Victoria Ch. 03byjjcole©
When I woke up on my wedding day I was again alone. Vicky and Fay Marie were not in the room. It was the second time it had happened and I decided I did not like it that much. I reasoned that the person you went to bed with should still be there when you woke up.
It did occur to me that I had often wished for the opposite to be true.
I concluded that Mom had decided to honor the superstitions regarding the bride and groom not seeing each other the day of the wedding. She apparently did not consider the event as just a business deal. I was not too surprised to note that I did not either.
Mom called me as I finished getting dressed and told me to go eat breakfast, that I had about an hour before my first duty shift began. I ate at the buffet then returned to the room. Mom came over to the room about twenty minutes later and handed me the baby bag and the baby.
She said, "Fay Marie just ate. You will only have entertainment and diaper duties for a while. At lunch either Fay or me will pick her up and she will go to lunch and you can too. Your long shift is this afternoon but you will have a break before you need to get dressed.
This is the address to the chapel, take a cab no later than 7:45 P.M.; we will already be at the chapel. We will have a limo at our disposal the rest of the night. Son, I love you. I am proud that you have no reservations about doing the right thing for your daughter."
I hugged Mom and told her it was not a problem. I smiled to myself when I realized I was telling the truth.
The day went by easily enough. Fay Marie slept most of the morning and I only had one diaper change to perform. At about the time she became hungry Fay knocked on my door and took her away. I did not go to lunch but instead fussed with my suit and ironed my shirt for that evening. By the time Mom returned with my baby I was more than ready to get her back.
I did a quick diaper change even though she did not need one then we went to see the concierge. I asked her about places were dinner and dancing were possible. She began to rattle off the usual attractions but I stopped her in mid spiel.
I said, "I need someplace where she would not get carded," and I pointed to Fay Marie.
The woman's demeanor changed from courteous hotel employee to friend almost immediately. Her name was Alice, about Mom's age and very pretty. She cooed at Fay as she asked me questions about her, to which I fortunately knew the answers.
She reached down into a counter cabinet and brought out her purse. She pulled out a bulging business card wallet but found the one she wanted quickly.
She said, "This is out of the way, it is in fact at the edge of the desert. The food is terrific and they have a patio outside. At what time will you be going?"
"Then ask to sit outside, the temperature will be nice by then and there are misters all around the deck. There will be less noise for her," she said as she smiled at Fay Marie. "There is a small band that plays from around nine to around twelve. They play all kinds of music although I warn you that they are really bad men. My husband is the lead guitarist and my brother is the drummer.
The place closes at twelve-thirty, which is ridiculously early by Vegas standards but this is not a tourist place. In fact you are the first one in months I have sent there. Any man that will take his daughter dancing has my immediate affection."
She handed me the restaurants card and said, "Don't worry if it seems that it takes forever before you get there, after you leave the lights behind it is just ten minutes away, less than thirty minutes total from here depending on traffic."
I thanked her then said goodbye. I stopped two steps away then turned back to her and kissed her on the cheek. She grinned and blushed.
Fay Marie and I went for a hamburger then walked around the hotel for a while. Although I knew she did not yet have the ability to focus she seemed to be fascinated by the chandeliers. The sound of the slots seemed to make her nervous. "Smart girl," I said to her. "You are correct in fearing those things."
I almost did not recognize Fay when she came to get the baby late that afternoon. Her longish mostly unkempt hair had been cut and highlighted. She wore make-up. I wondered what changes I would see in Vicky.
At seven-thirty I was stepping into a cab, a bit early but as it turned out a good thing, the traffic was horrendous. I got to the chapel at eight and watched as a wedding party filed out. An older man came to me and introduced himself, he told me that he would be conducting my ceremony and ushered me into the chapel.
After giving me instructions on the choreography of the event he went to another room. Five minutes later he was back advising me that the ladies had opted to go ahead and start the ceremony. We just needed to give the photographer a couple of minutes and the witnesses a restroom break. In less than five minutes the music began and the four ladies marched in. Fay was holding her namesake as Mom accompanied Vicky down the aisle. They were holding hands.
There were no radical changes in Vicky's appearance that I could see, maybe some subtle changes in her hair and make-up. She looked gorgeous.
About the time I started to worry about a ring for Vicky Mom handed it to me. We had matching wedding bands. A small blur of time later I was kissing my wife. It was not a cursory kiss from either of us; it was a true bride and groom kiss.
Vicky and I went outside as Mom and Fay and Fay Marie conducted some business. We held hands. We were in our limo on the way to dinner and dancing before our wedding was supposed to have started.
The place we were heading to was called Aunty El's and was just as Alice advertised, except that she had omitted one detail; she was the lead singer for the band.
After dinner I waited for a ballad and asked Vicky to dance with me. I heard Alice dedicate her song to us. Vicky buried her face on my shoulder and trembled a bit.
As the song ended and we applauded Alice stepped down from the stage and kissed our cheeks. "I better see you dancing with your daughter before the night is out or there will be hell to pay," she said to me.
I said, "The next ballad."
Mom and I danced to old-fashioned rock and roll; she and Fay danced to one of those country music line dances. When the next ballad began I picked up Fay Marie from the carrier and walked us to just inside the door between the patio and the dance floor and danced with my daughter.
Alice was beaming, so were Vicky, Fay, and Mom. Vicky was next to us as I danced with our daughter so I took Vicky's hand and urged her to me and as the song ended I was dancing with my wife and daughter.
Mom said that some of the applause was for us.
Not long after that the band launched into a long rock instrumental number. Alice left the stage and came to our table and I introduced her to my family. "This is my wife Vicky, my sister-in-law Fay, my Mom Marie, and you already met my dance partner Fay Marie,"
"I wonder how she got her name," Alice said with a giggle.
I brought a chair over for her as Mom and Fay thanked her for allowing us into the world of the real people.
Alice laughed and welcomed us. "How did you like the food?" she asked.
"Terrific," I said. I even liked the green sauce on my steak."
"It is a special avocado sauce they make here."
"He put that sauce on my salad and it became the best salad ever," Vicky said. "We have been dipping our fries in it. Do you think we could get the recipe?"
"I doubt it. I have been begging for years and all I know is that there is lemon, not lime in the recipe. The silly old woman that owns this joint promised that she would leave the recipe for me in her will. I am trying not to kill her since she is my aunt."
We laughed at that line and had a very nice visit until Mom suddenly exclaimed, "Alice Turnbull of The Fronds! I knew I recognized the voice."
"Wow, you must have been one of our seventeen fans. Thanks," Alice said.
Mom laughed and told Fay and Vicky, "Her band was awesome, and they had a hit album with four songs that ran through my head all through my senior year in high school. Then they just vanished. What happened?" Mom asked Alice.
Alice said, "Same old story. When we started the band I was the keyboardist's girl. He was the founder and leader of the band. Eighteen months later as we finished the album I was the guitarists pregnant wife. We were asked to leave the band so I became a teacher and my husband became an accountant.
This is our hometown, really, it is. We play now and then when some venue finds itself in need of a temporary act. My family talked us into appearing at their joint on weekends so we decided to do that for the free food. That plus it is fun for us.
I was working at the hotel today because the real concierge is at his daughter's wedding. I do work at the Mirage and at T I part time during the summer."
"I want your autograph," Mom said.
"I don't give autographs," Alice said. "Would my cell number be OK? I think we need to talk some more."
Mom looked at Alice in astonishment then gave out a squeal and hugged her tightly. Alice wrote down her cell number on the restaurant business card she had given me and then after giving Mom a wide grin, signed her name with a flourish. Mom kissed Alice's cheek.
"Alice your husband seems to be trying to get your attention," I said.
"Ooops, that is my intro. Glad to have met you'all. Seriously, call me," She said to Mom.
Alice was soon belting out rock and roll and Mom drug me back out to the dance floor. I was soon in the middle of a three-woman tag team, as their defenseless victim. Mom, Fay and Vicky really did tag each other as they took the other's place as my dance partner. Fay and Mom had apparently given dibs on the ballads to Vicky. Slow dancing saved my life.
Well before we were ready it was closing time. We met Alice's Aunt El, (the owner of the place), and her husband Mark as the band packed up. Eventually we said goodnight to Alice and rode our limo to the hotel. Moving towards the lights made our ride seem a lot shorter than moving away from them had.
Mom and Fay accompanied us to our room. As soon as I had the door open Fay went into the room with Fay Marie. Mom took the card key out of my hand, handed me a different card and closed the door behind her.
Vicky and I wandered to their room somewhat stunned. When we got there we found that the card would not work. We looked at the cardholder to make sure we had the right room and noticed we did not; the card was to a room several floors up.
When we opened the door to our new room we found ourselves in a honeymoon suite. We had been given the opportunity to consummate the marriage. No, we were being urged to consummate the marriage.
Vicky and I marveled at the room, the flowers, and the champagne. The view out the window was terrific. We moved a couple of chairs to it and sat there for a while just taking in the view.
I knew Vicky did not drink so I did not open the champagne. I found soft drinks in the mini fridge and we drank them as we chatted about our day and our night while sitting in front of the window.
We knew we were stalling, each afraid that the other wanted no part of sex. The fact that we had already had sex and that was what had put us in that honeymoon suite in the first place never entered my mind.
One of us had to come to a decision. The only thing I had decided was that it was not going to be me. I was going to be happy even if all we did was stare out the window all night. Not my first choice, but it was not my choice.
Vicky stood and decided for us.