The battle seemed to be going well. It actually looked like we were winning. What with the help from the Quileute wolves, things were going in our favor. But I didn’t see Victoria anywhere. I wasn’t too worried though. Jacob and Edward would make sure she was safe. It was the only thing they could agree upon. They both loved Bella.
Esme was fighting rather nicely. Well, she was doing her best. I could see that she hadn’t wanted to kill, more even than I did. I knew the value of proper defense, but Esme just didn’t like killing, no matter what the reason.
Emmett and Jasper were having a great time. I think they had a contest going to see who could kill the most. They probably had a bet going, heh heh. I shouldn’t be laughing at a time so serious, but it just seems that we will win! With no death to anyone, not even any of the wolves. There will be some wounds, true, but nothing fatal. So I hope.
I wonder if Alice is in on the bet with Emmett and Jasper. She seems distracted….Probably trying to focus on her opponent’s next move AND making sure that Bella and Edward are safe. But she can’t see Bella. Jacob is with her. That must be her true distraction. She’s frustrated by her limited power.
Esme is worried to. While she is trying to focus on killing the rival Vampires, her thoughts are truly elsewhere. She wonders if everyone in our family will make it out alive. I can see it in her face. There was no reassurance from Alice before the battle. The wolves were in our future, so Alice was blind to the outcome.
I fought by Esme’s side. We helped each other, playing off each other’s movement and taking out the Vampires one at a time. We were just finishing off the last few that were near us, when suddenly, Tom showed up. Out of nowhere, he started attacking one of the Vampires nearest to us. Esme and I kept on fighting.
“Tom, what are you doing here?!”
“I’m here to help you!” He replied.
“But why?” I was so bewildered by his appearance and still distracted by the battle that I wasn’t sure what to say.
“Fight now, ask later!” And then he was gone. I don’t know where he went. Well, if Tom turned on us, we could certainly take down one more Vampire, even an experienced one.

Finally, the battle was over. We had won. Just as Jasper and Emmett were throwing the last Vampires onto the fire, Alice showed up. Her face was concerned, which worried me until I looked at her arms. She was holding a girl, about sixteen or so. She was trembling, obviously terrified. She was somehow the last survivor of a battle that was never hers to fight.
I took the young girl from Alice, and as I did so she mouthed the words “help her”. I looked down at her small face. She was too young to be turned. Far too young. Victoria was ruthless. She used whoever she could find. Whoever was vulnerable, susceptible. It was ruthless.
“Hello there.” I said to the face that had buried itself into my chest. “I’m Carlisle.” She stopped her shaking, but other than that she didn’t move. “We’re not going to hurt you. If you cooperate, we’ll let you go.” She looked up at me then, with her sweet eyes, red though they were. I smiled at her.
“What’s you name?” I asked her. “Do you know it?”
“Y-y-yes.” She said slowly. “I-I’m Bree. Why-why did you kill everyone? Victoria-she said we would win. That….you wouldn’t stand a chance….She was sure….”
“I can probably guess just what Victoria has told you. And I can also tell you that she’s lied. Did she tell you that this is the way all Vampires live. Not so. Take a look at my eyes.”
She stared up at me, taking in my features.
“Gold.” She said. “How-”
“There is another way. You don’t always have to fight for territory, for blood. My coven—we’re more like a family. A real family. We don’t eat humans-”
“Not ever?” Her eyes were wide and curious. She was truly in the dark about exactly how being a Vampire worked.
“No, never. Not if we can help it. Sometimes we slip up. But that only happens once in a great great while. I can see you wonder what we do eat. We eat animals. And you can change, be like us, if you want. You could join our family, be apart of who we are.”
Suddenly Jasper came as if from nowhere. He must have been listening the whole time.
“No way Carlisle! No way is she joining us. It’s not safe. I’ve seen newborns, I know how they are, what they’re like. I was once that way. I know what she’s going through, how much the thirst controls her life!”
“But Jasper, you were able to change.”
“Not overnight. And you know I still struggle, a lot.”
“But you were like that for years. It’s hard to break the habit, Jasper. We all know your struggles. But she hasn’t had the time to grow accustomed to the life you had yet. This was her first, and hopefully her last, battle.”
“I still don’t like it Carlisle. What if---what if she went somewhere, just for awhile, until she’s grown a little. Gotten used to the diet. With Bella around all of us so often, I don’t think a newborn is wise or safe, no matter how under control she seems to be. What if she went with, say, oh, Tom?”
“Tom?” I thought about this in my head. Jasper was right, it wasn’t safe with Bella around. Tom could actually be good for Bree, maybe. He had proven himself in the battle, but one good turn doesn’t always deserve another. Still, it seemed the only way right now.
“Alright.” I answered. “But if Bella wasn’t here she would stay with us.” I turned to Bella, who was standing near Edward. “It’s for your safety. Please don’t try to argue, or say you’ll stay away. Edward can’t live without you. He needs you. And Bree needs to learn a few things anyway before living in Forks. Everyone is at risk with a newborn around. It’s not your fault Bree. It’s hard to control yourself at first. We all had to go through it, we all know and understand.”
I set Bree on the ground. No sooner had I done that than she lunged toward Edward and Bella. It was obvious which one her target was. But Edward was quick. He knew what she was going to do. He grabbed her and  held her tightly to his chest while she thrashed around.
“How. Do. You. Stand. It?!” She managed to gasp out.
“Practice Bree. Lots of practice. Now I think it’s time that you went with Tom. NOW.”
Tom leaped from one of the trees onto the ground, right near Edward and Bree. He took the struggling Bree for Edward.
“I’ll take good care of her Carlisle.”

“I truly hope so. Now, you need to get out of Washington, quickly. The Volturi will likely be coming to check with us soon and make sure things haven’t gotten out of hand. They won’t like a survivor. Now go Tom! Go!”
And then he was gone. He was running through the trees at top speed with Bree still held tightly to him.
“I hope he teaches her the right way.”
“So do I Carlisle.” Edward said. “She seemed nice. And, she was cooperative. She’s just driven by her thirst. It’s difficult for her. But hopefully it won’t always be.”
“That’s what I hope too Edward. I hope he brings her back safe.”

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