DISCLAIMER: I do NOT own Tangled. MERRY CHRISTMAS ALL MY LOVELY FANFICTION BUDDIES. I've been waiting for this day for a long time! Here is zee last chapter, a bit of cuteness, sweetness, and the ending to a grand holiday.
That Christmas afternoon, after the going to church and the flurry of gifts and over-sized Christmas luncheon, Rapunzel made her way to the stables, holding Maximus's stocking in her hand to give to him.
The snow falling from the sky was light and airy, each little flake individual and unique, and the light from the sun bounced off of the white plains along the grass. The stables were just a few yards away from the snowy yard, so Rapunzel got there very quickly.
Maximus was in his stall at the end of the stable, munching away at the extra straw and carrots he had been given in the spirit of the holiday. He stopped chewing and looked up, however, when he heard the princess come into the stable.
"Merry Christmas, Maximus!" Rapunzel squealed as she raced over to his stall door, hanging her hands over it into his stable. From her hands dangled his stocking, which the horse immediately noticed and bent to sniff. His nostrils caught the smell of apples and fresh eggs coming from the stocking. He neighed excitedly as Rapunzel reached in and came out with a large red apple, beautiful and shiny. Maximus promptly sniffed and ate it.
Rapunzel giggled and reached in for another one. Just then Eugene came running up into the stall. She turned to the ex-thief for a moment, asking, "And where were you?"
Eugene shrugged, keeping his eyes on Maximus. "Just talking to your father about something." Rapunzel smiled and Eugene watched as one by one she fed him about five apples, and the ex-thief added a little warning, "Don't feed him too much or he'll get sick."
Rapunzel rolled her eyes playfully and held out another apple. "Says the man who gives him a bag full of apples."
Eugene rolled his eyes. Rapunzel decided he had a point and gently dumped the rest of the apples into a bucket in Maximus's stall for later. Reaching back into the bag, she drew out two hard-boiled eggs for him. She peeled the shells off of them and held them out. Maximus smiled and ate them both in less than a minute.
Rapunzel patted his mane and said, smiling, "Merry Christmas, buddy." Turning to Eugene, who was staring absentmindedly into space, she called, "Eugene?" When he didn't answer, she called a bit more sharply, "Eugene!"
He spun around and asked, "What?"
"Are, are you okay?" Rapunzel wondered, cocking her head and dubbing a quirky face.
"Yeah, yeah, I'm fine. I've got the book," he said, hoping to get off subject as he reached into his new satchel and drew out a Bible. They were heading to the orphanage that Eugene had grown up in and were going to read the Christmas story to all the little kids.
Off they went down the road, passing by many townspeople and wishing everyone Merry Christmas. With their shoes covered in snow, they finally made it to the orphanage.
Stepping inside, they shook the snow off their boots on the thin rug by the door and were both immediately surrounded by children. The matrons smiled as they found seats, the small children gathering around them on the floor. Rapunzel reached into his satchel and drew out the Bible. Flipping through it, she found the passage and handed it to Eugene.
"There you go," she whispered, leaning against his shoulder. Eugene smiled and started reading...
It was nearly two hours later when they left. The late afternoon's sun was starting to fall, covering their walking path with sweet, pink light. Rapunzel giggled excitedly, clutching his arm, as they walked. Whilst she was all excited, however, Eugene seemed nervous and jittery.
Rapunzel noticed him acting weird. Every time she stared at his face, he would look at her with a sort of nervous smile, making her giggle somewhat nervously and look away. And for some weird reason, she would blush whenever she could feel his gaze on her.
Rapunzel was a bit perturbed by his behavior. He wasn't normally like this. When they finally went through the village and into the courtyard, Rapunzel stopped him, making him look at her as she said quietly, "Eugene, are you okay? You aren't acting normal."
He shrugged as he ran a hand through his dark, brown hair. "Yeah, sure."
"Are you sure that you're not sick? Because I think that the turkey seemed a tad pinker than it should have been," she asked. She squealed and covered her mouth in horror as she hurriedly asked, "Do you have food poisoning?"
He smiled slightly. "No, I don't think it's food poisoning. I think it's something else."
Rapunzel stood in front of him and looked into his eyes as she asked worriedly, "What do you think it is?"
He whispered one word. "Love." And at that moment, bathed in the pink light of the winter setting sun, on the cold and wet snow, he went down on one knee.
Rapunzel's hands flew to her mouth as he cleared his throat and licked his lips, his eyes wandering around the courtyard for some words to say. He finally looked up at her, and couldn't help but stare for a moment.
"Rapunzel," he said finally, almost hoarsely, but yet strong and clear, "I've only known you for a few months, but I feel like I've known you my entire life, which sounds really, really cheesy, but," he sighed, "I feel now that I never really lived until I met you. You've shown me the world like I've never seen it before; you're bright, cheery, delightful really, and it's really quite hard for someone not to love you.
"Rapunzel," he said slowly, "I've never loved a person like this my whole life, and, and I want to never spend another day away from you.
"Rapunzel, will you marry me?"
Rapunzel knew as he went down on one knee what was coming. Happy tears clouded her vision as he went on with his little speech. Sobs grew in her chest and she could barely speak.
"Eugene, I," she was able to make out.
"Rapunzel," he smiled as he slowly rose to his full height, "will you marry me?"
Rapunzel giggled, for it seemed that that was the only thing she could do at the moment.
"Well, marry me?" he asked again, seeming to love asking her such a question.
"Eugene," she choked out.
"Darling, marry me," he smiled, nearly on the verge of laughing.
Rapunzel smirked at his laughing and with a laugh, threw her weight at him, tackling him to the ground.
She giggled as she raised herself to look him in his glowing eyes, "Of course I'll marry you!"
William was lighting his pipe with a match. Once it was lit, he waved it around in the air to extinguish it. Out of the corner of his eye, he saw Catherine nervously pacing in front of the parlor window in the family parlor. Her face was screwed into that of anxiousness and she was wringing the life out of her limp handkerchief.
"William, you believe he'll ask when he comes back?" Catherine asked for the hundredth time.
William took the pipe out of his mouth to say, "Yes, Katie dear. The boy said that he had the perfect setting and perfect time. I hope it works out for him." He chuckled as he took another puff. "He was as nervous as a cat."
Catherine looked from her husband to the parlor window again. Peeking through the curtains, her face beamed at the sight of the two together in the yard, the ex-thief down on one knee and her daughter smiling and from what seemed from here to be tear-filled eyes.
"Will, quick, he's doing it!" Catherine motioned with her hand for her husband to come see. William was by the window in two seconds. He brushed back the curtain along with her, and smiled.
The two parents watched as Rapunzel tackled him, her face lit up.
"I think that was a yes," Catherine squealed, wrapping an arm around her husband.
William beamed. "Katie dear, our little girl's getting married."
"And Corona's getting a new prince consort," Catherine grinned.
They hugged each other tighter as Catherine whispered in the King's ear, "Merry Christmas, my darling."
He smiled and whispered back, "And a Merry Christmas to you too, sweetheart."
The two watched excitedly as Eugene slipped a ring on Rapunzel's ring finger.
The soon-to-be-Rapunzel-Fitzherbert's ring finger.
AWWWW! There, he asked her, and asked her and asked her. The 'years' of asking I decided was how long it felt for him to ask her, if that makes any sense. I CAN'T BELIEVE THEY'RE GETTING MARRIED! It seems like it was only a few months ago that they were hitting each other with frying pans and scheming to get the other's crown.
I hope the ending wasn't too cheesy, because I think that the day after Christmas, well, sucks, but this way, they'll have something to look forward to! I can't wait to see their wedding!
So to all my faithful readers, all you lovely peoples, I wish you all the merriest of Christmases and the happiest of new years.