Bella never goes to Forks, instead living with Renee and Phil throughout high school. During her 3rd year at NYU, she is studying abroad in Florence, Italy. Her life is forever changed when she is compelled to visit Volterra; stumbling into a world she never dreamed could exist. AU, OOC, MA, Bella/Jasper

A Note from Mae

I am an avid fan of Twilight fanfiction. I've also been a fan of writing my own stories from time to time. So I decided to combine the two and recently started writing my own fanfiction. Feel free to check out my profile on FFn.

This blog is primarily for additional info and pics to accompany my story, Unfathomable Bonds. This is my first multi-chapter fanfiction story and I'm very excited about it.

If this story sounds interesting to you, please check it out. If you do, please feel free to let me know how you like it.

Lots of love, Mae.

Disclaimer: Stephenie Meyer owns Twilight and all its affiliated characters; I just like to play with them. I also do not own any of the artwork discussed in any chapter of this fic. I am merely using them in one way or another for the purpose of my story.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

UB Chapter 13 - Bad News Travels Fast

Charlotte POV

“Damn it.  You’re lucky I love you so fucking much or else I’d roast your balls,” I grumbled at Peter as we ghosted through the hall toward Marcus’ chambers.  “It’s hopeless.”  I sighed, looking down at my ruined shirt – one of my favorites.  My darling husband had had the grand idea of trying his hand at laundry.  There is a reason I do the laundry at home.  My clothes always suffered, as evidenced by the shrunken shirt I was wearing, when he did it.  The damn thing barely covered my tits. 

Peter, of course, was drinking in the sight.  I knew he wanted to drag me back to our room, or even against the wall, but he knew he couldn’t or else we’d be late – and it wouldn’t do to be late to a meeting with the Masters.  I snorted.  It served the bastard right that he would have to keep it in his pants until after our meeting.  The fucker had been trying to bounce quarters off my tits when we got the summons.  I only had time to grab a white button down shirt.

Of course, as luck would have it, Peter had also washed and shrunk this shirt, so the best I could do was cover the outsides of my boobs and tie it under them.  Great.  Now I looked like Daisy fucking Duke.  I was going to give my husband a piece of my mind later – complete with my foot up his ass if he didn’t apologize properly.

Like I said, there is a reason I don’t let him do the fucking laundry.

With a final glare at my husband, who just gave me a smile and a wink, I knocked on the door to the Masters’ chambers.  Not half a second later, it was opened by Marcus.  He took in my attire and raised his eyes to mine in question.  I just pointed at Peter, who smirked, and Marcus shook his head.

“Please make yourselves comfortable.  I fear we have some distressing news to impart.  We await only Caius at present.”  Marcus stepped back, allowing us to enter, before he closed the door behind us. 

As we made our way across the room, I noted everyone present.  Aro occupied a large wingback chair to one side.  He had a dark, brooding expression on his face as he watched Bella and Sera talk quietly on the sofa to his right.

Marcus took the empty space next to Sera on the sofa and returned her soft smile as he did so.  I grinned at that.  It was good to see him happy.  I have great respect for the man, I always have, but he seriously needed someone to smack him out of his head, so-to-speak. 

Peter sat on one of the chairs on the other side of the sofa and I perched my ass on its arm while smiling at Jasper.  He was standing behind the sofa to one side - our side.  Like Marcus, Jasper noted my undersized tops and raised an eyebrow at me.  I snorted and glared at Peter a moment before turning back to Jasper. 

As Jasper chuckled and shook his head, Bella, who was seated in front of him on the sofa, turned toward him.  I watched them for a moment.  Bella’s eyes were light and her smile soft and inviting as she looked up at him in question.

Jasper leaned down to her and gave her a sexy little smile.  “I’ll tell you later, princess,” he whispered.

Bella smiled back, her cheeks turning just a little pink before her attention was drawn back to Sera, who had asked her a question.

I continued watching them for a few moments.  Jasper continuously scoped the room for threats, as did Peter and I.  It was a lesson learned long ago - always be aware of your surroundings.  So, while Jasper was ever the soldier and keeping his vigil as such, his eyes would travel repeatedly back to Bella, filled with a mixture of interest and confusion. 

Bella was no less interested, it seemed.  When she thought no one was looking, she would sneak a peek at him.  Sometimes he would catch her, but he’d just grin, making her give a smile, but she’d blush and turn away quickly, embarrassed it seemed. 

After watching them flirt for a while, I looked down at Peter.  He had been watching them too.  I saw his gaze turn and I followed it to Marcus and Aro, who were also watching the couple’s play with interest.  Peter caught Marcus’ gaze, the obvious question in his eyes.  Marcus glanced at Jasper and Bella, who were too busy flirting in that moment to notice us, before looking back at us.  He gave a small smile and the slightest nod, but we saw it.

“Holy shit!” I exclaimed in a loud voice, excited as I realized what this meant.  Seven pairs of eyes turned to me and I froze a second before spitting out the first thing that came to mind.  “I forgot to add the fabric softener!”

Fuck, I sounded like Peter.  But it wasn’t like I could blurt out that I was surprised and happy that Jasper had found his mate now, could I?


Jasper POV

I looked around the room, curious about Char’s outburst and the heavy torrent of happiness and excitement that was coming from the vampires within.  I would have asked them about it, but Aro stood and moved to the side, calling me over to him.

Moving swiftly across the room, I was at his side in a moment.  “Master?”

“Jasper, we may have need of your gift this evening,” he began.  “There is much to tell and I fear at least one part will be quite distressing.”

“Of course, Master.”

As we returned to our previous locations, there was another knock on the door.  Marcus answered it and greeted Caius briefly before they joined the rest of us.  Marcus resumed his seat next to Sera and Caius sat in an unoccupied wing chair next to Aro.

Now that all the players had assembled, Aro leaned forward in his seat to address the room.  “Thank you all for coming.  I have much news.”  He looked over to Sera and Bella, pausing.  I felt indecision and worry before he continued.  “Normally, we would not be sharing such things with you, but in this instance there may be a need for you to know.”  Before they could speak, he continued.  “You will understand soon enough, I fear.”

The room was filled with confusion from all but the Masters, including my own.

Marcus spoke next, addressing the women beside him.  “Do you recall when we spoke of being a newborn?”

Bella’s eyebrows were scrunched together in an adorably curious expression, but she answered in the affirmative.  “Yes.  You said we’d be really fast and strong but also bloodthirsty and temperamental.  Uncontrollable, right?”

“Precisely.  Throughout our history, there have been times when those seeking power would create armies of newborns to aid them, taking advantage of their newborn strengths.  At those times, we were forced to take action against these armies and their leaders.”  He paused, frowning.  “The loss of so many lives in this fashion is unfortunate, but it is a necessary evil, if you will.”

I focused on Bella.  She was upset at the thought of such losses, her compassion and sorrow at the forefront of her emotions, but she was also projecting understanding for such methods.  She stayed silent as Marcus spoke, the underlying curiosity still there as she waited for the stories to be told and her part in it. 

I had to admit to my own curiosity.  Why were Bella and Sera being informed of these things?  What did the women have to do with the newborn situation?  What news had Aro discovered that made him decide to involve them?

I kept my questions to myself for now and listened to Marcus speak.  He started off explaining that Peter, Charlotte, and I had a history dealing with newborns and, more specifically, newborn armies.  He didn’t go into any detail regarding our past experiences, for which I was grateful.  I owned up to my past, but it was a private thing and I thought each person should decide to divulge it as they wished, as well as to whom.

There were even a few moments set aside to give more details on our positions within the Volturi.  I had already informed Bella of my own position, but she listened quietly as Marcus recounted them and filled her in on Peter’s and Charlotte’s positions.  Essentially they were liaisons for the Volturi, enforcers of our laws and information gatherers based primarily in the United States, although their domain included all of North America.

Every once in a while during the telling, Bella would turn my way, as if she were checking to see if I was still there.  She’d then smile at me and turn back to the conversation at hand.  It was a quick glance, but it warmed me just the same.  My interest in this woman grew with each small gesture.

Aro then took over the conversation.  He gave a brief rundown of the current newborn situation, beginning with Peter and Charlotte receiving the initial reports a few months ago and all subsequent events that led up to the previous night when Laurent attacked.  He even mentioned our subsequent discussion after the fact and what we’d learned from our prisoner before his execution.

I glanced at Caius.  He was quiet and looked as if he was brooding, but I knew that look.  He was planning, strategizing.  They must have learned something and he was going over the various options, accepting and discarding them much as I would have done.  In this area, Caius and I were very much alike, which explained our mutual respect.

Aro’s eyes drifted to Bella as he paused, his lips forming in a grim line as if he had a distaste for what he was about to reveal.  His emotions only confirmed it.  My curiosity spiked again and I felt myself growing impatient.  But now that the ‘history lesson’ was over, I was sure he would get to the point, so I gathered my patience and pushed it across to the others in the room who were getting just as antsy as I was with the delay.

“I did speak with Carlisle, but before that I would like to hear from Peter and Charlotte.  Have you learned anything new?”  Aro turned his attention to the couple in the chair.

“Not really,” Charlotte answered.  “Additional reports in the same areas, including a few still in Vegas.  It seems we didn’t catch them all, but there aren’t as many as there are in southern California and Washington.”

“I think if we send a few of the Guard to deal with Vegas, it should be fairly simple.  At my best guess, there isn’t more than a handful left,” Peter suggested.  “We have a few people keeping an eye out in the other two areas but nothing concrete yet.  A few leads on bases that need to be checked out, that kind of thing.  No news on the ringleader, though.”

What Peter left unsaid was that we still didn’t know if Maria was involved.  I couldn’t stifle the low growl at the thought of my sire.  If I ever got my hands on that bitch again, I would rip her head from her shoulders and burn her body while she watched. 

Bella had turned to look at me, worry seeping from her upon hearing my growl.  Taking a breath, I forced a smile for her.  She raised her eyebrow at me and I felt her disbelief, but she turned back to Marcus so he could continue.

Everyone was quiet for a moment, each lost in their thoughts.  I centered myself, pushing back my thoughts of revenge for now as we continued our discussions.

“Thank you, Peter…Charlotte,” Aro acknowledged each of them before moving on.  “My discussion with Carlisle did give us some additional information.  As requested, his seer has been searching for any information that could aid us.  In addition, the rest of his coven has volunteered their services.  They have been scouting the area between Seattle and their home.  They have been hoping to capture and interrogate a newborn or follow a scent back to a home base.”

I decided to speak up at this.  “Do they have any experience with handling newborns if they do catch one?  Would they be able to keep the captive in custody until we could send someone to interrogate, or perhaps until Demetri can get there and then let the newborn go and track him?”

Aro held up his hand, stemming my flow of questions.  “These are all options.  They have yet to capture a newborn, but if and when they do, we will keep that in mind.  However, the Cullens do have one advantage.  The boy, Edward, is a mind reader.”  I raised an eyebrow in surprise.  “His ability is different from my own, as it seems he can use it at a distance.  He does not require touch, but he only gets surface thoughts.”

“It could prove very useful to you, Jasper,” Caius spoke up.  “However, they have no skill in interrogation, and since the boy only reads the surface thoughts, we want you, Peter, or Demetri to do the questioning.  This should bring the thoughts to the forefront for the mind reader if the newborn is uncooperative.”

Nodding my agreement to Caius, I began turning over tactics in my mind.  Interrogating a newborn may be fruitless.  Depending on the level of their bloodlust and their age, they may be too wild for coherent thought.  But it was worth a try. 

“The Cullens have come across a few kills that look to be the work of these newborns.  Thankfully, most of the attacks are being written off as either serial killers in the cities or animal maulings in the forests.  But Carlisle is getting distressed.  The attacks are spiraling out further and further each week.  We must put a stop to this and soon.”  Aro’s voice was firm as he made his decree.  Everyone in the room felt the same.

“Was there anything from the seer, or anything else the Cullens could find out?”  Peter asked.

“The seer is mostly getting random images of attacks.  Most have been reported and others are too obscure for her to decipher, but she is continuing to look,” Aro replied.

Caius sat forward in his seat and addressed me.  “Jasper, we want you to go to the Cullens.  They’ve offered to help.  You can use their home as a base while you are in the area.  Utilize their gifts.  Maybe you will be able to capture one of these newborns.”

Peter interjected, “What about Char and me?”

Caius looked to me and I knew he wanted my input.  After a brief moment to consider our options, I spoke.  “I think I should go to Washington, as you said.  Peter and Charlotte could go to California, hook up with their contacts, and then do a little recon.  They can hook up with me in Washington later if needed.  I think Demetri should go with a few of the Guard to Vegas.  He can deal with the newborns left there and then meet up with me, and he’ll be close so that if either Peter or I capture a newborn before that, he can get to us quickly to help with our catch and release plan.”

“Agreed.  We’ll send Felix with Demetri and a few lesser Guardsmen.  Peter and Charlotte, we’ll send Jane and Alec with you in case you run into any trouble in California.  We can decide later who to send north if and when it comes to that, or vice versa.  And we’ll expect daily reports at minimum.”  Caius looked at each of us, waiting for our nods of agreement. 

Bella raised a delicate hand, drawing our attention.  “Um, this is all fascinating and all, but…I’m confused why you’re telling us this?”  I felt her wonder and confusion at the mass of information she’d been given, but just like the other night when faced with the truth of what we are, she was taking it amazingly well.

Aro glanced quickly at me before turning back to Bella.  “My dear,” he began but paused.  I could feel the turmoil within him and I could tell this was not going to be good.  “The Cullens, do you know them?”

Her face scrunched up in that confused look I found so enchanting.  “No.  Should I?”

Aro shook his head.  “No, I just thought you might.  You see, they live in Forks at present and I thought your father might have spoken of them.”

Fear and dread filled the room, mixing within Bella along with worry.  She gripped her hands together in her lap, clasping them so tight I could see her knuckles whiten.  I stepped from behind the sofa and sat next to her, placing a hand on her shoulder and dreading Aro’s next words.

“I’m so sorry, Bella,” Aro said.  At his words, Bella’s heart plummeted and she began to shake her head, tears slipping from her eyes.  “It seems that one of the newborns…well, your father…he was attacked.”  Aro’s emotions mirrored those of the others in the room.  “He’s dead, Bella.”

Bella turned to me, grabbing hold of my hand and begging me with those beautiful brown eyes to tell her it wasn’t true.  But I knew it was.  Much as I wished it weren’t true for her sake, I had to nod my head, affirming what Aro had told her.  Even if I didn’t trust that Aro would never say such a thing were it not the truth, I could feel his emotions.  He was genuinely upset and worried for Bella. 

“No, no, no!  Jasper…” she cried, her face twisted in grief.  Her expression, coupled with the anguish and loss I could feel from her, struck me.  I sent her a touch of serenity - just enough to take the edge off - but I let her grieve.  Pulling her into my embrace, I held her close.  She cried heavy tears, wetting my shirt, as the others watched morosely. 

Sera sat on the other side of Bella.  She too was crying, and she leaned into Bella’s back, stroking her hair and trying to offer what comfort she could to her friend. 

Time passed slowly as I held Bella in my embrace.  I barely noted the departure of Aro, Caius, Peter, and Charlotte.  My entire focus was on the petite woman crying her heart out into my shirt.  Sera and I did our best to comfort her as Marcus watched from afar. His face was a mask, but his emotions were swirling with sorrow for his friend.

Eventually, Bella cried herself out and lay quietly in my arms.  I felt her exhaustion - both physical and emotional - so I enhanced it just a bit until she fell under its spell.  

“I think I should take Bella to her room.”  I looked up at Marcus and Sera, who both stood.  Sera seemed as if she wanted to come with me, but Marcus took her hand and gently shook his head. 

“Please, Jasper, take care of her,” Sera pleaded.

“Of course,” I promised her.  Sweeping one arm under Bella’s legs, I lifted her against me and stood, uttering a swift but respectful goodbye before striding across the room and out the door with her in my arms.

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