With Hands to Hold

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38

The clearing was full. The whole pack had turned up, as did the other Alphas that had been invited. Even Seth and Orion was seated, around the middle looking dapper in their respective suits. There was a quiet, excited chatter all about as everyone waited for the ceremony to begin.

It was somewhat strange for Vincent to see everyone gathered in the area, considering the last time he was there he had shared a special, intimate moment with Spiraea. That being said, it made the whole thing all the more perfect for the ceremony.

Spiraea, his mother and Marianne had really done a good job planning. The seats for the guests were wooden stumps so as to blend in with the forest around them, the aisle was lined on either sides with candles as it led up to a slightly raised platform.

The platform was decorated with an archway of moon flowers, Spiraea's name sake flowers, and forget me nots as well as more candles. A table off to the left held a gold chalice, a red silk ribbon and a velvet cushion on which their two rings sat together.

He still hadn’t seen the ring Spiraea had chosen for him— his father had insisted on putting his ring for her in its place so as to not let Vincent see before the ceremony.

The table also had a set of papers on it, as well as a pen, held together with red ribbon.

Vincent rocked impatiently on his heels; after having seen his mate, he was no longer nervous in the slightest. In fact their brief meeting had only made him so much more eager to get the ceremony over and done with.

His father and mother stood before him under the archway since they would be officiating the ceremony. Vincent would never say it aloud, but it brought him great comfort to have his parents so close-by, especially officiating. He would have to thank Spiraea for her cleverness later; and the man already had countless ideas of how he could do it.

Sean watched his nervous smile with an amused one of his own, Emilia beside him smiling her own nostalgic smile. They were both thinking about their ceremony; Sean would swear up and down that he was cool as a cucumber, but he had been sweating bullets and Emilia was so worried about tripping over her gown. Such trivial worries that were unfounded, and that were forgotten the moment that they looked each other in the eyes.

Sean’s hand found Emilia’s beside him, interlinking their fingers with a comforting pressure. The woman squeezed her mates had in both gratitude and excitement. No doubt their son and his mate were feeling the same way that they had; but having gone through it themselves, they knew it would lead to nothing but happiness for the couple.

After what seemed like an eternity for Vincent, Spiraea finally appeared, escorted by Fletcher. The two grinned widely, though Vincent was only focused on his mate. The people around them, hell the clearing itself, just seemed to vanish around them both- it was just him and her, in their own moment.

Just like the first time he saw her, his thoughts spiralled; She was so beautiful. He was so lucky, that dress was amazing. He couldn’t wait to take it off. He loved her so much. How did the Goddess bless him so. She was perfect. She was his.

Spiraea sucked in a sharp breath at the intensity of Vincent’s heated stare; it was one of those looks that he saved just for her. One that screamed ‘I’m so in love with you, I can’t wait to show you exactly how much I love you.’

The space between them seemed both too infinite, and closing too quickly. Spiraea wanted nothing more than to be beside him, to feel his hand in hers, to finish this ceremony and have him become hers. However, there was a part of her that wanted to linger, to bask in this moment under his gaze- to watch him, watch her with so much love.

Finally, she came back to herself as she reached his side. Fletcher gave both Vincent a short hug, and pressed kisses to both their cheeks in a motherly gesture which earned a few chuckles from those seated in the clearing. Spiraea shook her head in a silent laugh as Vincent rolled his eyes at his best friend and Beta.

Then Sean spoke, all attention on him, except Vincent and Spiraea who were too busy loosing themselves in each others eyes. In the back of her mind Spiraea made out Sean’s words, he spoke of unity, the pack and the future.

Emilia then brought forth the long red silk ribbon, holding it up for all in the clearing to see before speaking loudly. “Let this be a symbol of your minds, woven together and connecting you in a way that none other will ever understand. With this, you freely surrender onto each other your minds, wholeheartedly and with sincerity, accepting what you can give to each other.”

She nodded gently, and Vincent offered his wrist to his mother, Spiraea following his lead. He took hold of her fingers in his palm throwing her a dashing smile; the girl couldn’t help but swoon slightly at the sight. Then Emilia continued to speak as she began to bind both Vincent and Spiraea’s wrists together with the ribbon, tying the know in a beautiful infinity knot between them.

“Let it be a promise of comfort, companionship, and counsel for you both; know this is where your leadership as a couple takes root. Lead as a couple or not at all. ”

Vincent squeezed her hand in his with a gentle pressure, the action comforting and a symbol of love which Spiraea received gratefully. Her mind was empty of all other thoughts, fully present in the moment before them. Each second that passed by only made her heart swell with greater love of the man beside her.

Sean stepped forward next, in his hands sat the plush red velvet cushion in which the two rings were rested on. He too held up the cushion for the whole clearing to see before addressing them, and everyone else, in a commanding voice.

“Let these be a symbol of your infinite love, a reminder of the promise you make this day through this ceremony. With these rings, you freely surrender onto each other your bodies, wholeheartedly and with sincerity, and accepting that which you can give each other.”

Spiraea went first, taking the ring she had chosen for Vincent into her free hand. She turned to him with a shaky, watery smile as tears pricked at her eyelids. With the ring in her fingers, Vincent finally got a proper look at it, the thing looking too large for her slender fingers.

The ring Spiraea had chosen was made of dark polished wood in a simple band, around the inside of the band had one word carved in all its simplicity. ‘Siempre’. Vincent’s heart skipped a beat; he could feel the weight of the word, though simple it meant everything to him. He once more sent a silent prayer to the Goddess for his soul mate beside him. He loved the ring, especially the silent promise of ‘Forever’, a secret vow made only for him to wear.

She turned his hand that held hers so that his fingers were in her palm, whispering a quiet ‘te amo’ as she slipped the ring onto his large finger. A singular tear fell from the mans eye as he embraced this moment; he would never live a moment as perfect at this one.

Vincent let out a small breath, as he reached for the delicate ring he had made. Now that the moment had come, he could only give himself an internal reminder no to drop the damned thing. He chuckled quietly to himself, and when he looked up to Spiraea she was laughing with her eyes too.

‘Don’t worry, you won’t drop it.’ Spiraea’s voice filtered playfully into his mind, a small laugh tinkling into his mind melodiously.

So Vincent did as Spiraea had before, picking up the ring in his hand and sliding it onto her finger with as much delicacy as he could manage. Spiraea sucked in a breath at the beautiful ring, the care that had gone into its craft was evident. She recognised the small blue flowers as forget me nots; just as she had promised forever, he had promised a lifetime of true, undying love.

She could no longer hold back the river of tears, as they came pouring from her eyes like a dam had broken. She silently promised to herself that she would never take the ring off- she never wanted to take the ring off.

“Let this be a promise of your respect, reverence and loyalty for each other; know that this is where you embody your role as leaders to your pack. Lead by example or not at all.”

Emilia then held the golden chalice in her hands. She looked to Sean with a smile and they grasped it together, holding it up as they had done with the previous items. Then Emilia spoke:

“Finally, let this be a symbol of your souls. Not only in bond with each other, but with your pack. With this ambrosia, made by the hands of the pack, you freely surrender onto each other your souls, wholeheartedly and with sincerity, accepting this bond which the Moon Goddess has given you.”

Vincent drank from the chalice first, then passed it to Spiraea. The sweet honeyed and flower wine was sweet on her tongue, burning a pleasant heat as it ran down her throat; it was no wonder they called it ambrosia, it truly tasted as if it were fit to be food for Gods.

Sean smiled so widely there were smile lines by his eyes; he was unbelievably happy for his son and now daughter in law. He focused himself so that he could finish the rest of the ceremony for the couple.

“Let this be a promise of your commitment, connection and solidarity with each other and to your pack. Lead with all that you can give, or not at all.”

Emilia now untied their joint wrists, stepping back to address them with a shaky voice and tears in her eyes. “You are now both joined in the eyes of this pack, I wish you happiness in your future. Know that as Alpha and Luna, you will face challenges but I have every confidence you will overcome them all. You have Sean and my blessing, we hope that you can grow together in love, strength and understanding.”

She leaned forward to press a kiss to each of their foreheads, wiping her tears as she pulled away with a breathless chuckle. Sean then stepped forward, agreeing with Emilia and adding that they would always be there to support them if needed before also kissing both their foreheads.

Then he pulled away, addressing all those in the clearing: “Your Alpha and Luna.”

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