Carlisle Cullen is a pillar of the He's a humane veterinarian/philanthropist who owns an animal hospital and shelter. He's a loving husband, a devout father, and his three sons follow in his footsteps as well as on his Harley. They're tattooed bad boys who right the wrong to protect and save. They have hearts that fall in love with the blink of an eye. Well, except for the middle one, Edward.
Disclaimer: I own nothing Twilight.
A/N: I am still blessed with my Beta, Fran. She's my Queen; my comma commando.
She's one hell of a friend.
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Chapter Sixty: Epi
Thanksgiving - Five years later
It's a beautiful, sunny day with not a cloud in the sky, the temperature is a mild sixty-nine degrees with a light breeze, and it's a day of thanks.
We have an area on the compound that hosts a large, covered outdoor patio for dinner events; Mom's idea. It's separate from the animal section.
Mom, Anne Mae, and the girls set up place settings on smaller tables for the kids, and we have a horde of mini Jaspers, Emmetts, and mes. For some damn reason, the Cullen genes are strong in all the kids.
The extended families of the club are also present. Yeah, Jake, Seth, and Garrett are fathers with wives, but they didn't stay with Alice's friends. I guess the club life wasn't for them. It's not easy to be with men like us. At any given time of the day or night, there can be an emergency, and we're on our bikes fighting the cause. We all burn with the same fire.
We also have our in-house 'Battered Spouses,' along with their children joining us. We share the meal, optimistically giving them a sense of family and hope. Dad set up a direct line to one particular social worker who handles every case. She expedites all the arrangements for home, security, and welfare for each broken family.
Today, we celebrate ...
e feast ...
We love our families.
I watch Emmett, the biggest kid in the bunch, play Piped Piper. They follow him in circles, mimicking all his movements from flapping arms to stomping feet. He yells a, 'hey-ho' and they do the same, giggling. Thirty-two little munchkins from the ages of nine to one in a single file snake around the pavilion with all eyes on them. Fourteen are Cullens.
Emmett and Rose, along with their Adam and Andrew, have a set of three-year-old twin girls, Amy and Annie. Oh, they didn't stop there. Annie Mae's magic continues with one-year-olds, Adrien and Angelina. He has three girls and three boys. Jasper and I have a bet that they go for another set.
Jasper and Alice have two-year-old boys, Alaric and Alias, who their older sisters, Abby and Ava, keep a watchful eye on like hawks. They may look like Jasper, but their actions are purely Alice. They're all business and take no prisoners.
Bella and I have another set of split twins; three-year-olds, Anthony and Arielle. Aidan holds his brother's hand as Alexi drags her sister in Emmett's parade.
And we wonder if this twin evolution will be a trickle-down effect with our children; only time will tell.
I glance over at Annie Mae with a twinkle in her eye; she dotes over all the grandchildren with Mom at her side. They're thick as thieves and defend their mini scoundrels. We second generation parents don't have a chance. Bella and I just concede and carefully pick our battles.
Mom and the girls head back and forth from the kitchen bringing out trays of traditional side dishes. Jasper and I man the meat barbeques along with Dad and Seth with veggie burgers, potatoes, and corn.
"When you have over one-hundred starving people, you can never have too much food," Mom's words echo in my head. I turn to see her smile as she nods at me reading my thoughts.
Dad and Seth finish up and place all their platters on the long, rectangle buffet table; another great idea from Mom. "If we have a separate table with the food, everyone can comfortably sit with enough room."
I watch Dad approach Mom, wrapping an arm around her waist, and hugging her close, groping her ass. He smiles at me with his thumbs up.
Okay, he's a happy man.
Three years ago, we presented our case to the Louisiana State House of Representatives. Their civil law and procedure committee open their session to us for the animal rights bill.
Dad and I worked on the speech for days on end. We were nervous, but confident that our facts and our four million signatures on passing new laws would evoke some kind of positive reaction.
I stood before the committee with my family watching on the sidelines.
"Good afternoon, Ladies and Gentlemen, my name is Dr. Edward Cullen. I'm a veterinarian, an animal lover and caregiver, and I speak for them as a representative of their rights as living, breathing beings."
"As a country, we have stood by far too long, some looking in other directions, while innocent animals have been mistreated through unnecessary cruelty because they can not speak for themselves nor defend themselves against heinous abuse."
I hold up a thick pamphlet and shake it over my head. "I have four-million signatures of Louisiana residents that want to see change. They want to see stricter laws protecting our domestic and wild animals throughout our state."
"This plea for their freedom from abuse is being presented throughout our nation. All fifty states need to seriously consider every penalty that deals with animal abuse; from leaving an animal in a hot car to inhumane testing, to mass breeding in despicable conditions, and raising animals for open fighting for entertainment purposes. It's time that we take the responsibility to make these changes to protect the innocent. We need harsher laws with heavier fines and lengthier jail sentences. If we only slap a hand, that hand will only continue to torture and mistreatment."
"This state needs a comprehensive list of all animal violators for every city to publicly have available for awareness. If you know the perpetrator, you can keep a watchful eye to prevent any violation."
"We also should consider a reward system for any individual that prevents or ceases any abuse to an animal."
"Once again, through education, we develop and mold tomorrow's young children into tomorrow's leaders. Government and civilians need to work together."
Today, we celebrate our success with all fifty states implementing animal rights laws with higher fines, penalties, and jail sentences. It's a win we don't take lightly.
We celebrate the gratitude for all the help, sweat and toil for our surroundings. This compound is a dream of a young boy's desire to right wrongs. A boy that is now a grandfather passing on his legacy.
Today, Dad retires and hands his boys the keys.
We also celebrate a woman who saved her family bringing life to a new generation.
As everyone finds their seat, Emmett scoots each child into their dining area. Dad stands and welcomes all. "I'm so glad to see everyone here; to be together to truly celebrate an amazing win."
"I'm so honored and proud to look around and say, "We did it!"
More cheers, hoots, and hollers.
"We accomplished more than we started out doing. It's mind-boggling that we expanded our rescue program. Not only do we save our furry friends, but they in return save us. All schools will have an animal awareness class teaching kindness, respect, and exchanging love."
"We have the approval for 'Animals for Seniors.' A program to relieve stress for the elderly in their homes, with volunteers bringing in kittens and puppies for them to experience and enjoy."
We shout, "About time."
"Our compound opened its doors to families from abused homes, both human and animal."
The mothers all cheer.
"And lastly, I'm stepping down and passing this to my sons."
"No, no, I'll be around. My wife does have plans to expand our swing set."
"Edward," Dad gestures to me.
"Believe me, Dad's not going anywhere."
"Um, no matter where I am or where I go, I will always involve myself with the care and protection of animals. It's in my blood; it's my family's blood; from my parents to my siblings, to our wives to our children. If we educate, teaching children at a young age to respect and care for animals, then there are no boundaries for their safety."
"It fills my heart with pride to know that my family hasn't worked in vain. That every person who travels this road with us has helped spread the word and the way. We have all fifty states with laws and penalties. And soon Europe and the rest of the world will follow."
"No animal should suffer."
"No animal should starve."
"No animal should be mistreated."
"As a united world, we give back to the true natives of this planet."
"And another one of the reasons we celebrate is that it's Annie Mae's birthday."
She turns beet red and hides behind her hands. Bella hugs her. "Oh, no fuss. No fuss."
"So, eat up. We have …
Before I can continue, I'm hit in the shoulder with a blob of mashed potatoes. I look in the direction of my attacker, and face a smirking Emmett licking his fingers. "I've wanted to do that all day."
I smile at him, as Bella taps him on the shoulder, and, as he turns, she dribbles gravy over his shirt. The surprise on his face is priceless.
Bella growls, "Don't waste food."
Emmett licks his fingers.
Annie Mae gives Emmett a death stare, and he runs screaming into the building, "I'm gonna clean up now, Annie Mae."
She quietly says, "Be thankful I adore your Rosalie."
My cell rings.
There is silence.
I answer, nod my head.
Duty calls and we run for our bikes.
Always, my first thank you is to Fran. Without her, I feel my words pale. She gives me the color.
Thank you to all the readers for giving this story a chance. I more than appreciate your time and comments.
Time to close this book and create another.
So, in a few weeks, keep a watchful eye for the new fic, 'She Rocks My World' on October 17th… It's my birthday, and I'll present all of you with my gift.
Time for recs: This list is authors.
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