Chapter 30 : The Madness of an Epilogue
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Which was difficult. It was much easier because, unlike muggles, we could see each other in a couple of seconds due to our ability to apparate. However, because of the time difference, one of us would sometimes pop in when the other one was sleeping.
But we did it. For a year and a half, Al and I would apparate, write, and visit each other as much as we could. It was exhausting and annoying, but we made it work. I knew that we both hated it and that at some point, one of us would probably need to move so that we could actually give this thing a go, but Al never asked me to move. He knew how much I loved San Francisco and my job, so despite the fact that he wanted me with him, he never asked me to leave here. He talked about possibly moving out here but I knew that he was going to miss his family too much. Unlike me, Al had issues leaving his family since he had always had one or more members of his family living with or near him at the time. And I couldn't ask him to do that. I loved him too much.
So I moved. Not just for him, but because I had been missing my family and England. But I also did want to give my relationship with Al a real try. So I had been applying for jobs out there and when I finally got a job as lead potion brewer at an apothecary in Diagon Alley, I took it and told everyone I was moving back.
To say the least, everyone was thrilled. Caleb wasn't, because he would miss me being his roommate, but I told him that I promised to visit. Mum and Brian had been traveling a lot so they weren't too upset to hear about my departure, since they were barely in San Francisco anyway. But as for the rest of my family, they were thrilled. Ellory was now 21 and living in Ireland and working with the bank there while Jacob was now 14 and a (very proud) Hufflepuff. That was one of the most difficult parts of living in the States was not getting to see them as much as I wanted.
But once I moved back, everything changed.
And thankfully, it was for the better too.
"Is that tight enough?" Rose asked as she pulled the strings of my dress.
"I think so," I said, letting go of my dress to test to see if it fell down.
It didn't. In fact, it stayed perfectly in place.
"Okay," Rose said, taking a step back and placing a hand on her very large belly. "I'm going to go wait in the other room and then you can make your grand entrance to us."
"Alright," I said. I watched her waddle into the next room, giving me a minute to myself.
I took a deep breath and looked into the mirror at my reflection.
I was nearly in shock at what stood back at me. My curly hair was tucked into a neat updo with a tiara resting on top of my head. My make up was done perfectly, making my blue eyes stand out.
But it was the dress that really brought the whole thing together. The white dress that I had picked out nearly a year ago, that was strapless with a poofy skirt, a typical fairytale dress. The dress is what made everything come together in my head and make me realize what was about to happen.
I was about to get married. In the backyard of the Malfoy Manor, a place that I had played and rode a broom, I was going to get married.
Holy fucking shit.
"Oi!" Alice said, banging on the door. "I know it's your day and all, but we're going to be running late if you don't get out here soon!"
"I'm coming!" I said. I opened the door and walked out. "Here I am."
"Wow," Alice said, walking up to me and touching my dress. "You look beautiful. This dress is amazing."
"Do you wish you had a real wedding now?" Rose asked her.
"Nope," Alice said. "Will and I were more than happy with our spur of the moment ceremony in Paris."
"I understand that now," I said. "Better than doing a year and a half of planning."
"Hey," Alice said. "I planned majority of your wedding since you and your lovely fiancée were both too busy working. So you better love it."
"Alice you cleared all the details with me before you did anything," I said. "Trust me, I love it already."
"Hate to break up the girl talk," Dad said, coming around the corner. "But a wedding is supposed to happen now." He kissed my head. "You look beautiful, Addison."
"Thanks Dad," I said.
"Ellory and Becca can't wait to see you," Dad said. "And your mother, Merlin, I thought that she'd barge back here herself, if you didn't come out soon. Fortunately Brian was holding her down."
"God bless that man," I said. Alice and Rose were walking in front of us, stopping when they reached the doors that would lead us outside.
The music started playing and Alice walked out the door, her short blue bridesmaid dress flowing slightly in the breeze.
"You sure you're ready to do this?" Dad asked. "You're only 28, you know."
Rose gave me a big smile before walking through the doors that had opened for her.
I looped my arm with Dad's as we walked to the front of the closed doors.
"Yeah," I said, a smile on my face as the doors began to open. "I'm ready."
The doors opened and I was glad to see that all of Alice's hard work did not go to waste. There was a beautiful arch at the end of the aisle, covered in the white roses that I had chosen. The white chairs had little blue accents on them. My eyes wandered, looking at all the familiar faces smiling back at me as I walked and I felt Dad squeeze my hand. I saw that Astoria and Mum were both on the verge of tears, holding one another's hand. Rose was crying as well, whereas Alice just stood next to her with a huge smile on her face. I made eye contact with Scorpius who looked like he had never been more proud and James, who smiled at me, before looking next to him.
And next to him was Al. Al had been looking at the ground until James poked him in the side. Al gave an annoyed look at James before turning his gaze toward me. His eyes went from being slightly annoyed at his brother to being completely amazed like he couldn't believe what was happening.
That's when I started to cry. Not straight up sobbing, but I felt the tears come to my eyes and I gripped Dad's arm tighter, needing something to stabilize me from this intense wave of emotions.
I was getting married. I was getting married to the love of my life and my best friend. And I couldn't have been happier.
When we made it to the end of the aisle, Al walked over to us and stood next to Dad.
"Who gives away this woman?" Louis, who was acting as our preacher, asked.
"Her mother, her aunt, her uncle, her brother, her sister, her cousin, her step-mother, her step-father, and I do," Dad said. "I think that was everyone."
I cracked a smile at that.
Dad kissed me on the head before taking my arm and interlocking it with Al's.
"Hey," I said, trying to hold back my tears.
"Hi," Al said back, smiling at me. "You look beautiful."
"Now if the bride and groom are done staring at each other," Louis said with a smirk. "We can begin."
Al and I walked forward and I handed my bouquet to Rose before turning back to face Al and joining my hands with his.
"Hello everyone," Louis said. "As most of you know, I am Louis Weasley and I have been blessed with the task of officiating this ceremony since I wasn't put into the bridal party." This earned another round of laughs, including ones from me and Al. "But I'm okay with that. Because I couldn't think of a better job than marrying two of my best friends. I met Al when I was about 2 days old. I don't remember much of the experience, but obviously we got along quite well since we've been best friends for the past 28 years. And then, when I was 11 years old, I met this girl named Addison Malfoy because she was yelling at my cousin Al and then became best friends with my other cousin Rose Weasley. And despite the fact that all Addie and Al would do is argue, somehow, the two of them, plus me, Scorpius, Rose, and Alice became a friend group. And until our sixth year, Addie hated Al's guts, while Al was madly in love with her. Don't get me wrong, he tried to get over her, dated around, but at the end of the day, he never could. And then one day, Al realizes that maybe arguing with her isn't the best way to win Addie's heart. So they become friends. And slowly, I noticed a change. I always knew that Addie and Al would make a good couple, but I never thought it would happen because Al wouldn't realize that pissing her off was having the opposite effect of what he wanted. But fortunately he did. And I got to see Addie's opinion change. And I have to say, seeing these two fall in love has got to be one of the best things I've ever seen. Because it wasn't easy. They're both stubborn and make really rash decisions and can barely stand each other half the time and they are both two of the most quick tempered people I've ever met. They fought a lot, more than I've ever seen two people fight. They're so similar that it shouldn't work, but are different enough that it does. So, it is my honor, to marry them. Would it be awesome to be a best man or groomsmen? Yeah. But there can be so many of those. There's only on person who can marry them and I could not be happier that I was that person."
I looked up Lou, tears in my eyes. "Goddamnit, you made me cry even more."
"Well just wait then," Louis said back. "Because you're going to be sobbing after this." He looked back towards the crowd. "I've been surrounded by great love stories my entire life. Al's parents and my uncle and aunt, met when Ginny was only 11 years old and she had a huge crush on him her entire time at Hogwarts before they finally got together. Ron and Hermione Weasley were best friends before they started dating. And my own parents, Bill and Fleur Weasley, fell in love quickly, yet proved their love was real after my father had gotten attacked by a werewolf. But Addie and Al's was a different sort of love story. It was one that everyone saw coming, but no one was really sure was ever going to happen. And when it did, I don't think anyone expected it to result in a marriage. I know that I certainly didn't. But it did and nothing in the world seems to make more sense. And I hope one day, I will find someone who drives me crazy and pisses me off but who I love more than anything else, just like the two of you found each other."
Louis was right. I was sobbing.
The reception was quite the fun time. It was still outside, in another part of the backyard.
"Now, if you would all clear the dance floor," Draco's announced. "I believe that my daughter and her new husband would like to have their first dance as man and wife."
Al lead me out to the dance floor and I wrapped my arms around his neck.
"We're married," I said, resting my head on his shoulder. "Who would have thought that would happen?"
"Not me," Al said. "I figured I'd marry some hot chick."
"Well, you did," I said.
Al shrugged. "I guess."
"Albus, I'm going to punch you in the gut so hard right now if you don't take that back."
"Fine, you're hot," Al said, pulling me closer to him. "You're the hottest wife I could have asked for and I could not be luckier than to spend the rest of my life with you."
"That's more like it," I said, leaning up and kissing him, which was responded with a large cheer from our family and friends.
I felt Al smile against my lips before pulling away. "It's probably best to not snog on the dance floor. I would rather not scare Scorp and Rose's unborn child."
"Eh, he has Scorpius and Rose as parents," I said. "Theirs no way in hell that they aren't going to be snogging when they drop the kid off at Platform 9 and 3/4."
"Let's never do that to our children," Al said.
I raised my eyebrow. "You assume that we're going to have children?"
"Well since you said you wanted 4, yeah I assumed those 4 would be with me," Al said, smirking.
"Actually, they're going to be my love children with Fred," I said teasingly.
"You are never going to let me forget that you two hooked up in sixth year are you?"
"I don't know are you going to let me forget that I dated Caleb?"
"Oh come on, Caleb isn't as bad as Fred."
"He's like my brother now!" I said. "Now whenever I think of how we dated I think about how it just feels like incest."
"That'll be a great story to tell the kids," Al said. "How you dated your brother and hooked up with my cousin while I just sat there doing nothing wrong."
"Thank Merlin this song is over," I said pulling my arms back to my side. "I don't know how much more of you I can take."
AL grabbed my wrist and pulled me towards him, kissing me. "You get an eternity of this, Malfoy."
"Actually, it's Potter now," I said, leaning in for another kiss.
"Oi, quit snogging!" James yelled at us. "I'd rather not have my daughter see that! Save it for after the wedding!"
"You'd know all about saving it for after the wedding, wouldn't you James?" Al said, smirking at James and the 4 year old girl sleeping on James's shoulder.
"Whatever we do," I said, pulling Al's attention back to me. "Let's not be like James and Annalise and have three kids in three years okay?"
"You don't have to ask me twice."
The reception, to say the least, was a total hit. People were constantly dancing, and all the kids (there were many of them at this point) eventually just passed out on the dance floor, causing their parents to groan as they picked them up and put them inside.
I was having a great time myself, but snuck away for just a little bit of alone time.
I went over to a tree that I sat under when I was little and leaned against it, looking up at the stars.
"I'm married," I whispered to myself with a smile.
"Addison?" I heard a voice say, followed by footsteps. I looked in the direction and saw Matilda come into view. "Addison are you out here?"
"Over here Mum," I said, waving. She squinted, straining her eyes to find me in the dark, before coming over and leaning next to me on the tree.
"Quite the party going on there," Mum said. "You planned a great wedding."
"I can't take credit for it," I said. "It was really all Alice and Astoria."
"Is Alice a professional event planner?"
"Nope," I said. "She's a writer. But both Al and I were super busy and she just got back from her book tour, so she offered to plan it with Astoria."
"Well she should consider adding event planner to her resume," Mum said. "Because this is amazing."
"I'll let her know."
"Astoria is so proud of you, you know that?" Mum said. "She can't help but smile every time she looks at you. Before the wedding, I caught her looking at your pictures from growing up and crying. So naturally I joined in and started crying as well." I smiled. "Everyone is so proud of you, Addie."
"I don't know why," I said. "I haven't done anything amazing, or anything."
"But you followed your heart," Mum said. "And you were true to yourself. That's all any parents can hope for their child." She reached out and straightened a piece of my dress. "You look so beautiful. Astoria was right about the princess gown." She let a piece fall. "Anyway, I just wanted to tell you that Brian and I are about to head back to our hotel. We have to go back to San Francisco tomorrow."
"Alright," I said, reaching out to hug her.
She held me tight and I could hear the tears in her voice. "I really am so proud of you, Addison. You are everything that I am not and I couldn't be happier." I buried my head in her shoulder, an action that I did with her before she left and hadn't done since I was 4. "Come and visit me and Brian. We'd be more than happy to have you and Al stay with us."
"Okay," I said softly.
She kissed my head. "I love you. Promise to write?"
"Promise," I said, letting go. "I love you too."
Matilda smiled at me. "I'll see you soon, Addison."
"Bye Mum," I said, leaning back against the tree as she walked away.
I looked up and saw Al coming towards me.
"Hi," I said. "Mum just left."
"Yeah, I saw her as I was walking over here," he said. He stopped in front of me, wrapping his arms around my waist to pull me in for a hug. "You okay?"
I nodded against his shoulder.
"She's not going anywhere," AL said softly. "She's coming back, you know. She's been in your life for 11 years and she's not going to leave again."
"I know," I said, lifting my head up to look at him in the eyes. In those beautiful eyes that had become my home, my safety. By letting myself fall for him, I had realized that while I was giving him the power to hurt me, I was also giving him the power to become more of a safety net than anyone else had ever been before.
"And even if she does, I'll be here," Al said. "No matter who leaves or what one of us do or how mad I get, I'm always going to be here."
I nodded and the parts of James and Annalise's vows that made me realize where Al and I went wrong played over again in my head.
I will never stop fighting for you.
I will never let you go.
"Same," I said, leaning my forehead against his. "I love you a bit too much for that."
Al smiled and kissed me softly. "You ready to go start the rest of our lives together?"
I nodded. "Absolutely."
And I was. As Al and I walked back to the reception with his arm around my shoulders and my arm around his waist, I knew that I was ready to spend the rest of my life with Al.
The good, the bad, the ugly, the confusing, I was ready for it all.
Because as long as I had Al, my friends and family by my side, I knew that I could take on the madness that was my life.
A/N: Well, there it is. The last chapter of Madness. This story has taken up the past two years of my life and it is finally over. This story is my first, full length story, and I have finished it.
My baby is done.
Thank you to everyone who has read it and reviewed it, because it has been amazing. This story has made me realize how much I love writing and that I'm not half bad at it. It has been my escape and I have been able to meet people who I never would have met otherwise. Thank you for all your amazing support and love not just for this story, but for me as well. There are quite a few of you where every time I post a new chapter, I can't wait to see what you think about it. Thank you. Thank you for this amazing experience with these amazing characters. Thank you for helping me see things that I never saw in my stories. Thank you for allowing me to write a story that sometimes pissed you off and had so many ups and downs. Thank you for always accepting this story exactly as it was, grammatical errors and all. Thank you for things that I cannot name right now because I am so overwhelmed with emotions right now because I had just finished this story and realized how grateful I am for you guys. So thank you. Thank you so much for allowing me to tell a story and letting me play with characters. This was my first story that I actually pursued writing and I could not be any happier with the response. I never expected it to break 500 reviews, get nominated for a Dobby and get favorited so many times.
Thank you. Just thank you for making this experience wonderful. Thank you so, so, so much.