If I tried to wear red, I'd look like a crime scene.

Sasha recalled that conversation during their "audition" with Michelle. Looking across the dressing area at Boo, preparing to take the stage as the Cashier in Madame Fanny's eco-ballet, Sasha's heart did a little flutter.

Boo was breathtaking. Hair up in a sexy mod twist, reminiscent of a blonde Audrey Hepburn… no. Sasha was more Audrey. Boo was Bridget Bardot: sexy hair, beautiful curves and dramatic makeup making her eyes look more incredible than normal. Red costume fitted just right to hug every curve, down to red tights and toe shoes that make her look like a living flame, a sinuous line of ruby and cream.

When she made her entrance, Sasha could hardly keep her eyes off her- an effect the audience was currently sharing. Boo- perpetually shy and quiet little Boo- was owning the stage, exuding a confidence and boldness in her dancing rarely seen in public. She moved fluidly, like a bolt of electricity dancing across a science platform. Everything from her neck to ankles rolled in a perfectly liquid motion, and the come hither looks she dashed to the wings as she beckoned her cohorts made Sasha's jaw drop. Her mind emptied like a cracked vase, leaving only images of the toe-dancing temptress who had replaced her friend and a single descriptor: Stunning.

Watching Boo so intently as she shimmied and slinked en pointe, Sasha almost missed her cue to enter. Dressed as a reusable canvas tote, Sasha knew she didn't present the sexiest figure; the costume's sole redeeming feature was the royal blue under-leotard that matched and projected her eye color. She pirouetted on cue, dancing in time, and turned to meet Boo for their duet.

She had to struggle to keep her expression neutral as she and Boo played off one another. Mock-struggles ensue; she is dashed to the floor, then pulled back up to hold an arabesque while Boo supports her. A soft hand braces her at the waist while its mate holds along her thigh. Their faces are cornered to each other, and Sasha can feel Boo's breath graze her cheek. For the smallest of instances, Sasha has a fantasy of the room suddenly emptied and Boo pulling her closer, gently kissing her lips, sliding her hands up, up, up, closer and closer to… But she returns to the moment before that thought can lead too far.

Turning to fling herself at Boo again, she is held back by the Paper and Plastic dancers, lifted into a cross pose as Boo holds up her arms, looking like some exotic scarlet butterfly with those gauzy wings on her arms. A split second before she has to turn back to the audience, Boo catches Sasha's gaze and tosses her a wink. Sasha wills herself to stay in character, pinches the inside of one cheek in her teeth to keep from breaking, and pins her gaze to the floor.

Boo finishes with a series of echappes with a devastated expression, then drops to one knee to complete. The silence hangs in the pavilion for a moment, before raucous applause bursts like a swollen thundercloud, filling the space with cheers. The dancers take group bows, then meet in a line, join hands and collectively dip to the audience. Sasha makes sure she ends up next to Boo, and the tight warm grip she receives betray Boo's nerves and excitement. The calm smile never leaves her face, though, and Sasha gives a squeeze of encouragement, holding on just a second longer after the line breaks apart. She wants more, so much more, but the feel of Boo's hand in hers is enough… for now.