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Authors: Debbie Viggiano

Lipstick and Lies (65 page)

BOOK: Lipstick and Lies
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‘Look this way please,’ shouted the photographer, his voice almost drowned out by the peel of church bells.
‘The gentleman at the end!
Take a couple of steps to your right please.
Everybody smile!’

With the last group shot in the can, the crowd disbursed.
Some drifted off to the car park weaving through gravestones, heels pegging in soft grass.
Others, including myself and Edna, followed Stevie and Charlotte’s progress through the lychgate to the awaiting Rolls Royce.
The bride and groom
paused briefly to have confetti thrown over them.
An upward breeze lifted the colourful whirling flakes where they split and fire-worked outwards, raining down on the
and covering the dark shoulders of nearby morning suits.
A uniformed chauffeur materialised and
opened one door to the vintage R
stooped to climb int
o the car, but then hesitated.

straightened up and turned to the crowd gathered around her.
‘I haven’t thrown my bouquet.’
There was a sudden jostling as a bevy of beauties –
’s girlfriends no doubt – stationed themselves like cricket fielders.
‘Are you ready?’ she bellowed.

A second later the bouquet was soaring skyward, caught in a backdrop of blue as it tumbled over and over upon itself.
Hands stretched upward
, fingers reaching to catch the free-falling ball of petals and blooms – which were sailing straight toward
From nowhere my mother-in-law’s arm shot out and plucked it from the air.
Edna smiled triumphantly and waved the bouquet like a flag.
A small cheer broke out.
Arthur pushed his way forward and
round to face him
looked up at him, but Arthur suddenly
disappeared from view.
I jostled sideways and was ast
to see Arthur down on one knee.
And judging from the gobsmacked expressions around me, I wasn’t the only

‘D-Darling Edna,’ Arthur stammered, ‘we’ve been courting for several months.
My first proposal was too soon and you turned me down.
But I’m desperately hoping I’ve now truly captured your heart.
I love you Edna.
Will you marry me?’

Suddenly sound was suspended.
Even the ringing bells seemed to quieten as everybody c
ollectively held their breath.

And then Edna’s face broke into
I will
marry you Arthur!

The crowd whooped and hollered as Arthur stood up and scooped Edna into his arms,
the bouquet in the process.

Jamie pushed his way over to Arth
ur’s side and pumped his hand.

‘Congratulations,’ he laughed.
‘Does this mean I have to call you Dad?’


Five hours later, suit jackets had been discarded and ties loosened.
Disco lights flashed and music pounded out of vast speakers.
The floorboards beneath me fairly bounced from the frenetic activity of guests dancing, self-consciousness discarded along with the crates of empty champagne bottles.
I did my best to bop with Jamie but it began to get a bit farcical when he bounced off my bump for the third time.
Nell was just feet away from me and showing off her Ceroc skills with Ben.
Morag, close by, was grinding suggestively against Matt and clearly the worse for wear.
The twins within me weighed upon my bladder
and I signalled to Jamie that I needed to find the rest room.
As I headed out of the function suite and into a carpeted corridor, I realised Nell and Morag had fallen in beh
ind me.

‘God I’m blinkin’ rat-arsed,’ Nell giggled
as she swayed into the Ladies.

‘I think this is the first time I’ve ever gone to a wedding and remai
ned sober,’ I smiled ruefully.

‘Lucky you,’ Morag sighed.
‘I’d giv
e anything to be up the duff.’

We stood in a line against the washbasins, our dainty clutch bags open as we rummaged for make-up to repair shiny faces.
As Morag extracted a lipstick, something fell out of her b
ag and dropped onto the floor.

‘What’s that?’ asked Nell.

‘A pregnancy test,’ said Morag.
‘I never leave home without one these days.
That or an ov
ulation test kit,’ she sighed.

‘You must be spending a fortune,’ Nell tutted.
‘Why don’t you just forget about
d let nature take its course.’

‘Yep,’ Morag nodded.
‘I’m not buying any more.
This is my last pregnancy test.

he picked it up and waggled it about.
‘I meant to widdle on it earlier
but everything has been such a rush today I
had a chance.’

Is your period late?’ I asked.

Morag shrugged noncommittally.

My period is due today.
So far it’s a no-show

‘Well what ar
e we waiting for?’ asked Nell.

t do you mean?’ Morag frowned.

I nodded towards a cubicle.
‘Go on.
And take
your pregnancy test with you.’

Morag’s shoulders drooped.
She looked almost defeated.
‘What’s the point?
Every time I do a test
it’s negative.
There’s a part of me that wonders if
I’ll ever be pregnant again.’

‘Stop being ridiculou

Nell gave Morag a little push toward
the cubicle.
‘Now hurry up.’

Morag sighed and walked in.
‘Here, what are you doing?’ she yelped as we pushed in with her.
The loo was generous enough in size
but it was a tight squeeze
my baby bump and Morag’s chest.
‘I’m not weeing in front of you two,’ said Morag indignantly, ‘so you can both get out right

‘Payback time,’ I said firmly

ou insisted on
ng the same to me – remember?’

‘Oh all right!’ Morag rolled her eyes.
‘But the pair of you can bloomin’ well turn around.
least spare me some dignity.’

Nell and I giggled and dutifully faced the door.
There was a rustling noise
as Morag hitched up her skirt.

‘Well?’ asked Nell.

ve me a moment,’ Morag huffed.

There was a brief silence.

‘Well?’ I asked.

We turned around to see Morag, knickers at ha
lf-mast, staring at the stick.

Nell and I prompted together.

Morag looked up, her face wreathed in smiles.
‘Well, well, well.’





Stockings and Cellulite

As the clock strikes midnight on New Year's Eve, Cassandra Cherry's life takes a turn for the worse when she stumbles upon husband Stevie lying naked, except for his socks, on a coat-strewn bed with a 45-year-old divorcee called Cynthia. Suddenly single, Cass throws herself into the business of getting over Stevie with gusto. Her main problems now are making her nine-year-old twins happy, juggling a new social life with a return to work and avoiding being arrested by an infuriating policeman who always seems to turn up at the most inopportune moments. Then, just when Cass is least prepared, and much to Stevie's chagrin, she crashes head over heels in love with the last person she'd ever expected.




Flings and Arrows

Steph Garvey has been married to husband Si for 24 years.
Steph thought they were soulmates.
Until recently.
Surely one’s soulmate shouldn’t put Chelsea FC before her?
Or boycott caressing her to fondle the remote control?
Fed up, Steph uses her Tesco staff discount to buy a laptop.
Her friends all talk about Facebook.
It’s time to get networking.


Si is worried about middle-age spread and money.
Being a self-employed plumber isn’t easy in recession.
He’s also aware things aren’t right with Steph.
But Si has forgotten the art of romance.
Although these days Steph prefers cuddling her laptop to him. Then Si’s luck changes work wise.
A mate invites Si to partner up on a pub refurbishment contract.


Son Tom has finished Sixth Form.
Tom knows where he’s going regarding a career.
He’s not quite so sure where he’s going regarding women and lurches from one frantic love affair to the next.


Widowed neighbour June adores the Garveys as if her own kin.
And although 70, she’s still up for romance.
June thinks she’s struck gold when she meets salsa squeeze Harry.
He has a big house and bigger pension – key factors when you’ve survived a winter using your dog as a hot water bottle.
June is vaguely aware that she’s attracted the attention of fellow dog walker Arnold, but her eyes are firmly on Harry as ‘the catch’.


But then Cupid’s arrow misfires causing madness and mayhem.
Steph rekindles a childhood crush with Barry Hastings; Si unwittingly finds himself being seduced by barmaid Dawn; June discovers Harry is more than hot to trot; and Tom's latest strumpet impacts on all of them. Will Cupid's arrow strike again and, more importantly, strike correctly?
There's only one way to find out....





Prior to turning her attention to writing, Debbie Viggiano was, for more years than she cares to remember, a legal secretary. She lives in leafy Swanley Village in Kent with her husband, children and a food-obsessed




BOOK: Lipstick and Lies
11.55Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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