I was at a bit of a loss for what to write this week. I'm not a dancer. Never have been. Never will be. You know those little girls who twirled around the living room and wanted to be ballerinas when they grew up? Nope. The teenagers who danced through to morning? Not me.
Luckily for this blog post, while I share my characters interests in some things, at other times they insist on making their own preferences known.
For some reason quite beyond my understanding half the people I write about love coffee - I can't stand the stuff. Likewise, if they go out of meals, my characters almost invariably order something I dislike about the menu.
And some of them, despite my ambivalence about the subject, do indeed love to dance. I have one or two professional dancers that make appearances in my stories, but for the most part the dancing you'll find in my books isn't about intricate steps and complex choreography. If someone is that interested in another characters footwork it'll probably be because he has a strong interest in feet rather than dance!
For my characters, and perhaps for myself if I do get onto the dance floor, dance is more likely to be about two characters just pressed up close to each other, feeling the beat going through their bodies and rocking their hips to the rhythm. There aren't any steps to the sort of dance they do together.
I once heard dance described as a vertical expression of a horizontal intent, and that's probably quite accurate for my characters.
Their sexual personalities do tend to come out while they dance. Sometimes it's all about who follows and who leads - who dominates and who submits - and how comfortable the characters are with those roles. Other times it becomes about watching someone dance or about feeling another person's eyes one them, tracking every movement as they dance to someone else's orders. And now and again it's simply about discovering what they can get up to on the dance floor without any of the couples around them realising what they are doing.
I can't say I wanted my characters to love dance when I started to create them. But, do you know what? In hindsight, I'm actually quite glad they do.
One of my characters who loves to dance is Eric. He makes his appearance in a male/male BDSM erotic romance called Turquoise and Leather that was released earlier this week.
Here's a little bit more about the kind of dancing he loves...
The twirling spotlight hit the table dancer for one perfect moment. George McAllister stalled on the edge of the dance floor, savouring the view. The light moved on, leaving a shadowy outline in its wake.
George held his breath. One bright flash, a glimpse of an open white shirt and black leather trousers, and darkness returned. Mesmerised by the sway of the young man’s body, he blindly moved closer, his eyes slowly adjusting to the intermittent darkness.
Another arc of light found the right spot, displaying blond hair and tanned skin for his appreciation. He stopped to admire the brief image before it disappeared again.
Sidestepping dancers, George moved a few paces closer. A flash of light illuminated the dancer’s face. Eyes closed, lips slightly parted, the dancer threw his head back and gave himself over to the pounding beat of the music. Undulating to the rhythm, the dancer’s hips traversed intricate patterns, begging for a partner to complete them.
George swallowed and altered his stance, allowing his rapidly growing erection more room in his trousers. He was only vaguely aware of the rest of the club until someone barged into him. He spared one brief glance for the man who collided with him. That was the trouble with these new clubs — too many bodies all crowded together and not enough good manners to go around. George thought back to the way leather clubs used to be —back before leather turned into a damn fashion statement rather than a sign of dominance and submission. There was a lot of be said for formal rules and everyone knowing their place.
The song ended. He looked back up to the table. A red headed man climbed the ladder onto the high pedestal and filled the now vacant spot.
At six foot four George was tall enough to see over most of the crowd, but he was still half way across the dance floor. He couldn’t make out a blond head of hair winding its way through the press of people.
A new song and a faster tempo brought rapid bursts of light to the dance tables. Every few seconds the whole room lit up then plunged back into darkness. George nudged people out of the way as politely as possible, searching for the dancer.
The music pounded through the room in a thumping, rutting rhythm. In the middle of the song, George spared one glance up to the tables. He found him. The dancer hadn’t descended. He’d merely migrated across to another table top, connected to the first by a narrow platform. With his back to George, the dancer lifted his arms and pushed his hands through his hair. His white shirt lifted and exposed his back, revealing tantalising glimpses of golden-brown skin.
As well as George could judge from his position several feet below the platform, the dancer was close to his height. But he was of a far slighter build. His cut off shirt sleeves revealed muscular arms. For a brief moment he turned and showed a well developed torso with defined abs. It was the lean muscle of a runner rather than the bulk of a gym junkie. He was just George’s type.
George stopped again, hypnotised by the dancer’s movement. A little voice in the back of his mind piped up, telling him a thirty-year old dominant should have more self respect. He should be ashamed of acting like a submissive teenager at his first school dance. His cock didn’t give a damn. It reverted wholeheartedly to teenage enthusiasm.
For the first time in years, George could ignore the loud music and jostling crowd. In his mind’s eye, he saw the table dancer spread out on his bed in his apartment. Golden skin sprawled against crisp white sheets. Black leather wrapped around the dancer’s wrists and ankles. In the silence of the fantasy, he heard a hush broken only by his lover’s frustrated whimpers as he teased him to the edge of his orgasm. George felt the smooth bare skin under his hands. The dancer arched into his touch, begging for more.
George’s fingers twitched. He imagined burying his fists in the thick blond hair, holding him in place so he could take his pleasure as he wished. His cock jumped again. He pictured the dancer kneeling submissively in the middle of an empty room. The dancer’s breaths coming in gasps, he broke their silence to whisper just one word— Master…
He hadn’t felt such an instant pull towards another man in years. For all his sarcasm about the leather hook up spot, the club eliminated any need for subtle questions. Everyone was gay. Everyone was kinky.
The dancer was obviously submissive. No dominant would advertise his availability on top of a table. And a skilled observer could judge his preference for catching rather than pitching from the way his hips moved in the dance, pushing back against an absent partner on every beat.
Best of all, he appeared completely at home on the table. He wasn’t new to the scene – he’d know what he was doing.
George smiled. It had been too long since a well-trained submissive knelt at his feet. Stepping forward in each moment of darkness, looking up in each light opportunity, he made his way to the base of the dancer’s table and stood by the bottom step of the ladder as the song ended. The brief pause between songs brought black shoes and leather trousers down the ladder. The dancer turned and jumped the last step, landing snugly in George’s arms.
If you want to read more, you can find the book here. But I won't lie to you. If you're in it for the dancing, it may not be the book for you - that's about all the vertical expression Eric and George manage!