This is my very first fanfic, ever. Constructive criticism would be very helpful, considering the circumstances. This story, is basically, the direct followup from the end of the book. It starts, where the book ends. After reading the book, and watching the movie, I couldn't help but think, that the story wasn't finished yet. Therefore, I decided to write a followup. That, and I don't like books with sad endings. I know it defeats the theme of the book, I know the author didn't want it this way, I know its not supposed to be like this, but this is FAN fiction, and I can do whatever I damn please, thank you very much. Besides, I hate seeing Leslie dead. It is so tragic. It completely ruins Jess's life, and I frankly thought it was "out of the blue". Technically, she could still be alive. Yes I know, its a small chance. A "VERY" small chance. But, its possible! It never actually "shows" Leslie's body in the book, or the movie. It says in the book that "...they had decided to have the body cremated and were going to take the ashes to his family home in Pennsylvania tommorow." It could be, (this is just a theory), that they never found the body; and it was just a preemptive thought to when they found it. Then, when they left for Pennsylvania, they could have never found the body, and could have come back, the day after the book ends, for a proper funeral, guiding whereever her body is, to its final resting place. That's what the entire premise of this fanfic is about. That, and their adventures afterward. I'm sorry if you all don't like it, but I can't stand Leslie dead! Maybell in my opinion, makes a sucky replacement. Jess can't have his little sis as his girlfriend. Hehe. I plan to add 5 or 6 more "parts" to the story, but if its going really well, I'll add more. Each part is going to have 2-3 inbook chapters. Like I said, please comment on errors that I could improve on. They would be greatly appreciated.
Bridge to Terabithia Part 1
Chapter 13 cont.
"Tell Joyce Ann something that's a secret between you and me?" The idea seemed to horrify her.
"Yeah, I was just thinking about it."
Her face sagged. "Joyce Ann ain't nothing but a baby."
"Well, she wouldn't likely be a queen first off. You'd have to train her and stuff."
"Queen? Who gets to be queen?"
"I'll explain it when I finish, OK?"
And when he finished, he put flowers in her hair and led her across the bridge-the great bridge into Terabithia-which might look to someone with no magic in him like a few planks across a nearly dry gully.
"Shhh," he said. "Look."
"Can't you see 'um?" he whispered. "All the Terabithians standing on tiptoe to see you."
"Shhh, yes. There's a rumor going around that the beautiful girl arriving today might be the queen they've been waiting for."
"Am I the queen Jess?"
"Only if I'm the king", he said brightly.
Chapter 14: Dead?
The next morning , Jess couldn't stop thinking about Leslie. No matter how hard he tried, how much encouragement that he received, he never seemed to get her out of his head. He still couldn't accept the fact that she was dead. It was impossible. He didn't sleep a wink at all at night.
He stood up groggily, and trudged down to the table, where they were having eggs and bacon.
Of course, Ellie and Brenda were fighting about who should get the last of the bacon, and
Maybell was busy playing with her Barbies. His mom was whistling as she cooked the last of the bacon. As Jesse sat down, their father came in from outside.
"Jesse, you're gonna hafta miss school today. Today is Leslie's funeral."
"But I thought they were going to cremate her, and have the funeral in Pennslyvania.
"Turns out, they changed their plans. They came up here, to give Leslie a proper funeral. After all, here is where she loved most. "
"When does it start?"
"An hour. So get dressed, and get ready. Your mom and I will come with you."
"Brenda, you're in charge."
An hour passed, and Jesse picked the best clothes for the occasion. He picked one of his dad's old tuxedo's, which was a little bit musty, and smelled funny. Its' sheen was faded, and some of the buttons were falling off.
"It'd had to do.", He said to himself.
When they were all ready, they solemnly walked towards the old Perkins house. None of them said a word. His mother was dressed in this black dress, wearing high heels, carrying a small black purse. His father was dressed in this seedy tuxedo, one a used salesman would wear. They arrived, just when the funeral was about to start. Outside, parked the U-Haul truck, as well as the Burke's car. There were various other cars also, but it was still a small amount.
"Dear friends, and neighbors. We are gathered here, to pay our respects, and gratitude, to Ms. Leslie Burke, who touched us, and changed us all.", said Bill.
"She was a great person, a..." Bill continued, as Jess looked around.
He saw his English teacher there, as well as their Music teacher. He saw lots of people he didn't know, probably relatives, but other then that, he was the only kid there.
"..loved. We would all pay respects and final wishes to her in person but...you see...
Jesse suddenly looked up, as if this confession had a great importance.
"We don't have Leslie with us today. Her body was never found. Of course, she is presumed dead, and the police are looking for the corpse, as we speak. There were witnesses to her dead body, but she floated downstream before we could reach her, and was never seen since. We are gathered here, to pray for her lost soul, and for hopes that it may guide her into an eternal rest."
"I thought you said you found her body in the creek.", Jess said suddenly, above the silence.
"Well yes, and no. We found her body in the creek, but it floated away before we could retrieve it. She looked as dead as a doornail though.", Bill said gravely.
"Like I said, the police are looking for her remains as we speak. We plan to have her cremated, as soon as we find her."
"So she might NOT be dead?", Jess said in a rage, emphasizing "Not" so profoundly, that it immediately gathered all eyes upon him.
"Well, no. Its a very small chance that she is alive.
"WHAT?", Jesse said, almost screaming.
Everybody was whispering comments around him, most likely about him, and his father was hissing in his ear to keep his mouth shut.
"No! She might not be dead!", he screamed trying to get out, as his mother and father was surpressing him. He broke their grip harshly.
"Jess, what the hell do you think you're doing? Get back here this instant!", his father said outraged.
"Get away from me!", he said, pushing them away, then running through the crowd, and bursting open the door. Everybody was following him, trying to get him back, but he wouldn't listen.
He fled the old Perkins house, as fast as his legs would take him. He was sprinting, in and out of trees, trying to get to the place of her death. His tuxedo was torn, and his legs were full of cuts from the underbrush, but he made it. Panting, he frantically looked around for Leslie.
"LESLIE!", he screamed at the top of his voice, but there was no answer.
He ran along the stream, trying to find some sign of Leslie. Yet, there was nothing. He did this for about 30 minutes, then before giving up entirely, he noticed something. It was a piece of clothing torn on the bush, the exact same kind that Leslie was supposedly wearing the day she died.
"She must have gone this way.", Jess said to himself. He followed the path, for another hour, until the river finally ended. There was no more wood, just rolling green hills, and pasture. The river ended at a drainpipe, that continued further. He knew that Leslie's body couldn't fit into it, so he looked around hurriedly for any sign of her body.
"LESLIE!", he screamed at the top of his voice again. At first, there was no answer, and he looked crestfallen. He strained his ear to hear any sign, any sign that Leslie wasn't dead.
He didn't find any. He bent down on his knees, and started crying.
"Leslie, why did you have to die? I wanted to, should of, took you to the museum. IT's MY fault that you are dead! I did this to you Leslie, I'M SORRYY!", he said, bawling and yelling at the same time, with tears coming down his face.
Half-expecting Leslie to respond, he started to take the walk back to his house. He was about to set back in the woods, when he thought he heard a voice. He suddenly went back to the drainpipe spot, and started to search frantically for Leslie again. Again, he didn't find anything. He was starting to think he was just crazy, and hearing voices, when he heard the voice again.
He strained his ears, and was completely silent, so he could hear the miniscule voices, and there it was again.
"Jess.." It said, extremely faintly.
An idea popped into his head. Maybe it was Leslie!
"Leslie! Where are you!", he screamed.
"Over here..." the voice said again, faint as a wisp.
He followed the voice, to a bush where he didn't check. Inside the bush, was Leslie! She was in horrible state though. Her eyes were closed, and she had many cuts and nicks all over her. Her clothes were torn, and she looked paler then usual. There was dried blood on her forehead.
She opened her eyes at Jesse, and managed out a weak smile.
"Jese...I love you.", she said with great exurbarance. That must have used up some last bit of energy, because Leslie closed her eyes and fell limp.
Jesse was frantically looking around, trying to find a pulse. At last, he found one. It was fluttering, and was very weak. She was alive, but barely. He had to get her to the hospital, now. He picked Leslie up, bridal style, and ran as fast as he could to the Perkins house. It was about a 30 minute run, then a 30 minute drive to the hospital.
"Come on Leslie.", he said half to himself, half to Leslie.
"Just 1 hour. . That's it. That's all I...we need. Just 1 hour", he kept repeating to himself, over and over, as he continually ran as fast as he could. He ducked and ran throughout bush, and various forest creatures. He narrowly missed falling into the river himself a couple of times; beccause he wasn't paying attention to whre he was going. All he could care about, was getting Leslie to the hospital. Nothing else in his life mattered. After what seemed like an eternity of running, he finally made it to the remains of the old rope, and the newly built bridge. He then ran as fast as he could to the Perkins house, where the entire crowd was gaping in awe, as he, who looked very odd in a torn tuxedo, was carrying Leslie, bridal style, with an almost barbaric look on his face. He went up to them as fast as possible and screamed.
"Get her to the hospital NOW!" he said, as Bill was frantically fondling in his pockets for his keys, and ran to their car, where Jesse and him went, Leslie still in his arms, and sped off to the distance.
The crowd was awe-struck. It was truly a sight to behold.
"You don't see that every day.", Jesse's father said, as he broke the silence.
Chapter 15: Revival
The car was literally, going as fast as possible. The car was gravely silent, except for Leslie's ragged breathing, and the squealing of the car's tires, as Mr. Burke rode like a maniac. He seemed almost entranced by this. The possibility that Leslie might still survive. He didn't even bother asking Jesse, because he knew that Jesse wouldn't want her to go to the hospital so urgently if she was dead.
Luckily, the police had their lunch break at noon, so that there was nobody to pull them over, or to hinder their travel. There was one time though, when this old man, driving an Oldsmobile, drove in front of them. No matter how many times Mr. Burke honked his horn, the man just stayed at 20 miles an hour. After about 10 seconds, Mr. Burke suddenly took the car off of the road, until he was front of the old man, and sped off into the distances, at speeds rivaling race car drivers.
Other then that, the car trip was pretty silent. Jesse didn't say a word, he just focused on cradling Leslie. Which, he thought to himself, was quite nice. He liked having Leslie snuggled up to him, even in this dire situation. At last, they reached the hospital, and Jesse and Mr. Burke immediately jumped out of the car, without bothering to close the doors or lock it, and rushed into the hospital. It was a pretty small hospital, but effective nonetheless. They immediately went into the Emergency room, where nurses came, and immediately took Leslie away. Mr. Burke and Jesse, were both extremely relieved that they were able to get Leslie to the hospital on time, and that she will be safe. Mr. Burke went out to properly park his car. Afterwards, they sat in the waiting room, and, started talking.
"So, where did you find Leslie?", asked Bill.
"I found her where the river ended, in a bush. She was about a 30 minutes run away from where she fell."
"Jesse..",he said, as he embraced Jesse strongly, "I can't thank you enough, for what you have done. You have saved my daughters life."
"If there is anything I can do to make this up to you, please, let me know!"
They waited in the waiting room, for hours, but still, no word of Leslie. Finally, a doctor came out of the emergency ward, obviously with news on his face.
"You're lucky to bring her to us when you did. If you waited 15 more minutes, Leslie would be gone."
"Is she alright?", Jesse asked.
"We got her condition to be stabilized. She's still in a coma though. It may be days, weeks, before she ever wakes up. We've done all we can do now. All that can be done is wait.
"Can we see her?"
Guests are not allowed to see the patients until they've been here for at least a day If you like, come back tommorow, and you can see her. It won't make much difference though, she won't be able to say or do anything. "
"It's very important.", said Bill.
They walked out of the hospital, to the car. Mr. Burke's spirits were uplifted tenfold. He was joyous, all of the ride back to their house, and started singing. Jesse joined in. After 30 minutes had passed, they pulled up to their driveway, and got out of the car. There was no one to be seen. When they went inside, the entire room was gravely silent. Nobody was talking, and some people were crying. Everybody thought that she hadn't survived.
Mr. Burke, trying to surpress his joy, put on a blank face, and stood in the middle of the room.
"Everybody, I have something to announce."
The crowd of people, immediately drew all attention to him.
"Leslie, my daughter, and whom we love so much...", he said gravely.
Everybody in the crowd, looked crestfallen, as if Leslie died in the hospital.
"Has been saved, thanks to the heroic, selfless, acts, of Jess Aaron, who, despite our doubts, searched for her, and saved her life.
The crowd was silent, and awestruck. Then suddenly, came an uproar. One so loud, that it could raise the dead from miles away. His mother had tears of joy and happiness for her soon, and his father was exuberantly patting him on the back. Various people came up to him and started thanking him, and a news camera came up to him and started asking him questions. They were left over from Leslie's funeral, and they were about to leave, when Jess came back. Instead of a funeral, they had a party, to commemorate Jess in his heroic deed. When they finally came back to their house, they were still beaming with glee.
"Uh, mom, dad, have you guys gone crazy?", Brenda asked, looking at their smiling faces.
"Brenda, your brother is a hero!"
"Pfft, whatever..", she said nonchalantly.
His father was just about to retaliate, when the news came on.
"Channel 5 news, with your anchorman, Steve Weathers!"
"Good evening folks, I'm Steve Weathers, and this is today's news."
"Local farm boy, Jess Aaron, has recently saved the life of presumed dead girl, Leslie Burke. He has been deemed a hero by many of the community, and is revered by many. Details at 7. "
"Jess, I'm so proud of you!", his mother said, as she embraced Jess tightly.
"Good job son, good job.", his father said as he pat him on the shoulder.
"Jess, now that Leslie's back, will I still be the Queen of Terabithia?", Maybell said hopefully.
He just laughed, as the sun set over the horizon, and all was at peace, in the Aarons' household.
I hope it wasn't that bad. Please, read and review!