Disclaimer: If I owned Star Trek, I'm sure someone would have let me know by now.
AN: I really enjoyed writing this one—I love Sarek/Amanda way too much, I think. I'm not sure if they ever name Amanda Grayson's parents...so I took a stab in the dark. Also T'Pol--Cause I wanted her, and she's seen enough Human related shenanigans to be completely unphased by this.
Sarek pondered silently as he stood in the bristling night-time warmth of Vulcan, his formal robes, a copper affair of intricate geometric patterns representing the most common biological numeric sequence, rustled heavily in the dry breeze. The sun was yet to rise, but the ceremony was a lengthy one and there was a 72% likelihood the temperature would exceed 40 degrees Celsius within two hours of the dawn. While it was traditional to hold such events at the zenith of the day, the off-world participants would be unable to function properly in the given environmental conditions and would likely suffer serious detrimental effects. Therefore, it was only logical to adjust the situation to better accommodate its guests. The hour of execution was of very little consequence both conceptually and practically.
Around him, gathered on the south-western and south-eastern sides of the circular plaza, respectively, were the vast majority of his personal acquaintances, several colleagues he'd never met personally, and a pair of representatives from the High Council of Vulcan. Seated nearest to the south entrance and primary walkway of the plaza were Professors Amelie Catherine Grayson and Geoffry Alexander Grayson. Their expressions, if possible, were the driest of any in the circle—their general disapproval was palpable, even from this distance.
"The wedding party approaches," the voice of Minister T'Pol resounded out, at his side, but Sarek did not turn to acknowledge her statement.
Geoffry Grayson narrowed his eyes minutely and Sarek arched an eyebrow—he'd been insistent that Sarek wed his daughter, a concept that had not particularly clashed with Sarek's own intentions. When Sarek had actually proposed, the man had become unquestionably hostile and uncharacteristically tight-lipped. Amanda had been the one to broach the subject of matrimony and ceremony with her father, as she was the least likely to incite an incident, and he did not...as she said...take it well. Apparently, he was still angered over the inability to act in a human father's traditional role. His bitterness was illogical, as the bride was not traditionally accompanied by any besides a small guard in Vulcan ceremony, but he maintained it nonetheless.
The shaking bells of the guards heralded their approach and Sarek shifted his attention to the alcove over the southern entrance. Amanda had been disappointed that she'd been unable to wear a traditional wedding garb of her culture but respectfully understanding of its incongruity with the Vulcan way. He was 32.76% certain that the added factor of the inherent heat on Vulcan helped to dissuade her from that course. Sarek's stomach twisted uncomfortably as he recalled that particular conversation and how her eyes had widened a full millimeter when she concluded that she couldn't carry a bouquet.
As the first pair of guards entered visible range, the Vulcan audience placidly turned to regard them. Clad in silver and black, shaking the ornamental representations of shields, their grim expressions held a tinge of distaste that Sarek identified all too easily. The muscles in his back tightened imperceptibly and his eyes quickly swept across the assembly—though some were more adept at misdirection, the evidence of discomfort was present in every assembled member of the wedding party.
The atmosphere, as Amanda would have likely metaphorically examined it, could have been cut with a knife.
All too briefly, his eyes fell on the Professors Grayson and the sudden shift of emotions across their faces took him by surprise. The rapid change from blatant anger to melancholia—though the smiles were another incongruity—was not one he'd predicted. He did not need to ascertain the variable that caused this change, however, as his gaze fell on the southern entrance.
Even clad in heavy Vulcan fabrics, Amanda Grayson managed to appear light and fleeting. Her gown was of a long, straight cut. It was simple, unadorned beyond the complex weave of the silver fabric it employed, and it stirred only minutely as the warm breeze slid through the plaza. Her hair was back, wrapped tactfully around the tops of her ears, and she had forgone the jewelry she'd threatened to wear. Despite her willingness to preform the ceremony traditionally, she'd worn cosmetics and was having a great deal of difficulty keeping her expression neutral.
Sarek wondered, briefly, if she recognized the general miasma of distaste that permeated the plaza. When her eyes met his, her reserved smile spread wider and he gathered she did not. There was a high probability that the flush across her cheeks was not due to the many environmental factors present.
The four guards stopped in the alcove beneath the southern entrance and Amanda continued the remaining three meters across the plaza, alone. Neither her eyes nor her smile wavered as she walked toward him—the silence around them was stony, save for the gentle sob from Amelie Grayson. Upon reaching his side, she exhaled sharply and turned to face the somber, black-clad Minister T'Pol in time with Sarek.
The ceremony was held entirely in High Vulcan. It was uncommon for a marriage to occur outside of the influences of Pon Farr, but not unheard of, and the ceremony reflected the fully coherent nature of its participants. In both length and complexity, it overshadowed the standard Vulcan marriage rights. Minister T'Pol was sufficiently eloquent and kept her eyes affixed on the space between the couple as she flawlessly recited the old oaths. When the guards shook their instruments, the time for their personal vows had come.
"I, Sarek of Vulcan," Sarek announced and turned to face Amanda, who'd all but turned red under the prolonged scrutiny of the crowd. Scrutiny, he noted, which had become increasingly less amiable over the course of T'Pol's speech. "Do hereby request formal responsibility for Amanda Grayson of Earth, and readily accept all unforeseeable concurrent effects this may have upon myself and my household in the lifetime to come."
It was the most sentimental traditional vow he had found in his research—though selected predominantly to appease the Professors Grayson, it appeared to have quite the opposite effect. The humans in question scowled openly at his phrasing and several of the Vulcans present tightened their expressions at his publicly saccharine statement. In fact, it would seem the only two present who were not offended by his vow were T'Pol, herself, and Amanda, who's expression took on a soft sweetness.
"I, Amanda Grayson of Earth," she started, a slight hitch in her voice, "Acquiesce to your request and shall endeavor to," she paused and smiled, "make optimum our arrangements both at present and...in the unforeseeable future."
"As officiator," T'Pol continued and her eyes traveled slowly from the beaming human to Sarek, "I recognize the validity and binding nature of this verbal transfer. You are wed."
Sarek met T'Pol's gaze and she inclined her head lightly. The assembly was concurrently tense and silent as Sarek turned to face Amanda and took her hands within his own. As T'Pol began the final vows, those traditionally spoken during the ceremony of bonding, the distant glimmer of dawn erupted in a sheet of brilliant yellow light. Sarek watched, with undisguised interest, as the yellow light crept swiftly across the red architecture of the plaza and splayed his shadow across his new wife. Amanda, who was standing at a slight angle to him, stared up at him and broke his gaze briefly to squint into the morning light.
Her hair lit up brilliantly under the Vulcan sun—an exotic shade of brown-auburn—and all of the stray, unbound strands that marred the perfection of her simple stylings caught in the light morning breeze and the sunlight. Her dress was tinted a burnt-yellow by the dawn and looked almost pink where his shadow blocked it from full exposure. Distractedly, he registered that Minister T'Pol was nearing the end of her speech. He locked eyes with Amanda again and, as she smiled curiously at him, he reacted instinctively.
Without hesitation, he leaned forward and pressed a light kiss across her painted lips. The tension of the ceremony released itself from his muscles, and his hands clenched reflexively as his subconscious registered the softness of her cool lips beneath his own. When he pulled away, the lighting of the plaza seemed less abnormal, more generic, and it was only then that he registered his actions. The hostility of the crowd had transformed into subdued shock and all eyes were focused very intensely on him.
All eyes save those of Minister T'Pol, who had dutifully ignored his curious actions and was, only then, concluding the final vows. Three and a half seconds after Sarek had kissed Amanda Grayson, T'Pol concluded the ceremony and the guards shook their ornamental instruments. The Vulcans present filed out of the plaza with an efficiency bordering closely on eagerness. They were followed, in a much less swift manner, by Minister T'Pol, and then by the Professors Grayson some time after that. Sarek watched them leave and turned back to find Amanda standing before him, her hands still clasped in his, with her eyes closed and a soft smile across her face. He disengaged his left hand from hers and gently ran his fingertips across her brow. She stirred and slowly opened her eyes.
The emotion in her eyes was so peaceful and undisguised, he was hesitant to remove his hand from the proximity of her face, lest he bring an ungraceful ending to the moment. She didn't say anything as he studied her face, and he never explained why he'd kissed her.
It was just something they didn't discuss.
They didn't have to.