Disclaimer: Refer to Chapter 1
The journey back was long and tedious, even through the car they had was quite fast. Squall sat in silence nursing his gunblade, which was a bit battered from the fight with Seifer. He was the last person Squall wanted to think about. What had happened was too weird to imagine, Seifer's body had disappeared and without a trace. The storm and the thunder, there had been something weird, something strange had happened. It was all too confusing so Squall set his thoughts upon Rinoa and made a promise to himself. Nothing will get in our way. Rinoa is my way forward. Being a SeeD doesn't matter as much to me as it does before. If she wants me to, I'll quit.
Laguna was in the same thoughtful stupor, about Raine, Squall and his future. Would he be able to continue knowing he had a son who didn't want him as his father, maybe only just a friend? Too late. Squall doesn't need a daddy; he has a life of his own. I've come into the scene when the bird already left the nest. All he had left now was Esthar that was all that mattered. Squall could command Balamb Garden and he would be the President of Esthar.
Irvine was sitting opposite Squall with Zell and Quistis next to him. He hadn't spoken to Squall much since his return, only once to say 'welcome back' and 'glad to see you.' Squall didn't question Irvine's odd behaviour; he was too mixed up in his own thoughts and worries. He thought it was strange to see Irvine in a SeeD uniform but he didn't say anything. For some reason Laguna was in a tuxedo.
"We're almost home," Zell grinned as he looked out the window, "I can see Garden!" he cried excitedly. Over the time he had spent at Dollet worrying about Squall and missing Leesa, he had grown incredibly homesick and Balamb Garden was more of a home to him then ever before. Squall looked out of the window at Garden as it came closer into view. Home.
Rinoa took a quick look at herself in the mirror. Her hair was done, her wedding dress was on. It was beautiful, the most beautiful wedding dress ever. "Hyne, I do hope Irvine's remembered he's Squalls best man! Oh God! Selphie! Ellone!! You two better be ready!" she shouted excitedly and poked her head around the door as two bridesmaids came into the room
"Taa daaa!" Selphie said with a huge smile and walked to Rinoa's huge mirror that spanned across most of the wall. "So this is why you have such a big mirror!" she laughed as they stood next to each other and admired themselves. "Will you put my make-up on Rinoa, I don't know how I should have it and you have such..."Selphie began to ask, as she had only put mascara on.
Rinoa laughed merrily. "Aww Selphie! You just want to be pampered a bit don't you!?" Rinoa asked. Selphie simply smiled as Rinoa applied her own very expensive make-up expertly to Selphie.
"Geez Rinoa! You're a good make-up artist!" Selphie exclaimed as she looked at herself in the mirror. "Whenever I put it on it never makes me look like this!" She grinned and hopped around in her long bridesmaid dress.
"Rinoa!" Rinoa jumped sky high as she heard the familiar voice. Laguna!! "Squalls here! He's in the cafe seeing he can't come in here, Irvine's getting into his tuxedo Zell's changing into his and I'm already in mine. Quistis is just putting on her bridesmaid dress...it just looks so beautiful on her," Laguna said as he marched into Rinoa's room to find three young woman with smirks planted across their faces.
"Come on, we have to get ready for you to walk down the aisle, everyone should be in place now. Irvine and Zell will take our Squall to stand in front of the alter and then you will come down the aisle before he has truly grasped what is going on. They you will be married. We don't make small surprise parties you know Rinoa. No way, we do surprise weddings!" he laughed. Rinoa hugged Laguna and kissed him lightly on the cheek.
"So when you marry that woman of your dreams, we will have to give you a surprise wedding yeah?" Rinoa asked looking into Laguna's eyes playfully.
"I'm too old for all of that!" Laguna replied and took Rinoa by the arm, leading her away to meet her prince at the alter.
Squall waited alone in the cafeteria, Irvine had needed the bathroom and Zell was somewhere. Something was strange and it was different. Rinoa hadn't come to him; Quistis had told him that she would meet him in the cafe where it would be quiet. No one was here though; Irvine and Zell had disappeared after telling him they would wait in the cafe for Rinoa with him. Squall all of a sudden felt very alone as he waited, sitting on a table staring into space. The lights were turned on but it was still eerie, this place was usually full of people. Now it was silent.
Squall stood up, he was getting bored and Rinoa was no where to be seen. Where was she, maybe his thoughts and suspicions he had stopped himself from believing, that Rinoa didn't love him as he had thought. Then what am I without you, Rinoa. I am nothing, my heart is bleeding fresh blood and you aren't here to help and heal. I am nothing, Rinoa, without you. Nothing. Squall held his head low, bowed down towards the floor. How stupid I was to believe that a girl like you would love a man like me. Squall walked slowly towards the door as a deep depression lay down heavily upon his already hurting heart.
"Yo Squall, where do you think you are going?" Zell shouted as they marched up the hallway in their tuxedos. Squall frowned at them with confusion . Irvine seemed a lot duller then usual too, there was something strange going on." Rinoa is waiting for you in the ballroom, I wish she could make up her damned mind," Zell grinned, he looked a little nervous.
"Oh," Squall simply said. Doesn't she care? All I want to do is see her, hold her and kiss her. I want to tell her I love her, it doesn't matter where, anywhere. "Why are you guys in tuxedos, won't Cid want you in SeeD uniform?" Squall asked. He was mad at Cid. They had all just comeback from a war, all Squall wanted to do was sleep and be with his love Rinoa. He didn't want a welcome back celebration; he wanted Rinoa and a bed. Rinoa if she still loved him that was.
"Cid didn't want it to be too formal, but he thought you should be in yours," Zell said while Irvine stood silently beside him.
"I don't want this! Just tell Rinoa to meet me in our dorm," Squall snapped, holding his hand to his aching head.
"Squall...please, Rinoa wants you to be there..." Zell said, running out of excuses to get Squall to come.
"Squall, you have no choice, you're coming," Irvine said, breaking his silence and his dullness which evaporated in a moment. The newly proclaimed SeeD grabbed Squall by his arm and forcefully dragged Squall to the ballroom, where the wedding lay awaiting for the groom's arrival. Squall was too weak to struggle, too tired to even think. Finally he shook Irvine of his arm and walked with a quick pace towards the ballroom.
"This way," Zell smiled and they guided Squall down the side of the room, to where there was a back door to the top of the room. Squall frowned; he was totally confused. "Okay, ready?" Zell asked with a mysterious grin. Squalls brow knitted into a deep frown of confusion. Before he could answer Irvine opened the door for him and Zell shoved him inside.
Irvine pushed him right up to the top and up to the middle where a priest stood dressed in all his finest robes. Irvine stood near Squall while Zell sat down; Laguna was there too, looking proud. Squalls heart heaved as the doors opened and the lady in white slowly and gracefully walked up the single red aisle which spread up through the middle. Rinoa
Rinoa's wedding dress flowed out behind her; it was tight fitting around the top and beautifully tailored. Quistis, Selphie and Ellone followed from behind, their dresses white and clingy, showing off all of their curves. Rinoa walked up into Squall's eyes. The young SeeD commander of Garden stared at the bride who walked like an angel up the aisle. Finally, she reached the top and stood beside Squall, smiling with all her love. Squall just couldn't stop staring. Rinoa? We're getting married now!
Nervously Squall lifted her white veil from before Rinoa's face and gently lifted it over. Rinoa's love shone from her face through her eyes, all she wanted to do was love him and to be held in his arms. The urge to throw her arms around his neck and to kiss him had to be held back, but the pain and the struggle was showing clearly on her face and on Squall's too.
They repeated their wedding vows before everyone and then the rings were handed over by Irvine who was almost in tears, as was everybody else. Zell was sitting next to Leesa Flick who had her arm over him trying to comfort him as he tried to prevent himself from crying in front of everybody. Rinoa wasn't much better; tears sparkled like diamonds in her eyes and tears began to run down her face. Luckily her mascara was waterproof.
"You may now kiss the bride," the priest said, himself almost crying. Squall looked deep into Rinoa's eyes as he paused to look at her. Rinoa and Squall's lips met and then they embraced. Squall held her so tight and kissed her with so much love and passion. They remained holding each other; burying her faces into each others shoulders. Rinoa's arms were wrapped around his neck and Squalls had his tightly curled around her waist. He couldn't bear to lose her and let her go, he loved her so much.
The whole of Garden cheered, their happiness was as great as Squall and Rinoa's love. Edea was sobbing on Cid's shoulder, Irvine was rubbing his eyes. Leesa Flick was crying on a tearful Zell's chest, the bridesmaids were trying to prevent tears from falling and Laguna was crying too, he was also staring at Quistis in her slim line, tight fitting almost see through chiffon bridesmaid dress.
President Caraway looked proudly at his magnificent daughter. At last moments, Rinoa had decided to let her father give her away...as that was how it was supposed to be. Laguna was going to step in, but she knew it wouldn't be the same. Laguna didn't know her as well as her father did. Besides that, how on earth could the father of the groom give the bride away? Rinoa smiled at him. Full forgiveness wasn't there yet, but friendship was.
Squall and Rinoa walked down the red carpet, they would have to wait until their wedding reception could be held in the ballroom. They walked outside into the evening cool and crisp air. People made way so that Squall and Rinoa could go somewhere alone. The newly weds walked off to the secret area in the training area. The monsters had been locked up for the night. They walked into the secret area and stood where they could see the beautiful Garden, all lit up and splendid.
Rinoa fell into Squalls warm embrace again and he kissed the nape of her neck, lightly brushing his lips over her. "Squall," Rinoa said through tears, "I've been waiting for this day for so long and worrying to. That you would never return and that I would of lost you. I'm sorry Squall, I'm sorry for hurting you the night before you left. I wanted to say yes, really I did," she wept. Squall held his weeping wife close to his chest and kissed her again and again.
"It doesn't matter Rinoa. We're married now, I 'm alive and I love you," he told her, "it was a wonderful surprise," he added. "I never thought that this day would come true, you've made it special for me Rinoa, I could love no one else, only you," he said as he held Rinoa closer as she clung to him.
"I'll never stop loving you," she whispered, "never ever." Rinoa found Squall's lips which parted, inviting her into a passionate kiss. So much passion, so much love. Rinoa couldn't stop herself from just crying, this love was tremendous, her whole heart burned with the love she felt for Squall. The kiss seemed to be going on forever, but it still ended as quickly as Irvine announced the wedding reception was ready over the intercom. Rinoa and Squall had to pry each other from the other.
"Come on. This is the only wedding we're ever going to have Rinoa, let's make it a good one," Squall said and took her hand as they walked off back to the ballroom, where the tables would rest, with most of Garden staffs in the café resting.
Rinoa and Squall entered and the whole room fell silent. They were directed to the table at the front, where all their friends sat, Cid and Edea Kramer, Leesa who was next to Zell and Xu. Squall and Rinoa sat down next to each other next to Irvine and Quistis. Starters was already served up, a delicious prawn cocktail. The main course and desert soon followed joined by happy and friendly chatter.
Selphie played with Irvine's foot under the table as they ate, letting the young sharp shooter forget most of his thoughts on Mischa, who had been taken along with Javri to Esthar away from garden. Leesa's hand had explored right up Zell's leg and Laguna kept on giving Quick loving looks while she wasn't looking. It was a night full of love.
Soon it was the time of the speeches, Irvine looked slightly nervous, he had been planning his speech for ages, but his little bit of paper he had forgotten to pick up from the Dollet base. He stood up, his legs shaking. Selphie's hand crept behind his leg and her secret touch gave him a little more confidence.
"To Squall, my best friend, you deserve this happiness more that anyone I know, and to Rinoa you are so beautiful today in your dress, not much I can say to you my dear friend except that you are truly Squall's angel and always will be........."Irvine paused, everyone was looking at him.
Reene's frightened face exploded before him, a bang and blackness. All Irvine's fault. Your fault! Irvine regained his senses; he looked over to Squall and Rinoa again and continued with his speech.
"I doubt anybody really thought that they would see this day, with Squall getting married, but here we are you know. Squall has found true love in Rinoa, a young woman whose beauty is outstanding. She has managed to accomplish something truly magnificent, for she brought our dear friend and hero Squall out of his shell. Without Rinoa, I doubt we would be alive today," Irvine continued. The whole room was a heavenly silence of peacefulness. Every other feeling had disappeared, leaving the tranquility of the one harmonious feeling of love.
"But returning to the groom, Squall. We grew up together as children, I admit, my attentions were never really on playing with Squall, not that Squall played much anyway. I had my eyes on Selphie, I did then and I still do now," Selphie squeezed his leg lovingly sending chills up Irvine's spine. "He used to have this little cuddly bunny as a child. I know what you are all thinking now. Squall with a cuddly bunny?!? Well yes, it is true, he had this cuddly bunny, and it was pink and blue with buttons for eyes and a patch on its bottom because all the stuffing was falling out of it. Squall had named it Patch, for some odd reason," Irvine said, Squall blushed and averted his eyes away from everyone. Irvine bent down and picked up a little pink and blue cuddly bunny from the floor and held it up for all to see. Squall turned a deeper shade of red. Rinoa let a little amused smile come over her face and she gave her embarrass husband a hug and a kiss.
"I had spoken to Edea before I left for Dollet and she had told me about Squall and his little friend Patch. In fact, she had even found the bunny and brought him with her to Garden where she now resides. So now, I have him. Well one day, Squall lost Patch and he was very upset," Irvine smiled and grinned at Squall who was wiping tears out from his eyes. "And he went running to Matron, who was our Edea here. So, the whole of the orphanage was searching for little Patch the bunny, but no one could find him. Sadly, no one had managed to find him so poor Squall never found little Patch. Well you have now Squall, Edea found him little while ago in an old teapot, I won't even ask how it managed to get in there," Irvine passed Squall his little cuddly bunny. The SeeD took the bunny and rested it on his lap, his face still a bright shade of red.
Rinoa laughed and hugged the cuddly toy to her chest and planted another kiss on Squall's cheek and put the bunny on he table. "I'd just like to say one more thing about the young couple. That Squall and Rinoa are perfect for each other. I think that everyone of us here can agree that without Rinoa and Squall, life just wouldn't be the same. They have shown us the true meaning of love, that it is more then life itself, death doesn't stop its working. They'd face anything for each other, nothing stops them, love is immortal and nothing can get in its way. If two people are meant for each other, they will find that person. Squall I know would die for Rinoa, he'd break every rule and every law to be part of her life because he loves her," Irvine said and sat down, his heart was beating like a drum. He always got nervous at times like these.
Squall put his arm around Rinoa's waist and the kissed each other. "Thanks Irvine," Squall whispered to his best man. The sharp shooter smiled at Squall as Selphie played with his neatly tied back hair. He looked totally different in a tuxedo without his hat on and she liked that. Rinoa looked over to her father, General Caraway, it was his turn now. Laguna smiled at her in reassurance.
The father of Rinoa stood up with confidence. "My daughter Rinoa has never been the easiest of children to have, but then again, bringing up a child is a very challenging task, especially on your own. Rinoa's mother Julia died when my daughter was only five. Something I doubt Rinoa has ever forgotten. She looks a lot like Julia, she has taken all of her beauty but sadly for me, she inherited my stubbornness. For a long time, ever since she was around fifteen I think, we fell out. I always loved her of course, she was my daughter. I know some of my actions were harsh, but I was only trying to keep her safe, though if I had had my way, she would never have met Squall. Luckily for me though, we have decided to overcome our differences," he smiled at his daughter as a more peaceful tone came over everybody, not all times were full of laughs and cuddly bunnies.
"I never really thought I would ever see this day. I've never doubted that Rinoa would marry, she has the beauty of an angel, but I never thought I would be here doing this, well, not after our fall out. I'm proud of my daughter, not because she has chosen a strong man for her husband, a strong reliable man, one that will look after her and take care of my daughter. She's marrying for love, something that can be hard to find, especially true love. I'm proud not just because she has found a man to love, but of what she has become. Rinoa has turned into a strong woman. Her heart is as strong as steel as is her whole soul. Something that has made herself comes this far in the world. Without her strong hearted character, I doubt she would have found Squall, without her caring and loving attitude she wouldn't have found him either and he may not love her as much as he does. Well, all I can say now really, is that I hope that their future will be full of love and happiness and that may they never have an ill moment between to them. I think we can make a toast to that. To Rinoa and Squall, love and happiness forever!"
Everybody stood up holding their glasses up high to the toast and sipped their champagne. Rinoa smiled at her father, it was one of the warmest smiles that had gone between them in almost five years.
"Well everybody....let's get on and partaaaaaaaaay!" Selphie cried out after another bout of cheering and yelling 'Hip hip Hurray!' With that announcement they cheered again. Rinoa grabbed Squall by the hand and dragged him outside where the whole of Garden was treated to the beautiful sound of Faye Wong singing 'Eyes on Me' from the stage. Squall and Rinoa held each other and danced that night outside in the quiet evening air.
"Rinoa," Squall whispered in his wife's ear. Rinoa looked up to where her husband was facing, the balcony of the ballroom.
Zell and Leesa were there standing together in a light embrace. Zell looked slightly nervous and Leesa too looked scared, but tonight there was love in the air. Slowly shy lips met and kissed. Squall had never really imagined it, but Zell seemed more of a person there kissing Leesa Flick. Now even Zell had love, which just showed, everyone, not just Squall could find it. Rinoa pressed herself closer into his body as they slowly danced, letting Zell be alone with his Leesa.
Irvine took Selphie in his arms too this night. She was his now. She was still her excitable little self but with him, she was almost a different woman, there was even a slight pang of seriousness about her. The same seriousness as she had had when the Galbadian missiles had been fired at Trabia and then at Garden itself. The maturing sharp shooter promised himself that he would never look at another woman then Selphie, to show her that he was serious about her. He was sure that his constant flirting with every other girl had put her off in the first place. Now he would be different though, Selphie meant too much to him.
Reene .I killed you I've destroyed Mischa's life not only yours. Squall, I hope you forgive me. Now I have Selphie, I know she won't hate me for what I did at least I can only hope.
Quistis found a place in Laguna's arms and they danced together as friends. Laguna treasured this moment as he held the marvelous blonde woman in his arms. She had changed into a red dress, a tight chiffon dress with a huge split up the side. If only she could feel the same feeling as he was, as Laguna held her close in his arms. The young Instructor looked over his shoulder, where Xu was with a young man nibbling away at her neck and ear.
If only I could find a love. I wonder who that young man is... She rested her head on Laguna's shoulder as they moved slowly to another piece of music, played by Gardens own band and sung by Zell's own Leesa.
The night was strong with the white fatherly moon looking over upon them with stars glistening above. The whole of the outside of Garden was lit up with fairy lights and lanterns; the air was filled with music but thickened with love. Squall's marriage to Rinoa had brought out peoples feelings for each other. It was truly the night of love this night.
It wasn't long before Zell, Leesa, Selphie, Irvine, Laguna, Quistis and Ellone came up to the newly married couple, most holding onto each other, even Quistis was holding Laguna's hand. Squall noticed this but said nothing, only feeling a slight pang of curiosity and concern. My father with my friend...
"Congratulations, Squall and Rinoa!" they all said to the young husband and wife. Leesa smiled.
"Hi," she blushed. Zell held onto her hand, he felt so shy to bring his girlfriend to properly meet his friends. "I'm Leesa," she told them, turning red. Squall, Irvine, Rinoa and everyone smiled at Leesa, welcoming her into the group.
"You sing very well," Quistis commented, making Leesa turn redder.
"I dance too," she whispered and her hand was squeezed by Zell. Squall smiled with interest at Zell, as did Irvine and Laguna.
"Oh great! Come on Leesa, dance for us!" Rinoa grinned and everybody agreed. Shyly Leesa nodded, she was uncertain about dancing before the crowds, but eventually she said she would. Cid announced that Leesa should dance in the ballroom, where soon, everybody who could fit in, came to watch.
The orchestra started the music and gracefully Leesa danced away in her dancers clothes, she danced to parts of 'Sleeping Beauty' and 'The Nutcracker' The whole crowd watched in spellbound amazement. Squall held onto Rinoa and kissed her as Zell watched his love dance across the polished floor. Now the night was full of music, love and dancing.
It was well past midnight before the occupants and visitors of garden retired to bed, a rest well needed. Squall and Rinoa would have to go on their honeymoon the next day, to the Shumi Village and then to Winhill and finishing with Esthar. Squall led Rinoa back to their double-bedded room and they lay down on it without taking their clothes off first.
"It's been a wonderful day," Squall said and stroked Rinoa's cheek. "I love you," he told her and kissed her.
"Squall, when you asked me to marry you, I felt so happy! I'm so sorry that I said what I said. I didn't mean it I was shocked and surprised for I thought you would never ask me, I love you Squall, more then Hyne himself," she whispered so close to tears.
None of it had needed to be said for it all showed clearly in each other's eyes. Slowly they undressed, Rinoa placing her wedding dress carefully on its stand before she melted into the bed with Squall. They held onto each others naked bodies as they molded into each other's love. Never again would the world see such love. Not one other couple felt this much love for each other. Together they were something far more then alone, two became as one and their love is the same.
Rinoa and her husband, Squall and his wife slowly let their bodies mould, coming together and then apart but their love stayed firmly sealed to each other, something which could not be broken even from the greatest distance. Tonight was theirs and they slept in each others arms, waiting the morrow, to when the rest of their married lives would commence.
A/N: Here I am, finished editing. I may have miss out some part but I hope the whole story will become more readable. I cannot find the link to the original author and if anyone knows of the link, please let me know. As for the sequel, there was one but it was never complete. I only read it once and I only have vague memories of it. If any one is interested, I may type it out as a next chapter/
Hope you guys have fun reading it!