Life’s Little Triumphs—Epilogue
a mini-series by Dot
The deck of the Falcon had nothing on it save the steering wheel, and plenty of standing room, making it perfect to hold a wedding there. And, at five hundred feet up, the already quite nervous groom was would be too occupied about the prevalent wind conditions to even think about getting cold feet.
Strago donned an old priest’s gown to perform the ceremony. When asked whether he had actual legal authority to marry the happy couple, Strago replied that His Royal Majesty Edgar Roni Figaro had, for this very occasion, granted him that authority. This revelation was a bit of a surprise to everyone, the bride in particular, but Edgar just shrugged and said that he was doing what he should. Besides, Locke had already asked Edgar to be the best man; what else could Edgar do besides give his blessing?
Relm, wearing a pink dress that she designed herself, didn’t look like the smart-mouthed squirt that she was two years ago. Gau, now a strapping young man of fifteen, and quite civilized now thanks to Cyan, turned a healthy shade of red when Relm passed by. Relm, to her secret delight and Strago’s not-so-secret dismay, noticed, and walked with her head a bit higher. She smiled at her father as she made her way to her designated place; Clyde returned the smile with his eyes, feeling his throat tighten a bit as he realized for the first time that his little girl was blossoming into a woman.
Terra, the maid of honor, was next, and it was Cyan’s turn to blush. Lucky for him, no one else noticed; he still lacked the courage to tell Terra how he felt about her face to face. If he knew that Terra had already half-guessed who her mysterious admirer was and planned to write a return letter, he might have died and gone to heaven right then and there.
Everything else was forgotten the moment Celes rose onto the deck with Cid at her side. To Locke, as well as the rest of the audience, she looked like an angel from heaven. Moving with the grace of a princess to the overture provided by Gogo at the organ, Celes almost floated to the altar, where she passed her bouquet to Relm, then took Locke’s trembling hand and knelt with him.
Strago smirked to himself. Kids. “Heaven smile upon us and on the two standing before this holy altar.” Walking around the altar to the two, he pulled them up. He waited for Gau to hand him the bright red cord before continuing. “Celes Chere, do you consent and pledge to be joined to this man?”
“Yes,” Celes replied, seeing no one but Locke.
Strago tied one end of the cord to Celes’ left pinky, then turned to Locke. “Locke Cole, do you consent and pledge to be joined to this woman?”
“Yes,” Locke answered, eyes never once wavering.
Tying the other end of the cord to Locke’s right pinky, Strago then brought the couples’ hands together again. “Then by my witness and the witness of these people, I affirm your oath. May you become bonded to one another as represented by this cord, may you raise children together, and may you grow old together.” This time, Strago smiled so everyone could see. “You may kiss.”
This time, Relm did not make any comment about the sudden inexplicable rise in ambient temperature, but she did turn her eyes away when the kiss lasted much longer than anyone anticipated. When it ended, everyone burst into enthusiastic applause except the happy couple, whose hands were rather occupied in holding each other.
– Epilogue –
Celes waited for Setzer to return to the deck with the drinks before closing her eyes and tossing her bouquet into the hair.
It landed perfectly into Terra’s arms, who was so startled by this that she almost dropped it.
“Congratulations!” Celes grinned. “So who’s the lucky guy?”
Terra couldn’t help looking embarrassed. Meanwhile, Setzer had already opened the first bottle of champagne and began distributing the drinks with Gogo’s help. Relm and Gau, being a bit too young for alcohol, opted to put soda into their glasses instead.
After the last drink was poured, Edgar raised his glass. “A toast, to the bride and bridegroom.”
“To Locke and Celes,” everyone echoed.
“Now, Edgar, Celes is officially ‘taken’,” Sabin reminded his brother with a grin. “You’d better not try to make any moves on her.”
“Of course I wouldn’t,” Edgar answered, pretending to be offended. Then he grinned as well. “I value my life more than that.”
“How’s your ‘very important mission’?” Celes asked Setzer, winking. The secret they shared had remained one by Setzer’s request, and Celes, true to her word, told no one else.
Setzer swirled his drink. “No luck so far, I’m afraid. There’s been a few leads here or there—” he shrugged. “But nothing substantial. It might be years before I find anything.”
Cyan clapped a hand on Setzer’s shoulder. “Worry not, Sir Setzer, thou can count on me to continue thy work.”
Setzer smiled. “Thanks, friend.”
– Epilogue –
“It must be exiting to travel the world and help so many people,” Relm began, trying to start a conversation with Gau.
Gau scratched the back of his head. “Not really. Gau always fall asleep when flying.” He chuckled, sheepish. “And sometime get sick.”
“Actually, so would I,” Relm confessed. “That’s why I was always walking around and looking out the window; the scenery helped keep me distracted.” She took in the fresh breeze. “Today’s a beautiful day, don’t you think?”
“Yeah,” Gau replied, although his eyes weren’t on the same thing that Relm’s were.
Meanwhile, Clyde intercepted a rather dangerous-looking Strago.
“Let me pass,” Strago all but growled.
“Worried about Relm?” Clyde guessed. “She’ll be fine.” He smirked. “Or are you jealous?”
“Nonsense!” Strago hmphed. He glanced over to where Relm and Gau were talking, and his expression grew desperate. “But look at them!”
“Don’t you think I know?” Clyde asked. “I’m not blind.” Strago tried to push past Clyde, but Clyde was firm. “Stop that, Strago. Relm’s having a wonderful time, and the last thing you should do is ruin it by embarrassing her.”
“But nothing.” Clyde grinned. “Don’t be such a fuddy-duddy.”
Strago could only stammer, mouth opening and closing like a fish.
– Epilogue –
Mog looked up to see Edgar waving at him. “Oh, hi, Edgar.”
Edgar went up to the moogle. “Why are you looking so down? Aren’t you happy for Celes?”
“Of course I am.” Mog sighed. “It’s just that I can’t help thinking that things are far from over.”
“That’s true,” Edgar agreed, “but you shouldn’t worry yourself to death about it.” He grinned. “It’ll make you bald.”
“Oh, let me go bald, then,” Mog snapped, a bit irritated. “It’s because you humans always forget the constant threat of danger that history repeats itself. Except next time, we might not be so lucky!”
“Mog, Mog, Mog!” Edgar chided. “Don’t tell me you think you’re the only one who’s ever thought of that, because that’s certainly how you’re acting.” He shook his head. “You don’t need to feel like you’re carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders. All of us—” he gestured towards the others, “are aware of how delicate this peace is. But today is not the day to think about that. Celes and Locke just got married, and they want to share their happiness with everyone. Even if it was just for their sake, even if it was just for today, couldn’t you enjoy yourself?”
“I—I suppose I could,” Mog answered slowly. He forced a smile. “Indeed, I should be participating in this joyous occasion, should I not?”
Edgar gave Mog a thumbs up. “That’s the spirit!” Then, with a wink, he added, “and if all else fails, you could always get very, very drunk.”
Mog watched Edgar leave. “If you knew what I knew.” He sighed. He still hadn’t found the appropriate moment to inform them of his discovery, but he knew he had to sooner or later. Preferably sooner, before something catastrophic happened.
But Edgar was right, for once. Today was a day of celebration, joy, and hope, and he wasn’t about to ruin it.
And besides, Mog never turned down an opportunity to dance.
“Make way for the master!” he exclaimed, pushing all of his cares out of the way for the moment.
Unnecessarily Long and Tiresome Authoress’ Notes: The marriage ritual Strago performed is a variation on the traditional Shinto wedding, with a few elements of the typical Christian ceremony thrown in. The red cord is from a Japanese myth (probably ultimately of Chinese origin) where an old woman ties destined lovers together with said cord by their pinkies.