Shego's higher than average body temperature made her the perfect cuddle toy on cool mornings. Kim made certain the older woman was awake by running her finger nails gently up the green woman's spine. “We need to talk. We've got to start planning the wedding.”
“It's bad luck to plan now,” Shego grumbled and attempted to go back to sleep.
“You're being ridiculous, you're the one who says it will be a real wedding, even if the state doesn't recognize it. But you aren't doing any planning. We could have just eloped in Canada where it would even be legal. But, no, you turned me down. I feel like you're getting cold feet again.”
Shego sighed and rolled over to face Kim, “Look, Princess, it's not like that. My trial is coming up in a month. If they stick me in prison there's really no point in planning for a wedding.”
“But if you don't go to prison there will be a wedding we are going to be, like, completely unprepared.”
“I'm worried that planning will jinx us.”
“Well, jinx me. If we get everything all planned I'll get thrown in prison.”
“Oh great, how come I didn't find out your weaknesses until after we fell in love?”
“Yeah, Kryptonite, emptying the diaper pail, and a fear of jinxes and commitment.”
“I don't see you wanting to empty the diaper pail either.”
“Okay, point taken. Now, you have a choice this morning. You can call the rabbi and set up an appointment or you can drive your lover to insane heights of pleasure.”
“Fine, I'll call the rabbi and have her come over. But if I get sent to prison it's all your fault.”
“No, on that I know you're wrong. If you get sent to prison it will be your own fault.” As soon as the words were out of her mouth Kim regretted them. The worried look in Shego's eyes told her the older woman really was frightened. Kim grabbed her, and held her tight. “We're going to be all right. Everything is going to be all right. But only if we start working on this.”
“You really think so?”
“I really think so. By the way, that was a test. You flunked.”
“What do you mean?”
“I said you had a choice, call the rabbi or drive me crazy. The right answer was, 'Why can't I do both?' Here, let me give you an example…”
Much later in the morning Shego set up an appointment with the rabbi for Sunday afternoon.
Before Sunday Kim spoke with both Ron and Monique. She caught Ron first, while he was working in the kitchen and had no clear line of retreat.
“You know Shego and I are talking about a wedding in February.”
“That's what you've been telling me. It's still a little weird.” Ron laughed, “You know, if I heard five years ago Kim Possible would be having a Jewish wedding I would have bet money I would be standing under the chuppah with her instead of Shego.”
“Two questions, well three. First are you okay with this?”
“I guess so, I've had a couple years to adjust now.”
“Second, what's a hoppa?”
“A chuppah, give it a hard H, like Chanukah. If you're going for a Jewish wedding you will probably get married under one, it's the wedding canopy.”
“Better make this four questions, Ron.”
“You've only asked two.”
“Give me time. Old question three just got moved to new question four. The new question three, when we meet with the rabbi can you sit in with us? I may need you for Jewish to Christian translation.”
“When is the meeting?”
“Sunday at three.”
“No problem. I'll bake a pie. Now, what is question four?”
“Would you be my best man?”
Ron looked stunned. “Would I what?”
“I'm not really sure how this works. I've never been married before. Do you have attendants at a Jewish wedding?”
“Usually. It's kind of like other weddings. The bride usually has her friends as attendants, the groom has his.”
“Well, we've got two brides here. I want a best man, and I want him to be you.”
Ron thought for a minute, then grinned. “Okay, KP, you got yourself a best man.”
The next day Kim noticed Monique's door was open and poked her head in the room. “Hey, got a minute?”
“Sure thing,” her friend answered, pushing away a management text. “Whassup?”
“I've been hitting Shego with a stick to start wedding plans. She's just about useless with her trial worries. And I think we're both clueless about Jewish weddings, I've never been to one. But Ron tells me we get attendants. Will you be my maid of honor?”
Monique thought for a minute. “Kim, I love you like a sister. But I've got some problems with this wedding. You know that, don't you?”
“Yeah, but you'd do it for a sister.”
“Probably,” Monique smiled, “but you've got to remember. Marriage is very important to me. It's to be done seriously. I'm not sure about two women getting married.”
“Do you believe Shego and I really want to be together?”
“I believe that.”
“Then shouldn't we be able to make that kind of a statement in a special ceremony?”
The black woman thought for another minute. “Okay, but two things before I commit. First, are you going to make me wear some stupid bride's maid dress?”
“No. I want you up there with me. Wear whatever you want. Wear a clown costume, but I want you up there with me.”
Monique sighed, “That answer just cost you points. I've got another condition. I don't want this wedding to be a joke. I'll only be a part of it if you are doing it seriously. Clown costume? Girl, do you want a wedding or a circus?”
“I'm sorry. You know I wasn't serious. My point was that you are my friend. It's important to me that you're up there beside me. I have faith that anything you wear will be beautiful and appropriate. Just try to not to look too much better than the brides, okay?”
“That's going to be hard when you're as hot as I am.”
“So, you're in?”
“I'm in, GF.”
“Thanks,” Kim said, giving her friend a hug. “The rabbi will be here on Sunday afternoon to talk with us about the wedding. Do you want to sit in on the discussion?”
“Sure. Now let me get back to management.”
On Sunday afternoon, while Ron cut an apple pie and poured coffee and milk, Kim, Shego, Rabbi Ruth, and Monique took seats at the kitchen table.
“Okay! Let's plan a wedding.”
The rabbi opened a notebook and got out a pen, then turned to the redhead. “Kim, before we start, I have a few things I want to be clear.”
“Okay, rabbi, I just want to roll on this before Sharon tries to back out.”
“First, in the eyes of the state this is not a wedding. For a wedding to take place I would need you two to have a license. Actually I can perform a wedding for man and woman without one, and the couple is legally married by state law, but I am in violation of the law for doing it. Since the state doesn't recognize same sex marriage I just want it clear this is a Kiddushin.”
“A religious ceremony of union. Sometimes widows have a Kiddushin so they don't lose their late husband's pension. The religious community recognizes it, but the state does not.”
“Skirting the law, I think I like this,” Shego grinned.
“And while I would be perfectly happy to perform the ceremony for two Jews I will only do this for you two if I know that Kim will respect and support Sharon's commitment to Judaism.” The rabbi looked at Shego, “How has she done this last year?”
“Well, rabbi…” Shego hesitated and Kim glared at her. Shego smiled and finished, “She's done wonderfully.”
“Then I'm going to accept the principle of the Ger Toshav and perform a Kiddushin.” Seeing three startled faces she explained, “The Ger Toshav translates as resident alien. It means someone who shares values with Judaism. I think I already told you that same sex marriage probably has broader support in Judaism on a theological level than marriage with a Christian, but on a practical level the marriage to a non-Jew is far more common.”
“So we get to break two social taboos?” Shego asked.
“You don't need to sound quite so happy about it,” Kim chided her.
“What? I shouldn't sound happy at the prospect of marriage to the woman of my dreams?”
“I'm not sure how detailed we should try for today,” Kim said. “We may just want to hit some of the big points, things we have to get moving on to be ready. Shego is going on trial in a month and she's a little preoccupied--”
“I know, I was talking with her defense attorney. Okay, we won't get to detailed on the service proper today, but there certainly are things you need to be working on.”
“Well, an obvious one is where do you want to have the ceremony? Are you talking about a large ceremony or a small one?”
“We're thinking pretty small. Maybe a couple dozen friends and family. It's going to be private. Can we do it here or do you have a suggestion?”
“You can have it in your home. It wouldn't be the first I've done in a house.”
“Where are you thinking, Kim? Top floor? Entryway? Living Room? Two things we've got plenty of in this place -- space and heating bills.”
“The sun room would be great if it and the library were in better shape.”
“Yeah, and I'd like a genie to give me three wishes -- and there's about the same chance of my getting that as the sun room being ready by February fourteenth.
The rabbi jotted a few words in her notebook, “Oh, and what time?”
“Two?” Shego suggested. No one argued and two went into the notes also.
“Now,” the rabbi continued, “if you really want this to be a Jewish wedding you need a ketubah.”
Kim nudged Ron, “It's a wedding contract. The Jews invented the pre-nup.” He told her, then he spoke to the rabbi. “But they can't get a kosher ketubah.”
“Kosher ketubah?” asked Shego.
“He just means one with traditional wording. There are a lot of variations in ketubot. But tell me, Mr. Stoppable. Why can't Shego and Kim have the traditional ketubah?”
“'Cause it says they will be married according to the tradition of Moses, and Kim is a shiksah.”
The rabbi smiled, “So, who did Moses marry?”
“Uh, I forget her name. She was the daughter of Jethro--”
“And what tribe was Jethro from?”
Ron paused for a minute, then his lower jaw dropped. “Moses married a shiksah?”
The rabbi smiled and nodded.
“You know, rabbi, you should have been a rabbi.”
“Thank you, Mr. Stoppable.” Ruth turned back to Kim and Shego, “I also suspect you don't want the clause guaranteeing the bride's virginity. The traditional payment in case of divorce, Jews invented alimony too, hasn't been big enough in more than a thousand years, and I insist on a Lieberman clause.”
“I don't think I know that one,” Ron said.
“The Lieberman clause says if they divorce a get must be issued or the spouse who wants one can receive it from the Bet Din, a rabbi's court.”
“I think this is more complicated than I want to get into,” Kim interjected.
“I'd rather talk marriage than divorce right now,” Shego added.
The rabbi laughed, “You're right. One thing to consider, many ketubot are limited edition works of art. I've got some catalogues in my office; you should pick out a design you like. You can often hire the artist to fill in the personal information, like your names, with calligraphy and then you two, the witnesses, and I sign it at the wedding.
The rabbi went down to the next point on her agenda, “Shego, if you are wanting a Jewish ceremony I am assuming you want a chuppah.”
The pale woman looked confused. “I, uh, what is that?”
“It's a wedding canopy, we get married under it,” Kim said.
Shego looked startled and the rabbi laughed, “Someone is doing her homework.”
Kim smiled, licked her index finger and made an imaginary tally mark in the air, “Oh, yeah. Score one for the Methodist.”
“I'll assume you will want it hanging from the ceiling.”
Shego smiled and nodded, wondering what she was agreeing to.
The rabbi turned to Kim, “Do you want to explain the symbolism of the chuppah to Sharon?”
Kim turned red and Ron chuckled, which brought him a glare. “It represents you two setting up house together,” he whispered loudly enough for everyone to hear.”
“It, uh, represents our setting up life together.”
Shego had some trouble controlling her laughter, “Do we get to take that point away from the Methodist?”
“No you don't,” Kim snapped, “I knew what it was even if I didn't know what it means.”
Monique spoke up, “I hope you don't think this is weird, but I've never been to a Jewish wedding. At the weddings I've been to the bride comes in with her parents. How does it work at a Jewish wedding, or one where you've got two brides?”
“Oh, oh, let me answer that one!” Ron said, “At a Jewish wedding both sets of parents come in with their kids. So Kim and Shego are set that way.”
“Okay, that answers one question. Are their attendants at a Jewish wedding?”
“If the couple wants them. Kim, Shego, are you planning on attendants?”
“I wasn't sure what Kim thought about that, Ruth. If it was okay with her I was going to ask my brothers Will and Ed to stand up with me,” Shego said.
“We're having them. I've asked Monique to be my maid of honor and Ron has agreed to be best man. “
“Music is not required, but most weddings have some,” the Rabbi told them. “You should think about what you want and whether you want musicians or recordings. If you want live music you'd better get moving on that.”
“I'm on top of it,” Shego informed them. “I found a great string quartet in the music department, two faculty members and two grad students. They've done a lot of weddings.”
Kim gave Shego a smile and a nod. Shego licked her own index finger and added a tally mark in the air, “We're even.”
“Uumm, we need to talk music selection if you want this to be a Jewish wedding.”
“Well, I get a little traditional about two pieces of music, the Wedding March and Here Comes the Bride. We usually don't have them at Jewish weddings.”
“The Wedding March is from the music for A Midsummer Night's Dream by Felix Mendelssohn. He abandoned his Judaism to get a better job. The other is a wedding march from the opera Lohengrin by Richard Wagner. Wagner is none too popular with Jews.”
“So what can we use for a processional?”
“Use your imagination. Those aren't the only two songs in the world.”
“Uh, Rabbi,” Shego began, “I have a recessional in mind. The composer wasn't Jewish, but the text is strictly from the book of Isaiah.”
“Not Wagner or Mendelssohn?”
“I'll go with whatever you have in mind then, I…” The rabbi stopped and glared at Shego. “You wouldn't.”
“You just said I could.”
“Will someone tell me what is going on?” Kim asked.
“You'll hear it after the ceremony,” Shego promised her.
“This woman is impossible, you realize that, don't you?” the rabbi warned Kim.
“She finds my spontaneity endearing,” Shego said.
“I'll stay in touch. We'll see if Kim still finds it endearing by your fifth anniversary.”
The planning went so well that the rabbi had time to give them a fast overview of the ceremony itself. Ruth mentioned that the couple traditionally didn't see each other for a week prior to the wedding.
“I suppose I could move back in with my parents for that week,” Kim suggested.
“Why you?” Shego asked. “There isn't room for the girls there, and I'm worried I'll start off behind in law school. Why don't I rent a motel room?”
“Or, you could move in with my folk for a week -- give them more time to know you.”
“You don't have to decide that now,” the rabbi said. “It is also traditional to fast the day of the wedding until after the ceremony. I suspect you don't want the veiling ritual, where one of you promises to look after and protect the other. The two of you strike me as too independent to want the other to be the head of the household.” She was about to leave when she suddenly remembered, “We should also talk about the seudah--”
“I'm on top of that, rabbi,” Ron interrupted. “It's my wedding present to Kim.”
Kim put her hands into a t-shape, “Time out! Someone needs to explain whatever was just said to the Methodist.”
“The seudah is the party or reception afterwards. You can't have a Jewish ceremony without eating afterwards,” Ron told her. “I'll have one incredible buffet laid out in the dining room--”
“Ron,” the rabbi interrupted, “will this be--”
“Yes, rabbi. It will be kosher. Honestly, I think you and Shego are the only two who will care. But I've found a place with smoked whitefish that it is to die for.”
“You making the cake?” Monique asked. “I love your cake.”
“Yeah, but wedding cake decorating is a pain. I've got a woman in my pastry class who loves that stuff. She's got a little catering business and I'm trading out my services for a party she needs to do in return for the cake.”
The rabbi was putting on her jacket when Ron remembered something, “Oh, wait, who is going to break the glass?”
“Break the glass?” Monique asked.
“Jews have been breaking glasses at weddings for more than a thousand years. There are a lot of stories why. Anyway, by custom it falls to the groom. Since that doesn't apply at this wedding I suggest the Jewish partner assume that role.”
Shego left to show the rabbi to the door. As soon as the two were out of the kitchen Monique turned to Kim, “I've got a new problem.”
“What is it?”
“I don't want to be the only woman attendant up there at the front with three men. Attendants are supposed to be balanced, women on one side, men on the other.”
“Come on, 'Nique, it's two women getting married. Can't you break just a little more with tradition?”
“No, I can't. You've got me out to my limit already, GF, my limit. How about I just drop out and you ask a brother or something.”
Shego had come back into the kitchen, “What's the problem?”
“Monique doesn't want three guys and one woman up front, she says it's too out of balance.”
Shego turned to the black woman, “Please, Monique. It means a lot to both of us to have you up there.”
“Look, guys, I like you. But I want weddings to look traditional. Maybe I'm being unreasonable. But I'm already seven kinds of uncomfortable. I've never seen a Jewish wedding. I don't understand half of what the rabbi said, there are going to be two women up there getting hitched, and three guys and me as attendants is just the straw that broke my back.”
“You want me to step down as best man?” Ron suggested. “Then you could ask Bonnie or someone to stand up with Monique.”
“I want you up there, Ron,” Kim insisted.
“Whoa, wild thought coming out of my brain,” Shego announced, putting her forefingers up on either side of her forehead. “Ron, stand on my side as best man. Then Kim can get Bonnie and someone else for bridesmaids. We have to enlarge the wedding party, but it could work.”
“Shouldn't one of your brothers be best man?” Ron asked.
“Yeah, which one do I pick - Will or Ed? I tell them that you as best man is Kim's idea. That way I'm off the hook and neither one will be mad at me for picking the other.”
“I don't like trading Ron to you,” Kim protested.
“Yeah, but you're risking losing Monique,” Ron pointed out.
Shego turned to the black woman, “What do you say? Will you stay on as maid of honor if Ron is my best man?”
“I suppose,” Monique said slowly. “Look, I’m sorry about making a fuss. Maybe I should just drop out.”
“Don't you dare,” Kim warned her. “I've just traded my best friend to my fiancé for the chance to keep you. The question now is who else to I ask.”
“Girl, you really need to ask if Bonnie wants a spot.”
“Yeah,” Ron agreed.
“I'll vote with them,” Shego said. “You owe her too much not to ask.”
“Yeah, but she's such a 'phob I'm afraid she'll turn me down.”
“You still better ask her first,” Ron warned. “She's your friend even if you make her nervous. I bet she accepts.”
“I'll ask,” Kim agreed. “But even if she says yes I'm not sure who to get for the third spot. I don't feel like I'm close enough to Justine.”
“How about Joss?” Monique suggested.
“Oh, yeah, uncle Slim and aunt Becky will be real happy about that,” Kim muttered to herself.
“I think she'll be about eight months then. I can't risk it,” she sighed. “I'll figure out somebody.”
“What colors are you going with?” Monique asked. “Both in white?”
“Do they qualify for white?”
“Ron!” Kim protested. “It's tradition for first weddings as much as anything.” Then she turned to Shego, “It is your first wedding, right?”
“Yeah, but you know I can't wear white.”
“What do you mean, you can't wear white?” Monique interrupted. “It's a tradition for first weddings. Is this some Jewish thing?”
“Should I go put on one of your nightshirts?” Shego asked Kim.
“Yeah, that should answer Monique's question.”
After Shego left Kim turned back to Monique, “I think I can fit into my Mom's wedding dress. I'd like to wear it if I can.”
“Why is it that Shego can't wear white?”
“You'll see in a minute, Ron. Can you tell me anything about the reception you have in mind?”
They talked about menu and the woman who would be making the cake for a couple minutes, then the door pushed open and Shego walked in, wearing one of Kim's white nightshirts. Monique and Ron both stared. Finally Ron managed to speak to Kim, “So, you're sleeping with Kermit the Frog.”
“I'm not that much a freak,” Shego complained as she sat down at the table. “But, guess what - black and green aren't really my favorite colors. They both tend to make me look pale, and if I wear a dark green you just think some of my color is from my outfit reflecting off me. Put me in white, though, and I really look green because of the contrast.
“Black silk,” Monique suggested. “Maybe a suit sort of cut -- something you could wear in a court room someday. A dark green ruffled tuxedo shirt. It could be kind of a classy look.”
“Sounds like you want me to look groomish,” Shego complained.
“That's funny, you don't look groomish,” Ron laughed. Kim wadded up a paper napkin and threw it at him, bouncing it off his nose. “Well, I think she'll look very Darcy.”
Ron and Monique looked puzzled as Kim and Shego smiled at each other.