And Never a Bride
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This is the sequel to my story “Always a Bridesmaid.” This story is meant to stand on its own, but I invite you to read “Bridesmaid” as well.
I ended the call and let out a deep sigh. Hannah, my roommate, chuckled at me.
“Oh my god, Kiki, you’re actually gonna do it,” she said. “I thought you swore you’d never be a bridesmaid again after the Fiasco in Phoenix.’
“I pretty much have to do it,” I said. “Samantha’s my cousin. The whole family’s gonna be mad at me if I say no.”
“Is Bridezilla Kimberly gonna be there?” Hannah asked.
“She’s the maid of honor,” I said. Hannah laughed hard at that one.
“Oh dear god,” she said. “This just keeps getting better. You poor thing.”
Kimberly, aka Bridezilla, had become sort of my nemesis. My cousin Samantha, maid of honor at Kimberly’s wedding four months earlier, had convinced me to be a last-minute stand-in as a bridesmaid, but Kimberly had taken an immediate dislike to me. She had berated and humiliated me, not once but twice, during the events leading up to the wedding.
Hannah knew that part of the wedding story, as well as the part about my self-humiliation in throwing myself at a handsome stranger who turned out to be gay, and the two horny businessmen who’d hit me up in the hotel bar about letting them try double penetration on me. Hence the name “Fiasco in Phoenix” that I had bestowed upon that dreadful weekend.
What Hannah didn’t know about that weekend, what I hadn’t told her or anyone else, was the most important part: that I’d slept with Marcus, Kimberly’s groom-to-be, less than 12 hours before the wedding.
That, more than anything else, was the real reason for my initial hesitation to join my cousin Samantha’s wedding. I knew Marcus would be there, and I really didn’t know how I was going to handle it when I saw him again. But I had just told Samantha I’d be there for her, so I would have to find a way.
Hannah had gone into our apartment’s kitchen for a moment, but now she was back. She was carrying two shot glasses and a half-full bottle of expensive whiskey left behind by one of her ex-boyfriends.
“Oh god, no,” I groaned.
“C’mon girl, it’s tradition,” she said. “We have to.”
Hannah, like me, was an independent mid-twentysomething girl who was in no hurry to get tied down by marriage. But also like me, she had a lot of mid-twentysomething friends who were in a hurry to get hitched.
As a result, we were both in danger of becoming professional bridesmaids. During our two years as roomies, she’d been in two weddings, as had I, and now I had just signed up for my third. So yeah, that was enough times for us to develop a tradition around it. Hannah poured the dark, evil-looking liquid.
“Always a bridesmaid,” she said, raising her glass.
“And never a bride,” I answered, and our glasses clinked.
The powerful whiskey burned all the way down. My eyes watered, I coughed and I almost gagged. For at least a moment, the pain almost drowned out my anxiety over the upcoming wedding.
Marcus was my kryptonite, and as far as I could tell, I was his. He was an absolutely beautiful man: tall, dark, handsome, muscled, athletic, charming…yet apparently humble even to the point of being a bit shy. No woman could be blamed for feeling that love-at-first-sight spark when meeting Marcus. And, putting false modesty aside, Marcus wasn’t the first man to feel that sort of spark for me.
Still, we all know that you can’t always get what you want, and sometimes that means you can’t act on those instant fiery passions when they arise. For instance, it’s particularly frowned upon when there’s a marriage involved. But when Marcus knocked on my hotel room door on the way home from his bachelor party…at 2:30 am, just eleven and a half hours before his wedding…and I answered the door in a shameless state of undress…
…the spark between us erupted in blazing glory and within minutes we were engaged in activity that wasn’t technically adulterous (he wasn’t actually married yet) but was way down at the wrong end of the adultery spectrum.
Okay, fine, so we had our secret fun, got it out of our system, nobody knew, I kissed him goodnight, and the next day the wedding happened as planned, and everyone lived happily ever after. Except…
Flash forward four months, and even though I hadn’t seen Marcus since then, I still couldn’t get him out of my head. I thought about him every day. And I knew he felt the same way, because…
“I think about you every day, Kiki,” he told me when he had called me a few weeks earlier, and he said the same thing during the other four post-wedding calls he made to me.
In each of those calls, I told him he shouldn’t be calling. Reminded him he was married. Told him it was a one-shot deal and he needed to let it go. Told him it was over. But I knew that even over the phone, he could feel my yearning, just as I could feel his.
There was a part of me that believed, or at least hoped, that seeing him in person at the wedding might give us some sort of closure that istanbul escort we couldn’t get from talking over the phone. That part of me hoped that this was what I needed to get him out of my head and let me get on with my life.
There was another part of me that hoped for something very different.
“Kiki, don’t worry about Kimberly,” Samantha had told me. “She’s forgiven you.”
Samantha didn’t mean Kimberly had forgiven me for fucking Marcus, because she didn’t know about that, and neither did anyone else besides Marcus and me, and she certainly wouldn’t have forgiven me if she did know.
What Samantha meant was that Kimberly had forgiven me for the imaginary reason she’d yelled at me before her wedding. My bridesmaid’s dress hadn’t fit properly, and after it was altered, Bridezilla thought I looked too “slutty.” Excuse me for having big tits, long legs, and a tight body.
Facing Kimberly again gave me less anxiety than seeing Marcus, but it was still going to be a challenge. I managed to swallow my anger before Kimberly’s wedding, because I hadn’t wanted to ruin her special day, even though I couldn’t stand her. But I had already decided I wasn’t going to take her shit this time.
Once we started closing in on Samantha’s wedding day, my first encounter with Kimberly was, of course, the final fitting for the bridesmaids’ dresses – the same event where everything had gone off the rails at Kimberly’s wedding.
The bridesmaids all showed up on time, and we were working efficiently with the bridal shop employees to get fitted. Kimberly showed up half an hour late and started barking out orders to show that she, as maid of honor, was in charge. She was largely ignored because the process was going fine without her. And of course that made her frustrated and edgy.
She approached me and stood close by as a seamstress measured me. I didn’t bother turning but met her eyes in the mirror.
“Hello, Kiki,” she said. Her artificially sweet tone matched her fake smile.
“Kimberly,” I replied without warmth.
“Hmmm…looks like your dress fits…this time,” she said.
Our eyes remained locked in the mirror. Her mouth opened slightly, like she was going to say something more. This would have been a perfect time for her to at least acknowledge what happened between us before, if not apologize.
It was also an opportunity for her to make another snide remark and renew the hostilities. Most of the bridesmaids in this wedding had also been at Kimberly’s, so they’d seen us clash before. The room went quiet as the moment stretched.
I didn’t like how close she was standing, so I flipped my long dark hair. She flinched as it passed within a couple inches of her face.
“Well,” she said at last. “Well. Great.” If picking another fight with me was on her agenda, she must have thought better of it.
“Oh, Allison,” she called out to another girl as she turned away. “Dear, that’s too tight in the waist, that won’t do…”
After the fitting, there was an informal buffet brunch. Members of the wedding party wandered in and out over an extended period of a couple hours, munching free food and catching up with old and new friends. Some had clearly just gotten out of bed. Some seemed to be arriving from or heading to various wedding-related events and activities. Most seemed to be in no particular hurry. Later, the day would get more hectic: we would have the rehearsal, the rehearsal dinner, and the bachelor and bachelorette parties. But this relaxed, unscripted, loosely organized brunch seemed like the best opportunity to catch a private word with Marcus.
He was serving as a groomsman in the wedding, and he was sitting at a table shooting the shit with the groom and a few others guys the same age, presumably the remainder of the groom’s party. There were various other conversations going on at the other tables, and Kimberly was nowhere to be seen.
His eyes picked me up almost immediately. I felt a hot flush in my face, my body…my pussy. He was relatively subtle about it, he was still laughing and carrying on his conversation and sipping his coffee, but his eyes never left me. I did a quick tour of the buffet, grabbed a tiny pastry, and strolled casually through the dining area, exchanging smiles and brief greetings with a few people I knew.
I made eye contact with Marcus again, then wandered toward a doorway at the back of the dining room. It led onto an outdoor terrace, and at the end of the terrace there was a stairway that led down to the hotel grounds. A path led me into a small courtyard with a softly gurgling fountain.
A moment later, Marcus appeared. He stopped for a second in the courtyard entrance and his face broke into a huge smile. I wanted to be stern and serious, but my cheeks ached, I was smiling so hard. He resumed his progress toward me.
“Marcus, I…” I began, ready to launch into my speech about how it was over, there was nothing more between us, but he didn’t stop to talk. Instead, he simply marched straight up to avcılar escort me, took me in his arms and kissed me.
Kissed me and held me and crushed me and overwhelmed me with his passion, and he re-ignited mine. My lips parted and his tongue entered my mouth, and his hands were on my ass and my tits were in his chest and my breath was gone and I was dizzy and there were fireworks in my head.
And my pussy was wet, suddenly, very wet, like my heart was melting and pouring out through my body into my panties. All my carefully constructed logic and my intricately crafted words explaining why we couldn’t be together were instantaneously obliterated by the power of our flaming desire.
It felt incredible to be in his arms again. I hadn’t touched him in over four months, not even seen him, not since that magical night in Phoenix. But now it seemed like that had happened yesterday, like hardly any time had passed at all. I held onto him like I was drowning and he was my lifeboat. We swayed, we kissed, we touched, we caressed. His hand was on my hip, my waist, my breast. I could feel his hardness through his pants, against my tummy. My need for him was so powerful, it was a physical ache. I wanted him so bad, and I knew he desired me just as much, and my mind began to think about possibilities of where we might steal some more time together, maybe turn this into an afternoon of passion, and my body felt hot and tingly and ready, and…
“Marcus! Are you out here?”
Kimberly’s voice. She was not quite upon us, but she was probably on those stairs, or even on that path, no more than seconds away…
I pushed violently away from him. At the end of the courtyard there was an open French door leading back into the building and I dashed into it. I took a quick glance over my shoulder and he was still alone, so we’d gotten away with it, but the pain and hurt and yearning on his face broke my heart. I fled deeper into the building…
“Never. Ever. Again.”
That’s what I told myself, sitting in my car in the hotel’s self-park lot, after I’d finally calmed myself down enough to form actual words. How had I gotten myself into this? How could I be so stupid?
After my narrow escape, I would have gone straight to my hotel room for good cry. But the wedding was local for me, so I didn’t have a room. I held myself together as I rushed down hallway after hallway. The tears didn’t start to fall until just after I was through the lobby and out the main entrance. The catastrophic collapse didn’t happen until my car was actually in sight, and the complete meltdown happened when I finally plopped down in the front seat. The worst of it was over within about 20 minutes, and by then I was able to make the short drive home, where I had plenty of time to get myself together before the day’s next event.
Three hours later, at the rehearsal, I had my game face on. Marcus was there, of course, sometimes no more than 20 feet away when the line of bridesmaids faced off against their male counterparts, as if preparing to do battle. But I steadfastly avoided eye contact with him, and he seemed determined to do the same.
Mentally, I was strong, and my wild emotions from earlier were under hard lockdown.
My physical condition, though, was a different story. My brief kiss and embrace with Marcus had flipped a switch to the on position, and I was having trouble switching it off. In that brief moment, my body had decided there was going to be sex, and all relevant systems had gone on high alert. My breasts felt heavy, my hard nipples sensitive against my bra. My lips were swollen, and I could still taste Marcus. My hips were loose and frisky and wanted to move violently. My pussy felt thick and creamy, and I thought I kept catching faint whiffs of my own arousal. At the conscious level, I was certain I appeared perfectly normal, but I couldn’t quite shake the feeling that everyone could see what a shameless, voracious slut I was.
Although I kept my eyes away from Marcus, I kept an eye on his wife. I watched Kimberly carefully for any signs that she might have picked up some clue about Marcus and me, but she was bubbly, giddy and obliviously self-important in her prominent role as maid of honor.
The rehearsal dinner was a bit surreal. Alyssa, one of the other bridesmaids, latched onto me and brought me to her table. She was a sweet girl, a gorgeous, curvy Latina, and I couldn’t help but like her. But…Marcus was her distant cousin, and all the other people at the table were friends or relatives of Marcus, and basically all they talked about was Marcus.
The Man Himself was seated at the head table with the bride and groom and their closest family and friends, because of his status as husband of the maid of honor.
“Poor Marcus,” Alyssa said at one point. “He looks so bored. I know he’d rather be here right now, with…us.” I thought I caught her glancing side-eye at me, and there were soft chuckles and what seemed to be knowing glances among others at the table.
I blushed hard and fought down my paranoia. It felt like they knew, şirinevler escort somehow, something about Marcus and me. Then again, it felt like everybody knew. No, it simply wasn’t possible. It was just the paranoia of my own guilty conscience.
Alyssa walked out with me as the dinner ended.
“See you tonight,” she said, referring to the bachelorette party which was scheduled to start in a couple of hours. “I can’t wait, it’s gonna be a blast!”
The bachelorette party was anything but a blast. Organized by Kimberly, it was as stale and pompous as she was.
We began with dessert at a restaurant that was known for being expensive and mediocre. Next, we went to a rather quiet and dull bar, where we had a few overpriced drinks and some nondescript conversation. Finally, we ended up in Kimberly’s ostentatious suite at the hotel, where Samantha opened a few gifts.
Samantha seemed quite happy, though, so who am I to complain? Samantha and Kimberly were jazzed about an early-morning spa treatment they had booked, and they wanted to turn in early. So the party wrapped up early and Kimberly shooed us out the door.
That was it. No well-endowed male strippers, no gag gift sex toys, no binge drinking, no wild dance floor adventures in seedy nightclubs. And it was barely 11:00 pm. I might have felt more disappointed, but I really didn’t mind calling it an early night, after my exhausting, emotionally chaotic day.
And so I was walking out through the lobby, ready to head home, when I heard giggles behind me.
“Hey Kiki, wait up!” It was Alyssa, with another girl named Vickie, a slender, pretty blonde who’d been at our table during the rehearsal dinner.
“Hey, ladies,” I answered with a grin. They were tipsy enough to be a silly shade of happy, and it was infectious.
“We were hoping you could give us a ride,” said Alyssa.
“Does she have a car?” asked Vickie.
“I told you she has a car, you silly bitch!” Alyssa giggled, trying to sound angry.
“Well excuse me, cow,” said Vickie.
“Shut up, bitch!”
They burst out in laughter, and they cracked me up too.
“Where do you need to go?” I asked. Vickie gave me a very serious look, then glanced left, right, and back over her shoulder. Satisfied there weren’t any spies lurking nearby, she leaned close to my ear.
“We’re crashing the bachelor party,” she whispered, before she and Alyssa burst into another fit of laughter.
The bachelor party was at Bix’s house, 15 miles up the coast in Long Beach. Bix was a friend of Rodrigo, the groom. I didn’t know Bix well enough to call him a friend, but he was at least an acquaintance, and he had a solid enough reputation that I didn’t feel I was being completely irresponsible dropping off two women at a party at his house shortly before midnight. Still…
“How are you getting home?” I asked Alyssa. She sat up front with me, while Vickie was in the back chattering away on her phone.
“We’ll take Uber if we stay late,” she said. “But we’ll probably just leave whenever you do.”
“Oh…I wasn’t planning to stay, I was just gonna drop you off.”
“What? Oh nooo, you have to stay, at least for a little while!”
But of course I couldn’t stay. Marcus would be there. My face got hot, and my pulse quickened from just thinking about seeing him tonight.
“No, I can’t,” I told her. “I gotta get some sleep. I don’t have the energy for a wild party tonight.”
“We’re not planning to stay long,” said Alyssa. “We’re just gonna say hi and hang out a little.”
“And it’s not gonna be wild,” said Vickie, now joining the conversation. “I just got off the phone with Bix, he said a bunch of the guys left already, because they’re getting up early to play golf.”
That last bit reassured me. Marcus loved golf, so it was almost certain he was in that group. I was confident he would already be gone. If I didn’t need to worry about running into Marcus, then it was just another party, so why not drop in? I could at least socialize for a little while, and who knew, maybe I’d meet some interesting guys to flirt with.
“Okay, maybe for a little while,” I said.
“Yayyyy!” squealed Alyssa, and I managed to keep the car under control as she threw herself into me for a hug.
Bix was a stocky, muscular black guy with a bit too much facial hair for my taste, and greeting us at the door in a bathrobe and wet hair seemed a bit cheesy, but he had a warm smile and he absolutely lit up when he saw Vickie. They shared a quick hug and kiss before he waved us in.
“Kiki, you look amazing as always,” he said. “Long time no see.”
“Hey, Bix,” I replied. “Nice place.” And it was nice, a sizeable house in an above-average neighborhood. I couldn’t remember what Bix did for a living, but whatever it was, it seemed to pay well. The living room was huge, dominated on one side by a massive big screen TV, where two guys were playing a video game, and on the other side by a pool table and fireplace. Two guys and a tall, busty, underdressed girl, who I guessed was probably the now off-duty stripper, were shooting pool. Bix led us to the middle of the room, where a sofa and some chairs surrounded a large coffee table. On the table: a pile of weed that was already cut up and ready to go, and a vaping device that was a little bigger than a box of cigarettes. Bix motioned us to sit, then took his own seat.
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