A/N: Hi! I'm back with a little more from this lovely little family. Thanks so much for checking this out. Can't believe it's been a year since the first chapter of Fatherhood posted!
Massive thank you to BookwormBaby2580 and MelissaMargaret for beta'ing.
Thanks, Kelley, Sammymoso, Vanessa, Marita, and twicrazreader for pre-reading.
And a big thank you to IllicitWriter for the great banner, which is on my profile.
Small disclaimer: I do not own 'Twilight' or any characters from it. I just play with them.
As I watched Little One stumble, trying to mimic whatever fucking move it was that the teacher wanted her to do, I felt the burn of tears in my eyes. Jesus Christ, I was about to cry. My little one was five years old and tomorrow, she'd be starting kindergarten. Where the hell had the time gone? It felt like just yesterday I watched her crawl for the first time and got so excited that I recorded it. But here she was now, attempting to dance without falling over. She wasn't doing a very good job at it, by the way.
I didn't know how the hell it happened, but even though Bella wasn't her biological mom, Sofia seemed to be just like her — down to the coordination. She would even bite her lip when she was nervous, which she was doing right now. The teacher had the girls stop, and Little One was biting her lip, looking down at her feet because she was afraid the teacher would criticize her for not getting the moves right.
"All right, I think that's enough for tonight," the teacher, Ms. Bartlett said, smiling. "Pack up and go home. I'll see you next week."
As the girls disbanded, Ms. Bartlett pulled Sofia aside. I quickly grabbed the pink duffle bag and walked over, wanting to make sure she wasn't being mean to my kid. Luckily for her, she wasn't. She offered Little One words of encouragement and told her to practice at home. Honestly, I didn't know why Sofia wanted to keep coming back here. Bella and I put her in the class a few weeks ago so she could make friends, but it was clear ballet wasn't going to be her skill. Still, we offered her a chance out and she didn't take it.
Little One shuffled over to me, putting her arms out for me to pick her up. "You're getting better," I said, kissing her cheek.
She looked at me, pouting. "I suck, Daddy. I sweaw I'm twying, though."
"I know you are, Little One. Let's go home and see what Mommy's up to, all right? I heard this rumor that she's making spaghetti for dinner." I smiled, walking out of the studio.
"Wealy?" she asked, eyes wide with a smile.
"Really," I chuckled, unlocking the car.
Once I had her buckled into the booster seat, we headed to our house on the outskirts of Forks. The move here was probably the best thing we could have done, and though I wish Charlie hadn't had his heart attack, I was thankful we left Port Angeles. Forks Community Hospital certainly wasn't the busiest place, but I enjoyed it. I still performed surgery, but with a hospital so small, I got to work in other departments, too. And I still worked at Olympic Medical Center when Emmett needed me. It was the best of both worlds. I was home by five most days, but other days I had difficult, time consuming surgeries that I loved. I was so fucking happy, even though just a few short years ago I never wanted any of this. If I could kick myself, I would.
Little One and I got home just after six, and we found Bella in the kitchen, just finishing up. I set Sofia down on her feet and whispered in her ear, "Go surprise hug Mommy."
She tiptoed over and threw her arms around Bella's legs, yelling, "I got ya!"
Bella laughed and turned around to pick her up. "You did, sweet girl. You scared Mommy so good." She put her hand over her heart and sighed dramatically. "I'm not sure my heart will ever return to normal."
"Daddy!" Little One yelled needlessly. "I scawed Mommy sooo good!"
"I saw," I laughed, pressing my lips to Bella's.
"Yucky! Put me down."
She put Sofia down, and I pulled her against my chest, kissing her deeper as I caressed that spot behind her ear. We parted, smiling. "I missed you," I said.
"I missed you, too. Dinner is about done, so why don't you go make sure Sofia can get out of her leotard without maiming herself?"
"Good idea," I laughed. "I love you."
I softly kissed her once more. "I love you, too," she said.
Thankfully, Little One managed to put a t-shirt and shorts on all by herself. We washed our hands together, and she sang the song we had made up. Well, Bella had made up. I had no part in creating a song about washing away germs with the puffy, pink colored soap. But hey, if it got her to do it, I was game.
I carried my squealing child over my shoulder back downstairs for dinner, just in time for Bella to put the plates down. Of course Little One ate that shit up, making a mess of her face. Yeah, Bella's spaghetti was a favorite of mine and Sofia's, but at least I kept myself clean.
"So, what did Nana do with you and Ben today?" Bella asked Little One.
"Pawk! But Ben was a meanie and pushed me down, Mommy," she said, frowning. "Nana gaves him a time out, though. And afta that, we went to the flowa place and I got to make a . . . bucket, wight?"
I smiled. "Bouquet, but close."
"Yeah, so that was fun. Then she dwopped me off with Daddy, and I got to play in his office," she said, taking another large bite of spaghetti.
"She made sure Sally was healthy," I laughed, remembering her using my stethoscope to listen to her doll's nonexistent heart. Fuck, my kid was adorable.
"That sounds like such a fun day, sweetie," Bella said. "Are you ready for tomorrow?"
Little One nodded with her mouth full. "You be thewah, wight?"
"Swallow, baby," I said, picking up another bite.
She chewed and swallowed. "Sowy."
"It's all right." Bella smiled. "And yes, I'll be there, but remember you're not in my class. You're in Mrs. Peter's class."
"I know, Mommy," she sighed, not liking it.
When she found out Bella wouldn't be her teacher, Little One threw a fit and decided she wouldn't be going to school. We had to sit down with her and explain that mommies weren't allowed to teach their kids, but that school would still be fun. After crying and throwing her stuffed animals — which earned her a time out — she finally agreed to go to school as long as she could have lunch with Mommy. Little One's temper tantrums were fucking frightening, let's just say. Apparently, she got that from me, according to Mom. Yeah, I could see that.
Once we had finished dinner, Bella took Little One upstairs for her bath as I did dishes. It was our deal since she cooked, and I didn't mind it. Bella did so much every day, so a little dishes and trash were nothing to me.
"She wants to play Barbies with us," Bella said, wrapping her arms around my stomach. "I told her to get them out, and we'd be up soon."
"Barbies," I chuckled softly, shaking my head.
Who would have thought I'd be playing Barbies with my daughter? Sure as hell not me, but then again, I had also worn a tutu and had tea time with her. The pictures were deleted, by the way.
I turned around as Bella kept her arms around me and dipped my head to kiss her. When we parted, she bit her lip, hiding a smile. "You'll always be my Nibbles," I said, smirking.
"Damn," she laughed.
After a good while of moving a Barbie doll around, playing out some imaginary wedding that Little One had come up with, we cleaned up and put her in bed. Bella and I lay on either side of her and read Where the Wild Thing Are, taking turns on each page. Not long into the book, I looked down to find Sofia drifting off. Her little mouth opened wide with a yawn as she rested her head against my chest. Once she was asleep, we stopped reading and quietly got out of bed.
I pulled the blankets up to her shoulders and leaned down, kissing her forehead. "Sleep well, Little One," I whispered.
Bella did the same, and then we tiptoed out of her room and pulled her door to. I put my arm over her shoulder as we headed back downstairs. Our nightly goal of getting Little One in bed by eight was a success tonight, which considering tomorrow was her first days of kindergarten, was unbelievable.
"I think your mom wore her out today," Bella laughed as we sat down on the couch and I pulled her into my arms.
"Park plus no nap is a good thing, apparently. Add in ballet and I'm surprised she didn't pass out early."
"How was she tonight?"
"Same. Two left feet, just like her mom." I smirked. "She still doesn't want to quit, but she thinks she sucks. I mean, I'll never say it to her, but she kind of does."
"Edward!" she said, slapping my chest. "She's just . . . new. I'm sure with practice she'll get better."
I snorted. "Have you seen her? The second she hurts herself — which I'm pretty sure is coming — she's done."
"We'll have to start looking into other things, then. She likes the interaction with other kids. Maybe she'll want to quit once she starts school."
"God, I hope so," I sighed. "So, how was your day? Did you get your classroom all set up?"
Bella had finally gotten a job here in Forks last year after one of the kindergarten teachers retired. It worked out pretty well, actually. We put Sofia in preschool and daycare afterwards, so she got to make friends and interact with people she didn't know. Bella missed being home with her, but she was also ready to get back to work.
She nodded, leaning into me. "I did. I'm excited for tomorrow, especially since I'll have my little girl with me."
"What about you? How was your day?"
"Good, I spent most of it in the ER. I saw your dad, by the way. He said he's going to come over tomorrow to see how Sofia did at school."
She smiled up at me, cocking her head. "How are you doing with that?"
I shook my head. "I can't believe it's time. Putting her in preschool was hard enough. I don't think I'm ready for kindergarten."
"If you cry, I'm taking pictures."
"I about did today, Bella. When I was watching her during ballet, I kept thinking how the time has passed too quickly. Doesn't it seem like just yesterday she talked for the first time?"
"It does. You know, I'm still amazed that 'fuck' wasn't her first word." She smirked.
"Well, it wasn't. That didn't come out until close to her first birthday," I chuckled lowly. Yeah, that wasn't cool, and her doing it near Mom was even worse. "But it does seem too quick, right? She's growing up too fast. Before I know it, she'll be dating and I'll be a murderer."
"Nice," she laughed.
I kissed the top of her head. "I just . . . she's all we have."
She sat up and turned to face me as a smile played on her lips. "What if she wasn't?"
"Bella, we've been trying for a long time. I want another kid too, but it's not happening."
"Well . . . it has."
My eyes widened as I sat up. "What?"
She placed her hand against her stomach and nodded. "I was going to tell you tomorrow night. You know, make something cute out of it, but yeah, Edward, I'm pregnant."
I stared at her flat stomach in awe. She was pregnant. Not long after we had gotten married three years ago, we had decided we wanted another baby, but we waited until last year for her to go off of the pill. It just wasn't the right time. Little One was a toddler — a handful, really — so we waited until she started preschool to start trying. Only it didn't happen. We didn't push it, but instead decided to just go about as usual and when it happened, it happened. But after a year, it hadn't. We didn't talk about it much, but there had been a short discussion of involving a fertility specialist. We decided against it right now, though. We figured we'd give it a little more time.
"You're . . . pregnant." I smiled, laying my hand against hers. "With my baby."
She laughed. "Of course it's yours! Who else's would it be?"
"Well, I'd hope no one's," I chuckled. "Bella, we're having a baby."
She nodded. "I know. I didn't believe it when I first thought of it, but I'm two weeks late. It made sense, so I bought a test on my way home today."
I pulled her into my arms and pressed my lips to hers. Our tongues moved together as my hand slid under her shirt and laid against her flat stomach. In just a few short months, I'd feel a baby move. My baby. I fucking hated that I didn't get that with Little One, so I was already planning on making the most out of this. Bella, my wife, was having my baby. Little One would be a big sister, and I'd be a dad again. Maybe I wouldn't be so freaked out over every little thing this time.
Who the hell was I kidding? Yes, I would.
"I love you so much," I said, pressing my forehead to hers. "Bella, I'll never be able to thank you enough for loving me — for trusting me to be the man you thought I could be. We're going to be parents again. Holy shit."
She pecked my lips softly. "If this baby's first word is a curse, I'm divorcing you."
I laughed, picking her up off of the couch. "Sure, Nibbles, sure."
I carried her upstairs, trying to be quiet so we wouldn't wake Sofia. The kid had just become more of a cockblocker as she got older, so I didn't get as many chances as I wanted to make love to my wife. Tonight, though, she was passed out, and I locked the door behind me before laying Bella down.
I took my time taking her clothes off and kissing every inch of her. Her head fell back on the pillow as she moaned, asking for more. I placed my hand against her stomach, moving down slowly as goose bumps rose on her skin. She parted her legs, begging for me.
I kissed her, nibbling on her lip. "I've missed you," I whispered, moving my fingers into her, pumping slowly, finding her so fucking ready for me. I couldn't wait any longer. It had been almost two weeks, after all.
I moved between her legs, pushing into her slowly, relishing the feeling of being in my Bella. My beautiful, beautiful Bella. God, she was amazing.
"Daddy, it's not wight!" Sofia yelled, fucking up the French braid pigtails Bella had done before she left.
Bella had to be at the school early today, so she helped Little One get dressed and ready before breakfast. Of course now there was something wrong with the pigtails, and I was screwed because I couldn't fix them.
"Baby, you have to eat or we'll be late," I said, picking up her spoon and holding it out for her. "Please, if you finish quickly, we'll have Mommy fix them before anyone sees you."
She huffed, grabbing the spoon from my hand. Yeah, the morning wasn't going so great. I knew she was scared, but so was I, and her attitude wasn't helping. Today was my little one's first day of school. Fuck, I just wanted to go back to when she was a baby and couldn't talk or walk. I would have wanted to keep the potty training, though.
God bless potty training.
"You're going to make lots of new friends today and see some of your old ones, too," I said, rubbing her back as she ate. "Remember Macy from preschool? She'll be there."
"Weally? In my class?"
I nodded. "Yeah, we saw her a few days ago when we met your teacher. I'm sure there will be other kids you know there, too."
"But not you." She pouted. "And not Mommy."
I smiled, caressing her cheek. "I'll be there to pick you up, though, and you're having lunch with Mommy. You won't even have time to miss us."
"But it's alllll day. That's not faiwah."
"It's not alllll day," I mimicked. "Just until three o'clock. While you're there, I'll be at work like usual. You'll see me the same amount as always."
She shrugged, putting her spoon in the almost empty bowl. "I don't wanna go."
"I know, Little One." I kissed her cheek. "But you have to. Are you finished?"
She nodded, blowing out a dramatic breath. "Yeah."
Sofia took her sweet time, dragging her feet to the car. If I hadn't felt so bad for her, I would have been impressed with her tactics of wasting time. She forgot her lunchbox in the house, complained her seatbelt was too tight so I had to redo it, and last but not least, she had to potty again — you know, after I fixed her seatbelt twice. Kid was resourceful.
"Would you like to listen to The Wiggles?" I asked, looking in the rear view mirror. She just shrugged, pouting. "Fine, Daddy's music, then."
"Wiggles," she mumbled.
I smiled to myself, turning on the god-awful music she liked. Only for her . . . and eventually, her sibling. I was still on a high after last night's news, and Little One's sour mood couldn't bring me down. Bella and I had decided to wait until she saw a doctor to tell people, just in case. She promised she'd call her doctor during lunch today, though. Hopefully, she could get in soon because I wanted to shout this from the rooftops.
When we got to the school — still early, thankfully — I texted Bella and asked her to come out and help with Little One's braids. While we waited, I got Sofia out and put her backpack on her. I blew a raspberry on her check, hoping to make her smile. Of course she couldn't resist it.
Point for Dad. "You look so pretty," I said, fixing the strap on her backpack and pulling the sleeve of her dress down. It was pink with white polka dots on the skirt. She and Bella took forever to finally pick the outfit.
"Yeah?" she asked softly before biting her lower lip.
I smiled, nodding as I saw Bella approach us. "Yes. And here comes Mommy."
"Look at my baby!" Bella said, grinning. "Are you ready for school?"
I shook my head, mouthing, "No."
"Do I hafta?" Sofia asked as her pout returned.
"Aww, sweetie," Bella sighed, kneeling down. "You have to go to school. You're a big girl, right?"
Little One nodded. "Uh-huh."
"Well, you can't be a big girl if you don't go to school."
"But my piggy tails awen't wight."
Bella smiled, kissing her cheek. "Good thing Mommy's here then, huh? Turn around for me."
Bella worked her magic quickly, redoing the braids so they looked perfect again. Once Little One was satisfied with the look and feel, we took her hands and walked into the school. We were early, so no one else was in Little One's classroom except her teacher. We went to Sofia's cubby and put her lunchbox in there before finding her table. She sat down and bit her lip, looking around.
Bella said goodbye first, since she had to get to her classroom. She took Little One's hands and smiled. "You're going to have so much fun, sweetie," she said. "I'm right next door, but you won't need me. You're a big girl, and I know you can do this. Everyone will love you."
Sofia nodded. "M'kay. I love you, Mommy."
Bella kissed her forehead, lingering for a moment. "I love you, too. I'll see you at lunch, all right? We'll eat in my room, but if you find you want to eat with your new friends, that's okay, too."
We both hoped Little One would rather eat with her friends, but Bella certainly didn't mind if she wanted to eat with her, like planned. After kissing both of our daughter's cheeks, Bella stood up and we said goodbye after taking a few pictures — which Little One did smile for. I took Bella's place, kneeling down beside Sofia.
"I'm gonna miss you, Daddy," she said.
"I'm going to miss you too, just like I do every day," I said. "Do you need anything? We have all your supplies in your backpack, remember?"
She nodded. "Yep."
I sighed, smiling even though my heart was fucking breaking. I really wasn't ready for this. It was such a huge milestone in her life. From now on, she'd go to school. There'd be no more keeping her home with me on my days off or surprising her in the middle of the day to go to the park. "You're growing up, baby," I said.
"I'm a big girl." She smiled.
I nodded. "Yes, you are. You'll always be my little one, though."
She flew forward, wrapping her tiny arms around my neck. "Can you stay with me? Please?"
Damn, I wanted to so badly. "I'm afraid not." I patted her back. "I'll be here to pick you up, though. The hours will fly by. Let's look at the clock."
We pulled away, and I pointed to the big clock above the door. "See that three?" I asked.
She nodded, knowing her numbers.
"Well, when that big line points to it, I'll be here again."
"Pwomise?" she asked, looking at me with my own green eyes.
"I promise. You can tell me everything you did then, okay? I want to know it all."
"I'll tell you." She smiled.
I cupped her face in my hands and kissed her forehead. Little One hadn't cried, but I was about to if I didn't man up. Jesus, this was hard. "I'll see you soon. I love you."
"I love you too, Daddy. Do you hafta go now?"
I nodded. "I do. Sick people need me, remember?"
"Bye-bye, baby," I said, kissing her cheek one last time before I stood up and walked away, leaving her there.
Three o'clock needed to fucking hurry.
A/N: Thanks for reading and supporting! I'm not entirely sure how long this will be, but certainly not as long as Fatherhood.
Oh, and I'm on twitter as anhanninen.