MiamiFicTalk Prompt #13, Dark.
One of Horatio Caine's main orders as Lieutenant of CSI was that, once a month, he took his colleagues out to show his appreciation for all their work. It was also a good chance for the team to bond, unwind and generally have fun.
He would give them a place and a time and feel the energy in the building elevate instantly. Of course, it wasn't mandatory attendance, but few had missed the night out for the last six years since it's inception.
This time, they were all to meet up at Sassimi's, a dance-and-drink club off the beach. It was a tiny little building in a residential area - hardly the place for a nightclub- and the team could only imagine how Horatio knew about it. He may seem like a work-aholic, but appearances were certainly deceptive with that man. He was often in attendance when a new club opened up - the owners liked having the lieutenant in presence, it showed good intentions.
Because of the location, the building was practically 100 soundproof, only when the doors opened did latino beats cascade onto the streets. Not to mention a strong beam of multicoloured lights illuminating better than the street lights ever could.
The clientele varied in age, mid-twenties to late thirties they thought. It was easy to see that every one there were amazing dancers. Salsa, merengue, hiphop…whatever tune the DJ spun, the patrons knew the right dance and the right moves for each.
Calleigh was happy just to sit and observe - to watch Eric dancing with a leggy blonde and joke that she hoped the club carried a crowbar to pry the two apart. Even Ryan seemed to have struck it lucky with a girl by the bar, though they disappeared to a quiet area a bit ago.
Alexx and her husband Jonathan enjoyed a dance or two, but admitted that they couldn't keep up with the young folk' anymore.
"But you, honey," she said, turning to Calleigh, "Are much too young to still be sitting."
"I'm not much younger than you!"
"Yeah, but I've had two kids. My hips don't shake like they used too," she smirked.
Horatio looked down with a smile, before standing up and offering his hand to Calleigh. "May I have this dance?"
"Why, thank you, kind sir." Calleigh smirked, accentuating her accent and shrugging off the jacket from her shoulders.
"Watch it, Horatio. The drawl's out, she means business." Jonathon laughed.
Horatio and Calleigh walked the little bit to the dance floor, bypassing the already dancing couples as a new song began.
He slid his hand to the small of her back when they found a clearing. She placed her hand on his shoulder and brought their already connected hands higher. The music was deceptively slow, but both knew the outcome to the tune - the undercurrent beat was unmistakable. "You ready?" he asked, as they began to dance.
"Are you?" Calleigh sassed, hoping she could still remember all the moves.
The sound of the record scratching sounded through the club as the tune suddenly went up tempo and showed its true colours - Tango.
They shared an intense look, tension rising into an almost pulsing vibe matching the music.
They began to move. Mirroring the other's steps perfectly as they danced with smirks spread across their faces. They had no doubt that the other would know the steps - Calleigh had too much sway in her hips, and too much fire was buried within Horatio - but the mesmerised stares from their colleagues, seen during the spins, enticed smiles.
Soon, they began to notice more room had opened up for them, as the other couples stood back to watch them.
When Calleigh pulled in tight to wrap her arms around Horatio - to symbolise the emotional pull and fight the lovers of the dance had over each other - she noticed for the first time the change in her partner. His eyes had darkened to a captivating cerulean blue and his demeanour dripped with the sexual tension the dance called for. If she hadn't seen his eyes, she'd have said he was as good an actor as he was dancer… but those eyes.
She found herself staring straight into them at every opportunity during the dance. They bore right into her, almost making her feel uncomfortably bare if she wasn't so incredibly turned on.
As she stalked around his stationary figure, arms trailing behind her on his torso, he pulled the sticks from her hair, sending it cascading over her shoulders as she stroked a leg against his.
He spun her around - hair whipping around - and dipped her low as the song came to a stop, the crowd erupting into applause and catcalls. Horatio was so close to her, his lips barely inches for hers, his eyes unblinking as they looked into her.
If she was to say a word, their lips would touch and she couldn't think of anything more in the world she wanted in that moment. She could barely think, period.
She watched as he swallowed and pulled Calleigh back to her feet, another song beginning to play over the systems.
Calleigh swallowed too, composing herself as she smoothed out her dress, praying that her legs would hold her. She looked back and Horatio had disappeared. She searched the bobbing crowd for his unmistakable hair, but couldn't see him. Instead, she saw Alexx coming towards her, her drink in hand. "Sweet heaven, where'd you guys learn to do that!"
"Where is he? Can you see him?" Calleigh asked, pouring the liquid down her dry throat.
"I think he went outside, he passed me in a bit of a hurry. I'm not surprised he needed some fresh air after that. How many times have I told you… two…" her sentence filtered out by the disappearing figure.
Calleigh fed her way through the throng - bypassing an onslaught of interested men - and to the front doors. The music and light filtered back into the street as she left the air-conditioned club for the humid street. The temperature made little difference to that of her own body's.
She surveyed the darkened street, heading spinning for a glimpse of Horatio. She didn't know what to think. Had they just ruined their working relationship irreconcilably? Would they be able to be in the same room without awkward glances and shifting of feet? What about their colleagues - would they be able to see them in the same light?
She finally spotted a figure leaning against the wall and gingerly made her way towards it.
"So, Alexx just about offered me a cigarette…" she smiled, hoping to shoo away the elephant in the bushes.
Horatio just looked to her, those same intense eyes boring into her - this time with uncertainly and… embarrassment?
"Are you okay?" she asked him, stepping closer.
"Do you know how many times I've danced that? How many partners?" He said, standing straighter. "Not once - not once, Calleigh- has it been given so much justice as then. That scares me."
"Why does it scare you?" her hand found its way to his arm.
"Because the Tango is a dance between lovers, Calleigh! Not between friends and work colleagues. I knew that we had a connection, Alexx had mentioned it often enough, but a connection that ran that deep?" His head drooped, he'd said too much. His mouth was voicing his mind more than he had hoped.
Calleigh stepped up close to his body and nudged his chin up to her level. "We tell people that there's an explanation for everything, Horatio, but that's not always true. Some things don't have forensic reasoning, just chemistry…" She fell against his chest, playfully touching his lips with her own, hoping he'd take the bait and give in.
She felt a hand snake onto her waist before a firm kiss melted against her lips.
Her whole body was alive with tingles, travelling from lips to toes and back up again.
She brought her hands up to cup his face, giving the kiss everything that had been pent up from their dance and whatever had been buried beneath the surface for those 9 years together.
The sudden sound of music and beam of light ripped them from each other and back to reality. Calleigh's fingers flew to her lips as she shuffled away from Horatio. She dreaded to think where her lipstick was right now…
"I was just - just checking - that…" Alexx muttered from the doorway, fighting with all her might to not grin. "I'm going to go back inside." She spun on her heel and disappeared again.
"Erm…" Calleigh managed to utter before bursting into giggles, her forehead slamming into Horatio's shoulder in climactic relief. Oh, the elephant had gone alright, but she didn't think she was going to lose Alexx at all the next day.
"Think we should go back inside?" Horatio asked, his voice a slight huskier. He smoothed down a lock of Calleigh's tussled hair.
"I think we'd better. But you're sitting next to her!"