Disclaimer: As always, Twilight and its OC are not mine, I am just borrowing for my own creative play.
A/N: Thanks to everyone who have read and left feedback for the last chapter. Guh... doing an angsty chapter is a sure fire way to get feedback huh? But, honestly I've been thinking of this plot forever and how to address it and I am so glad, even though it is long overdue, to have done it ( finally). Am pretty happy over how it's turned out, but you guys might disagree with me, have other ideas and what not, and I'd love to hear it. Anyway, let's get on with the show shall we? Oh and yeah... the little Carlisle-Jasper part , Kate that's for you , Happy Birthday!( I just had to insert it...eeks)
Baby Baby, No?
It took me a good few seconds to recover from my own shock before I jumped into action.
Some towels would be good. My mind said. Good thinking, I thought and started rifling through the kitchen cupboards looking for the towel drawer. I heard his muffled voice behind me,
"I can't make it stop,"
Where are the fucking towels?!
Almost growling that my brain decided to go porridge on me when I needed it to be working right this very second, I finally, by stroke of luck found the correct drawer and grabbed a few towels out immediately. He was still poised over the sink, his right arm still dripping of blood; and I thought - how could a nosebleed bleed so much? I bunched the one towel, rethought then folded it into a small square instead before shoving it into his hand.
"If you look down like that, it's not going to stop…Tilt your head up, hold the towel under your nose, we need to get you sitting down," I spoke to him in a voice that was far too even for me, I sounded alien. I couldn't tell if it was the effect of shock or because I was still in one, but I had a weird sense of being outside of my body, watching myself at work helping to clean him. My calm exterior belied what was happening in my chest though, I could feel the hammering behind my ribs, the thumping so loud my eardrums were resonating. It could have been a trick of light or my own hallucination, but I thought I saw Jas's chest beating in the same frenzied way behind the thin layer of his shirt as well. I did my best to clean his bloody forearm up, and tossing the soiled cloth into the bloody sink, I led him by the elbow towards the lounge.
All through this sudden burst of activity, aside from the one liner he'd said when I was scrambling to find the towels, he'd remained awfully quiet. I wanted to ask what was going through his mind, but was too scared to find out that it might concur with the black word flashing like a neon sign in my own head.
"Okay..here we are, why don't' you sit down, I'll be a minute… keep your head tilted bro, yeah like that…" I told him softly once he was seated. He tipped his head in answer, and our eyes met for a flash, but it was too brief for me to glean any emotion in them. I almost froze again when I noticed the towel under his nose was already starting to soak crimson.
I hurried outside, the feeling of dread growing inside me with every tentative step I took. Everyone was, as I'd left them a few minutes ago – relaxed, happy, unsuspecting. Why would they be otherwise? Jasper had been outside doing the same not 15 minutes ago. I felt physically sick at what I was about to do. So this was what Edward felt like when he was the bearer of bad news not so many years ago.
I mentally cringed at seeing dad's grinning happy face as he turned away from mom to look up at me. Happy, relaxed, not a trace of worry.
One word, and his whole demeanor changed.
I wasn't sure if it was the look of dread on mine, or the streak of blood that was still on my hand from having to clean Jas's arm up or the combination of it – but he connected the dots instantly and practically sprung from his seat and flew inside. Dad was hardly every hasty, in fact he'd been teased (and admired) many times for his prim and proper -ness – like a lordly Englishman from a century ago; but right then he was everything but.
That one word spelled the end of the calm I felt when I came out a half a minute ago. There was a flurry of movements instantly, even as a thick blanket of tension fell over us. I knew I should be returning to the house to see if I could help any, but I couldn't move just yet. Directly opposite me, shocked eyes gluing me to the spot, was Alice.
I had never felt as sorry as I was then to have ruined her happy bubble.
I'm sorry Alice.
That familiar feeling that had been strangely absent from the pit of my stomach for almost a couple of years now settled right back in like it never left.
The bleeding hadn't stopped but it was finally slowing down. The towel I'd given Jas had been replaced by a new one.
"Give him some room to breathe people, " Dad had ordered tightly when I returned to the lounge again. Everyone was hovering around him at first, wanting to know what was happening and wanting to give support I suppose. I made myself useful then, and started to pull everyone else but Edward and dad systematically away from Jas, making them sit instead on the couch at the opposite side, a good distance away. I felt displeased eyes glaring at me and ignored them, choosing to stand in attention beside my wife, myself watching in rapt attention at dad, Edward and Jas on the other couch.
When I had gone to fetch dad, Jas had been sitting upright on the couch, but he was slumped against the backrest now. Whether it was just my worried mind conjuring images or not, my brother suddenly looked as pale as he had been 3 years ago, when he was sick with that horrible disease. The memory of almost losing him a few times made my throat dry. Dad was sitting on the ottoman pulled up in front of him, monitoring his bleeding, fingers pressed on his free wrist. Edward stood above them, pinching the bridge of Jas's nose and pressing what I could only guess was a cold compress against his forehead. Both of them the picture of perfection at their chosen field of work - face concentrated at the task, devoid of any trace of emotion. As if Jas was merely another patient.
I knew them too well though, they were schooling their faces, reining in whatever emotion they were feeling about this tightly inside them. Perhaps not for Jas's sake at the moment, but rather for the audience behind them.
Mom, Alice, Rosie and Bells.
It would take a mere sniffle of a sound and I was sure the storm would erupt. Even in this dead settled silence in the room now, I could sense a certain heaviness in the air, just waiting for a trigger to unleash its judgment. Gauging from the rigid postures of everyone sitting on the couch beside me, I doubted anyone was eager to face that monster. I looked at Jas again, noting the lack of emotion on his face, like dad and Edward. Not a crease of line to say that he was at least worried or thinking of the same thing we all were. He, was not ready to face this.
Hot white pain gripped at my insides.
How could this happen now?
Why did this happen?
Not half an hour ago he was lying beside me the picture of perfect health. How could this happen to him now?
I perched rigidly at the edge of the couch, squeezed between Rose and Bella – hardly even breathing. There was an awful, awful silence in the lounge and no one else, except for the three people in front of us, made any movement. Despite the exterior calm, my mind was running mad and screaming inside. A torment of gale. The hem of my favorite white dress was being wrung tightly by my fingers, knuckles almost as white as the wretched material now. Jasper had always loved this dress on me and for that reason, I was always very careful with it. I would have cut these very fingers on another day but right now I couldn't care less if the hem tore. The tension was killing me.
I felt like throttling somebody for daring to throw a spanner in the works. NOW. When we had just come out of this 2 year long restriction. Just recently decided to get the ball rolling with our very own baby project.. he had just recently begun to trust himself again..
Where was the fairness in all of this?!
Why now? Why him? Why us?
God what did we do to deserve this now?
I wanted nothing more but to cradle him in my arms, and tell him I was there, tell him things were going to be okay. Even if I wasn't too confident that things were okay. It wasn't just the physical distance, no thanks to Emmett; but the look he was wearing on his face – that look that told me he was far, far away from this room now, just made this feeling inside me even more worse than it should. I hated it when I couldn't reach out to him.
Baby look at me.
I felt lost, disconnected. Floating in space like a dead rock with no point of reference to keep me in orbit.
I hated this feeling.
Look at me Angel. Let me in.
"I'm sorry about the cake…"
I felt my breath release finally at the sound of his voice. Finally. Contact.
How long had it been since our world tilted on its axis again? It couldn't have been more than 5 – 6 minutes but it felt as though I'd been stuck in this tensed bubble forever. He sounded strangely – fine, even perky. I would have imagined he would have sounded strained and stressed, the way everyone was looking like right now, but he sounded fine. Too fine. Too calm. It made the layers underneath my skin itch.
I still couldn't reach him. He'd cocooned himself out of reach and this was merely a puppet brought out in his stead.
His comment started a chain of little conversations, ending the tight silence that had been hanging in the room not too long ago. I heard Bella telling Jazz to not worry about the cake as we could all make another one quick quick, her voice also tinged with that element of perky that sounded so grating in my ears suddenly. Then it was Rosie agreeing with Bella. An then Emmett joining in, saying something about the taste of it. A snort, a little laugh somewhere.
What the fuck was everyone on about, acting as if nothing consequential just took place here? Why were they talking about cake?
I couldn't join in with the small talk, but I couldn't not listen to their inconsequential bullshit either. It made me seethe.
"It was very good though…you girls did well..taste just like mom's.. well almost.."
A giggle, laugh. Emmett's boisterous voice agreeing with Jas over…
That goddamn cake again.
It's a goddamn cake! If anyone so much as mention that cake again…
"You know.. I think there's three good slices in the kitc.."
I couldn't stand it any longer. This blasé attitude by everyone as if nothing's happened, as if Jas hadn't just been bleeding like a running tap in front of us, as if tomorrow wouldn't change for everyone..
"Goddamnit, it's a cake Jasper! Let it go!"
I felt all their eyes fall on me and the room had gone eerily quiet again. I stood there, shaking in balled up fury, glaring at him.
"Stop trying to smooth things out, you're not fooling anyone.." I hissed.
In the 3 years we'd been together, we had hardly ever fought. Disagreements yes, but never to the extent of actually verbally fighting with malicious words that could slice and cut. It was just not 'us'. I didn't think he was capable of ever being furious with me.
"Shut up Alice." He growled, finally looking at me. But it wasn't an affectionate gaze either. He was furious. Furious that I'd called his bluff, and forced him to come out of his cocoon.
"Or what?!" I goaded, my voice unnaturally shrill.
"Get a grip of yourself…." He retorted. That, just bristled me even further.
"You're not the boss of me! You get a grip of it! Who are you kidding, huh? Just because you, all of you won't acknowledge it – doesn't mean I won't! Ignoring it doesn't make it disappear Jasper! It's right in front of my face. Or maybe you just don't really give a shit what this means… to me… to us!!! Maybe you just don't care!"
Someone finally yelled at me to stop. Too late. I'd hurt him in the worst possible way. His body, even seated on the couch seemed to stagger at the weight of my outburst, my slanderous words. I felt the bubbling cauldron in my chest brim over finally, bringing with it hot white tears spilling over my face. A hand perched on my shoulder but I shirked away from it roughly, suddenly feeling unworthy of any soothing from anyone. I ran. Hurt, Anger, Shame screaming for attention in my ears even as I sought the sanctuary of fresh air outside.
I hurt him.
That hadn't been my intention. But I hurt him.
Way to go Alice. Way to go.
I flinched at the sound of Esme's voice behind me, and then at her touch. Memory of Rose being chewed by her once flitted into my mind and I tensed fractionally at the anticipation. Esme might be the most docile of creatures out there, but hurt her cubs and there was no doubt what her response would be.
"Alice.." she said again. Gentler this time.
I bit my lip trying to quell the sob wanting to escape the prison of my chest. I didn't deserve her pity, much less her understanding. When I didn't answer still, I felt her hands grip both my shoulders before her soft body pressed against my defeated back. Drops of clear liquid dotted the terracotta tiled floor below us even as her strained voice whispered,
"He cares sweetheart… "
I wanted lightning to strike me and hurt me. The way I'd hurt him. I wanted the earth to swallow me and imprison me.
"I know… I'm sorry… " I sobbed, my chest staggering at the ache of my own admission. I knew and yet I still lashed out those lying words to hurt him. I clung to her hold tighter than I thought possible, even as I was lost in my own feeling of remorse.
"Talk to me honey.. what's got you so angry like that.." She asked, once I'd regain a semblance of calm over myself, but only barely.
Rubbing the tears from my face as best I could, I told her of his suggestion when we had first arrived here a few days ago. How excited I'd been that we could finally start because the two year restriction was now over. She smiled as I mentioned about my observation of him with the boys, how natural he was at being daddy. How when he thought no one was watching, how wistful and broody his face and demeanor would get. Her face creased slightly when I told her about his guilt over our loss in May, how he blamed himself for it, and how it's only been a day since then that he was starting to trust himself with me again.
"We've waited two years….what if he has to start chemo again? When are we ever gonna get a shot at this?"
She sighed. I watched as a myriad of emotion flicker past her face before she looked back at me in all seriousness.
"So you want a baby? Is that it? Is that why you got so mad with him in there?" She asked matter of fact, looking at me shrewdly now.
I knew I couldn't hide the truth from her.
My lips started quivering before I could even voice the real reason I'd gone all machine gun on him in the house minutes ago. My tears started rolling again, but I couldn't care less that it did now; in clear view of the woman who probably understood most the feeling of losing someone who was everything to her.
"I know what he's doing… he's trying to be strong for everyone as always, even though he's probably panicking inside. He's locked himself up somewhere inside there – and he's scared and alone. He's torturing himself, he knows it and yet he puts up this brave front. And I know ..it's for me. He puts it up for me. And I appreciate it, I really do – but it maddens me at the same time, because it's doing fuck all… excuse my language,"
I wiped at my face furiously, hopelessly trying to keep a semblance of decency on, but at the rate my tears were going, I knew it was futile.
"I'm scared Esme.."
A heavy sob erupted from my throat then. And with it, my entire heart.
"He is Everything to me…"
I saw how her brown eyes watered now before they spilled down her face freely like mine. She engulfed me in a tight hug, sharing my fear and pain. I didn't have to tell her a word more, didn't have to explain to her how I couldn't breathe at thought of losing Jasper again, couldn't fathom living if he wasn't - because she understood. She understood.
After I had recovered from the shock of the hurt her angry words had cut into me, I wanted nothing more than to run after her, to console her and tell her I was sorry for not being strong enough. For telling her to shut up. How could I have been so callous with my words with her. She didn't deserve to be told off like a little girl like that. She was only worried for me.
But dad held me on my spot, pleading with his eyes that I let her be for a while. And let them take care of my predicament first. My shoulders sagged and I slumped back into the couch. I was only mildly comforted when mom went after Alice shortly after.
It should be me going after her.
Granted, her words hurt. We had hardly ever fought, disagreements yes, but even then, trading malicious words weren't part of our repertoire. For her to say that I didn't care about her when it was furthest from the truth, it was like I had been put through the shock treatment, and I should have died, but ended up being merely paralyzed while the excruciating pain coursed through my entire body.
She was partly true though. I was acting as if it wasn't a big deal. Smoothing it for everyone like she said. Fuck, I'd be lying if I said this sudden turn of event didn't scare the shit out of me. This, was the last thing I expected to happen. The fact that it was Emmett who found me made it even more fucked up because I'd dreamed of that scenario before. And I remembered vividly how that dream had ended up. But honestly, what else could I do but try and put a brave front? Panicking in front of everyone – what good was that going to do? It certainly wasn't going to help me deal any easier, especially when everyone already looking at me like I was dying. And more than anything else, sure I was wrong, but I was hoping if I appeared strong, she'd have the strength to face this. And if she had the strength, then by GOD, somehow I would find the strength to face this too. Didn't she know that? Didn't she understand that she was my source of strength? When she was in that haze of despair when we lost our baby, seeing her hurt so badly – and there was absolutely nothing I could do to alleviate her pain, I'd never felt so hopeless in my life.
It wasn't my intention to play my nosebleed down, but of course it looked like that. I should have just kept my mouth shut instead of trying to ease the tension and talk "cake". What was I thinking?! Whatever ounce of intelligence left in me from all the treatments I'd had in the past, that probably drained out with that nosebleed. Gah!
But hearing Alice yell 'you're not the boss of me' was quite hot wasn't it?
That's it, you've lost all your marbles.
"What are you grinning about?"
I looked at dad dazedly. We were in his office where he was giving me a thorough examination to check if I was manifesting other symptoms of note. Here I was in my boxers no less, being examined by my own dad and I was suddenly thinking of how hot Alice was yelling at me, not in the context of the fight of course.
You better not get wood now.
I felt myself color a little at how embarrassing that would be, if it were to happen.
Honestly Jasper… where is your mind going?
Dad pulled my attention back to my current health situation. Something I was simultaneously grateful and grim about. He started shooting questions at me, compiling information that could be useful for later.
"Have you felt faint or fatigued in the last month or so?" He queried, taking notes on his doctor's pad. I shook my head. Truth be told, I never felt better. But it could be because the months previous hadn't been so stellar either, since we both took quite a beating mentally, and emotionally after the May incident.
"You've got a bruise on the back of your hip. Did you notice that?" He noted, looking at me with all seriousness. I whipped my head back so quick, I almost gave myself a sprain. A cold slice of fear hit me again when my eyes confirmed it. My wandering thought on Alice gone, I was forced to face the prospect of what this new development could mean for me. But dad didn't let me linger on my thoughts for long. He threw another question.
"When is your next test due?"
"June. I had the last one in Jan. My test was good. There was nothing wrong with my marrow. Everything was good dad…" I almost gasped, suddenly feeling winded from the onslaught of thoughts flying through my brain. His grip on me tightened fractionally and I was led to one of the chairs so I could sit. The black word hung over my neck like an invisible metal chain, and I felt worn down by it. When he was through with his questions, he replaced the pad down on his desk again and looked at me almost sadly.
"Jasper.. I'm not going to lie to you. This could be nothing. Or … you could have.." I watched him hesitate, his forehead creasing as if he was paraphrasing the statement in his head, " it could be a sign that you've relapsed,"
It shouldn't have taken me by surprise when he said the word finally. After all, I'd seen it flash in my head when I saw that drop of blood, so bright and red on the cake. And I'd heard it whispered in silence in everyone's faces even as dad and Edward helped to staunch my bleeding nose in the lounge. It was there, in between the lines of Alice's angry words when she yelled at me. Even when my mind was going all over the place, thinking inappropriate thoughts of Alice while dad was busy checking me over, it was always there, lurking at the edge of my consciousness.
Alice was right. I was trying to keep a blind eye to it. If I didn't acknowledge it, it wouldn't own me. The fear wouldn't be real if I had just left it to taunt me in silence.
But I was wrong. This fear was real. It was real whether I addressed it or not.
"I'm cold dad," I muttered softly, feeling the all too familiar chill from 3 years ago creep back into my marrow. Thinking I was physically cold, dad wrapped his white coat over me instantly before pulling me up and hugging me tightly. I felt like all small and tiny again.
"It'll be okay. You've gone through this and you've made it. If you have to go through it again, then you will and we'll be there for you. It'll be okay son,"
I wished his words were a comfort.
What if I didn't want to go through it again?
What if I can't go through it again?
I didn't dare ask dad, or anyone else the answer for that.
We returned home from the hospital at almost 9 and by then I was tired as hell. I'd been poked and prodded and blood and bone marrow sample taken out of me again. Dad made contact with my favorite doctor in the world, next to him of course – Dr. R, to tell him of my recent development. He wanted him to analyze my report seeing that he was my attending physician before.
"How soon before we get the report?" Edward had asked. I didn't even want to know.
"Two days. Maybe three."
I stood up and walked towards the patio. If they wanted to discuss this, I wasn't going to hear it. I didn't want to hear my family making plans for my relapse.
"We'll deal with that if we pass that." I heard dad answer Emm. I flashed him a nod of thanks for not answering that question.
"Honey… are you hungry?" Mom called from the kitchen.
"Thanks I'm fine.. I'm just tired…listen…you're still doing the party aren't you?" I asked, remembering dad's 50th dinner party tomorrow. If I knew mom at all, she'd probably cancel it and the last thing I needed was for everyone to start bending their ways to accommodate me again.
"I was thinking of cancel.."
"Mom.. don't, please. Don't."
"Honey…it's no big deal.."
"It is. It's dad's 50th, you can't just cancel it,"
"Jas.. I don't think anyone's in the mood.."
Before anyone throw in another two cents worth of their own thoughts about why the party should be cancelled, I closed the lid on it. I needed it, this grasping feeling of normalcy, and what's left of it and right now, I wasn't above begging to ask for it.
"Please… mom, please don't cancel it. It's a big deal for me too.."
"Look, I know what this is. I know you're all just thinking of me. And I appreciate it. But right now… I need you guys to treat me like you did this morning, yesterday. I need this. I don't want to be treated like I'm there already okay? Just a few more days…please,"
I must have looked pretty desperate when I said that because mom looked like she could cry right that very moment. I felt like a right asshole for putting that look on her face. Again.
"Well… thank heavens I haven't sent out the cancellation notice then!" Mom's voice came alive not a second sooner, thankfully ending the dreaded silence that filled the room after my little desperate speech. She touched my cheek very briefly; there was a tight pained smile on her face before she turned quickly and asked loudly if anyone else wanted a glass of wine, then promptly disappearing into the kitchen before anyone could actually take up on her offer. I didn't miss the strangled sob that came from that direction shortly after.
How could I let anyone go through with this again?
I disappeared into my room, wanting to just escape from everyone's scrutiny and pitiful looks.
She was there, my sunshine. Looking downright pitiful and lost.
Almost instantly, I felt a semblance of normalcy return to me again.
I hadn't even had the chance to say sorry for goading her anger, and telling her to shut up this afternoon.
"Hey.." She called, sitting upright on the bed instantly.
Her words collided with mine. I flashed a heartfelt smile. At least she wasn't angry with me anymore.
"I'm sorry for calling you a bluff and saying all those mean things to you.." she murmured to my face earnestly, even as my hand trailed along the milky whiteness of her skin. I knew this was probably not the best position to be in when trying to have a serious discussion with your loved one, but I had sorely missed her nearness this afternoon and evening.
I remembered the hurt I felt at her accusation and couldn't help but cringe at the memory of the pain in my chest again. For her to think that I didn't care about her…
"I care about you Alice. You are the most important person in the world to me. You do know this right?" It was my turn to ask her earnestly. I was relieved when she nodded at me, doubtlessly. When her face creased and a sliver of tear rolled down from the corner of her eye, my thumb was there to catch it.
"You were right, I was trying to smooth it down for everyone and for myself. I am sorry that annoyed you, that wasn't my intention at all. I thought it would help ease the tension on your faces. Besides, it's not exactly helpful for me to deal with my situation when all of you are looking at me like that…" I smiled wryly.
"I'm sorry baby… I am soo sorry…" she cried.
I shushed her with a chaste kiss on the lips.
"And believe me when I say this… I am fully aware of the implication of this thing to you and to us. I meant what I said about trying for a baby. I would want nothing more than to see that happening Alice. Please believe me.. I want what you want."
"I know angel.. I believe you. I believe you. Will you forgive me for doubting you? For getting angry with you? For being such a child.. I can't believe I threw a tantrum in front of your family!" she moaned.
"You're not the boss of me.." I singed song to her face softly, before chuckling at her. She colored at my teasing before swatting my shoulder with her tiny hand. I caught her wrist and turned her palm upward instead to kiss it. I felt her wriggle closer in my embrace before her lips landed on the nook of my neck, planting a deep, searing, healing kiss there. And then on my jaw, my cheek and finally on my lips. When she pulled away a few lingering kisses later, there were fresh tears in her eyes. I couldn't describe how much it hurt me to see pain gleaming behind her sad, misty orbs.
"I'm scared Jazz." She sniffled softly, fingers gripping on my shirt tightly.
I wanted to cry at the sound of her voice. So tiny. So desperate.
"Me too sunshine. Me too.."
"You won't leave me will you? Promise me you won't?"
Oh Alice. How do I answer that? How do I answer that when I don't even know.
"What if you and I try and do that baby thing tonight?" I murmured instead, trying to deflect from answering the question. I had an answer, but it wasn't something she would want to hear. The vehemence in her eyes and in her answer flayed me apart.
"I don't want a baby, or a future if you're not there Jazz. I don't care if we have to wait another few years, if you have to do it all over again. Or if we don't. I don't care. As long as you're with me, I'm happy and content. I just need You. Just you. Okay? Okay?" Her voice was trembling so much by the end of her speech, I could barely hear it.
From the moment that I saw the bright red drop of blood on the edge of the cake this afternoon right up till she said those gut wrenching words to me, my feelings had been well barricaded inside me. For so many hours since my prospect of the future tethered on the balance, even through the many conversations and words of comfort I'd heard from everyone, even after hearing mom's sob – my feelings were still safe, and I was still for the most part – pulled together. An unbroken fort. But hearing her plea just then, the vehemence in her eyes, the desperation in her voice – I couldn't hold the fort anymore. Like an obstruction dislodged, a guttural, strangled sob finally broke free from the back of my throat. And with it, my safely guarded emotions spilled out like a river gone wild. I held on to her, My Alice, my rock, as tightly as I could, clinging to her just as much as I was trying to let her know that I would never leave her, Never.
"I promise sunshine. I promise…"
We didn't let go of each other the entire night.
The first thing I noticed with everyone the next morning was the fact that most of us had puffy eyes. I didn't have to ask why – I had spent half the night trying to console my wife. She had been in the kitchen with Esme after Jasper pleaded to her not to cancel tonight's dinner party. And mom had broken down in front of Rose.
Quite frankly I wasn't quite sure how we were going to go through this party and pretend as if nothing was wrong. Quite frankly, I wouldn't mind if we all just had a group hug and sat moping in front of the TV and watch some GOD awful soppy film like the Notebook so we could all cry because damnit, I could use a little crying to ease the weight of this lug of brick I've been carrying all afternoon and evening yesterday.
But Jasper had a point. Treating him like he had relapsed when it wasn't even confirmed yet wasn't fair on him. Doing that wasn't going to help anyone, especially not him. And if he did…relapse, it was of utmost importance that he stayed positive from the get go. That meant now.
Whatever, if Jasper needed us to pretend for a couple more days until his test came out, I'd do that for him.
I just prayed, GOD I prayed it wasn't a relapse.
The party was a resounding success. Most of the guests were staff from the hospital. I had a feeling the party had been cancelled and this was a last minute scramble after Jasper pleaded her to not cancel it. It didn't matter who the guests were, the important part was that we all had a decent evening. Mom seemed to have rebounded from her breakdown the night before and played the part of the good hostess to perfection, even managing to slip in a joke or two on the dinner table. I guess dad had a heart to heart with her.
Found out later it wasn't dad, but Jas.
Apparently Jas spoke with mom this morning. I wasn't privy to the details of their conversation but according to Eddie, they had a heart to heart and crying session rolled into one. It was good to know that Jas finally had a bit of a tear going, I was getting concerned by his lack of emotion over the whole thing yesterday. If anything, it meant that he was acknowledging his fear, and in acknowledging that, he was facing it. That knowledge made me feel a whole lot better already. Especially since Edward told me of his own fears regarding Jas the night before.
" I don't think he wants to go through this again.."
"Of course - you dunce, who would want to go through what he went through, ever again?"
"I don't mean that Emm. I mean.. if it is a relapse… I don't think he wants to go through it again.. the treatment. I don't think he thinks he has the strength to do it all over again…."
"Damnit, Don't say that kind of shit Eddie!"
I had retorted to him a little angrily at first. But Edward just looked at me with this worried crease on his forehead. He was very observant, Edward and he wasn't the kind of person who would crack jokes over something as crucial as Jas's health.
"You know if it is it, if it's a relapse, it's gonna be harder for him to recover, you know this right?"
I knew. And that knowledge twisted in my gut like a malevolent dagger.
"Well if it comes to that Eddie, I can count on you to help me knock some sense into him right? We're not just going to make him give up? Can I count on you on that?"
I remembered the flash of hope in his smile.
"Of course. I'd do nothing less. We're together in this, right? Tripod. Always?"
I smiled now at the thought of how our conversation ended. We would always be that.
If we crossed that threshold and Jas needed a solid butt kicking to get his priorities straight, we'd be there day and night drilling him until he got it right.
There was nothing to fear about. This shit didn't own Jas, or us nor would we let it. Ever.
From across the room I caught Edward's gaze and flashed a smile at him. He was casually seated on the armrest of the one couch, seemingly engrossed in a conversation with one of the guests of the evening. I knew though from his discreet glances every now and then, he was keeping a watch over Jas who was seated on the ottoman, comfortably lost in another conversation with other guests. And I was doing the same.
Getting the call from Stephen on Wednesday morning at my office had to be the best call I had received in months!
It wasn't a relapse! He was fine. Okay, technically, not all was fine, but the point was it wasn't a relapse. That, was the important thing. I almost cried out of sheer relief when Stephen reiterated that his results were excellent and there wasn't any indication of leukemic activity in his marrow, at all.
Having worked the night shift, the minute my shift was over this morning, I practically raced home so I could break the news to him and everyone else. This kind of news wasn't the kind you wanted to tell over the phone.
I broke the news to him in my office.
"Son, I got the call from Dr. Rodriguez this morning…"
His body tensed immediately. Even though I was about to deliver relatively good news, it still hurt to see his reaction. He was, despite his actions the last couple of days, anticipating the worst.
I decided to not delay it any further. A wide smile appeared on my face even as I broke the news to him
"It's not a Relapse Jasper. It's NOT,"
It took a few seconds for him to somehow process the information. And when he did, I could sense the heavy burden lifting up from his shoulders.
"Really? It's not? I'm…I'm okay?" He asked, hesitantly.
"Technically no…you have a condition called ITP, your spleen is basically destroying your platelets, which causes the bleeding and bruising…" I started rambling on.
"But I'm relatively okay? I don't have Leukemia, I don't need to do chemotherapy again?" He interjected, shutting me up before I could go off tangent.
"Yes. No. No."
I felt the grin on my face widen even more as I confirmed all three of his questions in short definitive answers. The way his eyes widened and cleared as the information sank in him reminded me of a little boy with huge blue eyes, totally soaking in the sense of adventure even as I read the stories out loud to him.
He started grinning with me but halfway through, I felt a change in his demeanor. He ran both palms over his face and from behind them, I could see his face creasing. It didn't take long before his shoulders started shaking, and he was crying audibly, even if softly, in front of me. It was all I could do to pull him into my embrace and share his relief with my own tears.
"You're welcome son. You're most welcome."
Thank you GOD. Thank you.
"I think we should go and tell everyone else, don't you?"
The grin on his face was pure gold now.
A/N: There you go.... even if I am an evil author who leaves cliffies like no tomorrow ...I believe in HEA......( even if RL is not always like that..). Pure Alice and Jasper moments, even if angsty. Did you cry too when Alice said Jasper was her everything? Please guys.... do leave me with your thoughts!