Disclaimer: I don't own National Treasure and all the things spoken of in here that is obviously not mine. :D
MINI SUMMARY: Ben is going to propose to Abigail. Of course, Ben and Riley plan and all, and of course they mess up... again, of course, they fix things, but something goes horribly wrong... Let's find out what happens.
A/N: Look, I know this story is about Ben, but please bear with me, I could not resist putting some Riley stuff in. Think of it as a misplaced late Christmas present… xD
"Yeah mom, I'm fine. Yeah, I love you too. Merry Christmas guys – yes, I have enough food to eat here dad." Riley didn't know if he should smile or groan with his family fussing over him like a kid. He hugged his Smurf pillow – his childhood toy that always made him feel better. It made him feel like he was hugging his own family.
"Okay guys, leave the big man alone." Danny came on screen, shooing everybody away. For a second the webcam's feed flickered. "He's trying to live a life."
Riley laughed. "Thanks dude."
"Anytime bro." Danny grinned. He then pulled out a small trinket, and showed it to Riley. "Swear to this that you really are doing fine, Riley. I know you – you tell mom and dad everything's fine even if it's really not."
Riley smiled, and pulled out his own version of the trinket. It was something he and his brother had made when they were kids, and it was concrete proof of how close the two were. "I swear, Danny. I am doing great. I discovered those two treasures, I have great friends…"
"Alright. Well, may His force be with you bro, and take care. Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year."
"You too guys. Love you all… Now scoot, before this Christmas gets all mushy and wet." Riley waved, and clicked the connection off – not before hearing a chorus of good byes, I love yous and Merry Christmases and Happy New Years.
Riley sat back, staring at his now-empty desktop. He took another gulp of his eggnog, and raised his feet on the table beside his laptop. He smiled, thinking about his family, his grip on the Smurf pillow significantly tighter.
Riley almost jumped up. "Whoa! Dude! Ben!"
"Sorry Riley." Ben sat beside Riley on the coach. "So… what are you doing up this late? It's three in the morning."
"I know. There was something I had to do."
"Like?" Ben prodded.
Riley drank from his mug. "I had to greet my family. I just miss them a lot, you know?" An expression of sadness flickered on Riley's face. He turned to Ben, and asked an inquiry of his own. "What are you doing awake?"
"I was… thinking."
Riley groaned, and shut his laptop down. "You are always thinking, Ben… Specifics help sometimes."
"I'm going to propose." Ben mumbled, more to himself than to Riley.
"What?" Riley turned to Ben, his eyebrow raised. "This is going to be big, huh? You never say something ambiguous and muffled without it being potentially life-changing!"
"I have something to show you, Riley." Ben reached into his pocket.
"What, Ben, are you going to propose to me? Oh my gosh!"
Ben rolled his eyes. He pulled out a small black box, and flashed Riley an exquisite ring. It had an elegantly cut diamond on top, flanked by blue and red stones.
"Wow. Uh, Ben, look, I-I really can't marry you…"
"Haha, very funny Riley… Actually, it's for Abby…" Ben smiled dreamily, and closed the box. "I'm going to propose to Abigail."
Riley almost jumped up from his seat. "What?! Ben?! You're going to propose to the mean declaration lady?!"
Ben glared at Riley. "Hey, that's my future wife you're talking about."
"I am so surprised you're going down this road Ben. So unpredictable." Sarcasm flowed out from Riley's mouth. "Seriously though, you two would be great together. Stubborn, crazy, determined, history geeks… And the blonde actually has a sense of preservation in her blood – you guys balance each other, make each other crazy – perfect!"
Ben looked on curiously. "Oh?"
"Yeah." Riley said matter-of-factly.
"That's good, isn't it?"
"Yeah, yeah it is."
There was a small period of silence between the two after that, like both were digesting the huge implications of the ring on their lives.
"So how are you gonna do it?" Riley spoke up, drinking the last of his eggnog.
"How are you gonna propose? When? Where? How?"
"You already said how."
"Just answer the question!"
Ben leaned back, and thought for a moment. "I have no idea, actually."
Riley grinned. "Well then, let me help you with that!"
Ben raised an eyebrow at Riley's enthusiasm. Riley shrugged, and started spewing out ideas. "Oh, I know!"
"Why don't you two go out for dinner on the Eiffel tower?"
Ben looked at Riley, nodding. "Continue…"
"Then after that you two would go bungee jumping off the tower and that's when you propose!"
Ben sighed loudly, like he knew where this was going.
"Or maybe you could go sky-diving, and ditch that ring, you could give her a new one with the President's seal on it and propose to her while you are free-falling!"
"How about proposing in the Cibola… or maybe Under the Trinity church. Or in front of the Declaration of Independence. How boring can you get…" Riley yawned. "Still… it's such a nice ring. Really, Ben, I never knew you had such good taste."
"I need a place with a good history, Riley." Ben thought for a moment. "In front of the Declaration of Independence wouldn't be such a bad idea…"
Riley waved a hand, dismissing the idea as something boring. "Right, because old, dusty things turn you both on. Well, let's see. Washington Memorial... Uh, Library of Congress..." Riley counted places off in his head loudly. Suddenly he stopped, and looked at Ben. "Ben, how's this for history - Jefferson Memorial. Remember where you grabbed Abby..."
"Right... right... Riley, that's perfect!"
"I know it is. I thought of it." Riley said. "Look, we could set up a small dinner… I'd set up the lights and the sounds, maybe watch a small movie, something with some kind of history, Pirates of the Caribbean or whatever – "
"You do know that Pirates of the Caribbean is not historically correct, right?"
"What? It's not?! Noooo! Ben! It can't be!" Riley rolled his eyes. "I think I could differentiate fiction from non-fiction, Ben… Like the fact that Area 51 is conducting illegal alien experiments and is experimenting on people psychologically by spreading rumors about crop circles and UFOs."
Ben stared at him dumbly. "Are you still being sarcastic?"
"Anyway, Ben," Riley continued, ignoring Ben with a twinkle in his eye. "Maybe a documentary on the American Revolution… I don't know what turns you two on. So I'll set it up, all you have to take care of are the food, the place – you know, rent it or pull some strings – oh, and of course, the all-important rented DVD. And whatever else enters your mind."
"I'm thinking White House theme, Riley…" said Ben. "Or American Revolution… maybe the Library of Congress, or the Battle of Gettysburg..." Ben almost jumped up and down. He was literally buzzing with excitement. Riley shook his head. He wondered to himself how it must feel – the closest he got was telling his high school girlfriend he wanted to marry her. For some reason the girl had ran away from home just before graduation – and he never heard from her again.
Ben rattled on about the "theme" and gesturing wildly. His seat bounced on the floor loud enough to bring Riley back to the present. "Maybe the National Archives!"
"How about the American House Library Archives of Gettysburg?" Riley grinned. "I think Abby's had enough of the Archives, Ben. She works there, remember?"
"Right… Right… How about – "
" –red, white and blue, Ben, let's start with that." Riley cut him off, grinning. "Look, breathe, Ben. Leave the theme and all that stuff to me. All you have to take care of are the food, place, the DVD…"
"Yeah, I know, I know… But – "
" –how about you just think about what you're going to say to Abby after the dinner and movie, alright, Ben?"
Ben paled at what Riley said. "What… what I'm going to say?"
"Yes, Ben, what you're going to tell her. Or… how you're going to tell her…"
If it was possible, Ben would have paled more. He sat down, and set a shaking hand on the chair's arm. "I… I…"
"Why don't you get some sleep… you know, to calm your nerves, clear your head before the stress gets to you again." Riley smirked. For a man who stole the Declaration of Independence and kidnapped the President with a steady calm masking his nervousness…
Ben nodded, having this empty look on his face. "What am I going to tell Abigail?" He cursed silently, and shook his head clear of the nervousness creeping up on him. He didn't succeed. "You're right. I should go to bed – you know, to clear my head… right." Ben swore again. "And you should go to bed too, Riley."
"I know Ben. But I have a proposal atmosphere to plan – and my job's certainly easier than yours."
Ben glared, and swore again. He headed upstairs.
Riley grinned. "You have a long week ahead of you, Benjamin Franklin Gates. A very, very long week." He laughed, turned to his computer, and started to work.
If he knew just how long, he certainly would not be laughing right now.
So… Ben's going to propose… I wonder how it will turn out… This is just an intro chappie, not much – okay, no real action yet… I'll do my best to make it totally better!
CREDIT TO LOREMIPSUM FOR THE IDEA ABOUT THE VENUE.
Review, please and thank you!