A/N: This is one of those spur-of-the-moment stories that appears and just sits right on your keyboard and stares you down until you write it, and is also my first foray into the land of Alice, so I sincerely hope it's up to par ;)
What about Alice? Contest
Title: Steady As She Goes
Disclaimer: All recognizable characters and events are the property of Ms. Stephenie Meyer. I am only taking them out for a brief stroll.
Summary: Reality is a very fluid thing when one doesn't live entirely in the present. A stolen moment between Alice & Jasper, canon, one-shot.
To see all the stories that are a part of this contest please visit:www .fanfiction-challenges. blogspot. Com
Steady As She Goes
She forgets things sometimes.
Or, not forgets, because a vampire does not forget things, but she does sometimes have difficulty remembering which when she is in, what has or hasn't or will happen. She is waking up in the dark, alone, and then she is standing at Bella's wedding, and then it's 1950 and she's waiting in the rain to see Jasper's face for the first time, and it's all very confusing.
That's why they put her in the asylum in the first place. It wasn't because of her visions, it was because her visions were making her crazy. Even now, they sometimes beat at the walls of her sanity, tossing her to and fro in the timestream like a ship hopelessly lost at sea.
Jasper's hand closes around hers, sending a wave of calm rippling around her, and for a moment she can't tell if he just did that, or if it was ten years ago, or if he's about to, the decision only just crystallizing in his mind.
He squeezes her fingers and the calm intensifies. "It's okay. I'm right here. I'll always be right here."
She lets out a long, shuddering breath, and the visions fade a little, Jasper's voice beginning to penetrate the storm in her mind. His long fingers intertwining with hers are an anchor, her one ever-present, unchangeable constant.
For just one instant, she is stalking her first human on her first dark night, utterly alone, and then she remembers that it doesn't matter, because she knows she will not eat humans and she knows she will have Jasper so all she has to do is blink and she is somewhere else, somewhen else, holding Jasper's hand again.
"It's worse tonight," she breathes, and part of her means the bloodlust because she is still a newborn vampire, while another part means how badly she wants to speak to Bella and finally become friends with her, but mostly, as always, she means the storm and the sense of spinning, falling, flying in her own head that she will never become accustomed to.
"I know, love," he answers, and it doesn't matter when they are, whether they are driving to Arizona or visiting Denali or fleeing from the Volturi's wrath, just as long as he is here with her.
She opens her eyes and counts the scars on his face, somehow more there than she expected and yet also fewer – some battles they haven't yet fought, some they have. He is like a calendar, a steadily progressing timeline of what has or hasn't happened to him, to her, to them.
Jasper smiles down at her, his other hand ruffling her hair gently. "Any better?" His words carry all his love for her, the peace he wishes for her, the security he promises her, and the joy he feels at being near her. It is a symphony composed for her alone, more beautiful than voice or instrument could ever produce, more holy than the very choirs of heaven, and powerful as a messiah standing at the bow of a ship, his steady hands outstretched to calm the waves, his gentle voice quieting the winds that would topple them and drown them in the deep.
"Yes," she replies, returning his smile and cloaking herself in his love, his protection. When she closes her eyes again, the storm rages anew, or tries to – Jasper's voice is quick to cut through the confusion, the chaos brought on as multiple times and events and places try to assert themselves in her consciousness.
"Steady, love," he murmurs, holding her tighter. "I've got you."
"Still?" she asks, and doesn't open her eyes, instead letting the visions wash over her and carry her into the future – because as far as her mind can see, as far as the future extends out in front of them, she has still never found a time when he isn't there.
"Always," he says, kissing her hair, and the future echoes his promise.
"Good," Alice smiles. She snuggles closer to him, her anchor, her constant, and is at peace.