"We don't have to do this today," Alexis fretted, playing with her right earring. This was at the top of her priority list but the bottom of her want-to-do list. "They won't know any different anyway." She didn't see how it mattered; she'd been staying at Ted's more and more lately.
"We have to tell them today, Alexis," Ted stated kindly but also firmly--a tone that Alexis loved. "Your brother is going to know the difference when you keep on dodging his calls like you have been for a day and a half." Ted looked next to him at Alexis and grinned when he saw her fiddling with the small box that had been in her purse every time they'd gone out in the past 36 hours.
"Ugh, Ted. No, no you're right. It's just--I don't know. We've only been back together for like a hot ten, and David's tendency to worry makes him a little judgy," she said nervously bouncing. Realistically, there wasn't really anything to be nervous about, but Alexis didn't want anything to ruin the pure excitement of the past day and a half. She knocked on the door, took Ted's hand, and bounced on her heels with anticipation of one of her brothers opening the door.
When Alexis realized that the light in the apartment off of the vet office was on, she couldn't move. Her mouth was stuck slightly open, her hand lying on her chest. "David the light's on," she whispered again.
David didn't know what to do, so a nodded and put a hand on Alexis's shoulder. He knew that Ted hadn't even tried to sell his practice or home in Schitt's Creek; the light in there hadn't been on in well over a year. Patrick looked at Alexis and then at David, unsure how they were going to get home. When he caught David's eye, all Patrick could do was mouth "oh my god" to him and then watch as David turned his attention back to shell-shocked Alexis.
"Let's go home," David gently suggested. As much as he inferred that it was, in fact, Ted in there, he didn't want Alexis to get her hopes up. Just as she was starting to regain confidence in her decision to move to New York, David knew that the last thing his sister needed was for her to think she saw Ted and it wasn't him after all.
"But David, I think--" Alexis said before being cut off by her brother.
"We don't know who's in there, Alexis," David reminded her even though he wasn't exactly confident about this statement. "It could be someone who just has a key."
Alexis shook her head. "No one else has a key. There were only ever two, and I still have the second one." Her face was growing pale, and her eyes had a hint of bittersweet in them.
David and Patrick each wrapped an arm around Alexis's shoulders and guided her through the streets of Schitt's Creek, reaffirming that it was all going to be okay.
"If it's meant to be, Alexis..." David said. He knew he didn't have to finish.
Alexis took a deep breath and nodded. She was pretty sure it was somehow meant to be. She just needed to know if it was him in the building.
"Alexis, what are you doing here?" David was clearly irritated about not hearing from Alexis for the past few days. "You just ghost me and don't even tell me when you are and aren't coming back." It seemed as though David could go on forever, but Patrick walked to the door to see who had knocked. He smiled.
"Alexis, you have a key," he said, wondering why she knocked. "You can just walk in."
"No, I know, it's just I've been staying with Ted more, and I didn't want to, like, barge in or anything," Alexis replied, half-lying. The real reason she had knocked was that she wanted to tell them what she needed to tell them semi-formally, but if she said "formal," her brothers would start assuming things.
David gave her a face that said something along the lines of "wtf," and Patrick gestured for Alexis and Ted to come inside the house.
"Can I get either of you anything," Patrick asked, trying to be an accommodating host--even though Alexis wasn't really a guest but rather someone who technically lived there and could get anything if she wanted it.
"I'll take some water if it's not too much trouble," Ted requesting with Alexis nodding in agreement next to him. Patrick went into the kitchen to get them all water.
"Sit, David," Alexis ordered.
"Excuse me?" David asked, wondering how Alexis felt so comfortable ordering him around in his own house after ghosting him for almost two days.
Alexis took Ted's hand, and they sat down on a couch. "Just sit, David. We have some catching up to do, and I need to tell you something."
David cautiously sat on the couch diagonal from his sister and her...boyfriend? David didn't know if they were calling it that yet. Soon, after a few moments of awkward silence catalyzed by David's curiosity-meets-anxiety, Patrick came back with all of the waters, and Alexis looked ready to speak. Oh god, David thought. He had no idea what they were going to tell him and Patrick. It had only been two months.
Alexis was walking to meet David and Patrick and Rose Apothecary, already carrying their foods of choice, so she could eat lunch with them at the store. Her head had been spinning for the past week and a half since she saw the light on and was finding it better to be around the people who supported her. Mainly, David and Patrick were gracious enough to be willing to play this role--David, reluctantly and Patrick, not so reluctantly.
She had only seen what she thought could be the back of Ted's head twice in the last week or so. She never wanted to double-check; she didn't know how she felt about it all. On one hand, she was pretty sure that Ted was the love of her life, and she didn't really care to find out any differently. On the other hand, her heart was finally starting to heal after their parting of ways, and she didn't think she could handle seeing his face again only for him to have to go back to the Galapagos. That pun-spewing, huge-smiling, bright-eyed face.
She had been walking the longest ways possible around the vet clinic and spending only short periods of time in the common areas of town like the cafe. Everyone knew that Ted was back; they also knew that talking to Alexis about it would hurt her, and they genuinely liked having her back even if it was only temporary.
As Alexis approached the store, she looked around the street to confirm that there was no one who resembled Ted. It had been a few days since she had spotted him, and frankly, she wasn't sure if he knew she was back--or maybe he was avoiding her just like she was him.
Alexis walked into the Apothecary, engaged in whatever was happening on her phone, and immediately hears her brother's voice.
"Fuck," David says under his breath.
Alexis looked up and felt her stomach drop. David was standing at the checkout counter, looking extremely uncomfortable. In front of him, she could only see a man slightly taller than herself with tanned arms and brown hair. As she cooly attempted to swallow the lump building in her throat, Alexis began to turn around. She couldn't handle this--it was too much, and she refused to have her heart in as many pieces as it was over a year ago. Hence, she hadn't dated since then.
"Alexis?" she heard the man say. Alexis turned around, confirming that it was, in fact, her former boyfriend. "I was just saying hi to Dav...I didn't know you were back." Ted looked stunned.
Alexis couldn't speak, and she wanted so badly to leave. She hadn't known what to expect if she saw him. She knew that she had a fulfilling, temporarily lacking, career and whole life in New York that made her happy as the fierce PR boss she was and is. She knew that was a good look for her, and being single was very on-brand for that look.
It wasn't that she was hung up on him; it was that she loved him, and no space or time was going to stop that.
"I...um...I..." Alexis didn't know what to say.
"It's...um...it's good to see you," Ted said anxiously, watching Alexis, and knowing from her face that she could crumble. He was standing stronger than Alexis, but his deer-in-the-headlights expression proved to David, who was awkwardly watching this go down.
"Yeah, um, you too," Alexis replied. A stray tear fell from her eye, and she wiped it (hopefully) before anyone noticed. She took a silent, deep breath walked around Ted, desperately trying to avoid eye contact, and handed David the bag of food, which included her own lunch. "Here's your lunch, David. Patrick's is in there too."
"Aren't you eating with us today?" David asked. He had thought she would have been at least a little bit happier to eventually see him.
"No, actually I forgot that I have something I need to do today," Alexis replied with her voice wavering. "Also, I just don't think I can do this today." Her voice broke when she said "today," and Alexis knew that was her cue to leave. She turned around to the door and walked out. David saw her lift her arm from behind to wipe another tear.
Ted just stood and looked at David. He looked kind of...sad.
"I really didn't know she was back. No one told me," Ted thought out loud.
"I know," David said warmly. He knew that Ted really had just come in for a visit. They had been friendly when Ted and Alexis re-started their relationship, and Ted was always the one to be polite and say hello. Now, though, David was just thinking about the best way to console Alexis when he and Patrick got home.
You could hear a pin drop in David and Patrick's house. The two of them were sitting on a couch diagonal from Ted and Alexis, and the silence was becoming awkward. David was avoiding eye contact with his sister, and Ted was tapping his feet on the ground, figuring it would probably be better for Alexis to be the one to start this conversation. They all sat for a few more moments until Alexis cleared her throat, signaling that she was about to start speaking.
"Okay, so um," she began. She hardly knew what to say. "As you both know, Ted and I have been seeing each other recently, and I have been spending more time with him recently."
David and Patrick nodded but looked confused. Patrick was hiding it well, but David was squinting with his chin out forward. Alexis continued.
"And as you both know, I wasn't myself for a while. You watched me, like, struggle a little bit," Alexis smirked. "I know I said it was mostly because work was so slow, and this might be a shock to you guys, but it was also because being back here really reminded me of some very fond memories that I never had to face in New York."
"No," David snarked, and turned to Ted to see if he had anything to say. Alexis glared at her brother, not appreciating his untimely sarcasm.
The air was icy, and it was killing Ted enough that he had to jump in.
"For the record, I also thought of Alexis most--every--day that I was away," he began. "Don't get me wrong; I knew we made the right decision. It just felt like I left a bit more than a piece of myself in Schitt's Creek."
David caught Alexis turning to Ted and giving him the most absolutely loving look he had ever seen, and he began to understand what was happening. He stopped himself from cracking a smile, but Patrick was grinning next to him.
"I love you," Alexis whispered in Ted's ear while kissing his cheek after one of his sweetest comments ever. Shortly after, her face turned more serious. "Oh yeah, I didn't regret our break up. I became one of the coolest boss ladies NYC has ever seen." David rolled his eyes. "But if there is one good thing to come out of all of this, it's this." Alexis didn't have to even say was "this" was. Both she and Ted had been living fulfilling lives in New York and the Galapagos and were sad to leave them respectively, but what really softened the blow was gaining each other back.
"Guys, the past two months has taken my work in the Galapagos away from me," Ted said. "It was so hard to leave, but being back here reminded me that even when my job is taken away, I still have something." Alexis gave him another loving look.
David was becoming uncomfortable. He was beginning to remember that sometimes, Alexis and Ted together could be incredibly sappy. He knew what he was about to hear--though he thought it was way too soon--and he didn't need the monologue, even though one of his favorite things was to see his sister this happy.
Alexis looked at her two brothers and smiled wider than David had seen in a while. She began reaching into her purse next to her but hid whatever she had taken out behind her hand. Little did she know, everyone had kind of figured out what it was. Ted clutched her hand excitedly.
"Ted and I have mutually agreed that we don't want to be with anyone but each other," Alexis said, her face cheery. She removed her empty and from Ted and revealed the small box she was holding in her other. "We're getting married."
Even though he had figured it all out fairly easily, he was still stunned hearing his little sister announce her engagement. Patrick, like Ted and Alexis, couldn't keep his smile off of his face, but David's face held a look of shock.
As Alexis opened the box and slid the ring onto her left ring finger, she said: "David? Please be okay with this."
David looked up at his sister--his little sister who went from a high school drop out who spent her days following men around the world and relying on her money to a New York City PR professional who was in love with a man who loved her right back--and couldn't help but smile in his pride for who she had become.
"Of course, I'm okay with this, Alexis. I'm more than okay with this: I'm so, so happy for you." Alexis shed a few tears at her most important stamp of approval, her brother. David got up and walked to Alexis, and Alexis stood up from her spot on the couch.
They wrapped their arms around each other, and in her hair, David whispered, "congratulations."
"Thank you," Alexis replied genuinely.
By now, Ted and Patrick had engulfed themselves in a "bro-hug," and Patrick congratulated him just as David had Alexis. When the group of four switched to hug who they hadn't yet. Patrick, who, at his point, was just as much of a brother to Alexis as David, sweetly congratulated her, and David did the same for Ted. Before long, they all returned to their spots on the two couches. They spent the remainder of the evening talking about the dream weddings David and Alexis had planned when they were young, and their future plans. Although the future of the next couple of months was up in the air, what they knew would remain was each others' company. Alexis went home with Ted that night, and David and Patrick figured that her stuff wouldn't remain at their house for much longer.
Patrick let David go home once the day got to the point when the store was slow enough that it was manageable for one person. David told him what had happened when Alexis saw Ted, and he could see anxiety dripping out of him for the remainder of the day. David hated to think of Alexis sitting alone at the house after seeing the man she had spent more than a year trying to get over.
David walked more quickly than usual into his house, and not surprisingly, he found Alexis on the couch in the living room with both fresh and dry tears on her face and a tissue box next to her. Her head rested on the arm of the couch, and she was mindlessly watching The Office, but when she saw David, she quickly wiped her tears.
"You don't have to do that, Alexis," David assured. He didn't exactly know what he was walking into; he just knew that his sister was upset.
Alexis didn't respond. She just paused the TV and waited to see if her brother was going to say anything else.
"It's okay to be upset," he continued. "Just, what exactly happened there?"
Alexis sighed. She didn't feel ready to talk about it yet, but David had spent the past month or so of her staying at his house being more than understanding, and she supposed that maybe talking would make her feel better. It had in the past. Alexis looked up at her brother, now sitting next to her, and though he wouldn't admit it, her sad, borderline heartbroken, face broke David's heart a little.
"Even though I figured he was back, I never thought I would see him," Alexis began. "It just seemed, like, so far off."
David nodded. "But then why wasn't seeing him a good thing?"
"David, I don't think I can say goodbye to him again," Alexis was doing her very best to not cry, but it wasn't completely adequate. Her tears restarted. "I've already done it once, and if we start talking again, we'll just have to do it again. I love my life and my job in N.Y.C. too much to not go back once it's safe, and I'm sure he feels the same way about the Galapagos." Alexis sighed again. "I know the role he supposed to be playing in my life, but it just can't happen. I thrive as a boss in the city, and I would, like, never ever ever want to take Ted away from all the turtles."
David nods, absent of anything useful to say. When Alexis is deep, she is very deep, and he knew that everything she was saying is correct. That didn't take away the hurt of the situation though.
"I know you don't want to get hurt again, Alexis, but it might help to talk to him." Alexis looked down and shook her head at her brother's suggestion. "I'm not saying you even have to see him after that. In fact, I'll help you get around it. If you end up wanting to continue talking, that's fine too. Just, maybe going to talk to him will give you a little bit more closure."
"We got closure, David," Alexis sadly argued. "That night in the cafe, we got closure. We both knew that we were doing the right thing because it was hard. That was our closure. Remember?
David couldn't forget. He would never forget, actually. He went to the motel room to pick up some clothes that night, and Alexis was sitting up at the edge of her bed in a long, pink dress, staring blankly in front of her and with mascara stains down her face. When he asked her what was wrong, she just shook her head, so he went to see if his parents knew. Somberly, they told him that they had pieced together that she and Ted had broken up, but after nearly an hour, they had realized that she wasn't going to talk and left her alone. David nodded timidly and walked back into his and Alexis's room, knelt down in front of her, and wrapped her in a hug. As her arms wrapped around him, all David could say was that it was going to be okay. David hadn't heard choked sobs like from that night since they were children, and as he tucked her into bed, she whispered something inaudibly about being alone.
"Of course I remember," David replied. He didn't want to remember, but he did. "I know you have closure. It just might be nice to talk to him about what you have been up to. He'll want to hear about it, and I know you want to hear about the turtles." David smirked, and Alexis giggled. They sat and watched TV together until Patrick came home with dinner.
"Ted, I seriously think it's fine to not tell them yet," Alexis insisted the morning after telling David and Patrick about the engagement. "We can call, like, next week or something." She was standing at Ted's kitchen counter making coffee while Ted finished up making their breakfast next to her.
Ted came up behind Alexis and wrapped his arms around her. He knew she was nervous to tell her parents, he didn't think they'd react badly. He had always gotten along with the Roses.
"Wouldn't you rather them hear it from us than someone else?" Ted asked. "You wore your ring out to breakfast this morning; people are going to start catching on, and you know that at least someone in town will call your mom."
Alexis knew that her fiance was right, and truthfully, she didn't know why she didn't want to tell her parents. When Alexis and Ted parted ways, Moira and Johnny had both been genuinely sad for their daughter. They saw pieces of their own relationship in Alexis and Ted's and hadn't previously even imagined that they were going to break up.
When Alexis didn't respond, Ted continued. "Plus, if we tell them now, the shock will wear off sooner--especially because they don't know that we actually started seeing each other again."
Alexis sighed. "Ugh, Ted. No. I know. You're right." She grabbed her phone off of the kitchen table and suggested to Ted that they moved to the living room so that they could sit more comfortably on the couch. They walked over and sat down. Alexis opened her phone and tapped on Johnny's contact--he was just slightly better at answering FaceTimes, and she and Ted had decided to tell them their news as close to face-to-face as possible. Once the phone was ringing, Ted and Alexis stacked some books to lean the phone against and made sure they were both in the frame.
Just as the phone said "connecting," she heard her dad say, "Hi, Sweetheart," before he even saw her face.
Once the phone connected all the way, Alexis could see her mother sitting next to her father, though it was a little more difficult to see considering Johnny was holding the phone rather than setting it down.
"Alexis," Moira began. "Why must we chat face-to-face today? I have not done my morning ritual. Where is David? He is always here for our face-chats. And this close to dawn? I was perfectly satiated with our--Theodore?"
Alexis took a deep breath, and Ted followed her lead. As Johnny squinted to check if it was really Ted, Moira's expression turned from neutral to slightly pleased. No one seemed, in any way, mad.
Alexis stood at Ted's front door and waited after nervously knocking. It was the same day that she accidentally saw him in the store and was convinced by David to at least go say hello and maybe even catch up. Her heart was beating uncontrollably, and her palms were sweating. She never even felt this way on her international adventures in her teens and early 20s. At 8 p.m., the sun was beginning to set, and Alexis didn't know what would hurt worse: not connecting with Ted in the same way anymore or feeling like they were never apart.
Alexis heard footsteps approaching the door, and her heart began going faster. She didn't know if she was doing the right thing, but David rarely, if ever, sent her to do the wrong thing. Ted opened the door, and when he saw the woman in front of him, he looked stunned. Alexis gave him a small, unsure smile--one that held a great deal of bittersweetness.
"Alexis," Ted said, his sad eyes and tone making him melancholy. He opened the door wider. "Please, please, come in."
Alexis stepped inside the familiar place and was struck by the memories. "It looks the same in here," she commented. "I like that."
Ted looked down and grinned. He felt the same happy feeling that he used to when he knew Alexis was happy.
"I'm so, so sorry about today at the store," Alexis said.
No, Alexis, I shouldn't have...I didn't know you were back," Ted explained. "I wouldn't have gone in had I known you could have shown up." Alexis looked disappointed in his response. "Not that I didn't want to see you. It's just...I didn't know how you felt."
Alexis shook her head. "I'm so sorry." It hurt so bad to be standing in front of him. All of her memories were flooding back, and her breathing was becoming heavier. She desperately wanted to avoid crying, but as her blinking became heavier and the lump in her throat rapidly grew, she knew her attempt would come up short. A tear left her eye. "I thought you might be back, but I figured that, like, if we somehow didn't see each other, we wouldn't have to relive anything."
"It's fine, Alexis, really," Ted ensured. "I get it, I do. Please don't cry." Too late. Alexis was dabbing her bottom eyelids in an attempt to prevent her mascara from running too far down her face.
"I just missed you," Alexis said through silent tears. Ted let out a deep breath as if he had been waiting to hear those words since he had seen her earlier. He tentatively walked forward and opened his arms just enough before Alexis fell into them. He hugged her tightly with his chin resting on the top of her head. Her arms were tight around him, and Alexis felt like it was a year and a half. So much for only saying "hi," but if this was what Alexis needed to be relaxed, then so be it.
"I missed you too," Ted whispered. The reluctant exes held each other for a few more moments before letting go. "What brought you back here?" Ted asked. Alexis noticed that his eyes were glassy with unspilled tears.
"Work was really slow, and I was lonely in my NYC apartment," Alexis said. Ted smiled at the thought of her going through with living in New York. "David picked me up about a month ago, and I've been here ever since."
"I'm proud of you Alexis," Ted stated. He didn't just mean for moving to New York for her dreams; he also meant being vulnerable enough to ask her brother for help and accept it in something other than a kidnapping for something.
Alexis's actual crying had stopped, but the tears were still coming from her eyes. "What about you? What happened to the Galapagos? Wasn't it, like, another year and a half?"
Ted shrugged. "They made everyone not from the Galapagos go home. There was a thing with our visas where even though there weren't many cases there, they apparently didn't cover pandemics," he responded.
"I'm sorry," Alexis said, feeling bad that his dream job was cut short. "At least you'll get to go back when this is over."
Ted shook his head. "No, um, actually they figured that by the time it safe to fly back and forth again, our contracts would be up." Alexis gave him a face that suggested she assumed he would just renew the contract. "I decided I can't live in a dorm forever, and three years would be enough. I didn't quite get there, but I can still visit, you know?"
Alexis nodded slowly. "So you're done in the Galapagos?" She asked. She didn't know what that meant. She didn't want to get any hopes up because she still wanted to eventually get back to New York City.
"Permanently, yeah. I'll hopefully go back on shorter trips every once in a while when it's safe again," Ted explained. Alexis nodded again. There were a few moments of silence that were bordering but not quite awkward. "Do...do you wanna sit? I'd love to hear what you've been up to, Alexis. It's been way too long."
Alexis grinned. He was right: it had been way too long. They had agreed that talking would be painful, but she was looking so forward to hearing about his experiences and sharing her own. "I'd love that."
Until the morning hours, Alexis and Ted sat on Ted's living room couch exchanging stories from the past year and a half. They lived strikingly different lives in this time, but in the back of their minds, they knew these lives wouldn't have been possible without each other. The two of them listened closely to each story, paying attention to every detail because they cared. Alexis wanted to hear about the turtles, and Ted wanted to hear about the PR world. It wasn't until nearly 2:30 a.m. that Alexis got up to head back to David and Patrick's house. She and Ted ended the night with a hug and a promise to see each other again soon. Alexis hadn't felt this kind of happiness in a long time. She felt better just like David said she would. Of course, David was right. He was always right.
"Theodore, is that you?" Moira asked. She couldn't hide her smirk. As much as she tried to avoid meddling in her daughter's love life, she couldn't help it--she liked Ted. He's the only boyfriend of Alexis's that ever felt right.
"It is, Mrs. Rose. How are you?" Ted responded. Alexis smiled; he could really turn on the charm...not that he really ever had to turn it off. Moira nodded in response, signaling that she was well.
"Ted, it's great to see you! How are you?" Johnny asked, laughing from being genuinely excited and hopeful that he and Alexis were back together. Alexis was always happiest around Ted, and he had never seen her quite the way he had when she and Ted broke up. She always was the best version of herself around him.
"I'm well, Mr. Rose, thank you," Ted replied politely. There was a moment's pause. "It's great to see you both."
"Alexis, to what do we owe this grand surprise?" Moira asked. Alexis had told her that Ted was back in town about two months before, but she hadn't heard anything else.
"Well," Alexis said. "Ted and I have been seeing each other again." She tried to hide her grin, but it was proving to be impossible. Ted had given up--he was fully smiling. So were Moira and Johnny. They were speechless for a moment. "Mom? Dad?" Alexis asked. She never would have guessed this maybe seven years ago, but her parents' approval was important to her.
"That's fantastic news, Sweetheart!" Johnny exclaimed sincerely. He knew Alexis had had a rough few months before and after going back to Schitt's Creek and was thrilled to see a genuine smile. "Oh, this is the best news I've heard in a long, long time."
"Alexis, Ted, that is splendid news," Moira said. "How did this happen?"
Alexis and Ted looked at each other with loving eyes as they decided how to tell the story. In detail, they just explained what had happened. Not long after David brought Alexis back to Schitt's Creek, Ted was sent home from the Galapagos because it didn't look like things were going to get better any time soon. After they faced each other at the store, Alexis showed up at Ted's door and caught up for hours upon hours. Throughout the next two or three weeks, they hung out casually, as friends, until they realized that they had fallen back old habits without recognizing it--kind of like before the first Single's Week. It was just random acts of borderline love...because though neither of them would outwardly admit it at first, they did love each other. Once they noticed this, they decided to give it another shot, especially given that their futures were so uncertain, and everything fit into place. Sure, they couldn't see six months ahead, but Ted wasn't going back to the Galapagos long-term, and New York was one of the most dangerous COVID-19 hotspots in the States. They'd both be in Schitt's Creek for a while. Ever since then, they had been making it work, and they finished the story of how they came back together making sure Moira and Johnny knew how happy they were.
Johnny was tearing up, and Moira was elbowing him to pull it together.
"Oh my god, Dad, you don't need to cry," Alexis said with gratitude for her parents' support.
"This is what I...we've wanted for you, Honey," Johnny said, trying but failing to clear his throat. "And I always hoped it would happen with you, Ted."
Ted wanted so badly to cry, but he didn't want to in front of the Roses...his future in-laws...even though they didn't know it quite yet. "I appreciate that, Mr. Rose. I feel the same way about her."
"Well, Mom, Dad, since we have you here, I have one more thing to tell you," Alexis stated slowly, trying to gauge her parents' reactions.
"Alexis, I hope you are not about to tell me about a bebe, dear, clearly you--" Moira stated before Alexis interjected.
"Ew, no, Mom," Alexis said, making Ted give her a concerned look. "I mean, not 'ew' forever, but Ted and I have literally been back together for, like two months. I'm not ready for that as of now. Too many changes all at once." That made Ted breathe a bit easier. He longed for a family, especially with Alexis, but they hadn't spoken about it yet.
"Well, then what must you tell us, Dear?" Moira asked with Johnny looking curiously at the screen in front of him.
"Okay, so we don't when, and we don't know where, but Ted and I have mutually agreed that we don't want to be apart again like we were before," Alexis said.
"Okay..." Johnny said. He kind of just thought that was implied. Why else would they bother getting back together. Alexis huffed.
"Ugh, okay. Ted and I are getting married!" She explained while holding up her left hand with her engagement ring.
Moira clasped her hands together. "Alexis! Married?" she said, clearly very excited. Alexis nodded quickly and eagerly. Any worry of her parents thinking it was too fast escaped her. She had forgotten that her own mother wasn't exactly the most conventional person in the world, and her father always supported her anyway.
"Congratulations, Alexis," Johnny said--maybe shouted. His tears were undeniable now. "Oh, Sweetheart, I'm so happy for you." Some laughs came through. "Ted, I know you're going to take good care of my little girl."
"I will, Mr. Rose. I promise," Ted said confidently. "I love her, and I'm excited to join your family."
Moira couldn't handle her delight. She had always been especially fond of Ted, the sweet and loving man he is who would bring them cookies on Christmas. She had seen Alexis's heart break too many time each time they were apart, and was so happy that they were officially permanent.
"As far as I'm concerned, Theodore, you can start being family now if you'd like."
Alexis, Ted, Moira, and Johnny stayed on FaceTime for about another 30 minutes. Alexis and Ted told them how excited they were to be married and have everything be official and about what they were thinking for living arrangements once they decided that it would be safe enough for Alexis--at least--to return to New York. Moira and Johnny talked about trying to find a safe way to make a trip to Schitt's Creek to see the kids. They didn't want to admit it, but they both missed the town as a whole. It gave them their family back and expanded it with, too, with two sons-in-law.
Alexis and Ted had just woken up and were still in Ted's bed doing their morning scrolls on their phones. Alexis had been staying there at least four or five nights a week, and Ted loved having her. The room was a comfortable quiet, and after Alexis was done scrolling through her phone, she put it down and leaned her head onto Ted's shoulder. She loved being here.
Alexis looked up at the ceiling and thought about how vastly her plans had changed but how good her life still was. She couldn't imagine being apart from Ted again. Being together now really solidified the fact that this is who she wanted to spend forever with. Soon, Ted put his phone down.
"Hey, Ted," Alexis began, deciding that she was going to bring up what she had been thinking about.
"Mhm?" Responded Ted, turning to face her a little bit more.
"What happens when all of this is all over? Like, when it's safe for you to do more research-y animal stuff and for me to start working in New York again?"
Ted froze. It was a question that popped into his head often but one that he tried to push away. He didn't know the answer to the question.
"I don't think I can do the whole break-up thing again. Actually, I, like, know I can't," Alexis confessed.
Ted breathed a sigh of relief, happy that she felt the same way he did. "I can't either."
Alexis smiled to herself. "If we're both in this, it can't just be about me. We have to decide where we live together, and it has to be a good look for both of us."
Alexis and Ted were both stumped. They had thought a lot about the whole living situation, and the only difficulty in their relationship was that they wanted so many different things in life. Really, their only similarity was that they wanted each other. The only thing was that Ted could research with animals or work as a vet in New York, but Alexis couldn't do her best work in Schitt's Creek once the world wasn't remote anymore. One positive was that Ted didn't plan on moving back to an island--he was a little bit past that and after two years of living his wildest dream life in a dorm, he felt fulfilled and ready to settle down a little bit more.
"Alexis, you know I'll be happy as long as I'm with you. I can do my job anywhere," Ted stated. He sounded serious, but Alexis wasn't convinced.
"But, Ted, wouldn't you rather do your work somewhere else? You could, like, rebuild your practice here," Alexis said. She was a newly compassionate being who cared fiercely about the ones she loved. Ted's happiness was becoming her own.
"There is so much I could do if you wanted to go back to New York, though, Alexis. There are vet clinics I could work at, I could start my own there, there are some of the best zoos in the country, activist jobs--it's endless," Ted said. "And I can still make some shorter trips down to the Galapagos or some other island no matter where I live." This made Alexis feel better.
"I love Schitt's Creek, I do. I was just, like, thriving in New York, and I want to see where it takes me," she said.
"Then, that's what we'll do."
Alexis loved him so much. There were a few moments of silence as Alexis contemplated expressing her current thoughts out loud.
It's only been two months, she thought. We did just say that we plan on being with each other forever. It's only been two months though, she thought. We did just unofficially agree to New York together once it's safe.
Alexis's thoughts consumed her, but her voice interjected. "Do you ever think about where to go from here?"
Ted looked at her and squinted slightly. "What do you mean."
"Like, we don't plan on breaking up again. We are happiest with each other. We plan on moving to a whole different city together," Alexis tried to clarify.
Ted started to get what she was saying. "So, you mean?"
"We don't have to, but I just...I just thought that if we plan to spend, like, forever together and everything, we could talk about it." Truthfully, after two times rejecting him, Alexis didn't know if Ted would propose again. She had assumed, even in their second attempt, that it would be a conversation for than a grand gesture.
"Alexis, I think I'm clear on what you're saying, but--"
"I think we should, or at least could, maybe think about being engaged," she said more awkwardly than Ted had ever heard her. "We totally don't have to; it's just that we have all these plans, and I have absolutely no doubts, and this is what I've always wanted, and I don't know...I just would like to be married to you."
Ted smiled widely and kissed Alexis's forehead while nodding. "I think that is one of your best ideas...and you have a lot of really great ideas. I love you, Alexis."
"I love you too," Alexis said sincerely, happy that she had spoken her unsure thoughts.
"Hold on just a minute," Ted said as he reached over to his bedside table and opened the drawer before shuffling around and grabbed something. When he faced Alexis, he revealed that he was holding a small velvet, navy blue box. Alexis looked at the possession and then back up at Ted, stunned.
"Ted, is that..."
"I got it right before I left for the Galapagos," he said. "I figured that if we made it through that, then we--or I--would come home, and I could propose to you. I got offered the longer contract, though, which kind of messed it all up." Ted saw that Alexis had unshed tears in her eyes. "I never looked at it after that night in the cafe, and when I got home, I didn't have the heart to do anything with it."
Ted opened the box, revealing the ring, one that Alexis would choose for herself, and Alexis smiled up at him. "Marry me?" he asked, knowing the answer. Alexis laughed at his asking of the question they had already discussed and nodded. Ted slipped the ring onto her finger.
Ted and Alexis spent the rest of their morning slowly getting out of bed and eating breakfast together. They spent the day at Ted's, not wanting to snap out of the trance that they learned was absolute, unconditional love.