AN: Sorry for the long wait, but here is a very long final chapter for this story! I wasn't sure how to end it, what to write and what not to write... I've been debating having Morrible escape from prison and crash the wedding or something, but I decided against it - I've had her escape from prison so many times in my other stories, I figured she should just stay put for once :P. So... this is the final chapter.
PocketSevens: That little speech actually almost had me in tears. Almost. Would you mind if I saved it for some Fiyeraba wedding that may or may not be happening in one of my other stories somewhere in the future and used it for that? :)
I hope you're happy with this ending! (I hope you're happy, I hope you're happy now... Sorry. Had to do that.)
Chapter 15. Married
Elphaba had been right – Nessa and Galinda did have a fit when they were informed that the wedding would be that afternoon… although it was for different reasons.
"Fabala," Nessa pleaded. "The doctor said bed rest. I think eloping after having been out of the hospital for just a few days would count as 'overdoing yourself'. Shouldn't you wait?"
Elphaba had managed to convince her that she would be fine and she promised her sister to let them know if she wasn't feeling well.
"It's not a big wedding, Nessie," she said. "There won't be anyone present except for the two of us, you, Galinda and the celebrant. No stress involved. I'll be fine."
Galinda, however, was more difficult to calm down.
"Oh my Oz!" she screeched as she stood there in Fiyero's dorm room, gaping at the couple. "What is Nessa going to wear? What am I going to wear?" She looked at Elphaba and her eyes widened. "Elphie, you're going to be a bride! What are you going to wear?! We don't have time to shop for you, and you don't have a single dress that's even remotely fashionable, and… and… oh my Oz, Elphie, why are you doing this to me?" she wailed.
Elphaba just raised an eyebrow.
"Nessa." Galinda perked up. "You can borrow a dress from Nessa! I'll go and ask her right away, we'll pick out a dress for you and shoes that match it, and a fitting hairstyle, of course, and make-up…" She left the room, muttering to herself.
Elphaba leant back against Fiyero tiredly. "Should I be worried?"
"If she gets too enthusiastic, you can always say you're too tired and you need to sleep a bit more before the wedding?" Fiyero suggested slyly.
Elphaba grinned and kissed his cheek. "Sometimes you're a genius."
The blonde appeared again a few hours later. Fiyero opened the door for her.
"I found the perfect dress for Elphie!" Galinda sang, only to quickly fall silent when Fiyero brought his finger to his lips and pointed at something behind him. The blonde smiled when she saw Elphaba curled up on Fiyero's bed, fast asleep.
"Are you sure she's not dead?" she whispered with a giggle as she entered the room.
Fiyero just scowled at her.
Galinda carefully spread the dress she was carrying across a chair and placed the matching shoes underneath it. "She's going to look so beautiful!" she whisper-squealed, making Fiyero roll his eyes.
The blonde now turned to face him. "Okay, Fifi," she said sternly. "The moment she wakes up, I want you to come and get me so that I can help her get ready. If she doesn't wake up in time, you just going to have to wake her up yourself –"
"Glin," Fiyero interrupted her sternly. "The doctor said that sleep is the most important thing for her right now. I'm not going to wake her up just so you can give her a makeover. She doesn't need that, anyway."
"Aww," Galinda said, clasping her hands together. "That is so sweet. But still, Fifi, she –"
"Fiyero, please –"
"No. Glin," he said, "I promise you that if she wakes up in time, I'll come to get you. But I refuse to wake her up for it. If we don't have time for a makeover, then so be it. To me, she's the most beautiful girl in the world, no matter how her hair or make-up looks or what she's wearing."
Galinda, forgetting herself, actually squealed; and Elphaba stirred on the bed, scrunching up her nose as she pulled a pillow over her head.
"That squeal can only mean one thing," she muttered, her voice muffled by the pillow. "Galinda is here."
"You did that on purpose," Fiyero accused the blonde. "You just can't stand the fact that I would let Elphaba get married without any make-up on!"
"I didn't!" Galinda protested. "I mean, yes, I want her to be pretty and Galindafied when she gets married, but I didn't wake her up on purpose!"
Fiyero just shot her a dark look even as he walked over to the bed and sat down on the edge of it, placing his hand on Elphaba's waist. "Morning, sweetheart," he said gently. "How are you feeling?"
"I would have been better if Galinda's squeals hadn't given me a headache," came the muffled reply.
That only earned the blonde yet another deadly look from the Vinkun prince and she slowly shuffled towards the door. "Maybe I should go…"
Elphaba pushed the pillow off her face. "It's fine, Glin. You can stay." She yawned. "It's not like I can fall back asleep, anyway."
Fiyero gently rubbed her back, waiting until she was a little more awake. She curled up around him, her eyes drifting shut again despite her earlier words; but again, Galinda ruined that for her.
"Elphie, no!" the blonde squeaked loudly. "You can't fall back asleep! You have to get ready for your wedding!"
Upon hearing her friend's loud squeals, Elphaba was immediately awake again; and Fiyero glared daggers at the bouncy blonde.
"I'm going to kill you," he declared.
Galinda blinked at him innocently. "Why?"
In the meantime, Elphaba had sat up and was now leaning against Fiyero, rubbing the sleep from her eyes. When she opened them again and saw the dress Galinda had laid out for her, however, her eyes immediately widened.
"No," she declared. "Galinda, I'm not wearing that."
"Oh, yes you are," the blonde said, narrowing her eyes.
"Glin," Elphaba stressed. "It's white."
"No, it's not!" Galinda held up the dress. "It's silver," she explained smugly. "It just looks white in a certain light…"
Elphaba shot her a glare.
"Aw, come on, Elphie!" Galinda whined. "It's so pretty! Nessa and I spent hours going through her closet, and we found this – it's a dress she wore to some official party once, when your father took her, and… at least try it on before you say no!"
Elphaba caved and slid off the bed, taking the dress and the shoes and disappearing into the bathroom with them. She quickly changed out of her clothes and into the dress, splashed some water in her face and brushed her hair to make her seem a bit more awake, and put on the shoes. Then she left the bathroom without so much as glancing at her mirror image.
"Alright," she said with a sigh as she stepped back into the room. "Go ahead, laugh at me."
Galinda clasped both hands over her mouth and there were actual tears in her eyes. "Oh, Elphie…" she said softly.
Fiyero didn't seem capable of speaking at all. If his eyes widened any further, they would fall out of their sockets.
"Elphie," Galinda declared dramatically, "if you don't wear that dress, I'm going to knock you unconscious and kidnap you to the chapel myself, because you have to get married in this. I won't take no for an answer."
"Have you even seen yourself?" Galinda grabbed her friend and dragged her over to the mirror. Elphaba stared at her reflection.
The dress was, indeed, a silvery white colour. It was form-fitting, gently flowing down from her hips all the way to her feet; and it had spaghetti straps that criss-crossed over her upper back. The straps and bodice were adorned with some beading.
The shoes, as Elphaba had noticed before, were Nessa's precious jewelled ones, which went with the dress almost perfectly.
Galinda was beaming at her. "Just look at yourself!" she squealed. Before Elphaba had a chance to protest, Galinda had pushed her down onto Fiyero's bed and pulled a small make-up set from her purse. "Now, just let me do your make-up..."
They gathered at the chapel in town a few hours later. Fiyero had dug out a suit that his parents had made him bring to Shiz; Nessa was dressed in rose and Galinda wore an ice blue dress. Elphaba herself was still wearing the silver dress and her sister's jewelled shoes. Galinda had run up and down to her own dorm room to fetch her curling iron, with which she had curled Elphaba's hair. She had then half-pinned it up in a bun, allowing the curls to fall down Elphaba's back. Nessa was constantly beaming at her sister and Galinda couldn't wipe her wide smile off her face.
Elphaba, for her part, was nervous; but her happiness outweighed her nerves. She was marrying Fiyero. It seemed completely crazy and at the same time it just felt completely right.
Galinda handed her friend the bouquet she had bought for her and hugged the green girl. "I love you, Elphie."
Elphaba hugged her back. "Love you, too, Glin."
"I still can't believe you're getting married," Nessa said in wonder, and Elphaba laughed.
"Believe me," she said. "Neither can I."
The ceremony itself almost passed in a blur for Elphaba. It was short, simple and sweet; and apparently Galinda thought so, too, because she was crying before the celebrant had even started speaking. Nessa just silently handed the blonde a handkerchief.
"May I have the rings?" the celebrant spoke.
Elphaba panicked for a moment, thinking they had forgotten about the rings; but then Galinda handed the celebrant a small cushion with two rings sitting on it.
Fiyero, seeing his fiancée's confused expression, winked at her. "I bought them this morning," he whispered. "After your hospital appointment, remember? You stayed in the carriage to sleep, and I went to book a marriage officiant? That's also when I bought the rings."
Elphaba chuckled softly. "So you're really not stupid," she teased him.
He pretended to be offended. "I thought it was 'not really stupid'."
She grinned at him, which Fiyero returned with a smile as he took one of the rings and spoke his vows after the celebrant.
"I, Fiyero, take you, Elphaba, to be my beloved wife, to have and to hold you, to honour you, to treasure you, to be at your side in sorrow and in joy, in the good times and in the bad, and to love and cherish you always. I promise you this from my heart, for all the days of my life."
As he spoke, his eyes never once left hers, not even when he carefully slid the ring around her finger; and she blushed slightly as she repeated her own vows.
"I, Elphaba, take you, Fiyero, to be my beloved husband, to have and to hold you, to honour you, to treasure you, to be at your side in sorrow and in joy, in the good times and in the bad, and to love and cherish you always. I promise you this from my heart, for all the days of my life."
She slipped the ring around Fiyero's left ring finger, and he beamed at her. Behind them, Galinda was sobbing into the handkerchief and even though Nessa seemed to be a bit exasperated at that, she also looked suspiciously misty-eyed herself.
"I now pronounce you husband and wife," the celebrant declared. "You may kiss the bride."
Fiyero slipped his arms around his wife's waist and drew her closer, smiling down at her before leaning in and capturing her lips with his. Galinda's sobs became even louder and Nessa was sniffling now as well.
When they finally broke apart, Fiyero rested his forehead against Elphaba's, looking deep into her chocolate brown eyes.
"I love you," he murmured.
Her smile widened and she leant up to kiss him again. "I love you, too, Yero my hero."
They left the chapel shortly thereafter. Galinda was still dabbing at her eyes with the handkerchief even as Nessa wheeled herself forward to hug her sister and her new brother-in-law.
"Congratulotions, both of you," she said with a smile. "I'm really happy for you, Fabala."
Elphaba hugged her sister again. "Thanks, Nessie."
Galinda then threw herself at her best friend, sobbing once again. "That was so beautiful!"
Elphaba, Nessa and Fiyero just exchanged an amused and exasperated look over the blonde's head.
"Come on," Fiyero said, sliding his arm around Elphaba's waist and pulling her closer. "Let's get you back to Shiz."
Elphaba shook her head. "I don't want to go back yet," she said. "I'm not tired," she added when she saw Fiyero's face. "Really, I'm feeling fine. Can't we go out for dinner or something and go back after that?"
Galinda's eyes lit up. "Ooh, that's a great idea!" she said.
Fiyero reluctantly agreed and they made their way over to a nice restaurant nearby.
As they waited for their food to arrive, Elphaba started biting her lip nervously. "Maybe this hasn't been such a good idea after all."
Fiyero, alarmed, turned to face her. "What?" He took her hand and looked at her worriedly. "Why?"
She sighed. "You're the heir to the Vinkun throne," she reminded him. "Do you think your parents would approve of… of this? They don't even know me."
Fiyero shrugged. "They've heard enough about you through my letters," he said. "And to be completely honest, I don't care what they think. We're married now and it's not like they can do anything about it."
Elphaba didn't feel reassured, but Nessa said gently, "Fabala."
The green girl looked up.
"Do you want me to talk to Father for you?" the younger girl asked softly. "See if I can placate him?"
Elphaba shrugged. "Honestly? I doubt it would be of any help," she said. "He'll be furious."
"But you won't have to go back to him." Nessa smiled and squeezed her sister's arm. "You'll be fine, Fabala. Just enjoy today – you're married! And you're a princess!"
Galinda squealed. "Ooh, you are!"
Elphaba chuckled. "To be completely honest, I'm still getting used to the 'wife' part. I'll just focus on the 'princess' part later, okay?"
"You're my princess," Fiyero said as he planted a kiss on the top of her hair.
Elphaba rolled her eyes, but she was smiling. "Thank Oz. I was already starting to worry that us being married would stop you from being cheesy," she said teasingly.
He laughed and drew her closer. "Never."
The food was delicious and they spent the next two hours or so talking and laughing together about everything and nothing. Fiyero just couldn't keep his hands off Elphaba. Not in an inappropriate way, of course; but he was constantly holding her hand, or he put his arm around her waist or her shoulders, or he leant down to kiss her. Elphaba struggled weakly and swatted at him, blushing furiously – especially when Galinda and Nessa started squealing and smiling widely whenever they saw it – but he didn't let go of her.
After dinner, they returned to Shiz. Fiyero only barely managed to sit Elphaba down on the couch, peel her dress off her and put her in a shirt of his to sleep in, before she fell asleep against his shoulder; and he scooped her up in his arms and moved her to the bed, changing into his own nightclothes and joining her within a few minutes. He watched her as she slept, a smile playing around his lips. She was so beautiful… and now she was all his.
He wrapped her in his arms and buried his nose in her hair, breathing in her scent. He still couldn't believe that she was here and she was real. Everything that had happened between them was real, even though most people would never know that – they wouldn't believe it, anyway. But it was real to them. They knew it had happened, and that was the most important thing.
He loved her beyond reason, and he was so incredibly grateful that she had woken up from her coma and that she would be alright again, and that she remembered everything that had happened now; but also that they were married, that she could stay with him, for the rest of their lives. Because frankly, the thought of her going back to Munchkinland, to the father who cleared out her room days after she had fallen into her coma, the man who had cut off the life support of his own daughter… it sent shivers down his spine.
On a rational level, he knew that Frex wouldn't actually kill Elphaba; but that didn't make much of a difference to Fiyero. In any case, he was beyond relieved that she would never have to return there ever again.
Fiyero wrote a letter to his parents the next day, telling them that he and Elphaba were married. Elphaba sent a letter to Munchkinland as well, figuring there was no use in stalling; her father would find out about it anyway.
Fiyero received a reply a few days later – his parents apologised that they couldn't come over to Shiz at the moment, but that there was a lot going on in the Emerald City, where they were still staying, and they would stop by later. They wrote that even though this had come as a complete surprise for them and they weren't exactly happy with the way it had happened – they were royalty after all, and Fiyero was the heir to the Vinkun throne – they were happy for them both and congratulated them on their marriage.
Honestly, his mother wrote, if this girl is the one that changed you to the point where you're actually getting good grades and settling down, we can only be grateful to her. I'm proud of you, Yero.
His father added a short report about the things happening in the City at the moment.
We have appointed a new ruler of Oz, he wrote. A Gillikinese man that has ruled Gillikin for a few years at some point and has been a general in the Ozian army, so he is well accustomed to being a leader. We don't expect any trouble with him; but just to be sure, he will be watched closely by all the rulers of the different provinces to make sure something like this will never happen again.
He also wrote that Morrible was still in prison; and most of the people were demanding her being sentenced to death. The Vinkun king wasn't sure if that would happen, but he assured them that at the very least she would stay locked up safely in Southstairs for the rest of her life.
And then Galinda showed up at their door, completely frantic.
"Elphie," she said, out of breath – she had clearly run all the way here. "Your father is here."
Elphaba swore softly under her breath.
"He wants to talk to you," Galinda continued. "He's furious – Nessa is trying to calm him down a little."
Fiyero helped Elphaba to her feet, keeping his arm around her waist to steady her. "Do you want to go now?"
"Might as well get it over with," Elphaba reasoned. "Besides, it will only get worse if we keep him waiting."
They made their way over to the courtyard, where Frexspar was sitting on a bench, listening to Nessarose talking. When he saw them approaching, he rose to his feet, his gaze icy.
"Elphaba," he hissed coldly. "You are many things, but I never thought stupid was one of them. Have you completely lost your mind?"
Elphaba straightened her back and raised her chin defiantly. She was ready to tell him what she should have told him a long time ago.
Fiyero, sensing her determination even though he didn't know what she was planning, tightened his grip on her waist.
"I love Fiyero," she declared, meeting her father's gaze. "That's all you need to know. I don't have to defend myself or to explain myself to you, Father. I am an adult and I can make my own decisions. Nessa was there and she approved, as did Galinda, and that is what matters to me."
Frex' eyes narrowed. "You foolish little girl," he spat, but she wasn't finished yet.
"You never cared about me," she said, her voice trembling slightly. "You have hated me from the moment I was born, and why? Because my skin was a different colour. You accused me of having caused my mother's death and my sister's disability, and I believed you. For years, I let you dominate my life. I used to think that if I only cared for Nessa, if I did well at school, if I behaved the way you wanted me to, that maybe you would notice me. The real me. That maybe you would care, maybe you would even be proud of me."
Frex didn't say anything.
"But the truth is that no matter what I did," she said, looking up at him, "it was never enough. It would never have been enough, because you didn't care. You didn't want to care. I used to think that I didn't deserve to be loved. Fiyero," she gripped his hand tightly and he squeezed hers, letting her know that he stood with her, "Fiyero and Galinda were the first ones to show me that I do. I do deserve to be loved, just as much as anyone else. And Oz knows I never found that love with you."
Frex still kept silent, though he looked at Nessarose for a moment, as if determining her stand in all this.
"I'm not asking you to care," said Elphaba. "I'm not asking you all that much, really. You don't have to write to me, or talk to me, or even acknowledge me; because I know that that's what you've wanted since the moment I was born. All I'm asking is for you to allow me to visit Nessa and to allow her to visit me. That's it. I married Fiyero because I love him and I know I will be happy with him. When summer comes, we'll be going to the Vinkus together; and once we graduate, I'm going to live there. You won't have to see me ever again if you don't want to. Just… just don't cut me out of Nessa's life."
Frex looked at her, really looked at her for perhaps the first time in his life; and he didn't see a green aberration, a living and breathing mistake that caused commotions and disgrace everywhere she went. Just for a moment, he saw her for the strong young woman she had grown into, and he faltered.
"Father," Nessa said softly.
He looked at her.
"Please?" his youngest daughter asked him.
Frex looked at Elphaba, then back at Nessa and then at his oldest daughter again.
"Very well, then," he conceded. "That is how it will be."
Nessa broke into a smile and Elphaba sighed with relief, leaning a bit more heavily against Fiyero. He wrapped his arms around her and pressed a kiss to her temple.
Frex looked at them both, watching them silently for a moment. Then he said, "Congratulotions."
Elphaba gave a small nod and Fiyero said, "Thank you."
Nessa wheeled forward to hug her sister tightly; then Fiyero joined in and so did Galinda, and they ended up in a group hug, with Frex watching them a little awkwardly.
When Elphaba was sitting on the edge of Fiyero's bed later that day, running a brush through her long, ebony hair, Fiyero went to sit behind her and wrapped his arms around her waist, planting a kiss at the back of her neck.
"I am so proud of you," he told her as he put his chin on her shoulder. "The way you stood up to your father this afternoon… it was amazing. You were so brave and so strong, Fae."
She blushed. "It was nothing," she waved him off. "But… I wanted him to know that he has no right to protest now that I'm finally doing something for myself. He never wanted me as a daughter, so he has no say over me now."
Fiyero smiled and pulled her back onto the bed so that she was lying on her back and he was hanging over her. "I love you, my beautiful wife."
Her smile was dazzling. "I love you, my amazing husband," she replied, kissing him upside down.
He pulled her further onto the bed and lay down next to her, running his fingers through her hair as he drew her even closer.
"Who could have guessed that we'd end up like this that day you showed up in my room as a ghost?" Fiyero asked, shaking his head in amazement. "Do you realise that it's only been, like, two weeks?"
She smiled. "You know…" She brought her hand up to trace his jaw line with her fingers. "Despite everything, I kind of liked the way we were back then," she said softly. "The fact that you were the only one who could see me, I mean."
He turned his head and kissed her fingers. "You scared me to death that day," he murmured. "And many more times after that."
She chuckled. "I guess I'm going to miss the fact that I could walk through walls, and transport myself anywhere I wanted to, and the fact that no-one else could see me…" She looked into his eyes. "But I'm glad to be back," she said softly. "Otherwise we wouldn't have gotten married, for one, and I wouldn't have missed that for the world. I'm so proud to be your wife now, Yero."
She blinked, taken aback. "Are you crying?"
"No," he sniffled.
She grinned. "You are!"
"I'm just…" He sighed and kissed her forehead. "I'm just grateful to have you," he said honestly. "In every way possible. I'm grateful to have you back from your coma, and to have you, in general… to have you as my wife. And I will do everything in my power to make you happy, Fae. For the rest of my life. Because you deserve that, and so much more."
She laughed incredulously, wiping her own eyes with her sleeve. "Now you're making me cry."
He stroked her back softly, moving to pull the blankets over her. She snuggled into his embrace with a happy sigh and he continued to stroke her back, lulling her to sleep.
"I promise you, Elphaba," he said softly, "that no matter what happens, to you, or to me, or to us… I will always love you. Forever. If you'll let me."
He had thought her to already be asleep, but she just smiled and curled into him a little bit more, her head on his chest.
"I guess I'm okay with that."
Fiyero just grinned like an idiot.
I want to thank you all for reading and reviewing, adding this story to your favourites or following it - it really means the world to me. And a big, huge, enormous thank you to all those people who have nominated me or voted for me in the Greg Awards!