Best and Honor

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Chapter 19

Sophie

I’d like to be able to say that once again I was the bigger person. If that were true, I would’ve forgiven Rachel and returned to my hotel room to sleep off the funk of finding out what a bitch she really is. Maybe I would have woken up refreshed and chipper, anxiously awaiting the day that I would get to see my best friend walk down the aisle to her future. Well, fuck that. This time I’m not the bigger person and it feels fantastic!

My aching heart still stings with the reminder of how I was fooled by both of them for quite some time, but I have a little peace in knowing it will never happen again. For the first time ever in my life, I have waged a war against an enemy and I don’t plan on taking any prisoners. I’d like to say I handled this like a lady, but if I’m honest, the first ten minutes of my biggest heartbreak was not very pretty.

I shoved Rachel out of the booth and after shouting a few choice words to her and all the backstabbing women who allowed me to remain in the dark, I threw a fit in the parking lot. I’m pretty sure I looked like a woman losing herself to madness as I screamed out loud and stomped my feet like a little kid. Then, the fog of my deception cleared and I got down to business.

As the plane takes off, I lean back in my seat with a contented smile on my lips, breathing out the vodka laced breath as passengers begin to fill the empty seats around me. A little giggle erupts from my chest as I think about how tomorrow will play out for my former bestie and her lying cheating asshole of a future husband. My seatmate looks down at me from where he’s standing in the aisle, puzzled at how he’s going to fit his carryon into the overhead.

I guess when you see a woman with a tear-streaked face, dressed like a streetwalker approach your station to board a plane you try to look the other way when she’s carrying on something as ridiculous as a million pounds of wadded up tulle and chiffon. The flight attendant has now made her way over and she carefully assesses the situation.

“Miss, could I hang this up for you? Maybe it would give everyone a little more room to store their things.” She looks at me sympathetically as she points to the torn ratted remains of Rachel’s wedding dress. I smile up at her and nod my head.

“Thanks. That would be awesome.” I don’t move to help her yank the tattered dress from the compartment, but I do see the knowing look she exchanges with the man waiting to store his items. They think I’ve lost my mind. I however, think this is the most clear my head has been in years.

My phone buzzes again and I see Andrew’s name flash across the screen. My heart clenches again and I feel the roll of nausea hit me as I shut down my phone for the flight. His little speech makes perfect sense now. He had told me I would need to believe he would know what is best for me. That I should trust him if he ever kept something from me, but I now know his secret and I think he’s almost as horrible as they are for allowing me to attend the stupid week of celebration for the people who were screwing behind my back in high school.

As we begin our taxi down the runway, I stare out at the dark night just outside my small window. What a turn of events. The lights twinkle back at me as we gain speed and I close my eyes and lean back against the headrest. Her missing wedding dress will probably be her first discovery and I almost wish I could see her face when she frantically tries to find it. Hopefully my burnt orange bride’s maid dress will be an OK substitute.

She’d given me her key to the room so that I could make sure she was tucked into bed safely at the end of the night. I decided perhaps she should be taught a little lesson in trust; after all I had trusted her and she had showed me what a big mistake that was. I also helped myself to her wedding binder, that ridiculously large planner that contained every tiny detail of tomorrow. Thank you, Rachel, for making this so easy.

I’m sure there are many wedding vendors that are used to last minute changes. They all seemed so nice to answer my very late night/early morning calls. With a steady voice, I happily informed them of a few changes I would like to make to my wedding plans. You see, it’s hard to argue with a bride who can tell you exactly where to switch something out for another.

For instance, when I told the DJ that my future husband and I had made a last minute decision to go with a song that held some sentiment, he got a little excited. I guess always playing the same boring songs for first dances can really wear on a man. He was happy to substitute Patty Loveless’ Blame it on Your Heart for the first dance in place of the cheesy Elvis song when I explained to him that it was the first song we ever danced to as a couple. I assured him all of our guests knew the history behind it, but it might be helpful remind everyone that the song represented a special time in our relationship.

The wedding cake baker was a little harder to convince when I told her that I had been thinking about how left out my close friends would feel if they too were not represented on the top of our cake. She tried hard to reason with me that it’s really only traditional to have a bride and groom as cake toppers, but I insisted she put a few more female figures up on top of the cake. With an exhausted sign she reluctantly agreed to add my requested entourage. It’s only right that I adjust the cake plans to more accurately depict the relationship it’s helping to christen.

The last of the vendors was very excited about the last minute change. I agreed that it was very charitable for Rachel and Evan make a donation to a cause in the name of each guest instead of giving out cheap wedding favors. How very big of them. I’m just happy that the coordinator was as big of an advocate for safe sex as I am. I worried it might be a tough sell to change the chosen charity from the very ineffective one that Rachel had chosen just to look good to one that offers free STD screening and pregnancy tests to the community. The very appreciative woman on the line assured me that all the cards placed at each seat would proudly display the new charity and their mission.

With my evil plan in full swing, and Rachel’s wedding binder on its way down to the very bottom of the first swampy river I found, I’m able to relax again. My roommates are waiting for my plane to arrive and have promised to have a freezer stocked full of the necessary ice cream to get me through the heartache I know is going to hit me as soon as the adrenaline wears off. In the mean time, I’m going to try to get some sleep so this departure from hell won’t seem to take as long.

Just as I begin to drift off to sleep, I smile with the memory of calling my mother to warn her of my absence tomorrow. I’d worried she would freak out about my plan, but upon hearing the details of Evan and Rachel’s disgusting secret, she offered to stand guard at Rachel’s door as I began phase one of burning the already dilapidated bridge of our friendship. My father didn’t weigh in, just nodded his head when I emerged from the room with shreds of the dress dragging along the ground behind me.

I don’t think that my actions will affect their marriage, maybe the ceremony a touch but not the actual vows they will say to each other. As much as I wish it were different, I have learned that a person is who they are and I can’t change that. If Rachel wants to be a liar and insists on competing with me, then I have no way of influencing her choices. If Evan is going to be a selfish asshole that constantly cheats on the women he’s with, then there isn’t anything I could do about that either. The only part of this whole mess that seems so unjust is that I can’t do anything to make Andrew change his natural inclination to protect his best friend at all costs. In the end, he chose his best friend over my heart.

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