A/N: Are you as surprised as I am? I am shocked! Inspiration struck and I managed to find time to write... a lot... :D Thanks everyone for the birthday wishes and all the get wells- We are amazingly enough all on the way to healthy.
Big hugs to my betas Prettyflour and Ninmesarra- They spank the grammar straight every time. Any remaining mistakes are my own of course. I can never leave it alone after they look at it. Pretty also came up with the name for the chapter. Thank ya much! It's perfect!
To all the new readers/followers/favorite adders/reviewers- Welcome to the Countdown! I appreciate each and every one of you!
I disclaim... Unfortunately I can't claim any characters as my own. They all belong to Stephenie Meyer.
Parking his car beside my own, I tried to wake the sleeping man in the passenger seat. "Eddie? Eddie, wake up. We're here," I said with a poke and a shake to his shoulder. "Come on, Eddie. Help me get you inside."
One large hand came up to scrub down his face, "I'm up. Let's go." The passenger door was flung wide, and two long legs twisted out of the car. I scrambled out of my seat and around to his side, grasping his hands and helping to pull him to stand. "Bella?"
"I'm here, Eddie. Let's get inside the house. Then we can talk."
"I really just want to sleep," he whined.
"I'm sorry, but if you sleep, I'm going to have to wake you up every hour."
His broad shoulders heaved a sigh. "Fine, if you say so."
"It's really for your own good. I'd let you sleep if I could." I wrapped my arm around his waist and helped guide him to the door and inside my house.
Our coats were hung up in the closet in the entryway, keys thrown in the bowl on the table, and shoes kicked into the closet. We walked the few steps to the staircase, and I stared at it. How in the hell was I going to get him up those stairs? He was already swaying where we stood. Screw it; let's just go for it. If we fall, I'll try to be on the bottom of the stack this time. "Hey, we have to go up some stairs. I'm right here. Think you can make it with my help?"
"Uh-huh," he managed to mutter. His eyes cracked open and we started our snail's pace up the stairs. He tripped a few times, but we made it to my bedroom in one piece. I pushed him to sit on the edge of the bed and knelt on the floor to take his shoes off. I peeled his socks off and tucked them in his shoes. Moving to stand on my knees, I found myself between his legs. This was not how I pictured this happening. Not at all. My hands helped him remove his shirt. Sliding the fabric from his body, I realized the tat on his pec muscle was not his only ink. Oh my God. This man was so incredibly hot. Much more than I could have imagined. His long, lean neck fed into broad and muscular shoulders. His arms were lean and marvelously strong, but his chest! Oh my god, his chest was amazing. I'd known it would be great, but this was… I just wanted to lick him everywhere. Damn. I leaned forward and pressed a kiss to the tattoo over his heart- the memorial to his step-father. My hands skimmed down his arms to twine our fingers together. My eyes seemed to have a mind of their own as they continued to drink him in. Abs that were well-defined- I counted them quickly- eight. The man had eight definitive abdominal muscles. I wanted to trace each groove with my tongue.
I stood up, moving my hands to his hair. Smoothing it down a bit, I asked, "Eddie? Do you want to lay down?"
"Yeah," he whispered. "But I can't sleep in these jeans." He pushed himself to stand, leaning heavily against me.
"You can't sleep in your pants?" I knew my eyes were wide and I could feel the heat flooding my face as it infused with a deep red blush.
"How far down does that blush go, anyway? Can I see?" Eddie's inhibitions had apparently disappeared with the pain.
"Um, I-I-I, um- it goes down. Far enough?"
He chuckled, "Oh little girl. One of these days, I'm gonna find out for myself." Eddie's eyes traveled down and back up my body in an obvious eye-fuck, before he continued, "Better yet, why don't you show me now?"
Glassy eyes had locked with mine and I didn't know how to respond. Instead of replying incoherently again, I decided to take his pants off. My hands fumbled with the buckle on his belt until it was finally undone. My fingers numbly worked the button-fly jeans open and shoved them down his narrow hips, and trim legs. He was almost naked. The only clothing shielding his body from me was the boxer briefs that clung to him- and they did nothing to hide his huge erection.
I swallowed thickly, my breath leaving in quick puffs from my lungs. My Lord. I really wanted to jump him right then. Just take what I wanted and leave the consequences for tomorrow. It was obvious he'd be willing. I couldn't do it. That would be taking advantage of him. He wasn't in his right mind. I couldn't do that. Isabella Marie! Get your head on straight, girl! You can't do it. You can't have sex with Eddie tonight.
It was the hardest thing I'd ever done- pushing him back to the bed and telling him to go to sleep after checking his head. He needed to rest, and I'd be waking him up every hour. His arms reached for me, to pull me down beside him. I evaded neatly so I could dress in my pajamas. Opting for the big tee shirt, I slipped it on and hurried through my nightly ablutions: teeth brushing, face washing, etc. Once that was done, I slid into bed beside Eddie. I couldn't help but take better notice of the beautiful tattoo that curved up his side to his back, coming to rest on his shoulder. The dragon was a blend of reds, oranges, blues, and greens. I couldn't help but trace along the edges with my finger. Finally, I curled myself around him to sleep. He sighed contentedly.
I lay there, watching the clock tick by the minutes, happy to enjoy the warmth and feel of him beside my body. He was warm, vital, and real. I could feel his respirations as he inhaled and exhaled. His heart was a steady thrum beneath my ear that was pressed to his back.
I thought about the last few weeks and how crazy-unreal everything had been. Rachel and Paul… running into Simon, the blind dates from hell… It all swirled like a colorful mosaic through my mind. I had a feeling I was going to have to avoid Paul like a medieval concubine tried to avoid the black plague. He was a weird one. Maybe I could get Eddie to go to a family dinner with me? He didn't seem like it would bug him before. Rachel would salivate over him and maybe Eddie could keep Paul away from me.
Another glance at the clock and it was time to wake Eddie up. I wasn't looking forward to continuing this. He didn't want to wake up in the car. I had a feeling this wasn't going to be a cake walk. Shaking his shoulder gently, I whispered, "Eddie? Eddie. You have to wake for a minute. You have to talk to me."
"Mmm, Bella," he sighed.
My eyebrows shot to my hairline. He was talking in his sleep, but it was to me. It could have something to do with him hearing my voice… who knows?
"Eddie? C'mon, wake-up. Please?"
"C'mere, baby," he whispered.
I sat up and leaned over him, his arm snaking around my waist and pulling me down to his chest as he rolled to his back. His lips sought mine out and he kissed me like he'd never kissed me before. One hand crept up my thigh and under my sleep shirt while the other tangled in my hair to keep my face pressed to his. His tongue swept along my lower lip seeking entrance, so I opened to him. Eddie's hand continued its path up my body, under my shirt, gliding along my smooth skin, up between my shoulders and down my side until he finally rested it on the side of my breast.
Still unsure as to whether he was awake or not, I couldn't decide if I should let him do what he wanted to or try to stop him. Goodness knows I'd be putty in his hands if he were conscious.
Finally, I pulled back enough that I could breathe, sucking in great gulps of air trying to catch my breath. I was still on top of him and as I pulled back a bit more, I could see the confusion in his eyes, "Bella?"
"Yeah, Eddie. Remember what happened earlier?"
"That explains my headache. Did, uh, did I accost you in your sleep?"
"No, you didn't do anything wrong. I was… well… I- I, I was quite happy."
There went the eyebrow- quirked in that sexy smirk of his. "So, you were taking advantage of me, then, were you?"
"No! I wouldn't, could never, I can't…. I just… You kissed me."
His laughter shook the bed and he rolled us over again- until he was on top. Staring down into my eyes, he leaned down and brushed his lips over mine. One hand was still under my shirt and he skimmed it from my hip to my stomach. "So soft. Your skin is like silk, Isabella."
I was glad that he didn't have super-senses- certain he would be able to smell the arousal in the air if he did. Every time he said my full name, my panties were incinerated.
"What about you? You are velvet covered steel, Eddie. Your skin is smooth but it covers steel-muscles." What the hell was this? Spill all your secrets night? Jesus Christ, Bella, shut up!
"Heh," He even had a smirk sound. "I think I like this reaction, I may have to go around almost naked all the time."
I made a strangled noise in my throat, "I'm glad to see you'll have no lasting damage from that blow to the head."
He laughed outright then, "Is that all you have to say about that?"
"Well, that's all I'm going to say for now," and to shut him up, I kissed him.
His hand that was doodling lazy patterns on my ribs inched higher and higher until he was caressing and rubbing my breast- rolling my nipple between his thumb and finger. I couldn't suppress a moan. My god, he had magic in his touch. His mouth trailed kisses down my jaw to the nape of my neck and along my shoulder. His hands bunched my sleep shirt up and his mouth descended to my breast, sucking it deep within his hot mouth. I swear I whimpered. "Eddie, I need... mmmmm…."
Releasing me from his mouth, he hummed, "What do you need, Bella?"
"You…" His head returned to my chest, and his hand crept ever lower… Just as he reached the point of no-return…
His phone chimed. He rolled off me, and I scurried to find his cell. I could hear him muttering curse words while I searched the floor and the pockets of his jeans. Striking gold in the front left side, I pulled it out of the depths of his pocket. "It's your brother. Do you want me to answer it?"
He held his hand out and I gave it to him. His thumb slid across the screen and he held it to his ear, "What's up, Car?... I'm fine…. Yes…. No….. Okay. I'll call you in the morning and let you know I'm still alive." His thumb slid back across the screen and dropped it to the floor. "He wanted to make sure you woke me up and that I'm fine. And also to ask if he should call again in an hour."
"Ok. How's your head feeling, now?"
"It still hurts, but I'll be fine, beautiful. My head is thick. It would take more than a fall to break me."
I couldn't help but tear up a bit. I had a feeling it was going to be my time of the month soon and my hormones were all out of whack. "I'm really sorry, Eddie. I should have paid more attention."
"Hey, hey… No crying Isabella. I'm none the worse for wear. I swear. C'mere," He held his arms out to me and fell into bed against him, curling into his side. H wrapped me in his arms and kissed the top of my head.
The rest of the night passed without any recurring passion besides a peck on the lips after I woke him each hour.
A/N: So... What do you think? Don't be shy! Leave me some love... Who thinks Carlisle is going to get a black eye? I know I'd like to give him one. ;)
Next chapter has a few changes to be made to it, so I'll see you next week!