Epilogue: The Curtain falls (or so it seems)
A few weeks later, after everything had been returned to normal, and everyone had returned to the kingdom and their respective villages, Sapphire and Cedric were wed. The two goddesses bore witness to it, with Sofia and Amber as the flower girls and James as the ring bearer. The sky was the brightest blue it had ever been or anyone had ever seen. Clouds that dotted the sky were fat and fluffy, almost as if they were large pillows being suspended.
After everything she had been through, Sapphire had finally found her happy ending underneath a flowered archway. Bouquets of a rainbow of colors that were weaved together by many women and children who had volunteered. Jade and Argenta were standing underneath the flowered archway, wearing dresses that were aged and old fashioned. But it suited them rather nicely. Many of the deities that had survived Ruby's war were in attendance; their aged and old-fashioned clothing and golden glow around them caused them to be stood out from the crowd.
Everyone, even many of the monarchs from the surrounding kingdoms were in attendance. Even King Maximus was in attendance. He finally shut up about how great his wedding was when he saw that not one, not two, but a dozen gods and goddesses, both minor and major, were in attendance. Queen Miranda, wearing crème colored clothing, sat in the front row, sat in the front row, enjoying the pre ceremony music.
Slowly the procession began. Music from times of old started to filter through the air as the Nine Muses played their instruments. Amber and Sofia, dressed in crème dresses and with sunflowers curled into their hair, came out walking slowly. The two princesses, one hardened by the battlefield, smiled at their mother, who applauded quietly. They happily tossed bright colored flowers as they walked, covering the area behind them in flowers.
Next came James. The young boy, dressed in a ceremonial dress clothing with a sash over his shoulder, holding a crème colored pillow with two golden rings on it. On the inside of each ring, there was an engraving on it, made in magic fire.
The engraving read: By this ring, I do solemnly swear forever to love the person wearing the twin ring.
After James took his place next to his twin and stepsister, Cedric and Roland came out next. The wizard had requested the King of Enchantia to be his best man. Both wore very nice suits, one that Sapphire had tailored herself over the past few weeks when she was free. The bride to be had made it black with a blue vest and blue tie. Cedric's hair, which was midnight black with snow white bangs, was combed back and tied in a small ponytail. Roland and the goddesses had eventually pardoned him for all attempted crimes and had named him and Sapphire champions of Enchantia. After Cedric and Roland took their place under the flowered archway, then came the maids of honor.
And then the bride came.
Her snow-white hair was done up in old style fashioned, her wedding veil held to her face by blue flowers. Her pale blue eyes were outlined by pitch-black eyeliner and her lips were painted a deep ruby red. Sapphire's dress, tailored from Queen Miranda's old wedding dress, outlined her muscled yet lithe figure. In her hand she clutched a bouquet of blue and red flowers. Cedric felt his breath catch in his throat as he watched his love stroll down the aisle. The Muses had changed their music to a rendition of 'Here Comes the Bride'. Despite him and his stony emotions, tears welled up in his eyes when Sapphire closed the distance between them. Gods she looked…the words struggled in his mind as he continued to look at her. There apparently wasn't even a word the dictionary to describe how beautiful and stunning she looked.
Not soon enough, Sapphire arrived at the altar and together the two sorcerers faced the air goddess. Argenta smiled at the two as the Muses ceased their playing and made their way into the crowd. Raising both arms, the Air goddess preceded the ceremony.
"Welcome everyone to this beautiful ceremony." She said. "And thank you to all those that helped with the lovely decorations. Today we not only celebrate our freedom from Ruby's tyranny and evil, we also celebrate love. These two lovebirds, Cedric the Sensational and Sapphire Starlight, have come together on this day to finally join in marriage. Both have faced trials throughout the years but their love for each other has held fast, like a mountain in a storm." The air goddess turned to James. "The rings, if you please."
The young prince nodded as he carefully handed both wedding bands to the goddess who placed one in each hand of the wizards. Cedric and Sapphire looked at each other, wondering who would be going first with their vows. Argenta sighed as she turned to Sapphire.
"Ladies first," she whispered to the ice sorceress. Sapphire took the ring in her hand and held out Cedric's ring finger with the other. Argenta ordered, "Repeat after me: I, Sapphire Starlight, do take you Cedric the Sensational to be my lawfully wedded husband, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better or for worse in sickness and in health, for richer, or for poorer , to love and to cherish, from this day forward until death do us part."
Sapphire repeated the eternal vow, slipping the ring on as she said it. She couldn't help a smile and some happy tears flow down her cheeks as the day finally crashed down on her. For some reason, this all seemed like a long beautiful dream to the now eternal sorceress. Sapphire was afraid that she was going to wake up in the Mirror Realm….but in her heart she knew that it was real. It was real and absolutely surreal. Cedric went next, repeating the same words as he slid on her ring. The cold metal suddenly warmed as it made contact with her skin. Sapphire could feel the engravings, which would be there until the sun refuses to shine.
"And now the couple will say their personal vows." Argenta took a step back, allowing the two lovebirds to stare at each other in pure happiness and love.
Sapphire started hers first, "Cedric….since we were kids, I had always known that we would end up married. Our love was more than either one of us could ever had imagined. From the bonds that had grown with the love, we both stayed true to each other over the years, until we met again. And now, we have eternity to spend with each other, and together, while we watch the world change around us, our love will be the only constant."
Sapphire smiled to herself when she saw Cedric blink back the tears before he spoke, "Sapphire, when you were missing, I lost myself. I allowed my heart to harden and turn bitter. But when you appeared, I could feel the wall I put up around my heart crumble and it brighten once more. You gave me a purpose in life, one that both of us will share in the coming years."
Argenta stepped back up, a small smile plastered on her face. "Do both of you take each other, to forever love until the sun refuses to shine in the sky?"
"I do," they both chorused.
With a smile as big as Sapphire's, the air goddess boomed, "Then by the power invested in me by the Great Earth Mother, I now pronounce you, husband and wife." She nudged Cedric with her elbow. "You may now kiss the bride."
Cedric didn't hold back anything. He planted a big, wet sounding smooch smack dab in the middle of Sapphire's lips. And Sapphire happily repaid her new husband in kind. The sounds of the crowd cheering and the Nine Muses playing their instruments were all in the background. This was there moment. Suddenly, Cedric pulled back and before Sapphire could do anything, the white banged sorcerer scooped up Sapphire bridal style. Together they made their way towards the recession with the guests in tow.
The recession lasted long after sundown. The food was absolutely amazing. Sapphire, to her frustration, was surrounded by guests congratulating her on her wedding, or complementing the elegance of her dress or the ceremony. Not that she disliked any of it, but she was hungry, and just wanted food. Apparently, none of the guests got that. Thankfully, Jade and Argenta swooped in and guided her out. They helped her get to the buffet table, where she started to dig in almost immediately.
When she had her fill, and everyone was starting to leave, Sapphire allowed herself to wonder out to the balcony. The stars were brighter than the sorceress had ever been in a while. The only time they were this bright, was when Sapphire was being escorted to the Wassaila ball all those years ago. Despite the warm air, a cold breeze ruffled her still done hair. She took a deep breath, allowing the crisp air to fill her lungs.
"What are you going to do now?" Sapphire asked Corundum, who was standing right next to her. The immortal looked at the deceased goddess with the question bubbling in her eyes.
"I will continue to guide this world until I am not needed anymore." She answered. "You know, you, Cedric and Sofia can live in the Palace of the Gods if you wish. Your names are already spreading throughout the lands like wildfire and you are immortal. I am sure that you will be allowed to stay there if you wish."
"As tempting as that sounds," Sapphire spoke slowly, "I think I will have to refuse. Even though we are immortal, we are still human. It wouldn't be right to cut out part of ourselves like that. With all due respect of course."
"Of course," Corundum raised an eyebrow, with a mischievous twinkle in her eye. "Well if you ever change your mind." The goddess floated over to the balcony railings before vanishing in a flash of light. Cedric appeared a moment later. He embraced his new wife, who embraced him back.
"Now what?" Cedric whispered in her ear.
"Now, is the beginning of a wonderful life." Sapphire whispered back. The two sat there until the dawn, smiling at their life that now stretched before them in an infinite road. It was a road, an adventure; the Sapphire couldn't wait to start!