Mary Alice, Full of Grace
Pre-Twilight, a twist in genetics allows Alice to remember her childhood.
She remembers when the visions started, her family, and a dark moment of her past that makes meeting Jasper more eventful. Jasper's violent past and restless future beg her to tread lightly around this stranger. Will she be able to dig deep enough to find the gentle soul in there somewhere? Or will she scare herself away from the only one who can help her heal? **This story might seem a bit out of character at moments, but it's because Alice and Jasper finish BD still only 2-D, I take the liberty of giving them a few more aspects than SM has time to, so be warned! :) **Warning- contains allusion to childhood sexual abuse, please don't read if you are sensitive to that topic Jasper There were no secrets in this house with Edward, Alice and I were both uncomfortable with that thought. The difference is, in Alice's secrets she's the victim, but in mine, I'm the villian. Edward would need more than his gift, in fact more than both of our gifts, to truly understand the shift of gravity that took place when she put her tiny hand into mine. I may not have let myself entertain it at the time, but I knew in that moment that something changed and I was never going to be the same. I also knew that it had to do with the half- starved little girl who so brazenly took my hand. Was she checking to make sure I hadn't found my human genes while she was asleep? I guess so. Next time she's unsure what sort of creature I am, I should advise her to ask. She just about learned exactly what kind of monster I am with that little stunt of hers. Alice The words escape before I can even think about them. "You're even more beautiful in real life." She reminds me of my mother, her expression full of concern and compassion. He's gorgeous, rugged and tough, and the unbidden observation only makes me more nervous. He's beautiful because he's a predator, the most dangerous of them all. Emmett One minute I'm sitting here wondering what in the world we're doing having a powwow on the back lawn, and the next Edward and Jasper stalk off out of earshot and it's just me and the Chiclet, alone in the grass. I hope that my brother has an amazingly good reason for leaving us here like this, because it isn't exactly my idea of a good time to sit here and scare the hell out of a toy- sized girl.
So, I found this site and decided to try it out :) This fic is also on Twilighted and FF.net, so if you get hooked and I don't end up continuing on this site, you can find it there :) http://twilighted.net/viewstory.php?sid=10293 http://www.fanfiction.net/s/5843497/1/bMary_b_bAlice_b_bFull_b_of_bGrace_b There is also a forum on Twilighted if you're interested in discussing the story! http://twilighted.net/forum/viewtopic.php?f=17&t=12601
4. Chapter 4 - Traveling
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I take my time wandering back to her, forcing my feet to move slowly even though I want to run as fast as I can. I will go crazy, left to my own devices with her swirling scent and sleeping form. When I finally return, the sunlight is starting to peek over the horizon. I walk up silently and return to my seat next to her. A slight breeze has picked up, gently fanning her irresistible scent toward me.
The wind catches a few errant strands of her unruly midnight hair and deposits them over her closed eyes. Absently, I reach forward to brush them away from her face. I register what I am doing too late and brace myself for a repeat of last night, but the fear doesn't come and her breathing stays even. My hand is still frozen over her face, my fingers nearly touching her hair. From this proximity I can feel the heat radiating off of her in waves. I imagine what the intensity of her rich, intoxicating scent would be if I were to bury my face in her hair. This delinquent thought should be an immediate red flag for me, but I find myself pushing it away only after briefly entertaining the idea that maybe, someday...
I slowly pull my hand through the tips of her hair, certain to be gentle enough not to wake her. The sensation is exhilarating; the silk of her hair seems to direct electricity openly from her vibrant soul to my cold, dead fingers, making them wish to remember life again.
I am having a dream, I am sure of it. My dreams are not like my visions; they are hazy and uncertain - they follow no logic. They flow along, lazily plucking images and scenarios from my memory and subconscious, chewing them for a while then repeating them back in a mangled representation of the original. I am standing in an ocean, I think. The friendly shop owner from town is floating lazily along on his back, and he waves to me on the way past. I take a step or two, unworried about what exactly I am walking on. There is a breeze picking up and it is cold. The water is cold on my feet as well, but the wind is frigid. It pulls its icy fingers through my hair, tugging gently at the ends. I can feel myself being pulled back toward consciousness, but I don't mind. I am cold and I don't remember why. The light starting to shine behind my eyelids confuses me further; there are no windows in my small room.
There are also no leaves, and there appears to be one insistently poking at my neck. I can still feel the icy fingers of the wind in my hair, and I crack open one eye to find...Jasper. Frozen, with one hand stretched toward me, about to touch my hair again. My breath catches. What is he doing and why is he touching me? But when I gather the courage to glance up at him he is looking down sheepishly, like a child caught stealing candy. I cannot help but see that his intentions are innocent. As I calm down I am struck by the reality of it all. It's really him. The man from my visions. He's still here. The morning haze is still thick so I find myself having to reorient myself. "Here," is in the forest-outside of town. He stayed, from the looks of it, all night. He still hasn't moved, but then neither have I. I reluctantly pry the other eye open and let them wander to his hand, still frozen in place. I lift my eyebrows questioningly, and he removes it.
I move slowly to sit up, my body is tougher than a human's, but sleeping on the forest floor is still less than pleasant.
The silence is starting to get to me, so after a long yawn I offer him a tentative, "Good morning," stretching my arms out to the sides, then over my head.
"Good morning," he responds quietly, nearly too softly to hear. Even at this level I can pick out a slight drawl. Growing up a Mississippi girl myself, I can't help but find it charming.
I want to ask him if I have time to go retrieve the small bag with my only change of clothes and a few trinkets from my house before we go, but his reaction to my question yesterday is making me cautious. So I decide on a less presumptuous question. "What do you want to do today?"
He frowns oddly, as if trying to measure the question. I am not sure what he is interpreting from any of this, his responses so far seem so foreign to any being I have met before. I want to wait out his reply, but I don't want to give him time to mull over whatever strange thing he thinks I am trying to pull on him. "Can I stay with you today?" I am trying to ask an easier question, maybe with less commitment, to see if I can get him talking and make some progress.
"Yes, I suppose."
Well, that's something at least. "Would you mind if I ran back to gather a few things from my house before we leave here? I would like to let the family I am living with know I'll be leaving so they won't wonder."
"Whatever you wish."
"Will you still be here when I come back?"
"If you want."
"I'll run and come right back." I am afraid that if I let him out of my sight for too long I might lose him, so I'm off through the underbrush as fast as I can. I wouldn't have even asked, nothing I own is all that valuable, but I didn't wear the necklace with my father's ring yesterday, and I can't leave here without it. Other than that, the packing is relatively simple. I have two sets of clothing, the longer, formerly light green calico dress I am currently wearing, and a slightly shorter, about calf-length, light blue dress. I pull off the stiff, torn fabric of the now crimson-black stained dress; most of the sleeves shredded to ribbons by my nails, and replace it with the shorter blue one, now my only presentable attire.
The current fashions are starting to run a little shorter anyway, but I don't have the disposable income to follow the fads. I love to see the new patterns in the fabric store or run my fingers through the smooth layers, but I can never stay long enough in one place to work to afford such unnecessary comforts. Maybe I can do without another dress until we find the coven from my visions. I see them in the same place for years before they move, so I hope that I will have time to establish myself and earn a living somehow to buy a new dress, maybe even two. I push the thought aside, stuff my few personal effects into the small bag they often travel in, and head back out the door. I scratch a quick note and leave it at the door. I would rather wait to see them and say goodbye, but I don't want him to change his mind if he has to wait too long.
There is a slight tug in my chest as the little nymph dances off into the woods. I am irrationally afraid that she will not return. I have no idea why this concept bothers me, it would probably be better for both of us if she didn't. I have only known her for a day and already her pulsing blood has brought out the predator in me. I expected that to be slightly more prevalent in the discussion last night, and if not then, this morning. I don't know how I expected that topic to go, but nearly ignoring it and forgiving me isn't even close. I am certainly not good for her. I need no further proof than having already tried to end her life once in the last twelve hours.
With that in mind, I have no idea why I am still here, giving her the chance to return. I am not exactly what you'd call ‘social'. I don't need company or distraction. Yet here I am, waiting for this stranger to come back and embark on some eccentric journey she seems to have planned out. For some reason, there is nothing else I can be doing right now. I am trying to tell myself it's because I have no other, and therefore no better, plans. But I know that is not the reason. Part of it is curiosity. Even after her explanation of her oddities I am still fascinated, I want to watch her and figure out more.
That is probably closer to the truth. I want to watch her. I feel the strangest need to protect her. She is so tiny, so fragile looking, and certainly so broken. If I had any sense, this feeling should make me leave that much faster. All I can do is hurt her further. I may be enraged at the heinous being that instilled this fear in her, but at least he didn't kill her, as I have already attempted. My kind don't protect, we destroy. Even in my attempts to be gentle and unintimidating, although admittedly unpracticed, I managed to scare her. She hyperventilated when I touched her last night, but I still had the bright idea to run my hands through her hair while she was lying there unconscious. I am not sure what made that seem like a good idea, but it sounded reasonable at the time. Her initial shock and fear I had expected. The quick recovery and subsequent casual demeanor I had not. I was surprised by her ability to pull back such powerful emotions. I must have really caught her off guard last night. If I am surprised by her emotional strength, however, it is nothing compared to how disturbed I am by another image from this morning.
She may be stronger than she looks when she is frightened, but she is clearly weakened. My mind reevaluates her first waking moments, after she'd caught me running my hands through her hair- embarrassing. When she reached up, then stretched to the side, I could see the clear outline of at least the middle three of her ribs through the fabric of her thin and torn dress. She has a small build, but that small isn't natural for anyone. She said she can survive off of blood or human food, which seems to leave little excuse not to take care of herself. It should be relatively simple to stay fed, living among humans with a forest nearby. One way or the other she should be able to find proper nutrition. Maybe she isn't looking.
I am pulled from my unsettling assumption-making by her small form bounding through the forest toward me. I am both excited and apprehensive. I know I have no right to want her with me, and for that matter, no real reason, but I demand no explanation for my reaction, knowing I have none to give.
"Northwest," she replies confidently, throwing a small bag over her shoulder. I have the feeling that she is simply blindly declaring a direction, but I have no destination, so even if she is, it can't be out of the way. I am not sure of her endurance or speed, so I glance at the sun rising and start walking farther into the forest, keeping the hazy rays dancing off of the damp trees to my right. Today seems to threaten sunshine, so I will have to stay close to the dense overgrowth to stay hidden. I am unaccustomed to traveling during the day in this climate. I tended to stay inside before, training with Maria's troops at night and planning detailed war scenarios inside during the day. We occasionally went out scouting in the daytime if the clouds were low, but we usually stayed to ourselves when alert humans would be awake.
I steal a glance at the girl nearly skipping along a breath behind me; all traces of the trembling, diminutive creature from last night seem to have melted away in the morning light. Her eyes are bright and clear, darting here and there to fixate momentarily on an overhead bird, calling from its perch partially obscured by the canopy, or a tiny flower among the large roots of an oak to pick and bring along, cradling it gently in her hand. The only hints to her uncertainty come from my talent. Every once in a while I catch the conflicting emotions before she seems to push them away. If not for that unfair clue into her mind I would have no idea anything bothered her.
I tell myself that the glances I keep stealing are to make sure she is still with me, but my hearing would be enough to tell that if it were really what I wanted. I just like looking at her. She is so...optimistic and childlike, yet she obviously holds dark secrets. How does she do it, holding such a deep paradox in those sparkling, cheery eyes?
When she catches me looking, she thrusts her hand out to me. "It's for you, I'm saving it. Someday you'll see that the fear and pain you hold around you as a shield is just as delicate as this little flower, inevitably going to wither away..." She trails off to herself, cradling the flower and spinning in circles as she walks perfectly straight down the path. I stare after her for at least five seconds. What is that supposed to mean? She just spouts some random opinion about my "inner self" and then skips away like she's commented on the weather? What is this girl, a walking dictionary for cryptic and clichéd sounding phrases? And speaking of walls of fear, this is coming from the girl who can't have someone touch her casually without having a panic attack?
I admit that it wasn't that casual, but still - seems like the pot calling the kettle black. I immediately lose my train of thought as she skips back and takes my hand again, the little flower crushed between our fingers. I have no idea what I was thinking or where my thoughts were headed, because I am now completely focused on this little fairy dancing beside me. Her hand still feels very warm, but it doesn't surprise me anymore. A cool electricity runs between us whenever we are touching. I have no idea what it is or what to call it, but I know I am beginning to crave it, my skin missing hers when she skips on ahead. Even when she just walks next to me, not touching, I can feel the heat of her skin like the sun radiating toward my arm in the late afternoon.
Of course, if it were the sun, her expression might not be so relaxed. I doubt she has ever seen one of my kind in the sunlight, much less one with so many scars. They show up with glaring intensity, as if each one is powered by its own fuel source. I have never really paid much attention to their presence before, but I am suddenly self-conscious. I wonder, almost adolescently, what Alice thinks of them. What strange person does she bring out in me? I have never cared for another's opinion as much as I care for hers. There are so many questions and each answer seems to only bring more. I may spend my entire eternal existence trying to figure this deceptive little woman out.