“It’s spelled H-A-P-P-Y,” insisted Mia in her clipped schoolteacher voice. “Not, H-A-P-P-I-L-Y as in the ‘I-L’ in it, that just doesn’t make any sense.” She stood back from Pete’s handiwork with the shaving foam, splattered in what had to be said, dribs and drabs around Claire and Daniel’s Ford Flex.
“Don’t think they’ll really notice,” smirked Pete, fanning his fingers out full of shaving suds and gunk and twinkling them at her saying, “Here comes the monster!’
“You come one step near me mister, and you are going to get into trouble,” she replied half-smiling as he made a pretend lunge for her.
They could hear the sound of hillbilly rock peppering from the church hall, through the soft still-as-a-hush twilight, as the setting sun fanned a field of green grass to tongue pink.
Before this day, and this marriage between their friends, Pete had been the assistant at the local library. Now Mia was not sure, who was this grinning handsome young man standing in front of her some distance in this quiet spot of the field, with his head turned, a pretend upset pursed lipped mouth, thick blonde hair and innocent blue eyes. His shadow casting a long deep tall line behind him reaching the edges of the muddier land, and the tips of the sally reeds wafting slowly in the slight breeze.
“Uh-oh,” he said slowly and in a deep drawl.
“What?” said Mia standing with her elegant hands on her hips against her deep blue cocktail dress. The one with the halter neck and a back slice revealing some modest naked skin.
“Anybody got a towel or something?” Pete sing-songed looking from right to left at the night air.
“As if that is a possibility around here,” Mia smiled enjoying the playfulness. Pete was getting nearer.
“Almost there!’ he mouthed slowly and deep. Mia took a pace back.
The music was slowing down to an old time barn waltz, and they could hear the sounds of the wedding party lull into quiet conversations.
“You know, I’ve always had a thing for you,” said Pete.
“You know I don’t,” replied Mia.
“Really,” he said taking shorter strides now stopping right in front of her.
Suddenly she had no escape. She was standing in front of him, looking into those tall, handsome features, his rugged face, his clean good-looks.
He reached for her hand as the music glided over to them. She didn’t hesitate moving a step in closer to him. Heat building between them. “Mia,” he said. “Look at me please.” Mia felt like her life was a spinning top and coming to a halt. Slowly she raised her head. Was this the moment? He moved his mouth towards hers in time to the heart beat of the waltz. Mia closed her eyes, the sunset rays just making her profile visible. Pete was near her beauty and intoxicating allure as Kentucky Waltz rambled out in the air from a lonesome singer.
And just as they almost kissed, he pulled her even closer to him, damp wet hands on her bare back. “It’s ‘I-L-Y,'” he said softly. But this time Mia, didn’t really hear.