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“Picture this, Molly,” he says, leaning down into my neck. I breathe in deeply as he whispers my name across the sensitive skin. “Hundreds of girls dressed in white gowns, much like the one you’re wearing tonight. And hundreds of escorts, dressed in a tux, much like mine. We filed into the grand cathedral, four abreast. Girl, boy, girl, boy. Black, white, black, white. Each escort holding the hand of his beautiful partner up, like he’d won the lottery.

“The stained glass was glowing from the interior lights. The music was lively. And nothing but proud faces beamed from the perimeter. My heart was beating fast that night. We’d been practicing the dances for months. Each one was coordinated to show us off. Each one classically choreographed to stun the families who sat in the boxed seats above. And when I watched the video days later, I felt like we were spinning for Heaven. Like every move that night was synchronized for God’s pleasure.”

“It sounds lovely,” I whisper, lost in his dream.

“It was a moment of peace in a life overflowing with chaos.”

“So what happened to her?”

“What?” he asks, breaking the spell he’s put me under, and causing my eyes to open.

“Where is she? It sounds like the night of your life.”

His smile is gone and his eyes are no longer bright. “I was a few years older than her, already in my third year of college by that time. And she was still in high school. But she never finished because there was a family emergency a few days later and she left town. I never saw her again.”

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