AN: Epic fail on the updating of late! I found this one incredibly difficult to write. So, thanks so much for those who have been patient and for sending nice messages of encouragement! As well as for all of the reviews. You guys rock.

Thanks as always to my lovely (not to mention patient), pre readers beachcomberlc and astonmartin823.

Chapter 81

My eyes fluttered open, awakened by the bright light coming from the floor to ceiling windows of Edward's bedroom. The sheer curtains covering the windows did little to block the light from the early morning sun. This was it, the morning I had been awaiting for so many years but never thought would actually come, and now that it was here, the nerves were making me feel sick to the core. I was nervous for my little girl, nervous about what might be revealed about how Edward and I really met, scared of how people would react to my keeping his daughter away from him and what implications all of that would have on my daily life; our daily life. But I was comforted by the arm that was wrapped around my middle, the body cocooned around mine, keeping me safe, giving me shelter, warmth and so much love and affection. It would all be worth it.

Edward shifted behind me, his arm tightening, his legs finding their way between mine and bringing our bodies impossibly closer. "Morning, my love." His voice was thick from sleep, his stubbled chin rubbing lightly on my shoulder as he snuggled our bodies together.

I murmured my greeting in reply.

"Did you sleep well?" He asked as his lips rubbed across my bare shoulder.

"Not really, no." I replied.

"Was something keeping you awake?" I could feel his lips turn up, his voice turn cheeky.

"Hmmm, not something, someone was rather rudely keeping me awake."

"I didn't hear you complaining at the time," he replied, nipping my shoulder playfully. "I hadn't seen your beautiful face or stunning body in two weeks. I needed my fill."

I released a not particularly lady-like snort. "Well, you did that."

"Yes, I most certainly did." We were quiet for several long minutes; I'm pretty sure he could sense my current mood. "Are you nervous, sweetheart?"

I turned in his arms to face him. "Yeah. I'm scared shitless of what's to come. I mean, last night was insane. How much worse is it going to get when they find out about Heidi? That is, if they haven't already figured it out."

Edward swept the hair from my face, his palm coming to rest gently on my sleep creased cheek.

"I love you so fucking much, Bella Swan. We're going to do this together; you and me and Heidi. Not to mention the backing of my family. I don't care what they say about us. Always know that okay?"

"Okay," I replied, my voice not sounding at all certain.

"You're beautiful, you know that? You make my world a lighter place, less heavy and burdened, yet somehow more connected. You make me want to be involved, continue to try to make the world a better place. You make me feel a happiness I haven't felt in an incredibly long time. Does that make sense?"

"I think so."

"Can I ask you a hypothetical question?"


"What do you think would have happened with us if you didn't get pregnant?"

I had definitely thought of this exact scenario. Not because I regretted Heidi, just because it was the natural thing to do. "In all honesty, I think we would have gone on as we were for a period of time; maybe a year or two. Maybe more. Maybe less. But to be honest I don't think we would have made it to the end of your term."

"You seriously don't think we would have made it?"

"Not in the short term. But now, knowing how good this is," I said, motioning between the two of us, "I have no doubt we would have made our way back to each other."

Edward's face softened, his eyes holding a world of happiness and love.

"My turn for the hypothetical question. What would you have done if you'd known I was pregnant back then?"

Edward released a loud breath, my question a far more complex emotional issue than his.

"Knowing what I know now, I would have openly accepted you into my life. Both of you. I'd like to think there wouldn't have been any hiding and I would have dealt with the consequences, no matter what they were.

"But hindsight is a wonderful thing, and I can't say that that's what I would have actually done at the time. Who knows what my feelings would have been towards an unborn child? I'd like to think I would have felt no resentment had I lost everything as a result, but I don't know that for sure. I don't know…"

I could hear soft voices in the hallway, and a light tap on the door, swiftly ending our conversation.

"Come in."

Heidi peeked her head in through the door, obviously encouraged by Esme, who disappeared.

"Daddy, you're back!" she exclaimed, as she ran to the bed. He sat up, his arms outstretched as she ran towards him, jumping on the bed and into his arms.

"Hello, munchkin. I missed you," he said as he wrapped her up and breathed her in.

After greeting our daughter good morning, and bidding her farewell for the day and telling her to be good for Nana Esme, I left the bed to go and shower and get ready for the day. I spent an unnecessarily long amount of time in the shower cleaning myself and getting dressed – procrastinating, wanting our private bubble to remain intact for just a little while longer.

But I couldn't hide forever from what the media was already likely saying about us, even at such an early hour. Thinking about it, I figured that the morning shows and early morning news programs were probably already all over the latest development in Edward's love life. Despite the fact that the east coast was well and truly on its way to sleep by the time Edward dramatically swept into the gallery last night, kissed me passionately and then whisked me away, the west coast was still well and truly awake, meaning there was plenty of time for America to already be all over this story.

I walked downstairs and was surprised to see Edward looking so relaxed. His feet were propped up on the coffee table, one leg crossed over the other, the New York Times held up in front of him, the broadsheet covering the vast majority of his upper body as he held it out wide. On the cover? One of what was probably many photos of Edward and I kissing. The headline?

Cullen's Latest Girl

The photo was actually fairly flattering – intimate, but at least flattering. And though I didn't particularly love the implications of the headline, it seemed tame enough, but it was the Times, I could only imagine what the tabloids had splashed across them.

"Do I want to know?" I asked as I picked up a slice of toast from a plate on the table and took a bite. Edward's hand pulled the page back revealing his face, which didn't look too disgruntled, yet.

"So far so good. These guys wouldn't have had time to get anything too juicy in here before going to print."

"Have you seen the morning shows yet?" I asked, my eyes flicking to the television over in the living room that was showing ads.

"Yeah. It's rather entertaining so far," he chuckled. I was glad he was finding this funny. I was currently shitting bricks.

"Entertaining good or entertaining bad?"

"Kind of amusing, actually."

I went and sat on the sofa in front of the television as Edward joined me, remote already in hand.

"Hang on a sec, I got this grab off the Today show before." He pulled up the menu and hit play. Matt and Savannah sitting on set, going straight into listening to a sound bite by the sound of things.

"We have a recording from West Coast radio station KISW, recorded last night from a woman who claims she was present when the former President and Isabella met."

The screen changed to a picture of the two of us, this time our lips weren't locked, but Edward was staring pretty intently into my eyes, as a voice I recognized was played.

"I was there when they met. I can't believe it. You could see there was a connection or something. I didn't hear what they were saying, but he totally seemed into her. I mean, she's just a mom you know, like any of us. It kinda gives you hope." The unmistakable nasally voice of Jessica Stanley became silent as the Seattle radio announcer began to question her, probably thinking he had the scoop of the century. Oh, how wrong they were.

"So Isabella has a daughter?" He asked, I could already hear the jackpot barrels whirling in his brain at this piece of information.

"Oh yeah, Heidi. She's in the same class as my son, Mikey. They're really good friends." What crap.

"And the father?"

"Oh, I don't know…um…I've never seen a father."

The audio was cut off as the screen flicked back to the hosts who were obviously trying to piece together a story. Something they were probably going to be doing until Edward's press conference in a couple of hours' time.

"So, what else do we know about Isabella?" Savannah asked Matt.

"Not a lot at this stage. But we also have a few words from the owner of the gallery from last night shortly after the couple made their quick getaway."

Harry Clearwater's excited face was splashed up on screen as a reporter asked him to tell us what heknew.

"I couldn't be more thrilled for them. I've known them both for some time now. She's a wonderful artist. Such a lovely girl, talented, generous, spirited."

"Did you know of their relationship before tonight?"

"Oh, no. No. That's the first I saw."

"Did you know President Cullen would be at the gallery last night?"

"No, not at all. I was as shocked as everyone else in the room. It was quite an honor. And what a night! We raised almost fifty thousand dollars for The Children's Housing Fund. Such a success."

The man had class; that was for sure. He didn't mention a thing about Edward buying my paintings over the years, presuming he knew, and did what he could to bring attention to the fund. He also mentioned my involvement with various charities over the years through my association with his gallery, with several of my artworks shown.

As each half hour ticked by, each news bulletin seemed to pick up slightly more information, just a little more detail on who I was. There were questions about my daughter, but still no photos as of yet. I was pretty sure it wouldn't take long, but by then, hopefully Edward will have had a chance to divulge the truth about her before it got out on its own.

At precisely nine a.m., there was a knock on the front door. I hadn't been aware that anyone was coming; Edward hadn't said anything, but given the way he dashed down the stairs wearing only a towel, he didn't seem at all surprised. I guess I was just focused on the television. Edward opened the door for the guests, and I was surprised to hear several different voices.

Thompson was among the group, as was the mousy blonde assistant I remembered seeing at Heidi's school, and another woman who looked vaguely familiar.

Thompson came over and shook my hand efficiently, before turning and introducing me to the two women, none of them seeming fazed by Edward's attire, or lack thereof.

"Miss Swan, this is Jane Volturi, Edward's personal assistant, and Diana Ortega. Diana is part of my team, she's President Cullen's Communications and Public Relations Manager."

"It's a pleasure to meet you, Miss Swan." Diana's voice was smooth and soothing as she proffered her hand in my direction. I took her hand, and she shook it – very business-like.

"Likewise, Diana. Please call me Bella" I replied, before turning to Jane and offering my hand. "Jane," I nodded my head in her direction. I wasn't quite sure what to make of either of them yet, but I could feel I was being appraised from head to toe. All of a sudden every move I made felt important.

The three of them started going about their business like it was the most natural thing in the world. They were obviously a very well-oiled team, with Jane filling Edward in on his schedule, when the car would be arriving, who would be meeting him at the hotel where the press conference would be held, and directing him on what he should wear. She even had two different ties in her hand.

Diana reminded him of what reporters would be at the press conference, the types of media outlets he could now expect given what had happened last night, specifically who he should take questions from and who he should avoid like the plague.

All the while, Edward's eyes occasionally flicked expectantly to Thompson, who remained decidedly quiet throughout. Something told me Edward was waiting to be censured for his unplanned arrival at the gallery the night before, however Thompson remained closed lipped.

Edward eventually walked back upstairs to get dressed, thank God, because he was still only wearing a towel, and despite the company and our reunion last night I was finding it hard to concentrate. As he reached the top of the stairs he called for me to come and help him.

"Which suit and tie?" He asked as I entered the dressing room.

I simply raised my eyebrows in question. Wasn't this what Jane was trying to help him with before? Surely she was better placed for this, or maybe this was the role the first lady would have played? Was it my turn to step up and do what she would have done, despite the fact that he was no longer President? I cleared my throat nervously, considering the options.

"The navy suit," I said, without too much hesitation. "With the green tie."

Edward simply nodded his head, as if trusting my choice, before getting dressed.

He slipped the tie under the collar of his shirt and I watched as his fingers deftly looped and pulled with speed and efficiency to produce a perfect knot. He checked the length and then straightened it all up. Holy hell, he looked so fucking sexy in a suit like this. I was salivating at the sight, drool practically dribbling from my chin as I took him in. He looked so very Presidential again all of a sudden.

"Something got you turned on over there, Miss Swan?"

I snapped my mouth shut quickly. "You just…you know…you look…". I shivered at the thought of the last time I took a tie off him. He smiled slightly and walked towards me, his forehead gently pressed to mine.

"You got this, then?" I asked.

"Yeah, I got this," he replied, before his lips met mine briefly. "I love you."

"I love you too. Good luck," I said before he walked downstairs and all four of them left the condo for the press conference.

I settled in front of the television, my stomach growing more and more nervous as 10 o'clock neared. Rose, who had arrived for moral support just as Edward left, settled in next to me, her hand covering her baby bump, a bar of half eaten Hershey's in her hand.

The reporter on the screen was going on about the scene from the gallery last night, speculating on what it meant. Could Edward Cullen, the former President of the United States, widower, and heartthrob, possibly have found true love? She raised questions about what had really happened to Kate Denali. Was Chelsea Simmons now out of the picture, or had she had her heart broken by Cullen? From the inside, I could see the reporter was just grasping at straws, but from the outside I'm sure everyone was believing every ridiculous word she said, and coming up with their own answers to the ridiculous questions she was posing to her audience.

With twits like this on TV you could see why celebrities hated the media so much.

The report flicked over to the press conference and they showed a picture of a relaxed-looking Edward standing in front of a lectern in a plush-looking hotel. I stood, my body now on high alert; a stark contrast to Edward who looked completely composed.

All of a sudden, Edward looked up to the crowd in front of him, his body straightening. It was a very obvious cue that he was ready to speak and you could tell the crowd of reporters responded immediately by the sudden silence. He had such a powerful presence about him in this type of situation, and it took so little to gain the room's attention.

"Thank you for joining me today. Although, I'm sure after last night there are a few more of you in attendance than originally planned."

Edward seemed to lift his head to some rabble-rousers at the back; presumably the entertainment reporters who wouldn't normally attend what would usually be a political press conference. As the camera stayed on him we could hear shouting, but he raised his hands slightly to placate them, silence descending on the room once more.

"I have two announcements I'd like to make this morning, although one is no longer an surprise." He chuckled to himself briefly before continuing. "Isabella Swan and I met during my first term as President." Edward paused briefly, his statement clearly contradicting Jessica Stanley's diatribe that was recorded on the radio last night and on constant loop on the morning shows, swiftly discrediting her. The crowd of reporters remained silent as if waiting for him to continue, it was like they weren't quite ready for him to jump straight into the gritty stuff. "We were introduced by my sister-in-law, Rosalie, who went to University with Isabella. We fell in love. While our time together was brief, it had a profound effect on both of us.

"As you can imagine, a public relationship with the President of the United States is full of immense pressures, and so Isabella made the decision to end our time together – leaving Chicago and returning to the home town where she grew up."

"So you're saying you haven't only just met?" Someone interjected with a particularly stupid question. What was wrong with reporters these days, hadn't he just confirmed we met years ago?

Edward didn't seem fazed that he needed to repeat himself. "That's correct. I've known Isabella for several years."

"Several months after returning to her home town, Isabella gave birth to a baby girl." The grin on Edward's face was huge as the crowd of reporters immediately went into a complete frenzy at the obvious implications of his comment.

Raising his hands and nodding his head, Edward continued. "Yes, I recently found out that I am the very proud father of a beautiful six year old girl named Heidi." He looked up to the camera, his face just a little smug, full of pride and joy as he listened to the questions being shouted as he allowed the media to digest his statement.

In the background, you could hear the cacophony of questions as they were shouted at him, each wanting to be heard.

"Why did she take her from you?"

"Were you angry when you found out?"

"Are you sure the baby's yours?"

"How do we know you weren't just hiding her?"

"Is this why you broke up with Kate Denali?"

"What's been the response from your family?"

"When do we get to meet them?"

Edward raised his hands to quiet the crowd.

"I'll get to some of your questions but let me say this – I'm still very much in love with Isabella Swan. She's the mother of my child and the woman who I intend to spend the rest of my life with, if she'll have me, of course."

"Why did she leave?" One plucky reporter shouted quickly, and I stiffened as the focus was turned to me. Edward allowed the question and responded.

"Being in a relationship with the President of the United States was not an easy situation to be in. I was a pretty unreliable sort of boyfriend. I was never around, I was impossible to contact, I was terrible at returning phone calls. Hell, I didn't even have a cell." The crowd laughed at Edward's statement. "It's not like Isabella could just drop in and say "Hi", least of all because we lived in different states. It's not like I could take her out on dates, dinner, the movies – you guys would have made that impossible. I didn't really make great relationship material back then.

"Those shortcomings aside, during our time together I had also made it abundantly clear to Isabella, through various discussions, that to achieve everything I wanted to achieve for this great country I needed to win a second term. Isabella felt it would be unlikely that could happen when the public found out that she was pregnant and we weren't married. She was scared, I wasn't there for her, and so she sacrificed everything in her life for me and my career." His face turned solemn at his last statement, as if reiterating the seriousness of our situation, and that the decision was not taken lightly. Well, that's the way I was seeing it anyway, I wasn't sure how the public would read it. "She gave up all of her friends in the city where she lived, a career, her entire life, so I could remain in office because of what would have seemed like a scandal to many."

"Mr. President, how did you find out about your daughter?"

"Isabella and I ran into each other completely by accident. I was recently at Heidi's school to judge an environmental science project. Isabella hadn't realized I was going to be there judging our daughter's project, which, coincidentally, won first prize." He said proudly.

"Were you angry with her when you first found out?"

"Of course, yes," he replied honestly. "I was angry with Isabella, and I was also angry with myself. I was angry that I missed out on the first six years of Heidi's life. That was until it became abundantly clear that Isabella made the decision to leave to protect me and that she always intended on telling me about Heidi. She knew how passionate I was about winning a second term in office, and she thought that was unlikely to happen as a result of her pregnancy when we weren't married. She gave up her entire life at the time to raise our daughter by herself so I could remain President." He responded, reiterating his previous point and pulling the spotlight away from me and onto himself.

"Did she ever consider abortion?" Christ, was it going to get this personal? I guess so.

"We've never discussed it."

"Would you have supported her if she did?" This reporter had balls.

"You know I support a woman's right to choose. But in this case it's a moot point," Edward replied a little dismissively, before pointing in the direction of another reporter.

"How do we know you weren't just hiding them so you'd win your second term?"

Edward remained silent, his eyes still, presumably never leaving the face of the reporter who stooped to ask such a callous question. "I've achieved a lot in my life," he began slowly. "And I've lost a lot, more than you can possibly imagine. Having a family," Edward looked down before quickly touching his ear. I wondered if he meant anything by it. "Well, it's what's been missing, I guess. I'm…I'm beyond delighted to have Isabella and Heidi in my life. Hiding the truth from you for the last month or so since I found out about Heidi and reconnected with Isabella has been incredibly difficult, for numerous reasons, least of all is the fact that I quite literally want to shout about them from the rooftops. So, to answer your question, there's no way I could have hidden it. I couldn't be more proud to be a father, and I couldn't be more in love with Isabella. Having someone to share everything with…well that's the icing on the cake isn't it? If I could have had that back then, I would have." I thought back to our discussion in bed this morning, when I asked him if he would have given it all up for us if necessary. I guess that was my answer.

"Awwww." I'd almost forgotten Rosalie was in the room with me. I turned to see her shoving the last of the chocolate bar into her mouth, her face a veil of innocence.

Edward's comments blew me away. He came across with so much honesty and sincerity, yet so much excitement at what life had just thrown at him. He was radiating happiness; it was plain for anyone to see that he was excited about being a father.

"So, you resent the decision she made?" someone off camera asked.

"We've covered this, George."

"But she took your daughter away from you," he asked, his voice unable to hide the incredulity.

"She did." Edward replied matter-of-factly, leaving no room to believe that this was a sore point for him any longer. "And she did it because she genuinely believed she was doing the right thing, in circumstances that were impossible. But I'm the only one who has to deal with that, and I've forgiven her just as she's forgiven me."

"Have you spoken with the President since finding out about Heidi?"

Edward nodded to the reporter who asked the question. "Yes, I've spoken with President O'Hara."

"And did you discuss your daughter?"

"Yes as a matter of fact we did. As you're well aware, President O'Hara is passionate about family. She has several children of her own as well as grandchildren. As you can imagine, she had a lot of advice to offer me." Once again the crowd laughed at his statement.

"Did she express her concerns on the impact this revelation will have on her popularity and effectiveness."

"She discussed no such concerns with me. I expect we'll hear during her next press briefing if any such concerns exist. Phil?"

"When can we meet them?"

"I think we met Isabella last night!" Someone called out. Edward laughed, his stance relaxing again just a little, though I could tell his guard had gone up a little at the thought of the press getting anywhere near Heidi and me.

"Isabella and Heidi won't be leading a public life. But I'm sure you'll chase them down soon enough."

Edward then proceeded to make his second announcement, which was that he was resigning from his position on the UN Security Council and would be leaving New York, and though he didn't announce where he would be moving, you didn't have to be a genius to figure it out.

As the press conference wound down and the hosts in the studio took over they were going ballistic with the news of Edward Cullen's "love child". They were shocked, appalled, delighted and more as they discussed the possibility that he never knew about her, should I feel ashamed of myself for leaving, speculation on whether he would have won had the public found out at the time. The reports were very clearly being rushed together based on the questions and opinions people were throwing around, with very little thought of the answer. As the Today show wound down an hour later, they'd already shown the pictures of the three of us on the beach, as yet they were the only pictures of Heidi in circulation. The general consensus was that we made a beautiful family. And they were right, the pictures were stunning and showed that Edward very clearly adored both me and his daughter.

The comments coming into the studio from Twitter were such a mixed bag, some were outrageously upset about the fact that I'd taken Heidi away from her father; some were supportive. And then there were those who were just upset that Edward was so obviously off the market. Chelsea Simmons was immediately forgotten as the scandal unfolded.

Suddenly the television screen went blank. I swiveled my head quickly to look at Rosalie, her hand was outstretched, pointing the remote towards the television.

"You can't watch this shit all day Bella. It will drive you freaking mad. People are going to love you and hate you. There's absolutely nothing you can do about any of it. All you can do is protect Heidi and live your life the way you want to. Damn what the public thinks."

I thought about her comments for a few moments, wondering how easy I would find it. "You're right. I guess. But saying it out loud and actually doing it are two very different things."

"Best thing you can do is to ignore it. Which is easier said than done sometimes, but what choice do you have?"

Rosalie made a very good point. There was nothing I could do about any of it, but just move on and deal with scandals if and when they arose. I led the life of a saint for the last seven years in the hopes that nothing would ever come out in the public eye that would cause pain for my daughter or for Edward. Hopefully there was enough distance between now and the time in my life when men had paid me for sex.

I could never regret that part of my life. Without it I wouldn't have Edward and I wouldn't have our daughter. Being the partner of the former President of the United States of America wasn't going to be easy, regardless, but I would rather live my life with him, knowing that at any moment my previous profession could be revealed, than live without him and deny him of possibly his greatest achievement yet: fatherhood.

I would always be looking over my shoulder, wondering if and when my past…our past would be revealed. I had to remember it wasn't just about me, after all, Edward had paid me for sex. If and when it came out, I had to trust that he would be by my side, with as much to lose – if not more – than I did. Until that time we'd move forward, living our life together, watching Heidi grow with two parents and an extended family who loved her more than life itself.

I heard Edward come bursting through the front door. He made his way through the condo to the living room, the look on his face triumphant as he crossed the room to me, his hands cupping my face as his lips kissed mine briefly.

"Hi," he breathed.

"Hi," I replied. "You look…excited."

"I am. Christ, I'm so glad that's over with. It was insane. I've never been more nervous or on edge or excited about a press conference in my life."

"You looked completely relaxed."

"That's what Diana said."

"I guess that's why you were such a successful president for eight years."

"Hmmm, I guess so." Edward's lips moved slowly over mine, his hands moving to my hips bringing my body closer to his as he groaned.

"Um….I'm still here." Edward and I both turned quickly at the sound of Rose's voice. She was still sitting on the sofa with her feet propped up on the coffee table, another chocolate bar in hand.

Edward quickly pulled away from me, walked towards Rose and held his hands out to her – a gesture clearly meant to indicate he wanted to assist her up from the sofa. "Well, thanks for keeping Bella company, Rose. We'll be seeing you soon."

I've never seen Rosalie look so lost for words as she slowly rose to her feet. Edward had her handbag in his hands as he unceremoniously kicked her out.

I simply stared at him, a little shocked as he returned to my side. "Now, where were we?" He asked, his eyes focused intently on mine.

"You just kicked her out?" I asked, still a little shell-shocked at the abruptness of his actions.

"I did," he replied dismissively as his arms snaked their way around my back.

"But why?"

"You do realize this is the first opportunity we've had to be entirely alone, without threat of interruption since we got back together?" He pulled his iPhone from his pocket, switched it off and threw it on the sofa before returning his attention to me.

"I guess."

"Yes. And I have plans for you, which include fucking you on every surface of this condo, excluding of course, our daughter's bedroom."

Now he had my full attention. "Oh you do, do you?"

"Yes," he replied, lifting my t-shirt over my head, not giving me any choice in the matter as he looked down and cupped my bra-covered breasts in his hands.

"Starting with the dining room table," he growled as he walked me backwards in the direction of said table.

I glanced over my shoulder at it. "Do you think it's big enough?" I asked sarcastically; the table would seat about ten people up each side with ease.

Edward roughly pulled away one of the chairs and pushed me back towards the table, my bottom hitting the silky smooth wood as his hands immediately moved to my belt and the button on my jeans. "I think we'll have more than enough room for what I have planned for you this time around."

"This time around?" I squeaked, as he yanked my jeans and underpants from my legs, leaving me completely bare for him.

"Oh yes, Isabella, I've imagined you at this dining room table on more than one occasion and in more than one position." His lips met my right breast as I felt him fumbling with the belt and button of his suit pants.

I heard his pants hit the floor as he stood to his full height, his eyes sparkling as he grinned down at me, his hard cock firmly in his hand as I lay there completely helpless and ridiculously turned on.

"Are you ready for me Miss Swan?"

"Always, Mr. President."

AN: This is the last chapter in this story, save for an outtake which will be from a very interesting perspective, set about a week after the press conference. And of course the obligatory epilogue which will be set about a year from now.

I know many of you probably feel like there's so much that can be covered, but for me this story was only ever about Edward's public acknowledgement of their relationship, not about the public's reaction. Because as Rosalie so rightly pointed out – everyone will have a different opinion. Though the next two chapters will give you you what you want, so don't worry about that! I've never been very good at finishing things, hence the reason this chapter took so long…putting a stamp on something to say it's finished is a very daunting task for me. Hopefully now that this chapter is out of the way I'll be a bit more relaxed about the next two chapters. And while I know this one wasn't as good as I would have liked, if I'd spent any more time on it you would have been waiting another 3 months! (and I was already coping enough shit from anonymous reviewers for waiting so long).

Fic Rec: Fortune Favors the Bold – by capricapra Inspired by Jane Austen's Persuasion. At 18, Bella's respected family prevent her from running away with poor orphan Edward. Years later and their fortunes have reversed. Edward is a rich music producer. Bella is an impovershed writer living with her sister, a single mother. But Edward and Bella's paths are about to cross again... I Can't tell you how much I love this story. It's a reunion story – which are always my favourite kind. I didn't love the first chapter or so that much (that's just me), but once the story gets moving it's full of great side stories that all seem to relate beautifully to Edward and Bella coming together. Great read, good angst, she sets a good pace and it's going to be amazing when complete! (tell her I sent you!)