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The Witch I Used to Know

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I felt adrenaline coursing through my body as I sped after the giant elk running through the forest. The trees whizzed by in a blur as I sped up to catch my prey. I hadn’t hunted in more than two weeks and my thirst was beginning to be unbearable. Just as I was about to make the fatal strike, I fell to the floor in agony. My head felt like it was made of fire, it burned as if I was transforming again. I squeezed my eyes shut to block out the pain, but when I opened them, I was somewhere else entirely. The pain was gone, and I was standing in a field; the trees lining it seemed to make a perfect circle. A girl was sitting in the middle of the meadow with a book on her lap. I tried to see what was in front of her, but my vision got hazy when my sight moved away from her. All I could see was the back of her head, long dark brown hair cascading down her shoulders. She seemed to be waving her arms around, but I couldn’t tell. I tried to get closer, but my legs wouldn’t move. I felt a deep need in my soul to touch her, even just her hair. I pulled at my legs with all my strength, but they were as still as marble. I reached out to touch her, calling out. She seemed to hear me; she turned to look in my direction, but before I could see her face, I found myself back on the forest floor.

Shaking my head, I stood up in confusion. There goes my lunch. The elk I was chasing was long gone. But I couldn’t get the image of that girl out of my head. That burning need to touch her remained. Pushing aside my thirst, I sprinted back towards my home in Anchorage, Alaska. Carlisle, my father of sorts, would know what to do. I slowed to a normal human pace as I reached the front door. I could hear his thoughts coming from his study. He was reading the latest medical journal. I gave Esme, my adopted mother, a swift nod as I passed her and rapped quickly on the study door. “Come in,” Carlisle called.

“Hello,” I greeted him as I entered, “Carlisle, I had a bit of a problem when I was out hunting earlier.”

He put down his magazine and turned to face me, his deep gold eyes were curious. I quickly recounted everything that happened while I was out. He looked out the window in thought.

“I’m not familiar with anything like that, I’m afraid.” He stood still as a statue as he gazed out at the snow-covered forest. “I have a couple of theories, but nothing concrete. Give me a day or two to research, and I’ll let you know if I find anything.”

He turned to smile reassuringly at me, “Now go back out and get something to eat. It doesn’t seem like anything to worry about at the moment.” I nodded my thanks as I dashed out of the house once more.

***
The girl in the meadow was all I could think about for the rest of the week. I barely paid attention in my classes at school, not that it matters; I already have two medical PHDs. I wondered who she was, where she was from, and most importantly, why did I see her? Try as I might to put her from my mind, I couldn’t stop myself from remembering the sunny meadow. I had to get there somehow. Carlisle thought he found a clue, but he was skeptical of its validity. He thought that maybe I had a vision of my own, like my sister Alice. He read that sometimes vampires could get visions of their futures if something drastically important were to happen. Neither of us believed that, though. Carlisle has been around for many years, he even lived with some of the oldest vampires in the world for a time, and he had never heard anything like that happen before. Researching it further lead to dead end after dead end, but I was hopeful I’d find something soon. I kept searching for clues of my own but wasn’t hopeful.

After reading what seemed like a million articles on vampire visions, I decided to take a break and play the piano downstairs for a little while. Rosalie and Emmet were cuddled up on the couch watching a football game, everyone else was out hunting.

“Do you mind if I play for a while? I don’t want to interrupt.” I asked as I sat on the piano bench. ‘Nope, we aren’t paying attention to the game anyway.’ I rolled my eyes at Emmet. He and his sometimes-wife could be disgusting at times. I elected to ignore them and pushed their thoughts to the back of my mind. I started my rendition of Claire de Lune from memory. I added my own flourishes, getting completely lost in the music. All my stress and worries melted away as my fingers danced over the keys in perfect harmony. That is until my head started burning in pain again. “Edward!” I heard Rose yell as I blacked out.

And just like that, I was in the meadow again. The girl was still there, this time standing and looking at me.

“Can you hear me?” I asked her. My voice echoed like I was in the middle of a cavern, and not the woods. I was still unable to move closer, much to my annoyance.

“Yes,” She called in an equally resounding voice, “Who are you?” I tried to read her thoughts, get some answers, but I couldn’t hear anything but my own. Maybe that’s the result of this...vision, thing.

“My name is Edward Cullen, who are you?” I asked in response. A small smile broke upon her face.

“I’m Bella Swan!” She yelled in excitement. “Do you really see me?” She looked absolutely giddy and I couldn’t help but feel some of her elation. “Yes, I do. What’s going on? How is this happening?” As I was speaking, the edges of my vision were turning black.

The girl, Bella, looked panicked. “Come find me, Edward, please!” She asked in despair, “I live in Fo-” But before she could finish, I was on the floor in my own house next to my piano.

“Oh, Edward, what happened?” Rose was holding my head an inch off the floor, Emmet sitting beside her. I groaned as I sat up and rubbed my temples.

“What happened?” I asked. “You were playing your little song one second, and the next you passed out. Rose caught you before you hit the floor and then you instantly woke up,” Emmet explained, “What happened, bro?” They looked me over in concern.

“I-I think I had a vision? Sort of?” I stammered, “I need to talk to Alice. I’m fine, really. Please, go back to your game.”

I stood up and was back in my room before they could answer. Their thoughts were filled with concern for my wellbeing, but I was quite sure that I was okay. I still had more questions, but I at least had one answer. I needed to find out who this Bella Swan was.

“Alice, I have a problem,” I hurriedly explained my vision to her, “What does this mean? Can you see anything?”

“It’s all hazy, you’re changing your mind every five seconds! Pick something and breathe,” She waved me off as she started pacing the room. Taking a steady breath, sat down at her desk and went over all my options. I could google ‘cities that start with Fo’ but that would lead me nowhere. I could try to have another vision, but I don’t even know how the last two happened. One thing was certain, I was going to find this girl.

“Ah-ha!” Alice’s yell startled me out of my reverie, “Forks! She lives in Forks!” Images of a small rainy town flashed through her mind.

“Where is it?” Spinning the chair around and pulling up the browser, I typed in ‘Forks, USA’ as fast as I could. The first result was for a hotel in Forks, Washington. Without a word, Alice handed me her wallet and I booked a nice room at Woodland Inns for tomorrow.

“As soon as you made up your mind to find her I saw you crossing the town line. I’ll keep checking on you and let you know if I find anything more.” She squeezed my shoulder lightly before she sauntered out of the room. Before the sun had fallen, my bag was packed, my goodbyes were bid, and I was running out of Anchorage.

***
I made it to the sleepy town in less than an hour. After finishing off a few deer I found nearby, I checked in to my hotel and set up my laptop. It was so much easier to find people in the phonebook, why did they ever do away with that? I pulled up White Pages and searched up Bella Swan. No results. That was a waste of five bucks. She had to be here somewhere! Maybe someone in town knows her. I’ll just go to a local diner and listen around; hopefully, someone will think of something useful for once. I perused the pamphlet left on the dresser and found The Lodge. It looked nice enough.

When I got there, the hostess couldn’t stop staring at me. I’ve gotten used to it over the years, but it was still rude. I tried my best to ignore her thoughts as she led me to my table. She was very intrigued that I was alone and hoped I would ask her when her shift ended. I smiled at her politely and pretended to browse the menu. It was difficult to pull apart the thoughts and spoken words from everyone in the restaurant. Most of them were just the usual dull monotony of life.

I perked up when I heard an old man across the way speak, “Bella has been dying to see Jacob. Are you sure he’s still sick? It’s been two months!” Glancing in the direction of the voice, I noticed an old man in a wheelchair talking to a younger man with a mustache.

“I’m sorry Charlie, there isn’t much I can do. Forks hasn’t had a good doctor in years, not since Dr. Whale retired.” My eyes focused on the younger man. He was in a police uniform and his tag read ‘Sherrif Swan’. Eureka!

A waiter came up and asked me what I would like. I picked some random slab of meat and he left to place my order. I never took my focus off the two men. They drabbled on and on for over an hour talking about sports, the weather, fishing. Finally, the old man, Billy, mentioned that he needed to rest and check on his son. I flagged down the waiter and paid, silently following after Sheriff Swan.

I ran through the trees next to his police car as he drove down the winding roads. I watched as he turned down a residential street and decided to wait for nightfall. His cop car would be easy enough to spot. I would finally meet the elusive Bella Swan.