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[left [pic http://i.imgur.com/R9bcGpC.jpg]] With each passing minute Willow was becoming more surprised by the growing strength in Anastasia. It was as though Jobe’s proposal had finally made her see what everyone else saw within her all this time. She was even more surprised by the lack of prejudice from the woman, although Willow knew that more people were accepting than Jobe or Anastasia would expect, mostly because Jobe had been such a respectable man in business and in life.
Willow smiled towards Anastasia, showing her pride as the woman started to suggest dresses to her and brought out three options. Anastasia clearly liked the look of the lace one and Willow ran her hand over the material. [b “You would look rather beautiful in this one. Is there a way she could try it on?”] Willow asked , not knowing if it was customary to try dresses on or simply choose one and have it made for you.
[right [pic http://i.imgur.com/gb7q260.jpg]] Jobe smiled towards the tailor, especially when he started to reminisce about his father. He remember how particular he could be about a suit. He always said that you should dress what you want and Harrison Hughes wanted respect and his very presence commanded it, so did his suit.
[b “Her name is Anastasia and I do believe that it is I who is lucky to have such a lady agree to be my wife.”] With a nod of the heat the tailor started to retrieve a selection of suits, leaving Justin and Jobe alone for a moment. [b “Not all of the businesses but the ones who are important to my family and my values. This gentleman is of the finest morals and I simply won’t go anywhere else.”]
Jobe looked through the materials with Justin, agreeing that they should complement the bride with their chosen suits. [b “I like this one. It’s simple but the material looks so well put together and it will not overshadow Anastasia. What do you think?”]
[b “Well I never! Jobe Hughes getting married! Who’s the lucky girl? I remember when your father came here for his suits, he was a tricky fellow, everything had to be perfect!”] He chuckled as he looked through some of the suits. He figured it would have to be simple yet splendid for Hughes! He brought out a selection.
Justin smiled a little and looked to Jobe.
“Even the businesses know you.” He remarked and looked at the suits. Each one was very fine but not overbearing or pretentious. He looked to Jobe,
“Whatever compliments the bride, I suppose?” He chuckled slightly. Then again, Jobe and Anastasia complimented each other in every other way possible.
[i “How wonderful Mr Hughes is allowing you to marry! He’s a good man, strange, but with a heart of gold.”] The woman said as she went rummaging through some dresses and looked at Anastasia’s figure and complexion.
“Actually-“ Anastasia said and looked to Willow.
“Mr Hughes is marrying me.” She said and the woman nearly dropped her tape measure. Anastasia braced for a barrage of scoldings but it didn’t come.
[i “Well, like I said. A heart of gold. Now- you lift your head, you’ve such s pretty neck! We will need to find a dress that fits that. You would look glorious in lace, you know? What do you think? These are the latest in, very fashionable and these will look lovely on your complexion!”]
The woman brought out three dresses and Anastasia was shocked.
“Oh- these are all so grand and beautiful. The lace one is beautiful.” She said to Willow.
[left [pic http://i.imgur.com/R9bcGpC.jpg]] Willow wished that she knew where to start. If there were in modern London she knew exactly where to go to get the best dresses to make Anastasia look like a princess. She glanced at some of the shop fronts to see if any of them gave away the quality of the dressed but it seemed Anastasia saw somewhere she wanted to try.
[b “Me either but we can conquer this together. We will find you a beautiful dress and you will look amazing when you walk down that aisle.”]
Willow nodded and stepped into the shop, instantly greeted by the wonderful materials and glamour gowns. Willow listening to the way the woman spoke and wondered if there was a hint of confusion in her voice. [b “Yes. Anastasia needs a dress for her upcoming wedding. I expect that you will be able to supply us with your finest dress.”] She said as she glanced over at the woman, prepared to put down any prejudice.
[right [pic http://i.imgur.com/gb7q260.jpg]] Jobe nodded. [b “I suppose we will face some problems but nothing we cannot handle. Colour schemes are usually something the women see to. We shall just have simple suits.”]
He smiled towards the man in the shop. [b “Wonderful to see you! I was hoping that you would be able to measure us both for suits. I’m getting married at the end of this week and I will need a fine suit for the pair of us.”] He looked towards Justin and placed his hand on her shoulder. [b “This is my best man. I trust you will find him a wonderful suit.”]
Justin smiled to Willow and watched them go off before looking to Jobe.
“I’m sure everyone will be very pleased to hear you’re getting married! You’re such a popular man in these parts.” He pointed out as he looked in at the tailors.
“Men always wear suits in my time. Just plain suits. Nothing like these.” He remarked as he watched eyed all the suits.
“Do you guys do colour schemes and everything?” He asked.
[b “Ah! Mr Hughes! I haven’t seen you in a while! And what can I do for you today?”] A portly man asked as he looked to the two men.
Anastasia looked to Willow and smiled.
“Let’s go have a look. I haven’t got the first idea of where to start with these things.” It made sense given Anastasia had never really had siblings or a mother to tell her about these things.
“I think this place is the best place.” Anastasia said as she looked in the dressmakers. There were beautiful gowns, mountains of lace and silk. She stepped inside and smiled a little to the shop owner who was a kind woman.
[i “Ah! Hello, what can I do for you?”] she beamed and looked at Anastasia closely.
[i “I know you! I’ve seen you at gatherings, Mr Hughes servant girl?”] She smiled.
Anastasia looked to her and smiled,
“I was wondering if you could help with a dress.” She asked.
[left [pic http://i.imgur.com/R9bcGpC.jpg]] Willow was glad that Justine had finally voiced his feelings and that she now knew where she stood with him. It made things a lot easier and it made her appreciate having him even more. When he told her that they were stuck here she did not mind because it was him she was stuck with, but now it gave her a whole new perspective.
Anastasia and Willow were the ones waiting for the men this time and she found herself looking up at Anastasia with surprise when she suggested that she should be her maid of honour. [b “Anastasia I would love to. Thank you so much for thinking of me.”]
The rest of the journey was relatively quiet and when they arrived she offered her hand to him so she could climb out of the carriage. [b “Me? Headache…Never!”] She smiled towards him, wishing to kiss him until the next time she saw him but decided that it would be improper to do so. When they watched the men walk away she smiled towards Anastasia.
[b “Finally, I thought they would never leave.”]
[right [pic http://i.imgur.com/gb7q260.jpg]] Jobe was glad that Justin accepted. Honestly he thought that he would anyway but it meant a lot to him to have such a good friend standing by his side on his wedding day. [b “We will head to the tailor while we are in town and pick something up for the two of us, so we have something that is suitable.”]
When they arrived in town they bid goodbye to the ladies and started to head for tailors first. [b “We should get measured up for the suit first, that way we are not carrying supplies around with us for the rest of the day. I know just the place.”]
Justin smiles to Willow,
“And you always will.” He murmured and watched the girls go and get ready for their exciting day. He looked to Jobe and smiled.
“Of course! I’d be honoured!” He beamed and patted the man on the back happily. It was such an honour he wasn’t really expecting.
“This will mean I will have to dress like a proper gentleman I suppose!” He laughed as they headed out.
He helped Willow into the carriage and smiled to her. It was turning out to be an amazing day! He looked out the window as they neared town. He helped Willow out and smiled,
“I suppose we will meet you back here in a few hours. Stay out of trouble and don’t give any dressmakers a headache.” He laughed a little.
Anastasia smiled to Willow as they got settled.
“You- Well.” She paused and got her mind in order.
“I understand we may not have known each other very long but I was going to ask if you would be my maid of honour, it only seems right.” She said to Willow and glanced over at the men as they approached.
Anastasia gazed out the window of the transport before disembarking and looking around town.
“You worry far too much.” She said to Justin with a small laugh in her voice as she looked to Jobe. She knew better than to tell him to be safe, he always was and he was with Justin so nothing could go wrong.
[left [pic http://i.imgur.com/R9bcGpC.jpg]] Willow smiled towards Justin and beamed with happiness. [b “What is there not to be happy about? I have wonderful friends and we are going wedding dress shopping today!”] She said excitedly as she placed her hand on top of his and took a sip of tea before glancing up at him. [b “And I have you.”] Her voice was lowered to a whisper for the last part. It was meant only for him.
She ate rather quickly, like a child far too excited about their plans for the day. She smiled upon towards Anastasia and nodded at her accuracy and continued to eat. [b “I do not think you need to work very hard to keep Jobe interested Anastasia.”] When she finished breakfast she went to retrieve her overcoat and waited out near the carriage for everyone else to join her.
[right [pic http://i.imgur.com/gb7q260.jpg]] Jobe looked up at Anastasia, then towards Willow as she spoke. [b “That is very true.”] He smiled warmly and watched as the two women went to collect their coats. He finished his tea and cleared his throat and looked towards Justin.
[b “I wanted to ask you something.”] He said, hopefully showing that he was deadly serious about his question. [b “I know that we have not known each other for very long…but I have come to love you and Willow like family…which is why I hope that you will both stay with us permanently…but I was also wondering if you would do be the honor of becoming my best man?”]
Willow seemed in a great mood and Justin smiled a little to her.
“You’re in a very good mood.” He remarked and drank some of tea. Still wasn’t the same as coffee but he was keeping some for a special occasion. He laughed a little to Willow and shook his head. What had he done to deserve her?
He looked to Anastasia and wondered if she knew but she looked just as pleasantly surprised as everyone else.
“You must have slept well.” He remarked and looked to Jobe, having no idea what had Willow in such an amazing mood but he figured it was best not to question it and just enjoy it. There was a definite spring in her step.
Anastasia watched Willow as well and smiled,
“Perhaps She is just excited for the day.” She remarked and looked to Willow. She would find out what had her in such a good mood in time, she was sure.
“Besides, isn’t it true that women should have their mysterious ways and their secrets?” She asked them and giggled a little,
“It keeps the men interested.” She added and finished her tea before getting her overcoat and she figured this was going to be a really good day!
[left [pic http://i.imgur.com/R9bcGpC.jpg]] [b “Oh I would.”] She said with a devious smile before she said goodnight to Anastasia and Jobe. She could barely contain her excitement about the prospect of shopping for her. She knew that she would probably find herself crying at the sight of her in a beautiful white dress.
Willow looked at Justin and tutted. [b “I don’t get grumpy.”] She said as they walked towards her room and stopped outside. A smile found her lips as he pressed his against hers and she bid him goodnight. She slept liked a baby through the night and found herself waking up nice and early, dressing for a day in the town noticing that the sky was a lot clearer that morning.
She emerged into the dining room for breakfast and smiled round at the faces around the table. [b “Good morning.”] She greeted them in a voice that sounded as though it were almost singing.
[right [pic http://i.imgur.com/gb7q260.jpg]] Jobe stood there for a minute, even after Anastasia had gone into his room. He could hardly believe his luck. He shook her head as the smile refused to let go on his lips and he made his way to his own room.
At breakfast, every apart from Willow was already downstairs but she did not leave them waiting for long. He laughed at her happy disposition and raised his eyebrow. [b “I trust you slept well Willow? You seem in high spirits this morning.”] He looked to Justin, wondering how responsible he was. [b “I’m looking forward to town today.”]
Justin chuckled at Willow,
“All day? You wouldn’t!” He accused and looked to Jobe and Anastasia,
“See Willow? You’re exhausting them.” He teased before watching Anastasia and Jobe retire.
“Come in then, us as well. We can’t have you grumpy in the morning.” He pointed out as he walked her to her room and smiled at her.
He wouldn’t have minded seeing her in a wedding dress, the more he thought about it. Of course he didn’t say anything though.
“I’ll see you in the morning, nice and early.” He murmured and kissed her lips gently before going into his own room.
It was actually a nice morning, clear after the storm the night before and he was up, dressed and waiting downstairs, probably making up for his late sleep the day previous.
Anastasia looked to Jobe and smiled,
“That’s a wonderful idea.” She said when he mentioned Justin as a best man. She kissed his cheek softly,
“I will see you in the morning.” She said to him,
“Sleep well, Jobe.” She murmured and went inside her room. She was absolutely over the moon with how everything was going!
In the morning, she headed downstairs and saw Justin.
“You are up early for a change, Justin.” She teased and she was evidently excited about choosing a dress and being able to be free with Willow for a day in the town. She really enjoyed town and she didn’t feel so nervous if Justin was with Jobe, the two would look after one another well enough and she had Willow to look out for her and vice versa.
[left [pic http://i.imgur.com/R9bcGpC.jpg]] Willow calmed herself down and nodded at the suggestion of their plans for the next day. She had never been invited to go wedding dress shopping with anyone before so she had become quite excited by the prospect of is, especially since Anastasia had become so important to her.
[b “Hey, I will have you know that wedding dress shopping is very important to a lady. Anastasia has to look her best and I will personally make sure that she looks beautiful. You two can just grab supplies and hang around town while you wait for us. I might even make you wait all day with an attitude like that.”] She said with a laugh and looked over towards Jobe and Anastasia. [b “I really cannot wait. Never been to a wedding before, least of all a Victorian one! Weddings are still somewhat tradition, less religious than they are now but there are still some things we have held on to.”]
[right [pic http://i.imgur.com/gb7q260.jpg]] [b “I am always right dear.”] He said quietly as he offered her a cheeky smile before looking to Justin and Willow. [b “Strange times indeed.”] He said with a nod before rising to his feet. [b “It’s been yet another long day. I feel that the days are simply getting longer now that we have you two here…not that I mind of course. However, if we are going into town tomorrow I think it best that we rise early for breakfast so we miss the rush.”] He said as he help out his hand to Anastasia. [b “I’m going to retire now.”]
With that he led Anastasia out of the room and walked her to her chambers. [b “You are going to look beautiful in a wedding dress. I am going to ask Justin to be my best man tomorrow.”]
Justin smiled at Willow, it was such a relief to see her happy and full of laughter and he looked to Jobe.
“Oh the ladies can go dress shopping and we can see to the important things?” He laughed a little.
“Sounds like a great idea to me. We will just have to make sure Jobe doesn’t sneak a peek at Anastasia’s dress.” He added jokingly.
He looked to Willow, grinning.
“You two can get all soft over wedding plans, leave the men to deal with the important things.” He winked at her and looked to Anastasia. He was joking of course.
“I’ve heard weddings can be quite the spectacle. I’m looking forwards to the big day.” He said and nodded to them.
Anastasia nodded to Jobe,
“I think you’re right. Being here has made them out what’s important first.” She murmured to him and watched as the other two seemed in good spirits. It was a real pleasure to see them both happy and joking around.
“Well then, that’s tomorrow decided. We can all head into town tomorrow.” She said to them and watched Willow. It was the first time she had seen the girl really let go of any inhibitions since she was here and Anastasia was genuinely happy for them. She looked to Justin and raised an eyebrow,
“It’s bad luck to see the brides dress before the wedding day, even in your time?” How odd they kept on some traditions but not others.
[left [pic http://i.imgur.com/R9bcGpC.jpg]] Willow smiled against his lips as he pulled her closer to him and she allowed her arms to fall around his shoulders before he parted from her to look at her. If things had not been clear to her before, they certainly were now and her worries from that morning were now behind her. She even laughed when he told her that he was glad he would not have to share her.
Her breath caught in her throat as his finger traced her jawline and she stared into his eyes, sure that she could stand there forever, looking into them. She looked up when she felt a drop of rain and smiled. This was the first thunderstorm of the era they experienced and she happened to love the rain but Justin clearly had other ideas and rather than staying outside he took her hand and ran. A laugh erupted from her throat as she found herself in a fit of giggles as they entered the house.
[right [pic http://i.imgur.com/gb7q260.jpg]] Jobe smiled at the sight of the two and found himself wondering what it was like for them to show each other affection like that back home. It was not common here for public affection but within the ground of this house they were free to be whoever they were before, and Jobe was free to show his own affections to his wife when they were wed.
[b “Sometimes it is easier to see ion others what you cannot see in yourself. They had a lot of distractions in their world. Being here has taken them all away.”]
Jobe looked at Justin and Willow as they entered the house and he laughed as Willow’s reaction. [b “I think that would be a wonderful idea. We can get the supplies the kitchen need and you two can look for a dress. What do you think Justin?”] Knowing that was a better compromise for the man.
Justin watched her, surprised at her kiss as he caught up because his brain was still thinking about how wonderful she was.
She was already his? He smiled and placed his arms around her as he drew her closer before pulling back and looking down at her.
“Oh, good. I won’t have to share.” He remarked jokingly and kissed her forehead softly. He couldn’t be without her, it was like taking the sun from the flowers. He ran a finger down her jawline gently and felt a droplet of rain.
“Oh typical.” He smiled as he grabbed her hand and ran with her back to the house as a thunderstorm rolled in.
Anastasia smiled to him,
“And I, you.” She said to him quietly before looking to Justin and Willow.
“Willow told me that we belong together, but I’m not sure I don’t think she saw how her and Justin were always the same.” She said quietly and looked to Jobe. She’d marry him out in the rain that thundered down right that second if she could.
“That was a close call.” She said to Justin and Willow as they came in from the rain.
“We should go to town tomorrow, Willow. Perhaps you can help me choose a dress?” She asked the other woman with a smile. She was trying to keep everything as light hearted as possible so no one lingered on sadness for too long.
[left [pic http://i.imgur.com/R9bcGpC.jpg]] Willow sighed and smiled towards him as he spoke. She knew that he would never oppress her on purpose and she never intend to make him feel like that is what she meant. She giggled to herself quietly as he kissed her fingers. [b “I know. I do not expect you to be able to change the rules. I will learn to adjust.”]
She was so lucky to have found Justin within her life, and even luckier for them to have realized their affections for each other now that they were stuck here. Forced to spend time with each other without the distractions of work would be good for them.
[b “Hey, I never said you could let go.”] She said with a laugh, taking his hands once more and drawing him close so that she could kiss him in the way that he had kissed her next to the fire the night before. [b “You know that I am already yours.”] She said with a whisper as she closed the distance between them again.
[right [pic http://i.imgur.com/gb7q260.jpg]] Jobe looked at her hand on top of his and he smiled. He knew that her words were true and he would give his mother time if that is what she needed but he would not delay in marrying her for anyone. He looked up at the woman and smiled softly.
[b “I know and I love you for it.”] He said as he moved his hand to her cheek and smiled before glancing out towards Willow and Justin with a raised eyebrow. [b “Seems those two have managed to talk things through.”] He said as he gestured towards their kiss.
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