My heart felt like it had been ripped out of my chest. What was I thinking yelling at Sam when I should have been focused on Seth? I should have known he would take
off after Jacob, given the way he felt about the Cullens. I should have gone
over to console him after Jacob left, knowing the way he idolized him.


Instead I let my temper get the best of me. I let my anger for Sam distract me from my highest priority; my baby brother. I had just hauled Sam over the coals for letting his emotions
cloud his judgment, and now I had done the same thing. I felt like a total
hypocrite. I had promised myself I would look after Seth and protect him, and
now he was gone. My legs felt wobbly underneath me and I sank to the ground,
devastated.


            The entire pack was howling furiously around me- everyone was at a loss at this point, and a blanketed state of despair, panic, and uncertainty weighed heavily in
everyone thoughts. Sam, who had lost all traces of hatred and anger at this
point, looked over at me with a sorrowful expression. He walked slowly over to
me and nudged me softly with his nose.


            I whimpered and looked away, resting my head on my paws.


            “Just breathe, Leah,” He said. “He’ll be alright.”


            I didn’t respond. I didn’t have the energy to do anything right at that moment. I listened in my head for Jacob and Seth looking for just the slightest inkling
as to where they were headed. But of course, I already knew the answer to that
question and I shuddered. Surely, Jacob would turn him around and make him come
home, wouldn’t he? I picked my head up and inclined it towards the trees hoping
to pick up their thoughts, but I couldn’t hear past all the howling.


            Sam looked up suddenly, tensing. “Everyone, QUIET!” he commanded. The entire pack fell silent.


            “Sam please,” I wailed. “You have to make him come back! If anything happens to him I’ll…“


            “Shh!” he responded. He put his head low to the ground and closed his eyes, concentrating. I held my breath, counting the seconds until he finally spoke
again.


“I can’t” he finally whispered.


What? What do you meant you can’t” I responded mystified. “You’re the Alpha, you can make him do whatever you want him to. Make him come back!”


“I can’t hear him anymore, Leah. He’s no longer part of the pack…Jacob’s his alpha now.”


A unified feeling of disbelief circulated through the pack. Two separate packs? How was that possible? My head reeled and I jumped to my feet.  I
couldn’t believe this was happening. This whole debacle had literally ripped us
in half and now my little brother was protecting our enemy. He was now in
danger…from us, his own family. I felt dizzy and close to fainting as I
panicked- I would never let anyone hurt him. I’d fight the whole pack myself…


“Easy Leah,” Sam breathed in my ear. He pushed himself up against me so I wouldn’t fall.  Nothing’s going to happen to him. We’ll hold off on the attack for now. I don’t want Seth to get hurt, either.”


I whirled on him and butted the side of his face with my head. He took a tentative step back from me.


“Don’t tell me to take it easy. In fact, don’t tell me to do anything anymore. I don’t care who the hell you are, alpha or not, this is all your fault!”


Quil took a step over to stand beside me.


“Give him a break, Leah. Nobody knew this was going to happen.”
            He moved quickly enough
that my teeth snapped just inches from his face.


“Shut up, Quil. It isn’t your baby brother who felt like he had to run off and join a coven. I’ll say what I like, thank you very much.” I turned my attention back to Sam.


What did you expect to happen when you forced this pack to fight against their own brother…or do you not think of Jacob that way anymore?” I said accusingly.


“I didn’t think- “


“Exactly, you didn’t think. And now look what’s happened.”


Quil moved a few feet out my range, but tried again.


“Come on Leah. We don’t like this anymore than you do, but nobody made them leave.”
            “No, she’s right.”
Sam whispered dejectedly. “This is my fault. I should have listened to Jacob
and respected what he wanted. I lost sight of the big picture and what we were
bound to protect. I made him and Seth feel they had no other choice, and I’m
sorry.”


The pain saturating his thoughts was so profound I couldn’t find the words to argue with him further. I didn’t exactly feel bad for him, but I relaxed now that I knew we weren’t still planning to
attack the Cullens. My breathing slowed and my heart rate went back to normal,
but I couldn’t shake the sick feeling in the pit of my stomach.


“What do we do now,” asked Paul.


Sam sat down on his haunches, anguish radiating off his entire body.


“Nothing.” He said firmly. “Hopefully, Jacob and Seth will come back once they realize we aren’t taking action. We’ll wait here for now just in case our mistake incites a response from the
Cullens,”
and then cutting me a swift look out of the corner of his eye, “Of
course, if it does we will only defend the perimeter. We won’t fight against
them.”


I stood up and trotted over to Sam.
            “Can I go home?” Even
though it was in the form of a question I said like a demand.


“Leah, I don’t think that is a good idea.” He responded gently.


“It isn’t for me, it’s for my mother. I’m sure the fact that her youngest child has decided to become a vampire guard dog may be of interest to her.”


“Maybe now really isn’t the right time for that, Leah.”


“Oh really? Well, then when do you think it would be a good time…before or after the vampires turn him into kibble?


“That’s not going to happen. I’ll make sure that-“


You’ll make sure of what? That he’ll be safe?” I scoffed. “I’d say that based on today’s events that your decision making leaves quite a lot to be desired. I don’t think my mother
will be interested in your reassurances any longer.” 


I turned my back to him and started walking toward the tree line.


“Of course, you’re welcome to come with me and tell her yourself. I’d LOVE to hear Sue give you a piece of her mind” I called over my shoulder. I chuckled under my breath at the thought of that- my mother was not exactly a woman you wanted on your bad side.


I slowed my trot waiting to see if he was going to give a command to make me stay, but there was nothing. Hopefully he'd gotten tired of playing the dictator.


I broke into a light jog. I was not in any hurry to break the news to my mother- she could be quite scary when she was angry. She wasn’t exactly the biggest fan of Sam’s either. Between the wake of turmoil it had left when he imprinted on Emily, and the fact that he let
Seth fight at such an early age, my mother considered him to be overly zealous.
She believed a true leader of a pack should be more level headed, acting on
rationale and the greater good, versus impulse and testosterone. I imagined he
didn’t think that much of her either.


“Actually, I really like your mom. Always have.”


I yelped, tripping mid stride and whipped around to find myself face to face with Sam.


“How did you…I didn’t hear you leave the pack.” I said flustered.


“You aren’t the only one who can quiet your thoughts, Leah. I had to force myself not to think about it because I knew if you heard me coming I wouldn’t have the slightest chance at catching
you.”


“Oh. Well then, what do you want?” I said haughtily.


“Please don’t leave.”
            “Oh, for crying out loud, I’m just going to tell my mom what happened. I already told you that I’d be
back later. “


“No, I meant don’t leave the pack.” He clarified. I could feel the thoughts of the others avidly focused on our conversation now.


“What makes you think I’m leaving?” I asked


“Hold on a second.” He said, and then turned quickly and walked behind a tree. I felt the faint shimmer and then he emerged in his human form, wearing his cutoffs- obviously whatever he had to say to me he didn't want an audience.  He lifted a hand in my direction gesturing for me to do the same. All I had was my tank top and my underwear with me.


I shook my head.


“Please Leah? It’s not like that, really. I won’t even look, I promise.”
            I rolled my eyes and huffed, but I walked behind the same tree he had, making sure to smack him in the face with my tail as I passed. I could hear the rest of the pack’s
amusement as they watched him spit out the fur.


I sat back on my hind legs and let the heat ripple through me as it pulled me back to my human form. I fumbled with the leather cord around my calf trying to untie it, but I was all thumbs; as if being stark naked in the middle of the woods wasn’t unnerving enough without having
your ex looming directly behind you. I pulled the tank top over my head quickly
and slipped on the matching boy short underwear, happy that I had thrown a pair
of jeans over my sleep set this morning. I still felt ridiculous, but at least
I wasn’t wearing a thong. I poked my head around the tree before I stepped out.


Sam still had his back to me and was staring down at his feet.


“Okay, so what did you want to talk about that is so important that I have to be in my underwear to hear it?”


He glanced over his shoulder tentatively and then looked back down.


“I wanted to tell you not to leave the pack.” With his back to me the sound was muffled and distant and I had to strain to hear him.


“Oh, just go ahead and turn around already.” I said. “This isn’t the first time you’ve seen me in my underwear.”


And it was true. He had seen me wearing a lot less than this on numerous occasions in the past, and for that matter, so had the rest of the entire pack. When I had first joined the pack I
was already angry all the time, so it took practically nothing to make me
explode out of my clothes without a moment’s hesitation. I went through an
entire summer wardrobe in less than an entire month- my mother was pissed. I was mortified.


“Sorry,” he muttered blushing. I waved my hand dismissively.


“I’m just going to my house. What’s the big deal?”


“I know you’re angry with me and I don’t want this to come between us?”


I raised my eyebrow skeptically at his use of the word “us.”


“I thought we were talking about the pack?”


“I’m talking about both. Nobody wants you to leave, Leah.”


I crossed my arms across my chest and let out a long gust of air.


“Right,” I said sarcastically. “I’m sure everyone just loves having me around. I’m so pleasant with my irresistible wit and charm.”


He took a step towards me, shoving his hands in his pockets. When he looked up to meet my gaze his eyes were burning into mine. I swallowed hard willing myself to not feel the butterflies
churning in my stomach.


“I don’t mind having you around. Even after everything that has happened, Leah.”


Was he insinuating that “everything” that happened in the past was my fault? That I was still tolerable despite the past? That was rich!


“Yeah Sam, I can see how everything was really hard for you.” I snapped.


“That’s not what I meant.” He whispered. “I meant that even through all hardships I understand. So does everyone else…to an extent. They just don’t understand how it feels to be
broken hearted because it hasn’t happened to them yet.”


I could feel the lump rising up in my throat and my eyes filled with tears.


“And you…what would you know about being broken hearted, Sam?” I choked out. “I’m the one who was left out in the cold. I know now that you couldn’t help it, but that doesn’t make it any
easier. It doesn’t fill the void I drown in every time I see you with her.
Every time I hear you think of her.”


I threw my hands in the air, exasperated. “Do you have any idea how badly you hurt me?


He stared at me with his eyes wide and brimming with his own tears now. We had never talked about this so openly before. I only let him see the angry, bitter part of me, when I was in my wolf
form- nothing could get the resentment flowing easier than being constantly reminded that I was genetically pre-disposed to morph into a giant animal. But I had never let myself show the hurt behind it. I had never shown
this much vulnerability to him. Even though the tears were streaming down my
face, it felt good in a weird way.


“I can only imagine.” He murmured looking down and kicking his foot at the dirt. Then suddenly, he looked up and stared directly into my eyes. “I’m so sorry, Leah.”


I balked. This was the first time he had actually apologized to me. I had imagined this moment in my head a million times, as well as all the insults I would throw back at him in
response. But I could only manage to say,


“Thank you.”


“I should have told you this a long time ago, but I didn’t think you’d listen to me.” He shrugged.


He walked forward closing the distance between us and took my hand in his.


“Don’t leave me.” He said with more fervor this time. Then his brow furrowed. “I mean, please don’t leave the pack. We won’t stand a chance if we lose another member.” He corrected at the last minute.


My breath caught in my throat and I blinked through the tears. This was low.


“What makes you think you even have the right to ask me that?” I retorted. He dropped my hand and stepped away in response to the sudden change in my tone.


“What are you talking about?” He demanded.


“I can’t believe you! For a moment there I thought you were actually sorry. I thought that you were taking this moment to give me the apology I have been waiting forever to hear, but this
is just some ploy to get me to stay. You’re worried that I’ll leave like Seth
and Jacob, aren’t you?”


            “No…okay well yeah a little, but that isn’t why I apologized, Leah. You weren’t the only one who got hurt. Do you think I liked having to see you so upset? It broke my
heart to break yours! I hated having to go back on all my promises, but I had
no choice. I loved you…I still do, but not in the way you want it to be.”


            My mouth fell open, and I stood there gaping for a few minutes until all the anger I had promised myself was a thing of the past came rushing to the surface and bubbled
over.


            “Oh, for the love of all that is holy! Get over yourself, Sam! I can’t believe you have the audacity to even make that comparison.” I yelled. Then in a mocking tone I
added, “Your heart was broken too? Give me a break. Go sell pity somewhere
else. I’m all stocked up over here, thanks!”


            He put his hands on top of his head frustrated.


            “Don’t be ridiculous, Leah” He yelled back, but I didn’t let him finish.


            “I don’t need to go through the rejection all over again. You made it very clear the first time around!” I said acidly.


            He groaned and pulled at his hair, but he managed to keep his tone soft.


            “I’m sorry. I didn’t come here to fight with you. I could tell you were really upset, and I didn’t want you to leave the pack because of built up resentment you hold
towards me…for things that I can’t control.” He explained.


            I stepped up so that I was only a few feet away from him. He towered over me but I could feel him cringe back away from my anger.


            “Things you can’t control, huh? Like breaking the treaty with the Cullens? Or forcing a member of the pack to go along with killing someone they love? Or, even better,
making a fifteen year old boy choose between being loyal to his pack or killing his own
brother? Did you mean those things? Because I’m pretty sure those were all well
within your control.


            He winced and turned his head away from me in shame. It was a low blow, but the levy had broken and the river of rage inside rushed through me uncontrolled.


            “You were willing to put us all in danger, you made an outcast of your brothers, and you have managed to rip this pack apart. And you did it all in one afternoon...that must be some kind of record. Trust me, Sam Uley” I continued, “If I do decide to leave it won’t be over a broken heart. It will be because you failed as a leader.”


            Sam gave no response, he just stood there staring at me with an expression of hurt and disappointment. I didn’t wait for him to respond as I ducked behind the tree
and ripped off my clothes to phase. I didn’t even bother tying the cord around
my leg in my haste, electing to carry my clothes in my mouth back to my house.
As my paws hit the ground I was off, pausing momentarily to look over my
shoulder at Sam. He still stood in the same place staring after me.


            “I will fix this, Leah. I promise.” I heard his whisper but I was already gone…..


**All previous chapters are posted at: http://www.twifans.com/forum/topic/listForContributor?user=3dhl28uf... OR at: http://www.twifans.com/group/bellalovefans


 


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Replies to This Discussion

Wow! Amazing.
UHHMAZZINGG!!!!
wow she should had slap him hard in the face love it!!! i cant wait for the next chapter!!!:)
Thanks, I'm so glad you liked it! And I'm really glad that people say they are starting to like Leah. When I read the books I didn't always like her reaction to things, but I always knew that if she had a chance to tell her story she would be a very complicated person. I found her torment interesting so I decided that just for fun I'd give her a voice! Thanks for all the lovely comments- you guys are the best!

Sinead Cullen*muff* said:
Woah! That was AMAZING...
Jeesh, B! You've really out done yourself this time... That was so amazing!
Thanks to your story i'm beginning to like her more.... I kinda liked her in Eclipse but after reading THAT i'm beginning to like her a lot lot more! I understand her anger and pain more....
Thank you B! That was brilliant....
Keep up the GREAT work! Cant wait for the next chapter....
xoxo
So good, i waiting so long for this chapter.
I'm actually starting to see Leah's perspective & im starting to like her :]
WOW WOW WOW!!! Ok, so Leah wasnt my favorite character in the books.... but you have embraced everything she went through, and enlightened us as to why she was the way she was. AWESOME!! Really good job. OK, so Leah is now one of my favorites after reading this. Especially as a woman, how could you not connect to this part of her? GREAT JOB!!!
..................................... i really don;t know what to say except the fact that you have done it again, completly blown me away and suprised me with what you've wrote your amazing and have got talent xxxx
Oh wow amazing she is one tough girl...thanks u bellalove i love reading the story and can not wait for the net part!!!
OMG I love it Leah love her baby bro now I udrstand her
OMG I love it Leah love her baby bro now I udrstand her
fantastic read Bella!!
I am speechless! This was so amazing- the writing and the story line. I really feel like I connect with Leah and I respect her. She comes across as this tough chick in BD, but she is really a sweet little marshmallow inside. I really admire how she can stay so strong after all she has gone thru! Just....WOW.

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