Fic: I Lost Myself to the Moonlight Glow 1/?
Title: I Lost Myself to the Moonlight Glow
Pairing: Edward/Jacob (main), Edward/Bella (beginning), some Bella/Jacob & all other canon pairings
Warnings: this will be slash people so if that does not float your boat don't read this.
Summary: Werewolves are vicious and insane. They care about nothing but the kill and the Moon. They are also lethal to vampires.
Disclaimer: I own nothing, nada, neinte. It all belongs to Stephanie Meyer and whoever publishes the books where you are.
Author's Notes: I am trying to do something different here so concrit is gratefully accepted. I will be taking some liberties with the Quileute traditions. I do not own them and I do respect that they are a people with their own history but this is a work of fiction. Also, I am not a huge Bella fan but I am endeavoring not to bash her. I predict it will be a struggle. Additionally (because saying 'Also' again seems annoying), this is a WIP so there may be gaps between postings. I know what I am going to write, its just getting the time to write them.
I can't think of anything else right now but will add it when I do.
She is everything.
It is a very simple concept. She is everything.
There is nothing beyond her pale face, her radiant presence. The dark of the forest holds no wonder, the whispering of the wind no secrets, the call of nature no lure; it was just him and her. Even the slick soft feel of fresh meat between his teeth and the metallic tang of blood fail to stir the same hunger she does in him. Without her... without her everything is dark and cold and his mind shies away from even contemplating such a place; such a horrible, twisted place where nothing could possibly wish to live. She is his world, his everything. He cannot explain it better than that. He knows no more than that. She is his heart beat, his breath, his blood. Every atom of his body is hers. Every thought in his head is tuned to her. Every accomplishment attributed to her. She is that spark deep down inside that makes him more than just soft flesh and brittle bone.
She is his soul.
She sings to him, a lullaby for his ears alone, assuring him of his importance in her life; crooning her love to him. Every night he hears her song, infinitely sweet and so alluring. A siren call meant just for him, and he would gladly dash himself on the sharpest of rocks if she were just to bestow upon him the faintest chord. Sometimes, like tonight, it's loud, striving towards its crescendo, but other nights, then it is as soft as a baby's breath and he has to strain to hear it. And strain he does; escaping to the forests or the beaches so that there is nothing between them. No man-made sounds, no honking horns or buzzing electric lights; they spoil it. They pollute her sonata, drowning out the sweet notes. Tonight she's ringing in his ears, a maddeningly beautiful sound like the singing of cut glass, drumming out any thought, pulsing through him, and he feels her in every cell. He is hers, just as she is his. They covet each other. They need each other. Their very existence is based upon the other. Two halves of one whole. They complete each other. She needs his devotion, his wonder, his slavish adoration and he needs her. Just her.
He feels her now, even though she is miles away, she flows through his blood, thundering like a heartbeat. Her soft fingers stroke his skin, spurring him to run further and faster, chasing her elusive scent. Following her siren song. So he plunges deeper into the dark forest. Night-time creatures snuffle in the undergrowth, rustling leaves and deliberately keeping out of his way. Bats pinwheel through the sky, their acrobatics a show for someone else, he has neither the time nor the inclination to watch. His eyes are needed elsewhere. He can taste the pine sap in the air and somewhere overhead an owl screeches out to its mate. He knows how it feels: sending its call out into the dark, desperately hoping his Lady will sing back. He plants his feet in the soft wet earth, throws back his head and lets out his own mournful cry.
The sound reverberates around the thick forest, bouncing from tree to tree and leaving a wake of utter silence in its path. Not even the crickets strum. The wind moves through the trees, the smell of fresh rain teases him, trying to soothe his restless spirit with its sweetness but the rain is nothing compared to the Moon. He watches, obsessively, as she makes her way through the night sky.
A twig snaps, the crack echoing through the dark. His head whips round, his silver eyes trained on the path, and he freezes, waiting for the unwary. She won't mind if he turns from her for a moment, not if he brings her the sweetest offering; a sacrifice worthy of her ethereal majesty.
The boy is beautiful, even to his moonstruck eyes and his stomach rolls, hunger welling up like a tidal wave. The boy is perfect. He looks fresh, young, soft muscle and deliciously pliable flesh. His teeth will cut through that skin so easily. One bite. That is all he needs. One crushing ripping bite and the boy will be his. His moonlight offering. Crouching low, he waits, covered by the thick bushes and ferns, watching. Still.
The boy trips through the forest as if it is daylight and the sun is shining bright and there are no monsters lurking in the dark. His movements are easy, graceful as a gazelle and as surefooted as a mountain goat. He's travelled these paths before, he knows them – it is obvious. His feet carry him forward and over the forest debris and he flits, like Will-o'-the-Wisp, through a patch of moonlight.
It is too much. The boy's skin glows, twinkles like a thousand-faceted diamond, as the light caresses it, stroking it in a way it never strokes him. She has never blessed him in such a way. The anger blooms bright, blinding him to anything but sheer irrepressible rage. He has no right. No one should glow in the moonlight. No one should steal the light that is meant for him alone. The light is his. He worships her, follows her – no matter where she goes – he knows her name, every one of them, in every language spoken by man and beast. And now there is this boy, this insignificant little child, trying to steal her radiance from him.
He is nothing without her. He is less than nothing. Without her he is hollow waste of flesh and blood. Without her there is no soul, no spirit, no sweet life.
He trembles, his muscles clenching and relaxing as his rage rocks through him. Blood pounds in his temple, the pressure so great he can barely see. He grits his teeth, hard enough to snap steel and his jaw aches with the effort. He wants to rip, tear, eviscerate this interloper. He wants to obliterate that sparkling flesh, remove it millimetre by millimetre so that nothing is left but rich red ribbons of masticated flesh and the flash of white, crushed bone. He wants to erase the boy from the world, his fur ripples with the want. It's in his belly, like swallowed fire, this unshakeable need to destroy. To hurt, to make the boy watch as he rips his stomach out and leaves him as empty as he feels right now. The boy has stolen his light – so he will steal his. Snuff out the little light of his inconsequential life and retire to lick his wounds.
Maybe he will end it. Destroy the boy and then himself. She has forsaken him. What does he have if not her? If he has lost that moonlight glow what is his existence worth? He can see nothing but black emptiness stretching out its grasping fingers and ensnaring him in a madness he will never escape. A loneliness that will inevitably damn him.
The boy is so close, and he slinks forward, his belly scraping the soft damp earth. He makes not a sound and even though the night is as silent as a tomb, the boy has no idea he is there. No idea that he is moving towards his end.
She coos to him and the rage subsides. She wants the boy. She wants the boy to glow for her, to twinkle like her very own star and he will give her what she wants. He's her servant, her slave, devoted only to her. If she wished it of him he would die, in an instant. End his miserable existence however she wished. But all she wishes for is the boy; this moonlit child running towards him and it will be so easy.
He bursts from the bushes, his fur quicksilver in the moonlight and it doesn't matter how fast the boy is, he is infinitely faster. The slight body buckles underneath his crushing weight, his claws raking at the soft material of the boy's shirt. The rending of fabric though isn't enough, he needs something harsher and deeper, and though the boy struggles he keeps him pinned with sharp claws and sheer force and unforgiving teeth tearing into the pale neck.
He does not taste blood. His razor-teeth do not slide through, as they should, as nature intended. The boy is hard, like marble and his canines ring with the effort of the bite. It's a bite that would crush a man's head like a sun ripened peach, but the skin hardly breaks, only the tips of his fangs manage to penetrate and the taste that stains his tongue is acid and not sweet metal. It's wrong, so unbelievably wrong, and his stomach twists violently, wrenching him back, letting the boy fall limply from his grasp. He hacks, spits – as well as he is able – trying to get the sour burning taste out of his mouth. He drags his tongue along the dirt, and the boy screams.
The sound rings in his ears and he whines, shaking his head in a frantic effort to dispel the noise. He is so loud. Glancing at the boy he can see that his golden eyes are wide open, his hands are clutching at his neck and his body is twitching, like he is a marionette with his strings being pulled in every direction. The boy is still screaming and he snarls. He stalks closer, determined to shut the boy up, stop that horrible noise but the nearer he gets the more it hurts and he backs away, whining and whimpering and tossing his head from side to side.
He hears voices, dim over the screaming, and he backs further into the bushes, his fur sliding seamlessly into the shadows. For that is all he is, moonlight and shadow made flesh. His silver eyes watch as two others arrive, almost as beautiful – although in vastly different ways – as his boy and they too shimmer in the light. He snarls, low and furious and the bigger of the two obviously hears him, stiffening slightly like a deer scenting a cougar, and turns to look. He remains undetected, hidden by the night, but the large one stares for endless seconds, searching him out until the screaming boy and the blond tugging on his sleeve draws his attention away. Stooping slightly, the larger one gathers up the still screaming, writhing boy, his hands infinitely careful, and the other one hovers nervously, like a mother supervising her chicks. He narrows his eyes as his hunger ebbs even further and his limbs grow heavy. One of them is doing something. Even his moonlight boy is relaxing. But before he can figure it further, they are running, disappearing back the way they came.
Taking the calm, and her prize, with them.
He hangs his head, shame welling up inside of him. He failed her. The boy would have been a beautiful present to lie on her altar as a sign of his devotion. She rebukes him softly; acknowledging that she would have liked the boy. That he would have been a beautiful jewel in her collection. He cannot help but feel guilty; it bites at him like a raw wind. She asks so little of him and he needs to show her, has to show her, just how much he loves her. She wants the boy, the boy who glows in a way he never can. A boy that will replace him in her affections, after all he reflects her. He shines for her. And that does not matter, not really. She wants the boy and he loves her. She will have the boy because he loves her. And because he loves her he will bring her nothing less than her greatest desire.
A wolf howls in the dark.
"'lo?" Jacob Black's voice is husky with sleep and he scrubs the back of his hand across his eyes.
His bedside clock, a wind-up thing that had been in his room for as long as he could remember, had its hands at three and two and though it was five-past-three and not quarter-past-two it was still far too early to be answering the phone. But, it is the unspoken rule of unexpected middle of the night call: when the phone rings it has to be answered. Because someone has probably died. Or been horribly maimed. Or, at the very least, has gotten terribly drunk and been hauled in by an annoyed Chief Swan and he wants Jacob to come and pick them up when all Jacob wants to do his burrow his way back under his bedding and go back to sleep.
"Jake?" Bella's voice is shaking and suddenly sleep is the last thing from Jacob's mind.
"Bella? What's wrong? Is it Charlie?" The questions are fast and perhaps too harsh for someone who is obviously distressed but he cannot help it. No matter how hard he tries to stop he still loves her and hearing her so torn up crushes him and jars all of his protective instincts.
Bella swallows down a sob which Jacob hears quite clearly. "Jake," she moans, like a wounded animal.
"Bells," he says trying to sound calm and controlled, hoping that it will rub off on her. "Tell me what's wrong."
"It's Edward," she whispers, her voice tight with tears. He knows that she's probably tucked into the rocking chair in the corner of the room with a blanket wrapped around her. Her face will be bone-white and her eyes hollow and red-rimmed with tears. "He's been hurt."
"Fuck," he breathes and hears her tense on the phone. She's probably thinking he's happy or that he thinks she blames him – he isn't thinking that at all. Far from it. He's trying to work out what in the hell could take down a vampire, and one that reads minds at that.
"Alice rang – she said, she said, she-"
"Breath, Bella, just breathe."
He hears her take a huge gulp of air in, coughing as it goes down wrong, and he lets her get control of herself. "Alice said that Jasper and Emmett found him," she pauses and Jacob swears he hears her knuckles crack. "I could hear him screaming Jake, he sounded so... so..."
Jacob doesn't really know what to say. It's not like he can say he's sorry, although he is – for Bella at least – because it would come off as insincere. She knows, better than most, that there is no love lost between him and Cullen. Really he should be doing cartwheels and whooping, but he can't. The pain in her voice cuts him to the quick and, no matter how he wishes it wasn't so, he's her best friend. Still, he isn't sure why she is calling him.
He rubs the back of his neck, feeling suddenly awkward and exposed. He hopes that she will continue talking because, really, how does he ask her what the hell she wants from him without sounding like a callous bastard?
"I have to go, Jake," she says, her voice urgent.
"Oh, ok then." He wasn't really expecting that sudden swerve in conversation. "I'll talk to you tomorrow? Or whenever?"
"No Jake, I need to go to the house."
Jacob rubs his face again. It is really too early for this semi-hysterical conversation. "Ok."
"How long will you be?"
It suddenly occurs to him that they are having different conversations. "Woah. Wait – what?"
"I'm going to get dressed – how long will you be? You will be quick won't you?"
For a moment he wonders whether she needs some sort of help, like a doctor or something, because she thinks he's going to be the one to take her to Edward. It is really very twisted. "Isn't Alice coming to get you?" he asks, because he can't imagine them leaving Bella out of this.
He hears the rustle of clothing and the crack of jeans being shaken out. "She can't. Carlisle doesn't want any of them to leave the house." Her voice sounds a little farther away than it did before; she's obviously put it down to dress and Jacob shifts nervously. She's getting dressed whilst on the phone to him. Cullen would have a fit – and that makes him smile. It's a naughty little smile but Bella is still talking and he has to listen to what she is saying. "And Alice says that it isn't safe for me to come alone and if you take me, well, then I won't be alone will I?"
Jacob nods along with what she says, because she is Bella and he always agrees with her. The floorboard creaks behind him and he turns to see his dad. Billy has pulled himself out of bed and his chair is halfway into the hall. He has a curious look on his face. Covering the receiver with one hand he mouths "Bella" and his father raises an eyebrow. Its sheer mastery the way his dad can say an entire sentence with just one eyebrow.
He is not pleased.
"How long will you be?" Bella begs and Jacob hates her at that moment. She doesn't seem to care at the position she's putting him in. It hurts him, physically hurts him – like a punch in the gut – to hear just how much she loves Edward. Just how worried she is about him. And he has no doubts that if things were the other way round she would not be begging Edward to take her to him. She'd accept whatever excuse he gave her not to go.
He sighs, and feels sick to his stomach about what he is about to say. "I can't Bella. I can't go to their house."
Falling back on the treaty is perhaps a little pathetic, he knows that, but it's the only recourse he's left with. And one of them has to think clearly. The Cullens, no matter how peaceful they are, will not appreciate him turning up at a time like this. Bella does not seem to understand that though, "Jake! Please! I have to get to Edward – its Edward and he's hurt and he needs me! Jacob, please."
Jacob is pretty sure that Charlie is not home, or at least if he is, he is no longer asleep. Even his father heard that. She's whispering a litany of "its Edward, I have to go" over and over, as if emphasising the fact that it's Edward is going to make any difference to him at all. If anything it makes him want to dig his heels in out of sheer spite. But he's better than that. He hates that he is. Sometimes he wishes that he could be totally selfish, it would make life so much easier. But he can't, it's the curse of being a pack animal. He sighs and she hears it and he really wonders if his affections for her have blinded him to her selfish side. Because really, all she cares about right now is her getting to Edward. She doesn't care that the Cullens might not want her there or about asking Jacob to take her.
A flash of flesh catches his attention and he turns. His dad has obviously been attempting to flag his attention for sometime – if the exasperated expression on his face is any indication – and he motions for Jacob to hang up the phone. He frowns. He does not want to abandon Bella when she so obviously needs him but, at the same time, he has never gone out of his way to disobey his father. Never. Somehow the adolescent need to rebel seems to have bypassed him – in much the same way as it has bypassed the various pack-members. Perhaps it is instinctual, and dedication and service to the tribe is ingrained in them long before they shift. Or maybe it's simply that Billy has raised him and Billy has, for the best part of his life, been the only family around. He loves his sisters, but he loves his dad more.
"Bella, give me a minute yeah? I'll call you back."
"No, Jake, no. Don't hang up. Please don't hang up. I need you to help me." She is begging now, and that thorn in his heart that has Bella's name etched into it twists just that bit more.
"Ok, ok," he soothes, unable to do anything more. "I'm not hanging up, I swear I'm not, I just need to talk to my dad."
"And then you'll come get me?" There's something slightly mad and childlike in that question, and Jacob is profoundly grateful that he has decided not to hang up.
"I'll be right back."
Putting the phone down on the sideboard, making sure that he's gentle so as not to bang against the wood, he moves across to his father.
Despite the early hour, Billy's eyes are sharp and his hair is relatively neat. Jacob knows it's inevitable that the right hand side of his hair is plastered to his head, just like it is every morning, but somehow his dad has managed to escape the indignity. He's often wondered whether it is some Elder voodoo that keeps his father so unruffled, because nothing has ever surprised Billy. Not even his son turning into a massive wolf and attempting to eat him out of house and home. It is the same now. It is three in the morning and for all Billy reacts it might as well be three in the afternoon. His hands rest on his blue-striped pyjama bottoms, just like the ones you see in films, real pyjama bottoms and not the cut off sweat-pants Jacob shucks on before crawling into bed, and he is tapping out a random beat with his right index finger.
"What is going on Jake?"
Jacob drags both hands over his face and through his hair. He's tired. Physically, mentally, emotionally. He feels as though he is being pulled in all directions and none of them benefit him in anyway. "Cullen – Edward – has been hurt."
Billy does not look impressed, not that Jacob expected him to. "How?"
"Dunno. Bella's kinda losing it."
Billy grins wryly. "So I heard."
Jacob huffs. "She wants me to take her over there."
Even saying it out loud hurts and he wraps his arms round his middle, sometimes he feels like he needs to hold it all in. All he wants to do is scream. Or run. Run far and fast and never stop running until the hurt has burned away and the ash is free-floating in the wind. He especially wants to run from Bella and the web she has him in. He does not understand how she can ignore his feelings so easily. He gets it, she does not want him. Not the way he wants her. Not the way she wants Edward. He gets it, really he does. There are times when he thinks of nothing else. Nevertheless, he does not think he's done anything that warrants the constant reminders.
"Perhaps you should." Billy looks pensive.
Jacob looks incredulous. "What?" Somehow his father suggesting this hurts even more than Bella. Of all the people in the world, he thought that, at the very least, Billy would support him on this.
Reaching out and snagging his son's hand, Billy tugs until Jacob squats down in front of his chair. He's never been an overly affectionate man, but at the same time he's never been afraid of touch. He smoothes a hand over Jacob's bed-head hair, just like he used to when Jacob was a child, and Jacob relaxes just a little. "Think about it Jake. We need to know what took down the Cullen boy."
Billy sighs. "So, it could be a threat. One that could hurt us." He stares at his son, and for a moment he looks old and weary. "Jake, I know it's hard, but the tribe comes first. If something attacked a vampire–"
"It could come after us," Jacob interrupts his father, not needing to hear the spiel about how their ancient sacred calling makes them little more than guard-dogs. There was a moment, a brief shining moment, shortly after he'd shifted for the first time – and after the momentary hysteria of realising that he had suddenly morphed into a massive wolf – where he'd been filled with sheer joy. That type that only comes from realising that something about you is special. It had welled in the pit of his stomach, like hot cocoa complete with marshmallows and whipped cream, and it had been like Christmas Eve, when you are five and tucked in bed and absolutely anything is possible. It had been wonderful. It was as though he'd finally found who he was meant to be and he'd liked it. He was more than just Jacob Black, the Res kid with the crippled dad and crappy Rabbit. He was Jacob Black. Wolf. All those insignificant teenage insecurities had fallen from him as though he'd shed his old skin and taken on a new one. He'd finally felt free, like he had a place and a purpose and he was more than just an awkward sixteen year old with a crush on his best friend. And then Sam explained what their purpose was.
The weight of the responsibility had forced the air from his lungs and suddenly his shiny new gift hadn't seemed all that cool anymore.
Two years later the weight is still there, still as heavy and he imagines that it will be there until the day he dies.
He shakes his head wearily. He is so tired of all of this. He'd like to be a normal kid again. He should be looking at colleges now, not trying to work out what – if anything – had attacked a vampire. There are times when his life is surreal. He claps his dad on the knees and rises from his crouch, his knee-caps popping as he stands, and heads back to the phone. He tries not too but his shoulders slump in defeat as he picks up the receiver. His hand rubs at the back of his neck, a nervous gesture he's never quite overcome, "Bells? You there?"
"Jake?" She's been crying since he put the phone down, her voice is raspy and wet and she sounds a little lost.
"I'll be there in about twenty minutes."
"Ok. Ok. Great. I'll meet you outside."
Jacob agrees, before processing just what she has said. "No, Bells. Stay inside, ok? If the Cullens don't want you alone then you stay inside 'til I get there. Right?"
"Ok – just hurry. Please Jake. Hurry."
The dial tone is so very final and he carefully places the receiver back on its cradle. For a moment he just stands, his hand resting on the phone, his head tilting back towards the ceiling. There's a crack in it. He'll have to sort that soon, he really can't afford to have the house fall down around them.
His steps are leaden as he moves towards his room. He needs to dress – jeans and a t-shirt at least – if he's taking the bike. It's faster than the Rabbit but doesn't suit wearing shorts. It also means he'll need his boots or sneakers. Either work. It's a pain really, he's gotten used to not wearing shoes, running barefoot everywhere because he can't really tie shoes to his leg when he shifts. Quil tried once, with flip-flops. He'd managed to tie them to his leg, but by the end of the run he only had one left and it was virtually torn in half. After that they'd all given up on shoes. Jacob knows that he won't need a jacket, he is warm enough without one, but it looked better if he was wearing one should anyone see him. There are already enough odd things in Forks without him adding to them.
"Jake?" his father calls to him, once again, his voice soft. Jacob pauses in his door-way and half turns. He's hidden by the shadows of his room, the tips of his toes lit by the hall lighting. He wonders whether it says something about him. Something deep and psychologically revealing; he'd even go for poetic. Truth is though, he imagines it says very little, it just reminds him of what he is and what he isn't. "Tell the Cullens, if they need anything, they can call us."
He wasn't expecting his father to say that, not with their history, but he nods. Just once. Message received. They might be wolves but they're human too, sometimes they have to show it to others to remind themselves.
He dresses quickly, the beauty of owning mainly black t-shirts and jeans is that they always match and he can – quite literally – get dressed in the dark. The only thing he's forced to search for is his other boot, which he finds under his bed. His dad is still sitting in the dimly-lit hallway, his face creased with worry lines that make him seem, to Jacob's eyes, very vulnerable. His dark skin is puckered and raised, goose-bumps scattered over the flesh and Jacob cups a cold shoulder with his hot palm. "Go to bed, Dad," he insists softly, pressing a kiss into his father's raven-black hair. "It'll be fine. Always is."
"Be safe, Jake."
Jacob squeezes his father's shoulder just because he can. Because he suspects that somehow, after tonight, nothing will be the same, and presses another kiss to that weathered brow. "Always am old man."
The door creaks shut behind him as he leaves their ramshackle little house and he's part way down the gravel path before the hall light switches off.
Bella clings to him like a limpet the entire ride to the Cullen's house. He can feel her shaking against his back and every now and then he hears a muffled sob. Her fingers are digging into his t-shirt, her blunt nails scratching at the flesh of his waist. She's wearing his leather jacket and rather than a testament of how important she is to him, it merely signifies just how messed up she is. She'd been stood on her front porch in just her jeans and a shirt when he'd pulled up at her house. Her arms were frozen and her face, normally pale, was tinged blue and Jacob couldn't help but worry how long she'd been stood outside waiting. He had a horrible feeling that she'd been there since he hung up the phone.
She'd warmed up quickly though, once she was on the bike with her arms round his waist. It seemed as though his only real use where Bella was concerned was personal heater – and soon she would not even need him for that. Soon, soon no matter how hot he was, he'd never really be able to heat her cold dead flesh.
The Cullen house is, to Jacob's eyes, quite the perversion and that has nothing to do with its nightmarish occupants trying to play human. He just thinks that a building like that – all shining glass and sharp angles – really has no place in the forest. It is not organic. It's probably won awards and was inevitably designed by some famous architect whose drawings cost more money than Jacob will ever know, but it is still a monstrosity. It mars the beauty of the pines that fold in on it, trying to blot it from prying eyes as if they too were ashamed of it. It was so artificial, so human, despite all the wood cladding and the headlight of his bike reflects dizzyingly in all the glass. He hates it. If he lived this deep in the forest, all he'd need would be a little log cabin with a bed and a tiny kitchen and he'd be happy. He wouldn't need a satellite dish or balconies with loungers. All he'd need would be what nature gave freely. Air, wood, earth and water. He'd provide the heat.
Bella's off the bike before he's even killed the engine or put the kick-stand down and she slides on the gravel, tripping over her feet as she runs to the door. Jacob intends to follow her at a more sedate pace but as he watches her fumble the steps he speeds up, catching her before she takes a nose-dive into the decking. Setting her on her feet again he follows closely as she approaches the door.
All he can smell is leech. It is pungent, burning at his olfactory senses like he's just dipped his nose in a vat of acid. The air smells putrid. It had been Jared who'd described it the best – they, vampires, leeches, bloodsuckers, they smelled of death. Not quite the thick stench of a decaying corpse but of fresh death, the death of mere hours rather than days, when the blood has just settled and the limbs have just started to seize and the body is now cool to touch. And blood. Thick cloying blood. It makes him dizzy and he can feel his hackles rise. He doesn't like it. He doesn't want to be here. But Bella has his hand in a death grip, her knuckles are white and clearly visible in the moonlight, and his dad would be so disappointed if he ran.
So he stays. He walks with Bella to the door and consciously breathes through his mouth and tries not to jump when the tiny vampire with the pixie like features jerks the door open.