A/N (July 9th, 2009): Though this story has been complete for some time now, I just wanted to add in this note to say thank you to all you awesome people who have been adding Sleeping to Dream onto your favourite lists and continue to send me reviews and comments. I love that just because this story is finished, doesn't mean people stop reading it (which I think I thought would happen!)
I also wanted to mention that Sleeping to Dream has been nominated for an Indie Twilight Fiction Award! I'm so flattered and happy and surprised and I would be even MORE of all those things if you guys deem this story worthy of actually heading over and voting for it. It's nominated for Best Alternate Universe Complete and please, I would be so happy if you guys would go over and support this story. I believe voting starts sometime today, so go check out www. theindietwificawards (dot) com. Additionally, there are so many other amazing and underappreciated stories over there, check 'em out and support the indies!
And so this is it. The final chapter of Sleeping to Dream, which also managed to be the longest of my story. Without further ado...here it is. Enjoy :)
Chapter Twenty-Five This Magic
" The glass room where they kept me in the beginning was apparently a genius idea had by Nathaniel. The Volturi's enemy base was getting larger, but also, more powerful. When the room was built, I had not yet been changed into a hybrid. The room had never been meant for me.
"But, by whatever coincidence, they never got a chance to try it out on anyone like me. Not before my arrival. Aro wasn't even sure it would work. But then, there I was. I had just killed Nathaniel and none of his most powerful vampires could harm me. It was his last ditch effort to keep me as his own—and to take a chance on the un-tested room. Aro may have tricked me into that glass room but I tricked my way out. I was locked it there for days without any food. Of course, to tease me, Aro would throw in human food--which, as you all know, takes like crap. Even to me, no longer a hybrid. Eventually, when I was weak and could barely move, Aro put in a human, a woman. I resisted her for about a day. And then, I caved. I knew I had to eat. But I also realized I could use this to my advantage. So instead of showing my defeat, I showed Aro what I knew would shock him. I showed him what I knew he wanted me to be. When you must have seen me, Carlisle, I was ripping into the woman. I was eating, yes. I was so hungry and her blood--it tasted so good. I almost couldn't stop-" Bella gulped some air quickly, remembering the feeling of almost losing control.
"But you didn't," added Edward quietly, squeezing her hand.
"We've all been there, Bella," Jasper spoke from his seat beside Alice on the white couch across from its double—the couch she and Edward shared. Bella smiled weakly.
"As a newborn, Bella, I'm shocked you were able to stop," put in Carlisle from his seat beside Esme on a nearby love-seat. Close by, Emmett sat on the floor in front of Rosalie, who perched on an elegant chaise lounge.
"I was shocked too. I mean, I was putting on a show. I knew Aro would be somewhere, watching each of my actions carefully and I wanted to look out of control and savage. That's kind of what I was going for. But I didn't ever think it would be that easy. I knew I'd need more control the next time. Also, I had no idea Carlisle saw any of that—I was so wrapped up in my hunger. Maybe things would have been different, had I seen you. Maybe they wouldn't have. I don't know," Bella paused for a moment, looking at Carlisle sadly. Could lives have been spared had she seen Carlisle that day?
Carlisle smiled back, his eyes encouraging.
"How much longer did they keep you in the glass room?" he asked.
"A few weeks, I think. The day Edward , Jasper and Emmett came to get me, I must have already fully convinced Aro I was the savage animal who had completely forgotten Bella Swan. The day they let me out of the glass room was a day that required great control from me. I realized I couldn't just step out and zap them all—because I still really had no idea what I could do. Or even really, how to do it. I realized I could wind up back in that room very quickly, if I wasn't careful. So I waited. And then, Aro finally decided it was time to test me. He put me in the round room with some of his guinea pigs. At first, I couldn't do anything. I couldn't get my powers to work. Aro was angry—he was wondering if this had all been for nothing. He was also worried...I learned later, through his thoughts, that they had something serious to deal with. An entire colony of newborns they wanted to take out. These newborns, headed by a bunch of Aro's old rivals, were looking to overthrow the Volturi. They wanted to change the rules, they thought that humans should know about vampires—and fear them rightly and they were sick of answering to the Volturi. Aro had been planning on having me to take them all out. He thought I was capable of that. But, as he tested me, I was proving to be quite a disappointment.
"Or so I was leading him to believe. But, usually after I could smell the sun-rising, Aro would leave me alone for a few hours, usually not bothering to transport me back to the glass room. He was past thinking I could possibly be a threat to him. But as I sat alone in the dark, I practiced. I could read their thoughts, anyone passing by the round room. I could hear them. And after a few more days, I figured out how to manipulate emotions. When I had that mastered, I was able to have a guard come check on me. I needed him to practice on—I needed to know what I was capable of, without alerting Aro. Turns out, I can do quite a bit," Bella allowed herself a small smile.
"Carlisle, you saw how, as a hybrid, I seemed to acquire Jasper's powers, and Edward's. Well, it seems that I can acquire any power that is used on me. I realized this had to be true when I attempted to use Jane's power on that guard. Just like I witnessed when Jane used her power on Edward, the guard withered on the floor in agony. I also learned how to control my powers. There was a reason my powers hadn't been working when I had been trying to use them on Aro's demand—I was frightened and unfocussed. As I experimented in secret, I realized that the more I focused on—" Bella hesitated slightly, glancing quickly at Edward, "—on the people I wanted to protect, the easier it was to use my powers. And so, I started to think of you guys, and of Charlie, Renee and Jacob. It become easier the more I practiced. I had a lot to figure out, though. Many of Aro's vampires had used their powers on me…which meant that I possessed powers that I wasn't even aware of. It proved dangerous. "
"Extremely," nodded Carlisle, his eyes dark.
"When one of the guards accidently touched me as he led me back to the glass room one day, I saw everything he had ever thought. I realized quickly, I had inherited Aro's gift," Bella paused a moment as she watched Emmett's eyes widen.
"That means….when we all hugged you—"
Bella nodded solemnly.
"I know all your dirty secrets, Emmett," she replied. She could feel, rather than see everyone is the room tense up, probably wishing they had been warned before they had hugged for hours earlier. Edward's surprise was the strongest, a look of confusion in his eyes.
"I had to learn how to control everything, too. Or I may have gone crazy, with so much swirling around in my head. You're all safe. Yes, I touched you all, but I've learned to "see" only when I allow myself."
"Remarkable. The control!" muttered Carlisle.
"Can you do this with all your powers?" asked Alice eagerly. "Like with Edwards? Can you turn off everyone's thoughts?"
"I can. That one takes more conscious effort to control, as it's something that is going on all the time," Bella glanced at Edward, looking almost apologetic. Edward laughed lightly and brought her hand to his lips, kissing her palm gently.
"Don't look at me like that. Maybe you can teach me something new, although I do plan on being next to you for a very, very long time. So I think I will have a new world of silence to get used to," he smiled.
"Bella? What did you do with that guard? The one you had used Jane's power on?" asked Rosalie, speaking for the first time, her lips pursed thoughtfully.
Bella shifted uncomfortably.
" I—I ended up killing him," she replied softly.
"You had to," spoke Edward vehemently. "Don't feel bad for what you had to do, Bella. These vampires had no regard for what happened to you."
"I didn't kill him right away. In fact, I didn't ever want to kill him. At first, after I had used Jane's power on him, I knew I couldn't let him go, obviously. Aro couldn't yet know that I could use my powers. So I used Chase's power. Remember that Chase can freeze limbs? Cause immobility? The guard couldn't leave, couldn't run away. But I knew that would only do for so long before Aro came back. So I experimented on him. I realized he might be the only chance I got to practice before I had to just…attack. It was on that guard that I realized I could kill without touching. I didn't mean to—I didn't know what was happening. I just, he was making all this noise and I'd been focusing on silencing him when suddenly, he flew across the room, hit the opposite wall hard and basically…for lack of a better description…blew up. There was some fire and some smoke and he was gone. Nothing left. It was like he'd never existed."
"Holy shit," exclaimed Emmett, looking around for someone to high-five. "I hope you learned to control that one?"
"I figured out the trigger. Just don't piss me off, Emmett, and you'll be fine," Bella warned.
Emmett sat down slowly, his hands held forward, caution written playfully on his face.
"I wasn't sure when I was going to make my move. But when I heard in Aro's thoughts, just a few days later, I saw that he was getting impatient with me, I knew my plan would have to start soon. He was wondering if there was even a point anymore. He was ready to go back to Italy and was satisfied with having me taken out by the Volturi guard. And so…my day came. I wasn't exactly ready, but I was willing to give it everything."
"Isabella, this is just useless. Do you realize what I've put on the line to be here? To test you and train you? But this is getting ridiculous! Where are those powers?" Aro spoke in frustration, as he circled Bella, his fingers on his temples. Bella just stood there, in the middle of the circular room, her shoulders slumped forward in mock discomfort.
"Maybe the glass room sucked them out of me," she suggested, her voice low but sarcastic.
Aro stopped and lifted his head, his ancient eyes on the girl in front of him.
Bella took a breath and stared right back, listening without expression to the thoughts flowing through Aro's head. They were of disappoint and defeat.
"Aro, what exactly would I gain you, had I been able to perform? You have Jane and the others with their powers. Together, the Volturi is more powerful than anything. Than anyone. Me included," Bella spoke.
"That's certainly the truth right I had seen so much in you, Isabella. Nathaniel was positive you held the key to the future of vampires, of the Volturi."
" The future how? I mean, what's wrong with the Volturi as it stands? Why would you need someone like me?"
Bella voiced the question, and though she knew Aro's answer would never contain the entire truth, she saw what Aro wanted in his mind. The greed, the power, the control.
He wanted to be feared by all. He wanted to use her as his own personal weapon, as the ultimate arsenal. He saw a war of worlds…he saw the vampires defeat all werewolves—he saw the disappearance of any immortal enemy. And he saw himself as the leader, victor and eventual ruler of all this. With Bella at his side-- his personal defender, his weapon. The key to his success.
And she saw the eventual revelation of vampires to the humans. She saw them in Aro's mind as slaves, as cows to the slaughter house.
Bella flinched at the images.
"You will never have that," she spat bitterly, her anger rising. A second too late, she realized she had perhaps given herself away.
Aro's eyes widened slightly.
"Never have what?" he repeated carefully.
Bella shifted her eyes away quickly, checking her anger.
"Isabella Swan? Is there something you're not- -"
Bella felt herself tense. And then, everything happened at once.
As Aro finished his sentence, ten members of the Volturi guard rushed in, Jane in the lead. Her eyes shifted quickly from Bella to Aro.
"Jane, what is the meaning of this? Can you not see I am rather occupied?" Aro spoke, his eyes still only on Bella. Bella had to focus sharply, as suddenly her senses were assaulted with ten other minds. But she could still hear Aro's the loudest.
And he was suspicious of her.
"Aro. Daniel is missing. He has been missing for days. No one has seen him since he moved her a few days ago," Jane paused, sneering at Bella with hostility.
Bella heard Aro's thoughts become crisper in their conviction. He straightened up, took a step forward.
"Isabella?" Bella stepped back, frightened.
It wasn't supposed to happen like this. Not eleven against one.
What if I can't do this?
"Isabella? Where is Daniel?"
Bella watched, feeling completely helpless, as Aro signaled for his guards to come forward. Jane grinned, her face full of a sinister pleasure. Bella heard her thoughts loudly. She couldn't wait to figure out a way to hurt Bella, to kill her. And later, to deliver the news to the Cullen's personally. Watch in satisfaction as Edward crumbled.
Bella's head snapped up at that last thought from Jane. She straightened her back and flipped back her hair. A smile played across her lips.
"Daniel? Ohhh, Daniel! Would that have been the guard I killed?" she spoke to Aro, but her eyes never left Jane's face. And then, she acted quickly.
Aro had to be first. He would be the key player in all of this. She thrust out a hand, focusing intently on Aro. His limbs froze completely, causing him to fall helplessly to the marble floor below. Quickly turning to position herself in front of his body, Bella turned her eyes to the already attacking guards.
"I wouldn't get too close," warned Bella, hoping her shield would work. She hadn't tried it since that day in Portland, so long ago it seemed, when Carlisle was testing her.
But she was able to smile in satisfaction when the two lead guards suddenly stopped, as though struck by an invisible wall.
"What the hell?" yelled one, reaching a hand out, suddenly cautious. The other stepped a few paces to the left and tried again, to no avail. The shield was working…and it was strong.
But it was also taking much of her focus and she knew she wouldn't be able to maintain the wall and keep Aro immobile.
"You're not going to be able to keep that up for long," sneered Jane, as the other guard members approached the wall.
"You're right. I should probably just kill Aro now and deal with the rest of you," she spoke, turning slightly. Aro looked at her silently, his eyes full of certain sickening awe.
"Ha! Do you know what it even takes to kill a vampire?" she was stalling and Bella knew it.
"Sure. I killed Nathaniel, didn't I?"
"Nathaniel killed himself. He was stupid."
Bella pulled back her wall. She knew she had to do it, but she cringed anyways as she chose the closest two guards and focused.
This time, there was no flying and hitting of wall. Just flame and smoke and then poof!--they were gone, as though they'd never existed.
A silence filled the room.
"My God," Bella heard Aro from behind her, but she didn't turn.
"Anyone else?" she demanded.
"Go! Kill her!" yelled Jane, her tone beyond hysterical. Four more guards rushed forward, their faces masks of determination and years of unquestioned obedience.
Bella closed her eyes briefly and then opened then, throwing forth the energy she had collected within. Three of the guards were thrown past Jane and up against the wall before flames shot out and they disappeared into smoke. The fourth guard apparently changed his mind half-way through and had turned back to Jane, missing Bella's burst of energy. Bella thrust her left hand forward, using her energy to stop the guard. She froze his limbs, and, like Aro minutes before, fell to the marble, rendered useless.
Jane and her three remaining guards started at her, every mouth agape.
"Hey Jane?" Bella asked, lowering her hands.
Jane scowled, pulling her lips together and pressing them into each other. Hard.
"I will find you. I will hunt you down and hurt you," announced Jane, her hands turning into small fists on her hips. "if it's the last thing I do."
Bella laughed dryly.
"Sorry Jane, but I've already planned out the last thing you're going to do. This is from Edward," and with that, Bella focused her power into her eyes as she gazed hard at Jane. Jane's eyes widened, as she realized what was about to happen to her.
She screamed as she hit the floor, withering in a pain she had never known.
"Now you understand what it feels like," said Bella quietly.
"Let her go, Isabella," spoke Aro's voice.
"Why?" demanded Bella, her eyes still on Jane, whose shrieking only grew louder.
"Because you've proven your point," he responded weakly.
"Have I? What exactly is my point, Aro?"
"That you hold more power than us. That we cannot keep you here."
"Yes. I am not one of you," she replied softly.
"Oh, but how wrong you are, Isabella. Look at yourself. You are one of us. A natural, I would say."
"No. I'm doing this to save my life. To save the lives of the people I love. You have a choice, Aro. You let me go and never, ever search for me. Never try to get me back in the Volturi. Never again bother the Cullen's. Go back to Italy alive and never think of me again. If you don't, I will kill you. You saw what I can do. Make the right decision," Bella took her eyes off Jane and the shrieking immediately stopped.
"You bitch!" yelled Jane, jumping to her feet.
But Bella only had eyes for Aro now. She had done her little demonstration. He knew what she could do—what she was capable of.
He had attempted to hold a neutral face. To show her nothing. But of course, she saw it all through his thoughts. He wasn't simply scared of her—he was horrified by what she could do. He knew she was serious and he was ready to go back to Italy—for good.
"That would be the right decision, Aro," smiled Bella, walking towards the door. As she passed Jane, the tiny girl went to lunge at her. With a flick of her hand, Bella sent out one final burst of energy. Jane flew at Aro, burst into flames and disappeared in a cloud of smoke right before his eyes.
Aro growled reflexively in anger, his limbs suddenly released and flailing everywhere.
"Unlike you, Aro, she would never have rested until she had hurt me severely. She was already plotting Edward's death."
And with that, Bella stepped out the door.
She didn't look back.
Not one guard bothered her as she wound her way through the mazes of the underground passages. Infact, she came across not one living (or dead) soul. Aro must have sent out the memo:
Don't fuck with Isabella Swan.
"…and the next thing I knew, I was standing in the middle of the woods with a baseball in my hands."
Bella finished her story quietly. She wasn't sure what the Cullen's were going to think of what she'd done and of who she had killed. She had told herself she was not going to look into their minds to find out. She would be patient. The room was completely silent and when she looked up, she looked at Edward first.
The look in her eyes must have spoken loudly, as Edward pulled her to him, wrapping his arms around her body protectively, holding her face eye-level to his own.
"You have nothing, nothing to be apologetic for, my love. You hear me? Aro deserved to die and yet you left him alive. And even though I can't hear anyone's thoughts while you're sitting next to me, I know we're all thinking it," Edward nodded towards the rest of his family.
"I can't believe you didn't use your crazy-ass powers on him, Bella," nodded Emmett, looking wistful as he karate chopped the air a couple of times.
"Seriously, Bella. Why didn't you?" asked Alice frowning slightly.
Bella chanced a look at Carlisle. After Edward, his opinion mattered most. Some of those vampires had been his friends.
"I am still…digesting your story, Bella. What you can do, it is beyond anything I have ever heard. To be able to kill a vampire with just a focusing thought. That is—well, it is unheard of," Carlisle mumbled. Esme smiled reassuringly from next to her husband.
"You did exactly what you had to do, Bella. If you are looking to us for forgiveness or acceptance, you need not. We will always, always stand behind you in your choices. I am just so happy you're home. Home safe. We were all so worried," she smile darkened slightly as she glanced at Edward.
Bella squeezed Edward's hand and smiled back at Esme.
"I didn't kill Aro because I knew how far back he and Carlisle go. And I had already killed so many. Too many. And Jane," Bella shuddered slightly at the thought of the creepy little girl with the ancient mind. "I had already delivered a blow to the Volturi, taking away Jane and Nathaniel…had I killed Aro, their leader, I don't know that the rest of the guard have would stopped until they figured out a way to kill me."
Bella watched Jasper nod thoughtfully.
"She's right. You're right, Bella. It may have taken years, centuries even…but they would have probably retaliated eventually."
"And now? You don't think they will?" asked Rosalie, her eyes flashing slightly.
"Not if what Bella said is accurate. It sounds like she scared the shit out of Aro. I don't see him messing with us. With Bella," responded Jasper.
Carlisle nodded in agreement.
"Aro likes the idea of power, but not power he can't control. With what Bella possesses, she could kill him at any second of any day and that would not sit well with him—she cannot be controlled. Aro will stay in Italy. And I will make the phone call to guarantee that," Carlisle said, his eyes on Bella.
Bella felt a huge sense of relief. She never should have doubted that they would all support her.
"I hope you won't be opposed to testing later on? We definitely need to be extremely carful and work on control. And also figure out if you can do anything else," Bella smiled at the excitement in the good doctor's voice. She nodded eagerly. She did not want any surprises. Or accidental injuries.
"Wait!" spoke Emmett suddenly, "You said you caught that baseball?" Bella nodded.
"It scared the crap out of me. Seemed to come from nowhere," she responded.
"Ha!We win! Bella caught your ball, Jasper! Pay up, my man!" Jasper groaned.
"I was kind of hoping Emmett wouldn't catch that part," he said, reaching into a pocket and pulling out a leather wallet.
The seriousness of the mood quickly evaporated as Bella burst out laughing with the rest of the Cullen's. Bella watched as Alice picked up the television remote control and threw it at Emmett's head.
Bella relaxed for the first time in many months.
They were her family. And as she looked around from face to face she knew she's found her spot in the world, right beside the people that loved her fiercely.
Bella could not get enough of Edward. She realized, as the first few days and nights flew by, that no matter where she was or who else she was with, she was always touching Edward. And he was always touching her back.
On her third night back, Bella and Edward wandered away from where the family had been hanging-out downstairs. Alone for the first time since their reunion in the woods, the pair--hand in hand--climbed the staircase and found Edward's room.
"It's such a habit, still, to want to be in a bedroom at night. It's weird. I definitely don't sleep anymore," whispered Bella, as Edward closed the door behind them.
"Do you miss it? Sleeping?" asked Edward, watching Bella jump effortlessly onto the bed. Bella lay back, placing her hands behind her head as Edward settled next to her on his side, one hand absently tracing small circles against her jeans-clad hip.
"Not anymore. Not with you here," replied Bella, unfolding one arm to reach over and stroke Edward's strong jaw. "And the horrible dreams…" Bella shuddered slightly, "Not missing those, either."
"And what about that? It seems like all your other abilities are intact except the one courtesy of Alice," spoke Edward, moving his hand up to her arm and rubbing her forearm gently with his thumb.
"I don't know. Maybe because it came through me only when I slept, that when sleeping ceased to be, I lost the ability," Bella had wondered herself before if that ability could have manifested itself in another way, but so far, that power had not re-appeared.
"I don't mind," she continued, "I'll leave that one to Alice. Do you think they've very frustrated that their abilities are blocked when I'm around? Does it frustrate you?"
Edward laughed softly and ran his free hand through his unruly hair.
"Me? Not at all. There's only one head I've ever wanted to get into and it's not available. I think Alice had been a bit frustrated because her visions are like a second nature to her. When all of a sudden she can't have any, I think she feels like a part of her is missing. Luckily, she can deal. I don't think she cares so much. And she would trade you any day for no power."
Bella pulled her hand back and flipped onto her side, smiling at Edward broadly.
"You know exactly the right thing to say, don't you," she teased.
"Nothing but the truth, love, " he replied, stroking her hair softly. Bella bent her head forward, suddenly on fire from his smoldering gaze.
But before their lips could meet, Edward pulled back slightly.
"Not so fast," he grinned. Bella opened her mouth to protest, but Edward placed a finger on her lips.
"I never did get my turn after your beautiful soliloquy in the woods the other day." Bella frowned slightly, wondering exactly what he was talking about.
"I've also found that my words have never served me the way I've wanted them to. Not when it comes to you," he paused again, glancing down at his hand and then back up at Bella.
"Bella, I know you've been using strict control as to not use your abilities on us. But I want you to use them on me. I want you to touch me with your barrier down, and see everything I have ever thought and ever y experience I've ever had. I want you to see you through me. My words have never done you justice, love. I want you to see it all."
Bella 's sharp intake of breath surprised them both. She had never even imagined breaching that kind of privacy. Not on any of the Cullen's but least of all, not on Edward.
"Sure? Yes. My heart is all yours Bella. It always has been, but now you'll know…well, you'll know everything," Edward spoke the words carefully, his eyes on Bella's uncertain ones.
"This will be everything, Edward. Everything you've ever thought."
He nodded, holding out both hands. Bella looked at them uncertainly at first and then she began to smile.
"I'm nervous," she laughed slightly.
"I'm the one who should be nervous. Please ignore the dirty teenage thoughts, okay?" he joked.
Bella took a breath and closed her eyes. She focused on relaxing her body. Controlling her powers was such a second nature by now, it took some effort to let that control go away. But when it did, she opened her eyes and looked one more time into Edward's eyes.
"I love you, Isabella Swan," Edward said softly, as Bella took his hands.
And then, in what felt like minutes, but was probably more like seconds, Bella watched as every thought Edward had ever thought flew at her.
A feeling of warmth flooded her body as she zeroed in on the thoughts riddled with her name and her image. Words reverberated through her head, accompanied by images and smells. She barely recognized herself in his thoughts—instead of the plain-jane human she had always imagined herself to have been, Edward's vision of her was far from plain…instead, she was the picture of beauty, she was perfection personified from the first time he'd really seen her. And there were all the important events laid out; their time in the meadow; their kisses. Holding her, but the frustration of always pulling back. And then leaving her outside behind Charlie's house in the forest. Bella felt her heart break for Edward. She hadn't realized how much he'd felt for her that day. Every single day.
And when he found out she was still alive, she felt his elation. And his fury that she'd been changed. But always, always, an overwhelming sense of love.
Bella pulled her hand away, wiping the non-existent tears in her eyes.
"No one's ever loved anyone else more," he whispered.
Bella's shoulders shook with emotion.
"I don't know that that's true—there may be one exception," she whispered, arching an eyebrow.
Edward smiled gently.
"There's one more," and before Bella could respond, Edward placed his hand on her breast, over her heart, and the newly revealed (but not at all new) thought struck Bella.
Her eyes widened and her lips parted.
But she could not reply.
She stared at Edward in shock, her breathing stopped completely. Edward quickly lost his smile.
"But if you…if now is too soon…I just hoped maybe one day," he stuttered, pulling back his hand and running it self-consciously through his hair.
Bella regained her breathing quickly and broke out into a beaming smile.
"Edward. Yes. Yes, of course I will! Forever and ever, how could you ever doubt that, you silly vampire," she pressed her hands to his elated face softly and kissed him with everything she felt inside.
And, despite a lack of heart beat and warm blood, that was a whole lot.
"Forever and always," she whispered into his lips, his last thought lingering between them; large and white and flowery.
"But I was thinking, instead of something so big and scary and attention-getting…we could elope instead?"
Edward laughed and gathered his new fiancée into his arms, pinning her to the bed and covering her face and shoulders in kisses as he worked his fingertips across her stomach, causing her to screech with laughter.
Outside, a full moon shone brightly in its surroundings, illuminating the happy couple inside. And soon, a silence overtook the pair as caresses rendered words useless, and fingertips conveyed a deeper meaning.
And Bella knew for certain: this was finally the beginning of forever and always.
A/N: Tear. Thank you guys for following this story and for always, always sending me your love and encouragement. It's meant more than I can say. I'd so love it if you could leave me a final review and sum up your feelings (good/bad/happy/sad) on Sleeping to Dream. It'll help me for my next story :)
Stay tuned for more from me. I'm only getting started :)
UPDATE: Check out Détruit, my newest story:)