Chapter 6

Playlist selection: Wicked Woman by Coven

Edward POV

"Hey, Mom!" I yank the minivan's door open, climbing into the passenger seat. "Where's Dad?"

"He's running a few minutes late, so we're going to meet him at the house."


"Actually, I need to pick up a few more snacks for Carrumba, so we're going to run to the grocery store on the way."

I nod and shove my backpack to the floorboard as she pulls out of the school's parking lot. The minivan is loaded down with our camping gear, or what my mother considers camping gear; a portable hammock, lounge chairs, fashion magazines, and a handful of DVDs. Our cabin is fully furnished; complete with two bedrooms, equipped kitchen, and basic satellite service. Mom can't 'camp' without a television. Give Dad and me a couple of fishing poles and two sleeping bags, and we're good.

Several moments later, we pull into the shopping plaza and she parks the car at the far end of the lot. I give her a confused look, silently asking why the hell we parked out in B-F-E when there are plenty of open spaces closer to the store.

Answering my silent question, she says, "I don't want anyone to break into the car and steal our stuff, Edward."

I scoff and shake my head. She's a fucking nut-job sometimes. Who would want to steal our crap?

Once inside, Mom grabs a hand basket and turns toward the produce section.

"Oh, I almost forgot! Your dad wants to take some cereal with us. Can you grab him a box, and I'll grab the fruit and veggies?"

"Yeah, okay, sure. I'll just meet you back here at the check outs in a couple minutes."

She smiles and scurries over to the opposite side of the store as I head in the other direction, scavenging for breakfast items.

I haven't eaten cereal in years. Breakfast consists of eggs and bacon or sausage, maybe a few pancakes, if Bella's around. But cereal is for kids and grandparents. I grimace as I stroll down the aisle, fingering boxes of all the various kinds; plain flakes, toasted oats, fruity wheels... Jesus! Why couldn't there be one box of cereal, dressed in nondescript, white cardboard with black lettering, stamped with ACME on the label? Shit! I don't know what the hell kind of cereal my dad eats. I snag the first box of fiber enhanced squares and snicker at all the 'old man' comments I can tease him with. Turning to head back to the check outs, a familiar, childhood character catches my eye. Mom used to buy it all the time, and I remember seeing Dad sneak a few bowls in once in a while, so I know he'll enjoy it. I toss the box of wheaty oats back onto the shelf, and snatch up the kids' cereal.

Mom is already in line at the check out, placing her bags of produce on the conveyor belt. "Hey, hon. What did you find?" She takes the cereal box from me and glances at the cartoon face on the box.

"Count Chocula?" She looks at me incredulously, then bursts into a loud guffaw.

"What?" I chuckle along with her. "You guys love vampires."

"Very funny, Edward," she chides and pats my hand condescendingly. "Your father will enjoy that. Oh! Speaking of vampires, have you seen this?"

She passes me a black book with a picture of arms and fruit on the cover. "What's this? Another trashy romance novel?"

Smacking my arm lightly, she steals the book from my grip, handing it to the checkout girl. "No, it's not a trashy romance novel, Edward. It's about a vampire and his struggles to not kill his human girlfriend. It's the hottest book out there nowadays. It's called Tonight. Haven't you heard of it?"

I shake my head 'no'.

"Well, Bella's probably heard of it. Maybe I'll lend it to her when I'm done reading."

"Whatever, Mom." I roll my eyes and take the plastic bag of groceries, heading toward the exit door. Women...

At home, I unload the food onto the kitchen counter so Mom can pilfer through the items and pack them into the ice chest. I grab my backpack and head toward the stairs. A flash of sunlight is reflected off a passing car's windshield and through the living room. "Mom, Dad's home!" I yell, watching as his cruiser pulls into the driveway.

I take the stairs two at a time and plow through my bedroom door, tossing my backpack into the corner unceremoniously. I grimace as I survey my room, cursing myself for being such a fucking slob. Bella will have a field day with this mess. A twinge of guilt bubbles inside me, knowing once she sees the chaos in here, she'll spend all weekend cleaning it. I can't have that. She should be partying her ass off this weekend at someone's graduation party, not washing my underwear.

Stepping over several articles of dirty clothes, I make my way toward my desk and tear out a page from an old spiral notebook. Scribbling a quick note for Bella, I tack it to the mirror above my dresser and turn to meet my parents downstairs.

As I reach the door, I stop as I get a sense that I've left something important behind for this trip. I make a quick, mental inventory of my packed supplies; solar lantern, fishing poles, my latest copy of American Entomologist magazine, and my favorite 'spank-bank' picture of Bella in a bikini from our trip to Florida last summer. Yep... everything I need is packed.

I glance around my room, looking for anything that I may have missed. When my eyes fall upon my mirror, I smile at my love note.

I know you miss me.
Quit cleaning!!
See you Sunday.

I trip over my old gym shoes as I stumble toward the dresser. Placing a kiss to my fingertips, I reach my hand toward the paper and press my fingers to the message, transferring my love to my little BellaButterfly.

Leaving my room, I plunder down the stairs and spend a few moments with Carrumba, rehearsing some new words I've been teaching her.

Unlatching the door to her cage, I reach into the opening and raise my hand for her to climb onto. I bring her out and place a quick peck to her beak as she mimics the sound of a chaste kiss. She ruffles her bright green feathers and yawns widely.



"C'mon... BEL-LA. BEL-LA." She quirks her head at me, then leans down to pull on a loose string on my shirt sleeve.


"Alright, Edward. Let's get a move on! I want to get there before dark," Dad yells from the kitchen as he's hauling the ice chest out to the minivan.

"Yeah, okay. I'm coming." I give Carrumba a quick smooch on her beak again, tell her to be a good girl for Bella this weekend, and place her back in her cage. I give her a brief wave as I exit the living room, heading into the garage.

"BUH-BYE!" she squawks.


A few hours into the drive, we pull off the highway and into a truck stop. Mom rushes inside to use the facilities, Dad pumps the gas, and I decide to send Bella a little text message, just a tiny reminder that I love her and I'll miss her. Not that there's a chance in Hell that she'd ever forget me, or vice versa. We'll never be apart anyway, so it's a moot point.

A moment later, she replies with a snarky comment, telling me she doesn't miss me, but I know she does. She always tells me how lonely she is when we're apart. I counter her text with another sappy, lovey-dovey one, imagining the sparkle in her eyes and the way she bites her lower lip to prevent her wide grin from spreading. She's so beautiful when she smiles.

My parents pile back into the car, and we set out onto the highway again. I send Bella one last text before I lose cell phone service, telling her to have fun this weekend and that I'll see her on Sunday. I kiss the picture of her on the screen of my phone before I power down and slide it into my dufflebag.

Just before sunset, we arrive at the ranger's station, and Dad checks us in. He chats with one of the guys at the desk for a moment or two before we are back on the road, heading toward the cabin.

We pull up in front of the rustic-looking cottage and Mom hops out, making a beeline for the front door. She makes quick work of opening all the windows and doors, airing out the place, while Dad and I bring in our luggage and supplies.

Mom directs us with a wave of her hand as she holds the screen door open. "Just put the food cooler in the kitchen, guys. I'll work on putting stuff away and get started on dinner."

"Awesome! I'm starved. What are we having?" I smile and rub my belly eagerly.

"Well, Charlie gave us a couple of packages of ground bear meat, so I thought I'd make some chili?" She vollies a look between my father and I, gauging our reaction.

I shrug, not really caring what we eat. "That's fine. Just let me know when it's ready."

I turn and drag my dufflebag toward my room and toss it on the bed. Carefully opening the drawers to the dresser, I keep a watchful eye for any bugs hiding out inside. Not that I mind the bugs at all, but I just don't want to unload my underwear on top of a venomous scorpion. I can't have one of those things attacking my junk. Seeing that the coast is clear, I fill the drawers with my clothes and toss the empty bag in the closet. Remembering my picture of Bella stuffed inside my AE magazine, I flip through it's colorful pages quickly and retrieve the photo, smiling as I notice it was resting on an advertisement for an entomology convention in Albuquerque. I toss the magazine onto the bed to read later, and stuff Bella's picture under my pillow to, err, look at tonight.

Readjusting my crotch, I turn off the light to my bedroom and amble out to help Mom in the kitchen.


Thursday morning, I stir awake to the alluring aroma of bacon and the sound of someone clanking pans in the kitchen. I flop over onto my stomach, covering my head with the pillow to block out the early morning sun as it filters in through my window, but I leave a little gap for my nose to relish the smell of pan-fried pork. YUM! A few moments later, my stomach growls and I shrug out of the blankets, and stretch like a cat. I glance in the mirror, running a hand through my hair and grimacing at the nightmare of locks on top of my head. Grabbing a pair of basketball shorts and tank top, I shuffle out of my room and into the bathroom down the hall to take care of my morning ritual.

Freshly showered and hungry as a motherfucker, I make my way to the kitchen and find Dad sitting at the table alone.

"Hey, Dad."

He quickly glances up from his latest issue of Field & Stream and back down, turning the page. "Morning."

I stack my plate with bacon, scrambled eggs, and toast, and plop down in the seat across from my father. Halfway through my breakfast, Dad asks if I want to join him fishing this morning. I agree, of course, anxious to try out my new fishing equipment my parents got me for graduation.

After breakfast, we fill a bag with sandwiches, drinks, and Bella's fuckawesome cookies, and pack up the minivan. We send a quick wave to my mother, lounging in her hammock under the shade of the trees, reading her vampire-nonsense novel, as we speed down the rocky, dirt path toward the lake.

The windows are open, and the wind is gusting through my hair, making it more of a disaster zone. I don't give a shit. It's just me and my dad - the boys club, as we used to call the times he and I would hang out alone. These are the times that I can belch and scratch myself as needed and not have to say 'excuse me' or try to be discreet when I have to take a piss. I can just turn my back and whiz. We talk about manly stuff like cars and fishing, or guns and sports; none of the emotional lovey-dovey stuff. Not that I hate the sweet romantic things, not at all. I love doing that shit with Bella, but it's more like when a woman says she just needs a 'girl's day' with her friends. Well, this is a 'guy's day', and I'm fucking stoked.

Dad pulls into the open space near the lake, and we unload the back of the van, sprawling our supplies over the tiny beach. As we prep our lines to cast out into the water, my dad suddenly grows a vagina.


"Yeah, Dad?" I move further toward the shore, finagling with the pole's reel.

"I just wanted to tell you how proud your mother and I are of you."

I whip my head around to look at him as if he's just admitted he's pregnant. "Uh, thanks?" For some reason, my response to his praise comes out in the form of a question.

"You have grown into a very smart, caring, and compassionate young man, son."

I swallow thickly. Edward A. Masen Senior is not the type of man to get all soft and heartfelt for no reason.

He continues, "And I hope you continue to grow and become the strong, responsible, and loving husband that Bella will need you to be."

"Oh, Dad! You're not going to give me the 'birds and the bees' talk again, are you?" I roll my eyes at him, silently begging for him to drop the discussion.

"No, no. I just wanted to tell you that I love you very much, and I am honored to be your father, Edward."

Well, shit. What does one say to that?

"I, uhh... I mean, umm, thanks, Dad. That really means a lot." I stare at him in shock, or disbelief, or confusion... I don't know. He's never been the kind of guy to give a sentimental speech. Honestly, I'm in awe of what just happened. Fuck! I hope he's not about to drop a bomb on me. "Uhh, Dad? Is everything okay?"

"Yeah, everything is fine. I just thought that I should tell my son how I feel, to let you know how much of a wonderful man you've grown up to be."

I nod my head, acknowledging all that he's saying, but still a little weirded out about the entire conversation. After a moment of testing the line on the fishing pole and mulling over all the things he's said, I peer over my shoulder at him, watching as he situates his lounge chair in the sand. I put my pole down on the beach and touch his shoulder as he turns to face me.

"Thanks, Dad. I love you, too." I wrap my arms around my father's shoulders in a man-like hug, clapping him a few times on the back.

Seconds later, once the hug-fest is over and our vags have disintegrated, I snatch my pole from the ground, press the release lever, and cast the lure far out into the lake. Now, let the boy's day begin... bring on the fish!


On Friday, I spend the morning hiking the trails above the cabin, searching for spruce aphids or loopers, insects that are blamed for the destruction of the beautiful fir trees of the White Mountains. Wandering off the cleared paths, I scrounge the underbrush of the forest; uprooting fallen logs, over turning stones, and stabbing at loose soil clumps in the earth. Not satisfied with my discovery of a small mound of termites and a few black widow spiders, I continue my quest, finally managing to snaggle two bark beetles and an elusive, wooly aphid. I was excited as hell about that last one.

The sudden squeal of the two-way radio attached to my hip causes me to trip and stumble against a pine tree, and I drop one of my specimen cups.


Thankfully, the lid was on securely and I didn't lose my tiny, winged prisoner.

I snap the walkie-talkie from my waistband and mash the button, screaming into the mic, "Jesus! You scared the crap out of me, Mom! Quit hitting the whistle and just talk into it instead, okay?" Fucking-A!

"Sorry, sweetheart. I didn't mean to startle you. I just wondered if you were on your way back for lunch? Your father wants to go into town and get a chicken salad sandwich from the deli, and wondered if you want one too. Over."

I roll my eyes at the absurdity of her questioning me about chicken salad. I fucking hate that mushy shit.

"No, Mom. I'll just make a sandwich with the cold cuts you brought to the cabin, alright?"

"Okay, dear. So, are you on your way back yet? Over."

I glance down at my watch, surprised it's already a quarter 'til one in the afternoon. "Yeah, I'm on my way."

"I'll tell your dad to go ahead without you. Okay. Copy that, my little leech lover. Over and out."

I can't help but to roll my eyes and chuckle at my silly nickname. Leave it to my parents to combine my love for bugs and their fascination with blood-sucking vampires, making it a term of endearment.

Starting down the trail, I estimate it will take about forty-five minutes to get to the cabin, so I decide to take a shortcut through the forest, hopefully cutting my time in half. A half mile down the hill, I spot two deer in a small clearing. I silently creep toward them, careful to not make any noise to scare them. As soon as my foot touches down on the edge of the tree line, the mother fucking walkie talkie blares into the peaceful wilderness again.

"Oops! Sorry, dear! I was just wondering if you were almost back at the cabin? Over."

The deer leap off into the brush on the other side of the meadow, leaving me to contemplate throwing the damn electronic device against a nearby tree stump. I take a deep breath, reeling in my aggravation and let it out slowly through my mouth.

Once I've beaten down my frustration, I respond back in the most pleasant voice I can muster, "I will get there in another ten minutes or so, Mom."

"Okay, darling. I'll set up the picnic table and make you some lemonade."

"Fine. See you in a few."

I switch off the power and reclip it to the waistband of my shorts. Tentatively stepping into the small meadow, I survey the fringe, looking for any more deer lurking in the shadows. At the far end of the clearing, there's an outcropping of boulders, large and gray, with portions covered in soft-looking moss. I stride over to check it out and notice a conveniently situated stone, about hip high, and flat enough that I can imaging Bella's beautiful, naked body sprawled across it, her skin practically glowing in the bright Arizona sun. I can't wait to bring her back here, as my wife, and make love to her in the middle of nature. God, what an awesome idea.

I turn to leave the meadow and notice partial view of the lake at the base of the mountain. A gentle breeze whips around me, carrying the scent of pine and grass with it. There is something magical about the forest. Now, living in the arid desert around Phoenix is nice, but I've always wanted to live some place filled with ferns pelted by rain, white-capped mountains in the distance, and the ocean nearby. That would be Heaven to me, as long as Bella was by my side, too.

I spend the rest of the day with my parents watching DVDs and talking about all the changes happening this summer; my wedding, moving to Tucson, starting college. Mom gets a bit misty-eyed a few times, but thankfully manages to keep her emotions under control. I go to bed early, claiming the heat of the day and my long hike have worn me down, but really I just want to be alone with my girl. Uhh, well, with the picture of my girl, I mean.

Saturday starts off the same as Friday, a delicious breakfast - courtesy of Mom - and a hike in the woods. This time Dad comes with me while Mom snuggles in her hammock, book in hand, sipping some lemonade. We are gone for most of the day, trekking to Mogollan Rim and back, when we radio to Mom, letting her know we'll be home shortly for dinner. She yells at Dad for going so far out of walkie talkie range, and he calms her down with apologies and promises to buy a longer ranged set next time. Then she turns her nagging toward me, bitching about my clothes all over the place, and how Bella will not be my personal maid in Tucson. I tease her about her new, teenage book fetish, and we all laugh. Typical Masen family behavior: Mom complains, Dad kisses her ass, and I make a smartass comment to break the tension.

We make it back to the cabin just as Mom is setting the table. We enjoy a quiet evening together, recalling the fish we caught yesterday and the herd of elk we spotted on the hike today. Mom listens with rapt attention, living vicariously through our adventures and shuddering at the mention of the four foot rattle snake we crossed paths with near the lake. I turn in early for the night, eager for tomorrow morning to arrive and start our trip home, and back into the arms of my wife-to-be.


" lovely. "

A sweet voice whispers in my ear, but I'm not sure if it's part of a dream or reality. I haven't climbed back into consciousness yet, so it must be a disembodied voice in my dream. Laying still, I wait for the sound to return, but it doesn't. The only thing I notice is the faint scent of vanilla and bergamot, sweet and fruity, and wonder if I'm remembering Bella's body lotion, or if Mom is trying to infuse the house with potpourri again.

I slip back into deep sleep easily, returning to my dream of surfing in Hawaii, but now I'm being circled by man-eating sharks, swirling faster and faster, creating a maelstrom that sucks my surf board down it's vortex.

"Whaddya say, handsome? Wanna come home with me?" the voice giggles from farther away.

Now, there's a woman standing on the ocean floor at the bottom of the whirlpool, smiling at me with outstretched her arms, inviting me to her. It looks like Bella, but I'm not sure. Her hair is long and wavy like Bella's but her voice is different and it's too dark at the bottom of the sea to tell. The woman reaches out to me, touching my cheek softly. Her skin is cold and hard, not like the soft and warm skin of my fiancée. My heart rate picks up, and I feel uneasy, but I can't seem to tell why. The woman seems happy to see me, wanting me closer, luring me in with a wiggle of her finger.

"Who are you?" I ask, my voice mumbled.

Her smile gets wider as she takes a step toward me. Sharks are still circling around us, snapping their teeth at me as they come closer.

"Me? Well, I'm your creator, sweetness," she coos, reaching closer to me and gripping my chin firmly with her frozen fingers, forcing me to look in her eyes. "And you will be my mate."

I look at this crazy, undersea woman as if she's spoken Japanese with a German accent. Surely, she knows I am engaged to be married. There is no other woman for me than Bella.

"You're absurd. Bella is my 'mate', and there's nothing you can do to change that. We're getting married in a couple of weeks." I glower at her as the wall of water starts to close in on us, the razor-sharp teeth of the sharks coming closer.

"You're wrong, my precious," she says, slowly dragging her fingers down my neck and chest, hooking into the waistband of my shorts and pulling me against her body. "You belong to me."

My breathing increases, and I feel a strange sense of unease wash across me as I stare at this crazy woman. Suddenly, she narrows her eyes at me, contemplating something and then vanishes, leaving me at the base of the vortex alone. The sharks have vanished too, and I wonder if this is my one chance to escape. I pick up my surfboard and head toward the wall of water, hoping that I can ride the upswing toward the surface when I hear a loud, blood-curdling scream.

But it's not the dream woman's high pitched voice, nor is it Bella's. It sounds like... it sounds like Mom.

I am jolted awake by another ear-piercing screech, but it's quickly cut off as a loud thud is heard from my parents' room.

"Mom? Dad?"


I ask again, louder, "MOM?! DAD?!"

The only sound from my parents room is a muted, childish chuckle.

I toss my blankets to the side and scramble out of bed and toward the hallway. My door is open, which is odd, because I know I closed it when I went to bed. I take a few steps into the hallway, ready to knock on my parents' door to make sure everything is okay, when their door swings open and something grabs me by my throat.

"Where do you think you're going, sweetness?" A woman's shrill echoes throughout the cabin. It's too dark for me to get a good look at her, because all I can concentrate on is the iron-grasp around my neck. She's strong, holding me captive with one hand, and walks me backwards toward my room.

"Wha-Wh-..." I can barely breathe, much less speak.

"Shhhhh," she tries to soothe me. "No questions yet, my precious, there will be plenty of time for that later."

I struggle to breathe and remain upright as she easily lifts my body higher, leaving only my toes touching the floor. As we cross the threshold into my room, I grab the door jamb, halting her briefly. She sighs, letting go of my throat, allowing me to practically fall to the floor, but she scoops me into her arms.

"I wouldn't let you fall, sweetness. I won't let anything hurt you... for all eternity," she snickers at her own joke.

I claw at the door jambs, knocking my dresser mirror off kilter, desperate to escape her clutches. She pulls me closer against her chest, inhales a deep breath, and releases a low, feral-sounding growl from her throat. Suddenly, I'm tossed onto my bed and she's straddling my lap.

"Don't try to fight me, sugar. You will only hurt yourself." She runs her hand gently along my cheek and jaw, leaning down to place a few kisses against my lips. Her mouth is cold and hard like icicles; her long, wavy hair shrouding her face from the moonlight streaming in from the window.

I wrench my face away from hers, and she sits up, annoyed. "I told you not to fight me, boy." She scoots down further, straddling my thighs. Cupping her hand firmly against my junk, she snarls, "I'll take what's mine, if you won't give it up willingly. You'll end up like your parents if you can't behave."

"MOOOOOM!! DAAAAAD!!" I scream.

"Don't waste your breath, sweetness. They were collateral damage," she shrugs and encircles my wrists with her hands, pinning them to the pillow. "Well, actually, they were kind of like my appetizer... so I wouldn't kill you, my precious." She smiles innocently, as if what she's said makes perfect sense.

What the hell is she talking about? She's fucking psycho!

"Who the fuck are you?" I roar, struggling under her tight grasp.

"I told you who I am, but you don't have to worry about any specifics for a few days, sweetpea." She grinds her pelvis against my crotch. "You'll be my mate, and we will have all the time in the world for talking and, uhh, other things." She giggles.

I continue to struggle against her grip, but she just smiles at me, patiently waiting for my acquiescence. Once I'm exhausted, I give in. I'm never going to escape from this woman... this thing. She's alien, unhuman, and for some stupid reason, I need to know what she is.

"What are you?" I whisper in defeat.

Relishing my surrender, she leans toward my ear and whispers seductively, "I'm a vampire, sweetness, but you can call me Victoria."


Post a Comment

Disclaimer: I don't own Twilight or it's character names - those belong to Stephenie Meyer. Bittersweet Irony and it's characterizations, backgrounds, and plot lines belong to SweetVenom69. No copying, translation, or reproduction is allowed without my written authorization.
© 2010 SweetVenom69.