Chapter 34 : Epilogue: Wait For You
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Everyone took the 'fun' part of the phrase 'time flies when you're having fun' a little bit too seriously. We were always out of the house for this or that. And we did have fun, I won't deny it, it's been an amazing summer, but I still spent my evenings wishing it was the beginning and I was back in the garden with Louis. Every time we shared a look, I could tell he felt the same. Every time he'd say good night, I knew he was thinking about it as well.
I think good night became his most used word. That night, in the garden, when I finally started to drift off, I swear he almost said good bye, then he corrected himself. The day after, when I eventually went home, he chose to say 'I'll see you later' instead.
Good bye is not a word Louis likes very much.
It's not a word I like at all.
The whole way to the train station, I dreaded the moment he'd finally have to say it. Now we're here, the feeling is so much worse. I don't want to hear it.
Louis keeps hold of my hand the whole time, his dad is willing to carry his stuff for him, and he keeps me talking about when he gets back and things we should do, places we should go. Always in England, never in Paris.
The time seems to go faster than it did during the summer and the announcement that people should start boarding Louis' train rings in my ears, almost deafeningly. It's really happening. He's leaving.
Louis stands up and moves to say good bye to his family, hesitantly letting go of my hand for the first time all morning. I linger behind him, knowing I'll get mine soon enough, and I can't help but smile at their words of encouragement and advice; Dom's promise that Louis will thank him when he's famous; Vic and Ted saying he'll love it and to bring back presents, which I know means his art; his parents hoping he'll stay safe; Hugo's promise not to touch his stuff, which is huge given who Hugo is a person.
His grandmother is the most tearful, I can barely hear a word she's saying, but Louis nods along like he does understand. Lucy is last, she's standing in the middle, between their family and our friends, and she gets the longest hug of them all. She wouldn't have it any other way; they grew up together, will always be close, she'd be devastated if he hadn't. Jack's good bye is a handshake and a pat on the shoulder, because he'll consider Louis a traitor for being with Justin and Tyler even if they become best friends, but he smiles, so it's good enough. Luka surprises us all by hugging him first, he never hugs, then he pulls Kyle in as well. A group hug between best friends. They're like me and my friends; I don't think they'll have been apart for as long as Louis going away will force them to be - that just makes today worse.
When the female voice announces that the train will be leaving in a few minutes, Louis finally pulls away and walks back to me. His dad follows a few steps behind, ready to give him his bags. He takes my hands, threading his fingers between mine, and pulls me a little closer.
"I'm going to miss you," he says softly.
"I'll miss you, too," I swear to him. "But I'll see you soon. I can easily get to Paris, then there's Christmas. Time will fly."
"I know," he whispers, leaning in to kiss me. It's awkward at first, only because I feel like people are watching us, strangers being nosy, but I force it out of my mind and focus on Louis, just Louis, letting myself enjoy what will be the last time I kiss him for a while, until he moves back. "I love you."
"I love you."
"And I'm so glad you whacked me in the stomach with your stick that day," he laughs a little. "I'm pretty sure you used magic to make it hurt so much."
"Oh, magic was definitely involved somehow," I agree. "Given how... enchanting it was to meet you. You had to have done something to make me want to stick with you for as long as I have. Not many people can do that."
"More stubborn curiosity than magic, I think."
Louis lifts up his hands, using his thumb to take away the tear I feel falling. It doesn't help and a few more come, but at least they're not horribly uncontrollable sobs. I couldn't handle that.
"I won't stop loving you," he says quietly, just for me to hear. "Things happen, I won't pretend that everything will stay the same, but we'll wait and see. I'll come back and if we still love each other, then we'll know that this is it. That we can get through anything and we'll be together for the rest of our lives."
I only nod, not wanting to tell him that I refuse to believe things will change in case it results in an argument about it. An argument neither of us would apologize for quickly and will just make things harder, because he's stubborn and I'm constantly in denial. An argument I won't allow because he's right, things can change and things can come between us. One is already trying, whether Louis knows it or not.
"Louis," his dad calls him.
"You'll miss your train if you don't leave now," I warn. "I'm not going anywhere."
Louis nods, kisses me quickly and walks away. I watch him get on the platform and put his bags on the train. He still has a couple of minutes, but he disappears into the crowd, probably looking for a seat, and I turn around, ready to have the life squeezed out of me by one of Lucy's hugs, one I feel like I desperately need right now.
But Lucy stays exactly where she is, pointing towards the train. I manage to turn just as Louis is back at my side. This time his kiss is longer, more desperate than my need for a hug and more telling than any 'I love you'.
"I've changed my mind," he whispers breathlessly and for a slightly disapproving, slightly hopeful, moment I think he means going to Paris. "Screw wait and see, just wait for me."
"I was already going to," I promise.
Louis shakes his head. "Wait and see is just hoping things go back to normal afterwards. We won't be the same after this; we'll be older, we may even learn a few things. We'll be ready for more. Wait for me to come back, to marry me." My eyes widen and I'm sure I've misheard him, but he's smiling and continuing to speak like he hasn't even noticed my reaction. "It's you and me, Key. It always will be. We waited so long to get here, things were always getting in the way and stopping us, sometimes it was even because of us, but not anymore. Wait for school to be over, all of it, so I'm back for good. If things change between us three years from now, we'll know we have to move on. If things don't, we'll know that it's right and that we should be together. Wait and marry me, Ciaran."
Too shocked to speak, I just move my head. I think I nod, he definitely takes it as a nod, and kisses me one more time. I feel like I should be even more terrified now, for a completely different reason this time - I mean, who proposes after five months together? - but I'll admit that hearing the if's and the waits calm me and he seems too sincere for me to do anything but nod.
"I love you," he says again.
"Yeah," I manage to get out. "Love you."
"I'll see you soon. Good bye," he finally says to me.
He runs back to the train and the doors shut just as he steps inside. I move to stand close enough to see him go to the nearest empty window seat and he places his hand onto the window as a wave. I copy, still numb.
I don't move until the train pulls away and I've got my two best friends standing on either side of me.
"You've shocked my family," Lucy whispers in my ear.
"I think he's joined them," I hear Jack. "Did you really just get engaged?"
That one word, engaged, wakes me up a little, enough for me to speak at least. "I think so. Almost. Mum is going to kill me."
"You can hide in school," Lucy says, smiling. She wraps her arm around my waist and pulls me away from the station. "Congratulations, Ciaran. You're almost officially part of the Potter/Weasley family. Good luck to you."
"Sure," is all I say. My head keeps turning towards the now empty platform, keeps thinking of Louis' words, his promises... his impromptu almost proposal. There is only one thought that comforts me enough to let myself walk away with my friends and Louis' just-as-shocked-as-I-am family...
The good bye is not forever.
A/N: And that's it. Enchanted 1 is over. And Louis kinda left you with a bombshell of an ending. Now the question is: will they last in this long distance relationship? Enchanted 2, Don't Let Me Go, is coming soon.
Until then, I hope you'll enjoy my new Louis/OC, starring Frankie Pierce, which will be up before Don't Let Me Go.
I hope you've enjoyed reading Enchanted. Thank you so much for every review, the OC Dobby nominations and for following this story. Please let me know what you think. :)
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