The sun is beautiful today, shining brightly in the sky above me. The water ripples and laps against the shore, glistening from the rays of sunshine hitting it. The palm trees tower above me, waving in the warm breeze that's blowing across my face. I hope Verona likes my tux. I feel nervous even though I am happy as well. Life has been so much better since I left The Compound. No one berates me for being me, and my self-esteem has improved drastically.
Verona and I decided to get married at the beach because it holds significance for both of us. It's where I first saw her, and it's where we both went to look for each other after we had a big fight. Music starts playing, and I know it's time to start. Titanium and Joliana are walking towards me, arm in arm. Charles started dating Joliana after divorcing Verona's mom, and she's been a great influence in my life as well. She makes a good stepmother figure for Verona too, very supportive and loving.
I get tunnel vision when I see Verona and Charles walking down the aisle because Verona is so pretty in her dress. It's one of those old fashioned puffy dresses and she looks like a princess. I can't stop staring and I feel like my eyes are dry. Shit, did I forget to blink? Verona comes up to me, and Charles places her hand in mine.
"I know you'll be happy together. I love you both."
Charles takes a seat with Absolon and Victor, and the minister starts the wedding. I'm holding Verona's hand tightly and shaking a little bit. She squeezes my hand to reassure me and I calm down a little bit.
"Now the couple would like to share with each other their handwritten vows."
I take a piece of paper out of my tux pocket, unfold it, and try to read the words without crying.
"Verona, from the moment you stepped into my life, you began changing it for the better. I was so naive and sheltered, but you taught me so much. You opened my eyes and made me realize the world for what it really is, instead of the cold, dark place I once thought it to be. Your smile warms my heart and now that I've found you, I can't imagine my life without you. I am ecstatic that on this very special day, I will become your husband."
Verona's eyes fill to the brim with tears as she smiles at me. When she said we should write our own vows, I was pretty terrified at first, but as I sat down to write them, I found that the words came easy. I just wrote what I felt. Verona takes a minute to clear her throat and then she speaks.
"Camo, I have always been curious about you. You were so mysterious, but it wasn't because you were choosing to be. I found some of the things I learned about you to be strange, but I wanted to be the one to open your eyes to the wonderful life you could have. I knew I loved you when I felt like I was going to die from the thought of losing you. I'm so happy that you are choosing to share your life with me, and that I get to be your wife."
I squeeze Verona's hand and the minister calls for the best man to give us the rings.
"Camo, repeat after me. I, Camo, take you Verona, to be my lawfully wedded wife, to have and to hold from this day on, for richer or poorer, for better or worse, in sickness and health, till death do us part."
After I finish repeating the words all the way up until 'death do us part,' I put the diamond studded ring on Verona's finger, just above her engagement ring. I didn't get her the traditional gold band because I felt she deserved something more special than the standard.
"Verona, repeat after me. I, Verona, take you Camo, to be my lawfully wedded husband, to have and to hold from this day on, for richer or poorer, for better or worse, in sickness and health, till death do us part."
Verona puts the silver ring on my finger, and I look into her beautiful aqua blue eyes. Then the minister says the words I've been waiting for all day.
"I now pronounce you husband and wife. You may kiss the bride."
Cheers erupt from the audience as I kiss Verona deeply and passionately, taking her by a bit of a surprise. She recovers quickly however, and kisses me back with just as much force.
"Ladies and gentlemen, may I present to you, Mr. and Mrs. Camo and Verona Balestrom."
I have a last name now. It may seem like something that's so simple and normal to most, but because I was known only by a number until I was sixteen, it means something significant to me. Being able to share a last name with Verona is the icing on the cake, and I feel a deeper connection to her because of it. She means the world to me. Some guys would think it less masculine to take their wife's last name, but I wouldn't have it any other way.