Chapter 45: Epilogue…from Bella's Point of View

Reader, I married him. How could I help myself? Yes, Edward Cullen is a little prissy. Yes, he has some martyrish tendencies. He can be a touch neurotic. But he is soooo athletic. I mean, look at him! And, moreover, he is such a smarty-pants. He's the cleverest person I've ever met. And, he loves me as wildly as I love him. So, in conclusion, how could I not?

But not right away. Bella Swan's not getting married right out of high school, are you kidding me? No, I insisted on waiting a decent interval. After another year slogging through Forks High I moved to Berkeley and went to Cal. Edward moved to Palo Alto and went to Stanford. (Take off that red shirt. Elitist.) Our senior year, we both moved to San Francisco and moved in together, commuting to school. Renée is still down under, so we get the flat in Duboce.

My freshman year, I randomly took a vertebrate anatomy class and one thing led to another and now I'm applying to med school. Edward took a comp lit class his sophomore year and one thing led to another and now he is working as a freelance magazine writer. He's also working on a novel, which he intends to get published before he turns thirty. He works from home, which is perfect because when we start having kids he can stay home with them. I'm getting a lot of backtalk on this. We shall see.

So we're about to get married. I know we're still kind of young to get married, at least for people living on the coasts, but hey, so were Romeo and Juliet. And look how things turned out for them! Plus, we both want a big family—once again, abnormal, as Edward says, for people in our socioeconomic class—at least his socioeconomic class—no, Edward, I am not convinced we're in exactly the same socioeconomic class—stop rolling your eyes at me—although actually, in major cities having more than 2 kids is now becoming a status symbol—anyway we figured we'd better get an early start. You can't get married at 30 and then have 5 kids.

And the rest of Edward's siblings, soon to be my siblings, de jure as well as de facto?

Jasper went to West Point, and Alice went to Pratt. Then they moved to Paris. Did Alice really think she could outflank Jasper? Jasper got a job strategically advising French workers' unions how to make their strikes even more outrageously exasperating and extract even more concessions from the French government. Alice changed tack halfway through school and became a book designer. She now works for Flammarion.

Rosalie is in law school at Duke. She is going to specialize in class-action lawsuits and go after those corporations that screw over the little guy and pollute the environment, et cetera. It's fighting the good fight but also rather lucrative. Perfect. Emmett is running an after-school sports program for troubled youth. Those little delinquents adore him and are also kind of terrified of him. Also perfect.

Good old Charlie took up with the widow Clearwater during our senior year and was so busy sneaking around with her that he really fell down on the job of preventing Edward from sneaking around with me. It was a good year. Except for the part about Emmie and Rosie being gone away to college—"I actually kind of miss her," Edward would say in an amazed tone. Anyway, I think Charlie and Sue'll be married one of these days. Charlie's not a fast mover.

And, last but not least, while Cirque de Soleil was touring New South Wales, Renée and her boyfriend fell in love with Sydney and decided to move there. Renée says it's gorgeous like San Francisco with nice warm weather and sandy beaches like LA and outstanding Vietnamese food like Seattle. "I can't believe your mom moved to Australia"—says Edward—"does she hate you or something?" But I figure that just gives us another super cool place to go stay, in addition to Paris, obviously. They are getting married. She is happy to turn in Higgenbotham for Dwyer, though I say she should have stuck with Swan. Edward likes to say that swans are beautiful creatures with long, white necks that mate for life. I like to tell him that he's the chosen one.


But before you go, write me a review—it's my first story, so I'm dying to know what people think. Love, D. Fliegen