Friday, October 31, 2008

To: God
Re: Love, Marriage and Sex

There are enough other people Gabriel could get off on, it doesn’t have to be me and Jack…

I feel so sorry for Damien right now. I know he’s brought all this on himself, but the poor guy is absolutely shattered from Michelle and Chelsea, without Kirsty as well. I talk to Damien most days on the phone, but the conversation never lasts long. If I can’t hear Chelesa crying in the background he’s practically falling asleep on the phone. He says he can’t wait for half term to be over so he can go back to college – he needs an excuse to be away from Michelle.

He’s barely seen Kirsty since Chelsea was born. I can’t see them lasting much longer. I wonder what excuse he’s given her. It would have to be a good one for him to only see her twice in over three weeks. There’s no way she can’t be suspicious of something. Damien can’t see that though, he’s too tired to notice that though.

Damien’s family aren’t helping him either. Michelle’s been staying at Damien’s house, and Chelsea’s been sleeping all day and crying all night. His parents are on the verge of kicking him out if he doesn’t do something about it, but Chelsea’s a three week old baby, there’s not a lot you CAN do about it.

I’m not at all surprised that she’s being bottle fed. That way, Michelle doesn’t have to get out of bed in the middle of the night, because she can make Damien do it all. From what I’ve heard Michelle won’t lift a finger for Chelsea while Damien’s there to do it for her.

I had to laugh in a sad way when Damien told me that Michelle didn’t say anything about their wedding for a whole week after Chelsea was born.

Of course, Michelle is never going to let Damien hear the end of it that he missed the birth, he’s had quite a lot of stick from her for that. I don’t know what he told her he was doing then – I can’t imagine he told her he was going to kill himself after spending the night with his ex-girlfriend. I’m sure he came up with some totally unbelievable lie for her.

I wish he’d do something about his situation, it’s painful to see him like he is. He cried to me on the phone last night. I think more than Michelle and Chelsea and Kirsty, the sleep deprivation is getting to him the most. Chelsea cries all night, and Michelle won’t get out of bed to see to her. If it wasn’t so unfair on Chelsea, I’d say for him to leave her crying long enough for Michelle to do it, but as well as that, the longer Chelsea cries for the closer his parents are brought to throwing him out, and the last thing I want to see is him having to move into Michelle’s house. She doesn’t need to have any more power over him. He’ll never stand up to her if she could put him on the streets.

I think it’s sad for Chelsea that Damien never says her name to me, it’s always ‘the baby’.

It’s getting so bad now it’s getting to the point where I want to say to Michelle all the things Damien won’t. I don’t know what he thinks he has left to lose. What’s the worst she can do? Leave him? Take Chelsea away? I’ll have to remember to tell him that the next time he phones, actually. I wish I knew what I could do to make him sort himself out.

If someone does kill themselves and their soul decides to come back and do that life again, they can’t come back as the same person, the world just doesn’t work that way. It might be their soul, and that might be a big part of makes people who they are, but so is your upbringing and the people around you. Let’s say Damien did kill himself and his soul came back, it still couldn’t be Damien as he is now. Somehow, I think his soul is the last thing on his mind right now though.

Well, when people change their names, it’s usually because they’ve changed as an individual. I suppose if we had wanted to, me and Jack could have both taken a new surname, but that just doesn’t feel right. Us getting married wasn’t about us becoming something new, it was about us coming together, so it was only right that I should become Poppy Honeywell to show the world that me are Jack are one - I’m his wife and he’s my husband (I still haven’t gotten over the thrill of being able to say that). I suppose it could have worked the other way, he could have become Jack Lancaster, but it’s tradition that the wife takes the husband’s name, and at the time I was only too happy to lose my dad’s surname, so I wouldn’t have wanted that, or even to have a double barrelled surname and become Poppy Lancaster-Honeywell. The only other name I would have possibly wanted would have been my mum’s maiden name, so then I would have been Poppy Honeywell-Adams, but it would make no sense for Jack to have that name, so much better that I just become Poppy Honeywell.

I do love my new surname. It’s so nice to say and write, and it’s symbolic of the fact that I’ll always belong to Jack. The only way I’m ever losing Jack’s name is to marry someone else, as if I can see that ever happening after Jack.

With Chelsea’s parents, I think getting teased because of her name is going to be the least of her worries. She’s going to have to grow up so quick.

You might think it’s a nice gesture that he’s given Chelsea my name, but I don’t want to be around when Michelle finds out Poppy is the name of his ex who he still loves a lot more than he loves her. I hope he has a good hiding place somewhere…

Okay, wedding. I hope you all like reading…

I’m still undecided on whether the hen night was good or not. I did really enjoy myself while I was there, but I look back on it now and cringe at some of the things that went on.

Well, I suppose I had better do this from the beginning. I remember looking at the time on my computer as the doorbell rang, it was 7:58. I wasn’t expecting Gabriel and Michael to turn up until 8, so I was caught off guard at first. I really could have done with just those two minutes to prepare myself mentally before Gabriel turned my life into complete and utter madness. I wasn’t in a rush to answer the door the door, but Gabriel apparently was, she pressed the doorbell seven times. I could see Gabriel and Michael through the frosted glass on the door as I came down the stairs. I took a deep breath before I opened the door. Here we go…

You really couldn’t help the fact that the first thing I noticed was Gabriel’s clothes (or lack thereof). I’d come up with so many rules about what she was and was not allowed to wear to the wedding, I couldn’t believe I hadn’t considered the hen night. She was wearing thigh-high black PVC boots with four inch heels, what I suppose by definition would be called a skirt, although it was more like a band of fabric that went around her. I own belts that cover me more than that skirt was covering her. It must have been six inches long at the most, and did hardly anything to cover what was her excuse for underwear. Her boobs, which would have put Jordan to shame, were ‘sort of’ being held in by a black PVC bra (which matched her boots), and that was it. No top or anything to speak of. Her face was, as usual, enough to give every girl in the area instant low self esteem. She was absolutely gorgeous. She had such dark eyes and dark lips, and her hair went all the way down to her waist.

It was a different story with Michael. I didn’t take notice of what he was wearing at all at first, just that (same as last time I saw him) he had the most beautiful blue eyes. They’re so deep, you can’t help but want to look into them. The only thing strong enough to make you want to stop, as he demonstrated, was one of his hugs. Michael gives the best hugs in the world, even better than Jack, and that’s saying something. He’s so big and warm and makes you feel so much better for it, like all your problems could be solved with a hug. If only they could.

Once me and Michael were done hugging (it almost feels disappointing when he lets you go), I finally did something that I’ve wanted to do for months now. I turned to Gabriel, looked her in the eyes, said ‘THIS is for watching me in the shower’, gathered every ounce of strength I had and gave her a dead arm. It was brilliant. I have so many memories from the hen night and the wedding and the honeymoon, but that’s got to be one of the top contenders for favourite. The look on Gabriel’s face was fantastic, like she had never seen it coming. She almost fell off her heels too, which was a nice little added bonus. I got such an adrenaline rush out of it.

Michael’s face was a picture too. I’d expect most guys to do something if someone gave their girlfriend a dead arm, but Michael just stood their smiling, no, laughing, even.

There was a brilliant silence after I hit Gabriel, maybe five seconds, the just one word from her: ‘Ow’. I felt even more smug after that, the smile on my face grew even wider.

I decided I didn’t want to be kept in suspense any more, so I just asked Gabriel then. ‘Go on, where are you taking me?’ Gabriel looked me up and down then said ‘You’re not going anywhere dressed like THAT’. Oh, the irony. The amount of mothers who would do anything to have their daughters go out dressed like I was. I gave Gabriel a look that more or less said ‘Oh well, guess I’m not going then’. She came up close to me then and put her arm around me (she had a brilliant red mark where I’d hit her) and said (a bit more matter of factly than I would have liked) ‘You’ve got a beautiful body. I know, I’ve seen it enough. Why do you want to hide it?’ She didn’t give me chance to answer before she added ‘You really ought to wear makeup when you’re going out, too.’ ‘I am!’ ‘Oh really? I can’t tell.’ Yeah, thanks Gabriel…

She took hold of my hand and dragged me back inside the house and up the stairs after deciding she was going to, and I quote, ‘help’ me pick out something to wear and ‘help’ me with my makeup. Michael followed us up and sat on my bed with me while I prepared for the worst.

Gabriel’s face was one of genuine horror and disappointment as she opened my wardrobe doors wide and said ‘Oh good lord’ ‘What?’ ‘Which Muslim charity shop did you get all of this from?’ Thanks again. An unpleasant image ran through my mind of what kind of things Gabriel’s wardrobe contained.

Gabriel started going through my wardrobe and chucking all over the room all the things she didn’t like i.e. everything. Each item she looked at for barely a second before deciding she didn’t like it and throwing it somewhere. There were a few tops there I remember thinking ‘she has to like that one, surely’, some of the strappy ones I wear in the summer, but no. She kept throwing more and more onto the bed, making comments like ‘What were you thinking when you bought this?’ I laughed when she got to the end: ‘The top of this dress isn’t entirely bad but I hate the colour and the bottom is ridiculous’ ‘Gabriel, that’s my wedding dress…’ At least she didn’t throw that one on the floor like she had with the rest.

Once she’d gone through everything on the coathangers, she started on the drawers. ‘Is denim going cheap somewhere?’ ‘Please tell me you didn’t pay money for this’ and on and on and on.

I could have just died when she started on my underwear drawer. She picked up one of my bras and looked at the label. ‘34C, I thought so. You’re so small! Well, you certainly won’t be needing any of these’ and all my bras went onto the floor with everything else.

Next, it was shoes. ‘Do you actually own any shoes that have heels?’ No, I don’t. I hate heels, so naturally all my shoes and boots went onto the floor too.

She wanted to unpack my suitcase for the honeymoon too and look in there, but there was no way I was going to let her, not after I’d spent half the day folding and packing it all.

So, now my room looked like a clothes bomb had exploded in my room, clothes were everywhere, you couldn’t even see the carpet. Then she had the nerve to say ‘Hmm, it probably would have been better if I’d just brought out the ones I liked.’ I was trying to figure out what to say, whether it should be ‘REALLY?!?’ or ‘There was something in there you LIKED?!?’ I was feeling victorious at this point though, since I’d either have to go out in what I was wearing or not go out at all. I wish.

‘I thought this might happen, so I came prepared’. Ugh, please, no. Michael went out and came back less than a minute later with a pink paper bag, handed it to Gabriel who then handed it to me. The contents weren’t actually THAT bad. There was a black skirt, and although I never wear skirts, it was bearable, since it almost came down to my knees (which made it over four times longer than Gabriel’s skirt), a white sleeveless blouse which could have been worse, although it did look quite small and slightly see through, then a pair of knee-high leather boots with two and a half inch heels. Again, could have been worse, but I had difficulty walking in my wedding shoes at first, and they’re not even an inch, so two and a half inches were never gonna happen.

I gave Gabriel a look and said ‘Where’s the rest of it?’ Gabriel gave me a look back and said ‘What do you mean? I just want you to try it on so I can see how much we still need to cut it.’ ‘WHAT?!?’ ‘Just kidding! I decided to aim low because I knew you would never agree to what I really wanted you to wear.’ I didn’t want to think about what she really wanted me to wear if this was her idea of aiming low.

I agreed to try it on, just to shut her up. Michael left the room to let me get changed, but Gabriel stood there expecting me to get changed there in front of her! Michael managed to get her out for long enough for me to get changed though, although his method was a bit questionable. He took hold of Gabriel’s hand and shoved it down his trousers, then Gabriel was more than happy to follow him out with her hand still down there. Thankfully, I couldn’t hear them through the closed door, but I could imagine what Gabriel was doing to him.

Now, apart from the heels on the boots, I didn’t actually have too much of a problem with the clothes, it was the way Gabriel wanted me to wear them. The skirt was a bit short, but bearable. At least it wasn’t short enough to be called a miniskirt. The blouse was a bit tight too, and sleeveless, but at least it kept me mostly covered, and I own a few sleeveless tops myself, so I couldn’t really complain on that front. The problems came when I showed Gabriel. I was wearing my skirt around my waist, but it was apparently supposed to go around my hips, the blouse was supposed to be worn with the top four buttons undone (and there were only seven buttons in total), and, heavens above, I was wearing a bra underneath! I wasn’t wearing the boots because it was all I could do to stand up in them, let alone walk. The blouse was pretty see through too, so there was no way I was going to not wear something underneath.

It took a good half an hour to come to a compromise, although looking back, Gabriel won with that a lot more than I did. I managed to keep the skirt around my waist, only because Gabriel realised that if I was wearing my skirt higher, more of my legs were showing. The blouse wasn’t much of a compromise, I still had to have the top four buttons undone, although I was allowed to wear a bra underneath of Gabriel’s choosing, a deep red one with black lace around the edge and knickers to match. With four buttons undone, the bra wasn’t covered by the blouse at all. Gabriel cut the buttons off too so I couldn’t do them up later. I told her it was the middle of October and cold outside, but Gabriel told me that was a good thing, since the cold would make my nipples stand out more. Ugh. As for the boots, Gabriel couldn’t believe that I hadn’t been taught to walk in heels at school. I told her I’d never worn proper heels before and two and a half inches was far too high, but she told me if she could walk in ten inch heels, I could walk in two and a half. Ten inches! I can’t even imagine what ten inch heels look like, let alone how to walk in them. In the end, she gave me a crash course (very fitting name) in walking in heels, and I wasn’t too bad at it by the end.

Next, makeup. Gabriel was shocked to find that I didn’t own any lipstick, but she had come unbelievably prepared. She was putting eyeliner and mascara on me like it was going out of fashion. I hardly recognised myself when I looked in the mirror, although I’ve got to say, not in a completely bad way. I still wasn’t sure whether I wanted to leave the house looking like that, but Michael hugged me and told me I looked beautiful, then I didn’t feel quite so embarrassed to go out.

So, now we’re just about ready to go. I really don’t know how I managed to not notice the bright red Ferrari parked opposite when I first answered the door to Gabriel and Michael. I asked Gabriel how she’d got a Ferrari, and immediately wished I didn’t. I would have almost rather she had said she had stolen it than the two words she gave me: ‘Prostitution pays.’

It really was an awesome car though, although I would have been more comfortable if Gabriel hadn’t said as me and Michael climbed in the back ‘You wouldn’t believe some of the things that back seat has seen’, then spent the first ten minutes of the journey explaining her experiences on just how many guys will instantly come home with you if you have Ferrari parked outside. It didn’t surprise me, actually. I’m sure that would work on 95% of the guys I see when I’m out. I know for a fact it would work on Damien.

The journey there was eventful to say the least. As we were headed out of town there was a group of guys in a car beside us, all probably about 20, and every time we stopped at a junction or a red light, Gabriel would flash them or do something otherwise obscene. At one set of traffic lights, she even got out and got into the other car. I’m so glad there was nobody behind us, because the lights changed to green twice before she came back. I don’t want to know what she got up to in that car, I didn’t watch.

Then, going down the dual carriageway at 150 miles an hour. I asked Gabriel how fast we were going and she told me 15. I knew we were going well over 15, then she said ‘Oh, I mean 150! Give me a break, I’m stuck behind some slow person!’ How we managed to get there in one piece without being arrested, I’ll never know.

After about 15 minutes on the dual carriageway, we arrived at our destination, although I still don’t really know where it was because Michael blindfolded me about 5 minutes before we got there and didn’t take it off until we were there and inside.

Gabriel could have gotten a room anywhere to hold my hen night. It could have been a pub, a nightclub, the town hall even, but no, although I suppose I shouldn’t have expected anything less than a pole dancing club from Gabriel, although thankfully there weren’t any actual pole dancers there at the time. I didn’t realise it was a pole dancing club at first, because I was just astounded by the number of people Gabriel had managed to gather together for my hen night. 20 in all, all angels. They all cheered as Gabriel took the blindfold off me, although I could have done without her taking a photo of me then to immortalise my reaction.

Gabriel took me around and introduced me to everyone. At first it was okay, but every angel she introduced me to was weirder than the last, until by the end it almost made Gabriel look normal. Right, let me think back to who was there and what order they came in…

First was Uriel, the angel of emotional attachments, who was so unbelievably nice (well, most of the time, although I’ll talk about what she got up to at the wedding when I get that far).

After Uriel came Gazardiel, the angel of marriage. I could live with having someone like him at my hen night. He’d had enough past experience of hen nights, this being the 512th one he’d been to, although it was apparently an honour to come to mine.

Next was, let me think…Muriel, the angel of emotions. She makes me look like the most emotionally stable girl in the world. One minute she’d be laughing uncontrollably and the next she’d be crying her eyes out.

Next, Iahel, the angel of interruption. She drove me mad. You can’t even open your mouth to speak without her butting in. Trying to hold a conversation with anyone while Iahel’s around is impossible.

Sat next to Iahel was Charoum, the angel of expression. As soon as I got to him he grabbed me in a hug and told me how awesome I was and that he was my number one fan. Okay…

Not difficult to remember, next was Shekinah, the angel of jealousy. She was really angry and jealous that Charoum got to hug me, but when I told her she could hug me if she wanted to, she decided she didn’t want to any more.

Next, Munkir and Nakir, the identical twins. I never did figure out why they made themselves look identical if they were so obsessed with not being the same and being treated as individuals.

Pashcar, the angel of blindness. Pash didn’t do much other than sit around with other people talking all night – it’s hard to get up and party when you can’t see anything. I remember thinking that I didn’t have much to worry about from her, at least she couldn’t watch me in the shower, but no, she apparently listens to me all day. Not freaky at all…

Sandalphon, the angel of feebleness. Sandy was so small and meek and…feeble. He made everyone else in the room feel hideously overdressed, not that I was entirely comfortable with what I was wearing to begin with.

This is where they started getting really weird. Ramiel, the angel of light showers, which explained why it had been raining as we’d come in. She was absolutely fascinated by rain.

The next one, I never did manage to remember his name, but neither could anyone else. Everyone was getting it wrong, and he practically had a heart attack every time it happened. I think it was something like Milk, no Melk…Mechesedec?…oh, I give up. It was something like that. To begin with, I learnt to just not refer to him by name, but once I started drinking I ended up calling him Melanie all night. Being the angel of precision, that wasn’t the only thing he was getting wound up over either.

Zuphlas, the angel of concrete. He spent most of the night sat on the floor saying what an abomination it was that the glorious concrete had been covered in lino.

Xaphan, the angel of eccentricity. He was weird to say the least, although not in a bad way like some of the other angels. He spent a lot of the night coming up with really weird ideas for things to do.

Cathetel, the angel of genetic engineering, who had obviously done a fair bit on herself too. Amongst other things, her eyes were bright blue, I thought she was wearing contacts at first.

Next, Lailah, the angel of conception. When Gabriel introduced me to her and told me what she was the angel of, she just said 'Well, let's just say it's a good thing you're on the pill otherwise you could well be pregnant from standing there'. Lailah promised me she had it under control though.

Next was Rehael, the angel of rebellion, who all night wanted to do something different to what everyone else was doing, and if anyone else joined in, he’d want to do something else.

You had to laugh as Gabriel introduced me to the next one. ‘This is Regina, the angel of transvestitism’, as if I couldn’t tell just be looking at him what he was the angel of. He was good fun. Camper than a row of tents.

Finally, the two angels who left me feeling mentally scarred to just think about them. They both looked like Gabriel’s birthday presents. Hamael, the angel of exposure. She made Gabriel look like she was dressed up for winter. She wasn’t really wearing clothes – “string” would be a more accurate description, which was being held in place by a few small strips of duct tape which had been given to her by Nisroc, the angel of bondage, who was wearing leather trousers and leather straps across his chest and metal bands around his wrists and neck. He was fiddling with two pairs of handcuffs at the time. That wasn’t going to be the last I saw of them either. I knew from the second I saw Hamael and Nisroc I knew they were bad news, and I was absolutely right. Hamael had made a bet with Gabriel that she’d never be able to get me there, a bet which Hamael had lost, so she had to lap dance for Gabriel.

I forced Michael to come with me to get a drink the second Gabriel sat down and Hamael jumped on top of her. There was no way I wanted to hang around and watch. Gabriel was enjoying herself so much that she didn’t notice we were gone until afterwards. I deliberately sat with my back to them because I didn’t even want to be able to see them out of the corner of my eye. The cheering and hooting from everyone was bad enough as it was.

Michael, on the other hand, deliberately placed himself so he COULD see them. It wasn’t that he was being perverted (well, most of the time). For that time, I could tell how in love he was with Gabriel – he was looking at her with the same look in his eyes that Jack looks at me with.

I said I was going to have one drink and that was going to be me done for the night. I never stuck to that though. I was just finishing my first vodka and coke as Hamael was finishing her lap dance. I was about to go back and sit with everyone when I hear Hamael say that she always loses bets, and one day Gabriel’s going to have to lap dance for her. Then, Gabriel’s response that kept me where I was: ‘If you wanted me to lap dance for you, all you had to do was ask’, and the cheering started again and I needed another drink as an excuse to stay at the bar.

I was watching Michael watching Gabriel lap dancing for Hamael. At first I thought he was a bit jealous, but he just said ‘Nah, Gabriel lap dances for me all the time.’ Too much information…

Gabriel came over to us then, out of breath but with a huge smile on her face, and sat on top of Michael. They sat there for a minute or two, both with their arms around each other. It’s a weird thing to see Gabriel like that, so calm, like the second Michael puts his arms around her she turns from a tiger into a kitten.

It didn’t last for too long though, less than two minutes later Gabriel was dragging me back to everyone else to play “a game”. Now, in my right mind, there’s no way I’d join in with that kind of game, especially with Gabriel, but I’d just had two vodka and cokes, so ‘Truth, dare or get spanked by everyone here’ seemed like a really good idea.

It was somehow really good fun though. I’ve got nothing to hide, so I went with truth every time, but the dares some of the others did were just really…I don’t even have the word. Since it had been Gabriel’s game, she was the one who got to decide on most of the truths and dares for everyone else. You can imagine the types of things she wanted people to do. Hamael took the dare right away because she knew Gabriel was going to make her take off what little clothes she had. That’s not even really a dare for Hamael, it’s more like permission. It did give me a small bit of satisfaction to see her wince as she pulled the duct tape off which was holding her ‘clothes’ in place, although that disappeared when Gabriel decided to lick it better…

Other ‘highlights’ included Nisroc having to lick everyone in the group in a place of their choosing. No prizes for guessing where Gabriel chose.

Michael had to stick his…private parts in a bowl of strawberry jam and have Gabriel lick it off. I closed my eyes and covered my ears for that one. Not pleasant to watch. Not even pleasant to think about.

Rehael got duct taped to a pole upside-down for ten minutes and all the blood rushed to his head, he had a headache and couldn’t think properly for a good while after that.

Gabriel naturally wanted to be spanked by everyone on her first turn. I hit her so hard though, she decided to do a truth on the second turn. Cathetel asked her what the biggest object she had ever inserted into herself was, and we got a very graphic story about the time Gabriel had managed to get hold of a 20 inch dildo from a guy who was having an affair with her at the time, and her mission to get it all the way in. That’s the kind of stuff I really didn’t want to know.

For me, my first truth was that Gabriel wanted to know about the first time I had masturbated. She harassed me for ages after I said I never had, saying I was lying and if I didn’t tell the truth I was going to get spanked. In the end, she was drunk enough to believe the totally ridiculous story I made up about how I’d done it in the toilets while on a school trip when I was 12. I kept making it more and more stupid and implausible as I went along, waiting for her to realise it was a lie, but she never did.

For my second truth, Gabriel wanted me to tell her about the first time I had given someone a blow job. I don’t know what kind of person she thinks I am. I told her I never had and had no intention of doing so, but her responses to those two statements were ‘No wonder Damien went off with two other girls’ and ‘That’ll all change when you see Jack standing there naked.’

It came around to my turn again, but Gabriel (who had had a fair bit to drink by this point) decided that I was too boring doing truths all the time, so she invented a new rule – ‘three truths and it’s spanking time’, so basically the only way I could get out of being spanked was to do a dare. I think Gabriel really wanted to spank me, but I could see her mind buzzing with ideas the second I said dare. It didn’t take long for her to decide though. Less than five seconds later, she came out with ‘I’ve always wanted to see you pole dance’. Ugh, why didn’t I just take the spanking? No, why was I joining in with this game at all?

The worst part was, I didn’t even object to it. My only real excuse was that I didn’t know how to. Of course, Gabriel was more than willing to teach me, and that was how I ended up up on the stage with all the angels clapping and cheering at me.

Remembering I’m a bit drunk, the first thing I came to realise was that it’s impossible to pole dance in an almost knee length skirt. The second I said that, Gabriel burst out with ‘You can have mine!’ and started undoing her zip. I managed to be sober enough to stop her, but not sober enough to know what the outcome would be of letting Gabriel loose with scissors on the skirt I was wearing. And at the time, I didn’t mind that she had cut my skirt barely below my bum and that she’d slit the side all the way up to my hip.

Gabriel teaching me how to pole dance is not something I wish to go to great lengths describing. That’s one part of my hen night that I think I’d probably rather forget. You’ll just have to imagine it.

The truth, dare or get spanked by everyone here kind of ended after that. Gabriel was quite flustered after watching me pole dance so she took Hamael with her to the toilet and they didn’t come back for the best part of an hour. I didn’t ask what they were doing in there all that time, I didn’t want to know.

The hen night became a bit more civilised after that. I went around with Michael talking to everyone. We started off chatting to Gaz, Pash and Uriel, since they were a bit more sane than everyone else (at first appearance, anyway). Gaz was telling me he’s been married over a thousand times and been to almost five thousand weddings. Nothing too weird until he started talking about how everyone was talking about me when Jack proposed and how he fell off his chair in excitement when someone told him. Uriel was fun to be around too, although she would do weird things like suddenly become emotionally attached to the table and get very defensive if any of us tried to put our drinks on it. I think she was a bit emotionally attached to me as well. A bit? As much as I hate chatspeak, the word ‘lol’ seems appropriate here. Pashcar was by far the most normal, other than the fact she couldn’t see anything and wanted me to hold her hand so I couldn’t leave her without her knowing. Michael spent quite a bit of time with Pash, being compassionate to her since she couldn’t do much if she couldn’t see.

Iahel and Charoum were bickering in the corner, so I decided to leave them be. I can’t blame Charoum for being wound up by Iahel. Iahel wound me up when she’d interrupt me, so for someone like Charoum whose whole life revolves around saying and expressing things, it must have been the worst kind of torture.

Muriel was overjoyed when I came to sit with her. Her face lit up. She was grinning all the way through talking to me, then all of a sudden she burst out into tears and told me how terrible she felt for me and Jack and how awful my future was going to be without him. Thanks for reminding me. I decided to leave her to it then. Even when I was talking with other people, I could hear her heaving dramatic sobs in the corner.

I learnt with Shekinah that the best method of dealing with her jealousy was to give her what she thought she wanted, then she’d quickly lose interest. She was hard work though.

Lailah was a different story to Gabriel. She was absolutely abhorred by the fact that I was planning on having sex with Jack but not getting pregnant. Other than that, she was nice to talk to, although I did wonder whether Gabriel would have been responsible enough not to invite her if she could make people pregnant just by looking at them and I wasn’t on the pill.

Xaphan somehow managed to engage me in a conversation concerning the ups and downs of using plastic skittles instead of wooden ones in bowling alleys. I’m not quite sure how that conversation started, but it went on for ages.

Xaphan decided it was time for another game. The good old hen night classic – chess. Yeah, chess. I thought he was going to whip a chess set out of his pocket or something. It wouldn’t have surprised me actually, that’s the kind of guy he was. He didn’t, but he was adamant that he wanted to play chess, despite the fact that we didn’t have a chess set. Unfortunately, he and Nisroc managed to overcome this problem. Nisroc had several rolls of white electrical insulation tape, which he used to mark out a chess board on the stage, and Xaphan was inventive enough to decide they could use drinks bottles as the chess pieces, and use the white insulation tape to distinguish between black pieces and white pieces. But no, just using drinks bottles wasn’t interesting enough. The bottles and glasses had to be full (as if we didn’t have enough empty ones lying around) and if any of your pieces were captured you had to down the contents.

I wouldn’t have minded that much if Xaphan hadn’t decided that he wanted to play with me, the girl who’s only played chess four times in her life and lost all of those four games. And for some reason, I decided to get up on the stage with him with everyone else watching us and play chess. The pawns were shots of vodka, the castles were pints of beer, the knights were bottles of Bacardi, the ‘white’ bishops were bottles of blue WKD and the ‘black’ bishops were red WKD bottles, the queens were bottles of white wine and the kings were bottles of red wine.

We never finished that game. I somehow managed to get away with only having to down three pawns, while Xaphan was on the floor after I took his queen.

Next, Munkir and Nakir both decided they wanted to play me at chess. They bickered for ages over who was going to play me first, ‘you always get to go first at everything etc etc, but eventually they ‘agreed’ to work as a team, although they argued over every move they were going to make. They did really seem to hate each other.

I beat them the first game, I managed to get them into check on my seventh turn, and checkmate on my ninth. Nakir never let Munkir hear the end of it that that move was his idea.

Then they decided best of three, but I beat them again. I had to down four shots of whisky and a bottle of Bacardi on that one. I think I got off quite easy though, they were really bad at chess. They were so consumed with arguing with each other when they both had the same basic ideas, they weren’t really concentrating on the game.

I was beginning to get drunk now, so I lost the fourth game (when Munkir and Nakir decided it was then best of five). Xaphan was absolutely plastered after I beat him, he grabbed the bottle of red wine that I would have had to down as my king before I could even touch it.

Gabriel and Hamael returned before the end of the last game, but I was too drunk to care what they’d been doing in the toilet for an hour, and even if I had been sober, I don’t think I’d have wanted to know. Well, I beat Munkir and Nakir, again. They went off on their own into a corner to have a drunken argument after that.

Well, we now had a load of drinks sitting around from chess of the pieces that hadn’t been captured. I don’t know at what point I decided it would be fun to join in with the game Xaphan came up with to do with them. It more or less involved us sitting in a circle, one of us having a drink and then passing it in your mouth to the person sat next to you. If you spilt or swallowed any (this was Hamael’s idea), you had to take one item of clothing off. Hamael was doing it on purpose though, although she insisted afterwards that she didn’t need an excuse to take her clothes off. For most of us, it was a matter of sort of aiming it into their mouth, although Gabriel made a great show of practically snogging the drink into the mouth of whoever she was sat next to at the time, that was if she wasn’t swallowing it as an excuse to get naked.

After that, we ended up limbo dancing, I’m not sure how though. That was an interesting experience to have while you’re drunk, I can tell you that. And of course, Gabriel, being about as drunk as I was by that point, loved to watch everyone bending over backwards. Rehael joined in too for once, although he was complaining about what was the point of going under bent backwards and crawled under it every time.

I somehow ended up inviting them all to the wedding. I admit, they were hard work while they were at the reception, but I’m glad I did invite them. After the limbo dancing we were all sat around, most of us recovering from damage done from positions our backs were not supposed to be put into, when Charoum was saying how much they all wish they could come to the wedding, then I just said ‘Oh, go on then’. They all looked at me then like I’d personally made them all win the lottery. I wonder if I would have said that sober. Don’t get me wrong, I hope I would have, because they were great fun to have at the wedding (well, when I wasn’t dying from embarrassment anyway).

Nisroc and Hamael didn’t like it when I told them the rules that applied to Gabriel about what she was allowed to wear applied to them as well, but I told them if they didn’t go by those rules then they couldn’t come. Of course, the rules applied to everyone else too, but I knew I didn’t have to worry about anyone else. I was even more worried about Hamael than I had been about Gabriel. Gabriel didn’t wear much, but at least she wasn’t taking every opportunity that came up to take her clothes off.

Somebody put some very loud music on then and we spent the rest of the night dancing after that. Gabriel was still denying on the night of the reception that it had been her who put ‘you can keep your hat on’ in the CD player and had ultimately ended in Xaphan doing a strip show and naked pole dance for us. We all thought it was hilarious at the time. Remind me never to get drunk again.

I’m not sure what time it was or where we were, I must have fallen asleep and woken up for a few seconds and fell asleep again, but I remember being outside and Gabriel complaining how cold she was, then I had the most genius idea that she should wear more clothes if she’s cold, then her looking at me as though that was the most stupid idea in the history of ideas.

I could have absolutely murdered Gabriel when I woke up the next morning. I had a bit of a headache, but I had been pacing myself the whole night, so I wasn’t really too hungover, and the headache passed by the time I got home. Remember those handcuffs Nisroc had been fiddling with when I first met him? This is where I saw them again. I’m not sure if I’ll ever forgive Gabriel for what she did. I found myself in my underwear, handcuffed to a lamppost and having no idea where I was. There wasn’t another soul in sight, although that might have been a good thing. Actually, that’s not strictly true, because there was someone else there. As I started to struggle to get out of the handcuffs, Jack, also in his underwear and handcuffed, woke up behind me. I swear, there is a huge debt to be repaid to me by Gabriel one day. I can’t remember ever wanting to hurt someone so much before. I still don’t know much about his stag night (although if Gabriel was involved, I think that’s a good thing), but I could have murdered Gabriel twice over – once for doing this to me and again for doing it to Jack.

I didn’t want to turn around at first, me and Jack weren’t supposed to see each other before the wedding, but tradition wasn’t going to help us get married if we couldn’t get out of the handcuffs because of it.

Oh, that compassionate side of Gabriel. She was kind enough not to just handcuff us both to a lamppost in our underwear and run away. No, she did leave the keys with us. Jack swivelled around the lamppost to be next to me so he could kiss me, because at the time I was getting so angry that I was just about ready to lift the lamppost out of the concrete to get free. As he was moving around, and as I leaned in to kiss him, I felt something cold down my bra. The key. At the same time, Jack felt something cold in his pants too. The key to his handcuffs. Great. We were both touching the keys to our handcuffs, but we just couldn’t get our hands there to use them. I could have killed Gabriel four times over now.

I sort of gave up on trying to get my key. I was cold and tired and I didn’t have the energy. I’d used up all my energy being angry, and Jack kissing me had completely drained me. Screw the wedding, I would have been happy to just get back to sleep at that point. Jack was trying to keep me going, saying ‘If we want to get married today, we’d better figure out how to get these keys’, but I didn’t have the energy, just a calm hatred that was growing inside of me.

That was when Jack hit upon the solution. I couldn’t get my hands down my bra to get the key. Jack couldn’t get his hands to my key either, but he could get his mouth…Oh, and by the way, this key wasn’t hanging out of the front of my bra, it was pushed right down the side. Nisroc and his bloody duct tape too. The end was taped into the inside of my bra so that it couldn’t be easily removed.

Jack finally managed to get the key out of my bra with his mouth, after what must have been at least ten minutes of having his face in my chest. My shoulders were hurting so much by the time he managed to use the key in his mouth to unlock my handcuffs from having my hands behind my back for so long.

I had to retrieve Jack’s key after that. I couldn’t even look at him while I was doing it. I knew, against his will before we were married, he liked it. By the end, I didn’t just want to murder Gabriel, I wanted to keep her locked up in a torture chamber for the next several decades.

Speak of the devil, she pulled up in her red Ferrari then with Michael. I was a bit annoyed at Michael for not being compassionate enough to stop Gabriel from doing it, I thought I could trust him, but Gabriel was the one I really wanted to let rip on. I wasn’t even thinking about it. I charged towards her with my fist ready to smack her into next year. She was so cocky too. ‘Warning: any violence towards the driver or her lovely car will result in said driver pissing off without you.’ I wanted to hit her even more then. It almost became my sole purpose in life. I didn’t doubt that she would leave me and Jack behind though, so I had no choice but to climb in the back. I think if Jack hadn’t been there with me, I would have gone ballistic at Gabriel. Even with Jack there, I still probably would have done it if he hadn’t been kissing me all the way back. I wasn’t so engrossed with Jack that I didn’t notice Gabriel looking at us in the rear view mirror every 15 seconds though. Her stupid excuse for a towel she gave us too to cover ourselves with. It was barely bigger than a flannel. No use in warming ourselves up whatsoever. Me and Jack had to wrap ourselves around each other to warm ourselves up after being outside in our underwear, although I think that was Gabriel’s intention.

I’m not sure there are many girls who can say they’ve snogged their husbands in the back of a Ferrari though.

Me and Jack were so lost in each other on the way back, we didn’t even notice when Gabriel pulled up outside of Jack’s house. We both noticed the car stop (or at least I did), but Gabriel didn’t say anything, she just carried on watching us. It wasn’t until I noticed that both she and Michael had turned around in their seats to watch us that I noticed we were back. It was a bit disappointing though. As mad as I was at Gabriel, I was quite enjoying myself. I was so tired though, and so was Jack. We both went home and went to bed for a few hours, since it was still only 6am and the wedding wasn’t until 1. I was so tired I got home and went to bed and was straight asleep without all the fidgeting and rolling over that normally comes when I’m forced to sleep without Jack.

I was so grouchy when Gabriel woke me up at 9. I’d had nowhere near the amount of sleep I really needed, although I wasn’t really expecting to sleep the night before my wedding anyway. 9 was about the latest I could really afford to wake up, since Nicole was due at 10. I was in the right mood to stay in bed for another half hour or so, but I’d gone to sleep in what I’d come home in (my underwear), and Gabriel stole my duvet when she woke me up and then proceeded to sit in my seat admiring me, so I decided it was time to get out.

I had to get Michael to stand guard outside the door while I was having a shower. Gabriel was doing everything she could to get inside. I put my pyjamas back on after my shower, since I was going to put my wedding dress on after Nicole had finished my hair and makeup. I tried to eat breakfast, but my stomach was full of butterflies, I was so nervous and excited and so many other things too.

Nicole came at 10 and did my hair and makeup, she really did a fantastic job. Gabriel wouldn’t admit it, but I think even she was impressed. Took about an hour to do. By the time she was finished, I was really beginning to get nervous. Eleven o’clock, two hours before the wedding. After Nicole left, I went upstairs to put my wedding dress on. I stood there with my wardrobe doors open for ages. My clothes were still all over the place after Gabriel had thrown them everywhere the night before, so the only thing left hanging in the wardrobe was my dress. I couldn’t believe the day had come. I was almost scared to put it on. I had been waiting like what seemed forever. And when I did put it on and looked in the mirror, the feeling was unbelievable. I couldn’t believe it was me and it was happening. The feeling was just indescribable.

By now it was almost eleven thirty. Michael had made me a cup of coffee just the way I like it with two and a half sugars. I really needed it. I was so happy, but at the same time I was a bag of nerves. It felt like I was in a dream, it was almost like bliss. I’ve never been that happy before.

And that was when my dad came home. The feeling I had of wanting to murder Gabriel when I woke up handcuffed to the lamppost with Jack was nothing compared to the feeling I had towards her now. In a second, my feeling of pure bliss and happiness shattered into a million pieces. I was so angry, upset, betrayed that Gabriel hadn’t kept him away. I don’t think I’ll ever forget the look on my dad’s face as he came around the corner into the kitchen and I was sat there at the table ready to go to my wedding, even though I only looked at him for a few brief seconds before I fixed my most vicious glare on Gabriel. She wasn’t looking at me though. That wasn’t going to stop me talking to her though. Well, shouting, actually. I didn’t care if my dad was stood right there and could hear me. I didn’t care if the whole street could hear me. ‘You said you were gonna make sure he didn’t come home!!!’ Gabriel took a deep breath before she looked at me again. ‘Do you want the long answer or the short answer?’ Any excuse to ignore my dad for a few more seconds: ‘Long answer.’ ‘…I lied.’ ‘What the hell was the short answer?!?’ ‘Bye!’

Gabriel tried to get up and leave then, but before she could stand I shoved her back down onto her seat. ‘I knew it was a mistake to ask you from the beginning!! Why did I think it was a good idea to trust you?!? You come, get me pissed the night before my wedding, leave me and Jack handcuffed to a lamppost in our underwear, and now this!’ I was so close to doing serious damage to Gabriel. I was shouting so much my throat was really beginning to hurt.

If it hadn’t been for Michael, I think I really would have put Gabriel in hospital. Michael came and put his arms around me for long enough for me to calm down a bit. I could feel myself shaking. I still wonder if I still would have gotten as mad as I did if it weren’t for the sleep deprivation, but I was such a well of emotions that day, it’s not really surprising I got so angry so quickly. When I’d at least stopped hyperventilating, he talked to me so softly in my ear I don’t think Gabriel or Dad heard him. ‘Just talk to him, you both need it.’ ‘I can’t, Michael.’ ‘You can, you’re stronger than you think. Me and Gabriel will be back in plenty of time for the wedding. Just talk to him and see what happens.’ I really didn’t want to let Michael go, but I couldn’t stop him. He and Gabriel were gone, and I was left in the kitchen with my dad.

I could feel him staring at me, even though I wasn’t looking at him. Once my anger passed, I started to feel quite smug. What a way to tell your dad how much you really hate him than to sit there ready to go to your wedding and have him find you when he doesn’t know a thing about it. I looked at him then, but as soon as I made eye contact he looked away from me.

The silence went on for a good few minutes before my dad decided on something to say. ‘It looks like I haven’t been a part of your life enough.’ I laughed then. ‘You don’t say.’ ‘Poppy, we need to talk.’

I think it will be a long time before I forget what was said between us that morning.

‘Nine years and you hardly said a thing. Now, an hour and a half before my wedding, you decide we need to talk. I needed to talk nine years ago, and it didn’t happen. You’re too late.’
‘Nine years…’
‘Nine long, painful years.’
‘How old are you now, Poppy?’
I had to laugh then. He didn’t even know how old his only daughter was. That goes to show something. ‘Eighteen.’
‘I’m so sorry.’
‘Sorry doesn’t quite cut it.’
‘I’m a terrible father.’
‘You can say that again.’
‘I know. I’m sorry, I let things get away from me. Things have got to change.’
‘What’s brought all this on?’
Dad took a deep breath. ‘I went out last night.’
‘You go out almost every night.’
‘Let me finish. I met a girl last night. She can’t have been much older than you. She was sat on her own crying in the corner, so I went to sit with her and find out what was wrong and if there was anything I could do to help.’
Dad shook his head. ‘Something weird happened. I don’t know. The second I sat down next to her some great depression came over me. I didn’t know why, but I wanted to cry with her. I was so upset I started to feel physically sick. I threw up over the poor girl in the end.’
Poor Camael…
‘I don’t know what came over me. I was feeling so awful I wanted to kill myself. She told me she was going to kill herself too. We somehow agreed to do it together. We went to that bridge over the river as you head out of town, climbed over the railings, and I watched her jump.’ Dad started crying then. ‘I never knew her name. It reminded me how short and precious life is. How important things are and how much I’ve been wasting and taking for granted.’
‘Then what?’
‘I felt like such a failure. I was really going to jump after her, but a girl came up to me and stopped me. She knew the girl who had jumped before me. She got me talking about what I was so depressed over. I realised you’re all I have left.’
‘And yet you’ve been ignoring me all this time.’
He looked at me then. ‘The older you get, the more and more you look like your mother. I can hardly bear to look at you sometimes.’
‘It’s been nine years, Dad.’
‘You never get over the death of someone you love.’
As if I didn’t already know that.
‘The day Marie and I got married was one of the happiest of my life, second only to the day you were born. I told myself I was going to be the best dad ever.’
I don’t know what it was, but something stopped me from saying ‘Well, that went out the window, didn’t it?’
‘Us three had some of the best times, didn’t we?’
I was starting to cry now. I didn’t want to think about Mum on my wedding day. I wanted her to be there. I didn’t want him to, but Dad noticed. ‘Why are you saying all this?’
Dad shrugged. ‘There’s apparently a lot I don’t know about you. You were going to get married without telling me.’
‘Yeah, still…’
‘You probably think I turned into some cold heartless monster after your mum died.’
I didn’t argue. It was more or less true. ‘All I wanted was to talk to you, but you didn’t want to listen.’
‘I couldn’t listen.’
‘I was nine years old! You were supposed to be my dad!’
‘I was going through the worst time of my life. Things had happened that you didn’t know about.’
‘Like what?’
Dad didn’t answer me for a few seconds. ‘Do you really want to know?’
I decided I did, even though I really didn’t. ‘Yeah.’
‘You never knew your mum was pregnant before she died, did you?’
That knocked the wind from my chest. The tears really started coming then. ‘Why didn’t you ever tell me?’
‘We were going to, me and Marie. We’d spent so long trying for another baby. You were the best daughter we could ever ask for, but we wanted a son too. Marie wanted a big family. We were so happy when she found she was pregnant again. Then a few months later, that night came. I’ll always remember that night. It was a Friday. I was supposed to finish work at six, then I was going to come home and we were going to tell you together…’ Dad stopped for a few seconds. It was strange and unusual for me to see him showing any kind of emotion. ‘She was expecting a boy. We were going to call him Jack…We were so looking forward to telling you. Then, half past five that night we were all told the company I was working for at the time had gone bust and we were all made redundant a few weeks before Christmas. I had to come home and tell your mum that. I came home and found her crying. I thought she somehow already knew , but she didn’t. At the same time I’d been being made redundant, she’d had a miscarriage. I couldn’t find the words to say to her. In the end she decided she needed some space and went out for a walk by herself. Four hours later, the police were knocking on the door…I’d gone from looking forward to telling you you were going to have a baby brother to having to find the words to somehow tell you your mother had been killed.’
I was in floods of tears now. So much I went and sat next to Dad and he put his arms around me for the first time in years. ‘All this time, you never told me.’
‘I know, but it was so painful and you just never needed to know. It wasn’t until I met Angela that I was able to talk about it.’
‘Who’s Angela?’

Then Dad told me all about her. When he found a new job five months later, he met and fell in love with Angela. I almost felt jealous on Mum’s behalf until he told me the reason I never knew Angela. The day the school called my dad in to talk about holding me back a year was the same day Angela was diagnosed with small cell lung cancer, exactly the same as Jack. It suddenly all made sense to me. How could I blame him for not caring about me when that was going through his mind? I’ve been there myself. It was almost like looking in the mirror for me, or a glimpse into the future. Is that what I’m going to be like when Jack’s gone?

Dad told me how Angela didn’t want a slow and painful death. She turned down the chance to have chemotherapy and four weeks later she was dead. After that, he promised himself he was never going to let himself fall in love again, and that was how he ended up like he is now.

After everything he’d now told me, I understood completely. I couldn’t blame him for acting the way he has for so long when he had gone through exactly the same thing that I’m going through right now. I wish he could have told me all this years ago. At least that way I’d know and not have spent my life wondering why he had been ignoring me. I know how he feels now.

It seemed appropriate then to tell Dad about Jack. It had been something I hadn’t wanted to think about on my wedding day, but I couldn’t not tell him. It helped to be able to talk to someone who knew exactly what I was going through, even if I did cry all the way through. I never thought the person I’d be able to talk to like that would have been my dad though.

Dad was shocked to hear me tell him about Jack having cancer, but he listened to every word I had to say. I told him the whole story of how we met and how he’d later told me he had cancer right up to what had happened to end up here with me about to marry him.

Dad told me how Angela wanted him to stop seeing her when she found out she was going to due and I told him that Jack was exactly the same. And after we had both found out our loved ones were dying, it made us both love them even more. Me and Dad are more alike than we had thought.

Time was getting on, I didn’t realise the time until Gabriel and Michael came back to tell me my car was waiting outside to take me to the wedding. It was embarrassing when they first came in. Obviously this had all been Gabriel’s plan and I didn’t want to admit to her that it had worked. Not just that, but with all the crying I’d been doing my makeup was ruined. I really needed the magic hug that Michael gave me then.

I invited Dad to the wedding. I felt like he should be there after what had just happened. He went upstairs to find a suit to put on while I (very much reluctantly, but I didn’t have much choice) let Gabriel redo my makeup. I’ll probably regret saying this the second Gabriel reads this, but she did a brilliant job, even better than Nicole had done. I was worried at first when she started ‘This is now good, it’ll all have to come off’ ‘Gabriel, I’m getting married in 34 minutes.’ She was so quick though, it was done before Dad came back downstairs again.

My heart was racing when I got in the car with Dad to go to the wedding. Actually, it was when I stepped out the door and saw the car waiting there with all the ribbons and everything on it. I was almost crying on the way there. I could hardly believe that I was really on the way to my wedding. It was unreal, too good to be true. Dad had his arm around me all the way there. He couldn’t quite believe he was on the way to my wedding either, although obviously for different reasons.

Gabriel and Michael made their own way there. About three miles down the road we saw Gabriel’s Ferrari speed past us. They were already there when we arrived at about twenty to one.

Emily was waiting for us outside when we arrived, jumping up and down excited to see us. She was so pretty in her bridesmaids dress.

I was so nervous when I got inside, I was almost happy to have a reason to have a go at Gabriel. I quite liked the outfit she had been wearing at my house, I should have know that it couldn’t have been that easy to get her to wear something normal. The reason she had come in the Ferrari instead of coming in the car with us was so she could get changed and it would be too late for me to do anything about it once I was at the wedding. Her skirt was so tight it was a wonder she could walk in it, but it was two inches above the knee. The shirt was the problem. Technically, it was one inch below the collarbone, since there was a strap of fabric going across her collarbone. Of course, there wasn’t much going on below that other than cleavage. I let her off though since it could have been worse – at least it was above her nipples (her top was so tight everyone could clearly see that). I was waiting all day for her to fall off or give up on her six inch heels, I was rather disappointed to find it didn’t happen.

I knew it was going to be a sign of things to come though when I was talking to the registrar just before we were about to start and Gabriel whispered in my ear ‘Don’t you think she looks delicious?’ I was right, too. That didn’t even come close to being the worst thing she said.

Just before one, Gabriel and Michael went inside. I was an absolute nervous wreck. Michael gave me a hug and Gabriel gave me some general words of encouragement (she had wanted to hug me too, although I think that could have been more to do with the fact her heels put her boobs at my eye level), then they went inside and it was just me, Dad and Emily.

I don’t think I’d ever be able to forget the moment I stepped into the room, even if I wanted to. It’s hard to say what was the first thing for me to notice. Probably the smell – the aroma from all the different types of flowers was incredible. All the people there overwhelmed me. We had only been expecting 14 people, and now there were 35 with all the angels there. It was great (and pretty scary too!) to see to room full of people who had come to see me and Jack get married. Jack’s dad was there too – something I wasn’t expecting to see, although I could hardly complain. It was Jack’s choice, and his dad was just watching. My dad was walking me down the aisle!

Once I looked at Jack properly, I couldn’t take my eyes off him. I was wondering what I’d done to deserve him, he was so gorgeous. The way he was looking at me, I think he was having similar thoughts about me too. I almost forgot how to walk when I was looking at Jack. He knows I love it when he wears blue. He always looks fantastic when he wears blue, so that’s what colour his suit was. He had a deep blue fitted jacket, the same colour waistcoat and trousers, a pale blue shirt, and bright blue tie and a red poppy in his buttonhole. I went all weak at the knees. It was so easy looking at Jack to forget the amount of people watching me. As if I could care about anything else with him standing there like that.

Me and Jack were staring at each other all the way through the ceremony. I couldn’t take my eyes off him. He was just amazing. The way he was looking at me with his eyes and his smile…wow. Even through the tears of happiness in my eyes, that will be one of the images of Jack that will be burnt into my memory forever. He looked so brilliant, I was only vaguely aware of the wedding that was going on around us.

My hands were shaking so much as Jack put the ring on my finger, it was a wonder he got it on at all. And the kiss at the end, it was the best kiss I’ve ever had. Even with everyone watching us, I could have stood there forever with him. I can remember that kiss in perfect detail, the way it felt when he stepped forward and put his hands around my waist, how brilliant it felt to have him that close to me when I put my arms around his shoulders, and the feeling when our lips touched…Even him getting down on one knee on top of a mountain was nothing compared to that kiss. It was without a doubt the most perfect moment of my life.

I’ve got a point to make now. If Ramiel can make it stop raining for long enough for us to all go outside and take photos, Gabriel must be capable of refraining from…well, being herself. I was in such a state of pure happiness at the time she didn’t bother me too much (and Jack thought she was absolutely hilarious), but I look back at some of it now and I must remember to slap her the next time I see her.

It started before we’d even got outside as Gabriel declared for everyone to hear ‘I’m not used to having my photo taken with clothes on’ then proceeded to tell me and Jack and everyone else within hearing distance her history of page three and ‘I’ve been in Playboy three times now!’ Michael wasn’t even there to keep her under control. Not too long after Ramiel had decided she was going to stop it raining for us she got a migraine and Michael was trying to make her feel better.

I had to have a private giggle to myself as we got outside and it had obviously been raining everywhere except the hotel gardens where we were going to take the photos. There was even a ray of sun beaming down on us through the rainclouds and there was a rainbow overhead. Jack said it was like the angels were smiling down on our wedding. If only he knew there were 22 angels standing right there as he said that, or the actual angel responsible was in a fair bit of pain from doing that for us. I’m so grateful to Ramiel for doing that for us though.

Gabriel hardly stopped the whole time the photos were being taken. I could have just died when she pulled a tape measure from her pocket in front of everyone and said (so much more loudly than she really had to) ‘Hey Poppy, do you still want to measure my boobs?’ I thought that couldn’t get any worse until Jack looked at her and she decided to explain: ‘Well, Poppy said she was going to measure my boobs to make sure they’re too big. What do you think Jack? Are they too big?’ Jack just smiled and told her ‘They’re fantastic.’ It couldn’t even end there. ‘I’m so glad you think so because I’m not used to having boobs this small but Poppy doesn’t like it when they’re big.’ I buried my face in Jack’s chest to hide the fact that all the blood had rushed to my face. And Gabriel still couldn’t let it end. ‘Aww, bless! She’s gone bright red! Don’t worry, my boobs aren’t much bigger than yours today!’ Please, just kill me now… I’m so glad Jack didn’t decide to question how she could change the size of her boobs, because she couldn’t have given him the truth. I don’t want to know what she would have come up with.

I didn’t notice at the time, but now we’ve got the photos back I realise that Gabriel had pulled her skirt up for most of them. I can’t believe I didn’t know. Two inches above the knee, it’s barely two inches blow her bum in some of them. Other than that, she’s got her hand on someone’s bum in a lot of the photos (including Jack in one – seriously Gabriel, you’re dead the next time I see you).

Oh, another thing I could have killed Gabriel over – how she decided to ‘help’ the photographer. ‘On the count of three, everyone say “testicles!” One, two, three…’

Other than that, we did actually manage to get some really nice photos. There’s a really nice one of Gabriel and Michael – you’d almost think they were a normal couple in that photo. There’s a fantastic big group picture of everyone. Gabriel’s even got her skirt down and her hands are in front of her too. I’d want to get that picture printed really big for my room, but in a few months I’m not sure if I’ll even be able to bear to look at it…

Me and Jack took Ramiel back in to sit down after the photos were done, since Michael was otherwise occupied. As soon as the last photo had been taken, Gabriel grabbed hold of Michael and dragged him back inside saying as loud as I think she possibly could ‘We have to find a bed before this vagina consumes someone!’ and Jack looked at me as if to ask ‘How do you know her?’

It poured down with rain once we got inside, although it was really sunny at the same time, which was a strange sight to see. Ramiel was worn out from all the effort she had gone to to stop it raining.

The whole day was interesting because we obviously couldn’t really tell or let anyone else know they were all angels, and for most of them their names were a dead giveaway. Some of them were alright, but for example, put three people called Gabriel, Michael and Uriel in a room together, and you don’t even have to be Christian to figure out there’s something weird going on there. Most of the angels came up with their own human names so they’d fit in and not arouse any kind of suspicion, but then that caused problems with me trying to remember their new names. It had took me long enough at my hen night trying to remember their real names, and now I had to learn a whole new set of names for them. Michael was fine, he could easily get away with keeping his real name. Gabriel stayed as she was too – Gabriel is a human name even if it’s not that common (and I made her stay as Gabriel after she pointed out that Gabriella was her porn star name). Muriel again was fine, she had a perfectly normal name. Munkir, Nakir and Regina kept their real names too – even if they’re uncommon or unusual, they weren’t really angelic sounding names. Some of the others were easy to remember, like how Cathetel became Cathy and Lailah became Leah, but others were hard. For some reason, I couldn’t remember that Mellkis…Miches…Melchisedek? Screw it, Melanie. You know who I’m talking about. For some reason, I just couldn’t remember his new name was Chris. It seems so obvious now I’m sat here thinking about it.

Gabriel and Michael came back to us before we all sat down for lunch. They looked like they’d been having fun, that’s all I’m going to say.

I’ve got to say what a fantastic job the caterers did. The food was absolutely delicious and they had to bend over backwards to make enough food for 38 people when they’d only been expecting 16, but they were brilliant. They didn’t even ask any questions when we asked if Sarah (Shekinah to you and me) could have two meals – one of each so she couldn’t be jealous of what other people were having.

I was so full after the meal, but it was so nice I could easily have had another helping. I felt like I could have popped out of my dress. Gabriel looked like she could too, although in quite a different way…

After the meal is traditionally speech time, but Jack didn’t have a best man and we’d only invited our dads to the wedding hours (not even that in my case) before it had started, so neither of them had very much to say. We were all about to move out into the other room then, but no. Gabriel decided she was going to instate herself and Michael as maid of honour and best man and show us all how a speech should really be done. Michael was actually really good, although I had to laugh at how he began. ‘In the short time I’ve known Jack…’ They hadn’t even known each other a day.

Gabriel’s speech on the other hand, made me extremely disappointed to find that the waitresses had taken all the cutlery away- I would have done anything for a knife or a fork to throw at her, since I wasn’t within hitting distance. She hadn’t given us any warning she was going to do a speech, we all thought it was just going to be Michael. She just stood up and started ‘As Poppy’s maid of honour, I feel that…’ I almost choked on my glass of wine.

It got worse and worse the longer it went on. ‘I’d like to thank Jack’s dad for allowing us the use of his pole dancing club for the hen and stag nights. People laughed at me. They said I’d never be able to get Poppy and Jack into the same pole dancing club without them knowing about each other.’ Everyone else laughed, but I could have killed Gabriel then. I couldn’t believe she had taken me and Jack to the same pole dancing club. I couldn’t believe she had taken Jack to one, but worse, one owned by his dad. That certainly explained all the free drinks we had had… me and Jack were both looking at each other. This was news to both of us. We both wanted to know what the other had been up to. Gabriel wasn’t going to keep us in suspense for long though. ‘Jack, if only you could have seen Poppy pole dancing last night…’ I felt myself go bright red as she said that. In true Gabriel fashion, it was only going to get worse from there.

I don’t know where Gabriel was hiding all this stuff inside her skirt. It was far too tight to have the kind of pockets she could have hidden a bunch of DVDs in, but that’s what she brought out anyway. ‘Here, wedding present!’ ‘Gabriel, what’s on this DVD?’ ‘A video I thought Jack might be interested in.’ ‘What kind of video?’ ‘Just a certain someone at a certain party last night dancing around a certain pole. It’s in full HD, the picture quality is amazing.’ How many times over did I want to kill Gabriel by now? ‘You didn’t tell me you were filming it!’ ‘You might have said no!’ I WOULD have said no!’ ‘Exactly!’ She’d even made two copies, so we could have one each. Thank goodness Jack had his arms around me, I needed the calming effect he normally has on me.

Still, it managed to get worse. Gabriel placed another DVD on the table. ‘Poppy, you might enjoy this one.’ I wasn’t sure if I wanted to know, but I knew she was going to tell me anyway. ‘What’s on THIS one?’ ‘This is one of me and Hannah lap dancing for Jack. Now it was Jack’s turn to go bright red. I guess that explained what Gabriel and Hamael had been doing for an hour ‘in the little girls’ room’. I wasn’t mad at Jack at all, but I was so annoyed with Gabriel. Me and Jack have since agreed we’re not going to watch either DVD. All the copies are in the back of my drawer and they’re never coming out again.

After that, we went out into the main room and me and Jack had our first dance. It was amazing, even though before Gabriel had been trying to convince us it should be a lap dance. ‘Go on, it’ll make your wedding different! You know you’re really good at pole dancing, I’ve got the DVD to prove it. Lap dancing isn’t really that much different to pole dancing. Either way, you’re dancing around something long and hard.’

Anyway, that didn’t happen…

Jack had taken his jacket off for the dance. The way he looked with his shirt and waistcoat on…he was fantastic. He looks absolutely gorgeous on a normal day, so the way he looked then…I’m running out of good synonyms for ‘amazing’.

The dance was brilliant. Like the kiss, I wanted it to go on forever. Jack was talking in my ear about how far we’d come in the four months we’d known each other. I couldn’t believe it had only been four months. It seemed like years. I started to wonder what I had been doing with my life before I met Jack, and how we had not met each other sooner since we live so close to each other. I said that to Jack, but he said the circumstances might have been different. We might not have gotten to know each other, and I might only have ever been the girl down the road to him. It was a horrible thought.

I caught Michael and Gabriel dancing together after that. It was certainly a strange sight to see, them acting like a normal couple. She had her arms around his shoulders too – not down his trousers or on his bum. She was leaning her head against his too. I wish I had got a photo to remind her of how normal she’s capable of being. I guess even Gabriel can’t resist the feeling you get when Michael puts his arms around you.

I think Michael couldn’t resist the feeling Gabriel gives people though. Not too long after that they disappeared for about 15 minutes and when they came back Michael was wearing a different shirt. I can imagine the reasons why.

Jack’s mum and dad were dancing together too. I could feel Jack watching them over my shoulder as he was dancing with me. I wonder what was going through his mind.

I danced with Michael when he and Gabriel came back. He would have been great to dance with if I could have relaxed and I didn’t feel like I had to keep my eye on Gabriel dancing with Jack. Michael’s affect had apparently worn off her by then – her hands were on Jack’s bum all the time they were dancing together.

Shekinah got jealous after that, she wanted to dance too. She danced with Jack while Charoum was very expressive about the fact that he wanted to dance with me. Michael whispered in my ear before he handed me over to him ‘Just nod and pretend you’re listening.’ It was good advice. I could barely get a word in edgeways all the time we were dancing together. I’ve got no idea what he was talking about. I was so happy to get Jack back after that. He was happy to get me back too. I think Shekinah had made him jealous.

After all the dancing we went back into the other room and cut the wedding cake, then after that I threw my bouquet. All the angels wet themselves laughing when Gabriel was the one who caught it. I said that meant she had to get married to Michael now, but she said ‘No way, marriage is supposed to mean you can’t have sex with anyone else.’ I did a double take when Michael said to Gabriel after that ‘Get rid of that bouquet before fate stops us seducing virgins.’ I’d expect that kind of thing from Gabriel, but Michael…I was so glad that by that point Jack had learnt to take everything they said as a joke, even though I knew they weren’t joking. Gabriel passed the bouquet to Gazardiel (aka Gary) who happened to be standing next to her. He was overjoyed that he got my bouquet. He kept saying he was going to treasure it forever. Naturally, Shekinah was jealous, but that’s just Shekinah.

After all that we went back and had a full on party. It was brilliant. Gabriel managed to get Yellow Submarine played, I wish I was able to say that it wasn’t the most fun we had all night, but it was. Everyone was banging on the tables and singing along, it was so funny.

Uriel spent a good while sulking in the corner. As we were all starting to eat the wedding cake, Uriel (aka Ariel) became emotionally attached to one of the little icing roses that had been on the cake. Poor old Sandy, he didn’t know and ate it. She spent a good while after that throwing a fit at him then proceeded to go and cry in the corner. Emily, bless her, she went over and hugged her to make her feel better and gave her the rose from her piece of cake.

Emily was so happy to see her dad again. I wondered how long it had been since they had last seen each other.

Oh yeah, I have news! Well, Gabriel and Lailah did something good at the wedding (makes a change for Gabriel). Gabriel overheard Jack’s cousin Susie telling someone about how she and her husband John had been trying so long for a baby, they had IVF before but it failed. They’ve been told by the doctor now she has something wrong with her womb that means she can’t get pregnant. Gabriel and Lailah (being the angel of conception) went off and spent at least three quarters of an hour with Susie and John. Susie phoned Jack’s mum on Monday night for a chat, apparently her period was due a few days after the wedding but she hasn’t had it yet, she thinks she might be pregnant. Early days yet though.

Gabriel was actually surprisingly well behaved. I never noticed anyone other than Michael missing with her. My only issue was her using the mens’ toilets. She claimed the reason was that she had been sitting with Pashcar (aka Carmen) and couldn’t see the sign properly, but I knew that was rubbish because of the fact that I had just been sat with Pash. I knew she was doing it on purpose the first time, and the second, and the third, and all the times after that. I don’t think I saw her go into the ladies’ toilets once. I knew she didn’t even need to go to the toilet, she was just going in there because she was just being Gabriel. The first time I caught her, I didn’t know what to do. I knew she was up to no good, none of the angels were going to go in there and stop her doing whatever she was doing, but I knew I couldn’t send Jack in there either. Jack happened to need the bathroom just after I saw Gabriel go in one time, I had to stall him long enough for her to come back out again. I saw Jack’s dad go in once after she went in. I saw him fumbling with his zip when he came back out again a second after Gabriel. My heart skipped a beat, although Gabriel insisted afterwards nothing had happened and it was just a coincidence. I gave up in the end and just hoped that whoever was in there at the time wasn’t going to encourage her to do anything.

Zuphlas was happy. One of Jack’s uncles is a builder – they were having an animated discussion about concrete all night.

And at the end of the night, me and Jack went to bed…

Oh yeah, Gabriel just before we went to bed. I don’t know what time it was, probably some time around midnight. Me and Jack had gotten tired of dancing and talking to everyone and went to sit in a corner by ourselves and have some time with each other. Jack was doing that smile at me and running his lips across my skin, and the way he was kissing me was so passionate. And the way his tongue…I won’t gross you out with the details. I could feel my pulse all the way through my body. And then, Jack kissed me and brought his lips up to my ear, and said in the most seductive voice I’ve ever heard come out of his mouth ‘Time for bed, don’t you think?’ I would have said yes if I had still retained the capacity of speech at the sound of his voice like that. It was all I could do to nod. I could barely wait for the bedroom, I wanted his clothes off there and then. I didn’t care how fantastic he looked in his clothes, I knew he was going to be even better out of them. We couldn’t wait around to tell everyone we were going, we were intending to just sneak off, but Gabriel wasn’t going to let that happen. I don’t know how Gabriel managed to hear what Jack had said, or where she suddenly appeared from, but all of a sudden she was in our faces dancing around singing ‘You’re going to bed! You’re going to bed!’ We know we’re going to bed, shut up! I’m so glad Gabriel couldn’t see from that angle that my hand was up Jack’s shirt, or that Jack was trying to do the zip back up on my dress. I was too ready for it to let Gabriel bother me though. I’d been waiting for too long.

I almost changed my mind on that when Gabriel decided to be ‘helpful’ and put what must have been the world’s largest tube of lube into Jack’s hand and said ‘You might want to use this the first few times, big boy, or Poppy’ll feel like she’s having a baby in reverse!’ She came around to my side then and said in my ear ‘It’s strawberry flavoured too.’ Ugh. I can’t eat anything strawberry flavoured now, it reminds me of that first time. Of all the weird things that could turn me on, it’s the smell of strawberries. We had strawberry shampoo on the honeymoon, I think that helped to contribute too.

Me and Jack couldn’t get to the bedroom quick enough, although not before Gabriel put her arms around us both and said ‘I’ll let you two virgins go have fun now.’

Our bedroom door seemed to take forever to open, we both wanted to get in so badly. Then when it was open, Jack lifted me up, threw me on to the bed, jumped on top of me, undid my zip and started to…nah, I’m going to keep Gabriel waiting on the description of that particular part of my wedding day.

Jack’s dad drove us to the airport the next morning after we’d said goodbye to everyone. It was hard for Jack to say goodbye to some of his family. They live so far away it was probably going to be the last time they ever saw each other.

I can’t remember the last time I wrote this much, and I’ve still got all the honeymoon to talk about yet…

The honeymoon was amazing, even more amazing than the wedding. We were at the airport before Jack told me where we were going. It would have been impossible for him to get me on a plane without me knowing where it was headed to. It didn’t make too much difference though. He had to tell me where the plane was going, but he still wouldn’t tell me where else we were going once we were there.

We slept almost all the way there. We were completely worn out, and we’d been up so late the previous few nights, the second we sat down on the plane we were pretty much asleep.

I suppose I should go from the beginning of the honeymoon, if there’s any way I can hope to remember to describe everything that we did, there was so much.

Anyway, New York City. The first of so many amazing places we went to across America. We stayed in New York for three days. It was such an amazing place. We did so much there. We went to the top of the Statue of Liberty and the Empire State Building, we went to Central Park, Brooklyn Botanic Gardens (that was an amazing place. There was so much there like Japanese gardens and rose gardens and cherry trees and…so much more. I could go on forever. It was beautiful). We went to Broadway and saw Phantom of the Opera (yeah, I know I’ve seen it before in London, but it was so fantastic I wanted to see it again, so we did! It made me cry just as much as it did last time too) and Hairspray, we spent a day in Chinatown in Manhattan, which was an amazing place. The culture there was fantastic. Well, not just Chinatown really, but the whole of New York. It was a bit of a culture shock at first. Life is so different there. We ate out every night, then at night we’d go back to our hotel and…well, yeah. It was like that for the whole honeymoon, not just in New York, and more than once a night, most nights. There was so much we did in New York, I couldn’t possibly hope to be able to describe it all here and now. It’d take forever. Museums, jazz clubs, restaurants, oh! The helicopter! We went on a helicopter and flew over Niagra Falls! That was absolutely breathtaking.

Then, as if New York wasn’t enough, we moved on then. Day four, we were back on the plane again heading west. Jack had wanted to go to Las Vegas and the Grand Canyon, but by American law, you can’t drink or gamble until you’re 21, so we gave that a miss, and the Grand Canyon was out of the way of where else we were going, so we didn’t go there either. I didn’t mind too much though, because it meant we got to go to Disneyland in California! That was fantastic. Took us half the day to get there on the plane, but it was so totally worth it. We stayed in one of the hotels in Disneyland for three nights, four days. They were having all of the Halloween events at Disneyland while we were there, which was really good. Me and Jack are such kids, we both loved Disneyland. I won’t go into too much detail, you can probably imagine what we got up to in Disneyland. I wish we could have stayed there longer, although I could say that about the whole honeymoon, it was so fantastic.

Then after Disneyland, we spent two days in Hollywood, which was great. We went to the walk of fame on Hollywood Boulevard, we went to the wax museum, and loads of other museums there too with all sorts of film stuff, we went up to the Hollywood sign, the hotel we were staying in was amazing, we had a king size bed, and it was so comfortable. We went on a tour of two of the movie studios too, that was brilliant. We saw Eddie Murphy and Reese Witherspoon while we were there too!

Then, for the rest of the honeymoon, Hawaii! Hawaii was brilliant. We went to the Sea Life park and went swimming with dolphins! We spent a lot of time on the beach, we went shopping in Honolulu and Waikiki, scuba diving on the coral reef, we even went in one of those cages underwater with the sharks! We went whale and turtle spotting, we went on a glass bottom boat, into the jungle, we flew over a volcano at night (that was unbelievable, the lava was running into the sea, which was fantastic to watch), we got up one morning to watch the sun rise (seriously, British sun sucks!), we went in a submarine, we went to the Waimea Canyon, and probably a load of other stuff that I can’t think of right now, there was so much of it. Hawaii was my favourite. Sun, every day. We only saw rain once for about 5 minutes. Warm rain is a really weird thing to experience. Our hotel was right by the sea too, so once we were done during the day we’d go down to the beach and stay there until about 10 o’clock at night, because the nights just weren’t cold at all.

So, now we’re back home and have 742 photos to look through. When did we take that many?

All in all though, I’m glad to be back in England now. These last few weeks have been total madness. We came home on Tuesday. Me and Jack are keeping strange hours at the moment. The jet lag hasn’t worn off and taken us back to British time yet. By the time I started getting used to the time zone we were in, we were heading west again and even further behind British time. Hawaii was ten hours behind England, so it’s going to take a while for us to get back to British time again. We got out of bed at 2pm today.

It’s so weird to have my dad talking to me now. He doesn’t say very much, but at least he acknowledges my existence when we pass each other and holds a conversation with me, even if it never lasts that long. He seems kind of embarrassed when he talks to me, like he doesn’t know what to say. I usually end up saying more than he does, but at least he’s listening.

Jack’s got a double bed in his room now, his dad bought it for us and put it in there while we were gone. Not that we sleep any further apart now we’ve got the space to anyway, but it is nice to be able to lie next to each other rather than on top of each other when we want to. We still go and sleep at my house though. Emily’s room is next to Jack’s, and it’s not fair for us to be…making noise while Emily’s next door.

Jack’s dad has been over loads since the wedding. He’s stayed the night quite a few times since the wedding, since he lives over an hour away. Emily’s certainly happy with him around all the time. He’s been taking her places for the half term. He took her trick or treating for Halloween tonight.

Jack’s mum has finished her job for a while. The college has given her the rest of the academic year off and someone else is teaching her classes so she can be home for Jack.

Gabriel, I’m sure what’s best for society isn’t people living in fear of being executed for putting so much as a toe out of line.

This damn weather, it’s so cold and miserable. I want to go back to Hawaii…

Ugh, I’ve been dreading the conversation I’m about to have with you.

Yeah, I supposed with what me and Jack have been up to since the wedding, claims that we’re both sex crazed maniacs wouldn’t be totally unfounded, considering on a low day we might only have sex three or four times.

Right, I’m beyond the point of caring who’s watching now, but the least you can do is stop recording it! Seriously! Do you really think I want to watch it back? Any DVDs I get will never see the light of day again, they’ll be straight in the drawer with the rest of them, assuming I don’t burn them.

Hold on, you’re saying I should PUT CLOTHES ON? I’ll remember this day forever…Unfortunate for you, the only person I have any intention of taking requests from is Jack.

You might be exhibitionist enough to want people watching, but what happens between me and Jack is going to stay that way. We’re not going to have people watching us, we’re not going to be setting up video cameras, we’re not going to be doing it in the middle of the high street, just no. It’s enough on our own, even if I did think there was anything else that could possibly make it any better than it already is.

Ha, yeah, it must have looked like we were trying for some kind of record. We weren’t doing it on purpose, it was just a result of going to so many places and doing so many different things, suddenly finding ourselves in the mood and not having the willpower to wait until we got back to our room. Nobody else around to see, so no real reason not to do it in the shower or in the hot tub or in the back of Jack’s car or on the beach. If someone had told me six months ago I’d be doing it as often as I am in as many places as I have, I’d never have believed them. Hey, I probably would have probably said the same just a few weeks ago.

Yeah, I know, mornings are getting a bit ridiculous now, but if it’s worth doing once, it’s worth doing twice. It’s always been a given that we’re going to do it in the shower, Jack doesn’t even bother asking if I want to shower with him now, he knows the answer is never going to be no.

Wednesday morning was the first time we did it in the shower and the bedroom in the morning, I can see it’s becoming a daily occurrence now though.

I shock myself at some of the things that I find coming out of my mouth. Like Wednesday, we’d just done it in the shower, got out, and Jack asked if I was planning on drying myself or if I was just going to stand there, and I told him I’d rather he dried me. I don’t think before I say things now, I say what I think, that’s what results in me saying things like I did Wednesday morning like ‘I hope you’re not planning on letting that perfectly good erection go to waste’. This morning made me laugh when he said ‘Do I have to dry you today or can I just bed you now?’ My rational side would have said ‘Well, if you don’t dry me then the bed’s going to get wet’, but I can’t say no to that voice and that smile, even if he hadn’t been half way inside me as he asked.

Yeah, I know. You were right, I was wrong, we’ve had sex in the shower almost every day since the wedding, I hope you’re happy. You’d think I would be better at not getting water in my mouth by now. The only time I’ve managed to not do that was yesterday morning. There was something else in my mouth yesterday…

I thought you’d like my wedding dress. Well, you and Michael should get married, you did catch my bouquet, you’re supposed to get married now! Is Gaz treasuring my bouquet as much as he said he would?

I got to the wedding after what must have been the most eventful 24 hours of my life and about 4 hours of sleep. I still haven’t forgiven you for handcuffing us to a lamppost in our underwear, don’t know if I ever will. And you let my dad come home. I don’t care what the end result was, you still lied to me and officially lost what little trust I had in you. It’s going to take a long time for you to earn that back.

The wedding was the most incredible day of my life, I don’t think anything will be able to come anywhere near close to matching how purely brilliant it was.

I did enjoy the hen night in a manner of speaking. I’m ashamed to say I did enjoy it. I’d almost be more inclined to say I enjoyed it the most while you weren’t there, at least it was generally civilised while you were gone (with the exception of when Xaphan got drunk playing chess and amongst other things tried to convince me to marry him instead of Jack and Nisroc had to duct tape him to a chair to stop him drinking any more), but now I know time you weren’t spending with me was time you were off lap dancing or otherwise trying to seduce my husband, I’ve revised that opinion on that. I’m never letting you throw me a party ever again though, I still feel mentally scarred from your truth or dare game.

No, that wasn’t me being quiet. Funnily enough, you’re the last thing I think about when me and Jack are having sex. I’m not going to let the thought of you watching do anything to spoil whatever Jack does to me, even if you did cross my mind for a second.

Ugh, I can’t be bothered to be embarrassed that you were watching that. It was bloody fantastic, if you really couldn’t tell. I wouldn’t have thought Jack had that kind of thing in him before. He’s turned into a right animal since the wedding (in a totally brilliant way). He can’t keep his hands or mouth off of me for more than 10 minutes, I love it.

The thing I can’t understand about you and Michael, beyond the totally unconditional love, is what makes you want to have sex with anyone else. I can’t even bear to think about doing it with anyone but Jack. It just wouldn’t be special if it wasn’t him. The thought repulses me, actually.

Did you really think I was going to stand there and measure you in front of everyone? You did seem to be picking the most embarrassing moments to say things. Even if I did measure you to check, it’s not like I could have demanded that you make your boobs the right size there and then. Com eon, there’s no way you were really a D.

On the plane, Jack did say to me ‘Don’t take this observation the wrong way, but I swear Gabriel’s boobs were far bigger at the stag night than at the wedding.’ I couldn’t say ‘Yeah, because they were. You did have a blinding continuity problem going on there.

Yeah, you didn’t flash anyone, well done. I did forget to hit you for grabbing hold of Michael’s head and shoving it in your boobs in front of Jack’s mum and dad though, you’ll have to remind me the next time I see you.

I can’t remember the last time I actually undressed myself, Jack always does it now. The way it makes me smile is nothing compared to the way it makes Jack smile though. Oh, that little turned on smile he’s got…It’s the same the other way around though, it’s been a good while since I last let Jack take his clothes off himself. I don’t know what it is about taking each other’s clothes off that’s so great, it’s probably knowing what’s going to come next.

Yeah, I know you can’t die. Doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy thinking about it. A LOT.

Well, I suppose I had better talk about sex properly now, I said I was going to.

Oh Gabriel, it’s been brilliant, and it gets better every time we do it. I don’t know how I can possibly do it justice by describing it, the English language seems so horribly inadequate.

I don’t actually remember very much of the first time, not in detail anyway, I was so overwhelmed by it all.

Me and Jack went back to our room at the hotel that night and Jack had the key. Every second seemed to go on forever as he got out the key and unlocked the door, we both wanted to get in so badly. Once he’d got in he turned to me and lifted me up and carried me in onto the bed, then literally jumped on top of me. I ripped his shirt off as he was undoing the zip on my dress, most of the buttons came off then. Was a shame, he looked really good in that shirt, but I just couldn’t wait any longer to take it off properly. The feel of his skin against mine as he took my dress off me was incredible. What is it about sex that makes you suddenly lose the ability to undo trouser buttons? I don’t know. From the time he first touched me there until the end, I don’t really remember any details other than the fact that I felt like my heart and my body felt like they couldn’t keep up with how incredible it felt. My heart rate must have quadrupled at the very least from the point he first went in, and then, at the end, with just him on top of me and us both looking at each other with tired, worn out smiles on our faces not knowing what to say.

The first morning we woke up in New York together and he asked if I wanted to shower with him…I couldn’t even answer him with words, a dirty laugh came out of my mouth. The only thing I don’t like about sex in the shower (apart from getting water in my mouth every time – the only thing worse than getting water in my mouth is getting bubbles in my mouth) is that he doesn’t undress me, because when we get out of bed in the morning we’re already undressed from the night before, but sex in the shower makes up for it in other ways like Jack having his hands all over me with bubbles. I love waking up with Jack with no clothes on. It just doesn’t get any better than that.

We didn’t have a shower in our room in Disneyland, only a bath, so we had sex in the bath in Disneyland. If we do that again, we’ll have to remember to not put so much water in. It was fine when we were just lying there, but once we started moving about there was water all over the floor. Then again, lying in a bath that’s only half full can’t be fun, even if it is with Jack.

Hawaii was where it really took off though. The first night we got there it was 11pm and we were in the hot tub, that was great. It was like in the bath but better. I think hot tub sex was my favourite, actually. All that nice warm water, but you don’t have to worry about getting it in your mouth like you do in the shower or on the floor like in the bath.

The beach was somewhere I never thought I’d be having sex with Jack. We were lying together on the beach one night at half past ten and there was nobody else around. We were lying there kissing, then I knew what it was going to turn into because of the way he was touching me – the way he touches me when he wants sex is different to the way he normally touches me – but I was in the mood by then too, and by the time he put his hand down my bikini bottoms and whispered in my ear that there was nobody else around, it wasn’t like I was going to say no at that point.

We did it by the pool in our hotel too one night, it was really hard keeping quiet though knowing there were people not that far away, even if they couldn’t see us.

I don’t know where to begin describing what it actually feels like though, it’s just unbelievable. It’s unreal what two bodies can do to each other. My heart beats like mad and I just can’t breathe enough to keep up with my heart, and my brain can’t hold onto any train of thought for more than a second and I can’t get even half a coherent sentence out, and Jack’s the same, all he can say is my name. The rest of the world seems to disappear and all that matters is me and Jack in those minutes of brilliance.

Sex on the honeymoon was quite different to sex since we’ve been home though, and not just for the reason that there’s far more of it now we’re home. It was different on honeymoon, we had other things to do, but now we’re home, there’s nothing much more to do with the weather being like it is, so it’s not unusual for us to be having sex every two or three hours if the opportunity is there.

Wednesday night was embarrassing, we lost track of the time. We were there on the sofa in my living room with Jack on top of me with no shirt on and us both in the process of undoing each others’ trousers when Dad came home from work. I’m just so glad he didn’t come home a minute later, my dad coming home to find that would have been awful. He knows we’re doing it, but I don’t want him to be there to see. I want to blush just thinking about it.

We’ve had sex in just about every room in my house now. We have to go down to my house because there’s always someone home at Jack’s house, whereas my house is empty from 8.30 in the morning until just after 6 in the evening, and even then, Dad doesn’t care what we do as long as we’re in my bedroom and we have the door closed. He doesn’t know about us having sex elsewhere in the house while he’s gone though, I don’t know if he’d mind or not. He knows what it’s like to have your loved one dying, he’s told me I’ve got to get the most out of every second I have with Jack. Well, if we were going to go upstairs to my room every time Jack put his hands down my trousers or started undoing his, that would be a good 15 seconds wasted.

We did it in the back of Jack’s car when we came home the other night, Jack’s mum and dad had taken Emily out so we knew nobody was home to see us, so we did it on the back seat. I didn’t like that so much though, it was weird me being on the top, but there’s not enough space in the car for me to be on the bottom.

Tuesday night Jack did it with his mouth…wow…that was something I wasn’t expecting…It was so different to doing it with his…..yeah. We’d already had sex twice since we’d gone to bed that night, it must have been some ridiculous hour of the morning when Jack woke me up with a kiss (ha, yeah, he hated waking me up when he was going into chemo for a week and I wasn’t going to see him, but he’ll wake me up for sex!) and started touching my body with his hands like he does, then his mouth, and he worked his way all the way down to…

Yesterday morning I did it to Jack with my mouth in the shower. I think it’s safe to say he liked that.

Right, I’m going to stop typing now or my fingers are going to fall off. That and Jack’s standing here waiting for me to undress him…