Just a little Christmas O/S. Fluffy and pointless, but hopefully enjoyable!
Many thanks and lots of love and yummy sugar cookies to Lolo84 for pre-reading! She is rocking my Christmas stocking! Any mistakes you might find are all mine.
I don't own anything recognizable, but I might be willing to make a deal on a hard-core teething 15 month old in my possession. ;)
Check out Michael Buble's cover of All I Want for Christmas and James Taylor/Natalie Cole's cover of Baby, It's Cold Outside for how I imagine them to be sung in this story.
I walked down the back hallway of the MTV Los Angeles studio while humming Christmas carols under my breath. I nodded and gave polite smiles to the others I passed, until I reached the door with the name Edward Cullen scrawled in dry erase marker across the star-shaped door tag. I pushed it open with one hand and set my box down on the table just inside.
I scanned around to make sure the room was set up appropriately.
Temperature set to 72 degrees: Check.
Five non-chilled Dasani bottled waters: Check.
iPod docking station: Check.
Bowl full of Oh Henry! candy bars: Check.
Multi-colored Christmas lights hanging around the mirror: Check (although these were to be in his dressing room only during the month of December).
Couch with three throw pillows: Check, check, and check!
Once I was satisfied with the arrangement of everything, I quickly began removing the items from my box.
I placed the plate of homemade, Christmas cut-out sugar cookies next to the chocolate bars. Then I plugged in my iPod with Edward's latest favorite playlist – a compilation of Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, and Nat King Cole doing covers of Christmas songs, and Edward's custom musician monitor earpieces. My phone beeped and I found a new text from Edward saying he and Emmett had just arrived and hoped I was here, too. I resisted the urge to roll my eyes. He'd never arrived anywhere before me, and if I valued my coveted job as his personal assistant, he never would. It was my mission to make sure he was happy at all times, and I couldn't accomplish that without making everything perfect before he had the chance to realize it wasn't.
I heard Emmett's boisterous laughter preceding their arrival, and I grinned when the door opened and they walked in. As always, my heart stuttered in my chest at the beautifully sexy sight of Edward. I suppressed the ever-constant urge to profess my undying love and desire to make a thousand babies with him, as he glanced around and shook his head in amusement.
"I can't believe the crap people are willing to do to keep celebrities happy," he chuckled. "I'm not even going to touch most of this stuff."
I punched him on the arm teasingly. "Then quit making my life so difficult by demanding stupid shit every time you have an engagement. I'm the one who has to ensure they do it right. You're lucky this wasn't scheduled as some super early morning, aired-live-across-the-nation performance so I didn't have to drag myself in here at the crack of dawn to check everything first."
"Sorry, B," he said with a sheepish smile.
"No, you aren't," I retorted with a lady-like snort.
"Oh, cookies!" Emmett exclaimed behind us and Edward spun on his heel and leveled him with a death stare.
"Touch my Bella cookies and die!"
"Like you could take me. I'm your bodyguard. You pay me to keep you safe, remember?" Emmett reached his hand out and I swear I heard Edward growl in warning.
"Oh, stop it, you big baby," I chastised and reached into my box again. I pulled out a bag with more cookies and held it out. "Here, Emmett. I knew this one wasn't going to share, so I set some aside for you," I said with a nod in Edward's direction.
Emmett's smile was so big, I thought his face was going to crack. "Thanks, Jingle Bells! You're the best personal assistant ever! E, if you ever get rid of her I'm going to break your legs."
Edward clutched at his chest mockingly. "Get rid of Bella! That's blasphemy! How could I ever do something like that? She's the mastermind of my entire life, I'm pretty sure I'd literally die if she wasn't around."
"Ha ha ha. You two are sooo funny," I sarcastically retorted. "Edward, time for make-up and please, for the love of God, don't let them try to "fix" your hair. Your crazy, sex-hair is all natural and every time someone thinks they can improve it, it's disastrous. Then, head over to get mic'd and do a quick sound check."
He saluted me with a smirk. "Sir, yes, sir!"
This time I did roll my eyes. "You know the drill for today, right? Talk up the movie, answer a couple interview questions, sing your song, make the screaming tween fangirls and creepy mothers swoon at your feet, and get the heck off the set. It's December 23rd and I want to get this done so I don't have to deal with your prima donna ass for a whole week." I bounced on my toes with a smile and he laughed at my cheekiness.
I was looking forward to having my dad come down for the first time since I'd moved to LA three years ago and spend Christmas with me. I'd been the one to travel for all of our other visits and I couldn't wait to finally show him the life I'd built here. It was modest, but mine and I really loved it. Although, I pretended to be excited to have a week off, on the inside I was weeping at being denied Edward's presence for that long.
I hadn't planned on falling for my boss, but when you work for the 'Sexiest Man Alive' and he had a killer personality, it was impossible not to. He and I clicked the first time we met. It was back when I was working as the assistant's assistant for Alice Whitlock, of the Ali and Jazz Band, and he had wooed me into his employment. In reality, it hadn't been that difficult and we had become quite close friends over the past year and a half.
Of course, I hid my pathetic lovesickness for him as best I could. I mean, he's Edward freaking Cullen! What the hell would he want with boring Isabella Swan? Why would he choose a no name personal assistant for a girlfriend when he was one of the biggest celebrities out there? He could pick from any model, actress, or music star in the world!
I stared in horror as Edward and Emmett approached me in the wings of the stage. He looked like sex on legs in dark, distressed jeans and a rich, deep green sweater that made his matching green eyes pop. It was the monstrosity covering his wild, tousled hair that had me shocked. "What is on your head?" I exclaimed.
"A Santa hat," Emmett announced. "It's festive!"
"No. No, no, no, no, no! You cannot cover up the hair. Your hair is what makes women everywhere have to change their panties at the sight of you. Take it off now," I demanded.
Edward cocked an eyebrow. "Women everywhere, huh? Including you, Bella?"
"You wish. I'm immune to your voodoo. Hat. Off. Now."
Emmett pouted. "I gave it to him to be Christmas-y."
I sighed. "It's a lovely gesture, Emmett, but you can't cover the hair. It's 'The Hair!'" I lifted up on my tiptoes and yanked at the top of Edward's sweater to make him bend down to pull the Santa hat off. I dropped it onto the table by me and picked up the red and white striped scarf lying there. I draped it around his neck so it hung down his chest. "There. Christmas-y without being overly so, or ruining your image by covering your crazy mop."
He looked down and examined it. "This is really nice, Bella. Where did you find it?"
"No where special," I mumbled and tried to tamp down on my blush. Unfortunately, it didn't go unnoticed.
"Did you make this?" he asked in awe.
"It wasn't a big deal. Super easy. It's your present, so just say thank you and focus on the plug you're about to do."
Edward bent and kissed my cheek, whispering "Thank you, Bella," in my ear.
I felt hot all over, and my heart rate picked up as I stared into his eyes. "You're welcome. Merry Christmas, Edward."
He was about to respond, but we were interrupted by a set hand announcing the 30 second mark.
"Are you all psyched to greet our guest today?" the drop-dead gorgeous Rosalie Hale asked into her microphone. The screaming that followed was earsplitting. I cringed slightly and put in my own ear monitor so I didn't miss any instructions from the crew. "Come on out, Edward!" she shouted over the din.
"That's your cue," I said and swatted his behind lightly. I wished I could let my hand linger, but that was not my lot.
He laughed and mouthed, "I'll get you back," as he walked out on the stage. Rosalie hugged him like they were old friends and began grilling him on his movie debut. They chatted back and forth while the audience ate it up. Edward was nothing if not charismatic and he oozed sex appeal.
"So, Edward, tell us about your love life," she slyly transitioned. "You're known in Hollywood as a serial monogamist, but you've been single for quite some time now. You haven't been linked with anyone since your break-up with Lauren Mallory. It's been, what? Over a year?"
Four-hundred thirty-seven days to be exact, but who was counting? I definitely had been relieved when Edward had dumped the prissy, uber-bitchy, movie star diva he had been dating when I first started working with him.
I could practically see girls melt as he flashed his mega-watt smile to the crowd. "Yes, that's about how long it's been. I do have my eye on someone, but I'm waiting for the right moment."
The way girls in the audience squealed over that tidbit of information, you'd think he was talking about them personally. I, on the other hand, felt like I'd been punched in the gut. It was hard to breathe and I locked my muscles to keep from rubbing at the painful, empty spot where my heart had been just moments ago.
"OMG, Edward! That's quite the announcement to make on television, tell us more. The fans are salivating over that morsel!" Rosalie pressed.
He shook his head. "I'm sure the media will let you know when it happens. If it happens, I should say. I'm still not sure how she'll react, but I would love to have someone to kiss at midnight for New Year's. We'll have to see."
She gave a sultry laugh and placed a hand on his bicep flirtatiously. "Edward, you were named 'Sexiest Man Alive.' I don't think there's a woman in the world who wouldn't want you keeping her warm this winter."
I kept flipping through the possibilities of whom he was talking about. There were two women at the top of my list. Tanya Denali, the pop princess singer he'd collaborated with on his last album before doing the Christmas one he'd just released at the beginning of the month. It could also be Jessica Stanley, his co-star from the movie. They had great on-set chemistry and she definitely made it known she wouldn't say no to any offer from him.
"I sure hope so. I kind of think this girl could be the one, you know? But hey, this isn't why I'm here. Who wants me to sing?"
The one?! Holy fuck, my life was just destroyed and my heart ripped out and stomped all over.
"Okay, fine," Rosalie huffed in frustration. "I guess we'll just have to wait and see." Edward smiled and nodded. "I think everyone in America has a copy of your brand new Christmas album and would love to hear you play a little something for us."
Cheering ensued again and he made his way over to the grand piano that had been set up for him. Edward sat down and adjusted the mic closer to his mouth before resting his fingers on the keys. As he started to play, I felt myself melt along with every other female, gay male, and a couple straight ones in the vicinity. Usually I hated the song All I Want for Christmas, but Edward's simple, slow version was my favorite of his carols. It was sweet, beautiful, and romantic.
He kept his eyes closed for most of the song, only occasionally flashing a smile to the camera. I looked down as I blinked back tears and fought the despair filling me that he was obviously thinking of his mystery girl. As he reached the last lines of the song, I forced my head up and smiled in encouragement.
His eyes met mine and I gasped at the depth of emotion there. For a moment it was like just the two of us existed, until he winked and gave me a goofy smile when he stood up and acknowledged the applause.
"Wow, Edward! That was certainly a yummy Christmas treat to give all of our viewers."
"Thanks, Rosalie. You know, do we have time for just one more song?" he asked.
"Of course! For you, we always have time," she answered.
"Great! Now, I know there has been lots of speculation about this Christmas duet with an unnamed female, but she's here with me today." Edward gave me a devious smile and I felt my stomach turn to lead. He wasn't doing what I thought he was doing. Edward wouldn't do that to me.
"I'm going to need you all to cheer as loudly as you can to convince her to come out because she's quite shy, okay?" The answering screams were astounding and I felt a hard shove from behind. I stumbled out a few feet on stage and looked back in terror at Emmett. "Everyone, meet Miss Isabella Swan!" Edward announced and grabbed my hand to tug me out further.
"I'm going to kill you," I muttered and he laughed. Someone stepped out and handed me an extra microphone, which I took in shock.
"Bella is actually my personal assistant," he told the audience.
"Ex-assistant," I quipped.
"Oh, come on. You know you love me." Edward slung one arm over my shoulders.
"I love you when you sign my paychecks. You can put the last one in the mail. I quit."
"That's okay, I'm going to get you a record deal anyway. Your voice is too beautiful not to share. You loved singing with me," he mischievously teased.
"Because you're a con-artist who told me he just needed my help to practice and recorded without telling me."
He simply laughed and cued the band to start playing. At my murderous glare, he dipped down to whisper in my ear. "Come on, Bella. Keep eye contact with me and pretend no one else is here. You and me, singing and having fun." He gently lifted my microphone up to my mouth and nodded encouragingly.
I swallowed my fear and anxiety down and opened my mouth to sing with him. I ignored everyone around us as much as possible and allowed Edward's infectious playfulness to overcome my mood. By the end of our Baby, It's Cold Outside duet, we were dancing around and acting out the back and forth of the song the way we had when he had secretly taped us. It was fun and light-hearted and we weren't the only ones who enjoyed it. From the response around us, it appeared our performance had been well received, to say the least. I couldn't help but forgive Edward for tricking me into singing with him…almost.
"Who wants Edward's personal cell phone number?" I gleefully shouted into my mic and the resounding noise was deafening. "323-555-"
Edward clamped his hand over my mouth and waved, as he dragged both of us off stage to the good-natured booing of the audience.
"So, I'll see you just after the New Year?" Edward asked as I finished packing up my things after the show wrapped. "Sure you don't want to come with me to my family's for Christmas?"
I nodded. "I'll be fine. My dad is visiting, I can't wait to see him and show him around! He hasn't been down before, hard to take off work when you're police chief."
He smiled at me softly. "Okay. Well, Merry Christmas, Bella."
"Merry Christmas, Edward," I answered in the same tone. "Oh, your present!" I plucked the wrapped gift up and handed it to him.
"What about my scarf?"
"That was just part of it. This is the rest." I shrugged and avoided eye contact.
He tore the paper to reveal the book inside. "Bella, this is…amazing," he said in a hushed voice.
Happiness warmed me as he examined the first edition, author signed copy of All Quiet on the Western Front. His favorite book.
"Thank you, I don't even have words."
I bit my lip against a grin. "You're welcome. I'm glad you like it."
He swept me into a tight hug and I reveled in the feel of being in his arms. I pressed my nose into his neck and inhaled his delicious, woodsy, Edward scent. As he pulled back, he brushed his lips across my cheek again.
"You're the best, Bella." I blushed at his words and ducked my head slightly. "Okay, I'll see you soon. Have a great Christmas and New Year!" He stepped back and I nodded.
"Yeah, you too. Merry Christmas and happy New Year."
We parted ways and I couldn't help but feel a little dejected he hadn't gotten me anything. Even last year, when I'd only been working for him for a few months he had bought me a fabulous spa bath set in this heavenly cherry blossom scent. As I walked out to my car I refused to cry. I would not perseverate on how Edward was likely going to have a girlfriend, the woman he pictured himself with forever, the next time I saw him. Lucky fucking bitch. If I let this news drag me down, I might feel compelled to go play in traffic.
I tried to focus on the fun it would be to have my dad in town and how happy my apartment looked all decorated for Christmas. I hadn't really done much in prior years, but I wanted to make it special for my dad.
My phone rang when I reached my car and I fished it out of my pocket to see my dad's name on the screen.
"Hey, dad! How are you? I'm so excited to see you tomorrow!"
"Hi, Bells. I'm…good. It's so nice to hear your voice, baby." He paused and the tone of his voice made me do the same.
"What's up, Dad?"
"Listen, Bella. I really hate to do this because I know you were looking forward to it and so was I, but I need to stay around here for the holidays. Tyler Crowley's wife is on bed rest and he needs to take time to help with their three-year-old since she can't. All the other guys have families with young kids, too, and I'd feel bad making one of them miss out. I'm so sorry to do this on such short notice."
I cleared my voice so he wouldn't hear the tears threatening to fall. "Sure, Dad. I understand. Duty calls, right? No big deal, I'll talk to Edward to see if I can maybe take a couple days off in January to come visit. We can have Christmas then, okay?"
"That sounds great, sweetheart. I'm glad you're all right with this. I'm going to miss you though, kiddo."
"Me, too. Hey, I'm sure you have work to do with Tyler being out. I'll call you on Christmas."
"Perfect. Talk to you then. Love you, Bella," he added.
"Love you, too, Dad," I forced out and ended the call. I climbed into my car and let the tears flow as I drove home to my empty apartment and now empty Christmas. FML.
Christmas Eve dawned bright and sunny with an expected high of 73 degrees. I forced myself to get up and go through my regular routine so I didn't wallow in the pit of despair that was beckoning to me. I went for my two mile run, showered, and then decided to run a couple errands including mailing my dad's Christmas gifts so they weren't ridiculously late. As I walked home, I opted to stop by Starbucks for a treat and ran into Edwards mother, Esme.
"Bella, hello! Merry Christmas!" she happily greeted me. Esme has always joked that I was practically a daughter to her because more often than not, I was the one answering his phone and talking to her.
"Merry Christmas, Esme. What brings you to this neck of the woods?" While Edward and I both lived in Hollywood, his home in a slightly more upscale neighborhood than mine, his parents resided in Santa Monica. Not exactly around the corner.
"Oh, you know a mother's work is never done," she replied with a wave of her hand. "There's a boutique here that I needed to pick up a package from and nothing like waiting until the last minute. Did you like the gift I sent, my dear?"
"Yes, thank you! It's a beautiful dress." Thank God I'd worn the slightly shimmery, sapphire blue sweater dress with my tall, black boots yesterday when I'd been thrown on air.
"You looked absolutely lovely in it. I was watching," she said with a sly wink. "You and Edward were so cute together!"
I forced out a laugh in spite of my stomach clenching at the memories. "He's a great guy. Makes working for him easy."
She hummed in agreement. "I should run. Christmas Eve dinner won't cook itself. Are you sure you and your father won't join us? You're more than welcome."
My heart fell at the reminder of my dad. "Actually, something came up at work and he can't make it."
"Then you have to come!"
"No, I'm fine. Really. Looking forward to a nice, quiet night at home. I don't have many of those."
"I insist you at least come over for Christmas brunch. I won't allow you to spend the day alone." She leveled me with what could only be described as 'The Mom Look.'
"Okay, but only if you're sure it won't be an inconvenience. After all, Edward might bring his mystery girl. I don't want to be a fifth wheel."
She brushed me off. "If he knows what's good for him, he'll finally fess up about his feelings. He's been pining over her for a year! But you must come regardless; you're practically family. I won't take no for an answer."
"Alright," I relented, reeling from the news that she knew who Edward wanted.
"Wonderful! We'll see you tomorrow!" She hugged me tightly before we went our separate ways.
As much as I tried, I couldn't hold my depression back for the entire day and by the time the sky darkened I was a crying, snotting mess. I had my ratty yoga pants and an old t-shirt on, my hair thrown haphazardly up in a bun, and not one iota of make-up on. I was watching cheesy, romantic Christmas movies on Lifetime and eating ice cream straight out of the carton while tears streamed down my cheeks.
I'd realized that I'd been hiding behind the fact that Edward was my boss so I wouldn't have to face his rejection by letting him know how I truly felt. Granted, there was no reason he would ever want me when he could literally have any woman in the world, but at least I would know that he knew. And then I'd need to find a new job when things ended up super awkward.
At least I could try to move on and perhaps even get laid for once. It had been a long, four year dry spell since my last boyfriend and I was beginning to worry I might never have sex again. Alone, alone, alone. I was going to end up a sad and lonely spinster. I should just adopt twelve cats and get it over with. Except I hate cats. Maybe bunnies instead?
Wait, what? No.
Suddenly, I was disgusted with myself. This was stupid and pathetic. I was crying over a man who only thought of me as his employee. I could find a guy out there who would appreciate me for more. I was loveable, dammit! The girl-next-door type was who guys wanted to take home to their mothers and have babies with, right? That was me to a T. I just had to actually be open to meeting someone.
I leaped up from my couch, dropping my carton on the coffee table. "I'm a freaking catch! Any guy would be lucky to have me!" I shouted indignantly and stomped my foot for added emphasis. I yelled out my frustration and threw my arms in the air. "Gaaahhhhhhh!"
A loud knock on my door startled me and I jumped. "One sec," I called. I grumbled under my breath as I walked over and open the door.
"Edward!" I stated in a surprised voice. "What…what are you doing here? Did you need something? Have I missed a call?"
"Bella, calm down. You didn't miss anything. Are you alright? I heard you screaming and…" his voice trailed off as he ran his eyes over my appearance.
"Oh, shit. I look like shit. I was just…um, I'll be right back, okay?" I looked like hell and here was the man I loved with a fierceness I'd never imagined possible. "I at least need a bra on," I muttered softly, but obviously not quiet enough as Edward's eyes went wide as saucers.
Heat bloomed from the top of my head all the way down to my toes.
"Bella," he stopped me. "I didn't get to give you my present earlier. And I talked to my mom and when she told me your dad didn't come down, I wanted to check in. I was worried about you."
I turned into a puddle of goo on the inside at his display of concern. "It's…I'm fine. I was a little sad earlier, but I'm better now."
His expression told me he wasn't buying it, but luckily he let the topic drop. He brought one hand around from behind his back to reveal a small green and gold wrapped gift. "Merry Christmas, Bella. This is for you."
I smiled gently; happiness filling my soul that he hadn't forgotten me after all. I ripped through the paper and lifted the small cover off the box. I gasped at the sight of a gorgeous silver bracelet with a small heart-shaped crystal charm.
"Edward, it's beautiful, "I breathed in awe. I lightly traced my fingertips over it and grinned at him. "Thank you."
"Anything for my favorite girl," he laughed nervously. "This is also for you." He held up a bunch of long stems with slightly curved leaves and small bunches of milky-white balls.
"Mistletoe?" I asked with tears shimmering in my eyes and hope dancing in my heart.
"Yeah," he whispered and gently cupped my face with his free hand while holding the bouquet over our heads. He pressed his mouth to mine and my feelings snapped inside. I kissed him back with wild abandon and gripped his shirt to pull him closer. I heard the mistletoe thump on the ground and then Edward's arms were around me and holding me tightly as his lips and tongue melded with my own. He tasted like mint and drugged my every sense.
"Edward?" I gasped when we broke apart. My eyes searched his in bewilderment at what had just transpired between us.
"You're her. My mystery girl." He brought both hands up to cradle my cheeks. "I'm tired of being too scared to lose you and hiding my true feelings. I love you, Bella. I have for over a year. I don't want to deny it anymore." I stared at him wide-eyed and gaping from his revelation. "Say something, baby," he pleaded with me.
I attacked him again. I threw my arms around his neck and practically shoved my tongue down his throat. "I love you, too, Edward," I told him when we were forced to come up for air. A rumbling sound came from him and he pushed us into my apartment and kicked the door shut before spinning around and pressing me up against it. He kissed me like a man dying, and caressed his hands along the sides of my body. Desire exploded through me and I panted as he trailed kisses along my throat and behind my ear.
Edward cupped my ass, lifting me up and I wrapped my legs around his waist. He stumbled his way into my bedroom and tumbled both of us on the bed. His fingers threaded into my hair to release it from my bun. He sucked lightly at my pulse point and I moaned softly.
"God, Bella. You make me crazy," he spoke into my skin. "So gorgeous and sweet and sort of shy." I instinctively bucked my hips against his when he settled between my thighs and he groaned. "With that little feisty side that pops up unexpectedly."
His mouth found mine again and I lost myself in the sensation of his body pressing into mine, and his taste on my tongue. It wasn't until Edward's hands started to push my shirt up that I tensed.
"What is it, baby?" he asked with a furrowed brow.
"I just, um…it's that I don't-"
"Oh, crap. I didn't even think about bringing condoms. We don't have to, I mean, we can wait. We shouldn't move too fast anyway." He was so cute when he rambled nervously, but the boy had no idea what was wrong.
"No! That's not what I meant. Well, actually I don't have condoms either because…I haven't needed them. But I'm on the pill and I'm clean. I'm pretty sure you are, too. I'd probably know." I stopped, suddenly feeling awkward and embarrassed.
He lifted one side of his mouth in a half smile. "Yes, you would. You know me better than I do. Besides, I wouldn't mind if I accidentally knocked you up. It's part of my master plan eventually." I gasped at his blunt admission and my heart started racing with excitement. Edward brushed his lips across mine. "So if that's not the problem, why did you freeze up?"
How the hell did I put this? "Because I'm fat." His stunned expression would have been comical if I hadn't been so nervous. "Well, not really fat, but being 5' 4" and 145 pounds in LA is equivalent to weighing 500. I don't look like the girls you're used to."
There was a softness in his eyes when he looked at me as I spoke. "Bella, you're right that you don't look like them. You are far and way more beautiful than any woman here. They are all fake and starve themselves to fit some ridiculous image and it's not pretty." He stroked his fingers down my cheek to the base of my neck. "You are natural and alluring and breathtaking. Not to mention so fucking sexy. I know what you look like; you are the most beautiful woman I've ever laid eyes on. If you aren't ready we can wait, but I can promise you when we do make love seeing you naked and bared for me is only going to make my feelings stronger. I swear I will never stop thinking you are stunningly exquisite."
I blinked rapidly at the stinging in my eyes. I refused to cry and ruin the mood between us. Inhaling deeply, I pulled my shirt up and over my head and let it fall to the floor. Any lingering doubts I had about what Edward would think of my body were blown away by his hungry and possessive look.
"So beautiful," he whispered reverently and pulled his own shirt off. Wanton, needy whimpers escaped me as he slowly and lingeringly removed the rest of our clothes. His lips traveled along my body, but always returned to my mouth to steal kiss after kiss.
I burned with need and longing, aching and wet between my thighs. I threw my head back and cried out when his fingers delved into my curls to seek out the source of my heat. Tortuously, slowly, he slid first one and then two digits inside me while his thumb teased and rubbed my bundle of nerves that sent licks of fire low in my belly.
"Please, Edward," I begged unabashedly. "Make love to me, baby. I want to feel you inside me, claiming me as your own."
"Bella," he growled and kissed me hard. I felt his erection positioned right where I wanted him most. He pulled back slightly and stared into my eyes. "I love you, Isabella, and I always will. You're who I want to spend my life with, I know this with every fiber of my being."
I wasn't able to hold back my tears this time, but I smiled wide to reassure him. "I love you, too, Edward. I have for so long and was too afraid to hope that you would return my feelings. I'm never going to stop loving you and I always want to be with you, too."
He lowered his mouth to mine as he slowly pressed into me. I felt stretched and filled completely and in the most delicious way. Unhurriedly, we moved in sync as he pumped in and out of me. Each time he thrust inside, Edward made sure to grind his hips against my clit, sending me spiraling closer to heaven every time.
"Baby," he moaned softly into my ear and I felt myself clench down on his hardness. "That's it, love." He caressed one hand down my thigh to hitch my leg around his hip before snaking it between us to stroke me until I cried out and fell over the edge violently. He groaned my name loudly and three thrusts later joined me in the abyss.
I smiled lazily at him as he cuddled me close in his arms. He pressed his lips to my forehead and whispered his love to me once more.
"I love you, too." I glanced at the clock and saw it was well past when he should have been at his parent's house for Christmas Eve dinner. "I think your mom might kill me for making you late."
He chuckled lowly. "That's okay, I told her I was making a side trip to pick up my girlfriend first." I grinned at his words. "Besides, all I want for Christmas is you. Looks like I finally got my wish."
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Reviews are like Edward showing up at your door holding up mistletoe!