A Wedding in Scarlet


            Gabby’s hand was getting sore.  She’d been pounding her fist against the bathroom door for what must have been ten minutes, and it was taking a toll on the meaty part of her palm.

            “How are none of you looking for me?!” she yelled.  She pounded against the door, a quick drum roll of dull thuds.  “You can’t have a wedding without the damn bride!”

            She lifted the ivory puff of bridal gown that was pooled around her feet and kicked the bottom of the door.

            Her maid of honor and half of her bridesmaids had been waiting for her just outside the bathroom when she’d gone in.  But somehow they couldn’t hear her screaming and pounding against the stuck bathroom door.

            “Miranda!”  Gabby’s frustration was becoming too much for her to handle.  She felt a panic attack coming on.  She shuffled back three steps and sat down on the lid of the toilet. 

            She took two slow, deep breaths.  It was her goddamned special day and she was trapped in the stupid bathroom and somehow nobody even seemed to notice or care that she was missing and…

            She took two more breaths.  She closed her eyes for the last one and kept them closed.

            “Everything is going to be perfect,” she whispered to herself.  “Everyone got distracted by the cocktail hour, but it’s only a matter of time before they realize that they left me up here.”  Her eyes still closed, she reached up and touched the bejeweled tiara that held up her hair.  “Then everything is going to be perfect.”

            There was a long, slow creak.

Gabby opened her eyes to find the door open by about four inches, opened just wide enough to get a hand through it.  She waited for whoever had opened it to pull it further, to swing it open and ask her what was taking so long or if she needed help with her dress.  She stared at the door.  She thought it must only be a matter of time before someone pulled it open, completely open, but no one did.