Disclaimer: I don't own them...
Thanks to SunflowerFran for reviewing, correcting, and making this story pretty. I posted the chapter without sending to her first because I felt so terrible for how long it took me to work on it. So this is an edited re-post thanks to her.
I fall into bed, completely exhausted. All of the things people say about toddlers and the terrible twos are absolutely, one hundred percent, true. I feel as if I've been run over by a train.
I bury my face in a pillow and stretch out across the bed, letting my body relax into the soft comforter.
I hear Bella laugh and feel the bed dip beside me.
I turn my head and open one eye to look at her.
Her laugh is rich and deep, and it makes it hard for me to keep a straight face.
I quickly reach out and grab her waist causing her to fall next to me as she screams and laughs while I tickle her.
"You are enjoying my exhaustion way too much, woman," I laugh and kiss her swiftly before pulling her into my side.
"It was nice to have a few days away but I missed you both terribly."
"How did it go?"
"Oh, Edward, the house is a nightmare! They kept it up on the outside, but the inside is a mess. The family fell on hard times and just couldn't afford the upkeep."
She was quiet for a moment but smiled when she looked up at me.
"Jasper flew out when I told him my thoughts, and he's working with the historical society. It could be a good thing for the company, but it will also be a lot of work."
"What are you thinking? Are you going to take the project?" I ask, resting my head on my hand, a little worried that this project will take her away from Matthew and me for an extended period of time.
"Well ..." She trails off, sitting up and looking at me with a smile.
"I didn't do too well being away from you and Matthew. I kept wondering if you'd eaten, was Matthew behaving, did you miss me..."
I rub her calf with my free hand. "We always miss you, even when it's only the hour you spend at the grocery store."
A smile lights up her face, and she squeezes my hand.
"I'm not too sure I will be able to see the renovations all the way through."
"Why not? Is everything okay? Are you not feeling well?"
A million thoughts are flitting through my mind.
"Well, it might be a little difficult to maneuver around too much when I'm pregnant."
A slow smile crosses my face and my hand tightens on her leg.
Her eyes are shining with tears, but her smile is happy.
I sit up and pull her onto my lap, "another baby?"
I look into her eyes and then kiss her, holding her face in my hands.
"I love you, so much."
She whispers her love against my lips as I lay her back on the bed to show her exactly how happy I am.
As I look down at my sleeping daughter, my heart fills with a happiness I will never be able to fully explain.
She's a beautiful baby.
I know I may be a bit biased, considering the fact that I'm her mother, but no one will ever be able to tell me differently.
I'm sitting on the window seat in the family room with Ava Marie in my arms while my husband and three-year old son are running and tumbling in the fallen autumn leaves.
My beautiful boy, Matthew Edward Masen Cullen, came into the world kicking and screaming, and he hasn't stopped since.
My pregnancy with Matthew was so easy; even the delivery. I went into the hospital at seven o'clock in the evening, and he was born at eleven fourteen that night. He weighed in at seven pounds, six ounces and had a pair of lungs so strong that his cries could be heard for four counties; at least that's how Grandfather Masen tells it.
Little Ava, on the other hand, did not want to see the daylight. I was two weeks past my due date with her. She came into this world weighing six pounds, three ounces and quiet as a mouse.
She sleeps all the time; I even have to wake her up for her feedings. Honestly, I get a little nervous that she's so quiet. I am always checking on her to make sure she's okay.
It's a strange thing to go from a loud, rambunctious little boy to a quiet, calm little girl.
I look out the window and watch as Edward falls into a huge pile of leaves, Matthew jumping in after him. They roll down a little hill, flattening leaves in their wake.
Matthew is a miniature version of Edward; reddish brown hair, green eyes and an infectious smile; I'm already worried about the effect he will have on the girls when he starts school.
Edward is doing a great job teaching our son how to be a gentleman. Matthew is already opening doors for me, with his father's help, and he brings his Nana Esme a flower, every time we visit.
He's also learning how to be 'cool' from his Uncle Memmett and Uncle Jas. He likes to call people 'dude' or 'bro' and fist bumps are mandatory greetings for all of the men in our family because shaking hands isn't cool.
I shake my head thinking about it. Emmett gets into trouble more than Matthew does.
Rosalie has calmed him down quite a bit though. She's graduated from college, and I'm pretty sure Emmett is planning to propose soon. I couldn't be happier for the two of them, although, they will have some tough times ahead. I can see Rosalie pulling away from Edward and me ... it makes me sad, but they will get through it; slowly but surely, they will be okay.
I look out at my boys and feel a pang of sadness for Edward. He will be hurt and angry with her for a long time; mostly, he will be hurt that she'll pull away from our children, and then the anger will set it when she tries to reconnect. The kids won't know her, won't understand why she wasn't around.
Unfortunately, Rosalie isn't very clear to me so I don't know exactly what will happen to her that will make her so withdrawn and angry, but I am already feeling the hurt of knowing she won't confide in me. We've become close over the last few years, and I'm sad that she won't let me ... support her.
I let out a deep breath. I can't worry about those things now. Things can change, her decisions might change ... I can only hope.
A black Mercedes pulls into the drive and Matthew jumps up, running toward the car. Edward falls back and laughs; probably happy he can have a minute to catch his breath.
I giggle and stand up, adjusting Ava in my arms.
The door in the entry opens and Matthew's laughter carries through the house.
"Mommy!" He yells. "Grampa and Gramma are here."
Esme and Carlisle come into the house laughing at my son's antics as hellos and cheek kisses are given, and my daughter is swiftly removed from my arms.
I smile as my husband wraps his arms around my waist and whispers I love you in my ear.
Life is pretty amazing.
I have a fantastic husband, beautiful children, and a lively, wonderful family.
A few years ago, I was sure that I was destined to be alone, but a meeting with a beautiful man and his family, changed that for me.
I listen to the laughter and loud chatter traveling through our home, and it fills my heart with happiness.
I never imagined that I would be so happy; that I would find a man to accept me for who I am.
I never imagined it, but it happened, and I am so grateful that it did.
a/n: So this is the end of the road for these two. Many apologies for the delay, but life, work and craziness have prevented me from even sitting at the computer when I get home at night.
Thanks so much to all of you for reading, reviewing and recommending. It means so much to me. I hope you enjoyed this last little peek into their lives and that your imagination takes you to the happily ever after.