She had been so busy working in her medical career that she had lost track of what everyone else in the neighborhood had been doing.
That morning, she had been sent on a house call to the extravagant (but gloomy) Goth mansion,
to examine Cameron Bercerra.
She had had to admit Cameron to the hospital,
and it had taken Lou the rest of a very long day to diagnose Cameron's "Bloaty Head" disease.
"I'm NOT going to Alice's 'wedding'," the exhausted Lou announced flatly to Regina.
"But you HAVE to go, Lou!" Regina protested. "Dude's mother already thinks that Peter goes over to the Glass Box house every day because he has 'designs' on Alice."
"Well, maybe he DOES!" Lou said grumpily, washing her hands with more fury than Regina would have thought possible.
"You KNOW that's not true," Regina told her, trying to keep her voice down,
because Peter was in the next room painting.
(He always came back from Alice and Dude's house a few minutes before Lou returned from work.)
"Everyone but you can see that he's crazy about you," Regina said, though she was aware that she was treading on thin ice with a very high-strung woman.
Lou had no response except to stomp up the stairs to take a shower.
Alice and Dude got married in Kelly and Derek's backyard a few days later.
Alice and Dude themselves had no yard to speak of, and neither did Bill and Regina. And Lou's ample side yard was out of the question, because of how Lou felt about Alice. (Although Peter, her co-homeowner, would have been happy to have the wedding there.)
Derek was away again for astronaut training, but he had moved Kelly's cupcake machine and his own microscope to the side yard before he had left.
Fortunately, the siding had finally been finished on the upper story,
or Andromeda probably would have said something negative about it.
"You also have a LOVELY home!" she told Kelly. "Much better than that awful house my son and his wife live in across the road!"
"Oh, well, we're glad they're close by," Kelly assured her. "Even if they have to live in a somewhat 'untraditional' house."
Dude and his father were playing chess.
"Thank you, son, for doing this 'second' wedding to appease your mother," Daedelus told Dude.
"Mama seems to like Alice, and I want that to continue, for the sake of Alice's happiness," Dude said. "And yours too, of course, Papa."
Kelly had prepared a very nice spread of salad, rack of lamb, herb-crusted salmon, and of course a wedding cake.
Dude looked oddly nervous, given that he was already married to Alice.
Alice, however, looked calm and beautiful.
"Kelly, thank you SO much for getting all the wedding arrangements together so quickly!" Alice toasted her friend, as they sat down after the ceremony.
Kelly was in a great mood, even though--or perhaps BECAUSE--her husband, Derek, was once again away at an astronaut training program.
The same could NOT be said for Andromeda's mood. (Not that she cared about Derek--or even knew who he was--but Andromeda was just generally annoyed about everything.)
"You seem to be a VERY close friend of my son," Andromeda confronted Bill. "So why there no pictures of you at his 'first wedding'? Or of this 'first wedding' at all???"
Bill gave his wife a sidelong glance, begging for help.
Dude's father sighed heavily.
"Oh, they were just a young couple madly in love," Regina stammered, somewhat lamely. "And they got married in a whirlwind, and didn't tell us about it till later!" (This story was not at ALL true, but Regina was hoping it would hold up till Dude's parents went back to Greece the following day.)
Andromeda sniffed her disapproval, but Daedelus spoke up before his wife could utter another word.
"We are DELIGHTED for Dude and Alice," he said, without even glancing at Andromeda, "and although we missed the 'first wedding' I assure you we are thrilled to be at THIS one. And we are also thrilled with our wonderful grandson, Daedelus III."
Andromeda waved off her husband's attempt to take control of the conversation.
"Well, I for one am still suspicious," she declared loudly.
At the next table, Alice could hear her new mother-in-law hounding Bill and Regina,
and could see that it was making Dude uncomfortable.
"So, Kelly, where's Declan today?" Alice asked, trying to get some conversation going to distract those at her table.
"He went to his friend Erin's house after school," Kelly explained. "Like most little boys, he has NO interest in weddings!"
Across the street, Lou was just getting home from work.
She had been promoted again, this time to Registered Nurse.
She also finally had her Doctor of Medicine diploma, and hung it proudly on the wall next to her computer, so that she could always see it while she was doing research.
She sat down to work.
And she did NOT--not for even one second--consider going across the street to Alice and Dude's reception.