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[personal profile] borax38
It's been a rather hectic week, meaning I didn't have time until today to work on the fic. So, here's a quick chapter.

Summary: The Volturi hear about Artemis Fowl's prodigious intelligence and decide to turn him into a vampire and make him join the guard. Artemis must not only protect the People from the Volturi's greediness, but there's also the matter of punitive expedition concerning the Cullens. Post TTP and during Breaking Dawn. A/H, canon Twilight couples.


On fanfiction.net

Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6




Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.


“Holly alive,” he mouthed. “Bring reinforcements, and Number One. Battle between vampires about to happen. They will be weakened by the end of it. Come quick. Vampires destroyed by fire.”

He didn’t have time to say more. At the other end of the field, the Cullens were waiting for them.



Chapter 7: Meet the Cullens


Only they weren’t alone. The Cullens were a coven of eight, nine at best if one counted the immortal child they had created. What Artemis was an important group–he counted quickly: there were twenty-six of them. The whole Volturi group–counting Sulpicia and Athenodora, who weren’t supposed to fight–were only thirty-three. They may still outnumber the Cullen’s group, a fight would still be deadly.

The Volturi didn’t falter once, advancing in a formation Artemis had learned during his trip, and Felix continued just as eagerly. The weight of Felix’s arm on Artemis’ shoulder diminished as his attention focused more on the group in front of them. Behind them, he could hear the witnesses following silently, Irina hovering hesitatingly between the guard and the witnesses.

At the opposite side of the field, Artemis could make out the Cullen clan standing in the center of the formation. He had heard their description. Blond, beautiful Carlisle and his wife Esme, huge Emmett and his own stunning wife Rosalie, Edward and Bella, with the child her arms …

No Alice and Jasper. Artemis scanned the group again, but nowhere could he find anyone fitting the description of the thin, diminutive vampire and her scarred companion. The Volturi brothers noticed it too, and their disappointment was visible. To be precise, Marcus didn’t show his feelings apart from boredom, but Artemis expected this by now. At the other end of the field, the vampire Edward snarled, and turn to talk to his Bella.

He can read my mind right now, Artemis remembered. If he could see that Artemis didn’t want to fight, maybe it would help. If he could see that he had to save Holly …

It was foolish to think as much. Edward Cullen had loved ones to save, adding two complete strangers to the lot was presumptuous.

The Volturi were still marching, going straight into battle, when movements and soft footfalls behind the other coven attracted Artemis’ attention. Coming slowly of the forest, was a pack of wolves, which halted right next to the Cullens. An enormous pack of wolves. A pack of sixteen enormous wolves.

The Volturi stopped dead in their tracks. Not far, Artemis heard Holly gasp.

“Ford, I’ve never seen anything like that!”

Artemis was betting that neither had Aro. The Volturi’s chief seemed to be thinking quickly. Clearly, if he had hoped to go straight into battle earlier, it wasn’t an option with the wolves anymore. Their guard was outnumbered by far. It would be foolish for them to go headfirst into battle, they would have to plan.

Artemis couldn’t help his grin. Fighting, even as a vampire, had never been something he was good at. Tactical planning, on the other hand, had.

He saw the Cullen’s leader, Carlisle, make the first move and approach the Volturi. Felix crouched defensively, but he didn’t seem overly anticipative. It was a well known fact that Carlisle Cullen was a peaceful creature, and would never start the fight.

As he neared the Volturi line, he opened his arms and started talking:

“Aro, my old friend. It’s been centuries.”

It was obvious Felix didn’t like the greeting, but he stayed unmoving, that is until Aro and Renata, his pawn, decided to break ranks. Immediately, the tense formation expressed it’s disapproval and anxiety.

Honestly, Artemis thought, a thing as old as Aro should be grateful for death if it came to him. Why was everybody so anxious about him?

Aro calmed his soldiers before talking to Carlisle:

“Fair words, Carlisle. They seem out of place, considering the army you’ve assembled to kill me, and to kill my dear ones.”

The Cullen leader denied it, and tried to explain, but Aro refused to listen. It was obvious he wanted to get as much tactical advantage as he could when he asked for Edward Cullen to come forth to testify. It was a smart move, which allowed him to have instant access to the thoughts of all those present, save his wife Bella, who had always been immune to him.

As the young vampire made his way towards the Volturi, Artemis spotted his incensed wife. No doubt, the fact that her husband was unprotected unnerved her, and he also suspected someone in the guard had goaded her somehow. Probably Jane. The diminutive monster was quite predictable, really.

A part of Artemis’ mind continued to study Bella Cullen’s strange attitude–her confidence seemed to inexplicably grow as Edward approached Aro, which wasn’t very reassuring for Artemis. He had to remember the youngest Cullen was also an uncontrollable newborn, like him, but unlike him seemed quite determined to fight.

The greatest part of his mind, however, concentrated on the approaching Cullen. He was probably probing everybody’s mind, including Artemis’ own. It wasn’t really a plan that came to him, more like a desperate plea, but it still was worth a shot. There wasn’t much Aro could do right now, and by the time the battle was over, Artemis would probably be dead.

Spare the fairy, he thought as hard as he could, she’s innocent and good. She has nothing to do with this mess. Please don’t kill her.

Edward Cullen didn’t pause in his walk, but his eyes flickered briefly towards Artemis’ face, an air of incomprehension upon his face. Artemis looked at Holly, and back at the advancing vampire, and Edward’s eyes widened in wonder, before resuming his arrogant mask. He held out his hand to Aro.

Artemis hoped this would be the last Aro would get to hear his mind, even in a roundabout way–through Edward Cullen’s mind. It was obvious that the Volturi chief found it greatly amusing–though also a little irritating–that Artemis had started negotiating with the enemy.

Well, Aro also knew that Artemis was anything if not practical.

The examination lasted long, even by Aro’s standards. Once he was finished, Edward asked:

“You see?”

“Yes, I see, indeed,” Aro answered amusedly back. “I doubt wether any two among gods or mortals have ever seen so quite so clearly.”

The Volturi guard’s disbelief was evident. Artemis’ disbelief was quite different.

Gods? Oh, really, how megalomaniac does Aro have to be?

An instant later, the most surprising request of all was made by Aro: he wanted to see the immortal child. The debate between Aro and Caius was usual–Caius wanting to attack straight away and Aro cautioning him, and of course, Markus looking bored. Meanwhile, Artemis spotted Holly peering curiously towards the group assembled in front of her.

“What’s happening?” she whispered cautiously, looking up anxiously at Sulpicia. It was really marvelous how Artemis could still hear her when they were so far apart. It was doubtful, however, that she would make out his answered if he dared to speak to her. Felix’s grip had tightened as Aro made his way towards the Cullens, alone. Renata, of course, whimpered piteously, causing Edward to offer some members of the guard to accompany Aro.

His choice stunned everyone.

“Felix, Demetri … and Artemis.”

The guard made a remarkable effort to remain unmoved by the news, but Artemis knew most of them considered him more like a threat than a protection for Aro. Quickly, Felix ushered him to Aro’s side. Artemis kept his eyes from darting worriedly back at Holly, even further away from him now. This was not good. If something happened, he would never make it to her on time …

Edward’s wife called three of her camp with her–the big vampire Emmett, someone named Garrett, and to everyone’s horror, one of the wolves, apparently Jacob. Artemis fought a shiver of disgust as he smelled the approaching creature’s stench. Truly, couldn’t these things consider washing from time to time?

“Interesting company you keep,” Demetri murmured. Indeed, Artemis couldn’t help but agree. Edward’s eyes flashed towards him, and the wolf growled angrily. Then Edward let go of Aro, and Artemis’ mind went in overdrive.

Now or never.

The People were coming, and probably very fast. Retrieval couldn’t be far behind Holly, they would be here any minute now. Artemis had a hunch on how they would operate, and the device they would use would leave the vampires incapable of escaping. It was only a matter of time now.

Outside of his mind, other mind games were taking place, as Aro started interacting with the small creature in Bella Cullen’s arms. The baby girl seemed perfectly controlled, for some supposedly unmanageable immortal child–even by human children’s standards, she was remarkably mature. Caius’ infuriated hiss broke their thoughts, and Aro was forced to give the explanation he had withheld.

“Half mortal, half immortal. Conceived so, and carried by this newborn while she was still human.”

“Impossible!” was Caius’ only answer.

It wasn’t, however. Artemis’ eyes widened as he took in the miracle that was the small Renesmee. She had clear vampire traits, but some other were definitely human. If he examined her closely, he noticed how he could spot resemblances with both of her parents. Here eyes were brown, here cheeks were flushed, and most extraordinary of all, Artemis could make out her heartbeat.

It was mortifying he hadn’t spotted that earlier, really. Between the wolf pack’s heavy breathing and thumping hearts, Renesmee Cullen’s fast little heartbeat had gone completely unnoticed.

Then, the conversation with Edward Cullen’s family was over, and Aro waved at his brothers, urging them to come and join him. The Cullens retreated quickly as Caius and Marcus advanced.

Of course, Caius started ranting, while Marcus stayed passively by his brothers. They were arguing over technicalities: wether or not the child was really half-human, wether the wolves were werewolves or not. It all came down to one thing, really: wether or not the Volturi would find a valid reason to attack the Cullens. The Volturi had witnesses watching, and by their own will.

Artemis was barely relieved when Caius’ accusations died down. It didn’t last long.

“I want to talk to the informant,” he announced suddenly, looking at Irina.

Artemis looked back at his friend, the one vampire that had helped him in his path towards being a better person. She was looking at her sisters in anguish. Caius’ abrupt bark caught her attention, and her expression instantly turned to frightened. Slowly, she moved to join the group in front, and Caius started interrogating her.

He saw it coming before her, before everyone else.

“No!” he screamed, the fraction of a second before three of the Volturi guards leaped upon her, tore her to pieces and burned her with Caius’ lighter.

It took more than everything Artemis had for him to stay in place. The urge to rip Irina’s attackers was stronger even than the bloodlust that had forced him to kill Gianna the human. He couldn’t help his enraged snarl, while Felix caught his shoulder again in a vice-like grip. His mind was completely irrational, he didn’t know how he could ever control himself …

“Artemis!”

That was all it took. He shouldn’t have been surprised, really. His eyes darted to Holly Short’s horrified expression.

The Volturi brothers, however, didn’t seem overtly distressed by his rebellion. They were carefully observing the other side of the field, where the Delani sisters were fighting their friends to attack the Volturi. The guard was crouching, ready to attack as soon as one of the Cullen’s group stepped out of line.

The attack didn’t come. Caius’ trick to enrage Irina’s sister into attacking the guard, and provide the Volturi with a valid excuse to fight didn’t work, to his great fury. Artemis, his focus back now, discreetly looked down at his wristwatch. Any minute now …

Aro’s feeble excuse for Irina’s murder–that she had to answer to her false testimony, as the child had evidently not been immortal–would have made Artemis’ blood boil if he still had some flowing in his veins. Aro then started interrogating the Cullen’s witnesses, once more seeking for a way to start battle.

“And do you believe that she should be allowed to live?” he finally asked an egyptian vampire named Amun.

The Cullen’s ranks broke into furious hisses, as well as some of the witnesses behind the Volturi. Artemis barely restrained himself. He already was in a delicate position; it wasn’t wise to compromise it much more by openly expressing what he thought of Aro’s suggestion.

Artemis had to admit he admired Aro’s devious mind. Caius’ plans had been quite crude, to say the very least. Aro, on the other hand, had been calculating everything, planning this insidious way of condemning the Cullen family.

Was Renesmee safe to keep alive?

It was obvious that yes, but Aro kept insisting, as if he himself hadn’t created dangerous creatures in his time.

“Only the known is safe. Only the known is tolerable. The unknown is … a vulnerability.”

The hiss escaped Artemis’ lips before he could stop himself. Aro may have been condemning Renesmee there, but he was also attacking Holly in those few sentences. What were the People, other than an unknown quantity, to the vampires? It was obvious that sooner or later, no matter what Artemis might have done, someone would point out to the Volturi that the fairy captain’s existence–and that of her species–was a vulnerability. Aro had just made it impossible for anyone to deny that claim later on.

If Holly was condemned … He didn’t want to think about it, but he had. If Holly was condemned, then it wouldn’t matter if Artemis went against the Volturi. She probably wouldn’t criticize him for it, even if it meant putting her in danger.

Artemis glanced at his watch again, as the vampire Garrett came forth to deliver what would have been a rather touching speech about freedom and the lies of the Volturi if Artemis had been in the mood to appreciate it. He wasn’t, however. Why wasn’t Retrieval here? Surely, they wouldn’t let two people aware of their secrets in the hands of bloodthirsty vampires? Well, Ark Sool would have done it, but that was another matter altogether.

Following Garrett’s speech, a few of the Volturi witnesses left. Aro finally faced his guard to address them:

“We are outnumbered, dearest ones. We can expect no outside help. Should we leave this question undecided to save ourselves?”

Artemis felt Chelsea’s pull, stronger than he had ever experienced it. With all his might, he resisted the urge to answer as a puppet like the rest of the guard. Looking back at Holly, still firmly held by Sulpicia, he felt Chelsea’s influence slightly fading.

“Is the protection of our world worth perhaps the loss of some of our numbers?”

“Yes,” breathed the guard, and Felix nudged Artemis forcefully. “We are not afraid.”

Sheep, Artemis thought disdainfully.

The Volturi brothers huddled together to counsel. Again, Artemis looked at his watch. What were they doing? From where he was, he could hear Holly’s rapidly beating heart. He knew he couldn’t fight the Volturi alone. The People could do it, with the help of his knowledge. If Foaly had got and understood his message …

Artemis saw Chelsea concentrating on the group of vampires on the other side of the field, trying to break their bonds. She frowned in frustration. The Cullen’s group looked as tightly knit as ever. What was happening?

Then Jane started attacking. Edward Cullen leaped in front of his adoptive father to shield him, but none seem to react to the diminutive vampire’s power. And then, the Cullen’s newborn, Bella, grinned the smuggest smile he had ever witnessed, apart from what he imagined his own to be.

“She’s shielding them all!” he whispered in wonder, as Jane snarled in fury, startling even the guard. Two vampires on the Cullen’s side chuckled gleefully.

But Alec was already taking his sister’s place. Would Bella Cullen resist to that attack?

The answer wasn’t very long to come. Though before Artemis had his answered, he witnessed another prodigy from the amazing group: a huge fissure opened in the middle of the field, upsetting the Volturi brother’s council. As impressive as it was, the earthquake didn’t stop Alec.

Bella Cullen’s shield did. Artemis may had never seen Alec’s powers demonstrated on somebody other than himself, but the Cullen’s group certainly didn’t seem like they had lost their senses.

“Well done, Bella!” one of them cheered, and Bella, whose face had been apprehensive
before, started smiling again.

Aro intervened again:

“Before we vote, let me remind you: whatever the council’s decision, there need be no violence here.”

Edward snarled, and Artemis resisted the urge to roll his eyes. Yes, it was certain the Cullens would watch their child being slaughtered without batting an eyelash. Who was Aro trying to fool?

“Let us vote, then,” he concluded.

Artemis already knew who would choose what: Caius would want an attack, Marcus would want the easiest solution–in this case, abandoning–and Aro would want to find a way out of an obviously dangerous situation. It was quite apparent that Benjamin and especially Bella’s powers had shaken the Volturi. They weren’t quite so sure of winning now.

“Yes!” Edward Cullen hissed suddenly, an expression of triumph on his face. Next to Artemis, Felix and Demetri tensed.

“Aro?” Edward called, his tone even shaking Artemis’ confidence. Why was he so sure of himself? Did that mean everything would be over soon? The People weren’t here yet! Artemis couldn’t hear them yet, and checked his watch another time. Aro was too preoccupied to notice the movements of his newborn.

“Yes, Edward? You have something further …?”

“Perhaps,” Edward answered pleasantly. “First, if I could clarify one point?”

“Certainly,” Aro answered, and Artemis could see his interested under the mask. If this was a way out, he was certain Aro would go right with it.

“The danger you foresee from my daughter,” Edward continued, “this stems entirely from our inability to guess how she will develop? That is the crux of the matter?”

“Yes, friend Edward,” Aro agreed. “If we could but be positive … be sure that, as she grows, she will be able to stay concealed from the human world–not endanger the safety of our obscurity …”

“So, if we could only know for sure, exactly what she will become … then there would be no need for a council at all?”

“If there was some way to be absolutely sure,” Aro agreed, his voice shrill. Artemis smiled. He absolutely loved it to see Aro in a tight spot. It was clear the Volturi leader was uneasy–he was agreeing to something without knowing all the data about the situation. Edward could lead him where he wanted. Artemis just hope that it wouldn’t be detrimental for him and Holly. What was Retrieval doing?

The conversation was continuing, as Edward announced that his half-human, half-vampire child was not a unique case. Artemis almost groaned in frustration. How many other secret communities had he missed in his life?

It was then that Edward dealt his master card.

“Why don’t you join us, Alice?” he called out, to the surprise and shock of both groups. Even Aro couldn’t keep from repeating her name. That wasn’t particularly reassuring, seeing as she was the one he coveted the most.

Artemis heard the diminutive vampire running through the forest before he saw her. She wasn’t alone, however. Running with her was her husband, and two female vampires. Not far behind them came a male, with eyes that weren’t red, and whose heart could clearly be heard by all.

The Cullens had won, and Aro had just found his way out.

Another sound could be heard in the forest around them, but most of the vampires were too preoccupied by the newly arrived. The Cullen’s group rejoiced visibly, while the Volturi guards observed how they could walk past Bella’s shield without any trouble.

Artemis didn’t even need to look down on his watch anymore. His supernatural senses informed him that what he had been waiting for so desperately since the beginning of the meeting had finally arrived.

He couldn’t not hear the ticking of his watch anymore.

The People were here.
  Chapter 8

December 2011

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