This was supposed to be my day.
The time where everyone would be looking at me, where everyone would be smiling and wanting to talk to me...the bride.
But instead, they gathered around Leah. They complimented her, they talked to her and laughed with her, even though she never really said anything.
Sam and I sat together in harmony, but I was wishing for people to congratulate me and wish me a happy life with the man I love.
Instead, they never bothered. They set the gifts on the tables laced with crappy Dollar Store cards filled with flimsy, generic messages. Not one person put thought into my special day.
Leah sat at an entirely different table, looking glum and aloof, despite that, she received at least seven different dance offers, which she all turned down.
For some reason, the best day of my life was turning sour.
I had received a few thank yous in person, but some of them were fake and unauthentic. Sometimes, I couldn't tell if the people were being sarcastic or really, really cheerful.
I wondered why so many people hadn't bothered to speak with me, I never pestered with Sam though, he looked so happy.
And when we finally danced our special dance, no one seemed to care enough. I heard chit-chatter among guests and laughter coming from the far corner. I saw people eating and conversing with their peers, I saw some guys hit on Leah...but not so many people were looking at me and Sam. No one was looking at us and smiling, no one was happy to see us dance.
After our dance, I excused myself from the floor and headed to the bathroom. It wasn't until then that I heard why people were so uninterested in the best day of my life.
I heard two ladies walk into the bathroom, each of their heels allowed me to distinguish who they were. Kelly Wallace, my high school colleague and Michelle Williams, my best friend. I was excited to see them that I very nearly jumped off the toilet seat to say hi, before I was cut off.
"This wedding is a joke," Michell snorted "Did you see the dress she was wearing? Where'd she get that from, a thrift store?"
I almost gasped. How could she? Michelle had been my best friend in high school, we've been together ever since I could remember. How could she say something like this?
Kelly coughed "Tell me about it. I'm only here for the free food"
They both laughed for a good five seconds before ending on one of those high pitched sighs "I bet you that ugly dress would look good on Leah, though" Michelle had said, and I scowled. "She such a beautiful girl,"
Kelly cackled "People are only here cause they feel sorry for her ever since she got mauled by a bear. I for one, call it karma"
"Bitchy," Michelle called her out , and I smiled a little. Though she was just talking crap, I always knew she'd have my back. "You know, I actually do feel sorry for her. But then again, the fact that she's a whore makes that hard"
Kelly smacked her lips "I know. I can't believe she fucking married him. Like wow, how low can you get?"
"You know, she's just a sob story that's gone to far." Michelle swallowed "Sam was in love with Leah for like, four years. I think Sam dumped Leah because he somehow feels responsible for the bear attack. I heard he and Emily were hiking together when it came by"
"Why were they even hiking together?" Kelly demanded,
"It's cause Emily had the hots for Leah's man then," Michelle explained, and I gagged. Sure, I always liked Sam but I would never try and act on my emotion. "So she persuaded him into leading her down the trail. Sam was a forest ranger then, so he was just doing his job"
"And then the bear came?" Kelly finished "It came an attacked Emily, first?"
"I heard Sam ran away," Michelle said "But I'm not sure. He's a big guy. They spotted the bear earlier, and Sam was telling her to stay away, but since she's always grasping for attention, she went over and fucked around, pissed the bear off and got attacked."
"So why should Sam feel sorry for the dumbass?" Kelly said, sounding surprised "I'd leave her for dead"
"He visited her in the hospital," Michelle continued "And she told him she had no one to take care of her, when she got discharged. So Sam felt bad and took it upon his responsibility— they've been together ever since"
"Leah must of been pissed," Kelly said thoughtfully "I mean damn. They were perfect for eachother, and here goes Emily fucking it all up"
"I know. They were so cute together in the halls. Now, Sam looks paranoid all the time"
"I know!" Kelly agreed, quickly "Did you see the way he looks at her? It's like he's waiting for her to trip or something stupid!"
"I guess he still feels guilty for her getting hurt, and doesn't want her condition to worsen"
"Wow. What a bitch" Kelly concluded "Poor Leah"
"I can't believe she puts up with Emily. I got tired of her after a while. She actually became her maid of honor. Like wow, the girl's got heart."
"She does. And she' hot." Kelly added thoughtfully "She doesn't need them. Did you see how tall she was? She can go off and become a model somewhere."
"Yeah. And did you know they're cousins?" I hadn't heard a response from Kelly, except I saw her mascara tube drop the floor and roll into my stall. I held my breath.
"Oh shit," Kelly murmured "Is she—?"
"Fuck" I heard Michelle curse.
They knew I was here.
I decided it was time to give them a piece of my mind, so I opened the stall doors to see them both wide eyed and gaping at me.
"Some friends you are,"I hissed
Surprisingly, Michelle bounced right back "Yeah, like you have room to talk"
"What the hell is that supposed to mean?"
"It means you haven't talked to me in two years, Emily. You expect me to just go where ever you want me to go? You haven't even gone to college"
I gulped, but I had no answer
"You're throwing your life away," Kelly said "For a guy who was fucking your cousin for four years. Have a little respect"
I scowled, but Kelly walked out the door with ease and elegance. Michelle looked back at me and shook her head.
"Your mother wouldn't be happy," she said. Oh, now she wants to be a "good" friend.
"There is no 'yeah well'," She snapped "Kelly's right. That doesn't bother you? I mean, I don't really know Leah...but how could you do something like this?"
"Shell," I began "You don't understand, it wasn't my choice"
"What the hell is that supposed to mean?" She spat "Everyone has a choice. I don't care what it is. There are no exceptions and nothing changes that. You're a fucking whore who stole your cousins boyfriend. Get a little respect. Don't bother talking to me. Have a nice life"
And with that, she shut the door.
And I cried.