The Distance Between Us

Disclaimer: SM owns it all.

Edward & Bella - Bring On the Wonder

Alice and Emmett had 'stolen' Bella from her dirty motel room, jumping out of her room's window once it was dark out, with her cradled in Emmett's arms.

Now they were in the beautiful house the Cullens were living in in Ithaca, New York.

Bella was sprawled on Alice's bed, seemingly in the throes of a horrid nightmare as she kept kicking her feet in her sleep, her head lolling from one side to another, and muttering under her breath about how everything was wrong and how Edward was leaving her again.

Nothing anyone would do would wake her. Esme was trying her hardest, though, painstakingly running a cool, wet cloth over Bella's forehead for a few minutes every hour, trying to get her to wake up - or, at the very least, calm down.

Rosalie was off sulking in her room. Although she was seeing firsthand, for a few minutes anyway, how the separation had effected Bella, she didn't care. Or more accurately, she didn't want to care. This was all turning out to be changing far too much in the perfect balance of her family and all she wanted was for things to go back to normal.

Emmett alternated between trying to persuade Rosalie and worriedly hovering over Bella. He was uncertain about how things were going to turn out, and this scared him. If things ended the way they had with that Amir and Sahara couple, then he would not only be losing the chance to have another little sister, but he would also be losing his brother. The first one he'd had since entering this life. No matter how much he'd teased Edward in the past, he liked to believe that they had a bond, a strong one, and it would really hurt him if that were to be gone forever.

Damn, Emmett sighed to himself. I should've fought harder when Edward wanted to leave Forks. It was a stupid idea.

Alice, sitting on the bed next to Bella, her best friend's hand clasped in her cool one, spoke up. "They're going to be here in a half hour," she informed the others.

Emmett started slightly from where he stood looking out the window.

Esme, squeezing the small towel she held in her hand and wringing it of water, looked up at her daughter. "They are?" she murmured.

Alice nodded silently, her gaze never leaving Bella's face.

Esme frowned as she noticed Alice's less than excited expression. "Alice," she said slowly, lowering the towel and draping it over the rim of the bowl filled with water. "Did you…I mean, are Edward and Bella…Will everything turn out fine? Once they're reunited."

Alice remained silent for so long that Esme didn't think she would answer. She had just picked up the towel again, dipping it in the cool water, when Alice replied.

"I don't know," she whispered, her face falling a fraction more. "I just…I don't know why, but I can't see the outcome. All I can see is Edward and Bella, lying right here on this bed, side by side. They look like they're sleeping, but that's it. After that…It's like I hit some sort of wall."

Esme reached across Bella's prone body to grasp Alice's free hand, her eyes filled with support for Alice. "It'll be alright, Alice," she assured the girl.

Alice lifted her head, then, to look at Esme. Her mother's tone had been so…Certain, as though she had absolutely no doubt in her words. She looked like she believed it, too. It confused Alice. Esme's faith was pretty strong, even at a time like this, when all the evidence pointed in the direction of looming tragedy.

"How can you be so sure?" Alice asked.

Esme shrugged, placing the wet cloth on Bella's forehead once more. "Some things a mother just knows," was her vague reply.

They stayed in silent for the rest of their wait. Half an hour had never seemed so long to the immortal beings.

"They're here," Emmett announced, seeing Carlisle's Mercedes pulling up to the driveway. He'd wanted to go downstairs and meet them, but Carlisle and Jasper were already out of the car, Edward being carried in Carlisle's arms.

It wasn't two seconds later that the three of the men were in Alice's and Jasper's bedroom.

Alice lifted Bella's hand, entwined with her own, and pressed a kiss to the back of her friend's hand. She gently placed Bella's hand on her stomach, and stood from the bed, going over to her husband of over fifty years.

Jasper, looking wearier than she'd ever remembered, greeted her with a soft kiss and his arms wrapped around her waist. They stood together in an embrace as they watched Carlisle walk over to the bed, lowering Edward down on the bed, laying him down next to Bella.

Even Rosalie, begrudgingly, wandered out of her room and into Alice's, wanting to see if anything should happen. After all, she argued silently. If Edward died, I'd still be sad about it.

A few minutes passed, with absolutely nothing happening. Esme, whose hands were clasped underneath her chin in silent prayer as she watched her son and his love with hopeful eyes, was the only one in the room whose faith was unwavering.

"Maybe we should…" Emmett started to say, but there was suddenly movement on the bed.

Edward let out a sigh in his 'sleep', turning his head to the left so that he was facing Bella. A few moments passed before Bella did the same, angling her head towards Edward.

Six vampires watched, entranced, as Edward's left arm and Bella's right inched closer to one another, their hands finding each other in sleep.

Alice let out a sharp gasp as she watched Edward and Bella's hands intertwined even when they were both unconscious.

With their skin to skin contact, the first form of actual physical contact in over a year, everything suddenly changed.

Slowly, color began to rise in Bella's pallid, waxy skin. A slight pink tinge even grew in her pale cheeks. Her hair, lying limp and oily, suddenly grew shiner, healthier. The cracks in her lips healed.

Edward, too, looked better. His skin was still as pale as ever, but it didn't look as translucent as it had moments before. The bags underneath his eyes lessened slightly, and his lips turned from a gray color to the normal purplish color that vampires' lips usually had.

It was as though they were watching life itself slowly seep back into the two of them, as though they had been the living dead before and had now regained their life force.

Bella moved closer to Edward in her sleep, rolling her body until she was snuggled into him, and his right arm wrapped around her waist, his body turned to hers as well. They looked like a normal couple who had fallen asleep together, even if that just simply wasn't the case.

Rosalie was the first to say anything, the others still too shell shocked at the sudden transformation that had taken place. "Huh."

Nothing else happened for the longest time, even as they stared at the two of them. Finally, an hour after Edward and Bella had been reunited, Carlisle suggested leaving them alone. Who knew when they would actually 'wake up'.

"Perhaps they need to recuperate," he suggested.

Rosalie scoffed, "That's ridiculous. He's a vampire. He's not even supposed to sleep."

Emmett had gently dragged his wife out of the room, throwing a smile at the others as he did, and had whisked her into their room. He was sure everything would be fine now - Edward and Bella both looked better and despite Alice being blind over this, it all looked good. Now all he had to do was distract his wife from her misplaced frustration.

Bella and Edward both didn't rise from their slumber until sunrise the next morning. Bella woke first, Edward following suit just seconds later.

Bella, confused as to her whereabouts, stretched her body, making no move to extract herself from Edward's arms. She looked up at him, eyes wide and brimming with tears, though she didn't look at all surprised to see him there.

She lifted one hand, placing it on his cheek, like she'd tried to do so many times before. Edward, who had been watching her with those same obsidian eyes he'd been sporting for months, closed his eyes, a moan escaping his lips.

"I can't tell you how good it is to be able to touch you," Bella murmured, her fingers stroking his smooth skin.

Edward's eyes fluttered open and he gave her a soft smile. "I can't tell you how good it is to be able to feel you," he replied in an equally soft, intimate voice, his own hand flying to her cheek to gently wipe the tears spilling from her eyes.

They stared at each other, just like that, still wrapped in each other's embrace, one hand on each other's face, understanding swimming in their eyes. They might not know about Animus Discidium, or how exactly they'd ended up on a bed in a room that was far too nice to be in a motel Bella had decided to stay in for a while, but they knew that they were meant to be, and that the hallucinations they had been having weren't really hallucinations.

"Hi," Edward said, sounding strangely shy.

It was the first time Bella had ever heard him sound like that, coy and slightly timid, and it made her want to smile. She wasn't sure if she knew how to smile at this point, but she wanted to. "Hi," she responded in an equally small voice.

There was a pause, a moment where they simply stared at each other, eyes raking hungrily over one another as though they had been deprived the privilege of seeing each other for far too long.

And, in a way, they had.

Hallucinations. Apparitions. Astral forms…

None of those were enough.

Bella swallowed, remembering the crushing pain that had enveloped her for over a year due to his disappearance from her life.

Edward must've seen the pain in her eyes, because the small smile on his face dropped instantly. "Bella…" he whispered.

"You left me," she accused, tears stinging her eyes once more.

Edward sighed, shutting his eyes and squeezing them tightly for a moment. He felt all the weariness he'd been suppressing suddenly crashing down on him, the mental exhaustion wearing him out more than he cared to admit.

"Yes," he replied unnecessarily, his eyes slowly drifting open. He gave Bella a remorseful look, his own onyx eyes swimming with venom that would never fall. "I regret that most soundly."

"I know," she sighed, looking as tired as he felt.

"I love you so much, Bella."

At that, a small smile flickered on her lips. "I know that, too."

Edward leaned forward, brushing a kiss to Bella's forehead. The burn in his throat was impossibly strong, though he embraced it as punishment for his wrong doings concerning Bella. He wanted to kiss her, properly on the lips, but he wouldn't be doing that until he's had a chance to hunt and regain his control.

Nothing, however, and no amount of thirst would ever make him covet her blood anymore. He was in no danger of being hurt by him, not after the hell they'd just went through. She was his everything, and she'd be damned if he'd let anything happen to her.

Edward slowly sat up, the arm around her torso tightening slightly to raise her to a sitting position opposite him. He brushed back the tangles of her hair, smiling softly at her and watching as she blushed, a pang of nostalgia running through him as he realized just how much he missed her human reactions.

"I suppose…That we need to talk."

This, for me, is the perfect ending.

Remember, that in 'The Distance Between Us' universe, Bella had gone without contact with her parents ever since she'd left Forks after seeing Edward's apparition that first time.

If I continue this story, it would just be a repetitive thing with Edward and Bella realizing they can't be apart, Bella wanting to be changed, Edward being morose about things, maybe a reconciliation between Bella and her parents, Victoria's reappearance and demise…I might as well just be rewriting the series, with a few twists and turns here.

So I leave it at this, where we know that EXB will get their happy ending, leading a happily ever after sort of eternity together. Whether they have a hybrid child or not is up to your imagination.

I hope you guys have enjoyed reading this story. Thank you so much for your time.