Marriage? How could she hear the word and not hear the lisping “mawwage is what bwings us togedder” of the Princess Bride? And having heard that in her mind, how could she take him seriously, at all? Because back when she was watching movies like the Princess Bride (in the middle of Friday afternoon, the roommates all sprawled about an artificially-darkened dorm room, simultaneously hung over and drunk with the giddiness of being 19 and far from home with life still, more or less, served up on a platter before them) marriage was so far from the point as to be not even in the discussion. Marriage was what their parents had, and being smart women but of a generation that took their opportunities for granted, they found nothing wrong with it as a concept (no need to discuss it ad nausum), one of many things to be attained somewhere in a vague and distant future. There was so much to be done first.
She had not wanted marriage, only to know that someday she would in fact be married, to know the ending in advance, as if marriage really were just the happy ending that came on the last page. If the tale went any further than that, it was only in condensed version to tell the reader that the couple ruled wisely, a young prince was born, and peace and prosperity descended on the kingdom for the next many years.
So when he dropped on one knee with a ring and a smile, she conjured up swashbuckling giants and devious dwarfs, ivy-covered towers and endless afternoons—the world was not quite so much on a platter before her, and so she smiled back.