This week’s Free Fiction Friday story from UnWrecked Press is “Mother of the Bride” (just in time for wedding season… heh heh heh).
UPDATE: Now that the free week is over, you can read the rest of this story by downloading an ebook from Amazon or Smashwords. Then you can read it on your laptop, desktop, Kindle, iPad, Nook, iPhone, or whatever device you use to read ebooks.
I wrote this particular piece of nastiness many moons ago, for a contest based on an image of a zombified bride in a white wedding dress. It was first published at Horrorfind in July 2002. Apologies to all mothers in the South in advance…
Mother of the Bride
The knocking started again. It was the groom, and he wanted to see her. I checked the lock on the bedroom door and ignored him, touching the perfectly molded shape of my hairdo. Smoothing down the powder-blue front of my new dress, I hoped my makeup covered the scar on my chin. I told myself again, for the twentieth time that night, that I didn’t need a nip from my flask to calm me.
The groom was shouting through the door now. Didn’t he know a lady needs her time to prepare for a night like tonight? Impatient little bastard—impatient little Yankee. He wasn’t going to ruin my perfect night.
My nails were a wreck. I’d started biting them the second we agreed to let that light-in-the-loafers fellow design and decorate Angel’s cake. Someone in the Yankee’s family had suggested him. Who would ever agree to a champagne waterfall spilling off a three-tier cake? For the past few days all I’ve had to eat was my pride, with a dessert of fingernails and a bourbon chaser.
I was about to go out of my head from that knocking.
I picked up my corsage, a white rose with baby’s breath, the one thing the senile old biddy at the florist got right. I didn’t even want to think of the mangled mess Angel’s bouquet turned out to be, full of dying carnations and limp Gerber daisies. Carnations! It made me want to scream.
I stepped into my shoes and looked at myself, trying not to see the tiny notch in my chin from that day in May. I held my breath and heard the Yankee talking hysterically on the phone.
When I glanced around the room, I noticed them. A dozen red roses on bureau. I tried to remember if I’d seen them there before. To refresh my spotty memory, I read the bent and tattered card: “Love forever, from now to the end of time.” I felt tears sting my eyes.
“Stop,” I commanded, looking at the old, weak-willed woman in the mirror with tears dripping down her cheeks. My mascara was ruined, but that could be easily fixed. Everything could still be fixed. We’ll still be able to celebrate.
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