by Andrea Lena DiMaggio
How did it happen that their lips came together? How does it happen that birds sing, that snow melts, that the rose unfolds, that the dawn whitens behind the stark shapes of trees on the quivering summit of the hill? A kiss, and all was said. ~Victor Hugo
"Honey...we have a lifetime together." Vinnie stroked his new bride's hair as he softly kissed her cheek. It had been years since he tasted anyone's tears but his own, and it felt sad and lovely at the same time.
"I'm sorry....please...I am so sorry." She wept. Her face was a mask of grief, never a welcome expression but especially on her wedding night; it felt as if her whole world had buried her and the love she had for her new husband.
"You have nothing to be sorry for, honey.... I love you...oh, hon..." He continued to stroke her hair, and he found himself crying; something he hadn't done in years as well.
"I'm the one who should be sorry. I made such a big deal of this, and I should have known how worried you were." She had been worried, and had told him so on more than one occasion.
"I wanted to be...I should have know...this is....I'm soooo sorrrreeee." She buried her face in his chest, sobbing.
"You're...yoooooo...don't deserve.....so soooohhhrreeeee." She tried to get up, but his strong arms wrapped around her, refusing to let her go.
"No worries, please don't....I love you more than life itself. She collapsed in the safety of his arms, the refuge of his sweat and skin; the harbor of his love and she felt secure; more secure than she had ever been.
"I love you, I am so sorry you don't know that yet, but you will, dear, even as the sun rises in the east, you will find me here and yours for ever! No matter what you have been, you are now my wife and I am your husband. No matter who you've been before this moment, you are now my bride and the love of my life."
He pulled her up and into a kiss. Not just a kiss, but the kiss they would tell their daughters and grandchildren about, he thought. She would remember it for all of her days as the moment her transformation became complete. He would tell his friends of the wonderful blessing his wife would become.
The kiss was only the beginning, but it was the hallmark of the relationship; the seal of approval given by their maker to them to assure that they were truly intended for each other. They began to explore; the moment of disappointment forgotten quickly and a touch and caress and kiss and bite and lick brought them into such a closeness such as they had never known with another human being.
He was tired and she had become tired as well. They fell asleep in each other's arms, the night of their wedding ending not with climax but with sweet repose. A coda for the symphony that their lives had become. Peace covered them like a soft warm blanket and joy held them like a comfortable quilt. Their heads rested in the love they had built like a firm pillow, and they slept as they had never slept before.
"Are you going to call it, or should I?" The doctor shook her head; in her years of practice she had never witnessed such a sad but wonderful scene. The nurse looked at her and nodded.
"6:42am." She choked back a sob as she put her stethescope in her pocket.
"So sweet. I hope I look this peaceful when I go," she said. She smiled through her tears as other staff members crowded in the doorway behind them; a sob here and a sigh softly breaking the silence in the room.
"Vincent Daniel Raggazzo, 6:42am."
"Brian Paul O'Hearn, 6:42am."
"Nancy? Please?" The nurse looked at the doctor.
"Why not? What could it hurt? Bridgette Paula O'Hearn..... Ragazzo, 6:42am, put them both down for natural causes, okay?" She smiled softly and wiped her own tears with her sleeve before kissing the couple and turning off the light.
“For it was not into my ear you whispered, but into my heart. It was not my lips you kissed, but my soul.” She choked back a sob and closed the door for the last time.
"Shakespeare?" The nurse asked.
"Judy Garland." She said softly as she squeezed the nurse's hand.
"Into my heart."
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