Sunday, 16 March 2014

Sunday, March 16, 2014 - ,

Taming Maria

by Leigh Smith
Published: Jan 22, 2014
Words: 21,814
Category: romance, western
Orientation: M/F
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Maria, what are you doing in there?"

"I'm getting dressed, Papa."

"Everybody is here and waiting for you."

"Well, I'm the bride and there is no wedding without me, so just let them wait."

"Maria, I'm warning you, if you are not downstairs in ten minutes, I am going to..."

"Going to what, Papa?"

"Send up Juan. He knows how to deal with you."

She smiled at the thought of Juan coming upstairs just now. The hell with the old wives tale about the groom seeing the bride before the actual ceremony. Juan would appreciate seeing her in the lacy bra, panties, and the garter belt holding up her silk stockings. She was wearing high heels and would do a little pirouette to let him get the full view. Oh, his prim and proper upbringing might kick in initially and he would threaten to take her over his knee if she didn't behave. Which wouldn't necessarily be a bad thing. I think I just might have to dawdle a little longer. Nothing like a bride blushing with afterglow, she thought to herself.


Cars had been traveling the road to Rolling Hills Ranch all day. The marriage of Maria Elena Bartolá and Juan Antonio Cabrillo was taking place on this the first day of 1946. The world had been made safe for democracy. California was beginning to experience the growth that would eventually propel it to the most populous and popular state in the union. Southern California was teeming with jobs and the promise of a better life. Returning military personnel were only too happy to migrate to this Golden State after experiencing a taste of 'paradise' while in the service. However, in this part of the state, the pace was a little slower and the aristocratic Spanish heritage was still very much in the forefront. Rolling Hills Ranch sat high atop the hills of the Monterey Peninsula.

With the setting sun glistening on the Pacific, it was the perfect backdrop for these two Californios. The Bartolá's and the Cabrillo's had lived on this land for generations. Hundreds of invitations had been sent and accepted because this was an event not to be missed. It was the first social event of this new year and although the union of these two families wasn't a surprise, it was surprising it had taken so long.

White, slat-back wooden chairs tied with white bows and white seat cushions were set in equal rows on either side of an aisle lined with baskets of flowers. The scent of the flowers combined with the salty sea air gave off a heady aroma. The priest stood at the head of the aisle, under the arched entrance to a gazebo covered in fragrant night blooming jasmine and watched as the bride walked down the aisle on the arm of her father. Juan stood to the right of the priest with his brother Joaquin standing beside him. Maria Elena was a vision in a long sleeved white satin gown, with a sweetheart neckline trimmed with hundreds of seed pearls.