A/N: THE FINAL CHAPTER! THE WEDDING SCENE. I hope you like it. I hope it makes you cry, like it's supposed to. I almost cried writing it. Please enjoy. Thanks to those who have stuck with me. I'm sorry for becoming inconsistent with my posts toward the end. I hope this seemingly beautiful wedding makes up for it. Third person POV!
The brunette was garbed in white, the dress was long and flowing, and there were ribbons in her hair. Her makeup was perfect, and she, herself, for the first time ever, found herself to be beautiful as she looked at herself in the mirror.
There was something different about her. She seemed more mature. Her seventeenth birthday was approaching and here she was getting married. It all seemed so sudden, but exhilarating. She was almost quivering with excitement.
There was a light tap on her door and she turned to see someone opening it. Her mother's face peered around the corner. The girl rushed to her, throwing her arms around the woman's frail shoulders.
The wedding had been pushed up because of the mother of the bride was in poor health. She was dying of cancer, and had less than two months to live. Tenten wanted nothing more than for her mother to see her wed. It meant more than the world to her.
She couldn't get over the fact that her mother would die at any given day, but the wedding cheered her a bit, bringing her into a state of less-depression. She held her mother and her tears almost spilt right the n and tere, ruining her makeup.
But she held them back, pecking a kiss on her mother's cheek instead. She stood back and gave her the full view.
"You're so beautiful," her mother whispered, crying. Tenten smiled a broken smile, and her voice wavered as she spoke.
"Oh, Mom. Don't cry. I'll cry, too." They embraced once more, and she couldn't hold back her tears. Makeup could be fixed.
"This is your wedding day," Neji's father scolded. "You shouldn't be nervous. Be proud. You're serving your family by taking a bride."
Neji's grandmother left the room at that moment, and Hizashi let out a sigh of relief. He placed his hands on his son's shoulders. "Only joking. This is your moment. I'm happy you get to share it with the one you love instead of someone your grandmother picked."
Hizashi didn't hug his son, or kiss him, or even ruffle his hair. He simply smiled, and that was enough to show he cared. There was a tap on the door, and Neji was summoned for the ceremony to begin.
"Wish me luck."
"Good luck, Neji." Another smile was exchanged, and the younger man was gone. Hizashi smiled and followed, ready to take his place in the audience.
The wedding march was playing as the lady in white stepped around the ivy-lined trellis, ready to walk down the aisle. Her hands were sweating, and she was afraid the bouquet in her hands would slip, or that she would stumble. She closed her eyes, took a deep breath, and watched as everyone stood, ready for her.
It had only been two weeks since her run-in with Akira's gang, but it was over now, and long gone from her mind. The only thing she thought of was how great she looked, and how she was looking forward to seeing Neji—who looked handsome in everything—at the end of her walk.
The tune started over, and she took a step forward, matching her footsteps to the beat as best she could, moving slowly and gracefully down the petal-lined white carpet laid out on the grass. She pretended not to see the Hyuga family sitting in the chairs on either side of her, instead focusing on her friends smiling in their bridesmaids' dressed and stylish updos. Ino, Sakura, Hinata. Familiar faces in a crowd of strangers. Her breathing evened out a little.
Her eyes sought her mother as she neared the front. She was in a wheelchair, wearing a dress and a thick sweater to protect her from the cold she couldn't escape. Her head has no hair, so she wore a hat. Her face was thin, but alight with happiness. There was no doubt that she was proud of her daughter. Despite her pain, despite her illness, she could only feel pride.
Tenten saw a single silent tear creep down her mother's pale face, and resisted the urge to shed tears of her own. She bit her lip, hoping she didn't get lipstick on her teeth, and moved her gaze forward again. She almost lost her breath.
There was the one man she'd ever truly loved, standing under an archway decorated by white lilies. A Pastor stood just behind him, but she completely ignored his insignificant presence; she only had eyes for Neji. He looked good in that tux, she thought lightly. And she hoped he liked her dress. Under his eyes, she found herself blushing.
A few more steps, and she was there, standing beside him. Tenten handed her bouquet to one of the bridesmaids and then turned and clasped hands with Neji. The pastor began.
"Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today…" Neither the bride nor the groom was listening. They were lost in each other's eyes, as corny as they knew that sounded. It was a deep connection they shared, almost as if they were telepathic. The slightest movement or twitch would hold its own message.
That's one hell of a dress.
Do you like it?
Can't wait to get you out of it.
Tenten almost giggled at the first implied sexual thing Neji had ever almost said to her.
Funny. Be serious.
I'm very. His mouth turned up in a smirk that might have appeared as a smile to anyone else, but Tenten knew the true meaning, and she returned it.
Okay, okay, you've had your fun, now get with the wedding. This is romantic.
Right. Serious face time. I see my grandmother looking.
"Do you, Neji Hyuga, take this woman, Tenten, to be your lawfully wedded wife?"
Wouldn't be here if I didn't.
"And do you, Tenten, take this man, Neji Hyuga, to be your lawfully wedded husband?
Oh HELL YES.
The couple had exchanged rings, said their vows, and Tenten was crying by the end of it. The "I do"s were the bit that pushed her over the edge. Neji held her hand tighter for support.
They're happy tears.
I know. But I don't like seeing you cry. Tenten blushed.
"Then by the power vested in me, I now pronounce you husband and wife. You may now…"
Give the man a smacker?
Make out with your wife?
"…kiss the bride."
The couple drew together, exchanging a chaste kiss for the audience, with promises of more to each other later. They turned, hand in hand and the crowd started to cheer. Everyone stood and clapped, screamed, cheered, and asked for another kiss. There were many flashes as pictures were taken, and rice came pouring down upon them. Tenten had to resist the urge to send her hand in after the stray gains that went down her dress.
Throughout all that, all Tenten could do was hold Neji's hand and turn to her mother, who's eyes were closed to stop the tears.
"Mom! Mom, this is the greatest day of my life!" The girl rushed to her mother's side and hugged her. When she pulled back, her mother's eyes did not open. "Mom?"
Her voice was shaking, and her smile was gone. The crowd was oblivious, and they kept screaming and cheering, throwing rice, meeting with friends, getting ready to go to the reception. Only Neji and her friends noticed that the mother of the bride was gone.
Am arm wrapped around her shoulder and she tilted her head back and cried quietly, the tears that were once happy now sliding down her cheeks in pain, sorrow the only emotion she could manage at the moment.
A/N: I only ever write sad things. I'm so depressing. Please, tell me what you thought, and what you liked/didn't like about this chapter, or the fic in general. It was one of my first, started back in '07. I still think of it fondly. It's like a child to me, one that has grown and left home.
Damn, I'm depressing. I need help. I HOPE YOU LOVED IT LIKE I DID.