As promised here is chapter 9. I've had 37 reviews for the last chapter which is amazing! So a big thank you to all those of you who have reviewed, like I said before, it was all of the reviews and PM's that I got over the last few months that started me off again and gave me the desire to pick Karma up again.
I really have the bug for it BUT reviews are my EDWARD they keep me going and give me the inspireation. For those of you who commented on Alice it is you who have inspired this chapter, I never intended it to go this way but I was running off your comments as I wrote so PLEASE the more reviews = more inspiration = more ideas = more chapters so keep them coming...how many will we get this time? It's more your story than mine now so ...well done!
I looked away from the mirror and over at Alice in question, as she stood leaning against my bedroom door eyeing me critically. The ivory corset that she had me bound into, although seriously restricting my breathing, had enhanced my slim form, my tiny waist, I'm sure, had been reduced a further inch or two, my ample breast were being held high, my hips were more defined and my posture was straighter. Despite that fact that I doubted I would be able to eat any of the meal that Esme was preparing for us, due to both the corset and the swarm of butterflies in my stomach, for the first time in my life I felt sexy.
Covering the corset, suspenders and skin coloured stockings was a beautiful thick cream woollen dress, almost angora in style, with a thin brown belt at the waist that matched perfectly to the brown suede half ankle stiletto boots I was wearing.
According to Alice, despite the fact that I was fully clothed, to the trained eye, it was perfectly obvious that I was wearing the corset. In other words, Edward would know!
"So, what do you think?" I asked when Alice still hadn't said anything.
"I think," she said pushing off the wall and walking over to me, running her hands through my neatly tussled hair, messing it up in the process, "That it's a bloody good job my dad's a doctor!"
"What, in case I pass out through lack of oxygen?" I asked laughing.
"No, you dope! For when Edward has a heart attack of course!" she cackled. "Now you remember what Zafrina said? Make eye contact with him but keep it breif, lowering your eyes as you talk to him is a sign of respect, Jasper knows what 's going on and he will guide you and remind you if you forget anything. Jasper will be in role but Edward won't be at first, if he picks up on what is going on and is responsive you will hopefully notice a subtle change in him hopefully Edward will pick up on Jaspers mood and it won't take long." She continued, "Now, we don't want to make anything too obvious to anyone, Edward included, he's not your Dom yet, so while you have to be respectful he has to be the one to pick up on your subtle hints, it's not your place to force the issue with him. Try not to look intimidated, be your usual open and friendly self with everyone else. What else? Oh yeah, now your hands need to be clasped in front of you, not folded or on your hips, put them behind you when you can, it will arch your back and push your breast like you are waiting for his inspection. If you're unsure just look to me or Jasper and we'll help you, okay?" I just nodded, my mouth suddenly too dry to speak. "You'll be fine!"
If you hadn't already guessed, it's Sunday and we are due to have lunch at the Cullen's place on Bainbridge Island in two hours. My Thursday afternoon spent with Zafrina had been both terrifying and exhilarating. After her initial assessment of me – that still turned my stomach – she had moved on to work with Alice and I together.
Jasper had given them both permission to work together for my introduction into what would be expected of me. We had gone through etiquette, positions such as the standard waiting positions, inspection positions, attention positions, serving food and drink, how to rise gracefully – not an easy one for me – and she had talked about the base relationship between a Dominant and submissive. I had left with an arm full of books and list of web addresses to look at and I spent most of Friday and Saturday doing just that. A lot of the information I had read before but most of it was new.
Jasper was waiting for us in the lounge, so after a quick swipe of lips gloss I grabbed my bag off the bed, shoving my gloss and phone inside and followed Alice out of my bedroom closing the door behind me. Jasper stood as we entered the room and Alice immediately stopped walking, lowered her eyes and clasped her hands behind her back. I suddenly felt uncomfortable in my own home and completely unsure of where to look, a quick glance at Jasper though, had me breathing a sigh of relief. Catching my eye he winked and smirked and then with a rise in his eyebrow he looked from Alice to me to the floor and then back to me. His instruction was subtle but perfectly clear and I lowered my eyes in response.
"Well, ladies, shall we?" he asked, but without waiting for a response he walked to the door, opened it and stood aside for Alice and I to pass. Grabbing my new wool coat – courtesy of Alice in the form or a large delivery of clothes that arrived at my door yesterday afternoon – I followed them both out of my apartment, making sure that the door was locked behind me.
Both Alice and Jasper were silent on the way over to Bainbridge Island and unfortunately for me, that gave me too much time to think about what I was getting myself into. I knew that I wanted this, wanted Edward, with my entire being, it was the thought that, given the chance, I would be giving control of that being to the man in question. It was something that I had been thinking about, fantasizing about for so many years, but after the uncomfortable afternoon with Zafrina and the time reading the books, example contracts and web sites she had given me, doubts that I could actually do this, give control of my body, my life, my everything to him for his pleasure and mine, were creeping in.
From what I had read these feelings were normal, it would take time, practice and a hell of a lot of patience – from Edwards perspective – for me to feel comfortable and able to offer him my complete submission and even longer still for his needs, wants and desires, to be my needs, my wants and my desires, for me to need to please him, for my contentment to be solely dependent on his.
"Are you alright, darlin?" Jasper suddenly broke the long silence and I met his eyes in the mirror for a brief moment before breaking the contact and looking down into my lap.
"Yeah, just got a lot on my mind, you know?" I shrugged.
"Edwards a fucking fantastic Dom, sugar, a kind one, you'd have to go a long way to find better, I've been at this as long as he has but I still turn to him for advice now and again," he glanced at Alice as he said this and she turned to smile at him. I wondered how uncomfortable that would be for Edward, giving his best friend advice knowing that it would be used on his baby sister. It can be easy, but it definitely shows a certain detachment and business-like approach.
"He's a great guy," I offered weakly, he was more than a great guy, in Japsers words he was a fucking fantastic guy, and that reminder eased my nerves somewhat.
"Thanks, Jasper!" I told him honestly. He smiled and winked at me as he had in the apartment.
We disembarked the ferry and travelled quickly along the winding roads of Bainbridge. The further we travelled the further back from the road and larger the houses became. Through a break in the trees I could see the waters of the Sound and the Olympic mountains on the horizon, it made me think of Charlie and my need to call him to let him know that I had got here safety and to make arrangements to visit him and Sue soon.
All too soon we had approached a pair of large iron gates, Jasper had entered a key code and we were driving towards one of the biggest houses I think I had ever seen. It was four stories high and made almost completely of glass and warm oak, it was not what I imagined at all. I expected something more presidential, white brick with tall pillars and roaming ivy. It was undeniably a beautiful work of art.
"Wow," I muttered. Alice looked at Jasper and at his soft nod she turned to me.
"It's great isn't it? Mom designed it a year or two before we moved back this way from Forks. She said that she needed something to let in as much sunlight as possible," she smiled causing me to smile back. I wasn't sure how comfortable I was with a silent Alice, it was strange and. . .just wrong!
"Yeah, it beautiful," I admitted.
Jasper stopped the car behind a sleek silver Volvo SUV and climbed out, opening first my then Alice's door. I thanked him and climbed out, making sure not to flash my suspenders as I rose to my feet but before I had a chance to right myself completely, the front door flew open and a streak of bronze ringlets shot down the steps and wrapped itself around my legs.
"Bewwa, you're here!" Lizzy exclaimed as she clung to me. I detached her arms and crouched down to her level wrapping my arms around her.
"Hey, pumpkin! I missed you," I said quietly in her ear as she buried her head in my shoulder.
"I's missed you too, Bewwa. Masen misses you too. I's been to the hosdibul wive daddy every day, and did you know that awl his tubs are gone now? Doctor Grrry said he can cowm howm soon too!" she told me excitedly. Of course I already knew all of this, I had spoken to Edward on the phone yesterday for an update and he told me everything Doctor Gerandi had said.
"He is? Wow that's great, I bet you can't wait to show him his new home, hey? And all your toys?" I said enthusiastically. Lizzy in all of her three year old glory, had push my nerves away and my complete attention was on her as she prattled on about all of the things that she had done with her daddy this week, and all of the things that she was going to do with Angela next week.
I didn't imagine for one minute that tomorrow would go as smoothly as she was painting it now. Edward had admitted to me yesterday that he was having trouble with her separation anxiety at night. He had managed to get her to sleep in her own bed, sitting with her until she fell asleep, but she was waking constantly through the night, plagued with nightmares and night terrors. He sounded exhausted when I had spoken to him.
"Are you not gonna let Bella come inside where it's warm, baby? And say hello to Aunt Alice and Uncle Jasper?" Came the velvety voice that could belong to no-one except this little girls daddy.
I was suddenly unsure of what I was supposed to do, it felt rude not to meet his eyes when speaking to him and I began to panic.
"You not gonna say hello to me, sugar?" Jasper asked crouching down next to Lizzy and me. I looked up at him, wide eyed and terrified. "You'll be fine, relax, breathe, be yourself, make brief eye contact then lower your eyes to speak," he instructed quickly and very quietly. I nodded infinitesimally, closed my eyes briefly and taking a deep breath rose to my feet, leaving Jasper trying to keep up with what Lizzy was now filling him in on.
The breath I had just taken turned out to be a useless endeavour as Edward stole it from me as soon as I looked at him. Yes I could still see how tired he was, but the dark circles below his eyes had faded, the stubble that had covered his face during our time at the hospital in Florida was gone, he was wearing a grey shirt, un-tucked with the top two buttons undone, and dark washed jeans, both accenting his muscular form.
"Hey," I breathed, all the tension leaving my body at the sight of him. The only problem was that I was unable to pull my eyes from his, I just couldn't do it! He smiled and I think I might have peed myself a little.
"Hey, how are you?" he asked just as quietly.
"I'm good, how are you? How's Masen?" I asked still maintaining eye contact, I heard Alice clear her throat and dropped my eyes quickly, it almost caused me pain to do so, everything was always in his beautiful green eyes.
"We're both good, he should be home on Friday," I just couldn't stop myself from looking back up at him as he spoke and I knew that this was never going to work. "Shall we go in?" he asked.
"Oh, yeah, of course," I stuttered while mentally chastising myself for failing already. Edward gestured for me to walk ahead of him and Alice and Jasper followed, Jasper carrying Lizzy in his arms as she continued to talk. I suppose he would be used to it, living will Alice and all!
Walking through the door, Edward helped me take off my coat and draped it over a seat that stood to the side of the hallway. Jasper and Alice had gone in ahead of us and placing his hand at the small of my back Edward guided my up the stairs.
Bella removed her coat revealing a cream coloured wool dress that hugged her form to perfection. Somehow she looked like she'd lost weight since I last saw her just four days ago, no that wasn't right, she hadn't lost weight, she was holding herself differently, more upright I think! Attempting to pull myself together I gestured for her to precede me up the stairs and when my desperate need to make contact with her had me placing my hand on the small of her back, the reason for her change in posture hit me like a bolt of lightning! Jesus, Mary and Joseph, she was wearing a corset! The ties at the back, invisible to the naked eye, could be felt distinctly through the fabric of her dress, and the ridged structure of the garment was firm and un-yielding beneath my finger-tips.
Why on God's green earth was Bella. . .Bella of all people. . .wearing a corset to Sunday lunch at my parent's house? My hard on was instantaneous, and extremely painful against the unforgiving fabric of my jeans and as I hissed in pain Bella turned to face me.
"You okay?" she asked, a frown on her beautiful face.
"Yeah, fine," I replied raising my eyes to hers. She was positioned a couple of steps up from me and her breasts, her magnificent breasts, pushed high and tight by the bone structure in her corset, were right at my eye level. It was only years and years of training to become the Dom that I was, that kept me from losing all composure. As my eyes reached hers she smiled and then looked down at her hands that were clasped in front of her. That was twice she had done that in the last five minutes and I wondered what was wrong.
With another small smile and an even smaller glance into my eyes, she turned and headed up the stairs. I kept my hands to myself this time and willed my hard on into submission before I had to face my family – including my three year old daughter.
"Bella, I'm so glad you could make it, you look wonderful, my dear," my mother exclaimed greeting Bella with a tight embrace which Bella returned wholeheartedly, next up was my dad who lovingly gripped her shoulders and kissed her forehead. Rose and Emmett hadn't arrived yet so with the formal greeting out a way we each took various seats around the lounge. When Alice discretely folded herself down onto the floor at Jaspers side and lovingly placed her head in his lap it was thankfully clear only to me that they were still playing, to anyone else in the room the position she had adopted simply looked like a loving gesture as Jasper sat playing with her spiky hair.
Bella also chose to sit on the floor, but she was sat looking through Lizzy's colouring books and praising my daughter's artistic abilities. Watching her, it was easy to see why she had chosen to go into childcare, she was a natural with children. Lizzy had taken to her straight away despite the trauma she had just endured, and they had formed a fast friendship.
"So, Bella, how's the apartment, Alice mentioned that you had settled in okay," My dad asked as he took his seat across from where I was sitting watching Bella and Lizzy.
"It's fantastic," she told him enthusiastically "The views are amazing and Alice has kindly helped me furnish it, she's got it looking great, so much better than I ever could!" She turned and smiled at Alice, who offered her a wide smile in return.
"And when do you start work?" My mom enquired as she perched on the arm of my dad's chair. I smiled as he wrapped his arm around her waist. A love like they have just never dies!
"A week on Monday, I need to nip in on Friday to complete a couple of forms and such though," she shrugged. "I'm really looking forward to it,"
"That's wonderful, sweetheart," my mom told her "You'll love the building, it bright and open and as well as the children's play area, there are some fantastic walks around the grounds. Lizzy will be going back soon too won't she honey?" she asked looking at me. I breathed a sigh of relief! Not once had I considered that Bella would be working at Lizzy's day care. I had been panicking about sending her back, wondering how she was going to manage the separation. She hadn't been there long before she was taken and it was that place she was taken from. Now realising that Bella would be there with her I felt like a huge weight had been lifted off my shoulders.
"Yeah she will," I smiled.
My mom smiled back as she rose and walked towards the kitchen, giving Bella's shoulder a light squeeze on her way past, "If you'll excuse me for a moment, I need to check on the chicken. Can I get anyone a drink while I'm there?"
"I'll give you a hand with the drinks," Bella offered rising gracefully to her feet, Lizzy was occupied colouring and barley noticed that Bella had stood. "What would everyone like?" she asked and turned to face me expectantly but once again lowered her eyes.
"Bella, you're a guest, you sit down I'll give my mom a hand," I offered and went to stand when she stopped me.
"No! I mean. . .of course if that's what you want to do . . .I mean, only if it plea. . .shit. . .sorry!" she clamped her hand over her face and looked at Alice helplessly. I'd never seen Bella like this before and I didn't know whether to laugh or pull her into a hug to try and comfort her.
"Edward, you stay and play with Lizzy or talk with the guys, I'll help mom and Bella," Alice quickly came to Bella's rescue and rose from the ground and taking hold of Bella hand she pulled her from the room.
"Well, that was interesting," my dad laughed, "What's wrong with Bella?" I shrugged and looked over at Jazz to see if he could shed any light on Bella's behaviour, he had after all been with her and Alice most of the day. He smirked at me and then turned to face my dad.
"She's been like this all morning, quiet and a tad. . .submissive. . ." he glance at me from the corner of his eye, "She has spent a lot of time with Alice this week, shopping and. . .things. . ."another glance, "The way Alice can talk she's probably on an information overload. She's in a new town, a new scene, meeting new people, starting a new position soon, realising all her desires, things she wants and needs. Everyone has their limits, she probably just needed a moment to get control over her emotions and not let all this upheaval dominate her mind"
I listened, incredulously, as Jasper spoke. Like a true lawyer he supplied all of the information needed but was only obvious and relevant to those who spoke the language. Submissive, information, scene, position, desires, wants, needs, limits, control, dominate. The words he had, in a very subtle way, emphasized, ran on repeat in my mind.
I missed my dad's response to what Jasper had said, there was no need to worry that he would pick up on the message that I was almost positive Jasper was trying to relay, he had no idea about our lifestyle and what had Jasper said that wasn't true to Bella's life? I did see when my dad lifted Lizzy and excused them both from the room, slipping through the glass doors into the garden, and after watching them go I turned to Jasper with a hard stare.
"Is there a reason you chose this time to inform me that Bella is a submissive? How long have you known? Why didn't you tell me? Do you have any idea what I have been going through trying to work out how to approach her with this?" I hissed at him.
"Woah, chillax! Firstly Bella is not a submissive. . .yet" he rose and moved to sit on the table at the side of me, "I only found out for sure on Thursday morning, that she wants to be, when Alice called me from Bella's apartment asking me to set up a meeting with Zafrina for the two of them for Thursday afternoon,"
"Zafrina? You arranged for Bella to meet up with Zafrina? Is she looking for a female Domme?" I frowned, my heart sinking into my stomach.
"Um, no! Look, Alice has already been punished for this, so keep your cool and stay out of it okay?" He wasn't really asking and my hackles rose, the alpha male and the big brother in me wanting to state my dominance over him – even if he was my best friend and brother! Grinding my teeth I nodded for him to continue. "Bella noticed Alice's collar on the flight back to Seattle, she – Alice – had already asked me when we were in Florida for permission to speak openly about our lifestyle to Bella, I told her that she could only if Bella stated an interest. Well Bella apparently cottoned on to what the necklace was about, almost immediately," I nodded, I had noticed that as well, "When Alice stopped by to take Bella shopping on Thursday morning a comment was allegedly made by Bella and Alice ran with it. Turns out, she likes you and had known about your lifestyle choice before you even graduated Forks high!" he continued
"She was only fifteen, and nobody knew – well apart from Tanya – how the hell did she find out?" I whisper-shouted.
"That, you will have to find out from Bella, I have no Idea. Anyway, so Alice tells her that you will most likely never enter a vanilla relationship, to which Bella responded that she didn't want a vanilla relationship with you, she wanted the kind of relationship that Alice and I have," he quirked his brow and smirked at me. I just stared at him wide-eyed. "So Alice, in all her wisdom, called me to set up the meeting, for Bella to go over a few basics with Zafrina, which I did, what I didn't know until I got a pissed off phone call from Zafrina was that Alice failed to tell Bella where she was taking her and why. Zafrina said that Bella was terrified and totally un-prepared for what was happening."
As he spoke my anger rose, by the time he finished I was fucking livid and jumped up off the couch to pace across the room. How dare she? Alice, of all people should know better! You never put a sub in such a vulnerable position and expect them to just role with it. Even an experienced sub would struggle with that. For someone like Bella, someone just thinking about entering the lifestyle it must have scared the living shit out of her, Zafrina scares the living shit out of me most of the time! No wonder Bella was so jumpy!
"So what now? Why didn't you wait until now to tell me about all this?" I demanded, Jasper sighed and leant back on the table.
"When Alice called me on Thursday morning, she made it sound like Bella was on board with all of this secrecy, that she didn't want to you know and I promised not to say anything. Seeing her for the first time today, trying to find her footing, not knowing how to act, the constant pleading with her eyes for help! It's a crock of bull! This is all Alice going off into la la land, trying to spice things up a bit. What Bella needs is for you to know, for you to either encourage her and talk to her, or tell her that you're not interested. All this mind game shit is fucked up." As he talked his outwards appearance was calm, relaxed, casual, but knowing him for so long, I could see the storm brewing behind his eyes. Yes, Alice had apparently already been punished for Thursday's stunt but add to that the game she's pulling Bella into and let's just say that I wouldn't want to be my little sister tonight. This was why they were still playing, they normally stop before we arrive at my parents for lunch. Jasper wanted to assess what was going on with Bella.
What I failed to understand was, why Alice hadn't just come to me, or asked Jasper to come to me and explain what was going on. Both of them were aware that I had feeling for Bella, she apparently told Alice that she has feelings for me, surely I had dealt with enough mind games and fuckery at the hands on Tanya to last me a fucking life time, I didn't need it from my sister as well!
"Do me a favour and tell Alice to stay the fuck away from me, not to talk to me, smile at me or approach me in any way! What she has done to Bella is inexcusable! She may not be my sub yet but she made it known that she wanted to be and Alice knew full well that I wanted the same. Any respectable, experienced, God damn fucking ethical sub would have done was pass the information over to her Master for Him to deal with as He saw fit, not string a bunch of lies, pushing her whims and desires onto an inexperienced, naïve, potential sub! If she has harmed Bella or my chances for a relationship with her in any way, I swear to God she'll be sorry! You should be ashamed of her, I certainly am!" I didn't once raise my voice, but the ice behind my words could have frozen molten lava and without looking back I walked out of the room, following the path my dad had taken with Lizzy. I needed to get out of the house, it was all just too much!
As I told Jasper, Bella might not be my sub yet but I wanted her to be, I wanted it so badly I could taste it and in her current state of mind the last thing she needed to see was me in angry Dom mode. I needed to clear my head and get in the zone before I approached her. Not an easy task when your blood is boiling.