Disclaimer: We are not Stephenie Meyer and therefore are not the rightful owners of the Twilight series or anything within it. Silly. :)
A/N: Hey guys. Sorry it's late. We've been having a serious heat wave in Washington (it got to 114 degrees in my neighborhood and 90 on the top floor of my house—inside—where I live today. Not fun), and my parents' room is the only one with AC so that's where I have to sleep in order to not suffocate from the heat, so I couldn't write at night like I normally do. Sorry. :( But here it is anyway.
By cALLIEfornia BENches
Chapter 34: Bliss Part II
The conversation between Alice and I was easy, as it always had been. The last few months had pretty much been dedicated to getting my strenuous relationship with Edward off the ground, and I felt like I had been neglecting my time with them. Now, whenever I saw them, it was about the baby or some sort of family function. It was never just for fun.
Talk of my relationship with Edward had pretty much come to a screeching halt when she asked what had happened to my neck, and then pointed to the surprisingly large hickey he had left the night before. My face had turned bright red, and it was probably the only time that our conversation had any sort of awkward pause.
I hardly even noticed when Edward came back all fresh and clean and lifted me up so I could sit on his lap again. He was quiet as Alice and I spoke, letting us catch up on our girl talk, which I appreciated. Though at times it was hard to concentrate when he got distracted and started pressing his lips wherever he could reach, his favorite place being the large purple spot visible just above the collar of his shirt that I had yet to change out of.
"Stop," I chastised lightly as he flicked his tongue once over the bruise. I pushed his face away from me and he growled.
"Yes. Please, stop," Alice said. "You're making me vomit in my mouth a little." She paused. "No, scratch that. You're making me vomit in my mouth a lot. And unless you want to personally clean up the barf, I suggest you stop. I understand that you're pretty much attached to her this morning, but can we hold off on the PDA for a little while?"
He huffed and sat back in the chair, defeated. "Fine," he said.
"As I was saying," Alice said with a fierce glare to her brother, "Jasper and I had a long talk and we decided that we were probably going to be ready to have kids in a little over a year. I'm ready now, but Jasper wants it to be just us for a little while longer before we have a little one. I think he's afraid it'll take a strain on our relationship."
"That's silly. You guys are 'Alice and Jasper.' You always have been and always will be."
Alice laughed. "I know that and he knows that. Personally, I think a kid will bring us closer. But I don't mind waiting a year. I'm in no rush to get it all done, you know? I'm ready whenever he's ready."
"I'm so happy for you guys," I said, leaning back when Edward put his arms around my waist. "Are you excited?"
Alice leaned so she was settled on the arm of the couch before she said anything. "Yes and no. Am I excited to get pregnant and finally have a little person who'll be the perfect combination of Jasper and me? Yes, I'm so excited I could take a lap around your apartment building." I laughed because, knowing Alice, she would. "But I don't want to get myself too pumped up yet, you know? Because I've still got a year to prepare. And I think too much excitement will be bad in the long run."
I nodded. I had thought it was weird when my best friends started getting married. But that was no where near as weird as knowing that they were all ready to start having kids. I was twenty-four; I wasn't ready to have kids. I knew the thought made me a little uncomfortable, and by the way Edward was squirming beneath me, I could tell he was uncomfortable, too. But what unmarried guy wouldn't get antsy at the talk of children? Not to say I never wanted kids, but I definitely didn't want them while I was still this young. Then again, what fun would going out on a Friday night be if all my friends were at home with their kids?
I think Alice could pick up on the awkwardness that had made itself at home in the room. She immediately stood up. "Well, I should probably get going. You two have… love-birdy things to do."
Edward stood, effectively standing me along with him, and we walked her to the door. She hugged us both goodbye and kissed our cheeks before tossing a wave over her shoulder as she made her way towards the elevators.
Edward closed the door and shot me a devilish grin. "You heard her," she said. "We should probably get on with those 'love-birdy' things before we have to go meet all them." He took a step towards me and I took a step back in response. And another, and another until he had me backed up against the couch. But just as he pressed into me for what I knew would be some form of a heated kiss, I whimpered.
"Ow," I said quietly as a short pain shot from my lower back upon contact from the couch.
His brow furrowed and he immediately stepped away. "Did I hurt you?" he asked. But before I could say anything, he spun me around and got down on his knees. He lifted up the shirt I was wearing gingerly over the small of my back.
He took in a sharp breath before he started laughing. "Oh, god," he said. "Oh, Bella, I'm so sorry."
"What?" I tried to turn my head around and see, but it was useless. I walked to the hallway mirror and lifted the bottom of my shirt so I could see what he was laughing at. Sure enough, there was a large and rather nasty rug burn at the base of my back from the night before. I had felt it when I got it, but I never thought it would look as bad as it did.
It was a large welt, maybe the size of my own hand. It was angry, red, and looked a lot worse than it really was.
"Jesus, Edward, what did you do to me?" I laughed as I poked at the new scab. It only hurt when it was directly receiving the pressure, but it didn't change the fact that I wouldn't be able to wear a bikini for a while. Unfortunately, that was horribly inconvenient since we were going to Alki today. Maybe I could get away with wearing a t-shirt or something. I hadn't even seen anything else under the shirt. There was bound to be more somewhere.
Having completely forgotten that Edward was even in the room, I started walking back to his bedroom and pulled his shirt over my head. It didn't even completely occur to me that I was only wearing a pair of underwear underneath. I just wanted to see what I looked like.
The long mirror in Edward's room was rarely used. I had an inkling that it was something that Alice had gotten for him either at his old place or as a housewarming gift. It wasn't something Edward would use; it hung on the back of the door like an impatient kid holding onto the shoulders of their father. It was a little pathetic, but it'd get its use eventually.
Like now, for instance.
I stood in front of the mirror and examined my skin. Thankfully, it wasn't as bad as I thought it'd be. Aside from the rug burn and the ridiculous hickey on my neck, there were only a couple small hickeys—one just above my right breast and the other on my left shoulder—and another minor rug burn on the back of my shoulder.
"Not bad, Masen," I muttered as he appeared behind me in the mirror.
He placed his hands gingerly on my hips and kissed the spot on my neck as he grinned. "That one's my favorite one," he said, his lips hot against my neck. I leaned my head to the side so he could have more access and his hands slid their way up to cup my breasts. His fingers massaged the skin gently and I moaned, relaxing fully against his body.
"Mmm," I groaned with a sigh. "You're going to need to stop that if we're ever going to start getting ready." He simultaneously nipped my neck and ran his fingers over my nipples, forcing me to let out this terribly embarrassing mewl-like sound. "Or finish," I mumbled.
"Oh, I plan on finishing," he said with a smug grin. "You will, too."
I groaned again, but it was more in annoyance now than pleasure. "Edward, please."
"What do you want, Bella?" he asked seductively, too lost in lust to realize that I wasn't really into it anymore.
My hand made my way to my mouth, trying to hold back the chuckles. "Edward," I told him in a sexy voice, trying to lure him on. "Oh, Edward, do you know what I want?" I bit my lip to try and keep from noticing my shaking shoulders as his lips traveled from my neck to the tops of my shoulder before moving up to my jaw. I shivered from the feel of it, but it didn't change how I felt. I was too sore and we didn't have enough time.
"Tell me what you want, baby."
My grin practically split my face in half. It'd be a miracle if he didn't notice my body shaking in laughter, now. "I want," I whispered lowly into his ear, "I really want you to go finish getting ready."
"Yeah?" he whispered back, his voice husky. "You want me to—" He froze and looked up at me, an angry smirk on his face as he realized what I had done. "Oh, you sly dog," he said. I snuck out from beneath his grasp and escaped towards the bathroom, picking up his shirt and pulling it over my head as I went. "You're going to pay for that."
I heard his footsteps trailing behind me and I slammed the bathroom door shut quickly, hiding in the shower as if that'd provide some sort of nuclear protection. A second later, the door snapped open and I heard his footsteps pad on the tile floor of the bathroom and I held my breath.
"Oh, Bella," he sang. "Where are you?"
There wasn't much question as to where I was, but it made me smile nevertheless. But it immediately faded when his hand shot into the shower and turned the water on. The cold water covered my head and soaked Edward's shirt through and through, making it cling to my skin. I probably looked like a drowned rat, but when he stuck his head in with that stupid grin, I couldn't help but grin again. He was just too darn cute. When he stepped in the shower, though, I reached a hand out to stop him.
"Didn't you shower like a half hour ago?" I asked as he tore his shirt over his head and started unbuckling his jeans.
"Of course," he said. "But who's to say that I spent enough time showering? Maybe I was just trying to relieve my morning wood?" He stepped into the shower for the second time in the last hour, naked, and I couldn't help the growl that formed in my chest. "Maybe I need another one." He came to me and pulled his shirt over my head for what seemed like the eighteenth time this morning and tossed it out of the shower. It landed with a splat on the floor, but not a second later he was pulling my panties down over my knees and to my ankles.
As soon as those were gone, Edward pulled me close. "No funny business, mister," I scolded as I molded into him and buried my face in his chest. "We seriously need to get ready."
"Mhmm," he said. "No funny business. Got it." His hands traveled up and down the wet, slippery skin back.
I closed my eyes as the water cascaded down from over his shoulders and down his chest, swiping over my face and my hair. I felt him reach over to grab his soap and wrap it in the one washcloth that I had claimed as my own a while back. He started wiping it over my back, the suds slipping off and into the water that was washing down the drain. He was extra gentle over the rug burn, kissing me even through the sharp sting.
He continued his path, prying me away from him as he took care of both of my legs—and the apex, of course, but he was a gentleman about it. Well, sort of anyway. He only slipped in two fingers, claiming that even the inside needed to be cleaned if he was going to be as thorough as he wanted. I rolled my eyes, but secretly enjoyed the jolt of pleasure it sent through me.
Edward followed up my stomach and my breasts, kissing each one gingerly before moving to my shoulders and arms, and subsequently my cheeks and neck.
When he finished, he brought out his shampoo and rubbed it into my hair just the way I had taught him. The first time we showered together, he had been a little clumsy and may have torn out a few hairs on accident. But he was much better now, and my eyes rolled back into my head as he massaged my scalp.
A surprisingly feminine giggle escaped his chest when my head was full of the suds, and I slapped his arm lightly before turning into the water to wash it all out. The whole process was repeated on him, and I couldn't help the smile on my face when I 'washed' the length of him and it was his turn to moan. But with those two exceptions, the shower was surprisingly not sexual.
But as we stepped into the hallway to get to my car, we ran into Craig. And that dirty little smile of his.
"You know," he said as he sauntered over to where we were standing. I couldn't help but try not to laugh at him. This was Craig we were talking about, and he just tried to saunter. Ew. "I couldn't help but notice last night as I was walking back to my apartment that there was a lot of commotion coming from your room, dear Edward."
Edward flushed and I buried my face into his side.
"You two have quite the vocal chords, did you know that?" He laughed and turned away. "Told you the angry sex would be the hottest. Didn't I say that?" he called over his shoulder.
We watched as he disappeared into his apartment, laughing. "We need new neighbors," Edward commented before he led me to the elevators.
"You're late," Alice exclaimed.
Edward glanced at his watch on the hand that was holding my own. "Alice, it's 3:59. You called us when we were stepping out of the shower and told us to meet you here at four. We technically still have one minute until we're on time. And why are we here so early, anyway? Did you say dinner would be before Alki?"
"Yes, but I changed my mind. Is that so wrong? We're going to do a walk and then, if you guys really want to, we can go for a little swim."
I looked at Edward from the corner of my eye. "I didn't bring a suit," I said. I didn't tell her that my not bringing a suit had been on purpose. How embarrassing would it have been to wear it and have everyone see the effects of rough sex on Edward's hallway carpet? No, thank you. Not today, not ever. That was too out of line for me.
"Edward obviously remembered," she noted. "And you can just wear your bra and panties, can't you?"
My lips pursed, quickly trying to find a way out of it. "I wouldn't be able to wear anything out to eat," I settled on, even though I knew I was losing this battle.
Alice rolled her eyes. "You think the people at these restaurants have never seen someone with a wet swimsuit bleeding through their clothes? Please, Bella. Just get over it."
Edward sensed that I wasn't really comfortable and brought his arm around my waist. But he didn't defend me. Stupid boyfriend. The rest of them had gotten there a little before us and were already stripped down to their swimsuits and in the water. Even Rosalie had decided to get her hair wet. She and Emmett looked comfortable, sitting in the shallow water with her back to his chest as he rubbed soothing circles over her ever-expanding stomach. Alice had jumped on Jasper's back and didn't even look back at us as they headed towards the water.
As soon as they were out of earshot, I glared up at Edward before tearing myself away from him. "Thanks for helping me out, Edward," I said dryly as I sat my purse down in the pile that I knew had everyone else's things and crossed my arms over my chest, my back facing him. It came off more mad than I really was, but I didn't bother to correct myself.
His arms wrapped around my waist. And his chin propped onto my shoulder. It didn't escape my notice that he had already stripped his shirt off and was only in his swim trunks. My focus was thrown off slightly when the back of his chest came into contact with my shirt.
"Are you mad at me?" he asked. His fingers stroked lightly at the skin on my hips, making it hard to be angry.
"You didn't help me out. I don't want them to see that. It's embarrassing and we'll never live it down."
Edward hummed as if he was contemplating exactly what to say. "Well, think about it this way. Maybe we won't ever live it down. But at the same time, the second your shirt and shorts come off, everyone on this beach is fully aware that you are taken and mine. Call me selfish, but isn't that even somewhat of a turn on for you? Showing off that magnificent little mark on your back that proves that you are fully satisfied." His lips pressed just behind my ear. "Can you maybe consider it?"
My lips pursed, but I wasn't really mad. "Yeah, it is kind of hot. But still. Have you ever met your brother?"
"Maybe we could tell him you fell. It's not completely unbelievable."
I rolled my eyes, smiling. "Yeah, because the hickey wouldn't give everything away."
His lips pulled back into a grin against my cheek, where he was currently peppering kisses. "Take one for the team, Isabella," he murmured. "Just this once. It'll be you and me, alright? I'll help you out. Do what I can to take the brunt of it all. Do you want me to go talk to them about it?"
I shook my head. "No," I said, "That's fine. I can tolerate it. I just won't like it."
"You and me," he said as he helped me pull my shirt over my head. I unbuttoned my shorts and pulled them down to my ankles, thankful that I had gone with the black boy shorts over the white thong. That would have been embarrassing.
Edward kissed each shoulder before grabbing my hand and helping me wade into the water. It was much colder than I had originally expected, and I let out a little squeal before clinging to Edward's waist. He chuckled before scooping me up and carrying me into deeper water. I could immediately see his intentions.
"No," I said, holding on around his neck for dear life. Maybe if I used all my strength, I'd be able to hold on when he let go. "No, no, no, no, no. Edward, please don't do this." The water was up to his hips now, and I knew it was only a matter of time. My but was almost hitting the water. "You don't want to do this, do you, Edward? Come on, I know you don't want to." I put one of my hands on his cheek, trying to distract him. But it wasn't working, and now I only had one arm around his neck.
He saw this as his perfect opportunity. His arms disappeared from underneath me and I fell straight down into the water with a splash. It slapped against the rug burn, making it sting just a little. My hair was swamped by the water and rushed into my face, the water flowing up my nose. When I resurfaced, I couldn't stop coughing. It felt like there was more water in my lungs than any human should ever have.
I slapped Edward's chest as I tried to cough out the rest of the water. "You bastard," I said between wheezes.
"You love me," he said, pulling me to him and effectively shutting me up.
"Shut up," I replied, pressing a kiss to his chest.
"Holy shit, what the hell happened to you?" Emmett asked as he rushed over to where we were standing. Edward spun me around and pulled my back against his chest so he couldn't see. Not that it was much help. Emmett had already seen it. He pulled on my arm, trying to get me to show it to him again, but I wouldn't. Edward was holding me too tightly. "Jesus, little bro. You guys must have had quite the night. Was this last night or is this relatively old?" he asked.
Edward all but snarled at Emmett. "Enough," he said. "Leave it alone."
But it was Emmett, so of course he wouldn't. In fact, he called more people over. "Alice, Jasper, Rosie baby, come check this out." Alice and Jasper treaded awkwardly through the water to come see what he was talking about. Rosalie simply waved her hand saying that she'd see it later. "Look at this," he said, pulling me from Edward's grasp and spinning me so everyone else could see.
"Oh, so that's what you were trying to hide," Alice said, laughing.
I went back to Edward and buried my face into his chest. He placed his arms over the small of my back, concealing everything from them. "Man, guys, you don't do anything half-assed, do you?" he said. "And Jesus, Eddie, did you have to take her on the carpet? That's gotta hurt."
"I'm not kidding," Edward said. "Leave her alone. She didn't even want to come out here today because of it."
"Aw, Bella, it's nothing to be ashamed of. We've all had our fair share of battle scars," Jasper said. But he couldn't keep the wicked grin from his face. "Granted, I've never had any that big…," he trailed off.
Edward's breath picked up and I could tell he was getting angry. I brought my head up to look at him and dove a hand through his damp hair, calming him what little I could. I feel this heartbeat slow to normal before he looked down to me. "Are you alright?" he asked. I nodded. I was able to take the heat, but it just sucked. I knew it was all in good fun, but I wasn't used to being the one that was made fun of. Usually it was us making fun of Emmett and Rosalie.
"I'm fine," I told him quietly. "They're just joking around. Nothing to get worked up about, okay?"
His eyes closed and he nodded. I kissed him chastely. It'd be fine.
After many games of chicken—only between Edward, Jasper, Alice, and I, of course—and a refreshing dinner, Edward and I headed home. I was exhausted from the last two days and Edward was practically carrying all of my weight into the elevator. My hair was curly from not being properly dried after the beach, my shirt was soaked through from my bra, and my wet jean shorts were anything but comfortable.
I was vaguely aware of Edward's hand digging into his pocket and pulling out the famous silver coin. "Call it," he said, somehow knowing that I was awake even though I wasn't even completely sure I was.
"Heads," I mumbled.
He flipped it in the air and caught it with the hand that wasn't around my waist. "Heads it is. What time does your mom get here tomorrow?"
"Ten." My eyes were pretty much shut by now.
"I'll set your alarm for nine, is that alright?"
"Mhmm," I said. My head slumped against his chest and his arm tightened around me to keep from falling flat on my face. I think he mentioned something about needing to stay awake for just a little longer, but I didn't care. It didn't matter to me that I wasn't in my bed, or that I was standing in an elevator. All that mattered was that I was tired and wanted to sleep.
And for the second time in the last two days, Edward had to carry me to bed and put me in some different clothes. I owed this man. I probably owed him my life.
But for now, I wanted to sleep. I'd pay him back in the morning.
A/N: One flashback after this and then the start of the climax. Which means roughly six more chapters and an epilogue. Sigh. Sad day.
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