I am once again super excited to participate in this Flash Fiction Chain hosted by Jithin of PhoTrablogger. The following parts are inspired by the above image.
Character List :
Anna Brighton-a 32 year old publisher
Alex Burns- a well established author and Anna’s childhood friend
Jenny- Anna’s personal secretary
Melissa Doyle – Anna’s neighbor and close friend
Read the previous part before venturing this part.
Now onto Part 2
Melissa was three years younger than Anna and although they didn’t end up in the same school until Anna was senior, they were always the closest outside school. They often joked they were sisters from different parents. Whenever Anna or Melissa’s parents needed to go out, they would drop the girls at each other’s houses, letting them play while their parents went about their business. In fact, that was probably how Anna’s parents found out about the wedding. Melissa’s parents were probably ecstatic and told the whole neighborhood.
The afternoon after Anna’s dad’s phone call, she arrived on the Blackwell Estate. The estate belonged to Toby Blackwell’s parents, a boy used to live just down the street from Melissa and Anna. They moved after Mr. Blackwell scored big selling some stocks that had quadrupled from when he purchased it.
At arrival, Anna glanced at the castle-like property. “Whoa,” she couldn’t help to admire the magnificent house. It was way nicer than her apartment in the city, that was sure. As she pulled up to the front door, she was greeted by a valet. Snatching her Gucci purse on the passenger seat, Anna pulled the key out of the ignition and stepped out of her red Mercedes. “Please be careful with that.” She tossed the keys to the valet as she strutted up the steps.
“Anna!” Melissa hurried down the hall to greet Anna. She grabbed Anna’s arms and air-kissed her. “Mwah Mwah.”
Anna frowned a little as Melissa pulled back. That was odd, she thought. Since when did her friend become so… matured? She examined Melissa. One look at her outfit and Anna thought she looked more like a card-playing housewife than a young woman about to married her childhood sweetheart. Melissa chuckled. “What?”
“Nothing. It’s just – it’s been a long time since we last saw each other, that’s all. Wow, you’ve changed.”
Melissa arched her brow. “Have I?”
Anna took her friend’s hand and smiled. “In a good way.”
She sighed, suddenly seemed deflated. “I guess.”
“Everything’s a mess. My maid of honor bailed, my dress is still at the tailor, and the wedding’s tomorrow. What am I going to do?” She leaned her head against Anna’s shoulder like she had done when they were young. For a moment, Anna felt uncomfortable. Then awkwardly, she gently patted Melissa’s head.
“Everything’s going to be okay.” She assured her friend.
Melissa sniffed and looked up at her. “Really?” Anna nodded. Together, they walked down the hallway, through the sun room and into the garden where it was prepped for the wedding. They sat down at one of the tables. “So I was wondering, do you want to be my maid of honor? You know since she bailed and all?”
Anna blinked. She haven’t really thought about participating in such big role at the wedding. She stared at Melissa for a moment. There was so much excitement yet sadness in her eyes. She couldn’t say no. “Oh what the heck, I’m in.” Melissa shrieked and instantly threw her arms around her.
A few minutes later, a man set a tray of tea between them. At first, Anna thought he was the butler but Melissa informed her that they were prepping for tomorrow and Toby’s family had paid them extra to take care of her. The aroma from the tea was so pungent that Anna’s eyes widened in surprise after one whiff. She quickly set her cup down. “Oh, I almost forgot.” Melissa set her cup on the table. “I know you’re not the blind-dating type but I have found someone so perfect for you.”
“Melissa, I” Anna began but Melissa cut her off.
“He’s Toby’s cousin and he will be here tomorrow.” She shrieked. “His name is Alexis and I can’t wait for you to meet him. Maybe you’ll even fall head over heel and get married. Then we’ll have a double wedding!” She shrieked shrillingly.
“Great. Yeah, absolutely.” Anna said with as much enthusiasm as she could muster but on the inside, she was dreading it. Why does everyone want her to get married? What is it about marriage that all her friends are jumping into it? Five months ago was Zoey, three months ago, Clara, heck, even Jenny got hitched a month ago and she’s only 22. Maybe Anna just isn’t seeing the joy in marriage.
That night, she tossed and turned, having one nightmare after another, afraid she might mess up the wedding being the maid of honor and meeting her blind-date, Alexis. Early next morning, she stumbled to the in-suite bathroom and looked into a mirror. She yawned and stretched. She looked like a sleepless ghost. How was she supposed to do this maid of honor thing today?
A knock on the door made her jump. “Anna,” Melissa called on the other side of the door, “Alexis is here.”
“Okay, be right there.” She quickly threw on a top and jeans, ran the brush through her hair several times, and strutted out of her room, as composed as she could manage but when she saw the man posing nonchalantly next to Melissa, she froze in her track. Alex?