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Imprinting (and Other Disasters)

By amep

Fantasy / Romance

Preface & Just Put Me Out of My Misery

Nature Boy

There was a boy.

A very strange, enchanted boy.

They say he wandered very far,

very far over land and sea.

A little shy and sad of eye,

But very wise was he.

And then one day,

one magic day he passed my way.

While we spoke of many things,

fools and kings, this he said to me:

"The greatest thing you'll ever learn

is just to love and be loved in return."

~ David Bowie

PREFACE

(POV – Jacob)

Given my past, you'd think I'd be used to losing the one I love. Given my luck, you'd think it shouldn't even come as much of a surprise. I guess it's different when the person you're losing is the one you're supposed to be with forever, and when it's your fault... Fucking imprinting. Mother Nature really seemed to have it in for me.

I would gladly give my life in place of theirs. I never had to second guess that, not once. But the world doesn't seem to work that way. It isn't fair. But life's not fair… I guess I should get used to that.

CHAPTER ONE: Just Put Me Out of My Misery…

She's dead. That thing killed her. Even if that filthy bloodsucker is able to transform her in time, Bella's as good as dead to me…

These were my thoughts as I stormed down the stairs. I barely noticed the blonde one holding that demon baby – if you could even call it a baby – in the living room out of the corner of my eye. I headed straight for the door and sprinted to the tree line. I pulled off my cutoffs and fastened them to the leather cord I kept tied around my ankle for this exact purpose. Looking back now I'm surprised I even stopped to do this because I was seeing red. I just remember this feeling coming out of nowhere that made me think rationally for that brief moment. I phased as soon as I was sure they weren't going to come loose.

Jake! What happened? It was Seth. I sent him a mental picture of what I'd just seen. It was easier and I was too angry for words.

Oh, no… Jacob, I'm so sorry. Where are y––

I cut him off angrily, Not now, Seth.

He continued anyway, Jake, we need a game plan. We still don't know what it––

Not now, Seth! I just need to be alone for a while… Seth could see what I meant by being alone.

Jacob, you're our alpha! You can't just take off again for who knows how long! I could tell that Seth was worried and hurt that disappearing would even cross my mind.

Deep down I knew he was right, but I didn't want to hear it. I just needed to run for a while. Seth, the love of my life just died. You don't understand. I need to be alone right now.

She's not the love–– Seth began. I knew where he was going with this. He was going to try and push the fucking Bella's-not-meant-for-you-wait-until-you-find-your -imprint bullshit on me now.

Go home, Seth. That came out harsher than I'd meant, Tell Leah that I said for the two of you to do nothing about the half-breed until you hear from me.

But Jake––

That's an order. The alpha tone rang with that last statement. Seth was then silent. I could still feel the presence of his mind as I continued to run, not really paying attention to where I was going. Not too long after, I felt him withdraw completely and knew that he'd phased back.

Finally, I thought. It was then that I let the full force of my pain wash over me.

I don't know how long I ran. I ran with no intention of slowing down and total unawareness of my direction or physical pain from the exertion. I may have just been running in circles for all I know. It wasn't until I noticed the trees starting to lighten and the sun starting to rise behind me that I noticed just how tired I was. I barely remember almost collapsing in a small clearing as I let sleep overtake me.

The sun had just passed its highest point when it woke me. I found myself still in a furry state, which normally I wouldn't mind. But today, I had a feeling that told me it'd be better to be human right now. I phased back and detached my cutoffs from my leather cord. I refused to call it an anklet. That made me cringe; for some reason it reminded me of Bella. I fought off the urge to start crying as I pulled on my shorts. The right leg had a good amount of mud on it. Of course, I must have slept on them last night. I thought sourly.

I felt like something was compelling me to walk, so I walked. I had no idea where I was going, or where I was for that matter. This wasn't a big deal; I could always smell my way back when I was ready. I was vaguely aware of my stomach grumbling because I'd slept through a meal. Truth was I didn't really care. I just kept walking, head hung low and trying not to think about the loss of my friend, the girl I loved–– but I was failing miserably.

I walked around for quite some time wrapped up in my thoughts. I noticed my direction was taking me toward a steep, rocky mountain side. Good, maybe I can bury myself in cave somewhere or, better yet, get caught in a landslide and be lucky enough have my head crushed by a big rock. I imagined that would be a more or less painless, quick way to go. Hadn't I suffered enough already?

I drew closer to the mountainside. Before I knew it, I found myself in a clearing face to face with vertical wall of solid rock. But I was not the only one in the clearing.

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