They had argued and discussed it for months of course.
Edward said he would not turn Bella into a vampire until after they were married. Bella had said that was stupid. They went back and forth.
The truth was, Bella didn’t even know if she wanted to get married period. Her parents had gotten married so young and it hadn’t turned out well. Besides, her and Edward’s relationship had been on the rocks for a while now. She wanted to be a vampire, had to be a vampire. The Volturi had declared it so. Bella had thought that perhaps he could turn her and then she would see the mate bond.
She had thought wrong.
It was June 20th, 5 days after the battle with Victoria, Edward’s birthday. Edward insisted Bella come over for dinner. Well, Bella ate, and the Cullens talked. Bella sat in between Rosalie and Edward as she ate, her mind wandering away from the conversation.
She felt herself getting drawn back by a light touch on her arm. She glanced over at Rosalie who had an eyebrow raised towards her. Bella just gave her a small smile she hoped was reassuring. Rosalie moved her arm away even if she didn’t seem convinced.
Edward clinked her glass with a fork silencing the table. “Attention. I have something to say,” The table fell silent. “As you know Bella is to be turned soon. This is why I think there is no better time to do this.” Bella felt time slow down as he knelt down and she stared at him in horror. No, not here, not now.
“Isabella Marie Swan.”
“Please-” Bella’s voice was near a whisper but she knew everyone in the room heard it.
“You are my light in the darkness of this dreaded existence. I want to spend my eternity with you, and I think you feel the same way. So, Bella, will you marry me?”
Bella stared at him, meeting his golden eyes. She wanted to be a part of this family so bad. But this wasn’t the way.
Bella arrived home, pissed off at Jacob. What right did he have to take her dirtbike from her? Her one link back to Edward snatched just as quickly as everything else had been.
“All the trouble my family went through, and yet here you are.”
Bella turned to see Rosalie Hale sitting on the stairs to Bella’s porch. She stood up.
“Are you back?” Bella asked, referring to the Cullens.
“I never left,” Rosalie said. Her voice was a sneer. “Someone had to keep an eye on you.”
“And you volunteered?”
“Listen here, Swan ,” Rosalie said. “I’m not here for you. I’m here because if the Volturi finds out we knew you knew about us and just left, all of my family could be at risk. And if I let you die, Edward will kill me himself. So, what are we going to do about this newfound suicidal mindset?”
“I’m not suicidal.”
“Then why do you continue to put yourself in risky situations?”
“You wouldn’t understand,” Bella said glancing away.
“Do not make me make Charlie put you on suicide watch.”
Bella gasped. “You wouldn’t.”
“I would if it’d keep you alive!” Rosalie finally snapped.
“Why do you care? You hate me!”
“I don’t hate you, Bella,” Rosalie said finally. She sighed, crossing her arms. “I envy you.”
Bella laughed but then realized Rosalie was serious. “What do you mean?”
“You have your humanity still. Many of us were turned against our will in horrible situations. We miss it. And yet you still have it and want to throw it away. The chance to have children. The chance to grow old with someone by your side.”
Bella studied the other girl. "I'm sorry, but what I want is different. If that’s all, I’ll see you soon Rosalie,” Bella entered the house.
“So this is where you spend your weekends?”
Bella jumped in surprise. She turned to see the blonde vampire smirking at her. Rosalie had a leather jacket on over a t-shirt and jeans. She picked a book off the shelf and she paged through it. She looked comfortable… more herself than Bella had ever seen her in school. Perhaps that was due to not being constantly surrounded by teenage boys.
“What are you doing here?”
“May surprise you Miss Swan, but I do happen to enjoy reading,” Rosalie said, closing it and putting it in her basket. “And it helps to pass the time.”
“I’m sorry?” Rosalie asked, raising an eyebrow.
“Why were you the one who decided to stay behind?”
“Simple,” Rosalie reached over Bella’s shoulder to grab a book, looking down on the girl. “I’m the only one not scared of Edward.” She placed the book in her basket. “I’m glad your suicidal streak has ended. I have to get going.”
“Um Rosalie, if you wanna hang out sometime, you have my phone number.” Bella prepared herself to get viciously shot down.
Rosalie paused. “I wouldn’t… hate that. I’ll call you.” She gave a little wave and walked away, leaving Bella shocked in the middle of the bookstore.
It was awkward the first time they hung out. Rosalie didn’t really seem know how to act, and Bella had spent much more time around her siblings then her. But after asking Rosalie about her book, Bella found the two of them managed to find an easy balance. Soon the two of them were hanging out as often as Bella and Jacob did.
“Your friends seem mad that I’m picking you up,” Rosalie said as Bella slammed the BMW door closed.
“I’m sure Angela and Jessica think I’ve secretly gone back to Edward.”
“Would you?” Rosalie asked suddenly.
“Go back to Edward?”
“I- I don’t know,” Bella admitted looking away from Rosalie. A silence fell over the car.
“I should take your truck and gut it for parts,” Rosalie said. The two of them were in the Cullen garage.
“No! Not my truck,” Bella said with a laugh. “She and I have been through a lot together.”
“Hmm, at least let me fix it up for you.”
“I’ll think about it,” Bella said. She sighed. “I promised I’d go to the movies tonight but it’s just gonna be Mike, Jacob,with aat and me.”
Rosalie laughed. “Have fun.”
“You could come,” Bella said.
Rosalie rolled out from underneath the car. “And piss off your boyfriend?”
“He’s not my boyfriend,” Bella said sharply. “And it seems both he and Mike continue to forget I’m single and not interested in either of them.”
“Toss me your phone.”
Bella did so and Rosalie took it. “Now you have the flu.”
“They’ll never buy that-“
“Both said they hope you feel better and hope the whole group can go another night. See? Problem solved.”
“How will I ever thank you?” Bella said sarcastically.
“Bella, are you alright?” Rosalie asked, putting her hands on the sides of Bella’s face, examining her for her any injuries. Bella had come to her house straight after the meadow incident.
“Rosalie, I’m fine, a little shaken up, but fine,” Bella said. “Laurant just was doing a favor for Victoria. The pack stopped him.”
“Poor Irina,” Rosalie muttered. “I have to call her, but are you sure you’re alright?”
Bella just smiled. “Yes, Rosalie I’m fine.”
Rosalie pulled Bella from the water. Bell had gone cliff-jumping with Jacob.“If you killed yourself over him, I’ll never forgive you.”
Bella turned on her side, throwing up water.
Rosalie sighed in relief.
Bella lay back on her back.
“I’m pissed off,” Rosalie muttered.
“You ever do that again, I don’t know what I’ll do.”
“I won’t. I’m sorry.”
Bella was talking with Alice as Rosalie entered.
“What’s going on Alice?”
“Edward is on his way to kill himself," Bella answered.
“You’re going after him.”
It wasn’t a question. Alice watched silently.
“I have to.”
“No you don’t ,” Rosalie said. “What has he done for you Bella? You’ve nearly died several times. All Edward seems to do is hurt you! And yet you still run after him like an eager puppy!”
Bella winced. “I can’t let him die, Rose,” Bella took Rosalie’s hand. “Come with us.”
Rosalie sighed but nodded.
It seemed to go in a blur. Bella tackling Edward. Bella entering the Volturi’s home. Bella standing in front of the kings as Rosalie stood in front of her protectivelly. The promise that she would be changed over, and finally reemerging back in the sunlight.
“I’m glad to have you back,” Edward said, kissing her forehead as he sat down next her on the plane.
Bella felt a prick of pain in her heart as Rosalie moved past her to sit behind her and Edward.
“I’m going to hang out with Rose today,” Bella said, moving past Edward to the garage. The Cullens had been back two weeks and even though Bella was glad to see them, she found herself missing Rosalie who seemed to have disappeared back into the background again.
Edward grabbed her arm. “What?”
“Rosalie? Your sister? My best friend?”
“But I’m back.”
“So?” Bella asked.
“So you don’t wanna hang out with me?”
“I don’t have to spend all my time with you.”
“But… it’s Rosalie,” Edward tightened his grip.
“Edward, let me go,” Bella said.
“Rosalie emerged from the garage rubbing the oil off her hands witha rag.
“Rosalie!” Bella said happily as Edward let her go. Bella ran and threw her arms around her best friend. “I haven’t seen you at all recently.”
“I’ve been busy,” Rosalie said stiffly. Edward walked away.
“You’ve been avoiding me,” Bella said, disappointed.
“I’m sorry,” Rosalie said softly.
Bella just crossed her arms, “It’s about Edward isn’t it?”
“It’s your life.”
“It’s just hard, knowing the shell you once were.”
“I know, but now I’m here with you. I promise, no talking about Edward. And Rosalie?”
“Thanks for everything,” Bella said. “You were here for me when no one else was.”
Rosalie gave her a small smile.
“And they’re so annoying!” Bella said. Rosalie was sitting in her bedroom, paging through a recent essay Bella had asked her to look over. “I mean, they fight over me as if I’m not right there! As if I’m some object to possess and own.”
“Edward grew up in a time era where that is the case,” Rosalie mused. “Don’t know the wolf’s excuse. Perhaps he’s just an asshole.”
“It’s just, don’t we have bigger things to worry about? With Victoria and everything?”
“You know,” Rosalie looked a bit amused as she met Bella’s eyes. “Most women would love to be in a love triangle.”
“Love corner,” Bella corrected.
Rosalie raised an eyebrow.
“To say it’s a love triangle would mean Edward would have to have feelings for Jacob, or Jacob, Edward,” Bella said.
Rosalie set down the papers, eyes gleaming. “Could you imagine if Jacob had imprinted on Edward?”
“Jacob would be so devastated,” Bella said.
“Edward wouldn’t know what to do,” Rosalie did a rather good impression of Edward. “‘Rosalie, how does one reject the advances of a young man?’”
Bella let out a small laugh, letting herself take in the moment. Perhaps it should have been a red flag then that sitting on her bedroom floor with Rosalie talking gave her more joy than anything Edward had done since he got back to Italy. Perhaps Bella should have noticed the way that Rosalie smiled at her or the way warmth sat in Bella’s chest every time she met Rosalie’s eyes.
But the girl who was observant enough to figure out her classmates were vampires seemed to lose her thinking ability around Rosalie.
Perhaps that should have been the final indicator that Bella was far too in over her head.
An indicator that perhaps Bella was dating the wrong Cullen.
But Bella just continued to go over her essay, oblivious to what all the indicators pointed to.
Bella went to the Cullens straight after she punched Jacob. It seemed the right decision until Alice and Edward stared in shock while Rosalie looked like she was about to explode.
“He did what?” Rosalie made her way towards the door.
Bella stepped in front of her. “No! Rose!”
“I’m going to skin that wolf alive and then use his fur as a rug for my bedroom,” She growled. “Move out of my way.”
“Rose, look at me,” Bella said. “I’m alright, really.”
“He had no right-”
“I know, I punched him.”
“You did what?” Rosalie asked, finally focusing on Bella. She took Bella’s arm gently, examining the bruising on her knuckles. “I mean, I’m proud of you, but he’s a wolf. That had to feel like punching a rock.”
“Did it make you feel better?”
“And you don’t want me to go after the mutt?”
“No,” Bella said. “If you kill him you’ll have to leave Forks, and I’ll never get to see you again.”
Rose groaned. “I hate when you’re right. But if he steps one more paw out of line, I’m kicking his ass.”
“Be my guest,” Bella said. “Can I have some ice for the bruising?”
“I’m going to find him,” Edward growled. “He doesn’t get to touch what’s mine.”
Rosalie zoomed over to Bella, handing her the ice packet. “She said not to touch him, respect her decision.”
The graduation party was a shit show. Bella was glad to see Angela and Jessica of course. And Alice always did a wonderful job with decorating. But it was… weird to see Jacob again so soon. She was grateful he apologized, and she liked the necklace. And then she had spotted Alice get a vision out of the corner of her eye.
“Alice, what did you see?” Bella ask.
Alice’s expression turned grim. “The decision has been made.”
“What decision?” Jacob asked.
“They’re not going to Seattle,” Bella said quietly.
“They’re coming here."
Then of course came another infamous Cullen family meeting. Jacob agreeing the pack would support the vampires. Against Bella’s protests of course. Bella once again was ignored in the discussion. Rosalie put a hand on her shoulder, trying to offer reassurance. Bella leaned into the female vampire, letting Jacob and Carlisle discuss training.
There was training and Edward brought up the idea of engagement again, to which Bella brushed him off. And soon enough it was time for the battle against Victoria.
“Are you nervous?” Bella asked.
“What?” Rosalie asked, glancing over at her. She was helping Bella get set up in the mountains.
“I mean it’s your family at risk.”
“Only you would have a newborn army bearing down towards you and be concerned about my family,” Rosalie said shaking her head.
“Can I ask you something?”
“What do I smell like to you?”
Rosalie stared at her for a moment and laughed. “Sorry, that caught me off guard.,” She calmed down a bit. “Lavender and hints of pine. Like a flower field in the middle of a spruce forest. What about me?”
“Citrus,” Bella said.
“Oranges?” Rosalie smirked. “Are you saying I smell fruity Miss Swan?”
“Did you just make a gay joke?”
“Don’t be shocked, I can be funny sometimes,” Rosalie said.
“I have a feeling you can be anything if you put your mind to it, Rosalie.”
Edward entered then, telling Rosalie he and Jacob would watch over Bella. Rosalie glanced over at Bella once and then left. Bella couldn’t help but wonder just why she felt such a loss when the two men she was supposed to be in love with were standing right in front of her.
And while Bella was waiting for the battle to be over, she realized all she could worry about was Rosalie. Rosalie who was tearing apart newborns as easily as if they were dinner rolls. Her best friend, the one who managed to make her smile with just a sarcastic comment.
And that’s when Bella knew she was utterly screwed.
When she realized she was in love with her boyfriend’s sister.
“He wants me to marry him.”
“I can’t,” Bella said, glancing away. It was harder these days to meet those gorgeous golden eyes. “I feel like I’m disappointing everyone.”
“Do you want to break up with him?”
“But you don’t know how?”
Bella nodded again.
“I didn’t take you for someone who ran away from their issues,” Rosalie said, hopping through the window.
Bella looked up at the female vampire, her golden hair illuminated in the moonlight. Bella had left the Cullen household soon after Edward’s failed proposal. “Well, I knew when I wasn’t wanted anymore.” Bella sighed. “I guess Carlisle will turn me now or-“
“I’ll do it,” Rosalie said, plopping on her bed. “If it’s what you truly want. If it’s really your choice.”
“What’s with the sudden change of heart?”
“I partly couldn’t stand the idea you were giving your life up… for a man,” Rosalie wrinkled her nose. “But if it’s really what you want, if it’s really your choice. Then I’ll make sure they respect it.”
Bella leaned against the headboard. That made her feel a bit better.
There was a moment of silence before Rosalie spoke up again.
“Why couldn’t you marry him?”
“Lots of reasons, I’m sure you can think of the main one,” Bella met her eyes. Rosalie paused, studying her.
“What was I supposed to say? How was I supposed to say I was in love with his sister the whole time?”
“Why didn’t you tell me?”
Bella didn’t know how to respond. She just watched as Rosalie’s golden eyes studied her.
“What was I supposed to say?” Bella repeated.
Rosalie put her hand on Bella’s cheek. Bella leaned into her hand. It was nice, like the cool side of her pillow. “If you had even given me a hint… I thought you wanted Edward.”
“I didn’t know what I want. But I do now.”
“You shouldn’t jump into a relationship so soon.”
Bella sighed, moving away from Rosalie.
“I’m sorry,” Rosalie said. “But you know I’m right.”
“When I am ready, will you be here?”
Rosalie kissed her on the forehead. She moved to get up “Of course. Get some good sleep.”
“Will you stay? I don’t want to be alone tonight.”
Rosalie nodded, laying next to her. Bella curled into her, resting her head on Rosalie's chest as she tried to fall asleep. There were numerous problems to deal with, the pack, Edward, the Volturi. But all of it seemed to fade away the same way the world did when Bella fell asleep. They would figure it all out in the morning. For now, Bella was content to just fall asleep in Rosalie's arms.