Jacob and I were the last to arrive back at the house. The downstairs was, once again, crowded as ever, but this time with much more
appealing company. Nahuel and his sisters thanked everyone and said a hasty
good-bye as soon they could without being rude. Zafrina left with them,
planting a swift kiss on my cheek as she darted out the door.
Carlisle and the rest of our family had gathered around the dining room table. Carlisle sat
at one end of the colossal table and Marcus sat at the other, with his face resting
wearily on his right hand, eyes cast down on the dark mahogany surface. His
face, as always, betrayed his broken and desolate posture as the rest of our
guests filled in the empty space around the table.
Jacob and I took refuge in the corner facing the table. My body wasn’t tired, but I
couldn’t resist touching him now that I knew the danger had past. I leaned
backwards into his chest, and he wrapped his strong arms around the tops of my
shoulders, kissing the top of my head. Reaching up, I curved my fingers, as best
I could, around his forearms, and gave him an affectionate squeeze.
Renata sat to Marcus’s left looking just as devastated as he did, while the other three
new vampires sat opposite them at the table next to Alice
and Jasper. It was strange to think that these six new vampires now made up the
Volturi and the guard. Felix and Renata joined Marcus, replacing Aro and Caius,
and the other three completed the cornerstones of the Volturi defense. The
little blond vampire with curly hair flashed everyone wide smiles around the
table- obviously her mood had not been damped by the earlier afternoon. Carlisle
caught her eye and smiled softly before he spoke.
“Marcus, we can’t thank you and your new guard enough for what you have done for us. We are
sorry for uniting with the Volturi to stand against you, but you must know what
we were led to believe. We have nothing but gracious thoughts for you all now.”
He began. “Of course, you are all welcome to stay here as long as you wish.”
Marcus sat up straight, pulling his face off his hands, and clasped them together on the
table in front of him. His expression was still miserable, but his eyes
softened as he looked around the room at our family, finally resting his gaze
“I did what I knew to be right,” he said with reverence. “I used to believe in the
legitimacy of our great counsel, but over the last few centuries Aro and Caius
have bastardized our reputation, making excuses and grasping at straws to enact
their own sense of ‘justice.’ They have done nothing short of initiating a
tyrannical quest for power and domination, just like this vendetta against your
family. At least now, we can return this counsel to what it was originally intended for-
maintaining order and enforcing justice. ”
Marcus paused for a moment looking around the room at all our faces again. The richness of his voice still lingered in the air, as we all held tight to his every word. He smiled wryly and continued.
“Aro was threatened by your talented family and was unable to stand the humiliation of being defeated in front of so many witnesses last
time.” He looked directly at me and I felt Jacob’s arms tighten around me in
“He used the excuse of your lovely daughter, and the alliance with the wolves as an excuse to return, but I would not stand for it.
I am sure you are able to piece together what happened next?” he looked
meaningfully to my parents, and my father nodded back to him in response. He
was reading Marcus’s thoughts easily, but remained silent, giving Marcus the
“I set out to find anyone who would side me to protect your family. I did not have enough time to gather everyone who stood with you last
time, so I singled out the individuals who I sensed had the strongest bond and
loyalty to your family and to your daughter. Zafrina was an obvious choice, and
she was near the other half-breeds, but Demetri got to them first.” He
explained. He gestured to the other new vampires sitting to his right with a
casual wave of his hand. They looked around excitedly, happy to finally be
“We immediately went to Emelia and Tabiah seeking their help, and then later Ivan joined us,” he said.
The Nordic, white haired vampire sat silently at the end of the table. He hadn’t said a single word since he arrived, and preferred merely
to nod his responses to everyone, but he smiled pleasantly throughout the
It was the two female vampires who now held my fascination. I hadn’t realized that they
made up a coven until that very moment. They both seemed so separate and
distinct. Tabiah’s face was remarkably beautiful, even amongst vampires. She
had very high cheek bones and almond, almost slightly slanted eyes, and even
though her skin was pale you could tell in her human life she had a soft mocha
skin tone, which toned down her bright crimson eyes to a dull burgundy. Her
thick hair was a glossy black and fell, stick straight, to the middle of her
back. She had a very somber demeanor and was very soft spoken.
Emelia was practically bouncing out of her chair with excitement waiting until it was her turn to talk.
“Of course, we said yes to Marcus right away!” she exploded. “The Volturi have been trying to recruit us for centuries, but neither of us
trusted them. We thought them tyrants too. When Marcus told us this incredible
story about your unique daughter, werewolves, and the Volturi’s plan, we jumped
at the chance to help.”
My mouth dropped open as she spoke. Centuries? Of course, vampires were immortal so this was a definite possibility, but she looked so young.
It was difficult for me to wrap my mind around the fact that this nymph like
creature could be hundreds of years old. Her voice had the pealing bell like sound
of a baby, and she held the same, sweet, innocent expression of a child when
she spoke. She looked at me and flashed me another irresistible grin, and her
eyes widened with excitement when I chuckled at her enthusiasm.
“We had never heard of such a thing, and had to come see for ourselves!” she said incredulously, staring right at me.
“You mean, you risked your lives to stand against the Volturi out of sheer curiosity?” I asked amazed.
“Yes, well that, and the fact that we loathed them.” Tabiah chimed in.
Emelia nodded in response, her enthusiasm still at full volume. Her golden ringlets bunched
around her shoulders, as she half rose from her chair, leaning the rest of her
weight against the table. She locked her gaze on me once again and waived her
hand in the air dismissively.
“It was worth it just to see you.” She said easily. “You are quite beautiful-
shockingly so, if I dare say, but such a believable likeness to a human. I can
hear your quickened heart beat…and you are warm. I can feel the heat rolling
off you from here.”
She looked to Marcus quickly and then back to me again, her eyes still wide with curiosity. I felt like a sculpture in a museum when people
walked around it, critiquing its craftsmanship. Jacob pulled me tighter against
him as her eyes roved over me.
“Marcus says that you can go out in the daytime, without the cover of clouds, and that you drink blood like we do…is this true?” she asked.
“Yes,” I replied, “but there are limitations…I’m not as fast or as strong, and I have to sleep.”
Her eyes widened even further and she tilted her head to the side in amazement. Tabiah and Ivan held the same expression but they did not speak.
“Amazing” she breathed. “I wonder if…never mind.”
My father’s booming guffaw filled the room at that moment. I looked over and he was shaking with laughter. Everyone but Emeila and Alice
seemed confused- Alice smirked, and
looked over to Jacob and me with a bemused expression.
“What?” I demanded.
“She wants to know if she can touch you,” my father choked out the words between laughs.
She dropped her head slightly in embarrassment but peeked up at me with a hopeful smile. I had to admit, it was a little funny, not to
mention a nice relief. All my life other vampires had regarded my uniqueness as
a threat, fearful of me. I was so grateful that someone found me interesting
enough to want to touch. I joined in the laughter and waved her over to me. She
moved so fast I didn’t see her until she was standing right next to me. The
sudden proximity made Jacob jump and he pulled me a few feet away from her.
“Its okay, Jake. I want her to.” I said soothingly. I closed the distance between us, breaking away from Jacob’s grasp momentarily.
“Absolutely magnificent,” she said, as her hands traced my face and down my shoulders, pinching at the softness of my arms. She marveled
over the texture making comments on how durable, yet fleshy, it was at the same
time. She put her hand over my heart to feel the reverberation beneath my ribs
and stroked my hair. Finally, she took a step back from me, shaking her head
back and forth.
“Truly remarkable,” she said to herself, giving me the final once over. “We will have to hunt together before I leave. I want to see you in action!”
I had to laugh at her enthusiasm. She was truly childlike, despite her age, as she looked at me like a shiny new toy. Jacob moved over and
put his arm around my shoulder again. Her eyes snapped up, taking in his massive
frame, and she looked him up and down in the same probing manner as she did me.
“So, you are a werewolf?” she asked him playfully, obviously not repulsed by him at all. She stepped closer and reached out to touch his arm gingerly with her index finger.
“Whoa…you’re burning up!” she exclaimed
My whole family tensed nervously waiting for Jake’s response, but at this point he seemed just as taken by her as we all were. A huge grin
broke across his face as he looked down at her tiny frame, poking at him like a
science experiment, and he threw his head back and laughed.
“Yeah, I run a little hot,” he responded.
Her curiosity raged unhindered now. She looked up at him with wide eyes and pursed her lips together. You could see the wheels turning as she thought of which question to ask first.
“So, you don’t need a full moon, obviously?” she began.
Jacob’s face looked glorious as his smile stretched back over his white teeth.
“Then how do you get all…all wolfy?” she asked with a short laugh, searching for the right words.
“I phase.” He shrugged and said it simply as if this would be common knowledge.
Her expression transitioned from exuberance to skepticism and she leaned up on her tip toes to whisper to him. He leaned down still smiling, anxious to hear what she would ask.
“Can I see it?” she breathed the words, arching her eyebrows in a hopeful visage.
Everyone in my family had heard her request and they all burst into laughter- Jacob laughing the loudest. Emeila, Tabiah, Ivan, even Marcus joined in the laughter.
“I’d be happy to, but Esme gets mad at me when I break the furniture,” Jacob explained,
“Plus, I don’t have a change of clothes and I’m not comfortable being naked in
front of all these people.” He was obviously teasing, but I could hear the
disappointment in his voice though. “Nessie can show you though if you really
want to see.”
He nudged me forward towards Emeila who was thoroughly confused by this point. I smiled at her, absolutely elated to show such a talented vampire my gift, and held my palms up in front of me.
“Show me?” she asked raising an eyebrow.
“Yes, I just need to make contact with your skin,” I explained. She looked from my palms, to my face, and back again, and reached up to touch my palm with her index finger. I grinned at her playfully.
“It works best this way,” I ignored her nervous expression and stepped forward, placing one hand on the side of her face, and the other
against her neck. She gasped as I let the flow of my thoughts stream into her
mind. She stared straight ahead looking at the vision of Jacob phasing in to
his wolf form. I couldn’t tell if she was more shocked by the sudden flow of
thoughts, or the sight of him phasing, but when it was over I pulled away, and
she stood in the same spot with her mouth gaping open and staring at me.
“You really are something else!” she huffed. She closed her mouth and grinned at me again.
“Well, we wouldn’t have expected anything else from such talented parents,” Marcus piped up. “She is a Cullen after all”
Oh! With all the looming danger and excitement it hadn’t had time to sink in. We still
hadn’t told our family the big news yet. I whipped around to look at my father
silently asking him if we could tell everyone, but he was staring at Jacob- who
had beaten me to it. The happiness felt like it would burst forth from my skin
when I saw my father nod a yes to Jacob. He leaned down and put his arm around
my waist, turning me so I was facing the rest of our guests. The room full of
vampires hadn’t missed our obvious exchange, and suddenly sixteen sets of eyes
were on us. Jacob cleared his throat but looked only at me when he spoke.
“Actually, she is no longer Renesmee Cullen. Yesterday, she did me the honor of becoming my wife…today she is Renesmee Black.”
The entire room erupted into confused, yet excited, murmers and Jacob and I were engulfed
in a sea of hard, icy bodies, all clamoring to hug and kiss us. Marcus kissed
the top of my hand and told us congratulations. And I couldn’t help but laugh
as my family took turns patting Jacob on the back, calling him son, brother,
and ,of course, ‘bloodsucker.’ It was
the most perfect and blissful moment- all the fear and danger had subsided, and
we were ready to start our life together.
Alice immediately pulled me aside to discuss the details of the ceremony.
“It’s all yours, Aunt Alice.” I promised. I had awful visions of myself dressed in some
frilly dress with my hair piled on top of my head, but I didn’t care at this
“When is the ceremony?” Marcus asked eagerly. “We would love to be here if that would be alright?
“Of course, we wouldn’t have it any other way!” I assured him. Alice came over and stood
beside Marcus, Jacob and I. She reached over and stretched up to put her
slender arm through Marcus’s.
“I can pull this together in less than a week,” she said confidently. Then with a quick jerk of my arm she was hauling me up the staircase to start the planning……