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the time of their lives

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The wedding band starts playing At Last as Carrie and Harrison enter the ballroom. He walks in front of her while she struggles with her dress. A couple of bridesmaids help her and she rushes behind her dashing groom.

Their guests gather around them in a big circle and they dance right in the middle. He holds her tight, as close as he possibly can without her dress getting in the way. She rests her head on his chest, her hand resting on his bicep.

“I got another one!” he whispers excitedly in her ear. “You plant the flowers,” he starts. “And I’ll plant the kisses!”

She giggles into his dress shirt, her red lipstick leaving a small stain.

“Tell me again why I married you?” she looks up at his silly grin. He beams.

“’Cause I’m devastantigly handsome?” he tries, in a questioning tone.

“Oh, that’s right!” she laughs, resuming her position against him. “Okay, hotshot, I got another one for ya.”

The song keeps playing as other couples join them in the dance floor. They part just enough so Carrie can gaze straight into his eyes:

“You be the pretty,” she sticks a finger to him, poking his chest. “And I’ll be the funny!”

“Oh, honey, that’s just not true.” He twirls her around, her dress flowing with her. “I’m way funnier than you.”

“You wish, Mr. Ford.” The song changes to a happy, up-beat Christmas tune. Only them to play Christmas music on their wedding.

“I do, Mrs. Ford.” He winks. She melts.

“Well now, that’s not fair,” she rises on her tippy-toes and grabs his face. Her hands bring him down the remaining space between them and their lips touch. They touch just barely. “I’ll name the babies,” the words barely sound outside of their lips. “You can name the dogs.” She chuckles, just momentarily, before locking her lips to his.

Their lips slide on each other and it’s nothing short of extraordinary. Kissing like this, in public, after so many years in hiding, feels so right.

They break free from each other’s embrace and mingle with some of the guests. As the song changes, yet again, Carrie’s attention is averted to the dance floor. She tugs on Harrison’s sleeve:

“Baby, look at that,” she tilts her. He follows her gaze. Two of their closest friends are dancing cheek to cheek.

“We did it, kid,” Harrison looks proud. “We got them back together.” He winks at his wife and she giggles, clearly thrilled.

“Not yet,” she says. “I still got one trick up my sleeve.”

Carrie turns around. She finds two of her bridesmaids and nods her head once. They nod back.

It’s show time.

***

Jennifer sits alone, watching the happy couple dancing for the first time as husband and wife. Suddenly, she looks back. Instinct.

“Hey, girl,” Patrick’s sweet voice lures her out of her reverie.

“Me?” she smiles, just barely.

“I miss you,” he smirks. “You know I do.”

“Well, that’s too bad,” she turns back around in her chair, fixing her gaze in Carrie.

“Come on, Jen,” he places his hand on her back. That’s just enough to get her on edge.

“Alright,” she gets up, holding out her hand. He looks bewildered. “You coming or what?”

“Definitely coming,” he takes her hand and they walk together, silently.

He stands in front of her and her insides quiver. He’s still so handsome.

His big hand travels to her waist, his grip steady. She takes one step forward and lets herself fall into him. They sway tentatively at the rhythm of the song, swiftly catching their pace.

“Very good, darling,” he whispers. “You still remember how to do this.”

She looks up at him through her lashes: “It’s a feeling,” he grins. “A heartbeat. Right?”

“That’s exactly right,” he places her hand on his chest, right above his heart. She feels it, thump thump thump.

Then, she erupts in a fit of giggles.

“What?” he asks.

“I can hardly believe you’re here, that’s all.” She burrows her curly head into his shoulder, inhaling his scent.

“Oh,” he says. He notices two brunettes walking up to the band, whispering something through the music.

Oh, Carrie.

Time of my life begins playing and Jennifer immediately straightens herself. What? she mouths to Patrick. He shrugs: “My lady,” he extends a hand to her.

“Oh no, I can’t.” she shakes her head, mortified. Everybody must be looking at them.

“Why not?” he furrows his brow.

“I can’t remember how to.” She starts backing away, but he catches her just in time.

He spins her around and she follows his lead. They start dancing and it’s still all in her mind, all the steps, all the right notes. She giggles madly once she realizes this is just like riding a bike, she barely has to think it through. She crashes to his chest and he spins her around, beads of sweat forming on his forehead.

“Remember those nights in Catskills, baby?” he whispers once the song slows down a little.

“How could I forget?” she smiles widely, from ear to ear. “I’ll never forget the rain.”

He pulls her back into him: “Wanna do the lift?”

“Nah,” she answers. “Let’s get out of here.”