Twilight character names belong to Stephenie Meyer. No copyright infringement is intended. Thanks as always go to my betas, U2Shay and Adt216, for their beta skills and to kejce for pre reading. U2Shay, thank you for talking me through all of the changes on this one.
A/N: Shay, thank you my friend.
Between a Dream and a Prayer
Alice shifted the blanket covering Jasper's lap for the third time in the last three minutes, which caused him to sigh.
"I'm fine, sweetheart, just relax."
Alice nodded, but her nerves would not allow her to sit still. She knotted her fingers in her lap and felt her dry skin wrinkle under the movement. For the sole reason of having something to do, Alice reached for her pocketbook and pulled out a small tube of hand cream. The scent of peaches filled the air, calming her with the familiar aroma. Alice smiled fondly, remembering how Jasper started purchasing this scent long ago, saying if he couldn't have peach pie every night, he'd have to make due with its scent gracing her delicate skin.
With the tube resting back in her purse, Alice reached across the seat to find Jasper's hand. Jasper squeezed her weathered fingers then lifted the back of her hand to his lips. Alice let out a quiet sigh, her shoulders fell slack against the back of her seat. Jasper had always had a calming effect on her. He was the unbreakable shelter in all of her storms.
She allowed her gaze to drift to the window beside her. The grounds crew appeared to be making a few last minute arrangements before their flight left for Washington. They bustled around hefting baggage into the luggage compartment. They had a purposeful air about their movements, confident and ready in their tasks. Alice breathed deeply wishing she could feel as ready for this trip.
They were going to be in Washington for three days, returning home on Sunday with a plan to a surprise Jasper with a hero's welcome. Alice had managed to get all of their three children, six of the seven grandchildren, and seven of the nine great grandchildren to agree to meet them at the airport upon their return. Alice's eldest son, William, had promised it was going to be a homecoming his father would not soon forget.
"Ladies and Gentleman," a middle aged man called from the front of the plane. "We're all so honored to have you with us today. Our flight from Abilene Regional to BWI should take about three hours. Travel coaches will be awaiting our arrival at the airport terminal. Your team leaders have bottled water and a snack for each of you. We have a full day ahead of us, so please eat and keep well hydrated throughout the day. The drive to the World War Two Memorial should be about forty minutes. After that, we'll have a box lunch and go on to visit the Air Force, Korea, Vietnam, and Lincoln Memorials. If there's anything you need in the meantime, please don't hesitate to call on me or any of the volunteers wearing the blue Guardian t-shirts. For me and for everyone associated with Honor Flight, we thank you for your dedicated service to our country and truly hope you'll enjoy this visit."
There was a small smattering of applause and thanks from the seat rows as the man returned to his seat. Alice swallowed hard as the plane pushed back from the terminal then turned her attention to the pretty young stewardesses as they went through the safety instructions before takeoff.
Alice glanced at Jasper who was grinning as widely as he could. Half of his face stretched in a smile that reached all the way up to his ear while other half managed to curve just about an inch. His lopsided smile often reminded Alice of him as a much younger man, the way he mischievously half grinned at her was an indication of the alone time activities he'd been planning all day. Alice knew his current half smile wasn't a sign of lustful thoughts but a lingering reminder of the stroke he'd suffered last year.
The tight feeling in Alice's chest grew into a vice like grip as she recalled the panic she'd felt that day nearly one year ago. She'd watched the love of her life and her husband of nearly sixty years being wheeled through emergency room doors. Jasper had held her hand all through the ambulance ride. He couldn't speak but his eyes told her he wasn't afraid to go. He was just sad to be leaving her so soon. Later that night, he told her from his ICU bed that the eighty years he promised her on their first wedding night weren't quite up yet and he wasn't about to kick the bucket until she was ready to shove him off herself. Alice wept into his chest saying she'd never be ready for that. Then through mildly slurred speech, he reminded her of the last time he'd left his dirty socks on the floor. It made her laugh through her tears, and his light attempt at humor managed to get her through the night.
Alice's fingers tightened around Jasper's as she hefted the blanket a little higher on his chest. Jasper only rolled his eyes at her but otherwise ignored her mothering. She was being overly protective and she knew it.
"I've been looking forward to this day for a long time, Alice. If you were honest with yourself for two minutes, you'd agree that you were as well. Just enjoy the day. Please? For me?"
A small laugh escaped Alice as she watched Jasper's lopsided smile mix with the rapid blink of his eyelids. This was one of their private jokes. Long ago Alice had told Jasper she loved his sparkling blue eyes. This had made his already inflated ego expand to mammoth proportions. Thus whenever he wanted something from her, he'd bat his eyelashes like a wide eyed, over made up movie starlet. Even after all these years, she couldn't help but laugh at his attempt at manipulation. Truth be told, nine times out of ten, it worked.
"I'll try," she conceded, still trying hard to suppress her laughter at his antics.
"That's my girl." He winked.
The earlier trek through airport security and the subsequent boarding process had made Alice realize why she preferred to stay home. After being accosted by airport security and reminded countless times to empty the contents of her pockets, place all jewelry, belts, sunglasses, spare change, phones, and even her own shoes on a conveyer belt to be examined by x-ray, Alice was annoyed. What had they thought could possibly be construed as dangerous in orthopedic shoes? She had shaken her head in frustration then silently thanked her orthopedic surgeon that her reconstructed left knee hadn't set off the metal detector. Though the security checks on her person had been annoying at best, it was the man who had asked to pat down Jasper who was riding in a wheelchair that had completely put her off.
Alice had been about to give that security mongrel a piece of her mind when one of the little Guardian girls had patted her hand and told her this was just part of normal security procedures and that arguing with the TSA agents might actually get her ticket revoked. Alice smiled sweetly and nodded, but inside she had been wondering exactly what the mongrel thought Jasper would want to smuggle on the plane, aside from an extra jar of Ben-Gay.
Alice was grateful for the little girl who would be serving as their helper for the day. She had to split her time amongst the seven veterans on her team but seemed to spare the most time for Jasper. Alice managed well for a woman in her mid-eighties but even with her spry attitude, she appreciated the Guardian's taking turns at pushing Jasper's wheelchair.
Jasper's hand tightened around Alice's as the plane raced down the runway and began its ascent. His eyes were as bright and blue as the Texas sky and as young as a schoolboy's. Alice smiled in spite of her worries, promising herself to enjoy the day and take whatever time they had together as a gift.
"It will be all right darlin', the little Guardian gal said she'd stick to me like glue and make sure I don't get lost or fall. She gave me her word," he added with a wink.
"Yeah, I can see how much you're afraid of falling. You just want a little young blood warming up those old veins."
"Jealous?" Jasper smirked.
"Nope. I know she's just humoring you for the day. She'll go home to a young viral husband, and you'll be left with me."
"I'll be the lucky one then."
Alice shook her head and smiled indulgingly.
"You still haven't lost your touch, private."
"When it comes to courting you, I never will."
Three hours later, a caravan of sixty people, including twenty walking and fifteen wheelchair bound veterans, emerged from the jet way to a roar of cheers and applause. No less than a dozen sailors in full uniform welcomed each soldier and thanked them for their service. Alice watched the faces of the servicemen young and old as they shook hands. The young were honored to shake their hands and the old were humbled, for none of them, not even Jasper, thought the younger generations much cared about the war anymore. Alice smiled, realizing that today was going to be a day to prove them wrong.
As the trip coordinator had announced, coaches were waiting for them just outside the airport doors. The mid September day was sunny but cool in the nation's capital. It was truly going to be a perfect day for sightseeing. Like a slow moving train, shuttering along the tracks, the group managed the loading and unloading the elderly passengers with amazing organization and precision. Shortly thereafter, they were on their way. A happy chatter filled the coach along the route into Washington. Alice learned that the gentleman sitting across from Jasper enlisted when he was only fifteen years old. His father had signed for him, allowing him to take his post as a gunner on a warship in the Pacific.
My God, thrust into hell at only fifteen, Alice thought.
The chatter died down to a hushed awe as the towering Washington Monument came into view. They were getting close to their destination and nervous energy ran through Alice. Though she was loath to allow anything to enter her mind other than Jasper's health, she had to admit she was excited about seeing the memorial. This day had been a long time coming.
The World War II monument had been completed last year in 2004, but Jasper's health prevented them from making the trip. Everyone was disappointed, including Alice herself, but she'd trade any day, even a day like today, for just one more brief moment with Jasper. Each one God granted her was a gift to be cherished.
The bus came to a stop and once again the coordinator spoke, reminding the veterans to stay with their Guardians and asking the Guardians to watch out for tripping hazards. Alice didn't hear the rest of the instructions, her heart was beating too loudly in her chest. The excitement of the day was finally catching on. They had made it after a long, hard year to be here today. Jasper smiled as he took her hand in his. He looked so happy, and Alice couldn't begin to stop the smile that threatened to split her face in two.
"Ready?" he asked Alice as the little Guardian girl stepped forward to escort Jasper down the bus steps.
"Ready," Alice answered.
The monument truly exceeded all of Alice's expectations. It was larger and more beautiful than any picture she'd been shown. It looked to be about the size of a football field, encompassing a fountain surrounded by tall pillars and bronze wreaths marking the unity of each state, territory, and the District of Columbia. The monument was so open that a visitor could feel both cradled in the comfort of a grateful nation and free to stare up at the amazing September blue sky. The Washington Monument and the Lincoln Memorial proved stunning backdrops on either side for visitors, as they entered under the great tower marking the war waged in the Pacific. The monument was very a very humbling tribute in itself, but it was the stars marking the price of freedom that hit Alice the hardest. Each gold colored star, no bigger than her fist, represented one hundred lives lost in the war.
A cascade of water sheltered the stars from her touch. Much like the heavens sheltered those lost from the wanting, open arms of their families. The water washed over the wall of stars, bowing gracefully in a tribute to those lost from sight but not from mind or heart. To Alice, it reminded her of a stream of tears running over the curve of a soft cheek, arching until they fell to the ground, repeating their path. Though her own tears had long ago dried when Jasper came home to her, the stars represented so many others who had never received such a gift. It humbled her and made her glad that this place existed to remind younger generations of so many who made the ultimate sacrifice.
Slowly, reverently, Alice, Jasper and their guide made their way along the monument, taking in its beauty and magnificence. Bronze plates in relief depicted memories of a time over sixty years ago. Even Kilroy was found immortalized in a hidden corner. Alice watched Jasper as he took in the sights. He didn't talk much; he only smiled and nodded thoughtfully. They walked slowly on what felt like hallowed ground silently thanking those who had brought them to this day.
"Alice?" a shaky voice called.
Alice turned to see an elderly couple making their way toward them. A smiling faced woman with long, silver white hair piled in a bun was riding in a wheelchair toward them. Her mate, both tall and gracefully aged, was pushing her chair forward.
"Bella!" Alice shouted and strode quite quickly for a woman in her eighties to her friend.
The two embraced long and hard, for it had been nearly a decade since their last reunion.
"Good Lord, woman, you're old." Bella cackled.
"Yes, and I can see you've found the fountain of youth yourself," Alice retorted sarcastically.
"I have." Bella smirked. "He's right behind me. He keeps me young."
Alice lifted her eyes from Bella and walked right into Edward's open arms. He struggled to lean down and kiss the top of her head, but he managed it all the same.
"It's good to see you, Alice," he said warmly, squeezing her thin frame.
"You too, Edward. How are you?"
Edward shrugged. "I'm managing all right."
"He's the picture of health. You should see how his doctor crows over Edward's test results. He's the model patient; everyone should have cholesterol and blood pressure as good as his."
"Yes, that's what I strive for in life these days, making my forty five year old physician happy with my blood test results. What Bella isn't telling you is that she's banned anything that tastes good from my diet. What's there to live for without bacon I ask you?"
"Shut up, you old coot, I'd rather have you disgruntled and salt deprived than not at all. You're more fun this way."
Edward laughed. The years had truly been kind to him. His silver hair still fell in the same handsome part he'd had in the forties, only now graceful lines aged his face when he smiled. He was thinner for sure, but no less enamored with his wife than he had been the day Alice first met him.
"Again, Masen, I find you hogging my wife. Didn't I put a stop to that when I moved her to Texas in '45?"
Edward played along, backing away from Alice with his hands raised in surrender.
"My apologies, sir. I hadn't realized she was a married woman."
"Damn straight she is," Jasper joked.
The two men embraced heartily before being interrupted by a bellowing shout by another approaching couple.
"Damn, who the hell are these two old goats and what are they doing with my beautiful girls? Come over here and give me some sugar."
Alice's eyes grew wide.
"That's right, little bit. I see the name still fits. You haven't gained an inch in forty years. What the hell is old man Whitlock over there doing to you, anyway?"
"He keeps me on my toes." Alice beamed.
After being released from the mammoth arms of Emmett McCarty, Alice let Bella have her turn and stepped toward Emmett's wife.
"How are you, Rose?" she asked calmly and quietly.
Rosalie stared back. Her eyes glazed for a moment, then she began to squint, trying to puzzle out the identity of the tiny woman standing before her. Alice was about to make a more formal introduction when Emmett stepped over to Rose and surrounded her shoulders with one of his strong arms.
"Rosie, this is Alice Whitlock and Bella Masen," he said comfortingly. "We talked about coming to see them at the memorial today."
Rosalie smiled brightly and nodded before melting further into her husband's embrace. She closed her eyes and reveled in his comfort for a moment. She inhaled deeply and nodded once to herself before extending a hand toward Alice.
"It's good to see you…Alice, and you too, Bella," Rose said determinedly.
Alice stepped back as Bella extended her hands to Rose. She hesitated for a second before reaching for Bella. The two women locked eyes, and Bella tearfully smiled and rubbed the backs of Rosalie's hands with her thumbs.
"It's so good to see you too, Rose," she answered with a visible squeeze to Rosalie's hands.
Emmett swallowed hard beside Alice, and in response she wrapped a thin arm around his waist. He smiled and thanked her with his eyes before reaching for Rose's hand.
"Come on, Rosie, I have your flowers right here. We'll go lay them in front of the New York monument. They're for your brother, Arnold. He sailed aboard a navy destroyer called the USS Sumner."
Alice's heart clenched as she listened to Emmett's calming tone. She knew he was used to repeating things for Rose, helping her to disguise the effects of her illness by not asking questions or pressing for details she wouldn't be able to provide. Rosalie had been staring at Bella's face the entire time Emmett spoke. It was only when Emmett gently touched her shoulder that she released Bella. Emmett handed her a dozen red roses wrapped in cellophane and tied with a yellow satin ribbon.
"Okay, Emmett, lead the way."
"We'll see you in a few," Emmett called over his shoulder as they walked to the far side of the memorial closest to the Washington Monument.
"You okay?" Edward asked, leaning over Bella to kiss her cheek.
Bella nodded as another tear or two slipped down her cheeks. Alice knew what she was feeling. Though parts of this day were going to be wonderful, others were just going to be, hard.
Edward nodded silently and pushed Bella toward the Atlantic pavilion. Alice held Jasper's hand tightly as they followed with their guardian in tow. The couples had agreed in advance that they would start at the Atlantic pavilion to remember the war waged on that front and honor the friends who had sacrificed so much for that victory.
Bella struggled to her feet. A hand gnarled with arthritis held Edward's arm while the other cradled her tribute. Jasper rolled forward and stopped just beside them. Alice locked the breaks of his chair for him. Despite arguments from Alice, Jasper vehemently refused to sit while honoring those lost souls. He too struggled to his feet tossing a grateful smile to the Guardian girl for helping him stand.
Edward held Bella tightly as she shuffled forward. With shaking hands, she bent down and left four red roses beneath the Atlantic arch. Alice stepped forward placing her arm around Edward who seemed overcome with emotion. Edward dropped a kiss the top of Alice's head in thanks, then backed away leaving Alice standing beside her friend. She watched as Bella reached inside her jacked and produced a linen handkerchief. She carefully unfolded it and Alice saw the imprint of a circle in the center, as if something small and perfectly round had been steamed against the fabric. Bella pressed her lips to the cloth then leaned down once more to leave her tribute behind.
"I wish Seth could have been here." Alice heard Edward say toward the sky.
"He's still a pain in the ass," Jasper grumbled teasingly in an effort to lighten the mood. "Do you know he sent me one of those twin bell alarm clocks for Christmas? Only this one had a programmable date. He set the damn thing to go off at two am on Christmas morning!" Edward snickered and Bella chuckled through her tears shaking her head. "But I got even, I sent him Vicks VapoRub and Viagra samples. I can't wait to see what I get for my birthday."
Everyone laughed but Alice just gave Jasper a knowing look. His smile was infectious as was his lighthearted joke. With just a few words, he lifted everyone's spirits and made them thankful for the wonderful friendships brought about from that terrible war.
After the Guardian aided Bella and Jasper back into their chairs, the couples found their way over to Emmett and Rosalie. The group stopped at the pillar for Maryland, just two down from the one for New York. Once more Bella rose from her chair, this time with Alice's help, and made their way to stand before the pillar. They each pressed their lips to a single red rose before placing it before the pillar's long shadow.
"My father would have approved." Bella sniffed, looking around at the beautiful tribute against the backdrop of a clear, blue September sky.
Charlie had died some thirty years prior but lived on in the hearts and minds of those that had made the trip here today.
"Your father would have kicked someone's ass for not having any of Patton's quotes carved into the memorial. He sure had a lot of them." Jasper sat tall, thrust out his chest and recited in a low, deep voice: "No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country. And my personal favorite," Jasper added, with a conspiratorial smile: "An army is a team. It lives, eats, sleeps, fights as a team. This individuality stuff is a bunch of bullshit."
Bella laughed, "Your probably right. But I gather it's because some of his more memorable quotes weren't fit for little children's eyes." She added pointing to what appeared to be a boy of about seven and his mother.
The couples rounded the end of the curve of state pillars and Jasper tapped the little Guardian girl's hand, asking her to stop. They were paused in front of California. Jasper smiled weakly, and Alice knew he was still missing his friend. It was Alec who had offered him friendship and advice throughout the years. It was Alec who'd given him the path to manage the ghosts of the war. Alice watched Jasper lift his hand to his chest. His fingers slipped behind his lapel and brought forth a single page. Alice knew what it was; she'd helped Jasper buy the book. It was the final page of The Grapes of Wrath.
An old memory flashed before Alice's eyes as she watched the page flitter in the wind. On January first 1946, Jasper told Alice about his New Year's resolution.
"I had a long talk with Alec the night before the wedding."
"Mmmhm," Alice replied without words waiting for Jasper to say more.
"He said he could tell that thoughts of Germany and the Pathfinders was still eating at me."
Alice shut her eyes. It was upsetting for her to hear confirmation of worries that often plagued her mind.
"And you agree with him?"
"Yes," Jasper answered without looking Alice in the eye. "Then he asked me if I wanted to go back into the service."
Alice's heart stopped at the thought.
"Do you?" Alice asked shakily.
"No," Jasper replied. "I couldn't do that to you, Alice."
"Shouldn't or couldn't?" she asked quietly.
"Couldn't. I don't want to go back, Alice."
She looked at him almost skeptically.
"It's the truth, Alice," Jasper said with every ounce of sincerity he could muster. "I don't want to go back. I just want—I just want justice for them. The Pathfinders deserved more from me. It makes me sick to know I couldn't give them more."
"Jasper, it wasn't your fault. You did everything you could. I know you did."
"But that didn't bring them home. I want more for them, Alice. I want people to remember them. That's what I told Alec."
"And what did he say?" Alice asked.
Jasper shrugged his good shoulder. "He told me to contact my old Master Sergeant, Colonel Swan and anyone else who would listen to me about what's going on over there. I told Alec that Master Sergeant Gray said I didn't bring him enough proof, that there wasn't anything tangible he could bring to leadership. Alec wouldn't back down, he told me to stop wanting justice and to start doing something about getting it."
"I think he's right."
Jasper laughed humorously. "I told him it was impossible and you know what he said?
"No," Alice answered shaking her head.
"Only if you never try."
Alice smiled softly knowing that Alec's advice hadn't fallen on deaf ears. She watched Jasper lick his weathered lips and smiled fondly at him. Jasper sat quietly, gathering his thoughts before he spoke.
"We're gonna have a little bonfire tonight, Alec." Jasper called out to the sky as he carefully put the page back into his breast pocket. "Figured you'd appreciate getting the last word." He laughed. Jasper paused for a moment then let out a heavy breath. "Thank you, Alec, for everything."
By the time the couples reached the end of the tour, Alice was completely worn out. She could only imagine what Jasper and Bella were feeling. Though both of them wore bright smiles throughout the day, Alice for was more than ready to get off her feet.
They hugged their little Guardian goodbye after exchanging addresses and promised to write after visiting the final stop on the tour, the Korean War Memorial. The bus would take the remaining vets and guardians out to dinner then back to BWI while Alice and Jasper left with Bella and Edward.
Alice watched as Jasper patted the little Guardian's hand and gave her a look that said "best get to it." Together they waived her off and watched the bus, amble away.
"What did you say to her?" Alice asked from the curb as the bus rolled out of sight.
"I told her to get herself in gear. No one gets anything worthwhile done by just waiting around for it to happen. She wants to be a writer, that one."
"And so you decided to give her a little nudge?"
"You could say that."
"You're too much, Jasper Whitlock."
"Too much for her…just right for you."
Alice laughed and kissed his weathered lips.
"That's right. And don't you forget it."
"You can forget it," Jasper said with arms folded defiantly across his chest. "I've allowed you to coddle me all day, Alice. I'm not being rolled into that dance. I'm walking in on my own two feet."
Alice stared back into his eyes, and for a moment she saw the young defiant man who'd refused to allow a bad arm to keep him from his life's calling. She could argue and sulk, cajole or beg, and the stubborn mule was not going to budge. Alice balled her hands into fists; she wanted to count to ten, but she knew Jasper would only make fun of her for doing so.
"Fine," she spat through nearly gritted teeth, turning from him to look out the window.
I'll just come back out in a few minutes and get it myself.
"Al-ice," Jasper drawled warningly. "Trust me," he added more quietly after a beat.
Alice turned from the window and saw the I'm not kidding look in her husband's eyes. Jasper wasn't playing fair and he knew it. Ever since the early days of their marriage, Jasper only had to utter the words, trust me, to get Alice's attention. Those words were his way of reminding her how important it was for her to have faith in him. He didn't say it often, only when he really needed her to see something from his point of view.
"Fine," she answered, a little more dejectedly this time.
If she were being honest, she was coddling him, but in her mind it was justified. That's just what happens when you nearly lose your better half. No, she wouldn't apologize for looking after him. She wanted Jasper by her side for as long as humanly possible, but at the current moment she very much wanted to wipe that syrupy smug grin of victory off his face.
Jasper tapped the window and a young soldier in full military dress helped Jasper from the car first before assisting Alice shortly thereafter. The young lad took Alice's weathered hand and wrapped it gently over his strong arm, his white glove clad hand gently patted hers in comfort and welcome. Alice smiled pleasantly at all the careful attention and tossed her own smug grin at her husband.
Bella and Edwards' car had pulled up right behind theirs. Edward emerged first, followed by Bella. Alice smiled nervously at Edward. Both of them were worrying over Bella's chosen dress for the evening. It was a full length gown chosen specifically to hide her burns, but the length would make it easier for her to trip over it. Like Jasper, Bella had all but refused to be aided by a wheelchair for the evening. Edward went to help Bella but she shooed him away, and Alice thought she caught the words, you can't with your bad back, Edward coming reproachfully from Bella's mouth.
The Cannon House was more grandiose than Alice could have ever imagined. She tried hard to shed her nerves, but the splendor of the marble floors and polished chandeliers was overwhelming. She was in awe. Like many women of her day, Alice's thoughts quickly moved from the posh to the practical.
How does anyone ever have the energy to clean a place this big?
The young soldier tried to make small talk with Jasper as they moved to the elevators and up to the third floor. Alice's mind whirred and for once she was glad to have a supportive arm guiding her that didn't belong to Jasper. She clutched the young soldier a little tighter as he chattered away with Jasper. He patted her hand discretely in return.
"We're so pleased to have you both this evening," the soldier said as the neared the great door of the Caucus room. "Please enjoy your evening."
With that, Jasper and Alice were stopped before a very large sign that read WELCOME PATHFINDERS. Emblazoned just to the right of the text was a flaming torch and wing, the symbol of the paratroopers. Alice's hands trembled slightly as Jasper extended his arm toward her. He wanted to enter the room with her securely by his side. Jasper rarely spoke about the months he was lost in the German forest but when he did, he'd always tell her that she'd been right there with him, giving him the strength he needed to make it out alive. She would stand beside him in person tonight.
Alice swallowed hard, trying to push down the thoughts of those dark days. She'd had a hard time sleeping when Jasper was in the hospital last year. Nightmares plagued her. In every one she was old and alone, still clutching Jasper's dog tag which hung around her neck. In her nightmares Jasper never made it home.
"Aunt Alice," a woman's voice shrieked, breaking Alice from her thoughts. Her voice carried over the music playing softly in the background. "My gosh, you look amazing."
Alice looked across the floor and immediately recognized the petite woman approaching her. She had the brown eyes of her mother and the beautician colored curls that came close to the ones she'd inherited from her father.
"Serena," Alice breathed. "My goodness child, you're an old woman!"
"And proud of it too," Serena replied with a huge grin. "I have nine grandbabies to my name, Aunt Alice."
A quiet chuckle poured forth as Alice released her escort and wrapped her arms around Serena's round waist. The years had been kind to her goddaughter. Though Serena was probably a bit fuller than when Alice had last seen her, she appeared both happy and healthy. In Alice's eyes, those were the only two things that really mattered.
"Serena, honey, you've outdone yourself," a warm voice called over Alice's shoulder.
Alice released Serena who quickly moved to her father's embrace.
"I'm so glad you like it, dad."
"Like it? Honey, it's amazing."
Jasper greeted Serena with a kiss on the cheek and turned. "Alice, there's Roger. I'll be right back."
A smile of pride graced Alice's face as he watched her husband walk slowly with his back straight and shoulders squared. He drifted toward a group of seniors standing on the outer edge of the dance floor.
"So how's RJ doing?" Alice asked Serena who had just finished welcoming her parents, then Rosalie and Emmett.
"Oh, he's sorry he couldn't be here. The team got caught up in a rainout and they had to stay an extra day in Atlanta. He sends everyone his love, and he promises he'll be at Mom and Dad's bright and early for brunch tomorrow."
Bella laughed at that. "He just wants his father's cooking. Camille is a lovely woman but she can't cook for shit."
Alice about choked and Edward's cheeks turned a little pink.
Bella's got a lot more sass these days. Then again, maybe we're all getting too old to really care about offending people. Best to say what's on your mind and get it over with. Who knows if we'll have the chance to tell the truth tomorrow?
"What?" Bella asked incredulously. "It's true."
"I know it is, mom," Serena said with an exasperated sigh.
"How's his team doing this year?" Alice asked to steer the conversation in a different direction.
"They're fourth in the northern division standings."
"Not really, there are only seven teams in the north for the minor league, Aunt Alice."
"Now, don't give him such a hard time, Serena," Edward said. "He's happy and doing what he loves to do. What more could anybody want? And you have to admit it's a step up from managing Eugene's little league teams when he was a boy."
Serena rolled her eyes and Alice had to laugh at the sibling rivalry that still existed after sixty years. It was as though Serena never got over RJ taking up some of her space in their parents' hearts.
"Aunt Alice, who's that Uncle Jasper is talking to?"
Alice peered through the caucus of finely dressed elderly men to spot the white hair and shiny balding spot on the top of Jasper's head. He was beaming brightly and beside him stood a tall, salt and pepper haired man with his arm around Jasper's shoulders.
"That's Roger Black," Alice answered fondly.
Roger was Airman Jacob Black's only child. He was barely a year old when Jacob left for the war. Jasper started writing letters to Jacob's widow a few months after he and Alice were married. Eventually he became something of a surrogate uncle to Roger growing up.
"Jacob Black's son," Serena confirmed. "Was he one of the ones who returned?"
"No," Alice smiled sadly. "Jacob didn't make it home. He was one of the men who died on the march to Moscow. Thankfully at least a few of them did."
"Uncle Jasper has a lot to be proud of."
"Not just your Uncle Jasper, but your grandfather and your parents as well."
Serena smiled widely and in that brief moment, Alice saw the tiny little girl who loved being cuddled and taught new things. Her inquisitive nature as a child had served her well over the last thirty years. Serena had followed Alice's footsteps in becoming an elementary school teacher.
"There's so much more I want to learn about what they did. I was still just a kid when it all happened."
Alice smiled and indulged Serena by telling her the story she already knew. Serena had often said that hearing stories from those who lived it was what made history come alive.
"The pathfinders were thought to be dead. Their remains were found in a POW camp outside of Magdeburg. Uncle Jasper's tags were found among the Pathfinders'. That's why we all believed he was dead as well."
Alice steeled herself for the memories that were coming. Whenever she told this story, images of Bella holding out Jasper's lone tag and telling her he was gone flashed in her mind. After a moment Serena grabbed her hand and nodded, giving her the strength to continue.
"But…the remains they found didn't belong to the Americans, they belonged to the Russian POWs who were living at the camp. The Russians killed their own men and had the Pathfinders toss their tags onto the pyre to make it look like them underneath the ash. The Americans were deemed to be more valuable," Alice added in disgust. "They wanted to make sure that none of the British or American leaders had a reason to chase after them. And it would have worked…"
"If Uncle Jasper hadn't survived," Serena finished.
"Yes," Alice answered with a sigh of relief. "But he did," she said with a nod to the grinning man talking with Roger across the floor. "He got the information about the Russian's plans to his superiors. Your uncle wasn't the only one who told of the tug of war Stalin was playing with American POWs, but he had more information. He had the name of their ranking officer, their locations, and a Russian soldier who was willing to tell them everything he knew."
"That's why gramps went back."
"Yes," Alice confirmed. "He was a retired colonel," she added. "He had the most authority of all of them who knew your uncle's story. It took years of back room negotiations, but thankfully a few of the Pathfinders eventually made it home."
Serena nodded once Alice had finished. "The event here tonight is to celebrate all of them," she said solemnly. "The ones that made it home and the ones who didn't."
"And we're all grateful, especially your uncle and me. You've done a remarkable job, Serena. Please tell the congressman how thankful we are for the opportunity to celebrate here tonight."
"It took a bit of lobbying, but I'm tenacious when I want to be."
"Family trait." Alice grinned.
"Definitely," Serena confirmed.
A loud round of laughter distracted Alice from Serena. She knew before she even turned her head that Jasper would be in the thick of whatever was causing the commotion. Sure enough Jasper was gesturing wildly with his left hand as loud guffaws sounded from the men around him.
He's like a geriatric pied piper.
"I'll talk to you soon, honey. I think I need to go save those men from your uncle. He tends to exaggerate a little from time to time."
Serena waved Alice off and Alice took the opportunity to go to Jasper and save him from himself.
"…and that's how Colonel Uley, got my attention. I was lucky he didn't crack one of my ribs! Oh, hello, sweetheart. I didn't see you there."
"I know, but I heard you," Alice replied with a smug little grin.
Jasper smiled knowingly. Alice often had a subtle way of coming to his aide before he'd made too much of an ass of himself.
"Roger," Alice began opening her arms for a hug. "How's your mother?"
"She's fine," Roger answered. His salt and pepper hair did nothing to detract from the beauty of his well-aged face and dark skin. "She wishes she could have made it here, but her hip is acting up."
Before Alice could reply a voice called from over Jasper's shoulder.
"Excuse me…Professor Whitlock?"
All heads turned to a man who appeared to be in his early sixties. He was tall and fair with more dark than gray hair and deep penetrating eyes.
"I'm sorry to interrupt, professor," the man all but stuttered.
"No, no. That's fine," Jasper answered with a welcoming smile. "It's just I haven't been called professor in years."
"Although it hasn't been that long since your last lecture," Alice teased, hoping to put the man standing nervously before them at ease. He was rubbing the back of his hand so hard with his thumb Alice feared he'd rub the skin right off. "Even though it wasn't at Texas Tech, I vividly recall a lecture last week about how young people today have no idea how to write a simple letter now that they have e-mail."
Jasper snorted a bit. Alice pressed her lips between her teeth to try and hold back her laugh. She was telling the truth. Alice smiled, remembering how that lecture ended. Alice pointedly reminded Jasper that it had been far too long since she'd received a letter from a certain someone who did know how to write without using e-mail.
"Touché, sweetheart." Jasper acknowledged.
Alice's smile widened at Jasper's term of endearment. Sometimes it felt the same as the first time she'd heard it.
"You must forgive my wife and me for being so rude. After nearly sixty years of marriage, we seem to have our own language and tend to get lost in it at times. My apologies, Mr…" Jasper finished leadingly.
"Mullenkamp," the dark eyes replied. "Victor Mullenkamp."
Alice had never heard the name before and turned to see Jasper puzzling over the name and face as well. The man had just the tiniest hint of an accent but for the life of her, Alice couldn't place it.
"I believe you knew my uncle, Demetri…Petrovski."
Alice's eyes grew as wide saucers and she heard Jasper's breath hitch beside her. Her mouth went dry as she now knew for certain that the man's accent was Russian. The noise that floated around the room seemed to blur into an indefinite hum. Frozen in shock Alice realized that the man before her was a relative of the one who'd saved the man beside her.
She could hear Jasper swallow, hard. "You're Demetri's nephew?"
"Yes, sir. My mother, Laina, spoke of you often."
Alice covered her mouth with her hand. Jasper wondered for years what had ever become of Demetri.
"She said you were the American that saved his life."
Jasper stepped forward shakily and took a deep breath before speaking.
"He made it? He made it to the US? He found your mother?"
Victor smiled weakly, "Yes, he found her on May 20th 1947. They met—"
"Under the Statue of Liberty," Jasper finished. "On the anniversary of your grandmother's birthday."
"Yes," Victor confirmed with a nod. He was beaming now.
"My God," Jasper said, extending his failing right arm to Demetri.
The effort it took for him to do this simple task brought tears to Alice's eyes. It was the most he could offer this man at the moment.
"How is he?"
Victor's smile slipped. "He died a few years after finding my mother. He had lung cancer. They didn't discover it until it had spread too far to be treated. I was just a boy when he died, but I can tell you my mother was so happy to have the time with him that she did."
"Your mother had the story wrong," Jasper said, his blue eyes brimming with sincerity. "It was your uncle who saved my life."
Alice, who knew the whole story, placed a comforting hand on Jasper's arm.
"You saved each other, Jasper."
Victor gave an acknowledging nod of his head. "My mother would have liked to have met you but she passed away a few years ago. I only found you by reading the reply you wrote in Time about their article on the D-Day invasion. You leveled arguments against their rose-colored glasses view. You asked where the unity and certainty was for the POWs who were left behind. You quoted Yeltzin's admission in 1992 as proof that American POWs were left behind to wonder where their leadership and their country had fled. Those lines made me wonder if you could possibly be the right Yas-per my mother recalled from Uncle Demetri's stories."
Jasper smiled fondly, remembering the way Demetri pronounced his name all those years ago. He was about to ask how Victor had tracked him down when the conductor at the front of the room struck up the band. The band played a brilliant brass introduction then was quickly cut off by a flick of the conductor's wrists. The conductor then turned to the audience with a brilliant smile and announced that it was time for everyone to take their seats. Dinner was about to be served.
Jasper reached inside his breast pocket and produced his billfold. He pulled out an old weathered card from his days of teaching at the annex in El Paso and handed it to Victor.
"Please find me after dinner. This is my home number just in case we miss each other. I want to hear everything."
Alice took Jasper's hand and discretely helped him to their table near the dance floor. She could feel him trembling beneath her grasp.
"Are you all right?" she asked in a quiet whisper, wondering if she should ask Serena to drive them back to Bella's.
"I'm fine, I'm just overwhelmed. I've always wondered..." Jasper blinked as he found his seat, shaking his head once. "He really made it."
Alice smiled and exhaled in relief. She was very happy that Jasper chose to focus on the fact that Demetri had made it to the US, rather than the fact that he died only a few years later.
Not long after the first course ended, Bella stood and asked Rose to accompany her to the ladies room. Alice watched Edward and Emmett both visibly stiffen at her request.
"We'll be fine, boys," Bella teased as she shuffled along holding onto Rosalie's arm.
The look on Rose's face seemed to morph from one of glazed distance to someone very much aware of the person beside them. Rose seemed to realize Bella's need for a strong arm and some intrinsic force inside her remembered how to put her effort into the care of someone else. Alice swore she could see Rose's lips moving to count beats when her hand closed over Bella's wrist.
Bella looked up and smiled triumphantly. She appeared more than happy to play patient for the former Army nurse.
"How is she?" Alice asked when Rose and Bella were out of earshot.
"She has good days and bad," Emmett answered truthfully. "Fortunately today has been one of the good days."
"Are you still in that huge house?"
Emmett laughed. "Yup. Rose would never sell it. Her folks lived in it for nearly sixty years before they passed. We moved in when Rose's mom took ill, and we've been there ever since. I think it helps her being someplace that holds so many memories. I was getting too old to keep up the farm, anyway. It was time to pass it along. You understand."
And they did. Once Samuel and Jeremy were of age, Jasper started handing over the day-to-day running of the farm to the boys. By the time they were twenty-five, Jasper made the decision to go back to school. He stuck with it until he became a professor of history specializing in American Diplomatic History. Though Jasper wasn't maintaining the farm anymore, he guided the boys, helping them make decisions whenever asked.
To this day, Jasper and Alice still lived in the house they built the year they were married. Much like their marriage, the house had weathered, storms, fights, babies, and eventually grandbabies. Despite not running the farm, Jasper never lost his affection for horses. Up until his stroke last year, he took rides whenever he needed to clear his head.
"I do," Alice answered, squeezing Emmett's hand comfortingly.
The band started up again, and began playing the favorites of their era. The talk livened as did the mood around the table. Bella and Rose rejoined the group unscathed if not a little giddy from laughter. Alice smiled at Bella's wink from her seat across the table.
Maybe what we'll remember won't be the hard parts, but the hard fought victories of this life.
The music changed again; this time soft jazzy notes filled the air as a gorgeous redhead took the stage. The song's introduction sent a chill down Alice's spine but when the singer opened her mouth to sing, the entrancing lull made the hair on the back of Alice's neck stand on end.
I want a little, something more,
Don't want the middle or the one before.
I don't desire a complicated past,
I want a love that will last.
"I know this song." The words flew out of Alice's mouth before she could even stop them.
Jasper turned, looking a little concerned at Alice's outburst.
"Would you like to dance, sweetheart?"
Alice should have been worried about him managing, she should have told him no, but the next chorus echoed in her ears. The pull was so strong, it made it impossible for Alice to turn Jasper down.
Say that you love me,
Say I'm the one.
Don't kiss and hug me and then try to run.
I don't do drama.
My tears don't fall fast.
I want a love that will last.
Alice nodded and rose to her feet before Jasper could even think to pull his napkin from his lap. He followed shortly thereafter and extended his left hand to her. Alice placed a shaking hand in his while Jasper led her to the dance floor. He rubbed soothing circles over the back of her hand, sensing how unsettled she was. Jasper looked into Alice's eyes, then lifted the back of her hand to his lips. The motion was so loving and pure made Alice feel as if her wrinkles and age spots were there things her adoring husband never even noticed.
Together they made their way through the group of dancers and settled on the least crowded spot furthest from the tables. Jasper took Alice's hand in his and managed to press their joined hands to his heart. He dropped his head to her neck and rocked them slowly back and forth as the singer crooned the refrain.
I don't want just a memory,
Give me forever.
Don't even think about saying goodbye
Cause I just want one love to be enough
And remain in my heart till I die.
"Are you sure you're okay, sweetheart?" Jasper whispered with his lips upon her neck.
"I'm fine now," Alice sighed, reveling in the warmth of Jasper's embrace. Whatever need this song created to pull her onto the dance floor, it had been replaced with the extraordinary peace of being in her beloved's arms. Nothing on earth cold make her happier right now than the comfort of Jasper's familiar touch. His lips moved along her jaw to the tiny spot at the back of her ear that made her weak in the knees. Alice practically moaned. He hadn't done that since before his stroke. Once more the singer's sultry voice belted out. As the final lines of the both familiar and unfamiliar tune rang out, Alice felt like they were the only two people in the room. This time Alice began to sing.
There's just a little more that I need,
I want to share all the air that you breathe.
I'm not the kind of girl to complicate the past
I want a love that will last
Forever – I want a love that will last
Always – I just want a love that will last
Jasper's lips found hers slowly, reverently. His kiss made her flush like a schoolgirl. She should have been wary with the other dancers surrounding them, but instead she closed her eyes and enjoyed feeling her husband in her arms. He felt confident and stronger than he had been in some time. As the refrain warbled, Jasper's kiss became more insistent, his good arm tightened around her waist pulling her closer. And in those few moments of both longing and blissful haze, Alice felt Jasper's lips growing warmer, fuller. Her heart beat faster as her fingers traced up the sleeves of his coat to encircle his neck. Her willowy fingers ran into his hair. It felt thick and full to her touch, surprising her. Jasper's tongue drove into her mouth and Alice gasped with stunned delight. This was far more amorous than she could ever remember him being in public. His kiss grew more aggressive, tracing, coaxing her tongue with an urgency unlike anything she'd felt since they first met in 1945. A moan that neared painful sounded in her ears as Jasper's lips broke from hers. The sound was different, less gravelly than she expected but still familiar. When Alice felt bare skin rise and fall rapidly against hers, and soft lips upon her forehead, she froze.
"I should let you sleep. I should let you sleep," the voice called repeatedly as if trying to convince itself of doing something it did not want to do.
Alice's eyes sprang open to see her husband lying atop of her. His eyes were closed in either concentration or prayer. The music had silenced, the only sound in the room was the air moving rapidly in and out of their lungs.
"Jasper?" Alice asked as her hand reached up to sift through the long curls at the crown of his head.
"I'm sorry sweetheart, but I couldn't help myself. I know it was a long day yesterday and I should let you sleep. After all the reception lasted past dusk, and then we stayed up half the night together, but you were humming, and then you started singing," he explained through breathless gasps as if he couldn't get the words out fast enough. "And when you said you needed to share all the air that I breathed, and I—I couldn't wait any longer."
As if to give evidence to this statement, Jasper's hips rolled forward demonstrating his growing need.
Alice moaned feeling her own body spark to life beneath his.
Her addled mind overtaken by lust allowed her fingers to wrap themselves tightly in his curls forcing his lips to return to hers. Alice's hand traced his scar, then moved over his shoulder and back reveling in the defined muscles she found there. She followed down his lower back, tracing his spine until her fingers grazed over his firm hind end. She squeezed hard, eliciting both a jump and what sounded like a squeak from Jasper.
"What was that?"
Jasper had good reason to ask, Alice had never been this forward. Though they'd been intimate for about a month, she'd never acted quite like this.
"Just testing," Alice grinned. "You really are young and firm. You're real."
"Of course I'm young. You robbed the cradle when you married me, re—"
He never got a chance to finish that thought. Alice's sensual caresses made the words flitter from his mind.
"Good God, Alice, I'm never going to make it inside you."
Alice smiled devilishly, enjoying the power and control she had at the moment. Her ministrations quickly won out over Jasper's control. She wrapped her legs around his waist, pulling him hard, digging her heels into the back of his thighs. His body began moving against hers until he finally tensed, releasing himself in both mind and body to her.
"Wow," he breathed, his lips pressed to her forehead. "I couldn't think there for a minute."
Both their bodies shook with laughter at the honesty of Jasper's words. The movement drew out the last of the overwhelming sensations coursing through Jasper. He ended his laughter with a final groan of pleasure. They lay there quietly pressed against one another until Jasper left the bed to clean himself up. He returned a few moments later, to lovingly do the same for his wife.
Jasper lay sated with Alice's body wrapped around his and began combing his fingers through her hair. He was thoughtful in his blissful state until his hand stilled mid stroke.
"Why did you ask if I was real, if I was young? Were you having another nightmare about me not making it home?"
"No, nothing like that," Alice said, turning her head so her chin rested upon Jasper's chest. "I just realized it wasn't real. That it was a dream, or maybe something between a dream and a prayer."
"What was, Alice?"
"I'm trying hard to follow, darlin', but you're not making much sense here."
"I dreamed we were old."
"Yes, old. We were in our eighties. We were at a dance for World War Two veterans," Alice smiled at all the dream had encompassed. "It was a very good dream."
"Was I nice looking? You know as an old man?"
Alice laughed, not too surprised that that would be his first question. He was teasing her while looking to inflate his ego at the same time.
"You were quite a looker…for an old timer," she teased.
Seemingly satisfied that Alice still found him appealing well into his eighties, Jasper paused to consider his next question carefully before he asked it.
"Did I still run the farm?"
"No, you'd given that up years before."
Alice could feel the dejection in Jasper's body as he slumped.
"But we still lived here and most importantly we were very happy."
"Yes," Alice said with a tone of conviction.
"Did we have kids?" Jasper asked hopefully.
Alice nodded and lifted three fingers. Jasper smiled but the look in his eyes seemed to say Jasper had hoped for more.
"Then there were seven grandkids and nine great grandkids. But I think there was a set of twins due the following spring."
"Wow," Jasper said, quite stunned by the revelation.
He seemed to deliberate for a moment before rolling over and positioning himself gleefully on top of Alice. With a quick pull of the covers he dove beneath them and began nibbling Alice's bare stomach. She squirmed a bit then moaned as he traveled up to the swell of her breast.
"You're taking that promise to keep me in bed all day very seriously," Alice said between gasps for breath.
Jasper popped his head out from under the covers, smiling at the promise he'd made shortly after they said their "I do's". His hair was deliciously disheveled, flopping this way and that. His love for her was written all over his handsome face, shining as bright as the morning sun.
"Well, we've got a lot of work ahead of us," Jasper said with a rueful grin as he waggled his eyebrows. "I figured we could get a good start on making your dream come true."
Alice took Jasper's face in her hands. His eyes were dancing with happiness making Alice's heart swell. She smiled right back at him.
Silly boy, she thought.
"You already have."
A/N: I had the amazing opportunity to join an Honor Flight, a few weeks ago. That trip served as the inspiration for this final chapter. I have loved writing this story and am truly grateful for it because it sparked an interest in history I didn't have before. It's because of that spark I took the opportunity to be a Guardian on an Honor Flight honoring WWII and Korean War vets. This trip was truly one of the most inspiring events I've ever experienced. Trust me when I say that reading about history is one thing, seeing it through the eyes of those who lived it is beyond compare. There are numerous Honor Flight groups throughout the country, I highly encourage anyone interested to support this group either by volunteering, donating or by encouraging a vet you know to sign up for a trip. I spent one day in the service of others and what I received in return was paid back to me one hundred fold. If you're interested in hearing more or seeing some of my photos from the trip, you can find them on my blog, the link is on my profile and at the bottom of this author's note.
Thank you again for reading, reviewing and encouraging me throughout this journey.
All the best,
Honor Flight photo link is in the first comment: http:/firstblushes(dot)livejournal(dot)com/8769(dot)html#comments
P.S. Ten thousand points to anyone who can tell me the significance of the tribute that Bella left at the WWII memorial. (hint, this comes from TLB)
The Long Way Home Historical Research and Reference Guide: chapter 39 Between A Dream and a Prayer
Story reference: Alice describes the sights of the World War II Memorial in Washington DC.
Historical Significance: The WWII memorial wasn't completed until 2004, years after the Vietnam, and Korean War memorials were complete.
Story reference: Alice mentions that even Kilroy was memorialized in the WWII monument.
Historical Significance: Kilroy was a symbol to US forces and civilians alike of US presence in a recaptured territory or hard fought battle. The image was left behind for others to see and recognize.
Story reference: Jasper and Alice take an Honor Flight with other WWII veterans to see their memorial and other war memorials in D.C.
Historical Significance: Honor Flight is a non profit organization that takes WWII veterans on a one day trip to see the war memorials in Washington DC. More information can be found on their website.
http:/www(dot)honorflight(dot)org/programs/index(dot)cfm?s=TX#map - West Texas Honor Flight (Abilene, TX)
Story reference: Alice mentions being frustrated by being accosted by TSA agents. Wondering why they'd have interest in an old man's Bengay
Historical Significance: The therapeutic ointment called Ben-Gay prior to 1995 was developed in France back in 1898.
Source: http:/en(dot)wikipedia(dot)org/wiki/Bengay -
Story reference: Alice describes visiting the state monument of Maryland with Bella.
Historical Significance: The circle of state pillars surrounding monument are listed in the order in which they were given statehood.
Story reference: Jasper remarks that Charlie would have been mad that General Patton didn't have a quote etched into the WWII Memorial
Historical Significance: Quotes from President Roosevelt, General McArthur, General Eisenhower and General Marshal among others are preserved in the memorial.
http:/www(dot)military-quotes(dot)com/Patton(dot)htm quotes from General Patton.
Story reference: The dance honoring the Pathfinders and their survivors is hosted at the Cannon Office building in Washington D.C.
Historical Significance: The Cannon House Office Building, completed in 1908, is the oldest congressional office building as well as a significant example of the Beaux Arts style of architecture. The Caucus Room on the building's third floor is the scene of numerous ceremonies and functions
The image is of a Pathfinder patch described on the banner of the USO dance.
Story reference: Victor describes finding Jasper after he posted a response to a D-Day article published in Time Magazine
Historical Significance: A series of Time magazine articles on D-Day describing the events of the day, personal stories and the national climate during and after the war.
Story reference: Alice hears a song that pulls at her memories and out to the dance floor with Jasper
Historical Significance: Rene Olmstead – I want a love that will last.