I do not own Twilight, Bella or Edward... but I do love them so! Thanks for reading!
"Fuck you, Mike. I know what happened, I know you and I know my husband. Hell, I also know the woman in question. So maybe you should just run along to work and leave me the hell alone." I turned abruptly and walked away. Away from the asshole in front of me and away from a job that I thought I loved.
I rush to my car and try to calm down. I call Edward when I begin to relax. He answers quickly, "How'd it go?"
"I quit," I sigh into the phone.
"Wow, I wasn't expecting that. I just thought Vic would put you under someone else."
"Yeah, well, she didn't offer."
"What happened?" he asks.
I go over the entire situation from start to finish with him and when I get to the end I feel comfortable with my decision to quit.
"Are you ok, Love?" I can tell from the tone of his voice that he is trying to gauge my mood.
"I'm fine," I say quietly.
"Why don't you come to the office and let me and Jazz take you to lunch?" he says in an ultra-chipper voice.
"Ok, I will be there in a little bit." We hang up and I just sit in the car for a few minutes, trying to figure out what I want to do next. I decide that I will go and visit Alice after lunch and see if she has anything I can do for a while until I can find something, somewhere else.
I send a quick text to Esme.
10:57am: going to lunch with E. Do you need me to come get J? –B
10:58am: No, we r fine. U OK? – Mom
10:59am: I'm ok… don't have a job… e's trying to cheer me up… txt u when I'm on my way. –B
11:01am: k. have fun. –Mom
It doesn't take me long to drive to Edward and Jasper's office. I park and check my reflection in the mirror. My make-up is fine, but I put a little more lip-gloss on just because it makes me feel better. I take a deep breath and wonder why I am hesitating to head inside. I'm frustrated… no I'm angry at how my meeting went this morning. I truly went into Victoria's office thinking that she would understand why I couldn't work with Mike and shift me to another senior editor. She definitely wasn't the woman I used to know. I shake my head in disbelief, get out of the van, and head into Edward's office.
Lauren, their receptionist, immediately greets me with a smile, "Good morning, Mrs. Cullen."
"Good morning, Lauren," I smile, "I'm meeting Edward for lunch."
"Sounds like fun," she continues to smile. Lauren is very sweet, very flirty but not extremely bright. I'm not saying she's dumb. Actually, she is a capable, dependable worker. Just don't expect her to do much outside of her reception desk. "I will buzz Charlotte and let her know you are on your way back."
"Thanks," I nod as I head past her desk and down the hallway towards Edward's office.
Edward and Jasper's web-development company seems to be growing by leaps and bounds. When they initially started the company they were the secretaries, programmers, developers, analysts, managers, and CEO's… they did everything. Now, they had thirty programmers in five different development groups. There are five separate managers that run each group and they report directly to Jasper. When projects are very important, Edward will directly oversee them and occasionally help program them. Their clients are very diverse, ranging from mortgage banking firms all the way to small businesses. It will be interesting to see if Edward is really capable of working less.
When I get to the end of the hall, I take a right and find Charlotte sitting at her desk, sipping her tea. She sets down her tea and smiles, "Hello, Bella. Go right in. He's ready for you."
Charlotte is a few years older than Edward and I. Her husband, Peter, was Jaspers' college roommate, and when Edward and Jasper were ready to hire employees, Peter was the first person they called. Peter immediately came to work for the guys and when it was time to hire a secretary Peter suggested they talk to Charlotte. At first the guys weren't sure, but once she interviewed with them, they immediately fell in love with her and she has been here ever since.
"Thanks, Charlotte," I can't help but smile at her friendly face, "How have you been? It feels like forever since I have seen you."
"I'm good. Things have been busy here, so that makes my day go faster," she offers me a knowing look, "How are things with you?"
"I take it you heard?" I ask. It wouldn't be unusual for Edward to let Charlotte know what was going on with us.
"Yes, when Edward asked me to make lunch reservations at Teague's, he mentioned something about you quitting your job. Are you ok with that? I know you really enjoy editing."
"Well, It's not that I'm not ok," I paused looking for the right words to accurately convey my frustration, "I'm really disappointed in the behavior of people who I thought were friends. Or at least I thought they were relatively decent people. It was just a really disheartening morning, that's all."
"I'm sorry to hear that," Charlotte stands up and walks around beside her desk and gives me a hug.
"Thanks," I hug her back, "You know we need to get together soon. We all haven't gotten together in quite a while."
Charlotte steps away and smiles, "that sounds great, Bella. Just give me a call and we will work it out."
"Ok, I will."
I walk to the office door, turn the knob and head inside only to find Edward sitting behind his desk, staring intently at his computer screen and typing away on his keyboard. I slowly close the door behind me, all the while keeping my eyes on my husband. For him to not to have noticed me, he must really be concentrating on trying to figure something out. I watch as he scrunches up his forehead, types a few more things, one hand comes up and rakes through his hair in frustration, he licks his lips and then I have to interrupt…
"Ahem…" I smile as I pretend to clear my throat.
He looks up at me and I am completely dazzled as his lips pull up into a slow, sure and sexy grin, "Hey, Love." He hands come to the edge of the desk and he pushes himself back and away. He stands and stretches, pushing his hands up to the ceiling and letting out a very familiar groaning sigh. "What?" he asks as he rights himself, still grinning at me.
"Oh… ummm… nothing," I stutter as he makes his way around the desk and over to me. As he walks towards me he slowly looks me up and down, taking me in… making me want to climb up his lean body and…
Once he is in front of me he takes one of my hands and pulls me flush to his body as he raises his other hand to the back of my neck, cradling my head. He rests his forehead against mine and whispers, "You ok?"
I nod my head and then lean in to rest my head against his chest. "When I woke up this morning, I never thought my day would be going like this."
He pulls back and looks down at me, "I know, Love. But it's going to be ok. Really… it is." He smiles at me and then leans down and kisses me gently. He lingers for a moment, opening his mouth slightly and I take full advantage and deepen the kiss. He squeezes me tighter to him and pulls his mouth away from mine while chuckling quietly, "Bella, we have to stop."
"Why?" I whine as I push myself against him. I can feel his body's reaction to mine and I smile.
"You know why," he teases back.
"O-kaaaay," I giggle. I can't help but feel giddy that after all these years, and children that I can still elicit such a strong reaction from such a handsome man. I give him a quick peck on the lips and pull away. Edward let's go of my body, but keeps a hold of my hand and leads me to the leather couch that sits against the far wall.
As we sit down, Edward asks, "Do you want to talk about it?"
"No," I shake my head, "I really don't. I just need to talk to Alice and see if she has anything I can do."
"You sure?" he prods, knowing my need to vent my frustration.
"We can talk about it later. I'm just disappointed with Victoria. I thought she would have my back on this."
"Love, I'm sorry that she let you down." Edward shakes his head, "But, Victoria hasn't been the same since she took over that position. And James, well, let's just say the two of them aren't very happy with one another anymore."
"He's having an affair?" I ask moderately surprised.
"No, not really, he has a girl-friend," Edward scoffs.
"No… I knew James was a jerk, but I never thought he'd cheat."
"Bells, why do you think I never befriended James?" he asks raising an eye-brow in question.
"Honestly, I never really thought about it," I shrug my shoulders, "I just chalked it up to personality conflicts."
"I think that just about sums it up. I didn't like the way he talked about his wife and his marriage."
"Wow," I sigh as I lean back into the couch, "that really explains a lot. It explains why Victoria thinks the way she does now. Why she would allude to you not being faithful."
"She did WHAT?!" Edward's face instantly turns red and his expression turns angry.
I reach over and take his hand into mine, holding it with one hand and stroking the back of it with the other. "Baby, don't be angry," I said trying to soothe his temper. "She basically said that the reason I why I didn't want to talk to Mike is that I am scared what Mike might have to say about you. And that his version of what happened might be the truth."
"She said that?" he growls. My explanation did not help at all.
"Not, in so many words," I squeeze his hand tightly, "but it wasn't hard to figure out what she was trying to say. Especially now, with what you just told me."
"Love…" he began, but I cut him off.
"Edward, I don't believe her. I don't want to talk to Mike about it because I know his version would be complete bull-shit. I know YOU and I know what happened. Your word is the only one that matters to me." I punctuate by leaning forward and wrapping my arms around his neck and kissing his lips. His hands fall to my hips and I can feel his fingers digging in through my pants. I intend my kiss to soothe him, but it seems to ignite something in him. He kisses in return, and it's powerful and demanding. His mouth is devouring mine and it's all I can do to remember to breath. Gasping, I pull my head away and then he attacks my neck and I can't help but groan, "Edward, please."
He stops and his forehead is resting against my cheek and I can feel him panting for breath. "God, Bella," he groans and wraps his arms around my back, "we just need to get the hell out of here."
"Yeah," I laugh, "I think we do." I push myself away and sit back down on the couch. "Can you get out of here for the rest of the day?" I ask shyly. I'm hopeful, but I did walk into his office only to find him pouring over something.
He smiles at me, "I think I can, but I will have to work from home sometime this afternoon. I have to… fuck…" he shakes his head, "Let me call Peter and see if I can get one of our better programs on it."
I smile widely and my heart soars because I have never in 12 years of marriage heard him say such a thing. "Really?" I whisper.
"Yeah, you've had a rough day and I think you need me right now," he reaches up and gently strokes my cheek, "and I know that I need you right now." He abruptly stands up and kisses the top of my head. "Let me call Peter."
He walks over to his desk and calls Peter. The conversation quickly turns to the details of the problem and who Edward would like to have work on it. And as Edward gets involved in their conversation, there is a knock at Edward's office door followed by Jasper opening the door and peeking his head in the office. He sees me sitting on the couch and he smiles as he steps into the office and comes to sit by my on the couch. "Hey Bells," he looks over at Edward and then back at me, "what's going on?" he asks nodding towards Edward.
"He's taking the day off so that he can spend the day with me." I smile, proud of my husband.
"Wow," he says under his breath. Jasper looks at me and then asks, "we still on for lunch?"
"Ummm… yeah…" I wrinkle my brow, had forgotten that Edward said he and Jasper would be taking me to lunch.
Jasper chuckles quietly, "He didn't tell you he invited us, did he?"
"No. Who is us?" I ask.
"Me and Al, Em and Rose. Is that alright?"
"Yeah, I just thought it was going to be me and Edward. But, it will be fun for all of us to go to lunch. We haven't done that in a while." I smile, warming up to the idea of seeing everyone.
"You sure?" he questions sweetly.
"Yeah," I say with more enthusiasm, "I think I am." I nudge his knee with my foot.
"Ok, good, because Al is dying to see you!" Jasper winks and stands up. "We need to leave shortly to make the reservation," he tells me loud enough for Edward to hear. Edward looks up and nods at Jasper as he says goodbye to Peter and hangs up the phone.
"You ready to go, Love?" Edward asks as he grabs his laptop and puts it in its' case to bring home.
"Yep," I smile, thinking this day might just turn out better than I thought it would an hour ago. Hell, better than I thought it would fifteen minutes ago.
I turn to follow Jasper out of the office when Edward gently grabs my arm and turns me to face him. He is smiling at me and I feel myself melt all over. "Have I told you how beautiful you look today?" he asks waggling his eyebrows at me.
"No, baby," I can't help but giggle at his silliness as he pulls me against his chest and nuzzles my neck.
"You my beautiful wife… look so fucking sexy today," he growls into my ear and then spins me back around so that we are walking out the door.
I giggle again and I feel like a giddy school girl. It feels good. It feels light. And it has been so long since I have felt anything like this.
"Charlotte," Edward smiles, "I'm off the rest of day. If there is anything urgent that needs taken care of please direct it to Jasper and Peter and they will take care of it."
"Ok, Mr. Cullen. Enjoy your day," she winks at me and I can't help but giggle again.
I am smiling ear-to-ear when Edward takes my hand and we head out to meet out friends for lunch.
Edward drives the van and I am happy to be his passenger. "So," I begin, "Jasper told me this is a group lunch…" I am looking at him and I see a smile spread across his lips.
"Yeah," he glances at me and then back at the road, "After your meeting this morning, I thought you could use some real friends." Edward reaches across the middle console and takes my hand into his, giving it a gentle squeeze.
I nod my head in agreement. "At first I was a little annoyed by the idea," I shift in my seat so that my body is slightly turned towards him. "But, after thinking about it I realize I hadn't seen the girls in a while and that it would be nice to have some fun."
We pull into the parking lot of Teague's and Edward parks close to the restaurant and then he looks around the lot. "It looks like we are the first ones here," he grins at me as leans in and kisses me gently on the lips. He lingers for a moment and then I find myself smiling against his lips. "What?" he asks.
I shake my head, hesitating because I'm not sure what I am really smiling about. "It's just… well…," Edward pulls back slightly and cocks his head to the side, "it's you."
"Me?" he questions. A slight look of confusion comes across his face as he leans back towards his seat. I grab his shoulders and attempt to keep him close to me and he stills letting me.
I sigh and then feel brave enough to continue, "I just can't believe how things have changed between us in such a short period of time."
His forehead wrinkles, "I'm sorry, Love. I'm trying to do better." He leans in and gives me another kiss and pulls back looking me directly in the eye. His green eyes are pleading with me, begging me to see that he is truly sorry.
"I know you're sorry. I do." I smile and lean towards him and whisper, "just don't stop trying, ok?"
"I won't," he whispers in return. He fills the tiny gap between us and places a feather-light kiss on the corner of my mouth. I move my mouth towards his, parting my lips slightly. I feel his tongue trace my bottom lip and then he sucks it into his mouth. I wrap my hands around his neck and try to pull myself impossibly closer to him.
KNOCK, KNOCK, KNOCK.
We both startle and look at the drivers' side window, only to see Emmett making a goofy face in the window. "You two planning on getting out of there any time soon?" he yells and then he rubs his belly, "I'm hungry!"
Edward and I can't help but laugh. "You ready, Love?" Edward asks.
"Yeah," I smile. "Baby?" He turns and looks at me, "I love you."
Edward jumps out of the van and runs around to my side and throws the door open. He reaches for my hand and pulls me out. "I love you," he pulls me into his arms, "so much." He lets me go and smiles down at me. "Let's go eat."
He takes my hand and I realize that things are going to be ok. I realize that we have made it through and, hopefully, we will better for it.
Hopefully, we will make the best of this life and everything in it.
a/n: Thanks for reading ! Please send me a review and let me know what you think… Should this be the end or should I continue?
In case you're interested, I have started another story called Man of Honor--- it's a Navy SEALward story…