AN ~ Hey ya'll. I know, I know… I fucking suck!

Big thanks go out to Jen Roxanne, Twilightsonefan Pattinson, LaMomo, Mina Rivera, Billi Cullen, Princesskriss & PixieKat7. These ladies have held my hand, encouraged me and kept bugging me about updating.

Enjoy!

Previously...

As the lights dimmed and the orchestra located in the pit below the stage started to play their opening number, Lizzy started giggling. Edward grinned as he watched Lizzy bounce on Emmett's knee to the music. Emmett had a hold of Lizzy's hands and was waving them around as if she was conducting the orchestra.

Edward nudged Bella and pointed towards the pair. Bella's face lit with a smile as she took in the adorable view.

"He's going to be an amazing father," she commented as she continued to watch.

"Yeah, Beautiful, he is."

Second Chances Never Looked So Good ~ Chapter 13

He looked so handsome, peaceful and sick. Bella smoothed a finger over Edward's furrowed brow. Even while he slept, she could tell that he felt like crap. He'd woken up in the middle of the night sneezing, his nose was now red and his mouth open so he could breath. Thankfully, Bella had the sense to grab some nighttime cold medicine from under the bathroom sink around 3am and Edward had been passed out since.

He needed his rest. He'd had a rough few months, they all had, but Edward had taken the brunt of it. He'd endured months of meetings with lawyers before a judge finally decided the fate of one little girl. His little girl. The same little girl who had permanently carved a place in Bella's heart.

Bella snuggled her body closer to Edward's. She didn't care if she caught his cold, all she wanted was to feel his skin against hers. The closer she moved her body to his, the more at peace she felt. She squeaked in surprise when Edward's arm wound around her waist, pulling her onto her back and plunking his head onto her chest, using her boob as a pillow. She laughed softly and threaded her fingers through his bronze locks. She shivered in delight, feeling his warm breath ghost across her bare stomach.

Bella lay there a while longer as her mind reeled over the past few months. They were currently in celebration mode. They'd survived their first family Christmas. Lizzy had turned two in early January, and the issue of Lizzy's mom, Lauren and her boyfriend Riley had been dealt with.

After a thorough investigation and some interesting surveillance footage that the restaurant had on file, it was found out that Riley had been the one to tamper with Bella's truck. He'd jimmied open the door, popped the hood and dumped a quart of motor oil in her brake line reservoir. Bella mused that he must have thought he was crafty, because from what she'd learned, it took a bit of driving before the oil permeated the brake lines and destroyed them.

Riley had been brought in for questioning and had let it slip that Lauren had asked him to 'take care of Bella'. After much deliberation, Riley was charged with attempted murder and Lauren with conspiracy to commit murder. Both were currently incarcerated and awaiting trial. Bella shuddered at the term 'murder', even though she'd been hearing it for months, it still made her skin crawl.

It was easy after that for Edward to gain full custody of Lizzy, the family court judge even went so far as to terminate Lauren's parental rights. A sigh of relief was audible throughout the courtroom when that decision was made final. Lizzy would no longer be in danger. Edward vowed that he'd make sure that, growing up Lizzy would know about her biological mother and he'd leave it up to her whether or not she wanted a relationship with her. For now, all they could do was live life one day at a time.

Bella gently shifted out of Edward's hold and pulled the covers around him as she got out of bed. It was early morning and she knew the horses needed to be fed; instead of waking Edward, she decided to go out to the barn and help Joe with the chore. Thankfully, Lizzy was spending the week with both sets of grandparents. They'd arrived a few days prior, packed up the car and all headed towards the beach.

After pulling on a well-worn in pair of Wranglers, a flannel top and boots, Bella grabbed a cup of coffee and headed towards the barn. It was mid-April so the breeze was a bit chilly, but Bella didn't feel it. She felt as she had that first day on Bella Vista Ranch, she felt at peace. The whole place agreed with her, soothed her soul and wrapped her in warmth. Stepping into the barn, she chuckled at her own silliness.

"Morning Joe," Bella sang out cheerfully when she spotted him crouching next to a hay bale.

The old man startled a bit and turned to look at her, a sly grin in place. "Howdy Miss Bella. Where be Edward?"

Her smile fell a bit as she remembered how sick he'd been throughout the night. "Turns out he's got a nasty cold, so I left him to sleep and thought I'd come out and help you this morning."

"Well, lucky me."

"I know right?" Bella winked and started to give some grain to each horse.

As she neared New Moon's stall she stopped and admired how far the mare had come along. She was now healthy and no longer feared other animals or humans. Bella took pride in knowing that she'd helped Edward bring life back into New Moon.

"Hey there, girl," Bella cooed reaching her hand through the gate and gently sweeping her fingers along the horse's muzzle. The horse nickered and leaned her head against Bella's hand. "Maybe we can try getting a saddle on you this week, what do you think about that?" she asked.

Almost as if in understanding, the mare took a step back, causing Bella to sigh. Slowly but surely, with the help of Edward and Joe, Bella had been able to reintroduce items such as a halter and blanket to New Moon. They still didn't know her exact history, nor whether she'd been at the hand of any physical abuse, they were taking the training process nice and slow.

"Beautiful."

Bella jumped when she heard Edward's raspy voice behind her, she twirled and gazed at her sick man who sported a red nose and wrapped in a blanket. He slowly shuffled his way to her side.

Bella tried to put on her stern face, even though her heart lifted every time he was around. "Edward, what the hell are you doing out here? Get your ass back in bed, Cowboy." She placed her hands along her hips, tapped her foot and cocked an eyebrow.

Edward, oblivious to her so-called bitch brow, kept shuffling towards her. "Horses need food."

Bella sighed. "And what does it look like Joe and I are doing? You're sick, go back to bed."

"Don't wanna," Edward whined.

"Good grief," Bella muttered under her breath, looping an arm around his waist and turning him back towards the house. "Sorry, Joe," she called out when she saw a fleck of soiled hay land in the aisle outside a stall. "I've got to take sicky here back to the house."

Joe chuckled, leaning against his pitch fork. "No worries, darlin'. Just make sure ya' keep him there."

The walk back to the house was slow; Bella kept her arm wrapped around Edward. She shivered as a gust of cold wind whipped around them. Edward broke his hold of her and wrapped the blanket around Bella as well. She basked in the warmth radiating off him as well as the blanket.

"Thanks cowboy," she said softly, snuggling against his side.

~*~SCNLSG*~*SCNLSG~*~

Bella gazed out the bank of windows that lined the west living room wall; the sun was setting and the evening was turning out to be a gorgeous spring twilight. The trees gently swayed in the breeze.

She still couldn't believe her luck and how drastically her life had changed in the past six months. She had fallen in love with a cowboy and he loved her back. The whole thing still astonished and overwhelmed her at times, especially when she thought about the depth of her feelings, not only towards Edward, but Lizzy as well.

Lizzy. She was the best two-year-old out there in Bella's opinion, and she was utterly in love with that little girl. She'd become Lizzy's mother figure and couldn't be happier about it. She definitely had Bella wrapped around her little finger. The two girls had made it a routine to spend Saturday afternoons in the kitchen. Lizzy would help Bella make cookies and bread and something for dinner. Lizzy especially loved that both her and Bella had matching aprons.

Edward woke up feeling groggy. He rolled over in bed and felt around for Bella, but was saddened when he realized he was in bed alone. He then remembered it was because he was sick and sleeping in the middle of the day. He tried to close his mouth and instantly felt like he was suffocating; his nose was so clogged up. He hated being sick, it made him feel weak and helpless. He dragged himself out of bed and decided to find his girl. He knew she'd be able to help him feel better.

He slowly made his way down the stairs, his eyes scanned the living room and stopped on his beautiful Bella who was leaning against the windowsill, gazing outside.

"Hey," he rasped.

Bella startled and turned around to see Edward at the base of the stairs. She hadn't heard him come down.

"Hi baby. Did you have a good nap?" she asked, making her way towards him, concern lacing her features

He nodded. "I hate being sick," he complained, wrapping his arms around her waist. He brought her down to sit on the sofa, peppering her forehead and cheeks with kisses, and making her giggle.

"I know, but the more rest you get, the faster you'll get better." Bella caressed her fingers along his stubble-covered chin. "You're so beautiful."

Edward looked into her eyes and brought his forehead to meet hers. "I love you so much, you know that right?"

"Trust me, Cowboy, I know." Bella ghosted her lips against his, her fingers lightly scratching his scalp.

"Christ," Edward growled, angling his head to deepen their kiss. He tightly wrapped his arms around the love of his life and pulled her into his lap. His achingly hard cock was now pressed against Bella's thigh.

Bella nipped at his ear and clutched fists full of his bronze locks as he ravaged her neck; she shivered at the intensity of pleasure from their simple touch.

"Baby…" Edward whispered right before sneezing into her neck. Bella pulled away and scrunched up her face in mock disgust. Edward sneezed again.

"Oh, my poor Cowboy," she soothed as he continued to sneeze. "Maybe we should pick this up another time?"

Edward only nodded as he sank back onto the couch, pulling Bella with him. "Sorry," he murmured into her hair.

"Let's just say it's a good thing I love you, otherwise I'd be really disgusted right now." She laughed. "How about I get you some soup? I made some homemade chicken noodle soup this morning and it's been simmering all afternoon."

Edward ran his hands along her sides. "What did I ever do to deserve you?" he asked seriously.

"Simple." Bella cupped his face in her palms. "You were you. That's all I'll ever need and want." She lightly kissed his lips before standing to get them some dinner.

~*~SCNLSG*~*SCNLSG~*~

"So, when are you going to make an honest woman of my sister?" Emmett asked as he and Edward settled into a booth at a local pub to enjoy some 'man' time as Bella called it.

Edward who was just bringing a chilled pilsner full of beer up to his mouth, stopped midway, taking in Emmett's question. He knew Emmett was going to grill him about marrying Bella. He knew because every time they got together, he got grilled, only this time Edward was prepared.

He placed his beer on the table, reached into his pocket and produced a black jeweler's box. Setting it on the table, he pushed it towards Em.

"It's about damn time," Emmett bellowed, grabbing the box and popping the lid. Nestled inside the black velvet was a half-carat princess cut diamond set in a square frame, and surrounded by additional diamonds on a split shank platinum band. Emmett whistled as he continued to eye the sparkly piece. "Not bad Edward, not bad at all."

Edward sank back into the booth in relief. He hadn't realized he was counting on Emmett's approval. He'd already secured Renee's approval, he'd gotten that last time she and Gram's had come down to the ranch for a visit.

"Thanks, Emmett. It really means a lot to me that you support our being together."

Emmett closed the box carefully and slid it back to Edward. "Just remember," he looked Edward square in the eye. "You fuck up and I will kill you."

Edward saw the twinkle in the bigger man's eyes and knew the threat was real, but he also knew he'd never do anything intentionally to fuck things up. He took a sip of his beer. "So, I'm thinking of taking Bella to the annual tulip festival down in Woodburn next month and asking her while surrounded by her favorite flowers."

Emmett stayed silent for a moment and Edward started frantically thinking that his proposal was stupid. "I can always come up with something different if you think that's too lame. I just want to make it special for her. She and Lizzy are my whole life and I want my proposal to be something she'll always remember."

"Edward, why don't you calm the hell down?" Emmett held his hand up for the waitress and ordered another round of beers and a double plate of nachos. "It's the perfect idea for my sister. You couldn't have nailed it more if you tried."

Edward sighed in relief. "Thank God for that. I wasn't sure if I could come up with something else."

"It's a great idea and she's going to love it, not to mention say yes."

Edward's eyes lit at that. "You really think she'll say yes? I mean, we've only been together for about 6 months now, I know that's not a long time, but I feel like we've been together for a lifetime already. I've also had my lawyer draw up the paperwork, so that Bella can officially adopt Lizzy."

Emmett sat back stunned for a moment before he chuckled. "My sister has never been happier and any idiot out there could tell from a mile away how much she loves you and your daughter. I'm afraid you're stuck with her forever."

"That's what I'm hoping."

As the men continued to enjoy their beers and nachos Edward was able to easily convince Emmett to have Lizzy over for a sleepover the night before Edward planned on proposing. Edward was sure he could easily get his parents, Bella's mom and grandmother to be there for the proposal. He wanted this important moment in life to be celebrated with the entire family; especially since they'd all grown so close the past few months.

Edward arrived home a short while later. He felt a spring in his step, realizing that his dream of being with his love, his Bella, for the rest of their lives was one step closer to being a reality. He knew that Bella would stay with him whether he asked her to marry him or not, but he liked the idea of being able to call her Mrs. Cullen and he loved that he'd one day soon be able to call her his wife.

As he made his way to the front door he was saddened that Lizzy wouldn't be there until the grandparents brought her home from the beach the following day, but he was excited to have another night alone with his love. He whistled a happy tune as he pulled open the back door, toed off his boots and hung his jacket on the peg, before making his way to the kitchen. He could hear country music set low and he could smell the wondrous smells of Bella's cooking.

Rounding the corner to the kitchen, he stopped dead in his tracks and growled under his breath as he felt his cock instantly harden. Bella was standing at the stove, stirring a pot, wearing nothing but a pair of black lacy cheeky panties, a black and white polka dot apron and red stiletto heels.

Holy hell, she was trying to kill him with her sexiness. He wasn't sure if she knew he was behind her, so he continued to watch her, his eyes focusing on the way her lean and beautiful back moved as she reached a pot at the back of the stove. She wasn't wearing a bra; the only thing covering her beautiful breasts from the heat of the flame was the barely there apron.

He realized he couldn't continue to stand there ogling her, so he slowly and quietly stalked towards her. "You do realize that once you start school on Monday, they will require you to wear more than an apron, panties and heels in the kitchen, right?"

Bella jumped and splashed some spaghetti sauce on her bare thigh. "Oh ow, shit!" she yelled, frantically trying to wipe the sauce off her leg. "Fuck, it's hot!"

Edward crouched down in front of Bella and gently dabbed at the red spot on her leg. He knew her skin had to be burning so he pressed his lips to the spot, kissed it then laved his tongue on it.

"I'm sorry for scaring you, Beautiful," Edward said as he kissed the spot again, his hands ghosting up the backs of her thighs.

Bella moaned at Edward's gentle treatment. He always treated her as if she was a goddess who needed to be worshiped. She gasped as his hands slid up the bottom of her apron and he nuzzled her moist, hot center. Her fingers gripped his hair as she held him to her.

"Oh fuck!" Bella groaned as Edward pushed her panties to the side and slid two fingers inside her, his tongue paying close attention to her bundle of nerves.

"You taste so good, Beautiful!" Edward continued his exploration; he could feel how close she was to climaxing so he doubled his efforts. As soon as he felt her walls tighten and flutter around his fingers he gently bit down on her clit and she screamed in ecstasy.

Bella's chest heaved as she tried to calm herself from her Edward induced high. Her legs felt like jelly and she was thankful Edward still had a grip on her thighs. She looked down at her handsome cowboy and her heart soared. She gently tugged on his hair and he stood to his full height, towering over her slight frame. She wrapped her arms around his neck and pulled his mouth to hers. Their tongues tangled, she could taste beer, herself and Edward. She always loved the taste of Edward.

Edward's hands ghosted down Bella's bare back to her scantily covered ass. "Not that I mind in the least, but can I ask why you're cooking spaghetti in nothing but heels, an apron and panties?"

Bella blushed slightly as she felt Edward's hands slip underneath her panties so his hands could grasp her bare ass. She bucked her hips against his and could feel her nipples harden under the apron.

"I wanted to surprise you."

"Oh, you've certainly done that. What do you say we turn off the stove and you let me have my way with you right here on the kitchen counter?"

Bella moaned deeply. She twisted and turned off both burners before she pushed back on Edward's chest, leading him towards the clear counter space on the other side of the kitchen. Edward quickly spun them around so that Bella's back was pushed up against the front of the refrigerator. She shivered as her overheated skin met the cool stainless steel.

Her hands moved between them as she quickly unbuttoned his work shirt and pulled it off him before dropping it to the floor. "You're so damn sexy," she growled, as her fingers gently traced over the hard planes of his chest. She leaned in close and took one of his nipples into her mouth. She sucked and lightly bit it until she felt Edward tremble against her.

"Let's get you out of these clothes." Bella quickly unbuttoned Edward's Wranglers and impatiently pushed them down his lean hips. His obvious arousal created a rather large tent in his boxer briefs.

Bella felt Edward's fingers untie the strings around her neck and felt her apron fall to her waist. He groaned as his hands cupped her full, heavy breasts in his hands. "So perfect," he murmured as he paid equal attention to both.

"Edward, please!" Bella pleaded, she felt that she was going insane with all his teasing. She yanked his boxer briefs down his thighs and grasped his hard cock in her hand, as she wrapped a leg around his waist. "Now," she demanded more forcefully.

She heard a rip and realized that her favorite pair of cheeky panties were now in shreds on the kitchen tiles. Oh, well. She gyrated her hips against Edward's and felt the tip of his cock slip against where she needed him most. She angled her hips a little more and felt him begin to slide into her. He thrust his hips forward and was sheathed inside her, pelvis to pelvis.

Bella screamed out in pleasure, she always felt so full when he was inside her.

"Fuck beautiful, so tight… perfect… love…" he rambled as he continued to pump in and out of her heavenly heat. His hands gripped her hips to keep her steady and his mouth marked her neck. He knew she'd be pissed about the marking, but he couldn't bring it in himself to care. With her starting school in a few days, he wanted to make sure that every little punk bastards there would know she was spoken for.

He wrapped his hands around her and cupped her ass, boosting her up the fridge, her legs automatically wound around him, her arms around his shoulders as she held on for a ride of a lifetime.

He could feel she was getting close; hell, he was close to bursting himself. He quickened his relentless pace and continued to pound into her. Her screams, moans and groans spurring him on.

"Cum for me Edward, cum with me," she breathed into his ear before she bit the edge of his jaw. He immediately felt himself lose control and spill into her. He shouted her name as he felt her tight, hot wet walls clamp down around him, milking him for all he was worth.

He slumped against her; they slowly slide down the refrigerator until they were a heap on the floor.

"Thanks for the ride, Cowboy," Bella purred as she brushed her lips against his.

"Anytime Ma'am," he drawled with a southern accent, dipping down the corner of his imaginary Stetson.

AN ~ I hope you all liked the lemony goodness (it's the first lemon I've written completely by myself! I'm also hoping you love that Edward is planning to propose to his beautiful Bella as much as I am! I have a feeling this story has about one more chapter and an epilogue. I could say it'd have more, but who the fuck am I kidding, I keep hitting roadblocks left and right with this storyline, so I believe it's best to put it to bed.

Oh and for those who are interested, here's the link to the engagement ring Edward bought for Bella! Yeah! http:/www(dot)zales(dot)com/product/index(dot)jsp?productId=4421774&fbc=0

I've signed up for the fifth round of The Twilight Twenty-Five, so I'm hoping that writing all 25 of those oneshots/drabbles will help get me back into the writing mood. I have so many half written stories that I'd love to finish and share with you all.

Anyway… thanks everyone for your continued support and for loving my story, even when I take seven months to update!

Love always,

*Eifeltwr*