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Chapter 25

A few years later

Klaus had spent weeks on the mural in the ballroom. When Caroline was at work, he would sit and paint and sketch the large canvas. Considering how large the canvas was, it was not a surprise that it had taken him so long to put it all together. Tonight, however, was the night and he prayed that it would all pay off.

A lot had changed in the couple of years since Katherine and Elijah had gotten married. For a start, parenthood had also occurred for them. Several months before they celebrated their first anniversary, Katherine had discovered that this time she was pregnant. At this point, she'd taken her coil out and was instead deciding on which birth control option to go on next, leaving the only barrier being a condom. That had not worked, and Katherine had gone to the royal gynaecologist to discover she was having a baby. In November, the year after their wedding, they gave birth to Henry Mikael Mikaelson, named partly for the deceased uncle to the child. He was a joyous young boy, and was loved by all around him. When Katherine had fallen pregnant, she had again been scared, but was a lot more prepared and had come round to the idea fairly quickly. Her pregnancy hadn't been smooth, but no pregnancy is. She did love her son, and it had definitely had matured her. Though nobody thought it was possible for Elijah and Katherine to come together more, but they definitely had in their role as parents. It was definitely an adventure for them.

They weren't the only ones. Only a few months after the Elijah and Katherine wedding, Finn and Sage had walked into a family dinner to announce they'd eloped at Sage's local church, using the elderly organist as a witness. They had discussed it and neither of them particularly wanted a big wedding, and organising it- especially since Finn was (then) second in line to the throne. Esther had nearly dropped her plate when they'd announced it, hugely offended that she was not able to go to her second son's wedding. Luckily, Mikael had talked her around and she (reluctantly) accepted it. Only two months ago, Finn and Sage had welcomed Amelia Anne (named from Anne of Green Gables, of course), a beautiful girl with fiery red hair like her mother's. Though it was obviously early days, she was a very calm and placid baby, opposite to her bouncy and excited cousin.

Kol and Davina were dating, and had been since he'd taken her to the opera. After a year or so, after dancing around their feelings, Marcel and Rebekah finally got together. The big brother in Klaus got angry and he'd chased Marcel around the palace gardens for a good few laps when he first found out, but he eventually gave it his blessing. It seemed strangely peaceful and perfect for the Mikaelson siblings, but maybe that was how it was meant to be all along.

Now, a few years later, Klaus was doing something he never thought he would do.

A few years ago, Klaus would have laughed if someone had said that he would be proposing to a woman. Never in his mind had he ever thought that he would be a (hopefully) married man. He just thought he would prove his father right and never be with a woman- and he was somehow happy with that, being a bachelor with no children. Elizabeth I had never married nor had children and she was a great monarch. He was no less of a person for doing neither. Yet, as he continued his relationship with Caroline, he'd fallen more and more in love with her. Of course, he hadn't gone into the relationship lightly but he had never expected to be standing here on this night, ready to propose marriage. He loved this woman more than anything else, he had no idea how, but here he was, a complete gonna. Now, when he woke up in the mornings, he couldn't imagine not shifting her into his arms. One thing Klaus loved was when he came home from a day of appearances, and when Caroline came home from wedding planner, and the two would just settle down on the sofa to watch their favourite thing- 80's films. Klaus would lay down, Caroline cuddled into his side, head tucked against his shoulder. As they did, he'd reach out and play with her hair, whilst she would rub her hand against his chest.

It had been a hard transition for Caroline, from regular girl to girlfriend of a prince. As they were not yet engaged, she was not entitled to royal protection, so she had to battle the constant crowds and paparazzi that followed her around. It was hard for her to work to the newsagents to grab some milk, and see her face splashed on the tabloids. Often, people in the shops would recognise her, and awkwardly shuffle around her. Sometimes they would take photos, right in her face as though she was not there. It was fine when she was in small town Mystic Falls, where the people knew and cared for her, but anywhere in the capital was hell for her. She hated being bothered doing normal things with friends like going to the cinema or having a drink, mainly because she hated that anyone associated with her would get her a full treatment. It wasn't so bad when she was with Klaus, as he had his bodyguards with him to steer them away, but it was appalling on her own.

There were upsides, of course. The pair had moved in together after a while. It was much easier for the both of them, as Caroline always had to sleep at Klaus' if they spent the night together, simply because there was nowhere for security to be when they were at her building. She absolutely loved living with him. Further to that, nearly all clients at White Bliss seemed to request the girl who had planned the royal wedding, which meant she was highly in demand, and luckily for her, it meant a pay rise and a rise in station. She loved her job, which meant that she also loved getting the chance to show off more and more. No wedding would ever compare to Katherine and Elijah's, but that didn't mean she wouldn't try.

Klaus, with Elijah and Katherine's help (the only two that knew about this), to The House of Garrard, the royal jewellers, to select the perfect ring. Eventually, with much help and the kind discretion of the jeweller on hand, he'd gone for the platinum Lovers Knot, apparently a symbol of 'eternal love.' He wanted something with sparkle, but not so much so that it was tacky. Thankfully, Katherine knew exactly what Caroline wanted due to their now close friendship, so that helped Klaus a lot. He'd even got the date of when they first got together in the ring, though he had been tempted to do the proposal date before realising he had not set date due to them not knowing exactly when that would be.

Caroline was distracted by Katherine asking her to come over and help her out with Henry. He hadn't explicitly told his sister-in-law that he was proposing tonight, but when he'd asked the favour, she'd winked, clearly understanding. He was so thankful for her and Elijah; thank God Elijah had married a very good woman like her.

He was suited and booted, wearing a nice outfit. Klaus was sure that Caroline would smell a rat, but he'd just throw a lie her way and hope that she believed it. He was sure he would believe it; he'd lied to say that he was doing some low-key art event. Well, he hoped she'd believed it- all he wanted was for Caroline to have the best proposal ever, and that included surprising her.


The prince whirled around to see his girlfriend walk into the room.

"Hello, sweetheart- I see you got my text."

She nodded, walking forward. He held out his arms and she immediately went into them. Circling her into a tight hug, he kissed her head.

"What is it you want, babe?"

"Well," he released her, "I have a new artwork that I've done. It's taken me weeks and weeks to finish, but it's finally done, and I really wanted to show you it before anyone else because I feel you'll appreciate it the most."

Caroline nodded excitedly, "Of course! I love seeing your work."

He took her hand and walked her over to the edge of the stage.

Caroline looked curiously at her boyfriend as he walked over to the giant curtains that were covering up the mural. She continued to look baffled as he pulled on the rope, taking in the effort as it was quite a large rope. Eventually, after a few moments, the curtain pulled back.

'Will you marry me?' was written in large, cursive front, painted in a deep, luxurious black to make it the centrepiece of the portrait. Its thickness allowed it to pop out against the rest of it, which was pencilled and coloured with soft paints. Around the question was a long branch of flowers, all soft pinks, yellows and whites amongst other colours. It was though he had gone around the palace gardens and taken notes of every single one of the flowers that were there. White roses- Caroline's favourite- were a prominent theme, many of them lining the different words.

Klaus looked over at Caroline. The blonde was stood still, hands over her mouth as she covered them in complete and utter shock. She'd not really snapped out of it, so he gently took one of her hands and squeezed it (partly for him, he was hugely nervous) and begun.

"Caroline, I love you. I never thought that I would be here, so in love with a woman that I am asking her to be with me for the rest of our lives. You have made me into a much better, happier person, better than the man my father made. You made me see past that, made me be the Prince that this nation deserves. For the past two years, you've been my constant source of strength and love, and I genuinely cannot imagine life without you. I don't want to live in a world where you are not by my side, guiding me day by day. Every moment I fall in love with you more and more, I don't think it's possible to love you more, yet I do, I really do."

He then took the ring box out of his pocket, flipped it open and went down on one knee in front of her, showing off the beautiful diamond.

"So, Caroline Elizabeth Forbes, will you marry me?"

That finally snapped Caroline out of her trance and a look of absolute joy appeared on her face.

"Oh my God, oh my God, yes, absolutely yes!"

Klaus beamed as he stood straight up, with Caroline not waiting until his arms were open before jumping straight into them. He laughed, lifting her up and spinning around. Caroline giggled as he spun her around wildly, the pair both nearly falling over. Eventually, Klaus' leg slipped and the two went crashing down, Klaus as a landing pad for Caroline. She rolled off him, and they burst out laughing.

"Sorry," she crinkled her eyes together.

"It's not problem, my darling," he playfully winced and put a hand on his back. When Caroline saw, she reached out in shock, but he just laughed, "I'm only playing, I'm just fine."

The blonde nodded before her new fiancé realised something.

"Say love, I haven't put the ring on yet."

"Oh gosh, no you haven't!" in the rush of what had just happened, neither had realised that Klaus was still holding onto the box, with the ring having magically stayed into place. The prince hopped up, holding out a hand to his fiancée. Pulling her up, they stood face to face.

Gently, Klaus took Caroline's hand and slipped the ring on her finger. She beamed in delight and threw her arms around his neck, the two going into a passionate kiss. It was several breathtaking moments before it stopped, but both treasured them.

"How long have you been planning this?"

"Well, I've known I've wanted to marry you for quite some time, but I wanted to wait until after our two year anniversary to propose, I didn't want to rush things. I've been planning it for a couple of months, had to get the ring quite in advance as it was made to order and has been engraved. The mural has obviously taken up a lot of my time, so I have been busy."

Tears stung Caroline's eyes. Many of her clients happily discussed their proposals, but having never received one, Caroline could not exactly relate. Now she could, and she could see why they were so happy. The love between them was so clear right now, and she knew that she would cherish this memory for years to come. In times of darkness, she would remember the moment she would be on her way to becoming Mrs. Caroline Mikaelson. Oh gosh, yes, she would have to change her name- she both wanted to, and knew that she would have to as an incoming member of the Royal Family. There would be a title too, she would be a Duchess, like Katherine and Sage (as per royal tradition, Finn and Sage had been made the Duke and Duchess of York).

"Are you crying?"

"Happy tears," Caroline promised as Klaus went to wipe them away, "Happy tears. Why would I be crying unhappily?"

"Because you've just realised you've promised to spend the rest of your life with me, and that is enough to make any woman weep in despair."

She laughed.

"So poetic, you are. Maybe you should write a book about a poor, nice blonde girl who comes from a regular family who stupidly marries a rich man with a dark secret. Like he murdered his past love or he's...I don't know...a vampire or something."

Klaus laughed heartily, "A vampire! I don't know where you get this stuff from. Anyway, shall we get back to the apartments? I feel a celebration is in order."

Like practicing for the wedding night.

"Of course- are you going to put the curtains back over so it'll be a surprise for everyone else?"

Klaus nodded, going over and pulling the curtains back with ease. Once he did, he walked back over to Caroline, who had her hand outstretched. He took it, gently kissing her hand before they walked out together. She didn't know about the rose petals spread all over their master suite, nor did she know about the champagne he'd personally taken from the vaults- her favourite champagne.

There was still a lifetime of romance to go, and she didn't even know it yet.


A couple of weeks later.

"We will be going in front of the media in half an hour- I repeat half an hour! At 11:00 hours, the announcement will officially made by their Majesties! Karen Smart is here, do not let her be called on, I cannot BELIEVE they sent her here after that stupid article she made...no, no, over there we want it out of the view of the media...OUT OF THE VIEW, I said!"

Clara looked as though she was about to cry, but everything else was going smoothly in Buckingham Palace. The official announcement of the engagement was about to go underway; though they were 99% sure the media hadn't got a clue. The engagement of Katherine and Elijah hadn't come as a surprise, considering how long they'd been together, whereas the marriage of Finn and Sage had been just as much as shock to the press as it had to the families due to its surprise nature. Even two years down the line, people still didn't believe it was entirely serious, just because it was Klaus. Even without break-up and melodrama, a lot of people just couldn't believe that Prince Niklaus had settled down with a female. This rang a lot truer for Kol, however, as he was much more of a playboy than his older brother. There were those who were convinced by Klaus and Caroline, but those people who had given them the benefit of the doubt had not extended that courtesy to Kol and Davina.

Telling everyone had gone down well. Everybody in the family was happy for them- well, nearly everybody. Mikael was still an asshole to Klaus, not much had changed, and he seemed more thrilled that his son had found a wife as a prince, then as a person. The King had been a lot more restrained in his congratulations, especially compared to his wife. He had no problem with Caroline, but there would never be a close in-law relationship here, even with Esther. The royal family were just too restrained. The siblings, however, had been hugely excited that another Mikaelson was ticked off the list, with only Kol and Rebekah to go- it seemed like it was going down in age order. Katherine, the biggest shipper of the pair, was easily the most excited. She'd hugged them both very excitedly, something rather out of character for the girl who was usually more reserved in her affections, even with her husband and son.

The Mystic Falls gang had also been thrilled. Mimi was of course the happiest, as she loved her granddaughter so dearly and was so happy that she'd finally found a man worthy of her affections. Liz and Bill were the same, as they both completely adored Klaus, knowing how much they loved their darling daughter. Bonnie and Elena both knew that Caroline would be the first to marry out of the trio, but that did not make them any less excited. Elena was in a relationship with Damon Salvatore of all people, having met through Caroline, and were very happy together. Bonnie was currently single, but there seemed to be some guy called Lorenzo at her work that her piqued her interest. It was one of those things were both parties denied it, constantly bickering and saying they hated one another, but everybody knew that it was a matter of time before they admitted it. Hopefully it would be soon, it would be so dreadful to see it drag along for so long, especially as it already had.

Elijah was Klaus' Best Man, as a returned gesture from his wedding. Had it not been Elijah, then it would have been Stefan, as he was his best friend. If not, Marcel. On the bride's side, Caroline had no one she wanted more than her soon to be sister-in-law, Katherine. Technically, Katherine was the Matron of Honour, as she was a married woman, hence no longer being a maid. For her bridesmaids, it had also been an easy decision. Rebekah, another future sister-in-law. Elena and Bonnie, her oldest and best friends. Hannah, her step-sister. These were the girls she loved the most and who she wanted walking behind her as they walked down the aisle. There were no people she wanted more than those girls, the girls who had been so close to her from her youth all the way up to her time as an adult.

"Caroline! Make up please!" Clara called.

The blonde walked over to Sabrine, who immediately reached into her belt to start with Caroline's foundation. Even as a future royal, she still didn't like other people doing her make-up however professional they were. It seemed that at royal events, however, she had no choice and would find herself sat in that make-up chair.

"Sit up, please," Caroline shifted upward. As she did, a familiar figure slipped into the seat beside her.

"I hate this makeup nonsense," the tomboy Liz shifted in her seat uncomfortably, "Esther said that I'll need to do it otherwise I'll look bad, and I understand that, but I'm in front of a few television cameras, not the cover of Vogue."

"Mum, there are so many photos out there- you'll be around the world, from London to Beijing."

Liz rolled her eyes. Caroline had wanted Stephen to be there, but Mikael and Esther had been strict in that only Caroline's two biological parents be there. She knew why that was- they didn't want to upset certain segments of society, and she had sadly accepted it. For Mikael and Esther themselves, it was just that they didn't want to be seen sanctioning divorce- Mikael, after all, was Head of the Church of England. For everyone else...well, it wouldn't have been an issue had Stephen been Liz's husband and not Bill's.

"Your grandma kept telling me to dress up more when I was going over outfits. She wanted me to wear this super posh dress, something she bought me years ago in hopes of me wearing to the church services I never attended. I can't actually believe I'm wearing a dress."

She looked pretty in a black and white striped number with a black blazer. Bill was buttoned up in a navy suit, looking way more at ease than his ex-wife.

"You look lovely."

"You're sweet, thank you."

Though Liz was definitely not a girly-girl, Caroline was so excited to do a wedding with her mother. Whilst it was obviously Klaus and Caroline's day, the wedding allowed for connections between families and friends that had not previously been unlocked. It would be so nice for Caroline to ask her mother what she thought of certain wedding things, like patterns and china. Of course, the most exciting thing for her would be trying on her wedding dress. That would be the thing that would be the true mother-daughter moment, and it would be beautiful.

Esther and Liz were an unusual combination that got along rather well. They were as different as night and day on the outside- one a regal Queen with a large brood, the other one a tomboy, tough police officer with a small family. They were, both, however, tough women who cared deeply for their family and society. Esther seemed to understand that Liz was a fish out of water in all of this royal business, and had been accordingly kind to her as a result. On the small number of occasions they had met, they had become friendly and often got along well. As two kind of in-laws, there would be more opportunities in the future. Whilst Mikael had been kind to Bill and Liz, he was clearly too standoffish to see them as friends, though he treated them respect like he did to all. Again, it would be never be close their but neither party minded.

Liz and Caroline chatted as they had their make-up on, the mother trying not to be annoyed as she was made to sit this way and that. She was a polite woman, but she had no patience with this sort of showiness. Once she got to finish, Liz hopped off her chair, giving her daughter as much of a hug as she could, before rushing off.

The blonde continued in silence, closing her eyes as she made sense of the events (and so that her eye shadow could be done). All those years ago, she had watched Katherine and Elijah stand in front of the assembled press in a similar fashion she would be doing soon. They had seemed so poised and elegant, all so far away from the world that Caroline lived in then. She hadn't known that only a day later, her life would be flip-turned upside down by them walking into her place of work. Now, she was engaged to their brother/brother-in-law, a close member of their inner circle and finally sure of her place in the world.

"You're done, ma'am."

Caroline cringed- that's what people had started calling her, ma'am instead of Caroline. That would take a lot of getting used to; she wasn't one for all this formality.

"Thank you," she hopped off the chair and headed to the other side of the room. As she walked, a posh female voice called her.

"You ready for this?" Katherine asked, putting her hands on her best friend's shoulders, "To walk into the jaws of death?"

At the look on Caroline's face, she laughed.

"I'm just joking, you'll be fine. Remember, you're about to announce your engagement to the man you love more than anything else in the world, remember that above all else. Forget about the big wedding and the royalty aspect; just be plain old Klaus and Caroline. When you stand with Klaus, stand tall- be proud to be you. Those media types, they smell fear, any wrong posture or loose sigh will make you look nervous. They'll jump on that; they'll call you unhappy or fearful or something. Smile, remember why you're there- and if you do, well babe, you'll be fine. You look fierce, and you're gonna prove that today. Smile, rock it and then we'll get smashed tonight."

The blonde shook her head, "You are the worst influence in the world, Katherine Mikaelson. What Henry is going to end up like, I have no idea."

"Henry is going to be a badass kid and an amazing King. Also, I'm your best friend so I have to be the worst influence in the world. Now, come here and give me a hug before it's all announced."

The two girls embraced tightly.

"Well," the brunette pulled away first, "You're going to need plenty more of those as these months go on, let me tell you. Break a leg, girl."

She patted Caroline on the back before floating away, every inch the poised princess she was. Caroline watched her walk away with a sigh. Esther and Mikael strode past, both deep in conversation with Clara about media, though Esther managed to tear her gaze away long enough to give Caroline an encouraging nod and a smile. Caroline returned the smile before standing alone in the middle of the room, with no idea what to do.


Finally, that calming voice that she loved so much. Klaus' arms were immediately around her, snaking her in a loving hug. She was immediately relieved by it all, as she always was. Caroline, a neurotic girl, often got flustered when in the media, which is why she often needed some calm down. This, well this was the biggest event they would do, apart from the wedding. As the third-born, they wouldn't probably even marry in Westminster Abbey as Elijah and Katherine had, though they may get the chance- Finn and Sage had forfeited their option, so Mikael may relent. Though, of course, Mikael probably didn't want Klaus to be happy.

"You. Will. Be. Fine," Klaus punctuated every word with a kiss on her shoulder, "You have me, and you know that when I said I wanted to marry you that I also promised I would protect you. You have the staff, and the other royals, and the bodyguards, but your biggest protector will always be me. The media, they're actually gonna be nice here, I'd relish in that more than anything else. Plus, they know what happens when they're rude to you."

About a year and a half previously, some magazine had run a hit piece on Caroline. It had been brutal, destroying her looks and character, making her out as some evil whore who was emotionally unstable and unready to be the girlfriend of a prince. When Caroline had read it, she'd locked herself in her room and sobbed for three hours, unable to be coaxed out by Bonnie and Elena knocking on the door constantly. She'd only calmed down when Klaus had sped to M1 on his way back from an event, finally coming over and calming her down both verbally and physically. It had broken him to watch her sob like that, and it was in that moment he swore that he would do absolutely anything to protect her.

The next day, that had come true. Klaus had done a press conference, and a reporter from that magazine happened to be there- the same reporter that had contributed to the article. When they'd stuck their hand up, Klaus had politely answered their question before absolutely ripping into the reporter. He started off by insulting their reporting, followed by their moral character and their ethical standards (or lack thereof). He finished off by threatening to sue and telling them that he would make them wish that they had never picked up a pen before if they ever did anything that like to Caroline ever again. Finally, he promised that he would never let the media talk about his girlfriend like that. It had sent a serious message, and that was when everybody knew how serious it was. Caroline didn't think she'd ever been happier.

"I do."

"Five minutes," Clara interrupted before dashing off, speaking into her headset.

They both laughed at the interruption, staying in each other's arms as they did. Klaus was more of a romantic guy now, but he was still a man of few words and did not particularly want to say anymore than he needed to stay.

Finally, it was ready.

"Presenting Their Majesties, King Mikael and Queen Esther," Clara announced, holding out an arm before bowing and walking backwards out of the shot. Gosh, it was so much like three years ago.

The two walked into the frame, and stood in front of the media.

"A very good morning to all watching, whether press or citizen. This time, I will not be announcing a surprise marriage."

There was a chuckle from the waiting crowd.

"But I will be announcing an engagement. I am honoured to announce that my son, Prince Niklaus, is engaged to Miss. Caroline Forbes, daughter of Mr. Bill and Chief Superintendent Elizabeth Forbes..."

Klaus squeezed Caroline's arm as Mikael motioned to them.



The two stepped out, ready to begin their new lives together.

Hi everyone!

So I'm sorry to announce that this is the final chapter of Royal Bliss. There will be no sequels or spin-offs; it will just be a one off story in this universe. As I said in the previous chapter, I will be writing a story in 2018, another Klaroline one, but you guys are gonna have to wait for that.

It has been over a year since I began this and a lot longer since I formulated it in my head. I cannot believe how popular and successful this story has been, I even found out it got recommended on Tumblr! I don't have it so that was pretty great to learn.

I'd love to ask if I can just have one more review from each of you now it's all finished, just to see what you think and give me some feedback for the future. My next Klaroline story will be quite different, but the same rules of correct characterisation apply so I want it to be accurate to canon even if the actual tale is AU.

Finally, a HUGE thank you to everyone who read, reviewed, followed, favourited and even just clicked on the story! It's all thanks to you we're fifteen months and 25 chapters into it. I really hope you enjoyed reading it as I truly, truly enjoyed writing it.

I'll see you all again in 2018 for the next Klaroline, but until then, y'all are the best xxx