“Come on,” he said, holding his hand out. I took it immediately, without even thinking about it. He pulls me up with more force than I expected. I stumbled forward, but he put his hands on my waist to steady me. When I looked at him he gave me a small smile.
Then I saw a lighthearted smirk.
“Let’s dance,” he said.
“You’re kidding right?”
He pointed at himself. “Does this face look like I’m kidding?”
“Hmph, I didn’t know you could dance,” I said. He grabbed my hand, lacing his fingers through mine. I felt my heart rate quicken.
“Oh, no. I’m an awful dancer. But who cares?” He let go of one hand and twirled me clumsily.
“I’m not dancing,” I said, trying to push him off.
“Too bad, you already are,” he said.
We took a couple steps to the left. He twirled me again and then dipped me.
“This is ridiculous, Max. There’s no music.”
He shrugged. We did that weird side step thing that seems to only look good in movies.
“Ow!” I said, laughing when he stepped on my foot. I looked up at him and our eyes locked. His eyes were so intense. Looking into Max’s eyes, I felt a twinge of hope.
“Okay, that’s enough dancing for you,” I said.
“I don’t think so,” he said, picking me up and spinning me around. I felt so silly. Okay, so maybe this was fun. But I’d never admit that to anyone.
I decided to let myself enjoy the moment. Because knowing me, I’d just find a way to ruin it. I’d let Max win for now, So I wrapped my arms around his neck, and we danced – if you could even call that dancing. What we were doing fell more into the category of swaying.
This was the first time I danced with a guy, real dancing. Not the homecoming dance Jess made me go to in ninth grade where random seniors would come up and grind on you. No, this was real, meaningful, who-cares-if-there’s-music-or-not dancing. And despite myself, I loved every second of it.
“Thank you,” I said. The words just came out, without meaning to. But I meant it.
He looks at me, almost surprised. But he understood. Max was one of those guys who just saw everything clearly, and it was effortless. So without even asking what I’m thanking him for, he just said, “You’re welcome.”