AN: Well after thinking about it… for a while (me and my thinking) I thought it would be interesting to get things from Edwards perspective. Remember this is post eclipse/pre breaking dawn.
Just a forewarning: This thing is a shit load longer… not a little longer, it's a lot longer… 3,000 words longer. But please don't let that scare you off. If you wanted an EPOV, this is it in all it's family fluff and glory. Enjoy, and R and R, let me know if I got Edward right.
Oh and thanks to my reviewers that I couldn't reply too, reviews are candy and candy makes my day (Thanks y'all)
Ease Off The Clutch Leaving Your Soulless Thoughts Behind
I had managed to steel my love away from Alice a short while ago. It had required a fair amount of pleading on my part, but she gave in. She knew that she would but she still couldn't resist torturing me sometimes. She knew how hard it was for us to be apart… well Jasper knew… and it was harder for me to be away from her rather than the other way around no matter what Bella thought. Right now we were on our bed, in our room kissing. I loved kissing her more than anything. But it was hard to keep it at just that… kissing.
She always, Always underestimated my control. I had lost control once before, in the meadow. If she had let me… I don't know if she'd still be alive. That thought always made me sick with myself. I just want her to be happy and it… it figuratively kills me to know that I can not. I know what she's asked of me, but I don't honestly know if I can fulfill that wish. God knows I want to. Jasper knows I want to. Alice knows I want to. Emmett has not stopped teasing me that I haven't. Esme wishes I would have more faith in myself. Carlisle has more faith in me than I deserve. Rosalie doesn't care, that's nothing new.
"Bella." I pulled away from our kiss. I knew she was getting frustrated, especially after the meadow. But I couldn't move past a certain point. When I stopped caring about my worries, when they seemed irrelevant and contrite… that's when I had to pull away. If I didn't, I don't know if I could stop. I know it hurts her. It hurts me to know that I'm once again, and always the cause of that pain. But no matter what I say, no matter what she thinks, her initial reaction is always rejection.
"Edward." She bit back. I sighed, if only she knew. If only I could properly tell her how hard it was to stop. I never wanted to stop. It always hurt when we did, because I wanted more, I wanted to give her more. But the rubber band was being wound tighter. Maybe if we had started exploring our… reactions to each other earlier, it wouldn't have been so dangerous. But, things had been so tense between us then. I could blame the dog, but it wasn't his fault, it was mine for not believing her, for not letting her do as she wanted.
"Bella…" So much I wanted to say, yet could not express. "Love you know I don't want to stop" She looked me in the eye deliberately. It was so easy to get lost in her eye's. I always had to bite back the smile that always wanted to emerge at her reaction to being "dazzled". I had to remind her to breath. There would be a day, possibly, when she would stop breathing, when she wouldn't need to breath. We could spend hours on end just staring in each others eye's dazzling each other.
I looked to the window in guilt… guilt for wanting such a thing. How could I want this life for her. How could she want it. Didn't she understand, she had to understand, didn't she? So long ago, it had been me she said 'yes' to. I screwed up, yet she still chose me over the dog… over Jacob. I was such an idiot. I still am an idiot.
My phone buzzed and I took it out.
*Give the phone to Bella* I handed the phone to Bella,
"It's Alice." I checked my sisters thoughts to see what she wanted but she was humming the Bridal March in her head. That worked even better than any annoying song or translation she could come up with. Not only did it block me, it got me side tracked rather quickly. And most annoying of which is, she knew it. There was another text and Bella flipped the phone shut putting it on the side table. She took a deep breath looking slightly apprehensive. I really wanted to know what this was about. Bella leaned against the head board and brought her knees to her chest. She let out the air and began talking.
"Edward, what kind of damage do you think my Truck's engine would take if you somehow managed to go from, say… ten miles per hour, to lets say 65, in a few seconds."
Kill the Truck! A thought from both Emmett and Rosalie. I couldn't keep the smile off my face.
"We could find out." I said hopefully. It would surely die. Then I could finally give her the Guardian. She needed it, and I'd feel a lot better if she were driving that. Regardless the truck would be dying soon anyway, of purely mechanical failures. Engineered mechanical failures. But it's not like Emmett destroyed anything. Bella rolled her eye's not knowing of the imminent engine failure for her beloved and decrepit truck.
"I've never tried to go 65, we have no idea how my truck would handle that, let
alone in such a short period of time." What was she getting at… did she actually want a new car? I doubted it, but one never knew.
"Love, whatever you need to say just say it, if you want another…" She cut me off.
"Would you shut up about my truck?" I raised an eye brow. I really wanted to be in her head right now. It would make this so much easier. At least I think it would. It depended where this was going. "Ok, just so you know what track you're brain should be on, I'm going to compare you to a motorcycle." I was desperately trying not to laugh.
"Okay." I was trying to mute my siblings but Jasper was finding this amusing. But he wasn't thinking about it so I couldn't tell why. Perhaps Alice had told him something.
"What happens to a motorcycle when you just let off the clutch?" My brain went to her riding a motorcycle. Then it got sidetracked by the thought of where she would find such information from, who she learned it from…Jacob. My mind wasn't there long though. She didn't bother waiting for an answer, "The bike shoots forward, and generally the person riding said bike gets hurt." Her blush was incredibly deep, but her metaphor clicked quicker in the brains of my brothers than in my own.
Eddie, you don't want Bella to get hurt when she's ridding you, do you. I really, really wanted to smack Emmett, however at the moment I was currently glued in my position looking down feeling like a positively stupid idiot. Jasper was laughing his head off at our embarrassment and Emmett was just being Emmett and I really do not want to go there. Alice slapped the back of his head for it.
Even Rosalie was chuckling. Got to giver her props for that one. I can only imagine the deer in the headlights look he's probably got on right now. Can't believe she had the guts to say that. It was probably the most she had thought about Bella without something derogatory to think… ever. Esme was quietly trying not to think about the implications of that statement, and succeeding fairly well.
Oh, good. Carlisle's here. Alice's Bridal March stumbled as that thought leaked out. His car was in fact coming up the driveway. He wasn't due back for an hour.
I wonder what's so important it would be "devastatingly catastrophic" for me to miss. Devastatingly catastrophic? I didn't have any more time to think about it. Alice had a small vision of Bella quietly retreating in shame. My phone buzzed again. I saw what Alice typed in and made no move to grab the phone. Bella grabbed it and received another text. Bella looked slightly surprised, but accepting. She continued.
"So, my point is, in order for the um, the rider to avoid getting hurt, they ease off the clutch slowly. Each bike is different, so no matter what you do or don't know about bikes, you have to get used to how much speed comes from how much you let off of your clutch before you bother to go full throttle. Even more so for newbie's. Even more important than knowing how to go forward is how and when to use the brake. I know you said you're still… keeping things light, because you're control beyond some imaginary line has since, disappeared. But testing the break is going to be as important as testing the speed on the clutch. Is this making any sense?"
She does have a point Edward. Jasper of all people, to agree to something like that. Emmett spoke out loud connecting a few dots surprisingly.
"Think that's what she meant by never having gone 65 in her truck?"
"That… thing can't hardly go over 55, of course she's never gone 65." Rosalie grumbled.
"Hmm, Going from 10 to 65, would kill it." Jasper added.
"It's not capable of such, that's why the motorcycle is a better Metaphor. Hey Carlisle."
"Alice, please tell me that I didn't come home to listen to Bella talking about Vehicles." Emmet snorted, replying,
"It's about metaphor's doc, not the Vehicles themselves." Carlisle raised an eye brow at Emmett. Alice gave Carlisle a summery as Esme retreated down stairs to join everyone else.
"Don't worry you missed most of it anyway. And no I didn't drag you home for you to listen to Bella trying to get Edward to understand that it's probably within everyone's interest for them to slowly work their way from chaste kisses to making love, rather than just have it be a large jump. Bella's already proven that large jumps don't work."
"Ah." First I can't believe Alice just made a joke out of Bella's "cliff diving" stunt. Second I can't believe all Carlisle said to that was 'Ah'. That's all he thought.
Not often Carlisle's in complete shock. That's an understatement Jazz.
Edward you stupid idiot, say 'YES' what was Alice talking… oh right.
"Yes." I was still confused I was looking down trying to dig whatever Alice was hiding out of her. Damn Bridal March. I was about to retreat when I made the mistake of listening too long.
I'm sure there has to be some kind of Irony here. The truck and the Bike are both from the Mutt. And here she is trying to break down some of Edwards physical boundaries. My heart dropped several stories. My unbeating heart. It wouldn't be a problem if she had chosen Jacob. This conversation wouldn't even need to happen. Even if it did, he'd get it right off the bat. He understood her as I never could. Why did she chose me when he would be better for her. I'm selfish, I want her, she's everything to me. But I don't know how she can put up with me. After all I've put her through, she said yes, time and time again when all I have done is hurt her, over and over.
What the Hell? Shit. Jasper could tell, he knew something was wrong. Everyone was sitting at dining room table at this point. Everyone saw Jasper glance upward in concern.
"Jasper?" Alice asked.
"Self-loathing Edward just made a visit." Rosalie face looked horrified for a split second. Then it was gone.
Edward I didn't mean it like that. I… Her thoughts were a jumbled mess. The most common image that came up was us getting off the plane from Italy. That guilt, though buried, reared it's head every so often. So quietly Bella had no chance of hearing me I whispered,
"It's hardly your fault for thinking what you will." Everyone looked at Rose, Alice glared menacingly. Jasper calmed her and Emmett held Rose close. It wasn't her fault I was listening. It was rather Ironic. I wondered if Bella noticed. Knowing her she probably did. I closed my eye's trying to burry my thoughts away. She climbed over to me and lifted my chin. My eye's still closed.
"Edward look at me." I wasn't sure what my eye's would be like, "Please." I could refuse her nothing. I opened them but looked towards the end of the bed. I wanted to tell her I was okay.
"Bella…" She cut me off, again.
"Edward what does it take to make you forget your self hate and remember the strength of our love? What made you change your mind in our Meadow the first time we were there, the last?" How could I answer that. She made me forget. It didn't matter that it was because of her I felt more like a monster than I had in years previous to meeting her. Now, she just made me forget. I forgot everything but her. My light, my meteor in my darkest night. She was everything. I looked in her eye's, trying to make her understand. It was her, only her. No other could make my heart feel as if it could still beat, no other made me think that this existence was worth living.
"Breath." I made her stop breathing, I could suck her dry. I could hurt her, I could kill her, but I had done far worse… far far worse. I only live with my mistakes, knowing that she and Jacob suffered from my stupidity. My fault, always my fault.
"What?" How could I answer her? Truthfully, she deserved it. It seemed that I had made a hobby out of lying to her, of keeping her in the dark. He never did. He knew she could handle it. He knew that she deserved to know. I knew I was falling, falling fast. I didn't know how to climb back up. I could not form a perfect answer so I just… started talking, everything that had been stuck in my brain fell out onto my tongue, unfiltered. I don't know if it even made any sense. I just wanted her to understand. She never seemed to understand. She had believed the lie so easily, when I left. But only she could pull me out of my depression, only she could light up my world.
"Just, you. Always you Isabella. Your silent mind, your selfless nature, your love. Your touch drives me mad with want, two very different wants. Even with the burn you make me forget… forget that I'm dangerous, forget what I am. Forgetting is dangerous, especially around you. I can't forget my strength lest I crush you, I can't forget the burn lest I bite you, drain you. I can't forget, but you make me forget; the knowledge that there is a point in my own mind that I know I'll forget, is what makes me pull away now, not your blood. That point is when the man takes over the monster while the monster lies in wait for an unsuspecting moment, when I'm not paying attention, when the instinct to drain you overcomes the need to love you. When I offered… in our Meadow, your selfless nature made me want to put you above all else, so much so that I forgot that I'm dangerous. It was the fact that you somehow felt something for me, a soulless creature of the night, the first time I took you there." Please understand, love. I need you to understand. I love you so much. I looked down unable to hear her once again discount my fears.
Her left hand knotted in my hair and she brushed the knuckles on her right hand along my jaw line. She said nothing. I let myself sink into her presence. I needed her, and here she was offering the simplest of comforts. I closed my eye's and took a deep breath letting her blood scorch my throat. I truly was a masochistic lion. The incredible burn her blood created in my throat was easy to ignore, the monster was well chained through practice and 'mind over matter'. But when I didn't ignore it. When I indulged my senses and my brain to feel her burn, to focus on it. It calmed me as even Jasper could not. It was natural, it was easy. The pain brought relief… her beating heart brought hope. I knew she was alive. I knew that she was here with me.
Her right hand trailed down my throat to my Adams apple. It was only then that I noticed what I had unconsciously done. Emmett couldn't help the laugh, he laughed at everything that came at my expense now a days. I would have laughed myself to be honest. I had never had the 'purring' reaction before. As far as anyone else knew it only happened after and sometimes during making love with their mate. It was a sound of utter peace and bliss. That was hardly were we were at, I wasn't peaceful or blissful. Only calmed by my own pain.
"Soulless huh?" The sound stopped immediately. I could feel Carlisle's mental flinch as well as Alice's excitement. Her internal happy squealing had overpowered any need for the March. I hadn't heard Alice this happy since… well since just shortly before she got to 'actually' meet Bella. I opened my eye's an looked up to meet her almost parental scowl.
"Bella you know how I feel about that."
No dip Sherlock. Alice. Whatever was coming… I had the strangest of feelings it wasn't going to be pleasant. Bella moved and laid on her back, patting the space beside her. I leaned on my hand while laying on my side. She was looking at the ceiling contemplating something.
"I once told you that you were going to come home to something that would make angry grizzlies look tame, that didn't end up happening… You're cashing in your rain check." I'm surprised everyone downstairs didn't break out in applause. I remember getting that phone call. Being sleepy and susceptible to my… charm, definitely worked in my favor, we saw no Grizzly Bella. Everyone was actually disappointed, they were looking forward to the show. Even though Alice knew it wasn't going to happen, she was still disappointed. Rosalie especially was hoping she would kick me in the ass. Though Esme didn't like fighting, she was interested in how the human would surpass Emmett's favorite meal. Carlisle was much the same. Everyone at the table was looking at Alice who had a wicked grin on her face. The nervousness set in. Jasper was more than amused.
"Okay." My attention was back here on Bella, but I could still see Alice smiling brightly at Esme.
Nothing will prepare you Edward. Just let her say what she needs to say. Okay Alice. Then Bella spoke. Alice as always, was right. Nothing could prepare me.
"Does Esme have a soul?" I didn't bother to hide the shock of the question. No one downstairs did. Esme was leaning into Carlisle looking down. How could I possibly answer that question. I… I couldn't. Bella knew that, she knew exactly what she was doing. That meant she had thought about this a lot. This was the perfect time to get me to listen. I gave her the perfect intro. I doubted this was what she was planning on talking about. But Alice knew, Angry Grizzly's be damned. She continued.
"By your definition, she doesn't." I couldn't keep the grimace off of my face. "You know what I think about that? I think it's bull shit." Esme was struggling to maintain composure. As was I. She was my mother in nearly every sense. "I practically raised myself while watching over Renee. Esme is the mother I never had and never knew that I wanted until I had her. How the hell do you think that makes me feel, to know that You think she doesn't have a soul?" I was looking up at the ceiling. Esme was dry sobbing, her thoughts jumbled and incoherent. Jasper was attempting not to cringe. Her emotions were everywhere.
I don't think Bella will ever be able to comprehend the effect she has on us. What her words mean to Esme. Carlisle was right. Alice was practically jumping in her seat. Her smile now directed towards Carlisle. Was Bella going to go through everyone? She pushed my arm off and I tried not to let her distance pain me. I laid on my back looking up as she began to pace.
"Carlisle, yet another parent figure. Charlie's great to live with but he's never… even when grounding me or when he's acting like a father, he's more like a quiet friend, like my mother, though far more responsible. Phil, he's someone I entrusted Renee too, nothing more. But Carlisle, he's the kind of father you can trust with anything; and know he won't judge you. He treated you as the prodigal son when you returned from your rebellious stage, did he not?" It was dead silent downstairs.
He is my son. I created him, how could I not. I didn't deserve it.
"After all that he's been through, after all the years of perseverance to become a doctor and living alone, after all the lives that he's saved… after all he's done for this family, for You… Does that description really hit you as a soulless person?" I looked out the window unable to meet any look that Bella might give me. He was my father, to hear her question phrased as it was, was not an easy thing to leave unanswered. Bella had thought about this for a long time.
Esme smiled at this, having calmed down. No, he must have a soul. It seemed like something I would readily agree to, except that… I didn't believe that. Carlisle was still smiling at Bella's words. He had already considered her a daughter for a while, but to hear that she felt much the same was somewhat of a relief for him.
"Rosalie," I honestly thought she would be last. So did everyone downstairs. Besides Alice of course. As much as Alice disliked Rosalie still for her actions that led to Italy, she was now smiling at her. "the older sister: the one I look at with envy. Not just because of her good looks, but because of the confidence she holds herself with. After what she's been through, one look at Emmett and quite a hike home just to save him later, and you know there's more behind the bitch façade." That elicited a few laughs, Rosalie smirked at it. But Bella wasn't done. "Rather than just let me be ignorant of what it is that I want, she told me her story to tell me what I was giving up, what I could have instead. Does a soulless person do something like that?"
What? I… but… It was two sentences. Two sentences that left Rosalie wordless. When I had come home, I had admittedly not been happy she had told her. But at the same time it was her story to tell, and having her tell it at least meant that she was almost accepting Bella. Rose knew the likely hood of it changing Bella's mind was minimal at best, yet she had tried anyway. She had thought that Bella would find her last ditch effort to be pointless. I did.
"Bella really doesn't think like any one else does she?" I closed my eye's as a light chuckle surrounded the table from Emmet's statement. Man I haven't seen Rosy this bad since… after the phone call. I had seen glimpses of the after affects of Rosalie's thoughtless call through Everyone's mind. More so from Emmet than anyone. The resemblance of a broken Rose was uncanny.
After everything I've done… how can she see the good in my actions? The simple answer, she was my Bella. Alice was looking at Emmett now. He was most interested in what she had to say.
"Emmett, the big brother, and the little brother at the same time. Such a kid, yet such a pervert." Rosalie managed a snort, trying to find her composure. "With as much fun as he has in… death… he so easy to laugh at, and laughs at everyone just as easily. He's the protector, the guy you know has your back. Really how can someone like Emmett not have a Soul? It just doesn't make sense to me, how a vicious yet sweet teddy bear could possibly be soulless." Emmett had a huge smile on his face after 'big brother'. His teeth were now clenched and his lips pressed tightly together with his eye's closed.
Emmett… Jasper had never felt the kind of happiness that was coming off of Emmett, from Emmett ever before. It was the kind of happiness that could make a guy loose it. He was holding it in, but he was extraordinarily glad that Bella saw him as a protective older brother, because he saw her as a younger sister that needed protecting.
Rosalie leaned into him and closed her eyes just resting, letting their calm return. I had stopped breathing to prevent any emotion from making it to the surface, god knows what was brewing, I couldn't put a name to the emotions, Jasper wasn't even trying. Emmett did seem like the kind of guy that couldn't loose his soul. He was just like that. But it didn't… it didn't make sense. Alice was glowing with pride now. It's intensity had Jasper on the edge of his seat, figuratively.
"Alice, the best friend I've ever had, my sister, Your sister. We all know she can be a handful, always meddling, but how could anyone not love her?" Jasper smiled. "When she was here after our… adventure in phoenix, she helped me, a lot." Alice had avoided thinking about that. In general… I avoided her thoughts when she did. I had no wish to see Bella in the shower naked. It would have done the little of my remaining sanity in. "We talked a lot. When I need a girl to talk too, I think of her first, I know I can trust her... And not just because she can see the future." Alice grimaced slightly at what was coming.
"When it comes to her make over's… I honestly don't like being "Bella Barbie," but I'm willing to amuse her because she doesn't have any memories of what it was like to be human, yet she enjoys shopping and works magic with make up. No human memories and yet, she was so comfortable with me already when I first stepped in this house, she has so much energy, such a welcoming presence." Carlisle and Esme chuckled at that. Yes, she feels more than welcome where ever she goes. Carlisle would never forget Alice's introduction into the family. Alice smiled rather sheepishly at him and he smiled back lovingly. "Would someone without a soul be able to be like that?" If they had souls, I… I couldn't accept that I had a soul.
"Last but certainly not least." Alice smiled widely at Jasper her excitement at it's height. Jasper couldn't help but wonder what Bella thought of him
"Jasper, the newest to being a vegetarian, the brother in the background. He tries so hard for Alice, for himself, for everyone, despite his… upbringing. So many feelings and thirsts while fighting his own. Always managing to make you feel calm when under… other circumstances you probably wouldn't." She paused. Everyone looked at Jasper. He shook his head.
"It's all her."
"He's lived through so much and yet he tries to make the best out of it with what he has and the choices he makes; you all do. Doesn't that sound human? Doesn't that sound like someone with a soul?" I attempted to be subtle, but I was desperately holding back cries of anguish. 'Doesn't that sound human.', 'trying to make the best out of it with what he has and the choices he makes; You All Do, what was that supposed to mean. We weren't human, we… My own thoughts were a confused mess, a mess I didn't want to deal with so I listened to everyone downstairs. That wasn't much better. Everyone was going through the same difficulty as I was. Oddly enough the most coherent besides Alice was Jasper.
Doesn't that sound human? Jasper closed his eye's. She really didn't know him that well as it was difficult for him still. The brother in the background. The brother… Bella didn't spend much time with him, yet she had still picked words that would affect him. Human? The least human of all of us… Doesn't that sound human? That small sentence was ringing around in his head like a never ending echo. He smiled at her question. He opened his eye's and looked at Alice who had the largest smirk on her face he had ever seen.
That's my Jazzy. Alice indicated that Bella wasn't done. She probably hadn't talked this much at one time since my Spanish Inquisition when I first 'let the chips fall where they may'
"She really doesn't think like other humans does she?" Emmett burst out again.
"Doubtful." Carlisle answered.
"I can't imagine where we would be without her though." Everyone… All of them agreed with our mother. She was my Bella. And she was a part of this family.
"The rest of this is relatively new." Alice spoke.
"Wait how old was this other stuff?" Emmett asked. He had my full support in having the question answered.
"Oh it's been here and there, she always looses her guts when she wants to say anything, not wanting to seem sappy. But this has been building ever since we got back from Italy. To be honest, the first I saw of this was after Carlisle talked with Bella while removing the glass. It's changed here and there into what it is now. But the rest of this stuff it newer. After the almost deflowering."
"Wait what?" It was shouted by more than one.
"Whoops did I say that out loud?" Alice was going to get it later. She giggled. Yeah.
"Wait is that what they were talking about for the Meadow the last time?" Alice just smiled and Emmett laughed, as he does so easily. More teasing material.
I had calmed down some. The light hearted conversation had helped everyone despite my impending torture from Emmett. I noticed Bella's pacing had slowed, it was only a few seconds more before she started talking.
"I've never been that religious, Renee has been through so many "phases" it's not really funny. Christianity was one of those phases, so I know my fair share, I used to have all the popular quotes memorized, but there is one that I vaguely remember from 1st Corinthians. 'And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.' Love was created by god right? How can anyone love unless they too were created by god? And who is god to create a being and leave them without a soul?" I pinched the bridge of my nose as Carlisle's thoughts began going faster than even I could run. She was throwing his kind of reasoning around now, only it made sense now. Everyone down stairs had their own opinion of this, but love, that was something we all shared.
"Clearly love is something vampires are more than capable of. Hell, James and Victoria loved each other right?" I growled at that. I had missed it. I was so focused on James I had completely missed it. It had caused so much pain.
It's not your fault Edward. Only Jasper… he knew what it was to make a mistake. Ours were different, but as much as I had been shoving the fact that Bella's birthday wasn't his fault, it seemed only fair that he would do the same for me… whether I wanted it or not.
"I'm sure they had souls as much as Bonnie and Clyde did." I let out a snort as everyone managed to get a laugh out of that comment. "Just because you have a soul doesn't mean you're going to heaven. You of all people should know the human scum of the earth. I'm not saying killing humans is right, that's like a lamb telling a lion that it's fine to kill the rest of the flock," It was funny, in a dark way. But it was still funny. Though not the part about knowing the scum of the earth. Because I did. "but at the same time just because a human is more conscious of how animals in food farms are treated doesn't make them more likely to go to heaven, but it's a belief, a way of life. In your case it's a way of death, I guess." Carlisle was going through many of the talks he had with human vegetarians. It fit.
"So what, she thinks all vampires have souls then? And even if they hunt humans they have a shot at heaven as long as they aren't the vampire scum of the earth?" Rosalie was lost, practically everyone was lost on this. It was as some would say, 'food for though'.
"So it would seem." This even had Carlisle reeling. It had Jasper reeling. The flickers of hope were beginning to grow in the back of his mind. As they were in mine.
I felt Bella climb back on the bed. She straddled my torso and I did my very best not to groan. Regardless, Jasper laughed at the timing. Bella always took me off guard. She touched my hand and I let her take it from my face. She kissed my palm. It surprised me, her insanely warm lips on my ice cold hand. My eye's were open without an emotional filter. I had no way of knowing what she saw, but she leaned over and shook her hair sending her sent into me like an air pump. It was like a curtain around us, it was just us here. She was looking me in the eyes but had not lost coherency. Was I loosing my touch or was I just that out of it right now?
"Shall I tell you why you have a soul?" I hardly had time to understand the question. "You are my love, my only love. When you left, you left me broken," I winced. "It obviously wasn't physical, more than anything it was emotionally. But tell me… what human ends up like I did from just 'emotional' pain?" From Jasper we already knew she had unusually strong feelings for a human. From Carlisle, I knew the answer to that was few and far between. I was going to answer her but she kissed me effectively shutting me up. I love this woman.
"We both have souls, but by then it was too late, they had already started to become one, if they weren't already. You left us with half a soul each, always begging for the other half to come back to it. And then when it did, the only pain remaining were those from memories. It fused back into one so easily, as if there had never been a break. It has told us all along what our mind's have not been able to comprehend, what our hearts haven't been able to understand." There was a lump in my throat that I was fighting. It was close to the top. My brain was close to giving up the fight. I think Bella knew that… somehow.
"If you silence the battle between your heart and your mind," She brought her hand under the hair curtain to brush both of our hair from my forehead, "you can hear it, you can feel it. You just know. Close your eye's and listen to the silence." She brought her hand back to my cheek brushing her thumb over my cheek bone. It was once again a comfort I could fall into. I'm not sure if my family had silenced their own brains or if I had somehow managed to turn off the fuzz, but at the moment. I didn't care. I closed my eyes and listened. I refused my brains logic and my hearts desire. I felt and thought nothing. It was difficult but it was something that could be found. It was a pull. A pull to all of Bella, not just her heart, not just her blood, not just her mind, not just her body… it was a pull to all of her. I needed her, she needed me. I loved her, I would not survive without her, I already knew that. I could never do anything to her, I could never hurt my love. I opened my eye's to meet hers, though they seemed distant.
"And?" She asked slightly impatiently, I almost wondered how long I had been silent.
"This is right. We're right. I won't hurt you, because I can't." I refuse to hurt you. I want to give you everything… I want you to be happy, I've cause you so much pain, I've been such an idiot.
You have to start 'easing off the clutch' now. Or you'll talk yourself out of it. Prove to yourself that you wont hurt her. You won't I promise. I wouldn't let you, you know that.
"I know." She smiled. It was a bright smile but it twisted in apprehension, "You're not just saying that are you?" Just saying it… that would be lying. I won't lie to you, not any more love. I smiled at her mischievously and prayed that Alice was right. I flipped Bella over, our curtain gone.
"Not a chance." I ground my hips into hers eliciting a soft moan. I could do this. I wouldn't hurt her. I put all of my concentration into my body and hers. My kisses were probably lighter than normal and as I held her It wasn't tight. I could make it tight, so I just rubbed the sides of her torso. It may have been cowardly, but Bella was reacting… a lot, even with her cloths on. She stopped breathing with her mouth open letting out silent screams of pleasure making me remind her to breath. I didn't want her to pass out while I was trying to see If I could make her come. I wasn't at all sure how my mind would react if Bella were to have on any less clothing. It was already a haze. There was only one goal in mind, and it wasn't so much mind as body. My arousal grew as hers did. It was uncomfortable to say the least, but right now I was focusing on Bella. Giving her what she wants, what she needs. This was a very small baby step when it came to testing the 'clutch' and the 'brake' but this, if I could do this without hurting her. I couldn't deny us the practice that would lead us where we needed to be in order to go 'full throttle' on our honeymoon.
Bella, she was completely lost in her pleasure. It was a sight to see. Something I would want to see for the rest of eternity. I want it to be me that makes her like this. No man has seen what I will see, and I will see it. But no other man will. She's mine.
"Bella, you're mine." One last thrust and she screamed,
"Edward!" It was by no means quiet, neither of us were. But it didn't really care. I could feel her jeans soaking through to mine. I rolled off to the side as I watched her regain control of herself. In the state that I was in, I couldn't help but let my eye's wander from her face. Never before had I felt so much like a man. Her shirt was scuffed up a little bit showing her jean line against her skin. It was fascinating. I used my index finger to trace that line of skin just above her pants with feather light touches. If I moved her shirt up just a little bit higher I would see her navel. It was a tempting thought, but her heart was relaxed now. She let out a last sigh and opened her eye's to meet mine. They were distant, they were happy. After causing her so much pain I could cause this. We would work our way there. Only I looked forward to it now. There wasn't a bruise in sight.
"Such a tease, taking me to heaven and back. You'll be doing that more often, right?" If she was going for sexy she more than succeeded.
"Yes love, dear god yes." I sighed, smelling her beautiful hair. It was then that Alice's mental screaming broke through the haze that was lust.
Edward! You did it! I told you! She was more than smug. As was… my… mother. Reality came crashing down on me.
Edward… I'm so proud of him.
Bella You're Mine… nice line there bro.
Dude Bella's a screamer… haha.
More hormonal teenagers, wonderful.
I knew you could do it son.
It was slightly embarrassing to have the rest of my family thinking such, but I'd get used to it, and hopefully the novelty of a 'hormonal Edward' would wear off soon. I hoped.
I tuned them out as best I could and just relaxed in the presence of my Bella. I felt lighter now. So very much lighter it was ridiculous. I guess… it will take time getting used to the idea that vampire's have souls. But it'll sink in eventually. Especially with Bella around. She had this odd habit of Changing me in ways… in ways I could never imagine. For a vampire to change it takes something dramatic, and it is permanent. Bella had thrown so many switches in my supposedly frozen brain. She was a part of me, of that I had no doubt.
"What are you thinking?" I had to chuckle at her use of the phrase that I always used on her. I tried to describe what she was to me, I had tried before and failed to make it stick.
"When you first came to forks, my eye's were shut tight, so stuck in my own beliefs. I though that you had shown me how to open them, but you didn't. You told me how to, for how could I see with my eye's closed, how could I understand when I didn't have access to your mind. And when I refused to open them on my own, you did it for me, shoving the facts in my face. Like flicking a switch in my brain, you've done it to me so many times. I doubt you will ever cease to amaze me. How such a creature could love a mo…" She'd yell at me for that phrasing. "How could such a woman, have fallen in a love with a man like me?" She smiled her brilliant smile.
"You say I don't see myself clearly. You seem to have the same affliction. Let me lend you my eye's." What did she mean by that, "You're a handsome young man with green eyes aged topaz with time and blood. You're beautiful, you're old, but you're still a horny teenager." I chuckled at that last statement.
"I'm not the only horny teenager here Mrs. Soon-to-be Cullen." She laughed quietly as I flipped so that I was over her and she under me. I couldn't help but throw that in there, just to see how she would react.
"Don't you mean Mrs. Soon-to-be Masen-Cullen?" Masen-Cullen, why would she… "Cullen makes me a part of this family, Masen makes me yours." Her words may as well have been a slap in the face. I stared in shock for a moment. My reaction was instant, my control undeniably out the window. She wanted this, she wanted my last name, she wanted to be My wife. I crushed my lips to her, I struggled to keep it light but It was harder than normal, more urgent. She was everything… and she unfortunately still needed to breath. I kissed along her jaw line as she gasped for air. I used the time to settle down, to lessen the lust haze. Alice broke through once again… little pixie just loved to interrupt.
Isabella Marie Masen Cullen. The documents are already done and in hand. No worries. FYI, you have thirty seconds.
Thirty seconds? I checked what everyone was thinking. They were glad for me and all, but they wanted to see Bella. I wonder if she had any idea how they were going to react to what she had said. She obviously hadn't seemed to care when she said them.
Her mouth was still open her breathing not quite regular yet. But I had less than thirty seconds, I was damn well going to use them. I opened my mouth ever so slightly placing it above hers. I swallowed any venom in my mouth back and slipped my tongue into her mouth. She tasted delicious. My tongue stroked hers and she let out the most erotic sound I had ever heard. It was an incredibly throaty moan. Her eye's fluttered back I moved so that she could breath. She let out a whimper that made me want so much more than I could have right now. I had the slightest of feelings I was going to be living off her little noises for decades… centuries… and there is was. Acceptance…acceptance without guilt. Yes there would be guilt for what her change would do to Charlie and Renee. But we'd make sure they were taken care of. But when it came to Bella herself, I felt no guilt rise at the thought of changing her now. I smiled at her.
"I love you my Isabella." She smiled back.
"I love you my Edward."
3... 2... 1. Party's over love birds. Emmet was in a rather hurry to see us. I could almost feel the giddiness coming off of him. He banged loudly on the door making Bella jump. I rolled back on to my side and faced the door as Bella turned to face me in confusion. The door opened and I was smiling… probably like an idiot. Bella plastered an adorably innocent cheesy smile to her face and turned around. She moved and the smile faltered for a moment.
"I need a human moment first." Alice was crushing Bella to her with a pair of pants waiting. Bella wasn't breathing and I started growling. Alice rolled her eye's looking rather sheepish.
"Three minutes thirty two seconds, and just leave them in a corner, the pack rat will find them later." Her blush was exquisite. Jasper wasn't looking thankfully. I guess I was a bit of a pack rat. Okay I was definitely a pack rat, and I guess those would be more than applicable for the things to keep pile. I got off the bed and stood. I was looking at the floor not really knowing what to say.
"It hardly covers it, but I'm sorry for being so…"
"Thick headed?" Rosalie supplied.
"Yeah." I looked up. And the scene before me seemed out of place, as if it was one of those things that happened only once every few thousand years. I don't know why but it did. My eye's met each of my families… in apology for thinking they had no soul. It was pointless to a degree, as most of them believed the same and had just not expressed it. Then my eye's met Carlisle's. His brain surprisingly empty, holding nothing but my face compared to just hours ago. I was the same, and yet noticeably different. Soul's had always been the one place where Carlisle and I disagreed the most. At first it had been his lifestyle. I came back understanding… just as I came back understanding now.
"Father?" It wasn't that rare for us to call Esme mom when she was scolding us. But it was rare for us to feel the need to address Carlisle as 'Father'. This was one of those instances. Not a second later he was holding me as he had held me when I came back begging for forgiveness… Bella was right, he had treated me as the prodigal son that night. I returned the embrace. I didn't deserve it, I never had, didn't deserve this family, didn't deserve Bella… but if they were what I was given. I would sure as hell take them. This oddly felt like coming home again.
"Sorry." I whispered
"Nothing to forgive." And the outside world ceased to matter. We both settled in our own world, our own little island. Finding a way to agree on this, finally having found my conscience, my Bella, and it seemed like a wall was crumbling with us. The one thing that we didn't talk about was souls because we hated fighting, and we knew that was where it would go. It blocked our connection as first born and father. But it was disintegrating, and I felt that much closer to him.
I can never thank Bella enough for her words tonight… ever. I smiled knowing the feeling. Our quiet dry sobs had stopped and we pulled apart feeling refreshed in a way that can't be described in words.
I realized that Bella had been out for a while and everyone kept replaying her words and embrace. I had to smile at Jaspers face. Alice was excited at having it on camera. It was a strange thing that a human's acceptance would have such an effect on everyone. Rosalie most notably, I almost wondered if Bella had flicked a switch in her brain as well… heck she may as well have flicked everyone's switches. I glanced back at Jasper who was resting a hand on Bella's shoulder.
She holds a love so powerful it was causing her pain. She's fine, she just has vampire emotions in a human body. Interesting to say the least. I smiled at him then I looked at Bella smiling softly at Carlisle and I, our eye's met and I saw the world there. Carlisle and Bella's eye's met and he threw me a grin.
I've no way to repay her, but I can sure as well try. Jasper let go of her and Carlisle walked to her giving her a hug similar to the one he had just given me.
"Thank you my daughter. For everything you have done for my son, for my family." She started crying and I didn't know why. I looked to Jasper who still had that goofy grin on his face.
I can't wait until she's a Vampire, sans the newborn viciousness. I raised an eye brow at him. She's just so happy. I hoped to god that it would last. But Bella wasn't done shocking us, she was never done shocking us.
"Thank you father." Carlisle chuckled drawing her closer. I think it slammed into everyone at the same time… the implication of those words. When she had been talking about them, she had compared them to family relations… but hadn't actually, besides Alice, referred to anyone by an actual family member. Until now.
Bella is family. A daughter, a sister, a wife. This is how it would be in just a few short weeks. The family had figuratively fallen and was rising again as one. We had called this a family before rather than a coven. But now, more so than ever, that word was so much more than a label. It was an idea made real. Family.
Esme and I circled our arms around Carlisle and Bella clasping each others hands. The outer circle was much the same Jasper between Carlisle and I, Alice between Bella and I, Rose between Carlisle and Esme, and Emmet wrapping his arms around as many as possible standing behind Esme and Bella.
Everyone's thoughts were silent, everything was silent besides Bella's crying. No words were needed in this moment. Only our unbeating hearts spoke, and they spoke through Bella. It was a surreal feeling that held everyone there until Bella's tears subsided. Like nothing I had ever felt before. No one had felt that before. Jasper was reveling in that feeling, it was overpowering our confusion of what it was, but our confusion was there just the same. Regardless our mother knew, she knew what this was.
This is what it's like… Our family is finally whole.
Carlisle held Bella out judging her steadiness. I stood behind her regardless. She was very unsteady so I held her up. I was about to ask Alice to get some tissues when Rosalie popped up holding a box out to Bella. They shared a small smile, it was a truce, it was more acceptance.
Emmett's thoughts had been rather quiet through out all of this. Though I hadn't been… here, so to speak… when he hugged Bella. I had a fair Idea of what he said. But other than that, his mind had been fairly bewildered by all this. It's true he brought strength with him to this life, but It seems he also brought the ability to make a joke about anything and everything. With Bella blowing her nose, the chance to lighten the atmosphere of this insanely warm inferno, was too good to pass up.
"Jesus Bella, didn't know you were related to elephants." He chuckled lightly as Rose smacked the back of his head. We all dissolved into laughter.
Change was rare for vampires, but for so many to change at once. This human girl, soon to be one of us, had done so much. Knowing Bella she would never see the full extent to what she had done for the family. Esme noted more than anyone the changes in all of her children, in Carlisle even, especially in herself.
I'm going to go make a few more arrangements then I will be dragging her shopping. You have two hours and thirteen minutes. Don't waste them.
"You two have fun, but Bella, we are going shopping later." Bella smiled at Alice, it made her blink.
Damn, If she's got a thousand watt smile now… I raised an eye brow at Alice who was giving me a small smirk. Yes, I was doomed. I would do anything for her, and though she could capture me with a smile before, I had never seen her smile like that. If/When I was at the receiving end of such a smile, there would be no hope, I would do anything Bella asked.
Everyone began to leave our room each in their own thoughts, each adjusting to the new level of loyalty and love within the family. Esme was the last to leave, closing the door quietly behind her. Bella turned around to face me. Her eye's were still puffy and red, as was her nose, her hair was a little ruffled and her cloths were crinkled. Bella: the most beautiful woman on the face of the earth. She was mine, forever. Once again, the guilt of that thought did not come. Forever was looking wonderful, with her by my side, Always.
We had been through so much, and our happy ending wasn't that far away. Happy ending, not a tragedy. Sure we would have our disagreements, our family may get too close, we may want our own space now and then. But that was later, and this was now, and right now… Right now I was at the mercy of a merciless seductress.
Bella wrapped her arms around my neck as I wrapped mine around her waist drawing her closer. Her lips grazed mine lightly, and to my dismay left them and followed my jaw line back to my ear. And then I was reduced to a moaning idiot as her tongue slid against the back of my earlobe, and then she was sucking it, then her teeth were grazing it sending an electrical shot from my ear to my groin. I groaned as I dropped my cheek to rest lightly on her shoulders as I inhaled her sweet scent. A pain that had come to be associated with pleasure. The monster knew it would not win, it couldn't. Even knowing the taste of her blood, her death would mean my own and the monster didn't dare test my will.
I was on the verge of letting go, letting the man take over, to let myself enjoy what I had been forbidding us both from. Our wedding was in a few weeks, but from the accumulated knowledge I had gained unwittingly from the thoughts of others, I knew well enough that there was plenty of foreplay to keep us busy until then. Just before the rubber band that was my sanity snapped, Bella leaned foreword and whispered the last coherent words I would let her form until my sister forced her way back into our life.
"Ease off the clutch, leaving your soulless thoughts behind."
AN: There it is folks… more impossibly sappy family fluffy-ness. Hope the length didn't scare ya off. Thanks for reading ^_^ R and R.