“That’s dumb!” said Rachel. She closed her book and walked over to the table.
“That can’t really be your reason for wanting to keep your name.”
Derrick poured her a drink and sat down beside her.
“Why not? It’s strong. It’s sturdy. It let’s you know the person you’re dealing with.” He asserted.
“It let’s you know the person you’re dealing with?” Rachel sarcastically overlapped.
“Yeah, you never have to wonder who Derrick Gostkowski is. The name says my best qualities. You know that i am a dependable person.”
Derrick picked up a pen and pulled the wedding papers closer to him. Before he could put pen to paper Rachel leaned over and took the papers away.
“What about my name? Sloane?” Rachel asked.
“Your name? What’s so good about your name?” David responded.
“It’s my name, jackass. If your name is who you are, think about how I feel about my name?” said Rachel.
The two sat in silence for a moment and stared at the two pens next to the wedding paper. Each of them wanted to be the one to write their name. They wanted to keep their own identity and above all things they wanted to win. Unable to figure out something to say, Rachel reached for her tablet and Derrick took out his phone.
“What if we hyphenate?” Rachel said, breaking the silence.
“Do we really want to be that couple?” Derrick replied. “Plus, who would go first?”
Rachel moaned, got up from the table and went to the couch while looking at her tablet. Derrick played with his hands on the table and looked over to Rachel.
“It was a good question!” He said.
She mimicked him under her breath and continued what she was doing. He grabbed a drink from the refrigerator and sat down in the lounge chair. He turned on the tv and started to flip through the channels.
“Your name sucks” Rachel said without looking up.
Focused on the TV, Derrick countered with a childishly inflected, “Your name sucks.”
The moment he finished speaking the two looked at each other and laughed. They didn’t want to win anymore.
“Remember that Shakespeare quote about a rose by any other name?” Rachel said smiling.
“Yeah, I love that speech.”
“Well” Rachel gets up and hands Derrick her tablet, “Why don’t we rename the rose?”
Two months later
A hotel ballroom is overfilled with the family and friends of Rachel and Derrick. The lights dim and the chatter among the crowd grows to a still quiet. A DJ speaks.
“And now, ladies and gentlemen, for the first time in public, Mr. and Mrs. Underscore!”
This little bit of flash fiction was written in response to this prompt. Check it out to have a clue about what you just read. And read these people too. They’re awesome: