Sometimes I feel like giving up.

Sometimes I just feel like giving up this ridiculous, far-fetched fantasy of mine and fully commit to Jasper like he deserves. He really is a fantastic, generous, kind man that should only receive the best kind of life. Well, our version of life while our hearts continue to sit idly in our chest with no beats whatsoever.

As Bella nuzzles her nose into my throat once again while simultaneously pressing her body closer to my side and gripping my waist, I close my eyes and strain to avoid breathing in her scent. My body is essentially as rigid as possible and is comparable to a stone right now. I try not to melt into her embrace. Nor do I try to drift off into another one of my familiar fantasies where she has just passed out from our long hours of sweaty, all-consuming passionate lovemaking and the only way her broken, sore body can find comfort is pressing deliciously against mine. Right now, I would be tracing over scratch marks down the curve of her back where I momentarily lost control while her fingers and words pushed me over the brink. Alas, I'm only moving around the fabric of her flimsy tank top and once I realize that I've moved and fell back into the habit of caressing her, I jerked back as if she were fire. She only groans softly and breathes hotly onto my skin, making me clench my teeth.

Moments like these are both indescribably joyous and yet, also unbearable and miserable.

While I can pretend that the way her body refuses to leave mine for even a fraction during one of my sleepovers is because we're madly in love and we're both unabashedly needy, I've come to accept the fact that she's just used to being held by Edward's strong, protective arms. She substitutes me for him while he is gone away to hunt for the night.

I still put myself through the torture and let the truthful walls slip, allowing me to slip into my pathetic fantasy that results in me gripping her a little tighter and briefly kissing her forehead lovingly. It's a mistake, however. I become too relaxed. And when Edward shows in the morning, slipping easily through her window, I'm afraid that my face and thoughts show too much. I work hard to force my thoughts to shy away from Bella's soft lips or the way the strap of her blouse has fallen just slightly to showcase her delectable shoulder and collarbone. I leave almost immediately when he returns for fear that I'll slip. There have been too many close calls where she has stretched to revel her toned stomach and the curve of her back or she moaned in her sleep, waking up slowly to his voice once he returned.

I'm hopeful that I've hidden this crush well. I've become very trained in keeping my emotions in check while Jasper is around so he doesn't feel my attraction towards her and also, keeping my thoughts from anything that Edward would find unusual. It's almost as if she knows at times. Just when I think that I've got everything under control and my body is literally caving under the energy from keeping my walls up constantly, she looks over her shoulder at me, catches my eyes and winks with a mischievous smirk. Just like that, my defenses are down and I need to quickly leave to get myself in order.

It doesn't go unnoticed by my family. Emmett, for the idiot he is, seems to have figured it out and raises his eyebrows suggestively when Bella walks through the door with Edward for "dinner" one night. Rosalie makes a snide comment underneath her breath that I can only pick up and Bella thankfully can't with her human hearing while we clean up the dishes and she playfully bumps her hip against mine, and then kisses my cheek. Thank god, the boys were playing outside, with Esme watching over. In addition, Carlisle seems to linger by my door when he checks on me as I read the same book for the hundredth time. His eyes appear to nearly plead for me to express my burden when our gaze catch but I look away and return to the worn pages.

Edward seems to be unfazed. There are moments where we are playfully wrestling and a joking look grazes a territorial, feral glare. But he moves so quickly that I convince myself I was imagining it. Right?

The weight and burden of my growing crush on her is nearly suffocating. The effort to keep my defenses up constantly around my family is draining and the only way I can truly break free and let out my frustrations is when I hunt. I almost feel sorry for my prey.

Is it even worth it? She doesn't feel the same for me. She never did. She's completely infatuated with Edward and they're both desperately in love with each other. The way her warm gaze lingers on his face while he plays the piano for us and how they move towards each other like magnets is incomparable to how she acts around me.

Edward and Jasper certainly don't deserve this betrayal after all that we've gone through together. It's sickening that I should even think about hurting them like this. My face scrunches up and as if she senses my turmoil, she moves closer, caressing my side with her hand. It slips just beneath the hem of my shirt and a moment later, her warm fingertips slide from my waist to my stomach and a content, quiet moan escapes her mouth.

I…I shouldn't do this. I shouldn't be enjoying the way her skin feels against mine. I truly deserve hell. I feel sick for believing I had a chance with her and furthermore for thinking I had earned it. No.

Not after blatantly lying to Jasper. Not after he whispered that he loved me from the inside of my thigh before his tongue sought out my heat and I had to keep my walls up to stop pretending that the hair I was gripping was her long, brown mane and not his blonde locks. Especially not after I bit my lip to keep from moaning her name while he sheathed himself completely inside of me, nearly growling from the pleasure.

I don't deserve her after Edward stood in front of me, his protective arm blocking me from the werewolves after we stepped onto their land. Jacob was still burning with jealousy and his roar shook the leaves on the trees with anger, frustration and an intense ache to rid Edward from the equation. If only he knew that if he did successfully remove Edward, he would have to fight yet another vampire for her affection.

I can't take it. I begin to slide my arm out from underneath her and gently grasp her wrist to slide out from my shirt. I can hear her heart rate pick up and assume that she's having a nightmare; as she usually does when Edward is away. Normally, I console her and bring her close to me. Right now, I cannot. I can't bear to have her hold me as if we were lovers and as if we knew that our love could withstand anything. She will whimper his name quietly as she always does and reach for a body but I have moved out of her grasp. The guilt burns me and I have to look away from her contorted face to avoid slipping right back beside her.

"Alice," she whispers brokenly into the darkness of her room. My body stiffens. Just like that, all of my worries and guilt has flown away and all I can think about is ridding her of her pain. Quickly, I slide back down into her bed and gather her in my arms, hearing her heart rate slow down once again. She throws her leg over me, wraps her arm around my stomach and resumes her place with her head on my shoulder, her nose pressed against my throat. She surprises me and places a soft kiss on my skin that is almost unnoticeable. But I felt it.

"Mm. Alice," she murmurs again.

My hold on her tightens and I breathe in the scent of her hair while my hand caresses her arm. I melt into her. My hands try to move everywhere at once to calm her and lull her back into her peaceful dreams.

Sometimes I feel like fighting for her.