|A Person of Value
Author: Yva J PM
Patty embarks on a journey that will change her life for the better. Alternate Universe with no character death.Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Drama/Romance - Chapters: 30 - Words: 77,165 - Reviews: 136 - Favs: 33 - Follows: 9 - Updated: 09-28-08 - Published: 04-26-08 - Status: Complete - id: 4220115
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Hello and welcome to the last and final update to this story. I have no idea when I will get started on the next story, but I will hopefully be starting with the outline very soon.
The sequel will consist of aspects of married life, with a great deal of adventure for our two protagonists. Without giving too much away, I hope that this ending will give you a little taste of what will happen in the next story. As for the placement of the wedding ring, in Germany it is custom for married couples to wear their wedding band on the right hand, not the left. The events in the story share aspects with my own wedding.
Here's hoping that you will enjoy this last bit, and my sincerest thanks to all of you for reading as well as commenting on this story. When I started, I had no idea that it would be this well received, so thanks to x-EmilyTennant-x for the supportive words about my posting this story. If not for her, I would no doubt have never worked on this story, or even posted it. So, my heartfelt gratitude goes out to her.
To Frogster and Diamond Skin for their continued support and reviews. I would never have reacheed over 100 reviews without you. That is a feat for a misc story. If I missed anyone, my sincerest apologies, but I had to say their names as they have been with me from the very start of this story. My thanks also to those who have commented throughout the posting of this story. Your words are greatly appreciated.
Here's hoping that I will be able to present you with new stories and ideas.
Four months later
"Ja, ich will," Patty said as she looked into Anton's eyes and felt a small golden band placed on her right ring finger. She smiled as the same question was directed to the man at her side. (I do)
The same answer emerged, as the pair of gray blue eyes met hers and a perfect smile shadowed his face.
In various parts of the church, Patty could hear the sounds of people crying. Anton's mother and father were seated in the front row, the couple regarding their son and brand new daughter-in-law with all the pride in the world. Deborah Reiker was sniffing as she brushed a cloth handkerchief against her face while her husband, Erikson Karl Reiker patted her hand affectionately.
From the moment that Patricia Bergen was introduced to Anton's parents, she was immediately welcomed into the fold of a loving family. Hannah and Anton's parents shared the love and acceptance of the young woman that she thought would never come to pass. Often this surprised and even mystified her, but it was the most real thing that she could have imagined.
Through their assistance, Patty was able to make some resolutions with her own life. Several weeks after her arrival in Germany, she posted a letter to her parents telling them that she was in Europe, was getting married, and made no plans to return. Through it, she explained what she had done for Anton during her youth. Now that the story was out in the open, she had no more nightmares about what could have or might have happened.
While her parents did not respond approvingly to her letter, Anton received word that several of her friends were going to be present for the wedding.
Melanie had taken two weeks off from her work and had come, as did David and Kathy Lowery. They were seated in the place where her parents would have been had they been present. The couple had managed to sell his latest play on Broadway and through that, they were able to finance their own trip to Europe.
As the ceremony ended and the couple exchanged a kiss. Patty looked into his eyes. "I want to at least go and say 'hi' to all of them," she whispered and stared to back away. For his part, Anton had kept a firm hold on her.
"You'll get your chance to see everyone once we get to the restarurant," Anton said. "The reception is going to last for hours and there will be lots of wonderful music and dancing."
Nodding, she allowed her hand to slip slowly into his. "I hope so. I think I have every reason in the world to celebrate now."
He smiled. "Just wait, the biggest surprise will happen when we get to the restaurant." His voice carried an element of mystery, and for whatever reason, she could not wait to find out what it was he had in mind.
As a smile shadowed her own face, she found herself nodding as people began to take pictures of them. She looked up at him. "Ich liebe dich."
Anton smiled. "I love you, too." He whispered as they walked down the aisle and outside of the rustic medieval church.
After several moments had passed, they climbed into a car and were driven to the restaurant where the reception was to be held, the sounds of car horns honking behind them filled their ears, thus making Patty smile.
All that was left for her was to find out what surprise Anton and his family had in store for her.
Reaching the restaurant, the couple got out of the car and watched as the other cars in their procession parked wherever they could find space.
As their guests disembarked, Patty noticed movement by one of the cars in particular. It was from the dark blue colored Mercedes that Erikson Karl drove. Curiously, she watched as they got out and how Anton's father stopped momentarily to offer his hand down to someone wearing thin white colored gloves. The hand gave way to reveal a heavy set woman with mahogany colored skin and dark colored eyes.
She stood up, thus showing the world that she was clad in a dark colored dress with a floral print that somehow complimented the gloves that clothed her hands.
As she was getting out of the car, Patty could see that her familiar eyes were now scanning the crowd until they came to rest on her and Anton. As a bright smile crossed the woman's face, thus immediately revealing what surprise the Reiker family had in store for her. Tears immediately caught her eyes as she realized how they had gone and brought Ruth to her.
As she felt her knees becoming weak beneath the folds of her wedding gown, she looked at him. "Anton, it's – Ruth," she whispered under her breath. "But, how?"
"My father sent for her," he said. "He told me of this several weeks ago when he had initially sent the telegram to her in Jenkinsville. He knew that you would have wanted her here, so we set about to having her come."
Patty looked at him. "Your family did all that for me."
"Well, look at what you did for us," he said affectionately as Ruth came over to them.
"Patty Babe, Anton," she spoke their names as her dark eyes met each of them in turn. When her gaze fell back onto Patty, a bright smile crossed her face and she continued speaking. "How beautiful you look, Honey."
Patty smiled as she looked at Ruth, but cast a glance down at herself, this time feeling every bit as beautiful as her friend had affirmed. Raising her head again, she spoke. "I'm so happy to see you," she said as she felt herself drawn into Ruth's loving arms. "You came all this way…"
"…Oh honey babe, you know that old Ruth would travel the whole wide world and back again to come and see you," she said with a soft chuckle. "Now I knows that you want to greet all your many friends, so I'll be just goin' on in and we can talk a bit later."
Patty nodded, but instead of responding immediately, she offered Holger, Anton's colleague, a smile as the other guests entered the restaurant. "But…" she began to speak as she reached out for Ruth's elbow. Missing it, she sighed as Deborah and Hannah came over to her.
"Not to worry, Patty, we'll keep Ruth company while you and Anton greet the others," Deborah said and with a gentle pat to her hand.
"Thank you," she whispered, but despite herself, she could feel the tears catching in her eyes.
"Now don't you dare start crying on us, it took me hours to get your makeup just right," Hannah scolded gently. Patty obediently nodded as the two other Reiker women entered the restaurant, thus leaving the two of them to greet the remaining guests.
As David and Kathy reached them, the two of them were all smiles as they looked at the newly wed pair. "I want you to know that you did not beat us to the altar, Patty," Kathy said as the two embraced "David and I tied the knot right after he sold his latest play. That was about a month ago," Backing away, the playwright and his wife flashed matching wedding bands.
For his part, David looked at Anton. "I'm glad to finally meet you, the inspiration for my vast success."
"Likewise," Anton said chuckling. "I really appreciated the fact that you and Kathy were looking out for Patty while she was in New York."
"It was our pleasure," Kathy said.
David nodded in concurrence. "Absolutely, you see, your story is the biggest hit to come out of Broadway in years. The 'Romeo and Juliet' like story of a German soldier and a Jewish girl has the entire city in an absolute fervor. It was such a hit, that the theater company helped to sponsor our trip here to see if real life had the same 'happy end' as the play did."
"I can't say it has, as this is not the end, but rather the beginning," Anton said honestly. "For what it's worth, I must say that it is indeed a very special one and that it has come together quite nicely."
"Yes, and you not only beat us to the chapel, but you also beat us to Broadway," Patty said as she embraced each of them in turn.
At that moment, Anton excused himself briefly to go and say hello to Jonas and his parents. As they watched Patty's husband move around and converse with the various guests, David looked at Patty.
"The strangest thing is that initially I thought it was not realistic enough," he said smiling as he shook his head in profound disbelief. "No one would have thought."
Patty nodded as she looked at him. "I know what you mean, yet this is more realistic than a fairy tale."
"You said it, 'Sleeping Beauty'," Kathy said with a smile as Anton came outside and rejoined them.
"The music is starting," he said. "That means we must be inside to share the first dance."
Patty nodded, but looked over at her friends.
"That's custom in many places," Kathy said with a smile as Anton offered his bride an arm, before leading her back into the large open room and onto the dance floor.
As the soothing melodies filled their ears, they began to dance. After several moments, Anton looked at her. "Why did Kathy call you 'Sleeping Beauty'?"
"It was the nickname she gave me when I was staying with them in New York," Patty said smiling slightly at his obvious confusion. "I guess it's sort of like when you used to call me, P.B. back when I was a child."
"But I cannot call you that anymore, you realize," he said as he removed the wedding band that was on his right ring finger. On the underside of the simple gold band was the name, Patricia, engraved. Next to it, in parenthesis, were the initials, P.B.. "I do suppose I can could call you P.R. for Patty Reiker, but that does sound rather like some strange business term. Does it not?" He smiled impishly at her.
Patty nodded with a smile as she looked down at the engraving on his ring before ceremoniously placing the ring back on his right ring finger.
Seconds later, she felt the coolness of the gold crested ring that was now on his left hand. Somehow, in the wake of all the events that had transpired, it seemed rather appropriate for her to have returned the gold ring to its original owner. Soon after their engagement was announced, Patty returned the ring to him with the words affirming that she no longer needed it and that he was its rightful owner.
Today, instead of the bulky man's ring, she had a dainty gold wedding band on her right ring finger.
As she stared down at the gold band that encircled her finger, she carefully removed it and stared down at the engraving that bore the name 'Anton'. She stared at it for several seconds before returning it to her finger. She then looked up and into his eyes. "Anton, when I first started on this journey, I had no idea what was going to happen to me, I just knew that there was something that I had to find out."
He nodded as the music continued to play all around them. "And you did find what you were seeking, right?"
She looked into the depths of his eyes and nodded. "I never thought I would be able to scale such vast mountains, though."
"Yes, but you will never have to scale that particular mountain again, Patty. That journey is behind you. Regardless of what happens next, you will never be alone. You will always have me right here beside you."
She raised her head and kissed his lips. "I will always have you, Anton," she affirmed with a confident smile as other couples came out and joined them on the dance floor.