The speech (teaser)
“I remember when we moved to Holmes Chapel when I was six and Gemma was ten, and the whole place was a scary thing full of nice but too curious people, who were eager to welcome us to our home and wanted to make sure it felt like one. When in the first weeks several of you dropped off to leave us blankets and leftovers from your dinners because the house was still being worked on. And then at one point one of you said: ‘Enough! You’re going to stay with me for the week until everything is safe and finished. The kids can sleep with my daughter in her room.’” Harry then turned to Aibileens mom. “Hi, Carin,” he grinned, “have I ever thanked you for that? You took in my mother and us so that we could have some real rest and safety, and with that you changed my life. You were the reason I met your daughter, and you are the reason today that we’re all here. So thank you for that.” Carin was smiling shyly, the tears clearly reflecting in her eyes.
“It didn’t immediately work out, though. In the doorframe was standing this tiny, upset girl who had no interest in sharing her room with others. Especially with a much older girl - four years was huge back then! - and this annoying boy who wouldn’t ever stop grinning at her. Yes, you told me that,” Harry muttered at Aibileen, who had wanted to correct him, blushing, “no backing out now! Anyway, that was the start of a friendship, where I spent the first few months trying to get her give in to my amazing friendship-skills, which then finally worked, and then we were best mates.”
Harry turned to Aibileen. “Since then we’ve been through a lot. First we had to grow up, and you were a woman earlier than I was a man and the strings loosened those years. Then they pulled tight again when we got History together in third year of high school, and we picked up right where we left it. It was so easy,” Harry smiled weakly, “and even though we never said it out loud, we knew there was something between us no one else had. I mean, who the fuck decides to be best friends within an hour again after two years of not speaking to each other? Right?” A faint laughter came from the people in the room. “Oh, dear, sorry for the F-word. In advance. We’re still about to get real, though. This wont be the last time today. So get readyyy...” Aibileen shook her head, smiling.
“Anyway, we were both 15 years old and I would see her mother’s face more often than my own’s. So we made this week-schedule with our parents so each parent would see their child at least every day, and in the weekends we would all go to one of our houses and have dinner with everybody. God, those memories… they stick with me forever. Ever and ever.” Harry’s eyes were starting to turn red, but he didn’t show any kind of that emotion yet or whatsoever.
“Then we turned 16 years old and we were tighter than ever. And ever since I started to sing, she was my number one supporter,” he smiled down at Aibileen, “and she was, along with my family, the one to get me to audition for X Factor, and that really, really changed my life. It changed hers in some ways, too.” The smile slightly disappeared again.
“Along the road I met so many people, of whom some stuck around. I’ve made new friends, got into relationships, of which all ended, and along all the way she was there. And then one time I was dating someone, who I am now surprisingly still friends with, and I realized it wasn’t the life I wanted. The life I wanted was back home, probably on the couch with my sister and watching Friends with a cup of ice cream.
So I went for it! Everything was great! We kissed, we danced, we loved. Dear,” Harry had faced the other people but turned back to Aibileen again, “back then I just couldn’t believe you actually wanted to be with me that way. I was away much of the time, and wasn’t able to give you everything you deserved, and you were so relaxed about it. I remember when you said: ‘Harry, you chill, I chill. You’re making the best out of your life right now, and I don’t fully fit in it now, but that’s okay. There will be a time when things turn around, sometimes for the better, and I will make that turn with you. I will.’ ” Real tears had now sprung in his eyes and everyone else had gone silent. “You actually said that to me, and it was a big thing to me, but then I fucked up. Oops, there’s the word again,” he joked while silently sniffing, “although I can’t say I really did. It may have seemed like a mistake at first, because it wasn’t planned, and neither was the second one, but now I’m so, so glad it happened. Look at them two,” he faced Tristan and Charlie, who were both listening tot heir father but didn’t seem to fully comprehend what he was saying yet, “look how good of friends they are now. I’m so proud of my boys, and I love them actually more than I love Aibileen, oops, sorry,” he grinned, “but I really do. I look at them now and I feel so happy and almost eager to end this day so I can officially start my family-life with the love of my life and these two kids. We are so lucky,” he hastily wipes away the first rolling tear, “to be in the life we are in now. With great friends and family, whom we were born with or met along the way, and you have all brought us love and happiness. I hope we did the same to you. And will do more once this day is fucking over,” he grinned again, some people laughing and some rolling their eyes.
“Which brings me to the end, that I for once want to keep short. Yes, long story short: in the years I didn’t have her by my side I suffered mental problems, and yes! Everyone can know! She was my balance and I’d lost it. But then she suddenly returned and this time it didn’t take us one hour but a couple months instead to get used to each other again. In that loving way. Things changed quickly, we all quit with the band and went our own ways, and I went back to my home. And now we are here! Took us some time, so sorry for that, but there’s some garnish on the tables in front of you so please feel free to snack them all. We wont judge. Today.” He winked and more laughter filled the room.
“Which really brings me to the last thing now. I am so, so grateful and happy to have been married to this woman today, even though it already felt like I was years ago. I look at you, baby,” Harry turned to Aibileen again, this time also grabbing her hand and squeezing it tightly, “and I wonder what I’ve done to deserve you. Look at you! Look at how you look today! I’ve never seen someone look so fantastic in a wedding dress - sorry, mom, you’re going second place - and back then at the altar I just wanted to meet you halfway and not wait there, standing. Come here,” several awes came from their friends and family when Harry pulled Aibileen up, in a tight hug, kissing her hair and then her forehead, mumbling things to her no one else could hear, and they must have been beautiful, because Aibileen teared up. Her fingers tore in his jacket, never wanting to let him go. He had to, though, because he wasn’t finished yet.
“Which now really, really brings me to the last thing. I swear!” Harry laughed and put his hands up in surrender. “Aibileen and I have been wanting to tell you this for a couple weeks already, but also saw this day as the perfect moment to share it with you all. You might want to sit down if you weren't already, but if you decide to stand please dance through the room when we tell you what we want to tell you. Honey, do you want to tell them? Or should I? Oh, yes, please go ahead, darling…” Harry handed over the microphone to Aibileen, who was clearly nervous, stroking her dress for dirt that wasn’t there.