Not the Perfect Wedding

Lyrical Nibble
3 min readJun 30, 2023
A forest of yellow larches, partly obscured by fog.

After the first person got shot, the wedding sort of went downhill, it’s true. But there’s some things that you just have to accept in life, you know? Sure, it wasn’t the perfect wedding my sister had been raving about all her life. She’d spent two years planning it, I kid you not. Two years! The location was disgustingly romantic: a remote pasture in the Swiss Alps, surrounded by forests of larches and pines. Everything smelled of high quality air freshener. It was October, when the larches’ green needles turn a deep, almost orangey yellow before falling off, and by some dark magic my sister had chosen the exact weekend when the colour was at its peak. Every visible mountainside shone bright yellow. The place was so peaceful that when the wiccan officiator’s droning voice finally stopped, all I could hear was the distant jingle of sheep bells.

After the first shot, of course, it was pandemonium. People screamed and hid under tables. Some ran into the woods. My sister got tangled up in her wedding dress and tumbled to the ground; the groom had to go and rescue her. One of the other people who got shot fell onto the wedding cake, which I’d had labelled with their names in Swiss chocolate, by the way. We never got to try it.

No one could see who was shooting, so we all panicked. I squatted down beside the white limo my sister had arrived in and tried to breathe. Four or five more shots rang out, but I couldn’t see if anyone had been hit because everyone was screaming. Some cousins were pointing to the left towards the trees. I started sneaking away from the limo, around the tables, facing the forest. When a figure rushed out of the trees, I did the bravest thing I had ever done: I stood straight up and waved my arms in the air. I yelled, “STOP, STOP!” The person saw me, thank god, and lowered their rifle.

Who was it? Turns out it was a shepherd who’d been chasing a wolf all day. I’m not even joking — he was crazy about his sheep. They were probably the ones who’d been lulling me to sleep during the ceremony. And you know why this actually happened? This guy was deaf as a doorknob. He had no inkling there was a wedding nearby. He didn’t hear the screams. The real riddle is where the wolf ended up — we certainly didn’t see one, but the farmer claimed he’d seen it jump out into our clearing.

A rescue helicopter arrived. Only two people ended up at the hospital, and no one died. While the paramedics were checking up on the wounded, though, my sister had a tantrum and started scratching and biting the shepherd. They couldn’t get her to stop, so she ended up in jail. Only for the night. That also wasn’t quite the wedding night she’d dreamed of, obviously. But what can I say — all the guests agree it was memorable!

--

--

Lyrical Nibble

Flash fiction to nibble on or savour, sprinkled with a dash of poetry.