"Write For The Other Team" One-Shot Contest
Title: A Quiet Angel a Dazzling Smile and a Question
Pen name: animal8
Disclaimer: I do not own Twilight, it belongs to Stephanie Meyer.
A Quiet Angel a Dazzling Smile and a Question
Alice was flitting about around the house, always doing one thing or another. I never had enough energy to keep up with her so I contented myself with merely watching from a distance.
She paused in the kitchen long enough for me to see that she was unconsciously rubbing her arm; her fingers tracing the patch of skin that I knew, under the clothing, to bear the scar of her past.
Life had always seemed so straight forward to me back then, back before I realised what was really going on. When I think about it, I can't believe I had never realised sooner; I knew that something wasn't right but I put it out of my mind and let it pass. That could have been the most dangerous mistake ever, it nearly cost me the reason for my existence.
It started back in high school… (Remembering)
The teacher was droning on about some unimportant thing or other, but I couldn't focus on anything she said; not helped by her monotone voice. I was already thinking ahead to the high school prom in little over a month.
It was an event that I would preferably avoid, but my best friends Emmett and Edward had finally had enough of my 'emo-ness' and were deciding to take action. So I was being forced to attend the dance with them and they expected me to find a date just like that.
I had never taken any particular interest in any of the girls in Forks High, the majority of whom had reputations as sluts. The only two I could think of, who were decent were my sister Rosalie and Edward's long-term girlfriend, Bella.
So needless to say, chances were fairly slim of me finding someone to invite to the dance as my date. The bell rang, releasing me of the torture of my thoughts and I quickly left in the direction of the dining hall.
As I rounded the corner at the end of the corridor, I was suddenly crashed into by something small, but with a lot of force behind it. Shocked, it took my brain a minute to register the short, pixie-like girl now sitting on the floor, having been sent sprawling by the impact.
Seeing her scramble to her feet, I offered a hand to help her up but she ignored it and stood up by herself. I looked at her, taking in her spiky, short black hair and fashionable attire.
She kept her head down, eyes focussing on the floor as she mumbled a hasty sorry and continued speeding down the hall. I turned to watch her go, feeling bewildered by her seemingly cold attitude. Probably just shy, I told myself though for some reason her behaviour left me feeling slightly hurt.
Only once she was out of my sight did I carry on my previous path to the cafeteria, entering and promptly heading over to my usual table without so much as bothering glancing in the direction of the food line.
Edward and Bella were already sitting there, trays in front of them and quietly talking while doing that couple-y gazing into the other's eyes thing. They didn't acknowledge me as I sat down opposite them and I fixed my stare on the table.
"Hey, guys," a booming voice distracted me and I glanced up to see the big bear form of Emmett dragging a chair out and then falling heavily into it, causing it to emit a rather pained groaning sound.
Rosalie followed him more quietly, rolling her eyes at his buoyant behaviour. They started up conversation with the other two and were so occupied that they didn't notice at first that I wasn't paying any attention.
I was sitting, still in a dazed and bewildered state, wondering about the mysterious girl. I hadn't seen her before so I was almost certain that she must be a new student, but I hadn't heard any of the usual rumours that would precede such a development. There was a strange urge, like a need, that I found out more about her; I didn't even know her name.
"Hey, Jazz, what's up man?" Emmett call brought the rest of their attention to me and I felt like glaring at him for him.
"Nothing," I answered, not feeling in the mood for trying to explain something I didn't have any understanding for any more than they would. Bella was frowning at me curiously and my sister's piercing blue eyes bore into me so much that I was afraid she would see what I was trying to keep beneath the surface. "Seriously, guys, nothing's wrong," I chuckled uncomfortably.
They shrugged and went back to talking about whatever they were talking about before, but I still felt Rosalie's gaze on me and I hesitantly met it. She was watching me and we both knew the other so well, that I knew she suspected something was up. But still she nodded when I sent her a pleading glance. I didn't want the others to know until I had at least worked it out some at first.
I pushed back from the table again when the bell went for sixth period, which I had alone. Bella and Edward disappeared ahead of me, off to Biology, but I turned and headed straight to history. My daze was shaken off as I relaxed; history was my favourite subject so I was at least safe and boredom free for the next hour.
The surprise came when, after everyone was settled down and the teacher was gathering his notes, the door opened again. My head reflexively turned up and someone else entered, not bothering to look at the class.
My eyes widened as I recognised the unforgettable, spiky black hair that such in all directions. The girl walked swiftly and silently up to the teacher's desk, he looked at her disapprovingly but took the note she held out to him. He nodded and said something to her and she nodded in return.
She walked towards me and my breath caught in my throat when she glanced nervously up at me. She was absolutely beautiful. Completely stunning. Now, I wasn't the type of guy to go around using girls so I wasn't being pervy, so I wasn't looking at her inappropriately, but her face was so captivating. Her deep blue eyes were dark and knowing. It wasn't until she blushed and looked back down to the floor that I realised I had been staring.
I snatched my gaze away from her so I couldn't embarrass myself further and turned back to Mr Henderson. "Right class, we have a new student. Her name is Alice Brandon and I want you all to be nice and help her out if you can," he didn't bother looking up from his papers as he spoke and some snickers went around the room. She pulled out the chair next to me, the only empty one in the room and settled down.
Sneakily, I peeked out of the corner of my eye to watch Alice. She was taking a notebook out of her bag and began flicking through until she landed on a blank page. Her pen wandered aimlessly over the paper, tracing random circles and patterns.
When she lifted her head suddenly I jumped guiltily, but sent a gentle smile her way. I hadn't thought she was aware of my staring at her as I reluctantly turned back to concentrate on Mr Henderson's lecture. He was a much more interesting teacher and I never usually had to struggle so much to listen and take in what he was telling the class, but this new girl was proving a bigger distraction than I had thought possible.
For the entire hour, my eyes wandered back to her face again and again, completely against my control. By the time seventh period Gym came, I was frustrated beyond reason.
When I thought about it later, it was ridiculous for me to have reacted this way. I wanted to try and avoid her as much as I could lest she proved too much temptation, but she was too intriguing. There was just something about her…
I didn't know what it was at the time that was constantly drawing me to her side.
I wandered blindly over to the large building that housed the school gym and was probably the largest building in this whole town. I knew my friends would most likely be delighted that I had finally discovered someone who could hold my attention the way their partners did theirs.
My mind was clouded with Alice and those blue eyes that looked as though they had seen so much. Too much, I thought. A sharp noise from the car park made my head snap up instantly.
The noise turned out to be a boy, a few years older than me from the looks of him, banging loudly on the bonnet of his car. He looked furious and I found myself frowning, wondering what was going on. Someone was standing in front of him and my eyes widened as I saw who.
It was the pixie girl, Alice, and she was looking around a nervous and worried look on her face. She obviously wasn't comfortable with whoever this kid was. I could hear raised voices as the boy continued ranting at Alice and she just stood there, taking it all in.
I was beginning to feel the stirrings of my own temper as I watched his treatment of her. When he slammed his fist into the door of the car I began stalking over there, intent on giving him a talking to.
However, I barely made it three paces before they simultaneously looked up and saw my approach. I froze, unsure and still eyeing the older kid warily. The boy composed his expression to something close to neutral, but Alice was looking fearfully at me, almost pleading me for something.
"Is there a problem here, Alice?" I asked carefully, an edge of caution detectable in my tone. She shook her head quickly, but I caught the anxious look she cast to the older boy.
"I have to go home early for a doctor's appointment," she spoke softly. Her voice was musical to me, like light bells ringing. Her eyes were still begging with me and I couldn't shake the feeling that something wasn't right.
But I didn't know, so I did as she asked. I turned around and left, heading off to my class as if there had never been a problem. It didn't stop me from thinking about it though, which I did for the whole of Gym.
Bella, who also shared this class with me, noticed my distraction but was polite enough to leave me alone about it. I was thankful for that.
A hand on my shoulder when I emerged from the changing rooms had me shooting a foot in the air and I spun around to see a bemused looking Emmett and Edward standing off to the right of him.
"Alright, man," Emmett stated, "Something is up with you and you are going to tell us right now". They were both staring at me expectantly.
I sighed, knowing that they wouldn't get off my back until I spilled. I swear, Emmett was worse than a bunch of gossiping girls. The idea made me want to laugh, lightening my mood somewhat. "It's the new girl, Alice," I said slowly, hoping that he would leave it.
"Who?" He asked, looking confused and Edward smacked him upside the head.
"She was the girl that shared our first class with us," Edward reminded him, "You know the short one with the spiky hair".
"Oh, right," he muttered, "Well, what about her then?" He paused as he considered and then got a mischievous look and started waggling his eyebrows. "Ooh, Jazzy-boy's got his eye on someone at last".
"What?" Two voices asked in shock and I saw around Emmett's shoulder that Rosalie and Bella were approaching. I sighed harshly; I didn't want to be doing this. "Who is it?" Rosalie asked, suddenly interested.
"The new girl, Alice Brandon," Emmett grinned, slinging his arm across my shoulder and nearly knocking me over with the force. "Our boy is all grown up," he teased.
"Is this true?" Rosalie asked, turning to me with her brows raised incredulously. I nodded my head awkwardly.
They were still staring at me with that look on their faces and to prevent them from getting the Spanish Inquisition started on me, I told them some of the truth. "She bumped into me in the corridor and then I shared history with her," I summed up, purposely leaving out the incident in the car park.
Thankfully, they left it alone and I went back to my thoughts for the rest of the evening. I was determined to talk to Alice in the morning and find out exactly what had been happening today.
"Who the Hell was that boy?" James, my older brother, demanded angrily. His palm slammed noisily down onto the steering wheel as he pulled us out of the school parking lot.
"He was just a boy in my class," I whispered quietly, "I don't even know his name". Only the last part was a lie; I had found out from a girl in history that his Name was Jasper Hale, but I wasn't likely to tell him that.
James' breath hissed out as he turned to glare at me. "What did he want then?" he spat. I couldn't meet his nerve wracking glare, instead staring vacantly out the windscreen.
"I don't know," I answered. I thought back to how my heart had jumped in my throat when I saw him coming over to us. Part of me was worried that this blond haired, blue eyed God would get himself hurt by interfering with James, but the other…the other had leapt for joy when he noticed me.
My shoulders were still burning with the remembered heat from his body when we collided in the corridor. I wanted to talk to him and get to know him, but I couldn't risk him getting hurt. Maybe, I could trust him, though, he could help me.
"God damn it, listen to me when I'm talking to you!" James roared, his hand snatched my wrist and squeezed it painfully. I winced, biting my lip to keep in my cry of pain; I wouldn't give him that satisfaction.
I looked up and realised that we were home already, I felt myself relax in the hope that I could escape to my room and be safe for awhile. That ended when I turned to my brother and saw his face darkened with fury and angry lines etched into his features.
I swallowed heavily and cringed away into the door of the car. "You're going to pay for your insolence," he said venomously. Even as he said that, he was dragging me from the car and towards the house, one hand still clamped firmly around my wrist.
He threw me to the floor in the hall and I closed my eyes, picturing Jasper's face before my eyes and imagining his gorgeous smile as I let myself succumb to the pain.
I was pacing the courtyard outside the cafeteria anxiously. The others had left me to go inside and eat lunch. I had been waiting since this morning to speak to Alice but so far I had seen no sign of her and I was getting extremely worried about her.
Just as I was about to give up and go and sit with the guys I caught a familiar mess of black hair and immediately rushed over to her. "Alice!" I called out; watching as she stopped suddenly and her head darted up to meet my gaze.
"Hey," she smiled weakly at me but it didn't reach her eyes and I frowned concernedly. "I'm sorry I had to rush off yesterday," she hastily tried to explain, "I was late and my brother was annoyed that he had to wait so long".
"About that," I said cautiously, "Are you alright? You seemed pretty upset yesterday". Her smile faltered and I saw a flash of something in her eyes but couldn't identify it before it disappeared.
"I'm fine, Jasper," she sighed. I blinked in shock as she said my name. She must have noticed my expression because she blushed and quickly stuttered, "Um...some girls told me that I was sat next to you".
"Its fine," I grinned at her and she smiled back shyly. "So, let me do this properly," I held my hand out, "Hi, my name's Jasper, pleased to meet you".
Alice laughed brightly and placed her small hand in mine, her grin broadening. "Nice to meet you too, I'm Alice," she played along, her voice light and teasing, not trembling like when she had spoken to me yesterday.
My heart stuttered at her vibrancy, so different it was to yesterday. I didn't realise that I was once again staring gormlessly at her until she cleared her throat nervously and mumbled quietly, "I should get to lunch".
I opened my mouth to invite her to sit with me, but she had already sidestepped me and gone inside. I was left staring after her completely astounded and no doubt looking like an idiot.
Confused, I entered the building and directed myself towards our usual spot. My eyes, seemingly of their own accord, were already searching the room for my quiet angel. I found her, sitting still and alone at the far side of the crowded refectory.
She was unaware of me watching her like some obsessed stalker. I couldn't see much of her face, downcast as it was, but I got that feeling that something was off. Her head lifted and she slowly scanned the room until her shining eyes met mine.
I was frozen. In the time it had taken for me to register her gaze she had already looked away but the image of her eyes was forever engrained in my memory. The absolute heart wrenching sadness that I had seen there was enough to break my own soul.
My beautiful Alice was being tormented but something and I was damned if I didn't find out what it was. I needed to make her feel better. It was like my duty.
"Dude, he's staring at her again," I heard Emmet chortle. My eyes shot to his form and I glared at him. "Whoa, back down there, boy," he said, holding his hands up in a theatrical gesture of no harm.
"Leave him alone, Emmett," Bella came to my defence, "It's good that he's found someone that he likes". She turned to look at me then. "Have you spoken to her yet?" she asked.
I was hesitant; not particularly wanting to reveal the specific details of what we had talked about when there were suspicions forming in my mind. "Yeah," I said simply, silently hoping that she would drop it. I was never more thankful for Bella's natural intuition as she didn't ask any more about that.
I allowed myself to flick another glance in her direction as I felt myself fill with resolve that I would solve whatever she was trying to hide. Alice looked up then and I saw her eyes widen when she must have noticed my determination.
I was hiding in the car park while I waited for James to bother to come pick me up. I knew it was cowardly, but I couldn't let Jasper find me. He suspected something, I knew he did, he just didn't know what and I couldn't let him get close enough to figure it out.
"Get in the car," James' bored voice came to me and when I lifted my head I saw that he was pulled over next to me. I didn't know how he had noticed me crouched hear and I knew better than to question it.
Obediently, I stood up and not making a sound walked to the other side of the car and opened the passenger door. He pulled out of the lot as soon as I had slid into my seat so I had to scramble to put my seatbelt on.
"Why were you hiding in the bushes?" he asked abruptly, startling me that he had actually bothered to be curious about something. I shouldn't be surprised really; it was pretty weird behaviour, even for me.
I must have been silent for too long as his fist lashed out and connected with my shoulder, hard. I bit back my yelp as my own hand flew to the injured spot, rubbing it tenderly. That would definitely bruise later, I thought wincing slightly.
"I was trying to avoid some girls," I half-lied. Jasper; I wanted to tell him everything, but I couldn't let him know because of James. He meant more to me than anything and I didn't want him hurt, he probably didn't even like me though. I sighed longingly.
James grunted and I had a silent prayer that he had lost interest in me for tonight. My prayers must have been lost for when I tried to sneak quietly up into my room, I heard his voice sneering behind me. "Where do you think you're going?" he asked, a sadistic grin marring his features, "You didn't think you'd get away without, did ya?"
I gulped heavily as I hesitated, standing on the bottom step with my foot raised to step to the next one. "Are you going to come, or do I have to go get you?" he questioned almost casually, one brow lifted as he stared at me intensely.
Somehow, I couldn't force myself to move, either to get away from him or to move towards him. He apparently didn't like this as he let out a resigned sigh took a step closer to me, stopping an unthreatening distance and keeping his gaze fixed on his prey.
I watched him, bewildered and suspicious, wondering what he was up to. He abruptly slunk into a crouch and launched himself at me, smacking me backwards and encasing his strong arms around my tender frame.
My alarmed cry was lost as his hot, broad hand clamped firmly on my mouth, silencing me immediately. I knew more pain was coming now, but he had evidently decided to change his tactics; I had no idea what to expect.
A whimper rolled up my throat to be muffled against his palm, eliciting a smirk filled with his perverse pleasure. "Now," he whispered, leaning so close to my ear that his moist breath blew over my cheeks, making me gag, "I have a new tool I want to try out".
The hand not closing my mouth released me and reached back to his pocket. My eyes widened as he slowly brought it back into view, revealing a sharp blade, glinting in the shaft of light that happened to be streaming into the darkened house.
"Let's have some fun shall we," he chuckled darkly. It was the glint of pure evil in his eyes that finally broke my self restraint as I started to thrash and scream as much as I could. The cool touch of the blade stroked my skin, softly, lovingly.
But then the touch turned icy and biting and sharp pain flashed through my arm. My eyes tightly closed so all I could see was the dark; forever the dark, my sanctuary.
I was in pain. Not physical, no, though it was strong enough to be. A week had gone by since I had spoken to my Alice outside the cafeteria that time. One torturous week and we had not spoken since.
I had been forced to watch as my angel became even shyer and more withdrawn than she was before she had come here with each day that passed.
The day after I had talked to her, I waited to meet her in the morning, making sure to stay out of sight of her brother; I wouldn't risk not being able to control myself if I saw him again. She nearly walked right past me, so when I suddenly fell into step with her she jumped a mile high.
She ignored my attempts to start conversation with her instead going on pretending like had never seen me in the first place even though I knew full well she had. I was clueless as to what had changed. The last time we had spoken we seemed to be alright and I know that's not just me misinterpreting signals.
Right now, I was once again sat with my sister and friends in the cafeteria, not paying any attention to any of them, choosing instead to stare across the room and watch Alice. She had just arrived and sat quietly at her table, alone and kept her gaze down at her half-full tray.
Only once did she look my way, only to look away in the next instant, but it was enough that I could feel her pain. She was hurting, in part because of our separation, perhaps, but there was something else. Something that I was almost certain had something and everything to do with her brother.
I made a note that I would try to talk to her after class today, screw Gym, this was so much more important, especially to me. When the bell went, Edward pulled me to the side, waving the others away.
"What's going on with you?" he asked quietly, frowning slightly. Edward had always been perceptive, almost as though he could read our minds, but that was ridiculous. I sighed, but he cut me off as I opened my mouth. "And don't say 'nothing'".
He stared at me sternly. It was a look I knew meant that he was going to get the information out of me one way or another. "Okay, okay, fine," I sighed, "I'm worried about Alice. I'm sure there's something going on". It felt better to admit my thought aloud than I had imagined.
The crease in his brow deepened and his eyes slid sideways to where I spotted Alice slipping smoothly out through the double doors. Slowly, he nodded. "I have noticed something strange with her," he agreed, "She's quieter, keeps to herself more". He looked back at me. "Did something happen between you two?" he asked, "Is that why I haven't seen you speaking with her since last week?"
"No," I closed my eyes, suddenly feeling exhausted. "I don't know what happened," I explained, "One minute I was talking to her, the next day she shows up and completely ignores me. The only conclusion I can find is someone said something to her".
Edward's eyebrows rose in shock. "Who would do that and why?" he asked, incredulously.
My lips pressed grimly into a straight line as I forced myself to voice my accusations. "I think it's her brother," I said, "I caught them having some sort of argument. He was shouting at her, hitting things. She was scared".
"That's a serious accusation," he murmured barely audibly.
"You don't think I know that?" I burst out exasperatedly. I ran a hand through my hair, tugging at it as if that might relieve some of my stress.
"The question is what are you going to do about it?" I had no answer to that and he saw it. He looked at me sympathetically. I imagined that he was thinking what it would be like with the situation in reverse and obviously he didn't like it. "Maybe you could talk to her again," he suggested, "If she tells us what's happening, we can press charges. Carlisle will be more than capable as a doctor to help us with that".
It didn't escape my notice that he had included Alice into our little group as he spoke and as he offered his adopted father's help. I smiled at him gratefully. "Thanks, bro," I patted his shoulder.
He grinned back at me. "No problem," he said, "Now, go get your girl".
I laughed; the weight lifting from my shoulder now that I had a path to take. But I wasn't an idiot, I knew it could be a difficult task getting Alice to open up, but at least I had a goal, a target to aim for.
It had been killing me to avoid Jasper when I wanted nothing more than to do the exact opposite and devote every hour of my attention to him. Every day, when I'd catch him watching me, I'd see the pain in his eyes and know that he felt it too and I was miserable.
I didn't want to hurt him and I hated myself every second for putting him through this. And just when I would decide to give it all up and go and talk to him I'd remember what James had told to me that night…
"Now, you listen to me," he hissed into my ear. My eyes were closed, trying to block out his words and his strong fingers gripping me tightly, pressing hard into the soft skin of my wrists. "I don't want you to talk to the boy ever again".
I futilely attempted to open my mouth and argue but he shut me up with a sharp slap around the face. "Don't even try to deny it; I saw the way he looked at you in parking lot," he insisted.
"So, you don't speak to him, you don't even look at him ever again," he commanded. One hand came up to grasp my chin, turning it roughly to face him. "Look at me and promise".
Desperately, I shook my head. Jasper was different, he meant something more and I didn't want to give up on that. "Say it!" My head was pushed back into something hard with enough force to make me dizzy.
"I promise," I whispered hoarsely, my heart tearing in my chest.
I sighed, my gaze coming back to my tray of food that was suddenly unappealing. Unable to resist the temptation I glanced up towards Jasper's table. I saw all of his friends conversing quietly together.
But when I finally looked at him, I found him watching me in turn. His sharp blue eyes meeting mine for a brief second before I broke contact. I shouldn't have looked, I thought as I felt the pain flare again. I needed to be able to explain it to him but I couldn't without James somehow finding out.
When the bell went I stood and dumped my tray, keeping my head ducked down and hurried off to history. This was the worst subject, when I was forced to sit next to him for a whole hour. Though it was still pleasurable to be close enough that I could smell his rich scent, it also made it nearly impossible to ignore him.
Our table was empty by the time I reached it, so I gladly took a minute to collect myself and steel myself against giving in to temptation. I had a feeling that something was going to change today, but the outcome was uncertain. I should have expected it, for our relationship couldn't continue to balance on the edge of knife; eventually we had to fall off one way or another.
Jasper arrived shortly before the teacher did and sat down silently. This made me nervous. Usually he would at least smile at me and say hello in an attempt to get me out of the inexplicable silent treatment I had been giving him.
Had he given up? I didn't like to think that he had, but I couldn't blame him. I mean there's only so much effort one would go through in order to attract a girl's attention and I was hardly worth it with all my baggage. I felt a pang in my heart at that and I tried to ignore that as well.
By the time the class had ended, I realised that I had been so distracted that I had not taken in a single thing the teacher had told us. I didn't even know what the topic we were learning about was.
From the frustrated look on Jasper's face, I guessed he hadn't fared any better. He hadn't looked up at me yet, so as I turned to leave I was surprised to feel his hand lightly touch my arm. Thankfully it was the uninjured one.
Cautiously, I looked up at him, almost fearing what I would see there. His eyes held pain and sadness, but underlying that I was sure there was determination and even hope.
"Can I talk to you for a second?" he asked in a quiet, hopeful voice.
I nodded hesitantly and gasped softly when he took my hand in his and began to gently pull my along after him. He stopped once we were out in the hallway, which was fast emptying out, and turned me so my back was pressed against the wall.
I knew he wouldn't hurt me, but I was worried about what he was going to say; if he had somehow figured it out. "Alice, please, you need to talk to me," he practically begged me, his eyes screaming his desperation and pain.
My eyes darted nervously around the now empty corridor. "We need to get to class, Jasper," I said, my voice sounding strangely monotone, even to my own ears.
"Alice," he called, as I walked around him to escape, "Please talk to me, I want to help. Please". I continued walking away despite the searing pain in my chest to do so until he came up behind me.
It happened too quickly for me to avoid it. His hand reached out to grab me, stop me from leaving so he could talk, but his hand gripped my injured arm and even that light pressure caused me to gasp and wince as the wounds throbbed.
Jasper's eyes widened when he took in my expression and he snatched his hand back as though he had been burned. I tried to make a run for it while he was in shock, but no sooner had I turned away than I was pulled back, gently, by his hand on my shoulder.
"What happened, Alice?" he whispered in fear.
I stared at him blankly. "Nothing happened," I told him slowly, hoping he would just leave it at that, but he didn't.
"Please, Alice, you're hurt," he whispered again, his voice coming out strangled, "Let me help you, Edward's father is a doctor, let him see you. Please".
"Why would you even bother?" I snapped, harsher than I meant too and he winced.
"Because I care about you," he whispered, staring pleadingly into my eyes. I was stunned, momentarily dazed and he took the opportunity to step closer to me, standing right in front of me, close enough for me to feel the heat of his body.
"You…do?" I stuttered.
He took my hand and lifted it, pulling the sleeve back and then staring at the white bandaging that I had put on where James had sliced me. He looked suddenly furious and I stepped back in shock at his abrupt change.
"Who did that?" he demanded, his hands clenching in anger and eyes blazing with his fury. I knew without a doubt that he would seek revenge. "Was it your brother?" he asked again, watching me closely. I was shocked that he had guessed it so quickly. He obviously remembered our argument in the parking lot. "It was, wasn't it?"
"James wouldn't…" I protested weakly. I was lying and he knew it too. I wasn't expecting for him to freeze upon hearing that name, though.
"James Brandon?" his eyes went wide again and I saw in his face a flicker of fear and remembrance?
"That is my last name," I joked shakily.
He smacked his head and cursed loudly. "Of course it would be that jackass," he kept mumbling to himself as he began pacing restlessly. He stopped and looked at me. "I will sort this, Alice, I promise," and he kissed me on the forehead and left.
I was left staring after him, like our first meeting in reverse. Fear filled me. He couldn't interfere; he would get hurt. I skipped my last class and sat outside, waiting…
Crap!! I couldn't believe this, why hadn't I seen it before? Of course Alice wasn't okay, I had seen that and it had taken me this long to get the courage to confront her about it. I should have done something sooner. Now, I needed to find Em and Edward.
I was too worked up to go to Gym, so I waited outside and ambushed Edward and Emmett when I saw them come round the corner after school. "Guys, I need to talk to you," I rushed through my words.
"Chill, man," Emmett smirked but I glared at him until he saw the seriousness on my face and shut up.
Edward was looking at me concerned. "What happened, Jazz?" he asked.
"I spoke to Alice just like you said to," I started, shooting Emmett another black look when he opened his mouth for the perverted comment I knew he was dying to make, but I needed him to be serious!
"What did she say?"
I ran a hand through my hair in distress. "She didn't say anything exactly," I mumbled, "But she's hurt, she's got this bandage on her arm and I don't even want to think about what caused it. I asked if it was her brother…she tried to lie, but she can't lie".
"There isn't evidence," Edward said again.
"I know, but I know it's him," I ranted, "Do you know who her brother is? Did you see the connection?" They shook their heads, looking confused and concerned. "Her brother is James. James Brandon, does that ring any bells?"
They both realised at the same time and their eyes widened in alarm. "Yeah, exactly," I said grimly.
"That jerk is her brother?" Emmett asked incredulously.
"Where is Alice now?" Edward asked, trying to keep us on track with this conversation. "I suppose James would be picking her up after school, right? What about her father?"
"Um…I left Alice outside our history class…I don't know where she went after that," I answered, feeling disgraceful that I had just walked off and left her like that. "I don't know about her father, she never mentioned him".
"We need to talk to my Dad," Edward decided then quirked an eyebrow at me, "You alright to come over to my house right now?"
"Sure," I smiled tensely and nodded to them before going to my car.
The Cullen mansion was always one of our favourite hang out places, it was large enough that we could do whatever we wanted and his parents were lenient enough to let us, within reason.
I arrived after Edward and Emmett, pulling up the drive behind Edward's silver Volvo. Edward wasted no time letting us into the house and immediately calling for his dad.
"What is it, Edward?" Carlisle asked, frowning as he took in our sudden and frantic appearance outside his office.
"We want to report a suspected abuse," he said strongly, meeting his father's gaze straight on.
"Really?" his eyebrows rose so far in shock that I feared they may disappear into his hairline. "Who is it?" he asked, "Do you have any proof?"
"It's Alice Brandon, sir," I said, taking a step forward and staring at him desperately, "I don't have any evidence as such, sir, but I'm sure. I know it, I can feel it".
Carlisle watched the three of us speculatively and turned to look sadly at me. "I'm sorry, Jasper. You know I can't do anything officially unless you have some kind of evidence to back up your accusation".
My shoulders slumped in defeat and I stared dejectedly down at the plush carpet. "She had her arm bandaged; did you hear anything about that at the hospital?" Edward asked hopefully.
He shook his head. "She's the new girl, right? No, I haven't seen her around the hospital, but I could find out for you if you like," he offered.
"It could be too late by then," I moaned in despair. A firm hand clamped on my shoulder and I looked up to see Emmett standing next to me, frowning.
"Just because Doc here can't do anything, doesn't mean we can't look into it ourselves," he said, casting a glance back to Carlisle who simply shrugged and said he wouldn't do anything to stop us if we decided to act on our own.
I smiled gratefully at him and Edward stepped up to us as well. "I know where they live, so let's go and check it out," he advised, already grabbing his car keys.
"A 'right, let's go," Emmett boomed and set out from the door.
Jasper knew. Jasper knew and I had no idea what he was going to do. After he had rushed off saying that he was going to sort 'this', I had decided to skip my last lesson; I was too sick with worry to sit through an entire hour of English.
The main concern was not to let James find out about this. Not the easiest thing to do since James always had a special knack for figuring things out. He would probably take one look at me and realise that something was off.
I couldn't let that happen, but I couldn't avoid him either; that would definitely make him mad. Maybe, if I could stay out of his way enough tonight, I might be able to speak to Jasper in the morning and get him to leave it alone.
So, when James' car pulled up in the lot I got in and sat still and quiet for the drive home. My brother's stony silence beside me was even more unnerving than when he was actually talking to me in a reasonably civilised manor.
Something was off. His stillness and the cold exuding from him told me that. I didn't know what had happened, but an uneasy feeling settled in me causing goose-bumps to rise on my skin and my stomach to clench.
He still didn't speak as we entered the house and I kept my gaze off of him, instead staring at my designer trainers and using the toe to lazily draw patterns on the wooden floorboards beneath my feet.
I stepped quickly to the side as the door was closed, slamming with enough force to knock the vase that had been sat on the table behind it off and cause it to smash as it impacted with the ground. I winced at the loud noise but James didn't even seem to notice it.
He was standing with his back to me, facing the door we had come through and his chest was heaving with each deep breath he took. Slowly, I backed away. I knew my brother's behaviour well enough that I could see all the signs that he was completely furious and figured it was safer to be elsewhere.
"Where do you think you're going?" James' flat voice asked; deceptively calm. I didn't have a chance to answer before he had spun around and roughly shoved me backwards, yelling, "Where the fuck, do you think you're going?!"
Terrified, I scuttled away as he loomed towards me, dragging myself through the splinters of the vase. His foot lashed out, landing hard on my stomach. I gasped and curled in on myself, trying in vain. Another hit, my ribs this time.
It didn't take me long to realise he was going too far this time. He always stopped before he did too much, that might get him caught. But I knew he wasn't stopping this time.
I coughed and my eyes widened as I saw a patch of spattered blood cover the floor. I couldn't hold on any longer; it hurt too much.
Even as I lost consciousness, though, a loud bang and a feral snarl from an angel's mouth snagged at the edge of my hearing and then I was gone.
"We have to go in," I muttered again.
"No," Edward said sternly, "We can't just barge in. We need to wait and see if anything actually does happen". I knew that, but it didn't make waiting any easier.
We were currently crouching in some bushes outside Alice's house, spying with a pair of binoculars that Emmett had managed to find from God knows where. If it hadn't been for my suspicions I would have considered his seriously wrong. Not just spying, but betraying Alice's confidence like that.
But if there was something going on, it had to be found out and we and to help her. "Can you see anything?" I murmured to Emmett.
"Nothing more then when you last asked, 10 seconds ago," Emmett grumbled back, irritated by my lack of patience.
"I know, I'm sorry," I sighed and rubbed a hand over my eyes. I was so tired it was unbelievable. I hadn't slept properly since Alice had started ignoring me and with what I had found today, I was completely stressed out.
Emmett looked at me sympathetically. "Hey, just chill out, man," he said, resting one strong hand on my shoulder, "Everything will turn out fine".
I smiled and tried to believe that what he just said was the truth, but I just had a feeling that maybe it wasn't quite that simple. A sharp scream snapped all of our attentions back to the house as we started in surprise.
"Shit!" I heard Emmett exclaim, but I was already gone, racing to the door before I had even registered that I was moving. I was vaguely aware that they were following, but I didn't have the time to stop and wait for them; I needed to get to her now.
I hit the door with full force, turning at the last minute to use my shoulder as a battering ram. The rebound nearly sent me sprawling, but the door was looser now. With a harsh kick, it flung open and I revealed a scene I never want to see again for the rest of my life.
Alice was lying on the floor, unconscious and blood surrounding her and James was frozen in brief shock above her, his foot still poised to strike. An enraged sound escaped my mouth, sounding so raw that I didn't even recognise it and then I was flying at him.
He recovered in time to try and move out of the way, but I was already there and my fist flew into his face making him stumble back. James blinked again and suddenly fixed on me, filling with hate.
Emmett arrived then and tackled him, pinning him to the ground with his much greater weight. As he struggled, I was stunned to see Edward hit him so hard that he was actually knocked out.
Then I remember Alice.
She was still lying there, so still, not a single movement but I could just make out the rhythm of her breathing. "Alice," I whispered, anguished. I knelt by her side and looked her over. I could see the bruises on her cheek bones already starting to form and there was blood on her face.
Ever so gently, I reached out to brush some of her dark hair back from her forehead.
I felt more than heard as Edward perched beside me, a concerned look in his eye. "I called 911, the police and an ambulance should be here soon," he said.
"Thank you," I mumbled, not turning away from the angel in front of me. I bent down so I could speak directly into her ear. "Alice, can you hear me?" I called gently, "Can you open your eyes?"
There was no response and I bit my lip to hold in the tears that wanted to flow and the tight lump now stuck in my throat. "The paramedics are here," Emmett called and we heard him open the door followed by the low murmurings of more people.
A woman squatted next to me and said, with a kind and open face, "Let us take care of her now, honey". And then she was being taken away, lifted onto a stretcher and loaded into the ambulance.
I stared blankly, watching as they bustled around, until the woman interrupted my thoughts again. "Would you like to come with her?" The question was so innocent, held no accusation or prying. Just a question. And unlike before, this one I knew the answer to.
Carlisle had met us at the hospital as soon as we arrived; apparently Edward had called him before we left the house. I was forced from the room as the nurses swarmed around Carlisle and he was dishing out instructions here and there.
When I was finally aloud to see her, I just sat there, unable to escape her beauty and relishing in the fact I was still able to enjoy it. She had a broken rib and some severe bruising as well as a few cuts, but nothing major. She would recover.
James had been taken away by the police under the watchful eyes of Edward and Emmett who had stayed behind as the ambulance pulled away with me and Alice inside. They had come by the hospital and waited with me for news of Alice, but left shortly after we had been aloud to see her.
Now, I was sitting here, desperately waiting for her to wake up. There was something I had to tell her and it couldn't wait any longer.
Her father had been by to see her. He had been on a business trip for a couple of weeks and had left Alice in the care of her brother, unaware of exactly what that care was. Not surprisingly then, that he was absolutely distraught when he had discovered what had been going on under his own roof.
The door pushed open and I looked up to see Carlisle standing there, a chart already in his hand. "She should be awake sometime soon," he said, "She's been taken off of the sedative now that he ribs have had a chance to begin healing".
I nodded, relieved and hopeful at the prospect of her being awake again. So intent was I in watching her that I didn't eve notice when he quietly let himself out of the room.
My body felt heavy and my mind was dark and foggy. I didn't know where I was and suddenly I was afraid of what James may have done. I tried to remember what had happened.
I remembered James and I remembered the pain. But then there was something else, my angel coming to my rescue. Jasper had found me. Where was he now? Did he get hurt by my brother?
I struggled to pull myself into consciousness and became aware of the sound of someone talking quietly. I didn't know one of the voices, but the other one was unmistakable. Jasper was here and I needed to find him.
Footsteps receded, but I could feel Jasper's presence still sitting beside me. How long had he been there? I could hear more noise now and I could feel the weight on my body lifting.
Slowly, I moved one of my hands, testing. The instant I completely the movement, I found my had engulfed in another, larger and warmer one. "Alice?" a voice whispered with trepidation.
I tried to talk but my mouth didn't seem to want to cooperate. Finally, though, some sound escaped me. "Jas-per," I managed to gargle out. I hoped her understood what I was trying to say.
"Oh, Alice," he said in a relieved tone, "Can you open your eyes, sweetheart?"
And I did, slowly and with much effort, but I did it for him. He was sat in an uncomfortable looking plastic chair and a broad grin spread on his face, but concern was still lingering in his eyes. He had been worried for me.
Tentatively, I smiled back; simply happy to see him, but it quickly fell when I remembered again. "James?" I whispered fearfully.
"Don't worry about him; you never have to worry about him again," he said forcefully, his fingers tightening around my hand.
I considered that. James was gone I assumed he had been arrested. I was free now. And I knew exactly who was responsible for that.
"Thank you, Jasper," I whispered gratefully, staring at him and meeting his piercing blue gaze.
He grinned at me. "You're more than welcome," he stared back for a minute, serious now and it looked like he was deciding something. "I love you, you know," he said it was obvious in the way he was looking at me that he did.
I was shocked, but more than that I was delighted and I realised that I loved him too. Since that first day I had seen him. The fact that of anyone else, he was the one I even remotely let close was proof of that.
"I love you too," I answered and his face lit up with brightest smile I had ever seen him give. He could blind an angel with that smile, but I suppose he already has.
Author's Note: This was for the Write For The Other Team Contest. Hope you guys liked it, please check out the C2, link on my profile. You can read the others that were entered, please vote for your favourite. (Voting runs 24th Jan till 29th Jan). Looking forward to seeing what you thought of my first Alice/Jasper fic ;D. Here's the vote link: www[dot]fanfiction[dot]net/~writefortheotherteam# Please, go and vote!! ;D