A/N: Stephenie Meyer owns Twilight and all of its characters.
I can not believe how long it took me to write this. I totally underestimated the complexity! I hope in the end it comes through in the realistic fashion that it was intended to reflect since I tried to stay true to Stephenie Meyer's characters. Consider this the sex she never wrote LMAO. So anyway, this is the last chapter and the end of the story. It's really stinking long but it was the only way I could write it with the vision I had in mind. I hope you enjoy.
Please note: The rating of the story is M and the chapter is absolutely brimming with sexual situations so please use your discretion and consider yourself warned.
He looked back at me with so much emotion it was as if he was wringing my heart. There was fear, and love, and longing, and a million other things in his expression and I felt stuck between urging him on with my confidence in us and soothing his fears by pulling back. I laid my hands gently on his knees. He didn't flinch or pull away, just sighed softly. I took that as a good thing. I slid my hands gradually up from his knees and along his thighs with a gentle soothing pressure and then back down again. His eyes drifted closed and my pulse shot up in exaltation. I did not alter my movements though, just continued to slowly stroke his thighs, waiting for his expression to become relaxed.
"I want to be closer to you. Is it ok?" I had to ask him or risk putting my whole plan in jeopardy. As much as I wanted to give into every fleeting emotion that I was feeling I couldn't. This had to go at his pace and I needed his permission for every single thing I wanted to do before I did it. I anticipated his hesitation correctly and I didn't let it put me off. I reminded myself how hard this was for him, how it was a small miracle that he was even letting us try and indulged his concerns for a few moments. He just needed time to adjust to my request and prepare himself.
He nodded his head slightly but his eyes were still unsure, which I took as a warning to stay away. I didn't move. I wanted him to know that I could sense his apprehension and that I respected his feelings the same way he respected mine. I wanted him to know that I could be very patient and that I wanted him to be ok with everything in order for things to proceed. I waited for his body to relax a bit and I judiciously asked him again. "Can I come closer?"
His lips curved into a tiny smile and he opened his arms for me. I smiled back at him and began to move cautiously towards his lap. I'd sat on his lap plenty of times before but never wearing so little or asking so much. My movements were intentionally laggard and I never moved my eyes from his, always judging his reaction and interpreting the message I saw there. Finally I felt his arms close around me and I knew he was ok. I rested my weight against his chest and relaxed into it.
We sat like that for a while - me nuzzled into his stone-hard chest and his cheek resting on the top of my head. I wasn't really bothering to keep track of time because we had all night if we needed it. His comfort was so much more important to me than anything else. He seemed to be doing fine so far but I hadn't exactly pushed the boundaries of contact yet either. I longed to reach out and stroke his chest where I leaned against it but I couldn't do that yet. A hundred or perhaps a thousand little steps had to be taken between where we were and that particular pleasure.
I pulled back a little from him to check his eyes. "Are you ok?" I wondered.
"Yes. Are you?" His answer was too quick, like an expected response or a stock answer designed to soothe me and avoid sharing what he was really thinking.
"Wonderful," I assured him. "But please don't worry about me Edward. I'm much more concerned with how you're doing."
He looked at me with a stoic expression and I was abruptly unsure if he was comfortable with what I was doing at all. I pushed backwards away from him to study his face. I could see a mixture of pain and restraint there. He wasn't relaxed and there was no pleasure or enjoyment in our closeness for him. He really did just want to please me even at the expense of his own comfort and feelings. I was struck by a sudden remorsefulness.
"I'm sorry," I explained. "I thought if we took it slowly it would be ok, but right now I just feel like I'm forcing myself on you. I wanted this to be something you wanted, for you to enjoy yourself, but I'm just causing you discomfort and pain. Maybe we're just not ready for this."
His words stung me like I'd been slapped in the face and I was flooded by a wave of guilt and unworthiness and shame, embarrassed by my attire and position in Edward's lap. I quickly pulled myself out of his lap mumbling, "I should have known that this wasn't something you wanted."
"Bella, no," he gasped with a horrified whisper, reaching for me as I slipped out of his reach. "That's not it at all."
It was too late. He could say whatever would clear his conscience. I wouldn't believe him anyway. I rushed to the other side of the room towards my hoodie, seeking to camouflage the now ridiculous gift and my scantily clad body from his eyes. As I bent over to pick up my hoodie it disappeared before my eyes, now stashed behind Edwards back.
"Give me my hoodie Edward!' I demanded.
"Bella, please," he soothed with his best velvety voice. "You're blowing this entirely out of proportion. I only meant that this is a big step and shouldn't be taken lightly."
I thrust my open palm at him furiously but said nothing.
"Bella," he pleaded. Without looking at his face I knew exactly what it would look like, topaz eyes smouldering, perfect lips pouting, his face slightly skewed in concern for me. He knew that normally one look at him like that and he'd have his way but today my injured pride would not be won over as easily as he expected.
"My hoodie Edward."
"No," he stated petulantly. "You started this, now finish it."
My eyes darted to his face in confusion. "Started what?"
"This," he declared, wagging his hand hastily between the two of us. At least he didn't insult me further by giving my feeble attempt at seduction a name.
I dropped my head. "It's nothing," I mumbled. "Forget it."
"It's not nothing to me Bella. I don't want to forget it." His voice was so calm and almost sad that it caught me off guard. I looked up and saw him staring down at me, his expression earnest and solemn. "Why are you under the misconception that I don't want this as much as you do?"
I didn't answer him. I couldn't. I just felt so entirely foolish that I was unable to collect my thoughts.
"Please answer me," he petitioned softly. "Or I'll be forced to think you're simply being cruel for the pleasure of it."
Even though I knew he was joking I couldn't respond. It wasn't funny to me and I felt incredibly vulnerable and exposed standing in front of him half-clothed.
"Bella don't you understand how very difficult this is for me?" he pressed.
"Yes." My answer was muted and half-hearted. I'd heard it all before.
"You've not thought about it from my perspective though?"
He waited for me to answer, and while I had often pondered his perspective I had no answer for him. I felt like no matter what I said he'd just shut me down anyway so I remained silent.
"I love you," he whispered, anguished. "Every moment I'm with you I want more than I'm allowed to have. One touch makes me want ten. One kiss makes me crave twenty. Every time I put my hands on you I have to force myself with great effort to remove them from you, implore myself to stop before I go too far towards that invisible line where I lose my self-control. You are the most precious and most fragile thing in my life and even the idea that I could hurt you kills me. This has nothing to do with not wanting you. Of course I want you. I want you like I've never wanted another person in my entire existence, human or vampire. You are the only one who has ever made me feel such desire, such ardent passion that I feel like I could explode if I don't get to touch you the way I want to. Don't you understand Bella? Can't you see that I have waited for this my entire life for someone to live for and to love…for you?"
"This isn't about your thirst or you not wanting me?" I whispered disbelievingly.
"No it isn't you silly absurd girl. I want you." He placed a hand on each side of my face and held it firmly between his fingers. "And before you start down that path, let me be specific. I want you in exactly the same way you want me. I want to take in every bit of you with my eyes and feel your skin against my own and underneath my fingertips with no barrier in between. I want to cover you in kisses and explore every part of you intimately. I want to make love to you…to connect with you in a way I've never connected with another person before. There isn't a single part of it I don't want Bella. I'm just so afraid that I will hurt you if I'm not in full control of my actions at all times. Surely you can understand how difficult that might be in the throes of passion?"
His words, 'the throes of passion,' made my stomach knot in an unfamiliar way. It sounded so sexy coming from him that it sent a shiver down my spine and left me quivering between his fingers. "Yes," I nodded to hide my shaking, "I can imagine that might be very difficult."
He kissed me softly on the lips, moving towards my mouth slowly and moving away even more dilatorily. "So please don't pull away from me Bella," he whispered longingly. "I'm yours…and I'm more than willing to try what you're asking. I just need you to promise to tell me if I do something wrong, if I offend you or hurt you. I need you to promise to at least try and understand if I have to pull away because I don't feel in control of myself. And please know that it's not you. It will forever and always be me trying to control my strength and protect your very breakable body."
"Forever and always?"
"For as long as you are human," he whispered. He bent in to kiss me again, a little less softly and a little more urgently, no doubt trying to prove the strength of his convictions to me. It felt so good to feel him pressed up against me, to feel his lips on mine after so many days without them and without the constraints of safe contact imposing on us. He wasn't really doing anything differently. I just wasn't so afraid of him pulling away or stopping us.
When he broke away from my kiss I kept my eyes closed and savoured the taste of him on my lips. "I really want to make this work," I murmured.
"So do I Bella," he assured me confidently with just a hint of discomfort. I opened my eyes to look at him, to see if he was ok and to reassure him again but hesitated once I realized that he was staring at my body. I held very still, watching him closely and patiently, waiting for him to decide what he wanted to do. His hands relaxed on my face and he let his fingers run along my jawbone tenderly before curling them around my neck. They tangled into my hair absently as his thumbs strayed back out to stroke my jawbone again. His eyes were locked on my collarbone and shoulders. At first it seemed like a strange thing to stare at until I realized that he rarely saw me with bare shoulders. The weather in Washington didn't allow it very often. And he certainly hadn't seen my bare shoulders sporting thin spaghetti straps made of satin in his favourite colour of blue on me.
I watched his face study my body intently, watched how his expression subtly changed in response to each change that his eyes registered. I could see an entire range of emotions on his face as he took in each little thing, the scar on my shoulder for instance. His mouth puckered slightly when he saw it and I imagined from the small change that manifested that he wondered how I got it or if it had hurt me or perhaps wondered if it bothered me still. He was concerned for me. There was no hint of disgust. He was not turned off by it. He appreciated it as part of me, part of the larger whole. Every feature, small and large alike, was taken into his memory in such intricate detail that he could probably redraw me with perfection in his mind. In that moment I had a new appreciation of just how lucky I was, doubting that there were many men who would garnish such consummate attention on the woman they loved. The way he looked at me made me feel beautiful; it made me feel perfect and it only made me want him even more. I shivered in anticipation of finally being able to give him all of my love and of all the things I could make him feel if he could make me feel perfect just by the way he looked at me.
He pulled one had free from my hair and let one finger draw a line down my neck and then trace my collarbone. I had to close my eyes for a moment because his touch felt so divine that I couldn't concentrate on anything else. My head was spinning and my knees were weak. I was almost embarrassed at my body's reaction to his simple touch.
His other hand slipped out of my hair and slid down my neck, stopping abruptly at the thin strap on my shoulder. His eyes quickly darted to my face and back to the strap while his finger ran the length of the strap tentatively. He softly pushed it aside and watched it slip down my shoulder. His eyes retraced its path in reverse and stopped on my now bare shoulder. For someone with so little experience in the art of seduction, he seemed to have my number quite fully. I was already aching for him to touch me, to feel his skin against my own. My skin felt completely overheated and my heart was thudding so hard in my chest I was amazed it was still working.
He leaned in and kissed my shoulder in the spot where the strap had once laid. I shivered in response to his cool breath on my skin.
"Are you cold?" he whispered, kissing my shoulder again.
"Turned on," I breathed, working furiously to control myself. I could feel him smile against my shoulder. Perhaps I shouldn't have been worried about Edward at all. He seemed perfectly in control. I, on the other hand, was ready to jump him, an action that would surely not be the safest option for either of us, which I continually reminded myself of with an almost chant like repetition in my head.
"Do you like this?" he teased between kisses, his voice so deep and sultry it should have been illegal. He lips moved along my shoulder and up my neck at such a torpid pace and garnishing so much attention to my skin that by the time he reached my ear I no longer felt steady on my feet. Without thinking I reached out for him to try and find my balance, my fingers curling around his button down shirt and pulling it into my fist. In less time than it took for my heart to take its next beat Edward's arms closed around me tightly and he pushed us back into the wall, pinning me to it with his body. Without even consciously trying I had found an action that both turned Edward on and pushed him past the point of control, both good and bad. I immediately let go of his shirt and froze, waiting for him to relax as I worked to slow my pounding heart and struggled to get oxygen into my lungs. It was almost impossible to ignore the intensity of Edward's mouth on my neck as he kissed and sucked at my sensitive skin, seeking some unattainable gratification that had been aroused by me grabbing his shirt. I tried my hardest not to notice how my toes flexed and tightened when he licked the hollow behind my ear and the way my fingers twitched and longed to twist into his hair when he tried to pull me impossibly more close to him. I wasn't even sure if he was out of control or just lost in the connection of our bodies but I didn't dare move until I was sure. It was the strangest fusion of pleasure and fear, being given exactly the physical contact and ardent affection that I had always wanted and being simultaneously carried away in it and fearing its inherent lack of control.
Edward stopped kissing me but didn't pull away. Instead he dropped his head onto my shoulder and nuzzled into my neck. "Sorry," he breathed. "I just…" he panted.
"I'm not sorry," I soothed. "I just wanted to make sure you were ok…that your uncontrollable vampire hormones were in check." Making light of our unique obstacles seemed like an easier way to handle the tension. I wanted Edward to know that I was ok, that we were both ok and still in full control of ourselves.
"Uncontrollable vampire hormones," he chuckled, pulling back to look at me. "I guess I deserved that. I swear to you I will never blame your human hormones again."
"You can blame anything you want," I assured him with an enormous smile. He looked so handsome that he took my breath away.
He tipped his head sideways and looked at me with a raised brow. "What is it?" he asked curiously, a smile flirting on his lips.
I couldn't help myself. I was completely elated. "You didn't pull away from me. You don't know how happy that makes me, to know that we crossed a line and you didn't shut us down or shut me out." I wondered if he could possibly understand what I was so awkwardly trying to express.
"I guess that I finally understand how important it is to you. I know that you'll understand if I can't handle it and have to pull away…and that you'll be ok because you know that we can try again."
"I will," I agreed.
He looked at me with intensity and emotion as he continued his thoughts. "It's more than that though. It's important to me too. I always assumed that I wasn't capable of this sort of intimacy with you because you were human. I was so busy controlling our interactions and trying to keep you at a safe distance that I didn't realize I was creating stress in an already stressful situation. I had myself so convinced that it was impossible that I wouldn't even let myself consider being with you. I used to live in fear that I would lose control of my thirst and kill you but after Volterre…well, I know what it's like to live without you now. The thirst isn't even a real consideration anymore, just an annoyance. Your safety is the biggest concern, really the only concern I have now when it comes to loving you. It's a relief to finally admit that I want you, that I want this." He ran his hand softly down my side, letting it lightly caress me as it skimmed the curves of my body.
"You have no idea how good that feels," I whispered, "or how good it feels to hear you say that you want me like this. I know you love me but all this time…I know that we don't have a conventional relationship but it never stopped me from wanting this with you. And even though I knew that we had considerations that other couples didn't it was hard to always remember that it wasn't me or something that I was doing wrong."
"It was never that Bella," he declared. "It was always just me trying to do right by you, trying to keep you safe, and trying to love you the only way I knew how. But there is no reason if we're slow and careful that we can't make this work." He smirked conspiratorially at me. "I do want you to have all of the human experiences you're able to before your time runs out."
"And just what human experience might you be referring to?" I teased knowingly.
"This one," he murmured, pulling me closer to him and burying his face in my neck again. His perfect lips planted soft feathery kisses along my collarbone. "And this one," he continued in the quietest of voices, moving his lips the length of my neck and up towards my ear, stopping here and there to suck or lick my skin the tiniest bit. "And of course this one," he added. His velvety voice and ice cold breath combined to hit my ear in the most erotic way, followed by his unyielding lips pressing into my skin at the most sensitive spot behind my ear. I shuddered against the rush of electric energy it sent through me, trying to resist it as it tried to take me under.
"Can you feel it?" I wondered breathily. "Can you feel it too, or is it just me?"
"The energy?" he asked. "Yes. I'm not sure if it's the same for you as it is for me but I can feel something between us."
"Like a spark," I agreed shyly.
"It's amazingly hard to fight. I'd rather liken it to a magnetic force. I can feel it all around us and the closer we get the stronger the pull."
"That's why I've always been so amazed at your control. I can't fight it. Right now I'm almost overcome by it," I told him honestly.
"Just by this simple touch?" he questioned softly, running a finger along my hip. "Or is it more intimate contact?" he continued, planting a soft kiss behind my ear.
"It's all of it, every time you touch me," I informed him.
"And you me," he agreed.
"Can I touch you too Edward? Or will it be too much?" I whispered shyly, hoping he wouldn't say no to my request.
"We can try," he assented. He reached for my hand and laid my palm against his chest, studying my face anxiously trying to determine if he'd done the right thing.
I blushed and looked down, trying to gather my courage. "I'd like to unbutton your shirt," I blurted, trying to channel my desire into what seemed like the next logical step towards what I wanted. When I finally lifted my eyes to his, the liquid topaz eyes looking back at me told me that he was ok, and when he nodded his head a tiny bit I allowed my hands to move to the lapel of his shirt. The top button was already opened so I let my hand slide slowly down the placket to the second button. Being careful with slow and obvious movements I unbuttoned the button gracefully. My mouth was practically watering by the time I repeated the actions on the fourth button. His perfectly chiselled chest was open for glorious inspection and my avaricious eyes were studying it intently. I finished the last button so anxious that my hands were shaking like I'd had too much caffeine. I reached for his hand and turned it palm up between us, using my fingers to open the button at his wrist and silently praying he'd understand that I wanted it off of him. After I repeated the action with his other wrist I looked up at him with wide expectant eyes.
"Will you take it off of me?" he requested with the softest of murmurs.
It was like a test of my willpower, and not one I was entirely sure I could pass. My hands wandered up to his shoulders while my eyes darted up to his, always checking his reaction and conscious of how easily I could go too far without really trying. I debated slow and singular movements against quick and fast and decided the latter would be better. Moving both hands at once, I slipped them under the fabric of his shirt and ran my fingers over his granite hard skin to push the shirt back off his shoulders. His cool smooth skin felt good against my warm fingertips. I followed the outline of his arms, allowing my fingers to drift along his skin and slowly coax his shirt over his muscled deltoids and biceps. It was heavenly. The shirt dropped to the floor once my hands reached his elbows and Edward stood before me in all of his glory, naked from the waist up. Twenty different ideas of what I'd like to do to his bare chest sprang into my mind at once and I flushed instantly. I bent over to retrieve Edward's shirt from the ground to hide my red face from him.
"Bella please stand up," he insisted in a strained tone.
I wasn't sure what I'd done wrong, whether it was the blushing or how I'd taken off his shirt so I looked to him for guidance. His shirt was in my hands so I innocently held it out to him. "Too far too fast?" I guessed.
"No, not exactly." He forced a smile to his lips but it didn't hide his discomfort. I waited for him to tell me what I'd done. He was almost squirming under my gaze and I felt even more baffled.
"What did I do Edward?" I asked alarmed. "Please just tell me."
His eyes shifted to the ground. "You bent over," he whispered. I'm sure the way my face squished up into a confused glare must have looked hilarious to him, although not quite as funny as my gaping mouth when I finally caught on to what he meant. This one I wasn't going to let him get out of so I waited for him to fully explain. If Edward was capable of blushing he'd have been blood red. "It's just that those panties don't offer a lot of coverage and when you bend…well…there's very little coverage at all."
There was no way I could resist commenting. "Is that a good thing or a bad thing?" I teased.
"It's a very good thing when one is expecting it. I unfortunately wasn't," he explained.
"Well if it's easier I could just take them off," I offered in mock innocence. I smiled slyly at him, wondering when I'd get used to catching him in his human moments, when I would become accustomed to how he saw me and how he wanted me. I hoped never. It was far too much fun to see his inexperience level the playing field between us.
"All in good time Love," he smirked, playing along with me. He reached for his shirt and took it from my hands, tossing it aside. "We won't be needing that, unless you're cold?" he smirked.
"Nope" I assured him.
He took my hand and led me to the couch, motioning for me to sit down. I preferred his lap but I wasn't about to argue. It wouldn't take much touching from Edward to make me weak and dizzy again. I was much safer with the couch under me than my own legs. He slid in beside me effortlessly. "Now where were we?" he muttered, picking up my hand and laying it on his bare chest. "I think it was right about here."
If I thought his torso was something to look at, touching it was another thing entirely. My mind flooded with all of the ways I wanted to kiss it and all of the places I wanted to put my tongue. I settled for something more simplistic, running a finger down the center of his chest, past his ribcage, stopping just shy of the waistband on his pants. I wasn't at all sure it was a safe thing to do but I couldn't control my fingers as they slid into the sparse hair around his navel and softly tangled in it. I couldn't tear my eyes away from the patch of hair as I watched my fingers play, knowing what that hair inevitably connected to. I was completely turned on by it. My jaw was clenched tightly to keep my mouth from gaping, my teeth locked together in determination. I would have never guessed that hair would be my undoing.
At first my touch seemed to make him go more rigid but I knew I needed to be patient and allow him time to adjust to the sensation. I pondered the differences in what my touch felt like to his stony skin versus what his touch felt like to me and wondered if my touch could be anywhere as heavenly as his. I doubted it. When his breathing slowed and his tense muscles relaxed I allowed my hands to meander back up to his body, lightly tracing the ripples of his stomach along the way. It was hypnotic to watch his body work, the way his chest rose and fell with each breath and how each muscle flexed and contracted in response.
"You haven't looked at my face since you took my shirt off," Edward hinted, smiling smugly.
I blushed lightly. "Sorry, you're just so…magnificent." It seemed like such an idiotic way to express what he looked like but I was at a loss for a better word.
"You're not so bad yourself," he whispered, scooping me up and pulling me onto his lap.
This time I was the one to go rigid, caught up in a sudden rush of emotions and desire. For as thin as the fabric was between his chest and mine, I wanted nothing in between us at all. "This is harder than I expected," I mumbled.
"What is?" He looked at me worriedly.
"Being patient…taking things slow."
"I think impatience is a normal part of intimacy," he mused. "But it goes a little deeper than that for us."
I nodded, looking down, a little ashamed of myself. I promised myself I would not put pressure on Edward and like everything between us it was more difficult than it should have been.
"I want…I mean I would like to…" Edward was not one to struggle with his words and I began to worry something was wrong.
"Yes?" I interrupted.
"May I take this off?" He gave a little tug on the sheer fabric of my baby doll, seeming utterly calm now that he'd asked the question. I was a little shocked that he seemed so comfortable coming out and asking. It seemed, well it seemed too normal for us. I beat back the shock and smiled at him hoping he couldn't see my butterflies.
"Yes," I squeaked quietly. It was perfectly normal and natural to be nervous, or that's what I kept reminding myself.
"Bella," he whispered, "if you're not ready it's ok. Like you said yourself, we have all the time in the world. We don't need to rush this."
"I'm ready, just nervous," I admitted. I reached out for his hand and pulled it to me laying it in the centre on my chest just as he had done with mine.
He turned his attention to the baby doll. I watched as his eyes followed the edges of blue that hugged my body. He was looking for the clasp I guessed. I smiled at him as I felt his other hand slide up my back, his brow creasing in confusion when he felt nothing but smooth satin under his fingers.
"The bow," I whispered knowingly. It was right where I had placed his hand but I should have known he would try to complicate the simplest of things with assumptions. I moved his hand to the tail of the bow and demonstrated what happened when he pulled as I pushed his hand away from my body slowly. His eyes were glued to the bow as it became smaller and smaller with each inch of satin that he pulled.
I reminded myself to breathe, finding it more and more difficult to remain calm as I watched the bow disappearing just like Edward. A wave of panic rolled through me, rooted mainly in inexperience and modesty. The little satin getup that he was about to remove was pushing me up and securing me in all the right ways. It was a monumental line that we were about to cross, in my mind at least, but not a difficult one. I had complete trust in Edward. I knew he would never hurt me.
Edward pulled the last bit of satin through the knot and let the ribbon fall softly from his hand. I had purposely tied the bow using only two loops so it would be easily undone. The baby doll fell open teasing Edward's waiting eyes with a modicum of forbidden flesh. His eyes locked on to my bare skin and his mouth fell open with an audible gasp. I held still, unsure of his reaction. He was frozen in front of me for a few moments before he collected himself and reached out to me. His fingers were as light as feathers as they grazed the skin of my belly but it was still so much to feel his fingers on my stomach that I sighed loudly. He looked up at me and there was something there in his expression, in his eyes, that I didn't recognize but was sure I was reflecting back at him with my own eyes. It was more than lust, more than love, it was an asking and permission and an understanding that there was no going back once we connected.
I scooted off his lap and let the back of the couch support me. Edward waited for me to make myself comfortable and then slid in beside me. I nodded silently and watched as his hands moved confidently to the ribbons that dangled in the middle of my body. He pushed them aside softly, bunching the satin in his fingers as the baby doll slid off my body exposing all of me. His eyes quickly drank me in but darted up to mine after a brief moment. "You're so beautiful," he murmured.
I could only answer with a small smile and a blush, not trusting my voice to speak. His cool, strong hands moved to my breasts with the softest of touches and I knew I couldn't watch him touch me any longer. I had to close my eyes under the sensations that his fingers were creating. I bit my lip willing my control to stay in place but it was wavering like a flag in the wind. My breath was already coming in rapid pants as a result of absently holding my breath and Edward's touch. I was like a house of cards and one wrong move would send my patience and control to their destruction.
Since my eyes were closed I hadn't noticed Edward lean towards me so when his mouth closed around my nipple I gasped loudly. My hands flew into his hair and I yanked on it with all that I had. He moaned so loudly that I could feel his body vibrate against mine as the sound left his chest. I guess he liked the hair pulling as much as he liked the shirt fisting. The difference was this time I didn't care if I pushed him too far. I was falling, so far past the point of control that I couldn't even see the line any longer. I made one last feeble attempt to right myself.
"Edward," I panted, pulling his head up towards my face with my last ounce of self-control. "I'm failing miserably in the patience department and the control department is on battery back up and about to go into complete system failure."
He looked at me confused for a moment, his brain just as clouded with lust as mine was. Even my silly attempts to joke and diffuse my own unruly hormones and wild lust didn't get through. He ran his hands up my sides and my hips thrust involuntarily at him.
"Edward I can't find it in me to control myself any longer," I choked out between gasps for air. "It's too much. You're too much…I don't know how to find it in me to stop."
"I don't want you to stop Bella. Do you want to stop?"
I swear I'd never heard a better answer to a stupider question in my life. "Of course I don't want to stop. But in case you haven't noticed I've been very careful to let you lead and not react to all the delicious things you're doing to me."
His voice was rough and husky and very appealing to me in my current state of non-control. "As much as I'd like this to be perfect for us Bella, the nature of this particular trial is such that once it starts, it's just going to happen and no amount of control on either of our parts is going to stop it."
"The magnetic force," I mumbled.
"Exactly," he smiled. "So we should just relax and enjoy it. I don't want to rush into it. I figure that once it starts, it's going to happen so fast that the rushing will take care of itself all on its own."
I blinked disbelievingly at him. Did Edward Cullen just tell me that he was a fast finisher? And then almost like he could read my mind he answered my question.
"I'm not saying I'm not going to do my damndest to make it last, but some things are just out of my hands." His normally beautiful lopsided smirk went right past handsome and even surpassed drop dead sexy on its way to wickedly erotic. I knew that no matter what happened from this point onward I was going to enjoy myself because Edward had been hiding exactly how intense a sexual being he was and I was the lucky recipient of the surprise. This would definitely go down in history as the best gift ever given.
He kissed his way down my chest and back to my breast. Even with the constant reminders from my brain to breath I don't think there was enough oxygen left in the room to relieve my lungs. Every time any part of him came into contact with me breathing normally became impossibly more difficult. I pressed myself into his body, wishing he'd pin me to the couch so I wouldn't have the opportunity to misbehave and ruin what was coming with any indiscreet actions in a rush to the finish line. He moaned against my breast and while it seemed like a 'holy crap that feels good' sound part of me wondered if I'd done something wrong that caused him to make the noise. I pressed myself into him again and his moan followed, only louder and more pronounced this time. I dragged myself out of my black hole of selfish want for a brief moment to realize what I'd done in pressing myself into Edward's body. I had been so entirely wrapped up in what his touch was doing to me that I hadn't realized what being in such close contact with me had done to him. Edward was thoroughly aroused and I had been unintentionally pushing my hips into his erection. Admittedly recognizing his current condition was much more difficult given that his whole body was already as hard as stone, but I felt embarrassed that I hadn't realized before cruelly torturing him accidentally. However the embarrassment was quickly replaced by a new wave of lust and pleasure that I had been able to elicit such a primal reaction in him. I wondered if I hadn't given enough credit to lingerie. Surely it had to be less of the uncomfortable male-created crucifixion I had determined it to be and more of an astute instrument of manipulation used by only the wisest and keenest of women to get their partner to touch them as Edward was touching me now. I was going back to that shop at my earliest convenience to stock up. This was way too good to pass up.
"Sorry," I whispered throatily, trying to apologize for pushing up on him.
He chuckled mischievously and ran his tongue over my nipple, exploding every thought process in my brain and bringing me to an all new heightened state of arousal that heretofore had not been reached. I began to wonder just how far this man could take me beyond what I had imagined. Apparently my imagination was sorely hollow and superficial. I wasn't at all sure I could withstand every thing he could do to me but hoped to hold on long enough to give him the chance to try.
Without my permission my hands were in his hair again, tangling and tugging and rubbing with abandon. The rougher I was with his scalp, the more diligent and enthusiastic his efforts became. He worked my breast until my back was arching off the couch towards him and his only response was to slide his arm underneath me and pull me closer and add a little more tongue to his deeds. I would have loved to feel his teeth on my piqued nipple but thought better of asking, sure that nothing would shut him down faster than asking him to bite me. I tucked away the idea for another time.
He pulled back from me slightly and removed my hands from his hair with an evil glint in his smiling eyes. I watched him kiss a path down my torso, teasing my heated skin with his cool tongue. He stopped at my navel, purposefully blowing out his breath against my skin and watching me react. I contracted my abdomen as I sucked in a big gasp of air and blew it out in a heavy sigh. I was instantly relaxed for him. He somehow knew my body better than I did and amazed me for knowing how to relax me since he'd never touched my bare skin before.
His hands slid lower to cup the back of my upper thigh and floated slowly downwards in a breezy caress. The lightness of his touch assured me that he was in full control. I couldn't say the same for myself, as I was completely absorbed in his actions. He continued to kiss and lick his way down my body, even playfully tugging the waistband of my panties with his teeth. I'm pretty sure he wasn't prepared for the noise that left my throat, some strange moan, part purr and part meow but I was too turned on to care how it sounded. His once feathery grip on my thigh tightened and his mouth instantly skipped over my panties and moved on to my thigh, low on my thigh much to my dismay. I whimpered a complaint, which only elicited a chuckle from Edward.
I don't think there was an inch of me he didn't study. He traced the curve of my calves and the arch of my foot and the tender skin of my inner thigh. He kissed the bend of my knee and each one of my toes and every line and indentation made by my muscles. He was enthralled with the task of learning my body intimately. And like the glutton that I was I took every touch and every kiss greedily and coveted more, anxiously awaiting the next thing he would adorn me with.
When he began moving back up my body I felt the denim of his jeans brush my legs and decided it was time to return the pleasure. When Edward's mouth descended on mine I kissed him ardently, pushing my tongue into his mouth carelessly and felt nothing but pride when he groaned into my mouth. He pressed his body into mine and I returned his groan because I didn't want to be pinned to the couch now. Now I wanted to be free to return the amorous torture he'd just inflicted on me. So like the shrewd quick thinker I knew myself to be I decided not to play fair and pulled out the cheap shots. I pushed my hips off the couch and thrust them into his body without caution or restraint. I'm fairly sure that the garbled mess that was whispered into my mouth was a string of curse words and I smiled triumphantly. I'd never heard Edward swear before and the power of my ability made me feel smug. I repeated the hip thrust again, throwing him a little off balance and squirming out from underneath him. I didn't miss the irony in the fact that I had worked to be underneath Edward all night long and was now vacating said desired position in almost the same instant I'd finally attained it.
"Bella," he panted, trying to figure out what I was doing.
"It's time for your pants to come off Edward," I informed him cheekily. I slid off the leather and got on my knees, pulling him towards me.
"I can do it," he offered politely getting to his feet. I shot a warning glare at him.
"Don't move. This is my job." I smiled devilishly at him and slid my hands up to the waistband of his jeans. I heard his sharp intake of breath when my hands hit his skin. He'd paid so much attention to me that he'd lost his desensitization to my touch. I pulled back mentally and reigned in my control. I wanted him to enjoy what I was about to do, not cause him pain or make him lose control, well not over removing his pants anyway. I rubbed his navel softly, fingering his waistband gently and patiently, hinting at what I would do next but giving him time to adjust and relax and enjoy. After a few minutes I could see his shoulders relax and his breathing slow. I slipped one finger into his waistband and softly stroked his skin. His shoulders stayed relaxed even though he gulped hard. So far, so good. I moved my finger to his button and let it rest on the metal stud. I looked up at him to check his eyes. It was remarkably easier to control myself when his emotional well-being was at stake rather than mine. He opened his eyes and looked down at me granting me permission to continue. I slipped my finger between the fabric and the stud and lazily popped the button open. He stood above me, watching my actions and seemed no worse for the wear. I moved my hand to the tab of his zipper and again sought permission from him. His expression was noticeably strained so I paused and waited.
"Bella," he whispered. I was already looking at him so I just smiled and let him continue. "As soon as these come off things are going to get a bit dicey." He hesitated, searching for the right words to express his thoughts. "You're sure about this?" he asked earnestly.
"I'm sure," I whispered just as sincerely.
"I know I may have seemed controlled so far but that is going to change in a few moments. I'm strong enough to stop myself so I won't hurt you but I'm not at all sure that I'm strong enough to resist you if you're not in danger."
"I don't want you to resist me Edward. I just want you to love me." It was an honest answer. I wanted him. I wanted all of him but this was all as new to him as it was to me so I couldn't be unwilling to receive whatever he was capable of giving to me just as I couldn't be unhappy if he wasn't able to give everything I wanted. It wouldn't be fair to him or me. "Just love me Edward, the best you can."
He reached down for me and pulled me up to him. "I do love you, so much more than I ever thought myself capable of loving anyone."
"We're going to be fine Edward. I trust you. We'll find a way to make this work." I smiled reassuringly at him.
"You're right," he agreed softly. He nodded me his consent for me to continue and my hands moved back to his zipper. I pinched the tab between my fingers and lowered it slowly. The energy was dancing between us in an almost tangible way, exciting and enticing and electrifying the intensity between us. I slipped my hands inside the waistband of his pants and slid them slowly down to his hips. Suddenly, his hands closed around mine and stopped me. My eyes moved back up to his to check him.
"Take them both off," he said decidedly. I continued to search his eyes for some explanation and to be sure it was what he really wanted. "It's just easier…once our bodies make contact it's going to be the only thing either of us is thinking about." He was right and we both knew it.
I stepped back abruptly and moved my hands to my panties ready to take them off in support of his idea but again his hands closed around mine and stopped me.
"That will be my pleasure and I really don't want you to take it away from me." He was grinning from ear to ear, his infamous crooked grin and I was not about to deny him any pleasure he willingly wanted. He moved my hands back to his hips giving me the unspoken permission to continue.
For once my hands were not shaking although I almost thought they should have been given the gravity of what I was about to do. I was too caught up in anticipation to be nervous which was probably better. I slipped my fingers under the waistband of his boxer briefs tentatively. I allowed myself one deep breath to calm myself and then slid my fingers unhurriedly down his hips dragging his clothing along in my hands. I watched his skin appear voyeuristically, getting more and more turned on with each inch of fabric that my fingers pulled away. I had absolutely nothing to compare what I saw before my eyes with but the sight of him, all of him, took my breath away, like some perfectly proportioned, marble statue of a Greek god, adorned with all the beauty and perfection only the finest sculptor was capable of. I'm sure I was gaping. In fact I wouldn't be at all surprised if I was drooling. He was utterly flawless, beyond compare, unworldly…and he was all mine. My heartbeat stuttered at the realization and then stopped altogether for a moment before it picked up in triple time. For some reason that I did not understand, that I probably would never understand no matter how long I pondered it, this heavenly creature that stood before me wanted and loved me. I was suddenly overcome with emotions. I blew out a big deep breath and whispered, "I love you."
He pulled me to him and encircled his arms around my waist tenderly. "I love you too." He understood what I was feeling. He was feeling it too. I began to understand that it wouldn't just be a bodily connection that would be made tonight but an emotional one too because even though we'd loved each other for more than a year and a half, we had always been bound by restrictions. Here, tonight, there was freedom that allowed a deeper connection than either one of us thought possible. More than the magnetic force, more than the sexual connection, it was a joining of our spirits like we had never known before.
He gently released my waist and knelt down, placing his hands on my hips, and stared into my eyes, waiting. I smiled and nodded, ready for him to take away the last barrier that stood between us. I saw a range of emotions on his face probably similar to what had been on mine when our positions had been reversed. He hooked his fingers through the narrow waistband of my panties and gently tugged them down. His eyes widened, his breathing hitched and he hissed quietly before I stepped out of the panties and into the full inspection of his eyes. He wasted no time pressing his lips to my skin, starting at my navel and working downwards with his tongue. It was unfathomable to me that I could feel even more turned on than I already was but his tongue on my skin snaking slowly towards my center made me wetter than I would have thought possible without actually having his hands between my legs. I moaned against his tongue, my breath coming in gasps and all thoughts ceased in my head. I was one hundred percent hormones at that point, and I would have allowed Edward to do whatever he wanted to me as long as he didn't stop touching me.
He spread my feet apart with a gentle nudge and allowed his tongue to go even deeper. I gasped and threw my head back as he added a finger between my legs. He applied only a gentle pressure, pushing against my sensitive flesh but there was no resistance. My body was already so fully aroused that his finger slipped inside of me with ease. I bucked against his hand, ready to explode. My whole body was screaming for him.
"Edward, please," I moaned. I couldn't stop the want as it rained down on me in torrents, crushing my control and leaving me insatiable. I half expected him to tease me about my impatience or torment my body past the point of reason with his tongue but he did neither. He kissed his way back up to my face and persuaded me onto the couch again.
I balanced myself on the edge of the cushion and waited for Edward to sit down. When he did I slid off the leather and turned to face him. He looked up at me with curiosity and I was glad he couldn't read my mind. It was so much more fun to just explore our sexuality together. If he were in my head he would be too focused on what I was feeling and thinking to really enjoy himself. Tonight was about connection and emotion and love and pleasure and I needed him in the moment rather than deep in my thoughts. I pushed myself between his knees, spreading his legs open with my hands as I knelt down. I was not sure if he knew what I was about to do or if it was something he even wanted. I only knew that I wanted it and that it would be pleasurable for him.
Without hesitation I reached out to stroke his hardened length, softly at first, experimentally. I was curious how it would feel under my fingertips and wondered how my touch would feel for him. I wished I knew how he liked to be touched although I was pretty sure that any touching at all would be enough to bring him to climax tonight. The newness and rawness of the connection was arousing enough in and of itself. I closed my hand around him firmly and ran my fingers from base to tip slowly. The most delicious growl came rumbling out of his chest and distracted me for a moment. He had no idea how sexy he was or how strong an effect he had on me. I worked my hand up and down his length in a lazy fashion, just enjoying his reactions, the pleasure on his features, the tiny moans, the way his veins strained against the skin of his fisted hands. When his eyes closed and his rigid body relaxed into my touch I took him into my mouth the way I'd been aching too, swirling my tongue around his tip and closing my lips around him. I tried to move slowly and prolong the pleasure for him but I greedily wanted all of him. I took him as deeply into my mouth as I was able and teased him with my tongue on the way up and down his shaft. He was a mess of strangled control, his hands fisted into my hair pulling me towards him, his body rigid fighting the want that struggled to undermine his careful control, his face strained in response to my actions. And I was right there with him, feeling all of the same things but embracing the lack of control like a best friend, taunting and teasing him to cross the line with me.
"Bella," he whispered in a pleading tone. It fell on deaf ears. I had more things I needed to do before I planned on letting him distract me. I continued to use my tongue as I sucked my way up and down his length with greater speed but still by no means quickly. He muttered something incoherently that I was pretty sure was more cursing. I didn't even have time to smile at his swearing before his arms enveloped my body and he pulled me up into his lap. His smouldering topaz eyes stared at me and I melted under the weight of his gaze. He was ready, just waiting for the signal from me that I was ready too. I was in no position to say no nor would I ever be stupid enough to say it. I would always be his whenever he wanted me.
"Take me," I whispered with wide expectant eyes. There was no hesitation in his actions. He shifted his body out from under me and laid me back gently, never looking away from my gaze, his eyes clear and sure and full of love. With one hand still tucked behind my back cradling me, he repositioned himself on top of me, resting his weight on his forearms. He lowered his head to my mouth and kissed me softly, tracing my bottom lip with his tongue. Need building, my hands knit into his hair urging him on but he remained gentle and slow with his kisses. I tried to be patient and just enjoy the feeling of him pressed against me. The patience seemed like a great hardship but enjoying the feel of his skin against mine and the contact of his body pressed so close to me was a breeze.
His kiss became less gentle, more urgent, more eager. His tongue plunged into my mouth enthusiastically as he duelled with my tongue and fought for control. Whether it was for control over me or control over his emotions and restraint I wasn't sure. I simply wanted to return every bit of love he was giving back to him. He'd already given me more this night than I had right to expect.
His lips moved from mine and his head dropped to my shoulder where he resumed his kisses against my heated skin. Without my permission my head tipped back to expose my neck more fully to him, silently begging for his kiss. I didn't even realize what I'd done until his rigid body pinned mine to the couch and his fiery kisses dominated me. I'd just offered my bare neck to my vampire boyfriend. He was absolutely consumed, licking and sucking and kissing the tender skin of my neck. I froze, pulling my hands from his hair and dropping my arms onto the couch. I forced the air in and out of my lungs and prayed that I hadn't just blown everything.
At first he didn't even recognize that I had become completely still beneath him, so caught up in my neck that the rest of the world ceased to exist. I kept my shallow breaths as quiet as I could manage but my thudding heart seemed to be echoing off the walls. I kept time with my breathing and tried to remain calm as the seconds ticked by and Edward did not respond. I made one small whimper when his lips hit the most sensitive spot on my neck and even that didn't seem to pull him from his daze. The longer he was oblivious to my stillness the more worried I became.
"Edward," I whispered, bringing my hand up to touch his cheek.
He did not respond.
"Edward." My voice was louder and almost stern in an effort to break him out of his reverie.
"Bella," he whispered against my neck and kissed his way back up to my mouth again. I breathed a silent sigh of relief and kissed him back indulgently. Even though I had broken his concentration, the sense of urgency in his kisses had not dissipated. I wrapped my arms around his neck and pressed my body into his in response.
He shifted his weight to one side and let his hand drift down between our bodies, caressing my breast, stroking my side, tracing my hip, tickling my thigh. When his hand reached my knee his fingers stretched around it and cupped it, forcing it to bend into his hand. He hooked his hand around the bend and pulled my leg up my body. The newly created friction between my legs made me buck unconsciously as my body searched to increase the delicious pressure. He groaned into my mouth and pressed his hips into mine seeking his own pleasure but gave me exactly what I was looking for. I moaned loudly and bucked my hips again.
His hand deserted my knee and pushed between our bodies recklessly, almost franticly. We were past the point of no return just as Edward had predicted and we were both caught up in it, the need as strong as a hurricane, whirling and churning unpredictably. We would find no calm until we connected. His fingers sought my center, massaging and fingering my delicate flesh, testing to see if I was ready. He groaned against my mouth when he apprehended just how ready I was, my wetness covering his fingers completely. I felt his fingers move away from me and I whimpered a complaint, bucking my hips towards him. He pushed them back down and used his had to guide himself to my center. His tip pressed against my core but he hesitated pushing inside of me.
He pulled back from my kiss but his lips still lingered on mine. As the words left his mouth in a soft murmur his lips vibrated against mine in the most erotic way. "I want to go slowly. It might hurt you."
"Only for a second," I breathed before pressing my lips into his with deliberate desperation. And then I could feel him move inside of me, the most glorious pressure I had ever felt. The feeling radiated through my body and parts of my body constricted and strained while other parts relaxed and delighted in the warmth created. A quiet moan escaped my lips. I could not contain the pleasure.
He braced his weight with his forearms and began to move slowly in and out of me. He pressed very gently with each slow upward movement to gain further access to my body and spare me the hurt he presumed our close contact would cause me. I was impatient to feel all of him. I curled my raised leg around his body and pulled him towards me. He grunted quietly, dropping his head to my shoulder and burying his face in my hair. When he still didn't give me the satisfaction I was seeking I bucked my hips at him. He dropped his body on to mine to rest his weight against me and gathered me in his arms to press our bodies even more closely together. I pulled my other leg up, stroking his body with my foot until my leg closed around his ass like my other one. My body was as opened as I could position it, physically begging for all of him. He began his slow movement into me and I raised my hips off the couch to meet him, leaving him no other choice but to press into me fully. I gasped in gratification. He moaned in capitulation.
When he stilled for a moment I panicked, afraid he was fighting a more primal urge than lust but relaxed when I realized that he was savouring the feeling of the connection just like I was. Every curve and angle of our bodies seemed to fit together perfectly and the feeling of us pressed so tightly skin-to-skin, of him all around me and so fully inside of me was divine. It was everything I had imagined it to be and more.
Edward began to move in and out of me. His movements were very slow at first, gentle, controlled, and I was sure he was holding back trying to pleasure me. I tried to lay still and allow him his way, just enjoying what he was offering and asking for nothing in return. But just as I didn't like him holding back, he didn't like me holding back either.
"Bella breathe," he urged. I hadn't even realized I was holding my breath. I was just trying to behave.
"I'm fine," I assured him softly with humble eyes.
An admittedly bad liar, Edward didn't believe a word I uttered. He pressed a little harder into me, ground his hips into mine and thrust with more force than he had used up to that point. My eyes fluttered shut and I moaned loudly in response.
"That's more like it," he muttered smugly.
My eyes popped opened in shock and I stared at him with amazement. "I thought you wanted to make it last?" I questioned innocently.
"I want to make it pleasurable…for both of us. I'd rather have ten seconds of bliss than an hour of mechanical and lacklustre."
That was the beginning of the end for me. He knew how to get me to respond and even if I had wanted to remain detached and unaffected I couldn't have. And I didn't want to hold back. If he wanted everything I had to give I was more than happy to deliver it to him. With each thrust he pushed into me I pushed back, pressing my hips into his with equal force. I squeezed his body with my legs when he filled me. And when I wasn't completely consumed by his actions I ran my fingers through his hair and whispered loving words. I released the muted gasps and soft moans that he wanted to hear each time they arose. I held nothing back.
Edward was a selfless lover, but he was no angel. He was thoroughly enjoying his task, still holding back and trying to get me to orgasm like it was his gift to give. I wanted it, but I wanted it for both of us. I worked hard to get him to respond to me too. I pushed my hands into his hair and pulled lightly when his breathing became more laboured. I tilted my hips back as he thrust and took even more of him in. He seemed to like that trick and graced my ears with a feral hiss that echoed in my ears like liquid sex. I had found what I needed to get him to stop holding back and find his release. Again I tipped my hips back and he filled me with every bit of himself. He was transformed, insatiable, and I knew he wasn't coming back down to earth until he came.
His arms were around me, pulling me to him, wanting every bit of me pressed against him. Disconnecting our bodies to thrust felt like blasphemy. There was no rhythm in his hips as the bore down on mine furiously simultaneously burying himself inside of me and pulling me to him. His hands slid down my body, pulling at my hips but he couldn't get any purchase. They slipped around to my ass, cupping it and pushing it towards his thrusting hips and grunting. I just squeezed my legs around him and tilted my hips back and let myself fall. I was completely his, he was completely mine and in moments we would be one.
I could feel the build in my body. It started as a dull ache and morphed into an all-consuming want that manifested in hollow selfish tunnel vision. All of my movements continued as they had from the beginning, the soothing touches and hip tilts and thrusts and whispered words of love and pleasured moans, but it was sort of like being on auto pilot. All my brain was focused on was deliverance.
Edward was straining against his movements, using every bit of his control and patience to prolong the encounter. We both needed relief. I dropped my hands from his hair and let them wander downwards, finding and moving them into the hollow of his lower back. I whispered his name now, panting and gasping, begging and pleading for release. I tried to focus on him but I was so close it hurt. I was a mess, tense and lust-filled and aching. My fingers dug into his back absently, stretching down towards his ass and grabbing at whatever they could reach. I pushed his ass closer to me and thrust my hips at his when he moved. The intense friction pushed me over the edge. My world dissolved. I became a bundle of luscious nerves that constricted and vibrated with the sweetest surrender. The last thing I consciously remember doing was whispering, "Edward." And then I acquiesced into orgasm oblivion.
He was right behind me and called my name when he came. I could feel him pulling my body impossibly closer to him, his arms holding me tighter than he had ever allowed himself as his body tensed against mine. His release was not quiet like mine. His moans filled the room like music for my ears and it made my orgasm even sweeter.
And then we were still. The room was silent. There was no more panic, no more worry, no more fear. It was the two of us as one, connected in so many ways, breathing together, holding each other, and basking in the afterglow of what we had accomplished. When Edward pulled himself off of me I whimpered a complaint. I wasn't ready to let go of him yet and give up the attachment. He wrapped his arm around me after he settled on the couch and pulled my spent body towards him, grabbing a blanket from the back of the couch and covering our naked bodies. I knew he did it partly out of modesty and propriety. He was a gentleman. But more than that, he was forever Edward, always thinking of me, and he knew I would grow cold against his cool skin quickly. Rather than fight me and push the blanket between us like I'm sure he wanted to, he allowed me to stay snuggled into the side of his body and take what warmth I could from the blanket he provided. I was asleep in moments.
My eyes fluttered open sleepily, happily. I was pretty sure I had reached nirvana and there was no way I was leaving without a fight. I was still in Edward's arms, still snuggled up to his naked body with my own bare skin; my body was relaxed but still humming from Edward's love.
"Hi sleepyhead," he murmured as his deep voice vibrated in my ear in a very sexy way.
I blushed and tipped my head up to look at him. He was smiling down at me, every bit as happy as I was. "Sorry," I offered, "it was against my will…the sleep I mean."
"If I could have slept after that I surely would have," he assured me smugly. "But I was just as happy to watch you sleep even if it was only for a few minutes. Are you sure you don't need more?"
"More sleep or more sex?"
"Sleep, Bella," he laughed. "Not that your suggestion isn't a good one."
"Edward, you're incorrigible," I teased in mock horror.
"As are you," he asserted.
I shrugged. He was right. I couldn't deny it.
"And I wouldn't have it any other way," he assured me solemnly. I smiled at him in place of an answer, unsure of exactly what to say as I felt the conversation shift away from humour to something more serious.
Edward's hand came out to stoke my cheek softly and his voice was rough and emotional when he spoke. "I really don't think I deserve you but I know that if I spend my entire existence trying to pay you back for the gift you just gave me that I will forever be in your debt."
"I could say the same thing myself you know?" I insisted. "Just love me Edward. Love me for forever. That's all I've ever wanted."
"To think that I almost gave that up out of fear is the most cowardice thing I've ever done."
"No Edward," I sighed. "Stop it now. Everything you did was done out of love for me. You aren't allowed to put yourself down for it. Besides, we're here and we have each other and so much love to give. Concentrate on what is to come."
"I assure you that what is to come is not far from my mind." He smiled impishly.
"Did you enjoy yourself?" I wondered.
"Enjoy?" he asked surprised. "No, enjoy doesn't begin to cover what I felt. I assure you that loving you tonight was one of the most life changing actions of my life, second only to falling in love with you."
"Really?" I asked disbelievingly.
"Bella, could you not feel how much I wanted you?" His tone was so serious and compelling that I couldn't help but believe him. "Could you not feel my love every second we were touching one another? You are my life. You are everything I want to have and love and be."
"Thank you for loving me Edward," I whispered. "Not just tonight, but always."
"No Bella, thank you. Thank you for loving me and trusting me enough to let this happen." He pulled me a little more tightly into his body and smirked knowingly. I smiled back at him and he bent his head to my ear. "And thank you for the gift you wore over. It certainly was a means to an end."
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