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.My heart stopped as he kissed me and whispered."Our turn next." His eyes reflected the soft light around us.I nodded but didn't say anything because I was overwhelmed and he noticed."I promise it will not be this fancy." He tucked my arm into the crook of his elbow and led me into the house.A flurry of activity greeted us and from that moment on, there was no time to think or breathe for that matter.I enjoyed every minute, but at the end of the evening, I was exhausted.All the guests had left and the newlyweds left for their penthouse suite at the Windsor Court Hotel where they’d be staying until they left on their honeymoon on Tuesday.Michael almost had to carry me upstairs to our room.He helped me to undress and said his good night."Why can't you stay?" I appealed.I knew he wanted to.The fire was evident in his eyes, and in the way, he stroked my face with his fingers.He leaned his forehead against mine and whispered softly, "Because this is the way it should be my love.I want to do this right.I love you Elizabeth.I'll see you for lunch tomorrow.I want you to sleep in.Frederick will have someone bring breakfast up to you.""Okay,” I agreed and then shut the door behind him.I could tell he didn't walk away immediately, but waited and then I heard his footsteps going down the hall.I lay in bed for a long time.My mind was still in overdrive.My pending wedding was foremost in my mind.As the occupants of the house settled down, the noise level abated and I finally was able to drift off to sleep.The chirping of the birds woke me because I hadn't closed the French doors before falling asleep.I heard the rustling of dishes in the hallway, Simone's hushed voice, and a door closing.The staff was delivering breakfast, and I was hungry.I used the intercom phone and Frederick answered instantly.He assured me breakfast would be sent up immediately and he asked if I wanted fresh or dried fruit with my oatmeal.I wrinkled my nose and knew the directive came straight from Michael.Replying I wanted neither and would prefer scrambled eggs, bacon, croissants, and orange juice, there was a distinct pause from Frederick.He quickly recovered though and announced that it would be delivered without a delay.After pressing the off button on the intercom, I chuckled to myself.My sweet Michael, always trying to be in control.After eating, I showered and dressed.Visions of yesterday's ceremony and reception kept floating into my mind.It tugged at my heartstrings seeing Nancy's emotional family.Her father walking her down the aisle made my eyes tear.The more I thought about it, the more it depressed me.I wanted my father to walk me down the aisle.Getting married in another state was denying him the privilege of seeing me married.What was I doing? Why did I agree to go through with this plan? It was absurd.I should have stuck to my decision of a wedding next year.Determined with this thought, I decided to go down to the library and wait for Michael.When he walked into the library and I saw him, my resolve burst.I couldn't postpone the wedding for my selfish reasons.I wanted to be married to him.So, instead I just stood there and started crying.Well, then the crying turned into sobs.I couldn't hold them back.The alarm on Michael's face only made me weep harder."Baby, baby," he wrapped his soothing arms around me."Oh baby, tell me what's wrong.What happened?""Nothing happened," I blubbered."I.I." I stammered, "I want my daddy to walk me down the aisle and he's in California and I'm in stupid old New Orleans.And I'm getting married tomorrow and I'll be walking down the aisle tomorrow by my.my.myself." The tears were running down my cheeks in a flood."Oh baby, you said you wanted a simple, no fuss wedding." He pulled tissues out of his pocket and dabbed at my eyes."Please don't cry, honey.""I do want a simple wedding, but I want my dad here." I blew my nose into the tissues he offered me and then looked up at him with a tear-streaked face.He sighed heavily and pulled his cell phone out of his pocket.He pressed a button and then the speaker button, and to my surprise, my father answered the phone."Hey son," he answered, "What did you forget?""Hi Bob," Michael responded."We’re at Defcon Five," he joked, "I've got you on speaker phone.Tell Elizabeth where you are right now."I could hear him laughing at the other end, "I told you so.I know my daughter too well.Hi Sweet Pea, I'm at the Ritz Carlton with your sister and her husband.We're having a great lunch."A look of confusion covered my face."What? You're down in Laguna Nigel?"Michael rolled his eyes."Bob, tell her what city you're in.""Oh, sorry.Sweet Pea, we're in New Orleans! Do you think for one moment that Michael would let me miss your wedding?""Oh! He's here?" I looked up at Michael and of course, the waterworks began again [ Pobierz całość w formacie PDF ]