A big thank you to ignore common sense, Kirsty, A is for Angel, Jen, Caroleg, lilmstran, majolevi, zoe, JJ1234, weaknessisour-strength, Robsten345.
Shaynalane you can see that I tried to thank you in the last chapter but for some reason when I loaded to document your name got deleted, so this time i'm not using the full stop, I hope it works. Thank you for reviewing chapter 2.
Robsten thanks for the PM I hope you like this chapter!
Everyone enjoy there's lots of Bella and Edward interaction woo hoo!
Bella kept her eyes on Illyssa throughout the day. She was happy to see her playing with her friends again. At least she didn't have to worry about the little angel anymore. However there was still a feeling of panic there, she couldn't identify what it was. When four o'clock came around she realised that it was because she didn't want to see him again.
He had tried to be perfectly sweet that morning but he reminded her so much of James. It had been a rollercoaster of violence then kindness, violence then kindness and she didn't want to feel like she was being pulled in so many emotional directions ever again. Not to mention that she felt like a disgusting blob in front of him. When he looked at her she was so aware of her stomach and her thighs and that he was tall and muscular and had the body of a Greek god.
Yes she'd admit that he looked gorgeous. She'd admit that he obviously loved his daughter. But in all other respects he was clearly an arrogant jerk. Nothing like his father.
After telling Angela the whole story of what happened on Friday night and then that morning, she had agreed that Bella should stay in the office around five o'clock and that she would handle the parents who came to pick up their children then, alone.
This plan didn't work. When Edward arrived he was determined to talk to Bella again. He had thought about her all day, his mind had kept wandering back to her full lips and her creamy skin that he had longed to touch. When he had turned around to see her that morning, he barely recognised her. He turned back around, thankful that their conversation about the picture on the wall had allowed him to do so to hide his body's obvious reaction to her beauty.
But that was not all he thought of. Her tone, body language and sharp words had clearly shown her hatred and fear she felt around him. He didn't know why he cared so much but he desperately wanted to change her perception of him.
Ten minutes after five Bella heard a knock at the office door, she assumed it was Angela there to tell her that she could come out because Dr. Cullen had gone. Her eyes went wide when she was greeted by the very person she was trying to avoid. She quickly composed herself.
"Can I help you?" she asked making it clear that he was interrupting her.
Edward chuckled at her feistiness.
"Can I come in Ms. Swan? I was hoping we could talk, I won't be long."
Bella opened the door wider to let him in and turned around.
"I suppose I could work and talk at the same time," she answered with her back to him as she walked back to her desk. She tried to think of something she could do to make herself look busy. She decided to print out a notice she had written for all the parents about a dress up day they were going to have in a month.
She sat at her desk her eyes focusing on the computer screen but her other senses where fully aware of him. She heard him move closer into the room but then stop abruptly. She waited for him to say something as she clicked away on the mouse trying to find the right folder on the desktop that contained the notice. He didn't say anything for a long moment and curiosity got the better of her. She turned to look at him. He wasn't looking at her, he was staring at the waste basket in the corner of the room with a frown upon his face. There sticking out of the basket were the yellow roses he had given to her that morning. She honestly hadn't expected him to see that but now that he had, she wondered what his reaction would be.
He turned to her and gestured to the bin. "So you don't like flowers huh?" he said in a friendly tone. He smirked cockily when he saw Bella's cheeks turn a light shade of pink. She was embarrassed. Even though she disliked him, she knew that she came off as rude in this situation.
"Not when they come with apologies no," she answered truthfully and then added, "I'm sorry Mr. Cullen you weren't meant to see that."
He didn't seem to care. "Please, call me Edward," he said looking directly into her eyes. She hated herself for looking back because once she did she couldn't seem to tear them away from his beautiful green ones. After a long pause she replied.
"I'd rather not Mr. Cullen."
She wanted to gain back the control she felt herself to have lost in his presence.
He chuckled and turned to gaze back in the direction of the discarded flowers.
"So what is it about them that offends you? Do you not like roses? Do you not like the colour yellow? Or is it the more obvious answer? Do you not like the person who gave them to you?" He looked at her expectantly with a teasing glint in his eyes.
"Why do my motives even matter to you Mr. Cullen?" Bella asked sharply.
He chuckled. "I just don't want to make the same mistake next time, maybe you prefer chocolates? Or jewellery?"
Bella's temper flared at this as she remembered how James would apologise with those very things.
"Next time?" she snapped and stood up her hand leaning on the desk in front of her. She moved around the desk folded her arms and leant her back against the front of it. "So you plan on making your disgust of my appearance clear again while also implying that I'm a slut?"
Bella's cheeks where red with anger. A part of her knew that she was being dramatic but she didn't care, this was the release that she needed. She wanted to let out the anger that had been brewing inside her since her relationship with James, an anger that had reignited when Edward had verbally abused her.
Edward's teasing smile disappeared immediately. "No – I, of course not!" His breathing became harder.
"Oh so you're just going to threaten to withdraw Illyssa from here again?" As she took a deep breath she knew she was being childish. He had come in here to talk to her and even when he saw that she had thrown his flowers out he hadn't acted like he was insulted. He had only teased her about it. She didn't like him, he was a jerk, but she was in her workplace and she should be acting like a professional.
"No, as I said this morning she loves it here!" He stated firmly. His eyes bore into hers waiting for her next attack.
Bella nodded looking down, she had to get a grip. Edward sighed.
"Look, Ms Swan – " Edward began with a soft tone.
"Jealousy or decrease of love," Bella interrupted in a small voice.
"I – what?" he asked, confused.
"Jealousy or decrease of love," she repeated. "That's what yellow roses mean."
"Oh," he said not really knowing how to respond, but after a while he smiled. She had calmed down. "Do they have a flower that means 'I'm sorry for being a complete dickhead?'"
Bella smiled slightly but her eyes were still cast down. Maybe he wasn't so bad after all. He hadn't walked out just then as she had exploded irrationally.
"I hate it when apologies come with gifts," she explained softly in a voice that indicated she was thinking about a memory of hers. She looked up at him. "It means that the person isn't willing to acknowledge what they've done because they are trying to lessen their guilt. If a person is truly sorry they would bare that guilt and wear it as their own."
Edward stood frozen, mesmerised by the passionate woman before him. Her eyes shined so brightly as she spoke, never doubting her words. His eyes noticed that a lock of her hair had fallen across her cheek and he watched as her hand automatically moved up to tuck it behind her ear. He wished that he was brave enough to step forward and do that for her, though he knew that such an action wouldn't be received well.
"Can I ask you a question?" she asked quietly while looking him firmly in the eye. Edward blinked in surprised.
"You can always ask," Edward answered, curious as to what she would ask him.
Before she began she cleared her voice nervously.
"Well, uh, obviously, I've read Illyssa's file. It says that you adopted her when she was 6 months old and well, honestly..." Bella hesitated before continuing. "I was wondering why?"
"Because you don't think I'm a good father," Edward stated frowning.
"No!" Bella jumped in quickly to contradict him. "I – it's just, you're a young doctor. To move up in your world you have to put in the hours...like taking regular 24 hour shifts don't you?"
"I'm guessing you had to take off a lot of time in Illyssa's first few years, especially since you're a single parent. It just doesn't really make any sense that you would sacrifice your career like that."
"I know," agreed Edward. "That's exactly what my parent's said when I told them I was adopting her."
"So then why - "
But Edward cut her off this time.
"Ms. Swan, I met Illyssa's birth parent's in the middle of a car crash. Well no that's not true, her father was dead by the time I got there."
Bella's eyes were wide but she remained silent.
"Back in Chicago, I had passed out on the couch in front of the TV after an extremely long shift when I heard the crash. It was a few houses down from me and when I got there the father was dead. I was able to pull Illyssa out easily - she was miraculously unharmed. I was able to get her mother out too and she was conscious. But she was losing a lot of blood and I couldn't stop it. As she lay dying she begged me to make sure that her baby would be safe."
Bella nodded letting out a breath she had been holding. What an amazing man. She couldn't deny that his willingness to drop his career for a baby he didn't know was angelical. She didn't understand him. She paused before she spoke again. "But that didn't mean that you had to adopt her. Social services could have taken her. Why take on that responsibility?"
Edward didn't look up, instead he stepped forward and ran his index finger along a photo frame on the desk which had a picture of Bella and Angela in it from their college days. Bella stepped sideways so as not to be so close to him. His cologne was intoxicating.
"Because," he sighed. "I moved from foster home to foster home every year for four years since I was three years old and I wanted to spare her that pain."
Bella had no idea how to react. She simply stared at him.
A few moments passed by in silence until Edward suddenly looked up at her and flashed her a breathing takingly beautiful smile.
"I should take Illyssa home," he said calmly. "I'll see you tomorrow Ms. Swan."
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