September 24, 2013
Today we had a scavenger hunt of sorts. It wasn’t the actual game. One of us actually lost something somewhere and couldn’t find it. Even though vampires remember everything with impeccable detail, if something falls out of say a pocket while we’re preoccupied, we may not feel it and then have a bit of a dilemma on our hands. Which is precisely what happened today. I was preoccupied with my NYT when Bella walked into our living room with a perplexed expression and asked:
“Where’s my phone?”
We all looked at her puzzled; and by we all I mean all of us including all of the wolves, Corin and Keith. She, Edward, Rose, and Emmett had started their second year at Dartmouth. They had all tried to get their classes in the evening so that way they didn’t have to deal with that off occasion of sunlight and skipping class. Today though no one had class and so everyone was just lounging around being lazy. Everyone that is except Bella who was now looking very confused in our living room.
“Well honey where did you last use it or see it?” Esme, ever the practical one, asked.
“That’s the thing, I don’t remember. I’ve been carrying it in my pocket a lot recently and then this morning I reached in to check if my mom called and I couldn’t find it.”
“That doesn’t surprise me in the least. You’ve been wearing the same sweatshirt for like a week!” Alice said rather over dramatically while everyone rolled their eyes at her.
“Enough Alice. Now isn’t the time for a clothing lesson; we need to help Bella find her phone. With her mom in New York, she needs to keep in touch with her.” I said sternly putting an end to any bickering that might have started. Bella shot me a grateful look while Alice just grumbled something under her breath.
“All right well the best thing we can do is retrace your steps in the last few days. I’ll ask if Rogue and the others could do a fly by in some areas of the forest as well; after all you did go hunting twice.” Corin pointed out.
“And had classes, went to the grocery store, and took me to school the other day.” Nessie added.
“That’s a lot of ground to cover. Good thing we have so many people in the area; save for Maria and John that is.” Keith said with a smile.
“Where are they?” Leah, who was sitting next to him, asked curiously.
“They actually have distant relatives who are also Watchers still living in Italy. They refused to leave the boot, so to speak. So every so often John and Maria pop in for a visit and this happened to be one of those times.” Keith answered with a snort. Everyone nodded.
“So now what do we do?” Seth asked.
“Well, we need to split up into groups and go search all of the locations Bella’s been to in these last few days.” I replied.
“Sounds good. Rogue, Corin, the other Watchers and I will take the woods as that’s the largest area and we can cover a lot very quickly.” Keith said thoughtfully.
The others agreed and quickly started dividing places to go. Seth, Leah, Jacob, and Nessie were going to go back to their high school as classes were done for the day and see if they could find it there. Dartmouth being a massive campus and as Bella had classes in almost every corner of it, this required Alice, Jasper, Rose, Emmett, and Edward to go there. Esme and Bella decided to head to the grocery store and see if they could locate it there; perhaps someone had decided to turn it into the Lost & Found. I volunteered to stay home and search the entire house, Bella and Edward’s cottage and around the outer perimeter of the house. Once we all had our “assignments”, everyone got into cars, phased, or flew into the air toward their respectful locations.
I stayed behind not only to look around the property but to also field calls from the others as they would come in whether they had found anything or not. I sighed to myself as I zipped around the house and property to no avail. The phone was definitely not here. And Bella had tried calling it but after lord knows how many days, the battery had probably died or been disconnected from the phone altogether if it was flung from her pocket hard enough. I wouldn’t be surprised if it was in more than two pieces. These humans need to make these cellphones more durable; they’re so flimsy.
But I digress. The first phone call I got was from Bella and Esme who were at the grocery store saying it wasn’t anywhere there and the store manager said no one turned in a phone into the Lost & Found; they were headed back home. Esme was trying to keep Bella from getting discouraged. Right on their heels came another phone call with the same results and this one was from Nessie saying she and the others had no luck at the high school either. She was sitting atop of Jacob and the wolves were running back home. This left only the Dartmouth campus and the forest at large where the Watchers had spanned out in a grid formation to see if they could spot anything. Between their lightning speed, keen eyesight, and flying abilities; we knew most of New Hampshire would be covered under an hour and no stone would be left unturned.
The wolves along with Nessie ran into the front yard just as Esme and Bella pulled up in Esme’s car. Bella was frowning; Leah, who was still in wolf form came to stand next to Bella and nudged her shoulder with her massive head. Bella looked over at her and shrugged. Leah looked Bella in the eyes as if to say everything will be ok. Then the wolves bolted to the side of the house to phase back. When they returned, my phone went off again; this time it was Edward.
“Carlisle, we’ve searched every corner of Dartmouth; the phone is definitely not here.” I sighed exasperated.
“Any luck from the others?” Edward asked.
“Everyone has struck out. We haven’t heard from Keith and the other Watchers yet which means they’re still combing the forest.”
“So that still leaves a sliver of hope it can be found. It couldn’t have fallen off the edge of the world.” Then there was a pause. “Can I speak to Bella please?”
“Of course.” I said with a smile giving the phone to Bella. She took the phone from me and sighed into it making Edward giggle a little bit on the other end.
“Don’t worry, love, we’ll find it.”
“It wouldn’t be that big of a deal if my mom wasn’t in New York and it being the only number she has plugged into her actual cellphone.”
“That’s certainly understandable. None of us would be racing around like lunatics if that wasn’t the case. We’d just get you a new one and that would be it.”
“It’s such a pain that you can’t even keep your old number anymore. I’ve had this number forever. But if I want a new cellphone, I’d have to change it to a New Hampshire number instead of a Washington one. Ugh!” Bella said.
“It’s inconvenient that’s for sure. Bella, we’re heading home now so I’ll see you soon. Let’s hope the Watchers have better luck.”
“Amen to that.” Bella said and hung up the phone.
It took another 15 minutes for Edward and the others to drive back from Dartmouth. Once our family was all accounted for, we headed inside the house to wait on the Watchers. We didn’t have to wait long. 20 minutes later, there was a light tapping on the door and Keith entered—given how close we’ve all become, there was no need for the Watchers to ring the doorbell–smiling and holding Bella’s phone in his hand. Bella’s eyes grew wide and she took her phone back. We all smiled; as usual the Watchers came through.
“Where on earth did you find it?” She asked.
“I will admit it wasn’t easy. We looked high and low and it wasn’t until we were on our way back, I decided to fly a little lower to the ground in this one location where I presumed you were hunting the other day, and low and behold there it was next to a rock almost hiding in its shadow. That’s also probably why no one saw it when we flew by the first time. The phone was in two pieces. I found the battery about 12 yards away. It must have been flung out of your pocket when you went in for the kill on whichever animal.”
“Good job Keith!” Edward said and clapped him on the shoulder.
“Is it broken?” Leah asked Bella as she peered over her shoulder.
“Doesn’t seem like it. It definitely needs to be charged though.” Bella looked at the phone carefully from each angle to make sure nothing had been nicked or chipped in anyway. Surprisingly, it was whole; other than the fact that the battery had separated from it.
As we all stood talking, suddenly Alice gasped and her eyes went spacey; vision time. Before we had time to react to her, the doorbell rang. For a long moment we weren’t sure which to respond to first. The doorbell rang again and that meant it wasn’t anyone we knew so whatever Alice was seeing had to wait though Jasper was already near her looking very concerned just as Edward read what was in her head and his eyes widened in shock and he looked at the front door then at Bella.
I opened the door to find two strange human men standing on our porch. They were dressed in business suits and looked very professional; they also looked extremely uncomfortable.
“Is this the Cullen residence?” The one on the left asked cautiously.
“It is; I’m Dr. Cullen. Can I help you with something gentlemen?” I asked concerned.
Before they had time to answer, I saw Rogue touch down silently a little ways away from the porch. Keith must have telepathically called for her as soon as Alice gasped. Her gaze was very intense but at the same time it radiated sorrow. She didn’t move a muscle but just waited for the two men to continue, which they did:
“I’m detective Sanders and this is detective Pierce. We are looking for a Mrs. Bella Cullen.” We all froze at that point.
“I’m Bella Cullen. What is this about?” Bella stepped forward still holding her phone in one hand and battery in the other.
The two detectives looked at each other; then the one named Pierce looked straight at Bella and said:
“Mrs. Cullen, I regret to inform you……..”
To be continued……
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