Come Take a Walk with Me
After saying goodnight to our family, with Bella's hand in mine, we left the main cabin and slowly walked toward our own. Emmett's thoughts intruded mine for a second after we managed to get several yards away, "Don't do anything I would do."
Since Bella could hear my thoughts and I hers when we touched, my lovely wife sighed and shook her head. She lifted our intertwined hands to press a kiss to my knuckles, though it seemed like an innocent gesture, something in her eyes said it was not.
Something resembling a smirk accompanied a teasing lift of her brow. "He doesn't know that we practiced and did some things before you changed me, does he? And that we broke a bed while I was still human?"
I grinned, laughing as Emmett's sputter came from the cabin we left moments earlier. That was amazing to hear, a speechless Emmett and the laughter of the rest of my family. "He does now." I had my doubts that the information would keep Emmett from making fun of us, but Bella, I was positive, would dance circles around him.
Bella shrugged delicately and tugged me toward the forest. Confused, I cocked an eyebrow in question. "You need to hunt," she reminded me.
After leaving Caleb in his home, I had intended to hunt. It was still astonishing that I managed to refrain from draining the boy myself when I was at my thirstiest in weeks. However, thoughts of Bella, and how I did not wish to be away from her for too long had me running back as soon as possible. It had been a wonderful to see her sitting amongst my family, still shy and unused to the attention she was receiving as a newborn, and as my wife.
As a member of our family.
"I want to see you hunt," she said, her lips twitching slightly in an attempt to hide her smile. Her thoughts were no longer broadcasting, but when I tried to use the shield she claimed I possessed, I could not sense it.
I asked what I wanted to know instead. "Why is that, love?"
She bit her lip. "I'm not sure. I guess I want to see someone as practiced as you hunt. Do you hunt like a bear, or a tiger?" Her walls came down in time for me to see her imagine Emmett taking a swing at a mountain lion, much like a bear would. However, her thoughts disappeared once again.
Allowing her to pull me further into the surrounding forest, I asked if she could open up her mind to me. She tried, but huffed in frustration seconds later. It would take some time for us to develop our powers. I did believe her powers manifested more easily for her when she was calm, as she was in the cabin with my family, and when she or someone she cared for was in danger.
Whatever happened, we would figure it out together.
"My family says I hunt like a mountain lion and that happens to be my preference."
"So you hunt like you eat," she teased. "I would really like to see that." I nodded, because I would love to see her hunt, too. I hated the fact that I had not been there when she first fed. A shiver of desire spread down my spine at my vivid imagination.
"The wolves I fed on smelled like him," she said bitingly, growling slightly under a harsh breath, her free hand clenched into a fist before she continued. "Made it harder to…tolerate their blood, but I was too thirsty to be picky."
"And you did not want to hurt my family," I said softly. We had yet to discuss what happened with Jacob. She had remained quiet as Carlisle explained that they would be sending Jacob's body back to his father for proper burial by his people. She had assured me that she did not resent the fact that I had killed him.
Her only regret on the matter was that Billy, Jacob's father, would suffer the loss of his only son. She possibly also regretted that Jacob had not died by her hands. After the dark threat on her father's life, it was what she had craved to do.
I wanted to change the direction of her thoughts and asked, "Do you think if you are too hungry that your shield would lash out like before?"
She shook her head, dark curls cascading over back and shoulders. "I'm not sure yet. We'll have to see and test it eventually. Especially once I'm reintroduced into society." She lifted our hands up her lips again, watching me closely. "And I meant what I said earlier. I am in no hurry for that."
"I understand that," I replied. "But it is considerably easier to stay in one area for a longer period of time if we pose as students." She sighed, clearly not willing to budge on the subject. "How are we supposed to leave the house and go into town without going to school, too? It would raise suspicions."
"Who said we had to leave the house?" She shrugged again, her brow furrowing. "With today's social media, there is no way we can keep up our cover story. I'm willing to bet that on some website, there are plenty of former classmates that remember you and your family. You are all pretty unforgettable."
I smiled. "Alice has said as much and Jasper has conveniently hacked several sites for that reason."
"You can't hack and erase memories." She waved it away, not wanting to discuss it further. In a way, she was right; eventually we would have to come up with different cover stories, or else stay away from cities and humans all together. Jasper was constantly monitoring websites, and would likely become a full-time job.
"Which way?" she asked, sighing contently as she slid her arm around my waist.
It was hard to believe that we had finally reached a point where we could be together with no issues with her health, or a violent, obsessive wolf looming over our heads.
In a way, everything that it had taken to reach this start of our new life together had mentally exhausted me. As I watched her brow furrow with concern, I knew that I would do it all again, if only to have her with me for eternity.
"Where did you go?" she asked, pulling me into a hard hug that had me grunting in surprise. The smile on her face was a little smug and radiant. She loved the fact that she was stronger than I was, for now.
"Nowhere, really," I replied as I pressed a kiss to her temple. "Only thinking of the path we had to take to be here today."
Her eyes closed for a second and then looked down. "I would change very little, I think." Red eyes, rimmed with black lifted to meet my gaze. "I don't know if we would be here now if I had allowed you to continue to lie to me."
The day in the cafeteria seemed a lifetime ago. She had asked such a simple question, if I would tell her the truth. When I indicated that I would likely not do so, she had walked away from me. Denied me her presence and friendship, and attempted to ignore me.
I was not sure what would have happened if she chose to continue our unorthodox relationship that day, though I did believe we would still be together. There was little chance I would have been successful in staying away from her; at least, not for long.
"I love you," I whispered, pressing my mouth to hers. A small whimper escaped her at the next meeting of our lips, opening enough to entice her to wrap her arms around me fully. Fingers combed through my hair and my own gripped her hips. They tightened at the feel of her tongue against mine, the taste of her there, potent and sweet.
"Edward," she gasped when I pulled away. Before I could get too far, she tugged me back until her lips sucked on my bottom one.
"Bella," I groaned, my thirst replaced by another kind of hunger. She hissed and pushed me away.
"Hunt," she whispered, circling a finger. "I'll follow." My eyes narrowed and wondered how she was able to stop in the middle of that, when there was no reason for it. "It's simple, my love. You feed now, and we can stay in the cabin for the next few days until I need to feed, without interruptions."
I smirked, shaking my head. "I like the way you think."
Sweetly, she said, "Thank you." Then she disappeared into a tree high above us.
"Bella!" I said. "What are you doing?"
"I want to get a good view. I'll follow behind from up here."
Unsure if I should even bother, I remained rooted under the tree only to see her jump into the canopy of another, only a light coating of snow following. I frowned and decided to hunt as usual. It was, after all, what she wanted.
Her thoughts were suddenly clear. "Can you hear me?"
"Yes," I said both in aloud in my mind.
"I can, too. Yay!"
Laughing, I started to run and led her through the trees, smiling as she often whooped in delight whenever she made a good landing. Within sixty miles north of the cabin, we heard the telltale sound of a few heartbeats.
"Not human," she whispered as she dropped down beside me. Looking up the sky at a small break in the thick canopy, she asked, "Can we see the Aurora Borealis from here?"
I rolled my eyes and pulled her to my side. "I know where we can see the Northern Lights, but I thought I was going to hunt." It would take some time before she would stop being easily distracted, however, the idea of watching the phenomenon with her beside me sounded perfect.
She frowned and nodded, jumping once again into a tree overhead. "Go ahead, please."
Despite the fact that she was nearby, my thirst eventually allowed me to focus on the hunt. I honed my hearing, listening for the beating heart of a mountain lion along a snow bank over five hundred feet away. Full from its recent hunt, it lounged beside the base of a tree, lazily flicking its tail. The other hearts near her were thankfully not cubs, since my family abhorred the notion of killing a mother. We were careful never to hunt excessively and to keep the fragile ecosystem from suffering.
As I concentrated on the beat of its heart, the rush of blood through its veins and the soft pants of her slumber, my throat and gut flared with the need to feed. Crouching near a rock formation, I determined my strategy and leapt through the air. I landed beside it and went for the kill immediately, my jaw clamping down on its jugular with half a second.
It protested feebly under my strength, before I ended its suffering with a quick snap of her neck. Blood flowed freely, each pull quenching the hunger that clawed inside me. I groaned, realizing for the first time in hours how much I had needed to feed.
I heard something behind me. It was another heartbeat and a rumble of a questioning growl behind me. Before I could react to the other predator, Bella dropped down on its back, keening softly before she sank her teeth into its neck. My gaze turned to her as she watched me, her eyes like mesmerizing rubies, almost glowing under her long lashes. I heard the snap of her prey's neck as I finished my own.
I dropped the corpse on the ground slowly, rising to my feet, Bella's eyes following my every move. As I took a step in her direction, a low purring growl emitted from her throat. A wave of desire swept through me and I suddenly understood why she was adamant on me hunting first. It was not simply desire to learn from me, but it seemed to heighten her arousal, and as I watched her, my own rose.
I had heard on too many occasions from my family how much the couples enjoyed hunting together, but I had never experienced this elemental level of desire for Bella. It had been there when we met and every day since, but never more potent as she watched me with wild, desire-filled eyes.
It was unexpected, considering it was our first time together. As newlyweds, I wanted that experience to be special and romantic and not a wild tumble in the forest. My hands fisted at my sides, fighting the urge to grab her and do what instinct drove me to do.
She leapt to feet, her eyes still on me as she swept a hand over her bloodstained lips. I bit back the groan that almost spilled forth. "Apparently, I'm a messy eater," she said with a scowl.
I sighed. "It will take some practice." My eyes roamed over her attire, finding exposed skin along her stomach, her chest, and one of her thighs, a visual temptation. Before I could pull her into my arms as I wanted, she asked what we did with the bodies. I showed her how properly to dispose of them by digging them deep in the ground, no shallow graves since it was too risky.
Once done with our tasks, she asked if I was still thirsty. Deciding it was best to hunt so that I would not feel the need for at least a few weeks, I fed on another mountain lion before we set out to our cabin.
"Can we go see it now?" she asked, her shoulder pressed against my side. I wanted to deny her, since there were other things on my mind. However, when she gazed up at me with a soft look in her eyes, I could not say no.
Bypassing the cabin, I led her through the forest at our top speed. I was pleasantly surprised that despite her newborn status, I was still faster. There was a freedom of finally being open about my abilities around her, no longer fearing that I would scare her away. The moment we reached our destination, I managed to capture her before she passed me. "If you go any farther west, you will end up in Russia."
Her laughter was sweet as I wrapped my arms around her from behind. She rested her head back on my chest, looking up at the dark sky above. It was a nice, clear night and the colors of the Northern Lights seemed especially bright. I had seen them on thousands of occasions. I visited the place when I needed to getaway from the rest of my family when we stayed near Denali Park.
"They are beautiful tonight," I whispered as the wind started to pick up. No longer threatened by the elements, Bella remained safe within my arms.
"Does that mean they weren't before?" There was a hint of confusion in her voice, but also curiosity. The colors overhead rivaled that of a rainbow, some unseen by the human eye.
"Of course," I replied, kissing her temple and wrapping my arms around her tighter. "Only now, they are even more so, since you are with me."
She sighed softly, almost melting against me. "You say the sweetest things sometimes."
I smiled, my lips pressing to her silky hair. "I am speaking the truth."
Her hands moved over mine on her stomach, lifting them off slightly so that she could turn within my hold. Her eyes met mine before falling to my parted lips. Unable to resist such a tempting offer and her blatant desire, I kissed her. It only took a second for it to become so much more. Hands roams, teeth tested skin, tongues tasted and our mutual moans filled the air around us.
She panted as she pulled away after several minutes. "I'm ready to go back to our cabin." I dipped down for another chaste kiss, and then intertwined our hands as I pulled away. After we had gone several yards, she let go and ran ahead of me, laughing as she widened the gap between us.
There was no doubt about it. Bella would always keep me on my toes. I pumped my legs and picked up speed, bypassing her and reaching the small porch of the cabin before her. A smile perched on my lips as I leaned against a post, waiting. She caught up, coming to a stop a few feet away. She shook her head, laughing at me.
My arm extended as I offered her my hand, which she took immediately. A slight tug had her in my arms, hers wrapped around my shoulders. Our eyes locked, her nose brushing along mine.
I tapped the front door with my shoe, only to find a hundred lit candles on various surfaces throughout the large room. Bella gasped softly, nuzzling her lips against my ear.
"I do not deserve the credit for this," I said, knowing I owed someone big for this.
Bella inhaled deeply, giggling, her eyes widening. "Tanya!" I was relieved to find there was no animosity between Bella and the one persistent vampire in my family.
Surprise filled my voice. "I think that is her way of saying…"
With a smile, Bella completed my sentence. "Welcome to the family." Sighing softly, she pressed her forehead against my temple, kissing my cheek. "I love your family already. I never knew having a big one would feel right." She shrugged. "I love you, Edward. Thank you."
Confused, I pulled away enough to look in her eyes. "For what?"
"For loving me, for existing," she murmured.
I pressed my lips to hers. "Before you, I was simply existing, living day to day, but not really living." I settled her onto the floor, holding her close, my hands spanning her hips and lower back. "Now that you are a part of my existence, I can finally enjoy my life."
She kissed me again, and before I could deepen it, she sighed. "You always know what to say." Stepping away from me, she pointed toward the bathroom. "I have blood and animal stink all over me. I need to shower." Since she did not ask me to join her, I nodded.
Once the bathroom door clicked closed, I searched the room for our belongings. During Bella's transformation and our move after the near destruction of the other cabin, Alice had brought over our belongings. It was not much, and I hoped that my sister had thought to bring us more. If Bella continued to hunt as she had earlier, she would tear up most of her clothes in a couple of weeks.
A shiver of awareness and desire moved through me again at the thought of our hunt. I shook it away; we had plenty of time to explore those possibilities another time. For the moment, I wanted to make love to my wife as she deserved.
A touch of nervousness crept through me. I never had seen my virginity as a burden, despite how much my brothers had teased me. To me, it was not something to give away to someone that I did not love, and especially to "get it over with," as Emmett had often commented through the years.
The good thing was that this time, when I lay Bella down in our bed, I would not have to worry about hurting her, giving into my thirst, or be constantly calculating in my head. Our previous experiences, though limited and too few, were wonderful, I knew it would be different.
I stripped down, dressed quickly when I found another pair of sleep pants, and folded everything else. There was nothing for me to do, since there was a fire roaring in the hearth nearby, there was no need for sustenance for at least a couple of days, and in the end, there was nothing to worry about our night.
Yet, soon I was pacing near the foot of the bed, my fingers carelessly sweeping through my hair. Bella's shower had ended almost three minutes earlier and she had yet to emerge.
Had she changed her mind? Was she as nervous as I was? Was she not ready? Another thought crossed my mind, one that said she escaped through the window to quench her thirst on a human. However, I immediately pushed it away.
First, I believed in her and knew that she genuinely did not want to hurt a human. Second, I would have heard her.
If that was the case, what was keeping her?
"Don't be a coward," I heard her say in the softest of whispers, as she placed her hand on the door handle. The reassurance that we were still on the same page emptied all negative thoughts from me. My shoulders relaxed and I remained beside the bed, waiting and anticipating her return.
The door opened, and preceding her was a long length of her right foot and calf, all smooth skin, milky white and slim. Her feet were bare, her toes painted a pale pink, apparently courtesy of Alice.
Another thing I had to thank my sister for was the white negligee that graced my wife's sweet frame. It reached only an inch above her knees, trimmed with delicate lace. My eyes continued to roam over her exquisite body, along the curves of her hips, modestly covered in silk. The fabric was transparent enough to make out the seam between hip and thigh, forcing me needlessly to swallow. Slim lace cutouts curved along her sides, giving me a tantalizing glimpse of the side of her breasts. At the neckline, it dipped only slightly, and though the cooler temperature did not bother her, arousal temptingly hardened her nipples. From where I stood, I could see the color of them beneath the silk. They were a deep pink that I knew matched the exact shade of her lips.
She was too far away and I quickly remedied that by offering her my hand. In the space of half a second, she was in arms, my lips were on hers, and finally, I was able to hold onto her as tightly as possible. I basked in something as simple as an embrace, partnered with a sweet kiss that quickly escalated as our passion grew.
"Edward." A sweet moan tumbled from her lips. One of my hands cradled the side of her face, my fingers slowly ascending to her luxurious hair. My groan was breathless against her ear as her hands skimmed over my abdomen. Breath lingered on skin, our bodies pressing closer as we stepped toward the bed. Limbs tangled, sheets pushed aside as her head lay on an ivory pillow. Her glorious hair fanned around her shoulders and face, and I had to stop long enough to see all of her. I groaned at the feel of her beneath me.
A smile pulled up each corner of her beautiful lips, and I had to sample them again. Something akin to a giggle-gasp slipped for her mouth before I hurriedly kissed her. I pulled back, shaking my head laughing and kissing her, whispering, "I love you."
Her smile softened, her fingers playing with the hair at the nape of my neck, her eyes dropped to my lips again as she pulled me down for another kiss. She stopped me, only a hair's breadth away, and she whispered, "I love you, always, Edward."
Our mutual moans filled the air, accompanied with soft words. Her beautiful negligee fluttered to the floor within a few minutes, and I filled my hands with her breasts. Hers wandered along my back. She arched beneath me, asking for more. My mouth descended, nipping at skin, tasting the softness beneath my tongue. Another laugh moved through her when she slid her leg around my hip, pulling me forward and I grunted at the force, hissing at the contact. She was warm between her thighs, and my hips were almost flush with hers.
"Careful there," I whispered against her nipple. She moaned softly, nodding as she loosened her hold on me. "Slow, love."
Her hands moved across my shoulders, down my back as I continued to tease the pink tip of her breast. I loved that she could freely touch me, and I no longer had to worry about hurting her. If I lost control now, she would likely be right there with me. However, I wanted our first time to be about who we were and not what we were.
"Edward," she gasped at the feel of my teeth testing her fragrant skin. She smelled so good as a human, but her scent as a vampire drove another desire to the surface other than bloodlust. She smelled the same, only sweeter. I loved it. I wanted to taste every inch her, marvel the way my hands moved across her smooth skin, and feel her quake under my questing fingers.
I pulled enough away to cradle her hips in my hands, watching my thumbs brush back and forth on her hips. I looked up to see her face, to find her looking at me with a shy smile. Her gaze dropped down, and I did the same, only slower. My eyes skimmed over porcelain skin, lingered on her chest, and dove toward her navel. There was a quiver at the small curve there, my fingers traced around the tiny indentation, my brow furrowing.
"No regrets," she whispered. She had read the momentary thought of not being able to give her a child that crossed my mind for only an instant. I nodded; she was right, no regrets.
Offering her a smile, I pressed a kiss to her stomach, a shiver running through her, the slight vibration on my lips. I groaned, having caught the scent of spiking arousal.
I watched my hands slide up the insides of her thighs. Her legs shook around my hips and loved that, despite her strength, she still became weak in the knees at my touch. I felt the push of her shield suddenly, and I looked up to find a playful scowl on her lips.
Coyly, I smirked and kissed her mouth before my fingers slipped over the trimmed curls between her thighs. It was different from the first time I touched her but she seemed extremely more responsive. She moaned that the touch of my thumb across her most sensitive and softest skin.
Like the first time, I skimmed, tested, and touched to find what she loved most. I captured soft sighs, keening cries with my lips, and watching as she fell apart beneath me.
"Edward," she gasped, her chest arching toward my mouth. It was invitation that I was unable to deny and sampled at the hardened nipples calling to me. One of her hands tugged on my hair slightly, a whispered plea answered with another kiss.
I slipped a hand under her shoulder, grasping the back of her neck, my fingers tangling into her silky hair. Her neck exposed for my exploration, where I licked and kissed around my bite, my mark.
"Oh God," she moaned at the growl that rumbled from my chest. I lifted my mouth from her neck, panting, and desperate to look in her eyes at that very moment. Her bottom lip quivered. Her eyes opened wide, their color as beautiful as the rest of her. She gasped as I pushed slightly inside her. Her trembling lip turned into a quaking one, her eyes rolling closed with every rock forward of my hips.
"Bella," I groaned, unable to take my eyes off her. Her mouth parted with my name, before she was able to meet my gaze. "I love you."
We moved together slowly, at first. Hips rolled, rocked, and thrust until words seemed to fail us both. It was wonderful and as maddening as the first time I touched her intimately.
I thought it would be impossible to be any better. The feel of her arms encircling me, chest to chest, legs twined together, exploring fingers, I felt surrounded.
I was wrong.
Suddenly, her shield was down. I read her pleasure from her thoughts and she read mine. I could see myself through her eyes. The same inner glow she showed me during her transformation, the light she claimed was my soul was bright and golden. I gasped her name, and found the same glimmer emanating from her. Was it my shield that allowed me to see her like this? Whatever it was, she was even more beautiful than ever.
Our mutual groans escalated, our bodies quickening, the bed cracked beneath us, but it mattered little. Her hands, afraid she would hurt me, twisted in the sheets. The silk was no match for her fingers, tearing within seconds. I showed her how much I loved her, what I wanted to do with her, and in turn, she shared her imagination with me.
I groaned, pressing my face against her shoulder, my mouth on her neck. My breath and lips ghosted over my mark again, and she cried out, clenching around me. My body shuddered, seizing for a moment as I let go inside her. It was blinding, perfect, and beautiful.
Minutes passed and I remained with my head on her chest. Her fingers played with my hair, her mind once again closed. My hand ran down her thigh, my gaze resting on another of my bites there.
"Do you think it will always be like this?" she whispered, her hand moving across my shoulders.
"I have no doubt about it."
She laughed softly. "I'm glad you feel that way." I looked up to find her smiling shyly.
"Why is that?"
She surprised me, instantly changing our positions. I groaned as her mouth moved down my chest, nipping gently at my navel.
"Bella," I grunted as she straddled my hips.
"Because I want to do that again," she bent to kiss me again, whispering, "And again, and again."
I laughed and ran my hands up her naked back. She was so small and slight in my arms, yet her strength was incredible. I cradled her face as we kissed again and I sat up to hold her better, moaning as she took me inside her.
We never tired, only breaking long enough to change positions or take advantage of shower. As I tended to the fire, wanting to watch light from it dance across Bella's skin, I thought about the future.
I knew that despite the success of the last few days, the next year of Bella's life as a predator would be hard on her, and us. The best I could do was to keep my promise. I would do what I could to stop her from hurting others, human or vampire. When she was ready, we could join the masses and go back to high school or college so that I could keep another promise I made to myself. I wanted for Charlie and Renee to see their daughter graduate. Eventually, I hoped that she would continue my family's charade, but if she did not, we would find a compromise.
I wanted to share so much with her. Show her my childhood home, visit all corners of the Earth, and watch it with different eyes for the first time, through hers. If she was truly seeing my soul, it was because of her that it glowed. She loved me despite my flaws, and I would endeavor to love her for the rest of my existence.
Two years after Jacob was gone and Bella became an immortal, life was getting better day by day, but it had not been easy since that first night. Twice since then, she encountered a human scent in the wilderness of Alaska and she nearly killed someone at the hands of her bloodlust.
Each time was unique and left my family and us reeling after. The first incident was two months after her transformation. Her shield had lashed out when she went after a hermit we heard rumors of before, but never were able to determine if he lived in the area or not through the years.
Bella and I had been hunting, Jasper and Emmett joining us since neither of them were doing well since they almost attacked Caleb and had to hunt more often. The man we came across was older, at least sixty, though in decent shape and had been collecting from a fish trap in the nearby river. Bella had gone on instinct and it took all three of us to hold her back until he left, but her shield protested against our restraining arms and started to grow in intensity. When it finally unleashed itself, Jasper and Emmett immediately collapsed, having drained them of their energy. My own shield protected me from the brunt of hers.
Jasper and Emmett had been out for hours before Carlisle spoon food them some blood, and along with a jolt of energy from Bella, had returned to normal. Since then, everyone was cautious of her and she had been so guilt-ridden by what happened, she refused to talk to anyone but me or to leave the cabin for over two weeks. It was not until I insisted that she was risking more by not feeding that she finally relented and started to hunt again.
The second time, it was thirteen months after that first night in her new life that we decided to test her since she had been able to be within smelling distance of the village and not be tempted to attack anyone.
We managed to walk down the main road, even purchase something in one of the stores, when a familiar voice called her name. Caleb and his mother were there, too, and it was obvious that the boy had not forgotten either of us. Olivia, his mother, was cautious and wary of us, and had asked how we knew him when Bella read her thoughts. We realized she was hiding bruises under her makeup. A man she was dating for a few months was drunk when he took out his being laid off from work, on her and even turned on Caleb. It explained the bruises on his arm.
Bella's shield immediately lashed out, putting every human to sleep in the store, including the Olivia and the boy. I had to catch them, allowing her to escape before I could do anything. Her thoughts focused on the man's face in Caleb's mind. She had gone after him because he dared to lay a hand on the small family. If it had not been for Alice and Carlisle, who watched from nearby, Bella would have torn him apart.
I had to leave Olivia, Caleb and the others in the store to help her and my family. She kicked and screamed as I dragged her into the woods, our mutual shields putting everyone in the area to sleep and draining my family in seconds.
She was in such a state that I had to use the tried and true method of distraction on her. I made love to her on the forest floor. Emmett, to this day, still would not let us live that down.
It took considerable amount of ingenuity for Alice and Carlisle to come up with a plausible reason for the entire town to become unconscious at the same time. We could no longer visit after that, since it was too risky.
From the beginning, it was obvious Bella had formed an attachment on the boy, and if he was hurt in any way, it angered her too much to be in town with him. She did have me start a college fund for the child and created a false life insurance policy to benefit his mother, and in turn, Caleb.
Another tough transition was my family. It was not easy for Bella. Before it had been mostly just her and Renee, then Phil appeared, and two became three. When she moved to Forks, it was only two again. She hated the loss of privacy the most. On more than one occasion, her easily distracted mind and quick newborn temper had ended with Emmett crying out in pain. He actually found it amusing, and as Carlisle had mentioned, his antics were teaching us how our powers worked. It was an ongoing discovery and learning experience that we knew would take years to master.
We shared our abilities, but some were easier for me as others were for her. I could read minds using the shield up to five miles away and I could block them out due to it, as well. Bella could use hers as a weapon much better than I could, and use it to heal. I still could not do that well, not that we had much chance to use that gift.
If we touched, our shield's power amplified and my mind reading capabilities were enhanced even further. I could read all memories, not just those foremost in their minds. Eleazar and Carlisle were more determined than ever that no one outside of our family knew of our capabilities. With our powers, and Alice's and Jasper's, it was likely that Aro would stop at nothing to have us.
A couple of weeks after Carlisle sent a letter to Italy, there had been a moment that Aro had made the decision to send someone to visit us. By the time the vision finished in Alice's thoughts, it had disappeared just as quickly. Since then, on occasion, the same thing would happen.
We hoped it would be years, possibly decades before he solidified his decision to send someone to see us or ask Bella and me to visit. All of that helped us to decide to leave the family one day and travel. We would visit them when we could.
It was for the best, until then there was something else we had to accomplish.
Bella emerged from our bedroom, our cabin now finished to resemble a cottage found within the pages of a fairytale. We were nestled in a forest near Rochester, New York, and the main house where the others stayed sat several hundred yards away from our home. It was something we insisted on since Emmett still antagonized Bella when he could. The skinny dipping incident still left my wife on edge whenever the oaf mentioned how he caught us. Rosalie had on a few occasions asked her to knock Emmett out when he was being especially annoying.
Personally, I loved watching my Bella put him in his place. She was no longer a newborn and she was still more formidable than he was, and at her mere five-four stature. Another lesson he had not learned was that I could still kick his ass, now more than ever, and without having to lay a finger on him.
"Your mind is going a few hundred miles a second," she said, grabbing her backpack. Lifting it high, she scowled at it before she slipped it over a shoulder. "Tell me again why we have to go back to high school."
I laughed, rising from the couch. The journal and pen I was writing in dropped to the cushion before I joined her across the room. My arms wound around her, kissing her lips softly.
"Your parents are desperate to see you," I reminded her. "You know the video calls are no longer enough. They miss you."
She shrugged, her hands sliding up my arms to wrap around my neck. "For them to see me graduate, I need to attend school. I get that, and I want them to have that. But what I don't get is why we have to start as freshman."
"The longer we can stay in the area, you know this," I murmured, kissing her again.
She snuggled up against me, laughing. Her eyes widened slightly and bit her lip nervously. "Sorry, I know and it makes sense. I just hate high school and worse, I can read minds. I do not want to know what hormonal teenagers are thinking, or worse, the teachers." She shuddered in my arms.
She had right to worry. The teachers were prone to fantasizing about us, too. "And that is the reason why we have been working hard on blocking out thoughts. You have a hang of it, you'll be fine." My hands slipped down her back, spanning her hips to pull her closer. "Now, I think we have a little time," my fingers started on the buttons of her blouse, loosening each one quickly, "Before we have to leave."
She hummed as my lips started to trek down her throat. "I just got dressed."
"Don't worry, I'll help you get redressed…later," I whispered, kissing her hungrily. I felt her laugh against my lips before it turned into a sweet moan. She stilled when her jeans tore beneath my desperate fingers and pulled back, sighing.
"Again," she grumbled. "That's my third pair this month." I shrugged, attempting to add as much innocence to my face. "If I didn't know any better, I'd say you were still showing off to Emmett and Jasper."
My thoughts safely guarded, I only smiled at her, following as she made her way to our bedroom. "I hardly see throwing out torn clothes as showing off."
She looked over her shoulder at me, her eyes narrowing. "And the fourteen beds we've broken, the thirty two windows we've replaced, and six drywall patches we've done since we moved here are not part of you showing off?"
"Of course not, love." She shrugged. It was an indication that she accepted my answer. She did not even question the fact that my thoughts were no longer readable to her. Following closely behind her, I helped remove her ruined jeans and into a new pair, much later.
I loved helping her dress as much as getting her undressed and I strived to do it as often as possible. As she sat in the passenger seat beside me, I knew she enjoyed it, too. I wondered briefly if we could leave the campus for lunch.
"Edward," Jasper groaned in the back seat. "Will you please stop?"
Alice laughed and said, "Maybe it would be best not to ride to school with the two of you in the mornings for a while."
"Try like ever," Jasper murmured, kicking the back of my seat.
Bella's eyebrow rose as our eyes met. "I can guess what Jasper was feeling from you," she said, smiling as I pulled up to our new school. Emmett and Rosalie's jeep slid into the parking spot beside us a second later.
Together, we exited our vehicles, gaining the attention of every student in the courtyard nearby. "So, are they already talking about us?" Emmett asked, his hand clasping around Rosalie's fingers.
"There are a few rumors already flying around," I replied, draping my arm over Bella's shoulder. I looked down at my wife, kissing the tip of her nose. "It should be an interesting day."
Emmett gave me a Cheshire like grin. "If you hated the things they said about Bella before, now, you'll downright want to kill someone."
"Doesn't help that Alice dresses her," Rosalie said, winking at Bella. "She rocks those skinny jeans."
I was not sure when their relationship changed. Perhaps Caleb, the young boy neither of them could forget, was the catalyst.
"Can you all stop talking as if I'm not right here?" Bella growled, breathing deeply to calm down.
"I'm sorry, love," I whispered and pressed a kiss on the top of her head. "Everyone is feeling a little nervous about your first day."
"I know," she sighed, attempting to smile. "Come on, let's go to school."
"That almost sounded enthusiastic," I teased as I led her toward the school office.
"Sorry," she thought. "I'm trying and I don't like how you talk now."
"For the act, yeah, yeah," she said, taking my hand. A mischievous look entered her eyes. "Promise me that, after school, you'll take advantage of our parts as young, naïve, hormonal teenagers and go park somewhere."
"As opposed to any other day you two are young and hormonal," Emmett snickered and grabbed her around the waist, hauling her over his shoulder. She screamed, slapping his back. "You're the best, sis," he said aloud to help with our story. He punched my shoulder when I rolled my eyes. There were better ways to establish ourselves within the student masses. He confidently strode the rest of the way toward the office, earning a lot of questioning glances. At least they knew that they were siblings.
"He is going to be a pain this year," I groaned and followed behind them.
Jasper patted my shoulder and smiled. "Try the next twenty."
"Bella," I said, only loud enough for our kind to hear. "Would you like to visit the island soon?"
Her head popped up, propping herself on her hands that rested on Emmett's wide back. "Can we leave tomorrow?" Confusion furrowed her brow. "The family has an island?"
"I'll see about arrangements, love."
Hours later, our siblings ahead of us, I walked along with Bella toward the cafeteria. She pinched my side. "What was that for?" I asked.
"Edward Cullen, you've been holding out me," she hissed from under the eve of the building.
The island. I had not mentioned it to her before, mainly because I wanted to save it for a special occasion and some alone time.
I growled, pulling her toward me. "You have no idea. I want you to myself."
She sighed at the lingering brush of my lips after a minute of kissing her, nowhere near enough. "I can't believe we're right back to where it all started," she said, looking inside the cafeteria that was similar to the one at Forks High. "Well, almost."
I smiled down at her and whispered, "We could always redo that day."
She shook her head. "I don't see how it would've turned out any different."
"We'd still be together," I agreed. It was true; no matter what changed in our past, I fully believed we were meant to be.
She waited as I opened the door for her. Together, we entered into the next phase of our lives. In four years, she would seal two invitations to send to her parents for our graduation. After that, we could do anything her heart desired, and go anywhere. What that was, did not matter as long as she was always beside me.
A few hundred thoughts bombarded us from all sides as we walked toward a table, but as her fingers slipped into mine, a bubble formed around us. In our own little world, we only heard each other and I hoped it would never change.
"Forever," her thoughts whispered. "I will love you forever."
"I love you," I said aloud. I lifted our intertwined fingers to my lips, kissing her there. "Forever."
AN: I'd like to thank kyla713 for all your help and hand holding you've done throughout this story. Thanks for joining me on this little adventure. Thanks to those that recommended and reviewed my story. You mean a lot to me. If you have any questions please ask, and I'll do my best to answer them.
I know some of you expected to see more happen with the Aro and the Volturi, but if Bella and Edward leave the family, the Cullens would be less of a threat to them and they wouldn't need to visit. At least that's how I see it. I never intended this to go as far as it had, but it was fun to write.
I'll be offering a pdf/mobi/epub version of this in the next few weeks. Check my profile if you'd like a copy soon. Thanks! Now, I have to decide what other WIP I should work on besides Punch Me, Love Me, Save Me. Hmmm