DISCLAIMER: I own nothing. These are fictional characters created by someone who isn't me, but used in an even more far-fetched situations to satisfy my own sick ends.
AN: This got a lot longer than I'd originally thought it would get. I felt that the last chapter was a nice ending, and the more I re-read it with no computer access this last week, the more I was convinced it felt tied up enough. But, I did want to add an epilogue, so here you go. Thanks so much to everyone who reviewed this story.
Springtime in New York took her breath away each year without fail. Here in this so-called concrete jungle, trees budded and flowers bloomed in vibrant shades of every color. The hibernating sun woke to cast ever-changing shadows from the buildings of every shape and design down the busy streets all day long. She smiled as she walked the last block to work and entered the bustling building.
Ever changing was an excellent phrase to describe her life over the last few months. Her series of articles on the uncovering of a major political scandal—and her dedication to get those who would talk to no one else to talk to her about said scandal had earned her a promotion, a bonus, and an office with a view of the entire city.
Her love life—much to the relief of her well meaning but pushy friends and family was also blooming. Tristan was very much a part of her life. He was the one with her and the bottle of expensive champagne her boss had bought for her the night of her big promotion. They had stayed up until dawn, locking themselves in her new posh office, testing out the strength of her new desk and the ergonomic qualities of her desk chair mercilessly. She shushed him with her lips to his around dawn when she swore she heard the janitor coming into the main office doors. Deciding she was bluffing, he'd upped the stakes and made sure she'd never look at the window seat the same again.
He was the one that raced to her apartment at two in the morning after Lorelai had called with news of her grandfather's unexpected death two months prior. The one that held her as she cried until she thought she would crack in half, clinging to the strong arms that held her up and rooted her in place.
Perhaps best of all, he was the man that had proposed the night before—hence the reason she was particularly cheerful to every single person she passed on this beautiful spring morning.
He hadn't intended on doing it at all. It wasn't as if he'd woken up that morning and thought to himself, "Hit the gym, find the Carter file, pick up some juice on the way home, and propose marriage." It was as he'd hoped for their relationship to be from the very beginning—organic and unstoppable. A force unto itself.
Over the last few months, the bond they had formed, constantly cushioning them from the world and its petty problems, swallowed the drama that marked their initial courtship. She seeped into his person in ways he'd never expected. He found himself using obscure words in otherwise casual conversations, taking his coffee black, and reaching for her next to him even on nights when they stayed at their respective apartments.
There hadn't been time to think about it. She lay in his arms, tracing a line that only she could see from his Adam's apple to his navel with a feather light touch that unwound him. He slid his lips across her glistening forehead. Once his blue eyes met hers in that instant, the words flowed naturally as if it had been his intention all along. She smiled softly, searching his eyes quickly before she nodded. He met her lips with his before a single tear could form in her joyful eyes. He took her face between his hands, savoring the taste of her and feeling as she slid her hands around his back to trace the muscles down his spine. These moments and sensations he burned into his memory to keep forever.
They cemented their promise of love with no ring—her only proof that he hadn't planned out every moment. His spontaneity, his ability to seize every moment was the yang to her yin. He made her life full in ways she'd never considered. He inserted uncertainty, passion, and heat into her safe and organized world. Only when their worlds collide did she truly understand the balance of life.
He slipped out of his office at lunch, unable to focus on his work at all. Smiling at the thought that she was probably overanalyzing her unplanned affirmation from the night before, he strolled through the warm spring breeze as he sought out to counterbalance the scrolls of pro/con lists she would have no doubt prepared by this evening.
Opening the door to her office, he heard her hasty goodbye to whoever had the bad luck to be on the other end of the line when he appeared in her line of vision, standing in the doorway of her office. He was unannounced, because her secretary harbored a secret crush on him, and he used this to his advantage today, smiling as he put a single finger to his lips on his way to her door. She watched wordlessly as he crossed the room and set the perfect blue box in the middle of her desk.