I look to the right, seeing Jessica standing, beaming with pride, and I nod my head. “Wow, this is surreal,” I say right off the bat, looking at all my peers. “I’m speechless. On my way here, my mother looked over at me in the car and asked me if I had something prepared. I looked at her and said it will never happen, and if it does, I’m going to wing it.” The crowd laughs. “I want to congratulate the other four guys in the category.” I look down at the gold man in my hand. “I have to thank Ryan for giving me a chance so long ago and then being there every step of the way. Especially when he came to me with this script.” I swallow. “Everyone associated with this movie. I don’t want to name anyone in case I forget someone.” Everyone laughs. “I guess I should have written a little note.” I look out into the audience and then to the front at my girl. “To my parents, who are always proud of me no matter how many stupid things I do.” I know the time is running out, but I don’t care. “And finally, to Jessica.” I look over at her as she wipes tears from her eyes. “For loving me with everything that you are. For holding my hand at night, every night. For being my best friend, for listening to my fears and my dreams. Before I go, I have to share a funny story with you,” I start, and I suddenly get nervous. “Tonight when we were getting ready for this huge thing, the jeweler comes over with a ring that I wanted her to wear for the night. She had seven people around her, making sure she was ready and in place. I put it on her left hand and rushed her out of the room without a word . . . so I really, really hope that tonight when we get back home, and I get down on one knee and beg her to be with me forever that she’ll accept to keep the ring and me forever.” I raise the Oscar with one hand. “Thank you for taming Hollywood’s Playboy, Jess.” I look at her, and she looks down at her hand. I don’t think she really noticed the five-carat ring until right then. I walk down the stairs to her and kiss her. “I love you,” I tell her. “Marry me.” She doesn’t say anything; she just nods her head, and they are ready to usher me to the back to talk to the press. “I’m not going anywhere without you,” I tell her, and she grabs my hand and walks behind stage with me. One hand holds an Oscar, the other hand holding hers, and I can say that without a doubt this has to be the best day of my life.
Until nine months later when she gives birth to our first son.
THE END . . .