A/N: I got no idea why I wrote this, but I did. So please enjoy and hopefully this light hearted fic does not make anyone tear up.
Disclaimer: I do not own "The Princess and the Frog" in any way.
Since You're Here, I Can Now Cry
Fall finally arrived after many days of summer. Leaves rustled along as she walked down a lone path and with the help of her friend, Lottie, Tiana was dressed in a knee high white dress. Tendrils of black curls were tied back together in a low ponytail, a bouquet of Water Lilies and half a dozen of red roses were in her arms.
The only sound she could hear was the small 'clops' her shoe made and the tweeting of birds. Rays of sun shined down brightly on her as she remembered her husband, Naveen. She felt slightly guilty getting up in the morning for this special occasion and not waking him to join her. But she wanted this little moment of indifferent reality that she had for the past six years for herself, only for this instant.
When she thought about it, Naveen had never met him and she really wanted Naveen to meet the man that made her who she was. Tiana hugged the bouquet closer to her body as she stepped further into the cemetery.
Velvet chocolate color eyes looked at every burial site. Every single one had a name on it, and Tiana briefly remembered that she was not the only one that had lost a loved one. Which then reminded her that she always hated to visit the cemetery, it brought her mood down. Made her feel useless. Unaccomplished. Even when her life is the exact opposite, she felt still felt unworthy.
She only stopped once, and that was for Lottie's mother's roses. Elisabeth La Bouff was a kind woman when she was alive, and Tiana remembered the gentle smile she always had on. Lottie looked just like her but their personality was completely opposite. "Morin' Mrs. La Bouff," Tiana said, "Lottie is the same as ever and healthy. No have no need to be worry about her, Mr. La Bouff is takin' good care of her." Tiana briefly cleaned the grave and smiled once more before she went on.
After leaving the roses at Lottie's mother's grave Tiana did not stop walking for no reason; she kept her head up straight and looked forward. She will not walk up to her Daddy looking pathetic, no she'll be strong. She was always strong, she needed to be strong. No one was going to baby her and hold her if she started to cry over spill milk. Long ago she knew no matter how much she sobbed, wished on stars, and prayed to God. Her daddy was not coming back. So she told herself she will not look weak in front of her daddy, never in front of her daddy.
Tiana was only 14 when he gone to war and barely turned 16 when news came about his death. He was given metals because he was a man of honor. She and her mama were given a flag during his funeral, and most of the metals he had earned. It still hurt looking at them, like how it was still difficult for her to get up every morning and seeing her dad's face on her dresser when she used to live with her mother.
Tiana finally stopped. She stood upright and smiled when she read the words on the smooth tomb stone, when she read her father's name. Brushing a hair behind her ear she placed the lilies on the front step of the small crypt. One of Tiana's hands touched the stone for a moment, before she stood up. "Morin' Daddy," She said.
"I wanted to say that another year had passed…it been about five years since you left us." She felt somewhat silly talking to her daddy's grave, and the only reason she continued to talk to the grave was because it was her daddy's. "A lot of things had happen since you been gone. I almost got our restaurant during March…but was out bidden. But no worries, I still got it in the end. It was kind of unexpected how I got though." Tiana blush a bit, "I marry a Prince, Daddy. He was one of those spoiled pretty boy that gotten everything handed to him, but I been working hard to shape him up.
"He's also a good man like you Daddy, and I love him. I wanted to bring me with me today, but got kind of nervous maybe he'll come later on with Mama. I don't really know why I'm nervous though. I reckon it's because he's an important man in my life, like how you were an important man in my life as well." Tiana got flustered and played with the tips of her fingers. "Daddy, I never said this before. Because I was scared I would be alone if I did, and even when Mama said it, I knew you would never leave us since you live in our souls." Tiana paused for a long moment. She kept silent for what she thought was about ten minutes and she finally said it, "Daddy, I want to say 'good bye,' I know it's 'bout five years too late.
"But, even if I say this I also want to say…I love you Daddy, and thank you for being with me." Tiana was about to cry when she heard someone call for her.
"Ah, I knew you would be here." Naveen stood there in a white dress shirt, brown slacks, and he held a basket in one arm. He ran his free hand through his messy hair as he tried to control his breathing. He woken up about thirty minutes after Tiana had, or he guessed since her stop on the bed was still warm and tried to run to catch up to her without destroying the contents inside the basket. "Tiana-"
She didn't let him talk any further as she grabbed his arm and brought him closer, "Naveen I want you to meet my Daddy, and Daddy I want you to meet my Frog Prince." Tiana smiled at Naveen who quickly rushed out a greeting.
Tiana and Naveen sat there for a couple more minutes as Tiana told her prince stories of her father. How he inspired her to cook, taught her to be polite to everyone, and other things she remembered. Naveen listen and laughed at all the antics Tiana pulled during her younger year and how her father always used to save her from getting in trouble.
It was then she asked why he had a basket in his hand, Naveen rubbed the back of his head and gave her a sheepish smile, "In Maldonia it is customary to bring the departed food as a offering, it say that it brings the souls happiness knowing that they are still part of the family after being leaving the world of the living. It is very silly, I know, but I still like it."
"That's very sweet of you, Naveen." Tiana leaned over and kissed his cheek.
"Well then, let me present your father with all the delicious food I have brought." Naveen grinned proudly as he pulled a plat out that had minced fruits, "Minced fruit courtesy of Prince Naveen and," He then pulled out a small bowl that had gumbo soup inside of it, "From my beautiful Princess Tiana, homemade gumbo."
"I like this custom," She whispered as she saw him place the food next to the lilies.
Naveen smiled at her as she looked at the grave with bitter eyes, "I knew you would." They stayed for another hour since Tiana's mother showed up soon after with more lilies. Eudora told Naveen that Water Lilies were James' favorite flower since it was the first thing Tiana had given him for his birthday. They all helped clean the grave and arranged everything properly before they headed back to Tiana's Palace.
For the rest of the day Tiana kept herself busy with work and avoided looking at Naveen in the eyes. It was only until closing time that Naveen took her to the roof and asked, "Tiana is everything alright?"
Tiana wanted to lie, tell him everything was fine but couldn't. Instead she looked up and away from him, she stared at the stars and smiled at a twinkling Ray. "When my Daddy died…I never cried. I was too scared to cry, I felt if I cried it would finally mean I lost the one man in my life I could depend on."
Tiana finally stare into his eyes, tears were already falling but she smiled through them, "I don't think I'm scared anymore, thanks to you Naveen."
Naveen didn't know what to say, his heart was pounding and he felt honor at what Tiana admitted to him. He took a step forward and took her into his arm. It never seized to amaze him how small his wife was. He stood a good six inches taller, and if someone was behind him now they would never noticed Tiana was in his arms. He was that much broader, that much bigger, and his strength was nothing compared to his wife's. "I wish I could have met him." He said and kissed her forehead, stroking her back soothingly.
"He would've liked you." Tiana smiled brightly and kissed his lips. She wanted to thank him, but she didn't. Instead she held him closer to him and relaxed into his embrace as more tears begun to fall. Her shoulder shook and small like muffled cries escaped her lips. Because of Naveen, she knew that she didn't need to act strong anymore. She could cry and know that she would never be alone. As long as she had Naveen by her side, she decided nothing else mattered.
A/N: I hope you all like this, and please review. You got no idea how reviews make me want to write, it makes me happy to know that people like my writing.
Please review. ^^