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Forget Me Not

Summary:
The Cullens have left Forks, leaving Bella broken hearted and alone until a near-fatal car accident temporarily erases her memories. What happens when the one person she finds comfort with happens to be the brother of the man she can't remember? Will she regain her memories of Edward or will she find a new love with Jasper?


Notes:
This story starts around the beginning of New Moon. Rated NR-17. B/E and B/J. DISCLAIMER: All characters are the sole property of Stephanie Meyers but the story is my own.


18. Enduring the Pain

Rating 3/5   Word Count 2781   Review this Chapter

Bella’s POV

I slept for hours, doped up on the morphine Carlisle had forced into my veins earlier that night. Had it numbed the pain of my broken heart, I would have been grateful. Instead, I was made to suffer through the intense pain in silence, screaming on the inside while my body remained at peace. The dreams I experienced made the ordeal that much worse.

I saw Jasper, my dear, sweet Jasper, staring at me with so much love and adoration in his eyes that it made my heart flutter. He approached me slowly, whispering words of our forever. With that smile that made my knees go weak, he raised his hands to my face.

“Trust me,” he whispered into my ear. I nodded, lost in his gaze and weak with desire. His eyes suddenly swirled to black and he his lips pulled up over his teeth. I couldn’t breathe as he bit down into my neck, spilling my blood without a trace of remorse. I tried to scream, but no sound came out when I opened my mouth. Everything was silent, everything except the feverish growl that escaped Jasper’s lips as he tore through my neck.

Edward came out of the darkness, wide-eyed and trembling. The look of terror on his face heightened the fear I was already feeling. I reached my bloodied, shaking hand out to him as he watched the gruesome scene. He started to reach for my hand but lowered his head and turned his back to me.

“Don’t leave, Edward! Please, help me!” I was finally able to find my voice. He paused for a moment, glancing over his shoulder in response to my blood-curdling screams.

“Goodbye, Bella,” he said and disappeared back into the darkness, leaving me to die in Jasper’s arms.

I woke up screaming in terror as beads of sweat dripped down my face. I raised my trembling hand up to my neck and let out a gasp of relief to find no wounds.

“Bella, you’re awake!” Esme said, coming into the room. A sharp, crushing pain pressed down on my chest, adding to the aching of my body. She tilted her head and took a step towards the bed.

“No! Stay away from me!” I screamed as loud as my hoarse throat would allow. Esme looked terrified as she backed away from me.

“Esme, what happened?” Carlisle asked, appearing at her side in the doorway.

“I…I don’t know.” She stared up at him with so much sadness that it crushed the broken pieces of my heart.

“Bella, don’t be afraid. I’m going to give you some medicine that will help you sleep.” Carlisle cautiously approached the foot of the bed.

“No!” I screamed louder. “The nightmares…please, Carlisle. Don’t make me go to sleep.”

He walked around the end of the bed, careful not to make any sudden movements as he got closer to me. He reached his hand out to me and I quickly backed away, scooting as close to the headboard as I could get.

“I won’t hurt you, Bella. I just need to make sure you aren’t running a fever.”

I eyed him for a moment before nodding with hesitated approval. He pressed his icy hand against my forehead for a moment and then backed away.

“Esme, will you get Bella a glass of water?” he asked softly. Esme left the room for no more than a minute and returned long enough to hand Carlisle the glass. The stabbing pain in my chest was growing stronger with each breath, bringing tears to my eyes. Carlisle handed me the glass while Esme left the room. I gulped the water down, finding relief as the cold fluid splashed down my tender throat. Once the glass was empty, Carlisle took it and placed it on the nightstand. My head ached unmercifully as I continued to sob from the intensity of the pain.

“Are you sure you don’t want anything to help ease the pain?” Carlisle asked. I shook my head while clutching at my chest. He sat on the edge of the bed, rubbing my back as I hunched over in agony.

“It hurts so badly.”

“I know it does, Sweetheart,” he said softly, running his hand over my damp hair. “It won’t hurt forever, I promise.”

I leaned against him and froze when I noticed the smears of blood and tears in his shirt. My stomach twisted into a knot, knowing that it was my blood.

“Carlisle…” I stammered. He glanced down at the soils on his shirt and wrapped his hand over mine.

“You bled a little when I gave you the shot of morphine.”

“The others…are they okay?”

“We are all fine.”

I could hear the hesitation in his voice. It was easy to tell when Carlisle was hiding something, he was a terrible liar and it was unlike him to conceal anything.

“Where are Edward and Jasper?”

“They are out for the night,” he replied. The thought of having to see them again sent a searing pain into the pit of my stomach. What would I say? How was I supposed to act around them? It was too painful to be here, knowing that they were in the same house. I started hyperventilating when I imagined Edward coming into the room if I fell asleep again. It may not have bothered me in the past, but things were different now. My feelings for Edward were conflicted now that the part of me that loved him was awake again. Every moment spent, longing to fit into his life, lingered in my mind and with it, every second of aguish I experienced each time I felt unworthy of his love. My chest tightened when I thought back to the day he left me. I closed my eyes and took a deep, staggered breath.

“What’s on your mind, Bella?” Carlisle asked. I didn’t know how to respond. A million different thoughts and memories spun through my head like a raging tornado.

“I’m sorry for bringing so much trouble to your family.” I grit my teeth and grabbed at my chest when another spike of pain tore through my body.

“We should be the ones apologizing to you.”

The pain hit me harder and more frequently than before. My body started convulsing as my eyes rolled back into my head. I couldn’t fight the strenuous war with my emotions anymore.

“Bella?” Carlisle’s voice echoed through my head. “Emmet!” he shouted. The blackness of my subconscious wrapped itself around me like a comforting blanket, promising to bring an end to my suffering if I allowed it. I wanted to escape the pain, no matter what I had to do.

“What’s wrong with her?” Emmet asked.

“She’s giving up! I need you to find Jasper. Bella, Honey, hold on just a little longer.”

There was a faint sound of shuffling feet around me but I was too weak to open my eyes. I felt my body fall into the mattress as it continued to quake painfully. A cold sensation covered my hand followed by a stinging prick in the crease of my elbow. My blanketed escape suddenly disappeared, leaving me to return to the agonizing torture that was slowly sucking the life out of me. I forced my heavy eyelids open and saw Jasper and Carlisle staring down at me. My chest blazed as the fear of my nightmares took hold of my senses.

“Jasper, can you overpower her pain?” Carlisle asked, flashed his eyes over to him. I couldn’t hold in the screams as the ripping in my chest continued to torment me.

“I’ve never tried to control anything this big. I don’t know that I can do it,” Jasper replied, his voice thick with remorse.

“Will you try? I know you can do it, Son.”

Emmet held my shoulders down as my body thrashed around violently. I managed to catch a glimpse of Jasper’s eyes through my tears. In that brief moment, I could feel his silent request for permission to help.

“Jasper,” I shrieked in pain, unable to say anything more. He didn’t need to hear anything else. Emmet released my shoulders and Jasper instantly pulled me into his embrace. Though my body flailed in his arms, he never let go. He held me tight against his chest, snaking one arm around my waist while cupping the back of my head with his free hand.

“Let me in, Darlin’,” he whispered into my ear.

I struggled to push all of the tangled thoughts out of my head, focusing only on one thing…the first moment that I felt like a part of the Cullen family. It was a pure thought, untarnished by any sadness or grief. A flicker of happiness and love trickled through my raw nerves and suddenly, I felt hope. I closed my eyes and focused harder on the emotions Jasper pushed over me. The weight of the depression slowly lifted from my chest, allowing me to breathe easier. My heart found its steady rhythm and my body slowly stopped trembling. Daylight broke through window as Jasper’s embrace weakened.

“You should get some rest,” he stammered, releasing me as he slid off the bed. When he tried to stand, his legs buckled, sending him crashing to the floor. Carlisle rushed to his side and helped him to his feet while I watched in horror. Something was wrong and, though I didn’t know the cause of his weakness, I felt certain that it had something to do with me. Emmet pulled Jasper’s arm around his neck and ushered him out of the room.

“What’s wrong with Jasper?” I asked, anxious with concern. Carlisle returned to my bedside and checked my forehead once again for any traces of a fever. “Carlisle…” I whimpered.

“He’ll be fine, Bella.”

“He doesn’t look fine!”

Carlisle sighed as he sat at the foot of the bed. “Jasper’s gift comes with a price. His ability to feel the emotions of those around him is difficult enough in itself, but to manipulate emotions…it’s difficult to explain.”

“Please, I have to know.” I studied his face, desperate to understand.

“The emotions that he uses during the manipulation don’t just come out of nowhere, they are his feelings. If you were sad and he wanted to make you happy, he would focus on the things that have brought him happiness and, in essence, share them with you. When Jasper first joined out family, he wasn’t able to control emotions as well as he does now because he only had experience with hate and pain. His relationship with Alice created many happy memories that he could use to draw off of when he needed to manipulate a feeling of joy. I suppose you could say that she fed his ability. Each time he uses his ability, it takes a part of that specific emotion away from him.”

I shook my head, trying to wrap my mind around the things Carlisle was telling me.

“So, you’re saying that the happiness I felt was his, and now he lost a portion of it to help me?” My own words were confusing me.

“Yes, but…” Carlisle hesitated.

“But, what?”

“He didn’t only lose part of his happiness…he absorbed all of your pain. It’s sort of like an exchange of emotions.”

My eyes grew wide as my mouth fell open. Had I known what Jasper was sacrificing to help me, I wouldn’t have allowed it. I dreaded the thought of him giving up some of his happiness just to ease my suffering.

“Why didn’t he tell me?”

“Because he knew you would have said no. He loves you, Bella. No price is too big to pay when love is involved.”

Tears welled up in my eyes as the guilt gnawed away at my broken heart. Carlisle lowered his eyes and I knew there was more that he wasn’t telling me.

“You’re not telling me everything, are you?” I asked, unsure that I could handle anymore guilt. Carlisle slowly shook his head.

“You had a lot of pain, Bella. I’ve never seen him collapse after a manipulation before. I assume he had to use quite a bit of his emotions to overpower yours.”

My heart sank, knowing that Jasper had given up so much for me and I had nothing to offer in return. It would be cruel to give him false hope while my heart was torn between him and Edward. There was no way that I was going to inflict any additional pain on him. He had suffered enough because of me.

“Don’t guilt yourself over this. Jasper wanted to do what he could to help you.” Carlisle said.

“I have to talk to him.”

“Bella, I don’t think…”

“No, Carlisle! You can’t talk me out of this.” I jumped off the bed and rushed out of the room. My body was still weak from the hours of torture that I endured and my exhaustion was slowly conquering my senses, but I was determined to talk to Jasper.

I stumbled down the stairs and bolted through the hallway. Emmet came out of Jasper’s room just as I reached the door.

“Bella, what are you…”

“Not now, Emmet!” I huffed, pushing past him. He didn’t try to stop me. Instead, he closed the door once I entered the room.

Jasper was stretched out on his bed, staring at the ceiling with an empty expression on his face. I rushed to his side, hoping that my fears were wrong. I didn’t want to believe that he had given up all of his happiness to relieve my pain. He turned his face away from me and clenched his jaw. I flinched at his coldness towards me.

“What do you want, Bella?”

“I wanted to talk to you.” I choked on my words and waited for any reaction, good or bad. He didn’t move a muscle.

“There is nothing to talk about,” he said, gritting his teeth.

“Please, Jasper, I feel terrible. Carlisle told me about the sacrifice you made for me. Why didn’t you tell me?” I grasped the sleeve of his shirt, seeking even the slightest amount of comfort from him. He slowly turned his face to me, retaining the emotionless mask that hid the true Jasper that I had fallen in love with. He wrapped his hand over mine and stared deep into my eyes.

“What’s done is done. You owe me nothing. If you need comfort, go to Edward…you’ll find none here,” he muttered, pulling my hand free from his sleeve. I stared at his cold eyes in disbelief. In the time that I had known him, he never spoke to me with so much hatred and I knew this dramatic change was my fault. He turned his head away once again, saying nothing more. I stumbled for the door and ran down the hall with tears stinging my eyes.

Edward was coming in the house and quickly noticed my devastation. He caught me by the waist when I tried to run past him and looked me over nervously.

“Bella, what’s going on?”

“Leave me alone! You did this! This is all your fault!” I screamed through my tears, pounding my fists against his chest. He pulled me into his embrace and waited for me to calm down. Once the last of my energy and strength was gone, he lifted me into his arms and carried me back up to Alice’s room. I pulled my knees into my chest when he laid me on the bed and continued to cry.

“Do you want me to leave?” he asked.

I didn’t know what I wanted. Jasper hated me, more proof that my interaction with this family was only causing destruction. Edward lingered for a moment and then turned to leave. Without thinking, I reached out and grabbed his hand.

“Are you sure this is what you want?” He stared down at me with a slight concern in his eyes. I slowly nodded my head as the sleep deprivation forced my eyes closed. He climbed onto the bed and curled up beside me, holding me in his arms. Memories of the nights that Edward spent holding me in his arms as I slept came rushing back to me. There was a sense of sadness that came from those happy times, but my exhaustion refused to allow me to give it any serious thought. I couldn’t fight the urge to sleep and, finally, surrendered to it. Images of Jasper’s cold eyes glaring at me filled my head as I drifted to sleep. I never wanted to wake up, knowing that I brought him so much pain.