Alice's mother did not speak to her for the rest of the night. She went to Jasper's house, and left her home alone, not coming back for more than two hours. Alice was not given the details of what they talked about, and she wasn't even sure she wanted them. What good would they do her?
Jasper's parents had never particularly liked her - they didn't try to hide the fact that they thought Alice wasn't good enough for Jasper. For the entire time they had been dating, Alice maintained that being poor didn't make her less worthy; anyway, something as trivial as money would never matter to Jasper. Now, though, even she had to admit that she didn't have much going for her - she was poor, had no father, and had gotten pregnant before she turned seventeen. What parent in their right mind would like someone like her?
No doubt, they would be willing to do anything to protect their precious, over-sized ego - the fewer people that knew that their son had knocked a girl up, the better. Oh, what she would do to see the looks on their faces when they realized she intended on keeping the baby...
Throughout the night, Alice's hand gravitated toward her stomach. It fascinated her that, just under the skin and fat, was a live, human, baby. True, it would be no bigger than a pea, but still... a baby. A baby that was hers.
Alice could see herself being a mother. It wasn't hard to picture bringing the baby home from the hospital, the first couple of months, the first birthday... The first steps, the first day at school...
But she was getting ahead of herself.
The question wasn't ifshe could be a good mother - she knew the answer to that - but if she should be a mother. Alice told herself to think about it - what could she provide a baby with? A life like the one she had had, made only a little better by the presence of a father, and not much else.
Honestly, though, how horrible had her life been? If she were to die tonight, would she really look back and think that it had been a waste?
Her life may have been hard, but it wasn't bad. In fact, it was probably better than the lives of a lot of her classmates - the people she usually envied. At the end of the day, she was always happy.
What were the chances of her giving the same kind of life to a baby?
Alice sighed, rolled over onto her side, having given up on sleep. It was past three; in an hour or so, the sun would begin to come up, and Alice would hear her mother banging around, getting ready for work. Ms. Brandon wasn't the quietest person in the world - a trait Alice had gotten used to living with. That might come in handy, a few months from now...
For now, the house was dead silent, and it occurred to Alice that she didn't have the first clue about being pregnant. Weren't there all kinds of things you should and shouldn't eat? She knew that there were vitamins she should be taking, but didn't know what they were called... At times like this, she wished that she had paid more attention during health class.
Failing off-the-bat knowledge, Alice got out of bed, went to the living room, and logged onto the computer she and her mother shared. After bringing up Google, she thought about what keywords she should type in, finally settling for a vague search of 'pregnancy.'
It didn't take long for her to find just what she was looking for - a baby website that had a section for pregnancy. Finding the right articles was a much more daunting task; she set to work, shifting through pages about how to prepare a nursery, debates about whether it was better to have a natural birth or an epidural, and how to pick the right doctor. Why was it so hard to figure out how not to give a baby two heads and a tail? The thought made Alice shudder - even though she knew that that wasn't possible, it gave her a horrible mental image.
She decided that she would continue her search in the morning, and fired off the computer. For now, she had had enough of thinking about nothing but babies.
"How'd your parents take it?" Alice asked. She had called Jasper as soon as she thought he would be up; he answered a moment before the call went to voicemail.
"How else? They're pissed as hell."
He sounded worse than ever before - like he hadn't slept for a week, and had just been told he had to go run a marathon. If Alice hadn't also been up all night, and was still being given the silent treatment, she would feel bad for him.
"They think we should give the baby up for adoption," he added.
This was generous of them, Alice supposed.
"Did you tell them that it wasn't their decision?"
"Yeah - they said that we were kids who had made the wrong decision once already."
Alice had hated plenty of people before - from teachers to classmates to ex-boyfriends - but Jasper's parents were starting to top the list; mostly because, if she was honest to herself, they were right.
"Did they tell you what happened between them and my mom?" Alice asked, trying not to sound angry.
"According to them, your mom agrees that we shouldn't keep the baby."
This didn't surprise Alice, although it hurt her to know that her own mother didn't believe in her. Did anyone still believe in her?
After a long, very awkward, silence, Jasper asked, "do you think we should keep the baby?"
"Well... I want to."
It was true, she wanted to - Alice couldn't picture herself giving birth, only to hand the baby off to strangers, never to see him or her again. She wondered if Jasper thought the same way, and, if, deep down, her mother also wanted to keep her grandchild in the family.
Answering her question, Jasper said, "I kind of want to, too."
"It's our baby," Alice muttered - they had the right to decide what to do with him or her, no matter what their parents thought.
"Yeah..." Jasper echoed. "Look, Alice, I've got to go. I'll see you later?"
"Yeah - bye. I love you."
"Love you, too."
Normally, Alice would obsess over why he wanted to get off the phone so soon, but right now, she couldn't have cared less. She was so mad - mad at Jasper's parents, mad at her mom; mad at herself, most of all.
God, she had really fucked this one up.
Even though she couldn't have been more the eight or nine weeks along, Alice felt so fat - she swore that she could see a bulge in her stomach, even though, in the back of her mind, she knew her stomach was no bigger than it had been before she got pregnant. She might have been thin, but she had fat in the same places everyone else did, her stomach included. That would changes, though - in a matter of months, she would have stretch marks, a giant stomach, and God knew what else. No one liked to be pregnant; now, Alice understood why. Knowing what was coming, and not being able to do anything to stop it, was a horrible feeling.
Imagining a baby bump... Alice was pretty sure that was a sign she was going insane.
"There's your baby," the ultra-sound technician said, pointing to a spot on the screen.
It was Friday afternoon, and Alice was in a dark room, green gel all over her stomach, an overweight woman pointing out every feature of her future child. She stared at the picture in amazement, and instantly knew why they had saved this part of the appointment for last - when you were at the doctor's, ending things on a good note was a rare and valued commodity. Jasper was sitting next to her, smiling at the screen - already, he looked like a proud father.
"The baby looks just fine," the doctor announced, after showing them several angles of their child. "I'd say you're about ten weeks along; that means you'll be due in April."
April - that meant that, seven and a half months from now, Alice would be in this hospital, giving birth.
"Thank you," Alice said, beginning to sit up. She wondered how she was supposed to get all this gel off her stomach, without getting it all over her shirt... without a doubt, this was the kind of thing that left a stain.
"You're welcome, honey. You take care of that baby, okay?"
Alice smiled, "don't worry, I will."
Jasper stood up and shook the woman's hand; Alice wanted to laugh at him - he looked as though the woman had just told him that he was going to father the future president.
Still smiling, she asked him, "what do you think?"
Jasper shrugged, as if he were trying to brush it off. "It makes me look forward to it..."
"Looking forward to being a daddy?" Alice sang, laughing. "You think he looks like you?"
It seemed strange to her, them being here, sharing this moment... this was the kind of moment only married people had. Only married people went to an ultra-sound, gushed over the images, and shared their excitement with each other. Alice wanted this to be special for them... there was nothing saying that she could make her pregnancy special for herself and Jasper, even if they were teenagers.
"I hope not - I'd feel bad for the poor kid." Jasper answered, "do you have any idea how much people tease the curly-haired boy?"
Alice was wiping at her stomach with paper towels, not doing much besides spreading the gel around. What kind of cruel joke was this?
Finally passable, Alice yanked her shirt down, and got up off the table. Her mother was waiting for her and Jasper in the waiting room - in the last two days, she had calmed down significantly, and was back on talking terms with Alice. She hadn't said anything about her wishing they would give up the baby, and Alice hoped that it stayed that way - after seeing the ultrasound, the idea of giving up her child seemed impossible. She would do anything for this child - including put in the work required to keep it with her.
And, judging by the look on Jasper's face, he thought the same.
This baby's life would be different from hers - this baby would have a father in its life, a childhood outside of daycare, and, hopefully, wouldn't carry on the teenage-pregnancy tradition.
Sometimes, hopes and wishes could be realized. Maybe, just maybe, this was one of those cases.
Thank you for the reviews/adds this story has gotten - all of it means a lot to me.
Again, I do not own Twilight, or any of the characters involved. I am just a Fanfiction writer, who does this for fun, and nothing more.
I hope you enjoyed reading!