Okay, so I decided that it would only be right to end it here. I'm thinking about writing a sequel or a prequel, though, so any advice on that would be very welcome. I have really enjoyed this! Thanks for reading along and reviewing and giving all your great advice. Silver Gang girl, thanks for sticking in there the ENTIRE time! Thank-you to Grey Falcon for all your great advice! Thanks to Shivvers for reading and liking. To CommanderValeria and mangacrazy82190, I'm glad that you joined in! To Caribbean Fairy and S(ever)ed, thanks for the encouragement! And to anyone else who reads this, I hope you enjoy!

Chapter Twenty

"Oh, Aislinn!" Neela drew in a sharp breath. "You look. beautiful."

"Really?" There was doubt in Aislinn's green eyes, but not in the eyes of her friend. Aislinn was dressed for her wedding. She was wearing a long, flowing dress of white. The neckline was low and sweeping, the strap sleeves dipping down to fall from her slim, pale shoulders. The bodice was tight with a cord of silver running under Aislinn's breast and a real diamond hanging down from the center of the neckline. The waistline was low, its silver trimming dipping to hang from her hips. The skirt was long and flowy, trailing around her like a wispy cloud. She wore a sheer veil over her head, edged in silver. At her neck, she wore a sliver Y-shaped necklace studded in faux diamonds. She was barefoot with her hair hanging down loosely, and somehow, that made her more beautiful.

Neela, dressed in a simple, but beautiful, blue gown, felt like crying. It was so wonderful!

There was a tap at the door to the new cottage that would be shared by Aislinn and Christopher. That beautiful cottage.

"Who is it?" Neela called.

"It's Gregory!"

Neela almost tripped over her own feet in her hurry to get to the door. She flung open the door, calling back over her shoulder, "Aislinn! It's time!"

Aislinn could feel her heart beating strongly in her chest. It felt like it was going to burst. She rushed to join Neela at the door.

There stood Gregory, wearing a tunic of green and silver. He was smiling at her in a way she knew that only fathers smiled at daughters on their wedding day.

Gregory took one look at her and almost fainted. She was so beautiful!

"Greg!" Aislinn reached out to him, a radiant smile on her face, and took his hands.

Her eyes. they were so alive with light and love.

"Oh, Aislinn." She looked so much like the woman he had loved would have looked on her wedding day.

"Gregory." She reached up to touch his face, frowning. "Gregory. you're sad."

Gregory shook his head, smiling softly. sadly. "Not for you, Aislinn, not for you." He studied her face intently. "It just brings back memories. seeing you like this. I think of what could have been because-because."

"Because I look so much like her," Aislinn finished softly.

Gregory smiled, the traces of sadness slowly vanishing. He offered his arm to the vision before him. "Let's not keep your groom waiting any longer, shall we?"

Christopher stood by Kipper Pond, dressed in a shimmering tunic of silver and midnight blue. On his left stood Heron and Dawson, Heron dressed in green, and Dawson dressed in blue. King Ryan stood to Christopher's left. Silver candlesticks, deep green ivy, and blue morning glories surrounded them. The people of Knight's Rise formed two lines, one on each side of a trail of red and white rose petals. The rose trail came from the new cottage.

Christopher looked down the trail expectantly. His heart was hammering violently in his chest. His gray-blue eyes trained on the cottage door.

Suddenly, music began to play. A group of musicians from the village had come with their stringed instruments to play for the wedding. Instead of playing their usual lively tunes, they were playing this soft, gentle melody. The strains were almost haunting. They filled Christopher with deep emotions.

And suddenly, the cottage door opened. Neela glided out in blue, a huge smile on her slender face. She was smiling at Christopher as if to say, "this is your day, cousin. You've earned it." Then she looked at Dawson and it was obvious what she was thinking then.

"What music is that, Gregory?" Aislinn asked softly as they stood at the opened door of the cottage. Her cottage. Hers and Christopher's.

Gregory felt a chill run up his spine at the wistful, dreamy tone of her voice. She was so in love. He figured that she had been seconds after meeting Christopher Knight of the River Knights of Knight's Rise. "It's the violinists that played that night you and Christopher danced for everyone," he explained.


The haunting melody was beautiful. And suddenly, a woman from the crowd began singing, her voice soft and low, singing in words Aislinn did not know.

"Gregory, let's go now." Aislinn pressed his arm. He nodded down at her and they swept out of the cottage.

A low murmur, full of awe, spread through the crowd.

Christopher swallowed hard when he saw Aislinn. It felt like he was swallowing his heart to keep it from jumping out of his throat. She was so beautiful! He suddenly realized that he was trembling. And smiling like a fool. And there were tears in his eyes. Oh, he loved that woman gliding up the aisle like an angel of light and love and beauty and purity and all that was good in the world!

Aislinn couldn't keep her eyes off of Christopher. She was glad that someone as alert and steady as Gregory was walking her down the aisle, else she knew she would have tripped over her own feet. Through the hazy mist of her veil, only one thing kept her attention-and her heart. Christopher. She was smiling madly, so happy that there were tears in her eyes and she was shaking. She was a bit nervous. What if her highly-strung emotions made her stutter or fall over or something? And what if she was no good at being a wife? What if Christopher.

God, only You can calm me down now.

The music built up to a climax as Aislinn and Gregory stepped up to face King Ryan and Christopher.

Aislinn and Christopher smiled at each other with love shining from their eyes.

The ceremony, performed by King Ryan, went beautifully. In no time, it seemed, King Ryan proclaimed in his deep, rich voice, "in the Name of the High King of Heaven and Earth, I pronounce you man and wife. Christopher Knight, you may kiss your lovely bride."

Christopher smiled that arrogant, yet sheepish smile that Aislinn loved so much. He leaned forward and gently lifted the veil, setting it gently around her white shoulders. "I love you," he said softly.

"I love you," she replied.

Christopher took her in his arms and kissed her. Aislinn kissed him back. It was a kiss both gentle and passionate, and definitely one of the longest wedding kisses anyone in the crowd had ever seen.

Aislinn and Christopher rode out of town towards Chamberlain's Meadow in a tiny buggy drawn behind the white mare Angel. The sun was setting as they reached the spot where they had first met. A little camp had been prepared for them. Silver candlesticks, the candles lit, circled a beautiful little tent and a warm campfire. Strands of ivy were hung about the tent and the candlesticks. There was a hitching post for the horse and barrels of supplies for the newlyweds.

Christopher drew on the reigns and Angel halted right beside the hitching post. He quickly leaped from the buggy and tied the horse to the post. Then, he suavely stood beside the buggy and bowed. "My lady." He offered his hand.

With a cry of delight, Aislinn took his hand and he helped her to the ground. She wrapped her arms around him.

"Oh, Christopher! I don't care what happens to the City now, or the River for that matter! All I care about it that I'm here, with you!" she cried, burying her face in his chest, his strong arms around her.

Christopher kissed the top of her head. "I love you," he said.

The stars were bright that night. It was beautiful. The bride and the groom found joy under the stars.

And just before dawn, they laid there on the hill, looking up at the stars.

"It's perfect out here, love," Aislinn said, her head on Christopher's chest.

It was just the way he had dreamed of it being. Her leaning towards him, her golden hair falling around her face onto his bare chest.

"Yes. perfect." He smiled. Not as perfect as you, Aislinn Knight.

"I love you." Her voice was as soft as a gentle breeze, but as strong as a mighty wind.

Oh, God, thank-you.

It was the prayer of them both.

As soon as they fell asleep that night, wrapped in each other's arms, something strange began to happen. The ground around them began to glow a soft green. The light moved slowly down the meadow towards the river. It suddenly rose up, then shot down into the river's wild waters. The green light suddenly spread throughout the river, engulfing it in its gentle light. And then. it was gone. All was quiet. Even the river.