Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/1749078-Dance-with-Me
Rated: 13+ · Short Story · Drama · #1749078
A short story based on a dream I had. Miss you, Luke!

         I walk into the old, graceful building. It smells musty, like old books, and I smile. I smooth my black dress and tuck my long hair behind my ears. I take my camera out of its case, and then walk to the large double doors at the end of the lobby. I show the usher my ticket and he takes me to my seat, the third row from the stage. I snap a few pictures of the stage and then, the lights dim as the stage itself is lit up. The orchestra starts to play and you stride confidently onto the stage. You look so handsome with your long hair pulled back and you dressed in your black tux. Your eyes scan the crowd and the smallest, briefest of smiles touches your face when our eyes meet. Then, you take a deep breath and start your first monologue.

         The play goes beautifully, as I knew it would, despite your moanings and groanings. I am not the only one to rise to my feet after the final curtain. You bow with your fellow actors and then grin and wave at me. I wave back and make my way out of the crowd. You are waiting for me at the backstage door and with a little nod to the security guard, you lead me backstage.

         “You did great.” I tell you to break the awkward silence of our first real meeting. You shrug self-depreciatingly.

         “Zhank you. I am velly glad zhat you could come. Come is ze right word, no?” you say in your thick Italian accent.

         “So am I. And yes. Come is right.” I return with a smile, placing my hand in yours so I won't get lost in the crush of people and props backstage. You smile sweetly and squeeze my hand. I smile back and you start to talk about everything backstage. The elderly gentleman who played Hamlet's father stops us and starts jabbering away at you in Italian. You talk quickly back. I smile as I listen to those foreign syllables roll smoothly off your tongue. Until, anyway, I hear you mention my name. I look up quickly and the elderly gentleman smiles at me.

         “Hello.” He says slowly, offering his hand. I shake it and smile. “Horatio.”

         “Hello, Horatio.” I reply with a smile. He smiles back and we walk on. “What did you tell him?” I ask you, once we're out of ear-shot. You shrug, a small smile tugging at your mouth.

         “He vanted to know who you ver. I told him zhat you were my friend from America.”

         “That's it?” I demand, knowing full well that there had to be more that was said, for you had talked to him for much longer than all that. You shrug with a crooked grin.

         “More or less.” I roll my eyes and let it go. You stop and talk a few more times with the other actors, and then we are standing by the back door.

         “So. Zhat is it.” You tell me, motioning to the small backstage that you just took me through. “Not velly interesting.” I laugh.

         “No. I think it is very interesting.” I reply.

         “Vhat vould you like to do now?”

         I shrug. “I dunno. What do you usually do after a performance?”

         “Go home and talk to you.” You reply with a grin. I laugh.

         “Okay then. Well. Do the other actors ever like have an after-party or something?”

         “Yes. But you vould not vaunt to go to zhat. Trust me.”

         “All right. Well. What do you want to do?” I finally ask. “You're the one who lives here, remember?”

         “Okay. Okay.” You tell me. “Vell... Ve could go downtown. Cagliari is velly pretty at night.”

         “Well then. Let's go.” You grin, grab your suit jacket, and push open the back door, motioning for me to follow. I pull my black shawl over my shoulders and then take your arm as you lead me through the streets. We walk, talking animatedly, catching up on all that has gone by since we last talked... a week ago.

         “So. Vhat are you doing in Italy?” you ask me. I roll my eyes. I've already told you at least five times now.

         “My orchestra was asked to play at the Tuscany Cooking School's villa. My conductor went there for lessons several years ago. So, we were asked to hold a concert for their hundred-something anniversary. It was rather boring really.”

         “Tuscany? Tuscany is not near here.”


         “So... how did you bring here?”

         “Come here. And I took two buses and a cab.”

         “Oh. All today?”


         “But... vy?”

         “So I could finally see you act, that's why.”

         “But it is a long vay to travel, no? And by yourself?”

         “I didn't mind it so much.”

         “Oh. Okay.” You stop outside of one of the vendors and I stop with you. You look critically through the flowers he is selling, and select two roses. You pay for them and then turn to me, breaking off part of the long stem of one of them. You catch me by surprise when you gently slip it behind my ear. I smile. I then get into my purse and bring out a small hair clip. I take the rose and a little bit of the front of my hair and pin it in place. You smile and tuck the other rose into your jacket pocket. We continue walking in silence for a little while. I notice that we are heading to where I can hear music. We seem to be following the music until we reach a small plaza. Everything is lit with the golden glow of streetlights.

         A small band plays under one of the arches and a space in the middle of the plaza has been cleared and several couples are dancing. I smile and grab your hand.

         “Come on!” I call and half-drag you to the dance floor. You protest, laughing the whole way.

         “I cannot dance!” You exclaim several times.

         “So? That's why I will teach you. Come on. Please?” I ask. A smile breaks on your face and you give a theatrical sigh.

         “All right. All right. Fine. But I am varning you...”

         “Your warning is heard. Now. Come on. You at least know a proper dance hold, right?”

         You sigh again, rolling your eyes, and instead of answering, take my hand, and place your other hand at the base of my shoulder. “Yes.” Is your only answer.

         “See?” I say with a  little laugh. “It's not that hard. You're already half-way there. Now. This is a waltz. You hear the rhythm?”

         “Yes.” You say and start humming along with the music.

         “Right. So you step with your left foot, okay? You step to the right.” You follow my directions. “And to your right again. And forward. And again. See? You are dancing.” Once you start to get the hang of it, you smile and start to whirl me across the cobblestones, still keeping time to the music. Then, the song ends and we stop dancing. I smile at you and you smile back. “See? You can dance. You are a natural.” You laugh and another waltz starts up.

         “Again?” you ask. I nod and we start to dance again.

         “Uh... generally, when you dance, you talk to your partner.” I tell you.

         “Vell. If I start talking, I vill probably step on your foot.” You point out in return.

         I grin. “Okay then. Don't talk.” You grin back at me and we finish the dance. After that dance, there is another waltz, and we go to one of the vendors to get something to drink. After that waltz, a Latino song starts and I smile. “Come on! We have to dance to this one!” I exclaim and grab your hand, tugging you to the floor.

         “But it is not a valtz!” You exclaim.

         “No. I'm going to teach you the salsa. It's really easy. Come on!”

         “All right, all right. Fine. Fine. I'll dance the salsa. Vhatever zhat happens to be!”

         “It's a Latino dance! Seriously. If you can move your hips, you can dance the salsa!”

         “If I can move my hips?” You repeat, incredulously. I laugh at the look on your face.

         “Yes. Come on. I'll show you.” And I do. If it's possible, you're even better at this dance than the waltz. You picked up on it very quickly, and are now rolling your hips and twirling me around and dancing like you were born doing the salsa. I laugh and we dance for a little while longer. Than, we both leave the floor again and go back for our drinks. Several more songs go by and I tell you about the dances – foxtrot, rumba, and tango.

         “I could probably dance ze foxtrot e maybe ze rumba too. But not ze tango. No.” You tell me, firmly shaking your head no to emphasize your point.

         I laugh. “That's all right. I don't dance the tango either.”

         “You do not?”


         “But vy?”

         I shrug. “I don't know. I just don't.” I tell you, decidedly not looking at your face.

         “But you vould be good at it. Velly good.” You tell me, and I chance a glance at your face. You are smiling and nodding. I shake my head and roll my eyes.

         “No. But... what makes you say that?” I finally ask. A blush deepens on your swarthy skin.

         “It – it reminds me...  vell... it sort of reminds me of you.”

         “Of me?” I repeat incredulously, my own face getting hot. You nod. “But... how does that remind you of me?” You are quiet for a moment, and then you smile.

         “Because it is beautiful. Like you.” I fight the urge to cover my face with my hands in embarrassment.

         “Well... If you say so...”

         “I do.” You reply. The tango ends and then a slow, romantic tune starts. You give me a large smile and take both my hands. “Now. Zhis is somezhing I can dance to. Vill you dance vith me?” I look down.

         “I – I don't slow dance.” I tell you.

         “Vy not?”

         “Because I don't!” I snap. You sigh with a half smile and put your hand on my shoulder.

         “I am surprised. I would zink zhat a gell like you. Who vould travel a long vay by herself to see her friend act. And who vould teach her friend how to dance ze waltz and ze salsa would not be afraid to dance slow vith the same friend.”

         “I am not afraid.” I tell you, not looking at your face. You put your hand under my chin, forcing me to meet your eyes.

         “Zhen dance with me.”

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