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Flaws

Summary:
We've all got our flaws.

Jasper/Maria


Notes:
First Twilight fanfiction I've ever written. :)

(Hopefully it will go through this time, because it kept on getting rejected for improper line breakage? Oyy. Third time's a charm!)


1. Chapter 1

Rating 5/5   Word Count 1156   Review this Chapter

There is very little that can make Jasper lose his cool—well, very little besides human blood and the idea of Alice in danger. But the thought of someone has never frightened nor upset him, and certainly running into an old acquaintance shouldn’t bother him at all. But catching sight of Maria, he feels the first surge of panic that he’s felt in a long time that actually comes from within himself. He’s always so busy feeling the emotions of those around him that, sometimes, he forgets that he’s completely capable of feeling things on his own.
And this… this is a situation that makes him feel very wrong.

She approaches him with such a swiftness that’s he caught off guard, somewhere between ready to spring away or launch in attack—I won’t go with you, I won’t go with you. The memory of his former lifestyle haunts him; were he able to sleep, he’d probably have nightmares of it. Blessedly, though, he’s able to push it from his mind.
That is, of course, when there isn’t a reminder of it standing right in front of him.

For some reason, he’s thinking of Alice in Denali; he’d opted out of that little trip, instead driving down to L.A. (the forecast was unnaturally cloudy, and the last time they’d been, Alice had her eyes on an expensive handbag, and he wanted to get it for her). He wishes he hadn’t. He really wishes he hadn’t.

The silver phone buzzes in his pocket.
Jasper ignores the insistent vibrations.

“Jasper Whitlock.” The use of his former name surprises him. He’s Jasper Hale, now; he’s part of the Cullen family. He’s not a bloodthirsty menace, he’s not a ruthless killer. He’s Jasper. He’s a husband and a brother and a friend.

Her breath smells of blood and it makes him groan faintly, ever so faintly.

Their eyes meet, gazes locking as the rain starts to drip down—this is a lesser populated street, something he’s infinitely grateful for at the moment—and he’s surprised at their clarity, the bright icy blue. He was expecting burgundy, and knows, behind the contacts, that’s what is there. But the blue makes her look less dangerous, less sinister.
It is easier to trust blue eyes.

“Jasper, Jasper, Jasper.” She reaches up, brushes a droplet of water off his nose. It seems the phones buzzing is intensifying with her every action.

Pick up, pick up, it cries.
It sounds like Alice.

Suddenly, he steps back; it’s a quick and jerky motion, not at all his usual graceful self. And as he pulls the cell phone from his pocket, which she gently removes from his grasp despite its outraged buzzing protests, she’s speaking as though he never left. Her words were casual as she begins walking, and he feels compelled to follow—she has his cell phone (though he could easily acquire it again) and… he’s curious as to what she might have to say.

“I thought you died—you were always so miserable towards the end; being in the same room with you was unbearable.” She laughs, and it’s contagious, bringing a faint smile to his lips. “I figured when you ran off, you found someone to end it for you. Then I heard about the newborns, up in Seattle, and the Volturi figured it was their duty—“ she scoffs at this part, obvious disgust in her voice “—to check in on us as well. They didn’t mention your name, but I knew it must have been you. Never could resist a fight, could you?”

He looks surprised for a moment, surprised that she knows and surprised that she thinks something like that. “I left because I was sick of so much death and destruction.”
“But old habits die hard, do they not?”

She could not know how true her words are.

He doesn’t protest as she turns off the cell phone, silencing the ringing voice that had been begging him to answer. She looks at Jasper, slips it back into his pocket, and asks, “Would you like to go hunting?”

He’s torn in two. He can still smell the blood on her breath, and the idea of hunting enflames the ache in his throat instantly. He tries to focus on Alice, tries to think of how very wrong all of this is, but it’s hard, hard when Maria’s lips are brushing against his ear as she whispers, hard when her small hand rests on the small of his back and directs him down the dingy alleyway as though they’re walking through a park.

“No.” He finds his voice suddenly and yanks away. In a very human gesture, he puts his head in his hands and tries to take deep, calming breaths; of course, this increases the hunger. The scent of the woman in the tiny brick apartment is so strong, it’s like she’s practically next to him. He opts for not breathing instead.

“Jasper.” His hands lower and she rests her hands on his cheeks, thumbs stroking the skin gently. “It’s okay, Jasper.”

It’s not okay. He knows it’s wrong. He knows that, as he inhales deeply, he won’t be able to resist unless he leaves; yet… he cannot compel his feet to move.

“She’s all yours, if you want her.”

--

The blood is sweet. It feels like honey soothing a sore throat, like heroin to a junkie—he doesn’t care what it feels like; he just knows it feels right.

In the other room, he hears the woman’s husband’s voice rise.
Maria silences him in an instant.

--

His fingers tangle roughly in her hair. Jasper wants to hurt her, he wants to rip her throat out, he wants to make her cry. He settles for kissing her, all force and no love, not at all careful with his teeth or how hard his hands pull. He hates her, he hates her, he hates her.

“This is the Jasper I know. This is the Jasper that’s alive on the inside.”

If that’s so true, then why does he feel so dead?

In an instant he shoves her away, so hard that she cracks against the door and it breaks off its hinges. All she does is laugh, laugh and watch as he furiously yanks his cell phone from his pocket, holding down the button to turn it on. Twelve missed calls. Three new voice messages.

The phone buzzes again.

This time it’s at his ear before he has a chance to think otherwise, eyelids closing over burgundy irises.

“Jasper.”

The voice that breathes his name this time is softer. Alice knows. He knows she knows, and he knows she isn’t angry. He can hear her soft, uneven breathing, and he knows that she’s hurt. Hurt and betrayed and probably much more than heartbroken. Honestly, he wishes she was angry.

Alice speaks again, voice soft and uncertain.

“Please come home.”
He falters. “Was there ever a chance that I wouldn’t?”
She doesn’t speak.