True Beauty

He thought that she was the most beautiful woman

he had ever seen.

He sat back with his drink

and watched her dance.

His stomach danced along with her,

creating the feeling of fear

and of excitement.


The fear was winning.


He wanted to get up

and ask her her name.

He wanted to dance along with her.

He wanted to know her story.

But instead,

he was frozen to his seat,

clutching onto his drink

like his life depended on it.


He glanced around the giant ballroom,

looking at the eyes of the other men

that were there with him on this cold

but lively evening.


He noticed that most of the men,

even the ones that were there with their wives

or girlfriends,

were also watching her dance.

He could see the fear in their eyes.

He thought you could feel the tension in the air.

They all looked like they were also stuck to their seats.


‘None of us feel good enough to get up and ask her to dance,’

he thought to himself.


His eyes found his way back to her.

Not only was she aesthetically a beautiful woman

but he had never seen a person move as beautifully

as she did.


‘She’s an artist when she dances,’

he thought to himself.

The straw of his drink made its way into his mouth again.

He took a long sip,

hoping that somewhere in his glass,

he would find enough courage to get up

and ask her if she would give him

the honor of participating in her art.


He had always imagined himself as a courageous man

but at moments like this one,

he recognized how cowardly,

and how insignificant he felt.


‘There’s only one way to be more courageous…’ he said to himself.

He killed his drink

and got up from his chair.

His heart started to pound in his chest

and his legs felt weak.


He took two steps in her direction,

then,

he noticed that another man

had gotten up

and

was walking towards her too.

He was just a step or two behind the man

but he knew he was too late.

Defeated,

he turned around

and headed towards the bar.


‘Whiskey on the rocks,’

he said to the bartender.


He turned around

and looked back at the woman.


The other man had made it to her.

He watched him tap her on the shoulder

and whisper something in her ear.

She shook her head,

obviously rejecting his proposal.

He strongly protested

but she just kept shaking her head.

The man kept making his case.

She closed her eyes,

turned away from him

and kept dancing alone.


‘Here you go sir,

one whiskey on the rocks.’

The bartender had startled him.

He turned back to face him,

‘This one is on me.’

He said as he smiled.


‘Really?? Well thank you sir!

But…

why?’


‘You look like you need courage.’

He kept a big and

mischievous grin spread across his face.

‘She’s quite the beauty,

isn’t she?’


He grabbed his whiskey and turned around to look at her again.


‘She’s incredible….’


‘Are you going to ask her to dance sir??’

he said as he polished an empty glass.


‘No way! Didn’t you see her turn down that man just now??

She probably wants to dance alone…’


‘Maybe sir, maybe…

But there is no way you could know that from over here!

Maybe she is just waiting for the right man?’


He shook his glass cup in a slow circle,

stirring the ice cube into the whiskey.

He took a long pull and downed half of it.

It was good whiskey, he noted.


‘You think I am the man she is waiting for??’ he asked.


‘I don’t know sir, you could be!

There is only one way for you to find out.’


‘Well shit…’ he said,

‘I suppose you’re right…

Okay, I am going to do it!’


He drank down the rest of the whiskey

and slammed his empty cup down on the bar.

He could feel the whiskey warming him up.

He smiled at the bartender and said,

‘Wish me luck!’

and turned around to meet the woman he was afraid of.


‘Good Luck Chet!’ the old bartender yelled after him.


He turned back for a second and waved to him.

The bartender gave him the thumbs-up and winked.


He kept walking towards the gorgeous dancer.


‘Wait…’ he thought to himself,

‘How did that bartender know my name??’

He was puzzled by this

and forgot what he was doing for a few seconds,

but his feet kept leading him right towards her,

and before he knew it,

she was right in front of him.


She had freckles that paired perfectly with her auburn hair.

He had noticed earlier that she had dimples,

he had always been a sucker for dimples.

She was wearing a long black dress with diamond earrings

and a gold heart shaped necklace.

The hazel eyes were looking directly at him now.


He froze.


He tried to form words

but his tongue seemed to have forgotten how to move.


‘Hello’, she said, looking at him with curiosity.

‘Can I help you?’ she politely asked him.


‘Uh well I was watching you dancing

and I think you dance beautifully;

majestically even!

It’s like watching art…’

He looked right into her eyes.


‘Well thank you! I love to dance!

She did a little twirl

and faced him again.

‘It’s so freeing!

Do you dance??’

She smiled her big smile,

with her dimples in full effect.


‘Uhh yeah but…’ he looked down at his feet.


‘But what??’ she almost shouted at him.


‘I’m no good…’ he said as he looked up at her.

She was staring at him with a concerning look on her face.


She grabbed him by the hand and twirled him around.


‘I’ll teach you!!

Put your hands on me here and here.

Now follow my lead.’


They danced for the next hour straight.

He felt like someone had spiked his drink.

His head was in the clouds

and his cheeks were hurting from smiling so much.


He wasn’t sure what would happen between them in the future.

He tried to shake the thought out of his head

and remain present with her.


But the thought that this woman had the potential to make him want to be a better man,

kept creeping back into his mind.


‘What’s wrong??’

she said to him.

The look of concern was back on her face.


He smiled at her.

‘Absolutely nothing is wrong right now

But for some reason…

That feels wrong…’

He laughed like a child would.

‘Does that make sense??’ he asked her.


She paused, in thought for a second and finally said,

‘I think I’d like to see you again Chet.’ She laughed and twirled him again.

He looked into her eyes, pushed her hair behind her ears

and kissed her.


He had the strangest feeling that he was now a better man just for having the courage to go up and talk to her.

He knew that no matter what would happen in the future,

that he would be okay.

He knew that he had no regrets in meeting her.

And even if, someday, things ended horribly, and he was left a broken man,

he was glad that he had met someone that made him want to be good enough for.


He smiled and thought to himself,

‘No matter what I have to do, I will be good enough for you.’

He twirled her this time,

dipped her

and kissed her again.


He felt like a man on fire.

Like a man flying through the clouds,

with the sun warming his skin.

He felt weightless and alive.


He realized

that maybe it wasn’t her aesthetics that really made her beautiful to him, but it was the fact he had felt that he had be the best version of himself to be with her.

That he had to have courage to walk up to her.

And even so, she was the one that invited him to join her.

She had believed in him.

She was a call for him to reach his highest potential

and maybe,

that’s where true beauty really is…


-C.H.

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