FIVE YEARS LATER
"Is Charlie still the one picking us up?" Alice asked as she retrieved her last bag from the carousel.
"As far as I know, yes." I replied. "I don't think he'd miss our return."
"True. Did you see his face when he dropped us off?"
I laughed, remembering that Charlie had looked like his puppy had just gotten ran over when we waved him goodbye. "Yeah...I can only imagine his face when he sees us in a few minutes."
Grabbing my lavender suitcase, we headed to the front of the building where we were met with a blast of heat when the doors slid open. I looked around and saw Charlie's new truck parked a few hundred feet down the line, so we started walking towards it. We weren't even two steps in the direction when Charlie's figure appeared in front of us, big smile on his face as he fast-walked in our direction.
I smiled back as Alice dropped her luggage and met Charlie halfway, jumping into his arms and giggling as he twirled her around, her legs swinging through the air. I shook my head at them and picked up Alice's discarded bags, slowly making my way over to them. I reached them just when he sat Alice back down on the ground, but kept her in his arm, as the other one reached out for me. I sat the bags down and joined the hug session, letting out a wheeze when his grip got so tight that I couldn't breath.
"I'm glad my girls are back." He whispered, then kiss us both on our foreheads, releasing us and helped us carry the bags to the car.
The car ride was pretty silent, Charlie knowing how tired we were from the long-ass plane ride, but I knew he expected us to dish when we made it back to the ranch. I also knew everyone else would be interested as well, so we might as well would tell them all together, instead of having to repeat ourselves time and time again. I was excited to see them, and it felt like it had been forever since we left. I missed everyone, especially Abby.
When we made it back to the ranch forty minutes later, we got out and took a deep breath, taking in the smell of home...and a cake that surely was sitting out on the counter to cool at the moment. I smiled, leaving our bags in the car, deciding to take them to our cabin after our little family reunion that was about to happen. Jumping up the stairs and unlocking the door,
"Mom? We're home!" I yelled through the house.
We responded with a loud bark, then Abby skidding across the wood floor, trying to get to us as fast as possible. She looked like she had gotten bigger, but I'm sure that was just because we hadn't seen her in three months. I knelt down to pet her, her tail wagging so hard it made her butt wiggle back and forth; she was definitely happy to see us. Just as I saw Mom come around the corner, Abby started attacking Alice with her tongue, licking her cheeks, making Alice giggle.
"My babies are back! Just in time, I backed a chocolate cake just for your return. How was the honeymoon?" She said, taking me into a hug.
"Sex-filled, I'm sure." Emmett said as he came out of the living room.
"Emmett, behave." Mom said, waving him off, and I buried my face in her neck in embarrassment.
"What? We all know what couples do on honeymoons, it's no secret." He winked. "Now let me hug my sis."
Mom gave me a sympathetic pat on the back, then let me go while she hugged Alice. Emmett immediately wrapped his huge arms around me, picking me up off the ground. "I missed you two." Setting me down he kissed me on the cheek, then went for Alice. "Come here, pixie stick!" Smiling bright, she jumped into his arms without hesitation, and Mom and I chuckled at the sight.
"What's all this commotion down here?" Jasper said teasing as he came down the stairs, followed by Edward, Jacob, and Rose. "Whoa, you two look paler than when you left."
"That's because they spent the whole time in the bedroom." Emmett muttered, making everyone, even Mom smile; Though Charlie just stood there awkwardly.
"Actually, we saw plenty of sights, and I have pictures to prove it!" Alice announced.
"Just make sure there are no naughty pictures in there before you show us..." Rose joined in on the teasing.
"Okay, everyone, that's quite enough of the sexual innuendos. You're embarrassing them." Carlisle said, stepping in.
I playfully smacked Rose's arm before I grabbed her into a hug. How I missed her funny retorts, bitchiness, and our sisterly talks. I hugged Jake next, then Edward, Jasper, and finally Carlisle, reacquainting myself with each person's touch and scent. I had missed them all over the three months that we were honeymooning Europe, and I couldn't imagine going that long without seeing everyone again. Though I did have the most amazing time with Alice, and it was great not having distractions around.
But now that we were back home, I would be busy for the next few days. Thankfully I hadn't needed to quit my job at The Diablo City Journal to take this trip, they had just used it to their advantage, temporarily moving me from the movie reviews to the travel section, so I could write about what we saw and experienced. I was excited to get started, but we were so exhausted from the constant traveling, I'd have to start tomorrow.
As for Alice's clothing shop, Alice Cullen Co., Heidi took care of things while we were gone, and business is still going strong from what she has said in email updates. Alice would be returning to work tomorrow, and I know she's been itching to sketch down some ideas that she was inspired by on our trip and show them to Heidi and Jane to get their opinions.
"Cake anyone?" Mom asked, and we all looked at each other, then piled into the kitchen behind her, quickly grabbing plates that were set out and cut ourselves pieces. Alice sat on my lap while Emmett, Rose, and Mom, sat next to us in the booth. Charlie, Edward, Jacob, and Jasper sat on the stools at the counter, and all was quiet for a few minutes as we all enjoyed the taste of Mom's fine baking skills.
"Now, before I was interrupted..." She side-glanced at Emmett. "I was asking how your trip was."
"One word: Amazing." Alice answered. "The sights were great, but the landscapes are so much more beautiful. Even though it was cool and rainy most of the time, it made the places look more fantasy like...especially when the fog would roll in. I can't tell you how many pictures we took!"
I nodded. "I'm sure all the memory cards are full, and each have space for five thousand pictures on it."
"Yeah, I was a little snap happy, but I didn't want to miss anything."
I laid my head on Alice's shoulder and closed my eyes as she talked about our little adventures we had in each city, of course, leaving out the good amount of time we had spent in bed. Bringing my arms around her waist, I twirled my wedding band around my finger, like I did every day, not really believing it am a married woman now, to the most beautiful creature on the planet. This all still seems like a fantasy I've been living for the past five years, and I feel the need to pinch myself every time I think about it.
"Looks like someone is tired." I heard Mom say from across the table.
I felt Alice nod. "We should call it a night...that flight was long."
"Everyone should hit the hay, it's getting late." Carlisle announced as I opened my eyes to find the boys getting off the stools and putting the dishes in the sink.
I reluctantly sat back up, letting Alice get off me. We hugged Mom once more before we headed out the front door, Charlie already unpacking our bags from the truck. Reassuring him that we could carry everything, he gave us both bone-crushing hugs, and left, saying he would see us within the next few days. We waved him off, then headed to the cabin with Abby right behind us, just as happy as we were to be sleeping in our own home again.
Not bothering to unpack, Alice and I left the luggage in the living room to deal with tomorrow, going straight in the bathroom to brush our teeth and change into some PJs. Abby was already in her dog bed when we came out, Alice hoping in bed instantly, while I went ahead and connected the camera to my laptop, knowing it would take a while to download, and why not do it while we're sleeping?
Letting out a breath when I saw them start to transfer, I closing the screen, but not shutting it all the way, just enough so the light wouldn't bug us and so the computer wouldn't go to sleep. I rubbed my eyes and turned around, Alice doing the same on the bed, looking adorable as usual. I smiled, climbing on the bed from the foot, and working my way up until I was straddling her. With a few good night kisses, I collapsed next to her, getting under the covers and enjoying the feel of the comfortable bed.
Snuggling up behind Alice, I took her hand in mine, our rings softly clinking together. I enjoyed that sound, wondering now that we were married, what else would be in our future. But whatever was to come, we would be in it together, forever.
A/N: This story is very near and dear to my heart, and I'm so happy at the great response I've gotten from it. I want to thank everyone who has reviewed and shown their love for it over this, what seems like really short, period of time. I just want to say now that, there will be no sequel written for this, but I will continue writing Alice/Bella fics. I hope that you can find another story of mine that you'll like just as much as this one.
P.S. - Reference pic links for adult Abby, and Bella and Alice's wedding rings are posted on my profile.