It was a cold and dismal evening when Harry finally got off the phone with the Home Secretary. After being told that all his years of working for his country could be taken away from him he wasn't sure what to do. He thought about what the Home Secretary had said. "Try and sort out life after the service, Harry" was what he had been told. Typical he thought, the only thing I want to do in my life is to be with Ruth, and it's not like that is happening any time soon. After a few more moments of dismal thoughts, he remembered that he did have someone waiting for him at home, so home he went, worrying about what lay ahead.

He opened his front door and was greeted by an extremley excited terrier,
"Hey there girl," He said to Scarlett as she continued to jump up at him "bet you've had a better day then me"
Harry poured himself a drink and was just about to sit down for the evening when Scarlett decided she wasn't having that, and started pawing at the front door. He sighed and then picked up her lead and took her out.
They had been walking for sometime when his phone rang. He assumed it was the Home Secretary with even more bad news that would make his life seem even more miserable, if that was even possible. It was for that reason, and others which needn't be expressed, that he was flooded with pure joy and love when his caller id read 'Ruth Evershed'

"Hi" he remarked, trying to sound as casual as was possible-considering what they had been through recently
"Hey" she replied, her voice making him forget even his own name for a while "What's wrong with you?"
"What do you mean" He asked
"Oh, honestly Harry! I know you better than anyone, you're using that I'll-make-it-sound-like-I'm-OK-and-nobody-will-notice kind of voice" she answered, and he marvelled at how she was able to know him inside out "so, tell me"
"Trust me Ruth, it's a long story." He told her "I'm certain you don't want to hear it over the phone" he added, thinking that he might be able to persuade her to meet with him outside of work
"Alright then" She replied and he could almost see the smirk on her face
"What's so funny?" he queried. She gave a small chuckle and then whispered
"Turn around and you'll see"

Harry did just that and was faced with Ruth standing there infront of him. He put his phone back in his pocket and stood still whilst she walked over to him, a small smile on her face. When she reached him, he was about to speak when she bent over and started to tickle his dog behind the ear
"Hey there beautiful girl" She said softly to the terrier at her feet "You missed me then darling?"
"Of course she did" Harry told her
"ALmost as much as you?" She asked with a small grin on her face
"Oh, I seriously doubt that" he replied in a whisper. Ruth got to her feet and faced him, standing closer than they had been in far too long.
"Thats good then" she responded in an equal whisper. They stood like that for a short while, staring into each other's eyes before Ruth spoke
"We need to talk"
"About what?" he asked, hoping that it wouldn't make his day any worse,
"About what I said at Ros' funeral" she told him, with an anxious look on her face
"oh. That" with thoughts of loneliness filling his head,
"Yeah" she said. Ruth turned to her right and leant against the railings there and looked out at the park near them, covered with shadows and couples walking together. She sighed, thinking that they could be doing that, and Harry took her sigh to mean that yet another dismissal was on the way. He was about to tell her that they should forget it and move on when she turned back to him, a look of renewed braveness on her face.
"I was," she started and then paused, looking down at her feet. In a moment of inspiration he raised his hand to her face and stroked her cheek gently- saying more than he could have hoped to say out loud
"I was afraid" she finished, causing confusion to cover Harry's face "you see," she carried on "I just, wasn't expecting it, you know?"
"Go on," he encouraged
"The thing is, I'd been dreaming about that happening since I first met you" she went on, looking into his face, hoping that what she was saying made sense "and then when I was in Cyprus, that dream was all I had for a while. In fact it was what I had to keep me going. The thought that it might happen one day was, well crazy really, but it helped. I guess that's why I never properly married George." she went silent for a moment, coming to terms with this new thought, "So anyway" she carried on "that is the real reason I said no. I had spent almost nine years of my life waiting and then it happened in the strangest circumstances, and I paniked to be honest. Then after, I came up with every possible reason I had for refusing you. It made it seem better that way, better than admitting I was wrong. Not that thats bad, I just didn't know, I mean I still don't know if you still want that, and I guess its fine if..."
"Ruth" he said, stopping her ramblings "calm down"
"Sorry" she said, shyly
"Now then," he continued in a much lower voice "are you saying that you've changed your mind?" she looked into his face, and saw his eyes had changed from that deep amber she knew so well, to pure black. Black with such desire that it almost frightened her.
"Yes" she whispered
"Good" he purred and pulled her closer to him and he kissed her pasionatley with all the love he had been saving for those stupidly long nine years. When he pulled back for breath, he found that her eyes had reached that same intense black as his must be, and so he lent forwar to kiss her again, but she stopped him and placed her hand on his chest
"Ask me properly" she whispered "please?"
"Ruth Evershed, you are the most amazing, talented, beautiful and completley perfect woman I have ever met. I am so in love with you that it hurts, and I would be honoured if you would marry me and become my wife" he told her, his eyes filled with love
"Harry" she said in a chocked voice "I most certainly will" he grinned and kissed her once more, for much longer, one hand on the small of her back and the other in the roots of her hair (the poor Terrier had given up on walking and was curled up in a ball, close to her master's feet) Ruth pulled back and held his gaze as she whispered those three words he had waited nine years to hear "I love you" she told him.

Some time later, after much talk and kisses, she asked "Harry?"
"mmm" came the reply
"What next?"
"Well, my house is closer" He whispered hoarsely. She looked up at him and grinned
"True" she stated "very, very true"

And with that they walked off, holding hands, not knowing what the next days would bring them, but knowing that one thing was certain- never again would they be parted.