Stephenie Meyer owns Twilight. I am just using the names that she created for her wonderful story.

Any mistakes are solely mine...blah blah know the drill. I love my beta, though. I heart her hard and can't wait for the next project we're doing together!

Chapter 52

A Life Worth Living

Edward was nervous the entire way back to their house. It had been hard on him to let Allison with Renee and Charlie...much harder than he realized it would be. It had been a different feeling when he was leaving her with Bella but it was difficult to think that his daughter was away from both of them. If it wasn't for that, he would still admittedly be nervous. He hoped everything went as well as he'd planned and he was at least able to breathe a little easier knowing that it was warm enough to pull off his plan. At least the weather was cooperating.

He helped his new wife out of the car, which was a little more difficult than normal considering her big, puffy skirt. When he went to get his bag out of the back, he saw her heading up the stairs towards the front door. "Wait!" he yelled, anxiously grabbing the bag and watching her turn to look at him in surprise. Jogging up the stairs, he smiled and scooped her up in his arms. "I have to carry you over the threshold, Mrs. Cullen. It's tradition."

She giggled and leaned into him. "Of course, how dare I forget..."

With her in his arms, her chest just a few inches from his face, he had to have her. The other surprise could wait but the need to lay with her as man and wife was too much. He didn't set her down until they were in the bedroom and he was able to set her on the bed. She just leaned back on her elbows and slid herself to the middle. He was grateful that Diesel was tied outside. It was just the two of them now.

Jasper had come through for him big time and, as he went around lighting the candles that had been set around the room by his best friend, he promised himself that he would help his friend find a girl and repay the favor. Bella just had an amused smile on her face and was playing with one of the rose petals on the duvet. "You didn't have to do all of this, Edward."

"I wanted to. You deserve candles and flowers and...chocolate covered strawberries in heart-shaped boxes. I'll never forgive myself for the way our first time together was."

"You mean the way you gave me the first orgasm I'd ever had and it was so good it scared me and I walked out?" she teased.

"No. The way it was rougher than you deserved and the fact that it was on my couch. I want to erase that. I want our first time as a married couple to mean something more to you. I want you to trust me completely and I want you to feel that safety net most people don't even consider when they're having sex. It's on my list, remember? I want you to be uninhibited and trusting with me when we're in bed."

"Alright, enough with the candles and the sweet talking. Get your sexy, tuxedo-clad ass over here, husband."

He smiled and stalked over to his new wife. "I'm very excited to see these naughty panties you mentioned earlier."

"Well," Bella smirked suggestively, "I can describe them pretty well."

"Oh, really?" he asked, now beside her and running his finger up and down her arm.

"Yeah. They're pure white. Very lacy...or at least only lacy. They aren't very...anything...since there are very little to them at all..."

There was low, guttural sound that came from him, which he had no idea he could even make. "Well," he grinned, sliding down her body and ending up the bottom of her dress, "I still think I need to see them. You know, just to be sure you're not lying..."

"And they're wet..."

That was all he needed. Running his hands under the skirt and up her legs, he pushed the dress up with his shoulders as he went. Bella just laughed as he struggled to get under it and arched her back. Looking up at her, his attention caught, his mouth began to water while she reached behind her and unzipped something near her lower back. It loosened the skirt enough that he realized it was a two-piece dress and the skirt part was being slowly lowered down over her hips. Watching her pull her skirt down, his heart sped up and there was a lot of blood pumping to an organ that wasn't his heart. "Baby...holy...fuck..."

She was now in a pair of white stiletto's, looking down at him as she looked down at him with her long, dark hair flowing down her shoulders. The curly locks ended just above her breasts. The corset top kept her covered but the white, barely there panties were the only other thing she was wearing-besides the stiletto's that were on her feet. Her long, provocatively bent legs connected the shoes to the rest of her outfit. He wanted to worship her, to kiss every inch of her bare skin, but the need to take her was overpowering him. "Bells, seriously, you're gorgeous. I love you so much. So fucking much. This is killing me, though. Is it really necessary for one person to be this sexy?"

"Edward," she whispered, the seductive smile fading away into a little pout as she wriggled in anticipation, "please."

That was it. Pushing the discarded skirt away from them, he reached up and pulled the tiny panties off of her. She really was wet...and so pink. Spreading her legs wide, he brought his lips down to her more intimate ones and licked her nub. She tasted so good but he slid up her body to make contact with her nipples. Since the first time they'd had sex since Allison was born, he'd taken milk from Bella and realized he really liked it...and it was way more erotic than he expected to feel about it.

"I love the tux, baby, but take it off."

Edward laughed and lifted his head from her chest to look her in the eyes. "Yes, mam."

Stripping off the tux, he crawled into bed beside her and she wrapped her arms around him before kissing him deeply. Her hands began to explore and he sucked in an excited breath as her hand slid inside the opening of his boxers. Considering the fact that he was rock hard, her hand was easily able to wrap around his shaft. Working her hand hand up and down, Bella licked his neck and bit down gently. Grabbing her arm, he grunted out for her to stop and slid away a little bit. Bella knew what had almost just happened and smirked, "What's wrong, Mr. Cullen?"

"Mr. Cullen wants to be inside Mrs. Cullen when that happens least the first time it happens tonight."

Becoming serious now, a slow smile came across her face and she cuddled into him. He heard her breathe in deeply and, as if her deep breath relaxed him, just like that, he was calm and ready to make love to her slowly. He knew she was wet with her own juices and a bit of his saliva but he still ran a hand down the plane of her stomach, through her curls, and over her little pile of nerves. She moaned and arched her back as he looked down at her. When she was wiggling and muttering incoherent words, he stopped. The corset was still on and he tucked the tops of the cups down so that her breasts could rest on them, exposed to him. He got to work on each nipple, milk flooding his mouth each time and he wasn't embarrassed about it.

When he decided that he'd had more than enough and she seemed to be getting anxious, he slid up her body and kissed her before looking into her eyes. "Do you want me to wear a condom tonight or not?"

"No...but you should. I'm not quite ready for that again.."

"Hey, don't get upset. I'm not really up to another baby yet, either. I just wanted to make sure you didn't want to try on our wedding night."

"I love you," she smiled, as if there was nothing else she had to say.

Returning her smile, he felt her run her hands over his muscular upper arms as he reached over to grab the box of condoms from their bed stand. He made quick work of it and once he was protected, he covered her body with his again. Leaning down to her ear, he whispered that he loved her as well and pushed gently into her. The condom did little to take away from the experience of being inside of her and he moaned against her lips as their mouths came together for a deep kiss.

When the feelings were becoming too intense for them to keep their lips locked, he slid his hands down around the back of her hips and they came to rest on her ass. Cupping her tightly with each hand, he held her as close as he could, loving the way her body fit with his perfectly. Deep inside of her, as far as he could go, he stayed that way, connected with her and began to kiss her neck. She was moving her hips, obviously excited by how full she was with him inside of her.

When she arched her back, trying to put space between them so she could feel him moving, he let himself increase his pace and quit teasing her. By the time they were done, her makeup was smeared, her hair was everywhere, he could feel the scratches she'd left on his back with her nails, and they both were covered in sweat and milk droplets. He'd never felt so satisfied in his entire life.

"Don't fall asleep. Come on. It's early yet. I have another surprise for you," he practically begged, literally pulling her into a sitting position in his arms.

They navigated their way downstairs, him in a pair of stretchy shorts and her in only the pink, fluffy bathrobe he had bought her for Christmas. When she stopped at the bottom of the stairs and turned to look up at him, he smirked and held up the tie from his tux. "Do you trust me?"

She frowned for a minute before shaking her head and nodding with an uneasy smile. "What do you have in mind."

Bringing the tie to her face, he blindfolded her with with silky material and lead her gently to the back door. The rarely used door creaked open with a funny sound and they stepped down onto the cement sidewalk. Edward was impressed with himself as he looked around with a smile. The purple lounge chairs complete with a glass table which had a purple umbrella sticking up through the middle of it looked great. He was just grateful that the weather was still on his side. Bella didn't know but when Emmett and Jasper came in a few days ago for the wedding, while Bella and her mom took the kids to the Swan's, the guys opened the pool up for the year. It was ready to go, even though it was a couple weeks before Memorial Day, and he couldn't wait for Bella to use it.

Looking around them one more time, just to make sure there were no big cracks or holes in the tall privacy fence around the pool, he confirmed that it was safe to do what he planned next. The privacy fence had been put up by himself and Charlie a week ago and was set up so that it would also keep Allison from falling into the pool when she grew up and wanted to crawl or play in the backyard. Edward knew that Bella knew about that, it was pretty obvious, but when they opened up the gate to it and went in, he knew she'd be surprised when he took off her blindfold.

Edward also knew, from this point on, he would only be able to carry out his plan until she became too uncomfortable and anxious about it. He would only push her so far. "Are you cold?" he asked, facing her now.

"No. It's warm out here still."

Softly, and with as much kindness as possible, asked, "Will you take off your robe for me, baby?"

She froze for few seconds before reaching out and feeling for his arms until he stepped closer to her and she could reach them. "Here? Right now?"

"Yeah, Bells. Right now."

"But...Edward," she choked, "we're outside..."

"Trust me, Bella. I'd never let you do something that would embarrass you. It's just us here and we have the fence around us. Take off your robe, love."

She bit down on her lip, deeply anxious now and he was just about to throw out his plan and pull the blindfold off of her so she could see when he got an idea. Sliding off his shorts, he stood naked before her and took her hand. Not wanting to ruin the moment by placing her hand where he'd feel like a pervert for doing so, he lifted her hand from her side and brought it to rest on his naked hip. Rubbing her hand over the area low enough, he made her realize that he was naked now, too. She must have taken strength from that knowledge because she took a deep breath and let the soft material fall down her naked body in a pink wave.

Her arms immediately came up to cover her chest for modesty purposes but he was fine with that. It was what he expected and didn't hinder the next part of his surprise at all. "Still trust me?" he whispered, pulling her into him and kissing her exposed shoulder.

"I can't stop."

Walking with her, albeit a little awkwardly, he edged them both closer to the steps that led down into the in-ground pool. Checking to make sure that Jasper remembered to stoke the wood furnace that was attached to it and heated the water, he smiled at the warmth he felt and eased himself onto the first step. Taking her hand he coaxed her down with him. A smile broke across her face as she realized what was happening. His new wife was practically beaming as he lead her down the steps and into the three-foot deep water. "Just a little farther, Bells."

When they finally reached the middle of the pool, right at the point where the water was covering her breasts, he kissed her mouth before taking off the blindfold and kissing the spot right beside each of her eyes. "Welcome to your new pool, Mrs. Cullen."

She was crying now and wrapped her arms around him quickly, causing water to splash over them and wet her hair. "You even heated it!"

"And if you get cold, Em and I got the hot tub to work. There was just something wrong with the one hose..."

She cut him off, though, kissing him deeply and wrapping her legs around his hips. Rubbing against his swollen member again, he took her by the hips and pulled her away gently. "We have the rest of our lives to have pool sex. Right now, I want to watch you swim. While I shamelessly couldn't wait to consummate our marriage in the bedroom, I was serious about wanting you to be treated the way you should have been the first time we were together. Now, I want you to get to enjoy what you loved doing and haven't done in years."

Fondly smiling up at him, she nodded and turned, heading towards the shallow side. Edward frowned, not wanting her to get out of the pool. He briefly wondered if maybe having a pool in her backyard was too much of a reminder of what had happened to her. He noticed, though, that she hadn't gone up the steps. In fact, she was off to the side, staring right past him at the other end. Lowering her slim body into the water, she kicked off the side and Edward watched her glide past him easily. Her arms moved gracefully and her legs kicked behind her under the water.

He was beaming now, completely impressed with the way she took the turn at the other end and made her way back to the side with the steps. He could remember watching the Olympics as a kid and trying to turn around when he reached the other side the way the graceful swimmers always had. He never could do it right but Bella seemed to have it down to a science. After three laps, her pace had quickened and all he could do was watch his new wife in awe. A lump formed in his throat as he realize just how natural it was for Bella to be in the water.

Swimming, being with her mother, and spending time with her beloved grandmother was what had been natural and normal for Bella. By taking her out of her safe, happy environment, and especially by taking her out of the water the way Mike had done by putting an end to her swimming career, it was like clipping the wings off of an eagle. His Bella deserved true love, where she didn't have to be afraid of the man...or her life. Taking her our of her natural habitat and treating her in lesser ways than she should have been treated had nearly destroyed her.

Even though Edward now had Bella as his wife and a beautiful daughter...and a decent job, he knew that he would never be completely happy until she was. It could take years until his Bella was close to being the same girl she was before everything had happened...or it may never happen at all...but he would be there to try to help that progress along as much as he possibly could.

Pulled out of his inner musings by arms wrapping around him and the feel of breasts against his naked back, he turned to find Bella with her hair slicked back, smiling happily at him. "I was actually tempted to ask you what my time was on that last lap."

He chuckled and put his arms around her again. "Amazing. That's how your time was."

"Well, since I did so well, I think I deserve my prize," she teased, reaching down between them and taking him in her hand.

Edward's knees grew weak but he stayed standing in the water and nodded his head. "I suppose, Mrs. Cullen. The problem is, it seems that I may enjoy your prize just as much as you and I didn't even do any of the work."

With a devilish grin and the licking of her lips, Bella shrugged. "I'm totally willing to share, Mr. Cullen."


"Look, Daddy!" Allison yelled, causing water to fly all over the place as she waved her arms excitedly from where Bella was holding her in the shallow end of the pool. As soon as his eyes were on her, Allison pushed Bella's hands away and swam over to the stairs on her own. He couldn't believe that she had just turned two a few months ago but could believe that she was swimming on her own better than he ever could. Edward watched as mother and daughter swam together and had to laugh at Bella's instinctive urge to hold her daughter above the water every now and then.

"Good job, Ally!" he called out to her. Around the time Allison started saying 'daddy', he started to come to terms with the loss of his sister and learned that he couldn't seem to mind using Alice's nickname for his daughter the way he used to mind it when she was still a small infant. Alice would always live on in his life and he felt stupid for thinking he could deny that.

Bella just shook her head in amusement at their little fish and looked over to him. He loved days like this when he could just lounge around with his family. While Bella and his firstborn played in the water, his eleven month old son slept soundly in his arms, wrapped up in his own little beach towel. Benjamin Charles Cullen had been conceived just a few months after they were married. While they had gotten caught in the moment a few times and not used birth control, they were hoping that the old wives tale of not being able to get pregnant while breastfeeding would ring true. It had worked for a little while but only for a few months.

Smiling at Bella as she splashed Diesel, who was doggy-paddling around the pool with them, he knew they were more than aware now that the breastfeeding rule definitely did not work-at least for the Cullen family. He was grateful that his mom managed to convince his dad to move to Forks just a few blocks away from them in the opposite direction of Renee and Charlie. It had only been a few months after Bella found out she was pregnant with Benjamin that his parents had called and told him about it. It couldn't have come at a better time. Edward was completely taken by surprise when Bella had told him she was pregnant again and was trying to figure out how they were going to handle it.

His mom was all about spending all the time she could with Allison and it made it easier on Bella to work at the local YMCA where she had found a job teaching swimming lessons. She had worked up until two days before she went into labor with Benjamin and that delivery was an at-home water birth as well. He was Edward's little buddy since he'd come out of the womb. While Allison was definitely all about Bella, Benny would constantly want Edward...except when Bella was feeding him. Then, he stayed latched on and would usually fall right to sleep. Just like when she was feeding Allison a couple years ago, he loved to watch her perform that particular motherly duty.

Now, standing up in the water,her swollen belly poking out in front of her, Bella made her way over to the stairs as he wondered how it was going to go the third time around. Edward shifted his sleeping son so that he could stand up as soon as he saw Bella coming up the pool steps. Grabbing her purple towel, he carried it over to her. "I have to pee again. Can you watch Allison? I told her to stay on the steps until I come back."

"Of course."

"Hey, Benny," she cooed, kissing him on the head and then kissing Edward's cheek before walking past them.

Edward watched Bella waddle into the house before turning to check on Allison, who was now splashing water on Diesel as he fluttered past the steps. His family was his entire life and he wouldn't do anything to change that. He'd been promoted twice since taking the construction job back when they had first moved in to town but family always came first to him. While all three of his children, Allison, Benjamin, and the new baby-which they didn't know the sex of yet, had been pleasant surprises, they meant the world to him.

He could clearly remember the shock on Bella's face when she'd found out she was pregnant for a third time but the expression on Charlie's had been the most memorable. He was pretty sure that if Charlie was any lesser of a man, he would have asked Edward outright if they were ever going to slow down and give Bella some time to not be pregnant for once in their married life. Edward would be lying if he said he didn't feel slightly guilty about it and he understood Charlie's concerned reaction when they'd told him they would be having yet another child and would have three children under the age of three to care for.

He suspected Charlie was actually upset with him about it but seeing Bella cradling her infant son and singing to her one and a half year old daughter while Edward played guitar, reassured him that it wasn't something that his wife didn't want. So, when they took an ultrasound photo of the new baby over to show her parents, he'd pulled Charlie aside and tried to reassure him. Bella was Charlie's baby and it made sense that he'd be concerned with the quick pregnancies.

Benny was wide awake now and trying to stick his whole hand into his little mouth as Allison climbed out of the water and ran over to him. Alice would have been the best aunt any kid could ever ask for and while both the Cullen's and the Swan's were all looking at them like they were crazy, he knew Alice was up there looking down on them with a huge, knowing smile. She had always said, especially after the night she had picked his ass up from jail, that someday he'd find the perfect girl and have 'like a million babies'. While she was being dramatic, as his little sister often was, she knew him well even then. Hell, she knew him better than he knew himself.

Everyone was changing and even Rosalie and Emmett were living somewhere new. Edward had helped them get the accounting part straight as they opened up Twilight Rose, another night club. Rosalie and Bella were huge support systems for each other and his brother and Rosalie had made a few trips to Forks to visit with Edward, Bella, and their growing family. His parents visited nearly everyday and both sets of parents would be coming over for dinner later that night. Bella already had the lasagna made up and in the oven.

There would always be days when Edward would sit back and reminisce on his life when Bella had first met him. The passion he felt for Bella had completely changed him before he'd even realized he was in love with her. Before he was able to admit that to himself, he'd been full of anger, a casual smoker and an avid drinker. All he'd known in those first few, crazy nights, was that he was completely infatuated with his small, brown-eyed girl and that he would kill for her. Loving her, though, had been what saved him.

When the guys gave him a rough time about the fact that Bella was 'knocked up' for a third time, all he did was smile and shake his head in amusement. They hadn't known him before and it took everything for him not to tell them some stories about his past. He doubted any of them had lived the way he had, as if he could do anything; as if he was invincible. It had just taken one very broken girl, ushering two babies into this world, and creating another that would rely on him as well, to discover that he really was able to do just about anything. Alice may have left him to keep an eye on things from up above, but as long as he had Bella and his children beside him on Earth, he knew he could let himself be happy.

Bella laughed loudly behind him as Diesel ran over to her and shook the water off of his coat so that it soaked Bella and Allison both. Turning to face her, he smiled to himself. She was his greatest accomplishment, even more so than his children. Together, they had given life to these three children but they had also gotten Bella's life back for her. He was under no illusions that he'd done that on his own, though.

Bella had done just enough on her own to survive before and after he came along; he had just helped her to pick up the rest of the pieces. She had helped other survivors as well over the past couple of years and he loved that she was brave enough to do so on her own. He would never know the completely innocent girl that she had been before but the Bella he did know made his life worth living by wanting to live her own to the fullest.

Wow. It's over. Thankfully, I had power long enough to update this last chapter. Before I say anything further, I send out thoughts and prayers to those affected by this storm. Here in PA, we're getting slammed but I know it's nowhere near as bad as it is in neighboring states. I almost didn't post this, because it didn't feel right with everything going on, but I know I have readers in other states and countries who aren't being torn up by this crazy storm.

I truly hope you all enjoyed the story and will be putting up the new one very soon. I told you a little about it before but it involves a 'bad boy' Edward raising his little sister in the city. I hope you'll all tune in! Before I sign off on this story, though, I want to give a HUGE thank you to one reviewer who has inspired me, motivated me, and just simply made me laugh when I needed it (whether she realized it or not). Thank you, andreacf77, for your inspiring input..and that amazing pic that I love so much. I also need to send HUGE hugs to my beta for most of this story and hopefully all of my next one. It's been a ride, girlie, and I love you dearly! During this story, our little mascot was born, and so I'll always remember this story fondly. To all my readers out there, you are the reason I do this. It's not for the money or for all the time I spend on it. I write these stories for you! Please let me know what you all think! Signing off for now, Letzy xx