A/N: Thanks for the reviews so far, I do appreciate them. I recognize that being the very thing she despises is pretty shocking from Rosalie, but this Rosalie took a slightly different path to dealing with her experience and is coming from a much darker place than canon Rosalie. It will be explained in due time if I do my job correctly.
The word that occupied Alice's mind was flames. There were flames in her body: the burn of another vampire's venom pouring into her open cuts, flames from the gashes inside her most sensitive area, flames in her brain from her own dizzying screams, and flames of rage in her heart and mind. She hadn't stopped running for about four hours and she wasn't entirely sure what state she was in, let alone what continent. If there was a god out there, he or she or it had sat by and watched while a bloodsucking fiend set every vein in Alice's body on fire and mercilessly ripped away her heart and her soul and every claim to dignity and self-respect she ever thought she had.
Though she had no real memory of her human life, Alice had the vague notion that most rape victims didn't stay alive long enough to feel the full extent of the afterward-pain. If it were possible for Alice to die, she had no idea how to do it. She wondered if she had asked this…Rosalie, if the rapist would have had the decency to tell her. If Rosalie was a vampire, surely someone must have turned her before she turned Alice. Would the other vampires be as cruel as she was? After making camp mostly to lie in fetal position, whimpering without tears, for a few hours, Alice left again and continued running farther and farther away, hoping at some point she'd find someone who could help her. As hard as she tried to avoid villages, occasionally it became impossible and she killed and she ate and she savored the blood of those she murdered. It was disgusting, but almost impossible to control. Every time she wiped her mouth clean of human blood, she would ask herself, is this how Rosalie started? After murder, did rape feel like nothing?
Alice would have preferred murder.
After six days of aimless running, she stopped on a rock that looked comfortable for sitting and closed her eyes to the sight of a blonde boy who was every bit as lost as she was. It was strange, she thought, that she could be dead and still dream. She saw her own form appear in the vision, extending a hand and introducing herself to the boy. He was Jasper and she was Alice. Dream-Alice told him that they were going to fall in love and live with a family that only ate animals and didn't hurt humans. The scene changed and they were sitting in front of a fire, holding each other under a blanket. Alice shuddered, imagining letting someone touch her so closely, but dream-Alice enjoyed it.
"Thanks for being so patient with me," dream-Alice said.
"Thanks for saving my life," Jasper responded, "or my afterlife."
Despite herself, Alice started to feel a certain warmth inside her that she hadn't felt since the dawn of her memories (only a few days). But soon the vision faded and she was once again completely alone. She brushed it off as nonsense, but as she continued to wander, the visions grew stronger. Visions of Jasper holding dream-Alice's hand while she stoically recalled the experiences with Rosalie, and Jasper declared that Alice's rapist was dead if he ever saw her. Visions of dream-Alice and Jasper running at lightning speed through a forest, chasing mountain lions and visions of a warm and nurturing mother holding Alice and assuring her that they would never let anyone hurt her again. If Alice were still human, the visions would have provoked tears. Rosalie had stolen everything from her, and not even left her with the ability to cry away her pain.
Days later, the visions became more specific. Jasper was moving toward Philadelphia. He would be eating dinner in a restaurant-bar next week.
Alice had no idea whether these visions even meant anything, or if Jasper was just a delusion her mind had come up with to help her feel less alone. As clear as the visions of Jasper were constant flashback hallucinations of Rosalie straddling her, hovering over her, chasing her down, following her, finding her and destroying her again. Perhaps her mind was giving her a choice. Follow this strange boy, or wait for Rosalie to find her again. Jasper was the obvious choice. But where was she, and where was Philadelphia? Who was she going to ask?
She started running again, and resolved to hold her breath when she arrived at the next town, so as to get some honest advice from someone. It took all her will and concentration to walk into a convenience store and ask the man there which town this was. It turned out to be a small town in New Jersey which, apparently wasn't too far from Pennsylvania, if you were a vampire. She had no money to buy a map with, and fearing her charm wasn't worth much, she grabbed one and ran away too quickly to be caught. Though she felt a bit guilty for stealing, she figured it was one of the least horrible interactions she had had with a human lately.
The closer she got to Philadelphia, the more nervous she became. What if there was no Jasper and she had just dreamed him up? What if somehow Rosalie was planting these images in her mind to try and trap her? What if she did meet this Jasper and he thought she was some kind of stalker and ran away screaming? And what if this Jasper was just as cruel and heartless as Rosalie had been? These questions continued to plague her when she finally reached the restaurant and sat down with her breath stopped.
"Hello there, ma'am," a server said, "what can I get for you today?"
"Nothing yet," Alice said, "I'm waiting for someone."
"Alright, should I let them know where you're sitting?" he asked.
Alice shook her head. "I'm kind of…surprising him," she said lamely.
"Right, well, okay," the server said.
The desire to rip open his throat was agonizing. After a couple hours of sitting, the wait became awkward. Alice could tell the servers were considering throwing her out, but before the decision was finalized, an angel walked through the door. He was just as she had envisioned: tall and blonde with bright red eyes as pleading and lonely as she imagined hers must have been at the time. She waited until he found a seat and positioned herself across from him.
"C…can I help you?" his eyes shifted nervously away from her.
"Hi Jasper. I'm Alice," she said warmly, "I've been waiting for you."
Jasper looked uncomfortable, unsure of what to say. "Why me?"
"This is going to sound crazy, but I had a vision," she said, "I was turned a few days ago and I didn't know where to go or who to ask for help, but then I had this vision of you and I came here, hoping maybe you'd be able to help me."
In Jasper's desperate looking eyes, Alice thought she saw something that resembled compassion. "You can see into the future?"
"I guess so," Alice said, "I actually don't remember anything before I was turned and that was just a few days ago."
He sighed. "I'm so sorry. Who turned you? How did it happen?"
Alice cupped her face in her hands, not feeling ready to share what had happened with a stranger. "Someone I hope I never see again," she said bitterly.
"I can kind of relate to that," Jasper said, "I wasn't taught to be afraid of women, but Maria completely stole my life. Told me lies and convinced me to turn other people and start an army with her. We fought wars together; Lord knows how many people I killed with her. I thought she loved me; she used me like a toy. I'm sorry," he sighed, "this is more than you want to know."
"It's okay," she said, "believe me, it's okay. I'm way too much of a mess to judge you."
"Then maybe there's a reason you found me," he said, "did you see anything else…in those visions of yours? About what we're supposed to do next?"
She nodded. "There's a man and a woman, married, with an adopted son. They're vampires like us, but they've found a way to live without hurting people. We're going to go live with them, and they're going to take care of us and help us not hurt anymore."
"I told myself I would never trust a beautiful woman again," Jasper said, "but then again what do I really have to lose? Lead the way, ma'am."