Epilogue: Cam Always Gets the Final Word
"Megan you're my best friend. I'll always be your best friend. I'll even forgive you for slapping me the night you told me you were marrying Charlie and I told you, you were crazy. Yes I'm very ready to accept that apology whenever you decide to give it," I said pouting almost like a child while people chuckled appreciating my feeble attempt at a joke. "But even though Charlie's an idiot I can't think of any idiot that seems to make you happier. So I'm gonna raise up my fifth glass of wine," people chuckled again, "and toast it you Meg, my best friend, and you Charlie, her favorite idiot."
People chuckled as I gulped down the entire glass (I wasn't kidding about it being my fifth) and swayed on the spot. Sean valiantly stood up to make his own speech and in the process steadied me back into my chair. "Breathe baby," he whispered kissing me on the check and straightening up nervously to face the crowd.
"Hi I'm Sean the best man," Sean said nervously tugging at his tie and I had to laugh to myself since it was Sean who kept mocking me for being nervous about my speech. A couple of people around me looked over at me a little shiftily but I just smiled brightly back at them and grabbed Sean's hand hoping to quell his nerves.
He looked down at me for a second then started his speech for real this time. "I've known Charlie since the very first day we both showed up at a Notre Dame practice together. I've known him through wild nights, bad break ups- sorry about that one Meg-" he interrupted himself and gave Meg a funny smile which I laughed about remembering that whole thing junior year but seeing as no one else laughed I just got more awkward looks, "and well I knew you through the loves of our lives," Sean continued trying to hide the smile I knew he was concealing at my antics.
"I know I wasn't much help with some things but the best part of it all is that even with Sean the Pessimist you two still managed to make it through and, even though you're both young, I'm still as sure as I am that the sun will rise that you to will be as happy as ever," Sean pulled out faster than I knew he thought he was speaking. "So to Megan and her idiot- damn I mean Charlie," he hit himself on the forehead and fell back heavily into his chair beside me and I chuckled to myself grabbing another glass of wine.
"I did better than you," I sang into his ear while he scowled.
"Cam," he warned me as I giggled fairly uncontrollably.
"Yes Seany?" I asked still singing.
"That's it." He grabbed my hand and put my wine back on the table before I could get another sip. He practically lifted me out of my chair and I don't know if I was just drunk or if he was carrying me but I felt as though I was floating out toward the dance floor.
"No Sean I'm too drunk to dance," I giggled at the alliteration and he shook his head.
"You'll dance and you'll like it," he muttered putting me back on my feet and his arm firmly around my waist to keep me from tumbling over.
"No spinning," I commanded as he mostly just swayed on the spot knowing I wasn't in much of a condition to move about the floor with my usual grace.
After about four dances of us basically just standing there with me semi-sleeping with my head on Sean's shoulder Sean suddenly stopped and I slowly pulled my head up to see my daddy standing there with Sean still holding me firmly up.
"Hi daddy," I whispered (maybe I really was sleeping) trying to suppress a yawn.
"Sean mind if I dance with my daughter?" my dad asked politely as Sean tried not to laugh at the horrible sight that I was.
"'Course," Sean replied to my dad. "Just be careful she's a little… y'know…"
"I'm not drunk if that's what you mean," I replied scowling and poking him in the chest.
My dad chuckled sounding so much older than I remember him always being. He seemed to have more gray hairs too. "Don't worry I won't drop her."
Sean nodded and transferred my grasp on his arm to my dad's then wondered back to his seat to maybe steal a glass of wine since I'd been drinking all of his.
"So you think you'll be next?" my daddy asked into my ear as I concentrated hard on trying to keep my feet in place just to prove Sean wrong.
I looked up at him startled. "Next for what?" I asked my eyes wide slightly out of fear… ok mostly out of fear.
"Oh Cam you'll never change will you?" he said to himself as I settled back into my steps trying not to pout.
"I love Sean daddy but we're both too young to get married. It's a mutual decision to wait," I said firmly which isn't exactly true. Sean's asked me a couple times I just start crying every time and tell him I'm not ready to finish my book and he just kisses me and says that's fine. I don't think he was ever expecting a yes because he never brought out a ring so perhaps he just likes to see me panic about that kind of thing. I mean a year and a half isn't that long to be dating.
"And you two… Chicago eh?" he asked slowly.
"It's where he got drafted," I muttered back.
"I know sweetheart," daddy sang slightly seeing that I might have a panic attack. "I'm very proud of you honey," he said sweetly twirling me like I was a six year old ballerina again. "I always knew you'd grow into the type of woman that I could be proud of."
"Thanks daddy," I whispered really proud that he'd say those things about me.
"You have a lot of fun in front of you darling. Your house is beautiful and the best is yet to come," he muttered as he pulled me back to him and led me back to my seat where Sean sat waiting with all four of my sisters. "Better go rescue him," my dad chuckled.
It was weird how well Sean got on with my family. Of course I expected my sisters to love him immediately and probably for all the wrong reasons, but they love that he lets them make fun of him as much as they wish and he never gets offended. My mother just seemed relieved that I was finally bringing home a guy and she loved that he would do all the stupid little household chores that my dad always refused to do. My dad loved that they could talk football together forever. Sean found them all very entertaining and quickly adopted my sisters as his own.
Kev and I constantly make fun of him for being so sentimental. Don't tell him that though.
"Your speech was really dreadful Sean," I heard Tammy say smiling at Sean.
"I know it was, wasn't it," he replied back evenly and smiling slightly. He looked really cute with his five o'clock shadow (Which is a fairly new development. Sean has much more facial hair than I remember him having a year and a half ago. It's cute though.) his tie thrown haphazardly around his neck and hair pointing in every direction.
"Basically," Taylor said from her spot on Sean's knee. Taylor once fell asleep on Sean's knee the first week I brought him home for the summer and ever since then they've reached this silent agreement that it's her preferred spot at least until she gets a bit older. For now she's nine and thinks boys have cooties and Sean sees her as his own little sister.
"Hey there little bug," he growled lightly messing up her hair.
She looked at him in indignation and tried to smooth her hair back out. "Hey that took me hours y'know!"
I laughed as I pulled over a chair of my own and let myself into their little group.
"I see you managed not to fall," Sean said smiling at me while I glared back.
"See I told you I'm not drunk."
"I am," Kelly said raising her hand. "But only drunk enough to know how bad I want to ask Frank Rennings to dance," she said getting up and actually not showing any signs of drunkenness. She thinks that Sean and I don't hear from Frank almost weekly about how much he likes my little sister. The best part is I think they might actually be exclusive. Kelly exclusive? I know. It's weird.
"Cammy do you think that Megan's cousin will dance with me?" Ellen asked softly and innocently. I hate how she has so little confidence. Meg's cousin will definitely dance with her. He's basically been checking her out all day.
I just smiled at her. "He has been checking you out all day. I say go for it babe," I replied solidly, not slurring anymore, but suddenly having a strong urge to pee.
I followed Ellen into the crowd then across the dance floor to the bathroom.
"Cam you in here?" I heard a voice that was distinctly Megan's call into the bathroom.
"Yep," I replied slinging open the door and crossing to the sinks as soon as I finished.
"I feel like I haven't seen you all day," she said sounding close to tears.
"It's okay," I replied soothingly even though I myself felt tears pressing at the corners of my eyes. "We have the rest of our lives to hang out."
She nodded and smiled. "I hope so."
"Pish-posh. You know that it'll take more than getting married for you to get rid of me," I said wagging my finger at her.
She chuckled and the tears really broke out this time. "I can't believe you just said pish-posh," she giggled trying to wipe her eyes. "Charlie and I are leaving as soon as I leave this bathroom," she said quietly and I smoothed out her makeup.
I smiled at her. "Go on then," I said supportively.
"Maybe I'm scared it'll never be just you and I again," she whispered with her jaw quivering and her eyes shining again.
"Meg we still have plenty of adventures ahead of us; they may not be late night drunken dorm parties, but adventures nonetheless," I said sweetly and led her by the hand back out of the bathroom and right to Charlie. "Take good care of my best friend," I said handing him her hand and hugging her one last time before he led her off to throw her bouquet.
I decided not to stick around for that tradition. Let that one wait for someone who isn't as happy with where she is right now.
I wondered back to my seat with Sean to find him sitting all alone. "You finally got rid of my sisters then?" I asked sitting beside him.
"Nope they ditched me to go fight over a bundle of flowers," he said simply smiling at me.
I couldn't help it if it was at this exact moment that my eyes just seem to pop and tears ran down my cheeks without a sound. "It's all changing isn't it?" I asked Sean as he pulled me to stand with my face pressed against his chest.
"I won't lie and say it isn't. But does that have to be a bad thing?" he asked rubbing my back sweetly.
I shook my head pressed into his chest and felt a button move against my cheek. "No I'll just miss the way things were."
"You said goodbye to Meg then?" he asked knowing and I this time I nodded against him. "Yeah Charlie just said bye. It was very manly and unsentimental but I still couldn't help but be sad."
I pulled back to look at him with a little watery smile. "You can cry if you want," I said sarcastically and he smiled at me.
"I love you," he said looking at me all dreamily.
I wrinkled my nose. "I'm breaking up with you," I said sarcastically and not moving out of his arms.
"You do that a lot," he responded smiling.
"Well you say stupid things a lot."
He just laughed and kissed my forehead.
"Let's go home," I said finally after we stood like that for a long time.
He smiled and started to lead me out of the reception hall. "I'd love to but we're staying in a hotel tonight babe."
I hit him as hard as I could in the arm as we walked down the steps with his arm around me. "Don't be a smart ass."
God I'm gonna miss this story. I hope you will too. I loved your reviews even the ones bashing my corny "Camera" line. I get that it was corny but you have to remember that it was Charlie who came up with it.
This is the epilogue I was really talking about.
Man, now I'm sad...