A/N - sad that I don't own Twilight but am grateful for my beta gooseonline.
Chapter 18 peanut butter and honey
After Bella and I went in her room we went straight to the bed, lay down in each other's arms and dropped off to sleep. But I just couldn't stay that way. I lay there for a while just looking at her. Her beautiful hair was still a bit messy from the gash where those bastards had pushed her against the tree. The bruising on her face made me want to wrap her in cotton wool and never let anyone near her.
This was our first time lying together in her bed and I couldn't help but think about how well our bodies fit together. With my arm around her waist, her back to my front I could imagine sleeping here with her every night. Waking her with kisses down her neck to her shoulder. I'd slip the strap of her little tank top down so I could kiss the bare flesh along her collarbone. Her skin is so beautiful. Her scent is divine and her body is just delicious. I can't wait to taste her and have her writhing as I bring her to the edge. I want to see her cum again. The flush of pink on her cheeks.
I sighed, I had to get up and clear my head before I started something I shouldn't. She needs to rest and recover. She sighed. Damn she looked so tempting.
It was in late in the afternoon and Bella had been asleep for a few hours. I was fucking tired but I just couldn't stay asleep. The name Artemis was nagging at me.
I remember reading about Artemis when I was a kid, although I was more interested in Apollo and Zeus than any of the female gods but I do remember Artemis because she had a pack of dogs and she hunted with her bow and arrow, which of course I thought was pretty cool.
But I'd heard it recently? I just couldn't remember where. Before getting out of the bed I leaned forward and whispered into Bella's ear, "I love you sweet one."
I tried not to disturb her as I grabbed my laptop from my bag and headed out to the lounge area. I hadn't really looked at it before but it was clearly a playroom for Lil Bit. With comfy lounges surrounded by toys neatly but casually sorted around the room. There were books everywhere just like at the bakery. Bella obviously loved to read. Not only were there children's books by the hundred but also dog-eared books Bella has left absent-mindedly around the room. I smiled imagining her forgetting where she left her book and just coming across a different lost book while searching for another.
I sat down on one of the couches and cranked up the laptop. I wanted to check my email and work things that I missed last week while I was throwing my tantrum over seeing Bella with Jacob.
I. Am. Such. An. Idiot.
When my laptop came to life I logged into my work email. I authorised some payments for Jess and answered a few queries from various department heads. Then I opened Angela's weekly projects update report reviewing her team's progress with projects we've agreed to pursue investments in and to review the new opportunities section identifying opportunities we might want to pursue for investment. Everything was in order and nothing too exciting. Many new opportunities were small companies which are showing high yield potential for investment or even other investment groups which might be purchase opportunities.
Angela's team watch the markets closely and look for these opportunities, when they see potential they work up information on the company. Pitching these new opportunities to the leadership team was actually one of Angela's strengths I've discovered since she took over from James. She really sold the sizzle.
I looked through the list of opportunities her team have under review and my eyes bugged out of my head when I saw the name Artemis Investments. That's where I'd heard it. This had been the opportunity Angela had tried to talking to me about on Friday morning but my head was too far up my own arse being angry with Bella to listen to anything.
Usually there's a hyperlink in the report to the information the team have put together but this was a new entry so there wasn't anything there yet.
I shot an email off to Angela to ask her to meet with me on Monday to give me any and all information she had on Artemis.
I pulled up some of my best research sites and starting looking into this Artemis myself. I'd reviewed every reference to this Artemis Investments I could find for about an hour and I could seriously understand why Angela thought it was an interesting company. They had their fingers in small businesses all over Seattle. It was a fascinating and eclectic group of investments. Their annual yield showed positive growth while their capital investment returned higher than market return since their inception two years ago.
I received an email from Angela with her research attached in a project development file. I shook my head. Of course, she is working on the weekend; such a go-getter. I really liked this woman. Intelligent, nice sense of humour but not in your face. She was a great choice to replace my idiot cousin.
I sent her back an email:
'Thanks for the file. Fascinating company. Let's still meet on Monday to discuss, I am intrigued. By the way stop working on the weekend. Get out and get a life!'
She replied immediately:
'Happy to meet on Monday boss. It is a fascinating investment opportunity, they're getting a great return on their investments but all their transactions are small by our standards. The largest is $100,000 but most are around $20,000, there's just a lot of them. Oh and I'll stop working weekends when you do - get a life yourself boss.'
I was going to read more when I felt little fingers on my neck. I'd been so engrossed in my email and research I hadn't noticed that Lil Bit had woken up and was sitting next to me. She had reached her hand up and was walking her fingers across the back of my neck.
"Hello little love, did you have a nice nap?"
She yawned and looked at me sleepily. "Mmmm, hungy now Eh-wed."
"Me too, Lil Bit. Why don't I try to get you something to eat but I have to tell you in all honesty, I am a terrible cook."
Lil Bit laughed and her joy was a beautiful sight to see.
"Momma cook some-fing?"
"We need to let your momma sleep. Why don't you show me where the kitchen is and we'll see what I can do for us, okay?"
She hopped down from the couch and held out her hand. I moved the laptop on to the chair, stood up and took the tiny hand offered to me.
"I show oo, Eh-wed."
With that Lil Bit started walking me down the long hallway. When we got back to the beautiful entry way she turned a corner taking me down a different hallway. This time we passed a formal lounge room which was huge and littered with gorgeous lounge chairs. The room was beautiful and really inviting. The walls were lined with bookcases filled with books. The walls were in that beautiful wood that I'd noticed yesterday and there were more flowers on the serving table in the middle of the room.
Lil Bit pulled on my arm, "Dis way, eh-wed."
Next we passed a massive dining room with a long formal dining table surrounded by beautiful carved wood chairs. There were china cabinets against the walls filled with china and tea settings. The smell of the polished wood was lemony and rich. The table was enormous with seating for 16 people.
Fuck, this place was incredible. How did all this fit on top of Bella's Bakery?
I chuckled as Lil Bit attempted to drag me along to get to the kitchen, "Okay, little love, I'm coming."
The room opened up to the most glorious kitchen I'd even seen. It was large but it was homey too. Not at all like the professional bakery kitchen downstairs. Beautiful mahogany wood, rich marble counter tops. Double ovens, double sink, double fridge, cupboards everywhere and what looked like a wall furnace in the corner with cut logs underneath. There were pots and pans of all shapes and sizes hanging from a frame on the ceiling above a large food prep counter in the middle with stools on one side.
Lil Bit went straight to one of the stools which had rungs on the side for her to use to climb up. She climbed up and settled herself giving me a huge grin.
"Wow, this is a beautiful kitchen." I couldn't help but stand amazed looking at this magnificent space which make any cook happy and realising I felt completely out of place in here. I wanted to pull up the stool next to Lil Bit and watch Bella move around this beautiful room.
"Dis iz momma's hair-ven." I chuckled as she waved her arms and had such a dramatic look on her face as she obviously mimicked Bella, "Yes, I am sure it is."
I moved over to the cupboards and started opening and shutting them randomly. Not really sure what I was looking for but wanting to find something to feed us both. "Aha! Bread! Well that's a start isn't it little love."
She giggled as I put the loaf of bread on the bench. "Now I need a knife to cut the bread," I mumbled to myself as I opened and shut drawers looking for a bread knife. "Although I suppose I could just rip the bread apart with my bare hands."
Finally, I found the knife and a cutting board and I gave Lil Bit a triumphant look holding up my prizes before placing them on the counter and cutting slices of the delicious smelling bread. She giggled at my antics.
I went back to searching for food to put on the bread. Finally I found a pantry cupboard and I hit pay dirt. Peanut butter and honey, yes! Now if I could just find a banana this would be the perfect snack.
I turned to Lil Bit, "Bananas?" I questioned.
She pointed to a bowl on the other end of the kitchen full of fruit. Perfect.
I waggled my eyebrows at her, "I am going to make you my favourite sandwich ever. Peanut butter, honey and banana. Yum."
She clapped her hands with glee. So adorable.
I found us a plate each and then set about making one of the very few things I knew how to cook, well assemble really. I spread the peanut better nice and thick, sliced the banana sharing it between our two sandwiches.
"And now for the pièce de résistance!"
I made a ridiculous show of drizzling the honey over the banana slices. I closed the other slice of bread to complete the sandwich. I cut hers into four pieces and placed it in front of her.
"Do you want a glass of juice? Or milk?"
I found a little mug with Elizabeth written on it in the cupboard and I half filled it with milk. I poured myself a large glass and sat down next to Lil Bit."
"Fank oo, Eh-wed."
Such a good girl.
"My pleasure, Lil Bit. I hope you like it."
She picked up one of the quarters I'd cut for her and she bit into it hungrily. Her eyes lit up as she chewed.
"Good isn't it, little one," I said before I bit into my sandwich taking a huge bite.
She swallowed and nodded, "Mmmm, Eh-wed, yummy."
"What is going on in here?"
I turned to see Bella and I nearly choked on my sandwich. She'd changed into a little pair of Daisy Duke shorts and a tank top. My eyes must've been bugging out of my head like a cartoon character as she walked towards us.
"What have you made Edward?"
"Dis yummy, momma."
Bella leaned down and reached across me, her breasts brushing against my arm as she picked up my sandwich and took a bite. She closed her eyes and moaned.
I gulped. God could she be any more gorgeous. Fuck. I licked my lips watching her mouth as she ate the bite from my sandwich and swallowed. Oh God. She is so sexy. I just wanted to lick along her neck and….
"Are you alright, Edward?"
What? What did she say? I shook my head and grinned at her, "I like your shorts."
She blushed a beautiful pink,"It's what I like to wear around the house. I hope that's okay."
"Oh yeah, sweet one. That's more than okay." I leaned over and planted a soft kiss on her neck just under her ear.
She smiled at me and we just looked at each other for a while.
"Oo hungy, momma?"
Bella looked me straight in the eye, bit her bottom lip trying to hide her grin, "Yes I am."
I chuckled and stood up, "Well stop eating my sandwich woman and let me make you one of your own."
I put together another sandwich for Bella while she sat next to Lil Bit watching me move around her kitchen.
"This is a beautiful house, Bella. How does it all fit over the Bakery? It didn't look this big."
"Actually the apartment is spread over the bakery and the two other shops."
"Oh, I don't remember noticing the other shops," I said as I passed her the sandwich. "Here you go. A sandwich all your own so you can stop eating mine."
She giggled and picked up the sandwich.
"I bought the building and I opened up the whole of upstairs to build a nice homey space for Lil Bit and I to live in."
"Oh, you own the building?" I was a bit surprised and impressed. "So what else is downstairs?"
"The commercial kitchen and the offices for the catering business." She said this as though I already knew she had a commercial kitchen and a catering business.
"Oh," I was a bit overwhelmed. "I thought the kitchen in the bakery was where you did all your baking?"
"For Bella's Bakery, yes. But I have a larger commercial kitchen and ovens to handle all the restaurant and café orders, as well as the catering jobs we have.
"I used to work out of the bakery kitchen while I built up the customer base but it soon became unworkable so I converted the other two shops in the building into the more commercial operation. I'll take you down later to show you around if you like."
"Yeah. I'd love to see that sweet one." Frankly I was dumbfounded. She'd achieved so much. I was having trouble putting it all together in my head and I wanted to ask her about it but I lost track of all coherent thoughts as she wandered over to the sink to wash the plates and clear up.
I just couldn't stop staring at her arse. It was round and plump and perfect. She bent down to place the rinsed dishes in the dishwasher and I thought I might faint. I quickly looked away. Fuck, there was a toddler in the room and I was having lascivious thoughts about her momma. I rubbed my hands over my face and tried to change the direction of my thoughts.
"So where are Rosalie, Sam and Jacob?" I asked.
"I got a text from Rose saying everyone was coming over tomorrow for lunch. It should be fun, I just have to decide what to cook. Maybe you should invite your family over too Edward?"
"You wouldn't mind?"
"I'd love it. I love entertaining for large groups. I was an only child remember. Well for 16 years I was anyway." She smiled at Elizabeth.
Lil Bit lifted her arms to me asking to be lifted down from her stool. I reached down and cuddled her close before placing her down on the floor, sending her on her way with a kiss to the top of her head.
She trotted down the hallway heading back to her playroom lounge I supposed.
As I watched her until she turned around the corner at the entry way I remembered my Uncle Aro. "Oh, I just remembered I have to meet with my Uncles tomorrow for lunch. Could I maybe invite them too?"
"More the merrier." She went over to a bookcase over by the wall which was obviously filled with cookbooks. She sat at a dining table which was placed near the windows and starting sifting through recipes.
"Okay, I'll just let everyone know. Around midday, love?"
"Mmm." She was clearly lost in her world of recipes.
I sent off a group text to invite my parents, Alley and Em to join the lunch party. Then I sent another to Uncle Aro and invited him, Sulpicia and Marcus to join us.
My phone pinged repeatedly with new messages coming in:
'Fuck yeah. sounds great. More time with rosie for me?… Em'
'Does that mean I finally get to meet Miss Elizabeth? We'll be there dumpling ... Mom'
'We'll be there Edward. Thank you. Is that at your Baker's?…. Aro'
'I can't wait…. Alley'
"Everyone said yes, love. Are you sure it won't be too much for you? You are supposed to be resting, y'know." I was a little worried this was going to be too much for her.
She looked at me with a huge grin, "This is my idea of fun, Edward. Don't worry. I'll pick something easy. I think Italian if Marcus is going to be here. He loves Italian food." She got up and went over to the pantry cupboard checking ingredients against her recipes.
"Yes, he certainly does."
Wait, what did she say? "Love, what did you say?"
"Marcus," she said absent-mindedly from inside her pantry. "He loves my cooking, but he especially loves it when I cook Italian."
What. The. Fuck. How the hell does she know my Uncle Marcus? My mind went crazy jumping from theory to theory and none of them good. I sat down, leaning my elbow on my knees with my head in my hands. I was tugging on my hair trying not to give way to panic. What was I missing?
Love is patient, love trusts… I repeated this over and over in my head. I just wanted to calm down.
Bella obviously saw my traumatised posture and ran over to me.
"Baby!" She dropped the book on to the table,"What's wrong, Edward? Baby? Talk to me?"
I breathed out desperate to calm my panic. Still with my head in my hands I tilted my head to look at her but my expression must have been desperate because she looked even more panicked looking at me. I looked back down to the floor. What was I missing?
"Edward, baby, what's wrong?" She knelt in front of me and cupped my face in her hands.
I tried to look away from her not wanting to looking into her deep brown eyes. I just couldn't reconcile this. How did she know Marcus?
She held my face and leaned her forehead to my forehead and whispered to me. "Calm down baby. Tell me. What's wrong? Don't run from me again Edward."
I looked straight into her eyes for a long time, using her sweet face to calm me. I wouldn't run. I wouldn't jump to conclusions. She wasn't conspiring against me. She wasn't cheating. She was my sweet one. My Bella. I loved her and love is patient, love is kind, love trusts.
I leaned back and gave her a small smile. She leaned back on her heels and waited for me to speak.
"How do you know my Uncle Marcus, sweet one? Please explain it to me."
She tilted her head and smiled with relief I think.
"That's a bit of a long story, baby. Why don't I make us some coffee and I'll tell you all about it okay."
Just then there was a crashing sound and Lil Bit was crying. We both leapt up and headed down the hall. As we turned the corner Bella called out, "Lil Bit are you okay baby girl?"
When we entered the playroom lounge, Lil Bit looked up to Bella with tears in her eyes. There was a sea of colourful building blocks all around her.
"I twy I self," she sobbed.
"Oh, baby girl, don't cry. You are a very good girl to try to put the blocks away all by yourself."
I leaned down and started picking up the blocks, "C'mon Lil Bit we'll do it together, okay." I reached over and placed the block into the box she had at her feet.
"Fank oo, Eh-wed. I twy I self."
"I know you did little love. It's okay."
"O-kay, Eh-wed. Sowwy Momma."
All the blocks were back in their box and the box was safely back on its shelf.
"It's alright baby girl. Let's go to your bathroom and get your bath ready. Then if you're a very good girl we might all watch a movie together, okay."
Bella starting leading Lil Bit to her room but she gave me an apologetic look, "We will talk Edward…. later, okay"
A/N: yes, I think they definitely need to talk later...!
If you don't like it there are plenty of wonderful stories available so I wish you well and hope you find something you really like.
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