To Love Thy Sun
“Do you love the sun as I do, Peter?” Charlotte asked, whilst running her hand over a small shrubbery bush that was bathed in sunlight. I didn’t answer her. Instead, I remained looking forward through the trees. How could she love something that confined us to uninhabited areas as these?
When she received no answer, she turned to face me. “Do not be so pessimistic, Peter.” My expression must have told her exactly what was on my mind.
“Do explain to me, Charlotte, why is it you love the thing that restricts us to places such as these?” I said whilst gesturing with my hand at our surroundings.
She frowned. “Do you not see the beauty that surrounds us? Everything seems so alive when the sun shines down upon it. It’s truly beautiful. I would rather spend the rest of eternity bathed in sunlight than live in perpetual darkness.”
I sighed as my mouth mashed into a thin line. How did I tell her that nothing was beautiful in comparison to her?
She went to say something more when a small gust of wind blew from the north, my whole body tensed and I noticed Charlotte mirroring my movement. There was a vampire just a little to the north of us; Charlotte must have sensed it too as its scent travelled in the breeze.
She turned towards me with a smile growing on her face; I didn’t have time to question her as she sprinted through the trees ahead.
“Charlotte,” I growled before taking off after her, we didn’t know who was ahead of us and I hated not having her in my sights. Even though I had lived away from the fight for almost two decades, my past still tainted how I interpreted encounters with others of our kind.
I caught up with her only a few metres into the forest and went to stand in front of her waiting for the newcomer to walk into the small clearing.
“Its Jasper,” Charlotte said quietly, I inhaled then shook my head swiftly. “I'm not familiar with this scent; it could be another vampire whose scent is similar to that of Jasper’s.”
“Is that possible?” she questioned, still standing behind me. “I don’t know, I’ve never encountered two vampires with similar scents before, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t possible.”
I felt her tense behind me as the scent became stronger, it wasn’t long before we could hear them approaching.
Then all of a sudden, the trees parted and a small female no taller than my Charlotte skipped out and came to a stop when she saw us, a large smile formed on her face.
“Peter, Charlotte,” she exclaimed whilst skipping towards us. I tensed and took hold of Charlotte’s arm telling her silently to run. But the small female stopped suddenly in front of us and her expression was blank as her strange golden eyes glazed over.
I quickly assessed her knowing instantly that she didn’t pose as a threat to either of us, she certainly didn’t look like she was about to attack us.
“Alice?!” a voice called out from the direction that she had just appeared from. Suddenly he came bounding out from the forest into the clearing and let out a sigh of relief as he spotted the small female standing in front of us.
“Jasper!” I exclaimed taking a step towards him, but it was Charlotte who reached him first and embraced him tightly.
“Oh, Jasper, you do not know how good it is to see you again.” He chuckled slightly at her exuberance and pulled away from her and I too embraced him quickly.
“It’s been too long my friends,” he said, clasping his hands on both of our shoulders.
“It’s been almost a decade since we saw you last,” Charlotte half scolded him. “Where have you been all this time?”
He ducked his head slightly with soft smile on his face. “I'm sorry, ma’am, I have been busy.”
“Just busy? Really, Jasper, you could elaborate a little,” the small female said, finally coming out of her daze to stand next to Jasper.
Jasper chuckled and wrapped his arm around the small females shoulder, he looked truly happy.
“Peter, Charlotte, I would like you to meet my wife, Miss Alice Cullen,” he said, his voice filled with pride.
Charlotte clapped her hands vigorously and pulled Alice into a tight embrace which she returned eagerly. I smiled to myself as they began talking at vampire speed about weddings and dresses and other such things that failed to hold my attention.
I turned back to Jasper, who was watching the two females getting to know each other.
“It seems as if our wives enjoy each others company, I did worry whether Charlotte would take to Alice. It seems that worry was for nothing.”
I smiled to myself knowing that even if Jasper had turned up exclaiming he was married to a horse, Charlotte would still be happy. Because Jasper was happy, and that was all that mattered.
“I'm glad you’ve found her, I can see that she makes you happy,” I said, noticing the soft smile that seemed to accompany him.
“Yes, Alice has made all the difference,” Jasper agreed. “I’ve finally found a climate that I enjoy.”
“You’re different, in more ways than one I must say,” I admitted.
“The eyes?” Jasper questioned sounding amused.
I nodded. “Your scent, too.”
“That must be the animal blood,” he mused.
“You’ve lost me, brother,” I told him, my brow furrowed in confusion.
“Let me start from the beginning. When I met Alice she told me of a family, a coven if you like, who were different to others of our kind, in that they only drank blood of animals. I didn’t believe that our thirst could be quelled by that type blood, but I must say my friend, that I was wrong.
“It’s not the same, of course, but it controls the thirst. The golden eyes are just one of the effects from this type of diet.” Once he’d finished I was silent for a moment as I took in all that he had told me.
No wonder he's so happy, I thought to myself, not only had he found a mate but he had also found a way of satiating his thirst without harming humans. I felt strangely relieved for him.
“You should try it, it might just surprise you,” he suggested, I was about to reply when Charlotte’s voice interrupted me.
“Alice? Alice?” she called out whilst waving her hand in front of the non responsive Alice, I turned to Jasper concerned only to find him chuckling softly.
“Leave her, Charlotte, she’ll come back in her own time.” Charlotte’s brow creased in confusion but she didn’t press the matter and did as Jasper said and left her.
After no less than a minute she jolted back into consciousness and smiled widely at Jasper.
“What did you see, my love?” he asked, whilst both Charlotte and I watched them completely baffled.
“Charlotte will agree to try animal blood,” she chirped excitedly.
“How…” Charlotte began, but then stopped again not knowing what to say, she looked between Jasper and Alice as her brow creased even further.
“Alice has an ability, she can see the future – physic ability if you prefer. She sees things that could happen, but her visions are subjective. She only sees the course that people are on while they are on it. Obviously, Charlotte, you must have decided that you will try animal blood, if you change your mind, her vision will change.”
“Amazing,” I breathed.
“Yes, she is,” Jasper agreed whilst staring at his mate lovingly.
“Shall we hunt?” Alice asked enthusiastically, I chuckled to myself as I watched her bounce around on the spot practically buzzing with excitement.
“Lets,” Charlotte agreed, she too sounded enthusiastic. I did not need to give my own answer; instead I went to stand next to Charlotte taking her hand, for wherever she went I went and I knew it was exactly the same for Jasper.
Alice and Jasper led the way; we ran deeper into the forest where it was densely populated with trees. When they finally stopped Jasper stood in front of us and signalled for us to be quiet.
“Close your eyes, both of you. Now I want you to listen, there's a heartbeat,” Jasper told us; I’d closed my eyes when he had told me and sure enough I could hear the heartbeat.
“To the northwest?” I asked, still unsure.
“Yes, can you smell it yet?” he asked. I heard Charlotte inhale to my left.
She groaned in disgust. “What is that?”
He chuckled softly. “It’s a bear. It’s not in season, so it will be rather irritable.”
“Mmm, irritable grizzly, Emmett will be jealous.” Alice giggled quietly to herself. I didn’t question who Emmett was; I just assumed he was from their coven.
“Wait here,” Jasper exclaimed, before taking off in the direction of the bear. We waited for no more than a minute before we heard him calling for us to follow.
When he reached him, he was standing across from the bear which now was growling angrily as Jasper taunted it. A wicked grin formed on Jasper’s face as he pounced at the bear, knocking it to the forest floor. The bear roared angrily and struggled against Jasper’s grip, but I could tell it wasn’t much of a fight as Jasper bit into the space next to its throat. He stood up a minute later with a smug grin on his face. I surveyed him quickly, surprised to see that he looked exactly as he had a few minutes ago.
“Ladies first,” he said whilst gesturing towards the bear.
“My Jasper is forever chivalrous,” Alice said as she rested her hand on his cheek before moving towards the bear.
“Charlotte?” she asked with an inviting tone.
I looked at my mate apprehensively as she smiled and took a step towards Alice, who was now feeding. Charlotte knelt down beside her and without faltering she sank her teeth into the skin around its neck.
I watched as she drank from the bear for over a minute, I could smell the blood in the wind and it smelt completely wrong. Finally she stood up and wiped her mouth clean with the back of her hand, she looked towards me expectantly but I did not move.
“Don’t be scared Peter, it’s not all that bad,” she said in a surprised tone.
I stepped towards her suddenly feeling enthusiasm buzz through my body, Charlotte clapped her hands excitedly as I approached; this was too much.
“Jasper,” I growled at him jokingly.
He chuckled exuberantly. “Sorry, I couldn’t resist.”
As he finished speaking my enthusiasm fizzled away and Charlotte stopped clapping, she smiled at me encouragingly and I knelt down next to the bear.
I grimaced as I sank my teeth into the soft skin of its neck, the blood tasted as wrong as it smelt but it had similarities to human blood. I could finally understand how Jasper and his new family were able to live on the blood of an animal instead of that of a human.
When I moved away from the drained carcass, I turned to find all three watching me intently.
“So?” Alice asked excitedly. “What do you think?”
“Its different, I’ll give you that. But I'm afraid I don’t think I will be converting to animal blood any time soon.” Charlotte nodded in agreement.
“It wasn’t bad, but I have to agree with Peter, I don’t think I will be converting. But at least we have a substitute if a situation arises where we cannot hunt.”
“Its ok my friends, today was not a trip to convert you to our way of life, it was just an introduction of what I hope will be a brilliant friendship,” Jasper said.
“I am confident that Miss Alice and I are going to be excellent friends,” Charlotte told them. Alice nodded in agreement.
“I wish we didn’t have to leave,” Alice remarked after Jasper announced that they had to be leaving soon.
“I wish you could stay longer,” Charlotte replied whilst they embraced each other tightly.
I turned to Jasper and embraced him quickly.
“Thank you, sister.” I heard Charlotte whisper to Alice. “You have made him the happiest I’ve ever seen him.” Both Jasper and I pretended not to be listening, even though they knew that we would have heard.
“Don’t you dare leave it another decade before we see you both,” Charlotte scolded Jasper as she turned to embrace him.
“I wouldn’t dream of it,” Jasper replied seriously. “You should come and meet the rest of our family one day.”
“We will do, brother,” I assured him as I said my goodbyes to Alice.
Charlotte came and stood next to me as both Jasper and Alice waved before taking off into the trees. She took my hand as the sadness set in, now that Jasper had gone we were no longer affected by his ability and the calmness that emanated from him.
Charlotte’s tearless sob jolted me and I turned to face her. “Don’t be unhappy, my love,” I said as I brought my hand up to her cheek.
“I'm goin’ to miss them terribly,” she replied in a small voice.
“I'll miss them, too. But I promise, Charlotte, we will see them again soon.” I held onto her tightly, brushing my fingers soothingly through her white blond curls.
She pulled away from me slowly and took my hand again; we began walking back through the forest at human pace enjoying the peace and quiet of our surroundings.
All of a sudden the sun shone directly onto us from through the trees ahead, Charlotte paused and closed her eyes with a faint smile on her lips.
It was then that I realised what she meant about the sun as I looked at her taking in the tiny shards that reflected from her pale skin like diamonds.
She was truly breathtaking when the sun shone down on her making her sparkle like the prettiest jewel, it was then that I realised I too, loved the sun.