Disclaimer: Stephenie Meyer owns the Twilight universe
Chapter 1: Forbidden Love
I don't care if it's not right
To have your arms around me
I want to feel what it's like -
Take all of you inside of me
I know that you're no good for me
That's why I feel I must confess
What's wrong, is why it feels so right
I want to feel your sweet caress
Rejection is the greatest aphrodisiac
-Forbidden Love by Madonna
The peacefulness of Isle Esme was in stark contrast to the conflict that was raging inside of me as the warm water of the ocean lapped at my back.
What I was about to do went against everything I believed. Yet I had promised to do it.
I should be on cloud nine, blissfully happy with my recent joining of my life to Bella's through marriage. Yet I was filled with dread.
Everything I had sacrificed, all that I had fought for and risked, including revealing my family's existence, was all balancing on my actions in the next few hours.
All because I wasn't strong enough to deny my emotions.
For vampires, whose physical being did not change with the passing of time, emotional being was everything. It's similar to when a human loses a sense and the other senses compensate… our emotional state compensated for our loss of physical state. So it defined us – ruled us.
Yet feeling was incongruent with our true lifestyle. To commit such atrocities against humankind necessitated one to disassociate from his or her emotions. There was no such thing as a conscientious serial murderer.
Yet this was where Carlisle had drawn his unwavering, uncompromising line. He refused to denounce his emotions, what he believed to be the only quality that separated us from animals. He wouldn't forsake his compassion. For once we did, as he believed, we would truly become the dead beings we resembled.
So I strived to follow his example. I lived my immortal life seeking to do what was right as a way to justify my unnatural, vulgar being.
However, the restraint and discipline it took to live the lifestyle, and challenges it posed, meant I had to be detached and separate. I functioned in civil society, but it was a life void of any substance. In a way, I was alive inside myself, yet dead to the world around me. An island.
Then I found Bella. Or, fate had her find me.
I tried to deny what fate had set before me. The opportunity... In fact, I mangled it, ran from it, and even tried to end my existence to avoid it. But in the end, I was not strong enough physically... or emotionally... to stay away from her.
How could I? With her the future held hope, promise and, maybe, even happiness. For the first time in my infinite life, I could connect with someone. There could be actually be meaning to the eternal blurring endless of days and nights.
However, reconciling our differences almost cost us everything. In her human form, Bella could never truly understand what I felt for her. My love for her was all-consuming. It was everything I was… and could be. My love for her defined me. She became more precious than anything else; my survival depended on her frail human life.
Hence, my tenuous position. Her frailty versus my strength. Expressing my love physically could in essence destroy me.
The sound of water running in the house distracted me from my embattled thoughts. I listened to the shower running and Bella rifling through the suitcase Alice had packed for her. I had seen in Alice's mind the items she had packed - and intentionally not packed - for Bella. My poor girl. Bella took pleasure in the simple things – jeans and a t-shirt, oversized shirts for pajamas. Now she had to deal with a suitcase full of revealing French lingerie. Not that I minded, but I knew Alice would have to deal with Bella's wrath when we got home.
In contrast to Alice's bold actions, I had chosen Isle Esme to start our new journey together hoping it would ease the transition. We could be ourselves. Spending time together with no observers, no unsolicited thoughts and opinions of others, and no curfews.
And so I waited for my wife in the warm ocean water. The water would warm my icy flesh and cool hers. With any luck, we could embrace and pretend we were truly one in the same. But seriously, who was I kidding? I still had to be disciplined…use restraint, for her safety.
Could Bella ever appreciate and understand that for what it was?
My feet shuffled in the fine sand as my anxiety rose to a crest. I knew what she was expecting from me. I promised it and I wanted it, too. She had resented the ground rules I placed on our physical relationship and my relentless enforcement of those rules. Did she know I wanted the physical closeness and intense passion just as much as she did? Maybe more, after all, I have gone without physical pleasure for a hundred years! Not like I ever planned on celibacy being part of my life. As a young, human man I had fantasized about attaining manhood through the glory and sacrifice of war. Then I would become a man worthy of a woman's love and desire. But I never got that chance. As a vampire, it took too much focus and restraint to live the life Carlisle had lain out before me. Passion and sex were not things I had the luxury of exploring. The benefits just could not justify the risks.
However, on my wedding night, I now saw that this inexperience left me at a terrible disadvantage. I needed to perform as a husband, yet I only knew the basic mechanics of the act.
In fact, I had been so desperate for information on my dilemma of inexperience that on the night of my bachelor party, I had actually sought sexual advice from my brothers. We had spent the night hunting big game. Since the house would be full of humans for the wedding day, it was a necessary exercise….as well as fun. In between kills, we sat on an outcropping of rocks looking over the river. It seemed like a good time to bring up the subject.
I didn't really expect any useful advice from Emmett. I had only hoped I could find a tidbit of something I could use out of all his predictable free-wheeling sex-speak, not to mention the graphic scenes of him and Rose I would have to witness through his thoughts.
From Jasper, I expected that pained look he got whenever he had to decide whether to join in Emmett's raunchiness or let his more "sensitive" side show.
As I had predicted, they did not disappoint…
"Seriously, dude, you are in for some major trouble. Isn't sex with a human forbidden by some vampire code?" He let out a laugh, "Unless of course it's the prelude to a hot meal." He gave me a light-hearted shove.
His words miss the mark, and I rankled at the disrespect they implied at our union. Jasper quickly inserted himself between us.
"I think Emmett's less than perfect choice of words implies that taking your wedding night slow might be a better course of action than rushing into it," Jasper smoothed.
"Maybe you should have tried the sex thing before marrying her?" Em continued. "I'm telling ya, you should have taken Tanya up on her offer. She wanted to jump your bones in the worst way. Then you would have gotten some real experience and released some of that pent up angst…
"Hey!" his face brightened with a sudden idea. "You know, it's not too late to make a run to Seattle….it's not a bachelor party without some ladies of questionable morals."
Jasper rolled his eyes. "Great, let's get our under-sexed little brother a very breakable hooker, excellent idea." Then Jasper thought, ditch him and I'll try to give you something to work with….
Once Emmett scrambled off after his favorite scent, reminding me of how easily a crow is distracted by shiny objects, Jasper had tried his best to make me feel more at ease with my approaching honeymoon.
"Don't let Emmett's cavalier attitude toward sex fool you. Once, when he let his defenses down, he confessed to me that he and Rosalie had it tough in the beginning. Of course he was immediately attracted to her, but after her last human experience, it wasn't just a matter of attraction. He actually had to take it slow with her. She was very traumatized by the sexual assault that, for all intents and purposes, ended her life. Neither of them will ever talk about it, but it took time for him to rebuild her trust and to get her to the point where she wanted and liked to be touched intimately.
"The way Emmett figured, he had plenty of time and the prize was worth waiting for. Now we have to keep their room on the ground floor…Believe me, it's not fun when the plaster on your ceiling falls on you whenever they decide to fornicate!"
We allowed a moment for chuckling, thinking about Rose and Em's zeal for sexual escapades, but then Jasper became serious. "For Alice and I it's, well, our sexual relationship is more...spiritual. But you and Bella will find your niche also."
Then he cut to the chase, "Listen, bro, I know you're unsure, but I feel the love you and Bella have for each other. I know you won't hurt her – isn't that your real concern?"
Before I could answer, Emmett found us – he was sporting a grizzly bear scalp on his head, ending our conversation.
I had also approached Carlisle about what to expect on my honeymoon. He was my creator and I wanted to make him proud of me, and I looked up to him as a role model as well as a father. But, with that said, I certainly didn't want the details I had sought from Jasper and Emmett. Who wants to think of their father and mother in that way? So I stuck to the more clinical questions with Carlisle.
I had asked him what love-making was like for our kind. He had assured me that everything on my body would work the same as it would for a human male, and that it would be very pleasurable. However, as I suspected, he advised me to monitor my physical reactions. Passion and power he said go hand in hand, and that may not be a good thing for Bella. Something, he added with a sly grin, he was glad he didn't have to worry about with Esme. Definitely TMI….
Bella's almost unexpected light footsteps on the sand broke my flashback. She was finally approaching! I could hear her breathing and heart beat – irregular. Was that from the to-be-expected wedding night jitters? Or did she fear the result of our union as I did? Not knowing made me feel even more insecure, tense.
Even with all the questions I had asked, I still had no idea what to expect – physically or emotionally. Was there even an answer out there to be found? After all, there had never been a honeymoon like this one.
But as she slowly made her way to me, I took in a deep breath and tried to accept this moment for what it boiled down to…two young, inexperienced lovers with no idea what to anticipate.
I only hoped our love would get us through whatever followed next….
Without turning, I reached for her hand as she approached behind me and we waded into deeper water.
End Notes: I began writing this before I knew about fanfiction because, well, I couldn't stand the fade-to-black honeymoon after reading all those books! It then became a continuing venture and exploration of Edward's emotions and motives...
The first few chapters are shorter, setting up the conflict and resolution that Edward experiences in later chapters - so stick with it - I think you will be surprised by what was truly going through his mind.
Bella's POV is next since we did not get a view into her emotions on that first night.