"If I'm smart then I'll run away
But I'm not so I guess I'll stay
Haven't you heard
I fell in love with a beautiful stranger"
-Madonna, Beautiful Stranger
Chapter One: Gorgeous stranger
He was gorgeous. He had red eyes, golden, windblown hair, and scars that marred his face. He was very tall, built well, and his eyes showed torture beyond belief. He was staring at me, tenderness soothing the pain in his eyes. The corners of his full lips were slightly turned upward, though I could barely tell that he was trying to smile. I wanted him to. It hurt me to see him so hurt, though I had never met him in my life. He reached his hand out timidly, as if he were afraid to touch me. I held my hand out, encouraging him. He flinched slightly and grew tense when I put my hand out, but he still took it. His hand, rough and bumpy, was around two sizes bigger than mine, but our hands fit perfectly.
"So, where to, Miss Alice?" he asked in a voice like honey. There was a small drawl to it that made me suspect he was from the south.
My eyes opened, which surprised me because I thought they already were. He was gone, my blonde angel. Sadness stabbed my heart. Where did he go? I needed him. I quickly shook off my saddening thoughts and looked around me. I was in the middle of nowhere. I sat up before my throat started to burn.
Burn was an understatement. I felt like everything sharp in the entire world was stabbing my throat as well as my neck being set on fire. Only one thought coursed through my body: put the fire out; stop the pain. I was suddenly on my feet, letting them lead me towards an extinguisher of this pain.
A lost boy wheeled around to face me.
"Have you seen my mommy?" he asked before fear filled his eyes. "What's wrong with your eyes?" I smirked evilly and grabbed the boy by the shoulders. His skin was very warm and I could feel his bones crunch beneath my fingers. The boy cried out in protest as I bit into his scrumptious neck. It tasted absolutely amazing. The boy's heart was fighting to pump the sweet blood. It stuttered before going completely still. I drank the last few gulps before tossing the carcass aside. I needed more.
I ran a few more yards before I reached a young couple. They saw me and looked at the ground guiltily.
"Please don't tell our parents," the girl said. I ran at her and they both screamed. The boy tried to throw himself in front of the girl, but I was too fast. My lips were at her throat in a second and the boy started running way. He looked like he was walking away from me compared to my speed. The girl was dead within seconds and I threw her body at the boy. He collapsed under the impact.
"Mary!" he screamed before I grabbed him and drained him of his blood. I dropped him, feeling satisfied. I looked around and saw that I was in a small park. Even though it was later at night, I could see every individual blade of grass.
"Hello, I'm Alice and this is Jasper," I chirped, motioning from me to my angel. Jasper nodded stiffly. "We've come to join your family."
"Oh," a blonde male said. He was shorter than Jasper, and looked about the same age, if not older, than us. He seemed unsure, and his eyes stayed on Jasper. Jasper looked towards me, begging me with his eyes to help him. I sighed. He wasn't comfortable.
"May we come in?" I asked and the man nodded.
"Of course," he said and we all walked into his house. Jasper clenched my hand desperately, for he wasn't very good at trusting vampires.
"So, as I've said before, we have some here to join your family," I said. "We've already started working on the vegetarian diet."
"How do you-" the man, Carlisle, started.
"I have visions of the future," I said. "I saw Jasper and me traveling to find your family and join it."
‘Visions of the future'? Was that what I just had? Surely it couldn't be anything else! And what was this vegetarian diet I had spoken of? As if it had heard my questions, a vision with all the answers came to me.
Jasper and I were running through a forest. We were following something that didn't smell a sixteenth as good as humans did. We ran straight up to the bear and pounced on it to drink its blood.
Once I was brought back to the present, I ran as fast and far away as I could from the human civilization. I had to not ever drink their blood again no matter how much I wanted to. The vision had told me that Jasper wasn't very good at sticking to the diet. I had to be his role model and help him make the transition. Accidentally eating a passerby wouldn't exactly give Jasper the right idea. I was a few miles out of the town now and I slowed to a stop. It surprised me that I wasn't tired yet, though I had no idea as to why I was so shocked. I have always been a . . . a . . . what was I?
I wracked my brain and tried to remember. I knew what I had hunted were humans so that made me a . . . vampire? That rung a bell. I remembered all the tales I was told of them, but I have no memory of being told them. How could I know so much when I was just born a few hours ago?
Vampires were evil creatures with fangs and capes. I looked down and saw that I was wearing a tattered nightgown-looking item of clothing. I opened my mouth and felt my teeth. Nope, no fangs whatsoever. And I was pretty sure I wasn't evil, and neither was Jasper. Was Jasper a vampire? He certainly looked human . . . except for his paleness and deep red eyes. What did I even look like?
I felt my face. It was very smooth with regular features that were found on anyone. My hands found my hair. It was very, very short. I thought girls were supposed to have long hair. Was I a girl? I felt my body and nodded. I had all the right body parts to be a girl. The question was why was my hair so short? I guess I was just born that way. Was I even born? Birth was coming out of your mother. As far as I knew, I wasn't born exactly. Maybe more like made. So, that meant I was not human, but I couldn't be a vampire. I didn't qualify as one.
I was standing in a grocery store. Just standing and staring intently at the door. I was focusing so hard that I hardly put on a human façade. There were sunglasses over my eyes. Soon enough, a familiar handsome man entered the store and I walked up to him so we could travel to find the Cullens.
I was going to meet Jasper? The visions had given me so much information; it was hard to keep track of it. I was a vampire, but I was different than the stories I had been ‘told'. I was going to fall in love with Jasper and we would one day get happily married. He was my soul mate. I had to meet him. My vision had also told me how I was supposed to stick to the diet and hide my red eyes. One day, I'd have gold eyes like I had seen on Carlisle.
Where was a bear? I needed to start my diet now.
Twenty-eight years later . . .
I smoothed out my blouse as I sat down on the park bench in the park Jasper was supposed to come through. My foot tapped in an elaborate rhythm as I observed the scenery around me. Not many people were out and about seeing as it was supposed to rain soon. I could only come out during cloudy days or night because I would sparkle. It was strange, but I did like it when my skin glittered. When sunlight had first fallen onto my skin, I was terrified because vampires were supposed to die if sunlight ever hit them. All I did was sparkle, something harmless, though it could attract attention to me.
Twenty-eight years, three days, five hours, and fourteen seconds. That's how long I had been waiting for Jasper to arrive and I would wait twenty more years for him. At times I'd get a little impatient--who doesn't?--but I would always remind myself of why I was waiting and my patience would rise.
Jasper had changed his mind. He wasn't going through the park anymore--it would cause him to attack someone; something he refused to do. Instead, he'd go around the city and head off towards a small diner.
"Ugh," I grunted in frustration. Why wouldn't that boy just make up his mind for once and stop changing his mind?! I stood up from the bench reluctantly. Should I even go to this diner in Philadelphia? I mean, he's just going to change his mind and make me drag my feet to a different city. Something in the back of my mind told me that it was his path was not a lie, and if I didn't go there I'd miss him and I'd be sorry. I walked out of the park and left the city in a hurry, running at vampire speed when there was no population around.
I swirled back and forth on the bar stool as I waited for the waitress to bring me some scrambled eggs and toast. It was the third cloudy day here in Pennsylvania and Jasper's path was getting clearer and clearer. I hoped that he'd come this time. Did he know that I was waiting for him? Probably not, unless he was some sort of psychic, too and was just teasing me by changing his course all the time. Surely that wasn't plausible. I drummed my fingers and hummed one of the songs I had heard when I passed by a dance hall.
"Here ya go, Miss Alice," the waitress smiled and handed me a heaping plate of food that nearly made me throw up. Vampires weren't supposed to get sick, either. "Now, honey, are ya sure this boy's really worth it? You've been waitin' for three days and he hasn't come."
"He's definitely worth it," I said. "May I please have some coffee?"
"Be right back with it, doll," she said and hurried back into the kitchen. I bit my lip. Surely he would come today, why would he not? There was a knot in my stomach as I thought about whether he would like me or not. Normally, I was very confident in myself, but I knew that Jasper would come today and I was super panicked. My hands ran nervously down my dress and I tried to look at something reflective to see if my hair was all right. Nothing.
Alice, it's just Jasper, I told myself. You two will one day be happily married so quit your worrying. I took a deep breath and smiled when my waitress, Ester, came back with my coffee.
"Here ya go," she said simply and walked off to greet some new customers. Thunder cracked and rain started to pour down. I cheered inside my head and stared intently at the door. I took a quick peek to assure myself that he was still coming . . . yep. His path was clearer than any other vision I had ever had. This was it. He was coming. The rain poured down more violently and people rushed into the restaurant to take cover. After most of the commotion, the door knob turned. After twenty-eight years, six days, three hours, nine minutes, and twenty seconds of searching, I had found him.