By Roby Carr
Epilogue: 'Til Death Do Us Part
Warning: This chapter contains gushy, mushy, fluffy, adorable romance between Clay and Laurel the OC. If you cannot handle a bunch of Clay/OC cotton candy, then do not read this chapter. It is not necessary to complete the story, merely to tie up a few of the loose ends.
(Several years later...)
"We're going to be Dragons!" Kimiko cheered and flung her arms around Raimundo.
All four Xiaolin warriors were now older. Omi was fifteen, Kimiko was sixteen, Raimundo was seventeen and Clay was eighteen, a full adult finally. They were all considerably changed. Raimundo and Kimiko were now dating, having gotten around to admitting they liked each other finally, and Omi had been announced as a true Master of the Xiaolin Temple on his fifteenth birthday - not that any of the others teased him any less now that he was a Master.
Two years had passed since Laurel had betrayed them and Wuya and Jack Spicer had continued to bother them as was expected. But hardly any of the warriors even remembered Laurel Nee or her betrayal.
"Y'all here tha'? We're gonna be Dragons!" Clay repeated, glancing over at the steps where a familiar curly-haired blonde sat. She was smiling detachedly - as was normal - but her expression was one of genuine happiness reflected in a pair of brilliant blue eyes. The girl nodded and she stood up, but there wasn't any need for her to head towards the Dragons. Clay had already crossed the expanse between them in a few long strides and had embraced her warmly.
"Yeah, I did," she replied softly, the calm, quiet voice yet another familiar thing about her, "I'm really proud that you guys all finally made it."
Clay grinned down at the curly, blonde head and quickly banished the ever-present memories of a time when he'd called her Laurel Nee, a false name created for the purpose of gaining their trust. But now she was Andrah Aquilla, a high priestess of Roma Nova instead of the Xiaolin Dragon of Lightning. And he was really glad about that. He was glad that Andrah had told him the truth. That Master Fung had allowed her to return to Roma Nova and finish up her business there. That she had found the courage to reject the Roma Novan crown prince's marriage proposal. That she had returned from Roma Nova and decided to train her magic at the Xiaolin Temple.
But most of all, he was glad that she was Andrah - not Laurel. Because Andrah loved him.
"You okay, cowboy?" Andrah's smooth voice asked as she wrapped her arms around his neck and glanced up at him, concerned, "You're suddenly so quiet. Is something wrong? Did I do something, Clay?"
Clay smiled and moved one hand up to ruffle her hair while he pulled her closer, "Nah. Don' worry 'bout it, Andrah. Everythin' is alrigh'. Jus' thinkin' 'bout somethin'."
"I'll go train. You guys should be celebrating, just the four of you. I wasn't especially helpful a while back-" Andrah was cut off when Clay pulled away from her and calmly placed a hand over her mouth, muffling any words.
"Andrah..." Kimiko mumbled and Raimundo's arms tightened around his girlfriend's waist. The air was suddenly tenser. Despite the fact that no one had even begun to forget Andrah's previous betrayal, it was an unspoken law that no one would bring it up.
"It is most foolish of you to think that you are still indebted to us because of this," Omi decided, fine lines appearing at the edges of his mouth when he frowned, "We have forgiven your misjudgment. You do not have any obligation to stay with us..."
Clay's eyes widened. Andrah was finally back at the temple, wrapped tightly in his arms, and now Omi was going to tell her she could leave them whenever she wanted to? But that wasn't fair! Clay'd been waiting for too long to be with Andrah and he couldn't stand having her leave now.
"I do..." the blonde girl spoke softly, glancing up and feigning a small smile, "I have an obligation to stay here because my friends are all here. My family is here."
A grin broke out on Kimiko's face. That was what she should have expected from her best friend - not that Andrah would actually leave them behind to head out into the world.
"Hey, Andrah..." Clay murmured as the conversation between Raimundo, Kimiko, and Omi turned to nostalgia for their favorite Xiaolin Showdowns and Shen-Gong-Wu, "Y'all mind talkin' t' mah for a second? It's importan'." Andrah nodded and followed Clay without hesitation as he led her around to another side of the dojo.
"What's up, Clay?" she asked, smile twisted up in the way that made Clay grin every time he saw it. He was the luckiest guy alive to have a girl like Andrah and he wanted to make it permanent. He didn't want their relationship bound by just love for each other. He wanted it official.
"Andrah... Y'all know tha' we've been datin' for 'bout two years now an' Ah really care 'bout ya an' everythin'... An' Ah been thinkin' for a while 'bout this an' Ah'm mighty sure tha' this is what Ah wanna be doin'... Ah can't think of any real fancy way t' put this, so Ah'm jus' gonna ask straigh' out an' hope for the best." Clay paused and smiled charmingly as he took her hands in his. "Will ya marry mah, Andrah?"
Andrah's pretty blue eyes widened and she gasped for air for a moment, her breath suddenly gone. She looked a little like she'd been punched in the stomach and had her air knocked out of her. Clay shifted uncomfortably and his grip on her hands tightened.
"Ah don' have a ring or nothin' righ' now, but Ah'll get one as soon as Ah have the money, an' Ah can protect ya, an' Ah'm the Xiaolin Dragon of Earth, an'-" Clay was cut off as he was tugged forward, almost tripping at the sudden movement. Andrah had clasped her arms around his neck, pulling her much taller boyfriend closer to her. Clay embraced her back, a little awkwardly because he was waiting for an answer. He shifted again and pulled away from Andrah and frowned. "Andrah, it sorta took a lil' while t' get up the courage t' ask ya tha' an' it'd be mighty kind of ya t' answer."
The blonde girl laughed softly to herself and embraced him again. "Don't you worry your pretty lil' head, Clay," she giggled close to his ear, "Of course I'll marry you. I don't care what you are or what you can give me - I care who you are and how much you love me."
The cowboy smiled down at his fiancé. "Mah name is Clay an' Ah'll love y'all 'til death do us part."
a/n; I'm sorry if this chapter is a little too 'Awww...' for everyone out there, but I was watching Win A Date With Tad Hamilton earlier today and that is without a doubt, the fluffiest movie ever filmed. I spent five minutes afterward running around my house to tell my family that I loved them. Yeah, me. Scary, huh?
There isn't much else to say yet again. Sadly (or not so sadly for those who hated this story and read it anyway), this is the last chapter. It was actually only created because I felt an extreme urge to give this story more of a happy ending and make Laurel more of Andrah instead. Plus, I totally love Clay so this is my one VERY Mary Sue-ish chapter in which I've given myself the chance to fulfill the dreams of every Clay-lovin' fangirl who has ever seen Xiaolin Showdown.
It occurred to me earlier today (well, yesterday actually) that Raimundo probably would've used the Jet Bootsu at the beginning of chapter three so he could get Laurel down from that tree, right? I didn't actually find out what the Jet Bootsu did until a couple of days ago. I was watching the Shard of Lightning episode that my cousin taped for me and BOOM! Clay was using it to do his chores. So, now I know!
Not sure what else to say.
- Roby Carr