I wrote this as a present for my wifey, EchoesOfTwilight. She's lovely, so she's letting me share this with you all.
I don't own Twilight, Ren and Stimpy, Pulp Fiction or White Diamonds (thank God for that).
So, without further ado, here's a glimpse into the future for our favorite foursome…
More outtakes and future shots will be posted here as I get ideas. I know, I need to finish this damn thing before I start doing extras, but this idea wouldn't leave me alone.
December 31st, 2010 – Liz Taylor and Dr. Spock
"These have always brought me luck…"
God, will they ever stop playing that commercial at Christmastime? Seriously, who believes Liz Taylor still looks like that? They've been running the same damn spot for at least twenty years.
Old Liz might have been hot once (hey, she did have eight husbands), but now she just looked like the epitome of the demographic that wore White Diamonds.
Eight husbands? That's a harem! We must meet this "Old Liz," Bella!
I ignored them. I'd lived with them for so long that I sometimes went days without really noticing their inappropriate comments.
"Yeah, well, share the wealth, Liz," I muttered, bouncing the fussy baby in my lap. "I need some luck." I fixed my determined gaze on his blinking, owlish face, brushing the tip of his nose with my fingertip. I was rewarded with a loud squawk that could have passed for I couldn't be happier if I was having breakfast from Dolly Parton's left tit or I just shit my diaper after eating pureed habanero peppers.
"You've got a mouth on you just like your Daddy does, EJ," I said gravely, slowly shaking my head at him. Edward came up to sit next to me on the couch, poking EJ's well-insulated belly and earning a sweet giggle.
I guess that was a Dolly Parton squawk.
"That mouth reminds me more of someone else," he snickered, nudging me with his shoulder.
"Shut it," I said, giving him a flat look.
"I rest my case."
I rolled my eyes and turned back to EJ, making random faces and earning one grudging smile.
"I can't believe they still use that commercial," Edward said in disbelief, shaking his head. "Then again, I guess they can't make a new one…" He pretended like he was propelling himself in a wheelchair. "These have always brought me luck," he tittered in a hilarious, shaking falsetto. I dissolved into tear-choked laughter.
We are so made for each other…
When my eyes met his, I was sucked into the whirlpools of deep green pigment, just like always. He hooked an arm around my shoulders and leaned in, catching my lips in a soft kiss. I sighed, trying not to melt right into him and drop the squirming bundle from my lap.
As if he'd read my mind, EJ promptly started screaming again, effectively squelching all the dirty thoughts that had begun filtering into my head as soon as his lips had touched mine. I groaned in frustration, knowing it wasn't the baby's fault I couldn't understand him. It just…it hurt to know that I couldn't fix what was wrong and make everything better.
"I don't know what else to do," I whined, trying not to give in to the tears of frustration that were dying to come out.
"He's got to be tired; he hasn't napped since this morning," Edward mused. "We just need to help him relax."
"Oh, thanks for that pearl of wisdom there, Dr. Spock," I retorted, letting my irritation get the best of me. "We've already tried putting him down ten million times."
"Bella." His voice was soft and understanding and I looked up to meet his eyes. I noticed the hint of lavender hue beginning to pool beneath his eyes, making me feel instantly awful for snapping at him. He was just as weary as I was. "I know you're tired and frustrated. Why don't you let me take him for a bit while you decompress?"
"No, no. You're just as tired as I am and that's not fair to you. We're doing this together." I cradled EJ, letting him rest his head on my shoulder as his fussing quieted. Freeing one hand, I reached up to feel the scratchy warmth of Edward's cheek. "I'm sorry for snapping…I just feel so…lost! I can't make him feel better. I don't know what the hell to do," I sighed, not knowing what else to say.
"You're not lost," he said reassuringly. "I'm right here with you." He smiled, pressing a quick kiss to my palm before taking it in his own. "And I'll always be right here, no matter how many bitchy comments you throw at me." He was smirking now, very pleased with his little zinger. I wanted to be angry, but his ability to dish it out as well as I did was one of the very first things I'd admired about him.
You mean after his sex hair and those fingers…and lips…and the Precious…
I smirked back, letting know his mini-torpedo had struck a glancing blow, but he was far from sinking my Battleship.
"You'd better stop right there if you know what's good for you," I warned.
He chuckled loudly, drawing a curious look from EJ. "I had no intention of going any further."
I nodded in agreement, reclaiming my hand to gently pat EJ on the back. "He's a nice guy, huh? I guess we'll keep him," I cooed. Yes – I, practical, snarky Bella, actually cooed. I tried not to throw up in my mouth a bit at the thought.
"Damn right, you'll keep me. Just call me your favorite albatross."
I had to laugh. "Nope, I can't do that."
He gave me The Pout. "Why not?"
"Because if you were my albatross, that means I'd always be looking for a way to get you off my neck," I said softly, giving him a small, secretive smile.
"You're so Goddamn romantic," he sighed, placing his hand over his heart for effect.
"No cursing around the baby!"
"Oh, shit, sorry!"
"You did it again!" I giggled, and EJ joined in with another loud cry. Deciding that movement would help quiet his cries, I got up to pace the length of the living room.
"Okay, okay…let's think. We've got to get this little guy calmed down." Edward frowned, staring at EJ as if he could read his mind and find out exactly what was going through his baby-brain. "What haven't we tried?"
I thought for a moment. "Renee said that taking me for a ride in the car always put me to sleep," I suggested. "And I'm sure there will still be lots of Christmas lights for us to see. We used to go every year."
"Oh, yeah! My birth mom used to take me, too." He started out with a huge, happy smile, but by the time he finished the sentence, his expression had grown incredibly bittersweet.
"Did she?" My voice was soft, tentative. I wanted to hear more – Edward didn't talk about his birth mother often, but I always felt incredibly close to him when he did choose to let some of those memories out.
"Every year," he said, his expression easing into a soft smile. "Esme did it too. She…ah…" He paused, swallowing thickly and looking at me in something akin to panic. But it was gone in an instant, replaced with another smile as he got to his feet and grabbed EJ's carseat…thing. I still didn't know what to call it; I knew how to work it, and that's all that mattered.
"She took Emmett and Alice. I wouldn't go until a couple of years after I went to live with them." With a short, wistful laugh, he explained. "I thought Elizabeth wouldn't want me doing 'our' thing with anyone else. But Esme helped me to realize that my mom would just want me to do the things I enjoyed."
"Esme knows her stuff," I murmured, following him to the mudroom. He set the carrier on the counter, steadying it while I settled EJ safely inside. "She's a really wonderful lady."
"She is," he agreed with a half smile. His expression faded to somber intensity in a matter of moments. "And so are you."
I huffed out a nervous laugh, busying myself with tugging on EJ's tiny little coat and miniature beanie.
"You are," he insisted, placing his hand over my fidgeting ones to still them. "You made me happy when I didn't really realize how unhappy I'd been. I jumped in feet first that night at the restaurant and I never looked back. And I think it's great to be passing on this tradition with you." He kissed the top of my head and then slipped on his jacket. "I'm going to start the car; let it warm up a bit. I'll be back."
I felt like such a stupid ass for not saying anything in return. But what the hell was I supposed to do when he said things like that?
"What the heck am I supposed to say to that? I asked EJ, who just blinked at me and waved his little arms in the air. When he was buckled in tightly, I grabbed him from his perch and started for the driveway. Edward met me at the back door, and all I could think of was how much I loved him and how special he was to me.
"Me too, Edward. You make me happy, too."
The smile we shared was secret and soft as we made our way to the car in our little parade of suburbia – man, woman and baby, out for a Sunday drive to see the Christmas lights one last time before they were put away for the new year.
Or, in other words, out to drive by people's homes at a stalker-slow pace, generally unnerving both the passengers in the car and any residents of those previously mentioned decorated homes.
My mother and I had been stalking Christmas lights since before I could remember. She'd always told me it began when I was only a few months old and wouldn't go to sleep. The car had been a guaranteed method of anesthesia for baby Bella. When I was a kid, I'd loved to look at the lights. So we'd kept up a little tradition over the years: we'd always go for at least one nighttime drive to see Christmas lights.
As I'd gotten older the tradition had become mortifying, as I actually knew who lived in some of those houses and had to face them daily at school. During those years, I'd worn my darkest hoodie, hood up, and slumped as far down in the seat as I could manage.
And here we were, passing on the tradition so we too could eventually embarrass children with this silliness.
It was our last-ditch effort. I was exhausted, and I knew Edward wasn't much better. It was New Year's Eve, but I couldn't care less about dropping balls.
Speak for yourself, Bella! We always care about balls.
I quickly subdued them with my most recent threatening daydream, where I trussed them up with ball-gags just like Ving Rhames did to Bruce Willis in Pulp Fiction. And to leave them with something extra terrifying, I promised to bring in the Gimp if they misbehaved.
Taking a page from Ren and Stimpy, they stuck their fingers into their navels until they were sucked inside to visit Jerry the Bellybutton Elf. I mentally dusted my hands with a contented sigh as we finished securing the infant-seat in the back of the car.
"I'll sit back here with him," I whispered, not wanting to make any unnecessary noise to upset EJ.
"So I'm driving Miss Daisy?" he asked with a smirk as he handed me the diaper bag.
I quirked an eyebrow at him. "I don't believe Miss Daisy and Hoke ever had sexual relations." My Southern Belle was improving. I frowned suddenly. "That's an awful mental picture."
"Bella," he laughed, shaking his head and quietly shutting the door after making sure no limbs were hanging out. When he slid behind the wheel, he continued, still trying to rein in his mirth. "After over a year and a half, I still never know what's going to come out of your mouth." His eyes met mine in the rearview mirror, filled with joy and pride and…the tractor beam.
EJ fussed for the first fifteen minutes of the drive. I read from his favorite book until the deliberately soothing cadence of my voice and the motion of the car lulled him to sleep.
"I think he's finally out," I whispered to Edward, leaning forward between the front seats so I wouldn't wake the baby.
"Can you climb up here and sit with me at the next stop sign?"
"No, I have no interest in accidentally kicking EJ out of his carrier or knocking my head against the windshield," I said with a smile.
"But it's my turn for your attention now," he wheedled, and I could see his smirk in the rearview mirror. He sighed. "Fine, just get out and pretend you're doing a Chinese Fire Drill." Ever the bargainer, that one. It really was sickening, the things he could get me to do.
"What if EJ wakes up?"
"That's why you should climb over the console."
Well, shit. Why does he have to have a credible reason for me to do something that could result in me causing a car accident?
"Bella, I'll be completely stopped," he said and immediately began slowing down at a four-way stop, turning to look at me after he put the car in park. Of course, I fell for it. He'd only gotten better at reading me in our time together, not to mention that he'd had my number from the moment we met. He knew exactly what would work on me.
"Dammit," I said under my breath as he stretched out his hand to help me. "I swear you could sell me my own mother." And he knew I would rather be duct taped to a chair and forced to watch A.I. for twenty-four hours straight than willingly pay for more of Renee.
No, maybe I wouldn't go that far…A.I. was horrible. Almost as bad as Eyes Wide Shut.
I wasn't knocking Kubrick's genius, but Tom Cruise's ick factor in that thing was excruciating. Every time I saw a clip, everything I'd eaten that day tried to punch its way out of my stomach.
In fact, even thinking of Crazy Cruise caused my forward progress to falter, and I caught the toe of my boot on the console just as I thought I was going to make it to the front seat without any incident. I tumbled forward with a squeak (I was still determined not to wake EJ), my face heading for a not-so-friendly meeting with something hard and plastic. Thank goodness Edward always expected the worst of my coordination. He caught me just in time, saving me from taking a bite out of the dashboard.
"I thought you were going to make it that time," he said after I got settled in, smothering a laugh as I snapped my seatbelt into place. I gave him a dirty look and growled as he smoothly shifted the car back into drive and pulled away.
"Glad I still entertain you," I returned with saccharine sweetness. Then I flipped him off.
"Hey, watch it. There are impressionable minds in this car." He jerked his head back toward the baby, who was now sleeping soundly – for the moment.
"He's sleeping," I whispered, giving him an exasperated smile.
"I meant me," he said innocently.
"Oh, whatever. You have the mind of a thirteen year old."
"So do you," he shot back, flipping on the radio so music filtered softly through the otherwise calm silence in the car.
"That's neither here nor there. You love it." I poked him in the thigh and then left my hand on his leg.
"I love you. No matter your mental age."
"You say the sweetest things," I sighed. We shared another tiny, secret smile and I reached into my bag for my phone, scrolling through my playlists.
"I doubt there is anything appropriate for virgin ears on that thing."
"I guess my "Let's Get It On" playlist isn't very appropriate." I pretended to snap my fingers in disappointment. "Foiled again."
In the back of my mind, I heard the girls quietly humming along with Marvin Gaye.
"I have an idea," he said happily, searching the stations until he stopped on the genre I least wanted to hear.
"Edward!" I whined, covering my ears. "No more Christmas music!"
"Come on, Bella! We're just keeping in the spirit of the season…" God, he was so fucking aggravating sometimes. I dropped my hands to my lap and pouted, reciting the Preamble to the Constitution just to keep those damn catchy lyrics out of my head.
"You know this song gets stuck in my head for weeks! I just got it out of there after Alice made me listen to it over Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving, Edward. I've been tortured for a whole month and now you're going to do it again!"
He covered my mouth with his hand. I hadn't realized my voice was creeping above whisper-level as I went on with my diatribe.
"Bella, love, it's over already. You ranted all the way through it."
Listening carefully, I heard the DJ reading a station break and sighed in relief. Edward still hadn't removed his hand, so I nipped his fingers. The look I got for that was scorching. I shrugged, a cheeky little grin fixed firmly on my lips when he dropped his hand. He gave me the panty-incinerating smirk and focused on the road.
Is it hot in here?
"…So take off all your clothes," the girls sang.
Fucking Nelly? Oh, no, this has to stop.
I brought out the Gimp.
Settling back into my seat, I closed my eyes for a bit, enjoying the smooth ride. When the light, soothing tones of Pachelbel's Canon in D began to filter through the speakers, chills swept over my skin and my eyes popped open, immediately meeting Edward's. I looked around, noticing we were in the driveway. I had no idea we were even close to the house.
Edward's eyes were warm and loving, the jewel-green of his irises glinting in the dim light from the Christmas lights.
"This is Christmas music?" I asked, my voice thickening with emotion.
"It is," he answered, putting the car in park but making no motion to cut the ignition.
"I had no idea," I managed, barely able to speak through the happy knot in my throat.
He unfastened his seatbelt, leaning over to do the same for me, kissing my forehead as he did so. He linked our left hands together, and I leaned my head on his shoulder.
"Did you know that when you suggested it last August?" I asked, still wrapped in a blanket of warmth from the inside out, inspired by music and the most special memories of my life.
"I did. I couldn't think of a better piece of music." He sighed softly, the soft gust of his breath ruffling the strands of hair at my temple. "It's about celebrating your most precious gift. And that's what you are to me," he added in a barely-there whisper. I couldn't stand it. I couldn't even speak. So I jerked back, grabbing fistfuls of his shirt, pulling him to me with all my might. I kissed him hard, hoping that my actions would speak where my words failed me. When I pulled away, he was already smiling, his lips perfect and crooked and completely mine. I searched his face, my eyes darting back and forth as I still searched for something remotely worthy to say to him.
"It's okay, Bella. I know." I let out a choked laugh, swallowing hard. "Come on, let's get this guy inside."
Edward handled putting EJ in his crib while I went to get ready for bed. I kept an eye on the clock, not wanting to miss the arrival of the new year now that EJ was down for the night. Sure, there were only two of us that could participate in the countdown, but my one and only midnight make-out partner was the only one I needed.
God, I needed something warm to sleep in. Our window was cracked open to the night, cool air spilling into the room in gentle currents. I rooted through my things until I found exactly what I needed.
Leaving my clothes in a heap on the cold tile floor in the bathroom, I pulled the soft, white chenille over my head, straightened the long sleeves and tugged the sweater to mid-thigh. Finishing up in the bathroom, I pulled on a pair of brightly-colored chenille socks to warm my icy toes before heading out into the bedroom and coming face to face with a slack-jawed Edward. He looked extremely lickable in a pair of ugly green-flannel pajama pants and nothing else, his bare toes peeking out of the bottoms.
Alice had drawn my name in the pajama exchange this year, and when I'd first laid eyes on the sweater, I had my doubts. I'd wondered aloud why the hell someone would sleep in a sweater, but the only thing she would say was "Believe me, you will love this. Trust me." She'd even winked at me. I didn't even want to take a guess in which direction she was going with that.
Well, I certainly knew now.
"Is EJ okay? He didn't wake up, did he?"
"No," he said, soundlessly at first, then repeating himself with more determination. "No, he was out like a light. The car ride really worked."
"I told you – the modern automobile is baby anesthesia." I grinned at him, giving myself an exaggerated pat on the back.
His eyes raked up and down my body as he set the spare handset for the baby monitor on the nightstand, clearing his throat nervously.
"That's…ah… " He took a few steps toward me and paused, a really adorable little scowl firmly in place over his brow. Trying again, he said, "But it's bedtime. Ah…that is…" Stuck once again, he blew out a short, annoyed breath before his jaw set and he strode forward. Only pausing when he stood directly in front of me, he curled his fingers around my waist. His thumb grazed my side in one slow sweep as he squeezed lightly, his gaze darkening to the deep, murky green of a winter squall just off the Sound as he stared at his hand against the creamy winter white. His normally pale skin was kissed with a hint of sun from the past few days, creating a delicious visual contrast that seemed to perfectly express the sheer… rightness I'd felt from the very beginning with Edward.
Oh, it wasn't perfect; we weren't perfect, but we were right. We complemented each other, and becoming a couple had made us happier than we'd ever been before.
He finally raised his eyes to mine, a hint of a bewildered smile flirting with his lips as his fingertips pulled lightly at my waist, gently urging me to inch forward.
"Is that a sweater? Or a…nightgown…thing?" The sheer disgust that crossed his face as he had to say "nightgown" was laughable. Edward didn't like to say the names of any kind of unmentionables, aside from making fun of my granny panties. It was something only I knew about him.
Leaning up on the tips of my toes, I pressed my lips to the hollow of his throat. "Both." I had to muffle my laugh against his neck, giving myself away. "I got it at this year's pajama exchange. Alice," I explained.
"You're going to sleep in that?" he prodded, a full-fledged grin taking over his face. I nodded, returning his goofy smile. "That's…Christ, that's got to be the sexiest thing I've ever seen – and everything is covered up!" He ran his hand up and down my side, intently watching the motion and swallowing hard. He sidled a little closer to me. "All covered up, but definitely not invisible. Perfect."
"Alice will be happy to hear it," I laughed. "I doubted her."
"Shh! Stop talking about my sister," he murmured, wrapping his other arm around me and walking backwards toward the bed. I smirked at him as he spoke to me like I was a child. "We don't talk about things that give us nightmares right before we get in bed." With that, we reached the mattress and he fell straight back, pulling me with him to sprawl across the huge California king.
Sighing heavily, I relaxed against him, my body melting fluidly on top of his. "I'm exhausted."
He made a sound of disapproval and dragged his fingertips down until they dipped just under the hem of the sweater.
"Are you sure I can't persuade you?" He ended the question with an almost imperceptible arch of his hips, sparking the raw need and magnetic chemistry that was never far below the surface.
"'Persuade me' to what?"
"To stay awake a little longer." His fingers rubbed a soft, random path high on my outer thighs. He angled his head so that his lips were in my hair, his even breaths warming my temple. I marveled that something so simple as shared body heat could feel so good, so natural and comforting when you were with the right person.
"We have to stay up anyway; it's still New Year's Eve, even if we're celebrating at home alone," I mumbled into his shoulder, stifling a yawn in the process.
"Not quite alone," he softly whispered. "Have you forgotten about you-know-who?"
"I mean we're essentially alone in that we can only hold an adult conversation with one another." His chest shook with laughter and I got a little impatient with him. "You know what I mean," I huffed, which only prompted him to laugh aloud. He ran a palm slowly up the back of the soft, nubby sweater, molding the material to my body.
"I do know." His other arm joined the first, hooking his fingers under my arms and easily pulling me up until my face was above his. I tucked my forearms up against my body, curling my hands around his shoulders for balance as his hips met mine in another barely-there arch of his back. Bracketing my hips in a tight grip, he held me against him and shifted into me again.
Giving in, I whispered, "Are you sure we have enough time?" Though to be honest, we were both likely past the point of no return.
"Positive," he returned quickly, his voice raspy and deep. "We have the monitor right here anyway." He raised his head until our lips met, at which point I promptly forgot any thoughts that didn't center on the man below me.
Even though he was in a submissive position, lying below me, he controlled the kiss. I gladly followed, hardly noticing as he fisted his hands in the material at my hips and pulled upward, stopping long enough for me to sit up so he could strip the sweater over my head and toss it to the floor before peeling the warm socks from my feet. He was momentarily surprised to see that I wore nothing else. My response was to back away from his hips and hook my fingers in the waistband of his pants, loosening the drawstring and tugging them down until he could kick them off. I didn't wait long before leaning forward to grip him in my hand, my trembling fingers wrapping around soft, hot skin. He reached out quickly and pulled my mouth back to his, licking and nibbling at my lips. I squirmed against him, trapping my arm in between us, his cock still wrapped in my fist. Sweeping my thumb back and forth over the head, I savored the rough groan that tickled warmly over my lips in response.
"You have to stop that," he breathed, reaching down to gently grasp my wrist. "I don't want to cum in your hand." His tone was deep and serious as his eyes held me frozen. He lifted my wrist to his lips, then rested it against his chest.
Suddenly I was flat on my back with Edward's tall frame pressing me into the mattress. One arm was threaded under my left shoulder, his palm fisting in the sheets right next to my head as he supported his weight on one elbow.
"I want to be in you," came the gravelly whisper, followed by a lush lick over my collarbone.
"Then be in me." It was more breath than sound, but more meaningful than the words themselves. Seconds later, his hand was between my legs, two fingers slipping easily past my lips as his thumb swirled an insistent path over my clit.
A pained moan forced its way from his throat. "Nothing feels better than you do right here."
Clinging to him, I curled one leg around his hip to give him better access and he delved deeper, curving his fingers just…so…perfectly. Not quite sure how he'd gotten me there so quickly, I found myself ready to explode at just the right touch. His teeth lightly closed where my neck met my shoulder and I was gone, moaning out loud as I clenched around his fingers.
"That's it, Bella. I'm going to make you feel so fucking good," he vowed in a low, gritty whisper.
He spun out my pleasure with gentle strokes of his hand, until I was raising my hips toward his once again. I sucked in a breath to beg him to take me already, but he leaned down for a kiss, sliding his tongue over mine as he pressed forward confidently, filling me up, not pausing to give me a chance to adjust to the delicious burning stretch of that first penetration. It was always at this very moment that I felt truly his, in that one moment of perfect trust as I accepted him.
He wasn't rough, but he wasn't exactly gentle, his fingertips gripping with an extra firmness and his hips grinding into mine with definite power. Angling his body so his pubic bone slid directly over my slick flesh, he spread his free hand right at the top of my thigh, pulling it up higher against his side. I hooked my other leg around his, resting my heel at the back of his knee.
His hand wandered away from my hip, up and over my ribs to close over a breast, squeezing firmly before brushing his palm over my nipple. Tingling warmth grew to a steady, nearly painful burn as he pinched the tender flesh between his fingers. Then the pressure was gone and he flicked his thumb against my now unbearably sensitive nipple, using a hint of short fingernail. A shot of heat flew straight to my clit, causing my hips to jerk sharply against his. He grunted softly against my mouth, increasing his pace, winding me so tightly that I was already hovering, ready for him to melt my brain all over again.
His lips dropped to my ear as I fisted both hands in the hair at the back of his head.
"God, you feel fucking amazing," he breathed, his words dissolving into a groan as I came again, my orgasm sending him headlong into his own release. He slumped against me, our breath coming in matching, harsh pants. Sweat dampened our skin, weakly gluing us together – something I'd never thought could be pleasant. But with Edward, I couldn't bring myself to care about sweat. I'd lie there with him forever.
The only reason I got up this time was to avoid an even bigger mess later. I was afraid even that kind of mess wouldn't be so bad – as long as it was Edward's mess.
When I came back into the bedroom, I heard EJ crying. The sound was very faint, the sound dampened by the walls. The monitor wasn't picking up his cries, but I could still hear him.
"What's going on? The monitor's not working, but I hear EJ!" I asked, trying to keep my voice relatively quiet as I scrambled to put the long sweater back on, my hair crackling with static when I managed to get my head through the neck. "Shit!"
"We'll just go get him," Edward said calmly, tugging on his pants and guiding me to the bedroom door. I burst into the hall and rushed to the baby's room, throwing the door open and freezing in my tracks. Edward stopped short at my back, both of us sucking in startled breaths when we spotted Rose in the rocking chair, cradling a now quiet EJ. Emmett stood behind her, gazing down at the two of them sappily. Emmett "The Grizzly" Cullen had been reduced to a stuffed animal.
Half of me wanted to point and laugh, while the other half wanted nothing more than to see that look on Edward's face. When I thought of it that way, this evening's exhausting Home-Ec experiment just might have been worth it.
Oh, that can't have been my thought…for the love of God, the girls are like fucking cancer! They've metastasized to my brain…
Right. That's what I kept telling myself. I couldn't possibly be ready to pop one out, could I?
After a few moments, they noticed us standing in the doorway. Both of them choked back laughter and I thought Emmett was blushing. What the hell?
"Sleeping on the job?" Emmett snickered, gesturing to our less than company-appropriate attire.
"We uh…we didn't know you guys were back," I stuttered, nearly passing out from all the blood that rushed to heat my cheeks. The tips of my ears were so hot I could have sworn they were on fire.
"Yeah, we could tell," Emmett returned with a dramatic eyebrow waggle. Rose snickered behind her hand as he gestured to the sleeping baby. "So you guys had a good time, E?"
We nodded in unison, still afraid to use our voices.
"So you might go so far as to say it was fucking amazing?" he questioned. My heart stopped beating for a few seconds and I had to slap myself on the chest just to get it started again as I realized what Emmett was insinuating.
"You heard us?" Edward growled, taking a huge step in his brother's direction, but Emmett just held up his hands good-naturedly, laughing and shaking his head.
"Dude, you grabbed the wrong piece of the baby monitor when you were planning that little tryst with your fair Meat Girl. You left the handset with little Emmett Junior here and took the receiver into your den of love." Rose bent to put EJ in his crib before she woke him again by laughing. Emmett was grinning smugly at the two of us.
"Thanks for having a very…thorough…sex talk with my son," he snickered. "Now I won't have to do it later on."
"Oh, God," Edward groaned.
At the same time, I muttered, "Oh, shit." My ability to remain upright was in serious doubt and I grabbed Edward's hand, leaning heavily into his side and squeezing my eyes tightly shut. "I guess you won't be asking us to babysit again?" I had to admit, that might be the only thing that would make this mortification remotely worth it.
That's me, always looking for the silver lining.
"Oh, don't think you two will be getting out of it so easily," Rose laughed. "We had so much fun tonight that Em and I have decided that we're never letting you go back to Seattle… At least, we did before we came home and found you guys lying down on the job." She frowned for effect and turned to Meat Sweats. "What do you think?"
He scrunched up his face in thought before answering. "Nah, I think it's a good punishment for them. In fact, they should do it every night until they leave LA." His expression morphed into an evil grin that could easily rival Edward's. "In fact, they should move in with us! We'd have our very own nanny-couple!"
"Oh, Em, that's the best idea you've ever had!" Rose beamed at him, wrapping her arms around his neck.
"Oh, no…that's not going to happen. Taking care of EJ was a lot harder than we thought it would be," Edward rushed out, shaking his head rapidly. "If you guys wanted full-time babysitters, you shouldn't have moved to LA. Mom and Dad are still pissed at you for that, by the way."
Emmett scoffed, knowing Esme and Carlisle couldn't stay mad at him for long. They'd already visited three times in the three months since the move.
"Yeah," I agreed. "I almost dropped him a couple – no, dozens – of times." Okay, so I was embellishing, but we were in desperate need of help here. Edward began slowly backing out of the room, pulling me with him.
"You guys need the practice," Emmett called as we made it into the hallway. Edward and I shared a stricken look as we rushed to our room. "Nothing teaches you faster than hands-on experience! As much as you two get it on, it's only a matter of time!"
We slammed the door behind us, blocking out the terrifying words that followed from the baby's room.
"He doesn't know what he's talking about," we blurted in unison, slumping against the door. After a few minutes, I walked to the bed in a daze, falling flat on my face somewhere in the vicinity of the left side – my side. The errant thought made me smile into the comforter. I felt the mattress dip as he climbed in beside me, stretching out on his side as close as he could possibly get.
"Happy New Year." His hand followed the curve of my spine and paused at the base, simply resting there. I turned my head toward his, one cheek resting flat against the bed and he scooted down, bringing his face even with mine.
"What time is it?" I asked softly, inching closer to him as I closed my eyes.
"Almost one. Sorry, we're a bit late," he chuckled.
"We didn't get to kiss at midnight," I whined without thinking.
His laugh was full and rich this time. "Oh, yes you did. You got a lot more than a kiss."
"Well, if that first moment of 2011 is an indication of how we'll be spending the rest of the year, I'll be the luckiest woman on earth," I said, breathless with laughter. My cheeks flamed at the mere thought, the blush he always inspired still as strong as ever even a year and a half later.
"Let's just hope we aren't roped into watching our infant nephew every year," he mumbled.
"No, next year it will just be DD duty," I sighed, only half-joking. It was likely true. Edward groaned, drawing me closer to his side.
"You ended up with a real winner here, Bella. You're stuck with the guy who spends all the major drinking holidays either babysitting or acting as the Drunken Taxi."
Snapping my eyes open, I flicked him gently right in the middle of his forehead. "Hey. Eeyore. Put down the noose."
Letting out a bewildered laugh, he snagged my hand and brought my fingers to his lips. "God, your violence turns me on. What's happened to me? When did I become such a masochist?"
"You are a winner, Edward. I mean, you have me, right?"
His smile was brilliant and perfect and crooked, but there was tightness in his expression that only I could have noticed. Oh, for Christ's sake, Bella! Stop it with the super-lame jokes already! Despite his sometimes excessive self-confidence in other arenas, he still occasionally let Emo Edward make an appearance for old time's sake.
I blew out a short, harsh breath, searching for the right way to explain. "Hey," I called softly, waiting until he met my eyes before continuing. "I'm the winner, because I have you. You make me so fucking happy, Edward. Only you can do that for me. I just want to do the same for you." My voice had grown thick with tears, but I blinked back the wet traces of my conviction, only wanting to appear strong for him.
"You do," he said gravely. "Never doubt it.*"
We had crept toward each other without noticing, and now we were clasped together on our sides, my face buried in his neck.
"I don't." The tremor that ran through his body at my whispered answer triggered a rush of gooseflesh across my back.
"Good," he whispered. "Someone up there must like me, or I wouldn't have you. And I'm too fucking stubborn to give you up, so I have no choice but to believe I deserve you." Beaming, I looked up, wanting to see his face, but I caught him frowning. "Wait, that didn't sound right…" he thought aloud, not looking at me.
"It sounds perfect," I laughed, getting his attention once more. "We deserve each other." I openly smirked at him and he winked, knowing exactly what I meant.
"Who else would have us?"
I FOOLED YOU ALL!!! HAHAHAHA…don't kill me.
*I'm pretty sure Edward's "Never doubt it" line is from one of the books, but I'm too lazy right now to look it up. Just know it doesn't belong to me, 'kay?
So…Happy New Year, everyone! Hope you enjoyed this little bit of craziness. Sorry about the lack of the girls, but come on, Bella would be in the looney bin if they end up being motormouths for the rest of her life!
Now, I'm going to go out and get drunk while waiting for 2010. Thanks for reading!