At the Cliffs

My take on New Moon / Eclipse - written from Bella's perspective

← Chapter 20: Ride      Chapter 22: Surprise →

Chapter 21: Night

“Jake, wait!” I called as I stumbled after him, snagging his arm before he could pull away.

Jake stopped but he didn’t turn around.

“I don’t know what to say, Jake,“ I admitted, “Because I don’t know what would have happened. Maybe you’re right. Maybe I would have been with him forever if he hadn’t left –“ I paused to catch my breath-“But maybe I wouldn’t have. I’m not the same person now that I was then. I know you better now than I did then. I can’t tell you what might have happened, because I really don’t know. Please … don’t get upset.”

“I’m not upset,” Jake said with a sigh as he turned around. “I’m really not. Just a little sad. It’s okay, really,”- he said as it was his turn to put his hand over my mouth to prevent me from speaking-“I’m really not upset about it. I can’t help that you met him first. I can’t help that maybe you would never have been with me if he hadn’t left. It’s just a little unsettling to have to settle for second best. The consolation prize. But I’ll get over it.”

I frowned and Jake pulled his hand away to let me speak.

“I called him,” I blurted out, wanting to come clean. Jake’s face didn’t move as he waited for me to continue. “I called him. Well I don’t have their contact info anymore so I called Carlisle – he was the only one I could find on Google being a doctor and all …”

“Okay, so what happened?” Jake asked, his face still impassive.

“Wait, you’re not upset?” I asked in confusion.

He shrugged. “I figured you were going to do it after last night. I’m more interested in finding out when they’re showing up at this point.”

My face fell. “They’re not. I couldn’t get a hold of him. I called him at the hospital that he was working at in upstate New York. They said he had taken a leave of absence and they had no contact information to reach him during that time. I tried looking for a way to contact the others, but nothing.”

Jake closed his eyes abruptly then as he pulled away. He whirled around and slammed his hand against a slender tree sapling, the force of his blow snapping it in two.

“I thought you would have been happy that they weren’t coming,” I stuttered as I took a step back, shocked by the violence of his reaction.

“I was an idiot last night. A jealous idiot,” he scoffed as he turned to face me again. “But I’m not stupid. I knew you were right. We need the help. We need it desperately. I knew you would call them anyway so I could be stupid about it.” He shrugged ruefully, “I guess I shouldn’t have gotten my hopes up. I was willing to take any … drama … that might have happened if he returned, if it would mean that I could guarantee that you lived.”

Jake sighed then as he put his hands around his face suddenly, as if to wipe to all the weariness and strain from his face.

“You’re really scared, aren’t you?” I asked, suddenly seeing through his mask fully for the first time.

He looked up surprised. “Scared? Yeah, I guess I am. We all are. There’s at least 20 of them. Maybe more. We can put up a good fight. But we’re not stupid. The numbers aren’t good.”

It was my turn to sigh as I reached up to grab one of his warm capable hands. “I could never tell. You guys were so good at keeping to the whole macho we-can-do-anything party-line.”

Jake snorted. “That’s Quil. And Paul. I’ve never thought that I could do anything. Forget about anything. I can’t even do the only thing that I care about, which is to protect you from them.”

“It’s not your fault, Jake,” I replied as I patted his hand. “You’ve done everything. We’ll just have to see what happens.”

He gave a bitter laugh. “Well, we’re not quite done yet. Maybe we’ll pull off an underdog miracle.” Jake stretched then, before pulling me towards the huge stones that dotted the north side of the field. “Come on. We’ve got work to do.”

“What’s the plan?” I asked as I looked around me, marveling at the size of the huge boulders that formed a craggy perimeter around the north edge of the field. I could see why Leah had suggested an ambush. The rocks were the perfect hiding place for the pack.

“When they come out of the river, we want to draw them up towards this side of the field. Ideally, we’d want them to separate into small groups – so if we can place your scent interspersed across all the rocks – it will cause them to scatter, making it easier for us to tackle them. The goal is to be able to take out half of them upon the first ambush, which isn’t unreasonable given that we’ll have the element of surprise.”

“So then it’ll just be 10 of them left for the 10 of you,” I said, finishing his thought. “That’s almost doable.”

He snorted. “Who knows how many there really are. But yeah, that’s the idea.”

“Alright,” I said as I straightened up. “I’m ready to begin.”

I fumbled in my coat pocket to fish out the swiss army knife that I had swiped from Charlie’s desk earlier today. Jake’s eyes were wide as he watched me flick open the knife attachment.

“What are you doing?”

“Spreading my scent,” I replied and I cut off a small chunk of my hair with a swift flick of the knife. I figured that I could embed the strands within the boulders which would help the scent last for a few days.

“Oh okay, I thought you were going to …” Jake’s voice trailed off when he jumped up to grab my arm. I had brought the knife to my finger and was about to make a small cut.

“What?” I asked as I looked up at him in confusion. “We need my blood.”

Jake’s face contorted. “I don’t want you to hurt yourself for this.”

I raised an eyebrow. “You’re kidding right? You guys are about to fight to the death and you don’t want me to give up a few drops of blood.”

I pulled my arm from his and finished making the small cut to the fleshy part of my pinky finger. I flinched a little from the pain and my head spun a little at the salty rusty smell of the blood, but I refused to let Jake see it or any other sign of pain or discomfort. The cut was deep enough to draw blood, but not enough that it was gushing out.

I started walking around the boulders, leaving my hair wedged between the rocks, and smearing my blood everywhere that I could find, favoring little crevices that would be protected from the wind and the rain. I didn’t want my scent to be diminished in any way. As Leah said, surprise was the only advantage they had.

It took longer than I thought it would, since I was trying to do as thorough a job as I could. Jake followed me, keeping a few feet away the entire time, never speaking but watching me like a hawk the entire time. I finally finished and we stepped back together to look around.

“Can you smell it?” I asked curiously.

Jake nodded. “It’s hard not to. You’ve bloodied up half the field.”

“Good,” I said with a pleased smile. “Is there anywhere else?”

“No, I think this is good for now. Let’s take a break. I’m worried you’ll get light-headed from all the blood loss.”

I rolled my eyes but decided not to argue. We had all night after all. I followed him to a grassy patch that was illuminated by the moonlight and plopped down on the ground. Jake laid down on his back with a deep sigh and I followed, snuggling my head into the crook of his neck, as he wrapped one arm around me. His other hand was playing with the shortened strand of hair that I had cut earlier.

It was a beautiful summer night. The air was warm, but with a slight breeze – the perfect temperature for sleeping outdoors. Way out here in the fields, there were no lights to compete with the night sky, and the stars were spread out endlessly above us.

“Look!” Jake reached up to point at the sky. “A shooting star. Make a wish.”

I did. I wished that the pack would survive and be okay. It was worth a shot.

“Let me guess,” Jake’s voice interrupted my thoughts. “You wished that I would be okay.”

I smiled into the crook of his neck and teased, “How did you know?”

“Because I know you,” he chuckled, the sound rumbling deep inside his chest as he pulled me closer. “That’s all right. I wished that you would be okay, so we both should be covered.”

“Jake …” my voice trailed off since I still wasn’t certain exactly what I wanted to say.


I was silent for a bit, debating whether or not to bring up the conversation from earlier. I finally decided to press on. Who knew when I’d have a chance to say it.

“You know I don’t think you’re second best, right?”

“I believe that you think that way now because he’s not here. I’m your only option,” he replied gravely.

“Yes, but even if he were-“ I stopped when Jake’s hand tightened around me.

“Don’t say things you don’t mean, Bella,” he said in a low voice. “You owe me that. If nothing else. We owe each other the truth.”

“I wasn’t going to lie. You assume that if he were here, that I would choose him. All I’m saying is that I don’t know if that’s true.”

I felt Jake shrug beneath me. “Let’s not talk about this. What’s the point? It’ll just get us all riled up.” Then he shifted suddenly and smoothly, pulling me on top of him, my face now looking down into his. His eyes were laughing now as he teased, “Plus, I can think of a million other things I’d rather be doing right now then talking about him.”

I shivered as I felt his hands running up and down my back. One hand found the edge of my shirt and pushed it up slightly so that it was touching my bare skin.

“Yeah?” I teased, even though my voice was shaky, “A million things, huh?”

“Maybe just one,” he grinned before pulling me down for a kiss.

I felt as if I could do this forever, laying in his arms on the perfect balmy sunny night, letting his warmth flow through me, liquefying my bones and turning all my insides into mush. Jake had both his hands now underneath my shirt, stroking the bare skin on my back, stimulating a million and one sensitive nerve endings that I never knew I had.

My arms were propped awkwardly on his shoulders as I tried to hold myself up so that I would crush him entirely, but with a swift move, Jake had swapped our positions so that I was flat on my back and he was looming over me, all without breaking the kiss.

I felt free to return the treatment now, easily pulling off the ratty tanktop that he had pulled on after phasing, so that I could feel the silkiness – and the roughness in some places – of the skin on his chest and back. My fingers caressed every ridge and plane of his well-muscled back. I could tell Jake liked it because he shuddered at my touch and seemed to sink more deeply into the kiss – if that was even possible.

I don’t know how long we were like this – minutes, maybe even hours - when five short high-pitched howls sounded in quick succession high above us followed one long plaintive howl. Jake ripped himself away from me and was on his feet before I could even react.

“What’s going on?” I stuttered as I sat myself up at his feet, patting down my disheveled hair and clothes.

Jake didn’t bother to respond. Instead he hauled me to my feet and swung me into his arms as he took off for the forest, running at full speed. I looked up to see the grey wolf – who had been pacing at the edge of the cliff that overlooked the quarry field and the river downstream – let out another set of five short howls followed by a long one, before the wolf turned and dashed into the forest.

And then, I knew. They were here.

← Chapter 20: Ride      Chapter 22: Surprise →

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!


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