I look weird in a suit. That's near enough my only thought as I stare at myself in the mirror. Alex had de-hangover-ified me at home and pretty much the moment we were off the plane, he got me into that suit. He made the mistake of leaving me to do the tie while he hunted down the cufflinks, though. I jumped out of my skin as he yelled that I'd done the wrong knot. As if I wasn't already scared enough. Once I was into it, he left me with my mum, who said she wanted to sort out my hair. She did a pretty good job of it, if I'm honest, but that doesn't stop me looking weird.
Mum puts a hand on my shoulder, standing beside me in the mirror, looking a little tearful, actually. I'm still too busy trying to decide if I look retarded in a suit or not, to listen to her rambling about how proud she is and how much she regrets ever losing contact with me. I stare at the jet black jacket, wondering if it's too long, and the dark blue waistcoat under it, wondering if that made me look like I had a beer belly, and the tie, wondering if the waistcoat looked okay with the lighter blue tie. It's not exactly a fancy suit - no embroidery or anything - but it's nice. I just can't help thinking it would look better on someone else.
I do my best to ignore the little voice at the back of my head reminding me just how terrified I've been all the way up to today. It's hard. Needless to say, Alex slapped a nicotine patch on my arm before making me get dressed. I mean, I'm nervous, and I'm sure as soon as I leave the room, the whole terror of it will hit me like a high speed train, but until then...
Granddad comes in to inspect the suit.
"Dad!" mum protests.
"What? I'm impatient. I wanna see how the guy looks before he's pounced on by the photographer." I turn and face him, smiling a little at his faithful old suit. I've lost count of how many years he's had that thing, but he won't be persuaded to buy a new one. He gives me a quick look, and a sort of approving nod. "I'll see you outside." Thanks for the words of encouragement there, granddad.
Alex bounds in as he leaves and announces that Hadley's good to go.
"Got the ring?" mum asks him. He pats his pocket and grins.
"C'mon, don't keep him waiting."
Granddad drives dad to the venue ahead of us in some hire car that he doesn't seem to understand, and Alex drives us there, my mum sat in the back, trying to fix her make up from all the crying she did while I was getting ready. I stare out of the window, a stress ball that Alex found in my hands. When I'm nervous, I fiddle with my clothes and he's determined that I won't destroy my suit before I even get there.
Part of me can't wait to get down the aisle with him and get those rings on our fingers.
The other, rather worryingly large part of me? Yeah, he's trying to figure out how I can slip away unnoticed and run the fuck away.