Bound and United Chapter 3

Bound and United

Part 3 of the Bound Series by HeartForTwilight

 

Chapter 3

 

AN:     A big thanks goes out to my support team who has decided to come with me once again on this wonderful ride: my beta, Princess07890/RAH07890, and my pre-reader, dj071688.  Without them, it wouldn’t be worth reading.

I own the storyline for Bound Series, but I borrowed the characters’ names from Stephenie Meyer.  No copyright infringements are implied.

 

Alec had not slept. Hour after hour was spent searching not only for his beloved sister, Bella and his dear friend, Elizabeth, but the soon to be dead Manuel.  Alec knew that once he located Manuel, they would find out who kidnapped Bella, and where the hell they had taken her.

Alec

He had seen video footage showing that Manuel had gone to the side door about thirty minutes after the reception started, turned off the alarm, and unlocked the door.  Afterwards, he went back to the front desk, and told the night auditor that he was not feeling well and was going home.  He left carrying a large black backpack, and got into a black Mercedes with tinted windows.  Alec ran the plates; it came back for a vehicle that was stolen in New York two weeks before.  He did trace the vehicle’s departure using the camera footage of multiple businesses on the Vegas strip to an apparently abandoned warehouse on the outskirts of town.  The Coven team was immediately being deployed to investigate the warehouse.

 

Alec was also was receiving continual status updates from the team members that had been deployed for the Cortez job for which Sean had hired them.  A four member team had been stationed outside of each one of Cortez’s discovered residences working in twelve hour shifts.  The Coven team had found that Roberto owned an apartment in New York, a mansion in Colombia, and a large estate in the mountains outside of Belize.  Each team was assigned to check in twice daily with movement around each location and/or any signs of Roberto himself.  The only team that was having issues was the Belize residence.  Due to the location of the house in the mountains, there was no cell service around the residence.  This complication required the team had to travel two miles west to get service.  The last time the teams checked in, none had seen Roberto, but there had been an influx of activity at the Belize house.  There was quite a bit of vehicle traffic.  Several large SUVs appeared and lots of items were taken into the house.  The team took pictures of the men and the vehicles, but also pictures of the suspicious steel bars that were being installed on a window in the back of the house.  They made sure they included all the pictures and notes in their report that they submitted.

Alec was reading over the reports and making notes for Coven team leaders when Maggie walked in.  She was seriously worried about him.  He had not slept, and was barely eating.  She knew he was blaming himself for not discovering that there could have been a problem. She had gotten a pizza, salad, and two bottles of water for them to share.  Placing the food on a small table next to where Alec was working, she walked up behind him and began rubbing his shoulders.

“Sweetheart, please take a break, and have some dinner with me.”  Maggie pleaded.

“I can’t.  I need to find Bella.”

“Alec, you have been going nonstop, and you need to eat.”

Alec knew this, and he hated to say no to Maggie, but this was all his fault.  He was the one who had ran the background checks on all the hotel workers, and he didn’t catch the issue with Manuel.  If he had, Bella would be here now, and Edward wouldn’t be  in the hospital fighting for his life.  “I can’t; I have to make this right, Mags.”

Maggie walked around Alec, pushed his chair back, and straddled his legs.  They still had not had sex, and would not until their wedding night, but she needed his undivided attention.  Taking his face into her hands, she held it so he would have to look directly into her eyes.  “Alec, it was not your fault.”

“Yes it was.”  He cried.

“No, my love, it was not.  Whomever did this, Sweetie, has covered their tracks very well.  I know you will find out who did this, and they will pay and pay dearly.  Not only will Edward be out for blood, but my brother as well.  These assholes have taken his love, his life, his very breath, and Sean O’Leary is one badass motherfucker when he has been wronged.  And you have seen and heard how serious Edward is; just because he is injured, we both know that won’t stop him.  So, Alec Volturi, stop working, and come eat dinner with me.”

Alec leaned in, and placed a long hard kiss upon her lips.  This woman made him a better man.  “Yes, ma’am.”

Across town, Sean was on his way to Edward’s hospital room to check on his status.  After a long night of tossing turning, he finally gave up trying to sleep, and got up.  The pregnancy test, still in its plastic baggy, was now in his inside jacket pocket next to his heart.  A reminder of the precious little one that he had made with his beautiful Elizabeth gave him strength and determination to find her at all costs.  He had called Alec in the wee hours of the morning, and was informed about Manuel’s actions just prior to the abduction.  Sean was even more concerned after hearing the news; this meant that it had been a well thought out plan by professionals, and not by some fly by night group who didn’t know their ass from a hole in the ground.

Walking into the hospital, he saw several of the Cullen bodyguards watching the front door, the doors leading upstairs to the ICU, and the elevators themselves.  As he passed the guard at the elevators, he gave them a nod, and proceeded on the elevator, to the waiting area.  The Cullens had become family to him, always pulling together when someone needed it, and taking care of their own with every resource available.   Carlisle looked up, and motioned him over.

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“Sean, how are you holding up, son?”  Carlisle asked, leading him away from the group.

“As well as can be expected.”  Sean answered placing his hand on the test that was still securely in its pocket.  “Carlisle, I found out that Elizabeth is pregnant.”

“How?”  Carlisle asked in shocked awe.

“I found the pregnancy test in her suitcase.  She must have been waiting for the right time to tell me, and I’m…” Sean hesitated momentarily to gather his emotions, “worried sick about what could happen her and our child.”

“We will find her, and I am sure she will do everything possible to protect the little one.”  Carlisle said, then looked around to see if anyone was within hearing range; when he felt comfortable that no one was, he leaned into Sean.  “Esme thinks that Bella is pregnant.”

“Really?”  Sean responded, shocked to have heard this news.

“Yes, and, in thirty years of marriage, I have never known her to be wrong about anything like this.  I have always trusted my wife’s intuitions.  I don’t think Edward is aware of it.”

“Carlisle, I promise you and your family that I will bring them home safe and sound.”  Sean declared.  “I have been talking to Alec; he is keeping up to date with what he is finding out about Manuel, and any clues on who did this.”

“Thank you, Sean.  Edward has always said you were a brother from an Irish mother.”  Carlisle chuckled.  “He is not going to be able to go and rescue Bella in this condition.  He is going to need someone like you taking care of rescuing his heart.”

“I will bring her back to him Carlisle.  I swear ar m’anam (I swear on my soul).”

At that moment, the doctor walked in.  “Mr. and Mrs. Cullen.”  He called out.

Carlisle and Esme walked over to him, holding each other tightly.  “Yes, Doctor.”

“We have started to reduce Edward’s sedation.  His vitals are strong, his lungs are clean, and the results of his last blood work came back clear.”

“Is he awake?”  Esme asked.

“No, but that is not uncommon.  His body is still healing, so don’t be surprised that he doesn’t wake up immediately.  It might take hours or even days.  But I feel that his wife would be of great assistance in helping him wake more quickly.  Any news on when she’ll get here?”

“She still has not arrived, but we hope she will be back very soon.”  Carlisle said.  “May we see him?”

“Yes, but only two at a time.”

Carlisle and Esme walked back into the room, and noticed that Edward’s color was returning, and they had removed the breathing tube.  Esme sat in the chair that was close to the bed, taking inventory of every inch of her son.  She began talking to Edward in a hushed tone.  She started by telling him he needed to get better, because Bella and the family needed him.

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After a little while, Esme left, and allowed Sean to come into the room.

Sean was shocked by the sight before him.  Edward was one of the strongest people he had met, but, to see him in such a vulnerable state, floored him.  There was no doubt in his mind that he knew Edward was fighting with every ounce of energy in his body to make it through this horrible ordeal, and find his way back to Bella.  Walking over to Edward’s bed, he leaned in, and placed his hand over his, giving it a squeeze.

“Hey, fucker.  I see you’re taking it easy while the rest of us are running around doing your job.”  Sean whispered.  He was immediately stunned by Edward’s response, as his heart monitor began to go crazy.  Sean knew that, on some level, Edward could hear him.  “Well, I see you can at least hear me, so listen up.  You need to fight and fight hard, don’t let those motherfuckers win.  We need to get our girls back, because you, my friend, need to be the best man at my wedding and the godfather to my baby.  Yup, that’s right, I one upped you, motherfucker.  Elizabeth is pregnant with my baby, so, fucker, you’d better wake the hell up.”  Edward’s monitor showed the continual increase in his heart rate.  Suddenly, Edward moved his hand that Sean had been holding.  “That’s it, brother; come on, Edward, you can do it.”

Edward was running through bowels of hell.  The devil himself was chasing him, yelling at him that he belonged to him now, and he was never getting out.  Edward looked over his shoulder, smiled at the devil, and gave him the finger.  “Go fuck yourself, asshole.  I am not ready to be here yet.”

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“You are mine, have been, and always will be.  Your soul is as black as night and you have an evil heart.”  The devil hissed.  “There is only evil around you.”

Edward turned and chuckled loudly.  “Oh, see that is where you are so fucking wrong.  I have my Bella, and she is the purest soul in the entire world.  And you, motherfucker, don’t own me, she does.  She owns me body, heart, and soul.  So fucker you are going to have to find someone else.”

“Fuck you, asshole.”  Devil said, then disappeared in a ball of fire.

Edward opened his eyes, and saw white ceiling tiles, like those one would find in a hospital.  Then he heard the damn beeping noise.  Fuck, where the hell was he?   He tried to sit up, but, as soon as he moved, he was overcome with searing pain.  “Ouch.”  He moaned.

“Son, stay still.”  Carlisle said, laying his hand on his arm.

“Fuck, dad, where am I, and why the fuck am I in so much pain?”

“We were attacked at the reception.  Seth was hit in the leg, but is going to be okay.  I was grazed in the arm, and you, son, were hit in the shoulder, chest, and gut.  The doctors were able to repair the damage, but you lost a lot of blood.”

“Did we get the fuckers?”  Edward asked as he tried to remember what happened.  He remembered the reception and flirting with his wife, but not being shot.

“Most of them.”  Carlisle said.

“What fuck do you mean most of them?  Who was it?”

“They caught us by surprise, and they had inside help.  We are still trying to figure that out.”  Carlisle said.

Then, it hit him, where was Bella?  He had dreamt that she was in danger, and he had to fight with the devil to get to her, but that was just a dream, wasn’t it.  “Where is Bella?”  He asked, as he looked around the room, and didn’t see her.

Carlisle knew he had to handle this carefully.  “Edward, son, she was kidnapped along with Elizabeth.  Everyone is doing everything in their power to find them.”

His love was missing, and he was lying here in this fucking bed.  It wasn’t a dream; it was a fucking living nightmare.  He would get out of the fucking bed, and find his reason for living.  As he began to sit up, Sean pushed his good shoulder down.

“Whoa there, cowboy.  You are in no shape to get out of this bed.”  Sean said.

“But, Sean, I have got to find her, she needs me.”  Edward whined.

“Edward, she is going to need you healthy.  Let me do this for you, brother.”

“Fuck no, I’m getting the fuck up out of here.  Find that fucking doctor, and get these tubes and wires off me, or I swear, I’ll fucking take them out myself.”

“Edward, stop.  You will only succeed in making yourself worse.  You died twice before they could stabilize you.  You need to stay right where you are and get stronger.  Let us do this.  I promise to keep you in the loop, but, son, you need to stay here.”

Edward didn’t like it, but he knew that Sean and his father were right.  “Dad, you make sure that Alec has everything he needs to find her.”

Edward in a hospital

“We are working on locating her and Elizabeth.  Alec is going over all the surveillance footage, and has tracked down the person who assisted the gunmen, and the Coven team is in route to capture him, and get the information from him.”

“After we get all the information from him, I want the fucker to pay for this with his blood.”  Edward demanded.

“He will, son, he will.  Now relax, and save your strength so you can get better.”  Carlisle implored.

Edward grabbed his father’s hand.  “We have to get her back.  I can’t live without her.  Dad, I just found her, we have so many plans.  Please Dad.”

“I know you do, son, and we promise you, with every fiber of my being, we will get her back to you.”

Edward shut his eyes, and tried to calm down.  What could he do to help?  He knew that Bella was good with a gun and knives, but he knew that if his captors were smart enough to take her with the tight security at the hotel, they wouldn’t be stupid enough to leave a gun or knife lying around.  Her hand to hand was good, but not knowing how many or how they had her bound, she might not be able to fight.  But, they also had Elizabeth, who was one badass woman herself.  Fuck, he had seen her take Emmett down when they were sparring at the Coven training center.  She was a superior marksman.  But they needed help.  But how?  Then, it hit him.  Was her tracker being followed?

“Have you started monitoring her tracker?  I know she was wearing her bracelet at the reception.”

“Fuck, so was Elizabeth.”  Sean said, running his hand through his hair.  He had not told Elizabeth that he had placed a tracker in one of the charms that he had gotten her.  She was the world to him, and he needed to ensure that she was safe.  She was going to be his wife and the mother of his children.  The heir to the O’Leary family would be a product of the love they had for each other.

Carlisle had pulled out his phone, calling Alec.  “Alec, have you gotten any location hits off of Bella’s tracker?  Oh, wait.  Sean, what is the tracker information for Elizabeth?”

Sean took Carlisle’s phone, and gave Alec the information, then handed it back to Carlisle.

Alec immediately began to pull up the program on his laptop to get a location on the two trackers.

After telling Alec to keep up the hard work, Carlisle spent time with Edward and Sean, trying to figure out who had done this.   The nurse came in, took Edward’s vitals, and gave him his pain medication, which lulled him to sleep. Sean and Carlisle left his room, and informed the family that Edward was going to be just fine.

Alec had been watching for Bella’s tracker, but he had only gotten one faint ping.  He couldn’t get a location, but he felt it was because she was in a plane travelling at a high altitude, however, he could be wrong.  He entered Elizabeth’s information; it was just like Bella’s, nothing.  He was happy to hear that Edward was awake, and was going to be okay.  Now he needed to get Bella home safe and sound.

The team report was in his inbox for his review.  When he opened it, he read that Roberto was spotted at the Belize house.  They also reported the arrival of a large SUV.  The report stated that four men were seen removing two unconscious women from the vehicle and into the house.  One was a brunette and one a redhead.  HOLY FUCK!!!

Picking up his phone he dialed Carlisle.  “Carlisle, I have found them, I found them!!!”  Alec yelled.

“Where? How are they?”  He asked, his heart racing.

“They are at the house we are watching for Roberto Cortez in Belize.  The team just checked in, and stated that they saw two unconscious women being carried in.”

“Why do you think it is Bella and Elizabeth?”

“Because one is a brunette and one is a redhead.”

“Fuck.  How many team members were deployed to that location?”

“Four.  They are running twelve hour shifts.”  Alec stated.

“Call them, and make them aware that they are eyes and ears for the teams being rerouted to them.  I want you to take two members from each of the remaining teams, and deploy them on staggered flights to that location immediately.  Keep at least two at each of his other residences just in case. Tell the team on location that we want every detail on that location, and video footage of everything up to this minute, and to continue videotaping all activity at that location.”  Carlisle told him, thinking about how they would get in and get them safely.

“We have a problem.  There is very limited cell service and so they have to travel two miles to get a signal.  I’m beginning to think that is why we are not getting any hits on their trackers.”

“FUCK!”  Carlisle yelled.  Of course it wouldn’t be easy.  “All right, get the team that just came off duty to turn around and go back.  I want the other team aware that they have just located Bella and Elizabeth.  I will get back to you in a little bit with the plan.”

“Sure thing.”

Carlisle turned to Sean.  “We found them.”

“Fuck, where?”  Sean asked.

“They are in Belize.”

“Who the fuck took them?  Are they safe?”  Sean asked.

“Sean, they are being held captive in the home of Roberto Cortez.”

Sean shook his head.   The man who had making his life a living hell was the one who took his reason for breathing.

“The Coven teams had already been deployed to conduct surveillance on all of Roberto’s properties once we accepted your contract.  At his mountain home in Belize, the team spotted two unconscious women being carried into the house.” Carlisle explained.

“Holy shit, motherfucking Roberto Cortez.”  Sean said, bewildered that the man who had been causing him so much grief was the one who shot Edward, and took Elizabeth and Bella.  But why?  Edward had nothing to do with the issues he was having with Roberto, but it was clear that Edward and Bella were the main targets, not him.  Why the fuck was he targeting Edward and Bella?  Was Elizabeth just collateral damage?

“Carlisle, if I hadn’t put that hit out on him, we wouldn’t know where they were.  Who the fuck knew it would be the best three quarters of a million dollars I have ever spent.  If I knew that it meant getting Elizabeth and Bella back, I would give you every last dime of my money.  How many men do you have in Belize?”

“Only four, but we will quickly deploy the remaining team members to that location.”  Carlisle said.  “Our main problem is the location of the house.  He has it up on the side of a mountain, and the team is unable to get any cell reception.  It is also possible that it could be the reason we are not receiving any hits on the girls’ trackers as well.  They can only report by leaving the site, and going two miles east to get their messages and reports out.”

“Get Alec on the phone, Carlisle.  I have a contact at the NSA that owes me a favor.  He might just be able to get us some satellite time that may just boost our reception.  Let me make some calls, and see what I can do.”

“No problem.  Sean, do you want to go to Belize?”  Carlisle asked with a knowing smirk.

“In the words of your son, FUCK YEAH!!” Sean yelled.

Sean

 

 

 

Random Rita ~ Friday Feature Fics!

Two of my friends are featured in this post, along with two of manips.

Rob Attack

ROB ATTACK

Evenin’, ladies!

Grab the Shamwows, for I come bearin’….

TATTWARDS!

Oh, yeah! TWO new Tattwards have recently crossed my path and you know I’m gonna share em with you!

ROB ATTACK{Edward manip by Clo Rodeffer, HeartforTwilightProductions / banner by Gabby’s daughter, Shawna!}

https://www.fanfiction.net/s/11895298/1/Rescue-Ink

Carlisle Cullen is a pillar of the community. He’s a humane veterinarian/philanthropist who owns an animal hospital & shelter. He’s a loving husband, a devout father, & his three sons follow in his footsteps as well as on a Harley. They’re tattooed bad boys who right the wrong to protect & save. They have hearts that fall in love with the blink of an eye. Well, except for Edward.

Rated: Fiction M – English – Romance/Family – Bella, Edward – Chapters: 2 – Words: 4,430 – Reviews: 154 – Favs: 222 – Follows: 423 – Updated: Apr 21 – Published: Apr 14 – id: 11895298

The Cullen boys don’t tolerate…

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Bound and United Chapter 2

Chapter 2

 AN:     A big thanks goes out to my support team who has decided to come with me once again on this wonderful ride: my beta, Princess07890/RAH07890, and my pre-reader, dj071688.  Without them, it wouldn’t be worth reading.

I own the storyline for Bound Series, but I borrowed the characters’ names from Stephenie Meyer.  No copyright infringements are implied.

 

The entire Cullen family was in a private waiting room provided by the hospital with all the coffee and other amenities they would require.

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The hospital’s Chief of Staff had been called as soon as the ER staff were made aware that Edward Cullen, Don of the Cullen family, was being brought in for emergency surgery for apparent gunshot wounds.  Bill Michaels, the head of Southern Hills Medical Center, was no fool.  Yes, Edward Cullen’s name was associated with crime, but he also knew how extremely wealthy the Cullen family was; if he handled this correctly, the center would be on the receiving end of a large donation.  He made sure that his best surgeon and surgical team were working on Mr. Cullen.  The other Cullen family members were also being treated with the utmost care, until Edward was out of surgery and in a private suite.  Several huge men had come to the security office and instructed them that they would be taking over security for both of the Cullen men.

In the private waiting room, everyone was patiently awaiting news about Edward’s condition.  The doctor had come by the waiting room earlier to inform the family that Edward was stable, and he high hopes that he would be able to correct the damage that had been done by the bullets.  Leaning towards caution, he also advised the family that Edward had some very severe injuries.  The doctor informed them that they had already lost Edward once already, but he had never seen someone who fought as hard as Edward had to escape death.

Esme was regaling those in the waiting room with stories of Edward’s mischievous youth.  She sat on a small couch with Rose on one side and Claudia on the other.  She found comfort in each memory she shared with the others while waiting for news.  Her precious little boy was fighting for his life.  He had so much to live for.  The family who loved him, his adoring wife who worshipped him, and, if her suspicions were correct, a new little prince or princess of the family on the way.  Esme had noticed during the dinner tonight, that Bella did not drink anything alcoholic, only water.  She could almost see the glow motherhood upon her skin.  Esme was not only worried about her son, but also her missing daughter, Bella.  She knew that Carlisle, Michael, and entire Coven family were doing everything possible to find her and Elizabeth.   She also knew that Sean O’Leary was madly in love with Elizabeth, and he would do anything possible to get her back.  Esme would think only positive thoughts about their return.  She had to remain strong, and never lose hope.

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Carlisle and Michael were doing everything necessary to control the damage of this fiasco.  They had to make sure that the local authorities remained out of the investigation and kidnapping.  Those fuckers couldn’t find their way out of a paper bag.  Carlisle called the local Chief of Police to assure him that the family had everything under control.  He then suggested that perhaps a donation to the Chief’s personal retirement fund would help him to overlook that there had been a shooting at the hotel. Carlisle wasn’t too worried about the news getting out publicly, since the affair had been limited strictly to the nation’s crime families, and the hotel had been solely occupied by the various families.  Matthew had been notified to handle his staff, and remind each of them of the non-disclosure form they had each signed prior to this event.  Michael was handling the payoff of the doctors and staff at the hospital.  No record of the surgery or stay would ever be found.

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The Coven team was hard at work reviewing video footage, monitoring the various conversations throughout the hotel that were discreetly being recorded in order to determine who had placed the hit on their bosses and where their Donna was.  Alec had hacked into the surveillance footage, and was working on a detailed report on Manuel Flores, but, whoever Manuel was, he didn’t exist before five years ago.  This troubled him greatly; it was liking to find a needle in a haystack.  On the surface, a background check and job reference check would have come back clean, and Manuel was a model employee, but Alec had found that the job reference was bogus.  Alec was currently looking for any minute trace of evidence that would lead him to find the true identity of Manual Flores.  He had already used his secret back doors in local, state, and federal levels, and began a facial recognition search on him.  He also used this software to tag him, so if he walked by most surveillance cameras around the country it would ping his program with the man’s current location.  He was just as desperate to find his sister, at all costs.

Sean was on the phone calling his capo.  “I need everyone who is not needed in Boston, to be in the air and here as soon as possible, fully armed, and ready for all out war.”

“Sure thing, Boss.  Any word on the lass?”

“No, but I won’t sleep until she is back in my arms.”  Sean proclaimed with all his heart.

“We will make that happen, Boss.”

“See you in a few hours, then.”  Sean said, as he disconnected the call.  He knew that the Cullens would have everyone out looking for their Donna and Elizabeth, but a few extra hands and eyes couldn’t hurt.

Five hours later, Edward’s doctor walked into the waiting room, still in his surgical scrub, his face mask hanging down around his neck.  “Mr. and Mrs. Cullen,”  He announced as he looked around the room; he was still amazed at the amount of people who were waiting there for news about the young man he had just worked on.

“Yes?”  Carlisle and Esme said as they came over to where the doctor was standing.  “How is he?”

“He is in ICU.  I was able to repair the damage, and I believe he will make a full recovery.  He has a great deal of strength and a huge will to live.”

“That would be his wife; he loves her more than anything.”  Esme said.

Looking around, the doctor wondered which one of these people was Edward’s wife.  “I can take her to him.  Hearing her voice will do a great deal of good, and, I think, speed up his recovery.”

Esme’s heart dropped, as the tears began to fall down her cheek.  The one person who Edward needed to help in his recovery, was gone, taken from them violently.  “Doctor, Mrs. Cullen is not around at the moment, but as soon as she gets here, we will bring her to our son’s room.”

“That would be fine.  I have him heavily sedated to allow his body to heal.  I will begin to lower the amount his sedation tomorrow around noon, if his vituals keep improving.  I suggest, if possible, everyone go home, and get some rest.  He will need your strength when he wakes up.”

“Can I just go see him?”  Esme cried.  “Just for a moment.”

“Yes, of course, but only for a few minutes.”  He said, and escorted Esme and Carlisle up to the ICU wing and into Edward’s room.

Esme gasped at the sight of her son.  He was ghostly white, and had wires and tubes coming out all over his body.

ICU Edward

“We are leaving him on the ventilator until we wean him off the sedation meds.  We want to give his lungs as much rest as possible.  Mrs. Cullen, he is doing very well, considering how bad off he was.”

“Thank you, doctor.”  Esme said as she walked over and wiped the stray piece of hair from Edward’s forehead before placing a kiss in its place.  Leaning down, she began whispering in his ear,  “You need to get better; Bella needs you, sweetheart.  Your father and I love you so much; please stay with us.”

As soon as the name Bella came from her mouth, his heart began to beat faster, setting off the heart monitor.

“Wow, did you see that?”  The doctor asked.  “What did you say to him?”

“I told him that Bella, his wife, needed him.”  Esme said.

“So, you were right.  His wife is his reason for living.  The quicker we get her here, the better his recovery.”

“We are working on it, doctor.”  Carlisle said.  He walked over to Edward, and, after taking his hand into his, he gave it a squeeze.  “Stay tough and fight.  She needs you as much as you need her.”

Carlisle reached out, and took Esme’s hand.  “Let’s go tell everyone.  I need to work some more, but you need to rest.  He is going to need us both tomorrow.”

Esme nodded her head, her eyes filled with tears.  “Okay.”

They went back to the waiting room, and told everyone how Edward was doing, and that it would be best if everyone, other than the guards, went back to the hotel and got some rest.

Emmett would not be leaving with Rose.  He would be staying at the hospital until Jasper returned.  They would be splitting their time between the two of them.  Edward and Bella had been attacked, and it was their job to ensure that Edward was secure.  Carlisle, Sean, and the Coven team would be heading up the search for Bella and Elizabeth.

Sean went back to the hotel and to the room that he and Elizabeth were sharing.  The room was so quiet; he missed seeing Elizabeth sitting on the couch, typing away at her computer.  She was one of the hardest working people he knew.  She loved her job, and he knew in his heart that she loved him.  Walking into the bedroom, he saw that the maids had been in, and picked up and cleaned the room.  On the bench at the end of the bed was her suitcase.  It was still open, because, at the last moment before going down to the reception, she had forgotten her perfume, and wanted to wear the brand that he had bought her when he was in New York the last time he was there for business.  He looked down at the articles of clothing, neatly folded in the case.  She was such a perfectionist.  It was then he noticed the corner of a plastic bag sticking out amongst her sexy lingerie.  Moving them to the side he picked up the bag.  He looked inside the bag, confused about what it was, until he turned the white plastic stick over and saw the word PREGNANT blazing through the little window.  Sean collapsed onto the floor in shock, Elizabeth was pregnant with his child.  The next in line to rule the O’Leary family.  He was going to be a father.  Hugging the bag which held the test stick to his chest, the tears poured down his face.  His mother and father would have been so happy at that moment.  They had always wanted him to find a nice Irish girl, settle down, and have lots and lots of redheaded babies.  Wiping away the tears, Sean stood with new found strength and determination.  He needed to find Elizabeth and their unborn child.

ewan-mcgregor

 

 

 

************************************B &  U***************************

After the man left the room, Bella and Elizabeth opened their eyes, and began to talk about what they were going to have to do to get out of this mess, and to get word to their families that they were alive.  The first thing was to make sure that their trackers were not taken from them or destroyed.  The next thing was to try to get a weapon of any kind as soon as possible.  Elizabeth knew that Bella was not only an expert marksmen, but was lethal with a knife; both would be of use if they could get their hands on either one.

After several hours, they felt the plane descending, and knew they were at their destination.  They closed their eyes, and pretended to still be unconscious.  They finally heard, and felt, the plane touch down, then heard the door to the room unlock, and someone come in.

“Joder, que aún están fuera . José, vienen ayudarme con estos dos.”  He said walking over to the bed.  (Fuck, they are still out.  Jose come help me with these two.)

Jose came into the room and saw the two women tied up laying on the bed.  “” Sí, Jefe, ¿qué necesitas ? “(“Yeah, Boss, what do you need?”)

” Usted agarra el pelirrojo, y voy a conseguir éste . Llévala a la camioneta, y colocarla en la parte trasera en el suelo . ”  Cristel said.  (“You grab the redhead, and I will get this one.  Take her to the SUV, and place her in the back on the floor.”) They needed to get the women in the vehicle, and then travel the thirty miles up the mountain to Roberto’s summer home.  They would need the SUV’s four wheel drive, because most of the road was not paved and not passable by any other vehicle.   Lifting up the brunette, he and Jose walked out of the plane and to the SUV.  Placing both women on the floor, he made sure their restraints  were still tied tight and shut the door.  He and Jose went up front and began their trek to the house.

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Bella and Elizabeth opened their eyes, and tried to take in as much as they could, but couldn’t really see anything in the position they were in.  Soon, the road became extremely rough, and they were bounced around like a sack of potatoes.  Elizabeth saw the distress that each bump caused Bella, and she knew this was not good for her or her unborn child.  She needed to do something to try to protect them both.  Between the bumps, she moved close to Bella, and leaned up against her; with the next bump, Bella was cushioned somewhat by her body.

“Elizabeth, that can’t be comfortable for you.”  Bella whispered.

“Bella, we need to do everything we can to protect this baby. If that means me getting bounced around even more, so be it.”  Elizabeth whispered back.

“Okay, but if it gets too much, please don’t injure yourself for me.”

“Bella, let me do this, please.”

“Okay.”  Bella huffed, because, as much as she hated it, she knew that Elizabeth was right.

With no reference of time, it seemed like forever to get to their final destination.  Once again, they closed their eyes, and hoped they could fool their captors once again.

The back door of the SUV was opened, and Cristel and Jose looked at the women.  They were amazed that the women were still out of it.  Cristel was getting worried that he may have used too much ether to knock them out.  Fuck, this could be real bad.  They picked up the women, and took them into the house, and into the room that had been set up for them.

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They had installed steel bars to the windows, and added extra deadbolt locks to the door that could only be unlocked from the outside of the room.  The room had a large, king size bed, with a bathroom attached.  Roberto had purchased an entire wardrobe of clothes to his suit his tastes and liking; he wanted his new bride to be dressed in the finest.

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They laid the women on the bed, and untied their legs and hands, then left the room and locked all the locks.  They went to Roberto’s office to find him on the phone.  The men waited for him to complete his call, but, as soon as he saw them, he quickly finished the conversation and hung up.

“¿Ella esta aqui?”  He excitedly asked. (Is she here?”)

“Si.”

“Maravillosa . Está despierta ?” Roberto asked.  (Wonderful.  Is she awake?)

“No, pero estoy seguro de que será pronto. Tengo ella y la otra mujer en la habitación.”  Cristel said.  (No, but I am sure she will be soon.  I have her and the other woman in the room.)

“¿Por qué no se despierte ?”  (Why hasn’t she awaken?”)

“El viaje fue largo y gravar , estoy seguro de que una vez que ella es capaz de descansar un poco , sin restraints que va a estar despertando pronto.”  Cristel said, hoping that Roberto would buy his explanation.  (The trip was long and taxing, I am sure that once she is able to get some rest without restraints, she will be waking up soon.)

Roberto shook his head, and hoped that she would be up soon; he couldn’t wait to get his hands on that sexy body that he had dreamed so much about.  Oh, what fun times they were going to have.

Once the men left, Bella and Elizabeth cautiously opened their eyes.  Elizabeth didn’t know if the room had been bugged, or if it had camera equipment installed, but they needed to be smart and not alert their kidnapper, before they were ready.

“Be quiet and don’t move.”  Elizabeth mouthed to Bella.

“Okay.”  Bella mouthed back.

Elizabeth looked around the room as best she could and saw that they were in a bedroom.  The window in view had bars on it.  Shit.  As much as she wanted more time to make plans, she knew she needed to get up, and really get a good look at the room.  Elizabeth slowly began to move her legs and arms, and then rolled over, yawning and rubbing her eyes.  Then she rolled over and began to check on Bella.  After a few minutes, Bella followed her lead, and began her ‘awakening’.  Soon, they were both sitting up on the bed, and Bella slowly walked to bathroom with Elizabeth following her, waiting outside the door.

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Bella quickly used the bathroom, and washed her hands.  She opened all the cabinets and drawers, and found nothing she could use for a weapon.  She did find some antibacterial cream, and rubbed it on her wrist and ankles, where the rope had dug into her skin.  Opening the door, she walked out, and Elizabeth went in.  They didn’t say anything to each other, but she knew that Elizabeth was also looking for anything that could be of use.  So, when Elizabeth exited the bathroom and shook her head no, she knew that she had also come up empty.  They walked to the steel bar covered window, and looked out.  They were in the mountains somewhere, but, where, they didn’t know.

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“Let’s go sit down, and talk quietly, then see if anyone comes in.” Elizabeth whispered as they were looking out the window.

 

“Okay.”

They sat down on a small couch in the corner of the room facing the door.

“Oh, Bella, what are we going to do?”  Elizabeth whined, hoping her kidnappers would think she was scared and not able; given the chance, she could kill them with her bare hands.

“I know, Elizabeth, I am so afraid.”  Bella said as she buried her head in her hands and cried, well, faked cried, but it was the same.

After a few minutes, they heard the locks on the door disengage, and then it opened up.  Bella grasped Elizabeth’s hand, and held on for dear life.  In walked a tall, dark Hispanic man.  He walked over, looked down at Bella, and smiled.

“Welcome to you new home, Isabella.  I can’t wait to make you mine.”

Bound & United Chapter 1

Bound and United

Part 3 of the Bound Series by HeartForTwilight

 

Chapter 1

 AN:     This chapter is dedicated to all my faithful readers and friends.  Your love and support is what keeps me going.  A big thanks goes out to my support team who has decided to, once again, come with me on this wonderful ride: my beta, Princess07890/RAH07890, and my pre-reader, dj071688.  Without them, it wouldn’t be worth reading.  I also want to thank Tracey and the wonderful EMTs who gave me information for the first aid treatment in this chapter.   You guys rock.

I own the storyline for Bound Series, but I borrowed the characters’ names from Stephenie Meyer.  No copyright infringements are implied.

 

The reception hall was in utter chaos.  The air was filled with the smell of sulfur and fresh blood.  The lights had been turned back on, fully exposing the devastation of the prior horrific minutes that changed the lives of everyone in attendance.  Bullet holes riddled the walls, tables were overturned, wine glasses smashed, and blood was seeping into the carpet.

Body

Off to the right side of the room, where the four gunmen had entered were their dead bodies.  They may have had the element of surprise to their advantage, but no one could escape the rebuttal of the Coven.  However, the surprise attack had done its damage.  Three of the Cullens had been shot.  Seth had sustained a gunshot to his left leg, which was bleeding badly.  Jack and Abby were already on the floor with him, administering first aid.  They were applying pressure to the leg, but the wound was still bleeding profusely.  Jack knew he needed to apply a tourniquet to the leg to stop the blood flow. But using one could also prove dangerous; not enough pressure and he could bleed out, leave it on too long, and Seth could lose his leg.  But, as they say “Lose a life, or lose a leg, which one would you choose?”  Jack took off his belt, and placed it around Seth’s leg, just above the gunshot to staunch the flow of blood.

Carlisle had been shot as well, but, at the moment, his flesh wound was the furthest thing from his mind.  His mind was singularly focused on his son.  Edward had taken the most hits; it was evident that he was the main target of the gunmen.  They had shot Edward in the shoulder, lower abdomen, and the chest.  Emmett was currently on the floor next to Edward’s body doing CPR, while Jasper and Sean applied pressure to the wounds to help stop the bleeding.

Esme was half standing, half leaning on Carlisle’s arm.  Hearing Emmett yell that her beloved son didn’t have a heartbeat was her worst fear brought to life.  While she may have been born into the family, the knowledge of what could happen, and seeing it become a reality, were two different things.  Her father had been a high ranking officer in the family for Carlisle’s father.  Early in the life she was exposed to the family way of life, and knew the dangers involved in being part of it.  It wasn’t but a few years after she and Carlisle had been married that her father had been gunned down in the street by a rival family.  The pain of losing one’s father is such a traumatic event that it had taught her a hard lesson; even though the family conducted business in charitable areas, they were still the mob and danger lurked around every corner.

Tonight had been such a wonderful evening; Edward and Bella had presented themselves as the rightful Don and Donna of the Cullen/Volturi families.  The Coven Commission and Teams had performed exceptionally well, and the buzz among the guests was they would be the most sought after team in the world.  Carlisle had been in a great mood and was whispering the naughty things he wanted to do to Esme when the reception was over.  They had been in their own little world when the lights went out, and the shooting began.  One second, the world was bright and happy, and next it was dark and terrifying.  As soon the first shots were fired, Carlisle had shoved her under the table, and positioned himself in front of her.   After the gunfire and screaming had finally stopped, Carlisle allowed her to come out from under the table.  The once beautifully decorated room now resembled a war zone.  Looking around the room, she saw the evidence of the destruction, but it was when her eyes landed on the sight of Edward’s blood soaked body laying splayed out on the floor that she thought her heart would stop beating.

“Where the fuck is Mallos?”  Emmett yelled as he continued to perform CPR.  He wasn’t going to let Edward die.  Emmett could not believe this shit was happening.  He would not let Edward die.

Bloody Edward

The doors to the reception hall opened and Dr. Mallos rushed in, carrying his bag, followed by Matthew Allen and several of the hotel’s security guards.  Dr. Mallos immediately began to assess Edward’s condition.  He took his pulse and found that it was there, although extremely faint.   Edward was going to need surgery immediately if there was any chance that he would survive.  “Emmett, there is a pulse, you can stop the CPR now; put this portable ventilator over his mouth and give it a squeeze every minute.  Can you do that?”

“Yeah, squeeze every minute.”  Emmett confirmed placing the bag over Edward’s mouth and squeezing.

Dr. Mallos pulled out a bag of Lactated Ringer’s solution and began a line, which would put much needed fluids back into Edward’s body, until they can get him to the hospital.  Once the IV was in, he began to pull out hemostatic pads and handed one of them to Sean, who had a stack of cloth napkins over the wound on Edward’s stomach.  When Sean pulled off the napkins, Dr. Mallos was better able to assess the gunshot wound.  Feeling around Edward’s stomach, and applying pressure, he found that the stomach area was ridged and slightly distended.  Fuck, he now knew that there was possibly internal damage.  Turning around, he looked at Matthew,

“Find out where those ambulances are now; we’re running out of time here!”  Dr. Mallos yelled.

Matthew pulled out his phone, as the door opened and two EMT teams came in, carrying stretchers and medical supplies.  The first team rushed toward Edward while the other rushed over to Seth.  Dr. Mallos filled the team on Edward’s condition and stats, as they quickly loaded him onto the stretcher.  The other team had Seth ready to transport.  Dr. Mallos was going to ride with Edward to the hospital.

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Esme grabbed Carlisle’s arm and felt something wet, as she pulled back her hand it was covered in blood.  “CARLISLE, you’re bleeding!”  She screamed, trying to get a look at the possible cause.

Carlisle took her hand and looked her in the eye.  “It is nothing but a flesh wound.”

“But you need to get it checked out.”  Esme cried.

“Right now, I need to help Bella.  Wait, where the hell is Bella?  Have you seen her?  Jasper, Emmett, where the fuck is Bella.”  Carlisle screamed when he saw the fear on his wife’s face; Bella was nowhere to be seen.

Jasper and Emmett jumped up and began looking around.  They had been so involved with helping Edward that neither of them had even noticed she was not around.  There was no fucking way she would not be by Edward’s side right now.  Sean heard Carlisle calling out for Bella, and realized he hadn’t seen Elizabeth either.  They looked underneath every table, calling out their names, but nothing.

“When was the last time you saw them?”  Sean asked to no one in particular.

Everyone stopped for a moment and thought.  “Wait, right before the shooting, Bella got up and came over to Elizabeth to go to the restroom.  They went out the side door.”  Jack responded.

Sean took off toward the door with Jasper, Emmett, and a large group of guards.  As he opened the door, he heard something knock against the bottom and looked around the corner, where he saw a 9mm and two purses laying there on the floor.

“Fuck, this is Elizabeth’s purse and gun.”  Sean said.

handgun-on-floor

“And that is Bella’s.”  Jasper said, because he had seen it on the table all evening.

“Fuck, that could only mean…Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, they’ve have been taken.  This whole fucking thing was a setup.  They wanted to take Edward out of the picture, and then take Bella.”  Sean said.  “Jesus, Elizabeth, oh my God, lass, where the fuck are you?

Jasper turned to Jack.  “You get me every fucking millisecond of videotape, and you go over that shit with a fucking fine tooth comb.  We need to find out who the fuck is responsible for this shit, and where the fuck Bella and Elizabeth are right this fucking minute.  Alec, I need you to step up in Elizabeth’s spot, we need to know what the fuck happened, and we need to know now.  While Jack is getting the video feed for us, I want you to get the team on duty right now.”

“I’m on it.”  Alec said, rushing to find his laptop, and began pulling the surveillance video feed that Jack was sending, and notifying the Surveillance team to deploy.  He was also bringing up the program that monitored the personal GPS devices of each family member.

Jasper and Sean immediately went to Matthew, who was growing paler by the minute.  “Matthew, who the fuck has access to that door?”  Jasper asked, pointing to the door at the end of the hall where they just found Bella and Elizabeth’s purses and guns.

“Jasper, it has a panic bar on it; as soon as the door opens an alarm would sound, even if there was a power outage.  I don’t think they used that door, we would have heard the alarm.”

“Is there any way to override the alarm on the bar?”

“Yes, if you have a master swipe card.”  Matthew answered.

“Then I need the name of every fucking person that has one of those cards and I need it ten minutes ago.”  Jasper growled.

Matthew rushed out of the room and to the front desk, and began pulling the list of personnel who had a master swipe card.  He knew his fucking life was on the line if he didn’t help them find out who had shot Edward, and taken Isabella.  Fuck, this was one fucked up situation.  Finding the file, he sent it to the printer, grabbed the list, and rushed it to Jasper.

Jasper took the list, and looked at the names on the list.  “Tell me about everyone on this list.”

Matthew began telling him what he knew about each one, but, unfortunately, he didn’t know each one personally.  He was the owner, not the fucking personnel manager.

“What can you tell me about this Manuel Flores?”  For some reason, Jasper had a feeling about Mr. Flores.

Matthew thought for a moment, and then remembered that he had seen the guy before.  He actually had met him yesterday.  He was doing a walk thru the reception hall, when he noticed the side door open. When he went to investigate, he was met by Manuel.  He gave him some excuse about checking the doors in the hall to make sure they were secured.  Looking back, he realized that this should have raised a red flag, but it didn’t.

“Shit, Jasper, I caught him coming into the reception hall yesterday from the side door.”

“WHAT THE FUCK, MATTHEW??!!”  Jasper bellowed.  “And why the fuck was he even out there?”

“He said he was checking the doors in the hall to make sure they were secure.”

“MOTHERFUCKER!!!!!  I want every piece of information you have on that son of a bitch, and I want it now.  Do you really want me to tell Edward that you allowed his beloved wife to be taken?”

“No, man, Jesus, don’t do that.  I’ll do anything you ask; I had no idea. I swear on my life, man.”  Matthew nervously said, scared he would be dead by morning.

Jasper watched Matthew’s face, and knew he was telling the truth, but he needed answers and he needed them now.  “Get the fucking information, and we’ll see what happens.”

Matthew hands were shaking so bad, and his adrenaline was pumped so high, he almost pissed himself.  Jasper was one scary motherfucker.  He had never noticed it until today.  Like they always say, “You have to watch the quiet ones.”  He rushed to the personnel office and gathered up Manuel’s folder, which held all the information that the company had on him.

 

******B&U*****

 

“Bella, my love.  Bella, open your eyes.”  The voice whispered through the fog.  Her eyelids were so heavy, she couldn’t seem to open them.  But the voice reached out to her, trying to bring her out of the deep frightful nightmare that was tearing her soul in two.  A nightmare where Edward was dead.

“Bella, come on baby you can do it.”  The voice said once again.  The tone was so familiar, so soothing, that it gave her the strength to fight through the fatigue.

Struggling to open her eyes, she was finally able to open them a wee bit.  She blinked several times, trying to focus her vision, because there was only fog before her.

Dreamy Bella in pink

The dark, eerie fog was so dense that she was unable to see anything.  Finally, after forcing herself further, her vision improved and fog began to dissipate.  There, in the far distance, she saw a blazing wall of fire; within the red glowing flames appeared a figure walking toward her, each step coming closer and closer.  As the figure drew closer, she saw it was her beloved Edward.  But, how? The last thing she remembered before going to sleep was Emmett calling out that Edward had no heartbeat.  But here he was.  Closing her eyes, she kept thinking This is not real.  This is a cruel joke.  But, as she opened her eyes, Edward was standing in front of her.

mafia Edward 3

“Oh, my love.”  Edward murmured.

“How?”  She asked, confused how the love of her life was here.

“Do you really think I could leave you so easily?  I have walked through hell to get to you.  That fucker thought he could keep me, but I let him know that that was not happening, well, at least not for a long time.”

“I don’t understand.”  She said, shaking her head.

“Our love has transcended time and space.  I know you are confused, but you must listen to me.  There isn’t much time.  When you wake up I need to you fight and don’t lose hope.  You have your tracker on and we will be coming for you, Sweetheart.”

“I am so scared, Edward.  I don’t know what is happening.”  She cried.

“I know, my love, but you are so strong.  Remember all your training, and look for a way out.  Stay with Elizabeth; together, I know you will both make it.  I am so sorry, but I must go.”

“NO!  Edward, please, please, don’t go!”  Bella screamed.

“You might not be able to see me, but I will always be with you here.”  Edward said, pointing to her heart.  “I love you with all that I am.  Now wake up and fight for us.”

“I love you and I will fight for us, but I have something I need to tell you.”  She said.  “I’m…”

Just as she was about to tell him about the baby he was gone, a wisp of smoke, gone.   Fuck.  She knew that she could no longer afford to wallow, or give in to fear.  With a new found strength and determination, she opened her eyes.  She was on a bed, her hands and feet were tied with rough rope.  Unlike Edward’s wonderful rope skills in the playroom, where the rope dug into her skin in a glorious euphoric pain, these ropes were tied so tight that it was cutting into her flesh with each movement.  Looking around, she saw Elizabeth lying beside her, with her hands and feet bound in the same manner.

“Elizabeth.  Wake up.”  Bella whispered, hoping not to draw the attention of her captors, whomever they may be.  Elizabeth didn’t stir, so, carefully and slowly, she moved her tied feet over to Elizabeth’s and gave them a push.  “Elizabeth.”

Bella saw Elizabeth’s eyes begin to move and slowly she opened her eyes.  “Bella.”  She said, her voice hoarse and raspy.  “What happened?”

“We’ve been kidnapped.”  She whispered.

“Fuck.  Have you seen who did it?  Do you know where we are?”  She asked.

“No, but from the looks of the room and the way I feel I think we are in a plane.”  Bella said.  The more awake she became, the worse her stomach felt.  Damn, she couldn’t afford to get sick; she needed to be strong, not throwing up at the drop of a hat.

Airplane

“Are you okay?” Elizabeth asked.

“I feel a little nauseous, but I am okay.  How do you feel?”

“I am a little nauseous also, it must be the drug they used to knock us out.  How are doing mentally?  I mean, I remember hearing Emmett yelling about Edward.”  Elizabeth asked, knowing the how close Edward and Bella were.

“He is fine.”  Bella proclaimed with confidence.

“Bella, it’s okay, Sweetie; I know you heard the same thing I did.  Bella, he was shot.”

“I know, I know.  And, as crazy as this may sound, he came to me when I was knocked out and told me that he was fine and for me to fight.”

“Bella, please don’t do that to yourself.”  Elizabeth pleaded.

“Elizabeth, I know in my heart he is alive and he will find us.  He reminded me that I have my tracker.”

“Fuck, I forgot about that.  They didn’t take off your bracelet?”

“Nope, and Elizabeth, I see you’re wearing your bracelet as well.”

“But, this is the one Sean gave me.”  She responded, slightly confused.

Bella giggled softly.  “Elizabeth, I would bet you a million dollars that it is chipped.”

“He never told me.”  Elizabeth gasped, thinking about the charms that he had given her, when she remembered the Celtic heart, and how he how told her how special it was.  That little fucker.  When she got out of this, she was going to borrow one of Edward’s riding crops and give Sean the whipping that he deserved.

“We need to stay strong.  I know that our family will come for us.”  Bella said.  Then she heard the lock on the door releasing.  “Close your eyes and pretend you are still out.”

They closed their eyes and heard the door open and footsteps come toward the bed.  “Ellos aún están fuera de Boss.”  The man said.  “Sí señor. Te dejaré saber tan pronto como se despiertan.”   (Translation:  They are still out.  Yes, Sir.  I will let you know as soon as they are awake.)

Guy on the Plane

The man stared down at the women.  Damn, they were beautiful chicas.  He would love to get to see them without their clothes, but he knew the Boss would kill him on the spot.

After Bella heard the door close and the lock engage, she opened her eyes.  “Elizabeth, who the fuck was that?”

“Bella, I don’t know, but I have an idea that it has something to do with the man we have a hit on.  I think our kidnaper is Roberto Cortez, and, if so, we are in some serious danger.”

 

 

 

 

Chapter 6 of Flames of Desire

We ran up the steps and pushed open the large wood doors to St. Michael’s.  I was happy to see that the sanctuary was not filled with the thick smoke that we had to endure during the last few hours.  “Isabella, my love, you can remove the handkerchief; the air is fine.”

Isabella removed it from her mouth, showing the only spot on her beautiful face that was not tainted with soot and dirt from our journey.  Even covered in the fire’s residue, she still was the most beautiful woman in the world.  I was in awe of her strength during this terrible event that we were experiencing.  I had no doubt that most females in this situation would be swooning from fear, but not Isabella.

Looking around, I could see that it was clear that no one was here, until I saw movement towards the front of the church, near the altar.  Offering Isabella my arm, I led us towards the altar.  As we drew closer, I could see that Father O’Malley was busy removing the various vessels and linens from the altar.

“Father, it is so good to see that you are safe and sound.”  I said as I shook his hand.

“Oh, young Mr. Masen, it is always good to see you.”  Father O’Malley said, then turned to Isabella.  “Miss Swan, I hope you are well.”

“I am, Father.  It has been a frightful night, and I am so worried about the people of Chicago and my family.”

“Your father and brother, I am sure, will take every precaution to ensure their safety and the safety of their fellow firemen.  Where is your mother?  Somewhere safe, I hope.”

“Yes, Father. She was volunteering at the hospital; my prayers are that she is still there, within the safety of their walls.”  Isabella cried.

“I have faith that she is safe, child.  My prayers are that the people of the city find shelter during this horrible night.”  Father O’Malley said.  “Mr. Masen, I am sure that Mr. Swan would be greatly thankful for you keeping Miss Swan safe.”

“Miss Swan’s safety and wellbeing is paramount to me, Father.  Without Miss Swan, Father, my life would not be worth living.”  I proclaimed as I patted her on the hand.  She had lost her gloves during the trip, so I was given the pleasure of touching her soft hand.

“I see.  I am afraid after tonight there will be many lives taken and many hearts that will be broken.”  Father O’Malley then turned back to the altar to continue removing the precious items.

In that moment, I knew that, if this was my last night on this earth, I wanted to be united in matrimony to the woman that made my short life feel complete.  “Father O’Malley, please excuse us for a moment.”  I said.  I led Isabella over to the to one of the   side pews.   As I stood before her, I took a deep breath and prepared to share with her my heart’s desire.

“Isabella, my love, I need to share with you my feelings and an idea that has suddenly occurred to me.”  As I took both of her hands in mine, I chanced a look into her eyes, and knew that she was closely paying attention.

“My dear, dear Isabella, I have loved you since the first time I had the privilege of laying eyes upon you.  I have thought of you during every waking moment, as well as every unconscious one.  I have always felt that we were destined to spend our lives together.  This horrific tragedy has caused me to realize that life is fleeting, and you need to live each and every moment as if it were your last.  Isabella, we don’t know if we’ll see tomorrow, and I do not want to spend another day without you as my wife.  What I am proposing is to request that Father O’Malley unite us in holy matrimony this evening.  I can only hope that you feel as certain and sure of your affections for me, and will agree with this request.”  I paused momentarily to ensure that Isabella could contemplate the full measure of what I was proposing.  “What say you, darling?  Will you become my wife?”

Expecting to experience a small amount of pause for Isabella to deliberate my proposal, I was exceedingly surprised and joyous as at her immediate response.

She wrapped her arms around my neck and responded excitedly, “Oh, Edward, I would be honored to be your wife.  I have felt the same since first setting sight on you as well.”

“Shall we make our request to Father O’Malley, then?”  I hated to rush this monumental decision, but with the lingering danger of the fire, time was of the essence.  I clasped Isabella’s delicate hand, and escorted her back to the altar, drawing Father O’Malley’s attention.

The Father turned from his task, “Yes, my children?”

“Father, you have known Isabella and myself since we were children.  You know our souls, and now we would like to share with you our hearts.  You see, Father, we are deeply in love.  We know tomorrow is not a promised gift, and the fire currently raging beyond these walls has pressed this fact ever clearer to us.  If today was our last day, we would wish to spend it as husband and wife.  Father, we would like you to unite us in marriage on this very evening.”  I looked at him hopefully.

“Isabella, is this true?  You and Mr. Masen are in love, and wish for me to unite you both in holy matrimony?”

Isabella looked deep into my eyes with all the love and admiration any man could hope to attain from his intended.  She turned her gaze to Father O’Malley and responded, “Yes, Father, with all my heart and soul.”

“Well, it is a bit unorthodox, but drastic times call for drastic measures.  Let me get my vestments and perform the liturgy.  We can ask some of the parishioners scattered about the church if they would be willing to witness your marriage.”

Father O’Malley walked away to get his vestments.  While he was away, I took a few minutes to talk with my fiancée.  “Isabella, you have no idea how excited I am at this very moment.  I am going to do everything I possibly can to share a very long, and wonderful life with you.”

“That is my hope and prayer, also.  I want to fill our home with love, have your children, see our dreams come true, and die at a ripe old age within your arms.  Oh, Edward, I do love you so.”  She declared with such reverence.

“Oh, my love, so do I.”  It was then that Father O’Malley returned with two ladies who were also seeking refuge in the sanctuary.  You could tell that they had come from the fire, which was evident from their haste in seeking shelter.  They were trying to clean some of the dirt and smoke from their faces.  I looked at Isabella and smiled, she had not seen the shape that her face was in and I knew she would have been disheartened by her appearance.  “My love, do you want to take a moment to freshen up before we start?”

She looked down at her soot covered hands and clothes.  “Oh my word.  Yes, please.  I must be a fright.”  She fussed.

Shaking my head and brushing my hand across her cheek.  “Never, my love, never.  Make haste, because I can’t wait to have you as my wife.”

She nodded and walked toward the water closet.  I turned to Father O’Malley and smiled.  “Father, do you have a location that I may get some of the soot off me, before the nuptials?”

“Yes, sir.  Come with me.”  He replied, leading me to a room in the front of the sanctuary.  He opened the door and we walked into the Father’s office.  “Over there is a small sink and a clean towel.”

“Thank you so much, Father.”  I declared.  I went over to the sink, which had a mirror over it and proceeded to wash as much of the dirt as I could from my face and hands.  Looking down at my suit, I was upset with the horrible stains and burn spots, but there was really nothing I could do about it at the moment.  Finishing up, I wiped dry my face and hands, and turned back to Father O’Malley.

“You look fine, Mr. Masen.”  He laughed.  “She doesn’t care about your outward appearance, she sees the real you, and what a wonderful kind heart you have.”

 

“Thank you, Father.”  I said.  We turned and walked out of the room, back into the sanctuary.  I looked around and didn’t see Isabella.  One of the ladies walked up to me and with a smile.

“Sir, you are to wait for her with Father O’Malley in the front of the church.”

Father O’Malley and I walked to the front of the church. When we stopped, someone began playing Mendelssohn’s “Wedding March”.  Father O’Malley motioned to the back of the church and when I turned, Isabella was walking toward me.  I don’t know how, but she was wearing a different gown.  This one was a white satin wedding gown, with long sleeves and a sheer high neck collar.  On her head was a lovely lace veil and her beautiful hair was pulled back into a netting at the base of her neck.  She was carrying a bouquet of white flowers.  She was like an angel walking towards me.  When she reached Father O’Malley and me, she turned and smiled sweetly to me.

“Dearly beloved, we are gathered here in God’s presence to witness and to celebrate the marriage of Edward Anthony and Isabella Marie, and to ask God to bless them that they may be strengthened for their life together. We are called to rejoice in their happiness, and find in their love a reason to renew our own commitments to those whom are near and dear to each of us. God gave us marriage for the full expression of love between a man and a woman so that husband and wife may cherish and delight in one another; comfort and help each other in sickness, trouble and sorrow; provide for each other in temporal things; pray for and encourage each other in the things that pertain to God; and live together faithfully all the length of their days.

“Edward, will you have this woman to be your wife, and will you promise your life to her in all love and honor, in all duty and service, in all faith and tenderness, to live with her, cherish her, according to the ordinance of God, in the holy bond of marriage?”  Father O’Malley asked.

“I will.”  I declared with all my heart.

“Isabella, will you have this man to be your husband, and will you promise your life to him, in all love and honor, in all duty and service, in all faith and tenderness, to live with him, and cherish him, according to the ordinance of God, in the holy bond of marriage?”

“I will.”  Isabella said.

“Please join hands and repeat after me.  I, Edward, take you, Isabella, to be my wedded wife; and I do promise and covenant; before God and these witnesses; to be your loving and faithful husband; in plenty and in want; in joy and in sorrow; in sickness and in health; as long as we both shall live.”

I repeated the vow, pouring everything in my heart and soul in each word.  After I finished I gave her hand a slight squeeze.  Looking into her eyes, I saw that they are filled with unshed tears.  Father O’Malley said the vow that Isabella was to repeat and as I stared upon her lovely face, I was amazed by how boldly she spoke them to me.

“I, Isabella, take you, Edward, to be my wedded husband; and I do promise and covenant; before God and these witnesses; to be your loving and faithful wife; in plenty and in want; in joy and in sorrow; in sickness and in health; as long as we both shall live.”  She exclaimed so reverently.

“Do you have a ring?”  Father O’Malley asked.

I wanted to have the ring that I had planned to go on her finger, but it was at my home and I didn’t want to chance going back out into the fire to get it.  But I did have the pinky ring that my grandfather had given me.  Slipping off the ring, I slid it onto her dainty finger.  “This ring I give you; in token and pledge; of our constant faith; and abiding love.”

“By the authority committed unto me as a Minister of the Church of Christ, I declare that Edward Anthony and Isabella Marie are now Husband and Wife, according to the ordinance of God; in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.”  Father O’Malley said.  Then with a large smile on his face.  “You may kiss the bride.”

At that moment, my heart was pounding so loud, it was as if a herd of cattle was racing in my chest.  Leaning in slowly, I placed my lips upon hers and began to share our first kiss, but, it was not only our first kiss, but the first kiss as husband and wife.  I never knew that anything could feel so wonderful.  As the glorious kiss ended, I pulled back and was granted with a loving smile and a bright red hue on her cheeks.  “I love you.”

“As I love you.”  She said.

“Congratulations.  May God get us through this night and you have a long life together.”  Father O’Malley announced.

“Amen, Father, I hope so as well.”

After the ceremony we sat in one of the pews and talked and prayed.  I found out that one the ladies that was in the church had packed her wedding gown in her bag, before she ran from her home.  It was the same gown Isabella was wearing.  She got up and went to change back into the dress she was wearing before the wedding and thanked the lady over and over again for allowing her to wear it.  I got the lady’s name and address and knew I would be sending a monetary thank you to her and her family, when we got through this night.  I was determined that we would make it through.

 

We discussed how we would tell our families, but felt sure they would understand our reasons.  My life was forever changed not because of the fire, but because I now had the love of my life as my wife.  I couldn’t wait to start this adventure with her.  The fire was causing horrific damage to our city, but it caused flames of desire, amongst the flames of destruction.

 

Authors Note:

That is the end of this story.  I will be posting an epi, to look into the future and see what happened to our couple.

Nomination

I am so honored that someone nominated me and my stories.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart.                                   Dear HeartforTwilight

CONGRATULATIONS! The Fanatic Fanfics Multifandom Awards would like to inform you that you have been nominated in the following categories:

Favorite Crime Fanfic – Bound to the Family
Favorite Work-In-Progress Fanfic – Bound and Dangerous
Favorite Banner Artist
Favorite Manip Artist

Voting will start on April 11, 2016. We will take votes for three weeks before closing on May 2, 2016.

Feel free to let your readers know about this event, and may the odds be ever in your favor.

-Fanatic Fanfics Multifandom Awards
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