Sunday, April 21, 2013

Something Borrowed

Analise surveyed herself in the full-length mirror with a critical eye. She was forced to admit, under the circumstances, the dressmaker had done a wonderful job. Gone were the days when a blushing bride could swathe herself in crinoline and lace, organza and satin. Gone were the days of off-the-shoulder gowns and décolletage. Full sleeves and Victorian collars were the fashion now…Kevlar and carbon fiber and ballistic cloth.

She did her best to relax but her mind was awhirl with so many thoughts. Why did the damnable Zombie Apocalypse have to dictate not only what she would wear but every aspect of this day? The guest list had been completely redone since half of those invited were no longer living. She and Mitchell had decided on a different church than St. Stephen’s. St Michael’s did, in all fairness, have a much more easily secured perimeter for the friends and family.

How her father had managed to afford to hire an entire free mercenary battalion to cover the valet parking and catering as well as the armored limousine and support vehicles for the short trip to the reception was a mystery. Throughout this all, he’d been determined his little girl would have every extravagance still available given the near-total collapse of organized society.

There was a soft knock and her father slipped into the room. He cut quite a dashing figure in his Kevlar and carbon-boron fiber tuxedo. His tall boots, leather half gloves and pistol belt gleamed. She was surprised to see he’d chosen to carry his Desert Eagle for the ceremony. It was the pride of his collection and was seldom taken out of its display case. What a delightfully touching gesture, she thought, sniffing back tears.

“Here now! No crying. You’ll spoil your makeup.” His gruff demeanor was, she knew, a façade to cover the myriad of emotions welling up in him. “Your mother would…” His voice broke and he couldn’t finish the sentiment.
Analise threw her arms about him in an embrace that startled them both with its fervor. He fumbled to return the gesture while taking care not to drop the object in his hand. A corner of the polished oaken box poked her even through the ballistic fabric of her gown and she took a step backward, confusion coming to her features.

“If I remember wedding traditions right, then I think what I have here will cover both “something old” and the “something borrowed”. Go on, sweetie, open it. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.” He set his gift down on the side table.

Opening the lid, her eyes grew wide and she gasped. Within was the most beautiful handgun she’d ever seen. The grips had, quite obviously, been replaced since she couldn’t imagine her father owning a pistol with mother-of-pearl and gold-filigree. He was, no doubt, responsible for the nickel-plating, as well, since it wasn’t common for a 1911 .45 to be so adorned. It was…gorgeous.

“Your grandpa brought that back from the Big One. Yeah, I sissified it up for you a bit but I don’t think the old man would mind too much. Now, I know what you’re thinking. It’s only seven shots in the magazine but I taught you how to shoot well enough it should do just fine if you find yourself in a bad way. It’s…well…I can’t imagine it going to a better use than keeping my angel safe in the mess this world is coming to. Well, go ahead…try it on.” 

Hiking up her dress, she removed the Baretta Hi-Power from her thigh holster and slid the Colt into its place. Not a perfect fit, she mused, but she couldn’t imagine walking down the aisle with a finer gun.

Noting her father’s concerned frown, she giggled at her own foolishness in forgetting the most important thing of all. Withdrawing the weapon, she racked a round into the chamber and thumbed on the safety before re-holstering it. Smoothing her dress down, she looked up to see love and joy reflected in her father’s eyes. Holding out his arm to her, he waited for her to take it before opening the door.

“Now, let’s go have us a wedding!”

This story was written for the Dark Fairy Queen Writerly Bridal Shower honoring the impending marriage of Anna & Michael.

Author: Jeffrey Hollar
Words: 700 
E-Book: Yes


  1. Love the idea of "sissifying" a gun. I'm glad you revised it so that the rest of us could read it. :-)

  2. A gun as a bridal accessory - very fitting for in a world full of zombies! Great piece.

  3. Awesome! Yet another great story, sir.

  4. A touching moment in a collapsing world...a great piece of writing!