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La Musica del Cuore

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So, I started my journey into Fanfiction with my first story, La Cantante. I had never been driven to write until I read Twilight and saw the movies (and the beauty of Robert Pattinson ~ dayum, he’s one yummy guy.) Writing that first story got me through the end of my marriage and the beginning of my new life as a single woman. Now, it’s almost four years since I completed that story. I’m so sorry for the delay, but I did promise you a sequel. Here it is!

Up next will be a breeze by Nashville and their anniversary in Chicago.

Chapter Nineteen: Happy Anniversary?

EPOV

Ryan, Kellan, Agent Torres and Charlie, via Skype, came up with a very detailed plan to keep us safe and sane. However, Bella was an anxious mess from the conversation. The fear of the unknown was weighing heavily on her. Me, too, but we had to fight this battle head-on.

We stopped halfway to Nashville, about four hours into the trip. Everyone got off the bus while the gas tank was filled up. Agent Torres got into a waiting Yukon Denali, heading to the closest city to fly back to Washington D.C. He wished us luck for the rest of our tour and said he’d try his hardest to capture James and his accomplice, whoever they may be. Bella was curled up on the couch, barely keeping it together, watching the SUV drive away.

I really wanted to snap my fingers and take our strife away. “Cantante?” I asked as I sat down next to her. “How are you feeling?” I took her hand, kissing her knuckles.

“Nervous, scared,” she whispered. “I just want this to be over.”

“The tour?”

She shrugged, idly playing with her hair. “I want James caught. Then, I could actually enjoy the rest of the tour. But, until he’s gone, I’m constantly on edge and just plain terrified of my own shadow. Edward, something has to give. I don’t know how much more I can take, baby.”

“I don’t blame you, beautiful,” I said, pulling her to my side and leaning my cheek against her soft hair. “I wish I could wave my hand and all of this was fucking over.” The doors of the buses closed and the driver came back on. He smiled, giving us the privacy we needed and took off from the gas station. “Let’s just get through our performance at the Grand Ole Opry and then spend time in Chicago, relaxing and celebrating our anniversary.”

“I hope that Pandora is doing a thorough sweep of our home in Chicago. I want to be able to stay there without fear of being …” she trailed off, her face paling. “What if he put cameras in our house, Edward?”

“You heard Ryan. He’s got a team watching all our properties and there has been no suspicious activity anywhere, but the house will be swept. Senior is meeting the team to check the brownstone. They’re going now and checking again just prior to our arrival,” I said, tracing her cheek with my finger. She pressed into my hand and moved so she was snuggled next to me. “I know that the pictures and videos rattled you, Bella.” She gave me a glare. “It more than rattled me.” I held up my hand, which was still encased in a cast.

“I’m just … this sucks,” she grumbled, burying her face into my chest.

“I know, Bella. Believe me, I know,” I muttered, holding her closely. “Come on. Let’s lay down. Our sleep the past few days have been lackluster at best.”

“No funny business,” Bella chided, getting up and walking to the rear of the bus. We settled on the queen-sized bed. Bella fell asleep quickly, draped across my chest. I idly played with her hair until I drifted off. When we woke up, we were pulling into Nashville. Upon our arrival, we checked into the hotel and spent the night with Emmett and Kellan. Nia was giving Bella space since my wife was still pissed off at her for the off-handed comment she’d made. With Nia staying away, Jasper stayed with her. They used the separation from us to go out on a date.

While hanging out with Kellan and Emmett, we Skyped to Alice and my adoptive mother. Alice looked better, but she was still anxious that her new medications would not work well. I could tell by her rapid talking and nervous fidgeting. Kellan eventually took the iPad with a smile, ducking into his suite to talk to Alice.

“Do you think Alice will join us in Milwaukee?” Emmett asked, leaning back and sipping his Coke. “She seemed all out of sorts.”

“Alice is determined,” I answered. “She’s just … freaking out.”

“I think we all are,” Bella snorted, popping a fry into her mouth. “It manifested itself with her mental illness. Me, too. I mean, my anxiety is at an all-time high. I don’t want to take my medications, but the idea of having them puts my mind at ease.”

“And you’re still not a hundred percent, Isabelly,” Emmett said, arching a brow. “You’re awfully pale, sis.”

“Just tired, Emmett and don’t call me Isabelly,” she chided, tossing a fry at her brother. He caught it with his mouth. “You’re such a pig, Emmett.”

“I don’t like to waste food,” he laughed, but sobered quickly. “Are you guys okay? I mean, with all that’s happening? I’m worried about you.”

“And we’re worried about you, too, Emmett,” Bella said. “Your marriage just ended, quite publicly.”

“I’m okay. As much as I can be,” he shrugged. “I think I knew it was coming, but it doesn’t make it hurt any less. You know? We’re not talking about me right now. We’re talking about you guys. Are you okay? Do you need me kick some ass?”

“Whose ass are you going to kick? James?” Bella deadpanned. “The FBI can’t find him. How can you find him, Emmett McCarty Swan? Did you implant a tracking device into that asshole?”

“Nia?” Emmett smirked. “She is making herself scarce. That girl is terrified of you, Isabelly. You must have laid into her. What did she say to piss you off so royally?”

“I did not,” Bella argued, making a face. I snickered, which earned me a smack. “Okay, I did, but what she said was so inappropriate. I know that what she said was supposed to be funny, but with what just recently happened, it was …” Her face was flushed and her hands were in tiny fists. My girl was so stubborn and held a grudge like no other. It would be a long time before she forgave Nia, but her indiscretion would never be forgotten. “Just give me time and I may be able to look past what she did.”

“And this situation with James?” Emmett asked, his eyes soft. “You know that all of us would do anything to insure your safety, Bella.” He blinked over to me, giving me a loving smile. “You, too, Eddie.”

xx LMDC xx

Our performance at the Grand Ole Opry was smaller, more intimate than our other concerts. It was because the venue itself was smaller than the other locations we’d performed. However, it was exactly what the doctor ordered. The crowds were welcoming and enthusiastic. Bella felt more at ease in front of that audience, acting more like herself. When we were done, we packed our belongings and got on a private jet, flying to Chicago Executive Airport. Emmett decided to go to Forks, spending time with Charlie. Jasper and Nia flew back to Los Angeles, Kellan in tow so he could spend time with Alice.

We arrived at the brownstone around three in the morning. Senior was waiting for us at the airport. He looked exhausted, but thrilled to see us. He hugged Bella tightly before passing her to Kathryn, who was also waiting for us. Kathryn loved up on my wife and my father helped me with the luggage. “You guys look totally spent,” Senior said, balancing the bags. “And what the hell happened to your arm?”

“It’s a long story, Dad. Can I tell you tomorrow? When it’s not o’dark thirty?” I deadpanned. “We performed tonight and with all that’s happened, we just want to sleep in our own bed.”

“Do I need to be worried?” he asked, his brows furrowed.

“Yeah,” I muttered. “Come over tomorrow. I’ll call you, okay?”

“Okay,” he said, helping me load up the back of the SUV. He hugged me tightly before we clambered into the backseat. Ryan was in the driver’s seat. He drove us back to our brownstone. He was staying in the guest bedroom on the bottom floor. With all that had happened, we felt we needed extra protection. I wanted to have time alone with my wife, but Ryan, Kellan and Bella were adamant on having someone stay with us. Ryan did promise to stay inconspicuous and be mindful of our privacy, since we were home for our wedding anniversary.

Our six-year wedding anniversary.

Bella crashed and was snoring against me as we pulled up to the house. “I’ll take care of the bags, Edward,” Ryan said. “Unless, you need me to carry her upstairs?” He gestured to my braced arm.

“No, I’ve got her,” I said. He nodded and I easily maneuvered her into my arms, carrying her inside. She barely stirred as I laid her onto the bed. I tugged off her jeans, tucking her under the covers. I went downstairs, checking on Ryan and making sure he was okay with his room. He waved me off and told me to go to bed. I gave him an appreciative smile, darting upstairs and stripping down to my boxer briefs. I curled around my wife, holding her close. She sighed, snuggling against me and within moments, I was with her in dreamland.

We woke up in the early afternoon, to snarling stomachs and ringing phones. Bella answered the phone and I got up, padding down to the kitchen. I began making us breakfast. I heard Bella tiredly speak on the phone. She plopped down on the kitchen counter. “I’m glad that you’re with Dad, Emmett. You need to spend time with family,” she yawned. “How’s Sue? How’s everyone?” She blinked over to me, pleading with her eyes. “Coffee, Edward. I need caffeine. Sorry, Emmett. I’m still here. You woke us up with the phone call … I know it’s after one. We didn’t get to Chicago until three in the morning. You were smart in flying out today.”

I poured her coffee and she eagerly accepted it, sipping it and smiling thankfully. I turned back to the bacon that was on the griddle and removed it, placing it onto a paper towel. Bella finished her phone call, tossing it onto the counter. “I love my brother, but I could have used another two hours of sleep or more. That was the best sleep I’d had in what felt like forever.”

“We can go back to sleep, but after we eat. Your stomach sounds like a hungry grizzly bear,” I snickered. “Scrambled, or sunny side up?”

“Scrambled, with cheese,” she replied, hopping off the counter and swiping some cheese from the fridge. “Who filled this up?”

“Senior,” I answered. “He sent me a text while we were performing in Nashville.” I worked on making our breakfast, scrambling her eggs, adding cheese. She continued to sip her coffee, looking at her phone and checking email. “Anything good?”

“Kellan just sent a quick note that Alice will be joining us in Milwaukee,” Bella said. “Jasper and Nia arrived in Albany, spending time with her family. He said he’s going to talk to Nia’s dad and possibly ask to marry her.”

“That’s … wow,” I said, widening my eyes. “I never knew that he was considering proposing. I knew they were serious, but marriage.”

“You sound almost disappointed,” Bella said. “I’m still upset about what she said, but she deserves happiness. So does Jasper.”

“I’m not upset or disappointed. Not at all,” I answered, plating our breakfast. “I … I just … why didn’t he talk to me? He’s one of my best friends. I figured I’d know if he was considering proposing marriage to … to …”

“I get it,” Bella said, cupping my cheek. “I think that with all that happened, he probably didn’t feel like disturbing us. Drama has been surrounding us as of late.” She gave me a wry grin and I could tell how much it had been affected her. Her pale skin was almost translucent and despite all the sleep we’d gotten, she had dark circles under her eyes, which were tinged with fear and wariness. “What is it? Your brow is furrowed.”

“I’m worried about you, Bella,” I said. I traced underneath her eyes and she sighed, leaning against my hand. “I know you saw a doctor, but I think that perhaps we should get a second opinion. Maybe get a prescription, a different prescription, for anti-anxiety medications? One that won’t knock you out?”

“Maybe. Does Carlisle still have connections in Chicago?” Bella asked, tucking into her breakfast.

“I’ll call him, but after we get some more sleep. I’m fucking exhausted,” I laughed, practically shoving the eggs and bacon into my mouth. Bella giggled, pushing her nearly full plate toward me. I arched a brow. “Not hungry?”

“It smells delicious, but tastes weird,” she shrugged. “I’ll just have some fruit.” She swiped some yogurt and fresh berries. She whipped up a quick breakfast, nibbling on it as I finished her eggs. We worked together to do the dishes before walking back up to the master bedroom. Bella was snuggled in bed and asleep by the time I came out of the bathroom, answering the call of nature. It rose red flags that there was something more going on with my wife. Carlisle would be my first call after we woke up and showered, followed by Senior. He needed to be brought in the loop regarding James.

I didn’t fall back asleep. I just held Bella until she stirred on her own, a couple of hours later. “Watching me as I sleep? That’s just creepy, Cullen,” she said, opening her eyes and wrinkling her nose adorably.

“You’re gorgeous,” I said, kissing her forehead. “And I was only watching you for the last fifteen minutes or so, when you were getting restless.”

“I’m so far from gorgeous. I’m gross. I need to shower,” she said, sitting up and stretching her body. She bit her lip, looking at me coyly. “You want to join me?”

“Seeing my wife, naked and wet? Yes, and please,” I laughed, sweeping her off the bed and into the bathroom. My hand barked, but hearing her giggle and squeal was worth it. She was still adamant on checking every corner before removing her clothes. The house had been checked, but she was still wary of being photographed and for those photographs and our privacy being breached.

I didn’t blame her.

We showered and kissed each other. I wanted to make love to her, but she was still gun-shy. She apologized for getting me worked up, hard as a rock and shutting me down. Then, she started crying. That made me soft and I held her against my chest as she sobbed, apologizing, unnecessarily, really. We stayed in the shower until the water went cold. “Beautiful, let’s get you warmed up and dried off,” I said, turning off the faucet. Stiffly, she followed me and I wrapped her into a towel. I swiped some loose clothes, dressing her and tucking her into the bed. She still crying, her gaze unfocused and her expression was heart-breaking. “I love you, Bella. I’m sorry …”

“No, I’m sorry. I’m an awful wife,” she choked out.

I bit back a growl, kissing her forehead and putting on a pair of shorts. “I’m going to call Senior and Carlisle. I think you should, we should talk to someone. This is stressful to anyone, but coupled with our very public lives?”

“Okay,” she said, curling up into a tiny ball.

Damn it.

I kissed her forehead, ducking out of the bedroom. Dialing my adoptive father, I slipped into one of the guest bedrooms. “Edward! It’s been too long,” he sang. “How’s the tour?”

“To be honest? A fucking mess. It’s all a fucking mess, Dad. I need help. We need help,” I said, my voice cracking.

“Talk to me,” he said, his voice soft.

I told him about the pictures and about Bella’s fear and overwrought emotions. I explained how I had to leave and my anger, ending in my broken knuckle. All of this was weighing on us and we needed help. Bella, in particular, needed it the most.

“I have a friend who works out of the University of Chicago. She’s an internist. I want her to check Bella out physically,” Carlisle explained. “She’s probably suffering from exhaustion and it’s manifesting itself in these emotional outbursts. Her world, your world has been invaded and she feels out of control. After Bella’s checked out, my colleague, Dr. Gretl, can help you from there.”

“You think there’s more going on, don’t you?” I asked.

“The emotions? Her exhaustion? Is Bella still on birth control?” he asked. “Could she be pregnant?”

“We were talking about starting a family. She got her shot prior to our leaving for the tour, at the beginning of April, end of March,” I said. “We haven’t been intimate since Miami, at the beginning of August, for obvious reasons. She’s terrified of our private moments being broadcast to the world. Besides, she had a pregnancy test in Jacksonville. It was negative.”

“And you were in Jacksonville almost three weeks ago?” Carlisle pressed. “If my math is correct, Bella’s shot became ineffective on July 1st. She could be pregnant. I’m not saying it’s a possibility. Most women struggle getting pregnant after being on Depo, but Bella could be the exception to the rule. If she is pregnant, she’ll have to stop taking her anxiety medication and significantly reduce her stress level. It’s not good for the baby.”

“Do you really think?” I whispered, praying that something good has come from all this drama. “I could be a daddy?”

“I do, Edward, but have Dr. Gretl run her tests,” Carlisle chuckled. “I’m a retiring oncologist. I did my OB/GYN rotation many, many moons ago.” He sighed. “I’ll call her and give her your cell phone number. I trust her. She helped out a great deal when we got Alice. She’s a great doctor and she’ll treat you like family.”

“Thanks,” I said. “And don’t say anything to Mom. She’s already dealing with a lot with Alice and her relapse.”

“Noted,” Carlisle said. “Love you, Edward. Give my love to my daughter-in-law. She needs all of the strength and support she can get.”

I ended the call, dialing Senior. I told him the same thing as I told Carlisle and he was pissed, to say the least. He’d had an inkling that something big was going down when Nia called him about calling the tabloid rags. She hadn’t said much, but he’d gotten the gist of the drama. However, he was very worried about Bella. Even in the pre-dawn light, he could tell that this was causing a great deal of strain on her. I did tentatively plan dinner with Senior and Kathryn, for the final night we were in Chicago, before departing for Milwaukee. However, that was all up to Bella and how she felt.

Almost as soon as I hung up with my biological father, my cell phone rang and it was a local number. “Edward Cullen?” I said, wary of the person calling me.

“Edward? My name is Heidi Gretl and I used to work with your father. He said you needed a physician?” she said, her voice warm and kind.

“I don’t, but my wife does,” I said.

“I’m finishing up at the office and I could come to your home,” she said.

“A house call?”

“Carlisle said that discretion and privacy were incredibly important to you,” she said. “With your fame, I can understand why. I can vow to keep your medical records and the conversations with you and your wife private. I’ve got numerous patients who … value … their privacy.”

“You’re a concierge doctor,” I said, arching a brow.

“Essentially, yes,” she said. “I do have an office and I’m affiliated through University of Chicago, but most of my clients are private, wealthy and eccentric.” My phone beeped. “I sent over my credentials, along with my personal NDA, my promise to you to keep your secrets. Does seven sound good?”

“Of course. Thank you,” I said. “Is this a cell phone?” She replied affirmatively. “I’ll text you the address. I also have personal security here. He’ll let you in.”

“Understood,” she said, all business and hung up the phone.

I sent her the address and I went downstairs, telling Ryan about our incoming guest. He said he’d do a quick background check and if she came up clear, he’d let her in. I made us some light dinner, comfort food, of grilled cheese and tomato soup. I checked on Bella and she was a little better, still upset at herself, but I did the best I could to put her mind at ease. After we ate our dinner, I told her about Dr. Gretl. She was a little pissed that I’d told Dad about our problems, but when I pointed out her fears and emotional state, she backed down.

She needed help. We needed help. Our relationship, while strained at the moment, was solid. It was the stress of James and his gross invasion of our privacy that was wreaking havoc on our intimacy, physical and otherwise.

Shortly before seven, I heard Ryan downstairs and I knew that Dr. Gretl was here. “Are you ready, cantante?” I asked.

“Yeah. I’m sorry that I’m a mess,” she whispered.

“We’re both a mess,” I countered, helping her up and guiding her downstairs. Ryan was speaking with an older woman, with a sleek salt-and-pepper bob. She was immaculately dressed, with an air of authority, but a warmth surrounding her, putting us at ease. “Dr. Gretl?”

“Please, call me Heidi,” she said, holding out her hand. “Nice to meet you, Mr. Cullen.” We shook and she blinked to Bella. “Mrs. Cullen.”

“Edward and Bella, please,” Bella blushed. “Would you like something drink?”

“I’m fine,” she said. “Would you like to sit down while I take your history?” Bella nodded, leaning heavily against me. I led us to the family room. I got Bella some water and tea and a soda for myself. Heidi was everything that we needed to put our minds at ease. She spent an hour just talking to Bella before she began the medical examination, which happened in our bedroom. Shortly before nine, Heidi was done and settled my wife in our bed. She smiled at me, guiding me to the hallway. “Bella gave me permission to share my findings with you. I know that Carlisle said Bella may be pregnant. Well, I gave her a pregnancy test and it was negative, but it could be that the pregnancy is too early to register. I’m erring on the side of caution. She should not be taking the anxiety pills or any sort of anti-depressants. Not now. I know it seems counterintuitive, but with the inconclusive pregnancy test, I don’t want her to deal the issues of a baby with medical issues.”

“Do you think we could be pregnant?” I asked.

“I took some blood. That is a much more clear-cut indicator of pregnancy, as opposed to peeing on a stick,” Heidi said wryly. “She is physically and emotionally exhausted. My prescription is rest and relaxation, no stress. I think the best thing for her is to just spend this week in bed and binge-watching television, cuddled to your side. In regards to her fears about being watched, that will abate over time. She needs to feel safe before she can get over that paranoia. I’ve given her my phone number and she can call at any time. However, she feels like she’s let you down with her, and I quote, ‘teasing’ of you in the shower.”

“What? Never. I feel badly that she feels pressured. That was never my intention,” I said, tugging at my hair. “I miss my wife. I miss feeling her and prior to this invasion of privacy, we were quite, um, adventurous.”

“She told me,” Heidi snickered. “And she wants that, too. She misses feeling you, as well. But, that safety, feeling of comfort, needs to be return before you can go at it like horny rabbits.”

“How can I do that? How can I help her feel safe? I can’t make James go away. We have twenty-four-hour protection,” I said, frustrating lacing my tone.

“Love her,” Heidi said simply, cocking her head. I gave her a hard glare. “I know you love her, but show her love. Unconditional love and support. She’s almost there. Being here, she says she feels more at ease than she did on the road.” She gave me a soft smile. “You have my number, too. Both of you are my patients.” She patted my hand and began walking to the stairs. “Tell Carlisle hello and I’ll check in with you as soon as I get the blood test results. Call me if you need anything.”

“Thanks,” I said, nodding minutely. “I appreciate it all. Ryan will see you out.” We shook hands and Heidi met up with Ryan at the foot of the stairs. I heard them talking and the door closed. I turned on my heel, walking into the bedroom and found Bella curled up. She was holding the stuffed lion I’d purchased for her when we were in college. “Where did you find that?”

“After I changed back into my clothes, I found him on the floor in our closet. I wanted a snuggle buddy since you were kicked out of the bedroom,” she quipped, pushing her up glasses. “I liked Heidi. She reminds me of Michele, my therapist from Emerson.” She blushed, tucking the lion under her chin.

“Did you feel okay? Better?” I asked.

“She gave me some pamphlets and stress reducing techniques,” Bella said. “With the possibility of being pregnant, she doesn’t want me taking my meds for anxiety.”

“What do you think? I mean, about being pregnant? Possibly?” I whispered.

“I’m cautiously excited,” she answered. “But, the rapid test was negative. She said that the blood tests would probably be the same.” She blinked up, her eyes rimmed with tears. “I hope that I am pregnant. It would explain so much. These emotions … I mean, they’re kicking my ass.”

“You have every right to be emotional, cantante,” I said. “I get it and I’m trying my hardest to make sure that you don’t feel that way again. I swear it.” I crawled into bed, idly playing with one of her messy curls. “So, this entire time we’re here, I’m your slave.”

“Edward, stop,” she snorted. “I can get up and do shit.”

“You can, but you’re not. You spoiled me for my birthday. I’m spoiling you for our anniversary,” I said, moving her so she was in my arms. “Heidi said that her prescription was rest and relaxation for you.”

“That does sound pretty fucking perfect,” Bella said, leaning her head against my chest. She sighed, listening to my heartbeat. “I love you, Edward. I’m so sor …”

“Don’t even think of apologizing, Isabella Marie. Never,” I said, cupping her chin and forcing her eyes up to mine. “It’s not your fault. It’s not mine, either. Let’s just enjoy this quiet time and relax.”

xx LMDC xx

And for two days we relaxed, not leaving the bedroom except to get food. Bella slept most of the time, clearly exhausted from the whole ordeal leading up to our anniversary. The third day, Heidi called us and said that the blood test indicated that Bella wasn’t pregnant. She was probably dealing with her body producing its own hormones and that was why she was so emotional. Bella was not happy about the news, but took it stride. She said that it was not an ideal time to get pregnant with the tour still going on. However, her eyes shone with sadness. I wanted to make that sadness go away.

When we went to bed that night, we were curled around each other and as close as we’d been in weeks. In fact, in the middle of the night, I woke up to Bella’s soft lips traveling down my bare torso and her hands gliding along the waistband of my boxer briefs. “Bella,” I choked out. “What are you doing?”

“I miss you,” she said, her voice husky and filled with need. “I miss us.” I opened my eyes, seeing Bella naked and pressed to my side. Her legs were tangled with mine and I could feel her heat against my thigh. “Let me make you feel good.”

“I’m supposed to be spoiling you, cantante,” I said, cupping her face and kissing her deeply and tasting her sweet mouth. She moaned, her fingers tangling into my hair. I rolled us and hovered over her. “I’m going to spoil you, baby. With orgasms. Earth-shattering, mind-numbing, toe-curling orgasms.” I kissed her lips, sliding my tongue into her mouth. She moaned, hooking her legs around my waist. However, I didn’t stay up by her mouth for long. It had been too long since I’d tasted her, feasted on her pussy. I slithered down her body, wrapping my lips around her pierced nipple.

“Oh, fuck,” she gasped, her body bucking when I flicked her tit with my tongue. Her hands were buried in my hair, tugging on the strands and pushing me further down her body. “Lick me. Taste me. Edward, please!”

There’s my raunchy girl.

“Where?” I asked, teasing her with my fingers. “Where do you want my tongue, baby?”

“Fuck me with your tongue,” she growled, her eyes flashing. “Taste my pussy and how wet I am. For. You.”

“Oh, yeah,” I growled, kissing her deep and hard on her mouth before pushing myself between her thighs. Her pussy was bare, leaking and swollen for me. Licking my lips, I bent my head down and inhaled deeply. Her arousal hit me like a ton of bricks, making my cock swell within the confines of my boxers. Worry about that later. Focus on tongue fucking your wife. I ran my tongue along her slit, growling like an animal at the sweetness of her essence. She shuddered, her hands tugging on my hair as she came apart from one swipe of my tongue. However, one taste was definitely not enough.

I needed this as much as she did. So, I kept swirling my tongue over her clit, inside her and teasing her ass. Bella whimpered, bucking almost uncontrollably as I devoured her. It was the most amazing, beautiful and erotic thing I’d seen in almost a month. Watching, feeling and experiencing my wife becoming completely unraveled was so sexy. Tasting her release as she coated my tongue with her delectable essence was better than any of the finest desserts. She came twice more before I got my fill of her succulent pussy. “Edward,” she panted, looking down at me. Her eyes were rheumy and her face was flushed. “As fucking amazing as that was, I want to feel you. Inside.”

“Your wish is my command, baby,” I said. She pushed my boxer briefs over my hips and she tugged on my neck, crashing me against her body. She moaned when she tasted herself on my mouth and lips. I rocked against her, coating my cock in her wetness and teasing her entrance. She pleaded for me and I positioned the swollen head of my dick, easing into her tightness. “Oh, fuck me.”

“No, fuck me,” she whimpered.

“Bella, I want to worship you,” I said, staring into her unfocused eyes. “It’s what you deserve, my love. We’ve fucked a lot lately and now, it’s time for me to show you how much I love and adore you. You are my everything. I would move mountains for you, Bella. I’d do anything for you.”

“Edward,” she cried, tears leaking out of her eyes. I wiped them away and kissed her sweetly before I moved within her, allowing myself to enjoy making love to my wife. This is how it should always be. It wasn’t tawdry, dirty or ugly. It was beautiful and filled with respect, joy and most importantly, love. Lots and lots of love. “You … oh, God … feel so …”

“I know, cantante,” I whispered. “Just feel me. Feel us. This is us. This is our love.” She clawed at me and I kissed her again, sliding my tongue between her lips. Our bodies moved as one. It was lovemaking in its purest form. With a shudder, Bella came apart, again, in my arms. Her muscles clenched around my cock and she gasped, burying her teeth into the junction where my neck met my shoulder. The sting of her teeth made me explode within her, filling her with my release. I stayed inside her until I went soft, slipping out of her. We both whimpered and she kissed my chest, my neck, anywhere she could, tenderly and reverently. “Hi,” I said, brushing her curls away from her sweaty cheek. “You okay?”

“Mmmmhmm,” she said, smiling sweetly. “Better than okay. I really did miss us.”

“Me, too,” I whispered, kissing her tenderly before rolling off her and onto my side. I traced my fingers along her ribcage, gliding them along the ink that adorned her pale skin. “Being inside you … it truly was a magical experience.”

“Yeah,” she said, snuggling close to me and sighing contentedly. “I’m sorry about the sexbargo, but …”

“I get it, baby,” I said soothingly. “I was just as freaked out.”

“I wanted to be at home, in the dark,” she said and I could feel the heat of her cheeks. “If it was dark, not much would be seen.” I sighed, understanding her fears. It would take for us to feel like normal. What we did, was incredibly tame compared to what we’ve done in the past. However, just being able to make love to her meant more than words could be describe. “You must think I’m crazy,” she snorted humorlessly.

“No, Bella. I don’t. I get it,” I said, kissing her forehead. “I really do. You’re not the only one who was …” I trailed off. “I get it.” She nodded, moving closer to me and tightening her arms around my waist. “Now, let’s get some sleep and regain our strength for round two.”

We slept for a few hours and I woke up to Bella’s mouth on my cock. I came hard, blurting out expletives to the ceiling fan. Bella sat back on her haunches and she smirked confidently as she daintily wiped her mouth. I attacked her neck, kissing her hungrily and teased her until I was hard once again. When I was, I slid inside her. It was much more intense because I could look into her eyes and see her body. I could see myself dip inside her body and the wetness coating my cock. With a shared breath, shared body and one soul, we came together with whispered pleas of love and devotion.

It was exactly what the doctor ordered.

xx LMDC xx

“Thanks for going out with me, Dad,” I said to Senior. It was the day of our anniversary. Max was following us. I’d told Ryan that I needed to run a few errands and he didn’t want to leave Bella unattended. So, Max, who was already in Milwaukee drove down and was acting as our security detail. “With everything that’s been happening, I had forgotten to get Bella an anniversary present.”

“I did the last-minute anniversary shopping, too,” Senior chuckled, driving us to Jeweler’s Row. “But, why turquoise?”

“The sixth wedding anniversary presents are candy, iron and turquoise. I’m not about to get my wife a set of cast iron cookware or an obscene amount of candy. She’d kill me. Turquoise and amethyst are the alternative gemstone options. Bella’s favorite color is purple, but when I give her jewelry, especially purple jewelry, I want something more than amethyst. Turquoise is gorgeous and funky, just like Bella. So, I want turquoise,” I explained. “Here, Sal’s has my order.”

Senior parked the car on the street and we got out. I tugged on a hat, putting on a pair of sunglasses. I was well disguised. Striding into Sal’s jewelry store, I met with the older Italian man who barely came up to my shoulder. “Sal, thanks for bending over backwards for getting this for me. I suck as a husband.”

“Nonsense, Mr. Masen,” he laughed, shaking my hand. I’d used my birth name to keep the order and my presence in the city on the down-low. Everyone knew Edward Cullen, lead guitarist and singer for the band, Breaking Midnight. Edward Masen, Jr., the son of philanthropist and lawyer, Edward Masen, Sr., was far less recognizable. “I had these flown in from my brother, Vincent, all the way from Santa Fe. His turquoise jewelry is exquisite and I think you’ll be pleased. I ordered several different pieces and I’ll let you choose.” He led us to a back room and pulled out some chunky jewelry. “You said bold. This is as bold as Vincent makes.”

“You were right. It is exquisite,” I said, picking up the bracelet and smiling. “This is beyond anything that I had hoped for.”

“I’m glad you like it,” Sal beamed, clapping his hands. “So, the bracelet?”

“All of it,” I said. Sal’s eyes bugged out of his head almost comically. “My wife deserves all this exquisite jewelry.” I slapped down my black AMEX card, arching a brow. Sal smiled, swiping my card and handing me the credit slip. “Can you wrap this all up?”

“Of course,” he nodded. He picked up the jewelry, placing it into a sleek black box and into a matching, plain black bag. With a flourish, he added some black tissue paper and some silver ribbon. “If there’s anything else, Mr. Masen, please don’t hesitate to call.”

I smiled crookedly, shaking his hand and taking the bag. Dad and I left the shop. Max nodded from the black SUV across the street. I gave him a wave, sliding into the passenger seat of my Dad’s car. We drove to some fancy card shop and I picked out a one-of-a-kind anniversary card. Upon our return to the house, I saw that Ryan and Bella were gone. Max sauntered in behind me. “Where’s your boss?”

“He sent a text and said that Bella had a major case of cabin fever. They went out to get you your anniversary present,” Max explained. “I was supposed to tell you. I sent you a text, but you haven’t checked your phone.” I reached into my jeans, pulling out my cell phone. I saw Max’s text. I gave him a glower. “What?”

“Call me next time,” I sighed. “Now, since you’re here, make yourself useful. In the garage, there’s some twinkle lights. I want them to be put up in the backyard, on the pergola. It’s my anniversary and I want to make the day special.” Max grumbled, stomping out the back door. Max was a good guy, but did have a lazy streak. A few hours in the humid, Chicago summer weather, he’d get over it.

I made a phone call to Spiaggia, ordering mushroom ravioli, caprese and antipasto salad, and tiramisu, arranging for it to be delivered at six. Dad said he’d go to Binny’s to pick up some champagne and limoncello. I went upstairs, showering and taking time to shave my scruffy face. I dressed in a pair of black dress pants and a black button-down, splashing my face with some after shave. I heard the door open and Bella’s sweet voice float up the stairs. I slid on a pair of shoes, going down to the kitchen. She was wearing a summery dress, her hair curled into low ponytail. “Cantante,” I smiled. “How was your afternoon?”

“Good. I had to get you your anniversary present,” she said, gesturing to the bags on the counter. “It slipped my mind. I knew that we were off, but when I woke up this morning, after I’d gone down on you, I realized that we’re off for our anniversary.”

“We were on the same page, love,” I snickered, enfolding her into my arms. “And I think we were both preoccupied with other things.”

“I can see that you have something up your sleeve,” she giggled, pointing to Max working outside.

“I do,” I said. “Hmmmm, six years I said that to you, making you my wife. At almost this exact time, Mrs. Cullen.”

“You are such a romantic,” she whispered, her fingers gliding down my jaw. “And so fucking handsome. How did I get so lucky?”

“You had a pixie of a roommate, the warmest heart and the most gorgeous voice,” I whispered back, nuzzling her neck with my nose. “I love you, cantante. So much.”

“I adore you,” she sighed, her arms tightening around my neck. “I’m going to shower and change. It’s so humid today.”

“Chance of storms tonight,” I said, waggling my brows. “I want to make love to my wife, having her explode with the lightning.”

“Ooooh, yes,” Bella sang, her eyes darkening. “Lightning makes me look sexy.”

“You look sexy. Period,” I laughed. “You are, by far, the sexiest woman I’ve ever met and will always be sexy. And smart. And talented. And …”

“Okay, I get it. My head is going to grow too big with all of the compliments,” she said, dancing up the stairs. “Looking at your attire? Dressy?”

“Or nothing,” I called back.

“Nice try, Cullen,” she yelled, laughing.

My dad came by with the alcohol and he gave me a smirk. “Happy Anniversary, Edward. You’ve got a great wife.”

“Agreed,” I snickered. “Thanks for picking this up. Dinner on Sunday?”

“Probably not. I’m leaving for Albany early Monday morning. I’ve got a case,” he said. “It just fell into my lap, last minute.” I made a face. “I’m sorry, Edward. I’m taking some time off so I can come see you guys in Vegas. I’m bringing Kathryn with me.”

“You’re coming to Vegas?”  I asked.

“Yep. I haven’t seen you perform since that first college tour,” he said. “I want to see my son rock the house.” He held up his hand, sticking out his tongue and acting like Gene Simmons.

“Oh, Dad. No. Just no,” I laughed. “But, I’m pumped that you’re going to be at our Vegas show.”

“It’s long overdue,” he said, hugging me tightly. “Give my love to Bella. I’m off to dinner with Kathryn and then we’re going to the symphony.”

“Fancy schmancy,” I smirked. He rolled his eyes, leaving me and waving at the guys, who were finishing the lights in the backyard. I poked my head out and Ryan strode over to me. “Thanks for watching my wife today.”

“No problem. Though, Max said that you gave him shit today,” Ryan chuckled.

“Oh, no. He’s the one who gave me shit,” I sighed. “He forgot to pass along the message that you were out with Bella. He sent a text, not calling me. Then, he copped an attitude. That’s why he’s out here, setting up the lights.”

“This is not the first time that Max took the lazy way out. I’ll call up Greg to be one of your personal security. I’ll move Max to be on the outskirts. His laziness could have …” Ryan sighed, scrubbing his face. “I’m sorry.”

“Don’t apologize. It wasn’t that bad, but the attitude was not helpful. You think we want to have a freaking psycho sending us scary letters, invading our privacy and scaring the shit out of us? Fuck. No,” I spat. “Sorry. I don’t mean to snap at you. You’re one of the good guys.”

“Thank you, Edward. I’ll speak with Max and send him to Milwaukee. I’ll get Greg here by tomorrow,” Ryan said.

“Is that necessary? We’re leaving in two days,” I murmured.

“Better safe than sorry, Edward. I’m also going to inform Pandora of Max’s behavior. Twilight is paying a pretty penny for our services. You should not have to deal with an asshole when you’re dealing with a psycho asshole,” Ryan snorted. He slapped my shoulder, pulling out his cell phone. “Oh, I’ll make myself scarce tonight.”

“Are you sure?” I asked.

“I’m not going far. I’m using the room above the garage,” Ryan said. “Happy anniversary, Edward. We’ll talk tomorrow about the changes in security for the next leg of the tour. Things are going to be different.” He pressed a button on his phone, effectively ending our conversation. As Max plugged in the lights, he tugged on Max’s arm and dragged him out of the backyard.

I ducked back into the house as I heard the doorbell. I greeted the delivery guy from Spiaggia and tipped him handsomely for his services and his discretion. He left and I plated the meals onto our serving dishes. As I was putting the champagne into ice bucket, Bella walked down the stairs. She was wearing a gorgeous coral dress that made her look like a Greek goddess. She played that up with gladiator sandals and her hair in loose, sexy curls. “Wow,” I breathed. “You are … there are no words to describe how gorgeous you are.”

“Stop it,” she blushed. “I wanted to match you. You’re so handsome, looking all dark and mysterious with what you’re wearing.” She walked over to me and slid her arms around my waist. “You are the gorgeous one, Mr. Cullen.” I kissed her soft, pink lips. “Hmmm, another one.”

“Gladly, Mrs. Cullen,” I cooed. I brushed my lips against hers, smiling when I heard her sigh contentedly. “Love you.”

“Love you,” she replied, squeezing my ass. “What can I do?”

“Carry this outside,” I said, handing her the salad. She nodded and ducked out to the patio. I followed her with the antipasto, warm bread and champagne. I opened it, pouring it into the champagne flutes and we began our meal. We were relaxed and talked about our plans after the tour. We were looking forward to some down time and possibly starting a family. I also wanted to travel with my wife, without the stresses of a tour.

Someplace tropical. Secluded.

Clothing optional.

After dinner, Bella made coffee and I grabbed dessert from the fridge. I also picked up the bag from Sal’s that contained her present. I placed it on the back patio. Bella followed me, carrying a tray with the coffee and a bag hanging from her arm. “Great minds,” I snickered.

“Presents,” she retorted. “Gotta love presents.”

“I love giving you presents,” I said, pulling her into my lap after she put the tray down. I kissed her neck and she giggled. “I hope that you had a great anniversary.”

“I got the best thing ever. Spending time with you. I love our family. I like touring, but being with you is the most important thing to me,” she sighed, kissing my lips quickly. “And I love giving you presents.”  She put the silver bag onto my lap. “Happy anniversary, baby. Open it.”

I kissed her again, balancing her on my lap and tore into the bag. There was a card. I opened that first and I laughed, seeing Bella’s quirky, dirty sense of humor. “Really, Bella?”

“Tonight, handsome,” Bella blushed. “In more ways than two.”

“Sweet,” I sang.

“Come on, Edward. Open the present. Stop thinking of where you can stick your cock,” she giggled. “I’m a sure thing.” She poked the bag, arching a perfect brow. I pulled out three boxes from the bag and started with the smallest one. “Save that for last.”

“Oooookay,” I chuckled. I picked up the largest of the three boxes. I opened it, gasping at seeing what was inside the box. “Wow … this is gorgeous.”

“It’s a cast iron sculpture of a couple in love,” Bella said. “And seeing how we’re sitting in almost the exact position, it’s perfect for us.”

“I love it,” I breathed. “Which one next?” She pushed a smaller box. I opened that, seeing a photo. My brows shot to my hairline. “Golf clubs?”

“Charlie said it’s relaxing. And when you’ve gone, you’ve borrowed clubs. When we get done with the tour, these are going to be made just for you after some high-tech tests or some shit. I wanted to just get you the clubs, but Ryan said that getting you fitted appropriately would be the best,” Bella said. She took the smallest box, putting it into my hand. “Last one …”

I opened the box and barked out a laugh. “Is this for you?”

“Nope. All yours,” she giggled. “I’ve told you how much I love when you play with mine. I want to return the favor. This is your nipple ring.”

“A turquoise nipple ring,” I deadpanned.

“Yep,” she chirped. “Tomorrow morning, we’re going to our tattoo parlor to get this done, Edward. No backing out.”

“Yes, ma’am,” I chuckled, kissing her. “You know, you can’t play with the nipple ring while it heals.”

“Um, duh. Edward, I have one,” she snorted. “I had to keep your paws away from my tit while it got better. I know how much you love my boobs.”

“Noted,” I said, reaching behind me and handing her the bag with her turquoise jewelry. “We were on the same wavelength with our presents, too.”

“You got me a turquoise nipple ring?” she laughed.

“Turquoise, yes. Nipple ring? No,” I replied. “There’s no order, but … well, you’ll see.” She beamed, tearing into bag and cooed with each piece she took out. “Do you like it?”

“Absolutely exquisite,” she breathed, putting the bracelet on and waving her hand. “Edward, when did you get this?”

“Today,” I answered. “I spoke with Sal, my Chicago jeweler, and he got these from his brother in Santa Fe.”

“I’m wearing all this in Milwaukee,” she breathed. She kissed me, throwing her arms around my neck. As she did, the lights flickered and the rumble of thunder broke us apart.

“You know what would be better?” I asked, staring at her and tracing the necklace she’d put around her neck. “Making love to you, wearing nothing but this.”

“What are you waiting for, Mr. Cullen?” she purred, getting up from my lap and tugging on my hand.

“Nothing, Mrs. Cullen,” I said, scooping her up and into our bedroom. Placing her on the bed, I hovered over her. “Happy anniversary, my cantante. To many more years together.”

“Forever, Edward. I love you,” she breathed, tugging on neck and pulling me to her mouth. As we kissed, the windows lit up with lightning, the earth celebrating our love. It was going to be a great, hot, sexy night.

A/N: Happy anniversary to them! Lots happened. Some good. Some bad. What do you think about what Dr. Gretl said? Do you agree? About the pregnancy? We’ll see. Anyhow, pictures of the Grand Ole Opry and their presents are on my blog. You can find the link for that on my profile. I’m also on Facebook: Tufano79’s Twilight Fanfiction Appreciation. Twitter, too: tufano79.

Leave me some loving! ;-)