A/N – I know I said that I would be posting this later this week, but it was already written so I figured – Why not?
This chapter is dedicated to sparklevampFTW and MrsEdwardCullenP. The credit goes to them entirely!
So without anymore ranting, I give you the last EVER chapter of It's Always Been Him. Enjoy!
BPOV – Two Years Later
It was a beautiful day for a wedding. Not mine. Emmett and Rose's. No, I had already had my day. On a hot August day last year, I married the man I had loved consciously for ten years and probably sub-consciously for sixteen. Our wedding was small and perfect. We only had family and friends in attendance. The ceremony took place in a small church in Malibu that overlooked the white sandy beach. Our reception was a cookout right there on that same beach under the stars and in the company of those that mattered the most to me. To us.
Looking at the way Emmett was gazing at Rose now reminded me of the way in which Edward looked at me as I walked down the small aisle on my father's arm towards him.
The same devotion and awe. The same love shining through his tear filled gaze. The same loving smile playing upon his lips. The only difference was the groom. I looked back across the dias and found Edward looking towards not the bride walking down the aisle, but at me. The love, devotion and awe shown clearly on his face that had been there on 25th August last year. I smiled back at him and mouthed 'I love you'. His smile grew in response and he mouthed back 'I love you too, baby'.
I had a surprise for Edward. I had only found out two day ago and the only person who knew was Alice so far. She was with me when I almost fainted and after asking me about my symptoms, she dragged me to the pharmacy to purchase a pregnancy test. Apparently, birth control isn't as effective when mixed with antibiotics and my husband's super sperm. Huh. Who knew? Definitely not me!
I wasn't upset. In fact, I was downright giddy about it. I was worrying about Edward's reaction though. We had not discussed having children in detail. All we had decided on was to wait a while. I wondered if a year after marriage constituted as a while in his books?
Now I just had to hope and pray that my plans to tell him went off without a hitch.
The last year and a half had been a whirlwind. Once the dust settled, we found ourselves in a courtroom sooner than we'd have liked. The trail for Jacob, Renee and Jared took five long days. Aro, thankfully, was gracious enough to give me the time off. Funnily enough, he thought I wanted to be there to support my mother through her difficult fortune. His words, not mine. I didn't correct him.
Renee was given seven years in prison with the possibility of parole after four years, Jacob earned a total of twenty years with no parole and Jared got the same. The attempted murder charge stuck. Renee's claims of temporary insanity were laughed out of the court when the court appointed shrink deemed her fit and healthy with a sound mind. I still think she's crazy and definitely not in a temporary way either, but who am I to argue with the professionals?
The swelling of the music brought me out of my thoughts just in time to see Emmett dip Rose backwards to lay a powerful smooch on her. I laughed as other's coughed and snickered. I heard Edward sniggering behind his hand and looked at him with a raised eyebrow in a 'What are you laughing at?' kind of way. He raised his own back in the answer of 'What?'. I shook my head at him. He knew what I meant. He did the same thing to me on our wedding last year, only he went one step beyond and proceeded to pretty much dry hump me right there in front of God and family.
I really couldn't talk though. I gave as good as I got. Hey, you try not making love to your hot as fuck fiancé for two weeks and we'll see how you do.
Stupid sex embargo's. Never again I tell you. Never. Again!
Several hours later and the reception was in full swing at 8384 and there was a throng of bodies making fool's of themselves on the dance floor to the beats of ABBA's 'Dancing Queen'. I was sitting at the head table in Edward's chair while he made a trip to the bar for our drinks. He seemed suspicious that I had asked for just a glass of water but I brushed it aside with the time honoured lie of 'I'm too tired to drink'. He returned quickly and bent to kiss my forehead before placing the drinks on the table and motioning for me to get up. I rose from the seat and he stepped around me. He gracefully sat down and pulled me onto his lap, wrapping his arms around me and gently cradling me to his body. We quietly watched the dancer for a long moment before he broke the silence.
"So when are you gonna tell me?" he asked suddenly.
I turned my head to look at him and was surprised by the nervous look on his face, "Tell you what, honey?" I replied in confusion, though I felt my heart constrict with the lie.
I watched as Edward pulled the white stick from his pocket and laid it on the table before us. I stared at the stick for several long moments before turning back to face Edward. I searched his eyes for anger and hurt but all I found was love and joy. His hand moved to rest on my lower stomach as I continued to gaze into his eyes.
Really? His eyes asked.
I nodded and smiled softly.
His eyes lit up and a wide smile spread over his face, lighting it from inside out.
"Baby?" he murmured quietly.
"Yes." I don't know if I was responding to his nickname for me or the question of my pregnancy, but the answer fit both.
His eyes filled with tears and his hand rubbed gentle circles on my still flat belly, "When did you find out?" he questioned.
I placed my hand over his, "Two days ago. You?" I returned.
"This morning when I went to take the trash bags out. I found it in the bathroom trashcan." He answered, sounding stunned.
"I was planning on telling you tonight at home. I had a whole plan." I shot back playfully.
"A plan, huh? What kind of plan?" he replied teasingly.
I sighed, "I got you a gift. You can still have it when we get home." I offered.
"I look forward to it." He paused and glanced down at where our hands were resting, intertwined, "Who else knows and do you know how far along you are?"
"Only Alice. She was with me when I nearly fainted and dragged me to get the test. I have an appointment with the OB/GYN for Monday. I'm hoping you'll come with me." I answered.
"Of course I'll come with-. Wait. Did you say you nearly fainted? Where? When? Are you ok? Is the baby ok?" he asked frantically.
I giggled, "You're going to be one of those over-protective father's to be, aren't you?" I teased.
He ran a hand through his hair – a sure sign of frustration and then spoke slowly, "Baby, you are my life and now so is this baby. I love you and I need you. More than you will ever know." He whispered as he pulled me closer into his body.
I felt myself tear up at the blatant sincerity in his voice. Stupid hormones. Life should be a joy for the next nine months.
"Out of curiosity; what was my present? I know it's not the pregnancy stick wrapped in gift wrap. So what was it?" he asked after I had calmed slightly.
"You sure you want to know and not just wait to see it?" he nodded eagerly. I pulled out the picture I had taken at Build-A-Bear and passed it to him. It was a stuffed tiger cub with a cream t-shirt and the words 'I'm Daddy's Cub!' emblazoned in red across the chest. I had selected a tiger with green eyes to match Edward's eyes and had had a picture of Edward smiling printed onto the shirt under the letters. I watched as Edward's eyes teared up again only to over this time. He stared at the picture and traced a finger over the word 'Daddy' with reverence.
"It's beautiful, baby. Thank you." He whispered before he kissed me passionately.
We had been through a lot. But we had a lot to look forward to aswell. And I for one, could not wait.
EPOV – Three Years Later
"Ethan Charles, Arya Carlie, get your trouble behinds down here at once!" I heard my beautiful wife yell as I walked in the door. I found her standing at the foot of the stairs with her hands on her waist. I snuck up behind her and slipped my hands around her waist and rested them on her expanded belly.
Yeah, Bella and I had twins the first time and were now expecting another little angel...or terror, depending on when you asked my wife what it was. If you were to ask right now, I'm sure she would say it was a devil child, but that could just be her out of whack hormones talking.
"Edward Anthony, your children think they are Picasso. Just look at my dining room wall! I don't know which one did it, but you had better handle this!" she shouted at me before she tore from my grasp and stomped away towards the kitchen. I sighed. They were always 'My children' when they had done something naughty. When they behaved, they were hers. Which is funny because we were constantly teased that only we could have managed a 'His and Hers' kids.
Ethan Charles Cullen was my mirror image. Right down to my last habit and tick. He had all of my features. My bronze unruly hair, my green eyes, my pale skin and my gangly frame. He talked like me, he walked like me and my mother swore he even threw tantrums like I did at three years of age.
Ayra Carlie Cullen on the other hand was all Bella. Right down to the last freckle. Brown hair with red streaks in the sun, brown eyes that sparkled, translucent skin that shimmered and glowed. Like Ethan, Arya walked and talked like her mother and had the same stubborn streak a mile long.
They- along with their mother and the new addition we were expecting – were my entire world. My whole universe rested on their smiles and there was nothing I wouldn't do to see those smiles. Even face my wife's hormonal wrath.
"Ethan! Arya! Come here, please." I shouted up the stairs.
My children stampeded down the stairs, making it sound like we had a herd of elephants in the house instead of two mischievous three year olds. They came to a stop before me and grinned up at me sheepishly.
"Hi Daddy." My beautiful three year olds lisped, immediately melting me. I still remembered the day they had said their first word. Of course it was 'Dada'.
I was in the lounge, watching ESPN and the twins were seven months old. They were bouncing happily in their swings with the strains of 'Hush Little Baby' played softly on their mobiles. Bella was putting in a couple of hours at the office to finish off the notes on a case that she had going to court next week. She had cut down to part time hours when she went back after her six months maternity leave, but normally would take the twins into the office with her and drop them off at the crèche on the ground floor of the building next door. She only did five hours every other day so it wasn't so bad. Being the co-owner of my company, I could take time off as and when I felt the need to. I had no pressing meetings today, so I opted to stay at home and spend the day with the twins, giving Bella a small break.
Besides, they were my kids too and I loved spending time with them.
I had just risen from my seat to grab a cup of coffee from the kitchen when I heard it. Soft as a whisper from behind me.
I turned back slowly to stare at my son, my mini-me – unable to believe my ears.
I walked slowly over to stand before their swing and looked down at my two angels, "What was that, Ethan? Did you just say 'Dada'?" I asked in trembling voice.
"Dada." My daughter chirped from beside her brother. I gave choked laugh and sank down to my knees.
"Say it again, princess. C'mon, call me again." I begged tearfully.
"Dada. Dada. Dada. Dada!" both my children coursed at once.
I let out a sob/laugh and reached forward to pick first my son and then my daughter up out of their swing and brought them into my chest, hugging tightly as I cried tears of joy. I sat on the floor for long time as I alternately cried and laughed whilst I hugged them and rocked back and forth.
I was still there when Bella came home twenty minutes later.
They said 'Mama' two days later.
I shook myself out of my thoughts and tried to look stern as I gazed down at their cherub faces. I sighed in defeat. I couldn't help it. These two owned me; body and soul. I ruffled my hair and watched in amusement as Ethan did the same, but in contrition. I kneeled down in front of them and pouted playfully making them giggle.
"C'mere you little monsters." I said as I pulled them into my chest for a hug. I kissed each of their foreheads before speaking again, "You know Momma is upset, right?" I asked gently. They nodded.
"Do you know why Momma is upset?" I continued. They shook their heads. I sighed again and settled more comfortably on the floor in front of them.
"What are the rules of our house?" I attempted to lead them to where I wanted them to be in order to understand what had upset their mother so much.
"One. Never hit anuffer in angaw." Ethan started.
"B. Awways be powite and re...re..." Arya scrunched up her tiny button nose in frustration.
"Weepectful." Ethan finished for her.
"Fank oo." Arya whispered shyly.
I couldn't help but smile at them. They were too cute for words.
"And?" I asked.
"Never hurt Momma's fweelwings." They finished together proudly.
I gave them a small clap of congratulations, "Well done. Now, wouldn't you agree that drawing on Momma's walls is hurting her feelings?" I prodded gently.
They both widened their eyes in realisation and looked at one another in slight panic before turning and running to find their mother and apologise. They didn't have to go far. I looked up to see her standing in the doorway to the kitchen with our twins wrapped around her legs and saying 'Swowwi." Over and over as she gazed at me with a loving smile and tear filled eyes. She ran each hand through the twins hair and mouthed 'I love you' towards me before pulling the twins away from her legs and leaning down as far as her pregnant belly would allow to kiss them softly on each brow before whispering that she loved them and forgave them. She sent them to wash up for dinner and then straightened up and beckoned me forward.
As soon as I reached her she brought my head down by my neck and kissed me passionately.
"I love you, Tiger." She whispered against my lips.
"And I love you, Kitten." I murmured back before kissing her soft lips once again.
This was my life. This was my entire world.
A/N – Sigh. That's it. It's done. The last chapter has been posted and the 'Complete' button has been hit. All that's left is to hear from you guys.
It has been quite a journey to get here and I never would have made it if it weren't for all my readers who stuck with me to the bitter end and two very special ladies mentioned in my dedication above– sparklevampFTW and MrsEdwardCullenP. These two have given me the last push I needed to get this finished and I thank them from the bottom of my heart. Without them, this chapter would not be here.
As always R&R!