Chapter 1

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Michael couldn't help but sweep Darcy off her feet as he carried her out of the church, too focused on having just got married, on having finally got the one girl he had always wanted to even think about being calm and composed about what they had just done. She was his now and he wanted the world to know it...just after they had enjoyed some down time together, alone and entirely out of sight. And Darcy was perfectly happy with his evaluation of what their day should entail as she cradled her head into his neck with a contented sigh and allowed him to explain the details of their day while he crossed over to the car, using the key on his chain to activate the electronic locking system.

They still had to get their photographs taken, but the photographer hadn't yet shown up and so Michael decided to drop their bags in the car and then proceed on with their day, tempted to call the student to see if he was nearby or if they should just go elsewhere. He wasn't really an impatient man but he didn't want to hang around all day waiting for some college student, who was probably too busy partying to remember his promise to take their pictures, when he and Darcy could be taking advantage of the sunshine of the day and enjoying the special treat he had planned for them.

"So I think, if he doesn't show up, we'll just go on with our plans as normal and we'll stop off at the drug store, get one of those cheap disposable cameras or go back to the hotel for our own and we'll take our own damned photo's." Michael thought aloud, planting Darcy on her feet beside the car for just a moment while he placed their bags in the trunk and shut the door again, leaning back against it for the single use of a comfortable waiting space. And he couldn't help the smile that reached his lips as his beautiful new wife stepped forward into his arms, smiling and perfectly happy with her new role in life, allowing him to wrap his arms around her waist as she showed her approval of his plan. It was nothing more than a single, sweet kiss from her candyfloss flavoured lips but it meant more to Michael than anything. She was his wife now and he was always going to remember that as being their first real kiss outside of the church as a married couple, and he couldn't imagine it being any better until she held her arms over his shoulders and explained the thoughts inside her head.

"I never knew it was possible for anyone to be this happy." She smiled softly, doing nothing more than what she thought was explaining what was spinning around inside her head. But what she was doing to Michael, was driving him insane with the most incredible love she had made him feel so far in their seemingly short journey of just eight sweet days. That was how long they had been together, eight days, one day more than a week and it was astounding, absolutely mind-blowing for him to think about, but looking at her then and listening to her voice, he knew that he had already waited eight days too many to marry her. If he had found the strength within himself, if he had been entirely one hundred percent sure of her feelings for him on that first day, the second her friends and teachers had left his house, he would have taken her to the church or to the registry office and married her. He would have chartered a private jet and flown them to Las Vegas if it would have meant he would have been able to marry her and know that it wasn't for some power trip because he had lots of money. To just marry her and know that it wasn't so that she was his and no-one else's or that if she ever wanted to leave him, she wouldn't be able to because he 'owned' her, but if he had known it would have been for love, for love and only love, a two way emotion between them, then he would have had no hesitation over doing all that he could to marry her, right there and then on their first ever day together. "Michael..." Darcy giggled to herself when she realised he had drifted off into a dream, gently brushing his thumb over her lower lip as he stared at her intensely, as though unable to believe that she was really there with him. But she understood the feeling.

"I was just thinking about how long I've waited for you. To be married to you." He admitted with a light, one shouldered shrug which suggested it was much less of an important matter than it really was, but she listened to him anyway and allowed him to get whatever it was he was thinking off his chest. "I don't mean since we met...not really. Although I could have married you the first minute I saw you, all I would have needed was to hear you tell me you loved me as much as I loved you and that would have been it. I'd have done anything to make it happen. But it's more than that." Michael thought to himself, wrapped up in his confusing and yet strangely clear thoughts, which seemed so much more comprehensible and lucid than ever before. "I mean, going way back...maybe to when I was a teenager, younger than you even. I always wanted what my parents had, that instantly recognisable thing, were one look had it all and I knew...the second I saw you I knew that you were the one. I looked my entire life, waiting and thinking it would never happen and I promised myself I'd only marry for love, which meant that I knew I'd never get married until I found her...that one that made everything fall into place. And now here we are." He laughed quietly at the irony of it all. He had searched his entirely life and yet, what he was looking for he would never have found if it hadn't been for his fathers interfering nature and his desperate need to have grandchildren. Michael thought his father knew that he would never find the woman he wanted, at least without help, and he had tried to soften the blow so many times, promising that he'd back off if he managed to find her and she turned out to be unsuitable, even going ahead to make the appointment with Darcy's teachers on the single thought that if he could meet other girls and have an arranged marriage, he wouldn't be so disappointed when he realised his dream woman didn't exist. But how wrong he had been.

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