It was a cold but beautiful day in La Longi.
A mix of watchmen, criminals, sellswords, and local officials were assembled at the church house by the shore.
Several dozen rowboats were making their way to shore.
From a side door, Watchman Wayne entered the sanctuary accompanied by his captain. He was wearing his finest dress uniform and looked confident and self assured.
Inwardly, he was shaking. His mouth was dry and beads of sweat began to appear on his brow.
Music played and everyone stood, looking down the aisle.
She was stunning. Violet, escorted by Barfat Bluntbasher was graceful and commanded attention by her elegant poise and beauty.
The minister began.
“We are gathered here today for the marriage of Wayne Nixon and Violet. Two hearts will beat as one.”
“Before we begin does anyone object to this union?”
No one spoke.
No one dared.
Barfat was intimidating.
Raising his voice, the minister continued.
Who gives this woman to this man for marriage?
Barfat Bluntbasher spoke in a deep voice and looked Wayne dead in the eyes. Barfat had a way of making one uncomfortable. It was said he could throw an anvil with precision if you crossed him.
“I Barfat, am.”
The ceremony continued.
“Today we witness two becoming one flesh.
He looked at Wayne and then at Violet.
This is about commitment. Each of you must give it everything you got for this to be successful. There are good times and bad times coming. You both had better be ready for it.
The minister repeated their vows.
I, Wayne Nixon,take you,…Violet,to be my wife.
I, Violet take you, Wayne Nixon to be my husband.
The minister was stern. ” I am signing my name to this. He looked at Wayne.
“Wayne Nixon, do you take Violet to be your wife? Do you promise to love, honor, cherish and protect her, forsaking all others and holding only unto her?”
“Violet,” do you take Wayne Nixon to be your husband? Do you promise to love, honor, cherish and protect him, forsaking all others and holding only unto him?
“The hammer signifies the strength and trust in the marriage.” He looked at Wayne.
“Do you have a hammer to present?”
Wayne tuned to his captain who handed him the hammer on an embroidered pillow.
Their lines rehearsed, Wayne spoke.
“Violet This hammer is my gift to you, with my promise that I will always love you, cherish you and honor you all the days of my life. And with this hammer, I thee wed.”
Violet accepted the hammer.
This hammer is our sacred trust with my promise that I will always love you, cherish you and honor you all the days of my life. And with this hammer, I thee wed.
The minister proceeded.
“By the power vested in me I now pronounce you Man And Wife!
“Wayne, you may kiss your bride.”
Barfat held the hammer as it was not ceremonial and quite heavy.
Awkwardly, they kissed. They had not done so before. In unison those assembled cheered.
The minister proclaimed,
“I present to you,Wayne and Violet Nixon!”
As they proceeded out of the church, they were surrounded by pirates.
Wayne remembered the rowboats.
One violently took Violet away. Wayne drew his sword.
A menacing man with a crow on his shoulder stepped forward.
” Arggh, ye land lubber, Thought you would set fire to me ships and get away with it did you?”
Wayne lunged. This was not a matter of words.
He was quickly cut short and disarmed.
Gryll raised an eyebrow, an evil grin displayed.
His voice commanded,
” All right, step out of the church and lay your arms at the door.”
They were clearly outnumbered and complied.
” I am a man of business, ye yellow bellied hussies.”
“Why did ye not fight? I have to cut me numbers down to split the booty.”
The pirates shook down the guests taking their weapons and valuables.
Admiral Gryll was suddenly pleasant. “I have here a pile of loot. Is it mine?”
Barfat was surly. “Yes, now unhand the newlyweds.”
“So, if it is mine, I freely give it to the two lovebirds.”
Abruptly, Wayne and Violet were released.
Gryll was grim. “Wayne, your debt was paid by James Rainport, else we wouldn’t be speaking this way.”
Admiral Gryll stared hard at Barfat Bluntbasher.
” How did I do?”
Barfat smiled. “You did all right little brother.”
The captain of the watch was in disbelief. ” this was planned?”
“Absolutely,” Replied Barfat. ” I wanted the wedding to be memorable!”