~*Deep breathing*~

I'm back, bitches.

Song: Counterpoint - Delphic


"I'm not awake," I grumbled, pulling the bed covers further up over my head.

"Except you are."

"Except I'm not. And even if I am, I'm not moving from this bed. Not at all. Not today. Maybe for a piss but that's it. Oh and food. So if you're going to try… no, just don't try. I'm ill." I squeezed the giant boomerang shaped pillow I had between my legs and up under my head. It was like a constant big hug. I didn't even need Edward in the night any more.

I loved the pillow so much I'd briefly considered marrying it. Edward was great, but I could actually get comfortable and sleep once LM stopped partying with this thing. I'd come to realise I had a vampire child within my womb; up all night and dead to the world during the day. Sometimes I had to poke him just to make sure he wasn't literally dead to the world, but he always kicked me back in what I imagined was a 'Fuck off will you. Trying to nurse this beautiful hangover of mine. Jesus, can't a guy get any quiet around here?' kick and my mind was at once put to rest.

"Why would I want to move you?" Edward asked. "I like you in my bed. Our bed." He nudged me and I rolled a little under the covers, moving into the most uncomfortable position of my life. I inwardly, and probably outwardly, groaned before releasing the pillow, rolling onto my back. My comfort was ruined forever. Thank you, Edward, really, thanks.

"Why can't you just leave me here to die?" I complained, running a hand through my tangled hair and staring at the white sheet over my face. I wasn't talking to Edward, I was talking to this sheet. This very nice Egyptian cotton sheet.

"Because," he said and I imagined he shrugged his shoulders.


"Because you've got to go to work, I've got to go to work." I made a pathetic whining sound and pulled a pillow over to my face.

"I don't want to..." I groaned into it.

Edward sighed. "YoYou're on maternity leave from next week anyway."

"Edward, what would you do if I died?" I asked.

"Bella, why would you die?"

"I don't know, anything can happen." The covers were suddenly removed from over my body creating a small gust. I took the pillow from my face and looked up in annoyance to see Edward standing there, glaring at me.

"You are not going to die. You're hardly going to die, you were at the clinic yesterday and everything is fine. All you're doing is working for a few hours."

"I don't know, Edward. What if a psychopath came in with a knife, cut off my boobs and I bled to death? What if I never make it to work, I could get hit by a cab crossing the road. I might get caught up in gun fire. You just don't know." I pulled the covers back over my head with a quick yank.

I could hear Edward exhale exasperatedly and move from the bedside. "I don't get you," he muttered to himself, not that he had any right to be pissed off with me, had he seen the size of me recently?

"I'm just saying," I sighed.

"Get out of the bed, Bella."

"Ed-ward," I groaned clearly annoyed, kicking my legs a little to emphasise my frustration. Yeah, I thought I'd go all out on the whole acting like a stroppy teenager thing.

"I'll do something special for you later," he snorted. "Just get up."

I whipped the covers back to see him standing by the large mirror, sorting his tie out, and narrowed my eyes. "Something special, really? Like what? Why?"

"Because I love you? And I need you to get out of the bed." He was smiling at me through the reflection of the mirror, watching with amusement as I grumbled again and then sat up and sighed. Putting a hand to my chest I frowned. Apart from the fact I could hear an annoying clicky sound when I breathed in and then a little wheeze breathing back out, I was now curious as to what special thing he could come up with.

"Well you couldn't buy me anything… You got me more than enough for my birthday, and you'd already got me the best present in the entire universe anyway. What more "special" things do I need?"

My birthday had gone beautifully. I'd feared the worst, a party maybe, a ton of presents, people I barely knew making a fuss over me, but what I got was a million times better. Edward, all day with no interruptions. Apart from dinner.

He turned back to look at me and smiled. "Well the best present is a Christmas present."

My due date was supposed to be Christmas day so if we were considering LM as a "gift", then he was right. I love Christmas, who the fuck wants to be in labour on Christmas? I want to be lying in front of a fire with a ridiculous Rudolph jumper on, pretending to be drunk on eggnog when I'm actually sipping orange juice.

Pain free. Problem free.

Not dying…

My smile in return was feeble but I guess he didn't notice. "I was talking about this maternity pillow actually." He laughed. I was seriously talking about the pillow.

Although looking down at my belly I had to smile again, more earnestly this time, because he had managed to attain the best present ever already. He was giving me a sneak preview of it now. It wasn't just this baby he was "giving" me, it was everything. And on a daily basis I wondered, what on earth was it that I gave in return?

"Where are you going? I thought you weren't supposed to be working today," I enquired lying back down with one leg over the covers.

"Uh…" He was wandering aimlessly around the room looking irritated and confused, flitting in and out of his "closet" which was the closest to Narnia I had ever been. It was like another fucking world. "They called me about twenty minutes ago, apparently I have to be in a meeting. Important people. Um, do you know where my suit jacket is? I always keep them together with their pants but I don't know where it is…"

"Is it, um, oh I can't remember…" I frowned, putting a hand to my head and taking my other leg from under the covers. Neither of which actually helped me to remember.

"Tonello?" he offered.

"Yeah! It fell down, I picked it up last night and put it somewhere…"

"This is really helpful, Bella," Edward laughed sarcastically, turning back into his foreboding room of doom. Too many clothes for one man. For a woman, it's fine, it is a wonderful thing sometimes to have so much choice. A man doesn't need choice, he needs jeans, a t-shirt and maybe a pair of chucks.

Actually Edward needs choice. Choice for him means choice for me; gives me different outfits to fantasize about while at work. Ahhh.

But since his brain hadn't become a sieve as of late like mine had, he should have really just shut-the-fuck-up.

"Shut up. If I wanna forget something then I can. I'm like a rhino, ok, don't wind me up. I'm big and I get pissy quickly."

"A rhino? That's a new one. Not long left though," he mused from the depth of his 'closet'. I assumed he was talking about my pregnancy coming to an end. Thirty two weeks, third trimester, I had just eight weeks left. Where had the time gone? We'd already reached Halloween. There wasn't another trimester after this, there was just baby.

"I'm running out of large mammals to compare myself to," I said back, pushing the slightly nervous thoughts that had risen just from those few words to the back of my mind.

Edward reappeared, all suited up and gorgeous, slowly meandering over to the bed where he stood tilting his head at me as I pouted. "Why can't we just stay in this bed?"

"I'm sorry, beautiful, I have to go in. It's not like I'd avoid spending time with you. You have work anyway, so surely it won't make much difference."

"Well I've just decided I'm not going to work. I don't feel like it. I'm ill. So it will make all the difference."

He frowned. "You can't just miss work because you don't feel like going. Working will distract you from your woes anyway. You should go, it's Halloween. And you like candy as well so it's a win-win."

"Woes," I snorted. "You sound like you want me to go to work."

"I do."

"Well I don't know why, I don't want to work today. I need rest so I can face tonight, I'm going to be waddling around for hours. And I already said I'm ill."

Edward and I had become quite the popular couple, which was funny seeing as I had never really been to an event with him so I remained unknown to all of those who knew Edward. Still, Halloween party invitations had been flooding in for us both, as a couple. I was a myth to so many people, I never went to Edward's company meals, parties and so on. Most of the time I couldn't attend just by coincidence so Edward would either go alone or not at all. I wondered whether we had received so many invitations by people Edward claimed to either find irritating, phoney or didn't even know, just so I could be seen and judged.

Apparently Dr and Mrs Cullen were quite the power couple in this end of town and Chicago, despite residing in Forks, and, being their son, everyone seemed to be expecting so much from Edward - he'd already had a divorce and a pregnant one-night stand before the age of thirty. At least Tanya was in the "correct" social circle, I was a nobody. He never really talked about it, nor did he seem to care, but I must have caused such a blow to his pretty much squeaky clean rep.

Still, people liked to talk and I was yet to be seen, or rather 'established', properly. Other than Bea and a few of her groupies, all of whom I'd inadvertently become friends with, I remained practically unknown. It definitely wasn't something I was complaining about and in the end, Edward and I turned down all invitations for a fancy-dress party at my brothers house.

He sighed and looked at me like I was a child in need of a little chastising. "You're not ill at all though, are you?"

"I genuinely am! Kind of…" I sat up, eyes wide in my defence with a hand to my chest. Edward looked dubious. Fuck you, Edward. I shrugged. "If you want to get a stethoscope and listen to me breathing right now, you might think differently."

There was a pause where we both glared at each other before Edward said, "Seriously?" I took an exaggerated breath in and then exhaled, not that he could hear the click and wheeze. It actually hurt a little that time. He just frowned. With the strange look of both doubt and concern he was giving me, I honestly expected him to whip out a stethoscope and give me an examination. Instead he caught my ankles and pulled me down to the end of the bed where he stood.

I shrieked a little as I moved from the top of the large bed to the bottom in one swift movement. Edward regarded me carefully as I stared back at him expectantly. One moment I was staring at him, the next I had him basically on top of me, or at least as close as my belly would allow, with an ear to my chest. My immediate reaction to which was laughing.

"Bella," he said sternly. "Could you stop laughing and just breathe normally so I can listen to it, please."

I could feel my chest constrict even more when I was laughing but I did as he said, still with a grin. "Sorry," I said, having been reprimanded. Sighing, I murmured "This is stupid," before inhaling deeply.

Strands of Edward's bronzed hair were tickling my chin making me smile. Click. I bit my lip as I looked down at him on my chest and exhaled. Wheeze.

I repeated the process. Inhale; god he smelt so fucking good. And warm, his body was so warm against my scantily clad frame. Maybe I should have gone to bed in more than just a tank top and knickers. But I got hot, sue me. Click. Exhale; his hair bristled a little with my breath, always resuming its original organised yet messy state. Wheeze.

"Can I stop now?" I asked shyly, putting a hand in his hair because I'd been wanting to do that ever since he'd put his head there.

"Stop breathing? No, never." He sighed and his cool breath skid over my skin leaving goosebumps behind. "You can't ever stop breathing. I won't let you," he mumbled quietly before pushing up from the bed so he loomed over me. He was still frowning. I think it was his favourite facial expression. "How long have you had that for?"

"A while. Why are you always so frowny? Maybe you should cheer up a bit." I smiled but he was in seriously serious Edward mode so I bit my lip and thought about it. "Um, I normally get it in the mornings, sometimes at night. Occasionally after any extreme, uh, physical exertion. Sometimes I have to take a second to catch my breath properly, sometimes it hurts, like when I was just breathing deeply, that hurt. Normally it doesn't. That's all."

"And you're only telling me about this now? You didn't think to bring this up with the doctor yesterday?" He shook his head, looking down at the bed sheets. I stared up at him for a long time before reaching a hand to his face and speaking.

"I forgot…" He didn't say anything. "Maybe my body is just trying to scare you because it's Halloween," I snorted but his face remained cold. I frowned. "Are you mad at me? I promise I'm not dying. It's probably just, like, well I don't know. Pretty sure breathlessness is part of pregnancy anyway."

"Wheezing isn't."

"I'm getting a cold? Edward, I feel fine. If it carries on any longer I'll see the doctor, ok?" I pursed my lips as he continued to look at the sheets. "Edward?" Still nothing. I sat up and pressed my lips to the corner of his mouth, then put my forehead to his cheek. "Ok?"

"Make sure you tell the doctor about this on Monday." Jesus, fine, whatever. "You make me so anxious, Isabella," he sighed eventually turning his head towards me. "Anxious and late. What time is it?"

"You're always anxious about something. You're a complete freak." I smiled and turned the watch on his wrist so I could read the time. "Nearly nine. What special thing do I get, by the way?"

"Hm, nearly nine o'clock…" He kissed me softly, slowly, lovingly, distracting me completely from the question I'd asked. I began sliding back underneath him, bringing him down with me. "And I have to go to work." He kissed me on my neck. I parted my mouth breathed out, wheeze-free. He kissed me again, this time on my chest where his head had previously been, before kissing the swelling of each of my breasts, both peeking above the neckline of my tank top. Like two giant gumdrops, jiggly when touched.

Heavy as shit and sore, but that's beside the point.

"I don't have to be in until nine thirty." He was working his way down kissing our baby who currently lay dormant within my womb, over the curvature of my belly until he reached my boxer-briefs. I wanted to squeeze my legs together but he held my thighs, pulling me closer to him. I reached up and grabbed two pillows, propping them up underneath my head as I couldn't bear lying flat on my back any longer. It just felt so fucking uncomfortable.

He stopped then, giving me a look of uncertainty. Just before he said anything I opened my mouth and blurted, "It's fine. Um. Yeah, you can, you know, carry on. I asked the doctor about sex and stuff yesterday and, yeah, we're, uh, still all good to go. It's later really that, uh, yeah. Mhm." He smiled, huffed and sat back on his heels.

"I'm leaving at nine fifteen. I've got ten minutes." He looked from his wrist to my already flushed face and back to his wrist. "Hmm," he hummed as he began slipping his suit jacket off, carefully folding it in two and placing it on the bed, and rolling up his shirt sleeves. "Can I make Isabella Swan climax in ten minutes?"

Oh fucking god.

"Uh-huh," I whimpered because just like that and I'm needy and horny and huge and the thought of having Edward's face, hands, any body part between my legs was thrilling. And wet, so very wet.

"And I do need breakfast," he mused darkly.

Scratch wet, wet is an understatement. Sopping. Sopping sounds good. It really sounds like being heavy with wetness which I'd say accurately describes my underwear right about now. Good word.

Shit, when did I become so easy? 'Can I make Isabella Swan climax in ten minutes?' well no, you can probably do it in five. If that.

Such a horny bitch. Seriously need to sort that out. Fuck, fuck, fuck.

I felt myself involuntarily begin to buck my hips up to him, hinting at him to fucking eat me already because I wanted him now and he couldn't just tease me like that. Especially not when I was like this. So I told him, in this gaspy half-moan-half-whine voice, also trying to seem a little sultry and sexy at the same time but actually sounding like a small dog.

"I hope this isn't you just trying to distract me," he laughed. I whimpered. "If you don't get out of this bed when I'm done, I will drag you out," he whispered against my lips before tugging on the bottom lip with his teeth and eventually devouring my mouth with his, resuming his position and slowly removing my panties which were just an embarrassment to my dignity.

I could see the mini me, who liked to pop-up in my head every now and then, shaking her head in disgust.

I continued to block her out because at this point I decided I like this kind of "present" and if there were any more of these presents being handed out then halle-fucking-lujah.

"You have to be quiet. Olivia is still in the house and too curious for her own good." Loud noises draw in small children. Ok, I got that. "And I'm timing you." He looked at his watch, grinned and then his mouth and fingers were on me, there, and I was as good as gone, two seconds in.


"Four minutes, thirteen seconds," he snorted looking so fucking smug with himself. "Now get up, get dressed and go to work. You seem fine to me, just being dramatic." I would have kicked him if I had any control of my legs. I would have kicked him right in the balls and see him try to laugh that one off. The cheeky fucker.

I was many things but drama queen I was not. Well not most of the time. Maybe sometimes. No, I was rarely dramatic, I was merely hormonal and you cannot possibly blame a pregnant woman for that. It was beyond my control. If anything it was his fault.

I was, however, gasping for another reason entirely and generally flapping around like a whale drowning on land, clasping the sheets within my fists. In the very corner of my eye I could see a familiar black and white face sitting patiently on the other side of the bed. Watching me. Judging me. Damn cat.

The ball-kicking would have to be saved for later.


It became evident to me as I walked, or rather waddled, around a corner away from the over populated city streets, that I should have ignored Edward this morning. There was a reason I should have stayed in bed. I felt it in my bones. Why I listened to the bullshit he was feeding me I don't know. I was in a foul mood today. Foul. I don't know if it was because I was just tired, or that I was hungry, or that the greasy man on the bus wouldn't let me take his seat. What fucker let's a pregnant woman stand on a fucking bus? What a douchebag.

No, there was no reason for my bad mood. The most obvious thought was to just blame it on the hormones. I'm temperamental. Sue me.

Thinking things would get better, I arrived at work only to see the shop was full and Angela was completely distracted. Silly me thinking the shop would be quieter and Angela may just be able to spare some time to listen to my woes. Oh no, I was left practically alone flying around the shop like a hot air balloon. At hot air balloon shaped like a whale. Angela claimed there was a big order that she needed to "deal with" since it was Halloween so I was left to man the shop. And people weren't any more sympathetic towards me because I was pregnant either.

I grumbled through my shift, ignoring even the nicer comments made by customers regarding my large middle and questions about my due date. Usually I quite enjoyed the attention and conversed for long periods of time about the highs and lows of pregnancy, but not today. I was not in the mood today. I was pissed off and overly emotional for no apparent reason. I was sad and my sadness only fuelled my anger which, in turn, made me sad. I was a crazed lady, my hormones were wild, my feet were fat, I was walking like a duck and needing to piss every five minutes; both my mind and body were tired. I couldn't cope with any additional stress.

Amazingly I made it through the three hours without crying, screaming or shouting any abuse at anyone. Obviously it would have been wrong of me to be rude to a customer. Very unprofessional. There was just the odd occasion where I really wouldn't mind stabbing someone with a liquorice sword or watch them choke on a gobstopper.

I couldn't wait to get back home. I knew exactly what I was going to do, I planned it all in my head on my bus journey. I was going to walk in, find some ice-cream, cake, biscuits, all that shit, find my cat, find some sweatpants and snuggle up in bed watching Bridget Jones's Diary because that woman and I seemed to have a lot in common, maybe slip in a little nap before this damn Halloween party.

And when I got home it was all just how I'd imagined. Everything was going wonderfully, according to plan; my cat was there, I was sprawled over the bed, ice-cream in hand and eyes glued to the plasma on the wall. I barely noticed Alice walk in and plunk herself down beside me I was that entranced by the woman Renée Zellweger was portraying so very well. I continued to gape at the screen, inwardly cringing and snorting to myself whilst mindlessly scooping more ice-cream into my mouth. In fact, it must have been a good thirty minutes before I remembered Alice was still sitting beside me.

The fact she was sitting there hadn't bothered me, it was the fact she was sitting there silently. I'd only ever watched one movie with Alice before but her incessant criticisms throughout meant I stopped watching fifteen minutes in. Silence wasn't something she did. I glanced over at her wondering what the fuck it was she wanted me to say, whether I was supposed to say something, and then turned back to Bridget. And then Alice. And then Bridget.

"Fuck," I finally sighed, gaining Alice's attention. Not that I had planned to say anything of use. "I really fucking miss cigarettes." I said after a brief pause. "And alcohol. Everyone has a drink and a cigarette in their hands in this movie." Pause. "Not sure which one I miss more though." I paused again. "Probably the cigarettes."

"Jasper," she said blandly.

I was confused. "What?"

She sighed. "Jasper, that's what's bothering. He's bothering me. I feel like he's being off with me and I just don't know what we're doing anymore. I'm not enjoying this feeling of… vulnerability almost. I'm powerless. This just doesn't happen, Bella. I feel like everything is beyond my control. We've been actually together for a little while now but all I can think is that I want more. Which is ridiculous, what more do I want? I have him now."

Well, at least I didn't have to carry on with pointless conversations to figure out what was going on. To be quite honest, I had become so totally consumed within my own life I wasn't really aware of what was going in anyone else's. Sure, I saw Jasper on a weekly basis but we rarely had the time to have in depth conversations. I turned up, he took his pictures, we'd have brief discussions at most and then I'd leave.

"You've had him for years, you just didn't realise," I muttered whilst running my hands over Hammy as he lay draped across my ballooned middle. Unfortunately, we'd reached a quiet part in the movie and although a mutter it definitely was, it became more audible than I'd hoped.

Alice stared at me for a while, not a considerable amount of time but long enough to make me feel uncomfortable. I wasn't sure whether I was supposed to just stare back at her with some kind of meaningful and understanding look, pat her hand as some form of comfort or just look away. I'm no expert in situations like this, I've never really had any close girlfriends who I shared gossip and emotions with. I spent a lot of my teen years either fucking my boyfriend, getting high or avoiding Charlie. I couldn't handle this.

In the end I went with looking at Hammy instead who was now awake and staring harshly at Alice. I wasn't sure what was happening but I was feeling pretty damn awkward.

"He talks to you about this stuff doesn't he? What he's feeling and such. He doesn't with me… it's like because it has taken years for us to get to this point, we're all go. Everything now. And that is what's making me feel so out of control."

"I haven't spoken to him properly in ages. Maybe you take too much time making sure everything is exactly how you want it to be. I mean, look how long it took you to get together. I don't know why Edward didn't just force you two into bed. Jasper's got you living on the edge, he's spontaneous and you're really not. Just roll with it. I mean, he's so obviously infatuated by you."

"He told me he loved me once. Only once though..." She stared off into nothing and sighed hopelessly. Who even was she right now?

"Oh fuck, Alice, c'mon. I'm gunna be honest, I don't have a fucking clue what is you want me to tell you. You know Jasper loves you. He knows it, I know it, Edward knows it, everyone knows it. And I don't get what "more" you want but have you tried maybe talking to him? Like, uh, that seems like a good place to start. You've got a really good thing with Jasper. I'm definitely interested in him. Wait… no I'm not, that came out wrong."

Alice narrowed her eyes as I waved my hands around, trying to find the words to dig myself out of the hole that was forming.

"I mean, not literally, but he's an interesting person. If it wasn't for Edward I wouldn't even know Jasper as well as I do now, so I wouldn't get involved with him. And you're involved. And I'm smitten with Edward, like, uh, totally. I mean completely in love and yeah… I'm not saying it would happen. Or that I want it to. Or would want it to… Because honest to god, I don't, no. He's, like, such a good friend. And Edward-"

"Ok, Bella, just stop. I get it." Alice put her hands up, shaking her head. I should have probably left her to do all the talking.

I frowned.

"I'm just saying, you're so good for each other. You're like opposites in the best way, you fill in the things he lacks and vice versa. That should be enough shouldn't it? Excuse the cliché but you complete other. I'd like to think Edward and I do, too, that's the "something more" in our relationship. That and a baby…"

For a moment we were both quiet, the rambling from the movie filling the otherwise silence. Eventually Alice sighed, "You're right." We both sat watching the rest of the movie but something was bothering me and I just had to air it.

"And I'd like to again highlight the fact I wouldn't go for Jasper myself. Edward is more than enough for me, thank you." Alice smirked and rolled her eyes.

"Bella, shut up, please. You talk too much, it just annoys me after a while."

I nodded, she was definitely right, I did talk too much. Well, too much shit anyway. We were quiet again, both watching Bridget Jones once again.

"I must say though," she started after a while, her eyes still on the film. "Out of all the whores Edward could have slept with, I'm glad he slept with you."

She didn't look at me but I couldn't help glancing over at her with a goofy expression I was trying to pass off as a smirk. I turned back to face the television still with the same expression. "I think that's the nicest thing you've ever said to me," I said, secretly planning to put "BFFL" next to Alice's name on the second of my life-plan lists.

"This woman is you by the way," she added.

I tilted my head at the screen. "Yeah, I know."

I spent the majority of the afternoon with Alice talking about the Halloween party and how ridiculous we were both going to feel dressed up. I decided it would be a laugh anyway, despite the probability of me being the only sober person in sight being high. Alice was her usual pessimistic self, claiming she was going to need all the alcohol she could get her hands on.

When Alice decided she was leaving and we went to make our way downstairs, I knew something was up. Edward's presence in the house was palpable; I wasn't sure quite what it was but whenever he returned home the house smiled. The house never smiled for me but when he was here everything was just, better. Even when something was wrong. The house didn't feel like it was smiling today though, it felt uneasy, like the bringer of bad news.

Edward was talking Laurent about something or other while reading a letter, they both laughed a little and Laurent looked up at both Alice and I before nodding and leaving. He still creeped me out more than anyone else but I gave him a polite smile before making a beeline for Edward's side.

"I had a shitty time at work today, thanks for making me go," I said as I put my forehead against his arm. His body jiggled a little as he laughed and then sighed, resting his head briefly on top of mine before kissing it and folding up the letter he has previously been reading.

I took a step back from him and smiled but he wasn't looking at me, he was looking at Alice. The two appeared to be sharing a brief exchange, Alice's eyes were questioning and Edward seemed to look away shyly before meeting her eyes again with a quick nod. For a moment, Alice looked elated but then she glanced at me almost sympathetically and Edward frowned.

"Ok, well, I need to go and see what Jasper is doing. Tonight is going to be awful," she moaned, pinching the bridge of her nose. "I mean seriously, fancy dress. The last fancy dress I attended was when I was ten years old. Ten. And I was a princess. But Jasper insisted we match or something so."

"I'm sure it won't be so bad, Alice. You do over exaggerate things," Edward snorted, the two of them continuing as if nothing had just happened.

"Well maybe it won't be so bad, and maybe that'll be because I plan on being completely drunk from the beginning of the night until the very end. Anyway, I'll see you later." She leant up to Edward's ear and whispered something before kissing his cheek and then turning to me and doing the same. She squeezed my hand before she disappeared and that simple gesture made my heart sink.

Alice lacked in sympathy, especially towards me, but that squeeze of my hand was most definitely sympathetic. Nothing seemed wrong as such, but something wasn't quite right. So as soon as the door shut I looked at Edward with narrow eyes and asked what exactly had just gone on.

"What was what?" he asked, when I questioned his and Alice's silent conversation. He was moving towards the kitchen so I followed behind, still completely lost and already a little annoyed.

"That. That thing you and Alice were doing. What was it about, because something has clearly happened and you haven't told me yet, so please tell me now."

He sighed, walking over to opposite side of the kitchen to where I was stood, leaning against a counter. "You couldn't let me build up to it or anything, could you?" I crossed my arms against my chest and waited for him to just say what it was. I can't say I knew what to expect, there wasn't anything I could think of that was truly terrible other than Esme's cancer getting worse, but he would be acting completely differently if that was the case.

"The meeting I went to this morning, it was, uh…" He scratched his forehead before running a hand through his hair, making it stick in all sorts of directions. He shrugged. "Well, there's good news and bad news. I got the promotion."

"Oh, Edward!" I nearly shrieked. "That's amazing, that's…" I shook my head, my smile so wide it was ridiculous. I knew how much he had wanted this, and Edward rarely wanted much, but he wanted this more than anything. And, as per usual, he was being trying to be so modest about it while I couldn't help but be thrilled for him.

He was proud of himself, the smirk that crept up on his face as soon as he said "promotion" really said it all. He had to be proud of himself, I sure fucking was. We both knew how much time and effort he put into his job and it seemed to all be coming together for him now. My heart swelled up and I instinctively went to hug him or kiss him, but he wasn't done and as daunting as it was, there was a "but", there was bad news, and that stopped me from moving any closer.

I covered my mouth with my hands, trying to calm my excitement. "Ok, what's the bad news?" I asked through my hands, not really wanting to acknowledge any "bad news" but fully aware there were some. Green eyes met mine and I bit my lip in anticipation.

"Edward, is it really bad?" I asked, wanting to at least brace myself if it was. And by brace myself I meant prepare the waterworks if necessary.

"No, no, it's just… it's just bad timing really." He blew out air exasperatedly. "I, uh, well, Aro really and the company, I guess, want me working with another branch in Europe. I'll still be based here, it just means I'll have to go over there a few times. And if I take the promotion then I'll be in London for two weeks in November or December and up to a month in January…"

I stood for a moment trying to comprehend what that meant. It took me longer than it probably should have to figure it out.

"I'd probably have to go back a few times after that, but not for as long and it would be quite a while afterwards."

I'd removed my hands from my mouth, instead putting one on my hip and using the other to play with my bottom lip, while I just stared at Edward. It was the in between bits, the things he wasn't saying that had me feeling quite queasy now but I didn't want to directly address what I was now beginning to fear. It wasn't him going away as such; I could deal with that easily enough. We had phones and laptops and the internet, communication would be fine, it was just the timing.

The timing was horrendous. The timing was the deal-breaker.

"Would you be here for Christmas?" I asked.

"I don't know…" He said, clearly distressed.

"Oh…" I moved my hand from my lip to rub my chest in my best attempt to calm the anxious feeling that was making itself known within my chest cavity and increasing the rate at which my heart was beating. "And January?" I could feel the clicking and wheezing start up again as I breathed in and out. "We're definitely going to have a baby by January."

"I know."

"We might have one at pretty much any time in December, Edward. And if you don't know when you're going or coming back… and anyway I might…"

My lungs felt as though they were being squeezed together, my airways felt restricted and if I wasn't careful an anxiety attack was definitely imminent. I was unsure whether Edward had noticed how physically distressed I was, other than my heavy breathing and rubbing my hand again and again over the exposed part of my chest, I thought I remained pretty composed. It was just a shame I was anything but on the inside.

The only reason I had been so calm up until this point about the baby was that I knew Edward was going to be there with me. If anything went wrong, if I happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, I knew Edward would be there. He was my life-line in all of this, the crutch that would keep me up. He was my one and only constant, and now he wasn't even that.

It wasn't that I was disappointed in him, it was not his fault this was all happening now, I just felt I no-longer knew where I stood. At present, I almost felt as though I'd taken a few steps backwards, it was as if my mind was having a relapse back to a few months before things were good, before things were certain. What if things did go wrong and Edward wasn't there? What if they went right and he wasn't there? I knew I would never be alone, but I didn't want to have a baby, my first child, without Edward. I wasn't even sure if I was mentally capable of doing so any more.

About thirty seconds passed before I closed my eyes and breathed out. When I opened them again, Edward had a hand out beckoning me over. I complied, closing the distance between us jutting my bottom lip out to emphasise my upset. He smiled, taking my hand and spinning me around so that he was hugging me from behind, his arms finding their way around my waist, his hands cradling my stomach.

Just his touch was soothing enough for me. At least for the time being I knew I was safe and everything was fine.

"I guess I'm just going to have to sew up my vagina until you get back," I joked.

Nevermind sewing up my vagina, really all I wanted to do was cry. Cry and cry and think up the worst possible situations where I end up in labour alone and dying and without Edward and… fuck.

"I haven't accepted the offer yet, they give you two days to think about it so-"

I turned my head to the side where his chin was resting on my shoulder. "Shut up, Edward. You're not turning this down, you'd have to be insane not to take this opportunity and I would be a seriously shitty girlfriend to let you."

"But I'd be a seriously good boyfriend for declining it."

"No, you'd just be retarded," I corrected, shaking my head. He chuckled, lazily turning his head into the crook of my neck, through my hair, placing gentle kisses everywhere before finally nuzzling his nose into my hair.

"I'll do what I can but I just don't want to leave you, especially like this. I don't want to miss out on anything but more than that I don't want you to be alone." Oh god. A huge lump appeared in my throat and I almost started crying then and there. I didn't want him to go, I didn't want him to miss out, I didn't want to be alone.

Fucking fuck. Fucking. Why.

I turned around, releasing myself from his grasp so that I could look at him properly. "I hope he has your eyes," I said, looking deeply into Edward's and putting my hand to his face. I'd never known anyone with green eyes before I'd met him, but there was something so entrancing about them I'd hoped and prayed LM had them too.

"You won't miss out because I'm sewing my vagina up, remember? If the worst comes to the worst you know I won't be alone, and the only thing you'll miss out on is what I imagine to be a very painfully and gory experience." I smiled, taking my hand from his face. "We'll figure it out, it'll be fine."

I wasn't sure who I was trying to convince here, him or me. In the end, neither of us looked particularly reassured, I could tell Edward still had his worries and uncertainties and I still had all of mine plus some. I wasn't sure what was going on anymore, I didn't know what decisions I was supposed to make from here.

To be honest I didn't really want to make any decisions, I just wanted to go to cry and then fall asleep. The last thing on my to-do list was attending this bloody Halloween party. I couldn't even consume any alcohol so I'd be drinking orange juice all night, maybe some lemonade if I was allowed to get a little bit crazy.

I should never have gotten out of that fucking bed this morning.


Taking a nap following Edward's announcement was probably one of the better choices of the day. My general bad mood had only been made worse by hormones and probably a lack of sleep, so I'd dragged Edward upstairs with me to bed, mainly because I was sad and needing something other than my body pillow to cuddle. Instead of crying, I'd decided to box up all of my emotions for now and leave them in the very back of my mind. Like Pandora's Box, it was probably best left unopened, but inevitably would have its contents exposed at some later stage.

Honestly, I didn't even know where to begin. I hit a complete brain fail as soon as I even tried to comprehend what was going on. For now, all I was going to take notice of was Edward and his achievement, everything else would just have to be dealt with at a later stage. Although I'd rather not have to deal with them at all. I didn't want to think about being alone…

"Are you alright?" Edward asked as he leant against the closet door, attempting to comb his hand through his slicked back hair and pull me from my reverie. I'd been sitting on the bed, leaning back on my hands to support my own body weight, waiting for Edward to perfect his outfit for what felt like forever. In reality, it was probably an additional five minutes.

I blinked, bringing myself back to the real world before sighing. "No, Edward, I'm not. I look like a prostitute." I looked down at my attire and then back at him. "Seriously, all I can see is boob, like, I can just about see my belly, that's how big they're looking."

"They're not that big, Bella, surely," he snorted.

"Yeah well, they're not attached to your chest," I grumbled, choosing to poke one of my breasts with a finger only to frown when I felt how full they were. I'd reached the stage where pregnancy was just becoming uncomfortable. It wasn't the lovely, relaxed, blissful experience it was but a month or two ago. No, now it was feeling a lot like hard work. Constant hard work and it only got worse not better.

Sometimes I visited a few pregnancy forums online in an attempt to find solace and I soon learnt you can always find people having just as miserable a time as yourself on the internet. It's a beautiful thing really. I almost cried when I saw I wasn't the only one to have sneezed and basically peed themselves. Edward hadn't appreciated that story so much but it went down a treat with the girls online.

Pregnancy was getting the better of me and I wasn't even sure what the "better" part of me even was. I just couldn't be bothered, I just wanted to sleep a lot. Sometimes all I could bear to do was paint, but even then I could only last so long before the smell of the paint proved too much. I managed a brave face for Olivia but Edward was really getting the back-end of this pregnancy. Mood swings, random crying, horniness, pissing at all times of the night and so on and so forth.

Needless to say, the fact I had somehow managed to force my elephant-self into a white body con dress all for the sake of dressing up, hugging absolutely everything there was to hug, exaggerating both my stomach and my boobs, had me less than impressed.

"You don't look like a prostitute. Prostitutes tend not to be eight months pregnant anyway."

"Yeah." I gestured to the length of my body. "This is why. No-one would want to pay to sleep with this."

"I would." Edward turned away from the mirror he was posing in to face me again, sweeping the red cape he had on around as he did, just the end of his devils tail peeking out from underneath. Edward was looking pretty damn fine as the devil. He'd been against wearing the standard red devil horns for fear of looking like a stripper, but as I actually looked like a whore, it really was the least he could do.

The black and red theme he had going on really was quite something. Something I wanted to rip off of him immediately. If I could be bothered…

He gave me a cheeky grin and a wink and I couldn't help but giggle. Pathetic really, the more I tried to stop it, the more forceful the need to laugh was.

"Oh god, how much have you drank?" I asked as I felt around the bed for my angel wings and halo.

"One glass. Not really a fan of drinking for the obvious reasons," he said somewhat serious. Oh yeah, alcoholic ex-wife, countless one night stands I'm sure and one of them resulting in a pregnancy; drinking's going well for you, babe.

I shrugged my shoulders, placing my halo on my head before pulling all of my loosely curled hair to one side. "Well, surely you're allowed to let your hair down once in a while. I'd love a bottle of wine right now, but obviously I'll be sober. I'd stop you from getting out of hand if needs be… which I highly doubt but, y'know. You've got something to celebrate, I might even get some super fizzy orangeade and join you."

Brushing down his black shirt and pants, he made his way over to me and held out his hands to help me up. I was just a huge ball of ridiculous; ridiculous heels, ridiculous dress, ridiculous boobs. Dear fucking god help me.

"Are you sure we're the right roles here? Maybe you should be the devil and I the angel."

"Pah," I scoffed while using his hands to propel myself upward. "That would just be too predictable, Edward." I kissed him quickly on the lips, having found my feet. "Simply too predictable".

"Is that so?" He snorted, clearly doubtful.

"Most definitely," I said, putting my arms into my wings. And thus we were complete. Glitter and all.

"We'll see…"


"How long do you think I should leave it before I stop him?" I asked Alice as we stood just to the side of a rowdy crowd in my brother's living room, heckling, clapping and whistling while the smooth bass of Hot Chocolate's You Sexy Thing played in the background.

She looked at me and shrugged. "I don't know." We both looked out at the scene in front of us before she snorted and added, "Never."

"Huh. Well as much as I love seeing him naked-" I started only to be interrupted my Alice putting her hand up in the air while slightly swaying. Whether she was swaying from her alcohol consumption or simply moving to the music I wasn't sure, I think it might have been a bit of both.

"Hey, woah, I have seen it all before, honey."

"Is that really something you want to see again though? I mean tomorrow morning when your head reminds you of how drunk you are, do you really want flashes of Edward's dick just swinging around in your mind?"

Alice laughed, finishing the last of the lethal-looking green concoction she had in a cup. "Look, all I know is I'm looking so hot tonight and so does my boyfriend and I'm actually having a good time. This is unknown territory for me but I'm not stopping either of them, you can do whatever you like." She bumped her ass into my side and smiled widely before shouting, "Take it all off!"

Honestly, who the fuck was this and what had they done with Alice.

I hated being the sober one at a party. No amount of sugary drink could get me past this slightly hyperactive stage I'd reached.

Hyperactive, what the fuck, am I five?

Everything seemed a bit surreal as I walked about the house. It was almost as if I'd been caught in some retarded time warp where I'd returned to a house party during my teen years, except I was still pregnant. And sober. Emmett and Rose had really pulled out all the stops with everything; decoration, food and drinks, and I was one of very few who could fully appreciate it. My vision wasn't distorted in any way shape or form, I saw everything and everyone for what it was. Unfortunately.

The house was full of people, laughing, dancing, music and the outfits were really rather impressive. Quite a few people had gone all out. I felt much more at ease upon my arrival seeing I was not alone and that there was indeed an array of prostitutes attending. Surely this would mean the sober pregnant one would be ignored, I thought. Unfortunately it didn't quite work out that way, apparently drunk people were drawn to me.

I was subject to a cornucopia of pregnancy jokes I hadn't previously been aware of, LM must have been hating the world for the amount of times people garbled bullshit at him, and my boobs had been groped a good ten times by different people. Admittedly, five of them were women; three of them checking they were real, one was comparing theirs to mine, and one just liked touching boobs apparently. Each to their own. The other two were Jasper, dressed as Mr Rabbit, and Edward. Edward being the worst offender, obviously. He'd be talking to me and then his eyes would wander down to my chest and his hands followed.

"Is the devil yours?" I looked to my left side to see a woman dressed as a cat, looking right back at me before looking at Edward. She seemed sober enough, unlike most others in the room.

"Uh, yeah," I said, not knowing whether I wanted to laugh or cry about it.

"Ah, the devil made you do it, huh?" She said, nodding at my bump and laughing. "My husband's Superman. Well, he thinks he is but I can tell you otherwise. I'm sure you'll see what I mean in a minute…"

Edward and Jasper along with three other guys dressed as Superman, Popeye and Harry Potter had decided to take part in a striptease. Edward's shirt was already off, Jasper had undone the rabbit suit he was in and also had his chest exposed, Superman and Harry were basically naked and Popeye was about to remove his underwear. I was doubtful over whether eating spinach had any effect on what was hidden underneath.

"Oh my fucking god…" I said into the hand that was over my mouth as items of clothing went flying about the place, much to the excitement of those watching. So this is what happened when I left Edward with alcohol and those also under the influence. Jesus Christ.

I was in two minds; one part of me wanted to join the drunken mob, chanting words of encouragement until we were down to the goods, maybe pulling out my phone and recording what was left of the show. The other part, the sober, pregnant part knew all to well that if Edward was in his right mind, he would probably not be so keen on dangling his cock, as breathtaking as it was, in front of a random group of drunks. Plus that shit was my property and the other whores in the room were looking a little too keen, despite the majority of them being married with kids.

Maybe I should have allowed him to leave the horns at home. I felt like the horns were bringing this side out. Oh God. And he didn't even want to drink. I was the worst kind of person, the kind of person who never did anything crazy themselves but always encouraged others to do them. I'm the kind of person also known as a pussy. And my powers of influence had clearly worked on Edward. I'd created a monster. Maybe not a monster, but definitely a drunk. This was my doing. And he was going to get naked and shake his tight ass cheeks about.

"Bella!" Rose squealed, throwing her arms around me dramatically. My face was being attacked by her golden curls; all part of her Sandy outfit from the end scene of Grease. Of course it was complete with the tight black leggings and tank top. "Look how cute you are being so fat, aw, baby girl. Fuck, Bells, your tits look amazing!" She turned to the cat woman still standing by me. "Don't her tits look amazing, woah!"

I wanted to roll my eyes but smiled anyway and was about to ask what I should do about Edward when she caught sight of Alice standing beside me and exclaimed to anyone listening, "My brother adores this girl! I love her, how hot is she!"

I snorted as I watched Rose gushing over her and Alice happy to receive the compliments. To be fair, as Jessica Rabbit, Alice was looking so good. How she managed to remain so classy at such an event was beyond me, it hadn't worked that way for me… Still, as soon as Emmett made an appearance dressed as Danny to match Rose, singing "I've got chills, they're multiplying!" immediately removing his top and throwing it aside as if to join the nearly naked men, I decided to make a swift exit. I did not want the images in my head, it was already bringing back bad memories. Luckily I found some candy in the kitchen which genuinely thrilled me despite having eaten a stupid amount of it already.

Bella Swan, always the life and soul of the party. Oh yeah.

I'd really come far with people though, being around them in social situations as opposed to work, but there was still a point that, when reached, I simply ran out of things to do or say and I still wasn't sure what to do then. Luckily the drunk witch, beer bottle, tampon and Mr T I'd come across so far hadn't noticed the lack of conversation on my side. I wish I was like Edward. He was like a social butterfly, he knew just what to say when to say and people just seemed so charmed by him. Before arriving he'd been worried about not "fitting in" or something along the pathetic lines of.

I told him to man-the-fuck-up and have a drink or two. Or five.

Of course for him, if all else failed he just took his clothes off.

"Oh my god, Bella, you have to…!" Alice fell into the kitchen in fits of laughter, unable to finish her sentence or stand straight without assistance. She reached out for my hand eventually, dragging me back to the other room while she stumbled ahead.

"Harry, I want your Basilisk in my chamber of secrets!" was the first thing I heard on entering the room aside from the stripper music and hooting and howling.

As soon as Emmett was in my peripheral vision I put a hand up to shield myself from him. There was just no way I was even risking it. Just a glimpse of his balls would no doubt have me hurling. I was feeling a little queasy just thinking about it. Alice took me back to where we had been standing previously and dear fucking god. I was about to die. Harry Potter had it all hanging out, as did Popeye. Popeye was literally about to pop eyes out with that thing, apparently the spinach really was working for him.

Luckily, luckily, and I thanked all the gods that there may or may not be, Edward, Jasper and Superman were still in their underwear. Still the thrusting was ridiculous and the movement from underneath the remaining material was seriously just freaking me out now. And, like his wife had said, Superman didn't seem to have the package expected from such a hero. I didn't even look in Emmett's direction but assumed the worst since Rose was going crazy.

I couldn't help but laugh. Everything was so fucking weird. Half an hour ago this was a Halloween Party, now it was a strip club. And I was so sober it was almost painful, I wanted to be drunk but hey. I had something to look forward to when Ethan was born.

Edward had been watching me ever since I'd reappeared and was pulling all sorts of poses as if it was for my benefit. This made me laugh more and worsened when he prowled over, looking at me like I was his prey. The hair that had previously been slick and sexy was now wild as he continually dragged his hands through it, leaving a tamed bush on top of his head. His shirt was lost forever, his pants somewhere on the floor and his red cape turned half way across his front.

When he started grinding up against me, I shrieked causing a rupture of laughter. It was terrible and it was quite hot as well which made it even more terrible.

"Ok, how much have you had? You stink of alcohol you know," I laughed as he went to attack my neck with kisses and nibbles. How he remained so sexy as a drunken mess was beyond me.

"Me?" He said between kisses, his voice slurred. "All sorts. I'm celebrating… Halloween, you smell so nice."

"Edward, you're such a dick, seriously," I laughed again. "A striptease, really? I didn't know that was your style."

He shook his head and shrugged his shoulders. "Stripteases are my speciality, Bella. And I will be willing to do them whenever. All the time. I love being naked and my dick. And I love you. I love you," he burbled.

I sighed. "Right." Taking his hand and giving an apologetic look to those who were still wanting more, I took the opportunity to remove him leaving his underwear intact.

"Aw, Bella, you're such a spoil sport, we've been dying to see what you've been working with," Rose said with a pout as I passed behind her, Edward following me like an obedient dog.

"Another time maybe," I joked. "I doubt you would have been able to handle in anyway," I said cheekily, winking at her just before we disappeared form view. Oh, look at me, throwing that in there.

Once in the kitchen, I pulled out a stool and sat on it holding Edward's hands in front of me, unable to stop myself from laughing again at just the sight of him. He seemed completely lost. The more I laughed the more confused he looked, he stared at me with such concentration his eyes barely moved from me. I knew that to be quite a feat since just a few seconds earlier he seemed unable to focus properly on anything.

"Are you laughing at me?" he asked, eyes wide and a slightly dejected look about him.

"Aw, baby," I cooed at him putting a hand to his face. "I love you, you're just… so drunk. And it's freaking me out a bit." I looked at him and smiled. People began to filter back through the house, behind Edward I could see Alice and Jasper in the hallway all over each other. I guess the show was over.

"I'm not actually…" He stopped, frowned and sighed, combing a hand through his hair. "I'm sorry that I have to go away. But when I'm back then it'll be good and fine and we can probably have sex but if not then I can just cuddle you instead." He kissed the top of my head, the smell of alcohol lingering over him.

A drunk Edward was a lovely Edward, child-like if anything. Not aggressive or loud and obnoxious, just the right amount of everything to make him entertaining and loveable. But as much as I appreciated his drunken words and adorable face, all I could concentrate on was my chest and the familiar yet fucked up pains I was getting there. I pressed a hand to it hoping the pressure would some how alleviate my discomfort.

Edward had tilted his head to one side and was looking at me with concern, unfocussed, drunken concern as soon as my hand had moved to my chest. It was painful in a sense but nothing I couldn't handle, just the price of being greedy I guess. But just as I opened my mouth to say "heartburn", something I was pretty used to having when I ate too much, all the air in my lungs was sucked out, I almost heard it leave my lungs but nothing was going back in. I sat up completely straight, my mouth open as I attempted and failed to put oxygen back into my lungs.

"I can't breathe," I said as panic began to set it. Air was going into my mouth but I just couldn't catch a breath. The more I tried the more I panicked, the more I panicked I began to realise I was starting to hyperventilate. The realisation that I was hyperventilating only caused more panic and before I knew it I was full on gasping.

"Edward, I can't breathe," I gasped. I was freaking out, and my freaking out was not helping but I couldn't help it, I automatically thought I was going to die. And Edward being drunk and slow took extra long to figure out I was having some sort of attack and that he seriously needed to do something because I didn't know what the fuck to do. All I could think of was sit here and cry until I had no air left and then die.

"I can't…" My valuable breath was being wasted on the repetition of the same useless sentence. At least now Edward was doing something about it, he was saying something to me and someone else in the kitchen had come over, too. I had no idea what was going on but my chest cavity felt like it was constricting tighter and tighter. All I wanted to do was breathe.

I just wanted to breathe.

By now Edward was fussing, Rose was panicking, Emmett had come barging in but only one person seemed to be talking any sense to me and I could barely hear them over my own panicking and now everyone else's. I did hear the word 'baby' though which only sent me into another round of hysterics, all the while holding Edward's hand as though for dear life.

If I couldn't breathe then where the hell was LM getting his oxygen from?

"Bella, you need to calm down," someone said but I wasn't really paying attention at all. It was all happening so quickly and my head was getting hot and dizzy and I couldn't breathe, or hear properly, or think properly. It continued for a while, this garbled mess, me gasping for air, the room getting hot, people making noise.

And then everything stopped.

This has taken me 6 months to write. How ridiculous is that. I know, I know. Oh how I wish to hug you all! Hello, hello, it's been too long! I've missed you, I've missed this, and although I don't feel completely happy with this chapter it's something and I feel like I owe it to you all…

You're going to have to tell me what you thought, more than anything I need to know what you liked/disliked, would like this to go etc etc. I crave constructive criticism. Plus there are only like 2/3 chapters left and I need to make them worth the read. Just realised I put Olivia's name in here once but made no reference to where she is... woops.

Sorry, I've missed you all so much I want to cry. I feel like I'm home again ugh. Oh and also, I was looking through this whole story on FF the other day and noticed the time lapses/break lines whatever they're called were missing! WTF. I'm sorry if you've had to read the whole story without them, I need to go through and put them back in. Honestly, I was like bitch no you didn't.

I'm going to write something on LJ later about ma life and what I've (not) been doing so. I'm xogossipgirl21, go find me.

Julia, I love you forever and a day. And then another day. Obviously, I'm just in love with you ugh.

I love you all, I'm sorry, forgive me, it's here, leave me reviews.