Music for the Heart, Chapter 6: I Could Not Ask for More

Reply to Geonn

Posted to the LadySlash mailing list September 19, 2001

      Claire woke the next morning to find herself still entangled with Alex. The rain was still beating against the window pane. She stroked the other woman's red hair out of her face, then leaned forward and placed a small kiss on each closed eyelid. Alex woke, looking up at Claire. They kissed quickly. Alex smiled and whispered, "Good morning, fiancee."

      The radio played softly...

Lying here with you, listening to the rain
Smiling just to see the smile upon your face
These are the moments I thank God that I'm alive
These are the moments I'll remember all my life
I found all I've waited for and I could not ask for more.

      "Good morning to you, fiancee," they kissed again, taking longer to separate this time.

      Alex let her fingers drop to trace a line down the curve of Claire's breast. "So... what made you come back last night?"

      "I couldn't live without you. I've never loved anyone like I love you."

      A tear rolled down Alex's cheek. "I'll never love another the way I love you."

      Claire glanced at the clock. "We have an hour before we have to be at the Agency. Want to spend it... productively?"

      Alex smiled. "I thought you'd never ask."

      The song continued as Alex rolled over on top of Claire, eager to continue the events of the previous night.

Looking in your eyes, seeing all I need
Everything you are is everything in me
These are the moments I know heaven must exist
These are the moments I know all I need is this
I found all I've waited for and I could not ask for more.

      ---

      Hobbes took a bite out of the pizza his partner had actually sprung for and wiped his mouth with his sleeve. "So? What'd you wanna talk about?"

      Darien said, "Can I ask you a question about Claire?"

      "Sure. You guys still, uh..."

      "No. No, we're not. Actually, this is sort of... relating to that. What would you say if Claire found a soulmate who made her happier than she had ever been? Someone she loved more than life itself?"

      Hobbes shrugged. "Claire's a great person. She deserves someone who makes her happy."

      "Even if it were against the rules?"

      "Rules, what rules? We're talking love here, Fawkesie. There are no rules that can stop the heart." He took another bite of the pizza.

      "What if, in this case, there WERE rules that said she couldn't love this wonderful person?"

      "Then I say the hell with the rules."

      Darien nodded. "Okay, same situation, only it's Alex."

      "Same answer. I haven't known her very long, but if she's in love, why should anyone try to stand in the way of that?"

      Darien smiled. "Glad to hear you say that, Hobbes. Because it's true."

      "What's true? The Keeper found someone or Alex did?"

      Darien smiled and proceeded to tell Hobbes the truth.

      TWO WEEKS LATER

      Claire climbed out of her jeep, adjusting the flowing gown so that it didn't touch the asphault as she climbed out. Her hair was pulled up and pinned, with small white flowers threaded through the blonde strands. She wore a long pearl necklace and a strapless white gown that reached just past the high heels she wore. She bundled the dress in her hand and made her way down the walk to the gazebo in the center of the park.

      The gazebo looked over a sparkling lake which was now vacant, save for a couple of swans floating lazily on the surface. Claire walked onto the elevated stage of the gazebo to the approval of the three already waiting for her. Darien smiled. "You look gorgeous, Claire." He was wearing a fitted tux with a black button at the neck instead of a tie.

      Hobbes was also wearing a tux, but his smile was a little more irritated than Darien's. He was holding a large bouqet of roses and tulips, sprinkled with baby's breath. He lightly kissed Claire on each cheek and said, "Radiant, Claire. Absolutely radiant."

      The minister also smiled, shaking Claire's hand. He was a friend of Darien's who just happened to be ordained. Claire's heart was beating a mile a minute, threatening to explode through her chest. She took the bouqet from Hobbes and turned.

      The door to the van slid open and Alex slipped out. She was also wearing a white dress, but this one was cut slightly higher than Claire's and had a strap which wrapped around Alex's right shoulder. Alex made her way up the walk and stepped onto the gazebo, wrapping her arm around Claire's. Alex's hair was bundled much in the same manner as Claire's, but lacked the flowers. They took their place between Darien and Hobbes and faced the minister.

      The minister looked at the two men, frowning. "Pardon me, ma'am... which is the best man?"

      Darien raised his hand.

      "Oh. And... the maid-of-honor."

      Darien pointed at Hobbes.

      Hobbes rolled his eyes. "Yeah, yeah, can we continue, please?"

      Claire giggled and brushed her lips across Hobbes' cheek. "Thank you for being my maid-of-honor, Bobby."

      The minister smiled. "We are gathered here today, in the presence of these witnesses, to celebrate the love these two lovely women have for each other and to mark that love for now and forever by bonding them together in marriage."

      The speech went on, but neither Alex nor Claire heard any of it. They were lost in each other's eyes, their hearts pounding in rhythm with each other. Suddenly, Darien extended his hand. The ring. Alex took the ring from her 'best man.'

      "Alexandra, repeat after me, please. I, Alexandra Monroe, take this woman to be my lawfully wedded wife, to have and to hold, in sickness and in health, for richer and for poorer, as long as we both shall live."

      He then did the same with Claire and she repeated it without pause, as Alex had. When she finished, the minister said, "Then by the power vested in me by the state of California, I now pronounce you..." He glanced at Darien.

      Darien shrugged and offered, "Married?"

      "...married. You may kiss the bride."

      Claire and Alex kissed softly at first, but then pressed their bodies closer and began to deepen the kiss. Darien put a hand on Alex's shoulder, pulling her softly away from Claire. "Now, now... none of that. Not in front of the minister."

      The minister shrugged. "I don't mind."

      Alex smiled and pecked Claire's lips once more. "I think we'll save it for the honeymoon."

      Hobbes pulled a bag of confetti from his pocket and tossed it into the air, showering over the newlyweds.

      They made their way down the gazebo stairs and walked quickly towards Claire's jeep. Darien leaned against one of the wooden posts holding up the roof of the gazebo. "God... did you ever think you'd see Claire that happy?"

      Hobbes sat on the steps. "I never really thought about it... but I'm glad she found someone."

      Darien sighed. "I just wish this could've been a big production. Church, family, flowers..."

      "Without the Official findin' out about it? Think, Fawkes."

      Darien sighed. "Yeah, I know. It sucks working for the government." He ran a hand through his hair and said, "Come on, we'll grab some lunch and head back to work."

      Hobbes followed Darien down the walkway. "You got it, partner. You buying?"

      "I bought yesterday!"

      "But you invited. The invitee is the one who pays. Says in the rules."

      "Rules? What rules?"

      "The rules of lunch."

      Darien patted Hobbes' stomach. "Who am I to argue with a master?"

      "Ha, ha, very funny."

      Across the park, a large man wearing a baseball cap fed the pigeons that had gathered around his feet. Sitting next to him was a smaller man, pretending to read the paper. The smaller man folded the paper and said, "You were right, sir."

      The Official looked up from the birds. "So it would seem, Eberts."

      Eberts reached into his jacket pocket. "Should I report this finding to Health and Human Services?"

      The Official smiled. "Are you blind, Eberts?"

      Eberts frowned. "No... sir..."

      "Let them be." He stood, gathering his things.

      Eberts followed suit. "But, sir... this sort of relationship is not tolerated. They are to be reported and separated immediately."

      The Official turned. "Eberts... let it go. I just wanted to see for myself if it was true. Besides," he turned and looked across the lake at the gazebo. "I may be a bastard... but I would never mess with something that perfect. Come on, Eberts, I'll buy you a coffee."

      They left, leaving the park to the swans who had seen each other and started swimming side by side.

      THE END

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