Put on your hats, it's wedding day!!
Willow awoke to the sound of AC/DC and despite their harsh guitar chords at this early hour of the day, she grinned. Whether or not Blaze had planned it, the song was almost appropriate.
she kept her motor clean,
she was the best damn woman that I had ever seen"
Willow sang as she swung her legs over the side of the bed and stretched. Heading out into the kitchen, Blaze was playing air guitar, her pink hair sticking up at crazy angles. Blaze turned as Willow entered, a huge grin plastered over her face as she continued to sing. Never in all their time as friends had Willow known Blaze to get embarrassed and today it seemed, was no exception.
Willow jogged over to her friend, standing back to back, they greeted the morning with the song.
The earth was quaking
My mind was aching
And we were makin it and you -
Shook me all night long
"Take it Red!" Blaze yelled over the music, gesturing to the small yet sturdy table in the corner of the room. Willow grinned and leapt up onto it, her excitement returning and being welcomed in such a frantic environment.
On the seduction line
She was one of a kind, she's just mine all mine
Wanted no applause
Just another course
Made a meal out of me and come back for more
Had to cool me down
To take another round
Now I'm back in the ring to take another swing"
The redhead pranced and sang, her voice becoming raspy and harsh as she really gave it her all. Leaping down from the table, she returned to Blaze for the chorus, both women shrieking and singing in delight.
The earth was quaking
My mind was aching
And knocked me out and then you
Shook me all night long
You really took me and you
Your really took me and you
Collapsing in giggles on the floor, Willow finally noticed the time. 6.45am. She had been sure it had been later than that, purely because Blaze was up and singing. It was almost unheard of for Blaze to be up before 2pm, unless of course, she was just going to bed.
When she regained control of her breathing, Blaze turned to her friend, who was still grinning. "So, you ready to become an honest woman?" she giggled, playfully poking Willow in the ribs.
Slapping at her hand, Willow laughed, "I was an honest woman the day I got with Tara!" she said, her voice softening at the thought of her beloved. Blaze sat forward, making faux vomiting sounds as she rolled her eyes. "That's gross and cheesy and when did you get so soft!" She teased Willow, her eyes giving away the happiness she was really feeling.
Raising one eyebrow in mock annoyance, Willow replied; "And that's why you don't get to do the traditional best man speech!!" she chastised.
Rising to her feet, Willow left Blaze sitting on the floor shooting her disgruntled glares and occasionally poking her tongue out.
Willow pulled open the fridge, her stomach demanding something to eat. Blaze pushed past her, grabbing a box of left over Chinese from the night before. "I get dibs on this!" she declared, snatching the box from the fridge and tucking in.
"That's disgusting!" Willow told her, reaching in for a carton of orange juice and pouring herself a glass.
Back at Willow and Tara's, things were starting off a little more sedately. Tara had been awake since six, had already gotten up and showered and was sitting down to a bowl of fresh fruit. Vince was snoring loudly from the couch and occasionally complaining about a large pink elephant. Drumming her fingers on the counter, Tara looked around for something to occupy her mind and her hands.
Deciding on the crossword, she got up and headed out to collect the paper and the mail, wandering down the path, she was thankful that the sun had decided to play fair and shine. After collecting the mail, she stopped to scoop up the newspaper. "Morning Tara!" a familiar voice stopped her in her tracks and she turned to the sound.
"Melissa?!" she squealed, running to hug her friend. "What are you doing here so early?" she asked.
Melissa grinned, "Well, I can go if you like?" she said, turning as if to leave. "Oh no, stay, sorry, it's just so early, I didn't think you'd be here until 9." Tara said with a giggle as Melissa turned back to face her.
"Well, I was so excited that I couldn't sleep and Chris kept complaining that I was too fidgety so I got up, and you're the only other person that I knew would be awake at this hour so I figured I'd keep you company."
Tara grinned and hugged the woman before her. "Come on, I was just having breakfast!" she told her as they walked up the path, the deafening snores of Vince hitting their ears before they had even reached the door.
At the hotel, the simple trellis alter was being constructed, before it rows of simple wooden chairs were lined upon either side of a red carpet. Each end chair bore a simple cluster of flowers with a white rose in its centre.
The caterer was inside, organising teams of cooks and waiters, each one being given simple yet clear instructions as to what their duties for the day were.
A huge marquee was being built at the rear of the hotels conservatory, large men yelling at swearing at each other, the only sounds that punctuated the morning light.
Thomas arrived in his refrigerated van, with him the man who had helped to create the masterpiece he brought with him. As they pulled into the car park, Thomas smiled. He was honoured to have been chosen as the man who saved the day and made Willow and Tara the perfect wedding cake. "Come on!" he told his companion, "Let's get this inside." he said, pushing open the door and stepping out into the morning light.
"Oh, I forgot!!" Willow suddenly announced. "I can't believe I forgot!" The redhead sat heavily on one of the kitchen chairs. Blaze looked up from her half eaten box of take away. "Forgot what?" she asked, Willow never forgot anything, in all their years as friends she couldn't think of a single thing that had escaped Willow. "My parents aren't coming." Willow said sadly. Sure, they hadn't been the best parents in the world, but at the end of the day, they were still her only parents and the fact that they weren't coming had hurt her more than she liked to admit. Blaze hung her head as Willow continued. "There's no one to walk me down the aisle." Willow whispered, her voice shaking slightly.
Before Blaze had a chance to respond, Willow leapt to her feet, the trademark grin of an idea spreading over her face. "Give me your phone!" Willow stated quickly, her eyes glistening with tears. Handing her the phone, Blaze fixed her with a quizzical expression as she dialled.
At the Noxon hotel, the telephone rang. "Good morning, Noxon hotel, how may I help you?" a cheerful receptionist answered the call.
"Please could you put me through to Rupert Giles' room. It's an emergency?" Willow replied.
"Yes certainly ma'am, please hold." she was told. The telephone rang for what Willow thought was an eternity, before Xander picked up. "It's too early." He said on answering the phone.
"Xand, hey mate." Willow said.
"Will? Is that you?" Xander sat up in bed, scrubbing at his eyes as they tried to adjust to the brightness of the room. "You ok?" he asked before she had a chance to respond to his first sleep filled questions.
"Yeah Xander, it's me. I'm ok but I really need to speak to Giles. Is he there?" Willow was drumming her fingers on the counter. However much she loved Xander, his ability to think and focus first thing in the morning infuriated her, it always had.
"Giles? Yeah, he's here. Hang on." Almost as if Xander had heard her thoughts, his brain woke up and forced itself to work. Willow heard him put the receiver heavily on the side.
There was a long pause before Giles picked up the receiver. "Good morning Willow." the familiar British tones of the man she had once considered as being a father figure to the entire group filled her ears.
"Morning Giles." Willow said, her throat constricting slightly with nervousness and tears. "Giles, I need to ask you something." she continued.
Worry filled the ex-Watcher as he imagined the various scenarios that had caused Willow to sound so emotionally fraught on what was meant to be the happiest day of her life. "Willow?" his soft accent warmed her and she knew that she had made the right decision.
"My parents aren't coming today." Willow began, her next words cutting of Giles' condolences. "I know we haven't really seen so much of each other or really kept in contact." Willow continued, her voice shaking with emotion. "But back in Sunnydale, you were like a father to me."
Giles smiled, removing her spectacles and polishing them thoughtfully on a handkerchief. "Giles, would you do me the greatest honour of walking me down the aisle today? I know it's really short notice and you don't have to if you don't want but I'd like you to and I think that you are the best person to do it and, oh god, you can say 'no', don't think that you have to just because I asked....."
"Willow!" Giles burst into the Willow babble-age. His eyes filled with tears. Never had he been asked to do anything like this, and the gesture filled him with pride and humility. "Nothing would give me greater pleasure." he told her, tears spilling from both his eyes and hers.
"Oh Giles, thank you, thank you so much." she told him, her voice heavy with happy tears. "Blaze will come and get you." she told him, looking over to her friend who was also crying but pretending not to be. She nodded and disappeared out of the kitchen, presumably to get dressed.
Tara had finally managed to wake Vince up, much to his annoyance. His mood brightened after he had showered and eaten. As he reappeared in the kitchen, Tara and Melissa were finishing the crossword in the paper. "You ready for your big day?" he asked, hugging Tara fondly.
"I dunno," she replied, sharing a knowing smile with Melissa. "Are you ready to get rid of me?" she retorted as he fixed himself a second bowl of cereal.
Vince laughed, "I'm not getting rid of you, I'm gaining another friend for life!" he told her drawing a laugh from Melissa.
"That's not what I meant." Tara told him, getting to her feet to join him at the breakfast bar. "I mean, are you ready to give me away?" her eyes sparkled with emotion. They had talked about who would give Tara away and after Vince had given them a practice speech or two, she had jokingly told him that it wouldn't be him.
"You mean?" he asked, suddenly taken aback. "Seriously?" he coughed. Tara nodded, "I mean I want you to be the one." she told him.
Suddenly, Vince sat, his ass connecting heavily with the hard wood floor. "Bloody hell T!" he exclaimed, tears streaking his cheeks unashamedly. "I would love to!" he told her, looking up to meet her ocean blue eyes. Sitting with her best friend, Tara hugged him fiercely.
"So, we're all set and ready to get married!" Both Willow and Tara uttered at the same time, their respective company grinning through their tears of happiness.