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Friday, November 26, 2021

F³ The Fix

             After the ovation, Nikki and I bowed out to let the kids dance, though I noticed Cassie wasn’t one of them. I expected her to be canoodling in some corner, but instead she and Rick stood talking to a group of other students near the buffet table. Most of them did that thing where they had in-person conversations while simultaneously checking and writing things on their phones, a skill I could never master.

            “Something troubles you, Matthew?” Nikki asked. “You’ve got that crinkle around your eyes when you are engaged in a mystery.”

            “They didn’t sneak off,” I said, “which means it’s something else.”

            “Ah, yes, I’m sure it must be off-putting to you that your niece did not sneak away to enjoy in forbidden fleshly—”

            “Please don’t finish that sentence,” I broke in.

            “I thought you were comfortable with her exploring her sexuality, especially in a controlled, trusting way.”

            “Comfortable is not the word I’d really use, more like accept it as a necessity, kind of like my dating a vampire.”

            “Oh, and I never want you to feel comfortable, at least not in that way. It’s too much fun keeping you off-balance.”

            “Mm-hmm.”

            Cassie’s had trouble making friends since moving here, but she’s got a knot of people around her, now. Hmm.

            “Oh, Matthew, I will make you regret so tame a response. I—are you actually looking at your phone?”

            I was too focused on scrolling into the social media app to tell if her shock was genuine, and I knew I’d regret it later, but I had to make sense of this. And that’s when I saw the pics and videos on Cassie’s page. More than that were all the comments and praise to her for having such a cool uncle.

            I loved that, but I had a concern, too. “Is this going to cause problems for you?” I showed Nikki.

            As a vampire, photos and videos showed up blurry, usually a dead giveaway of her supernatural presence.

            She smiled at the media, scrolling through, then she bent close to my ear so others wouldn’t overhear. “Not at all. I’m very impressed by the technology, today, which makes corrections to the focus. Our fluid dance can explain any blur, especially as some of it has affected you. Do not worry. But you do seem to have solved the mystery.”

            “Yeah, my niece used us to elevate her social status. Clever.”

            “Do you plan to reprimand her?”

            “Nah. She might have to live with us showing up to all her dances from now on, though. I don’t think she thought that part through.”

            “Indeed, I look forward to more of these.”

Friday, November 19, 2021

F³ Fever

             Those dancing competition shows, the ones with the celebrities and their perfectly choreographed routines had nothing on me and Nikki. We’ve been dancing for years, so a routine didn’t matter. We didn’t need it. We created it on the dance floor. With a look or a touch, we indicated our next moves. Here a slide to the left, there a twirl. Spin out then back in, lean down as far as my back would let me—vampires have dense muscles and pack on the pounds! A dip, then spin her around behind me. She whirled me around, then we danced back, her hand pushing me, then a high kick and her ankle on my shoulder. My fingers got a trace of fishnet along her calf before her leg came back down and she’s pulling me forward by the tie before I pull her spinning into me again. Her arms went around my neck and her leg lid up my hip. My hand caressed and held her thigh as the song ends.

            And like that, awareness of the rest of the floor finally snaps home. The floor was empty, aside from us, a solid throng of people ringing all sides, and they’re all clapping and cheering, Cassie going at it the loudest.

            But I’m still wrapped up with Nikki, her breathing quick. Seeing as she didn’t need to breathe, that meant she was excited. I was, too, and sweating and panting with the effort.

            “Dress made of flames for a devil, but also for a burning fever. You in on this?”

            “Not this time, Matthew. I suspect we are both pawns in your niece’s scheme, though I am willing.”

Friday, November 12, 2021

F³ The Move

             “Boo,” Cassie hissed at me on the dance floor.

            Rick gave tiny shakes of his head with big eyes darting to Cassie. Clearly, this wasn’t his idea.

            “What?” I shrugged.

            “You two are better than this. Come on, enjoy yourselves.”

            “It’s your dance, not ours. Why don’t you work on cutting a rug?”

            “We’re trying, but we haven’t put in the time that you two have.”

            “Git gud, scrub.” Cassie had told me that often enough whenever we played games as she trounced me. It felt good to send it back to her.

            Her glare tried to fire a rocket at me. But then it turned into an evil smirk. “Fine.” Taking Rick by the hand, they marched off the floor.

            I shrugged as the song trailed off. I began walking Nikki back towards the punch bowl when the familiar strum of a bass began.

            “Clever girl,” Nikki said.

            “Too clever,” I answered, spying Cassie walking back from the DJ.

            I felt Nikki’s irresistible tug on my arm, pulling me back to the dance floor as “Fever” played.

            Nikki will never not dance to this, and I like it, too. Question is, how did Cassie find out?

Friday, November 5, 2021

F³ Devilishness

             Despite my initial hesitance over Nikki joining me in chaperone duty, it worked out really well. Instead of being a solo killjoy wandering around acting as the fun police, I got to do so with Nikki’s help. However, she wasn’t as interested in violations of school policy as much as the classlessness by which they went about it.

            “That will be enough of that,” she chastised a group of girls dressed as witches and vampires who tried to hike their skirts up past what the school allowed. “You will ruin the look of your dresses, and lower yourself to the level of a common trull. Show some sophistication, ladies. Sexuality is not about how much skin you show, but how your presence commands attention. You’re dressed the part, now act it. Take the boys to the dance floor and show them who you are.”

            She has a point, at least tonight.

            Nikki demonstrated by taking my arm and marching us back onto the dance floor. We kept it tame, not wanting to show up the students who seemed to only know how to sway back and forth to the music. Well, except for Cassie and Rick. They didn’t do any grand waltzes, but they at least stepped and showed off some other moves during the slow songs.

            Nikki wrinkled her nose and sniffed in my ear quite loudly.

            “That’s not my cologne,” I whispered. “I’m guessing it’s not the food, either. Let me guess, drugs or booze.”

            “Very astute, Matthew. The four boys in the corner I believe are hiding a bottle or a flask. A very low-quality whiskey, I believe.”

            We circled that way, and I left her to confront the guys in the corner. Of course, their lookout spotted me, and I couldn’t see which one of them pocketed the flask, and I wasn’t about to search them.

            “Gents, liquid courage is overrated, especially when you have gals waiting for you to come ask ‘em to the dance floor.”

            “We don’t have—” one dressed as Tony Stark said.

            “Shut up, man!” Hawkeye cut in.

            “We’re gonna get busted,” Spider-man said.

            “Relax, I’m not a teacher, and I’m not interested in busting you. I want to make sure everyone has fun, tonight. Now, everyone’s in costume, so you don’t have to worry so much. Let go, have fun, be the costume. If you pass your flask over, I’ll point out a group of gals just waiting for you to get them on the dance floor.”

            Surreptitiously, Hawkeye passed over the flask, which I pocketed. Then I pointed out the witches and vampires to them. “Tell them the Devil sent you their way.”

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