TwiFic Doctorward Contest

Title: The Fallout Plan

Prompt #: 3

Pairing: Bella/Edward

Genre: Humor/Drama

Rating: M

Summary: Bella Swan's my best friend, and she's always been a go-getter, so it shouldn't surprise me when she tells me of her plan to be a single mom, yet it does. I go along with it despite knowing she's not ready to have a baby. And everything is perfect until Edward Cullen—a hot doctor with a panty-melting smile—walks into her life. And me? Well, I'm Jacob Black, and this is her story.

Word count: 11, 818

Disclaimer: The author does not own any publicly recognizable entities herein. No copyright infringement is intended.

Friday nights at Bella's place are for unwinding.

Heck, sometimes hanging out for beer and pizza is simply a breather before we submerge ourselves into client files for whatever trial we might be preparing for.

So, it's for this reason that I'm astonished Bella would pick this night to tell me about her plans.

"You're kidding, right?" I asked her before tipping back my beer for a quick sip.

Bella shook her head as she finished eating a bite of pizza. "I'm totally serious, Jakey."

Ugh. Again, with that nickname… She only uses it when she wants something.

Exhaling, I turned to face her. "Okay, give me at least three reasons why having a baby is something that you need to do right now."

"I don't need to give you any reasons why I want to do it, Jacob," Bella scoffed, rolling her eyes.

I pointed to her and chuckled mirthlessly. "And that's why you shouldn't do it—immature brat."

"I am not immature," she cried like the twelve-year-old girl she was embodying.

I put my beer down and gave her a disapproving look. "Bella, you're a step away from saying: 'Because I want to,' so don't give me that shit."

"Fine," she scoffed again. "I want to have this baby because my fertility clock is ticking, and I might not be able to do it later."

"Bells, you're thirty-years-old; your fertility clock is nowhere near ticking. You have, like, at least five years until you have to worry about that."

Bella slumped her shoulders. "I know that, but still; it's something that I feel I need, you know? Besides, I know I'm a responsible adult. I'm a business attorney, for crying out loud."

"That's my point exactly, Bella. You're also a Junior Partner, so when are you going to have time to spend it with a baby when you'll be busy with your heavy work load?"

"I'll talk to my dad," she said, waving her hand dismissively. "I'm sure I can convince him to cut me back some hours."

Oh, she pulled the "Daddy" card.

Of course, it's only logical since she's the daughter of one of the owners of the firm where we work at. I could do the same, though, since my father is the other Senior Equity Partner of Swan & Black.

So, yeah, technically, she's financially capable of raising a child since money has never been a problem for either of us, but what I worry about is this possible-baby's stability.

As her best friend, I should worry about these things, right?

Sighing for what feels like the millionth time, I asked, "And how about if you have to go to trial? You know we have to pull all-nighters sometimes."

"That's the part where you come in," she informed me.

I raised my hands, telling her, "Oh, I am so not babysitting for you."

"It's not considered babysitting if you're the baby's father," Bella said casually before taking another bite of her pizza.

And that's how Bella dropped the bomb on me.

She wanted me to be the father of her baby… I think.

"Did you actually just ask me to be the father of your child, Bells?" I said in a high-pitched voice.

Bella simply nodded, chewing her pizza slowly.

"You do know that I'm gay, right? I mean, I've only been out of the closet for, oh, the past twelve years!"

She swallowed her pizza down and took a drink of her Corona. "Yeah, I know."

"So, how…" I began, because I know how, I just… "I don't understand."

Bella turned, looking directly into my eyes before grabbing my hand and holding it between hers. "I know that what I'm asking is crazy, but I've been thinking about it a lot, and I've decided that if I'm going to do this 'single mother' thing, it should be with you. I love you, and I know that despite your sexual orientation, you'll be a good father. So, please, say yes."

I gaze down, feeling a bit emotional, because despite Bella's nonchalance about the whole issue, I know she has truly thought this through, and while I'm honored that she's even considered me for this, something just doesn't feel right.

Grasping one of her hands a bit tighter, I shook my head. "Tell me why you're really doing this, Bella."

She sighed, shrugging her shoulders once. "I'm so tired of being lonely, Jake, and Alice is already on her way to having her third child, and I haven't even—"

I cut her off, shaking my head. "This is not a competition with your sister, Bella. And I know that what Jasper did to you hurts, but you shouldn't let that guide your decision—not when it concerns something like this."

God, I hate the fact that what that asshole did to her five years ago still haunts her. I wish that I could do something to help her forget, but it's impossible. He's part of Bella's family now since he married her sister, which makes it even worse because they're always together at family functions.

Yeah, that was some fucked-up shit when it happened—probably worse than some daytime, soap-opera drama.

It all happened the summer after Alice moved in with Bella and her dad Charlie. Renee—Bella and Alice's mother—left Charlie when Bella was just seven-years-old, and she was pregnant with Alice. Nobody knew about the latter, so when Alice unexpectedly showed up at Charlie's house one Christmas morning, telling them about how she'd run away from Renee's home because her mother was an alcoholic, Charlie had no other option than to take her in.

No one ever doubted if Alice was Charlie's daughter since she's his spitting image, but I still didn't trust her, and rightfully so, seeing as she seduced Jasper despite knowing that he was engaged to Bella. I know that she's not the only one to blame, but Alice is a conniving bitch, and she pulled Jasper's strings every which way she wanted. The most painful thing was that she did it only to spite Bella when it wasn't even her fault that Charlie was never in Alice's life.

So, now, I realize that she's come to this decision because she doesn't want to risk getting hurt again. While I was aware that she hasn't been in a fully committed relationship, I expected her to eventually reach that point in her life where she'd be willing to at least try.

As if reading my mind, Bella said, "I don't think I'll ever be ready to expose myself to being hurt again, Jake. I know it's been years since it happened, but the pain hasn't lessened, and to be wounded like that again? I don't think I could handle it."

Although I could sympathize with her reasoning, I would have liked for her to give love another chance, but I also knew that there was no deterring her now. She'd made up her mind, and once she does that, it's almost impossible to convince her of doing otherwise. Plus, if she was going to do this with someone, I'd much rather it were with me than with some random sperm donor.

I really didn't have much option, to be honest.

Removing my hand from between hers, I rubbed the back of my neck with it.

"Okay, so suppose we did this," I told her. "How would it work?"

She frowned. "What do you mean?"

"Well, I'm pretty sure that you've simply considered that I'd help you conceive the baby, but if I do agree, I want you to know that I want to be involved as much as possible. I'm not just going to give you my sperm and not care what happens afterward."

"Oh," Bella said, surprised. "I really hadn't considered that."

"I figured," I sighed, "but these are things that we should discuss."

Bella nodded. "Alright, so how would we handle living arrangements?"

"Considering that we live across the hall from each other, I'll probably be here as often as I already am, and when I'm not, you can just give me a call if you need me over."

"I thought you were thinking about moving in with me," Bella admitted, chuckling.

"No!" I cried. "This isn't The Object of My Affection where the pregnant, single chick and the gay best friend lived together. Besides, she fell in love with him because they lived together, so double-no."

Smirking, Bella playfully punched my arm. "Yeah, I'm not that desperate! Besides, who says that it couldn't be you that fell in love with me, huh?"

I snickered. "I do! I mean, how would we work out as a couple if you can never clean your house?"

"Shut up, Mr. OCD!" she taunted. "I clean my house as much as I can."

"Sure, sure," I said, grinning briefly before sobering a bit. "In all seriousness, though, I really do think we need to discuss this further—to take many things into consideration before we jump in and do this."

"Okay," Bella agreed. "So, are you saying you'll do it?"

I nodded. "Yeah, but we're going to set up a prenatal agreement and have Jessica notarize it at the office. I want to make sure all my bases are covered in case that I get married in the future."

"God, I love it when you go all 'lawyer' on me, Jake. It's so hot," Bella teased, fanning herself as she laughed.

I couldn't help laughing as well, enjoying the usual banter between us. In a way, I knew that she was making light of the situation, but why should we make it graver?

We both knew that we'd do everything possible to make sure things worked out in the future.

That's what being best friends ensured.


A whole month passed after our conversation before we were finally receiving our medical test results from Bella's OB/GYN.

And let me tell you, this Rosalie McCarty chick was something fierce.

Besides having the looks and poise of someone that could rock the runway, she exuded confidence and authority, yet gave you a heartwarming vibe, which made you feel at ease. Dr. McCarty seemed to be in her early thirties and was one of the best reproductive endocrinologists in Seattle according to Jessica—Bella's secretary/legal assistant/confidant.

I believed this fact to be true given that Jessica is very efficient, and if Bella gave her the task to find a good specialist, she would do everything in her power to do so.

Dr. McCarty smiled over to Bella, and began speaking, bringing me out of my reverie.

"Well, according to your test results, both of you are healthy and in perfect conditions to conceive a child, so let's talk about our options, shall we?"

Dr. McCarty looked over at me, clasping her hands together. "Miss Swan has told me that you're both interested in artificial insemination, is that correct?"

I nodded. "It is."

"And is there a specific reason why you want to go that route and not the traditional one?"

I'm allergic to vaginas! I sarcastically thought while trying to keep a straight face as I replied.

"As you probably already know from my sexual history, "I said pointedly, "I have only been with men because I'm gay."

Dr. McCarty nodded. "Okay, I just wanted to make sure," she said. "And please allow me to explain my question."


"While it is often common that males who are intimate with other males are homosexual, it isn't always the case. Some may have been going through an experimental phase while others are bisexuals that have yet to have intercourse with women. So, without asking you straightforwardly, I wouldn't really know why you would opt for this method."

"That's alright."

"Let me just tell you, though," she said in a more casual tone, "I would have never figured you were gay from just looking at you."

Bella snickered. "That's what many girls have told him."

It was true. I'd heard that same line over and over throughout my college years, but let me make something clear: being gay doesn't equal being flamboyant or dressing like someone from the cast of Queer Eye for the Straight Guy.

Gay stereotypes can go die in a fire for all I care. Just saying.

Dr. McCarty looked down at her files and grinned minutely before looking up at Bella. "Miss Swan, when we scheduled your appointment for today, I took your ovulation cycle into consideration in case that your test results were positive as I suspected. So, in view of the fact that you're ovulating and that we can go forth with the insemination, you can do so today if you wish."

Bella looked over at me, grinning brightly as she asked, "What do you say, Jakey? Do you want to do it now?"

"Let's do it," I agreed, smirking at Bella.

Dr. McCarthy's face lit up like a kid's on Christmas morning. "Alrighty then; let's do this."

Everything after that was a blur. Both Bella and I were escorted to separate rooms—her to get prepped for the procedure while I…

Well, while I rubbed one out.

Yeah, there's no other way to say it.

One of the medical assistants led me to a sperm collection room that had a computer, complete with its speakers, on a small desk next to a mirror and sink. On one wall, there was a large, framed picture of Jennifer Lopez from one of her many sexy photo-shoots, and right below it, there was a specimen pass-through cabinet where I'd place my spunk in a cup.

Having used one before when I had to give a sample for my semen analysis, I went directly to the computer and turned it on as I took a seat on the chair in front of the desk. Once the computer had fully started up, I opened my account page on Corbin Fisher's website and loaded one of my favorite videos.

Oh, yeah, time for some Sean and Travis.

Standing quickly from the chair before I began playing the video, I walked over to the sink and grabbed one of the individual-sized lubricants from a jar that was there. I was back in my seat in seconds, pressing play as I unbuckled my pants.

And then, I choked the chicken until I saw stars.

What? Did you actually think I was going to depict my actions as I masturbated?

You know you don't wanna hear about that.

Just be aware that I got the job done, okay? Okay.

After placing the cup with my little swimmers in the specimen pass-through cabinet, I looked up at Queen , and admired her beauty.

Yes, she's a queen—The Queen.

"Queen Bey… Whatever," I scoffed before exiting the room and making my way back to the waiting area.

After about fifteen minutes, the same medical assistant that escorted me to the sperm collection room called my name.

I walked up to the door where she stood and asked her if there was a problem.

"Oh, no, not at all, Mr. Black," she appeased. "Dr. McCarty just wanted to let you know that she's done with the insemination and that Miss Swan still needs to wait for at least twenty more minutes for the procedure to conclude, so if you want to head over to her room, you're more than welcome to."

"I'd love that." I nodded. "Thank you."

As the medical assistant led me through some hallways, I asked her name.

"Carmen D'Eleazar, Sir," she told me.

"Please call me Jake, Carmen." I chuckled, shaking my head. "'Sir' makes me feel too old."

Carmen chuckled as well. "Okay, I promise I won't call you that again."

Once we reached Bella's gynecological examination room, Carmen knocked the door once before opening it rapidly, ushering me inside.

"Look who's here," she said to Bella, who was seated on one of those examination chairs with the stirrups, except this one was very modern. Its position was tilted, so Bella was literally spread-eagle with her feet in the air, facing the other side of the room.

Bella looked over to me, smiling. "Hey, Jakey."

"Hey, Bells," I said, walking over to her. "How are you feeling?"

"Normal, I guess." She shrugged, ruffling the paper gown she was wearing. "I mean, I don't feel your little swimmers working their way up my uterus, if that's what you're wondering."

Carmen laughed behind us as she organized some paperwork, causing Bella and I to do the same.

"I wasn't wondering that at all—just to be clear—yet I was curious about whether the procedure hurt or not."

Bella shook her head. "Not really, just kinda like it does when I get a Pap smear test."

"Okay, that's good," I said, taking hold of one of her hands. "After this, we can go home and eat all the pizza you want."

"And beer!" she exclaimed. "I can't have beer after today, and Dr. McCarty also said that I needed to stop smoking ASAP."

I raised my brow. "I thought you already quit when we were getting tested for this stuff."

Bella smiled ruefully. "I couldn't quit cold turkey, so I've been doing it little by little, but it's hard."

Laughing, we both exclaimed at the same time, "That's what she said!"

Having finished her task, Carmen walked over to us. "You're going to be great parents," she told us. "I can see it in the way that you love each other. You may be friends, but if it's possible, you're also soul mates."

"You really think so?" Bella asked, teary-eyed.

Carmen nodded. "Yes, and that's why I believe that your baby will be lucky if you both look after it as you look after each other."

I surely hoped she was right.


The following week, when I went looking for Bella at her office, she wasn't there. Jessica told me that Bella had taken the afternoon off and had gone home, so instead of calling Bella to ask her what was up, I headed there. Since it was early, and there wasn't much traffic, I made it quickly to our building and then Bella's condo. Once at her door, I used my key to enter and made my way inside.

As I walked to her living room, I noticed that Bella was sitting on her couch. She was wearing the same dress she had earlier, except she'd taken off her shoes, pulled up her hair in a messy bun, and wore her rectangular Ray Ban glasses. Her feet were up on the coffee table in front of her as she watched TV, nursing a quart of Haagen-Dazs ice cream on her lap.

"Hey, honey-bunches-of-oats," I said, leaning down to place a kiss on her cheek. "What's going on? You feeling okay?"

Bella scowled, shrugging her shoulders as she placed her spoon into what I could now see was chocolate ice cream. "Dunno. I was feeling a little wonky, but I feel a little better now."

"Hmm," I mumbled as I sat next to her on the couch. "Maybe we should call Dr. McCarty?"

"I already did, and she said maybe it's because of my hormonal changes? Whether because the insemination was successful and my body's getting used to the changes or because it didn't work and I might get my period." Bella rolled her eyes, shaking her head. "Either way, I'm fucked."

"You're fucked without having been fucked," I snorted. "Sucks to be you."

"Ha-ha! You crack me up, you funny non-motherfucker," Bella cried, playfully smacking me.

I couldn't help guffawing, so I did just that, wrapping my arm around her shoulders.

"So, what are we watching?" I asked, looking over at her as she licked her spoon.

Bella finished the little ice cream that she was eating before speaking. "Maria Isabel!" she said excitedly. "It's a new telenovela from Univision."

"A Mexican soap opera?" I asked, raising my brow at her. "Really, Bella?"

"I need to practice my Spanish, Jacobo," she scoffed.

"Your Spanish?" I laughed once again. "Since when do you speak Spanish, loca?"

Bella scooped up some ice cream and looked away from me, as she said, "I've been taking classes lately."

"Oh, like that time we watched Titanic, and you claimed that you were taking Italian classes just because you learned to say 'bastardo' in a poorly-executed accent?"

Bella gasped. "Do not mock Fabrizio!"

"I'm not," I laughed. "I'm mocking you."

"Whatever," she muttered. "You're just jealous because I'm multilingual."

"Sure, sure."

Bella scowled as she looked down at her ice-cream. "Fuck, my ice cream is melting quickly."

"That's because you're hugging it like a kid does their teddy bear," I reasoned. "And what's up with you eating so much of it?"

"It's my treat for not smoking all week long," she told me.

"That's awesome."

"Yup." Bella nodded. "This is going to be, like, my weekly prize or something."

"Just remember not to eat too much," I warned. "You don't want to get prenatal diabetes."

Bella rolled her eyes at me before pointing at the T.V. excitedly. "Ooh, look!" she said. "Right now, Eduardo Antonio is begging Maria Isabel for forgiveness since he cheated on her with Lorena Montenegro!"

Just then, the female lead slapped the male actor across the face, causing Bella to cry out, "Estupido!" as she swung her spoon from side to side in front of the television.

I looked over at her, grinning from ear to ear. "I love you so much, crazy girl."

"As I love you, Jakey."

"You're the bestest friend anyone could ask for."

"The bestest?" Bella snickered. "Mrs. Cope would have a heart attack if she heard you butchering the English language like that."

"Good thing our middle school English teacher isn't here, huh?"

"Yes! She'd make you write an essay about the proper use of superlatives."

I groaned. "Let's not talk about awful memories, shall we? Let's go back to watching Maria Isabel, and practicing your Spanish."

"Perfecto!" Bella exclaimed, swinging her spoon once again as she smiled at me.


We spent the rest of that weekend lounging around and watching movies at Bella's place. She picked an eclectic array of films—from 21 Jump Street to Hachi: A Dog's Taleto We Need To Talk About Kevin—which both made us laugh and cry. The latter causing us to discuss great independent films. Overall, it was a good way for Bella to forget the weariness that she felt, so by the time Monday rolled around, she was feeling much better.

Bella got up extra early that day and took a shower, towel drying her hair and tousling it with some hair cream. Next, she stepped into her walk-in closet and selected a three-piece suit that included a pencil skirt which enhanced her curvy figure.

And, between you and me? Her ass looked spectacular.

Oh, yeah, baby got back.

It was probably her best asset...

Damn, that was such a terrible pun—even for me.

Anywho, after she finished getting ready, she headed to work and made a stop at the Starbucks by the office. Once there, she got herself a decaf, mocha latte in exchange of her usual latte.

Everything was perfect until the moment Bella was about to leave. When she turned to exit, she miscalculated her step and crashed into a man's chest, spilling her coffee over his shirt.

"Oh, my God!" she exclaimed, shocked. "I'm so sorry."

When Bella looked up to see whom she'd crashed into, she gasped, because, there, standing in front of her, stood the most beautiful man she'd ever seen.

His face was something nice to look at given that he had what could be considered chiseled features; his blue-green eyes were captivating, and his pouty lips were just begging to be bitten in the throes of passion. And his hair? Well, those copper waves looked liked they'd been pulled while he drove someone into a frenzy. Goddamn, no wonder Bella gasped when she saw him.

Yeah, you would have gasped, too.

Heck, I'll admit that even I would volunteer to help him "experiment" if he weren't gay. Just saying.

Probably realizing that Bella was checking him out, the sex god smirked crookedly at her.

"Don't worry about it," he said dismissively. "Accidents happen all the time, right?"

Bella, who was a flustered mess, simply nodded, but then as soon as she saw the damage she'd done, she apologized again.

"You should try to get the stain out," she suggested. Suddenly, using one of the napkins she had in her hand, Bella reached out to his chest and began rubbing the stain in an attempt to soak up the coffee she'd spilled on him.

The stranger was amused, yet he didn't stop Bella from what she was doing.

Meanwhile, Bella patted the paper towel over the stain repeatedly, unconscious of the fact that she was practically feeling him up in front of the other patrons. When she realized just how built and sculpted he was, Bella blurted, "Fuck, you're so hard."

Super-Hottie laughed loudly, causing Bella to realize just how wrong that sounded.

Abashed, Bella stepped away, removing her hands.

"I need to go," she said dejectedly. "Sorry for ruining your shirt."

Just as she was about to turn to leave, the stranger reached out to stop her from doing so. "I'm sorry for being an ass," he told her. "I didn't mean to make you feel bad."

Bella looked up at him, shaking her head. "It's okay."

"No, it's not," he said. "Please allow me to replace your drink. It's the least I can do."

Bella didn't have to think too long about it. "Fine, but now you're getting me a Venti latte instead of my Grande."

The stranger laughed. "I'll even get you a scone if you'd like."

"I'd actually prefer a blueberry muffin," Bella told him.

"That's fine, too," he said, amused.

"Alright, then let's go get in line before another one of the crazies comes over and spills her drink all over you again."

"After you," he said, motioning for her to lead the way.

As Bella walked ahead, the stranger-hottie unabashedly admired her booty, which looked even better with the black pumps she was rocking.

Once Bella reached the end of the line, he began conversing with her. "Do you mind if I ask you your name?"

"Oh, no not at all," she said, shaking her head. "I'm Isabella Swan."

"My name's Edward Cullen," he told her as he extended his hand to shake hers, "nice to meet you."

Bella smiled. "You're a liar, Edward Cullen. It can't be nice to have met me this way."

"I'm afraid your accusations are false," Edward teased.

"Oh, you sound just like one of the many guilty clients I have represented in court," she said, playfully.

"So, you're an attorney?"

Bella nodded. "Business attorney, actually, but that still manages to land me in trials sometimes."

"I don't mean to offend you with my next statement," he started, "but you look awfully young to be a lawyer. Although, if you think about it from another perspective, that is very admirable."

Bella blushed. "Thank you for your compliments, Edward, yet I'll have you know that I'm not that young. I turned thirty a few months ago."

"That's still younger than me," he informed her. "I'm thirty four."

"So, what do you do for a living?" Bella asked in an attempt to shift the conversation away from her.

Smiling mischievously, Edward said, "I'm a doctor."

"That's nice." And hot, she added mentally.

"It really is," Edward commented. "So, tell me something, Bella: do you come here often? Because I hadn't seen you before."

"I come here almost every day, actually."

"Really? Is it usually at this hour? Because I come in almost daily, too, but I usually do it at a later time.

"Yeah, I stop by on the way to my office."

"Well, I guess I'll have to stop by earlier," he said, smirking. "I just hope you'll accept my invitation to have coffee with me."

Despite the slight flirting that they'd been doing, Bella still managed to blush. "Sure." She shrugged. "Just make sure that you put your hands in front of yourself to avoid me crashing into you again."

Edward laughed. "I'll keep that in mind."


Over the course of the following weeks, Edward and Bella continued their coffee rendezvous, but she hadn't told me anything yet. The only one that knew about Bella's new friend was Jessica, and while I could feel hurt that Bella hadn't confided in me, I also understood that she hadn't done it out of fear about what I'd say. After all, she had just convinced me to have a baby because she said she wasn't interested in dating. I never mentioned anything, though, since I only suspected that something new was going on.

I would notice the new glint in her eyes whenever we would hang out together, yet I waited for her to tell me what was the reason behind it, but it didn't happen until Edward asked her out on a date.

Bella nervously wrung her hands in her lap as she looked at me.

"So," she begun, "I have something to tell you, Jakey."

"Just spit it out, fruit-loop," I said once I finished eating my pizza. "Don't drag it out."

Nodding, she took a deep breath, and said, "I'm-kinda-seeing someone-and-I'm-going-on-a-date-tomorrow."

"Aha!" I exclaimed. "That's what you've been hiding."

Bella pouted. "How did you know I was hiding something?"

"Girl, please," I scoffed, waving my hand. "I've known you since we were rugrats. Don't you think I know you well enough by now?"

"God, you suck," she muttered.

"Sometimes, but when I do, I do it well," I deadpanned.

"So, you're not going to say anything about it? There's no lecture about how I told you I wasn't going to date anymore and I'm doing it again?"

"Nope," I said, making a popping noise. "All I ask is that you tell this guy everything."

Bella raised her brow. "What do you mean by everything?"

"That you asked me to be the father of your child, and that you might already be pregnant of said child right now."

Biting her lip, Bella nodded.

"Okay, then, you have nothing to worry about," I told her. "Just remember that if things get serious between you guys, I still get to keep my rights as the baby's father—it's part of our agreement."

"Whoa," she said, panicking. "Things are nowhere near that."

I shrugged. "I never said they did, fruit-loop. I'm just telling you to keep it in mind."

"Okay, whatever." Bella rolled her eyes. "Anyway, can you come over tomorrow night to help me pick out my outfit and then suggest what to do with my hair and stuff?"

"Sure, sure," I said before taking another bite of pizza.

Oh, brother, I thought. It's not serious, but she really wanted to impress him.


Things were about to get interesting.

The following night, Bella and I had a blast getting her ready for her big date. While we did, she told me all about how they met and how long they'd been seeing each other. She also shared details of how funny and sweet he was with her, and also shared some of the texts that he'd been sending her. It wasn't hard to come to the conclusion that both were pretty much invested in each other, and that revelation left me feeling a little disconcerted because it was obvious that she still hadn't told him she could be pregnant with our baby.

We still didn't know for sure if that that was the case because Bella had spotted a bit when she was supposed to have her period, and when she called Dr. McCarty to inform her, she'd been told that it was probably because the insemination had not been successful. Dr. McCarty then scheduled her for an appointment for the following week to do some tests and examine her just to make sure, but also advised to continue with the precautionary measures she'd been taking.

I was still around when Edward finally arrived to pick Bella up, but since I was in the bathroom, he didn't know. So, it wasn't a surprise to find him and Bella practically making out by her door. Clearing my throat, I made my presence known. Bella blushed as she looked to me, holding Edward's hand.

"Hey, Jake, I want to introduce you to my date," she said, motioning to him. "This is Edward Cullen."

And Edward Cullen didn't look amused. He sized me up as he extended his hand, and said, "Nice to meet you, Jake."

"Likewise," I told him. "It's nice to finally be able to put a face to your name."

"I'm afraid I can't say the same," Edward told me. "I haven't really heard much about you."

"He's my best friend," Bella interjected, looking a bit uneasy.

"Her gay best friend," I said, pointedly.

Edward still didn't relax, and I knew then that we'd eventually have a problem in the future because of how much time I spent with Bella.

"Are you roommates?" he asked in a terse tone.

"Edward," she chided, shaking her head at him. "What's the matter with you?"

"It's okay," I told her. "I get it. If I were him, I'd also be worried about my girl spending so much time with another guy." Looking at him, I continued, "You don't have to worry about anything, though. I have my own place, and Bella and I are like family."

Edward snickered as he looked down, abashed. "I apologize for my behavior, but it's just that I really like Bella."

"I can see that," I told him. "And judging from my buddy here, she feels the same way, so don't fuck it up, man."

"And there's the threat that I was missing," he joked.

Laughing, I shrugged. "I wouldn't be doing my duty as a best friend if I didn't threaten you."

"Okay, okay," Bella said. "The pissing contest is over." She looked over to Edward, and asked, "Are you ready to go?"

"I'm ready when you're ready," he replied.

Bella's face lit up. "Okay, let's get going!"

Wanting to speak privately to her, I said, "Maybe you should retouch your make-up, or at least your lipstick."

Nodding, Bella told Edward that she was going to the bathroom, and as she headed there, I followed behind her.

When she finally reached her half-bathroom, I grabbed her hand. "You need to tell him, Bella."

"Tell him what?" she asked, genuinely clueless.

I sighed, rubbing the nape of my neck. "About the baby?"

"Oh, yeah." She exhaled, looking nervous once again. "Look, I was actually waiting for our appointment with Dr. McCarty to make sure that I'm pregnant. I mean, I'd take a test sooner, but I don't feel different at all, you know? So, that's what I'm going to do," she said, determined. " I'm going to wait until I'm sure."

"If that's what you want, but I still think that you should tell him soon."

"I will, I promise."

"Okay," I smiled. "Now hurry up and reapply the wonderful lipstick that the animal of your date spread all over your face."

Bella gasped, turning to look at herself in the mirror. "You're a liar!" she told me when she saw that I had just been kidding.

"And my pants are on fire!" I said, chuckling.

Gripping my hand tightly, Bella smiled at me. "Thanks so much for your help tonight."

"No problem," I told her. "And judging by the way Edward's been looking at you, he really likes what you're wearing."

Bella blushed for the second time that night. "Yeah, I think he likes these skinny jeans, too."

"But, I think there's something else that he likes even more."

"Oh, yeah?"

"Yup," I replied. "I think he really likes you, fruit-loop."

That was probably the understatement of the year.

Edward was head over heels about her, and that worried me for many reasons.

Bella and Edward's date was a total success. After their sushi dinner—where they shared a lot of laughs and kisses—they headed to the movie theatre and watched Last Vegas. That film was right up Bella's alley, so she loved the fact that Edward enjoyed it, too. When it was time to drop Bella off, she asked Edward to walk her to door. Once there, they began kissing, but got carried away again as they had when he picked her up.

Edward exhaled, gazing into Bella's eyes once they pulled apart. "I should go," he told her.

"Are you sure?" Bella asked, disappointed. "You can come in if you'd like."

Licking his lips, Edward chuckled. "Bella, if I go inside, I won't be able to keep my hands to myself."

Bella pressed a quick kiss to his lips, biting him gently when it was over. "Who ever said that I wanted you to do that, huh?"

"Fuck, baby," Edward hissed. "You're making my goal of being a gentleman very hard."

In a bold move, Bella reached down and grabbed Edward's cock. "This is only hard thing that I'm interested in, Edward… Fuck being a gentleman."

Edward moaned into her mouth as he gave Bella a heated kiss, reaching down to grip her ass. "I'd rather fuck you," he whispered in her ear once their kiss was over.

"Then do it," she whispered back before they entered her condo.

On the way to her room, Edward and Bella kissed passionately while they began undressing each other. Edward and Bella's shirts were the first to go, landing haphazardly somewhere on the floor. When they finally reached their destination, Edward quickly removed Bella's bra, kissing and sucking her breasts almost immediately. Meanwhile, Bella worked on removing his jeans as she unbuckled and unzipped them.

"Gimme a second," Edward panted, taking out his wallet from his back pocket and extracting a condom from it as he stepped out of his shoes.

Resuming her task, Bella finally pushed down his jeans, admiring the large bulge in his black boxer briefs. She licked her lips as she imagined what he would feel like in her mouth—what he tasted like—and just as she was going to touch him, Edward stopped her.

"If you touch me now, I'll probably come all over your hand," he warned her. "As it is, I don't think I'm going to last too long, baby. I want you too much."

"Then just fuck me already," Bella almost whined.

"Okay." Edward laughed. "Take off your pants and get on the bed."

Bella did as instructed, leaning against her pillows as Edward removed his boxers and socks. She watched him hungrily as he stroked his hardness while he watched her, too.

"Take off your panties and touch yourself," he commanded, sheathing himself with the condom.

A loud moan erupted from Bella's lips as she did just that, but before she could do anything else, Edward was already crawling over her. His hand joined hers, rubbing her clit as he held himself up with the other. Leaning down, he captured her lips in an ardent kiss while he placed the head of his cock at her entrance, thrusting into her without warning.

"Fuck," Edward groaned, closing his eyes briefly. "You feel so good, Bella.

He didn't allow her to respond as he kissed her again, taking her hands and pinning them above her head.

"I promise I'll make it good for you next time," he said between kisses. "But right now, this is going to be fast and hard."

"Fast and hard is good," Bella panted, "real good."

"Good," Edward said between a moan and a chuckle before he resumed kissing her.

Bella pushed against his hands until Edward released them, threading her fingers into his hair. Having his hands free, Edward gripped her ass and slightly lifted it, thrusting deeper while Bella wrapped her legs around his waist. This new position allowed Edward to rub against her g-spot every time he rocked into her, causing Bella to come quickly with a loud moan. Edward increased his pace, groaning as he sought his own release. After almost a minute, he tightened his grip on Bella's ass, shuddering as he cried out and spilled into the condom.

Rolling over on the bed, he lay breathless by Bella's side.

"Damn," Bella panted as she looked at the ceiling. "That was better than what I imagined our first time would be like."

Edward laughed wholeheartedly, turning over to look at her as he lay on his side. "You're really cute, you know that?" he asked before he leaned down and kissed her for what felt was the millionth time. Pulling away from her, Edward gazed into Bella's eyes. "You're beautiful."

Bella smiled up at him, flushing at his words. "You're beautiful, too," she whispered.

"Not as much as you," Edward argued.

Nervous about what she was about to say next, Bella took a deep breath and then licked her lips. "Edward?"


"Will you spend the night?"

Edward grinned crookedly. "Yeah," he replied.

The following morning, everything was perfect as Bella got up early to make Edward coffee and breakfast. She danced around in her kitchen, singing Katy Perry's "Firework" as she made bacon and eggs while Edward still slept. When he finally awoke, they ate in her living room while they watched a rerun episode of Bones before Edward had to leave.

"I'll call you tonight," he told Bella as they kissed goodbye by her door.

"Okay." Bella smiled. "I'll be waiting for it."

"Thank you for last night," Edward said. "I really had a great time."

"I did, too," Bella told him. "Maybe we can have a repeat of it soon."

"Hopefully very soon," Edward said, smiling in a naughty manner.

Bella nodded, smiling as well. "Yes, we'll plan it later. Now go before I bring you back inside and lock you up."

"Alright," Edward agreed before giving her one last small kiss. "See you soon, baby."

Bella seemed to be on cloud nine as she went back to her living room, smiling as she remembered everything that had happened the night before. Unfortunately, that only lasted for a small while, because as soon as she recalled the sushi dinner they'd shared, she rushed to the bathroom and threw up. Afterward, when Bella was brushing her teeth, she realized that it probably hadn't been the sushi that had gotten her sick.

I'm pregnant, she thought. I'm sure of it now.

I guess that's what maternal instincts are all about, because Bella was right. She confirmed it after she took three home pregnancy tests that I bought for her at the drug store. Since Bella's appointment with Dr. McCarty was that coming week, Bella didn't have to reschedule it when she called Dr. McCarty to let her know about what happened. I felt bad for Bella after Dr. McCarty ripped her a new one over the phone when Bella told her that she'd eaten sushi.

When we finally went to her office for Bella's appointment, Dr. McCarty did the series of tests that she'd told us about before, including a transvaginal ultrasound, so we obtained the very first picture of our baby. Bella and I cried while it happened; both of us excited and happy, but more than anything, we were nervous.

"What's going to happen now?" was the question that resounded in my mind, and probably Bella's, too.

She continued to see Edward, but because the pregnancy was finally causing her to feel lethargic, all they ever did was spend time at her place and cuddle while they watched TV together. When Fridays rolled around, I was included in their nighttime activities until it was time to go to bed—where Edward and Bella would snuggle some more until she passed out cold for the night. I'm pretty sure that Edward was suffering a terrible case of blue balls by the second week of doing just that.

What always had me worried, and caused me to lose sleep, was worrying about what Edward would do when he found out that Bella was pregnant. She still hadn't told him yet, which made me wonder what she'd told him about her current health issues. When I finally dared to ask her, Bella said that she'd told him she was anemic and he'd obviously believed it.

Sadly, I wasn't able to spend more time with them to investigate if things were all right between them since I was swamped at work with a new case that required me to have another lawyer assisting me. The good thing was that Charlie had recently hired Riley, a new lawyer that had just finished law school, and he was assigned to the case, helping me out a lot. The only bad thing about it was that Riley reminded me of Travis, my favorite porn star, so I was always daydreaming when he was around.

The aforementioned case was taking over all my time, which caused me to run late for Bella's second monthly check-up. Bella called to remind me of the appointment, but since I was still in court, I couldn't answer. She left me a voice mail to let me know that Dr. McCarty wasn't in and that Carmen had given her the option to see the doctor's brother if she wanted to keep her appointment.

Despite being nervous about seeing a male doctor, Bella agreed because she simply wanted to get her check-up done and Carmen had told her that he was a good OB/GYN, too. As she waited for him to arrive to the examination room, Bella called me once more.

"Jakey, I hope you're on your way here since you can't answer my call again." After a beat of silence while she sighed, Bella continued. "I'm really nervous about this, so just get here when you can. Please."

Bella looked to her watch as the door finally opened and the doctor entered, but when she looked up to see him, she didn't expect Edward to be standing there.

"Edward," she gasped. "What are you doing here?"

Edward didn't look amused as he chuckled darkly. "I could ask you the same thing, but I guess it's pretty obvious, right?"

"Please, let me explain," Bella begged as she stood. "I can tell you everything—"

"What is there to explain, Bella?" he seethed, motioning to her medical file. "Anything I'd need to know is in here."

"No, it's not," she said desperately as she took a step toward him. "There are things that you don't know."

"Like, what?" Edward spat. "Like the reason that you lied to me?"

Bella shook her head as tears began to form in her eyes. "I didn't lie to you, Edward. If anyone's lied here, it's been you—since the beginning."

"When did I lie to you?" he asked incredulously.

"When you introduced yourself," Bella explained as tears of hurt and anger streamed down her face. "You said you were a doctor, but you never told me that you were a gynecologist. You didn't even tell me that Rosalie was your sister."

Edward scoffed. "I didn't tell you about my profession because I was afraid that you were going to freak out when you found out like many other women I've met before you have."

"You've had lots of time to tell me, and you didn't," she cried.

"So have you," Edward accused. "When were you planning on telling me that you and Jake are having a baby, huh?"

Bella sobbed as she looked down. "I don't know... I didn't want to tell you because I was afraid that you'd leave me."

"That's still going to happen," Edward warned in a venomous tone. "Because I can't stay with someone that would lie about something like this."

"I'm sorry," Bella told him. "I'm so sorry, but please don't do this." She took another step toward him, causing Edward to flinch when she placed her hand on his arm.

"Don't touch me," he spat, moving away from her. "From this point on, forget that I exist because that's exactly what I'm going to do with you."

Bella's heart broke as she looked at him. This wasn't the Edward that she knew—the Edward that she loved. Because that's what she realized a while back, and although she hadn't planned on it, she accepted it happily. The only thing that she was afraid of was what was currently happening before her very eyes.

Edward was leaving her, and she couldn't do anything to prevent it.

So many things were left unsaid between them as Edward hastily parted from the examination room, leaving Bella with so many questions that would remain unanswered.

Carmen entered the room at that moment, hugging Bella as she finally broke down and released all the anguish that she felt.

"I'm really sorry, Bella," Carmen told her. "I tried to stop him from coming in here once I realized how upset Edward was, but he wouldn't be deterred. His mind was made as soon as he read your file, and I had no idea that you were dating him, otherwise I wouldn't have suggested that you see him."

"It's not your fault." Bella sniffled as she stepped away from the embrace, wiping her tears. "This was all on me."

"I hope you understand that I have to tell Rosalie about this," Carmen said nervously.

"Do you think that she'll ask me to go see another doctor? Because I don't want that."

Carmen shook her head. "No, she would never do that, but she still has to know that her brother stepped way out of line."

"It's alright," Bella said, sniffling once more. "I understand that it's because of your policies and ethic."

"Are you going to be okay?"

Bella nodded. "I am; I just need to get out of here."

"You can't leave by yourself while you're like this," Carmen told her.

"Jake should be here soon, so I'll just wait for him."

"Okay." Carmen nodded. "I'll let you stay here while you wait for him if you'd like."

"Thank you, Carmen; that would be perfect."

"I need to go now, but I'll let Jake know that you're here as soon as he arrives."

Bella nodded once more, taking a seat to wait for me. As she did so, she continued to cry, wanting nothing more than to forget what happened, but it was impossible. When I finally arrived, I found her lost in her thoughts, as is if she were somewhere else.

That's when I realized that all my fears had come true: Edward had broken her, and in more ways than one.


I was so engrossed in the case file I was reading that I didn't notice when Charlie entered my office. He had already closed the door behind him as she approached my desk, calling my name.

"Do you think you can give me a minute of your attention?" he asked. "There's something important that I'd like to talk to you about."

"Sure." I nodded, standing to collect the files on my desk that might get in his way. "Please take a seat."

"Thank you, Son," he said, as he sat across from me.

"So, what's up?" I asked, taking my seat again. "Is this about the Volturi case?"

Charlie shook his head. "Oh, no—not at all—this is actually about Bella."

"I figured as much," I sighed. "Is she still dead set on overworking herself?"

"She is, and I don't know what to do." He exhaled deeply, looking older than he ever had before. "Just this morning she accepted to take on another case, even though I specifically asked her not to. If the situation were different, I would be happy, but, Jake—she's five months pregnant—this could be dangerous for her."

Yeah, three months had passed since her break-up with Edward, and many things happened during that time; the first of them being that we finally informed our family about her pregnancy. My father and Charlie were ecstatic, gushing about how they were going to be grandpas to the same child, while my mother was thrilled since she never thought I'd have children.

"This is the best decision you've taken," she said. "I'm so proud of you, and I know that you'll be an excellent father."

Unfortunately, the excitement of our news waned, allowing Bella to focus on the negative aspect of her life. Little by little, she submerged herself in work, and eventually closed herself off to everyone—including me. This situation was breaking my heart, and I didn't know how to proceed, but I did know that it had to stop because it was only getting worse.

"It could be," I said, agreeing with Charlie's previous observation. "I've tried talking to her before, but she won't listen."

"Do you think you could give it another try?" he asked desperately. "I'm running out of ideas about what to do, and this is all on me. I don't have anyone else to count on besides you."

"Definitely," I said, leaning on my desk as I took a deep breath. "Bella's more than my best friend—she's like my sister—so of course I'll do everything in my power to help."

Charlie smiled sadly. "Thank you, Jacob."

"You're welcome," I told him. "But now that you're here, I'm going to go ahead and tell you what conclusion I've drawn about Sulpicia Volturi's case."

"Sure, go ahead."

"She's guilty, Charlie," I said, defeated, "and there's really nothing that I can do to avoid her permanent arrest. I'm looking for a loophole in everything that's been presented as evidence, but I haven't been able to find anything. I'm going to try a different tactic and try to blame Aro for Didyme's murder, but you know that will only win me time before the jury finds her guilty of her sister's murder."

Charlie nodded. "How did you know?"

"How did I know she was guilty?"


"Well, I would say it's an instinctual feeling—which is true—but I also have been able to decipher that she did it out of passion. It's abundantly clear that Aro and Didyme were having an affair behind her back from all the evidence we have."

"So, what are you going to do with that information?"

"I'm going for pity," I confessed. "At this point, it's the only option I have to get her a smaller sentence."

Charlie grinned. "And that's why you're one of the best attorneys at the firm, Son. You're making your father and I very proud."

"Thank you," I said, chagrined. "But really, I've simply been lucky enough to learn from both of you. I couldn't have asked for a better example."

Chuckling, Charlie shook his head. "Okay, Kid, no more kissing my ass—I already like you."

"Sure, sure," I told him, laughing right along.

"Well, alright," Charlie said as he stood from his seat, "I'll let you get back to work. And I know I shouldn't say this because I'm the boss, but don't work too hard, Kid. Go home and enjoy the rest of your Friday night."

"I will; I promise."

I watched as he made his exit, thinking about what to do next. Figuring that my work was done for the day—considering that I had finally decided which route I was going to take with my case—I began to pack up my things and then headed to Bella's office.

Sighing, I stood by her open door and observed her as she sat by her desk in a similar manner as I had awhile before. There were papers surrounding its surface while she also read a thick book, and judging from the notepad and pencil she held, she was taking some notes, too. As I took in her appearance, I noticed that she looked haggard and disheveled; her hair looked like she'd ran her hand through it a million times, and the black-rimmed glasses that usually adorned her face looked grimy as if they'd been neglected for awhile.

Finally, I tapped on Bella's doorframe, and said, "Knock, knock."

"Hey," she replied without looking up at me.

I stepped inside, standing by her desk. "Are you planning on spending the night here, or what? It's getting late."

"No," she replied, turning the book's page. "I just need to get started on my new client's deposition, so I'm rounding up my facts about the case."

Feigning ignorance, I asked her, "You have a new case? I thought Charlie said that you couldn't take on anymore."

Bella simply shrugged. "Yeah, well, my dad needs to stop worrying about what I do. I'm a grown adult that can take decisions on her own."

"You may be an adult, but that doesn't stop Charlie from worrying about you. He's your father, Bella, for crying out loud."

Exhaling deeply, Bella finally looked up at me as she put her pencil down. "Listen, Jake—"

"No, you listen to me, Bella," I snarled. "I get it that you're hurt, that you're trying to stay busy to keep yourself from thinking about Edward, but stop acting like the brat that you usually are."

Something inside Bella snapped, changing her features as she became furious. "You have no idea about what I'm going through, Jacob," she barked.

"No, actually, I don't, because you won't talk to me anymore, but I can imagine. Having your heart broken is awful, I know that."

Bella ran her hand through her hair, shaking her head. "It's not that simple," she tried to reason. "I'm trying to get better—to feel better—but I can't."

"That doesn't mean that you have to take it out on everyone else, and honestly, you brought this upon yourself. I told you many times to come clean with Edward about your pregnancy, but you wouldn't listen. No, you had to do it your way, because everything always has to be done your way. So, stop being a selfish bitch and get your shit together already."

"Get the fuck out of my office, Jake!" she seethed. "I fucking hate you!"

"Do you really mean that?" I asked coolly. "Because I'll leave you alone, but that's not what I want. Tell me what to do to help you, sweetie, and I'll do it."

Bella's lip trembled as she slumped her shoulders and began to cry. "No, I…" she sniffled. "I don't mean that, I'm sorry."

I was by her side in an instant, wrapping her up in my embrace. "I know, and I'm sorry, too, but seriously, Bella, you need to do something to get out of this funk."

"I know," she sobbed. "I promise I'm going to try harder, but it's just that I really miss Edward."

"You miss him more than me?" I asked in a playful tone, trying to lighten to the mood.

"No." She hiccoughed. "I miss you more. I don't have anyone to practice my Spanish with anymore."

"Oh, sweetie," I crooned. "I miss practicing your Spanish with you, too."



Bella sniffled. "Okay, we can do that when we spend some time together again."

"I promise, but for now, let's go home, alright? We'll order our usual pizza and watch This Is the End."

"Okay," she agreed. "I'd like that very much."

Hugging her a bit more tightly, I sighed, content that things between us were going to be the same again.

There was something else that I had to do, but that would have to wait until a later time. I just hoped that my plans worked out since it wouldn't be easy.

It didn't matter, though; desperate measures call for desperate times.

Or something like that.



A whole month had passed since my confrontation with Bella, and things were slowly starting to go back to normal. Charlie and I finally managed to convince Bella to lessen her caseload by giving Riley some of her clients. While she had been skeptic at first, given that Riley is not a business attorney, Charlie and I both reiterated that he was good at what he did.

Especially in bed, but I'll tell you all about it at another time.

So, once she had more time to herself, Bella focused on getting well as per Rosalie's suggestion.

Let me tell you, Dr. McCarty, can be scary.

She made Bella cry when I told her how many hours a week she was working, but then again, Bella cried over everything lately. Needless to say, all her sad movies had taken permanent residence in my home, because I'd be damned if she she broke down after watching The Notebook one more time.

Trust me, it wasn't pretty.

One of the positive outcomes from our altercation was spending our Friday nights together again at Bella's place. Riley began joining us, creating a new bond between him and Bella, which was something that made me really happy.

Yeah, the small crush that I had on him because of his looks was developing into something more. Hopefully, things would work out between us as a couple, but enough about me.

Let's get back to Bella!

She had a lot of apologizing to do, but especially to Jessica, since in her quest to detached herself from everyone, Bella had hurt her the most. Things weren't the same between them, and I doubt they ever would, but both were trying.

Jessica was still wary of Bella, so when Jessica approached her, she did so nervously.

"Bella, there's someone here to see you," she said softly.

Bella looked up from the contract she was reading and pushed up her glasses. "I thought we didn't have any appointments scheduled for today."

"We don't, and that's what I told him, but he said it was very important to see you."

That certainly piqued Bella's curiosity. "Did you ask for his name?"

Jessica nodded. "Yeah, he said he's Edward Cullen, and that he's not leaving until you speak with him."

Bella paled as she heard Edward's name, and her heart began beating faster.

Jessica stared at Bella, waiting for her instructions, but they never came. "So..." Jessica eventually prompted. "Do you want me to bring him in?"

Bella nodded. "Yes, just give me a minute before you do."

Jessica left, allowing Bella to gather her thoughts. She had no idea what Edward could possibly want, but she was determined to hold herself together while she found out.

A few minutes had passed when Jessica finally escorted Edward into Bella's office, closing the door behind her as she left.

Bella looked up to him, remaining stoic as she took in his appearance. He still looked the same, almost as much as he did the day they'd met. Motioning to her chair, she told him, "Please take a seat."

"Thank you," he said, exhaling as he did so.

"So, what can I do for you, Edward? Do you need some assistance for your practice?"

Edward shook his head. "I'm not here for business, Bella. I actually came to talk to you."

"I find that hard to believe since the last time we spoke, you were pretty clear about not wanting to have anything to do with me."

Feeling as if he'd been punched in the gut, Edward looked down briefly. "That's something that I have to apologize for, and it's actually the reason why I'm here."

Bella was afraid of becoming hopeful that he was there for more than that, so she dismissed him quickly. "You don't have anything to apologize for, Edward. I know that you were upset, and rightfully so, so I understand why you'd react the way that you did."

"No," Edward refuted. "I had no right to treat you the way that I did. And yes, I was mad—heartbroken—when I last saw you, but you have to know that I regretted those words as soon as I said them."

"If that were true, what took you so long to come and apologize, then?"

Edward chuckled humorlessly. "I guess I needed to have my ass kicked by my sister so that I'd finally get my head out of my ass."

"Rosalie spoke to you about me?" Bella asked surprised.

"She did." Edward nodded. "And she wasn't very nice when she did it."

Bella snickered. "Yeah, Rosalie can be a little rough around the edges, but she only means well."

"You care about each other," Edward stated rather than asked since that much was apparent.

"We do," Bella confirmed. "She's become a friend to me."

"That makes me happy," Edward confessed, smiling. "And I know my sister definitely feels the same way."

"Can I ask you something?" Bella said, remembering something that she thought about a lot in the past. At Edward's nod, she continued. "Why didn't you ever tell me about her? I mean, you told me you had a sister and a brother, but you never mentioned their names. Maybe that's why I never made the connection between you two, but it was mostly because of your last names—they're not the same."

Edward sighed. "If I tell you it was because we were just getting to know each other that would sound pretentious, but in a way, it's true. During our relationship, Bella, we focused more on ourselves—on what we were doing in the moment—so we didn't really talk about other things."

"That is true," Bella agreed. "That's also the reason why I hadn't told you about my pregnancy since I didn't want to ruin what we were barely starting."

"I wouldn't have been upset if you'd told me since the beginning," Edward confessed. "My hurt came from the fact that I felt betrayed, Bella. When I found out about your pregnancy, all the trust I had in you vanished. I kept thinking that if you kept something so important from me, what else you would also hide."

"It's taken me some time to realize that that was my biggest mistake," Bella told him. "If I hadn't allowed for our relationship to develop as it did, it wouldn't have hurt as much when you left."

"What makes you think that I would have left you once you told me about your baby?"

"I couldn't imagine you wanting to be with me when I'm having another man's child, Edward—especially Jacob's. I saw how wary you were of him in the beginning, and my bond with him is only going to get stronger when the baby finally arrives."

Edward nodded as she continued.

"I also want to you to know how conflicted I was about the situation as a whole, because while I wanted to be with you, I also never regretted the decision to have my baby. That thought never crossed my mind even for a second."

"Bella, you have no idea how sorry I am for the way I treated you and the things I said. I have spent every day berating myself for it, hating the way that I handled everything, but you have to know that I was out of my mind when I confronted you. The words were out of my mouth before I could take them back."

"Why did you wait until now to apologize then?"

Edward smiled sadly, as he said, "I wasn't aware that there was a possibility that you'd forgive me."

"Edward, how could you not have known? I practically begged you to stay with me."

"I remembered that, but I also thought about how you'd be able to forgive me if I couldn't forgive myself for hurting you the way I did."

"I still don't understand," Bella told him. "It's been four months since it happened, so what could have changed your mind?"

"Jacob went to look for me at my office," Edward confessed. "He told me about how much you were hurting, and although I believed him, I couldn't fathom why you'd give me another opportunity. But then Rosalie threatened to chop off my balls if I didn't at least try."

Bella laughed as tears filled her eyes. She'd miss this, but especially she'd missed Edward, and it wasn't until that moment that realized how much.

Edward stood quickly from his seat, rounding her desk to reach Bella. "Please don't cry," he begged her. "I hate to see you sad."

"I'm not sad," Bella cried. "I'm actually happy to see you, but fuck, I'm pregnant and everything makes me cry."

Edward laughed. "I'm actually surprised you didn't cry earlier."

"I'd been holding back," she said as she wiped away some tears. "It was fucking hard but I did it."

"I never want to make you cry again. Ever," Edward told her.

Bella nodded. "Okay."

"'Okay' what?"

"Okay, don't make me cry again!" she snapped.

"Does this mean that you'll forgive me?" Edward asked, hopeful.

"Yeah, but you owe me, like, a million Venti mocha lattes!"

"I'll buy you all the lattes in the world if you give me another chance." Edward cupped Bella's face as he said, "Bella, I love you. I have loved you all this time, and if you'll allow me, I'll spend every day making sure you don't regret your decision if you take me back."

"What about Nathalie?" Bella asked as she pointed to her round belly.

"Is that the name that you and Jake chose for your baby?" Edward asked.

"Yeah." Bella sniffled. "We already started painting her nursery, too."

"I'd like to help out with that if I can," he said, "because I'm sure I'm going to love her as much as her mommy. After all, she is a little piece of you."

Bella smacked him playfully once. "You have to stop saying those kinds of things to me if you don't want me to throw you on the floor and fuck your brains out. Hormonal preggo here, remember?" she said, pointing to herself.

Edward laughed before he placed a small kiss against her lips while wrapping his arms carefully around her. "God, I missed you."

"I missed you, too," Bella whispered. "Just promise you won't leave me again."

"Never," Edward told her.

And I've been making sure that he keeps his word. He has so far, and it's been five years, so you don't have to worry. There's obviously more to their story, but this is all we have time for today. Maybe one day I'll tell you the story of the day when Nathalie was born, but I have to go now. Riley's waiting for me in bed, and there's no way I'm going to make him wait.

Till next time, honey-bunches-of-oats!

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