At First Sight

Twilight - rewritten from Jacob's perspective

← Chapter 3: Beach      Chapter 5: Hard Time →

Chapter 4: Interrogation

Billy was cooking when I got home, stirring something warm and fragrant in a simmering pot.

"Chili for dinner?" He wheeled himself over to grab the mail that I had brought in.

"One of my favs." I washed my hands quickly and set the table. Two bowls. Two forks. It was easy now with my sisters gone. No frills. No fuss.

"You know, you could learn to make it yourself seeing how much you like it," he suggested, chuckling at his little joke.

"Yeah, well, you know what happened the last time you tried to teach me to cook," I snorted as I ladled food into our bowls. It was just lucky that I hadn't done any permanent damage to the house.

We both laughed as we dug in. Rachel had tried to teach us to cook before she left, but not surprisingly, Billy was a quicker study than I was, ruining only a handful of pans before getting the gist of how to put decent food on the table without scorching it, or us, in the process. I, on the other hand, had a bad tendency to get distracted while cooking and had burned my way through so many pans that both Rachel and Billy had given up, much to our mutual relief.

"So how was the beach? Do any fishing?" 

"Please, you know I don't fish." I grimaced as I wolfed down my dinner. I could just imagine Quil's reaction if I had suggested that we go fishing, which was the cool thing to do among the older La Push crowd. Which was precisely why it was so not cool among my crowd.

"You've never tried!" he protested.

"I don't need to. Trust me."

We were quiet for a while as we both ate, with only the sound of our chewing breaking the silence. That was another thing that was nice about my sisters being gone. Peace and quiet with no feminine compulsion to fill up the silence. And yet, that was also one of the worst things about them being gone. The house felt eerily restless and entirely devoid of any female presence.

"So did you see Bella at the beach?" Billy asked suddenly.

I almost choked mid-bite. He raised an eyebrow as he whacked me on the back. Regaining control of myself, I returned his gaze warily, my face heating up.

"How did you know she would be at the beach?" I asked as casually as I could with a flaming red face.

"Charlie called and mentioned that she was heading our way. I figured that you guys were bound to run into each other. So, did you see her?"

Billy concentrated intently on his spoonful of chili as he asked, but I wasn't fooled. I could sense his curiosity, which only made me turn a brighter shade of red.

"Yeah, I saw her,” I muttered, unsure of what to say next. "Ah ... she didn't actually remember me." I shrugged, as casually as I could, remembering the confused and slightly wary look on her face when I approached her.

“Well that's no surprise. You were barely out of diapers the last time she saw you."

"I was nine years old!" I rolled my eyes and stood up abruptly to grab a drink of water.

"Exactly my point," chuckled Billy, smiling broadly at his own lame joke. 

Not wanting to dignify that with a response, I stacked our empty dishes - all two of them - and moved towards the sink. 

"Still, it's been a while. Plus you guys never played much together anyways. Bet she would have remembered the girls."

"Yeah, she did."

"Did she say anything about how she's liking Forks?"

"Not really.”

"I'll be she's loving all the rain."

"Yeah, something like that," I mumbled as I turned the sink on high and noisily began soaping up the dishes. Taking the hint, Billy pushed away from the table and started moving toward the living room.

Damnit. I knew I was being unreasonable. I had wanted him to stop asking me about Bella, and yet now I was annoyed that he had. I couldn't help wondering what Charlie had said about her. Did she like Forks? Did she miss Phoenix? Was she making friends? What about guys? Was there a boyfriend back in Phoenix, maybe?

I wondered what her type was. Definitely not a jock. That would be almost comical given her own complete lack of coordination. That boded well for me, I was decently athletic but no jock. Charlie had mentioned in the past that she was pretty smart, taking almost all honors and AP classes, but she didn't seem too geeky to me. Also a good thing, I was a decent student but not great. That seemed to be a common theme here. I was really just your average guy, decent at most things but exceptional at none. I wondered if she ...

"You know, I think that plate is clean enough. You've rinsed it off about five times already.” I almost cracked the plate against the side of the sink in shock as Billy's deep voice interrupted my thoughts. “Something on your mind?"

"No, I'm fine." I turned the faucet off quickly and busied myself rearranging the rest of the dishes on the rack to make room. It was the nightly ritual at our house now. Billy cooked and I cleaned. And neither of us were terribly good at our tasks but we made do.

I wiped down the table, made a half-hearted attempt to tidy up the counter-tops, and was about to turn off the lights and move towards the garage, when I gave into my curiosity.

"So, what did Charlie say?" I asked, as nonchalantly as I could, as I idled by the front door.

"Hmm?" Billy asked, without looking up from his book.

"About Bella. What did Charlie say about Bella?" I persisted, trying hard not to blush yet again at the sound of her name.

Looking up from his book, Billy gazed at me thoughtfully for a few moments before responding. "Not much. She's made some friends. You probably met them today. They seem nice?"

"Yeah, they're cool." Well not really. At least not that Mike kid who so clearly saw himself as Bella's boyfriend-to-be. And the snooty blonde looked like a royal pain too. But the others didn't seem too bad.

"Good. Charlie was worried at first. Didn't know how she'd adapt to life here. It's not Phoenix, that's for sure."

There was no place like home for Billy. And for me too. But then again, I had never been out of the state, so what did I know?

"I told Charlie not to worry. She takes after him in many ways. Quiet. Self-sufficient. But he still worries." Billy shrugged as he turned back to his book.

"What's Renee like?" I asked, curious about the side of Bella that I knew almost nothing about. Charlie, I knew almost as well as my own father. He had been a presence in my life for as long as I could remember.

Billy furrowed his brow as he thought about how to describe Renee. That was one of the things that I respected the most about him. He was fair. Well except when it came to the Cullens and to Sam. But for the most part, Billy was un-judgmental and pretty even-keeled. You could always count on him to be rationale and think through both sides. It made it hard sometimes as his son though. It definitely dampened any sense of rebellion when you knew he wouldn’t yell or fight you about it. If anything, he’d probably understand and help me justify my behavior. But I knew that I was lucky. Far luckier than some of the other guys like Embry, whose mom nagged and grounded him for every little thing.

“Renee was great. Is great,” Billy corrected himself. “She and Charlie were really happy. They were high school sweethearts. I remember they used to come down to the beach. Renee was so friendly that all the guys would flirt with her, which drove Charlie nuts. But he knew Renee was just teasing. He lightened up when he was with her.”

I smiled to myself, trying to reconcile the Charlie that I knew with a younger romantic jealous type.

“So what happened?” I asked.

“Well, they got married right after high school. Had Bella. And then reality hit I guess.” Billy said ruefully. “I remember how that is. You’re young and in love and everything is great. Until you have kids and then suddenly you realize that you have responsibilities and your life is not yours anymore and it can be very scary. Especially if you were always hoping to have another life.”

I looked at him pointedly. What was he trying to tell me?

“I’m not saying that kids aren’t worth it,” he gave me a grin as he nodded his head at me. “But Renee had never planned on staying in Forks. She was a warm-weather girl at heart. But Charlie had just joined the police force and his mother was here and in bad health, so there was no question of him leaving. And so they fought and eventually, she left – taking Bella with her - and that was that.”

“It seems like she might have thought of that before she decided to fall in love with him,” I commented skeptically.

Billy looked at me with an amused smile. “It’s not so easy to think rationally when you’re in love. Things just fall by the wayside.”

“Right. Does Bella take after her mom at all?”

“Well now, you’ve seen her more recently than I have. You tell me.”

I shrugged. “Not really. She seems all Charlie to me.”

“Yeah. Charlie’s a good guy. He never really got over it. Your mother used to keep in touch with Renee too and your mom used to say that it was Forks that broke up their marriage. It wasn’t them. “

I mulled over what he said. Bella didn’t seem much like Renee at all in that sense. Sure, she had quipped about disliking small time life in Forks, but her demeanor didn’t suggest that she hated it here. Deciding that I had pushed my luck enough for an evening, I headed out the door before Billy could ask any follow-up questions that I wasn’t prepared to answer.

← Chapter 3: Beach      Chapter 5: Hard Time →

About Me

I'm a Twilight fan who believes that Jacob Black is better for Bella than Edward, so I wrote these Team Jacob fanfiction stories to try to convert as many people to my side as possible. :)

I've tried to stay as faithful to the original books as possible up through At the Cliffs, which is when I break off from canon and write out Eclipse the way I wish it had happened!

So ... what do you think? Good? Bad? Ideas for other stories?

Please let me know!

Jane

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