Chapter Seventeen-I Do


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Chapter Seventeen-I Do

  1. 1. “What if I told you it was all meant to be. Would you believe me, would you agree? It’s almost that feeling we met before. So tell me that you don't think I'm crazy when I tell you love has come here and now...” A moment like this-Leona Lewis Previously on Unforgettable…. Victoria returned to Statham Island. It was an emotional and dramatic countdown leading to Dean & Kendra‟s nuptials. Jade escaped. Storm and Victoria found out they are pregnant. Dean and Kendra‟s fairytale wedding went off without any hiccups. Storm and Victoria decided, on the spur of the moment, to get married in two weeks.
  2. 2. This chapter…. It is the wedding we have all been waiting for with bated breath. Statham Island‟s number one couple is supposed to tie the knot today. Will they get to stand in front of their friends and family and say “I do” or will all hell break loose? Find out in Chapter Seventeen of Unforgettable titled “I do”.
  3. 3. Somewhere in Statham Island- Storm’s penthouse Victoria rolled over on her side of the bed and reached for the only man in the world who moved her in ways she could never have imagined. She sighed sadly as she thought of the night before. He came home for dinner, but then he was suddenly called back to the office on a high profile case and he never came back to put her and baby off to sleep.
  4. 4. He called from the office to say he would not be back until the morning. Of course, he had not left her alone and vulnerable. The private security detail he had hired after Jade‟s escape from Statham Island‟s federal prison was still parked outside the penthouse 24/7. At first, she found it irksome to have people tailing her the whole day wherever she went, but now she hardly noticed the dark SUV.
  5. 5. Somewhere in Statham Island- Dean & Kendra’s place “So this is it huh?” Drake asked seriously when Storm got off the phone with the florist. They were having breakfast, but Storm felt too happy to even think about eating. None of them, not Victoria‟s friends or Dean and his cousins, believed it was finally happening.
  6. 6. “Yep, this is it. I‟m getting married to the most beautiful woman in the world in a few hours,” Storm replied gleefully, smiling up at Dean and his cousins. After almost a year of not getting it right they were finally getting their happy ending. No two people in the world deserved it more than they did. It brought tears to his eyes to think about all the obstacles and heartache they had had to go through just to get to this point.
  7. 7. Her stomach growled loudly, reminding her she was eating for two now and the baby was hungry. It was a Saturday which meant Edward, Storm‟s butler, was off duty so there would be no breakfast in bed for her and she had to fend for herself. She quickly made the bed and padded softly downstairs to raid the fridge. Since finding out they were pregnant, she stuffed her face shamelessly and miraculously the morning sickness had stopped. A small smile flickered on her lips as she thought of the past two weeks with Storm. If she had known how good things would be between them, she would have skipped all the drama they had gone through and gotten to this part much sooner. She loved him very much and she could not imagine her life without him.
  8. 8. “Are you sure it‟s going to work? What if she refuses to come with me?” Dean asked again, not bothering to look up from the computer screen in his minimalist, yet expensively furnished home office. He was checking an urgent e-mail from a prospective investor. Dean successfully oversaw the running of Chace Industries, a fleet of companies ranging from real estate to oil and mining; the very same companies responsible for the Chace heirs being two of the youngest and richest males in Statham Island. Storm, on the other hand, had no interest in his family‟s businesses, which was why he hardly used his money or family influence to get what he wanted. To say he was rich was an understatement, but he hardly showed off his wealth. His penthouse was luxurious and was pricey when he had bought it, his car was a little on the flashy side, but that was where all the shiny things in his life ended. He was the total opposite of Dean. But then again, Dean worked hard to keep the Chace Empire on the fortune 500 list, so why the hell should he not live a flashy lifestyle?
  9. 9. To say his older brother‟s wedding was at short notice was an understatement, and the fact that Victoria did not even know she was getting married made it all the more surreal. “Trust you to dream up such a crazy scheme,” Dean thought anxiously, but did not voice his concerns. “Trust me on this, it will work. She‟ll come with you. The note with the flowers explains everything. You just have to walk her down the aisle, that‟s all,” Storm assured him as he left Dean to call the love of his life.
  10. 10. “Surprise!” was the effusive greeting from her friends when Victoria walked into the kitchen to get something to eat. “Whoa! What‟s going on? What are you all doing here so early?” Victoria asked astounded.
  11. 11. “You‟re getting married . . . today!” Kendra announced excitedly. Victoria‟s best friends all thought it was so romantic of Storm to plan a surprise wedding for Victoria. Of course he had not been successful in securing a venue in Twikki Island at such short notice, but Victoria would still have her dream outdoor wedding, in a secret location just outside of Statham Island. “No way…what? What do you mean I‟m getting married? Today?” Victoria asked, her mind reeling in thousand directions. She did not hear the door bell ring or notice Cassie leave the room to get it.
  12. 12. “Flowers for the bride” Cassie drawled when she waltzed back into the room a minute later. She set down the delicate arrangement of Miltonias on the dining table and handed the note to Victoria.
  13. 13. “It’s official! I know it’s at short notice, but I just couldn’t wait until after the baby was born, please do me the honor of marrying me today…I love you more than life and I’ll be waiting!” She was stunned. Tears sprung in her eyes as she read the note from Storm. She was touched that he had remembered that Miltonias were her favorite flowers. How? When? What was she going to wear? In panic mode she turned to find three pairs of eyes on her.
  14. 14. “Don‟t worry, that‟s why we‟re all here!” Daniella assured her reading the panic in her eyes, “But…the dress…my hair…..where‟s the wedding? When?” She asked over and over again.
  15. 15. “Hey, relax. It‟s all taken care of. Storm swore us to secrecy, but we were all hard at work since just after Kendra‟s wedding. Of course yesterday‟s shopping and pampering spree was no coincidence. We‟ve been back in town since Monday already,” Cassie filled in the blanks for her.
  16. 16. “Come, young lady. Let‟s get you ready. Dean will be here at 14:00 pm to pick you up, and he‟ll be walking you down the aisle. We told Storm how you always wanted your dad to walk you down the aisle. Well he‟s not your dad, but he‟s the closest thing you have to a big brother and he‟s so excited!” Kendra informed her, her big beautiful eyes dancing with happiness. She truly was happy for her best friend.
  17. 17. Victoria was on the vanity station in the guest bedroom and Cassie had just finished putting on the last hairpin on her upswept hair when her cell phone rang. She knew from the ring tone it was Storm. Her heart rate quickened and she felt butterflies in her tummy. “Give me!” She demanded of Kendra, eagerly holding out her hand for her cell phone.
  18. 18. “Will you?” were the first words Storm murmured when he heard her sweet voice and it caused exhilarating sparks to shoot throughout his body.
  19. 19. “In a heartbeat,” She sighed and closed her eyes when she heard him smile through the phone. “How? Why didn‟t you tell me? All those times you were away you were planning this?” She asked hysterically.
  20. 20. “Sweetheart, calm down. We‟ll talk later…” His voice sent thrills down her spine. “Do you like the flowers?” “I love them,” she whispered, wishing she could fast forward time, “they are beautiful.” “Not as beautiful as you though,” Storm murmured softly, “I love you, Victoria, and you‟ve made me the happiest man in the world. See you in a few hours, Mrs. Chace!”
  21. 21. “You look---beautiful,” Dean complimented her when he walked into the living room and found Victoria already dressed, but in a panic state at exactly 14:00pm. “Really? Are you sure? I don‟t look fat? Oh my gosh….what am I doing? I can‟t do this,” She cried, her voice rising shrilly.
  22. 22. “You can! You and Storm have fought so hard to get here. You look perfect,” Dean assured her and gave her a quick bear hug. “Now, stop crying. My brother‟s waiting. He loves you more than life Victoria!” “You‟re right, Dean. I can do this,” She reaffirmed, panic, doubt and anxiety suddenly gone. With a wicked smile she murmured, “I‟m driving!” and almost gave Dean a heart attack. “No way! Storm will kill me. I‟m driving you there,” he insisted, all the while following her outside to his flashy Lamborghini.
  23. 23. “He doesn‟t have to find out,” Victoria informed him coolly as she settled behind the wheel, “come on, and let me have my last thrill, you know, as a single girl? Please?” “Fine…you win, but not a word of this to Storm,” Dean relented and said a silent prayer as he put on his seat belt.
  24. 24. “Relax, we‟ll be there in no time,” Victoria smiled up at him. Dean had no doubt in his mind they would be at the venue in no time. He had heard from Kendra just what a maniac Victoria could be on the road, especially with super fast cars. He just hoped they both got to the venue in one piece. Her eyes widened comically when she realized she had no idea of where they were supposed to be headed, “remind me again where we‟re going?” She asked sheepishly.
  25. 25. Sandy Bay Marina - just outside of Statham Island SS Maelstrum The SS Maelstrum or the Love Boat, as Drake, its owner, affectionately referred to it, looked every bit of the luxury yacht it was. It boasted of a state of the art kitchen, a high tech entertainment living room, a spacious dining area, a fully stocked bar, three bedrooms, two bathrooms, indoor swimming pool and a home gym. It was the perfect home away from home. Drake, Statham Island‟s bestselling sci-fi author, spent months on the Love Boat finishing off whatever book he was working on. But this past year he had taken a sabbatical and the Love Boat had seen less of him.
  26. 26. The wedding ceremony would be held on the top deck and the reception on the lower deck.
  27. 27. “You look handsome,” Kendra assured the groom one last time as the prelude music began and the guests drifted in. There were less than fifteen people in total if you counted Victoria‟s best friends, Storm‟s brother and cousins, the BAU team, the pianist, the bartender and Pastor James. It would be a small and intimate ceremony, just as Victoria had wanted it.
  28. 28. “Thanks for everything Kendra, without you I‟m sure I would have messed up everything,” Storm thanked her sincerely. She really was not such a spoilt and snobbish brat after all. “You‟re welcome. Now, go up there and wait for your beautiful bride. She should be here any minute now,” his sister-in-law smiled up at him and pushed him gently towards the altar, following closely on his heels to take her seat on Victoria‟s side.
  29. 29. At the altar, the groom quickly glanced at his cousins, Hugo and Drake, Victoria‟s three best friends, and his team. They were all his family and he would not have had his wedding day any other way. These were the people who knew and appreciated his tumultuous history with Victoria, and it was fitting that they should all be present to celebrate the beginning of a new chapter in their relationship.
  30. 30. The guests heard the screeching tyres of Dean‟s Lamborghini, they smelt burning rubber, heard the low purr of the car‟s engine die out, and they knew the bride had arrived. They all stood up and turned to watch Victoria and Dean make their entrance as the pianist played the instrumental version of Beyonce‟s „Ave Maria‟
  31. 31. Time stopped, the light wind suddenly died down, and the ocean was still. The only two sounds Storm heard were their hearts beating-his and Victoria‟s. The wedding guests faded away and nothing mattered except the two of them.
  32. 32. She looked like a dream as she stood at the start of the aisle with his brother firmly grasping her arm in his. All the months of grief, sadness, heartache, fear and frustration did not matter anymore. All they could see was their bright future, a life abundant with love, trust, and happiness. In that instant, they felt the invisible circle close and they knew a journey to a love that‟s Unforgettable was complete. They were both home, in each other‟s hearts, and now they only had an Unforgettable life together to look forward to.
  33. 33. Dean‟s voice sounded so far away, but somehow she heard him, “Victoria, let‟s get moving before the song dies out. You‟ve been staring at each other for a good two minutes and everyone‟s getting nervous.” “Okay…let‟s do this,” She stammered with her big smile still on her face. Slowly they walked down the aisle all the while Victoria took everything in, the décor, her guests, her best friend and finally THE MAN waiting for her at the altar. This was the moment she had waited for, dreamed of, hoped for, cried about, and wished for all her life, and it was finally happening…but too slowly.
  34. 34. Without thinking, she snatched her arm out of Dean‟s tight enclosure and ran the rest of way to meet her soul mate. Storm, saw the change in her demeanor as she pulled away from his brother‟s firm grasp and instinctively, thinking perhaps she felt sick and was about to faint, ran from the altar to meet her halfway through the aisle. He smiled with relief when they stood opposite each other and she sighed, “The song was just too slow…”
  35. 35. “And you just couldn‟t wait could you?” he drawled, gazing deep into the blueness of her eyes. “No, I couldn‟t,” she replied, and turning to Dean and making the rest of their guests burst into laughter, she teased him, “you walk like a blushing bride!”
  36. 36. Pastor James‟ baritone voice rang clear as he opened the ceremony with his welcoming words, “Friends, we have been invited here to share with Victoria and Storm a very important moment in their lives. In the year they have been together, their love and understanding of each other has grown and matured, and now they have decided to live their lives together as husband and wife.”
  37. 37. The minister turned to the guests and asked, “Who supports this couple in marriage?” “We do,” Kendra and Dean murmured in unison as they both stood up and came forward to stand beside the bride and groom. “Thank you, you may be seated,” Pastor James informed them.
  38. 38. Turning to Victoria and Storm, Pastor James continued seriously, “For our definition of marriage, let‟s all turn to Ruth 1: 16-17. „But Ruth replied, "Don't urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God. Where you die I will die, and there I will be buried. May the LORD deal with me, be it ever so severely, if anything but death separates you and me.‟”
  39. 39. “Marriage is a solemn commitment you‟re making to each other today in front of all your friends and family. You‟re no longer two separate entities but you are one now. You have a responsibility to always make each other happy, trust each other, be honest with each other, love each other unconditionally but most importantly have faith in each other. Faith will see you through the many obstacles you will encounter in your marriage. Let faith be the guide in your marriage and your life together!”
  40. 40. Victoria and Storm knew they were the poster couple for faith. They had endured many obstacles, misunderstandings, heartache, and sadness. But they always had faith in their love for each other and faith was what had kept them going for months when they were apart, and it was what led them back to each other over and over again.
  41. 41. He looked into Victoria‟s eyes now and he was humbled by the love he saw there. He was sad it had taken them this long to get to this point, but he was also very glad they had gone through all the bad stuff first. From here onwards, and as soon as Jade was found and locked up or killed (whichever one occurred first) his life with Victoria could only get better. Pastor James startled him out of his daze and he smiled at his bride when he realized it was time for their wedding vows.
  42. 42. “Because this was a surprise for the bride, the couple has not prepared any wedding vows and neither will they recite the traditional ones. Instead, they‟ll speak from their hearts,” Pastor James informed the wedding guests. “Now, let‟s allow Storm and Victoria‟s hearts to speak for them,” Pastor James smiled at the bride and groom, handing the reigns over to them.
  43. 43. For a long time neither one of them could say anything. They both wanted to say something, but what they felt for each other was so powerful and so intense that words failed them. No amount of words could ever capture what each meant to the other. So, in that moment, their lips met in a long and lingering kiss, startling Pastor James and the wedding guests for the second time that day. They truly had no concept of what a wedding program was!
  44. 44. “I love you so much,” Storm cried against the corner of her mouth, his own lips quivering with emotion. He had never felt so profoundly about anyone or anything in his life and every time he thought he had a hold on his emotions, something shifted inside him and made him realize anew just how pure and profound his love for Victoria was. “I love you more and I want to be with you forever,” Victoria too, cried softly and unashamedly let the tears fall from her eyes. It took a lot of control in Storm to push her gently from him and face their wedding guests.
  45. 45. “We‟re ready now,” He gave everyone a tearful smile and turning to his bride, he gently stroked her cheek and choked out the emotions that had haunted him since the first time he met her.
  46. 46. “For two years, I walked around feeling incomplete and alone. And for two years I was fine with that. It didn’t bother me at all then and it got to a point where it was my safety blanket. But when I met you in that bathroom, you looked lost and confused and something inside me stirred. I felt like I was finally waking up after years of being asleep…like my life was just beginning. I felt complete…as though all the loose and frayed edges in my life were pieced together again. And then you left the room and I felt myself literally disintegrate.
  47. 47. “I didn’t understand it then, but over the next few months I saw how every time you were not around I felt myself literally break into thousand pieces, and every time you were in the room with me, I felt utter fulfillment and completion. It took me a long time to make sense of everything, but I finally did. It’s you Victoria. It’s always been you. You are the thread that holds me together!
  48. 48. “So in front of all our friends and family, I promise to love and to protect you, to honor and cherish you, to always put your needs above my own, and to always make you happy for eternity and beyond. I love you, always!”
  49. 49. There was not a single dry-eyed face on the deck when Storm finally finished his wedding vows. Everyone, including the pianist who did not know the couple personally, was awed by the love he felt for his bride. Drake wondered if he would ever feel so profoundly about anyone. Daniella hoped she would not! Hugo knew he was on the way there with Cassie. She, on the other hand, knew what she felt for Hugo was strong, but she could not compare it to Victoria and Storm‟s unforgettable love. Everyone turned their attention back to the couple at the altar when Victoria started her impromptu vows, but choked out loud sobs instead.
  50. 50. “I---loved you from the moment I saw you. I knew it instantly, because Kendra had told me just hours before that I would know when I finally met the man I’d spend the rest of my life with. In that bathroom, I knew that that man was you. You made feel scared, sad, alone, vulnerable, and most of the time so damn angry, but I also felt so ALIVE and so LOVED.
  51. 51. When you were gone there was always emptiness and loneliness so profound I could rock it in my arms like a baby; it had a life of its own and I would feel it consume me and chew me out. But when you were back, it would be almost as if the emptiness had never been. You complete me in ways that I never thought possible. So in front of all our friends and family, I promise to love and to respect you, to honor and cherish you, to always put your needs above my own, and to always make you happy for eternity and beyond. I love you, always!”
  52. 52. After the wedding vows were said, Pastor James addressed Drake, “May I have the rings please?” Drake looked dazed and subdued as he handed the rings over silently. Two weeks earlier he had attended Kendra and Dean‟s wedding, and now he was attending his older cousin‟s. He would not be surprised if his brother announced soon he, too, was getting married.
  53. 53. “A ring is a symbol of eternity and continuity. By wearing these rings, you both reaffirm the eternal commitment you‟re making to each other. Just as there is no end to a circle, let there be no end to your love for each other. Repeat after me please…” Pastor James began the last stretch of the ceremony.
  54. 54. "I Victoria Mendez, give you Storm Chace, this ring as an eternal symbol of my love and commitment to you." Victoria repeated the words as she slid the wedding band on his finger with shaky hands.
  55. 55. "I Storm Chace, give you Victoria Mendez, this ring as an eternal symbol of my love and commitment to you." Storm followed suit.
  56. 56. “In closing Victoria would like to sing a special song that resonates with her love for the groom,” Pastor James announced. Victoria had arranged with Kendra to add her rendition on the wedding programme just before her friends had left the penthouse that morning to get ready for the wedding. She had not wanted to be the only one being surprised at every turn, so why not? Storm turned to Victoria now, surprise written all over this face. And here he was, thinking he was the only one full of surprises. In a low, yet firm and sweet voice she serenaded him with Leona Lewis ’ The First Time I saw Your Face with the pianist playing the tune in the background.
  57. 57. “The first time ever I saw your face I thought the sun rose in your eyes And the moon and the stars were the gifts you gave To the dark and the empty skies… …The first time ever I kissed your mouth I felt the earth move in my hands Like the trembling heart of a captive bird That was there at my command my love
  58. 58. The first time ever I lay with you I felt your heart so close to mine And I knew our joy would fill the Earth And last, and last, and last till the end of time The first time ever I saw your face….
  59. 59. “What God has joined, let no man separate. Storm and Victoria, I now pronounce you husband and wife,” Pastor James‟ booming voice broke the awed silence that had settled on The Love Boat‟s top deck when Victoria had finished her heartfelt performance.
  60. 60. The new Mr. and Mrs. Storm Chace did not wait for the pastor‟s permission to kiss. As soon as they were pronounced husband and wife, they reached for each other in a passionate, emotional kiss.
  61. 61. “Hello there Mrs. Chace,” Storm whispered hoarsely when he finally drew away from her. “Well, Mr. Chace, you‟re such a tease,” Victoria pouted, she felt her husband had ended the kiss much too quickly.
  62. 62. The next few moments were euphoric for the bride and groom as they were congratulated and hugged by all the wedding guests.
  63. 63. “To Victoria and Storm and to finally getting it right,” Dean raised his glass as he finished his best man‟s speech with a toast. “To Victoria and Storm!” everyone agreed as they raised their glasses in celebration.
  64. 64. Handing the bride and groom a gift box containing two small compasses, Kendra took over the toast, “I‟ve never known any two people who are more right for each other than the two of you. But we all know your navigation skills in the unchartered territory of relationships suck, and I‟m glad your journey of not getting it right is finally over. But just to be on the safe side and we all don‟t have to live through another roller-coaster from you two we all hope these campuses will always lead you back to each other no matter how stormy the seas are or how rough the winds get. May you always find your way home, in each other‟s hearts. We all love you both so much!”
  65. 65. “Here here!” everyone raised their glasses and smiled at the newlyweds. “Kiss! Kiss! Kiss!” Drake yelled robustly and of course, Storm and Victoria felt much too obliged to meet his demands.
  66. 66. For their first dance as husband and wife, they danced to Leona Lewis’ A moment like this. “Boring day huh?” Storm asked teasingly as he took her hand and they opened the dance floor. “Very boring indeed; of course I have surprise weddings on yachts all the time,” Victoria teased back, leaning closer to him. This was the best day of her life and all her dreams were finally coming true, one by one, slowly but surely.
  67. 67. “How‟s baby doing?” he asked with concern in his eyes as Victoria fed him the first piece of their wedding cake. He really had not wanted the day to be too long and tiring for her. Before she could answer, her stomach growled loudly and they both laughed. “I guess baby‟s hungry now,” Victoria smiled up at him and drowned in the ocean in his eyes. She wondered if their baby would have his raven hair, his fair complexion, or the shade of his blue eyes.
  68. 68. Over his wife‟s shoulder, Storm saw Special Agent Melissa Swanson signal to him to come over. He knew from the dejected set of her shoulders and the severe frown on her face that it was not good news. “Hey, I think Melissa‟s ready to leave. I need to thank her before she goes,” he lied and cringed as he realized he was married for all of two hours and he was already lying to his wife. If it was up to him, he would tell Victoria the truth in a heartbeat, but what other choice did he have?
  69. 69. “Okay…hurry back!” Victoria said softly, her attention on the wedding cake and the amount of damage she was about to do. She scooped another piece of cake onto her plate just in case the one piece was not enough. She knew by the time the baby arrived she would be one big blob but she did not care…not today at least. She was too happy to worry about anything else or notice the heated exchange between her husband and his colleague….
  70. 70. “It‟s all over,” Victoria smiled much later when they were getting ready to leave for their honeymoon. “No sweetheart, this is just the beginning,” He smiled back, and with a firm grasp, he guided his wife off SS Maelstrum to his waiting car. They were followed closely by Dean and Kendra and the rest of the guests to send them off into the sunset and the beginning of their Unforgettable life together!
  71. 71. Special thanks go to Jolien for creating the amazing venue for Victoria and Storm’s wedding. I was not planning on having a yacht wedding but her creation inspired this chapter. You can find all her creations at Thanks to everyone who keeps reading and supporting this journey to a love that's Unforgettable. Your comments and suggestions are truly appreciated. Without you the story would not have made it this far. As always special thanks go to Tina for once again proofreading this chapter. Thanks to all at Desirable Discourses for your continued support. See you all at DD: