Chapter Twenty-Five

Marcellus and Marcia were married not even a week after Marcia handed the amulet over to Septimus and allowed him to take over her position as ExtraOrdinary Wizard. They rented a small home by the Sargasso Sea and planned to stay there at least for the start of their marriage. Marcia had immediately decorated the house to her liking and Marcellus had had no qualms about that. Marcellus didn't mind anything Marcia picked out so long as it made her happy. There were days when Marcellus would awake before his wife and look at her lying beside him. It was those moments that he loved her most. There was something so innocent about Marcia when she was sleeping, so different from the side of herself that she showed the world. Marcellus was aware that most people had thought him mad for actually wanting to marry Marcia Overstrand, but none of them knew her like he did. In Marcellus's eyes, Marcia was very nearly an angel. She wasn't perfect and he acknowledged it, but that was part of her charm. Marcia was his wife, his angel. Sometimes, when he was extremely lucky, he would catch Marcia muttering something or another in her sleep and whenever she did so, it was usually about him. Marcellus couldn't help but feel delighted when she whispered something about him, occasionally, she whispered that she loved him. Somehow, these words whispered in her subconscious confirmed her love for him in a way that her conscious conformations could not. Not that Marcellus doubted Marcia felt for him, hardly that. It was just that, knowing she dreamt about him also, knowing she was as taken with him as he was with her, if that was possible, made him feel even happier. The first time she had whispered those words, "I love you, Marcellus," while she had been asleep had occurred two nights after their wedding. Marcia had been lying in Marcellus's arms. The sound of her voice, scarcely above a murmur, had awoken him from his reverie. It had taken him a second or so to realize that she was dreaming. Although he knew she wouldn't notice it, Marcellus had lightly kissed the top of her head in response to her unconscious confession. He knew it would be cruel to wake Marcia at such an early hour. They had been up late the past two nights talking and, eventually, making love. It goes without saying that that was blissful for Marcellus. He felt as though Marcia was really showing him everything, sharing every part of herself with him which of course, she was. And, he had to admit, he did love her body. He loved the sensation of peacefulness that came over him whenever she was lying in his arms. Marcellus's feelings for Marcia often made him dizzy they were so powerful. She didn't realize the little things she did that just won him over time and time again. How she pronounced certain words, certain hand gestures. Often, it was hard to believe she was truly his. He was lucky.
One day, three months or so after they married, Marcia was, for the first time since they had married, in a terrible mood. Marcellus had awoken to sound of Marcia bickering about something or other. He couldn't even quite make out what she was talking about, seeing as he had just woken up and, when he asked what was troubling her, she had accused him of not listening to her. When Marcellus had insisted that he always listened to her, Marcia had rolled her eyes, those glittering emerald eyes, and stormed off into another room. Marcellus had felt an uncomfortable pit in his stomach for the rest of the day. He hated seeing Marcia unhappy, even a little bit. As much as he wanted to ask what was bothering her, he knew it would be wiser to leave her alone until she cooled down. That was just how Marcia was. Well, Marcellus made it until lunch without going to see what she was up to. He knew he had gotten spoiled. It was pathetic if he couldn't even go half a day without talking to his wife. He found Marcia in the bathroom, retching. "Marcia!" he had exclaimed, before he could stop himself. "Marcia, when did you get this sick? Sweetheart, I'm so sorry. Why didn't you tell me? I could have helped you."
Marcia looked incredibly humiliated. Marcellus, in spite of the situation, was amused. Even now, when she was ill, she was worried about her pride. She had been determined to keep Marcellus from knowing she wasn't feeling well. "Marcia," he sighed, "it's just me. You don't have to impress anyone. Go lie down. I'll try and see what's causing this." She didn't say anything, but she squeezed his hand which Marcellus took as a "thank you." It was good enough for him. He kissed her cheek…and then the side of her neck. Eventually, he worked his way down to the top of her bosom.
"Marcellus," Marcia muttered, "I could be contagious."
Marcellus stopped. "Right, right, of course." He said. Then, as Marcia was walking toward the bedroom, a very odd thought fell into Marcellus's mind. "Um, Marcia," he began, but then he stopped.
"What?" Marcia snapped, her voice a little irritable.
"Nothing. Just go and lie down." Marcia sighed heavily, but she did as she was told. As soon as she was gone, Marcellus went through his physik chest and fished out a number of medicines, one of which was a pregnancy test. Marcellus knew Marcia wouldn't, but he secretly wished it would come back positive. Marcellus definitely wanted a family, which was something he had ever had a chance to have and he knew it was a possibility that Marcia was pregnant. They hadn't been as careful as they probably should have been and they had made love numerous times.
Marcellus entered the bedroom and saw his wife looking somewhat suspicious in his direction. Marcellus took a deep breath and began. "Marcia, before I give you any type of flu medicine, I want you to do something for me." He held out the pregnancy test. "I need you to go to the bathroom and-"
"Pee on it." Marcia finished for him. Her face grew pale. For the first time, she realized what Marcellus had been thinking and she was a little afraid. Marcellus nodded. Marcia still looked puzzled. "But it's not possible is it?"
"You drank from the eternal youth tincture, Marcia. Technically, you could be having children until the day you die now. It is…entirely possible." Marcia let out a small groan, but she pulled herself off the bed and took the test from her husband's hand.
"I'll back in a moment, Marcellus." she said, sounding more confident then she felt.
"Um Marcia," Marcellus said, "if it turns red you're, um, expecting."
Marcia shivered a little, but she shook her head, indicating that she understood him. Then, she was gone, leaving Marcellus to wait and speculate the outcome.

He didn't have to wait long. Within moments, Marcia had returned. She was visibly shaking. Marcellus rushed over to her. "Marcia, Marcia, what is it? Are you?" his voice trailed off. He already knew the answer.
"Yes." Marcia said, almost inaudibly. "Yes, I am. Marcellus, we should have paid more attention, we should have been more careful. I'm so-"
Marcellus silenced her by pressing his lips to hers, which distracted her, but only momentarily. "You're not at all bothered by this?" Marcia demanded. "We're not ready to do this! We're not ready to be parents!" Marcellus put a finger to her lips.
"Marcia, I have to disagree. I think we're quite ready. We have a place we can live, we love each other, we can pay for it, I don't really see what is terrible about this situation. I'm not going to lie, I'm very happy." As if to emphasize his point, Marcellus ran his hand across Marcia's abdomen. "Just think, our child is in there. I can't wait. I wonder if it's a boy or a girl. Either way, we know what he or she is going to look like, I mean, look at us." Marcellus gestured to Marcia's wavy dark hair and then gazed at his own in the mirror across from the couple's bed.
Marcia still seemed uncomfortable. "Marcellus, I'm not a mother sort. I thought you knew that."
"Yes you are." Marcellus said without hesitation. "You raised Septimus almost single handedly. Come on, think about how you felt about him. Tell me you don't want a little mix of us running around. It's going to be fun, it will be an adventure." He took his wife's hand and kissed it. "And anyway, we don't have much of a choice now."
Marcia knew Marcellus was correct. As anxious as she was, she knew there was no avoiding it: she was going to be a mother. "Marcellus," she blurted out before she could prevent herself from doing so, "I'm just…I'm just so nervous."
Marcellus took Marcia into his arms. For a moment, the sat there, each a prey to their own thoughts. After the silence had passed, Marcellus kissed Marcia's temple and said, "I think we should celebrate."
Marcia shot him a wry smile. "And what did you have in mind?"
Marcellus didn't answer her. He resumed kissing Marcia. He worked his way, once more, to her chest and Marcia got the message. She knew exactly what Marcellus wanted to do to celebrate and at that moment, she quite wanted it to, but she did have one qualm. "Marcellus, this isn't going to hurt the baby is it?"
Marcellus laughed. "Of course not. Esmeralda and her husband were at it the entire Esmeralda was pregnant with Daisy. Esmeralda used to complain about it sometimes."
Marcia's attention was sparked. "Complained? Why would she complain?"
"It's a long story." Marcellus said, "and one I'll share with you later, dear." It was a good enough answer for Marcia she leaned forward and kissed Marcellus, forgetting, for the moment, her fear and anxiety.
Surprisingly enough, Marcia's pregnancy ran rather smoothly. Of course, there were the days when Marcia would wake up sick or any a bad mood, but she came to expect them. She had also began to crave very unusual foods, possibly more unusual than most women. But then again, there was nothing usual about Marcia. Perhaps the most distressing day for Marcia had been when she had looked into the mirror one morning, once she was a few months along, and had exclaimed, "My God, Marcellus! I'm huge." Marcellus had had to suppress the urge to laugh. He, as ever, found Marcia amusing. Marcia had caught him smiling and become quite offended. Marcellus told her she was being too sensitive and that only made things worse. They had made up, of course, they always did, but Marcellus didn't like his fights with Marcia at all. He loved making her happy and he hated to think that, even for a second, she wasn't.
It happened approximately a year after Marcia had turned over her position to Septimus. She gave birth to the first Pye child, a boy whom Marcia decided to call Romulus. Of course, Marcellus had been correct in the assumption that the boy would have wavy dark hair. He was, in fact, born with it. His eyes were a light brown, but Marcia intended to change them green at the first chance. From the moment he was born, the moment she held her son in her arms, Marcia's anxiety vanished. She adored him. There were nights when Marcia and Marcellus would both stay awake, gazing at him, as if still shocked by what they had created together. On one of these nights, Marcia turned to Marcellus, wrapped her arms around his waist, and whispered, "He's the product of our love." Even in the darkness, Marcellus could tell she was beaming. He smiled.
"That's why he's beautiful, Marcia. We've just begun the adventure of our lives." He kissed Marcia and together, they made their way to their own bedroom just down the hall. Theirs' was a far more blissful life Septimus's at that moment, who, on that very day, had an appointment with Jenna at the Palace.

Septimus found Jenna finishing her lunch with Beetle on the Palace Balcony. She had been living in what many people called "newly wedded bliss" for the past month and a half since she and Beetle were married. Jenna had been perfectly happy to spend her days alone with Beetle because Beetle was helping her heal from the recent tragedies that had struck her life during the war. Beetle had just finished telling Jenna an amusing story about his childhood, when Septimus had come in and interrupted their conversation. Even though she tried not to be, Jenna was a little upset. She was still angry with Septimus for missing her wedding and besides, she didn't really like seeing him when she was with Beetle. Jenna knew that she should try to see Septimus as her brother, but it was very hard to do that. Every time Jenna looked at Septimus, her mind screamed "Ex-boyfriend." She couldn't help it.

Septimus seemed to realize that he had walked in on Jenna and Beetle during a private moment. He was beginning to feel self conscious. "Ah, Jen," he began.

"Yes, speak up, Septimus. People don't mumble when they speak to the Queen." At these words, Septimus nearly laughed out loud. He remembered how much Jenna had dreaded being Queen, and now, she was trying to act as though it was something she had always wanted. Septimus sometimes wondered if he was the only person who had known Jenna's true feelings about becoming Queen. He was pretty sure she hadn't told Beetle.

"I apologize, Jenna. I just want to have a moment with you, if you don't mind."

Jenna glanced at Beetle and said, "There's nothing so important that you can't say it in front of my husband. I'm not going to make him leave just to hear whatever your sorry problem is."

Septimus shot Beetle a pleading stare. Beetle caught it and understood. Septimus obviously had something he really wanted to discuss with Jenna. Beetle could understand why his wife didn't want to speak with Septimus, after all, he was her brother and he had missed her wedding. Beetle still didn't know why Septimus hadn't attended, but he was positive that Septimus had a good reason for it. He always did. So Beetle guessed that Septimus had an important matter to discuss with Jenna, probably a matter that only the Queen and the ExtraOrdinary Wizard could deal with. "It's okay, Jenna, go and talk to Sep. I'll wait here."

Septimus smiled gratefully at Beetle. Jenna started to protest, but Beetle stopped her. "Jenna, honey, please. Just talk with Sep."

Jenna let out an exasperated sigh, and said, "Come on, Septimus. Let's go inside so you can say whatever it is you want to say, but I don't have all day to listen to you so make it quick." Septimus could already tell that it wasn't going to be easy to get Jenna to forgive him, she was still very hurt.

Once they were inside, Septimus whispered, "Jen, I..I just wanted to talk to you. I don't know where to begin. Let me start by saying that I am so sorry about your wedding." Jenna glared at him, and then got up to leave. Septimus caught her by the sleeve and pulled her back to him. "Jen, Jenna, listen to me. I couldn't go to that wedding, I think you know why."

Jenna was silent for a moment, but then she replied, "No, I'm not entirely sure I do know. I don't know why anyone would miss his sister's wedding. It's just disrespectful, it's like saying you don't care about me! How do you think I felt when my whole family was there and the only person who just decided not to show up last minute was my closest sibling, my closest…friend. I just don't know how you could not be there on the most special day of my life? Septimus, how would you like it if I had just decided not to go to your graduation? Would you have liked that?"

"That's not the same thing and you know it, Jenna!" Septimus exclaimed, his voice becoming angry, "You want to know why I didn't come to that heinous wedding? Because I didn't want to watch you live a lie! You married Beetle even though you still love me! Can't you see that? I felt the way you kissed me the night I went to fight Cliff. It wasn't a brotherly kiss. Feelings don't go away that easily, Jenna, you know that as well as I do. You're just trying to deny it. Jenna, I know you better than anyone else, including your husband. I still love you, I know that much, and I am pretty sure you still love me." Septimus took a deep breath, this was not where he had intended for the conversation to go, but now that it had turned in this direction, he was almost glad it had. It felt good to tell Jenna the truth. "Jen, don't worry, I'm not going to try and get you to end things with Beetle, it's too late for that now. It's too late for us and I know that. I just wanted you to know how I feel about it. Besides, I can't marry anyway. None of the good ExtraOrdinary Wizards have been married." Septimus stopped talking. He expected Jenna to say something, but instead, she burst into a fit of sobs.

"Jen! Jenna, what is it?" asked Septimus, reaching out to take her into to his arms. Jenna didn't object.

"Sep, you're right, you're right, everything you said was right. But the thing is, I love Beetle too. I love him so much, but you're always going to be…different. Special in some way. Of course I love you, I can't stop. But I need to, I need to so badly. That's part of the reason I've been trying to avoid you. Oh Sep, can't you see, we can't be together, we'll only drive each other mad! I can't be near you. You tempt me to do things that I would never dream of doing otherwise. You're a sweet temptation, my guilty pleasure. Septimus, we have to stop visiting one another, at least for now, maybe we just need a little more time to get over each other. Let's try, please, let's try."

"Jenna, we can try again and again if it pleases you, but we're not going to get over each other. I once thought it might be possible, but I now know better. I will never not love you Jenna. I'm in too deep. I'm sorry."

Jenna felt herself tearing up once more. Septimus wiped a tear of her face and muttered, "There there, Jen, don't cry. I hate to see you cry."

"Septimus, I just don't know what to think anymore. Every time I see you, you taint with my feelings. I just can't be with you."

Septimus felt pain strike his chest. He couldn't imagine not seeing Jenna. That would be torture. It was bad enough that he didn't get to love her openly, but if he didn't see her at all….the idea was unthinkable. "No, Jen, it doesn't have to-" Then, he stopped. He knew Jenna was right. If they were around one another, they would constantly be tempted to do the wrong thing.

Jenna knew that Septimus had seen her point. After a moment, she asked, "Sep, do you want to make up what you missed on my wedding night? Do you want to dance with me? All brothers are supposed to dance together at weddings." She said the words "brothers and sisters" in a mocking tone of voice. It was no use pretending that she saw Septimus as a brother anymore. He knew better.

"But Jenna, we haven't got any music. How could we dance here?"

"Sep, we do have music. I know it sounds corny, but I feel happy enough to dance whenever I am near you. Please, just try to dance with me, I promise I'll lead."

Septimus thought Jenna had gone mad, but he obeyed her. "Okay, Jen, show me how."

"First of all, you put your hand here." Jenna placed Septimus's hand on her petite waist and continued. Septimus felt giddy. Jenna pretended not to notice. "Then, I put my hands on your shoulders."

"Now what?" asked Septimus, still a bit amused and bemused by Jenna's sudden desire to dance with him.

Jenna seemed to be thinking. "Now, your foot goes forward and mine goes back. We're going to waltz, Sep. That's the dance I really wanted to do with you."

Septimus just nodded and let Jenna show him how to do the rest of the dance. He caught on quickly and before long, they were spinning around the room gracefully and Jenna was laughing. Septimus grinned. No sound had ever been more perfect than Jenna's laughter. Jenna had been right, Septimus could clearly hear a beautiful melody in his head as he danced with her. It was a melody he had never heard before and he was convinced that it was coming from the bottom of his soul.

At last, Jenna announced that she was too dizzy to waltz anymore. As they slowed down, Jenna leaned into Septimus's shoulder for balance. As she did so, Septimus could no longer resist his temptation. He had been close to her for one second too long. As Jenna's face neared Septimus's, he leaned down and kissed her full on the lips. Jenna didn't struggle. Instead, she kissed him back and gradually, it became more passionate and deep.

Finally, Jenna broke it off. She didn't look horrified, as Septimus had expected her to look. Rather, she looked relieved, as if she had just completed a task she had been putting off for a very long time. Then, she broke the silence that had fallen between them. Tenderly, she touched Septimus's cheek and whispered, "Good Bye, Sep." Septimus knew what Jenna meant by "good bye." She didn't mean "good bye for now" or "I'll see you next week." No, Jenna when Jenna said "good bye" she meant that didn't plan on seeing Septimus for a while. She was really going to try and separate herself from him and go on with her life. As much as he hated the thought of not being by her side, Septimus respected her decision. She was making the mature choice. She couldn't cheat on Beetle.

"Good bye, Jenna." He managed, trying to keep himself from crying.

Jenna could tell he was struggling. "Sep, it's okay to show your emotions. You don't have to be like Marcia. She hid her emotions so much that sometimes, she hardly seemed human to me. Promise me you'll never be like that, Sep. I always want you to be yourself. You're a beautiful person, it's all right to cry."

Septimus snapped out of his emotional state, embarrassed that Jenna had noticed it. "Jen, I'm not gonna cry. Besides, Marcia had plenty of feelings, Jen. You never knew her like I did."

Jenna wasn't going to argue with that. "Well, whatever, Sep. My point is, just never be afraid to share your feelings with people you love. It helps in the long run. Anyway, I've got to get back to Beetle, he probably thinks I've gotten lost somewhere I've been gone for so long."

Septimus was amazed by how fast Jenna could switch topics of conversation. She was now acting as though nothing had occurred between them. Septimus decided to play along. "All right, Jenna, I'll help you find Beetle, but then I've got to go back to the Wizard Tower. I have work to do." Neither Jenna nor Septimus spoke another word on their way back to the Palace Balcony, each of them was a prey to their own thoughts.

After that day, Septimus and Jenna went six whole months without seeing one another. They both became extremely busy and didn't have the time to slack off. In many ways, Jenna's plan of separation was working for Septimus, but there were still some nights when Septimus would wake up, covered with sweat after having a vivid dream about Jenna. Although those dreams were becoming scarcer and scarcer as time went on, they still occurred occasionally and, when they did, they were extremely powerful and touching. Septimus knew that, even if he didn't see Jenna for ten years, he would still love her. He had been stupid to try and convince himself that she was a childhood romance. He knew better now.

The next time Septimus saw Jenna was at the annual holiday reunion for the Heaps later that year. The entire family went to Aunt Zelda's, as they often did on special occasions and it turned out to be the best reunion the Heaps had had for years. Everyone was congratulating Septimus on his first full year as ExtraOrdinary Wizard and Simon's twins were turning out to be well behaved, happy boys. But the biggest news came from Nicko and Snorri. They were expecting their first child. Almost everybody in the family speculated that it wouldn't be long before Jenna and Beetle had a baby as well. That was the only conversation that had made Septimus uncomfortable the entire time he was at Zelda's. He wasn't ready to see Jenna have another man's child. Someday, he knew it would happen, but he hoped it wouldn't be soon. Deep down, it still really hurt to think of Jenna having anyone's children but his. But even with these sorts of thoughts running through his head, Septimus managed to remain calm around Jenna for the whole holiday season. Granted, he hadn't gotten a chance to be alone with her at all, but if he had, he was still sure he would have been able to resist his urge to touch her, to be near her. Doing those things would only open up his old wounds all over again.

When Septimus returned to the Wizard Tower after the holidays, he wasn't surprised to find a few late holiday cards. They had probably arrived while he was on the marshes. He flipped through the cards. One card caught his eye. When he looked at it closer, he nearly choked with excitement. It was addressed to Septimus in Marcia's distinct handwriting. When he opened it, he found a small note and a picture. Septimus read the note, and found himself a bit disappointed. She congratulated him on his successful first year in charge and confirmed what he had already suspected. She and Marcellus had married and were still travelling to different places. Septimus had rather hoped that Marcia would leave him some way to contact her, but she didn't. Septimus knew why. Marcia still wanted him to grow into the position of ExtraOrdinary without her advise and help. Septimus gently laid the note down on his desk, careful not to rip it as he did so. He missed Marcia all the time and wanted to hang onto anything she sent him. As soon as he had placed the note aside, Septimus reached for the picture.

It was a picture of Marcellus and Marcia, both looked young and beautiful thanks to the tinctures they had drunk from. They seemed so peaceful and happy that Septimus couldn't keep his eyes from the photo. At that moment, Septimus felt his heart swell with pride. He could tell by the look on Marcia's face that she was incredibly content with her life in a way she never had been at the Wizard Tower. By taking her position, Septimus had allowed her to live the life she deserved. He smiled and gazed at the picture one last time. This time his expression changed from one of happiness to one of shock. Then he started laughing. Marcia wasn't looking particularly thin in the photograph, but she wasn't fat either. Septimus immediately understood why she had sent Septimus the picture. She knew Septimus would notice her condition. She had apparently wanted him to notice it. She hadn't written it because she had wanted him to figure it out. Septimus smiled. It was just like Marcia to turn even the most simple thing into a way to test his thinking skills. She had been a wonderful teacher, better than she would ever know. But still, Septimus couldn't help but chuckle at the picture. Here was Marcia who was horrible with babies and Marcellus, who had probably never even been around them and they were going to have a child. Somehow, Septimus doubted that they had planned to have this child, it may have been an accident, much like the one he had had with Jenna. In any case, Septimus knew that Marcia was paying the price for making her body young once more, but she didn't seem to be suffering too much. Septimus knew that, if Marcia did half the job raising this new child as she had done raising him, the baby would have a good childhood.

The only person Septimus shared Marcia's news with was Jenna, who like him, laughed in surprise and amusement. They made a few jokes about it and then Septimus began discussing other matters with Jenna. It felt god to talk with her privately again, even though he never dared to touch her.

Over the next few years, not much changed in the Castle. Together, Septimus and Jenna managed to restore the city to its former glory, the way it had been before the war. Snorri and Nicko had their child, a boy named Theo. He resembled Nicko in many ways. Septimus received letters from Marcia every few months now, and each letter had become longer and more detailed. He always looked forward to hearing from her. She and Marcellus had had a son, whom they named Romulus and later, they had a daughter as well. Apparently, Romulus had entered his mother's talent for magyk while their daughter Celesta was developing an interest in plants. Sarah Heap was no longer quiet and closed in. In fact, many residents considered her a party animal now. She and her friend, Sally Mullin had both found men to court and were having more fun than they had had in years. It pleased Septimus to see his mother so happy, even if she was being slightly ridiculous. The man Sarah was courting was Terry Tarsal, the shoemaker, who now had a lot of free time to party because he no longer had to keep a nasty purple python in his backyard for a certain, grumpy impatient woman's shoes.

Eventually, the inevitable occurred. Jenna became pregnant with the heir to the Castle. Even though Septimus had suspected this would happen for a while now, it still hurt. The whole time Jenna was pregnant Septimus avoided seeing her. He didn't know if he could bear looking at her. But he was present on the day of the royal birth, it was one of his jobs as ExtraOrdinary Wizard to bless the child after she was born. The moment Jenna's baby girl came tumbling from her womb, Septimus knew he couldn't hate this child. The first thing he noticed were her eyes, they were dark violet and captivating, just like Jenna's. Even though the baby princess wasn't his own child, Septimus still loved her all the same. Jenna named her Delilah after Sarah's favorite kind of flower.

When Delilah was about three, Sarah Heap married Terry Tarsal. It was a grand affair and all were welcome to come join the celebration. To Septimus's great joy, there was a surprise guest at the wedding. Four surprise guests to be exact. It was the Pye family.

Septimus spent all evening catching up with Marcia and getting to know her children. He hadn't truly realized how much he had missed Marcia until that night. He was also extremely impressed by Romulus's talent for magyk. And so, even though Romulus was only seven, Septimus asked him to be his apprentice and unlike Septimus, Romulus said yes straight away, just as his mother had.

Marcia and Marcellus bought a house on the outskirts of the Castle so that they could be near their son. Septimus made sure to give him lots of days off during the first year or so of his apprenticeship. He was quite young after all. Seeing Marcia on a regular basis and having Romulus around helped to make the pain of losing Jenna less sharp, but it was still there, even after all those years.

Not many people ever knew that the Queen of the Castle had once had an affair with the ExtraOrdinary Wizard. It was a secret that was eventually buried by the sands of time as the years passed by. But Septimus never stopped loving Jenna. However, he didn't spend his whole life wondering what might have been. Instead, he cherished his memories of their young love and tried his best to make every day of his life enjoyable. Because of his winning attitude and kind personality, Septimus went on to become one of the most famous and popular ExtraOrdinary Wizards in the Castle's history. Popularity didn't really matter to Septimus. More than anything Septimus was thankful for those who loved and supported him through everything, good and bad times. In the end, Septimus knew it wouldn't matter if the public had loved him or hated him. All that mattered was that he had a family who loved him and friends he could count on. So even though life was a bumpy road, Septimus didn't mind travelling along it because he knew he had his loved ones to help him when times were rough. As long as he had them, he could make it through even life's biggest bumps, he was sure of it.

Author's Note Two: Yay! A happy ending for everyone! I hope I wasn't too corny and predictable but, hey, it was my first fanfiction. Anyway, I really hoped you liked this and I want to thank you all again for taking the time to read this. It means more than you'll ever know. I'm actually rather sad to be ending this tale because I loved writing for you guys. I think I may write more Septimus Heap someday, if this wasn't too dreadful. Thank you for everything. I will read anything you guys ever write. Oh yeah, I may write some oneshots soon and you guys really had some good ideas that ispired me to write certain plot twists in this story so, if you have any ideas, you can private message me, but only if you want to. I still love to hear what you have to say. All right, enough rambling. Again, much love to all who read this. I really appreciate it.

Thanks for reading! I will post more tomorrow! Love ya!