As she walked down the aisle with slow unhurried steps, I had eyes only for my beautiful Nerrissa. Of course she was the most beautiful woman in the hall, the only lady in a white dress. I had always dreamed of getting married to a tall, fair, attractive girl with an hour glass figure that would be the envy of all my friends (and boy could I see the envy in their eyes ***winks). I saw the way they all looked at her whenever she walked into a room. Nerissa’s honey coloured cat eyes would light up in excitement and I knew it was for only me. She was perfect in my eyes, had always been, from the very first time I set eyes on her a month ago. I didn’t need anybody to tell me that my dreams had finally become a reality. I seized the opportunity and approached her right away, took her home to my parents and initiated the wedding process all in two weeks.
As the Rev. Father said the wedding mass, I shook my feet impatiently, wishing that the old man would get it over with so I could take my beautiful wife home. I stole a glance at my mother-in-law. She had been so excited the first time I met her. Wait oh…was that pity I saw in her eyes just now? Instinctively I looked at my father in law. Our eyes caught and the older man quickly shifted his eyes away, looking everywhere but at my face. The same curious look was on Nerissa’s brother’s face and even her two sisters, that look of pity. Something was definitely going on. I turned to Jim, my best man who only came back from US the night before just to attend my wedding, hoping to at least see one supportive look. Ah! it was even worse. Jim had his face down and…was that a look of shame on his face? Almost everybody else looked at me with eyes of pity. It was as if I could almost hear them say, ‘oh, poor him…’.
That was the moment the Priest said ‘does anybody have any reason why these two should not be joined together in holy matrimony’. Nerissa was still smiling, looking as resplendent as ever. However that smile was wiped off her face when I raised my hands and said, ‘excuse me father’. The priest adjusted his glasses in surprise. ‘I want to ask everybody here a question but first I will ask Nerissa.’ I cleared my throat and continued ‘Is there anything I need to know before we tie the knot?’ She shrugged and looked at me in surprise.
A few moments passed and I was beginning to think I was just being paranoid when Nerissa’s uncle stood up in the crowd. ‘Let us tell this young man the truth. This is not right.’ Nerissa’s mother tried to pull him to sit down but he continued. ‘Why must we do this to such a nice young man like Joe? I have told you people that we have to find a solution for Nerissa’s problem. Joe, she is not what you think she is. She is a nymphomaniac. Ask your friend, Jim what happened last night. Almost all the other men here have a story to tell about Nerissa. It is a pity that you were in such a hurry to marry her and you didn’t ask questions first.’
I felt as though the roof had just crashed on my head. Jim had his face down in shame. He couldn’t even look at me. By now, Nerissa was not smiling anymore. Her face was contorted with rage and she rushed at her uncle, grabbed his neck and began to choke him. To my surprise, nobody could pull her away. They were screaming and begging her. It took five hefty guys to pry her hand away from her uncle who was now gasping for breath. I did the sign of the cross and quietly sneaked away. God had just delivered me from a lifetime of misery.
‘As a jewel of gold in a pig’s mouth, so is a beautiful woman that has no discretion’. Proverbs 11:22