It was a marvelous start to what would be an amazing day—or so we thought. On our way to the big occasion, everyone was excited, twitching nervously in their seats. We couldn’t wait for what was to come within the next couple hours. We hurried our way to the church so we could beat the guests and squeeze in last minute adjustments for the service. The bride was on her way (supposedly), and I had the flower girl buckled up in the back of my sedan. Besides a slight case of butterflies, everything was going smoothly.
Once we reached our destination, it was exactly what we had imagined. Amazingly, the bride was already in the restroom finishing up her makeup, while the groom paced the front of the church nervously. The pews were decorated with flowers crowning each row, daintily draping down a curled ribbon. The church had a cozy glow that welcomed every family member and close friend that slowly began to flow into the church.
Looking back, the morning couldn’t have gone better. The bride was beautiful, the groom was just the right amount of nervous, and the flower girl didn’t run off with the ring. What more could you ask for? Everything went according to plan, and I couldn’t have been happier for Ryan, my best friend since third grade. He’d met the girl of his dreams, and she was perfect with his daughter. Lauren was honest, sincere, loving, hard-working, and an amazing homemaker. He was set. My face hurt from smiling as I observed him watching her walking down the aisle. A smile that broke into a couple tears highlighted his face, and I won’t lie, I teared up a little too.
It was a beautiful moment that we had anticipated for months, years even, as the two were inseparable within weeks of first dating. I wish the beauty of that moment continued as I made my way to the reception.
I got into the car, and for some reason, I had a gut feeling that I shouldn’t take Maya, the flower girl, with me.
“Hey, I think you should go in the limo. How often do you get to ride in one of those?” I’m glad she didn’t protest.
As I headed to the venue, I made a quick trip downtown to pick up a surprise for Ryan and Lauren. Turning onto Main Street, I gazed down the road in front of me, and my pupils widened as I tried to take in what I saw. A black truck whipped around the corner, and the middle-aged man behind the wheel returned my look of panic. My world stopped. He immediately knew he messed up and tried to fix the situation by slamming on his brakes. Despite his efforts, his car still sped forward. Something was wrong. I swerved to my right, trying my best not to sideswipe the car that was itching to pass me in that lane. Unfortunately, our cars clashed, and the front of my car was pushed back into the truck’s range. I could see he was just as in shock as I was, still trying to slam down on his brakes.
Being hit on the back of my passenger side and front driver side, my entire car was turned around. Just as suddenly as the situation unfolded, it all came to a sudden stop. From an ear-deafening commotion to an eerie quiet, I sat still. My ears were buzzing in response to the combination of metal crashing against metal and the shock resulting from the situation. I could hear my heartbeat, and I’m sure the crowd gathering in the sidewalks could too. I looked down and wiped my face shakily. Grabbing my arms, I pressed into my skin seeing if my bones were still whole. I felt a sharp twang in my neck but was able to limp out of the car. Thankfully, it was my car that took most of the impact and not me.
The man in the truck immediately ran up to me apologizing, “My brakes gave out man, I’m sorry I couldn’t stop. Man, I’m so sorry!” All I could do was shake my head.
“Someone called the cops,” a stranger consoled me as I sat down on the curb. Another person offered me a water bottle.
I was okay, but the wedding… “I can’t tell anyone,” was the only thought in my mind, “at least not now.” I looked up at my car, or what I thought was my car.
“Bummer…” was all I could muster as I shook my head. Short thoughts burst into my mind as I tried to gather what had just happened to me: it was his fault. Main Street’s a one-way. It wasn’t me. It’s totaled. Man, the wedding. They can’t know. Ryan would freak out.
I could hear the police sirens coming closer.
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