Julia pursed her lips as she stared into the mirror. She couldn’t get her earrings to hang right. She couldn’t believe after how much she’d spent on them that they couldn’t even point down properly. She pouted and turned to her maid of honor, Sarah “Oh my God these earrings are going to ruin my whole wedding!” she said. Julia had spent weeks and more money than her credit cards would allow on this, and it had to be perfect! She had even joined a gym and worked hard so she could squeeze into the largest size her dream wedding gown would come in.
Sarah rolled her eyes. “Everything is going to ruin your wedding. First the cake, then you needed to lose fifty pounds, then the bridesmaids not wanting to wear those hideous dresses that were not only blue and turquoise but also had horizontal stripes. Get over it already! Ugh.” Sarah’s voice cracked. Sarah was awkward—tall and skinny.
“I want to be the most beautiful girl at my own wedding; is that so much to fucking ask?” Julia said as she snorted, flaring her wide, flat nose.
“I want to be able to show people those pictures, not hide them in my closet!” Sarah said.
“Then find a man who will spend more than one night with you and get married you dumb slut.”
Julia looked forward to not having to spend as much time with Sarah. She only put up with Sarah because she made her look graceful, and because her first choice had vanished from the face of the Earth.
“You are such a fat cow. I bet he cheats on you within a year.” Sarah stuck out her tongue.
Julia lamented having to replace Haley as her maid of honor, but she stopped answering her phone at the last minute. At least her dress fit Sarah. While she hated Haley for being a too-good perfect girl who also had the audacity to be good looking and have a handsome boyfriend, at least Haley never called her fat.
“God you are such a bitch, I think you just—” she began, cut off by her ringing phone. She answered it while Sarah rolled her eyes like a petulant child. “What?” It was her fiancé. He told her there had been a fight at his bachelor party, and he and his friends had been attacked by a crazed person on the street.
“What the fuck is wrong with you! You know it’s bad luck for us to be together or even talk before the wedding! You’re ruining this for me! You’re ruining our marriage and our relationship and how could you be so fucking stupid?” Julia screamed into the phone. She watched as Sarah giggled. Of course that skinny cow wouldn’t understand real love.
“Well, I thought you might want to know. We need to go to the hospital and—,”he stammered into the phone.
“You are not postponing our wedding after I have worked this hard! You’re not going to ruin this again, I don’t care, you will be there or I will never forgive you!” Julia finished before slamming down the receiver.
“Can you believe that dick? He wanted to postpone the ceremony because his friend got bitten by a crazy woman.”
Sarah only laughed.
The next morning she woke up bloated from all the chocolate she’d eaten to comfort herself. Wedging herself into her dress was an almost insurmountable challenge, but eventually, she crammed herself into the tight gown and waited while her hair, makeup and other grooming was done to perfection. Even her earrings hung right. She waited for her father to arrive with his Cadillac to take them to the scenic lake they’d reserved for the ceremony. She waited. He arrived on time.
“How could you not be early, Dad? You’re going to ruin it all!” she said, annoyed at his lack of consideration.
“Sorry, darling. I know it’s your special day,” he said, his voice quiet and thoughtful. When he glanced at his watch to check the time, she realized his timing had been perfect.
“Oh I’m sorry, Daddy. You know how much I love you, right?”
“Of course I do, sweetie.” He returned to driving, and watched the road in silence.
They came up to the lakeside resort. Tethered balloons floated from the fence posts along the way. Julia wasn’t impressed. She remembered asking for foil balloons, not little kid birthday balloons! They turned the corner, and she screamed. “This place is a mess! It’s all ruined!” The decorations had been ripped down, picnic tables and chairs were overturned and the windows of the lodge were broken. “Oh my God! Daddy, what happened?”
“I don’t know sweetie. Stay in the car; I’m going to make some calls.” He brought the car to idle by the road and took out his phone. Julia sat and stared out the window. A figure moved, and caught her eye. It was John, her fiancé. He was wearing a white tuxedo and stood facing the water. Enraged, she unlocked the door and stepped outside.
“Darling, no!” her father said, his eyes going wide.
“It’s okay Daddy. I see John and I am going to get an explanation for this right now!” She hurried out the door and slammed it shut, jamming her long white dress in the door. “Oh fuck, not my dress!” Tears came to her eyes as she opened the door and pulled the dress out. A long crease marred the dress’ white silk, and mascara melted across the back of her hand when she wiped away her tears. She marched towards the lake. Rage emanated from her pores along. This was all John’s fault!
“John, you dumb fucker! You’ve ruined my special day! How could you let it get like this!”
John turned to face her. He was pale, and blood was smeared all over his face. His handsome white tuxedo was coated in drying blood, already turning brown. “Oh my God, I told you we are not having a stupid theme wedding. And we have to return that tux! What were you thinking?”
There was no reply, only a loud, inhuman roar. He ran towards her, mouth agape. She took a step back, and tripped over her dress. Julia fell onto her back. She rolled from side to side, trying to gain some purchase to right herself. The, she heard the unmistakable sound of ripping fabric.
“You bastard, you made me ruin my dress!” Julia screamed as she threw her hands in front of her face.
He crashed into her, mouth wide and teeth bared. He smelled of blood. Dark chunks of something were stuck between his teeth.
“Daddy help me!” she yelled. Pain overwhelmed her as John sank his filthy teeth into her chest just below her collarbone. She tried to push his head away, but the struggle was futile. He was too strong. She could see the best man running towards them along the beach, like a knight ready to save her.
“Help me Carl!”
Carl looked at her and shrieked as John ripped another mouthful of flesh from her chest. But Carl didn’t stop; he pounced on her like an animal.
“No! Stop!” She wheezed out another breath. The corset wasn’t letting her breathe! She could hear her father’s voice calling to her from somewhere in the distance.
Carl tore a chunk of flesh from her throat. A spray of blood splattered against the sand and her beautiful organza dress. Her arms went weak as John leaned in and tore the flesh from her round cheeks. Tears streamed down her face and mixed with the rivulets of blood that were now flowing from her wounds. She was so dizzy and tired. The mouthfuls of flesh they hewed from her didn’t hurt anymore, but the betrayal did.
Before everything went black, her last thoughts were about how John had ruined her special day.