Charles & Claire Ch. 07bySchuppinzigh©
After realizing I needed to defend the honor of all men - I said, "Special K, as you grow up, you'll find boys are more complicated... the older we get. Just have patience with us, and we'll eventually work out, whatever needs to be worked out."
I heard a chuckle from behind me... it was Mom. She offered, "OK Charles, if that's true... how do you explain your father? All he does is work, I rarely see him and when I do, it's like two ships that pass in the night."
"Well, Mom," I said. "Some of us boys are complicated, and then there are some of us, like Dad, who are just plain stupid, because they don't realize what they have right in front of their face - until it gets away from them somehow."
"When did you get so smart?" mom asked. She had a wicked smile on her face.
"Only after I started spending all of my time with you, Beautiful."
Claire and Kalista both went silent for a moment during this conversation I was having with my Mom.
"And all the time I've been spending with these two stunning young ladies, as well."
Claire came up to me and whispered, "Nice save, X," and then added with some gusto, "Are we going to learn a Tango routine or what?" This caused both K and my Mom to giggle.
"Yes, a Terrible Tango Routine," I said. "Must find just the right music," as I started rummaging through our music collection.
"What about 'Hernando's Hideaway', Charles? We've practiced to it a couple of times?" Claire suggested.
"No, Claire... it's a great song to Tango to, but I want something that works for only you and me... so nobody else will dare dance to it, after we do."
"Are we getting a little full of ourselves, Charles?" mom asked.
"No Mom, the music is important; important enough to make or break a dance routine. I found it! It's 'The Pearl Fisher's Tango', by the Stanley Black Orchestra. It's got four measures before you dance, to add a flourish to. Play this CD please... Special K - cut three?"
Kalista started the music, and I had Claire listen to it for a minute. She smiled at me and said, "Let's dance." K restarted the music, and Claire and I started to dance and talked to each other, and we quickly got a roughed-out routine.
"Charles," mom said. "There's something about the two of you... when you two start to dance; it looks to me as though, you've both blocked out everything else around you?"
"That's what happens to me," admitted Claire. "When the music starts, my eyes lock on his, and everyone else is gone... until the music's over."
Kalista added, "You mean music is playing? When Charles is dancing with me... I don't even hear the music; I feel it. It's hard to explain." She quickly blushed.
"You're right, K," mom said. "I understand what you mean. The few times I've danced with X, I know that all there is, at the moment, is you and him. I'm his Mother, and I feel it too."
Claire said, "OK Charles, again. We need to do this at least six more times. K, you get him in about an hour? Is that all right with you?"
K responded, "Sure, Claire... I know how to share!"
The way Kalista said that made us all smile. Claire and I went back to work on the routine, stopping and refining, and we added some nuance to her promenades. After about thirty minutes passed, I thought it was time for a break.
Claire went in with Annie to gather up the goodies for our break.
K came up to me and asked, "Charles; I know you and Claire need to perfect a routine for your next Competition; but could we please do some waltzing, please?"
"Sure, Special K... you ready to learn a new step?"
"Yeah... X, I'd love to." What a smile.
"OK, what I'm going to teach you next, is called The Natural Spin Turn. Let's do it first with you standing on the tips of my toes. Take your shoes off or you'll break my feet." That made K giggle... and she got up on my toes. "OK, K... feel the tempo, one two three—one two three—one two three, yeah... you feel it, K. I see it on your face that you really feel the music. Now, put your shoes back on, quickly, and let's do it again. Yes... you're really getting good at the Waltz, K."
Claire walked in carrying some treats. She went over and put on 'Moon River' - K and I nodded thanks, and started to Waltz. K really felt the beats and was doing the Spin Turn quite comfortably. We danced until the end of the song. Then we sat down with Claire, and Mom to have a snack.
"Kalista," mom said. "We need to find a young man for you to dance with. You could enter Competitions - you're getting that good at Waltzing."
"Annie, I don't want a young man... I want Charles!"
Claire almost spit out the sandwich she had in her mouth when K said that. She coughed and said she was OK, but I think she was a little taken aback by Kalista's... unexpected remark.
"Are you all right, Claire?" Kalista asked.
"Yeah, honey... I'm fine," she said cleaning up her mess.
Mom had stayed quiet through all of this, but I saw her holding back a laugh, when K made her declaration.
The phone rang. Mom got it and said, "Claire - It's for you."
"Thank you Annie," said Claire.
"Hello Mom, yeah, we're preparing for our next Competition. - A week from today. - The Tango this time, Mom - Yeah, everybody's great. - Charles and I have a really cool routine. Can you come to this next Competition? -- Great! I'm sure Annie would love the company of another adult - Yes, and Kalista too. - We have another training tonight, just to remind you - U-huh, the eighteen-year-olds are tonight. - Yes, got plenty of clean clothes. - I know Mom. Bye...Love you, too."
"OK Claire," I said. "Let's go through our new routine a few more times."
She responded, "Ancora una Volta con Sentimento, Carlo"
(Once More With Feeling, Charles)?
I replied, "Se tu sapessi come mi sono davvero sentito, Clara" (If you only knew how I truly feel about you, Claire).
"Oh, crap," my Mom, said with a laugh. "This can't be good."