I was running. Running through a dark forest, the canopy of leaves above blocking out any moonlight from reaching me. The darkness did not scare me but it scared my prey. He was wandering through the sinister trees . He was lost, poor human. Didn’t he know better than to walk through the forest at night? Bad things lived in the shadows of the trees.
I stop running and hide behind a tree, not ten feet from my victim. I could see him clearly even though there was no light. He was standing and looking around. He even turned in a circle on the spot. It was evident he was lost. I stepped out from behind the tree, standing directly behind him. I watched him carefully, willing him to continue walking. But he didn’t. He turned around and saw me. His eyes, a chocolate brown colour, lit up when he recognised me.
“I’m so glad you’re here. I’m totally lost, can you believe that? I don’t know where I am. Do you remember how you got here? We can go back the way you came. I’m so silly, me.”
I tilted my head to the side, scrutinising him. What would be the best way to kill him without him making a noise? I didn’t want to have to eat and run.
His eyes showed fear first. He didn’t understand. Why wasn’t I answering him? Going over to him and telling him how stupid he was for getting lost? Leading him back out of the forest to the safety of home?
But when I didn’t move and continued to stare at him, he got frightened. He realised the change in me too late. He tried to run but I was too fast for him. My teeth sunk into his neck and warm blood flowed into my waiting mouth. He collapsed to the ground, crying out, as his blood poured profusely from his neck and soothed my burning thirst. His blood was too fast for me. Most of it I could drink but some of it overflowed and spilled down my chin. He was silent now. Not a sound escaped from him. That was good; I preferred to eat in silence.
Edward’s arms were around me instantaneously, before I had even opened my eyes. He pulled me onto his lap and crushed me to his chest. I still hadn’t opened my eyes. I was pondering this vision while lying close to Edward.
I hadn’t had this vision for weeks. I thought that maybe it wasn’t going to happen anymore. But it seemed I was wrong. Charlie was still in danger and still from a vampire he knew. He didn’t know any vampires that would want to kill him.
“It’s okay,” Edward spoke low and gentle. “Don’t worry. He’s fine.”
Edward thought I was panicking. I wasn’t. I was more angry than worried. I was angry because I didn’t know who the hell was going to kill my father. No vampire we knew would ever kill a human.
I opened my eyes and looked at Edward.
“I’m fine,” I told him. “I’m not panicking, I’m not worrying, I’m okay.”
Edward looked shocked for half a second but quickly recovered and smiled down at me. Of course he would be shocked. Since when did I had a vision of someone’s death and not panic?
He still held me close though and I didn’t complain. Neither did the baby.
“What do you think we’re having?” he asked me, his hand sliding down to my stomach where he was greeted with a nudge. He was distracting me.
“I don’t know,” I replied. “Whatever the sex is we both know it loves you.”
“The baby loves you too,” Edward said, kissing my forehead.
“I know,” I said, smiling as I felt another nudge. I knew the nudge was for me even though Edward’s hand was still on my stomach.
“Do you think I will be able to hear the baby’s thoughts?”
Hear the baby’s thoughts? I didn’t know unborn babies thought much.
“I don’t know,” I answered. “I mean, do unborn babies think?”
“Everyone thinks,” he said.
“Yes but not until their brain develops.”
“Well, our baby is an exception. It must have a brain to know who I am when it can’t see me and to protect me like that.”
“That makes sense,” I said. “Well, you hear my thoughts so I don’t think you’ll have any trouble hearing the baby’s.”
“I couldn’t hear your thoughts at first though. There was a barrier around your mind.”
That awful thing. I remembered Charlie removing the barrier from my mind and the pain it caused me. Did my baby have that too? It must, it was half Azdi. Would I have to break the barrier on my baby’s mind? I didn’t know how to do that. What if I did it wrong and killed my child?
Edward stroked my hair, a silent way of saying ‘don’t worry’. It was easier said than done. Now my mind was opening up to all the other dangers I would have to protect my child from. All those supernatural creatures that threatened the world posed a risk to my baby. I would have to deal with that.
“You are not dealing with anything,” Edward’s voice was filled with fear.
“Why?” I asked him. “It’s what I’m supposed to do.”
“I’m supposed to drink human blood but you don’t see me doing it.” Edward slipped me off his lap and walked over to the window. He stood with his back to me, staring out at the forest.
I kneeled on the bed, watching him. I didn’t understand. Why was he so upset? This was my purpose. This was what I was supposed to do, protecting everyone from the supernatural beasts.
“You never understand,” he said, quietly. “You never do.”
“I’m sorry about that,” I said, feeling angry. “I’m sorry I’ve not been around for nearly a century to know almost everything.”
“That’s not what I’m getting at, Kayla. I’m not insulting your intelligence.”
He sighed heavily and turned to face me. He didn’t try to hide his emotions. He let me see exactly how he was feeling and it hurt me to see him like that. He looked tortured, as if someone was causing him excruciating pain. I wanted to go over to him and cradle him in my arms but he held up a hand.
“Do you know how many times I’ve almost lost you?” he asked me. “Do you know how many times I’ve wondered if I would ever see you again?”
“I’m guessing quite a lot?”
“Yes. So many times that I’ve began to wonder if it was me. If I was the cause of it all.”
“But you’re not!” I protested. I shot off the bed and grabbed his hand. “You’re not Edward. Don’t think like that.”
If he was thinking like that he would leave me in a bid to protect me. He didn’t understand that he was the reason I was still living. Well, he was now one of the reasons why I was still living, the baby the other. He couldn’t leave me.
“I’m not going to leave you,” he said, kissing my hand. “I know that it isn’t me.”
“Good then,” I replied, relieved.
“It’s you,” he said. “You are the reason why you almost die every time you set foot outside.”
“Me?” I looked at him incredulous. It wasn’t like I had a neon sign above my head that said ‘Looking for immediate death. Who fancies killing me?’
“Yes. You and your heritage. Azdis attract death like a light attracts moths.”
He gazed down at me with his tortured eyes and I suddenly didn’t understand. I didn’t know what it was like to worry about a little fragile human. I didn’t have to worry about never seeing Edward again but I was always 99% sure he would be okay because he was a vampire. He was basically invincible. But me? I wasn’t. I would never be completely invincible. My skin wouldn’t be able to snap a dagger when someone tried to stab me or stop bullets. I wasn’t immune from diseases. I was still fragile though I would live for eternity.
“I’m sorry,” I said. “But I can’t ignore it. I’m going to have to live up to my heritage one day. Now there’s nothing stopping me. I have a reason now.”
“What reason is that?”
“The baby. I have to protect it from anything that might try to harm our child.”
“And you? What about anything that might try to harm you?”
“I don’t need protection. I’m not the priority here.”
Edward threw up his hands in frustration and turned away from me. His hands gripped onto the windowsill and I knew he was angry at me.
“Why do you have this attitude?” he said, his voice was shaking. “You act like such a martyr, Kayla. It’s unreal.”
“I’m not acting like a martyr, Edward, and you act the same way.”
“I’m not throwing my life away for a city of people I hardly know.”
“I’m not throwing my life away if that’s what you think. I’m protecting our child.”
“You don’t have to protect the baby by going out looking for death. You can do it by making sure you’re alive.”
“I do not go out looking for death!” I threw my hands up in frustration. I turned away from Edward, not that it made much difference since he wasn’t looking at me anyway.
Did I go out looking for death? Or did it find it me? I knew Edward was right. I wouldn’t be doing the baby much good if I was out hunting whatever posed a threat but just sitting in all day every day for eternity didn’t seem like a good thing either. I would get bored eventually. I couldn’t spend all my time in doors. I want to do something, anything, and well, being an Azdi was in my blood.
I want to do it.
“And your own life yet again means nothing to you!”
I could feel Edward’s cool breath on the back of my neck. I felt his hands wind gently around my waist and he pulled me close to him, as if this would stop me from doing anything he considered irrational.
“It’s not that,” I said. “It’s not like I want to die. I just want to do something, you know? I want to help.”
He didn’t say anything. I felt his cold lips on my neck, a light kiss that burned my skin. I closed my eyes, letting him turn me around in his arms and press his lips against mine. I felt a nudge and Edward moved away from me just a little. He must be too close against my body and the baby was getting uncomfortable. He didn’t stop kissing me though. The baby nudged again. Edward moved away again but he wasn’t close to the baby at all. Nothing was near the baby but air. I felt another nudge and then another and in exasperation I let go of Edward and backed away from until we were on opposite ends of the room.
“Are you happy now?” I said to my unborn baby. “Is that enough room for you? Nothing is touching you now.”
I felt another nudge, more urgent this time.
“Is there something wrong?” Edward asked worriedly. He walked over to me, his face set in concern. His hand touched my stomach and the nudges became faster and even more desperate.
“I don’t know,” I said. “I don’t think there’s anything wrong. I don’t feel anything wrong, I would if there was.”
“Maybe the baby is just restless,” Edward suggested. “We were arguing.”
NUDGE. NUDGE. NUDGE.
“Yes we were,” I said, and then it hit me. I knew why the baby was nudging so much. The nudging stopped immediately and I rounded on my husband.
“You were distracting me!” I pointed a finger at Edward. “You dirty vampire!”
Edward grinned. He didn’t look shameful or embarrassed. He just gazed at me those smouldering golden eyes of his and I felt my willpower slipping. Before I knew it I was back in his arms, kissing him again.
I slapped his chest as I felt another nudge from the baby.
“I am not going to get away with anything, am I?” he said, as I stepped away from him again.
“Nope,” I replied, stroking my stomach adoringly. I felt bigger. The baby had grown.
I walked past Edward to my wardrobe and opened the door, looking in the mirror that hung on the inside of the door. I lifted up my top and looked at my stomach. Yup. I had gotten bigger. The baby was growing fast.
“I’m scared,” I said, as Edward came up behind me. His hands rested on my bare stomach and was greeted by a little nudge. “This is happening too fast.”
Soon, childbirth would be upon me and then what would I do? I hadn’t even thought about what I would do when I started having contractions. Do I have a homebirth? Well, I would have to it’s not like the baby could be born in hospital. Who would be my midwife? Who would deliver the baby? Where would the baby go? It wasn’t like we had a nursery all set out. We didn’t even know we could have children.
So many questions and none of which I could answer.
“Stop worrying,” Edward chuckled. “You should know by now that Alice and Rosalie are already planning everything. They were picking out baby clothes when I went to change earlier.”
I rolled my eyes, my fear disappearing. I should have known Alice and Rosalie would be taking over everything, especially Rosalie. She would be overjoyed at the thought of a baby.
“Have you thought of anything for the baby?” I asked Edward. “You said you’ve done some thinking.”
“I have thought of quite a lot of things,” he replied, kissing my cheek. “Like names, for instance.”
“Let’s hear them then.”
“For a boy, I was thinking Gregory or Matthew or Anthony or Christopher or-”
I cut him off with a laugh. I could see an endless list of names in his mind, all of them male. How long was the list of names for a girl?
“I have done quite a lot of thinking,” he said, grinning. “What about you? Any names for a girl?”
I shook my head.
“I haven’t thought of any names yet.”
Should I be thinking of names? I had only found out I was pregnant, it seemed a little soon to be thinking about all of this. But the baby was growing at a faster rate than normal and would be here in a matter of weeks probably. I had to start thinking about all of this.
“You have some time before the birth,” Edward assured me. “Don’t stress about it. Leave it all to us.”
“I leave everything to you,” I sighed. “I think I may need to start taking a hold of my life.”
Edward kissed the top of my head.
“You’ve had a troubling time these past weeks. You need to take a break, rest up.”
I cast my eyes down. Troubling times. I’d had a death sentence dangling above my head like a guillotine and I was fine. I knock that guillotine down, I save my own neck, and everything feels wrong to me. The world was right with the guillotine over me, it was normal. With it gone…
Trying to spare me feeling pain, Edward wrapped his arms around me as if his cold embrace could protect me. It could, but only from physical harm, not my thoughts or my mind. Nothing could protect me from that.
Someone commented on a previous chapter that I am not spelling my words 'properly', as in the American spelling. I would like to remind you all that I live in the UK and we do spell words differently, we have to be awkward about that lol. But I am not changing my spellings for you. For one, it would be too difficult and two Kayla is English and so it should be written in an English way.
I am not English myself I am in fact Scottish I just live in England so you should all be thankful I'm not writing in my Scottish dialect. You would all be screwed then trying to read this story lmao.
So I apologise to my American readers but hopefully you will all understand and this will not stop you in reading my fanfiction.
Love you all <3