Taylor pulled out the chair for Phyllis at the long table adorned with flowers in the hall they were having the reception. Phyllis smiled at him and sat down.
“This was wonderful.” Phyllis smiled to him and kissed him on the cheek. Taylor smiled back and made himself comfortable in his seat. He looked over to his right and could see Ike stand up.
“I would like to make a toast to my brother and his wife…” Ike began and looked down at Taylor and Phyllis and smiled.
“I would like to wish you the best in your life together. You both mean so much to everyone and to each other. Because of Phyllis, I have a new sister. And Taylor of course, being my baby brother, taught me how to be responsible not just for myself but for others. I love you both very much and so does everyone else here.” Ike said. Taylor got up and hugged Ike. Phyllis stood too and grabbed Ike around the neck and kissed him on the cheek.
“Thank you.” Taylor said to his brother. Ike winked.
“Okay, everyone, time for the taking of the garter belt.” Ike announced and started laughing.
“Oh great.” Phyllis laughed as she looked at Taylor. Taylor turned bright red. Phyllis grabbed him by the hand and dragged him to the middle of the dance floor where a chair was set up in the middle. Of course, all the eligible men in the family were making their way up and to the center. Phyllis sat down in the chair and looked up at Taylor.
“I’m so embarressed.” Taylor said, trying to keep a straight face.
“Your embarressed, at least you don’t have to have me reaching up your dress.” Phyllis laughed. Taylor knelt down on his knees.
“By the way, no feeling me up or anything.” Phyllis whispered then started laughing. Taylor laughed back at her. He put his hand on the hem of her dress and lifted it slowly. He stopped, turning around to look at all of his male family members.
“NO PEAKING!” He yelled and started to laugh. A roar of laughter followed his joke. He continued to lift Phyllis’ dress and reached his hand up her right leg. He searched for it with his fingers but came up unsuccessful.
“Where is it?” Taylor whispered to Phyllis.
“Wrong leg sweet heart.” Phyllis laughed. Taylor turned beat red again and quickly searched the other leg.
“Success.” He whispered and looked back up at her. He pulled it off her leg and off her foot. He held it high in the air for everyone to see.
“Behold! The garter belt!” Ike said through the microphone. Taylor stood up and walked over to the crowd of men. He turned his back towards them.
“Ready!” He yelled, turning his face towards his male family members. They all nodded. He heaved and threw it over his head as far as it would go. All heads turned towards the direction it landed. Taylor couldn’t see over the other men’s heads so he stood on his tip toes to see what elligible bachelor had caught his wife’s garter belt.
“Who got it!” He yelled. The crowd parted and a man stood there, not knowing what to do, with the garter belt in hand. He had dark hair, cut short in the back and tapering to the front to give him bangs about to the bottom of his ears. He had golden brown eyes that seemed to glow. He was tan, was about the same height and build as Taylor.
“Kodiak?” Taylor questioned.
“I just walked in the door and this thing was flung at me.” Kodiak said, looking at the garter belt.
“I haven’t seen you in so long.” Taylor said as he walked over to him and hugged him quickly.
“How’s everything going?” he added.
“Oh, you know, pretty good. I’m working over here as an animator.” Kodiak said.
“I thought that you were living in Japan.” Taylor said, leading him away.
“I was but the pay here was better.” Kodiak smiled.
“Uh…who is this?” Phyllis questioned as she got out of the chair and looked up at her husband and this unknown person.
“This is Kodiak, he’s a cousin of ours. We haven’t seen each other in…”
“About 17 years.” Kodiak finished Taylor’s sentence for him.
“Oh, wow.” Phyllis smiled and shook his hand.
“I see you caught the garter belt.” Phyllis laughed noticing the item in his hand.
“I wasn’t expecting to have it thrown at me as I walked in the room.” Kodiak smiled. Ike ran over.
“Hey!” Ike said, giving Kodiak a hug.
“Hey!” Kodiak said, smiling.
“So, where’s your other siblings? I haven’t seen them in such a long time.” Kodiak said, searching around the room.
“Oh, Jessie and Avie are over there.” Taylor said, pointing at his sisters.
“I remember when Jessie was just born.” Kodiak smiled.
“There so pretty, how old are they?” Kodiak added.
“Jess is 17 and Avie just turned 15.” Ike said.
“Didn’t you have two other brothers and another sister?” Kodiak asked.
“Oh yeah, Hey Mack!” Taylor called, looking over at his little brother.
“This is Mack. He’s 12.” Taylor said, introducing Kodiak to his little brother. Kodiak shook his hand.
“He reminds me of someone…” Kodiak began as he looked at Mack closely.
“Oh, and Zoe is over there by mom. She’s 8 years old now.” Ike said, pointing over towards his other sister and mother.
“Who does he remind me of…” Kodiak said, still looking at Mack closely.
“Oh, let me introduce you to Phyllis’ friends.” Taylor said, pushing Kodiak along.
“This is Holly, Nicole, Ike’s wife Candy and Amanda.” Taylor said, introducing the girls to him. Kodiak looked at Amanda immediately and smiled.
“Nice to meet you.” Kodiak said, looking away from her and shaking the girls’ hands.
“Nice to meet you too.” Holly said.
“Yes, very nice to meet you.” Candy smiled as she shook his hand.
“Well, lets get on with this. Time to cut the cake!” Ike announced. Ike grabbed the knife from off the table and handed it to Taylor. Taylor and Phyllis walked over to the cake of three tiers. Taylor smiled at Phyllis and sliced the cake and cut out a piece. He put it on a plate and held it. Phyllis grabbed a small piece of it and held in her hand and looked at Taylor.
“SMASH IT IN HIS FACE!” Holly yelled.
“Hol! Shut up!” Phyllis yelled back. Phyllis put it in Taylor’s mouth gently and he chewed it.
“Hey, this is pretty good.” He smiled. He grabbed a piece and fed Phyllis carefully.
“You two aren’t any fun.” Holly said in a dissappointed tone. Phyllis glanced over at Candy, Nicole and Amanda. Candy and Amanda grabbed Holly by the arms and Phyllis and Taylor came over with the cake in hand.
“NOOOO!” Holly screamed. Phyllis picked up the piece of cake and smashed it in Holly’s face. Everyone started laughing hysterically Kodiak just stood back and watched.
“Okay Phyl, it’s time to throw the bouquet.” Ike said. Phyllis nodded. She kissed Taylor quickly on the lips and walked to the center of the dance floor. She waited patiently for every eligible woman to make their way on the floor. Amanda walked over to Zoe and brought her over to the dance floor and then proceeded to sit back down.
“Where do you think your going Man?” Phyllis asked.
“I’m sitting down over here with Candy.” Amanda said in a shocked tone.
“Your not married, get your butt over there!” Phyllis laughed and pointed for her to join the rest of the single women.
“Phyl…” Amanda started to complain.
“Get over there.” Phyllis smiled.
“But…But…” Candy stood up and started to drag Amanda over to the dance floor.
“NOOO!” Amanda yelled.
“Come on.” Candy said as she finally got her to stand there. Candy walked over to Zoe.
“I’ll pick you up so you can try and catch it.” Candy said, bending down to Zoe.
“Cool!” Zoe smiled. Phyllis turned around, facing her back to the girls.
“EVERYONE READY!” She yelled.
“YES!” Phyllis heaved and threw the bouquet as hard as she could over her head. She quickly turned around to see who had caught it. Amanda was standing there, with the bouquet in her arms and looked pissed off.
“I TOLD YOU I DIDN’T WANT TO DO THIS!” She yelled angrily. Phyllis started to laugh and covered her mouth to try and contain herself.
“Good catch Manda!” Ike said through the microphone.
“SHUT UP IKE!” Amanda said angrily. Amanda began to walk away towards her seat when Phyllis grabbed her by the arm.
“Uh uh, I don’t think so, you know the routine.” Phyllis smiled.
“DAMN IT PHYL!” Amanda said angrily. Ike ran over with a chair and set it down in the middle of the dance floor.
“Okay, the bachelor that caught the garter, can you please come down. You know who you are!” Taylor said as he picked the microphone up off the table. He looked over at Kodiak in the corner of the room. Kodiak smiled uneasily and got up. He headed to the middle of the dance floor to see Amanda sitting down in the chair. He walked over to her and smiled.
“What a coincidence.” He smiled. Amanda just raised her eyebrows at him. He lifted her dress and put the garter belt on her.
“Okay, its over, it wasn’t that bad.” He said, pulling her up so she was standing. Kodiak turned and waved at Taylor and Phyllis.
“Hey Kodiak…” Amanda said as she tapped him on the shoulder.
“Huh…” Kodiak said as he turned around…
Amanda grabbed him by the shoulders and planted one right on him.
“Tradition you know.” She said after she released.
“OOOOOO” Was all that filled the room as Amanda walked away and sat down. Kodiak stood there, dumbfounded as tried to get his footing and walk back to his seat.
Phyllis took her glass of champagne and took a sip. She looked over at Taylor and noticed how happy he was. He turned and smiled at her and put his hand on her knee. A bunch of people got up and started dancing so Phyllis and Taylor had a little bit of time just to talk with each other.
“So, are you happy?” Taylor whispered as he leaned in towards her.
“Extremely.” She smiled as she leaned in and kissed him. Taylor smiled afterwards and looked at her He stopped, turning his head towards the dance floor. The crowd started to part a little and a figure came up to the table with their head down, not showing their face.
“Phyllis?” The figure began. The head rose and Taylor came face to face with them.
“EVE!” He yelled. She had a form fitting black dress on that came to just short of her ankles. Her long black hair was out, past her but and had a few braids with feathers tied to the ends. She looked up at him, her ice blue eyes with thick black eyeliner locked on his.
“Phyllis, congratulations, I think.” She said, and looked at Taylor and glared. Phyllis started to stutter not knowing what to say.
“What are you doing here!” Taylor said, gritting his teeth and clenching his fists.
“I have you know we were invited.”
“Whose this we!” Taylor said angrily as he raised out of his chair.
“Myself and your brother!” Eve said angrily. Taylor walked around the side of the table.
“GET OUT OF MY WEDDING YOU WHORE!” Taylor yelled in her face.
“TAYLOR!” Phyllis yelled. All of a sudden, Taylor fell back, after feeling the intensity of a fist at his face. Zac stood there, rubbing his knuckles and staring angrily at Taylor.
“Don’t you ever call her that again!” Zac yelled angrily.
“YOU!” Taylor yelled. Taylor reached back, clenching his hand into a fist and came forward with such intensity that Zac flew backwards and onto the floor.
“GET OUT!” Taylor screamed. Zac quickly covered his face. He looked back at his hand, noticing blood. He had a huge gash along his left cheek where Taylor’s wedding ring had come in contact with.
“GET OUT AND TAKE THAT BITCH WITH YOU!” Taylor yelled. Eve stood up after she had dropped to the floor to tend to Zac. She walked over to Taylor and hauled off and smacked him across the face. She helped Zac up and immediately left. Taylor attempted to run after her but Ike had grabbed him and held him back.
“YOU’RE NOTHING BUT A WHORE! YOU HEAR ME! A WHORE!” Taylor screamed as he tried to get loose from Ike’s grip. Phyllis stood there in total shock. Everyone watched, silently. Taylor couldn’t take it. He wanted to kill her. He wanted to run after her and grab her and just… He stopped, breathing hard in all his fury and looked over at Phyllis. Phyllis walked over to him slowly, with her head hung low.
“Phyl…” Taylor began to mutter. Phyllis raised her head as she came near to him. Tears were flooding her eyes.
“Phyl…I…” Taylor began. Phyllis bit her lip and looked at him.
* SLAP *
Phyllis walked away fast, with Candy, Holly and Nicole quick on her heels. Ike let Taylor go but grabbed him by the arm fast.
“You really did it this time Taylor.” Ike said in a stern voice. Taylor ignored him and shook his hand loose and ran after Phyllis. He made his way outside and frantically looked all around for her. He spotted her just as she got in her car, with all three girls standing there. She slammed the door shut and gunned it, squeeling out of the church parking lot and out onto the street. Taylor ran to the girls, panting.
“Taylor!” Candy yelled. Taylor let the tears fall from his eyes.
“Where is she going?” Taylor said, desperately wanting to get to her.
“We don’t know.” Holly said, lowering her head.
“I need a ride!” Taylor yelled.
“Ike’s car is over there.” Candy said, pointing to it.
“Give me the keys.” Taylor demanded. Candy searched through her pocketbook and handed him the keys. He ran to the car and got in, squeeling out of the parking lot too.
“I just can’t believe this.” Nicole said in disbelief.
“Neither can I.” Candy said.
Taylor pulled in the driveway only to see Phyllis taking all of her packed luggage for their honeymoon and stuffing it in her car. Taylor jumped out of the car, while it was still running and ran over to her.
“PHYL!” Taylor said, grabbing her around the waist. He sunk to the ground, holding her by the waist and leaned his head on her stomach.
“Please…please.” He pleaded, letting tears fall down his face.
“Taylor, I…I…I have to go.” Phyllis said, trying to pry his hands loose.
“Please, I love you.” He said, desperately reaching for her.
“Taylor! You wrecked it. I just don’t understand what you were thinking. You are so obsessed with this thing. It’s ridiculous. I thought you could get over it but I guess I’m wrong.” Phyllis said, stepping away from him.
“Please don’t leave me.” He said, sobbing.
“Tay…” Phyllis said.
“Bye.” She said as she got in her car. She closed the door and locked it. Taylor got up off his knees and put his hand on the glass.
“PLEASE!” He yelled. Phyllis looked up in his sad eyes then looked back down at her steering wheel. She put the car in reverse and headed out of the driveway and out onto the street. Taylor stood there, watching her as she left. Phyllis pressed on the gas and left. Taylor slumped to the ground and started to sob.
“PHYL!” He screamed.
Phyllis pulled into the apartment complex and looked around. She had to try and remember what apartment was Amanda’s. She stopped, thinking about Taylor and how horrible she felt, seeing him begging her to stay. She got out of the car and locked it. She headed into the main building and looked at the mailboxes to see what number was Amanda’s. She headed in and found the elevator and went up to the third floor.
“Okay…here it is.” She said to herself. She knocked on the door lightly and looked all around. She waited patiently until the door opened. She looked and her jaw dropped. Standing there was a man, just in a towel, soaken wet.
“I…uh…I’m so sorry, I must have the wrong apartment.” Phyllis stammered and turned to leave.
“Phyllis?” He said.
“Huh?” She said bewildered and turned to look at him. She finally recognized him. It was Kodiak.
“Are you looking for Amanda?” He asked.
“She’s just in the shower. Come on in.” He smiled. Phyllis walked in.
“Uh…what are you doing at Amanda’s apartment?” Phyllis asked.
“She didn’t tell you?’ Kodiak asked as he shut the door behind her.
“Tell me what?” Phyllis said, turning around to look at him.
“Amanda and I are together. I live here.” He said.
“She didn’t tell me she had a boyfriend.” Phyllis said in a shocked tone.
“We’ve been together for about a year and a half.” He smiled.
“Oh…do you want some coffee or anything?” He added.
“Uh…no thanks.” Phyllis said.
“Where did you two meet?” Phyllis asked.
“Well, When I was living in Japan, I was an animator for a major cartoon show. Amanda had come as another animator. We met when we were working on this major episode and that was basically it. She left eventually, finding a job in America that was better and we hadn’t seen each other in about 3 months. I decided to get a job in America to be with her.” He said.
“Well, I knew about her going to Japan and everything and the animation job but she never told me she actually met anyone there.” Phyllis said.
“The weirdest part is knowing that I’m related to your husband.” He smiled.
“I don’t know about that.” Phylli said and scowled.
“What happened?” He added.
“Taylor and Zac….”
“Zac?” Kodiak questioned.
“Yeah, Zac, his younger brother…”
“That’s who Mack reminded me of. I didn’t see him at the wedding.” Kodiak interrupted.
“Well, we did. Taylor and Zac got in a fist fight. I left.” Phyllis said and awkwardly looked down at the floor.
“They got in a fist fight?” Kodiak said with wide eyes.
“It’s a long story…” Phyllis started to say until the bathroom door opened and Amanda came walking out.
“Phyl!” Amanda said shocked.
“What are you doing here?” She added.
“I was wondering if I could stay with you for a couple of days.” Phyllis said, looking up at her.
“Why, what happened?” Amanda said, sitting down next to her.
“Taylor and Zac got in a fist fight. Hey! Where were you?” Phyllis questioned.
“I already know. He told me unlike you!” Phyllis said in an angry tone.
“Sorry. I got a call from my boss and Kodiak and I had to leave. I couldn’t find you to tell you I had to leave. I’m so sorry about Taylor and Zac.” Amanda said, putting her arm around Phyllis’ shoulder.
“Nothing to be sorry about. I saw Taylor when I was packing my stuff. He was pleading for me to stay but I just couldn’t.” Phyllis said, looking at the floor.
“I understand. You can stay here if you want.” Amanda smiled.
“I don’t want to burden you guys…” Phyllis began and looked at Kodiak.
“No, no, stay.” Kodiak smiled
“Thank you.” Phyllis smiled.
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