No words. But it's finally done.
Push Part II
"I'm so glad this is nearly over," I breathed a sigh of relief and relaxed further into the couch, watching Edward place the last few presents under the tree before he sat down beside me, throwing his arm over my shoulder and pulling me close to his side.
I rested my head against his chest.
"Me too." He kissed the top of my head. "Esme keeps hinting at giving her more grandkids, I'm glad we can finally tell them."
"Alice totally knows something's up. She keeps asking me to try on some new clothes she's designed and I can't think of anymore reasons not to."
Edward smiled and smoothed his hand over my tummy.
Ever since we'd found out I was pregnant, three months ago, he couldn't keep his hands off.
"I can't get over it," he murmured and I knew exactly what he was talking about. We'd had our 12 week scan this morning and we had seen our baby for the second time. The first time we saw a tiny little bean. But today.
It was real. So fucking real. There was a baby and we'd listened to the kid's heartbeat and I'd cried like a little girl.
Edward had wanted to tell everyone right away when we found out we were pregnant but I wanted to get past the third month mark when we were completely out of the danger zone.
I hadn't been able to shake the feeling that something would go wrong. It was just too perfect. I was terrified.
Edward had tried his best to reassure me that everything would be fine but I was still freaking out. Until this morning, when we'd seen that little person and listened to that heartbeat.
I knew then everything was going to be okay.
I kissed Edward's chest, right above his heart and his arms tightened around me.
"Sucks Seth and Leah couldn't make it." Edward commented.
"Hmm," I hummed, "But I can't wait to send them that picture."
I'd taken a photo of Bear apparently reading What to Expect When You're Expecting, and made a card out of it.
"You happy to tell the rest of them like this?" Edward asked.
"Of course!" I laughed, "This is going to be amazing!"
I twisted my positioning a little so I was resting back against the arm cushion and threw my legs over Edward, getting comfortable.
"We're never getting rid of this couch," I moaned, completely and totally relaxed.
Edward grinned, "Even when this couch is old and lumpy we're never getting rid of it. It's been through a lot."
I smiled widely. "You proposed to me on this couch."
"That I did," Edward smiled back.
"Push! Come on! Shit, no."
The whispered muttering was stirring me from my slumber.
I'd fallen asleep on the couch waiting for our take-out food to arrive.
I'd got back to the apartment after taking Bear for his evening walk, and found Edward sitting waiting for me at our little table out on the balcony, lit by candles and the Eiffel tower in the distance.
I had smiled as he greeted me with a kiss and a glass of champagne.
"Edward, this is beautiful," I murmured, noticing the plates and cutlery laid out on the table, "what's the occasion?"
"No occasion," he grinned, "just love you. That's all."
"Oh, that's all," I shrugged with a smile. "Did you cook?"
He nodded, "Yeah, just a few more minutes. Hungry?"
We had sat ourselves at the table when suddenly the skies opened up and it thundered and poured extinguishing the candles and soaking us to the bone.
"Shit!" I laughed.
"Fuck, quick, get inside," Edward made for the handle but the door wouldn't open.
"Oh my god, are we locked out?"
The key that was usually in the door wasn't there.
We were drenched by the time we had found the little key that had fallen and hidden in the crack behind a potted plant.
"I'll grab us a towel," Edward muttered heading for the bathroom.
What was that smell?
I wandered into the kitchen.
"Shit! Edward!" I called.
He came running into the kitchen right as I opened the oven and disappeared in a cloud of smoke.
Then the smoke alarm went off.
"Fuck," Edward growled.
"You get the…food. I'll shut of the smoke alarm," I choked.
I would have laughed at the whole situation but when I got back to the kitchen Edward looked miserable, staring at the charcoal he'd made, his hair dripping, his clothes plastered to his body.
"It's fine," I told him, wrapping my arms around him from behind and kissing between his shoulder blades. "We can always get take out."
"Yeah," he sighed, "I'll grab the phone."
While he ordered our food I changed into my sweats and one of his hoodies, drying my hair as best I could with a towel and headed to the living room.
He'd lit the fire and I snuggled next to him on the couch, waiting for the food to arrive.
I must have dozed off because the next thing I knew was Edward's muttered whisperings.
"Edward?" I opened my eyes to see him sitting on the couch in front of me, looking utterly defeated. "What's the matter?"
He muttered something like, "S'not how it's meant to happen."
"Not how what's meant to happen?" I asked drowsily, sitting up and rubbing my face with my hand.
I frowned as something cold and smooth ran across my cheek.
I opened my eyes and looked at my hand.
Oh my god.
"Oh my god." There was a ring on my finger. A diamond ring on my ring finger. A diamond ring on my ring finger on my left hand… that had yet to make it past my knuckle.
I looked up at Edward, wide-eyed mouth agape, to see a small frown on his face, a little pout on his lip and his eyes were watching me warily.
"E-Edward?" My voice trembled.
"Fuck. Bella," he ran his hands through his damp hair. "I love you so much. It wasn't supposed to happen like this, it was supposed to be romantic and perfect but everything that could possibly go wrong did go wrong and shit, I really wish I hadn't burnt the dinner, and I really wish I hadn't dropped the fucking key and I wish I had the power to stop the rain for you and I really, really, really fucking wish I hadn't been stupid enough get the wrong size ring, but it's now probably stuck on your hand forever so you have to marry me." My jaw dropped and his eyes widened even further, "Shit. I mean, you don't have to. Of course you don't have to, but I want you to, fuck, now you're crying, please don't cry. Shit, I'm sorry."
He buried his face in his hands, took a deep breath then looked up at me again.
"Bella," he breathed. "I know this is far from perfect, and couldn't be less romantic if I tried. I know I'm shit at cooking, and I can't stop the rain and I know the damn ring doesn't fit. But… I love you. More than anything. And that's something I am good at. And I'm good at making you smile and I promise to make you smile every day for the rest of my life… if you'll let me."
He moved closer, caressing my cheek with the back of his fingers, "So, despite all that and despite this perfectly unromantic proposal," I snorted through my tears and he smiled through the tears that had yet to fall, "will you, Bella Swan, do me the incredible honour of marrying me?"
I nodded, smiling behind my hand, "Yes," my nodding turned vigorous, "yes, yes, I'll marry you, yes!"
And I launched myself at him, throwing my arms around his neck.
We locked in a fierce kiss and didn't resurface until I was lying naked on top of his naked form, on the couch in front of the fire.
"Thank fuck for that," he panted, kissing the top of my head after we'd resurfaced. His hand covered mine that rested on his chest. "We'll go to the jewellers tomorrow to get it fitted properly."
"It's perfect," I breathed, admiring the ring.
"It'll be perfect when it fits."
I lifted my head to look at him, "You're perfect. The proposal was perfect. And all those things you said were far from reasons not to marry you. They're the reasons why I love you."
We didn't resurface that second time until morning.
"The perfect proposal," I remembered with a smirk.
Edward rolled his eyes then laughed, "A story to tell the grandkids."
I stared, "How about we get this baby out of me before we start thinking about grandkids?"
He just laughed again, leaning down to kiss my lips before heading to the front door to let in the swarm of Cullens that had just knocked.
After the noisy dinner we'd all gathered in the living room once more and I was sat, once again, on the couch, watching Edward play with his seven-month-old nephew, Michael. He was balancing the giggly baby's feet on his legs, bouncing him up and down and blowing raspberries on his tummy.
He was going to be the best daddy.
Fuck. Don't cry! Hold it together, woman.
"Michael's first Christmas!" I exclaimed, "What have you bought him?" I asked Alice.
She looked appalled. "He's right there."
I stared at her, "He's also seven months old."
"Babies take in a lot of information every day, you never know what he's going to remember in a years time."
"Hopefully not his daddy dropping him," Jasper mumbled quietly beside me. Alice shot him a look and he winked, "Kidding."
"Not funny," she scowled at him.
"How about Michael's fist Christmas photo with the tree?" Edward suggested.
"Yes!" Alice squealed, jumping up and taking Michael from Edward. "Come on, Jas."
"Grandparents, too." I said. "Could you get my camera?" I asked Edward. He grinned and fetched it from the kitchen.
I took off the protective lens while Carlisle, Esme, Alice, holding baby Michael in the middle, and Jasper stood in front of the tree.
Edward leaned against the sofa behind me.
"Aren't you getting in, Edward?" Esme asked.
Edward shook his head, "I'll make sure Michael's smiling in the picture." That was his excuse.
"Ready?" I asked them as I held the camera to my eye.
They nodded, smiling already in preparation for the picture.
"Okay," I said, "After three. One, two, aaaand…"
"Say, 'Bella's pregnant!'" Edward chimed in.
Best. Photo. Ever.
Carlisle's jaw was dropped, Esme's hands were on either side of her face eyes wide mouth open, Alice had one hand clapped over her mouth holding in her scream of joy, Jasper on the end looked a little dazed. Baby Michael in the middle was grinning a big gummy smile.
"I'm going to be a Nana again!"
The noise and exclamations startled Michael and he jumped then started giggling.
Edward leaned down to wrap his arms around me and press a kiss to my cheek before we were ambushed my hugs and tears and congratulations.
"Can't believe you did that to us!" Esme chided tearfully, gently slapping Edward's chest before he pulled her in for a hug.
"I can't believe you told us you were pregnant on Christmas Eve! I could have got you so many different presents!" Alice grumbled, pulling me into a hug.
I laughed, "I'm sure we'll survive, Alice."
"When are you due?" Carlisle asked when we'd all settled down again.
Edward's arms around me, his hand, no surprise, rubbing absently over my tummy.
"June twenty-sixth," he answered.
"Aw, a summer baby," Esme sighed, "Like you, Edward."
"Could be born on your birthday," Jasper said.
"I don't know," Esme murmured, "Edward was born a good week and half after his due date."
"Have you told your parents?" Carlisle asked softly.
Edward's arms tensed a little and I covered the hand on my belly with my own. He hadn't spoken to the Masens since before we were married. He'd called them to let them know we were engaged and was maybe going to invite them to the wedding. Edward never told me what exactly they'd said but he'd been upset and in a bad mood for a few days afterwards, and there wasn't a place set for them at our wedding reception.
"I just did," Edward said with a slightly tight smile but it still reached his eyes.
I kissed his cheek soothingly and he squeezed me gently.
I had no idea if Edward was going to tell the Masens about this baby, but the decision was his, I wasn't going to push him.
"A week and a half," I whimpered, throwing my arm over my face, "A week and a half, Edward!"
Esme had been right. This baby was late. Just like Edward.
It had been a long pregnancy and a hot summer and I was ready to get this kid out of me.
Edward had been great. He'd taken it all in his stride, holding my hair back for morning sickness, the back and foot rubs, the midnight runs for marmite and Phish Food ice cream.
And I'd loved it, too. I loved being pregnant. I loved feeling our baby move inside me. I cried my eyes out the first time he kicked – assuming the baby's a he, we have no fucking clue. I'd even taken the aches and pains pretty well. Braxton hicks were a piece of cake.
Being heavily pregnant, a week and a half overdue, during a freaking heat wave – not a piece of cake. I repeat: Not a piece of cake.
"I know, baby," Edward soothed, kissing my round bare belly. It was too fucking hot for clothes so I was lying naked on our bed with three fans whirring in my direction. "Dr Grant said she'd induce labour by the end of this week if Baby Cullen is still a no show."
"I'm so uncomfortable," I whined. I knew I was having a tantrum but I couldn't fucking help it. I was too hot. However I positioned myself on the bed I was uncomfortable and I was trying to stay off my feet as much as possible because they were killing me.
Edward leaned down to kiss my tummy again, "Come on, baby," he murmured, "come out for mommy."
The baby kicked where Edward had kissed so my adorable husband repeated the action, delighting in a smile when the baby kicked again.
"See, I know you can hear me, you're just ignoring me." He reasoned.
"I hope not," Edward grimaced, making me laugh. "There you are," he breathed moving up to press a kiss to my smile, "I hate seeing you so miserable."
I closed my eyes, tired of feeling hot, tired of feeling uncomfortable, tired of feeling tired, tired of feeling too tired to sleep.
"How about a distraction?" Edward murmured softly and I felt his weight leave the bed and heard him fussing around in the en suite.
I knew he was back when his weight dipped the bed again and suddenly something ice cold was trickling down my belly, in between my legs, making me gasp.
My eyes snapped open to see Edward smiling above me, his eyes revelling the sight.
"Feel good?" He asked.
I whimpered when he dipped his fingers in the glass of ice-cold water and trickled drips onto my breasts.
Throughout this entire pregnancy I'd been so incredibly horny. Everything was super sensitive and the slightest touch to my breasts, after the tenderness had disappeared, sent heat and wetness pooling between my legs.
I'd read a lot about women losing the desire for sex. My desire had been heightened ten fold.
Edward loved it. Me, not so much. I mean I would have had I been able to achieve a fucking orgasm, but no. My body was fucked up. I was hot with desire practically 24/7 but for whatever reason, throughout the entire pregnancy I'd had three orgasms. Three. In nine months!
Edward poured a little water over one nipple and I gave a keening whimper of his name.
He lowered his mouth the suck and lick the water from my breasts.
"Edward," I gasped, my chest heaving. "Please." My eyes fluttered closed.
He trailed his wet hand down my belly towards aching my core where I was throbbing for him.
I cried out when his fingers met my clit. "Ohh," I moaned, rocking my hips against his hand, "please."
"What do you want, sweetheart?"
And I knew he was asking if I wanted his hand, mouth or cock. No doubt he was turned on, but Edward was doing this to make me feel better, hoping it would make me more comfortable.
I nearly started crying at how fucking sweet he was. I mean, I very nearly started crying. Because my husband was so understanding, because I'd been horny all through my pregnancy and had only had three orgasms, because my body was fucked up and didn't know how to orgasm anymore for god knows what reason.
And the feeling of his fingers, making oh so sweet, firm, ugh, glorious circles against my clit, was overwhelming. The need for release was overwhelming.
"There, there!" I gasped, unable to articulate what I wanted, but hoping he understood not to fucking stop. "There, ugh, there."
"Right here," he soothed, "I'm not moving from right here."
God I loved him so much. He just fucking knew what I needed.
"Oh, oh, oh," I whimpered, "oh, pl- ohh," There was no voice to my breathless pleas. It was too much. I needed more. Right there. Please don't stop. Don't stop. I need you. Please, Edward. Edward. Edward. "Ohhh." So overwhelming. Couldn't breathe. Too much. Need more. Edward.
"Bella, baby, it's okay," he soothed, kissing away the tears I felt roll down my temples. "Deep breaths," his voice was close and soothing in my ear, pressing gentle kisses to my face, my neck, behind my ear. "It's okay, baby, I know it feels good, sweetheart, so good, I've got you, I'm here, feel me, Bella, feel my fingers, it's just you and me."
"Ohhh," I cried.
"Yeah, baby, so good, want my voice, Bella, want me to talk?"
"Ugh, uhhh, please, oh…"
"You're so wet, baby, can you hear how wet you are? So slick against my hand. I'm aching for you, so hard, baby, it hurts. My cock's throbbing, it needs you so bad, needs your pussy. Do you want to feel me moving inside you? In and out, stroking, hard, strong, pounding your pretty pussy, grinding against your little clit."
"Edward, Edward, Edward,"
"I'm here, I'm right here, hand on your pussy, feel it baby, how good does it feel?"
"Ohhh, Edward." I sobbed, "Need, need it, please."
"I know, sweetheart, I know."
I was chasing it, it was there, so close, please, please let me come this time.
"Deep breaths, don't tense, baby, don't push it, let it come."
"Edward, Edward, Edward,"
"Come for me, sweetheart, come for me."
There, there, there, yes, yes….Yes!
I screamed out his name as I tensed and coiled and whimpered and sobbed.
And came hard.
Edward held me close as I took deep shuddering breaths. He wiped away the tears on my cheeks.
"You okay?" He asked softly.
I nodded into his neck.
"Want a cold shower?"
I nodded again.
He helped me to the bathroom, walking behind me, my back pressed to his chest and climbed into the shower with me.
"Mmm, feels good," I hummed drowsily, letting the cool spray of water rush over me.
Edward kissed my forehead before reaching for the shampoo and washing my hair.
While he was distracted I reached down to grasp my hand around his erection.
"Fuck," he gasped in surprise. "Bella, you don't have to-"
"Shut up," I snapped. He'd been amazing for the past nine months. He'd been amazing the past ten minutes and I wasn't going to make him go without just because my heavily pregnant hormones were all over the place at the moment.
I was about to kneel down when he grabbed my arms and shook his head, "No, Bella, not like that."
I frowned, "Why not?"
He shook his head, "I don't like it."
I arched a disbelieving eyebrow.
Edward shook his head, "I don't mean I don't like it, I mean I don't like it this way."
I stared, confused.
He sighed, "I don't like you on your knees, on hard tile flooring, pregnant… I just don't like it."
He ran a hand over my belly, tenderly.
"Okay," I murmured, taking him in my hand again. "This okay?"
He smiled softly, leaning down to kiss my lips, "Perfect."
After our shower I pulled on Edward's t-shirt and headed back out into the bedroom to find Bear stood right outside the door to the en suite.
I frowned, "What are you doing in here?"
"What?" Edward called from the bathroom.
"Bear's in here." I called back.
He appeared beside me and rolled his eyes, "Damn dog knows he's not allowed in here."
"He's been following me around the house all day," I muttered. "I keep turning around and he's stood right behind me, I've nearly fallen over a couple of times."
Edward frowned at the thought and took my hand as though protecting me from any stumble I may have.
"We should've used that baby gate on the stairs."
I sighed, "We don't need to keep him locked downstairs, he'd just bark all day."
"Bella, the thought that he could knock you over on the stairs scares the shit out of me, I thought you understood this."
"I do," I argued. I did understand why it scared him I just didn't like Bear being shut off from us.
"He's gonna have to be kept downstairs when this one's a little older, anyway," he rubbed my tummy, "might as well start now."
"Fine," I grumbled, not liking the idea one little bit.
"I'll get him downstairs," he said. "Get in bed, I'll be back in a minute. You want anything?" He asked knowingly.
"Peanut butter and a spoon?" I fluttered my eyelashes at him.
"How did I guess?"
We were woken in the middle of the night by a loud crash.
I gasped and Edward sat up, switching on the lamp on his bedside table.
"What was that?" I whispered.
"I don't know," he breathed back. He got out of bed and my heart leapt to my throat.
"Where are you going?"
He turned back to kiss my forehead, I grabbed his hand, "Bella, it's fine baby, the alarm's not going off, it's probably Bear."
I squeezed tighter.
"You gotta let go of my hand, baby."
I squeezed tighter still.
"Bella, I can't go check it out if-"
"Baby." I gasped.
"I think, oh shit, it hurts."
Edward quickly sat down beside me, searching my face, "Contraction?"
I nodded again.
Then Bear suddenly appeared at the door, whining.
"Damn dog," Edward muttered.
I breathed out heavily and Edward quickly looked back to me. "You okay?"
"Yeah." I smiled shakily and Edward kissed me, stroking my cheek. "It's probably why he's been acting strange," I murmured, looking at Bear, "it's in one of the books, dogs can sense when women are about to go into labour."
"He was worried about you," Edward murmured.
"Okay, are you alright for a minute while I get your bag and stuff?"
I smiled, "I'm fine, I promise."
"Okay," he said, though seemed reluctant to leave my side. "I'll be right back." He kissed my cheek before jumping up and disappearing into the closet. He threw a pair of my sweats onto the bed as he passed, heading for the door.
I was pulling on my sweats when Bear whined again and I patted the bed. He jumped up and stood on the bed beside me, sniffing at me. He nudged my tummy gently with his nose.
I reached up to pet him, and he sat. I buried my face in his fur. "I'm scared," I whispered to him. He wouldn't tell.
Then I gasped when another contraction hit me. Shit, that was quick.
Oh fuck, that hurt.
Edward came back into the room and Bear stood beside me again, this time growling at Edward.
"Car's all set," he told me, "ready to go?"
I nodded and made to stand. Edward came over to help but didn't get very far when Bear growled warningly.
"It's alright, buddy," Edward murmured softly, moving towards us slowly, "I'm not gonna hurt her."
"Edward," I whimpered, when a severe twinge hit me.
"Fuck," Edward moved as quickly as Bear would allow, slowly touching his hand to my belly, "Look, I won't hurt her." He knelt down in front of me taking my hand, "Think of something else," he told me, "think of our baby while I try and get you out of the house without Bear ripping my balls off."
I snorted through the pain.
Carlisle and Esme, Alice, Jasper and Michael, Seth and Rachel and Leah and Jacob were all already there before we were.
I was in agony and Edward was going out of his mind with worry, though he thought he was hiding it pretty well, so I let him believe that.
Alice and Esme came over to me while Carlisle pulled a reluctant Edward away and towards the reception muttering something along the lines of, "She'll be fine, but we need to sign her in."
"Hey, Bells, how's it going?" Seth joked.
I glared at him.
He back off with a sheepish grin, "No jokes when Bella's in labour, got it."
I turned to Esme, "I want an epidural."
"But what about your whole natural birth plan-" Alice tried.
"I want an epidural!" I growled at her.
"Okay, okay, give me my hand and I'll give you an epidural!" She winced.
I looked to Seth, "What the fuck is Jacob Black doing here?"
"Oh, he and Leah are sort of together now."
"Oh I see," I snapped, "I get pregnant so that means I only talk about babies, I don't get told all the other stuff."
Seth's eyes widened, "It happened last night."
"A phone call would have been nice!"
"Don't worry about it Seth," Esme said gently and sent him in the direction of Rachel.
I watched Edward and Carlisle returning from the reception a nurse in tow. A nurse staring at my husbands behind.
The nurse, looking too cheery for my liking, came over to me and smiled hugely, "So, what are we in for this morning?"
"We are in for a good slap if we keep eyeing my husband's ass. It's my ass, for my eyes only."
She looked startled. The nerve. "I assure you, miss-"
"It's Mrs." I hissed. I turned to said husband. "I don't like her, I want a different one."
"Well, we're all out of different ones, I'm afraid," Slutty Nurse smiled, "Now, sit yourself down and we'll wheel you right to your room."
I glared, "I don't want to sit down."
I turned to Edward again and murmured pleadingly, "I don't want to sit down."
The car ride here had killed me, all I'd wanted to do was stand up and walk around to ease the pain. The thought of sitting down again made me want to cry.
No matter how much of a bitch I was being Edward knew I was serious.
He wrapped his arm around me and I leaned heavily into his side. "If you'll just show us to the room-"
"It is hospital policy-"
"I refuse to believe that if a man were to be shot in his buttock you would wheel him to his room in a wheelchair. If my daughter does not want to sit down, then she does not have to sit down. Now, kindly, show us to her room."
Great and now I was crying.
"She's so lovely," I sobbed into Edward's shoulder.
He kissed the top of my head, no doubt hiding his grin, "I know, baby."
Slutty Nurse huffed then turned on her heel and marched off.
"Here," she threw a gown towards me viciously and Edward snatched it, frowning at her. "Put it on. Your doctor will be with your shortly." And she stomped out of the room.
I sniffled and started crying again, "She's so mean. I just didn't want to sit down."
"I know, sweetheart," Edward murmured, "You didn't do anything wrong."
"I know that," I snapped. Then sighed heavily, "I'm so sorry."
Edward pulled me into his arms, "It's okay."
"Whatever I say in the next few hours, please just…"
"I'll take it with a pinch of salt." He promised.
"We'll just wait outside," Carlisle murmured and led a glaring Esme from the room. She didn't like Slutty Nurse either.
Edward helped me into the gown and sat me on the edge of the bed, ready for me to hop off if a contraction hit.
The doctor entered the room shortly after.
"Hi, there, Cullens. Great day for a baby."
"It's night time," I muttered.
"Technically it's morning," she contradicted cheerfully. Everbody was too fucking cheerful. "Right, let's have a little looksee, shall we? If you'd just sit back on the bed for me, knees up."
Edward helped me into position.
"Right, you might feel a little pressure, Bella, it won't be too comfortable I'm afraid."
I winced a little, clutching Edward's hand. He leant his forehead to my temple. "You're alright," he breathed.
I was glad we'd requested a female doctor. I had been panicked about it from the beginning and going through this now, I knew we'd made the right decision.
It was a completely different situation, I was having a baby, I wasn't being violated. But the pain that I was feeling now, with Dr Grant's hand doing whatever the fuck it was that really fucking hurt, was too all too familiar. Had we had a male doctor I don't think I'd have coped through this labour.
"There is a nurse I'd like to complain about," I said, gritting my teeth, trying to distract myself. "Who do I talk to?"
Dr Grant chuckled, "Don't worry about her, I believe your mother-in-law has dealt with that."
I loved Esme.
"Well, considering how long it took for this little one to make an appearance the baby's sure in a hurry to meet you. You're a good seven centimetres dilated."
"What does that mean?" Edward asked.
"It means it shouldn't be too long before Bella's ready to start pushing."
I swallowed thickly. "But my waters haven't even broken yet."
Dr Grant frowned, "I assure you, they have."
I looked at Edward and he looked back at me in confusion.
And then in dawned on him the second it dawned on me.
"Oh my god," I breathed.
Edward gave a bewildered laugh.
I covered my mouth, holding in my snort of laughter.
"You couldn't stop peeing," Edward chuckled.
"I'm sorry?" Dr Grant asked.
I bit my lip, feeling my face flush red, "It was this morning, or rather, yesterday morning. I was peeing … and I couldn't stop peeing… but it didn't feel like peeing…" Jesus Christ, did that mean I'd been in labour all day? How the hell had I not known?
I mean I knew I felt less comfortable than normal, but Braxton Hicks had hurt worse than that.
"That would be your waters." Dr Grant smiled.
"Wait, so Bella's been in labour all day?" Edward asked, startled.
"I think so," Dr Grant nodded.
"Why didn't I realise?" I asked.
"Labour affects all women differently. Perhaps you have a high pain threshold."
Edward quickly sprung into action, gently pulling me to the edge of the bed so I could stand. I leant against him, burying my face in his chest.
"High pain threshold my ass," I growled.
"Come on, baby, one more, you're so close!"
Sweat trickled down my forehead, my chest heaving with gasps and pants. The pain. Oh the pain.
"Bella," Dr Grant said, "I need one really big push-"
"I can't!" I sobbed.
"Mr Cullen…" Dr Grant murmured, while I let my head fall back onto the bed, gasping. "We need this baby out. Now."
"What?" I whimpered, lifting my head.
Dr Grant had a concerned look on her face, her eyes gazing meaningfully at Edward.
"What's happening?" I demanded. "Edward?"
Edward's voice was fierce when he said, "Bella, our baby needs you. Do you understand?" Oh my god. What was happening? He brushed damp hair away from my face. "Our baby really wants to come out, he's in a real rush to meet you so you need to give one real big push, okay?"
"Edward," I whimpered, not understanding what was going on. What was wrong with the baby?
"I know you're tired, sweetheart, I know it hurts, but you are the strongest person I know, you are going to be the best mother in the whole damn world, and our baby really needs his mommy right now. You understand?"
I nodded. I didn't understand what was wrong, I had no idea what was happening, but our baby wanted out. "Yes," I breathed.
"You ready to push for me, Bella?" Dr Grant asked.
"That's my girl," Edward pressed a fierce kiss to my temple, securing his hold on my leg. I squeezed his hand.
"On three, okay?" Dr Grant said.
I nodded, taking a couple of deep, shuddering breaths.
"Okay. One, two, three-"
"Push, Bella!" Edward said.
I pushed, hard for what felt like forever.
"Good girl, Bella!" Dr Grant called.
"Keep going, sweetheart, nearly there." Edward breathed into my ear.
Push. Push. Push!
And it was quiet.
I looked to see something small in Dr Grant's hands.
I held my breath.
Edward was quiet beside me. He wasn't breathing either.
A wail. A loud piercing wail that seared through my heart had me crying tears of relief, joy… and then there he was, in my arms, on my chest, all gooey and wrinkly and screaming and perfect.
"Baby Boy Cullen," Dr Grant murmured softly.
And I couldn't take my eyes off him.
Never had I ever loved anyone more than I had loved Edward. I never thought I would. I didn't think it possible.
But here he was, in my arms, so small, so perfect. And love so strong, so powerful and so pure engulfed me.
Edward had my heart and he always would. He was my everything.
But this baby, this little boy… he was my life.
"Hi baby boy," I breathed a whisper through my tears. "I know you," I sniffled, "I know who you are."
He had kicked me, he'd had me peeing five times a night, he had me throwing my guts up, he had me eating peanut butter and marmite sandwiches, and here he was.
"He's real." The whispered words of pure amazement came from Edward.
I tore my eyes away from our son to see him gazing at the little boy in my arms. One of his arms was wrapped around my waist, his chin resting on my shoulder, the other hand was oh so gently, so tenderly trailing the back of a finger over the baby's smooth cheek.
Edward looked to me, tears in his eyes. He kissed me so reverently I thought I would cry.
"Thank you," he whispered, "thank you for our son."
I kissed him again before turning back to the baby. "This is your daddy," I told him with a watery smile, "and he loves us so, so much."
"More than anything," Edward murmured.
"And we love you," I promised.
"What about Edward?" I asked.
Edward shook his head, watching the baby's little face as I nursed him, stroking the fine hairs of his head.
I still couldn't believe he was blonde. But Esme had said Edward had been blonde for about a year or so before his hair turned darker.
"Why not?" I protested.
"We're not naming him Edward." My husband said firmly.
"Because I'm named after my father and I hate it."
"You hate it because you and your father don't get along."
"It just feels like we're naming him after Edward Masen and I don't want that."
Okay. That I understood.
I grimaced a little and Edward asked softly, "Does that hurt?"
"Kind of," I murmured, "It's a little uncomfortable but I think I'll get used to it. I like it."
Edward smiled and kissed my cheek. His smile widened when the baby clutched his finger tightly and wouldn't let go.
"Well what do you suggest?" I asked after a minute or so.
"I don't know," he murmured, "Nothing too fancy."
"Yeah, nothing pompous."
"I would never give my son a pompous name!"
"You wanted to call him Edward."
"Your name is Edward!"
"You're not even making sense anymore."
He shrugged, "I'm tired."
I arched an eyebrow and he grinned sheepishly, "Though not as tired as you must be, my beautiful, perfect wife."
"Much better," I grinned.
"Okay, let's go through the alphabet," Edward suggested, "we each need to think of a name beginning with each letter."
"Okay. Uh… Alex."
"Me too, but you stole it."
I laughed, "Ben."
Edward shook his head, "Brick."
"I've got Anchorman in my head."
I rolled my eyes. Another movie I had introduced Edward to.
Edwards stuck his tongue out in distaste. "Carlisle?"
I smiled, "He'd like that."
"Maybe as a middle name?"
"What's Carlisle's middle name?" I wondered.
"I like Matthew.
"Okay, erm, Daniel."
Edward gave me a pointed look.
"We could call him EJ, Edward Junior, it'd be cute." I argued my point.
Edward pursed his lips, "I'll think about it."
"That's all I'm asking."
"Oh I like that, Fin is cute." But then I looked down at the baby and shook my head, "No, he's not a Fin."
"I… I… erm… forget I. Jacob?"
I scowled at him and he laughed. "Joshua?"
I shook my head again, "He doesn't feel like a Josh."
It was a while before either of us spoke again of any suggestions, simply watching the sleepy baby in my arms.
And then it came to me. The one movie Edward had introduced me to that I had actually rather enjoyed.
"I've never known you to drive so slowly," I laughed at Edward from my place in the backseat besides the baby carrier, which was strapped tightly into the car, holding my most prized possession in the world.
"I'll never drive over the speed limit again," Edward muttered, slowing down at a green light.
"It might change, I don't want to have to brake really quickly."
I hid my smirk behind my free hand, the other held hostage by the sleeping baby.
A car sped around us, horn blaring as it raced through the traffic lights.
"Asshole," Edward muttered under his breath.
"You're gonna have to watch that language from now on," I said.
Edward glanced at me in the rear-view mirror, his expression one of disbelief, "You're telling me to mind my language. Hypocrite."
"The mother's always right," I quoted Esme with a grin. "You did tell them not to do anything too crazy today, didn't you?" I asked warily.
"I promise Alice didn't go too overboard. Esme reined her in."
"Okay," I breathed a sigh of relief. I knew everyone was excited to have the baby home for the first time and I knew they couldn't wait to see him again, but peace and quiet would be beautiful right about now.
Edward and I had been told horror stories from exhausted parents speaking of kissing sleep goodbye, and we wanted to get in enough rest as we could before tonight.
We pulled into the drive and I smiled down at the stirring baby. "We're here," I breathed as Edward got out of the car and quickly carried our bits and pieces indoors.
He appeared again, beaming, as he opened the back door and unbuckled the carrier, his eyes gazing reverently at the little bundle of blue.
"Where's Bear?" I asked, as Edward held the carrier in one hand, the other held out to me as I stepped out of the car.
"Out the back," he said, "I'll bring him in, in a minute."
I nodded. As much as I loved my puppy there was no chance in hell of me risking my son. We were sure Bear wouldn't hurt him on purpose, but this was all new and there was always the risk Bear would get too excited and cause an accident.
"Ready?" Edward asked, stood on the porch beside me right outside the front door.
I looked up at him with a smile, "Ready."
I stepped forward to open the front door and was greeted with big sign hanging in the hallway, "It's a boy!"
I glanced at Edward and he smirked, quietly closing the door.
Not a sound came from anywhere in the house, everything was really quiet and calm. "She's not going to jump out is she?" I asked Edward in a whisper.
He shook his head with a small chuckle, "No."
I peeked through the doorway of the living room and found everyone situated in there. Another sign hung above the fireplace, blue and white balloons dotted about the room and a pile of presents wrapped in silver and blue were on the coffee table.
Everyone stood up as we walked in, wide grins beaming.
"Let's see him, let's see!" Alice whispered.
Everyone crowded around as Edward set the carrier down and lifted our little boy from the seat and into his arms, holding him close.
I kissed the top of his smooth head, smelling the little blonde strands. God, a baby had never smelt so good.
"He's beautiful," Leah breathed from somewhere within the crowd.
"Good lookin' kid," I heard Jacob's voice and couldn't even find it within me to care that he was in my house.
"Edward, he looks just like you did," Esme murmured softly.
"Really?" I asked her.
"Spitting image," Carlisle nodded.
I grinned up at Edward and he smirked at me, rolling his eyes, knowing I was ecstatic our little boy would grow up to look just like his daddy.
"Let's give them a little room, shall we?" Jasper said, tugging a reluctant Alice away from us.
The others followed suit and allowed Edward and I to find a spot on the loveseat. Edward still had the baby snuggled in his arms and I leant against his shoulder, watching him stroke soothing circles into the tiny little hand that clutched his finger.
A click and a snap had the pair of us both looking up to see Esme with one of my cameras in hand and wearing a sheepish smile. "Sorry, you're just adorable."
I grinned back and Edward chuckled softly, "Wanna hold him?" he asked her.
"Always," she beamed, sitting herself down on the couch and holding her arms out to receive her grandson.
"Here," Seth shoved a present into my hands, "this is from me." He looked too pleased with himself.
Rachel rolled her eyes, "Yeah, that one is definitely from him, but don't worry, I picked the real present."
I laughed when Seth shot her a glare which she returned before he went over to kiss her cheek. I looked down at the present in my hands and started unwrapping. I laughed when I read the little onsie and held it up for Edward to see.
"If you think I'm a stud wait until you see my uncle," he read with a grin.
"Aw, man! That was my one!" We looked up to see Jasper waving his own present with a put out look on his face.
"Too bad," Seth grinned, "I'm his favourite."
"No way," he shook his head and I zoned out the playful banter focussing on Esme and Carlisle as they gazed down at their grandson, cooing over him.
"Already wrapped around his little finger," Edward murmured in my ear and I grinned.
"Come on, babe, let's have another one," Jasper was trying to convince Alice.
She looked over at Edward and I with wide eyes and a grimace, making us laugh.
"Jasper, I've barely just shaken off the baby weight from being pregnant with Michael, gimmie a chance to enjoy my clothes again at least."
"You kids just keep popping 'em out," Carlisle laughed, "Especially if they're as good looking as the two grandsons we got now."
"Yeah, someone needs to start working on a girl for us," Esme chimed in.
"That's on you," I said to Alice with a laugh, "I popped that one out yesterday, it's your turn again."
"See, Tink, it's our turn." Jasper grinned.
"I can't wait to have one," Leah sighed dreamily as she gazed at the baby.
Jacob's eyes widened, panicked and he chuckled nervously as he wrapped an arm around her shoulders, "One step at a time, babe."
I glanced at Edward and pulled a face, he smirked back. It was definitely weird seeing Leah and Jacob together but as long as he treated her right and she was happy then I wouldn't complain.
The little grizzles from my son sufficiently distracted me from my step-sister's love life.
"Looks like he wants his mother." Esme smiled softly, gently placing him back in my arms.
"Can you guys please now tell us his name," Alice begged. "Please tell me you've finally made a decision."
Edward looked to me and I smiled before nodding in assent. He grinned kissing my temple and stroking his thumb over the baby's little hand in which is finger was held hostage.
"Everyone," Edward grinned, "this is Luke Carlisle Cullen."
"Momma?" said the sweet little boy sat at the table. He was swinging his legs back and forth in his chair, covering every inch of his ice-cream in sprinkles.
"Yeah, baby?" I asked, pausing in my scrubbing of the saucepan.
"Ya know I look like daddy?"
"Yeah," I said slowly, wondering where this was going.
"And ya know Tia looks like you?"
"Who will the new baby look like?"
I gave up on the saucepan and dried my hands on the kitchen towel, sitting myself at the table beside Luke. At nearly five years old he was full of questions, especially since we'd revealed I was pregnant with his second sibling only a week ago.
"I'm not sure," I said, brushing his messy auburn hair back from his face, it was in serious need of a trim. "The baby might look like daddy like you do. Or he might have my colour hair and daddy's eyes, or have daddy's colour hair and my colour eyes. We won't know until he's here here. Or maybe even until he's a little older."
"Oh," he said, licking a sprinkle from his finger. He frowned thoughtfully before asking, "Ya know Auntie Alice?"
I smiled, "Yes, I know Auntie Alice."
"She looks like Nana." Luke stated.
"Yes, I suppose she does."
"Why doesn't Daddy look like Pops?"
Well that question had me stumped.
Edward and I had never actually explained to Luke that Esme and Carlisle weren't Edward's biological parents. I don't think we had even explained how Esme was technically Edward's aunt. To this little five year old Esme and Carlisle treated him like a grandson, hell, he was their grandson in every sense of the word bar the actual technical term. But as far as Edward and I were concerned the technicalities of our relationship with Carlisle and Esme didn't matter, family was family, they were Edward's parents, end of story.
But Luke's curiosity I knew would not be curbed and I supposed it would be explained to him at some point.
"Well," I said slowly, trying to quickly think of a way to explain the situation in a way he would understand. "This new baby is in Mommy's tummy, right?"
Luke nodded as he spooned some ice cream into his mouth.
"Just like Tia and just like you."
"And Maddie and Mike."
"Maddie and Michael were in Alice's tummy because Alice is their Mommy."
"Right. Well, Alice lived in Nana's tummy once when she was a little baby but Daddy didn't live in Nana's tummy."
I watched as his little face scrunched in concern. "Did he live in Pops' tummy?"
I pressed my lips together to keep from laughing. "No, silly, you know boys can't have babies."
"Then where did Daddy live?"
"Nana has a sister-"
"Yeah, like Tia's your sister. And Daddy lived in her tummy."
Luke blinked. "Nana isn't Daddy's Mommy?" I shook my head. "Where is Daddy's Mommy?"
Damn good question.
The last time I had set eyes on Elizabeth Masen was nearly three years ago when Edward, Luke and I had been in Chicago for a few days. Of course Luke wouldn't remember but he had met his biological grandmother before.
My partner Heidi had begged me to go meet with this new client, she couldn't go having been nine months pregnant at the time and ready to pop. I had been reluctant as Luke was only two and I didn't want to leave him for a long period of time so Edward decided we should make a trip of it. He and Luke would join me in Chicago and Edward was going to show me all his old hangouts and where he grew up. Of course we bumped into Edward's mother. Of course we did.
"Push! Push!" Luke giggled.
"Yeah, Daddy, push!" I demanded.
Luke was held tightly in my lap on the swing, wrapped up warm and snug in his puffy coat and little hat and mittens. Edward's eyes were bright his cheeks red with the cold, his scarf slipped from around his neck as he pulled funny faces and reached out to tickle the two year old every time we swung forward and were close enough for him the push us higher.
"Slave drivers, the pair of you!" But his smile was beaming.
"You love it," I grinned.
The next time we swung forward Edward reached out and held onto the chains of the swing, bringing us to a gentle stop. He took my chin in his hand and tilted my face to meet his lips with mine. "I love you." He smiled.
Edward chuckled pulling away from me to lift Luke into his arms, "Yes, I love you, too."
Luke giggled madly, squealing is pure delight as his father tossed him above his head. But he was soon squirming to get down, pointing at the 'big kid' slide, "Waas da!"
"What's that?" Edward grinned, "You wanna go on the slide?"
"Side," Luke kicked his feet, pointing and leaning his body to encourage Edward to let him down.
Edward popped him on the ground took my hand, helping me to my feet while Luke toddled away on his.
"What?" Edward asked as I linked my arm around his, leaning my head on his shoulder as we followed our son.
"I just… he's just so… gah I just love him so much!"
Edward copied my sigh dramatically, "Woe to be me. I've been replaced with a younger model."
"Damn right you have." I scoffed. "Just look at him." I gestured to Luke who was half running, half toddling as fast he could to the slide but the inch of snow on the ground kept distracting him and he kept stopping to crouch down and touch it before toddling off again. "He's just so goddam cute!"
"You're right, Swan. He's as cute as his mother."
"You charmer, you," I hip bumped him playfully and Edward laughed pulling his arm from my grip so he could wrap it around me and pull me tight to his side.
"God, we're gonna be those horrifically despicable parents aren't we?" I groaned, "The ones that think their kids can do no wrong."
"The ones that have the kids that draw the best pictures in the class." Edward nodded.
"The parents that think their kids are perfect."
"I mean, to be fair, we can't really be those despicable parents if it's all true, right? Because our child is perfect." Edward insisted, eyebrows raised in earnest.
"Of course," I said candidly, "our child is the best."
Edward snorted and kissed the side of my head.
"Momma, look dis!"
Luke was grasping a handful of snow, holding it out to show me, and we watched as he brought it to his mouth.
"Luke," I warned, using my low Mommy tone.
He stopped, hand halfway to his mouth, tongue sticking out, eyes wide and staring, wondering if he dared to eat the dirty downtrodden snow and risk Mommy's wrath. He knew that voice. He knew that voice meant he was doing something naughty.
"Luke. No." I shook my head, eyebrows raised, lips pursed.
Luke eyes were still locked on mine.
"Don't do it, buddy," Edward stepped towards him and the kid giggled and bolted. "Oh I'm gonna get you," Edward growled playfully jogging after the squealing toddler, laughing peals of joy as he turned to stumble in my direction in the hope I would save him from Daddy.
I crouched down, holding my arms out, "Quick, c'mere." Luke toddled towards me, giggling all the while, Edward behind him. So I was in prime position to see Edward slip on some snow, his arms windmilling as his feet swept out from underneath him, landing on his ass with a groan.
Luke stopped and turned, "Oh!" startled to see Daddy suddenly lying on the ground. His mouth formed a perfect 'O' as he looked to me and pointed at Edward with his mitten-covered hand.
I couldn't help the snort of laughter that escaped me before I slapped my own hand to my mouth in an attempt to hold it in. "Oh…oh no…" I gasped between bouts of laughter, "L-Luke," I chuckled, "Go help Daddy."
Edward sat up, resting on his elbows as he gaped at me, "I can't believe you're laughing."
"I can't…" I wiped tears from my eyes as I fell from my crouched position onto the ground, "I can't be-believe you're not."
Edward shook his head at me. "You're literally on the floor laughing."
I cackled, "I can't b-breathe. Oh my god." I took a gulp of air trying to calm down only to burst into another round of laughter. "I'm crying!" I howled. "E-Edward! It was like a car-ha! It was like a cartoon." Oh good god I couldn't rein it in. "Y-you're face! You looked so surprised."
Edward laughed once, still staring at me, aghast.
I slapped the ground, "I'm dying."
"At least our son cares if I'm hurt." Edward grumbled with a roll of his eyes and a sheepish smile as Luke patted Edward's head with his hand.
"Your hat fell off and everything!"
"I'm good buddy," Edward smirked at me, "But you're Momma's crazy."
I let out a long sigh allowing myself to fall backwards, holding my now aching tummy. "Oh god, that was funny. Jeez, I'm exhausted." A few chuckles still escaped me and I heard a few of Edward's own.
I frowned and sat up quickly at the voice, looking around and suddenly wishing I hadn't.
Elizabeth Masen was stood in the empty playground wrapped in a long black coat, her leather gloved hands holding her purse and a couple of luxury shopping bags. She reminded me of Meryl Streep in that Prada movie. Hair perfect, make up perfect but her eyes were cold and her frozen face gave no expression.
When I looked to Edward my stomach dropped. Gone were bright eyes and the effortless smile of seconds before.
Edward jumped to his feet picking up Luke quickly as I swiftly got to my own feet. All traces of humour and peace from moments ago were gone and thick, sticky tension fell in its place.
"Mother." Edward muttered.
She never even glanced my way as I stood beside Edward.
"I was unaware you were home." She said stiffly.
"I'm not home." Edward's tone was clipped, his jaw tense and his free hand fisted tightly at his side. "I'm going home tomorrow morning."
"A phone call to tell us you were here would have been nice."
I had to actively stop my jaw for dropping. Was the woman delusional?
"So we could have a good old catch up?" Edward asked incredulously. "You made it clear to me that was something beyond reach when we last spoke."
The last time they had spoken Edward had informed her of our engagement six years ago. He had never told me the specifics I think an attempt to protect my feelings though I couldn't give two shits what his parents thought of me, it was Edward's feelings I had been concerned about.
It was then that Elizabeth Masen decided to grace me with a glance.
"Yes, well. I see you went ahead with it anyway."
That's right, bitch. I wanted to whip out my wedding band and shove it in her face.
"This is your grandson, by the way," Edward said nodding to Luke who was snuggled into Edward's shoulder staring at this cold, un-feeling woman.
But something flashed in her eyes when she looked to Luke before she dragged them away to look at Edward again. She darted a sly look to me before asking pointedly, "Are you sure?"
You fucking cow.
One glance and anyone in the world would know Luke was Edward's son. She was just saying it to be spiteful. And fuck I didn't even care if the intention was to imply I was sleeping around, I didn't care if she said outright I was slut. But I wouldn't have her saying shit like that because it was, at the very least, fucking disrespectful to Edward. It was nasty and the only people she was hurting were Edward and Luke. And no way in hell would I stand for it.
"You're an idiot." I stated.
I was sure very little shocked Elizabeth Masen and, I had to say, it wasn't a good look for her.
Edward wrapped an arm around my waist and pulled me tight to his side. "Don't worry about it, Bella, it's not worth it."
I shook my head, "I can't, Edward, I have to say this, I have to tell her, please let me." I looked up at him. It was a genuine request. This foul woman needed to hear what I had to say but if Edward would prefer I say nothing then I wouldn't.
Edward looked at me carefully for a moment, finding something in my eyes before the corner of his mouth quirked up into a very small smile and he murmured softly, "Let her have it."
That was all the consent I needed.
I stepped forward.
"You are a lot of things Mrs Masen, I'm sure many of those things have led you to be where you are at today but never, I'm sure, would anyone have ever had you pegged for a moron."
Her jaw dropped a little.
"I know you love him." I gestured behind me to Edward. "I know you do. There is not an ounce of doubt in my mind because I now know with certainty that there is nothing in this world stronger than a mothers love for her child. Edward is my world, he is my life and yet the love I have for him cannot compare to the love I feel for my son." I glanced behind me and smiled at him, "Sorry."
Though his smile was a little tight I knew it was genuine as his cheek rested atop of Luke's head. I turned back to his mother.
"You love Edward more than anything, so I cannot even begin to fathom why you've acted in the way that you have. The only thing I can come up with is that you genuinely have no idea the effect your actions have had on him." I frowned, honestly baffled. "Everything you've done has pushed him further and further away from you. Okay, the things you wanted for him didn't go to plan because they weren't things that he wanted, but instead of accepting the fact that unfortunately the life you had planned for him didn't pan out, instead of dealing with that and moving on you continued to do things and say things that have pushed him so far away there's now no turning back. I don't know if you do these things out of anger or spite because things didn't go your way but you're doing nothing but hurting him. You're hurting him. Not me. And I know you want your son back in your life, hell, I know by one single glance that you want your grandson in your life."
She looked like she was about to protest but I held my hand up.
"Mrs Masen, I saw the look in your eyes and nothing you can say to me will convince me otherwise. You love your son, you want to know your grandson but you have completely and royally fucked your chances due to sheer stupidity.
"Now, I can't speak for my husband and I don't want to put words into his mouth but compassion and forgiveness are in his nature because that's the way Carlisle and Esme raised him." She pursed her lips but said nothing. Yes, that was a dig at your lack of parenting. You aren't his mother. "I hope for Edward's sake you one day come to your senses but I also hope for Edward's sake he doesn't forgive you. I hope one day you look around your big empty house full of meaningless empty belongings and I hope you realise how little they are really worth and I hope you are filled with regret."
I inhaled deeply stepping back with a shake of my head. "What a fucking idiot."
I turned my back on Elizabeth Masen and took Edward's hand. "Let's go home."
"Home!" Luke grinned.
Edward smiled at his son's enthusiasm.
"Yes," I laughed. "Home."
Edward gazed at me with a look on his face I had never seen before, a small smile on his lips. "Home." He nodded, hooking his arm around my shoulders and I wrapped both of mine around his waist.
We left her standing in the playground. We didn't look back.
I blink, "Sorry, baby?"
"Where's Daddy's Mommy now?"
I narrowed my eyes in thought. "Just because you have had a baby in your tummy doesn't make you a Mommy." I wiped some ice cream from his cheek, "What things do you like doing with Mommy?"
"Hmm," Luke tilted his head, "I like when we have ice cream nights."
I smiled, "Ice cream nights are the best," I licked my lips and Luke giggled. "What else?"
"I like when we play Pirates and when you come and watch me play baseball with Daddy." He now had a spoonful of sprinkles and was picking them off and eating them one by one. "And I like when we sometimes sneak downstairs when we're 'apposed to be sleeping and Daddy and Tia are sleeping and we eat the peanut butter cookies and watch Toy Story."
The last one had been happening since my cravings when I was pregnant with Tia and Luke had woken up in the middle of the night to see me secretly stuffing my face with cookies. It had become somewhat of a tradition when Luke couldn't sleep.
"See all those things is what makes a good Mommy, it's not just because you once had a baby in your tummy, it's about how good you take care of your baby when they are out of your tummy and start growing." I explained.
"Nana isn't Daddy's Tummy Mommy, she's Daddy's really good Mommy." Luke summarised.
I grinned, "You got it."
"I'm glad you're my Tummy Mommy and my really good Mommy."
I leaned over to press a big smooch to his cheek, "Me too."
Luke slipped off his chair to crawl onto my lap. He looked up at me wide eyed. "Nana's your really good Mommy too, isn't she?"
I smiled softly, my boy was too smart. "Yes, she is."
Luke wrapped his arms around my neck, snuggling into my shoulder. I kissed his head, swaying us gently side to side enjoying the cuddle.
I'm not sure how long we sat there lost in our own world but it was a surprise when I felt the kiss to my cheek.
"Well isn't this a beautiful picture."
"Daddy!" Luke immediately reached up and he was in Edward arms.
"Hey, buddy. You been good for Mom?"
"Uh-huh. She's my Tummy Mommy."
Edward looked to me, bewildered. "Is that so?"
I laughed, "Long story."
"Know what else she is?" Edward asked Luke.
"She's a yummy Mommy." Edward wiggled his eyebrows and Luke laughed loudly.
I rolled my eyes. "Luke, don't you have something to show Daddy before bed?"
"Yes!" He scrambled to get down. "I'll go get it." We heard him clambering up the stairs and Edward turned to take my hand, pulling me to stand.
"How is yummy Mommy today?" He asked, lowering a hand to stroke over my very small bump.
"She's good." I sighed scratching my hands through his hair where they were looped behind his head. "Little nauseous this morning but it passed quickly."
"Mmm, that's good." Edward hummed and my eyes fluttered shut of their own accord as he ran his nose along my jaw, pressing a kiss to that spot just under my ear where he knew made me weak at the knees.
I hissed when the hand at the small of my back pulled me tighter to him and I felt the tingle and the heat quickly pool. "God, I missed you this weekend."
His new book had launched a couple of weeks ago and he'd been gone for a book signing.
"Bella," Edward murmured, "you have no idea. Knowing you were at home waiting for me, knowing this stage of pregnancy always has you feeling so…" he sucked in a breath kissing along my jaw the other side, "desperate for my touch, it killed me being away from you."
"Edward," I breathed as he trailed his nose down mine seconds away from the touch of our lips-
"Damn." Edward sighed. I opened my eyes to see him looking at me. He grinned before pressing a soft sweet kiss, full of promise, to my mouth. "Later." He warned and pulled away from me just in time to see Luke run into the kitchen.
"Is that a medal?" Edward grinned lifting Luke to his hip so he could get a closer look at the award swinging from his neck. "Luke, is this a gold medal?"
"Yep," Luke's smile was beaming with pride as he watched his Dad lift the medal from his chest for a closer look.
"You came first?"
"Yep. I swimmed the fastest."
"Kiddo, I'm so proud of you, that's so great. I'm sorry I couldn't see it."
"That's okay," Luke soothed, "Mommy got it on camera so we could show you."
"I can't wait to watch it."
"Can we watch it now?" Luke pleaded.
I glanced at the clock. "'Fraid not. Bedtime for you, mister."
"Ohhh," he groused, frowning at me.
"Hey, none of that," Edward said, "sounds like you had a good day today let's not ruin it."
Luke huffed, glaring at the medal he was fiddling with.
"We'll watch it tomorrow morning with pancakes, yes?"
Luke nodded eagerly.
"Go on, go see if you can dressed in your pyjamas before the big hand is on the ten." Edward encouraged. Luke looked to the clock, he had about two minutes. He wiggled to get down with a laugh, running from the room.
Edward turned to me with a teasing smile, pulling me towards him with his hands on my hips. "How about you go see if you can get undressed before the big hand is on the ten."
I shook my head with a smile, pushing him away, "Go tuck your son into bed. He missed you." I softened his dismissal with a kiss. "Then we'll see about getting undressed."
He sighed longingly before heading for the door. "Where's Bear by the way?" He asked over his shoulder as I resumed the scrubbing of the saucepan I had previously given up on.
"Where do you think?" I scoffed, "Guarding the baby."
The dog had been the same with Luke when he was small. We'd carry the baby to bed and Bear would follow, curling up beside the crib and wouldn't leave until morning.
"You know we're not gonna be able to call Tia that for much longer." Edward said, "She's pretty much running circles around us now and what with the bun in the oven."
I scowled at him over my shoulder, "They will all always be my babies."
"Opps, poked Mama Bear." Edward smirked, making a break for it when Luke called from upstairs.
"Daddy I did it!"
"Better go before he wakes Tia."
Edward found me a little later in the tub, the room dimly lit with candles as I soaked in bubbles.
I opened my eyes to find him sitting on the floor, arm resting on the edge of the bath, chin resting on his arm.
He smiled. "You're beautiful, you know that?"
"You're cheesy, you know that?"
"Bella," he shook his head, "you know you love the cheese."
I grinned, allowing myself to be drawn into old memories of card games and long days spent in bed in a small little house in a small little town that felt so far away.
"We've come so far," Edward breathed tucking a strand of hair behind my ear. "I'm so sorry I forgot. My manager just booked it and I agreed without thinking. I was going to plan something special for this weekend, have Carlisle and Esme look after the kids but-"
I shushed him with my fingertips to his lips. "Stop. Edward this is our life and life gets in the way sometimes. This evening, downstairs eating ice cream with Luke, Luke showing off his medal to you, that's what's special to me. That's what life is about, it's the life I always wanted and you've given that to me. I couldn't think of a better way to spend the evening."
Edward smiled, kissing my hand and winked, "The night is still young."
He trailed his hand in the water coming to rest on my bare belly, his thumb stroking circles. He frowned curiously. "What was with the Tummy Mommy thing?"
"Oh. Luke was asking questions."
"Not the dreaded question?"
I laughed, "No, thank god." I took a deep breath, "He was asking if the baby would look like you or me which led onto the topic of if Alice looks like Nana why doesn't Daddy look like Pops."
"Ah." Edward frowned, "What did you tell him?"
So I told Edward my explanation and how I sneakily avoided the 'Where's Daddy's Mommy' question.
Edward smiled at me warmly when I finished, "You're such a good mom."
He seemed distracted, his hand absently running trails across my leg under the water.
"You okay?" I asked softly, bringing my own hand to his cheek.
"I'm okay," he promised, "Just thinking."
He paused before asking, "If Renee reached out do you think you would give her a chance?"
I thought carefully before answering. "I go back and forth, especially since having the kids. If we did anything to upset them I would really like to think they would be able to accept an apology and forgive us… but then, I just can't imagine," I shook my head, "I can't stand the thought of ever doing anything to them like what Renee did to me. And then I think if I ever did anything like that, never in a million years would I want them to forgive me because how could I ever even forgive myself." I swallowed, not allowing myself to tear up at the mere thought. "And then there's what Victoria said to me."
Edward eyes widened, "What? When?"
"Before we left Forks."
He relaxed again and I ran a hand through his hair.
"She told me to leave with you, she said to leave her and Charlie and Renee, to leave them all behind and she told me not to look back. And I think that's the best thing she ever did for me."
Edward nodded slowly.
"That day we saw her in Chicago," I said and Edward looked up, "The day we saw your mother. Why did you let me have at her?"
He smiled, "Because I looked in your eyes and I saw the same need I had felt when I told Renee what I thought of her. The need to protect what was mine."
I watched as his eyes darkened and the mood changed rapidly.
"And it was one of sexiest things I've ever seen in my life." He moved closer, the hand aimlessly trailing now moved with precision and purpose. "Seeing you so in control, so fierce and fired up. God it was powerful, Bella. It makes me so hard thinking about it."
"Edward," I moaned when his hand reached my pussy. "Please."
I gripped my sides of the bath tightly, panting harshly as he brought me closer and closer to the edge. My mouth gasped open, eyes clenched shut.
His mouth was at my ear. "Come for me, baby."
That was all it took.
Next thing I knew Edward was slipping a silk nightie over my head where I sat on the edge of the bed.
I watched him pull his shirt off and his hands went to the buckle of hit belt.
I licked my lips.
It was clear his intention were to get ready for bed. My intentions were different.
"Bella!" He gasped when I tugged on his briefs bringing him closer and swiped a lick at the 'V' of his hips. "Shit. Baby, it's okay. You passed out you g-gotta… go…ugh…to bed."
No way. I was getting too much enjoyment out of the pleasure on his face, his heavy hooded eyes as he stared down at me, the heaving of his chest as I sucked.
"Fuck, baby I fucking love you," he grit out, his hips ever so slightly thrusting, one hand cupping the side of my face the other teasing my nipple through the silk.
It didn't take too long, his tension having built up all weekend and what can I say, I still got it.
He knelt down and was breathing heavily as he kissed me thoroughly.
I smiled, "Feel good?"
He grinned still a little breathless, "So good."
Moments later, and not a second sooner thank god because Edward has just pulled his briefs over his ass, there was a soft knock on the bedroom door.
"Come in, baby," my voice was a little strangled.
The door opened and Luke stood in his pyjamas, Tia's little hand clutched in his, her free hand rubbing her eyes tiredly and Bear stood behind them, wagging his tail.
"Tia had a bad dream."
Looked to me like my little boy was using his little sister as an excuse and had pulled her out of bed.
"Da." She reached for Edward, spotting him for the first time since Friday.
"Hey there Princess," he reached for her as Luke ran and jumped into bed beside me. "Did your brother wake you up?" He pressed kisses to her face before she slumped in his arms, burying her face in his neck, his hair fisted in her little pudgy hands.
Luke curled up into my side while Edward climbed into the other side of the bed with Tia.
She grizzled a little and I reached over to rub her back where she lay on top of Edward's chest.
"What was Tia's bad dream about?" I asked Luke softly.
"Zombies," he whispered.
I was going to kill Seth. How many times had I told him, whether it was supposed to be a spoof or not, Shaun of Dead of was not appropriate for a four year old.
"Did you tell Tia zombies aren't real so they'll never be able to hurt her?"
Bear chose that moment to let out a soft bark.
Luke sat up and to see him and Tia's head lifted from Edward chest.
"Can he sleep with us too?" Luke asked, looking to Edward with puppy dog eyes. "Please, Daddy."
I turned my puppy eyes to Edward, "Yeah. Please, Daddy."
Edward growled and Tia giggled at the noise. But Luke and I knew it was a growl of defeat.
"Bear! Up!" Luke patted the bed and Bear jumped, sniffing at Tia's curls and she squealed when his wet nose caught her cheek.
Luke laughed, petting the dog before Bear danced in circles, finally settling at Luke's feet. I scratched his head before pressing a kiss to Luke's who was snuggling next to me, closing his eyes.
When I looked over Tia was already drowsing and Edward was smiling at me, "Still the best way to spend the evening?" he asked, cramped as we were in the bed with two kids and a dog.
I beamed, "Wouldn't change it for the world."
"Happy anniversary, Bella." Edward whispered.
"Happy Anniversary, Edward."