Hey, guys. Mr. Wang here. Yes, you read right! That one Luigi/Daisy writer is back! Here's the latest installment of my story. In any case, I really appreciate the praise I'm getting here. I really do. I'm... I'm really sorry for my lack of good updating times. I've just been having major writer's block, and a bunch of things have hindered my progress. Let's just say... a series of unfortunate events. And not the Lemony Snicket kind...Actually researching and describing the dances is surprisingly one of the hardest things I've ever taken on Fanfiction. Other stuff like other stories, and school also mess progress up. I don't want to let you guys down on this fic, so I must try and write on. I get that I suck at updating, but from the chapters and effort I try to put in, I hope I can at least try to live up to your hopes and expectations. Let me just say a shout out to all of the people who read and fav my stories... thank you. You guys convince me to give remember why I love the old pairing of our favorite shy, green plumber, and our yellow/orange tomboy princess.
And, let me be honest: about a little over half a year (wow) might have made me a bit rusty. Also note to any actual dancers reading: If I am largely inaccurate with dances, I am very sorry. In fact, if you could send me some facts on how a dance is properly performed, as well as how it feels dancing said dance, I'd appreciate it. For now, poetic words that sound nice will have to do. :)
Anyway, all of your reviews were a big inspiration for me to finally get off my butt and do something... heh... anyway, I hope I don't disappoint with this.
AN 2.0, as of 6-18-11: Good lord, the above AN was typed up and made almost 8 months ago... Anyway, I'm sure many, many, many of you are all talking about on how I need to start updating my discontinued stories, mainly of which, is this particular one, coupled with my other story, "Knocked Up." I will profess, that I'm getting a surprising number of requests to finish that story up... in all honesty, I'm somewhat discouraged, because the story and all of its jokes are 93% ripped off of a particular TV sitcom... so in all frankness, pardon me if I don't feel so encouraged on finishing that up. As for everyone else who wants to see more Tango Tanglers, your in luck, because I haven't died yet, and I still feel as though this is the peak of my Luigi/Daisy works, rivaling "Snowflakes." So, I'm really hyped to be writing for you guys again, and I hope to see your reactions and such soon... hopefully half of the fans who anticipated this story didn't either die or abandon hope for this story during my looooooong hiatus...
Last six days have been rather grueling and difficult, and not just because of the surprisingly strenuous dance moves, but dealing with Gary as well. Though he tried to be smooth every time they met, Daisy always found Gary throwing cheesy pick-up lines at her. Lame. This was among the other stupid pick-ups he used. Daisy already feared if he became infatuated with her the moment he left her home for the first time. But no matter what, this man was still supposedly the best dancer in Sarasaland. But if it wasn't for that, Daisy would have already ditched him. But surprisingly, Daisy learned a lot from him. Not just the Foxtrot, but several other methods and dance techniques. He always babbled on about other dances, but what she learned now seemed sufficient enough for the first round.
As Daisy pondered this while she lay on the bed in her room, Daisy heard another set of knocking on her door. Gary must be here again. With a sigh, both relieved and frustrated, Daisy got up from her bed, and got her dancing shoes on. She ran down her stairs and opened the grand door, and was met with the smooth and suave smile of the dancer.
"Hello, My Lady..." he said with overused gusto. The foreign man flourished a bow, before rising up before the sunset princess. Before she could even comment, Gary invited himself into Daisy's household without her word or consent.
"Hey... Gary..." Daisy casually said, just wanting to get over with the next lesson.
The man walked into her home in his traditional flamboyant style that Daisy feared she'd get a little used to. The two moved to the cleared space in the living room, which had been used as the practice area for them over the last week. After doing a few stretches (Daisy swears that the man just does to show off his physique) Gary came ever closer towards Daisy, readying their next dance position. After putting an arm around the girl a little tighter than she'd want, he adjusted both their positions until they were in a suitable stance to commence the lesson.
"So, My Lady, we continue our lessons. You remember the last time I was here, do you?" he asked.
Daisy remembered it vividly, and she preferred not to. Failed pickup attempts, and "accidentally" brushing up against her closer than what was regulation for certain dances. But aside from reminiscing the irritating memories, Daisy delved further into her brain and remembered the parts that actually mattered.
"Yeah, we were doing the quickstep, right?" Daisy asked. Gary smiled and nodded, as he adjusted his footing. Looking down, Daisy did the same, though she was frustrated at how long it took merely to get ready for the dance, with the posture and the footing, and whatnot. In a dance competition, Daisy would've thought that the dance would be quick and done in a flash. Then again, she also suspected that Gary prolonged the process just to stay welcome in her home longer. After all, the quickstep is supposed to be very similar to a foxtrot, just a bit faster paced. From all the ranting the self-proclaimed "Best Dancer in Sarasaland," the quickstep should be "smooth and glamorous, yet fast and energetic." Glamor wasn't exactly up Daisy's alley, but she felt the rest of the description was good enough to pique interest in the dance.
"Shall we dance?" Daisy asked, looking slightly more enthused than she was before.
Then, after much anticipation (and anxiousness) the two commenced their performance. Gary flashed another "smiles are free" look, and with a snap of his fingers, a fast-paced jazzy tune played from the speakers of Daisy's living room. Before she could even wonder how or when Gary installed some kind of device to activate at the snap of his fingers, the princess's feet moved instinctively alongside her partner's.
She strode forward with her right foot, then quickly shifted both feet towards her left side. Taking another step left, Daisy took a slow and easy stride backwards with her right foot. All of this moving back and forth, left and right confused Daisy in the beginning, but after learning and practicing, it all seemed to make sense, and the movements became ever so fluid, ever so faster. And now, Daisy was prancing about in a quickstep around her room effortlessly. She knew she was a natural. Even Gary said that she was a quick learner of all these moves and styles, and that praise alone was enough to encourage her, even from a guy like him.
Daisy's feet seemed to have a mind and will of their own, as they moved to the rhythm of the music, walking about the paths of brass, and coasting alongside the bass. Daisy couldn't help herself. It was... so strange yet fulfilling. Alien, yet familiar. Dancing was a strange combination of the many sports and athletics pursuits she was interested in, yet there was a hint of actual emotion and feeling to it that was unique. A divine elegance, if Daisy were to use such refined words herself. In the end, the result seemed releasing. Euphoric even. It's odd to say the least, and Daisy can't really describe it.
Of course she doesn't admit that she now has some soft spot for ballroom dance. If she shows any sort of enjoyment in it, and Gary notes this, she claims "there must've been something in the water." That, or there's something in his water...
The two continued their motions fluidly, and effortlessly. Daisy, in an attempt to try and ignore Gary and his suggestive smiles, looked down at her own two feet. She then started close her eyes slightly and attempted to count the tempo in her head, moving her feet with each beat. She muttered the 4/4 time beneath her breath, attempting to focus. "Okay... one, two, three, four... one, two... three, four... one, two, three, fo- AHHHHGH!"
Daisy focused on her steps, closing her eyes to concentrate on the beats and moving her feet. Ironically, it was because of that, she accidentally tangled her feet against Gary's, causing the two to slip up and fall to the ground.
"Ah, dang it! MY ANKLE!" shouted a rather unfamiliar voice. An unusually girlish yelp soon followed after that.
Daisy herself was fine, as she got up from the floor, though she did do a double-take on who's outburst that was. She looked around her house, checking if there was some unknown person lurking around. Then, she looked down at Gary, who was holding his ankle in pain. The tomboy finally put two and two together and realized the outburst was from Gary. The voice lacked an accent, and the overall "macho" tone to it. He sounded like a normal guy, as he nursed his injury.
Then, Daisy almost laughed on the spot. "Wow... it was all a sham this whole time... He's not a foreign manly guy, or anything... He's just some loser trying to impress me..."
Gary stopped his high-pitched whimpers and looked up at Daisy, who was returning his look with a rather amused expression. "Erm... Ahem, are you alright, My Lady?" he asked, getting back into character.
"Uh, yeah... I'm alright," Daisy said, trying to hold back a giggle or two. The foreigner nodded and attempted to get back on his feet (with little success). After stumbling a bit, he managed to, though he relied leaning on a wall, and one of his legs appeared to be limp.
"O-okay..." he replied through a pained groan. "So... shall we get back on top of things and continue?" Gary said, his accent becoming a bit strained, almost forced. It was pretty obvious he was hurt, despite how much he tried to hide it.
The Sarasa Princess raised a brow. "Are you sure that you're okay? You looked pretty much in pain right there."
"Oh, no, no, no, no, I am perfectly fine! No slip up can take out me! I-I've endured worse... Let's get back to the dancing, shall we?" Gary hastily replied, standing up on his own two feet. As soon as the professional dancer stood at a posture and stance that could be perceived as normal, a loud audible crack could be heard.
Daisy wondered what in the world the noise was, though she received her answer when she saw Gary on the ground trying to nurse his ankle, whimpering in an accentless voice, and cursing under his breath. Daisy sighed, as she went to go pick up her kart keys and take this guy to a doctor's office. So much for the help of "The Greatest Dancer of Sarasaland."
After waiting few a couple hours, Daisy tapped her foot impatiently while reading a magazine in the lobby. Gary was able to maintain his usual cool on the way over to the doctor, which was a relief since Daisy had it up to there with his incessant whining at her house. She knew such an injury would probably promote such whining from herself, but coming from someone she wasn't exactly fond of, Daisy didn't exactly hold much sympathy for him. Still, she felt somewhat bad that it was sort of her fault for tripping him up.
Reading an article on The Mushroom Tribune (with nothing better to do) Daisy skimmed through paragraphs and ads, until she noticed something very interesting.
Princess Peach Toadstool to Sponsor the First Annual Mushroom Kingdom Ballroom Dance Competition!
Daisy was hooked on the article, and flipped through pages of the magazine, until a photo featuring Mario and Peach was shown (each clad in a tuxedo and ball gown respectively). An small section of paragraphs full of questions and answers from various interviewers of media were displayed. One query interested Daisy the most.
Q: So, what inspired you to hold a dance competition within the Mushroom Kingdom, your Highness?
A: Well, a number of reasons. Tourism, fund-raising, publicity, simply for fun, and the like. Besides, I think that some of us could use some... healthy competition.
The magazine article made no mention of Daisy's name, though the princess was positive that Peach was talking about her when she mentioned "healthy competition. Frustration took over, though Daisy was still able to let out one smug grin.
"Oh, you'll definitely get some competition, Peach... you definitely will... I'll beat you at your own game, as soon as Gary comes out of... the... doctor's..."
Daisy was shocked, and even disappointed when she saw Gary come out of the doctor's office, as her hopes crumbled rather quickly. The professional dancer was wearing a cast around his ankle, and his face was barely containing his agitation. A green-capped, elderly toad doctor looked at his notepad, and reviewed what one could assume were medical reports. Gary shifted nervously as he awaited an answer from the doctor, and Daisy too was curious as to what the results would be. The tryouts were in two days, and Gary needed to recover fast enough so Daisy would be able to beat her rival. The doctor however, busy looking on his notepad, continued flipping through his pages of information and medical stuff, ignoring the two. Gary decided to interrupt him and break the rather awkward silence.
"So, what is the situation, Doctor?" the dancer asked, fully back in character.
The small toad snapped out of whatever trance he under with his notes and adjusted his spectacles as he inspected the pad. He looked and reviewed the notepad again, before cringing slightly, a gesture that made Gary and Daisy fear for the worst. However, seeing at their panic, the good doctor did his best to keep a professional and mild-mannered tone. "Hmm... It appears you've suffered a fracture on your Talus bone..."
"Uh, what does that mean?" Daisy asked, not exactly a medical professional herself.
"In simple terms, it means you broke your ankle joint."
Daisy and Gary winced a bit, though there was nothing they could do about it. Daisy knew a broken bone was a major factor, and it'd no doubt hamper progress. Images of her looking bad in Peach's eyes towards not even coming to a tryout swirled within her mind... The Sarasa princess could only repeat a single thing in her head: This is not happening... this is not happening... this is not happening...
"Okay, Doctor... when will I be able to take this infernal thing off?"Gary asked, fretting the worst. His dance partner Daisy, also expected the worst, as her usual upbeat optimism seemed shattered at this point.
The elderly toad shuffled his feet, and looking down, as if wanting to avoid the question. After reviewing the notes the doctor seemed-ever-so-interested in and sighing, he replied, "Well, it's hard to say... I'd say about several months, in addition to-"
Both Daisy and Gary looked at each other after they practically shouted the same words in unison. But with good reason. Still though, the two hesitantly looked at each other after their simultaneous shouting, with Gary attempting a somewhat forced laugh to lighten the mood, though he quickly turned bitter once again as the cast on his foot reached the corner of his eye. After the two dismissed their oddly timed outbursts, Daisy and Gary focus shifted back to the doctor.
"Well, yes. The ankle needs to remain in its cast so the bones can heal naturally."
"Isn't there some kind of surgery or something, that you could do to speed up the process? I have a dancing competition to participate in with this lovely lady in two days!" Gary said, starting to get severely annoyed.
As the foreign dancer continued to bicker futilely with the doctor, Daisy felt that she didn't need to hear anymore. It was over. Just when she was ready to believe she was invincible enough to win the entire competition, her partner breaks an ankle, and now things were looking bleak. She sighed and thanked the doctor, as she stepped out of the clinic, Gary soon following behind after he shouted some nasty insults on the doctor's way. Daisy head straight for her kart, not really paying any attention to Gary who was trying to catch up to her with a cast and pair of crutches. She hopped in her orange cart, put in the keys, and started the motor.
"I am... terribly sorry, My Lady. This sort of thing never happens to me, and for me to ruin this moment of yours and your Kingdom's... I am sorry. This injury brings me great shame, your Majesty."
Daisy wasn't even listening as she started her car engine and drove out of the parking lot, leaving Gary behind in her dust. She's had enough of all that chivalry nonsense from him.
"Hey, wait! At least give me a ride to my hotel room!" he shouted out. Daisy however, was already way past Gary, and sped off towards Toad Town. "Call me!"
"Oh, jeez... This is bad, this is bad, this is bad..."
Daisy chanted and repeated said omen over and over again in her head. Heck, she wasn't this panicked since that stupid alien Tantanga kidnapped her, though it was common knowledge that Daisy often put competition and personal pride over quite a few things. Having no more use for Gary now (and somewhat relieved that he was finally free of him) Daisy was speeding across Toad Town. But where was she going this time? She didn't exactly know what she was looking for again. Instinct was leading herself back to her house, though something else was causing her to linger in the small bustling town, as if searching for an answer. The posters of the dance competition were still littered around the place, as if taunting her current predicament. How in the heck would the princess able to tell her Mushroom Kingdom counterpart that she was without a partner and that she'd have to forfeit before the competition even started? That would be just plain insulting, perhaps not so much for Peach, but very much so for Daisy. The tomboy knew the whole reason Peach even made this dance competition in the first place was to get her to crawl out of her shell...
As Daisy drove her kart along throughout the roads, she noticed a familiar sight that was able to light an imaginary bulb above her head. She saw the familiar blue overalls, accompanied by the trademark green L hat. And an instantly recognizable mustache was draped under a comically large nose. It was him.
"Of course! Why haven't I thought of it before?"
Daisy sped up to the green fellow walking along the sidewalk, and slowed down right next to him. The man looked to his side, with a rather bemused look on his face, before to turned into a full smile. His face held a warm expression, though it barely contained his surprise, as he definitely wasn't expecting to meet Daisy of all people.
"D-Daisy! It's so good to see you! I was just on my way to the ice cream parlor... If you want, then... you know... you can come with me. Unless you're busy or something," Luigi asked, as smoothly as he possibly could. However, the intense look Daisy held seemed to give him some rather odd messages. "And judging by that... anxious look on your face you seem like you are busy, or something's on your mind... What's going-"
"No time! Luigi, get in the kart!" Daisy exclaimed. The plumber raised a rather confused brow and scratched his head.
Without warning, Daisy grabbed Luigi by the shirt collar and dragged him into the kart. Pressing the gas pedal, Daisy drove over straight to her home, Luigi still wondering what in the heck was going on. He landed face-first into the car, his his body still trying to situate itself normally from his upside-down position. Normally, this would be one of the most absurd things one could undergo in a seemingly normal day, though the green plumber knows he's had to go through much more that was much worse than this. At least it wasn't Bowser driving the kart... Daisy, or at least from Luigi's perspective, was eccentric enough to do some rather crazy things, though this one still stumped him. One moment he's saying hi to Daisy, the next he's apparently getting kidnapped. He silently pondered what she was up to when he finally managed to sit in a more comfortable position in his seat.
As Daisy hopped out of her kart and headed towards the door to her house, Luigi cautiously followed in suit.
"So, we're at y-you're house?" he stammered. "So, uh, care to explain why you kidnapped me all of a sudden and didn't explain why?"
Daisy looked at Luigi with a mock expression of surprise, soon replaced with a playful smile. "I wouldn't call it kidnapping... more like voluntary arrest," she joked. Luigi skeptically looked at her, though the smile was enough to disarm him a bit.
"How was that in any way voluntary?" Luigi asked, becoming ever more confused with what Daisy was up to. If he didn't know better, Luigi would have almost let the smile from Daisy simply atone for the trouble of getting him here in the first place.
"Well, you didn't protest or complain about anything along the way here, did you?"
Luigi opened his mouth, though his argument was mute. She did have a point. He did in fact stay silent for the trip, and more so, he acted as if nothing was really wrong. He still enjoyed being in Daisy's company, and even if he ended up getting kidnapped on the street, at least he knew Daisy would have some sort of good intention.
Daisy opened the door to front door, gesturing for Luigi to follow her. Said green plumber hesitated, and was quite reluctant to step inside the home of a friend for the first time.
"You... want go in...? In your house? Oh, um... I-is this something maybe we can discuss outside...?" Luigi was a bit shy to go in her home for the first time. If he had some sort of precognition or warning that he would be going to Daisy's, he probably would've been able to handle it, if not try to veer Daisy away from going over there.
Really... it was all just... awkward.
"Oh, quit fussing, and get in," Daisy retorted, grabbing Luigi's wrist and dragging him in his house.
"Hey, that wasn't voluntary!" the plumber exclaimed. However, his qualms about the situation were hushed when Daisy closed the door behind him. He wasn't so nervous now that he was finally in Daisy's living room, though that didn't quell his anxiousness completely. Now, it was simply a matter of just dealing what Daisy wanted with him. Perhaps what she would ask would be enough of a nice distraction from his apparent nervousness.
At least that's what he hoped, until he noticed Daisy going over to an old record player and putting a vinyl in, causing a slow musical tune to resonate within the room.
"Is she... setting the mood, or something...? Ugh, get your head out of the gutter, Luigi... it's not like that, she didn't invite me over to be romantic and stuff... right...?"
He shook his head vigorously, presuming that Daisy of course had some justifiable reason to invite him here.
Daisy walked over to Luigi and wrapped an arm around his waist, while clasping his hand in her own. He could've sworn that she was trying to hug him or something, though the stance they were in was a bit... awkward for a hug. He paused for a moment, before he realized that he and the tomboy princess were in something akin to a typical closed dance position.
"Luigi, you know anything about Quickstep dance?" she hastily asked.
He paused for a moment as the question registered into his mind. Luigi recalled some things that he knew of and hesitantly nodded his head.
"Well, Quickstep dancing was derived from Foxtrot, it's a rather speedy dance, has a 4/4 beat timing, and 50 bars per minu-"
"Good enough! Now shut up and dance!" Daisy interrupted.
Starting to swing and sway him about expectantly, Luigi lost his breath as he tried to compose himself, organizing his steps, before he managed to catch up with Daisy. Surprisingly, as the two danced, Luigi felt himself recognizing the song that was playing on the record player, and he was able to subconsciously move himself along the rhythms fluidly, as if it all seemed natural. He was getting the hang of it.
The feeling of dance... was something unusual to Luigi. Yet, he knew all too well that the feeling was far from alien.
Luigi looked down, ignoring whatever pressure or nervousness he felt with Daisy earlier, as his focus was eventually shifted towards counting the beats of the music, checking his footing, and eying Daisy's as well, so that her own footing was in tempo with his. However, it didn't help that as he went on, Luigi found out that Daisy was a bit more of the dominant dancer of the pair, and that the plumber found himself in the position in the dance the women often take. Feeling a tad uncomfortable, Luigi decided to turn the tables as he quicked up the speed of his steps, all while keeping in touch with the speed of the tune. The auburn-headed girl was quick to notice this change, and tried to catch up, strangely gracefully so. The plumber smiled, as he soon saw that he was starting to lead Daisy around the room, instead of vice versa.
One... two, three, four... One... two, three four...
The beat was repeated in Luigi's head, and he knew that Daisy was counting too, judging from the way she seemed to be looking down at her feet in a similar fashion to him.
The dance started to intensify a bit, as the movement of the feet were no longer restricted by mere fast steps across the living room. The vinyl record's tune became more dynamic, and demanded that Luigi and Daisy's dance become equally so. Their dance became more progressive, from mere steps, to all sorts of moves, from short hops, and rotations. Whatever carried their momentum, and made it so that they'd never stop, in a way that pulled it off gracefully, they did it.
As the music reached a high point in its rhythm, Luigi lead Daisy into a couple almost dizzying rotations, before he lead her into a dip, her leaning back, and him leaning forward, their faces quite closer than they'd normally want...
With that, the music on the record stopped, and the room was silent.
It took a moment for the two to realize that their heads were covered in sweat, and it took a few moments for the thrill of the dance to leave their systems, until they both realized the position they were in. After Luigi quickly propped Daisy back up, he let go of her, the slightest blush on his face. Thankfully, since he was a bit red from being out of breath throughout the whole dance, it didn't seem noticeable anyway. The green plumber pondered on whether or not Daisy was red for the same reasons or not.
After a few deep breaths on both sides, the princess nodded her head.
"That was good..." she huffed. "So... wanna be my dance partner for the upcoming dance competition...?"
The plumber looked at Daisy with a raised, and confused brow.
"A... dance competition?" he repeated. "Daisy... is this why you brought me over here?"
She shrugged nonchalantly.
"Couldn't you have just... asked when you saw me out at Toad Town?" he pondered, cocking his head slightly.
"I needed to see how quick on your toes you were, how... how into the dance you could get... a simple 'yes' or 'no' just wouldn't do..."
Luigi nodded his head, still confused overall, but just a tad more understanding of Daisy's mindset.
"So... how'd I do?" he asked.
"Oh, you were great..." she said, smiling slightly. "Way better than that Gary Stu guy who tried hitting on me earlier..."
"Nothing..." the auburn princess interrupted, cutting him off. After catching her breath and walking up to Luigi, she offered him a hand. "So... you in?"
After giving it some thought, Luigi nodded his head rather enthusiastically. He accepted the hand from Daisy, as he heartily shook it.
"Yeah... I'm in."