"For the Love of Jasper" One-Shot Contest
Title: Butterflies and Hurricanes
Pen name: Pire
Existing work: N/A
Primary Players: Jasper & Bella
To see other entries in the "For the Love of Jasper" contest, please visit the C2:
SM owns the characters, except Darcy.
Thank you for my beta, brain in the gutter!
The sweltering heat swallowed up any chance of a forgiving breeze; the trees stood stagnant and the mirage of quivering heat above the parked cars only enhanced the effect. There was no sign of anyone on this block of homes...except one girl screaming at the top of her lungs.
Jasper Hale's brow furrowed at the sound and pushed himself out of the pool, the water running off his body. He ran a hand through his hair and walked around the side of his backyard, opening the gate and stepping bare-foot onto the front lawn. He stopped behind a property-dividing hedge and watched, through a gap in the leaves, a brown-haired girl looking extremely distressed and tired.
"DARCY! DARCY!" she yelled, her voice hoarse. Her high pony-tail whipped back and forth as she ran through the streets. The girl looked so weary her gait was that of a drunken swagger. She stopped and bent forward, resting her hands on her bare knees, her chest heaving. Righting herself, she wiped her brow and called out again.
"Goddammit...why do you have go...and run away from me...today... of all days?" she panted loud enough for Jasper to hear.
She ran along the sidewalk again toward Jasper's house before it appeared she had decided the curb was the comfiest place on earth. She plopped down and rested her head on her arms where they were crossed above her knees.
She groaned aloud and lifted her head to the sky. Jasper couldn't see her face, as her back was to him, but he imagined her to be cursing the sun.
There was a rustling sound in the bushes on the opposite side of his yard and he watched as the girl whipped her head around. Jasper followed her gaze; behind some stupid, redundant shrubbery, there was a massive Saint Bernard, presumably Darcy. Peeing.
Slowly lifting herself from the curb, she tentatively stepped toward her dog, leash buckle in hand and holding it like a cop would hold handcuffs while going up to a potential runner. Her feet rustled through the grass and Darcy looked up at her. He wagged his tail, but stood his ground.
She stopped at once, on the sidewalk, and Jasper fought a chuckle as the unconventional scene folded out in front of him. He knew enough about his sister's dog that if the girl made any sudden movements, he would book it away from her or come leaping in the pursuer's direction.
She carefully lifted her foot and slowly brought it forward. Step. So far, so good. Darcy was still wagging his tail. Another step. Darcy, thinking she was playing a game with him, playfully planted his front legs on the ground while keeping his hind legs straight with his tail in the air. Shit. He's gonna r --
"No!" She barely got the word out when Darcy started barreling toward her at an unabashed speed. She turned quickly to get out of his path of destruction when she crashed into Jasper's body.
Thinking quickly, his hands grabbed her shoulders and he pulled her frame down, toppling over onto his green lawn. Darcy barked once before the dog ran his long, wet tongue from her jaw to forehead.
"Ugh, Darcy, get off me!" She hid her face into the Jasper's chest trying to hide from a slobbery grave. Suddenly a low chuckle traveled through her Jasper's chest and erupted into a laugh out of his mouth.
Suddenly aware of her predicament she broke herself from his arms, stood, and clipped Darcy back to his leash. "You're such a bad boy, Darcy. Don't ever do that to me again!" she stomped her foot. Did people really do that? "You scared the hell outta me. I thought I lost you!" She wrapped her arms around Darcy and murmured something Jasper couldn't hear.
Standing quickly with the leash wrapped around her wrist, she continued to pet Darcy while she spoke to Jasper, avoiding his gaze. "Um...thank you," she fidgeted with the collar around Darcy's neck and wiped her brow with her other hand. "I would have landed on my ass."
"It's no problem at all," Jasper said, and Bella visibly shivered; she finally looked up at him.
She was beautiful. A few strands of hair had fallen out of her ponytail and a beautiful flush was on her face probably from running around in one-hundred degree dry weather. The slope of her nose, her full lips called to him; his eyes roamed down her body quickly, taking in her small body, her hips that led to long legs and small feet. His eyes back up to hers and she was gaping and shivered once more, a faraway look in her eyes.
He chuckled again, "Cold?" He smirked at her, wily and full of humor.
"Um..." she said, shaking her head, not sure how to answer that without looking like an idiot.
He stepped forward, closing the distance between them quickly. "I'm Jasper," he said holding out his hand.
"Bella," she replied timidly, wiping her hand off on her shorts before reaching out to shake his, eyes still trained on him. She gaped again and closed her mouth before she could be anymore embarrassed. He had to have seen her gawking at him. God, this is so embarrassing, Bella thought.
Jasper still held Bella's hand, still mesmerized by something he could not define; she looked incredibly familiar. "You look like you need something cold to drink," he said, still holding her hand, shaking it slowly up and down. "I just made some lemonade; come in and have a drink?"
Bella looked down at Darcy and back up to Jasper, her brow furrowed in decision. "Sure, I ran out of water about an hour ago, anyway." she said, smiling, aware but not caring that their hands were still bouncing. "Where can I put Darcy?"
Jasper reluctantly released Bella's hand and turned away, beckoning her to follow. "In the back. There's a pool -- if he likes to swim. I don't mind." He turned and flashed another smile in her direction and she followed him around the side into the backyard. He opened the gate for her and she stepped past him, glancing up at him through her lashes trying to be discreet.
He cleared his throat just as she passed. "Um, sorry for my, uh..." Bella turned back to him and Jasper gestured to his chest. "...lack of attire." He cleared his throat again and Bella blushed.
"It's," her eyes flickered to his torso and she bit her lip reflexively. "alright."
After letting Darcy loose in his backyard, and a "he looks right at home" from Jasper, Bella followed him through a big sliding glass door and into an - oh, God - air conditioned house. The blast of cool air hit her immediately after stepping in.
"God, it feels so good in here," Bella said, moaning as she sat on a nearby kitchen bar stool that Jasper had motioned to.
Jasper raised his brow and walked around the bar, opened the fridge and took out a pitcher of lemonade. The pitcher started perspiring and water droplets made trails as they rolled down the side of the glass. He set the lemonade down and reached up to in a shelf to get some glasses.
"So, Bella," he said into the cabinet, smiling at the sound of her name on his lips. "Why in God's name would you take your dog for a walk in this weather?"
Bella watched his one arm hold onto the cabinet handle while the other grabbed two glasses. Jasper turned and began filling the glasses with ice from the ice-maker, a small smirk on his face. He had dimples, Bella noted. So cute.
Bella raised her voice to be heard over the sound. "I just wasn't thinking, I guess," Jasper had stopped filling the glasses, making Bella's "I guess" to be overly loud. Bella blushed at the sound of her voice and Jasper smirked again, showing off the dimples she had just discovered. "I was here for my brother's wedding this last weekend. I'm staying until the end of the week. I just felt cooped up and decided to take Darcy out... But then it got unnaturally hot. And I got lost chasing Darcy after he ran after a cat."
Bella craned her neck to look outside and watched Darcy sniff the pool water.
"Oh yeah?" He looked up at Bella and handed her a glass. "Where did they get married?" Jasper tried not to let his voice show too much interest.
"I think was something like...'Strawberry Fields?'…"
Jasper's eyes widened, "Strawberry Farms Golf Club."
"Oh!" Bella pointed at Jasper with a smile on her face, "That's it!"
Jasper leaned over on the counter and stared out the window.
"Are you okay?" asked Bella.
He continued to look far away. "'And Emmett,'" he recited. "'You'll always be my favorite brother, my only brother,' then you laughed, 'and I'm so happy that you finally found your perfection.'"
Jasper locked eyes with Bella and her mouth dropped to the table. "You...you--"
"I'm Rose's brother," he began. "I knew I remembered you from somewhere. I remember thinking..."
"What?" Bella prodded.
"It's nothing. Let's just say you look incredibly different now." Jasper flushed for the first time he could remember.
"Well," Bella started. "Now it doesn't look like I accepted an invite into a strange gorgeous man's home that tempted me with delicious lemonade." She smiled and she couldn't believe herself when she winked at him.
They stood in a somewhat awkward silence for several seconds, flashing demure glances at one another.
Jasper smiled and cleared his throat. "You know, when I first saw him run by," he nodded his head toward Darcy. "I thought, 'wow, that's a big-ass dog,' and I waited for a huge, hulking guy to come after it. But no one did. Then, all of a sudden I hear this tiny voice yelling at the top of her lungs for some guy named Darcy. And, don't laugh," he said, pointing his finger at me and taking a sip of lemonade. Bella watched the liquid travel down his throat as he swallowed. "I was thinking, why in the hell would someone name their son after that guy in 'Pride and Prejudice'?
Bella gasped and interrupted, "You've read that?"
"Sorry to say, but no. I do have a sister, though," he winked. "And she made me watch the most recent movie. I actually liked it."
Bella bit her lip and Jasper looked at her, his hand frozen mid air as he was setting his glass down, his gaze focused on her lips. He licked his lips in response, tasting the lemonade there, but wishing it were something different. She blinked at him and a beautiful flush graced her nose and cheeks. Bella flicked her eyes down and looked at the grout between the tiles on the counter as if it was the most interesting thing in the world. How could a man she had just met and barely knew be flustering her this much?
Shaking her head mentally, she pushed the chair back with her legs as she slid off the stool, set her drink down, and walked toward the glass door, where she could see Darcy seriously considering jumping into the pool.
Bella felt a pull of static electricity and she heard some sort of whirring sound when she saw Jasper come to stand next to her.
"I saw you," he began softly, so as not to startle Bella. "I saw you sit down outside my house. You looked so upset and so hot," he cleared his throat. "I mean --"
Bella turned her head and looked up at him and smiled, but blushed again when he looked back down at her.
"Anyway, I saw you looking lost," he looked back up. "I opened my door and started walking toward you to ask if you needed anything, but you didn't hear me. You heard that noise in the bushes and I almost laughed out loud when I realized that this monstrosity was your dog," he gestured outside toward Darcy.
"Well, thanks for saving me. Darcy can get outta hand sometimes. He would have pummeled me to the ground if you weren't there," she paused, and then amended: "Well...I probably would have gotten out of the way, but seeing how you were in my way, I guess I'm glad you saved me from certain death by slobber." Bella laughed and Jasper joined in.
They stood in a comfortable silence for several minutes, only pausing if Bella had a question, before Jasper reached in front of Bella and pulled the door open, gesturing outside. "Want to put your feet in the water?"
Darcy was still debating whether or not to jump in, but when he saw Bella come out of the house, he lumbered over to her and nuzzled her leg with his nose.
"He's a Saint-Bernard, right?" Jasper said, scratching Darcy behind the ears.
Bella nodded. "I got him from the pound about 4 years ago. They were going to get rid of him and I couldn't say no to this big guy," she smiled and patted his back. Bella leaned down next to Darcy. "I forgive you, now, for running away," she whispered to Darcy, hoping Jasper couldn't hear, though he was still petting him.
"Shall we?" Jasper asked, nodding to the pool.
Bella skipped next to him and they sank down next to each other after Bella shed her shoes and socks.
Jasper watched her toes dip beneath the surface of the water and smiled in spite of himself. This small girl had come wandering up his street and got lost. He felt lucky somehow, even though he had just met her, he felt he knew her. She seemed genuinely sweet and somewhat shy when attention was on her, but she was forthright and knowledgeable on things he only wished girls were nowadays.
He watched her tuck a flyaway strand of hair behind her ear and she pulled at her ponytail to make it tighter. She wasn't dressed especially sexy...just a regular tank top with short running shorts, but it fit her and he liked it on her. He found himself wondering what she'd look like with her hair down, tousled in his sheets.
Her brown eyes sparkled against the pool's reflection as the sun started dipping lower in the sky. She must have been here for much longer than he originally thought. Time seemed to slip away as they were chatting about anything and everything.
Bella started to whisk her feet back and forth in the pool, and her featured flushed once again, a trait Jasper was starting to really like about her. He liked that she was so timid. I wonder if she's different when she' on top of -- A drop of sweat dripped down Jasper's brow as his mind started to wander in directions that weren't good for the present situation. His hands went to his lap and he leaned forward, his forearms resting on his legs.
Darcy came up between them and began sniffing Bella in her neck. When Bella started giggling, Darcy took that as "yes, I want to play!" and madly sniffed his way over her face and neck.
Bella's laugh rang through the air as she tried to push Darcy away unsuccessfully. "Darcy!" she gasped between giggles. "Jasper! Help!" she laughed again and tears streamed down her cheeks in a happy bliss. Her hair had come loose in her hair-band and was beginning to fall long over her shoulders and back.
Smiling widely, with a mischievous glint in his eye, he said, "Only if you really want me to. You might not like it this time."
Bella was laughing uncontrollably now, her shoulders hunched over, trying to hide her neck from her attacker. "Yes! Please!" her muffled cry was barely heard.
"You asked for it!" Jasper rotated his body and pulled Bella flushed against him. Darcy had run off and began chasing a bird. Jasper leaned in and whispered in her ear. "Hold your breath!"
She gasped, and at the last moment closed her eyes and mouth before they were submerged. Jasper opened his eyes underwater and looked at Bella. Bubbles floated around their faces, tickling them as they popped on their cheeks. Beautiful, Jasper thought as he watched her hair cloud around them, forming a moving wall to the outside world. It snaked with the waves and weaved itself through Jasper's hair. Their faces were so close he could kiss her. He could feel one hand gripped tightly around his bicep and the other on his other arm.
Bella's eyes were closed tight, her nose squinted up which created an adorable "x" to form in the skin just below her brow line.
He fought the urge to laugh underwater, so he pulled her close again and resurfaced, and pulled them to a spot where he could touch the floor while keeping his legs bent.
Bella gasped the moment she felt herself lifted out of the water. Jasper watched her open her eyes, blinking. Water droplets clung to her lashes like snowflakes and when she blinked, they quivered like an icicle about to fall from a roof. Jasper's fingers spread along her back and he gently pulled her to him so slowly Bella didn't notice until her chest was flushed with his. She murmured something that sounded like "blue eyes" but Jasper couldn't be sure. Bella's eyes flickered down to his mouth and she licked her lips. Jasper couldn't do anything but part his lips and breathe shallow breaths.
Would she want this? Is she even single?
"Jasper," Bella breathed. Her eyes were darker, but that could be the darkening day, Jasper tried to reason. He didn't want to ruin what a good thing he had with this familiar stranger by kissing her.
Jasper swallowed and his hands roamed her back, keeping his eyes on her, fingers splayed as to feel her more adequately. She was definitely small and she was also soft. His hands almost fit the width of her back and he let a small groan escape through his throat. His hands moved to her hips and he almost chided himself when he squeezed infinitesimally feeling the curves there. He dared to move his thumb toward himself so he would be holding her between his hands. She gasped lightly when he made circles below her hip bone. He could feel her legs moving through the water, keeping her afloat and he relished even the current of water she threw his way.
How could she be making him feel like this? His heart was beating out of his chest and he was sure he would die because of this girl.
He heard Bella breathing heavily, her nostrils flaring slightly. Jasper grinned at the thought that she could be suffering as bad as he. Her arms brushed lightly over his arms and they snaked up to his shoulders. Her breath wavered when she reached his shoulders, the water dripping from her arms. Jasper closed his eyes when he felt her hands caress his chest going lower and lower toward his belly button. She stopped abruptly when she reached the hair peeking out of his shorts and gulped loudly; Jasper snapped his eyes open, dark, and hungry with want.
Jasper badly wanted to hold her close and bury his head in her neck just to breath in her scent; Just to kiss her would put him over the edge.
"Jasper," Bella whispered again almost inaudibly over the soft lapping of the water against the side of the pool.
Gulping, Jasper tried to trust his voice not to crack. "Bella," he rasped.
She smirked wickedly, her eyes teasing Jasper as if saying, I dare you to kiss me.
Jasper, afraid to show the shock on his face, pulled Bella to him in one swift movement, holding her flush until he bent his head to her neck, hiding in her chestnut brown hair. He breathed through parted lips and placed a small tentative kiss just below her jaw by her ear. His hands slowly found their way to the floating hem of her shirt and ran his fingers across the warm skin just above her shorts.
"God, Bella," Jasper said to her neck. "I..."
Bella's head peeked over his shoulder and she whispered, "There's nothing to worry about, I promise."
As a promise, she kissed him in the same place he kissed her. He held her tighter, both arms circling her waist under her shirt.
"I don't know what you did to me, but I like it too much," Jasper said. "I've only known you for...three hours and I feel things I haven't felt for anyone I've ever been with."
Jasper could feel Bella smile into his neck.
Jasper kissed her neck again, her warm skin inciting a delicious electricity between them.
"Bella, I need you to know that this," he motioned between them. "Never happens. I don't just help random lost girls, give them lemonade, and..and -- I'm not like that. But there are some things you should kn--"
Bella's lips quickly interrupted Jasper. He breathed in through his nose and smelled honey, lilac...and tasted lemon. Oh God. His lips moved with hers, hands roamed her body, wanted to feel her everywhere, to know her. And he knew her with his lips. His hands came up to her face and he held her steady while he explored the unknown and tasted the feast that was Bella.
He wanted her closer and was almost frustrated at the push and pull of the waves in the pool. Bringing one arm around her back, he turned her and put his other arm under her knees. He stood to his full height, water rushing off their bodies like a waterfall. He walked slowly to the steps of the pool, his lips never leaving hers.
He never wanted her to leave, he wanted to know her more; wanted to know if she ate the marshmallows or cereal first in Lucky Charms, if she liked the toilet paper piece to be over or under, if she slept on the right or --
Jasper lost his footing on an especially smooth area of pool floor and Bella squeaked at the moment they tumbled beneath the surface. Bella rotated underwater and straddled Jasper, kissing him once before Jasper pulled them both up.
Bella's laugh echoed off the surface of the water and Jasper pulled her close. Darcy barked at the edge of the pool in excitement, hopping back and forth.
"Mmm...," hummed Bella; Jasper reclaimed her lips.
"Don't go," said Jasper into Bella's mouth.
"I'm not going anywhere."
Jasper pressed her up against the wall of the pool and placed gentle kisses on her mouth, the tip of her nose, and the space between her eye and her cheek.
"Thank you," he said when he touched his forehead to hers.
"For what?" she whispered.
"For getting lost."
How do you like your Lucky Charms?