Afterward

The sun was setting, making it very hard to see what he was doing. It sent long shadows through the room and embraced his bone fingers as he worked the tiny needle through the thread. With the darkness slightly obscuring his vision he accidentally sent the needle through the thread and into his finger. He set the sewing aside and sucked at his finger absently. (Wondering, not for the first time, how bone could hurt at all.)

Jack looked towards the huge windows of his tower at the darkening sky. When he saw it, his stomach (Or…whatever…his…pelvic bone.) tied up in knots. He sighed and stood up, absently straightening out his collar and grabbing a needle and thread from the table.

In the past week (For it had been that long since Murdock had been destroyed.) Sally had been trying to teach him how to sew. He wasn't very good at it, it being one of the many things non Halloween related that did not come easy to him. Mostly he had been learning on stray pieces of fabric, but in the last couple days Sally had let him use her hand…which, for the most part, he still left alone because he didn't want to mess it up too badly. He took it now from the table and headed towards the trap door at one corner of the room.

XXXXXXX

At the top of spiral hill, Sally was watching as the stars began to come out. It was a clear night, and in Halloween Town, that was rare. She smiled to herself as she trailed one tiny stitched hand through her crimson hair. The other arm, handless, was lying in her lap. She didn't hear Jack approach.

"I thought that I would find you here." He said softly. Sally jumped, and then, turning she followed Jack with her gaze as he sat down beside her. It was still strange…she had nearly forgotten how quietly he walked or how gracefully he moved. Certainly, for a while one could have seen it in Murdock…but that wasn't the same at all.

She smiled warmly at him. Then, for a short moment, she thought she saw a flicker of nervousness in his façade and her smile faded a little. She watched him for a moment, trying to see whether or not she'd notice it again, when he met her gaze and smiled. She relaxed a little.

Without a word he pulled out her tiny hand, which was engulfed in his own and started to give it to her. She smiled, and reached out to take it, but he pulled it away slightly, much to her bewilderment.

"Perhaps I could try to sew it back on?" He asked. And it was back, the certainty that he was nervous. She felt a moment of hesitation, and a feeling, something like irrational alarm, that she knew would come any time he ever acted even slightly out of character.

"Um…alright." She said softly. For a moment...ONLY a moment, mind you, she thought of Murdock pretending to be Jack. This wasn't like that. He WAS acting strange (His hands were even shaking…which…was probably not a good thing considering he would soon be sewing on her hand.) But she could not see any cruelty in his façade. Only anxiety…which was still very odd for Jack.

Then he gently took her arm, and for a moment, met her gaze with his own. As he did, she felt the uneasiness fall away.

Jack pulled a needle and thread from his pocket and slowly began to sew her hand back onto her arm. He did it with such a vast concentration, that it made her smile. She watched the stitches, which, weren't too terribly bad…but she figured she would have to do over at some point.

When he finished, Sally started to pull her hand away, but found it still clutched in his own. He wrapped his other hand around it as well and leaned forward to kiss her. As he did, she let out a sigh that might have been a half swoon. As she kissed him back she noticed something different, not in his kiss, but oddly enough, on her hand. Confused, she pulled back and detached her hand from his. He let her.

She pulled her hand up, soaking it with moonlight, and saw, on her finger, where it not been before, a tiny ring. She stared at it for a moment in disbelief. She then turned her gaze to Jack, who was watching her carefully.

She swallowed and forced down the tears which were threatening to come. Jack took her other hand, allowing her to have the one she was still staring at in astonishment and leaned towards her a little.

"Sally," He started, surprised at the sturdiness of his own voice. "There was one point in this last week when I was sure I would never get to do this and it infuriated me that he did it first. It shouldn't have been like that. Still, that's all over with, and the experience has just made me all the more sure that I would like to spend the rest of eternity by your side. Will you marry me?"

Sally watched him with wide eyes, then, finally, when the whole thing soaked in, she flung her arms around his neck and buried her face in his shoulder. She WAS crying by then.

"Jack, I wouldn't spend eternity any other way." She said softly. Jack grinned, clearly pleased (And a bit relieved.) and wrapped his arms around her tightly.

The stars were all out by then, which was nice, but even better was the fact that the moon was bright, and somewhere, in the center of town, there was a large fire, where everything with even a hint of purple was burning, ensuring to everyone, that things were exactly the way they should be.

THE END

Ha! HAHAHAHAHA! Wow…I am done. I can't believe it. It's taken a LONG time, but here it is. Wow…I haven't even really started the weekend yet. I hope it turned out all right. Chapter twenty was written last night from six to eleven and by then end of it, I wasn't entirely sure if I was still thinking straight or not. Tell me and I'll go through and revise some stuff if it isn't to your liking. I saved the afterward for this morning, because I wanted it to be right…and I was in no mood to finish the whole thing last night. So, against all logic, I woke up at six thirty (At the time, it was still very dark.) grabbed a cup of coffee, and then began typing. That was two hours ago. That, plus the five hours taken to finish chapter twenty and the three or some it look to write the first three pages last weekend, makes this chapter the LONGEST I've ever written. I hope that it turned out. And that the ending was to your liking.

Also, for future reference, I would just like to say that you rarely need to worry about ME giving a fanfic a sad ending. I will do that for my own original stories…but killing off the main character is NOT something that I generally tend to do. Not unless, of course, if I'm writing a story about how Jack died in the first place…(Which may or may not be the way Pumpkin Town goes…though I still haven't decided yet…hehe…that one still has a way to go before IT is finished.)

On a personal note…I would like to thank all of you for reviewing this story. I'm really glad that you have enjoyed it.

Also to Mistress of Nightmares: I hope this one did not make you cry, but rather, made you smile : )

I love you all! Thank you for reading my story!