A/N: See Description for Music
The dance studio was tucked between two larger, dark grey buildings, yellow light from the streetlamps illuminating their concrete faces. You could hear the tram passing above on the suspended tracks as you approached the building, the new sign calling you forward. You paused with your hand on the door handle and took a deep breath.
You were rather nervous. You had danced when you were younger, but never seriously, and had only recently managed to pluck up the courage to resume. Before you could lose too much more of your resolve, you pushed into the dark stairwell beyond the door, waiting for your eyes to adjust. You could hear music playing, something with Spanish rhythms.
You started up the steps, your bag moving gently against your back, the stairwell becoming increasingly darker. Finally, after three flights of stairs, you reached another door, this one standing slightly ajar. You gently pushed it open, and felt your breath catch.
The studio was dark but for the amber light coming through the floor to ceiling windows on the opposite wall from you, and mirrors lined the other two walls, a dance bar running around the room. Another tram passed, it's sound drowning in the music, the wooden floor under your feet trembling slightly. None of this was what had made your breath catch.
At the far end of the room, by the windows, was a man, dancing. You were only able to see his silhouette, but you thought his eyes were closed as he turned, his muscles moving smoothly under his skin. He wore tight dark shorts and a form fitting white shirt, and his dark hair was messy, like he'd just climbed out of bed.
You forced yourself to look away, a blush creeping into your cheeks. You reprimanded yourself under your breath. You had come here to dance, not to fawn over some really, really good looking guy. You pinched your wrist. Concentrate!
You took a few calming breaths and looked around the room again, determinedly avoiding looking at the dancer. The studio was nice, and it would be perfect for you. The music stopped suddenly, and you looked down. The dancer stood by the stereo propped on a stool, catching his breath. You let your bag slide off your shoulder and cleared your throat to catch his attention, hoping to find out more about the studio, and if or when it would be okay to use it.
The man looked up, obviously startled, but then straightened and smiled a slightly lopsided smile that made him look mischievous and incredibly handsome. “Hola señorita,” he greeted, coming towards you. You completely forgot what you had been about to ask for a moment, and had to think about it.
“Um... Hi. I'm sorry to bother you, I just saw the sign for the dance studio when I was on the tram earlier and thought I'd come check it out.” You were fairly proud of yourself for not butchering the sentence. The man was still smiling.
“You are absolutely not bothering me. I'm Antonio, the owner of this studio. And you are?” he replied.
“I'm (Name).” Antonio leaned forward and kissed both of your cheeks before turning and walking back towards the stereo. You blushed crimson, glad the room was so dark.
“You have a lovely name, (Name),” he said, his Spanish accent making your name sound so much more elegant and mysterious than it ever had before. “You are a dancer?” he asked, looking up from a case of CDs.
“No, not really. I mean, I danced when I was younger, but mostly just for fun. I think I might want to do it more seriously now, though.” You set your bag down, taking a few tentative steps away from the door, your translucent black ballet wrap skirt shifting over your legs.
“What kind of dance did you used to do?”
“A little bit of everything, I suppose,” you replied, walking over to run your hand over the smooth wood of the bar.
“And what kind of dance do you want to do now?” he asked.
“I um... I don't know exactly. Ballroom dancing has always struck me as beautiful, but then again, so has ballet.” You looked out the window, becoming lost in thought for a moment. Antonio smiled again.
“Well, (Name), you are welcome to use the studio any time. It's busiest here in the morning and on weekends, but it's always empty after eight pm, and most days sooner. There are classes held here too, if you're interested,” he said, picking a CD and setting it in the player.
“Awesome, thank you.”
“As long as you don't mind sharing the studio with me,” Antonio joked, sending you a glance. You smiled. His eyes glinted green in the soft light when he looked up, and you could see his hair was a dark brown. “Are you going to stay and dance today?”
You thought about it. “I think I will, at least stretch a bit,” you responded, going back to your bag and taking off your leggings. You had boy shorts under them, so that your skirt didn't show through, but you had always been more comfortable dancing without long pants. You thought you felt eyes on you, but when you looked back at Antonio, he was putting the CD case away, facing away from you.
You adjusted your tank top and went back to the bar, figuring you’d start with a few ballet exercises. “Do you mind if I put the music back on?” Antonio asked.
“Not at all!” you replied, turning to the mirror. You liked the darkly lit studio, liked the relaxing atmosphere it provided. You heard a button click on the stereo. You stretched your muscles before putting one leg on the bar and leaning over it.
The song began, the rhythms of a tango greeting your ears. The bass was low, and you could feel it in your chest. You felt yourself moving to the beat, but forced yourself to still and keep stretching. You switched legs, propping the other one on the bar, and stole a glance sideways, looking for a touch longer than you should have at Antonio's dancing form. He move with such fluidity, the music dictating his every move. You again forced yourself to look away and kept stretching, this time lifting an arm over your head, your hands soft as you bent as low as you could.
The beat of the tango was infectious, and again you found yourself moving in time to it, becoming lost in the rhythms. You wanted to dance, but not particularly ballet or even a tango. You just wanted to move, to twine your fingers in your hair and let go. But you didn't, instead resting a hand on the bar as you gently moved your ankles and pointed your toes a few times. Your ballet classes were starting to come back to you, your muscles remembering the way they were supposed to move. You moved one leg around you in a circle, and then the other, before dropping down, one leg extended to the side, to the beat of the tango. You disguised the move as another stretch, bending sideways over your leg, when in fact it had simply been your body reacting to the music. You thought you caught Antonio watching you in the mirror, but when you looked up, he was dancing.
You stood and dropped again, this time stretching over the other leg. As you stretched you noticed that Antonio had started dancing differently. Whereas before he had been dancing as if he were alone, and his movement had been closer to balletic, now he was moving as if he had a partner and they were locked in a fiery tango. You took a deep breath, trying not imagine what dancing with him would be like. You stood and then lifted onto your tiptoes, holding your arms in front of you in a loose circle. You replicated the move a few more times, before deeming your attempt at concentration useless.
You sighed harshly and closed your eyes, deciding to let your body move however it wanted to, following the tango instead of fighting it. Your hips swung softly from side to side, your upper body joining them. You turned your head to the side, eyes still closed, and began dancing, your movements not quite ballet and not quite tango, but somewhere in between. Your mind emptied, letting the music take over completely.
You didn't even jump when you felt a pair of warm hands settle on your hips, a muscular chest brushing your back. Antonio matched his movements to yours for a few moments before beginning to lead you into the tango. He spun you around, pulling you close to his chest, the pair of you now face to face. Your eyes drifted open, taking in everything from his dark eyes and long lashes to the gentle pressure he placed on your body as he non-verbally told you how to move.
Antonio’s hand settled over your spine, his other hand entwined with yours. You moved easily with him as he stepped towards you, his leg between yours. You dipped slightly away from him, turning your head to the side before he brought you back to him and stepped again. His body seemed to fit perfectly with yours, and he stared down into your eyes with and intensity you could feel in the air.
Antonio stepped back and then back again and then turned you slightly. You leaned into him, one leg coming up, bent, and resting on his thigh. The pair of you leaned back slightly before snapping upright as Antonio spun you around and you dropped down, one leg stretching out to the side. You felt his hands his hands slide down your sides as you slowly stood, your hands trailing up his legs. Antonio stepped to the side, leading you with him, and then forward, his leg sliding against yours as you stepped. You felt the rhythm of the dance even though you'd never danced it before, could feel your body learning the motions.
You pressed your side against Antonio’s, his arm wrapping around your waist as he moved the pair of you to the side, and then moved you through his arms into a low dip, his hand running down the side of your body. The pair of you straightened, the tension so thick you could feel it in your skin. Your hand ran over his neck, to his shoulder, and then settled just below his shoulder blade, his hand going back to your spine.
He sensed you were picking up the dance, and decided to move faster, leading the pair of you into a twisting step across the studio and holding your waist as you bent back, one of his hands coming up to ghost of your collarbone, between your breasts and down to your navel. He pulled you up once more and spun you around, leaning forward. You slid an arm around his neck so you didn't fall as he leaned you forward. His breath was hot on your neck. He pulled a move you were fairly certain was from ballet, but it didn't matter, your world reduced to the studio, the music, and the man in front of you.
You danced until the song ended, and even then you stood, staring into each others eyes and regaining your breath. Antonio’s hands slid down your back as the pair of you swayed in time to the much slower music playing through the speakers. Antonio rested his forehead against yours, and you closed your eyes.
Antonio’s fingers ran along your jaw line, and even though you would have thought doing such an intimate dance with a stranger and having them touch you so would be incredibly awkward and unacceptable, you didn't mind Antonio's touch at all. Dancing with him felt natural, and the pair of you moved together seamlessly.
“Will you be coming back,? He asked, his voice low, his accent stronger than it had been before the dance. You sucked in breath.