April 17th, 1912, The Wedding Date
Beatrice and I waited for the chapel to open and the wedding ceremony to commence in the courtyard of the Rochester Estate, I dressed in the bridesmaid attire, and Beatrice in her beautiful wedding dress.
“You look beautiful Beatrice, ” I complimented, not knowing what else to say.
“Thank you Lavinia. I only wish that he was here to see me like this, on this day,”
“What do you mean Beatrice? Sir Rochester will be in the chapel with you, seeing you like this, on this very day,”
“Oh sweet Lavinia, I do not mean Robert, I am referring to father.”
“Oh,” we stood in silence for a few moments, our dresses flowing rapidly in the wind on that cool spring morning.
“I wish that he was here to walk me down that aisle, for he released me too soon. I wisj that he got to meet Robert Rochester, my soon to be husband, and witness the account of this wedding. Just today. Do you remember Lavinia? Do you remember him at all?”
“I do. I remember tiny pieces of him, what he looked like, but nothing other than that,”
“That is alright, you were but 6 years aged when that horrible illness took him,”
“But I think that even if he was here today, maybe you wouldn’t be getting married today. I believe that the Lord puts people and takes away people in our lives for a reason. Perhaps if Papa was still alive and well, you would never have met Robert Rochester, and you wouldn’t be marrying him just because Mama needs and heir to the estate,”
“Lavinia, that man waiting in the chapel is my true love. Don’t you know me better? I would never reject to being wed for love, and I truly love this man. I love him more than I could ever love our Estate. Those were some wise words, my dear sister. Maybe you really are growing into a beautiful young Lady.”
And with that the chapel bells rang out, and we hurried to the carriage to watch Lady Beatrice Parkington’s marriage to Sir Robert Rochester.
The wedding ceremony took place in the courtyard of the chapel, in the luscious Spring blooms. Sunlight gazed upon the ceremony, to my delight.
This was what Beatrice truly wanted. And I was happy for it.
Beatrice’s best friend, Lady Edith Rosamund, was a bridesmaid with me.
I daresay that our bouquets and dresses were quite the catch, but not as much so as Beatrice’s gown.
The priest began the ceremony, and I held back my happy tears.
He spoke a whirlwind of holy scriptures, but I was focused on Beatrice’s delighted face.
Finally, he came to the end of the ceremny, my favorite part.
“Do you, Sir Robert Thomas Rochester, take this woman, Lady Beatrice Rose Parkington, as your lawfully wed wife, to have and to hold, in sickness and in health, ’till death do you part?”
“And Do you, Lady Beatrice Rose Parkington take this man, Sir Robert Thomas Rochester, as your lawfully wed husband, to have and to hold, in sickness and in health, ’till death do you part?”
“Then by the power invested within me, I now pronounce you Husband and Wife. You may now kiss the bride.”
And they kissed.