Saturday, October 2, 2010

Osa Bella - The End! [Twilight Fanfiction]


If you do something with all your heart, it will change you. I don't care what it is. Writing, working, raising kids, reading, falling in love, following a blog, planning a trip, meeting online friends in a faraway place for a weekend for no other reason than the fact that you know it's going to be awesome, you know it's going to be an experience you'll remember the rest of your days—what I'm trying to tell you all is that I'm not the same Myg I was before Twilight, before Osa Bella, before all of you.

So thank you from the bottom of my heart for all the love and enthusiasm you have given Osa Bella and the encouragement you've given me. In case you are wondering if it makes an impact, please know that it absofuckinglutely does. I wouldn't be posting this from Forks if it wasn't for all of you. And Forks is a long, long way from Jersey, folks.

Osa Bella would be a whimper, a suggestion of what you've read if not for the love and attention and dedication of a whole team of people, so please put your hands together, first and foremost for SnarkierThanYou, without whom Osa Bella simply would not exist. STY was my seductress, she has been my muse, my cheerleader, and my mentor. She was the one who got me to read Twilight, she was the first person to ever lay eyes on Osa Bella and she was the one who insisted I share it with the world. I can't post a single word of this without her approval. I love you, STY. I cannot believe it took Twilight for us to figure out that we had to be much, much closer friends, but I will always be grateful we got here. (And same goes for that little punk, Jenny Jerkface, who lives down the damned street for me and who I never even met until New Moon was in the theaters.)

STY, Jenny Jerkface and Latchkey Wife gave Osa Bella her first true home and her best, most loving, supportive and fun audience right here at Twitarded. Thank you forever and ever, ladies. Mr. Myg and I always say, no matter how many readers we get anywhere, our best readers are right here. I could do little but write for you all the rest of my days and be a very happy Myg.

The sweet VitaminR70 is my location consultant and has read every word of this—multiple times, people! She's held my hand through many renditions and has been unfailingly enthusiastic every step of the way.

TexasKatherine, well, you all know how awesome she is, but did you know she's also an amazing beta? I roped her into this half way through and she is Mr. Myg's tag team pal on the snarky beat-downs in google docs. All done with love, of course, she is relentless in her pursuit of purging the suck out of my early drafts (and there's plenty of suckage in those words, and not the good kind). I always say if your betas don't kick your ass, fire them. Thank you so much, TK. I can't write another word without you. Sorry.

Later in the game, Gkkstitch found herself with a little free time after Lolashoes wrapped This Hungry World and I abducted her into the Osa Bella beta vortex. She has read and re-read and re-read again the last several chapters of this story and her contributions have also been ass kicking in the best of ways. Thanks for jumping into the game and helping to bring this ship into port, bb.

At the very end of re-writing this, I had a bit of a melt down and really needed a fresh pair of eyes. I slipped a rough draft of the last four chapters to Lolashoes for some hand holding and she was kind enough to read and give virtual cuddles and hugs and tell me it was all going to be okay. Thank you so much, Lo. Some of you may have noticed that Osa Bella has picked up a few more readers since we started out here at Twitarded. Lolashoes is largely responsible for that with her twitter endorsements and RTs and the interview she did with me for Peas and Carrots. She's probably the sweetest person I've never met and I may have been inspired to write some femme slash in her honor, no wait, that actually happened.

You know I can't wrap this without a proper shout out to Mr. Myg, who right now is back in New Jersey, single-parenting my 20 month old twin boys so I could  get my crazy ass on a plane to Seattle and hook up with a bunch of you out here in the promised land. What the hell kind of husband would do that? An incredibly generous, supportive, and insane one. Well, Mr. Myg is pretty much the antithesis of insane, but he knows what's important and when this trip came up, he said, "Myg, you have to go."

You also know how hard he's kicked my ass in the editing department, or rather you may not since you're not allowed to read any Osa Bella that hasn't been through the Mr. Myg filter. The man knows how to write, folks. If you think Osa Bella is at all well-written, thank him because he made it so. And for those of you who love Osa Bella's Edward? All I can say is, he takes lessons in awesomeness from Mr. Myg.

Now, please grab your sniffs because I need to make a special dedication.

Those of you who were around these parts for Fandom Gives Back already know that I lost my kid sister this year to cancer. What you may not realize is that Osa Bella is what I did to cope with my grief. I started writing it in the final stages of her illness and became obsessed with it after she died. I guess I was trying to escape the pain, find some respite, which I got plenty of right here reading Twitarded every day. What I began to realize was that Bella's struggle in Osa Bella was my way of coming to terms, yet again, with the fuckawful certainty of death and the pain of loss and figuring out how you just fucking go on and live and find joy in your life after that. I did figure it out, again, and I have to tell you, you all were a very big part of that path for me.

Anyway, I'd like to specially dedicate Osa Bella to Amanda, my kid sister. Kid, I don't know where you are or if you can hear me, but if so, please do NOT, for the love of God, let Dad find out about some of the shit that goes on in Chapters 21, 24, 25, 26—anyway, you get the idea. Your baby B told me she's going as Bella for Halloween this year and I have to dress the Myglets as vampires. Mr. Myg gave the big eye roll over that, but you know he can never say no to B. Since she's never even seen the movie (I promise to show it to her when she's older), I am just going to assume that's your way of telling me you're still here and you've got my back. I want you to know I'm still here and I've got yours, too. And I'll damn well make sure B has just the right accessories, all the way from Ffffffooooorrrrrkkkkssss, to make her the best 8 year old Bella ever.

Now, grab the sniffs, clean your shit up. We've got a story to finish.

When we last left our badass hero Bella and her now second ex-fiance, the dreamy sailor Edward, they'd learned that some dreadful tragedy worthy of a National Geographic cover had gone down in the wake of Bella's great escape from the beach at La Push. The bears had swam out to follow her, and they couldn't be turned back. They were drowning out there (and shit, when I went to La Push on Thursday and stared out at the ocean? I could see the heads of black bears struggling in the water and I nearly doubled over—no lie. It sucks, sometimes, to have an overactive imagination). Anyway, Bella and Edward made the very difficult choice to turn Reckoner around and go back. Last I heard, Jake asked Bella to marry him to keep her from being dragged off to Canada by the bears, which I personally think was totally kickass of him under the circumstances, and Bella accepted, but only because Edward asked her to. See, Edward knows Jake will keep her safe, and this he needs more than he needs anything else. Word has it Edward found his way to Jake's house and was waiting to see Bella one last time.

I wonder how that's going to go down.

Now, here's your pdf.

So, this is it, guys. Well, okay, we've got a couple of outtakes to discuss and I think there's an epi brewing too. But this is the real end. The place it was all headed. The answers to all the questions. They're here.

Let's do this thing.


Love,
Myg
Forks, WA
October 2, 2010 

CHAPTER 35
Contrition

Day broke under a cloudless sky, soft, pink rays rising up over the tree tops, suggesting another uncharacteristically sunny morning. As we approached the Black house Jake let go of my hand and grimaced a little, like he was hiding a great discomfort, but not all that well. I nervously twisted the new engagement ring on my finger, like turning a small lie concealing a much bigger falsehood. But my sense of duty trumped my sense of romantic idealism. So I couldn't marry the man I truly loved—I hated the fact, but I had a tribe that needed me, and sometimes you just have to step up. This was one of those times.

The five bears following us paused at the end of Jake's driveway as they were met by two wolfs, one I recognized as Leah, and she directed them to the lawn across the street. Six other wolves from Jake's pack were stationed around the perimeter of the Black's property and their temporary Commander in Chief appeared to be Charlie, who sat on the porch in a rocker with a shotgun across his lap.

"What are you doing?" I asked as Jake and I approached.

"Just providing a little disincentive for anyone unfriendly, that's all," Charlie said, eyeing the bears who sat across the street on their haunches, sniffing the air. I looked at him with gratitude, tearing up a little. "Edward saved your life," he said. "I owe him that much, at least."

I leaned over the shotgun on Charlie's lap and gave him a kiss on the cheek. He raised his eyebrows and nodded at the door. "He's waiting for you."

[PSST...click "Read More" to keep going!]



Inside, Edward sat at the kitchen table with Billy and Sue. He looked unusually stiff and vampire-like as he sat in that humble, small room with its mismatched furniture. Sunlight streamed through the windows, reflecting off of Edward's face. As Jake and I came in he rose to his feet, made eye contact with me and then Jake, and then glanced at the new engagement ring on my left hand. I cringed as pain crossed his face, but then his eyes met mine again and it was obvious he was relieved. I ran to him and threw my arms around his neck, catching him by surprise, and he held me almost painfully close.

"What are you doing here?" I asked. "How did you even get here without the bears finding you? They're everywhere."

"Leah," he said, and I could tell he was making awkward eye contact with Jake over my shoulder. "I ran into her over by the cliffs and she brought me back here."

"Jake," I turned to see him standing directly behind us, arms crossed, frowning. "You have to get Edward out of here."

"No, Bella," Edward said. "I came to see Hamani and the Ani Tsa' gu hi elders. Billy and Sue were just advising me how to approach them."

"You can't see Hamani," I said. "No way."

"I can't live an eternity without facing these people and making whatever amends I can make," Edward said. "At the very least, I need to make an apology for the damage I've caused."

"They'll want justice," I said. "They'll kill you, don't you see? There'll be no eternity to worry about."

"They may not," Billy said. "We can find out if they'll entertain a formal apology and restitution. Edward brought you back so you can marry Jake and unite the tribes…"

"That was Bella's idea," Edward said.

"You supported it," I said. "You didn't have to bring me back."

"In any case," Billy said, "They may agree to a peaceful resolution, especially if you and Jake ask them."

"Why are you trying to help Edward?" I asked.

"Because," Billy said, "he asked me to."

"I thought you didn't like the Cullens," I said, challenging. Sue's face clouded over with guilt and Billy turned to look at Edward, like he was assessing him, or rather re-assessing him.

"I appreciate what he's trying to do," Billy finally said. "And we would always rather have peace."

I looked over at Jake, who averted his eyes to the floor. Sue said, "We know how you feel about him, Bella. Of course we want to help him."

"Well, it's too risky," I said.

"Bella, I can't run from an entire population of black bears for the rest of eternity," Edward said. "My family is also in danger now. I have to see if there's anything I can do."

"I'd feel the same way if I were him," Jacob said.

"You don't care if he gets killed," I snapped at Jake. "You don't care what happens to him."

"If that was true I wouldn't be protecting him right now, would I?" Jake shot back. "You think I want to see you fall apart because he gets himself killed? I know what a fucked up mess you'll be if he dies."

Edward glared at Jake, his body tensing with restraint. He squeezed my hand. "Jake is doing me a favor right now," he said.

"I'm doing Bella a favor," Jake said.

"Whatever," Edward said.

"We'll talk to the Ani Tsa' gu hi first and see if they'll agree to meet with Edward," Sue said.

"Thank you, Sue," Edward said, giving her an appreciative look.

"No," I said. "I'm afraid of what they'll do."

"Bella," sat down and pulled me into his lap. He held me close and whispered in my ear, "Please don't ask me to spend eternity a coward."

I didn’t want to agree, but the deepest part of me, the part that saw truth and didn’t shade it with fear, understood. In fact, I wanted him to face Hamani. I didn't want him to run from the pain and the destruction we'd brought to the tribe. Coming back and facing the bears had allowed me to untie the knot of regret strangling my heart. How could I really, fairly, deny Edward the same opportunity? But the terror of losing him was at war with that part of me that understood the larger consequence of Edward running from this. And as we sat in the Black's kitchen, I realized that my current fears were the same ones Edward had the day before when he let me jump from Reckoner's bow and dive into the Pacific. So I had to let it go. And I had to help him.

"I'll ask Hamani if he'll consider a peaceful resolution," I said. "If he promises not to kill you, then you can meet with him and the elders."

"Okay," Edward said. "But I am going to face him sooner or later, one way or another."

#

Jake and I arrived at the tribal council office mid-morning. Sue and Billy were already there with a fresh pot of coffee and a tin of blueberry muffins, which Sue passed around to all of the elders and Anna Marie. Hamani took one, sniffed at it and took a small bite. "Are you hungry Bella?" Sue asked, handing me the muffin tin. "You haven't eaten a thing since yesterday."

"No, thank you," I said, putting the tin on the table and taking the seat across from Hamani. "Did you explain it yet?"

"We were waiting for you," Billy said.

"What's going on?" Anna Marie asked. "Does it have to do with the Cold One you're holding at the Black's house?"

"Yes," Jake said. "Edward Cullen has returned and is asking for an audience with the elders."

"He wants peace," I said. "He would like a chance to apologize to the tribe and offer whatever restitution he can make."

Anna Marie paused and looked curiously at Jake, who shrugged his shoulders and then looked out the window, and then back at her. Anna Marie then relayed this information to Hamani, who was finishing off the last crumbs from his breakfast. He frowned and made several gestures with his hands at Jake as he responded. Then he closed his eyes and put his hands over his face for a moment. I imagined he was recalling the mass drowning from the day before, the loss of his children, and it made me sick inside.

"Hamani says Jake should kill the Cold One and get your memories back so you can phase back," she said. "He has no interest in his apologies."

I turned to Jake, my stomach twisted and hard with fear. He shook his head slightly and grit his teeth.

"The Cold One is sincere in his remorse," Sue said, giving me a supportive look. "Billy and I spoke with him a long time this morning. He has many resources that may be of use to the tribe. Maybe an understanding can be reached."

“They don’t trust him,” Anna Marie said, gesturing to the elders. “He’s a vampire, you know?"

"The Cullens are different," Billy said. "Our tribe has had a long standing peace with them. I know a great harm has been done, but Edward wants to be accountable."

Anna Marie spoke to Hamani again, who then conferred with the other elders. He appeared to grow more agitated, shaking his head in disagreement.

“I’m supposed to be their spirit guardian, right?" I said. "Don’t I have any pull here?”

“If you would phase, they’d agree to anything you want," Anna Marie said.

“Ha ha,” I said sarcastically. “I can go buy a bear suit. Will that work?”

“They’re not idiots,” she said, irritated.

"Edward brought me back here yesterday to marry Jake and keep the tribe from destroying themselves," I said. "Doesn't that count for anything?"

"He brought you back, of his own will?" Anna Marie asked.

"Yes," I said, recalling again the moment when Edward admitted he wanted to flee with me and never look back. That was fine, I thought. Anyone would feel that way. Hell, I felt that way myself. But in the end he did bring me back, and that's what mattered.

Anna Marie relayed this information, and the elders debated what it meant, what they should feel or do in response, their voices a mixture of disbelief and surprise. They talked for several minutes and then she said, "Will Edward relinquish his hold on you in a sacred ceremony and then give you to Jacob Black to be married, before the spirits?"

"What do you mean? They want Edward to give me away at our wedding?"

"Yes."

"He's not my father."

"Hamani says the Cold One has an unnaturally strong attachment to you because he has your memories now. So, Hamani won't give him an audience unless he will come into the sacred circle and dissolve that bond with you before the tribe and the spirits."

"Jesus," I said, my stomach hollow. "You mean like an anti-wedding?"

"Yes, sort of," she said, and then she conferred with Hamani again. "Edward will bring you before Hamani and the elders and they will ask the spirits to unbind you. Then you will be rid of him spiritually and free to reclaim your memories, to remember your true self. Then you can marry Jacob. This is what the elders require before they'll grant him an audience."

"Um… " I stalled. What a sickening proposition this was. It was like they believed Edward could be exorcised from my soul, like he was some kind of demon. The thought made me feel nauseous. I did not believe what they suggested was actually possible—Edward could never be chased out of my heart, even if he chose to vacate, which I knew he never would. But I felt threatened anyway. And I wasn't sure Edward would go along. "Isn't there something else he can do instead?" I asked.

"What's the problem?"

"It just seems a little… extreme."

"He has nothing else that they want," Anna Marie said. "But I should warn you, if he won't do it, they will take that as confirmation that he is planning to come for you again, and they will not allow that."

"What do you mean?"

Hamani interrupted Anna Marie, tapping her shoulder and pointing out the window, making sweeping gestures with his arms, indicating his impatience. She spoke with him for several minutes.

"Hamani says if he will not agree to the unbinding ceremony, they will go to him now. They cannot risk him taking you again."

"He's under my protection," Jake said.

"I know that, Jake," she said. "But they don't trust him—they do not like your arrangement with the Cold Ones."

"That's too bad," Jake said. "These are our lands. They have to respect our wishes."

"They outnumber you," Anna Marie said. "Can't you see that? This is too important to them—they will not risk losing her again."

"I never said Edward wouldn't do it," I said, breaking into their conversation. "But If he does, Hamani and the elders must enter a new peace treaty with the Cullens, like the Quileute have."

"I'm not sure that they'll entertain that," she said.

"Ask Hamani…" I paused. "No… tell Hamani this is what Jake and I will require after we are married and the tribes are united."

Hamani scowled at Anna Marie as she relayed my demand. He spoke quickly, his voice rising. Then the elders all spoke, a rumbling of dissenting opinions until Hamani's voice rose above the others and he spoke to Anna Marie.

"He says if the Cold One will release you from his attachment, they will abide a new treaty with the Cullens—only the Cullens though. No other Cold Ones."

"Of course," I said.

"But Bella, if Edward tries to steal you again, they will kill him."

"He won't," I said, a hollow, cold feeling settling in the pit of my stomach. "But I want the Cullens to be able to return to their home in Forks."

Anna Marie turned and spoke to Hamani again, who said a few words nodded slowly in my direction. "Not Edward," Anna Marie said. "Hamani says he has to leave immediately after the ceremony."

"That's fine," Jake said.

"Why does he have to leave?" I said.

"Temptation," Anna Marie said.

"You can't argue that," Jake said, looking at me.

#

The elders, led by Hamani, wanted to see for themselves if Edward would agree to these conditions. Not willing to simply trust my reassurances, they instead insisted on coming back to the house to speak to him directly. But I already knew Edward would take issue with this proposal. I was going to have to convince him and reassure him, and that was something I did not want to do with an audience. I wasn't sure how I was going to convince him to go along with a ceremony intended to break the spiritual bond we had. I didn't want to go through with it myself and I would have refused those terms, if it wasn't for the fact that I didn't believe in them—didn't believe there was anything anyone could do that could break the bond we had. But I also knew that Edward would not want to fake some act of contrition just to appease the Ani Tsa' gu hi. He would struggle with this demand.

Edward walked out onto the porch as he sensed the large group of us approaching. Charlie got to his feet, his gun at his side.

"What's this?" Charlie asked as we got near.

"They have a deal," Edward said, looking at Jake and then Anna Marie, reading their thoughts. "And not a good one," he added. He looked at me silently, and shook his head No.

"You have to," I said, before anyone else said a word. Then I turned to Hamani and said, "I need to speak to him alone."

Hamani shook his head in disagreement, as though he was now understanding what I'd asked of him.

"Yes," I nodded. "I'll be right inside. I won't go anywhere, I swear." I took his hand in mine and gave it a reassuring squeeze, and then I strode up the stairs, into the house. Charlie positioned himself defensively toward the crowd as I led Edward back inside.

"Don't ask me to do this," Edward said.

"We have no choice," I said, my voice strained as I attempted to hold back tears.

"You expect me to participate in a sacred ceremony of unbinding with you?" he said. "Like renounce my love for you before the tribes, before the spirits, before God?"

"Yes," I said, cringing at the words.

"I can't do that. That's like disavowing my one reason for existing."

"You have to," I said. "If you don't do it, they'll take that as confirmation that you're planning to steal me again and they'll kill you."

"Bella…"

"If you do this, it will guarantee the safety of your family, Edward. They can come home. And then when things settle down and the bears are pacified, I will find a way to leave here and I swear, I will return to you."

"You've agreed to this?" he asked, incredulous, bordering on angry.

"Yes," I said, choking up.

"I can't believe this," he said. "I'd rather they killed me than make me do that."

"Please, please don't make me watch you die," I implored him.

"How can you expect me to renounce my love for you, Bella? I can't do it. I won't."

"Edward," I said, my voice rising in pitch, wavering as I tried to keep my volume down in spite of the desperation that rose in my throat, filled my lungs. "You told me that I was yours, that I belonged to you. You said that nothing would ever change that—not even marrying Jake."

"I know that," he said.

"Well, don't you believe it?"

"Of course I do," he said. "That's the problem." He sat down on the couch and pulled me into his lap. "I want you to understand something," he said, touching his brow to mine. "Do you know why I returned to La Push, why I want to see Hamani?"

"Yes," I said. "You feel remorseful and you want to make things right."

"I'm here because I want to be worthy of your love," he said and then kissed me lightly on the lips. "You had the strength to come back and lead the tribe to safety, in direct conflict with your own heart's desire. So how can I go through an unbinding ceremony to appease Hamani and all the while in my heart know it's a lie? Because Bella, there is nothing they could say or do that will tear your soul from mine."

My tears were hot as they rolled off my cheeks and he brushed them from my face with his thumbs and then kissed me on the forehead. I touched my lips to his and felt them cool, strong, steady.

"Edward," I whispered. "I need you to do this. For me. For us."

He put his arms around me and kissed the top of my head and held me for a long time. Then he kissed me, quietly on the lips and held my face in his hands.

"Okay, I'll do it," he said. "As long as you understand, it will never work."

#

Edward and I returned to the porch where everyone waited for Edward's answer. As the sun bounced its bright rays off of his face, the elders grew agitated, like they were concerned some kind of magic might follow. Their voices rose and then they all phased except for Hamani, who stood next to Anna Marie, waiting for Edward to speak. He and Edward stood in a silent stand off, looking intently at each other as Jake's pack came running and surrounded the small crowd out on the lawn, ready to intervene should there be any trouble.

"It's okay," I said. "We have an agreement."

"So the Cold One has agreed to the unbinding ceremony?" Anna Marie said.

"Yes," Edward said. "Let me know what I need to do.

Anna Marie paused, her eyes lingering on Edward's face curiously. She and Hamani spoke and then she continued. "Tomorrow we will perform the unbinding before the wedding. You will bring Hala to the sacred circle and give her back to the tribe so she can be married to Jacob."

"Carlisle needs to be here," I said, suddenly, realizing that Edward would be alone to defend himself should anything go awry.

"No, he doesn't," Edward said. "I'll let him know when the treaty is in place."

"Dad," I said. "Call Carlisle. He needs to get here. Today."

"There's no need," Edward said, agitated.

"I'll call him," Charlie said. "He should at least know where you are, Edward. I'd want to know."

"Jake?" I said. "You've got to assure the Cullens can attend tomorrow's ceremony. Please."

"I can do that," he said, for once without hostility, and perhaps a a little relief that Edward was going to let me go. "We'll confer with the rest of the elders. Anna Marie? Clear it with Hamani. We need the Cullens here to formalize the new treaty, anyway."

Anna Marie relayed the information to Hamani, and he nodded his assent. Edward shifted his eyes over the crowd of bears, tense and unhappy with the task before him.

"Honey, you need a dress," Sue said, out of the blue. "The wedding is in two days and you have nothing."

"She has a dress," Edward said. I looked at him and shook my head no, somewhat horrified. "It's in the Vanquish, back at the house. I'll get it for you."

"That dress has some pretty special meaning to me," I said. "Not sure if this is the time and place to break it out."

"I just need to see you in it one last time," he said.


CHAPTER THIRTY SIX
Osa Bella

"Stop fussing, hija." Illeana pulled my hand from where I was twisting a lock of hair out of place and held it. "I spent an hour getting your hair just right."

"Sorry, Ill," I said, putting my hands in my lap, surveying my freshly manicured nails. "Nerves."

"I still say you should let me come down to the beach for the ceremony," she said. "I'm supposed to be your moral support."

"Carl would kill me and I'd never forgive myself if anything happened to you or Perla," I said." As much as everyone promises to be civil, the last time the bears, vampires and wolves were all together, someone got their head torn off."

"She was a vampire, so it didn't really count."

"I doubt she'd agree."

"Well, I still don't know how you expect me to be your maid of honor from here."

"You're doing everything I need you to do right now," I said. "And you can do some hypnosis on me when I get back. That's what I really need."

"Oh, Bella," she said, hugging me. "You've really been handed your share of shit to deal with in this life. Things will turn around for you. Have faith."

"Right," I said, doing my best to take the edge off my cynicism.

I looked around at the cardboard boxes of my things, piled in stacks throughout the small house Jake and I would share with his father. Illeana and I sat alone in the bedroom and I contemplated how long I could keep Jake sleeping on the couch, or if he'd just relent and take his room back and let me sleep on the pullout. I stared at the walls, the bed and the small lamp on the dresser and felt numbness like it was creeping out of my heart and up to my brain.

It was the hour before my wedding to Jacob, and nothing felt real.

For a moment, I willed myself to remember what it was like to have a normal life. I remembered my job, the kids of the Thoreau Club, getting drunk on Christmas with Jake, walking down Forks Avenue in the snow. I remembered going to work and meeting the Cullens that first day of school. And then I realized, surprisingly, that I didn't want to go back. Whatever was coming, I still wanted—needed—to move forward.

"You do love Jake, you know," Illeana said gently, interrupting my thoughts. She fixed the twisted strand of hair behind my ear where it joined the gently curling tendrils hanging loosely down my back. "You have a long history, a solid friendship. That's a better foundation for a marriage than lots of couples start with, you know?"

"I know," I said, nodding. "Jake is a good guy."

"So then, will you at least try to be happy? Once you give yourself some time, of course."

"Sure," I said, dismissively. But I didn't need to be happy, I just needed to not drown in pessimism. I needed to not become hopeless. And I was going to need a lot of time before I'd be able to feel anything akin to happiness again. Right now I'd settle for resolved.

"Life has to go on, right?" she said, softly.

"Right," I said.

What she said was true, of course, though it didn't feel true at all. It was the kind of truth you know in your head but you can't trust with your heart, no matter how many times you lived it, like I had. I could look at the trajectory of my own life, see where I'd been and understand that life would go on, but the truth in my heart was quite different. There was a part of my life that could never go on without Edward. That part would stay locked away here in my memory, frozen in time, just like him. With him. Waiting for the moment he would come for me, however long it took. Even if it took forever.

Yet there are some things in this world, I’d finally come to accept, that are just significant beyond one’s own heartache, one’s own desire—beyond one's own, singular truth. They stand above even the strongest bond between two individuals. And this was the web of consequence Edward and I had been caught in that dark night in the woods at Lake Crescent, near Marymere Falls, after the fire had died out and the kids had gone to sleep and we'd found ourselves together at the edge of the water, deep in the woods, following the impulse of our desire. The night Edward accidentally crowned me Spirit Queen of the black bears. And that was bigger than us, than our love, than what we wanted. We'd both conceded this. But I still didn't like it.

However, when I thought of things this way I could see my marriage to Jake in a political light, and that made it easier. It was more of a mission, and if I was going to be forced to marry someone besides Edward, I was lucky it was one of my best friends. Jake's unfailing commitment to marry me, despite my desertion, despite my feelings for Edward, had proven the quality of his character. He was a born leader who put the welfare of his people first. I was trying to live up to that—to be worthy of the role that had been assigned me by fate. I had a heartache to tend to, this was true. But I had a purpose, and this was more important.

I looked at myself in the mirror one last time and then grabbed my bouquet—a simple gathering of blood red roses. Edward had sent them over for me that morning, along with my dress and a pair of shoes contributed by Alice.

"I'll see you in about an hour," I said, giving Illeana a kiss on the cheek. "I'll be Spirit Queen of the Bears then, but you can just call me Your Majesty, Her Royal Highness, Queen of the Black Bears."

"I think I'll just call you Osa Bella from now on," she said. "It's easier."

"What's that mean?"

"Beautiful bear," she said, smiling. "Get it? Isabella? Osa-bella?"

"Clever," I said, giving her a hug. "I like 'Your Majesty' better though."

#

They say that if you want to call the spirits, you should call them in twilight. The veil between the two worlds is the sheerest, your message swift and clear to the other side, and their journey to this world more palatable. This was the time of day Hamani set for the unbinding ceremony, with the wedding to follow under the cover of night. Like a child forming in the blessed darkness her mother's womb, my wedding to Jake would cast me anew into this world.

When Charlie and I arrived on the beach, the sun was descending into the horizon, its final beams streaking reds, oranges into the slowly darkening blue of the night. The first thing I noticed was not the presence of the spirits, but the blazing fire, spitting sparks high into the wind, several yards down from the gathering of the wedding guests. My heart began to flutter as I recognized the potential danger. Vampires don't like fires, I remembered Jake saying. Of course they don't—you can destroy a vampire by fire.

Not surprisingly, the Cullens were grouped on the perimeter of the gathering, farthest from the flames, closest to the water. Alice was perched on an enormous piece of faded drift wood, and her eyes caught mine and she gave me the smallest, saddest wave. Sadness welled in me too, because I wanted to run to her and hug her and tell her how glad I was that she was there—that they all were. But this I could not do. So instead, I nodded in her direction, and then waved to Carlisle, Esme, Emmett, Rosalie and Jasper who all nodded in return, their faces in different expressions of sympathy and disappointment. I hated seeing them like that, their natural vibrancy doing little to temper the heft of their grief.

Mercy Brown had interrupted her tour and flown in from the other side of the country to be there for Edward. As a gift from the vampires to me, she offered to sing a song at the ceremony. This was a concession on Jake's part, but knowing my love of her music, he agreed.

Charlie and I picked our way through the layers of driftwood scattered on the beach to the gathering of people who awaited our arrival.

"I know you," Charlie said, looking over his shoulder at my strange entourage, eight bears who followed us at a respectful distance. "Part of you would have rather toughed it out with the bears than go through with this."

"And miss your Christmas parties and summer barbecues? Never," I said.

"Whatever happens, Bella," he said. "I'm behind you. I want you to know that."

"Could you not make me cry right now?" I said, giving him a kiss on the cheek. "And I do know that because that's where you've always been, Dad. Every step of the way."

Closer to the fire, I saw Hamani. He looked pensive, undaunted, powerful as he stood, backlit by the fire, in traditional dress, buckskin leggings, breachcloth and a headdress, the first time I'd ever seen him in one. He stood with Anna Marie and three other Ani Tsa' gu hi tribal elders. Quil Atera Sr., who would be performing the ceremony, stood next to Jake, Embry, Quil Jr., and Seth, waiting for the ceremony to begin. As I took in the sight, I felt my entire body tense.

Where was Edward?

"You all right?" Charlie whispered, giving my elbow a squeeze.

"Yeah, Dad," I said as I steeled myself at the sight of it all. Forty or so black bears were wandering around on the beach, in and around the washed up pieces of wood, tree trunks faded and worn with weather and the salt of the sea. They kept a good distance from the humans and the vampires, and when I arrived they all turned towards me and waited.

I noticed Jake whisper something to Embry and then fidget nervously with the button on his suit jacket. His hair was loose, shining in the firelight. He looked beautiful. I almost wanted to take his picture so I could remember him, my brave and noble friend, before he was bound in a political, platonic marriage to such a weary woman. He looked up from his jacket and gave me a small smile, which I returned.

The tribal elders of the Quileute and the Ani Tsa’ gu hi came together and began to draw a large circle in the sand. They burned sage along the outer rung and took turns chanting to the spirits in their native tongues. Then they invited all the guests to step inside.

"I'll never be far," Charlie said, hugging me and then giving me a kiss on the cheek before he left me to join Sue at the far end of the circle, near Billy.

And then I was alone outside that sacred circle, save my bear entourage, who gathered protectively around me. There were several moments there where I surveyed the scene, looking for one final escape route. I looked out over the water, and then winced as I recalled the dire consequence of my last escape attempt.

As I was musing, Edward appeared, silently, suddenly out of the trees. I was caught off guard as my heart shattered into a thousand fragments at the sight of him. He wore his tuxedo and in the distant firelight, I was immediately brought back to that night he proposed to me at Fox Cove. So little time had passed and everything, absolutely everything about my life had changed. Again.

I quickly pulled myself together. Don't over-think—for once, Bella, I said to myself. Steel yourself. I forced myself to remember the bigger picture, to embrace the resolution of so many problems in this one ceremony. I imagined myself pushing my anger and grief out to sea as far as I could manage. But it wasn’t far enough. It still hurt like fucking hell.

The bears gave low growls of warning and closed in around me, clearly mistrustful of Edward as he approached. "Back off," I said and scowled. "Let him through." They stepped a few feet away, allowing Edward to come near.

"You are beautiful," he said. "I do love you in that dress. Thank you for wearing it."

"You're welcome," I said, barely a whisper, barely words at all.

He stopped and looked at me, slowly, from head to toe, memorizing the moment. I'd never gotten used to him doing that—it still gave me chills. I did the same in return, and then he offered me his arm. "Are you ready?"

"Yeah," I said. "Unless you want to throw me on your back and run for the hills."

"I do," he said. "And if I thought it would work, I would."

"I'm not dressed for a hike, anyway."

"Too many undergarments," he said and I blushed and laughed in spite of myself and the agonizing moment.

"I can't believe you're making me think about that at a time like this." I smiled, shaking my head at him.

"I'd rather think about that than this," he said, nodding towards the circle as we came closer. "I'm sorry."

"Don't be," I whispered, squeezing his arm as tight as I could.

As we walked forward, I tried not to lean my body into his, as tempted as I was to feel his form against my own, to lean my head on his shoulder, to feel his arms around my waist, his lips anywhere on my skin. Instead I focused on the small place where our arms were linked and savored the feel of him against me. How would I let go?

"So, is Jake taking you anywhere… "

"We're not having a honeymoon," I said, and noticed the enormous relief on Edward's face.

"Listen Bella," he said. "I don't know how long this arrangement will have to last… hopefully not too long, but just in case, I've set up a trust fund for you."

"You did what?"

"I know money isn't going to fix much, but it's the only thing I can do right now to make sure you're taken care of."

"Edward," I said. "I can't believe you."

"Are you angry?"

"No, no," I said. "I just… thank you."

"It's nothing, Bella," he said. "Really."

"I'm not sure how Jake is going to feel about that."

"I'm sure I don't care," Edward said, and gave me a smile.

As we reached the outer edge of the circle and stepped inside, Mercy began singing a simple melody, strumming mellow chords on her acoustic guitar. Edward and I stepped into the ring and the larger party of bears closed in around, surrounding the entire ceremony. More bears lumbered out of the forest and gathered around. There had to be more than one hundred of them all told, a formidable, foreboding presence.

The wedding guests stepped to either side of the circle, making a path to the other end where Jake and Hamani and all the elders waited. Edward and I walked forward, my pulse beginning to race as I surveyed the scene. Edward looked to Hamani, and then Jake, and then back to Hamani, keeping his eyes on him until we reached where they all stood.

A few feet beyond us, the fire blazed into the night sky, sparks rising up and dying out under the stars. Jake and Edward shook hands, a simple gesture that brought me a surprising amount of comfort. I briefly flashed back to my father doing that with Zack. For a moment I thought I could see him out of the corner of my eye, mixed in with all the guests, but as I turned my head around, I saw only the gathering of people and the surrounding bear party, and the Cullens as they moved toward us, positioning themselves just behind Edward.

I wasn’t sure what to expect next, and I shifted my weight between my feet nervously as we waited for Mercy to finish her song. Her eyes were closed as she strummed sad chords, lost as she was in some lyric about the creation of homes and how our lives cast form to the future. As she was finishing the chorus, she opened her eyes and looked at Edward, and then me, smiling sadly. Then she suddenly stopped singing mid-lyric and gaped at me. Edward snapped his head around to give her an impossible look and then turned and looked at me, something desperate in his eyes.

“What is it?” I whispered.

“Edward Cullen," Quil Senior said before Edward had a chance to answer, his voice booming out over the crowd, "the Cold One to whom Bella, also known among the Ani Tsa' gu hi as Hala, has been unnaturally bound, do you hereby relinquish your attachment and free her—mind, body and soul to be returned to the tribe, to be joined with Jacob Black?”

“No,” Edward said, a wild look about him as he pulled me behind him. “I can’t do that.”

“What are you doing?” I asked, desperately.

“Bella,” he said as he turned and faced me. “You’re pregnant.”

I gasped and dropped my bouquet. As soon as he said it I knew it was true. I held my hands flat over my belly and felt a surge of energy, a tingle in my brain that spread through my nervous system as I recognized a new life force growing within me. Edward's eyes were soft and filled with unexpected joy, wonder, and some confusion before they narrowed with concern as we both sensed the tension growing among the crowd, quickly nearing a pitch beyond Jasper's ability to project his calming energy.

I threw my arms around Edward's neck and felt tears begin to well, but I couldn't let myself be overcome with the intensity of the euphoria I felt coming on, so strangely mixed as it was with the fear that something tragic was about to happen. Edward put his arms around me but then stiffened defensively as the din of confusion began rippling through the party.

"We have to get out of here," I whispered. "Now."

"I'm working on it," he said, glancing around.

An angry murmur rose from the crowd, most of whom did not know or understand the consequences of the impossible reality that had just been revealed to us. Carlisle looked confused, but he signaled to the rest of the Cullens and they formed a defensive line behind us.

"Bella's pregnant?" Charlie said. "Really?"

“What the hell?” Jacob said.

"How can it be?" Sue asked.

“Who's baby is it?” Anna Marie asked, a worried look crossing her face.

“It’s mine.” Edward turned and scowled at her.

"No," Jake said. "You can't get her pregnant. It's not possible. It has to be mine."

"You know that's not true," Edward snapped at him.

"It has to be Edward's," I said. "But how…"

"Hala," Edward said, making eye contact with Hamani, noting the angry expression on his face. "It must have something to do with Hala. I think she changed me in some way when I drank her blood."

I looked around, certain that I would see Hala now. If there was any sensible time for her to make an appearance, this would have been it. But she wasn't anywhere. Not in the crowd, not by the fire, not out near the water, and not in it.

I was suddenly reminded of the very first time Edward had made love to me on the beach at Kalaloch. The heat that erupted from him at the culmination of our lovemaking had been different from any other time we were together. Had Hala had taken his ability to give immortality in exchange for the ability to give life?

Across the circle I saw Charlie looking concerned as he tried to maneuver himself closer to where I stood, but there was a barrier of confused, stirring bears now positioning themselves between where the Cullens surrounded us and the rest of the guests.

Anna Marie turned to Hamani and explained the new development and I watched nervously as his face grew agitated. He looked at me wide-eyed, and then he looked at Edward, his face contorting, nostrils flaring, clearly enraged. The bears began to grumble and close in on where we stood.

"Stay behind me, Bella," Edward said, positioning himself defensively in front of me. "I'm not sure what they'll do."

"No," I said. I was done being intimidated and I was done placating with deals and promises and ceremonies that I didn't believe in. It was time to stand up. I slipped past Edward and walked right up to Hamani. "This is Hala's doing," I explained. Edward came and stood next to me. "Hala gave him this power."

Without warning, Hamani exploded, phased into the big black bear right there in my face and roared at me like an irate father losing his temper. Edward leapt and pinned him to the ground, choking him—I'd never seen Edward so terrifyingly aggressive.

"Edward, don't hurt him!" I yelled. He turned and gave me a perplexed, pained look before he let go, and was then immediately pounced on by two bears who dragged him away from Hamani. Emmett and Carlisle lunged at them, but were quickly cut off as more bears overran us. "Jacob do something!" I yelled.

"What do you expect me to do?" he said, angrily. "I have no authority over them now."

"Jake, please," I pleaded.

Jake held my eyes for a moment before gritting his teeth and phasing into his wolf body. The pack immediately followed suit, flanking him as he tried to intervene where the two bears were dragging Edward closer to the fire. Hamani roared to his feet, a battle cry to the bears, superior in number to all the rest of us. They closed in, teeth bared and glistening. Alice, Esme, Mercy and Rosalie surrounded me as Jasper, Emmett and Carlisle rushed to Edward’s aid. Emmett brought his clasped hands down hard like a hammer on the head of a bear, dropping it to the ground before leading Carlisle and Jasper foward to Edward, who was now held by four huge bears.

Hamani knocked Jasper down as he sprang through the vampires, a great paw swiping at Edward’s head as the other bears pulled on his limbs. I screamed as I watched Edward struggle in their grasp, the fire blazing behind him. Hamani caught Edward’s head in his open mouth and pulled, forcing it to turn grotesquely far. Edward roared fiercely and then groaned in pain as I heard the hideous scraping sound of his head being twisted to the breaking point. Something snapped inside of me and then I just saw white, like I was blind in a blizzard.

#

From the bottom of my soul, I let loose an unholy roar, loud and powerful enough to immobilize the entire Quileute nation, the entire population of black bears of North America, maybe the entire world. It felt as though every single living creature momentarily stilled. I thought for a moment even the tide had stopped pounding the shore.

Edward lay on the ground, broken, his neck badly torn and his shoulders separated from his body, just a few steps from the flames that threatened to end him for good. Hamani and the four other bears stared at me and I glared dangerously at them. I felt the mixture of surprise and reverence in their posture as they began to back away from Edward.

I felt like I was underwater, like I was running in place, inside a nightmare as I moved to Edward and stood protectively over him. I put my face to his neck and saw the fracture, and then watched as it quickly repaired itself. I could hear the hum of his life force surging and marveled as I felt his shoulders reattached themselves beneath the fabric of his clothing.

Bella, I can hear you. I can finally hear you. I heard him say, but I hadn’t said anything—and neither had he. He hadn’t moved his lips, hadn’t made any audible sound.

Edward sat up and studied me. He tentatively reached for me and then hesitated before he stroked my cheek with the back of his hand. Then he moved his hand down over my belly and I felt a soft fluttering at his touch and remembered what I carried there. Something more than me, more than him, more than us. Something commonplace and miraculous and eternal.

I wanted to speak to him, to ask him if he understood what had happened, but I couldn't find the words. Bewildered, I looked down at myself and saw white. White, soft fur that covered large, gentle paws, strong legs and a soft belly. I felt disoriented, confused. I gave a small whimper as I tried to speak again and could not.

You're—you're her, Edward said silently. You're Hala.

No… Edward? It's me, Bella.

Of course you're Bella, he said. But you're also Hala.

Then I felt it. I was me and I was her, all at once. As I adjusted to this new body, this new identity, I could feel Hala's connection to her people, the bears. I could see the way between the worlds. I felt centuries of her experience. I had her memories. And I had her body.

Do you have Cherokee lineage? Edward asked.

No. Italian.

He shook his head in disbelief and smiled. You're full of surprises.

In the corners of my vision, the light began to flicker. Beneath the rising moon everything shone like it was lit from within. I turned and looked at the assembled party and startled as I observed whole new dimensions. It was like I'd acquired Mercy's gift for seeing inside of people, but it went beyond that. I could see outside their bodies, inside their hearts, their minds. For every bear there was a human inside, almost like a body inside a hologram. And for every human, there was a translucent animal form encasing it, even the vampires. Every being present wore an elaborate, etheric costume, their bodies seemed to project a deeper, richer version of themselves into a dimension I could now perceive. And they all stood transfixed, silent, staring at me as I took in the strangeness of my vision.

Hamani approached us and I crouched defensively over Edward.

See? I knew you would remember. It wasn't Hamani's voice, but his feelings that I heard.

Don't even think about touching him again. I thought at him.

You claimed the Cold One as your mate? he asked. I prefer the wolf.

Too bad, I said. He is the father of my child and there will be peace with him and his family.

Fine, then. Let it be known. And in his heart, Hamani was smiling broadly, blissful, ignoring my own hostility and doubt with a certainty that could only come from centuries of experience.

Jacob, still in wolf form approached us and bowed down like I was some sort of royalty. And then every wolf and every bear lined up in rows behind Jake and put their heads to the ground, in a gesture of deference. Upon realizing just how much power I'd been given, I shifted uncomfortably, wishing a quiet return to my regular human body.

“She doesn’t understand,” Edward said to him. “She hasn’t realized yet.”

No, I get it now. I thought at Edward.

You do? he thought back.

Yes—I have her memories and I remember what happened. You drank Hala's blood at Lake Crescent and then she left her body and took residence in you—in your venom. The first night you bit me—when you thought you almost killed me—she entered me, too.

Really?

Yes. This is the reason you didn't kill me that night after you drank all my blood. That's why you can't kill me. And it's why you can't turn me into a vampire.

Why?

Because I can't die, so I can't be undead.

You can't die?

If I could die, don't you think I'd be dead by now?

You have a point there. He smiled so wide, I felt tears come to my eyes and get stuck in my fur. Are you okay?

Yes, but… holy shit, Edward, I can't believe you bit me and turned me into a Kermode bear.

Well, I can't believe I got you pregnant.

This thought made me want to smile and cry and leap into his arms. I want to change back to my other body now.

Don’t change yet, Jacob thought. You command us all right now. You should get the peace treaty together first.

Wait—Jake, you can hear me?

Yeah, of course I can hear you. You're a spirit guardian. We can all hear you.

Well, that's good to know. I paused uncomfortably, making an inventory of my thoughts since I'd turned into a bear. Even the humans and the vampires?

No, just the shape-shifters. You can hear all of them, too, if they project to you.

Do you still want to unify the tribes?

Of course. Bella, you're the spirit guardian here and you pull rank. I'll do whatever you want.

You'll make sure the bears keep the peace with the Cullens?

Bella, you don't need me to do that. You can do it yourself. You're in charge now.

I knelt down and put my nose to the back of Jake’s neck and gave him a soft lick. He stepped back and looked intently into my eyes.

I can't believe it, Jacob thought at me, and at Edward. I had no idea.

Neither did I, I thought at him.

Thank you, Jake, Edward said. For everything you did for Bella. And for me.

I looked around and saw my father, Sue, Billy, Quil and all of the Cullens gathered off to the side, quietly watching our silent discussion. How strange, I thought, the scene would look to an outsider: the vampire with his ursine mate consulting wordlessly with the wolf leader under the stars. It would have been a good moment to say a few words, but I couldn’t say them in my animal form. So instead I projected what I felt in my heart.

There was a feeling of power down in my chest, starting in my belly and rippling out through my limbs. A sense of peace permeated the gathering, not from Jasper this time, but from my own heart. My eyes caught my father’s briefly, and in them I saw not horror or shock or confusion, as I might have once expected. Instead of those things, I saw understanding. And I saw pride.

Edward and I walked out of the marriage circle and stood at the edge of the water. The bears gathered around us in a crescent formation, an army of subjects, awaiting some directive. As soon as I had the desire, they approached. I could see this bear shape wouldn’t be one to have second thoughts with. I’d have to learn to trust my instincts.

I told them there would be peace between the Cullens, the Quileute and the Ani Tsa' gu hi, that my love and I would come among them now and again. Each bear came and in turn lowered their heads before Edward, a gesture of their understanding of one unalterable fact: the vampire before them was my chosen mate. When every last bear in attendance had acknowledged this, I gave blessings and said goodbye.

Hamani, I called, as he turned to leave. I am sorry my brothers and sister were lost in the sea.

They are not lost, Hala. They are among us.

They didn't die?

We are, all of us here, beings of light and we cannot die. But we can forget.

Forget?

Forget what we come from. Forget who we really are.

Then they left, led in a long procession by Hamani and the rest of the Ani Tsa' gu hi elders, now all comfortably back inside their bear bodies. They walked into the woods, to the east, where they could now go back to their bear lives, secure in the knowledge that their spiritual sister had returned to them, not unaltered, but evolved.

Don’t change back yet. I heard Edward’s thought just as I’d realized I still didn’t know how to get back into human form. Save it for me.

I would be naked when I shifted back, of course. And I agreed, spirit guide or not, I wasn’t comfortable with the whole public nudity thing the way Jake and Leah and the rest of the wolves were. But I really had to get out of there because I was beginning to feel decidedly less deity-like and a lot more Bella-ish.

The rest of those gathered, Charlie and Sue, the Cullens and the Quileute elders came to where Edward and I stood and surrounded us. Charlie came up to Edward and shook his hand.

"Congratulations, son," he said.

Edward choked up and squeezed Charlie's hand, a little too hard by the grimace he tried to hide. Charlie smiled broadly and gave him a shoulder pat and then came and scratched me on the neck like I was a cat. Carlisle came over and gripped Edward around the shoulders and hugged him, his face nearly contorted with emotion and then Edward was bombarded with a flurry of vampire hugs and kisses from his sisters, Mercy, Esme, and shoulder punches and ribbing from Emmett and Jasper.

"Bella's a bear?" Rosalie said. "Really? A bear?"

"Bear queen," Edward corrected her. "She's more like a goddess, actually, if you want to get technical."

"That's why I couldn't see you," Alice said, throwing her arms around my neck. "You are really cute like that. But your dress is ruined, I'm afraid."

"Why doesn't she smell like one?" Rosalie said.

"Because she smells like her," Edward said.

"This is just incredible," Esme said, a catch in her voice. "It's a miracle—I'm so happy I wish I could cry."

Mercy studied me carefully. "She's not having a baby," she said.

"What?" Esme said, shocked. I would have been more nervous at her tease, but it was hard to worry much about anything with Edward smiling the way he was.

Mercy smirked and announced, "She's having twins."

Twins? Twin what? I asked, nervously, wondering if what I carried inside of me was something even classified by medical science or known in mythology.

"Twin boys," Edward said, nearly bursting with happiness. "Plain old human boys."

"How can she be carrying human babies inside a bear body?" Rosalie asked.

"The animal body is a projection," Sue explained. "That's how shape-shifting works. It's a gift of altering reality."

"Like enchantment?" Rosalie asked.

"Sort of," Sue said. "But if you feel her, she's got real fur."

"It's soft too," Alice said, scratching my ears.

"Holy shit—twins," I heard Jake say, now back in his human body. "Congrats, grandpa," he said, slapping Charlie on the back.

"Damn, I'm really going to be a grandfather," Charlie said, his eyes shining in the moonlight.

"They will never believe me back at the department," Anna Marie said, shaking her head. "I may have to submit a paper on this."

Edward I'm a little… I need a moment. I want to get out of here, I said to him.

Okay, sweetheart, he thought to me, and then he turned to everyone else. "Well thanks so much, everyone, for all the love and support. We've had a lovely time, but it's getting late and we'd better be on our way now."

"Wait," Sue said. "Where are you going? She needs prenatal vitamins, a doctor's appointment at least."

"Maui," Edward said. "We'll be in touch soon." Then he put his hand on my back, his cool fingers lovingly stroking the fur there and he thought, Reckoner is in slip twelve at the marina. I’ll race you.

Race me?

Yeah, I want to see how fast a bear goddess can run.

I hadn’t even considered whether I could run as fast as a shape-shifted bear, which was nearly as fast as vampire, or maybe even faster if the vampire wasn’t Edward Cullen.

I gave Charlie a quick nuzzle, and then when Edward was distracted saying his goodbyes, I took off like lightning across the beach, darting into the woods, not cheating as much as a head start, as I’d argue later. Then Edward was right behind me. It had been exhilarating to move at this speed while riding Edward’s back, but it was downright euphoric to move like this on my own. It felt faster than the speed of sound, closer to the speed of thought. No human eyes would have been able to see us move this way. They might feel us like a strong breeze, but our forms would be elusive.

I saw Reckoner and slowed a little, and enjoyed the strange looks from the few lingering onlookers on the dock as I leaped onto the ship’s deck. I landed with a loud thud and cringed as I heard my claws scratching as I slid several feet.

You’ll pay for that, he said, as he jumped into the cockpit and landed perfectly steady. And no, I didn’t let you win. But know this—for eternity I will tell the kids that I did.

I climbed to the very tip of the bow and lay down on the deck, hanging my head over as Edward motored us away from the dock. Those few tourists out for a moonlit stroll must have seen me as some sort of exotic pet and I laughed at how strange that perspective was now, stuck inside that mundane, unimaginative universe where the fairy tales were all left to the books and picture shows and the retelling for children. I don’t know how I looked, but I felt like I was smiling.

I gazed at the water rushing past Reckoner’s hull, hypnotic and rhythmic as we rocked into the waves. Once we got out of the harbor we moved faster than any small ship could possibly go under wind power alone. Were the sails bewitched? We picked up speed and moved over crested waves like we were hovering over glass. Something lifted and propelled us forward, far away from land, far beyond my comprehension of simple math and physics and the mechanics of watercraft, as elegant as they were.

I enjoyed one thing above all else about my new-found identity—I could hear the contents of Edward’s mind. He was back behind me in the cockpit, setting a course due west this time, for Maui. There was a midwife there with an unusual skill set he wanted me to see. There was a justice of the peace and another beach in his mind. He envisioned something small and private but it would be official and legal too. I had no objection, though I didn’t know what authority the state of Hawaii had on the eternal, unbreakable bonds we shared growing in my belly.

I pondered how to change back into human form and could hear him laughing behind me. Don’t tell me, I thought to him. I need to be able to do this on my own.

He immediately thought about vampire baseball. I didn’t think to ask why.

To become a bear I just reacted in a moment of desperation and suddenly there I was, seeing double and covered in fur. What was the way back? Was there a secret code? An incantation? A magic potion? It was embarrassing to be a shape shifter, never mind a spirit guide, and not have some of the basic skills required.

“Bella, come here,” Edward called, out loud, from the cockpit.

I crept slowly back, my head down, trying to block him from hearing my frustrated thoughts. I had clearly failed, judging by the smirk on his face.

“So you haven't figured it out yet?”

Just give me a small hint.

“Okay,” he leveled his eyes at mine. “It’s just us out here now. You can let go.”

Let go? Did he mean stop worrying? He couldn’t be serious. Did he understand the day I’d just had? Did he get how close I’d come to losing him forever and ever? Wasn’t he at all nervous about becoming a parent? Did he realize how easy it was to mess up a kid under normal everyday circumstances, never mind twin boys who had a vampire for a father and a spirit bear for a mother and a cop for a grandfather?

If I had to stop worrying in order to become human again, we were going to turn a lot of heads in Maui when we went for that marriage license. Unless he wanted to get married at the zoo.

“So, do you give up?” he asked.

No, I thought at him. I can figure this one out. You can’t always be with me, you know? I have to learn to deal with things on my own. What if I get upset in traffic or at a parent-teacher conference or something weird happens and I'm suddenly like this? I have to be able to handle this. I have to…

“Okay,” he said, interrupting my thoughts. “That’s enough.” He gave me a long, hard look and a crooked smile and then thought, You make a beautiful bear, Bella, but I can't fuck you in that body.

Then Edward looked longingly into my eyes and took a step forward, picturing in his mind, in vivid detail, my naked body before him on the beach in Kalaloch. For just an instant I felt what he felt in that moment and a torrent of emotion poured over me, into me, through me, and I breathed it sharply in as I felt his hands moving over my pale naked, human skin.

“Edward,” I said, breathless just as his lips came full force down onto my own. I really did let go then, allowed my spirit to dissolve into his, to hover all around us and float as it might upward into the night sky, dancing over the fading moon.

I watched from that distant point in the sky like an omniscient observer might as we lingered there. Reckoner sailed ever on to the west, never minding the faint breeze, disappearing into the horizon. Watching from afar, one might think that it wasn’t Maui Edward had set a course for but perhaps the moon itself, or if not the moon then the sun, or some other fascinating and impossible location where beasts and monsters and women and men all came together in the tales of creation and hope.

But if not, then Maui would do just fine.

The End

83 comments:

  1. Thank you, so so so so so much, for reading and taking this trip with me. Love you guys.

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  2. i don't have words enough. thank you.

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  3. Oh my, Myg! Thanx for such a great, unique story...hope you'll write more;) How fitting that you finished it in #Forks w/ all the Twitards!
    wv: uptingl - how OB makes me feel:)

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  4. Well I am bawling waiting here at the hair salon and so far I only read your intro. I only clicked by to check if you guys were staying out of trouble and jail. Gotta go read now, laters baby!

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  5. HOLY shit! Wasn't expecting any of that! You are the bear goddess, Myg! absolutely beautiful!

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  6. Wow!!! just WOW!!! That was an amazing unpredictable ending!! I had no idea how you were going to get us out of that mess, but great job!! I loved it This is now one of my favorite fan fics ever written :)

    I hope there's an outtake or two :) pretty please with a cherry on top!!!

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  7. Myg!! WOW, I'm really impressed and my heart is very full, but in a good way.

    I think its very fitting that you published the fin in Forks, way to go!

    This was an amazing story, you did a fantastic job mixing really deep moving emotions with fuckhawt sexytimes. And so many surprises! I sure was glad Bella finally stood up and told them how it was gonna be--I was waiting for her to do that, I kept wondering why she hadn't, I guess she hadn't been pushed far enough before that night.

    I wish you all the best, I really do. I'm sending you lots of smoochies (of course in the boochies)!! and I'll be thinking about those outtakes and epi you hinted at...

    Thank you for taking us on this journey with you. All my love,
    M~

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  8. Oooh, Myg! *Big Huge HUG*

    The dedication to your sister is beautiful and your feelings for her show through in this wonderful story, esp. in these last few chapters.

    As I've said before, this story is a roller coaster of the ultimate kind. Down to the last you had me laughing, crying, shocked, amazed and on-the-edge-of-my-seat excited. I love, I mean, LOVE these characters and the crazy things you've made them do.

    Jacob & Edward - I love their dedication and ability to love. Whether it's their tribe, their family or their Bella they are ever unwavering. Cut from the same cloth, they are. I've fallen in love with them both.

    (Osa) Bella - What's not to love about this very human woman? She's flawed and broken and feisty and determined and so very deserving of the love around her as are we all.

    Zack - Thanks for being Bella's first love.

    Derek - Derek who?

    Myg, this was truly an amazing gift you have given us. Thank you so much.

    *nod and wink* to Mr. Myg for helping Myg pursue her dreams.

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  9. Myg... Thank you so much for this beautiful story!

    This was just...I don't have enough words to describe it!

    You, Mr. Myg and the rest of the twitarded-gang made me cry so many times, made me laugh and made me happy... Thank you so much!

    I wish u all the best! And I hope this wasn't the last thing we hear/read from you!

    Hugs and lots of love from Germany!

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  10. Beautiful, Myg--a gift to all of us who are your readers now, and those who will be, like your little niece, when they are ready.
    You have enriched the Twilight universe immeasurably. Even better, on another level--All the fairy tales and wonder of our lost youth are gathered in here, and returned to us, along with a story that only people who have lived awhile, and suffered, can begin to understand.
    You have a true gift, seeing all of this. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

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  11. Myg! I love, love, LOVE Osa Bella! Great job! Thank you so much for sharing! Have a blast in Forks! :D

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  12. What a surprise! Thank you for the story AND thank you for posting it during hiatus in Forks. Sweet!

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  13. I wanted to reply immediately but I can’t RUSH reading this ending! So I thought I’d comment as I read along… oh yeah. But then all thoughts pretty much flew out of my head as I read, insatiable.

    God, the authors note just about did me in, girl, and we hadn’t even gotten to the opening of the chapter! It’s been pretty damn cool to follow this story with you – my first time reading the entire fic as the author posts – and pretty amazing to see how Twilight helped you manage your overwhelming love and grief for your sister, as it helped me with my love for and loss of my mom. You’ve shown how strong we all are, Myg. Amanda would be proud.

    So Bella discovered letting go is key. A "tale of creation and hope" indeed.... *this* is Osa Bella, and everything and everyone and every moment that went into it. I'm just speechless. What an exhilarating ending. My heart is pounding.. I need to regroup and reread and... let it all in.

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  14. Un-fuckingly-believable, Myg! I had to know what happened so I cheated and skimmed through. I'm going to reread it now that I know the ending. Yeah, I cheat that way. I really, really, really hope that you write more fics. Osa Bella is easily the best one I've ever read and I've read quite a few (thanks to that h00r JJ for getting me hooked with 15-Step). Thanks so much for sharing this with your fellow Twitards!!!!!!

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  15. Thanks Myg! That's not at all what I thought was going to happen, and I didn't think there was any way you could end it that would satisfy my hopes for every character involved ... but you did. Thank your beautiful words and all your hard work. Have fun in Forks!

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  16. ~Did he realize how easy it was to mess up a kid under normal everyday circumstances, never mind twin boys who had a vampire for a father and a spirit bear for a mother and a cop for a grandfather?~ priceless, quintessential Bella right there :)
    Thank you for this story Myg. I'm not eloquent enough for more than that.

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  17. Absolutely breathtaking, Myg. You should be unbelievably proud of yourself. Thank you so much for this beautiful story, it has truly been a gift. Words can't express how much I'm going to miss seeing your updates. Thank god for outtakes and the possibility of an epi. This is a Twilight I never would have imagined, and yet I love it every bit as much. I love your mature, sexy Edward and your tough and flawed Bella. Thank you Thank you and have the time of your life in FOOOOOORKS!

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  18. Just a shout from the base back in Jersey--Thanks to everyone for reading. You, the readers, make it at least twice as worth writing, and it made Myg a happy woman to have so many people share her love of Twilight and her obsession (compulsion?) with this fanfic. And if Myg's happy, I'm happy.

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  19. Myg --
    Marvelous, marvelous ending. I just had to read it before onight's get-together. I didn't know how you were going to pull it off, but you did -- thoroughly satisfying ending. And so very powerful reading it after having just been at the very beach earlier this afternoon! I could feel the wind, smell the sea, almost be there. Thanks for making the huge effort to finish it up for the trip.
    xoxo

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  20. *closes eyes and exhales slowly while smiling*

    Now that ... was a Story. i seem to have lost the power of speech but it's a pretty good trade for having shared this ride with you.
    But like a good roller coaster, i wanna ride again. More more more. Outtakes. Epilogue(s). Please to be providing them. If you think this is over and everyone's going to just find their purses and go home, i have 3 words for you: Osa. Bella. 2.
    Thank you, thank you, thank you for sharing this dark gem with us. i loved it hard.

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  21. thank you Myg, for such a beautiful story. @getinthecar- you're absolutely right. a fairy tale for the mature, including the pain of loss and exhilaration of true love. my heart breaks for Jacob, but I'm glad that he at least found peace for his tribe. beautiful. just beautiful.

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  22. Myg, I love you. Somethin' fierce. I can't even put into words what it's meant to take this journey with you. We've had a lot of good laughs & a lot of good cries. I'm so proud of you for sticking to your story when I was screaming, "Godammit, Myg! Fucking kill Derek already!" (You're just saving that for the epi, right? Right?!)

    Thanks for sharing this with us, dear. Mwah!

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  23. OMG Myg that was beautiful. It wasn't rushed or forced, it was just perfect!

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  24. Absofuckinglutely incredibly unexpected!! I felt for sure as I watched the side page marker fall closer to the end of the story, there'd be an edward/bella/jake mass suicide! Just no way to guess that happening! Thank you so much for taking so much time out of your mommy/wife/and especially sister life to provide us such escapism. Awesome doesn't come close. Hail to the Authoress/Goddess/Queen of Fan Fic!!!

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  25. Myg, truly, thank you so much.

    Everything that has to be said has been said above.

    One of the best fanfics I have ever read. That is all.

    Bella the Bear Queen FTMFW.

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  26. Myg, I can't thank you enough for this beautiful story you have given us. Please, PLEASE, keep writing anything at all. Much love!

    <3

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  27. *Applauding* BRAVOOOOOOO!!!!!
    To quote the Beatles: And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make. The story of your sister reminded me of that line. Through out the creation of Osa Bella, came your sisters story. So, in a weird way, I feel like she was part of the story. Thanks, Myg, for a fantastic story. It will forever be in my favorite files. =)

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  28. Myg - absolutely awesome story (I wrote a longer review on FFn, so I won't duplicate here)

    Mr. Myg - you are a credit to husbands everywhere

    Everyone else even remotely involved in getting this story out - THANK YOU.

    Let's start the chant now... EPI... EPI... EPI... EPI...

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  29. Well done! The best word to describe your big ending is satisfying. All my questions were answered and I’m happy with the Goddess. You brought da bears and you came hard. Sorry for your troubles. Bless you and family. You never know who you can touch and calm and sooth with your words. You helped me through a difficult time. Thanks for the wonderful read. Hmm ...of ‘course there are those twins…wonder what their story will be? Wonder if Jacob will get a happy ending?
    MMinerva ;^)

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  30. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE. It was so good Myg. So rich and beautiful, animated with something deep and true and archetypal. I loved it so much. Thank you very much for it. You are a very talented writer, and I will be delighted to read anything you write.

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  31. what a beautiful story! Myg, you are amazing. thank you for sharing Osa Bella with us, it's truly one of the best written and most imaginative fanfics -hell, it's one of the best stories - that I've read!! I laughed, I cried, I was always wanting more! now I'm going to go back and read it all again from the beginning.

    YOU are the goddess Myg!! I hope you take great pride in this accomplishment - you deserve much kudos for this fanfuckingtastic story!! I look forward to reading any and all future works that you share with us.

    XO

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  32. Wow Myg, you drew me in and weaved (wove?!)your magic. Thankyou for a truly beautiful story!

    I'll miss the intencity of waiting for the next OB update. So please do write again very very soon. EPI...?? Pleeeease...

    I'm with you @lovelybrutal 'i have 3 words for you: Osa. Bella. 2.'

    Thankyou again Myg, for sharing your story xoxo

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  33. Love you Myg, already mourning the end of OB.

    I had to tell you that Icy completely mentioned all you twats in her chapter notes for MOTU II's update this morning!! Check it out --

    http://50shades.com/?p=1397

    Miss you all (how is that possible?!?!) Good luck getting all your hungover asses on planes and home!!

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  34. amazing, so sad that this has ended

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  35. Oh, Myg, sooo beautiful! I can't think of the last time I was so engrossed in a story...probably Breaking Dawn!
    I loved this story so much. I will miss this Bella and Edward just as much, if not more, than the originals. I know I've said it before but I am sad that there is no way to get this story published AND made into an awesome movie. SIGH... I am passing this story on to all my friends, whether they read Twilight or not.
    Thank you, thank you. And Mr. Myg, too. Keep us posted on your forays into non-FF so we can help you get rich and famous!
    xoxo

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  36. Myg - You are AMAZING! I loved the ending to OB. I have to say I wasn't expecting any of it! It is a little bittersweet though, knowing that it's over. I will miss your OB updates!

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  37. I have no words Myg. I hope a very heart-felt thank you will suffice. Really, thank you for Osa Bella. God bless you and all your loved-ones.

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  38. That was perfection wrapped in gorgeous topped by amazing! Thank you thank you my dearest Myg! I read it with my heart in my throat and tears in my eyes. Thank you so much for an ending that brought them together and gave them peace and hope for eternity! Much love, Liz

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  39. Well, I'm still in Forks, my bags are packed and I'm getting myself ready to head back to Jersey. Wanted to sit here quietly and read your comments and write something to you from Forks, but god damn it, my eyes are way too blurry with tears to even properly see the computer screen, let alone think of something to say that would really capture how I'm feeling.

    I had to write Osa Bella, and I would have written it even if all it ever did was live on my hard drive, never seeing the light of day. But you have NO idea how your investment in it has shaped what it became. I worked my ass off to make this story what it is now--and so did all of those people I mentioned in my A/N. I worked on it more than any reasonable human probably would, given it's a fanfic and not something I can sell to a publisher.

    But I really wanted it to be worth your time and investment--and mine.
    So, I hope you can begin understand what your participation in this story has meant to me. Thank you for coming into my world and being a part of my life. It is so much richer and more intense and full because of all of you.

    Yes, I'm going to write more. And soon. I just hope whatever I come up with next, it's worthy of all of you.

    Love always,
    Myg

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  40. beautiful story! I loved it so much! I'll miss it!

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  41. Wow! I don't have words, but I can tell you that I feel it in my chest. There's a heaviness, but a lightness at the same time. No way did I see that coming, but it was perfect. Thank you.

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  42. Huh... Well one negative opinion in this sea of love for Osa Bella might not hurt. Hurting is not my intention at all, I just want to give my opinion here. OB started out pretty epicly, yet somehow couldn't uphold it's own epicness towards the end. I felt that all the coming and going, the yes-no, yes-no yes-no, fight or not fight and marriage no marriage...It's like we never stood on firm ground. It might've been the whole point, to keep us doubtful, but with a doubtful plot came a doubtful ending. I mean.... Pregnant or not pregnant, even at the very last minute I was feeling this instability and swinging, like a Jenga tower where the top begins to crumble and it might fall in any direction, instead of standing high, tall and mighty.

    I'm not saying I hated OB, but there is one reader who is left with a bitter taste. Loved it at the beginning tho. I can appreciate the work put into this and I'm glad it helped you through difficult times.

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  43. Myg-
    I didn't see it coming! The ending was soooo good. I loved the entire story and was happy to see how it all played out. Just amazing. From one Jersey Girl to another, welcome home girlfriend!!

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  44. I can't believe Bella really is Hala! I thought Hala might emerge from the ocean or something else at the end, but OMG MYG that was amazing. And such a lovely closing sentiment. Thanks for a beautiful and moving story.

    wv = fersucle. . . what Edward would have been stuck doing to Bella if she couldn't change back to her human form! Yuck!

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  45. "And if Myg's happy, I'm happy." Well, I was doing pretty good getting through the comments until I read this, this dude slays me. I'm all a slobbering blubbery mess, what an awesome husband you have!
    Everything that should be said, has been said. You are amazing, your characters are amazing, your plot was unbelievably original.
    It's just all genius really!

    Isn't life strange? I was living this life; a teacher, a wife a mother, feeling totally whole and content and then in July of 2009 I read Twilight and it knocked me on my ass. This quirky piece of juv fiction, rocked my world and I will never be the same. Soon after I found Snarky and Jenny and felt so much better that I wasn't the "only one". And through them, I have "met" all these wonderful women (and some men) including you Myg and my life continues to change and become more multi dimensional. I didn't think I needed anything else nor did I feel I had room to put something / someone else, but now I know that is not true. I can not even begin to say what this silly twilight obsession has brought to my life.

    Thank you Myg for sharing this story and a part of you with us. Thank you patient Mr Myg and thank you twin muse myglets!
    mwah....
    Kelly
    PS, bring on something I can pay for! :)

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  46. I was going to post on FF, but we met on Twitarded, and this is home.

    When Bella and Edward went back to save the bears, you prickled my conscience. Thanks for that.

    I love cliffies, and twists, and I really wasn't too worried. Somehow, I knew that you could not separate Bella and Edward.

    To put them through that worry, to unite mythology with their past and future, that's some powerful storytelling, Myg. You've told us that you want to write a story of your own, with your own characters. Lady, when you do so, the readers will be there for you. In droves.

    But what really woke me up was you A/N. Working through the pain of loss by writing this story really got to me. You are an such an unselfish person to bare your soul. You are Bella, the brave one, who taught me that pure pain can be transformed into love. That's quite a journey to undertake.

    Saying thank you for sharing is rather inadequate under the circumstances. I wish you a mended heart, and peace to your family.

    With love.

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  47. Myg, that was beautiful. Knowing where your heart was when you wrote it makes it that much richer. If I had to pick a favorite part in the entire tale, it's how you described the moment Bella shifted to Hala. The pain of watching her love being dragged to his doom altering her, not just emotionally or psychologically, but physically and spiritually. And culminating in a roar that shook souls! That's a powerful woman.

    Congratulations on finishing, and thank you very much for writing it. I won't soon forget this amazing ending!

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  48. "You make a beautiful bear, Bella, but I can't fuck you in that body."

    I just....I have no words. I'm a motherfucking MUTE.

    Myg - meeting you in Forks was magical. You have such an amazing spirit and when you combine that with your inagination and creative talent, you get a truly INTELLIGENT, and wholly enchanting story that has truly touched so many of us in ways we could never have imagined.

    Wait? Did I say I was mute?

    I lied.

    I have these words:

    I LOVE OSA BELLA AND I LOVE YOU.

    Mama Cougar

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  49. Hey Myg, I read your last chapter the night before last, & have been thinking about it ever since. In the end all I can say is that I found this extraordinary, & unexpected, in the whole new world you conjured up from our known one, for starters. I loved the fact that Bella finally joined the supernatural as a powerful unique individual, not as arm-candy for Edward. Thanks also for it not descending into some porn fest (sorry Twitards :)) after a promising start, as some fics do. You can really write, so keep on, though I hope & pray no more pain is needed to spur you on. All I ask in your outtakes is a little happiness for my favourite wolf...

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  50. ok, can i be greedy and ask for an epov? just to kill us all again pretty please? kthanksbye :D

    p.s.
    i love you twitards

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  51. Myg…myg…myg…I have been a twitarded and Osa Bella stalker for the past year or so … not like “I’m gonna find you and rape you and cover you in plastic and call you sister susan”… I could if you wanted… but that’s for anther day… I have been stalking twitarded since… well at least since the “My life is like Twilight” post … and this is the first time I am posting…and I just wanted to say… that I hate you… I hate you for changing my social life… for changing my love life… for changing my bedtime… my drinking habits…even my bowel movements… I have never laughed, cried, sqeeed, melted, fallen in love and shit my self with excitement so much as I have while reading Osa Bella… my panties will never be the same… nor will hiking in the woods or cabins... or the beach…. Or driving my car… or how I make love…I am unconditionally and irrevocably in love with Osa Bella and subsequently with you. Thank you so very much for making my twilife better… I literally would sit at work and read new posts or wake up in the middle of the night to check and see if there was a new chapter. My Boyfriend would laugh at me for squirming on the couch with anticipation of your next chapter or stare and shake his head as I giggled or freaked out about little details… especially details like oh I don’t know… Edward and Bella… naked! I really truly wish that Osa Bell was published so I could put it on my shelf and read it whenever I want a good cry or laugh or shit… I’ll take either…all are good… twitarded has taught me that… and thank you myg… thank you so much for making my life so much more thrilling… if even for just an hour or two… but damn you to heck for ripping it out of my hands and heart with an ending and ending when there is so much more I want to know and see and love! sigh but as the saying goes all good things must come to an end… even if we fight … violently to make them stay…thank you myg… for changing my twilife… thank you for making me WANT to read... Please never forget the lives you have touched through your written word... and probably your filthy little hands… we love you… I love you!
    -ash

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  52. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  53. (Geezus, typos all over the place on that one. Let's try this again.)

    Myg, I don't have the words. Well, I have one...

    BRAVO!!!

    I enjoyed reading your story so much, stalking Twitarded for the next chapter every week. I am so sad the journey has ended but love the way you ended it. I adore your version of Edward and Bella and the relationship you gave them is so beautiful. Thank you for sharing your amazing talent with us.

    Just one more reason to love all that is Twitarded, for bringing Myg and her awesomeness info my life.

    Thank you, thank you, thank you!

    Hugs, kisess and inappropriate fondling to all!!

    Jaclyn

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  54. Myg,
    I don't know even know how to voice to you exactly how much I love this story. Your words are beautiful and powerful, and this story has stirred a depth of emotion in me I wouldn't image a story could.
    Thank you, thank you, and thank you again!

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  55. Thank you, Myg, for such a beautiful story. It was a perfect ending <3 xoxo

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  56. Myg,
    I can not thank you enough for posting this, here and on Fanfiction.net[just for me, because STY totally had my back!](@STY thanks for that BTW *big hug*) while we were all in Forks! It was epic to get to read it while with everyone there. I absolutely love, love, love OsaBella and you for writing it and sharing it with all of us. You are a beautiful person inside and out and I feel honored that I got to meet you. I can't wait to see what you write next. Thanks for being awesome and putting up with my fangirlish behavior. All that being said, I'm totally pissed I didn't win the bound copy at the raffle and I'm sure I'm not the only one. ;-) Thanks again, your awesome.

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  57. Myg,

    You are GENIUS!! I have fallen in love with this story and keep turning others onto it.

    Now how do we get Rob to sign on for the movie!?!?!

    This story is amazingly hot. Makes my private parts and my heart sing. Thank you!

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  58. Oh Myg, Not sure if today was a great day to finish this as I am bawling my eyes out and my hubs is giving me strange looks. This story was sooo very amazing..I just loved how you ended it. I wasn't quite sure what to expect death, broken hearts, but you put it together perfectly and I was truly captured by your story. I so hope you continue in writing. I don't have a favorite author Steph yeah she did the Twilight books, but this was so enjoyable to read you really kept me wanting week after week. Great job I def will buy a copy when you go to print..Lubs you tons...you rock That will be a signed book right??

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  59. oh derrr YOU are my favorite author...keep it up best wishes on your next excellent adventure, God I really gotta go to bed. Im delierious forks kicked my ass. Loved meeting you there muha

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  60. Myg, before I go into my review/fangirl party, I just want to let you know how much of a romantic/creepy/stressful/amazing honor it was to have your head on my shoulder while I read the update on Saturday. I love/hate that you truly got to see my honest-to-goodness reactions to your writing. Thanks for letting me scream, throw my crackberry (more than once), cry happy and sad tears, and laugh with you. I’ll never forget it. Ever.

    This is gonna be long. I hope that’s okay. The comments are in real-time…so if they’re disjointed, my B.

    “I nervously twisted the new engagement ring on my finger, like turning a small lie concealing a much bigger falsehood.” Welcome to the first sentence that stopped me in my tracks. Literally. I stopped walking and listening to people talking and re-read this about 3 times. And this: “…the deepest part of me, the part that saw truth and didn’t shade it with fear…” Yes. I love your awareness. This is beyond relatable. This is universal.

    "I just need to see you in it one last time," and then, the first tear fell.

    Illeana is one of my favorite characters. I shall miss her. Everyone needs an Illeana. The time spent before the wedding made me teary thinking about my Illeana. She’ll be my MoH, so this was especially touching for me. And I totally laughed through tears at “I like ‘Your Majesty’ better though.”

    I am a quivering, shallow-breathed twitch-fest over the imagery of the Cullen’s by the water. Alice waving made me catch my breath. And Bella’s walk with Charlie was so hard for me. It was so light and tense all at once. “I’ll never be far.” Unfgh. I can’t thank you enough for making me laugh at Edward’s comment about Bella wearing too much clothing. Oh, and Myg? I would absolutely love to hear what you were inspired by for Mercy’s song.

    Pregnant. Ugh… I seriously almost fell out of the booth when I read that in The Dungeon with you. IDK if you could tell with my wild flailing and incoherency…And twins. Had to get the Myglets in there!

    As for the change and Bella being Hala? I FUCKING CALLED IT! OH HOW I CALLED IT! I CALLED IT FOREVER AGO! I KNEW IT I KNEW IT I KNEW IT! …As the tears roll down my face. AGAIN. And Hamani’s ability to just…let it all go, was shocking. In a good way. The running scene was so beautiful. It really culminated everything. The freedom, the exhilaration of being together, acceptance…“I don’t know how I looked, but I felt like I was smiling.” The mental image of Bella on the bow of Reckoner made me think of your Twitter acct pic. And that made me smile.

    Thank you for sharing your heart and story with us.

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  61. Oh shit you guys. You are going to turn me into an asshole with all this love. Just stop it.

    No, don't. Seriously.

    No, I mean, shit. I can't believe how amazing you all are with your comments here. Hell. I feel so so so loved. Seriously. I don't know how I'm going to repay you. I hope to god you all know I love you back. I feel like those of you I met in Forks, I did not have nearly enough time (or sleep) to be able to really coherently take you all in.

    We need another Forks.

    And poor Lindsay Rae, I forced her to read the final chapters of OB at the Twitarded party with my head on her shoulder because I always wait on the edge of my seat for her reviews. I may have been drunk by then. Anyway, my apologies to Forks Pimp for making her miss your karaoke! But I couldn't help myself.

    xoxo
    Myg

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  62. i have loved ur story...i cant believe its done, I dont want it to be done. i found ur site about 2 weeks ago and have finished all chapters since! what will i ever read now. thans for sharing this with us all!

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  63. Myg,
    This is one of the best ff's ever! You are a talented writer. Couldn't wait to find out what would happen to Edward and Bella. What a surprise that she became Hala. Please give us outtakes and an epi. I am not alone in saying we want more. An update about B & E's wedding in Hawaii and their twins would be nice. Thank you for writing this incredible story.

    P.S. Hope you enjoyed Forks. By the way, I live in South Jersey.

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  64. i would like to second the need for Forks 2 because i was unable to attend the first one. In NY or NJ please. We'll dump all the kids at a Chuck E Cheese and leave them with the husband with the shortest straw (not mine, thank god). And then drink tequila in a parking lot discussing our favorite chapters. COUGHLake Crescentahem.

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  65. Oh Myg!

    I was crying crocodile tears while reading this on the plane coming home from SeaTac. I really felt like this was the end for Edward and Bella. But then, YOU TOTALLY REDEEMED YOURSELF!!!!! Your story took me from the lowest low to the highest high. [You've got MAD SKILZS!]

    The ending was a big surprise and made me very happy. And . . . it is just so RIPE for a sequel!

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  66. MYG - that was an incredible ending to a wonderful story! I had no idea how you were going to get this all worked out but you did it. With flair!

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  67. Chapter 35: My only question: Why does life have to suck so much at times? But then that is exactly why you wrote this and what it all means. Going through the horrors of life to get to the other side, whatever side that may be.

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  68. Chapter 36:

    Osa Bella = Beautiful Bear = wonderful tale told by one of my favorite people, Myg. A story of transformation in the most extreme sense but with extreme circumstances come extreme emotions and transformations. I am proud of you for writing this story and sharing your world with us. I am glad you were able to focus your grief into a story about survival and love conquering all. It was an incredible journey and I am so glad I was able to take it with you. Thank you for your writing and for being the wonderful person that you are.

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  69. oh myg.... i have been waiting and waiting and putting off and putting off writing a comment here... i told myself that i just wanted some time between when we sat together working on this at dawn in forks and now to put it in perspective, to maybe stop snot-sobbing every time i read certain parts... but the truth is that like a lot of things recently, i was worried about closure. about things ending. about finality. and i felt that this would end something. but at some point tonight as i sat her by myself in silence rereading these words that i have lovingly read several times before, i realized that this is not done. we are not over. this is more of a beginning than an end. i look forward to reading each and every word you write more than you possibly know. thank you for letting me be a part of this journey and for holding my hand when i needed it. if you hear a little sappy sound echoing in the night this evening, yeah that's probably me.

    xoxo

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  70. loved it! i've been following your story since day 1 and i 've loved every moment in it! you're an amazing writer! best fan fiction i've ever read :)

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  71. Dear Myg, I'm a Twitarded lover from the UK; I discovered this blog a few weeks ago and have now read Osa Bella twice; amazing FF far surpassing the original books. You created a Bella for people to actually identify with. Thanks so much for all your hard work, which I am amazed by. I must also say that an Edward POV would be brilliant - maybe your fans (I include myself in that) can start a fighting fund to encourage you?!?

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  72. Just so you know you are being read all the way in South Africa. I discovered Osa Bella via some random internet search and through Osa Bella I discovered Twitarded! I'm SO glad! I got my sister (who doesn't read, except apparently for Twilight) to read Osa Bella and she was also hooked.

    So while travelling through Swaziland last week, I kept checking Twitarded via my phone to see if the last chapters had been posted yet (and to see how the 'ladies' were doing in Forks). Stayed up to read the final chapters in a Beehive hut in Swaziland off my phone, a surreal experience which I won't soon forget. I then quickly texted my sister that it was ok she could go ahead and read the ending. She just didn't see how everything would turn out alright. She was 'awed'.. I think its the first time she's used the word!

    Thank you for a great story and the Haw (yes thats our surname) Sisters are eagerly awaiting more from Myg!

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  73. Just so you know you are being read all the way in South Africa. I discovered Osa Bella via some random internet search and through Osa Bella I discovered Twitarded! I'm SO glad! I got my sister (who doesn't read, except apparently for Twilight) to read Osa Bella and she was also hooked.

    So while travelling through Swaziland last week, I kept checking Twitarded via my phone to see if the last chapters had been posted yet (and to see how the 'ladies' were doing in Forks). Stayed up to read the final chapters in a Beehive hut in Swaziland off my phone, a surreal experience which I won't soon forget. I then quickly texted my sister that it was ok she could go ahead and read the ending. She just didn't see how everything would turn out alright. She was 'awed'.. I think its the first time she's used the word!

    Thank you for a great story and the Haw (yes thats our surname) Sisters are eagerly awaiting more from Myg!

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  74. Dear Myg, I'm a Twitarded lover from the UK; I discovered this blog a few weeks ago and have now read Osa Bella twice; amazing FF far surpassing the original books. You created a Bella for people to actually identify with. Thanks so much for all your hard work, which I am amazed by. I must also say that an Edward POV would be brilliant - maybe your fans (I include myself in that) can start a fighting fund to encourage you?!?

    ReplyDelete
  75. Myg,
    This is one of the best ff's ever! You are a talented writer. Couldn't wait to find out what would happen to Edward and Bella. What a surprise that she became Hala. Please give us outtakes and an epi. I am not alone in saying we want more. An update about B & E's wedding in Hawaii and their twins would be nice. Thank you for writing this incredible story.

    P.S. Hope you enjoyed Forks. By the way, I live in South Jersey.

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  76. i have loved ur story...i cant believe its done, I dont want it to be done. i found ur site about 2 weeks ago and have finished all chapters since! what will i ever read now. thans for sharing this with us all!

    ReplyDelete
  77. Myg, before I go into my review/fangirl party, I just want to let you know how much of a romantic/creepy/stressful/amazing honor it was to have your head on my shoulder while I read the update on Saturday. I love/hate that you truly got to see my honest-to-goodness reactions to your writing. Thanks for letting me scream, throw my crackberry (more than once), cry happy and sad tears, and laugh with you. I’ll never forget it. Ever.

    This is gonna be long. I hope that’s okay. The comments are in real-time…so if they’re disjointed, my B.

    “I nervously twisted the new engagement ring on my finger, like turning a small lie concealing a much bigger falsehood.” Welcome to the first sentence that stopped me in my tracks. Literally. I stopped walking and listening to people talking and re-read this about 3 times. And this: “…the deepest part of me, the part that saw truth and didn’t shade it with fear…” Yes. I love your awareness. This is beyond relatable. This is universal.

    "I just need to see you in it one last time," and then, the first tear fell.

    Illeana is one of my favorite characters. I shall miss her. Everyone needs an Illeana. The time spent before the wedding made me teary thinking about my Illeana. She’ll be my MoH, so this was especially touching for me. And I totally laughed through tears at “I like ‘Your Majesty’ better though.”

    I am a quivering, shallow-breathed twitch-fest over the imagery of the Cullen’s by the water. Alice waving made me catch my breath. And Bella’s walk with Charlie was so hard for me. It was so light and tense all at once. “I’ll never be far.” Unfgh. I can’t thank you enough for making me laugh at Edward’s comment about Bella wearing too much clothing. Oh, and Myg? I would absolutely love to hear what you were inspired by for Mercy’s song.

    Pregnant. Ugh… I seriously almost fell out of the booth when I read that in The Dungeon with you. IDK if you could tell with my wild flailing and incoherency…And twins. Had to get the Myglets in there!

    As for the change and Bella being Hala? I FUCKING CALLED IT! OH HOW I CALLED IT! I CALLED IT FOREVER AGO! I KNEW IT I KNEW IT I KNEW IT! …As the tears roll down my face. AGAIN. And Hamani’s ability to just…let it all go, was shocking. In a good way. The running scene was so beautiful. It really culminated everything. The freedom, the exhilaration of being together, acceptance…“I don’t know how I looked, but I felt like I was smiling.” The mental image of Bella on the bow of Reckoner made me think of your Twitter acct pic. And that made me smile.

    Thank you for sharing your heart and story with us.

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  78. Myg,

    You are GENIUS!! I have fallen in love with this story and keep turning others onto it.

    Now how do we get Rob to sign on for the movie!?!?!

    This story is amazingly hot. Makes my private parts and my heart sing. Thank you!

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  79. Oh Myg, Not sure if today was a great day to finish this as I am bawling my eyes out and my hubs is giving me strange looks. This story was sooo very amazing..I just loved how you ended it. I wasn't quite sure what to expect death, broken hearts, but you put it together perfectly and I was truly captured by your story. I so hope you continue in writing. I don't have a favorite author Steph yeah she did the Twilight books, but this was so enjoyable to read you really kept me wanting week after week. Great job I def will buy a copy when you go to print..Lubs you tons...you rock That will be a signed book right??

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  80. I wanted to reply immediately but I can’t RUSH reading this ending! So I thought I’d comment as I read along… oh yeah. But then all thoughts pretty much flew out of my head as I read, insatiable.

    God, the authors note just about did me in, girl, and we hadn’t even gotten to the opening of the chapter! It’s been pretty damn cool to follow this story with you – my first time reading the entire fic as the author posts – and pretty amazing to see how Twilight helped you manage your overwhelming love and grief for your sister, as it helped me with my love for and loss of my mom. You’ve shown how strong we all are, Myg. Amanda would be proud.

    So Bella discovered letting go is key. A "tale of creation and hope" indeed.... *this* is Osa Bella, and everything and everyone and every moment that went into it. I'm just speechless. What an exhilarating ending. My heart is pounding.. I need to regroup and reread and... let it all in.

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  81. Myg... Thank you so much for this beautiful story!

    This was just...I don't have enough words to describe it!

    You, Mr. Myg and the rest of the twitarded-gang made me cry so many times, made me laugh and made me happy... Thank you so much!

    I wish u all the best! And I hope this wasn't the last thing we hear/read from you!

    Hugs and lots of love from Germany!

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  82. Well I am bawling waiting here at the hair salon and so far I only read your intro. I only clicked by to check if you guys were staying out of trouble and jail. Gotta go read now, laters baby!

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  83. i don't have words enough. thank you.

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