A/N: The usual: Twilight and all recognizable characters belong to Stephenie Meyer. No copyright infringement intended...I just wanted to have a little fun :)
Okay all, here is my newest story to tell. I hope you all enjoy the ride.
Thanks to maniacalmuse for always being my rock and encouraging me and my ideas. You know I love you, bb.
**FUTURE CONTENT WARNING**
This story deals with real-life emotions and affects associated with depression; this includes some references to suicide and extreme emotional distress. Please read with caution and at your own discretion.
When I first saw her walking through the quad of Forks High my senior year, I knew I had to have her. She was a sophomore and new to town. The story circulating her arrival revolved around her coming to live with her father so her mom could go on the road with her new husband. Which, I would later discover to be true.
I'll never forget that first day. I was sitting at a table outside, on one of the rare sunny days our rainy little town has, when I looked up and saw her wander through the crowd of students taking advantage of the warmth. She cast her eyes nervously toward a group of guys tossing a football around, and flinched slightly when Mike Newton almost backed into her as he caught the ball. Truth-be-told, I jolted slightly in my seat in sync with her reaction, also.
She placed a delicate hand over her heart and laughed foolishly at herself as she continued on. Her smile was absolutely breath-taking, and I felt at peace just watching this amazing creature walk in my general direction. Her eyes met mine, and as soon as I saw her draw her bottom lip between her teeth and blush, I knew I had to introduce myself.
I excused myself from my friends, Emmett and Jasper, who looked over their shoulders at whatever it was that had stolen my focus away from them. They smiled while Emmett started laughing and teasing me on finally being ready to give it up. He truly was—and still is—a crass pig, but he's also one of my closest friends.
I punched his shoulder—hard—as I walked past him and made my way to her. As I walked toward her, confusion registered in her eyes and she looked behind her. I offered her a smile as I worked on closing the gap between us. I was a few feet from her when the shouting began.
"Heads up!" My head snapped to the right as I watched the football closing in on her. Its height led me to believe it would easily sail over her head...Tyler Crowley's quickly advancing body, however, was on course for a major collision. His eyes were on the ball, and not on where he was running.
In that moment, I made a snap decision and bolted toward this stunning beauty who had no idea what was about to happen. My experience on the track team paid off as I made it to her quicker than should have been possible. The look on her face was pure confusion and shock as I wrapped my hands around her slender waist and twisted our bodies. Tyler finally noticed us, just as he slammed into my back, and the three of us fell to the ground.
Her body was pinned beneath me; her silky-looking hair sprawled out on the grass. I stared down into her dark brown eyes, concern washing through me as she groaned and reached for the back of her head. "Ooooh. What happened?" she had asked, propping herself up on her elbows.
Tyler hopped to his feet and looked down at us as I helped her to hers. "Bella, I'm so sorry. I didn't see you, and by the time I did, I couldn't stop."
Bella. Her name couldn't have been more perfect.
She wobbled slightly on her feet, so I gripped her firmly around the waist in an effort to keep her upright. "No, its fine. It could have been much worse if not for..." Her words trailed off awaiting my introduction.
"Edward. Edward Cullen," I offered.
"Edward." My name fell from her lips in a breathy whisper, and she flushed a deep shade of crimson. Her legs wobbled a little beneath her again.
"Maybe we should go to the infirmary. Just to be sure you're all right," I suggested gently.
"Um, yeah. Sure."
I kept my arm around her as we walked to the nurse's office. I told myself it was to ensure she stayed on her feet, but deep down I knew it was because I never wanted to let her go.
That was day one. I asked her out two weeks later, and we never looked back.
For our first date I took her on a picnic to a meadow I had stumbled upon several years back. As we sat on the thin blanket, amidst the wild flowers of the early spring, we talked and laughed, sharing every detail of our lives. We soaked up each other's stories as we ate the sandwiches I had packed for us.
Then she laughed. I didn't think anything could beat the melodious sound of her voice, or even how my name sounded when it breezed past her pouty lips, but I was proven wrong when she laughed at a memory of her mother.
"It was ridiculous," she had said. "I mean, my mom has done a lot of crazy things in her time, but sky diving? It took me a month to talk her out of it." She paused to take a breath and get her laughter under control.
That's when I kissed her. My lips brushed hers lightly and I felt a spark as they connected. She pulled back immediately, her startled brown eyes searched mine for an explanation, and I struggled to find the words that could possibly justify my impulsive behavior. "I'm sorry," I whispered. "I just—"
She didn't let me finish. Instead, she leaned forward and pressed her lips to mine. As our mouths moved together, I felt Bella weave her fingers into the hair at the nape of my neck before her delicate tongue peeked out and caressed my lower lip.
As we deepened our kiss, I wrapped my arm around her waist and we fell to the ground, our legs tangled up in one another's. We made out, sprawled upon the blanket, for what seemed like hours. It wasn't usual for me to be so impulsive upon meeting someone, but there was something about her that I just I couldn't tear myself away from. I was drawn to her, like gravity.
We were so wrapped up in the moment as we groped and pulled at each other above our clothes, that we hadn't noticed the sky darkening before the rain started to fall. Bella's lips played up into a smile against my mouth, and she started to giggle when the rain pelted down on her back as she remained on top of me. We stood quickly, our bodies quickly becoming soaked as the large drops assaulted us, and we rushed to pick up our blanket and basket before fleeing for the car, all the while laughing.
Once we were in the car, I turned the heater on in an effort to warm us up. I looked over at Bella as she held her hands out over the dashboard vent awaiting the warm air to filter out. She tilted her head and looked over at me, a small smirk turning the corners of her mouth upward. Her hair was soaked from the rain and fell in damp waves over her shoulders, and water beaded from the ends and fell onto her lap as she ran her hands together against the warm air.
I wondered if it was possible to love somebody with ever fibre of your being after only a couple of weeks. Because I was fairly certain I was falling head-over-heels in love with Isabella Swan.
As soon as we pulled onto the highway, the sky opened up and a torrential downpour had begun, causing the road to disappear. The car ride back to town was mostly silent as I kept my eyes focused on what little I could see of the road ahead of me. I could feel her eyes on me the whole trip, though, and as much as I wanted to pull over and talk to her some more, I knew I should probably get her home.
I pulled up to her house and hopped out of the car. I ran to the passenger side and opened her door for her, draping my jacket over our heads to keep our still-damp bodies from being soaked through once more, and we jogged for the cover of her front porch. She unlocked the door before turning back to me and smiling. We stood for a moment in silence, just looking into each other's eyes nervously.
"I'm sorry," we both said at the same time.
I laughed. "What are you sorry for?"
Her cheeks turned a pale shade of pink, and she pulled that delicious bottom lip between her teeth. "For what happened back in the field. I'm not usually so impetuous. I mean, we just met...and then you kissed me...I don't know. It's all so stupid, really." She dropped her eyes to her feet. "I just feel this deep connection to you. I can't explain it right, so this probably all sounds insane."
I cupped her face in my hands and lifted it gently so her eyes would meet mine. "Not even a little bit. I know exactly what you're talking about," I assured her.
"You do?" She whispered, placing her hands tentatively around my wrists.
I nodded as I leaned in to capture her lips with mine once more. We were inches apart when the front door opened, and her father, Police Chief Charlie Swan, stood in the doorway. He was dressed in his full uniform, gun and all, so I quickly changed course and placed a gentle kiss to Bella's forehead before saying goodnight to them both.
It seemed like we were with each other every waking moment, and we couldn't keep our hands off each other. When the time came for me to apply to colleges, Bella was sullen. That's not to say I wasn't upset as well, but I wanted to go into Psychiatry, and I knew what all that entailed. The sooner I started on it all, the better.
By the time Bella joined me at Dartmouth two years later, I was two years away from earning my Undergraduate degree before I started med school. Dartmouth was an amazing experience for both of us. We really blossomed once we were there.
Two years into my three-year med school degree, Bella graduated from Dartmouth. That was the night I proposed. There was never a doubt in my mind that we'd be together forever, and I was elated when she told me the same thing upon accepting my proposal.
I had waited until we were at dinner with our parents. I had spoken to Bella's parents two weeks prior to that night and asked for their blessing, and they gave it whole-heartedly. The server brought dessert and Bella was just digging into her chocolate cake when I stood up.
"What are you doing?" she asked.
I smiled and looked down at her before looking at all the faces around the table. "I wanted to say a few words."
"About what?" she asked, casting a nervous glance at her parents.
"I'm so proud of you and everything you've accomplished these last four years, Bella."
She looked at me with slight confusion. "Um, thanks?"
"Since that day I saved you from that football in our senior year of high school, I knew that we were fated to be together." I stated with a light chuckle.
Bella's eyes widened in realization. "What the hell do you think you're doing, Edward Cullen?" Her chest began to heave with her heavy breaths. I pulled a small black box from my pocket and dropped to one knee beside her. "Put it away," she hissed.
I laughed and looked her in the eyes as I took her shaking left hand in mine. "Isabella Marie Swan, I can't imagine my life without you. Marry me?"
I opened the ring box and her breath caught in her throat. "It's beautiful," she whispered as she looked down at the half-carat princess cut solitaire ring nestled in the blue velvet pillow. She raised her tear-filled eyes and smiled. "Yes."
My heart soared with joy as I took the ring and placed it on her finger, where it would stay forever. I stood and pulled her into my arms, and our parents started to applaud, which only caused the rest of the restaurant to join in on the celebratory cheers.
I pressed my lips to Bella's, and could feel her smile against my mouth. "Forever, Bella. Without a doubt, you are my forever."
"And you're mine."
We set the date for six months later. December first. After her graduation, Bella stayed in Hanover, New Hampshire while I finished up my final year at Dartmouth. She was able to land a job at a small graphics design company with hopes of starting her own some day.
Getting started on our life together was important, but not as important as starting our careers and putting money away for a down payment on a house.
My older sister, Alice, helped plan the perfect wedding at my parents' house just outside of Forks. Always one for overdoing it, she was the perfect choice. The morning of the wedding Emmett, Jasper, my father, Carlisle, and I all got ready together.
"So, you're actually doing this, huh?" Emmett asked jokingly.
I chuckled as I fastened my tie around my neck. "I really am."
Carlisle approached me and held out a key ring. "Here are the keys to the beach house in California. Your mother and I want you to take Bella there for your honeymoon. We know you two said you didn't have anything planned, so we took it upon ourselves to plan it for you."
"Dad, I…thank you." I took the keys from him and he wrapped his arms around me.
"Congratulations, son. We couldn't be more proud," he told me.
The time finally came for me to head downstairs and wait for my fiancée—I never tired of saying that—to arrive. My parent's sat in the front row, holding hands. My mother was dabbing at the corners of her eyes with a tissue to try and keep her tears of joy at bay.
Once Bella's bridesmaids were in place, the music shifted into the traditional wedding march. My eyes travelled to the top of the staircase and my breath caught in my throat when Bella started her descent toward our new life together. She was stunning in a handmade gown by my sister, and I had to ask Emmett to pinch me, because I was afraid I would awaken at any moment.
Mr. Weber, our Marriage Commissioner, started the ceremony. "Family and friends. We are gathered here today to witness the joining of two people." He continued to talk about the meaning of matrimony and love, but I failed to hear most of it as I took in the exquisite beauty of my soon-to-be wife.
"Bella, do you take Edward, whom you now hold by the hand to be your lawful wedded husband?" Mr. Weber had asked.
With a sniffle and tears brimming her eyes she whispered, "I do."
Mr. Weber then turned his attention to me. "Edward, do you take Bella, whom you now hold by the hand to be your lawful wedded wife?"
The first tear fell onto her rosy cheek, and I brushed it away with the pad of my thumb. "I most definitely do," I breathed.
Mr. Weber smiled. "Now is the time for the exchange of rings."
I turned to Emmett, who reached into his tux jacket pocket and pulled out two simple white gold bands. I plucked the slender silver circle from him and turned back to my Bella. I slid the ring over her knuckle and held it in place as I spoke. "With this ring I pledge my love and commitment." I leaned forward and placed my lips against the ring, making Bella sigh.
Bella reached forward and took my ring from Emmett's hand and slid it onto my ring finger. "With this ring I pledge my love and commitment."
Mr. Weber closed his book and smiled proudly. "It is my pleasure to announce you both Husband and Wife. Edward, you may kiss your bride."
Our first kiss as husband and wife was...incomparable to any other kiss we shared. Tears had begun to spill onto Bella's cheeks as I leaned forward to capture Bella's lips with my own. Bella stretched up onto her toes, throwing her arms around my neck and kissed me passionately.
Feeling nothing but love in that moment, the rest of the world slipped away and we kissed like nobody else was in the room. In fact, it wasn't until Bella's father started clearing his throat that I pulled away.
We turned our bodies to face our guests and made our way down the aisle…into the future.
The rest of the night was a blur of happiness and love as we greeted out-of-state friends and relatives, while still finding those few select moments to steal away for ourselves.
With Bella securely in my arms, we moved in the centre of the dance floor. "Enjoying the party, Mrs. Cullen?"
With a soft giggle, and flush of her cheeks, she said, "That'll take a while to get used to."
"I'm certain we have a while," I assured her as I leaned down and kissed her once more. From all around us cameras flashed, capturing our love forever.
We left before the reception and dance were over since we had a plane to catch. Bella slept the entire way, utterly exhausted from the long and arduous weeks of planning our wedding.
She awoke, only briefly, as we got off the plane and into the town car that would take us to our home for the next few weeks. When we arrived outside the oversized—and incredibly private—beachfront property, Bella's jaw dropped.
"Wow," she whispered as I unlocked the front door.
I looked slyly down at my wife and scooped her up into my arms. I carried her through the house, turning on each and every light as we made our way to the master bedroom. It was large and white with a glass wall that looked out at the ocean.
I set her down on her feet. "I'll go get the bags," I said quietly, suddenly nervous.
Not a lot of people knew this, but this would be our first time together. It wasn't easy getting through five years of pent up sexual frustration, but we had managed because it was something that was important to both of us. That's not to say we didn't do…other things in our time together.
When I returned, I found Bella at the large picture window, staring at the gentle waves as they lapped up against the shore. She saw my reflection in the window and melted into my embrace as I wrapped my arms around her waist and held her close.
She laid the back of her head against my chest and sighed. "Beautiful."
I lowered my lips to her neck and kissed her tenderly. "I couldn't agree more," I whispered as my lips ghosted a trail down to the pale flesh of her shoulder.
Bella slowly turned her body to me, her eyes full of love and apprehension. "I love you, Edward." She must have seen the same emotions in my eyes, because she laid her hands on my jaw and smiled. "We belong together."
"Forever," I replied thickly, lowering my face to hers and kissing her softly.
Bella's fingers found their way into my hair as she pressed her body closer to mine. I lifted her off the ground and spun us around so I could walk us to the oversized bed. I lowered Bella back to her feet and stared into her lust-filled eyes as I lowered my hands to the hem of her shirt.
We worked quickly to undress each other, our nerves from earlier quickly taken over by our hunger for one another. With our clothes discarded, I pulled her body to mine and kissed her with everything I had.
Our hands explored each other's bodies, memorizing each curve of every muscle before we fell onto the bed where we made love…
...and our daughter.
The day Bella told me she was pregnant was one of the best days of my life.
Right before the wedding, Bella and I had found a nice little apartment to rent in Hanover until the spring when I finished school. I had arrived home one Friday evening at five and was surprised to find Bella's truck already in its parking spot. She always worked until six. Always.
"Bella?" I called as I took my shoes off at the front door.
"In the kitchen," she replied.
I walked through the hallway and found Bella sitting at the kitchen table, sipping a cup of tea. I walked to her and placed a kiss upon her temple. "How have you been feeling today?"
She smiled weakly and shrugged. "No better, no worse. Listen we should talk," she said, her face suddenly taking on a very serious—and honestly quite frightening—expression.
My stomach rolled as I pulled the seat out next to her and sat down. "What is it?"
She closed her eyes and took a deep breath in through her nose and exhaled through her mouth. "I love you, obviously, but something's happened."
I couldn't help the multitude of thoughts that crashed through my mind as to what she could be talking about. I swallowed thickly and finally found my voice. "I know that. I love you, too. But, Bella, you're scaring the hell out of me. What's wrong?"
Her brow softened and a small smile started to spread. "Oh, no! It's nothing like that," she said, intuitively knowing what I must have been thinking. She placed her hands on my knees. "I'm pregnant. I know it's much sooner than either of us even expected, but…"
The expression on my face must have scared her, because she instantly pulled her hands back and bit her bottom lip. "I…um, it wasn't on purpose…"
She nodded meekly. "I met with the doctor this morning. He confirmed it. I'm about six weeks along," she said quietly, her voice shaking and her chin quivering. "I'm sorry." She dropped her gaze from mine and I saw a tear fall onto her lap.
I shook my head. "Sorry? Why on Earth are you sorry?"
Her head snapped, and she wiped her cheeks. "Y…you mean you're not mad?"
"Not at all. This is…Bella this is fantastic!" I exclaimed, jumping from my seat and sending it clattering to the ceramic tile. I pulled her into my arms and kissed her.
"Really?" she asked, her tone full of the relief she felt at my reaction.
With a smile and a tender kiss she looked up at me. "You're going to be a daddy."
We called our families immediately to tell them the news.
Bella's morning sickness lasted the first three months, and nothing we did seemed to help. There wasn't much she was able to keep down, and it was starting to concern us, even though the doctor said it was quite normal. Once she hit that second trimester, though, her appetite was back in full force. I honestly don't think I had ever cooked that many eggs in my life. It was all she ever craved for weeks.
If I never saw another egg in my life, that would be fine by me.
Watching her body change with each passing week was the most amazing thing I had ever experienced. The way her stomach grew with the life that was inside of her, the way I would catch her rubbing her protruding abdomen and singing soothing lullabies…
Such beautiful memories.
We tried to find out the sex of the baby at our twenty-week ultrasound, but the baby was uncooperative. Bella was convinced we were having a boy, while I had no preference one way or the other, as long as the child was healthy.
With Bella and I now expecting, it was very important for us to be close to family. So, I had my upcoming residency transferred to Port Angeles and, after I finished up with school, we moved and started house-hunting. It took two days and five houses before we found "the one."
It was love at first sight. It was a newer two-storey home with four bedrooms on the upper floor and a large backyard. There was a den off the main entry where Bella had set up her home office for the graphic design company she had started.
Then came the day Bella went into labour. It was probably one of my more terrifying life experiences. It was September tenth, three days before Bella's twenty-third birthday. I had just walked through the door to find Bella hard at work in her office on her latest project. Not wanting to interrupt her, I headed for the kitchen to start dinner.
I had just pulled out the vegetables from the fridge to start chopping when I heard Bella groan. I stopped what I was doing and waited. I heard the clicking of her keyboard start up again, so I turned back to dinner.
"Ooooh," she groaned again, a little louder this time.
I put the knife down and moved to poke my head into the hall. "Bella?"
"It's nothing. It must have been the Mexican food Alice brought by for lunch. I'm fine," she assured me.
"You know, I have half a mind to talk to her about bringing that stuff over for you when it doesn't agree with you right now," I muttered.
I heard Bella laugh as she continued to work. "You know, as well as I do, that Alice wouldn't listen to you anyway. What the baby wants, the baby gets," she reminded me.
Ten minutes had passed, and I had just cut into the peppers for the salad I was preparing when Bella came hobbling into the kitchen. I looked at her, and my smile quickly vanished as she looked back at me, her eyes full of distress. "Bella?"
"Um, either I just peed myself, or my water just broke." Suddenly her body hunched over, and her knuckles turned white as she death-gripped the fridge handle. "Ooooh my God!" she cried.
I dropped the knife immediately and turned the burners off before rushing to her side. I grabbed her bag that sat by the front door and helped my very pregnant wife out to the car. We rushed through the busy streets, breaking multiple traffic laws in the process. I called our families and friends to let them know what was going on while Bella groaned and practiced her breathing in the background.
When we reached the hospital I helped Bella out and took her inside to be admitted. Once we were in our private room, the labour really kicked itself into high gear, and I had never seen Bella so uncomfortable. Dr. Grenady arrived an hour later and did a quick examination of Bella's stomach.
He finished his examination and looked at us both solemnly. "It would appear that some time in the last week, your baby has flipped into a breech position. We'll have to perform a cesarean."
Bella's worried eyes met mine, and I forced a smile in hopes of reassuring her. Dr. Grenady looked at us and went over everything that the procedure would entail before he left the room to get ready. Nurses came in with a pair of scrubs for me and a blue cap for my hair. They prepped Bella for surgery and then wheeled her off to the OR.
I waited in the hall until the doctor came for me. When I stepped foot in the brightly lit room, I saw my wife lying on an operating table, her arms spread wide and strapped down. There was a blue privacy sheet draped above her chest, and her stomach was bare and exposed.
Nervous, I took my place beside her head and placed a kiss on her forehead to reassure her that everything was going to be fine. The steady sound of the monitors kept me sane while my wife's body moved gently under the doctor's ministrations. I stroked Bella's head soothingly as she smiled up at me.
We sat in silence for ten minutes before Dr. Grenady told Bella there would be a little pressure, and then she gasped. It didn't take long before tears of happiness spilled from the outer corners of her eyes.
"Here she is," he announced.
"She?" I asked, looking down at Bella.
Dr. Grenady moved away from Bella momentarily, and in his arms was a tiny, pink bundle. "Congratulations, it's a girl."
After whisking her away to be cleaned up, the doctors proceeded to finish stitching up Bella before wheeling her to recovery. I went with our daughter to the nursery where I got to help with her first bath and hold her. She opened her eyes almost immediately, and I realized I was staring into Bella's eyes.
I got to introduce Bella to her daughter an hour after her birth. When I walked into the room, holding our baby in my arms, Bella began to cry. I placed our daughter in her arms and sat next to them as Bella got acquainted with her. Bella seemed extremely tired as she held the tiny bundle in her arms.
"So, what are we going to name her?" I asked, hoping to rouse her slightly.
Bella looked up at me with a slight smile. "I was thinking maybe, Renesmee."
I looked at her with an arched brow. "Renesmee?"
"Yeah, after our mothers." She looked at me and pursed her lips. "You don't like it."
I chuckled and looked down at our sleeping daughter. "I think it suits her perfectly." I kissed Bella's forehead softly before I noticed her eyes flutter closed. I took Renesmee from her and held her while Bella rested her head on my shoulder and slept.
Four years later, I stood in Nessie's doorway watching her sleep soundly. Her soft auburn curls framed her cherubic face as she snuggled her little stuffed wolf close to her heart and smiled.
"Hey," a soft voice said from behind me.
I closed Nessie's door before turning to Bella. The moonlight that shone through the window in the hallway cast a silver glow across her perfect features and she offered me an apologetic smile. "You're late." There was no hiding the slight anger in my voice.
She tilted her head to the side and placed a hand on my cheek. "I'm sorry. I'm here now, though."
I brushed past her and headed to our bedroom. Her soft footfalls were heard behind me as she followed. "For tonight," I said, closing the door once she had crossed the threshold.
And like every other night for the last two years, we argued until we were both too tired to say anything else.
A/N: Please review and let me know what you thought! Every reviewer gets a teaser of the next chapter!