Pas De Deux
Copyright© 2012 by Texrep
I thought a lot about Antonia over the next few days, trying to rationalise my feelings. In my teens I had tried to avoid Becky and Antonia as much as possible, although I hadn't been nearly as successful as I would have wished. Nonetheless having been saddled with them I was protective of them. The remnant of that guardianship was still with me. Yet I was now viewing Antonia as a woman rather than the innocent I was tasked to protect. She had grown from that gangling girl to a rather beautiful young woman, assured and successful in her chosen field. More than that I enjoyed her company. I looked forward to our meetings and was sad when we parted. Kissing her was wonderful and made me yearn for more. Was I, without realising falling in love?
Over the next few months we did the usual things together, cinema, going out for dinner those evenings she wasn't performing although it was more a case of I dined and Antonia would pinch little morsels from my plate. I would go to watch her performance from time to time and became more knowledgeable of the ballet, although I had to confess to her that it wasn't really my cup of tea. I asked her once what got her into ballet.
As always she was very honest. "It was something that I could do. Mum had started me when I was five and I danced well, although at that time I couldn't say that I was keen on ballet. As time went by I progressed. I was eleven when I first saw you. I had known Becky for years but her brother was a mysterious stranger. Then I met you and fell head over heels, even though I couldn't talk to you. You were so clever and everyone said you would go to University and become a Doctor. I was a complete dunce; the only thing I could do was dance, so I concentrated on the dance so that I had something I could do well and not seem such an idiot around you."
"So it was my fault?" I laughed.
"Yes, Si. Your fault entirely." She smiled sweetly.
At University I had often gone to Jazz concerts and liked the style, so decided to introduce Antonia to the music, so different to that she knew. There were many Jazz Clubs around London at that time and one evening we visited one where the band was particularly good. As usual with Jazz Clubs the place was warm, smoky, crowded and wonderful. I loved the music and was very pleased when Antonia, her face alight with a broad smile started tapping her feet and moving her hips to the beat. Jazz attracts an eclectic audience so we mingled with all sorts. Unfortunately the club had allowed entrance of a few young men who were rendered more confident by drink and an altercation took place when one thought that he could make free with another man's girlfriend. Punches were thrown and in the melee a surge started in the mostly standing crowd. I was buffeted but being over six feet and of a build suitable to rugby I stood firm. Antonia who was slightly apart from me was knocked over and many feet were treading carelessly near her. Without thought I bent down creating a shield for her with my body and picked her up. Still carrying her in my arms I bullied my way to the exit. She clung to me tightly until we got into the street and I set her down.
"Are you hurt?" Was my first concern. I shouldn't have been as she had a beautiful smile on her face.
"No, not at all. Excited? Yes. My Sir Galahad rescued me again. Now he should take the Maiden and allow her to show him how grateful she is." She reached up and kissed me. "And she is very, very grateful."
I knew it had been dangerous in there and Antonia was making a joke of it. I was probably testy when I snapped. "Well I am happy for you, but this Sir Galahad was bloody worried."
The smile vanished and concern etched her face. "I'm sorry, Si. I didn't realise."
"No. It's alright for you. It's fun isn't it? I have seen the injuries caused by trampling and they are not nice. I ... I thought for a moment..."
"What? What did you think?"
"I could see you being trampled underfoot. I was ready to lash out at anyone who had done that, who had injured you, although it wouldn't have been their fault." Antonia enveloped me in her arms.