Actions

Work Header

Blood Moon

Chapter Text

Prologue:

 

It would be years before I could look back on the events that made me who I am without bitterness.  

Even longer still before I could bring myself to forgive those to whom I had assigned the blame.

From the time that I'd learned who and what the Cullen family was, I had thought of becoming one of them. 

I had planned it all out.  How I would become a vampire and who would be the one to turn me.  I would join the Cullen family, and go with them when they were forced to move from Forks.  I would live a very, very long time with the guy that I had come to love with my whole heart.

I had centered all my little teenage dreams around a life with Edward.

Then he left me. 

They had all left me behind.

Alone.

That is when it happened.

 

Chapter 1

 

After the Cullen family left so suddenly, I found myself trying desperately to pick up the pieces and re-create a life for myself.  

A life without the Cullens in it.

From the moment that I realized that they were gone, I found myself sinking farther and farther into depression.  I couldn’t seem to shake myself out of it, and at times, I did not want to.

The few friends that I had made in Forks tried to get me out of the mood, trying to keep me included and linked to the world, but they were unable to get through to me.  Eventually, they stopped trying.  Even Jacob had stopped coming around.

Looking back on it, I can’t really blame them for it.

At the time, however, it felt as if everyone had abandoned me.

The simple, girly fairy tale that I had built up for myself, the happy ending that had shone so brightly in my head, had suddenly disintegrated around me.  It was as if the world around me had faded and blurred, taking with it all the emotions that I had previously felt and numbed them.  

I ceased to even have the energy to pay attention to what was going on around me.  I knew I needed to stop, rejoin the world of the living, but I didn’t know how.

I was just existing, taking up a space in the world, without actually living anymore.

I'm still not completely sure what special brand of insanity drove me to that place, but I'd decided to seek out the meadow where Edward and I had spent so much time together.  I couldn’t remember exactly where it was, but I knew that if I could find that one place, if it really existed, then maybe it would be proof that they really had been there.  

That I hadn’t imagined it.

Imagined him.

I grabbed a couple of bottles of water, threw them into my backpack and headed out in my old and rusted truck.  I had always ridden with Edward when we had gone to that place, and I knew what general direction to go.  I drove for an hour, possibly two, before I found the turn that would take me off the main road. 

I found a clearing that I could easily turn the truck around in, and put it in park.

I took one of the bottles of water from the pack, slung my pack onto my back and began walking farther into the woods.

Finally, I found it.  The large meadow that held so many happy memories for me.  It was no longer spring, and the flowers were gone, but this was the place.

There was the log that Edward would sit on, reciting poetry and Shakespeare from memory, entertaining me while my leg had still been in a cast after James had broken it.  

On the far side was the small stream, hardly more than a trickle really now that the spring thaws had stopped, that was so nice to walk in barefoot during the warmer days.

And the large pine tree, where we had sought shelter during one of the many rain storms that frequented the Forks area.  We had sat beneath the full branches, and spoke of our future.  

Together.

What I had thought to ultimately accomplish by going there, I don’t even remember anymore.  I had been hoping for a miracle I think.  

What I do know for sure is the result.  

That is where he found me, and it was there that he almost killed me.

Laurent.

One moment I was alone in the meadow, and the next he was there a few feet away.

I had wondered if Carlisle’s decision of leaving Laurent alive, even when he'd come to warn us about Victoria and James, had been the wise choice. If he'd turn on his companions that easily, he could do so again to us. 

Last I had heard of him, he'd been living the "vegetarian" lifestyle with the Alaskan vampires.  With him suddenly so close, I could tell that was a lie.

The red eyes of a human blood drinking vampire gazed at me from the familiar face.

How wrong I had been to assume that I didn't have anything to fear from him anymore.

He told me of his plan to track me for Victoria, and her plans for me when I had been located. The whole time circling me as if he were a tiger, and I were his prey.

In a way, I knew that was the case, but was suddenly desperate to stop him.

I tried to bluff my way into an escape, pretending that the Cullens were still in the area and watching over me, but I think I'd known that it wasn't going to work.

I had always been a terrible liar.  My face would give me away every time.

He rushed at me then, in that “faster than humans can see” speed. The pain as his teeth pierced the skin of my neck was blinding. I could feel the venom from his saliva start to course through my veins instantly.  I was growing weak, and felt a peculiar floating feeling that let me know that he was draining me of blood.  I wasn’t going to last long, and did not possess the sheer amount of strength that would be needed to break free.

There was a loud chorus of deep growling, and Laurent lifted his head from my body.

Then, as sudden as he'd come, he was gone.  In a haze, I felt my body fall to the ground even as my sight faded to black.

I vaguely remember being carried in strong arms, hearing the rush of the wind as the landscape whipped by me. 

Mostly, I remember feeling as if I were on fire. Nothing could ease the burning hell that I had found myself in, however.  It was as if someone had started a bonfire in, on and around me.  Every nerve was on fire, every joint screaming in pain.  If I'd seen smoke rising from my limbs, I wouldn't have been surprised in the least.

I had burned with the vampire venom for three days. I thought I'd died and ended up in my own personal hell, similar to the pictures I'd seen in the books when my mom had gone through her religious phase.

Three hellish days later, the burning receded and the pounding of my heart was the only sound I could hear.  The deep sound echoed in my head, as if I were standing next to a giant bass drum.  

The sound slowed until there was only silence.  Blessed silence.

Then I became aware of a loud humming.

Afraid to move, I listened to that hum for a while, all the while waiting for the burning to return. 

There was the muffled clang of metal on metal and a familiar voice cursing.  Cautiously, I rose to my feet and took stock of my surroundings. I was in a small room that looked very masculine. The bed, held above the floor with an old wooden bedframe, took up most of the room.  The left side of the bed was pushed up flush against the wall, and a long dresser took up space along the other side, underneath a small, single window.  

The room stunk to high heaven, but there was something about it that was still somewhat familiar.  I looked around the room, trying to get an idea of where I was.

I caught sight of a familiar wooden carved figure in the corner.  The figure of a wolf.

I had seen it before, when those familiar hands of my friend had been working on it.

"Jacob," I breathed.  I was in Jacob’s house.

I made my way to the small window that allowed the bright sunlight into the room. I could see Jacob in the distance, working on his beloved car.  Once more, there was a metal on metal clang, and a frustrated voice cursing.

He was too far away for me to have heard it clearly, yet I had.

I held perfectly still and concentrated. Yes, I could hear him muttering to himself. The hum that I'd heard was the car's engine as he worked on it.

Curiosity had me holding my hand up to the rays of sunlight. My skin glittered as if made of granite.

Slowly, I took stock of what I suddenly knew was true.

Laurent had bitten me and the venom from his saliva had given me the transformation that I'd longed for. I wasn't a fragile human, I was something more. 

Even though I had wanted it, wished for it, I wasn't prepared to become a vampire.  Not now.

I hadn't come up with a plan. I had no idea of what I'd tell Charlie or Renee. I had no one to help me adjust to this life. I had no one to help me learn to hunt for food, how to handle my new strength and abilities.

The thirst hit me then, and I knew I had to get away. Far away. Before I hurt Jacob, his father or anyone else who would have the misfortune of getting in my way.

I made my way through the unfamiliar house, and threw myself out the front door. 

Still a long distance away, I saw Jacob's head pop up, and heard him curse once more as his head hit the raised hood of his car.  Gingerly, he rubbed at his head, coming away with a smear of blood on his hand.

I saw it, the red stain that attracted me even as I feared it.

Not wanting to stop and take the chance that I would attack Jacob, I ran toward the woods in the distance. I reached the edge of the wooded area faster than I had even thought possible, and continued to run. 

There was a freedom in the running, and the feeling was so exhilarating that I'd almost forgotten what I was running for.  The woods blurred by, yet I was able to navigate through them easily.  The sound of the wind in my ears was so loud that I almost missed the call of the mountain lion I startled as I ran past.

Realizing that I was probably missing other animals in the area, I brought myself to a halt and listened carefully.  

In the distance, I heard the brush rustle and I moved silently toward it.  In a small clearing I found an adult doe foraging for food.  With my sensitive hearing, I could hear the rapid heartbeat in her deep chest.  The rush of the blood in her veins sang, calling to me.

I admit that I was not entirely clear on the technique, or the most graceful.  The deer tried to fight me, but with my newborn vampire strength, it was a wasted effort. I went through three more deer before I reached a state that I felt I could stop and not be a threat to anyone. I stopped and sat back on a fallen log. Now that I actually could think, I needed to.

I had to try to think of what was next.  I could not just hang out in the woods for God only knew how long, until my eyes turned gold and I could figure out what in the hell I was doing.

A large wolf cautiously approached from the woods. 

I held myself perfectly still. The thirst was still causing me a lot of discomfort, making me feel as if I were thirsty but I didn't want to kill any more innocent animals. Not if I could help it.

The wolf slowly retreated out of sight, and a short time later, Jacob came running into the area that I'd found for myself.

"Jake?" I asked, my voice a little rough with the insatiable thirst.

"Bella, Jesus. What were you thinking, running off like that?" He said.

"Jake...what are you doing here? You shouldn't be here." I said, still afraid that a part of me wanted nothing more to get more blood somewhere.  I held my breath so that I would not be able to smell Jacob’s blood.

He slowly held his hands out. "I only want to help Bella."

"You can't possibly know what you're offering," I cried. He needed to leave, why didn't he understand that? Couldn't he see that I was different?

"I might know a little more than you give me credit for," he said, a little bitterness tingeing his voice. "Charlie thinks you need some time away, after Edward ,” He sneered the name, “broke your heart, and that you're staying with us out here on the rez. I couldn't bring myself to tell him that you'd died or anything, so you'll still have to deal with that, but I'll try to help you with anything else."

"You can't help me," I said. "The only people who could are gone, and I don't know where to find them."

"I can help you." He was pleading with me now, "Please, Bells, let me help."

"What do you think I am?" I asked, suspiciously.

With a long sigh, Jacob looked at my face closely. "You're one of what my people call the Cold Ones. A Vampire."

I stared at him. "How...How do you know about that?"

Jacob ran a frustrated hand through his hair. "Just...give me a minute so I can think of how to explain."

Over the next hour, he went on to tell me the legend of the wolves.  How closely related his tribe was with the wolf and how he was one of them. 

Literally.  He was a wolf.

They were "made" to hunt and destroy vampires. It was then that I found out that Laurent was dead.  The wolf pack had killed him after seeing him attack me.

He was, however, prepared to break from the pack in order to take care of me. He wasn't going to allow the pack to harm me, especially when it wasn't my choice. As long as I continue to be no danger to the humans in and around their reservation or Forks, they'd have no reason to come for me.

To say I was shocked would be the understatement of the century.  Just when you think you know someone, and POOF.  Not only do you not know them as well as you thought you did, they have one rather large secret that they were holding back from you.  

Oh, and by the way, your best friend is a werewolf.

We sat like that, side by side and talking until the sun sank behind the mountains. Night came, darkness fell, and still we sat together. Between the both of us we came to realize that there was no way for me to survive on my own, at least not at first. At some point in the future, I would have no choice, but for now it was not a smart option to just take off and try living on my own.

The next few weeks were spent with Jacob at his house.  In wolf form, he began teaching me how to hunt without making so much of a mess. 

Somehow, in the process of becoming a vampire, I had somehow grown into less of a klutz.  I was able to move silently with little effort.  Even the leaves beneath my feet didn’t make noise beneath my feet as we walked through the woods.  It was as if I were floating above the ground, even though I could feel it as I walked.

I was finally getting the hang of it, which was a good thing, considering I was thirsty all the time.

After two weeks of holding Charlie at bay, I finally had to figure out a way to go home. Being that I had spent so much time between visiting Jacob on the reservation and in my room, it was easy to continue that pattern and stay out from under Charlie's watchful gaze. I spent most of the money that I had left in my bank account on brown contacts to hide the bright red eyes that all newborns have. Luckily my eyes were slowly fading to gold, but I was still using the contacts, just in case it was too much of a change too fast.

The last thing I wanted at that point was attention.

Finally, I managed to make my way through the remainder of high school, and made plans to go to a college that was far enough away from both Charlie and Renee that I'd be able to continue keeping contact with them for a while without them noticing the changes (or lack of them).

I would be going to a small college in Maine, and go into their sciences program.  Geologically, it was the farthest I could get from either parent without leaving the country.  

When Edward was there, we had spoken of where we would go after high school and I was turned.  We had planned to go to Alaska and meet up with the Denali clan there while I made the transition.

I knew that there were covens in other countries, and I did not want to chance running into any of them, either.  I had gotten lucky with meeting the Cullens first, but I did not want to take the chance that I would run across one of the not so friendly ones.

Especially with a Werewolf in tow.

So, Maine it was.  I would be attending Maine State College in Presque Isle, Maine.

I tried to convince Jacob to stay behind.  He still had a life there.  A family.  Even being a werewolf, he still had a chance at a future.

Me, not so much.  My life stopped that day in the meadow.  There would be no more family, very limited friends.  Any chance I had at the whole “marriage, 3.5 kids and a dog” life died in that field when Laurent bit me.

Despite the arguments, the outright screaming matches that happened on occasion, and the long nights of discussion, he followed me anyway. 

Secretly, I was grateful for his company even if I did feel guilty. I knew he had feelings for me that went beyond friendship, but I just couldn't return them. Especially not now.

Before we left to move across the country, we sat down and actually talked the situation through.  I didn’t want any misunderstandings, hurt feelings or to lose my only friend.  By the end of the night, he admitted that he knew that I thought of him only as a friend, and even if he hoped for more, he settled for the friendship.

I was so happy to have someone familiar near me.  Someone I wouldn’t have to lie to.  Someone who knew who and what I was and had no judgement for what I needed to do in order to survive.

Even if he did smell rather strongly of musty, wet dog.

Jacob took a well paying job in a car repair garage in order to pay the bills.  It’s not that we really needed to live indoors, but we needed a physical address for all kinds of things; Mail, school registration, bank accounts. 

We rented a small farmhouse on the edge of a wooded area of Aroostook State Park, near Spragueville and mostly kept to ourselves.  

Most people in town, at the shop or at the school were used to seeing us together.  I am sure that most thought we were “living in sin” in a lover kind of capacity, though no one was bold enough to say so.

In all honesty, we’d never even kissed.  There were times, before my attack, that I had wondered about a relationship between Jacob and I.  He was good looking and mature.  Before Edward and I became an item, and even a little bit after, there had been some part of me that had felt pulled to him.

After becoming a vampire, that pull disappeared, leaving only a friendship behind.  

Thankfully, it seemed to be that way for him as well.

We were able to keep up the illusion of normalcy for almost five years. I went to the small college, mostly night classes to avoid the sunlight, and graduated with a degree in science. It meant the world to me to see both Renee and Charlie together, and so proud of me at my graduation. 

At least I got to give the both of them that.  They were so proud, standing together and getting along for the first time in a while.  Renee took a lot of pictures, and Charlie was doing the proud daddy thing, and boasting to all who would listen that I was his “little girl”.

Within a month of graduation, I walked away from my life.  I drove my car off of a bridge in the middle of the Aroostook River at midnight, and attempted to simply disappear.  I read about the tragic story of Isabella Swan, recent graduate, who was presumed dead after her car had crashed through a guardrail.  

The body had never been found, and after a while I stopped seeing my name appear anywhere.

I retreated as far North as I could.  Edward had told me of the places in Alaska that the Cullens frequented.  In an effort to avoid them, if they had gone to Alaska, I stuck to Eastern Canada.

We found a small place to rent in Saguenay, Quebec, just outside of the Monts-Valin National Park.  

Jacob again found work with a garage, honing his skills and building his own custom car.  He gave me space for a few months, giving me time to grieve for my former life.  He was supportive in a way that I hadn’t even thought about.

Jacob was able to keep in contact with both Renee and Charlie, as a friend of their “dead” daughter.  At first, it hurt to hear about them, knowing that I couldn’t see them.  As time went on, it got easier, but the urge to see them, to let them know that I was still “alive”, was still with me.

Two years after my funeral, Renee died in a car accident while moving from Florida to Colorado when her husband, Phil, was picked up by the Colorado Rockies Baseball Team.  I found out about it only an hour after the accident, and I mourned her from a distance. I found out that Charlie was going to her service, and was afraid that I'd be recognized, so I wasn’t able to go to her memorial.

The wolf pack back in Washington kept us up to date on Charlie's health and activities.  Through them I was able to feel connected (however distant) to him. He had started slowing down after I “died”, even though he really wasn’t that old.  According to the pack, he spent every free moment he had contacting law enforcement agencies and sending out updated flyers with my face on them.  

It had been eighteen years, and yet he never stopped trying to find me.  I guess it was the lack of body that wouldn’t allow him to let go, but by then, there was little I could do about it.  I could have just walked outside, held my breath and let myself be found, but I would be the best preserved corpse in history.  

Explaining that would have been borderline impossible.

I was told when Charlie got promoted to captain.  When he started getting grey hair. When he got sick, and finally, when he died. 

Again, I mourned from a distance, because so many people who had known me and Charlie were still in Forks and alive.

I admit that I did make it back to forks shortly after, though.  I sat in the graveyard, listening to the silence around me, and said my goodbye.  I made a quick detour past the house, grabbing the photo albums and a few little mementos to remember him.  My last stop before leaving was Charlie’s bedroom.  I grabbed his metal police badge.

Only a year later, Jacob's father died.  I hope I was some comfort to Jacob, as he had been to me. 

By then, it had been 19 years since we had left Forks.  He ended up posing as his own cousin and went to the funeral.  Luckily, the service was on the reservation, and all of the tribe rallied around him to cover his lie.

I tried not to be jealous, but some feelings have no reasoning with them.  They just are what they are, and no amount of arguing against them make a bit of difference.

After that, I began to understand just what the Cullens meant when they spoke of the past as if it were yesterday.  Time began to pass with little to no meaning.

Before I really knew it, a good forty years had passed by. 

I had not aged a day, but that was to be expected.  The big surprise was that Jacob hadn’t either.  

It took us both a while to realize that as long as he was in close proximity to a vampire, that he wouldn't age. He had told me about the legends of his tribe, but I guess neither one of us knew if the magic extended beyond the original tribal lands.

Much to our surprise, it did.

When I realized that as long as he was with me he wouldn’t age, I begged him to go home.  To go back to his ancestral lands, take his position as a tribal leader, and to try to find someone and start the family that I knew he wanted.

A few years later, he finally went. 

Over the next few years, I kept in touch with Jacob and the few remaining  wolf pack.  

I spoke with him often, having gotten used to him being with me all the time.  I worried when two days passed and I didn’t hear from him, but when he finally did call, it was with the news that he had imprinted.  Her name was Catherine, and she was from a neighboring tribe.  They had met when he had attended a multi-tribal meeting, and was caught by surprise.  He had hung around for a few days, until he could convince her to go out with him.

She was eighteen at the time, and despite his actual age, Jacob still looked in his early twenties.  I decided that it was time for me to back off and let him get on with his life.  To let him be happy.

Be “normal” after all of the years of weirdness that he had spent with me.

Five years after Jacob imprinted, I got a thick envelope in the mail that held photos from Jacob’s wedding. Two years after that, his letters started including pictures of his children.

I was happy for him, I really was, but I kept feeling like I'd been left behind again.

Jealousy is a real bitch sometimes.

I moved around here and there, passing myself off as either an emancipated minor, or a college freshman, depending on how long I thought to stay in an area. I got rather good at creating new identifications for myself, using names and documents for people who were around my age who had passed away.

I worked a lot of jobs, and was amazed at how much money you could save by not needing to eat, not needing to sleep and not necessarily needing to pay for housing.  Give me an all night laundromat for clean clothes and a wooded area to explore, and I was set.  I would invest in a post office box for contact purposes, but that was the extent of it.

Finally, Jacob wrote to me that it was time to come back to Forks.  Everyone who could have possibly recognized me was either dead or a tribe member who would keep her secret.  

It took me a while to decide, but finally I agreed with him.

It was time to go home.