|Series||His True Destiny by Azaelia Silmarwen|
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|Next||His True Destiny: Chapter Thirteen|
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Chapter Twelve: EmilyEdit
Five years had passed since Rowan had become Mayor of Bowerstone. During this time, his popularity became greater than all the other Mayor’s Bowerstone had had, due to his uncorrupted and fair decisions. It might have also been because he was a Mayor that did more for Bowerstone than anyone else. On top of that, he never allowed his responsibility as a Mayor to get in the way of his responsibility as a Hero and vice versa.
But every leader needs a holiday, and after everything he had done since he became a qualified Hero, Rowan decided that he deserved a holiday. It was for that reason, exactly five years later found him unpacking his belongings in the room he had booked for a month at the Oakvale tavern.
For years he had yearned to spend some time back in his home town, he just never had the chance to do so.
When he had finished unpacking, Rowan left the tavern and absently walked around the village. As he walked around the village, he found Emily lying in the sun, staring up at the clouds.
‘Hey, stranger,’ he said, looking down at her.
‘Rowan!’ she exclaimed, jumping to her feet and embracing him. He returned the hug fondly. ‘I didn’t think I’d see you again now that you are a Mayor and famous Hero.’
‘I know what you mean,’ said Rowan, sitting down on the grass with her. ‘I never thought that I would be able to come here again to relax.’
‘You’re on holidays?’
‘Yes, it’s my first holiday in… well; I’ve lost count when I last had a holiday.’
‘You deserve it,’ Emily said sincerely. ‘You have done so much for the people of Albion. Who would have ever thought that you would become a greater Hero than the Hero you portrayed in those games we used to play as kids?’
‘I guess some dreams do come true,’ Rowan laughed, lying down at the grass and staring at the clouds above him. ‘Although, our games were far more glamorous than reality.’
‘I know,’ Emily said quietly, looking down at his face. ‘In our games you never came so close to death.’
Rowan’s eyes snapped to her glum face.
‘You scared a lot of people, Rowan,’ she said. ‘I was one of them. When I learnt that you might not make it, I started cursing your Heroics. My family was one of the families that went to the Temple of Avo, praying to him to save you. I was so relieved that you survived.’
‘You are a good friend, Emily,’ Rowan said, smiling up at her.
‘Do you ever wonder what your life would have been like if the raid never occurred?’ she asked, lying down next to him.
‘All the time,’ Rowan admitted, ‘but to be honest, I’m glad it did happen – apart from the fact that so many people died. If it hadn’t happened, I probably wouldn’t have become a Hero, let alone a Mayor. Not to mention Theresa probably wouldn’t have realised her full potential.’
‘Theresa is alive too?’
‘Yes, though I don’t know where she is at the moment.’
Rowan and Emily laid in the grass until unset. They just laid there asking each other questions about each other’s lives, laughing, and reliving past memories from when they were kids.
‘I guess I should be going,’ Emily sighed as she got to her feet. ‘I promised my parents I’d be home by as the sun was setting. Hey, why don’t you come over for dinner? I’m sure my parents wouldn’t mind. They would love to see you again.’
‘I’d like that.’ Rowan grinned at her, before following her to her house.
Emily was right when she said that her parents wouldn’t mind. They welcomed him with open arms, exclaiming how glad they were that he was alive and well. They were also excited to hear about all his quests and adventures. They were a good audience too. They laughed and gasped in all the right places.
‘So how’s your brother doing?’ Rowan asked Emily, during desert.
‘The jerk’s in prison,’ Emily said uncaringly. ‘He was arrested for stealing and bashing people up.’
Why doesn’t that surprise me? Rowan thought, thinking back to the last time he had in countered Emily’s older brother. It was back when he was saving Rosie from him.
‘When will he be released?’ he asked.
‘We don’t know,’ Emily’s mother replied. ‘I don’t think he’ll ever be released.’
‘The boy had it coming to him,’ Emily’s father sighed.
‘So, Rowan, are there any special girls in your life?’ Emily’s mother asked slyly.
‘Only friends and my sister,’ Rowan replied, going slightly red.
‘Will any of these friends become more than friends?’
‘I don’t think so. Briar and Whisper think they are my sisters. They love bossing me around, teasing me and are always trying to do what is best for me.’
‘What about Emily?’
‘Mother!’ Emily hissed, going red.
Rowan went equally as red.
‘Leave the poor boy alone, Jane!’ Emily’s father laughed.
‘I was only asking.’
‘I’m sorry about my mother,’ Emily apologised to Rowan as she said goodnight to him.
‘That’s okay,’ Rowan laughed. ‘Listen, what are you doing tomorrow?’
‘I haven’t got anything planned.’
‘Then would you like to hangout again? I really enjoyed your company today.’
‘I’d love to!’
-----HIS TRUE DESTINY-----
During the month that Rowan stayed at Oakvale, he spent most of his time hanging out with Emily, except when he was out helping the people of Oakvale. It seemed that a Hero never got a holiday. Then, when it was time for Rowan to leave, Emily ended up coming with him to Bowerstone. Rowan had given her a good paying job at the office. She accepted it immediately.
However, both of them had selfish reasons for doing this. Rowan offered her the job because he would miss her when he left and she only accepted it because she would miss him too. They had been very good friends as children, and now their relationship was beginning to develop into something more.
Two months after working at Rowan’s office, the childhood friends finally admitted their feelings for each other and started dating. Then, on Emily’s twentieth birthday, Rowan proposed to her. She immediately agreed, by kissing twenty-two year old Rowan passionately on the lips.
Both Rowan and Emily wanted a quiet wedding with only close friends and family, which meant four months later, was their wedding day.
The morning of his wedding found Rowan anxiously pacing around his room at the Guild, feeling that he would rather face Jack of Blades as a dragon again than get married. He was so nervous. He wished that his father was there to give him words of wisdom. He also hoped that Theresa would be at the wedding. He had been unable to send her a wedding invitation seeing as he didn’t know where she was. He merely hoped that she had seen a vision of his wedding and came.
He had his bachelor the night before, not that he had male friends with him. In fact, he only had two people with him; Briar Rose and Whisper. They took him out drinking and helped him enjoy his finally hours as “a free man”, as Briar put it.
‘Do you need a drink?’ the Guildmaster asked as he entered Rowan’s room.
‘More like a dozen,’ Rowan replied weakly. ‘Is it normal for someone to be this nervous?’
‘Yes, it is. Have you bathed?’
Rowan nodded his head.
‘Then you should dress.’
Again, Rowan only nodded his head.
The Guildmaster ended up having to help him seeing as the young adult kept putting things on inside-out or socks on that didn’t match.
‘You need to calm down, Rowan,’ the Guildmaster said firmly. ‘I’ve never seen you so anxious.’
‘I have faced every single creature living in Albion, but the thought of getting married to the girl I love scares me for some reason.’
‘I’m sure that when you see her walk down the aisle all your nerves will vanish in an instance,’ the Guildmaster said confidently, as he did Rowan’s tie.
‘Do you think she’ll come?’ Rowan asked suddenly.
‘I don’t know, Rowan, but one would think she would. I doubt she would want to miss her little brother’s wedding.’
‘I hope she does, even if I see her for just a second. I need to know that she is alright.’
At eleven o’clock sharp, Rowan stood at the altar, in Oakvale, waiting for Emily to walk towards him. In the crowd he could see Jane beaming with joy, the Guildmaster looked so proud, as did Briar and Whisper. Even Thunder looked happy to be there. After Rowan and Whisper had exposed the truth about Lady Grey, Thunder and Rowan’s relationship had slowly improved.
Rowan took in the faces of the people he and Emily had grown up with, but he didn’t see the one face he wanted to see. His upset him. He had hoped that at least one member of his family could be there to celebrate this momentous day with him.
However, any sadness he had shortly disappeared when the music began to play and Emily began to walk down the aisle, holding her father’s arm. She looked even more beautiful than usual with her long hair pulled back in an elegant bun and her long white dress enhancing her body. The Guildmaster was right. All of Rowan’s nerves and worries vanished instantly as he watched his beautiful bride walk gracefully towards him.
Emily smiled up at him once they were both standing before the wedding officiant.
‘Dear friends,’ the wedding officiant began, ‘we are gathered he today to celebrate the binding of this man and this woman. This commitment is not to be entered into lightly, but with certainty, mutual respect, a sense of honour, and eternality. Rowan and Emily, your love for one another and your willingness to accept each other’s strengths and weaknesses with understanding and respect will help cement the foundation for a strong and lasting marriage. Learn to respect your individual outlooks, but learn to share your thoughts, experiences and dreams with each other. Today, there is a vast unknown future stretching out before you. That future, with its hopes and disappointments, its joys and its sorrows, is hidden from your eyes…’
Not if you are Theresa, Rowan thought.
‘… may the love with which you join hearts and hands today and never fail, but grow deeper and surer with every year you spend together.’
The wedding officiant then went one to inform the room of how Rowan and Emily met and that they were childhood friends who managed to find each other again after their paths went their separate ways. He said that it was no coincidence that they both survived the Oakvale raid and then met up again. He said that they were clearly soul mates, destined to be together.
Then it was time for the asking. He had Rowan and Emily face each other.
‘Do you, Rowan, take this beautiful bride to be you lawful wedded wife for as long as you both shall live?’ he asked Rowan.
‘I do,’ said Rowan, his eyes fixed on Emily’s brown ones.
Her smile widened, not that Rowan thought that was even possible.
‘And do you, Emily, take this Hero to be your lawful wedded husband for as long as you both shall live?’
‘If anyone has any reason for why this couple should not be wed, please say so now.’
Rowan and Emily turned and saw a few fan-girls who had managed to get passed the Heroes guarding the area in which the marriage was happening.
‘Do fan girls even get a say?’ Rowan asked the wedding officiant.
‘If they have a good reason, they do,’ he replied apologetically. ‘Why do you object?’
‘The Hero is mine!’
Rowan rubbed the bridge of his nose as several Heroes appeared to remove the fan girls.
With the fan girls gone, it was time for the wedding vows and ring ceremony.
‘I, Rowan, take you, Emily, to be my beloved wife, to have and to hold, to honour, to treasure, to protect, and to be by your side in sorrow and in joy, during the good times and the bad, to love and to cherish you always,’ Rowan declared as he slipped an expensive golden ring on Emily’s ring finger. ‘I promise you this from my heart, for the rest of my life and even during death.’
Emily had tears of joy in her eyes. In the crowd, Rowan heard Jane blow her nose.
‘I, Emily, take you, Rowan, to be my lawfully wedded husband, my constant friend, my faithful partner and my love from this day forth,’ Emily said as she put a wedding ring on Rowan’s ring finger. ‘In the presence of Avo, our family and friends, I offer you my solemn vow that I will be your faithful partner in sickness and in health, in good times and in bad, as well as in joy and sorrow. I promise to love you unconditionally, to support you in all your quests, and to honour and respect you as long as we both shall live, whether in this world or the next.’
‘I now announce you man and wife. You may kiss the bride,’ the wedding officiant, informed Rowan.
Rowan gladly accepted.
With the official ceremony over, Emily and Rowan were free to mingle with their guests, but as Rowan turned to look at the crowd, he felt an even bigger smile than he already had, appear on his face. Theresa was walking towards him.
‘She’s here!’ Rowan breathed.
Emily looked at Rowan, frowning slightly, not knowing what he was talking about. He smiled down at her, before letting go of her hand and hurrying towards Theresa. He embraced her tightly.
‘I was afraid that you wouldn’t come,’ he told her.
‘I would never miss my little Chicken Chaser’s wedding day,’ she informed him.
‘Chicken Chaser… serious?’
‘That was how you became friends with Emily,’ said Theresa. ‘You were chasing chickens when you accidently ran into her.’
‘I’m never going to live that down, am I?’
‘No, you won’t. Come now, I want to congratulate my new sister-in-law!’
Rowan and Theresa then made their way to the curious Emily who was standing with her parents.
‘Congratulations, Emily,’ Theresa said, hugging her lightly. ‘My brother doesn’t deserve you.’
Theresa ignored Rowan, while others laughed at her comment.
‘Theresa, it’s good to see you again!’ Emily said, now knowing who the woman was.
‘I hope the two of you will be very happy together,’ said Theresa.
‘I’m sure we will,’ Emily replied and Rowan put his arm around her shoulders.
‘Rowan said that you are a seeress,’ Jane commented. ‘Do you see good tidings in their marriage?’
‘Yeah, do you?’ Emily asked eagerly.
Theresa turned and faced Emily directly.
‘You will be happy until the day you die,’ she replied.
Emily gave a little squeal of delight and hugged Rowan tightly.
They then walked off to speak to their other guests.
After they all had something to eat, Emily dragged Rowan to perform the opening dance. They had a famous bard present, who sang a beautiful love song called, This I Promise You. Once the song was finished, many of the guests came forward to dance. During this time, Emily and Rowan mostly danced together, though they did spare time for Emily to dance with her father and Rowan to dance with Theresa.
The rest of the wedding was then a blur to Rowan as he was too focused on Emily to really notice anything else. But what he did know was that when he fell asleep that night, with Emily tightly in his arms, he knew that his wedding day had been the best day of his life.
Written: 21 February 2013