Disclaimer: I do not own any of these characters. The lovely and talented Stephenie Meyer does.
A not so pleasant reunion
"I was scared as I walked back to my car. I hadn't noticed it had gotten so late. I loved books and was unaware that I had fallen asleep in the back of my cozy, 24 hour, neighborhood coffee house. The thought now that I could feel the presence of someone following me made nervous. I could feel the bile rising to my throat as the nausea started to take over. When I got to my car my hand was trembling, so naturally the keys slipped out of my fingers. When I quickly bent down to pick them up I was met with a large pale hand grabbing my keys as I reached for them."
"Jasper is that you?" I hadn't seen him since they left. I was shocked he was here now. Jasper of all of the Cullens would have been the last one I would think I'd ever run into, if ever running into one of them again had been a possibility."Sorry I scared you Bella." he sounded even more pensive than he usually did. I knew I should have been afraid here, alone with Jasper in the dark, I mean he did try to kill me after I received a papercut on my eighteenth birthday. But I wasn't scared, I was curious."It's fine Jasper. W-why are you h-here? Where is everyone else?" I stuttered a little bit. It had been two years since they all left and I had gotten over it finally after about a year thanks to Jacob. He had been there for me and helped me through my darkest time. We were still friends and at the time he thought he had had feelings for me other than friends but he realized he was just wanting too hard. He realized this when he met Stephanie. She had started going to Forks High with me during the last half of my senior year and he had imprinted on her immediately. I was happy for them and happy that we could focus on the true friends we were and not on all the advances Jacob was always trying to force.
"Wait, Jasper, how did you find me?" I asked now very curious as to why he was there.
"Bella I came here looking for you. I had been hanging around Forks trying to hide when one night I followed him to the diner and I heard your father chatting with Cora, the waitress there, she had asked him how you were doing in Seattle so I have been here for 2 weeks looking for you." Jasper was speaking so fast I almost didn't understand him. I was starting to feel very anxious, but realized it was Jasper that was feeling it and it was radiating from him.
"Okay Jasper calm down. I can't keep control over myself if you keep acting like this. Now...where-is-everyone?" I repeated it, annunciating every word slowly. He closed his eyes and I could feel him calming himself. He opened his eyes and I could not only feel his sorrow but see it in his eyes. It then hit me, Alice! Where was she? He would never come to me without Alice. She had once been my best friend. She had even told me I was to be her true sister one day. That had all changed when Jasper almost attacked me that fatefull day. But why was he here?
"Alice...where is Alice?" at the mention of her name his face fell. His sadness became so heavy, I slid down the side of my car and hugged my knees willing the tears to go away. This could not be good. My body defied my brain and the tears started flowing like mad. Jasper looked over at me and before I knew it, with his vampire speed, he was next to me embracing my trembling form. He used all the power he could muster to calm himself and me as well I could sense it was difficult for him to do. At first this frightened me in a small way. Jasper had never been this close to me, let alone held me. I pushed it all aside, this had to be bad news.
"We can't talk here. Carlisle is back at the house in Forks. We need to go back there Bella you need to hear this from him, not me. Is there anything you need to do before we go?" he was suddenly very serious yet gentle as he helped me up while still embracing me. Whatever was going on I knew it was bad. And Alice, what happened to my friend? But if I was going back to Forks, would Edward be there? After 2 years and finally getting over him leaving me I couldn't see him.
"Is...is Edward... Is he going to be there?" he didn't answer me. I could see a longing in his eyes that told me there was more to the story I would hear in Forks. "I just need to know Jasper. I can't face him. It has been a year since I last cried over him and I don't need those emotions coming back." He looked at me with compassion in his eyes and shook his head. "No Bella, just Carlisle." I was releaved and by the looks of it so was Jasper. "Well then I guess I need to go pack a few things. I don't have classes tomorrow but I will need to be back the next day. Do you think I will be?" he thought about it for a few minutes. "I don't know Bella, you might want to call your professors tomorrow and explain you are out of town for a few days, family emergency?" he looked hopeful, probably at the fact he called himself and Carlisle family. "Okay I will. Are you coming with me or do you want to meet somewhere else later?"
"I'll go with you Bella. It is best if we hurry, Carlisle isn't staying he was only here to talk to you. He felt you needed to know." he was really scaring me. I wish he would just tell me so I didn't have to wait. "How are we getting there Jasper? Car? Plane?"
"I can run with you on my back if you just pack enough to go into a backpack. That way we get there in record time so Carlisle can head back and you may not need to miss your classes." I shrugged it did seem like the better idea, and I had done it with Edward before so I know I wouldn't get sick or light headed by the fast movement. I could just close my eyes and rest.
"Sounds good, let's get back to my place so I can pack. Oh but I'm gonna have to tell Angela and Jessica I'm leaving. You might want to wait at the front gate where they can't see you." he looked at me questioningly.
"You live with Angela Weber and Jessica Stanley?" he kept looking as though he didn't believe I was still friends with them.
"What?" I asked getting annoyed by his glances.
"I just didn't think you would be friends with them still." now that he confirmed my suspicions I was livid. That one comment brought back so many things from 2 years ago.
"Yeah well if Edward hadn't left me then I might "really" be part of your family now and I wouldn't have had to cling to the friends I had at the time so that I wouldn't become a total and utter basket case." I was angry but it didn't affect Jasper. He remained calm and pushed his emotions to me to sooth my nerves.
"I'm sorry Bella, you know it was my fault everyone left. I tried to kill you and here I sit in your car and you have forgiven me." his sadness once again made me forget about any anger I was feeling.
"No Jasper, i'm sorry, none of this was ever your fault. I knew what I was getting myself into when I decided to fall in love with a vampire. I knew the consequences of being around all of you guys that day or any day for that matter. He is the one who didn't listen to my cries when I begged him not to go, to call you guys back because I didn't blame you for anything."
We arrived at my apartment building and I turned to him before exiting the car. "Jasper if anyone is to blame for anything it is Edward. His stubborness to keep me safe instead of change me and let us love eachother, that is to blame, not you." I touched his cheek as I said this and the cool familiar sensation came over me. His skin was smooth yet hard and cold to the touch just like Edward's had been. I dropped my hand and exited the car with a quick smile over my shoulder.
"I'll be right back. Stay here." I said with a smile, Jasper simply nodded.
It wasn't hard making up the story to Angela and Jess. I simply told them I needed to help Billy and Jacob with something in La Push and I had clearance from my professors. They told me to have fun and drive safe. I went to my room and pack a suitcase, I decided Jasper could call Carlisle and tell him we were driving instead. I never really got to know Jasper that much and I figured it would be able to know a little bit more about him after our 4 hour drive. When I got back to the car Jasper was adjusting the stereo looking for a country station. He started to open the door to get out but I stopped him by holding up my suitcase.
"Bella you can't carry that while I am running, it is too heavy." I smiled at him hoping he wouldn't be too angry with me.
"Well Jasper, it occured to me we don't really know eachother very well and so I thought we could drive. Plus if i'm going to be in Forks I might as well take the time to visit my friends while i'm there, like Jake and everyone else in La Push and of course Charlie." He wasn't mad, but he had a strange look on his face. I didn't want to pry so I just looked at him from my spot behind the wheel. I hadn't even closed my door yet.
"Well..." he hesitated. "...let me call Carlilse so he doesn't worry. I'm sure it will be fine." He smiled and I took that as my cue to close the door and start the engine. As I was buckling my seatbelt Jasper gentally grabbed my hand. "Thank you Bella." was all he said as he held it tight, tight enough not to hurt me, in his own. He didn't seem to want to let go so I let him hold it all the way to Forks as we talked about how he came to be with the Cullens and Alice and all the things he had done prior to them. He had had a hard existance and I was glad he shared it with me. Not once did he talk about what he had been doing or where they had been for the past 2 years. And I felt a ripple of sadness come from him at the mention of Alice. Something was very wrong.
The drive up to the Cullen mansion was harder than I thought it would be. Carlisle was on the front doorstep before I even put the car in park. At vampire speed he made his way over to my door and pulled me into a hug.
"Bella, I am so happy to see you dear. I wish it could have been under better circumstances." his expression was sullen. He gripped my hand gently as Jasper slip his hand into my other. He was carrying my suitcase and leading the three of us into the house.
"I think it best if we just get this over with Carlilse." Jasper stated as he put my bag down in the foyer. "Shall we go to the livingroom?"
"That would be more comfortable for Bella, yes Jasper the livingroom would be fine."
I followed the two men into their livingroom. The house was surprisingly clean for being vacant and everything looked the same. I was surprised that being here wasn't bothering me as much as it was when we pulled up in the car, but I'm sure Jasper was helping with that.
Carlisle took a seat in an oversized armchair with Jasper standing beside him. So I took a seat on the sofa across from them. "Okay Carlisle, I can't take this anymore. What is going on?"
"Well Bella," he interlocked his fingers and placed them in his lap rotating his thumbs over one another. Probably a habit left over from when he was human. "In our world there is a royal family of sorts. They have a guard known as the Volturi. The guard is made up of vampires with special abilities like Edward, Alice and Jasper possess. Well the leader of this "family" is Aro. He has been after Alice's ability to see the future for decades. Of course she never would leave us or her chosen lifestyle. You see the Volturi live in Italy and still feed off of humans. When the Volturi aquired the knowledge that a human know the truth about our family, they wanted to come and destroy not only us, but you as well Bella." Carlisle paused to gage my reation. I must have turned as white as them because a second after I paused Jasper was next to me with a comforting arm around my shoulder.
"They were going to k-kill us?" I stammered.
"Yes. But instead of heading here to do so, Aro got an idea. He decided to give Alice a choice. If she joined the guard he would not harm any of us."
"She went to them." I barely heard Jasper speak. I turned to him with my whole body and saw the pain in his face. He looked up and our eyes met. "She loved you Bella. I hope you know that. She loved us all so much." If Jasper had the ability to create tears they would be flowing.
"Jasper, what do you mean she 'loved' me. That's past tense Jasper. What happened? Where is she?" he let his head hang and sighed.
"Bella." Carlisle now took the floor. "She decided it was important to her to keep her family safe. She went to Italy to join the guard even after we all protested and assured her we could protect all of us ourselves. She had had a vision, and she didn't let anyone know what it was. She couldn't cloud her visions forever though and Edward caught sight of it just as she was leaving for Italy. He told us before he left to stop her."
"What had she seen?" I asked eventhough I was sure I didn't want to know.
Carlisle let out a deep breath out of habit. "She saw two possible outcomes. If she arrived at the designated time, Aro would call off the guard. You see he had already sent them out to silence us in the event Alice wouldn't come. He knew she would see it and she would choose to go knowing we wouldn't have time to protect ourselves, or you Bella."
"Me? He had someone in Seattle waiting to s-silence me?" Jasper pulled me closer putting his other hand around mine when he felt me start to tremble.
"Yes Bella he did. Once the guard let him know she had landed in Italy he called them off and they returned to him."
"But that doesn't explain why Jasper was talking of her in a past tense. If she made it there and this Aro called off the guard, why the past tense?" I couldn't stop the tears flowing from my eyes. Jasper brought up a hand to my cheek and wiped away the tears with his fingers.
"She's dead Bella!" he suddenly blurted.
"Jasper!" Carlisle shouted.
"I'm sorry Carlisle. I couldn't wait any longer. The sadness and fear coming from Bella had me unhinged. I had to do something. The wait was causing her so much anxiety.
I was in shock. The worst, as I had expected, was true. My once best friend and sister was gone. I never even got to say goodbye. "I take it Edward didn't get to her in time then?" My question was barely audible. Both the men in the room whipped their gaze to my face and the looks upon theirs told me there was more.
"Edward made it there Bella, but the Volturi will not be defied. He was killed trying to get Alice back. I'm so sorry Bella. I know it took you a long time to get over what happened, and now you have to lose him all over again. We just needed to tell you before you went looking for him yourself."
I looked over at Jasper then. "I wasn't going to!" I all but yelled defensively.
"Yes you were Bella. You can't lie to me" and he tapped his temple.
"What are you saying Jasper?" I just stared at him. There was no possible way that Jasper could know. He was an empath not a psychic.
"I don't know how it happened Bella. All I know is that as soon as Alice's existance expired, I could see what was going to happen next. It's like she willed her power to me. I knew you had been recently thinking a little bit about Edward and had vacation coming up."
"But wait." I blatantly interupted. "If you can see me, then why did you need to track me down though spying on people?"
"Bella I can see your path as it is chosen just as Alice could. I't doesn't give me the ability to see exactly where you are in the present."
He talked more about his new gift and everything else that had happened. I just sat there in his arms listening while Carlisle excused himself to go make a phone call. I was devastated now, more than ever. I would never see Edward again. I would never have the chance to make him see, eventhough I thought I had been completely over him, there was still love for him. He was gone and so was Alice.