Chapter 46: Epilogue
Author's Note: I own nothing. I just like to play with the characters that were created by Stephenie Meyer. No copyright infringement is intended.
Also, thank you for those of who have commented and offered well-wishes in my difficult time. It means a lot to me. Writing these stories has been my strength (as silly as that sounds) and has grounded me.
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Chapter 46: The Epilogue
Four Years Later
"David Anthony Masen! Do not hit your cousin!" Edward yelled from the kitchen. I was putting finishing touches on our children's cake for their birthday party.
"He hit me first!" David argued from the family room.
"Come here, buddy," I said as I crouched down. David toddled toward me and stuck out his bottom lip. His jade eyes filling with tears. "What did Daddy and I say about hitting?"
"You don't do it. No matter what," David mumbled. "But EJ hit my arm first."
"Did you do something to deserve his hit?"
"I stole his ball," David said.
"It's your birthday, David. But you made two very poor choices. Ten minutes in time out," I said. I pointed to the bottom stair of our steps and he sniffled as he trudged over to time out. David was an interesting combination of Edward and me. He got his daddy's eyes but my hair and features. He was going to be tall. He came to nearly my hip and he's four. David also had his father's inclination for math, music and science. He was engrossed in Edward's medical manuals, asking his father what things were. He was also smart as whip.
I stood up and ran my hand through my shoulder length brown hair. Edward slipped behind me and wrapped his arms around my waist. "Good job, Mommy," he whispered in my ear. "Happy birthday, love."
"Ugh, don't remind me. 37…" I groaned.
"But you look radiant and not a day over 27," Edward cooed as he dipped me. His lips caressed mine and he blew a raspberry on my neck.
"Unca Eddie is a vampwire," Grace Whitlock, Alice and Jasper's second child, giggled in Lizzie's ear.
"Daddy, gross!" Lizzie said. "Stop kissing Mommy."
Edward righted me and picked up his daughter. He lifted her shirt and blew a raspberry on her belly, eliciting giggles from oldest girl. He looked at his daughter and arched a brow. "It's Mommy's birthday too. She deserves kisses and presents." Lizzie leaned in and whispered something Edward's ear, playing with his hair. His green eyes sparkled and he laughed. "Mommy gets to open her presents when you do, Lizzie Bear. Now, go find your sister." He put her down and she took off, with Grace stumbling behind her. Grace idolized Lizzie and was her shadow. It was cute.
As it turned out, Marie and Elizabeth were identical twins. They had inherited their father's hair color but my curls. Their features were distinctly Edward. They were both petite and clumsy. Traits they inherited from me. My poor babies.
After they were born, our children spent a week in the NICU. Dr. Forks was hesitant to release them with the complication I had experienced with Marie. Edward and I agreed and our children got the best care in the NICU. I spent two days in the hospital before I was released. When we took our babies home, it was a revolving door of friends and family. Edward and I were barely coherent with the constant feedings, changings and screaming bouts. He had taken six weeks for paternity leave.
Those six weeks were challenging. With our lack of sleep and constant company, Edward and I were at each other's throats. I was also beginning to experience a severe bout of post partum depression. I also finally realized that I couldn't have any more children and I fell apart. Edward saw me at my worst and he tried to extend his paternity leave. The hospital denied his request and he was ready to quit. I begged for him to go back and I would be fine. Sue was with me for a couple of weeks after he did go back and I managed to get a few appointments with my therapist and a prescription for an anti-depressant. I actually ended up taking the rest of the school year off. After six months, I had finally grieved my uterus and moved past my depression.
In the fall following our children's birth, I started at Cherry Blossom as the dean. Not a principal, but still an administrative position. Franklin Bendis was summarily fired after being discovered getting head from a teacher in his office while I was on maternity leave. Mr. Merritt was placed into the principal position and Autumn, the dean moved up to assistant principal. They decided to keep that partnership and interviewed several people for the dean position. I got it. I was still under the teacher's contract but got a hefty stipend for my dean duties. I also got my summers off. They were shorter, but two months off is better than no months off. Edward was extraordinarily supportive of my decision and he was very proud of my promotion.
I was putting the candles on the cake when I felt two tiny hands on my leg. I looked down and saw my youngest daughter. I bent down and picked her up, balancing her on my hip. "What's wrong, love?"
She closed her eyes and put her bronze head on my shoulder. I knew not to expect an answer. Marie doesn't speak. She has no social skills. The only people she allows to touch her are Edward, Esme, Sue, Carlisle and me. The educator in me looks at my daughter and sees a child with some sort of developmental delay. The momma in me wants to make her normal. We took Marie to specialists and they can't pinpoint why she refuses to talk. "It's your birthday, Re Re. You're four today. Momma's so proud of you," I whispered. "I love you."
Marie tugged on my ear, giving me a smile. It was her way of saying I love you back. I kissed her forehead and carried her outside to the party. The backyard was decked out with a luau theme. Edward was teaching EJ and David how to throw a baseball. I looked at him and he was amazing. He was still has gorgeous as he was when I met him. He had gotten some gray hair along the temples of his head. However, it gave him a distinguished air to him. He was still in tremendous shape. Jasper, Jacob and Edward all ran the Boston marathon last year and he got hooked on running. His skin was still pale but had a few more wrinkles, predominantly around the eyes because he smiled so much.
Jacob and Ren, who celebrated a commitment ceremony over summer vacation three years ago, were talking with the girls: Grace, Lizzie and their own daughter, Claire, a Chinese girl about six years old. In Ren's hair was a large bow. Lizzie was giving Ren a makeover. No doubt an idea implanted into her young mind by Auntie Alice. Claire was painting Jacob's fingernails and Grace was putting makeup on Ren's face. Alice was snapping pictures with Esme and Sue.
Emmett was chatting with Ben at the grill. Angela and Rose were sitting on a bench, cradling Rose's baby boy, Evan. Rose and Emmett got married in a Vegas extravaganza one weekend after he proposed. They tried to get pregnant right away, but had difficulty. After a few rounds of in vitro, Evan was conceived and he was born in the beginning of August. Angela was pregnant with her baby. She didn't want to know the gender, but she was about to pop.
Sue and Esme were chatting by the pool, their feet dangling in the water. Carlisle and Charlie were planning. I think Charlie was trying to convince Carlisle to go fishing with him. I would pay money to see that. Charlie in his multi-pocketed vest and fishing hat trying to teach a refine Carlisle how to bait a hook. Edward went once with Charlie but got so sea sick that Charlie refused to take him again.
"Who's ready for cake?" I called.
All of the kids stopped what they were doing and ran into the kitchen. Marie and I were nearly stampeded by the parade of toddlers. They all sat down on the booster seats and I handed Marie to Edward. He kissed her cheek sweetly. She tugged in his ear and kissed him on the neck before nestling into his arms. I lit the candles and placed the cake in front of my little monkeys. We all sang happy birthday to my children. Alice snapped pictures
"You get to make a wish, David, Lizzie and Marie, before you blow out the candles. Think really hard about what that wish will be and maybe it'll come true," Esme said.
"I know what I want, Nana," David said as puffed his chest.
"Mine'll be better, David," Lizzie said as she shoved her shoulder at her brother. "What about you Re Re?"
She shrugged and hid behind Edward's shoulder. "Okay, my angels. On the count of three you blow!" I exclaimed. "One…two…three!" David and Lizzie blew out the candles and clapped wildly.
"What was your wish?" Edward asked. "David?"
"I wishded to be a doctor like my daddy," David said as he hugged Edward's thigh.
"Ha! Mine is better, David. I wished to go to DisneyWorld!" Lizzie taunted.
"Elizabeth Tanya, be nice to your brother," I scolded.
"What about you, little one?" Alice asked Marie. She lightly tickled her leg. Marie pulled her leg away and whimpered quietly. Edward shifted her so she was away from Alice and hummed quietly in her ear. "Sorry. I forgot."
"Don't worry, Alice," I said. "We're still trying to figure it out…"
"Let's open presents, monkeys," Edward said as he shifted Marie to his back. She giggled and clung to his neck. David and Lizzie jumped into his now open arms and he trudged back out to the backyard. I went to begin cutting the cake. Carlisle grabbed the knife and shooed me to spend time with my family. Edward placed our children on the bench and in front of them was a pile of presents. Alice took a picture of my children with their presents. Edward cleared his throat loudly, looking at Lizzie. She was clearly the 'Alpha' in their little world. Lizzie elbowed David who helped Marie and they stood up.
"Thank you for coming to our birthday party," Lizzie said with a crooked grin, her hazel eyes sparkling. "We love you and love all of the presents."
"Thanks!" David said as he plopped down, picking up one of gifts. The children tore through their presents, squealing like crazed pigs with each gift. When they opened all of the presents, save the present that Edward and I got them, we asked them what their favorite present was. Lizzie's was a makeup kit that Alice gave her. David's was stethoscope that Carlisle gave him and a child sized medical kit. Marie clutched the large teddy bear with a large purple bow that Emmett and Rose gave her.
"We have two more presents. One is for you guys," Edward said as he pointed to our children. "The other is for Mommy. Since today is HER birthday too. What do you want to do?"
"Mommy's gift! We helpded picked it out!" David screeched.
"Turn it down, boy," I chuckled. "You so act like Emmett at times. Two volumes…loud and louder."
"Sorry, Mommy," David whispered.
"Better, David Anthony," I whispered back. Lizzie grabbed my hand and pulled me to the bench. Marie crawled into my lap and played with my hair. Lizzie bounced on her toes and waited for Edward to come back with my present. He came back with a large box that was horribly wrapped. "Did you try and wrap presents again, Edward?"
"Shut it, Mrs. Masen. I had help. Lizzie cut the paper and David taped it. Marie put on the bow," Edward said as he sat down next to me after he shoved a pile of wrapping paper on the ground. "This is an improvement."
"Sadly, it is. Our children have better wrapping skills than you, Dr. Masen," I laughed. I began attacking the box and opened it up. Inside was another box that was wrapped. I arched a brow and unwrapped that. There were five more wrapped boxes inside the larger one. I got to the smallest one and unwrapped it. Inside was a small velvet box. Edward took the box from my hand and flipped it open. He passed it back to me. Nestled in the box was a diamond and sapphire eternity band. "It's beautiful."
"It's our birthstone, Mommy," Lizzie said as she took out the ring. She slid it on my left hand over my wedding band. "Do you like it?"
"I love it," I said as I looked at the ring that sparkled on my finger. "Thank you Elizabeth Tanya," I said as I kissed her forehead. "Thank you David Anthony," I said as I kissed his cheek. "Thank you Marie Esme," I finished as I kissed her nose. "Last but not least, thank you, Edward Anthony," I said as I kissed his lips. "Love you."
"I love you, more, beautiful girl," he said as he kissed me a bit more deeply. I elbowed him and reminded him of little eyes. He blushed and hid behind David.
"Now, my little angels, did you notice something?" I asked. "Who forgot to give you a present?"
"You and Daddy!" David yelled.
"David, what did we say about the volume?" Edward chuckled as he poked David in the belly.
"Well, we have two presents for you," Edward said. He looked at Jasper who shot up. He ran into the garage and got one of their presents. Jasper returned and in his arms was a squirming bundle of fur. Marie's hazel eyes opened widely and she smiled timidly. Jasper handed the bundle to Edward who clutched it to his chest. "This is your first present from Mommy and Daddy. Her name is Nessie and she's your dog."
"You got us a dog?" Lizzie asked quietly as she crawled into my lap, touching Nessie's soft fur. "What kind of dog?"
"She's a Maltese poodle with a little Japanese chin in her," Edward said. "We found her at the pound and your mother caved."
"No, that was you, husband of mine. When Nessie kissed your nose, you so melted," I giggled. "Now, Nessie is all of your dog. You need to take turns feeding her, giving her water, taking her outside and letting us know if she's sick. You need to be kind to her. She's tiny now but she'll grow."
"Where will she sleep?" David asked.
"In the crate in the kitchen," Edward explained. "She's still a puppy."
Nessie shifted in Edward arms and yelped quietly. Marie pet Nessie and the dog jumped into her arms. Marie was startled but caught the tiny puppy, cradling the dog to her chest. She kissed the dog's forehead and pet the soft, brown fur. Edward picked up Marie and Nessie and held them in his arms. Obviously, the dog will ultimately be Marie's. They were bonding and I had never seen such a look of happiness on my daughter's face.
"We have one more present for you," I said. Alice handed me a box that we stored behind the pool house. I handed it to David. He tore into it and took out five pairs of Mickey Mouse ears. Alice got them for me when her family went last spring break.
"What are these?" David asked as he put his ears on his head.
"We're going to DISNEYWORLD?" Lizzie shrieked. "When?"
"We leave the day after Christmas and stay through New Year's Day," Edward said as he kissed Marie's forehead. "Did you have a good birthday, angels?"
"Yes," we all chimed. I leaned over and kissed my husband. Edward gathered all of us in his arms and held us closely. Alice, Esme and Rose snapped pictures and we ate our cake. A few hours later, our friends and family left. Edward and I put our children to bed. Trying to separate Marie and Nessie was troublesome. Marie had a bit of a meltdown when we took her dog from her arms. Okay, a big meltdown. We only calmed her down when we promised to leave Nessie's crate in her room.
Edward and I plopped down on the couch and I drank my wine. "I'm so tired, Edward."
"Me too. Marie's tantrum really threw me for a loop," he said as he furrowed his brow. "I'm really worried. She's four and she doesn't speak. She doesn't like to be touched."
"Maybe she's autistic?" I suggested. "We had a boy at Chapel when I first started teaching who displayed symptoms like that. I don't know. I'm not a doctor and it pisses me off that the doctors don't even offer it as an option."
"I'm not a psychiatrist, but her behaviors are not normal for a four year old. Perhaps we should consult a specialist."
"We've been to so many, Edward."
"I'm thinking a colleague of Tanya's. She was the best besides my first wife. Dr. Kate Diamante. She's based out of Virginia Mason so we'd have to fly to Seattle," Edward said.
"Anything for my little girl," I said as I curled up against his chest.
"Anything for our little girl, love." Edward's strong arms wrapped around me and he pulled my chin up. I looked at my gorgeous husband and kissed his lips softly. "What do you want for your birthday, love?" His voice had a husky tone and he wanted some.
"Sleep," I giggled.
Edward growled and scooped me up in his arms. "You'll sleep later," he said as he carried me up the stairs. "I have orgasms to give my wife on her birthday."
"You best be going to her," I laughed as I played with the hair at the nape of his neck. Edward narrowed his eyes and put me down. His mouth crushed against mine and his tongue plunged between my lips. I moaned as tangled my hands into his hair. Edward's arms reached my legs and he lifted so I was wrapped around his waist.
"Mommy? My tummy hurts," Lizzie called from upstairs.
"Fuck me," Edward grumbled as he lowered me. "To be continued?"
"To be continued…"
A/N: After much debate…I will be doing a sequel. There story is not done. As you can see, Marie has some issues and seeing the dynamic between Edward, Bella and their children is an important story to tell. Please let me know if you enjoyed the epilogue. Also, if you or someone you know has a child with autism and you'd like to share some insights on that, please PM me or leave a review. I'm an educator and I only know what I've seen in my classroom with children with autism.
See you next time! Leave me love or hate or chocolate bon bons! xoxox