A/n Anon, thank you for your request and for your patience!! I hope you get a break soon <3 Please do what you can to take care of yourself!
Warnings: TW - ANXIETY // TW - ANXIETY ATTACK // TW - STRESS
Word count: 1308
Request: Jasper x Reader where the reader catches the attention of Jasper with the overwhelming emotions he feels from afar and it’s the reader in the middle of a silent anxiety attack in a remote hallway (she’s just walking back and forth with a hand over her chest, trying to breathe) and he comforts her without actually using his power. He kind of just listens? And tells her when to breathe in and out? I’ve been going through a very rough week and nothing is going the way I planned, so I wanted the reader to feel like she’s stressed from schoolwork, college decisions, and being a musician who always has to put in time to practice while also being sleep deprived af because that’s been me for the past year and a half
If Jasper had a blood pressure, it would be rising.
The forceful cacophony of hundreds of emotional climates converge upon and disorient one individual: himself.
After so many years of this existence, Jasper is relatively good at managing the excessive input. He knows how to identify the emotions of those important to him and let the others fade into the background — never completely gone, but not at the forefront, either.
But today, on this cloudy, nondescript Thursday morning, there is one emotional climate he cannot ignore.
It’s chaotic. It’s panicked. It’s frantic.
Jasper raises his hand and excuses himself from class — humans tend not to disagree with him, even if he doesn’t come up with a great excuse. I left a book in my locker. Well, he’ll have to return with a book after he’s located the person waging war on his senses.
Once free of the cramped classroom, Jasper allows himself a breath. The scent of barely-concealed human blood is tempting, but it is much more manageable due to experience and frequent hunting. There was a time when, had Jasper gone searching for a human, his body would have interpreted it as a hunt, and the human likely would not have survived the encounter. But now, Jasper feels confident in his footsteps, trusting in his ability to not commit murder, as Carlisle calls it. Besides, even if the call of the blood is tempting, Jasper has no desire to attend another of his victim’s funerals.
As Jasper turns a corner, the emotions intensify. The core emotion, the loudest, most pressing, is one he knows well — anxiety. Others — stress, exhaustion, indecision, hopelessness — swell and ebb, each fighting for dominance in this poor human host. As he enters another hallway, Jasper registers the sound of sneakers hitting the linoleum floor — the human is pacing while attempting to take deep breaths. The breaths are stilted though, jerky, and from what he knows about humans, they probably aren’t doing much to calm the human down.
A final turn and Jasper locates the source of the emotions — a human girl he had a science class with last year. She hasn’t noticed him yet and he takes the opportunity to assess the situation. An anxiety attack for sure.
Jasper clears his throat.
The girl’s wide, panicked eyes meet his and she sucks in a labored breath. “S-sorry, I—”
Jasper shrugs, doing his best to seem nonthreatening. He doesn’t want to add to the fear she’s already feeling. “Don’t worry about it. Are you okay?” Mentally, he chides himself. She’s obviously not. Hesitantly, he takes a few steps forward, shortening the distance between himself and the girl. She keeps a hand on her chest, probably trying to ground herself with the rise and fall.
“It’s—it’s nothing,” she mutters, it sounding half like a gasp. “I’ll be fine, I just need to calm down.”
Jasper nods evenly. He could use his ability to do the work for her, but he knows that would only be a temporary fix; she’d probably just have another episode the minute he and his power left. So, he elects to attempt a different strategy, one that might actually help long-term. Jasper strides forward, careful not to startle the human, and sits on the ground, resting his back against the faded blue lockers. “Tell me what’s wrong.”
Her paces falter and she stares at him, clearly trying to assess if the offer is genuine. Jasper tries for a smile but then quickly lets it fall off his face, worried showing his teeth will frighten her.
The human huffs and a feeling of desperation momentarily swells forward, then is overpowered by stress.
“Okay,” she shrugs, seeming to sag under the weight of her exhaustion. Her pacing resumes. “Everything is just too much. The semester’s almost over which means I have way too much schoolwork to even think about, everyone’s expecting me to make these huge college decisions that could affect the rest of my life — I mean, what if I choose wrong? How will I know if I’m choosing wrong or right? And then throughout all of this, I somehow have to find time to practice. I already don’t have enough time to get all my homework done, so how can I get to practicing? But somehow both have to be a priority!” She whimpers, the sound shaky and defeated. “So I get it all done, sometimes, but at the cost of my sleep. I can’t remember the last time I felt well-rested. So I stay up to get all these things done, but then I don’t have the energy to do these things well, but I need to be doing these things well to get into a good college so I don’t screw future-me over.”
The human’s pacing—which had sped up in accordance with her words—stops. Her shoulders sag and she sinks to the floor next to Jasper, leaning her head against the lockers, staring at the ceiling. “It’s just a lot,” she mutters, tears pricking at the edges of her eyes.
The frantic note to her emotions has faded, but the anxiety and stress are still there. Now though, the feeling of overwhelmed comes to the forefront, as well as a general sense of being lost.
“Breathe in and out,” Jasper advises.
She gives him a dubious look. “That doesn’t help.”
“Come on, do it with me,” he encourages, showing her an exaggeratedly long inhale followed by an equally lengthy exhale. He really shouldn’t be breathing in such close proximity to a human, but he finds himself wanting to help her. No one should have to deal with so much, especially not by themselves.
She acquiesces and follows his lead, taking deep breaths.
Her heart rate begins to slow.
They sit like that for much longer than the time needed to ‘get a book from his locker,’ but Jasper doesn’t mind. He’s happy to be here helping this human feel better again. The piercing, destructive emotions are calming, slowly but surely giving way to relief and a tentative measure of peace.
The human closes her eyes. “Thank you for listening.”
Jasper furrows his eyebrows, confused by her gratitude. She did all the hard work, he only sat there. “Of course. And you know, you don’t have to have everything planned out or do it by yourself. It’s all going to work out.” An old phrase comes to mind, something his mother used to tell him back in his human life. He smiles fondly at the memory. “But you can’t pour from an empty cup. Before you can contribute to school or practice or make big decisions, you have to take care of yourself.”
She smiles softly, nodding, and a note of amusement comes forth in her feelings. “Yeah, that makes sense.”
Jasper waits a few more minutes until her anxiety is gone. Then, he turns to look at her. “Are you ready to go back to class?”
There’s a momentary spike in her stress, but a deep breath calms it once again. She nods. “Yeah, thank you again for sitting with me.”
Jasper smiles. “My pleasure. Can I walk you?” He finds himself not quite ready to leave her. He wants to make sure she’s completely okay and settled before going back to his own class.
The human accepts his offer with a smile. The two walk slowly, talking about things they’re excited for in the upcoming days. By the time they arrive at her classroom door, the human feels rejuvenated, hopeful. She pauses before entering the classroom, waving goodbye. “See you at lunch?”
Jasper nods, promising to himself that he will check on her then. “See you at lunch.”
And, as Jasper heads back to his own class, he makes himself another promise. As long as he’s around, the human girl will always have a friend.
66 notes · View notes
Rewriting Jasper's Backstory:
There's so many interesting things Smeyer could've done for Jasper's past that would be, for one, way more interesting, and two: way less racist. I currently live and grew up in Texas with Houston being the closest big city to me. So as someone who lives in the general area Jasper is supposed to be from, here's just a few things I can think of that would make sense:
Jasper could've been a champion bull rider that everyone thought died from said bull riding, but was actually changed by Carlisle because he was at the hospital they brought him to. I just think that'd be neat. And all his emotion control stuff can come from him, like "being one with the bull" or whatever. This would probably make him a much newer vampire, and could explain his difficulty with Vampire Vegetarianism.
If he Absolutely has to be from the Civil War era, he couldve been part of the underground railroad in some sort of way. Be it helping people travel safely or by having a safe house. (He could also be a bat guano miner, but seeing as how that was only a thing because it was used in ammo, it could be a bit problematic. And probably not that interesting)
He couldve been a cowboy, theres a whole entire movie genre made of those. Plenty of material there. Alone in the mountains with just a herd of cattle and his horse... perfect candidate to be changed by Maria and still have all that newborn army mess.
He couldve been, I dunno, NOT a Confederate Soldier?
He couldve been part of the fight for Texas's independence. He couldve "died" at the Alamo, he couldve fought at Washington on the Brazos (the winning battle). Theres plenty of material there.
Anyone else is welcome to add or expand upon any of these ideas. I've been seeing a lot of Jasper discourse lately, and I do agree he is pretty uninteresting in canon. And also, yknow, an ex Confederate. Which is, how you say.... not good?
Anyway as a person who's favorite academic-type subject in school was Texas History, I'd love to hear more ideas!
22 notes · View notes