Chapter 28

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Amber

I was ready to do this. I wanted this Bonding ceremony to proceed before anything else happened. Yesterday was really hard on me. Feeling those horrible emotions was difficult. Knowing they were directed at me was worse. But the result was worth it. I took away his hatred. I covered it with love. I took his agony over losing his wife and daughter and replaced it with contentment. He was a different man when we left. I knew Grayson was hesitant, but he did it for me, and that was powerful. He put others before himself. I loved him more than anything. I couldn't wait another moment to be his. Now I stood behind those same doors waiting to go stand beside the love of my life.

My dress was clean and as beautiful as before. The Center was still decorated, and all our friends were here. Jack stood with me. He wasn't going to leave my side this time. The music began, and we walked up the aisle. I locked eyes with Grayson. So much emotion was pouring out of him toward me. All his love and passion. "You are everything I could ever want and more." I blushed even though no one else could hear him. "You are my every hope and my every wish." I sent back.

Jack gave me to Grayson and kissed me on the cheek. The ceremony began. The Coordinator didn't stick to the usual script. He spoke about how much we had been through to be together today. He told everyone about the healing we did yesterday. He talked about the hope our people had because of the possibility of more children. He even told stories about my parents and the joy they had over the connection Grayson and I shared. I think most of the women, and even some of the men, were crying at that point. Emotions and hormones were high right now.

Grayson and I exchanged our vows. I didn't think more beautiful words had ever been spoken from a groom to a bride. But I was a little bias. The Coordinator talked about our Bond and what it meant. Then he told everyone how it was the strongest Bond anyone had ever seen. That we had a strength and integrity their people needed. That one day we would be the rulers of our people. I didn't know what to think of that. I looked around the room at friends and family, and all I saw was agreement, excitement, happiness. No one felt overlooked or jealous. Maybe this was what we were meant to do.

We continued to hold hands as Grayson's parents spoke about our love for each other. Grayson's quest to find me. His determination to not give up. Our ability to feel each other from so far away. They said how much they loved us and wanted the best for us. More tears escaped my eyes. We continued with the ring ceremony. His ring held a piece of my amber stone and mine had a piece of his. They were beautiful.

After hours of speaking, and all of the formalities, it was time to have the kiss that would seal our Bond. It was the highlight of the ceremony. The moment your lives were permanently joined. Most couples experienced some kind of surge in their connection. There would often be a spark as their lips touched. I had no idea what would happen to us. We had already had sparks and full on electrical surges. Our first kiss, not long ago, had caused me to pass out. I was actually a little hesitant to do this in front of all these people.

"You may kiss your Bonded Mate." The Coordinator told us. We looked at each other. Grayson let go of my hand and cupped my cheeks with his warm hands. "You are my Forever." He spoke in my mind. He leaned closer and his lips touched mine, gently and carefully. I felt the sparks, the tingling. My eyes were closed, but I could see that there was a bright light surrounding us. Grayson didn't stop the kiss, he intensified it. He put his passion and desire into it, as if no one else was in the room. I wasn't even embarrassed. I heard gasps from the audience, then applause. When we finally broke the kiss, I opened my eyes and saw a bright light surrounding us. It spun around us and then dissipated at the top of our heads. The clapping continued. Grayson took my hand and a spark of light was released there as well. All eyes were on us.

The audience was filled with surprise and excitement. I didn't know yet what it all meant, but every one seemed to think it was very significant. We walked back down the aisle, hand in hand, with beaming smiles. Grayson appeared to be glowing a bit still. I wondered if I was too. Then we got to the double mirrored doors and I could see that I was. We both were. My eyes were much more vibrant than they were hours ago. My hair was shinier. My cheeks were flushed. I actually thought I looked beautiful. "You most definitely do." He told me as we entered the back room and shut the door. We were alone now, finally. I looked more closely at Grayson. His hair was also shinier. His gray eyes almost appeared to be glowing with little flecks of gold. I put my hand up to his face to pull him to me for another kiss. His skin was so soft.

Our lips met. I felt the spark. He quickly deepened the kiss. He pulled me close against his hard chest. I could feel his heart beating quickly. As we kissed, I could feel everything about him. Not just his emotions, but what he was seeing in his mind. The way he saw me. It was like a movie replaying in his mind. The moment he saw me at school months ago. The way he felt when we sat on the rock together talking for the first time. It was like his thoughts and feelings were trying to catch up when I couldn't sense them. We continued kissing and holding each other while other moments replayed in our minds. Now he was seeing how attracted I was to him. How I couldn't help myself from looking at him and thinking about him. It was a little embarrassing for him to know all of this now. But at the same time, it was right. He needed to see every part of me.

We finally broke the connection. When we parted, it was like I lost something. I had to touch him again to get it back. He immediately took my hand and smiled. "I felt it too." I wanted to leave right then for our honeymoon. I couldn't get close enough to him. I didn't want to share him with everyone outside those doors. Did we really need a reception at all? Grayson laughed. I guess he could sense everything I was thinking, not just what I sent him on purpose. I concentrated on what he was thinking. They didn't come to me as words, but instead as a feeling. And I could tell exactly what he was feeling. I blushed, he did too. "I guess it works both ways." He said out loud. "Yeah, you are going to need to watch those thoughts if you don't want me in a constant state of embarrassment." I told him. "Get used to it. I don't think I can I have any power over my feelings for you." Then he opened the door and walked us out into the waiting party.

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