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A Summer Bay Wedding 3 - Don't Tell The Bride

Guest TelephotoMarigold

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Story Title: A Summer Bay Wedding 3 - Don't Tell the Bride

Type of story: Long Fic

Main Characters: Mike and Danni

Other Characters: Roman and Ella, Aden & Belle, Nic & Geoff, Gabby & Jacob, Toby and Amy-Belle, The children.

BTTB rating: A

Genre: Drama & Romance

Does story include spoilers: Maybe

Any warnings: Will warn at the beginning of each chapter if necessary

Summary: Danni has a wedding dress but refuses to commit to getting married to Mike. They've been through a lot in just a couple of years. The premature birth of Jennie and the disputed paternity and all the feelings revolving around that. Taking his cue from Roman and Ella and all the times the couple have 'surprised' each other Mike can only see one course of action. He must plan the wedding of Danni's dreams and sweep her off her feet, with just one little, tiny detail, if Danni finds out what he is doing her panic will make her bolt. So here is the plan, he won't tell the Bride until the big day. But in a town like Summer Bay how will he manage to keep it a secret?


Roman looked in his fridge and glared at the empty shelves before closing the door and looking over at Mike who was chopping down on a sandwich, using the last of the bread and the last of cheese. Turning he saw the state of his kitchen and growled softly under his breath.

“That is it!” he muttered and paced over stand in front of Mike and blocking the other man’s view of the tv. “What happened to you Mike? Why did you turn into a slob?”

Mike choked on his bite of sandwich at the question before narrowing his eyes and looking round the room. He saw what Roman was seeing and frowned some more before placing his sandwich carefully on his plate and putting that on the coffee table. Reaching for the remote he clicked off the tv and stood up. His eyes made a 360o degree sweep of the room and he equally carefully moved over to the long dining table where he’d dumped his bag and the many piles of marking he had. Shuffling the papers around, he quickly sorted through them before stacking them all in one pile and then tidied up and put his laptop away. He moved methodically, his gestures precise and neat and within minutes he had the table cleared and everything put away. Only then did he turn and look at Roman.

“Because Danni wanted me not to be perfect,” he finally admitted his voice shaken. “You know Mum, and well army,” Mike shrugged. “Well Danni needed me to have a flaw.”

“And you developed this untidiness.”

“It fitted in with Danni,” Mike shrugged again. “I guess, I just got used to being this way.”

“What are you going to do about her Mike? You can’t change who you are to fit with a person,” Roman murmured. “It doesn’t work out so well,” he added and flicked his hand around the room in a sweeping gesture indicating his living there in the house when he wanted to be the other side of the Bay with Ella. Walking past his son he moved into the kitchen and took out the whiskey and a couple of glasses pouring them both a drink.

“Did you change for Mum?”

“No,” Roman said immediately. “She changed for me.”

“But you were happy?”

“I was an idiot.”

Roman handed over the glass and took a drink of his grimacing at the truth in his last sentence. He had been an idiot especially taking Ella for granted most of the time. As he talked he began cleaning the kitchen tops and stacking all the used cutlery and pots into the sink and putting them in soak. The small kitchen had no room for a dishwasher and sometimes he didn’t mind that, enjoying the manual labour. Today was an exception to that rule and he left them to soak as he wiped his hands dry on a cloth and moved to sit at the table with his drink noting Mike sitting opposite him.

“Dad,” Mike began, “So er,”

“Your mother did all the compromises Mike, moving to Summer Bay, getting married, taking on Nicole and you may not realise this but at the time I refused to talk about the army stuff,” Roman grimaced as he sucked in a long swallow of whiskey letting the earthy flavour roll over his tongue.

“The Mark stuff,” Mike murmured quickly.

“Yeah, your mother dragged that out of me eventually, only after Elliot pitched up again though,” Roman nodded slowly. “I couldn’t see how I was that Roman and also the Roman who your mother loved. It didn’t make sense to me that she could be with the person who’d done so much ‘bad stuff’ so I showed her a Roman that was different. Except of course, she already knew most of it and just waited for me to be able to talk about it.”

“I felt the same in some respects.” Mike said finally noting that the pair of them had finished their drinks. “Like how what I did out there I can’t really tell Danni but at the same time I’m not ashamed of it. I just feel that Danni wanted me to not be a soldier because she doesn’t want to deal with that aspect of my personality.”

“It wasn’t like that with your…”

“I know it wasn’t exactly like that with my mother. She accepted your boundaries even if a few times she tested them. But Danni, she doesn’t even let me talk about those days. She doesn’t want to meet any of my army buddies,” Mike stated slowly.

“Well of course not, who knows what they could be like after all she has met Jacko and Pete.”

Mike chuckled at the joke before lifting a hand to wipe his face.

“I want to marry her.”

“I know son,” Roman grinned. “I want to marry your mother.”

“Again? Are you out of your mind?”

Roman laughed before standing and collecting the whiskey. He poured it into their glasses and took another sip before speaking again. “She doesn’t want that, so we compromise.”

“There isn’t one for me and Danni.”

Mike looked into the depths of his glass and swirled the liquid around the glass. He watched the dark amber liquid clinging to the side for a few seconds before slipping back down and morphing back with the remaining liquid. He took a long swallow and looked at Roman.

“But Danni, how do I fix her?”

“Now that you’ve picked up from me. With depression there isn’t a fix.”

“I know, I didn’t mean fix her, I meant this. How do I get her from hating me to accepting who I am? And moving forward?”

“Maybe you need to move out of the poolhouse and become independent.”

“You just want me to move out of here, old man,” Mike chuckled at the expression on Roman’s face before he grinned. “I pay Mother rent.” He added quietly.

“What?” Roman choked on his drink.

“Always have done, didn’t want anyone to know.” Mike shrugged carelessly. “She didn’t want the money of course, so I pay it into a savings account for the kids.”

“She never said a word.”

“She wouldn’t.”

“Yeah, but we did a financial statement for the divorce.”

Mike nodded.

“I know, she told me. We talked about if I should tell you because it wasn’t benefiting her directly.”

“I think your mother and I are going to be having words.” Roman muttered standing up and going over to the fridge. He took out a couple of beers and put them on the table before collecting the menu for the Chinese takeaway. Scanning it as he sat down he selected what he wanted and handed it over to Mike for him to make his choice.

“I don’t want to cause any friction between you,” Mike said slowly.

Roman shot him a look and grinned.

“It’s cool son, I just didn’t know. I think I should have done.”

“But well I didn’t want you to know. I didn’t want you to feel like, well like I didn’t believe that you were capable of looking after everyone. Money, well,” Mike frowned as he used the word ‘well’ again in the same sentence. He put it down to the whiskey and grinned at the relief he didn’t teach English at Summer Bay High. “it’s been a thing between you and Mum since you were first married. You didn’t like not buying her stuff.”

Roman muttered something under his breath even as he nodded at Mike’s words.

“It wasn’t that,” although Roman admitted to himself that there was some truth there. He hated it when Ella wore designer stuff around him because he knew that even at his smartest he wasn’t a match for her. He frowned disguising his discomfort by taking a long swallow of the beer. “Maybe,” he groaned.

“See, old man.”

“Still you both should have told me.”

“Egg fried rice and sweet and sour pork.”

Roman grunted at the change in conversation before he picked up his phone and placed the order.

“You haven’t spoken about Jennie.”

Mike paled and looked at the way his hand had tightened around the beer bottle at the mention of the little girl’s name.

“Until the paternity is decided Danni won’t let me near her.”

“You could push that.”

Mike shook his head.

“No, I think she needs to get into a routine with her and realise she is a good mother.” Mike stopped talking as a knock sounded at the door and looked up in surprise, he hadn’t realised how long they had been talking, obviously long enough for their food order to arrive. He stood and went over to answer it accepting the order and carrying it back to the table afterwards. He motioned for Roman to remain seated as he sorted out plates and cutlery and served up the food, grabbing another couple of beers in the process. He sat back at the table and began eating before looking at the other man.

“She’s doing ok,” Roman murmured. “Sorting out her shifts and getting childcare arranged. She works hard.”

“I know. Her colleagues from the Travel Agency loved her.”

“Maybe she needs to go back to that; after all she does have qualifications in Travel and Tourism.”

Mike nodded.

“I don’t think she’s even put her CV out there. I know there are a couple of Travel Agencies in Yabbie Creek she could look into.”

Mike looked at Roman and nodded and then grinned at the other man.

“You do realise that if she knew we were talking about her like this she’d kill us,” he told him before stabbing a piece of pork with his fork and lifting it to his mouth.

“Now that she gets from her mother,” Roman commented.

Mike nodded again his laden fork pausing halfway to his mouth, a light appearing in his eyes.

“What is that look for?”

“What? Oh..” Mike grinned suddenly. “I think I’ve just thought of a solution to my problem.”

“Mike,” Roman said warningly catching the look on the other man’s face.

“If you were convinced that Mum wanted to get married again but she’s just nervous about it what would you do?” Mike asked suddenly.

“I’d probably persuade her… woah. Mike, no!” Roman gasped.

“Exactly Dad!” Mike laughed softly, “Exactly.”


“I’m going to arrange a wedding.”

Chapter One

Mike looked at the last of the pile of wedding magazines he’d bought and then at the list he’d drawn up on his pc. He’d used a spreadsheet programme and worked out that he could complete everything in six weeks. The budget he was fudging a little, according to the magazines he was about to spend a small fortune for one day. Danni already had her dress and shoes so that was one expense he didn’t need to worry about. He realised he was frowning again and eased his expression. It wasn’t like someone was forcing him to do this, he muttered silently to himself, he wanted to be married, and to Danni. He couldn’t imagine being married to anyone else; despite his penchant for blondes early on in his dating life which he had no doubt his mother would remind him off at some point on his wedding day.

His Dad had recommended that he draft in help for this little project of his and that was why he was expecting his sister Nicole to come over. He looked at his watch and gave a grin as a knock at the door sounded. Standing up and stretching her moved over to open the door.

“Alright annoying one, what do you want?” Nicole murmured.

“Come in,” Mike said quickly glancing over her shoulder to the empty street behind her. Not that he expected her to pitch up with a camera crew or something but still.

Nicole stepped daintily over the threshold of her father’s house and walked into the lounge. Mike knew that she’d only been there a handful of times and must have still found it weird that Roman wasn’t with Mum anymore. He was about to say something about that and check that she was ok before he noticed that she’d caught sight of the stack of wedding magazines on the table and was giving him a look.

“Dad isn’t dating anyone is he?” She asked him looking pensive.

“No,” Mike chuckled, “Let me get you a drink.”

“Coffee please,” Nic murmured and moved over to the long cream sofa and sat down. She crossed her ankles and perched there expectantly.

Mike quickly made a pot of coffee and poured it out before he walked over to the sofa and sat next to Nic, placing the cups on the table in front of them.

“First, I need you to swear this a secret,” he began.

“Oh no, Dad’s seeing someone!” She gasped out.

“Nic, this isn’t about Dad,” Mike murmured quickly. He needed to steer the conversation away from their parents before he blurted out that they were seeing each other again. Although why it had to be such a big secret he wasn’t that sure. Maybe this family better work on not keeping things to themselves so much in future.

“Then who…” she paused and looked from the magazine to him and then back to the magazines again, “You and Danni?” she squealed out.

“Yeah, but Nic,” Mike tried to interrupt Nic’s excited squealing.

“Why didn’t she tell me? Oh I need to text Belle…”

“Nicole!” Mike half-shouted trying to get the other woman’s attention.

“What?” Nic muttered her face flushing red.

“Danni doesn’t know, it’s a surprise,” he said in a calmer tone of voice.

“Oh,” Nic’s mouth formed a perfect round ‘o’ shape.

“I know things are up in the air at the moment, especially with Jennie but all I want to do is marry Danni. If I leave things to her then she’ll keep finding excuses not to set a date, not to marry me.”

“Ok,” Nic said slowly.

“So I’m arranging a wedding,” Mike outlined his plan.

“For you and Danni?”

“Did you need the clarification?” Mike shot back.

“Yes, for all I know you and Dad could have cooked this up to get Ella to marry him again,” Nic murmured giving Mike a smirk.

“Yeah, pretty sure that isn’t going to happen,” Mike told her.

He gave her what he hoped was an innocent expression in an attempt to get her to change the subject. He didn’t want to get caught up discussing the parents and their current arrangements, and felt his face flushing as he remembered having to let his mother in during the middle of the night and then hearing laughter drifting down from upstairs as they obviously got er… comfortable.

“Dammit, can’t you drop hints or something?”

“Nicole can you focus here please? I’m the one asking for help. That alone should have you crowing for months,” he murmured.

“Oh it will do annoying one, when I’m not supposed to keep it secret,” Nic promised. She leaned forward and picked up her cup and took a sip of her coffee before winking at him.

“Love you too, Blondie,” Mike murmured sipping from his own cup.

A few minutes passed before Nic looked back at the wedding magazines stacked up on the table.

“So what have you got in mind?” She asked.

“Danni’s favourite colour is violet so I want to use hues of pink and violet in the flowers. I don’t want a massive guest list, just us really.”

“Pink and violet?”

“Is that a problem?” Mike muttered frowning at her.

“Well it’s a bit yucky,” Nic pouted.

“I was thinking pastel colours,” Mike thought back to the magazines he’d been pouring through over the past couple of days.

“Yeah, do you really think Danni is the type to like pastels?” Nic was asking him.

“Yes,” he shot back feeling a little stung. What if he got this wrong? Suddenly he was filled with self-doubt. When Danni had first moved into the house with them she’d had her room decorated with blacks and reds and all manner of gothic overtones. Maybe he should aim for a gothic wedding? Groaning he looked at Nic and finally shook his head. “No, we’re going with pink and lilac,” he decided.

“Show me what you’ve decided then Superbrain,” Nic said eventually.

Mike nodded and led his sister over to the table and began opening wedding magazines at the pages he’d marked showing Nic the pictures of the bouquets and flower arrangements and then the other things he’d looked at.

“Obviously some things we won’t be able to source,” he muttered, “but do you think we can do this?”

“So let me just think for a minute, you want to arrange a surprise wedding for you and Danni and have all the family there with a few guests and not arouse suspicion amongst your siblings or the parents in what?” Nic said slowly.

“What? Oh I was thinking six weeks,” Mike muttered.

“Oh my god Mike, are you insane? Six weeks?” Nic frowned, and even though a line creased her forehead it was a perfect line. “We better get started!”

In that single moment Mike was more scared of his sister than all the bad guys he’d faced in his army days but he’d decided that this was the only way to get Danni to commit to him so he wasn’t going to back out now. Despite the sudden urge to put on Kevlar.

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My Mikey! A whole fic about Danni and Mike just makes me the happiest person ever! I love this and I have to admit I am glad Nicole is involved, their banter is just too funny. Have I told you how much I love you for writing a fic about Mike? Literally this is the best thing ever and I truly am so looking forward to reading a lot more about these two! :D

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Six weeks to arrange a wedding that is quite ambitious, especially when the Bride hasn't got an clue it's happening. Good luck to Mike, having Nicole there to help out should be good fun. I'm half expecting Mike and his guests to be wearing some sort of high end designer suits by the end of this. :)

Good Start look forward to more.

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  • 3 months later...

Chapter 2

Mike entered the poolhouse and looked around at the pristine surfaces and the tidiness of the place. Danni was never this neat and she had a job and a baby to take care off so he wondered when she began to develop this cleaning bug.

“I’ll just be a minute,” she called out from the bedroom sounding breathless. For a second he wondered if she was storing all the clutter in the bedroom and that was why the lounge was so clean and tidy.

“Danni, can you hurry up?” He called back having distracted himself with thoughts of her in their old bedroom.

“Okay, okay,” he heard muttered and then she walked out of the bedroom.

There was something different about her, he thought suddenly. She seemed to be more confident and he was glad but then felt a shiver go through him. What if she’d changed her mind about wanting to be with him, especially as he’d just paid out a huge non-refundable deposit for a marquee?

“Danni, you have the results,” he said slowly. The whole reason he was there was to get the results of the paternity tests for Jennie.

“Yes, they are on the table,” she murmured walking around him and heading into the kitchenette and putting on the kettle.

Mike looked to her for a moment before he walked over and picked up the envelope. He noticed immediately that she hadn’t opened it and he wondered about that too before he ripped open the back flap and drew out the folded papers. Opening them up he scanned the science bit before reading the results.

“What does it say?”

He frowned at Danni’s question. “She’s mine,” he answered.

“Okay,” Danni murmured slowly.

“It still doesn’t excuse the lies Danni,” he pointed out.

“Fine,” she muttered as she made the coffee over the other side of the room.

He could have told her he didn’t want to calmly drink coffee with her as they discussed visitation, he could have moved over to her and reassured her that he loved her. Heck, they had been getting close again over the past few weeks thanks to Mother, but they still had things to sort through. Danni still had things to work though, he amended silently. She was so afraid of rejection that she had to get it in first so she was the one that was still in control. He frowned again as he realised the extent of her fear almost leading to paranoia. Was it his job to reassure her over and over again, perhaps reaching the point where he couldn’t do it anymore?

“We should discuss…”

“You can see her…” they said at the same time.

“Go on,” he encouraged.

“Tuesdays and Thursdays?”

“Thanks,” he said not altogether un-sarcastically.

“And weekends,” she continued.

“You forget, I don’t want to be a part time father, I’m not going to go through what Roman is going through right now,” he shot back.

“What are you saying?”

He heard the fear returning to her voice and silently cursed, she was obviously wondering if he were going to go for full custody. He couldn’t do that with his job, not because he couldn’t get help and childcare but well, Jennie deserved better. Now if he were still studying something, he could just about manage to be the full time carer for his daughter, giving her the attention that she deserved.

“I’m saying I want more than just a couple of hours visitation every now and then,” he stated, “I’ve already missed a lot of her development, not just because of this,” he waved the paper around in emphasis of his words, “but because of your post-natal depression.”

“I wondered if you were going to drag that up,” Danni muttered turning and facing him.

“Are you wanting an argument here Danni? Because I can certainly give that to you. I can also go to lawyers and make things official.”

Danni blanched at his words.

“You know I don’t want that,” she stuttered, “What happened to us being able to talk to each other?”

“You are asking me that question?”

“Yes, I’m asking,” she paused and looked at the cups in front of her before pushing one towards him, “I really want to know.”

Mike looked down at the cup for a few moments before he took hold of it and moved to sit down all too aware that Danni was following him.

“You decided that you were going to keep what happened with Brett a secret,” he told her trying with difficulty to keep the hurt out of his voice, “If you’d actually told me things would have been different, we wouldn’t be here now,” he added.

“Would we be anywhere?”

“Yes,” he met her gaze which was difficult because she was looking anywhere except at him.

“So is this.. us, are we able to be fixed?”

“Right now? I don’t know how to answer that question.”

“Okay,” Danni spent a long time drinking from her cup before she looked at him again.

“I do know that we don’t have to rush things,” he murmured knowing that was a lie. Six weeks was kind of rushing things. It was going to be Christmas wedding to be exact. He felt his phone buzz in his pocket as he sat there and knew that it was Nic with another suggestion or a website he just had to look at now and he sighed wondering if Roman’s suggestion that he bring Nicole in on his plans was not some kind of revenge for all the times he gave the other man a hard time.

“Does that mean we.. can get through this?”

He hated the uncertain note in her voice and the way he had to play things down, even though he knew he wanted to marry her and spend the rest of his life with her he still needed to work through their trust issues. He frowned for like the millionth time as he thought about the comparisons between what his mother and Roman were going through and his and Danni’s relationship.

“I think so, but it’s just …”

“You don’t have to tell me it’s going to take time,” Danni muttered.

She probably would have said more to him but Jennie emitted a sharp cry and she bolted upright her eyes shooting over to the room they used as a nursery.

Mike felt a mixture of emotions. He wanted to go to Jennie, he wanted to comfort Danni, and he wanted to… leave. Yeah, he wanted to run away and just not deal with any of these emotions.

“I better go and see to her, do you…” Danni paused and looked at him.

“I have to go, I’ll call you tomorrow. Perhaps we can do lunch at the diner,” he murmured before turning around and vaulting out of the poolhouse and practically sprinting up towards the main house.

It wasn’t how he wanted to leave things. Heck, it wasn’t how he even imagined the conversation going, as soon as he heard Jennie he felt himself panicking. He knew that he’d been pulling away from his daughter for a long time not just because of the complication of Brett but because Danni had been pushing him out since her birth. He could understand some of it, Brett possibly being her father, but the other side of it? Well that was complex and no doubt due to the fact that Jennie came too early, they had nothing prepared for her, not even a crib.

Pulling his phone out of his pocket he read Nic’s text and frowned again. Dammit, he’d have worry lines if this kept up. The dresses he’d picked out for the bridesmaids were no longer available so he’d have to select another colour. Maybe the pink wasn’t the best colour scheme. Checking the time he dialled Nic’s number.

“Yeah it’s me, no, I know, I got your message,” he listened to what Nic was saying before speaking again, “We’ll just have to come up with another plan. I don’t know right now, look, let’s meet tomorrow and sort it out.”

He was so focused on what Nic was saying that he didn’t notice Danni stepping back and retreating inside the poolhouse having overheard half a conversation. If he had, he would have known that the small snippet of chat although innocent seemed to lend itself all kinds of connotations when overheard.

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