Here's the epilogue, the last chapter in this story. I originally wanted it to be a DUO chapter, but decided that this story's finish had to be told by Freddie. It's been fun, guys, and I hope you enjoy the ending to "Those Damn Blue Eyes".
Happily Ever After (Epilogue)
Four and a half years ago, I made a bet with Sam, and as a consequence had to write a year's worth of journal entries. A year later, I went away to college. This is entry number is my last entry.
The journal I used for the last 364 entries is gone now, burned in a cooking fire caused by Spencer (shocker). And, even though I kept the journal for far longer than a year, I feel like I must write this last entry. I plan to keep it, and with that in mind, I think I'll recap on the last few years.
I have been at M.I.T. for three and a half years now. My roommate, Ashton, started a year before me, but had to take an extra semester of classes. I, however, planned ahead, so I graduate a semester early. It works out pretty cool, since that means we get to graduate together.
Sam and I have been together for more than four years. She, Ashton, and I are all living together, all working at a place called A.J.'s Diner where Ashton met his girlfriend, Bailey.
It's been amazing. M.I.T. was a crazy experience, and with school, homework, my job, and Sam, I never got any free time, but it was all worth it because I got to see her every day.
Today was graduation. Everyone came. My mom, Spencer, Carly, Sam, Ashton, and Bailey were there, and some old friends also made it, like Gibby and Sam's sister Melanie and some of my extended family. It was a once-in-a-lifetime event, and seeing everyone together was amazing. Sure, our three-bedroom apartment got pretty cramped, especially since Bailey moved into Sam's old room a few months ago, but it was worth it.
Graduation itself was nothing too exciting. I walked up and took my diploma, and that was pretty much it. Afterward, everyone got together to celebrate with an insanely huge potluck dinner. The whole time, I couldn't stop smiling.
A lot of my relatives and most of my friends gave me (and sometimes Ashton) graduation presents. Most gave money, and some gave things like books or even a toaster. My mom gave me a new car- a red Prius- and it's amazing. Ashton and I just gave each other movies, mostly as a joke since we share pretty much everything we own anyways. Sam's gift was my favorite though.
After dinner was over, and all the gifts were opened, the celebration still continued (rather loudly, I might add). Sam pulled me aside and asked, grinning, "Wanna get out of here?"
I couldn't help but laugh, knowing that almost all these people were here for me, but guessing they wouldn't notice my absence for a while.
"Absolutely!" I told her.
We snuck out the window in our bedroom (first floor apartment) and raced off toward our favorite hangout- the black and white movie theater. Sam works there during the day, and at A.J.'s during the night, so she has a set of keys. Since it's right across the street, we often go there just to hang out in the lobby, which has really old, overstuffed couches and working record players.
I flopped down on the couch and waited while Sam picked a record to play. She put on Dean Martin, a favorite of ours since we first began to fall for each other over his song "Sway". In fact, we adopted a tabby cat off the street a year ago and named it Dino Crocetti, which is Dean Martin's real name.
Sam came and sat next to me and, for a moment, we just closed our eyes and listened to the music.
"Freddie?" Sam asked me quietly.
"Yes?" I replied, not even opening my eyes.
"I'm sorry I didn't give you a graduation gift. It's just… there's something I wanted to ask you first."
I opened my eyes and looked over at her. "Sam, just you being here is a gift. I don't need anything more."
Sam's eyes were all glassy, but they were sparkling. She leaned over and kissed me gently, before pulling away and asking, "What are you planning to do now?"
I kind of half-shrugged and told her, "I'm not totally sure. I've grown rather fond of Massachusetts, so I was thinking about looking for a job over here."
"And what about me?"
"Well I'd hoped you and Dino would come with me."
Sam laughed and a smile snuck onto her face, "Good."
I slung my arm over her shoulder and pulled her close. We sat there like that for a while, just enjoying each other's company, before the record skipped and Sam moved away.
"I… I love you, Freddie," she said nervously, "and I…" she bit her lip and fished something out of her jeans pocket. She took my hand, placing a thick, silver ring in it. While I stared at it blankly, she went on. "I know you've still got a lot of things to sort out but… I don't want to wait any more. I never thought… after what happened with my dad, I never saw myself tied down to just one person. But, now, I can't imagine being with anyone else. And who cares if this isn't how people usually do it; we've never done things normally anyway. Anyways… Freddie… will you… will you marry me?"
I was in so much shock that I couldn't think of anything to say. I just kept staring at the ring, which I noticed had the words "Sway With Me" engraved on the inside, though the outside was plain.
Suddenly, I had a thought, and I stood abruptly.
"One second," I yelled at Sam, dashing out the door. "I'll be right back!"
I ran across the street and back through the window into our room. Inside, I grabbed a ring that I'd stashed in the closet years ago. I bought it at a thrift shop during my first semester at M.I.T., simply because the sapphires in it reminded me of Sam. Actually, it's part of a set, and I gave the other two pieces to Sam for Christmas that year. I'd kept the ring hidden ever since, waiting for the right time. Today was it.
I raced like mad back to Sam and collapsed on the couch next to her, momentarily out of breath.
She was looking at me with an expression that conveyed immense worry, and I can't imagine what she must have been thinking.
I sat up and took Sam's hand, placing the silver and sapphire ring in it. I watched her face as she puzzled out what was going on. First, she simply stared at the ring, then she gasped, and a hand flew to her throat, where the matching necklace hung. A second later, she tentatively touched an earring. Then she looked up at me questioningly.
"I've had that ring for three years, Sam. When I bought it, I wasn't sure when I was going to give it to you, but it's time. I would love to see it on you."
Still a bit bewildered, Sam slipped the ring onto her finger. I held up my left hand, on which I'd placed the ring she'd given me. Then I leaned in, pressing my lips to hers gently.
"And, by the way, that means yes", I added.
The look on her face was breathtaking, and it's not something I will soon forget. But, for some time when I'm old and can no longer remember, I have written this down. Though my other entries have been lost, I'm going to keep this one forever.
Sam's eyes turned glassy, shining beautifully. She moved toward me, wrapping me in a hug. Tears leaked from her eyes and, I admit, some escaped my eyes as well.
When we finally pulled apart, Sam's face was bright, a grin so big it looked like her face might split.
"Oh my God. We're engaged," she managed.
"Holy shit," I agreed. "But it feels right, doesn't it?"
"Yeah," Sam said, the smile still lighting up her features.
"So… what kind of wedding do you want?" I asked. Admittedly, it was a question normally asked later on, after the proposal, but Sam and I's relationship has never been that.
"I don't know. I don't want it to be a big deal. Like, I don't even care about wearing a wedding dress or being somewhere fancy. We could do it at the courthouse for all I care."
A funny look crossed her face.
"Freddie," she said slowly, "Everyone we know is here. EVERYONE. What if…" she laughed.
"What?" I asked.
"It's nothing," she said, but her eyes glinted mischievously.
"Tell me," I demanded, and I almost laughed, thinking about how similar this sounded to the conversation we had before our first kiss.
Sam seemed to have the same thought, and responded with, "Naw, it's dumb."
"Say it!" I said, trying not to burst out laughing. By this point, I'd figured out what Sam had thought of originally that made her laugh.
"I was just gonna say that…" she started, then trailed off, looking at me expectantly.
I stifled another laugh at how weird this was and finished, "we could get married now?"
After that, both of us lost it, and we laughed for a long while. But then I told Sam, "We could, you know. We could get married tonight. Do you really want to?"
She bit her lip, "Only if you do."
I grinned and said, "Let's invite everyone."
With that, we returned to our apartment, where people had begun to notice that I wasn't there. We announced our engagement, and everyone seemed happy, even my mom. Then, we told them that we planned to marry tonight and chaos ensued.
Over all the noise, I yelled, "Whoever wants to come, meet us at the courthouse in half an hour!"
Sam and I rushed into our room. I threw on black slacks and my favorite blue polo, while Sam rifled through the closet. I stepped out momentarily to call the courthouse and returned to find Sam in a short maroon dress that I recognized.
"It's the same one I wore for our one-week anniversary," she said, answering my silent question, "The day Carly found out about our 'secret relationship'."
I laughed and said, "Perfect!"
We walked to the courthouse together, hearts racing. As we stood in front of the doors, I asked, "Are you sure about this?"
"Absolutely," Sam said. "You?"
"I've never been more sure of anything in my life."
And so we got married. Right there, in a courthouse in Cambridge, Massachusetts, with all our friends and family, we got married. It wasn't fancy, but somehow that was perfect. And when the bored-looking official said "You may kiss the bride", it felt like Sam and I were alone together. Just us. And that's all I ever wanted.
Tonight, I looked into those damn blue eyes of Sam's, those beautiful blue eyes that always tell me how she feels, and I saw one thing. Love.
And some way, somehow I just know that this is the real thing.
This is forever.
Thanks for reading!