Chapter 55- A Man In Love
“Marry me, Nora,”
“I said please,” He added when I still didn’t reply.
“I know I said that you’re the only person I’d get down on my knees for but how long are you planning on keeping me on my knee exactly?” He raised a brow.
“Oh... um,” I stuttered, covering my mouth with my hands and stared at him, still not being able to push any words out.
“Are-Are... You sure?” I finally asked, my hands falling to rest beside me. Vince stood up, a small smile on his face.
“I wouldn’t be doing this if I wasn’t,” He whispered
“But?” He raised a brow.
“I’m a mess! I don’t know how to do anything!”
“You won’t need to do anything if you’re the Queen,”
“I’ll actually need to do a lot,” I corrected him.
“I’ll help you,” He moved to hold my hand in his.
“But you’ve not even known me for that long?” I pushed and he chuckled with a shrug.
“My parent’s didn’t know each other for long when they got married but look at them now,”
“You don’t know anything about me though! And I don’t know nearly enough about you either!” I placed my hand that he wasn’t holding on his chest.
“We have the rest of our lives to learn about each other,” He’s got a point there.
“What if there’s something about me that you don’t like?...” I hesitantly whispered out.
Vince landed his lips on my forehead and getting the ring out of its case, slipped it onto my finger and moved his hand to rest on my cheek, kissing my forehead once more.
“I’ll learn to love it just as I love everything else about you... So, are you done with trying to convince me to not marry you or are you finally going to give me your answer?”
Here we go again.
“Donatello! You bloody, annoying, bastard!”
I winced as Vince grabbed his friend by the collar and shook him back and forth. It was a funny sight if I’m being honest.
“You can rattle me, punch me and call me names as much as you want later but now we have a business to attend to. The lion and the men are back with the rest of the rogues, let’s go!”
“No! I have something more important to do! Now, let go of me you annoying sheep’s carcass!”
“Later, hurry up,” I awkwardly waved after the two men, Don who returned my wave and Vince who was trying to release the grip his second-on-command had on him.
“Donatello! I’m going to kill you! I’ll murder you in cold blood and I’ll stuff you like a pig! Unhand me you annoying brat! Have you got a deathwish!?” Oh, I pray Donatello will live to see the next light of day.
I heard a low grumble beside me and turned to see Leo looking up at me. I went to stroke him but paused upon seeing the silver ring on my finger.
“Yes,” I breathed out, smiling at the piece of jewellery on my finger.
I kneeled down in front of the lion cub and as he nuzzled against my legs, I stared at the beautiful, unique ring. It was a simple star-shaped crystal in the centre with two smaller diamonds beside it, it was beautiful.
“Hey, Arturo. I’m getting married... to the man I love,” I whispered, feeling my eyes well up with unshed tears. “I wish you were here,” I added with a long sigh.
“I... really wish you were here,” I bit into my lip to keep it from trembling but failed and covered my face with my hands, trying to will myself to not cry.
“Let’s believe that he is here,” A feminine voice whispered beside me and as I slowly unveiled my face, Vince’s mum was on the grass beside me, smiling at me.
I turned my head away from her and tilted my head to look down at the curious lion cub that was sat in front of me and slowly, my eyes drifted to the ring once more and another smile crept onto my face.
“He’d be proud of you,” She said, raising one of her hands and rested it on my head.
“I know, Arturo’s never been disappointed in me,” I chuckled. “But no matter what I choose to believe, he’s not here,” I reminded myself.
“That doesn’t mean you can’t be happy. You may be the last mage and your family may have passed away but that wasn’t your fault and you shouldn’t beat yourself up about it. Cherish the fact that you’re the one that’s alive and live your life to the fullest, that’s what they would want,”
“But what about what I want? I didn’t want to live, I wanted to be with them,”
“Well...” She struggled to find an answer.
“Well?” I raised a brow, waiting.
“Well, you lived and you’re here now so ‘what if’s’ don’t matter. You saved our Kingdom, you fell in love with my son, you’ll marry my son and hopefully give me grandkids,” I blushed at the last bit and quickly turned away from her again.
“But...” She started once more with a more serious undertone in her light voice and I felt my head curiously turn to look at her who was staring at the grass in front of her.
“To simply live can become an amazing adventure. You more than anyone else, Eleanora,” I fiddled around with one of Leo’s paws as I listened to her words.
I can’t decipher why or how but overtime I’ve come to realise that Eleanora is a heavy name, a name I used to cherish and still cherish but now I cherish it along with all the burdens it’s given me and will give me. Up until the moment this long life of mine will finally come to an end, that’s when this adventure is going to end.
It made me happy though.
I never once dared to think that I would be able to dream of having an ending but now here I was, a simple girl with a simple wish; to live an adventurous life worth living.
“You can make a family. You’ve already done it if we’re being realistic,” She chuckled. “You, Vincenzo, Donatello, Charlotte, Amira and even Lucien- that man has no friends,”
“No. He’s always been an introvert. His best friend was his shop but now it’s Charlotte,” I can’t say I was really surprised, I had guessed along the lines that Lucien wasn’t much of a ‘people’ person and I can’t blame him.
People from this time period are tiring.
I’m probably getting married to the most tiring one of them all.
“Don’t ignore your history since it was part of what made you Eleanora but don’t let it overshadow the rest of your life. You survived, you can be happy... You just have to let yourself be happy because you deserve it, more than anyone,”
“How do you know that?”
“Everyone knows that,” She waved off and I laughed, finally.
“Okay then,” I stood up and brushed down my dress, grinning at Leo as he followed my actions.
“Let’s be happy,” I whispered and he growled his agreement.
“Alexa! Love, that eagle of yours picked a fight with your dog... again,”
I turned my head to see Vince’s dad at the entrance of the garden with crossed arms and an annoyed expression on his face as if this scenario has happened before.
“Again! Dammit!” She cussed but before walking away she hugged me and pulled back, observing me up and down before nodding her head.
“Is everything okay?” I asked.
“Yes, your babies will be beautiful,” Laughing at my reaction, she waved at me before racing over to her husband and the two of them walked back into the palace hand-in-hand.
“Say, Leo... Can Vince and I be like that a few years from now?” His growl was answer enough for me and chuckling, we headed back inside.