Chapter   Twenty-Five

"Brian, I'll be back," VJ said, getting up from her seat at the head table. "I'm gonna go get another Coke."

"Okay," Brian said, not letting go of her hand. He'd been holding it ever since they'd arrived for the reception. "Could you get me another one, too? Pleeeeease?"

VJ smiled. "Anything for you, sweetie."

"Cool." Brian smiled up at her. "I love you."

"I love you, too. But you need to let go of my hand if you want your Coke."

Brian reluctantly let go. He kept his eye on VJ. He was so busy watching her, Brian didn't notice Leighanne was walking toward him.

"Brian, honey," Leighanne said, overly-sweet. "How about a dance?"

"I can't," Brian declined. "I'm waiting for someone. But thanks anyway."

"Come on, sweetie, please?" Leighanne gave him a puppy-dog look.

Brian couldn't hold out when anyone gave him that look, even someone he really didn't want to dance with. It's just a dance, he thought. What could happen during a dance? So Brian agreed and allowed Leighanne to lead him out onto the dance floor.

Just as they got there, a slow song started playing. Leighanne held onto him tight. Brian tried to put some space between them, but she wouldn't loosen her hold. He was starting to feel really uncomfortable and he wanted go back to his seat, but he knew Leighanne would never let him. So, he just went on dancing with her. He was so into his own world, he didn't notice the others looking at them weird.

Nick and Alisha were having the time of their lives before Alisha looked over and saw Brian dancing with Leighanne.

"What the hell is he doing?" Alisha asked. "Who is that?"

Nick looked over and saw Brian with Leighanne. "Oh wow. I didn't think he'd ever talk to her again."

"Who is that, Nick?"

"That's Leighanne Wallace. Brian started dating her last year, but he broke up with her 'cause he overheard a telephone conversation she had with one of her friends and found out she was just using him for his connections. She's an aspiring actress."

"Oh. So what's up with this now?"

"I don't know. He told me he's been talking to her again. You know, making phone calls to each other, emailing each other, things like that. I didn't really believe it, though. Anyway, she was in the 'As Long As You Love Me' video and the 'I'll Never Break Your Heart" video. She played Brian's girlfriend."

"What's so significant about that?"

"We had final say in who played our girlfriends."

"Oh." Alisha looked at them again. "I just hope this song ends before VJ sees this."

"I think she already has." Nick nodded at VJ, standing by the head table, looking like she was about to cry any second.

Alisha watched as VJ practically ran out the door, into the garden out back. She gave Nick an imploring look and Nick nodded, understanding that Alisha wanted to go talk to VJ. Nick went to the table Kevin and Alexis were sitting at, watching Nicky. Kevin asked what was up with VJ and Nick told the two of them his suspicions. Then they proceeded to watch Brian and Leighanne.


"AJ, I have to go see what's wrong?" BJ said, as she saw Alisha follow VJ out the back door.

"I already know what's wrong. Look." AJ pointed to Brian and Leighanne, dancing with practically no space between them.

BJ got angry. "I told you we shouldn't have invited her. But did you listen to me? NO! Now look what's happening."

"How did I know she was going to try to get with Brian again? He was the one who invited her, not me. Don't tell me were about to get into our first fight while being married for about four hours."

BJ let out a deep sigh. "I'm sorry, honey. I just didn't want anything to go wrong on our wedding day. I know it's not your fault. All that nervous tension just built up."

"It's okay, baby. Just go see how VJ is doing." AJ leaned over and kissed his wife. Then, BJ got up and walked out the back door, picking up her wedding gown as she went outside.

Howie and Maria came and sat with AJ, wondering what was going on 'cause they'd seen VJ, Alisha, then BJ walk out the door. AJ told them what he thought was going on and they, too, proceeded to watch Brian and Leighanne.


"VJ, are you okay?" Alisha asked her cousin.

VJ turned around and Alisha expected to see tears in her eyes, but she didn't. All she saw was anger.

"No, I'm not okay. I'm angry as HELL!! Why couldn't he just tell her to go away? Why did he even have to invite her? I don't understand."

VJ threw herself on the bench she was standing beside, and crossed her arms over her chest.

"I wish I could answer those questions for you, but I can't," Alisha said, softly. "The only person who can is Brian."

"He tells me he wants our relationship to work, he tells me he loves me, I tell him I love him, but his actions are telling me the total opposite. And you know what they say about actions speaking louder than words."

"I know that. But, VJ, maybe he was just dancing with her to be friendly? You said so yourself they could still be friends."

VJ sighed. "That was before I saw her, Ali. I mean, look at her. She's gorgeous. And I know how much she wants him. I could see it every time I caught her staring at him. A guy would be crazy not to fall for that."

"Beauty is only skin deep with her," BJ said, walking up to them. She'd heard Alisha's and VJ's last part of the conversation. "And Brian has got to be crazy for falling for her again. I know how she is, VJ. I was so shocked and amazed Brian went out with her for as long as he did. And if you got a closer look, you should see how much makeup that woman wears. Damn, you'd think she bought the whole makeup section."

VJ started laughing. "BJ, aren't you supposed to be friendly towards you guests on your wedding day?"

"It's because it is my wedding day I'm allowed to bash. I'm not the one who invited her, therefore she is not my guest." BJ smiled wickedly. Then she got serious. "But, for real, girl. Brian loves you. I know he does."

"How do you know that, BJ?" VJ looked at her cousin and her best friend helplessly. "How can you know that when I don't? Anymore."

Alisha and BJ looked at each other. "Look, I'm not supposed to tell you this," Alisha started. "But a couple days ago...."

"Let me tell her," Brian said, from a few feet away.

"Okay, Bri, go ahead," Alisha said. "Come on, BJ. Let's leave them alone to talk."

"We'll be inside if you need us," said BJ before she walked back to the reception with Alisha.

Brian watched them go, then sat down beside VJ. VJ promptly got up and walked a few feet away, her back turned to him. Brian's shoulders slumped in dispair.

"What's going on, Brian?" VJ started. "Huh? Why do you insist on rocking the boat with us?"

"I don't do it intentionally," Brian defended himself. "I invited her without thinking, I'm sorry. I didn't think it would turn out this way."

"Well, that's what you get for not thinking."

"Listen to me. You're the only woman I want to be with. I don't want anyone else. I love you too much. Sometimes it scares me 'cause I've never felt this way about anyone. But I know it's right. I told this to Leighanne a few minutes ago, right before she slapped me in front of God and everyone else, then left."

VJ kinda looked over her shoulder. "She slapped you?"

"I have a big handprint on my face to prove it." Brian smiled when he heard VJ giggle softly. "But nothing could stop me from doing what I'm about to do. Not your dad, not your brothers, and definitely not Leighanne."

VJ turned around and looked at him curiously. "What are you talking about?"

Brian walked closer to her, relieved when she didn't step back. He reached into his pocket and pulled out a small velvet box. Brian took a deep breath, then got down on one knee as VJ looked at him, wide-eyed.

"Victoria Johnson," he began. "You mean more to me than anything on this earth. I cherish you more than my own life. You're the one that makes me whole and I never want to be with anyone else, but you, for the rest of my life. Will you marry me?"

VJ stopped breathing when Brian opened the small box and a beautiful diamond ring sparkled in the moonlight. She looked at Brian.

"Are you sure this is what you want, Brian?"

"I've never been more sure of anything in my entire life. So, will you?"

VJ looked at the ring for another minute before her mind was made up. "Yes."

Brian stood up. "Really?"

"Yes. I knew that day I met you in the mall two years ago that you were special. You've become such a big part of my life, Brian. I love you so much. And nothing would make me happier than becoming your wife."

Brian let out an excited yell and grabbed VJ in a big hug. VJ wrapped her arms around him tightly, holding him as close to her as possible. When Brian let her go, he took the ring out of the box and put it on her fourth left finger. Then he gave the most passionate kiss the two had ever shared.

They walked back in, arms around each other. Everyone looked at them, wondering what happened. Brian said only three words.

"She said yes."

The whole ballroom erupted into applause. VJ was amazed at their reaction. Then Brian leaned over and said, "I told them I was going to ask you to marry me after Leighanne left. Sort of an explanation for why she slapped me."

Brian didn't get the chance to say much more 'cause AJ, BJ, Nick, Alisha, Nicky, Kevin, Alexis, Howie, and Maria came over and congratulated them, as well as a lot of the guests. It turned out that Vegas was even more lucky that night than most people would believe.

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