at their core // alice♥jasper
at their core
Word Count: 2145
Disclaimer: I’m not Stephenie Meyer. I don’t own the series. I don’t want to get sued. I’m just a random fan-girl who likes Edward and Jacob.
I was here with a glass of bourbon in my hand, trying to control my need to hunt – and I certainly didn’t mean the delicacy of mountain lions that quenched my brothers’ thirst. For a brief moment, I let my mind wander to earlier years of my existence – the years that, at this moment, seemed so simple. Life was easy and dependent on strategy, combat and blood. It was a straightforward life for an ex-soldier and was a life I knew only too well. It was probably the intoxication that had me yearning for that easier life, for I knew when I was sober I would come to the realisation that the previous existence was not simple or enjoyable – for the most part, at least. I wouldn’t argue with my desires - I couldn’t.
Human blood. The screams. My ability to feel and empathise with my victims. Past victims, I corrected. I called myself a vegetarian – a ridiculous phrase but rather accurate, in the way of a vampire refraining from slaughtering a room of walking blood donors. Blood donors,
It wasn’t their fault. It wasn’t Bella’s fault. I couldn’t even say it was my fault. Everyone fell to their desires at one point – their instincts, primeval and horrendous at their core but always there and expected.
I made a mental note to avoid alcohol, though it was quickly dispersed from my mind as I took another swig. It was such a useful escape, even for a few short moments.
As I drained the last few drops and surveyed the surroundings, I still found it far too easy to judge the drunkards before me. Arrogance perhaps, but what else could be expected of a man who could easily, without breaking a sweat, cause havoc that the dingy bar could not ever imagine?
It would be only too simple. Surely, the consequences couldn’t be all that bad? The darkening of my irises agreed, begging for that red tinge to grace their presence. I couldn’t dwell on that thought for long, however, as a swift smell of familiarity reached my nostrils.
The one person I really couldn’t face, yet the only person I knew who wouldn’t allow me to wallow in such a state. She didn’t even have to say anything as she took a seat next to me, ordering herself a glass of water – not before asking to see their cocktail list and greeted with a blank stare. Even
There was a never a need to fill our conversations, at least on my end. She was always enough to carry a conversation, to keep my attention with the smallest of gestures. At this moment, though, I wished nothing more for her to remain silenced, but even a mere acquaintance would know that such a thing was impossible for
“You didn’t need to leave, you know.”
Of course I didn’t. I could have just stuck around and helped clean up the bloody mess?
“Edward isn’t angry at you.”
Edward. How was I supposed to face him after nearly trying to tear the throat out of the one and only love of his life? His
“Nor is Bella .. or
“We all know how hard it is, Jasper. You can’t punish yourself for this. It’s understandable.”
I had to laugh at that. It was, after all, a laughable notion.
“Understandable? I didn’t notice anyone else going in for the kill,” I spat out. “Or did that happen after I left?”
I had regretted it as soon as the words had left my whiskey dowsed lips. She didn’t deserve the brunt of my mistake – none of them did, especially not my
“Bella is human,” she began, ignoring my outburst. “You think we don’t all feel that pull, every now and then? We do, Jasper. It’s not just you. Esme couldn’t stick around either!”
“She could control herself enough to leave,” I said, slightly subdued. “She didn’t try and ..” A heavy sigh left my lips as I looked away from her. “It wasn’t just the blood,
Could I bring myself to say it? To tell the one I trusted most and assumed the same of – tell her that I wanted nothing more than to see that silly, human girl limp under my hands? Drained of life, blood and movement? She was a friend and ally - she had brought substance to a brother’s life.
“I wanted the kill,
That seemed enough of an explanation - she didn’t seem to dispute it. It didn’t even seem to phase those pixie like features that I loved so much. I supposed she had expected as much, which didn’t bode well with my already tarnished ego.
“And coming to this dump changes any of that? You need your family,”
I didn’t want her to have to see this side of me, and as much as I wanted to push her away, the selfish part of me wanted to cling to her stubbornly.
“No,” she interrupted, her hand pausing. “I’m not going to sit here and listen to you feel sorry for yourself. Not in this place.” Her gaze flickered from the people who took refuge in the bar on a daily basis, and I could not see any hostility or arrogance in her features, only pity.
“You’re better than this,” she said with a note of finality that could not be ignored. For someone so slight and petite, she certainly had a way to demand notice and gain respect. Even now, during one of my more pathetic moments, there was a sense of hope and optimism – the same optimism I was greeted with when I first met her. It was addicting, though a tad annoying. How could she have so much faith in my own abilities when I seemed to have so little?
I was already on my feet and into the dark street when I realised that she was planning on taking me back home. Her optimism, this time, was a little foolish and not enough to have me follow willingly.
“I can’t go back there, love,” I said, stopping in my tracks. She didn’t have the strength to drag me all the way – the physical strength, at least. She always did have other ways of persuasion.
“I’m not letting you go ba-” but I interrupted her, pressing my fingers lightly against her lips. She had to be able to see from the darkening of my eyes, the rigidity of my posture .. she couldn’t expect me to go walking back to a place where I could do more harm? I needed some perspective, and I certainly couldn’t get that in the living room where I had almost tried to kill Isabella Swan.
For once she didn’t protest being silenced with such a gesture, and instead she looked to me with those wide eyes, full of confusion – and worry, let’s not forget that heart wrenching worry I had filled her with. I repulsed myself.
“I won’t be gone for long,” I told her, my hand moving from her lips and to her waist, pulling her softly against me. Resting my forehead against hers, I wished that the gesture would have been enough for her to just head back home.
It wasn’t, of course. Perhaps with any other woman it would have been a gesture of affection and enough for her to not ask questions, but
“You’re not getting away that easy, you know,” she said begrudgingly, though she eased herself into my embrace. “I’m not that easily wooed by a pretty face.”
I felt her quirk her brow, obviously waiting for me to add something to the conversation.
“Can’t get anything past you,” I said, a soft laugh leaving my lips.
Having a girlfriend with such a ‘gift’ should have been bothersome but it was who
“It won’t be for long,” I reassured, lifting her chin and meeting her gaze. Disgruntlement coated her features, but when my eyes met hers the feelings disappeared – at least from a superficial outlook. “You kn-”
“I know. You wouldn’t go if you didn’t think it was necessary,” she finished. I gave her a look, wondering whether she had taken a look into the future of this conversation. She seemed to understand where I was coming from as she smirked and mumbled something about being ‘so darn intuitive’.
“You do know that I don’t think you need to go? None of us do, if that’s what you’re worried about,” she said, searching my face for some mirrored relevance to her words.
Maybe I was running from my problems, but that didn’t change the fact that I had almost killed Bella. They may have thought that at the last moment I would have backed out – I would have seen the great error that I would fall into my hands, but I knew otherwise. If they hadn’t been there, if Bella had cut her hand and I was the only witness, I knew that the following morning her father would have received the news of her death. It was that simple, which was why I needed to run – to get away from Forks, from my family .. from
“You’re still going, aren’t you?”
My silence was all that was needed for the creases in her forehead to unfold and for her to press her lips firmly to mine.
She was so small, delicate, even waif like in her manner and appearance, yet she had the strength and dominance to command my compliance without hesitation. I knew I would miss this the most, for who knew how long I would be gone. I pressed myself against her hungrily, pulling her firmly against me and prolonging the kiss for as long as possible - memorizing the way her lips moved against mine; the way her body fitted so perfectly against me.
She would be the death of me, though I could think of worse ways to go.
When we finally pulled apart – a lot of reluctance on my end – she didn’t question my actions again. Instead we walked down the dark alley, following the dim light in the distance. Though it was likely headlights from a car, or the reading light in a small household, it set a hopeful aura around us as we walked hand in hand.
As long as I could always come back to this – to her – I knew my existence would not be in vain.