Chapter 1~ When It All Went Wrong
Alice was frantic as she ran and grabbed her passport, purse and suitcase. She kept mumbling different phrases so fast that even Jasper was unable to understand her. Her mood switched from panicked to mournful to thoughtful and focused in mere seconds. Jasper tried to send her waves of calm but her emotions, as erratic as they were, were too strong to succumb to his gift. Carlisle was at the hospital while Emmett and Esme were in town getting supplies for a new project she was working on. Rose was in the garage and though she could hear Alice's activities, she dismissed it as Alice being Alice. Jasper was getting concerned when she began packing her suitcase.
"Alice darlin', what is going on? What are you doing?"
She stopped abruptly as if she hadn't realized that he had been there watching her for the last several minutes.
"Oh Jasper…it's terrible! I had a vision. It was of Bella."
She paused. She didn't want to say this out loud. Jasper sensed an overwhelming wave of loss and mourning flow from Alice as her eyes glazed over with venom tears. Her lip quivered.
"Oh God Jasper…Bella jumped off a cliff. She's…she's gone, Jasper! Bella is dead!"
She ran into Jasper's arms sobbing tearlessly as he held her to him; caressing her spiky black hair.
"Ali darlin', are you sure? You know your visions aren't always certain. Maybe she just fell and she will be okay." he said in an attempt to give her hope.
Jasper knew what it did to Alice when she had to leave Bella behind. She truly considered Bella her sister.
Alice was shaking her head into his chest.
"No Jazz. She jumped. She didn't even scream or look afraid. She looked sad and tired. She just stepped off the cliff and fell into the water; never resurfacing," she said as she sobbed.
Jasper again sent her waves of calm and this time they helped. She settled down slightly, but her sense of loss was still just as strong.
"I need to go back for Charlie," she spoke into his strong chest, "I need to say goodbye to my sister and try my best to help Charlie through this."
"Do you want me to come with you?" he offered.
She looked up into his golden eyes and saw the love and concern he had for her. She also saw the guilt that had been there everyday since Bella's disastrous birthday party. She ran her hand down the side of his face and cupped his cheek with her palm.
"No," she said shaking her head, "I won't be gone long. Maybe a week or two. Stay here and let everyone know what happened. Esme is going to need you when she hears the news. I will call you when I get to Forks."
Jasper nodded in understanding. Alice never knew how much Bella explained about the family leaving, and Jasper wasn't sure if Charlie put any of the blame on him. He watched her as she latched her suitcase closed. It was only a carry-on since she still had a closet full of clothes at the house in Forks. He pulled her to him and kissed her deeply. He hated to be away from her even for a few days, but he knew that she felt that this was something she had to do. Alice backed away kissing her finger then placing it on his nose. They exchanged a soft smile and seconds later he heard the Ferrari roar to life and speed down their driveway to the main road.
Rosalie was in front of him before the sound of Alice's car was out of ear shot.
"Where was Alice going with a suitcase?"
"Back to Forks," his tone was lifeless.
"Why would she be going back there?" she asked with curiosity laced with distain.
She was never a fan of Forks and even less of one after Edward met Bella. Jasper looked at her and spoke with a bit more maliciousness.
"Bella jumped off a cliff and killed herself. Alice has gone back to say goodbye and help Charlie out in any way she can."
"She what? Why would she do that?"
Jasper shook his head, "Alice hasn't been lookin' in on her since we left. Edward basically forbade her," he paused as he stepped to the window looking in the direction that Alice had gone; maybe hoping to catch a glimpse, "but then a vision hit her hard without her even trying. Bella jumped off a cliff into the water and never came back up."
He spoke as if he was talking about the weather and was just relaying the facts. But inside, his emotions were raging through him. This is all my fault. If I had not tried to attack her, Edward would have never left her and she would have never killed herself. All my fault.
Rosalie stood there in Jasper and Alice's room stunned by the news. She never wanted Bella to be a part of their family, but she was incredibly sad over her death. She thought back to the times that Esme and Alice had begged her to give Bella a chance since she was Edward's mate. Edward! Someone needs to tell Edward.
"Jasper, you need to call Carlisle and Esme and let them know."
He nodded, "Where are you going?"
She sighed heavily, "I'm going to call Edward. He needs to know."
Jasper was across the room in a millisecond with his hand on Rosalie's arm, "Don't you think we should wait till we hear from Alice before telling him?"
Rosalie just shook her head, "No, if it was me, I would want to know right away. I think he will be more upset if we wait to tell him. What is going to change between now and when Alice gets to Forks?"
Jasper let go of her arm as she walked at a human pace to her room where she left her phone. Jasper was also in no hurry to deliver this news to Carlisle or Esme. They had considered Bella a part of this family and leaving her had been very hard on them. This was going to break Esme's silent heart.
Jasper hit the speed dial number two on his phone and within two rings it was answered.
"Hello son. How are you?" Carlisle's smooth voice came through the phone.
Jasper stiffened his back preparing himself for the sad news he must convey.
"Carlisle, Alice had a vision and it was not good. It was of Bella," he paused to allow Carlisle a moment to prepare himself. "Bella appears to have jumped off a cliff into the ocean and never resurfaced. She is gone, Carlisle."
There was silence on the other end of the phone. Jasper could hear the sounds of the hospital in the background so he knew the connection was not lost.
Carlisle knew from the moment he heard Jasper's tone that this was not a social call, but he never expected this tragic news. His dead heart felt as if it was breaking into a million pieces. He loved Bella as did the rest of the family. He never thought it was right to leave her, but knowing that Edward had chosen not to change her, he felt leaving was the only option. It is not safe for a human to live amongst their kind indefinitely. He understood Edward's wish for Bella to live a long and normal, human life. But this was not enough. She should have lived to a ripe old age surrounded by her family and friends. The world was robbed of a true treasure with the loss of a soul as good and loving as Bella's. He took a deep breath before responding.
"This is indeed very sad news. Tragic even. We must inform the rest of the family. Who else knows?" Carlisle's voice was laced with sadness.
"Rosalie is calling Edward right now. Alice is already on her way to Forks to be there for Charlie. If you would prefer to tell Esme, I would understand."
Carlisle nodded then verbally responded, "Yes, I think that is best. Thank you Jasper. I will call her and Emmett right now. It is time to go back to Forks and say goodbye."
Jasper may have been miles away from Carlisle, but his emotions were so heavy on the phone that Jasper felt his pain through the center of him.
"Carlisle, I am sorry to have to give you this news."
"Thank you son. We all knew this day would come, but I never expected it so soon. I will see you as soon as I can make arrangements to take the time off."
They ended their phone call as Jasper heard Rosalie's voice carry from her room.
"Edward? Edward? Please say something," she paused, "Edward? This was not your fault. She was human. Death would have found her someday. You know this. Edward, please say something, anything?"
There was a haunting silence that fell upon the house. Then Rosalie heard it. What would be the last word her brother ever spoke to her.
The phone disconnected. Jasper was at the door to Rosalie and Emmett's room in a flash as she redialed her phone. It went to voicemail.
"Edward! Please call me back! Call someone back! Please," her voice was frantic, "just call us. We love you Edward."
She hung up and redialed a second time, and again it went to voicemail. She disconnected.
"What have I done?" she asked Jasper as her eyed filled with venom.
"You did what needed to be done. He just needs some time. Come on Rose. Let's get packed. I talked to Carlisle and we are all going back to Forks."
Rosalie nodded and composed herself as she sped around her room packing for her and Emmett.
"I'll get bags packed for Esme and Carlisle too once I am done here."
"Thank you Rose."
Jasper walked back to his and Alice's room at a human pace as he hit the speed dial number four. The generic voicemail answered.
"Edward, I wanted to let you know that I am immensely sorry about Bella and that the family is on their way back to Forks for the funeral. Please call me and let me know that you got this message."
Jasper closed his phone ending his message. He began packing his bag as his guilt started to weigh him down. None of this would have happened if he had hunted the day of Bella's birthday party. He knew he should have, but Alice wanted to make a last minute run into Port Angeles to get some more candles and decorations. She asked me to go and I never wanted to say no to Alice. When the paper slid through Bella's layers of skin, I heard the blood as it was released into the air. I realized a moment too late what was happening as the blood lust of everyone else compiled on me like the weight of Mount Everest. I couldn't hold it and keep my head clear. Before I knew it, all hell was breaking loose and all I wanted was Bella's blood. If I had hunted, I would have stayed in control. But I didn't and now we are going to bury our human sister.
Jasper was pulled from his self flagellations as he heard a gasp at his door. He turned to see Rosalie grasping the door frame trying to keep herself upright; the wood splintering under her strength. Jasper felt his guilt bouncing off of her and back at himself. He focused on releasing the guilt and worked on forcing a calm façade to take over allowing Rosalie to feel the same. Her breathing went back to normal and she stood back up. She didn't need to be a mind reader to know what he was thinking.
"Jasper, you can't take this all on yourself. So many things went wrong that day. We all knew Edward was doubting his relationship with Bella after the James situation. It was only a matter of time before he killed her or pushed her away," she said as she reached out to grasp his shoulder.
Rosalie was not an affectionate person like Alice or Esme, but she had compassion.
Jasper nodded but said nothing. They turned towards the back of the house as Esme and Emmett made their way in from the garage. Jasper took Esme into his strong arms and held her as she cried tearlessly as Rosalie did the same for Emmett. Emmett may seem to be the strongest and most fierce some of the Cullen's, but he was as tender as they came and he loved Bella as if she was his true sister. They sat quietly in the living room waiting for Carlisle to arrive. Once he did, they would be on their way back to Forks.
Alice arrived at the Swan house a little after dark. There was no one there. There was a lingering wolf scent in the air, but it was at least a day old. She worried about Charlie's safety if he was socializing with the Quileute wolves. She had never interacted with them, but she was familiar with the stories that Carlisle and the others had told.
She sat and waited in the Ferrari, but no one came. She ran over the vision again and again hoping to see it end differently, but each time it was the same. Bella stepped off the cliff. She didn't scream or cry out as she plummeted to the water below. There were waves crashing with the impending storm, and the wind howled unmercifully. There was no sign of Bella breaking the surface. At that point her vision went blank. She wept for the loss of her best friend; her sister. She wished she could have Jasper there with her, but she knew that she would see him when they arrived the next day. She sat in the dark and remembered all the fun she and Bella shared and how much it hurt to abandon her. I should have stopped Edward from leaving. I never should have agreed to leave with the family. She needed me and I left her because Edward thought it was for the best. Alice sobbed dry tears as she realized that her vision of a vampire Bella would never come to be. She was gone and no amount of venom could undo that.
Alice took a moment to try and look into Charlie's future and did not see him returning to the house anytime soon. So, she made her way over to the Cullen house to open it up for the family. As she drove she was hit with dual visions. The first one was of Bella. She was alive! She was in her room shivering and getting ready for bed. The other was of a distraught Edward. This vision was fuzzy and switched versions so fast that even with her vampire senses she could not make heads or tails of it. She knew he destroyed his phone so there was no point trying to call him. She would deal with her vision of Bella first. She hit the breaks and spun her car around to race back to Bella's house. When she pulled up she saw the light on in Bella's room and she couldn't help the smile that spread across her face. She jumped from the car to the tree and through Bella's window as fast as the wind.
Bella stumbled back in surprise; her heart racing in her chest. Then realizing that it was Alice, she threw herself into the pixie's arms. Alice began demanding to know what happened.
"How are you alive? I saw you jump! What were you doing trying to kill yourself?"
Before Bella could respond to the barrage of question Alice stopped cold. Bella knew she was having a vision and waited for it to finish. The look that crossed Alice's face was one of shear pain and anguish. Alice had another vision of Edward, but this time it was clear and absolutely horrific.
"No! No! Edward, please stop!" Alice cried out.