I don’t know about you but cake is one of my favorite things about birthdays. There’s something about the candles…and all that icing.
I’m writing today to let you know about a different kind of birthday. Specifically, a book birthday (sorry, no cake). HOPE, book #2 of the Indigo Ballet Series has been officially released today! I’m very excited to share it with you. You can read an excerpt below and grab your copy here. I hope you enjoy reading HOPE as much as I enjoyed writing it.
Someone grabs my elbow firmly and I turn to find the new guy leading me to get a spot in line. I scowl at him and then at my elbow. “Um…hi? That’s my elbow.”
“You do not wish to dance?” he says, eyes wide. His accent is silvery, melodic. Also hot.
“Um, no–I mean yes–I mean, you’re grabbing my elbow a little too tightly.”
He drops it like he’s been scalded, holding up both palms in defense. A stray lock of brown hair curls along his temple. “My apologies. Sometimes I forget myself.”
I look at him as I try to appraise whether or not he’s making fun of me, but his face is unreadable. Also I can’t look at it for long or I might get hypnotized. “Riiight,” I say.
We wait in silence, watching the other dancers ahead of us. When we reach the front of the line I see our two reflections–dark and light–in the mirrors that run along the entire front wall of the studio and decide they are complementary. At least it’s nice to have a tall partner for a change; my opportunity to dance with someone my size is limited because I dwarf several of the other boys in the room.
I start to move and feel his hands firmly on my hips. His breath warms the back of my neck and I feel myself flush. Normally I’d take a glimpse in the mirror to make sure my alignment is perfect, but I don’t dare. For reasons I don’t want to admit to myself, I feel nervous and jittery. We face each other and he offers his hand as I come into arabesque. He starts the slow promenade and I chance a quick glimpse at his face. He smiles and I catch my breath. I switch my gaze over to his shoulder and notice that my palm is slick with sweat. I’m so embarrassed I feel heat in the tips of my ears. I pray my face isn’t bright red.
He slides a hand around my waist for the dip and I close my eyes. “Relax,” he says into my ear. “I’ve got you.”
And…. for your listening pleasure: The official playlist for HOPE: