“Not happening,” Jasper snarled, glaring at the fire and the rapidly disintegrating letter. “I’m not sending you into enemy territory like a pig to slaughter. Who the fuck knows what that sadistic fuck wants with the two of you? It’s. Not. Happening!”
“I agree,” Edward said, crushing me to his chest. I just got you back. The way I felt when I was injured, when we were separated? No! NO! I’m never letting you go! You’re mine! Not his. NO! NO! NO!
“Edward, you need calm down,” I said as I turned in his arms. His panic was feeding Jasper’s.
“We all need to calm down,” Carlisle retorted, his voice full of resonance and authority. “Alice, what do you see if we send you and Bella?” Jasper and Edward both rumbled lowly. “I’m not saying we’re sending them, just what would happen?”
“It’s the only way for us to stand a chance of winning this battle. Do I see casualties? Yes, but for the most part, we all survive,” she said.
“What do you mean casualties, Tink?” Emmett asked as he gripped onto Rose. “Deaths or injuries like what Bella and Edward had to contend with?”
“Injuries and I’m seeing some death, but who it is…it’s unclear,” Alice said as her eyes narrowed. I could see her vision and it wasn’t clear at all. There was a lot of smoke and the smell of burning vamps filled our noses. “However, the only way this happens is if Bella and I go into their custody.”
“Do you see what they’re going to do to you?” Esme asked, her voice wavering. “I will rip that monster to shreds if he hurts either one of my daughters.”
“That’s unclear, too. I don’t think James wants to hurt us. He just wants our powers,” Alice said, arching a brow.
“This is a monster who took my angel’s innocence. This is a monster who is creating vampires to take over the city of Chicago. I’m not…no. You two are not going,” Edward said adamantly. “Why aren’t the Volturi coming and doing their fucking jobs? This is their domain in dealing with this shit.”
“I don’t know, Edward,” Eleazar said as he held his mate’s hand. “Normally, this sort of behavior would be handled with a swift and harsh hand. It’s almost like they’re turning a blind eye to this because they want James to succeed?”
“Really?” Carlisle scoffed. “I doubt that.”
“Well, they need to do something. James is delusional if he thinks that this plan is going to work. The way he’s thinking, humans will be driven to the point of extinction. Someone needs to bring them up to speed about the brevity of this situation,” Kate said. She turned to Garrett. “Want to fly to Italy, baby?”
He wrinkled his nose before nodding. “I’ll go make arrangements, love.”
“That still doesn’t fix what’s going on,” Jasper snapped. “Alice and Bella are not going to Chicago. It’s just not in the realm of possibilities. I need my mate, my wife. Edward will crumble if he doesn’t have his mate.” At that, Edward held me closer, kissing my neck and whimpering quietly.
“Jasper, we don’t have a choice. If we don’t go, we all die. If we do go, we stand a good chance of winning this,” Alice whispered, taking Jasper’s face into her hands.
“NO. I forbid this, Alice. You can’t go,” he sobbed, clawing at her body. “I can’t be without you…”
“If we don’t, we’ll have a month left with each other before we all die,” Alice whispered. “It’s our only chance of survival.” He choked out a sob before he scooped her up, darting away with her.
“When will we have to go?” I asked, my voice sounding hollow.
“You’re not going,” Edward growled. “No!”
“Edward, it’s the only way that we’ll have a chance to be together. To live our lives, happily. I have to do this. For us. For our family. For our way of living,” I muttered, turning in his arms. “I hate being away from you, but if it means we have a chance of survival, then I’m going to do it.”
“Everywhere we turn, something is ripping us apart. First, it’s Emmett with his hatred of you due to the person who changed him. Then, it’s the monster who tried to abduct me on our wedding night. Then, it’s this situation in Chicago. Our injuries and now, James is forcing you to join his band of evil for his own enjoyment? I DON’T FUCKING THINK SO!!!!” Edward screamed. “I will take you and run away, hiding you from that sadistic mother fucking prick if it’s the last thing I do on this miserable little planet. You are not going to him.”
“You don’t have a choice,” I said, narrowing my eyes at my mate. “Edward, I love you with my whole heart and soul, but all of this is because of me and my meddling in Victoria’s hunt. In some strange way, I feel responsible. It’s the only way I can rectify this situation, Edward.”
He roared and stared at me angrily before hopping up out of the chaise lounge. He gave me a parting sneer before taking off into the night. A low boom indicated he went supersonic, running away from me. My heart lurched and I collapsed onto the ground, sobbing brokenly.
He was gone.
He was gone and I had pushed him away.
Despite being surrounded by my family, I felt alone.
Again, I was alone and this time it was all my fault.
Edward was gone.