Disclaimer: I do not own the 'Mediator' series or any of its characters.
This story takes place two years after 'Haunted' and 'Twilight' has never happened.
Chapter 1: The Beginning
It had been two years. Two long years after Paul Slater had left.
Actually, two and a half years, but who's counting?
The thought popped into my head the second I woke up this morning. Not the best way to begin the day but there it was. A memory I thought I had long ago buried in the back of my head.
He had left only a few days after the Winter Dance. I still couldn't believe it; Paul had… given up.
Actually, the first thing I couldn't believe was that I agreed to go with him to the dance.
Jesse couldn't either, but the president and vice president of the school had to go together, so I had no choice. Not that I had truly wanted any sort of presidency position in this school, but my friends were resilient and I was competitive.
So, he asked and I said yes. It isn't a crime, you know! Maybe it should have been. Anything about Paul should have been a damn crime. Lock him away, far away from me. Or me away from him, apparently.
But I definitely wasn't looking forward to it, I mean yes... Paul is a handsome guy. If we get down to brass tactics here, he was downright godly. But he was not, Jesse. Unfortunately for me, as much as I wanted to take Jesse as a date, I couldn't. It might look a bit strange if I was dancing with thin air...
That's the problem with being in love with a ghost. Alright, there were several problems with being in love with a ghost, but thinking of them made my heart ache in all the wrong ways.
It wasn't prom or anything that was supposed to matter right? So really it was one harmless dance? Wrong. Oh why did I have to go with Paul Slater? Because he is a good kisser. Quiet inner voice, we need none of that!
... ... I can remember it vividly play by play, the images stuck in my head; they do say that bad experiences are some of the easiest to remember. I was all dolled up, might as well have fun getting ready if the rest of the night will be a snooze fest. I was wearing a long, silvery silk gown. A sweetheart shaped neckline, strapless, with a back line that was low.
My hair was dark, shinning and up in a slightly messy bun, some of it fell loosely on my face.
I knew I was looking pretty good when I looked in the mirror, my dark brown hair making my green eyes pop, my dress fitting me snuggly.
I was doing up one of the straps on my shoes when I saw a mist behind me from in the mirror. I whirled around and was face to face with Jesse de Silva.
"You…" he said, "You look beautiful querida." He looked me up and down, truly meaning his words. I blushed, hey I couldn't help it okay? When a handsome man tells you that you are beautiful, you blush.
"Thanks Jesse. Um, so…" I said awkwardly. I just wanted to yell at him, 'SO, ARE WE GOING OUT?' But I don't think someone from the 1850's would really appreciate it, so I just refrained from screaming for the moment even if I was confused with our current relationship.
Jesse remained silent, looking into my eyes. Uh, that can stop now. I mean, I was also looking into his big, dark eyes but it was making it oh-so-much harder not to just kiss him.
But didn't he kiss me in the graveyard near our school, not long ago? But then we never even talked about it, as if it never happened. Paul had tried his best to come inbetween us, but we got past that. They even got into a physical fight (ruining our house, and Brad's party) over me. Not long afterwards, Jesse and I had gotten caught up in a passionate kiss.
Then, nothing. He backed off, seemingly embarassed by his actions. Weeks has passed and we had never talked about it. After the fight between them, Paul had backed off as well; from coming inbetween me and Jesse at least. I was thankful for that at least from him, even if Jesse was avoiding me anyways, so there wasn't much he could have come between.
We had continued our shifter lessons for a couple weeks after. Not from threats over Jesse (which was why I origionally signed up), but because I was genuinely curious about my powers, and he was the only teacher. God, I couldn't even think of these lessons now... they always ended with me racing out the door guiltily.
Paul had been patient and kind to me over the last couple of weeks, and with Jesse's avoidance depressing me... yes I had agreed to the dance with Paul.
I shook my head to break out of my thoughts. I looked up at Jesse, who was staring at me,
"Stop that!" I said taking a step back; we both somehow had ended up standing very close to each other.
"Stop what?" he asked in general confusion.
"Well, you… just… stop staring at me!" I blurted out, blushing madly.
"Well querida, I just wanted a look at you before you went out on your big date." He said chuckling lightly.
"Big date? Please Jesse, this is not a date." I said; my eyebrow raised high.
"SUSIE! YOUR DATE IS HERE!" My mom yelled from downstairs. Okay, WORST timing ever. Jesse gave me a look,
"See querida?" He sounded like a jealous boyfriend. I wish he was.
"Jesse…" I said sadly, "I would rather go with you a gazillion times more than with Paul. I really do…" I began but he cut me off,
"I know Susannah, it is okay." He said smiling lightly. "I just wish I could dance with you." He added.
"I'll save you a dance after, under the stars." I said with a smile on my face, at least it was something to look forward to.
He smiled back, another long silence followed by more thoughts from me about, well, us. When would we be together? Did he even want to be? Did it mean anything? Does he think of this as obsessively as I do?
"Querida, listen… about that time…" Jesse started and my heart flipped, was he finally going to talk about that graveyard kiss? Apparently not, seeing how he was cut off by none other then Paul.
"Breaking up an important moment?" He said with his trade mark smirk. He was leaning against the doorway in a black tux and skinny tie, and a dark blue dress shirt underneath. I had to admit, he was looking really good, especially with his deep tan and light hair. But his cold eyes gleamed as he looked me up and down.
"Slater." Jesse said in a growl. I blinked and was out of my trance of Paul's good looks and looked at Jesse, he was just as handsome of course, but he was wearing an unattractive scowl on his otherwise attractive face; and Paul was returning it with a glare. The tension in the room went WAY up.
"Uh." I said unintelligently, "Okay then…"
"You weren't coming downstairs so your mom said to go get you." Paul said smiling. I simply shrugged.
"You are looking so beautiful tonight." Paul said with a smile that sent shivers up my spine. "I can't wait to dance with you." Jesse took a step forward and said in a dangerously low voice,
"Do not harm Susannah in anyway way or else."
"Or else?" Paul said lazily. "Don't get your cowboy boots in a mess, she'll come back… unharmed." Paul said with a quick wink towards me. I could see Jesse clenching his fists so I quickly kissed him on the cheek and strode towards Paul.
"Just go!" I ushered him out the doorway and gave Jesse one last hopeless look before walking away. ... ...
I shook my head, no I would not remember that night. I closed my eyes and sighed quietly. It was too painful to remember these things… I opened my eyes letting in the California light. Summer had started and it was the middle of summer vacation. I was eighteen years old, graduated, and did not know what I was going to do with my life, let alone what college I was going to attend to.
I had sort of dismissed the whole thing, wanted to take a year off. I had tried hard not to think about it; even when my friends had all been excited to hear from their respective colleges, even when they were eager to shop for new dorm supplies, and even when I knew it meant saying goodbye, I had ignored it. It was all easier than the thought of saying goodbye to Jesse and moving on with my life. How far could he follow me? To college, to my jobs, as I end up marriage-less and kid-less?
Fuck, that was depressing. But I was restless, I knew that. I was the type of person that needed to keep moving. If I stayed too long in one spot and thought too much, it was all too heartbreaking to deal with. So keep moving. Now I was stuck. Everyone would leave with their lives come fall, and I would be left to stand in place. I'm an idiot.
I heard my mom calling from downstairs; maybe someone was here to see me? I quickly put on my favourite Stila lipgloss and took a quick glace in the mirror. My hair was darker now, almost black, and shiny. It was quite long and unruly but it looked amazing, I could admit. I had gotten tanner thanks to the California sun, at least in comparison to my New York days, and the cardio I was doing was paying off.
Sighing, I rushed down the stairs to find my mom in the kitchen. No company for me, what a waste of lipgloss. Andy was making lunch and it smelled delicious.
"Smells good Andy!" I said as I walked by and he smiled, concentrating on the task in front of him. He had done a good job as the role of my stepfather for the past couple years, I'm sure I wasn't the easiest to take care of. My mother handed me a single letter,
"University acceptance?" she asked in a hopeful tone. I rolled my eyes, yeah right, I applied for only a few loser schools, all of which I didn't care about. I just didn't know what I wanted to do and I couldn't just leave, not this place, not yet. I opened the envelope addressed to a 'Miss Susannah Simon', to find a surprising letter.
Dear Miss Simon,
We understand to our furthest knowledge that you are a mediator.
We are an organization; MED. We request to have you become a member of our group, which would include a few other mediators from the area. You will be paid for your duties and get to aid many people in the process. We hope to get the organization fully up and running by the end of the summer. We are sorry for such a short time period and hope this isn't too much of an inconvenience. If you wish to obtain further information on MED, you can contact us at our first meeting at the Junipero Serra High School Church on July 31st. We hope to see you there,
I sort of just stared at the letter for a few seconds, I mean hello? MED? What the…
"Susie?" Mom said, trying to get a look at the letter.
"Uh, oh, it's nothing Mom! Just same lame junk mail saying I won a house!" I laughed lamely, she looked disappointed.
"Lunch!" Andy yelled and I snapped back to attention, I had zoned out again looking at the letter. Soon we were all eating; David was talking to Mom and Andy loudly about how the sun is increasingly becoming stronger this summer due to global warming or something, and we should be wearing SPF 60. I looked over at him; he really hadn't changed now that he was in grade 9, but I liked him like this. He was dependable and comfortable with who he was, and that's what I liked. Not change. Andy gave a cough then spoke up to Brad and me,
"Get accepted into anything yet Brad? I know it's late, now that's it's mid summer, but maybe something got lost in the mail…" he said looking at Dopey sternly. Dopey just kind of sat there and swallowed his food,
"Uh, no. I think I'm going to stick with 'the plan' and take this year off then go off to college." He said and Andy's face fell. Opsie, WRONG answer. Andy wouldn't really bug me about the whole 'going off the college' thing. He knew I was a fairly good student and he seemed to trust I would find my way. It was Mom's job to bug me about it, and she did often, but he did not approve of Dopey's decision one bit,
"Brad I will not let you laze around at home for the next year, party every night and hang with your surfer buddies! You won't get anywhere in life that way!" Andy said.
"Dad I'm eighteen… I still have a lot of life left. Practically everyone is staying back a year to chill out. Then we will all be gone and you will be ever-so happy, okay?"
"Not okay, I'm not going to let you 'chill out'!" Andy growled, "Jake is off on his second year at University without a problem and he didn't stay back a year."
"Big whoop." Dopey said rolling his eyes. Nope, Dopey had not changed one bit since I've known him. He still made Debbie and Kelly flirt and giggle with him (ugh) but he was still the smartass he always was. I could see Andy getting mad so I quietly excused myself, thanking him for the meal, and raced upstairs. I flopped on my bed and sighed, re-reading the letter again. A shimmer appeared and Jesse was now reading it over my shoulder.
"Wow. That is amazing Susannah." Jesse said. "What an opportunity." I rolled my eyes in playfulness and sat up.
"Do you think I should go to the meeting?" I asked.
"Of course querida, it really is a good opportunity to meet fellow mediators like yourself."
"Shifter." I said quietly thinking… then shook my head. Jesse grabbed my hand and it still made my stomach do flip flops.
"Susannah, you have nothing to do this year. Why not try this out?" he said. I looked into his eyes, those amazing eyes. I trusted him; of course I did… if I didn't we never would have… never you mind. I punched him playfully in the arm,
"But you have to come with me okay?"
"Duh!" he said trying to mock my century's lingo. I gave him a horrified face and we both broke out laughing. He smiled and I felt a lot better about the whole thing, it was good to have your best friend at your side.
Ceecee had already left for Harvard, she had to leave early to visit family living in that area for a couple weeks before school. We had a very emotional goodbye and promised to call each other at least once a week which had been working out great so far.
Adam had gotten into a college near by to Ceecee, seeing as how they were inseparable, the two lovebirds. Love… it was crazy to think that Jesse and I had been the lovebirds, now we were just friends… I thought about the night it happened,
… ... "Querida, maybe it is best that we are just friends?"
"WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT?" I yelled in frustration. "You don't know what you're saying!" But he just gave a very weak attempt at a smile, his eyebrows up in confusion.
"I'm not alive." He said.
"So?" I snapped.
"Susannah it is best that you moved on." My heart was ripped in half. I just stared at him blankly. "Susannah…" he said gently touching my arm. I moved away from him violently and looked up at him my eyes brimming with tears,
"You… can't do this!" I yelled in anger. "How can you say this?" He clearly looked pained,
"You think I want to do this? No! But I have to do this. Please you need to understand." Jesse said his own eyes looking as if tears would swamp them.
I just looked at him, finally noticing the tears running down my face. I could truly not understand. We were so happy together, two people so perfectly made for eachother. He was dead, yes, but this was making me feel so much worse than dead inside.
I had had my doubts sometimes, sure, but I would have never done this.
How could he say this after everything we had been through? It took us so much to be together and now he was throwing it away? Like it was so easy to throw away!
I didn't care about the future, I didn't care about anything but us. Why did he need to care about it? Why was he trying to manage a well adjusted life for me when he was really just ruining the one thing I wanted in my life.
"No… no, No, NO!" I yelled hoarsely. I turned away from him and sobbed and he gently rubbed my back. I turned into him and cried on his chest for a very long time… …
Nope! I would NOT go back to thinking of these memories. No way. Not now anyways, everything was fine, months had past since then and now best friends was good enough. I hugged him quickly and smiled,
"I wonder what MED stands for…"
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