"I will answer each and every question as best as I can," Bella says. I can feel her gaze on me and I'm still scared. Damn scared and dumb and suddenly mute again, just like the boy I was when she and I first met. As if I'd learned nothing in those last eight years...
I wasn't actually speech-impaired as a child; I was fully capable of using my lips and tongue and vocal chords to form words and sentences. But most of the time I just couldn't see the reason why I should make the effort. Why would it mean anything to anyone if I spoke? Likewise, the things people talked about hardly ever made sense to me. I understood perfectly what they were saying, it just had nothing to do with anything. Their lives and mine didn't synchronize. I wanted them to leave me alone.
Occasions when I had actually felt the need for some vocal utterance were few, and even then I remained silent. It wasn't that I had no words, rather that I had too many. My head was filled with thousands and thousands of words. Endless chains of words and meanings in quick succession. Important words, empty words, pretty words, useful words, wayward words, made-up words, words, words, words... maybe I would have spoken, if I'd only been able to pick the right ones out in time.
And right now I wish I could stop that whirlwind of questions in the back of my mind, so I could just pick one and ask it. But I'm not ten years old anymore; I've learned to speak and communicate and act normal, and usually I'm pretty good at that. I just need to focus harder...
I'm trying to picture a typewriter, one of those old curvy monsters of a typewriter you sometimes still see in black and white movies, and two hands typing all those questions with just their index fingers. Slowly. Awkwardly. It's a helpful image. However, when I try to read what those fingers are typing, the paper still just shoots out from beneath the platen at a crazy speed that doesn't match the typing at all, and everything gets blurry.
Maybe I'm just too tired. I've spoken a lot today, and the hurt is exhausting. The feeling of panic that rises in my chest when I try to look Bella in the eye is debilitating.
"Maybe we should get dressed before you start asking any questions?" Bella suggests. I can still feel her eyes on me... everywhere on me. I look down at myself. I don't want to put my clothes back on, but maybe my nakedness makes her uncomfortable? Because of what happened in the kitchen... maybe she is afraid I will lose control again? Not very likely...
"It is no imminent danger to you right now; don't worry," I assure her. My limp penis really doesn't look like anything to be afraid of. It looks small, actually. Women like big penises, right? Though Bella seemed to like mine when we were in her bedroom. She looked at me and touched me there. She even took me in her mouth - oh God...
"Do you prefer them big?" I blurt out.
"Penises... do you like big penises?"
She makes a weird noise, as if she is close to suffocating; it sounds alarming. I force myself to face her, ignoring the burning discomfort it causes, and what I see is nothing I would have expected, but it is wonderful. Bella is laughing. And crying? Her cheeks are glistening as if she'd just cried, but she's shaking with laughter now. Did I make her cry? I don't know... but I make her laugh now, and that's good. So good.
"Seriously, Edward? This is your first question?"
Seems I accidentally said something funny again, but I couldn't be happier about it. I grin at her and shrug my shoulders. "Uhm... I guess not?"
She is laughing even harder now, and I feel the hurt glide off of me like a heavy coat as I watch her. Suddenly I can hold her gaze easily again. It's like Bella has just come back from some place where I wasn't able to follow.
"It just crossed my mind," I try to explain, which she appears to find completely hysterical. She holds her belly and giggles like a little girl, and even emotionally spent as I am, it makes me laugh, too. It feels good, so good. She is amazing.
"I'm sorry," she wheezes, "but I really didn't expect that. Oh my God, you're so... so..."
She shakes her head and smiles at me so lovingly; it makes my heart beat faster. And then she's in my arms and her hands are stroking my cheeks, and she's back with me and I know this is all I want. Her warm body pressed against mine, skin to skin. She's back, and her hands tell me everything I need to know for now. Yes, they say, a thousand times yes. If she loves me the way I love her, or some other way, or no way at all - I don't care. Right now, this is all I want... all I need.
"Bella...," I breathe.
"You're just incredible, do you know that?" she whispers. "You're too good to be true, Little Green." She peppers my face with kisses and rubs her cheek against mine. "And your penis is king-size as far as I can judge. And yes, I like them big."
That's good, right?
One question down.
He didn't want to put his clothes back on. So we are still naked. We are lying in my bed, which is also still naked since I didn't bother to put a new sheet on it. He is looking at me again – I mean, really looking at me – and it's such a relief. We are both pretty groggy, so we just lie here, facing each other in silence. Edward is holding my hand, close to his mouth, alternately blowing heavy sighs or soft kisses on the back of my hand. I can see he is struggling.
"My thoughts are all over the place," I offer. "How about yours?"
He nods his head yes and sighs again; this time it sounds like a little moan.
"Too many questions, huh?" Nod.
"You don't know where to begin?" Another nod.
"I'm still amazed that you're talking at all... to hear your voice. It's awesome." And again with the nod.
"Edward, you already messed up with your first question anyway – no need to start being picky now."
I am delighted to see a little smirk pull at the corners of his mouth.
"It made you laugh," he says. "I liked that."
"Yeah, me too. Listen, I have an idea. Do you remember when you were little and how you sometimes got stuck when you had to make a choice? Like that day when I wanted to make you a sandwich, and because I didn't know what kind of sandwich you liked and because Esme just made the very same thing for you every day and never gave you any choice, you had trouble choosing. Hells, I didn't know you hated choices, and I offered you cheese and ham and tuna, and oh my God, you went almost catatonic! Do you remember that day?"
He smiles and swallows. "I remember."
"You probably would have starved if I had waited for you to pick a filling. Do you remember what I said to you?"
"Every word," he says. "You told me to stop trying, and then you said, 'I will count to three now, and on three..."
I finish the sentence in unison with him, "...you will just point your finger at one of these things without thinking."
"Ate my first tuna sandwich," Edward mumbles. "Delicious."
I look into his green eyes, wondering what else he does remember with such precision. He even recalls my exact words. That old memory just came back to me out of nowhere, but if I search my mind for more, all I can find are blurry fragments. Anyway, this special one comes in handy.
"Maybe it still works. Let me count to three, and then you just spill the next best thing that's on your mind, ok?"
It's what you're doing anyway all the time, Litte Green, so don't be shy now!
He closes his eyes and squeezes my hand. That's a yes.
"Why husband did you sent him where?" Edward gasps out.
I gape at him. He moans, "Fuck... I mean..."
We both burst into laughter, and the mattress is shaking underneath us as we hold on to each other.
"That sucked," he snorts.
"No, no," I manage between giggles, "that was a really good question. Four questions in one, actually."
"Yeah, I'm that eloquent," he says, pulling me closer. Our foreheads bump together and after a few more gasps our laughter dies down. We stay like that for several endless seconds, waiting for our breathing to even out which just doesn't happen. His mouth brushes against mine ever so slightly, like the wing of a butterfly, and then he just waits. He is keeping perfectly still, with his parted lips almost touching mine. His breath is ghosting over my face and he just waits for... what? My permission?
I gently press my mouth on his. I'd like to tell myself that it is just because I don't have the heart, after his breakdown in the bathroom, to deny him a simple, chaste kiss like this. But the tingling in my chest and stomach and further south is betraying me, and who am I kidding – I'm the one who shoves her tongue between his lips, eager to deepen the connection and oh God, it feels so good...
Edward kisses me back for all that he's worth, breathing heavily through his nose, and I can feel his cock harden and twitch against my naked belly. A muffled moan escapes him before he suddenly pulls back and whispers, "I'm sorry... kissing you is just... I can't help it. Just ignore it."
"Yes, please. It will go away, I promise. Can I kiss you again?"
"Will that help?"
I cock an eyebrow at him.
"No," he backpedals, "and yes. Maybe. I don't know. Please...?"
We kiss again, longer this time, more heated. It definitely doesn't help making the king-size 'it' go away, but to hell with it. I revel in the knowledge that a kiss, just a simple kiss from me can do this to him. Ok, it's not a very simple kiss any more, what with his hand stroking my backside and gliding down my thigh to the hollow of my knee, hitching my leg over his hips. The voice in my head telling me we shouldn't do this is reduced to a feeble murmuring, and I can hardly hear it any more over Edward's soft moans and the rushing of my own blood.
We are both panting when he stops and leans back to look at me, that special signature crease between his brows. His cheeks and part of his neck are a little flushed with excitement... it's endearing. I want to kiss those pink areas of skin, feel the heat radiating from them on my lips. But his eyes bore into mine, asking me to wait.
He blinks a few times and takes a deep breath. "So your husband... what went wrong? Why didn't he make love to you?"
Oh... ok. Questions. Answers. Talk. And yeah... telling him about my fucked-up marriage will be quite helpful to make his erection go away, I suppose. I prop myself up on my elbow and look down to where his hand is still stroking my thigh.
"I just wasn't what he needed," I answer.
"Was he mean to you?"
"No, not deliberately."
"But he hurt you." It doesn't sound like a question any more.
"It just hurt to know that I couldn't be what he needed. Ever. It hurt that he didn't want me. It was not his fault though. So we both decided to end this marriage; it just didn't work."
"If he didn't want you, why did he marry you in the first place?"
"We were friends before, and I guess he thought it would work out. We're still friends, I think. He is living with someone else now." I try to remember if Edward and Jacob ever met. "Maybe you remember him? Jacob Black?"
"No." His answer comes immediately; with his infallible memory, he doesn't even need to think about it. "So you sent Jacob away because he didn't want you?"
"No, like I said, we both agreed...," I falter, feeling angry all of a sudden. I realize I'm still trying to protect Jacob after all this time, still trying to fulfill the only purpose our marriage ever was to him.
We both agreed, my ass!
"Actually, he stayed with me for whatever reason until he found someone he truly wanted, and then he left me." That's more like it. It feels good to finally admit it to myself.
"So he is an asshole," Edward states, simple as that. I laugh out loud, but he doesn't join in. "Why are you still friends with him?"
Always straight to the point, right? "Well..." I'm at a loss for a moment.
"And we? Are we 'friends', too?" he asks, and his hand on my thigh stills. I don't get a chance to even think about an answer. "He didn't want you, but I do. And you are everything I need. Bella, you are the... the only..."
His brows knit together as he struggles for words, and I'm getting a little anxious about the direction our conversation is taking once more. I don't want to hurt him again; I don't want to see him like that again. Ever. But I won't lie to him either. I just need to be more careful this time.
And as I'm inwardly preparing for another L-word discussion, being oh so reasonable and sensitive at wording my arguments in advance, Little Green finally finds what he's been looking for. He finds it and says it... and totally steals my thunder. Because there is a truth in his words, so simple and pristine, the air between us seems to vibrate with it. It is a truth that defies explanation and eludes doubt altogether...
"Of all the people in this world, you are my person!"