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The Fairy Tale Bride

By:Scarlet Wilson

The Fairy Tale Bride
Scarlet Wilson

       A Montana Born Brides Novella




Chapter One





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Lisa Renee pushed the last dress into place. Her rails were definitely  cramped  –  a result of her buying spree in Great Falls last week. The  stockroom was also bursting at the seams. For a small-town bridal store  she was doing well. It was strange, Marietta seemed to attract brides.

She gave a little smile. There must be something in the air around here  and, as far as she was concerned, the more the merrier. This last year  had seen her newly opened store flourish.

The row of glittering sequined dresses sparkled in the sun streaming  through the store window. Satin, lace, tulle, duchesse silk  –  she had it  all, along with bridesmaid dresses in every style and color of the  rainbow.

She was renowned in town for her style and good customer service. She'd  never recommend a style to a potential bride that didn't flatter and  suit her. Even if they had their heart set on something else. That was  the thing about her bridal store. As soon as any woman walked in here  she became Lisa's project. All she wanted was to help fulfil their  dreams.

As she turned around, a ripple of pink from the stock room caught her  eye and made her shudder. Ugh. The nightmare dresses. The shade of pink  was just wrong. Or was it really orange? It all depended on the light.  Truth was, there wasn't a single skin tone it actually suited and the  style? She didn't know what she'd been thinking. Then again, that had  been the day she'd just heard her sister had married her runaway  ex-fiancé  – so maybe she did have an excuse for having a mini meltdown.  Sometime soon she'd have to surreptitiously dispose of those dresses and  deny they'd ever existed.

The shrill of the phone interrupted her thoughts. "Married in Marietta, can I help you?"

"Hi there, this is the PA for Nancy Parsons, I'd like to book some time in your salon."

The caller had a strange twang to their voice and Lisa couldn't quite  place the accent. "Who?" It probably wasn't the greatest reply, but  she'd been stung by so many cold callers trying to sell her something  that she liked to establish who she was talking to.

The caller didn't hide their annoyance. "Nancy Parsons? The Hollywood  superstar? You must have heard about her upcoming wedding to Jared  Lovell in a few weeks?"

It took a few seconds for recognition to seep in. "Oh, Nancylynn Pruitt.  Yes, I know her. What can I do for you?" It was automatic. Lisa Renee  couldn't think of Nancylynn as a Hollywood superstar  –  and she wasn't  quite sure it was an appropriate description. Nancy had been a few years  younger than her at Marietta high school and used to live on one of the  local ranches. Her parents now owned the ranch thanks to Nancylynn. To  be fair to Nancylynn, she probably was the most famous person ever to  have come from Marietta. She'd got her break as an actress as a  good-girl high schooler in a teen drama, then gone onto a primetime  drama called Sultry Suburbs where she'd met her husband-to-be, Jared  Lovell. The son of Hollywood royalty, his father was a superstar. Nancy  probably thought she'd hit the big time  –  but Lisa wasn't so sure that  Jared ‘Love 'em and love 'em again' Lovell was really a husband to dream  about.

Something in her stomach curled over. A wedding like this in Marietta  would bring big business for the town. And who was she to judge a  potential bridegroom? She hadn't exactly picked well herself. At least  Nancylynn's husband-to-be hadn't run off with someone else  –  not yet  anyway.

She took a deep breath. "No problem. When's the wedding?"

"June 20th. Jared and Nancy will be making the official announcement tomorrow."

"June 20th?" Lisa couldn't hide her surprise. "That's just over three  weeks away." She glanced around her shop. She stocked gorgeous and  exclusive designs  –  but surely a ‘Hollywood superstar' would have a  million dress designers wanting her to wear their wedding dresses?

She licked her dry lips. "Is Nancylynn looking for a wedding gown?"

The PA let out a peal of laughter. "What? Oh no. She's got that all  arranged. Her wedding dress is being made exclusively. It's bridesmaid  dresses we need." There was a sound of rustling paper. "We need your  shop for the final wedding dress fittings. That won't be a problem, will  it?"

Part of her was relieved. Part of her fleetingly annoyed by the laughter  and instant dismissal. But she didn't care. Bridesmaid dresses she  could do. She had them in abundance.

A quick thought flashed through her mind. "Any particular issues I  should know about the bridesmaids?" She was thinking purely  professionally.                       
       
           



       

"What do you mean?" snapped the PA, automatically defensive. A whole  pile of early warning lights started to go off in her brain. This  wedding could easily turn into a PR nightmare.

Even though she couldn't be seen, Lisa kept her professional face in  place. "I just wondered why they haven't found anything suitable yet? I  want to make sure I'll have something perfect for them. I'm afraid I  don't know any of the details of Nancylynn's wedding. Can you tell me  who the bridesmaids are? I want to make sure I have appropriate sizes  and colors that will suit them."

She could hear the PA sucking in a breath of frustration. She was  obviously used to snapping her fingers and everyone falling into line.  Lisa gave a little smile. Good luck in Marietta. "It's Nancy. She  doesn't like to be known by her former name. The bridesmaids are Polly  Parker and Ruby Cole."

"Oh, I see," said Lisa politely. Great. Two notorious bitchy actresses.  Both blonde, both with big boobs, who would probably look better wearing  red swimsuits than bridesmaid dresses. She made a few scribbles on her  notebook. They probably lied about their dress sizes too; she'd need to  cut the labels from all her dresses.

"Eh … they haven't exactly been able to agree on the style or color of  bridesmaid dresses yet." There was a little sigh at the end of the  phone. "We've had seventeen appointments so far."

Lisa got the unspoken message. Married in Marietta was last chance  saloon. She didn't know whether to be mortally offended or secretly  delighted. "I'll do my absolute best to try and keep both Polly and Ruby  happy."

There was a sigh of relief. "Thank you. Nancy needs things to be  settled. We're trying to do so much in a short space of time. If you  could deal with Polly and Ruby that would be great."

Lisa scribbled some notes. "When are they arriving?"

"Tomorrow. Can you see them then?"

Lisa blinked. Tomorrow. She'd have to shuffle a few things around. "No problem. Tell them I'll see them at 10:00 am."

She glanced at her watch and grabbed her coat, bag and change of  clothes. She was almost late for her volunteering shift at the hospital.  She pulled the shutter down in the main window and locked the door  behind her before hurrying along the street.

The one thing Lisa Renee hated above all else was lateness.

*

Adam Brady's pager sounded as he walked along the darkened corridors and he steered off towards the nearest phone. "Adam Brady."

"Hi Adam, sorry, it's Dan King. I hate to tell you this but – "

"Don't," cut in Adam, "You've got the bug too and want me to take over  your on-call." He stifled a sigh. It was his second call like this in  the last hour.

Dan gave a grateful moan. "Thanks, Adam. I owe you." The phone clicked quickly.

"You sure do." Adam looked at the telephone receiver with another sigh.

The nurse at the station looked up and smiled. "Another one? We've had  three nurses phone in with the bug for night shift tonight."

He nodded. "It's going to be a long night. Looks like I'm covering medical, surgical and peds."

She groaned for him. "Oh well. At least you've finished here. I'll let you know if there are any problems. Thanks, Adam."

He nodded and walked along the corridor, heading for the stairs. He  actually quite liked moving between specialties and didn't mind covering  at all. It was one of the reasons he'd come to Marietta. Working in the  city was different. You were confined to one specialty with everyone on  a high-powered career path. But Adam wasn't a traditional doctor  –  he  liked doing a bit of everything, and that's where it got complicated.

He didn't want to work in the ER. There was no follow up  –  no after  care. And although he'd considered general practice for a while he  preferred the pace in the hospital. That's why he was here, in Marietta.  Working in Marietta General was the perfect job. A huge variety of  hospital work with no pressure to specialize in only one area.

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