Plus One(80)

By: Aleatha Romig

THE STAINED-GLASS WINDOWS cast colorful hues over the congregation as I take a deep breath and steady my stance.

“Don’t faint,” Mike whispers.

I shake my head as Mike and Kevin laugh at their own personal joke.

Shana smiles at us as she steps to her designated maid-of-honor spot.

“You’re supposed to be here supporting me,” I remind both Mike and Kevin in a whisper as the music grows louder and everyone stands.

“Dunc, man. You’ll make this.”

Kevin’s nickname makes me smile as I take in the crowd. My parents are standing at the front pew, smiling approvingly my way. Trevor and his latest girlfriend are seated one row back with Kelli and the kids. In true, unattached-Willis style, my brother’s eyes have been on Shana more than on the woman by his side.

On the other side of the aisle is Judy, her cheeks ready to split from alternating between smiling and crying. She has Grandma Helen beside her on one side and a space for Oscar on the other. Susan and baby Matthew are one row behind. Out farther, I see other familiar faces and many tiny heads. In the last year, Scarlett and Kurt have had a little girl, while Jimmy and Sheila had a boy. Jimmy can’t stop talking about him, and neither can his big sister.

A lump forms in my throat as the door at the back of the church opens and Kimbra and Oscar come into view. It’s my vision from over a year ago, but better. That’s what Kimbra is to me, my every fantasy but more.

My mouth goes dry and pulse races as they come closer. Kimbra is absolutely stunning in her long, flowing white gown, a vision of radiant beauty, better than any model and more spectacular than my imagination. The woman walking my direction is my fantasy and my friend, my past and my future.

With each step, she’s the epitome of a blushing bride. Damn, I love how her cheeks glow. For only a moment, I break eye contact. My chest fills with a deep breath as I take in the scooped neckline of her dress.

Have I mentioned that I love her tits?

When our eyes meet again, Kimbra’s cheeks are even rosier and her smile is knowing.

I lift and drop my shoulders with a smirk.

I have no defense. I’m a man who loves breasts, and my soon-to-be wife has the most perfect ones I’ve ever seen. I’ve heard that they will grow when she’s pregnant. For that reason alone, adding another little one to this family would be worth it.

The music stops as she and Oscar halt before me.

The pastor’s voice fills the church. “Who gives this woman to be wed?”

Oscar looks from Kimbra to me and back. “With great pride, her mother and I.” He lifts his daughter’s hand from his arm and places it in my open palm. “She’s my everything, son. I’m trusting you.”

I nod. “I’ll do my best.”

“If I doubted you, we wouldn’t be here.”

It’s maybe the most I’ve ever heard Oscar say at one time. I know that I won’t let him down.

Kimbra smiles and shrugs. “Sorry,” she mouths.

Tucking her hand close, I shake my head. There’s nothing to be sorry about. Oscar is right. Only now, Kimberly Ann Jones is my everything, too.

I turn to Mike as he hands me one small white lily. It’s the one part of the ceremony we didn’t practice. I couldn’t let this pass without another flower for our bouquet. With a smirk, I add the lily to her already beautiful bouquet. “Our first wedding,” I whisper.

Her eyes glow as her smile grows. “Our only.”

The pastor begins. The rest of the ceremony is everything I expect all the way until the reception. Our dinner is complete and toasts are about to begin when I spy Grandma Helen walking our way. I nudge Kimbra. “Here she comes.”

“Oh, no,” she says as the pink that I love fills her cheeks.

Grandma Helen’s smile grows as she bounces on the balls of her feet, obviously excited and proud of what she’s about to do. “When I heard you’d chosen mint as one of your colors, I was worried. But then…” She reaches into her giant purse. “…I learned that mint really means blue-green. And you know that Amazon has lots of color choices and with Prime…”

My smile grows as Kimbra’s cheeks continue to redden.


Grandma Helen hands Kimbra the package. “I wrapped it.”

It doesn’t matter. We both know what’s inside.

She winks and leans close. “Be sure to come and see me before you leave on your honeymoon. I have batteries in this purse somewhere.” She smiles at me. “I bought a whole pack. You can thank me later.”

As she walks happily away, I take the package. Squeezing the surface, I try to decipher the shape and size.