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"Life may get a little bitter before getting sweet." - Riley Monroe

(10 years later)

The little cafe, A Handful of Sugar, on Walnut Street is as busy as ever during the lunch hour that afternoon. Inside, a dark haired girl was running around taking orders while a handsome young man in the back prepares them. Everything in the cafe seemed to sparkle and shine. As if the young couple's love were radiating off the surfaces of the brown tables, chairs, and food.

If one were to peer in the neatly organized display cases, they would find finely decorated pastries and cakes. All of which would satisfy any sweet tooth. Above the display cases is a handwritten chalkboard menu filled with savory dishes.

The girl, Riley, is said to be in charge of the pastries while the man, Aaron, is in charge of the regular course menu. Customers were lining up at the cash register chattering happily as they paid. Despite the long line, no one seemed to mind because the food here was deemed one of the best in this small town. It is said that the young couple graduated from a top culinary institute and were the best in their class.

"Hey," The young man called out to the girl from the kitchen once the rush calmed down.

She turned her attention to him after helping out a customer. "Yes?"

But they were interrupted when a familiar crowd walked into the shop. The girl's eyes widened in surprise.

"You guys!" She exclaimed running up to hug the three men and three girls. "It's been a while, huh?"

The group of friends laughed and agreed.

"Way too long!" The blonde, Tammy, said smiling brightly.

The brunette, Cassidy, threw her hair over her shoulder. "You look great by the way!"

"I hope he's been treating you well?" The last girl, Raven, asked smiling.

Riley laughed. "Of course!" She turned towards the kitchen and shouted, "Look who's here!"

Then out walked Aaron with a wide smile. "I can't believe you guys actually came." He said walking up and throwing his arms over the guys.

Luke, Asher, and James chuckled. "Wouldn't miss it for the world."

Riley raised her eyebrows. "What is this about?"

Aaron cleared his throat as the men stood on his side and the girl's on the other.

He got down on one knee and took out a small black box. Riley covered her mouth and let out a gasp of surprise.

Aaron's gray eyes stared into her green ones. "Riley Monroe," He started. All eyes were on them now. Every customer was staring at the sweet scene.

"It all started when we were sixteen at Camp Sucre. And ever since, I haven't been able to get you out of my head. You're all I thought about. We have been through so much together over the past ten years. And I have to say, we've definitely had our ups and downs, not just with school, but with life in general. But if I were to go back and choose, I would still choose you as the person to go through all of that again."

Tears were forming in Riley's eyes. She could feel her heart beating rapidly.

"You're my best friend. No, not just my best friend. My girlfriend, my lover, and everything else in between. I have seen you at your worst times, and at your best. I love you for who you are, and I am prepared for everything that the future has in store for us. I don't know what else I want in my life right now, but I know that I for sure want you in it. I love you. So Riley, would you take a step towards the future with me?" He took in a deep breath and let it out. "Will you marry me, cupcake?"

She didn't know what to say. Tears were falling now. "Y-yes," Riley choked. "Of course, Aaron."

He slid the diamond ring onto her finger and enveloped her in a hug.

"I love you, Aaron," She whispered clutching his white chef's outfit. "I love you so much."

His laugh sent vibrations through her. "I would hope so," He looked into her eyes and wiped away her tears. "I mean, who couldn't?"

Riley laughed and smacked him on the chest playfully. "Just kiss me, you idiot."

And kiss they did.

Confetti rained down on the newly engaged couple as the room broke out in applause.

Riley could not stop smiling. She was engaged! She looked up at her boyfriend... no, her fiance and felt a fury of emotions blossoming in her chest. I love this man.

Aaron reached down and took her hand. They exchanged smiles and looked over to their friends. Luke, Asher, James, Cassidy, Tammy, and Cassidy were happily cheering for them.

"So, who's next?" Riley asked eyeing everyone in the group.


NEW Author's Note

For returning readers, I hope you enjoyed the revised version and revisiting the characters. For new readers, I hope the story was to your liking. Even though this is the epilogue, I will be posting extra stories once in a while so look forward to that. Once again, thank you so much for reading. <3

(Old) Author's Note

Okay so that's everything. I changed up the writing a bit in the epilogue, but I hope you all like it just the same. It was supposed to be about them meeting on the first day of school, but oh well. I like this much better. Again, thank you so much for reading and please vote/comment. <3

Want to read more of my books? There's still Coffee Shop Writings and Anomalous. c:

Thanks for reading!

~ Tiffany

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