|Newspaper Title||Traralgon Record (Traralgon, Vic. : 1886 - 1932)|
|Trove Title||A Christmas Wedding. A Story for Our Girls|
CHAPTER V. Oiraixats DAY;which was also Gladys's wedding day, broke bright and fair. Mrs Rivers who had set her heart on the wedding taking place from her house, had g brought Mrs Evans and Gladys to the e Parsonage the first week in December, tl and her assistance in the important inatter f, of buying the trousseau had been invalu- t] able. For the first time within her memory h Gladys did not attend the Christmas n morning service-she sat on the wide verandah at her mother's feet, her heart n filled with a strange joy that yet had a tl touch of sadness, for she knew her mother t was grieving, though silently, that they t could never more be all in all to each other. From the churzh-not 200 yards a distant-were wafted the joyous words of the dear old hymn "Hark, the Herald Angels sing, Glory to the new-born King." Leo's voice rang out loud and clear, and e a happy smile played round Gladys' lips, y and nestling close to her mother's side she sat in dreamy silence till the swelling notes of -the organ proclaimed that the service was over. The wedding was to take place at three o'clock, and then the hospitable doors of a the Parsonage were to be thrown open and n mirth and music were to be the order of the day. By half-past two the church was c overflowing with an eager crowd, for this n was an attraction greater even than "roast beef and plum pudding," and as the bridal party entered the church they were greeted with the soft strains of "The voice that breathed o'er Eden." The church was beautifully decorated, r and a couple of arches formed of Christmas I lilies and feathery ferns had been erected for the bride to pass under. The brides- s maids-Sissie Payne and little Kitty E Rivers, looked very pretty in white and pale blue, with sprays of Christmas roses. Leo, attended by Mr Smith of the Colonial Bank, awaited her at the altar, and as his eyes rested fondly on Gladys, he thanked heaven for the great gift of her love. She was looking her best-this pretty youthful t bride-as with flushed cheeks and down cast eyes she moved gracefully up the 1 church. The. ring was placed upon her I slender finger; then the wedding march pealed forth, and they were man and wife. Poor Mrs Evans sobbed audibly as Leo raised the filmy lace veil, and kissed the sweet lips of his bride, and Gladys, turn ing, threw herself into her mother's arms, unmindful of the gaping crowd, and kissed away the fast-falling tears. ". I love the old church, darling," whis pered Leo, as he walked down the aisle, his wife's hand resting on his arm. "It was here I saw you first at the decorations last Christmas Eve; do you remember, you were sitting just here (pointing to one of the old pews) and th- sunlight was stream. ing down on your golden hair." " Yes, I remember Leo." she answered softly, "and I really think I loved you from that moment." In silence they walked together ?hrough the bright summer sunshine to the Parsonage. Mrs Rivers and Sissie took the bride away to dress her in her travelling-gown, for the happy pair were going to town by the evening train, and thence to Tasmania for the honey moon. There was to be no regular dinner that night; in fact there seemed no time tothink of such a thing, for Kitty's Christ mas tree was to be lighted at half-past seven, so that Mr and Mrs Leo Wylde should be present at this important cere mony. So little gipsy tables had been brought oyt on the cool verandah and the l$wn, and afternoon tea, with the unusual additions of mince pies and plum pudding, was in full swing from five o'clock to seven. Mrs Bellow was there in gorgeous apparel of crimson velvet, looking uncommonly warm. Mrs Rivers had a; first indignantly refused to ask her, but Leo, who really felt no resentment against the old lady, had pleaded hard in her favour and won the day. Kitty was in wild delight over the tree, and, when the war candles had at last burnt themselves out, a great dish of raisins was brought in, and the excitement of snap dragon began Of course, Cora Lynn set her muslin sleeve on fire. and in the midst of the confusion the carriage was announced,
"Good-bye, Mrs Rivers," cried Gladys, " thank you for taking care of mother till we return." She strove to keep back her tears as her mother clasped her in her arms, and Leo, fearing she would break down, hurried her into the carriage. A perfect shower of old shoes and rice followed them, and Mary Bellew, spiteful to the last, exclaimed, "Well! I'm sure I don't know how she caught him !"