After toasting the wonderful news, Angela came in, and announced that dinner was served. During dinner, everyone was so excited about the baby.
“I hope you are going to follow tradition and name the baby after his grandfather.” Edward Sr. announced.
“We haven’t discussed that yet.” Edward answered.
Bella grasped Edward’s hand, and gave it a squeeze. “We would never break tradition. Family means too much to us for us not to continue on with such a wonderful tradition.”
“That is great, Carlisle Masen Cullen, III.”
“But what if it is a girl?” Bella asked.
They looked at each other with a curious expression on their faces. It had been several generations of just male offspring on both sides of the family, other than Bella, and it was an only blessing that Renee had named her after Aro’s grandmother.
“Bella, you were named after your great-grandmother, Isabella Volturi.” Michael explained.
“I had forgotten that.” Bella replied, and then looked at Edward. “We could use my grandmother’s first name, and, possibly, Esme’s mother’s name for the middle name.”
“That sounds wonderful my love. Claudia Elizabeth Volturi Cullen.”
“Elizabeth?” Bella giggled. “Sean and Elizabeth are going to get a kick out of that one.”
“How the fuck is Sean?” Edward Sr. asked.
“Doing fucking great, now that he has his Elizabeth back.” Edward exclaimed.
“Elizabeth who?” Edward Sr. asked.
“Oh, dear, don’t you listen to a thing I say. Sean O’Leary has fallen for our Elizabeth Santos.” Clara explained.
“Well, doesn’t he have to marry an Irish lass?”
“Dad, have you forgotten everything. Elizabeth was married to Antonio Santos before his premature death. His parents took her in because her father disowned her when she married Antonio.” Carlisle explained.
“Well, fuck, we are losing a good member of the family.” Edward Sr grumbled.
“Grandfather, we don’t see at losing a member, but gaining another connection with the Irish family on the East Coast.” Edward inserted.
“Ed, she is happy and very much in love with Sean.” Clara said.
“It even gets better; they are also expecting.” Esme gushed. “They are getting married on the first of December, and I was honored to be asked to help with the event.”
“Have we started taking bets on which child says fuck first?” Edward Sr. asked. “Because I want in on that action.”
Everyone at the table laughed, but, in the back of everyone’s mind, they, too, wondered which one would. After a delicious dinner, and lots of laughter, the grandparents gave them hugs and more well wishes before leaving. Carlisle and Michael told them that they were taking care of everything, and not to worry. They were to take as much time as they needed to heal.
Edward and Bella walked back upstairs, removed their clothes, and got into bed, both exhausted from the dinner. But, unlike the previous night, Bella slept soundly, wrapped closely to the man who would protect her and their unborn child with his life.
The next day, Dr. Mallos once again came over, and was excited to see the great progress that Edward was making. However, he also had the wonderful news that he had spoken to Meribeth at length, and she had decided to come on board as a gynecologist and obstetrician for the family. The family was so large, and had many women and wives as part of it that it made sense to have an OB/GYN on staff. Edward had given Dr. Mallos an amount that the family would be willing to pay Meribeth; she was excited about it. The family would also be paying for all malpractice insurance, and would have her office set up. The plan was to have an office set up in Cullen Towers, which would house both Dr. Mallos and, now, Dr. Meribeth Muir. It would be state of the art with everything they would need to treat the family, even a surgery suite. Dr. Mallos had names of the nurses that he wanted to hire, as well as the receptionist staff, who would be two girls from those who had been part of the prostitution ring that Volturi family had run. He had spoken with Maria, who was excited to have this opportunity for “her” girls.
Meribeth would be coming over on Monday to check Bella over. She would also be bringing an ultrasound machine, so they would be able to see their little bundle of joy. Bella was going to talk with Elizabeth, and see if she would want to come over Monday to get checked out as well. Sean and Elizabeth were staying in Seattle until they got most of the wedding plans worked out, and then they would be going back to Boston.
The physical therapist came after Dr. Mallos’ visit. After an hour of therapy, Edward was exhausted and grumpy. He was upset because he didn’t have the strength in his arm that he once had before the shooting. The therapist explained that it would take some time to regain the movement and strength, but he felt Edward would make a full recovery. Edward demanded to know how long that would be, and, when the therapist couldn’t tell him an exact day, he began to yell and scream about what type of incompetent asshole Dr. Mallos had sent.
“Edward, darling.” Bella cooed. “Jonathan here is a top notch therapist, and he said that you would get back to normal. So calm down, and tell him you are sorry.”
Edward didn’t like it, but he knew she was right. “Fine. Sorry about that, Jonathan. I am just frustrated.”
“I understand, Mr. Cullen. It happens all the time.” Jonathan admitted.
“Please call me Edward, and I promise I will try not to be an asshole all the time.”
“Deal. I will see you tomorrow; do those exercises that I showed you.”
After Jonathan left, Edward and Bella lay down, and took a long nap. When they got up, it was about time for Sean and Elizabeth to come over and meet with Esme to start the wedding plans. Esme arrived with a large book filled with books for every stage of the wedding. By the time she left, the rehearsal dinner, wedding, and reception was well on its way to be planned.
“We need to discuss the dress.” Esme said. “Do you have any idea who you want to design it?”
“Actually, Sean’s cousin in Ireland is a wedding dress designer. She is coming over, and designing my dress.” Elizabeth beamed.
“Oh, dear, that is wonderful. Now, here is the book that you can take with you. I will start calling suppliers and caterers in Boston. Sean, have you called your Priest?” Esme asked.
“Yes; he is available, and so is the church.”
“That is good to hear. I need you both select your bridesmaids and groomsmen, and then make contact with them. I will be coming out to Boston the week of the wedding, and make sure everything is lined up.” Esme said. “I need to go home, and start making calls.”
Esme got up, and placed everything back in the box, other than the book she gave Elizabeth. She picked up the box, and turned to leave, but stopped mid-stride, and turned back around with a mischievous smile. “Oh, and I will be needing that credit card of yours, Mr. O’Leary. I hope it has no limit.”
Sean chuckled as he reached into his wallet, pulled out his black Amex card, and handed it to Esme. “Already paid the annual fee; it has no limit.”
Esme took the card, and slipped it into the pocket of her dress. “You might want to give them a warning, just to be sure, because this baby is going to get a workout.”
“Will do.” Sean laughed.
“Oh, Edward, Bella, are you feeling up to coming to church tomorrow?” Esme asked.
They hadn’t been to service in several weeks, due to the family being in Vegas, then the shooting and kidnapping. Father Ryan had called Carlisle when he heard about the shooting. He told him he would be keeping the family in his prayers. Bella’s kidnapping had not been known, and they wanted it to keep it that way. The plan was that Bella would have been in a car accident in Vegas, which would explain the bruising that was still evident on her face. “If Bella is feeling up to it, I would love to go. We do have a lot to be thankful for,” Edward explained. He might be a deadly motherfucker Don, but he knew that God had to be watching out for his family, and he needed to give thanks.
“I am sure I will be fine.” Bella answered. “I have a lot to be thankful for, too.”
“Wonderful, we will hopefully see you tomorrow.” Esme said, as she walked out the back to her golf cart to drive home.
Bella asked Elizabeth about coming over to get checked out by Meribeth on Monday, and she jumped at the chance to do so.
“Can I come?” Sean asked.
“Of course, I want you to experience every step of this glorious event with me.” Elizabeth said.
“My love, I will be here, wherever you need me.” Sean cooed.
**********************B & U************************************
The next morning, Edward woke to find Bella’s side of the bed empty. Rubbing his hand over the sheets, he found that it was cold, meaning she had been gone for a while. He got up slowly; his shoulder and side were stiff from lying still for so long. He began to swing the arm slowly in circles, like Jonathan had instructed him, and, as much as he hated to admit it, it helped him to loosen it up.
After he felt a little better, he went off to find his love. Walking toward the bathroom, he heard Bella gagging and moaning. Carefully opening the door, he found her sitting on the floor with her head hung over the toilet, throwing up. Rushing over, he picked up a washcloth, wet it with cold water, and brought it over. Gingerly getting down on his knees next to her, he pleaded.
“Baby, why didn’t you wake me?”
Bella finally stopped, and sat back. She had gotten up to go to the bathroom, and, as soon as her feet hit the floor, the nausea hit. Once she threw up, she thought it would be over, but she had been so wrong. Wave after wave came every time she tried to get up, so she decided to stay put until it was over. She was thankful that they had a mini fridge in the bathroom, where they kept bottles of water. Pulling down several fluffy towels, she made herself a little bed. She had fallen asleep, but, when she tried to roll over, the nausea hit again.
“I didn’t think I would be in here long, and I couldn’t move too much without it starting up again.” Bella said weakly.
“Oh, baby. Is there anything I can get you to help?” Edward asked; he was so worried about her.
“I don’t know.”
“Hold on, let me call Mom, and see if she knows anything.” Edward said, as he slowly got up, and made it back to the bedroom to get his phone. Finding his phone, he quickly found his mom’s cell number.
“Edward, what is wrong?” Esme asked groggily. She knew her son wouldn’t be calling at five thirty in the morning unless it was an emergency.
“Mom, Bella is throwing up.” He explained.
“Edward, that is going to happen.”
“No, Mom, she has been throwing up for hours. Is there anything I can give her to help her?”
“Oh my. Give me a few minutes, and I will come over with some tea and crackers.” Esme replied. She jumped out of bed, and turned on the lamp, causing Carlisle to wake up.
“What is wrong?”
“Bella is sick. I am going over to help.”
“Shit. Hold on, I will go with you. I am sure Edward is be fit to be tied.”
Carlisle and Esme quickly dressed, and collected the peppermint tea bags, the ginger snaps, and lemon drops. Like Esme, Carlisle had also purchased a golf cart to drive between the properties. Carlisle had a custom 1932 Ford California golf cart built. It was cherry red and hot as hell.
He helped Esme in the passenger seat and climbed into the driver’s seat and took off, impressed that he could go twenty-five miles per hour. They quickly arrived at the house, happy to see the guards were taking their responsibilities seriously. An elite set of guards had been selected from the family to perform protective detail on the Don and Donna of the family.
The guard recognized Carlisle immediately and allowed him to pass without delay. Carlisle disarmed the alarm and they went inside. Esme quickly went to the kitchen, turned on the stove, and started making the tea. After finishing, she placed it on a tray, along with ginger snaps, and lemon drops and they climbed the stairs to master suite. Before going in, Carlisle called out Edward’s name. He knew that, even though Edward was injured, he was always on alert, and wouldn’t think a second thought of shooting whoever came into their bedroom unannounced.
“Dad, we are in the bathroom.” Edward called out.
Carlisle and Esme walked into the bedroom, where Esme placed the tray on the bedside table. They then proceeded to the bathroom, where they found both Edward and Bella on the floor.
“Oh, my poor baby.” Esme exclaimed, rushing over to Bella. “You have been having a horrible time. I brought over some things to help. But, first, let’s get you back in bed.”
Bella raised her head slowly. “I don’t think I can walk.”
Edward went to pick her up, and Esme slapped his arm. “Have you lost your fucking mind? You cannot lift her with your arm. Carlisle will do it.”
“But, Mom, she is my wife.”
Carlisle laid his hand on his shoulder. “Son, we know that, but, right now, you need a little help.”
“Fine.” Edward grumbled. He slowly got up, and got out of the way so Carlisle could get Bella more easily.
Carlisle squatted down. “Hey there, little one. Let daddy take care of you.” He volunteered.
Bella lifted her head slowly. “I may throw up on you.”
“Oh, sweetheart, it’s nothing that I haven’t had happen to me before. Edward would always come into our bedroom at night when he was sick, wake us up, and say, “Daddy, I am going to throw up,” and then proceeded to do so.”
Carlisle slowly placed an arm under her legs, one around her body, and slowly pulled her close, and stood up. Bella laid her head on his shoulder, and he walked into the bedroom to find that Esme had prepared the bed for her. She had placed extra pillows for her to sit up, with and a waste basket beside the bed, just in case. The covers had been turned down, and were ready for Bella to be placed in them. He walked to her side of the bed, laid her down softly, and then placed a sweet kiss on her forehead.
Esme stepped in, and went to work. Tucking Bella into the blankets, and then picking up the teacup full of peppermint tea, she brought it up to her lips. “Take slow sips.” She implored.
Bella sipped on the perfectly warm tea, letting it slide down her throat, which was sore from throwing up so much. After several sips, Esme handed her a ginger snap cracker.
“Some would say to nibble on saltine crackers, but, when I was pregnant with Edward, my mother gave me ginger snaps, and I was able to keep them down much better.”
Bella took the ginger snap, and slowly bit off a piece, chewed it, and swallowed. She allowed for the tea and snaps to settle, and hoped it would do the trick.
Meanwhile, Carlisle walked back into the bathroom to find Edward sitting on the bench that was in the room with his head down with his hands in his hair.
“Edward, son, are you okay?”
Edward shook his head no. He was so upset with himself. He had promised Bella he would take care of her, and he couldn’t give carry her into the bedroom. What kind of husband was he?
Carlisle came over, and sat down beside Edward. “Son, I know you are having a hard time; hell, I was in your shoes once.” Carlisle explained.
Edward looked up, and wondered what his father was talking about; he didn’t remember his father ever being shot. “What do you mean?”
“It was right after you were born. The Russians were trying to take over our turf, so I had gone out to the docks to check on things. I was still headstrong, and thought I needed to be hands on all situations. Marcus was with me, and, as we went around a shipping container, ten Russian hitmen ambushed us. The firefight was furious, and we were able to kill all the motherfuckers, but not without taking some hits ourselves. I was hit in the shoulder, hell, much like where you were shot. Marcus was hit in the leg, but was able to hobble around on his good leg. He wrapped up my shoulder, and rushed me to the hospital. The doctors got me into surgery, and were able to stop the bleeding, and remove the bullet. After a few days in the hospital, I was finally able to go home. Your mother had not been able to spend a lot of time at the hospital, because you were only a few months old. When I got home, she was taking care of both you and me, but she overworked herself, and ended up sick. Edward, it was bad. Dr. Mallos told her she needed to stay in bed for a week; if she didn’t, he would be forced to admit her. So, here I was with a bummed up shoulder, an infant, and sick wife. She had to have help going to and from the bathroom, and I couldn’t help her. She had to call her mother to come over, and stay to help take care of you and her. I felt like I was letting her down, but now that I look back on it, there was nothing wrong with asking for help from family. Family helps family. So, get up, go in there, and give your support to your wife and allow your mother and me to pick up the rest.”
“Thanks, Dad. I am still learning from your wisdom.” Edward acknowledged.
They got up, went back in the bedroom, and were shocked by what they saw. Bella was sitting on the bed, drinking tea, munching on some type of cookie, and laughing at something the Esme had said. All the color had returned to her cheeks, and her eyes, which had been dulled, were sparkling brightly.
“Hey, sweetheart.” Bella chirped happily.
“Fuck, Mom, what did you feed her?” Edward questioned.
“Just something to make her little stomach happy.” Esme beamed.
“Thank you so much, Mom.” Bella said.
“You are very welcome, sweetie. Now, keep those lemon drops on you at all times.”
“I will.” Bella confirmed.
“When I get home, I will have a shipment of peppermint tea ordered and shipped immediately to you. This afternoon, after church, I will make a huge batch of ginger snaps.” Esme explained. “Carlisle, dear, we need to get home and get ready for church.”
“Yes, dear.” Carlisle answered, wrapping his arm around her waist.
“We will see you there.” Bella said.
“Bella, honey, I don’t think that is a good idea.” Edward urged.
“What do you mean? We said last night we were going.”
“But I don’t think you should go, since you are sick.”
Bella couldn’t believe what she was hearing. How dare he tell her that she was too sick to do something.
“Look here, Edward. I am not dying, I am just pregnant, so do not tell me that I am too sick. I am going to church, with or without you.” Bella growled.
“DON’T ‘SWEETIE’ ME!” Bella yelled. Turning back to Carlisle and Esme, she noticed that they were trying their best not to laugh. “I will see you at church.” Bella sweetly proclaimed.
“Okay, sweetie.” Carlisle said, and then walked out of the room, and down the stairs. They waited until they were outside before they busted out in laughter.
“Hormones are raging. I hope Edward has all the guns and knives locked up.” Carlisle jested.