Status: Active

The Strength of Fragility


Alice danced around the staircase, humming slightly underneath her breath and a dreamy look in her eyes. She twirled on the tips of her toes as light as a ballet dancer and jumped as if she were made of air, to land on top of the kitchen counter where Jasper was reading the newspaper.

Jasper smiled at his sister, as she took his hand and examined his palm, her small finger tracing the lines on the underside of his hand. Her feet dangled from the counter now, waving back and forth slowly and the blue eye shadow she was wearing shimmered softly under the light. Things would have been so easier if they had ended up together, Jasper thought to himself quietly, but they had never seen each other as anything more than siblings. Sometimes life had different plans for them all. Rosalie was never meant for Edward, Bella Emmett was meant for Rosalie. They had found the perfect hand to match their own and as Jasper looked at Alice holding his hand, hers wasn’t his.

Alice looked at him suddenly, and her golden eyes, recently fed were so bright and sparkling that they stunned Jasper for a moment. She had that look, the look that meant she was planning something and Jasper shifted in his seat, suddenly aware of everything around him. He heard Emmett chuckle as he sensed what was going on and he looked at his brother who shrugged to show he was in the dark as much as Jasper was.

Alice tugged at Jasper’s hand, “Jazz,” she whined and Jasper fought the urge to roll his eyes,

“Yes Alice, my darling sister?”

“Let’s go shopping. Will you take me, please, please, please?” Alice blinked her eyes several times at Jasper in the way she knew he found hard to resist on any of his sisters. He was a real pushover like that.

“Shopping Alice? Do we have to?” Jasper moaned, looking at Alice with which he hoped was a pitiful expression. But it didn’t work on Alice, of course it didn’t.


“I don’t know how you always drag me into these situations Alice,” Jasper muttered as he pulled onto the main road heading to Port Angeles. Alice just grinned in the front passenger seat and fiddled with the knobs of the radio.

“It’s because I’m your favourite Jasper, obviously.”

Jasper smiled, and looked out the window for a moment, catching the eye of the other driver. Her red hair was tied back in a tight pony, and her large brown eyes were focused on the road, until she sensed his gaze and looked at him. The pale sun caught his eyes for a moment, making them glimmer dangerously and he moved his skin away from the window where the sun rays could catch it. Clouds were rolling in, they were in no danger, and Alice would know if they were. The other driver stared at him, almost crashing into the back of the car in front of her. Jasper turned his head away, focusing on the road once more. She had been pretty, very pretty but nothing...nothing compared to Isabel. Izzie...

Jasper found himself becoming lost in thought and Alice gazed at him, a smile gracing her small lips. She knew that look in Jasper’s eyes, he was thinking of Izzie. He was completely infatuated with her, if only she wasn’t so hard to figure out Alice would have gotten something happening by now. A touch, a kiss...anything to see Jasper happy, and in love. Because there was no doubt that Jasper was falling in love for Izzie. But those feelings, were they one sided? Alice loved Izzie like a sister already and though Izzie seemed so open and happy...deep down she knew she was guarded, keeping something protected, a secret she didn’t want others to find out. And she was sad...something was making her sad. Alice needed to know what...but maybe Jasper could find that out.

Alice smiled, secretly willing them to get closer to Port Angeles and when they did, and Jasper found a parking spot, Alice grabbed his hand in hers, and dragged him into the nearest shop. Jasper stood, obedient as always as Alice tried on around a thousand dresses, and didn’t buy any of them. After the tenth shop, Jasper managed to shrug Alice away, push her into a shoe store and tell her firmly, she could find him in an hour at his favourite book store. Alice nodded, a strange look in her eyes and a knowing smile on her face but Jasper shrugged it off, crossing the road and hurrying down several streets until he found the sanctuary of the small store.

He breathed in the familiar smell of the old, second hand books and the smell of coffee, that though the taste was not appealing to him, the smell reminded him of the old days, of the old coffee in a silver cup by the mountains, freezing cold with only a small fire and his horse for company, when he was evacuating the women and children. Before Maria, before venom...before Izzie.

And then he stopped at a second row of books near the back of the store, when he heard a familiar voice drift towards him from the small seating area, it was slightly masked by the noise of the coffee machines, and the other quiet conversations going on around but he’ recognise that sweet voice anywhere.

He paused to listen for a moment, not daring to move from his place unless she’d see him.

“But why do I have to go back? The premiere isn’t until two weeks Maurice, I have plenty of time until then. I was hoping to arrive in LA just a few days beforehand not fly out by Monday!” Izzie sounded distressed and she sounded tired. Jasper could note the exasperation in her voice, and he could hear how her voice pitched in annoyance. He sent out a wave of calm towards her, and he immediately felt her relax.

Maurice, whoever he was, began to speak, “Isabel, Izzie...come now. Questions are being asked about where you have been. There hasn’t been a sight of you in the past few months, rumours are circulating. And then what about Joachim, he misses you.”

Something pierced Jasper that was sent to him through Izzie. A feeling of longing, of pain. “How is he?” she asked quietly.

Maurice sighed, “He’s heart-broken, confused...he wants answers but I promised you I’d stay silent about all this. And I have...even if I don’t think it’s the best idea. But please Izzie, come back to LA for the few weeks, you’re needed for interviews, for photo shoots. Zac can’t do it on his own without his leading lady. There’s only so much time given for these things.”

Izzie laughed sharply, harshly, “Time...yeah, that’s exactly what I need Maurice, more time. There’s no time for anything anymore. This is why I’m here, with friends. I’m happy here, I’m...I’m starting to relax...I’ve made my peace with what has happened and now I just have to wait. I don’t want to go back.”

“It’s just for two week darling. I promise you, you get to choose the interviews, you can have a meeting with Zac, he knows doesn’t he?”

“He knows I needed time off, he doesn’t know precisely why but I think he’s guessed. I just can’t have the press knowing, or Joachim. Especially not Jo.”

Jasper heard a sleeve dragged across the table as Maurice leaned over to clasp Izzie’s hand. “Okay, I’ll arrange your flight details and I’ll email you. Okay?”

Izzie nodded and then Jasper stepped out from behind the shelves, “Mornin’ Izzie, “He stated quietly.

Izzie turned in surprise and a delighted smile blessed her features, “Jasper! I didn’t see you come in!” a flash of worry ran through her as she wondered if Jasper had overheard the conversation. But of course he didn’t, unless he had superhearing or something.

Jasper gulped as Izzie got up from the table and hugged him, her scent overcoming him for a moment. That rose scent. But it was her dress making him gulp with desire, to stiffen so he didn’t grab her then and there. It was to just above her knees and skin tight. Her legs were long and her feet encased in stilettos. Her dark aviators were perched on her head, and her designer handbag swung from the crook of her elbow. For the first time, Jasper was looking at Izzie Steele, superstar, actress, A list celebrity. She was fabulous.

“ look amazing!” he gasped and Izzie giggled,

“Oh, it’s just something I threw on. Oh, this is Maurice, my agent, Maurice this is Mr Jasper Hale, a good friend of mine. His family’s been taking very good care of me.”

Maurice shook Jasper’s hand, and Jasper gripped it firmer than he had too. He gave Maurice that look that sent chills through people and sure enough, the man’s forehead broke out into a sweat in fear. He was a middle aged man, tall with dark hair, tanned from a life in the sun. Very...Hollywood. But he cared somewhat for Izzie, Jasper could see that.

Maurice got up to go and nodded to Jasper, gave Izzie a kiss goodbye and left the shop. Jasper smiled at Izzie, and sat down whilst she finished her coffee.

“I love it here,” he stated to her. “This’s my favourite. It’s quiet, peaceful...I come here to think.”

Izzie nodded, “I understand. Though...I could find places like that anywhere in Forks. It’s so different to LA; everything’s so fast paced there. It’s nice to just...rewind and relax. I’ve really needed it.”

She gave a deep breath of contentment, and Jasper averted his eyes away from her chest which swelled against her tight dress. He was, after all, still a male. And that dress was begging to be ripped off in a fit of passion.

“Oh shit. Oh fuck!” Izzie whispered and Jasper’s eyes widened.

“What is it?”

He looked to where Izzie was staring, where several photographers were converging outside the door. “How did they know I was here?” she whispered. “Fucking Maurice, they must have followed there a back door to this place Jazz?”

She gripped his hand, and it was so warm in his. Jasper nodded and getting up, dragged her through the back, the owners knew him well enough to take no notice of this peculiar behaviour, and then as they hit the air outside, they heard the shouts of the paparazzi in the front realising what they’d done.

Jasper didn’t think, but scooped Izzie into his arms and ran. He ran fast for a human, but slow for a vampire, enough not to make the girl in his arms suspicious.

He ran down the road, knowing where he was going and finally found the back entrance to the old abandoned Port Angeles library. He cracked open the door, breaking the lock without Izzie seeing. He brought her inside where it was dark and slightly creepy. Izzie shivered, and Jasper noticing this, took off his shirt, wrapping it around her shoulders so he stood only in his vest.

“Aren’t you cold?” she asked quietly and Jasper shook his head.

He led her over to the small corner where he knew there was a couch and clicked on a lamp that was there and still working, casting a dim light over them.

Izzie looked around, “How do you know of this place?” she whispered.

Jasper smiled, “I found it a few years ago, before it shut down and they moved to a bigger building. I like this one though...there’s something magical about it.”

Izzie closed her eyes, “It’s as if the world outside doesn’t exist, and it’s just me and here Jasper.”

Jasper smiled, and if his heart beat, it would have been racing. Izzie was still gripping his hand, her grip was soft though and she was running her thumb over his skin lightly.

“You’re rather beautiful you know,” she whispered and Jasper looked at her, she was gazing at him, her eyes flicking over every part of his body. Her other hand came to his arm, and her fingers traced the scars that could be seen, “What happened?”

“I’ll tell you...someday but not now,” he whispered and she nodded content with that answer. She looked up again, meeting his gaze, and this time there was nothing to break them apart as their heads came closer and their lips met, in a sweet and tender first kiss.
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