Asking her to dance was one of the tougher things I'd said over the past few days. It had taken more courage than asking her to the wedding had. And naturally, it was met with a little more resistance. Actually, I think it was more surprise and disbelief than any sort of unwillingness to participate. I admit, under any other circumstance, I'd probably reply with a flat out 'No' if asked to step onto a dance floor, but this was more than me asking her to dance. This was me, Luke Danes, telling Lorelai Gilmore how I felt.
I would probably never admit this out loud, but I had learnt a lot from the book I invested in. Not only had it made me realise Lorelai was who I wanted, it had also made me realise I had to do something about it. After years of sitting back, waiting for a chance, hoping something would happen, it made me realise that the only way I would ever get what I wanted was to swallow my inhibitions and ask.
So here I was at my sister's wedding, asking her to dance. It took a minor amount of convincing, letting her know that I don't dance with just anyone, and then I held my hand out, and I was leading her onto the dance floor and pulling her closer and leading her in the simple waltz steps. The experience was completely overwhelming. I could feel the softness of her hand in mine, the curve of her back and the flimsy material of her dress under the fingers of my right hand. It took a hell of a lot of restraint to not pull her body against mine. It was a rare moment, the two of us sharing so much contact. I could count on one hand the number of times we had exchanged a friendly hug. Of course, much of that was my own doing. I knew that there had been countless opportunities for a comforting embrace, but most of the time (and by that, I mean when she wasn't actually in tears) I consciously kept my distance, afraid that if I held her, I'd never be able to let go.
I was surprised at how easily we moved together. Granted, we both fell victim to the urge to look at our feet, but we kept in rhythm with the music, no toes were crushed and we quickly felt relaxed enough to actually enjoy it. In the few minutes the song lasted, I think I looked away from her face a grand total of two times. Once, to make sure my feet weren't about to encroach on hers, and the second was when she held my gaze long enough to make me blush.
If anyone ever questions how true that statement is, I'll lie through my teeth.
It was during that moment that I thought my message was beginning to become clear to her. I knew she was avoiding my eyes as much as she could, seeing as I had them trained on her face. But she was mesmerising. I loved seeing her from this new perspective, as a woman in the romantic sense, as opposed to the sometimes annoying, always kidding, always innocently flirting friend. I knew she was more complex than I had ever expected, that there were sides to Lorelai Gilmore that I had only ever dreamed of, and hoped one day to experience in reality. I knew she was easily excitable, high on coffee ninety-five per cent of her waking hours. I knew she was a wonderful mother, a committed friend. But could she be quiet, gentle, content? Could she be happy with what I had to offer?
With those thoughts running through my head, I unconsciously pulled her closer and was then surprised when she was suddenly pressed against me. How was it possible to feel instantly comfortable holding her in my arms, when Rachel had always seemed just a little too tall, Nicole too tiny. How could Lorelai manage to fit so perfectly? I stared at her willing her to look at me, to let me know what she was thinking when she finally raised her eyes to meet mine. I saw confusion, surprise, and then she was returning my smile. My own smile grew wider, relief washing over me while I continued to turn her around the floor. She lowered her head to my shoulder, and I tightened my arm around her, secure with the knowledge that she was welcoming my advances.
I knew that I had passed up a perfect opportunity to kiss her, to leave no doubt in her mind as to my intentions, but I wasn't ready for that yet. I was almost overwhelmed with the evening's occurrences already, and I didn't want to push her too much, too quickly. Having watched from the sidelines for so many years, I knew exactly what not to do. I knew what was too much. I knew what would send her running for the hills. She had confided her fears to me so often, I had managed to memorize, and even categorize the list. So now, when it was my chance to be that person, I could call them to mind quickly, before I did or said anything rash. I grinned to myself, realizing that with this knowledge, I had an unfair advantage over 99.9 per cent of the male population.
And for that, I was thankful.
Author's Note: This story came about due to a few requests for Luke's side of the dance scene. Hope you enjoyed it. Please let me know, I love to get feedback from you guys!