Wedding preparations were well underway as the day of celebration neared . Isabella’s family was very traditional,  influencing the events before hand. Katrina thought it very unusual that the  couple had decided to wed on a Saturday. After all  the rhyme clearly stated : Marry on a Monday for health, Tuesday for wealth, Wednesday the best day of all, Thursday for crosses, Friday for losses and Saturday no luck at all. It was a seemingly bad omen. Isabella had claimed that it was a more suitable date for Richard’s family to attend and that was that.

The wedding was going to be a fairly small affair. Her elder sister was chosen as bridesmaid and was to be dressed in a pale pink outfit chosen by Isabella’s Mother. Katrina questioned why. Surely it was accustomed for the bride to choose the gown for her bridesmaid?

Katrina helped the best she could making pretty wreaths of tissue paper flowers to decorate the church. Simple but effective. She had stored them carefully at the back of her shop to prevent them from getting damaged. The ceremony was to be at noon with a wedding breakfast 30 minutes later at Isabella’s parent’s grand home.

The night before, sleep failed to come to her as she was overflowing with excitement for Isabella however, something secretly troubled her at the back of her mind. She recalled the poignant words of Zsofika .

“If the relationship shows cracks then they have to pay”  The sharp words rang through her ears and began to trouble her slightly but she brushed them off.

******************************

Katrina grasped the metal knocker and tapped on the front door of Isabella’s house. An unknown guest showed her upstairs to Isabella’s room where the bride was anxiously starting to dress. She appeared to be hesitating and was sat in her corset and underskirt with a long untied silk dressing down which was draped over her shoulders. Her long loose blonde hair tumbled over her pale shoulders. Katrina knocked gently with her gloved hand.

“Hello, sorry to interrupt. I wanted to wish you luck.” She set her eyes to gaze at Isabella who looked paler than ever.

“Thank you”  Isabella squeaked in a tiny voice

“I really do need to start getting ready.” She managed a little smile.

Katrina nodded. “Is your sister going to be assisting you with dressing?”

Isabella paused. “She did say that she would be willing to. Although, I’m not sure where Esther is. I don’t want to be late.”

Esther was Isabella’s elder sister, they had never been particularly close. Esther was so headstrong, bossy and conceited, many feared her slightly and there was no wonder that she had not been wed yet.

“She’s very confident. Too much so I fear. She wanted me to go to London with her to purchase my dress. I wouldn’t go, I think she’s still annoyed. You’re my dress maker, you know how the outfit should hang more than anyone else. Please would you help me?” Isabella looked emotional ,her large eyes widened.

Katrina couldn’t have been more delighted. “Of course! It would be an honour!”

Katrina gently unbound all the tightly twisted rags and Isabella’s hair flowed in perfect corkscrew curls over her head like an angelic halo.

“My goodness what gorgeous hair you have, what marvelous curls!”

“Yes I am very lucky, my hair has a natural wave. The rags help to define its shape.”

Katrina pinned Isabella’s hair back into a soft bun of curls and secured it loosely at the front so that it waved gently framing Isabella’s angelic face.

“Oh it’s fantastic!” Isabella exclaimed, appreciative as ever.

Isabella’s solitary mood lifted ever so slightly. Katrina adjusted the dress. It more wonderful than ever and  enhanced Isabella’s every fine aspect. Katrina’s hands began to itch once more but she took no heed to the fact.

Isabella applied a soft blusher cream to the hues of her cheeks. Simple, but it added a youthful flush and brightened her pale complexion. She took a tiny blue broach out of a little box and attached it to herself.

“Something blue. The dress is new and the broach is also borrowed. The gloves were my Mother’s, they’re the old item. Yes that will do efficiently” She scratched her slim neck quickly. They jumped as Isabella’s door was knocked abruptly.

To be continued……

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