Home > Eclipse (Twilight #3)(13)

Eclipse (Twilight #3)(13)
Author: Stephenie Meyer

Edward was long gone and he wouldn't be back until Charlie was asleep - he was probably out hunting or something to pass the time - so I was in no hurry to undress for bed. I wasn't in the mood to be alone, but I certainly wasn't going to go back downstairs to hang out with my Dad, just in case he thought of some topic of sex education that he hadn't touched on before; I shuddered.

So, thanks to Charlie, I was wound up and anxious. My homework was done and I didn't feel mellow enough for reading or just listening to music. I considered calling Renée with the news of my visit, but then I realized that it was three hours later in Florida, and she would be asleep.

I could call Angela, I supposed.

But suddenly I knew that it wasn't Angela that I wanted to talk to. That I needed to talk to.

I stared at the blank black window, biting my lip. I don't know how long I stood there weighing the pros against the cons - doing the right thing by Jacob, seeing my closest friend again, being a good person, versus making Edward furious with me. Ten minutes maybe. Long enough to decide that the pros were valid while the cons were not. Edward was only concerned about my safety, and I knew that there was really no problem on that count.

The phone wasn't any help; Jacob had refused to answer my phone calls since Edward's return. Besides, I needed to see him - see him smiling again the way he used to. I needed to replace that awful last memory of his face warped and twisted by pain if I was ever going to have any peace of mind.

I had an hour probably. I could make a quick run down to La Push and be back before Edward realized I had gone. It was past my curfew, but would Charlie really care about that when Edward wasn't involved? One way to find out.

I grabbed my jacket and shoved my arms through the sleeves as I ran down the stairs.

Charlie looked up from the game, instantly suspicious.

"You care if I go see Jake tonight?" I asked breathlessly. "I won't stay long."

As soon as I said Jake's name, Charlie's expression relaxed into a smug smile. He didn't seem surprised at all that his lecture had taken effect so quickly. "Sure, kid. No problem. Stay as long as you like."

"Thanks, Dad," I said as I darted out the door.

Like any fugitive, I couldn't help looking over my shoulder a few times while I jogged to my truck, but the night was so black that there really was no point. I had to feel my way along the side of the truck to the handle.

My eyes were just beginning to adjust as I shoved my keys in the ignition. I twisted them hard to the left, but instead of roaring deafeningly to life, the engine just clicked. I tried it again with the same results.

And then a small motion in my peripheral vision made me jump.

"Gah!" I gasped in shock when I saw that I was not alone in the cab.

Edward sat very still, a faint bright spot in the darkness, only his hands moving as he turned a mysterious black object around and around. He stared at the object as he spoke.

"Alice called," he murmured.

Alice! Damn. I'd forgotten to account for her in my plans. He must have her watching me.

"She got nervous when your future rather abruptly disappeared five minutes ago."

My eyes, already wide with surprise, popped wider.

"Because she can't see the wolves, you know," he explained in the same low murmur. "Had you forgotten that? When you decide to mingle your fate with theirs, you disappear, too. You couldn't know that part, I realize that. But can you understand why that might make me a little . . . anxious? Alice saw you disappear, and she couldn't even tell if you'd come home or not. Your future got lost, just like theirs.

"We're not sure why this is. Some natural defense they're born with?" He spoke as if he were talking to himself now, still looking at the piece of my truck's engine as he twirled it in his hands. "That doesn't seem entirely likely, since I haven't had any trouble reading their thoughts. The Blacks' at least. Carlisle theorizes that it's because their lives are so ruled by their transformations. It's more an involuntary reaction than a decision. Utterly unpredictable, and it changes everything about them. In that instant when they shift from one form to the other, they don't really even exist. The future can't hold them. . . ."

I listened to his musing in stony silence.

"I'll put your car back together in time for school, in case you'd like to drive yourself," he assured me after a minute.

With my lips mashed together, I retrieved my keys and stiffly climbed out of the truck.

"Shut your window if you want me to stay away tonight. I'll understand," he whispered just before I slammed the door.

I stomped into the house, slamming that door, too.

"What's wrong?" Charlie demanded from the couch.

"Truck won't start," I growled.

"Want me to look at it?"

"No. I'll try it in the morning."

"Want to use my car?"

I wasn't supposed to drive his police cruiser. Charlie must be really desperate to get me to La Push. Nearly as desperate as I was.

"No. I'm tired," I grumbled. "'Night."

I stamped my way up the stairs, and went straight to my window. I shoved the metal frame roughly - it crashed shut and the glass trembled.

I stared at the shivering black glass for a long moment, until it was still. Then I sighed, and opened the window as wide as it would go.

Chapter 3. MOTIVES

THE SUN WAS SO DEEPLY BURIED BEHIND THE CLOUDS that there was no way to tell if it had set or not. After the long flight - chasing the sun westward so that it seemed unmoving in the sky - it was especially disorienting; time seemed oddly variable. It took me by surprise when the forest gave way to the first buildings, signaling that we were nearly home.

"You've been very quiet," Edward observed. "Did the plane make you sick?"

"No, I'm okay."

"Are you sad to leave?"

"More relieved than sad, I think."

He raised one eyebrow at me. I knew it was useless and - much as I hated to admit it - unnecessary to ask him to keep his eyes on the road.

"Renée is so much more . . . perceptive than Charlie in some ways. It was making me jumpy."

Edward laughed. "Your mother has a very interesting mind. Almost childlike, but very insightful. She sees things differently than other people."

Insightful. It was a good description of my mother - when she was paying attention. Most of the time Renée was so bewildered by her own life that she didn't notice much else. But this weekend she'd been paying plenty of attention to me.

   
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