Never walk alone - 6. Chapter 6
This chapter contains a description of man on man sex. Sensitive readers beware!
"Ryan Patrick Major, you are the love of my life. You hold my heart in your hands. You are my family, my only family now" his voice faltering slightly. "Will you marry me. Will you be my husband?"
Ryan's blue eyes stared at Andrew as if he had suddenly grown two heads. He tried to speak and all that came out was a croak. Instead he just nodded and finally whispered,
"Yes Andrew Devlin, I will marry you" and he fell into Andrew's arms hugging him fiercely.
Pandemonium reigned as the restaurant erupted in cheers and applause. Champagne miraculously appeared from somewhere and guests were shouting their congratulations
Andrew pulled away from Ryan, holding the ring, then taking Ryan's hand he slipped it onto his finger and kissed it. Ryan gazed at the ring, taking it in.
It had two bands, one gold, the other platinum. Set into the platinum band were three jewels - a diamond flanked by a sapphire and a tawny stone he thought may be a topaz but wasn't sure. The sapphire was his birthstone, he presumed the tawny one was Andrew's. Ryan looked at Andrew.
"But what about your ring? You need one too".
Andrew reached for his chocolate box and withdrew a second, matching ring, which he handed to Ryan,who took Andrew's hand and slid the ring onto his finger. He grinned at Andrew and said,
"Okay so you want me to marry you. When, with our schedule over the next couple months, do you think we can do it?"
Andrew gave him a mischievous look. Ryan's eyes widened again and he asked slightly breathlessly,
"Oh my god. Andrew Devlin, what have you done?" Andrew grinned.
"Well, I was thinking..... maybe.... tomorrow? "
"Tomorrow!," he exclaimed."You're kidding me. You do realise that if we get married tomorrow, it will be a very short marriage, because my mother will murder you, probably very slowly and painfully".
He grinned at Ryan, casting a surreptitious glance over his shoulder.
"I think your mother will be very happy for us, in fact, I'll let her tell you herself", just as he felt a finger tapping his shoulder. He turned his head to see who it was and almost fell off his chair as he came face to face with his mother. His father stood behind her grinning. He gaped at her in shocked confusion, his brain overloaded with events that were happening too quickly.
"Mom! Dad!What the hell are you doing here? How did you get here? Drew, what's going on?" realisation dawning that behind his parents were more familiar faces. His sister, Donna, laughing at his confusion, Ben and Emma Davidson, and Paul and Marie all grinning like idiots. Janice Major threw her arms around her son.
"Ry, take a deep breath, son. Slow down. Breathe"
He visibly stilled himself and took a deep breath, exhaling slowly. Janice nodded.
"Good, now.. Congratulations darling, your dad and I couldn't be happier for you and Andrew". She took his hand and stared at the ring, then looked at Andrew. "They're beautiful, but I guess not quite complete. Am I right?"
Andrew chuckled at her."Hello Mrs Major, Mr Major, it's good to see you again . Thank you for coming!" Looking at his future mother-in-law, he added, "You don't miss much do you? You are correct, the rings are not complete. The matching gold wedding bands will complete the design".
She let go of her son and turned to Andrew, giving him a hug and congratulating him.
"Well, I did study jewelry design when I was younger, so I have a bit of an advantage. And, young man, I'll have no more Mrs Major! You're about to marry my son, so it's either Janice or mom. Your choice. And I'm sure David will agree with me", glancing at her husband, who nodded and walked over to shake his hand and draw him into a hug as well.
"Definitely, congratulations and welcome to the family".
Andrew sniffed, slightly emotional, and whispered his thanks, turning to the others as they gathered around them.
"Hi guys, welcome. Thanks for being here"
Paul chuckled and said, "Well, when I get offered a free trip to Mauritius, even if it is just three days, who am I to say no. And when it's my best friend and boss who's offering because he wants to get married, there is no way I could not come. And Marie would probably have divorced me if I had turned you down".
After hugs and kisses and congratulations had been exchanged, they all sat down at the table that had been hastily enlarged by the waiters to accommodate the group and coffee was ordered while the champagne was being consumed. Ryan, still looking a little shell shocked asked, slightly indignantly,
"Will someone please tell me what is going on. How is it that you are all here?"
Janice patted to her son's arm.
"Ry dear, calm down. Okay, let me explain. Just after Christmas, Drew phoned your father and I to ask permission to marry you which was very considerate of him. We naturally gave him our blessing and he then told us that he wanted to surprise you and get married while you and he were on Mauritius and offered to fly us out for the wedding. So here we are! We flew in yesterday evening on the SAA flight from Johannesburg, and from what I gather from Ben and Emma, they all flew in on the same flight you were on. Andrew arranged accommodation for us at the resort next door, for last night, and we moved over here this afternoon".
Ryan gave Andrew a faux withering look.
"Andrew Devlin, the depths of your deviousness shock me. That' s what the spa day was for. To get me out of the way when they arrived. And why you looked like a deer caught in headlights when Pierre addressed us as Devlin-Major at the airport", he exclaimed. So you've been planning this since Christmas? How have you managed to arrange a wedding on an island, 2500 miles into the Indian Ocean, in a week?"
Andrew took his hand, running his thumb over the ring he had just recently placed on Ryan's finger.
"The plan only crystallised over Christmas. I've actually been thinking about it seriously since you came home from Europe. Then on Christmas Day, when I was upset and you were holding me, and you instinctively knew why I was upset, I knew that it was right and it was time. Then it was just a matter of a lot of emails and phone calls. You're not angry are you? I'm sorry if I have hurt your feelings. That was not my intention".
"No, I'm not angry. I guess just a little bummed that I'm getting married and have had so little to do with the arrangements"
"Oh babe, I'm really sorry. I just wanted it to be a surprise. Now that the surprise is over, I promise to involve you more. There are still a few things that need to be done that you can help me with. God, I'm sorry. I've stuffed it all up".
"No babe, you haven't. You don't have a malicious bone in your body. I just need to know what I'm in for tomorrow!"
Andrew smiled at him, still feeling a little sad. He had inadvertently hurt the one person who mattered most to him and it did not make him feel good about himself. He vowed to himself to make it up to Ryan. He glanced up at the group of slightly worried faces around him. He put on a bright smile and said,
"Okay guys, at the risk of sounding like a total control freak, here's the agenda for tomorrow.
I would like us all to meet at 8.30am for breakfast on the pool deck. I have reserved a table. After breakfast, I have arranged for the ladies to have treatments at the spa and beauty salon. Ry and I will be having our hair cut at the barber, the guys are welcome to join us if they wish. Actually, do any of you want to go to the spa with the ladies?"
"Yeah, I would" answered Paul, to hoots and derision from the older men. He grinned, looking at them.
"You two old fuddy-duddies should try it sometime. You have no idea how good you feel after a good facial and a manicure and pedicure. I often go with Marie if I have the time"
Andrew beckoned to Claude, who hurried over.
"Guys, allow me introduce Claude. He has been assigned as our butler for our stay, and let me say, his assistance has been invaluable. Claude, could you add Mr Mason to the spa list for tomorrow? I'm sure he and Mrs Mason would like to have their treatments together".
"Certainly Mr Andrew. Will there be anything else ?"
"I think, just to be on the safe side, reserve another three times at the barber"
He nodded and walked away, picking up the internal phone when he got to the desk.
"Okay, where was I? There is a clothing boutique in the lobby. I have arranged with them for you all to select whatever you require for tomorrow. It is not going to be stiff and formal. Just the opposite. Ryan and I will be barefoot. The boutique has a great range of sarongs and sun dresses, blouses etc for the ladies, and some really nice stuff for the men. Please feel free to choose what you need. They have instructions to bill our room. In fact, you should not be paying for anything. It should all be on our account"
Looking at Ryan he continued.
"We have one or two things to do, so you are free to chill at the pool or do whatever you want. The ceremony is arranged for 5.30pm on the beach in front of our villa. You'll know where when you see it. After the ceremony, snacks and drinks have been arranged at our villa, and dinner is at 8pm back on the beach. That's it. Control mode deactivated!"
Janice stood up.
"Right, okay. Drew, thanks for all the work you have put into this. Tomorrow is going to be a long day, so I think we need to get some shuteye."
Everyone stood up with murmurs of agreement. With more hugs and kisses they said their good night's and headed for bed. Last to leave were the Davidsons. Emma stopped in front of Andrew and Ryan and cupped Andrew's face between her soft hands, her eyes shining.
"I knew the first time I met you that you were special. You have a beautiful heart my boy and you give so freely of yourself". She looked at Ryan and said seriously,
"I hope you realise just how lucky you are to have his man. If I were younger, I would give you a good run for your money. You will have me to deal with, if you ever break his heart".
Ryan giggled nervously, just a little intimidated.
"Emma, you need not worry. I have every intention of growing old and grey with him. I could never intentionally hurt him. I love him too much for that".
"Good, I'm pleased to hear that."
She kissed them both on the cheek, slipped her arm through Ben's and walked serenely away. Ryan looked at Andrew, with a hint of shock in his eyes.
"Wow, she can be real scary when she wants to be. That was real momma bear mode".
"Yeah, she may be small, old and grey, but I don't think she's someone to be crossed. Dynamite comes in small packages"
They slipped their arms around one another's waists and strolled back to the villa. On the way, Ryan asked,
"What is it that we still have to do before the ceremony?"
"I want us to go to the jewellery boutique in the lobby and choose small gifts for each of them. I want to have them on the place settings at dinner".
"What are we going to wear? Or are we getting something from the boutique as well?"
"I brought our clothes from home. Claude has them at the moment for airing and ironing. He'll bring them back in the morning"
Arriving back at the villa, they turned off all the lights except for the bedside lamps and the bathroom. They undressed and put on boxer shorts and bathrobes before brushing their teeth. Ryan finished his ablutions first and when Andrew was done, he walked into the bedroom to find it unoccupied. The curtains billowed in the breeze and saw Ryan on one of the sunbeds. He walked to the patio door and stopped, softly asking,
"Ry, are you okay?"
Ryan glanced back at him and sighed.
"Yeah, I'm fine. Just a little overwhelmed right now. Everything seems to be happening so quickly, that I can't catch up".
Andrew sat down and Ryan moved so that he could stretch out next to him and clasped Ryan's hand in his.
"Ry, if you are not happy with this, we can cancel everything. I won't have a problem with that. You are what matters most, and if this is going too quickly for you, I'll stop it without thinking twice".
Ryan shook his head.
"No! No, I don't want to stop it. I want to marry you. I just need to get my head around the fact that I am getting married tomorrow. I'm scared, happy, excited and grateful all at the same time"
"Okay, let's get some rest, but if you still feel like this in the morning, we'll have to have a serious talk about postponing for a later date back home. I don't want you to feel like you are obliged to go along with it. Deal!"
"Okay, deal. But I will be fine. I love you."
Andrew muzzled his neck, making him giggle.
"And I love you, idiot"
They cuddled together on the sunbed, dappled with soft moonlight that shimmered on the ocean in front of them. Sleep claimed them.
Ryan jerked as, in the deep recesses of sleep, a dull thud woke him up, and promptly got the fright of his life as he found two large eyes staring at him from the beams of the patio. His movements woke Andrew and he muttered,
"What the hell! What's wrong?"
"Uh, I think we fell asleep and we have a visitor"
Ryan restrained him slightly when he tried to sit up.
"Don't move too quickly, just lift your eyes".
Andrew did as instructed and jumped involuntarily as he too noticed the eyes of a small black and white monkey gazing inquisitively down at them. "It must have jumped from one of the trees. The thump of it landing woke me up", explained Ryan.
As he became more alert, Andrew looked about them. The sky was just beginning to lighten and the eastern horizon held a faint pinkish hue.
"Fuck, we slept on the patio all night. We're going to be wrecks the whole day. We really have to stop doing this!"
He moved to sit up and their little visitor darted away into the trees. He rolled his shoulders and his neck.
"Actually, it doesn't feel as bad as I thought it would. How do you feel?"
"Okay, I guess. Shoulder's a bit numb where your head was all night, but other than that, surprisingly good for having spent the night on a sunbed in my bathrobe. What a way to start our wedding day!"
Andrew looked at him with barely concealed excitement.
"So you're okay with today. The whole wedding thing".
Ryan giggled and put his arms around his husband-to-be.
"Of course I'm okay with it. There was never really any question about it. I want to marry you more than anything in the world. And it will. Happen. Today".
"Thank you, my love. You don't know how much that means to me. I was so afraid that I had pissed you off by not including you in arrangements."
Ryan shook his head.
"I never was annoyed. As I said last night, just a little overwhelmed, what with your proposal, everyone suddenly appearing out of the blue, the wedding. But, I'm totally okay with it now. Right now, I just want to enjoy the beginning of a new day, at the beginning of our new lives together. We haven't seen a sunrise since we arrived, so what better day to see the sun rise. You want to join me?"
He held out his hand and when Andrew took it, he pulled him up. They grabbed some towels and walked down to beach, dropped the towels and their robes on the beach beds, and walked hand-in-hand into the warm tropical water, dipping under the surface and then emerging feeling more refreshed and awake. They immersed themselves neck deep in the water as the myriads of tiny fish swarmed around them nibbling at their fingertips and toes. Then, facing the now rapidly lightening horizon they waited and watched as the top edge of the sun peaked up over the edge of the horizon, and then all too quickly rose completely into the blue tropical sky. It was a beautiful start to the day and they could hear the island coming to life behind them. The increased birdsong in the trees, the faint sound of a motor starting and moving away, the metallic clang of a pot or pan from the resort kitchen as the chefs started the breakfast preparations.
They faced one another, their lips met and they kissed, tongues exploring. Ryan pulled away, took Andrew's face in his hands and stared into his eyes.
"Happy wedding day, my love".
Their mouths found one another again and they dipped under the water, still locked in their kiss.. When they surfaced, they broke apart, turned and waded back to the beach, not at all surprised to see Claude standing next to the beachbeds, holding two steaming mugs of coffee. Ryan grinned at him.
"At this rate, we're going to have to take you back to Cape Town when we leave", taking a mug from him and sighing appreciatively as he sipped the coffee. Andrew took his mug and giggled,
"Yeah, too right"
Claude observed them both, then said,
"If you don't mind me asking, did you gentlemen sleep on the beach last night? I noticed the bed had not been disturbed".
Andrew grinned at him.
"No Claude, not the beach. The patio. We we talking on the patio sunbed and fell asleep. We were awakened by a small monkey, jumping onto the roof, just before dawn, so we came down for a swim and to watch the sunrise"
"Ah, oui, I see. I have brought your wedding clothes back from the laundry. They are ready when you need them".
Andrew thanked him, then said,
"Claude, would you like to join us on the beach tonight for dinner? I have spoken to the general manager and he has no objections. You can slip away during the cocktail party and go change".
His eyes sparkled with moisture as he gazed at the two young men, then folding his hands on his chest, he replied, voice full of emotion.
"Gentlemen, you do me a great honour. It would be my pleasure to be with you for your dinner. Merci beaucoup", reverting to French. "Thank you very much"
"Good, that's settled then. I think we better start getting ready for breakfast", said Ryan.
They returned to the villa, where the guys both showered and dressed in board shorts, tropical print shirts and thongs, and sauntered to the pool deck for breakfast. The resort bush telegraph had been working again and their table was the centre of attention as both guests and staff stopped to wish them well. After breakfast, the ladies and Paul headed for the spa, as arranged, David and Ben left to take a stroll down the beach and back, and Andrew and Ryan had their hair cut before heading for the jewellery store. There, after some discussion they purchased diamond and coral earstuds in four different styles for the ladies, and gold and platinum cuff links for the men. The store wrapped each gift in cream wrapping and a gold bow. They then took the gifts to the event manager in her office, who would ensure that the gifts were put on the table. It was approaching lunch, so they returned to the pool deck to find everyone already gathered, the ladies having had their hair cut or coiffed and make up applied by the beauty salon.
They all had a light salad lunch, before going to their rooms for a siesta.
Andrew and Ryan walked back to the villa. The small pool on the patio was fairly shaded in the morning, so the water was cooler than that of the ocean. They stripped off their shirts and slipped into the cool water. They hooked their arms over the sides, and relaxed allowing their bodies to float up to the surface.They stayed in the water for a while, then got out of the pool, stepping out of the wet shorts and wrapped towels around their waists, before closing the bedroom curtains, leaving the doors open, and lay down on the bed and napped.
They woke up on hearing movement and soft voices from the lounge next door, splashed water into their faces, tied sarongs around their hips and left the bedroom to find Claude supervising the set up for the cocktail party. He looked up as they entered the room.
"Ah, Mr Andrew, Mr Ryan, I was about to come and wake you. The venue for the ceremony is ready. I would like you to inspect it. Follow me".
He led them onto the beach where a white gazebo stood surrounded a short distance away by a low, white picket fence stuck into the sand. The gazebo, slightly longer than it was wide, stood on a swept and levelled stretch of beach and covered a low, hard floored platform, which, in turn, had been covered with a beautiful oriental carpet. The gazebo was draped with a soft white fabric, gathered at the corner supporting poles and in the centre with cream and gold ribbon and small posies of frangipani blossoms. At the end closest to the ocean stood an archway, also draped in white, tied with the cream and gold ribbon and hung with strings of frangipani, their distinctive scent evident.
Twelve comfortable , white upholstered chairs were arranged in three rows with a wide centre aisle. On the back of each chair was a gold bow and posies of frangipani blossoms
To one side was a small table, covered in cream and gold cloth, behind which stood two more white chairs. Strings of fairy lights were hidden in the drapery and their lights glowed between the folds of the fabric.
Closer to the treeline, a smaller gazebo contained a draped table on which stood two large speakers and the sound equipment. Andrew had chosen two of their favourite pieces of music for the ceremony. One to accompany them down the aisle, the other for the walk back after the signing of the register.
Right at the point where the path from the villa opened onto the beach, was a rolled up red carpet which would be unrolled when the time came.
As they were walking around, tears ran down Andrew's face. Ryan held him close, also moved, but in control.
"It's all so beautiful. So much more than I anticipated or envisioned. My parents would have loved this. My mom especially. She loved her cream and golds."
"They are here baby, maybe not physically, but certainly they are here in spirit, watching over us."
Turning to Claude, Ryan said,
"Claude, thank you. Please pass our appreciation on to all those who were involved. It's beautiful. The resort has done a wonderful job."
"Thank you Mr Ryan, Mr Andrew, I will do so. Now, it's time you started getting ready. We must get back."
They returned to the villa and while they showered, Claude laid out their wedding clothes. Two exact matching sets. Cream cotton trousers, soft, white pirate style shirts with a cream and gold embroidered cumberbund. On the white shirts lay two gold chains, their wedding gifts to one another.
When they emerged from the bathroom, Ryan walked to the bed and studied the clothing, then started getting dressed. When he was done he walked to the full length mirror and looked at his reflection. Andrew held his breath, a little apprehensive, as Ryan as had not said a word since they came out of the bathroom.
"Wow, nice! It's cool and comfortable, but quite elegant. The fabrics are amazing, so soft. Good choice babe!"
Andrew heaved a sigh of relief, and Ryan dissolved into giggles.
"You should have seen your face. You were terrified that I wasn't going to like it", giggling hysterically again.
Andrew threw a pillow at him before starting to laugh himself.
"Fuck, you had me worried. You didn't say anything. Just put them on without a word. You look very sexy though . Like a pirate prince!"
He came and stood next to Ryan at the mirror,studying their images.
"We do look good, even if I say so myself".
There was a knock on the door and Claude peeked in.
"Ah, you are ready. You look very handsome, both of you.". He looked at the watch on his wrist.
"Now, we must go. You are already five minutes fashionably late. Time to get married gentlemen"
They turned and followed him out onto the patio, looking through the trees to where their guests waited. They also noted that a sizable crowd had gathered behind the picket fence. They waited in the shade of the trees as Claude walked to the entrance of the beach and spoke to the DJ. Then as the strains of the piece Andrew had chosen sounded from the speakers, Claude rolled out the red carpet from the end of the pathway to the entrance of the gazebo. Two waiters quickly scattered frangipani blossoms down the length of the carpet. A murmur of expectation rose from the waiting crowd.
The music Andrew had chosen was 'This is the moment', a song from the musical 'Dr Jekyl & Mr Hyde'.
As it was a relatively short walk, Claude waited a while before beaconing them forward. They linked arms, took a deep breath and stepped onto the red carpet, with a photographer clicking away as they walked.The crowd broke out in cheers and applause as they appeared and it continued all the way until they reached the archway at the front of the aisle, where a priest from a church in the village nearby waited. All the way down the aisle, their broad smiles were returned and they saw a few tears as well. They waited quietly as the song reached its crescendo and ended.
The ceremony was brief, and all too soon, the rings were being blessed and they were pronounced husband and husband, accompanied by more applause and cheers. They were led to the small side table, where they signed the marriage register, with Ryan's parents and Paul and Marie acting as witnesses.
They returned to their seats, and the priest led them back to the archway, where he closed the ceremony with the words,
"Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you Mr Andrew and Mr Ryan Devlin-Major".
They turned and grinned broadly at their guests, just as the first strains of 'You'll never walk alone', the signature song for the Liverpool Football Club, sounded from the speakers. As they emerged from the gazebo, the crowd could be heard singing to the music, and they stopped and waved to the crowd, who cheered and applauded again. It was a moment neither would forget. As they made their way down the red carpet to the villa, more frangipani blossoms were scattered over them
At the villa, a bar had been set up on the patio, with a barman in attendance, while two waiters circulated, one with champagne the other taking orders from the bar. Cold canapés has been placed on the sideboard in the dining area, on the dining table and on the wall cabinet in the lounge. Once they all had a drink, one of the waiters began circulating with hot canapés.. The photographer took them back to the beach for a short while to take a few, more formal shots, and then they came back while he snapped away around them.
They stood at the patio door observing the proceedings. It looked like all their guests had opted to visit the clothing boutique. With the exception of Emma Davidson who wore a long, flowing sundress in a sunny yellow with a tropical print scarf around her waist, all the ladies had gone for sarongs. Donna chose to wear hers fairly short in a halter neck style, tied around her neck. She had accessorised with gold sandals and coral bangles. Janice and Marie wore their sarongs long, tied at the waist, and loose print blouses, both barefoot and wearing pendant necklaces, Janice in coral and Marie, one which Andrew knew Paul had given her for their latest anniversary.
The men all wore tropical print shirts, Paul's open to the waist to show his toned, almost smooth chest, which he teamed with a long sarong. Andrew idly noted that he obviously spent some quality time at the gym in his spare time. David and Ben wore knee-length shorts and sandals.
Glancing around, Andrew noticed that Claude was nowhere in sight and he smiled in satisfaction that he had obviously slipped away to freshen up and change before joining them for dinner. They mingled with their guests chatting and laughing, just having a good time. At some stage, Ryan nudged him and Andrew followed the direction of his gaze. Claude was back, dressed in long beige chinos, white mandarin collar shirt and moccasins. He looked very different to the Claude they knew. He grinned and bowed his head when he noticed them looking, and gave a little wave. They also noticed that two chefs had taken up station in the kitchenette with ingredients and equipment.
They slipped into the bedroom to freshen up and once done, moved back out just a Claude announced dinner.
A pathway, lined with fairy lights, stretched from the villa, down the path to the beach, and the length of the red carpet. Reaching the beginning of the red carpet, there was a collection of gasps as they took in the scene before them. The resort staff had performed yet another miracle transformation.
The basic structure of the gazebo had remained essentially the same, the only difference being four flaming torches at the four points of the guy-ropes securing the corner poles of the gazebo. The difference to the interior was what caught the eye.
The oriental carpet had been replaced with a thick cream, rug that covered the front two thirds of the gazebo, leaving the polished parquet at the rear open for dancing. A large round table was centred on the rug with ten upholstered chairs arranged around it. A small, beautiful crystal chandelier hung over the middle of the table on a brass chain attached to the main roof support of the gazebo.
The table was covered in a cream damask linen cloth that fell to the floor and a low arrangement of orchids, frangipani blossoms, baby's breath and island fern formed a centrepiece in the middle of which stood a brass candlelamp. Each place setting had white bone china crockery, gold plated cutlery, crystal glassware, individual salt and pepper shakers and a cream linen serviette fan embroidered with gold thread. A small box in cream wrapping with a small gold bow was placed in the centre of the setting. Each box had the name of the guest on it in gold calligraphy. A small draped table stood empty in one corner.
The setting was exquisite and there were oohs and aaahed all round. It was sophisticated, sumptuous,dazzling, but above all, elegant. To Andrew and Ryan it was perfect.
The waiters showed each guest to their place setting, pulling out chairs and placing serviettes on laps. Bar orders were taken, and the wine and champagne that Andrew had arranged was poured. Bread baskets were placed on the table. Once everyone had a drink and they had chatted for a while, specially printed menus were handed to each guest.
Celebration Dinner for the Marriage of
Andrew and Ryan Devlin-Major
Paradise Beach Resort, Mauritius
Served with Cognac, Cream and diced Lobster Tail
South African Biltong Salad
Air dried Kudu biltong, with Balsamic Beetroot, Mozzarella &White Grapes
Smoked Salmon Terrine
With Smoked Salmon Rosettes, Horseradish and Capers
Grilled Tenderloin Steak on a bed of Carrot Mash, topped with Mushroom
Terrine, Puff Pastry lid and Balsamic Jus.
Deboned and served with Island Pineapple and Rum Sauce,
Roast Potatoes and Medley of Baby Vegetables
Grilled Mauritian Mahi Mahi
Served with a Lemony Hollandaise Sauce, Buttered
Potatoes, Green Pea Puree and Roasted Cherry Tomatoes
Marriage in Chocolate
Dark Chocolate Mousse, White Chocolate Icecream with Pistachios
and Milk Chocolate Fondant with edible Gold Leaf
Poached whole in Sweet White Wine, Honey and Vanilla
Served on crisp Shortbread with Creme Anglaise.
Once they had all placed their orders, it was time for the speeches to allow the party to enjoy the meal uninterrupted. Ryan was first to go. He stood up and looked down at Andrew
"Drew, my love. Thank you for asking me to marry you and be your husband. Thank you for putting your faith and trust in me. Today, I believe our destiny was fulfilled, because somewhere in the vast plan of the universe, you and I were destined to be together, to be one. The day I saw you for the first time, I knew in my heart that somewhere, somehow we would be together. I didn't understand the feeling then, sometimes I don't understand the feeling now , but I do understand that I love you with all of my being. Our meeting was not just a meeting of two people and two hearts, but a meeting of two souls as well. We have gone from best mates to flat mates to bed mates to finally soul mates. I promise that I will love you, adore you, cherish you and support you in everything we do, and look forward to a long, long future with you at my side. And if I say anymore, I'm going to cry, so I'll stop there. Thank you all for being here to share this wonderful time with us. I love you all"
He sat down to hearty applause and Andrew kissed him on the side of his head before standing up. He looked around the table at each of them, gathering this thoughts, then cleared his throat and said softly
"God, I should have gone first. This is going to be so much harder than I thought".
After some encouragement from the table he continued.
"Ryan, Ry, babe, today I stand here complete, because by becoming my husband today, you completed me. Know, with no doubt, that I love you more than life itself. I too believe that we were always destined to be together. Our relationship has had to weather some tough, dark times. Europe, my parents. But through it all, we pushed through, leaning on one another for support. Especially me, after my parents passed away. You and your love and support kept me going. Our Skype talks were lights in a very dark tunnel for me then. My family had been ripped away from me", he faltered, battling with his emotions, "and for a time I wasn't sure if I could carry on. And then on my last trip to visit you in Europe, on the Greek Islands, you gave me hope. I knew with absolute certainty that I loved you and that you loved me, and I knew then, that I still had family because I had you. And that was where the plan for today was born. Over time, I have found my new family growing". He looked at the table. "Dad, mom and Donna, my new mom and dad and little sister, you have always encouraged our relationship. I know it was hard in the beginning, but you have been pillars of support. Paul and Marie, I love you both to death. Your care and concern was often a lifeline. Then the people, I consider to be the newest members of my new family. Ben and Emma. We've only known one another for a short time, but you both hold a special place in my heart. And finally, Claude who we met just three days ago and has come to mean so much to not only me, but Ry as well. We will either have to make a plan to get you to Cape Town, or Mauritius is going to be seeing a lot more of us.
Thank you all for your influence in our lives. Knowing each one of you is an honour and a privelege. To finish off, because I can see food on the way, Ry, thank you for agreeing to be my husband and I cannot wait to see what the future holds for us. This is our moment, this is our time and we will never walk alone because we have each other and family. I love you".
He sat down to applause and David stood up, raised his champagne glass and said,
"To Andrew and Ryan, a long life and much happiness".
They toasted the couple and broke into a slightly off-key rendition of 'For they are jolly good fellows'. and then the waiters were lowering plates onto the table and dinner started in earnest.
It was a convivial occasion with much laughter, good food and good wine with everyone using the dance floor as well.
Just as coffee was about to be served, there was a roll of drums and a chef in immaculate whites carried in a small, but beautifully decorated three tier cake, set it down on the side table and invited the bridal couple to cut it with a silver knife engraved with their names and date, a gift from the resort. Once they had completed the ritual, the chef then cut slices from the bottom tier and these were served to the table with the coffee. He carefully removed the top tier and placed it in front of Andrew and Ryan for them to keep for their first anniversary.
With coffee served, fireworks began exploding from a small raft floating on the lagoon. Rockets shot up into the inky sky and burst in showers of, predominantly , white and gold stars, but interspersed with red, blue and green. There were more oohs and aahs from the gazebo and surprisingly, from the darkness around the venue. The bush telegraph at been at work again! When the fireworks ended, a grinning Ryan looked at Andrew and enquired,
"Are there any more surprises you have up your sleeve, babe?"
Andrew threw his head back and laughed.
"That's it for out here. The rest you'll have to wait for until we're alone,", he replied wiggling his eyebrows.
"Which I think is as good a time as any to wrap this puppy up and get some rest", suggested David."It's been a long, tumultuous day and these old bones of mine are feeling the pace. Boys, it has been fantastic! Thank you ".
Everyone rose from the table, and after more hugs and kisses and good wishes the guests walked back down the red carpet to where four golf carts waited to drive them back to their rooms on the other side of the resort.
The wedding was over, they were one.
Thanking the staff and wishing them good night, and carefully carrying the small top tier of the cake, they walked arm in arm down the red carpet to their room. Claude stood at the end of the carpet waiting. When they reached him, Andrew smiled at him, placing his hand on Claude arm.
"I meant every word in my speech. In a very short time, you have become very special to both of us."
He nodded his head, eyes brimming.
"Thank you for your kind words. And thank you for my gift"
"You're welcome. It is just something small to express our appreciation for your help"
"But it means much to a lonely old man"
Andrew instinctively reached out and hugged him.
"Your body may be old, but your heart is strong and full of life. Now, I happen to know that tomorrow is supposed to be your day off. We do not want to see you near the resort. You take your day off and we will see you on Monday morning. We will somehow find a way to survive without you for one day" he said, grinning at the man "It will be tough, but survive we will. Now go, enjoy your day off".
Ryan nodded in agreement.
"Andrew's right. You need to take your days off. Enjoy it and we will see you on Monday"
"Merci, mes amis, thank you my friends. Very well, I will do as you say." and he turned and walked slowly away into the darkness.
Arriving at the villa, the hotel elves had been busy again. All the lights were off, the only illumination provided by tee lights lining the edge of the patio, and several glass covered candlelamps in the bedroom and bathroom. The lounge patio doors were closed, so they went directly into the bedroom where Ryan suddenly grabbed Andrew, lifted him off the ground and spun around, whooping exuberantly. Andrew was laughing at his antics, gripping tightly onto his shoulders as he spun around. Ryan set Andrew down, slightly dizzy, and held him tightly.
"Fuck, we're married. I cannot believe we are actually married. Babe, I can't explain it, but something has changed - inside of me - It just seems different. I felt it the moment the minister pronounced us husbands."
Andrew smiled at him, nodding
"So you felt it too. I like to believe it was out hearts and souls becoming one"
Their lips touched and they kissed softly, then with a moan they mashed their mouths together, lips parting and tongues exploring. Ryan broke away breathless holding his hand up.
"I need you to make love to me. But, I also need a shower ".
Andrew started in buttoning his shirt.
"Well then, how about we do both at the same time", sliding Ryan's shirt off his shoulders. Ryan's eyes
"You see, I can't think straight when you're around. Why didn't I think of that?"
"Because, my darling husband, I am the clever, practical one. You are just the sex fiend".
Ryan grabbed his hand in one of his, the other attempting to undo the top button go his trousers.
"Bathroom! Now! ", he ordered.
They moved toward the bathroom, shedding clothing along the way, almost falling as they tried to remove their trousers while still moving. They stumbled into the bathroom, hanging on to one another and laughing at the same time. Andrew stared at Ryan's naked body as realisation dawned.
"You got to be kidding me. You've been commando the whole evening". Ryan chortled,
"Yeah, didn't want to feel all hot and sweaty and uncomfortable with underpants on. I took them off when I was freshening up after the ceremony. Who's the practical one now?" Andrew punched him on the shoulder.
"Okay, smartass, get the shower going".
Ryan stepped into the shower and turned on the taps adjusting the temperature so that the water was refreshing as opposed to warm. Andrew joined him and they stood close together under the rain shower allowing the cool water to refresh them. Their bodies merged again, at mouth and groin, and they ground together, caressing and moaning softly. Ryan pushed Andrew against the tiles, turning on the nozzles that surrounded the shower. Jets of water cascaded over them from every angle. He felt Andrew's hard erection rubbing against his own and he moaned into Andrew's mouth. He broke the kiss and whispered,
"Babe, I really need to feel you inside me" and braced his hands against the wall. Looking over his shoulder, he continued,
"Make love to me. Make me your husband".
Andrew moved up behind him and lay against him, kissing and nipping his back and shoulders , sliding
his manhood over the cleft of Ryan's butt. He slid his hand around Ryan and caressed his chest, running his hands over the soft fur and his thumbs over the rubbery nubs of his nipples. Ryan grunted and pushed back against Andrew causing his erection to slide into his butt crack. Andrew ground into him, both panting and breathless!.
Reaching for the body wash, he liberally poured some between them until they were both slick. He positioned his member against the entrance to Ryan's body and pushed gently feeling the resistance. He poured some more body wash over Ryan's crack. He sensed Ryan relax and his manhood slid through the entrance to his husbands body. Ryan grunted and sighed a long, "Aaaaahhh", then pushed back again to fully engulf Andrew's rock hard member. They stilled, allowing Ryan to adjust to the intrusion, then slowly, Andrew withdrew and the pushed in again, beginning to set up an easy rythym. Ryan turned his head and Andrew leaned forward to kiss him, all the while, thrusting in and out of his butt. He reached round and stroked Ryan's hard, slick hard on, eliciting a groan and a shudder from Ryan. Realising that Ryan was very turned on, and close to release, he speeded up his thrusts, ramming in and out until he too felt the pressure building. Gripping Ryan's cock with one hand and sliding it up and down he braced the other on the wall next to Ryan and buried his cock in Ryan's hole. His erupted, spraying his insides with cum. Ryan's cock spewed seconds later, coating the tile wall with his seed. Andrew collapsed onto Ryan's back, both breathing heavily.
When they had recovered a little, Andrew withdrew gently, and turned Ryan around, taking him into his arms and softly kissing him. Ryan held Andrew's head between his hands and stared at him intently.
"Fuck, where did that come from? It was amazing! If I had known that post-marriage sex was that good, I would have married you a long time ago"
Andrew grinned at him."Well you were not to shabby yourself, lover"
"Not too shabby! Not too shabby! I'll show you what not too shabby means! But not right now. I need to gather my wits and my strength, before I show you what not too shabby is!"
Andrew dissolved into laughter.
"Promises, promises. But I can wait! Let's get cleaned up and get some sleep".
They took turns, gently washing each other from top of head, to tips of toes. They stood side by side, still wet and naked, and brushed their teeth, before padding back into the bedroom. They moved around, extinguishing the candles and secured the patio door, but leaving the windows slightly open before crawling onto the bed. They cuddled for a while, then with Ryan on his back and Andrew's head on his chest they fell into an exhausted sleep.
They were woken up by a crack of lightning, striking somewhere close, followed almost immediately by the rumble of thunder. Rain pattered on the roof and in the trees, increasing in intensity by the second. The curtains were whipping around in the strong wind as the morning storm blew in from the sea. Another flash of lightning and rumble of thunder and the skies opened, sending down a deluge of water that drummed on the roof of the villa. Ryan got up, closed the windows and cranked up the air conditioning, then returned to Andrew on the bed, glancing at his Tag Heuer, saw that it was just after 6.15am. They lay for a while, cuddling and listening to the tropical rain drumming on the roof. Ryan rolled over, laying between Andrew's spread legs and laid his head on his chest, hearing and feeling his heartbeat. Then, resting his chin on Andrew's chest he peered up at him impishly. Andrew cocked his eyebrows and asked,
"What? Say what you want to say"
"Well", tracing a finger around one of Andrew's nipples, making him squirm, and his cock to twitch against him, "If I remember correctly, someone was saying something about being 'not too shabby' last night".
Andrew looked at him quizzically.
"And so, what are you going to do about it?" and then dissolved into hysterical giggles and thrashing around as Ryan started tickling him. Pushing at Ryan's shoulders, he gasped,
"Okay, okay! Please stop.".
He drew in a deep breath when Ryan fingers stopped tickling, his eyes suddenly smouldering. He stroked Ryan's face and shoulders, his fingertips tracing along his forehead, over his nose and lips and along the line of his collarbones, softly caressing the dark gold fur that feathered over them.
Andrew chewed on his bottom lip as Ryan's finger circled his tits again and gazed at him intensely.
"God, you are so beautiful, Ry. It feels so sureel to know that you are my husband and that I am lucky enough to spend the rest of my life with you. I am humbled, and yet, proud at the same time".
He flinched as more lightning and thunder crashed above them.
It was not long before the storm raging outside, was being matched by the storm raging in the bedroom. Andrew writhed, drenched in sweat, gasping for breath as Ryan stroked, caressed, licked and finally sucked him. His fingers stroked and gently probed Andrew's hole, slick with lube and sweat. He pulled Ryan up and rolled him onto his back, straddled him, and sank down on his steely cock, throwing back his head and groaning as he did so,
"Fuck, babe, you feel so much bigger".
He rose up on his knees then sank down again riding Ryan's manhood, taking it deep in his butt, before rising until just the tip was still in him, then burying it again inside him. He set up a steady cadence, gripping his own cock and jacking it. He rose up slightly and stopped moving and Ryan took up the rythym, rolling his hips and sliding in and out of Andrew, who gazed down at him with glazed eyes.
"I love it when we fuck like this. I love watching your six pack work as you fuck me. Sooo hot! ", running his fingers through the sweat - soaked fur on Ryan's belly, feeling the hard muscle beneath soft skin. He braced his hands on the headboard, meeting
Ryan's thrusts, their bodies slapping wetly together, then, as he felt the pressure building, he lay on Ryan's chest, gripping his shoulders and rode his cock.
"I'm gonna cum Ry, I'm close", his own throbbing cock sliding in sweat and pre-cum over Ryan's stomach. His body stiffened and he grunted as he came, the muscles around his hole clenching and sending Ryan over the top as well. Hot juices flooded into his insides and sticky warmth oozed between them.
They lay as if boneless, panting, sweat coating their bodies, beginning to cool in the air conditioning. They drifted into sleep, waking up just five minutes later, aware now of the cool air on their skin. They kissed languidly for a while, faintly aware that the rain seemed to be abating, then got up and stepped int o the shower where the ritual of the previous night was repeated.
Returning to the bedroom, Andrew opened the patio door and peered out. The rain had stopped and the wind was almost down to its usual breeze. The dark clouds had passed over, leaving blue skies with just a few wispy clouds. The air smelled clean and everything looked washed and fresh. He grinned as he thought,
"Just like us".
The only drawback of the brief tropical storm was the marked increase in humidity. It seemed to wash in like a wall if moisture that you could almost cut through. He stepped out onto the patio, grimacing in the humid air, but breathed in deeply nevertheless.
Ryan came out and put his arms around him, resting his chin on his shoulder. The beach in front of the villa was pristine. The wind and the rain had removed any sign of the festivities of the night before.Ryan whispered,
"I am starved. Can we go for breakfast?". Andrew nodded,
"Hmmm, me too. I think that's what hot sex does to you".
They dressed in shorts, vests and thongs and walked hand in hand to the breakfast room. There they found all the Majors and Paul and Marie. Janice was the first to see them approaching and jumped up to meet them.
"Morning my darlings, come join us. Sit"
The sat down after circling the table to greet everyone. Janice looked at them.
"Well, you two seem well rested. How do you feel? Did you sleep well?"
Donna sniggered from across the table, giving them an odd look. Ryan looked at her and queried
"What, sis,why the look?"
"Oh, it's nothing. Just that I know freshly fucked faces when I see them", at which Paul and Marie erupted into hysterical laughter, Paul spewing fruit juice in the process. Janice was scandalised.
"Donna, your language! We're in a public place" glaring at the table who were all now giggling, mainly
at the boys embarrassed faces.
"Thanks for that sis, just announce it to the whole world! And how is it you are so knowledgeable on freshly fucked faces anyway? Speaking from experience?"
"Will you two behave yourselves!", Janice hissed.
"I'm cool" shrugged Ryan, "Just asking?"
"Ry", Janice said and threw him a warning look.
Paul and Marie, still giggling, wiped their eyes with their serviettes. At Marie's muttered, "Freshly fucked faces", they both lost it again, tears of mirth running down their cheeks. Andrew glared at them saying,
"Remember, paybacks a bitch"..
When relative calm had been restored, they got up and walked to the buffet to get some fruit, yogurt and juice.
After a very leisurely breakfast, they all decided to take a stroll down the beach. Ben and Emma had not yet put in an appearence, and when Janice contacted their room, was told they had ordered breakfast in the room and were taking it easy.
The walk along the beach was a leisurely one and upon arriving at the far end, which was a good two kilometres, they discovered they could be driven back to the resort by powerboat which they did. It was just after noon when they arrived back, deciding to go to the boys villa and relax there, making use of the private pool and hot tub. Andrew contacted the Davidsons who agreed to come down to the villa, and Andrew arranged for a golf cart to pick them up and drive them across the resort to the villa. Ryan placed an order for eight different pizzas to be delivered to the room, along with extra soft drinks, beer and wine.
And so the afternoon was spent with family, relaxing, talking up a storm and eventually just chilling and enjoying the company. Mid afternoon found the main bedroom occupied by Janice and Emma who dozed on the bed, with David and Ben on the bedroom patio sunbeds. Paul and Marie were in the hot tub, while the boys and Donna, wallowed in the pool. It might have been a perfectly normal casual Sunday afternoon family get together, if it weren't for the palm trees and the beach and ocean. But it was the perfect way to spend the day after all the excitement of the day before.
As the sun started dipping toward the horizon, everyone returned to their rooms to freshen up and dress for dinner, with only the buffet restaurant being open on a Sunday evening. It was the same room where breakfast was served. so Andrew reserved a table for them out on the pool deck. Although the room was air-conditioned, being open to the elements meant that it was never really cool, so the open pool deck was the better option.
It was another convivial affair, with veiled innuendo about faces, accompanied by gales of hysterical laughter, good food, good company, and Janice casting daggers across the table when things threatened to get out of hand. But it was all good natured fun and they thoroughly enjoyed themselves. After dinner, they sat in one of the bars, drinking coffee, sipping liqueurs and cognac, and listening to a musician on his guitar.and eventually they retired to bed fairly early at 10pm.
On the walk back to the villa, Andrew found himself in a strange mood. Ryan picked up on it and asked,
"What's wrong? There's something bugging you".
"I don't really know. Maybe it's just reaction from all the activity of the past few days.. It's also been great having everyone here, and I'm sad that they are leaving tomorrow but at the same time I'm glad they're leaving, so I can have you to myself. Is that very selfish?"
"No, I don't think so! We are now officially on honeymoon. They came, enjoyed the wedding, and now they have to leave, just like any other wedding. And the bridal couple are entitled to time on their own. That's just how it works. So no, It's not selfish at. In fact, you have gone above and beyond to have themhere. And I also want you to myself".
The following morning, Claude brought them coffee in bed and they were happy to see him, They showered and dressed and even after the discussion on the way to the villa, they joined the family with heavy hearts.
Today they were heading home. They would all depart the resort together at 1.30pm with the Davidsons and Masons Air Mauritius flight to Cape Town departing at 5pm and the Majors SAA flight to Johannesburg leaving thirty minutes later. All in all, with four to four and a half hours being added to their day, it was going to be another long one.
Breakfast was enjoyable, but slightly subdued and they lingered until long after the breakfast service was over , but eventually the time came for them to finish packing and prepare for the long drive to the airport, arranging to meet in the lobby at 1.15pm. Goodbyes are never easy, more so for the Majors as they were in Johannesburg . For the Cape Town crew, it was easier, because they would soon see the couple again. There were tears and hugs and kisses and thank you's as they boarded the bus for the ninety minute drive to the airport and much waving as it drove away. Ryan drew in a deep breath and exhaled.
"Ah, peace and quiet!"
Andrew looked at him and just shook his head muttering,
"You are terrible".
They spent a short time with the GM and the event planner thanking them for all that they had accomplished, and leaving a gratuity with them for the staff involved.
The week passed far too quickly. They took a day tour to Port Louis, the capital city, visiting the local markets, the fort, a diamond exchange and a rug weaving company, where Andrew purchased three large rugs. One for the lodge and the other two for the lounge and main bedroom at the apartment. They would be air freighted to Cape Town the following day and delivered to the lodge. Andrew advised Paul of their imminent arrival.
They also did a catamaran sunset cruise and cruised in pedalo boats, small pedal powered catamarans, on the lagoon in front of the resort. They went skiing and parasailing twice, and scuba diving along the inner side of the reef. They dined at all the restaurants on the resort and enjoyed a beach barbecue as well. On their penultimate night, they ordered a cab and had dinner at a restaurant in the nearby town, recommended by Claude , specialising in Mauritian cuisine, a mixture of French, Creole, Indian and Chinese. It was spicy, hot, and very tasty. They enjoyed it thoroughly.
Finally at 1pm on the Saturday, a week after the wedding, the time came to say goodbye to Claude and the resort and go back home. After asking what they wanted to wear on the flight home, Claude packed everything else, all neatly folded or rolled. He was very subdued as he moved about the villa, ensuring that nothing had been left behind.
They had breakfast at the villa, inviting Claude to join them and sat chatting with him after breakfast, discovering that he was divorced, having admitted to his wife that he was bisexual and had since made his work his life. He lived in a cottage in town and had a dachshund as a pet. And he was fifty-five years old.
They in turn told him how they had met, about Europe, Andrew's parents, the lodge and the yacht.
When it was time for them to leave, there were tears all round. Andrew took Claude's hands between his and looked into his eyes.
"I will find a way to bring you to Cape Town. Your talents are wasted here. Give me week or two to see what I can arrange, and I will be in touch. You have all my contact details and Ryan's, and we have yours. If you need anything, please do not hesitate to contact one of us. Understood? "
He nodded sadly, eyes wet with unshed tears.
"Thank you, I will. You are a good man. You too, Mr Ryan. Don't worry too much about an old man. I will be fine. I am just so happy to have been able to spend time with you and to be of service to you".
Andrew looked at him earnestly.
"You may be old in years, but you are certainly not old in spirit. You still have many good years in you, and if I have anything to do with it, those years will be in Cape Town. Just give us some time to work something out. Okay "
He nodded again. "Yes Mr Andrew. Thank you"
The doorbell chimed, announcing the arrival of the porter with the golf cart to take them to the main building.
They had already checked out, with the resort having Andrew's credit card details for any incidental charges that may not have come through yet, with regard to the wedding. They would say Bon Voyage here at the villa. Andrew wasn't sure he would be able to keep it all together if Claude went to the lobby with them.
Claude helped the porter load the luggage, making a huge effort to control his emotions., then reached out to shake their hands, his own hand trembling. Ryan gripped his hand then pulled him into an embrace.
"You are a beautiful, very special man. Have faith. Be strong. If anyone can do something to help you, Andrew can"
He nodded and stepped back, turning to Andrew who also hugged him.
"You will hear from me, I promise "
He looked at Andrew sadly and smiled.
"Thank you, Mr Andrew. I will wait for your call"
Andrew pressed an envelope into this hand
"This is for you. Thank you"
Andrew and Ryan turned to board the golf cart and Claude turned away to gaze out of the patio doors and out to sea.. They drove along the path away from the villa. Andrew turned to look back and the last thing he saw before the villa vanished from view was Claude's tear - streaked face and his hand raised in farewell.
Andrew rested his forehead on Ryan's shoulder. He sniffed saying,
"I feel like we're abandoning him. I get the feeling he has been here before and has been disappointed. If it is the last thing I do, I will find a place for him in Cape Town"
The limousine was waiting when they arrived in the lobby. It was immediately loaded and they stepped in and sat down. Pierre was once again their driver, and he greeted them cordially, congratulating them on their marriage. The porter closed the door, the motor purred into life and they moved down the driveway to the main gate They did not see a stately gentleman, dressed in a butlers suit, gazing at the vehicle as it drove past, tears on his face, one hand waving goodbye, the other clutching a thousand dollars to his chest.
The emotional farewell with Claude had left both of them upset and drained. Sensitive to their mood, Pierre raised the privacy screen and turned on some soothing music, which helped to relax them both and they napped almost all the way to the airport, waking when they hit some traffic and a horn blared next to the vehicle.
Pierre dropped them at international departures and they walked to the Air Mauritius business class counter in the terminal, which was quite busy as the Emirates A380 flight to Dubai was also checking in. After a short wait, they were beaconed to an empty counter checked in and given boarding passes, security priority, and lounge access.
Security and immigration were a quickly accomplished and they went to the business class lounge which was packed, once again due to the Emirates flight. They had something cold to drink, but it was stuffy and very noisy in the room, so they left and browsed through the duty free shops until the flight was called. They were among the first to board, sitting in the same seats they had on the flight out. The cabin was busier with only a handful of seats open and all the window seats occupied.
The usual scented towels and champagne or fruit juice was offered. Menus were available, this time a full dinner in place of the light dinner that had been served on the flight from Cape Town. They pushed back slightly early and the safety briefing began and they were stunned to hear,
"Ladies and gentlemen, we would like to welcome you aboard Air Mauritius, flight 439, to Cape Town, South Africa. We would also like to issue a special welcome to Messrs Andrew and Ryan Devlin-Major and congratulate them on their recent marriage at the Paradise Island Resort, here on Mauritius".
The briefing continued as normal while the engines growled into life, they proceeded to the end of the runway and took off, flying over the east coast out to sea, before banking southwest heading for Cape Town. The flight proceeded as normal, with the dinner service and beverages and they watched a movie to pass the time.
And then they were one.
If anyone is interested in any recipes for any meals mentioned, feel free to ask.
Any comments, good or bad, will be gratefully received.
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