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Marrying Down

It was a starry evening, I was standing on the pristine steps of our family church waiting for my little sister to arrive in her limousine for the rehearsal dinner. I stared at my reflection in my newest pair of dress shoes; my hair was oiled back, my tuxedo was spotless, my tie was a deep purple. I kept thinking about my sister walking between the pews tomorrow with our father, and our mother sitting in the front row with tears running down her face.
The white limousine slowly rolled to a stop in front of our church. I moved closer to open the door and my sister stepped out wearing a designer dress with matching stilettos. She looked up at me and smiled. “Well you look dashing,” she said. “Only for you sis,” I responded with a smirk. We walked up the marble steps and through the cherry-wood door into our church. “I love all the colors of the flowers,” she said as we walked arm-in-arm through the lobby. I looked all around at the roses, lilies, and tulips surrounding us, all waiting to be put on the tables as tomorrow’s decorations. We walked out the back door of our church to the porch, where all the round tables were covered in white lace skirts. I led her to her seat, “I’ll be sitting at the end of the tables to your left,” I told her as I walked away.
We were the first ones sitting down, more guests began to come in and take their seats. I saw our father walk in so I stood up and waved hello to him. His seat was in front of mine, his older brother, my uncle, was sitting next to him. They were both wearing new tuxes for this occasion.
“Hello old sport,” my father said.
“It’s been a long time, brother.”
“Much too long,” my father said sadly.
“I haven’t heard much about the groom or seen him for that matter, where is he?” my uncle inquired.
“He won’t be here for a while, that boy has no sense of time. He’s always late to everything; dinners, meetings, dates with my daughter. I don’t know how she puts up with that boy always being late. If I were him I would buy a pocket watch and make sure to chain it to my body.”
“Interesting,” my uncle replied. “How about his family, I don’t see any of his guests here yet, and we are supposed to be starting in half an hour.”
“To be honest, they are probably not even going to show tonight.”
“What do you mean?”
“Well I heard my daughter talking on the phone with that boy of hers yesterday, and he kept apologizing over and over. She kept asking him ‘why, why, why?’ He was saying he doesn’t think his family will show up to tonight rehearsal or the wedding tomorrow.”
“Why wouldn’t they come to such an important occasion?” my uncle asked. I leaned in closer to hear my father’s response.
“Don’t tell my daughter I told you this, but her boy said his family was too embarrassed to come to the wedding because they aren’t wealthy like us, but they are ashamed to even be in the same room with rich folk like us. Isn’t that absurd?”
I interrupted my father then, to have my say in the matter, “Why should wealth matter father? They should still come because they love their family.” At that point my father gave me a sad look as if I was still too young to understand the power of wealth like he knows. Then all of a sudden a whole group of poorly dressed mothers, fathers, cousins, children, and one groom all ran through the vine covered porch doors to each of their assigned lace tables.
“Well father it looks like you were wrong about them,” I said as a smirked at my sister. He gave me an annoyed look and went back to staring at the guests.
I’m happy for my sister today, today is the start of her new life, a joyful life where she won’t have to worry about the power of wealth, or the power of our father’s wealth again.




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