Days turned into weeks, and soon it was a new year. He knew Rose was doing this out of some convoluted revenge scheme, but could never convince Bella. For this reason, Edward was shocked when he arrived at Bella’s apartment early one evening and found her so angry, she was practically breathing fire.
“She’s been staying with Emmett!” she fumed. “All this time. Can you believe it?”
“How do you know?”
“Jasper was over there last night. He mentioned to Alice that Em had a female house guest. It has to be Rose.”
Bella was livid, and not only because Emmett had managed to put one over on her. Even though she was never in love with Emmett—even though technically it didn’t matter—she couldn’t help but be hurt that Rose was living with Emmett when Bella had not spent a single night at his apartment in all the time they dated.
“What’s his address?” Edward asked.
As soon as he had directions, he was out the door. When he arrived at Emmett’s building, he was grateful to find the doorman distracted. He breezed right by him and into an elevator. Minutes later, he was banging on Emmett’s door. It wasn’t long before Rose answered.
She rolled her eyes when she saw him. “If you want your ring back that badly, you could have just served me with papers.”
“Do you really think that’s what this is about?”
“What else could it be? I saw your suitcase before we went to the hospital. I know you were going to leave me.”
“I was planning to move out, yes, but let’s be real here. We both left the relationship months before that.”
Rose crossed her arms defensively. “Why are you even here?”
“We’ve known each other for over a decade. I may have fallen out of love with you, but I still care…”
“You don’t care how I feel. You just want closure so you can move on with Bella. Well, allow me to give it you.”
She gestured Edward inside before hurrying off to the back of the apartment. She returned seconds later, holding her engagement ring.
“Here.” She thrust it toward him. “Consider the matter closed.”
Edward knew she’d be angry—with everything she lost, she certainly had reason to be. But he never expected her to be so cold.
“I don’t give a fuck about the ring.” He pushed her hand away. “I just want to talk about our baby.”
“You mean my baby.”
“No, I mean our baby. I lost a baby, too.”
Rose’s laughter was cold, even for her. “You honestly think it was yours?”
Edward stood before her, speechless.
“Why are your surprised? Our relationship was dead for months; you’ve admitted this yourself. Add to it all the nights I didn’t come home and my current living arrangement, well, it doesn’t take an Ivy League education to read the signs that are right in front of you.”
“Emmett?” he asked.
“Ding ding ding! We have a winner. Take it.” Rose pressed her engagement ring into Edward’s hand, seething. “Now get the fuck out.”
As soon as Edward was in the hallway, Rose slammed the door and threw herself against it. She’d thought her lie would somehow even the score—it was something she could take from him in exchange for everything he’d taken from her. Yet it left her feeling emptier than she had before. For the second time in as many months, Rose allowed herself to cry.
As Edward walked back to Bella’s apartment, he wanted to be angry. Anger would have been healthier; many a positive end result has been born from anger. As much as he willed that emotion upon himself, it didn’t come. He was hurt, even crushed. He felt betrayed. And worst of all, he felt like he’d wasted too much fucking time.
The second Bella opened her door, his hands were on the skin of her shoulders left bare by her camisole. His face was blotchy and his eyes were red. It was obvious he was upset; Bella just wasn’t sure by what. Where Rose was involved, there could be any number of possible scenarios.
“What happened?” she asked.
He shook his head and kicked the door closed behind him. Cupping her face in his hands, he pressed his forehead against hers.
“Tell me to stop and I will.”
Thankfully, Bella didn’t make him wait long before she closed the small distance between them. Her hands found his hair and she pressed her body against him.
“Don’t ever stop,” she whispered before pressing her mouth to his.
He gasped, unable to believe this was happening, despite the fact it had been months in the making. But when her tongue brushed past his lips to touch his own, he could no longer deny this was truly happening. That was, until Bella put her hands on his chest and pushed him away.
He was about to apologize for being so forward when her hands found the hem of her shirt and pulled it over her head. After discarding it onto the floor, she untied the drawstring of her lounge pants and they soon followed suit. She stood before him—naked except for a pair of plain white cotton panties that were so obviously not meant to be sexy that somehow they were. He marveled at her natural beauty. Her full breasts were pale in a way that made the flush of her nipples that much more pronounced. Her waist was small, and her hips were round. She was far lovelier than he’d imagined.
For the second time that day, Edward was speechless.
Bella moved toward him and began to unbutton his coat. “I love you. You love me. Haven’t we waited long enough?”
After she pushed the coat off his shoulders, he quickly pulled his sweater and t-shirt over his head. Bella ran her fingertips over his chest.
“You have no idea how much I wanted to do this that first night. It took everything I had to behave. I wanted to touch you, to lick you…” Her tongue darted out of her mouth and traced the perimeter of his nipple as her hands began to work on the fly of his jeans. “And when you got hard, I could see it—a tiny silver of skin where your cock pushed your boxers open. I wanted to touch it, to suck it. I don’t even like doing that, you know. But I wanted to do it to you.”
She pushed his jeans and underwear down his legs and his erection sprang free. She wrapped her hand around his length and ran her thumb over the tip, spreading his precum around before raising her hand back to her mouth.
“Mmm,” she said, sucking her thumb.
Though he was more than a little surprised at how brazen she was, Edward wasted no time in kicking off his shoes and discarding what was left of his clothing. He picked Bella up and carried her to her room, where he placed her on her feet beside the bed.
“Promise me something,” he said.
“Promise me you won’t fake it.”
Her eyes widened, and she looked almost afraid. “On one condition.”
He repeated her earlier answer. “Anything.”
“Promise me you won’t be gentle.”
“Oh, so the lady likes it rough.” He leaned forward and nipped her ear. “I was raised to give the lady I love exactly what she asks for.”
More aroused than she’d ever thought possible, she fell backward onto the bed. Lifting her hips, she pushed her panties over her bottom and down her legs before letting them fall open. Edward licked his lips at the realization that momentarily, he would be licking hers. He lifted her foot and kissed his way up her leg, stopping to suck her inner thigh. Just when Bella thought he’d never touch her where she needed it most, he pushed two fingers inside her, and moved his tongue to her clit.
“Can you suck it?” she whispered.
Not long after he complied, her gasps became moans.
“So close,” she panted.
It wasn’t long before she came undone, her words no longer intelligible. Edward slid up her body, stopping only to taste her nipple before settling his hips between her thighs. The moment she opened her eyes, he plunged into her.
She was hot and tight, and if the way her walls spasmed around his cock was any indication, she’d kept her word. It was his turn to keep his. He pulled out almost completely before slamming into her again.
As much as he wanted to make her climax again, he knew he wouldn’t last much longer.
Still inside her, he rolled onto his back. The view of her on top of him—her tits bouncing as she rode his cock—was by far the most erotic sight he’d ever seen. He reached forward and stroked her above where they joined. Her moans intensified, and moments later he felt her tighten around him. She fell onto his chest as he released inside her. For the next several minutes, she lay against him, his hands in her hair and himself still in her.
He was the first to speak. “I think I already know the answer, but I’m going to ask anyway. Did you keep your promise?”
Bella couldn’t contain her smile. “I did. Twice, in fact. Though I should really thank you for keeping yours; it’s what enabled me to keep mine.”
Edward wanted to ask her so many questions, but they could wait for another time. He wanted to enjoy the feeling of finally holding the woman he loved, the woman he would do his best to protect against any unnecessary pain—including the fact that during the time they were dating, her ex-boyfriend impregnated his ex-fiancée. Edward wondered briefly if by not telling Bella about the paternity of Rose’s baby, he was starting their relationship with a lie. He was about to tell her, but then he remembered Bella’s fake smoking and fake orgasms—both fabrications designed to spare the feelings of others. Though a small voice inside him warned that this situation was different, he fell asleep seconds later, too content to care.
At least for the time being.