Then Father Dougherty declares, “I now pronounce you husband and wife. What God has joined together, let no man pull asunder. You may kiss your bride.”
Without hesitation, I sweep Kate up into my arms. She laughs and wraps her arms around my neck, and our mouths fuse hot and heavy. The kiss is long and thorough and totally inappropriate for church.
Applause and whistles erupt, the church bells ring, and the musicians belt out “Ode to Joy.”
Finally, reluctantly, I set Kate on her high-heeled feet and we walk down the aisle side by side.
Hand in hand.
Husband and wife.
We take a thousand f**king pictures, in a variety of locations and every conceivable combination. James holds up like a trouper—doesn’t get cranky once. The photographer had to ask Kate and me to stop making out so we could smile for the camera. Apparently, my hand on her ass is not an acceptable pose for a wedding portrait.
But I think he’s just flat-out wrong about that.
Once we all pile into the limo, Matthew passes me a bottle of champagne. I pop the cork, spewing bubbles everywhere. Some splashes on my face, and Kate leans over and slowly licks it off.
“Mmm . . . ,” Kate hums to me. “Champagne tastes good on you, Mr. Evans.”
I laugh. “I can think of a few other spots it’ll taste even better, Mrs. Evans.”
She giggles. “Make sure we have a bottle in the honeymoon suite tonight, then.”
“Way ahead of you, baby.” Her body puts Waterford crystal to shame.
I fill glasses and pass them around the limo. Steven gives Mackenzie a sip from his, and her face scrunches up adorably with disgust.
James climbs onto his mother’s lap and rests his head against her chest.
Kate strokes his dark hair. “He’s not going to last.”
I take a drink from my glass. “The way you look in that dress? Neither am I.”
“I thought your favorite dress was the one I’m not wearing?”
“This one is the exception. Although, I should reserve judgment until I see you out of it.” I kiss her ear, then whisper into it, “After a long, exhaustive perusal . . . I’ll make my preference abundantly clear.”
She gazes at me tenderly, with soft adulation shining on her beautiful face. “I’m so happy, Drew.”
I stroke James’s back and pull Kate close with my free arm. She nuzzles my neck and rests her cheek against my collarbone. With our friends’ raucous laughter all around us, we savor the moment.
The limo pulls up to the Four Seasons, where our reception is being held. Matthew climbs out first, then helps Dee, who brings her glass of champagne with her. James, recharged after his mommy-cuddle, bounds out next, followed by Mackenzie, Alexandra, and Steven. When the driver offers his hand to Kate, I tip him and say, “I got this, thanks.”
Then I assist my wife out of the limousine.
I don’t think I’ll ever get tired of thinking of her that way. I’m definitely gonna be looking for excuses to speak of her that way.
I escort her under the twinkling lighted archway into the building where we’ll celebrate our marital bliss. Though you and I both know the real celebration happens in the honeymoon suite.
Our group arrives at the well-appointed suite adjacent to the main ballroom, where the wedding party enjoys the cocktail hour away from the prying eyes of the guests—like rock stars in the greenroom. Lauren Laforet, our wedding planner, greets us, makes sure we’re good so far, then walks off dictating orders into a walkie-talkie to her minions. Delores and Alexandra have Kate stand to “bustle” the back of her dress, so she can dance without getting stepped on and falling on her face.
I don’t know what the “bustle” entails, but by the look of concentration on their faces—I don’t want any part of it. I head over to the buffet and pile hors d’oeuvres onto a plate for Kate.
Gotta keep her strength up for later.
While she stands, I feed her piece by piece. I’m guessing she didn’t eat this morning because she moans and sighs with each mouthwatering bite. Or maybe she just likes sucking on my fingers—’cause she does that too.
With a knowing smirk, Kate asks me, “You’re enjoying this, aren’t you?”
My semistiff dick nods. “Immensely.” I slide a small, bacon-wrapped scallop between her lips, and her tongue swirls around my finger.
“So am I.”
Called it. “Suck it harder,” I tell her—only half joking.
When I reach for another piece, Kate says, “Now, where have I heard that before?”
“Get used to hearing it more. There’s a good chance it’ll be my mantra for the next three weeks.”
“Hello,” Alexandra calls from where she’s crouched behind Kate. “We can hear you. And . . . ewwww.”
“Yet you’ll still never be as damaged as I was by what I heard from your f**king room in Vegas.”
The peroxide didn’t work. Sometimes, late at night, I can still hear them.
I’m considering therapy. Or hypnosis.
She just grins slyly. “That was a great morning.”
“What was a great morning?” Steven asks, as he brings my sister a cocktail.
She looks at Steven the way a twelve-year-old looks at a Justin Bieber poster. “Every morning with you.”
He kisses her lips.