A/N: So after years and years and years we have finally reached the end! (Not a moment too soon LOL). First I would like to thank Sassy from the bottom of my heart for not only taking on the enormous task of editing this absolute nightmare of a story but for being the incredibly kind and sweet person she is. A true angel! I feel privileged to call you friend.
I would also like to take a moment to thank Greenaway. I know things didn't end like we planned but I thank you for the time and effort you put into this story and I sincerely wish you all the very best for the future.
To those of you I have met and talk to via my facebook page it's been awesome...
To the people who took the time to review I thank you so very much. It's the only credit we get as writers and it's nice to be acknowledged especially considering the amount of time that goes into writing a novel length book. (or in this case several novels). I would also like to thank those of you who have stuck by this story, at times its felt like it was never going to end!
Unfortunately this is not the original ending that was planned for this story and I apologize for that. In this chapter both Bella and Edward's points of view are written solely by me, cinnamon twist.
I wanted to let you all know at this stage I have no plans to write anymore fan fiction. I have several new original projects on the go including collaborating on a story with my friend Penny Lane and I just don't have time to continue with fan fiction. So thank you to all of you for reading my work and wish you all peace, joy and happiness in your lives...Cinnamon :) xx...
Disclaimer: S. Meyer owns twilight and its characters, Cinnamon Twist & Greenaway co own an angel at my table. Any music used is the property of the rightful owners no copy right intended.
The True Meaning of Happiness
I walked out of the bathroom, followed by the fragrant steam from the shower, expecting to find Edward waiting for me; instead I found a note on the bed address to Mrs Cullen in Edward's elegant script.
The note was sitting atop a long white strapless chiffon gown, and the diamond butterfly necklace Edward had given me on our wedding day, I fingered the delicate gold and diamond chain curiously; I hadn't realized Edward wanted to us dress up for dinner tonight.
We had arrived on Eden a couple of hours ago, our excuse was to get the premises in order and get prepared for our family and friends who would be arriving on the Island tomorrow with our children for a weeklong celebration for Apple and Louis' fifth birthday. But Edward and I had really wanted to take the opportunity to spend a night alone together; we had not had one of those in the months in which we had been back together.
I picked up the note, my curiosity piqued.
I'm out by the lagoon, I'll see you on the beach.
Don't take too long Mrs Cullen,
I miss you.
I discarded the note and quickly towel dried my hair. I attempted to put the brush through the snarl of curls but gave up after less than a minute; I would deal with the knots tomorrow. The dress was gorgeous; the soft material felt like clouds yet flowed like water over my body and it fit like it had been made especially for me. Alice maybe? Most definitely! I could see her signature style now that I really studied myself in the mirror.
Since we were on the Island and more so because Alice wasn't here to argue; I decided to go to dinner in bare foot, the dress was long enough to cover all but the tips of my toes. I added the diamond butterfly necklace, checked myself in the mirror; my hair was a mass of unruly curls but I could do nothing about that so I deemed myself presentable.
Edward's note had said he would be out by the lagoon; I hurried out the door eager to be back in his embrace. We had spent no time apart in the months we had been back together, being away from him now made me anxious. Not because I didn't trust him to be away from me, I trusted Edward, but because I missed him to.
"Bella..." The easily recognisable voice of Charjay called out from behind me. I stopped and turned smiling at my employee. Charjay was a lovely Tahitian girl of eighteen who worked here on the weekends with her Mother Sanjay.
"Hi Charjay," I said smiling in response to the bright smile she wore.
"You look really pretty Bella," She complimented me shyly.
"Thanks; so do you," I replied just as bashfully. I could feel the blood beginning to pool beneath my cheeks, staining them a light crimson.
"I made something for you," she said holding out a wreath of cream frangipanis, the delicate flowers were my favourites on the island. Their sweet perfume was intoxicating.
"Thank you so much," I was a little taken aback and a little overwhelmed that she took the time to make me something. She gently placed the wreath atop my head like a crown, fussing over it for a moment as she slid it into place. My cheeks burned hotter as my embarrassment deepened.
"You're welcome," she said brightly as she thrust a small bouquet of the same fragrant cream flowers into my hands. She kissed my cheek swiftly and wished me a pleasant evening before turning around and bounding off down the path.
I hurried off the opposite direction, eager to find Edward. I was slightly bewildered by the odd exchange with Charjay but I was touched by her thoughtful handmade gift.
The small patch of jungle gave-way after a moment, I pushed past the last of the ferns overhanging the path and stopped abruptly as Edward appeared in my line of sight, he was dressed in a loose fitting white linen shirt; his linen pants were white as well. Like mine his feet were bare.
He was glorious.
My heart stuttered then took off in a sprint; it crashed almost violently against my ribs in a vain attempt to beat out of my chest. I was momentarily distracted by the flowery canopy he stood beneath but then he smiled my favourite smile and his attire, the flower canopy, the magnificent purple gold sunset, the turquoise water of the lagoon became inconsequential. All I saw was my Edward.
I let him fill my vision completely and was stunned by his beauty.
So much had changed, not just in our relationship, but as people; we were different. I was different but of course the biggest change belonged to the beautiful bronzed haired man I once more called my husband.
The transformation he had been through was truly astounding.
In the months in which we had been back together I saw how deep those changes went. Physically Edward was more like the man I married, he had put on weight, his muscles were more defined now and his face wasn't as gaunt. His skin had lost the sallow tone; his complexion was more like it used to be. His cheeks had more colour in them and his green eyes were more animated now they had regained some of their sparkle. Although he was still sick his Doctor was thrilled with his progress, he had assured Edward that if he continued to follow his vegetarian diet and he didn't get too stressed then in time he would recover his quality of life, though his liver would never fully recover.
The physical changes however paled in comparison to the psychological ones. The manic energy that used to possess Edward had completely gone; he was so much more relaxed and considerably more even tempered now. He was so caring and thoughtful, he never took anything for granted nor did he impose his will on me, and nothing seemed to faze him now.
He was content.
At first it had been a struggle for me to live with Edward again. Of course trust was the biggest issue for me, it had been hard for me to let go of the mindset the defence mechanism that had me holding back, that had me waiting for the bubble to burst. I knew it was unfair to Edward to have such a lack of faith in him but I also knew that as a recovering alcoholic he could relapse at any time without any warning. It would have been foolish if I let myself get complacent.
Edward completely understood my reservations and he would not allow me to feel guilty. He constantly reminded me that my trust was something he had to earn back. His patience was endless; it was one of the biggest changes in him.
As the weeks had turned to months I had begun to relax, every morning when I woke in his arms I would tell myself that he would never hurt me again, I knew he would never leave, never forsake me again. I made myself believe it and slowly the trust began to return.
Apple had found it even harder than I had. I felt so bad for her; it had to be so confusing. She was absolutely ecstatic to have her father back in her life. All traces of sadness had been wiped away with the return of Edward and it was almost like my daughter had been returned. But she suffered the same trust issues as I did. Whilst she wasn't sad anymore she was more possessive of Edward than she had ever been.
She never let him out of her sight, especially in those first few months; she was permanently glued to his side. The times he did manage to slip away from her were always met with the same reaction. As soon as she realized he was not in the room her eyes would widen in fear as she called out for him. She would run from room to room screaming his name, ignoring me when I tried to explain he had just gone to see Aro or that he was in the shower, her little body would shake with her grief and mine would shake with my grief for her.
The moment Edward was back in her sight she would cling to him as she calmed herself down. She would repeat over and over, "You were gone. You not leave me again aye Dad? I can make you better. You not allowed to leave."
Apple's reaction hurt Edward and I both, for different reasons, he felt intense guilt at how much his leaving had hurt his eldest daughter. My hurt stemmed from the fact Apple still blamed me for Edward's absence in her life. Now that he was home she would not allow me to do anything for her, if she needed help it was Edward she turned to. I tried not to let it get me, I knew she was too young to understand but it still left a bitter taste in the back of my throat.
Over time things had gotten better, Edward could now leave the room without her having a complete meltdown, but it was a different story when he left the house without her.
Louis, so different from Apple in most ways, had also found it difficult not to panic when Edward wasn't around. Only instead of running through the house in a panicked frenzy as his sister did, he would come to straight to me and ask quietly where his Daddy had gone. He would listen to my explanation thoughtfully and when I promised him his dad would be back he would accept it without question.
Matisse and Noah had no issues if Edward left the room, their lives, unlike that of their elder siblings, bore no scars of their parent's horrendous mistakes...
But things were better now for all of us, the fact we were here without Apple was testament to that. She had been terrified when we had told her we were flying to Eden a day earlier than her and her siblings, I understood her fear that her father would not return. When I had tucked her into her bed that night I had explained that not only would her father never leave her again but that I was going to be with him. I had promised her I would make sure he did not get sick again, Apple was petrified that if she was away from her Daddy he would get sick, she believed in her precious heart that she was the only one that could keep him well.
She was right in a way, the bond she shared with Edward had grown ever stronger, he was the centre of her universe and her devotion to him had helped to keep him well. For Edward, Apple, and her siblings were the centre of his universe. He loved all of his kids equally but it was with Apple that he had the strongest bond; they were just two peas in a pod...
I took another protracted moment to gaze at Edward, allowing all the love I felt for him flow unimpeded through my veins. I had not thought it possible but I loved him now more than I ever had. My lips curved up into a smile as I savoured the sight before me; there weren't words to adequately describe how magnificent he truly was. In my heart I knew there would never be anyone for me but Edward, I knew I could survive without him but if he wasn't in my life I would have found my universe a bleak and lonely place. We were just two halves of a whole.
My feet began to move without conscious thought, my body yearned to be in his arms, my heart and soul longed to be in his presence. It felt like it took forever to get to his side but finally I was there.
"Bella," He breathed my name with a veneration that sent another wave of love more powerful than any before it washing over me, it sunk beneath my flesh and bone to my very soul. Edward wrapped his arm around my waist pulling me into his side and I marvelled at how I still fitted perfectly into his side. We were like two corresponding pieces of a puzzle.
Edward caught my gaze and I was instantly lost in his deep emerald eyes, I was mesmerised, enchanted. They continued to pull me in deeper, further than I had ever been in their seamlessly endless depths.
I had seen as far as his soul but suddenly I saw more than that, this time I saw Edward as a whole, flesh, bone and his soul. I saw every miniscule thread that made up the man, the complete and byzantine web of connections that fused the physical and the spiritual together.
**The web expanded, it was magical; I could see that every delicate silver thread was connected to points, like stars, sparks of brilliant silver light. Within the first bright light I could see Carlisle, Esme, and Aro, the faces of his parents. I followed the labyrinth of connections, fascinated, to the next bright spot, there resided his brothers and my sisters, my parents and Jacob were there to.
The tiny silver threads interwove to the next of the slivery stars, it was the faces of Irina, Demetri, Oliver, Felix and Kate that swirled there, the friends that he considered his family.
As my incredulous eyes moved toward the centre of the intricate maze the colour of threads changed, no longer sparkling silver they had turned a deep rich gold and became more complex. There were hundreds of thousands maybe millions of the sparkling gold threads interlacing as they connected to the brightest light in the very centre, the heart, of the web.
This light was a brilliant vivid gold that shone brighter than the sun. Shimmering within its golden radiance were my face and Edward's and the faces of our children. There was even the tiny face of an angelic infant, a child we had never gotten to meet but loved all the same. Each of our faces glowed luminous and beautiful in the intense golden light.
My fascination turned to awe, I could see every one of those golden threads, though they looked as delicate as silk, were in fact stronger than steel. I could see that those threads could never be broken.
Somewhere in the back of my stunned mind I could feel the last lingering traces of fear melt away. I was left with nothing but pure love and joy.
My awe deepened, this was by far the most profound moment of my life. I didn't want to blink; I didn't want to move a fraction. If I could I would stay suspended in this moment forever, I could spend eternity watching the intricate workings of Edward's brilliant soul.
I tried to starve off blinking but I was unable, as my eyelids closed for the briefest part of a second the web disappeared and I could feel myself being pulled back to the present, it was Edward's angel face that filled my vision now.
"I love you Edward," I whispered still in complete awe of him. I reached up to stroke his cheek; I wanted to touch him; to check that he was real.
"I love you to Bella, so much..." He murmured, a hint of the former velvety nuance in his voice.
Edward took my hand, removing it from his cheek; he kissed my fingertips before sliding a diamond band onto my finger. It moulded perfectly around my engagement ring and it matched my platinum and diamond wedding ring. An eternity ring: the last of the set that would adorn my finger for the rest of my life.
Everything suddenly clicked into place, the white dress, the wreath and posy of flowers, the flowery canopy under which we stood; the diamond butterfly necklace and the ring. Edward was renewing the vows, the promises, he had made to me the day we became husband and wife.
"...I love you and I swear to you that I always will." He murmured, "I will never forsake you; I will never leave you or hurt you ever again. I will never ask you for more than you want to give." He promised, "I vow to you Bella you can trust me. I will spend the rest of forever being the best husband and father I can be. I will fight for our happy ever after my only love."
Edward's voice was as soft as velvet and saturated with sincerity. Even if I had not just seen the proof of his commitment to me and our children in his soul; the sincerity that soaked his voice would have convinced me.
For the first time in a long time there was the complete absence of fear, for the first time in what felt like forever I contained nothing but a deep blissful joy, and it consumed me whole.
After the profound and life altering moment I had just experienced it occurred to me that Edward didn't need to fight to give me my happy ever after, he already had fought for it, he had already given it to me. He had found his way back to himself, found his way back to me. We were together and in love, we had our children and our family and friends, his health was improving and we had everything going for us. We had the world at our feet. What more could we possibly need?
Edward and I had everything, all the ingredients for our happy ever after.
He raised our entwined hands to his face, he pressed his lips to the rings, sealing the promises he had just given me with a kiss.
Again I was awed.
Edward let go of my hand and took my face between his soft warm palms, his deep green eyes burned brightly brighter than I had ever seen them, the love and happiness swirled and danced in the flame. I was stunned again.
"Forever," he vowed as he leaned forward to kiss me, his lips soft yet unyielding as they moved against mine. My arms laced around his neck and I kissed him deeply, his hands dropped from my face to wrap tightly around me; he pulled my body flush with his.
As it was with every time we touched, desire ignited into an inferno in the pit of my stomach and spread like lightning through my body consuming me whole. Although every fibre of my being felt like a live wire with the current that emanated from deep within Edward and flowed through me, it was love that flavoured the kiss.
I don't know for how long we shared the kiss, it could have been seconds, minutes, hours. It could have been several blissful days, time seemed to have stopped ticking, just as my heart had stopped beating. Both kicked back in after a moment.
With the restarting of my heart came with it some clarity the significance of the moment. "Thank you Edward," I whispered before kissing him deeply once more...
...The blissful joy I felt was made all the more so with being back on Eden Island. I had been so appalled when Edward had first bought it for me, an extravagant waste of money I had always thought. Yet being back here with him now I could feel nothing but gratitude, in terms of what this place had given me, had given us; had been priceless.
This tiny Island had been a slice of heaven, a place of magic and happiness and healing. It had sheltered us through dark times and it was the place Edward and I had created some of the best and happiest memories I had. The times we spent here were always relaxed and filled with happiness.
Eden Island had always brought out the best in my Edward. He had always been his most relaxed here. This was where he shed all of his fears and inhibitions; it was where the glimpses I used to get of the man I always knew he could be came out to shine their brightest. It was evident in what just transpired between us that it still retained that magic over him...
...He led me down onto the beach and I gasped quietly, on the shore was a table set for two, the sunset backdrop was breathtaking, it stained the sky and water a deep peachy orange. I was instantly transported back to the last time we had dined on this beach, my mind ran over every tiny detail I remembered of what had transpired that night, the soft netted gazebo and the smell of frangipanis, the candles, and the daybed. The moonlit piano sonata: his velvety smooth voice as he serenaded me. Every single kiss, every single touch we had shared.
It had been the most magical night of my life.
"Edward," I whispered. My eyes filled with tears as I was once again filled with awe for my beautiful husband.
"I know sweetheart. I remember..."
A single tear slid down my cheek, a tear of happiness, after all Edward had been through he had not forgotten...
...Edward did not take his eye off my face as indulged my love of seafood, I popped another of the delectable king prawns into my mouth with a satisfied moan. I loved Eden Island as much for its abundant seafood as I did it for its magic. I returned Edward's gaze knowing that the love and happiness I saw in his deep emerald eyes was mirrored in my own.
I slid another prawn into my mouth, noting that whilst I was on my second plateful Edward's own plate remained largely untouched, he seemed more content to watch me eat. I finished the last of my dinner finally feeling like I had had my fill of the succulent delicacies. I licked the last of the juice from my lips, now I was done!
"Are you finished now or would you like me to have the chef cook you more?" He asked me, a smirk playing on his soft lips.
"I'm finished," I replied though I was eyeing the last of the prawns on his plate, "I don't think I could eat another thing!"
"Good," Edward chortled, "I'm sure the Islands prawn population is breathing a collective sigh of relief! If you keep eating them like that you'll decimate their numbers."
"Oh, Ha, Ha Edward you're such a comedian," I sighed rolling my eyes at him.
"I'm glad you think so," he retorted his smirk widening.
It felt great to joke around with Edward the way we used to do, it was easy, effortless to do now that my walls were down completely and I didn't take everything so seriously. I looked out over the moonlit water and was filled with a sense of peace that I had never experienced before, for the first time in a long time, everything felt complete. With Edward by my side, I felt complete.
My gaze drifted back to his seraphic face and my breath caught in my throat. He was beyond beautiful, his exquisiteness stunned my mind. I stared into his deep emerald eyes losing myself in the love that burned in them.
"Thank you Edward..." I murmured, "...for bringing me here. Thank you for giving me you."
Edward was out of his seat and I was in his arms in seconds.
"Bella," he whispered my name with a reverence that made me feel nothing less than extraordinary. His finger caressed my jaw coming to rest beneath my chin; softly he tilted my face toward his gazing at me with his sparkling bejewelled eyes. Again I was stunned; He simply took my breath away.
"...I want you," I sighed as the need to be closer; to be consumed by Edward blossomed into an aching desire in the pit of my stomach. My body soldered itself to his making its intention clear.
Edward scooped me up in his arms and crushed his lips to mine, his lips parted mine urgently and his warm breath flowed into my mouth. My body exploded into a frenzy. The sexual charge that emanated from deep within him flowed through me unimpeded and the aching hunger for him raged to the point of pain.
My arms weaved around his neck, my fingers lacing through his soft bronze hair, holding him to me as I kissed him greedily.
His mouth moved against mine with mirrored intensity, "My Bella," he whispered against his lips. A shiver of pleasure shot down my spine, I only ever wanted to be his Bella...
...Normally I would have been enchanted by the moonlight that flooded our bedroom, but its beauty could not hold my attention, not with Edward in the room. There was nothing more exquisite than Edward in the moonlight. Its weak light bathed him in a radiance that once more left me breathless.
Edward carried me to our bed kissing me softly he lay me in the centre and gently pressed his warm body against mine. I shivered lightly, not from cold but from desire. My fingers detangled themselves from his hair so I could stroke his cheek; I marvelled at the tingling in my fingertips, touching Edward's skin made me feel like I was magic.
He pulled his face back a fraction capturing my gaze with his own and my heart skipped a beat. Edward's emerald eyes searched mine, I don't what he was looking for but I hoped he found it, I hoped he could see the love and the trust I had for him. I didn't know how he couldn't see it there; I could feel it blazing in my eyes.
Our gazes stayed locked as he slowly removed my clothes, there was an awe set deep in his eyes as they roamed over my body that made me feel like I was the most beautiful woman in the world.
"Exquisite," Edward murmured as his fingers slid from my throat to my collarbone. His fingers continued their path; moving slowly across my breasts and down over my stomach, although they were barely touching me my skin tingled and my blood, molten hot, rushed to the surface.
Edward leaned in and brushed his soft lips against mine, a low groan slid from his throat as he sucked my bottom lip between his teeth. My frenzied body went into overdrive I was in almost physical pain now. He released my lip only to recapture my mouth in a searing kiss that left me breathless, when he did relinquish my mouth his moved hungrily along my jaw to the hollow beneath my ear,
"Bella," He whispered against my throat. Edward's lips explored the path his fingers had just traced, with the gentleness of butterfly wings he kissed the silver grey scar left by Tania's steely blade, "so strong, so brave, so beautiful," His voice was barely more than a whisper but I could hear the respect, the awe, that saturated it.
His lips, feather light, continued to work their magic on my skin as they moved across my stomach. My fingers weaved roughly through his hair holding his face to my body; I didn't want to lose the magic that flowed between us. His warm breath rushed across my skin causing a shiver of pleasure to shoot down my spine.
Edward's lips continued their path across my skin; my body trembled lightly beneath him; the anticipation coiling the muscles in the pit of my stomach. My body's reactions to his touch had not diminished at all over time if anything they were stronger now than they had ever been, my heart continued to try and beat its way out of my chest, the molten hot blood in my veins gushed through them fast and furious and every fibre in my being felt like a live-wire, his touch electrified me.
My breath hitched and my heart stopped beating, the anticipation, the knowledge of what was coming next sent my body into a chaotic frenzy. Edward placed one light kiss atop the small patch of dark hair before sliding his tongue along my sensitive flesh. A low growl rumbled from his chest the vibrations sent waves of pleasure deep within my core, my fingers tightened in his hair clutching at it roughly.
"Edward," I mewled breathlessly when he pushed his tongue inside me. My fingers tightened in his hair, I had to be hurting him but he did not tell me to loosen my grip, I wasn't sure I would have been able to had he asked me to.
Whatever else had changed between us the way he played my body had not, Edward had not forgotten, his tongue moved with precision as it commanded me, as it teased me into total submission. Edward was a master composer and my body his willing instrument.
A small part of my brain was aware of the soft mewling and half articulated words that were spilling from my lips but I could do nothing to stop them, I could not focus enough to form a coherent sentence. All I could focus on was Edward's tongue and the way he flicked it across my sensitive flesh, he knew that the action drove me wild.
Impossibly I yanked his hair harder, Edward's tongue was relentless now; I was hurtling toward my orgasm like freight train unable to focus on anything, so many sensations were pulling me in so many different directions, I didn't know which ones to follow. A stream of unarticulated words and sounds continued to fall from my lips. I teetered on the ledge waiting for Edward to finally tip me over the edge.
I forced myself to focus just long enough to articulate one word, "...Edward..." I breathed before I was once more sucked into the bewildering yet sweet abyss. He would know what I was trying to tell him.
He understood immediately, he plunged his tongue deep inside me knowing that's all I needed, suddenly I was falling, spiralling out of control, the waves of pleasure crashed down on me, the turbulent currents sucking me beneath the surface.
Although I could barely handle the intensity of the pleasure I was drowning in, I did not want re-emerge; I wanted the currents to hold me down.
"...Please Edward...Don't stop..." I begged deliriously; the next wave of pleasure was rearing up ready to break over me and keep me immersed in the chaotic bliss. I jerked my hips impatiently trying to garner more friction.
Edward knowing what I needed continued to relentlessly drive his tongue deep within me driving me toward a second, more powerful climax. My body continued to writher under his ministrations, the stream of incoherent words continued to tumble from my mouth; it was only his name I recognized amongst the ramble.
The rearing wave broke over me, pushing me deeper below the surface, the pleasure from my climax shuddered through my body sending me into near convulsions. My panting soon turned to gasping as I tried to get oxygen into my burning lungs...
...Finally my grip in Edward's hair loosened and my trembling thighs relaxed relinquishing their hold on him, he placed one chaste kiss on me and sat back. His eyes, black in the moonlight, roamed slowly over my body sending a tremor down my spine. My heart began to crash in my chest again, and an awed smile spread over my face as I watched him remove his clothes, but it stopped beating altogether as I took in the magnificent sight of Edward in the moonlight.
His skin, ghostly white, seemed to glow with a subtle luminosity that made him, as impossible as it was more beautiful, beyond beautiful. I had no words to describe how truly exquisite he was. Heart breaking, breathtaking, piercing, none of these terms described it.
I gasped quietly as Edward laid his body on mine and my heart kicked back into life, I felt like I had been electrocuted. The shock of electricity that flowed from Edward's body through mine jolted me physically. Desire chased the current through my veins.
Edward gently rolled us so I was on top of him, I could see the rash excitement, the desire that burned like green fire in his eyes and I could see the apprehension set deep beneath the flame. I understood immediately what it meant and what he needed.
I kept my gaze on his, as I quickly straddled his hips, I let all the love and trust I had for him show in my eyes, "I love you Edward," I murmured as I took him slowly and effortlessly inside me.
Edward's eyes rolled back in his head, I stroked his cheek lovingly.
"I love you to my Bella, always." He whispered. Keeping my eyes locked on his I began to rock back against him.
Edward's hands grasped my hips, controlling my movements, his green eyes blazed in the half light, a mixture of love and lust, his breathing laboured as I took him deeper inside me. I upped the tempo as I rocked against him, matching the pace of my movements to the besotted pace of my heart. I loved the feeling of grinding myself down on Edward, loved the feeling of having him inside me.
I watched the rising desire deepen in Edward's eyes, darken them, his hands gripped me tighter taking control. His fingers sinking into my flesh, as he thrust his hips meeting my downward motions. I shivered Edward's eyes had gone from dark green to jet black, fear suddenly flickered across them and his hands loosened their grip on me.
He was afraid he was losing control, he was afraid he was going to hurt me; I could see the fear growing in his eyes. I did not fear him.
My hands moved to cover his, holding them gently on my hips. I looked down at him with trust in my eyes and smiled reassuringly. "I know who you are Edward," I whispered, "I've seen your soul, you will not hurt me my love. Trust me my husband, I know your soul," I said with conviction, I had seen his beautiful brilliant soul. I knew every aspect that made up my Edward.
"Bella," He tried to say but I shook my head and cut him off.
"Sshh...I know baby...Don't be afraid...I love you, always." I murmured reassuring him. He had no reason to be afraid as I had no reason to fear him.
I ground down on him, keeping my movements slow, deliberate and uninterrupted, knowing the sinuous movements would bring forth his orgasm and my own. Edward continued to thrust his hips meeting my downward motions and burying him deeper into my warmth.
His shallow breathing was rapidly turning to gasping, he was so close. I was so close.
My movements became more forceful, my head lolled back and my eye fluttered closed as I moved against Edward with a growing intensity. But it would not be my movements that sent him over the edge; it would be the words I uttered next that would make him cum for me.
I waited until I heard the catch in his breath, waited until I felt his body begin to tense beneath me, as soon as his muscle bunched and his back began to arch I cried out the words I knew he longed to hear, "Only for you my husband, only ever for you,"...
... My name continuously roared from Edward's lips, it echoed around the room bouncing off the walls drowning out the sounds of my own cries. I kept my eyes on his as I continued to rock against him, knowing that his emerald eyes would help to ground me as much as my chocolate brown ones would anchor him.
There was nothing more beautiful than Edward lost in the throes of his climax; I was stunned once more by sheer magnitude of his beauty.
When Edward's body still beneath mine I collapsed onto his chest, my lips seeking his I kissed him softly, reverently. He wrapped me up in his warm embrace holding me tightly as my lips continued to move gently against his...
"Bella?" Edward's velvety voice broke through my idle musings, I looked up from my breakfast and my heart stopped beating.
I doubted I would ever get used to Edward's magnificence. For as glorious as he was in the moonlight he was equally as dazzling in the sunlight. The sun's rays shone on his coppery bronze hair bringing out the true uniqueness of the colour, the shock of bronze flamed hair brightened the green of his eyes; the dark emeralds glittered and sparkled in the bright light.
I sighed happily at his utter perfection...
My eyes drifted from his perfect face to his equally perfect body, his pale skin stretched taut over the contours of his muscles, "What's up Edward?," I asked as I dropped my gaze lower, and although a shiver of pleasure shot down my spine at his very prominent erection, my lips twisted into a smirk, "apart from the obvious," I snickered.
Edward groaned and I burst into a fit of laughter, before I could do anything more than catch a quick breath he leapt up from the table and scooped me into his arms; within seconds I was on our bed and he was on top of me kissing me hungrily...
... "So...you...wanted to ask me something," I asked Edward when I had found some measure of control over my breathing, as it was the question came out a little breathlessly. Edward rolled us over so I was now on top of him, a soft moan sliding from his lips as he did.
"Hmm...I did," he said taking my face between his hands tilting it up so his lips could explore the length of my throat. My heart gave an uneven thud then took off in a sprint, his warm breath fanned over my skin and I shivered in pleasure.
If I hadn't been insanely curious to know what Edward wanted to ask me I would have ignored the question on the tip of my tongue and given into the hunger for him that was coiling the muscles in the pit of my stomach, again.
"Well are you going to ask me?" I sighed as his lips reached the hollow of my throat.
He rolled us again, this time onto our sides, and swept my hair from my cheek, "So I was wondering since Apple and Louis are starting school next week you might like to come and work with me at the rehab centre? I've been thinking about it," He said enthusiastically, "We will be able to take Matisse and Noah with us, or Aro could watch over them. You can choose your own hours and I'll pay you whatever you want," He flashed me an impish grin, "I want us to work together again Bella."
Surprise, or more so shock, flooded through me. This had been the very last thing I had expected. Edward had spent the best part of the year getting his rehabilitation centre set up, I was so proud of him. He worked tirelessly now for the benefit of others, he was determined to help those who were battling alcoholism, determined that others not suffer to the extent he had.
Edward stroked my cheek as he held my gaze; I could see that he was trying to decipher my thoughts in my eyes.
"Did you have a specific job in mind?" I asked wondering what job Edward would want me to do, wondering what skills I could bring to the treatment centre. I reached up to touch Edward's cheek smiling when my fingertips began to zing with his magic.
"Well I was hoping you might consider helping set up and oversee the education sector. I know you write the education programs for your foundation, I was wondering if you might do the same. You know how important education is, some of the people the centre deals with are very intelligent yet the education system has failed them at one point and they have no qualifications to recognize their skills. You know if they have access to quality education they have the chance better their lives, to learn new skills that can help them become active members of society."
A slow blissful smile spread over my face; again I was in total awe of my husband. This was my Edward, the man I always knew he could be if he'd believed in himself. And now he did.
"I'm so proud of you...I love you so much Edward Cullen." I whispered, "I would be honoured to be part of your team at the centre. Thank you...for wanting me to share this with you."
Edward hugged me tighter, "No, thank you," He said happily. We stared at each other for a long moment, I was thinking about working with Edward again; well more so thinking about the first time I had worked for Edward as his PA. How different would it be this time?
"So..." I smirked, "You're going to be my boss again huh? I hope you invested in a better computer network this time and top of the line printers," I teased remembering back to the night of the office Christmas party and the battle I had fought that day with office equipment.
I expected to laugh with me but a frown marred his forehead, I brushed my fingertips along the creases and they smoothed under my touch.
"Bella," he said pulling me hard against him, "I won't be your boss sweetheart. I want us to work as partners."
I gasped audibly, "Partners," I mouthed.
"Of course partners. It's me and you against the world baby." I was stunned in total disbelief; I had never thought for one second that Edward would want me to be his partner. I thought that he'd want Irina to take a position like that.
I was filled with so much happiness that he wanted me as his partner, his equal. He thought that I had enough skills professionally to be worthy enough for that.
We were quiet for a long time, I lay in his arms; blissed out, with my gaze locked in his. I wished we could stay like this, I wished time would just stop and we could stay suspended in this moment forever.
But time stopped for no-one, our family would be arriving later and we still had tons to organize for Louis and Apple's birthday dinner.
"We should really start getting things set up for when the family arrives..." I sighed heavily, unenthusiastically.
A smirk twisted Edward's lips as he carefully rolled on top of me, "No we really should celebrate our new working relationship..." He said as he crushed his mouth to mine...
"Daddy..." Apple screeched happily as she tore down the long wooden pier into Edward's waiting arms. He swung her around, just as jubilant to see her and she was to see him. Their bond just as strong as it ever was. She put her tiny hands on his cheeks forcing him to look at her; she looked intently into his eyes for the longest moment before asking him the question that broke both of our hearts.
Edward recovered quicker than I did; he told her he was not sick; just happy that she was here. There was no time to dwell however, Matisse had reached Edward and was nestling herself into his free side Noah had charged after his sisters and had just collided with them and Edward.
"Dad!" Noah hollered as he flung his arms around his father's neck. Louis wasn't going to miss out on the fun; he piled on top of Edward who collapsed onto the wharf under the weight of the scrum.
I waved out to our laughing family as the approached then wrapped my arms around the pile of wriggling limbs that belong to my children. The sound of their delicious laughter made my heart swell, this was true happiness.
Louis' voice, louder than normal floated up from the melee wanting to know if Edward would take him to swim with the dolphins. As soon as Noah heard the word dolphin he wanted in on the action!
It was such a brilliant idea of Edward's to bring us here to celebrate; the kids loved Eden Island as much as I did, as much as Edward did.
Edward and I greeted the rest of our family with hugs and kisses, the only awkward moment came when I had to greet Esme, we embraced briefly barely hugging each other and both mumbling a strained hello. Charlie was barely more hospitable with Edward. I shook off the twinge of annoyance, even though things were far better between the four of us there were some lingering bitterness; mainly between Esme and I.
It did not bother me though nothing could put a damper on my happiness, especially not Esme.
I waited on the dock with Edward and Aro while our family chose their accommodations; they all had their favourite rooms, even Jacob and Leah! Although they had their son Seth with them I had paid special attention to their room, filling it with candles and scented flowers. I wanted to recreate a little bit of their honeymoon magic. Edward had given Jake and Leah use of the Island for their honeymoon. He had even flown them on the Cullen jet.
I hadn't understood why Edward had insisted on waiting before showing Aro where he would be sleeping until he shuddered lightly.
I followed his line of sight which was firmly trained on Rosalie and Emmett.
"Let it go," I whispered. I doubted he would ever get over what transpired between Aro and Rose the night of Aro's birthday.
"Come on old man," Edward muttered, to the man he considered his father; I could hear the pale echo of revulsion in his voice but I doubted Aro could...
...I took a seat on the lounger between Irina and Esme, wishing I could ask Alice if I could swap places with her on Irina's other side. I didn't fancy much talking in front of Esme.
My gaze drifted toward Edward and I sighed happily, all annoyance with the seating arrangements vanishing, as I watched him carry Matisse and Apple toward the water, Emmett and Jasper walked either side of him, Emmett holding Noah in his massive arms. The bond between Edward and his brothers was stronger than it had ever been.
Rosalie suddenly threw her seat next to Esme and I breathed a sigh of relief when they immediately started discussing wedding plans. I was ecstatic with my sister and Emmett's engagement for several reasons, some of them selfish. At least the heat would be taken off me when Esme had a new daughter in law, one that wouldn't be such a disappointment.
"He looks so much better, Bella, I just can't believe he's the same Edward!" Irina said suddenly. I pulled my unwilling eyes from Edward to see that Irina was watching him with a fond smile, "I've never seen Edward so blissfully happy and relaxed. God he's the Zen Master now!" She chuckled, "but seriously Bella the both of you look so happy. Watching you and Edward with your kids on the pier this morning, you guys were the picture of a blissfully happy family."
I saw Esme tense up in my peripheral vision, she leaned slightly toward me, listening.
"We are happy, probably more than we've ever been, but how could we not be?" I said loud enough for Esme to hear, "Edward and I have both learned from our mistakes, we know we'll never make the same mistakes again. We know how much we love each other, we know how deep our bond runs, and it's indestructible. Our children and our families are healthy and happy, Edward's health is improving and we have the whole world at our feet. It's hard not to feel blissfully happy when you're blessed with so much!"
Shockingly Esme suddenly reached out and took my hand and squeezed my fingers gently, "we are all blessed dear" She was looking down to the shoreline where Carlisle stood next to Demetri and Oliver watching his sons and grandchildren in the water, "and...It makes me happy to see my son and Grandchildren so happy. Irina's right Bella; you and Edward and your children are the picture of happiness."
She dropped my hand and I realized I was gaping at her, "thanks...Esme," I said regaining some composure over myself. She gave me what I deemed to be a warm and sincere smile before returning her attention back to Rosalie and the wedding plans.
I spent the rest of the afternoon on the beach with Irina and my sisters, Renee and Charlie had decided to trek around the small Island and Jake and Leah were back in their room while Seth had a sleep. It was a happy relaxed afternoon, a fun afternoon.
We didn't leave the shores until the sun was beginning to set and Edward emerged from the water with his now blue lipped daughters...
...The bouncy castle Edward and I had set up in one corner of the restaurant to entertain the kids was hit with the biggest kid of them all; Emmett spent the entire night bouncing on it like an overexcited five year old! He was flanked by his side kicks Noah and Oliver, who shadowed his every move. His booming laughter was joined by their high pitched squeals, Noah was completely hypoactive, I decided that Rosalie and Emmett could have in their room tonight; it would be good practice for Rose for when she had to try and get her own hypo children calm down enough to get them to bed!
It had taken threats of bodily harm from Esme to get Emmett off the bouncy castle long enough to come and sing happy birthday to his niece and nephew.
He grumbled about his mother ruining all his fun and Edward ruining their mother, as he took a seat next to Aro; who had Matisse perched happily on his lap.
Matisse and Noah adored their poppy Aro, worshipped him.
Edward held my hand as we watched Apple and Louis blow out their candles, Apple beamed at her cheering family soaking up the attention they lavished on her. Louis on the other hand looked slightly embarrassed by the fuss.
Their personalities were as different as their looks but they were both beautiful and vivacious in their own ways.
Edward raised our entwined hands to his face brushing his lips lightly across my knuckles, "Thank you," He whispered.
"What for?" I asked surprised.
"For giving me Apple and Louis and Matisse and Noah, Thank you for giving me you." He murmured obsequiously against my skin.
My heart swelled with love, happiness. I wasn't sure how much more bliss it could take before it exploded under the sheer weight of my euphoria.
I kissed Edward's sweet lips, "You're welcome," I murmured adoringly...
I had run out of superlatives to describe my happiness. The days on Eden blurred into one magical experience. Edward the children and I seemed to float along in our own sphere of bliss, by day we spent time on beach swimming and hanging out on the white sands. My nights were devoted to trying to get my fill of my husband's glorious body, a battle I knew I would always lose yet was willing to fight anyway.
Jasper and Alice dropped a bombshell revelation on the family, my sister was four months pregnant with a little girl; they were going to call her Jazmine Isabella Rose.
Both Renee and Esme were ecstatic with the news, as was everybody else.
I was beyond euphoric that my sisters' lives were going to be as blissfully happy as mine was...
...Time did not stand still and the week came to its end. When we left this tiny piece of paradise our lives would return to their hectic pace, Apple and Louis would start school and Edward would open his Drug and Alcohol rehabilitation centre and time would continue to pass.
I stared out over the sparkling turquoise waters of the lagoon absorbing as much magic as I could, I did not know when we would be able to return here but I hoped it would be sooner rather than later.
"Bella sweetheart, are you ready to go home?" Edward's soft velvety voice came from behind me. I closed my eyes at let its melodic nuance swirl around me like the caress of a gentle breeze. He wrapped me in his warm embrace, my body shivering with heat of the magic that began to flow between us; his chin came to rest lightly on my shoulder.
"Yes and no," I sighed. I twisted around in his arms to face him, knowing his angel face would chase away my small fit of despair.
"You don't want to leave?" He asked tightening his grip on me and pulling me impossibly close, he freed his hand to caress my cheek and I smiled at the trail of sparks it left across my skin.
"Not really," I confessed in a whisper, "I love it here Edward; it's such a magical place."
He looked down at me apologetically, I could from the regret in his eyes that he didn't want to leave either, "Sorry love but we have to go. I don't want to have to leave either." He confessed flexing his arms around me. He kissed me gently, sweetly, "I'll bring you back here whenever you want sweetheart." He murmured the oath against my lips.
"Kay, Thank you Edward," I sighed happily as he kissed me again.
"So are you ready to start the next chapter of our lives Mrs Cullen?" Edward asked as he turned us toward the pier where our family stood waiting on us. He wrapped his arm around my waist and pulled me hard against him.
"Yes I'm ready," I murmured knowing that it was true.
I was ready to face my future because whatever my future was I knew Edward would be by my side...
My breath caught in my throat and my heart stopped beating as Bella came into view, she stunned my mind. Her lustrous mahogany hair, haloed in a wreath of cream flowers, fell in soft curls that framed her face and carried on to caress her bare shoulders. The long white chiffon dress billowed slightly in the breeze; she held a small bunch of cream flowers completing the vision of an angel.
And she was both, vision and angel. Her face filled my mind, eclipsing everything else, the beauty of the sparkling ocean, the fragrant awning of flowers I stood beneath, the purple and gold streaked sky, the perfect sunset, they were nothing, nothing compared to Bella. Only an angel could be this breathtaking, only an angel could have forgiven me my sins.
She broke into an exulted smile, a smile so of full of love and joy it dazzled me, it took my breath away and it halted the small tremors that shook my hands. Although I had not touched alcohol nor had any uncontrollable desire to drink the tremors still shook my hands daily. But not today, today they were as still as my breath as I watched my angel, my wife, make her way toward me.
Love burned in her deep brown eyes, burned as bright as flame. She was as beautiful now as the day I had first met her. It felt like several life times had passed since the office Christmas party. As I watched Bella draw closer I thought about everything that had followed that fateful night, all the fear and pain and loss the happiness and joy.
We had been through so fucking much, not just what I had put us through but what Carlisle's and Tanya done to us, yet here we were still standing, still together. It was testament to the depth of the bond we had forged; it was testament to how much we loved each other. While we could survive apart, that's all we would do. Only when we were together could we truly live.
She continued to hold me prisoner in her gaze as she closed the distance between us, I was mesmerised by the way her hips swung when she walked. Everything about her held me enthralled.
There would never be anyone but Bella for me; she would always be the most beautiful woman in the world, I would only ever see her.
Seeing her smile filled me with happiness and it kept the hope alive that we were finally going to get our happy ever after...
It hadn't been easy at the start, although I was fucking euphoric at having Bella and my children back, it hadn't been easy. I knew I was a changed man, that I was radically different from the man Bella married but Bella was different to, she had changed yet she was still the same, at times it was confusing.
Reintegrating myself back into my family had been more difficult than I had anticipated, although I was ecstatic to have my wife and children back having to see firsthand the extent of the damage I'd inflicted on them had been excruciating. I shuddered remembering those first few months.
Watching the fear in Bella's eyes when I made any move to leave the room had been fucking excruciating, as much as watching her try to mask that fear was. Knowing that she was so unsure of her hold on me, knowing that she didn't trust me not to leave her had filled me with guilt and fear that was at times so fucking intense I thought it would fucking crush me.
But I didn't give into it, there was no way I was going to let guilt and fear rule my life, I would not be controlled by it anymore. Even in saying that it was still fucking hard.
If watching Bella's reactions were excruciating, there were no words horrific enough to describe seeing the wounds my absence in the lives of my children had inflicted. I shuddered again more violently this time and the rising bile burned my throat. My hands shook brutally as the image of Apple flashed before my eyes.
Whilst Bella tried to hide her fear Apple did not, if I left the room without telling her first, if I managed to slip out unnoticed she would fly into a panic as soon as she discovered I was gone. Panic was probably not the right word to describe it acute fear may have been better. Apple would tear through the house screaming out for me, the terror was so clear in her voice, in every one of her uncontrolled sobs.
Every one of them was like a dagger stabbing my heart.
It sickened me to my core yet at the same time I was beyond fucking grateful when I would see the look of absolute relief on my eldest daughters face when she'd find me.
Her first words were always the same, "you were gone. You not leave me aye Dad? I can make you better. You not allowed to leave."
It didn't matter how many times I promised her I would never leave her again Apple continued to react the exact same way when I was out of her sight.
Louis was not as open with his own fears but I saw them deep in his eyes. He always noticed when I was leaving the room, he would never say anything; he would never ask me where I was going or if I was coming back. He would get up and go to his mother but his eyes would follow me as he whispered to her.
When I asked Bella, she said Louis would ask her where I was going and if I was coming back.
He accepted her assurances that I wouldn't leave without question. I wasn't sure if he trusted me not leave or if he trusted his mother to tell him the truth. Whatever the reason I was just fucking happy he cared enough to want me to come back.
There had been a lot of hurt, The whole fucked up situation hurt, but the pain hadn't weaken me. I still fought the urges to turn to the bottle but they didn't consume me. I knew I was strong enough, that I would never succumb to them again.
It hurt to see the damage I had done to my family but the euphoria of having them back and knowing I could keep them made it possible to keep the guilt from overwhelming me.
Noah and Matisse had had no problems with us living together as a family, Noah reminded me of Emmett in a lot of ways, he was as fearless as my older brother. He charged into situations with the same blasé attitude yet wild enthusiasm as his uncle. Nothing frightened Noah and he had more energy than the rest of my kids put together. He never stopped moving unless he was asleep and even then he would toss and turn and kick his blankets off. Nothing seemed to slow down or faze Noah.
But my youngest son was a kind boy, he was never intentionally mean.
Matisse, I shook my head and smiled, I just didn't really know how to describe my youngest daughter. She was so different from her siblings, especially her twin brother, yet she still shared similar traits with them all. She was a loving and kind child, exceptionally so, yet Matisse did not draw attention to herself in any way. Matisse had a special light about her, she just radiated love. She was so quiet but extremely observant, she preferred to watch rather than speak.
We had such a different relationship, I would try to spend time with her and I was sure she enjoyed it but if one of the other children demanded my attention, Matisse would kiss my cheek, smile at whichever of her siblings wanted me slide off my lap and find something else to do. It never seemed to bother her giving up her time with me. It would have bothered me more, but she was exactly the same with Bella. If one of the other kids wanted her attention Matisse would react the same way. She wasn't just like that with our attention; she was like that with everything, she was always happy to share what she had with her siblings. It was obvious that she loved them.
Matisse reminded me of Aro...
It had gotten easier though, as time had passed. As the weeks merged into months the fear had started to fade from Bella's eyes, the love and trust she had once held for me had started to light her warm chocolate eyes once more
Looking at her now, all I could see was the old Bella, my Bella. The one who gazed at me like I was the only man in the world for her: like I was the only one she would ever want.
I fucking loved this woman.
"Bella," I whispered reverently when she got to my side. Her radiance stunned my mind. I wrapped my arm around her waist and pulled her closer, sighing at the way her body moulded to the shape of mine.
She was my perfect fit.
I looked deep into her eyes, losing my train of thought. There were so many things I wanted to say to her, so many things that she needed her to hear but I had no idea how to articulate them. There was no minister this time to have me repeat my vows. This time the words I spoke, the commitments I made to her would come from me.
This time I would keep my promises to her, I would never hurt her again.
The eternity ring I was going to present her sat clasped in my hand, I concentrated on its meaning while I tried to find the right words to tell Bella what she meant to me.
"I love you Edward," she murmured raising her hand to stroke my cheek; my skin tingled under her touch.
"I love you to Bella, so much." I took her hand from my cheek and kissed her fingertips, before sliding the diamond band onto her finger, where it joined the other symbols of my love and commitment to her.
Remembering what her hand looked like when she hadn't worn them, remembering her face the day she had returned them to me flashed behind my eyes and prompted me into speech. I would never see her without those rings again, "I love you and I swear to you that I always will. I will never forsake you; I will never leave you or hurt you ever again, I will never ask you for more than you want to give. I vow to you Bella you can trust me. I will spend the rest of forever being the best husband and father I can be. I will fight for our happy ever after my love."
I raised our joint hands and kissed the rings on her finger, sealing the vows I had just made, before taking her face gently in my hands, "forever," I promised as I captured her lips with my own.
Bella's arms twined around my neck, I dropped my hands from her face and wrapped them around her waist, pulling her into me so there was no space in between us. As with every-time we touched, the passion, the lust and desire, still flowed between us potent as it ever was, but this time it was love not desire that dominated the kiss.
"Thank you Edward," she whispered tenderly against my lips before claiming my mouth once more...
...This was the first time Bella and I had been truly alone in the time we had been back together, it seemed fitting that we were here on Bella's Island. Eden had been our safe haven; it was the place that held some of the happiest memories we had. It had harboured us in times of sadness also; it had been the place we came to heal from the loss of our child. It was the place where we decided to try for more children, a blessing answered in the form of Matisse and Noah.
It was the place we had created our first memories together as husband and wife, not only did I want Bella to remember those memories; Eden was the place I wanted to start creating new memories with her, where I wanted us to truly start our Happy Ever After.
Tomorrow our family and friends would join us in celebration, but for tonight it was just the two of us and I planned to make every second count! Tonight I planned to recreate the best of our time here but in doing that I knew it would be better than last time, how could it not be when the bond forged between Bella and I was that much stronger now?
I led Bella onto the beach watching her lips curve into a smile as her gaze fell on the table set for two on the shoreline; the setting sun bathed the whole scene in a fiery orangey glow.
"Edward..." Bella murmured, her eyes misting over. She was remembering.
"I know sweetheart. I remember..." there was nothing more that needed to be said.
The sunset gave way to the rising moon; it rose over ocean turning the black water a shimmering silvery grey, not that I had eyes for the scenery, the majority of my focus was on the beautiful woman who sat opposite me indulging her love of seafood. Her eyes shone brightly, a mixture of love and bliss danced in their vast chocolaty depths. The fragrant perfume of her floral halo mixed with the spicy cinnamon scent of her hair to create the most intoxicating scent, it made my mouth water.
I watched, hungrily, as she popped a king prawn between her pink pouty lips with a soft moan, and I had to stifle the low grown in the back of my throat. I wanted to kiss, to nip on those succulent lips; I wanted to taste her sweet breath on my tongue.
Although I hungered for these things, I did not act on them. I would not push my needs on my wife. I would not take from her enjoyment to slake my own. I would allow her to take things at her own pace. I would not take more than she was willing to give.
I watched, tortured, as she slid the last of the prawns between her lips, it took all my new found self control to stay in my seat when she sucked her pouty bottom lip between her teeth removing the drop of prawn juice that had glistened there.
"Are you finished now or would you like me to have the chef cook you more?" I smirked. Inside I was fucking praying she was full, I doubted my self control would stretch as far as being able to sit and watch her eat another bowl of the wretched sea bugs.
No myself control would not last, as it was I wanted to forgo the moonlit walk on the beach I had planned and clear the table so I could fuck her senseless on it. My hands gripped said table holding me in place while I waited for her to answer. I took a deep breath through my nose, trying to calm myself down, there was no hurry I reminded myself; we had all night.
"I'm finished," she grinned, "I don't think I could eat another thing!"
"Oh thank fuck for that," I mumbled under my breath, too low for Bella to hear, "Good, I'm sure the Islands prawn population is breathing a collective sigh of relief! If you keep eating them like that you'll decimate their numbers." I smirked.
"Oh Ha, Ha, Edward you're such a comedian," Bella retorted rolling her wide warm eyes.
"I'm glad you think so," my smirk widened but inside I was flying. Seeing Bella so happy, carefree and relaxed, instead of scared and cautious, it was like seeing my Bella again for the first time.
I watched her quietly as she stared out over the moonlit water.
Bella turned back to me and my breath caught in my throat, she was so beautiful, the moonlight had leeched the colour from her skin turning it a luminous pale ivory, her lustrous hair looked as black as night, making her skin all the paler; all the more exquisite. Her wide chocolate eyes were backlit with a love that shone brighter than it ever had; the depth of it staggered me.
"Thank you Edward...," She murmured her angel face breaking into a beatific smile and my heart stop fucking beating, again. "...for bringing me here, thank you for giving me you."
I leapt from my seat and pulled Bella from hers, my arms wrapped around her crushing her to me, "Bella," I breathed her name reverently. My finger slid along her jaw tilting her heart shaped face to mine; again I was staggered by the love in her eyes.
"...I want you," she sighed huskily pressing herself into me.
I groaned internally as all thoughts of midnight walks and swims in the lagoon vanished, all I could think about now was feeling her naked body beneath my own. I scooped her up into my arms and kissed her deeply, the omnipresent embers of passion erupted into a firestorm between us. Bella's arms snaked around my neck, her fingers gripping my hair.
I fucking loved that feeling.
"My Bella," I moaned lowly into her mouth...
...Moonlight spilt through the floor to ceiling windows that made up one entire wall of our bedroom, the water sparkled invitingly but I paid it no attention, Bella's pouty lips, dusky pink and succulent in the pale light of the moon were infinitely more inviting. I laid her on the bed kissing her softly as I lay down on top of her. She relinquished her grip in my hair her gentle fingers touched my cheek, stroking the skin softly as they followed the contour of my cheekbone.
I pulled my face back a fraction gazing at the goddess beneath me, her soft brown eyes looked up at me owlishly, behind the deep love that burned flamed bright I could see the trust she had for me swirling deep within their endless depths. A small smile played on the soft pink pillows that were her lips. I was in awe of my wife, her capacity for love and forgiveness knew no boundaries. It was clearly written in her eyes that she believed the promises I had made her today, she knew I would not leave her again, she knew I would not hurt her.
Words couldn't describe how it felt to know that I had won her trust back. It meant more than anything to me knowing that she had faith in the promises I had made to her.
I removed her clothes slowly, with reverence, taking the time to drink in and savour the sight of the majestic angel in all her naked glory. "Exquisite," I murmured as my fingers traced a line from the sinuous column of her throat across her collarbone.
My fingertips were barely touching her skin, as they moved down the soft swell of her breasts and across her stomach, yet the current that radiated from deep within her flowed so strong through my fingertips.
I leaned in and captured her mouth with my own, drawing her pouty bottom lip between my teeth, sucking on the soft pink pillow with a low groan.
My desire burned molten hot, I needed this woman, my wife, more than fucking food and oxygen. Only Bella could sustain me. I breathed deeply, taking a moment to make sure I was in complete control of my need, I could never lose control with Bella again; I would never hurt her again, not emotionally and definitely not physically.
I kissed her deeply not relinquishing her luscious lips until I could feel her struggling for breath, my mouth slid along her jaw refusing to lose the connection to her skin.
"Bella," I sighed as my mouth explored the supple skin of her throat. My mouth followed the path my fingers had just trekked, stopping to lavish attention on her magnificent breasts. Her skin tasted like heaven. I kissed the silvery scar that marked her breast reverently, "so strong, so brave, so beautiful,"
Awe for my wife's strength flooded through me. She was fucking perfect.
Bella's fingers laced through my hair tugging it roughly as she fought to keep my mouth on her. Silly Bella as if it want to be anywhere fucking else.
My nose slid down over her stomach and my nostril flared, I could smell her arousal, the sweet musky scent flowed into my lungs and overwhelmed my senses. Within a heartbeat I was a man dying of thirst, my desiccated throat would only be quenched by the warm silky essence that flowed from the utopia between Bella's thighs.
Her body trembled beneath mine, my hot breath fanned out across her skin causing a shiver to rush though Bella's body. I was filled with a heady rush of pride, knowing that it was my touch that had her shivering in pleasure not fear, and as I had the other times I had engendered these reactions in her I felt a sense of redemption. My touch only brought her only pleasure and happiness now. My nose skimmed lower meeting the small patch of dark silky hair; Bella's musky sweetness thickened the air engulfing me in a heady mist. A low growl rumbled from deep in the back of my throat as I drew my tongue up the slick silky folds.
"Edward..." Bella whimpered as I plunged my tongue deep into the pooled moisture. The way she said my name sent me into a near fucking frenzy. Her fingers yanked at my hair holding me to her as I sucked her sensitive flesh between my lips.
There was nothing that could compare to the taste of her.
I continued my ministrations; driving my tongue deep into Bella's warmth, and interpreting every infinitesimal shift in her body. I knew Bella's body better than I knew my own, I could read every reaction, knew exactly what every breathless sigh, every moan and every whimper that fell from her luscious lips meant.
Her thighs started to quiver the muscles tightening as they pressed against the sides of my head, the breathless moans and half articulated words were falling from her lips in an uninterrupted stream. Bella was close.
I upped the tempo; flicking my tongue over her clit just the way she loved it; knowing it would push my angel close to the edge.
Bella tightened her grip in my hair, nearly yanking it from the roots; she was so close, teetering on the edge. Within seconds the soft mewling noises would cease long enough for her to say my name, it would fall from her lips like a sigh but it would be a plea for me to play her body, to compose it like the finely tuned instrument in was. I continued to tease her, continued to breathe in the heady scent of her arousal, the fragrance was so heavy around me it overwhelmed my senses. The current radiating from deep within her charged the air; the static charge was almost tangible.
"...Edward..." she whispered. My eyes rolled back in my head at the sound.
I plunged my tongue deep inside her, the action guaranteed to push Bella over the edge, I groaned against her as the warm silky fluid flowed over my tongue. My hard cock gave a painful throb, the anticipation and frustration at not being buried in that warm wet paradise was driving me to distraction.
"...Please Edward...Don't stop..." My Goddess pleaded as tightened her already death grip in my hair and her vice like hold her thighs had on me. She thrust her hips, agitated, trying to garner more friction as she rode out her orgasm. I continued to tease her relentlessly, knowing I would be rewarded with more of her breathless cries, more of Bella's warm satiny essence. She continued to thrash under my ministrations crying out a symphony of inarticulate words, my name was the only word recognizable in the jumble.
Slowly I ceased my relentless teasing and the last of the tremors rippling through her body finally began to still. Her fingers relinquished my hair and her thighs relaxed, I placed a kiss in the silky patch of hair and sat back on my heels taking in the majesty that was my Bella.
The moonlight split through the window illuminating the room and Bella in a weak silvery light, her skin, as white as porcelain, gleamed like mother of pearl. Her hair fanned out across the pillow, raven black in the moonlight, contrasted exquisitely with her bone white skin.
She looked like an enigma. Ethereal, otherworldly, she looked like an angel.
Bella looked up at me with her owlish eyes; the warm chocolate replaced by black diamonds, like her skin, her eyes glittered in the pale light. A soft smile played on her delectable lips as she watched my every move. I kept my gaze on her, letting her beauty fill my vision, as I quickly shed my clothes and pressed my body against hers.
I rolled us gently, and Bella knowing what I needed quickly sat up, her tender gaze not leaving mine as she straddled my hips. "I love you Edward," She murmured as she took me effortlessly into her warmth. My eyes rolled back in my head at the sensation, it was sublime, and I wondered how the fuck I survived over a year without this feeling, how I survived one fucking day.
She stroked my cheek as I sunk deeper into her heaven
"I love you to my Bella, always." A slow smile spread across her lips, her hands came to rest against my chest, giving herself leverage as she started to rock back against me. I gripped her hips, and I stared up mesmerized as her breast swayed tantalizingly centimetres from my face...
...The sounds that fell from Bella's lips as she rode my throbbing cock were driving me into a frenzy, at times I struggled to maintain control over the overwhelming sensations that pulled me in a million different directions. I could not hurt her; my arms could not hold her too tight, they could never mark her skin again. I could not give into the overwhelming desire that would drive me to extremes. I would not hurt her. I loosened my grip on her hips, giving control over to Bella.
Her wide warm eyes burned into mine, she moved her hands to cover mine pressing them gently against her hips, "I know who you are Edward, I've seen your soul, you will not hurt me my love." she whispered as she continued to rock against me, "Trust me my husband I know your soul," she repeated.
"Bella...I," I started to say but she cut me off.
"Sshh...I know Baby...Don't be afraid...I love you always," She whispered, reassuring me. She kept her hands on mine and our gazes stayed locked as she brought me closer. Bella ground down on me, she knew my body as well as I knew hers, she knew the uninterrupted flow of her sinuous movements would tip me over the edge. My hips bucked upward meeting her downward motion, burying me even deeper into her heaven.
As much as Bella movements had me hurtling toward my climax it was the words that fell from her lips that sent me into a free fall. The spike in her breathing told me she was close to her own release.
Bella's head fell back as she ground herself down on me, her movements more forceful than before, seeking more from me. I let her take what she needed.
Her muscles clamped around me, "Only for you my husband, only ever for you," She cried out breathlessly in the throes of her pleasure.
Those words...God I fucking loved them. I lived for those words; I'd do anything and everything to make sure I heard those words spill from her lips every day for the rest of my life.
The tingling vibrations of electricity that radiated from deep within Bella shot through my body fusing with the tiny flickers of electricity that pulsed from deep within my own to form one seething ball of energy that exploded in the pit of my stomach and rapidly spread through my body. Every cell of my being awakened and thrummed frenetically as Bella's life force flowed through me energizing and filling me with her light.
Her name reverberated around the room, echoing off the walls as it continued to roar from my lips. Bella kept me trapped in her gaze, keeping me anchored to her and the moment as I spilt myself inside her.
When my body had stilled and I had regain some control over my breathing Bella collapsed against my chest, her pouty pink lips sought mine and she kissed me softly, sweetly...
"Bella?" I looked up from my computer and my breath caught in my throat, I doubted I would ever get over how beautiful she was. I loved the way the sun brought out the red in her hair.
She looked up from her breakfast, her warm chocolate eyes meeting mine and I instantly lost my train of thought. It was so easy to lose myself in her eyes.
"What's up Edward?" Her eyes drifted over my chest and lower, "apart from the obvious," she smirked and I groaned. She burst into a fit of giggles the sound sending a shockwave to my already hard dick.
I leapt up from the table, all thoughts of my original question gone as I scooped her up into my arms and carried her back to our room...
... "So...you...wanted to ask me something," Bella asked a little breathlessly. I rolled us over pulling her warm naked body on top of mine with a soft moan. Her body felt sublime pressed against mine.
"Hmm...I did," I said taking her face in my hands and angling it up so I could kiss the soft skin of her throat.
"Well are you going to ask me?" She sighed as I pressed my lips into the hollow at the base of my throat. I rolled us onto our sides and reached up to sweep an errant curl from her cheek.
"So I was wondering since Apple and Louis are starting school next week you might like to come and work with me at the rehab centre? I've been thinking about it," I said eagerly, "We will be able to take Matisse and Noah with us, or Aro could watch over them. You can choose your own hours and I'll pay you whatever you want," I flashed her a wicked grin, "I want us to work together again Bella."
I stroked her warm cheek as I tried to read her thoughts in her eyes. I had spent the good part of the last year setting up a thirty five bed treatment centre for those people, like Ben and Tia, who could not afford to pay the astronomical fees set by private rehabilitation centres to get help for their addictions. Not only did I have an in-house program but the centre offered outpatient programs, along with a huge range of other services, everything from budgeting advice, parenting classes to higher education.
"Did you have a specific job in mind?" Bella asked thoughtfully as she reached up to trail her fingers down my cheek.
"Well I was hoping you might consider helping set up and oversee the education sector. I know you write the education programs for your foundation, I was wondering if you might do the same. You know how important education is, some of the people the centre deals with are very intelligent yet the education system has failed them at one point and they have no qualifications to recognize their skills. You know if they have access to quality education they have the chance better their lives, to learn new skills that can help them become active members of society."
Bella face broke into an exultant smile, I wasn't quite sure why but her eyes were suddenly filled with awe, the look she was giving me filled me with pride.
"I'm so proud of you...I love you so much Edward Cullen. I would be honoured to be part of your foundation," Pride saturated her voice and her warm brown eyes, "thank you," she whispered, "for wanting me to share this with you."
"No, thank you," I said jubilantly. I couldn't believe how fucking happy I was that we were going to work together again. It would not be like the first time, I would not be her boss, we would be equals, partners, our professional relationship would mirror our personal one.
"So..." Bella smirked, "You're going to be my boss again huh? I hope you invested in a better computer network this time and top of the line printers,"
I frowned at her assumption that I would be her boss opposed to her partner. "Bella," I said pulling her body flush with my own, "I won't be your boss sweetheart. I want us to work as partners."
She gasped audibly, "Partners," she mouthed as if the thought had never crossed her mind.
"Of course partners. It's me and you against the world baby."
Bella positively beamed at me, her smile radiated happiness; she obviously liked the idea of being partners as much as I did.
"Thank you Edward," She said quietly.
We lay silently; I lost myself in Bella's warm loving eyes while I stroked her soft warm cheek. If I could I lie here next to her forever, there was nothing to compare the tranquillity and peace I found in Bella's eyes...
"We should really start getting things set up for when the family arrives..." Bella sighed unenthusiastically.
I smirked as I rolled on top of her "No we really should celebrate our new working relationship..." Before she could come back with a snappy retort I crushed my mouth to hers effectively ending our conversation...
... "Daddy..." Apple squealed in delight as she tore down the long wooden pier and into my waiting arms. I scooped her up and swung her around earning a peal of her delicious laughter. I pulled her into my chest and hugged her tightly, her little hands pressed firmly against my cheeks forcing to me look into the mirror image of my own eyes, "You're not sick aye Dad?" She asked seriously.
My heart clenched but I smiled at the love that shone in her sparkling eyes, "No sweetheart Daddy's not sick but he is happy you're here." I tickled her tummy and was reward with another peal of her delicious laughter.
Matisse reached me next I bent down so I could hug my youngest daughter. Suddenly I was falling backward Matisse and Apple falling onto my chest as Noah collided with us.
"DAD!" He yelled as he flung his arms around my neck. He grinned impishly ignoring his elder sister's angry rant. Emmett's booming laugh sounded from somewhere close by, it was followed closely by Bella's sweet laughter.
"Hey Tiger," I said somewhat breathlessly since I had just had all the air knocked out of my lungs.
I had only just got a lungful of air when Louis joined the fray, the air left my lungs in a whoosh and my body groaned under the weight of my children, I didn't try to move them I pulled them closer hugging the pile of bodies best I could.
Bella carefully wrapped her arms around us best she could and my bliss was complete. This was true fucking happiness. My family continued its group hug until Louis quiet voice floated up through the mass of giggles and squeals of delight.
"Can we swim with the dolphins, dad?" He asked excitement flooding his voice. Louis loved dolphins.
"Dolpins Daddy, Dolpins...!" Noah chanted his green eyes alive with the same excitement that possessed Louis.
"You'll all have to get off me so I check to see if any of my bones are broken from being crushed by you bunch of fatties!" I teased.
"You're the fatty daddy," Apple giggled...
... After greeting our family, Bella and I let them choose their accommodations, everyone but Aro had been here before and they all had their favourite rooms to stay in. I waited on the dock with Aro and Bella until Rose and Emmett had chosen their room.
My stomach lurched and I shuddered involuntarily, Bella leaned into me and sighed, "Let it go Edward." She knew what revolting thought had crossed my mind.
"This way old man," I gestured to the old hippy that was my father in most ways, leading him in the opposite direction to Rosalie and Emmett's room. There was no fucking way I was letting those three sick fuckers stay anywhere near each other, even though Rosalie and Emmett were engaged I didn't know if that fact there would prevent a fucking encore performance of that disgusting night...I shuddered again...
...My brother's joined me in the warm water; Emmett took control of Noah whilst Jazz kept an eye on Louis as he snorkelled around us. I held onto Apple and Matisse as they watched the dolphins swimming within a few feet of us.
"You look good Edward," Japer commented, "You've got some colour back in your cheeks and I don't believe I've ever seen you this relaxed and happy, Bella for that matter to. You two look happier than I've ever seen you."
I beamed at my brother; Jasper had always been one of my biggest supporters, especially when it came to my relationship with Bella,
"Thanks Jazz. I don't think I've ever been this happy. I've got everything I ever wanted and I'm never letting it go again." I kissed both my daughter's foreheads then searched the shoreline for my beautiful wife. It was Bella I had to thank for giving me everything.
"You're a lucky man Edward," he agreed looking down at his niece's with a grin.
"How about you Jazz; how's life?"
"You know me Edward I can't complain," He chortled, "I...I have something to tell you...I'm going to be a father! Alice is four months pregnant with our little girl."
It was my turn to beam at my brother, "that's awesome Bro! I highly recommend children," I said thinking about the sheer bliss my children had given me. I wanted both of my brothers to experience the same happiness that I had with Bella and our children.
Jasper laughed at my glowing recommendation, "Having children definitely agrees with you!"
I kissed my daughters on their foreheads. "Its true fatherhood is my proudest achievement, nothing compares to it." I looked over at my brother, "I'm so happy for you Jazz, you and Alice."
We stayed in the water for most of the afternoon, Apple only agreeing to leave the water and the dolphins when I told her we had to get ready for hers and Louis birthday party...
...Apple and Louis leaned forward in perfect sync with each other and blew out the candles on their cake while their family sang a rousing chorus of 'happy birthday.'
I took Bella's hand in mine and raised it to my lips kissing her knuckles softly, "Thank you," I murmured against her fingers.
"For giving me Apple and Louis and Matisse and Noah, Thank you for giving me you."
She kissed me softly, "You're welcome," she murmured against my lips...
Spending the week on Eden with my family were the happiest days of my life to date, every day Bella and I spent time with our children, swimming and playing on the pristine white sands.
To my utter astonishment Charlie, after getting me alone, had shaken my hand and not only congratulated me on how far I had come in the last year but he also thanked me for making Bella so happy. He had been elated to see the sparkle back in his daughter's eyes.
It had also not escaped my notice that there had been a massive thawing in my mother's attitude toward my wife. Esme seemed to be making an effort to be nice, I knew there was no way she could deny how happy and how perfect we were as a family. Bella seemed to content to put their differences behind her, she, like Esme, was making an effort to be nice to. It seemed to be working out well for them. I wasn't the only one who was ecstatic at this new development, Carlisle seemed just as happy that his wife and daughter in law had finally made peace.
We ate dinner with our family every night in the restaurant, their laughter and happiness only added to my own. Once the kids were in bed, I spent the rest of the night trying to slake the overwhelming desire I had for Bella. It was an impossible feat.
Jasper and Alice announced their pregnancy to the family and the week ended on a note of true celebration...
... "Bella sweetheart, are you ready to go home?" I asked as I wrapped my arms around her waist and rested my chin on her shoulder. The rest of our family were making their way onto the pier, Bella was standing on the water's edge looking out over the lagoon.
Bella spun in my embrace she wrapped her arms around my neck and smiled a little glumly as she met my gaze, "Yes and no," she murmured.
"You don't want to leave?" I asked pulling her hard against my chest. I bought my hand up to stroke her warm cheek.
"Not really," she sighed a small smile on her angel lips, "I love it here Edward; it's such a magical place."
Bella was right about that; Eden was a magical place, a place where Bella was at her happiest. I sighed I didn't want to leave either.
"Sorry love but we have to go. I don't want to have to leave either." I pulled Bella harder against my chest and kissed her softly, "I'll bring you back here whenever you want sweetheart." I promised her, sealing the vow with a kiss.
"Kay," she whispered, "Thank you Edward."
I crushed my mouth to hers, kissing her deeply. I fucking loved this woman.
"So are you ready to start the next chapter of our lives Mrs Cullen?" I asked my exquisite wife as I turned us to face the pier where our family waited for us. I wrapped my arm securely around Bella's waist and pulled her into my side, where she belonged.
"Yes I'm ready," she said quietly but her voice was confident. Bella was ready, we both were.
I walked us toward the pier, toward our future wherever that may be, all I knew was when the future found us it would find us together and it would find us blissfully happy...
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