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I stalked the halls of Forks High School like the predator I was. The humans around me shrank out of my path, instinctively frightened. I had no control over my emotions today; they roiled through me like waves pushing past rocks. Wearing me down, bit by bit.
In a way, it was worse now than it had been when she first arrived. Back then, I had known what to expect. I was used to the turmoil. The pain was there, the craving was there, inescapable, unavoidable…but I was able to resist. Because I knew the terrible consequences of my failure. Guilt, ruin, exposure. The look in Alice's eyes when she saw me break. Her pity and her pain would destroy me. It always did, every time I succumbed to the weakness.
A fight broke out behind me. I heard two human children scuffling with each other, felt the excitement of the crowd as they surrounded the pair. I knew that it was my fault. The disquiet in my soul was pouring out of me like toxic fumes. It permeated the hall, turning the children into a mob of pulsing, throbbing angst.
A boy and a girl were locked together at the lip ahead of me. The boy's hands on her hips, squeezing her flesh. His lust was beyond his control. She reciprocated, her thighs trembling with the urge to wrap around him, grind up against him.
This, too, was my doing. I spread anarchy in my wake. Here, the effect took a different form, but the root cause was the same.
Ever since last Saturday he had been a twisting, writhing mass of need and want. He still thirsted; her blood still sang for him like a cantata of hunger. He still feared and anguished and felt overwhelming guilt for his weakness.
Weakness, bah. If I was in his place, I would have succumbed weeks ago. When she first sat down next to him and her scent touched his nostrils. It was bad enough to deal with his parched thirst secondhand. Alice watched me anxiously, tracking my every mood, my every movement.
For her, I could resist the agonizing craving that Edward felt for Bella's blood. All I had to do was imagine the danger that I would be putting her in if I succumbed.
Alice. My angel. My rock.
Unfortunately, Edward's yearning for her blood was now joined by his desire for her body. Ever since he took her to that meadow, when he felt her skin, touched her lips, endured her caress, his long-dormant seventeen year old body had been awakening. And today, it had reached the point where his two desires were virtually equal. He craved her on two fronts, and his resolve was weaker than ever before.
I avoided him as much as possible. He knew why I kept to the room I shared with Alice, and the guilt and shame in his eyes just made it all the worse. I gladly rode in Rosalie's car this morning, unable to bear the thought of riding with him. Not that we were invited, now that Edward was picking her up every day.
Still, I was a powder keg being rolled down the hall of this school, spewing violence and lust and spitefulness to everyone around me. I was beyond blocking them out – the volatile emotions of the children around me. Instead, I was turning their burning insecurities, their secret desires, their petty differences back upon them tenfold.
Up ahead, amongst the throng, I saw her. The cause of all this agony. She reached up and tucked a strand of her long chocolate-colored hair behind her ear. The Newton kid was at her elbow, talking to her about something characteristically stupid. Her discomfort was evident in her downturned gaze, her stumbling feet, but he didn't notice. I, on the other hand, could feel her embarrassment coming off of her like solar flares.
I suddenly realized that I wasn't even heading towards my chemistry classroom. I was stalking down the hall towards Alice's history class.
She was there, slinking through the crowd, her eyes on me. The lust I was trying to repress roared up inside me. Off to my right, a boy and a girl holding hands stopped in their tracks and gazed at each other. Their fingers locked together and they moved closer, searching each other's eyes.
Without a word, Alice took my hand and led me through the seething crowd.
I could practically smell desire on her. She must have seen something. Whether it was a vision of her and me, come to life when I subconsciously headed in her direction, or something to do with Edward and her…it didn't matter. She led me to an empty classroom and together we locked the door.
"What do you feel?"
Her hands were already on my shoulders, pushing my jacket down and off my arms. I lifted her up and her legs wrapped around my waist.
"Hunger," I rasped. I kissed her hard and fast. Her mouth yielded to mine instantly.
"Hunger for blood?" She questioned when I was able to release her.
"Yes. No. Hunger for her. To worship her. To possess her." I pushed her against the door, feeling her body against mine. She gave, as only she could. Nothing else in the world felt like her.
"What else?" She held my gaze steadily. This was a familiar exercise. Almost like a purge. It kept me from going insane. Alice kept me from going insane.
I wet my lips. "Fear," I whispered.
"Fear of what?" She reached between our bodies, gathering the hem of my shirt and slipping her hands beneath it. Calming, and at the same time inciting.
"That he won't want me. Her. That he won't want her. Both of them feel it, I think. Her more than him."
"They are uncertain of each other's feelings."
"Is that the only fear?" She knew so well the complexities of human emotion. That the fear was rarely clean-cut. She knew because she had helped me to sort them out a thousand times. To understand, and therefore to resist.
"No. There's always fear. Most of the time I can't make out what it's about."
"Does she fear that he'll hurt her?"
I closed my eyes, concentrating on the sensation of Alice running her small, sensitive fingers over my skin. Abs, pecs, shoulders. "No. That's his fear. He's afraid to lose control."
I smiled a little. "Embarrassment."
"He's embarrassed by his weakness for her. What else?"
I gazed at her, seeing the flecks of brown and gold and ocher in her eyes. "Desire," he whispered.
"Both of them?"
"Yes. It's very strong."
Alice smiled at me knowingly. She delicately fingered my nipples, flicking them with her nails. I swallowed, fighting to keep my eyes open and focused on hers.
"Is it as strong as what I feel for you?" she murmured.
"It's different. It feels…fragile. Uncertain. They're both afraid of it. They approach it like it could hurt them. But still, they can't resist it."
"Are you afraid I'll hurt you?" she whispered, raking her nails down my body, towards my stomach. I shivered.
"Yes," I breathed. We both knew that my fear was not really of her, but a reflection of the drama unfolding around us
"Is it an exciting fear?" She leaned back against the door, withdrawing her hands from under my shirt. I hitched her up so that she could rest her weight on my shoulders, then released her waist. Searched under her skirt and pulled her panties from her legs in one clean motion.
"Yes," I groaned. "Don't hurt me."
"I would never hurt you," she said fiercely, and levered herself up to stare into my eyes. "Never. Hold on to that. Don't let it go."
"Okay." I was breathing harshly now, the dichotomy of Alice's protectiveness and Edward and Bella's uncertainty roiling around in my brain.
"Make love to me," I breathed. Asked. Begged. I needed the solace that her body brought me, the overwhelming love and tenderness that only she exuded. And only for me.
"Yes." The word was little more than a breath. She held herself up and away from me just long enough that I could unbuckle my belt and release myself from beneath my jeans. Her eyes searched mine, plumbing my depths, searching for my weaknesses. So that she could chase them away.
"Say it," she breathed. "Please."
She arched her neck, tipped her chin up. I tensed, recognizing this gesture. This was where she sank down upon me, taking me in with one fluid motion like water rippling down a mountainside. She was hot, tight, strong as only one of our kind can be. I had never and would never feel anything that compared to Alice's body around mine.
"You drew me," I murmured, burying my face in her neck. "I could feel you in that city. I felt your pull and moved towards it."
"I waited for you forever," she replied, raising herself up slowly, oh, so slowly. "I saw your face and burned to be with you."
"The first time I saw your face, I thought I was dying," I groaned as she sank down upon me once more. "I didn't know that such joy could exist. I was sure it would destroy me."
"You looked at me from out of the darkness, and lit my way," she barely mouthed the words, but I heard her. I always hear her.
Over and over, she pushed up, then fell down upon me. With every sweet draw of her body, I gave her the words she needed. Told her how she changed me, how she washed away all those decades of blood and carnage. Of being manipulated, used. Feared by those around me.
My words made her love bubble up inside her and break to the surface. She gloried in my adoration, and reflected it back upon me threefold. The blinding heat of her burned away the shame and the guilt, the fear and the terror around me. I could sense nothing beyond her.
This was why I had sought her out. When she made love to me, she freed me from the anarchy that ruled me.
She was gasping now, taking me fast and hard, her body seeking and seeking and then bursting into blessed release. Her nails dug into my shoulders and her heels locked behind me. Her climax was like a pulse of light and heat through my tortured psyche.
I tumbled her to the ground, covering her limp body with my own. Now she lay still, accepting, instead of giving. I lifted her knees high and pushed into her, deep where no one but me had ever been. This was my place, that dark, secret part of her that she revealed only to me.
I was close, so close. My skin seemed to stretch and burn over my muscles, and I arched into her, pounding her hard, so glad that she was strong enough to endure it. She stretched her arms over her head, long and lean and deceptively small.
"I love you."
I shattered, my psyche broken into a thousand pieces. I ceased to exist except as an extension of her, made to serve her and protect her and love her. She tightened around me once more, and I marveled that I could give her this. Her pleasure fed mine until we were nearly senseless, the brightness bursting into prismatic colors behind my eyelids.
I rolled over and gathered her close, pressing her head to my throat.
"Better?" she whispered.
"Much." I kissed the top of her head. "You make it go away."
I felt her smile against my skin. She nipped my collarbone gently and I groaned, hugging her soft-hard curves around me.
"So much for American History," she murmured. "I was really looking forward to Mr. Osgood's take on the Civil War."
I snorted. She loved to needle me about my age.
"I had a vision of Edward and Bella earlier," she whispered.
"I don't want to hear it," I rolled my eyes. "Those two are killing me."
She sighed softly. "Just come find me, and I'll put you back together."
When we emerged into the hallway, everything was calm.
The children were all safe in their classrooms, the tornado of emotions having died down. It seemed unnaturally quiet, like the aftermath of an explosion. I walked Alice back to her history class, twenty minutes late. On the way back to chemistry, I passed the room where Emmett sat, pretending to pay attention to his English teacher. He alone heard me as I walked quietly past; he gave me a thumbs-up and a leer.
I couldn't even glare. All the fear, all the anger and sadness and pain was a muted backdrop to what she made me feel.
She did that for me.
Thanks to all who voted for this story! I had a great time writing it. By the way, did anyone notice that the name "Jasper" is not mentioned at all in this fic?