After the Wedding

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“Did you see the expressions on most of the people’s faces when they realized that I was your date?” Kalisha exclaimed.

Joe chuckled. “Yes, I did and it was priceless. They couldn’t imagine that an old goat like me could be with a young and beautiful woman like you.”

“You’re no old goat. You’re more like a tiger, especially in bed.”

“You bring out the animal in me.”

“A couple of people thought I was a friend of the bride’s.”

“Well, you and she are much closer in age than you and I are.”

“Most of them were staring at us when we were dancing but I didn’t care. You’re such a terrific dancer. I felt like Cinderella at the ball and you were my prince. I could have danced all night.”

“I’m sure you could have but like all good things, that had to come to an end. To be frank, I was happy to leave. It was beginning to get a bit stuffy and I was getting tired of the nasty looks I was getting from the women, especially the older ones. The men, on the other hand, were green with envy. A couple of them wanted to dance with you but I told each one of them an emphatic no. I didn’t want you dancing with anyone but me. I was very pleased to inform them that you were my girlfriend.”

“I think Georgiana and the groom were the only people who were cool about us being a couple.”

“Yes, they were.”

“So, where are they going for their honeymoon?”

“Santorini.”

“That’s an island in Greece, right?”

“Yes.”

“Where would you want to spend your honeymoon?”

“I don’t know. I’ve never really thought about it.”

“I’d love to spend mine somewhere in Italy.”

“Do you want to get married, Kalisha?”

“Yes. Don’t you?”

“Yes. When would you like to get married?”

“I don’t know.”

“How about in December?”

“December?”

“Yes. The last week in December. We can welcome in the New Year as newlyweds.”

“Are you serious?”

“Of course, I’m serious. I didn’t have more than one glass of champagne tonight.”

“You really want to marry me?”

“Of course. Why wouldn’t I? I love you and I want to spend the rest of my life with you. Aren’t those good enough reasons to want to marry you?”

She stared at him, her heart pounding. Was he really serious? With all her heart, she hoped that he was.

“Hmm. I can see that you still have doubts about my sincerity. All right. Perhaps, this will convince you.” He reached into the breast pocket of his jacket and removed a little black box. Getting up, he walked over to where she was standing, got down on one knee. He opened the box so that she could see the exquisite ring. He held it in his hand. “Kalisha Harris, will you marry me?”

She didn’t trust herself to say anything so she nodded her head vigorously. He smiled and taking her hand, he slipped the ring on. Then, he rose to his feet and cupping her face between his hands, he kissed her tenderly on the mouth. When he raised his head to gaze down into her upturned face which was wet with tears, he rubbed them gently away with his thumbs. “These are tears of joy, I hope.”

“Yes, they are.”

“Good. Let’s celebrate with a glass of champagne.” He released her and quickly left the living-room.

Kalisha stood there, hardly able to believe that he had just asked her to marry him. She looked at the ring. It was exquisitely beautiful. It seemed so surreal. When they were at the wedding, as she watched the bride and groom exchange their vows, she imagined what it would be like for her and Joe to be standing there instead. How many times she had dreamed of him proposing to her?

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When he rejoined her, he was grinning. As he handed her a glass, he remarked, “You should have seen the look on your face when you saw that I was serious about marrying you. It was priceless.”

“I couldn’t believe it. It seemed too good to be true.”

“This is true all right. To us.”

She raised her glass. “To us.”

They made a toast. “So, how would you like to spend your honeymoon in Praiano, Italy?”

“Praiano?”

“Yes. It’s a rustic and quaint Italian seaside town and perfect for honeymooners who want to avoid crowds.”

“Sounds good. How come you came up with a honeymoon destination so quickly when you said you never really thought about it?”

“I thought about it when I was getting the bottle of wine which a good friend of mine brought back for me from Praiano. He and his wife went there a couple of weeks ago. He showed me photos of the town and raved about how quiet and romantic it was.”

“Oh.”

He took her glass from her and put it on the coffee table with his. “Why don’t we finish our celebration in the bedroom?”

Smiling, she grabbed his hand. “Andiamo!”

Sources: Town and Country; Walks of Italy

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