THE ONE – FINALE
“Issa red what?” Lucy glares at me through the mirror. She and Gean are taking the measurements of their dresses. Our designer will only take two days to have these done.
“Red wedding,” I say.
What is wrong with everybody? What is wrong with being different? I dare to be different.
“What do you exactly mean a red wedding?” she asks with a frown.
“Everything is going to be red,” Gean says.
“Hell no…Lufuno. Why would you want a red wedding?” Lucy yells. I smirk at her. My sister is back. We are back.
“I had always dreamt of a red wedding. It is different and unique.”
“I know you are spontaneous, but are you kidding me? A red wedding, are you kidding me?” she yells some more and Gean is smiling. I know what she is thinking – she couldn’t tell me how much of a flop she thought it was.
“What is wrong with red?”
“It is evil. It is unholy. It is ungodly,” Lucy says.
“I like it.”
“Then why would you want to give-away a red wedding? I am even failing to understand,” Lucy says.
“Guys, can’t you wait for the execution?”
“Did Khathu agree to an all red wedding?”
“He wanted all white.”
“Then, rather have an all-white wedding…that is much better. Have an all-white wedding with a red touch,” she says and Gean nods for approval.
I want all RED.
“I agree,” Gean says. “We still have time to re-order everything. You know the team can make things happen in two weeks.”
“Please! Even when you say you are giving away the wedding, someone can be comfortable to take the gift.”
“Fiiiinnneeee,” I say with my eyes closed. “I will have it the way Khathu wanted it because it is a gift to him.”
“Thank God you came back Lucy,” Gean says with her hands on her chest.
Am I that bad? These girls are crazy.
“Please set up the red flower walls and ceilings…and everything else can be white and gold,” Ofcourse!
“Lucy ofcourse…That’s not a bad idea hey?”
“I know who to talk to,” Gean says hapilly.
We can make a few changes but I am keeping the red dress. After the dress measurements with the girls, we go to the wedding venue for food tasting and to settle the invoices for the rooms we are booking for my guests. After all these, we are set for the wedding in two weeks.
As days are ticking closely, I am starting to panic.
What am I really doing? I know I might be a bit stubborn but this is despicable. Dad told me to follow my heart, I love him for that but he did mention how disrespected Khathu’s family will be. I wish it mattered what they think. What matters right now is what Khathu thinks. I care but don’t care much about what the family will say, they don’t like me, either way.
It is now two days to the wedding and I wish I can put a stop to what I am doing. Mostly because Khathu keeps texting me to stop my nonsense. I want to prove to him how much I want to be with him and how I can do a.n.y.t.h.i.n.g to prove it to him. It might be dull for the next person, but this is what is best from me to him. If he doesn’t show up, then I know it is time to move on and he was never THE ONE for me. If he comes through, then it simply means that I am the one for him and he accepts me with my craziness. Too much to ask for, but it has to be done.
I know my family is coming through for me but I ain’t sure about Khathu’s family.
Oh! Dammit Lufuno! What were you thinking? The more I think about this, the more I realise I might have gone overboard with proving myself to him.
I shake off the feeling by walking towards the balcony. I grab a seat and sip my champagne. I cannot wait for Gean to come back with the final feedback of everything else.
“Hey Lufuno,” Gean says while pulling a chair next to me.
“How is everything?”
“Set and ready. We will transport everything to the venue tomorrow evening.”
“What is not coming together?” There should be something, even just one small thing, that is not going to right. That is just how wedding preps are.
“Michelle’s mommy didn’t want me and Grace to do the fit on Michelle. She said Khathu is not saying anything about the wedding so she cannot trust us that easily.”
“It’s okay, I understand.”
I pray that Khathu shows up with Michelle on the day. If he doesn’t, then it will not be perfect.
“I told the photographers to go in early to cover the wedding venue for our portfolio…”
“The girls from work are meeting us at Summit Grill & Bar tonight for a cocktail party…to celebrate you,” Gean says and gives me a wink. “Don’t worry, we booked the whole restaurant so that we can be as crazy and kinky as much as we want.”
“Lingerie bachelorette’s party?”
“Say no more.”
“Babe, don’t you want to try one of these wedding gowns?” I ask from outside the fitting room at Bride & Co in Sunninghill. Tshepo needs a perfect dress for the wedding. Kgosi is sorted as we received his tailor made suit from the bride. She had her assistant deliver it to Tshepo and it fits like a glove. I am also set, I have a thousand of suits I can choose from.
“Is that a way of proposing to me?” she asks while walking out of the room to show off her fourth dress.
“You like this one?” I ask.
We have been here for over an hour. She doesn’t know what she wants.
“No…it looks like I am going to work,” she says while walking back to the fitting room.
“Babe, you look good in all of these dresses.”
“Why do I have a feeling you want to make the groom jealous?” I say and bite my tongue while waiting for the response.
“I don’t need a dress to make him feel jealous,” she yells.
She walks out of the fitting room in a long floral skirt and a perfect crop top.
It is the one! The smile says it all.
“What do you think?” she asks while twirling.
“Let’s pay for it.”
I settle the pay and we grab lunch after the shopping. Tshepo and I are doing quite fine I must say. She seem to be content with me and that gives me more reason to love her. She keeps her happy smile and she is peaceful. It is just a matter of time before I marry her. I have a ring to propose to her once again, when the time is right. When I have dealt with all the demons I need to deal with. When I am a man enough for her. I am ready.
I drop her home in the evening. She hardly sleeps over but we make sure to spend enough time together. I have been the happiest man since the day she told me she is no longer relocating to Cape Town. I had to step up my game and love her accordingly. What more could I do for a woman who chose me over her own plans? I want to do right by her and may God always guide my steps.
Saturday morning, I drive to Tshepo’s house to pick her and Kgosi up for the wedding. I am blown away when I see her walk towards the car with the baby in her arms. She has her hair falling on her shoulders today. Her make-up is just perfect.
I quickly step out of the car, kiss her forehead and buckle the baby. I bought the car seat to avoid plugging and unplugging the one that is in Tshepo’s car.
“Looks like you are the one getting married today?”
“Well…we might as well…you know?”
“Ofcourse, why not?” I say while driving off to Johannesburg.
It only takes us fourty minutes to get there. There are a few cars parked. It looks like it is going to be a cosy wedding.
I pick the baby up and lead the way to the reception area. The wedding is supposed to start in ten minutes but it doesn’t look like it.
“Hi, would you like something to drink?” the waitress asks just when we enter the hall. This place is breath-taking.
“I will have a glass of juice,” Tshepo says while taking one flute with juice.
“Also, If you would like to get married today or any other day this month, please register your name on that book and you might win a wedding from the event’s company that belongs to the bride,” the waitress says.
“Babe, they say we can list our names down to win a wedding,” I say to Tshepo.
“Imagine winning a wedding at your ex’s wedding? I rather not,” she says and rolls her eyes.
“We will pass, thanks sisi,” I say and the waiter leaves.
“Imagine,” she says.
“Imagine us getting married?” I ask while sliding closer to her to kiss her. Her lips were irresistible.
She closes her eyes and kiss me back passionately, until Kgosi complains.
It should be us getting married, today!
I need to wife her and do things to her that I promised I will.
“Let’s get a seat before they give us a room,” she says while leading the way.
“Have you heard anything?” I ask Gean and she shakes her head.
“Nothing yet,” she quietly says.
“Its fine, we still have time, dont we?” I calmly ask. The nerves are killing me but I am trying to stay strong for myself.
This is all my fault.
My parents and everyone tried telling me that this is not the way to do this, but I never listened…so I need to take whatever I am given.
My palms are sweating. I have been ready for an hour now. I am dressed in my perfect red wedding gown, Gean and Lucy are dressed in their cocktail white dresses.
“Did the people eat?” I ask. We have kept them waiting for over an hour now.
“Yes, they had starters.”
My parents walks into the room. Mom looks nervous and Dad is not showing emotions.
“Are you alright?” Mom asks and I nod.
“I am ready for anything,” I say and let out a chuckle. I am nervous.
“Khathu’s uncle refused for us to seat for negotiations. They say he did not send them here,” Dad calmly says.
“He is not coming my baby,” Mom says and my tears threatens to fall.
I don’t even know why I want to cry. A part of me knew this was crazy. I was just being stubborn.
“okay fine…I will go talk to the guests.”
Mom squeeze me into a hug before walking out of the room.
Lucy passes me a tissue to clean my eyes.
This is it!
“Is the other room ready for the people who will win the wedding?”
“Yes, everything is set.”
“Do you have the names? Pick any couple,” I say while cleaning my eyes. Gean picks a piece of paper from the table and writes names down. She passes me the paper and I smile at the names she picked.
Lucy, do you want to walk down the aisle with me?
“Sure,” she says and walks towards me.
“Gean, please get my driver wait for me outside, I will change at home.”
She helps me move outside of the hotel room so that we can walk to the main hall where everyone is seated.
The camera guys start snapping the pictures as I walk down the staircase with my sister helping me with the trail of the dress. I smile at the camera as I head to the venue.
I am proud of my team.
They executed everything in a miraculous way. The walls and the ceiling of the room are covered in red roses. No trace of their original wall colour. Everything else is sparkling white, including the roses on the tables. The plan was to start at reception so that people can eat if we ever run late.
People turn towards me, some ululating as I walk down the aisle with my sister, no groom waiting for me in the front.
“Thank you all for coming today,” I say after clearing my throat. “You might have heard the rumous that you are coming to a wedding with no groom.” I chuckle. “I had to do this. As crazy as it is…I had to get out of my comfort zone and do this to be able to earn my fiance’s trust again. I thought when he sees how dedicated I was to make this day happen; he would stay with me. I was wrong.” I clear my throat and remind myself that Khathu is not here to listen to the useless speech. “I am excited to let you know that all these did not go to waste. I was planning the day for myself but secretly planning it for any other couple amongst us. I have the names of the couple who will be getting married today, in this beautiful place. I have my team ready to change you into something magical so that this day can be special to you.”
I hear giggles around the room. I read the names to myself just to confirm that it is really them.
“Tshepo,” I dart my eyes around to search where Tshepo is sitting with his fiancée, “Tshepo Tau and Vhuthuhawe Masindi.”
Vhuthu screams from the back and the room is filled with applause. She deserves it. Tshepo had paid lobola for her three years ago. This is going to be special for them.
“Congradulation Vhuthu,” I say while hugging her and her fiancé.
Lucy gives me a hug before letting me carry the trail of my gown to the car which is waiting to take me home. She still has to attend our cousin’s wedding and I need to go home and change so that I can be on the first flight to Phuket.
“You are stubborn, huh?” Khathu says and I quickly turn towards him.
“Hi,” I say while letting go of the trail.
“I couldn’t imagine you in a red wedding gown but you look absolutely beautiful.”
“Thank you.” I swallow hard.
“Where to now?”
“Phuket. Just a little vacation before things get back to normal for me.”
“No, you are not going.”
“You are not going to Phuket. You are going to Venda because next weekend my family is coming to pay the dowry.”
“You thought I was going to disrespect your father? Even worse, my mother? And marry you without doing what is right by our families? Where is my daughter to throw those flower things before you walk down the aisle?”
My heart is pumping out of my chest.
He walks closer to me.
“You are stubborn and you are selfish…and you are right, if it is you I choose…then it comes as a package, right?” I shake my head.
“I told you to teach me.”
“Are you willing to learn?” he asks and I nod.
I shove my red wedding idea away, that’s a start.
“You are so beautiful,” he says while pulling me for a hug. He lets go of me and stares into my eyes.