Not betad. But Just4ALE helped me with this chapter because she's lovely and generous with her time.
Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.
When we get back to our room I'm awkward for a moment before Edward grabs his pajamas and announces he's going to change in the bathroom. For all the nights we've spent together I'm not sure what the protocol is for changing in front of someone who's never seen me naked. I quickly put my pajamas on and wait until Edward comes out so I can get ready for bed.
Once I'm in the bathroom I brush my teeth and wash my face, all the time trying to find what at one time seemed like an endless supply of anxiety. But there is none. I'm nervous, for sure, but it's the pleasant kind that makes my stomach jump every time I think about what's waiting for me on the other side of the door.
I take a deep breath and walk out into the bedroom. I climb in next to Edward; his eyes are closed and I wonder if he's sleeping. It's been a long day and I wouldn't blame him, but I'm disappointed.
I slip under the covers and lay on my side next to him, watching him while he sleeps. Then Edward puts an arm around me and smiles, keeping his eyes closed.
He hums and pulls me closer so we're on our sides, facing each other. "I'm sleepy, but you're beautiful and in bed with me. I am a man, after all."
"That you are," I say, leaning over and pressing my lips to his. He places a hand on the back of my head and kisses me back, opening his mouth and touching his tongue to mine. His kiss is so soft and gentle and he tastes like toothpaste and Edward. I sigh at the comfort his familiar feel and taste brings me.
I hook my leg over his hip and pull myself closer. The fire has died out and it's chilly and he's always so warm.
We kiss and kiss and kiss some more. We're comfortable with this by now. Our hands roam more freely than ever before, though, and the first time his hand makes contact with my breast, I gasp.
He pulls away quickly. "Sorry," he mumbles.
"No, don't be," I say, taking his hand and placing it back on my breast. "That was good."
He gives me a small smile. "Yeah?"
"Yeah," I say, pulling him back into a kiss. He touches my breast so gently, almost as if his hand isn't there at all, but it ignites a fire in me that settles between my legs.
I pull him toward me until his body is on top of mine, covering me like a blanket. His weight on top of me is reassuring somehow.
We tangle our legs together and continue to kiss and touch. I run a hand up his back, under his t-shirt and on his bare skin. "Your hands feel so good," he whispers in my ear.
I feel him hard against my hip, but he never moves, just like always. But it's different now. I want him to know it's okay, that I want him and I'm not afraid anymore. I shift myself so we're flush against each other and he moans loudly into my neck, lifting his hips and then settling down between my legs.
I move my hips just a fraction–feeling him against me leaves me breathless. It's been so long since I've experienced anything like this; my stomach is flipping wildly and I'm sure I've never felt this good before.
I lift the hem of his shirt and he helps me pull it over his head. I touch him, running my hand gently across his bare chest. It feels as beautiful as I imagined it would; toned and hard with the lightest sprinkling of hair.
I pull him back down on top of me and wrap my legs around his waist. I love how he feels between my legs and all I can focus on is the movement of our hips and his lips on my neck. "Oh God," I say with a moan.
"Bella, I..." He trails off and lifts his head, kissing me with a groan. I thread my hands through his hair and close my eyes, wanting to be washed away in the way he's making me feel.
He leans to one side and with his other hand, starts to work the buttons loose on my pajama top. That's when I notice his hands are trembling. So much so that he's becoming frustrated with his inability to grasp the buttons on my top.
"Edward?" I ask, putting a hand on the side of his face.
He looks at me with wide eyes and swallows loudly. He rolls off of me and sits with his back to the headboard.
"I'm sorry," he mumbles, running a hand through his hair.
"What's going on?" I ask, sitting myself next to him and taking his hand.
He takes a deep breath and looks at some point over my shoulder, his expression both embarrassed and upset. "I've only ever... been with one person, and the last time was over two years ago."
"That's okay. It's been just as long for me," I tell him. But he doesn't look convinced and I start to panic, thinking he might not want me after all. Maybe he's making excuses.
"I'm... I want to make you happy," he says, leaning his head back and looking at the ceiling. "I want this to be real and... I can't... If it's not..." He groans and runs a frustrated hand through his hair.
I open my mouth to tell him he's being ridiculous, but shut it quickly. He's not being ridiculous. He's being honest.
Since we've known each other, he's always been the strong one. We're here and together because of him. He's been incredibly patient and understanding while I worked through my past. And while he may be better at dealing with it, I tend to forget he's been hurt as deeply as I have. I suddenly realize I've taken for granted that he was ready to move on without any ramifications from his past. I was wrong. He was blindsided by the dissolution of his marriage and has the same fears I do.
I let go of his hand and straddle his lap, placing my palms on either side of his face. I swallow the fear I feel because he's been carrying us on his shoulders for months. For once, I need to be strong for him and reassure him the way he reassures me. He's been pushing his fear aside for me and I need to do the same for him.
"I'm not going anywhere. I only want you." The words come easier than I ever thought they would. Because they're true. I think of those three magical words and I want to say them, but I can't. Not yet. "I care so much about you."
He looks both relieved and happy but he makes no move to kiss or touch me.
I lean over and kiss him, slowly and softly, and quickly undo the buttons on my top, sliding it off my shoulders. I pull away and he gasps, his eyes darting from my bare chest to my eyes and back again. He puts one hand on the back of my head, pulling me into a kiss, and the other on one of my breasts. He runs his thumb across my nipple and I moan loudly into his mouth, shifting my hips in his lap.
When he places his hands on the small of my back and pushes me forward so he can wrap his lips around my nipple, I'm incapable of further coherent thought. I rest my forehead on top of his head and try to catch my breath, but he doesn't let up. His mouth moves to my other breast and his hands are tight on my waist. I rock my hips into his; he's so hard and I'm more aroused than I ever recall being. There's nothing scary or wrong about something that feels this good.
I run my hands down to the waistband of his sleep pants as he pulls away from me. He leans his head back against the head board while I lower his pants, then get off the bed and pull them off. I take my own pants off and he stares at me. "So beautiful," he whispers as I position myself over him again. He runs his hands across my bare body; my arms, my breasts, my back, my stomach, and my ass. He traces my c-section scar with his finger and the smallest smile graces his face. I feel self-conscious, but I want him too much to stop and stew in my insecurities.
I lift myself and he helps me position himself at my entrance. Slowly I lower myself onto him, clutching his shoulders, a long moan coming from my throat. Once he's fully inside I rest my forehead on his shoulder and he wraps his arms around me. His breathing is as labored as mine and when I lift my head to look at him, his expression is almost dazed.
He takes my face in his hand and kisses my mouth. "You feel so good," he says with a moan. "God, Bella."
I rest my forehead on his and move my hips, starting a gentle rocking motion which Edward matches. He pulls his legs up, changing the angle of our thrusts, and moves away from the headboard so I can wrap my legs around him.
I pick my head up and he looks in my eyes, smoothing the hair away from my face. "I... Oh, Bella, I'm so–" He cuts himself off with a kiss to my mouth and I weave my fingers through his hair, making him moan.
I'm sure I've never experienced anything like this. I feel loved and beautiful and like this is something so much more than sex. I feel, perhaps for the first time, that this act is a true expression of feeling and the physical aspect is almost an afterthought.
Though it doesn't exactly feel like that when he puts his hand between my legs and touches me. I throw my head back, moaning loudly. I increase my pace, chasing my orgasm and kissing Edward hard on the mouth.
"Are you..." he asks.
I nod and hold tight to him. "Yes, oh God. Don't stop," I say with a gasp.
Edward's lips latch onto my neck and I'm there. My body goes rigid and then the wave of my orgasm crashes through me again and again. I'm aware of saying Edward's name and him holding me tightly as I ride it out, and then Edward's strangled cry into my neck.
Once my breathing is under control I lift my head and look at him. His eyes are closed and his head is back against the head board. "Hey," I say.
"Hey." He smiles shyly at me and gathers me into his arms. I rest against his chest as he runs a hand through my hair. I'm suddenly exhausted, but completely content. The regret I was so sure I'd feel just isn't there.
"You're unbelievable," Edward whispers, kissing the top of my head. "Thank you. I'm sorry about... before."
I can hear the embarrassment in his voice and I kiss chest and snuggle closer. "You have nothing to be sorry for," I say sleepily.
He sighs and kisses my forehead. "Let's sleep," he says.
I nod, disentangle myself from him, and lay down. Edward lays next to me and holds me close and I'm asleep almost instantly.
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