The Sunshine Train
John F. Kennedy said once that the courage of life is often a less dramatic spectacle than the courage of a final moment; but it is no less a magnificent mixture of triumph and tragedy. A man does what he must, in spite of personal consequences, in spite of obstacles and dangers and pressures, and that is the basis of all morality.
I couldn't agree more.
Courage was the reason I was here. Courage and love. We know Edward and Bellas story during Twilight, but what if it was different? What if Alice was the new girl, and Bella was already a vampire? Would Jaspers self-control hold out when he meets a girl whos blood smells so intoxicating to him? Mostly AxJ, all canon pairings. Thank you so much to MoonSpinner for the amazing banner!!
Read on and enjoy. Disclaimer: I don't own Twilight, and i never ever ever will :(
2. Open Book
Rating 5/5 Word Count 5212 Review this Chapter
"Tis torture, and not mercy. Heaven is here
Where Juliet lives, and every cat and dog
And little mouse, every unworthy thing,
Live here in heaven and may look on her,
But Romeo may not."
I never fail to be astounded by the naivety of the human race. The pure and unadulterated trust they excel into the world around them, falling for any lie as long as it is well told. Falling for the lie of a beautiful face and a dazzling smile. Never believing that something is wrong, something is dangerous just because there has been no proof.
Even now, sitting in an insignificant classroom, surrounded by insignificant people, staring and completely insignificant cracks running through the plaster down the length of the ceiling, I can't help buy wonder why? Why don't they notice that every time a breeze blows their scent just a little to close to me, my jaw muscles lock, and I stop breathing completely. Why every time I'm forced into close proximity with one of them, I stiffen, not daring myself to move, not even a nanometer.
The answer is easy enough; because they believe the lie. The lie of our species, programmed into our genes from long ago, like a tiny voice in the backs of their minds, a heartbeat slowly beating out the rhythm; trust-me, trust-me, trust-me.
Or maybe it's not that, maybe somewhere, deep down in the genetic codes of these American teenagers, something, their fight or flight reflex perhaps, is warning them to stay away. But it's so long buried beneath the modern-day gossip of lip gloss and fast cars, of who did what at whoevers party, that they no longer pay it any heed.
Almost as though she could tell what I was thinking, but purposefully chose to ignore it, a perfectly normal girl sauntered past me to her seat, looking in my direction, licking her lips, and swishing her long hair in my direction, bombarding me with the sweet scent of hormonal human. If I hadn't been distracted, trying to rein in the instinctive predatory monster that dug it's claws into my mind, I would have raised an eyebrow in amusement. But I'm too busy swallowing the mouthful of venom that flooded my mouth as her scent hit the back of my throat. I wish now, more than ever, that one of my siblings was sitting next to me. Even just having one in the same room would be fine, would be reassuring. But they're not. English is the only lesson I am truly alone with my monster.
We're reading Romeo and Juliet; a book I have read so many times that I could recite the whole thing backwards in Spanish if someone asked me to. Not that anyone would, that's the most absurd request I've ever heard. But at least it would make this dreaded lesson pass just the little bit faster, would distract me so I didn't get the overwhelming urge to kill every time I opened my mouth.
I leant back in my chair, teetering on the back legs, phasing out the insufferable droning that was my English teacher, not even pretending to follow the lesson. I focus instead on the sounds outside the classroom; the teachers in the rooms next door, the girls smoking in the toilets down the corridor, a heartbeat that seemed out of place. It wasn't being slowed by the boredom of the lessons like the heartbeats surrounding me. It was getting faster, pounding so hard I wouldn't be surprised if it burst right out of the body encasing it. I winced slightly at the image, the heartbeat growing closer and closer, until it was nearly pounding in my ears. I opened my eyes, and saw a girl hesitating outside the classroom door, clearly fighting an internal battle about whether or not she should enter the room. I observed her, out of boredom more than actual interest – this must be the infamous new girl that Edward had mentioned. Apparently her face had been circling round most of the student bodies minds all day. Being unable to read minds like my sibling, this was the first time I had actually seen her.
She was tiny, pushing maybe 5'3 at a stretch, her short dark hair sticking up in every direction, like she'd run her hands through it repeatedly. Her eyes were a startling shade of violet-blue, her cheekbones were high and angular, her nose was small and pointed. She looked like a pixie that had stuck its hand in an electric socket.
She took a deep breath and opened the door, and gust of wind blowing in from the corridor, blowing her scent directly towards me. I froze. To say I had never smelt anything like it would be a dramatic understatement. It was exotic and new, intoxicating, and it hit me like a full on hurricane. At that moment, the walls of humanity I had carefully erected around me during the past 80 years, fell away, leaving me with not even a shred of humanity.
I barely had time to focus my scattered thoughts, before I registered that she was walking towards me. Of course I thought, the only free seat in the room
Her smell was slowly intensifying, growing so strong that I didn't dare breath, I didn't even dare move. I knew that if I let one tiny ounce of my concentration slip, she would die. It would be quick, taking less that a second for me to reach over and snap her neck. I could do it quickly, no one would even notice.
My hands fixed themselves around the bottom on my chair, making deep grooves in the cheap plastic, trying desperately to focus my thoughts on something, anything else.
I hadn't moved since she entered the classroom, and for once I didn't care that my behaviour must seem odd to the clueless human. The back of my throat was burning, her scent having wafted up my nose when I wasn't even breathing, the venom pooling over my tongue. I didn't even dare swallow, worried that that would somehow kick my teeth into gear, and I wouldn't be able to stop myself.
But it was all in vain. I could feel it looming up on me, I could tell that I couldn't hold on very much longer, that she would be dead very very soon. Confusion and terror was spilling off her in waves, surrounding me. I felt so guilty that I was the one causing her to feel this way. I was nothing if not a gentleman, and had always treated woman with nothing but respect, as long as the didn't get to close to me.
Her chair shifted very slightly, stirring up the air, as she moved as far down the table as she could, to get away from me, leaning very slightly into the isle. That wouldn't help her if I attacked, nothing could.
Very suddenly she jerked, as though something hit her, and was flung back into her chair. Her eyes glazed over, her face paled, and her whole form began shaking very slightly. Confusion overwhelmed me more than the blood lust for a fraction of a second, and I studied her for as long as I dared. Something was definitely not right. She let out a loud gasp, panting for air as though she'd just run an marathon, her eyes went frantic as though she was searching for something, before something invisible hit her again, and again, each time knocking into her tiny form so hard, I thought she might break in half.
Emotions were pouring out of her, but these ones weren't caused by me, in fact I didn't think she could even remember where she was. Terror, confusion, understanding, curiosity, fear, sorrow, pity, anger, terror again. Emotions you never feel all at once from the same person were engulfing me, surrounding me. It was hard to believe that someone so small could hold so much emotion, but I was focused on just one. Understanding. And I got the sinking feeling that I was involved somehow.
She knew something. Something terrible concerning my family. A single tear ran down her cheek, as her eyes refocused, and she looked at me desperately.
My eyes met hers, and my hunger returned ten-fold, I pushed myself out of the chair, and sped towards the door, speeding down the corridor as the bell rang in my ears.
From that day on, the week only got worse. My only glimmer of light in the darkness of High School, was the fact that I remembered to set my alarm 2 hours early, so I couldn't risk oversleeping again. Isaac was late home on Monday night, and I didn't expect to see him on Tuesday morning either, but I didn't mind-I'd much rather keep to myself right now.
I used to revel in the attention of others, needing to have friends and people around me to feel complete, to feel like myself. But when my mother died, she left a gaping hole in my heart, that no one came close to filling. I wasn't expecting to find any close friends in this tiny town – and my experience yesterday had shown that there was no one here I would even want to be friends with. I didn't fit in, in this place, my energetic demeanor, and my unusually loud voice paired with my tiny figure, were strange and unknown to the people of Forks.
It was raining when I awoke on Tuesday morning, which dampened my spirits even further. I longed for sunshine, for bustling crowds, for huge shopping malls and ice cream sundaes. I longed for a friend I could shop with for hours, someone I could confide everything to, someone who would be there for me, Someone understanding, who wasn't superficial – something I'd discovered lots of people in Forks were. I was feeling so low, that I didn't even pay attention as I got dressed, pulling on black jeans, and a white ruffled shirt. If I spent too long in this town I would forget how to dress fashionably.
I drove to school with plenty of time, and sat in the parking lot at school, watching my windscreen wipers flutter helplessly against the torrential downpour outside, trying and failing, to wipe the windscreen clear for long enough for me to see clearly. I gave up, and turned to my side window, and squinted, watching people arrive and park around me. I saw Mike and Jessica a few cars over, and pulled up my hood, ready to get out and greet them. As I stepped from the car, I caught sight of the muddy Jeep I'd parked next to yesterday, it drove past me,the spray of water from its tyres narrowly missing my legs. I watched as it parked in the space across the lot from me, and watched 4 figures climb gracefully out. Even though the rain was blurring my vision to much for me to see anything, I could only think of one family who moved with such delicate ease.
I peered over my shoulder at them, squinting desperately through the rain, trying to catch sight of the blond head I wanted to see so badly. But although I could see Rosalies bright blond curls, there was no sign of Jasper. I watched as the four of them, as they put up umbrellas and the boys slipped their arms around the girls waists, but there was still no sign of him.
I was turning away, when a sudden, but dreadfully familiar feeling crept up on me, starting with a painful prickling in my fingers and toes, and before I knew it, I was being catapulted from the darkness of Forks, into a blindingly colorful vision.
I was sitting at the lunch table, toying with a soda can, staring at the Cullen table. Jasper was staring back at me, his eyes bright gold. My finger was circling the metal edge of the can, when pain shot through my hand, as my finger caught on a jagged piece of metal “Damn” I muttered, looking at my finger, which was oozing a bright drop of blood. There was a loud crash in front of me, and my head snapped up just in time to see Jasper leap across his table, his teeth bared in a painful grimace, his eyes fixed on my bloody finger. His siblings were close behind him, their arms reaching for him, as they attempted to hold him back, but they couldn't get to him quick enough. He slammed into me, pushing me to the floor his teeth inches from my face, and -
“No!” I all but shouted, forcibly dragging myself out of the vision, grabbing onto the car door to hold myself up, my legs trembling. I looked up just in time to catch Edward Cullens eyes, they were wide with shock and anger. He said something to the other three, his voice muffled by the pounding rain, and all their heads snapped up to look at me. I couldn't move, I didn't want to. I didn't think I could without falling over. My whole body was shaking violently, and I felt physically sick.
“Alice?” a voice sounded next to my ear. It was Angela, smiling at me, with concern in her eyes, “Alice are you Ok?”
“I'm fine Angela” I smiled brightly, “The cold is just getting to me thats all!” She laughed, gestured for me to follow her as she made her way over to Mike and Jessica.
I smiled and bounced my way through the next three lessons, volunteering answers, talking loudly in lessons, skipping down the corridor, anything. Anything that I could do to make myself feel normal, but I couldn't shake the feeling the vision had given me, a feeling of foreboding, of oncoming danger. At lunch I sat where I had yesterday, with Angela on one side, and Jessica on the other.
Even though I'd seen the Cullens arrive, I couldn't help the desperate sweep of the canteen my eyes did, hoping that maybe he'd come to school on his own and I'd missed him. But there were only four figures sitting at the back table today.
I couldn't explain the sudden rush of feelings I had towards the mysterious Hale. There was something strange about him, about the whole family. Why did he keep popping up in my visions, and why did he seem so angry to see me yesterday? All the unanswered questions had resulted in a serious loss of appetite, and I picked at my suddenly unappetizing salad sandwich. I was glad I didn't have English today, glad that I wouldn't have to sit through an hour at an empty desk. But maybe empty would be better than next to someone who seemed to hate my guts.
I was walking to Gym, not paying any attention to where I was going, when I slammed into something very hard and very cold. My books scattered on the floor, and I stumbled. I closed my eyes, expecting to feel the hard floor as I hit it. Instead two cold hands gripped my arms, and pulled me up, into a standing position. I found myself staring up into two pairs of golden brown eyes.
Edward and Bella Cullen were standing in front of me, looking throughly amused, Edward had his hands on my arms as he held me steady, and Bella was holding my pile of books. I frowned slightly; I hadn't noticed her pick them up.
“Erm...I'm sorry.” I said, unsure of how to treat these strangers, “I...thank you for...thank you.” I said, taking a quick step back from Edward, as his arms dropped to his sides, “Thanks...again” I mumbled to Bella, as she handed me my books, with a dazzling smile. I realized how short I must seem to them, the top of my head was just in level with Bellas mouth. “It's Ok.” she said. Her voice was quiet but beautiful, like wind chimes
“Yeah, anytime” Edward said, smiling as well. But where Bellas smile seemed to be genuine, Edwards was defiantly strained, and seemed fake. I thought back to the expression in his eyes as he looked at me across the carpark, his black eyes filled with anger. My thoughts flashed to Jaspers expression the day before, his face contorted with such fury as it looked at me, that it terrified me to my very core.
Edwards eyebrows flashed together very slightly, as though he'd known exactly what I was thinking, but before I could even open my mouth, he had taken Bellas hand, and steered her round me and down the corridor. I watched them go, my mouth open very slightly. I could see his mouth moving so fast it was nearly a blur near Bellas ear, and saw her eyebrows knit together in concern as they rounded the corner.
I didn't have a Gym kit, so the Mrs Michaels let me sit out, as though she suspected watched a mixed swimming class would be enjoyable for me. I pulled out my ipod, and turned the sound up as loud as it would go, lent back against the wall and closed my eyes.
This time there was no warning, and the future hit me head on.Jasper was sitting in a tree. A tree so high, you could see nearly all of Forks from it's branches. He had his head in his hands, and was crying dry empty sobs. As I watched, I saw Bella and Edward leap from another tree, and land gently next to him. They didn't say anything, just put their arms round his shoulders, and rocked him as he cried. He lifted his head, his eyes rubbed red raw, “I don't want to be a monster” he said, his voice hoarse and rough.
“You don't have to be” Bella said, her voice filled with sadness.
“But I do!” he shouted, “I can't help it, it's what I am! I don't want to have the urge to kill her as I sit next to her every day! I don't want to have to control myself every time I smell her. I want to hold her without having to worry about her!”
My eyes flew open, and I sat up straight with a jolt. I didn't know if what I'd just seen was a vision, or if I'd fallen asleep, and had an overly vivid dream, but I didn't want to hear anymore. I swung my bag onto my shoulder, and slipped out the side door, while Mrs Michaels was looking the other way. I was home before anyone even noticed I was gone.
Friday dawned bright and early, and I had never been more thankful for a week to end. I wondered why it was so bright in my room, squinting at the bright sunlight, before I noticed that there was someone leaning over me. “Isaac?” I mumbled, my voice rough from sleep.
“The one and only sunshine” he grinned at me. Then something hit.
“SUNSHINE!” I screamed, leaping out of bed and dashing to my window, throwing it open. The cold morning air bit at my arms as I lent out, savoring the hint of sunshine that glimmered through the clouds. I ignored Isaac chuckling behind me, as I watched the dark clouds cover the sun, my bright mood disappearing with it.
I looked at the ground, realizing suddenly that there was a different car in the drive. I frowned, confused. Was there someone else her? Was that why Isaac had woken me up so early? “Isaac...what's...?”
He grinned even wider, “Yeah. I felt bad for leaving you alone all week, so I kind of bought you a car...”
I gaped at him, and his face fell slightly, “If it's not what you wanted then...that's Ok we can buy you a new one-”
He was cut off as I ran to him, and wrapped my arms tightly around his waist, “Thank you, thank you, thank you!” I cried a loudly as I could. He laughed and patted my head.
“It's Ok honey. So do you want to take her for a test drive? You can drive me to work!”
I don't think I'd ever got dressed so quickly in my life, not even my first day of school. I was out of my room, and slamming the front door behind me in all of 56 seconds. And there she was, a complete beauty. A pale pink Volkswagen Beetle, with a dark soft top, in all her glory. I was completely speechless, running my fingers over the shiny surface. The engine hummed gently as I twisted out of the drive, the gravel spinning behind me in a violent ark.
Forks High seemed to shine brightly, despite the thick clouds as I arrived on time, in my beautiful new car. I left the roof down, despite the cold weather, wanting to show her off as much as I could, though my crazy driving would probably alert people to who was driving anyway; the new car hadn't quenched my thirst for fast driving, if anything it had strengthened it.
I paused in a space down one end of the lot, smiling to myself at the stares; no one had pink cars in Forks. A jeep spun into place beside me, and I growled quietly to myself; if one drop of muddy water had splashed onto my car, there would be hell to pay for whoever was driving that damn jeep. I turned to glare at the driver, and froze.
I knew that car, I knew exactly exactly who was driving it, but I still wasn't prepared for the eyes glaring at me from the passenger seat. The seat nearest to me, seating the person who would have to get out closest to me.
”Shit!” I cursed to myself under my breath, as my car top rolled itself up, my eyes not tearing themselves away from the golden-brown ones which had the captivated. Jasper Hale, in all his glaring glory was sitting in the passenger seat, a mere 3' away from me, his siblings surrounding the car, clearly waiting for him to get out.
I took a deep breath, lowering my eyes and turning my door handle and opening the door. I hopped out lightly, turned to pick up my bag, and turned back, to find myself face to face – well, more face to chest, he was very tall – to the golden – eyed – God himself. He looked strained, like he was holding back, but he didn't look angry, if anything he looked curious, like he was trying to...read me.
“ Good mornin' ” he said, and for a moment I was stunned at the beauty of his voice, as melodic as the rest of his families, but hinted with a fading Southern twang. It was incredibly sexy. I bit my lip, forgetting that one generally replies to 'Good Morning'.
He smiled at me, taking my breath away, I could practically feel my heart thudding out of my chest, I was sure he could hear it too. His smile looked genuine, but the beauty of it couldn't take away the strain I could see in his eyes, like he was holding back from something. His arm twitched at his side, gesturing that I should walk first. I smiled as well as I could – probably looking completely hideous - still taken aback by his beauty, and walked away from him, feeling his eyes burning a hole in my back, not daring to look over my shoulder until I was on the steps. He was standing with his siblings, apparently arguing with the blond one – Rosalie – about something unknown. I turned away and nearly ran to my first lesson, nearly banging into a girl I'd met a few days before – Angela, I think her name was – and threw myself into their meaningless conversation, trying to ignore the butterflies in my stomach.
I made my way slowly to my lesson before lunch, a strange feeling fluttering around my organs, as I realized it was English. English with him; the boy who had haunted my thoughts almost non-stop for the past week. The boy I couldn't quite figure out.
He was sitting in his usual chair, just as still as before, staring at the door as soon as I opened it, his eyes meeting mine. His face didn't relax even a fraction, but something changed in his eyes very slightly, as though he was resigning himself to something. I swung my bag over my chair, sitting down next to him, and was just considering whether or not I should speak first, when he beat me to it.
“I'm sorry I was so rude last lesson. I didn't get a chance to introduce myself to you, my name is Jasper Hale. You're Alice Brandon.”
It wasn't a question, but he still seemed to be expecting me to say something. I smiled slightly, “Well you seem to have done both halves of the introducing already, so I'm out of things to say.”
He seemed slightly lost for words, having apparently never spoken to anyone with the slightest sense of irony, so I took it upon myself to continue the conversation, wondering if he knew what he was getting himself into when he spoke to me, I had a tendency to ramble until someone stopped me.
“Have you done something to your eyes? Like got contacts or something, because they've changed color. I think that's pretty cool, I've always wanted colored contacts, but my mum always said that my eyes were already a pretty color. But you know mothers – they'll say anything about what you look like to get you to shut up – even if it is a complete lie -” I broke off, rolling my eyes, before I realized that he was staring at me incredulously, apparently he'd never spoken to anyone who talked as much as me either. But it wasn't just that, there was a look in his eyes, fear or anger. Oh God I thought, Not the anger back, please anything but the anger. And then the worst happened. He left. Again.
He did it again. He left our English lesson, this time before the lesson was even close to being over. Just slammed his books on the table, and ran for the door. The teacher didn’t even seem surprised, just nodded as he passed her. Am I the only one who thinks that it’s weird? Is this normal for their tiny town?
I gaped open mouthed at the door he had just left through, still swinging slightly in the force of his slam. No one had even looked up from their books. I returned my eyes to the table, and that’s when I realized; his books were still on the table next to me, his pens, his work book open and filled with his elegant scrawl, his bag hanging by the strap over his chair. Was he coming back, did this mean? Would be he back at the end of the lesson to get his things?
I mulled the questions over in my head, barely listening to the lecture on Romeo and Juliet. It wasn’t anything I didn’t already know; I’ve read it more times than I can count. I wondered how on earth I could be the only one in the class who found the Cullens’ behavior strange. Or was I the ‘new girl’ who didn’t know about their strange ways, who shouldn’t interfere with things she knew nothing about?
The bell rang, jerking me out of my revere. Had I been daydreaming for that long? Apparently I had, the students were filling out, leaving me alone on the back bench, with Jasper Hales bag. I froze, wondering what I should do, before doing my best, and acting on impulse. I stacked his books neatly into his bag, and picked it up as well as mine, intent on returning it too him, despite the shaking feeling it gave me.
The lunch hall was filled when I got there eventually, trailing my feet, hoping the journey would last forever, it felt like I was –
- walking towards the gallows"
My head jerked up slightly, interested by the slightly out of place thought, and I wondered who at Forks High could be so morbid. My eyes fell upon Alice Brandon, tentatively weaving her way through the crowded canteen, making a beeline towards our table, her intentions clear in her mind, my eyes focusing on the bag on her shoulder. Jaspers bag.
“Heads up” I muttered, so quietly that only my siblings would hear me,
Emmett looked up, smirked, and nudged Jasper, “We've got incoming.” They all looked up, straight at Alice, realizing in a split second just what she was about to do. You didn't have to be an empath to feel the waves of fear enveloping her, and I wondered just what Jasper was feeling right now. Her eyes were trained directly on him, and she seemed unwilling to even think about looking at the rest of us. I resisted the urge to smirk.
“Wow” muttered Emmett, “She does smell good”
Jasper growled at him, his hands curling into fists.
She stopped in front of our table, her eyes suddenly flicking nervously from person to person – Rosalie looking bored and rolling her eyes, Emmett smirking in what he thought was a friendly way, Bella smiling warmly, Jasper looking incredibly confused, and me...well I followed Bellas idea, and smiled at her.
She smiled back, faltering slightly as her eyes fell on Jasper, and cleared her throat nervously, biting her lips. I saw Jaspers eyes flicker slightly to her lips, and back to her face.
“I...I um. You left your bag...in English. And I, well I thought....that maybe you might need it...?”
Jasper paused, searching for words, “Thank you” He said stiffly, “That was...considerate of you.” She placed the bag on the table in front of him, searching for words, wondering if she should leave. But thankfully for her, Bella cut in.
“Alice” she smiled brightly, “Would you like to join us?” Alice looked lost for words, but her mind was filled with questions. According to her, it was easier to say yes, and she sat down slowly, next to Jasper, in the only free seat. Emmetts smirk grew as he looked at Jaspers face. “So Alice” Bella continued, determined to make the girl feel more comfortable, “Why did you move to Forks?”
“Well...my mother...she died last August. And I knew that looking at me everyday was hard for my dad...I look just like her,” Why am I telling them this? she thought frantically, but her mouth continued to speak, “ And...it grew harder for him to look after me as he...crawled inside a Vodka bottle. So...I moved out here, to live with my uncle...to make it easier for everyone”
“But now you're unhappy.”
She didn't have an answer for that.
- First Sight
- Open Book
- Blood Typing
- Scary Stories
- Port Angeles
- Mind Over Matter
- The Cullens
- The Game
- The Hunt
- Phone Call
- Hide and Seek
- The Angel
- An Impasse
- Epilogue: An Occasion
- Authors Note.
- Alyss In Wonderland
1 2 3 4 5
- 07 Jan 09
- 08 Apr 09