The story 'Hide and Seek' was meant to be a one-shot originally; but I continued it. Don't know if I'll write any more though…anyways, please review and let me know how bad I am. Constructive criticism are very much welcomed, compliments even more so!
The warm water felt incredibly good as it cascaded over my naked body. I sighed in contentment. As much as it had been entertaining to play in the water with all the Cullens, the lake water had been cold to the very extreme.
Smiling slightly, I wondered if Jasper, Rosalie, Alice and Emmett would still be continuing the water fight. The freezing temperature had no purchase over their stone bodies; if anything, they would only lower the temperature even more.
I sighed again. It was time to get out of the warm, comforting mist of the shower. The vapours that were rapidly evaporating covered my entire physique; it reminded me of the thick blanket I would hide under in the dark when I was still a child, afraid of the monsters under the bed. I almost laughed. How my life had changed; but I wouldn't have it any other way.
I took the clothes that Esme had ever so kindly laid out for me. A slight smile graced my lips as I thought of the woman who was in all purposes, my mother. So gentle and motherly, I always felt at ease in her presence. It was a familiarity I had never before experienced with Renee.
When I opened the door, I could hear voices downstairs. I smiled wider when I recognised Emmett's deep boom and Alice's musical tinkling. Towelling off as much water from myself as was humanely possible-I knew that water tended to strengthen my scent-I ran down the hazardous stairs to join my vampires.
Or I should say tried to. I blushed fiercely when I recognised the owner of the granite arms currently holding my body upright. Looking up, I saw Carlisle's amused face.
"You must be more careful, Bella. I think you already have enough trouble without having a concussion and a broken arm, no?" He teased. I only blushed harder and mumbled an apology.
"It's no problem. But go down quickly, I think Edward is waiting for you," He winked and disappeared.
Grinning, I bounded down the remaining stairs into the arms of my lover. His expressing matched my own; and as we locked eyes I melted in his perfection. He was literally the pure embodiment of a Greek god.
Our magical moment was interrupted quite rudely when Alice gagged in a completely unladylike fashion.
"God, you two. Sometimes I wonder if you two aren't worse than Emmett and Rosalie with all the public displays of affecttion," Alice shook her tiny head in mock pity.
"Get in there, Edward!" Emmett whooped, to which Rosalie responded with a smack on his head. He sheepishly rubbed his head. I giggled even through my blush; to see such a huge and powerful person quietened so easily by a girl was amusing. Not that Rosalie was any other girl. The opposite; she was a powerful vampire who had a strong personality. I had no doubt that she could make Emmett do whatever she wanted.
"Come on, you two. Aren't you going to play?" Alice hurried us. I just looked back at her, confused.
"Play what?" I asked. Edward answered.
"Apparently we have to play the card game 'cheat'. It's not optional; Alice will have our heads if we don't play." He said wryly. I noted the resigned tone in his musical voice.
I frowned. "But…isn't the point of the game mute with Jasper playing?"
"That's why he's not playing," He told me with a butterfly kiss on the forehead. Holding my hand, he led us to the circle on the Cullens' living room floor. The name was quite ironic.
Jasper was dividing the cards up into four perfectly spaced piles with warp speed. I sighed; I was bound to be horrible at this game. I could never keep my emotions from my face; Renee often teased me about being an open book. I also knew that there was no point resisting. Nothing would stop Alice. Jasper cast me an amused look when he sensed my emotions, probably guessing the reason behind it as well.
"Okay, here are the rules. Jasper and Edward obviously doesn't get to play, and the joker can be any number you choose. You have to put down a card with a number equal to, one higher or one lower than the previous card." Turning unexpectedly toward me, she flashed her glistening white teeth. "Don't worry Bella, you'll do fine," she reassured. Although I knew not to doubt Alice, I wasn't so sure when I saw Emmett's evil smirk directed at me.
"Who had the diamond three?" Edward asked. I slapped his arm. He was constantly trying to peek at my cards.
"Why aren't you letting me look at your cards, Bella? I'm not even playing," He complained. I grinned at him.
"Because you might tell the others. I already have an enough disadvantage with you people being what you are and I being what I am," I sniffed.
Edward look horrified at my accusation. However, I knew him well enough to see the mirth dancing behind the façade. "How could you think so lowly of me? I swear I'll do no such thing," He swore solemnly, theatrically placing his pale hand on his unbeating heart. I giggled and playfully shoved him, although I didn't stop him when he tried to look at my cards this time. His curiousity with anything to do with me was incomprehensible to my 'fickle human mind'.
The game started with a flourish. Rosalie put down the diamond three, promptly followed with Alice's two fours. They had already perfected a poker face; their beautiful faces betraying nothing in their neutrality. I looked at my cards carefully, and trying very hard to put my emotions on a tight leash put down a five.
Edward coughed and laughed in the most unreal way. Emmett lightened up and immediately yelled, "Cheat!"
This was unbelievable. I turned on my previously adored lover.
"Edward! You promised to not cheat!" I knew vaguely that I sounded like a five year old, but I couldn't care less. My anger only grew when I saw that he still wore the sly grin, and even more when Rosalie pushed the four cards toward me with a smirk.
"I kept my promise. I swore to not tell the others what your cards were!" He defended. I sighed and took the cards, resigned.
Emmett carefully put down three sixes. The cards looked ridiculous, held in his massive hands.
Rosalie put down a seven, to which Alice immediately yelled 'cheat!'. She swore colourfully and took the cards. Alice put down two aces.
Damn. I was going to have to cheat again.
"One King," I declared confidently. Edward snorted.
"Cheat!" Alice accused, grinning. Oh, lord. Was he really going to do this for the whole game?
Another round passed, and it was my turn again. My bad luck never failed my expectations; I once again had no cards that matched the present conditions.
"Two queens," I said, hoping beyond all odds that Edward wouldn't tip them off this time. I had more cards that what Alice, Emmett and Rosalie had combined.
And again, Edward laughed.
I shrieked and threw my cards at his face. "You are so annoying!" Scowling, I told him. I wasn't sure if he heard; he was still laughing, now clutching his sides, shaking on the floor.
"Actually, Bella, even if he didn't cheat we would have still known. You really can't keep a poker face." Jasper remarked. Although I knew it was true, I still glowered at him. He returned the gaze with mirth.
"I'm not playing anymore. It's not fair," I pouted. Edward immediately took me in his arms and attempted to take flight, stopped only by Alice's tiny hands.
"Edward, stop cheating. You're ruining the game!"
"As if you weren't cheating the whole time. Don't think I didn't notice Jasper tip you off whenever Rosalie or Emmett cheated," Edward retorted. Jasper looked sheepish though Alice only smirked.
Rosalie was outraged.
Seeing the four sufficiently distracted, Edward scooped me up and took us up to his room. I rolled happily on his amazingly soft and comfortable bed. Edward laughed at the sight.
I kissed his cheek when he lay down next to me.
"So I take it that I'm forgiven?"
"Of course not. I'm still mad at you for making me lose," I told him off. He only smirked.
"I was only trying to get us away from Alice, love." When I didn't look convinced, he continued. "Really. I guessed that if I ruined the game by making you lose, we would be free. Of course I couldn't do it to Rosalie, Emmett or Alice; if I had, I wouldn't have all four of my limbs right now," He chuckled.
"Fine," I cut him off. "You're forgiven," he was forgiven long before either of us knew it.
"Thank you, my love," He attempted a bow lying down. I laughed at the sight.
"I never thought I would see the day where Edward Cullen is ungraceful," I teased.
He only nuzzled my neck. I wound my arms about his head and slowly pulled my fingers through. Edward held me tighter. We lay in quiet comfort, enjoying the serenity of the moment.
We came to a state almost dreamlike. With almost closed eyes, I breathed in the fragrance that was him. The bed, his hair, the blanket…everything smelled of him. I loved it.
The spell was broken when I noticed my beloved Wuthering Heights on his polished desk. I knew instantly that it was mine; no other copy could be so worn and battered. Curious, I tried to get up; what was it doing here?
Edward looked up and tightened his grip as I tried to move away. With his half-lidded eyes, very much topaz due to his recent hunting, the soft purr rolling out from his belly and the lazy look, he looked like…a lion. It was surprisingly adorable. I mussed his hair.
His eyes widened at the motion. It was one that he bestowed on me often, although never done to him. I grinned and did it again.
"My little lion," I murmured, giggling. He raised one of his thick eyebrows and growled playfully, licking my cheek. I stilled from shock.
Edward had never done anything like that before. It was very pleasurable; I loved it. I vaguely wondered if he would feel the same way-
I had my answer when he moaned and buried his head to my chest. I grinned.
"Why did you try to get up, darling?" He muttered into me.
"Why do you have my book? I know I never brought it here before,"
"What book?" raising his head lazily, he caught sight of the battered copy.
"Oh, that." He muttered as he lowered his head again.
"I simply wished to know what it was that drew you in so much. I stopped halfway through-it was horrible. What do you like about that hideous story?"
I bristled at hearing my favourite classic being called hideous. "It's a great book," I defended.
"It-" My irritation human needs interrupted, once again. A huge yawn ripped its way out of my mouth. Edward immediately tucked the blankets in tighter around us.
"Sleep, my love. We can argue tomorrow," I could hear the smile in his voice, although I couldn't see. He had already turned the lights off and all windows were covered.
I drifted off happily, hearing my angel hum my beautiful lullaby.