I loathe school. I do, I do, I do. Anyways... I bring you a new chapter. Warning: There is something that happens in this chapter that forces me to give you a warning. So yeah... I'm not going to tell you what it is though. That'll just mess everything up. -wink, wink- Just... beware.

Chapter ? (Good Lord, I still don't know which chapter I'm on.)
Patience Is A Virtue

Angela moved her pawn and sighed. "You are playing very badly today, Bella."

Bella stared at the chess board and nodded. "Aye." She leaned back against her seat and looked longingly out the window. It was a beautiful day. The sun was bright and shining down on the green fields below. Such a beautiful day...

"You're betrothal was glorious."

Bella thought of the event that had taken place only a few hours previous. Glorious. She had woken in the morning dreading the betrothal. It only proved that soon she would be Master Edward Cullen's wife. It was just one step closer to the wedding, one step closer to a man she feared herself with.

The maids had been absent, instead the creator of her skillfully woven dress had helped her prepare. The dress resembled a gown, shockingly so. Yet, the intricate beading and formal lace made it so... elegant. The way the material had drifted down past her thighs to her ankles... The silk had been closely formed to her body, but not in such a way it would be deemed inappropriate.

The whole city had gathered to witness her betrothal, even the King and his family. Jacob escorted Bella to Edward. Despite how hard she tried, she couldn't help but notice how handsome he looked in his noble robe laced by a treasured chain. His eyes smoldered as she stood next to him. She refused to meet his gaze, even as the priest placed her hand on Edward's, still she would not look up.

It was only at the end when she was forced to break her contact with the floor. Edward had grabbed her chin in his hand and tilted her head up until she, finally, looked at him. Even as she thought of it now, Bella still couldn't explain the Merchant's expression. His eyes were so intense as they looked into hers, she found herself lost in the green orbs. And then Edward had kissed her. Slow and deep and... Bella shifted in her seat as she brought herself back to the present.

"You looked like an angel, and he a king. Together, you both make a beautiful pair."

"Perhaps on the outside, Angela, but there is more to a relationship than society's acceptance of how the Merchant and I look together in the flesh."

Her friend smiled at her curtness. "Indeed, there is. Emotionally, a couple has to be compatible." Bella nodded in agreement. Angela continued. "And I believe you two work rather well together."

Bella's eyes widened in disbelief. "Forgive me, friend, but are you blind?"

Angela raised her eyebrow. "Are you?"

"Not in the slightest!"



"I just wonder how a woman can be so naive to a man's affection."

"Affection?!" Bella's voice rose an octave. She couldn't believe what she was hearing. "Affection? Is that what you think the Merchant is giving me?" She thought of his kisses, his hand upon her breast, his darkened eyes... "He feels no such way of me. I am like many of the married women now in London: paid for and used."

"Bite your tongue." Angela sat back. "I watch Master Edward's eyes watch you like a hawk. You are precious to him."

"Aye, precious like his jewels." Bella bit her lip, surprised when she felt pain grab hold of her heart.

Angela sighed again. "You will see, Lady Bella. Once you rid yourself of the doubt clouding your vision, you will see love."

I have seen it. Bella thought silently. It is beautiful and something to be feared. "The man will never love me."

"He already does."

Bella bristled, tired of her friend's riddles and antics. "Foolish talk."

Angela returned back to the chess board and rid Bella of her queen in triumph. "Only to the blind."

Edward watched as Lady Isabella rode along side Emmett. Her cloak dangled over the side of her horse, exposing little of her creamy white flesh. The closer Emmett and her came, the more Edward noticed the confusion etched upon her face. Emmett escorted the Lady to the house Edward had acquired from Lady Victoria. It was now furnished and made homely according to his personal taste. Edward wanted to show Isabella. After all, this was her home now as well.

He met them outside, just as Isabella was descending her horse. "Isabella." He greeted. Emmett left them alone, taking the horses to the stables.

Bella looked at Edward and took off her gloves. "Master Edward."

"Just Edward."

"Just Bella."

Edward frowned in confusion. "Excuse me?"

Bella smiled a little, a light blush appearing on her cheeks. Edward almost groaned aloud. "I've been meaning to tell you, I prefer to be called Bella."

"Hmm. Only by those who are close to you?"


"I've noticed your family and friends, those you welcome, they all call you Bella. Anyone else, and the only name you respond to is Lady Isabella."

Bella stood, bewildered. How thoroughly this Merchant observed her. Aye, if anything, he was thorough. "I've never noticed."

Edward took her arm and led her into the house. "Would that mean that I am accepted into your circle of family and friends?" His tone was light, but he was truly curious to the answer. If her answer was yes, then he knew how much she had progressed into their relationship.

Bella blushed deeper. "I- you are to be my husband." She rose her head in confidence. "You may call me whatever you wish."

"Nay." Edward shook his head at Bella's look of surprise. "There are only two things people have control over in this world: their faith and their name. I would ask you to remember that. If you prefer Bella, then Bella is what I shall call you." He shut the door behind them and turned her to him. "My lady." His hand brushed her cheek and Bella's breath hitched.

How had the atmosphere turned from light to heated in such a short amount of time?

"Where are we?" She asked, shakily. It was disturbing how much his presence effected her senses. Quite irritating actually.

Edward stepped away and gestured with his arm. "Welcome to your new home."

Bella walked in a circle, taking in the high ceilings, the flight of stairs... the large rooms surrounded by authentic looking wood. "It is beautiful." She breathed.

"Would you like a tour?"


She is amazed. Edward mused. I wonder how amazing she'll let me make it for her. He took her arm in his again and began showing her the rooms. Along the way, they ran into the servants. Bella stopped to introduce herself, acting like the class of royalty she was brought up into. Edward smiled at her with pride. His betrothed handled herself well. On the second landing, he showed her the chambers, saving his own for last. Edward opened the door and stepped inside.

Bella hesitated. She was aware of whose room this was. She was also very aware of the complicated feelings brewing in her mind all the way to the strange sensations at the pit of her stomach.

Edward turned around to look at her. He smiled. "Come in."

His smile was dangerous. Cunning almost, and yet it drew Bella in. She stepped inside the room and looked around. It was the largest of all the rooms... and the most beautiful. Paintings hung on his walls, leaned against the wall. Drawings of maps were spread along his desk... odd art pieces of all kinds... spread across his room. It was as if treasures were just thrown at this Merchant. She walked towards the paintings.

Pointing to a frame, she said, "She is beautiful, this woman."

Edward came to her, his eyes fixed on the familiar painting he often admired. "Aye. She is my mother."

Bella closed her eyes at the pain in his voice. It was very rare that Edward ever let her witness his emotion. In fact, it was so seldom, at times she wondered if he lacked the ability to freely express himself. Not now, though. Even if it was only for a moment, at least she had finally... heard him.

Slowly, she moved her fingers to the next woman. "Who is she?" This woman was beautiful as well, but there was something about her. From her beautiful red hair to her full lips, there was something that turned her off to Bella. She did not much care for her.

Edward chuckled. "Definitely not kin."

Bella looked at him. "Share the humor, please."

He sighed. "This woman, Tanya, she tried to kill me."

Bella gasped, her eyes wide in disbelief. "How?"

"By having her men try to flog me to death."

Edward watched as Bella's eyes narrowed at the painting. She bit her lip. "Were you two lovers?" It was a bold question, one she feared that may anger him.

"It was a long time ago."

"You are young."

Edward laughed. "Aye, well, it doesn't feel like it."

"Why?" Bella asked, reminding him of her innocence.

"You still have much to learn, my Lady."

Bella frowned at his tone. "I am not a child, Edward."

Aye. It was always one step forward, two steps back. Patience.

"Perhaps, but there is this innocence about you." He took her face in his hands. "There should be more innocence in the world."

"So says the man who tries to seduce his guest."

Edward rose his eyebrows in amusement and let her go. "You are not a guest, my lady. This is your home."

Bella tried to wrap her head around the stunning revelation. The only home she had ever known was the palace. She looked at Edward and tried to hide the feelings she knew he would be able to read in her eyes. Bella wondered why she did not feel sad, leaving her home should have been terrifying for her. And, yet, all she felt was wonder. This was her life now. Edward was her life now.... and she had to accept that.

Very carefully, she touched his face with her figers. Edward watched her with dark eyes. Bella traced his eyes down to his jaw until, at last, she reached his lips. She stared at them long and hard. Stretching on her feet, she raised her lips and pressed them firmly against his. Edward smiled beneath her and Bella pulled away, blushing like mad.

"You are laughing at me because I do not know what to do." She accused with narrowed eyes.

"Nay." Edward assured her. "I am smiling because that is the most wonderful kiss I have ever received."

Bella looked down at her feet, trying desperately to hide her small smile.

Edward raised her head up to his and stared into her eyes. It was a big step for Bella, making the first move, but she had done it. He looked at her lips then, and smiled. Aye, she was ready. Very carefully, he lowered his mouth to hers and took over her artless start. Bella wrapped her arms around his neck and sighed into his mouth. She was ready now. Finally, she had accepted who she belonged to. Even if Edward did not love her, at least he was kind.


Edward lay Bella down on the bed. He could hear the frantic beating of her heart against his chest. With quick fingers, he removed her cloak from her body, throwing it on the floor. He traced his hand against her collarbones and Bella sighed, her eyes fluttering closed.

Edward bent to her throat and breathed in her scent. Lovely. His tongue flicked against her skin and Bella gasped, her hands clenching around the sheets. His lips played with the skin of her throat before seeking something better. He would teach her how good this could feel... he would make this amazing for her. Edward reached his hand behind her back and pulled at the strings of her dress, pulling it down. Next, he relieved her of her undergarments.

Bela watched him, slightly embarrassed. The man stared at her nakedness as if there was nothing more exquisite.

Edward looked up at her and touched her flushed cheeks. "Do not be embarrassed, love. You are beautiful."

Before she could respond, Edward dipped his head and placed light kisses on her breasts. Bella moaned and Edward lay his body in between her legs. Her hands reached for his hair as he licked and suckled. She almost screamed in shock when he took a rosy nipple into his mouth. Her desire was almost too much, the sensations in her stomach now spread between her legs and Bella rose against his body seeking friction.

Edward took hold of her hips and sat up. Bella rose with him and kissed him feverishly. Her hands clawed at his back as he sucked her tongue into his mouth. He removed his body from hers and took off his clothes. Bella watched him, surprised at how arousing his actions were.

Edward lightly pushed her back against the bed and sat on his knees, staring at her beauty. In all his years of living, he had never come across something so... wonderful. He lightly traced his fingers against her skin. From her face, to her breasts... her stomach.... her hips... Bella watched his wandering hand in fascination. She looked up at him in shock when his fingers splayed out across the soft mound in between her legs. Edward stared back at her and played with her slick folds before sliding a finger into her.

Bella cried out and reached for the sheets. Edward slid his finger in and out in a steady rhythm, watching her face transform into looks of passion. He felt his own need quickly crashing down on him, but he would wait. This was about her, now. His thumb flicked against her nub and he inserted another finger inside of her. Bella bit her lip, trying to bite back her moans.

Edward moved his hand faster. "Do not hide your sounds of passion from me, love. Your moans and cries are beautiful to me."

Bella compiled and her head thrashed from side to side as he brought her to the edge, but never taking her farther. Just when she thought she was going to burst, Edward removed his hand from her and settled between her legs. She groaned in frustration. "I'm sorry, Bella. I would have taken you before, but I wanted you to need me first." Slowly, he entered her.

Bella's hands grasped his shoulders. It was not painful at all really, just an odd feeling of being stretched. Edward moved carefully, watching her for any signs of pain.

Bella turned restless and moved against him... hard. She gasped and her eyes watered in pain.

"Aye, darling, it cannot be helped." Edward moved and the pain was overshadowed by a new feeling.

Bella moaned and rose against his thrusts. Together, they created their own tempo of movement. Edward breathed in a ragged breath and moved against her hard. He tried to hold back, but he could not. Bella touched his cheek. "Aye." She wanted to feel him, all of him, with no barriers between them.

Edward moved again, harder. And again. Bella felt little pain, but it was worth it. To see him move so beautifully. He lowered his head into the crook of her shoulder and grunted. Bella rose against him, feeling the familiar heat building between her legs. Her back arched as she cried out, riding the waves of pleasure that snapped through her so suddenly. Somewhere in the distance, she heard Edward's low moan as he stilled inside her.

Yeah, yeah. So they did the deed and they're not even really husband and wife yet. But... they're betrothed... so, in a way, a way, it's ok. Heehee. The lemon was quick and some may think a little odd because it was so sudden. But, I do have a plan of how things will go and this is just one part of it. The lemon was just something that happened after Bella accepted Edward into her life.

Does Bella love Edward? She's starting to.
Does Edward love Bella? We'll see.
Is everything all hunky-dory between them? Hell no.