Romance Fiction posted August 27, 2012 Chapters:  ...32 33 -34- 35 

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The Main Event--The Wedding

A chapter in the book A ROUGH BEGINNING

Chapter Fourteen, Part Two

by c_lucas

This novel is written in the Omniscient point of view. The story takes place is New York's Irish slums. Points of history are intermingled with fiction.

JUNE 1875

End of the last post:

Breanna glanced at Kathleen then to Heather.  “Are yeh ready for th’ big one?”
“St. Brigit and me friend, Mrs. Kennedy, would yeh please restore th’ shamrocks in me wedding train? Thank yeh.”
“Oh no!” Kathleen cried out.
Heather turned the best she could and stared at the wilting shamrocks as they slowly turned brown in death.
Heather looked at the dead plants in her wedding train.  “It not be like Brigit ta play cruel jokes. I be apologizing ta her for me arrogance.”

Breanna, Heather’s mother, shook her head, “There be a lesson in this, but I not be knowing what it is.”
Mrs. Wiley bent over the train’s hooks. “Yeh be having no train on yer dress.”
“No!"  Heather exclaimed, “Leave the train be. If Brigit wants me ta be carrying dead plants, so be it.” She turned to her mother. “Would yeh be telling Fader we be ready?”
Breanna stepped into the vestibule and partly closed the door. Heather could hear her parents talking, but could not make out the words. Then she heard a stranger’s voice and saw a man she did not know when her mother reentered the small room.
“Yeh fader will be here in a moment. He be talking with Tammany’s new leader,” Breanna told Heather.
"Pop, pop, pop," sounded  behind Heather. The three women and Caitlin watched as new growth took form in the train. Caitlin's eyes grew big as she watched the unique occurrence.
Soon the train was covered in rich green clover with small white blossoms.
Mr. Sullivan knocked lightly and opened the door.
Heather caught sight of the stranger as he walked into the sanctuary to sit on the back row.
Someone knocked on the door and opened it. Conor stood with his sister, Doreen, who wore one of the matching green dresses, and his very nervous younger brother, Liam.
“Are the children seated quietly?”  Breanna asked her second oldest daughter.
“Aye. Arthur had ta settle a couple of them down, but everything be fine with them. Belinda has the two youngest near the outside aisle if she be needing ta take them away. There’s a seat for Conor at one end and Liam will be in th’ middle. Arthur is standing up front next ta Phillip. He has Fader’s scowl down perfect.”  Doreen's eyes lit up when she had her first look at Heather. “Yeh be looking like a forest nymph. It’s beautiful.  They exchanged kisses on the cheek.
Breanna cleared her throat. “Doreen, yeh be holding th’ train and then stand by yer sister. Liam, yeh be escorting Mrs. Wiley ta her seat on th’ front row and sitting in the middle of the second row. Make sure everyone behaves. Conor, yeh be escorting me at the head of the wedding party. After I am seated, yeh be sitting on the other end of the second row. I’ll not be having anything disturb Heather’s wedding. Let’s line up in th’ vestibule.”
At the appearance of the wedding party forming up, the organist's fingers softly caressed the keys as she began the Wedding March.
Mrs. Wiley placed Caitlin directly behind Mrs. Sullivan and Conor. “Don’t crowd, or get too far behind, me Pumpkin,” She whispered to her excited daughter. With a nod to Heather, she took Liam’s left arm and walked up front to be the last guest seated.
The organist increased the tempo and Breanna, on Conor’s left arm, started down the aisle. Unlike her mother and Mrs. Wiley, Heather linked her left arm with her father’s right so there would be no one between Phillip and her.
Everyone stood to watch the bride walk by. Heather’s wedding outfit brought about many a comment. The Reverend Mother and the nuns were on Philip’s side of the church. When they caught sight of the healthy train, The Mother Superior smiled and crossed herself. The nuns followed suit.
When reaching the front, Conor seated his mother on the right side of Mrs. Wiley. He bowed to the ladies and stepped back waiting for the procession to end before taking his place on the second row.
Upon reaching Father Murphy, Caitlin knelt on one knee and crossed herself. In her nervousness, she almost dropped her bouquet, bringing about small amounts of friendly laughter.  She recovered, stepped to her place and turned to watch Heather, who had stopped a few feet from the priest.
“And who gives this woman in marriage ta this man?”
“I, her father, gives her ta this man,” Mr. Sullivan led Heather to Phillip, shook his hand and left Heather with him. He walked over and sat down by his wife, who squeezed his knee.
Mrs. Wiley rescued Caitlin and sat her next to Mrs. Sullivan. She sat on the other side and put her arm around her daughter.
The service came to a halt when a quiet conversation started between Heather and her priest. Finally, Father Murphy nodded and stepped back to stand on the low podium. “We be having a slight variation in tonight’s ceremony. Some of yeh be knowing that Phillip Martin, a new believer, has asked ta be baptized before his marriage. Heather, a long-term member, has asked ta be baptized with him ta renew her faith. This young couple chooses ta start their married life in the fold of the Lord.”
At the priest’s beckoning, the two joined him on the podium holding hands and knelt before him. The Sacrament of Baptism became an abbreviated ceremony.  After they received the priest's final blessing, they crossed themselves and stood in their original places, still holding hands.
Heather, trying to calm her excitement, did not follow much of the ceremony until the vows.
“Do yeh, Phillip Martin, take Heather Sullivan as yer lawfully wedded wife, ta have and ta hold, in sickness and in health, in good times and woe, for richer or poorer, keeping yerself solely unto her for as long as yeh both shall live? If so, answer, ‘I do.’”
“I do.”  Philip took the ring from Arthur and slipped it on his new bride’s hand.
“Do yeh, Heather Sullivan, take this man, Phillip Martin, ta be yer lawfully wedded husband ta have and ta hold, in sickness and health, ta love, honor and obey, in good times and woe, for richer and poorer, keeping yerself solely unto him for as long as yeh both shall live? If so, answer ‘I do.’”
“I do.” Heather shivered, crushing Philip's hand. He took the pain stoically.
“In th’ name of Th’ Father, Son and Holy Ghost and with th’ powers invested in me by th’ State of New York, I pronounce yeh, man and wife. Phillip, yeh may kiss yer bride.”
While they kissed, Father Murphy addressed the spectators. “Mr. and Mrs. Sullivan respectfully invite yeh ta th’ community room ta partake of refreshments and ta celebrate their daughter’s wedding. Please form a path so th’ bride and groom can lead yeh.”
Laughing and shouting, the people lined up on both sides of the path, allowing enough room for Heather and Phillip to pass between them. Doreen quickly picked up the train as the young smiling couple started between the two rows which collapsed behind them and followed them, shouting blessing and ribald remarks to the newlyweds.
Father Murphy escorted the Reverend Mother and her nuns out through the kitchen to the community room. The newlyweds, her parents and Caitlin formed a line of greeters.
Several of the men slipped back into line to kiss Heather a second time. Observing the aged-old tradition, Arthur and Conor positioned themselves at the end and would not allow anyone to return.
The partying was still going on when Heather, Doreen and Mrs. Sullivan slipped out and went to the Convent’s reception room so the bride could change into street clothes.
Arthur and Conor harnessed Phillip’s two-seater. “I be wishing we could have tied th’ shoes on back,” Conor said.
“Yeh be wishing ta have yer ears boxed by Fader?” Arthur laughed. “Fader still has a wicked blow.”
“Aye, that he does. Th’ last time I not be hearing for two days.”
“I be remembering many four days of not hearing. Fader is getting old, but I not be wanting ta get on th’ wrong side of him.”
“I still would like ta bring Heather down off her high horse.”
“Fader told us not ta do anything. He didn’t tell Timothy O’Hannigan.”
“What can a policeman do?”
“Let’s saddle our horses and we’ll be off ta find out.”
Heather squeezed as close to Phillip as she was able. “Mrs. Phillip Martin…. Doctors Mr. and Mrs. Phillip Martin. I be liking that better.” She raised herself up and gave her new husband a passionate kiss full of promises.
“And I be liking th’ way yeh kiss, me cailin.” He used his free arm to pull her closer.
Heather nestled into his arm and laid her head on his right chest. “I be worried, yeh’ll not be pleased with me.”
“With Mrs. Kennedy and Brigit heping yeh, I should be th’ one who should be worried. Three against one.” He turned into the small alley and into the barn.
Bedding down the horse didn’t take long. Phillip was about to pick up the two carpet bags when Heather placed her arms around him and raised her head for a kiss.
Phillip forgot about the bags and pulled her close to him. He kissed her slow and easy. “I be loving yeh, Heather, me wife.”
“I be loving yeh, Phillip, me husband.”
Phillip picked up the bags and they walked to the front steps.  He stopped. “Hold these for a moment, please.”  He reached into his pocket and brought out his apartment key. “Now I be ready.” He picked up Heather, bags and all.
“What do yeh think yeh be doing?”
“I couldn’t find out when I am suppose to carry you, so I decided to start here.” He climbed the steps and crossed the porch. “Open the door, please.”
Giggling, Heather opened the front door. Phillip passed through and kicked the door closed. He studied the stairs in front of him, shifted Heather’s weight and started up the stairs.
“Yeh be thinking yeh be carrying me up th’ stairs?” She rested the bags on her lap and put her arms around his neck to better distribute her weight.
“Aye, yeh weigh lighter than a feather.”
Once they reached the top, he shifted her again to hold her with one hand under her as he unlocked the door. They kissed as he carried her across the threshold.
“Wait here, I’ll turn on a lamp.” Phillip misjudged the location of the table with the lamp on it and walked into the wall. “What??” He struck a lucifer and held it high.

Heather took one look, dropped the carpet bags and hurried to embrace Phillip. “Me brothers be walking dead men.”


Image Source, Google Images

Thank you, Nancy (N.K. Wagner) for your assistance with the wedding dress.

To tease Heather, Phillip would imitate her method of speaking.

Special thanks to FS's fellow members:
Tonulak (Ted) for his help and providing answers on Catholicism.

N.K. Wagner (Nancy) for giving me insight on how the Irish spoke in the nineteenth century.

MumEsGirl (Kate) for keeping my dialect on track.

Patrick G Cox (Patrick) for his insight into the early Catholic church in Ireland.

For the Irish FanStory members too numerous to name. For their input on 19th century Ireland.

This is a rewrite. Regular readers may not get any rewards.

Caitlin Anna Wiley will change her name to Joanna 'Jo' Wiley when she is arrested for theft of a two cent apple.

Cailin = Irish for girl.
Divil = Devil
Fader = Father
Help = hep
Me = my
Mammy = mother
Mudder = mother
Ta = to
Tay = tea
Th' = the
Yer = your
Yeh = you

This is a spin-off book concerning Heather Sullivan, a friend and mentor of Caitlin (aka Jo Wiley.) She was to be a minor character, but ended up stealing the limelight and took control of the book.
Pays one point and 2 member cents.

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