Days passed, and no more strange feelings. Fred was with the Cullen's, but he checked the surrounding areas. He thought he may have picked up a faint scent, but couldn't be sure. Alice was hoping to have some vision, just so she would have a definitive answer. There was nothing. I returned to work, and got back to normal routine. The boat business season was starting to slow a bit. Hunter was prepared to return to class come fall. I was doing better. Adoption wasn't looking like an option for us after all. We didn't have the kind of money it required, to take that path. So we were now looking at long term fostering, to adoption. We may not have a baby. There were a lot of factors taking this route. It took a great deal of reading, and weighing our options. Finally I just didn't have any desire to talk about it anymore. "Hunter just forget it ok. We can grow old together, and be happy. Let's buy a dog. There we go." I pushed off the couch, and went upstairs to the bathroom.
His head fell back as he let out a long sigh. "Why can't this be any easier." The phone rang. "Hello?" Charlie cleared his throat, "Oh hi there. I was hoping to not get Leah. I wanted to talk to you. Alice is with me right now. We're discussing our what do you call it," Alice perked up in the background, "Evening attire Charlie." He garbled something under his breath, "Monkey suits." Alice's laughter filled the air around her and, Charlie. "Anyways, she's put together a color scheme. She tried to ask Leah and, well that didn't get far." Hunter sighed again, pinching the bridge of his nose. "She's angry right now. She went upstairs to take a shower." Charlie didn't want to ask, but fatherly tone kicked in, "Everything ok with you two?" Hunter inhaled, then exhaled, "We were looking at foster parenting, to adoption. It's not an issue with the age of the child. Legally a parent could get the child back, and we're out and back at square one. Leah is upset and said we can forget about it." Charlie shifted, and moved to the kitchen, "All I can say is be there for her. We have some news to discuss with you. We'll see you Friday night for dinner?" Hunter leaned back in his chair, "Sounds good. See you then." He hung up.
I filled the tub with hot water, and added bath salts. I lit some candles and placed them on the edge of the sink. I quietly slipped my clothes off, and placed them in a pile on top of the toilet. I turned on some soft music, and cracked the window slightly. I slid into the tub slowly, and leaned back letting the water wash over me. I closed my eyes, hearing the waves in the distance. I was so angry, and disappointed. The thought that someone could rip away, someone we'd become so close with sickened me. I focused on inhaling through my nose, and exhaling through my mouth. With each breath out, I released about ten pounds of pressure on my body. Finally I felt like my body was floating on top of the water. I hummed softly, and fell asleep in the tub. When I came around, the water was now cold. I checked the clock. I had been asleep for an hour and half up here. I pulled the plug, and let the water start to drain. I stood slowly. I decided to take a shower, then head to bed. I climbed out, and dried off.
I crawled into the bed, and laid there quietly. Hunter was downstairs working still. I had no desire to speak to him. A dog. A freaking dog. Yes something that licked itself, and ate out of a bowl on the floor. Might as well let pack members just move in with us if that were the case. Not to sound rude, but honestly it wasn't fare. Things were supposed to be changing. Emily was all baby eyed, and so excited about starting a family soon. Yay woo babies. I'd been with my fiancé six whole years. It's not like I was irresponsible. Mom, and Charlie had eloped and were married now. I did everything the right way. So why would I be punished. Did I need to go to church. Prove my prayers were sincere? I felt the rise, and fall of my chest as I became sleepier. Finally it took me under.
Friday was a short shift for me. I was done by 3:00pm. I was still in a mood. I arrived home, and started preparing for dinner. Rosalie stood beside me, and helped me prepare the food. "You've been extremely quiet. If you chop those vegetables any harder; you might cut through the counter." I dropped the knife, and wiped my hands on the towel. "I'm just," I sighed shrugging. "You're just what sweetie?" I turned to look at her, "We had a argument last night. We never fight. I told him to just forget about kids." That stopped her dead in her tracks. Her warm honey colored eyes, were wide with disbelief, "You're kidding right?" He voice was on the edge of alarm. I shook my head, "No I'm not. I'm done getting my hopes up. I'm done reading, researching, all of it." Rosalie spoke softly, "There's one more option, surrogate mother." I sighed, "It's pricey. Plus if she grew an emotional attachment to the child.l" Rosalie nodded, "I can see where you're coming from. Honestly between us, remember Bree Tanner?" I looked at her, "The vampire girl, the one Esme, and Carlisle tried to save?" She nodded, "I was hoping The Volturri would have let her become part of the coven. She was young, and I pictured her being like a daughter. I think Esme would have allowed it. I still mourn her. She was Fred's friend." Rosalie's smile faded, and she looked at me, "If it's what you desire; then by all means you fight for it. I had been prepared to take care of Renesmee if Bella didn't make it." I knew that back then. Rosalie's love for that child, was almost as strong as Bella's.
We finished setting up, and I had changed. I played it safe with a soft blue, long summer dress. I didn't bother with shoes. I always preferred to be barefoot. Hunter had walked in smelling amazing, "Still angry at me?" I looked up, "No, I'm just exhausted with everything going on. Wedding planning, and kids, work. He held me by my shoulders, and bent down a little so we were at eye level. "I will never be angry for any choice you make. I will support you in whatever you feel is right. I may not agree, but that's life. We're not always going to see, eye to eye. If we did, well it would be boring. Now relax, and smile." With those simple words, my smile reappeared. He stood at his full height of 6'3 again and kissed my forehead. "Hello?" Charlie's voice rang through the door. "Hey come in guys." Hunter winked at me, then turned to greet them. I gently touched my flat stomach, "God I don't ask for much. Answers would be appreciated. Guide me in the path we should take." I smiled and started placing all the various dishes on the table.
It was a family dinner. Everyone showed up. Sam, Emily, Chloe, Seth, Bella, Edward, Jacob, Rebesmee, and the other Cullen's. Those not eating, took pleasure in listening to us all chat. Although there was some tension, I tried to shrug it off. I sat back, sipping my wine. Emmett's laugh boomed through the house; quite possibly shaking the foundation. Charlie lightly tapped his glass, with a spoon. He drew everyone's attention, "So Sue, and myself have some great news. For starters, Sue took a promotion, she's now the new charge nurse in the Emergency Room at the hospital." Everyone cheered, clapped and congratulated her. Charlie took my moms hand in his, and they smiled at one another then he spoke again, "The other news is, we're expecting." Charlie had the most sincere excited smile on his face. My mom smiled wide. Bella's eyes went wide, "Whoa congrats." Emily grinned, "I'm so happy for you Aunt Sue." Seth smiled, and then his eyes met mine. The smile that was there for my mom, and her career promotion, had now dropped to the floor. I brought the glass of wine to my lips, and in one swig felt it move down my throat. The clatter as my glass hit the table, drew attention. "Excuse me." I stood up. "Baby please." Hunter tried to get me to sit. I pushed my chair back, and walked into the kitchen.
My mom and, dad exchanged a look. I sat on the kitchen floor, drinking a beer. Bella came down, and sat beside me. "Totally didn't see that coming." I took a swig from the bottle, "Well couldn't they've been a little more subtle about it. Shit, hey Leah can't have kids, let's rub it in her face over dinner." Bella looked at me, "Oh don't think of it that way. I know it's hard, but we'll have a sibling." I rolled my eyes, then closed them, "Wolf gene. What will the kid phase, kill my only parent? No offense, you have Renee, and Charlie." Bella nodded, "I see where you're coming from, but," I finished the beer, "How the hell can they keep our secrets from this child. I don't want desert. I don't want this. I just," Emmett walked out, and put our a hand, and helped me up. He and I walked outside with Bella.
We sat down, and I was just bitter. "So now we'll have to plan an outfit for the baby huh. So fun." Emmett patted my shoulder, "Relax wolf girl. You've been drinking, and you're upset." I looked up at the sky. Look she and Chloe can discuss baby clothes, and names." Bella smiled, "We can discuss our favorite authors, and characters." I smiled to that. Then her voice was there, "Leah, can we talk." I looked up to see my moms soft eyes looking at me. "Sit down and talk. Emmett, Bella stay please." They didn't move. My mom sat down across from me, "I'm not trying in any way to hurt you. Charlie and, I are happy. Were a family. I just don't want you angry. We just found out." I looked at her, "How far along are you?" She smiled 9 weeks. I'm due March 13th. I will be able to fit into my dress for your wedding." I felt my stomach lurch. Emily came out, "Hi there." I looked up, "I don't want to talk about wedding preparations right now." Emily smiled, "I was hoping you'll be my made of honor." I nodded, but couldn't give a verbal response. Emily smiled, "I really appreciate it." I smiled, and she headed back in the house. My mom smiled, "I'm very proud of you. You've really come a long way." I looked at her, "Sam is still an ass, and will always be an ass. I'm doing it for her, not him." Emmett burst out laughing, and Bella snickered. My mom nodded, "She really appreciates it. The fact that you're there for her, is what truly matters." I nodded, and looked around. My mom stood up, and patted my shoulder and walked inside. Emmett looked at me, "Wolf girl, you're a saint." I shrugged, "No I'm not. There's plenty of wine in that house. Only a few of us can drink. I will drink for everyone else who can't." I stood up, and walked back in. Sadly at this point, I had a new friend. Pressed grapes, and a clean glass were my best friends. Later the tissues would come.