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JL | Com Ivanova, Lt Shran | "Elbows"

Posted on 241801.19 @ 03:12 by Lieutenant Anaxar Shran & Commodore Rochelle Ivanova

Mission: Ballynamony
Location: USS Vindicator
Timeline: SD 241801.19

Teaching a blind man to dance wasn't necessarily a difficult feat - it was one that forced the teaching party to pay higher attention to body and soul than they may have felt comfortable with... Rochelle was no exception. Not only was it painfully obvious that she was so much smaller in stature than her student, but so much more comfortable with her own body and person. The latter hurt, the former was just another simple observation from the stand point of a vertically challenged woman given a rather monumental role in life. "Arms can't be like spaghetti, Lieutenant Shran." She spoke, blowing a wayward lock of hair from her face. From her sofa, perched high upon a tower of toppled pillows, Helsa watched on with a tilt of her horned head. The Almarian Fox seemed to be wildly entertained by the spectacle of a blue man being shuffled around the high polished teak wood floors of the command suite's living room. "You can't be afraid of the person you're dancing with. It's about connection to both the music and to the partner you're holding. At a masquerade you'll have no idea who's behind the mask and makeup even if you were fully sighted." She reminded him, albeit gently, as she corrected the angle of his elbows yet again.

"Which means that I should have some advantage here, not having to rely on visual clues to begin with," Anaxar said. He smiled briefly, before it was replaced with another frown of concentration.

In the time that he'd returned from that hell hole of a planet, Anaxar had seemed to blossom a bit. Still awkward, weedy, he held himself in a way that gave her hope. In many ways she attributed those changes to Si'a who, in her own right, had been a busy little hummingbird all on her own right. So much for taking time to heal. The two were ideal for one another, a perfect sequence of give and take - an almost completely symbiotic relationship. A rarity. "You will need to lead, learn to push and guide with your hands and body, not lewdly, to announce your next step. Failing to do so..." Rochelle was quick to scoot her bare foot out of the way of his incoming stride, "will result in it being memorable for all the wrong reasons. Quit being afraid."

"You do realise that those last words kinda contradict the statement before, Commodore?" Anaxar said as he came to a halt. He removed the hand which was pressed against Rochelle's shoulder (the only way he could reach the small of her back, where it ought to rest, was by bending over his partner, and they had quickly come to the conclusion that that was a ridiculous sight) and ran it through his unruly hair.

"Hardly." She countered in a chuff, taking the time apart to once again try and tame her own mane, "I have no doubt that you can do this and be very proficient at it. You were a tactician. Plot."

After their conversation of a few days ago, Anaxar had changed his nightly holodeck blindfighting training from a nightly holodeck dance training. It had been harder than he thought. For one, fighting was something you did alone, as a general rule. The number of opponents might vary, but at least you didn't have to consider their feelings, or toes. For another, he had never attended a human-style-based ball before, and the whole dancing style was alien to him. He got the hang of moving with the music fairly easy. After all, he always unconsiously counted his strides, walking like a metronome, and the music only added a melody and rhytm to his count. But trying to execute the intricate steps of the dance, while holding another person nearly half a metre smaller than him, and while having to weave through other couples who were also moving, sometimes in erratic ways… With his attention focused for a large part on moving with the flow, the whole 'leading' thing and holding his posture suffered.

He looked grim, straightened his shoulders, placed his hand back in position and forced himself to smile. (That was another thing the holodeck tutor had said over and over again. "Try to smile. Try to look relaxed. You don't have to scare away those around you. At least pretend you enjoy it.") "Shall we try this again?"

Settling back in place, her hands finding their own necessary roosts, Rochelle nodded, "Relax. Actually relax." She tried to coax him down from his rigidity, convince him to enjoy himself - or at least try. "Dance is a language. It's..." she paused to shrug, her fingers lifting on the hand that rested against his arm, "Well, it just is. You have to punctuate with emotion, just kind of let it take you. It can be story of respect, romance, whatever..." She chuckled lightly, "You dancing with me is one thing, dancing with Si'a? You'll feel completely different. I think you'll be alright there. But now? Lead."

"It's just all so contradictory," Anaxar sighed. "Relaxed, but lead. Listen to the music and become part of it, but be aware of what goes on around us. Don't be afraid, but don't botch it or it'll go memorably wrong." The index finger of the hand resting against her back tapped out the rhythm of the music, something of which he wasn't even aware. But muscle by muscle, he forced himself to relax.

"Quit over thinking it and it isn't so contradictory." She was quick to reply. At least he felt the music, the rhythm... So many didn't and couldn't. Half the battle was won when he chose to release himself to it.

Leading was one thing. But he also needed to be careful. The Commodore was so slight that he continuously ran the risk of accidentily just lifting her up and swinging her around. Si'a was smaller still. The whole thing was a juggling act and he was an awful juggler. "Well, at least thus far I've managed to avoid your toes."

"You're doing fine." Rochelle nodded in agreement, her toes especially pleased at being spared an experience beneath his feet. "Just stay relaxed. Happy thoughts. Use pressure as a cue." She found herself nodding, gently urging him along the right path without interfering with his choices. Teaching the Andorian to waltz and two step should have blended well with his natural grace and elegance, and as he relaxed into his role... It did. The redhead couldn't help but smile.

"Happy thoughts," Anaxar murmured, his antennae bobbing in time with the music. The room, the universe seemed to move around them while they appeared to be dancing and turning around each other in the centre. The soft smile which made an appearance now was genuine, not a rictus or a wooden imitation of one. "Yes, I can do those…"

Ah, yes... There you are Rochelle's mind smiled as she felt him truly come into himself - and for once she didn't worry about his elbows or their knees colliding or him grinding her toes to dust beneath his. For that moment their were fluid, his mind far away and touching notes of perhaps a different melody - and she knew, both as a person and his Skipper, that he was going to be just fine after all.

Commodore Rochelle Ivanova
Commanding Officer

Lieutenant Anaxar Shran
Chief Science Officer


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