AN: Sorry for the crazy delay! I got transferred to a new department in the hospital, and my orienting schedule has kept me pretty busy. I actually started this chapter two weeks ago, and then got waylaid. Hopefully as I get more settled in with the new position, the updates won't be so spaced out. Anyways, thanks for sticking with me and I hope you enjoy this addition!

CHAPTER 109

EDWARD'S POV:

After the fiasco that was Halloween, I quickly learned my lesson and went into work the next day to figure out Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's. Over the years my family had gotten used to my having to work most Thanksgivings, so usually we just rescheduled and had the big family meal my next day off. According to my schedule, that would be the following Saturday. Bella said that Tony really had no concept of time, so whatever day we said was Thanksgiving would work for them. His preschool would be closed that week, so it's not like anyone would share their stories and tell him otherwise. The only hiccup she pointed out was that they liked to watch the parade together while prepping for the big meal—the balloons being a huge appeal to Tony. I asked her if she minded taping it so we could watch it together as a family, and she agreed that we would watch it Saturday morning. I think she really wanted me to be a part of the little traditions that her and Tony had together, which I appreciated. I checked with Mom, Alice, and Rosalie, and everyone was okay with celebrating two days late. Emmett joked that Rosalie still made him a turkey dinner Thursday night, so he gets two meals out of the deal. Promise him food, and Emmett would be on board with just about anything.

With Christmas, I knew I couldn't get both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day off. I wasn't the only doctor that had a kid. After talking it over with Bella, we decided Christmas Day was more important. Bella said that they did have some traditions that I would miss out on, like watching "The Muppet Christmas Carol", and baking cookies to leave for Santa. But Tony was still relatively young, and the threat that Santa can't come if little kids were still awake usually lured him to bed early. Realistically, he would be asleep for most of my shift. As long as all the presents were wrapped beforehand, Bella wouldn't have too much work to do putting everything under the tree after he'd gone to bed.

I was worried that since we had it all planned out that my request was going to be denied again. What can I say—I'm a pessimistic person. But I breathed a sigh of relief when my supervisor sent the message that my time off had been approved. What Bella didn't know was that thanks to alternating holidays, I worked last New Year's Eve, so I was slotted to be off this year. And I had plans for us to get away and just be together. I could feel myself getting hard just thinking about it.

Reacclimating myself to Bella's body has been like a full-time job—one that I took very seriously. After we reconnected that first time, things between us have only gotten better. I knew that one of my hesitations with children was that it would put a damper on one's sex life. Realistically, I've had to learn to curb my appetite to the bedroom only, but that hasn't limited our activities too much. I realized early on that a locked door is a must. Tony interrupted us once when Bella had gotten a little too loud in her enthusiastic moans. I remember I was mid thrust when I heard the doorknob rattling, and Tony's scared voice calling out for Bella, claiming he had a nightmare. I was disappointed our fun had been brought to an abrupt stop, but the blow job I was given the next morning eased that let down. Thankfully, it hasn't happened again because now I make sure that Bella muffles her cries—and then fully take advantage of when we have the house all to ourselves to get loud.

The only hang-up in our coupling is that Bella still doesn't feel comfortable around me to be fully nude. The first time we were together, I hadn't really questioned why she wanted the netting cover to stay on. But each time since, she's worn some type of lingerie, and freezes up when I try to remove it. Sure, the lingerie is rather exposing, and she lets me pull it down to have access to her breasts, and up so I can get to the honey pot. Yet she never lets me remove it completely. I'm starting to think she doesn't want me to see her midriff, but I don't fully understand why. I finally decided to bite the bullet and force her to address the issue last week.

Flashback

As I slowly began to wake up, I reached across the bed to pull Bella towards me, only to be greeted with cool sheets. Startled that I was alone, I lifted my head to peruse my surroundings. In the background, I could hear the water running in the shower. Wanting to spend some more time with her before starting my next two days on at the hospital, I decided I was going to join her in the shower. I quietly made my way into the bathroom and opened the shower door. I could hear Bella humming to herself, which thankfully meant she had yet to notice my arrival. I shut the door behind me to ward off the chill, and stealthily made my way inside, wrapping my arms around her from behind. And almost instantly, I felt her freeze up in my arms.

"Edward, what are you doing?" she asked. I could hear the alarm in her voice.

"I think it's pretty obvious," I chuckled, as I nuzzled my face into her neck to plant a kiss.

"I'm finished if you want the shower," she said, trying to pull away.

"Are you sure you didn't miss a spot," I teased, pulling her back into my arms. I rubbed my hands up and down her sides to try to calm her. However, it seemed to have the opposite effect.

"Nope. All clean," she said, no joking in her response.

"Wanna get dirty with me before work? I'll make sure to clean you real good after," I asked, though from her body language I didn't think she was in the mood.

"I don't want to make you late," she said, again trying to pull herself out of my arms. This time she succeeded, and I saw that her hands immediately wrapped themselves around her, trying to shield her body from me.

Finally having enough, I questioned, "Why are you hiding yourself from me?"

"I'm not," she said, though the lie was apparent.

"Baby, you're doing it right now. And you've been doing it ever since we started being intimate again," I pointed out.

"Sorry to disappoint you," she quipped back, trying to make her way past me to get out of the shower. I blocked her exit.

"Bella, I am not disappointed. We are literally made for each other. I just don't understand why you won't be naked with me. I love you—mind, body and soul. I just want to appreciate all of you," I explained, emphasizing the word all.

"You see enough of me," she argued, refusing to make eye contact.

"Baby, I never can have enough of you," I replied. Placing my finger under her chin to raise her head up, I continued, "We said from the beginning that communication is key, but here you are not talking to me Bella. Please, can you explain what the holdup is?"

"It's not like I'm hindering our sex life by wanting to stay semi covered," she said defensively. "Unless that is the problem."

"Have I given you the impression that I am dissatisfied? I'd say things have been pretty hot between us—seriously, I barely can keep my hands off of you."

"You're just making up for the lack of sex over the last few years," she murmured. "Any sex would be fine—even bad sex."

"That's bullshit, Bella. You're saying I would respond this way for anybody? Not likely. It's hot because it's you and me." When she scoffed, I pressed on. "I told you that my lack of female companionship was self-imposed. I will admit, I have had offers over the years, but Bella? Absolutely nobody has turned me on like you do. And it's for the most mundane things. Anytime you get within close proximity to me, I get hard. I see you bite your lip, and I spring wood. The feel of your nails trailing down my neck, or in my hair—forget about it. And don't even get me started on when I see you wearing blue. That's like all systems go, I want you. Clothes on or clothes off have nothing to do with my reactions to you. I just wish you felt comfortable sharing all of you with me."

"I'm trying Edward. It's just—things aren't the way they used to be. I don't want to turn you off-" I didn't let her finish that thought.

"Baby—nothing about you could turn me off. You could be picking your nose and scratching your ass and I'd still want to bend you over and take you. And if I have led you to believe differently, then I am sorry. I am a poor excuse for a boyfriend."

"No, it's not you. It's just me, and my own insecurities," she quickly offered, obviously not liking me taking the blame.

"Why don't we work on these insecurities?" I asked her, again gesturing for her to come closer to me. I was pleased to see that she did step closer to me, but her hands were still firmly placed around her. Letting her keep her midsection covered, I reached up and cupped her breasts in my hands. "Worried about these?" I asked, swiping my thumb over her nipple.

"They're not as perky," she said with a shrug, but I could see her breath picking up in excitement from my ministration.

"Seem plenty perky to me," I said, watching her nipple harden from the attention. "And bigger than I remember," I pointed out, juggling the weight of the two breasts in my hands.

"Saggier from breast feeding," she said.

"Baby, they don't look saggy at all. And they feel pretty firm in my hands. God, they are turning me on. Can you feel how much they are turning me on," I said, stepping closer so she could feel the effect her fun bags were having on me.

"You just want to have sex," she threw back at me. Obviously, I was going to have to work harder to get through to her.

"No, your body is turning me on. I say your breasts have passed the inspection. Next?" I questioned, wanting to get to the root of the problem. I moved my hands down her body, and again felt her freeze up when I skirted to her stomach. I bypassed that for now, and went to her hips, when I finally got a response from her.

"My hips are wider," she murmured.

"I love your hourglass figure. It screams that you are all woman now. I love holding on to your hips as I pound into you," I told her, hoping to turn her negatives into positives.

"I went up two sizes," she pointed out, as if that was a deal breaker.

"And that is expected Bella. I am a doctor—I understand the changes your body went through to house a human inside of you for nine months. It's understandable that things were going to shift and move and change. Again, I think you look great now, which goes to show you that a few pounds did your body good."

Sliding my hands back up to her stomach, I laid my hands flat over hers. "Is the weight gain what has you worried about showing me your stomach?" I asked. Instead of answering, she just shrugged her shoulder. "Talk to me Bella, please. I'm trying to understand here," I begged

"That. And there are stretch marks."

"Show me," I demanded, tugging on her hands. She was hesitant at first, but finally removed the barrier. I got down onto my knees so I could have a closer look, running my fingers along her stomach, exploring the new unchartered territory. Maybe she figured I didn't know what I was looking for, as she guided my fingers to feel the raised marks. Leaning forward, I laid a kiss upon one of the marks. "Stretch marks decrease in time. The pigmentation has faded and gotten lighter next to your skin—and unless I'm feeling for them, they really don't stand out. I'm sure since you've seen them from start to finish, they are much more noticeable to you, but baby, they really aren't that bad."

"I think you're blind," she told me, figuring I was making light of her insecurities.

"I think you are just too hard on yourself. Yes, stretchmarks are like scars—they are permanent on your body. But like scars, they fade overtime. The depressions are there—I can feel them. But they practically blend into your skin. They're not something I would have noticed had you not pointed them out. And even if I did, so what? Again, it shows how hard your body worked to house Tony. How could that be a negative thing?" I asked her, caressing her stomach lovingly.

"You know I've only been with you. It's hard for me not to worry that you are comparing me to the Bella you once knew, and not the Bella you are saddled with now," she whispered.

"I'm not saddled with anything Bella. I finally have you back in my life, back in my arms—hell, back in my bed. I'm not comparing you to the Bella you once were. We both have grown and changed and matured in our absences. Should I be worried that you are comparing me to the Edward you once knew? I certainly would hope not. I'm doing everything in my power to prove to you that I am not that asshole anymore."

"I sometimes get stuck in my head worrying that everything is just going to fall apart, and you're going to wish you didn't wait for me," she confessed, causing my heart to break a little.

"I'm sorry that you still have doubts about us. I'm trying to show you that I've changed, and that I want this—I want you guys to with me always. I know that I'm not perfect and I will make mistakes, but as long as I'm trying, I know that we're going to be okay in the end. Bella, I need you to try here too. Try to let go of those insecurities, and nagging voices that are attempting to pull you away from us. Away from our happiness."

"I'll try Edward. It doesn't mean that I'm going to be prancing around stark naked, but I'll try to not rely on the nightgowns as much to hide my trouble areas."

"Baby, I just want you to do whatever makes you comfortable. Nothing about this body repulses me. And I hope that eventually you will be comfortable enough to prance around stark naked. God, what an image that is giving me. I can just imagine coming home from work, and heading into the kitchen and seeing you making dinner in nothing," I shared, caressing her skin to emphasize the parts I'd like to see.

"Naked cooking isn't very practical. Being naked would mean no barriers, and knowing me, I'd burn myself on oil or something," Bella rationalized. At least she was willing to joke with me.

"Okay how about just an apron then to cover the important bits?" I jested, pleased to see she wasn't completely turning my ideas down.

"Maybe I'll get there—just give me time, okay?" she asked me.

"Sure baby. I'm sorry I interrupted your shower. I won't bother you again," I told her, leaning forward to press a chaste kiss on her lips.

"You didn't ruin it. Your actions prove that you love me—all of me—even the bad parts. It's nice to know that you desire me."

"Again, I see no bad parts. I love all of you Bella. And I will spend the rest of my life proving that fact to you."

"I'm starting to realize that. I'd love to shower with you again sometime soon—I just don't think there is enough hot water or time to explore that option more today," she explained. I think she was still looking for an out, but I'll take what I can get.

"Mmm, shower sex. Now that unleashes a whole slew of new ideas and images," I told her, moving down to slowly stroke myself.

"I'll leave you to your fantasies," she told me, finally making her way past me.

"The reality would be better," I called over my shoulder.

"Soon," was the response I got as she exited the shower, leaving me to take care of my predicament.

Bella was right in her assessment that things wouldn't magically change due to that one shower. However, I have noticed that in the throes of passion, she has been more willing to remove all the barriers between us once she's worked up enough. I'm hoping that a few more worshiping sessions, and I'll have her body confident as opposed to body conscious.


"Yo Cullen, you ready for lunch?" I heard from behind me. Turning, I saw Felix and Garrett heading my way. Checking on the patients I was signed up for, I saw I wasn't too far behind on my charting. I just needed to check in on my newest patient, but then I could spare a few minutes to catch up with my friends.

"I have one more that I need to access and get meds to. Let me square that away, and tell them I'm leaving the floor. I'll meet you guys down in the cafeteria in about 10 minutes," I told them.

"More like 20," Garett joked, knowing that once a patient starts talking about what brought them in to the ER today, it's hard to get them to shut up.

"You're probably right. But that'll give Demetri time to join us," I pointed out, realizing we were down a member of our group.

"You two will probably get there around the same time—he just got out of surgery when we swung by his floor," Felix explained.

"I'm sure I'll beat him there," I said. "Dem will have to style his hair just right after his post-clean up. It could be an hour before he shows."

"You would know—you're prissy about your locks as well, Ed," Felix zinged my way.

"You're only delaying me by staying here chatting me up, Lix. Go see what the offerings are today. If the food sucks, text me and I'll meet you elsewhere," I told them, as I made my way down the hall towards my patient's room.

15 minutes later, I had medicine and labs ordered, and I was on my way down to the cafeteria. Thankfully it wasn't meatloaf day, and Garett said there was enough of a variety to make it work. And wouldn't you know, I still managed to make it down there before Demetri.

"Told you I'd beat him," I said, after buying my burger and joining the table.

"What do you want? A prize?" Garrett razzed me, stuffing some fries into his mouth. "It was a given you'd get here before him."

"I got held up," Dem said, making his way over to the table. "Chelsea was trying to stake her claim after she saw Heidi chatting me up in the break room."

"I told you not to sleep with her, Dem. Chelsea isn't going to be down for just some fun. She's into relationships," Felix lectured.

"I told her that wasn't for me. I ain't looking to settle down. She said that was fine, and then I rocked her world, and we all moved on," Dem quipped.

"I know what she told you. But I'm telling you that it doesn't compute for her. She's gonna manipulate you and any potential flings you have to get what she wants," Felix cautioned.

"What do you mean?" Dem asked, the frown on his face showing he wasn't pleased with what he was being told.

"I saw her do it with Caius. He was trying to get with that chick, Dora, or whatever, and Chelsea scared her off. She's batshit crazy," Felix explained.

"How did she scare her off?" I asked, never hearing this before.

"I don't know exactly—I just know what Kate told Irina," he explained. We all turned to look at Garrett. Since Kate was his girlfriend, we figured he would have the scoop.

"Kate said that Chelsea spread rumors that Caius had a bad case of Gonorrhea and critiqued his performance as below par to scare off any new conquests. I think she was hoping Caius would be desperate enough to return to her, however he was too pissed to revisit that ship," Garrett clarified.

"Well, Chelsea needs to take a chill pill, and leave me be. The sex with her wasn't even worth a repeat— and I'm rarely down for leftovers. I'm looking for someone new to wet my whistle. So, are we going out this weekend?" Dem asked the group.

"I'm in," Felix said immediately. He was never one to turn down a night out on the town.

"Kate is away this weekend with her sisters, so I'm free, but within reason. I'm not looking to get into too much trouble," Garrett warned.

"How about you Cullen?" Felix asked.

"Tony has his first Tee ball game Saturday. I don't want to drink too heavily the night before, so I think I'm going to have to pass."

"Of course," I heard Dem mutter.

Not liking his tone, I asked, "Excuse me?"

"Now that you have your ball and chain, you aren't up for any fun. I didn't realize Bella was such a buzz kill," he stated.

"Bella has nothing to do with this," I countered, but Dem didn't let me continue.

"She has everything to do with this. Before her, you came out with us every weekend. You hung out, drank, and had a good time. Sure, you never partook in the fishing for women, but that worked fine for us. Your rejection made them ours for the taking. We helped ease your dismissals, and the three of us got laid plenty. You were like the perfect wingman, and now you are leaving us hanging," he argued.

"She isn't the one telling me not to go out. I just don't see the point anymore. Why would I want to drink away my sorrows when my happiness sits at home?" I threw back at him.

"I swear this a case of body snatchers or something. You remember that sci fi documentary we watched, Lix? About aliens taking over someone's body, and on the outside, no one could tell except the personalities had changed some. That's Cullen to a tee. He went to that sticks of a town, and came back as one of the guys we used to make fun of." His declaration brought a laugh out of Felix, so I guess he agreed with him. Seeing his statement was getting the response he wanted, Dem continued. "Remember Dylan? He used to come out with us all the time too, until he settled down with that chick he met at the club. What was her name? The leggy one?"

"Amber?" Felix added.

"Yes, her. He met her one night, then after a weekend of screwing, he no longer could come out to play with us. He was so freaking whipped, he needed to check with her before he wiped his own ass," Dem said. "Cullen's no better."

I turned my attention to Garrett, since he wasn't adding anything to the discussion to get his opinion on the matter. "You agree with this shit?"

"I've got a girl at home too, Cullen, so I've never been one to go out as often as the three of you did. But I still manage to make it every other month or so. You haven't been out with us since February," he pointed out. "And being that Thanksgiving is just around the corner, that's almost a year."

I sat there and tried to refute his claim, but I had nothing. Ever since going to Forks in March and moving Tony and Bella back to Chicago with me, my attention has been singularly focused on making my relationship with Bella work. First, it was all about her recovery. Then it was about forging a relationship with my son to make us a true family. That involved a lot of quality time between the three of us, as well as my extended family. And finally, it was about showing Bella that I wasn't the same man I was five years ago, and to trust me with her heart. I really hadn't had time for other things outside of the little bubble we had created, which my friends are so eloquently pointing out now.

"He's too good for us now," Felix stated, wanting to get in on the bashing.

"I'm not too good. I just have had other things to worry about. I didn't realize that things had gotten so bad," I explained.

"How could you not have noticed? This is the first lunch the four of us have managed to coordinate together in months. Sure, you'd see one of us here and there, but never the whole group. Didn't you notice that?" Felix pressed, rubbing salt in the wound.

Before I was able to answer him, Demetri flat out asked, "You gonna grow a set and come out with us Friday? Hell, you could even bring your piece along too if that would make it easier for you. It's not like you've introduced us to her."

"She's not a piece, and I'd appreciate it if you wouldn't refer to her that way. And its Bella. You know her from before," I pointed out.

"I wasn't around for the love-fest back then. I met you guys after med school, when you were already emo-Edward," Dem countered.

"I knew of her, but you never brought her around me," Felix refuted. "Probably because you were worried I was going to steal her away from you with my charm."

"What charm? Felix your ass is jealous of the amount of shit that is coming out of your mouth," Garrett quipped back.

"So, what's it gonna be Cullen?" Dem goaded, obviously not wanting to get too far off topic.

"Can I get back to you?" I asked, not wanting to agree to something without checking with Bella first.

"Be a man Cullen. You don't have to check with your woman about your schedule. Ask Garrett."

Turning to look at the only other person in a relationship at the table, I didn't have to wait long. "Women like it when you keep them informed. You don't need to ask for permission—tell her you're going out Friday, then ask if she'd like to accompany you. It still lets her feel like she had some control in the decision, and lets you keep your balls intact."

I hoped I wasn't making the wrong decision, but I nodded my head to show that I was onboard.

"We're going out," Dem crowed, causing several people from the surrounding tables to glance our way.

"Don't get too excited. I bet you $100 dollars Chelsea shows up and keeps all the girls away from you," Felix taunted.

"Then we'll keep it on the downlow," Demetri refuted.

"You just announced it to the packed cafeteria. I wouldn't be surprised if someone is tweeting about this right now," Garrett added, razzing on Dem more.

"Whatever. With Cullen there, there will be plenty of turned down pussy ready for me to swoop in and build their confidences back up," Dem rationalized.

"So, you only can handle my rejects," I teased. "This must have been a bad dry spell for you then. No wonder you had to resort to Chelsea."

"I do fine on my own, thank you very much," Demetri said, but both Felix and Garrett coughed 'Bullshit' under their breaths, proving that the group of us drew more women in than Demetri on his own. "And Chelsea was just a moment of weakness after a night of drinking too much. I won't make that mistake again."

"I guess we'll see this weekend," Felix said, and with that last taunt, the subject moved on to catching up.

I really enjoyed myself during that lunch, making me realize that I had in fact missed spending time with my friends. I needed to find a better balance in my life that included more than just my family. These last few months, I had been learning how to master being a father, and a boyfriend, all while working my normal crazy hours. Now I had to figure out how to be a better friend, and not let commitments such as nights out lag due to the newness of my instant family. I decided that I was going to have to hash some things out with Bella when I got home. Hopefully she wouldn't mind my deciding to have a night out. Otherwise, I'm going to kick Garrett's ass for misleading me.


The ER slowed down, and due to census being low, I was allowed to leave early. I figured this was a blessing in disguise, because now I had time to do something nice to butter Bella up before springing my plans for Friday on her. I swung by the flower shop on my way home, and though I don't often pay too much attention to flowers and their meanings, I got her a bouquet with anthuriums in it. The lady said that they were flowers that can attract good luck, especially in relationships. I was certainly sold.

When I came home, I found a strangely quiet house. The car in the driveway meant Bella was home, and by default Tony—or at least they should be. I went upstairs and changed, looking into Tony's room, and our room, and still hadn't come across anyone. A distant squeal could be heard, drawing my attention to the window outside. And there was Tony, running around the backyard with his faithful companion Sophia not far behind. Closer inspection found Bella sitting on the deck, watching the two chase what appeared to be some type of bug. Grasshoppers maybe since it was too early for fireflies? I quickly finished getting changed, then made my way outside to announce my arrival.

I plopped myself down on the bench next to Bella, startling her from her guard duty. "Hey you, I got you something," I said, pulling the flowers out from behind my back.

"Flowers huh?" Bella asked, bringing the bouquet to her nose so she could get a whiff. "What did you do?" she asked.

"What do you mean? Can't I just buy the girl I love some flowers?" I pointed out.

"I hate when you spend money on me, so no, you can't. And it isn't my birthday, or any anniversary that I'm aware of. So that leaves you in the doghouse, trying to butter me up," she explained with a smile on her face.

"I'm not in the doghouse—but maybe I am trying to butter you up," I conceded.

"For what? Shower sex?" she teased.

"If that is on the table, then sure. We'll go with that," I teased back.

"As you can see, we have our hands full with two little ones, so unfortunately, it's not an option right now. Raincheck," she explained. "What's the real reason then?"

"You remember Garrett, Felix, and Demetri?" I asked her, figuring I would start there.

"The first two, sure. Demetri I've only heard of from your explanation of what's been going on in your life these last few years," she said, confirming what Demetri said earlier.

"Well, they've been on my case about my not coming out with them anymore. I wanted to tell them they were wrong, but they pointed out that the last time I hung out with them was before I came to Forks. I guess I didn't realize I had been a shitty friend recently."

"You haven't been a shitty friend, Edward. You've just been trying to juggle a lot of new things, and sometimes relationships take a backseat. I'm sorry that we took you away from you friends."

"No, baby. You guys didn't do that. I just haven't been managing all aspects of my life as well as I thought I was. Anyways, the guys are going out this Friday, and they want me to come. I originally tried to get out of it since Tony's first game is Saturday, but if I don't drink too much, I should be able to do both," I explained.

"Definitely. And his game isn't until 2pm, so you have plenty of time to sleep off a hangover if you do overindulge," she pointed out.

"So, you'd be okay if I went out then?" I questioned.

"Baby, I'm not your gatekeeper. You're a grown man. You're allowed to have friends and go out and have fun. Just because we're together doesn't mean that we have to be attached at the hip at all times."

"I take that to mean you wouldn't want to come too?" I asked, sadly disappointed by the fact. I wanted to show her off.

"You just said it's been months since you've had a night out with the guys. I don't want to intrude. And before you claim that I won't, I will baby. I do want to meet your friends and go out some time, but I think I'm going to sit this one out, and let you ease your way back into the nightlife."

"It won't' be that crazy. I doubt I'll stay for more than 2 or 3 drinks," I justified.

"I trust you. Go, have fun with your friends. And then you're all mine Saturday."

"Oh really?" I asked, intrigued.

"Yeah, I'm, or I guess, we're watching Sophia tonight for Alice and Jasper so they can have a romantic evening alone. To repay us, they're taking Tony Saturday. I get the best of both worlds this weekend—time with my little boy in the morning, and time with my favorite man in the evening."

"Do you want to go out Saturday, or stay in?" I asked her, nuzzling the crook of her neck, which is my favorite spot.

"Leave Saturday's plans to me. Let me be the one to surprise you for a change," she said.

"Mm, sounds like you've got it all figured out."

"Not everything. We've been outside all afternoon, and I haven't even thought about dinner tonight. So, that's all on you big guy. Go let those fingers do some dialing, and order us up some grub," Bella giggled.

"All I'm good for is take out, huh? What if I wanted to make dinner, hmm?" I asked, tickling her sides to elicit more giggles.

"Feel free to slave away in the kitchen. I just figured you would be more inclined to sit here with me than spend the next hour chopping and flavoring and mixing alone in the kitchen," she told me.

"Well, when you put it that way, take out sounds divine. Any preference?" I asked her, kissing her forehead before standing up.

"I'm kind of in the mood for sushi, but I don't think Tony or Sophia would be up for that. We could always save that for Saturday," Bella said.

"Why don't we order from the hibachi place? They have sushi, as well as Japanese foods that the kids would eat. Fried rice, teriyaki chicken, shrimp skewers," I offered, wanting her to get what she was craving.

"Sold," Bella said, before telling me the kind of rolls she wanted to order. I took her flowers inside to put into a vase before dialing out for the food. As the phone rang, I couldn't help but get excited for this upcoming weekend. I could have both guys night and family day in the same weekend, and keep all my relationships happy. Maybe I could really have it all.