Note: FFn was not cooperating at the time I posted this and all formatting was lost. I'm hoping the italic and bold print are visible. I aplogise on FFn's behalf if they are not.
Epilogue: A Wise Man Once Said...
Three years. Where had the time gone? It seemed like it was just yesterday that I was taped to that flagpole, and suddenly I was packing up my shit and moving on. I wasn't going far, though. Bella and I had rented a little bungalow-style home in a quiet neighborhood not far from campus where we planned to shack up together while getting our Master's degrees. I was excited about graduating, but I was even more excited about the living with Bella thing. Living together would be perfect. We agreed on just about nothing, but that didn't mean anything except that the makeup sex would be earth moving. We'd really only had one little tiff and that was over country music. I refused to have it played anywhere in my presence, whereas Bella had apparently been "raised" on it.
"How can you not like country music?" she nearly screeched as she carefully lined up her extensive collection of country CDs. "It's the backbone of this country! It's un-American to not like country!"
"Oh, yeah, 'cause 'Honky-tonk Badonk-a-Donk' is the quintessential American anthem," I countered.
"Fuck you, Cullen." And because I loved it when she ordered me around, I'd done just that. Twice.
It was fantastic to think that soon I'd be waking up to her every morning and having the luxury of twenty-four/seven access to her. And I'd be lying if I tried to deny that I derived intense pleasure in the fact that my moving in with Bella pissed Emmett off. That was just a bonus to the grand prize of coming home every day to my delicious, and potentially naked, girlfriend. God, I couldn't wait for the day I walked in to find her vacuuming naked. Or studying at the dining room table naked. Or doing anything in our new place naked.
Dream on, Golden Boy. Just 'cause you live together now doesn't mean she'll be your sex slave.
Bite me, Shat. Bella could be a closet nudist just dying for the time and space to shed the skins of social conformity and run around naked every chance she gets!
Pft! Sure, keep telling yourself that. That will happen the same day I run out of smartass comebacks and disappear from your life forever.
Sweet baby Jesus, let that day be today!
Nope, not today. But try wishing on a star, I hear that works well for the rest of the Disney princesses.
What does my wanting Bella naked every moment of every day have to do with Walt Disney or his princesses? You're slipping, my man.
I am NOT slipping! The man had a dream; you have a dream. The only difference between you and Walt is that his was actually attainable.
He wanted to build an entire empire around a mouse; I just want Bella naked 24/7. I still don't see the connection.
It always comes back to you wanting that girl naked. You have a one-track mind.
Actually, it's all about me making her come. So, yeah, I guess you're right. For once.
I'm always right, my boy. You should know this by now.
I decided to let it drop.
What's the point of arguing with a cocky know-it-all anyway?
This has always been my point, GB.
Fuck you, Shat.
No thank you, that's in Bella's job description, not mine.
We were finishing up moving in today and then graduating in three days. Both of our families would be there as well as the crew. Well, Alice was graduating with us. Rose and Em had graduated three years earlier, and Jasper the year before last. I was really glad that they had all come to see us walk, but even happier that they were all staying some place other than ours! I would have my wicked, dirty way with the woman who starred in my every fantasy in our bed tonight. The thought pushed me to hurry with my packing and get over to the new place.
As I drove across campus, I thought about all the crazy things we'd done over the past four years. With Emmett and Jasper's departure, the Delta House took on a more mellow feel. Those two had been hardcore with their pranks, bordering on dangerous. Under my tutelage, the Delts became known for a different kind of shenanigans. I couldn't risk academic repercussions over a good laugh and bragging rights. So we moved on from the degrading and potentially dangerous to a more embarrassing and legendary style of tomfoolery. There was the ritualistic salting or sugaring of newbies' sheets- that was merely uncomfortable and a classic. And all new players on the football team got the special treat of having raw garlic rubbed inside of their shoes and pads. To be honest, it was an improvement. There was the time we secretly loaded Jasper's blow dryer with baby powder. The douchebag looked like Bob Marley's ghost, and man was he pissed! We decided not to mess with the guy's hair products after that. Items went missing regularly in the Delt house, only to turn up in bizarre places when least expected. Bankcards popped up out of the toaster, sunglasses came shooting out of the ice maker, keys hung from ceiling fans, and cell phones rang out from within the water tanks of all the toilets. (Just think double bagged, zip-lock baggies. Although, sadly, more than one cell phone met its doom in a watery grave. May they R.I.P.) Many a Delt had stumbled drunkenly to bed, only to wake up safely surrounded by the contents of their entire room arranged on the front lawn. The pranks on me didn't end simply because I was the prez of the Delts, oh no! Once, I went away with Bella for a few days only to return to find my room filled with over 2,000 balloons, that, when popped, spewed confetti and glitter. That's a fuckton of sparkles and spent latex, and not the good kind.
I think my favorite prank was Emmett's "going away" gag. He'd gone home with Rose to take a van of her shit back to her parents' before graduation and we went to work the moment we were positive he was gone. In a span of about ten minutes, we had his bedroom door off its hinges and the frame carefully pried from the wall as well. A couple of us walled up the hole with drywall, taped and spackled over the seams, and then painted over the entire hallway the next day after the spackle had dried. Then we painted the living room downstairs to throw him off the scent, so to speak. The look on his face was priceless. He returned home exhausted after a twenty-hour drive and just wanted to sleep in his own bed, only he couldn't find his room. He KNEW where it was supposed to be, but there was just smooth wall where the door should have been. I don't think I'd ever heard the term "fuckers" so much in my cumulative lifetime. It went down in the prankster annals alongside the "Pole Incident." Ahhh, those were good times...
I pulled up in our driveway and wrestled a box out of the back of the Charger. "Honey, I'm hooooome!" I did my best Ricky Ricardo impression as I walked through the front door. Okay, yeah, even my best sucked donkey balls, but that shit was still funny. I wasn't three steps in the door when a blur flashed by me, tackling me from behind. Bella jumped on my back, nearly knocking me to the floor. I stumbled but managed to put the box I had in my hands down before reaching around to grab that delicious ass of hers. "Hmm, babe," I hummed, "you're wearing that little denim skirt I love so much..." I slid my hands up under the hem. "And nothing underneath? Someone's feeling frisky. Have you been working like this all morning?"
"Like what," she feigned innocence. My girl was anything but innocent.
"Bare," I growled, spinning her to face me. I kicked the door closed behind me and laid her out on the new rug we'd just picked out yesterday for the foyer. I knew I liked this rug, and I had a feeling that I'd be loving it in about twenty minutes. She lay beneath me, the aforementioned skirt bunched up around her waist, her knees bent allowing me to kneel before the beautiful view of her sex perfectly displayed for me to admire.
"God, baby, you're beautiful. Have you been waiting for me all morning?"
"Yeah, I have, actually. You're all I've thought about since I dreamed about you and me doing this last night. I heard you pull up and I couldn't wait. God, Edward, touch me already!" She palmed and squeezed her boobs, desperate for any kind of relief.
Damn, she was really worked up! That must have been some dream she'd had!
"Tell me, sweetie, tell be about this dream..." Bella could talk circles around a phone sex operator, and I encouraged this behavior every chance I got.
"We fucked here on this rug. You pounded me like there was no tomorrow. Now shut up and start pounding!"
Well, that wasn't her best body of work. But it worked for me. I skipped the fanfare and barely got my cock free from my jeans before she was pawing at it and aiming The Little Captain where she wanted him. To be honest, I might have wanted to take a little more time and explore a few of the ways I could get the pattern in our fancy new Oriental rug to imprint into her soft, supple skin. But my woman wanted hard and fast, and who was I to deny her?
I let her guide me as I pushed into her and began thrusting just as she'd requested, not even waiting for her to adjust to me being inside her. I couldn't help but think that if we kept up this pace I would pass out from exhaustion before either of us made it to the finish line. Her moans and cries for "more" and "harder" spurred me on to "go the distance." I made a mental note to add two extra miles to my morning runs now that I wasn't playing ball anymore. A guy had to keep his stamina up.
After careful consideration, I'd decided not to continue on with a career in football. Shocking, I know! Oh, I had offers. More than I knew what to do with, but truthfully, I was over it all. I really just wanted to settle down with Bella and begin our lives together, like a normal couple. If I had gone pro like everyone wanted or expected me to I'd be back to where I started: having to prove myself all over again and working my way up. Sure, I could have done it. I'm Edward Golden Boy Cullen, for fuck's sake! But the acceptance and adoration of millions wasn't so very important to me anymore. The only person I needed acceptance from was writhing and moaning her adoration beneath me. I was, indeed, a pro player.
I focused my attention on seeing how loud I could get her to scream out my name. I'd consider it a personal victory if we earned envious glares from our new neighbors each time either of us went out to collect the paper or mail from now on. Hey, it's healthy to have goals in life, right? It crossed my mind how much Bella liked it when I switched things up unexpectedly, so without so much as a "hold onto your Oriental fringe" as a warning, I popped out of her and flipped her over on all fours. Then slammed back into her before she really knew what was happening. I just knew the neighbors had to have heard that cry over their HGTV or Cupcake Wars or what the fuck ever daytime TV they were watching in that Lazy Boy recliner of theirs. I was pounding her, and most likely leaving bruises from where my hips were hitting her thighs, but her pants and the sound of my name erupting from her lips told me that she was loving every moment. I felt her clinch around me, her impending orgasm just a few thrusts away. When she came she screamed my name one last time, and I had no question that I wouldn't need to introduce myself to Mr. and Mrs. Jones... who lived three houses down. I concentrated on my own happy ending, focusing on the sensations of the feel of her smooth skin under my hands, the view of the swell of her plump ass as I thrust into her, her continued groaning in pleasure as I hit that spot that could make her come more than once.
"Edward...," she begged. "Edward," she called more forcefully that time. "FUCK!" Her second release brought my own, and I as I rode out my orgasm I echoed her sentiments. I slowed my pace, attempting to extend the moment for as long as possible.
"What the fuck was that about?" she asked.
"Just trying to make all your dreams come true, baby." I pumped into her a few more times to drive my point home.
"Ugh, Edward," she sighed and sank down onto her elbows, sticking her ass higher in the air. I'd have to take her just like that later- in our bed. Just as I was about to pull out of her I heard the unmistakable click of the latch on the front door. I turned in time to feel the breeze on my bare ass and see Bella's very large, very stunned brother and his pretty, blonde wife, Rose looming over me.
"Well, now. That gives a whole new meaning to the 'Wel-COME' mat out front." That Rosie, she always was the funny one.
We were all assembled in the Stephen C. O'Connell center and the Dr. William Alan Shatner was sitting on the stage. He'd been given an honorary doctorate and the irony of his being at my graduation wasn't lost on me. After four years of blood, sweat, and yes, even a few tears, we were finally graduating. I looked around at the sea of black robes and caps around me, recognizing more than a few of the faces I saw there.
Bella was behind me and I twisted in my seat to wink at her. She gave me a "thumbs up" and blew me an air kiss. I wondered if she'd worn panties under that robe of hers. I'd bought her a special graduation gift, but she'd sweetly nixed my suggestion that she wear the remote controlled panties during the ceremony- even though I'd promised to make the long, boring display of pomp and circumstance a memorable experience for her. That was when she reminded me that the robes were rentals and would need to be returned. She still refused despite my offer to pay the dry cleaning bill. Her loss. I wasn't too upset; there'd be plenty of opportunities to put those puppies to good use.
Just a few moments earlier I had been up on that stage with the real Shatner, as the University honored the years of awesome "winning" I'd led the Florida Gators to. Three National Championships in the four years I was QB. THREE. And I did it all without a single drop of tiger's blood. Charlie Sheen would be so proud. The sound of Dr. Shatner's voice threw me off my game, and for a moment I thought it was The Shat. I focused as he began his convocation address...
"Thank you everybody, thank you, too numerous to mention.
This was an easy degree to get. They just ask you, you say, 'Yes,' and you get a degree, thank you very much.
I'm honored and grateful, but it wasn't quite so easy getting my Bachelor of Commerce degree from McGill. I had quite a struggle, actually. First, getting into McGill, it being such a prestigious university. My academics weren't all that good coming out of West Hill High School, which is now defunct. I may have killed it, yes it's true.
The only vivid memory I have of West Hill High School was corporal punishment, where the teachers whipped you with a rubber strap on your open palm for something you'd done requiring punishment. Like coming late for classes, which I did. Being rambunctious within the classroom, which I did. Or even burning the principal's car, which somebody else did and I deny it.
The only thing that remains more vivid than anything else was that we won city championships. We became a dynasty. We won several football championships, and I was really the best player. On the second team. That's the story of my life.
When I went to McGill I earnestly thought that I would be the best football player on the second team of the freshman class. After all, I weighed 160 pounds and I could run the 100-yard dash in something like 14 seconds. Slow but sure – the story of my life.
Sadly, I didn't make the freshman football team. Somebody punched me in the stomach, and somebody else stepped on my head, and you can imagine I didn't do well with the breakfast I'd eaten a little earlier, making my first day my last day."
It sounded to me like his first day at McGill looked a lot like my first day at UF. The main difference was that I had stuck with the team. I had overcome the shit they'd given me day in and day out both on and off the field. And while it may sound like I was bragging- oh, who am I kidding? I was bragging!-I fucking ruled that school! The only thing that ever got in my way was Emmett McCarty. But even he couldn't keep me down.
No, but his sister sure did!
Yes, Shat, Bella has me hook line and sinker, I'm not ashamed to admit that. And by default, she has you too.
Shit. Does this make us both pussy-whipped?
I think it does, man. I think it does.
That means I'm no better than that kitty chasing Pepe le Pew.
Ah, maybe, but at least he had the cool French accent going for him.
Shut the le fuck up, GB.
Chuckling, I tuned back in to what Captain Kirk was saying...
"It was then that I discovered drama. Things would have been much easier at university if I hadn't played football and had joined the drama club right away, but easier is not my way – the story of my life.
I had been active in amateur theatricals for several years before that on radio and on stage, with television yet to be invented. That's how far back I go, folks. When I came to McGill, I followed those interests and became at some point president of the radio club and a creative force in the Red and White Revue, performing university musicals.
It was through creating those musicals that I got my university education. In the student building, a couple of blocks from the present student union, in the basement, under the stairs, the Red and White Revue had their offices. The offices consisted of a desk, a chair and a sofa. I made better use of the sofa than the desk. That's a whole other education that I received.
My point is that my academic life at McGill, where I was working on a Bachelor of Commerce degree, and all those accounting, economics and mathematics classes, none of which I attended, because I was too busy trying to clean the sofa at the Red and White Revue office.
In those days, there were very few vacuum cleaners and spray cleaners and it was all done by hand. That's another part of my university education. But what this did teach me was not only cleanliness but hard work. Running around the desk at the Red and White Revue office was hard work. I felt the sweat on my face, running around the desk.
It taught me that if you want to get something done, you have to get up early in the morning. When asked what my secret to being a success is, my answer has always been, 'Get up earlier in the morning. There's nothing you can't accomplish when standing on two feet. When you're lying down, all you accomplish is some REM sleep and working out your dream life.'
When I graduated, which I did just barely in the fall after I had to make up a half course in math, which I had failed — I got my degree in September — I landed my first professional job in a small acting company in Montreal on Mount Royal. The bothersome thing was that I got the job as an assistant manager by telling them I got my bachelor's degree from McGill, and that I was adept at accounting and banking. This was the only other lie I ever told – the first one being that I hadn't set fire to the principal's car.
It wasn't long before they discovered two things. I had no accounting skills whatsoever — my math skills were really bad — and that I was a good actor. My talents didn't lie in the field of accounting. My father, who'd paid for my education, was not amused, but my talents lay in trying to be funny and entertaining people, and although I didn't study that per se — that's Latin, by the way — I did get my education, complete, whole and useful at McGill. And today I stand here, in what would seem a world away from McGill and I gratefully accept this honor from this prestigious University.
I got my education my own way and I urge you all to get it your way.
The road of life isn't linear. It's a country route, dusty and dirty, with soft shoulders and high banks. Don't be afraid of taking chances, of striking out on paths that are untrod. Don't be afraid of failing. Don't be afraid of making an ass of yourself.
I do it all the time, and look what I got."** He waved the honorary degree at us.
The entire auditorium erupted in applause. That had to have been the best piece of advice I had ever received: Don't be afraid of making an ass of yourself. It was one of the hardest lessons I'd learned over the past four years at UF, and to think it had come from the efforts of Emmett McCarty and the mouth of William Shatner.
My name is Edward, Former Golden Boy, Cullen. I was, er, AM, an ass, and I will spend the rest of my days making an ass of myself in the school of life. It is my sincerest wish that you do the same. Let's make The Shat proud!
AND THEY LIVED HAPPILY FOREVER AFTER!
**This is more or less the actual speech Dr. William Shatner delivered this year when he received an honorary doctorate from McGill University. I have tampered with it just a smidge to make it fit here, but if you'd like to read or watch the actual speech in its unmarred form please go to: trekmovie(DOT)com/2011/06/02/watch-dr-william-shatner-gives-mcgill-university-convocation-address/
A/N: So, that's it ladies! The end of Golden Boy's era. I'm kinda sad to see this end, but I'm so relieved to see it complete! So with an excited, albeit nostalgic heart, I click the "complete" button on my first EVER multi-chapter fic! There will be at least one more outtake in the "Premature Emasculation" so mark that one for updates.
Yes, I realize that Bella and Edward would not have been recognized in the same commencement ceremony considering their vastly different degrees, but cut a girl some slack and just go with it. It would have been the same day, just different times. It's called ARTISTIC LICENSE. ;)
Thank you all for reading and indulging me in this insanity. I can't believe I wasted all of our time with it! *laughs hysterically* I hope you've enjoyed this even a fraction as much as I have.
Super special thanks to Coachlady12, TwilightMundi, and Barburella. You three were my trifecta of "you can do it!" and this would not have been completed without the part each of you played. Thanks for encouraging the crazy and just being you.
And to a handful of readers who became friends through the reading and reviewing of this fic (you know who you are), thank you. You all have a dedicated place in my heart and I cherish you. I'm honored to call you "friends" and not simply readers.
All my love!