he has her back to the wall, eye on the door, like some old prizefighter
catching a breath. It’s a good vantage point to watch the women in last
year’s fashion and men with none at all mingle in the dim light, their
conversation dimmer still. The band, more out of tune than touch, is playing
a black hole into the dance floor. The food, at least, is sufferable.
John is out there, somewhere, dazzling some young thing with his Cheshire smile. She scans the crowd, eyes hungry. Maybe the next song. Maybe the one after. Something would get her moving. A toe tap, or two. A head bob. A shoulder dip. Then up on her feet, hipshake, gyrate, make her way between the tables, march one two, sucking up stragglers, a few, three four, a few more, fingers snapping, feet stamping, clearing out the dance floor, to soar soar soar, again.
The gin sour burns a trail down the back of her throat. She puts the highball down and settles back into the corner. The band finishes another bitter number. Maybe this next song. Maybe the one after.
Remember when you were a minipop, and you saw that film, you know, the one you loved that never had a sequel? Well, let's say it did. And it was just like you imagined it, only a little bit worse.