How did Alice forget her entire past? Who was the mysterious doctor that helped her survive James' attack?
1. Asylum Angel
Rating 5/5 Word Count 1655 Review this Chapter
She looked up at Dr. Peterson, starlight in her eyes, and smiled her porcelain smile.
“You came for me,” she whispered, a thousand meanings behind her words.
“Of course I did.” His voice was cracked and wearied, though no worry lines showed on his perfectly sculpted face. Would there ever be an end to her tragedy?
“I saw you last night…” Mary Alice Brandon’s voice was small but powerful.
The doctor winced. “Did you, now?” Faking interest, he took a seat beside her in the padded cell.
She leaned closer to him, unhindered by the straight-jacket. “Will you promise to keep a secret?”
“I always keep your secrets, Alice, you know that.” Dr. Peterson was careful to hold his breath around her. She smelled so delicious. Like mangos on a sunny morning.
“Last night, you came to take me away to another place so I wouldn’t get hurt. The one who wants me, he stopped hunting because there was no use in it anymore. But then…then…” Alice let out a wail and fell over, her face buried in the soft floor. Her shoulders shook as she sobbed, and Dr. Peterson was at a loss to comfort her.
“I don’t understand,” he said in a soothing voice, reaching out to her.
She made an attempt to slap his hand away, but it was useless on his strong body. “I don’t understand either!” Alice hiccupped, now in control of her emotions again. “But you died, Peterson, you died. If you take me away tonight, you’ll die.”
If Dr. Peterson’s heart was still beating, it would have stopped at her words. She had been committed to the hospital at the age of four. Her parents were very concerned with her estranged behavior. Young Alice was disconnected from the world and insisted she could see things before they happened. Her parents pleaded for Dr. Peterson, the best psychiatric consultant in the country at the time. They gave him a generous sum of money to find out what was wrong with their daughter.
Technically, nothing was wrong with little Mary. Except for the fact that she had a long list of things that she hated. On top of the list was her name. She detested her first name and would only respond to her middle name, Alice. She refused to eat meat of any kind, because she thought it was cruel to hurt something with emotions. She didn’t care much for smoking, it was a dirty habit.
But, in the first sessions with her, Dr. Peterson discovered that Alice was a remarkable child with a remarkable gift. She had a genuine ability to see the future, parts of it at least, and was determined to use it for the good of those around her. It was a shame that her parents didn’t believe her. None of the other doctors believed her, either. They thought that she was deranged and a menace. Dr. Peterson pleaded and begged and threatened in order to keep her from getting a lobotomy. It was useless to keep her from the shock treatments and solitary confinement. But he would make it up to her with frequent visits and presents, doting on her like she was his own daughter.
And now his daughter was in danger.
“I’ve had a long life, Alice.” Dr. Peterson sighed. “Too long, actually. By now I assume that you’ve guessed what I am?”
“You’ve known for a long time, then?”
“I saw what you were before I ever met you,” Alice murmered. “I saw it in my head, that they’d take me to a vampire.”
“And you weren’t scared,” Dr. Peterson said in awe.
Alice shook her head happily. “Not for a minute!”
“You’re very brave, my Alice. Very brave.” Dr. Peterson moved closer and lowered his voice. “You’ve been very brave this whole time, with the shock treatments and this room. For many years you’ve been so brave.”
Alice inclined her head, listening more intently. “I know what you’re going to say.”
The doctor laughed. “Then do I really need to say it?”
“Go ahead and say it, we have some time on our hands.” Alice beamed at the man encouragingly.
“So we do, so we do. I need you to be brave one last time for me. Can you do that?” he pleaded, placing a hand on her cheek.
She didn’t so much as shiver or hesitate. “I’ll be brave.”
“Good. There’s a man, you’ve probably seen him coming?”
Alice nodded. “Of course.”
“Then you know what he wants with you?” Dr. Peterson posed the question carefully.
“Munch, munch, munch,” Alice said as she pretended to chew on a tasty morsel.
Dr. Peterson couldn’t help but chuckle. “You’re very brave, Alice.”
She was quiet for a long moment. “I’ll miss you,” Alice finally said, letting a tear fall. Holding his gaze, Alice took in every feature of the doctor. Dr. Peterson flinched under the careful study of his favorite patient with the starry eyes.
“I don’t think you will,” he said quietly.
Alice was sucked into the future for half a second and then replaced in the present. “You can make me forget…?”
Dr. Peterson nodded. “You’re not the only one with a gift,” he winked as he spoke.
Sighing, Alice said, “I’m not sure I want to forget.”
“Oh, come on. You’ll have more room in that head of your for more memories.” Dr. Peterson was an expert at persuasion. “You won’t have to think back to this time in a padded cell ever again.”
“Will I forget my name?” Alice asked suddenly.
The doctor paused. “Well, I don’t know.” Seeing the anxiety in Alice’s face, he made a quick idea. “Tell you what. I’ll leave you a note with your name on it.”
Her eyes lit up again with the entire night sky inside them. “Really? Promise?”
“Cross my heart,” Dr. Peterson said, making an X motion over his heart.
Alice was relieved. “Thank you.” She waited a moment then, satisfied that the conversation was over, added, “And you have some pills for me, right?”
Dr. Peterson smiled. “How do you know these things, Alice?”
She shrugged. “Magic, I guess.”
Taking the small plastic container from his pocket, Dr. Peterson counted out three capsules into his palm. Before he assisted her in consuming them, he gave her one last piece of advice. “When you forget your past, try not to forget your fighting spirit.”
“Won’t I forget this advice?”
“Touché,” Dr. Peterson praised, placing the pills in Alice’s open mouth. She swallowed them without a second thought and was unconscious within five minutes. Dr. Peterson signed a few forms and placed a few bribes to get her out of the asylum and into his Model-T Ford. After driving for miles, he pulled over to the side of the road. It was then that he erased Alice’s memory and leaned in close to her and gingerly locked his teeth onto her fleshy neck. Resisting the urge to drain her dry, he simply released venom and backed away. He then wrote a quick note that read:Dear Alice, You have forgotten your past, but try not to forget your fighting spirit. It’s a defining part of your powerful personality and I hope it leads you to greatness…or, at least, to someone who will cherish you in ways that I could not. Try not to have too many adventures. Your Friend and Mentor, Dr. Peterson
Just as he placed the note in Alice’s hand, a male vampire with pitch black eyes appeared behind Dr. Peterson.
“Very clever,” he mused, observing Alice changing quickly.
Dr. Peterson didn’t need to look to see that it was James. “It’s too late for a meal here. Why don’t you move along now?”
James laughed in a low, rocky voice. “I’m not leaving without a trophy.”
Closing his eyes, Dr. Peterson readied himself for the end. “Alright. Kill me.”
Pouncing, it only took a few moments to dismember Alice’s protector. Slinking away into the forest with Dr. Peterson’s remains, James set the pieces on fire and moved closer to the road. He observed Alice awaking and basking in the full-force glory of the sun. She was in awe of its beauty only for a moment. Then she was distracted by the glittering rays that bounced off of her skin. Shaking his head in defeat, James moved on in search of a new target.
Moving slightly to test her new body, Alice stepped out of the car. Feeling a piece of paper in her hand, she unfolded it and read its contents. She looked around her for any sign of her mentor, Dr. Peterson, but determined that he was gone. Her memory had been erased completely and she was grateful for this documentation of her past.
A car was slowing down as it approached the parked car. It parked just behind Dr. Peterson’s car and a man emerged.
“Hey,” he called out, amazed at this gorgeous young woman. “Do you need any help, ma’am?”
Blinded by blood-lust, Alice made her first kill only to regret it later.
“He’s human, he has feelings!” she screamed, tearing up a young sapling in her rage. Alice was furious with herself. “There has to be another way. There has to be another way!” Flicking through the future, she saw it.
Her life would be complete, if only she could find him… He was somewhere in Philadelphia, the slick southern-gentleman type. What was his name? Alice thumbed through the future again. Jasper Whitlock. He’d help her find them, the Cullen family. The ones with a better life. The ones who cared about humans as individuals, not as livestock.
Alice was overjoyed to the point where, as she darted off to Philadelphia, she danced and swirled in the breeze. In her haste, she dropped the crumpled note. Her thoughts were spinning around one thing.