What’s The Next Step? – chapter 4

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Chapter 4: Stuck

Daphne
I was about to sit down on the chair when I saw Tyng leaving the cafe. Trisha stopped Caleb in his tracks. “I’ll talk to her and see what’s wrong,” Trisha said. Caleb turned and said something to Edmund. Both of them came over and sat down.

face“Write down your orders on this piece of paper,” Melissa said. She whipped out her notebook and a shiny silver pen. We took turns to look at the menu and wrote down our orders. Caleb passed when it was his turn and kept looking outside. He drummed his fingers on the table. The vampires were telling their stories to my friends and I but I was thinking of something else at the same time.

“Sorry to cut your happiness short but the way back to your world,” Carlisle suddenly spoke up. “It’s gone.”

“What do you mean it’s gone?” I asked quickly. “You mean that there’s a way home for them?” Caleb asked suddenly. “Yes, but it’s gone. There isn’t any portal for years already,” Damien answered while putting down a tray of drinks on the table. We passed out the drinks quietly.

“There’s nothing we can do?” Esme asked when she saw our sad faces. She sprinkled a clear liquid into her drink before passing the small vial to Rosalie. Carlisle shook his head. I was still thinking about the portal when my food came.

“How did the other maidens go back to their world?” I asked. “Well, no maidens came to Inkspell for years actually,” Legolas said before taking another bite of his hamburger. I always thought he was a vegetarian. Before Legolas could continue with his story, Caleb got up and went towards the counter.

I didn’t listen to Legolas because I somehow had to see what Caleb planned to do. Edmund craned his neck and stood up abruptly. Edmund then followed Caleb outside. Turns out that both Trisha and Tyng were walking back towards the cafe. Trisha and Edmund came into the cafe while Tyng and Caleb were left outside.

“What did you order?” Trisha asked while looking at the menu. “I ordered their clam chowder and fries. Pretty tasty. I need help to finish the fries anyway,” I replied while offering my fries to Amalina, Teva and Ling. “I’ll have the clam chowder,” Edmund said. He peered over Trisha’s shoulder while she wrote on the paper.

The bell rang. Tyng and Caleb came in looking like a couple. Tyng ordered fish and chips, so did Caleb. All of us went outside to play with the snow while both Tyng and Caleb ate. Trisha and Edmund finished their food quickly and joined us outside.

Emmett got us all to ambush Rosalie with snowballs. Rosalie was angry at first and hit us back with more snowballs. Emmett didn’t tell us that Rosalie has a strong arm. Tyng and Caleb joined us when Alice recruited both of them into her snowball team. We were split into two groups and battled with snowballs. It’s almost like playing dodgeball. Some of the diners joined us too.

Arwen flung another snowball at Melissa. “I’ve been planning to take our new friends to see the twilight,” Edmund spoke up as he helped Melissa brush off the snow. “That’s a good idea,” Damien said and checked his watch. “Let’s head back,” he added. “Caleb will sing a song for us,” Melissa piped up and wrapped an arm around her son. Caleb cleared his throat in embarrassment. “He did promise us you know, when he comes back from his trip. Besides, we didn’t hear him croon for some time,” Pogue said slowly and thoughtfully.

“I’ll take over the drums,” Emmett quickly said. “I’ll play the piano,” Edward said brightly. “No, the piano is mine,” snarled Rosalie.

Rosalie and Edward ran into the house when we reached home. Edward quickly positioned himself at the grand piano, leaving a fuming Rosalie standing in the living room. Emmett was banging away on the drums happily.

We helped to turn the sofas around to face the mini stage Tim and Pogue set up. “What did I get myself into?” Caleb said while tuning his guitar. Jasper brought him a stool. Pogue dimmed the lights in the living room and left a few spotlights on Caleb.

Caleb gave a nervous laugh when his younger brother, Tim, cheered for him. “What do you want me to sing?” Caleb asked. “It’s a family tradition. Sing anything you like,” Melissa said. “After Tonight!” his brothers yelled. “That’s a good song! Sing that song, Caleb,” Edward said. “I’ll play anything,” Emmett said.

“Alright. No laughing,” Caleb said and began to strum his guitar. He was good. We were all mesmerized. It might be Jasper’s crowd control. We sang along with him and clapped when he finished his song. Caleb grinned when Esme gave him a hug. “I want to perform,” Alice said. “If it’s ok.”

Caleb stayed on as the guitarist. “I need a duo,” Alice said and Jasper appeared immediately beside her. “We’ll be singing a duet to the song At The Beginning,” Alice announced and was greeted with cheers. The chemistry between the two of them was very strong. According to Rosalie, Alice and Jasper can relate to the song due to their past and how they came to meet.

All of us sang together again. After Alice was Carlisle’s turn because his family urged him to sing. He chose to sing a song entitled Invisible Life. The mini concert ended when no one wanted to sing anymore. Rosalie, Pogue, and Edward head to the garage to tune and repair cars.

Carlisle announced that he’ll be going to the local library with Legolas. “Can I hitch a ride with you?” Ling asked. “Sure,” Carlisle said. “I’m coming too,” Teva said. The four of them left immediately.

Tim, Caleb, Jasper and Emmett were given shovels. “Shovel the driveway,” Mr. Baile said and winked at the four guys while they head out. Emmett and Jasper looked hyper. “What will you be doing?” Arwen asked when Mr. Baile pulled out a cook book form the shelf. “I’m going to prepare lunch later,” Mr. Baile said. “That’s very sweet of you,” Melissa said. The women disappeared into the kitchen with Mr. Baile.

“Well,” Teva said and looked at us. The rest of us could not think of anything. Carlisle retired to Damien’s study. Alice busied herself by arranging flowers. We spent our time watching television and read books and magazines in Damien’s study. Damien’s study is big with walls and walls of reading materials. It’s very cozy too. I wouldn’t mind spending a night in there.

“Who is Caleb talking to?” Alice suddenly said. We were all sprawled in the living room. I was lying on the carpet on my stomach. Alice was looking through the glass. “The neighbour’s daughter?” Trisha said and shrugged. Tyng got up and peeked over Alice’s shoulder.

“Probably,” I heard her say before she continued reading the book she was holding. “So Carlisle, can you tell us more about the Volturi?” I asked. Edward and Bella told us previously that they met the Volturi before but never explained much about them. The Volturi is kind of like a self-proclaimed royal family of vampires living in Volterra, Italy. Carlisle explained that the Volturi hire talented and gifted vampires to put order to existing vampire communities. We were all awed when he told us Edward’s story. He told us how Bella saved Edward at the Palazzo dei Priori, the clock tower.

From what I gathered, the Volturi is headed by three vampires namely Aro, Caius and Marcus. Their guards are Jane, Demetri, Heidi and some names that I couldn’t catch. They wanted the Cullens to join them but the Cullens rejected the offers. They kept pressuring the Cullens.

“They came here a few months ago,” Melissa said. “What did they want?” Esme asked. Both of them came out with plates of piping hot food which smelled so mouthwatering. “They wanted us to join them,” Damien said. “We rejected of course. We had to sent Caleb to you because Aro wanted him, Esme. He wants Caleb for his ability to paint the future,” Melissa said. She frowned.

“What about Pogue and Tim?” Mr. Baile asked. He emerged with a few more plates of food. We dug in almost immediately. Mr. Baile cooked delicious waffles. “The Volturi only wanted Caleb. Pogue and Tim stayed back to make sure the Volturi do not go overboard,” Melissa added. “Will they come back?” Esme asked urgently. “No. They will not make an appearance because we have humans with us. They don’t want to be known,” Damien said.

“Hey, hey! I smell something delicious!” Rosalie’s voice rang from the living room. She seated herself beside Trisha. The mechanics followed right behind her. “No. Goodbye!” Caleb shouted and slammed the door shut.

“That girl is pushy,” Melissa said and rolled her eyes. “Waffles?” Alice asked and held up a plate. “Yes, please,” Caleb replied and sat on the chair beside Tyng. Caleb looked irritated. “Are you alright?” Tyng asked him when he kept silent for some time.

“What should we do if they reappear at your doorstep?” Tim asked. “Get Bella and the humans out,” Edward said without a second thought. “I don’t see the use to get them out. How do we outrun them? They have Demetri, the tracker,” Emmett spoke up.

“Leave the escape part to me,” Arwen said. “I got a few tricks up my sleeves.”

“What did I miss?” Carlisle asked. The group returned form the library. “The Volturi came here a few months ago,” Damien said. “Wait, who’s the Volturi?” Legolas asked.

Carlisle explained the Volturi to Legolas. “The last time we met them, it was pretty ugly,” Esme commented. “I don’t understand,” Mr. Baile said as he sat down. “What happened the last time?”

“They waged a war on us. They wanted Bella to be turned in immediately,” Edward growled. “Enough about the Volturi. It’s almost time for you guys to get ready to catch twilight,” Carlisle quipped. “It’s still afternoon!” Teva said. I looked out of the window. It was getting dark.

“I forgot that we’re in Alaska,” Teva said when she realized the time difference. Melissa, Esme and Arwen packed light picnic food for us. “Something to nibble while enjoying the scenery,” Arwen said as she ushered us out of the door.

“Whoa,” Teva breathed when we entered the garage. Pogue was sitting in the driver’s seat of a long, black Hummer. “I figured we could all travel together. Save gas,” he said. “Not really. Hummer’s not environmentally friendly,” Alice said as she climbed into the car.

The car was very spacey and there was plenty of room for everyone. Pogue drove us uphill and we stopped at the peak. We were just in time to see the twilight. It was so beautiful and haunting as well. All of us excited or stood on top of the car to watch the sunset.

“Let’s take a group picture,” Pogue called out and held up a digital camera. All of us posed beside the car. We ate a bit of our packed food. Melissa, Esme and Arwen packed sandwiches for everyone. We sat in the car and chatted. We left the doors open.

As I nibbled on the sandwiches, I looked at the sky. I wonder whether there is a hidden city behind the twilight, like in Northern Lights. I found out why the twilight we saw was eerie. It was giving out a green glow.

“Does the twilight glow green?” I asked Pogue who was sitting beside me. “The twilight here does. It’s not an aurora if you’re wondering,” Pogue said as he looked up at the sky. “It’s quite eerie. It’s greenish blue now,” Tyng said. She was outside, leaning against the Hummer. Emmett and Edward sat on the roof of the car. “Can we reach the twilight?” Emmett asked.

“We haven’t tried. Do you want to try?” Caleb asked. He was a few feet away from the car looking up to the sky with his hand shielding his eyes. It was almost as if he could see the galaxy. “Vampire eyes. Our eyes can work like telescopes. Much better than telescopes in fact,” Alice explained and smiled.

“Not today. What about tomorrow?” Jasper said. “Let’s have a vote,” Bella suggested when all of us began to voice our own opinions at the same time. After a lot of noise, all of us agreed that we go tomorrow if it’s ok with the adults. We chatted for a few more minutes before deciding to return home. I slept the whole way.

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