Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.
Please note that this story is rated M for lemony explicit scenes of a slash and polyamorous nature between Edward, Bella and Jasper. Please do not read the story if you are under 18 or scenes of this nature will offend you.
Thank you so much to my beta, beans827, for spinning her magic grammar skills on the story.
Chapter 7 – Without Love
The week of our honeymoon sped by and Bella was right, we never encountered a soul for the entire week. She had organized a week's worth of groceries to be delivered and we had a ready supply of wood for the log fireplaces. The whole week was a wondrous time and we spent the entire time in a fog of happiness. The cottage had an upright piano and I played that while Jasper strummed his guitar. We sang Bella love songs and, of course, Jasper and I played every Elvis song until we thought we were perfect. At other times, we all curled up in front of the fireplace and read. Bella with her penchant for the period novels of Jane Austen, Jasper with his love of Westerns and me with the classics. And then there was our lovemaking…getting to know each other's bodies and what we liked and didn't like. Not that I can think of one thing I didn't like. The first week of our marriage, in short, was perfect.
At the end of the week, we loaded up the car and with one last fond look back at the cottage, we returned to start our married life for real.
Once we arrived home, we unpacked and then had a quiet supper. We were all happy to be in our new house and settled in but a pall settled over us as the evening drew to a close. Jasper was going back to work in the morning and we were all suffering withdrawal symptoms at the thought of being separated in the morning. As we undressed and got into bed, Bella and I automatically moved to either side of Jasper and enveloped him in our arms and our love. We whispered quietly of our love and how much we would miss him and fell asleep wrapped up in each other's arms.
The morning was a frantic rush. Bella made Jasper his favourite breakfast of blueberry pancakes and kissed him goodbye at the door. Jasper was putting his car in for service that day, so I was following him to the mechanic and then dropping him off at the station. We waved goodbye to Bella and, of course, as soon as Jasper jumped into my Chevrolet after dropping his car at the mechanics, he fiddled with the radio until he found one playing an Elvis song. This one was unlike his other hits; it was sombre and sad and it was called Without Love. We were quiet as we listened to it and when I pulled up in the parking lot at the back of the station, Jasper turned to me earnestly and grabbed my hands.
"Edward, you and Bella are everything to me. My lovers and my family. Before your love, I had nothing at all, just like that song. With your love in my life, I am now complete."
Without thinking I leaned over the seat and kissed him quickly, tears in my eyes. "Jasper, your life will be forever filled with our love. This last week has shown me that what the three of us have is so special and nothing that could happen would ever change that. I love you."
I got out of the car and opened the trunk to get Jasper's duffle bag with a change of clothes. He rounded the car and when he took the bag from my hands, our fingers brushed together. I stared into his eyes and winked before getting back into the car and starting the engine. I rolled down the window and called out to him that we would meet him at the club after his shift and turned out of the parking lot, getting a glimpse of James Anderson getting into the squad car on the other side of the lot.
I waved but he ignored me and I shrugged wondering what the hell had gotten into him this morning. I felt sorry for Jasper having to put up with his foul mood all day. Time went so slowly that day without Jasper and the both of us got ready in super fast time for our evening out, anxious to be with him again. He was playing another set at the Flame Club tonight and as we arrived, we heard his band tinkering around with the song from the Elvis movie, Jailhouse Rock. I smiled to think of the dancing we had all done over our honeymoon trying to perfect the hip swinging and the foot shuffles that Elvis performed. Jazz had wanted me to get up on stage and do it with him, but I didn't think I had had enough beer for that to be happening. Bella and I swayed to the music, waiting for Jasper's appearance on stage.
I was pulled from my memories when Bella placed her fingers on my arm and leaned over to kiss my cheek. "I wish he was able to be here with us too, honey. I miss him so much."
I nodded and looked back to my son dancing wrapped up in the arms of his true love swaying to the music on the dance floor. He looked over at me and his mother and winked. What was that all about? Bella grinned at me but shook her head. I wish I could read her mind right now; she had a very mischievous look in her eyes. She stood up from the table then and handed me a bag, before darting out onto the dance floor next to Jason and Ethan.
I couldn't believe it when my demure 46 year old wife whipped off her jacket to reveal a black and white striped shirt underneath. Jason and Ethan did the same and I was not altogether surprised to hear Jailhouse Rock blast from the speakers. Momentarily fear whipped through my veins. It was too hard to do this without Jasper here. I just couldn't do it. I sneaked a glance in my family's direction and caved at the sight of their pleading faces. For them and for Jasper I would do anything. I opened the bag and shrugged my dinner jacket off. I pulled the striped sweater over my head and jumped over the table, slid onto my knees and skidded across the floor to squeals and applause.
My muscles protested the exertion but I manned up and shimmied to my feet in the middle of my family and on the corresponding beat of the music, lifted onto my toes and did the jailhouse rock. Bella pinched my ass as I swivelled my hips in her direction while Jason and Ethan jived on either side of me. The whole reception was up on their feet cheering and clapping for us and as the music drew to a close, I grabbed Bella and took her mouth in a not too gentle kiss.
"I love you Bella, with all my heart, for both of us."
As we made our way back to our table amidst much merriment for our little impromptu performance, I saw the cake being wheeled out. It was time for the speeches and my hands started to shake a little.
After Jason and Ethan cut the cake and promptly smooshed it in each other's faces, I stood up and moved towards Jason to give my speech.
I stood behind him with my hands on his shoulders prouder than any father had ever been. I am sure of it.
"Jason Whitlock Cullen is the bravest man I know. Today, he stood up in front of you all and declared his love and devotion to the love of his life. His love is not conventional and defies many of the narrow definitions of what love is said to be. He cannot even legally declare his love but today he has done so and proudly. I am so proud of him for being his own man and not being afraid of fighting for what is important. Twenty five years ago, I was not so brave. Bella and I married formally on this date but to our everlasting sadness we did not publicly acknowledge Jasper Whitlock, the third in our circle of love that day. We made our own private declarations but Bella and I wish that we had been braver and told the world of our love for this wonderful man. He can't be with us today but I know he is prouder than punch of our son and happier than we have a right to be to gain another son in Ethan. Welcome to our family, Ethan."
I leaned down and kissed Jason on Bella's gift of chocolate brown hair and gazed into Jasper's sky blue eyes and was content with my life.
As the reception wound down, I signalled Jason, Ethan and Bella and we headed out to the cars. James caught up with us on the lawn and asked to go with us, which I readily acquiesced to. It was time to visit Jasper. It wasn't far and as the car slowed to a stop at the end of the long drive, I grasped Bella's hand in mine. We exited the car and walked hand in hand to the entrance. Jason was anxious to be with his father on his wedding day and introduce him to the love of his life. Bella and I wanted to tell him that on our anniversary we had finally told the world of our love.
Jasper was buried under the shade of a big old magnolia tree that Bella and I had planted on the first anniversary of his death. It was a peaceful place in the cemetery and Bella and I had spent a lot of time here that first year after he was gone, trying to come to terms with the hole he left in our lives when he was taken from us so cruelly.
Bella and I had waited in vain that night at the Flame Club for Jasper, but he had never arrived. We found out later that night when we had driven to the station looking for him that Jasper had been shot and killed instantly in a convenience store robbery late in his shift in downtown Chicago. We found out the details from James Anderson, Jasper's new partner on the job. I found James, sobbing in the back of the locker room completely distraught over what had happened. He told me that Jasper and he had gotten into an argument not long before the shift ended and he had stormed off down the street to cool down. Jasper had called out to him that he was getting some gum and he would appreciate him getting over his little problem so that they could drive back to the station and finish the shift. James had just walked around the corner and was halfway down the street when he had heard the gunshots and by the time he had got back to the store, he found Jasper and the owners of the store lying dead on the floor and no sign of anyone else. The gun man was never found and the powers that be decided that Jasper had walked in on a hold-up at the store and paid the ultimate price for trying to help the owner.
Bella and I were heartbroken and merely existed for months. Some days, we barely spoke to each other; our grief was so raw; the slightest words between us would set us off crying. Then a miracle happened and we discovered that Bella was pregnant and that she had conceived on our honeymoon. We were overjoyed, and slowly, we picked ourselves up from the depths of our despair and truly began to live again.
Jason knew from an early age who is father was and of our love for him. We had visited Jasper a number of times throughout the years to share our joys and our heartbreak, but it was with a heavy heart that we moved to New York about a year after he was murdered. We needed to make a new start for ourselves and our house was a constant reminder that Jasper was missing from our lives. I went back to school and studied law and became a civil rights lawyer. Jason followed in my footsteps and fell in love with a cop that worked on a case he was taking to court. We worried for him as we knew all too well the dangers of the job, but he was adamant that it was his calling.
Elvis was a fixture in our lives and a constant reminder of Jasper. Bella used to sing Love me Tender to Jason instead of lullabies right up until he was about eight years old. Although, when he was sick or upset, he wanted her to sing him to sleep until he was a lot older. We used to dance around the living room to Jailhouse Rock and then later to a Little Less Conversation. I taught Jason the guitar and we used to have sing-a-longs with me on the piano and all of us singing. We had a happy life filled with love and laughter.
We missed Jasper terribly but we had come to realize that even though Jasper was physically gone, he lived forever in our hearts and memories and eventually as we found out, through the gift of his son. We would never be without love.