Even filled with desperation, my body still quivered with the echo of Jacob's touch.Only my mind, far more understanding of my true desires, cooled the burningtouch; narrowed the build; hardened the lips and sweetened the breath. Long andblack became bronze and unruly; terracotta became diamonds; friend becamelover, shifter became marble.My mind struggled to comprehend all the contrasting emotions swirling in me. Thedesire to continue with Edward what was started with Jacob; the gut wrenchingguilt of my betrayal; my fear of Edward's response all bounced around competingfor my attention as I walked back.Deftly stepping over fallen branches and uprooted trees, I pushed the doubt asidewith the assurance that despite my foibles, Edward was above them. It was absurd,as he would say, that while my axis shifted, to think that his world would have evenrumbled. My fear for his reaction was only juxtaposing my emotions and reactionsupon him. I might be his weakness, but that did not make him weak.He would have read my intentions and motives through the fog of Jacob's lust asclearly as the blush on my cheeks. Despite all he couldn't know, he was Edward. Hewas my Greek God, all knowing and powerful, and not even the feeble confusions of a hormonal teenage girl would hinder that. He knew me to be merely human, knewthat we were fallible and we fail; that we give in to temptation. It may not affecthim, but his empathy would give him the grace to put me back together. To forgiveme my imperfections and someday soon, change me so we would be equal in allthings.Emerging into the snowy clearing of our camp, I calmed my wildly guilty heart andsteadied my frantic breathing, knowing I must not appear to be harmed. If therewas one flaw of my vampire, it was his unilateral devotion to my safety. I did notrisk my relationship with Edward to save Jacob's life only for him to lose it again.Allowing my guilt to come forward and preparing to apologize, I moved towards thetent and hopefully my Edward.The snow crunched beneath my boots, insuring that he knew of my approach, butneither Seth nor Edward made a move towards me. The only sign of recognition of me was an eerily disapproving growl from the young wolf at the door. Who it wasdirected at, I couldn't fathom, but it was abundantly clear he already knew whathad happened. As apparently did the rest of the pack.Bracing myself to grovel, I opened the tent still surprised he had not grabbed methe moment I left the woods, and slid through the hole. I allowed my eyes to adjustfrom the gleaming snow to the glistening vampire in the darkened tent. As my eyesfell on him, the inevitable traitorous tears began, my confidence dwindled, and myguilt drowned me. I only wish this was the worst of it, but one look at Edward's faceforewarned me my own foolishness would be the least of which to weigh down myconscience.