Today is the first Saturday in June, and that’s the day of Lacy and Michael’s wedding in His Brand Of Beautiful. Lacy is my heroine Christina’s, best friend, and Michael is Christina’s brother. It was at Lacy’s Hen’s Night where Christina first laid eyes on my hero, the very wonderful branding strategist, Tate. (You can see an excerpt from that opening scene in the previous post on my blog). Since that explosive encounter, Tate and Christina have defiantly tried to avoid being the first person “to call” the other. Fed-up with all this dallying about, Lacy plays matchmaker and invites Tate to her wedding.
The wedding scene is one of my favourites in the book because it gave me opportunity to trap my hero and heroine together for a few hours as wedding guests and make them talk. Did I mention I like writing dialogue?
Christina doesn’t like weddings. Prior to this excerpt beginning, she has just sat through a conversation with a sympathetic Aunt who believes she’s been stood-up because Tate is running late. Then she runs into a smarmy Politician ex-boyfriend who remains a friend of the family and delights in knowing Christina’s business.
I hope you enjoy this extract.
Near the stage, the three-piece band—shiny shoed, Beatles’ haircuts—began two, one-two sound-checks and strummed guitars. Waiters moved through the tables, collecting plates, pouring wine. The room hummed with conversations far more conventional than her own.
“How did you break your nose?” It was the first thing that popped into her head that wasn’t please take me home.
He looked away. “A horse bucked me into a fence post when I was fifteen.”
“What did you do to piss it off?”
“It wasn’t what I did. It was the five-foot King Brown who didn’t like hooves.”
She shuddered, no fan of snakes, and asked the second question that popped into her head. “Do you have children?”
“But you want kids?”
“What is this? Twenty questions?” He swished swordfish in coriander and lime sauce, but the light in his eyes softened the answer: “One day, sure. You?”
For a simple syllable, the question stung. “I hope so, one day. Yes.”
She waited until he brought his fork to his mouth. “So how come you’re still single?”
He almost choked. “Jesus. Don’t we have weeks to sort all this stuff out?”
“I’m too old for small-talk. If you have huge spooky skeletons in your closet, I’d rather just know.”
He reached for a bottle of Handcrafted Sauvignon Blanc and tilted it towards her. She put her hand over her glass. “I’m running tomorrow.”
“Don’t say it like that. Running. Jogging. Millions of people do it every day.”
“You don’t mention running on your blog.”
She raised an eyebrow. “You’ve done your homework. Lacy has me on a fourteen-week training plan. She’s like a greyhound, I take about three steps to her one. There’s a breast cancer fundraiser being held with the City to Bay in August. We’re raising money for that.”
He paused with the fork halfway to his mouth. “You get on well with your sister-in-law, why aren’t you bridesmaid?”
She tore her gaze from his lips. “Me? God, no. I hate weddings.”
“You don’t want to get married?” His eyes crinkled with amusement.
“Aren’t we supposed to spend weeks sorting all this stuff out?”
“Touché.” He downed the fish, eyed her beef. “Aren’t you hungry?”
“I ate your entree.”
He swapped his empty plate for her steak. Ice chinked as he filled two water glasses. “Don’t take this the wrong way, but I wouldn’t have picked you for the type of woman who goes running.”
“A little less padding wouldn’t hurt.”
“Your view. Not mine.” His gaze dipped to her collarbone, grazed the cleft between her breasts. If Abraham Lewis MP had looked at her like that she would have kicked his shin.
“Lacy said the endorphins will hit me at some stage and I’ll start to crave the exercise but I don’t think that happens until about week ten.”
“And what week is this?”
“Week two. Stop laughing!” She kicked his shin.
The microphone burped. Lacy’s father, red-faced and stiff, tapped it. Christina groaned and sliced her finger across her neck.
“Let me guess. You don’t like speeches?”
“I hate wedding speeches.”
Someone hushed them then like they were noisy spectators at a tennis match.
There are reasons why Christina doesn’t like weddings, and hates wedding speeches. My sister hates wedding speeches. You can almost count on the fact that once the speeches start, you won’t find her anywhere in the room. What about you? I will admit to being a Twilight fan, but the wedding speech scene in Breaking Dawn Part I has to be the worst wedding scene I’ve ever watched (let’s face it, the entire movie wasn’t much better) 🙂
If you’d like to read more of my debut novel, His Brand Of Beautiful, or buy the book please click here.