1. Let Me Lead You into Dance

"It's a total bust," Skye groans, looking around the room of expensive suits and sparkling jewelry. It was going to be a simple mission: sneak into the fancy gala their suspected Chitauri tech dealer was supposed to attend, convince him that they are potential buyers, and then get an appointment with him when they can actually take a look at the merchandize – and if it's real, arrest the guy. Only surprise, surprise – the guy didn't show.

And Skye is getting fed up with this whole thing – she feels uncomfortable in her dress (although she has to admit, it really is beautiful), her feet hurt, the classical music is so annoying, and everybody's just so… stuck up. She just wants this mission to be over.

"It's not," replies Ward calmly, his eyes still scanning the room, but sipping from a champagne flute – a surefire sign that he expects no more action tonight. "We can make something out of this night."

Skye huffs.

"Like what? Do you want me to sniff around the guests, trying to find somebody who's into alien stuff? Or someone who fuddles with his taxes?"

The corner of Ward's mouth actually curls into an amused smirk at that.

"No, I was actually thinking about something more enjoyable." He places his flute on the table, then holds out his hand for her. "Wanna dance?"

She's surprised; hesitant. It's way more open and playful from the specialist than she's used to.

"I… I'm not really good at it," she stammers, cheeks flushing.

"It's okay," he smiles at her, kind and inviting, and her fears disappear. "I'll lead." And he's already holding her hand and leading her to the dancefloor. Then, placing her left hand on his shoulder, and his right on her waist, he starts leading, gliding with her on the floor in a way she didn't think she could.

Suddenly, the party is not even close to annoying anymore. It's magical – she's engulfed in light, dancing with a handsome man who's looking at her like she is more precious than the sun and the stars (how could she have not noticed it until now?).

So, yes – the night is not a total bust.