"Stop being such a selfish bitch!" Rachel's mom yelled at her. It was the day of her mom's wedding, and Rachel was feeling no remorse over telling everyone exactly what she thought of her mom remarrying. She didn't want a new family, she'd been quite happy when it was just her and her mom. She didn't want a father, and a brother and sister, they'd just be more people to tell her how everything she did was wrong, "You don't have to like it, all you have to do is walk down the aisle, and then stand there, but if you still know how, it'd be nice if you'd smile."

Rachel stood there stubbornly, glaring at her mom. Her green maid of honor's dress still gaping open where it zipped up the back, "I don't like it, and I want everyone to know it," she snottily replied. Her green eyes flashing fiercely.

"No one cares what you think!" her mom argued, Rachel's eyes flew wide in surprise, "This is my wedding, can you please be civilized," she begged. Rachel turned away.

"Oh Rachel! I'm so excited," her soon to be stepsister Sarah gushed running over to them. Sarah was fifteen, two years younger than Rachel, and she worshipped her, she was so excited about having a sister, "Aren't you excited Rachel?" she asked, completely naive to Rachel's life's a bitch attitude.

Rachel stood staring at Sarah for a few moments, incapable of comprehending how someone could be so naive, "No," came her blunt response. Sarah smiled faltered for a moment but was quickly regained, she kept hoping that once the reality had sunk in, Rachel would learn to accept her family, and be happy to have a little sister to share things with.

Sarah walked back over to where the other bridesmaids were clustering, and immersed herself in the excitement that was mounting as the wedding drew nearer. Rachel stayed back, her mother spun her around, and furiously zipped up Rachel's dress, and stormed away. She was now talking excitedly to her bridesmaids, completely ignoring her sulking daughter.

Not very much later, in terms of weddings, the wedding party was just about ready to pile into the cars that would take them to the church. The bouquets were hastily being handed out to the departing girls. Rachel was handed hers as she stepped out the front door of her new house, realizing when she returned it would be with her new stepfamily. Yay, she thought bitterly, lifting her long full skirt to step carefully down the front steps. She gazed at the three cars lined up on the side of the street, and headed for the middle one that would transport, her, her mom, Sarah, and Sarah's friend Jessica, who was also one of the bridesmaids, to the wedding. Sarah and Jessica were already seated inside, and her mother was right behind her.

"Hurry up Rachel, were already late," Sarah called enthusiastically to Rachel. Rachel stepped up to the open car door and stepped inside, she plopped down, her thick skirt swelling around her, and slammed the door behind her, careful not to catch her dress. Her mother's door shut a few seconds later.

"All present and accounted for?" Rachel's grandfather asked? He was the chauffeur for the four women. Everyone giggled excitedly, everyone except Rachel who just stared blankly at the back of her mother's seat, "Come on Rachel. Show us your beautiful smile," her grandfather urged.

"No," Rachel grumbled turning to stare out the window as the car pulled onto the road.

"Leave her alone Dad, let her be bitter if she wants to. I'm not going to let her ruin my mood, just 'cause she thinks the world revolves around her. Some day she'll learn," her mother stated confidently smoothing her hands over her silk wedding gown, "Oh Dad, I'm so excited, I feel exactly as I did eighteen years ago, it's like I'm twenty-three again."

"Yeah, and your acting like you're twenty-three again. You're forgetting that you're forty-one now and have a daughter, and responsibilities," Rachel commented not taking her eyes away from the window.

Her mom turned around in her seat to look at her daughter, "You're a fine one to talk about responsibilities, your lucky your not pregnant yet. That might teach you a thing or two about responsibilities, but knowing you, you'd get an abortion, or give your child up for adoption before you'd actually deal with the consequences of your actions," Rachel continued to stare blankly out the window pretending not to hear since she didn't have a response.

Rachel didn't say another word for the rest of the trip, but listened disgustedly to the excited babble between her mother and grandfather, as well as between Sarah and Jessica. By the time they arrived at the church Rachel was about ready to scream. She couldn't get out of the car fast enough. She darted out nearly catching her skirt in the door as she slammed it in Sarah's face. But once out of the car Rachel realized she still wasn't free, she was at the church where her mother would be wed, she couldn't do anything about it, anymore than she could get away from it.

Along with the rest of the just arriving wedding party, Rachel was ushered inside, where everyone was hurrying around trying to get everything organized. When at last they were ready to begin, the wedding party was lined up in the order they were to enter, and every little detail was ready to perfection, the music began, and slowly the wedding party proceeded. First the Flower Girl, who was one of Rachel's younger cousins, next came the first four bridesmaids who walked down the aisle in two's, and were an assortment of Rachel's cousins, and daughters of her mothers friends, followed by Sarah and Jessica who were beaming with excitement. After them came Rachel, her mother hissed in her ear to smile just before she proceeded down the aisle.

Rachel didn't smile. Her face remained perfectly expressionless as she walked slowly down the aisle exactly as she'd practice at the rehearsal. As she reached the front of the church she chanced a quick glance to her right at Brandon, her soon to be step brother, where he stood next to her soon to be stepfather Robert, as his best man.

Catching her quick glance, Brandon flashed her a smile that was met with a cold icy stare from Rachel before she took her place opposite him. The music switched to the wedding march and she watched her mother, escorted by her grandfather walk down the aisle beaming as she gazed upon her soon to be husband.

Despite Rachel's resentment the ceremony proceeded, and all too quickly she heard the minister saying to her new stepfather, "You may now kiss the bride," Rachel watched with disgust as Robert gave her mother a short but deep kiss.

The church emptied as everyone went outside in the unusually warm October sunshine, to socialize and offer congratulations to the newly weds. Rachel stood off to the side by herself, because she didn't feel like socializing, and none of her friends were involved in, or attended the wedding, like Sarah, and Brandon's had. She hadn't wanted her friends present to see the ceremony she despised.

After she had done her short social route, Sarah came over towards Rachel. "We're really sisters now Rachel! Oh, this is going to be so much fun!" She gushed.

Rachel stared at Sarah, her face remained expressionless, as she unenthusiastically replied, "Stepsisters. And I don't think it's going to be all that fun," she saw a hurt expression cross Sarah's oval face, but didn't feel the slightest bit of remorse.

Sarah quickly composed herself after the first initial sting of Rachel's words, and she remained determined to get through her stepsister thick shield, "Why are you so against this wedding? Our parents love each other, isn't their happiness worth anything to you? I know it's difficult to accept, but me and Brandon have to deal with it too. Maybe you should stop being so selfish, and think about someone else for a minuet," her words were harsh, but she spoke them softly, almost afraid of how her stepsister would react.

Rachel's eyes flashed angrily, "You don't understand what it's like. Your father's lucky to get a woman as wonderful as my mother. You guy's should feel privileged. I mean, after your slut of a mother, anything would be an improvement, and you get a great new stepmother. My father was ten times what your father is. My parents were in love. But my father died! He didn't run off with his lover like your mom. I had the greatest Dad, and now I'm supposed to forget him, and accept my new stepfather in his place?" tears glistened in her eyes as she spoke of her father, but anger was the dominant emotion, and her icy words made the tears flow freely down Sarah's face.

As she tried to sniff back the tears, and tried not to take Rachel's words to heart, she was angry, and couldn't mean the things she said, but she only managed to get out a bitter, "My father's just as good as yours," before she burst into tears, and raced away.

Rachel clenched her teeth to hold back her tears, as she straightened her back, and held her head up high. Taking a deep breath, she headed for the refreshment table. But was only halfway there when a hand grabbed her arm and spun her around. She looked up to find herself face to face with her angry mother, "What did you say to Sarah?"

"Nothing she didn't deserve," Rachel replied hautily.

"Like hell she did! Rachel, she's your stepsister now, show her a little respect. I don't care what you think, but keep it to yourself and stop ruining my wedding!" her mother yelled, turning more than a few heads. Rachel rolled her eyes and started walking away, but her mother grabbed her and pulled her back, "I'm serious Rachel, I don't want to hear another word out of you."

"Or what?" Rachel sneered.

Her mother glared at her, "Don't push me Rachel. I'm very unimpressed with you today. If you say one more word, you'll seriously regret it," with that her mother walked away. Rachel gave a little snort and continued on course to the refreshment table. After grabbing some punch and a few snacks she found herself a chair by itself, a good distance from anyone else, turned it around so she wouldn't have to watch everyone congratulating her mother on her marriage, and sat down.

After a few minuets alone with her thoughts and her food, someone plopped another chair down beside hers and sat in it, "So what are we looking at?" the person teased.

Rachel glanced over to see her stepbrother Brandon sitting beside her. She couldn't help but admitting to herself how good-looking he looked in his sleek black tuxedo and his medium length brown hair tucked behind his ears. But she turned away and asked boredly, "I suppose you're here to lecture me too about how I'm ruining the wedding?"

"Actually," he replied, "I'm here for the view," he joked gesturing at the land in front of them.

"Yeah, right," she snorted, "So why are you really here?" she glanced over at him to see him studying her. She met his eyes expecting him to turn away embarrassed, but when he didn't she was forced to look away, though not at all embarrassed.

"I'm here, 'cause you look like you need a friend," he stated plainly, compleatly braced for her rejection, and prepared not too take 'no' for an answer.

Rachel turned to face him, to give her words more emphasis, "I don't want, or need you for a friend. It's because of you and your family that I'm being extra bitchy today, so I don't think your friendship is going to help," she put extra emphasis on 'friendship', and turned back to stare straight ahead again.

Brandon was fully prepared for what she said, he'd already come up with his argument before he'd arrived, and was now in a position to use it, "Despite what you think, I do understand what you're feeling, I'm might not exactly share your sentiments but I understand where they're coming from," he paused, but when she didn't cut in, he continued, "I heard what you said to my sister, and I don't blame you for what you said, it was the truth, but you didn't need to say them. Your main problem is, you don't think about other people's feelings."

"I thought you weren't going to lecture me?" she asked angrily turning to glare at him, "I know my faults, I'm well aware of everyone of them. I don't need people constantly reminding of them. I know people don't like my opinions, but I honestly don't care what they think, I think people should hear the truth, it's not my fault if they can't handle it," she crossed her arms across her chest, and slid lower in her chair.

Brandon stood up, picked up his chair, and replaced it in front of her, then re seated himself backwards on the chair and rested his arms on top of the back of the chair, "You're a little hypocrite," he laughed, "You say you don't like people telling you all your faults, but they're just telling you the truth, but you don't want to hear it. You don't like hearing the truth anymore than the next person," he expected her to have some sort of come back, but Rachel had none, and that made her even angrier. But she was determined to have the last laugh, so she hoisted her skirt and placed her four inch green silk platform sandles against the back of Brandon's chair and pushed, knocking his chair over, and landing him on his butt on the grass. She then stood up and walked away. She could hear him laughing behind her, but she had nothing left up her sleeve so she embarassedly walked away.

The wedding progressed into diner, and then on to the dance. Rachel sat sulkily in the corner, trying not to watch her mother and stepfather as the socialized with guests and danced. Her stepfather Robert came over once, asking to dance with his new stepdaughter, but when she flatly refused, he left her alone. Sarah still stinging from Rachel's words that afternoon, also kept her distance. Rachel also discovered that as long as she kept too herself, and didn't speak to anyone, her mom left her alone too, and Brandon compleatly ignored her, dancing with the bridesmaids, and the young female guests, giving Rachel a small pang of jealousy that she didn't understand, until at the very end of the night during the last few songs before, her mother and Robert left for the hotel where they would spend their wedding night before they made a quick stop at the house the next day to say bye to their kids before they left for their honeymoon in Niagara Falls. She saw him as soon as he got up from the table where he had sat down to take a breather. Her eyes followed him as he made his way through the scattering of chairs and tables towards her.

"No," she said just as he reached her, before he could even open his mouth, knowing exactly what he was going to say.

"You can't say 'no', I wasn't going to ask a question," he said teasingly as he grabbed her arm, and pulled her too her feet. She violently yanked her arm from his grasp, and sat ungracefully back down, "Come on," he urged, "I've danced with every other girl here, my night wouldn't be complete if I didn't dance with my new stepsister," he grinned and pulled her to her feet again, this time keeping a tighter grip so she couldn't escape again, "Besides, you've been sitting in this corner the whole night. No matter how much you hated the wedding, your entire day would be a complete waste of time," she gave up trying to struggle, seeing he wasn't going to give up, and let him lead her out on the dance floor, where he draped her arms around his shoulder, and wrapped his arms around her back, keeping his arms locked tightly around her so she couldn't get away, "Is this so bad?" he asked.

"Yes," she replied with lack of emotion, Brandon laughed. She found herself relaxing in his arms, and almost, almost enjoying herself. She felt so small in Brandon's arms, because even in her heels, he was still a good five inches taller that her 5'6, and he was powerfully built, all muscle, and even though she felt he could crush her with his bare hands if he tried, she still felt safe within the circle of his arms, and found herself leaning closer to him.

"Ohh, my feet are killing me," she groaned, and in response, Brandon shifted his hands and lifted her up so her feet dangled just off the ground, and when he felt her arms tighten instinctively around his neck, he moved his hands back in their original place, where they could still hold her up, but unless anyone looked closely, no one would be able to tell that Rachel's feet weren't on the ground, "Much better," she laughed but she didn't say 'thank you,' it just felt too weird to be dancing with her feet off the floor.

After their dance, her mother and Robert said a quick good bye to Rachel, Brandon, and Sarah, before they left for their hotel for the night, and the three kids got into Brandon's car to go home.

Without saying a word to Sarah, Rachel slid into the front seat where their was much more room for her to stretch her legs, and forced Sarah to sit in the back. Brandon sat in the driver's seat, and turned the car on. As they drove away, Rachel leaned down to undo the buckles on her sandles and slid them off. Then sitting back, she lifted her feet one at a time onto the dash board where she could massage her sore feet, and Brandon stole more than one glance at her bared calf.

By the time they reached the house, Rachel had nearly fallen asleep, and it took great effort to get up out of the car and walk to the door where Brandon was already sliding his key into the lock. When the door was unlocked, Brandon held it open while his nearly asleep sister, and stepsister trudged wearily inside. Without saying a word to anyone, they all headed towards their bedrooms. Rachel and Sarah upstairs, and Brandon into the basement. It nearly drained her of what little energy she had left to get up the stairs, and the rest was drained getting out of her dress, and into her pajama's. She collapsed on her bed, every muscle in her body aching, and quickly fell asleep.


Author's Note: This is a fairly old story of mine and I haven't worked on it in a really long time, but I'm not against returning to it. But ONLY if I get several raving reviews. If you like it, tell me. It's feedback from readers that keeps me interested in my stories. If you don't like it, please tell me why not, it may help me with my writing of other, better stories.