Because the priest had refused to marry Laura and The Boyfriend, Laura and I went to meet the Church of England vicar at our parish church. A perfect result, the original wedding date was available. I booked the church for the ceremony. The reception venue could remain the same. Problem sorted?
NO. Not for The Boyfriend’s mother. With her frail nerves, she spat venom. She would not put one foot inside a Church of England. The church and the venue were cancelled.
Compromise: a registry ceremony at a hotel where celebrations could be held. Disappointment for Husband and me. Laura was happy. A good hotel, and we would fill it with flowers. We chose food and wine. Champagne for arrival, champagne for a toast. A buffet supper and a disco. The wedding dress was made by me. Bridesmaids were sorted. The Boyfriend and hoards of his mates chose matching suits. Invites were in circulation.
Two weeks before the wedding day, the phone rang. The shrill pitch reverberated around our empty home. A message was left on the machine. A message of doom. A banshee recorded her news on the answering machine, addressed to us, the parents, our daughter would marry a serial adulterer. Husband and I shared a look. We knew the message was true.
Laura arrived home lulled by her train journey. We sat her down, then forwarded the bad tidings. She decided to drive to his house.
Anxious for Laura’s return, we waited. A cold stone dropped in my stomach where it would remain.