Denver Paranormal Society
AN: A reminder, Alice experiences a person's life when she touches someone, skin to skin. If she touches something that can happen, too, but most of the time, it's the last memory associated with the object.
Inside, I was screaming; outside, I stared at Alice in horror. Her eyes rolled back in her head, her body stiffening, memories, good and bad assaulted her. There were images along with Garrett's emotions at the time of each memory. I had experienced a lot of horrible things through the spirits I had come across, and I could only imagine her torment.
Edward was at Alice's side instantly, carefully handling her. He didn't want for her to suffer further from his touch. Her chair toppled over as he pulled her into his arms. That had me jumping out of mine, as I grabbed our things. Ignoring the curious looks and shouts from the people around us, I was on Edward's heels.
I stopped in my tracks, darting back to our table for the tiny bit of fluff from Garrett's wings. From the examination Benjamin had done on one of Jacob's, it was not a normal feather. I didn't want some curious biology student to find it. How would Edward and I be able to explain that?
Edward ran ahead toward his office, the parking lot much too far. Thankfully, we were only around the corner from the building. As he settled Alice on a small love seat a minute later, I locked the door behind me and drew the shades. Though the hallway looked empty, it was best to be safe from curious eyes. I had a feeling we'd get a visit from someone soon enough.
"Her episodes have never lasted this long," he stated as he slipped on his gloves. He started to check Alice's vitals. He was being as gentle and careful as he could with her. His concern was evident in the deep frown on his handsome face.
"That was Garrett's feather," I said softly, drawing his tortured gaze. Was that what he looked like whenever I was in trouble? "She saw his life, including Hayley's death, his own, and Edward." His eyes closed as gasp of pain escaped. "He was in hell. I don't know how long he was there, but I would think that even a second would feel like eternity."
"Oh God," he groaned, running a hand through his hair before removing his gloves again. "Is she going to be all right?"
I shook my head and shrugged at the same time, at a loss for words. My hands fidgeted at my sides as he stared at me as if I had all the answers. But I didn't. He'd known Alice longer than I had, and I knew he was only worried about her. Her gift was hard to grow accustomed to, and I knew after spending so much time with Jasper, that she probably had gotten used to taking off her gloves while she ate.
"We need to call Jasper," I blurted out. "He's the only one that can provide her real comfort and that's what she needs."
"You call him, I need to see if my TA can take over my next class before someone comes to my office to look for me," he stated, looking at his wristwatch. "Stay here, and if someone comes, just get rid of them."
I nodded, pulling out my cell phone. My gaze landed on Alice again. She looked as if she was only sleeping, except for the tears that leaked out of her eyes and their rapid movement beneath her lids.
Was she reliving Garrett's life or death? Either one would be hard to endure.
"He's going to be so mad," I whispered as I waited for Jasper to answer.
Mad was an understatement. Jasper was furious, especially when he couldn't wake her up. "She needs a hospital," he hissed angrily at me. His blond mane of hair was tied at the back of his neck, a few strands loosening from the leather strip. Blue eyes, bright from his tears of anger and worry bored into mine.
"Easy there," Edward stated firmly, standing between me and Jasper. "She's not at fault here. Jasper, don't take it out on my wife."
"If we take her to the hospital, it may be worse," I tried to reason with him from behind Edward's protective stance.
"Gloves! They wear fucking gloves."
I shook my head, because sometimes they didn't when there was no blood or bodily fluids. I'd seen it happen.
"No, Jasper. We can't ris—"
"I may be able to help," a firm voice said from behind us. It surprised us all, but Jasper cried out and fell back against Alice and the love seat. But he jumped right back up and stepped right into Garrett's personal space.
In life, Garrett was as tall as Jasper, but in death, he was much taller. One thing I noticed right away was that his wings were not visible, even to me this time.
"You! Help? You're the reason she's like this."
"I am sorry," Garrett said with that controlled calm he had, even in life. "It wasn't my intention." He sighed, looking as intimidating as usual. Even as a ghost, he was attention grabbing with his slightly long hair, scruff and rich voice. As an angel, he was downright lethal. "I'm still learning, and when I transport, I sometimes leave feathers behind."
"I don't give a fuck if you shed a million damn feathers. Fix my girlfriend!"
"I can't touch her, sir," Garrett said simply.
"Then how do you purpose to help?" Jasper mocked angrily.
"Bella would bridge my power to you."
"What?" Edward asked, clearly as confused as I was.
"I can't touch her, either, Garrett," I stated. "If I do, it'll just make her worse." There were some things that I didn't even remember, including the night my mother was killed. Alice would see it all and that was not an option, even if I wanted to know exactly what happened that night.
"You'll be the bridge between Mr. Whitlock and me. I'll provide the healing energy through you, and he will touch her since he doesn't affect her as the rest of us would."
"Absolutely not," Edward hissed, pulling me into his arms. "You're asking too much." I felt the tension and fear moving through his body. It was in his voice and his hold.
"She'll be fine, Edward."
Edward glared at Garrett, a look I hoped never to see again. "You said that before."
"Edward, man, I wouldn't ever ask you to put Bella at risk. She's my friend, too. But this may be the only way to help Ali."
Edward's eyes softened, and I knew that to him, it was a no win situation.
"What exactly are you doing?" I asked, wincing when Edward's hold tightened.
"Removing the memories," Garrett replied. "I am responsible for what happened to her. I know it's a lot to ask."
"It is, you have no idea," Edward murmured, pressing a kiss to my temple. He took a deep breath and stepped back, releasing me. "I will pull her away the second I see it's too much. I'm sorry, but…"
Garrett nodded and turned toward me. "Mr. Whitlock, please take Alice's hand." Jasper knelt by the couch, taking her hand gently in his. I moved toward him, ready to take his other one. Garrett delivered me a small smile but asked for Edward to bring me a chair. I sat and waited as the angel placed his hand on my shoulder.
Immediately, I felt a difference. Warmth seemed to radiate from his hand, arcing over my skin and hitting every nerve in my body. It was hard to explain how if felt, like a warm shot of whiskey or that first hit of hot chocolate on a cold day.
"How does it feel?" Edward asked. His concern for me was clear in his voice, in his eyes again. I'm sorry, baby, I wanted to tell him.
"Come here, Edward, please," Garrett said, smiling down at me. Confused, Edward approached carefully, his eyes trained on me, too. "This is all she'll feel while I help Alice." He held out his hand for my husband, who stepped closer, allowing Garrett to place it on his shoulder.
Immediately, Edward's eyes widened as he held our gaze. "That's all?"
"That will be all," Garrett assured him as his hand dropped. "I'll specifically tune the energy for Alice."
Before we could proceed, Alice screamed in her sleep. Garrett closed his eyes, murmuring under his breath and within a second, I felt an invisible something move through the room.
"What was that?" Edward asked, dropping onto his knees in front of me.
"I put a spell around the room, no one can hear what's happening," Garrett replied. "Let's get moving. There are a few concerned people probably heading this way. You got a lot of attention at the restaurant."
I sighed. "Let's get started."
"Hurry," Jasper murmured, now holding Alice in his arms and lap. She was trembling so hard. Hold on, Alice.
"Don't touch her, Edward," Garrett stated firmly. "I know you'll want to, please don't. You'll break her concentration, which will do the same to me."
Edward nodded, turning to look at me again. "I'm here, all right. I'm here if you feel you need to pull out." The protests from Jasper and Garrett died at their lips at the look on his face. He didn't want to risk me and our child; even with Garrett showing him I'd be safe, it wasn't enough for him. The only reason he was allowing it was because of Alice, and in turn, the guilt he knew I'd feel if something happened to her. The angels were at our door because of me, we both knew that.
"Okay." It was the only thing I could say that wouldn't send me into a tailspin, too. Admittedly, I was scared. I couldn't tell him that, knowing he'd put a stop to it in an instant.
"We need to hurry," Jasper said desperately.
"Keep your eyes on me," Edward said. I nodded and instantly felt the warmth again as Garrett returned his hand to my shoulder. Jasper clasped my hand and I felt him stiffen in response. The feeling coursing through me was foreign, so I didn't blame him.
Edward's voice seemed distant though he was right in front of me. "How long should it take?" he asked.
"Only a minute or so," Garrett replied.
"You look hot today, babe," I said, giggling when Edward's bushy eyebrows rose almost to his hairline. "I love when you were suits, makes me want to mess you all up." I licked my lips.
"An interesting side effect, I'm afraid," Garrett said at Edward's questioning look.
"Is safe, I can feel her heart beat and her soul. She is fine and beautiful," he said in awe. From the sound of his voice, it was probably one of the first times he could see into a soul in such a manner.
Another other-worldly being that claimed we were having a girl. A daughter.
"We're having girl," I said, smiling at my husband.
Edward kept his pretty green eyes on me, and I wanted to touch him. I tried to reach out for him but he shook his head, making me all sad again. "Not right now, love."
My wife was drunk on whatever power/essence was being fed to her. She giggled suddenly, before she squeezed an eye shut, squinting. "It sort of tickles right here." She rubbed at her chest. Her eyes widened. "Is Alice okay?"
Not wanting to take my gaze off my wife, I tried to look from the corner of my eye. I could see from my peripheral that the rigidity of Alice's body on Jasper's lap had started to loosen. Her shaking was minimal and the tears that fell from her eyes ceased.
"She looks better, baby," I whispered, wanting desperately to touch her. Her face was flushed, her lips pressed into a pout as she stared at me. She tried to reach for me again, but I told her she couldn't.
"I'm scared," she murmured, pouting more. "What if I'm not a good mommy?" Confused, I looked at her at little more closely and saw that she was serious. "I talk to ghosts. What if something happens to her because of them?"
"We'll find a way to make sure she's safe."
She nodded and sighed. "I'm tired." She seemed like a child, trying hard not to fall asleep.
"Almost there," he replied, turning to look at Jasper and Alice.
"She's warmer," Jasper whispered. "She's not crying or shaking. What will she remember?"
"Everything until she grabbed the feather," Garrett answered. "There she is. She should be better now."
He lifted his hand from Bella's shoulder and she tumbled into my arms, nuzzling against the crook of my neck. "I want to go home."
"We'll go in a while." I held her impossibly closer, she felt warm and smelled wonderful.
"J-jasper," Alice muttered as she came to.
Bella sighed softly, "She's going to be okay."
"Yes, she is," I said, kissing the top of her head.
Garrett's gaze was riveted on Alice and Jasper. They were staring at each other, and even though they weren't talking, you could see them communicating in that way that only couples with a deep connection could.
"Again, I apologize for what has happened," Garrett said to them. Jasper looked up at him, but Alice looked confused as she followed his gaze. She couldn't see Garrett. Jasper nodded and held Alice tighter against him. Garrett turned his attention to me and Bella. "I'll be in touch."
His disappeared again with a flutter of his wings and that time left nothing behind.
"I wonder why a person can see a feather from an angel of death when they can't see the angel." Bella asked, tightening her arms around my neck.
Jasper adjusted Alice and rose to his feet with her clutching tightly around him. "Time to go."
Before I could respond, someone pounded on the door. Shit. "Professor Cullen?" a firm male said through the door.
"You can put me down," Alice whispered. I helped Bella to her feet but kept her tucked to my side.
I had to say something. "Yes?"
"Campus security alerted me to an incident with your wife and a former student."
I walked toward the door, opening it without a second thought. If I kept him waiting, the dean would make too much of it.
"Hello, Marcus," I said, trying to keep my composure. "Alice, both a friend of mine and my wife's was dizzy, but she is fine now."
"Hmm," he said, craning his neck to look over my shoulder. "Your wife and friend were also seen at the library. Is there something we need to discuss, Mr. Cullen?"
"Not at the moment, no," I stated as his eyes roamed over Bella. She clung to my shirt, smiling up at him. The side effect of her slight drunkenness seemed to have dissipated, thankfully. How would I explain her condition when the university was aware of her pregnancy, as I'd indicated that I would take family leave soon?
"If you are planning on doing an investigation anywhere on this campus, my office must be notified. Are we clear?"
"Your wife says you need to see Dr. Cano soon, your cardiologist," Bella murmured, her eyes softening at something behind him. "She says you're not eating well and with your grandson due any day now, your daughter will need you."
Marcus Williamson's mouth dropped open. Taking advantage of that stunned expression, I grabbed my keys and led Bella out the door with Jasper and Alice right behind us. I'd face the music later. I hoped that maybe he'd believe when I asked to spend the night in the library. Welcome to my world, Marcus.
Cozy by the fire, I asked Bella about what had been bothering me since she confessed her worries earlier that night. "Why didn't you tell me you were nervous about the baby? Having doubts?"
She sighed, snuggling closer against my chest. Her hands ran along my forearms wrapped around her waist.
"I didn't want you to worry more."
"I know that I sound like a broken record and that I'm over protective, but your safety means everything to me."
"I know and I feel the same about you and our daughter."
"Then you'll make a great mother," I said, kissing the top of her head. "As for the ghost thing, how about we decide what will happen later."
"You heard Garrett, I can't stop."
"I know, but that doesn't mean you have to take on the darker spirits."
She sighed. "To be honest, I've seen more of those since I met you." I stiffened. "Hold on there, I know it's not because of you. What I meant to say is that whatever is making these ghosts more vengeful in the area happened around the time I met you."
"What are you thinking?"
"There's something different about Clarence, the poltergeist that haunted my old house."
"Again, what are you thinking?"
"He may be able to give me more answers."
"Is he dangerous?"
She shook her head. "He's never hurt me before. I lived with him for years."
"Can we wait a while before you try reaching him? You've been through a lot lately."
"Of course. Between today, the possible library investigation, my normal crossovers and my research on finding the little boy in trouble that one of the spirits said I needed to help, my days are busy."
That was a lot to deal with and yet, she still got up every day to continue on working through it all.
"And your nights are all mine," I whispered, nipping her ear. I wanted to get her mind off all those things, at least for a little while. I laid soft, opened mouthed kisses along her neck and shoulder.
She laughed. "You better take advantage of these nights, because soon, your daughter will keep us up all night—to feed and change her, that is."
I groaned against her neck, loving how she laughed, even after such a trying day. Despite all she'd been through, all that she'd seen, she still thrived. As she pressed her soft lips against mine, I hoped that I was a part of the reason. She was mine.