Chapter 30 Thirty minutes later, Shawn shook his head, trying to forget what Dave said before he went to the door. He decided to evaluate the reception at the ballroom instead.
There was, at least, a bartender in the mini-bar behind the pink and white garland-covered area. He thought that the more he needed to have another drink, the more confused he got. Looking at the grandeur of the reception, he sighed and signaled a drink to the bartender. He sat at the white table and looked at the expensive flowers and sweet-scented candles. The bartender glanced up at him, then went back to his duties after giving him his drink and continuing his conversation with the man in a dark suit sitting on a stool at the minibar drinking.
Shawn saw no waitress. Everyone was busy in the reception main ballroom, but obviously someone had waited on the men in the booth, so he figured the waitress would be right back or the bartender doubled and waited tables too.
He looked up as someone cleared their throat near him. He nodded. It was Dave and Jane’s husband, with a toddler in his hand, eating a huge’neon oblong candy. Dave nodded and sat beside him with a heavy sigh. He was wearing a white shirt but with a truly outlandish tie. On his feet was expensive leather. What made Shawn smile was that he had a neon candy stain over his left shirt arm and he had the silliest bore look on his face. “I swear the ladies will kill me one of these days. They couldn’t even stop talking about lipstick and the color of the shade of those… ah-mascara, whatever it was. I’m so bored!”
“Don’t worry, ten minutes more and the ceremony will begin. Because Catherine deserves the limelight as well, I decided to change the venue rather than have it in my library. The media was in a frenzy.” He said and looked at the little boy. Shawn couldn’t help but stare at the child and his beautiful dimple. He was probably three to four years old, unaware of the messy candy residue in his mouth. “Hey! Uncle S-Shawn,” Simon grumbled under his breath, licked his lips, and offered Shawn two different kinds of candy. “Want some? The beautiful waitress gave it to me, so I’ll stop asking her.”
“Simon, probably because her make-up was so ugly?” Dave added. “Shut up Dave. You are giving him a bad idea. Jane will kill me… And the lady was not ugly. Maybe a little bit… But, Mr. Richmond, please accept my apologies. His mom was busy, and I ended up looking after this young man here.” Simon’s father mumbled and looked around, then gestured to the bartender and asked for a drink. “Oh, it’s nothing. I love kids.” Shawn messed up Simon’s hair, and Dave halted. “So Shawn, where is the honeymoon? Any plans for a kid yet? I’d love to have little Cathy.” While the father and son went to the small seating area minibar provided, Dave asked.
“Shut up Dave. You know better than that!” He smirked, knowing full well that whatever he said earlier had made an impact on her sister’s husband.
Then an Asian wedding coordinator grumbled at their back. “Gentlemen, it’s time.” The two men stood up, with Dave extending his hand to Shawn. The men shook. “I’ll tell you one thing,” Dave said, “It’s going to take some getting used to having a brother-in-law that’s way more annoying than your wife.” The laughter that followed broke the tension. Jane’s husband and son took the opportunity to go, leaving the two alone. Dave caught Shawn glancing again at the old Vegas wedding ring on his hand.
“It’s the right thing, Shawn. She will take care of you with all she has. She wanted your grandfather to be happy, and guess what? I was the best man for you then, and I wouldn’t be doing it if I didn’t think it was the right thing now. But hurt my sister and you’ll know to never mess up with me.” Dave added.
Shawn looked at him in the eyes, nodded and watched his grandfather in the wheelchair being escorted by his private nurse as he smiled and nodded his head. “Can I just have a minute alone, Dave?”
“Sure, we can’t start this without you anyway. Take all the time you need.”
Shawn watched Dave and the coordinator leave quietly. He didn’t doubt his intention for Catherine or his grandfather’s love for him. He just… He will miss him. Looking at his frail body, the pain in his heart heightened. Earlier, they had a long talk about what the old man wanted for the company, about him having a family soon, about having children, and looking at Simon’s made it all the more difficult because he knew Catherine wouldn’t agree to another contract, especially one that would involve having a child. Why was it so difficult to make things right? In the business world, all he needed was money, power, and confidence and he could have anything he wanted, but with Catherine, everything was too difficult.
Shawn went to his grandfather and gently kissed him on the forehead. “Ready, old man?” “I was born ready, Shawn! How about you? You looked scared, young man.” “Yes, grandfather, I am more than scared.” He smirked as the old man checked him once again,”… of course you are, I felt the same. Go now! It’s normal to get scared.” They hugged briefly, then headed for the main ceremonial area, pushing his grandfather’s wheelchair.
At seven o‘clock, the guests were all waiting for the newlyweds to enter the ballroom where the reception was being held. The not-so-private ceremony ended a while ago, but one of the yoga girls popped in afterward with the update that they were taking some pictures and would come down shortly.
The ballroom currently holds about fifty guests with pink facemasks, many of whom were the bride’s yoga classmates, Shawn’s associates, and some of the media in all their fitted suits. Not Dave, obviously. He rocks a suit like nobody’s business. Jane and Chelsea were wearing a pastel -pink dress that matches their eyes and silver stilettos that give Jane some height and make Chelsea’s legs look endless. Dave couldn’t take his eyes off of her. After all, it was no secret that he once had a little crush on Chelsea, and she dwindled it down before it became too
awkward. Her blonde hair was pulled back in an elegant twist, revealing the diamond studs in her ears.
“Are you drooling, Dave?” Jane asked with a smirk.
“You are too obvious. Aren’t you over her yet? Jesus, that was a long time ago, and still, you fancy her? Yes?”
“I swear Jane if you won’t shut up, I’ll give Simon more sweets… you won’t like it.” “Fine enough, but wait, is this from the new Brioni Vanquish II collection?” Jane asked, running her small hands over the front of my very expensive suit jacket. Well, fine, it wasn’t his but given by Shawn, and probably cost more than five of his paintings, but one can’t go around pawing at a man’s tailored wool, cotton, and silk blend. “Yes,” he answered smugly. “Jealous?” “Yes, John Cena, I’m so jealous,” Jane replied, dramatically rolling her eyes. Then she sighed,” Actually, yeah, I kind of am. You look better than I do tonight.” “Thank you for acknowledging that,” he said with a wink. Chelsea came to their side and shook her head. “You two are crazy.” “Ignore her,” Jane told Dave. “She doesn’t understand expensive clothing the way we do, because, for her, she wears it f*****g every day anyway.” She was right. Chelsea would be happy ignoring and not acknowledging expensive brand clothing for the rest of her life because she was used to it. She would never be amazed by a designer wardrobe as they did. But it was one of the many things Jane and he had in common, along with their boring taste for clothing. Yet, it was nice to have Chelsea back after her long weeks of modeling work in New York. After her contract there next month, she will move here.
“I can’t wait till we’re both in the city together again,” Chelsea said, but wait, where is Hugh? Was he not invited?” as if reading Jane’s mind. Dave replied, “actually, I saw him earlier at the mini bar, alone and drowning in the expensive wine. Maybe trying to think about that stupid hard yoga post again.”
Chelsea corrected him, her expression shining brighter. “You’re just jealous because we are all crushing over him.”
“Oh, hell no! He looks gay to me.”
“Of course not!” Jane and Chelsea grumbled at the same time.
A murmur rippled through the crowd.
“They’re here,” someone said from behind them. “Everyone, don’t take off the f*****g mask The paparazzi are on the way. We don’t want to be bullied on F******k for not wearing a mask ” Jane added. The two rolled their eyes and adjusted their face masks.
All gazes focus on the wide double doors in the arched doorway. A minute later, they hurled open, and Sarah skidded into the ballroom looking like an angel diva in a pink little dress with a full skirt, silver and pink tiara seamed into her ginger hair, and a beaming smile on her cute
little face, while Simon appeared to be like a prince in his little pink suit.
Then Jane scampered after her kids, reprimanding, “Simon, you were supposed to wait for your sister… Come on, give me that candy.” Laughter breaks out, which turns into a sequel of gasps when Catherine and Shawn appear.
“OW… she’s so pretty,” Chelsea breathes. “I know she possibly dislikes everyone gaping at her, but look at her. She looks so happy.”
She was correct. Dave thought his sister looked lovely in a simple white gown with a hollowed neckline, revealing some fine, scrumptious cleavage that he despised. Her golden hair cascaded over one naked, delicate shoulder, with a diamond flower brooch fastened to the side. Shawn stood well over six feet tall and towered over her, even in her incredibly high shoes. As they walk into the ballroom, they hold hands. Shawn was beaming, Catherine was blushing, and Dave deeply envied him at the time. Nonetheless, he was aware that it was due to the numerous paparazzi who were blinding Catherine.
Dave squeezed Chelsea’s hand, and when she squeezed back and slanted her head toward him with a smile, his heart clenched tight. “Fancy a date?” He couldn’t help whispering the teasing words in her ear.
She laughed softly. “Jerk! No way, you are Cathy’s brother. No way I’m breaking your heart. She’ll kill me.” She answered. For a second, Dave faltered. He wanted to ask her to define” break your heart,” but that would have hurt his pride, so he maintained his teasing tone. “I don’t know… Maybe I’ll be the one breaking your heart, but Cathy disowns me? In fact, I wouldn’t be against seeing you break your heart into a million pieces sooner rather than later. You’d be surprised.” “Huh? Me? No way! I’ll tear your heart into billions of pieces, obviously,” she replied, and he grinned. Her confidence rivals his. It was one of the reasons he loved her secretly.
“Want to bet?” Dave graciously. Chalsea’s expression grew thoughtful as she studied his face. He didn’t know what she glimpsed there, but whatever it was, it carried another laugh to her lips. “You might want to hold off on that. Because no way, you’ll win. I mean, it’ll probably take you a while to convince Cathy, but the answer is no.” His sister? She noted his blank look. “Oh, sweetie,” she tsks, blue eyes dancing. “You know you’d have to ask for her blessing, right?” His stomach sank. Does he have to ask for her blessing to break her best friend’s heart? How awful was that?
Oh, hell, yes!
Taking pity on him, Chelsea laced her fingers through Dave’s and tugged him forward. “Stop over-thinking it. Come on, let’s go congratulate the happy couple.”