A/N: Thanks to SadTomato for the prompt and MeraNaamJoker for her red pen.
Prompt: Carlisle and Jake spend time alone together after the newborn battle, when Jake is wounded and Carlisle is the only doctor that can see him. What do they talk about?
I could smell him long before I could see him. Even through the pacing, hulking wolves waiting powerless in my dad's front yard. His sickly scent, tinged with the sourness of hospitals, drifted in and turned my stomach.
That smell always made me think of Bella. How she ended up saturated in its cloying sweetness; an apple dipped in toffee. I wondered briefly how they smelled to her as the scent grew stronger, triggering twitches in my torn muscles as the wolf tried to push through me.
I felt my throat constrict, instead, and vomited copiously on the floor.
I must have blacked out for a few seconds, because when I came to his gold eyes were weirdly wrinkled in worry as he bent to push the hair back from my wet forehead. I tried to roll away, and moaned as my broken bones, half fused with brittle, misaligned joins, popped open.
His hand jerked back with my screams.
"I'm sorry, God, I'm sorry, Jacob."
I stayed on my stomach, the only comfortable place I could find, and stared at the pool of sick. My body throbbed; it seemed to emit pain like a burn gives out heat.
"I... I need to examine you. It seems you have some broken bones, and with your accelerated healing I have to put them... back into place."
I groaned a little. I was fairly sure this was going to be unpleasant.
"I have morphine. I'm going to give you some now."
I wish I could have said that I told him where to go, or fought him off, or stopped him sticking me with needles, but truthfully the thought of something to stop me hurting was just too fucking good. I hardly felt the scratch as the canula went in; just the cold push of the drug into my arm.
Thirty seconds later, I could speak, and thanked him. Fuck knows what it sounded like to him; although I felt coherent, his smirk implied otherwise. He was far too beautiful to be human, and I wondered again how people didn't see, didn't sense that there was something not right with them.
"I'm going to start on the biggest bones and work down. Well, down in size, as actually the longest bone in your body is the femur - uh, the thigh bone - so I'll be working up, but..."
He trailed off as he saw my amused, stoned grin, and scolded himself.
"Yes. Bloody get on with it Carlisle. Quite so."
He reached tentatively to my leg. I was still naked underneath the sheet that had been pulled over me for modesty (as if I gave a rat's ass) when the boys had carried me in, which I guess helped him in his work. So gently he felt along my thigh, his cool palms and fingertips probing for breaks. He closed his eyes when he found them.
I wasn't expecting it to hurt as much as it did. As he pulled my thigh down and straight, I felt my face wet again with tears, listened to my own begging for him to stop touching me, please, fuck, stop.
His jaw was clenched, and his eyes looked agonised as he pulled again, and I both felt and heard the grinding as the fragments of bone slotted together.
As soon as he was finished, he held his hands up, backing away as I growled and sobbed and tried desperately to rein myself back in to a place where I was in control of the pain, and not the other way around.
When he took a step forwards again I began crying in earnest. His sorrowful expression as he set my pelvis, ribs, collarbone and wrist was blurry, but at least it gave me something to focus on.
Afterwards, he sat with me, pushed some more morphine and wiped off my face with a wet washcloth. He was whiter than I remembered; and sadness pushed the lines on his face into greater relief.
"I'm so sorry you had to go through that, Jacob."
He wrang out the cloth, before stroking it over my chest.
"If only I'd been watching more closely... had seen that loner hiding away... and if only the bloody Volturi hadn't kept us so long, killing that poor child..."
I'm not sure how, but through the fog of drugs I forced out "Bella?".
He laid a hand on my unbroken shoulder. "Fine, she's fine." He paused. "Worried sick about you."
I wondered if the pain of losing her would be worse than breaking half my body. It seemed like a commensurate amount, but that was before she arrived, running in and kneeling next to me, pushing her fingers into my hair and making my chest ache.
Carlisle vanished, and for the first time I felt truly grateful to one of them. I wished I'd been able to thank him. Despite the awful rebreaking, my body felt far better now; more balanced. Right.
Wide brown eyes captured mine, as she bent her head to kiss me.
"Jake... are you in pain? How are you feeling? I'm sorry, Jake, I'm sorry."
Her lips brushed my temples and I could feel warmth seeping through. No matter what she smelled like, nothing could hide that; the life in her, the moving blood and breath and imperfections. She was here, and whole. I smiled.
She wrapped her arms around my broken body.
"I love you, Bells."
"I know. I know. Until my heart stops beating, right?"
I couldn't do it. I couldn't shut her out forever. All or nothing was worthless if I would lose her. I'd fought on the same side as him today, I'd been healed by Carlisle.
Maybe the future wasn't black and white; either or; alive or dead. Perhaps it was grey, and compromise, and pain.
I took her hands and encased them in my own.
"Maybe even then."