Thursday, August 11, 2005

Club Seam

Jerrica stumbled a little as she climbed down the steep steps into Leadville’s Club Seam in the dark. It looked like it was once the basement of Victorian house. Duncan caught her shoulders and steadied her. The beat coming from below made it clear that they’d come to the right place.

The Labor Day weekend crowd wasn’t large. It was the off season. Half the patrons looked to be ski bums, some in electric colored ski wear, others in jeans and shirts or blouses from retail day jobs. A few more were frumpy older women in stunning clothes designed to hide the fact that the women themselves were getting to old to go clubbing as they verged on turning forty. The rest looked like college students, having a last fling at the parent’s condos before returning to the grind. They looked more like the crowds Jerrica and Duncan were used to from Denver clubs. One man wore a romantic flowing black shirt that wouldn’t have looked out of place in 15th century Venice with ruby rings, and real silver accent threads to complement a neatly trimmed beat and moustashe, with loose, natural deer leather slacks and finely polished black shoes. A tall woman with long blond hair wore a nearly transparent blouse and skirt over a shimmer white satin bra and a taffeta slip. The diamonds and pearls resting on her shoulders around her neck piled all the way to her chin. Her huge platinum drop earings clinked against the pearls when she moved. Her silvery bracelets piled from her wrists almost to her elbows. Her diamond anklets glittered as the soft silver bells that hung from them tinkled. Her titanium cable belt glowed with a surreal whiteness, and the fat blue sapphire on her white gold belly button ring seized your attention from anything else about her because it was the only part of her that wasn’t white or silver.

Jerrica decided that this woman’s belly button had seized a bit too much of Duncan’s attention and stepped on his foot. His eyes shot back to her.

Despite the thin crowd, the music was alive with urban sophistication and verve. After a long day processing repair complaints in her dad’s office, followed by hours on a motorcycle driving from Highlands Ranch to the cabin Duncan had arranged for them in the mountains, followed by another hour and a half sitting as they shared a really gourmet dinner and enough fine wine to leave her without inhibitions, Jerrica was ready to move. She caught Duncan’s eyes, drew her view to the dance floor where two or three people were dancing. She stepped out onto it, leaving the rest of the world behind her.

Jerrica might be only a sixteen year old kid, but she had already been going to clubs with a fake ID since she was thirteen, and knew no fear. With a grace polished in long hours on an old carpet in their unfinished basement in front to music from her clock radio, Jerrica made the dance floor her own. She was oblivious to anyone and anything but the music, the lights, and Duncan. She danced for the joy of being free, away from her parents, away from her nosy younger sister, not confined in a chair or seat, free to move, free to express herself. The music propelled her to move and her body responded. Every move was defined, just as she wanted it to be, in perfect synch with the rhythm of the drum machines and the mood of the cords playing above it. Her face was absorbed and alive. Even the bar tender had a tough time keeping his eyes off of her, despite the fact that her clothes were nothing special and she wore no jewelry.

To his credit, Duncan kept up with her, not a rival to her hypnotic motion, but a worthy satellite in orbit about her. It was his dancing that had attracted Jerrica to him in the first place. He sensed where Jerrica was heading and went with it. His moves complimented her, although they were not quite as precise and were less dramatic. When the music turned slow, rather than resorting to the high school entwined shuffle that most couples favored, their slow, sensuous, intimate dancing was elaborate, revealing, and breathtakingly sexual without any touching that was visibly crude.

They had danced for more than an hour when they stopped for the first time, kissing and making their way to a table at the edge of the dance floor. Their skin now shimmered with sweat. Jerrica told him what she wanted to drink, just lemon water, and made her way to the ladies room. Duncan breathed deeply.

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