My goodness it's been a challenge to get this chapter out! I'm so grateful for everyone who has waited patiently. I hope I don't disappoint.
I will be posting pictures on the Pintrest board for anyone interested in visuals. Just search: The Bunny Ranch.
Let's be friends on social media! Twitter, facebook and Instagram, lailabentz or Laila Bentz
Thank you for the constant love and support from my beta, princess07890. Go check out her stories!
I own nothing.
I didn't think it was possible to feel any closer to Edward, but, after our trip to Nantucket, I know that assumption is false. I feel closer to him than ever.
It means so much to me that he took time off from work to share something with me that is important to him. I never realized that we would bond so deeply over it.
Seeing him out on the water was almost like seeing a different person entirely. He was so carefree and happy. It was such a stark contrast to the serious, ruthless businessman I've grown to love. I got a taste of the life we could have, and I'm set on it. It won't happen immediately, but it will happen. Moving to Nantucket is too important to ignore for long.
I stand in our shared closet, which now seems to be bursting at the seams, and stare at my clothes. My mind wanders to the empty, unused closet and dressing area on the opposite side of the room and I wonder how Edward would feel if I cleaned it out, and utilized it. I don't see how he could object; there's seriously too much stuff in this one that we share.
The unused dressing area was clearly intended for a woman, with its large walk-in closet and attached dressing area. There's built in shelving and gorgeous crown molding. I honestly can't wait to redecorate it.
Choosing a yellow sundress, I change quickly, and then head to the bathroom to retrieve my earrings from the jewelry tray I keep near the sink.
When I get to the doorway of the bathroom, however, I stop short in my tracks. Edward is standing at his sink, frowning, as he inspects the spattering of grey hair at his temples. His strong, muscled shoulders flex as he reaches up to rub his beard, and he sighs when he reaches into the cabinet to grab his razor.
I make my way over, and wiggle myself between his hard body and the sink. I not so smoothly hop up to sit on the counter, spreading my legs so that I can wrap them around his thighs.
His troubled green eyes meet mine; he smiles, but it doesn't quite reach his eyes. He slides his large, masculine hands along my thighs until they creep under my dress, but I don't move. I just let him feel me. His hands find purchase on my behind, but the touch isn't sexual. Instead, he leans into me, resting his head on my shoulder. I wrap my arms around his shoulders, and just hold him for a moment, pressing a soft kiss to the side of his jaw.
It saddens me that he still worries about our age difference at times. It's not a constant issue and it really is a small one in the grand scheme of things, but I still want to do everything in my power to reassure him.
I reach up, and gently push his shoulders to prompt him to stand up, and step back. I look directly into his gorgeous green eyes as I clumsily slide off of the counter, but I want his attention. I need him to be one hundred percent focused on me if I'm to make the point I hope to make.
He follows me easily as I take his hand, and lead him toward our closet. There's a full length mirror in there, and I plan to use it in order to make my point. I stop us when we are standing in front of the mirror, and turn so that I'm standing with my back is against his front. He's at least a foot taller than me, so, barefoot, he's easily able to see over my head.
I don't say anything, but my intention is clear. I want him to see how good we look together. I want him to see how good we are together. After today, I never want him to worry about how we look together ever again.
He catches my eye in the mirror, and I hold his gaze steady. I fight my natural urge to squirm, and stand firm until he finally looks beyond my eyes to the image of us together. I see when he, at last, looks at himself. His tall, strong, masculine form is a dominant presence, and a stark contrast to my petite, feminine one.
He places his hands on my waist, never looking away from the image in the mirror. He skims his hands down my hips, and fists the fabric of my dress, exposing my thighs. I press myself harder against his body, because the image of him watching himself touch me is an incredible turn on.
Bunching the dress up, he pulls it over my head, and then discards it haphazardly on the floor; his glowing green eyes finding his hands in the mirror once again. He takes his time caressing every inch of my exposed skin, and, when he smirks that cocky smirk that I love so much at himself, I know that my plan has worked.
He cups my breasts in his hands, and I rub my thighs together at the sight of how they overflow from his large hands. Squeezing gently, he locks eyes with me in the mirror as he drags his tongue along the length of my neck. A loud moan escapes me as I reach up to grip his hair, grinding my butt against him. He's rock hard against my lower back, and I'm so thankful when he walks us back the few steps toward the bench.
He pulls off his underwear as he sits down, and bites my butt cheek as he peels my underwear off. I yelp at the sudden sting, and giggle at his playfulness as he pulls me to sit on his lap, my back to his front. I spread my legs wide, because I want him to see how wet I am for him.
"Jesus, fuck." Is all he says as he reaches around me, and drags his long, elegant fingers through my dripping folds. There's something so naughty about watching ourselves through the mirror, but in the best possible way.
I curl my right leg back and then my left as he holds me steady so that I'm straddling him in reverse. I grab hold of his manhood, and position myself above him. I catch his eyes in the mirror as I slowly sink down onto his length. I let my head fall back onto his shoulder once he's fully seated within me, because the sensation, combined with the added stimulation of watching ourselves, is just completely overwhelming.
He groans when I swivel my hips, and tightens his grip on my hip when I finally speak, "Do you see? Do you see how perfect we are together? Please don't doubt us. It hurts me when you do."
He closes his eyes, but places a gentle kiss to my temple, "I'm sorry, my love. Never again."
It's all I need. I trust him implicitly; if he says never again, it's never again.
I brace my hands on his thighs, and really start to move. It's an odd sensation, but completely amazing. He's touching places inside of me that have never been stimulated before, and it feels amazing. It's erotic and sexy, but I can tell when we've had enough of the kink because he effortlessly shifts me until I'm facing him with my legs wrapped around his back. He kisses me deeply as he brings me to orgasm, and it isn't long until he follows.
He holds me tightly, and I can feel his apology in the way that he holds me.
"For the record, I find this incredibly sexy," I say as I brush my fingers through the hair at his temple.
"Yeah?" For the first time, he looks like he actually believes me, causing my heart to soar. I nod my confirmation, fearing that using my words will make me emotional. Instead, I merely hold him tighter. I love this man with everything inside of me, and I'm glad that he finally believes it.
"I can't wait to be your wife."
"I can't wait to be your husband."
It's such a perfectly cheesy moment, and I hate to break it, but I know that he has to get to work, and I have errands to run before Liz picks me up to finish wedding stuff. With the wedding a little over a week away, I'm even more stressed than ever.
When Thursday rolls around, I almost see work as a refuge from wedding planning. Don't get me wrong, I'm more than excited for the wedding; I'm just over the planning.
I'm waiting at the bar for one of my drink orders when Jess saddles up beside me. "Who's that guy?"
I look over at her, meeting her bright blue eyes. They are filled with concern and a hint of disgust.
"That guy that's been staring at you all night." Her gaze flicks over toward a man sitting at a table in the section adjacent to mine. His piercing grey eyes lock with mine, and a chill rips up my spine. I look away quickly, swallowing back the terror that has seized me. I don't know why I get so freaked out, but my natural flight or fight response kicks in immediately.
Jess's eyes soften as she reaches for my hand. "I know, right? He's been creeping me out all night. I'm surprised you haven't noticed him."
I sneak another glance over at the dark haired man, and catch him, yet again, staring at me. Pulling my gaze from the strange man, I think fleetingly about reporting it to our security team, but dismiss the idea. People stare at us all the time, there's nothing they can do about it. It's the nature of the business we're in. I take a few deep breaths to recollect myself, and head back to my section, drinks in hand.
The rest of the night goes smoothly, and, before I know it, the strange man is forgotten, allowing me to focus on my customers. I get a little spooked when the girls and I walk out to our waiting car, but, other than that, everything is fine.
Edward is asleep when I get home, which is nothing new, considering how late it is by the time I close out my section and check in my costume. I quickly go through my nightly routine, and then move Edward's laptop from the bed, and put his glasses on the bedside table. I know that he's fallen asleep waiting up for me, and that simple fact touches my heart. It also makes me feel terrible, knowing that he has to be at work early in the morning.
Unfortunately, I'm still asleep when he leaves for work, so I wake up to not only an empty bed, but also an empty house. I lay in bed for a few minutes, still groggy from my crappy night's sleep, and decide that I can't start my day without at least hearing his voice. He answers on the first ring,
His voice is so tender; it's exactly what I needed to hear.
"Hey." I answer, barely able to keep my emotions in check.
"Hey, yourself. What are you doing up so early?"
"I missed you."
"Oh, baby. I miss you, too."
I can't help it; I start crying.
"What's wrong, sweetheart?"
"I don't know," I sniffle. "I'm just emotional. Get back to work. I just wanted to hear your voice."
"Why don't you come have lunch with me?"
"I wish I could, but I've got errands that I can't put off any longer, and I picked up Alice's shift tonight so she could visit her mom in Mississippi, remember?"
"That's right, I remember. Call me when you get to the club?"
"I will. I love you."
"I love you, too."
It's crazy how just hearing his voice is all I need to turn my mood around. I spend the rest of the morning putting finishing touches on my closet project.
As expected, Edward was more that supportive of me fixing up the empty closet and dressing room. I managed to do it all myself with fantastic pieces that I picked up from Homegoods, a discount home furnishings store in our area.
It's soft and feminine; decorated in creams with a touch of gold and cheetah print. I found a beautiful, ornate, full length mirror and a gorgeous matching vanity. It's very luxurious, and I can't wait to move all of my makeup and clothes in. That'll have to wait until after the wedding, however. We're just too busy right now. Well, the makeup is what I moved this morning. I'm too used to getting ready at a vanity at work to let my own go unused. It's definitely my guilty pleasure.
When I get to work, I call my love, as promised, and manage to have a sweet conversation as I apply my makeup. When it's time to blow-dry my hair, however, I know that it's time to hang up.
We are slow again, which is rough on our tips, and, honestly, makes the night drag on. I much prefer when it's busy.
I make my way over to the gentlemen that were just seated in my section, and startle when I recognize the dark haired man. The hair on the back of my neck rises, and a shiver runs down my spine, but I take a few deep breaths to control my reaction.
"Good evening, gentlemen, I'm Bunny Isabella, and I will be taking care of you this evening. May I please see your Playboy keys?"
I plaster a fake smile on my face, and try my best to ignore the way his eyes hungrily slide down my body. When those piercing grey eyes meet mine again, he smoothly slides the sleek black card from his designer wallet. The self-satisfied smirk on his face annoys me, but I retain my pleasant smile.
"Thank you, Mr. Valkov. What will you be drinking this evening?"
"I'll have a Manhattan, and my business associate will have a Heineken."
Cockiness radiates off of him, and his lips turn up into a smirk when I fumble with my order pad. I hate that he knows that he makes me uncomfortable. But he does.
Jess is watching us; when I get to the bar to wait for my order, she makes a face. "Eww. Creepo is back."
I nod my head, not bothering to look back in his direction. There's no need since I can feel his sleazy eyes on me as I perch at the bar. I suddenly feel so exposed and cheap in this uniform. I fight back the threatening tears, and the urge to quit on the spot. I refuse to let this man get the best of me. Instead, I take him his drink order, and do my best to ignore the way his eyes follow my every move.
By the time my lunch break rolls around, my nerves are frazzled. Mr. Valkov is still going strong in my section, and I don't know how much more I can take. I call Edward, and ask him to come and wait for me until I get off. I know that it's inconsiderate, because he has a meeting in the morning, but I'm genuinely afraid. I reported him to our security staff, but, like I thought, there is nothing that they can do since he is a paying customer who hasn't technically done anything wrong. Giving me the creeps isn't exactly just reason to ask someone to leave an establishment.
The problem is that I know that I've seen him before. I think that's what is messing with my mind. Nevertheless, I need to put on my big girl panties, so to speak, and finish my shift with my head held high.
Thankfully, it's only about forty-five minutes until Edward gets here. Again, I feel bad when I see him pull out his laptop as he settles into one of the leather chairs, but, at the same time, my unease completely dissipates. His presence alone makes me feel safe. He catches my eye, and winks at me as Maggie finishes taking his drink order.
With a smile, and a much lighter heart, I go back to taking care of my tables.
"Did you know that you walk past a murderer nine times throughout your life?" startled, I look up at Mr. Valkov, not only taken aback by what he said, but also by the way he used trivia to deliver the information. "Just a bit of trivia for you." He smirks at my obvious discomfort; it's at this point that I know that something isn't right.
"Last call, Mr. Valkov. The bar stops serving in ten minutes."
"I think I've had enough. Tell me, Bunny Isabella, do you always have your guard dog around?" He nods his head in the direction where Edward is sitting. I look over my shoulder and notice that those green eyes that I love so much are trained on Mr. Valkov.
I turn my attention back to the creep, but I don't answer. Instead, stare at him with pure defiance shining in my eyes.
"You and I both know that he's not around one hundred percent of the time. Good evening, Isabella. Until we meet again."
He dips his head, and confidently strides out of the club. I hate that I have no reason to ask the club to blacklist him. He never broke any rules, he never touched me, and he never threatened me. But I've honestly never felt so threatened in my entire life.
He has to be connected to Aro. There's no other way to explain it. Especially adding in the fact that he looks so familiar.
Edward is watching me as I close out my section. His beautiful, bloodshot green eyes are filled with concern, not to mention exhaustion. Again, I feel terrible for making him spend his evening here when I know that he's preparing for an important meeting. It's not like my crazy customer can snatch me from the secure parking lot. I don't know what I was thinking.
Edward waits for me to cash out, and turn in my costume. He looks delicious leaning against the wall when I emerge from the double doors. I slide my arms around his middle, and hug him tightly as I approach.
"I'm sorry I ruined your night. I'm such a pain in the butt. I don't know why I'm being such a baby about this."
"Nonsense. If you need me, I'm here. No questions asked. I love you, Bella. Your happiness and security come first. Always. Besides that, you're my pain in the ass."
He winks with his last statement, and I giggle, burying my face in his chest to let his love surround me for a moment.
"Besides, I think there's something very off about him. I have my private investigators working on it as we speak."
The fact that Edward admits that he thinks there's something suspicious about the man, I instantly feel better about my reaction. Justified even.
When I've calmed down, I follow him to the car, and kiss his mouth when he opens the door for me. Such a gentleman.
The following Wednesday afternoon, I decide to take advantage of my only day off until the wedding, and surprise Edward at work. I call our car service, and arrange to have them take me by Edward's favorite deli, and then drop me off at his building.
I send a text to Liz to let her in on my change of plans, and become concerned when she doesn't answer. No matter what she's doing, Liz always answers. Even if just to say that's she's busy, and will call later.
I knock on the privacy glass divider in order to alert the driver that we've passed our destination, but I don't get a response. My concern turns to sheer panic when we pull up to a red brick building that I don't recognize.
I'm in full fight or flight mode, and all I can think is that I'm somehow being abducted, and that I'll never see Edward again. When the car stops and the driver gets out to open my door, I snap at him.
"This isn't where I asked you to take me."
"I'm sorry, Ms. Swan, but I'm under strict orders by Mr. Cullen to bring you to this location. If you have any questions, you can take it up with him."
I pull my phone out of my bag, and just as I'm about to hit send, Alice emerges from the building. I must look completely flustered, because she's quick to dismiss the driver.
"Thank you, I've got her from here."
She takes my hand, and pulls me from the car, but not without resistance from me. I don't know if it's the creepy guy that I swear is still following me around, or the fact that Aro is still at large, but I resist.
"What is going on here, Alice?"
She rolls her big blue eyes, and tosses her long dark hair over her shoulder before tugging on my hand. "Stop being so dramatic, Bella. C'mon."
I take a deep breath, but follow my friend. Logically, I know that I'm safe with her, but I can't help the unease I've felt lately.
Of course, I feel absolutely awful when I walk through the doors right into a surprise bridal shower. The large, open room is elegantly decorated in creams, champagne, and, of course, gold. There's a large buffet set up and several small round tables.
Liz greets me with a motherly hug, and it dawns on me why she was so adamant that I wear the champagne colored dress that I wore for our weekly family dinner a few weeks ago. It matches the decor perfectly.
I look around to all of my close friends and co-workers, and realize that I do have a family. Between Edward and his family and everyone here today, I am loved.
My emotions get the best of me once again, and I cry like a baby.
"Oh sweetheart, don't cry! You'll mess up your makeup. This is a happy occasion. Let's celebrate!" I wrap my arms around her, and hope that she can feel my love and gratitude for her through my embrace.
Liz takes me by the hand, and leads me to the buffet table. Esme and Carmen are there, and they both embrace me as well.
"Who's at the club?" There are so many Bunnies here that it's hard to imagine that there are enough girls to work tonight.
Carmen winks at me as she answers, "Don't you worry about it, B. We've got it covered."
"Thank you so much for being here. It means the world to me."
Esme smiles softly as she kisses my cheek. "We wouldn't be anywhere else for our sister."
We eat a delicious lunch of prime rib with garlic mashed potatoes and asparagus, an unhealthy amount of cheesecake, and drink entirely too much champagne. Everyone oohs and awes at the beautiful lingerie I receive when we sit down to open gifts, and I have to say that for having such a terrible last couple of weeks, my future has definitely taken a turn for the better.
Alice makes sure to take plenty of pictures, and I even send a few to Edward, who especially loves the sneak peaks of the satin and lace, naughty man. I almost hate for the wonderful day to end, but, at the same time, I'm grateful because that means that we're one day closer to the big day.
In four short days, I will be Mrs. Edward Cullen.
So, we have finally made it to the wedding! Are you excited for it? They deserve a little happiness before the shit hits the fan, yeah? What do we think of Mr. Valkov? What do you think he's up to?
I can't wait to hear your thoughts!
Lots of love, Laila xx