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Yesterday, Paula and I were talking about weddings. She, however, is already married—the single most gorgeous, personal, and relaxed wedding I’ve been a part of to date—so I guess we were only talking about one wedding.

There was a silence in our conversation, where we sat on the couch, our feet tangled up on a love seat too small for every inch of our adult bodies and the nuzzling snout of her black lab, all of which were finding space here.

I had alluded to eloping, not said that I would or was in favor, just alluded, even a little in jest. I had mentioned, even admitted to romanticizing the fact that eloping was something we almost did a number of years ago. I was a touch embarrassed that we’d suggested Vegas. I think I credited him for saying “Let’s go” because he did.

She broke the silence with disgust edged in playfulness. If you ever, she said. If you ever run away and came back married… It was a threat, not a joke. I laughed at the way it fit her character. At the way she so boldly called me on it like that. I will be standing in your wedding, she said.

Delighted in her boldness by which she said, I will stand by you, I will rejoice with you, we will do life together, I tossed the dog’s squeaky toy to relieve myself of his slobbery face and quieted her fears. Oh yes ma’am, you will.