A couple of weeks later, Bella was sitting on the steps to her house, waiting for the contractors to arrive to deal with the changes she wanted to be made. She was all alone, had been for a few weeks now. Her father had left after a couple of days, he insisted on inspecting the house and make his own observations and he came with good suggestions, not all of them she was going to listen to, but some. To make him happy. It took some arranging of agendas and planners for the contractors go come and she was glad everything finally worked out.
She didn’t understand why Isaac went to get his old job back at the cemetery. While she understood that he didn’t want to go back to school, he didn’t need a job. She had plenty of money. Hell, she even offered to split the remaining money in half but he didn’t want it. She didn’t want the money either. It was far too much for one person, especially if they weren’t going to travel around the globe – she quite liked it in Beacon Hills so far. No, Isaac wanted to earn money and do something with it. Some sort of secret project he had been mumbling about in his sleep. Bella was sure that one of these nights, she’d get to hear what this secret project was.
Scott and everyone else were back in school until their next break which wouldn’t be until Christmas and even though Chris Argent didn’t mind her staying at his house during the day, she had started to feel a little bit useless and had left the house. It was a good thing that the workers were coming today so she could at least do something even if it was just to open the door.
Yes, it had started to become slightly colder now that Autumn was here, but it was still California and she loved it. No thick jackets or starting to wrap herself up in thick layers of clothing, just a simple cardigan would do and she loved it.
When she saw movement down the street, she looked up from her styrofoam cup of tea and sighed when she saw that it was Peter. She didn’t know him that well, not as well as some of Isaac’s friends, but she thought he was entertaining. He was there in Derek’s loft at her first full moon and hadn’t given her shit yet so he wasn’t on the ‘meh’ list so far. He seemed to move a little bit awkwardly, almost as if he was in pain. Had something happened? “Morning,” she greeted him.
“Oh good, you left out the ‘good’,” Peter sighed as he sat down next to her on the steps. “Nice house.”
“Uhuh. What happened?”
“What do you mean?”
“Well, it’s not a good morning and you move stupidly. Did you fall down the stairs?”
Peter let out a low growl and absentmindedly rubbed his chest. “Some idiot with no mouth broke into the loft and threw an icepick at me. He left me for dead.”
“Obviously not.” He waved to the house, changing the subject. “Did you buy it with my money?”
A couple of days ago, someone broke into the Hale vault and stole Peter’s money. He’d been on a warpath since, and Bella had been fortunate to have been left out of the war zone. Until now. At least he wasn’t snarling at her, she’d snarl right back at him. “No. Why do you think that?” Bella asked as she took a sip of her tea.
“You’re the most recent thing coming into Beacon Hills. Not much is known about you other than you’re a special werewolf and that you tend to hang with the wrong people.”
“Oh,” she smiled at him and grinned. “I’m a suspect? That’s so cool!” She turned a little to face him with a big smile on her face. “You think I stole your money? Because I bought a house?”
“Amongst other things.”
“I have my own money. I’ve earned it for being the human pet of a bunch of vampires,” Bella said morosely as she looked at Peter. She then giggled as she saw the look on his face. “I get it why you think I have something to do with it but seriously? I’m like the person who’s the least needy for money.”
“Fine,” Peter sighed and dismissively waved his hand. “What about that boy of yours?”
“He’s a puppy.”
“Yeah… he doesn’t really have the mind of a criminal mastermind.”
“Hey! Give him some credit, will you?” Bella laughed as she nearly inhaled her sip of tea. “Did you tell Derek?”
“Oh! About that,” Peter groaned as he got to his feet when the vans of the construction crew showed up. “He’s hired someone to find the person responsible for the heist. Her name is Braeden. Isaac knows her. Don’t tell him she’s back in town.”
“Why not?” Bella cocked her head, feeling worried and possessive for a moment as she watched Peter take his leave, hearing him quietly snicker as he walked off. “Asshole!” Yeah, she didn’t have anything to worry about. Isaac was hers.
She hung around for a little while to make sure that the contractors indeed knew what they were doing and headed into town when she was satisfied. There was no need to stick around, really. There wasn’t anything to steal in that house and she had other things to do; such as getting a Nutella pancake. Or get the ingredients, go to Argent’s place and make Nutella pancakes. She was sure that the smell would wake up Isaac and when he was awake, they could have sex.
No, that was too selfish. She could go for a nap herself. Just curl up next to him and doze off. No, that would be stupid. Or maybe not, seeing as it was the full moon again tonight and she’d probably be up all night because Scott wanted to keep an eye on her. She scoffed as she kicked a small pebble on the street. She was fine. It was the new kid that Scott bit that he needed to worry about.
While she had tried to stay away from Scott and his friends as well as she could, Isaac still hung out with them somewhat, after school and staying in the loop of supernatural happenings. She wasn’t interested in that, not even when Isaac mentioned that morning that Scott bit someone to save him from a killer with no mouth.
When Peter had mentioned the guy earlier, she didn’t bat an eye. It wasn’t really her thing to get involved, was it? She felt bad about it, sure, but she had her house to think about. Her own nest. The excitement of the house finally being remodeled made her nauseous at times, but that was great. A house. For her. And Isaac.
While she and Isaac had been ordering things online for the house, she couldn’t help but window shop a little. She had liked the way her room looked in Forks, the fairy lights, for example. Done right and it was romantic. She definitely wanted to have them again. Maybe not in the bedroom, seeing as she was going to share it with Isaac. She had called him stupid for not wanting to be involved in the decorating of the house. It was his house just as it was hers. When she said that he could have the house when she was tired of him, he got angry and possessive about her and fucked her senseless after dragging her out of Argent’s house and into the woods behind it. It was very hot.
She ducked into the store and bought fairy lights in all sorts of colors before heading to the supermarket and get some snacks for everyone. If she was going to have to suffer through another full moon of Scott keeping an eye on her, she wanted to have the good stuff to keep her entertained. Taking a nap right now sounded great.
Bella wasn’t sure why the lights were off in the lake house for when Liam arrived, but it wasn’t as if they needed the light to see anyway. Being a werewolf had its perks; extra sight and all that. She was sitting on the sofa, all cozied up to Isaac when the boy arrived and Stiles said it was some sort of intervention. The look on Liam’s face, when things were explained to him, was hilarious, especially when he asked Stiles what he was. “For a little while I was possessed by an evil spirit. He was very evil.”
Bella liked Stiles. He was the only human in Scott’s pack, but his wit and sarcasm fit right in.
“What are you now?” Liam asked, slightly irritated by Stiles’ remark.
Liam’s frown turned even more sour before his eyes fell upon her and Isaac. “Werewolf and a werewolf with vampire venom in her blood? How does that work?”
Bella shrugged for an answer, not wanting to poke the bear. Liam was angry enough. He had a lot to deal with, just like Bella had to do, but considering Liam’s life had been pretty decent apart from his bursts of anger while growing up, everything must be quite a shock. She listened to the conversation a little while drawing little circles with her index finger over Isaac’s shirt and had to laugh when Liam called them all psychotic nutjobs.
The boy was this close to losing it, the room had started to feel tense and Bella had to admit, when Liam started to double over from sensory overload, she scooted even closer to Isaac before noticing that there were cars coming. What the fuck? They were supposed to be all alone at the Lake House, who invited more people? This was a clusterfuck waiting to happen.
While Scott and Kira carted Liam off to the boathouse – great, open space, Bella thought that was a bad idea – Malia showed that she still hadn’t learned to control herself and Stiles brought her to the basement. “How are you feeling, Bella?” Isaac asked her softly as he caressed her hair. “In control?”
“Of course,” she replied with a nod. “And horny.”
Isaac chuckled at that. “In the mood for a party?”
“I think Scott needs help with Liam.”
“Yeah, he might need an extra pair of hands…”
“Then again… Scott has a fox with him. Stiles is all alone.”
“Let’s just go home,” Bella sighed as she nuzzled his earlobe. The living room started to fill with partying teenagers and she didn’t want to stick around.
“He’s a big boy,” Bella smiled at him. She had realized a week ago that there wasn’t really a spot anymore for Isaac in Scott’s pack, especially not for Bella despite her somewhat accepting him as an Alpha. They were on the outside, looking in. More like floaters, like a turd in water. Or whatever. “You can ask him if he needs us? But we’re basically here because he didn’t trust my control. Thinking it was a fluke.” She was waiting for Isaac to realize her thoughts about Scott’s pack too, but the boy was so happy to be back in Beacon Hills that it was going to take some time. It wasn’t as if they couldn’t be friends anymore, they just lead different lives now.
“It obviously isn’t.”
“Obviously,” Bella whined as someone sat down next to her. “Go ask. Tell him we’re leaving if he doesn’t need us.”
She thought it was sweet of Isaac to watch his friends play a Lacrosse game a few days later, and that he felt saddened that he wasn’t playing anymore. Maybe, just maybe, Isaac had made the wrong decision of going to work instead of finishing school, but he told her he didn’t regret anything. It was sweet of him of not telling her when he was hanging out with his friends, but she knew. He’d leave for work early during the day and in the morning she’d find torn or dirty clothes and she didn’t say anything about it.
Bella wanted to, she was slightly worried that he had become interested in another girl and that there would come an end to their agreement, but she also knew that she could trust him. He had missed them and he wanted to spend more time with his friends, helping them out, especially with Liam.
Since she didn’t have anything to do – apart from making sure the house would turn out okay – she wanted to help too, but Isaac told her she didn’t have to, that she should enjoy exploring Beacon Hills and Beacon County without having to worry about everything. It was only after the CDC closed down the high school that she learned what was going on.
Mostly because one night, Stiles was in Argent’s weapon’s locker and she overheard them while Isaac was out helping Scott. Talking about a dead pool of supernaturals in Beacon Hills, that there had been many casualties and that so far, Scott and his pack had been safe but that they were now going to try to catch the elusive leader of the dead pool. The plan sounded ridiculous and probably wouldn’t work. Of course, when she was about to leave and see if she could help – anywhere, her stomach decided to twist itself into a knot and she had to throw up.
She was sick of being sick. There wasn’t a day going by where she didn’t throw up and it was a bug she didn’t seem to be able to shake. It threw a wrench in most of her plans because she usually felt so drained after throwing up, that she wanted to take a nap or move very slowly. Or stuff her face with food but she was afraid that if she ate too soon after expelling it from her body, she’d have to do it again.
In all honesty, Bella felt like a miserable old hag and she was glad that Isaac wasn’t around much because she didn’t want to hurt him. She didn’t want him to leave her because she was grumpy and sick, and sometimes crying because she felt miserable without being able to stop it. It felt like PMS, but worse.
The next morning, she realized Isaac hadn’t come home and even though she didn’t want to act like the controlling girlfriend – because she wasn’t his girlfriend – she tried his phone a few times and didn’t get any answer. She called Scott, but he was too busy and he immediately told her that everyone else was busy as well but assured her that Isaac was a creature of habit and wouldn’t just run away on her. That didn’t help her much, it only helped to grow her agitation. She got dressed and cursed her jeans for not fitting properly anymore and ripped a little of the sides to help her get in.
She grabbed a banana off the kitchen counter before heading towards the house that was still being remodeled, maybe Isaac was there, working on his secret project or whatever and had fallen asleep. She was humming to herself when out of nowhere, Peter stepped in her path. “Morning!” He greeted her as he stopped her from walking. “Did you hear about the dead pool?”
“Only yesterday?” Peter blinked and slowly shook his head while making a disapproving noise. “Why didn’t they tell you before?”
“Because what can I do? Vomit all over the list or the killers?” Bella stepped around him and continued to walk towards the house. “I don’t know, maybe, deep down, Scott doesn’t trust me. Isaac’s been helping him, I know that, but other than that?”
“You’re still angry with Scott?”
“Yes,” Bella kicked against a rock and heard it shatter a window somewhere. “Werewolves should do what they’re supposed to do; kill when able or necessary. Killing the Cullens was necessary and he let a few of them walk.”
“I don’t want to play Devil’s advocate but…”
“What? There are enough of them left to find a new family, make a new family, and try it with a new girl all over again. How’s that not a big enough of a threat?”
Peter shrugged as he put his hands in his pockets. “I would have killed them.”
“Exactly. But Scott thinks that everyone, including bad people, should have a chance to redeem themselves.”
“Yes, which is mostly the reason why I’m still here,” Peter said with a grin. “Because of my redeeming qualities and Scott’s inability to kill.”
“I think he’s able, he just doesn’t like to do it.”
“He has me and Derek for that.”
“Apparently,” she kept walking towards the house, but already knew it was going to be a bust. She didn’t smell Isaac at all and hadn’t found a new trail since leaving the house. She could follow his scent to his job and the supermarket if she wanted to, but it was his day off today. And last night he went to help Scott. “Did you see Isaac last night?”
“I’m afraid not. I was doing some bonding with the daughter I didn’t know I had.”
Bella shrugged for an answer. “It’s easy to tell, really. Same bone structure, the forehead…”
“Daughter of a cop.”
“Yep,” she grinned as she frowned. There weren’t any vans outside the house while normally there were and she didn’t receive a call that they weren’t going to come today. “This is odd…”
“Trouble?” Peter asked, looking at the young werewolf.
Bella huffed as she opened the door. “Of course not, who would want to go after me?” She got a fright when she saw Aro standing in the living room, accompanied by Jane and Alice. Out of instinct, she pulled Peter closer to her so that Jane couldn’t hurt him and Alice couldn’t read him. “The fuck!” she exclaimed as she looked at the threesome. Usually, Marcus and Caius weren’t far behind where Aro was concerned, but they were probably with Felix and his buddies to be protected somewhere close by. “Get out of my house!”
“Come now, Bella, is that the way you treat old friends?” Aro smiled at her and opened his arms wide, almost as if he wanted her to hug him. She simply stared at him, trying to control her breathing as not to turn into a wolf. While the walls were probably werewolf-proof, she was certain that they weren’t Cold One proof and she didn’t want the house to come down upon them. “I guess it is,” Aro said simply, clasping his hands in front of him again. “You probably want to know what we’re doing here.”
“You want to kill me.”
“Hardly,” Aro replied as he nodded towards Alice. “When Alice and Jasper came before us, confessing what they had done to you and why, I could not believe them. Not even after reading their thoughts. Young Bella Swan, the golden boy’s savior, a werewolf? And killing Cullens? It’s simply unheard of! And what will young Isaac think of you being with this man?”
Bella blinked at that, looking at Alice for answers, but she wasn’t talking, only looking to the floor as she stood there. Jane was concentrating, hard, Bella could see that, but as long as Peter stayed with Bella, he was safe, and that was probably very frustrating for her. Her eyes fell back onto Aro’s face and she let out a snarl. “What did you do?”
“Oh, no harm has come to the young werewolf,” Aro smirked. “But please, allow us to take you to him. You can leave your friend here.”
“In exchange for what?”
“We’ll discuss the terms in a more… suitable environment. We brought our wives with us as well, let’s have a civil lunch together.”
“Bella, don’t,” Peter warned her and she looked up to him.
“They have Isaac. I’m not going to allow them to take away my toys.”
“How many of them are there?”
“Probably a few. But don’t worry, they know they’ll lose the fight. Nothing will happen. Go home, Peter.”
“No, not up for discussion.”
Growling, Bella shoved him away from her, out of her bubble, giving Jane the opportunity to hurt him, quite bad. “Don’t kill him,” Bella said to Jane as she motioned for Aro to lead the way. “Or I will kill you.”