A/N: I'm back! And this is the epilogue. You have my sincere apologies for the terribly long wait.
Disclaimer: I do not own Twilight.
(10 years later)
"Caiden, can you come down here please?" I called, grinning at Jasper as he walked in the door. "Hi honey, how was work?"
"Not too bad," he responded, a slow smile working its way up. "I got a raise!"
"That's terrific! And it's just in time, too," I said. Jasper looked momentarily confused.
"Just in time for what?" asked Caiden as he came down the stairs.
After that first date with Jasper, things only got better. I went to school for early childhood education after taking a year off to get our finances in order. During that year, I worked full time at the local daycare while Jasper worked part time and majored in (what else?) history. He was particularly fond of the civil war era, even going so far as to get into heated discussions about why the south should not have lost. Now he works for the History department at the local community college, and he absolutely adores his job.
After I told my boss that I needed to lessen my hours so I could start college, I was granted a partial scholarship. On my last full day, my co-workers threw a party for me. It was during that party that my boss informed me that as long as I continued to work there until I graduated, my entire education would be paid for – books, courses, and all. I cried, of course, and thanked him until I was blue in the face. Thanks to him, instead of just getting an associate's degree, I continued until I finished my bachelor's – specializing in working with autistic preschoolers.
Now I was kind of a freelance agent. I was paid very good money to work one on one with severely autistic children, and because of that I was able to devote some time to volunteering to work with those children whose parents couldn't afford me. I didn't think it was right that people with less extra money be denied the help they needed.
Caiden, my beautiful fourteen year old brother, never outgrew calling us mom and dad. When he got a little older, we sat him down and explained everything to him – his real parents, his early years, his adoption, etc. – and emphasized that no matter what happened in the past or will happen in the future, he would always be our son. So far, he's never been worried.
As he got older, he only grew more and more charismatic – so much so, that you would never believe he refused to speak until he was three. The boy could talk any other boy into walking away from a fight, and could probably charm the pants off of any girl at his school. Thankfully though, he seemed more interested in his video games than the girls. For now.
"Mom?" he said now, jolting me out of my thoughts. "You okay?"
"Yeah, sorry," I laughed. "I was just thinking."
"About what?" asked Jasper, wrapping his arm around my waist. I looked down at his hand as it curved around my hip, grinning to myself as I remembered our wedding.
Jasper had proposed the day after I graduated college, and the wedding had been the following summer. Caiden had been the best man, and Alice had been my maid of honor. It seemed wrong to have to choose between her and Rose, but Alice was the closest thing I had to a mother now. Edward gave me away, and Edward and Alice's twins Harvey and Liana were the flower girl and ring bearer. Oh, that's right – my uncle had finally gotten the guts to marry Alice just after we graduated high school.
For our honeymoon, we took Caiden to Disneyworld. Jasper had sensed my nerves about leaving Caiden behind, and Caiden had been openly worried about whether we would come back. So when he suggested a family vacation instead of a romantic honeymoon… I hugged him until I thought he would split. He always seemed to know just what we needed. We had just assumed that we'd take the time for our honeymoon before we started our own family.
"Well, I was thinking maybe Italy would be a nice place to finally take our honeymoon," I said, giving Jasper a sly smile.
"Ew," said Caiden with a look of disgust. "Why did I need to be here for that?" I laughed, while Jasper put the pieces together.
"Does this mean…" he began, looking at me with cautious hope. When I nodded, he let out a whoop and swung me around before kissing me hard.
"Ew," Caiden said again. "If someone doesn't explain soon, I'm going back to my room. I don't need to be having nightmares tonight." I turned in Jasper's arms, to face my son.
"How would you feel about having a sibling?" I asked cautiously, watching Caiden's face. He made an odd expression, before shrugging with a bored look on his face.
"Do I have a choice?" he asked blandly, while my heart sank. Jasper's grip tightened on my waist.
"No," he said roughly. "You don't. If you can't at least act happy for your mother, then just go to your room." Caiden spun around and headed for the stairs, but not before I saw the look on his face.
"Jasper," I said softly once Caiden was gone. "It's okay. Let me talk to him, okay?" He nodded, and swung me around once more before letting me go.
I knocked on Caiden's door, listening for him to invite me in. When I heard a muffled "go away," I let myself in instead. I found Caiden lying face down on his bed, and sat down next to him. He turned his head to face the wall opposite from me.
"I said 'go away', not 'come in'," he said roughly. I put my hand on his back.
"I know," I said. "But I ignored it. Can we talk?" Caiden ignored me, obviously using my words against me. I sighed.
"Caiden," I began. "How old are you?"
"Fourteen," he said with a bemused tone.
"How long have I loved you?" I asked. I grimaced when he shrugged, and socked his shoulder. "Fifteen years, you brute!" He rolled over and looked at me, and I saw the telltale signs that he had been crying but tried to cover it up.
"If I'm only fourteen, how could you love me for fifteen years?" he asked.
"I loved you ever since I knew you existed," I told him. "When our mom said that she was pregnant, I loved you then. And I've never stopped loving you, even when you've been a total brat. And I never will stop loving you, even if you decide to hate me for wanting more children."
Caiden winced, his eyes seeking mine. "I don't hate you, Momma," he said quietly, reverting to an old name for me that I thought he had outgrown. "I'm just scared you'll love this kid more than me." I pulled him up into a sitting position and hugged him fiercely.
"I could never love anyone more than you," I told him. "I'll love this baby just as much as you, but I won't love you any less. Neither will your father, I promise."
"She's right," Jasper said from the door way. "I'm thrilled to have a biological child, of course." I wanted to kill him when I saw Caiden's face fall. Jasper sat down next to me.
"But I would never in my life change anything about you," he said. "I love you just as much as I love this baby." He rubbed my belly gently. Caiden looked at each of us and pulled us in a group hug.
"I'm sorry," he said. "I love you guys."