Navigating the temple confused Yanyu. Long red corridors with golden doors. Yanyu felt out of place with her tattered clothes, she didn't know what sort of wedding it would be, but it would be perfect because she's marrying Chang-Hoon. She stopped at the marble staircase. "Where are we suppose to be going?"
Chang-Hoon shrugged his shoulders, leaning into a sign. "I'm not sure. You'd think there'd be a lift here with all these floors."
"The priest said top floor," Fan said.
Yanyu seethed. "We really have to go all the way to the top floor?" She cradled her sickle like a bouquet. A deep sigh escaped her lips. "I guess we'll have to do it." She squeezed Chang-Hoon's hands. "This might be the last night we spend together."
Chang-Hoon choked on his words. "We'll always be together...somehow."
"How's Sook-Jo?" Yanyu regretted the question as soon as she asked it. She couldn't stop thinking about her, and how it could have been her having to endure Pedro. Mariangela had assured them all, that he was dead, but she could be lying. Yanyu shook her head and clenched her fists. "I'm sorry, that's just a stupid question."
"She's fine," Chang-Hoon hissed.
The steep stairs strained their legs. The relief was contagious when they saw Sakura and Yuzuko waiting for them. All five of them sat down at the bottom step.
Yuzuko looked up at Yanyu. "Those stairs are a killer!"
Yanyu nodded. "If the robots come we can just push them down the stairs."
Chang-Hoon chuckled. Tears streamed down his face. "This is supposed to be the happiest day of our lives."
Fan nudged his arm. "Crying won't get you anywhere. You need to create your own happiness."
Yanyu glared at her uncle, clutching onto her groom's hand. "Uncle Fan! Don't be so rude."
"I'm not being rude. Emotions make you weak in this game. That's why we have to work together. Sia's robots won't care who we are, we're all just fast food to them."
Sakura clapped her hands and smiled. "Why don't we get ready?" She held Chang-Hoon's hand and dragged him into the room. "You need to come to the front."
The wedding was set to be a private ceremony with tiny candles and a small number of guests at the front row. All the surviving contestants were there, and so was Yanyu's family in spirit. The moon looked radiant behind the altar. It was far from perfect, but it was sufficient. Her only wish was for Bobby to be quick.
With her arms linked with Uncle Fan. Yanyu reimagined her sickle as a bouquet of flowers. She thought of the best dream she ever had; pearl carriage led by unicorns; a rainbow track; a gothic castle; a choir of butterflies and birds; a live orchestra; and her Chang-Hoon in the finest velvet clothes. Reality had no rainbows for her.
A cold breeze blew half of the candles out. Chang-Hoon stopped crying and held her hand. Uncle Fan and Sook-Jo stood behind the bride and groom with the others sitting down with the expectation of Bobby who took his place at the altar.
"Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today in the sight of God, and Netflix subscribers, to bless the joining together of this man and this woman in Holy Matrimony." Bobby opened his arms bowed to Yanyu and Chang-Hoon, before placing his hands together in prayer. "Regardless of what faith you practise, we all understand the importance of marriage. It is an eternal commitment. So if anyone has any reasons as to why these two cannot be married, please speak now or forever hold your peace."
Yanyu held her breath. Stomach churning as sweat trickled down her cheek. One could mistake it for a teardrop. Her muscles tensed every time Bobby turned his head. No one spoke.
"We may continue," Bobby said. "Yanyu, will you have this man to be your husband; to live together with him in the covenant of marriage? Will you love him, comfort him, honour and keep him, in sickness and in health; and, forsaking all others, be faithful unto him as long as you both shall live?"
Yanyu's lips quivered. "I will."
Bobby steered his head to the groom. "And will you, Chang-Hoon, have this woman to be your wife; to live together with her in the covenant of marriage? Will you love her, comfort her, honour and keep her, in sickness and in health; and, forsaking all others, be faithful unto her as long as you both shall live?"
Chang-Hoon choked in his tears. "I will."
Bobby looked up to the rest of the crowd. "And will all of you promise to do all in your power to uphold these two people in their marriage?"
Bobby nodded, turning over a page in his book. "Now Chang-Hoon, please hold Yanyu's right hand and repeat after me." Chang-Hoon did as he was told.
"I, Mi Chang-Hoon, take you, Yanyu Wei Shang, to be my wife, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, until we are parted by death. This is my solemn vow."
Their hands swap over. "Now Yanyu, you must do the same," Bobby instructed.
"I, Yanyu Wei Shang, take you, Mi Chang-Hoon, to be my husband, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, until we are parted by death. This is my solemn vow."
Yanyu and Chang-Hoon smiled at each other, forgetting the dystopia they had dragged into. Bobby chanted more prayers but the words had been drowned out. She couldn't stop looking into Chang-Hoon's eyes, dark and mystical like her morning coffee. Uncle Fan brought out the dragon rings, both felt heavy to wear and to hold.
"Yanyu, I give you this ring as a symbol of my love, and with all that I am, and all that I have, I honour you, always and forever."
"Chang-Hoon, I give you this ring as a symbol of my love, and with all that I am, and all that I have, I honour you, always and forever."
"Chang-Hoon and Yanyu, you have given yourselves to each other through solemn vows, and exchange of vows and rings. I know pronounce you man and wife." Bobby steered his head over to Chang-Hoon. "You may now kiss the bride."
The applaud was interrupted by the smashing of the door. A gang of robots colonised together, interrogated the room. "Did we miss the wedding?" one of the robots asked. "What a shame?"
"PARTY TIME!" the robot at the back yelled. "The best thing about parties is free food."
The contestants knew by free food the robots meant...time.
Lavender took one of the candle stands. "YOU'RE ALL GOING DOWN!"
YOU ARE READING
Game of Mass DestructionScience Fiction
Sia Bucks hosts the Government-funded reality TV show, Game of Mass Destruction. The 30th season is about to start, and the chosen twenty are bestowed the task to destroy a thousand flesh-eating robots for a chance to win two billion dollars. Acts o...