George paused in the summer's heat and picked up a five pence from the floor. He felt somewhat obliged to. His day had been less than brilliant. Much less. It was the summer holidays and at eleven am that morning he had met his friends at the park and played football. His girlfriend of the time, Annie, not long later arrived with her friends. They sat on jumpers and towels by the makeshift football pitch. George was very aware of Annie and her friends giggling, but he knew his friends were too. It made them act differently. Angus was celebrating after every goal he scored to impress Lily and he was faintly aware of Ben, his best friend, shouting louder than usual. Why, he didn't know.
As time went on, they became accustomed to their surroundings and they took a break to sit with the girls. Lily and Masie spoke about how excited they were to enter year eleven. "It's gonna be awesome," Angus agreed.
As the guys walked back to the pitch, Jeremy (Masie's boyfriend) approached him, seemingly anxiously. "Mate," Jeremy started. "Bad news."
George's stomach resembled the flip Ben was currently performing and his eyes followed the giggles to find Annie's being the loudest, Ben grinning back. George turned back to Jeremy.
"Thing is, mate." George suddenly found his use of "mate" highly irritating. "Annie's... She's breaking up with you."
Ben flipped forwards and then backwards and once again, George's stomach copied. George had always felt like Ben lead him and he followed. But Annie. Annie was something - a happy, lovely something - that George was proud of. And she was his. Not Ben's. Not that she was a trophy.
"Between you and me... She's been into Ben since she heard he was into her. Rough mate."
And that was it.
Not knowing what to do, George didn't say a word. He just ran. He ran really fast in the hope to get away to some place far away, half wanting Annie to be right behind him, half not.
And then, when he remembered the summer's heat, he slowed down and saw the silver piece smiling on the ground. It had to be good luck, right?
~ 10 years later
Ten years on, and George slapped his best friend gently on the arm. "Today's the day, ay?" he repeated for the more-than-tenth time that morning.
"The best day of my life." George's best friend smiled back at him and he couldn't be more proud.
"I love you both, man. This is it now. You've made it."
"Cheers George," he smiled goofily and they hugged. "This is why you're my best man. I love Annie and she is my everything, but you... You keep me on track, man."
George nodded and reached into his pocket and brought out that very five pence piece. "I need to tell you something."
"Of course. Anything," Ben smiled at him.
George recalled the day that started a year of heartache for George. He carried on being Ben's best friend, supporting him when he came to him not long after that day, asking if he could ask Annie out. And here they were, ten years later, on their wedding day. And, honestly? George couldn't be more happy.
"I've kept this five pence in my wallet for ten years. I felt it was lucky and believe it or not, it was. The day I met Laura, this five pence fell out of my wallet and I panicked. I was paying for something and I couldn't focus on anything else. I needed it back."
"This is the very five pence Loz picked up? The famous coin that started George+Laura?"
"Yes," George grinned.
"But you should have it, George. You keep it!"
"No, Ben. You're always going to be my best friend, right?"
"If I can steal your girlfriend and we're still best friends ten years later... Yeah, we'll always be best friends."
"So that coin will never be too far away from me."
"As long as it's in my wallet and you're in my heart," Ben winks. "It'll never be too far away from you."
"It's time I share my luck with my best friend."
~ The late afternoon of the wedding
With their hands held warmly in each other's, George laughs at Annie's dad's comment about Ben's tendency to be late and turns to his gorgeous girlfriend. It takes a moment for her to realise, her being so engrossed in the magic of the day; when she does, her eyes linger on George's lips. George instantly smiles. Laura's eyes glisten a little and her lips mirror his.
"My lucky charm," he whispers into her ear.
Lucky Charms & Heartfelt Smiles,
The Girl in the Moonlight.