Disclaimer: No copyright infringement intended.
Read the A/N at the end, Thanks
The ride back to Seattle from Forks was torture...on my body. I felt like a kid who had been placed in front of a candy store and told that they could only stand there and look through the window all day. The candy was free, the store was open, but I couldn't go in. Edward was my candy. So, yeah, riding for three hours in a car with a man that I desperately wanted to kiss again and again was really a lot harder than I thought it would be now that I had tasted him.
I kept sneaking sideways glances at him while he drove. He smiled, looking way way too pretty in his dark sunglasses. He drove one-handed, with his right arm leaning on the armrest between our seats. I couldn't help myself. I had to touch him again, so I slipped my arm around behind his and rested my hand in the crook of his arm at his elbow, pulling myself closer to him, leaning on the armrest as he did.
I watched his lazy smile as it became brighter before he looked over at me, noticing my change in position. Without saying a word, he shifted his hand a little so that it hung on my side of the armrest, letting the pads of his fingers trace small circles on my upper thigh near the hem of my shorts.
With a simple touch I could taste him on my lips again, the way our tongues had met, moved together, restless yet soft. I couldn't escape the truth that there was so much more in that one kiss than I had ever felt before. Soft, sweet, gentle, then rough when we fell back on the bed together, laughing, as we smiled into each other's lips as they touched one another, over and over and everywhere. It was all him. I knew then that it always would be.
I was exhausted by the time we got back to the city. I had gotten several texts from Alice and Rose wanting to know the details of our trip. They were probably bubbling over with excitement; I was simply happy and honestly, feeling a little warm and fuzzy. I hoped that feeling didn't go away, at least for a while.
Edward and I were quiet as we walked through the lobby and into the waiting elevator to go up to our floor. I wanted to say something, but "Hey, you're a great kisser. Can we do that again?" didn't really sound like something that fit the moment. However, as the doors closed, I didn't have to wait long to find out what was on his mind.
"You've been quiet all afternoon. Are you okay?" He pulled his hands from his pockets and rested them on the railing along the wall as he leaned back. I could see that he was eyeing me, waiting for a response.
"I'm more than okay. Actually, I'm pretty fucking perfect right now." I smiled brightly and turned around to face him fully, stepping over his foot to stand between his legs.
He sighed, relief washed across his face, his shoulders slumped as the tension was released. Then he looked up wearing that gorgeous smile that I had claimed as mine. I bit the inside of my cheek, waiting for his response. He looked away shyly, then back to my face.
"Thank God. I was beginning to think I was the only one who felt how perfect this feels." Standing to his full height, we locked eyes as he brought his hands to my face, putting one on each side as I slid my arms around his waist and slipped my hands into his back pockets.
His lips met mine, warm, so tender, once, twice, three times as I felt him smiling against my lips. "It shouldn't feel this perfect so fast, yet I can't stop smiling." My breath hitched.
The elevator halted and the opening doors broke us apart momentarily. He took my pinky finger in his hand as we we made our way down the hall to my apartment door. Then as I turned to face him again, he draped his arms over my shoulders, framing my face with his biceps and leaning his forehead to mine.
"What do we do now, counselor?" I smirked and he chuckled. His warm breath fanned my lips making them tingle. My arms and hands had a mind of their own and before I knew it they found their way around his ribs to his back before I pulled hips flush with mine.
"I'm sure there's probably some set of rules we should follow here. But, honestly, I feel like breaking them all when I'm with you." He licked his lips before he continued, "spend some time with me tonight, Bella."
I swallowed the lump in my throat that was keeping me from breathing properly. All I could do was nod before I let my tongue trace his lips. When they parted, I slipped my tongue inside, sucking his, tasting him, wanting to devour every piece of him I could in that moment. My body was on fire as we pulled away, breathing each other in. Smiling again.
"I better go see the girls. They want details." My words were breathless against his lips.
"What are you gonna tell them?" He grinned, backing away, running his hands slowly down my arms before dropping them at his side.
"That my fuck hot man stops time with his kisses." I grinned, dipped both hands in the waist band of his jeans at his belt buckle and tugged as I rose up to my toes to peck him on the lips. "And that I can't wait to spend more time with him." Another kiss.
"I like the sound of that." He laughed, putting his arm around me and pulling me close again. "So, I'll see you a little later then?" he asked, placing a kiss on my temple.
"Yep, see you then." He winked as he put his key in the door and opened it slowly. I was smiling to myself as I opened my door. It was amazing the difference a day had made.
Although it was still kind of early, I changed into my cotton pajama set. Rose always bitched about this particular set of pajamas, saying they looked like June Cleaver pajamas with the button up top and matching pants. I loved them. I've had them since my freshman year in college and the cotton was so well worn and soft. Besides, I don't think June Cleaver's were polka dotted and I know she didn't have grinch slippers like mine. I pulled my ponytail tighter as I exited the elevator onto the first floor towards Rose and Emmett's apartment.
Just as I was about to knock, the door flew open. A very pouty Emmett and I exchanged looks.
"Come in. God, why do you three have to have your chats in my bed? Why can't you get all dark and twisty somewhere else? There's a game on and I'm hungry."
"Shut up, Emmett. Order pizza and go upstairs." I heard Rose yell from the kitchen. He rolled his eyes.
"I'm going to Edward's. His TV is bigger than Jasper's anyway," he grumbled as he stepped around me and into the hall as Alice and Jasper's apartment door opened.
"Do you have beer, Emmett?" Jasper asked as he let Alice pass through the open door before closing it behind him.
"No, damn it. See what you ladies do?" he huffed. "Come on, Jasper. We'll get Edward to buy that shit and I'll buy the fucking pizza so his ass won't be whining about how much we're getting," he said, stomping off towards the lobby. Jasper grinned, shook his head and waved before slowly following Emmett's path toward the front doors of the building.
Alice and I went in and found Rose in the kitchen pouring three glasses of wine.
"What the hell is Emmett's problem." Alice asked, taking a glass from the counter.
"You know how he gets when he's hungry. I have cramps and don't feel like cooking. Sex is out of the question, too. So, take away his two favorite things in one day and he's acting like a baby." She shrugged.
"So, tell us about this trip." Alice eyed me while Rose opened the freezer and put a pint of ice cream under her arm while she grabbed her wine glass and three spoons.
"Well, it was a really great trip." I grinned and took a sip of my wine. I had never been one to kiss and tell, but I decided I could share a few details. Hopefully it would be enough to get them off my back and give us some space.
We retreated to Emmett and Rose's king-size bed, the three of us sitting under the covers with our backs against the headboard drinking wine and passing the ice cream bucket back and forth. I told them about the trip down, how Edward shared my love of ferry boats, how I had never felt so at one with someone when we were working, and how funny it was that he had climbed that old tree in the yard just to talk. That led us to reminisce about the crazy things we did in high school and all the times that Emmett had to replace the lattice work on the side of Rose's house because it broke every time he tried to climb it. He busted his ass no less than three times and never made it up the wall to her window.
I told them how he tasted like coffee and caramel, warmth and safety, and most of all hope. I felt like a fucking teenager just sharing details of our kiss, so I cut it short. I would keep my tingly-teenage-girl feelings to myself. We were adults and Alice and Rose often got overzealous anytime I entered a new relationship. This was mine and Edward's, and I didn't care what anyone really had to say about how slow or fast things moved or didn't move. We were in control and the looks on their faces were priceless when I told them just that.
At first, I thought they would be angry. Alice and Rose simply exchanged odd looks, then both of them burst out laughing.
"Bella, don't worry about us. We just want you happy and I think I can speak for both of us in saying that you are happier now than we have ever seen you." Rose chuckled and downed the rest of her glass of wine.
"Yeah, B, don't worry. We promise not to interrupt. Those days are over. Do this your way." Alice smiled and played with my fingers.
"Thank you. I was worried you would give me hell and I didn't want to have to hide this from you," I said as I looked between the two of them.
"The fact that you even thought about hiding it from us just to continue seeing him speaks volumes about how you feel about him." Rose winked and got up from the bed.
"She's right, Bella. Now, go get your man. He's probably wondering what we've done with you." Alice stood from the bed, grabbing my hand to help me from my spot in the middle.
I laughed. Good wine, great friends, a slight buzz and I had my crossword to do tonight. Most of all, I had Edward to share things with and I was suddenly very ready to see him again.
"Rose, I'll call Jasper and send Emmett home. Go get him B." She smiled as we called out our goodbye's to Rose and left. I stopped to hug Alice in the hallway just as the doors to the elevator opened. Emmett and Jasper stepped off and I could see that Emmett was in a much better mood. His cheeks were a little rosy as he walked down the hall to where we were standing between the two apartment doors.
"I'm sorry I was so rude earlier." Emmett said with his head hung. "You know how I can be when I am hungry. I apologize. Did you guys have fun?" he asked as he looked up at us from under his lashes.
"Yes, we did. It's okay, Emmett," I replied, patting his shoulder. He smiled and nodded before retreating inside his apartment, calling out for Rose as he closed the door.
I may have sprinted to the elevator, then into my apartment looking for my crossword puzzle. I always did the crossword on Monday nights. It calmed me and helped me sort through my day so I could rest better. I hadn't been able to do it Monday, since Edward and I were in Forks, so Tuesday was my Monday this week and I was going share this with him.
Back in my apartment, I toed off my grinch slippers and grabbed my reading glasses, crossword puzzle and pencil from the bedside table before walking through the laundry room and toward Edward's door. I knocked lightly.
"Come in." I opened the door slowly.
"Are you decent?"
"I'm never decent, but I've got clothes on if that's what you're asking." He chuckled as I entered slowly to find him sitting propped up against a couple pillows in bed, shirtless, and holding a magazine with one hand. His other arm was rested behind his head. Deadly sexy.
"You wear glasses, too?" I asked as he shifted the magazine to his other hand so that he could pull the covers back slightly allowing me to crawl up on his king-size bed.
"Yeah, for reading. I didn't know you did. Yours are cute. Almost makes you look smart," he teased.
"Oh yeah? Well you look like a nerd." I playfully smacked his arm as I scooted closer, bringing my knees up close to my chest and resting my back straight against the headboard. In this position, my shoulder was just slightly higher than his with the way he was sitting.
"So, the nerd gets the girl in his bed, huh?" He smirked, putting his index finger to the center of his frames and pushing up his glasses as he spoke.
"Yeah, for now. Monday is usually my crossword day and we were in Forks so..." I looked down at the puzzle and doodled my name.
"So, this is something you do every week?"
"Yep. Is this okay that I'm here like this? I mean, working a crossword puzzle while you read really isn't all that exciting or special. But, this is me I guess." I tapped my pencil on the paper. I hadn't given it much thought before I came over. I guess something told me that sharing quiet time would be okay. I hoped I wasn't wrong as I watched him place the magazine on his lap and remove his glasses before he turned to look at me.
"I love you here like this. In fact, it's more than okay." Searching my eyes, he spoke softly before shifting again, putting his glasses back on, he picked up the magazine and started reading. "Besides, I've already done that puzzle. So you have the advantage of my superhuman memory skills tonight, babe." He grinned, still looking at the magazine. I rolled my eyes and scooted a little closer.
We sat there in silence for a long while. The television played low in the background and I noticed that he would look up every now and then when he heard something interesting. My feet were freezing. I know it's summer, but good God it was ice cold in his apartment. I had to get some warmth or I was gonna have to go back to my bed. That was a last resort.
Edward was engrossed in the article he was reading. He hadn't moved a muscle in the last fifteen minutes, it seemed. So I slowly scooted my feet just a little, sliding them until they were near his hips. Then I dipped the mattress a little further with my feet and slid my toes under his behind. I had to move closer to him to accomplish this, but as my knees and legs leaned slightly against his biceps and chest, I cast a sly glance at him to gauge his reaction to my stone cold feet. I knew the minute he felt it. He looked up, staring straight ahead for a second before looking over at me.
"Do you have your toes under my ass?"
I wiggled my toes a little just to aggravate him. "Maybe. Maybe not." Chewing on my pencil, I kept my eyes on my paper.
"They're fucking freezing."
"Then turn down the air. I'm cold. It's your hot ass on my toes or frostbite." I shrugged
"Hmph. I guess I'll let it slide since I like the idea of you having all your toes." He laughed, causing the bed to shake. "And because you said I have a hot ass."
"I thought you'd see things my way." I poked his shoulder with my eraser. He shook his head and went back to reading. Again the room grew silent with the exception of the sounds coming from the television.
After ten minutes of thinking and reading the question for seven across over and over again, I had no choice but to ask for his help. It was the last clue and it had me stumped. I felt like I knew the answer, but the word just wouldn't form in mind.
"Hey, I need your help." I nudged his shoulder with my pencil again.
"Seven across says it is 'The occurrence and development of events by chance in a happy or beneficial way'. I know I know this one, I just can't think of the word." I watched as he stared at the ceiling for a minute before his face broke with that gorgeous, happy smile that I love so much.
"You should know this one for sure." His voice was gravelly from not speaking, making it more delicious than usual. He brought his right arm up and placed it across my lap, curling his forearm around my knees gently. Using the tips of his fingers, he tenderly began stroking them back and forth against my outer thigh, effectively pulling me closer into him with his touch.
"What is it then. I can't think." I hesitated for second. Then with a movement that was much more natural than it should be, I reached up and swiped a small piece of hair back from his forehead before letting my arm fall behind his head to rest across his shoulders. His shoulder was basically nestled in mine.
"It's serendipity, Bella. Pure and simple," he whispered, pulling his hand from my outer thigh to cup the back of my head, gently pulling me into his lips. I let him. Warm lips met mine, barely touching, his tongue tracing and dancing with mine with such emotion, reaching into my heart. He placed two more quick kisses to my chin and nose before returning his hand to my thigh, as he smiled up at me.
"Serendipity." I nodded. "Yes. I don't why I couldn't think of that earlier," I whispered, breathless, hoping he understood.
"Hey, are you thirsty or hungry? I've got oreos and milk." Wide-eyed, he raised his eyebrows suggestively.
"No way," I laughed.
"Yes. Who doesn't like oreos, right?" He patted my leg and pushed the covers back to sit on the edge of the bed. I stared, shamelessly as he pulled on his jeans and shuffled out of the bedroom.
"You want milk too, or do you want to share?" he called out from the down the hall.
"I'll share." I grinned and laid my puzzle and pencil on the bed beside me.
He quickly returned with his arms full. He held a pack of double stuff springtime oreos with blue cream, an extra large glass of milk and a bag of doritos. I couldn't help but laugh as he approached the bed, setting the milk on the nightstand.
"What? I'm hungry," he said with a laugh as he passed me the cookies and chips before slipping out of his jeans and lifting the covers to crawl back into our little nest. He even lifted his ass and waited for me to put my toes back in their place before he got comfortable.
"I didn't realize your junk food addiction was this developed." I snickered a little as I opened the springtime oreos.
"First, I'm only mildly addicted. Second, you can't eat oreos without moving directly to the cheesy goodness that is doritos. You gotta kill the chocolate taste. I thought everyone knew that." He said, shrugging as he opened the bag of doritos.
"Oh God, these are so good." I covered my lips with my hand as I mumbled with a mouth full of oreo.
"Wow, I think I may have found your weakness." He smirked.
"Actually, I have two."
"Oh yeah?" He leaned a little closer, staring at me as he placed an oreo in his mouth and held it between his teeth, with half of the cookie jutting out between his lips.
"Yeah." I leaned in closer to his lips. "Edward Cullen and oreos." I grinned before raising myself up enough to put my mouth on the other half of the cookie he still had perched between his lips. I bit the cookie and pecked his lips, making a smacking sound before moving away. We both laughed and he offered me some milk.
"So, how's that working out for you?" He raised a brow, crunching another oreo, as he settled back on his pillows and draped his arm over my knees again.
"I'd say that the combination is...intoxicating." I shrugged and plopped another piece of oreo into my mouth.
"Do you want to stay after the picnic? I'll put on a crappy movie guaranteed to put you right to sleep." He smiled lightly as he gripped and flexed his hand on my thigh, then moved it up to my knee and back down. The palm of his hand that affectionately caressed my thigh sent new shivers through my body, which both warmed me and made me never want to leave that bed, that moment.
"Sure, but I get to be the big spoon. You're a bed hog and I can't have you laying all over me or I can't sleep." I teased.
"Okay, okay. I don't mind being the little spoon, just try to keep your hands off the merchandise. If you plan to violate me, wake me up first. I definitely don't want to miss it," he snickered. I grabbed a dorito and tossed it at his head. He shifted to the side, quickly catching it in his mouth as he gave me a goofy grin. I rolled my eyes and pretended to be annoyed. I wasn't. I was happy.
Just being there with him felt more right than most things had felt in the last five years of my life. It was glaringly obvious now that the connection we had was so much more than I thought it would be. The simple touch of his skin to mine, the closeness I felt to him while doing something as mundane as a crossword puzzle, and the oreo-dorito kisses he placed on my cheeks and neck as we laughed some more were the things about Edward that I was sure would draw me closer and closer to him every day.
The next couple of days of work passed without incident. In the mornings, we shared coffee and the newspaper before walking to work. On Thursday, Edward was MIA for our morning coffee time so I headed into work as usual, wearing a frown. Of course, his absence had me questioning the meaning of all our conversations and quiet time since we returned on Tuesday. I felt like such an idiot when I entered my office. Then, on my desk I saw a very large cup of coffee with what looked to be a note tucked underneath.
I slowly walked to my desk, dropping my bag on the couch along the way, and picked up the cup which had been placed in the center of my desk. I set the cup back down and took the note. As I read, I traced my finger over the neat script that covered the red post-it.
I missed the sunshine and coffee this morning.
Hope this makes your day brighter. See you this afternoon.
I glanced out the window noting that it was, by far, the darkest of overcast days we had seen in more than a week. I smiled like a fool when I realized that I was the sunshine he was referring to. I spent the rest of my day busying myself with returning phone calls and correspondence. And I did it all with a goofy smile plastered on my face.
Fridays were casual days at the office and for me that meant I took off my shoes. I know it sounds a little too comfortable but the carpet felt so good under my toes and I rationalized that it also helped me think better to be barefoot...while munching on an apple...while reading over a brief. Yes, I was actually working and since I hadn't heard a peep from Edward's office I knew he must have been busy as well. I really needed some feedback on whether my argument was well founded. It was time to interrupt him.
With my apple in one hand and my document in the other, I wandered across the hall while I took another bite and continued to read.
"Hey, have you got to time to read something for me?"
"Sure." He didn't look up. He ran his fingers through his hair and went back to scribbling notes on the yellow legal pad next to the file he was reading. I sighed and took a bite of my apple. I felt the juice dribble down my lip and giggled. His head suddenly shot up. He stared at my lips as I licked the juice away.
Whoa, that got his attention.
He cleared his throat and shifted in his seat. "I'm gonna have to ask you not to do that in my office," he said, pointing at my apple.
"What? Did I drip juice somewhere?" I looked down at the front of my shirt before looking back to him, widening my eyes, giving him my most innocent gaze.
"Um...no, it's just. Nevermind." He waved me off, reaching for the document in my hand. I handed it over with a smug smile tugging at my lips.
"So, I can't do this in your office?" I made to bite my apple in a dramatically slow way, licking the the spot I planned to bite before I did. My eyes were trained on his. He shifted again.
His eyes practically glowed as he stood up from his desk and slowly walked around it to where I stood.
"You really shouldn't test me, woman," he playfully warned, as he stood in front of me with both hands on his hips. I let my eyes wander down his chest to his waist, his belt buckle. I could see his shiny watch peeking out from under the cuff of his dress shirt as I continued to avoid looking into those eyes, the ones that owned me at the moment. I wanted him closer.
"Why's that?" I licked my lips, turning the granny smith apple in my hand as I looked for the next juicy spot to bite.
"Because." He took a step closer. I took a step back.
"You just." Another step closer. Another step back.
"Might get what you wish for." He pounced, grabbing my hips, digging both hands in my sides as I wiggled and moved under his merciless tickling. I howled and cackled.
"Shhh. Come here, girl. You're gonna get us fired with your crazy." He pulled me flush with his chest and wrapped his arms around me, linking his hands low on my back. I chuckled again and buried my head in his chest to stifle the giggles.
"I just came in here to get your help on that brief. Will you read it?" I fingered the buttons on his shirt as I looked up into his eyes.
"You know I will, if you'll do something for me." He opened his mouth and took a bite of my apple which I had been holding in my hand near his chin. And just like when I had bitten it earlier, the juice slid down his lip. I knew what would happen next and I was completely mesmerized as his tongue slipped between his lips and he slowly licked away the juice. I flicked my eyes back to his momentarily. I knew I was caught, but turnabout is fair play, right?
"Um..." I swallowed hard.
"So, will you do something for me?"
"What do you need?" He smirked. Leaning down he breathed against my cheek, my ear.
"Have dinner with me tomorrow night." His hot breath fanned across my earlobe sending a shiver up my spine. Almost instinctively, his arms tightened around my back.
"Like a date?"
"No, an execution," he deadpanned and rolled his eyes. "Yes, a date."
I tilted my head and tapped my chin pretending that his question required any amount of thought. It didn't, but I really liked watching Edward squirm.
"Okay, but don't go all out. I like simple. Keep it simple." I placed my hand over his heart and smiled as I buried my head under his chin. I don't know what I was thinking, I just knew that Edward Cullen had asked me on a date and for the first time in twelve years, I blushed.
"By the way, you totally caved on the no PDA rule." I felt the laughter rumble in his chest.
"It wasn't me buddy. That was all you." I leaned back and pushed on his chest.
"Ah, Bella. It's all in the strategy, babe," he whispered, lowering his head as he planted scorching open-mouthed kisses along my neck.
I couldn't decide if it was his clean Edward scent or the heated kisses, but I was certainly looking forward to finding out what he had in store for our date. I hoped that he would keep it simple. I didn't like going to fancy impersonal restaurants and such. I just wanted to enjoy him and hoped he understood. Saturday couldn't get here soon enough.
A/N: Please review and let me know what you think. Everyone who reviews gets a pic of E doing his ironing. It's quite..interesting. (no spoilers, for those who have seen Ironward already).
In case you are wondering..we are getting closer to you know.. For real. I promise. There is a plan. Thank you, to my usual suspects, modernsafari1 who is vacationing without me this week. Boo! She actually loves me so much that she flashed her bewbs to her hubs so she could finish reading before they left. I luff her so much.
Also, as always, the lovely ameliakbedelia who provides me with the best reading links without with a blink and always gives good feedback on my crazy rambling. She has also promised to provide a flask, full of whatever, for our road trip to NYC to see Rob and modernsafari1. I will be bringing the baby wipes, night vision goggles, and black beanies (this may not end well.)
Fics that own me:
Close Your Eyes by CaraNo
Practice to Deceive by Livie79
Dusty by YellowBella
A Getty Romance by rinabina
High Fidelity by Ireen_H
My Mate by PrincessRachel
Plight The My Troth by GingerandGreen