Lindsay Beckett felt the butterflies partying in her stomach while her sister Melanie buttoned up her wedding dress.
“You look beautiful,” Melanie said.
“Yes, Quinn is a lucky man,” said Alexis, her future husband’s cousin.
Staring at herself in the mirror, Lindsay wondered how she had transformed from being a content-to-be-single woman, living in her own cottage in Grand Bend, to being pregnant and soon-to-be-married to London’s most eligible bachelor in just a few months. Everything happened so fast after Lindsay met her ex-boyfriend Quinn during a drug raid six years after he left her and joined the RCMP.
Using a tissue, Lindsay tried not to smudge her professionally applied makeup as tears threatened to fall down her cheeks.
“Are you okay?” Alexis asked.
Lindsay nodded knowing she wanted to marry Quinn. “This baby is just making me emotional. I just need a few minutes on my own.”
When Alexis and Melanie left the room, Lindsay sat on the bed she slept in on the first night she spent at Quinn’s. They weren’t together then; Lindsay only agreed to stay with Quinn because he had more room for her than her sister did. She had to stay in London for physiotherapy and her gunshot wound to her tibia left her relying on others. Now all of her belongings were in Quinn’s bedroom.
Quinn did not take long to charm Lindsay into his bed, and there were some awkward moments due to the cast, but as Lindsay gained her independence, their relationship wavered. On the day Lindsay found out she was pregnant, Quinn was hosting one of his famous barbeques for family and friends. Their relationship was at an all-time low and Lindsay had spent the previous night in the guest room rather than beside Quinn. When she confessed the results of the pregnancy test, she expected him to blame her for being careless, but he hadn’t. Quinn surprised her by proposing in front of all of his guests and presented her with an engagement ring already bought for her.
That was four months ago, and now Lindsay was ready to marry the blonde-haired, blue-eyed man she fell in love with at University, or at least she thought she was.
A knock on the door brought Lindsay back from her memories. She expected Alexis and Melanie to return, but Melanie’s husband Henry stuck his head in the room instead. “Are you ready?”
With one last check on her makeup, Lindsay rose and met Henry at the door. “Thanks for walking me down the aisle.”
“It is my honor, since your parents aren’t with us. Besides, I’ve known you for so many years.” Henry hooked his arm around Lindsay’s and guided her down the stairs and towards the back doors of the house where her attendants waited.
Peering outside, Lindsay saw the back of the guests sitting on the wooden chairs with their white chair covers and red ribbons. Although Quinn promised only forty guests, Lindsay was sure there were at least one hundred waiting to see her walk down the aisle.
Pachobel began to play, and Melanie started walking down the aisle followed by her daughter Stephanie. Her son Nathan continued the march as the ring bearer, holding hands with Alexis’ daughter Sandy who tried to throw her petals down on the grass but ran out halfway down the aisle.
“It’s our turn,” Henry said.
Lindsay looked beyond the crowd to meet the gaze of Quinn whose smile calmed the butterflies and melted her heart. She tried to look past Quinn’s best man and best friend, Bryce Beuermann, the one man who made her doubt her feelings for Quinn. Lindsay knew she loved Quinn, but she had an unexpected attraction to the man standing beside him. Even though she did not know Bryce well, Lindsay could not explain the intense warmth that spread through her body when he was near. And when they touched…Lindsay saw visions of Bryce which left her feeling as though she had just cheated on Quinn.
Forcing her eyes away from the dark-haired man, Lindsay spotted Alexis who stood up with Quinn as well. Alexis’ smile of encouragement kept her walking down the aisle until Lindsay stood in front of her soon-to-be husband.
With a Justice of the Peace officiating the ceremony, the service was short. Lindsay took time to rest her leg as their guests congratulated the new couple before more wedding photos were taken.
Except for Alexis’ father making remarks about the untraditional wedding and Lindsay’s state of motherhood only loud enough for his family to hear, the wedding ran smoothly.
“Just ignore him,” Alexis said to Quinn and Lindsay. “Your parents would all be very happy about finally being in-laws and grandparents. Dad is just an old prude, so opposite of your dad, Quinn.”
Some guests remained overnight at Quinn’s house rather than driving themselves home intoxicated, so the consummation of their marriage was quick and quiet. Quinn and Lindsay left the next day for Lake of Bays, where they enjoyed a week in their luxurious four-bedroom, chalet-style cottage, by themselves. Besides activities common to newly married couples, Lindsay and Quinn spent much of their time in the water, or lying on the beach, staring up at the stars in the sky.
With Quinn driving back to London from the cottage, Lindsay became lost in her thoughts of the perfect life she was about to begin, the life she had secretly dreamed of while living in Grand Bend, but never confessed to anyone. Not only had she married the man of those dreams, but on Monday Lindsay would begin her new job in the Human Resources department with the Montgomery Corporation where Quinn’s cousin Alexis was the CEO. Lindsay was sad to say goodbye to Nancy, her boss since high school, but being the manager of a clothing store did not put her Bachelor of Business Administration degree to full use. Alexis offered her the position as week before the wedding.
“Earth to Lindsay,” Quinn said pulling onto Commissioner’s from Wellington. “I know you’re sad we have to leave the cottage, but we’ll go back up for Thanksgiving. Alexis will be up and you should invite your sister. There is lots of room for the kids.”
“I will do that later, but I was just lost in my thoughts.”
“Well, this is it,” Quinn said pulling into the driveway, “the beginning of our life together…as a family.”
Lindsay smiled; proud she finally found her dream life. She believed nothing could ruin her happiness, until she saw who stood in front of the house.