"I really hate this blanket, Edward." Bella grumbled a bit, trying to disentangle herself from the heavy afghan between her body and mine. I kissed my way up to her jaw and back down while she struggled, trying to suppress a chuckle at her frustration. As soon as she was free, Bella pressed herself against my bare chest. I made a low growl and began kissing her lips with renewed fervor. She was so hot against me, and tonight she had worn one of those tank tops with hardly any material for straps, so I had the added pleasure of more of her skin bare against mine. Yet, it was not nearly enough.

In a few weeks we were getting married. One would think that, to a vampire who has lived more than one hundred years, a few weeks would seem like the blink of an eye. It felt like an eternity to me. I puffed up with pride every time I imagined myself introducing Bella as my wife. I would soon be able to do that for the rest of forever. I could not wait to be married.

Bella did not see things that way. As much as she wanted to be with me for eternity, the entire institution of marriage was repugnant to her. In fact, the only way she accepted the idea was with two concessions on my part: I had to be the one who would turn her into a vampire instead of Carlisle (against my better judgement), and we had to at least try to make love before she was turned (also, against my better judgement). So, as she put it, we were practicing. Every night since we had told Charlie of our engagement, I would work on my control issues by pushing the boundaries a little harder when we kissed.

At first, I worked on extending the length of time before I had to pull away. As amazing as kissing Bella was, I still felt the thirst blaze in my throat, knowing just how close I was to her blood, to really tasting that potent, delicious, addictive flavor on my tongue, quenching the thirst in me the way no other human's blood ever had. My brand of heroin. Even though I had lost the conscious desire for it since the twenty-four hours I spent believing Bella to be dead, the taste was forever burned into my memory, which meant this undying thirst, the monster inside of me, was even harder to tame.

Within the first two weeks of our attempts, I was able to kiss Bella continuously from the moment I got into bed with her until sunrise, pausing only long enough for Bella to regain her breath. As proud of my control as this made me, I still had many doubts, -many qualms about how far I would truly be able to go before my passion for her would make me forget myself. Before I hurt her without even realizing it.

Now we were focusing on the amount of contact I could bear while we kissed. For the last week, I had agreed to remove my shirt at some point each evening. The last two nights, Bella had insisted on doing this for me. She had no idea how sexy she was when she did that. Unfortunately, because of my icy skin, Bella was forced to wrap herself in a blanket to keep warm.

Bella always managed to worm her way out of it, as she had tonight. I would allow it for a few minutes, knowing exactly how badly she needed to feel my body pressed to hers because I felt like I needed it more than I needed blood. But, eventually, she would shiver from the cold, and I would wrap her back up again. So far, she was fine.

Her fingers were twined tightly in my hair, tugging at it gently, and one of her legs was hitched at my waist. I had my hand on that leg, holding the underside of Bella's thigh, pressing her to me. My other hand was equally tangled in her hair. Bella was mewling softly into my mouth. The way she was kissing me felt illegal.

Bella was practically devouring my lower lip, her mouth sucking tightly while her soft, unbearably hot tongue slashed at it until I could not see straight. I never allowed this kind of behavior, but obviously she was trying to push my limits. It was torture of the sweetest kind: my mind was swimming with imagining how many times more pleasurable it would be to have her doing this while I was buried inside of her. At the same time, what few rational brain cells I had left were screaming at me that I was too close to losing control. I needed to stop before I allowed her to go too far.

I tried to pull back, just a little bit, so we could both catch our breath. My breathing was ragged, shallow, and would technically be considered hyperventilation. Bella's was practically the same, which gave me the perfect logic for trying to pull away when I really did not want to. Instead of complying, Bella pulled herself closer and somehow trapped my tongue in her mouth. Because I was in shock, I didn't react fast enough to pull back and stop her before she started sucking on my tongue as hard as she could.

For a moment, I went wild. I growled possessively: she was mine. My fingers tugged almost roughly at Bella's hair, and the hand that was at her thigh hitched her leg up sharply until I felt the ultimate source of Bella's heat pressed tightly to what was now a painful erection. I heard Bella gasp wildly. I felt her tremble.

Five-eighths of a second later, I was clear on the other side of the room, my jaw set tightly as I tried to reign myself back in. Bella was gulping in air, her heartbeat erratic, practically as loud as if I had my ear to her chest.

My entire body felt electric, heated as though my veins had molten fire flowing in them. I could still feel the memory of Bella's mouth. I felt like all my sensory attention was focused on my tongue, begging me to forget my control, to go right back into that bed and claim what was mine by force. I realized I could still feel the residual heat of her branded into my straining length. I imagined how much more intense the heat would have been if our clothing hadn't been in the way. I ground my teeth, trying to push that thought away. It wasn't helping.

"Edward?" Bella's voice was small, but ragged with desire. I closed my eyes tightly, afraid looking at her would shock me with a new stab of lust that I may not be able to control. As though the scent of her arousal was not already making it hard enough.

"Give me a moment, Bella."

As soon as I had gotten the words out, I allowed myself to stop breathing, clearing my head of that mouthwatering scent created from her blood pumping with her adrenaline and the waves of arousal coming off of her. I swallowed back the venom that was pooling in my mouth.

Bella was fidgetting nervously with her blanket by the time I realized I was under control. I took in a deep, slow breath, making me hesitate for one second before returning to her because her arousal was still the most potent scent in the air. But, I could not ignore the facts as I sat back down next to her on the bed.

"I am so sorry that I frightened you, Bella," I whispered, touching her cheekbone delicately.

"I will not allow myself to lose control like that again."

"Frighten me?" Bella asked. She looked utterly confused.

"What are you talking about? I wasn't afraid of you, Edward."

Now, I was confused.

"My behavior a moment ago was out of line," I tried to give her a pointed look to remind Bella, but I knew that my eyes were black with desire instead.

"I could not help it though, you were... you had my tongue in your mouth."

Bella's blush was lovely, inviting. My nostrils flared a bit at the new wave of arousal coming off of her. I could not allow myself to get sidetracked by it though. Not when the memory of her trembling against me and the way she gasped were obvious signs that my forceful passion had scared her.

"I wasn't frightened by that, Edward," Bella mumbled. She dropped her head a bit in obvious embarrassment.

I had not frightened her? Impossible. She knew I was aware of her reactions. Plus, Bella was a terrible liar. Yet she showed no signs of purgory.

"You were shaking, Bella. Your adrenaline was out of control."

I was not sure if I was trying to convince her or myself at this point. If she had not been frightened, her reactions could only mean...

"It turned me on."

I barely registered that Bella had actually said the words. I was too busy listening to the monster snarling in triumph.

She liked the idea of being taken by force; it had aroused her. I was suddenly just as painfully hard as I had been when my tongue had been in her mouth.

I lifted Bella's chin gingerly to examine her expression. Her liquid brown eyes were a torrent of embarrassment, desire, and the smallest hint of sadness.

"What are you thinking, Bella?" I had to know. I could not explain the sadness that bordered on longing in her eyes.

"I'm thinking that you're angry at me for pushing you too far," she said. "And more angry that I liked what happened when you did. I'm thinking that you're going to say that we should stop." The longing and desire flared in Bella's eyes.

"I thought you knew that I could never be angry with you, love," I kissed Bella's forehead gently.

"But, I do think that we should stop for the evening."

The pout on Bella's face was utterly adorable, yet heartbreaking at the same time. Her kiss-swollen lips accentuated the effect. I hated upsetting her, but I knew my instinct, my outright need, to continue despite coming so close to losing control, was a blantant indicator that we should stop pushing our luck for the evening. I picked up my shirt and put it back on.

"I promise I won't do that again if we don't stop. I promise," Bella's voice was hopeful, but her face was not.

"Sleep, my Bella," I chuckled, giving her a chaste kiss, which I pulled away from before she could tangle her fingers in my hair again, and before I could allow myself to want more.

"We'll try again tomorrow night."

Bella grumbled, but complied as I tucked her in, laying next to her beneath the sheets.

Within five minutes of humming Bella's lullaby, she was sleeping deeply. I chuckled quietly again. She hardly slept more than a few hours because of our attempts. She was letting her desires take precedent over her need for sleep. It was amusing to me how insistant her hormones really were.

I ran my fingers as lightly as I could down the arc of Bella's jaw, then down the silky skin of her throat. I loved the skin here; it was more delicate and always a few degrees warmer than most of her body.

Bella let out a pleasurable sigh in her sleep, making me smile. I wondered whether she was dreaming of me, but I knew I would find out eventually. Her sleep talking was the only outlet I had for knowing her thoughts. She had no way to edit her dreams, and could not be embarrassed about what she was saying until after long after she had already spoken the words. Until I could hear her thoughts as I did others, I relished these small glimpses into her mind the way I had never thought to enjoy another's thoughts.

My fingers hesitated at the hollow of Bella's throat. For the last week, I had continued pushing myself by running my fingers over the lines of Bella's body while she slept. I felt horribly about not telling Bella of my plan, but I knew that if I had brought the subject up, she would beg to be allowed to be awake while I did this. Having her awake would have instantly destroyed both her control and mine. She would not have allowed me to stop when I needed to. While she slept I could stop the moment I felt my control about to splinter.

Slowly, ever so slowly, my fingers descended, tracing the curve of each collarbone before dipping into the valley between her breasts, then lower to her stomach. I refused to believe that I was in any way ready to do this on her bare skin: I was merely trailing my fingers across the fabric of her tank top, yet my breathing was ridiculously ragged. I made the circuit from her stomach to the valley of her breasts a few times until my breathing was more controlled. It was time for the next challenge.

My breath caught as I allowed my fingers to graze Bella's left breast, then the right. I looked up to see her biting her lip in her sleep. I bit back a sardonic laugh. It was as though she was unconsciously as nervous about this as I was.

By the time I looked back to her breasts, Bella's nipples were painfully obvious through her shirt. I did not even notice that my hand had moved until my first finger, just the tip, had begun circling her right nipple.

I told myself to stop, but my hand would not listen.

Bella shivered a bit, my name barely escaping her lips. I was instantly slammed with a hundred emotions at once. The strongest were love, fear, and lustful curiosity. My curiosity won.

I began to use two fingers to circle the tight point of Bella's nipple, occassionally brushing over it directly. Bella was gasping, trembling, even making noises that would have been loud cries of pleasure were she awake. It was obvious that my actions were affecting what Bella was dreaming about. My automatic reaction was to pull back; Bella's imagination was more wildly out of hand than her waking attempts to push me. Then again, my own imagination was practically feral at this point, trying to picture Bella's dream in my mind.

I had developed a secondary automated response since Bella had come in my life, however. Any time I thought not to be near her, not to touch her, I would unthinkingly attempt to make some excuse for why it would be justifyable to stay anyway. Tonight was no exception.

Bella had a right to allow her dreams of me to be more physical, more intimate, than I was able to be in her waking world. She deserved to have a Dream-Edward without these torturous boundaries. I shook off a wave of remorse and continued to aid her imagination.

I took a deep breath and began giving Bella's left breast the same attentions I had given to the right, only I did not have the willpower to to be as hesitant as I had been. I circled her nipple with just a bit more pressure, using two fingertips, and occassionally let my fingers or thumb run directly over the tightened bud.

Bella was moaning almost constantly now, her cries clearer, more lucid, despite the fact that she was completely unconscious. That mixture of curiosity and lust came back with renewed intensity, and I held my breath in anticipation was I allowed myself to take another chain of control off.

I pinched her nipple lightly. Bella groaned and wrapped herself around me in almost the same second. My hand was trapped, my thumb and forefinger still pinching lightly. I could have easily escaped, but I could not bring myself to do so.

Bella had positioned herself so that her unbearable, fantastic, painful, pleasurable, undeniable heat was pressed tightly to me again. It was like lying on my stomach with my erection pressed against hot coals that somehow burned excruciating pleasure instead of pain. This pain felt incredible.

"Please... please, please..." Bella was pleading, whispering insistantly in my ear. Her fingers were tight in my hair, pushing me closer to her. I took in a shaky breath, lost in the scent of Bella's arousal. God, I would not be able to resist this temptation.

"Please, Edward," Bella's whispers were barely audible through her loud gasps. "I need you... lower..."

I did not have the time to gasp in shock before she writhed and then pushed her hips against me forcefully. Against the most painful erection I had ever experienced.

In an instant, I was on the other side of the room, and every fiber of my being screamed at me to get back into Bella's bed. I wanted to take her in my arms and end both our frustration.

I hardly registered the little, tiger-kitten growl Bella made as she realized that she had merely been dreaming. I looked over at her to find her face full of confusion.

"Why did you move?" Bella asked, her voice sleepy. She pouted a little, her lips still slightly swollen from kissing me earlier. Her arms stretched toward me, beckoning me to return to her side. Of course Bella would not care that my eyes were blazing with my struggle for control. Would she never respond correctly to the monster I was?

Cautiously, I allowed myself to walk back to her, being slow, even by human standards. It gave me a few more seconds to compose myself before I sat down and put my arms around Bella's waist.

"I sort of had to, love," I took in a deep breath, ragged, as I was taken with my memory: her scent, the uncontrollable lust pouding through my veins, all felt as strongly as if it were happening again. I remembered the earlier portion of my exploration of Bella's body, and her reactions.

"You were very active in your dreaming." I felt a smug pride at the knowledge that I had helped her along as I spoke.

Enjoy that, I thought. It will be weeks before you feel anything like it again. I had decided that my explorations were going too far; I had decided to end them.

Bella gasped, horrified with knowing exactly what her dream had been about. She blushed a deep crimson before burying her face in my shoulder.

"What did I say?" she mumbled into my neck, her hot breath rushing over my icy skin. It felt amazing.

"My name, which would be fairly normal, but it was acoompanied with a... wide range of moans."

My smirk grew exponentially, and I knew she could hear it in my voice. Then my memory progressed, and I set my jaw against the force of it.

"However, it was more what you did than what you said."

I could feel Bella's face grow hotter with embarrassment, yet a fresh wave of arousal hit me along with it. She was remembering, too.

"What I did?" If I hadn't had my vampiric hearing, I would have missed her meek question. She pushed her face more tightly to me, trying to escape the embarrassment she felt. I cleared my throat, afraid my own voice would be just as weak.

"Yes, you... uhm... your hips," I shuddered slightly my own desire resurfacing as I spoke.

"You arched against me, Bella. With your hips. I couldn't... I had to move from the bed."

I had not wanted to, she needed to know that. It was impossible for Bella not to grasp the inference.

"It was far more enticing than the way you were kissing me earlier in the evening."

Bella lifted her head slowly to look in my eyes. She gasped a little, her heart skipping a beat, then galloping to at least twice its normal pace. I saw my reflection in her eyes, seeing that my own eyes were obsidian with desire. I shuddered without meaning to as another wave of arousal came from Bella. This was more intense somehow: much stronger -- hotter. I slowly realized that the look in my eyes had made her wet with arousal. My breathing was coming in gasps at the realization.

"You don't know how difficult it was for me. The way you were... You were right there, Bella." I explained, my voice low, hoarse.

Her heartbeat raced even faster, her breathing almost matching mine. I doubted she was actually getting much oxygen from the efforts.

I took a purposeful breath, gauging my reaction to the heady scent that radiated from Bella. I knew in that breath that I had to concede defeat. I was helpless against the actual hunger that scent elicited in me. My hunger to be inside of her; my drive to claim her.

"Your scent... it's more potent than your blood, love. I don't know if I can control myself any longer."

I felt a spark of fear as I spoke the words. Would I really be able to handle the unfathomably intense passion of truly being with Bella? As Bella looked into my eyes, my desire won. I wanted this too badly to allow myself to fail. She cupped my cheek with her hand, and I leaned gently into the pleasurable warmth of her skin. The smile on Bella's face was small, yet radient, lighting her face with hope, love, and determination.

"I trust you, Edward," she said, her voice steady with her conviction.

"You won't hurt me."

Bella had misunderstood which control I was afraid to give up. Her blood was no obstacle compared to the draw her arousal had.

"No, Bella. I meant that I don't think that I can restrain my desire to make love to you for much longer."

I felt like I had just confessed my greatest sin to her: the sin of wanting Bella as a normal man wants a woman.

Bella's heartbeat suddenly stopped in its tracks, then somehow sped even faster than it had been, spluttering irregularly. A new flood of her wetness assaulted me. Without my permission, my hands gripped Bella's hips, pulling her to me possessively.

"You smell..." I took another purposeful breath through my nose. "Intoxicating." That didn't even begin to describe it.

"I don't know if I can wait."

I barely noticed Bella shiver as my control broke. Within the space of a second, I was laying above her, kissing her with the furious lust that had built within me over the last few hours. Hovering over Bella like this instead of lying side-by-side was an altogether new experience, yet it seemed incredibly natural.

I pressed the hard lines of my body against Bella's soft curves, reveling in the slow heat that soaked through the fabric of our clothing and into my cold skin. I kissed Bella urgently, roughly by human standards, yet not forcefully enough to truly satiate a vampire's idea of rough kissing. She responded back in kind, though, using every ounce of force she could. I could not stop the growls I was making. Even though I could not be as reckless as I wanted, Bella had no problem doing so. It was an unexpected turn on.

Bella moaned into my mouth, further enflaming my own arousal. I growled a little more forcefully, glad Charlie was on a graveyard shift at the station as my growl resonated through Bella's room. Bella was sucking at my lip again, and I let a quiet moan of my own escape my lips. The only response I could give was to suck gently at her upper lip, focusing as much concentration as I had left on not getting her lip near my teeth.

I allowed the way I kissed Bella to be less restrained, more passionate than any kisses I had allowed thus far. I let my breath flow freely into Bella's mouth, knowing how intoxicating it was for her. Maybe then she would understand how irresistible the scent of her arousal was to me.

My hands were moving of their own volition, sliding down Bella's sides until they reached her hips. I held on and shifted her hips, angling them just a little higher... We both hissed. That sinful heat was all I could feel. I kissed my way to Bella's neck, trying to breathe more regularly so that I could speak.

"You're so impossibly warm," my voice sounded feral with desire. "I feel as though I'm on fire. I don't want to pull away, but I should."

I continued kissing my way down Bella's neck, to her throat. Bella had started shifting her hips, rubbing herself slowly against me. The friction had both of us moaning. I didn't even realize that my hands had started guiding her hips in their movements.

"I have to stop this, Bella, but I don't think that I can." I was desperate, hoping she would tell me to stop. Her request would be the only way I could stop.

"I don't want you to stop," Bella breathed, her hips never even hesitating in their delicious movements.

The need in Bella's voice mirrored my own. I would have been livid with myself for being so elated that she wanted me as unbearably as I wanted her. Assuming that I somehow could have been able to think straight with her rubbing against me this way.

"I feel like... like you aren't close enough," Bella gasped. I felt her tug slightly at my shirt. The next thing I registered was two loud rips and the feeling of fabric clutched in my hands. I had ripped my shirt off.

I had ripped Bella's shirt off.

I was speechless as I pulled back to look at Bella. I had never seen her without a shirt on. She was always wearing at least her sweats and tank top. Now I stared, captivated by her newly exposed form.

Bella was perfect. I ran my eyes over each inch of skin repeatedly. That creamy, pale skin was the same shade of ivory as the rest of her. She had no tan lines, just uninterrupted alabaster, save for the coral of her nipples.

"Are you alright, Edward?" Bella's question shook me from my reverie.

"You're beautiful, Bella. I don't deserve such beauty."

My voice was hoarse with reverence, love, and desire. I truly didn't deserve the angel in front of me. Surely a monster such as me could never be granted this perfect beauty, yet here she was: mine.

I came back to where Bella now sat on the bed, running my hands up and down her arms. They were the safest part of her exposed skin that I could touch right now.

Bella burst into unexpected laughter.

"I should be saying that to you," she explained, seeing my obvious confusion. She grinned as I rolled my eyes. She would never see herself clearly.

"Don't argue," Bella leaned in to kiss my throat gently. Her nipples, already tight with arousal, brushed against my bare skin by accident. I could feel them harden further at the contact as I froze in shock.

"Oops," Bella breathed her standard line for going too far. I was drowning in the scent of her arousal. All I could do was respond.

I crushed myself against Bella, laying her down, pressing myself, bare skin to bare skin, against her. The unadulterated pleasure of her heated skin was like nothing else I had experienced. I knew the only thing that could be better was smoldering beneath Bella's sweatpants.

In a feeble attempt to restrain myself, I had pinned my arms between the mattress and Bella's back. Pinned may not be a good word, considering that my hands were eagerly running over every inch of skin they could find. I gripped her shoulders, pressed her to me by the dip of her lower back, and ran my fingertips down her spine, reveling in the small shivers Bella made. Her silken skin broke out in goosebumps.

My lips descended on Bella's again, and I decided to take a risk: I slipped my tongue into her mouth without hesitation, caressing Bella's tongue. The wild gasp Bella made would have been enough to push me over the edge, but it was overshadowed as she pushed her hips forcefully into mine, her lips sucking at my tongue.

I lost my focus, my hands escaping their intended prison at Bella's back to her sides. I caught myself, only allowing my fingers to trace lazy patterns at the delicate skin there. I was being as gentle, as hesitant as I could in spite of my need to do so many more intimate, in some case, explicit, things with my hands. I was so in need of being able to make love to Bella that I was almost in pain. It was unbearable.

One of my fingertips reached up, touching the inviting swell at the side of Bella's breast. I swore silently at how much softer the skin here was than anywhere else I had touched. I needed to regain some control if I really wanted to do this, so I went to sit in Bella's rocking chair. I felt safe here, where I had spent so many nights lost in thought as I watched my Beloved Bella sleep.

Until I heard Bella gasp when she met my eyes, I had no idea how tense my entire body was, trying to fight against the urge to lay with her again.

"Edward, are you alright?"

Bella was breathless, her concern practically masked by desire and desperation. I wanted to laugh; it seemed she was under the misapprehension that I was going to abandon my need, my craving to push my limits to exactly where she wanted them. Bella had mistaken my look of determination as restraint.

"I'm fine, Bella," I should not have been so shocked to hear how hoarse my voice was.

"I just need to take a step back if I really intend to go further tonight."

The determination in my mind was unwavering, fueled by my desire and an instinct far more primal than my thirst. I suddenly got an idea that flashed smug pride into my mind.

"You intend to go further tonight?" The hopeful tone in Bella's voice was unmistakable.

I took in a slow, deep breath to steady myself before sitting back down on the bed. I made a promise to myself that this would be the last time I would get out of bed, it was the last time that Bella would be left confused and alone.

"Yes, as far as I can to make you content, my love," I chucked a bit as Bella's eyes lit up with obvious excitement. It was time to put that idea into play.

"But first, I need a diversion, if you don't mind."

I really hoped Bella would be able to do this for me. I knew she could deny me nothing if I dazzled her, but I was going to try to do this without coersion first.

"A diversion?" Her confused expression was adorable.

"Why? And what kind of diversion?"

I could not believe that she had not realized what I wanted to distract me.

"Well, the answer to why I need a diversion: purely so that I can regain my focus." That was true, but not my driving reason.

"As for what kind..." I could not help the crooked grin that flashed on my face. In fact, I thought I heard myself mentally laugh in excitement.

"I was wondering if you would tell me about that dream."

Bella's jaw dropped. This was going to be fun.

"Didn't you hear enough of it?" Bella croaked. Her blush was so intense that it had creeped down her neck.

"Yes," that was a lie. Now for the truth.

"But, I am very curious to know what I was doing to elicit such beautiful sounds to come from your lips."

I was excited, eager even. I had to know every detail. Where were we? How much of my actions translated into her dream?

Was it merely my hands she wanted lower?

"You really think that will help?"

Bella had an obvious concern about the idea, but then, she seemed to shrug it off. As though my lack of control mattered just as little to her as the fact that I was a vampire. I was too anxious to know what her dream was about to chastise her for not caring.

"I believe, at the very least, it will give me some ideas," My grin grew exponentially.

"Hopefully, having clear ideas will give me some focus."

Bella's heart went into doubletime again. I wasn't sure if she was purely remembering her dream or imagining me doing those very things to her now. She cleared her throat as I waited intently.

"We were in our meadow," Bella looked up at me through her lashes. She looked cautious, and a little embarrassed.

Our meadow. She had no idea how many times I had imagined making love to her in the daytime there; her dark hair would glint red in the sunlight as it splayed around her in the grass. The image of me penetrating her -- shimmering, cold marble enveloped in soft, wet velvet.

I shook the images off as best I could and smiled encouragingly at Bella.

"We were kissing," Bella had her own smile now, clearly caught up in her memory.

My thoughts shattered into a thousand different questions.

"Kissing? There must be more to it than that, Bella."

Much more than kissing. The only time I had ever gotten Bella to thrust her hips at me because of us kissing had been earlier tonight when I had allowed myself to ignore my better judgement. I cocked my head to the side, instantly curious.

"Unless, of course, I was kissing you with the same fervor and lack of control we both wish I could."

"There was definite fervor," Bella blushed again, ducking her head.

"But, also, we were... uhm..." She glanced down, first at my bare chest, then to her breasts. I followed her gaze, temporarily distracted.

"Wearing less than this," Bella's pink cheeks turned crimson with embarrassment. I felt a little embarrassed myself.

"How much less?" I asked, although I could have figured it out on my own. Even if Bella's eyes didn't flicker to the straining bulge in my slacks. I cleared my throat.

"Right, no clothes."

Bella ducked her head as she nodded. She looked torn amid her embarrassment, as though she did not know how to proceed. I felt the familiar frustration of wishing I could hear what she was thinking. It was time to use coersion. I lifted her head gently, begging her with my eyes.

"Please," I whispered, trying to use my best coersive voice, but falling short. My voice and my thoughts were too desire-ridden, too needy.

"I need to know what I was doing to make you cry out like that. You sounded impossibly irresistible"

It drove me insane to think I could not just hear her memory of the dream. The knowledge, the images of me touching her through her eyes seemed imperative. Bella swallowed purposely before continuing.

"Your lips, I mean your mouth was..." She bit her lip a little in hesitation, then looked to her breasts. My eyes automatically followed, focusing on the rapid rise and fall they made, the hard tightening of her nipples. My breath caught.

Instead of my fingers, she had imagined my mouth, my tongue at her breasts. The picture that made assaulted my mind. I could imagine the taste: salt, honey, and the hint of something floral. I could almost feel her pulse pounding erratically against my lips.

"And my hands," I whispered roughly, still staring intently at Bella's breasts.

"Were they unoccupied?"

"One of them was, uhm... on the opposite one," Bella hesitated, taking in a shaky breath. Her words were a rushed whisper as she continued.

"Your other hand was in my hair at first, but then it went considerably lower, and that's when I woke up."

Lower, she had said. She wanted me to touch her, to bring my fingers to the blazing heat between her legs. The heat that drew me in, liquid fire that was meant to have me buried within it. I had never wanted to do so more than I did at that moment.

"Lay down, Bella, I am ready to proceed." My hushed voice was rough with desire. I wasn't really ready, but I could not deny this yearning any longer.

Bella's eyes locked on mine as she laid down. I crawled slowly over her, feeling an electric sense of release at being above her. My body knew this was the first step toward something intangible, yet ultimately right.

I silently asked Bella for permission. She nodded, and I leaned in to kiss her.

It was a hesitant kiss at first, and I allowed myself to let it build slowly. I reveled in this kiss as though it was the intended act we were leading to. The kiss was passionate, lazy, and unfettered by restraint, yet controlled as I tangled one of my hands in Bella's hair. Bella moaned pleasurably in my mouth, and some of that control fell away.

My hesitant tongue had just started tracing her lips, but now I plunged it roughly into her mouth. All I could think about was how badly I needed her, how the sweet, mewling sounds she was making spurred me on. She arched her back, shuddering slightly as her breasts made contact with my chest. I shuddered back in response. She felt so good.

My hand, which had previously been at Bella's hip, trailed slowly up Bella's side, until my fingers reached directly under her left breast. Bella's breathing was just as ragged as my own. I kissed my way down her throat, shuddering slightly as Bella moaned my name. Her tone was blatantly pleading, as though she needed more from me. I still wasn't sure I could handle giving her more.

"Bella," I whispered against her neck, enjoying the way she shivered at the feel of my cool breath against her skin. I kissed lower, down to her collarbone, and hesitated before running the tip of my tongue over the curve of it. I let my fingers trace gentle patterns at the lower swell of Bella's left breast, comitting the silk of it to memory.

I ran the flat of my tongue back over her collarbone before kissing gently lower. Bella arched her hips, and I couldn't help the low groan that escaped my throat. I felt Bella tangle her fingers in my hair tightly.

I kissed the swell of Bella's right breast repeatedly, trying not to let a centimeter of the soft skin escape the touch of my lips. My hand grew bolder, cupping Bella's left breast. As I tested the weight of it in my hand, Bella arched her back slightly, and I couldn't wait any longer. My fingers and lips slid to both her nipples, barely grazing each. Bella cried out at just that slight contact.

I lost the small semblance of control I had been holding onto and let my lips close tightly around Bella's right nipple. I gasped against Bella's skin, overwhelmed by the new swell of arousal rising from her. It's effect was infinitely magnified by the sensation of her erratic pulse between my lips. I could not mistake it for fear anymore. She was aroused beyond reason, and I was the one doing this to her. I let a low, possessive growl vibrate my throat as my tongue licked insistantly at her nipple. My fingers were working of their own accord at Bella's left nipple, plucking rhythmically until each pinch became punctuated by Bella's sharp cries.

I suddenly became aware that the hand I'd had in Bella's hair was now running slowly down the flat of her stomach, my fingers dipping gently in the hollow of her navel. As I became more conscious of my actions, I moved even slower beyond her navel, knowing my goal now, and knowing how integral my goal was to the rest of our evening. I was scared.

I released Bella's nipple from my mouth, looking deeply into her eyes. We both stopped breathing.

"Bella," I wasn't sure if I was searching for reassurance or if I was using her name as a prayer for strength. Either way, I found all my answers in Bella's eyes.

"I love you, Edward."

That was all I needed to hear. I felt my love for her burn more strongly than it ever had as we smiled at one another. I leaned in, my lips only an inch from Bella's.

"As I love you," I whispered before kissing Bella with all the passion for her I had. My fingers began moving once more, slipping under the elastic waistband of Bella's sweats, then just a few inches lower to my goal. I hissed as I found it with ease.

I took in a shaky breath, my lips breaking contact with Bella's suddenly as I cursed as inaudibly as I could.

"I could never have imagined how blissfully hot you feel," I said, letting my fingers trace gently at the outer folds of Bella's scorching entrance.

Bella's hips shifted almost restlessly, and I watched the reactions she made as I gently memorized every part of her. I paid special attention to the way she would cry my name at each touch I gave to the bundle of nerves at the crown of her core. I could have been burned alive at that moment and not only would I have not even noticed, I would have died happy, because I was watching my love become lost in pleasure from my touch.

Eventually, Bella tried to tug me to her, obviously wanting to kiss me again. I wanted the same, wanted to press myself to her tightly, but there was something else I wanted more.

"No, my love, not yet," I chuckled. I felt myself position two fingers at exactly the right location. Even though I had never done this, my fingers seemed to know what they were doing. Bella gasped, anticipating my next move.

"I want to hear you." My fingers slid in effortlessly, eagerly. Bella's reaction was amazing.

She cried out, her entire back arching completely off the bed. Her hips snapped forward, pushing my fingers in even deeper. I let out my own strangled gasp; the intensity of her heat, her scent, was ridiculously intoxicating. She felt like liquid velvet around my fingers, and her heated muscles clamped down on me so tightly that if I had been human, it probably would have hurt a little. It drove me wild.

I crushed my lips back down to Bella's, my fingers moving rhythmically within her. After a few strokes, I took note of the fact that she made a particularly loud cry at a specific angle I had found. Since we were kissing, she didn't notice the way my eyebrow arched curiously, and I kept my fingers at that angle. Bella's cries increased in volume with each inward thrust of my fingers on that same spot. Each cry made my breathing more ragged. The feel of her around my fingers made it all too easy to imagine that same consuming heat wrapped around every inch of my manhood.

Bella's mouth broke from mine, but I barely noticed. My eyes were closed in concentration on both my movements and my fantasy. I didn't even notice that my hips had started moving in time with my fingers until Bella gripped them tightly, and tugged them to her roughly. I snarled at the way my hips moved, my fingers thrusting back in kind. I heard Bella yell, and it only fueled my passion. I felt her pull me to her several more times, and I didn't disappoint with the way I moved my fingers. Even when she stopped guiding my hips, I continued the sharp, deep thrusts within her, snarling at almost every inward thrust.

I thought that nothing could have distracted me or broken me from my concentration. I was moving toward something powerful, something important, and I felt like I would go insane if I didn't reach that goal, even if I didn't know what it was. But Bella's hand brushed against me, and it was obvious that only my underwear came between her touch and my skin. I stopped instantly, my eyes snapping open to look at Bella. I couldn't believe her boldness, but I somehow felt the urge for her to do more. Through my haze of desire and shock, I felt a deep-seated fear that I couldn't name. I wasn't ready for this, I couldn't possibly be, but I knew I wouldn't be able to stop now.

"Is this okay?" Bella asked, her voice almost a whisper. I was glad that she at least had enough self-preservation to ask me before proceeding. I nodded my head mutely, unable to deny my desire for her to touch me.

Bella nodded back, and I could feel her hips getting restless waiting for me to continue my ministrations. I stared into her eyes cautiously as I began to slide my fingers within her again. I was more hesitant now, and I took to a much slower pace. I felt the fabric of my boxers slide lightly down my legs, then watched Bella's eyes slide down to my rigid length. I heard Bella gasp, and my breath caught in return as her muscles contracted around my fingers.

I froze and a small gasp caught in my throat as Bella wrapped her heated hand around my length. I noted with feral lust that her hand could barely close around me. I had never considered the size of the average male anatomy in comparison to my own, although I had taken health class many times and estimated that I was slightly above said average. Not that it had mattered to me until now. With Bella's small fingers grasping me and my own fingers within her, there was no doubt in my mind that I would be able to satisfy her. All that, along with the gasp she made, gave me the idea that she thought that I measured up to, or surpassed, her expectations.

Bella looked back into my eyes and gauged my outward reactions. For a moment, she looked very contemplative, then smiled in a way that was mischieviously sexy. Her hand slid up and down my length one time, testing out how I would respond.

My eyes widened and I gasped in shock. The sensation of her fingers sliding over my erection was outrageous. The fiery silk of Bella's skin burned its way so deeply into me that I felt like my entire body was on fire. I pressed myself tightly to Bella, not wanting her to have the opportunity to do that again. I had practically climaxed from that one motion, and because I knew I would not be able to continue what I had been doing for her if she even made another stroke of her hand around me.

Bella looked at me with a mixture of shock and confusion, and I kissed her passionately to let her know everything was okay before I kissed my way down her neck to answer her unasked questions.

"That felt incredibly amazing, Bella. But I almost lost control," I kissed up and down her throat as I spoke, the phantom memory of the hot trail she had left on my skin fueling my desire for her.

"That made you want to bite me?" Bella sounded almost incredulous, and her wrong assumption made me smile against the arch of her neck.

"No, but if I want to continue pleasuring you this way, I need you to keep your hand still on me. I could no longer concentrate."

"Oh," Bella breathed. I could feel her muscles tightening around my fingers again in anticipation. I groaned at the sensation, then hoarsely gave her the only direction I could manage to speak.

"Don't let go, but don't move."

Bella's looked into my eyes cautiously as she slowly readjusted her fingers around me in an effort to be in a more comfortable position. That alone made me shudder and groan once more. I took a few moments to compose myself, then began to move my fingers once more.

I maintained the slow pace I used before, but I was not hesitant any longer. I made sure to use just enough force against that sweet spot deep in Bella's core to make her start crying out again. Her hips writhed and snapped up in response to my motions within her, and I was lost in fantasy again. It was too easy to imagine that I had my length buried within her again. I could not stop the rhythmic moving of my hips in time with Bella's, that white hot fire burning up and down my manhood until something seemed to click within me. My movements, her movements, our movements seemed to be completely guided by instinct.

I vaguely heard the snarls I was making rip through my throat. I felt Bella's hand tighten around me, and I went wild. I crushed my lips back down to Bella's, kissing her almost animalistically. Feeling her mouth work against mine, her tongue sucked tightly in my mouth, made every other sensation a hundred times more intense. My hand seemed to move of its own accord to slide a third finger within Bella's core on my next inward push.

Bella's body went completely taut, her back arching off the bed while her hips writhed and jerked erratically. Her lips broke from mine and I saw her mouth open in a silent scream. Seeing her lost in passion, in pleasure that I had given her threw me over the edge with her. I made one last, loud, sharp snarl and felt myself tumble into an ecstasy I had never experienced. My whole body felt like it was pulsing with the force of my climax, and I could do nothing but be overtaken by it.

When it was over, I still felt Bella's hips moving against my hand, and I watched her move restlessly through the final waves of her orgasm. She had never looked so amazingly beautiful to me as she did when she was like this. No one else had ever seen her this way, and no one else would ever be able to do this for her. She was mine, my love, my mate, and I felt ridiculously lucky.

When Bella stopped moving, I slowly slipped my fingers out of her, grabbed my shirt, and cleaned my release from Bella's stomach.

"You look rather pleased with yourself," Bella noted. Her voice was shaky and her breathing was still ragged and shallow. My smug pride, and, consequently, the smile on my face grew exponentially at knowing that Bella was still trying to recover from her climax.

"You've never looked more beautiful, more irresistible than you did just now," I cupped Bella's cheek in my hand reverently as I spoke, enjoying her blush, the feel of her still overheated skin.

This beautiful creature was mine, and I let her know with my words and my touches exactly how lucky I knew I was. My prideful smirk turned into a beaming smile of love and awe as I continued.

"And I have the intense satisfaction of knowing that I was the one who could give you that kind of pleasure."

"Apparantly, I did something right, too," Bella made a conscious effort to look pointedly at me as her own smirk began on her face. She knew that I had climaxed just as powerfully as she had. I replayed my memories of our night, of everything that I had gotten to experience with Bella. My voice was a rough whisper when I tried to speak.

"You did everything right, Bella. Watching you, hearing your sweet voice, feeling you around my fingers..." I took in a ragged breath as my memory progressed. "Your hand... the combination of everything took me with you when you climaxed. I felt like my body, all its functions were designed specifically to take you to that point."

"Even the sounds you made, Edward."

Bella barely whispered the words, her lashes lowering in embarrassment as she spoke. I lifted her chin to examine her face. She couldn't have known what the snarls I made meant, but she had heard them. Bella cleared her throat.

"You were... growling, I guess? But not in a scary way, it sounded, uhm... " Bella's blush grew, and if I had been capable of blushing, I probably would have been.

"Well, it turned me on."


The possessiveness inside of me roared with pride. She may not have known what it meant, but it had affected her all the same. I tried to not let it get to my head. Bella deserved an explination, but my embarassment was going to make it difficult to speak.

"As I said, every function designed for that one purpose. I was not consciously doing it, it just happened," I tried to sound nonchalant, but I wasn't sure how well I was managing it. I didn't know how to explain the rest to Bella without frightening her. I felt my eyebrows furrow as I mulled over my word choices.

"It was a combination of pleasure and..."

I might as well just say it, I told myself.

"Claiming you as my mate," I felt my shame, my detestment for the monster I really was, but it was overshadowed by the pride. I could not be angry at myself for claiming Bella, not because I wasn't angry, but because my claim was too strong to be brought down.

Bella cradled my face in her hands and kissed me gently, trying to rid me of the embarassment that marred the afterglow of our evening. She made eye contact with me and looked so deeply in my eyes that I forgot to be embarassed anymore. All I knew was that she was mine.

"My mate... that's why the growls turned me on, Edward. Because they came from my mate."

She not only accepted my claim, but she had just claimed me, in her way. I couldn't help the way my breathing raced raggedly faster, nor the way everything left my thoughts but my pride and desire. My mouth crashed into Bella's, kissing her with overwhelming passion and possession.

Bella moaned loudly into my mouth as her fingers tangled tightly in my hair. I laid her down, positioning myself above her in an effort to make the kiss more important, more intense. The hard lines of my body met Bella's pliant curves with reverence and protection. I could smell a new, more gentle wave of arousal rise from Bella, kindling my own arousal. Our kiss became more urgent in the same moment. Suddenly it felt like a kiss that was meant to lead to more.

I pulled back slightly, still grazing Bella's lips with my own. I stared deeply in her eyes, occassionally allowing my tongue to taste her lips. She gasped whenever I did this, and I watched her reactions intently each time. She was so beautiful.

"Mine," I said reverently, my lips ghosting the word over hers. My voice was strong with my claim. I felt Bella shudder as she took in a shaky breath. The rush of arousal she felt was more intense, more like the fury of her climax than mere anticipation.

"Always," Bella smiled. She kissed me gently, her smile widening.

"And you're mine."

I smiled lovingly at Bella. It seemed she was totally unaware of her reaction to my verbal claim. I felt my erection swell at her innocent claim of me as I smiled back at Bella.

"For the rest of eternity, my love."

We stared deeply into each other's eyes as I continued to tease at Bella's lips gently with my mouth. In Bella's eyes, I saw the future more clearly than Alice ever could. I saw all the possibilities eternity held for Bella and me, all the things we would do together. She seemed just as excited at the prospect as I was.

An image flashed in my mind, coupled with my memories from tonight and I could not hide my embarassment. Bella looked just as apologetic about her own thoughts as I did. Her hips shifted and I felt my manhood fall between Bella's legs, directly against her opening. We both hissed loudly at the contact.

We knew that this would be the best part of our new life together. Being able to truly give all of ourselves to one another equally and completely. I took in a shaky breath.

"I don't know if I can control myself any longer," I whispered.

With the scalding heat of Bella's entrance burning into my skin, I knew what needed to happen now, but I hesitated, waiting for Bella's consent. I could feel Bella's slick arousal coat my length, signalling her readiness. My erection slipped between her folds of its own accord, making me growl in anticipation. Bella nodded silently. I didn't even know that I had positioned myself until the tip of my manhood barely pressed against Bella's folds. I felt Bella's hips move restlessly.

I pushed into her quickly without thinking. I snarled as I heard Bella cry out, arching her back. She was so hot, like liquid flame covered in velvety, tight muscles. I felt like I was drowning in her heat, yet at the same time, I felt as though a missing piece of my body had been found. I felt complete inside of Bella's body. She truly was mine.

Bella's muscles contracted tightly around me, making me shudder and drop my head. I needed to be still before I could continue. I had to reign myself back in and give Bella a chance to adjust.

"Bella," her name was a snarl, a torrent of desire and dominance slipping from my lips. I felt lost in the sensation of her. She arched her hips, which made me slide even deeper within her, making us both gasp. I grabbed onto her hips, needing her to be still, while desperately fighting my own desire to guide her hips to push my way in farther.

"I need a moment Bella," I gasped. "It's too much, too good."

I had never told her anything more true than those words. The pleasure of having her wrapped around me was too good, too intense for me to really process. I heard Bella moan, making me take a shaky breath to steady myself. Then I used her hips to sheath myself into Bella completely.

"Oh, God," Bella cried out. Her muscles clamped down on me even more tightly, as though her body would not have released me if I tried to slide out of her. The only way I was able to begin churning slowly within Bella was the fact that, with my vampiric strength, she was unable to restrain me from my movements. The thrusts I made were slow and cautious, but forceful. After a few inward pushes, I began hunting for the spot I had found with my fingers earlier in the evening. When I heard Bella cry out, I snarled in triumph, knowing I had found my mark.

Every thrust I made tore another sweet cry from Bella's lips, and those cries only got louder and more beautiful to my ears. I met every one of those cries with my own snarls, occassionally hearing a quiet moan escape my throat, although I doubted Bella was able to hear it. Without realizing it, my ragged, shallow breathing matched Bella's, fueling the fact that her body felt like an extention of my own.

I didn't recognize Bella's orgasm until she was already lost in it, her breath catching in her throat as her entire body went taut beneath mine. She gasped my name breathlessly, and I could do nothing but snarl and continue the momentum I had built within her. The way her muscles gripped at me erratically was irresistible.

I maintained my position, hitting her most sensitive spot at every inward push, and I felt as though Bella's continually tightening muscles were pulling me in, like gravity strengthened by the tightest grip I could imagine.

I kissed Bella gently as she recovered, resetting my pace so that she could find her breath again. I slid my fingers from her hips to rest at her back, then kissed her again with more passion and urgency. As Bella's fingers tangled in my hair, an idea occurred to me, making me snarl and grin against her lips.

Without any warning, I used my hold on Bella's back to flip us over so that she was above me. Bella was breathless as I put my hands back on her hips and began to guide her in the same slow rhythm I had used while I was above her. She pulled back from the kiss and gasped, eyes wide, as the sensations we both felt became vastly different in this position. Watching Bella move above me was breathtaking, even for someone who didn't need to breathe.

I looked deeply into Bella's eyes, my face lighting in an awestruck, smug smile. Bella blushed slightly, making me chuckle.

"You look so beautiful," I told her as I slid my left hand up her stomach, pushing her back slightly to get a better view of her body moving above mine. She was perfect.

"So beautiful."

I thrust her roughly down to me once, reveling in the way Bella cried out. I snarled loudly and repeated the sharp motion a few more times as I grinned mischieviously at Bella. I felt the pit of my stomach tighten as the white hot streak of heat passed through my body. I was so close to my release, but I knew Bella was closer.

Bella tugged at my arms suddenly, and I sat up without question. I would have thought something was wrong, but she kept moving her hips, churning them over me relentlessly.

"Hold me, Edward. Please, I need to feel you," Bella's lips captured mine hungrily.

I held Bella with one hand between her shoulderblades as her arms slid around my neck, my other hand still maneuvering her hips. I pressed every inch of my body to hers, feeling her urgency to feel as much of me as she could against her. I felt same need a thousand times more intensely. I kissed her more ravenously as I felt myself become desparate to bring her back to a new climax. I devoured her mouth, my tongue tasting every bit of her that I could while my lips met every move of hers.

Bella started mumbling my name repeatedly against my lips. My name was a plea, a chant, a prayer to me. I could feel my snarl peak within me, and my arousal and pride spiked with it. She was so close, and I knew I would not be able to reach my own release until she did. With every short cry or gasp of my name, I felt more possessive of not only her but of her pleasure.

"Mine," I snarled against her lips, yanking her hips down to me roughly as my control broke one final time.

"Yes!" Bella practically screamed before her breath caught in her throat. Her entire body was rigid with her orgasm as I kept my violent pace within her. The way she was tugging at my hair only fueled my own animalistic passion, making me snarl louder and thrust into her harder. I was shuddering almost uncontrollably at the way her inner muscles tugged and contracted around me.

A small part of my brain recognized Bella's climax as a reaction to claiming her once more. I felt my mouth twist into a predatory grin as the snarl built in my throat.


"Edward!" Bella's eyes went wide as she screamed my name, another orgasm overriding her first.

At the sound of my name on her lips, I snarled once more before losing myself in my own release. Bella's back arched gently, a little gasp barely escaping her lips.

As I came down from my bliss, Bella's core relaxed little by little, and she went limp in my arms. I laid back, letting her lay over me, occassionally making little sounds of pleasure. At each sound, I felt her inner walls twitch around me. I stroked Bella's hair softly, moving down to her back, her arms as her heartbeat settled back into its normal rhythm. I could not help the glowing smile on my face as she looked up at me.

"I love you, Bella," I murmured, pulling her into a kiss just as her mouth opened to respond.

She moaned softly into my mouth as we kissed langorously. Bella broke away just long enough to whisper that she loved me back before returning to the kiss. She shuddered softly, wrapping her arms around my neck. I felt a little shudder of my own as I noted the subtle changes in the way Bella tasted to me. The burning of my thirst was less now, so I could truly taste Bella's mouth better. Her flavor seemed specifically designed to entice me and draw me in.

I needed to tell Bella how amazing making love to her was, and that I wasn't afraid anymore, but I felt as though there were no words. I pulled back from our kiss gently, cupping her face in my hands.

"That was... indescribable," I breathed, sitting up slightly so that we were in a more proper position to talk to one another. We both groaned as the motion made me shift slightly within Bella. She breathed in deeply before speaking.

"Definitely indescribable, but I thought you... I mean, you're still..."

Bella's face turned an adorable pink hue as she shifted her hips to illustrate what she was trying to get across. She hissed slightly at the movement, obviously enjoying the fact that I was still rigid within her. I kissed down Bella's throat to her jaw and chuckled as I understood her question better.

"Yes, I did, my love. I guess you haven't noticed that I've been like this almost constantly in your presence."

I couldn't help the smirk on my face as Bella's jaw dropped. She looked at me in obvious shock for a few moments, then contemplation. Suddenly, she giggled, making me arch an eyebrow in confusion.

"You're intoxicated by my very presence?"

Bella continued to laugh as she spoke, and my memory of that first kiss made me laugh with her. I jerked her hips to me without warning. Bella cried out softly, her laughter stopping as instantly as mine did.

"Definitely," I growled in her ear, suddenly wanting her again just as badly as I had at the start of our night. Bella gasped suddenly in shock, her eyes fixed on her alarm clock. I glanced over and noticed the time. It was already past five in the morning, and Charlie was due home by around six. I chuckled at our combined frustration, although I kept mine to myself.

I flipped us both over quickly in my final act of passion for the night, knowing we didn't have the opportunity for more. It took all my willpower not to growl as Bella's inner muscles clamped down on me once more.

"Sleep, my Bella," I whispered, forcing myself to slide out of her gently. Bella made a protesting moan, her hands gripping at my hips in an attempt to pull me back to her, back inside of her. I was shocked that I was able to resist.

"Later, my love. You need to sleep now," I told her, my arms wrapping tightly around hers as I laid beside her.

"I don't want to sleep," Bella yawned, making me smile.

"It doesn't feel right."

I felt a small shudder run through my body as Bella's words rang too true in my ears. I suddenly felt incomplete without being buried deep inside of her.

"I know exactly what you mean, but it will have to wait until later."

I was already making plans in my mind for the next evening. I would take her to the meadow, taking as much time as we had to worship her body. There were things I wanted to try, things I needed to tell her. I wanted to taste her so badly.

As I began to hum her lullaby, I continued to plan, noting with one final swell of pride that she was already asleep by the time the melody started to pass my lips.