sam uley | imprinting 
sam uley. 1621 words.
Sure enough, Sam had kept his word. In the morning, your car was parked in the driveway, though there was no sign of your saviour anywhere. He’d looked oddly irritated around you, like being in the car with you was unbearably difficult, even though he’d been the one to offer to drive you home in the first place. You didn’t understand what had happened; had he figured out that you were crushing on him and he’d decided to let you down in the gentlest way possible? Though, really, if that was the case, his way wasn’t exactly very gentle.
You quickly slipped into a numb routine – going to school, coming home, doing homework, eating dinner, going to bed. But your heart and mind were painfully fixated on Sam Uley, and it became harder and harder for you to concentrate on anything else but him. You couldn’t shake off the feeling that something was wrong, and that maybe you were the reason why he’d been so cold in the car. His car – it’d had a musky, earthy scent that yours now seemed to carry, though faintly. It only tortured you more that you were so close to him and yet so far.
After a particularly devastating day at school – your English teacher had surprised the class with a test on which you’d left the entire back page blank – you wanted nothing more than to crawl under your sheets and drown your thoughts out with music. It was, therefore, very unexpected to find Sam Uley sitting on the front steps of your porch, waiting for you.
“Sam? You okay?” you asked, getting out of your car. Sam looked exhausted, with hollow cheeks and irritated eyes. Your stomach twisted violently at the thought.
“(Y/N), I need to talk to you,” he said. “Walk with me.”
You obeyed, not giving it a thought. He walked slower than usual so that you could keep up. For a while, neither of you said anything, the tension around you being so tense it was almost palpable. You could kind of picture what he was going to say – I know you like me, (Y/N), but I’m with Leah and nothing could ever happen between you and me.
It surprised you when that was not what he said.
“I broke up with Leah,” he told you.
It was like someone had taken a shovel and smacked you in the head with it. You stumbled over your own two feet in shock and then stopped walking altogether.
Sam shook his head, like he was scolding himself. “I had no choice.” His voice was thick and measured – almost too controlled, like he was struggling to keep it steady.
“What do you mean you had no choice? Did something happen?”
He gave you an expectant look. “(Y/N)… what do you know about the Quileute legends?”
The sudden change in topic made your forehead crease. You shrugged lightly. “Not much. Just what I heard around from the kids on the res.”
“Like how we’re descended from wolves?”
There was a heavy pause. You shrugged again. “I guess. But they’re just stories, though.” Another pause. “Right?”
Sam looked deeply in your eyes again, like he was searching them for something even he couldn’t identify. His gaze was so fierce, so strong that it made the hair on your arms rise. It was intimate, very intimate, and you wondered whether that was how he’d looked at Leah.
He started walking again, and with slightly more hesitation this time, you followed.
It felt an awful lot like a cruel joke, and yet the terrifying part was that it wasn’t. There was nothing funny about it. It was like the beginning of a nightmare, one you knew you could never wake up from.
Sam Uley was a werewolf.
And not the Hollywood version, either. No full moons or silver bullets; instead, he shook out of his human shell at will and turned into a bear-sized wolf with fur black as night. When he’d changed in front of you, you could’ve sworn your heart had actually stopped for a good moment.
Even hours later after you were safely tucked away in bed, you still couldn’t wrap your head around it. He’d explained the truth behind the Quileute legends – the truth that had been staring you in the face all along – and you wanted to accept it so badly. But how could you when all your life, you’d been taught that his very existence was only a myth?
And then there’d been the whole imprinting thing. If the wolf part was crazy, the idea that you were his soulmate was even more so. You’d known him for longer than you could remember and he’d never once showed any interest in you. Leah had been the object of his affection – only Leah and no one else.
“I didn’t know you were the one,” he explained. “I didn’t know until I saw you for the first time after I shifted.”
You shook your head. “But Leah—”
“It’s killing me that I have to do this to her,” Sam whispered, voice breaking. “But you’re it, (Y/N). You were made for me.”
It had been so hard to see him so vulnerable and open, especially when he was finally giving you what you wanted. You’d always dreamed of him kissing you instead of Leah, of him being yours instead of hers. But now that you were actually faced with the possibility of a future with Sam, it scared you.
You’d told him that you needed some time to think it over. He told you to take all the time in the world, though you could tell it had pained him greatly to say that. And it pained you, too. Being apart from him when you really didn’t have to seemed to tear you apart on the inside.
Maybe he was right and the two of you were meant to be together. You’d felt it since the first moment you’d ever laid your eyes on him, and even if it had taken him years to realize it, it was better late than never. Still, there was a problem.
You didn’t know her well enough, but you knew very well what it felt like to have the person you love fall hard for someone else. You may have been Sam’s soulmate but he knew Leah better than he knew you and they had history. You couldn’t erase years of love with just one glance at someone else, imprint or no imprint.
Sam was waiting on your porch again when you came home from school. He obviously thought he’d given you enough time, and it really had been generous. A week to mull it over — surely, it had to have hurt him to see you be so indecisive.
You took in a deep breath and got out of the car. Already, a knot was forming in your throat. Sam opened his mouth to speak, but you were quicker.
“Listen before you say anything, okay?” He nodded and you exhaled shakily. “Sam, believe it or not, I’ve been in love with you since the second I met you. Before you were a” — you winced — “wolf. And it felt like I’d been kicked a thousand times in the gut when I found out you and Leah were dating.”
He didn’t say anything, but the guilt on his face was very visible.
You ran a frustrated hand through your hair. “Sam — this is such bullshit. There is no love at first sight. It’s stupid. And you’re willing to walk all over Leah — the girl who gave you every part of herself and more — so that you could conform to some insane Quileute legend.”
Sam shook his head gravely. “You still don’t understand, do you? Imprinting isn’t a choice.”
“No, but acting on it is.” Your eyes stung. “I’ve wished for a long time that one day you would realize that you’re really in love with me, and that you’d break up with Leah over it. But now that it did, I can’t help but feel guilty. It’s always going to be there at the back of my mind, nagging. The idea that I stole someone’s boyfriend.”
“You didn’t steal anything.” Sam gritted his teeth. “I want to be with who I’m supposed to be with. You still don’t get it, (Y/N). Imprinting on you has made me so much more aware of everything — of how you used to always come down to the beach and hang around with people you didn’t even know just so you could be near me; or how your cheeks always flushed pink whenever I talked to you; or how you’d sometimes walk for miles around La Push just so you could run into me.”
Hearing him say that out loud made you grimace. “It sounds pathetic on my part, doesn’t it?” you sighed.
“No, it doesn’t. You were in love. And now I’m telling you that I feel something for you. That all those things made a difference.” Sam’s tone was pleading. “Please, (Y/N).”
If he’d said anything more, you swore you would have started crying. The look on his face tugged at your heartstrings and played them like a harp. Nothing had ever felt more right than the idea of being with Sam Uley, so why had you fought it so much?
You took Sam’s hand in yours. He pressed it to his lips, and pulled you firmly against his chest. He warmed you down to your bones with the insane temperature of his skin; it was a pleasant heat that spread through your body and took away any doubts you had.
This was where you belonged.