AN: I'm so happy to finally be posting this fic! I'm not quite as far in my writing as I wanted to be, but I'm pretty confident I'm not forgetting anything. This is just the prologue, so it's very short, but I promise to have the first chapter up this weekend, and it is much longer... I hope everyone who read What I'm Here For is still interested in the sequel after all this time!

Summary: This is the sequel to my first Grey's fic What I'm Here For, though its likely not imperative to read it first, I would recommend it, as it will catch you up on Derek's family and a number of inside jokes and such that may come up. This fic starts off about seven months after What I'm Here For, and takes place in a much shorter time frame. There will be fewer chapters, but they will all be long (except for this one...). I'm taking the opportunity to do something different and fun for me; a, hopefully, interesting plot and a slightly new style.

Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with Grey's Anatomy, but am simply borrowing the characters and I promise to return them safely.


'In the end, it's not going to matter how many breaths you took, but how many moments took your breath away.'

-- Shing Xiong

Some time in the near future...

Meredith leaned against the wrought iron railing running along the top of the balcony wall, staring out at the peaceful scene of the scattered trees in the dim light of the setting sun. She sighed contentedly. Though it had barely been twenty-four hours, the welcome new sense of calm felt comfortingly familiar; akin to something that had always and would always be there. Something she would never give up.

A light breeze picked up across the meadow, rustling the grass and the trees before sweeping by her leaning form, blowing her hair around her face. She shivered involuntarily, and wrapped her arms tighter around herself as protection from the cooling evening temperature.

There was a light rustling behind her, and strong arms wrapped around her lower torso, pulling her to an equally strong chest. And suddenly she wasn't cold anymore. She doubted she would ever be cold again.

Her hands found his, and she smiled at the faint clinking sound generated from the contact. His grip tightened.

"You lied to me," she whispered.


"You told me it wouldn't change anything, that it was only really a formality since we already live together."

His chin dipped to the hollow between her neck and her shoulder. "What did it change?"

She shifted her weight, so that she was leaning back against him, instead of forward against the railing. "Everything."


"I feel different. I can't explain it, but it's there."

"In a good way?"

She tightened her grip on his fingers and nodded. "In a very good way. It feels amazing, and perfect, and...right."

"I know the feeling."

She smiled and turned in his arms, leaning back against his grip as she hooked her hands behind his neck. "Yeah?"

"Yeah," he responded reverently as he leaned down and pressed his lips against hers.

"It's like all the crap we've been through just doesn't matter anymore."

He nodded. "If it had been easy, it wouldn't have been worth it."

She sighed, and only hesitated a moment before continuing. "Did it feel like this last time?"

He gently shook his head. "Not even close." There was no hint of deception or exaggeration in his expression. "I've never felt like this before."

"Me neither."

His eyes crinkled as he smiled tenderly at her. "I love you," he said simply.

"I love you, too," she responded in the same manner, because it really was simple. She loved him. He loved her. "I'm glad we went for it. I'm glad we didn't wait."

"Me too, Mrs. Shepherd."

She couldn't help the beaming smile that came unbidden to her lips. "That's Dr. Shepherd, to you."

He laughed, his hands moving down her body to scoop her into his arms.

"Derek," she laughed. "What are you doing?"

He turned and manoeuvred them through the door and into the suite. "I'm going to show my wife how much she means to me." He gently lay her down on the bed they had already made good use of, and slowly lowered himself down over top of her.

"Derek," she spoke as his lips hovered inches above hers. "I like being your wife." Her heart skipped a beat at the smile that took over his lips.

"Good," he murmured. "Cause, I'm never giving you up."

Her heart skipped another beat. "And Derek, I really like you being my husband."

He kissed her quickly, and pulled back for a moment. "Me too." He smiled. "Now, let's make you like it even more."

This time when his lips met hers, there were no more interruptions...