chapter two

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When I look over my shoulder and see Tristan Beck standing with his hands tucked into his pant pockets I have to concentrate on not letting my face fall into the what the hell expression that I know it wants to settle in. I might be good at biting my tongue, but my face is an entirely different story.

He smiles politely at me and takes his right hand out of his pocket, extending it to me. I stare at his tanned and calloused fingers before flicking my gaze back up to his. 

"I was hoping I might be able to steal you away for a dance," he says, his voice smooth and calm, as if this isn't the most bizarre thing happening in the room at the moment. 

Beck, Tristan Beck, star basketball player, playboy extraordinaire, is asking me to dance. 

I stare up at him in shock, distrust quickly coursing through me and I glance back down at his outstretched hand again. Jenny makes a soft coughing noise and when I look at her she's lit up with equal parts excitement and confusion as she nods at me.

I look back to Beck who's still standing with his hand extended, his calm demeanor unfazed.

What the hell is going on?

My initial reaction is to decline. To make up some excuse and make a beeline for the door because this obviously can't be real. It's a set up for a punchline that I'm clearly not privy to, or a bet that the rest of his basketball team gave him. I can practically see the conversation playing out as I stare at him; find the last girl you'd ever talk to and ask her to dance.

But the small voice in the back of my head saying live a little is growing louder as Jenny's excited nod helps to shove the thoughts of bets and jokes to the back of my mind.

I stand, placing my hand in Beck's, and follow him out on the dance floor. His hands swallow my own and I can feel the rough edges of his finger tips against my knuckles. His hands are warm, despite the chill coming from the entrance doors which keep swiveling open and closed with each couple who goes out "for fresh air" and then comes back inside with swollen lips and spotty lip stick. 

My hands find his shoulders when he turns around and I keep my eyes trained on a spot on the far wall over his shoulder as his hands slide into place on my waist. I can feel his touch warming the satin fabric and heat right through to my skin. 

The music has slowed from the high tempo and booming base that vibrated right through the floor and up my legs to a slow melody that I would have made a note to look up later if I was able to get my brain to function correctly. 

 I don't know how to dance. I've never actually done it before aside from with my dad at the few family weddings we went to growing up, but he didn't know how to dance either so we usually just pulled out our go-to old-school moves and made a joke of it. I don't think doing the robot is going help me out much in this situation though. 

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