Ok, so I MASSIVELY cheated with this. What happened was that on Friday my DVD of the Christmas Special arrived (thank you hmv pre-order), but I was very good and wrapped it up and put it under the tree for today (present to myself). I wasn't going to watch it but then I've been ill all weekend, and spent a lot of today in bed…so I watched it earlier…like 10am-ish this morning. And then I started writing this just to carry it on because I honestly don't know if I can wait until series 3. So it was kind of pretty much essentially finished before it even aired on ITV! I also know that this is kind of maybe a wee bit similar to my other story 'Last dance, last chance' but never mind. No infringements etc. intended. Enjoy!

At last, my love has come along.

"I think we should go inside," she murmured into his ear.

"Do we have to?" he whispered back, pulling her closer to him, enjoying the feel of the silk of her dress under his hands.

"Yes we do. It's snowing and I don't have a coat," she giggled as he kissed her neck and wrapped his arms tighter around her waist. She sighed and leaned into him, letting her fingers delve into his hair and stroke the nape of his neck. He pulled his face back up to hers and kissed her passionately. She shivered and playfully pushed him away, walking backwards into the house, unable to stop the huge smile that was plastered across her face. He smiled and followed, pulling her into his arms as he reached her. They kissed again.

"Thank you," he looked into her eyes before leaning to kiss her again. "I love you." She felt like she was actually melting.

"I love you too," they smiled and he led her to the settee, pulling her down next to him, and wrapping his arm around her shoulders. She leaned her head against his and curled into his embrace, hands resting against his chest, both of them unable to stop smiling. They were just so happy.

"You do know that my trousers are now rather damp?" he grinned at her, and was rewarded with a shy smile.

"You had to do it properly, or I wouldn't have said yes," she sat up properly and looked into his eyes, bringing her hands up to caress his face.

"I think you would have done, eventually," his blue eyes sparkled. "I'd have talked you round," he leaned in for another kiss, hands closing gently around her wrists.

"Maybe," she said against his lips before pulling away with a smile. "This is it now though Matthew. No changing our minds this time." He looked at her earnestly.

"Mary, I am not going to do that. I don't even want to let you out of my sight now." He kissed her cheek, her forehead, any part of her face he could make contact with until he found her lips again.

"I think that might prove difficult for some things," she gasped as his mouth met a rather sensitive spot just by her ear lobe.

"Such as?" his voice hummed against her skin, causing heat to travel through her and her eyes to flutter shut.

"Well we live in different houses for a start, so there are several hours we have to spend apart," she gasped again as his lips reached her collarbone.

"Do we though? I could just stay here…"

"And what exactly would be your intention, if you stayed?" He didn't reply, instead claiming her mouth again as his answer, and gently easing her backwards to a more reclined position, the weight of him pressing against her comfortably, his lips and hands travelling over her. "I see. Don't you think you might be getting ahead of yourself?" He groaned against her neck as she pushed him back and they sat up again. He took her hands, now needing to be touching her all the time.

"Not in the slightest. When can we get married?"

"As soon as possible," she leaned in to kiss him again, unable to stop herself. He pulled her to him with more urgency than he had before. The atmosphere shifted, and so did she, ending up on his lap, her dress hitched up around her thighs as she straddled him. She wrapped her arms around his neck, locking them together, as their mouths met again and again in a clash of teeth and tongues and heat and love and passion, the only sounds filling the air were the soft moans and sighs and they closed all the space between them and yet were still not close enough. His hands drifted from her waist to her shoulders, down her back, down to her bottom. They both gasped, but it was soon lost in another blazing kiss. He pulled her closer again, shifting his hips underneath her, causing them both to moan at the movement. She pulled her lips away from his and moved them to his ear.

"You can stay," she whispered, so quietly that it was barely audible, smiling and blushing as she looked back into his beautiful, love-filled eyes. She wanted to do more of this with her fiancé…the thought made her heart pound erratically and another blush creep up her porcelain skin.

"Are you sure? I wasn't being serious my darling." His heart was racing at the thought of what could happen if he did stay.

"Yes. I want you to." Every single thing she was feeling was written all over her face. She stood up, smoothed down her dress and held out her hand to him.

"In that case, you had best lead the way," he stood, taking her hand and another kiss, before she gently tugged him out of the room and towards the stairs.

At Last – Etta James

At last, my love has come along
My lonely days are over
And life is like a song

Best Downton episode. EVER.