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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Body Language (11/25/10)

TITLE: The Speech of Silence
By Serafia Cross


I didn't like my best friend's new husband because I didn't know him. I've know Alice for almost twenty years, and she just met Samuel in February—online. It's now December. Sitting here at the main table at the wedding reception on the last day of the year as the maid-of-honor I kept locking eyes with my brother, Alexander, who's the boyfriend to the bride's sister. The best man was going to give a speech any moment, and I hadn't prepared anything because I was asked to 'behave' after threatening Samuel, “Anything you say can and will most likely be used against you in my speech at your wedding.”

Alexander locked eyes with me and dipped his chin to narrow his eyes and shook his head. I pouted with a frown and looked away as I twisted and tightened the satin napkin on my lap under the table.

The best man stood up, tapped his fork against the crystal wine glass and in his Canadian accent thanked everyone for coming and went on with his speech. I sank further into my seat, cast down my gaze and thought back to this whole situation.

Alice and I were best friends for about seventeen years. She kept every secret—mainly because she'll forget that you told her in the first place. She was discrete. She told me that she promised someone that I would behave at the wedding because the person thought I would be really hard on Samuel. She refused to tell me who this individual was; she's smart like that.

I sat at this table, and I wanted to say something. My best friend only gets married once, and as her best friend, I should say something. What I wanted to say was tell Samuel that he never underestimate the gift he has in his new wife and never ever tell her that he knows absolutely everything about her. I wanted to remind him that one of Alice's brothers was in the Marines while another brother was in the police force and two of my brothers-in-law were high ranking officers in the armed forces. If he even thought about petitioning to the Queen of England, I had another brother-in-law in Parliament. If he hurt Alice in any way, we would hunt him down and make his life miserable. But I promised to behave. Lecturing him in public wouldn't be considered behaving, so I bit my lip, kept my head down and twisted the napkin harder.

The groom's best friend went on to praise him. “...I used to tease him about never finding a girl, but he always smiled and said, 'when the right one comes along,' and Alice, you're the right one. You two are perfect for each other.” He went on to speak, but I looked at the bride and groom. They held hands and shared a sparkling smile. Under any other circumstance if Alice saw this kind of public affection, she'd shake her head with eyes lifted heavenward and walk away, but she was in love and glowing.

I looked back to my brother at a table in the center of the room. He furrowed his brows and tilted his head to a side. I noticed how he held hands under the table with Alice's sister. I gave a helpless shrug and looked back down at the napkin on my lap.

I felt so left out. I didn't have a boyfriend, and this was my best friend who was getting married and moving to a different country after this. Who knew when I would see her again? She felt bad when she told me she met someone online and they were serious. “We were supposed to experience this together!” But that didn't happen; life is never how we suppose it is to be.

The best man took his seat as an applause filled the room. He set the mike on the white satin tablecloth. I felt his gaze on me before he lifted his hand off the mike and left it alone. No one reached for it. I stared at it. It felt like the world was staring at me, but neither Alice nor Samuel dared to glance my way.

I parted my lips and took a breath to reach for the mike but never moved my hand.

The napkin fell of my lap when I leaned over to Alice and hugged her tight then shared a smile with Samuel and nodded.

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This article has been read 447 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 12/02/10
I enjoyed the suspense in thus charming tale. I wasn't sure if the MC would be able to keep quiet but I'm glad she did. It's hard to feel like you're losing a friend. Nice job.
The Masked Truelovers12/06/10
A perfect story to apply the saying, "If you can't say anything nice, don't say it at all." She was wise in holding her comments to body language in this case.
Lollie Hofer12/06/10
Great title, perfect for this story. I agree, good body language. I could see it all while reading this story.
Cheryl Harrison12/06/10
Your title goes well with your story. I really felt for your MC. Great way to describe the body language of restraint. Keep writing.
Sarah Elisabeth 12/06/10
This couldn't have a better title! I felt a real connection in this piece ;-) Great writing!