story

Flash: Running out

“He’s not going to make it!”

Janet tried to calm her pacing daughter. “He’ll be here. He’s probably just stuck in traffic.”

“He needs to be here.”

Janet patted her daughter’s hand. “He will be. He’ll be here and it will be beautiful. You’ll see.”  While her daughter continued to pace, Janet could not help but to remark on the wrinkles that were starting to creep into the fabric. “If you continue to walk around like this, you are going to ruin the dress.”

“If he doesn’t show up, the dress won’t matter!”

Janet needed to think of a way to mollify her daughter Julie before she escalated beyond just pacing. “How about I go ask Jeff? He will know what is delaying Tom, right?”

“Whatever.”

“I’ll just do that.”

“Hey. Jeff.” Janet did not want to yell as that would call attention her plight but Jeff did not seem to hear her. She tried to move along the edge of the crowd to catch Jeff’s eye. Try as she might, she could not seem to catch him looking at her. She decided to move closer and tap him on the shoulder. “Jeff, I need your help for a minute”

Jeff moved with her over to the side. “What is it Mrs. B.?”

“Have you seen Tom?”

“Tom? Yeah. I saw him a few minutes ago.”

“He’s here then?”

“Yeah. He is setting up over there.” Jeff pointed toward the man controlling the sound system.

“The other Tom, Jeff. Julie’s Tom. Have you seen him?”

“Oh! Sorry. No. I haven’t seen Tom for awhile. He should be here though. The wedding is about to start.”

“Yes, Jeff. Yes. It is about to start. If you see him, let him know I need to speak with him, okay?”

She made it back into the room as Julie was starting to take off her dress. “What do you think you are doing?”

“Tom is not here! The wedding is ruined! And I’m getting out of this dress right now!”

“No, you’re not. You are keeping that dress on and Tom will be getting here soon.”

“And if he doesn’t?”

“Then…I’ll help you out of the dress and we’ll go home together.”

At that moment, the church bells started. The wedding was now supposed to start. While the music rang out, Janet and Julie looked at each other. Julie was the first one to break the silence.

“That’s it! I am taking off this dress and leaving. Are you going to help me?”

After Janet finished helping Julie out of the dress, she went to inform everyone else. As she was walking past the doorway, she stopped. She glanced out at the parked cars. As she watched, one car pulled in and another drove off. She then turned and continued her walk to see the pastor and stop this before it could get any worse.