Photo: Jamie Squire (Getty Images)

True love! It comes for all of us, if we’re lucky, and if we’re wise enough to recognize it when it does. Usually it’s identifiable only in hindsight. Go ask any happily married couple, and they’ll eagerly and wistfully tell you about the moment when they realized their partner was The One. Oh, that’s easy, one Miami woman will tell you. (Probably more than one Miami woman.) It was definitely the moment he almost got stomped to death by a group of Florida State fans.

Meet Christopher Cheng and Rahysa Vargas, who got married this month a dozen years since first meeting in college. Their NYT Vows column contains one hell of a twist meet-cute.

In September 2006, she was introduced to Christopher Cheng, a fellow University of Miami undergraduate, by mutual friends at a football game against Florida State. She was not intrigued. His face was painted the Miami school colors of orange and green that got streaked in the rain. “We briefly spoke, but since I don’t drink, he found me boring,” Ms. Vargas said. “His attention was on my friend who did drink.”

[...]

[Later,] they started dating four or five nights a week, enjoying Mr. Cheng’s cooking, dining in restaurants and reading together. “I thought he was genuine,” said Ms. Vargas, who later showed her loyalty during another Miami-Florida State football game when Mr. Cheng was beaten by opposition fans in the stands.

“They ganged up on Chris and smashed his face in,” said Mr. Cheng’s mother, Helene Woodward. “Little selfless Rahysa jumped on top of him to save his life.”

Frank Guzman, a friend and groomsman, remembered how “Rahysa dragged his bloody, limp body into the aisle until the police arrived, and he was taken to the hospital.” His injuries included a broken nose, a laceration from lip to chin and contusions on his body and skull.

Holy shit! Congrats to the happy couple.

[NYT, via Rachel Bachman]