“Can we take it back to our house to open it?” he asked, wanting her in his arms, alone, more than any material gift on this planet.
“Yes, that sounds good,” she purred back, relaxing into his chest. “But I get to drive. We can pick up your bike in the morning.”
“Ok. But it would have been fun to take you home in that dress on the back of my bike…” She playfully slapped his shoulder. “Oh you! Come on.”
They headed out to the parking lot, and he was surprised to see that the only vehicle besides his own was a bright yellow convertible. She brought him to it and he hopped in the passenger seat. She sped off in the direction of their home. On the way he said, “I hope you realize I’m not so good with throwing birthday parties. I know your birthday is coming up soon, but I could never pull off what you just did today.”
“You have given me a gift that will last as long as I live,” she said over the sound of the wind. “I wouldn’t be alive to see another birthday if you hadn’t saved me. You gave me the gift of life, living to see another birthday. Something I could never give back to you. It’s a gift I get to enjoy everyday for the rest of my life.”
If only she realized she had saved him in so many ways herself.
When they arrived at the home they would now call theirs, she grabbed a small wrapped box out of the trunk. They headed to the front porch, and she gave it to him.
He wasn’t sure what to think when he opened it. It was a bunch of neatly packaged pieces of blank, decorative paper. He looked up at her inquisitively as they sat in the swing.
“Your gift was the most important to me, and I didn’t want to just guess” she explained. “I was hoping you could just write down what you would like, and I’ll make it happen.”
He felt his eyes widen. This was not what he expected, but it could be even better. Sex on the beach. A nice cold beer. Her lips on his body. He liked this idea, a lot.
She continued, “I knew you liked your motorcycle, so maybe certain motorcycle gear? Or a new bike? I know you like boxing, but I wasn’t sure whether to get you tickets or equipment? Your cabin is great, but maybe you dreamed of adding something different there?”
She looked serious. He let her go on, thankful to get a glimpse into her thoughts. “Or maybe you don’t need things, maybe you just want help. I am great at painting and finding great deals on furniture and decorating related things. Or maybe you hate washing dishes and I could just do dishes for life? I don’t know, help me out here! There’s about a hundred sheets of paper, but I know I owe you a million. Let’s just say they’re reusable….”
The vulnerability showed through in her voice. He grabbed the pen that was neatly organized inside the box and wrote his first request. He drew a picture of ring with an exaggerated diamond and wrote, “Will you marry me?” She was anxious to see, but he kept it hidden for just a second. He folded it with hopeful anticipation and handed it to her.
She excitedly scooped the note up and opened it. When she read it, her jaw nearly dropped to the ground. He got down on one knee, in front of her in the swing, and took her hands in his. “Anna Marie Buchanon, you have brought such joy into my life. Every minute spent with you is a minute I’ll always cherish. I love you to the moon and back, and I don’t ever want to be away from you again. Please, do me a great honor and marry me, be mine forever.”
She had tears threatening to spill down her cheeks, and she nodded her head. “Yes! Yes! I love you so much Tucker. Yes!” He reached up and kissed her, knowing she was for the first time truly all his.
And at that moment he became the happiest man on the planet.