"There's no way to guarantee a happily ever after," Booth said, his voice firm and gaze keen and sharp, "no magical spell to protect against future ills. But I promise I'll always do what I can to shield you from the worst of it."

Brennan smiled in response, as bright as the sun. "It's not always possible to live without ghosts, but it is possible to learn to live with them, to shed enough light so they loom less mysteriously, are more understandable. If you guard for the the future, I'll ward off the past, and the present we can handle together."

They exchanged a kiss like none ever seen before—like new stars in a galaxy that didn't know it was dark until the stars exploded, blinding everything in a flash of such heat and brilliance that all the matter around them was thrown back by the explosion. The twin stars ceased their embrace, linked hands, and walked out together.

The subjects of Squintland-Coptopia rose, cheering and shouting, tossing flowers and confetti as Sir Seeley and Princess Temperance passed. They stopped at the back of the church, turning and waving to all the courtiers and subjects assembled. As their hands rose in unison, sunlight flashed for an instant, nearly blinding the whole congregation as a beam fell upon two objects—a band of circling diamonds on the princess' left distal phalange, and a broad silver band on the knight's.

In the pause, they grabbed hands and ran down the stairs to the noble steed awaiting.

"Booth! You said I could drive!" Princess Temperance cried.

Sir Seeley rolled his eyes in frustration. "Bones, it's a Mustang, and I'm the guy. I have to drive, it's a rule. Plus, I gave you a gun for the wedding."

"Right. And I gave you a membership to the bacon-of-the-month club and season tickets to the Capitals, plus, I learned to make pie crust. The least you could do is hand me the reins."

He thought for a moment, then tossed her the keys. "It is awfully good pie crust."

They got in and drove off in the late afternoon sun toward the inn where they would lift tankers of mead and goblets of mulled wine with their subjects, Booth only somewhat nervously eyeing the road.

"Bones? Do you think we need a new metaphor?"

Princess Temperance shot him a look. "Are you tired of the fairy tale thing already?"

Sir Seeley shook his head vigorously. "No. I'm just saying… there are lots of ways to tell the same story. It doesn't always have to be the same format, that's all."

Brennan nodded her head. "So, what else did you have in mind?"

Booth thought for a moment, then smiled. "Oh, there's so many to choose from. I don't suppose we have to pick now."

Brennan smiled in return. "Choose your own adventure, so to say?"

"Yeah, Bones. Exactly. But not until after the reception. If those bastards from the Bureau eat everything off the carving stations before I get there, I'm going to get out my broadsword and run them all through."

"Don't worry about it. Lady Angela is distracting them all with champagne and asparagus wrapped in prosciutto."

"Prosciutto. That's a smoked ham, right?"

"I love you, Booth."

"I love you too, Bones."

And they lived happily ever after...