Author's Note:

When I saw "Bridge to Terabithia" I got very emotional. I knew I didn't know these characters as real people, but I felt a deep sense of loss. That's why I have created this fanficiton. Basically, Jess has been living in a fantasy the past 4 months, read this to discover how he finds his reality. The Way Bridge to Terabitha should have ended

Please review, and thanks for reading!

Oracle


Also, this is not a one-shot. There will be more chapters coming soon.
Chapter 1: I forgot something

It was a clear, but late morning, right after a rain shower. The Earth was clean, the sun was shining, and Jess Aarons was relaxing on his bed in his room, scratching his colored pencils on a very special drawing in his notebook.

It wasn't just any drawing. It was his masterpiece. A picture of a very special girl he knew. He dropped the pencil, proud how it turned out, and now finished. He looked at it admiringly.

"Jess! Jess!" May Belle yelled. Her tiny feet made a screechy sound on the wooden, dry floor as she ran into the bedroom that she and Jess currently shared. She made an even squeakier stop in front of her Jess's bed. He was startled, and quickly shut his notebook, hiding the drawing. No WAY did he want his kid sister to ask him what who it was. But, she was bound to find out someday. She was always snooping in his stuff.

It was now that he noticed that she was holding the phone in her little hand.

"I called you THREE times!" With a sly smile, and a girly giggle, she held out the phone to him. "It's your giiiiirlfriiiiend!"

Only one person came to his mind when she said that: Leslie. Leslie Burke. She is the girl next door – his best friend. She is unique, and ever since he laid eyes on her, he knew she was different than all the other girls. She was sweet, had spirit, and was filled with so much life. Unlike Jess' sisters, the only females he knew well, who were always fighting and screaming at each other, Leslie had a spark in her that he adored. But most of all, she accepted him for who he was.

Which was why he was so confused. He liked Leslie, a lot in fact, as a friend, but he kept wondering if he liked her more than that, and if she liked him that way too. It was something he was still trying to figure out.

Jess snatched the phone away from May Belle. "She's not my girlfriend!" He tried to look offended, but couldn't help wondering if she would be someday…

He shook off that feeling. Of course not! How could he be so stupid?

May Belle didn't seem to be moving from the spot she was standing at, obviously curious about the call. He shooed her away with his hand, clearly asking for privacy. May Belle let out a "that's not fair!" huff, and marched away with her arms crossed.

As soon as he heard her leave, he began to talk on the phone, trying to act casual.

"Hey."

"Jess?" The voice sounded familiar to him, but it wasn't Leslie. "Uhh…."

"Hi, Its Miss Edmunds, from school!"

He froze. His heart started pounding. Miss Edmunds? Miss Edmunds is calling me? She was by far, the prettiest, most fun teacher in the whole school…and Jess had a major crush on her.

"Um…hi."

"I was wondering…are you busy today? I thought you might like to go with me to Washington…the art museum?"

Jess' once frozen heart began to pound like crazy! He had never been to a museum before…let ALONE with the most beautiful person he'd ever SEEN.

"Uh…I have to ask my mom."

"Ok." She sounded so chipper on the other end of the line. Jess gently set down the phone, tip-toeing down the hall to his parent's room, but he couldn't help leaping for joy!

Jess peeked in. His mother was still in bed, a sleepy lump under the covers. "Mom?" he whispered.

"mmmmmm…." She was still half asleep.

"Miss Edmund's invited me to go with the art museum with her in Washington…is that ok?"

"Wassshington?" Her syllables were blurred as she turned over, lying comfortably with her back to Jess. "Yeah…I'll be back later."

"mmhmm." Jess hurried quickly back to his room, picking up the phone with hast.

"Miss Edmunds? I can go."

Ten minutes later, Jess was dressed: in his best casual clothes, and waiting for Miss Edmund's car to come up the road. He paced nervously. What should I say…I get so tongue-tied when I talk to her!

He didn't come up with a plan, for at that moment; Miss Edmunds' car whirred around the corner, and parked right in front of Jess. He opened the passenger door, trying not to seem so anxious, and buckled his seatbelt. "Thanks again for letting me come, Miss Edmunds."

She smiled, making his heart melt. "You're welcome."

The car once again started up, and they were both silent as they pulled away. Feeling awkward, Jess looked out the window, watching Leslie's house as they drove away. I can't wait to tell Leslie about this! He beamed to himself. He suddenly felt a longing for Leslie to be in the backseat with them, laughing and chatting away. No! I won't think about her…I'm in a car with Miss Edmunds, and all I can think about is Leslie!

Miss Edmunds must have noticed him looking out the window. "Did you forget something?" she asked gently. Jess thought about this. I don't want Leslie to ruin this moment.

"No." he said quickly.

"Oh…ok."

The next 5 minutes was followed by dead silence. Why am I not talking? I must look so stupid! And yet, Jess couldn't find himself to say anything. Here he was, in the car with the most gorgeous crush he'd ever had…and he had a zipper for a mouth!

As they went past all the corn fields and endless road, Jess was beginning to get bored. It'll be worth it in the end. he reminded himself. So he kept gazing out the window. Before long, he saw 2 runners, sweaty and hot, on the side of the road. He watched them in the rear-view mirror until they were gone.

"Great day for a run, huh?" said Miss Edmunds, attempting at conversation.

"Uh-huh."

Jess bit his lip, thinking back to the race at school…

!-!

All the boys lined up for the race on the football field. On one side of Jess was his worst tormenter, Gary Fulcher, and on the other side f him, Gary's friend, who was also a bully. "I'm going to win this, Aarons, so don't even try!" Gary sneered at him. His other friend joined the laughter. Jess just shook his head and tried to ignore them. He started to stretch his legs.

Just then, someone else walked up to the starting line, crouching down in a starting position. Jess looked over to see that it was that new blonde girl from his class.

Gary also saw. He stood upright, staring at her with disgust. "Um, this race is for boys ?"

Jess looked up at him slyly. "What's the matter, Gary? Afraid a girl's gonna beat you?"

Gary narrowed his eyes at both of them, but got down to his starting position again.

Jess looked over at the girl. She was smiling at him. Embarrassed, he looked away.

The gym teacher blew his whistle.

"ON YOUR MARK…GET SET…GO!!"

Off they bolted. At first, Gary and Jess were at the same pace, but Jess soon got ahead. Before long he could see the finish line. He heard May Belle from the sidelines. "Whoo Go Jess!" He smiled at the victory that was soon his. He would be named the fastest kid in school!

He felt the presence of someone at his side. He looked over. It was that blonde girl, and suddenly she was ahead of him! With all his might, he tried to catch up to her, but the girl was too quick for him. Soon, the finish line was past him. The blonde girl had won.

Jess breathed heavy, sitting down in the grass, defeated and pride-struck.

"Jess! Jess!" May Belle came up to him, sitting down next to him. "Did'gyawin?"

So out of breath that he couldn't speak, Jess shook his head. May Belle looked disappointed.

Suddenly, the blonde girl came up to him, kneeling down, and offering her hand to help him up. "Hey" She said. "It's Jess, right?"

Jess only stared at her. He got up on his own and walked away, leaving Leslie still on the ground.

!-!

Jess snapped his head back in gear. I gotta stop thinking about her. He looked around the car, and stopped cold at what he saw on her windshield.

Miss Edmunds noticed this. "Oh, you like that? I got that white bobble-head dog at the fair last year. Cute, isn't he?"

"Yeah." said Jess. P.T.…

!-!

"Jess? Where are you?" Jess turned around, a smile on his face. He was in Terabithia, and Leslie had just crossed over on the rope. He held the dog close to him, scratching it's ears. Jess heard running, and soon, Leslie was right across from him. "What's that?" she said, filled with wonder. "Our troll hunter." Jess let the dog down, and the curious puppy sniffed at Leslie's feet. "Where did you get him?"

"Free puppy bin at a bus stop." He smiled again. "What should we call him?" He asked her. "Prince Terrien." Then she giggled. "P.T. for short."

Jess shuffled his feet around nervously. "I…got him for you."

There was no mistaking the delight in her eyes. "Oh thanks, Jess!"

What happened next was something Jess wasn't expecting. Leslie came up to him and hugged him. At first he felt embarrassed, but then, he savored this moment. It was the first time he'd hugged a girl that wasn't related to him. It was the first time he felt this way…

All too soon, she let go, and Jess dropped the feeling he felt in his heart, got on his sweatshirt, and went to the tree house with Leslie on the side of him. But he couldn't help the urge of wanting to hold her close to him again…

!-!

Jess looked over at Miss Edwards. Man, was she pretty.

!-!

"Ok, everyone! Grab and instrument!" Miss Edwards clapped her hands, and all the students rushed up to the front of the room, digging through the instrument box and shoving each other to get the best one. All the students were up there.

Except Jess.

His eyes were fixated on Miss Edwards, a stare that couldn't be broken. Leslie, with her instrument, a tambourine, shook it at him as she went past. She leaned down, and whispered in his ear. "Take a picture. It'll last longer."

He looked up at her, still with the expression he wore looking at Miss Edwards, but now he was staring at Leslie. She smiled, and went past him to her desk. The entire class started singing a song, smiling and using their instruments. Jess was the only one just sitting.

!-!

Jess was starting to get frustrated. Every time I try to think about Miss Edmunds, I think about Leslie instead! He sighed.

"…gee, that rainfall this morning sure was a downpour, wasn't it?"

"Yes…" answered Jess.

!-!

Jess looked up. He could have sworn he felt a raindrop. "Did you feel…?" He asked Leslie, who was sitting next to him in the tree house. Just as he said that, a small raindrop plopped on Leslie's cheek. She looked up too. "Maybe we should head back." she said.

"Yeah." Suddenly, an enormous BOOM! of thunder was heard, sending them both running out of the tree house and to the creek. Once they ran there, Jess yelled to her above the noise, "I'll go first!" she nodded. As he swung over the creek, shoe tips were soaked by the water. Jess thought.

He had only gone a few steps when he felt her grab his hand again. "I can barely see a thing." she said. "Can you lead?"

With a smiled, Jess nodded.

!-!

Jess had to smile at that memory. It almost made him wish she was here.

"Hey Jess, look at this Bridge!" said Miss Edmunds. "It's cool, isn't it?" she asked.

Jess looked out the window, as they went over a smooth, wooden bridge. Underneath was a flowing, roaring creek. "Yeah." said Jess. Just like Terabithia

!-!

"Look how long the creek goes on!" said Leslie, looking down to the rapids. Today, Jess and Leslie were scoping out their Kingdom, trying to memorize every detail. "Want to follow it?" Leslie asked anxiously, looking at Jess with pleading eyes. He looked on. It looked steep and questionable. "I dunno, Leslie…"

"Aw, come on! Where's your sense of adventure?" He looked away from her.

"Keep your mind wide open." She reminded him. "All right, all right."

They followed downstream for about 10 minutes, walking. At first, the stream was course, and rough, sharp rocks all over and hard to fight the current. But later, it melted into a calm, shallow pool. "Cool! I didn't know that the stream was like this…" said Jess, wading into the ankle-deep water. It seemed so clear…and smooth.

Leslie waded in too, and standing right next to Jess, she closed her eyes. "Um, what are you doing?" asked Jess. "Close your eyes and see!"

Jess did so, but nothing happened. "Leslie—"

"Shh! Listen!"

Again, Jess listened.

"Do you hear it?"

"Hear what?"

"The peace…the quietness."

Jess listened again but heard nothing. "I still don't hear it, Leslie."

She opened her eyes and looked at him. "Listen with your heart."

He closed his eyes again. He heard it. The whistle of the wind.The sway of the trees.

The quietness.

"Wow." He whispered to Leslie. "That's so cool."

!-!

Jess looked down at his seatbelt, wanting more that ever for Leslie to be here with him.

I should have asked her to come—

Miss Edmunds piped up again. "So…this is the first time at a museum, huh?"

He nodded, closing his eyes. I wonder if Leslie's ever been to an art museum before…

!-!

"Hey Jess, you're really good at art." Leslie flipped through his notebook, studying all the drawings. "Thanks." She handed him the book again, and he took it as they boarded the bus. Leslie sat behind him. "Um, it was your birthday the other day, right?"

"Yes."

"Happy birthday!" Leslie reached under the seat, and grabbed something. "Here's your present."

She handed t to him. It looked like a wooden briefcase, but when he opened it, it was the most coolest paint set he'd ever seen.

Leslie looked on over his shoulder. "I hope you like it."

Jess was speechless. "Isn't this…expensive?"

"Well, I could exchange it for a cheaper one." Leslie offered. "nono, that's ok."

Jess turned back to look at her in the eye. They were only inches apart. "Thanks." The next few seconds, they only smiled at each other.

"Leslie and Jess!Sitting in a tree!" May Belle started chanting form the seat across from Leslie.

"K-I-S-S—"

but the rest was muffed when Leslie put her hand over May Belle's mouth. Jess and Leslie only looked at each other and laughed.

!-!

"This Washington traffic is terrible!! I don't think I have ever sat this long… "

"Huh?"

Up ahead, Jess could see the art museum, the parking lot nearly full. Miss Edmunds tried to find a spot to park.

He beamed at the thought of the art museum…and realized that

Leslie wouldn't be here to enjoy it with him.

Jess sighed. He looked over at her. He had been blinded by her beauty; he never really knew her inside. What her heart was like, her personalities, anything. Was her beauty only skin-deep?

Probably.

He shook his head in disgust at himself. How could he have liked her? Not only was she like, ten years older than him, but he realized he didn't know her at all. He couldn't talk to her as easily as he could talk to Leslie.

Leslie. Leslie Burke. His…best friend? She had stuck by him all this time, she talked to him, she had fun with him, she appreciated him, and that's why…

That's when it hit him. Now, he realized it. He knew. He knew! This entire year, he had fantasized about Miss Edmunds. And just a second ago, he lost it, and now had found it. Now, he knew that his heart pointed to, belonged to, and lead to—

"STOP THE CAR!" Jess yelled, so loud, that it startled Miss Edmunds.

"What? What is it?"

"I forgot something!" he looked frantic.

"What?? What did you forget??"

He looked Miss Edmunds straight in the eye, not with so-called love as he had before.

"We need to go back."

"Why? We're nearly here! The entrance is right—"

"Please? I, I just need to...go back."

Miss Edmunds sighed. But she turned the car around, sped off out of Washington, and back home.

Jess didn't say anything, at first, but after a few minutes on the road,

"Um, can you go a little faster?"

Jess could have sworn that he saw Miss Edmunds roll her eyes, but she did as Jess said.

He smiled.

He couldn't wait.

Please review! If I get enough, I'll add the next chapter!

Oracle