Sequel: Good Enough
Status: Finished: The sequel is up! Read this, then go read that! (That's how sequels work) <3

Strong Enough


As anxiety plagued the girl behind me in white, my resolve to ignore the boy beside me was faltering. We only stood in the hallway for ten minutes waiting to start the ceremony, but it was starting to feel like it would never end.

Bryden didn’t talk to me. He just stared. Or rather, gawked. And I was starting to get extremely uncomfortable under his gaze. I was seconds away from punching him, or yelling or pulling his hair, when Diablo appeared and ushered us into the positions we’d been practicing the day before.

Not a minute later, the music started and “The Way You Look Tonight” floated in the air. I watched as Rylan and Emma walked around the corner and out of my sight in a flutter of purple. A few seconds later, Diablo was pushing Mia and Tommy to follow. Before they disappeared, Mia caught my attention and rolled her eyes making my vanished smile reappear. I was grateful and a few seconds after that, Bryden and I were being forced to follow. I slipped my arm into his, held the smile on my face and walked slowly into the sight of the guests.

I caught sight of a few people I knew, mostly family, but my eyes were quickly pulled to the nervous face of my brother. I smiled at him as Bryden and I moved closer. Just before we separated I mouthed ‘She’s beautiful’, and took my place next to Mia.

As I settled into my position, the guests stood and Lee appeared next to her dad. She was smiling ear-to-ear, nothing be the purest happiness evident on her face. I glanced over to my brother and saw the nerves instantly dissipate. He was looking at his bride and it was as if he was really seeing her for the first time and falling in love all over again.

As she reached the end of the aisle, her dad pressed a kiss to her cheek and smiled down at her, placing her hand in Alex’s before claiming his seat next to his wife. The music quieted as the minister began to speak.

“Friends and family, on behalf of Leeana and Alexander, it is my honor to welcome you this afternoon. Today we are witnessing the joining of two lives, two families, and two hearts. Leeana and Alex have been together for 2 years and have spent that time learning about one another and coming to find the missing piece of themselves in each other. In Greek mythology, it was believed that people were originally created with four arms, four legs and two faces. Zeus feared their power though, and separated them, condemning humans to search for their other halves. Many of us know Lee and Alex and knew that their search is over.”

As he continued to speak I watched as Alex and Lee smiled and stole glances at each other. Even a blind man could see the amount of love they each held for the person whose hand they held.

My eyes wandered from their faces to the one just beyond. Bryden was also intently watching the bride and groom, the smile on his face growing as theirs did. I couldn’t help but notice how much older Bryden looked. He’d always had a young look to him, but now his features were sharper. His jaw was stronger, more defined, but his eyes were still kind. His blond hair was shorter now, no longer hanging into his eyes.

I hated that he looked so good. I hated that he looked better than I remember. And I hated that I couldn’t take my eyes off of him. There was some force outside of my control that was keeping my eyes trained on his features.

As if he could feel my eyes on him, Bryden looked over to me. And while I wanted to look away, to pretend I hadn’t been examining him, I couldn’t pull away from his gaze. We were locked onto each other. I was getting lost in the blue orbs and I was starting to forget how badly I wanted to look away.

When Alex and Lee turned to recite their vows, I somehow pried my eyes away from the man I was so confused about. I took the bouquet Lee gave to me as she placed her hands in Alex’s. I was more than happy to watch the happy couple and was determined to keep my eye from wandering any more.

“Leeana, you are the one thing I want to see when I wake up in the morning. You’re all I ever think about when we’re apart and you’re the last thing I want to see when I got to sleep at night. When things go haywire and I start to stress out, you always pull me back. You make the hard times easier and the good times a million times better. I love you. And I always will.” Alex smiled as he spoke and I could tell that all he wanted to do was kiss her.

“If I could take every cheesy love song and put them all into one, it wouldn’t amount to how much I love you. You changed my life in the best way the day we met, and you’ve been changing my life every day since. I never knew I could be this happy until you came into my life. You make me want to be better. And I am so excited to call you my husband and make sure every girl knows you’re taken.” There was a chorus of laughter as Lee finished her vows.

The minister had them repeat the traditional vows while they exchanged rings before getting to the part they’d been waiting for.

“Do you, Alexander Walker, take Leeana Stevens to be your lawfully wedded wife?”

“You bet your ass I do.” His smile widened.

“Do you, Leeana Stevens, take Alexander Walker to be your lawfully wedded husband?”

“Hell yeah.” Lee let out a sigh.

“By the power vested in me, I now pronounce you husband and wife. Now go kiss you bride.”

Alex’s hands found Lee’s face and he pulled her into their first married kiss. Everyone cheered and you could see them smiling against each other’s lips. When they pulled away again, I handed Lee her flowers and mirrored her smile.

“Ladies and gentlemen, for the first time, Mr. and Mrs. Alex Walker!” Alex and Lee held up their hands and started walking back down the aisle as bubbles were blown and ‘I do’ by Colbie Caillat started streaming over the crowd.

I met Bryden in the middle and we started moving down the aisle behind the happy couple. His hand found mine and I tried not to remember how we’d stared at each other moments before as we twisted and danced to the music. As we reached the end again, I caught his eye once again. This time though, I broke the connection and quickly walked away to congratulate my brother and new sister-in-law.

I smiled and squealed with Lee and made fun of my brother because his bride is funnier than he is. And while I may have played the calm bridesmaid on the outside, I could feel his eyes on me. I could feel his presence behind me. I knew he was there.

And that made everything just that much worse.
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It's shorter than usual, but this was a good stopping point I thought.
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