In 2010, I worked at a financial counselling service deep in the heart of a big Vietnamese community in St Albans. At Lunar New Year, the ‘five dragons’ (I’m sure there’s some sort of cultural history there that I don’t know) would dance through all the businesses in St Albans to bless them and wish them prosperity for the year.
In 2010, I happened to be in a supermarket when the dragons came in. Normally people just stood around and watched - it’s really cool, the dragons are followed by a whole lot of percussionists and some of the dragons had 8 people in them.
I’d stood there to watch, too - but this year, instead of being danced right by, the biggest dragon, the golden dragon, came straight for me. I wasn’t sure what I was supposed to do - everyone else was Vietnamese, they all knew what was going on and I felt like I was so out of my depth. I kind of took a few steps backwards in case it just wanted to go past me.
It didn’t. It gave chase. It chased my past the fruit and veg into the freezer department where it finally cornered me up against a freezer cabinet and then went to do what I thought was use it’s enormous head to mash me up against the door. But it didn’t push me, it just touched its nose to my face and shook. Then, it danced off.
I was dazed, I had no idea what happened until a Vietnamese woman came up to me and said, “You’ve just been kissed by the Golden Dragon! It’s very, very good luck! You will have a very good year!”
The city of London tended to be intimidating to people, but not for Marlene. The big city didn’t scare her, not even the shady places that she had been working lately. Apparenty dancers only got work in strip clubs and while the salary was shit, the tips were obnoxiously generous.
Marlene had promised herself that she would only work as a pole dancer until she got enough money, but that day never came, or at least she was now used to it. It was easy money and while she wasn’t too fond of her boss, the work conditions were better than her previous work places. In here Marlene always had a security man who walked her to the stage and back to her dressing room, he always made sure that men wouldn’t touch her and basically take care of her. Plus, the rest of the crew was nice as well.
Like every night, Marlene was in her dressing room. She already had the black and lacy lingerie that she was supposed to use and was finishing fixing her stockings when she heard knocks on the door.
“Change of plans, Marley” her bodyguard, Freddie, said. “The boss wants you to meet his son” he said and Marlene understood that by ‘meet’ meant gave him a private show. She wasn’t too fond of those, but she got extra cash so it wasn’t that bad as long as the other person understood that she was not going to have sex with them.
She made sure that her red lipstick was okay before putting on her satin robes and walked out of her dressing room. “His name is Evan and he’s going to be in charge of the club since Gareth is moving to some other businesses” Freddie told her secretly and Marlene nodded.
They crossed the club and walked into a mirrored room with a small stage in the middle surrounded by sofas where Mr. Rosier and her son were. Marlene couldn’t help but to notice how handsome Evan was, but she didn’t let it show, she just kept a stright face and looked at Gareth. “Hello, sir” she greeted him politely.
Eyes fixated on her swaying form,
As she dances in a dazed rhythm to the invisible tune,
To catch her before she falls,
Just as you always do.
You’ll bring her somewhere safe,
Lay her down in your golden light,
Which tricks you into thinking she’s someone else,
Someone who cares for you in the way you want,
Someone who loves you as you love her,
Someone like me.
But you don’t know that,
Maybe not ever.
She smiles at you gratefully, and I watch as red dusts your cheeks,
‘I love you.’
You say that to her in your mind,
As I say it to you,
Summary: You’ve been trying forever to get Steve to notice you, but he just never does, so you’ve come to your last resort: forties dancing.
Word Count: 844
A/N: This is my first stand-alone imagine, so I hope it’s okay! Tell me what you think! :)
[Y/N] = your name [E/C] = eye color
“Come on, [Y/N], you have to feel the beat,” Bucky
instructed as he pulled you back and forth across the music-filled training
“I’m trying!” you whine in response as you accidentally
stepped on his foot yet again.
Without so much of a grimace, the assassin murmured, “I
think that was the thirty-fifth time today…. that’s a new record, even for
“Haha,” you rolled your eyes. “I’m doing my best here, so
cut me some slack.”
Bucky had been attempting to teach you the East Coast Swing
for the past few weeks. The dancing style was fairly simple, and the fact that
the man was the lead made your life easier; however, no matter how hard Bucky
tried to teach you, you seemed to always mess up.
Sure you always had a special interest in forties culture,
but there was a completely different reason for your interest in the ancient
form of dancing: a tall, strong, blond, blue-eyed reason. You had tried
everything to impress him, from fine-tuning your fighting skills to looking up
corny jokes online that could maybe make you seem more humorous and fun to be
around. Unfortunately, your super soldier crush was far too stupid to notice
you, so you were planning on taking more drastic measures to make yourself
“[Y/N],” Bucky called. “Earth to [Y/N]. Come on focus.”
When you snapped back to reality from you little daze, your
dance partner restarted the music. You furrowed your brows in determination and
stood up as straight as you could. You would get it right this time.
Several minutes later, as Bucky dipped you, he smiled, “You’re
Suddenly, someone from the entrance cleared their throat.
You quickly pushed yourself up, scared of who had caught you; no one was
supposed to know about your little scheme. Finally, looking up, you saw who was
there, and your heart immediately beat ten times faster.
Steven Grant Rogers.
The most perfect man to ever live.
His face was clearly strained, and his sky-blue eyes looked
between you and Bucky in a slightly angry manner.
“I’m sorry to interrupt,” he finally said, the anger in his
voice apparent. “But I need to speak to you, James.”
“You only call me ‘James’ when you’re pissed…” Bucky
mumbled. “Bye, [Y/N]. We’ll do that thing we were going do later, okay?”
You could not tell what Steve was thinking, but he was
clearly even angrier after Bucky’s last sentence to you as he marched out of the
room, not waiting for his friend to follow.
“Is it all set?” you call over your shoulder, checking your
outfit out one last time in the mirror.
Your ensemble included a longer, flowing dress that swirled
whenever you spun around and bright, red lipstick. It practically screamed “Forties.”
With a huff, Bucky replied, “For the billionth time, yes!”
“Okay, well, are you sure he’s even going to come? I mean,
sometimes he doesn’t like coming to Tony’s parties… and he doesn’t realize that
this one’s special.”
“[Y/N]. Listen to me. Everything is going to go perfectly.
Okay? In fact, let me explain exactly
what’s going to happen tonight. You’re going to walk in all pretty. He’s going
to see you and fall head over heels in love—well, more in love that I know he
already is. And you’re going to dance the night away like Cinderella, or
whatever, except that it’s not all going to go away the next morning. Does that
sound good enough to you?”
You simply rolled your eyes in response. For being a former brain-washed
assassin, he could certainly be a drama queen.
When you entered the party hall, your eyes immediately began
wandering the room. You finally saw him standing at the bar, and his blue eyes
locked with your [E/C] ones. The moment took the breath from your lungs, and
you were, yet again, unable to breathe. He suddenly looked away when he saw who
you had arrived with, and your heart sank.
“Don’t worry, doll,” Bucky whispered in your ear. “I’ll get
him to come over here.”
“Wha-Bucky! You can’t just tell him to dance with me!” you
squealed in shock, but he was already gone.
You watched as your dance instructor walked over to his best
friend. Steve’s face started out tense, but as Bucky explained something you
could not hear, your crush’s face slowly relaxed into a smile. Within less than
a minute he appeared in front of you with a sheepish grin.
“Good evening, ma’am. Would you mind if I asked you for a
dance?” he asked with a forties gentleman flair
“Well, I would love to, Captain,” you replied with a grin. “Though
I must warn you, I’m not good at dancing.”
He chuckled, “Neither am I…Maybe we just need the right
As you took his hand, you noticed Bucky nod to the DJ who
began playing an old swing song.
The more you danced, the clearer it became to you and Steve
that the two of you had found the right partner.
Hopefully the paragraphs work this time. It’ll pick up in speed soon, I promise.
Once again thanks to Lunast and Fris for helping
Their progress was slow and cautious, Russ choosing to lead the way down the dirt road. He held a tree branch, something he’d managed to rip free with Jund’s aid. Snake still staggered along with Cry’s help, battered body slowly recovering.
“You’ll feel better after a sleep,” Cry assured him with a smile. Snake looked to him and nodded but said nothing. “Are you okay? That fall knock your voice box out of place?”
“I’m thinking,” Snake answered. Cry nodded in acceptance, going back to his casual observation.
Dancing Daze: Dreamy portrait of young
ballerinas (of the Ballet West) as cygnets in motion as they prepare for
a big show featured in the article ‘A Little Brit Different’
photographed by the magical Tim Walker for Vanity Fair, 2007 - scanned
from ‘Pictures’ by TW