Cuarenta y Uno

Today was bridesmaid day. Gabrielle was to have two bridesmaids, Alba (also matron of honour) and Danica, and two flower girls, Liljana and Soffie.

Alba picked her up in her car and they drove down to the station.

“Have you chosen a venue yet?” Alba queried excitedly.

“We like two of each in particular; I was meaning to consult you about it actually. There’s St James’ church, or the little chapel – Mary Virgin.”

“How many people do you know that you would need a big church? I’d say Mary Virgin. It’s so pretty, perfect really for you two.”

“Okay. So for a reception, we could either go to Highfold house, you know just out in the country, not too far but quite expensive for our budget. Or there’s Routhend. It’s a better price but not so nice, and in the city.”

“Go for Highfold. And if it’s stretching your money, I’ll pay a third of it.”

“No, no! I can’t ask you to do that!”

“It’s your big day, go and enjoy it!”

Gabrielle stared at Alba for a few seconds, then attempted to hug her… which didn’t work. After that they chatted until they reached the station.


Liljana walked casually towards Gabrielle, attempting to look cool, then gave up the effort, grinned, and threw her arms around Gabrielle’s neck. Just thirteen, Lil was almost as tall as Gabrielle. Following Liljana shyly, was five year old Soffie. Gabrielle bent down and hugged her too. Then Danica appeared; not far off thirty, Danica was now taller and more elegant than she had ever been, and more than anything, more beautiful. The old friends hugged and exchanged excited squeals.

On arriving in the town centre, Alba suggested a wedding shop on Red Lane that she had heard had a wide variety of all sorts of wedding outfits. When they god there, no one came to assist them but they started looking around the warehouse-style shop anyway.

First, Alba found a sweet, pale pink satin dress but it didn’t go with either her or Danica’s complexions. The next thing Danica found, was a simple navy ship dress but It didn’t do any favours for Alba and wasn’t nearly smart enough for what they wanted.

Eventually they gave up in that shop and moved on to a smaller one further away from the centre (but not before buying some shoes for Liljana and Soffie.

The next shop was smaller and as they entered, a thin woman in her late forties or fifties rushed up to them and started questioning them.

“So what is it you’re looking for?”

“Bridesmaid dresses” Gabrielle was uncertain.

“Any preferences?” The woman was slightly concerned at the lack of detail.

“Smart. Flattering, but simple.” Gabrielle blurted.

“Yeah not too fancy. A good shape.” Danica added.

“Oh, and not navy or pale pink!” was Alba’s comment.

“Oh wand we need something for the girls too.” Danica reminded.

The woman led them around the shop, picking out certain styles and colours.

“So, what did you like best?”

“I think I liked the green ones best. I don’t want one that’s too short, but not too long so they can’t walk either.”

“I’ll see what I can find.”

The woman picked out three dresses, one emerald that almost fit the description, one vine that was short but not too short and one almost lime with a bow at the back.

While Alba and Danica tried them on, the woman tried to find something for Liljana and Soffie. Instantly Liljana found a little dress, the same vine colour as the bigger one. The knee length, thick-strapped taffeta dress suited her well and a smaller one looked good on Soffie too.

But at the same time –

“It’s too tight!” Alba squirmed

“And quite short!” Danica squealed.

Gabrielle sighed, sitting back down on the stool, and told them to take them off, and so the search continued.

“I think a better colour would be red. It would suit you girls okay, and compliment Gabrielle beautifully.”

Everyone agreed and the search started all over again, for the perfect red dress.


In the office, Herman received a cream envelope. He sliced it open and slid out the paper, cream like the envelope, lined with a Winnie the Pooh symbol in the bottom right corner.

Dearest Hermann,

My father and I used to fantasise about me getting married. We would imagine him walking me up the aisle, slowly, my in a floaty princess dress, and him in a smart suit with full tails and a pink cravat.

As you know, my father recently passed away, and our dreams of him walking me down the aisle with it. We’ve been best friends for a few years. I was thinking, recently, ‘Who better to walk me down the aisle, than a friend?’

So here comes the important bit. I want you (yes you) to give me away. Will you?

Love Gabrielle.

The End

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