A super massive sparkly THANK YOU to Jess for offering her awesome beta services!
As always, I do not own Twilight.
I dreamt of an ocean.
The scene around me started as an angry storm, dark and heavy with rain, and I stood on a rapidly receding beach. The water swirled around rising and falling, always moving, leaving marks in the earth and rock, forcing me to take a few steps back. The endless water charged in unceasing waves, crashing against cliffs in the distance, pushing and eroding all in its path; until the rain stopped and the water calmed in what seemed to be daybreak. The atmosphere became serene; the air warmed and became humid. The rough waves were a fleeting memory as I sat, the sand powdery beneath me, which I took in my hands and let fall through my fingers. Then I watched the ocean before me from my protected little cove as it changed and evolved right before my eyes. It was as though time was unfolding before me in an abstract time table in the form of weather...
Tides rose and fell. Waves surged past breaking points. Wind came in hurried gusts but always shifted into gentle breezes. For every storm, there was a glorious break in the clouds. The sun didn't make grand entrances. It may not have been forceful, but it was steadfast. Every morning it rolled up and stretched its arms slowly and welcomed a new day.
The scenes started changing quicker, becoming flashes in the ever changing horizon. Sometimes I saw never-ending beaches where waves rolled over my toes, and sometimes I saw rocky bluffs and furious waves.
I took in everything around me and my mind raced at the possibility that all of this was real, or it would be… For the briefest of moments I was focused on what would come of this lucid dream, but I continued to be distracted by the ever changing surroundings.
I let my thoughts go and I ran.
I ran down beaches and giggled as the water flew up around me. I swam through massive waves and I screamed into the hard wind that blew against me. I stood atop the cliffs that had once been so far off in the distance with my hands on my hips watching as the sun began its ascent into the sky and then I heard Edward's voice. Something he said to me had pushed itself to the forefront of my mind.
"I love watching you evolve."
I grinned at the memory. I laughed at the simple meaning.
Those two things that meant so much to me because physically, I cannot do them, and yet here I was doing just that. It was exhilarating...
I found myself sitting on a patch of sand, an atoll so similar to the place not far from Isle Esme where Edward and I had explored each other completely.
I closed my eyes and wished he was here with me.
"Bella…" His voice was a whisper.
I smiled knowing he was right next to me, in our bed, in our home.
The scene around me gradually faded into a gentle whirlwind of pale colors and then disappeared completely. When I opened my eyes I saw Edward lying next to me, Radiohead playing softly in the background.
It was the perfect way to wake up.
"This is the last one right?" Jasper smirked at Emmett.
"God, I hope so." Emmett replied, getting frustrated with his bow tie.
Alice swooped in and fixed his tie in seconds before smiling up at him. "It will be."
I flashed her a grin and we rushed upstairs to finish getting ready.
That afternoon Rosalie and Emmett were married for the last time. The ceremony was held at a small church in Forks where simple vows were exchanged, and afterward we gathered for a small reception at their new home. Esme had rented a small, flowing tent, which stood in the back yard adorned with silver fabric and twinkling lights. There were flickering candles and white calla lilies strewn about each table. Emmett and Rosalie enjoyed food and champagne while Edward played piano and the rest of us took turns holding Lily. Alice had made her a beautiful little white and silver dress with matching silver slippers and she even managed to find a miniature tiara which sat upon her tiny head.
It was a simple gathering, a beautiful celebration of family topped with soft music and dancing.
"May I cut in?" Emmett asked, standing next to us, his hand extended to me. I nodded and kissed Edward's cheek. At first Emmett was quiet as we danced, his concentration focused on not stepping on my toes.
I giggled and he shot me a look. "Sorry, Em. You are just too cute like this."
He smiled at me, his dimples shining. "Yeah well, I don't have the luxury of immortal grace anymore. You'll have to bear with me if I step on your feet. And don't call me cute, I prefer handsome or smoking hot."
We laughed and he pulled me closer to him, his arms holding me in a hug. "Thank you," he whispered. "I feel like I should say more, but there is nothing that could describe how I feel about my life right now. Look over there, Bella." He motioned to our family; everyone was gathered around Rosalie, who had Lily in her arms. She looked so beautiful in her simple white wedding dress, incredibly comfortable with a baby in her arms. She looked so happy.
"That is my fairy tale right there." His smile grew. "You gave that to me. Thank you for being my own personal fairy godmother."
I playfully slapped his arm. "Don't call me fairy god mother. I prefer Bella or smoking hot goddess." We smirked at each other and continued making fairy tale jokes.
Esme was holding Lily, smiling down at the precious child in her arms, even as she began to cry. "She needs to be changed."
Edward reached for her. "I'll get it." He made quick work of the changing and walked right past us and over to the piano. He sat with Lily cradled in his left arm while playing a soothing little tune with his free hand. She stopped crying as soon as he started to play, and his grin was massive. "She loves her Uncle Edward," he said as he kissed her head softly. She slept in his arms as he played. My stare was fixated on the the two of them; Edward glowing as he delved into her dreams, losing himself in the simplicity of her mind and the pure peace she exuded.
Not too long afterward, I felt Edward's hand in mine, leading me out of the tent and toward the forest.
"Where are we going?" I asked, already knowing he wanted alone time. I could feel the need in his touch.
He turned his head slightly and looked down at me. "Somewhere quiet." His replied, eyes flickering toward our family.
We didn't run far. I let Edward lead run ahead of me, finding him by scent near the river. I stepped forward and put my hand on his shoulder, feeling a lingering sadness floating around him.
"Does it ever make you sad?" He asked. "That we can never have that…"
I sighed and brought my arms around his torso, squeezing him. "No."
He pulled away, taking my hands in his as he turned to look at me curiously. "Really? It doesn't bother you at all?"
"No." I ran my fingers down his jaw and stroked his cheek. "I've never longed for a child, never had that racing maternal instinct. It's not something I ever really thought about. Not until Rose…" I leaned in, kissing his neck and whispering, "I didn't realize how this would affect you."
He took in a deep breath. "Neither did I." He laughed to himself. "I'm sorry. I know it's silly, but I feel jealous."
"Edward, you will be the best uncle ever. You'll spoil her rotten. We all will." I smiled up at him. "I know that we haven't talked about it, but I know that we will be a part of Lily's life. We still need to work out the details, but we will be around to watch her grow up and you will teach her how to play piano. She is going to love you. She already does."
He pulled me into a hug and breathed deeply into my hair. "I love you. I wish I could give you a daughter or a son. You would be such a wonderful mother."
I shook my head. "I feel too young, too carefree and entirely too selfish to have a child." I snickered. "Besides, who needs a child when you have a newborn for a wife?"
He laughed, "You are anything but selfish, and you are hardly a newborn."
"I'm not so sure about that. I feel like a newborn at the moment." I said while trailing my fingers up his shirt.
"Hmmm… Are you hungry, love?" He tilted his head forward and raised an eyebrow.
"Oh yes, I am absolutely ravenous," I said while unbuttoning his shirt, pushing aside the fabric and pulling him into me. His signature crooked grin crept onto his face and his eyes burned into mine.
We had been hunting well. His eyes were melted topaz, light, and speaking volumes about his mood. Playful, yet sharp, dangerous, yet dazzling. His eyelids closed and he moved forward, pressing his forehead to mine. He squeezed me, alleviating the space between us and I smiled into his shoulder. My tongue traced his collar bone and up his neck while my hands ran down his hips around the hem of his pants and I waited for him to respond.
His hard intake of breath sent my fingers to unbutton his pants, pushing down the fabric and stroking him softly. His hands trailed up my back and briefly into my hair before he rid me of my dress and leaned away, his eyes raking down my body. His fingertips trailed between my breasts and slowly past my stomach. "I miss the jungle," he whispered. "The humidity, the mist... the way it pooled on your skin and made you slick."
His hands slid around to the small of my back, his grip hardening on my skin; our embrace suddenly, tremendously intense, a swirl of heavy emotions and equally heavy desire was coursing through me. My lips hovered over his neck and I chuckled lightly at my raging libido.
"Something funny, Mrs. Cullen?"
I peeked up at him through my lashes and ran my fingertips over the back of his neck. "Yes... Us leaving the wedding to have a quickie in the woods."
He raised an eyebrow. "Who said anything about being quick?" He leaned down and whispered, "I plan on taking my time with you."
Jasper had been typing away on his laptop, burying himself in research "I'm thinking east coast. It's been a while since we've spent any time on that side of the U.S. We've got Mt. Washington, New Hampshire; Binghamton, New York; and Burlington, Vermont all with over two-hundred-sixty cloudy days per year on average."
For two weeks, he and Carlisle had taken residence in the dining room mapping out potential locations to move. They spoke of various places on the east coast of the country, scouting out places with heavy cloud cover.
"Any luck finding positions in the local hospitals?" Jasper asked.
"RN's are needed at Upper Connecticut Valley Hospital, no positions available for physicians there, but their Director of Critical Care Unit position is still open at Weeks Medical Center…" Carlisle grimaced. He didn't want the Director position because that involved very little patient care. "I was hoping for an attending position."
My eyes wandered to Edward. He had been quiet, as had I. He was next to me on the couch, his head in my lap while he absently played with his wedding ring. I placed my hand on top of his and gazed at our rings side by side, tokens of our commitment. I watched as Edward glided his fingers delicately over my engagement ring; his mind sweeping with memories of his mother, her long bronze hair whipping around as they played together on a beach, the ring on her finger sparkling in the fierce sunlight. I sighed and ran my fingers through his hair.
You look just like her.
He smiled and turned his head to kiss my thigh. It's the hair.
I closed my eyes and embraced the comfort of the here and now; taking in every sensation and locking it away in my brain to keep me always, to ground me. Edward's body was still but serene, his arm haphazardly draped over my stomach. He had a goofy smile on his lips as he simply lay on me. He felt it too.
We succumbed to that perfect moment and stayed wrapped up in each other on the couch, ignoring the others as they flitted around the house. Everyone but us was focused on where we go from there.
I had a slight feeling of guilt because I hadn't helped in any way or even offered an opinion. I ran my finger over the shell of Edward's ear. "Should we be, uh... helping them?"
"We could," he replied and kissed my thigh again before looking up at me. "Do you want to be part of the process?"
I sighed again. "Honestly... I don't really want to move from this spot, but I feel like I should."
He scooted up and put his head on my chest. "Move if you must, but please know that no one will care if you stay right here. We will have many more moves and plenty of opportunities for you to make decisions. And... if you move then I can't do this." His hands slide up beneath my shirt, his finger over my nipple. I groaned.
I heard Jasper chuckle from the dining room. Edward rolled his eyes. "But that would leave the door wide open for teasing."
We stayed on the couch and yes, Jasper did tease us but I couldn't manage to pull myself from that spot. Not for hours. Eventually my curiosity got the best of me and I did stray from the couch, wandering to the former dining room, which Jazz was now calling 'The War Room.'
He gave me a few things to keep me busy, which I quickly completed and then found myself on iTunes, making some purchases for my iPod.
Jasper caught me and shook his head. "I thought you wanted to help…"
"I do want to help." I groaned and sat down in the chair next to him. "Give me something to do. Put me to work."
Jasper smirked. "You are such a little liar. You have absolutely no interest in this."
I smacked his shoulder. "That is not true. It's just… Aside from very recently, I haven't done a whole lot of traveling. I mean… Every place you suggest seems good to me and you have come up so many suggestions that making a choice seems kind of daunting."
He laughed. "You feel daunted by this? You can move yourself half way around the world with your mind, hear people's thoughts, change their emotions, have visions of the future, levitate Emmett with ease and put Carlisle to sleep with little to no effort, but choosing where you want to live for the next five to seven years is a challenge for you? Really?" He shook his head again.
"Shut up and tell me what else you need done."
We sat together at the dining room table and I listened to him go on about the places on the east coast that he was looking into; cloudy places near mountains and forests with plentiful wildlife. He talked about how the landscapes differed in that part of the country, as well as the animals.
"If we decide to go to school, I vote for college. There are quite a few to choose from in the immediate area." Jasper said with a hint of annoyance in his voice. "The real challenge will be finding a position for Carlisle."
"If?' I asked.
"Yes, If." He replied, leaning back in his chair. "You don't want to go do you?"
"It's not that I don't want to go… " I shrugged, knowing he could sense my hesitation. "It's just... I 'm feeling so at ease right now. I don't want it to end. It took great effort to even move from the couch."
"Don't feel obligated to help. We don't care if you simply come along for the ride. I'm actually really into this." He waved his hand around, motioning to the laptops and various papers strewn out over the table. "I am usually the nonpartisan, following Alice where ever she goes. This is the first time that I have ever been this involved. I find myself really enjoying the planning. I feel like I'm in my element here and the fact that everyone is trusting me to do this is... nice."
He ran his fingers through his hair nervously. "So... Are you and Edward coming with us?"
I blinked in response to his question. "Yes."
He laughed. "Sorry, I thought perhaps you two would go back to the island."
He looked embarrassed and a little smug too. "I can feel how anxious you get whenever we broach the subject of moving away. I just wanted to put it out there that no one would hold it against you if you wanted more alone time with Edward. Seriously, no one would even be surprised." He winced slightly. "I have a bet going with Emmett on whether or you'll join us in a mundane college experience or..." He hesitated. "You'll take a little time off from real life; go off the grid so to speak."
I pondered for a moment over what he was saying; I had thought about it, but I didn't realize anyone else had. I hadn't even really considered the option of not moving with the rest of the family, but obviously Jasper had put some thought into it, or maybe Alice had. I wondered what she'd seen. I found myself somewhat annoyed at the fact that they were making bets over it? I raised an eyebrow before responding. "And which one did you bet on?"
He smiled innocently. "You know... Alice and I have a house in Costa Rica. We have been known to take off for months at a time when we feel the need."
He hadn't answered my question. "And you think that is what I need?"
He smiled. "Undoubtedly."
I idly wondered if he was just trying to win the bet, but I knew he spoke the truth. I could not deny that I was craving nothing more than Edward and I alone on a deserted island. I leaned back and exhaled. "You're right, I want to take Edward back to Island Esme immediately and I want to be greedy and keep him there for as long as he can stand me."
He snickered, "I don't think he could ever tire of you. You could end up on that island forever."
I laughed, relishing the idea of unending time with my husband. I groaned internally at the tiny part of me that yearned for the normalcy that goes along with going to college. I had yet to become jaded with school; I could actually learn, I could learn a lot, and I didn't think it would seem mundane to me, but even so... College was not what I wanted yet.
Jasper closed his laptop. "Let me ask you this..." He leaned toward me. "I hope you don't mind me prying... What did you see? When you slept?"
I brought my knees up close to my chest and wrapped my arms around them, taking a breath I said, "Change, I saw change."
He leaned back into his chair and smirked. "I'm going to win this bet."
Edward challenged me to a game of chess. We sat at the end of the dining room table amusing Jasper who was still engrossed in research. Edward had been thinking about his next move for two minutes, not that I was reading his thoughts. We had agreed before the game, no cheating. He raised his head and looked at me with an amused expression, one that I recognized immediately.
"Stop that." I scowled at him, knowing he was trying to read me. "Cheater," I mumbled under my breath.
He chuckled and leaned over to kiss me and whispered, "Sorry."
Jasper snickered and shook his head. "I can't believe you tried to cheat against your wife. Tsk Tsk, Edward. Rule number one, you do not cheat against your woman, not when she can withhold sex." He looked right at me and cocked his head to the side. "If she so chooses."
I pulled back and tapped my finger on my chin as if I were seriously considering it.
Edward sighed and ran his fingers through his hair. "Thank you for planting that seed, Jazz. Really."
Jasper rolled his eyes and then looked at me curiously. He thought to himself, Edward has nothing to worry about. She wouldn't be able to go too long without... They are just insatiable right now.
I conceded his point by nodding and Edward burst into laughter. I opened my mind to him.
He's right. I could never deny you.
He took my hand kissed it gently while silently rejoicing in my admission. He slid the chess board away and leaned across the table toward me. Are you?
Memories of our time on Isle Esme crossed his thoughts. Insatiable?
I looked deep into his eyes. For you... Always.
Jasper kicked us both out of the room. We took a shameless exit and ran until we came to the meadow. Both of us walked slowly, feeling the grass beneath our bare feet and taking in everything around us, scrutinizing every last detail and etching them into our memories before we left it behind. We basked in the warm sun, letting its subtle warmth on our bodies remind us both of the South American sun. Edward kissed up and down my collar bone while his hands drew circles on hips. "I'm not ready for this to end." He murmured in between kisses. "I need you closer, much closer. All the time."
I threw my arms around his neck and kissed him hard, licking his bottom lip before pulling just far enough away to look into his eyes.
Our communication was silent, each letting our thoughts wander the other's mind while we made lazy afternoon love. Our decision was most definitely mutual. He may have even wanted it more than I, but there was no need to discuss it any further. We were going back to Isle Esme.
I chased Edward toward the house and this time he didn't hold back. I never stood a chance of beating him. I finally broke through the trees into our yard to find Edward leaning against the house and motioning for me to come to him. He took my hand and led me around the side. As soon as we turned the corner, I spotted Carlisle next to the garage leaning against a car I didn't recognize. He smiled as we approached and I took a moment to check out the automobile. It was like nothing I had ever seen, and what had peaked my interest were the windows. The windshield, side, and rear windows were all one piece of glass that flowed into one another giving me a perfect view of the inside, and the top too, creating one hell of a sun roof. The body was white and silver and low to the ground. It looked sporty but futuristic. I wondered how fast it could go.
Carlisle grinned and stepped forward, putting his arm around my shoulder. "What do you think?"
"What is this?" I asked.
He chuckled. "It is a BMW Vision. Do you like it?"
"It's… I've never seen anything like it." I stepped toward it running my finger along the glass on the passenger side window. The trees and sky were reflecting off of the roof, but I could see inside the lower window. It looked like a cockpit with leather interior and gleaming back lit buttons on the dash, just waiting to be pushed. "Is it fast?"
"Zero to sixty in four point eight seconds with a top speed of one hundred and fifty miles per hour." He replied, and then Edward came up from behind me and looked over the exterior before he reached down for the handle on the door.
"Not fast enough." Edward said with a grin. He lifted the door upward instead out like the wing of a bird.
"Where did you get this?" Edward asked as he inspected the interior.
Carlisle grinned. "Do you remember the contributions we made for Brake Energy Regeneration technology?" Edward nodded in confirmation.
"This car has them." Carlisle walked around, stepping in front of us and kneeling down next to the tire. He looked up at me. "As you know, Bella, Edward and I have many an investment in harnessing alternate power sources to preserve fossil fuels. A few years ago we invested, and I conducted research on a brake system that would generate energy. You see, when coasting or applying the brakes, the electric motor acts as a generator and feeds power to a battery within the car. The electric energy developed in this way is therefore captured without any additional consumption of fuel through the principle of Brake Energy Regeneration. Energy wasted on the brakes of a conventional car is thus saved within the new power system for subsequent use in driving the car."
He looked up at Edward. "It took quite a bit of convincing before BMW agreed, but it was our donation that made the research possible. The least they could do was let me have a little fun with one of the prototypes."
"Prototype?" I asked, shaking my head in surprise.
"It is a hybrid, a concept car actually. It won't be available for public sale until 2013." Edward said before asking Carlisle more questions about turbo diesel engines and electric motors and horse power. I tried to listen but was distracted by the look of the car itself- sleek and shiny, it had a bit of that same sexiness that Edward's Vanquish had, but it felt more laid back. I liked it.
I turned to Edward and Carlisle who both stopped speaking and looked at me. "Well?" Edward asked.
"What?" I replied.
"Don't you want to drive it?" He raised an eyebrow.
"Oh, sure. If it's OK with Carlisle." I replied and they both laughed at me.
Carlisle fished a set of keys out of his pocket and tossed them to me before taking my hand and leading me to the driver side door. I was about to step inside when he stopped me by gently touching my shoulder. "Happy birthday, Bella," he whispered, stepping away. "Enjoy the car. It's yours."
"I'm buying you a faster car." Edward mumbled as I approached ninety miles per hour.
"No, you're not. I like this car." I was barely paying attention to the road, preoccupied by the elongated windows giving me access to uninterrupted view of our surroundings rushing past us from inside the car. It reminded me of running. Edward was busy picking out music and fiddling with the various illuminated buttons and knobs before he sat back and just watched the world stream past us.
"This is really something, not as fast as I 'd like, but still... It's brilliant." He laughed. "So very distracting. Dare I say it scares me to think of a human driving this. It would be so easy to get sidetracked from watching the road."
We drove in silence; Edward had closed his eyes and was tapping his fingers against his legs in time with the music. His hands rested in his lap, only inches from mine, yet much too far away for my liking. From the corner of my eye, I noticed his relaxed posture and slight smile on his lips. He looked as beautiful as he always did and I mirrored his smile and breathed deeply, trying to take on the lightness of his mood.
It hit me then, an overwhelming need to touch him. I reached out and took his hand in mine and watched as his smile grew and his body shifted toward me. My fingers tingled with his touch and I sighed, relishing the comfort of the contact. My need was rising, his hand in mine was not enough. I needed more. I pulled over quickly, jerking the wheel sending dust flying into the air around us. I was out of my seat and on top of him in a flash, crushing myself against him, my needy hands clutching onto him.
"Are you OK?" he asked wrapping his arms tightly around me.
"I'm sorry." I whispered.
He pulled back, with a puzzled expression he asked. "What on earth are you apologizing for?"
I couldn't move, my body anchored onto his as my breathing became heavy. I struggled to verbalize what I was feeling, but instead I buried my head in his neck and breathed in his scent attempting to gain some sort of calm.
"Hey..." He whispered, his hands drifting to my face. "Look at me, Bella."
He guided my chin upward and looked in my eyes cocking his head to the side. "What's wrong?"
"I... I don't know. I feel overwhelmed by... Well, everything."
He smiled again and brought my head back to his neck. He ran his fingers through my hair and simply held me. I felt like I could cry, but not in sadness, in something unexplainable. A myriad of emotions was bubbling in my chest, spreading throughout my body; joy and elation mixed with apprehension and a odd sense of anxiety engulfing me. Edward cradled me and rocked me slowly. I felt dependent of his touch, and yet it was as though I wasn't close enough to him. I felt helpless to the unexplained surging need within me.
He spread his hands over my back and massaged. "Please... Let me in." He said in a begging whisper.
It was then that I realized that I had closed myself off to him. My shield subconsciously erected itself in some kind of self preservation mechanism.
"Please..." He pleaded.
His voice ripped through my fear and I felt my mind expand. The tightness in my chest ceased as I let him take in everything I was feeling. He gasped at the intensity and shivered in my arms. Our foreheads were pressed against each other's and I felt as though my chest was cracked wide open. Involuntary memories traipsed through my mind.
Victor turning me.
Newborn rage and bloodlust.
Starving in a vain attempt to wash away the aching guilt.
Edward carrying me through the forest of Forks.
My bonding with the Cullen family.
Radiohead lyrics in an underwater sanctuary.
Edward touching me, kissing me, teaching me how to play piano, and breaking my notions that I was nothing but a killer.
Finger painting the walls of my room with Esme.
Laughing and dancing with Alice and Rosalie.
Learning to control my thirst, learning to live again in a world I thought was beyond my grasp.
Acceptance from a family that I thought I could never have.
My black eyes turning gold.
Denali Alaska. Tanya, Eleazar. My gift...
A fairy-tale meadow, a fairy-tale wedding in Paris.
Death and life emerging from my fingertips.
Rosalie. Emmett. Lily.
A searing love that had managed to happen in a whirlwind of events and within months... I felt helpless to the surging need rising within me: a need for something unexplained and daunting.
Edward spread his hands on my back and continued to massage me, his touch calming me and compelling me to be closer to him. My skin burst into a sweet burn where his fingers wandered and danced on my skin. He thought about my last dream and then brought his lips to my ear. "It's almost dawn and the waves are receding. Now is the time where the sun will begin its ascent, and when it reaches its highest point in the sky, we will be so warm. Hot under the Rio sun."
He laughed softly and contemplated leaving for the island this instant. He thought about my dream and what it meant. He was so sure, not an ounce of fear for our future. "Everything we have been through has happened so fast, but that is the way of the storm. It hit hard and was devastating in ways both good and bad. All that force... The pressure from the wind and rain left its mark on you, shaping you into who you are. It changed us both for the better." He squeezed me and inhaled as he buried his nose in my hair.
"Things are going to change all around us. When our time on the island ends, our dynamic will be completely different; a new home, new routines, but it is all part of our life. Our family is evolving. I know change can be scary. Change is the storm, but I have learned to appreciate a good storm." He focused on a memory of us, naked and lost in primal lust-filled love making while thunder and lightning surrounded us.
He chuckled. "I thoroughly enjoyed that storm and I want to experience that again with you." He groaned and shifted his hips up as he kissed my neck, his fingers drifting beneath my shirt and dragging up and down my torso. "I will be the sun that eclipses the moon, and together we will chase away any storm with something beautiful."
It came time to say goodbye to Forks and to Rosalie, Emmett and Lily. We never really talked about it openly but we all knew it was time. There was an anxiousness that was always present. Each moment was fleeting, precious, and bittersweet.
We fell into a comfortably domestic routine. Carlisle and Edward found it all too humorous to watch Emmett in his new found human glory, watching as he found simple pleasure in remembering how to be human. They were not surprised when he discovered how much he liked to eat and they laughed at him when he drank three beers and then challenged Carlisle to a foot race. Physical changes aside, Emmett was still Emmett. He took to the change with enthusiasm and filled his home with laughter.
Alice had gone into an all out planning mode, helping Rose pick out new clothes for Lily, helping Esme decide on which furniture we would take with us to the new house, and what we would buy new. She was a feast of activity that never seemed to stop. She was always rushing and on the edge of frantic, and I could tell that all her attempts at keep busy were simply a means to keep her mind occupied. She didn't want to think about leaving either.
Jasper was zipping around, putting all of his planning into action. He too was keeping very busy, but he was slightly withdrawn. Each time we engaged each other, it was our usual banter and jokes, but that seemed empty. He filled his time with so much work that there was little room for anything else and it became clear to me that it was a way for him to avoid the constant flux of emotions around him.
I filled my days spending time at Rosalie's house, snapping pictures, painting a mural in the baby's room, and snickering at Esme and Rose when they would bicker over who would change Lily and who would feed her. We all but lived at their home during the day, spending as much time as possible with them knowing that very soon, we would be leaving Forks without them. Esme would often stay the night, tending to Lily when she would wake. Her time was sand in an hour glass, slipping by too fast for words. She worried about how we would fit into Lily's life. Would Rose tell her what we are? If not, how would we explain our ever youthful appearances to her ten years from now? Would they expose Lily to our secrets and would she be safe if they did? She knew Aro was never coming back, but the Volturi still existed and upheld certain rules. There was no doubt in Esme's mind that she would never see Lily again if it meant she would be protected.
I was almost out the door when I heard Esme place Lily in her crib and sit in the glider, her breaths coming out quick and uneven. She was crying. I slipped into the room and knelt at her feet, resting my head in her lap, silently comforting her as she stared at her sleeping granddaughter.
When we finally left the room, we ran into Emmett digging in the refrigerator. He jumped as we approached and dropped the milk in his haste. I caught it before it hit the ground and saw that Emmett was fresh out of bed looking disheveled and a half asleep.
"Jesus! You two can't sneak up on me like that. I'm human. I can have a heart attack you know."
And Esme was laughing again. She hugged Emmett for a long while and shook her head as she pulled away. "You never fail to make me smile. Thank you for that."
He shrugged and motioned for us to sit at the table as he opened a package of chocolate chip cookies. He started dunking the cookies in milk and hummed as he ate. With a mouth full of food he said, "Chocolate is so much better than I remembered." He took another bite of cookie and raised his glass. "Here's to getting fat." Then he chugged his milk, burped, and giggled.
We shared easy conversation while Emmett regaled us with his recent tales of the grocery store, his first time buying toilet paper and how terrified he was when Rose asked him to buy tampons, but eventually the talk became serious, Esme finally voicing her concerns.
"Esme..." Emmett said in between bites of vanilla ice cream. "After everything happened, do you really think anyone- Volturi or otherwise- would dare question anything you do?" Emmett raised an eyebrow at her. "Seriously. They are all scared shitless of us, well... Bella mostly, but still."
I rolled my eyes at him and then bit my lower lip. "Are you going to tell her? What we are..."
"We have plenty of time to think about it." He said casually. "Whatever we decide, we are not going to broach that subject with her until she is old enough to understand and that is a long way off. Besides, Alice says those pansy guard members wouldn't dare."
He put his spoon down and chuckled. "We defeated them so easily... The entire fucking Volturi guard! Mostly by just moving them out and I will admit... I may have gone a little emo empath and scared the hell out of them, but that was really just for kicks." He leaned back in his chair and put his hands behind his head, grinning and feeling massive pride. "Think about it. It wasn't even much of a fight as far as vampire battles are concerned, and don't think they didn't notice that. Cullens are untouchable because we are fucking bad ass. End of story."
Carlisle and Esme were the first to leave and their goodbye was hard. Esme was not one to hide her emotions. She had fallen so in love with her new granddaughter, and she was dreading the separation. The moving trucks had left and Esme stood in the front yard staring at the house, Carlisle holding her and comforting her before leading her to the car. Edward, Alice, Jasper and I all hugged her and told her we would see her soon, and Jasper winked at her before focusing on calming her. She laughed and hugged him again, thanking him in a whisper.
There was very little left to do thanks to Jasper's detailed planning; just a few loose ends to tie up and then we'd be off.
Jasper sat with his eyes closed as still as a statue taking deep breaths. His aura churned around him in a haze of blue with crackling white flashes- the blue was relief and the white was hot flashes of guilt. I watched as he tried to ease his tension by focusing on the soft blue, but as soon as he started to relax, the guilt wracked his concentration and pierced his body with tension. He shuddered and tried again with the same results, cursing under his breath.
He sensed my presence then and opened his eyes, looking down and away from me.
"Were you meditating?" I asked.
"Yeah, this morning sucked." He laughed. "Lots of crazy emotions. Just trying to calm myself down."
I sat next to him. "Why the guilt?"
"Esme..." He hesitated. "She was a wreck. It was hard for me to be around her."
"You helped her get through it." I whispered. "I know you were taking the sadness from her. I could feel it. It was hard for you."
"Yes." He replied. "It was hard. I feel guilty because I'm glad she's gone."
He pulled his knees up to his chest and wrapped his arms around his legs. "She has shown me nothing but compassion and support and I was practically pushing her out the door. She didn't deserve that."
He was struggling with all the complex emotions of this morning, trying to push away everything without feeling it himself, and without pushing then onto anyone else.
"May I try something?"
He arched an eyebrow at me and then shrugged. "Have at it. I'm obviously not having any luck."
I was struck by his deadpan expression and I felt his mild annoyance stretch onto me. I grabbed his hand and led him to the middle of the floor, where we sat Indian style, facing each other. His mood was all over the place, from feeling motivated to feeling jealousy and guilt. He was exasperated by all of it and I was feeling it too.
In a moment of impatience, I waved my hand around and batted at the unpleasant feelings floating around. "I think..."
I couldn't verbalize what I wanted to do. Instead, I focused all of my energy and opened myself up, showing him. The jealousy and guilt was like lightening, coming down and wreaking havoc in my little bubble. It was another storm in our midst, one that I had seen in my dream; one that I knew I couldn't chase away, but one that I could change into something else.
I took a deep breath and raised my arms up and welcomed it, watching the erratic waves swarm around me. I exhaled and with a flick of my wrist, I changed it. With every movement of my hands, the lightening dissipated and swirled in the air, transforming and evolving into a warm wind and eventually into a bright sun, warming our psyches and filling the room with light.
"Now you." I said aloud watching as he took a new approach to his gift. "Don't push or pull... Take it, embrace it and then mold it into something else." He took in the emotions and instead of simply absorbing them, he manipulated them. He too was evolving right before my eyes.
We meditated together into the morning and when the real sun came up, it filled the room with a soft yellow glow and there was no more sadness, just a quiet acceptance. It was beautiful.
"Damn... I... I needed that." He laughed.
"Feeling better?" I asked.
"I feel better than I have in a long time." He replied.
There was a knock at the door, which opened slowly. Alice peeked her head in and I nodded and motioned for her to join us. She bound into the room and Jasper stood to meet her. She took his hand and kissed it gently before meeting his eyes.
"Costa Rica?" She asked, smiling because she could already see them going there.
He sighed. "I am feeling the need."
She jumped on him, wrapping her hands around his neck and her legs around his waist before kissing him soundly.
"I'll call Gustavo and have him get the house ready."
Edward walked in and smirked as he looked down at Alice. "Costa Rica? Nice." And then he looked at me. "Are you ready?"
I nodded and gave Jasper a quick hug before receiving a long drawn out hug from Alice.
"We'll see you soon." She said with a wink. "No need to rush back to us. We'll be waiting for you, however long you two are gone."
"I know." I replied, still conflicted in my feelings. "I'll miss everyone."
"Not as much as you think." She turned away and then gave me a quick glance over her shoulder. "From what I can see, you won't be thinking of anything but... Let's just say that you'll be pretty distracted- for quite a while."
Then it was me shaking my head, slightly embarrassed at the possibility of Alice seeing what Edward and I had planned for our time away, what she had once referred to as marathon mating.
"Months." She said followed by a wince. "If I didn't know any better, I would guess you two are going to go for some kind of record. Jesus!"
"Alice…" Edward said from the doorway.
"Sorry, I'll stop looking. Sheez! I was just trying to reassure Bella that everything will be fine." She nodded and looked at me. "It will be."
I would never get enough of the feel of Edward's hands on me.
Locked in a heated embrace, I could see our connection pulsating in the air around us; heat, love and anticipation creating an intense aura that I could not even begin to describe. One aura, one being... Us...
Together we focused on where we wanted to be and then... and then we were there.
Hot sand, blazing sun, and an ocean breeze blowing my hair around, Edward's lips hungry and desperate against my skin, kissing and licking, whispering a stream of words that tickled me as we sank onto our knees on the beach.
The kisses turned soft and sweet, our lips melding together ever so slowly. When we pulled apart, I stared into his eyes as I stripped him of his clothes and touched him. I ran my hands down the back of his neck and onto his chest, my hands still buzzing with need for more friction. I trailed my fingertips across his abs and then in between his legs, stroking his inner thigh, teasing him until he took my hand in his and guided it to his erection.
"Yes," he breathed.
I pushed him onto his back and gazed at his perfect sparkling skin. I was mesmerized by him, dazzled by the feel of him under me. I breathed deeply and straddled him, running my fingers over his bottom lip. He sucked my finger into as mouth and entered me slowly.
"Yes," he repeated. His hips pushed upward, mine pushed down. The feeling... not the physical sensation, but the feeling of us becoming one.
"I love the way you feel inside me." I groaned. "Oh god... you're part of me right now."
His eyes snapped open and his growl was involuntary. In a flash, he was on top of me, his arms snaking around my waist and down around my back side. He pulled me onto him and told me that he loved me and I told him that I loved him.
Our words came out in whispers, rushed pants and keening moans, as though we couldn't say anything else. All other words meant nothing, there was nothing else in this moment except for us... this... and it was everything.
It was lust of course, but so much more. A maddening rush of sensations took me and spun me around. I was totally lost as he used his fingers to make me come.
"Yes... Yes... Come for me." As he spoke the words, I came apart in his arms, shaking and crying out, grasping onto him as he thrust harder. I moved with him in a fast rhythm and said the only thing I could think of.
"I love you, I love you, don't stop. Oh... Yes... I love you. I love you so much. More, I need more."
We stayed in that spot simply worshipping each other for hours, making love and talking in between.
We were lying on our sides, facing each other, not speaking at that moment, just looking at each other, each of us marveling at our love, our bond, and the intensity of it all.
"You..." a smile tugged at the corner of his lips. "Your very being has smoothed the jagged edges of my soul."
I hugged him, burying my head in his chest.
"I know you know this, but I feel like I have to say it out loud." He ran his fingers through my hair, hesitating. "I used to think I didn't have a soul."
I squeezed him hard and kissed my way up his neck and across his jaw. "No. Edward..."
He put his fingers over my lips, silencing me.
"I was so wrong. I was surrounded by three mated couples that I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt loved each other. I just... I was so stunted by jealousy and loneliness that I couldn't see past it."
He kissed me then on my forehead and my cheek. "I waited so long for you."
I kissed his eyelids and gave him silent reassurances that all of that was over. I urged him to feel me, nothing but me.
"I know." He whispered. "The wait was worth it. It only makes every moment with you that much sweeter."
Our days on Isle Esme seemed unending. We walked hand in hands down the beach, lounged around the house, and ran through the thick jungle. We swam in the ocean at night and made love whenever we felt the need, which was often.
We traveled to the mainland of Rio to hunt, and went back to the club in the city where we danced a slow, sexy rumba. The club was crowded, the air thick with music, and every woman in the room was jealous of me. I took pride in the fact that all these females were eyeing MY husband, and it made me pull him closer as he chuckled and played along, pulling me by my hips so our bodies were totally connected.
He brought his mouth to my ear. "Every man in this room wants you."
I moaned as he spoke. We pushed our hips together and moved in a drawn out rhythm.
"You are mine. All mine." He growled before kissing my neck.
"Always." I breathed and gave a growl of my own. "Let's get out of here."
As the morning approached, it started to rain. We watched the water come down from the sky from the front porch of the house. The island rain never lasted long, just passing showers and patches of clouds that always gave way to a brilliant sun. I slipped on a light sun dress and pulled my hair up into a sloppy pony tail, and came into the living room to find Edward on the sofa, a laptop on his lap. I nestled in next to him as he read e-mails from Emmett, littered with pictures of Lily- Lily being fed and changed and bathed and spoiled with more toys than a infant could ever use or need. It made me smile.
"Oh! That one is my favorite." I pointed at a picture of Rosalie asleep on the couch with Lily in her arms. They both looked so peaceful. I wished them good dreams.
Edward laughed. "They are already trying to have another one. Emmett wants to try for a boy."
I snorted. "A little Emmett running around? How cute would that be?"
Edward handed me the computer. "There are a few messages for you."
The first was a video from Esme, a virtual tour of the house in Vermont. It was decorated in classic Esme style: light, open and inviting, except for one room. The third floor of the house had shiny hard wood floors, white walls, and Edward's piano. Esme's face came onto the screen.
"This is your space. I left it bare, a blank canvas... I was hoping we could paint it together. I am dying to finger paint again!" She laughed and a flicker of sadness flashed across her eyes. "It will be waiting for you. We can't wait to have you home again."
And with that the video ended.
The last e-mail was a video from Emmett and Rose. The picture was shaky and I could hear Emmett laughing. "Three, two, one. Action!"
The picture shook again and then I heard Rose. "Can't you keep that thing straight? Pfft. No more wine for you!"
Her face came into the frame and her smile was gigantic. "Bella! Guess what? I'm drunk!" She held up a glass of wine and took a long sip. "Turns out, I'm kind of a light weight. Three glasses of wine is more than enough to get me tipsy."
She broke down into laughter and then put down her glass and smoothed her hair. "Seriously though... I want to propose a toast." She looked around, a confused expression on her face. "Where did my wine go?"
The camera faced the floor and Emmett snickered, the camera panned up and he and Rosalie were both looking at us, a glass in each hand.
"Allow me." Emmett said while putting his arm around Rose's shoulders, like he was holding her up. "To fairy tale endings."
"No." Rose said shaking her head. "To fairy tale beginnings."
They clinked their glasses and each took a sip before looking at each other and smiling. I could tell by her expression that Rose was starting to cry. "I'm an emotional drunk. I guess this is the part where I break down and tell you I love you and all that. Yeah..."
"I think it's time to put Rose to bed." Emmett said and she nodded, waving to the camera and then winking.
"Look! I have a tan!" Emmett exclaimed before the video ended.
"Tell me what I'm thinking," I said softly trailing my fingers through his hair.
He shifted slightly and raised an eyebrow as I keep my literal mind hidden from him. His expression turned confused as he heard only silence. "I can't... Your-"
I put my finger to his lips. "Tsk. Tsk. You're over thinking this" I grinned at him and bit my lower lip, hoping he could trust himself to just know that I would always want him, in every way possible. "Tell me."
His expression flickered between amusement and concentration. He closed his eyes and took a deep breath before his eyes opened slowly, he swallowed and whispered, "You want to be closer to me."
"I do," I answered and he brought his forehead down to my shoulder.
"You want my hands on your bare skin." His fingers ghosted up and down my arms then wandered to the back of my neck. "You're sick of this dress."
He chuckled and with a brush of his hand, my dress was falling off my shoulders into a pool of fabric at my feet. "You're hungry for me." I watched as his chest rose and fell in a ragged breath. Our mouths found each other, our tongues massaging each other's. God, I couldn't get enough of his taste. Never enough...
His hands moved down around my ass, gripping my flesh and shuddering before looking at me. "God, Bella. I can feel how much you want me."
He was lightly growling, almost purring as he stared me down. "You always want me."
He was right of course, and he didn't need to read my mind to know it. I attacked him then, jumping on him and curling my body around his, kissing him with every ounce of energy I had, our mouths devouring each other's until our passionate embrace became soft and sweet. Edward carried me to the bedroom and told me he was going to worship me like the goddess I was. And he did.
Once again, Alice was right. Most of our time was intimate and filled with pleasure, but it was more than that. In between the physical there were so many words- we shared stories and dreams, fantasies and fears.
There were odd moments where I already knew what he was going to say, things I had seen in his memories. Sometimes we even finished each other's sentences and then laughed because saying things out loud was somehow different; somehow it was sweeter sharing our memories in a more traditional way. I absolutely relished every moment getting to know him better, and I knew he loved me more than anything, knew he saw me as a goddess or an angel, and I would roll my eyes and tell him I was just Bella, but the truth was he made me feel like a goddess. He made me feel like together we were invincible. The simple truths he told when he said I was a good person and that I made him feel like he was a good person too, was more than enough to make my heart swell. We may have been immortal, vampires... but right then, I had never felt more alive.
"Come, my Black Eyed Angel." He took my hand and kissed it before smiling at me sweetly. "You're hungry."
His lip curled up into a silly grin as he led me outside and we burst into a run.
My dear readers, I need to thank you. When I started writing this, I had no idea how much I would fall in love with writing. What started out as about twenty page attempt at fan-fiction inspired by a Radiohead song became Black Eyed Angel.
I would like to thank everyone who reviewed, faved and simply read. All of you have made this entire process wonderful and have inspired me to write more.
Until next time...
Prettyflour is waving and blowing kisses at you all!