Title: In Jasper's Care
Author: Elisabeth_l and NiceIceEdward
Character's/Pairing: Edward/Bella, Jasper and other canon characters
Spoilers: Twilight, New Moon and Eclipse, BD never happened so no spoilers, AU
Summary: Edward and Alice discover Jasper and Bella's disappearance, which leads to speculation, confusion and accusations and concerns about Treaty lines and boundaries.
"Alice, why are there only sixty-four chairs? We're supposed to—"
"Because Mr. Newton and his wife are going to cancel." I tried very hard not to hope that their son would stay away as well. Bella likes him, after all.
"Does that mean preparations are done for today?" My question seemed to insult Alice, and she was racking her brain, trying to invent one more chore for me to do. I grinned. "Good. Now can you please let everyone have a break? "
I led her towards the stairs as I said this, sat down, and made her sit beside me. Her indignant expression changed when she looked at the door. It was decorated with a white arch, covered in white roses. It was her favorite part of the room. I was particularly fond of the aisle we created. It was short. Bella would like that.
I let my mind wander to Bella, whom Alice had relieved of chores earlier. Or rather, Bella had outsmarted her by not hanging around the house. I smiled as I remembered how Bella had reacted upon finding me on the roof, proof that I had fallen slave to Alice the wedding warrior. She had laughed when I was called back for more chores. I realized I hadn't seen her since then.
Alice's chuckle brought me back from my train of thoughts. "I really have been rough on all of you, haven't I?" she asked me with a slightly sheepish smile. She didn't need my outspoken confirmation though, and continued. "I was a bit put out when Emmett and Rosalie snuck up to their room, obviously trying to avoid me, but I suppose I can't blame them."
As if on cue, Emmett's and Rosalie's thoughts flooded my mind. Rosalie was asking Emmett how her hair looked, fishing for compliments. Emmett was hoping she would drop it soon, he knew he wasn't good at complimenting her. With words anyway. I tuned them out, only to hear Carlisle and Esme next, both thinking about their own wedding. I hadn't realized they had retreated to Carlisle's study. My family seemed to have found a way to stay clear of Alice. A thought struck me.
"Where's Jasper? I can't hear him." Alice knew what I meant. Usually, even when I blocked out everyone's thoughts, I could still sense their presence if they were around. Their thoughts were never less than whispers. Not hearing Jasper meant that he wasn't around the house. I briefly wondered how I could have been so distracted that I wasn't aware of his absence.
Suddenly, Alice's worried thoughts filled my head. Jazz. …no visions, blind. Werewolves…treaty line… Dammit, Jasper! …please…nothing. Alice sighed, knowing that she didn't have to explain anything to me. I truly despised myself for doubting Jasper like this, but I briefly feared he might have hurt Bella. An array of possible catastrophes flitted through my mind then, before I chastised myself. I had to ask, though. "What about Bella?"
This time I focused on Alice's thoughts more. Bella. Where is she? Come on Bella, where are you? …I can't see her. She's near werewolves too. Great. I cut off her train of thoughts, before they became anxious or even accusatory. I knew myself well enough to know I could not deal with that now.
"We'll have to go find them," I told Alice, thinking they must be together if they're both around werewolves. Alice's thoughts were centered around the treaty, and the possibility that the treaty line had been crossed. Not for a second did she doubt Jasper as I had. It made me feel like a very unworthy brother, but I pushed that thought to the back of my mind, instead focusing on Bella, and how much danger she would be in. I realized that, if it had really come to a confrontation between Jasper and the werewolves, Bella would be safest of all, having both Jasper and the werewolves protecting her from the other.
Alice turned to me, nodding her head. "I'll go tell Carlisle about… this," she waved her arms, as if that would make it any clearer, "and then we should go." She was off immediately, not waiting for my response.
I suddenly realized the absurdity of this situation. Bella had been around werewolves before, of course, mostly with Jacob. Whenever she was, I would worry. I would ask Alice if she could see Bella, and she would answer me with an exasperated 'no, of course not, don't be stupid, Edward'. She misunderstood my question, though. As long as Alice couldn't see Bella, that meant she was relatively safe. As much as I disliked Jacob, as little as I trusted him and his anger management, I knew Bella was safer around him than alone. As long as Alice was unable to see Bella, she would at least be around the werewolves.
Now, though, it worried me. Bella wasn't just with the werewolves, she was with Jasper too. As long as both Jasper and the werewolves kept their calm, everything was fine.
That had me worried.
Suddenly Alice was in front of me, looking impatient. She took my hand, dragging me with her. We started running, slowly at first, finding a trail. Bella's scent was easiest to follow. She and Jasper had walked along the river for a while, and then crossed the bridge. On the edge of the forest Alice stopped, and it didn't take me long to know why.
I could hear the faint thuds of four paws, running our way. One look at Alice, and we agreed to keep following Bella and Jasper's path.
We were a few steps into the forest when the scent washed over me in the slight breeze. I had almost forgotten how badly werewolves reek, even in their human form. Alice smelled it too.
"There was only one of them." Alice sounded as relieved as I felt.
"Not just one of the pack, Alice. It's Seth." This calmed Alice even more. Seth and I had become quite good friends. If Bella and Jasper were with Seth, in human form no less, there really was nothing to worry about.
Except for one thing, maybe.
There was a flash in the corner of my eye, and another putrid smell hit my nose. The werewolf we'd heard just minutes ago had disappeared behind a tree, but not before I heard flashes of its thoughts. Or rather, her thoughts.
Leah—in human form this time—stepped away from the tree she had just vanished behind, and before I could warn Alice, she started her tirade.
"WHAT have you done to my brother?! Where is he? And why the hell were you on our grounds? Oh, don't you give me that look, bloodsucker! Don't you dare act all innocent now. Just because Seth likes you," she spit that out like venom, "doesn't give you the right to cross the line."
Alice was quicker to answer than I was, as I was still baffled by the fact that Jasper apparently crossed the treaty line.
"You listen to me, you little miss PMS were-wench!" I hadn't seen Alice this fierce in a long time. "We haven't even seen Seth, and we certainly didn't cross any lines today! Unlike yourself, by the way. Why don't you tell me where Jasper is? Because you seem to know a lot more than we do!"
I could tell from Leah's thoughts that she knew as much as we did, which was not much at all. I interrupted Leah when she was about to retort. She took a few steps back when I came to stand in between her and Alice. She briefly thought I was going to attack her, but I held up my hands. This calmed her down.
"Look, Leah, I understand that you're worried about your brother, but we don't know where he is. We think he might be with Jasper and Bella, but—"
The scent hit me like a tidal wave when I took one step closer to Leah. I froze. This could not be happening. I walked towards the scent, barely noticing Leah's panic as I came even closer to her. If I had a heart, it would've stopped beating, and sunk to the bottom of my stomach.
Aro was here.
I started running around, trying to find where they had gone. Trying desperately to smell Bella. I was only vaguely aware of Leah's confusion and Alice's fear, when I found two more scents. Jane and Felix were here too. This could only mean two things. Either they had already come for Bella, and had taken her and Jasper, because she was still mortal; or they were abducted. I refused to think the latter option through.
The dread that had flooded my mind seemed to be overflowing as I turned to Alice. She looked as frustrated and panicked as I felt.
"I think I know who crossed the treaty line…" I really did not want to tell Alice that Jasper was in more danger than he had probably ever been in. "Aro, Jane, and Felix are here."
Alice's mind went blank, which was a first. The expression that crossed her face broke my heart. She looked helpless, lost. Powerless. It frightened me. I took some comfort in the fact that Bella's scent was still the heaviest. She must still have been alive when she left this spot.
We should try to find them… Alice's thought was only a whisper—whether because of my lack of concentration or hers, I didn't know. I nodded anyway. We should hurry.
"What are you talking about?" Leah piped in. "What's going on?"
I looked over at Leah, knowing that we didn't have time to explain this to her. "Seth's in danger. There are other vampires around, dangerous ones. We could use your help."
I didn't wait for any response (I was unsure if Leah had understood my fast rant), I simply ran, following the merging scents of Bella, Jasper, Seth, Jane, Aro, and Felix. The thought of the six of them together was paradoxical. It hurt my head, and made me sick with dread.
I could hear Alice on my heels, and the cadence of four paws behind her.
I didn't know how long we had run (seconds or minutes) when I heard a loud, thunderous noise behind me. I looked over my shoulder, and stopped running. Alice was standing still, her eyes unfocused, a dead stare in them. Leah, getting back on her feet, had apparently run into her. I realized suddenly that Alice was having a vision again.
In her mind, I saw Bella. My chest constricted, and relief washed over me as I realized she was still alive. She was led to a small plane by Felix. So was Jasper. Behind them were Caius and Jane. So Caius was there too. This didn't look good.
Alice blinked her eyes, and turned to look at me. It was clear from her vision that they were at an airport, we just didn't know which one. It was also clear that Seth was either left behind at the very moment Alice had her vision, or… killed. Either way—safe or dead—there was nothing we could do for Seth anymore. Alice was thinking along those lines as well. We should get back to Carlisle. If anyone can help us… I nodded, and directed my eyes towards Leah. Alice chewed her bottom lip as she caught on. Telling Leah would not be easy.
We ran back to the house, though slowly enough for Leah to keep up with us. On the way, Alice and I explained the situation. It was hard to convince her that searching for Seth at this point would do no good. She mentally threw some very foul profanities my way (I was glad Alice could not hear them), before admitting we were right.
Just then I heard Carlisle call out to us from near the house. That usually meant trouble. Not that we hadn't established that ourselves yet, but it was still unsettling. It was also frustrating that Carlisle might know something we didn't.
When we came into his view, he immediately started speaking, apparently aware of the situation, and not the slightest bit surprised by Leah's presence (relieved even?). "Billy Black just called. Mere minutes ago, Seth phoned him," a tiny shred of hope, "requesting that Jacob come pick him up at SeaTac Airport." I exchanged a look with Alice, which didn't go unnoticed with Carlisle. You know that Bella and Jasper were there? I nodded. "Aro and Jane took Bella and Jasper, hoping to use them as leverage. Seth was released and is safe now. He was used as distraction in the purest sense of the word." He pointedly looked at Alice then, and the brilliance and inevitability of Aro's plan pierced through me like physical pain I hadn't felt in over eighty years.
It was as I feared then. "It's worse, Carlisle," I told him. "Caius is with them as well." It was strange and frightening to see my father's face like this—so blank that it appeared even paler than usual.
The rest of the family had appeared behind him, and we all wore the same expressions, shock, worry and anxiety, except for one. Emmett looked murderous. We walked into the living room, already discussing the plan of action, while Carlisle turned to Leah, telling her that she would be needed at home when Jacob brought Seth back.
We tried to hurry through our options, but soon came to the excruciating conclusion that there was nothing we could do. It was unlikely that we could intercept them, which meant that we would arrive in Volterra just after Bella and Jasper would. A confrontation would surely follow, and Carlisle convinced us that we stood no chance. We would simply end up trading Alice and me for Bella and Jasper.
Again, the rare feeling of pure hatred coursed through me. It hurt to realize it, but following them would only give them exactly what they wanted. All we could do for now was wait until Alice could see a more defined future. Aro had, of course, found a way to make the future as cloudy as possible, leaving several options undecided, all as inevitably successful as the next.
And even once we knew their plan, Carlisle reminded us, fighting would be no use. I was becoming more desperate, powerless, and frustrated by the second. I could not grasp the idea that I was losing Bella, and, worst of all, there was nothing I or anyone could do about it. Quite frankly, this felt worse than leaving her behind in the forest. At least back then, I was in control. I had made the decision of living without Bella, knowing that she would be safe in that way. The knowledge that I could go back whenever I wanted kept me going, even though I knew I never would.
Now, though, Bella was taken away from me, she wasn't safe, and I couldn't stand the knowledge that it was impossible to get her back. The frustration was like a vicious circle, clouding my mind, replacing all reason with something that resembled only rage. I suddenly felt the need to destroy our newly acquired TV.
But my train of thought was interrupted by a sharp Edward! I spun around to face Alice, unaware that I had already made my way towards the television. Her thoughts flooded my mind, erasing all dread that I felt just seconds before. She was having another vision.
I saw Jasper inside the plane he and Bella got on earlier. He was holding Bella, protecting her. With a shock I realized that the plane was out of control in the turbulence. Suddenly, Jasper picked Bella up in his arms, and jumped out of the plane. They were falling now, and falling.
Alice blinked, and I realized the room had gone quiet. Everyone was staring at her, but Alice was simply gazing back at me. Her thoughts were indecipherable, a mad chaos, and I had to block her out to concentrate on my own.
What did this mean? Turbulence. A plane crash? Maybe, we didn't know. All we knew was that Jasper had taken Bella, and jumped off the plane. Rescuing her. It was a strange situation to be relieved about, but putting it in the proper context, I realized this was the best thing that could've happened to them at this moment.
I wanted to shout out my happiness, but something was stopping me. I looked at my family who were listening to Alice's description of her vision. Why weren't they happy, and why couldn't I feel the happiness that I knew I should feel?
Rosalie asked then if Alice knew where they had jumped. She didn't, of course. All her vision showed was a stormy sky. It dawned on me that even though Bella would be slightly safer after that crash than she was now—if she survived—there was still absolutely nothing we could do.
Alice was in front of me now, searching my eyes. Please, Edward. We can't know where they are, not until I have another vision, but I do know one thing. She paused, squinting her eyes, making sure I was listening. I raised my eyebrows, and she continued. The reason I had that vision was because Jasper decided to jump. He resolved to rescue Bella, and that is the safest you can possibly wish her to be at this moment. Trust Jasper, please.
Alice was right, of course. There was nothing I could do for Bella, but Jasper could and would do everything to keep my Bella safe. I loathed the idea of stepping back, accepting that I had no control over the situation, but reality had a way of forcing me into that powerless position.
Bella was in Jasper's care now.