She knew it was a bad idea to have the wedding at home in the garden.
It wasn’t just the infernal rain although that was definitely inconvenient, especially now she thought ruefully as one of her heels got stuck in the mud as she ran back to the house. Damn this dress! Not the best thing to be running in, perhaps she’d have been better off with a trouser suit, given the circumstances. She kept on tripping over the blessed thing as she sprinted and stumbled across the lawn, muddying the hem and tearing it beyond repair.
Shit. Was that dog shit she just stepped in? Oh well, that was just perfect; way to top off the day!
Finally she got fed up with stumbling, slid her shoes off one at a time and dropped them as she forwent all attempt at retaining the last shred of her dignity and fairly loped up the garden path, the bottom of her dress by now a completely sodden, mud-caked shabby mess. If she made it to the house, found what she needed and ran back quickly enough, then perhaps Uncle Yevgeniy wouldn’t make too much of a mess; she would have to hurry though. When he had one of his turns, there was no telling the amount of havoc he could cause.
The guests must have been utterly horrified when Uncle Yevgeniy had emerged, staggering up the aisle in his tattered and filthy evening suit to give his favourite niece away, his little Praskoviya. First thing he’d done when he reached the chapel was let out what for him was a mighty bellow – what people heard was an drunken moan – and spread his arms out wide, then made his shambling way towards the bride and groom with all the haste he could muster.
Still, that was the risk when you had your wedding at home. She knew that, she had been told about some of the relatives that might hear of her wedding and that they would want to attend. There again, she thought that they’d feel left out if she’d had the wedding at a church in town, rather than at home. Most of her female relatives had their weddings at home.
In fact, many of them were buried here, in the family grounds. The cemetery was right next to the garden; Praskoviya had enjoyed playing there amongst the headstones and flowers as a child in the summer holidays with her cousins.
This was not so convenient now, she mused, as she dashed into the house to retrieve the ancient knout that was needed to drive Uncle Yevgeniy back into his place of rest.