I stood in the noisy reception hall feeling extremely childish and lonely. I’d have to give my Maid of Honor speech in a few moments and I was more nervous than I had ever been.
I didn’t get nervous though; so this feeling was really shaking me up. I had always been known to love the spotlight, but this was different, I had to say the right thing, it was their wedding after all.
Bella had looked beautiful, in her simple strapless gown. Her hair was curled and down and the outside wedding had been perfect on this spring day.
I couldn’t complain about how I looked either. Bella’s fashion sense was immaculate, and my dress was really…hot. It was a dark, sexy red that went down to my knees and had a high cut slip. It had spaghetti straps and a v neck. My parents would have never let me worn anything like this, but for the wedding, they let it slide.
But, that was just the dress, me, I didn’t like how I looked, not really. My hair was a dark, dark red, to the point that it could almost pass for brown, almost. I was tan from soccer and I had huge green eyes. When I smiled there were dimples in my cheeks. I was five feet five inches and weighed one hundred seven pounds.
I was too average.
There was nothing that distinguished me from any other girl at school. No special talents even. I loved the spotlight…
But not right now, not as I was getting pulled up to the front of the room where a guitar player shoved a microphone in my hand and the room grew unbearably quiet.
I cleared my throat and began, “Thanks to everyone who came, it means a lot to me, and I know it means a lot to Bella and Mason,” I paused and looked over to where they were sitting. Bella smiled encouragingly at me and Mason winked at me. Their hands were intertwined underneath the table I noticed, and Bella’s face was blushed red from being so excited.
I coughed and then continued, “I remember when they started dating, and how jealous I was that I didn’t have Mason all to me anymore. Emi was young and didn’t understand, but I thought that it wasn’t fair. That was until I met Bella, she is the best older sister I could ever ask for. I love her and Mason entirely. I know they will have a long, lovely life together.”
I finished and saw Mason’s eyes watering; Bella was blowing her nose on a napkin. I figured I had done well and took my seat as the applauding began.
Soon the DJ announced the first dance and after that, many more came. Couples filed out onto the dance floor and I sat, alone at the table to stare at the fun.
Somebody startled me from my misery by tapping my shoulder, “Lauren?” the voice tentatively asked.
“Jayson?” I replied, turning around, “Oh Jayson, you came!”
He laughed, “Of course,”
I stood up and hugged him, he hugged me back. This was not awkward at all in our relationship. He was my best friend and soccer partner for life. We hung out all the time; I just started liking him as more than a friend.
Still, the hug sent a shock through my whole body that lasted as he stepped back and admired me.
“You look…wow,” he said.
I blushed intensely and said, “Why thank you,”
He looked sincerely at me, “May I have this dance Miss?”
“Of course,” I giggled as he led me on to the dance floor.
A slow, lullaby type song was starting and my hands found his broad shoulders amidst the dim room. Even in the darkness though, I could make him out.
He was a whole head taller than me and had awesome leg muscles from soccer. He was tan and had blonde hair that was shaggy and disoriented. His blue eyes were deep and intense and I found myself staring into them often.
Like right now, this moment seemed to intimate for us to just be friends. I knew he felt it too, felt our body heat and the way my hands fit perfectly around his shoulders. His hands were on my lower waist and I found myself subconsciously leaning closer into him, and him letting me.
“Jayson,” I murmured when I had gotten so close that my face was buried in his neck.
“Mmm?” he asked, I found his incoherency extremely cute at the moment.
We were interrupted by a tap on my shoulder and an all too familiar voice saying, “Hope you don’t mind, but I got to dance with my little sister,”
I mumbled something about finding Emi for him, but knew it was no use. Mason led me to a different part of the dance floor and we began dancing.
“Little Lauren’s growing up,” he sighed.
I smiled at him and he continued, “I saw that boy looking at you,”
“Well duh he was looking at me, we were dancing!” I exclaimed.
He laughed, “Yeah yeah, excuses, I think Lauren has a crush,”
I turned red and smacked him playfully.
The song ended and he said he needed to get a dance in with Emi before she got tired. I left him and went to the edge of the dance floor where Jayson was watching me.
“Hey, sorry about Mason he…”
Jayson smiled and reached his hand out as if to take mine, but at the last minute he decided not to, “It’s no big deal, he is your brother after all,”
I sighed and he laughed at me.
“It’s so noisy in here,” I complained as they cranked up the music and began playing a fast song with a lot of drum solos.
“It is,” he agreed, as a drunken woman screamed to the band that they needed to play “Twist and Shout.”
I shook my head at her and Jayson smiled, “You seem a bit stressed?”
I looked at him; there was no point in lying, “The wedding stuff, it kinda got to me, all the planning and speech giving,”
“You want to get some fresh air?” he asked, offering me his hand.
I glanced at it and longed to put my hand inside it, “Yes,” I said softly allowing him to drag me out of the reception hall and into the cool, dark night.