We had decided to have the wedding at 1:00 pm, so everyone could enjoy Winterfest morning, including us.
“Your turn, Lexie,” I said, smiling. She picked up her present cautiously, then shook it. I watched her face light up as she took off the wrapping, revealing a small blank recipe book.
“Oh my Watcher! This is great!” She flipped through the pages, and I smiled. “I never would’ve thought of this! Thanks, Addie!”
“You should have something other than notecards to write your recipes on,” I replied. Lexie was the only one who still called me Addie from time to time.
“Your turn,” she said, placing a box in my hands.
I opened the box and took out… a stack of cards? Almost like business cards, and as I looked at them closer, I realized that’s what they were. They had Adelaide Clemonte printed on them with my work email below. I looked back up at Lexie, still confused what they were for.
“They’re in case you get back into politics,” Lexie explained, “so you can hand them out and stuff.”
“That’s actually really cool!” I smiled, hugging her. I actually hadn’t decided yet if I was going to go back into politics, like really into it. I haven’t talked to Dani about it either, and with everything that happened with her family, I want her to be 100% comfortable with anything I’m doing, especially work-related.
“Ok, your turn, Dani,” I said, turning to my wife. She smiled once she saw what was in there. I’d gotten her some new seeds for the garden. She loves the outdoors, and naturally really enjoyed working with our garden. That’s what her new job is, too! She’s working as a seed collector. It doesn’t bring in a lot of money, but that’s fine, since I got a ton of money from working at the RGWI so long and that I’ll probably be working soon, even if I’m not sure exactly what I’ll be doing. As long as she’s happy, so am I. Happy wife, happy life, right?
“These are so amazing! And when they go into bloom, they’re so pretty!” She looked back up at me. “Thanks, Adelaide!” I kissed her on the cheek and we all sat down, chatting about our plans for this winter. I wasn’t exactly sure what to do in winter, because there hadn’t been a real winter, complete with snow and everything, in decades. Plenty of people didn’t know what to do. Lexie looked up what people had done all those years ago and we got a pretty good idea of what it was like. I was pretty excited to have a snowball fight, and Lexie wanted to make snow angels.
I looked into Dani’s eyes, smiling, and I leaned in and whispered, “We’re already renewing our vows, I’d say this marriage is going pretty well.”
She giggled, and replied, “I’d say so too.”
I looked around at everyone, just watching us. Watching us get married.
“So, who are all these people?” Dani asked.
“Over there are my friends, and over there is my cousin Kiara and her family,” I nodded my head towards them, and looked back to her. “Where are your friends?”
“There was a big gardening meeting today for our department, so they couldn’t make it.”
“You missed a big gardening meeting for me?” I whispered seductively.
“I couldn’t miss our wedding,” she replied jokingly, “and the meeting was even in Granite Falls. That’s how much I love you.”
I giggled, and kissed her on the cheek. “I can’t wait to spend this rest of my life with this woman,” I yelled out so everyone could hear me.
“Kiss the bride,” Lyric yelled, and so… I did.
I heard cheering, but it all faded into the background as Dani whispered, “I love you.”
“I love you too,” I replied, smiling. My cheeks hurt from smiling so much as the fireworks exploded above us.
“I’m so happy for you,” Kiara said. “Leo and Chloe didn’t exactly want to come, though.”
I laughed. “Yeah, I bet weddings aren’t very exciting for kids.”
“Chloe’s a teenager now, actually. She’s 15.”
“That’s crazy,” I said, looking over to Kiara’s daughter. She was practically grown!
“I know. It brings some new challenges, too. She’s already snuck out a few times to meet boys…”
“Damn,” I said, laughing, “she is certainly a teenage girl.”
Kiara nodded and waved Chloe over. “This is your aunt Adelaide.”
“Hey,” Chloe said.
I smiled, and waved. “Hi.” I still vaguely remember the day she was born. I was a little kid and Kiara’s screaming woke me up. Mama had explained Kiara was having a baby, and that baby was Chloe, who’s now —age. Chloe’s my first cousin once removed, but I’m still just going to call her my niece, it’s easier. (I had to look that up, who would just know this kind of stuff?)
Chloe reached out to shake my hand, and I felt a zap once I did. I didn’t even have time to react, before just jumping in shock. The girl doubled over in laughter, giggling. She’d had a hand buzzer-thing hiding in her hand.
“Chloe, don’t do that!” Kiara exclaimed. “What were you thinking?”
Chloe shrugged, hardly shaken at all. “I thought it would be funny. It was.” She walked off, and Kiara looked from me to her.
“Chloe Essie Dale, get back here!” Kiara yelled, and Chloe reluctantly walked back. “Give me your phone, young lady.”
Chloe held out her hand, rolling her eyes. “I don’t know what you’re gonna do with it anyway.”
Kiara gaped at the screen. “Chloe, this is not okay! Take it down.”
I peeked over Kiara’s shoulder to see Chloe’s latest post. ‘Pranking my aunt on her wedding day’ was in big letters followed by ‘hilarious‘ and ‘must see‘
“I could, but what’s the point? It’s already been viewed, plus it’s great entertainment.” Chloe snatched the phone back and sauntered away, and this time Kiara didn’t make her come back.
“Watcher, she can be so annoying sometimes,” Kiara sighed. “Can you even say that about your own daughter?”
I blinked and looked over to her. “Yeah, I think you can. Is she always like that?”
“Umm, yes. She loves causing mischief. It drives Nathan and I nuts. At home we have to make sure she isn’t terrorizing Leo. I’m pretty sure her little brother is scared of her.”
“That’s tough. She’ll probably grow out of it eventually.”
“Yeah, but we’ve got to live with her until that happens. I can’t believe my parents had four kids!” She sighed, looking back over to her daughter again. “I remember my little brother Scott was an actual freaking menace, especially to my little sister, his twin Savannah, since Emmett and I could stop him while he was younger. He focused his actions on someone his own age. My parents hated it.”
“Is that why you moved in with us?”
“Honestly, yes. I couldn’t deal with everything going on anymore, and then there was my aunt Selena, with two little girls and another kid on the way, and I figured it would be easier to live with them then my crazy family.”
I nodded, and she smiled. “Anyway, I’ll let you get back to your new wife. I hope you guys will be very happy together.”
“I think we will be,” I replied, looking over to Dani, who was talking to my friends.
“Congratulations again,” Kiara said, and went over to her husband.
We’d told everyone it was going to be a blue theme, for winter, so everyone was wearing blue. San Myshuno wasn’t very snowy, but it’s still cold, so we figured it could be winter-themed anyway.
“You guys look nice,” I said to my friends, walking over to them.
“Us?!” Lyric exclaimed, “It’s your wedding, you look gorgeous!”
I smiled, and looked down at my dress. It was my mom’s wedding dress, and I wanted to wear it in her memory. I’d gotten it fitted for my size, but besides that, it was the same dress. “Thank you,” I said, smiling. “It was my mom’s.”
“That’s really cool,” Lyric said, “I would have worn my mom’s wedding dress, but her taste is just so not me. I don’t know what she was thinking with her dress! But as long as she liked it, for it was her big day.”
“I wasn’t close with my parents,” Raini said, “so I didn’t really feel like using my mom’s gown.”
I nodded, and added, “So, Lexie made cake, should we try some?”
“Yes,” Zoe said, grinning. “I bet it’s great, your sister is an amazing cook!”
“She definitely is,” I agreed.
And there we were, eating cake, dancing, and talking about anything and everything. I felt like I could reach out and touch the pure happiness in the air. I was ecstatic.
“What a great start to our new lives as married women,” I said to Dani, smiling.
She grinned and slid her arm around me, pulling me closer. “A great start with a great woman,” she replied.
I kissed her and held her close. I wouldn’t change anything for the world. This is everything I could have wanted, a future with an amazing woman, surrounded by people I love. Maybe it wasn’t easy to get here, but it was worth it, every single time.