Hello all,

So this is just a one shot that jumped into my head and wouldn't leave me alone. So I decided to write it down. It may be kind of choppy, as I've been writing in first person POV lately and this was a practice at getting back into the third person. I hope you all enjoy it and hopefully I'll be coming out with new stories soon.

Thank you for reading!

~Allora Gale

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"Jasper."

He heard his name whispered from familiar lips. He'd been careless. He should have been paying more attention. A century ago, his life would have already been forfeit for such recklessness. But not now, he no longer had to constantly worry about being attacked. Usually.

He stiffened. Why hadn't he been paying attention? Why had his thoughts been so consumed with Alice that he hadn't sensed this massive threat before it had come this close? Because she wasn't with him. She was currently away for the weekend, shopping with Renesmee and Rosalie. And he was glad that she wasn't here to witness this, however it turned out.

Reluctantly, he turned around. "Maria." He growled.

She was no more than twenty feet from him, dressed in a simple red summer dress that enhanced the crimson of her eyes standing in the halo of light cast by the street lamp. She smiled at him, that same charming, possessive smile she'd always used on him.

"It's been too long, mi amor." She said softly as she came towards him.

"Don't act like you missed me, or that you weren't planning on killing me." He growled.

Her eyebrows rose in surprise – he had never been this rude to her – before furrowing in anger. "I lost everything because of you, Jasper." She hissed. "Did you know Guadalupe took Monterrey? I lost everything. I have nothing left."

"And this is my fault how?" He sneered.

He felt her anger spike at his insubordination. Could she honestly expect him to still crave her attention like a kicked dog after more than a century had passed? Could she honestly think nothing had changed.

"Because you left!" She snarled, her accent becoming more pronounced in her anger. "And I didn't know if you'd been killed or if you'd deserted me. And you did desert me! Me!"

She raised her hand as though to strike him and he tensed for a fight. But before the blow could land, he sensed movement out of the corner of his eye and Alice was there, launching herself off the roof of the store they were next to directly at Maria.

She landed lightly on her feet directly in front of him, catching Maria's wrist in her petite hands. All her usual happy pixie-like expressions were gone, replaced with sharp, cold fury. "Don't you dare touch him." She hissed as she released her grip on Maria's wrist.

"What's this, Jasper? Your bodyguard?" Maria jeered, unaccustomed to being rebuffed as she rubbed her wrist tenderly.

"My mate." He answered softly.

Maria took a surprised step back. "But I thought . . ." She began, but cut off.

"You thought you were my mate?" Jasper asked cruelly, filling in her rest of her sentence. She had always been easy for him to read. "After the way you treated me? After the things you made me do? The things you loathed doing yourself?"

Maria's face hardened as she received each emotional blow. She seemed at a loss for words as she surveyed the fierce, amber-eyed couple before her; the man she had always loved and the vicious little pixie at his side. Alice saved her from having to say anything.

"I don't ever want to see you near Jasper again." She said in a low, deadly hiss. "And I will know if you so much as think of approaching him. He's not the only one gifted in this relationship. Now go, and keep your worthless life."

Maria glared at Alice before taking a step back, turning and fleeing into the night. Jasper drew Alice into his arms and planted a kiss on the top of her head as he watched Maria's retreating figure. Despite the fact that he'd never ever wanted to put Alice in contact with Maria, he was glad that she was there, in his arms, as the threat Maria had posed slipped away.

"You saw this?" He asked, though it was redundant. The likelihood of Alice just happening to be on the same deserted street at the same time he ran into Maria when she was supposed to be a hundred miles away were slim.

She looked up and smiled at him then, his smile, the smile that could always lighten up his day. He was relieved to see it, relieved to see the Alice he knew and loved again, instead of the deadly, furious woman she'd been a minute ago. "I was worried I wasn't going to make it in time. We were already back to the hotel when I saw it. Rose was furious of course. You'll have to apologize to her for ruining her weekend." She said in her soft, lilting soprano.

He nodded and hmm'd his accent as he drew her back into a hug. "I love you, Alice." He whispered.

"I know." She said and he could feel the love she felt for him radiating off her. "I also know where there's a cougar with your name on it." She took his hand and tugged him into motion, racing away from the deserted, sleeping streets and into the alive and awakened forest to hunt. Together, as it would always be.