This is something that has been on the backburner for a while now. Any comments are welcome. If it seems that people are interested, I may post more chapters. QoH

"How can I love you, B, when I don't even love myself?" His words were hard, cold. But I knew he cared. We had known each other forever. Most of our lives. Jasper was my best friend and at times, much more.

"I just," my words were quiet. "I want you to know, that I do. I do love you. You don't have to say it back. I didn't mean for you to feel put upon." My fingers twisted in cold knots.

Jasper pushed his sloppy blonde hair away from his face. His blue eyes looking down at where I sat on the end of his bed. His face was blank, resembling a zombie, there was nothing going on in there. He was stoned out of his mind. The drugs, so he said, helped him to forget how useless he was. I knew differently though. His family loved him. His aunt and uncle had taken him in when he was younger. His mom had run out on him, for reasons he had never fully disclosed to me. Even though he swore I was his closest friend.

"Look, Bella." He turned his back on me. "You really need to not love someone like me. I am a total fuckup. I have nothing to offer you." His shoulders slumped forward. "Just go home, Bella. Go home. I don't want to do this tonight."

I was fighting the tears. They stung at the back of my eyes and my vision started to blur.

"Please, Jasper, please don't send me away. I want to be here with you. Please, just, don't push me."

He reached toward the bedroom door and opened it, his silent cue that it was time for me leave. I stood, my feet unwilling to move me forward. Instead, I wrapped my arms around him from behind, breathing his scent. Cigarettes and dryer sheets. His posture stiffened, I could feel his ribs under my arms, his breathing halted for a second and I felt him relax into my embrace.

Against all hope, I felt him pull away. I walked slowly around him and turned back.

"You are my very best friend, Jasper. I love you." My keys jingled in the pocket of my sweatshirt. "See you tomorrow."

As I walked down the stairs of his house, his little brother, cousin in all actuality, was coming up the stairs. Edward nodded at me from under his tangled mass of copper hair and I kept going, out the front door, having no idea that it would be the last time that I would see Jasper.

"The day I found my soul, I felt it

Die inside of me, yeah.

So I turn to you; life is

Like that, you know.

I have your face

In a photo in high school,

When you were alive,

But that's all I have.

And I can't remember

Who I was myself, then.

And it doesn't help;

Still I look to you as a friend

To tell me:

Who we are now, who we are.

It's who we are now, who we are.

Where does time go now,

On a wake for young souls?

You tell me,

Who we are now, who we are.

Where does time go now,

On a wake for young souls?

Like a lullaby, you sing:

Oh, ooo. Oh, ooo. Oh, ooo, ooo.

Well, the wind that blows...

It's blowing colder.

And the child that grows...

She's growing older.

And the friends we've known,

They'll turn a shoulder.

The friends we know,

They're growing colder, so...

It's who we are now, who we are."

Third Eye Blind

-Wake For Young Souls-