Saturday, August 11, 2012 | By: Drotuno

Coming Home Chapter 152 - Edward


Seattle... Monday, October 04, 2010 at 4:47 P.M.

"Babe, we should start getting ready," Bella called from the library's doorway. "Everyone wants to meet at the restaurant between six and six thirty for drinks first."

"Okay," I answered, tossing a broken down box onto the pile.

I'd been trying my damnedest to leave her alone. I knew she had papers to grade, a test to plan out for her return to work tomorrow, and she was sore, so I'd kept my touches to just a few tickles and stolen kisses. I'd rearranged the keepsakes in my mother's hope chest to accommodate a few more things, like a quilt and photo albums. I'd made use of the space that Bella had left me on the bookcases in the library and put away all my books. All that was left was just a couple of boxes.

"Wow, you've been busy," she chuckled, gazing around the room.

I ran a hand through my hair with a nod. "Well, I got to looking, and I think once all the boxes are gone and we move that sofa down just a little, we could fit my dad's desk in here." I gazed around the room, shrugging a shoulder. "Maybe move the piano over a few inches, too. I'll get the guys to help me move it this week."

Bella smiled and nodded. "Sounds great, Edward. So what's left?" she asked, pointing to the three unopened boxes against the wall.

"I think a few more books...and Tanya's box," I said, chuckling when my fierce girl's eyes narrowed. "I'm pretty sure it's not a severed head because it would've started to smell, but after that, I'm not sure..."

Bella laughed, a wicked gleam sparkling in her eyes. "You wanna?" she asked, snatching up the box and setting it on the piano bench.

We both stared at it silently for almost a full count to ten, which was funny all on its own.

"It's not ticking," she giggled, glancing up at me.

Pulling the blade from my pocket, I sliced the tape. Locking gazes with my girl, I said, "On three...ready?" I asked, and she nodded. "One...two..."

"Three," we said together, slowly peeking inside.

I snorted, rolling my eyes. It was inane things – movies, CDs, and a few pictures. "I'm rather disappointed it wasn't a severed head," I muttered, smiling when Bella laughed.

She gathered the movies and music out of the box and set them aside, only to pull out a red sweatshirt. "No, that wasn't a jab at all," she mused, turning it around to show the Harvard logo.

"Garbage," I grunted, rolling my eyes and pointing to the bag by the door.

"This is your writing," she said, holding up an envelope after she'd tossed the shirt into the overflowing garbage bag. She peeked inside, gasping, "Shut the fuck up!"

"Don't tell me...anthrax?" I asked with a dramatic gasp. "Don't breathe, sweet girl!"

"No, you ass," Bella chuckled, offering the letter, and I took it from her, my mouth falling open.

It was the last letter I'd sent Tanya, including the fifty-something pictures of my fellow soldiers' wives and girlfriends. Flipping through them, I snorted into a laugh.

"Well, she did take hers out," I said, tossing all of it back into the box. "Leave it. I'll finish tomorrow." I wrapped my arms around Bella, practically frog-marching her out of the room. "Shower time, my beautiful girl. I'm awfully dirty..."


"No way! Wicked Witch sent them back?" Rose gasped, and I couldn't help but laugh because my nickname for my ex was apparently used by all.

"I want my fifty bucks back," Emmett growled, smacking Jasper's arm with the back of his heavy hand. "I said she'd mail them."

"You said she'd burn them and then mail them. You still lost," Jasper countered, wearing a smug smile. "Deal with it."

Emmett pouted, but Alice changed the subject smoothly.

"So Edward, did you meet Miss Mary yet?" she asked, grinning when Bella giggled.

"First day," I laughed. "She's something else." I smirked, shaking my head. "First of all, she scared the shit out of me. Snuck up on my ass. I'm digging around in Bella's car for my duffel and laptop bag, only to come up out of the trunk and there's this tiny little thing standing there."

"She does walk softly," Bella mused, shrugging a shoulder.

"It's those slippers she wears," Rose snorted, shaking her head.

"Anyway, she knew who I was immediately...something about seeing endless pictures. She couldn't help but say how happy Bella was the last few months," I said, raising an eyebrow at my beautiful girl, who was trying to pull off an innocent expression, only failing miserably. "She introduced herself, asked about the war, and told me that her husband was in the military – WWII – but came home to go to law school."

"No shit?" Emmett asked, gesturing to our waitress for another round of drinks. "What branch?"

"Army Air Corp," I said with a nod of respect. "He survived Pearl Harbor only to ship out to England."

"Did she ask you about that tree in her front yard?" Bella asked, linking her fingers with mine. "I told her that we'd help her."

"She did. In fact, she has several trees that need trimming before the do we, sweet girl," I answered her.

"Don't sweat it, Sarge. When we come over to move that desk, we'll just attack both yards at the same time," Jasper suggested with a shrug.

I nodded, smiling a little as Bella's fingers tightened around mine. The girls merged into easy conversations about Charlie's upcoming wedding, which led to fishing, the shooting range, and travel plans. When school was the next topic, I smiled, pressing a kiss to Bella's temple, because since the moment I knew I was coming to Seattle – to her – this was exactly what I'd pictured. Plans, jobs, chores, and friends. It was something I thought I'd never have, and now I had it spades.

The waitress dropped off our drinks with a smile at our laughter-filled table, telling us she'd be back when our table was ready for dinner.

"A toast!" Emmett boomed. "To surviving the desert..."

"To new beginnings," Jasper added.

I raised my beer bottle, everyone meeting it in the middle of our table with their own. "To home, family...and love."

Bottles clinked as we all cried out, "Hear, hear!"



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