The Damsel's Wedding

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Humor  |  House: Fantasy Realm

A short story I wrote for a college assignment, but I submitted a different story instead. A rushed and cliché humor/romance/super hero story about a reporter marrying a villain instead of the hero who rescues her. My original goal was something more developed, but I wasn't paying attention to my assignment's word limit and I had to rush the ending. However, I still had fun writing this and I may explore a more fleshed out version of this story in a future novel.

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Mary May finishes getting ready for the day. Breakfast: check, suit: check, phone: fully charged. As she enters her living room, she sees that her fiance, Susan Sly, is already dressed for work, adorned in her bright red suit and skull shaped biker’s helmet.

Susan, seeing Mary enter, turns to her and asks, “Zip or bag?” 

“Bag”

“You sure? I’m gonna have to zip ya’ later, anyway” 

Mary shrugs. “I could use a nap” 

“Okay then. Ya’ know the drill” 

Susan pulls out a large burlap sack and opens it on the floor. Mary steps into its center and waits until she is fully submerged, the sack is tied, and her vision fades to black. 

“Steady?”, Susan asks. 

Muffled, Mary responds, “Yeah… the cushioned bag still not show up?” 

Susan grunts a small laugh. “Yeah, sorry. Not many custom orders for this stuff” 

Mary sighs, but snuggles into the sack anyway, shifting and complaining the whole time. 

Fifteen minutes later, as Susan hops off her helicopter with Mary bagged and slung over her shoulders, a line of purple suited figures in standard biker helmets walk up to escort them. The fortress atop the volcano of the island stark white against the black ash below. 

As they enter the railed path suspended above the lava, Susan asks, “So… are we going to tell him today?” 

Mary, still in the bag, does not respond. 

“Em, come on. Ya’ know the rule-” 

“Yeah, yeah, I can still breathe, don’t worry. It's not like what happened at Everest” 

Susan waits a moment. Then another. She passes the blast door of the elevator and pushes the skull shaped button before trying again.

“So… again, are we going to tell him or what?” 

Mary groans. “Sue, do we have to do this today? Can’t we just wait ‘till we’re back home?” 

“Em, you always say that! Then it's always, ‘Babe, I’m tired… can’t this wait till the morning?’ and you keep putting it off!” 

The elevator doors open and they walk into a large chamber overlooking the caldera below. A large laser gun covered in spikes and crackling with electricity thrums above them, pointed at a chair in the room’s center. 

Susan opens the bag, letting Mary step out and start to strap herself into the restraints of the chair. 

“Well, it’s just… hard, okay!?”, Mary says, struggling to fasten the restraints. 

Susan brushes Mary’s hand away and gently ties the rest of the straps. “I get it, but our wedding is just a month and a half away. You were fine telling your parents, why is this any different?”

“You know why! Hero-Man’s been into me since high school. What if he gets mad?” 

“HM has died, like, three times at least. The guy has flown inside a nuke inside a black hole. He can handle some rejection” 

“...I guess. I just… it's just scary, okay?”, Mary tears up. She reaches to hide her face, but her hands, still restrained, can’t reach. 

“Hey! Hey it's okay”. Susan reaches down and wraps her arms around her crying fiance. “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to push so hard. Ya’ don’t have to tell him if ya’ don’t want to, okay?” 

Mary nods, resting her head against Susan’s shoulder as she leans over her. 

“I… I don’t think anyone’s ever told him no before, you know? He’s never been… off or violent or angry or anything… but it's just scary thinking about, like...what if?”

Susan takes off her helmet and kisses Mary on the forehead. “It’s okay… I doubt he’s like that, and he will find out eventually… but you don’t have to tell him, okay?” 

Mary nods again, tears beginning to dry. 

Susan abruptly pipes up, “Besides, if he did try anythin’, I’d kick his ass” 

Mary chokes a laugh. “Oh, that why you and your boss haven’t won yet?” 

“Hey! I’ll have you know I’ve been holding back. Don’t want to make big bad Lord Vee look worse than he does already” 

Mary admires her fiance’s face and replies “Yeah? And how did he take the news?” 

Susan slaps herself in the forehead. “Shit! I knew I forgot to ask ya’ something!” 

“What?” 

“He says he wants to officiate” 

Mary stares blankly for a moment. “He… that was his response?” 

“Yeah. Ya’ know he loves theatics. Pretty sure he’s gonna kidnap the wedding planner” 

“Oh my god… he's going to make such a show of it” 

As they continue to chat, an explosion rings above them. Gunshots and shouts echo throughout the lair. Beneath them, a giant robot dragon emerges from the lava and streaks towards the sky. They ignore this, knowing their shift is going to end early, and continue to talk about the wedding, who else to invite, and whether or not Susan would make the better supervillain.

That night, Susan waits at their apartment. She paces around the living room, darting to the window every other second. She checks the window, paces, checks her phone, checks the window, etc, until her heart stops as the front door clicks open. 

Mary, walking in, shuts the door behind her and almost collapses as Susan runs into her, scoops her up, and tightly hugs her. 

“Uh, clingy much?”, Mary snorts. 

“Oh… sorry”, she apologizes as she puts Mary back on her feet. 

Mary walks over to the couch, plops down, and checks her email. 

“Oh, goody. The chief already wants a report on my daring exploits”, she mouths the last two words in mock irritation. 

Susan sits down next to her. She lounges there, silently, her brow furrowed. 

“Em?” 

“Yeah?” 

“How’d  it go?” 

Mary looks up from her phone. “The flight? I guess the same. Terrifying but relaxing… or maybe relaxing but terrifying? Not sure what fits best” 

“I mean… did ya’...?”

“Oh!”, Mary exclaims, “No… I didn’t tell him… are… are you mad?” 

“No!”, Susan speaks up without hesitation. “I am not mad”, she sits upright and gets closer to Mary. 

“Sue?” 

“After what you said earlier… I’m kinda glad ya’ didn’t”, she takes Mary by the hands. “I never realized… he made ya’ scared. He’s been the one to bring ya’ home this whole time. I didn’t even process the weight of all that ‘till he came and flew ya’ off” 

“Sue, it’s fine, I was just overreacting-” 

“It’s not fine. Even when ya’ were first kidnapped by Lord Vile, before he started paying ya’, ya’ didn’t cry at all. Hell, ya’ even cussed him out!” 

“Yeah, I don’t take nobody’s nonsense without a fight”

“And I love that about ya’. But I want ya’ to be honest with me, okay? Not just about ya’ job or ya’ lawsuit to make being a damsel a paid position… but about what ya’ feeling” 

“I mean, I’ve been open with you, you are the one who took so long to get out of that shell of yours” 

“...I know. I know I took the longest to open up. I’m sorry. But now that I know that- that steroid pumped space jock has been making ya’ scared… it makes me scared” 

Mary snuggles up to Susan and starts to stroke her hair. “I’m sorry. I know I should’ve told you sooner… we’ve been dating for three years and it just- I was ashamed” 

“Of what?” 

“Of being scared of everybody’s hero. When so many people look up to him, idolize him… I thought maybe people- you even- might think I was being paranoid. Tell me to get over it” 

“Em-” 

“And, again, he’s basically a god, Sue! If he wasn’t so dense, he could take on the world. Remember when H&M tried to sue him for his logo? What did he do?” 

“He blew them up-” 

“HE OBLITERATED the CEO's office. No one challenged him on it. The media went dead quiet. He can… he can get away with anything”

“...Em?” 

“...Yeah?” 

“Has he… has he ever done anything to you?” 

“...” 

Sue’s eyes darken like the clouds of a rising storm. 

“No… I’ve kept him off… he just thinks I’m shy. I think he’s waiting for me. That's why I’m scared. I don’t know how much longer he’ll wait”

They both go quiet for a while. They sit there, comforting one another. 

Mary eventually falls asleep, leaning onto her fiance’s lap. 

Sue doesn’t fall asleep. Not that night. Instead, she stares up at the ceiling. Thinking. Scheming. 

“If he tries anything… I will kick his ass” 

A month and a half later, atop a floating steampunk castle above the mediterranean, the wedding begins. 

Heroes, villains, reporters, family members, and friends alike all sit in an auditorium built on one of the outside walls of the castle. Magic Ma’am, a legendary hero and magician from the 1940s is performing magic tricks and special effects for the wedding. Sergeant Seattle, the Seattle themed hero, is performing music with Phantom Mercury, Freddie Mercury’s ghost turned vigilante. 

Numerous other powers, magic, and tech are on display, lighting the castle with a swath of conflicting colors, sound, and aesthetics bursting from the attendants. 

But, all goes quiet as a shadow erupts from the center of the stage, a burst of purple and red fire swirling together to form a black suit of armor shaped like a skeleton. 

“SILENCE!”, the creature’s voice booms across the stage like thunder. 

“I, LORD DOCTOR VICTOR VON VILE, WELCOME YOU… TO THE WEDDING OF THE CENTURY!” 

Stepping onto the stage, Mary May appears in a finely woven scarlet red suit.

From the aisle, Susan Sly ascends from the staircase in a bright pink dress with much embroidery and flower prints. 

From the audience, one of the attendants finds this contrast from her normal style funny and laughs, but is quickly shut up by the burning glare of dozens of superpowered villains and heroes.

The ceremony continues as Susan makes her way to the center of the stage, facing Mary. 

Mary smiles and says, “You’re like the sun” 

“How? Cause it hurts to look at me?” 

“Cause I couldn’t live without you” 

Lord Doctor Victor Von Vile, who will be referred to as Lord Vee going forward, speaks up and shouts, “VILE HEATHENS, HERETICS, AND FALSE HEROES. WE ARE GATHERED HERE TODAY TO JOIN MY RIGHT HAND, DOCTOR PUNK ROCK”, he gestures towards Susan. 

Mary laughs, as she can never take that villain name seriously. 

Susan rolls her eyes, but is focused only on the face across from her. 

“AND MY FORMER OFFICIAL DAMSEL, SOON TO BE PROMOTED TO MY PR MANAGER, IN THE MOST NEFARIOUS OF SCHEMES: MARRIAGE!” 

A helmeted minion in the audience starts crying and yells, “WOO!” 

“DO YOU, DOCTOR SUSAN SLY, AKA DOCTOR PUNK ROCK, TAKE MARY MAY TO BE Y-YOUR”, he chokes on the next word, but presses on, “L-LAWFULLY WEDDED WIFE?” 

“Duh” 

“AND DO YOU, MARY MAY, TAKE DOCTOR SUSAN SLY, AKA DOCTOR PUNK ROCK, TO BE YOUR L-LAWFULLY WEDDED WIFE?” 

“Who else?” 

“THEN BY THE POWERS STOLEN BY ME, I PRONOUNCE YOU-” 

BOOM. A thunderclap reverberates through the castle, the entire foundation shaking from the impact. Standing in a crater at the edge of the aisle, Hero-Man strides in, his white cape swaying behind him. 

Immediately, Susan jumps in front of Mary, shielding her with an arm. 

Hero-Man sees this and calls out, “Just what do you think you all are doing?” 

Lord Vee responds, “...A WEDDING-” 

“I didn’t ask you, edge-lord!” 

With a flick of his thumb, Hero-Man launches Lord Vee into space. The heroes and villains in attendance gasp, but they do nothing. 

“Mayflower, what is this? Trying to get attention?”

Mary stammers, “I-I tried to tell you-” 

“Tell me what? That you were just leading me along? I have been NOTHING but patient with you! And this? THIS is what I get in return?” 

“We weren’t even together… I tried to explain-” 

“Oh, bullshit we weren’t!”, he steps forward, trying to get closer to Mary. 

But Susan stands in his way. 

“Get out of my way” 

“Or what?”, Susan sneers. 

“I’ll force you” 

Mary, tears beginning to form in her eyes, says, “Sue, please just do what he says” 

“Don’t worry, Em”, Susan replies, not looking away from HM for a second, “I’ll handle it” 

Hero-Man shakes his head and lifts his fist forward. “Don’t worry, I’ll go easy on you” 

He fires a punch at Susan, a weak one by his standard, but the force alone cracks the stone beneath them and causes a tremor throughout the stage. 

But Susan stands still, not even moving a budge by the fist connecting with her nose. 

At this, Hero-Man steps back. “How-” 

Susan laughs. A long, cackling, maniacal laugh.

“Answer me!”, Hero-Man screams. He fires piercing red lasers from his eyes… that do nothing to Susan, like he was just playing with a laser pointer. 

As her laughter subsides, Susan smiles and says, “My turn”, and slams her fist into his forehead, knocking him over and planting his face into the ground.

He stands up and yells, “You b-”, but then stops as he feels the trickle of blood flow down from his nose. 

“I- I can’t bleed… I’m… I’m invincible-” 

“Maybe ya’ were born with power”, Susan interrupts, “But I had to fucking earn it”. She steps forward. 

He steps back. 

“Maybe people forget this, but my name, DOCTOR Punk Rock? That ain't just a title. I am a biologist. A chemist. And do ya’ know what I’ve been doing with those skills? Studying you. Your strengths. Your weaknesses. Your biology. Your chemistry. And it took some bitter work and some painful experiments, but I made myself stronger” 

As she declares this, her eyes glow red, and she floats an inch off the ground.

“But- that’s- that’s not fair!” 

“Oh”, Susan laughs, “It's not fair that I made myself stronger? While you’ve been swinging your powers around since you were a damn toddler?” 

Susan kneels down and whispers to him, “Get over yourself, and get out of my damn sight” 

Hero-Man, for a moment, opens his mouth to say something. But he looks into Susan’s eyes and for the first time in his life, he stops himself. He feels afraid. 

He stands up, turns to see the audience staring at him and cries, “STOP STARING AT ME!”, and rockets off into the sky. 

Susan turns back to Mary, anticipating her to step away, look at her in disgust, or show any other indication of fear or hatred. 

But all she sees is Mary, wide-eyed, mouth agape and crying. 

They embrace, holding onto each other like letting go meant death for the other. In time, Lord Doctor Victor Von Vile appears from a puff of smoke and the wedding continues. The ceremony lost some of its previous joyful atmosphere, but when the married couple returned home together, Susan felt more powerful than she had ever felt in her entire life. And Mary felt truly safe for the first time in years.

 


Submitted: July 10, 2021

© Copyright 2021 G.P.Sharp. All rights reserved.

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GilbertZenner

intriguing short story that you have written with great skill

Tue, July 20th, 2021 11:36am

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