Happy holidays! This outtake... or futuretake... is written, courtesy of Pinkquaclouds, because it was her idea. It is also my Christmas/holidays gift to all of you guys for being so wonderful.
Also, this is kind of like a glimpse into a sequel, whether it's a snippet sequel or a regular one.
Regardless, I hope you all have a wonderful weekend and a happy new year! :)
"No, show me the other one," I said again.
The guy behind the counter gave me an annoyed look and put the little necklace back under the glass. I didn't care, really. It was his job to put up with people like me. Besides, he just didn't understand how important this was.
"What exactly are you looking for, sir?" he asked, and I could tell he was trying to keep his tone polite.
I sighed and rubbed the stubble on the side of my face. "I don't know; that's the problem. I want it to be special, but I don't know how to make it special. I don't want it to just be something she'll wear from time to time and then forget about. It needs to have meaning."
The man, whose electric nametag pin read "Eli", cleared his throat. "You know sir, my job would be made a lot easier if you told me who this gift was for. I'm guessing… girlfriend?"
"Nah, I've already gotten something for my wife. It's for my daughter."
The man perked up right away. "Oh! That's nice, how old is she? Four? Five?"
He raised a brow at me. "Seven… months?"
I shrugged and nodded, wondering what the big deal was. Did it really matter what age she was now if she'd have it (hopefully) for the rest of her life?
He stared at me like I had ten fucking eyes. "Look, sir, I don't know if-"
"Yeah, I know she's a baby," I cut him off impatiently. "I get it. It needs to be something she'll have forever, though. From her first Christmas and onwards."
"Children tend to keep childhood stuffed animals-"
"She's already got a shitload of toys. Why are you arguing with me? Just show me something nice and take my fucking money."
I was reaching my wit's end and this man wasn't helping.
It was Annabelle's first Christmas and even though I had already gotten her an unreasonable amount of toys, most of which she wouldn't even be able to play with until she was older, I wasn't satisfied.
There needed to be something meaningful, something special. Something that would remind her that her parents loved her, and always would, even when we weren't around.
Toys and stuff was fine, but she'd grow out of those at some point. She needed something that she'd be able to have from the age of 1 to the age of 101.
That's when I thought about jewelry. I wasn't leaning towards diamonds or gold or anything, but it needed to be something timeless, classic, and delicate. Something for a little lady.
I ran a frustrated hand through my hair and rested my elbows on the counter. "Help me out, mate. It's Christmas Day, and I don't mean to give you a hard time and shit, but this is really fucking important to me."
Eli stared at me and sighed. "Look, we don't sell jewelry for babies. If it's something you want her to have forever, then it'll have to be limited to a necklace, maybe a locket, or a bracelet of some kind."
I rubbed my chin again and just as I was about to speak, my phone started buzzing.
"Hang on a sec," I told Eli. "Hello?"
"Hey babe," Bella's soft voice filtered through from the other side. "Where are you?"
"Still at the jeweler's," I sighed.
"You know that's not necessary. She doesn't even know it's Christmas."
"Yeah, I know, but… I dunno, it just won't feel right unless I get something really, really, special."
"You spoil her."
"And there will be other Christmases."
"Yeah, but this'll be her only first Christmas."
"All right, all right," I could hear Bella's smile and then I heard baby noises in the background, followed by a thump.
I instinctively smiled. "What's Banannie up to?"
"Dropping her sippy cup on the floor as usual. Hmm, I think she needs a diaper change. Hey, be quick, okay? Alice and Jasper will be here soon, and I think Emmett just pulled up with the fam."
"Give me like half an hour, I'll be there."
There was another thump and Bella sighed again."Oh, Annie Bannanie, you wear me out. Okay, babe, see you soon. Love you."
"Love you too."
We hung up and then I turned back to the counter, my eyes suddenly falling on the perfect thing.
I pulled the car up into our small cement driveway, spotting Emmett's car as well as Jasper's. I sighed as I climbed out, knowing that the scene that would greet me the second I walked in would be chaotic.
Sure enough, when I opened the door to our modest little home I was greeted by loud laughter, belonging to both children and adults.
Something small collided with my right leg and I looked down to see a tiny head of blonde hair clinging to me.
"Uncle Edward, I gots you!" he said, and I laughed, reaching down to ruffle Gavin's hair. He was Emmett and Rosalie's second son, only four years old, and he was fucking adorable.
"Is that so?" I teased, picking him up and tickling him til he squirmed with laughter. "No, I think I've got you now, haven't I?"
I laughed and deposited Gavin into Emmett's arms. He and Jasper were sitting and laughing with Charlie, who was sitting on one of the couches. "Happy Christmas, mate."
Emmett threw a squealing Gavin over his shoulder as we all chatted for a bit before I found Rosalie, hugging her and their sever year old, Ethan, from where they took pictures by the Christmas tree.
"Hey Uncle Edward, you promised you'd take me on your motorcycle today, remember?" Ethan said hopefully.
I grimaced slightly at him, pointedly looking at his mother, but my warning came too late.
"You what?" Rose said, glaring at me. "Edward, you had better not have."
"Please, mom?" Ethan said, looking up at her with Emmett's eyes. He needed a haircut; his brown curls were hanging in his eyes.
Rose brushed them aside. "No motorcycle."
"Where's Bella and Alice?" I asked Rose, and she nodded over her shoulder to the kitchen.
I couldn't stand the miserable look on Ethan's face so as I passed I leaned down and whispered in his ear, "Later, okay?"
He grinned up at me and I winked.
Bella had her back to me with Annie in her arms as she spoke to a very pregnant Alice. She and Jasper were expecting their first child, a girl, and Alice was about to explode any second.
Alice caught my eye and smiled slightly as she continued to talk to Bella with one hand resting on her bulging stomach.
I snuck up on Bella and she jumped as my arms encircled her waist.
"God, you scared me," she laughed as I kissed the top of my baby girl's bald head. Something dinged and she handed an irritated baby to me. "That's the ham. Here, take Annie, she's fussing."
"What's the matter?" I cooed to Annie as she started to cry. "Those stupid teeth are giving you a hard time, aren't they?"
I stuck my finger into her mouth and let her bite on it to relieve the pain from her teething. Her cries calmed down and she cuddled into my chest as I held her and rocked her slightly with my lips pressed to the top of her head. I hated to see her in pain; it broke my fucking heart. Unfortunately, there wasn't anything I could do about it, other than let her stick things in her mouth.
Alice was watching us with a smile on her face and tears in her eyes.
"You're not teething too, are you?" I asked in mock horror. "Because there's no way in hell I'm giving you my finger."
Alice laughed and wiped a tear away. She had her hair longer now. "No, it's just the hormones. I never would have thought that Edward Cullen would be such a softie. Edward Cullen with a baby in his arms and a finger in her mouth! Never in my wildest dreams…"
She sniffed again and I smiled, looking down at my baby as she bit and sucked on my finger. Her cheeks were tear-stained and she was drooling all over me, but it didn't gross me out. Yeah, so her drool was getting on my leather jacket, but I didn't care. She was in less pain, and that was all I cared about.
I knew what Alice meant by not believing that I'd ever be holding a baby in my arms. Not just any baby, but my baby.
I really couldn't figure out why I ever hated kids so much.
Sometimes they annoyed the fuck out of me still, but not my kid.
My kid was perfect in my eyes.
Christmas was chaotic, but that was how I liked it.
This was the very first time that Christmas was done at our house, and although the preparation for it had been stressful, it was completely worth it.
We all sat around the dining room table and it was… loud.
Annie was banging her frozen teething ring against the table of her high chair, Gavin and Ethan were always talking in their loud child voices, Emmett and Edward were joking about something, Alice was being hormonal/emotional with Jasper, and Charlie and Rose were laughing about something.
It was the kind of environment I loved to be in. It was love and happiness and family. It was perfect.
I elbowed Edward to get his attention and he looked down at me.
"You never told me what you got at the jeweler's," I said. "Did you find something?"
"That's right," Edward said, patting the inside of his leather jacket. "I guess I'll show it to you later."
"I still don't understand why you got jewelry for a baby."
He leaned down and kissed me. "It's not just for the baby, it's for the toddler and the child and the preteen and the teenager and then the woman."
I cocked my head to one side, a little confused. "Really, now?"
He grinned and reached over me to wipe drool off of Annie's face with her bib. "Yep."
"Pass me some more ham!" Emmett's voice boomed across the table and I was momentarily distracted by the commotion.
I sighed contentedly and shut the door on Rosalie's back as she headed back to the car with her kids. It had been a pleasant Christmas, from the morning we opened presents to when Gavin and Ethan both fell asleep by the fireplace and Alice burst into tears while staring at their sleeping faces.
"Bella, she won't sleep," Edward's exasperated voice rang out from the stairs and I saw him standing in the middle of it with his finger in the baby's mouth again.
I sighed and walked up to them. "Give her to me. Let me try."
Annie fussed even more when I reached for her, and she clung to Edward, starting to cry.
Yeah, definitely a daddy's girl.
"Where's her pacifier?" Edward asked, walking down the stairs. "My finger's going numb."
"Check the coffee table."
"Never mind, she's fine now," he said, plopping down on the couch with the baby on his lap. "Hey come here, will you? Let me do this while she's calm."
I sat down next to him and wiped more drool off Annie's mouth before he nodded downward.
"My left pocket, on the inside."
I reached into his jacket, purposefully running my hand over his nipple, and pulled out a medium-sized box in a plastic bag.
I reached in and pulled the little velvet box out, hesitating before popping it open.
"Don't you think you should give this to her when she's older? To get her reaction?"
Edward shrugged. "I know she won't remember, but I kind of want to give it to her now. We're going to pack it up until next year, anyway. We'll just keep packing it away until she's old enough to keep it."
"I'm confused. We show her the same thing every year?"
"Well it won't really be the same thing every year. Open it."
I flipped the lid and saw a delicate charm bracelet with a single charm hanging from it. It was a tiny crystal heart that sparkled in the light.
"Wow," I gasped. "This is beautiful."
Edward grinned my favorite crooked smile; it had only gotten more dazzling over the years.
"Yeah? I figured that every year she'd get a new charm. They'll be different every time. I'm thinking there will be eighteen charms in total… signs of our love as we raise her."
I could feel the tears well up in my eyes and the thoughtfulness of it all overwhelmed me. "Oh, Edward, that's a beautiful idea."
He sighed and pressed his lips to Annie's head, her eyes closing as she slowly fell asleep against his shoulder.
"For a beautiful girl," he whispered.
I sniffed and took the charm bracelet, lifting Annie's limp little arm and putting the charm bracelet on her. Of course it was too big, but just seeing it on her made me smile.
I rested my head against Edward's shoulder and fingered the bracelet around Annie.
"She's going to love it," I whispered.
Edward put a finger under my chin and lifted my head so he could kiss me. He ran his tongue over my bottom lip before tugging on it with his teeth and I couldn't suppress a moan.
"Shhh," he said, kissing the corner of my mouth. "You'll wake the baby."
"Let's put her to bed."
He slowly stood up and transferred Annie to my arms as we headed up the stairs and into her nursery. Once she was safe and sound in her crib and the baby monitor was on, we headed back to our bedroom.
I stopped outside of our room and looked up at the doorframe, where mistletoe had been hung.
Edward smirked at me and I put my hands on my hips.
"What is this, Mr. Cullen?"
Edward put his hands in his pockets, and rocked back and forth on his heels. "Well, Mrs. Cullen, I do believe that is a plant."
I raised an eyebrow and grabbed his jacket, pulling him towards me. "What kind of plant?"
"Mistletoe," he whispered, his breath caressing my face.
"Did you put it there?"
"What if I did?"
"Well, you're going to have to make good use of it."
Suddenly he pushed me against the doorframe with his hips. "Oh, I intend to."
I giggled as his lips ran across my neck and every single one of my nerves was on fire.
"Happy Christmas, babe," he said against my skin.