This week has been incredibly humbling. The wonderful ladies over at FicSisters wrote the most lovely recommendation for "The Student Teacher," as well as making a banner with a very swoony picture of this Edward. I urge you to check out their blog to find story recommendations for amazing works, both finished and in progress. The link can be found in my bio.
Thank you as well to Nicffwhisperer for the recommendation over on The Lemonade Stand. I was delighted by her kind reviews and encouragement.
To all of you who are reading, following, and reviewing, I cannot thank you enough, and I hope you continue to enjoy this story.
I do not own Twilight.
I watched as Edward's shoulders relaxed, listening to the muffled speaking on the other line. I glanced at the clock to see that it was just after six in the morning. I needed to get home to get ready for work, but my body stayed glued to the spot I was inhabiting in the kitchen.
Edward had stood and walked to the sink when his phone rang, gripping the counter with his left hand as his right held the phone to his ear.
He'd said nothing else since the worried "hello" when he answered. I stood quietly behind him, desperately trying to read him, but I couldn't see his face.
Finally, he turned to me, and before he even spoke, I could see the relief in his eyes.
"Thank you, Dr. Medlock. I will be by after work today to get him," he said before pulling the phone away and ending the call. He looked up at me and gave me his soft smile, wordlessly telling me that his furry best friend was going to be alright.
An hour and a half later, I was pulling back into Edward's driveway for school. He looked tired but better as he climbed into my car. We both had on our school t-shirts and jeans. It was a mild October day, so I had a long sleeved shirt on underneath, but he just had his t-shirt on. I may have stared a little too long at the way the muscles in his arms moved as he reached to latch his seatbelt.
"Good morning," he said with a chuckle.
"Hey," I smiled sleepily. It was certainly going to be a long day.
I'd gotten home and taken a quick shower before pulling my hair up and getting dressed. I didn't have time to get Rose to braid my hair, so I tied the ribbons around my ponytail holder and slipped on my bracelets.
"So you get to pick MoMo up after school?" I asked.
"Yeah. The doctor said they wanted to keep him today to monitor him but that the surgery had gone very well. The incision they made was barely two inches long, and they were able to retrieve the bag without compromising anything else in his stomach," he relayed.
"I'm so relieved he's okay," I sighed, leaning my right arm on the center console and driving lazily with my left arm.
"Me, too," Edward breathed, looking out the window.
We grew silent, and my mind swirled around the gratitude I had that MoMo was okay and the fulfillment I felt at having been there for Edward.
My mind was on automatic as I drove to school in the memorized path, in my own zone. I was pulled from my daze when I felt a tug on the bracelets on my wrist. I glanced down quickly and saw Edward running his pointer finger lightly across the beads as he'd done the other day. He was leaned in on the console, and I could feel the heat of our arms as we sat so close. I didn't move, and tried to appear as nonchalant as he did, as he continued to look out of the window. I wasn't even sure if he realized what he was doing, but he seemed content so I didn't say anything. I just listened to the morning talk show playing quietly in the background, letting Edward draw whatever comfort from me that he needed.
When we turned on to the road that the school was on, we both sat up a little straighter. The student parking lot, usually nearly empty at this time of the morning, was already filling up quickly. Students piled out of cars with "Go Mustangs," "Class of '15," and many other spirited phrased scribbled across their windows. Students were dressed head to toe in orange and blue, everything from their hair to their clothing and even many faces were covered in school colors, and as we rode past the parking lot, I noticed Edward smile and even chuckle at what he saw.
"They really go all out," I smiled. Edward nodded and sat back in his seat, and even though we were both sleep deprived and emotionally exhausted, I could tell that we would at least enjoy the day.
As anticipated, the students were all much too excited to get any work done. We'd already finished the movie in each class, and since classes were even shorter today to account not only for homeroom but also the pep rally, Edward and I had decided to take a different approach. We had each class break into groups and write a one page short story, each from the perspective of a different person who would in some way be involved in the game.
We'd anticipated the students breaking up into groups that usually associated with, so rather than giving the football players the assignment to write through their own perspective, we had them write a story from a band member's perspective. The other groups had the perspectives of a cheerleader, a football coach, a member of the opposing football team, a member of the school faculty, and a parent.
Each had to be observing the game and explain what it meant to them. We stressed that it should be realistic and meaningful. We wanted them to write a short story of what the football game meant to that particular individual and how the game's outcome would effect them.
It seemed simple at first, but having them put themselves in the mind of someone else proved a bigger challenge than they'd thought.
"Ms. Swan, this is hard!" Jacob stated during class. He was grouped with two other players, by his own choosing. When we'd assigned them the band member, they'd groaned.
"Jacob, the point is to use your imagination. You know what the game means to yourselves, but what do you think it means to someone in the band? The band is one of the most under appreciated groups in the stands. Can you imagine what a game would be like if you didn't hear the constant pep songs in the background? You may not realize it, but that's a sound you are accustomed to," I finished, walking around the room to peer over the shoulders of other groups. Jacob just sighed and looked back at his paper before continuing to brainstorm with the his group.
When a student who had the football coach's perspective raised her hand, Edward went over to help her. I watched as he listened to her question carefully, before squatting beside her desk to meet her and the rest of her group at eye level. I couldn't hear much of his whispered explanation, but I saw the girl and her peers nod in understanding. One of the girls even startled with an idea before putting her pencil to her notebook and writing furiously. Whatever he'd said had helped.
By the end of our classes that day, we'd had a chance to read some interesting stories. Some didn't take the assignment very seriously, but others put an impressive amount of creativity into them.
We decided we'd grade them over the weekend and use the scores as extra credit for each student. The best stories would be read aloud to the class on Monday.
I felt exhausted but also excited all throughout the day. I wasn't even planning to attend the game that night, but the buzz of excitement among the other students and faculty was infectious. I was also incredibly anxious to see MoMo. Edward had filled me in on what the doctor had said, and even though I knew MoMo was doing well and would make a full recovery, I knew I'd feel better once I saw the little guy for myself.
I suspected Edward had the same anticipation keeping him going, because all day, I'd see him stifle yawns, but somehow never lose the glimmer in his eye in knowing that his best friend would be okay and he'd soon get to see him and take him home.
He perked up during the parade and pep rally, because it was impossible not to be effected by the loudness and excitement of it all, but still I could tell that neither of us had our full attention on it.
Finally, the day ended, and Edward and I moved quickly to gather our belongings. We had no reason to stay later today, and there was somewhere else we both desperately wanted to be.
As we climbed into my car, Edward pulled out his phone to check his messages.
"Alice and Jasper went to get my car earlier and left it at the house for me, so if you just want to take me there, we can get my car to go get MoMo," he said. "Or, I mean, I can go get him. Please don't feel like you have to go. I mean, I know you are wiped and need to get home to rest-"
"Edward," I cut him off. "First of all, there is truly nowhere else I want to be than heading with you to see MoMo. Second of all, we are already in my car. St. Francis is not that far, and this way you can lay him in the back again so that you can sit nearer to him," I shrugged.
"Bella, are you sure?" he asked. I looked over at him quickly before turning out of the parking lot. "You've done so much already. I'm honestly embarrassed by how much I've asked of you. Here you are, my superior, and I'm making you chauffeur me around and pick up my dog," he said with a sigh.
"Edward," I said again, more sternly. "I haven't done anything that I didn't want to do," I started, and when he moved to say something, I cut him off again. "We aren't just teacher and student teacher, and I'm certainly not your superior. We are peers, coworkers, and more than anything, we're friends. Best friends," I reiterated the sentiment we'd shared last weekend.
I remembered the way his hands felt around me, felt the flutter in my belly at the closeness we'd shared. I knew that what we were defining as friendship was a bit more than was probably appropriate, but being with him felt right. I couldn't find it in me to worry, because we were still dancing carefully beside the line that we hadn't crossed. And I knew how I felt. I knew that Edward was worth the wait now. If being more to him and having him as more to me was the end result of this wait, then I could handle a few more months of innocent touching and honest words.
"Bella, you are my best friend. You are the best friend I've ever had," Edward said in a whispered voice, and I had to focus on the road to keep from letting the moisture in my eyes tumble over.
I wasn't sure if it was the tiredness, the emotion of the last 12 hours, or the raw truth behind his words now, but I was overcome and overwhelmed.
We drove quietly, and Edward relaxed in his seat until we turned into the parking lot of St. Francis. He sat up straight, his seatbelt unlatching before I'd even turned into a spot, his door flying opened the moment my car was in park.
I reached for my bag and jumped out of the car, following him as his long legs carried him as fast as they could into the office.
"Mr. Cullen, hello!" Dr. Medlock called, as she was standing behind the counter talking with one of the vet techs.
"Dr. Medlock, hi," Edward said eagerly.
"Are you ready to see your friend?" she asked, and Edward nodded.
"Meet us in exam room two," she said, turning to walk to the back area as Edward moved to walk down the hall of the office, turning into the second exam room with me trailing behind him.
Edward didn't see me, but I decided to pull out my phone and set the video. I'd seen so many cute animal videos online that I didn't want to miss an opportunity just in case.
I hadn't known what to expect, so I was pleasantly surprised to see Dr. Medlock walk through the door with MoMo on a leash walking in front of her. He was moving a little slower, and I could already see the empty patch on his stomach where they'd had to shave off his fur to operate.
"Hey, buddy!" Edward said excitedly, squatting to MoMo's level. MoMo went right up to Edward and nudged his nose on Edward's face, small whimpers coming from him. Edward rubbed MoMo's ears before slipping his arms around the dog's neck, and MoMo sweetly placed his snout on Edward's shoulder, sighing deeply once the two were hugging tightly.
I wiped at my eyes again, unable to hold back the emotion at seeing the two connect again. If people don't truly believe that animals feel emotions, they would only need to see this to understand.
I continued to video as Edward and MoMo continued to have their moment, MoMo's whimpers softening as he realized his daddy was there for him.
Finally I ended the video when Dr. Medlock started to talk to Edward.
"As I said this morning, everything went really well. We were lucky that the bag was balled up so tightly so that it wasn't interfering with any other part of his stomach. I've prescribed two medicines for his pain, one which he will need morning and night, and the other just at night. He will be drowsy today and tomorrow, but you will notice that he will start to act more like himself pretty quickly. Don't allow him to jump up and down from furniture for at least a week, as we don't want to risk tearing at the wound. Discourage him from licking at the incision, and if you notice that he still seems too preoccupied with it, you can come back to get a cone or pick one up from PetSmart," she explained, as MoMo continued to circle Edward's legs. He walked over to me and I bent to scratch his head.
"Not the cone of shame!" I whispered to MoMo in mock dramatics, and I heard Dr. Medlock chuckle.
Dr. Medlock explained to Edward a few more instructions for caring for MoMo, and before long we were on our way back out to the car. Edward carefully lifted him, one hand around his butt and the other around his neck as the doctor instructed.
MoMo stood in the back trunk area before walking in three small circles and flopping down. Edward and I smiled as we closed the trunk gently and moved to climb into the car.
The drive back to Edward's was spent with me listening to Edward croon at MoMo, his hand reached over the seat behind him to pet his furry friend. I smiled the entire way home, elated at the happiness and love I was witnessing between both of my boys.
The next morning I woke up earlier than I would have liked for a Saturday. But I had been so exhausted the night before that I was asleep by nine. So of course, I couldn't sleep past 7:30.
I'd dropped Edward off and helped him get MoMo in the house. He said he was going to relax with him and go to bed early, so I got out of their hair and headed for home.
I'd fixed a bowl of cereal for dinner and fell asleep with my phone still lit up on the bed in front of me, opened to a Pinterest page of hair care remedies I knew I'd never try.
I stretched, rolling over in bed with a sigh. I was wide awake but didn't feel much like moving. I could hear the patter of rain against the window over my fan, because yes, it was October but I slept with a fan year round.
I rolled back over and unlocked my phone to see that I already had two text messages, both from Edward. The first was from about 30 minutes earlier. It was a picture of him and MoMo, both lying in bed. He'd taken it "selfie" style, as MoMo's face was in front of his and they appeared to be spooning. MoMo had his little eyes closed, and behind him Edward was smiling. I tried not to focus too hard on his bare shoulder, knowing that meant he was without a shirt.
The picture was kind of blurry because his room was still dark, but the picture was precious.
There was a second text about 10 minutes after that one.
I didn't realized how early it was when I sent this. Sorry. MoMo insisted that you'd want to see a picture of your two favorite boys. ;)
I just laughed, because damn if MoMo hadn't been right.
I sent a quick text back.
Oh, MoMo insisted, huh? Looks to me like the only thing that MoMo is insisting on is that you take your ass on back to sleep.
I stood up, flipping on the sound on my phone, and made my way out of my room to the kitchen. Rose was already standing in there sipping her coffee and munching on a bowl of oatmeal. She was dressed for work, her hair pulled back in a chic ponytail, wearing black pants and a grey turtleneck sweater. She, of course, had her black and red Louboutins on.
"Going to work on a saturday?" I asked, rubbing the corners of my eyes to pull out the eye buggers.
"Yeah," she said sleepily, walking to the sink to rinse out her coffee mug before dropping it into the top shelf of the dishwasher. "We've got a huge case that is taking up a ton of my time. Hopefully this is the only Saturday I have to spend there, thought," she sighed.
My phone chimed then, so I opened my text and smiled.
Well, I would love to, but someone is a giant bed hog. He's lucky he's so cute.
I grinned before typing back a quick "Haha" and then setting my phone on the counter, walking to the fridge for some tea.
"Damn, at 7:30 in the morning?" Rose asked with a smirk.
"I always drink tea in the morning," I said, purposefully evading what I knew she was really talking about.
"You're such a smart ass," she laughed, walking back to her room, presumably to grab her bag.
"What's that? I have a great ass? You're so sweet," I yelled, pulling out my favorite USC Tervis Tumbler cup to pour a cold glass of sweet tea.
"So what are your plans today?" Rose asked, coming back into the room. The USC game was at home but it was against a really small school that wouldn't be that exciting. Certainly not exciting enough to sit through in the rain. We had already decided we weren't going, but the weather was enough to reaffirm that decision.
"I don't know," I shrugged, walking to the chair and curling my legs up under me. I pulled the blanket from behind me, covering up even though I was already in a big t-shirt and yoga pants. Not because I ever actually did yoga. But because those bitches were comfortable.
"I was thinking about maybe seeing if you and Em wanted to go over to Edward's with me tonight. He's kind of stuck at home for the weekend taking care of MoMo, so I thought we could take a pizza, movies and maybe Apples to Apples over there to play. I was going to text Alice, too, to see if she and Jasper wanted to come," I shrugged.
"Why is he stuck at home with MoMo?" Rose asked, slinging her purse over her shoulder and setting her travel mug into the Keurig, popping a fresh K-cup into the machine to brew another cup of coffee. Seriously, how that girl didn't spend every morning in the pooper was beyond me.
I realized then that I hadn't actually seen Rose since everything with MoMo happened, as she'd been at work and out with Emmett the night before and I had been asleep before she got home. I filled her in on everything, and she agreed that a night over at Edward's might be fun. She was going to be home by early afternoon, and since the football game was at 12, Emmett would be home by around six.
"Alright, I will check with Alice and text you to let you know the plan," I said, reaching to grab the television remote off of the coffee table. It had been set on TLC, probably because Rose had been forcing Emmett through a marathon of Say Yes to the Dress. Unfortunately, they were now running a marathon of 19 Kids and Counting, and ugh, that family was so creepy, so no thank you.
"Sounds good. Have a good morning," she called, heading out the door. I settled in when I found ABC Family, cause it was Harry Potter weekend, and despite owning every movie and having seen them all countless times, I could think of no better way to spend a lazy Saturday.
Around six, Emmett came through the door, and not even the prospect of Harry Potter on TV could cheer him up. As much as I'd tried to convince him to, he'd never read the books, but he loved the movies. We usually watched the marathons together when we could, while Rose vehemently tried to ignore them. She claimed not to like them, but on more than one occasion I'd seen her watching with the same rapt attention as Emmett and me.
"Hey, Em," I called from the couch, not looking away from the TV because my man Snape was on the screen.
"Hey, Balla," he said dejectedly.
"Oh, come on now. You guys still won," I said, finally moving to look at him as he set his bag down. The rain had slowed down throughout the day, but I imagined the wet mugginess outside made for an unpleasant game, regardless.
"But we almost didn't win," he replied. "I mean, we were playing basically the equivalent of a high school team. We should have stomped ass and gone home. Instead, we almost got our asses handed to us. It was embarrassing," he whined.
"Well, we can't all have a game like Won-won is currently having," I winked, and Emmett looked to the screen to see that I was watching the Half-Blood Prince.
"Man, I missed the Goblet of Fire?" Emmett mock cried.
"Sorry, bud, that one was on this morning," I shrugged.
"Man, this day sucks. I didn't even get to see my favorite movie. I missed Cedric," he moaned, and I just laughed. Emmett made no secret of the fact that he thought Cedric Diggory was dreamy.
"Hey, ya know what?" Emmett asked, reaching into the fridge to grab an apple and a bottle of water. I couldn't help the smirk when I saw the apple, thinking of Edward. Now that the fruits in season were changing, and we'd both realized our shared love of clementines, those had mysteriously been showing up on my desk each Monday. Finally I just bought a bag of them and kept them in a basket on my desk for us both. We usually shared them each day during lunch.
"What's that, Em?" I asked.
"Edward," he started around a messy bite of apple. "Edward kind of looks like Cedric," Emmett smiled, taking another giant bite before he'd finished the one he was chewing.
"Well, I think he's single. I could totally put in a good word for you," I laughed with a wink.
"Psssh, you think he's single? Balla, you know good and damn well that boy is single. I bet if I looked in your phone calendar, there were be a heart in there marking the day the semester was over and he could become not single," Emmett snorted.
"Kiss my big white ass," I said, tossing a pillow from the couch at him. Conveniently, it hit him square in his big white ass.
When I pulled up to Edward's later, Rose in the passenger seat and Emmett sitting in the middle of the back seat, Alice and Jasper were already there. They were sliding out of Alice's bright yellow X-terra, the "Sexterra" she called it, which always made Edward shudder and the rest of us laugh.
Alice reached into the backseat to grab a cake carrier, and Jasper opened the other door to get out a giant crate of what I assumed was some of their AJ's house brew.
Emmett grabbed the four large boxes of pizza we'd picked up at Mellow Mushroom, and Rose carried the Apples to Apples game box. I grabbed the other box in the back, the one I'd secured earlier in the day at the mall, and with a smile we all walked to the door.
Alice had assured us that busting in on Edward like this would be fine, but I was still a little nervous that there were five of us waiting at his door to surprise him.
Edward came to the door, eyes widening as he took us all in. He was standing in a pair of jeans with holes in the knees and a worn out grey Clemson t-shirt.
"Surprise!" Emmett yelled, and we all laughed.
"Wow, what are you all doing here?" Edward asked a bit nervously. "I mean, come in, come in. But what's all this?" he asked, reaching to help Emmett with the pizzas.
"It was Bella's idea," Alice said sweetly, stepping inside and walking to the kitchen to set down the tray she was holding. "We know you've had a rough few days, so we thought we'd bring food, drinks, and entertainment over to hang out with you and Mo," she smiled. As if on cue, MoMo came walking into the kitchen behind us, looking remarkably better than he had the night before.
"This is awesome, guys. Thanks!" he said excitedly. "We've been having a pretty laid back day around here," Edward shrugged.
"Well, get ready for some awesome food and getting your pretty little ass kicked," Rose said, her competitive streak making its appearance as she held up the game.
"Dude, Apples to Apples? That's my favorite!" Edward said, and the sparkle in his eyes was already making this night worth it.
"Alright guys, I don't know about y'all, but I'm starvin'. Let's eat!" Jasper called, pulling out some paper plates and napkins from one of Edward's cupboards. "Who wants beer?" he asked, walking over to the crate he'd set on the floor.
While we ate, I passed around my phone to show them all the super sweet reunion video between Edward and MoMo. Edward had been surprised that I'd taken it, but as he watched it, he'd smiled all the same.
An hour later, we were sitting around Edward's living room, laughing hysterically at Edward's latest card play. He'd had the adjective "touchy feely," and I'd been waiting on this moment to play one of my noun cards. I'd managed to secure the coveted Helen Keller card.
We were laughing so hard we had tears in our eyes as Edward dramatically read through each card. I was worried I might have played my hand too soon when he read someone else's card, "A cheap motel," but Edward and I were a lot alike, and even though he claimed he was "totally going to hell for this," he picked my Helen Keller card and I took that round.
We were all sitting on the floor with our legs crossed under us, accept Jasper who was comfortably laying on his stomach, one of the couch throw pillows balled up beneath his head. There were empty plates around us all, and we were all sipping at least our third beers.
MoMo was laying between Edward and me, his head resting lightly on my thigh. I was lightly petting him behind the ears, trying not to move too much with my laughter. He'd given us each our share of love, knowing Jasper and Alice well and remembering Rose and Emmett from his frequent visits to our apartment.
"Alright, I need something sweet," Jasper said, pulling himself up to his knees and then standing up. "Anyone else?" he asked, and we all agreed.
"Yo, bring some more beer in here, too, bruh," Emmett said.
"Bruh? No more 'Dog the Bounty Hunter' for you, big guy," Rose said.
"Jazz and I went as Dog and Beth one year for Halloween," Alice said with a laugh. "We just clipped some braids into his hair and got him the right costume. I stuffed my bra and put on a blond wig. It was hilarious," she continued with a grin.
"Show them the pictures, Aly," Edward said. I was still laughing and imagining their costumes, leaning over to pet MoMo down his side gently. I didn't realize that Edward was doing the same, and at one point, our hands met in the middle. We were both petting his back, so no one else noticed or could see, but when our hands met, Edward held his over mine. He linked his fingers through mine, using his thumb to continue lightly petting MoMo's back.
I was no longer paying attention to Alice as she scrolled through her phone to find the photos in an old Facebook album. My attention, though I hadn't turned to actually look, was acutely focused on the warmth of Edward's hand against mine, the smoothness as the tops of his fingers rested against the back of my hand.
Our moment was broken when Jasper walked back in with six beers in hand, holding three against each side with his arms, his hands carrying the container Alice had brought in.
He sat it down and front of us, and even MoMo perked up at the site of the cupcakes.
"Salted caramel cupcakes for you fine friends," Jasper said, handing us each an opened bottle of beer.
"These look amazing," Rose moaned, reaching for one first. Skinny bitch could pack in the sweets better than she packed those perfect boobs into her tops. But screw it, I loved my sweets, too. And I'd pretend to work out tomorrow to make up for it.
We each grabbed one and voiced our appreciation.
"These are awesome, guys," I said.
"Thank you, ma'am," Jasper smiled, pulling the bottom off of his cupcake and putting it on the top to make his own little whoopie pie out of it.
"You made these, Jasper? Oh, I might just have to get you to make our wedding cake," Rose said, and Emmett choked a bit on his cupcake.
"Wait, you guys are engaged?" Alice asked excitedly.
"No, not yet," Rose smirked, and I swear I've never seen Emmett clam up so hard.
"Well, when the time comes, I'd be happy to make it for y'all. I do a lot of cakes on the side," Jasper said.
"Jasper went to pastry school. He can cook just about anything well, but you should see what this man can do with a piping bag and some buttercream," she smiled. The cupcakes looked straight out of a bakery, so I was certain she wasn't exaggerating.
"Hey, you should go on that show 'Next Great Baker'!" Emmett said, finding his voice as he reached for a second cupcake because it was "cheat day."
"What's that?" Jasper asked, popping his last bite of cupcake into his mouth, while Emmett regaled him with an explanation of one of our other shared favorites. We watched the new season of it on TLC every summer.
The night continued like that, with fun conversation and more game playing. We hadn't even realized how late it was getting until Alice stood up declaring that they needed to head home. When I realized it was midnight, I figured Rose, Emmett, and I needed to head out, too. I'd stopped drinking a few hours ago along with Alice so that we'd both be safe to drive.
Everyone said their good-byes to Edward and each other, each of us giving MoMo our love. I gave Rose my keys and told her to go ahead and crank the car but to give me a second.
Once everyone was out and the door was shut, Edward and I stood in the foyer alone. MoMo had made his way back to his spot on the floor, tired from us keeping him awake so late.
"Bella, this was really awesome. Thank you for this," Edward smiled, reaching for my hand and threading his fingers through it. He used his other hand to run his fingers down a strand of my hair, and like always, he wrapped his finger around the end and tugged gently.
"Well, I figured after the stress of the last few days, you could use a night like this to unwind," I said quietly, feeling our hands lightly grasped.
"You really are the most amazing friend," Edward whispered, pulling me closer to him by the hand. His other hand slipped up to my neck, cradling my head and using his thumb to lightly rub across my cheek.
"I love...having you in my life," he whispered. Our eyes were boring into each other's, and my hands on instinct reached to grip his sides.
"I do, too," I replied lamely.
Edward leaned in and placed a gentle kiss on my forehead, lingering for a few seconds before moving his lips lower and placing another soft kiss on my nose. I knew, in the back of my mind, that we had all but one toe over the line, but there was no will in me to stop this.
My lips were shaking, actually quivering, at the anticipation of feeling his. I could taste his breath, a sweet mixture of cupcakes and dark beer. Just before his lips met mine, he rerouted and placed them to the left side of my mouth. Our lips weren't touching, but they were so close that I let out a deep sigh, my hands gripping his shirt, his both cradling my head, thumbs stroking my cheeks.
We were pulled from the moment at the loud blaring of a car horn, and I had no doubt that Emmett's impatient behind was the culprit.
We pulled away from each other, and before I turned, I remembered the box I'd brought in with me.
"Oh, I almost forgot, I got you something," I smiled. I'd loved the idea earlier, but now it seemed really lame.
"You got me a gift?" Edward asked.
"Well, it's for you and Mo," I shrugged.
I handed him the tall box, the lid one that had two sides pushed together to form a handle, locked in place on each side..
He opened it and pulled it out, laughing loudly when he realized what it was.
"I, uh, went to Build-a-Bear earlier and had it made. You can't imagine how uncomfortable it is to be an adult unaccompanied by a child in that place," I laughed. Edward tucked the stuffed black and white dog under his arm before reaching back in to pull out the certificate at the bottom.
"MeMe," he said with a chuckle. I'd bought a little pearl necklace with a pink ribbon to put on the stuffed dog.
"I thought you and MoMo could use a girl in your lives," I said with a smirk.
"Thank you, Bella. This is great," he said, and somehow, whether he meant it or not, he made me believe that he was a grown man genuinely happy to receive a stuffed animal.
Just before I turned to leave, he grabbed my wrist and pulled me into a tight hug. I put my arms around him and held him to me.
"But Bella," he whispered his warm breath into my ear, "we already have a girl in our lives. And she's incredible," he said. He pulled back before winking at me and opening the door.
"Will you text me when you get home so I know you made it safely?" he asked as I walked to my car. I turned back to him, smiled, and gave him a little thumbs up.
I drove home smiling the entire way, listening to Rose and Emmett bicker lightly in between laughs and smiles.
When we got home, Emmett and Rose made their way playfully back to her room, Emmett smacking her lightly on the butt just before they closed the door. Ick.
I made quick work of putting on my pajamas, brushing the pizza and beer off my breath, and climbing into bed.
I grabbed my phone charger, plugging in my phone before opening my texts.
I'm home, Mr. Cullen. Teeth brushed and in bed :)
I saw the bubbles signaling his response right away and smiled as I waited.
Sleep well, Miss Swan. I know I will, even though I now have two bed hogs in here with me ;)
I laughed before typing out a quick goodnight, falling asleep to the blissful hum of my fan and the contented smile that I was pretty sure I'd been wearing ever since Edward stepped into my life.
So true story: several years go before the New Moon movie came out, a friend convinced me to email Build-a-Bear and suggest that they produce a line of Twilight themed stuffed wolves, as we were certain Twilight fans would have loved them. I got a kind, if not a bit patronizing, response that they'd consider the suggestion.
Guess who still doesn't have her stuffed wolf.
I promise to reply to as many reviews as possible tomorrow. But it's getting late and I have to work in the morning. I wanted to get this chapter up before bed, though. I hope you all enjoy, and please know that waking up to reviews from you guys is absolutely the best way to start a day! Goodnight all!