Alice's eyes met Jasper's, and she was taken back by the sincerity, the desperation that shone through them.
"You know I would do everything to help you, anytime, Jasper..", she murmered, voice coated with concern. Jasper must have been sensing how nervous she was, yet he continued to act in ways that certainly wouldn't help. Alice knew Jasper wouldn't intentionally hurt her. That meant whatever he had been hiding from her, from the family, was serious, inevitable.
Though, instead of calming at her words, his hands only tensed more around hers, and she narrowed her eyes down at him in confusion. How could her promise possibly make things worse? Then again, Jasper was not himself lately. She couldn't bring herself to really doubt it.
Jasper watched her silently for a few moments, before sighing an unnecessary breath, looking down at their hands. He closed his eyes, and Alice squeezed his hands lightly.
"Jasper..", she frowned, about to tell him how worried he was making her, but she knew he would already be able to tell. She opened her mouth to start over.
"Listen to me, Jasper. Whatever it is, I need you to tell me. No matter how dangerous, no matter how dark.. I need to know. I can't help you unless I know what's going on. And it's not as if I can find out myself..", her voice trailed off, clearly frustrated as she thought about the recent unclarity of her visions.
Jasper slowly shook his head, bringing one of her hands to his lips, kissing the pale skin softly.
"That isn't your fault, Alice. I feel terrible about keeping something like this from you, not being able to let you in.."
As Jasper's voice turned to resemble self-disgust, Alice leaned forward, kissing him on the cheek.
"You know me inside and out, Jasper. Tell me what's going on."
Jasper opened his mouth to speak, thought better of it, and closed his mouth once more. Alice waited patiently, though she grew more worried with each passing moment.
"I will tell you soon, Alice. I promise. Listen though, I think I should get out of this room. Go hunting, maybe. You should head back home, and I'll be there in no time", Jasper smiled softly as he spoke, but Alice's face remained composed, seriousness and anxiety coating her features.
Alice couldn't speak, didn't trust herself. She couldn't risk saying anything that could possibly cause whatever Jasper was going through to grow worse. There was someone she did have to talk to though. Someone who all of the Cullens went to for answers, for clarity, for reason and help. Carlisle. Suddenly, Jasper's mention of her heading back home seemed like the best thing he'd said in a while. If she couldn't help Jasper, Carlisle may be able to.
As Jasper stood, Alice nodded, doing the same. She watched as he made his way to the door, following him down the hall by his side, before they were in front of the short squared building. Jasper smiled softly again, taking both of her hands in his, leaning forward to kiss her tenderly on the cheek.
"I'll see you soon", he told her, though it sounded like more of a promise, what Alice guessed what because of the nervous haze he sensed around her.
"Of course", Alice replied, smiling.
Jasper's eyes narrowed down at her slightly, features anxious before relaxing into a soft set again. Silently, he turned, and began walking at a human-pace towards the heavily-tree'd highway that led to a trail, that also led to the mountains. Alice's small frame stood, watching him until he was out of sight, which was by the time he was half-way through the trail, thanks to her defined vision.
Alice did the same, walking at a human-pace, but in the opposite direction. It didn't take her long to get to the hotel's small, vacant parking lot. She made her way to the bright yellow Porsche, and got in, leaving the seatbelt dangling beside the window.
As she drove, she thought of what to say to Carlisle. What he needed to hear.
He was her only hope.
It wasn't long before Alice was parked in front of the large, white house. Approaching the house, she once again considered what she would say, how they could handle this. Was she overreacting? What if -- No. She wasn't. Alice knew Jasper, knew him more than she knew herself. He wasn't the type to keep things from her, no matter how bad or disappointing they might be.
Walking through the front doors, she thought of heading to the living room. It was where the Cullens usually were. Then again though, most of the Cullens were out. She decided to try Carlisle's office upstairs. In less than a second, she was in the doorframe, waiting patiently. Carlisle looked up almost immediately.
"Alice", he smiled, standing. After a few moments of observing her expression, he spoke again, walking over to her. "Is Jasper here?", he asked, voice careful, wary.
Yes, Carlisle was careful. And Alice was sneaky. Alice had told Jasper that she had wanted to go to the hotel for a small vacation, like the other couples had done, but seeing as it was.. well, a hotel, and how tense her emotions had been running, he must've known something was up. She was thankful he hadn't pressed on the subject. When she shook her head, Carlisle slowly nodded.
"How did it go?", he asked, voice full of genuine concern.
Alice's wide eyes closed for a moment, slowly shaking her head. She answered honestly.
"Horrible. I need to talk to you, you and Esme", she sighed. A second later, she followed Carlisle's gesture as he began walking down the hall.
They walked to the large room, a white room with nothing but a long table and chairs in silence. It was the 'meeting' room of the house, you could say. Even though it would only be Carlisle, Esme, and herself discussing the issue, it was still routine. Natural. Alice went and took a seat, while Carlisle stopped where the two walls left a space, an entrance to the area. He didn't have to speak. Alice's eyes moved to rest on her hands, folded on the table.
Moments later, Carlisle returned to the room, but this time with Esme. Her face was full of motherly worry, anxiousness. As she followed Carlisle to the two chairs at the head of the table near Alice, she gently touched her shoulder. Once they were seated, Carlisle took Esme's hand before speaking.
"Okay, Alice. Tell me everything that happened during your stay at the hotel", he requested, voice thoughtful, distant as if already thinking of possibilities for the reason behind Jasper's behavior.
"Well", she began, keeping her eyes on her hands. The whole concept of the situation had hardly registered in her brain yet. "Nothing, to be honest. I'd tried talking to him, convincing him that whatever was causing him trouble, he could tell me. That I was there to help him, whatever it was, no matter how bad it might be. Each time I asked, he seemed more.. pained, regretful about it. As if the pain I might feel after he tells me would be worse than the pain I feel now, not being able to help him.. see anything.." Her voice trailed off, and Esme reached forward to take her hand.
"He eventually told me he would tell me in time, and then he left. He said he was going hunting. Up in the mountains, from where I saw him heading. This isn't going to pass on it's own though, Carlisle. This is something serious. He would tell me if it was anything but absolutely horrible", Alice finished, having been able to feel Carlisle's eyes on her face the entire time. When she looked up again, his face was serious, full of authority.
"Alice..", he murmered after a few moments, as if still considering what he was going to say. When he continued, his voice was certain.
"This isn't your fault. It's not up to us. Whatever Jasper is going through, well, this is something that he's going to have to tell us. He knows how much you love him. He said he would tell you soon enough, and never, would he ever, no matter the circumstances, lie to you of all people. I think though, that we will all have to talk to him in order for him to open up if he won't open up to you alone. We need to express our concerns. He is our family. If I know anything about Jasper, it is that he loves you more than anything in this world. He cares about his family."
Alice nodded slowly, watching him intently as she took in everything he was saying. Nothing was more important, at that moment.
Carlisle's eyes fixated on the wall for a moment, before looking to Esme, then to Alice again.
"When he comes back, we will talk to him. He's going to tell us what's wrong. I know you're definitely not going to give up on this, and neither am I, or Esme. We're not giving up until he tells us everything", he finished.
The three of them sat in silence for what seemed like a long time, each going over the plan, their thoughts about the situation.
Suddenly, Esme's voice broke the silence.
"Jasper", she said.
Alice looked from the table up to her face, about to question her, but she noticed her eyes fixed in the direction of where the walls ended, the opening to the room.
She stood immediately, taking her place before the pale, beautiful figure.
"What's the occasion?", Jasper murmered, eyes burning into Alice's for a moment before taking a swift glance from Alice, to Esme, to Carlisle, back to Esme, and finally resting on Alice's again.
Silently, Alice took Jasper's hand in hers, leading him to sit beside her, though him in the chair she was previously seated in, closest to Carlisle and Esme, her taking the seat next to him. From the look on Jasper's face, it was clear that the question wasn't rhetorical.
Alice opened her mouth to speak, but Carlisle's voice came first. Suddenly, she felt thankful, not sure how she should start things, what to say.
"What's wrong, Jasper?", Carlisle asked.
Jasper's hand was still in Alice's, and she felt his hand tense, squeezing hers softly.
Yay! So I hope you guys enjoyed the second chapter of my very first ever fanfic.
Reviews are absolute LOVE.
Especially considering this is my first try at this.
Thanks for reading!