Her partner held her with the utmost care and his movements signified he was very sure of himself. He had a long face with high cheekbones, free of blemishes like the others. His short black hair was gelled up, and he wore a very serious expression. His bright blue eyes, which I realized matched the instructor’s and the other girl dancer, were trained exclusively on his partner.
“Kota, have you noticed they’re all our age?” Sue whispered.
“I did.” I said, sighing in awe as I rested my chin on my hand, feeling content to watch them forever.
“I like that one, over there, dancing with the girl that looks like a model.” she said.
“They all look like models.” I said, trying to pinpoint the one she meant.
“She’s got long black hair. Right there, with the green glittery dress.” she added, but there were two girls with long black hair, and before she’d said what dress she was wearing, I’d looked over at the one wearing red and had been captivated by her partner.
Then suddenly it was like I had tunnel vision, because now I was only seeing him dancing, there was no partner, the music was muffled, and he was moving in slow motion. He was tall and lean, with sharp features. He had a long, sharply angled face with his pale skin pulled taught over his muscular jaws. His chin came to a blunted point and he had lips that seemed almost too dark against his pale white skin. He was wearing a black fedora pulled down to shade his face, but I could see that his hair was a thick dark brown.
The tunnel vision subsided a little, letting me see him twirl his partner, who disgustingly looked like a foreign model, so gracefully he looked like he wasn’t even trying. She was tall and model slim while I was five-five with a petite build, she had long black-brown hair and I had long dirty blonde hair that was currently curly, and while she had deep brown eyes, I had deep green eyes and a button nose. I felt half inadequate and superior to her.
Hussy. She doesn’t deserve him. I suddenly thought, jealously coursing through me. Who does she think she is, dancing with such a pure person as him? He would never get with someone like that, so obviously shallow and clearly in love with herself. He needs someone more down to earth, someone who lives a normal life and doesn’t need to be rich to be loved, someone… like me.
“Kota?” I snapped out of the trance, and let out the breath I realized I’d been holding. “Did you see him?” Sue glanced back over at the dancers and then at me, looking so innocent and excited.
I wanted to point out the guy I saw to her, since we’d always shared our crushes with each other. I felt like she should see him, but then again I didn’t want her to see him. I was suddenly afraid she would fall for him too and desperately wanted to avoid that. “Uh, no. Sorry. Show me again when they stop dancing.” I said and she nodded as we thankfully returned to watching the dancers. I didn’t want to keep my eyes off the one dancer for too long. It was then that I realized I didn’t want anyone to see him. I didn’t want anyone to touch him or see him other than me. I wanted him to be all mine. Forever.
And then it happened. It was so quick; I thought I’d imagined it. For a minute, I thought he had looked at me, just the faintest glimpse of bright eyes. They seemed an odd color, like a red color, but it was probably just the rose on his suit, or the one on his hat. I watched him closely but he didn’t look like he had noticed me at all. He paid me no attention, only keeping his eyes on his partner.
I was feeling like a ravenous animal, feeling all these things about him, but made myself take a deep breath and calm down. For all I know, he could be a jerk. I thought, but then mentally kicked myself hard in the butt for that. How could someone like that be anything less than glorious?
Too soon the song ended and the dancers bowed to their partners and then to us. Again I saw a glimpse of red coming from the area where the dancer was, but he moved his head before I could focus on him. His neck was stiff as he kept it locked in place, hat hiding his face.
Coach Bailey clapped enthusiastically, nodding for us to follow his example. We clapped awkwardly at first and then it turned into a real applause with yells and whistles. The dancers all smiled and bowed again, the one dancer keeping his head down as he waved once and bowed low again.
“Now, since you’ve seen what it looks like, I’d like for us to try.” the Coach smiled encouragingly.
“What? In front of them, are you kidding?” I said in an exasperated whisper to him. I looked sideways at the one dancer still looking down and a nervous chill ran down my spine. If I fell or did anything wrong, which I was sure to do, in front of him I would die of embarrassment. This would be one of those instances you wouldn’t want the guy you liked to see you mess up, but instead see you perfect at. I really didn’t want to do this.
“Yes. Don’t worry; they’re going to be helping you. If it helps, I don’t know how to dance either.” he smiled.
Nervous bubbles suddenly started fizzing in my stomach and looking over to where the dancer was gathered with the others, all of them talking, didn’t make me feel any better. I looked up at the coach pleadingly and he returned it with curiosity and slight surprise. “Kota, why are you so nervous? This isn’t like you.” he said, a little concern starting to come into his eyes.
He was right, this wasn’t like me. I was usually cocky, witty, happy, and oozing self-confidence. So why was I acting like this now? I glanced back over at the dancer and swallowed my nerves before going back to the Coach. “I’ve just never done this before, that’s all.” I said, shrugging and giving him my confident smile.