing has stopped, but silent tears are still making their way down Rosalie's cheeks. Esme shuts off the shower and her worry increases. Rosalie still hasn't moved.

Esme carefully and slowly brushes Rosalie's hair out of her eyes and behind her ears. Only then does Rosalie acknowledge her; but Esme doesn't like what she sees in the blonde's eyes.

"Are you okay?"

Esme knows she isn't, but she doesn't want to push too hard.

"I'm sorry if I ruined any plans you and Carlisle may have had."

"Our first priority is always the welfare of our children Rosalie; you know that. And we were just out hunting, so no plans ruined."

"Okay," Rosalie replies then looks away.

"Come on, let's get you out of here," Esme says.

Rosalie allows Esme to pick her up and dress her. Her hair is mostly dry by the time she finds the will to speak again. She's her usual self; even though Esme can see past the mask. She's dismissive about everything and when Esme calls bullshit, she simply says, "I'll work it out Mom. It's not that big of a thing."

Esme lets her get away with it. She's not psychic and she can't read minds, but she's always been very in tune with her charges, especially Rosalie; she knows what Rosalie is preparing herself for. She doesn't like it, but she'll still support the blonde's decision. She has to let Rosalie find herself.


To be continued…

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