The summer breeze lazily tossed Veronica's blond locks as she leaned forward on the deck railing. The yacht dipped up and down gently towards the deep orange sunset near the horizon.
Sailing away into the sunset - it's cheesy, I know. That Logan Echolls is gonna make a girl of me yet.
Veronica smiled. Ever since they got back together in sophomore year, Logan had made a point to have at least one yacht trip per summer. He would always mutter something about re-writing their first date. Who knows? He's the writing major.
"What musings grace milady's mind?" Logan appeared to her left, two glasses of champagne sparkling in his hands and a smile on his face, his movements still graceful in spite of the rocking yacht.
Veronica turned her body around to face him, perching her right elbow against the railing. Her eyes may be hiding behind designer shades, but she was sure he could still see them gazing at him with open admiration. She had long learned that with Logan, embracing romance was the best way to go.
"You know, Logan, for someone who claims magnanimity, you do have a bitter little heart." Veronica laughed, the high-school girl re-surfacing for a brief moment. "It's graduation today. It's the time for all things new! But still you want another yacht trip."
"Well, I never did claim any great forgiving virtue for myself. I just somehow accidentally qualified after all the times you've required it of me." Logan retorted with a smile as he handed her a champagne glass.
Veronica smiled in spite of herself. To be able to joke about their past troubles had been a big step in their relationship.
People say that jokes are half-meant. But the humor actually works only when both speaker and listener choose to live in the not-meant half of the joke.
She tiptoed to give him a short, sweet kiss; but Logan would have none of it. Skilfully avoiding the drinks in their hands, he pulled her close with his forearms, his lips slowly ravishing hers. His free hand ran up and down her back, fully exposed by her black halter dress.
A minute later, Veronica pulled back for breath. The depth in Logan's eyes melted her soul.
"Logan," she spoke gently, "I'm proud of you. Do you know that?"
His eyes deepened even further.
"I'm proud of you for finding your passion in life, for persisting in difficulty, and for finishing what you started. I loved graduating high school with you; but I loved what we had today even more."
Logan smiled. "You're the one to take pride in, Veronica, not me."
Veronica smirked. "Since when have you been one to care for grades, Mr. Echolls? Cum Laude, Magna Cum Laude - those things don't really matter outside of a resume."
Now Logan laughed. "It's not about grades, Veronica. I've long given up being the nerd in this relationship."
She gave him a playful nudge. "Too cool for my brains, now, lover?"
"On the contrary, your brains make you too cool for me." He relaxed his hold on her to lean against the railing. "You've always been the rational one, Veronica. I'm proud of you for not being so."
Veronica raised an eyebrow, tilting her head to the side.
Logan chuckled and quickly pecked her lips. "I'm proud of you for staying through all the times your brain told you not to - for being with me through all that self-discovery you just described. For sacrificing the 'you' and the 'I' in order to form an 'us.' I know it wasn't easy for you."
Veronica lowered her head as she smiled. It's nice to know he noticed. She really had come a long way.
"Veronica?" Logan's voice suddenly sounded lower.
She looked up.
"Will you stay" - he paused - "forever?"
Is he asking-
"Veronica, will you marry me?" In one graceful movement, Logan had put down the champagne glass, lowered himself on one knee, and brought out a sparkling diamond ring.
What did I say about life-altering questions?
Veronica felt her heart stop for several seconds before she fully processed the sight before her. The yacht, the sunset, and the champagne on graduation day - the day that, in her own words, was the day of all things new. Before her, the love of her life was asking her to be his forever. How had she not foreseen this?
She snapped out of her analysis mode, suddenly realizing how long she must have been prolonging Logan's agony. Her open mouth spread into a genuine smile.
"Yes, Logan, ab-so-lute-ly yes."
The happiness in his face was unparalleled by anything she had ever seen before. He tenderly slid the engagement ring, a big, crystal-clear solitaire, on her wedding finger. Then he swiftly stood up, pulling her up by the waist along the way.
Veronica screamed at the surprise, the smile never fading from her face for a single second.
With her hoisted above his head, they shared a soft, romantic kiss before he gently lowered her back on the pristine white deck.
Veronica rested her hands on his chest, their gaze locked solid.
"Honey," she asked with a girly flutter of eyelashes, "would you promise that your best man won't drive me away from my own wedding?"
Logan laughed, knowing full well whom she was referring to. "Certainly, if you promise that your father would actually walk you down, not up, the aisle."
They shared another laugh before their lips met again - this time for another half hour.
They've had many hot kisses in the past years, but no other experience could equate with this moment. As their lips wandered, their tongues entwined, and their arms pulled each other close in a forever embrace, Veronica felt herself bursting with unspeakable happiness.
She had seen her share of marriages crumble over the years, including their own parents'. She knew that the road ahead would have its share of pricks on the side, pains in the neck, frustrations, quarrels, or even exasperations. But she also knew that their love would fight to the very end. And she knew that every moment spent with Logan would make all the difficulty worthwhile.
After all, no one writes songs about the ones that come easy.
A/N: Thank you to everyone who read! And a special thanks to everyone who clicked the little "Favorite" check mark and even took the time to leave their kind words. You have no idea how your encouragements have gotten me through many a rough day. Hurray for LoVe forever! =)