Clarisse slowly fluttered her eyes as she woke to find the top of her nightgown wide open and her new husband stroking her breasts. She was still too groggy to understand what was going on. He gently placed kisses from her breastbone, up to her neck, and then to her mouth that still trembled with desire from the night before, making her sleepy senses come back to life.

"Good morning, my queen," he said in a whisper, his light breath tickling her neck. She giggled as she sat up against the pillows. "You have such a beautiful laugh." Clarisse couldn't help but blush.

"Is this how I'm going to wake up every morning, finding your hands all over my body?" Joseph raised an eyebrow and smiled.

"Is that a complaint, my queen? I can surely stop if you so desire." There was a playful tone in his voice. Clarisse pulled him closer to herself and they continued to kiss.

"Heavens no...don't you dare stop!" Clarisse murmured, running her hands down his chest.

"Good, because this is only day one!" He was trying extremely hard to be gentle with his bride; he viewed her as a beautiful rose because she was such a delicate flower, but the thorns made her a force to be reckoned with, especially as a queen. "We have the rest of our lives to wake up this way." Yes, Clarisse thought, they had the rest of their lives to share. The wait had all been worth it. The previous day's wedding couldn't have come at a better time.

"Oh Joey, last night was a dream come true. I've wanted you for so long..." She could barely speak as Joseph tickled the back of her neck.

"Joey? Is that your pet name for me?" he laughed. Clarisse stopped in her tracks and looked startled.

"Is that alright with you?" Joseph slid the nightgown completely off her body and squeezed her tightly against himself.

"I like it. But you may call me whatever you wish, my queen." He guided her to lie down again, taking in the sight of her natural beauty.

"You know I'll only be queen until this afternoon. Once that crown is on Mia's head, the throne's hers!" Joseph took a deep breath and looked to the ceiling.

"God help us all!" He ran his fingers through her fine blonde hair, not at all letting up on the kissing. "But in all seriousness, I know she'll do a fine job. She had the best teacher." Clarisse pulled away and rolled her eyes.

"Talking about politics isn't very sexy," she said. "I know, let's talk about the first day we met. I had just been crowned queen, when this utterly delicious man entered the room. The first two words you said to me were, 'The eagle has landed.'"

"We ended up talking for hours on the stairs!"

"Then Rupert came in... I always had a feeling he was aware of our attraction."

"King Rupert, may he rest in peace." They were rocking together now; the kisses were filled with more passion, the caresses were getting mor sensual, and even in their age, the heat was beginning to rise.

"You don't have to say that, you know," Clarisse remarked, breaking the kiss. "I'm making love to you right now. I don't want to hear anybody else's name." Joseph inhaled deeply as the wonderful feeling intensified.

"If you insist," he replied. "The beautiful thing about making love to someone isn't just the feeling we share, but how our love for each other grows with it. I love you, Clarisse. You will always be my queen." That husky voice of his was enough to make her melt; deep down, she knew Joseph was meant for her. He could always read her like an open book, knowing what she was thinking, knowing how she was feeling, and knowing when she ached for him.

"Joseph, my preotector, my angel..." She placed a kiss on his neck and continued to whisper his name. He could hardly believe the moment was real.

"I am so undeserving, Clarisse...how could you have waited for me?" She pondered a moment.

"Well, I suppose I knew our day would come eventually. I've loved you since the moment I first saw you. You were worth it." Her heart pounded rhythymically with his as thunder struck below the covers.

"Joseph!" she cried, holding onto him as closely as she could. He let out a long, heavy breath, letting the warmth consume him before collapsing besisde her once more. Clarisse rolled over onto her other side to face him with a broad smile.

"Youre such a beast, Joey!" she giggled as before. They kissed again, the thirst still strong. Just then, the phone rang. Clarisse reached over and answered it. "Hello?"

"Are you two done yet, Grandma?" Clarisse looked puzzled.

"What do you mean, Mia?"

"For being a castle, the walls aren't very thick!" The remark was followed by a flood of laughter from she and Lily. Clarisse rolled her eyes and sighed.

"Yes, Mia, we just made love. I'll be down for rehearsal of the ceremony in half an hour." She hung up the phone. Joseph couldn't help but chuckle.

"I wouldnt worry about the castle gossip this morning, Clarisse. It was expected!" She wrapped her nightgown around her and kissed him on the forehead before leaving the bed.

"At least we don't have to hide it anymore!" Then she went into her own walk in closet and proceeded to get ready to hand over her crown. Between marrying Joseph and Mia's success, she couldn't have been happier.