Title: Change in Plans
Characters: Jasper and Edward
Word Count: 4470
Tags: slash, ah, Jasper/Edward,
Prompt: This summer was supposed to be the best: I'd graduated high school. Three weeks traveling through Europe with my best friend. Spend the next several weeks getting a tan on a beach somewhere.
Where do I end up? ER, followed by weeks of being stuck eating horrible hospital food and seeing nothing but godawful soaps on a barely functioning TV.
It can't get any worse.
Or can it?
Summary: Everything was set. Flights and hotels booked. Plans were made. And then everything changed, all because of an accident. How can a ruined summer possibly turn out to be the best one yet?
Disclaimer: All Twilight characters belong to Stephenie Meyer, Little, Brown, et. al. No profit was made and no copyright infringement is intended.
"Bella, would you stop already? It wasn't your fault!" I pseudo-grumbled at her as she sat on the edge of my bed, wringing her hands – again.
That was only half a lie, really. It was because she'd hit me with her car that I'd landed in the hospital with a broken leg – broken to the point where they'd had to put pins in to put it back together again. I tried not to wince at the thought of all of that.
Yes, she'd hit me, but it hadn't been her fault. Her breaks had given out as she rounded the curve going downhill, and I was unfortunate enough to be on my bicycle and in the path of destruction, so to speak. Although she kept apologizing profusely for it, I honestly didn't blame her for what happened. I loved my best friend dearly, but it was starting to drive me nuts.
Especially since she'd just stated she wouldn't be going to Europe after all. It was a trip we'd had planned for the last three years. One we'd worked our asses off to be allowed to go on this summer. Our parents made us work for spending money, and they promised us to pay the expense of the trip itself if our grades were high enough. Which, of course, they were. Determination will get you a lot of places, including the Dean's list.
Obviously, my plans were now canceled. Instead of going sight seeing in Glasgow, Edinburgh, and London, where my family originated from, I could now look forward to staring at the hospital walls, watching bad soaps on an old TV that barely worked... and of course, surgeries and physical therapy. Go me.
'But Eddie-" she started.
I growled. "Just. Stop. Bella. You have to go. Alice has already said she'd go with you, so you're not going alone. This. Wasn't. Your. Fault. So stop punishing yourself already and go. You earned it. Not to mention, I'll feel like complete crap if you stay home just because of me. No, Bells, I won't hear of it. You're going. End of story."
Crossing my arms over my chest for emphasis I glared at her, daring her to argue. She didn't, thankfully. With a sigh, I ran my fingers through my hair before grinning at her. "Besides, if you don't go, who's going to tell me all about the European boys? Or take pictures of the places we were going to visit? I'd hate to see our plans go to waste."
She gave a wan smile at that and started to pluck at the sheets.
"Go, have fun, Bella. And send me loads of postcards, okay?" I tickled her lightly in the ribs, causing her to giggle.
"Alright, alright, I'll go! Just stop, please!" she squealed as I gave her one last tickle.
"Good! Now go home. You have packing to do if you're to catch your flight to London in the morning."
She got up and hugged me tight, sighing, "I'll miss you, Ed."
Patting her back lightly, I whispered into her hair, "I'll miss you, too, Bells. You be careful over there, okay? And have fun. Promise?"
She straightened up with a grin. "Promise. Alice and I will be fine." She frowned, glancing down at my leg. "You take care, okay? Listen to the doctors and stuff?"
Rolling my eyes, I huffed. "Of course. I want those damn things out of my leg as soon as I can. I'll be fine, Bella. I've got the room to myself, so no one's going to drive me crazy."
We talked for a little while longer before I was finally able to convince Bella to go home and pack. She eventually ended up leaving when nurse Cope arrived with my dinner.
Great. Hospital food for the summer...
Bella and Alice set off on their trip the next day, and I heard from them frequently as time passed by. I was doing alright for the most part, and the doctor was happy to see the progress I was making.
The room I didn't have to myself for very long, however, which turned out to be both a blessing and a curse. A blessing, because I was starting to feel lonely, not having anyone to really talk to very often. Sure, my parents visited as often as they could, but they both traveled for their work, and I was alone more often than not. Most of my friends were out of town, too, so I was left to my own devices, so I welcomed a roommate.
Rosalie had also been in an accident, but that was the extent of information she was willing to impart. It took a while for her to open up at all, but eventually the quiet got to her, just like it had me, and we started talking. She was a year older than me, and already in college.
It wasn't until we had shared our room for three days that the curse part kicked in. Visiting hours had just started, and for the first time since she'd arrived, her parents weren't there. Mine were both out of town, so it was just the two of us.
We were talking, wondering what was keeping her parents, when there was a soft knock on the door. We both looked up, and for a moment I thought I was dreaming. In the door frame stood a tall, slender guy with wavy, blond hair that almost fell to his shoulders. On most guys it would've looked too scruffy, but on him it looked... right.
His eyes held a mixture of amusement and concern in them as he looked at Rosalie, and the first thought that crossed my mind was: Figured she'd have him as a boyfriend.
Rosalie had never mentioned dating anyone, nor had she had any visitors outside of her parents. When his eyes turned to look at me, his smile – which had barely been there – widened a little as he said, "Sorry to interrupt. I can come back later?"
He grinned, turning to look at Rosalie as she said, "Jasper! What are you doing here? I told you not to come until you were done with classes!"
Her tone was harsh, but when I looked at her I saw she was happy to see him. Walking over to her, he hugged her carefully and winced as he heard her hiss in pain. "Sorry," he said, quietly.
She waved him off as she settled herself back against the cushions again, then turned to me with a grin I hadn't seen yet. Just as the thought occurred to me that it was remarkably reminiscent of the one Jasper had just shown, she said, "Edward, I'd like you to meet my brother, Jasper. My twin, actually."
Her eyes cut to Jasper as she continued, "Jazz, this is Edward. He was in an accident, too. He's been keeping me company."
I felt the blush creep up my cheeks as Jasper stepped over to my bed and held his hand out to me. "Pleasure to meet you, Edward. I hope she's not been giving you too hard a time of it."
He winked at Rosalie's indignant, "Hey!" and I couldn't help but chuckle as I shook his hand.
"Nah, she's been great, actually. Nice to meet you."
I held onto his hand for a beat longer than would be considered normal, and I blushed when I realized that I didn't want to let go. At all. Ever.
I ducked my head, trying to hide my sudden discomfort. When Jasper cleared his throat, I had to fight the urge to look up at him, knowing that if I did, I would either do or say something stupid. I heard him mutter, "Right... well..." before clearing his throat again and starting to talk to Rosalie.
Sneaking a peek at him as he walked over to Rosalie's bed I watched as he sat down in the chair next to it. I tried not to listen in as they talked, but it was difficult not to overhear things. Especially when Rosalie scolded him again for coming here. Apparently, he wasn't supposed to be back home for the summer for another week.
"Oh, come off it, Rosie. I wasn't about to stay in Texas with you hurt here. I talked to my teachers and arranged things for my finals. I'm fine. Now give it a rest, okay?"
He sounded upset, and I had the strangest notion of wanting to comfort him – defend his honor, even. With a quiet huff, I reached for my book and iPod, deciding to try to get some reading done as I put my music list on shuffle.
It did me little good, as I only put in one earbud as I'd gotten accustomed to doing since being in the hospital – I'd been caught unawares by a nurse one too many times for my liking - so it didn't drown out their voices. Nor did it give me sufficient distraction to be able to read; meaning I ended up staring at the same page for the remainder of Jasper's visit, who only left once nurse Cope came to chase him out, citing visiting hours were over.
That night, Rosalie kept giving me odd looks, but she didn't say anything – and I certainly didn't point it out to her. I had no idea whether she knew I was gay, and even less of a clue on whether her brother was. All I was certain of was that he was absolutely gorgeous, protective, caring, and very loyal – at least, from what I'd been able to gather from their talk.
Part of me wanted to ask her about her brother – to find out everything I could. At the same time, I was dreading the idea of him coming to visit her again. It had been difficult enough to control myself this time when all I'd wanted to do was touch him, engage him in conversation just to hear him speak. I hadn't done any of it, of course; I wasn't a total idiot. But I'd wanted to.
God, how I'd wanted to.
Over the next few days, a routine of sorts developed. Rosalie's parents would drop by every other day as they both had to get back to work now that Jasper was able to be with her. Jasper was with her every single day, for every minute of the allotted visiting hours.
It. Was. Torture.
Sheer, and utter, torture.
He would always bring her something to cheer her up. Flowers, a book, a movie – he had brought a portable DVD-player with him on his second visit – magazines. Even a bag of yarn and some needles. Most days he'd have a little something for me as well. A deck of cards, a bag of M&M's, a puzzle – they all made their way to me.
To say I was stunned would be an understatement. When I asked him why – after stuttering my thanks, of course – he shrugged and said, "Rose told me you don't get many visitors. Figured since you have to put up with my sister twenty-four-seven, I owed you at least something."
He laughed, ducking as Rose flung a stuffed teddy bear at his head as she growled, "You ass!"
The kindness he showed me made things even more difficult for me, because I couldn't bring myself to hide behind a book anymore. Both he and Rosalie always tried to include me as much as possible in their conversation, and I couldn't be rude.
At least, that's what I kept telling myself. Truth was, I liked the fact he kept engaging me. I started to live for the times where he'd show up with something for me as well as his sister. It was never anything spectacular, and there was no special meaning behind any of it – nothing that ever gave me any indication that he was gay or into me.
There was no denying that I had fallen for Jasper, and fallen hard. I both wanted to kiss and curse Bella for putting me in the hospital in the first place. The few times I'd written to her about Jasper, I'd gotten teasing postcards or e-mails in return.
The worst thing was, my mom noticed something was going on. During one of the days she was actually home and able to come visit, I'd introduced her to Jasper. They both were friendly and he was as charming as I'd ever seen him, and it was all I could do to not stutter and blush – though I'm not sure I managed to curtail the latter much.
Thankfully, Jasper took Rose out for some fresh air a few minutes later. Well, I say thankfully, but that would be debatable. It was good in that Jasper was no longer there for me to make a fool of myself in front of. It wasn't so good in that it left me alone with my mother.
Almost as soon as she was certain they were out of earshot she turned to me with an arched eyebrow and watched me. She didn't say anything for a solid minute, which was the longest I was able to take her silence.
"What?" I mumbled, crossing my arms over my chest protectively; averting my eyes so I wouldn't have to see the look on her face anymore. As far as my parents were concerned, I was still very much in the closet and I had no intention of changing that status any time soon – well, not until I was at the very least away in college... and maybe not even then.
If possible, her eyebrow had arched even higher when I glanced back at her, though the rest of her features were perfectly calm – and was that... humor, reflected in her eyes?
"Nothing. They both seem very nice, is all," she said quietly.
There was an air of anticipation around her that I found unnerving. I began plucking at my sheets, not quite able to meet her eyes as I said, "Yeah, they really are."
Mom moved to sit on the edge of my bed, facing me, her hand resting on my knee as she looked at me. "It's very sweet to see how Jasper looks out for his sister," she hedged.
A smile formed, quite against my will, as I nodded. "Yeah. Jasper's great." I wished I could keep the wistfulness – the longing - out of my voice. Hopefully she wouldn't notice.
I looked up at mom through my eyelashes and almost wanted to crawl under my bed to hide when I saw her eyes roam over the things that now occupied my nightstand – each and every one of them had been given to me by Jasper.
"He seems a very considerate young man. Did he bring you these?" she asked as she grabbed the stuffed lion he'd given me the day before – to keep me company, he'd said.
My heart began thudding in my chest as I nodded, unable to speak past the lump in my throat. It took me several tries before I managed a quiet, "Yes, ma'am, he did." Taking the lion from her, I crossed my arms over it, hugging it to me – I couldn't have stopped myself if I'd tried.
"And he's here every day to visit?" she hedged again.
I nodded. "Yeah, he never leaves Rose's side." The pride and awe I felt were apparent in my voice – to me, at least.
"A very sweet boy," she murmured, adding, "and quite handsome, too."
"He's fucking gorgeous," I sighed, then looked up at my mom in shock, mouth gaping as I tried to say something. Anything to take back what I'd just said, and not just because I normally never used that kind of language in front of my parents, either.
"I...I-" I stuttered, my face blazing with heat that I could feel all the way to the tips of my ears.
Mom merely smiled and patted my knee gently, making quiet shushing noises in an effort to settle me down again. "I know, sweetheart," she said simply.
Her eyes were compassionate and kind as ever as she watched me take several wavering breaths before I pulled myself together enough to be able to speak, though my voice was hoarse and shaky at best. "Y-you know? How? Why-?"
The grip I had on my lion tightened, needing the comfort it gave me. I stared at my mother, incredulous that she knew my secret and had never let on. She quietly explained that both she and my father knew I was gay, but that they'd wanted to wait for me to be ready to come to them.
"Of course, I hadn't quite expected it to happen like this," she admitted with a grin. She squeezed my knee and added, "I just couldn't bear to see you like that, sweetheart. To have you hide away when it's obvious you like him."
I blushed again and burrowed my face into the lion's mane with a groan. "Mo-om. Can you say that a little louder? I don't think they heard you at the nurse's station," I whined.
"Sorry, dear," she said, blushing a little. "I'm just happy to see you've found-"
My head snapped up at that. "I haven't! I don't even know if he's gay, Mom! Even if he is, Jasper's just a nice guy..."
My tone was harsher than I'd intended and I cringed at the hurt look on mom's face. "Sorry, Mom, it's just..." I shrugged, resting my forehead against my lion again.
Silence hung between us for several minutes, and I wished she was right even as I was certain she wasn't. There was just no way that I could ever be so lucky as to have a guy like Jasper fall for me. Something like that simply wasn't in the stars for me – it couldn't be. Because if he did, he'd have said or done something to indicate it, wouldn't he?
Finally, mom gave a quiet sigh as she patted my knee. "I'm sorry, sweetheart. I shouldn't have assumed..." she paused, giving me an apologetic smile. "I just want you to be happy, Edward."
"I know, Mom. Thank you... you know... for..." I shrugged, unable to say the words, but the way she smiled at me as she leaned in to hug me and kiss my cheek told me she understood.
She settled back on the side of my bed, holding my hand. We sat like that for a little while, quietly talking about anything and everything. Once the shock had worn off, it actually felt really good to finally be able to talk openly with her about things. I'd always hoped she would be accepting of me once she knew I was gay, but a tiny part of me had been afraid, too.
The relief I felt now left me feeling elated, almost to the point where I'd all but forgotten about Jasper.
Until he walked in, that is.
The moment he pushed Rose into the room in her wheelchair, both mom and I turned to look at him, then shared a brief glance between us. I silently urged her not to say anything, and sighed in relief when she squeezed my hand and gave the tiniest nod.
Rose started talking to mom as if nothing had happened, but I could tell by the look in her eyes she knew something was up. I also had the strangest feeling that there was something going on that I wasn't aware of, too. Especially when seeing Jasper's frown, though he quickly smoothed his features when he noticed me watching.
Both he and mom had to leave not long after that, since visiting hours were over, which left me alone with Rose. For the first time in a while, it was uncomfortable, as I couldn't shake that nagging feeling from before.
Rose put in a DVD of Will & Grace and picked up her knitting, settling herself in to watch for a while. Every now and then, she'd cast a glance my way, but other than a "Is everything okay?" she didn't give me any indication of what was going on.
Sleep didn't come easy that night, and I felt tired the following day. The morning started off as always, with the usual check ins and P.T. and whatnot. Things didn't start feeling off until visiting hours started again.
Rose's parents showed up, taking her out to the gardens for some fresh air. Mom would've already left again for work, so I wasn't expecting anyone and had just settled in with my music and my book when there was a knock on the door.
To say I was surprised to see Jasper standing hesitantly in the doorway would be an understatement.
"Jasper? Rose isn't here, your folks took her outside."
He nodded, glancing down at his feet as he did. When he looked up again, he was frowning, his eyes searching mine. "I know. Mind if I come in?"
"No, of course not," I said, putting my things on my bedside table and gesturing for him to take a seat.
My confusion must've been clear on my face, because Jasper gave me a small smile as he sat down after moving the chair closer to me. So close, that if I were to stretch out my arm, I could've touched him. The thought of that made me blush, and I was grateful when Jasper chose that moment to look at his folded hands.
"Is everything alright, Jasper?"
He cleared his throat and nodded as he leveled his eyes with mine again. The vulnerability in them shocked me into silence – as did the words that came out of his mouth. "No... yeah... I-..." he huffed, ran his fingers through his hair and tried again.
"I'm fine, Ed. I just... I needed you to know that I like you... I'd hoped you'd already figured that out, but I guess you didn't and that's fine because I hadn't actually said anything outright when I probably should have and-"
He continued rambling for another minute, but I was still stuck on the first bit. He likes me? My heart started beating faster as more words began to filter through the shock and it started to sink in that he'd been giving me subtle hints for several weeks now. That my lack of response had made him wonder whether he was imagining things and worry that he was wasting his time, but that he couldn't stop himself from falling for me – just like I had been unable to stop it from happening to me.
I was about to interrupt him when he said, "...and when I overheard you and your mother last night as you came out to her.. heard how you came out, I just-"
My cheeks flamed red as I stuttered, "Y-you... no... no, oh God... you heard... everything?"
Jasper blushed, too, his hand reaching out for me, but he stopped himself and rested it on the bed instead. Inches away from my hand. As embarrassed as I was, part of me wished he'd move it to hold mine, and that made me feel even worse.
He cleared his throat, his words almost stumbling out one after the other as he apologized. "Yeah, sorry. Rose had forgotten to bring her knitting and asked me to go get it for her. I was just outside when I caught what was going on between you and your mom and I just... I couldn't move. Couldn't do anything. Was rooted to the spot when I heard you tell your mom... I'm sorry, I know I shouldn't have eavesdropped... I should have let you know I was there, but..."
Sitting up, I reached out to him. He stopped talking at once as one hand came to rest on the back of his neck, my fingers playing with the curls in his nape the way I'd dreamed of doing so often. My other hand found his, and I entwined our fingers as I looked into his eyes, amazed at the vibrant blue that stared back at me.
Heart beating so hard and fast that it felt as if it were trying to escape my chest, I leaned closer to him, smiling when I noticed his pupils dilate and his breathing hitch. It made me feel bolder, braver and more forward than I'd ever been in my life.
"Yes?" he said, quietly, his eyes darting between mine.
"Could you please stop apologizing now and kiss me already?"
A slow grin formed on his lips as he murmured, "I think I can do that."
With that, he closed his eyes and closed the distance between us. The moment his lips touched mine, my heart started beating double time and I thought I might just have to pinch myself to make sure I wasn't dreaming. Never in my wildest dreams had I imagined Jasper feeling this warm, this tender... or to taste so amazing.
When he wrapped his arms around me, pulling me closer – or as much as he was able to, given the awkwardness of the hospital bed and the height differential it caused – I felt like I'd just come home.
He pulled away to look at me with a brilliant smile, cupping my cheek as he said, "Will you go out with me, Ed?" His smile turned to a grin as he added with a wink, "As soon as you get sprung from this joint, that is."
Butterflies were set loose in my stomach, but I nodded vigorously, smiling widely. It was only another week or so, and I couldn't think of anything better. He laughed quietly at my reaction and leaned in for another kiss.
It was Heaven.