Accidentally in Love
Ch 31: Positivity
A/N: Thank you so much for reading and for taking this crazy ride with me. I haven’t been the best about replying to reviews recently, but I read and appreciate every one. Thank you for taking the time to leave me your words. Sorry for the delay on this update/epilogue, whatever the hell it’s turned out to be. RL was like a roller coaster the past few weeks. Plus, I’ve had a hard time even thinking about saying goodbye to these kids, which made this almost impossible to write. (I will admit to powering through the entire Cut & Run series during my procrastination/writer’s block and now I am in luuuuuvv with Ty and Zane. UNF)
Huge thanks to SydneyGen, Greenabsinthia, and Seastarr08 whose lives are just as crazy as mine, yet they find time to look over this stuff for me.
-x-o-x-Accidentally in Love-x-o-x-
December – 18 months After Bella/Edward’s Wedding
Garrett burst through the door to the doctor’s lounge as I blew on a spoonful of hot oatmeal.
In my early meetings about coming to Harborview with Dr. Snow, he’d asked me if I had any classmates I’d recommend for joining his team. I’d suggested Garrett in a heartbeat, and that was that. The group at Harborview was larger than our previous department at U-Dub Medical, but we managed to work the same shifts a couple of times a week, at least. A year and a half later, we were still the lowest on the totem pole, being given the worst shifts and the majority of holiday hours but we had a team of medical students at our disposal.
“There you are! I’ve been looking all over.” He flopped into a chair across from me and took a sip of my coffee. “The night shift still blows. I keep thinking I’ll get used to it, but nope, it doesn’t happen.”
I nodded and continued to eat my oatmeal, waiting for him to get to his point.
“Change of plans for New Year’s eve.”
We were both working on Christmas, doubles, but in return we were off New Year’s Eve and most of New Year’s day. We’d scored VIP tickets to the party at EMP through one of the doctors at the hospital and were planning on taking the girls out in style. I couldn’t imagine what he’d come up with to top that, or what I was going to tell Bella to do with the dress she’d already bought.
Taking a page out of my book, he ran his hand through his hair and sighed. “What are your thoughts on shotgun weddings?”
“I mainly try to avoid them,” I deadpanned, wondering where the hell he was going with his question; he and Angela were planning a wedding in July.
“That’s a good mantra.” He pursed his lips and looked thoughtful before continuing as I grabbed my mug back from him and took a drink of coffee. “But would you stand up for me, if I needed you to?”
I choked a little on the hot liquid. I had a feeling I knew the answer, but I still had to ask. “You’re getting married this summer, so why, pray tell, would that ever happen?”
“Cuz Ang’s daddy is really unhappy that our wedding date is a month after the baby is due.”
My stomach dropped, and I closed my eyes. “Shit.”
“Right? It’s not like I don’t love her, or that I don’t want to get married, but I didn’t really want her father holding a gun as he pronounced us man and wife.”
“Does he know?”
“Told him last night,” he sighed. “So we’re thinking a small thing, just our parents and you and Bella, then we can go out like we planned.”
“Okay, if that’s what you want.” I nodded, struggling to come up with the right words for him.
“I’m so mixed up, Ed. I feel like such an ass, like I’ve let down both Angela and her parents, but I’m so fuckin’ excited to start a family, too. I just don’t even know what to think.”
“I can’t even imagine, but you know I’ll be there for you. Anything you need. And Bella, we’ll help however we can.”
Angela and Bella were probably having a similar conversation, although knowing the two of them there had been a lot of sobbing and even more Ben and Jerry’s consumed over the course of their talk. Fuck. I was still trying at accept what he’d told me. Garrett and Ang were having a baby. Though I knew it was, it just didn’t seem possible. Bella and I were the first to get married, we should have been the first to get pregnant or the girls should have gotten pregnant at the same time, but—holy shit—it wasn’t supposed to happen like this.
I tried to calm my racing thoughts and focus on reality. “How’s Ang taking it?”
“Being pregnant or telling her dad?” Garrett laughed. What else could he do at that point?
“Surprisingly well. She’s always wanted to have a big family. We were just thinking we’d wait a year or so to get started. She was so strong last night when we talked to her parents. I was freaking out, and she just put it out there. ‘We’re pregnant and we’re in love. We’re moving up the wedding date and we still want you to marry us.’ I thought her dad was going to have a fucking heart attack. Both of her parents cried, man. It was rough, but Ang just kept her cool and held my hand.”
“What about your folks?”
Garrett came from a long line of artists and hippies. His mother was a painter. She dabbled in something Garrett called mixed media, but to me it just looked like she cut things out of magazines and glued them to frames along with whatever else she could find. His father was the black sheep. While he played bass in a local band in Tacoma, he was also one of the best neurosurgeons in the state. He probably wouldn’t be thrilled with Garrett’s news, but I had a feeling his mother would be ecstatic. Marriage didn’t mean a whole lot to her, but a baby would mean everything.
He snorted. “My mom is picking out names and dedicating her latest mural to her gene pool. Dad was a little pissed at my “lack of responsibility,” but then he said something about two pigs tangoing or being in a blanket. I’m pretty sure he was drunk. Some dude in mom’s little art enclave started making moonshine.”
“Your family is bizarre, dude.”
“Now you know why I appreciate yours.”
A resident poked his head into the door with a stack of charts in his arms. “Dr. Cullen? CT is ready for that guy who fell off the ladder. And the bloodwork is back for that guy who got attacked by the dog. His wife just got here, she’s really pregnant and freaking out. I wasn’t sure what you wanted me to take care of first.”
I enjoyed working in a teaching hospital, but sometimes I wondered if these new kids had any common sense at all. I looked across at Garrett, who was trying not to crack up, before sighing and turning back to my resident.
“I suggest you start with the freaking out woman.”
“Oh, yeah. Good plan.”
He darted out of the room, and I stood, pushing my chair back. “So, you’re going to be a father, and you’re getting married in two weeks?”
“That’s the new plan.”
“Alright then.” I chuckled and knocked my knuckles on the table before heading back to work. I paused at the door and grinned, looking over at my shoulder at him.
“Hey, Gare, congratulations. This is a good thing.”
He laughed and shook his head. “It is. Thanks, man.”
-x-o-x-Accidentally in Love-x-o-x-
Despite the fact it was six in the morning when I finally made it home after my shift, I went straight for the fridge and grabbed a beer. I cracked it open and took a long pull, still standing in the dark, quiet kitchen. After talking with Garrett in the lounge, I’d spent the remainder of my shift on my feet dealing with trauma patients. It had kept me occupied, mentally and physically, but it left me exhausted. I bent my neck to each side, stretching and yawning, before I made my way to flop down on the couch. No matter what I tried to think about, my mind continued to find its way back to Garrett and Angela’s news.
“Hey,” Bella’s scratchy morning voice surprised me. It was a Sunday, and she typically wouldn’t have been up until after eight, but she stood at the end of the hallway looking sleepy and adorable.
I reached a hand out for her. “Hi. Did I wake you? I’m sorry.”
She shook her head and shuffled towards me in her fluffy slippers. She crawled into my lap and wrapped her arms around my neck before she snuggled in. I rubbed her back and took a few deep breaths, letting her scent and warmth soothe me.
After a few minutes, she cleared her throat and spoke, “Did you talk to Garrett?”
“Yeah.” I brought my hand up and combed through her hair. “Did you know or did Ang tell you last night?”
She sighed against my neck. “I told her to buy a test last week because she was so damn moody, but I didn’t know for sure until she came over for dinner.”
“What do you think? I’m still kind of blown away.”
“That’s a good way to describe it. I joked with her about it, but I can’t believe she’s actually pregnant.”
“I know what you mean.”
We were both quiet, and I reached over to the side table for my beer. I took a drink but didn’t set the bottle back down, running my thumb over the label.
“What are you thinking?” she whispered.
I took a deep breath, exhaling with a huff. “I wish it was us, thank God it’s not, and maybe we should start trying. None of which make a lot of sense.”
She chuckled and turned her head, nuzzling her nose against my shoulder. “God, we’re a pair. I felt like my heart was going to pound out of my chest when she told me, but it was mostly because I was thinking, ‘Holy shit, it could be us.’ I mean, we’ve been married a year and a half. We said we’d take some time for us, and it’s been amazing, but every time your mother calls I know she’s secretly hoping I’ll tell her I’m pregnant.”
“Shit.” I scrubbed my hand over my face. “My mother is the root of all evil.”
Bella laughed out loud, covering her mouth with her hand as she tried to stifle it. She shook her head and smiled. “So dramatic this morning, doc.”
“Sorry, it’s just, can we do this on our timeline, not hers?”
“I think that’s just it, babe. I’m on the same timeline.”
I put my beer down and sat up straighter, running a hand down her hair, over her shoulder. “What are you saying?”
She hesitated, biting her lip, and I tightened my fingers on her shoulder in encouragement. Her eyes closed for a second before reopening and meeting mine.
“I’m ready. I want to start trying, or at least quit trying not to get pregnant.”
I could hardly believe my ears. It shouldn’t be so crazy, she and I were so in tune it was ridiculous, but I wanted so badly for it to be true.
“Do you mean it? Not just because of my over-involved family?”
“Edward,” she sighed, putting her hands on my cheeks and leaning her forehead against mine, “I want this. I’m ready. I can’t wait to have gorgeous copper-haired babies with you.”
“It probably won’t happen right away,” I said quietly, running my hands down her arms to slip around her waist. With my medical background, I knew better than to assume it would happen overnight. I didn’t want either of us to get ahead of ourselves.
“I know that, but it’ll never happen if I stay on the pill. What about you, are you ready?”
“Yes, absolutely. Are we fully ready? Probably not, no one ever is. But do I want this with you? God, yes, and I hope they look like you, not me.”
Her thumbs caressed my cheeks as she smiled at me and her eyes filled with tears. I leaned in and kissed her, then she settled her head on my shoulder with a sigh. We stayed like that for a bit, pretzeled together and soaking each other in.
After a few minutes, she sat up and blinked a couple of times, running her hand over her face. “I know we haven’t talked about going back to New York in a while, but I need you to know I’m ready when you are. We can stay here for a while, have a baby and be our own little family. Or we can go back and be part of the larger Cullen tribe.”
“Bella-” She put her finger over my lips and silenced me.
“My home is with you, and it doesn’t matter to me where we live. The only thing I need is you.”
I swallowed hard and clutched her to me, hard. “I love you, so much. Here, New York, Jamaica, wherever. It doesn’t matter as long as we’re together.” We both chuckled at my reference to our honeymoon in Negril. “Let’s play it by ear, okay?”
I shifted off the couch, and we both stood. It was still early, and we could both do with some sleep.
Reaching for her hand, I started walking back towards the bedroom. “Come on, let me take you back to bed for a little while before you have to get up.”
-x-o-x-Accidentally in Love-x-o-x-
September – 2 Years, 3 Months After Bella/Edward’s wedding
“Dude, you might think you’re ready for it…” Garrett laughed, tipping back a beer. He shook his head and continued, “But then your wife is screaming about how everything is your fault, and you’re never fucking her again. Finally, when you think shit can’t get worse, a giant slimy head starts pushing out of her vagina like an alien… I swear to God I don’t know how I’m going to go down on her again without seeing that shit. It’s like burned on my retinas.”
“Jesus, stop already. It’s not like you hadn’t seen it before when we did a labor and delivery rotation.”
“Oh yeah?” He pointed his beer bottle at me and gave me a stern look. “We’ll have this conversation again when something the size of a watermelon rockets out of Bella’s hoo ha.”
I shook my head and tried not to laugh. He was such a drama queen. With all of the changes in our lives over the past couple of years, at least I could always count on that.
Garrett and Angela’s son Abe was three months old, and he and I were grabbing a drink after work while the girls went to the spa. Angela’s parents were down for the weekend, so Ang and Garrett were taking advantage of the reprieve from the demands of being new parents.
It was kind of funny. In med school, the responsible adult lives we were living had seemed unattainable, but the tables had certainly turned. I couldn’t imagine going back to the way we were, with nothing but studying, working and the vague possibility of a family to keep us going.
“Speaking of that shit, is my girl pregnant yet?”
I sipped my beer and watched the scores on the ESPN ticker. “My wife is in no way your girl.”
“Well, if you can’t do the job,” he trailed off, teasing as he scrolled through something on his phone.
“Fuck you. We’re working on it.” We had this conversation at least twice a week.
“Yeah? You need some pointers?”
I hadn’t truly understood when, shortly after our wedding, Bella started to complain that if one more person asked her when we were having a baby, she was going to go postal. But close to two years later? I was on board. No one had the right to ask about our sex life or fertility. My mother asked because she just didn’t care about shit like that, she wanted grand babies. Garrett just asked because he knew it pissed me off.
In truth, Bella and I had taken a casual approach to getting pregnant. We’d stopped using birth control and just made a basic effort to have sex more often. Which was sometimes hard to do thanks to my schedule at the hospital, but we made it work.
“Oh, for fuck’s sake.” I stood and put a twenty on the bar, sliding my empty beer on top of it. “You’re a pain in the ass.”
“See, that’s what I’m talking about. If you think this has anything to do with asses…”
I raised a hand in thanks to the bartender and turned for the door, flipping Garrett off over my shoulder. “Peace out, jackass.”
I had just reached the door when I heard him call out to me.
“Hey, wait. Edward, come back.”
I turned, raising an eyebrow, expecting him to yell something obnoxious over the late afternoon crowd in the bar.
“No, seriously. Come here.” He held his phone up and pointed at it. “I think this is for you.”
I still halfway expected it to be showing me a Wikipedia page that outlined the best sex positions for impregnating someone or something equally ridiculous, but as I got closer I saw the purple peace sign that had changed my life. Craigslist.
“What, you trolling the personal ads again?”
“Shut up. Sometimes Ang and I leave each other messages.”
I knew they did. It was kind of sweet. I’d thought about leaving Bella a message there as well, but I’d admitted to her early on in our relationship that the only thing I’d successfully found on the site was her. So she knew I would never find a message if she posted it there. It turned out though, that my girl was way smarter than I ever gave her credit for, because even though she knew I’d never think to look there, she knew it would find me anyway.
“I think this one is for you though. Check it.”
I grabbed his phone and read the ad on the screen.
If you’re reading this, your wingman has done his job.
Before I met you, I didn’t dream about fairy tales or happily ever after. But then I met you, and everything changed. Now that we’re together, I want it all. I’ve taken your name, and we’ve made your home ours.
Our forever is on the horizon, there’s only one thing missing… Someday soon I hope we’ll stand near the ocean and watch copper haired babies playing the sand.
I don’t want us to get ahead of ourselves, but I’m late. I haven’t taken a test. I thought I’d wait for you. Meet me at home, and we’ll find out together.
I love you,
I read it again, my heart pounding. I was beyond excited, but terrified the ad was meant for someone else. My eyes darted from the screen to Garrett’s face and back again, unsure what to think or where to look.
“You okay?” He grabbed my arm and guided me towards a barstool.
“I just…How did you find this?”
He chuckled and grabbed his phone from me, tapping the screen before holding it out again. “Ang likes to leave me messages here in the missed connections section since we are on such different schedules.”
I read the subject line and threw my head back laughing.
Looking for: Transplanted New Yorker with Superhero Mother
It was certainly for me. I loved how close Bella had grown to my mother, even if she thought Esme was a vodka fueled Wonder Woman.
“I’ve got to go, Gare.” I stood again, feeling panicked, as if Bella might not wait for me to take the test.
“For sure!” He laughed. “Go! And keep me posted.”
“Yeah!” I called, already making my way to the door. “I’ll call you.”
I thought I heard him yell ‘congrats’ as I went into the parking lot, but I didn’t want to think about it, afraid to jinx anything. I knew well enough that even if the test was positive, there were a million things that could go wrong.
I climbed into my car and texted Bella that I was on my way. I fastened my seatbelt and closed my eyes for a second, taking a deep breath to clear my head. I exhaled and started the car, heading for home, forcing myself to obey the speed limit and not rush to Bella’s side.
My fingers shook as I tried to get my key in the lock on our front door. When I finally made it inside, I found Bella in the living room, sipping a bottle of Gatorade—lemon-lime, the only kind she liked.
“You found my message!”
“Well, Garrett did,” I laughed, dropping my keys in the bowl by the door, “but I think that’s how you planned it.”
She nodded, biting her lip and fidgeting with the bottle in her hands.
I sat down next to her and leaned over to give her a long, slow kiss. When we pulled apart, I grinned at her and raised an eyebrow. “So, you’re late?”
“Over a week.” Her breath came out in a rush as she nodded again.
How the hell had I missed that? Her cycle was usually very regular, like clockwork.
She twisted around, reaching over the arm of the couch to put her drink on the side table. When she turned back to face me, her fingers went to the front of my shirt, gently touching the buttons and straightening the placket.
I slid my hands down her arms until both of her hands were in mine, our fingers tangled together. “Did you get a test?”
“Yeah. I bought a couple.”
I couldn’t blame her. I’d been tempted to stop and buy one myself in case we felt the need for her to take more than one, but I’d resisted.
“Are you ready, or do you need more to drink?” I angled my head at her Gatorade, smiling at the idea that she’d been hanging out, waiting for me and preparing to take a pregnancy test.
She licked her lips and smiled hesitantly. “I think I’m ready. I mean, I don’t think I’ll ever actually be ready, but, you know.”
She shrugged and stood up, keeping hold of my hand.
I let her pull me down the hall to the master suite but hesitated when we got into the bedroom, unsure if I should follow her into the bathroom. We were pretty open about using the toilet in front of each other, but it seemed different. I wasn’t sure what the protocol was for peeing on a stick. I wondered if I’d totally fucked up by not asking her to come to the hospital for a blood test and by-passing all of this urinary nonsense.
“I’ll be right back. You’ll start timing the three minutes when I tell you to?”
My head snapped up at the sound of her voice, and I realized that she needed me in the present, not drifting off thinking about implantation and hCG levels.
“Yeah, of course.” I squeezed her hand in reassurance and watched her walk away, my heart twisting in my chest. What if we had gotten all worked up for nothing? How the hell did people do this month after month?
“Okay,” she called just before I heard the water running in the bathroom, and I quickly looked down at my watch to start timing the test. I looked up to see Bella in front of the sink, washing her hands. She smiled at me and giggled a little. “I pee’d all over my hand.”
“You didn’t use a cup?” I chuckled, moving across the room before leaning against the door frame to the bathroom. “You know, in case we need to do it again?”
“No, I did. But I still managed to get it all over myself. I don’t know. I’m not used to having to aim like you are.”
She moved closer and I wrapped my arms around her. We stood together for a few seconds, not talking until she let out a huff.
“This is taking forever.”
I laughed and rubbed her shoulders, keeping an eye on my watch.
“Thirty more seconds.”
Bella nodded against my chest, and I felt her fingers slipping out of my belt-loops.
“Hey.” Our time was up, but I felt like I had to say something before she checked the results. She stepped back, but I held onto her, lifting my hand to cup her cheek and bring her eyes up to mine. “Either way, I love you. If it’s…not…” I swallowed a lump in my throat and continued. “We’ll keep trying. Okay? No worries.”
Her eyes were wide and full of tears. I watched her lip tremble before she lifted her hands and wiped her face. She sighed and gave me a watery smile.
“Okay, I need to know.”
She turned and made her way to the sink, lifting the tester in a shaking hand. Her head was bent and her hair blanketed her face, hiding her reaction. Her breath hitched, and I had no idea what it meant. Was crying a good sign or a bad sign?
“Bella?” I felt almost desperate.
She looked up and met my eyes, nodding her head. That was all I needed.
I launched myself across the small space to pull her into my arms again, dropping to the floor in front of her. Everything I’d been holding back, putting aside in case it was a false alarm, went out the window. I didn’t even pretend not to cry.
She slid down so she sat in my lap and took my face in her hands. She smiled at me, but her face was wet and blotchy from crying. “These are good tears, right?”
“Oh Jesus, Bella, yes.” I reached up and covered her hands with mine. “The happiest. Don’t ever doubt that.”
“Okay, cuz you freaked me out with the whole ‘it’s okay if we’re not’ bit.”
“No.” I shook my head and posed kisses all over her face. Her eyes. Her cheeks. Her forehead, and finally, her lips. “That was just in case, you know? Your period can be late for a lot of reasons. I didn’t want you to be too disappointed if we weren’t.”
She smirked at me, the corner of her mouth lifting adorably. “But we are.”
My eyes slipped down to her belly, and I couldn’t look away. I slid my hand between us and rested my palm on her stomach. Bella reached forward and covered my hand with hers.
After a few seconds, she put her arms around my neck and held me tight before whispering, “We’re having a baby.” She bounced a little in my lap, giggling before her voice got louder. “We’re having a baby! We’re. Having. A. Baby!”
I couldn’t stop smiling and pulled her in for a kiss. I wouldn’t have thought that I could love her more, but I did. Knowing she was carrying my child…I couldn’t describe how it made me feel. And if just knowing she was pregnant made me feel so much, I couldn’t even imagine how I would feel when the baby arrived.
She threaded her fingers through my hair and moaned into my mouth. I wanted to lay her back and have my way with her, but I wasn’t going to take her on the bathroom floor. I lifted her off my lap and stood, reaching down to pull her up.
My phone started to ring as we made our way to the bedroom.
I groaned as LL Cool J sang ‘Mama said knock you out!’
Bella started to laugh, hard, like bent over with laughter as tears ran down her face.
“I’m not answering,” I huffed.
Bella continued to laugh. “Your mother is psychic!”
“My mother is psychotic,” I growled as the phone rang again from my pocket.
“You love her.”
Turning the ringer off, I pulled Bella close again with a sigh. “She’s my mother, of course I love her. I just don’t like her practically having her nose in your vagina.”
“Ew. Okay. I don’t like that either, but I love Esme. We don’t have to tell anyone now though, do we?”
I didn’t want to ruin our night with cautious doctor talk, but we’d be smart not to tell anyone until she got through the first trimester. More than that, I wanted to keep our news within our Seattle family. Clearly, Angela and Garrett would want to know what the test said, but I wanted to keep it at that. There would be plenty of time for everyone else to swoop in and hover over Bella or take over baby duty.
If you’d have asked me on that first night, when I’d decided to meet Bella, I would have never guessed how things would pan out—that I would fall head over heels in love with her and start a family. But I was. We were. All of that and more.
Looking back, I couldn’t say at what point in faking it I’d fallen in love with her. It was probably somewhere around the first time our hands touched or when she smiled at me when I approached the table. It didn’t matter. None of it did. I was head over heels for her, and I was so glad that no one had found out our secret, that we had such an important piece of our history that didn’t belong to anyone else.
Except Garrett and Angela. It was funny how things came full circle.
“No, baby. I think we should keep it to ourselves for a little bit.”
She giggled and reached up on her toes to give me a quick kiss. “Good. Let’s see how long that works with your family.”
“Right? One can only hope.” I hugged her tight and sighed. “I love you, Bella, so, so much.”
Bella stretched up and gave me a smacking kiss. “I love you too, doc.”
I laughed as I gave her a little squeeze and turned to kiss the side of her head. I was a lucky son of a bitch, that was for sure. Accidentally finding Bella had been like winning the lottery. Better. There was no where I would rather be, and no one I would rather share my future with.
-x-o-x-Accidentally in Love-x-o-x-
Don’t kill me – but you see what I mean? Chapter? Epilogue? I don’t know what to call that. LOL I feel like I need to give you a future take to answer a few more questions. So I will. I just know I can’t promise it will be up in 2 weeks, but it won’t be more than 3 or I’ll never do it. 🙂
Thanks again for reading! See you soon! (The line for Garrett forms behind SydneyGen and Greenabsinthia, they’re fighting over him!)
What I’ve been reading:
Dirty South Drug Wars by Hoodfabulous (wip 22 ch)
Summary: Bella and Edward meet at age twelve after the death of Bella’s father, a death blamed on the Cullen family. Their families are sworn enemies, fighting for territory over their rival drug trafficking businesses. Bella and Edward meet again at age eighteen and their attraction to one another is undeniable. Will their forbidden love destroy them both? A Dirty South Fanfic. AH/OOC
Terrior by thimbles (wip 10ch)
Summary: Isabella Swan uproots her life on a whim, moving halfway around the world in search of something more. Perhaps she will find what she’s looking for in the neatly laid rows of Cullen Family Wines’ Hunter Valley vineyard. Sometimes, it is the grafted vine that produces the more vigorous growth.