A/N: HEA's are in order!
Disclaimer: I only own the spectacularly cheesy scene that follows. ;-)
Pace... The thing was burning a hole in my pocket. She'd notice the lump right away, know something was up... Pace... She'd called an hour ago, said she was almost driving into Vancover... where was she? She knows exactly where my apartment is, she's been here enough in the last two years... Pace...
For a guy in med school, where everything seems like a waiting game, I was not good at well, waiting. The doctors I worked with liked to remind me that patience was a good thing, that it could lead to saving a life. I could work on that, stilling my hand when I needed to, learning when to rush, when time was of the essence. But waiting on my girlfriend to show up at my place so I could go ahead a propose to her already... that was the hardest thing I think I'd ever had to do.
Bella and I had excelled in the "long distance relationship" department. We both hated it, and bemoaned the miles on a daily basis, but we knew in the long run that it was the right decision for us. She settled into Seattle after a short stint of waiting tables in Forks, which she hated, and started working for a popular day-care center, which she loved.
Meanwhile, I had been working my butt off in med school. Oregon Health and Sciences University, or OHSU, was an amazing place to study- I couldn't wait to begin my internship and residency- but it was too far away from my girl. I begged her dozens, if not hundreds of times, for her to move down to be with me, but she had been steadfast. She wanted me to concentrate, learn all that I could. She deemed herself a distraction, and I hated to admit it, but she was right. My first year had been crazy to say the least- the second was meyhem. But I needed her, and I wasn't going to stand for distance any more. We'd talked more and more about living together, and now I just had this gut feeling- I was right. We were meant to be together.
Finally, finally, I could hear her key slid into the lock, and the door opening, the rain pounding behind her.
"God, that was a ridiculous drive!" she panted as she set all her bags down. Her hair was dark brown with rain, and coming around her face in strings. Her cheeks were rosy, maybe from running from the car, and her shirt was gloriously thin. "You'd think people would know how to drive in the rain by now. It is the Pacific Northwest and-"
I scooped her up into my arms, and kissed her deeply. Her lips were wet from the rain, and colder than usual, but she parted her lips, and her tongue was like fire against mine. Yes, I needed this... always. I needed her in my life every single day.
"Mmmm," I moaned, the words trying to burst from my lips even as I kissed her. "Mmm... Bella."
"Fuck yes, Edward," she sighed, curling her fingers into my hair and winding herself around me, soaking wet and I didn't care. All I cared about was closer, closer, closer.
We stumbled back, until her back was flush against the door, and I was half-tripping over her purse. We stayed like that for what seemed like ages, the only sounds in the room of our kisses and the rain outside the threshold. When I pulled back to line kisses up and down her neck, she shivered, and whispered, "I should stay away more often, if this is how you greet me when I get back."
"No, no," I moaned, pulled back to look her in the eyes. "That is the opposite of what I want, the complete one-eighty of my goal today."
"Your goal?" she smirked. Her fingertips traced the collar of my t-shirt. "I have several goals for you, Edward. And most of them have to do with being a lot more horizontal than this..."
I loved the way she thought. But I had more important things on my mind at the moment. "Maybe... after."
"After?" I loved the little wrinkle she got between her eyebrows when she was confused.
"After I finish asking you to marry me."
I was hallucinating. I was sixteen again, lost in love with my lab partner, and he had no idea who I was. I was shy, awkward, scared to talk to him. He was unreachable.
And reaching into his pants pocket for a small black box. OK, maybe not hallucinating...
"Bella... I can't live without you another minute. I know this isn't fancy... Hell, I can see through your shirt, for crying out loud!" I looked down and noticed just how chilly it really was in the room. Thin shirt, thinner bra. Oops. "But Bella, there's no one else in this world I want to spend my life with, and that's you. And I don't want to waste any more time."
He paused, like he was waiting for something from me. I gestured that he continue, unable to hold back the grin that was spreading across my face.
"So... I was wondering- hoping- I mean... I wanted to ask..." He was so nervous! I wished I had a camera so I could take a picture of him, he was practically sweating! I loved it. "Will you marry me?"
"Yes," I said, without a moment's hesitation, nodding enthusiastically and feeling tears pricking up in the corner of my eyes. "Yes Edward!" I leapt into his arms again, and he kissed me deeply. We were so excited the kiss didn't last long, but a series of quick, smacking kisses followed before he pulled back to secure the ring on my hand.
"Someday I'll replace this with something bigger," he promised. "When I'm a successful doctor."
"You pompous ass," I laughed. "It's beautiful." It was; it was a silver, or maybe platinum, with tiny diamonds encircling it, and no solitaire. I loved it. "This ring is never leaving this finger, Edward, and I don't care what you say."
He took my hand in his and lifted it to his lips, kissing my finger over the ring. My heart melted. "I love you Bella."
"I love you Edward. Forever," I promised. And ever, I added silently in my head.
A/N II: Awww... thanks for reading! (If you're still reading at all...)