This collar was so itchy, I tug at it in irritation only to find mom glaring at me so I lower my hands quickly.
Why did people have to get married? I was never going to get married, especially if you had to wear stupid suits and look like a complete dork.
Looking over at Sophie I saw she seemed equally uncomfortable. She was wearing a bright yellow dress and looked really pretty, the bright colour made her look like something from a Disney movie, her black hair and blue eyes always made me think of sleeping beauty. Of Course I didn't say any of this because people would go 'aww' and pinch my cheeks.
Slinking over to her I muttered 'this sucks.'
'I know I look like a frigging buttercup, at least your get to wear grey.' She flicked her long dark hair back and then a sly grin comes over her face.
'I think after the ceremony we should have some fun.'
'What kind of fun?' My lips were already turning up in an excited grin. Sophie was a little older than me, nearly twelve, and she was nearly as much fun as uncle Em when it came to practical jokes.
One time we hid in the forest behind my house and pelted anyone who came near us with water balloons. Sophie had found these balloons in her parent's draws; they were all pink and tube shaped with this weird sticky out bit at the end. When we hit dad with one he had looked at it with shock and asked where we had gotten them from. Taking the balloons from us he showed them to mom and they both started laughing.
Adults are weird.
Sophie got in trouble for going through Aunt Alice's things, although she couldn't seem to keep a straight face either, especially when Sophie asked her why she liked water balloons so much.
There was also the time we crept up on dad when he was sleeping and drew a funny moustache and beard on his face. Unfortunately we used permanent marker and mom had to scrub his face for ages before it came off, a faint outline still lingered for a few days afterwards. I was grounded for a week, although Ness had laughed and high fived me when she came to visit.
Yeah for a girl Sophie she was pretty cool.
'What's the plan?' My eagerness made me bounce up and down, Sophie's arm shoot out and she narrows her eyes at me.
'Charlie, you got to calm down or people will know we are up to something.' I nodded my head and folded my arms, my eyes shooting round the room to make sure no one was watching us. Luckily mom is occupied with my sister. I love Ness and she's marrying one of my most favourite people in the world. Seth is a dude; he takes me fishing and tells the funniest jokes. I know I'm a little guy but he always tells me that I should never let it stop me doing what I want.
Dad comes up behind me and ruffles my hair. 'Hey son, you keeping out of mischief?' He lifts his eyebrow and tries to sort out my unruly hair.
'Don't bother dad it always sticks up no matter what I do.'
'Me too kiddo,' he laughs and pats his own messy hair. He turns and looks at mom, he always has this funny look in his eyes when he sees her, it's like just looking at her makes him so happy inside. Although talking about love and stuff makes me want to yak, I feel good in my tummy when I watch them, it makes me smile.
Sophie and I wander outside of the big tent that was put up in the garden yesterday. The sky is real blue today, no rain clouds in sight. I wish I could take off this itchy shirt and just go play.
'I'm never getting married,' I sigh.
'It's what you do when you love someone though.' Sophie is solemn and I turn to look up at her with an expression of disgust.
'Well then I aint going fall in love, plus girls are annoying.' My lip sticks out and she laughingly pushes me in the side.
'You will.' She sounds so sure and she smiles that weird sly smile like she knows something I don't. Aunt Alice does the same thing and she is usually right.
'Won't.' I fold my arms over my chest and glare at her.
'Okay, okay, don't get your undies in a twist.' I hate it when Sophie laughs at me like I'm a little kid, I want to push her but mom would kill me.
'Do you have a plan or not,' I demand, kicking the grass with toe of my shiny black shoe.
'Course I do...' Before she can finish Nana comes over and eyes us carefully. I think she knows we are up to no good and asks us to help her decorate the car.
'Why are we decorating a car?' I never heard of that before and watch bewildered as Nana hands us tin cans ans some silly string.
'It's tradition, a kind of silly thing to do to send off the bride and groom.' Sophie and I have a good time spraying string over Ness's old red truck, Nana helps us attach the cans to the rear bumper and for a few minutes our boredom is forgotten.
'Hey squirt,' Uncle Em's booming voice makes me leap to my feet and rush him. He is another of my most favourite people; he's loud, fun and says things that make mom scowl and Ssh him. Uncle Em and Rose have a little boy called Harvey, he's nearly as naughty as his dad and says 'hot damn' all the time, even though he's only like six.
Harvey comes up behind Uncle Em, it's so funny to see them together and everyone calls Harvey mini me because he is just an uncanny smaller version of his dad.
'Sophie you are looking hot,' Harvey comments and his face dimples in a smile that has women of all ages swooning.
'So creepy.' Sophie rolls her eyes but grins anyway.
'Come on Charlie, it's nearly time.' Mom comes over; she looks stressed, her eyes roaming about everywhere as she talks.
'You look real pretty mom.' Her eyes snap to mine and for a minute she beams and takes my hand in hers. Mom does look nice; her hair looks soft and flowy as it falls down her back. She's wearing a sky blue dress and I secretly think she is the most beautiful mom in the world.
'Thanks darling, you look very handsome too.' I smile up at her and she shakes her head giggling a little. 'So like your daddy,' she comments and we walk over to the place where all the chairs are set up. Most of the guests are already seated and Seth is stood under the arch at the front, he grins when he sees me and I ran over to him.
'How's my best boy, you got the rings?' I nod and pat my top pocket where mom just placed them. 'You have the most important job in the whole wedding Charlie, don't lose them.'
'I won't Seth, I promise.' I stand next to him at the front and watch as he nervously moves from foot to foot.
'Are you worried?' I ask. His face reminds me of the time I wanted to go on a big rollercoaster at the fair, I was excited but also so scared when it got to the top and zoomed down.
'Nah I'm good, I've kind of wanted this my whole life.' Seth's face lights up with a smile as he looks at me.
'You've wanted to marry Ness your whole life?'
'Yeah, nearly. Until I see her I'm just a tiny bit worried she might run off.' I snort and he grins at me. 'Don't laugh at me, one day you'll understand.'
'Everyone says that,' I grumble rolling my eyes.
A hush comes over the garden and my sister appears at the top of the short aisle in the middle of the chairs. Ness looks wonderful; the white dress makes her hair almost look alive. The smile she wears as she looks at Seth is so bright it almost hurts my eyes, and his is the same.
Mom cries during the ceremony, as does Aunt Alice and nana. I hand over the rings when the time comes, I feel important and proud as Ness gives me a thumbs up and grins.
When it's over there's kissing, yuck, and then I have to stand around while people take a million photo's.
Finally I manage to escape, the food is spread out on long tables around the garden and I snag a plate and fill it with my favourite things. Sophie joins me and wordlessly we make our way to the bottom of the garden and sit on a log to enjoy the food.
'So what was your plan?' I mumble around the sausage roll filling my mouth.
'Oh nothing much, just thought we could sneak some wine and see what all the fuss is about.'
'Good idea.' While everyone is distracted eating we make our way over to where the drinks are been served, swiping a bottle of champagne that grandpa has opened and left on the side while he's talking to Seth's mom.
We escape to the bottom of the garden once more and take turns passing the bottle between is. It doesn't taste that nice and the bubbles tickle my nose but after a while I start to feel warm and everything seems funny.
The dancing has started and all of a sudden that's all I want to do, Sophie and I leap about giggling wildly. I can see Ness shaking her head as I try to do some break dancing and fall flat on my face.
'Bro, have you been on the sauce?' Ness is laughing and I don't know what the sauce is but nod my head anyway.
'Mom is going to flip, come on I think its best you stick to coke from now on.' It was fun while it lasted but Ness is right.
In no time at all Ness and Seth are leaving for their honeymoon, sounds like a holiday to me but that's what mom calls it. I feel sleepy as I climb into the tree house dad and I built last year. Sophie is already curled up on the blankets laid on the floor, she smiles at me sleepily and I nestle down next to her.
'Today was fun huh?'
'Yeah it wasn't too awful.' I reply, turning my head to look into her big, blue eyes.
'You know that one day we'll get married right?' I want to deny her words, to laugh but something inside me stops those words. Instead I lean forward and place my lips against hers, it's just a brief kiss but it feels right.
Sophie smiles at me and we both flop back onto the floor, my tummy is squirming and the tips of my ears are burning. I feel her fingers touch mine as we lay there and although we don't look at each other I'm smiling like an idiot.
Soon Alice is calling Sophie and she has to go, this time it is her who kisses me, a small, soft brush of lips and then she is gone.
Maybe girls aren't so bad after all.