Sinbad stood on the deck of his beloved Nomad and looked up at the night sky. It was a clear night - not a cloud in the sky. There was a light breeze and the stars were particularly beautiful and out in abundance tonight. "A perfect night," he thought as he sat on the rail.
Tonight was the night. He had decided that earlier today. He loved her and wanted to spend the rest of his life with her. And he had learnt a long time ago to act swiftly on his feelings. He had lost people in the past without them ever knowing how much they had meant to him. And there was no way he was going to let that happen with Bryn.
At the thought of her, he smiled in the darkness. He couldn't pinpoint exactly when their feelings for each other had turned from friendship to love. But he knew that from the first moment they had met, they had been connected to each other. Trust and friendship had been instantaneous and unbreakable. They had been through so much together over the years, and it had only strengthed the bond between them. His mind wandered back through the years. Back to the day when he had almost lost everything and everyone to Scratch. The day Mala, his mother, had saved him.
The Nomad sailed through calm seas, destination unknown. Sinbad leaned against the rail and looked out at the dark waters. For the first time in a long time, he was at peace with himself, able to think about things without anger or bitterness.
"You're up late," Bryn's soft voice broke the stillness of the night.
Sinbad looked over at her and smiled. "Yeah, guess I am. Just didn't feel like sleeping..." He wasn't at all surprised to see her. She always knew when he was brooding and needed to talk about it - sometimes before he did.
Bryn nodded in understanding as she sat beside him. "It was a long and.... interesting day," she said thoughtfully.
"Bryn... sometimes you have a way with understatement," Sinbad chuckled. She joined in his soft laughter.
After a few moments of quiet, they began to talk about the day. Both were a little confused about different things that had happened to them - Bryn with what Scratch had said about her heritage and Sinbad with Mala and how she had seemed so familiar to him. In talking to each other, they found comfort and understanding. They could say the things they wanted to say without fear of being misunderstood or judged. She was his sounding board, and he hers.
Soon, their quiet talk was punctuated by soft laughter and humour. As always, talking to her gave him comfort and a sense of peace.
The days turned into weeks.... And their friendship deepened.
Bryn sat at the railing, staring unseeing into the dark waters. The wind blew in a cold gust, but she was oblivious to it. Felt nothing but the turmoil inside. How could this be... how could the fates be so unkind, she screamed inside as she clenched her fists. Scratch's taunting words from a few weeks ago came into her mind - this is what he must have meant about her heritage. She was Turok's daughter... Rumina's sister... family to those that had done everything possible to hurt Sinbad and the others. She closed her eyes and sighed as she remembered the look in Doubar's eyes - everything had changed between them with the one revelation. Trust and friendship that had been unshakeable and strong was replaced with doubt... suspicion.
She groaned a little. "Please.. just go away, Sinbad.. leave me be.." she silently prayed.
But he didn't. Not that she had expected him to. He always seemed to know her moods, sometimes better than she did. She listened as his footsteps came and stopped behind her. She felt his gentle hands on her shoulders and, after a moment, she leaned back against him and her hand laced with his, seeking comfort in the contact.
"Give them time, Bryn. It's just a shock. They'll get over it and see you're still the same Bryn as before. Nothing's changed." His voice was calm, soothing her frazzled nerves.
She swallowed a sudden lump that had formed in her throat. They might... but would he? she wondered as she started to draw away from him. She was afraid to look at him... afraid to see what she would find when she looked into his sea blue eyes.
But he wasn't going to let her go that easily. He gently but firmly turned her towards him and cupped her face so she looked up at him. His normally bright eyes were sad, but everything that had been there before was still there. His trust in her, his friendship, his belief in her.
"Bryn... it's going to be ok. I'm still here... and I always will be," he whispered, hoping he could give her the strength she needed to get past this.
She nodded and let herself relax into his embrace, taking the strength he silently and unconditionally offered to her.
Weeks turned into months... Friendship turned into something more.
The music played festively as everyone danced and roared with laughter. The ladies all tried to grab the attention of a certain blue-eyed sailor but it was all in vain. He only had eyes for the dark haired beauty he held closely in his arms as they danced. She shook her head lightly and chuckled. "Sinbad... if you keep staring at me like that, you're going to give me a complex..."
He grinned back at her. "Can't help it, Bryn..." he paused as he gazed into her dark eyes, "You really look beautiful tonight...."
She didn't say anything but the smile she gave him took his breath away. He had never noticed til now how her smile seemed to shine right through to his heart. How her dark eyes mesmerized him and drew him in.
He slowly drew her face towards him and the world around them disappeared as their lips met. After a long moment, they slowly drew apart, breathless. This wasn't the first kiss they had shared... but there was a depth to this kiss that hadn't been there in the others.
He rested his forehead against hers. "I love you, Bryn..." he whispered.
"I love you, Sinbad," she whispered back.
Months passed into years, and the love between them grew deeper and stronger. No one doubted that the two of them belonged together. They were soul mates - each was the missing part of the other. Bryn was the inner peace and strength that Sinbad needed and he was the light and laughter she needed. He couldn't imagine his life without her by his side.
He let out a deep breath and chuckled lightly to himself. Now... if only he could put what he was feeling into words. And actually say them to Bryn without making a complete fool of himself.
He turned to her, her quiet voice startling him a little bit, and his heart did a little leap as it always did when he saw her.
"Everything ok, below?" he asked, not really caring, as he took her in his arms and gave her a hug.
"Yup..." she replied with a little chuckle, returning his hug. She looked above his head at the night sky filled with stars.
Sinbad grinned and gently kissed her. He couldn't resist when she looked up that way. She turned in his embrace and leaned against his chest. In comfortable silence, they watched the heavens sparkle in the darkness.
"It's a beautiful night..." Bryn said softly, finally breaking the silence.
"Aye... but not as beautiful as you..." he whispered back as he kissed the top of her head.
She chuckled and turned to him, disentangling herself from his embrace. "Flattery will get you nowhere, Sinbad...."
He grinned as he brought his head down towards hers. "Maybe not... but it's still the truth," he whispered as he brushed his lips softly against hers. His arms wrapped themselves around her once again, as the kiss deepened. After a long moment, the kiss ended.
"Happy?" he asked, resting his forehead against hers and kissing the tip of her nose.
She smiled and nodded, enjoying the quiet moment. Even after all these years, adventures were many and quiet moments like these were rare - and something to be treasured.
"I love you..." he whispered.
"I love you too, Sinbad." She drew back a little to look into his eyes. She knew something was on his mind - had been for a few days now. She had patiently not said anything, knowing that he would come to her and open up when he was ready.
He looked down into her dark eyes, and he suddenly felt all the nervousness drain away. He knew what he wanted to say... how to say it.
"Bryn... I've been doing a lot of thinking... and wondering..." he whispered as he reached out to gently move a stray strand of hair away from her eyes.
"About what, Sinbad?" Bryn asked softly.
"About us. The way I feel about you...." He took a deep breath. "Wondering...
"How do I get through one night without you.
If I had to live without you... what kind of life would that be.
I need you in my arms, need you to hold.
You're my world, my heart, my soul...
And if you ever leave, you would take away everything real in my life.
So... I've been wondering, how do I live without you.
I want to know, how do I breathe without you.
If you ever go... how do I ever survive."
Bryn swallowed the lump that formed in her throat, but couldn't keep the tears from falling at hearing his words. Sinbad gently brushed them away with his fingers as she sat down on a nearby crate. He knelt in front of her and took her hand in his before continuing.
"Without you... there'd be no sun in my sky.
There would be no love in my life,
There'd be no world left for me.
And I don't know what I would do, I'd be lost if I lost you.
If you ever leave, you would take away everything.
I need you with me, Bryn, because you're everything good in my life."
His hand caressed her cheek and his voice grew husky with emotion. "You're the better half of me, Bryn... my love, my best friend. And I love you. Will you marry me?"
Bryn smiled at him through her tears as she reached up and gently caressed his face. Although Sinbad had never been very good with saying what he was feeling, all she had ever had to do was look into his sea blue eyes to see the depth of his love for her. She knew how hard it must have been for him to try and come up with the words for his proposal - and it made her love him that much more.
Her mind raced through the past years and their relationship. Like him, she had felt a connection between them the moment they had met on that island. Their fast friendship had grown stronger with time until one day, she had suddenly realized that she didn't want to think about a life without him in it. He was her best friend and confidante... the other half of her. How many times over the years, had they known what the other was thinking or feeling without saying a single word; had finished each other's sentances without thinking; had always known when one of them needed to talk and when they needed to be alone; shared the same laughter and sorrows. And through it all, had been an underlaying bond of trust that no one could break - and many had tried.
As she looked into his eyes now, her mind filled with the words she wanted to say to him. She reach up for his hand that was playing with her hair and held it between hers.
If there were no words, no way to speak...
I would still hear you.
If there were no tears, no way to feel inside, I'd still feel for you.
And even if the sun refused to shine, even if romance ran out of rhyme,
You would still have my heart, until the end of time.
You're all I need, my love, my Valentine."
She stood up and as Sinbad got to his feet, he gently pulled her towards him. Her eyes never leaving his, she softly continued.
"All of my life, I have been waiting for all you give to me.
You've opened my eyes, and shown me how to love unselfishly.
I've dreamed of this a thousand times before,
And in my dreams, I couldn't love you more.
I will give you my heart, until the end of time,
You're all I need, my love, my valentine."
She wrapped her arms around his neck and with eyes filled with tears again, she whispered, "I love you, Sinbad. With all my heart and everything I am. Yes.. I'll marry you."
Their lips met in a soulful kiss that seemed to go on and on. When it finally ended, they stood looking into each other's eyes, too overwhelmed with emotions to say anything.
Bryn suddenly tilted her head and looked like she was listening to something. Sinbad gave her a questioning look and then heard it too. From the other side of the crates that hid them from the rest of the deck, he could hear the not so quite whisperings of Firouz and Doubar.
"For the hundredth time, Firouz, we are NOT spying!" Doubar's harsh whisper floated through the air. "We're just... making sure that Sinbad's proposal goes without a hitch."
"How do you know he's proposing, Doubar? And, point of fact, we're crouching in the darkness behind some crates, that Bryn and Sinbad are on the other side of. And another point, we're whispering. So that means we ARE spying."
Sinbad closed his eyes and sighed while Bryn tried not to laugh. He grinned at her and the two of them quietly slipped around the other side of the crates.
"I know my little brother. He's been much too quiet the past few days. And he's been looking at Bryn with a certain look on his face when he thinks no one's watching." At the doubt on Firouz' face, Doubar rolled his eyes. "Look. Just call it a... brother thing. I know he's going to ask Bryn to marry him." Rongar nodded in agreement. "And it's about bloody time..." Doubar muttered.
"What do you 3 think you're doing?"
The three of them nearly jumped out of their skins when they heard Sinbad's voice from behind them. They whirled around so fast, Firouz lost his balance and fell back against Doubar who fell against Rongar. They landed in a heap on the deck. Sinbad had to struggle to keep a frown on his face - especially hearing Bryn's muffled laughter from beside him.
"Uh.. Sinbad! What are you doing here?" Doubar asked, trying to disentangle himself and stand up.
"I was checking the cargo and making sure everything was secure for the night. And you haven't answered my question, big brother. Why are the 3 of you crouched in the darkness?" Sinbad asked, managing to keep a stern voice.
"We were... searching for something... that I dropped.. near here.." Firouz replied, finally getting Rongar's foot off his head and standing up.
"Uh huh... searching the dark deck by star light, are we?" Sinbad crossed his arms in front of his chest and raised an eye at him. All three of them nodded and looked back at Sinbad, guilt written all over their faces. He sighed heavily and shook his head. "Look for it in the morning. It's late. Have you finished repairing that torn sail?"
"Uh... well... point of fact... no." Firouz replied sheepishly. Doubar glared at him and he shrugged.
"Well, you better get below and finish it or you're going to be up all night."
Doubar tried to protest but one look at Sinbad told him he better not push it. He may be the older brother but Sinbad was still Captain. He sighed and the three of them slowly made their way towards the hatch.
"Oh, and Doubar, when we get to port tomorrow, you might want to buy some new clothes. If I remember correctly, you don't have anything that would be suitable for a wedding." Sinbad called out, not bothering to hide his grin.
Doubar slowly turned to his brother. "And whose wedding will I be needing these new clothes for?" he asked, hoping he would get the answer he wanted to hear.
Sinbad looked down at Bryn, by his side and smiled. One hand held hers and the other wrapped around her shoulder, gently pulling her to him as he kissed the top of her head. Bryn grinned at Doubar and gave him the reply he was so impatiently waiting for. "Mine... and Sinbad's."
Firouz and Rongar grinned as Doubar let out a whoop of joy and ran over to Sinbad. He picked him up and gave him a huge hug. "I knew it! I knew you were going to ask her! And it's about time, little brother! I thought I was going to have to knock some sense into you to get you to propose!"
Sinbad tried to return his brother's hug. "Doubar... I'm glad you're so happy... but... I can't breathe!"
Doubar finally let his little brother go and went to give Bryn a hug as Sinbad tried to catch his breath. He wrapped her into a light bear hug and whispered to her. "I'm so happy for you, little sister. I know you two love each other very much. I'm just sorry it took him so long to do this." Bryn laughed as she returned his hug. Firouz and Rongar added their congratulations, while Doubar once again hugged his brother.
"This calls for a celebration! Come on!" Doubar cheerfully announced as he headed back below.
The others all laughed as they followed. Bryn hung back a little and once Rongar had disappeared through the hatch, reached out to stop Sinbad. He half turned towards her and they softly kissed. She smiled at him and whispered, "I love you..." as she turned to head below deck. He grinned and gently pulled her back into his embrace and a backbending kiss that took both their breaths away.
"I love you too, Bryn..." he whispered back when the kiss finally ended.
Doubar's voice floated up from below deck. "Come on, you two lovebirds... you can kiss all you want later! Celebrate now!"
They laughed and shared one last kiss and headed below. Doubar was right - they had the rest of their lives together in front of them. Tonight's laughter and love would be shared with everyone. Before long, laughter filtered out of the Nomad and filled the night sky.