Song I listened to for this chapter: Old Dirt Hill (Bring That Beat Back) Dave Mathews Band
The next morning Peter wakes first and smiles to himself, feeling Bella still in his arms. He is always late to bed and is an early riser, but as he glances at the clock, he sees that he has slept in, well for him anyway. He lays there enjoying her in his arms and hopes in his heart that she wants this always. He can do this every morning and every night, easily and with pleasure. He holds her closer to him, closes his eyes while relaxing in the warm bed with his love in his arms and the cold outside. He feels, well… calm, serene almost.
Bella slowly wakes out of a sound sleep, feeling safe and loved. That is the only way she can describe how it feels waking up in Peter’s arms. And she really likes it. Bella has a flash of how nice it would be to wake up like this every morning.
Part of her is screaming it’s too soon for such thoughts. She shouldn’t be feeling this way yet, but the rest of her, her heart, brain and soul, they tell her this is what love is. Bella freezes and thinks her way carefully through that. Is she in love with Peter? That scared part of her heart that James had hurt the worse tells her no, she can’t be, he’ll hurt her, don’t trust him. But even as those thoughts skip across her mind, she realizes she does trust Peter and these feelings… She will see where they lead. But she knows she cares for Peter, trusts him with her most precious and unfortunately, most beat up item, her heart.
Bella opens her eyes, moves slightly and Peter murmurs sleepily, “Not yet luv, it’s way too comfortable in this bed with you. Methinks we got our first frost last night.” Then he kisses her by her ear.
Bella sighs and relaxes in the bed per his request. He is right about how nice and warm it is in the bed, and when she pokes her head out of the blankets a little more she feels how cold it is.
Peter smiles to himself feeling her stirring in his arms. He thinks about his pondering from earlier. He decides to again trust his instincts, thinking he can just ask her and see what happens. Peter asks softly, “Bella, how did you sleep?”
Bella snuggles back in his arms and replies, “Very good, you?”
Peter reminds himself to remain calm as she wiggles temptingly against him and answers her, “Mmm, best sleep I have had since I was a tot.” He kisses her again, but lower on her neck. ‘Not now Peter!’ He scolds himself, reigning himself in. He nuzzles her hair and comments casually, as if it wasn’t a huge deal for her to not only live in his house, but to be staying in his bed, in his room; “What are your feelings in doing this, sleeping here, all the time?”
Bella would have froze, but since this is what she was thinking earlier, she instead lightly says, “But what of your other dates and such that you want to bring back here? Won’t I cramp your style?”
Peter smiles and his heart rises as he comments back to her, “Well, since the only woman I want in my bed and on dates with me is the one I am currently sharing a bed with, I think I can deal with it.”
Bella turns in his arms, lying on her back to stare up at him as she asks softly, “Peter, we’re not moving too fast are we?”
Peter looks down at her, kisses her mouth softly and replies, “Since I plan for this to be the beginning of our lives together, it depends how fast you want to get to the rest of it. It doesn’t matter what others think, just what we think, since we are the ones who are living this life. I already told you I love you and I am in this completely. I am not going to change my mind, decide this is not love or not worth it and leave you. I look forward to each day with you and think how I love you being in my life and bring such joy and laughter to each day. I know there will be the bad to go with the good, but as long as you’re by my side, we can deal with it all. And it will be we, luv. I will wait for you, no matter what you say.” Peter looks into her eyes and waits for her to reply.
Bella’s heart melts at his reply. She stares at him, can see the complete sincerity in his eyes and realizes it is their lives. She completely trusts this man. He has stayed by her side during the withdrawal and that had been her near at her worst. He has seen some of the worst and instead of making himself scarce, he was there every minute he could be and encouraged her through it all. He stood up for her in the club, then he took care of her afterwards. Peter was there at the hospital the day after they met, just for her. He invited her not only into his home, but has told her he loves her and wants her there with him for the rest of their lives.
As she catalogs these things and other stuff he’s done for her, like picking her up and carrying her whenever he is worried about her or always brewing her soothing tea to calm her nerves. These little things, like making sure he wore a Jameset in case she got cold, always giving it to her without thinking at her first shiver. Bella realizes she is falling in love with him. There is no other answer to her questions than that.
Peter stares down at her and continues to wait for her to reply. His heart is beating fast, but nothing he told her is untrue. But he has learned that his Bella is a thinker and he needs to let her think and sort her feelings.
Bella finally snaps back and looks him in the eyes, wonder flowing through her as she realizes that yes, she is in love with Peter. Then she takes in the tension flowing through him and remembers he is still waiting on her answer. She reaches up and pulls him in for a kiss pouring her newly realized feelings into it.
Peter answers her in kind and meets her emotions with his own, his heart lifting in hope that this might mean… When they surface for air he searches her eyes for the confirmation.
Bella looks back at him and tells him, “Yes.”
Peter grins at her and she grins back.
Bella’s grin falters some and she tells him, “Peter… I really don’t know how to say this right. I really don’t have your gift for words. But,” Bella stops and stares at him, she wants him to know his feelings are returned, but she is nervous to put herself out there.
Peter watches her and tries to be patient.
Bella takes a deep breath and looking into his eyes, tells him, “I have said this to so few people in my life. And each time it has ended painfully for me. But I trust you and I know I am falling in love with you.” She wants to hide from him with those so-easily said, but so-powerful words now uttered between them.
Peter doesn’t think this morning could get any better and he whispers lowly to her, “Bella, you know I love you and you have made me so happy knowing that you feel the same. But as I told you, we will go as fast as you need us to go. You have control over this relationship and the speed we take things.”
Then Peter tells her, “With that said,” he rises above her, crashes his lips to hers, kissing her like the fate of the free world depended on it. She answers him back with just as much passion. He trails his hands down from her shoulders to her hips and feels where her night wear has slid up, giving him a little sliver of skin to explore. He caresses it as they kiss and he can feel her hands on his neck playing with his hair.
He moans at the feeling, coming up from the kiss. Peter looks down at her glazed eyes and bruised lips. She looks back at him and then smiles, bringing him down to her again for another kiss. Peter obliges her, his heart beating hard, he feels like he is on cloud nine. His love, loved him!
Bella loves this Peter, this passionate man who loves her. She loves all the incarnations of this man she knows and she further relaxes into this kiss. She especially loved when she made him moan. She smiles under their kiss; Peter leans away from the kiss and stares down at her smiling.
Peter knows they will have to get out of bed, because if this continued, he guaranteed they wouldn’t leave the bed for days. And he didn’t think Bella wanted to go that far with him yet. So he turns it playful and tells her, “Thank you, but now we need to be moving you in here in case I need the guest room for your harem, luv.”
Bella can’t help herself and laughs. Then, she looks up at him and says playfully, “If you keep that up, I definitely won’t need a harem to take care of my… needs.”
Peter moans feeling himself harden at her words. Resting his head on her forehead, he swears, “You be trying to kill me, Bella. That is what you be doing to me.”
Bella laughs at him, but then she looks in his face and sees the naked desire in his gaze. She looks at him puzzled and frankly shocked that he would want her that way.
Peter sees the look from her, then purposely grinds himself into her and kisses her hard. Then he moves his kisses to her ear and tells her, “You did this to me. Bella, you have me desiring you every second of the day. But as I promised, you control when and how.” He forces himself to stop, stares back at her and seeing her desire on her face, leans down and kisses her softly. He murmurs to her, “You control us, luv, completely. I will wait for you.” Peter makes to roll to the side, but Bella holds him still, staring at him.
Bella never knew she could have a man desire her for herself. She actually thinks of herself as undesirable and this is part of the reason she can’t understand why Peter wants her. But as he just proved, and is still proving, he wants her, not just her mind, her money, her soul and heart, but her body.
Bella looks at him and asks him wonderingly, “You really want me?”
Peter’s heart drops for his love as he tells her, “Always.” He wants to wring James’s head off his body for what he’s done to her.
Bella stares up at him and says, “No one ever wants me.”
Peter just stares down at her and then he tells her softly, “James was an idiot, luv. When we were in the restaurant last night, men wanted me to drop dead so they could have you. The same thing in the club; you are very desirable to men.”
Bella looks at him and says plainly and bluntly, wanting to be wrong, “But this is the first time you-”
Peter kisses her hard with a tinge of demand, then tells her, “Because for one thing, I wanted you here in bed with me every morning and didn’t think you would say yes to me horny self. And for another, I told you I wouldn’t pressure you. But I do want you, luv. I be raised a gentleman by me mum and she would box my ears if I didn’t treat you that way. I love you Bella. All of you.”
Bella stares at him and then smiles as she says to herself in amazement, “You, one of the most desirable men in at least two countries, want… me.”
Peter watches her face carefully and tells her softly “And only you, luv.” He kisses her, then he shifts to his side, gathers her in his arms, holding her tight as he repeats to her, “Only you.” They lie there together for awhile longer until Peter sighs.
“We still need to move you in here, luv. I am actually eager for you to be settled in my, no, our room.”
Bella laughs at him, “You really want that guest room clear?” as she feels him moving away from behind her.
Peter stops, leans down to her and says, “No, I want you in here before you come to your senses.” He pecks her on the cheek and then gets out of bed.
Bella laughs and then she stops, “Peter”
He walks over to her side of the bed, looks down at her smiling and says, “Yes, luv?”
Bella stares up at him and asks, “How bad is my place?” She sits up slowly, watching him.
Peter stops smiling, sits on the bed while gathering her back into his arms to support her as he tells her, “It’s quite bad from what I have been told.” He hesitates and to make sure she understands, he clarifies for her, “It needs to be gutted. But me asking you to stay here, I am asking you to do it on a permanent basis. I really do not want to wake without you in my arms. But I understand if you just want to stay here until we redo your place.”
A tear rolls out of her eye. That had been her mom’s place when she was Bella’s age. She’d moved out with Bella’s father when they married and then in the tradition of her new family, the Hamilton’s, kept it for her daughter. To have someone destroy her family home is extremely painful. She can’t help it and starts to cry in Peter’s arms.
Peter holds her closer, feeling her let some of her anguish go. He runs his hands through her hair trying to soothe her.
Bella can feel Peter comforting her and is comfortable enough with him to release her anguish. After awhile she calms down, feeling a little better for the release. Peter pulls back enough to wipe away her tears.
Bella looks up and tells him, “It was my mom’s before it was mine. The Hamilton’s always has a place for either the eldest female or male to have when they are ready to move out. It was a lot of her stuff there.”
Peter stares at her and he says softly, “I am sorry, Bella; we can go and see if there is anything salvageable.”
Bella looks up at him, thinking about it. She makes a decision and tells him, “That would be nice. And so that we can see how much work it will be to make it ready for someone else. Since I seem to have a place to live with a man that not only loves me, but I love also.”
Peter’s face tells her all she needs to know, that she’s made him happy and he’d been worried that she would want to go back. They both know this is a huge move for her and he is making sure she’s aware he understood this.
Peter hugs her closer to him and simply says, “Thank you. I will try my damnedest not to make you regret it.”
Bella pulls back and tells him, “I know you will. But you will need to remember that I do come with a lot of baggage, Peter. And as much as I wish otherwise, I have a feeling we both will need a lot of patience.”
Peter replies to her, “As long as you remember that ‘we’ and I remember it also, we will make it work.” He hugs her to him again.
Then to lighten the mood, he comments, “Well since you didn’t let me test the huginess of these yesterday, I can at least attest to them passing today.”
Bella can’t help herself and giggles.
Peter kisses her head and puts her back on the bed, smiling at her. “You can use the shower; I will get you some clothes so we can get moving.”
Bella then thinks of the guest shower and grabs him before he can leave.
Peter looks mildly concerned until she asks, “Is your shower as good as the guest room? Cause as much as I hate to admit it, the shower I took yesterday was heavenly and I won’t give that up.”
Peter laughs at her and says, “It’s better and bigger.” His eyes darken with desire and he leans down, kissing her passionately, before telling her, “Later, I will show you what all can be done in that shower with two people that would not be possible in the guest shower.” He then leaves the room with Bella staring after him.
Bella shakes herself and realizes living with Peter will be interesting. She thinks back to how this morning started and shakes her head. She woke up, never dreaming that by the time she got up and out of bed, she’d not only be waking in his bed while she stayed with him indefinitely, but instead be moving in with him, into this room and his bed. The biggest shock? Bella admitting her love to Peter and that he, of all people, finds her very desirable.
Bella smiles to herself musing on the changes she is making in her life and then when she reaches the master bathroom, she gasps, all thoughts scattering.
Peter must really like space. His room was huge. There’s a room for a closet even, but this… this is simply amazing. It has a huge bathtub for two built in the wall, above it lengthwise, a huge window through which she can see outside and see the trees growing right up to the window. On the wall closest to the bedroom, above the bathtub, a fireplace is placed invitingly and on the other holds a shelf unit with some bottles of liquids resting on them. Facing the bathtub with a lot of space is a large vanity with two sinks and a spot for a woman to get ready. Right now there is simply a plant arrangement there.
As she walks further into the room, she sees a room for the toilet and then on the other side is a sight that makes her stop in amazement. It’s a room done in the same warm cream marble as the rest of the bathroom, but has a glass front. And when she says room, it is really big enough for a regular walk in closet. And there’s shower heads everywhere. There are plants growing in the room, and a skylight shaped in a doughnut around the central shower head in the ceiling.
Bella just stares until she feels Peter’s arms wrap around her. “I didn’t hear the water running and saw the door open. I wanted to make sure you were okay.”
Bella turns around, sees him smirking at her and asks him, “Did you design all of this – this room, the house?”
Peter looks down and tells her, “Yes, I wanted a house that I could be comfortable in and wouldn’t settle for anything. This is my true home and no one but you has seen the rooms that mean the most to me. There are three rooms in this section of the upstairs. The other guest rooms are either downstairs or there are guest houses out on the grounds that I offer to the bands that come here for me to work with. But I am essentially a private person and someone who likes me comforts. So I designed and decorated to me taste.” He kisses her, ‘He just couldn’t ever get enough of her’ and tells her, “If there is anything you wish to change, luv, well you live here also now. And I want it to feel like it is yours, since in one way or another, it is.”
Bella just stares at him and then glances around the room. He wants to know if she wanted to change anything? “Peter, this is the biggest and most comfortable bathroom I have ever seen. I have no idea what I would even change in here or the rest of the house. It’s perfect.”
Peter sighs and looking down at her, he says, “It was nice before, a house that was comfortable, but with you here, it has become a home and now it’s perfect. But I know there will be things added and I can’t tell you how much I want that. I want you to be happy.”
Bella stands there in his arms. She is overwhelmed, but at the same time she understands the feeling. It is the same feeling that lets her sleep so well in his arms and what helped prompt her to agree to living with him so soon.
She can’t help herself and comments to him, “Well, at least I understand about the shower, and Peter, you could add a bed in there and still maneuver around easily. I don’t think there is much you wouldn’t be able to do in that room.”
Peter tightens his arms around her and tells her huskily, “Bella, you are really trying to kill me. I swear it!! Now I will be taking an ice cold shower with that thought in my head.”
Bella laughs, turns in his arms and looks at him. His eyes are dark with desire, but the kiss he gives is unbelievably gentle. He lets go of her, goes to a door she didn’t notice in her earlier inspection of the bathroom, pulls out a towel and indicates the robe he has brought in. Peter then walks to the fireplace and hits a button on it, lighting it. She can feel the warmth coming off of it, she’d not been thinking of how chilled she must be. He turns to her and says, “I didn’t see anything but the stuff I leave in the guest bathroom. Did you have anything you need?”
Bella shakes her head ‘no’ and tells him sheepishly, “I forgot to pick up stuff yesterday while we were out.”
Peter nods and he tells her, “We will get whatever you need, Bella.” And then he looks at her and tells her, “We will do this together, luv. If you want, I can get Rose, Alice and Emmett to be there also.”
Bella thinks and agrees. It will be hard and she will need her friends, plus she’s missed them. Then, she thinks of something. “Peter, what happens if James or that guy shows up or even worse, follows us back here?”
Peter reaches out to her, pulls her to him and reassures her, “No worries, luv, I will make sure there are plenty of people there. As for here, I don’t know if you noticed, but I have guards patrolling the area. It will be hard to get into here. Plus we can both defend ourselves, luv. You did send James packing yourself right?”
Bella relaxes and tells him, “I just don’t want to bring trouble here to you.”
Peter can’t help himself and laughs. “Bella, I brought trouble home when I followed me instincts and went to see more of you in me club. I don’t regret a single minute of it. It brought us here to where I am holding you in me arms, knowing you love me. Not only that but that you are moving in with me, not until we take care of this drug ring, but permanently. Knowing I will be waking up to you every morning.” He pulls back, stares at her and repeats for good measure, “Not one single quota of it do I regret. It is worth it all.”
Bella smiles at him and hugs him. Then, knowing they needed to get a move on if they wanted to get all this done, she tells him, “I think you have a cold shower to take and me a nice warm one to take.”
Peter groans, then grinning mischievously asks, “Are you sure I can’t join you, luv? It will be faster.”
Bella controls herself and asks him, “Do you really think it will be faster?”
Peter looks down at her shocked and breathes out, “Well, it may be, but it will reduce the wastage of water most definitely.”
Bella taps her finger against her lips in thought. “Hmmm.” Then, she sighs dramatically in regret. “No, I think I will need some private time to worship the shower gods and to give thanks to them for the room.”
Peter laughs and tells her, “Aces… Life is definitely going to be aces. Now I need to go duck my head in some ice water. I will be back to make sure the shower gods didn’t demand a sacrifice of you.” He kisses her and leaves the room to her chuckles. Life is most definitely aces.
Fairfarren ~ Wendy