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Love From Afar

by Marilyn Jang 5 months ago in Short Story · updated 5 months ago
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A Short Story

Did you get a feeling that somehow, that doing something outrageous might turn out to be the best thing that could have happened?

Reese Morgan felt that way the day she had advertised for a husband on a dating site.

What she didn’t expect was falling in love with a complete stranger right away when she told herself before placing it, that it was not going to happen. She wasn’t looking for anything romantic. But that seemed to have already backfired on her when she laid eyes on the man, who was about to become her husband.

Life worked in mysterious ways. This is by no means, ordinary or mysterious. Maybe a bit of desperation.

Beckett Andrews flew in on his wedding day. In a very few short hours, he will no longer be the most eligible bachelor on the market. He will be someone’s husband once he reaches his final destination.

As he drove down the interstate towards the small town of Humble, he was getting excited and nervous at the same time. He was going to meet his future wife in a few short hours. According to her letter, he was to meet her at the county courthouse at 1:00 pm sharp. It was a good thing that he arrived early in Houston. He hadn’t travelled much to anywhere except for Australia and within New Zealand. This to him, is a foreign country and he was about to marry an American woman.

As he got closer to the courthouse, he took in the views of the small town and noticed that there were not too many people out and about. Where is everyone? He asked himself. For all he knew, they could be at the courthouse waiting for the wedding to take place.

It didn’t take long for the courthouse to come into view. He quickly went around the turnabout and parked his truck in front of the steps of the courthouse. As he ease himself out of the truck, he made his way up the steps and stood in front of the double doors leading into the place where he will be meeting his future wife.

Reese paced nervously up and down the hallway of the courthouse where her uncle works as a judge.

Judge Adam Morgan was well respected in the community amongst his peers and colleagues. Ever since his brother, Joseph passed away a year ago, he was going to do everything in his power, to look out for Reese and make sure that she got whatever she needed.

What his brother did all those years ago was hard for him to take in. When Joseph told him what had occurred and what he had done, he begged Adam not to say a word. Until the day he died, he would not put such a burden on Reese. So he made a promise to Joseph that he wouldn’t say anything to Reese because he knew it would destroy her. So he didn’t. Until, Reese asked him about the deed to the farm.

Adam told Reese that he knew nothing about the deed to the farm. If he did, he would be breaking his promise to Joseph and he wouldn’t do that to his little brother. No. He was determined to let her fight this because it was her fight after all. It was her farm now and not his. He didn’t have a claim to it. Reese does. But she didn’t want to fight it all alone. She had to come up with a plan and did the only thing she could think of.

That was when Reese told him about placing an ad for a husband on the dating site, “Love Conquers All”. He thought it was a crazy idea. He didn’t think that anyone would have answered, but much to his surprise, someone did. Many of them actually did.

So here he was, waiting to meet the man who would be marrying his precious Reese. The only question he was asking himself is will he even show up? He had better show up and keep his word to Reese.

Adam knew that Reese had meant well. It was just a crazy thing that she was doing. He knew most if not all, of the eligible bachelors left in Humble, but none of them seem to be a match for his niece. So he sees why she had to look for someone outside of this small town of theirs. Maybe Reese will find someone who will have the power and knowledge to help her with the dilemma she is in. He certainly tried but for a small town judge and as a member of Reese’s family, it didn’t sit right with him to do this with her. It was her fight, not his.

He would have jeopardized his reputation for taken on such a huge conglomerate. Or better yet, a conflict of interest, you might say. No, he knew that she needed someone who didn’t know what was going on. This would be something that Reese and her new husband would partake together.

When Reese mentioned to him that the man was supposed to be flying in to meet them at the courthouse, he had to be there to support her. He would always be there for Reese, no matter what. After all, he had made a promise to his brother, Joseph, that he would always look out for his daughter. He was praying that he shows up for Reese’s sake.

Adam knew that it was her life to live and not his. Yet he still felt compelled and responsible for her in some way or another.

“You ok, honey?” Uncle Adam asked.

Feeling a little sick to her stomach, Reese looked up and smiled at her uncle.

Maybe it was just nerves. She concluded. Yeah that is all it was, nerves.

“Just waiting for him to get here is all.” She answered back, smiling nervously. “That is if he shows up at all?

Uncle Adam was hoping he does. Praying he does.

“I am sure he will be here, Reese.” Uncle Adam stressed. “No need to worry so much.”

“But I am worried, Uncle Adam.” Reese stammered. “I just feel like I made a bad decision to marry a complete stranger from who knows where, when I could have married any of the eligible men here, in Humble. What the heck was I thinking?”

“I am sure you thought everything through. Everything is going to be fine.” Uncle Adam reassured her. “And to be quite honest Reese, I didn’t feel that any of the single men here in Humble would have been up to the task. You deserve more. A whole lot more.”

All Uncle Adam could do was to comfort Reese the best way he knew how, but as each minute goes by, he wasn’t so sure anymore.

“But what if he turns out to be some sort of murderer, or serial killer?” Reese chided. “I am not so sure I can do this, Uncle Adam. I am just feeling like this whole thing could turn out to be a huge mistake?”

Reese felt frustrated and threw her arms in the air. She needed to calm down or else she was going to start to hyperventilate.

The only thing, Uncle Adam could do to help Reese was wrap his arms around her. Reassure her that everything was going to be fine.

“Calm down honey. Let’s just wait and see what happens, Reese.” He said while comforting her.

“Who knows?” He said, while pushing her away from him as he continued to hold her arms. “He could very well turn out to be your knight in shining armor.”

“How can you be so sure of that, Uncle Adam?” Reese asked, as she wiped the tears from the corner of her eyes. “Even I am having my doubts.”

“I’m not sure to be quite honest.” Uncle Adam replied back. “But if he truly means what he said in that letter, he will be here.”

“I guess you’re right, but I am still not sure I am doing the right thing.” Reese commented, sniffling back tears.

“Why do I feel like, that I am making the biggest mistake of my life, Uncle Adam?” She questioned. “Why?”

“I can’t answer that for you, Reese.” He answered.

“I know.” She replied, letting out a sigh. “I know.”

“Whether I am right or not,” Uncle Adam said. “I don’t’ think you’re making a big mistake”

“Besides, I think he is the only person that can help you save the family farm.”

“Probably,” Reese said, sadly. “I just didn’t know what else to do.”

“I know, honey.” As he try to reassure her again. “All we can do at this point is hope, ok?”

“Ok.” Reese conceded as she waited with her uncle in the hallway and prayed that the man shows up.

Reese made it clear in her reply to the “Mysterious R” that he was to be at the courthouse by a certain time. Was that too presumptuous on her part or just too confident that he would even show? No matter what, in less than two hours, he will become her husband.

It seemed like everyone in town wanted to see this. Everyone wanted to see if she was able to pull this off. That was why everyone gathered at the courthouse.

Reese didn’t feel it was right having the ceremony in a church where she so wanted it. It was the only logical place to marry a complete stranger, in a courthouse. But having the town here as well, felt, more like a circus, than a wedding.

Once he reached the doors, all he could see through the windows, was the back of a blonde woman. Standing in front of her, was a balding man in his late 60’s.

There was sunshine streaming through the double doors. Uncle Adam noticed movement through the windows and wondered if that was him, the mystery man. From his view, he could tell that he was no serial killer or murderer by any means. He was tall, with dark brown hair that could use a little trimming. He looked more like a man who was on a mission and probably, has just flown in from who knows where, to marry his niece.

He smiled at the man who had just walked through the double doors. Reese turned to see who, Uncle Adam was smiling at and saw him. He’s here, she thought, he’s really here.

Oh God. Why do I feel like a train wreck? She asked herself.

As soon as Beckett and Reese’s eyes met, they both realized that they were entering into something new and unexpected. Did they both make the right decision for themselves and for that matter, each other? The only way to find out for sure was to take it one step at a time and see where this takes them both.

Beckett pushed the doors open and entered the foyer of the courthouse. As soon as he did, the blonde woman turned around and saw him. When their eyes met, something inside him stirred. He knew that she needed him now and all the days to come. She was the most beautiful woman he laid his eyes on in such a long time. Mind you, Ginny was beautiful to, but she was nothing compared to the blonde beauty standing a few feet down the hall, beside the balding man, whom he assumed, is a relative.

Reese couldn’t move. She watched as the most handsome man walk slowly up the hallway to her and Uncle Adam. Their eyes never left each other and before she knew it, he was just standing a few feet in front of them.

“Hi.” Reese choked out, nervously.

“Hi.” Beckett answered back.

Reese knew from his accent, that he was not from here.

“So, how are you?” she asked, hesitantly.

“Had a long flight but I am doing fine.” Beckett answered, with a smile in his voice. “How are you by the way?”

Reese was taken a back for a minute and realized his accent mesmerized her in a way she didn’t know.

“Oh.” She said, giggling and smiling. “I’m a bit nervous but other than that, I am doing fine.”

“Glad to hear that.” Beckett said.

“I’m sorry.” Reese apologized. “This is my uncle, Adam Morgan.”

“Glad to meet you, sir.” Uncle Adam said.

“Glad to meet you to, Mr. Morgan.” Beckett greeted back. “And please call me Beckett. Beckett Andrews.”

“Well Beckett, this is my beautiful niece, Reese Morgan.” Uncle Adam introduced back.

Reese. The name suited her. He thought.

Beckett held out his hand and Reese placed her tiny one in his. Her hand was so soft and small in his large one. Once he clasped her hand, he felt a tingle up his arm and all the way down his spine. Was that normal? He didn’t think it was but he loved the feeling, just the same.

“It is a real pleasure to meet you, Reese.”

“It is my pleasure to meet you too, Beckett.”

Reese couldn’t help but notice the way his hand felt in hers. There was no sign of any hard labor done and from her vantage point, he had nice hands. Nice and big. Reese was no catch by any means. She knew that about herself but the way Beckett was looking at her, he obviously saw something that made her blush. Beckett released her hand feeling the uneasiness he was sensing.

“I’m sorry.” Reese apologized, taken her hand back. “I didn’t mean to stare.”

“No need to apologize.” Beckett said. “And please stare all you want. Looking at you makes me want to get to know you better.”

He was being modest, Reese thought. This was going to be interesting for sure.

Beckett smiled at her bluntness. He knew that she could very well be the one for him, only he wasn’t about to let her know that. He decided to wait and see where this union will take them. He knew that in time, she will be falling in love with him. Was there such a thing, like love at first sight or was that just a cliche? What he does know for sure is that he is seriously falling in love with Reese Morgan, the very first moment he laid eyes on her from afar.

After all of the introductions and hellos were exchanged, both Reese and Beckett went their separate ways to get dressed and get ready for a union of a lifetime. There will be plenty of time for them both to get to know each other more, later. In exactly about half an hour, Reese will be walking down the aisle to Beckett Andrews. A man she advertised for, a few months ago in the local newspaper.

Aunt Millie helped Reese get into her sleeveless wedding gown. Joanne, her older sister by 2 years, did her makeup, her hair and will be standing by her, as her maid of honor. Being the youngest of the two girls, Reese knew that she was the ugly duckling of the two girls but she didn’t let her sister, catch on to that. She grew up wanting to work on the farm alongside her daddy, while Joanne, wanted nothing to do with the family farm at all. She got a great job in Houston after college, working as an executive assistant to a big top lawyer.

After many years working in the same office with Daniel Chambers, they started dating. After six months of dating, Daniel asked Joanne to marry him. After their wedding, Joanne and Daniel are now living the life that she had always wanted in Houston. Standing beside Reese, who in Joanne’s eyes, has grown up to be the beautiful swan she is now. She had always wanted her sister to be happy and if this is something she wanted, what right was it for her to tell her no. She wanted the best for Reese and figured that what her little sister needed most, was her support in whatever decisions she made.

Beckett unpacked his suitcase in the judge’s chambers and grabbed his best suit out of it. It was blue and sleek. He pulled on a white dress shirt and placed a blue tie with thin stripes on. After pulling on his suit jacket, Beckett looked in the mirror and was shocked to see, that he was nervous. He shook that off and quickly made evident that his hair was neat and splashed on his favorite after shave.

When he had landed in Houston, he didn’t have the time make himself presentable. Now that he was here, he went into the bathroom and quickly cleaned himself up. Beckett felt like a new man and was now standing back in front of the mirror. He looked at himself and saw a man who, in less than half an hour, will no longer be a bachelor, but someone’s husband, protector and savior.

Beckett walked out of the judge’s chambers and headed towards the court room where the ceremony was to take place. As soon as he did, he knew now why the town was so empty. Everyone was there to see Reese and himself get married. From the many looks of the townspeople, there was some whispering amongst them as well. Glancing towards the front of the court room, he could see that Uncle Adam or rather Judge Morgan, was standing at the altar.

“So are you ready, son?” Uncle Adam asked. “You ready to marry my niece.”

“As ready as I will ever be, sir.” Beckett answered with a smile.

“Well then,” Judge Morgan started, “Shall we get the two of you married in holy matrimony.”

Beckett nodded and made his way into the courtroom alongside Reese’s Uncle.

Beckett waited at the altar. Daniel, Joanne’s husband, agreed to stand in as his best man since Jason wasn’t there. Beckett really wished that his cousin was here for this special day with him but he left everything behind. Including his cousin. Hopefully he will understand that he had to do what he had to.

The first person to walk through the doors was the maid of honor, Joanne. Once she reached the altar, she took her place right next to Judge Morgan. And then, there she was. Beckett couldn’t help but stare at the beautiful bride standing between those doors.

She looked amazing and he was glad on the inside, that he answered her ad for a husband. What if he hadn’t? Would he be the one standing here now or some other schmuck? Would he be here, according to him, marry the most gorgeous woman in his eyes? He wasn’t sure, but he WAS here, to marry the woman of his dreams.

Life works in mysterious ways and Beckett was definitely interested. He hoped that someday, he would find his match made in heaven, and if by answering a silly ad was going to be the solution, might as well follow your instinct. Why not take that chance? You only have one chance at true love and he hopes that he will find it with Reese.

He found his chance and he definitely found his match in Reese Morgan. Love at first sight may be a cliché to most people but not to him. It was real and he thanked the stars for sending him a thousand miles from Auckland to Houston to be married to this gorgeous beauty.

“Doesn’t she look exquisite?” Judge Morgan commented, nudging Beckett with his elbow.

“Yes sir.” Beckett replied, quietly. “She totally is.”

Reese stepped through the double doors with her cousin, Jordan, who was more than happy to walk her down the aisle or in this case, the middle of the courtroom. Upon seeing Beckett, standing next to Uncle Adam and Daniel, she knew that this was really happening. She was about to be married, to the most handsome man, she has ever laid her eyes on.

Reese didn’t pay any attention to the audience that had gathered in the courtroom to witness the wedding. All her attention was focused on the man, standing so tall and confident at the altar. Everyone stood as the wedding march came over the speakers and Reese, slowly made her way down to Beckett.

She was now standing in front of Beckett and couldn’t help but smile at the most gorgeous man alive.

“Hey.” Reese whispered. Taking Beckett’s extended hand with hers.

“Hey back.” Beckett whispered back. “You ready?”

Reese nodded yes as she looked into Beckett’s blue eyes.

Judge Morgan couldn’t help but smile at his niece and the man facing her.

“Do you Reese? Take this man to be your lawfully wedded husband, to have and to hold in holy matrimony.” He recited.

“I do.” Reese answered.

“Do you Beckett? Take this woman to be your lawfully wedded wife, to have and to hold in holy matrimony.” He recited.

Beckett swallowed the lump in his throat and answered. “I do.”

After they had taken their vows, Reese handed her bouquet to Joanne. Her sister handed Reese the ring and waited for the next phase.

“Repeat after me, Reese.” Judge Adam said. “With this ring, I thee wed.”

Reese smiled at Beckett and placed the ring on his finger as she repeated the phrase. “With this ring, I thee wed.”

Beckett was next and took the ring from Daniel.

“Repeat after me, Beckett.” He said again. “With this ring, I thee wed.”

Beckett did as he was told and placed the ring on Reese’s finger. “With this ring, I thee wed.”

While still holding hands, they both let out a breath and smiled at each other. Reese saw the longing in Beckett’s eyes on how much he wants to kiss her and vice versa.

“With the exchange of the vows and placing of the rings on each other’s hand,” Judge Morgan stated. “I hear by pronounce you, husband and wife.” Judge Morgan announced. “You may kiss your bride.”

After getting the permission he needed from Judge Morgan, Beckett replied. “It would be my pleasure.”

With that, he planted a tender kiss on Reese’s soft lips. The spectators in the courtroom broke out in applause as the happy couple kissed each other for the first time. Beckett hope to kiss her more after this but he knew in his heart, not to rush her or it would be a disaster.

Beckett didn’t want to stop kissing Reese, but it would have been better if they were alone so he can really show her how he feels about her. There was a time and a place for it, but this wasn’t it. Once that he and Reese, came up for air, they both turned and made their way down the middle of the courtroom and down the foyer to the double doors.

There was no turning back now for the both of them. They were about to start a new life as husband and wife.

Just before the ceremony got started, Becket asked Reese’s uncle if it was ok with him, that he take Reese’s bags to the truck. Uncle Adam smiled and nodded his head.

Beckett made sure that his bags and Reese’s were placed in the back of the truck before heading back into the courthouse for the ceremony. He just wanted to get out there as soon as he can and take Reese away to some place special. He wanted to start a life with Reese as soon as possible.

A journey was beginning and they both knew that this was going to take some effort in keeping and staying married for a year. They both knew that it may come with some bumps and bruises along the way. As long as they are both together, the world is going to see what Beckett and Reese will bring with them along the way.

Short Story

About the author

Marilyn Jang

I am an aspiring writer working on my very first book. It is based on the short story that I have submitted and will hope to become a series of books.

I was born in Lethbridge, Alberta. I currently am living in Mississauga, Ontario.

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