Disclaimer: I own nothing, I just sent Edward to Ireland.

A/N: Thanks to nowforruin and Dinx for betaing this one. They're a million times awesome. This was my story contribution to Fandoms Fight The Floods back in February. I realized that I hadn't posted it here, so Merry Christmas!


Blow My Mind

"A cappuccino, please," Edward requested when it was his turn to order. He was at the coffee shop he stopped at every morning. The line had been slightly longer today than most days, but he was confident that he would make it to work on time.

"Your usual. Aye, sir," the cheerful, young woman behind the counter replied.

Edward frowned. His usual? Just last month he had ordered regular black coffee one day. He didn't remember the reason for the break in his routine, and he hadn't liked it enough to order it again the next day, but it had been a cappuccino-free day. Surely she remembered that. He looked at the crammed coffee shop and sighed. Maybe not.

Edward Cullen had only done one thing that could be described as adventurous in the twenty-nine years he had been alive. And if he was being honest – which he usually was – it had been purely out of obligation that he had been adventurous, thus making it a moot point.

When Edward was twenty-six, his maternal grandfather had passed away. There was nothing strange about that. The man had survived his wife by almost twenty years and lived to celebrate his ninety-second birthday. His death meant that his only child, Edward's mother, Esme, inherited his house. Edward's mother, once upon a time possessing the adventurous spirit that he did not, had at an early age left her home behind and moved to Chicago where she met and married Edward's father. As a house wife and mother of three, Esme had no use for her father's house.

This was where Edward had had the opportunity to be adventurous for the first time in his life. Quitting his job at Columbia, where he had taught math since getting his PhD, and moving half-way around the world to take over his late grandfather's house could have been adventurous. Edward, however, did it out of obligation, family duty, and love for his mother. A house that had been in her family for more than a century could not just be sold to the most convenient buyer, who might never treat it with the respect it deserved. And by the time he had handed in his resignation, he had already secured another teaching position to which he could commute to in under an hour from the house he was taking over. Nothing brave or adventurous about that either.

Edward's grandfather's house was in a small village on the outskirts of Dublin, Ireland, where the neighbors were friendly, and his mother's family so deeply rooted that he felt like he belonged. It was down south, just shy of the county border to Wicklow, and Edward liked the fact that Shankill was a quaint and homey village, but that he could be right in Dublin city centre in less than an hour. It was also where he worked, teaching math at Trinity College.

However fond he had grown of Ireland, there was one thing about the mentality that did not go well with his own. It seemed to be a general consensus that if you didn't get around to doing something today, you might get around to it tomorrow instead. Or the next day. They even had a saying – when God made time, he made plenty – and much as he had tried to adapt, it was just not the best concept for someone who liked to plan, liked routines, and liked things being done at the right time. When an Irishman said that he'd meet you somewhere in a few minutes, it literally meant that he'd get there when he got there.

However, he was very fond of his job. Math was the same everywhere, and basically so were the students. And with the way the education system was put together in Ireland, he had no students forced to take math as an elective. All his students had chosen math because they loved it as much as he did, so teaching them was much easier than back home.

He also loved his commute to and from work. It was a beautiful trip, and it gave him plenty of time to ponder whatever needed to be pondered. The walk from his house to the DART suburban railway station took twelve minutes – twelve and a half if he had to stop for a red light on the other side of the church. The wait at the station was never more than ten minutes, and sometimes he was even lucky enough to be able to walk right into a waiting train. The scenic ride up along the coast to Pearse Street Station took between thirty and thirty-five minutes, depending on the number of people traveling. Five minutes to get a cappuccino, and another five to get to the college campus, then a day full of what he loved and what made the most sense to him – numbers.

"Good morning, Dr. Cullen," Victoria Franova said while Edward was unlocking the very stubborn door to his office. She taught math, too, and had the unfortunate habit to always arrive at the same time as he did. He hated how she always felt it necessary to comment on his clothes or his hair. One time she had even commented on his skin. Her words were insults masquerading as compliments.

"Good morning, Miss Franova," he greeted her politely. He was his mother's son, after all.

"If you don't mind me saying, that shirt is really not doing your skin tone any favors," she said, stopping in front of Edward's office. She tried to stop huffing and puffing after maneuvering her overweight body up the stairs, but she sounded like she had just run a marathon.

"My sister bought me this shirt. I'm very fond of it," Edward replied, struggling to stay polite. When it came to clothes, there was no one he trusted more than Alice. She did write for Vogue, after all. Her entire life was built around fashion, just like Edward's life was all math and numbers. Their older brother, Emmett, was the free spirit. He worked as a carpenter, played football, turned into a five-year old around planes, liked to get drunk, and gambled too much.

"Well, white is not for everyone," Miss Franova said before she walked down to her own office.

Edward frowned, wondering why she didn't practice what she preached. If he shouldn't be wearing white because of his skin color, neither should she. Miss Franova was even paler than he was. In Edward's opinion, everyone's thighs were not meant to be stuffed into white pants, either, and he wished he could tell her that without being rude.

Edward had never really been the type to care much about his appearance. As long as he was clean and wore clothes that didn't look like they belonged on a scarecrow, he was relatively satisfied. He had stopped caring about anything else during his teenage years when he had realized that no matter what he did, his hair was pretty much as untamable as a mountain lion. His sister had deemed the color rusty, and once his brother had called his eyes Heineken eyes. Edward assumed it was because of their color. What else his eyes might have in common with beer was beyond him, and he didn't care enough to ask.

Girls had never done much to convince him that he was particularly appealing to them. And he had never met a girl interesting enough to make the inevitable break in his routines worth it. Apart from a very embarrassing encounter with a girl named Jessica in college, involving a lot of laughing and important bits below the belt not cooperating, he had done what he could to avoid the female sex.

Thursday, after work, Edward ran some errands. If at all possible, he always did his errands in the city centre on Thursday, because he got off work an hour earlier than the other days.

His mother's birthday was in a couple of weeks, and as usual, he would be buying her a gift that added to her treasured collection of Waterford crystal. You could take the girl out of Ireland, but you could not take the Ireland out of the girl. This task was easily taken care of in House of Ireland on Nassau Street, very close to the Eason store on the corner where he went to get a card. He found a nice one with flowers on it. His mother loved flowers.

The weather was nice, so he walked up Grafton Street. If he was lucky, he could squeeze in a few peaceful minutes in a quiet corner of St. Stephen's Green. He grimaced when he passed Brown Thomas. Alice had announced that she was coming to visit in a few weeks, and he knew that she would be spending more time in there than at his house. And he would most likely be blackmailed or tricked into going with her. Alice was small but resourceful. He hoped she was resourceful enough to get Emmett to join her on her trip. It had been too long since he had seen either of them.

Halfway up Grafton Street he saw her. Her beauty transcended that of a straight row of prime numbers or even that of perfect symmetry. Edward looked up for a second, sure he was going to find a hole in the sky from where she had fallen. In a short-sleeved, white shirt – the kind Edward knew from listening to his sister was called a peasant shirt – simple jeans, and a red belt that matched her flat, red shoes, she looked like an angel. Because in that moment, there was no doubt in his mind that angels wore jeans and red shoes. What else could they possibly wear? She had brown curls that were loosely tied up in a ponytail. Her eyes were closed, so he didn't know what color they were, her cheeks were a little flushed, probably from the sun, and her skin otherwise slightly tanned and perfect.

Her pretty, pink lips were wrapped around the mouthpiece of a silver tin whistle, and from it came hauntingly beautiful, familiar, and melancholy melodies. He stopped to listen, joining the crowd that had already gathered. He also stopped to watch. His eyes were drawn to her, and he was glad for the excuse to stop and stare. The music drifted from She Moved Through the Fair over Danny Boy to The Flower of Magherally. Those were the ones he knew, as his mother had sung them at bedtime when he was a child. There were others that sounded familiar, but none that he remembered the titles of.

People came and left, but Edward stayed until the Irish weather did what it did best. It changed from sunshine to rain in just a few minutes, making people scatter quickly. The young woman stopped playing and opened her eyes for the first time since Edward had first seen her. She looked straight at Edward, who was the only one left from the crowd she had attracted. Her lips formed a smile before she bent down and collected the gray newsboy cap on the ground half-filled with coins and bills. She put the money in her pocket, the cap on her head, and winked at Edward before she ran off. He stood frozen in the rain, looking after her long after she had disappeared.

A while later, after he had finally shaken himself out of it, he sat on the DART on his way home to Shankill. The rain had seeped through the paper shopping bag and ruined the wrapping paper on his mother's gift. That meant that he had to re-wrap it himself, and he knew he couldn't do as good a job of it as the lady at House of Ireland. He shook his head and wondered why he was even thinking about that. His mother wouldn't care what the present looked like as long as it was from him and that it contained Waterford crystal.

He smiled as he thought about his mother. He knew he had made her proud by coming here, and it was her fault that he felt so at home. The accent didn't feel foreign because he had grown up listening to it. He knew the culture, the music, the food, and he even knew Dublin from when they had visited his grandparents. He and his siblings were proud of their Irish heritage. Emmett had an Irish flag tattooed on his forearm, and Alice could pull off the most impressive Irish accent. Remembering childhood summers in Dublin made him remember that he used to have a tin whistle. He had played it very poorly while Emmett had beaten the life out of a bodhrán and Alice had sung Molly Malone. That performance had earned them a trip to the zoo out in Phoenix Park.

He had never heard anyone play a tin whistle quite like the girl on Grafton Street, though. He wished he had at least thrown a couple of bills in her hat. What if she was starving out there somewhere? The thought of her starving or not having a place to live bothered him a lot. She was too talented and too pretty to need for anything. If she was his, he would give her the world. It had stopped raining when he exited the DART station, and on the walk home he hummed Danny Boy.

Friday, after work, he went back to Grafton Street. He had been thinking about her all day, and he hoped that she would be playing there again. He had convinced himself that someone who had captured his attention so thoroughly was worth pursuing. However, to his great disappointment, she wasn't there. And logically, she could be anywhere, so going looking for her was fruitless. He even skipped his Friday night visit to the local pub in Shankill, where he usually had a pint with his neighbors. Whoever she was, she had the power to make him break his routines. It was no easy feat.

The weekend was long. Even with two illogical afternoon trips into the city centre, yard work, correcting assignments, planning lectures, and cleaning his entire house, he still found a lot of time to think about the Tin Whistle Angel. She was like a complicated math problem that would stay in his thoughts until he solved it. He just didn't know how to solve her.

Reoccurring disruptions of Edward's carefully planned routines were his brother's randomly placed text messages. Emmett was not a big fan of typing on his phone as he claimed his fingers were too big for the keys. As a result, the messages consisted of as few words as possible. "Skype now," "call me," and "email!" were his favorites, and Edward suspected that his brother had them saved on his phone.

Edward received the "Skype now" message Sunday afternoon. He had just returned from the city where he had searched Grafton Street, Henry Street, O'Connell Street, and Temple Bar for the Tin Whistle Angel. He grabbed a cold beer from the fridge and sat down with his laptop. It only took a few minutes before he was connected with his brother.

"Top of the morning to ya, Eddie!" Emmett greeted him.

"It's afternoon here, Em," Edward replied and opened his beer. "Which is why I'm drinking beer and you're stuck with coffee."

"Ha! That's what you think," Emmett said with a laugh and showed Edward the beer he was drinking. "Beer tastes excellent with cereal."

Edward rolled his eyes. "That's wrong on so many levels."

Emmett belched loudly. "And yet, oh so right. So, how's life on the green isle, little brother?"

"Fine. Just fine. I finished painting the guest bedroom a few days ago. I figured setting Alice up between paint buckets and plastic covers was probably just going to make her difficult."

"Oh God, don't remind me of the little tornado," Emmett said, slapping his forehead. "She came by yesterday and talked my ear off about some dude named Jester or something like that. Then she tore through my apartment with rubber gloves and some cleaning shit that smelled of lemons."

"It's probably better than whatever it smelled of before," Edward said dryly. "But who is Jester? That's a really strange name."

"Her new boy toy," Emmett said, letting out another belch. "He sounds like a pussy. What about you, little brother? Do you have a new boy toy?"

"Just because I'm not a whore like you does not mean that I'm gay. Which I have told you repeatedly." Edward sighed. He didn't like being related to someone who insisted on being dense when he was actually pretty smart.

"I'm not a whore! I just met the woman I want to marry," Emmett protested. "She just doesn't know it yet. We're in the code-talking phase right now. She tells me that she hates me when what she really means is that she loves me. I tell her that she's a bitch when my real point is that she's fucking amazing. Marriage is just around the corner."

"In what world does that even make sense?" Edward asked, shaking his head.

"You know what your problem is? You need to get fucking laid. Or at least blown. Isn't Ireland full of naughty, Catholic school girls in plaid skirts just itching to get into a pair of Cullen pants?" Emmett laughed at himself, sipped his beer, and scratched places on his body that Edward would have preferred not to see. His brother needed to sit closer to his computer screen so he didn't have to look at his entire body.

"That's disgusting, Emmett," he said flatly.

Emmett just laughed and continued to spout his nonsense until he announced that it was time for lunch. Mealtimes were sacred for Emmett Cullen, and although he had finally stopped eating like a hobbit, he still had more meals in a day than anyone else Edward had ever heard of.

The days passed slowly for Edward. His lectures didn't hold his interest like they used to, and the majority of his thoughts were focused on a brown-haired girl and her tin whistle. He started a new routine after work that took him up through Grafton Street, a detour that made him come home almost twenty minutes later every night. There were never any signs of her, and Tuesday he gave the evil eye to a man playing the fiddle outside of Brown Thomas. Wrong musician.

Edward was anxious all day Thursday. He had been out of luck all week, but he had a feeling that if he came back at the same time as he had seen her last week, he might get lucky and see the Tin Whistle Angel again. He let his students go ten minutes early, stuffed his things hurriedly into his messenger bag, and walked quickly off campus. He nearly collided with a group of Japanese tourists taking pictures of the campus entrance. He mumbled a quick apology and ran across the street, narrowly avoiding being hit by a sightseeing bus. It was one of the Viking Splash Tour busses. That would have been a really sad demise.

There was no one playing the tin whistle on Grafton Street, though. No beautiful, brown-haired woman to capture his attention. Edward sighed heavily. He had really thought that today would be the day where he saw her again. It had been a week now, so he couldn't keep convincing himself that she'd be there the next day. He reluctantly turned around and walked slowly to the DART station.

The following day Edward woke up late for the first time ever. The power had gone out during the night, causing his alarm clock to fail in the task of waking him up. After quickly showering and getting dressed, he spilled coffee down his shirt and had to change again. When he was locking the front door, his talkative neighbor, Mrs. Dunne, came up the driveway and started telling him about her cat that had run away. Edward was a man of many talents, but shutting Mrs. Dunne up without being downright rude was not something he had figured out how to accomplish yet. He tried to be sympathetic while continuing to glance at his watch. When she had talked for ten minutes about her cat, she looked at Edward with narrowed eyes.

"Aren't you late for work? What are you doing standing around here for?" she asked with a frown.

He ran all the way to the station where he saw the back end of a train headed north. When he finally did get into the city centre, he was so late that he didn't have time to stop for his usual cappuccino. The day dragged. He had forgotten some important tests at home, the students were wired for the weekend and wouldn't quiet down, and he had a very long and very boring meeting where Miss Franova kept staring at him oddly. It made him extremely uncomfortable.

To say that he was relieved when he dismissed his last class of the day was an understatement. He went to his office and sat down at his desk for a while, staring out the small window. He couldn't remember a day as epically fucked up as this one. He didn't normally use expressions like fucked up, not even in his head. But when it fit the bill…every single one of his routines had been disrupted today, and he didn't like it one bit.

Gathering up a stack of assignments his students had handed in, he put them in his bag and made sure that his desk was tidy before he left. He had an unfamiliar urge to get drunk and wished Emmett wasn't so far away. If there was one thing his brother was good at, it was leading the way to the alcohol.

As he trudged down the stairs, resisting the urge to shuffle his feet on the landings, he realized that he was doing something he had never done before. Something he might even have rolled his eyes at other people doing. He was brooding over a girl – a girl he had seen once, never heard speak, didn't know the name of, and would probably never see again. Edward was no stranger to being called pathetic, having spent most of his life with his nose buried in as many math books as he could get his grubby, little hands on. However, he had never considered it to be true until now. Right now he was pathetic. No doubt about it.

Outside, the sun was shining as if to mock him. He glared at it as he rounded the corner out to the street. He looked straight ahead and there she was, right in front of him, standing by the Molly Malone statue. She was playing jigs on her tin whistle that were so catchy, they made Edward feel like dancing – even if he didn't know how. He crossed the street and stood off to the side in the crowd that was gathering around her. He wasn't sure if it was her beauty or her music that attracted people; he didn't even know what attracted him. He just knew that he couldn't stay away.

Like the previous week, her eyes were closed while she flew through different melodies. Edward didn't know any of them, but he wanted to hear them again and again. As other people threw money down into the cap at her feet, Edward dug out some bills, too. He hadn't remembered to do it last time, and it had nagged him since.

When she stopped playing, people spontaneously applauded her, Edward more enthusiastically than anyone. She opened her eyes and looked straight at him, almost as if she'd known he was there. Her smile took Edward's breath away. After a moment where they just stared at each other, she turned her head and told her audience thanks. She picked up her cap and pocketed the money before closing the distance between herself and Edward, who was frozen to the sidewalk.

"Hi, I was wondering if I might see you again," she said, offering him another smile and revealing a charming, local accent.

"I'm sorry I didn't tip you last week," Edward said in a rush, unable to think of anything else now that she was finally standing in front of him.

She laughed. "I don't want you to tip me. I'd much rather know your name. I'm Bella."

"Edward Cullen," he replied. "Your playing is very lovely."

"Thank you," she said with a small laugh. Squinting up at him while shielding her eyes from the sun, she winked. "Let me take you for a pint, Edward Cullen."

Edward nodded eagerly and followed her down Suffolk Street, where she went into the nearest pub. He had been there a few times before when he had let colleagues talk him into a beer after work. As he had apparently lost his voice completely, he watched her order. She was just so pretty. It couldn't be expected of a man that he should be able to think and talk normally in her presence.

Perched on stools at the bar while waiting for their pints, Bella put her cap and whistle on the counter and looked at Edward. "Where are you from? I have this map of the world in my head, and I love adding mental push pins to it when I meet new people."

"I'm from Chicago originally, but I've lived here a few years," Edward replied, wishing he could think of something funny or clever to say. Other than a math lecture, which he wasn't sure she would appreciate, he was out of ideas, though.

"In that case I have a question. Does the pizza live up to its reputation?" she asked and took a sip from one of the pints the bartender had placed in front of each of them.

"And then some," Edward said with a snort. Embarrassed, he covered his mouth and blushed, but Bella just laughed.

Slowly but surely small-talk turned into her managing to drag Edward's life story out of him, despite his reluctance to talk about himself. He would have much rather heard about her. In turn, she readily revealed what he wanted to know, and he learned that she was born and raised in Dún Laoghaire, where she had spent a big part of her childhood playing on the pier while her dad fished. She also told him that she worked at the tourist office, often played her whistle around the city centre, and that spring was her favorite time of the year because she loved daffodils. That made Edward wish it was spring, so he could bring her big bouquets of them and make her smile.

One pint became two, and Edward started to figure out how to make Bella smile and laugh. He liked both and had a difficult time figuring out which one was his favorite. Dry sarcasm made her laugh, telling her about all the pranks Emmett had played on him growing up made her giggle, and talking about Dublin made her smile.

"Let me show you the pier down in Dún Laoghaire. You haven't really seen it until you've been shown by a local," she said suddenly. "Unless you have other plans tonight, of course."

Edward shook his head. As far as he was concerned, he had no other plans for the rest of his life in case she felt like showing him every pier in the world. "I'd love to see it. I haven't been exploring as much as I could have."

"Aw, where's your sense of adventure?" she asked with a teasing giggle. "You never know what's waiting for you out there."

Edward smiled dryly and paid for the beers, doing his best to ignore her adorable, raised eyebrows. He might not own a sense of adventure, but he had been raised as a gentleman. "I'm not sure I was born with one, but maybe with a little practice I can develop one. Do you think that's possible?"

"I think anything is possible, Edward Cullen. You just have to believe," she said and winked at him as they exited the pub.

They took the DART down south from Pearse Street. Dún Laoghaire was halfway between Shankill and the city centre, so Edward passed by the pier twice a day. He had never taken the time to get off the train and take a closer look at it or the town. He had no time to regret that, however, before they pulled to a stop and Bella grabbed his hand and dragged him with her. Where they were going was something he couldn't quite focus on because he was completely absorbed by the fact that Bella was holding his hand. He was holding Bella's hand. They were holding hands. And his mind was acting like he was fifteen years old.

They walked on the pier, still holding hands, while Bella told him about the pier, the town, and her childhood. They seemed to be rolled into one, and even though Edward enjoyed her stories, he could have listened to her read the phone book and still been enthralled. The way she looked up at him made his heart stutter in a funny way, and as embarrassing as his blush was each time, he liked that it made her laugh softly and squeeze his hand.

Several things happened that night that Edward had no way of explaining how they came to pass. Like how he found the courage to ask her to dinner at a seafood restaurant called Purple Ocean that had amazing crab cakes and an even more amazing view of the harbor. How he was suddenly kissing Bella back down on the pier as the sun set. How Bella went with him on the southbound DART train and told him ghost stories as they walked from the station to his house. How she was sitting next to him on his couch, drinking coffee and asking him about Chicago. And while he couldn't explain it, he certainly did enjoy it. Her presence made him feel more alive, and it felt so exhilarating that it didn't matter that his mind was still playing catch-up.

Edward's eyes widened when Bella straddled him on the couch. Heat rose from the bottom of his feet all the way to his cheeks. Some of it stopped just below his belt, making it clear that the Jessica fiasco from college would not be repeated.

"You're beautiful," tumbled from his lips. And she was. She was gloriously beautiful to his eyes. Her cheeks were flushed, like his own, and her eyes shone with something that was new and exciting – desire for him. Her hair was shiny, her lips pouty and pink, and nothing had ever prepared him for the feeling of a warm body pressed against his own like hers was right then. Breasts, thighs, and heat right where he felt it the most convinced him that the woman on his lap was a slice of heaven. Nothing – not even solving the most complicated math problems – had ever felt as good or been as beautiful as Bella.

Bella's reply to his compliment was given in kisses. Edward quickly decided that he liked replies that came in kisses.

Soft, warm lips against his own, lots of tongue, and stimulation to such an extreme that he didn't even notice that his shirt was unbuttoned and Bella's shirt and bra disappeared. When they broke apart for some necessary air, Edward found himself almost eye-level with beauty that even Pythagoras was unable to compete with.

Bella's milky white breasts.

Edward felt compelled to do several things at once – repeating how beautiful she was, touch the beauty in front of him, and explore it with his mouth. And it was when he did those things that he discovered that he could make Bella make a variation of delicious sounds, as well as make her writhe on his lap – something that felt surprisingly amazing. He also discovered that milky white breasts – at least Bella's milky white breasts – were easily the most distracting things in the world. Suddenly there was a small hand in his pants, stroking him and creating heavenly torture. Why hadn't it felt like that when Jessica had touched him?

Although pinned down by Bella, Edward instinctively thrust up to get more friction from her hand. The moans that he was unable to hold back sounded like they belonged in the movies Emmett had made him watch in high school, but he was too busy enjoying Bella's touch to be embarrassed. After a passionate kiss that made him able to swear – should anyone be interested – that he had seen a glimpse of nirvana, Bella removed her hand from his pants and stood up. She looked like a fallen angel, which was the only thing distracting him from crying over the loss of her touch.

"Stand up," she requested.

Edward complied, hoping his shaky legs would obey him.

She smiled at him – a smile that he would openly admit could make him do anything. She wrapped her arms around his waist, letting her hands slowly drift lower while she sent him another smile that went his mind go blank. After a moment, one thought returned to his mind, and he bravely dipped his head down to claim her lips. That time it was Bella who moaned like someone from Emmett's movies. Edward smirked against her lips a second before she gained back the upper hand. She squeezed his ass cheeks, making him let out a squeak and warm his face again.

"You are so fucking adorable, Edward Cullen," Bella said with a soft laugh. "And hotter than should be allowed. Now, lose the pants."

It was not a request Edward had ever been faced with before, but he wasted no time pushing his pants down.

Bella giggled. "Oh, Edward. I need to be very literal with you, don't I?" With a smirk she pulled down his boxer shorts, too. His proud erection got an appreciative look.

"Sit," she said softly, pushing the shirt off his shoulders.

Once again doing what she requested, he sat back down on the couch. His view was mouth-watering and incredibly arousing. More than one part of him twitched when she palmed her breasts and moaned. After teasing her nipples until she was no longer the only one moaning, her hands drifted down to her jeans. She unbuttoned and unzipped them, slid them down her legs along with her panties, and stepped out of both. Edward made his own lip bleed, biting down too hard on it, when she bent down and reached for her jeans.

Gloriously beautiful, indeed.

He watched with fascination as she found a condom – something he had not thought of, because who the hell could think clearly with a naked Bella around? She dropped to her knees in front of him, tore open the condom wrapper, and grabbed him gently, rolling the condom on him. Edward was surprised her touch hadn't made him spontaneously combust…or maybe not spontaneously, but combust all the same.

Rising to her feet, she straddled him again. "I'm going to blow your mind, Edward Cullen. You'll want to keep me forever," she promised him.

"Yes," he managed to mutter.

He went into stimulation overload when she kissed him at the same time as she grabbed him again, guiding him so she could sink down onto him. Edward moaned loudly as his eyes rolled back into his head. He was going to come if she moved even a fraction of an inch, he just knew it.

"Are you with me, lover?" she whispered into his ear and bit down on his lobe.

"In every sense of the word," he replied slowly, fighting for control - control that went out the window the second Bella started moving, riding him expertly like a stallion.

One of her hands was gripping his shoulder. With the other she cupped his cheek, forcing him to look at her. "Look at me. Feel me. Feel us."

And he did. All over. Inside and out. Again and again. Until he exploded. Violently. While feeling Bella explode, too.

"Consider my mind blown," he managed a few minutes later.

Bella's reply came in kisses.


A/N: Merry Christmas and a happy New Year! Shelikesthesound and I just posted a When the Dust Settles outtake over on the She is Divine profile. Check it out for some Christmas Cheer!