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A Perfect Catch

Page 3

Elizabeth Terry

That might lead to a more formal dinner when he could wear the shirt.  Vince sighed, smiled as he ironed it to perfection.

However poor Thomas’s suit was not ready. It was tailor-made in Bali at the request of Des, Laura’s father. The tailor was the first cousin of Des’s boss who had recently offered Des a significant promotion to Senior Finance Director with a salary increase of $55,000. As Des felt obliged to his boss, he convinced young Thomas that a $2,500 suit was more than reasonable, the quality exceptional and he’d get years of wear from it.

Aunt Noreen, a distant cousin of Laura’s mother Audrey, was making the wedding dress.  She resented Audrey who was tall and elegant, lived in a better suburb, and even more heartbreaking, Noreen believed Audrey stole Des from her.

Noreen remained single for years and took solace in making and consuming cupcakes to excess. When in her late 40s she met Sam, an unsuccessful salesman at the local dealership who failed to sell her a car, even when she offered to buy it. But Noreen liked Sam’s smile and, as she felt sorry for him, asked him out. Audrey’s husband Des was a far better catch than her Sam. Apart from being charismatic, Des was also a talented pianist as well as a successful financial adviser. Noreen always wanted to get even with Audrey and now that she was making Laura’s dress and had the $3,000 in full payment, Noreen hatched her plan.

After the last of many fittings Noreen decided to delay the process of attaching the 58 pearl buttons which went from the neck to just above Laura’s bottom, not an insignificant task but one she could complete within a few hours while she watched Days of Our Lives.

Audrey drove to collect the dress on the Thursday afternoon as planned. The wedding was two days later. No one was at home. She knocked numerous times, rang Noreen’s mobile and her landline, then rang Sam, drove the thirty minutes back home thinking there was confusion as to whether Noreen was personally delivering the dress. Noreen wasn’t there. Audrey drove back to Noreen’s house, rang her again, pounded on the door, called on all the neighbours. No one had seen Noreen or Sam for a couple of days.

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