Hello! New chapter!...
Probably next chapter is going to be the last.
I hope you enjoyed this fic. It turned out different than I had originally wanted, but I liked it. I hope you did too.
Thank you for your alerts, for your reviews. And for reading silently (it still counts)
CHAPTER 12: BLANK SPACE.
Moving day was finally here. After weeks of endless errands by the family, the day had finally arrived. Jasper had told Bella in a 'secret' that Carlisle and Esme usually moved a few days earlier than the rest of the family to start things up. If they were to be enrolled in a new school, they usually did that, or got set in at their new jobs. However, after last time, they decided to not let Emmett free. This time, they were going to be travelling together.
Bella raised an eyebrow curious as to what he had done to guaranty such reaction from Esme and Carlisle. "Let's just say that road trips hold a different meaning right now. Just as public indecency." Bella looked at Edward, not necessarily for him to validate his brother's words, but in wonder. He nodded and shrugged.
"It's Emmett." He said as if that was sufficient explanation. The funny part was, that it was sufficient explanation.
What she didn't offer out loud, in fear of provoking another weird road trip, was that she was curious of how a road trip with Emmett would be, she would have died to be there, irrespective of the fact that she probably wouldn't have wanted to see the dark side of the moon, as Emmett flashed whoever glanced in their direction.
Good thing they had an eternity.
Jasper smiled amusedly at her emotions. He didn't need to read her thoughts, she said enough with her emotions. He walked towards the rented car and got in. Bella was about to follow but Edward halted her. She looked at him confused.
"We'll meet you at the airport." Alice, on the wheel, nodded and drove away, being followed by Carlisle's and Esme's rented car.
"Why are we not going with them?"
He smiled. "Because we have one last stop to make. So, we better hurry."
Their last stop turned out to be the meadow. She was going to miss it. A lot. It was their own private spot. A lot had happened there. Her first kiss. The first time she really saw him, the first time he allowed her to see him.
"What are we doing here?"
He didn't have time to make it into a romantic proposal as he would have liked. But he wanted to do it in a place that held such a sentimental value for the both of them. That's why he couldn't, or more accurately, didn't want to wait until they arrived in England.
"Originally, I had thought about candles and lights, and things like that, but that didn't appeal to me. I'm not big on grand gestures, so I thought that doing it here on this place, was romantic and meaningful enough."
At first Bella was confused. What was he talking about? But then he got on one knee, and she knew for certain what was he talking about.
Of course, her answer was yes. A million times yes.
Originally, she might have had reservations on the subject, like age, or what her parents might think, etc. But those melted away.
On the other hand, she knew that there was a lot to know about him, she had only known him for a few months. Some of those months she had spent trying to recover some blocked memories, having only recovered them recently. It all had been a whirlwind of activity, but he had remained a constant. Despite how irritating he could be at times, to how extremely sweet (and yes, sometimes cheesy) he was. But she noticed she didn't care about that. She had the eternity to know him, to learn more of his quirks, his likes and dislikes.
"Bella, I love you more than I can express into words. Would you do me the honor of becoming my wife?" He pulled out a small green box and opened it without much ado. She gasped at the beauty inside it. It looked like an antique.
"Yes." She managed to get out. He smiled hugely and slid the ring on the corresponding finger. He stood up and gathered her in his arms. She broke up the embrace giggling happily while admiring the ring. "It's so beautiful. Where did you get it?"
Edward lifted her hand and kissed the back of it, just above the ring. "It was my mother's."
"Your human mother?" She gasped surprised. Now the ring held a different meaning.
He nodded. "I have a few trinkets of hers. Carlisle managed to get them for me. It's mostly jewelry and a picture where I'm standing next to my father and behind her. It was taken weeks before the pandemic hit us." He finished with a nostalgic look.
She encased his face between her small palms. "It means so much to me that you wanted to give me your mom's ring. It's beautiful." He smiled happily at her.
His own bright star.
Their lips joined, sealing the promise and the beginning of their journey. Unfortunately, they didn't have time to celebrate. "Rain check?" He asked unnecessarily.
"Definitely." She smiled and pecked his lips again. "Let's go."
Alice was basically vibrating with excitement when she spotted Edward and Bella walking to the waiting area of their boarding gate. She was all but bouncing on her place, which made Bella laugh.
"What has you so excited Alice?" Bella asked playfully.
Alice looked at her with a tilt on her head and a raised eyebrow. She had seen the proposal; she had seen her accept it. Why was she being so… mysterious? Their interaction caught Esme's attention, who walked towards them.
"Is everything alright?"
Bella and Edward exchanged a look and he nodded. "Edward proposed, and I said yes."
Esme gasped and covered her mouth, her eyes watering with venom tears that couldn't be shed. She took a few seconds to collect herself, and when she did, she hugged Bella tightly, and then Edward.
"I'm so happy for both of you. Congratulations."
The congratulations of the rest of the family were caught short by the flight's attendant announcement that the boarding was soon to start. Even if it was a private plane, they still had to follow the air rules. Or however they are called.
Alice bombarded Bella with wedding related questions throughout the flight. And as excited as Bella could be about her coming nuptials, more than eleven hours of non-stop wedding stuff was tiring. Luckily, Jasper saved her by calling Alice's attention and setting Bella free. Edward winked at her and she laughed. He didn't need to read her mind; she was an open book. She rested her head on his shoulder and enjoyed the movie that she selected to watch.
Jasper and Emmett checked on her from time to time, to see if she was handling being confined. For a newborn, tight spaces tended to make them antsy. It was hard, but not impossible. But she had a few things she had brought in her bag to distract her from the tight space. She had brought the MacBook that Rosalie had gifted her in a peace offering gesture, in it, aside from a few movies, she had started to write a sort of journal and in parallel short stories that needed to be out of her head. They were all proud of her. She had come a long way in the short time.
Bella couldn't take all the credit, she had had an amazing support system, and she wouldn't have managed to get in a plane, however private, or go through security in the airport if wasn't for them.
Jasper played with the idea that having given her the task of going through the pictures had reconnected her brain. Sort of rewired it. Instead of having it focus on the raging thirst and overwhelming senses, it focused on the missing pieces of information and the pictures at hand. That might have made her a less…crazy (for lack of a better word) newborn.
Edward nodded to Jasper; it was a valid hypothesis. Sadly, one that they couldn't test. The rest of the flight was interesting and uneventful. Emmett was like a punished child. He had been ordered by Rosalie and Esme, to not move from his seat, to not create a scene, and to not attract attention towards them.
It had been hard enough, or more accurately, stressful enough to get Edward and Bella into the plane without anyone getting suspicious. Edward had to wear a baseball cap, different type of clothes than he would normally wear, and Alice had had fun creating certain marks on his face, such as freckles, green contact lens, and a scar above his left eyebrow that Bella found so sexy.
His passport had been another masterful manipulation done by their forger expert, Mr. Jenks. Who, according to Jasper, was scared of him. His name was Jaime McTavish (thank you Outlander, for giving Alice the surname for his brother). As for Bella, she put on some red highlights on her hair, effectively changing the aesthetics of it. Bella had agreed to cutting it a bit, so now it rested a bit above the bra line, instead of mid back (almost small back). She wore blue contacts, and Alice had found joy in dressing her very elegantly. She wasn't uncomfortable perse, just very…unused to such attires.
In addition to the changes in their physical looks, Alice had meticulously studied the future as to make sure they would not be running into anyone familiar.
It had been a faux pas, the fact that Edward had decided to propose that day before going to the airport, which made Alice's bouncy nature to redouble. It had been a slip on behalf of Esme to embrace them both in public with such emotion. But luckily, in Seattle, there was enough people hurrying around, that no one cared if they seemed familiar or not. Another thing to look forward to Europe again, people tended to mind their own business more regularly than in the US. Well, generalizing was not exactly the best way to put it. So, let's reduce it to the small town of Forks, where everyone knew everyone's business.
Bella was admittedly nervous about this new stage of their lives. She had never traveled outside the US. She was equally excited about getting to know England. This time, they chose a big city, better opportunities for Carlisle in the medical field, for Jasper in his pursue of a master's degree in criminal psychology, and a larger range of opportunities for them to stay in the city. Edward had asked Bella if she knew what she wanted to study. But she didn't know. And there was the fact that she had died before finishing high school. How was that going to be handled? Edward's answer had made her eyes roll. "Jenks and Alice."
Alice had foreseen that Bella's application for a career did, for obvious reasons, require a high school degree. And fortunately, Esme was very good at home schooling and had the credentials to do so. So, thanks to Jenks' help, Bella had a high school, home-school diploma to provide the university of her choice. Of course, her name had to be changed from Isabella Swan, to Anabella Platt. Esme's biological daughter. To say that Esme had wept was an understatement.
That's how Bella had been able to keep her nickname and enrolling into a university in London. She decided to take some general courses, like history, art, literature, just to see what appealed to her. She discovered, with no surprise at all, that she enjoyed literature, and decided to enroll in ancient literature full time. Enjoying medieval themes, etc.
While studying, she allowed Alice to help with wedding details. And by details she meant, flowers, a dress, and a location. She knew the date, she knew who she wanted to officiate, who she wanted as her maid of honor, and who she wanted to walk her down the aisle.
Logically she knew why Edward had decided to propose on their last day at Forks. They couldn't get married in Forks, someone could see them, or something could go wrong. Granted, the Cullens were very careful at subterfuge whenever they really put their efforts into it. But neither of them wanted to risk it.
Emmett had been thrilled to accept Bella's request to walk her down the aisle. Jasper was going to officiate, and Alice was her maid of honor. That left Esme to walk Edward, and Carlisle to act as his best man. Rosalie was in charge of providing the music for the small ceremony. Edward was in charge of the location (a small meadow he had found wandering around the city). It was not as secluded as the one in Forks, but it sufficed.
The date, 16 of March. The day she had first moved to Forks. That allowed the family to settle in and found their way around once more. And allowed Bella to fully comprehend the magnitude of marriage, a literal eternity with someone. Even though, every day that passed, cemented her decision.
She would do it all over again.