(Comprehensive Guide to Short Stories, Critical Edition)

Because of poor weather, Miles Miller and his bride, Franny Crowell Miller, must abandon their hotel reservations in Bardstown, Kentucky, and spend the first night of their honeymoon in the same local hotel in which Miles stayed immediately before his marriage.

The story begins in a locker room of the country club where the bride, Franny, and the country club maid, Bernice, are meeting the groom, Miles, so that the couple may leave for their honeymoon undetected by their guests upstairs in the ballroom. Franny is naïve, untraveled, and possessed of only a finishing school education, but she has a certain self-confidence in the narrow, affluent, country club milieu in which she has been reared. She betrays her skittishness when she mistakenly fears that Miles is not in the locker room to meet her, but the pair are reunited and leave on their wedding trip after Franny hugs the maid Bernice, for whom she has never previously cared.

The locker room scene sets the tone of the story and begins to suggest the reservations that both partners feel going into their marriage. The backgrounds of the bride and groom—she a local girl, he an attractive stranger from California—are woven into the plot, as are the concerns and reservations of the two people as they enter matrimony.

When they arrive at the hotel, the bride imagines that the doorman and bellboys are leering at her in a knowing way, thus underscoring her nervous virginal state. Further...

(The entire section is 606 words.)