Hey! So I wasn't supposed to post this yet =/ I meant to add loads more to this chapter and give it a completely different ending.. I guess I'll just have to add that into the following chapter.

I'm posting this now because I'm going on holiday tomorrow and won't be back until a week on Thursday. I therefore thought I'd be generous and post what I'd written now rather than leaving it 2 weeks and then posting a ridiculously loooong chapter. Instead I'm just splitting it into 2. You might prefer that actually, it makes the fic longer and less rushed :)

Anyhoo, thanks for reading and I hope you like…

Chapter 22:

Early September

"I think I'm going to have to give you a lesson in light packing", Edward called to Bella in a moan as he struggled with two heavy and un-cooperative suitcases, a medium sized material brown one and a large plastic red one, the latter being Bella's of course, which was almost twice the magnitude of Edwards. A rucksack was also swung over his shoulder, only adding to the strain on his back and neck. The combined weight inhibiting his pace and movement; always a stride and a half behind his girlfriend, who marched on up ahead, unscathed and carefree; the small lightweight bag on her back producing very little restriction against her delicate frame.

"But I did pack light" she informed him with a blasé shrug, unknowing to Edwards internal torture, as she came to a stop on the spot. "I didn't bring half the stuff I was going too".

"Well then I think your definition of 'Light' must be different to mine. This feels like you've packed boulders in here" he told her, coming to a halt and silently revelling in the chance to take a much needed break. "Unless…" his eyes narrowed inquisitively.

"Unless what?"

"You didn't stuff your dad in here did you?" he cocked an eyebrow as he looked at her.

"Nope, Charlie's not in there, sorry if that disappoints you" she grinned delightedly as she carried onwards. Edward meanwhile snickered, shaking his head as he reluctantly yanked on the two suitcases; the jaunt wasn't over yet.

"How much further is it?" he asked, growing more exhausted by the second, his arms felt as heavy and as numb as two house bricks.

"Just around the corner. Is it really that heavy?"

"Well I have carried it up 3 flights of stairs, in case you forgot" he reminded her, forcing back a scowl.

"I thought you liked the exercise?"

He rolled his eyes; even the Hulk would find this taxing. "Sure, exercise is good. Bursting a blood vessel probably isn't".

She looked back at him, eyebrows raised as she gave him a long laboured glance; presuming he was over exaggerating.

"Whatever, all I'm saying is, the next time you say 'let's just take the stairs instead of the elevator', you're on your own" he told her mimicking her voice, and she nodded back half-heartedly, more concerned with counting up the door numbers with each one they passed by.

"42… 44…46! This is the one!" she beamed excitedly, sliding the key into the lock and turning the handle. Relief flooded through Edwards veins. Finally he had an appreciation for the Porters of this world, what an underappreciated profession.

"Home sweet home!" she cheered as they burst inside, and her eyes studied the room with inspection. Wardrobes - check, bathroom - check, bed - check, another bed - che… "What the…?" she muttered as she walked inside, examining the expanse of the beds, both obviously single in size. "Separate beds? You've got to be kidding me!" she announced distraught.

"Oh, well that's just great isnt it, and here was me worrying we'd have to share a bed" drawled a sarcastic Edward, "I guess the universe really does want us apart". He added half-jokingly, and she flashed him an unimpressed sideways glare in return.

"Kidding" he emphasised with raised eyebrows, before wheeling the cases into the room and plonking them near the doorway. As he released the handles he shook his hands and arms, they throbbed and trembled from the constant muscle pressure.

"Maybe they ran out of double beds. We did leave it until the last minute" Edward proposed, closing the door behind him.

"No, they specifically told me over the phone that they had rooms to spare, this is just idiots unable to do their jobs properly" Bella chastised through a scowl, recklessly tossing her bag onto the floor in her anger.

"Ok, well don't take it out on the room" there was a nervous laughter to Edward's voice, as he picked up her bag and placed it with the others. "So maybe this isn't the one we asked for" he went up behind her, running his hands up and down his girlfriends arms, "but, it's still clean and spacious, it'll do fine. We'll deal with it".

After much thought, Bella gave one resolute nod back, taking on the persona of a business woman. "You're right, we'll just go back down there and demand for the room we asked for!" she said determinedly, clearly ignoring Edwards intention.

"I'm sorry?" he smiled, confused.

"Grab your stuff, we'll get going" she instructed him, as she went for her bag near the doorway. But Edward wasn't moving an inch.

"What are you kidding me?" he laughed, turning on his heel in bewilderment. "Hang on a sec" he halted her movements. "I just hauled that lot up god knows how many staircases, my arms about ready to drop off as it is. Are you trying to kill me?" he questioned her, almost sincerely.

"Of course not" she smiled perplexed, finding his argument nonsensical, "but if we don't go now, it'll be too late otherwise" she proceeded to grab her bag, swinging it over her shoulder, ready for the off.

"Right well, have fun wheeling them back by yourself, because I'm certainly not going to do it" Edward begrudgingly walked over to the window, peering down at the University Campus; never having seen a birds eye view of it before.

"You're not even going to help me?" she asked disbelievingly; ambivalence across her face.

"Nope" he gave one uncaring shoulder roll.

"Edward?" she prompted him.

"What? I'm sorry, but I'm not doing it" he turned to face her, "I'm exhausted Bella, it's been such a long day, all I want to do is lie down and take a break".

"But this isn't even the room we asked for!" she told him. "It could be someone else's for all we know".

He shrugged once again, seemingly indifferent about it, "Well we've got the room keys haven't we?"


"So that makes it our room" he concluded.

She huffed in irritation, unable to grasp Edward's lack of care and interest. "But its separate beds!" she explained to him, as if he even needed reminding of that fact a second time.

"Look" he ran an impatient hand through his hair; hours of packing, followed by a lengthily car drive, paper work and what felt like a lifetime of stairs, a rotten old shed to Edward would seem satisfactory, providing it had a toilet and the space to lie down in. "I know it's not ideal, far from it in fact, but it'll do. We can make it work" he assured her.

"Riiight" she drew out, her smile mocking and disbelieving. "And how exactly are we going to make this work Edward?" she waved her arms to the two single beds, the cupboards purposefully placed in the middle of the room to separate the two sides.

"Well, I don't know. You're not exactly large and in charge are you? We can squish onto one" he suggested.

"Squish?" she turned her face up; imagining sardines in a tin.

"Well, yeah, I can't see a problem with it." He shrugged, trying to lighten the mood a little. "Just think of the possibilities, the lack of space means we'll have to snuggle every night! Not that you even need another excuse to get close to me" he smirked teasingly, and she rolled her eyes back at him, pulling the bag back off her shoulder and placing it onto the floor.

"Oh! And" he emphasised, "when we've had an argument, not unlike the one were having now" he all-but muttered shiftily, "We can retreat to separate beds. It's actually perfect if you think about it" he smirked back at her; now finding the idea of two beds much more sufficient than just the one. But sadly it did nothing to relieve her temper.

"Yeah well, unless were planning on arguing every single night, this could get really inconvenient" she folded her arms across her chest like a stroppy teen.

"Inconvenient?" he pulled back at her choice of words. "For who exactly? Is it inconvenient to sleep with me?" he questioned her; feeling offended.

"You know I didn't mean that" Bella told him directly.

"Then what's the problem, why do you care so much?"

"I just do!" she blared back at him. "And it wouldn't hurt for you to show a little care as well".

"Yeah well, I'm sorry but I don't see the point. And truthfully, I suggest you loosen your belt a little, cause nothings going to change tonight".

Bella's face grew red with fury, "Excuse me?"

"Look, let's just leave it now shall we," Edward tried to brush it off, sensing he'd said the wrong thing. Their history of arguing over irrelevant things was apparently not so dead and buried after all.

"No I won't leave it. You're saying I'm uptight" she challenged him with eyes of thunder.

"No, I'm not saying that, I'm just saying that this is Uni life, and sometimes you just have to learn to accept it".

Folding her arms dismissively she angled herself away from him. "I only want what I asked for" she muttered through gritted teeth.

"Fair enough, I understand that, but unfortunately it's not going to happen. Not tonight anyway" he told her before sighing. "Why are we even fighting over this? Who cares about the beds, I'd honestly sleep in a tent every night, if it meant we could be together. I don't care where I sleep, or what I sleep on. As long as were together, does any of that really matter?" he attempted damage control, posing the question to her, whilst he silently wondered how this day had turned out quite so badly. The only answer Edward received however was a soft snivel, and immediately he regretted letting things get so out of hand.

"Look I'm sorry" Edward dragged his feet towards her, standing before her and cupping her cheeks. He exhaled loudly as his steady vision stared into her glassy eyes. "I didn't mean to upset you".

"You didn't" she wiped away her seeping tears. "It's been a long day. I'm just tired… I get irrational when I'm tired".

He smiled lightly, padding her tears with the bottom surface of his thumb. "You're not being irrational Bella; you just wanted it to be perfect. You had this image in your head of what our first place would be like, and understandably, it's let you down... But you've forgotten one thing" he told her. "This place is ours Bella; it's yours and its mine. Something we share together. And that's what makes it perfect" he spoke with so much emotion, and she smiled at him through her tears; a small nod of her head to concur. Leaning over she huddled into his chest, feeling as he encircled her frame within the security blanket of his arms.

He kissed her shoulder, her temple and ran a hand through her hair, before he scooped her up, walking her over towards the bed where Edward placed her down onto one side.

"Look, we can both fit on here easy" he climbed over her, lying down beside his girlfriend. Demonstrating the beds ability.

"Yeah I guess …"she agreed thoughtfully. "And if we fall out?" she turned her head towards him, a hint of amusement in her heavy-eyes.

"Well, like I said, that's where the second bed comes into it" he replied smartly, a grin on his face.

"No, not that" she laughed with limited enthusiasm. "I meant what if we fall out of the bed".

"Oh" he chuckled back, "Well, I don't know. What's the odd bruise here and there?" he smirked, shifting onto his side as he propped up his head with his hand.

She flashed him a look of unease, but sensed he was joking. "We won't fall out" he smiled, his eyes radiating warmth as he clasped onto her hand, interlocking her delicate fingers with his own. "I'll make sure of it. And anyway, if it gets a little tight, I'm totally ok with you using me as a human mattress".

Her lips quirked at that. "You might not be saying that after a week of back pain" she advised him as she eyed him to her right.

"It would be worth it, believe me" he smiled at her reassuringly, before he returned to his previous position, resting his back on the bed as his eyes found the ceiling above.

"Ahh, nothing like a long steamy shower to relieve some tension" said Edward as he shut off the water and opened the cubicle door.

"Yeah well you do realise all our stuffs still packed away in the case" she reminded him, "Towels, underwear, pyjamas".

"Oh yeah, didn't think of that".

Bella shivered as they stood dripping wet in the bathroom, using her arms to wrap around her she did her best to preserve some warmth.

"Hang on" he told her, as he tiptoed his way out of the bathroom and across the bedroom floor.

"What are you doing?" she called to him from where she lingered behind the door, using the door frame to conceal her current state of undress.

"Just wait there" he instructed her, and she watched with glee, her cheeks glowing red, as Edward's naked form pattered across the carpet.

"Fine, but close the curtains while you're over there. God knows what people will think if they see you. You know making friends here is kind of a big deal for me" she called to him. "And I know they say first impressions aren't everything, but in this case, let's not risk that".

Edward craned his head to look back at her. "Was that an insult?" he asked as he hastily pulled the curtains across, flicking on the light switch to illuminate the room.

"Only if you take it to be. It was more of a general statement really" replied Bella as he grabbed the bed sheet from off the 2nd bed, before retracing his steps back into the bathroom.

"Here we go" he said as he firstly wrapped it around his shoulders before pulling Bella close to his chest, where he encircled the remainder of the bed sheet around her trembling body.

"I don't think this was meant to be used as a bath towel" Bella noted as she looked up at him.

"Well I wont tell if you won't" he smiled, before his face softened out, his head shifting to an angle to kiss her lips.

"I'm sorry for before" she said to him in a hushed whisper, mere moments after their kiss.

"I'm sorry too".

Some time later they made their way towards the bed, "You warm the bed, I'll grab the pyjamas" she told him as she made her way over towards the suitcases.

"Pyjamas?" his turned his face up. "Bella, please" he shook his head with a smile; eyes closed. And by the look of his face, pyjamas were the last thing Edward was concerned about.

"You don't want your pyjamas?" she rose slowly from where she'd crouched beside the case.

"Well its not that I don't want them, just…"


"Well let me put it this way, would you seriously cover up your Rolls-Royce if you had one?" his eyebrows rose smartly, and Bella gave a close-lipped smile at the cheekiness of his metaphor.

"Rolls Royce huh? That's mighty bold of you" she told him as they shuffled into bed.

"Well, I like to be bold" he commented, a glint in his eye. He accentuated a sigh as she let her weight rest on top of him. His hands creeping down to the small of her back.

"Don't get any ideas, I'm sleeping" Bella warned him as she laid her head on his chest.

"I didn't say a thing" he smirked back in a husky voice, his fingertips circling across her skin in the most tantalizing of motions.

It took every degree of self control Bella had not to surrender to him, right then and there, and if history was anything to go by, she may as well have given up before she'd even started. But instead she played her own little game, returning the gesture by shifting her weight on him every so often, her leg slotting down between the gap of his legs; anything to ensure she got a reaction out of him. Which she did.

A moment later Edward snickered. "Yeah, you really seem like you're sleeping by the way you're squirming around all over me. It feels really convincing Bella" he pointed out through a smirk.

"What?" she enquired innocently. "I'm not squirming, I'm just trying to get comfortable" she moved again, knowing it would drive him crazy; she could feel it in fact; the bulge increasing into a mini mountain which pressed against her lower stomach. "If you're fine with being my human mattress, then you'll have to put up with my fidgeting" she played along, enjoying her game. "Maybe next time you should just give over to the pyjamas. Self restraint can be hard at times, and you do seem easily excitable" a devious smile twitched her lips.

Without another word Edward grasped her sides, shifting them both over, and in one swift action Bella was smack on her backside looking up. She gasped at the sudden movement, surprised to see Edward now hovering above her.

He grinned down at her, her cheeks now blazing in full bloom, pleased he'd caught her off guard.

"Now let's see who has better self control, shall we?" he teased, planting a passionate kiss onto her lips before she could retaliate.

Although she strove to hold onto that ounce of wavering self control, Edward's power over her was undeniable, and Bella was gone within the blink of an eye. Completely giving over to him, as she grappled with her underwear between their kisses. She managed to move them down to her thighs, and as her hand pressed into his lower back, her legs spreading apart, he smiled into her lips. Success!

"I thought you were sleeping" he reminded her after pulling away. "I'm inclined to believe you were lying to me".

"Guilty as charged" she told him breathlessly; achingly.

"I figured as much" he noted, kissing the area between her breasts. And the more he did, the fiercer her passion for him grew, surging through her body; nerve endings tingling in torment.

"Must be a pain in the ass being right all the time".

"And exceedingly handsome" he nodded, exaggerating a sigh, "I guess some of us have all the luck".

"Yeah, and some of us don't get any" she told him pointedly, "Care to be of service?" she added, running her foot along his lower leg seductively.

Edward didn't fail to comply. Slotting into her like a hand to a silk glove. She sighed, her eyes fluttering shut at the heightened sensation. "God I missed this".

"Not as much as I did" Edward mumbled into her neck, his lips peppering gradual kisses over her skin. They didn't talk after that; they just enjoyed the exploration of each others bodies, revelling in the fact that for once they weren't 'breaking the rules'.

A/N: Ok, so there we go. A little rushed I know, but I had to give you something!

As of today NSA and COL will be on temporary hiatus for a little while! I hope the break will do me good, especially with COL anyway – I really need to get my muses flowing with that one again! Thanks for reading/commenting! You're all amazing! See you soon =] xxx