DOZ Issue 33 July 2018 - Page 19

moment he saw her coming down the aisle. Now, as he looked down at her, something changed. He knew it. She knew it. This man loved her unconditionally, without reservation or pause. He deserved so much more than this. This was bigger than expectations, finances, guests, and pride. This was forever, and somewhere down the line when he looked back, he would thank her. Shannon held up a hand to stop the Pastor. She motioned to Jessie to come closer. “I’m so sorry. I love him, and you don’t deserve a loveless marriage. I hope that someday you’ll find someone who will make you happy. Forgive me,” she whispered in his ear. With that, she turned quickly away to avoid the pain and bitterness that she glimpsed in his eyes. She cast an apologetic look towards the parents and then ran back down the aisle and through the church doors towards the street. She had read about these dramatic weddings and watched this kind of thing happen in the movies, but never did she imagine that she could let things get this far. Never did she imagine causing someone she cared for so much pain and embarrassment. Nevertheless, she couldn’t go through with it. On paper, Jessie was the one. She really cared for him, and he fit what everyone else wanted for her life. He was a good man and needed an equally good and loving woman who would devote her life to caring for him. Shannon knew she didn’t fit the bill. She ran as fast as her legs could take her, despite the many layers of fabric that made up her gown. As she ran, her vision was so blurred that she didn’t notice the tall figure that leaned against the wall of the parking garage. Suddenly she felt herself drawn in a huge embrace. Almost immediately, she recognized him. She felt as if everything would now be alright. She was right where she belonged. They stood by the parking garage oblivious to the curious onlookers. “I came to the church, but I couldn’t watch you give yourself to another man,” he said as he held her close. “I just stood here hoping for a miracle. Hoping for you.” “I’m sorry it took me so long to figure it out,” she replied. “You know, people can lie to each ot W"'WBFRV'Bv( BWfW"&RFV6VfVB( Ю( vBFRRf"R&W6FW2ǒvFגFV6R6VBWfW"FVvFvƖPR( Ф&vG2&W6W'fV@6W&&VBv2&&w7F6@&6VB֗&"f&FW"76ƖfR06V6VƖrBVGV6FrWF&&W26VFP&VFrw&FrBvF6rfW2W"P2FV6W&vRFW'2F&VvW"w&FrBFVFVFV"6&7FvƲDvRVǒ# *