A/N – This is my version of what would have happened if Winnie had drank some of the water from the springs when she was there at the end of the movie. Personally, I cried for half an hour at the end when Jesse comes back and sees her tombstone, so I want to know what would happen if she took a drink and Jesse came back for her. She's not exactly where she said she would be. But she woke up with the sun...
I have read the book. I think it is a really well written, very good plotted book. Personally, I liked the book better than the movie. Winnie can have Jesse, but I get Miles.
Disclaimer – I do not own Tuck Everlasting. If I did, Jesse Tuck would not have said, "I will love you until the day I die!" because I thought that was just overkill :P
Starts out with Winnie at the springs.
It's been two months since the Tucks left.
I sat at the springs; at the tender age of fifteen, I had the most difficult choice of my life to make. To join Jesse Tuck and his family in immortality or stay with my parents. Surely I would have to leave them if I drank the water; I would never age and they would notice. Mother says I look different every day. She would be the first to realize that I would never again change.
I scooped up a handful of water as I thought back to what Jesse said: "Go back to the well, Winnie. Drink from it. When it's safe, I'll come back for you." Then, I thought back to what Tuck had said before Father and the others caught up with us. "What we have, you can't call it living. We're like... rocks on the side of the road. Never moving, never changing." I had asked him if it was wrong to fear death. "No," he'd said.
I was still afraid of death.
The water flowed through my fingers and back into the spring. I didn't know when Jesse Tuck would be coming back. It might not be safe for him to return for another century. I would most definitely not live that long. I so desperately wished to see the Tucks again. I even wanted to help Miles. Mae Tuck was so nice. And Angus Tuck may have looked like a grizzly bear, but I'd seen his true self and he was no harsh man.
I scooped up another handful of water and let it dribble through my fingers, thinking about the time I'd spent with the Tucks, just at the beginning of summer.
Jesse Tuck brought me to his personal Eifel Tower, right here in the forest outside of Treegap. He promised he'd take me to the real Eifel Tower, all the way in Paris, France, someday. I'd take off my shoes and climb all 1,652 steps to the top.
A tear dripped off the tip of my nose and into the water. I saw my reflection; the girl in the water was smiling.
Miles had been a sourpuss to me. I had come into the forest and threatened the welfare of his family (unintentionally) so I could not hold accountable for treating me coldly. Then I'd heard his story. He'd been married and had two children. They'd refused to drink from the springs where the Tuck family found immortality and believed he'd sold his soul to the devil. They ran off and took the better side of Miles with them.
Mae Tuck was such a sweet woman. She'd helped me out of that dreadful corset the first night I was there. She was the first one of the Tucks (other than Jesse) to call me Winnie.
More tears dripped into the water. Now, the girl staring back at me was frowning.
Looking up to the sky, I saw that I would need to decide soon, for I knew that if I chose not to come back, to the springs, it would be final. Mother and Father would never let me out of the house again. But if I drank from it, I would never have to go home. I'd find my own food and live alone.
I picked up the water once more. It slowly trickled through the gaps between my fingers. Once it was out of my hand, I used both to scoop up a drink of water and brought it to my mouth. I sipped the water from it and felt the coolest, most heavenly tasting water I had ever experienced. It slipped down my throat almost as easy as air. It tasted marvelous.
I finished the water I had put in my hand and stood up, wiping my hands on my already filthy dress. I told myself that I would go home, wait until nightfall and silently pack one suitcase. Then, I would make my way out of Treegap. At least far enough away to not be recognized.
That night, after Mother and Father had gone to bed, I packed a suitcase. I was about to open the door to leave when I realized that I should tell them that I'm leaving.
Dear Mother and Father,
I am sorry, but I cannot live like this any longer. I will go to another town for a while. Maybe after a few years, I will return to Treegap. If a boy around the age of seventeen with the name of Jesse comes around, tell him to wait for me. And tell him that I still get up with the sun.
Do not come looking for me. You will not find me and I do not wish to be found. Unless you are still alive when I return, earlier when you yelled at me will be the last time you will ever see me.
I left the note of the couch where Father normally sits to read the morning paper. Then I left my parents' home, not bring anything with me but the clothes on my back, two extra dresses, and a small portrait of my family and me.
I walked down the lonely road, keeping an eye out for anybody who might try to rob me of my few things. In the city of Masonville, that was common.
I wiped the sweat from my brow, wondering why it had to be so hot at night. I walked over to a bench and set my stuff down, sitting down beside it. I leaned back and let my head rest against the wall behind me. I closed my eyes and rested for a while.
Suddenly, I felt a hand clamp itself over my mouth and I was dragged to the side and backwards. I struggled against whoever it was. They pinned me against the wall, their hand still over my mouth. I tried to scream, but a pair of familiar grey eyes stared back down at me. "Shh!" they hissed.
I swiveled my eyes to look out to the street, about where I had been. Two burly men were walking down the street, knives and guns in their hands. They must not have seen my captor and I in the shadows, since they walked right past us. They, however, did not miss my suitcase. It was in shreds when my captor let me go.
I peeled myself off the wall and looked at the man walking away. I recognized the shaggy brown hair as he rushed away. "Miles?" I called, hoping that it was him.
The man rushing off froze. I kept going. "Miles Tuck?"
He turned around. "How do you know my name?" he asked angrily.
I took a step back, shocked. I would have thought that he'd remember me. "It's me. Winnie Foster," I said slowly.
This time, it was he who was stunned. "Winnie?" he asked incredulously. Then, surprisingly, he ran toward me and engulfed me in a hug. "Jesse will be so happy."
I was amazed. Miles had been so melancholy and unhappy when I last saw him. I was not complaining that he was happy again, but it was strange to see him like this.
I hugged him back until I was set back down. Winnie," he said. "Do you want to come back to the house with me? Everyone else should be home by now."
I felt a smile spread across my face. "Yes, I'd love to!"
Miles grabbed me hand and led me over to where the horse was. The horse had also drank from the well, so he'd been with the Tuck family since they got him. I climbed on behind Miles and made sure I wouldn't fall off; we took off.
The trees and houses whistled past us. Soon, within ten minutes, we stopped in front of a house hidden in the edge of the woods. It didn't look anything like the Tuck's home in Treegap.
Miles helped me off the horse and we walked up to the door and went inside.
"Ma!" he called. "Tuck! Jesse! I've got a surprise for you!"
One by one, I saw the rest of the Tuck family come down the stairs, each one rubbing their eyes sleepily. Mae Tuck stared at me for a moment. I smiled at her and she ran forward, hugging my tightly. I almost felt the air being squeezed out of me. I hugged her back.
"Oh, Winnie," she said. "It's good to see you again."
"You too, Mae," I replied.
I glanced up and saw Tuck and Jesse looking at me in shock. Jesse's mouth was hanging open, his eyes wide. Mae let go of me after a minute or so. Jesse still hadn't moved; neither had anybody else.
I was close to rolling my eyes when I ran into Jesse's arms. "Jesse!" I squealed.
I felt him unfreeze and he spun me around in circles. "Winnie!"
I was almost positive that I was strangling him. Immortality must have good parts; like being hugged as tight as possible and not dying from the lack of oxygen.
He set me down. Tuck must have come out of his stupor, because he bent down and hugged me too. "It's good to see you again, Winnie."
Jesse grabbed my hand. "Winnie, I have to show you something. Follow me!" I smiled and waved to Miles, Tuck, and Mae while following Jesse back out the front door.
We ran toward a small pond that was near the house. The first thing that happened was Jesse Tuck kissed me.
It was the same as I had remembered from months before. His lips molded to mine as he tangled his fingers into my hair. I pressed myself to him, wrapping my arms around his neck.
We pulled away, panting for breath. "I missed you, Winnie," he whispered. "I really did. It's been torture having to stay away."
I nodded wrapping my arms around his neck again. "For me, too. My parents made me testify against Mae and Tuck. They threatened to disown me." I felt a single tear glide down my cheek as I remembered that day. My parents were angry about what I had been saying. They told me that if I didn't testify against them then they would disown me. Even if Mae and Tuck had gotten away, they wanted to issue a manhunt.
He rubbed my back soothingly. 'It's okay. I know you didn't mean anything. You wanted to please your parents," he said. "I would have done the same thing." He pulled me away. "Now, I have to show you something, Winnie. Follow me!"
Jesse turned around and took off running. I lifted my skirt and followed him. In the darkness, I could barely see anything. I followed him by his footsteps and breathing.
Jesse must have stopped, because I ran into him. I laughed as he grabbed my elbows to keep me from falling over. He was laughing too.
I gasped for breath slightly. "Jesse Tuck, where are we going?" I asked.
He grabbed my hand again. "It's a surprise. Close your eyes and follow me."
I sighed in slight annoyance; I hated surprises with a passion. But I knew that Jesse wouldn't take me someplace I wouldn't like, so I followed him, slightly reluctant.
Since I couldn't tell where we were going, I stumbled over roots and rocks while walking. I was happy that I stayed upright for the most part.
Finally, when we stopped, Jesse grabbed my shoulders and turned me to face a certain spot. I felt his breath on my ear. "Open your eyes, Winnie," he whispered.
I felt a slight shiver roll down my spine. I opened my eyes and stared in awe at the sight in front of me.
It was a field. The moon shone down on the middle of the field when there was a rock with a flat top. The grass around the rock was a bright green, even in the dimmed light. The moon was lower in the sky than it had been hours before, but I imagined that, at midnight, the moon would hover directly above the rock. The warm air felt different here, less humid than it had on the streets. It was almost as if the moon and darkness just took away the sweltering heat.
"Wow," I mumbled. "Jesse Tuck, what is this place?"
He walked over to the rock and started climbing. "It's a little clearing I found when we first got to Masonville. The moon hits the middle of the rock in the middle of the night. I normally come out here to watch it, but I went out and did some things in the afternoon and was beat by the time I got back." He held a hand out to help me onto the rock, which I gratefully accepted.
Standing on the rock, I could almost look out over the tops of trees. I saw a light on in their house, which wasn't as far away as I had thought. I looked over my shoulder and saw Jesse lying on his back, staring up at the sky. It was beautiful.
I laid down next to Jesse and looked at the sky with him. After a short while, I moved my head, hurting from no pillow beneath it and from lying on a hard rock, onto his shoulder. I moved closer to Jesse and grabbed his arm, tucking my head under his chin. It fit perfectly.
Eventually, I must have fallen asleep, because I didn't remember much else. I faintly recalled waking up for a few minutes to climb down the rock and then being lifted up into someone's arms, but then I woke up on the couch with not much else to say for that night.
I sat up and looked around the house for the first time. The sun lit everything up. The couch I was on was in the middle of the living room and there was a table in front of it. The kitchen, a room over, was filled with the Tucks. Their small table was filled with delicious looking food. To my left, I saw a staircase and figured that the bedrooms were up there.
Mae was the first to notice that I was awake. "Oh, good morning, Winnie. Are you hungry?" I had missed her accent dearly. I nodded and stood up, pulling a blanket which had been thrown over me away. I walked over to the table and took the empty seat between Jesse and Mae, who was sitting at one end of the table.
I filled my plate with lots of food. The unspoken rule (no talking while there is still food to be eaten) still applied, because nobody started up a conversation.
After the table was cleared of food, everyone stood up simultaneously. It was strange that, after eighty years of not aging, they would do things the same way at the same time, sometimes without even realizing it.
"Hey, Winnie," Jesse said. "Do you wanna come fishing with me? We haven't stocked up on fish lately and, personally, as much as I love Ma's flapjacks, I'd love to have some fish for dinner tonight."
I giggled. "Of course," I replied. I followed Jesse out to a lake, which was right outside their house. I hadn't seen it the night before.
He grabbed two fishing poles and a couple of buckets and put them in the rowboat. I gingerly stepped inside and waited for him to get in and push the boat away. He did so and we rowed out to the middle of the lake, where we drifted.
We sat there for a while in silence. It seemed that there really wasn't much to say. Then, he spoke.
"Winnie," he started. "Did you drink from the spring?"
Since I was on the other end of the boat, looking away from him, I didn't turn around. I didn't want him to see the look on my face. "Yes, I did."
I couldn't see the look on his face either, so I didn't know if he was happy or upset. I was afraid of what Tuck would say. He probably thought he had convinced me not to drink from the spring when we went out in the boat before they'd had to leave. He would be disappointed.
I felt Jesse grab my hand. "I'm happy you did, Winnie," he told me. By the tone of his voice, I realized that it would be safe to look at him, seeing as he wasn't upset or angry. I would have been shocked if he was; he'd been the one to ask me to drink from it in the first place.
His face was a mixed mask of happiness and shock. Did he truly think I would let him live without me? It would have been selfish of me to go either way, whether to drink from it or not. If I hadn't drank from the spring, it would have been selfish of me to have lived a long and full life with someone I could never love like Jesse Tuck. But, because I did drink it, it was selfish of me to take myself away from my family.
But in the process, I gain a new family.
After three hours of fishing, we were getting ready to head back to the house.
For a moment, though, everything seemed perfect. The day was bright and happy, everything seemed to be going the way it should. My newly shortened hair shimmered in the water as we fished. We already had caught seven trout. Jesse, sitting behind me, yanked on his fishing pole. It came out of the water with no fish attached and flew through the air.
And then that moment ended.
A/N – Okay, how was that? I'd really appreciate feedback. I am going to be mixing a bit of the book into what happened in the movie. Like, Miles is nice in here. He was bitter in the movie, but after knowing that Winnie wasn't going to expose them, he started to be happy again. Also, for those of you that have read the book, I'm switching out the freeing Mae part. Like, in my version, at the end when they were saving Mae, instead of Winnie 'running' from Miles and Jesse, they take off the bars and she goes in through the window to take Mae's place. But, no matter how much I think the line was overkill, Jesse still hops onto the back of the wagon and says, "I will love you, Winnie, till the day I die!" Seriously, how many of you cried at least 3 times during this movie? I did. The first time was when Miles was telling his story, the second time when Jesse screamed that back to Winnie, and the third time at the very ending when he saw her tombstone.