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Jasper winks. [b "You are on the best possible pain medication you could get. The first day you were here, you kept mumbling about gummy bears and dolphins. You've been high as a kite since you got here."] He doesn't tell her that he had been the one to push for the strongest medication they had. He didn't want her in any pain.
[b "As for the bear, I think Emmett was dropping it off at your house. Rose wouldn't let him keep it in their room. She said it kept staring at her. He said it barely fit through the window. Charlie doesn't know he snuck in, so just tell him you got it before you left,"] he teases.
When the subject turns to the video camera, he shakes his head, making his curls bounce. [b "Bella grabbed it, but didn't want to watch it in case you had protests about it. And I've been here since they brought you in, so I haven't had the chance. I don't know if I want to, if I'm being honest. I saw you in pain in person, I don't wanna relive it on TV. But, if you want to watch it, it's at the hotel. I can tell Bella to take it back to Forks."]
He's desperate to turn the conversation to something else. [b "I'll have you know that I've had to use the showers here since I refused to leave. And they're not exactly up to date with working locks. An elderly woman walked in on me and kept stalling before I got her to leave. Just know that while you were set up here with all the morphine and oxycodon you could possibly want, I was being oggled by a woman old enough to be your grandmother. I have suffered to make sure you're taken care of properly."]
[i "Well I'm sure she's bragging to all of her friends at bingo right now,"] Renee's voice hits his ears.
Turning, he smiles politely at her, rising up from the bed. [i "Oh, honey, don't worry about it. I'm not here to make sure you guys keep it pg."]
[b "...Probably how I would have felt if I'd actually gotten hit by that van months ago. Seemed the karma of it caught up with me, huh? Sorta fuzzy too, but I assume that's cause I've been sleeping a while and probably am on some really good pain medication too, aren't I?"] Her words were blunt with a slight edge of playfulness still, but then she gave that inquiry near after. It was almost rhetorical all things considered so if she did or didn't get an answer she wouldn't mind either way. And it was moments later as he gently brushed back that hair from her face that she'd lean slightly into the soothingly cool touch of his icy, marble-hard skin.
Her expression became very soft and compassionate as he apologized for apparently not getting to her fast enough, but before she could have the chance to say anything he had gone on to mention the gigantic teddy-bear of a vampire that was none other than his brother Emmett. She snorted softly, shaking her head a little form amusement, [b "I'm not surprised if he did pout about it. It seems like him, and I'll need someone to carry it for me since I doubt I'll be able to even if I was completely physically able to right now. I trip and run into things enough with be able to see where I'm going."] She giggled a bit with as much as a radiant smile she could manage her still slightly groggy state, but near the same instant she winced as it jarred nearly all of her injured ribs. It wasn't a bad thing that they got jarred since they had all started healing enough to not have to worry about, but the jarring still hurt her chest a bit.
The pixie-like brunette's smile returned full as he interlocked their fingers and raised her hand to kiss her knuckles, and she shook her head in a way that could only be described as fond a she said what he did. [b "There's no one I'd rather be stuck with, Whitlock. No one else in the world."] Her voice was playful yet again but it had also been just as honest and warm as his had been.
Alice considered asking Jasper about James, but decided that for the time being the information could wait. For the current time she just wanted to enjoy the peace and calm with the blonde.
After a few moments a thought suddenly entered her mind—well more of a memory—and her eyes would flutter a couple of times with an expression of surprise crossing her features before she'd look up at him. [b "You all took that video camera from the ballet studio, right? Did any of you think to watch it yet?"] Her question was curious as she shifted her positioning slightly on the bed as much as she possible could without having to use anymore than her currently one-good leg.
[b "I'm not the one who bragged to my mother about how amazingly devastatingly handsome I am,"] he mutters to her, opening one eye once Renee had left the room.
He wants to scold her for being playful when she's in such serious condition, but he has to admit, he's immensely grateful that she hasn't lost her humor despite the trauma. Sliding the blanket off of him and sitting up, Jasper moves to her bedside, sitting next to her on the thin mattress. [b "How are you feeling?"] he asks, brushing back a lock of hair that had fallen and gotten tangled in the oxygen tube.
It had been killing him to sit there while she was unconscious, unable to help her in any way. Carlisle had told him that he had saved her life, and he should be proud of that, but all Jasper felt was misery that she had been placed in danger, despite every attempt he made to keep her safe.
[b "I'm sorry I didn't get to you sooner. I shouldn't have let you out of my sight,"] he looks down with a guilty frown.
Edward and Bella were still texting their apologies to him, both feeling terrible for what had happened under their watch. Jasper had given them the cold shoulder for the first few days. His parents had done what they could to convince him that he should speak with them, but it wasn't until Esme had grabbed his ear and hauled him outside where his siblings were waiting that he let himself forgive them.
[b "You know, Emmett got you a teddy bear to make you feel better. But, the nurses made him take it back to the hotel because it's taller than you are and took up too much room. He pouted all day after that,"] he looks at her with a faint smile, interlocking their fingers.
Raising her hand, he presses a kiss to her knuckles. [b "I'm not going to let you out of my sight now. You're stuck with me, Swan."]
Half of a week. The Swan girl didn't know this, but she'd been unconscious for half a week.
Her mind was a haze and she was so confused. Flickering fire, darkness, burning pain, soothing sensation, and one of the last things she remembered seeing before her vision had gone black was a blonde, immortal Whitlock male. In the moment a dream danced behind her eyelids. Or... was it more than a dream? It seems so real and it was of her and the same last-remembered-seeing male but suddenly her eyes were fluttering, she felt achy, and she released a groan from her minor discomforts that pain medication simply wasn't able to keep at bay.
[#bf0d39 "Alice? Ally, baby, are you awake...?"] A gentle voice asked, and though it took a few long moments of struggle her eyes would fully flutter open to slowly focus on the face of none other than Renee. [b "Mom? Where... where am I? I don't...."] Alice's voice trailed off, she looking blearily around the room until her eyes focused on a sight she never thought she'd see; Jasper laying down on a sofa with his eyes closed, under a blanket, and apparently sleeping. [i He's gotta be faking. He said he can't sleep! But... what happened?] Her thoughts began to wander, but then she snapped her attention as quickly as possible back to her mother as she felt the sensation of a hand smoothing hair back from her forehead.
[#bf0d39 "He got here on the second day, just an hour before I got here. Drove down with one of his brothers I believe. And I can see why you like him, sweetheart, he is exactly like you described."] Renee teased in a gentle whisper, and Alice blushed a furious scarlet in the cheeks for she knew that the southern-born vampire in the room undoubtedly heard every word. Of course he mother didn't know that and simply thought her daughter was embarrassed, and simply chuckled in amusement while brushing her finger's through her daughter's hair once more.
The mother and daughter chatted for a few minutes, Renee explaining all that had happened. Or, at least, the story the Cullens had provided for the hospital and the police to know. Her friend—who's name was apparently now Lacy Albertson and the pixie-like female could only guess that one of the vampires had gone out and paid someone to pretend to be Alice's proposed "troubled friend"—had come to the hotel that she'd apparently been staying at with Esme, and Alice had been walking down the stairs to meet her before tripping, falling down a flight of stairs, and going through a second-story window to falling to mixture of ground and bushes. Esme had called Charlie, and Charlie had called Renee, and the rest was history.
She had also apparently been in a medically-induced coma for the past five days since she had five cracked ribs, two broken ones, a broken leg, a concussion that had put some hairline fractures into her skull, and glass cuts on some various parts of her body. From what she could see of herself she saw her hand in particular, one she known that James had bitten, was wrapped up so that must be one of her her "glass cuts." Currently she had an IV attached to the back of her uninjured hand, she had bruises, and she had gauze still wrapped around her head , and a cast that felt oddly itchy against the flesh of her broken leg.
[#bf0d39 "I'm gonna go get your father and Phil, alright? And a nurse to check you over."] Renee would kissed Alice's forehead tenderly, and before the girl knew it her mother was out of the room with the door clicking softly shut behind her.
Alice would huff a sigh, letting her eyes drift closed and despite her throat feeling dry she would call out in a soft voice, [b "I know you aren't possibly asleep Jasper. And I swear if you tease me about my mother making me blush you'll be the one in the hospital bed."] Despite her voice being weak and slightly hoarse from misuse, the bluntness and naturally playful sass that was just naturally 'Alice!' rang forth proud and true.
Jasper and Emmett had gotten to the ballet studio before the others. The boys don't even think to check for witnesses before booting in the door, and following the trail of blood scent. Jasper's eyes turn black, but not out of blood lust. Seeing James crouching over Alice as she cries makes a growl rise in his chest. [b "Emmett!"] he orders.
The larger brother bulldozes James over, sending him across the room. Kneeling by Alice's side, Jasper grabs her face in his hands, still-heart sinking at the sight of pain in her eyes. He knows there is venom in her system. He can smell it. Still, she tries to make light by being playful. [b "I'm sorry Ma'am,"] Jasper says in return.
A hand comes down on his shoulder, and his father is there to take over. [i "I need your belt,"] he orders the younger blonde.
Jasper wastes no time in handing the item over. [b "Bella, help him."]
Noticing the look in his brother's eye, Emmett steps out of the way. Grabbing James around the middle, he wrestles him to the ground, snarling and wrapping a hand around the tracker's throat. [b "You should have left her alone,"] Jasper leans close to growl the words.
While he has the man pinned, Emmett and Edward both grab an arm and pull, ripping the pieces from his body. James howls in pain, his legs slamming against the floor in an attempt to get away. The legs are next, leaving him limbless. [i "Fuck you,"] he spits the words at Jasper, only to be rendered silent when the Hale boy rips his head from his torso.
[i "Jasper! We need you!"] Carlisle's voice is urgent.
[b "Burn him,"] he orders his brothers, hurrying back to his ailing girlfriend.
[i "She'll change if we don't get the venom out."]
Jasper holds her hand, brushing her hair out of her eyes. [b "Focus on me, alright? You're safe now."]
[i "Jasper!"] Carlisle's voice breaks through the fog. [i "You need to act now, or there'll be nothing we can do.
He looks desperately to his father. [b "What do we do?"]
The doctor looks at him seriously. [i "The venom must be sucked out. And you need to do it. Bella is the youngest of us here. I don't want to test her by putting her through that."]
The blond balks. [b "And you think I can get through that?"]
[i "You're around her more than any of us. You've fought the temptation all this time. You won't hurt her, Jasper. I know it."]
He fights with himself only long enough for her to cry once more. [b "I'm gonna make the pain stop, okay? You'll be alright."]
He lowers his mouth to the bite and tries to ignore the taste of her blood as he tries to vacuum out the poison. It's the most difficult thing he's ever had to do. He can't even help when the taste of the venom goes away, and he stays latched to her. [i "Jasper, enough. Son!"] Carlisle yells to get his attention.
When he pulls back, her blood trailing down his chin. Alice's eyes drift closed and he panics. [b "What's happening?"]
[i "She's been through a lot. Her body is shutting down to avoid shock. We need to get her to a hospital. I'll call an ambulance,"] Carlisle excuses himself, reaching for his phone.
The blonde wanted to have fun with this, and rather the pixie-like Swan girl wanted to know why or not, she was discovering the reasons he had become obsessed with her. Jasper and all the Cullens having reacted the way they did is what helped spur him on, yes, but it apparently wasn't only the apparently intoxicating scent of her blood that made him so obsessed.
Impossibly, it was because of him having seen Bella and Edward in the clearing.
It had been 1993, and at barely nineteen and, according to James, Bella would have been his prey if she hadn't been hit by a car and was then swept up by 'that copper-haired pretty boy' and changed into an immortal. This vampire standing over her really was obsessed with hunting game, he truly was, for he had looked into the once-upon-a-time-was-human Bella's medical and federally documented history to try and find any living family.
He'd found out she'd been adopted and that Bella's birth mother had been named Mary Campbell that had been a teenage mother that put up the girl as a babe to be adopted. It taken him eight years, but by 2001 he found all information of Mary Higgins [i nee] Campbell—[#7a7e10 "Old already, so she wouldn't be much fun to mess with"]—and found out she had another daughter named Renee Higgins that she'd raised, and that the daughter had a little girl of her own. The child had been four when he'd found the two long-lost relatives of his 'Hit and Mist Prey' of Isabella Brandon, and the sadistic immortal male proceeded to observe the mother and daughter duo. The child had apparently even sweeter smelling blood than her now vampire of an aunt she would (likely) never know existed had ever possessed. Times by thousands in the enticing department, as the blonde and red-eyed male had put it.
He continued to watch the mother and child, until a full year had passed. He had created rumors of a serial killer in the state the two lived in, and finally he made his move on a Halloween night.
In October of 2002, there had been a 5 year old girl who had escaped a killer recognized by leaving behind 'fake' bite marks on his victims, and she had always been the only known survivor. That child wouldn't have been a survivor, however, if there hadn't been the one-in-infinity chance of another vampire having been in the area to save the child from becoming James kill. James had waited twelve years now to find that child again, and now that she was in his clutches he would make the most of it. That's why he recorded it, for he never wanted to forget his most elongated game that had all started with his failure to kill Bella roughly twenty years prior.
Mary Alice Swan, known as Alice Swan, apparently was not the only member of her family that had an affinity for attracting vampires. She survived the one currently enjoying his plotting to slowly kill her once before, having been saved by another who just happened to be in the area, and apparently she was related TO a vampire that barely looked even older than herself but in reality should have been in her early thirties, and was apparently an elder half-sister her mother
Apparently she really is a magnet for the supernatural, dangerous, and insane, and Alice was just really thankful all of this information was on tape for after she had pepper-sprayed James in the face and he'd thrown her across the room she doubted she might be able to remember every detail considering the consequence she got for trying to escape.
Her head was bleeding and she could barely see straight now, let alone think that way either. Nonetheless she was able to pull up some of her minimally basic-medical knowledge to know she must have just been granted a rather harmful concussion. If she fell asleep she'd probably slip into some sort of coma. To be completely honest that seemed like a rather wonderful though... to be void of pain on a conscious level.
Especially since her her leg was cruelly broken just moments after the though. No one could blame her from screaming out a sob of pain, but no matter how much the sadistic hunter standing over her demanded her to beg—on a video recording of all things!—for her supposed 'protector' to avenge her and not stop until his vengeance was achieved, she refused to comply. She would not become a puppet for his twisted game any further than she was already tricked into being.
But suddenly the face of Death was gone, and looking down at her was none other than the reoccurring angel who always saved her over, and over, and over again from either the brinks of mental break-downs or physically life threatening times.
[b "You kept me waiting."] Alice barely whispered this in a pained voice, then giving a strained smile as a moment later she was scooped up Jasper's his arms.
Jasper had reached his limit of frustration over the past few days. No matter how late they were out, or how far they searched, they couldn't find any trace of where James had gone to. They'd searched as far as the next state over, and still came up with nothing. Emmett had been forced to calm him down several times over, promising that they'd get him before he got to Alice.
Carlisle and Esme had held up their part of the job, and had spent almost every waking minute watching Charlie from afar, ensuring that he was safe at all times. Jasper kept in constant contact with them, exchanging texts to be sure that everyone was up to date with news. He'd done the same with Bella and Edward.
By the end of day four, he had started missing Alice like crazy. He'd messaged her as well, telling her as such, and promising that he'd be with her soon. When Emmett suggests they call off the search, he agrees, but the four remaining Cullens decide that it still isn't safe. An extended vacation away from Forks would be their next solution.
Jasper sat behind the wheel of his car, sunglasses pulled over his eyes as he and Esme drive to the hotel. Emmett and Carlisle had been forced to take the Jeep since Emmett's hulking body wouldn't fit in Esme's little Jaguar. She had done her best to keep her son's spirits up, reminding him that he'd be with Alice soon.
They had not been anticipating an anxious Bella waiting for them in the lobby. [b "How could you have lost her! She's a human being!"] Jasper yells once they're safe in the hotel room.
[i "She's a tiny human being that sneaks around like a cat!"] Edward replies, feeling embarrassed that he had failed at his job. [i "We're sorry Jas. We'll find her."]
Jasper ruffles through the room, trying to find any hint of where she might have gone. [b "What have you done, Alice?"] he murmurs sadly.
That's when his eyes catch sight of the scrap of paper. Picking it up, he recognizes the work of Alice's drawing skills. A ballet studio. She hadn't disappeared after all. But it still didn't mean she wasn't in danger. Leaving them a clue could only mean that she was going to need their help. [b "My girl is smart, I'll give her that,"] he breathes with his eyes closed, hurrying back to his family to get them ready to go.
The soft kiss to her cheek had made her brown eyes flicker back open, and with a shaky breath she'd raise her hands up to wipe away the few tears that stained her cheeks. [b "I know. I trust you, Jazz."] Her words were strained despite being sincere, and she'd glance over at him with a tight smile before she'd return her attention to staring out the windshield once more as he began to drive off.
When they get to the Cullen home she follows behind him with her backpack on her shoulder, and once he says the things he does she can't help but grin in a way that had the slightest bit of eased tension in the expression as she replied, [b "All things considered, shouldn't you want me to give Edward and Bella a hard time? They've been trying to embarrass you in front of me since the first moment they spent any time alone with the both of us."] Her words were murmured, her smile becoming a bit more genuine as she'd look up at him whilst the vampires that made up the rest of the Cullen family finished getting ready for the temporary separation of their little clan.
Alice would hesitate a few moments, but she'd soon shift up to her tip-toes and peck her lips against Jasper in a brief, slow kiss that held her fear, unease, but trust and care in him all the same. It was second later that Bella gently separated the couple and said that it was time to leave.
And just like that Edward and Bella of the Cullen clan where whisking Alice Swan off into the night to somewhere deemed safe from what was currently trying to kill her.
[h3 Four Days Later — February 18th, 5:49 pm]
She had been gone from Forks for four days now. She talked with Charlie nightly and constantly made up false stories of how her 'friend that needed her help' was doing. The brunette hadn't heard from her mother, which had worried her, but figured that Charlie might have learned from the last time he alerted erratic, hair-brained mother about a situation their teenager was in and didn't want his poor child to be constantly bothered.
It was an hour and a half prior to the current moment that she'd been at a hotel with Bella and Edward. She had been sleeping through what had apparently been a nightmare, Bella waking her up and telling her to pack up cause Edward and her would be waiting the lobby so they could all head to the airport. James trail had been lost, so Jasper and the rest of the Cullen family were heading down so they could all head somewhere safe for awhile. This had been found out late the night before, and Alice was anxious to see Jasper again.
But it had changed with a phonecall on her cellphone. James had her mother, and he gave her a location on where to go. She wasn't to bring any 'friends' with her either. So with a quick thought she had grabbed pencil, a piece of hotel stationary, drew the image from her nightmare onto one side, and an address on the back of the paper. She left that sketch on the nightstand, grabbed money, and then managed to sneak her way past Edward and Bella, grabbed a taxi, and began the hour drive to head close to her destination. For the past half hour she'd been walking the last of the travel to the place she was heading, though.
It was almost twilight. The sun was low on the horizon and the Arizona sky was lovely shades of orange, pinks, purples, and peach hues as the faintest showings of stars began to speckle the sky. The Swan girl used to love looking at the sky at night, and in these moments it was her only comfort as each step she took brought her closer to her certain demise.
[i I've never given much thought to how I'd die. Even with how many times I almost have in life, I never really thought about it. But... dying in the place in someone I love seems like the perfect way to go, though.] These were her mournful thoughts, a sad smile on her face as the sky began to become more and more black, and it was once the sun fully set that the short female removed her chocolate-brown gaze from above to looking in front of her.
Sherry's Ballet Studio. She definitely never thought this would be where she'd die, though when she had been ten she'd whined to her mother that taking ballet lessons was killing her.
Alice slowly walked up to the front entrance of the building, her hand grasping the handle as she stalled briefly. Her eyes closed, she wondering if the sketch she'd left would be found, and while inhaling a slow, deep, but shaky breath she would open the door and head into the building that would likely become her death-bed.
It was risky if Charlie didn't accept her story, but Jasper had to at least let her try. [b "Alright. Do what you have to do,"] he tells her, giving her hand a light squeeze of support.
Listening to her quickly inform Charlie of the pretend situation was rather impressive, to be honest. She didn't falter once in her story, though Jasper could feel her emotions rising at the thought of leaving her father. He can only hope that she'll trust them to keep him safe.
When she rejoins him shortly after, he presses a soft kiss to her cheek. [b "Everything will be okay, alright? I promise. I'll keep Charlie safe."]
The drive to the Cullen residence is tense, but Jasper is still determined to get her as far away from Forks as physically possible. Though he doesn't want to leave her at all, he knows that Edward and Bella will do everything in their power to keep her away from conflict. Because of his past, Jasper is the best candidate to stay behind with Emmett to hunt for James. He's almost as good as the tracker himself, and his combat skills are more advanced than his siblings. It's not a past that he's proud of, but it's going to come in handy with this situation.
As they pull up to the house, the garage doors are already open, and he can see Edward and Bella loading the Volvo. Helping Alice out of the Nissan, he holds her hand as they walk inside. [b "Edward and Bella are going to take care of you, alright? I'm going to keep looking for James. It'll be better if I'm the one who takes care of it. That way they can keep you out of trouble,"] he tells Alice as he pulls her aside. [b "Just don't give [i them] any trouble,"] he adds with a sad smile.
Him giving into her beg on allowing her the chance to know for sure her father should be considered safe caused her the first relief since what began in the clearing about ten minutes prior now, and she huffed a faint sigh as at least a little of the tension left her body.
[b "I'm going to tell Charlie that a friend down in Phoenix is a danger to themselves, and threatening to do something to themselves, and that I need to head there as soon as possible,"] She paused as the car sped over a bump on the last of the dirty road off of the mountain, they then upon the pavement that composed up the highway, [b "I'm gonna tell him that Esme offered to drive down with me since she's a stay-at-home woman, after I got a call that made me panic while at your house and explain to you all what was happening. Give me Esme's cell number, by the way, cause Charlie will probably want to call her for confirmation at some point if not right away."] Her words were matter of fact, and considering she apparently came up with the idea on the spot it had to be a little bit impressive despite the anxiety the certain reality of the world around them both was causing.
It was within minutes of having Esme's number now programmed into her phone, and soon enough she'd be rushing into her house with Jasper's vehicle idling in the driveway.
Her time spent inside of her home were agonizingly long minutes that were almost too long, yet also too short, for her personal comfort since Charlie had, indeed, called the Cullen-clans mother figure immediately to confirm that his daughter wasn't attempting to lie to him and go elope with Jasper or something. Alice was surprised her lying had been successful—for usually she was easier to read then items in a clear plastic bag—but soon enough she was hugging her father goodbye. He told her to be careful, and she promised him that she would while trying to hide the vocal lump in her throat, and then upon kissing her father on the cheek once she'd leave out the front door, rush down the driveway back to the Whitlock male's care, and promptly got into the passenger side with she slamming the door shut behind herself.
She had one of her two only purses over her shoulder and now clutched in her lap as she pulled on her seat-belt.
The pixie-like Swan girl didn't say anything as Jasper would no doubt pull out of the driveway.... She didn't do anything other then staring at the car's dash with a forcefully calm look. It was only once the sight of her father's home was out of view that she'd close her eyes with a couple of hot tears trickling down her face. No one could blame her for shedding those instinctive, watery-salty devils in reaction to the stress of what was all happening to her though.
[b "Carlisle and Esme can keep an eye on Charlie. We won't let him be in danger. You know that, Alice,"] he looks to her, hoping that she trusts him.
Still, she persists, and he sighs. If he forces her, there's a chance she could grow to resent him. He has to at least give her a chance. At least with him around, she will be safe while they do whatever plan she has in mind. [b "Alright. What do you have in mind?"]
He just hopes whatever it is, it's not going to be something too dangerous. As much as he loves his girlfriend, he's not going to be willing to do anything that will be too risky for her. He'd rather her be alive, and hate him, than dead.
The car twists and winds through the trees, faster than is probably safe if it were a human driving. Thankfully, his reflexes allowed him to drive with precision. [b "I won't let anything happen to you. I promise,"] he takes her hand, raising it to press his lips against it.
When they come to a fork in the road, he pulls one way, and his family goes the other. He slows his car as Emmett's Jeep does, both rolling down the windows to talk. [b "We'll be back shortly,"] he murmurs, knowing his brother will still hear him.
[b "When we get to your house, you need to pack a bag. It doesn't have to be much. Just enough to last a few days, while we figure things out,"] Jasper tells her, turning in the direction of the Swan residence.
His stomach knots as his head starts turning strategies over and over in his head. He didn't like fighting, but if it's for Alice's safety, he'll kill James.
The Cullens had formed an almost protective barrier around her as they had ushered her to the car she and Jasper had driven up the mountain in, but the moment the door was open and he ushered her into the passenger's seat the other vampires of the family zoomed to their vehicles, started the engines, and took off without barely enough time for their cars to warm up properly.
The Swan girl had adrenaline pumping through her veins as fear lingered heavily in her. That sensation of cold dread was no longer as strong, but it was doing something it had never done before and that was linger on the edge of her sense to the point that she was already starting to have quite a bit of high anxiety.
She wrapped herself up tighter in Jasper's coat as he began to drive the car at racing speeds down to ground-level and back towards the Cullen home, and in these moments the brunette was looking smaller than her already petite 5"0' solid of height. She had burrowed herself into the coat as much as possible in order to comfort herself, and her face hidden by the hat she kept on her head. The male's arms driving her to safety couldn't wrap around her due to the fact he was driving, so wrapping herself up as much as possible in his lent jacket, baseball jersey, and hat was the next best thing.
Suddenly, she gasped with realization as a horrible thought struck her mind. [i Charlie!]
[b "Wait... my father. I can't just leave! What about Charlie?"] Alice exclaimed her eyes widening in panic. [b "If it's my smell that James guy is after wouldn't that be one of the first places he'd go before actually hunting me? Whatever smell I have would be all over the inside!"] Her expression became desperate, she looking to the blonde male as if trying to plead her case in a practically whimpered voice, [b "We can't just leave with him in danger, Jazz. Please. There has to be something."] She'd reach her hand over and wrapped the slim digit on the small limb loosely around the Whitlock boy's wrist closest to her.
She'd stare at him in silence while awaiting his answer, and whether he had answered or not it be a few long moments into her silent waiting that a spark of thought would happen in her mind. [b "...I have an idea. Well, actually, I have two. One would hurt Charlie and one wouldn't, so I hope the one that won't hurt him will work cause I refuse to do the other one."] Alice would look at him eye to eye, a begging look on his face for him to give her this.
Jasper feels the mixture of hunger and lust and immediately turns around, gnashing his teeth together as James makes an aggressive move forward. The two blonds are practically chest to chest, with only Laurent and Edward separating them. [i "How considerate of you to bring a snack,"] James sneers wickedly.
[b "Make one move towards her and I will rip you apart right here,"] Jasper isn't intimidated.
[i "Enough of this. We didn't come to fight. Come, James. We have overstayed our welcome,"] Laurent tries to mitigate the tension before things get worse.
Rose, Bella, Esme, and Emmett all stand protectively around Alice. While the largest Cullen brother would have loved to have been at the front of the fight, Jasper is grateful that he'd thought to protect Alice. He continues to stare down James as he's tugged away, feeling the anger rise in the tracker's system. He wouldn't be phased by the red eyes. He had destroyed far worse vampires than James could ever hope of being.
Still, he isn't about to let Alice be in the middle of this. When they are alone in the clearing, he turns back to his family. [b "We need to get her out of here."]
They usher the human girl to Jasper's car, as they all return to their vehicles. They floor it back to the Cullen home, eager to get Alice to safety. [b "You have to leave,"] Jasper says, fists tightening on the wheel. [b "Just until we can make sure that they are gone. Bella and Edward will take you somewhere outside of Forks while Emmett and I search the area around Forks."]
The moment the others in the group had picked up on the scent is when that line formation had been made, but Bella and Esme had moved to be by the pixie-like female, in front of her and hiding her from view as much as possible just in time before the trio of unfamiliar vampires burst into the clearing. Alice felt light-headed, resisting the urge to gag and faint as she could slightly smell the remaining residue of human blood on the air.
The trio of vampires stood there with those almost eerie smiles, but as the practically ebony skinned one stepped forward he seemed to relax just slightly from his tensed state, and his actions became less like the others. It appeared, in a way, he might be the only sincere, sane, and civilized of the group, and now appeared to be the leader.
[#94724c "We don't mean to intrude, but we heard your game as we were leaving the territory. My name is Laurent, this is Victoria,"] He nodded towards the redhead and then titled his head towards the blonde male in his group, [#94724c "and he is James. I believe this ball is yours?"] The black vampire held up the baseball, twirling in his fingers a few moments before tossing it at the line of Cullens about five feet in front of the two vampire females and the one human female.
The blonde leader of the family snapped his hand up in such a way that Alice hadn't even noticed the movement, but had heard the connection of baseball meeting stone-hard flesh. [#0086eb "Thank you. My name is Carlisle, and this is my family; Edward, Emmett, Rosalie, Jasper, Esme, Bella, and Alice. Our youngest. Forgive us from hiding her from view, but we're naturally protective of her."] He had gestured towards all of them in pairs while speaking, no wanting to signal anyone out to greatly. Bella and Esme shifted more in front of Alice, making sure she was as shielded as possible from the view of these unknown immortals. There was no moment more that she wished the Whitlock male was beside her, but he was currently in the apparent defensive line so she couldn't really have him by her right now even if she wanted to.
[#94724c "I have never created another vampire myself, but I believe that protectiveness is indeed understandable."] Laurent replied with a slight tilt of his head, and then clapped his hands together with an honest grin, [#94724c "Now, if it wouldn't be too much trouble, any chance you could use a few more players?"]
[#0086eb "We were honestly about to pack up for the day."]
[#94724c "Oh, come now. Not even one game? It's been so long since the three of us found enough more of our kind to do any sort of sport."]
[#0086eb "...I suppose it wouldn't hurt, then. A few of us were about to leave anyways."]
Before the Swan girl knew it Jasper was at her side and Bella had begun to move towards the rest of the group, so that apparently meant the couple and Esme were going to be 'the few of use about to leave' group. It seemed, just possibly, that there wasn't going to be any set backs. That Jasper wouldn't have to worry about his fragile human.
But then, of course, the damnable wind returned once more and blew a strong gust the opposite direction. Billowing Alice's short hair from where it was under the hat and giving the other vampires easy access to a part of her that couldn't be hidden no matter how hard the Cullens did their best to hide her completely from physical view.
That part of her was the scent of her blood.
The game is stopped when Jasper freezes, with nothing but dread and anxiety filling him. He's almost brought to his knees before he realizes that it's coming from Alice. Faster than he's ever moved before, he's by her side, calling her name. Her expression is dazed, and her eyes are glazed over like she's not even looking at him.
Suddenly she's grabbing for his jacket, and he doesn't hesitate to cover her with it. [b "Alice, look at me. What's going on? Just take a few breaths."] Jasper's tone is nothing but concerned.
Esme kneels beside her, hands holding on her to shoulders. She, too, is trying to calm the girl, whispering words that she hopes soothe the fear coursing through her. Jasper tenses as he holds her hands, when the new scent hits him. Who the hell is that?
Rising to his feet, he stares at the trees, eyebrows coming together in a scowl as his fists tense up. [i "Jas?"] Edward comes to stand next to him.
Before Jasper can answer, three figures come quickly out of the treeline, coming straight for them. [b "Who the fuck are they?"] Jasper growls under his breath, not needing to see their eyes to know that they are red. He can practically smell the blood they'd last feasted on.
Emmett, Carlisle, and Rose join them in the lineup, all standing firm. The three strangers come to a stop a few feet away, eerie smiles on their faces. [i "No need to stop on our account,"] the female speaks first, looking at each member of the Cullen family.
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