Monday, April 18, 2011

CBWR? Chapter 40

For those who noticed the resurrection of I fixed that. Never post without a beta! Do what I say, not what I do! LOL

Beretta significance - if you don't know, you will find out what Edward figures it out. The conspiracy theories over on the forum are cracking me up. :)

Someone reminded me I never answered the question about the movie reference - "Morning wood the likes of which even God has never seen." From the original Dune movie - "Usel, we have wormsign the likes of which even God has never seen." It's kind of an inside joke with a group of friends of mine. You go to Starbucks - "Did they have Caramel Macciatos?" "They have Caramel Macciatos the likes of which even God has never seen!" Go to a party - "Are there Vodka Martinis?" "We have Vodka Martinis the likes of which even God has never seen!" Etc. Etc. Etc. We're pretty annoying, really.

Oh! And Mortimer Snerd was apparently one of Edgar Bergen's ventriloquist dummies . Thanks to everyone who pointed that out!

If I thought about Bella living here…

Chapter 40

I opened up an oversized door that led to a long stairway heading down.

"Is this the way?" I asked Bella. She nodded quickly, and was still breathing heavily. I reached out and put my hand on her arm. "Breathe, Bella…just breath normally – you're going to hyperventilate."

She looked into my eyes and slowly drew air into her lungs, then pushed in back out again. She nodded again and pointed towards the stairs.

"I'm pretty sure that's the way."

"You sure you want to go down there? You can stay up here with a couple of the…"

"This is why I'm here, isn't it?" Bella reminded me. "To show you the way?"

"Yeah, but…" The look on her face as she held the smoking gun flashed in front of my eyes. "If you've had enough…"

"No – I want to go with you. "

I stared at her until I was sure she really meant it, and then held the Beretta out to her again. She took it from me slowly, like the gun weighed more now than it used to, but she did take it. I gestured towards the stairway with my chin.

"Let's go."

"Hey Edward!" Alice called to me. "Take this with you."

She tossed me a key ring with three keys on it. One belonged to a Mercedes, but the other two could fit a lot of types of locks.

"Found them on Aro. May come in handy."


We walked down slowly, trying not to make any noise as we crept down, me going first and Bella at my heel, Alice and a couple others behind her. As we got to the bottom of the stairs, there was a stereotypical surveillance guy with a row of fuzzy monitors across his desk, ear-buds shoved into his ears, leaning back in his chair with his eyes closed. I pulled out the Glock with the silencer, walked up behind him and shot him in the temple. He probably never even woke up.

I looked at Bella, and she pointed towards the hallway straight in front of us. I kept her behind me as she pointed out directions as best she could remember them. We had to back up once when we missed a turn, but soon we came to a pair of double doors. One of Aro's keys fit neatly in the lock.

The smell hit me first – stale sweat, vomit, shit, and semen. It was overwhelming, and it was bad enough to make me have to fight off retching.

If I thought about Bella living here…

I couldn't think about it. Not right now.

I wondered which of us would have the worst nightmares tonight.

"'Bout fucking time," I voice I vaguely recognized called out from the other side of the room. Demetri. He didn't turn to look at us, but continued to go over a bunch of papers on the table in front of him. "You were supposed to be down here twenty minutes ago to help sort through the bitches. Uncle Aro ain't gonna like what I have to say…"

The Glock took him out, too.

His body slumped over the table, scattering the papers – papers that were grotesquely familiar with their lists of requirements and check-marked boxes of preferences – all over the floor. I glanced down the row of a dozen or so metal boxes – maybe five and a half feet tall, three feet wide and six feet deep. Each one had an electronic lock on the front of it, and a small barred window in the door.

"Need those locks released now," I said into my communicator.

"On it," Rose replied.

"Step on it," Alice snapped into her mouthpiece.

"Piss off," Rosalie replied with a laugh. "I have the hard part here, you know. Something that requires more than just the ability to rhythmically move your finger over a trigger."

Alice didn't seem to find the sentiment amusing, but then, she could hear what I could hear. Rosalie wouldn't have been able to pick up on the soft whimpering coming from those metal boxes. Bella was holding herself tight up against my side and staring at the floor with her eyes transfixed on nothing at all. I rubbed the heel of my hand against my chest, wondering if I was developing acid-reflux or something.

"You got it, Rose?" I asked after a couple more minutes, my patience waning.

"Almost," I heard her choppy breathing and the clacking of the keys. "There!"

I heard the sound of the locks as they released from right to left. I went up and opened the first one, but it was empty. The second held a young woman of maybe twenty, huddled against the wall in the back.

Even though she was blonde, older, and definitely taller, all I could see was Bella. Bella huddled against the cement she said would never get warm. Bella dragged out of this hole to a fate much worse. Bella throwing herself in front of a mad woman with a gun rather than return to this place.

Bella on her knees next to my chair, just…waiting.

The girl inside didn't look at me, and I couldn't convince Bella to walk into the tiny little cage to get her. Alice pushed past us both, and I have no idea what she said, but she managed to get the girl up on her feet, bawling her eyes out, to leave the little room. Alice yelled some orders at a couple of the younger Pack members, and they started systematically moving the occupants of each cell outside to one of the waiting vans. A couple of them fought with us, not understanding what was happening around them the same way a stray dog might snap at you. It didn't take long, though, before we had removed eight young women from the twelve cells in the basement.

None of them were old enough to be Bella's mother.

"Where will they go?" Bella asked quietly as a couple more slaves were all led up the stairs. I reached over and took her hand.

"Rose has it all planned out," I told her. "She's got a doctor and some friend of hers who works on a rape crisis line waiting in a hotel not far from here. She's taking them all there."

"My mom's not here."

"I know."

Truly, everyone one here was much closer to girl than woman in age. I didn't think there were any over twenty-one, and Bella's mom would have to be in her late thirties or early forties, at least

"We'll find her," I promised, but Bella didn't even look at me. I couldn't blame her. I didn't really believe it myself. "Where else could she be?"

"There's another level," Bella informed me. Her voice was tight and she sounded so tired. "It's…um…where they did a lot of the training."

"Can you show me?"

I left Alice and the rest of her group to sort out the remaining slaves while I followed Bella's instructions through the maze of halls and small rooms towards a locked door at the end of a long corridor. The other key on Aro's key ring fit neatly, and I opened it to reveal a steep, nasty looking staircase with only a single, bare bulb in the ceiling at the bottom.

"Stay up here," I told Bella. "Alice probably needs some-"


"Bella, I don't think-"

"I'm going with you." Her voice was just a little louder than a whisper, but it didn't leave any room for argument.

I took a deep breath, readied my gun, and took the first step down.

So far, so good, right?

Chapter End Notes:

Down down to goblin town...

I know - more cliffies, but honestly the next chapter would have been worse. Hopefully I'll be able to post a couple more tomorrow, but this is it for tonight.


  1. thinking james might be with b's mom

  2. Why do I have a bad feeling about James getting away probably.

  3. Maybe they'll get lucky and take care of 2 birds with 1 stone...Save Bella's mom and kill James...yes yes?

  4. She's been very brave. Never trust James, he's up to something. Something just crossed my mind. Could Bella be working undercover? 

  5. Shit,  James and Ranee missing..


  6. Why do I have a bad feeling about James getting away probably.

  7. Still no James...damn!

  8. I'm glad someone had the forethought to think of what to do with those poor rescued women. I'm with Edward on that one, don't feel sorry for the bastards who were party to this.