My Happy Ending – Epilogue

Let’s talk this over
It’s not like we’re dead

Ashleigh pouted as her mother and Joey fussed over her that morning. She was sitting in Joey’s living room, getting her make-up done for her wedding to Nick that afternoon.

“Sit still Ashleigh, God.” Joey scolded as she proceeded to attack Ashleigh with a make up brush.

“I am sitting still!” Ashleigh replied, though she was doing anything but. She was fidgety beyond belief, already feeling antsy. She was nearly ready to go, besides putting her dress on, her make-up was the last thing she was getting done.

“I don’t know why you two are insisting on getting married outside.” Her mom commented while making sure Ashleigh’s hair was in place. “It looks like it’s going to rain any minute.”

Ashleigh rolled her eyes. The last thing she cared about was the weather. After everything she and Nick had been through in the past couple of years, rain was the least of her worries. “It’ll be fine, mom. I’ve got an umbrella. Besides, it’s going to take place under a huge tent thing. It’ll be fine.”

Was it something I did?
Was it something you said?

“Not getting cold feet, are you?” Kevin laughed as he and the others arrived at the park where Nick and Ashleigh’s wedding was supposed to take place.

“Not at all.” Nick smiled as he sat down on one of the wooden chairs. The guests would start arriving shortly, and Nick was grateful for the couple of minutes he had with his best man beforehand. “Thanks Kev.” He said.

Kevin just smiled at the younger man. “You and Ashleigh have come such a long way.” He commented, and Kristin nodded in agreement.

Nick looked up at the sky. Though it was grey and rain threatened to spill over at any moment, he couldn’t have felt happier than he already did.

Don’t leave me hanging
In a city so dead

Nick stood silently at the alter. He smiled to himself as the flower girl (one of Ashleigh’s friends daughters) made her way through the guests, and as Baylee followed quickly behind with the rings.

His breath nearly caught in his throat as all the guests rose from their seats and Ashleigh began to walk towards him. Her dress was simple, and her hair was pulled back. As she walked down the aisle with Grandfather linked to her arm, he couldn’t help but grin.

And as Ashleigh looked up at him, she grinned as well.

Held up so high
On such a breakable thread

Ashleigh grinned at Nick as she got read to read him her wedding vows. As Joey handed her the paper she’d written them on, she bit her lip. It had taken Ashleigh nearly an entire day to figure out exactly what she would say.

“Nick, you were everything I ever wanted since I was fourteen years old. You were my idol, the person I desired to be with more than anyone in the world. Now, as I stand here before you I can’t even imagine how things came together like this. I love you more than anything, and not because your poster hangs above my wall, but because you love me with such honesty and intensity that I never thought was possible until now. I will always love you, Nick.”

You were all the things I thought I knew
And I thought we could be

Nick smiled as he went to read his vows to Ashleigh. He looked back at Kevin, who nodded for him to proceed.

“Ashleigh, you are the love of my life. I can’t imagine where I would be without you. There was a time when I thought this day would never come, but you and I got through it together. You’ve kept me sane and you’ve kept me rational, even when I didn’t deserve it from you, you still gave me love. You believed in me more than anyone ever has. I’ll never stop loving you, I couldn’t even if I tried.”

You were everything, everything that I wanted
We were meant to be, supposed to be
But we lost it

Ashleigh and Nick glanced at each other as they placed their rings on each others fingers. After all they’d been through together, it was very much a relief for them to stand in front of all their friends and family and declare their love for each other.

All of the memories so close to me just fade away

After being told he was able to kiss Ashleigh, Nick promptly took her in his arms and kissed her tenderly. Ashleigh blinked back a couple of tears as she kissed him back. Everything she’d been dreaming about for the past year was finally happening. She and Nick were offically married.

All this time you were pretending
So much for my happy ending

The reception was being held at a small recreation centre not too far away from where they’d had the wedding. Once everyone was seated, Joey grinned at Ashleigh and began her toast to the bride. Ashleigh smiled back, though she worried a little about what Joey was going to say.

“Ashleigh has been my best friend since we were in the sixth grade. She and I did everything together. I know you’re going to hate me for saying this Ash, but she and I adored the Backstreet Boys… and from the looks of it, she still does.” Joey giggled.

Ashleigh rolled her eyes. She’d known Joey was going to bring that up.

Joey continued. “She’s been my best friend through everything. Through High School, and even though we were in different faculties in University, she always made time for me. In all the years I’ve known her, I’ve never seen her as happy as she is when she’s with Nick. Congratulations you guys, you deserve it.”

You’ve got your dumb friends
I know what they say

After Joey’s toast, dinner was promptly served. If Nick and Ashleigh had their way, they would have been happy with burgers and fries, however Ashleigh’s mom wasn’t about to allow that. So instead, they ended up having a nicer dinner of grilled chicken and rice. Ashleigh and Nick grinned at each other, both thinking how much they would rather be eating something more along the lines of fast food.

They tell you I’m difficult
Well so are they

After dinner was over, Kevin stood up to toast Nick as his best man. Nick gave Ashleigh a look, knowing Kevin would say anything he could to embarrass Nick. Ashleigh just giggled.

“Nothing makes me happier to stand here on Nick’s wedding day. I’ve known him since he was twelve years old, and I watched and helped him grow up. I feel like I should say something cheesy like ‘I remember when Nick came home from his first date with Ashleigh’” Kevin laughed, and paused as the other guests laughed as well. “But that’s not exactly how it turned out. Needless to say I couldn’t be happier that these two managed to find their way back to each other, because I’ve never seen Nick happier.”

But they don’t know me
Do they even know you?

Once dinner was over, it was time for Ashleigh and Nick to have their first dance as a married couple. Ashleigh had told Nick he should be the one to choose the song, since he was of course the more musical oriented out of the two of them.

“Joey mentioned something to me about the fact that when you two were younger, you said that you wanted to dance to a Backstreet Boys song at your wedding.” Nick said, and Ashleigh rolled her eyes. How many more times were they going to make fun of her? Still, she couldn’t help but grin a little at the irony of the situation.

“I thought that would be a little weird.” Nick continued. “So I thought I’d choose the next best thing.”

And as Ashleigh joined him on the dance floor, God Must Have Spent A Little More Time On You by Nsync started to play.

“You’re a loser.” Ashleigh giggled as she danced with him.

“You love it.” Nick replied, kissing the top of her head.

All the things you hide from me
All the shit that you do

“I’m ashamed, Nick. Don’t you know that Backstreet Boys and Nsync are arch enemies?” Joey laughed as she approached Nick and Ashleigh once they were finished their dance.

Nick pretended to look surprised. “I’ve never heard anything about this!”

Joey shook her head as she looked at Ashleigh. “Too bad, it’s too late for you to get out.” She joked.

Ashleigh smiled as she put her arms around Nick’s waist. “He’s cute, so I’ll let it slide.”

You were all the things I thought I knew
And I thought we could be

“Congratulations, Nick.” Bob Carter smiled as he approached his son.

Nick smiled as he hugged his father. Through all his family drama, he was grateful for the fact that they were still on speaking terms at least. “Thanks, Dad.”

“So you’re the one that finally got him to settle down.” Bob said, flashing Ashleigh a smile.

“That would be me.” Ashleigh grinning, shaking the hand of her new father in law. Though she understood Nick’s reasons for not wanting his mother there, Ashleigh was happy that Nick was able to get along with his father.

You were everything, everything that I wanted
We were meant to be, supposed to be
But we lost it

“Welcome to the family, Nick.” Clayton Dane said, as he and Ashleigh’s mother approached the two of them. “You’re going to have your hands full with her.” He said, winking in Ashleigh’s direction.

Ashleigh rolled her eyes, but giggled. “Grandpa, I’m not five years old anymore.”

Nick just laughed. “Don’t worry, I already do.” He said, putting him arms around Ashleigh.

“You’re so grown up.” Cathy commented as she looked at her daughter’s smiling face. “I’m so happy for you.”

“Thanks Mom.” Ashleigh beamed.

All of the memories so close to me just fade away

Nick stood with the other four Backstreet Boys for a moment as Ashleigh sat with her girlfriends from University.

“Good for you, Nicky.” AJ congratulated him.

“You know, I never thought I’d say this, but you and Ashleigh are beyond perfect for each other.” Brian said, giving Nick a hug. “You guys have both changed so much.”

Nick chuckled. “Thank God for that.” He said, glancing over to Ashleigh. She was laughing and talking with her friends, wearing the same upbeat happiness he’d fallen in love with.

All this time you were pretending
So much for my happy ending

“If you smash that cake in my face, you’re not getting laid tonight.” Ashleigh said as she and Nick went to cut the cake.

Nick clasped a hand to his chest. “But, Ashleigh! It’s our wedding night!”

Ashleigh laughed and gave him a look. “Then don’t put cake on my face.”

Nick grinned at her devilishly, and as they went to cut the cake, he playfully grabbed a chunk of it.

“Don’t.” She warned him, a smile playing on her lips.

“I would never.” Nick said, shaking his head, but of course he was lying. Ashleigh squeezed her eyes shut as he messed up her picture perfect make up with wedding cake.

“You’re horrible.” Ashleigh said right before Nick kissed her.

“See? Now it’s fair.” Nick said, referring to the cake that was now on his face as well as a result of kissing Ashleigh.

It’s nice to know that you were there
Thanks for acting like you cared
And making me feel like I was the only one

“So?” Joey pressed as she walked up to Ashleigh and quickly whisked her away from Nick for a private girl talk. “Did you get anything special for tonight?”

Ashleigh laughed at her friend’s interest in hers and Nick’s sex lie. “Maybe.”

“Come on Ash! You have to tell me.” Joey prodded.

Ashleigh only giggled. “Maybe I’ll tell you tomorrow during the gift opening.” She said.

“You’d better.” Joey giggled.

It’s nice to know we had it all
Thanks for watching as I fall
And letting me know we were done

As the evening drew to a close, Ashleigh and Nick were taken to their hotel suite via limo. Ashleigh sighed as she rested her head on Nick’s shoulder.

“Hey, don’t fall asleep!” Nick nudged her. “We still have plenty of activities planned for this evening.” He said suggestively.

Ashleigh opened her eyes and looked up at him. “I thought I told you that if you smushed the cake there’d be no sex.” She joked.

“That’s not funny, Ashleigh.” Nick said seriously.

Ashleigh laughed. “You’re so cute when you want sex.” She said, moving her lips up to touch his.

He was everything, everything that I wanted
We were meant to be, supposed to be
But we lost it

As Nick unlocked the door to the suite, Ashleigh stood at the entranceway behind him, not moving.

“Come on.” Nick urged, eager to finish what they’d started in the limo.

Ashleigh shook her head. “Aren’t you supposed to carry me in?” She asked innocently.

Nick sighed jokingly. “Oh of course, how could I forget?” And as he said so, he picked her up and carried her inside.

All of the memories so close to me just fade away

Snuggling as close as she could to Nick, Ashleigh pulled the covers over herself. She couldn’t have imagined that day being anymore perfect, and thanked her lucky stars once again that she was able to marry the man that she loved. “I love you, Nick.” She said quietly, before drifting off to sleep.

“I love you too, Ash.” Nick replied, turning to face her.

All this time you were pretending
So much for my happy ending…

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