Chapter 20: Touching

Jmolly: Complete. Do not ask me for more.

Edward: Thanks for keeping your promise. Bella and I enjoyed it. When are you re-doing 'Minibusted'?

Jmolly: I couldn't leave you unsatisfied, could I? Every bit of your skin has now been touched. Congratulations on that. Why are you even asking me questions? You should be glowing right now. You got 31 pages. You're down to three weeks. We don't want your Bella sporting teeth marks early, do we? Must have that big ole vampire wedding, eh?

Edward: Stop answering my question with another question. Bella always gets mad when I do that. When?

Jmolly (Sighs): Christmas?

Edward: What are you writing next?

Jmolly (Hits head on desk): You are relentless. I'm working on the next chapter of 'Dove', and the first chapter of 'Make Haste'. And somewhere in there, I'm trying to finish my own book. It's not a saga like yours, it's just a little comedy-romance, but you know, I NEED TO GET PUBLISHED.

Leah: Hey! You can't do that! You left me high and dry!

Jmolly (Pinching eyes shut): Heaven help my heart. You see what I have to put up with? Leah, I left you and Ivo in a fade-to-black in Edward's office. Do what you want. That fic is rated T.

Leah (Crosses arms): We want to get married. I haven't had sex in a long time. You could give us a smuttake.

Jmolly: I resent the word 'smut' in connection with my writing. I write lovemaking, not smut.

Edward (Mutters): Erotica.

Jmolly: Fine. Tell Ivo I'll write you an outtake when I'm done the first chappie of MH.

Mulder: You left me and Scully high and dry, too. MONTHS ago.

Jmolly (Hits palm on desk repeatedly, then whimpers): OMG. I have huge plans for you and Scully. I just can't let them out yet. You know, your story is taking on a lot more importance than I originally intended.

Mulder (Raising brow): Really.

Scully: Well, that's some comfort, I suppose. But speaking as a doctor, I should tell you that it is unhealthy to leave a man with blue balls for months at a time.

Edward, Emmett, Mulder, and Jazz: YEAH!

Jasper: Did you all happen to notice that Dona Jessica stopped writing our fics right when we all were due for a lemon?

Jmolly: Go find your mates and leave me be. I need a night off. I need inspiration. I need Anthony. I need to pack the children off to my mother's for the weekend. I need a good-

Edward: If you start using the nicknames, we're out of here.

Jmolly (Arches brow)

Edward: Oh, fuck my life, see you tomorrow!

Esme: Swears jar!

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, and no resemblance to persons living or dead, is intended.

Friday, June 22nd, 2005, circa 11:30pm:

The Hampton Inn,

5591 Victoria Ave, Niagara Falls Ontario

Edward's pov:

Lying on my stomach, I let my mate put her mouth to places that no one else would ever dare to so much as place hands upon. At first, every time her mouth connected with my skin, I flinched and shuddered. I was so unaccustomed to being touched.

"Please let me use the warming oil, Love," she murmured.

The caress of an oiled hand would surely be less intense than that of my mate's tongue and lips. "I guess that's okay. But we should put down towels first," I said fretfully.

"We can always get a shower after if it's going to bother your OCD," Bella reassured me, pulling her lace camisole off over her head. Oh, boy. I shut my eyes, knowing already that it was too much, and then I heard her satin pants slither to the floor. Gulp. I heard her patter into the lavatory to gather some towels.

"There are only two big towels left," she told me, bringing a bunch of little ones.

"Take the one off the mirror," I said, trying not to think about watching her in it. Down, boy.

Moments later, Bella straddled my ass, pumping oil onto her hands and rubbing them together. She smoothed them onto my back, and the oil began to heat. She ironed my tense muscles with her palms, and soon, they began to ripple and uncoil and lengthen. It was fantastic.

"That's better," my mate said, coating me thoroughly in oil. I may have purred a little. She kept it up for a while, then crawled backward down my legs to knead my glutes. "You have a gorgeous ass, Mr Cullen. I just knew you would. I've wanted to do this for a long time."

"Mmm," I said soppily. Her touch was magical. Healing blossomed in its wake. Who knew that being touched could make a person feel … necessary to someone else's existence? My time of separation from Life was ending. My existence had value, because Bella valued me. I started to daydream about the future. About days I planned to spend with Bella. About the honeymoon, and the cottage my family was restoring on the q-t, and life a hundred years hence.

While I was lost in these happy thoughts, Bella's fingers slipped down my backside, and caressed me somewhere where I was dead certain I'd never been touched since infancy. Mmmm… what!

Holy cat crap, Batman! The world spun, and with a jolt I realized I was gripping Bella's upper arms and Mr Ed was laid out right along her pussy. Somehow I had turned over without dislodging her. Was she fazed at all? Of course not. Bella Swan had no sense of self-preservation. And I was about to totally lose my head.

My mate, heavy-lidded and oblivious to danger, slowly rocked forward against my cock. She was slick and wet and beyond my wildest fantasies and she was damn-well going to get herself bitten.

"Don't!" I cried tightly, my grip on her arms bordering on dangerous. With superhuman effort, I loosed my hands a little. "Cover me I bite!" I growled through my teeth.

Bella awkwardly reached outward, hindered by my grip on her arms, grasped a towel, and somehow managed to get it between us. "Sorry, Love."

"Not your fault. Don't move," I gasped, trying to master my physical responses. "Don't move don't move." Slowing my breathing, I tried to ignore the crazy beating of her heart, and the call of her pulse, visible through her fair skin. "Be very still." I counted her freckles, and eyelashes, and the flecks of gold in her eyes. I started to count the hairs on her head, and as usual got lost after the first few hundred.

Shifting my legs a little, I adjusted my mate's position on my lap. Mr Ed could scream for attention all he wanted: it was imperative to keep my Bella safe from the monster within me. I loosened my grip on her arms a second time, and smoothed my chilly palms over them.

"Keep still, Love. I'm sorry if I frightened you. Did I hurt your arms?"

"Are you kidding? That was hawt." Bella beamed at me.

It was totally hawt. Mr Ed wanted us to repeat the experience. One little nip, and all three of us could have our way. Forever. Looking at the ring on my mate's finger, I let go a shaky breath. "You're tempting me to bite you."

Bella's smile dimmed a little. "Do you want me to get off?"

I cocked a brow at her, unable to resist teasing. "Not … literally."

She huffed a laugh. "You are so bad."

"I want you to sit still and let me acclimate to you," I ordered. "And no … writhing."

"Yessir," she said, crossing her eyes and obliterating my broodiness. I decided I was taking myself much too seriously. Lovers touched each other. They didn't consult a Victorian handbook of propriety before doing so.

"Brat," I accused. "It's a good thing you're adorable." She wriggled with delight, provoking Mr Ed to seek out a place to go dancing. He didn't care about style. Mambo or disco? No preference, so long as the venue was hot, wet, and owned by Bella. He had to be stopped. He had no moral scruples whatsoever.

"No writhing!" I said more sternly. "Be still. You're driving me out of my nut."

My mate, forearms resting on her creamy thighs, snorted in a most unladylike way. "Which one?"

I knew I was grinning lopsidedly in response. She never misses the opportunity to razz me. Actually, both my nuts were twitchy. She didn't need to know that. Change of subject: get Bella interested in something less hazardous to her health.

"Bella," I drawled. She sobered up fast, her eyes turning from wicked to sultry.


"Did Alice pack… um…" How was I going to ask without getting myself into trouble again? Great plan, Cullen.


"A… massage mitt?"

Bella gawped at me, her eyes turning dark. I was definitely screwed, and not in a good way.

"I never Saw anything interesting, I swear!" I blurted out. Bella's eyes narrowed, but I didn't meet them. She growled at me a little. How hawt was that!

"Spa Days," I admitted at top human speed, dying of embarrassment, "but my brothers were great protectors of our virtue. They… dragged me off before I ever caught more than a glimpse."

Bella gawped at me, and then laughed like a lady bear, throwing back her head. It showed off her feminine assets to advantage. "Em and Jazz prevented you from Looking at me? We are talking about the same Em and Jazz, right? The ones who rented us a cabin? The ones who stuffed your binder with condoms when we first started dating? The ones who always talk about you 'needing to lose your cherry'?"

"Yes," I admitted sheepishly.

"And they preserved our honour? Oh, that's rich. Are you funning me?" she asked incredulously.

"Not joshing," I murmured.

"You are… so, so naughty. Perv. How come you never acted your age in front of me before?"

I took it she meant the younger number. "Uh, it wouldn't have been proper."

"Holy crow," my mate said with an eye roll, getting up. "You're a lot more fun now that you've shut up the Victorian." She retrieved the black duffel and dug around in the outside pockets, producing the very pink fluffy bath mitt that featured in so many of my daydreams.

"The Victorian is not gone. He lurks," I admitted, drooling with both heads.

"I know." She paused. "I'm glad. I love him, you know. Even if he is a dinosaur."

"You say the sweetest things," I growled. Bella put oil on the mitt and moved to rub it on my abs. I stilled her. "No, you."

"You want me to massage myself?" she asked incredulously.

I bit back a very naughty reply and did my best not to poke her with my dick. Fail.

"Edward Cullen!" my mate exclaimed, highly amused. I peeked at her, and snorted. She was looking at me like she'd never seen me before.

"I am not massaging my clit with a plush mitten," she declared.

I fake-pouted. "Damn."

My minx turned an alluring red. "Oh! You brat! Why don't you take this and massage me with it?" She shoved the mitt at me.

"I can't," I mourned, looking sadly at it. "It's too much at once. I can look but not touch, or I can touch without looking, or I can lie here passively while you touch me, but I can't do it all at once."


"Yet," I agreed.

"Okay," she acknowledged. My Bella was so patient. Retrieving the bottle of oil, she pumped some more of it onto the mitt. Then, she ran the mitt up her ribs and over her breasts. I tried not to expire on the spot.

"Breathe," she warned me.

"Unnecessary, dangerous, and that's my line," I said, using up my air. I watched Bella sweep the oiled mitt over her soft skin, making it glisten and flush rosy. Were I to take her to the Meadow, and repeat this experience, would her skin sparkle in the sun, or merely glisten? What would Bella look like with skin like mine?

My mate's chocolate eyes smouldered as she ran her hands over her shining flesh. She spent a long time touching herself, her pulse throbbing with desire, and then she got a speculative look in her eye. I knew that look. It spelled 'trouble'. Retrieving the bottle of oil, she held it up, over me, and squirted a long stream of oil onto my middle. She watched me like a hawk, placed the mitt on my abdomen, and started rubbing small circles onto it.

"You okay?" she checked.

"Mm," I nodded, taking in a small sample of air. The coconut-scented oil was appealing, and sent heat blossoming between us. Bella drove the mitt toward my shoulder and brought it back down. I breathed her in, slowly, while she gave me her affection. The mitten felt much better in reality than I had hoped. Bella traced it up my shoulder again, and lifted my arm onto her thigh. She massaged my bicep until it was quite relaxed, and then pulled her bare hand down my arm, and used the mitt to massage my hand. I let out my breath, allowed my fingers to relax, and enjoyed it. After a while, Bella put down my hand and reached to repeat her actions on my other side. As she ministered to me, my second hand unclenched.

For the first time in ages, my hands lay open and relaxed upon the bed. Bella got up, and again, my body missed her heat. She sat beside me, one leg folded and the other extended, and squirted oil onto the mitt. Then, she applied it to my left thigh, not far from the site of the old injury.

I thought back to the early days of our bond:

"I want you to be able to dance, and that means getting past this injury, that you got while saving my life. And to do that, you need somebody to work on the muscle and ligament so it doesn't heal wrong. I know you're shy, and I know you don't really want anybody to touch you there. But I need you to be... practical."

"Practical," I echoed, shocked. I was practical, wasn't I? I had been accused of being a lot of things during my long existence, but 'impractical' was not one of them.

"Practical. Somebody has to do it, and having somebody in your family do it? Well, I can imagine you would just hate that. And a human massage therapist can't do it, because they would notice how different your body feels from that of everyone else, and that you don't have a femoral pulse. And that Denali girl is not going to touch you, unless she wants to die. You are mine, and if she lays one finger on you, I will stake her through the chest, cut off her head, and stuff her heart in her mouth. So, let me do this for you, Edward. Please?"

"Okay," I heard myself saying, but then shook my head fiercely. Couldn't I even say 'no' when I meant it? "No."

"Yes," she said calmly.

"No," I reiterated. "It is not proper for you to touch me like that."

"Edward," she breathed in my ear.


"Let me take care of you, so we can go dancing," she whispered, all silk and lace. "I promise I won't try to touch anything else. You can trust me."

I sighed, looking at the ceiling, and hoped my parents were not looking on indignantly from their little puffy cloud. I let her do it.

"The Monday after Tyler's van hit us, the day we were discharged," Bella said, unprompted, returning me to the present.

"When did you start reading my mind?" I joshed.

"The day I met you." She waggled her brows at me like a dime store villain.

"How did you remember that?" I asked, fascinated. Bella always surprised me.

"How could I forget? I had a little Dayplanner. I wrote down all the dates that were special. A year later, I wrote everything out that I could remember, and recited events to comfort myself when…" her voice trailed off sadly.

I put my palm to Bella's cheek, and sat up, pulling her to my chest. "Hush, Love."

"All things happen for a reason," she sighed, resting her head on my chest.

"Huh?" I frowned, drawing letters on her back.

"I memorized a lot of things about us, to keep you real and present. I know all sorts of stuff that most people forget. First kiss?"

I smiled. "Ridiculously easy. Valentine's of 2004. First flowers you brought me?"

"Easy," she smiled, eyes alight. "Thursday, January the 15th, 2004, when I thought you were sick. I came to your house with a delegation from school, and Alice and Jazz had purposefully noisy sex and scared my friends away. Nothing's changed."

"I can't believe you know the date," I chuckled. "Do you remember what the flowers meant?"

Two high spots of colour decorated my mate's cheeks. "Something about eternal love and adoration. Red and white button mums and carnations."

I stroked her hair. "You didn't even know what you were giving me. You barely even knew me." I touched my finger to her nose, and she smiled shyly.

"What did I give you, Edward?" she wondered, twirling a finger through my chest hair.


"Ah. Tell me again about the flowers."

I kissed the top of her head, pulling her close in my arms where she belonged. "Be of good cheer! I love you and admire you. After studying and learning about each other and the world, we shall share a long life, happiness, and a pure and passionate love, and we will live in harmony and be at peace. It's the truth."

"It's the truth," she echoed.

"Yes. The summer caught me by surprise,"I said, writing a name on her back: Mrs Bella Cullen.

"That's how life works," my mate told me, cupping my jaw to beg a kiss. I pulled her lip between mine and sucked it, careful not to share any venom. Bella kissed me back, purring in a happy human fashion. Soon, we were tangled together as usual, treasuring the experience. I nudged my thigh between hers, and pulled her close around me. We rubbed our bodies together in an effort to obtain friction. It was a little while before I realized there was no longer a towel between me and she, and my dick was lying prisoner between both our bellies. I froze, looking at it.

"I wondered when you were going to notice," Bella muttered timidly. "Sorry for taking advantage of you."

"Sorry? No. For what?" I protested, still transfixed. My dick was rapidly bypassing silver for purple, and moisture was gathering on the tip.

Bella seemed to take heart from my response. "I want to touch … you."

I swallowed. Hard. I nodded curtly. "Slowly."

Bella extended one finger and ever-so-slowly touched it to my shaft, and traced it up to my glans. When she circled the tip, I yelped loudly. The pleasure was so intense. Too bad I scared the heck out of my mate. She jerked back, quaking, and I had to pluck her out of the air before she could fall to the floor.

"Sorry, sorry, hush," I cooed, cradling her on my lap next to my now-throbbing-for-release dick.

"Did I hurt you?" Bella cried, clinging to me.

"Ssh. No, of course not," I reassured her. She was wheezing, and her heart was going a mile a minute. "Hush, my Bella. It's not your fault. I was just… overwhelmed." How embarrassing.

"Oh," she murmured, and brushed her finger over my tip again.

"Fuck!" I yelped loudly, leaning back on my hands and scaring her stupid.

"Sorry!" she squeaked.

"No, it's okay." A pattern was developing here. One with which I wasn't happy.

"How can we get you used to my touch?" Bella persisted. I mulled it over.

"We just have to practice," I decided. "And initially, it can't be intense."

Bella nodded, and touched me a third time without warning. I fell over backwards, yelling. "Aagh!" She scooted to the end of the bed and hid. I pinched my eyes shut, mortified. I mean, she barely touched me. Mr Ed was so depressed he started to droop. Seconds ticked by.



"What if I touch you with the mitt?"

"Too much," I groaned.

"What if we, um, blindfold you?"

I made a frustrated noise, and restrained myself from rashly pouncing on my delicate little minx. "Dearest, I don't think I've ever been this frustrated in my existence. Sensory deprivation like that might… intensify the … um…"

"Tell you what: we don't have to rush this. I'm just going to lie down over here and-"

"It hurts," I blurted out.


I opened one irritable eye. "It hurts."

Bella looked devastated. "I'm so sorry. If I hadn't teased you when we got here, maybe-"

I shut my eye again. "No, we were both flirting. It's normal behaviour, Bella. You shouldn't have to apologize for that."

"Don't be upset, Edward. You've pretty much gone eighty years without anybody touching you, right? Like even hugs and holding hands? This is a big change. I can be patient."

I extended my arm across the pillows and Bella rested her head on it. I knew without looking that she was staring at me. I swallowed, wondering if we just should have eloped so I could 'try, just try', sink in my teeth, wait a few days, and never, ever have to go through this again. It didn't seem very romantic, though. And my womenfolk would murder me if I were to cancel the wedding.

"The trouble is," I said slowly, "I can't be patient anymore."

"Ah. Kindly put us out of our misery and juggle the fuck stick."

Something did not compute.

"Hm?" I asked, cracking one eye open again. Please, please, please say 'fuck' again.

"You know, have a session with the Jedi master. Use the Force."

"I'm not following you," I admitted.

"Condition the leather. Go blind. Um… Stretch before exercise?"

"Bella," I remonstrated, totally lost.

"Stroke the snake? Spackle the ceiling?"

I looked at my mate, comprehension dawning.

"Buff the gun?"

"Oh, jeez Louise!" I exclaimed, slapping the heel of my hand to my forehead. "Where did you pick up all those expressions?" Laughter bubbled out of me.

"High school locker room. Collecting them is… sort of a hobby," my mate admitted.

I sighed, shaking my head fondly. "And it doesn't make you blush to say them. Tsk tsk. Naughty Bella."

"You love me naughty," she asserted. "I'm dragging you into the Twenty-first Century whether you want to come, or not."

I eyed her teasingly. "Believe me: I want to cum. So you want Cyclops to fight the five-headed monster until he cries?"

Bella beamed at me. "Ooh. That's a good one."

"I'll have you know one thing," I said, laying on the dazzle.


I brushed a kiss onto her mouth. "It is not a 'fuck stick'. It might be a 'love truncheon', but never will it be anything less noble."

"I know," my mate said breathlessly, resting her hand over my still heart. "I don't want you to hurt for me. Get busy."

"Yes, Ma'am," I agreed, taking matters in hand. Bella rested her head gently on my shoulder, stroking my chest. I replayed the picture of her questing fingers in my head, matching the visual with my own touch. Long stroke, long stroke, palm the head, over and back. Again and again, while my long-desired mate watched in silence. Since Mr Ed had been stifled so many times throughout the evening, it was taking me a long time to get off.

"Use the oil," Bella pleaded, causing my hand to still. I reached for the pump bottle, and drizzled a runny line of the clear fluid down the length of my shaft. I smoothed it around gently until my cock was indisputably looking and feeling its best. Inverting my hand, I wrapped it around myself and gave a hard pull.

"Yeah," my mate encouraged me, running her fingers lightly over my chest. "Pretend it's me. Pretend you're inside me: my body is so tight and warm around you."

OMG she is going to talk me through it. "Ye-ah. Mmm. T-tell me."

I felt Bella's lashes tickle my chest. "We feel so smooth and slippery as we move together. That's right. That's right. Feels good, doesn't it?"

My eyes rolled rapturously as I stroked myself, my beloved's soft voice urging me on. I realized her right hand was between her legs, fondling her nub.

"More, Love. Do it again. Yes. Pull hard. More."

I obliged her, drawing air in through my teeth.

"It's going to feel so good. I can't wait to feel you inside me." Bella pushed her unoccupied hand's fingers over my nipples, leaving trails of heat behind, and pressed a kiss to my shoulder. "Your body is magnificent. You were made to please me. I want to touch you so badly, and we're going to make it happen, Edward."

"Soon," I gasped, feeling energy coil in my balls. My hips jutted up of their own volition, and I dragged my knuckles over the main line of my shaft, while thumbing over the corona. So good.

Bella's breath hitched. "Yes. Yes. I'm cumming for you. I'm marking you as mine. Unnnh!" She arched her head back, leaning on one elbow, and collected wetness in her hand while I grasped and squeezed myself, breathing unsteadily.

"I'm cumming," I moaned, feeling the rush of jism surge up my cock. There was a moment, crystalized in time, in which I watched it spurt, and then my mate's hand descended, dripping, and tenderly smoothed over my cock, combining our most intimate essences. Ohmygod she palmed me! I cried out, every nerve ending in my body exploded, and I was swept away for what felt like hours, surely experiencing the greatest orgasm of my life.

When I came down, Bella was tucked into my side, her hand massaging our jism into the hair on my lower abdomen, and I was drifting in a sea of tranquility, too emotionally exhausted to move.

"Well, well, Mr Cullen," my mate said drowsily, "I think I know how to touch you without getting bitten, now."

I swallowed venom. "Don't push your luck," I groaned, flat on my back. I rolled to embrace my beloved, knotting my fingers in her hair. As they were rather sticky, it was kind of hawt. "That was… the best. Love you."

"Yes," she said, flushed, warm and damp, her heart singing to me. "You didn't stop me. It's getting easier."

"A little." I realized that it was well after midnight. Bella had to be coaxed to rest.

"You want to shower?" she asked me considerately, sliding out of bed to have a human moment.

"No, I want to cuddle. Please kill the lights and the TV. We'll shower in the morning," I said, huffing out air.

"You yawned," Bella accused me, rushing back to my side. "Are you okay?"

I stretched languorously. "We don't yawn. I feel great. Never better. Hurry up, Lover. I want to hold you while we sleep."

"We?" she said warily, and I realized that I'd had a slip of the tongue.

"You know what I mean."

"I'll be right back, she promised. And she kept it very quickly.

"Come here." Bella slid into my arms, and I arranged the bedclothes around us. She tucked her face under my chin, resting her left hand on the small of my back, and the right one between our chests. I tucked my face down, basking in the warmth of our little nest.

"You're warm," Bella frowned. I drew back a little, reluctantly.

"I can't be warm, Bella. We don't get warm unless we bake ourselves under heat for an extended period of time. I'm sorry, Love. You must be cold. Perhaps we should…" I really didn't want to get on top of the covers, "get pajamas on."

Bella looked up at me with concern. "I'm not cold, Edward. I'm sweating. You are warm. You're either turning back to human, or you're sick." She laid her head on my chest and listened. "Nope, no heart beat."

"There's no possible way for me to revert to human, Bella. Sorry."

"I'm not," she said. "You don't feel sick?"

Scratching her back, I pressed my lips to her temple. "I feel … good. Relaxed. Please stop worrying."

"You're saying my lines," she yawned.


"Will you please talk to Carlisle tomorrow?" she pressed.

"Okay. I'll talk to Carlisle. Now, go to sleep. It's late, and I want to take you to the Gorge tomorrow."

"We're going hiking?"

"I'm going hiking. I don't need you falling down the escarpment. You are riding me."

"Ooh. Kinky."

I felt my face crinkle up with laughter. "Shut up and go to sleep." And for once, she did exactly as she was told.


Friday, July 22nd, 2005, 6:30am:

Bella yawned and stretched like a baby cat, waving her minxy boobs in my face. How great was that! I was going to be very, very sorry to take her home. Mr Ed was going to suffer terribly once Charlie got back in the picture.

"Mmm. M'ning Beau-ful."

"Good morning, Sweetheart. You haven't slept long. Are you sure you're ready to get up?"

"You goh jammies on," she frowned. Non sequitor. And terrible English.

I shrugged. "You were shivering."

Bella unzipped my hoodie and slipped her hands inside. "You aren't warm anymore."

"No." I rested my chest carefully against hers, taking rather smug enjoyment from the way it made her tits bump up. She rolled her eyes, took hold of a fistful of my hair, and gave me a shake (I let her waggle me. That was only gentlemanly).

"You still need to talk to Carlisle."

"Yes, Mother." Shutting my eyes, I leaned in, nuzzling Bella's breast, and took a tentative lick at her nipple. Best. Breakfast. Ever.

"Oh, God!" Bella yelped, bucking, but then she groaned and went limp, covering her eyes with her arm.

I eyed her, worried. "Did I do it wrong?"

She grabbed both my cheeks and kissed me hard. "No. You did it exactly right. Do me a favour and hold onto that thought, 'kay?"

"Okay," I agreed, as confused as ever.

Bella ran her fingers between my eyes, smoothing out the worried crease. "Human moment." My mate slid out from under me, taking the warmth of the room with her.

I choked back a laugh, resting my head on my hand. "Don't you dare shower without me," I told her. I heard her mutter 'cocky bastard' under her breath.

"Hmm? What was that?" I asked, biting back a grin.

Bella peeked back into the room, biting back a smile. "I wouldn't think of it."

I am the man.

Mere minutes later, Bella was crawling back into bed with me, warming oil in hand.

"Don't you want breakfast?" I checked.

"I'll eat a Pop Tart," Bella shrugged. "Alice packed them."

"Has she got a sink in that bag?" I blinked. My sister's packing ability was legend in our community. I wouldn't be surprised to find a Porsche in that little bitty bag.

"Hah. We should dump it out later just to see what all's in there," Bella smiled.

"How the heck will you toast your Pop Tart? Hairdryer?"

"They're fine raw." Bella declared, liberating me from my hoodie. She glanced up at me, and growled a little. "Don't wrinkle your nose at me, mister. I don't criticize what you eat."

"I'm not an omnivore, Baby. I don't often get to pick and choose. A Pop Tart does not strike me as being either very delicious or very healthy fare for you."

"You can watch me hunt later," she offered.

"Mmm. And what will you hunt, missy?" I purred.

"Bacon," she said, wrapping her mouth around the word like an apex predator's jaw around an herbivore's neck.

"Sounds pretty sexy," I declared.

"You ain't seen nothin' yet."


Bella reached for the warming oil, and prepared to squirt it into her hands.

"Where's the mitt?" I wondered.

"It was getting ugly. I gave it a bath."

"Sounds sinful. I'm getting ugly," I suggested. My mate dropped the bottle of oil on the bed and grabbed my hand. I let her pull me into the bathroom.

"Tub?" she inquired.

Mr Ed made his feelings on the matter known, by emitting a line of pre-cum that stretched all the way to the floor. We both looked at it, then Bella stretched out her hand and broke the thread. My over-imaginative dick responded in the only way he knew how, by spewing torrents of jism at her. I screwed my eyes shut, mortified. Seventeen-year-old cock forever? Okay. Fifteen? I sincerely hoped not.

"That is so hawt," Bella declared. I opened one eye and peeped at her. My inability to last more than five seconds didn't displease her? Schwing!

Bella reached out to place her hand around my neck. I was so amped up that her palm felt scalding. I leaped back a couple of feet, startled.

"You okay?" she asked, looking a little lost. My stomach clenched painfully, and my throat caught fire.

"I'm very sorry. I need to feed."

Bella looked confused. "But you only fed a couple of days ago."

"I know," I said, avoiding her eyes. "It must be because of all the… s-stimulation."

"Oh," my mate blinked. "Do you have to go now?"

I considered the matter carefully. "I don't want to try and hunt here while it's light out. There are too many humans about. As long as you feel safe here, I'll go tonight."

Bella shrugged. "It's a nice little hotel. What could possibly go wrong here?"

I arched a brow. "Famous last words, Miss Danger Magnet."

"I'll be fine. Can we still shower?"

I was so sorely tempted, but I had to protect my Bella. "It wouldn't be wise to get me excited right now, Love."

"Vampire-speed power wash?" she pleaded.

I rolled my eyes. "Doing it fast would probably only encourage me to sink in my teeth. How about we take our time, but keep it… chaste?"

"Chaste. A naked Edward in my shower. Hmm. I'm not sure 'chaste' is the right word," she said slyly. See? No sense of self-preservation.

"Above the belt?" I managed to choke out.

"M'kay. We can do the unchaste scrubbing tomorrow, when you've fed," Bella agreed, stepping into the tub.

"I can live with that," I told her, cheering up.

We compared the way soap acted on her skin to the way it behaved on mine. Or misbehaved, to be more accurate. It ended with shrieks of laughter and the pair of us jumbled up at the bottom of the tub, fighting to hold onto what remained of my bar of soap. The room was practically invisible with steam by the time we had managed to bathe, and Bella was starting to prune up.

"I need to shave," she told me, "or I'm going to start looking like a Wookie."

"Okay, I'll get out," I announced, rolling my eyes. I realized that we were running dangerously low on towels. No clean bath sheets. We would have to settle for the smaller ones. I took one of the two decent-sized ones, rubbed myself down and wrapped it around me. Retrieving my toiletry kit, I took out my comb and worked it through my hair. Then, I eyed my toothbrush thoughtfully.

"May I use your toothpaste?" I called to Bella.

"What, you have to ask? Go ahead," she encouraged me.

I helped myself, enjoying the taste of the mint, and spit in the sink. The center of my universe was singing Collective Soul's 'Shine' under her breath. She sounded better in the shower. Must be endorphins. And confidence. Heaving a contented sigh, I let myself out of the bathroom and went in search of semi-clean clothing, while continuing to brush my teeth. I rummaged through the bag and extracted my deodorant with difficulty. According to Bella, I didn't need it, but I mean, come on, really. She's only human.

I swiped my stick under my arms and put it back in the bag, and sifted through the clothing. Finally, I decided that the grey jeans were in the best shape. I took one of my clean pairs of underwear and started piling clothes on the bed. Perhaps there was a better t-shirt in the closet. As I passed the mirror, I stopped and did a double-take. Who was that guy? Scruffy, dripping wet, foaming at the mouth and looking awfully mellow for somebody with black eyes. Human, almost. Grasping the handle of the toothbrush, I whisked it cheerfully around my mouth a couple more times.

Knock knock! I'm really sorry to do this to you and Bella, hon', but it's the only way to keep her safe.

I froze, my pupils dilating until there was no iris visible, and gawped at my reflection.


You might want to get dressed.

Jesus, Mary, Joseph and all the Apostles. I have gone mad.

"This can't be happening," I said to my reflection. "She wouldn't." I was so far gone in denial that I just stood and looked at myself.

Ready or not, here we come.



You can go read the rest of the series now. I promise there are many stories to come. My characters won't shut up.