Disclaimer: None of this is mine, nor will it ever be (sigh). I like to play with the characters that Stephenie Meyers created and make them do pervy things or become angels with a bad attitude.

I'm thinking I'm going to stay with Bella for the next chapter. Let's just say, it's going to be a big chapter …

Chapter Thirty-One

BPOV

I woke up and I was sore. Muscles that hadn't been used were tight and my hips were not liking me, but I felt at peace. Behind me, Edward was curled around me, tracing my back. "What are you doing?" I asked, my voice rough and raw.

"Tracing your ribs," he said. "And drawing on your back. Your skin is flawless, Bella. Like alabaster." I blushed and he chuckled. "I'll never tire of touching you, Bella." I turned my head, smiling at him. He was beauty and power and protection, wrapped up in a sexy package with a crooked smile, jade-colored eyes, bronze hair, tattooed skin and charcoal wings. "God, you floor me with how beautiful you are."

"You're delusional," I snorted, getting up and realizing that I was still naked. "Um …"

Edward stood up and he was very much naked. He cupped my face with his hands. "Bella, you are the most beautiful woman in the world. I'm honored that you shared yourself with me, giving me your virtue …"

"You and I both know that my virtue is long gone," I said flatly.

"No, beautiful," he frowned. "What was taken from you was your innocence by those assholes who raped you. You saved your virtue and gave it freely, to me. Our making love was our choice, our decision. Yes, I was hesitant at first, but when all was said and done, we shared something so sacred and so beautiful, that I'll cherish it forever." He gathered me in his arms, holding me close and tucking me against his body with his wings. "Now, why don't we take a shower? Head back home?"

"I don't want to go back," I chuckled. "It was so quiet here. And I felt …"

"Safe," he finished for me. I nodded, pouting deeply. "You'll get that back. I promise you, pretty Bella. For now, I just want to hold you and trace some more nonsensical designs on your skin."

"Maybe a tattoo?" I whispered.

"You want one?" he asked. My eyes widened as I nodded fervently. "Bad ass! What?"

"Wings," I cried. "Your wings protect me. I want my own, to, um, protect me. I know it's stupid …"

"Not stupid, Bella. Definitely not," he said. "Let's take a shower and then we can go to a friend of mine who lives in Seattle."

"Another angel?" I asked.

"He's a cherub," Edward chuckled. "Total baby face and so cute, but covered, head-to-toe in tats. Does excellent work. He gave me my wings, but yours will be far more feminine. And he's a total bad ass when it comes to fighting minions. He'll probably want in on stopping Riley."

I snorted. He released me, calling his friend and I went to the bathroom. Edward joined me in the shower and took his time, washing my hair and caressing my skin, whispering his undying love for me. Our shower was not sexual, but still sensual. I was growing more comfortable with Edward's hands on my body and less wary that he'd hurt me like the monsters from my past. I'd probably always be hesitant when it came to having sex, making love, but I knew that Edward would always treat me with respect, with reverence and show me how much he loved me.

After a delicious breakfast, Edward drove us to a funky tattoo parlor. I was introduced to Alec, the baby-faced cherub, who would be tattooing me. He reminded me of Edward, being a little rough around the edges, but very kind, too. I was brought back to a private room and Alec told me to trust him when it came to my tattoo. I did. I knew that whatever he created, it would be beautiful. I spent the day sitting in the chair, getting wings tattooed to my back and down the sides of my hips. When Alec was done with one side, Edward healed them for me so I didn't need to deal with the salve and pain of the healing ink. At the base of my neck, Alec added a special surprise: a tattoo with my initials, along with Edward's. Once that was healed, Edward pressed a reverent kiss there. He paid for my ink, hugging Alec. They spoke quietly, in an ancient dialect that I didn't recognize and Alec frowned, but nodded.

"You ready to head home?" Edward asked.

"Is Alec going to help?" I replied. Edward nodded, kissing my temple. "Why was he frowning?"

"He was worried about leaving his mate, a human male, unattended. He doesn't want his mate to be collateral damage. But, Alec is brutal with a broad sword, able to stop the minions' attacks upon the legion," Edward explained. "He's going to come. After meeting you, he wants to help. He says your heart is one of the purest ones he's ever met."

I blushed, ducking my head. Edward reached over, threading our fingers together and kissing my knuckles. We drove back to Forks, stopping at the police station before heading to the house. Charlie took us to the diner, so happy that we'd stopped by. He couldn't stay because there was an accident involving one of the logging trucks. Edward and I finished our meals before driving back to his house. Alice and Esme were there, waiting for me and hugged me excitedly when I told them that I'd gotten the position at the school district in Bellevue. With a knowing grin, Esme pulled me aside, ducking us into the bedroom. "Are you okay?" she asked.

I blushed, knowing why she was asking. "I am. I feel more centered. He gave me what I should have had from the beginning, Esme," I sniffled. "I'm grateful for him, for his patience and his freely given love …"

"Have you said it back?" she pressed. I opened my mouth, clamping it shut and shaking my head. I had showed him, but saying it was still too much and instilled so much fear in me. Would he change? Would I? Esme hugged me and kissed my forehead. "I'm certain he knows. You show him with your care, your gift of your body and by trusting him."

"You probably think I'm a selfish bitch by always taking from him," I pouted.

"No, Bella. I don't. I think you were the unknowing victim of an abhorrent crime, by both the social workers and by God. We should have been there for you," she whispered. "But, please know that we all love you. You've brought back Edward and Charles, erm, Charlie. You've united the legion. We would rather die than have anything happen to you." She smiled, but she blinked up, her eyes glazed over.

"Esme?"

She blinked again, her eyes clearing. "It's nothing, sweetheart. I thought I saw something," she replied.

"Saw? You're in my bedroom. Our bedroom. You were staring at the bathroom door," I said, arching a brow.

"I have the gift of foresight, as does Alice, but it's not terribly accurate. We get feelings or see glimpses of what is to happen," Esme explained, hugging me tenderly. "What I saw was a glimpse of someone, but it was very hazy. You needn't worry about it. If it's something troublesome, I'll get more pictures or more hints."

"Are you sure?" I questioned. "Could it be Riley screwing with you?"

"He doesn't have that power," Esme said, nodding abruptly.

"But, his powers have been changing. Remember my ex-boss/ex-landlady? She was under his control but didn't have the black eyes like Edward described. She looked normal, a little cold but she looked like Rosalie," I shrugged. "Haven't your powers gotten stronger as time went by?" Esme pursed her lips but didn't respond. She hugged me and said if I wanted to talk, that she'd be there for me. She scurried out of the bedroom and I saw her almost sprint to the back patio, spreading her wings and disappearing immediately.

Edward came inside, his brows furrowed. "She shot out of here like a bat out of hell," he chuckled. He walked over to me, rubbing his hands on my arms. "What is it?"

"She had a vision or whatever she has," I said. "But, she blew it off like it was nothing. Then, I questioned her about could Riley/Lucifer's powers being changing? I don't know. I'm confused." He sighed, wrapping his arms around my body.

"I think we see his powers growing, becoming less noticeable because he's using Riley's body and his mind," Edward said. "Which means, that we need to stay on top of things, be extra vigilant with your protection and the livelihood of the people of Forks, Port Angeles. I fear that everything is going to come down on their heads, or that I may lose you."

I felt a knot in my stomach, wrapping my arms around his belly. "I can't lose you, Edward. I just can't," I whispered. He sighed, kissing my forehead and murmured his love for me. Normally, it calmed me, but the knot tightened and I felt even more ill at ease.

xx OOTD xx

The rest of our spring break, Edward and I looked at homes near the school where I would be teaching in the fall. When we weren't doing that, we planned the rest of the school year. All too soon, we were getting ready to head back for the final eight weeks of school. It was a sprint to the finish and it couldn't come fast enough.

I was never more grateful to have Edward next door to me, because the kids were crazy. It was like they forgot how to be students over the break. No matter how hard I tried, their behavior was atrocious. I never sent so many kids to the office because of behavior issues. Edward had similar issues, but he used his angelic voodoo on them and they turned into little angels, pun intended, when he was done with them.

While our time at work was stressful, at home, when we were alone, we made love as often as we could. Edward was such a passionate lover and having him inside me was more comforting. I felt whole. I felt protected. I felt like I finally belonged and I was never happier. I still had yet to tell Edward those three words, but I showed him as often as I could, but I was still terrified that something would happen, where one of us would change and I'd be alone, lost and broken, once again.

On top of my relationship with Edward growing, I was getting closer with Charlie. I couldn't call him dad because he was still technically physically younger than me. He'd retained his human body, but had the memories, powers and wings of his predecessor. According to Alice and Esme, his looks were pretty much the same, except for the bump on the nose, which Charlie got from being hit in the face with a baseball during gym class when he was in sixth grade. Despite his appearance, Charlie moved with a quiet confidence and was fiercely protective of me, which made my heart swell, knowing that I finally had a family member, a father.

I was no longer alone in this world.

I had a father, a man who adored me, and was close friends with Alice, Esme and Seth. Carlisle, however, seemed to respectfully keep his distance, knowing that I was still somewhat upset at him for how he handled the news of my parentage. I had forgiven him, but it would be a long time before I trusted him, if ever.

The morning of the last day of school, it was field day. It was every students' favorite day, but dreaded by the teachers. Despite Edward's insistence that we'd be paired up together, we were separated by Mrs. Cope. Edward was going to be working with the bounce houses with the rest of the male faculty. I was going to be working with Jessica and Lauren, monitoring the kickball field.

"Bella, go out and watch the outfield," Lauren said, checking her cell phone.

"I'd prefer to stay close to the building," I retorted. "I fell the other day, spraining my ankle." I lied because I didn't want to be so close to the woods behind the school.

"Bells, I got a pedicure and it's disgusting out there," Jessica pouted. "I'm not wearing sneakers. You're prepared, wearing sneakers." I wrinkled my nose, trudging out into the outfield. The kids came out and began playing. The kindergartners, first graders and half of the second graders played kickball, before we went in for lunch. The PTO handled the kids for lunch while Mrs. Cope and Ms. Whittier provided a catered meal for the staff. It wasn't too fancy, but it was nice to have a meal provided for us. Edward and I sat together, with the PE teachers and the first-grade teachers.

After lunch, Edward pulled me into my empty classroom, kissing me sweetly. "I've missed you today," he smiled.

"Me, too," I blushed. "How are the bounce houses?"

"I hate feet," he grumbled. "They're so gross and those kids are running around in those jumpy houses barefoot. Blech." He shuddered and stuck out his tongue, completely disgusted. "Anyhow, I wanted to kiss you because I missed you." I giggled, tugging on his polo shirt and brushing my lips with his. "Hmmmmm, I love you, Miss Swan." I pecked his lips three times and stepped back as the bell rang. He made a face.

"More feet?" I giggled.

"I'm almost tempted to pay Lauren or Jessica to trade with me. I'd rather be playing kickball with you," he snorted. "I'll see you after work. We'll finish packing up your room. Seth is renting a pickup truck."

"Have you talked to Angela?" I asked.

"She's coming next week to pack up her stuff," he frowned. "Too bad she isn't coming back."

"I'm bummed, too. But, her mom is not getting better so she decided to stay with her," I shrugged. "Plus, she said that despite being on FMLA, she was let go, as well."

"Kick a person while they're down," Edward grumbled. He sighed, grabbing his sunglasses which were perched in his hair. He put them on his face and kissed me again.

We went outside and he went back to the bounce houses while I went back to referee the kickball games. Lauren and Jessica had already plopped down on the benches near the school, cackling over some shit on their cell phones. Grumbling, I trudged my way out into the field, tugging down my sunglasses and leaning forward on my knees. The older kids started to clamber out I knew that it wouldn't be as hands-on as with the little ones. Toward the end of the day, one of the fifth-grade boys had sent the ball flying past the kids in the outfield and into the woods.

Crap.

"Miss Swan, we can't go in there. Can you get it for us?" asked one of the girls. "Mrs. Cope said that us kids can't go beyond the tree line."

I stood up, walking toward the edge of the field, where the woods began. I saw the ball, nestled under a fallen tree. I walked into the woods and pulled the ball out. I tossed it back to the girl by the edge of the forest. She chirped her thanks and darted back to the game. I yelped when I felt someone's hand come across my mouth and grab my waist.

No! No! NO!

"Don't move," said a deep voice, filled with anger and maliciousness. I closed my eyes, tears falling from my eyes. His hands loosened and he pushed me away. I fell on my knees and catching myself with my hands, looking over my shoulder. "RUN! You have to get away!"

I turned around and saw a bear of a man, wearing all black and his eyes were clear and blue, filled with sadness and regret. I started to scramble up, but my foot gave way. Within a blink of an eye they darkened, becoming completely black. He snarled, grabbing me and I screamed as we floated away, like a wisp of air. When we reformed, I couldn't tell where I was, but it was dark, hot and smelled like sulfur.

In the distance, I saw a figure stroll toward us. I recognized him immediately. Riley approached us and he was not as I remembered. He was more evil, just wearing the shell of the human who'd taken so much from me. "Excellent work, Emmett. Put her in the cage. We have much to discuss. We need to lure her to the darkness." Riley glared at me, giving me a sadistic grin.

Emmett tossed me into a cave, locking me in with some sort of electric stones, creating a barrier, preventing me from leaving. I started crying, curling up into a tiny ball. His feet started walking away, but he stopped. Crouching down, Emmett looked at me and his blue eyes were back. "I'm sorry, Bella. I'm trying to fight this."

"You know my name?" I whispered, shaking in my cage.

"I do. I'm going to get you out of this. I swear," he said. His eyes darkened, but cleared. He gripped the rocks and I saw rubble crumble. "His hold is too strong. If anything, I'll try to get to Edward … please, trust me."

"I have no other choice," I cried, curling up into a tiny ball. "If … if you see Edward, please tell him that I love him."

"You're going to say that yourself," he said before he disappeared completely and turning on his heel, stomping back toward where Riley was waiting for him.

Edward, please … please, save me. I love you, I thought over and over again. "I love you, Edward. I need you," I sobbed until my body just gave out. The darkness was welcomed, but I dreamt of my Edward and the love we shared. I love you.

A/N: Okay, I want to smack Lauren and Jessica, the lazy cows that they are. It's their fault that Bella's in this situation. We're going to hear from Edward next chapter and the legion is going to prepare for battle. But, Emmett is fighting the darkness. He disagrees with everything that he's been pulled into.

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