The Omega Message

by Jon Peters

The Omega Message

It was the day of our wedding and Reba was nowhere to be found. I was in my deep blue suit, Uncle Doug, drunk and stupid, adjusting my tie. We were in the groom’s room, waiting for news. Uncle Doug had just returned the bride’s suite, confusing the two rooms in his drunken state. He was blathering on about seeing the best pair of tits he’d ever laid eyes on.

Reba’s bridesmaid, Tana, burst through the door with a pained expression on her face. She shot daggers over at Doug, instinctively covering up the cleavage above her blood red dress, before turning her focus on me, her face softening from anger to worry.

“This isn’t like her. She should have been here two hours ago. What do I do?” Tana dabbed a tissue at her eyeliner, trying her best to keep the tears from ruining her makeup.

I couldn’t tell her the truth. Not with Doug here. It was too dangerous.

“You’ve checked the hospitals, news reports of crashes, all that?” I said with practiced alarm.

“Everything. We don’t know what happened.” Tana said as she pushed Doug out of the way and grabbed me by the shoulder. She stood so close I could smell the vanilla soap on her skin.

“I swear to you, Rory, she never said anything about having cold feet. She was—is—in love with you.” Tana squeezed my shoulder reassuringly.

“Oh, I know. We’re soul mates.” It was all I could say.

“You sound too calm, like you’re not surprised,” Tana said suspiciously.

Sharp woman.

Uncle Doug staggered out of the room. I breathed a sigh of relief. Now I could be honest. Slightly.

“It’s work related, Tana.” I gave her a reassuring smile.

“Oh no. Today of all days?” The tears began to flow. She understood now. Not everything. But enough.

“Bad timing. But until I get the official message, I must pretend like everything is normal. This stays between us. Got it?”

“Of course. But where are you guys going this time?” Tana's face turned from worry to relief to curiosity all at once.

“You know I can’t tell you that.”

“So much for a happy wedding, Rory. I’m so sorry.” Tana hugged me. I was glad to have her support. This life wasn’t easy.

“Are you kidding? It’s the best wedding I could possibly have! As soon as Reba confirms, I’ll be off. We’ve waited a long time for this!” I tried to sound reassuring to Tana but I knew she would never truly understand.

My burner phone buzzed.

“Is it her?” Tana asked, peeking at my phone. I carefully pulled away from her so she couldn’t see the text.

“It is. Call off the wedding. Tell them Reba and I were called into work. Her mom will be pissed but we’ll reschedule the wedding. I’ve got to go. Take care, Tana.” I gave her a hug, knowing I wouldn’t see her again for a long time.

Maybe never again.

The text Reba sent contained only three words:

Omega 8 Confirmed.