The Wedding Bells – Part 7 (Flash fiction chain # 6 )

img_9020-fileminimizerOnce again, a group of writers from different parts of the globe join forces to create one linear adventure. The theme this time? Love.

The photograph above serves as the inspirational theme for the 6th Flash Fiction Chain hosted by Jithin of ProTraBlogger. Give his beautiful site a visit and feast your eyes on the inspirational photos or read about his exciting adventures.

A comprehensive list of important characters in the story:

(Main)

Anna Brighton- a 32 year old CEO that owns and runs a publishing company

Alex Burns – well established author, Anna’s ex, Toby Blackwell’s cousin

Melissa Doyle – the bride, Anna’s dear friend

Toby Blackwell – co-owns the Blackwell estate, Alexis’ cousin

(Supporting characters)

Jenny- Anna’s secretary

Adam – Owner of Adam and Eve’s

Harrison – Melissa’s fiance.

Percy Tuppence – Owner of the ring shop

I am entrusted to write  Part 7 of the story… To know what has happened already, check out the previous six parts below…

PART 1 by Sona

PART 2 by Yinglan

PART 3 by Priceless Joy

PART 4 by Frenesthetist

PART 5 by Dr Ko

PART 6 by Sweety

Part 7

Alex stared off into the road. His mind was running at a hundred miles an hour while he chewed the inside of his lip; contorting his face in grimace and frown.

What had he hoped for with Anna? He didn’t feel that way any more, did he? They had been good together once, but breaking up had been for the best. Was it pride? She had cut their relationship short claiming she couldn’t stand not being the thing he loved the most in the world. Unusually for him, he’d had no words in response. He’d felt she was right, even if he didn’t like it. But recently…

He felt a gentle tug on his trousers. Looking down he saw the smiling face of a little girl. It was Sara the flower girl. She had a gap toothed smile, resting peacefully under bright eyes.

“Hello little princess,” he said, squatting down to meet her at eye level. “What’s that you got there?” he asked, gesturing to the cone and flowers in her hand.

“Cupid chose me to carry the flowers.”

“The perfect choice,” Alex said, smiling.

“He left the flowers outside my door. Mum says it’s because I have a loving heart, and that my spirit is pure. I think you have a pure spirit too,” she said.

“Thanks very much Sara, it’s nice to know someone does,” he said, mussing her hair and smiling at her.

Sara blushed and looked down, giggling excitedly.

“Now come on, let’s go and find your mother. I reckon she’ll be missing her princess.”

*****
The speedometer revved past 50 and Anna felt a thrill in her stomach; part fear, part ecstasy. She hadn’t had a chance to cut loose and let herself feel out of control for so long. Work, relationships, family, friends; all were tied to a fierce distance she maintained for a feeling of control.
She had memories of the girl she was before the publishing, before the stress and the meetings and the packed schedule. She’d been a dreamer, a free spirit ghosting from place to place in search of feelings and experiences. She would read and learn and chase and dream. She had Alex, and they chased this together.
Somehow it had all changed, suddenly and painfully. He had become a different man, tuned into new feelings that weren’t programmed into her, alien and electronic, foreign and coded. They stayed as robots, connecting in only words – not touch nor soul. She had felt him drift away from her, his touch metallic and slowly his words became so too; the scripted auto cue of embrace left them both unloved and unloving, forging escape plans and exit strategies until the warmth left them both fully, and she closed the door for good.
She’d never imagined they would cross paths again. She definitely didn’t expect it to be this way. He’d taken the words from her, and so she had made her own. Now she had the power to take his words back…
“Are you ok?” asked Toby, changing gear to pull up at a red light. He glanced at her and she felt her body blush. Those dimples.
“Yes, I’m fine. I am enjoying your driving,” she said.
“That’s great darling. Let me know if I am going too fast, I can always go slower,” he said, his voice implying a wink.
“Tobias, you’re so bad,” she said, giggling.
“You don’t know the half of it. Give me a bottle of wine and some massage oil and I’ll show you how bad I can really get,” he said with a smirk as the light changed and he revved off.
They sped down the high street, past the Greenacre pub and the Landsdowne village hall. The sun was shining brightly and Anna was enjoying the feel of the wind in her hair again; had it been so long since she’d felt this?
They pulled up at another traffic light outside a café, and Toby glanced over at her.
“So many red lights. It’s like someone wants us to have a lot of time together,” he said. He was looking at her like she was a lolly on a hot day.
“Or they want to slow us down,” she said, returning the look. His shirt, taught over sinew, was making her heart drum with hunger for an embrace.
“Who would want to slow us down? We need to get that ring or the wedding is ruined. This isn’t some bad romantic comedy,” he said, bellowing a laugh and placing a hand behind her head on the head rest. “Though I guess, if the universe wants it,” he said, leaning in, “we could give it one.”
She felt herself leaning toward him, but as she did she noticed something out of the corner of her eye.
“Wait, is that Harrison?” she said. Toby turned to follow her gaze. Harrison was inside the café holding the hand of a tall, slender and rather beautiful woman.
“What’s he doing here? And who the hell is that?” she asked.
“The bloody blighter’s just having some tea darling, nothing to worry about.”
As Toby said this they both saw Harrison lean in and kiss the woman on the cheek, then mutter something that made both him and the woman laugh.
“That piece of shit,” she yelled.
Toby was staring open-mouthed. “I’m sure there’s an explanation. Harrison is a stand up guy, straight as an arrow that lad, never been the Casanova type” he said.
“Yeah right! It’s so rare to see wealthy men betraying their wives and girlfriends!” she said. Her voice had been raised, and she realised she was letting her passions get the better of her. “I’m going to confront him,” she said, as a car behind them beeped it’s horn. Toby hit the accelerator and sped off down the road before she had a chance to open her door.
“Stop right now, we need to turn around and confront him,” she said.
“Look Anna, right now we need to get that ring. I’m not saying that what we just saw isn’t odd, but there’s got to be an explanation. Harrison just isn’t like that.”
“I don’t care what you say, I know what I saw. We have to got back,” she said.
“Let’s make a deal,” he said, turning to face her. “Once we have the ring we can go back and say whatever you want. I will back you up and support you, no matter what you want to do. We can kill him if you’d like.”
“That’s so sweet of you – wait, kill him?!”
“Yeah, if you want,” he said, his face straight.
“Are you joking?”
“Of course I am,” he said. She let out a huge sigh of relief. “I mean, unless you want to?” he said, smiling at her.
“You’re right, it’s probably nothing,” she admitted finally, as they pulled up outside the ring shop.
“Like I said, let’s focus on getting that ring first and then worry about mysterious women. Now, where were we?” he said, leaning in to kiss her.
She could feel her heart racing again, desperate for his lips. She could smell him as he leant in, a mixture of masculine musk and subtle aftershave. She put her hand up to touch his stubble on his cheek, she could feel his dimples, this was it…

There was a knock on the window. Anna looked out and saw the helpful and pasty face of Percy Tuppence, the ring maker. He didn’t look like he had been aged but rather, had been pickled. His thinning grey hair was gently being lifted by a slight breeze in the air as his tiny eyes tried to focus behind thick glasses. She wound down her window as Toby straightened up in his chair.

“Hello folks, sorry to interrupt. Miss Doyle called ahead and said I should wait outside with the ring for a red Mercedes,” said Percy softly.

“Thanks,” said Toby sarcastically. Even grumpy he was sexy. Anna felt frustrated she had been so close to getting her kiss, she wanted it more than ever now.

“I appreciate it. Can I have it now,” she asked.

“Oh of course, where is my mind,” he said, reaching a hand into his pocket. “It’s right here,” he said, rummaging around. However, when he retrieved his hand there was no ring. “Oh silly me, I’ve left it inside,” he announced in a croaking voice to the street. “Please bear with me one second while I fetch it,” he said before turning and shuffling back into the shop.

“Is he for real?” asked Toby. Anna found Toby’s subtle anger a little exciting. His attitude, she supposed, was not just from the frustration at the ring maker but also from his desperation to kiss her. It felt nice to be wanted, she hadn’t felt it for so long.

Percy appeared in the doorway with a ring box in his hand and was stepping cautiously on the pavement. As he was about two steps from the car a tramp ran over to him, grabbed the box, and pushed him to the floor.

Toby was out of the car in a flash and straight after the tramp. They disappeared down an alley and out of sight. Anna got out of the car to help the fallen Percy.

As she stepped onto the curb her phone began to ring. She answered instinctively, not giving herself time to see who it was.

“Hello,” she said.

“Hi Anna, it’s Mel. Where are you?”

“Just at the ring shop now.”

“Is everything ok? Is it Toby? Has he stolen your heart?” she said.

“Things are definitely getting stolen here.”

“You sound distracted. Are you two planning on running off with the ring?”

“Not both of us…”

“Are you joking?”

“We didn’t plan it…”

“Anna, are you coming back with the ring?”

“Sorry Mel, I can’t hear you, there’s a tunnel, an… rain… engine”.

She crouched down and helped Percy to his feet.

“How easy would it be to replace that ring?” she asked.

“Not very, it’s one of a kind. I had to get stuff specially shipped in.”

“It’s ok, I’ve got a plan.”

 

Stay tuned – part 8 coming next from Ruth

Part 9 by Austin

Part 10 by Rashmi

Part 11 by Phaena

Part 12 by Manvi

Part 13 by Sona

Part 14 by Yinglan

Part 15 by Yinglan

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51 thoughts on “The Wedding Bells – Part 7 (Flash fiction chain # 6 )

  1. Oh wow !!! You got me so glued to the story…enjoyed every bit of it…Alex’s feelings ,the thrilling car ride , the kiss that never happened , Harrison’s mystery girl and the tramp !!! It was as if I was right in the middle of all of it..
    I loved the fact that you kept Toby’s character the same way I had portrayed in my part..the charmer…It was exactly what I had on mind when I wrote my part , only more thrilling and adventurous 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks a lot Sweety. I tried to stick to the characters everyone already established and stay true to the storyline. Looks like there’s a lot to come from everyone here. Great story from all involved 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh my!!! You write like a professional novelist. You put the right amount of romance and mystery. I don’t know why, but the lines about the Alex and Anna’s being not programmed for that… alien and electronic , foreign and coded actually made me laugh. Nice words you chose. I’ll have to read the full story now.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh my!!! You write like a professional novelist. You put the right amount of romance and mystery. I don’t know why, but the lines about the Alex’s feelings and Anna not being programmed for that.. Alien and electronic , foreign and coded actually made me laugh. What a choice of words!! I’ll have read the full story. I m hooked.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Oh good lord! Whew! There were some steamy moments here in there for Anna and Toby! It was just sublime! I must say, what a truly captivating read! Those damn dimples! 😀 You’ve added a great touch to Alex’s perspective at the beginning of the story. It got me giddily giggling all throughout the story. Superb writing Toby! 😀

    Liked by 2 people

    • Oh Abs you dear, thank you. I hope it fits in with the story so far. I wanted to put ol’ Adam in there but you did such a good job I just couldn’t 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      • It does connect to the story very well! I absolutely adore Mr. Blackwell’s character. Would love to see more of him and see how Alex is going to own up to his feelings for Anna. Plenty on possible things to happen in the next parts. Must wait and see 😀 Adam could make Anna a wedding dress at the end of the story if someone pops the question 😉

        Liked by 1 person

      • That would be a nice end 🙂 who knows. Plenty more to come, I think we’re only about half way through. Exciting stuff 😀 sterling effort by the team so far. When’s your next poem up?

        Liked by 1 person

      • It would certainly be a happy ending but then again, having a wedding is another way of saying that somebody is going to get laid 😛 yes, reading each parts is truly enjoyable. Actually there’s a new one right now. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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  6. Bravo! I am enjoying the tension between two male characters, neither one a villain!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I think it’s a lovely challenge to write a romance where there aren’t black and white characters and there are just people, who are complicated and can do dumb things…. and wish they hadn’t.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yeah I think those themes are universal and transcend race/culture/nationality. It is more a reflection of the human condition, that need for love and the obstacles that we and the universe create for ourselves

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I know you can very well relate with Toby 😉 Great continuation mate, and cool..no hot subliminal messages here and there 😛 And I loved that twist at the end.

    Liked by 1 person

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  10. Excellent! Kept me glued to it in suspense and I wasn’t ready for it to stop. Great job!

    Liked by 1 person

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  12. This calls for celebrations for another great piece written by you. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it. I had a big grin on my face to see the resemblence of names on updated post. What a co incidence ! The kiss, the mysterious women, the stolen ring surely kept me glued till end.

    Liked by 1 person

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  14. Wonderful job. The quality of writing is a exceptional and because of that a great engaging story is being told and continued. It amazing how many of the tropes and themes of classic loves stories have sort of work themselves in to this story. Very cool stuff.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah it’s funny how conventions manage to find themselves in, even when they are trying to be avoided 😛 Thanks for the comment 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Oh and just for the record I didn’t mean conventions in any snarky sense. And actually I am attracted to conventions in the sense that it gives the readers (and other writers in our case) familiar ground to stand on. And conventions seems to be a byproduct of larger Archtypal system that exists, which I am definitely interested in.

        It is also in playing with these conventions, mixing them like alchemists, that we can discover new recipes in Literature. Also when you think about it we wouldn’t criticize the painter for painting the world and its conventions or working in the conventions of the medium, nor the photographer.

        Anyway, sorry for the rant 🙂 Just an interesting subject, I think. I would love to hear any of your thoughts on the subject.

        Best wishes,
        Austin

        Like

      • I totally agree, it is a very interesting subject. And I love your image of writers as alchemists, stirring together convention to smith new ones. No offence taken, I agree with you. Glad it inspired a passion within you so strongly 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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  16. OHMGOD. What is even happening. This literally had me on the edge of my seat. It’s simply Brilliant. :O

    Liked by 1 person

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