Life and Death: Twilight Reimagined (Page 139)

“Beau,” Edythe murmured. “Can you tell them? They aren’t going to believe us.”

I’d been frozen solid this whole time. I tried to shake off the surprise as I moved to stand by Edythe.

“I don’t understand. What are they? What treaty are you talking about?” I whispered the words fast, but it was obvious from the wolves’ alert ears and watchful eyes that they were listening. Wolves that understood English? Eleanor had said Edythe was translating. Did she speak wolf?

“Beau,” Edythe said in a louder voice. “These are the Quileute wolves. You remember the story?”

“The—” I stared at the massive animals. “They’re werewolves?”

The black wolf growled louder, but the dark brown one in the back blew out a funny huff that sounded almost like a laugh.

“Not exactly,” Edythe said. “A long time ago, we made a treaty with another pack leader. They think we’ve violated it. Can you tell them how you were transformed?”

“Uh, okay…” I looked at the black wolf, who seemed to be in charge. “I’m, uh, Beau Swan—”

“She knows who you are. You met Sam once—at the beach in La Push.”

She. The cloudy human memories distracted me for a short second. I remembered the tall woman at La Push. And Jules saying that the wolves were her sisters. That her great-great-grandmother had made a treaty with the cold ones.

“Oh,” I said.

“Just explain to her what happened.”

“Right.” I looked at the wolf again, trying to picture the tall woman somehow inside it. “Uh, a few weeks ago, there was a tracker—er, a vampire tracker—who came through here. She liked the way I smelled. The Cullens told her to back off. She left, but Edythe knew she was planning to try to kill me. I went back to Phoenix to hide out till the Cullens could… well, take care of her, you know. But the tracker figured out where I was and caught up to me. It was a game to her, a game with the Cullens—I was just a pawn. But she didn’t want to just kill me. She… I guess you could say she was playing with her food. The Cullens found me before she could kill me, but she’d already bitten me. Hey—do we still have the video?” I glanced over at Edythe, who was staring at the wolves. She shook her head. I turned back to Sam. “That’s too bad. The tracker was filming the whole thing. I could have shown you exactly what happened.”

The wolves looked at each other. Edythe’s eyes were narrowed as she concentrated on what they were thinking. Suddenly the black wolf was staring at her again.

“That’s acceptable,” Edythe said. “Where?”

The black wolf huffed, and then all three were backing away from the house. When they got to the edge of the trees, they turned and ran into the forest.

The Cullens all converged on Edythe.

“What happened?” Carine asked.

“They aren’t sure what to do,” Edythe said. “They were asked to clear us out. Sam is the actual chief of the tribe, but only in secret. She’s not a direct descendant of the chief we made a treaty with. They want us to talk to the acting chief, the true great-granddaughter of the last wolf-chief.”

“But—wouldn’t that be Bonnie?” I gasped.

Edythe looked at me. “Yes. They want to meet at a neutral location so that Bonnie can see you and make the call.”

“See me? But I can’t get that close.…”

“You can do it, Beau,” Edythe said. “You’re the most rational newborn I’ve ever seen.”

“It’s true,” Carine agreed. “I’ve never seen someone adapt so easily. If I didn’t know better, I’d say you were a decade old.”

It wasn’t that I thought they were lying—just that maybe they didn’t get the magnitude of what they were proposing. “But it’s Bonnie. She’s my dad’s best friend. What if I hurt her?”

“We’ll be there,” Eleanor said. “We won’t let you do anything stupid.”

“Actually…,” Edythe said.

Eleanor looked at her, shocked.

“They asked that we bring no more than their pack—only three. I already agreed. Beau has to be one, I have to be one, and the other needs to be Carine.”

It was clear Eleanor was hurt.

“Is that safe?” Earnest asked.

Edythe shrugged. “It’s not an ambush.”

“Or they hadn’t decided to make it one. Not yet,” Jessamine said.

She was standing protectively by Archie, and there was something wrong with him. He looked a little dazed.

“Archie?” I asked. I’d never seen him look like… like he was behind things instead of ahead of them.

“I didn’t see them,” he whispered. “I didn’t know they were coming. I can’t see now—I can’t see this meeting. It’s like it doesn’t exist.”

I could see that this was news only to me. The others had heard it before we’d arrived, and Edythe had already picked it out of his head.

“What does that mean?” I asked.

“We don’t know,” Edythe answered sharply. “And we don’t have time to figure it out now. We want to be there when they arrive. We don’t want them to have a chance to change their minds.”

“It will be fine,” Carine said to the others, her eyes on Earnest. “The wolves are just trying to protect the people here. They’re heroes, not villains.”


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