A/N: Hope you enjoyed it! I'm really swamped at the moment so it would really mean a lot to see who was actually reading this story so I know I'm not wasting anyone's time. Please review!
We all sat in the lounge room for a while longer, just hanging out and watching as Dad and Peter battled it out, game after game, each of them complaining when they lost and declaring a rematch, and then cheering when they won again. I couldn't keep track with how many times I rolled my eyes at their childish antics,
Ma seemed quiet for the rest of the afternoon. I mean, I could understand why she didn't want to talk much; her two children, me being her only daughter and Jasper basically being her son, were moving off to Texas together to go to school. It was a given that Jasper was going to move anyway to attend college in Texas, but Ma thought that she wouldn't have to say goodbye to me as well. She wished she could keep me around for at least another year. I felt bad for ruining the happy vibe that was in the house before we told them, but if this was the result of telling them when they were in a HAPPY mood, I would hate to think about what they would have said if they were in a bad mood.
I was beyond happy that Jasper and I were going Texas together. All worries about him being two thousand miles away from me, and gaining interest in another girl, were gone. Well, maybe not the thought about him getting interests in other girls, but I was less worried than what I was before. Trying to see each other outside of my school hours and his lecture hours and still have time to complete our studies will be difficult. But I could only hope we will get through it.
Stop being such a worry wart, Bella. Whatever courses Jasper chooses might not even be that time consuming. I told myself. Wow, I sound so much like a clingy girlfriend. I lifted my head from its place on Jasper's shoulder and began to stand up, Jasper grabbed my hand and made me turn to look at him, he threw me a questioning look and I shook my head and mouthed bathroom to him. He nodded and released my hand, and I made my way up the stairs and into the bathroom. I turned and locked the door; I walked over and looked at my reflection in the mirror. I studied myself.
I had naturally wavy brown hair that had small ringlets at the ends, and cascaded down my back and down to my waist. I had wide, chocolate brown eyes and the most tanned skin in the school, besides Jasper, of course. I wore a minimal amount of make-up, only a small amount of mascara. I've never felt the need to wear foundation or any cover up, my face was clear and I never had any break-outs. The occasional pimple here and there, but they never lasted long. My skin was tanned and nicely toned. I suppose I had a slim-ish figure, Ma said it was the shape of an hour glass and that I was lucky to have one, I didn't see the joy in it. I was about five feet, two inches tall, and usually had trouble reaching for things.
I think I'm decent looking, I wouldn't go as far as saying I'm beautiful, but I know that I'm not ugly, either. What I don't understand is why Jasper would take such an interest in ME during such an early age, when he could have had any of the pretty girls that were in Texas, and any of the girls that were at Forks High.
I admit that I am pretty, but Jasper, however, is a completely different story. He is sex on legs, his tall, muscular figure and his toned muscles that were defined even through his clothes, would attract a blind woman in the street, his naturally messy, honey blonde hair and his icy blue eyes, his accent.
His accent was the thing that I loved most about him, in the first few months when we moved here to Forks, he tried to hide it as best as he could; and only brought out the southern charm when he needed to get out of a hole he somehow got himself into, which was unusual for a quiet, reserved and politer young man from Texas. I told him so many times that he shouldn't hide it, but he just shook his head and shrugged it off. When he kept the charade going, I took it upon myself to express in every way possible that I didn't like that he was hiding who he was, and who we grew up to be, believe it or not, I started ignoring him. As hard as it was, I managed to ignore him for around 3 months, which was the longest fight we've ever had. He cracked first, because although we were both stubborn, I was better.
I was broken out of my reverie by a loud knock on the door. I realised I was still in the bathroom and hadn't gotten round to doing my business. I could hear Jasper's soothing voice from behind the door calling out.
"Bells, are you still in there? You've been in here a while."
"Yeah, Jazz I'll be out in a second" I called back to him.
I walked over quietly and pressed the button on the toilet, to make it sound like I flushed and ran the tap over my already-clean hands. I wiped them on a towel and walked towards the door. As soon as the lock was turned Jasper threw it open and looked me over. I blushed under his gaze.
"What took so long, gorgeous?" He asked me.
I sighed, I wasn't going to tell him my worries yet, I'll tell him another day. I shook my head at him and gave him a small smile.
"Nothing, I just stood there thinking about what we're going to do in Texas before going to the toilet" I laughed.
Jasper could tell that, that wasn't the real reason why I took so long, but he knew I'd tell him on a later date, so he let it go. He nodded stiffly and walked over to me, pulling me into his tight embrace and holding me tightly too his chest. I sighed and wrapped my arms around his waist, inhaling his scent. We stood there holding each other for a few minutes before pulling away, he leant down and gave me a quick peck on the lips and pulled me towards the stairs.
We walked down hand in hand and entered the lounge-room. There I found Dad and Peter on the X-Box still, but they looked tired and both of them were constantly rubbing their eyes from being in front of the TV for so long. I shook my head at them and turned towards Ma and Charlotte, they were both reading magazines but I could tell that Ma wasn't too far off from hitting the hay. She looks exhausted. Today must have really drained her. The past few nights she's been going to bed earlier than normal. She always works so hard at work, trying to make money for the family, the conversation we all had tonight must have done it for her. I stared at her and watched as her eyes were drooping more and more, and her head was slowly getting closer and closer to Charlotte's shoulder.
I made my way over to Mum and reached over to shake her so she was conscious enough to take her upstairs to bed, but Charlotte's hand stopped me. "Let me do that, sweetheart, you go and spend time with Jasper." She told me. I was surprised for a second, not expecting Char to step in and help Ma to bed. I nodded at her gratefully and watched and she gently shook Ma awake enough so she could lead her upstairs and to her room. Not too long after they left I heard my parents' bedroom door shut quietly and Charlotte's footsteps on the stairs. When I saw Charlotte I knew something was on her mind, she had a small worried look on her face, that you could hardly tell that was there, and I was curious as to what she was thinking about. She caught my curious glance and shook her head, silently telling me not to worry about it. I narrowed my eyes. That was the second time today she's blown me off and told me not to worry. I shrugged, turning to Jasper. Grabbing his hand, I pulled him upstairs to my bedroom.
"Jasper's sleeping over, we're off to bed" I called out quietly enough so I didn't wake mum but loud enough so that they could hear me.
I heard Peter's grunt in reply, and Charlotte's 'okay', but I sure as hell didn't miss Pa's "okay kids, no funny business or sexy time!" I groaned and blushed a deep red before dragging Jasper up the stairs and into my room. I closed the door and jumped on my bed. I was exhausted. I groaned again and rolled onto my stomach and looked up at Jasper. He was looking at me with an amused look on his face.
"What?" I asked him, touching my face to see if I had anything on there.
"Nothing," He replied. "You're just so cute when you're all flustered and embarrassed." He finished as if it was the most obvious thing in the world. I snorted and smothered my face into my pillow.
"Yeah, if being a tomato is cute then sure" I muttered. My voice muffled from the pillow. I felt a dip in the bed and Jasper crawling up to lie down with me. I turned my head and stared at him, he looked back at me and smiled.
"You may not believe it, Bells. But, in my eyes you're the most beautiful woman I've ever set eyes on." He said softly, I smiled at his sweet words and I leaned over and kissed him deeply. A moan immediately erupted from his chest and I giggled against his lips, his hands grasped my waist and he positioned himself so he was hovering over me, I wrapped my arms around his waist and pulled him close, so that I could feel his weight on me. As weird as it sounded, feeling his weight made me feel safe, and he wasn't heaps heavy either.
I could feel things getting more and more heated every second our lips were moving together. I soon pulled away for breath and he rolled off me. I snuggled into his side and rested my head on his chest. My head rose and fell with every breath that he took. He wrapped his arm around me and his other arm went behind his head, he was staring up at the ceiling, looking deep in thought.
"What's up, Jasper? Is something wrong?" I asked, worried.
He turned to me, alarmed. "No, Bella. Of course not, why would there be?" he asked me. His eyes were hiding something. I narrowed my eyes at him. "What is with everyone tonight? Do you know something that I don't?" I demanded, wanting to know what was going on. I wasn't usually nosy, but if it had something to do with this family I needed to know. Jasper's eyes softened and he turned to his side, touching his nose to mine.
"Bella," he started. "I'm just worried about your Ma." He said. I frowned, confused. "What do you mean?" I asked him, cocking my head to the side.
"Don't you think, well... she's being acting unusual recently?" He asked me, his bright eyes questioning. I frowned and shook my head at him.
"Well..." Jasper started softly, as though not to offend me. "She's been extra tired lately an-" I cut him off. "Yeah, she's been working full time all week and tonight's conversation took it out of her." I said defensively. How could he think that she was acting weird? She's the same old Ma to me. Jasper shook his head, signaling to me to let him finish. "Bells, she was coughing her guts up tonight and was drinking water like it was going to run out. I think something is up."
I narrowed my eyes at him, getting defensive. "I think that if something was wrong with Ma Jasper, she would tell me." I snapped. I didn't mean to, but we didn't keep secrets in this family. The thought of Ma potentially hiding something from me after everything we've been through hit a soft point.
Jasper held his hands up in the air. "Don't get snappy with me, Isabella. You asked what was on my mind and I'm telling you." He snapped back.
I sat up and turned to him then, remorseful. "I know, I'm sorry Jasper. It's just," I looked up at him. "You think she might be ... relapsing or something?" I asked, tears filling my eyes. Ma couldn't go through that again. We all couldn't go through that again.
Jasper sat up when he heard me sniffle. Pulling me into his lap, she wrapped his arms around me and began rocking me back and forth.
"Shhh, Bella. That's not necessarily what I meant. But, maybe we should all sit down with them and have a talk, all together." He said, trying to calm me. Nodding, I looked up at him. He wiped away a few straw tears that I couldn't catch in time and leant his forehead against mine.
"If anything is wrong," he began, "we're a tough bunch of sticks, all of us. We'll get through it together. We've done it once, we can all do it again and fight back twice as hard this time."
I threw my arms around Jasper, nuzzling my face into his neck. Words couldn't fathom how grateful I was to have such an amazing young man in my life.
Pulling back, I looked into his eyes. They smoldered at me intensely and I was entranced by them. Without thinking, I lunged at him and attached my lips to his. Freezing at first in shock, Jasper eventually melted into the kiss and pushed me back so I was lying back on the mattress. He hovered over me, our lips never breaking contact. I ran my tongue along his bottom lip and Jasper groaned, deepening the kiss with me. I wrapped my legs around his waist and pulled him onto me, savouring the feeling of his weight on top of me. I couldn't explain how I felt in this moment. Safe, loved, the list went on.
Abruptly, Jasper pulled away and turned from me. Lying on his back, I could see his chest rising and falling as he tried to catch his breath. Confused and a little rejected, I frowned. Did I do something wrong?
Jasper made no move to say anything, so I took it upon myself to speak first.
"Jasper, are you alright? I mean, I don't know. Do you think we are moving too fast? Do you not want to do that? We can take things really slow like we did before.." I stopped mid-sentence when I saw Jasper shaking his head.
"No, Bella. I don't think we're moving too fast, I mean, I love you so much, but I do respect the fact that we've only been together a few weeks, but there's no way in hell we're going to the next level any time soon. Not for a while" He said.
I found myself nodding, agreeing with him. "That's not what I intended anyway, I'm not ready. I'm so sorry if you thought that that was what I was trying to do because I wasn't. Oh god you probably think I'm some kind of sex crazed slu-" Jasper's eyes snapped to me with an intense glare, shutting me off.
"Don't you ever," he stated harshly. "And I mean never, think that I will ever think of you in that way, Bella. You are a beautiful and pure soul. I love you so much you have no idea. I would never think you were some kind of slut." He said, spitting out the word.
I felt stupid, he probably thought I had no faith in him.
Looking up at him, I began to apologise. "I'm so sorry Jasper. I mean, I can't see me being with anyone else except with you, but we've only been together a few weeks, and to be honest, that's not even on my mind at all" I finished, blushing. He smiled at me and touched my heated cheek.
"Oh, and I love you too." I said. Jasper's grin widened and he leant over and pecked me on the lips, a yawn followed not too long after.
"That's okay, Bella. I understand, let's just get some sleep." I nodded in agreement.
I watch Jasper as he walked over to the drawer I had in my room full of his stuff. Yes, Jasper had his own drawer, in my room. Before we were dating, he stayed over a lot. Although nowadays he probably won't be allowed to sleep over as often, the others would have to deal with it. Especially since they were all still occupying the loungeroom.
I grabbed my tank top and sleeping shorts and headed out to the hall and into the bathroom. I got changed and went to the toilet before washing my hands and heading back to my room. I walked in and Jasper was in bed under the covers, on the verge of falling asleep. I crawled in beside him and he instinctively pulled me into his side. I sighed and yawned. I reached behind him and began running my nails lightly up and down his bare back. He hummed lightly at the sensation and muttered a tired "I love you" to me. I whispered it back to him.
I spent a few minutes listening to Jasper's even breathing, signally he was asleep and watched his angelic face. The light shining through the window lit up half of his face and I was able to make out his sharp jawline. I gawked at how perfect he was.
I can't believe it's taken me this long to realise that such a perfect man was right in front of me.
I snuggled into his chest after awhile, it didn't take long before I succumbed into the darkness and fell into a dreamless sleep.
END OF CHAPTER EIGHTEEN