The Winter Dance Part 2
Bart and Hope walked off the dance floor. “This is so fun.” Hope caught her breath. She sat down at one of the round side tables.
“I’ll be back” Bart said.
A few minutes later he came back with punch and a small plate of veggies. Hope snatched a carrot off the plate and ate it. “Trevor and Rena seem to be having fun.” Bart observes.
Hope looked over. “Yeah, Trevor really likes her.”
Bart nodded his head in agreement. “I can’t really get a read off of Rena though. I think she might only like him as a friend.”
Hope sighed before taking a drink. “Yeah I was thinking the same. I know she won’t string him along though, she will make her feelings clear, whatever they are.”
Bart’s eyes wandered over at Ali. He was putting the moves on a 3rd year Brute girl. She stepped on his foot and stormed away. Bart let out a laugh as Hope followed his gaze.
“At least you can’t say he never tried.” Hope said “I’m glad you didn’t take that doofus’ example.” Bart took a drink.
“Yeah well you never knew me in my homeless days.” Hope raised an eyebrow. “Oh you should’ve seen my moves back in the day. Ole two-tooth Tina could never resist my charm” He couldn’t say it with a straight face.
Hope almost spit out her punch. “Oh my gosh. Yeah I’m sure.” She laughed. Her gaze drifted to Sor and Garrett standing to the side. “Poor Sor though huh?” Bart looked over.
“What do you mean?”
Hope rolled his eyes at him. “God, boys are oblivious.”
Bart turned back with an offended expression on his face. “I am not!”
Hope laughed “Oh please, after how many hints I threw at you about asking me to the dance.”“Well we’re here aren’t we? I asked you!”
Hope raised another eyebrow at him. “After Rena told you.”
Bart’s mouth went to reply but he couldn’t think of one. He slumped in his seat. “Okay fine, maybe she helped me a little.”
“Not to mention the dancing lessons.” Hope said casually as she grabbed a piece of celery.
Bart’s face turned bright red. “I am going to kill Rena.”
Hope laughed again. “Oh come on, it’s sweet that you would do that for me.” She reaches across the table and squeezed his hand.
“Don’t be embarrassed.” Bart looked at her had on his and was about to say something but paused as Garrett walked past their table to a girl. Hope and Bart looked curiously at who he was talking to and then realized they were no longer talking but we soon lip locked on the dance floor.
Hope turned quickly to Bart with her eyes wide. “Oh my god.”
Bart’s mouth fell open seeing Garrett kissing this stunningly beautiful girl.
“Is that Garrett?!” Trevor asked incredulously spotting him across the floor.
Rena grinned sitting down next to Hope “I’m going to assume that’s his hot girlfriend he told me about.”
“Girlfriend? He never said anything about a girlfriend” Bart was stunned.
“Yeah he told me about her when we were trapped together on Halloween.” Rena shrugged and took a sip of her drink, still tired from all the dancing she just did “He didn’t tell me she was drop dead gorgeous though.”
Ali walked back looking a little moody with his drink. “Hey man.” Bart gave Ali a grin. “How’s it going out there? Garrett got a girl.”
“Yeah, screw me right? Ha.” He continued to drink. “How did he possibly do that?!”
“Rena tells us that she’s his girlfriend. Apparently since at least before Halloween.”
Trevor let out a laugh “I still can’t believe THATS his girlfriend. How the heck did he pull that off?” He threw his arm around Rena’s chair shaking his head.
Ali looked extremely unhappy.
Bart sighed. “Okay Okay Ali, I’ll help you out just this once.” He pointed to a girl sitting at a table alone crying. “Her date just ditched her to date someone else. Her name is Ariel, she’s in my Tracking class. Go cheer her up. Don″t treat her badly.”
“Well he better make his move quick, sounds like a slow song is coming on.” Rena says taking a sip of her drink then turned to Trevor with a risen eyebrow “Want to dance?”
He was out of his seat in an instant dragging a giggling Rena to the dance floor where couples had already begun to dance.
Bart stood up and gave Ali a nudge with his elbow and a wink. He stuck his arm out for Hope and she got up and slid her arm through his as they made their way to the dance floor.
Bart did his best to remember what Rena taught him but being this close to Hope turned his thoughts into mush. She had her arms on his shoulders and around the back of his head while his were on his waist.
‘Don’t step on her feet’
He was so concentrated he hadn’t noticed that he was staring down at his feet.
“Ahem.” He looked up. Hope had her eyebrow raised and a smirk on her face. “I mean they’re really nice shoes.”
Bart turned a little pink. “Sorry, got a little sidetracked.”
Hope giggled. “So that was pretty nice of you to do for Ali, and that Ariel girl for that matter.”
Bart scoffed a laugh. “Yeah, not really.” Hope gave him a confused look.
Bart sighed. “Alister is a sweet talker and knows how to charm girls. It comes naturally to him. He doesn’t need my help talking to girls. But, if he thinks that I think that he needs my help, he will do the opposite of what I suggest just in spite of me and to prove me wrong.”
Hope gave Bart a quizzical look. “So, you’re saying that you told him to go talk to Ariel so that he would go talk to some other girl?”
Bart nodded. “Precisely. Take a look.” Their dance had rotated where Hope could see Ali flirting with a group of girls over Bart’s shoulder. Hope frowned.
“But what about that Ariel girl? She looked heartbroken, you just used her as a sort of motivation for him?”
Bart gave Hope a little spin. “Oh no, Ariel is a little on the crazy side. And I think she’s bipolar. That guy that I said was her date, well his name is Thomas. He rejected her 8 times and she still never took a hint. But every time she gets rejected she just goes and finds some poor guy who’s easy to manipulate and tries to make Thomas jealous. See” he nodded behind her and they rotated around. Ariel was lip locked with some first year mage who looked as if he hit the jackpot, except Ariel’s eyes were locked on Thomas from across the room waiting for him to look her way.
Hope looked at Bart as if she was impressed. “You are a lot smarter than you let on Mr. Winchester.”
Bart shrugged. “Not like you. Not with books and building things and all that. But you learn to read people’s behaviors when you live on the streets. Their ticks, their habits, and their actions. It helps keep the peace between anyone you come in contact with.”
Hope smiled at him. “You are something else, Hawkeye.” And with that she leaned up and kissed him on the cheek.
Sor sighed and fiddled with the hem of her dress, once again standing off in the edge of the dance floor as the slow song started and the couples began dancing. She smiled slightly watching her friends enjoy themselves. They looked so happy and she was glad they were having a good time.
Her smile dwindled when her eyes wandered over to Ali who was standing amongst a group of giggling girls, a large grin on his face basking in all the attention he was finally getting. Why did she even think he would ask her to the dance in the first place?
Her little crush made her forget that liking guys like Ali only ended in disappointment. ’You’re too naive for you’re own good Sor.’ She thought to herself bitterly. With a dejected sigh she took a drink of her punch.
“What are you doing here all by yourself? She turned and smiled as Kaiden approached her, his hands in the pockets of his black slacks, a quizzical look on his face.
“It’s a slow song.” She replies placing her cup on a table next to her “and I don’t have a partner or a date. So here I am.”
He cocked his head to the side “Oh I thought-“
Sor shook her head, interrupting him “No, I was hoping someone else would ask me but it never happened.” She paused with a frown “andddd I have no idea why I just told the guy I said no to that.”
He chuckled “It’s fine, really.”
She groaned in embarrassment putting a hand to her head “Again I’m so sorry for saying no to you and sorry for complaining about being alone, I did this to myself you know.”
Kaiden was silent for a moment before nudging her shoulder “Well hey, even though you flat out rejected me. I’m still here and this might make me an idiot for asking again but I think a beautiful girl like you deserves a dance tonight.”
Sor giggled “I reject you and you still want to dance with me? Guess you just can’t take a hint.” She teased.
With a shrug he faced her and held his hand out “Guess I can’t. Now will you do me the honors in joining me on the dance floor Ms. Dalca?”
She couldn’t help the blush that covered her face as she nodded and took his hand. The two made their way to the dance floor where he placed his hands on her hips while she wrapped her arms around his neck and began swaying slowly to the soft music.
“Hey Kaiden.” She says after a moment.
“Thank you.” She smiled shyly, her cheeks turning pink once again.
He grinned back “Anytime Sor.”
While Ali was getting his mack on, he noticed out of the corner of his eye Sor move and make her way to the floor with that idiot Kaiden. He gave a scoff and rolled his eyes before it morphed into a look of longing as he saw Sor’s smile as she danced with the other boy.
“Are you good there, Ali?” One of the Girls said, snapping him out of his haze.
“What?? Oh, yeah. Yeah I’m here. So, what was that number again, bean?” He said playfully.
“So, this is pretty fun right?” Trevor asked with his arms around Rena’s waist. His legs felt like jelly being so close to her. He tried his best to calm his nerves.
Rena smiled brightly at him “Yeah, I’m having a lot more fun than I thought I would.” Her hands were still resting on his shoulders as they continued to dance “Thanks for asking me to be your date by the way. It was really sweet of you.”
“Well yeah, of course. I have been wanting to ask you for a while actually.” Trevor’s felt like one of those cartoons where his heart was beating out of his chest. “I’ve sort of had a crush on you since we started hanging out and stuff.”
′Oh no. Oh no. Oh NO.′ Was all Rena could think as the words left Trevor’s mouth. He had a crush on her? How did she not notice that? She knew she didn’t feel that way towards him, he was a great friend but nothing more but what hell was she supposed to say, in a moment like this?
’The truth you idiot.’ She thought to herself.
“Rena?” Trevor’s voice brought her out of her thoughts, he was looking at her nervously.
She blinked seeing they had stopped dancing “Oh, uh, Trev.” She was still at a loss of words and also hating what she was about to do “I do like you just not....in that way. You’re one of my good friends but I don’t think it’ll be anything more than that...”
Ali pulled himself away from the group, a pleased expression on his face. He let out a sigh of relief and found himself near Trevor and Rena. “What a night, aye? I love party season.”
Trevor’s heart fell. There was a small awkward silence between the three as Rena was giving him an apologetic stare. He put on a big smile. “It’s the best.” He replied to Ali.
He was used to putting on a fake smile. He had done so since his mom had passed. While Hope was just like their mom, he took after his Dad. The tough guy, never shows his emotions. That’s what real men were supposed to do right?
Besides, dad always told him that he should always take care of the people around him, not the other way around. He was grateful though, Rena had been honest with him. He couldn’t ask of anything more. He gave Rena a small understanding smile as if to say ′It’s okay, we’re good here.′
Trevor saw Bart and Hope finishing their dance and head to a table to sit. “Come on, Date” He held out his arm for Rena to take. “Let’s go get refreshments”
The song came to an end and Sor smiled sheepishly as she stepped back from Kaiden “I guess I better get back to my friends. Thank you for the dance.”
“Wait, before you go, can I get your number? I figured we could maybe talk or whatever during winter break? I-if you want that is.” He scratched the back of his head nervously, as if he was waiting for her reject him again. It was...kind of cute.
“Sure Kaiden.” She giggled at his sigh of relief and how quickly he pulled out his phone. Once they exchanged numbers Sor rejoined the group with a bright smile on her face.
Bart drew an infinity symbol out of the keypad and the basement door unlocked. His tie was loosened and the top button of his shirt was undone. The group walked into the door. “All in all I think it was a pretty good night.” He pulled his tie from around his neck and threw it on his desk.” Rena groaned and plopped on the couch next to Sor taking off her heels and throwing them across the room “It was pretty good huh? I’m just glad it’s over, I’m exhausted.” “What the hell do you mean ‘girlfriend’?! You just weren’t gonna tell me?!” Ali said walking in with Garrett.
“It didn’t seem like a big deal.”
Ali turned and eyed him. “I’m just proud of you, lad. Come here.” He said going for a hug, only to get denied. Bart sat into the couch and put his feet in the coffee table. Hope grabbed her backpack from her desk and went straight to the bathroom. She re-emerged a few minutes later in black leggings and a t shirt. She plopped next to Bart, curled her feet up onto the couch and leaned against him. “I am so exhausted.” She said with a large sigh. “I really wish we didn’t have stronghold on Sunday.”“the thought of physical activity makes me even more tired, let’s not talk about stronghold right now.” Rena states taking her hair down from its updo resting her head on the couch.
Sor giggles and stood up getting ready to change “But you don’t play Rena.” She pointed out.
Rena waved a hand tiredly “Doesn’t matter. Still makes me tired just thinking about it.”
Sor rolled her eyes and went to change out of her dress, unpinning her hair as she went.
“I don’t know, all the rah rah you do from the stands might be more energy consuming than what we do!” Ali laughed, throwing his shoes into the corner.
Rena glared at him tiredly and chuckled her heel at the Irish boy who ducked. “Shut up O'Malley.”
The group let out laughs spent the rest of the night enjoying their final moments before the beginning of Winter Break. Most of the students were returning home to their families while those like Bart would remain in Dry Ridge.
The anticipation for the new semester was on everyone's mind. Once they returned to Ethelwine, things would never be the same.