There was something off about him, though perhaps it was only that Alice had gone hunting without him when usually they hunted together. When he wordlessly slipped out of the house and into the rain without bothering with a coat and hat, pretense though it was for us, I wasn't so certain.

"Where's Uncle Jazzy going, Mama?" Reneesme asked me, her eyes revealing that she too was worried.

"I'm sure he's fine." I reassured her softly. "He probably just went out for a walk."

"In the rain?" She asked skeptically. "Alone?" It was true Jasper didn't often go out alone. My daughter turned to look at Edward expectantly.

Edward shook his head. "He was counting." The others all had their ways of keeping Edward out with their minds; if Jasper couldn't avoid Edward, he would count.

Reneesme's expression shifted into a frown, and she asked, "Is Uncle Jazzy okay?" Reneesme was the only one in the family who could get away with calling him Jazzy, though Alice often called him Jazz.

"I'm sure he's fine." I repeated.

"Jasper just gets moody sometimes." Edward added, but we exchanged a glance. Jasper hadn't left without any explanation like this since before Reneesme had been born.

"Maybe I should go look for him." My daughter decided.

"Maybe you should give him some time to himself." Jacob suggested, entering the conversation for the first time. "Sometimes people need some time alone."

"Do you?" Reneesme asked innocently. They had rarely been apart since she had reached full maturity, and it upset her now to think he might have needed space and never said anything.

Jacob laughed. "I'm happy as long as you are, Nessie. It's as simple as that."

She giggled at him, and Edward rolled his eyes as he scooted closer on the couch to put his arm around me.

"I'm sure he's fine." Edward said it this time, whether for my benefit or his, I wasn't sure.

Diclaimer: Twilight does not belong to me, nor am I under the delusion that it does.