I ran, pushing my limits farther than ever, following the familiar scent. I sped through the forested hills, effortlessly, not having to think about it, not having to look at my surroundings. I just ran. The wind raged through my hair angrily, snarling at me, but I just ran faster, and it quieted down. Oh, what a wonderful leisure it was.
Then I could see it, the white mansion, surrounded by giant oak trees. I was still a few miles away, but as I got closer and closer, the recognizable, warm, sweet scent of my family swirled around me, incasing me, welcoming me home.
I could hear them now. I could hear Renesmee, my Renesmee, asking Rosalie where I was.
"She's almost here now, Nessie. Listen closely. Can you hear the footsteps?" Rosalie paused briefly before continuing and I could imagine Nessie's precious head bobbing up and down, showing Rose that she could.
"That's your momma," she finished pleasantly, happy to have pleased Renesmee. I could hear her running too, running to the door to greet me.
I ran faster.
There was still one voice I didn't hear, one voice I craved so dearly, it hurt to think it wasn't there. But if he wasn't there, then where was he?
I could hear Alice dancing around the house, no doubt dusting a surface lacking dust, or replacing un-wilted flowers. I could hear the disturbing screeching of metal on metal coming from the garage and Emmetts loud grunts while he tried to fix whatever piece of machinery wasn't already in perfect condition in our well equipped outbuilding. Jasper, Carlisle, and Esme were absent, but they were out on a hunting trip in Northern California. I knew this, but I didn't remember Edward saying he was going along.
Then I broke through the last trees and shrubbery surrounding the meadow, and flew straight to the front steps.
Renesmee was their waiting for me, giggling at watching me run. She jumped into my arms and rested her head on my shoulder.
"I missed you mommy," she whispered sweetly, and then placed her small, warm hand on my cheek.
She caught me up on everything I had missed. She showed me hunting with Alice and Edward, all three of them racing into the forest, her winning, and Edward's proud smile. She showed me going to La Push with Jacob, swimming at first beach, and playing with Embry and Quil. Then she showed me how every night of my absence, Edward read her bedtime story to her, allowing her to read aloud when she wished, and him acting out the story, causing her to laugh herself to sleep, which was where the intriguing stories left off until the next night.
It made my heartache, seeing Edward's smile through Renesmee's memories and knowing I had missed them.
"I missed you too," I whispered back.
I carried her to the rocking chair in her huge nursery at the very middle of the house. God, the child was spoiled.
I rocked her for a long time, ignoring my own needs, wants, and the stabbing pain in my chest. While rocking her I thought about Edward and how I would give to have him in my arms right now.
My thoughts reminded me of a line from Romeo and Juliet :
"Ay, madam, from the reach of these my hands: Would none but I might venge my cousin's death!"
I laughed quietly to myself. How clever Juliet was. Her mother thought she wanted to kill Romeo and avenge Tybalt's death, when she was really thinking of what she would do with her hands if she had them in reach of Romeo. Oh, what I would do with my hands if Edward were in my reach…
Eventually Renesmee drifted off to unconsciousness, and I laid her down in the twin bed she had grown into, after being in a crib only a month ago.
I ran straight to Alice, knowing she would already know what I needed. Anything to shorten the time separating me and Edward. She was sitting on the white love seat in the den, singing along to a high-pitched Avril Lavigne song, flipping through another outrageously priced catalogue. She looked up at me and smiled.
"Welcome home, Bella," she said cheerily, jumping up to give me a quick peck on the cheek.
"He's waiting for you at the cottage. He wanted to give you time with Renesmee."
"Oh, thanks, Alice!" I replied excitedly, while turning to run back out of the house.
After I passed over the threshold, I ran to the river, and launched myself over without pausing for a second. I made my way down the familiar path, heavily scented with me, Edward, and Renesmee. I could feel the rocks under my feet slowly turn to dirt as I made my way up the last hill. I came over the hill and went straight to the door, throwing it open.
I didn't need to step in. I knew before two seconds had passed that he wasn't there. I sniffed the air, and found nothing but the faint scent of our home. A mixture of ash, stone, dirt, roses, and our family. He wasn't here.
I turned and ran the perimeter of the house looking frantically for him, trying to find a trail. It was in the rose garden. He had walked out through our bedroom and took a path that goes straight from the rose bushes to the river, one we had taken many times before.
His scent was strong, three, maybe five, minutes old, and I followed it. Soon, I could hear the flow of the river over the rocks, and smell the fresh aroma of the water. I could see the river, cutting through the almost treeless valley I was now standing in. There was one lone tree across the gorge beside the rushing stream. Leaning against the tree in the ever-growing shade, for the cloudy day was now turning into a cloudy night, was an earthshakingly beautiful angel.
His bronze hair was untidy as usual, his eyes a deep, golden honey, his soft, full lips pulled into a remarkable crooked smile, and his perfect face looking at me with an intensity that made my whole body ache for him.
He took one step towards me, but before he set his foot back on the ground I was off. I launched myself to him, and he caught me happily. He wrapped his arms around me and held me in the air.
"How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of being and ideal grace.
I love thee to the level of every day's
Most quiet need, by sun and candle-light.
I love thee freely, as men strive for right.
I love thee purely, as they turn from praise
I love thee with the passion put to use
In my old griefs, and with my childhood's faith.
I love thee with a love I seemed to lose
With my lost saints. I love thee with the breath,
Smiles, tears, of all my life," Edward whispered into my ear, with so much love, if I had still been human I would have surely cried.
I smelled his warm breath in my face. Sweet, delicious, the scent made my mouth water. Instinctively, I leaned closer, and eagerly closed the space in between us. Our lips met, and molded into one. This was it. The most amazing feeling in the world, being held in Edwards arms.
"My bounty is as boundless as the sea,
My love as deep; the more I give to thee,
The more I have, for both are infinite," I whispered back, as his lips caressed their way down my jaw, my neck, my shoulder.
He carried me to the ground, and kissed my eyes, my nose, my cheeks, my neck, my lips feircly. As I laid on the ground I gazed up at him and the sky behind him, with only a faint hint of daylight left, but it was too much.
"Bring in cloudy night immediately. Spread thy close curtain, love-performing night, That runaway's eyes may wink and Edward
Leap to these arms, untalk'd of and unseen.
Lovers can see to do their amorous rites By their own beauties; or, if love be blind, It best agrees with night. Come, civil night, Thou sober-suited matron, all in black, And learn me how to lose a winning match, Play'd for a pair of stainless maidenhoods: Hood my unmann'd blood, bating in my cheeks, With thy black mantle; till strange love, grown bold, Think true love acted simple modesty. Come, night; come, Edward; come, thou day in night; For thou wilt lie upon the wings of night Whiter than new snow on a raven's back. Come, gentle night, come, loving, black-brow'd night, Give me my Edward," I yelled toward the sky while Edward and I continued blissfully into this perfect piece of our forever.