I'll Love You For A Thousand Years
I just hoped that what they said wasn't true and that our families would remain safe, but part of me knew that that wasn't the case, so there was only one thing I had to do.
I would have to sacrifice myself to the Volturi for the greater good, but something told me that would be easier said than done.
Keep changing your mind. That's the only way they won't know where you're going. Keep changing your mind.
That's what I kept telling myself as I got off the plane and was in Italy. I knew that if Alice or Owen saw what I was doing they would try and stop me. This had to be done. Besides, Xavier said that Aro only wished to speak with me, it wasn't like he was going to keep me prisoner. That was another thing he said as well.
It was a long plane ride but once I was off and in Rome that I would need to rent a car to get to Volterra. I sighed and made sure to keep changing my mind and not making a sure decision. I knew that they would soon catch on to this plan, but I hoped it would be later rather than sooner.
I walked up to the counter and asked where I could rent a car and was told that there was one last car left. He handed me the keys and told me that the car was parked in spot number three. I nodded and said my thanks in fluent Italian and walked towards the car. I stopped dead in my tracks when I saw it. It looked amazing! It was a bright yellow Porche, I grinned ear to ear and hopped in the car and started driving. I checked the map and saw that it would be awhile till I reached my destination.
I managed to keep my mind wandering and making sure not to set my mind on anything concrete. I had my phone on silent but saw that I had about ten missed calls and eight voicemails. I cleared them all and ignored the voicemails. I knew they just wanted what was best for me, but I wanted what was best for them. I wasn't about to let any of my family to get hurt just because I didn't go.
I just hoped they would understand what I did, I did for them.
3rd person POV:
"What do you mean you can't see where she is, where is she Alice? I mean, it's not like she just fell off the face of the earth. She has to be somewhere." Edward said impatiently as he started pacing the floor. Edward was always very protective of Bella, when he first saw her, she saw right through him. They had a deep connection, but Edward always felt it was his duty to protect Bella considering when they first met, she was still a fragile human. Even though Bella was now a vampire, and a very powerful one at that, he still felt very protective of her and not knowing where she could be scared him. He lost her once; he wasn't bound to let that happen again.
"I never said I couldn't 'see' her Edward, it's just she isn't making any certain decisions for me to lock on to, it's like she's purposely making sure I can't find where she really is." Alice said with annoyance.
It pained both covens, the one that Bella helped found, and Carlisle's, that Bella just decided to disappear without any word where she would be going. Faith and Hope were pacing back and forth behind the couch. Jasper managed to send them waves of calm to help them relax and still be helpful to the search of where Bella might have gone, while Owen was also trying to scan his mind where Bella might be.
"Wait, that's it! That's why we can't find her." Carlisle said as he quickly stood up after thinking hard, along with the others, on the couch so that everyone could see that he had a real theory of what was going on with Alice and Owen's powers. "What if the reason neither Alice nor Owen can find Bella, is that she doesn't want us knowing where she's going."
That's when it clicked for everyone. It was like a light bulb clicked on when they all realized that Bella didn't want any of them to get hurt, and was purposely keeping her true destination and intentions secret from both Owen and Alice.
"Well, if that's true, then where is she going that she wouldn't want us to follow?"
Edward shot his head up and his eyes turned dark. He remembered what those two vampires from the Volturi guard told him and Bella when they were out visiting their meadow; that Aro wanted an audience with her. She was allowed to leave, but it wasn't that simple. It never was with him.
"I know where she's headed; Alice do you think I can get there before her?" Edward asked as he headed towards the door with his car keys. "I'm not sure she has a half a day start already, you might get there just as she does or right after her." Alice said telepathically to Edward as he was headed down the road, leaving Forks, and headed towards Volterra, Italy and to stop Bella, and if that wasn't an option, at least try and bargain with the Volturi to make sure that she stayed with her coven and his. He would have to think of a reason. There was a possibility that they might bring up Bella's powerful gifts.
He knew that they were very powerful, but very draining as well. He also knew that Eleazar, from the Denali coven in Alaska, would be able to help Bella get a handle on her gifts and keep them under control, that way the Volturi wouldn't see her as a threat.
I finally reached Volterra; the streets were crowded with people dressed in red and wearing red cloaks. I wasn't quite sure what they were doing, but decided to park my car on the side of a crowded road and got out and started walking towards what I assumed was the Volturi headquarters. I guessed this because there were two vampires standing guard outside the building on either side of the big doors.
With my vampire speed I walked somewhat faster than a normal human would, but I couldn't all out run, because then I would draw attention to myself. Once I was at the door both vampires zipped over to me and towered over me.
"What do you want?"
He didn't even ask if I was a vampire, but then it was obvious to tell the difference between humans and vampires around here. I told him my name and that I had an audience with Aro. They chuckled and didn't budge.
"Xavier and Elijah came and told me if that's the proof you need." I said. I was starting to get a bit annoyed with them.
"That so, well they've informed us to be on the lookout for you. Go on ahead; Hilary will escort you to where you need to go." The second guard said. They stepped aside and let me in. I walked in and was in awe of the place. It had cathedral ceilings and each window was covered in different shades of red stained glass to form the symbol for, what I assumed, was the Volturi. I took in everything around me. I saw that each doorway was guarded by another vampire.
Once I got to the end of the long corridor I was greeted by two familiar faces. I sighed and kept my temper under control. I would need to. I wouldn't want to come off as a threat to the Volturi, because according to Edward, they would destroy vampires who were deemed a threat or even more powerful than themselves.
"Well, looks like Aro's invitation got through to her." Elijah sneered towards me. It took all I had to keep my mouth shut. Ever since my powers started to develop I've had a much more short fuse when it came to my temper.
"Yes, welcome Bella. Aro and his brothers have been waiting for you." Xavier said with a neutral expression. I was starting to question why Xavier was a part of the guard. He was too mellow compared to Elijah.
I nodded and started walking towards the door. They both opened the door simultaneously and escorted me into the room. I looked around and saw that it looked older than the rest of the building. The walls were made of stone, and the tapestries were made of satin; one hung on each wall. I looked up and saw that it had a double vaulted ceiling and at where all four walls met at the top was a glass skylight, the longer I stared, the more it looked as if there was no glass and that it was just the clear sky.
I was brought out of my dream like stare and saw what was in front of me. In front of me sat three rather old vampires. I knew their names, but did not know which for sure which one belonged to each one. The vampire sitting in the middle throne stood and started to smile, but I wouldn't even call it a smile. He reminded me of a lion that had cornered its prey.
"So, you must be the beautiful Bella that has all of our guard talking. Your name does you justice, Bella; I am Aro, to my left is Caius, and to my right is Marcus. We are the founders of the Volturi. But I'm sure that you already know who we are."
Aro walked towards me and kept direct eye contact with me. I was almost afraid to move, and once he was right in front of me, he took my hand and held it, unlike Edward's, Aro's was not warm, it was cold and almost like a trap; even if I wanted to move my hand away, I couldn't.
"See, my power is seeing all memories and thoughts just by touching…interesting…I am unable to see all of your memories. I am only able to see partial ones."
And as if like magic I was able to get my hand away quickly and rubbed it. It must be his gift that makes his hand cold as ice.
"I was told that I have a mental shield, and that is why you are unable to see into my mind."
Aro's expression quickly changed and had an almost sadistic grin on his face and called for someone named "Jane" and someone named "Alec". They looked remarkably alike, almost like twins. "This is only to test what you've just told me, see; both their powers work on the mind. I want to see if you are affected in any way."
I just nodded without speaking, I didn't trust my voice to try and speak. All Aro did was nod towards, who I assumed was Jane, and immediately she scowled at me and locked eyes on me. I just stood there waiting. I felt something starting to happen, it was almost a headache, but then it quickly went away. When I blinked I heard Jane screaming in pain on the floor. Everyone, but Aro, Caius, and Marcus showed shock towards Jane screaming. I was a bit confused. As far as I knew causing pain wasn't part of my gift. I was only able to create a mental shield and a physical one as well.
"Bella, Jane's gift is to create the illusion pain in a vampire's mind. So far, you are looking very interesting as time goes on." Next Aro nodded to Alec, but something a bit different. It was almost as if my tongue went numb and was almost a sweet smell too, but just like Jane's power, it quickly went away and soon Alec complained of not being able to see or feel. This caused Jane to quickly go to her twin and check him out. But soon the effects of his gift wore off himself as well.
"Very interesting…" Caius said from his chair. He leaned back in his chair and took in the scene before him. I had a feeling that I might end up having to stay here, but I knew that I was only asked to visit. I wasn't forced to stay.
"Yes it is, Bella your gift is very interesting. I extend the same invitation to you, as I do every vampire we meet that has extraordinary gifts, to stay with us and be a part of our guard." Aro said as he took his seat. I was very tempted to, but then I felt as if I was only 'wanted' because of my gift and I would only be treated as a 'tool' for the Volturi to use to hurt others.
"She has a connection to another vampire, from what I can see, it is Edward Cullen." Marcus said very melancholy. His voice was very monotone and very, for lack of a better word, bored with what was going on. This assessment made Aro's eyes widen with glee.
"Well now, we have offered him a position as well, but he and that psychic vampire, Alice, both have declined, but then we cannot force vampires to join if they do not wish to." I could tell that that one rule annoyed Aro a great deal, but since he is in charge of the Vampire world he has to follow his own rules as well, and for that, I was very happy.
"Aro, as much as I would like to accept your offer, I cannot. I do not wish to join your guard. I merely came here because you invited me, and it would be rude to decline, plus I didn't want Elijah to come back and attack my coven, or the Cullens in retaliation." I said staring a hole right at Elijah. I knew what I did was risky, but maybe calling him out in front of Aro would discourage him from doing so.
"I assure you Isabella, that Elijah will not harm your coven or the Cullens. Also, know that the invitation to come live with us remains open whenever you like. You are free to go, on one condition." Aro said as he got up from his seat and walked slowly, for a vampire, towards me and stood in front of me again. "The condition being that we never hear word of you using your powers in front of humans. That is one of our main laws that we ask all vampires to follow. But I'm sure that you already know this." I nodded and acknowledged that I was already aware of that particular law.
I saw a vampire standing between Aro's and Caius' chair. She had light brown hair and bright red eyes, which of course meant that she was not a vegetarian. Aro must have seen my eye contact drift and turned to see me staring and he let out a slight chuckle.
"That is Chelsea. She is very powerful. Actually she is more powerful than Jane or Alec. You say that you have a mental shield, and looks like it can withhold Jane's and Alec's powers, so before you go why don't you let Chelsea see if she can work her power on you." Aro said with an evil grin. I almost was afraid of what might happen.
Chelsea smirked at me and kept eye contact with me. I started thinking of Edward.
Wait, why was I thinking of him?
I was starting to think of how everything he did annoyed me. I couldn't help but be so annoyed with him I almost didn't want to go home to him. Then I started thinking about both covens, mine, and Carlisle's and how every little thing that annoyed me bothered me so much.
Wait! This is her power! She can manipulate my feelings towards my coven and Edward! I've got to fight this!
I kept trying to rationalize that even though they annoyed me, that they were still my family, friends, and my mate. I wasn't about to let this bitch make me forget him. I already forgot who he was once, I wasn't about to let it happen again.
I mentally started to push her out of my head. I closed my eyes and started to meditate like Edward showed me. He told me that he would do this so that all the thoughts he would hear wouldn't be as strong or loud.
"Ugh! Aro she's fighting it!" Chelsea harshly whispered in his ear, but thanks to me being a vampire as well I could hear her. I couldn't help but smirk a bit. If this was their plan, I wasn't about to let them get me to join them under false pretenses.
"Well, looks like your mental shield is very strong Bella. I must say again, the invitation to join the Volturi guard is still open for you."
"Thank you for the opportunity Aro, but again I will not join the Volturi. I have a coven that I care about and I know that they are probably worried about me. Thank you for allowing me to visit." I bowed to show my loyalty and Aro nodded, but I could sense that he wasn't happy that he had lost. He nodded and held up his hand and waved for Elijah and Xavier to open the doors for me and escort me back out of the castle. I nodded again and followed them back out to the street and saw that it was now dark.
I said my goodbyes to Xavier and Elijah, Elijah blew me off and walked back inside, but Xavier stayed long enough to shake my hand and smile. "Your gift is very interesting Bella. I may come visit you and your coven, on non Volturi business of course." He said with a smile. I agreed that that would be nice. With that, Xavier walked back in and shut the door behind him. I sighed and walked back across the plaza and passed the water fountain I glanced at it as I walked back to my parked car.
Once I was back to the side street I saw a figure standing next to the driver side door. As I got closer to my car I couldn't help but grin, but was still somewhat mad. Edward had followed me. I was mad, but only for a second. I couldn't help but love him even more for trying to protect me.
"You know that you almost joined the Volturi?" Edward said with a concerned look on his face. I remembered that I had stopped 'changing my destination' once I was inside. I knew that they would worry, but this was something I had to do myself. I didn't want to risk having more visits from the guard and a possible war between my coven, Edward's and the Volturi.
"Alice saw that for a few minutes and she started to panic, but then luckily for you it quickly skipped ahead to where you and I are right now. Looks like Aro's right. Your shield is strong. But then I think you make yourself strong, not your shield." Edward said with his signature crooked grin. I couldn't help but smile back at him. I walked to him and we locked in a long tight hug. I was finally home, and I wasn't a threat to the Volturi. I would be able to live my existence without the Volturi ruining it. I would have to get my gift under control of course.
"What are you thinking about?" Edward said as he broke our hug and stared into my eyes. I saw question in them, but then I remembered what I had secretly been learning to do. I couldn't help but smile at him.
"Why don't you find out for yourself Edward." I said with a big smile. I quickly started to focus on lifting my inner shield on my mind so that he could hear.
"I'll love you for a thousand years, and a thousand more Edward."
I couldn't help but grin at him. His expression was priceless. It was both astonishment, and ecstatic that he was finally able to hear my thoughts. Before I could even say anything else he snatched me up in a very passionate kiss. This made me lose focus and like a rubber band, my shield snapped back in on itself. I winced but didn't let up on the kiss. I finally found love, and I wasn't about to let that get away from me for a second time.
Finally we pulled away from each other and I was sad that we stopped, but quickly remembered that we would have to go back home.
"Don't worry, no one is 'angry' with you Bella, we were only worried. Plus, you might be the only person who has been able to stand up to Chelsea and fight her power." Edward said with admiration. I just smiled and told him that I didn't want to be separated from you again. He quickly agreed. He offered to drive me back to the airport.
"I have this rental car to return, but how about we race back to the airport. Whoever gets there first has to do a favor for the other." I really didn't care if lost; I knew that Edward wouldn't care either. He agreed to the race and we quickly got in our cars and started the race. I wasn't racing to the airport, I knew the faster I got to the airport, the quicker I could get back home to my family and my coven.
A/N: So what did you think? I normally don't do this, but I think this story is complete with only just 17 chapters and an epilogue. I won't make it official until I know for sure. Let me know if there's something that I could elaborate on that I missed. Because if you do, then this story could extend past chapter 17 ;) lol.