Bringing you up to speed, I was at Rebecca’s party, and I was feeling pretty good about myself.  I guess after she had her fill of talking to everybody else, Rebecca made her way back to the living room. She made her way to the front of the room. “Everyone, I have an announcement.”

Hmm, I wonder what this could be. Maybe she had a big part. Maybe she’d be looking for a leading man!

“I invited you all here for a reason.” I don’t like the sound of that. It’s the sort of thing Bond villains typically say either because they’re about to take over the world or kill their henchmen. Little did I realize it would actually be worse.

“I talked to Max today.” Max? Who is this Max?

“He asked me to marry him.” And you said no, right? RIGHT?

“And I said yes.”

And then my friend, I died. At least I felt that way. I just had my heart – which hadn’t fully healed from losing my beautiful Natalie – broken again. I thought one day, my stories about telling Rebecca I had the same first name or driving my car into a ditch over her would be cute antidotes I’d tell our grandchildren. But any dreams of that were shattered in an instant. Rebecca was one in a million, one in a billion, one in a googolplex – the girl of my dreams and I lost her to all time.

The rest of the night wasn’t much better. Everyone else was fawning over Rebecca, and congratulating her. Wound – meet salt. And vinegar. And some orange juice. With a hint of battery acid.

The next Monday I told my friends about Rebecca’s Mola Ram impression… You know, Mola Ram, the guy who ripped out that guy’s heart in Temple of Doom. Yeah, I guess that reference was a little obscure. But my “friends” (I like when I write it like that – I don’t have to do the Dr. Evil thing) showed me no sympathy.

Ben Giggard’s only response was “Robert, are you pulling our chain?”

“Why would I make up a girl only to say she dumped me?”

“Because that’s what you do! You make things up!”

“When have I other made things up?”

Ben gave me a dirty look. That Eggs Benedict Arnold, Simon chimed in: “You know, this really isn’t that different from your claim about Natalie Rowe.”

“Don’t bring her into this! I can tell you a lot about Rebecca! She’s an actress…”

“Just like Natalie!”

“Okay, I guess it’s time to come clean. I may have… exaggerated about a few things in the past. For example, when I claimed to have finally found the formula for cold fusion, it was actually just hot sauce – hot sauce that burn a hole through you! When I claimed that I flew a plane to Peru with both arms tied behind my back, I fibbed. I only had one arm tied behind my back. And that bare knuckle boxing match I beat Floyd Mayweather in? It was just a standard boxing match.”

“Oh, I stand corrected. You sure shut me the hell up!”

I could tell there was no point in talking to him about it so I just closed the subject.

When I arrived at home, I poured my heart out to my mother about what happened – and how nobody believed me. Mom asked me, “Robert, did you take any lessons away from ‘The Boy Who Cried Wolf’?”

“Yes, they should have put someone else in charge of wolf duty!” Mom rolled her eyes at this. I quickly reminded her that the kids at school not believing me was tertiary to the fact that I had my heart broken. And it wasn’t just another crush. This was someone who was sending all the signs.

All my mom had to say was “Bobby, sometimes… other people have dreams that just don’t align with our dreams.”

I couldn’t believe it! My own mother, the person whose very job it was to take my side on things was against me in this matter. So many people didn’t even believe me, and those who believed me weren’t on my side! I mean seriously, TV has taught me time and time again that any time a good looking ladies’ man loses a girl, it’s a tragedy! Why didn’t my mother or anyone else care about my blithe? She betrayed me, everyone betrayed me. I’m fed up with this world!

So I decided to look up more information about this Max character. Max pffft, that’s not a name! Robert is a name, Max is a setting on an air-conditioner! Anyway, I had to know what kind of person made Ms. I-Don’t-Want-a-Relationship suddenly want a very permanent relationship. I couldn’t even believe my eyes! Max Headroom (Give me time to think of something a little more derogatory) wasn’t even that good-looking. Yeah, I know when you compare ANYONE to my devastating good looks, anyone else is going to be a distant second. But this guy wasn’t even in the top five! I could have had some form of quasi-acceptance if this bastard were handsome like Benedict Cumberbatch or Jason Statham, but not this plain John!

I guess now that I knew what he looked like, I could hire myself a hitman, thus putting this cad out of my misery. Then I remembered that even if I hired someone else to do it, whacking this guy would probably get a permanent stay in the grey bar motel. So I couldn’t kill the guy – maybe I’d have him beaten to a pulp and make him wish he was dead! Oh yeah, that’s illegal too… I know, I’ve seen it in enough romantic comedies – I’d spike his beverage, giving him the poops. I was kindly informed THAT’s illegal too! God, why is the world so unaccommodating to people with a petty grudge to settle!

As if I wasn’t feeling lousy enough, I actually got an invitation to the wedding. Somehow, I don’t think sending a picture of the Eastwood scowl from Gran Torino would have communicated the message. I surprisingly didn’t have much else on my plate so I guess I was going. Hey, maybe there’d be some hot bridesmaids!

I decided to cook up a few ideas to maybe break up the wedding and abscond with Rebecca. Maybe I’d take a page from The Graduate. Maybe I’d pull the old switcheroo. That fiend Max would go for his kiss only to find yours truly under the veil. Nah, that wouldn’t work. I might end up kissing Max. Or worse, what if that counted as ME marrying him? Sadly, there were other forces at work. Mom somehow caught wind of what I was planning on doing.

“Bobby, don’t you dare interfere in this wedding.”

“How dare you to ask me to sit idly by? What do you think you could to stand in the way of true love?”

“If you interfere, I will ground you. For life!”

Yeah, that’ll do it. Suddenly my priorities came back to me. “How would you feel if I interfered in Natalie Rowe’s wedding?”

Mom had to think for a moment. “You can do whatever you want at Natalie Rowe’s wedding.” Yes! It was nice to know she was on my side for something!

So the big day came. I sat in the pew of the wedding. I saw my mortal enemy Max staring at the end of the altar. Of course, he was the silver medal holder compared to the rat fink who had robbed me of my beautiful Natalie. Oh, and let’s not forget Marshall – Yeah, he took Carrie, who I don’t want to go out with, but I still I resented him for it. And I began to think… I’m 17, how the hell do I have so many enemies?

As I tried to figure out the answer to that, she came out. Rebecca looked ravishing in her wedding dress, which only made watching her walk toward the altar all the more painful. I wanted to get her out of that wedding dress for every reason you might think of. I sat there in the pew, fuming as I counted down the moments until the woman I loved would be taken away from me forever.

The moment of truth came when the priest asked if she took that “man” to be his lawfully wedded husband. In the short time before her answer, all I could think was “Say no! Please just reveal this was all some elaborate hoax! I’ll forgive you.” No luck, she said “I do.”

The priest then said his famous line “If anybody has reason that these two shouldn’t wed, let them speak now or forever hold their peace.” I wondered how many people have actually stood up and said something. I think realistically, most people do what I did. They just sat there, feeling more powerless than I have ever felt in my life.

After the wedding, everybody had their party. I say THEY had their party because their dancing and music and festivities was nothing more than a soundtrack to the saddest I had ever felt in my life. I just sat there, wallowing in my misery. I had watched everyone else’s wildest dreams come true, not one of which involving me.

I sat there watching Rebecca dance with her new husband, the look of joy on her face. It only broke my heart. I thought maybe I could have been the one to make her feel that way, but I’d never get the chance. No longer able to take it, I walked out.

I sat outside by myself. In short, I was just feeling sorry for myself in a change of location. I guess Rebecca saw me. She approached me. There were so many times I wanted to be alone with Rebecca. Right after her wedding was not one of them.

“Is something wrong, Bobby? You look like you just lost your best friend?” Boy Rebecca, you sure knew how to hit the nail on the head! I decided not to be coy. Instead, I laid it on the line. I told her exactly how I felt. I told her how in love with her I was, how she meant the world to me. How I wanted to be with her. “All those times we spent dancing, and cuddling, and you let me rub your back. Those meant the world to me. And I thought you felt the same way.”

Rebecca seemed at a loss of words. “I’m sorry Robert… You know, being flirty and having fun with guys – that’s just always the way I’ve been. I’m sorry if I hurt you.” You can plug in whatever break-up clichés you’ve probably heard or said before – you’re a nice guy. You’re probably gonna find someone – all that rubbish that everybody says but calls BS when they hear it themselves.

“Are you gonna be okay? You look like you’re gonna cry.”

“No, I’m not gonna cry.” I’m not gonna cry…

Copyright 2015 Alex deCourville

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