Disclaimer: I do not own the Twilight Saga. No copyright infringement is intended.
Author's Note: Well guys, this is it. Thanks for all the awesome reviews and encouragement. It made me happy to hear you guys will miss NASCARward and Driverella. Thanks one last time this story to AgoodWITCH for her support and beta work! I have some other side projects in the works. I'm not sure how soon I will post them though, because I really need to make my original story a priority for a while. I promise you will see me again though ;), and soon…
Krista Voda, veteran sports Journalist sat down to do the interview she had been hoping to snag ever since the announcement came out for the 2011 NASCAR season. She smiled as she settled in across from the two racers sitting in their firesuits, ready to go take part in the Gatorade Duels to decide qualifying placements for the Daytona 500. Both racers were smiling as they held hands between them. Her sight settled on their hands first before moving up to find their gazes locked with one another.
Krista chuckled and glanced to see if the cameraman was catching that so she could be sure to have it spliced into the final reel, which would broadcast the afternoon prior to the Daytona 500, before clearing her throat to capture their attention. They both turned to look at Krista, as Isabella Cullen blushed slightly as she chuckled under her breath.
"Thank you for sitting down to do this interview with me today. I guess we'll just get right to it?"
They smiled and nodded their agreement, waiting for the journalist to begin the interview.
"Last year was a great start for Cullen Racing. Both of your racers finished in the top five for the chase, Edward coming in second in overall points. Do you have any plans to handle things differently this year?"
Edward smiled, rubbing his thumb over his wife's hand as he replied. "Well, this year things will be quite different for us all. Last year my wife here was unable to drive for obvious reasons. I have a feeling we will do even better this year since I will have her back out there with me."
Krista smiled with a nod in Bella's direction as she turned to direct the next question to her. "Yes, this is definitely a banner year, not only for Cullen Racing, but for the Sprint Cup Series as a whole. How does it feel to be the first Mother to ever participate in the Sprint Cup Series?"
Bella smiled, blushing a bit more as she shifted in her seat. "I have to say, it feels really good. Becoming a mother wasn't something I expected this early in my career, but I wouldn't trade it for anything. Our careers make family life a little different than most family units, especially considering that both of our daughter's parents are involved in the career, but we make it work. I'm so happy to have the support system we need to be able to be both an active mother for our child, and still be out on the track this season."
"How do you manage to balance it all?" Krista asked, genuinely interested.
Bella chuckled, pointing out the window to the tall woman with caramel hair playing with a giggling eight month old baby, sporting dark brown ringlets tied up in pigtails with little bows, in her arms. "Like I said; lots of support from a very hands-on Grandma in particular."
Krista laughed at the faces the woman she recognized from tabloid picture the year before as being Edward's mother made toward her granddaughter. "How does your daughter handle traveling so much? Does she handle the changes well?"
Edward and Bella sniggered as they shared a glance. "Actually, being home for two months on the off season was the hard part for Kyla. She spent the majority of her gestation and the first several months of her life on the road. She wasn't happy being home every night." Edward said, casting a loving look out the window toward the infant in his mother's arms. "We're very lucky. She's like us. She has the tracks in her blood."
They talked a little more about the new season before ending the interview so that Edward and Bella could go spend the last hour before the race focusing on the course ahead. As they walked out the door of the trailer together, the little girl across the way saw them squealing out a "Maaaaaamaaaa," as she reached with wigging fingers toward her mother. Bella beamed at her daughter as she took her in her arms, hugging her to her chest and kissing her temple. Edward leaned in to kiss her shortly afterward before introducing Esme and little Kyla to the reporter.
Krista smiled down at the adorable little girl with the striking emerald eyes, which were nearly identical to her father's. They chatted amiably a few more moments before the foursome made their way back to the area where their RV's were parked.
An hour later, Carlisle, who had just retired the week before to spend more time with his family, Esme, and Kyla watched the races from a safe location while Bella and Edward fought for position in the 500 two days later. Kyla squealed and clapped with joy as the cars sped around the track, the rumble of their engines tickling her chest. Her parents did well, securing places toward the front of the pack for the race.
The next morning was chaotic as Edward and Bella spent time with Kyla before they did the autograph thing and got ready for the race. Bella was pleased with how many people seemed so excited to see her back. Many of them told her that it hadn't been the same without her last season.
Hearing things like that always made her feel a little less guilty for dragging her little girl all over the country because of her own love for racing. Sometimes it felt selfish, but when she considered that against she and Kyla being home while Daddy was always on the road, it didn't seem quite so bad. Kyla had Mommy and Daddy most days and almost every night, and had Grammy Esme the rest of the time. In all fairness, Kyla probably had just as much, if not more stability than some kids who have to go to daycare while both parents work outside the home. Instead of Mom and Dad leaving home to go to work, they had a temporary home that always came along with them.
Kyla had her bed, her toys, and a routine that they did their best to stick to no matter where they were. Growing up around the tracks, the sounds of the cars running the track filtering in through the walls of the RV were almost like a lullaby for her now. Bella's only real fear was that Kyla would have a hard time adjusting when the time eventually came when they would no longer race and settle into a regular routine at home. She hoped she wasn't grooming her daughter to have a gypsy mentality, never able to feel at home in a single rooted location.
Once the signings were done, Bella and Edward rushed back to have lunch with Kyla before she would need to lay down for her morning nap. If she got down quickly enough, she would be done before the race started and she, Esme, and Carlisle would be able to watch. It always made them feel better to know that their family was watching somewhere.
Once Kyla was tucked into bed, the two walked down to the tracks, mentally prepared for the race ahead. The race was a blur as Bella adjusted to being on a full track again. It was amazing how much a year off could dull her reflexes. She had practiced of course, but it wasn't quite the same as sharing a track with 42 other cars.
It didn't take long until her body fell into the groove. Her hands and feet did what was needed to make her way through the pack, her husband right behind her. It was also nice to not have to worry about planted saboteurs trying to take her out. Yeah, there was the occasional trade of paint, but nothing like the chaos Daniels had left in his wake.
As the race came to a close, Bella pushed to battle for the lead, finally taking it with ten laps to go. Edward and Bella both smiled when a tiny voice came across the coms. "Maaaaa! Dada! Oom!" Edward and Bella both chuckled before Bella snarked at him through the coms.
"Okay, Cullen, are you even going to try to race, or are you just going to hand this win over on a silver platter? You know it's no fun unless I win straight up. NO givesies!"
Edward chuckled and he went to pass, getting blocked by his sneaky wife. He went to pass again, dropping below her and moving along side as they made their way into the last lap.
"Hold onto your panties, Mrs. Cullen. You're about to lose them in my draft!"
Bella chuckled. "Oh, I hope not. La Perla is not exactly something we want lost in the wind now is it?"
Edward coughed a little as he tightened his hands on the steering wheel. "Oh, Mrs. Cullen, now you're playing dirty. I thought you were a better sport than that. Tsk, tsk."
Bella chuckled as they rounded the last curve and took off along the straight in competition for the finish line. Edward was just barely ahead of her as she focused, trying to beat him by however much she could. They zoomed across the finish line to the sound of their friends and daughter cheering in their ears. "Bella took it by .0052 seconds!" Jasper shouted into the headset. Edward laughed as Bella let out a whoot, pumping her fist as she slid around to get the flag.
Bella made her victory lap before sliding into the winner's circle, happy to see her husband and baby girl waiting for her. She hopped out of the car with a massive smile as she ran to them, hugging her husband as she kissed her daughter's head. Kyla reached for her, sliding seamlessly onto Bella's hip as she smiled for the cameras. Two weeks later, the most adorable cover ever would be pasted on the front of Time Magazine of Edward, Bella, and Kyla, cuddling together with big smiles. The headline would read: NASCAR Family wins Daytona 500. Ten months later a second, very similar photo would grace the cover of nearly every magazine in the country with a headline stating First Mom in NASCAR wins Sprint Cup.