i own nothing, except a new kindle fire that i bought because i gave in to peer pressure. oh and a job. lol

April 4th

I ended up having a C-section. The doctor confirmed that I had preeclampsia and felt inducing would put too much stress on the baby. Edward stood by my side through it all, and although he tried to appear calm he worried his spacer so much his earlobe started to bleed.

The Cullens camped out in the waiting room; it was definitely a much happier camp out than the last one.

Nora Rose Cullen-Whitlock was born at 10:23am. She was perfect with blue-gray eyes and a little tuft of strawberry blond hair. Rosie told me her eyes might change color, but I hoped they didn't because they reminded me of Jasper.

From the moment she was officially introduced to everyone to when the hospital staff told everyone they had to leave, I didn't think Nora spent a second in the little hospital crib. She was passed around, person-to-person being cuddled, spoiled, and loved.

I broke down and sobbed very suddenly and very violently somewhere in the late afternoon; not caring everyone else in the room was happily chatting. Jasper wasn't there to see his daughter born. He wasn't going to see her take her first steps, talk, her first day of school, go on her first date, or get married.

"Bella." Edward passed Nora off to Esme and rushed to my side. "Shhh, baby. You're going to pop a stitch if you keep crying like that."

"J-J-Jasper . . ." I stuttered.

"I know." He gently kissed my forehead. "He can see her. I promise." Edward pushed down the sidebar on the bed and crawled in next to me. "Why don't you all take Nora around to the staff on this floor that hasn't seen her yet?" The family filed out, each touching me on the leg or foot in passing to give their support.

The skin around my incision was starting to pull, so I took several deep breathes to calm myself down. It sort of worked, the pain didn't lessen. Edward didn't speak, he just held me until the nurse came in with more pain meds.

When she saw my tear-stained face, she patted my on the shoulder. "Perfectly normal reaction after such an ordeal," she said softly. She must be new. She shot me up and went on her merry, oblivious way. I soon dozed off against Edward's chest.

When I woke up Edward was still next to me and all the Cullens were back in my room fawning over Nora. They didn't notice I was awake so I secretly watched them. They were amazing. They started out as my friends but now they were family, even though Jasper was gone, and even if I ever ended my relationship with Edward. They would be with me no matter what.

My little girl wasn't going to have her father but she was going to grow up with a family that loved her better than any other family could. I missed Jasper so much it felt like a stab in my chest but I couldn't lose it; I had someone else to think about now. So, I settled myself against the man who had patiently waited six years for me and would do what he could to be a father to Nora.

The nurse wheeled Nora in this morning and I laid there watching her sleep. She made the cutest little noises. I wanted to hold her but I wasn't supposed to pick her up, she had to be handed to me and I didn't want to disturb Edward. He was asleep on the fold out couch in my room. Esme bought him a change of clothes and last night he showered in my room while I fed Nora.

She was so beautiful, so tiny and pink. I wanted to hold her against me and breathe in her scent. Early in my pregnancy, when my mother still wanted me to go against all her Catholic beliefs and get rid of it, she told me having Jasper's child around would only be a painful reminder of what I had lost. But Nora was far from it. She was a reminder that Jasper and I had loved each other.

"Do you want to hold her?" Edward asked. I looked over and saw him getting up and stretching.

"You didn't have to stay the night. You could have gone home and slept in a bed."

"I wanted to." He walked to Nora and ever so gently picked her up and placed her in my arms. She gurgled and cooed as I held her. Edward dragged over a chair and used my table as his desk and he worked on his laptop while I cuddled my daughter. Every now and then, Edward would reach out and squeeze my fingers or kiss my hand, and I would run my fingers through his hair. It was so normal that it was easy to forget all the difficulties. It was easy to slip and imagine that Nora was Edward's child and he was my adoring husband and that we had never lost someone so important to us.

But I didn't want that. I wanted to remember Jasper and everything I had gone through. I wanted to remember that Edward and I put each other through hell for eight months. I wanted Nora to think of Edward as a dad but know Jasper was her father and that he would have loved her and watched over her.

The clueless, but very nice, nurse from the previous day came in again to take my vitals. "Such a cute family," she said as she wrapped the blood pressure cuff around my arm. She was pleasant enough, though I figured someone would have clued her in by that point. I decided not to be bothered by it, because we were a family, albeit an odd one.

"Thanks," I said with a smile.

thisclose to the end.

also, usually i try and have a chapter of First to go along with a chapter of Jasper's Girl but one wasn't ready in time. so i'll give you two chapters of First next time. =)

thanks to everyone that reads and reviews and pays the slightest bit of attention to this story. i appreciate it muchly.

much love to larin20 who betas this mess.

also, if you frequent ADifferentForest, i'm planning on doing a watch-a-long of all the Twilight Saga movies, starting next Sunday. i'd love for you to join!

don't forget to please give my book blog a little love. i've got some pretty good books on there!