So here we are at the end. I want to say thanks once more to torie8988 for posting the challenge for the fanfic, and a special thanks to all those who reviewed!
Kpfan72491: Thanks so much!
NintendoGal55: Oh, it'll happen. Pretty soon, actually. Just wait and see :) And I'm glad to hear that I don't sound conceited - I really did love that last scene. Yes, yes, they do rule, they make me all sappy inside!
TTfanTT: Thank you lots! I hope this chapter doesn't disappoint.
Loonytunecrazy: I'm glad you think so! I think the way he proposes is adorable, too; I'm just glad that Arnold is such an awesome character that when I force him to propose in a potentially very embarrassing situation it actually works!
Twilight's-Mystery: Thanks! I am very happy to hear that you think it's romantic - I do as well, but I didn't know if it would go off very well! (I got giggly when I was writing it...yep.) I never saw myself as a fluff writer...but it's a lot of fun...so more may be coming! A good guess about Phoebe, but she isn't pregnant in this story. You'll see why the party is special pretty soon...
Thundercatroar: Thanks so much - both for reviewing and for being honest with me about my being too worried about what others think. I was half-joking when I wrote that at the bottom, but I was nervous about how the romance would come off to others - you were right in saying that as long as I liked it, that was what mattered. I'm just glad that others like it too! I really appreciate your reviews. Here comes the next chapter!
acosta perez jose ramiro: It would have been even better timing if he hadn't broken through the floor first! Hehehe Poor Arnold, he had a plan but then it fell through. That is a good point about why he needed her to let go of him beforehand, I didn't even think about that!
Disclaimer: I do not own Hey Arnold! or any of its characters. I am just a rabid fan.
The neighborhood was nearly silent. All that could be heard were birds calling good night to each other, the hum of traffic from nearby downtown, and the wind whistling through the branches and boards of Mighty Pete. And Arnold, the man dangling from the branches and boards of Mighty Pete, was silent and sweating bullets. Why isn't Helga saying anything?
"Ouch. Should I take that as a no?" he half-joked, but then felt a jolt of terror. What if that is a no? Why did I propose right here – I should've waited until we were on the ground…Proposing to a girl where you had your first kiss would be a lot more romantic if I standing on the spot, not through it...I must look like a joke. He frowned slightly. But she'd still respond even if it was a no…is she okay? His eyes widened. What if she passed out? She was saying that her arms were bothering her before she grabbed me – what if the pain was too much? He finally relinquished the ring box and put it on the floorboards, hoisting himself up to look at her. I shouldn't have let her hold me for so long!
Helga was kneeling not far away from where he was, her eyes closed and her hands clasped near her heart. There was a blissful look on her face.
"Shh," she whispered, not unkindly.
"Shh, Football Head," she whispered blissfully, "I'm trying to savor this moment."
"You're 'savoring the moment?'"
"Shh. Yes, Arnold. Hold on a minute."
Arnold lowered himself back down through the hole, and went back to dangling, his heart suddenly warm and light. She's okay! And savoring the moment…that has to be good, right? He shifted his weight a little bit as he waited; although he'd never admit it to Helga, his arms were becoming exhausted. Well, at least now I can be grateful to Coach Wittenberg – all of those years of weird training did pay off.
Helga's voice came floating down to him. "I've wanted to hear you say those words for so long, Arnold. And now that you have…I can't believe it."
"Not like you imagined it was going to be, I guess?" He winced in embarrassment. Definitely should have waited until later.
She started laughing. "No, not really. Then again, at the same time I was imagining that I was President of the United States. I'm not sure where that came from."
So she was laughing at her imagination, not at my proposal. That's good. He grinned, "Hey! Who says that a famous novelist can't be the president, too?"
"I do. I don't want to be the President. I just want to be happy and write my books." Her voice grew tender. "I want you, Arnold."
If his heart grew any lighter, it was going to fly out of his chest. "So does that mean –?"
She laughed. "What other answer do you expect me to give, Arnold?"
"So...shall we go through it again, with the standard question and answer?"
"Why not? You can't beat the classics." Her joking manner didn't quite cover the excitement and elation in her voice.
"All right." He reached up, grabbed the box, and held it open once more. "Helga G. Pataki, will you marry me?"
The birds stopped singing, the wind in the trees was muffled, and Arnold was pretty sure that the hum of the downtown traffic came to a standstill – all drowned out by Helga's triumphant shriek of a "Yes!"
Suddenly, Helga had grabbed both of his arms, and he let go of the floor in surprise. "Helga! You shouldn't, your arms-"
"Oh, just shut up and kiss me, you fool."
He was happy to oblige. When she'd let go of his arms and he returned his grip to the floor, he picked up the box again and pulled the ring out. "May I?"
She offered her hand towards him, her fingers splayed out wide. "Please do."
He slid the ring onto her finger. It was a perfect fit. She held it up against the moonlight and watched it catch the moon's rays. He thought that the sparkling in her eyes far out-dazzled any little rock he could get her.
"Oh, Arnold…I wish that I could hold you right now."
He sighed, "Me too. But we'll have to wait – and when we're at the engagement part– oops." If he thought that only one arm could have held him up at this point, he would've smacked himself in the forehead. He'd let the surprise slip out…well, he was emotionally and physically drained, and ecstatically happy – it's hard to keep secrets!
"Engagement party? You mean Phoebe's giving that party for-" she looked at Arnold. "So we were going to our own engagement party, and you didn't tell me?"
He looked cheekily up at her. "Surprise?" he ventured tentatively.
"Oh, Arnold. What if I'd said no?"
"Well...I would've come up with something – but I didn't think you would have said no. You mad?"
"Of course not," she bent over the hand that had placed the engagement ring on her finger and kissed it, "but you're a bold kid, Arnold."
"Hey! That's my line!"
They both looked down in surprise towards the source of the voice. "Gerald?"
"Hey, you two lovebirds." Gerald was standing right below them, Phoebe and Brainy beside him. Phoebe was holding a great wadded mass in her arms. "Having fun up there?"
"Oh, as much as can be expected." Arnold called back, "but I think that we'd be having more fun down there. Sorry that we're late."
"It is hard to have a party with the guests of honor not present." Gerald nodded, laughing.
"Did he do it, Helga? Did he? Did he?" Phoebe cried out. Helga held up her hand so that Phoebe could see the ring. Phoebe gave a very un-Phoebe-like squeal and began jumping up and down. "Oh, I knew it, I knew it, I knew it! I'm so happy for you both!"
Brainy put a hand on Phoebe's shoulder and grinned. "Don't you think that this celebration would be a lot better if they were down here? Let's get them out of the tree first!" The three on the ground unrolled the great mass in Phoebe's arms – a giant blanket. "Okay, Arnold, jump!"
Usually, Arnold was a bit afraid of heights – however, he did not even hesitate. He let go of the tree house and landed in the blanket. Jumping up so that Helga could follow him, he began trying to rub the soreness out of his arms. "Thanks guys – especially you, Brainy. I didn't even think of using something like that."
"You okay, man?" Gerald asked him.
"Oh, sure. I just don't think I want to hold anything for a couple of hours at least."
Helga was not quite as eager as Arnold to jump into the blanket, but, with a little coaxing on his part, she too left the tree house. No sooner had she landed then she had launched herself into Arnold's arms. Brainy laughed, "You were saying, Arnold?"
"This is totally worth it."
Helga then flew over to Phoebe, who had dropped her corner of the blanket, and together they began jumping up and down and squealing like teenagers. The three men stood next to each other and shook their heads in amusement. Women.
"Some things never change, huh guys?" Gerald said.
"Nope." Arnold replied.
"I guess I could say that Helga's finally fallen for you," Brainy chuckled, "but you know what Helga told me about puns, so I'd better not." His voice sobered a little, "Besides, it's not technically true – she fell for you a long time ago."
Surprised by the suddenly serious tone in his friend's voice, Arnold turned to Brainy. For a second, he thought he saw a glint of sadness in his friend's gaze, but then it became all genuine merriment as he thumped Arnold on the back. "Congratulations!"
I must have imagined it, Arnold thought, and smiled gratefully at Brainy.
"Come on, girls. We're already late to our own party!" Gerald called. Brainy picked up the blanket and headed towards Phoebe's house, Phoebe and Gerald walking beside him. The newly engaged lingered behind. As they reached for each other's hands, Helga's diamond scratched gently across Arnold's wrist, reminding him that this was all real. It was really happening – Helga had agreed to marry him!
Unbidden, a snatch of a song from their childhood days sprang into Arnold's head as he and his fiancée began to follow their friends.
Arnold and Helga, sittin' in a tree.
Not a bad idea, he thought to himself, and he suited the action to the word.
A/N: I don't know how you guys plan out your stories when you write them, but I tend to have a broad outline sketched out and then random lines I want my characters to say just pop into my head. For example, Helga's "You're a bold kid, Arnold" followed by Gerald's "Hey, that's my line!" was one of the first things that I thought of when I started this story. I also had a bunch of really bad puns in my head that Brainy could have said for the chapter, as I have a real affinity for terrible puns, but I didn't want to inflict them on you (hehehe).
Anyway, there you are - the end of my very first fanfic with multiple chapters. I had a lot of fun writing it, and I hope that you enjoyed it! Please please please press that little button at the bottom and review!
Thanks for reading!