Dahlia stood in the darkness thinking, worrying her hands, debating her options, and wishing she was still young. Decisions came so easily then but now, she paused laying her forehead against her arm at the window and then finished her thought, now I’m twenty nine. She closed her eyes against stinging tears and swallowed hard.
She couldn’t imagine her life without dance and couldn’t imagine losing Rand either, but this was a choice she had to make. It seemed the only choice and she would have to make it again and again. Dahlia sighed shaking her head when Melinda bounded into the room with hallway light streaming in around her.
“Uh oh,” Melinda said, hitting the light switch.
Again Dahlia closed her eyes asking, “Uh oh. What?”
Melinda sat down at the table digging into her clutch, “Dahlia, you only strike that pose when you’re really upset. What’s up?”
“Nothing,” Dahlia answered.
“Sure. I’m buying that,” Melinda quipped, “You’re standing here in the pitch dark leaning into the window like you want to jump. Sure it’s nothing.”
Dahlia pulled herself upright and went to sit across from her, “I’m old, Melinda. How did this happen? I was eighteen just last week,” Dahlia said, hanging her head in her hands.
“I know but don’t think about it now. You won’t get cut. You’ve got at least a year before you have to worry about that.”
There’s more,” Dahlia whispered, “It’s Rand.”
“Mr. crazy-hot body?”
Dahlia smiled half-heartedly, “Yeah, that’s him.”
“So what is he on your last nerve about,” Melinda asked, laughing, “I’d be happy to take him off your hands!”
“We made love last night and,” her voice trailed off as she thought back.
“And,” Melinda snapped anxiously.
“And he accused me, Melinda. I’m guilty. Oh god, I’m guilty as hell! He said I wasn’t there,” Dahlia stopped short and got up to pour a drink.
“Not there? How the hell do you make love and not be there? Oh! You mean, not present?”
“Bingo,” she answered, pulling two glasses from the cupboard, “And it’s the awful truth. From the moment he asked me out, I’ve Grand jeté with every breath. One minute, I was building to orgasmic crescendo, blissfully lost in his touch, his kiss setting me on fire, and a minute later he asked, ‘Where are you, Dahlia? Where did you go?’ That’s when I realized it.”
“Realized what,” Melinda voiced her confusion, “I Grand jeté into every open door when I’m in love. Hell, that’s how I know when I’m in love!”
“Yea? And do you get lost in thinking about how the turn of your ankle was slightly off just as you’re writhing beneath him about to climax?”
“No way,” Melinda cringed.
“Way,” Dahlia placed filled glasses on the table and poured rum into each without measurement.
“You just got distracted,” Melinda offered, “He doesn’t know how hard it is for dancers. Did you tell him this could be your last year?”
Dahlia rolled her eyes at Melinda, “Yeah right. He’ll understand. He’s an architect, for crying out loud.”
“Do you love him, Dahlia? Is he absolutely the one,” Melinda swallowed hard, not expecting the amount of rum she got, “I mean, maybe he’s not worth all this?”
Dahlia sat her drink down and glued her eyes to the floor answering, “He is and he’s leaving next month.”
“Oh. Oh! He asked you to.”
Dahlia put a hand up, “Stop! Don’t say it!”
Melinda was ecstatic and crushed for Dahlia; even though it would be the break Melinda was hoping for.
Dahlia couldn’t speak. This was worse than being torn between two lovers. Dance was her life. She took a long draught and whispered, “Yes, he did.”
“I don’t know,” Dahlia cried, “I don’t know what to do! I only have a year left in dance but Rand said he’s never coming back. I asked him to wait but he needs to feel more important than anything else. He won’t wait! When he’s gone, he’s really gone,” Dahlia poured her heart out.
Finally, Melinda extracted a teabag from her velvet clutch and held it up to the light explaining, “It was a gag gift at a party I just came from.”
“Melinda!” Dahlia was shocked at her but curious, “What’s in it?”
“Pills,” Melinda replied.
“Duh! What kind of pills?”
Melinda paused, grappling for the right words and finally blurted, “The answer to your problems, Russian Roulette pills.”
“Melinda, what are you talking about?”
“Grand jeté into the grave,” Melinda whispered, testing Dahlia’s mettle, “In case of emergency, make tea.”
Dahlia descended into a fit of giggles and Melinda couldn’t help but join her. Melinda filled the teapot with water and Dahlia put the kettle on the stove. The two embraced happily and Dahlia laughed, “Okay, you’ve made your point!”
“Good! I was half worried you would do it,” Melinda grinned patting Dahlia on the back.
“It’s not a fate worse than death, but it is in a way.”
“Oh yes,” Melinda laughed, “I’d sooner die than marry Mr. crazy-hot-body! Geezzee! Drama! Drama! Drama!”
© September 19, 2016 – 04:44 AM – All Rights Reserved