Chapter 17 - Give Me Forever - I Do

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Soon after Reverend Lai stated "Speak now or forever hold your peace," Fei and Kwan couldn't keep their eyes off of each other as they were both trying to decipher what the other was thinking and feeling at this very precise moment. However hard they tried to listen to the words being spoken by their marriage officiate, they really weren't hearing much. Perhaps the Reverend knew that beforehand and decided to keep his words few and sentences very short. For soon after the few opening sentences, the couple was totally caught off guard when Reverend Lai announced it was time to exchange their wedding vows immediately after answering the 'I do' questions.

"I, Tsui Fei, take Mo Chiu Kwan to be my wedded wife from this day forward. I will be faithful to her as a husband and build a home with her until the end of time."

Kwan smiled sweetly at her groom while looking straight into his eyes while he spoke. She had wanted to keep their vows simple, especially doing away with words that were considered taboos on their special day. Words like sickness, poverty, bad, and definitely the big dark spirited word 'death'. He knew she was smiling now because he had chided her just two days ago for having fickle-minded beliefs that was more from superstitions than from her faith in God. Knowing he was right, and that her stubbornness was based on media publicity and culture; she was willing to settle on the traditional marriage vows, the one with for better or for worst, in sickness or in health, and so on.

Fei relaxed a little bit after he was done. However, he didn't want to take his eyes off his bride's as he listened attentively to Kwan repeating her vows after the reverend. He could hear the joy in her voice and see the love in her eyes.

Over the week, Fei and Kwan had teased each other about the exchange of rings and what they should say to each other. She suggested he serenade her with a song just like he did for the proposal. Fei told her there was no way he was going to pick up a mic and sing in front of an audience again. However, he did suggest miming the entire act out, including Reverend Lai's part. Kwan gave him a snuff for that ridiculous idea. After all the joking and kidding aside, Kwan left the final decision to Fei. Though he never told her the vows he had chosen for them, he could tell at this moment how pleased she was with his choice.

Now Fei and Kwan had agreed to come up with their own vows for the ring exchange, one that was unrehearsed and spoken to each other for the first time in the ceremony

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Now Fei and Kwan had agreed to come up with their own vows for the ring exchange, one that was unrehearsed and spoken to each other for the first time in the ceremony. After taking the ring from Reverend Lai, Fei took hold of Kwan's left hand. Before he began, he gave her a quick wink that was meant for her eyes only. For he knew she would be very surprised that he had chosen to recite the song she so wanted him to serenade her with.

"With this ring I'm bound. And I promise that I will never let you down. To family, friends and God above, I swear I will be true to you, and give you my love forever."

After he secured the ring on her fourth finger, he looked into her eyes and asked in his most gentle and sincere voice Kwan had ever heard. "Kwan, will you give me forever?"

Kwan's heart was already mushed like a marshmallow, she quickly took hold of Fei's left hand to steady her heart. Then she took the ring from Reverend Lai. Being spontaneous, she responded with the chorus of the song from which Fei had so melodiously spoken his vows to her a moment ago.

"Yes, I will give you forever, to love you and to love God who created us." Kwan slipped the ring onto Fei's fourth finger and looked into his eyes. "With this ring, I swear I will be true to you, and give you my love forever."

When the vows were all said and done, Reverend Lai proceeded to gather the witnesses to come onto the stage. As the marriage papers were being signed, he could hear the audience softly mumbling in the background. The Reverend could sense everyone was anxious and wanted to see the newlywed's kiss. He could sense the congregation was thinking he had forgotten that part. And when he turned to sneak a glance at the bride and groom, he could tell they were wondering if that moment would ever come.

So, after everything was completed, the marriage license signed and sealed, Reverend Lai turned and addressed the audience. "I can see some of you might be thinking I'm in this line of work for way too long and had forgotten one of the most important parts of the wedding ceremony where the groom gets to kiss the bride! It's the main attraction for coming to a wedding, isn't it?"

The audience came alive with a thrust of lighthearted laughter. Reverend Lai continued. "I didn't forget. Just so you know, the other day when I asked Mr. Tsui when he would like to kiss the bride, he told me he would be more in a hurry to kiss his wife! I don't know, he mentioned something about losing the rings."

Kwan gave Fei a 'lover' punch on his chest and a gust of laughter swept across the congregation. Finally, Reverend Lai turned to the newlyweds. "Mr. Tsui, she is officially your wife now! So, you may kiss her now!"

With the granted permission, Fei gave his wife a gentle peck on her cheek. Some of the people in the audience shouted for a real kiss on the lips to which Fei responded cheekily. "This wedding is rated General Admission, that kind of scenes have not been approved here!"

But when the audience urged on, Fei surprised everyone,even Kwan, by grabbing her back and dipped her into a kiss. 

Cheers and applause broke out, Reverend Lai introduced the newlywed couple

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Cheers and applause broke out, Reverend Lai introduced the newlywed couple. "Ladies and gentlemen, it is my pleasure to present to you, Mr. Tsui Fei and his wife, Mrs. Tsui!"

Joy and happiness sprung forth as everyone stoodand clapped. Piano and organ musicfilled the place of worship as the newlyweds walked down the aisle as husbandand wife for the very first time.

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