10 Years Later
A/N: It's been a while since I finished the story but I still wanted to post the epilogue as promised. It takes place 10 years after the end of More Than A Memory. Just a taste of what Beca and Chloe have been up to over the years since they finally got together. I just want to thank everyone who has followed this story one more time. Reading your feedback and just knowing that people were reading and enjoying the story was great motivation. I hope you'll enjoy this ending and as always your feedback is welcome.
"Oh my god, I can't believe how big he's gotten. It's only been a couple weeks since I last saw him and wow; look at those gorgeous, curly blonde locks."
Chloe reached an arm out, running her hand through the young boy's soft hair. "Gorgeous and his smile reminds me so much of Adley's when he was that age."
"They both definitely have Tom's smile," the woman in the doorway agreed, so does Asher. "You make some handsome sons Tom Riley," his wife said, pressing a kiss to his cheek.
"And beautiful daughters," Chloe added as she motioned behind her at their now 14 year old daughter Alyson.
Dressed in a yellow sun dress and playing with her younger siblings in the grass behind their house Tom smiled at his daughter. Chloe had decided to throw their eldest daughter Adrienne a party to celebrate her graduation from high school which meant all of their family and friends were coming together on this sunny afternoon. 3 years after his divorce from Chloe her ex-husband Tom had walked down the aisle for a second time. This meant that ten years later the family was very different, a lot bigger and a lot happier. It had been a long and sometimes bumpy road to get to this point but everyone was happy and ready to celebrate such a joyous occasion.
"The last time I was at Tom's wedding I had a decidedly better vantage point," Chloe whispered in Beca's ear, laughing.
The bride, a gorgeous, blonde woman just shy of 30 walked down the aisle in her stunning white dress. You couldn't help but watch as she smiled brighter than the sun. A smile that let Chloe and everyone else in the room know just how incredibly happy she was to be walking towards Tom. She had met him three years prior under much more unfortunate circumstances and it was a relief that they had made it to this day.
When Tom met Sienna he had been admitted to the hospital after an accident that could have been fatal. One slippery diving board and a severe head injury later and Chloe watched as her former husband began bleeding to death on the ground. Beca called emergency services as all the red head could do was cry; she was inconsolable. It was the worst day of his life, but it had led to one of the best days. As he recovered in the hospital he met the beautiful girl that stood before him on this day. She was there visiting a friend after a minor surgery. Having lost her fiancé and first love just a few years prior she wasn't looking for a relationship but sometimes love doesn't wait until you're ready. They fell head over heels in love, got engaged a year later and a year after that here they stood.
Chloe couldn't help the happy tears that streamed down her face as they said "I do." She would always love Tom as a friend, as the father of her children and as someone who she wanted great happiness for. Seeing him find love again made her heart swell. She genuinely wished them the best. Sienna was good for Tom, Chloe knew that and she couldn't help but believe that everything had happened for a reason. They were never meant to be, right here, and with the people they were with right now, that's what's was meant to be, and Chloe couldn't be happier.
"Are you crying?" Chloe teased the brunette next to her.
"No, I just have something in my eye," she defended sharply.
"What? I'm happy for him okay, he's a good guy."
"Beautiful daughters indeed, speaking of which, where is Adrienne?" Tom asked curiously. It was her party but he had yet to see the girl make an appearance.
"Not sure actually, might be with Beca, I haven't seen her around in a while either."
"I'm sure they'll be down soon," Sienna assured them, "probably just putting the finishing touches on her makeup. Isn't that her boyfriend Jason over there?"
Tom scowled slightly at the mention of the name. Jason was a nice boy from a nice family but he was Adrienne's first boyfriend and no one was good enough for his daughter.
Upstairs Adrienne sat on her bed, crushing the ruffles on the gorgeous dress her mother had bought her for the occasion. She could see out her window that her family and friends had all arrived to celebrate with her, but something stopped her from going down. She watched for a while as her siblings played. It looked like they were playing tag, Aaron's favourite game. The five year old laughed gleefully as he tapped his older brother Asher on the leg and yelled "you're it."
It used to be just the three of them, Adrienne, her brother Adley and their little sister Alyson; in the last ten years though their family had grown so much. When her father married Sienna they had two sons, 5 year old Aaron and 3 year old Adam. She was so used to having just one brother but she had come to really love those little guys. Tom and Sienna thought about having one more and trying for a girl, but Sienna said she was perfectly happy with the two daughters she already had.
When her mother and Beca got married two years after they began dating, they weren't sure about having more kids. Beca said she was happy to just raise the children she had already come to love. She never wanted them to feel left out or like she loved them any less and she wasn't sure what a new baby would do to the family. When it came down to it though both women decided they did want to have a baby together. Now they couldn't imagine life without their 7 year old son Asher and 5 year old daughter Amelia. They fit into the family just right and were more than adored by their older siblings.
Chloe, Beca, Tom and Sienna find themselves incredibly grateful every day that all 7 siblings get along well and love each other as much as they do. They had expected some reluctance on the part of the older children at first, but they overcame the challenges together, just like everything else life had thrown at them. Chloe and Tom's divorce had been hard on their kids, and their parent's remarriages had induced a lot of mixes feelings but in the end they were all a family. As strange as it seemed to everyone else, they wouldn't have things any other way. Now, Adrienne's days were never complete without a Skype call from Tom, Sienna, Aaron and Adam to say goodnight.
"Hey beautiful, shouldn't you be down enjoying your party?" Beca asked the 18 year old who she found sitting crossed legged on the twin bed that was still adorned with pink sheets in her bedroom.
It was crazy to her that she had an 18 year old daughter, but she couldn't ask for a better one. Adrienne had grown up to be very kind, smart, beautiful and just a great girl all around. Beca liked to think she had a least a little to do with that, but was adamant that Chloe and Tom had done all of the hard work.
"Yeah, I was just about to go down. I was just…" her voice trailed off and Beca could hear the sadness. It was rare that Adrienne got this upset so it was noticeable to Beca.
"What's wrong? You know you can tell me anything right?"
"I know," Adrienne sniffed, the tears were flowing now and Beca felt arms wrap around her. She pressed a kiss to the young girl's head and hugged her tight. "I love you." It was muffled and said through tears but Beca heard it.
"I love you too; now tell me what's wrong?"
"I'm worried about next year. I'm scared to go off to college and leave home. I feel safe here. I'm just going to miss everyone. I'll miss mom and dad and Adley, Alyson, Adam, Aaron, Asher and Amelia. I'll miss Sienna and Aubrey and Simon and Garrett, Gwen, Danielle and Brian and you, so much. You've all been here for me for so long and you love me and everything is good here, at home, with my family. I have amazing parents, you and Sienna included in that and when I go away to school, you won't be there with me every day. I'm afraid of being alone."
"Oh," Beca thought for a moment, pressing another kiss to Adrienne's forehead and wiping the tears from her eyes. "You are never going to be alone, I promise you that. Maybe we won't be living with you and we won't be there with you physically but we're always going to be with you. We'll be by your side and have your back no matter what. We love you Adrienne, don't forget that ever and you'll be okay. Besides, you're going to Barden, that isn't that far. We will visit you as much as you want. Plus, we're just a phone call away. I promise you right now you can call me any time you want. I don't care if it's 3 AM and you just need to talk to someone, you call me okay. Adrienne, I will drop everything, anytime to be there for you no matter what, remember that."
"Thank you. You know, you're kind of the best mom a girl could ask for."
"Well, you're kind of the best daughter I could ask for. Now, shall we go join your party? I think your boyfriend would like to see you in that dress. You look beautiful."
Beca took Adrienne's hand and helped her up off the bed. As they walked down the stairs Adrienne took one last deep breath. Things would be different next year, a lot different than she had ever known but that didn't mean they would be bad. She would try to remember to keep Beca's words in the back of her mind as she went off to college. Her family would always be there for her, no matter what.
"Hey gorgeous; thanks for joining the party. We've all been waiting for the guest of honour," Aubrey announced, giving the young girl a hug. "Congratulations sweetie, we're all really proud of you."
"Thanks Aubrey, Beca was just helping me with my makeup."
Both Chloe and Aubrey raised an eyebrow at the girl at this statement given their intimate knowledge of Beca's ability or lack thereof to put on makeup well. They let the comment slide though and just gave Beca a knowing glance.
"Is she okay?" Chloe whispered in her wife's ear.
"She's good, just some nerves. We talked, she'll be fine."
"You're amazing, you know that right?" Chloe kissed the other woman square on the lips.
"I just love her; it's as simple as that."
"I know you do."
"Hey Becs, are you crying?"
"Uh…yeah. Sorry," Beca wiped the tears from her eyes.
"No, nothing's wrong. These are happy tears."
"What are we happy about then?" Chloe asked.
"Do you know what your daughter just asked me?"
"If it would be okay if she called me mom. We were just eating breakfast and Adrienne just asked me out of the blue and I kind of couldn't help but cry. She probably thinks I'm lame now, but I don't even care. I love her so much, all of them."
"That's great babe. I knew she'd get there in time. All 3 of them love you so much you know. It was hard for them to adjust at first but I know they think their lives are better with you in it. You're a great mom to them, even if you never in a million years thought you'd be a good mom. And you're going to be a great mom to our little one when he or she gets here too you know."
"How did I get so lucky to end up with you and 3 amazing kids?"
"You took a chance on making our relationship more than a distant memory Beca. You had faith in me and us and that's not luck. That's love."
"Well whatever it is, it's an amazing feeling and I couldn't be happier."
"Mama," the little brunette squealed as she ran across the backyard towards Beca.
"Amelia," Beca said excitedly as her daughter ran into her arms. "How are you enjoying the party sweetheart?"
"It's lots of fun. I was just building a sandcastle in the sandbox with Aaron and Brian but I wanted to see you."
Beca kissed the top of the small girl's head gently. "Well I wanted to see you too, so thank you for coming over to see me. Do you want a piggy back ride back to the sandbox?"
Amelia squealed with glee as Beca lifted her onto her back and made her way over to the sandbox.
"She's such a goofball," Aubrey said, laughing as Beca joined Amelia in building a sandcastle.
"Yes, but she's my goofball."
"Yes, yes she is Chloe. I bet 20 years ago you never thought you'd be happily married to Beca Mitchell with 5 children and a poodle whom I have personally heard her call pumpkin and sweetie."
"Can't say that I did, but I think maybe all the best things in life are unexpected, right?"
"Like meeting a cute British guy on vacation and marrying him two months later, or having twins."
"Exactly, just like that."
"Running away, just like you always do Beca; you're so afraid to talk about anything real."
"Chloe don't. I'm with Jesse."
"But that doesn't stop you from wanting me."
"I love Jesse and I thought you loved Tom."
"I do, but that doesn't stop me from wanting you."
"Maybe it should."
Beca had turned back to face the red head when she had cursed her for running away again, but she couldn't stand there any longer. Chloe wasn't right, she couldn't be right. Maybe sometimes she wanted things to be different, but they weren't different. Beca was with Jesse, he was good to her, he loved her and he was her boyfriend. She had no excuse to be looking elsewhere for love. She had someone in her life, she didn't need Chloe. But Chloe was right, that didn't stop her from wanting her.
Beca slammed the door to Chloe's apartment as she ran out. It was the last time she saw the red head and it broke her heart that the last memory she had of her was so devastating.
"What are we talking about?" Beca asked as she made her way back over to where the adults were standing.
"Oh just about how I have such a wonderful wife," Chloe revealed, kissing the brunette on the cheek.
"That's funny; I have a wonderful wife too. Maybe we should introduce them sometime," Beca teased.
"Aubrey's right, you're such a goofball."
"But you love me."
"Hate to interrupt you two lovebirds but can we talk about what we're going to do about that boy?"
"What boy, you mean Jason?"
Beca could see the direction Tom's eyes were focused on. He was looking right at Adrienne who was sitting with a group of friends. Jason, a tall brunette boy with striking green eyes had his arm around her. Beca smiled as the boy whispered in Adrienne's ear and she kissed him on the cheek.
"Yes. Look at him over there, so smug and he's got his arm around her and he's laughing."
"Tom, seriously?" his wife Sienna looked at him incredulously.
"Yes seriously, he's no good."
"He's so sweet Tom."
"And he loves her," Beca added.
"He's good for her," Chloe chimed, "I like him."
"He's a bad apple," Tom insisted.
"He's not and you need to stop. You know I'd be the first one to get all up in that skinny boy's grill if he hurt her."
Tom sighed but he knew Beca was telling the truth.
"Yeah well, he just better watch it."
Chloe rolled her eyes, "yes Tom; be sure to keep your eyes peeled for signs of evil teenage boy in Jason. We'll back you up."
Sienna and Beca chuckled.
"You're lucky Tom, she chose a banjo player instead of the heartbreaking quarterback or two-timing lead guitarist or something," Sienna teased.
"Whatever, I'm getting a cupcake."
Chloe laughed as Tom walked away from the women. "He always did love chocolate cake."
Beca grabbed Chloe's hand and they took a seat in a pair of nearby lawn chairs. The sun shone down on them as they looked around at their party guests. The yard was filled with friends of Adrienne's as well as the rest of their children. It was filled with family members and friends of Beca and Chloe's as well as Tom's. Many people had turned up to congratulate Adrienne on her graduation and wish her well in the new school year as she went off to college. It was wonderful to see just how loved their daughter was.
"She'll be okay next year right?" Chloe asked.
"She will be fine. She's a good girl, and smart and Barden is really not that far away."
"You're probably right."
"I'm definitely right. She's going to have a great time and make some awesome lifelong friends."
"Hopefully she won't wait ten years to get back in touch with them though."
"Yes well, hopefully she'll be a lot less stubborn than her mother."
"Hopefully," Chloe laughed.
10 years apart had been made up for with 10 wonderful years together. 10 years of new memories to make up for 10 years of thinking about what might have been. 10 years together, and Beca was only looking forward to more. More years, more memories, more happiness and more love; Beca couldn't imagine anything better.