Epilogue

Chevalier opened his eyes with a soft smile. He was on the bank of the pool, at the base of the towering waterfall. The sound was no longer overpowering to his ears. It was now rather an enlightening sound. Around him, he smelled the scents of sun baked grass. He felt dry, warm, and without pain or fear. It had diminished the moment the fleeting blackness had overcome his body, when he'd finished his fall from the top of the waterfall.

"You caught me, didn't you, ma Belle?" With a low chuckle, Chevalier rolled onto his back, reaching out to his side. Long, soft skinned fingers entwined with his own.

"I caught you, Chevalier." Arabella's voice was soft, sweet, and fearless. "I never plan on letting you go now. Never again."

Reaching out, Chevalier drew her close, and buried his face into her beautiful, midnight black hair. He pulled her body against the length of his own. Never had he been so close to her. He'd always been too afraid to touch her, and hold her. Yet now, he clung to her.

"Is this our life?" he asked softly. "Is this what you meant by life?"

"Yes."

"Will this always be our home?"

Arabella lifted her face, sweetly kissing his jaw line. Soon, her little kisses reached his mouth, and Chevalier shivered from the complete ecstasy her touch brought him. He opened his eyes to hold her closer, stroking her hair. The mounting excitement in him was just like when he'd been eagerly climbing up the side of the mountain. Strangely intimate.

His eyes widened suddenly when he saw that his hand was completely, and utterly, normal. His skin was pink, and rosy as the skin of others. His fingers were not abnormally long. Reaching up with a trembling hand, he felt across his face. He felt defined cheeks, and smooth skin. Yet it was healthy; no longer thin like parchment. His lips were entirely normal. He even had a full head of rich hair, which fell past his shoulders. Pulling a strand into his view, he saw it was a dark auburn. Just like his mother's hair.

With a soft moan, he again closed his eyes. Tears were dripping down his cheeks as he held Arabella close once again. When his mouth again met hers, he was full of desperation, of relief. It was the most passionate experience of his entire existence.

"I don't know what is planned for us, Chevalier." Arabella crooned in his ear, when they rested in each others arms later on. "Whatever happens, we'll be together. I promise you, that we'll always be together."