"You ready?" It is a rhetorical question, though one whose answer is not known, since there is no answer. Actually, there are several answers. All correct. All incorrect. This is simply a situation in which only the future will reveal what should've been said.
Peter winks upon Keith's nervous nod, then laughs when Keith nervously shakes his head. Peter's been married twice already - his third fiancée is sitting somewhere in the pews - and knows the answer doesn't even matter. All can be changed later. Reverted, converted, subverted... what have you. But this is Keith's first time as a groom. And he's about to crap his pants (figuratively, of course).
"Don't sweat it," Peter consoles, though it's already too late. Keith feels like he's swimming, his body an overwhelming source of humidity in a desert so dry. "I freak out every time." There's another wink, though even Peter realizes that his statement will probably just make it worse. After all, Keith believes that his "one, true" is in a dressing room across the church. There shouldn't be another time.
Still, Keith finds it extremely difficult to maintain his cool. Point of fact is that he's already lost it. He worries that some of his reasons for getting married might not be... completely appropriate. It's a secret he holds that is dangerously close to breaking free. So close, there's no point in trying to keep it anymore.
"I'm in love with my Mother-in-Law."
"No, no, it's not like that," Keith stammers, trying to rectify the confusion he caused.
Peter stares at his best friend through squinted eyes. His brow is ruffled. This is just completely unexpected. And, like, totally wrong. "What's it like, then?"
Keith takes a breath. He really doesn't know how to explain it. He's not in love with his Mother-in-Law (or, rather, the woman who will become his Mother-in-Law in about an hour), it's just that...
"I sort of..."
"You fuck her? Please tell me you didn't fuck her."
"Dude! No." It's Keith's turn to be flabbergasted, though he probably should've expected the question. His Mother-in-Law, Susan, isn't unattractive, and were it not for her daughter, none of his friends would've questioned Keith bedding the older woman.
"You let her watch you fuck Catherine?"
That one, no reasonable person would expect. Although, for some reason, the memory of a porn movie watched while in college flashes through Keith's mind. Peter's, too.
"What the Hell is wrong you? Let me finish!"
Peter sits forcibly down on a small chair and almost immediately falls off. He quickly regains his composure, pulls his tuxedo coat straight, then crosses his right leg over his left knee. It is both a mock and quite sincere indication that Peter would love the whole story.
"So, hold on, one sec," Peter's trying very hard not to laugh. "You knew Susan for a year before you met Catherine, and that's what's fucking you up? That's it? Really? Come on, Keith."
"You don't think that's weird at all?"
"What? No, why the fuck would it be?" Peter is honestly beside himself. Of all the stupid things... "You sure you didn't sleep with her?"
Peter smiles; he can't resist. "And you're sure you didn't let her watch you pound her daughter?"
"Oh, Jesus Christ, Pete. We're in a church."
As Keith and, indeed, Catherine were both agnostic, Pete finds himself again being unable to resist. "You'll get used to it."
There's a loud knock on the door. It's time.
Peter finishes the toast. The ceremony went down without a hitch - which resulted in a deep, slow, and relieved exhalation from Peter immediately following the "I dos" - and the reception is proceeding nicely. His speech to Keith (and Catherine) brought uproarious laughter and more than a few tears and sobs. Peter's built for the limelight, no matter how small and subjectively important. He winks at his own fiancée, Amanda, and almost finds himself unable to resist another temptation.
But he holds his tongue. Sure, it would be funny (to independent observers only, of course), but Keith genuinely loves and is genuinely in love with Catherine, so to say anything would be ridiculously rude... and unforgivably disloyal. Peter is Keith's best friend, after all.
And besides, given that Peter's about to embark on his third marriage, he muses for a moment that perhaps Keith did it the right way. Instead of picking the bride and hoping for a great mother-in-law, maybe - next time - he should try it the other way around.
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