A/N: When Betham bid on us, there was a snafu with the auction and she graciously gave twice for the Fandom Gives Back, rather than trying to make things harder on anyone. For her generosity, and her kindness in general, we decided to give her double the fun.
Betham, we hope you'll enjoy a peek into Alice and Edward's minds from "I Do," and that these drabbles serve to sate your curiosity on how they handled the situation.
Thank you again for bidding on us.
We still don't own; we just like to mess with the characters.
Special thanks to kimberlycullen10 for her feedback!
I don't know how to say this, but I didn't want you to find out through the grapevine. You deserve better than that. I wasn't sure if I could do this over the phone, so I just wanted to say sorry up front. I realize this is a cowardly way to do it.
Bella and I... we're dating now...
My hands tremble as I read and reread the letter from Jasper.
I'm not even sure what I'm feeling right in this moment – it's as if everything has simply gone... static.
We broke up a while ago, but still...
The spike of jealousy I feel at learning my best friend and my ex are together takes me by surprise.
A part of me wonders how long this has been going on, if this is the real reason Jasper and I – and Bella and Edward – broke up.
As soon as the thought enters my mind, I dismiss it.
That isn't Jasper.
I sit back, leaning my head against the wall as I try to get myself under control.
Strange, how that works... we haven't been together for almost a year, but he was still mine, in a way.
My phone rings. I close my eyes as Edward's name flashes on the screen. Taking a deep breath, I answer.
"Hey, Edward. How are you holding up?"
I try to keep my voice devoid of my raw emotions, unsure if he's aware of the change in status between Bella and Jasper.
Normally, he would've been able to tell something was up at once, but he's too preoccupied himself. He's started seeing a counselor, and the visits take their toll on him.
He's going in hopes of winning Bella back. Suddenly the pang I feel isn't for me, but for him.
It's been a month since the letter.
This is my first trip home after getting it. I'm hesitant as I stand on their porch.
Part of me isn't certain of the welcome I'll receive. Things have changed so much.
Then there's seeing them for the first time.
As a couple.
I mutter, "Put your big girl panties on already, Alice Cullen. You can do this. You need to do this. They're your friends."
Gathering my nerve, I take a deep breath and knock on the door.
Bella answers. For a moment things are awkward, until she hugs me tight.
Jasper stands behind her, looking both worried and happy.
I smile tentatively, stepping up to him with open arms.
He folds me into a hug and sighs, whispering softly in my ear, "Thanks, Ali."
I pat his back gingerly, murmuring my own thanks.
As the day progresses, I see.
I see the light in Bella's eyes again - the self-assurance present in her that didn't exist with Edward.
I see the adoration in Jasper's gaze as he watches her.
It stings, but if it'd been anything less, he'd have had to answer to me.
I catch his eye and nod, smiling.
"How could you do this to me, J? You were supposed to be my friend!"
"I still am your friend, Ed."
I snort; my fingers clenched in my hair as I tug the strands in frustration.
A deep sigh on the other end of the line makes me want to punch something - to punch him.
"Why Bella, man? You know..." My voice breaks. "You know how I feel about her, Jasper. Now she'll never..."
I couldn't finish. It hurt too much - it was like losing her all over again, but worse.
"I'm sorry, Ed. I never meant..."
Weeks go by before I'm able to even talk about my best friend and my ex-girlfriend to my counselor, Eleazar.
Even so, I have to practically force myself to think of them in those terms, because I don't want to.
The urge to cast Jasper out is strong, but doing so would make me lose them both – and I can't let Bella go.
Eleazar helps me to come to terms – slowly – with everything, letting me work through the sense of loss I feel.
With his help, I learn to look past the sense of betrayal, to move forward.
"Alice? H-how is she? Is she happy?"
She's just been to visit them for the first time and needed to talk to someone who'd understand.
I can't make myself look up as I ask what I'm not sure I want to know – but I need to.
Instead, I draw figure-eights on my jeans.
Alice's hand on my knee makes me look up to see her smile, her eyes both happy and sad as she tells me they both looked happier than she's ever seen them.
She assures me he's treating her right.
Swallowing hard, I nod.
My voice cracks. "Good."
It's taken a lot of work and so many hours of talking to Eleazar – about Jasper, Bella, what happened to my parents, everything – but I'm finally starting to gain a sense of peace in my life.
I understand now why I was stuck repeating the same patterns with Bella over and over again, even though I knew they were wrong.
It's hard to change, but I want to – I have to. I can't bear the thought of going through this heartache again, if I'm ever lucky enough to fall in love a second time.
Bella's assured me that I will.
I'm all but running out of Eleazar's office, acknowledging his secretary's "Have a nice weekend, Edward!" with a wave.
I'll have to hustle if I'm going to meet the guys on time. Eleazar'd been running late, and now I am, too.
Glancing at my watch, I round the corner of the corridor, running into someone.
I see red curls, sparkling green eyes, a frown turning into a look of awe, then a smile.
I splutter, "God, I'm so sorry! Are you okay?"
She nods. "Aye, but I'd be better over coffee."
Suddenly, life seems to fall into place.
A/N: We are proud to be a part of Fandom For Preemies, a cause that is near and dear to both of us for various reasons. This drive is similar to the Haiti and Tennessee ones in that you make a donation and receive a compilation of stories from all sorts of authors. Please visit http:/fandomforpreemies(dot)blogspot(dot)com/ and take part!