Mattie

©Molly Looby No way. I knew I was dying. I knew I was dying fast, but this hit me like a speeding bullet. How long did I have left, years, months, weeks? Days...?
Hours...?


For Ali-Rose life is just a fading moment. Fighting from her inevitable death is the only thing she can do to save her family from the grief that is sure to engulf them. But something on the horizon is about to change her life...
Forever...


(This is a Twilight fanfic set twelve years after the end of 'Breaking Dawn', but not from Bella's POV, from the POV of Ali-Rose - all will be revealed if you care to read on.)


(Author's Note: Before you read Mattie, please can I just point out that it was written when I was fourteen-fifteen years old, and it was also the first thing I ever wrote and finished, for my own benefit and that of a close friend. I know it has its flaws and I'm okay with that because this story made me grow as an author more than I could've imagined. I truly hope you enjoy it.)

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19. LONG-FORGOTTEN

IT TOOK LONGER THAN NORMAL TO FINISH LUNCH. Talking and eating at the same time is a skill that most humans had developed, but being the hybrid that I was I hadn’t learnt how to do it. We were sitting at the table for a little less than an hour. Tyler and I were sitting next to each other on the big sofa, chatting, when I finally plucked up enough courage to ask about his past.

“Tyler?”

“Yes Mattie?” He gave me a smile that I knew inside out already. It was a soft smile, it lifted his cheeks only slightly, and the corners of his mouth were the only things that really moved. His eyes would light up when he smiled. They were so deep that you could get lost in them.

“You said you were turned in 1926.”

“Yes, I was. Why?”

“I was just wondering who did it and why.”

“Well, there are some things you need to understand about my human life for the story to be told properly.”

“I have time.” I stared into his eyes and something made him tell me. He took a lungful of air, my presence not bothering him at all, and began.

“I was born in London in 1910 as Taylor Matthew Watson. From a very young age I loved the supernatural, the unexplained - anything that had a hint of mystery or wonder. My best friend William and I used to make up stories about wizards, dragons, witches, werewolves, and vampires. We used to tell them to my younger brother as he was growing up.

“But at the age of thirteen, Will and I decided that it was foolish and immature, and that we should grow up. So we didn’t speak of any of it for three years. Neither of us anticipated that the supernatural would change our lives forever.

“We were just sixteen, only children really, when we went in search of the vampire. ‘Animal attacks’ had been happening in our village every month or so. The victims had no link and were drained completely of their blood. Will and I had no doubt that it was a vampire. Deep down we still believed.

“We planned to meet up and look for it, it didn’t take long. Our mothers trusted us enough to let us out often, so it was easy. My mother thought I was at Will’s, and Will’s mother thought that we were at my house.

“We went to the edge of the village where there was a forest. We had played in the forest many times when we were young so we knew it well. Will had ‘borrowed’ one of his father’s lanterns so we could see. We stopped at the edge of the forest, both secretly terrified. Will reminded me of a party that we were supposed to be at, Mary’s, a local girl who lived in our village. But I, foolishly, wanted to hunt the vampire. I managed to convince Will to let me go alone and I set off into the dark forest. That was the last time I saw Will in my human life.

“I walked deeper and deeper in the forest, and of course, I found the vampire. He was twenty-five, but had lived for a couple of centuries. I saw the speed with which he moved, and in that second I knew I was dead.

“He walked over to me and asked me how much I knew. He had known that some of the villagers believed in vampires, but it was only really Will and I. I decided that it was best not to lie, so I told him that I knew about vampires. I also told him that I was the only one who believed. My last minutes were all about saving Will. He didn’t trust me, or believe me, but I was a threat to him.

“He pinned me to the floor and told me he was sorry, and incredibly, he gave me a last wish. I told him to stay away from my village and that he couldn’t hurt any of them ever again. I knew that my last wish would most likely go unanswered, but I had tried. I was waiting to die.  I was amazed when death didn’t come. The sharp blades touched my neck. The vampire backed away. I couldn’t understand. There was no mark. Then the fire started.

“The vampire stayed with me as I burned. He told me everything he knew about vampires. He would tell me stories over and over again. Sometimes I would listen, but mostly listening was impossible. He also told me about himself, his life story was obviously, a long one.

“When my three days of torture, punishment for what I was becoming, was over, I wasn’t horrified like I expected. I was amazed. I could see everything, hear everything. The vampire repeated his stories again for me. His name was Cuthbert. He was born in 1628 and changed at twenty-five. He told me everything that I know. He taught me his way of hunting. We only hunted one human at a time, and only when it was necessary. We went to Scotland, to get far away from my village and the ones that I loved. I quickly became good at his way of life, even as a newborn. Cuthbert was very happy with me. He had changed others before, but I was the only one to stay with him.

“In 1936, ten years after my transformation, I went back to my village. I changed my name to Tyler, hoping that it would stop me from being recognised. I found Will. He had married Marry and had three children. I’ll never forget the feeling I had when I heard that. I had done it. I had saved Will. I waited until I was sure that it was only Will in the house, and I knocked on the door. Will was terrified, as I had expected. He thought I was a ghost, a demon, my eyes glowing crimson red.

“After a long time I convinced Will to take a walk with me. I was very conscious of the fact that Will’s life was limited - he was only human after all. I told Will that I couldn’t tell him anything, but I let him guess. He told me that he knew that a vampire had ended my life, and he had hated himself for letting me go into the forest alone. It took him only minutes to figure out what I had become. I reassured him the village was safe and I told him about my last wish.

“Will told me about his life. He had fallen for Mary at the party. He had been with her ever since. They had three children, two boys and a girl, all two years apart. Their oldest son they named Taylor, after me. As far as I know, Taylor is still alive today, but I suppose his life is coming to a close now. I visited Will many times - every year or so until his death. I’m very confident that he never told anyone.

“In 1969 Cuthbert went to France, I didn’t accompany him. He had seen enough of England, he wanted to travel. But like I told you Mattie, travel doesn’t interest me. I love England too much, America interests me too, I’d like to go there, but maybe that’s because it’s like England. So . . . I’ve been alone . . . since 1969.”

“Wow.” I whispered breathing out.

He laughed at me.

“Wow.” I repeated.

“Did you like my story?”

“Yes very much.”

“I’ve never told it to anyone before.”

“Not even to Cuthbert?”

“No, I didn’t want him to know about my human life.”

“That’s understandable. What happened to Will, if you don’t mind me asking?”

“He and Mary both lived to see the new millennium. We used to dream about the new millennium and both of us got to see it, we never thought we would.” He chuckled. “I might even see another if I’m lucky.”

I laughed too, wishing I could see it with him. I wished that Tyler would stay with us forever, stay with us long enough for me to convince him to stay. Maybe even see me become a vampire. “Why did you tell me what you wouldn’t tell Cuthbert?” I thought aloud. It made no sense. He’d only known me for two days and yet he’d told me what he had never told his creator.

“I trust you Mattie,” was his simple answer. “Not that I didn’t trust Cuthbert. I’ve grown very close to you in just two days.” He took my hand again, my heart jolting. I stared into his eyes, searching.

“So have I. You’re my best friend Tyler.”

“And you’re mine.” He said nodding. Those three words rang in my head, like music. “I’m closer to you than I’ve ever been to anyone.”

“Apart from Will.”

“Well yes. But that was very different.”

“Yes.” I agreed. I was surprised that no one had appeared during Tyler’s story. I hadn’t seen any of my family since sitting down on the sofa - with one exception. I felt as though I should share something with Tyler. Create another bond between us. Are Bella and Edward at the cottage?

Yes. Is Edward listening?

No. Tyler was still looking at me. He had probably seen my eyes go hazy as I had queried my answer book.

“Tyler, I’m scared.”

His expression changed at once, he was worried.

“Of what?” He moved so he was closer to me. His side touched mine. It was the closest he’d ever been to me. A shock coursed through my veins.

“Of leaving them.”

“Oh.” He sighed as he understood. He put his arm around me.

“If I die it would destroy them. I’m not scared of dying, but I’m scared of hurting them.”

“I don’t think you’ll die Mattie, they’ll change you. You’ll be fine.” The words shouldn’t have calmed me. Everyone had said the same thing, but when Tyler said it, I truly believed him. I leant my head on his shoulder and closed my eyes. It could have been six o’clock or midnight. I wouldn’t have known.

“Tell me about Mary.” I said quietly, letting my weary eyes stay shut.

“Well . . . she was just a normal girl in the village -brown hair, very sweet. I’m glad that Will ended up with her.”

“Hmm.” I said.

“Do you want me to get Carlisle?” his voice was soothing.

“No.” I shook my head and frowned.

“Okay then, but if you fall asleep I’m going to find him.”

I nodded, I hadn’t realised how tired I was. Tyler took a deep breath, probably getting a lungful of my scent. He didn’t even flinch. Satisfied, he sighed. I did the same, happy to be with him. And in his arms, I fell asleep.

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