Short Story. Chapter 21

Last Chapter, in the first of many stories that I will post in this blog. So, thanks to all who have been following Owen’s and Rory’s story.

“Terry?” Rory walked into the church, her voice echoing around empty pews before she found her friend waiting for her at the altar.

“Good, you came.”

Rory frowned, as she continued to walk, or rather limp toward her friend. It had been a hell of a night and even though she ached all over, she had rejected both Terry’s and Kyle’s offers to postpone the wedding until everyone was okay.

“You said it was an emergency.”

“Yes. It is. Come, you need to see the dress.”

“Oh,no. Did it get ruined? Oh, Terry, I…..”

Only she was surprised when Terry snorted and moved away to reveal a wedding dress resting against the chairs she and Kyle would sit on in a few hours.

“What’s that?”

“A wedding dress.”

“Yours?”

“No.” Terry’s eyes filled with tears. “Yours.”

Rory stopped, shocked, as she studied the dress then her friend, until she noticed Terry wasn’t alone. Kyle came out from under the shadows, so did her parents.

“Mom? Dad? What is going on?”

“Terry called us, dear. Oh, Rory, come here.” Her father squeezed her in a bear hug, as they hadn’t been able to see each other after Rory’s near death experience. Though she had assured them she was fine, she knew both her parents had been worried about her.

“Hey, hey. I’m fine.” She held on to her dad, then welcomed her mom into their family embrace.

When they were done, Rory wiped away the tears from her face and turned her attention to the dress on the chair. Then, she felt dizzy as she recognized the dress.

Her wedding dress.

Is that……….”

“Yes.” Terry moved to stand next to Kyle, only to let another person into the altar with them.

“Rory.”

She felt her eyes widen in shock as she saw Owen, his arm on a sling, wearing a tux, looking as handsome as ever walking toward her.

“What……” She swallowed the tears and relief of seeing him here with her, after she had almost lost him twice in one night.

“I made a mess of things before. I left you and I don’t think I’ll ever be able to forgive myself.”

“But you’re here now.” She whispered, then closed her eyes as his good hand caressed her already tear-stained face.

“I am. And I am not going anywhere, ever again. I almost lost you last night and I am not going to lose you again.”

“I don’t understand….”

“Rory, will you marry me? Today? Right now?”

She lifted her head to stare into his eyes and found the light she thought she had lost when he had left her at the altar two years ago. The same light she thought those men had stolen from her just when she had found it again.

She knew she had forgiven him the second she knew he had put his life on hold to save those women who had been treated like things. Rory had never stopped loving him, and she knew she would continue to do so for the rest of her life.

She turned around to study her friends, her parents, and then the man who was her life, her hero, her soul mate.

“Yes, yes, I will.”

Owen pulled her to him and crushed his mouth to hers, the kiss both relief and need, past pain and constant love.

“Then we getter get you dressed.” Terry whispered, tearfully.

“Dearly, beloved, we are gathered here today……….”

Rory and Owen stared at each other as the priest, their two friends and her family, joined in their love, and bore witness to the promises they each made as the priest declared them husband and wife.

“I love you, Rory.”

“I love you, Owen.”

“Can’t wait to spend the rest of my life with you.”

“Ditto.”

The End.

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