I didn't quite expect this to happen, but both of my stories happened to end at about the same time. It's quite the coincidence.
Sadly, this is the end. I decided I couldn't muster up enough enthusiasm to add on another hardship or trial. Basically, this will be a chapter full of both nothing and everything (and extremely short, for that matter). However, I have a number of ideas for new stories, should I decide to jump right into a new story, which might not happen. I don't know for sure at the moment.
Vonnae Thanks for the review! I'm glad you like the story, and I wish you the best of luck with your own writing!
FaylinnNorse: Aha, many brownies sent in your direction, dear reviewer of mine! I'm glad you enjoyed the chapter, I was a tad apprehensive of how it'd turn out. Thanks so much for all of the reviews throughout the story. I'm kind of sad to see it end… but there's always more things to write! Keep watching for a new story!
Eclipsa: Yes! They are finally getting married. I was getting irritated with myself for never getting to this, but I suppose I just wanted to keep writing… Thanks for reviewing so often, it always boosts my confidence to have so many people enjoying my story.
awesomefairyfire: Thanks for the review, I'm glad you like it!
InChrist-Billios: Thank you for always reviewing! You'll see the Master here, and very briefly, but I feel that he plays an important character here. I'm afraid he was rather pointless in the story… This would not be the story I'd ever publish in a book. However, I enjoyed its simplicity, I suppose. Again, thank you for being such a faithful reviewer!
The small church was brightly lit by the sun graciously shining on the day of my wedding. The chilly fall weather took a break for the day, making the day much better. The temperature was bearable and the sun shone brightly as if rejoicing with the rest of the friends and family attending the service.
Once the vows and rings were exchanged and a kiss was shared, we all went back to the farm. We had set up a makeshift dance floor in the barnyard and tables around it. Food and drink was served promptly and soon the party had fully began. Dancing started shortly after the guests had finished their dinner.
"Are you nervous?" Nicholas asked as we danced.
I tilted my head in confusion. "About what?"
"This," he said, looking around. "Being married. Raising a family."
I laughed. "Not very much. Are you?"
He nodded, his face growing red. "I don't know if I can raise a family properly. I didn't exactly have the ideal family situation as a child."
"You've seen Robert take care of Lottie, yes? I think you'll be fine, Nicholas."
"I suppose I can trust you on that," he said, still sounding dubious.
I shook my head and leaned into him. As we went back to our table, I noticed a figure in the distance, a dark bird perched on its shoulder. I felt my pulse quicken and I knew he wasn't just here to watch. I excused myself and went to him.
The Master looked the same as I recalled and before I said anything he said, "Thank you again for going to the village that day. I know I had no right to hold you at my home."
I nodded and he continued, "I am dying, miss. It does not look like it, but I am. Don't be alarmed, it was not the illness. The crow told me you contracted it. I am glad you still had the cure, for I would have been terribly upset had you died.
"I came here to ask you a small, simple favor. I was hoping you could name your first child after me. I know, perhaps it is not quite so small or simple. But I'm dying, you see. I will never have children, I will never be able to name my son after myself, or my daughter after my mother." He looked at me with a look of hurt in his eyes. "I have not led the ideal life, miss. I have never felt so sorrowful about it as I have since you left."
I nodded and said, "I do not know your name."
"What name would you want if it is a girl?"
He hesitated. "Antonia. That was my sister. She died at twenty four."
For an unfathomable reason, I heard myself respond, "I promise that I will name my first born after you or your sister." He smiled and thanked me and was about to walk away. "Wait!" I called.
He turned and looked at me with confusion. "Yes?"
"When you die… Will you have nobody to bury you?" I asked quietly.
He nodded. "I have allowed myself no ties to the social world. I will die and rot unforgotten in my home."
Wincing at the mention of rotting, I frowned. Not commenting on that, I asked, "What if I came to visit you? You know, to check on you. I don't think anybody deserves to die alone."
He stared at me. "Why do you offer such a thing? I was never kind to you."
I answered, "You seem genuinely sorry about it. I can forgive you for what you did."
Torben smiled again and said, "I would like that, thank you."
One year later, I sat next to Torben as he laid in bed. I offered him soup, the only thing he could eat anymore. Nicholas tended to the fire and fetched anything we needed. He had begun to come on the visits with me as my pregnancy grew closer to the day the baby should be born, in case anything should happen. He did not like the idea of me visiting the man that took me away, but I assured him it was fine and he finally allowed me.
A couple days later, I went into labor. Instead of having Nicholas wait for the baby to be born, I sent him to check on Torben. Nicholas was not allowed in the bedroom while I was having the baby, so I did not know when he returned. When the baby was delivered, though, he was back and came in to see the baby.
I looked up at Nicholas as he walked in and asked, "How was Torben?"
Nicholas didn't answer right away. "He's gone, Regina."
I looked down at the baby cradled in my arms, unsure of how to react. "Torben Nicholas," I said, looking back up at Nicholas.
He stared at the baby. "Torben Nicholas sounds good."
I smiled. "It is, isn't it?" I murmured quietly.
Sooo… How did you like it? Was it okay? I'm not sure I liked it a whole lot, but it was the best I could do for an ending at this moment…
Review with your ending thoughts, please, and keep an eye out for a new story!