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Dances With The Rockstar

Dances With The Rockstar

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Dances With The Rockstar

Comprimento:
340 página
4 horas
Lançado em:
Aug 27, 2017
ISBN:
9781386339090
Formato:
Livro

Descrição

What Olivia Owens cares about: becoming a professional dancer.

What she does not care about: handsome Latin rock stars who can charm their way into any woman's bed.

She's barely heard of Rick Rodriguez before. Something about selling a lot of albums and selling out his first world tour. But Olivia doesn't have time for men. She's got a career to launch, and Rick's latestmusic video for "Midnight Tango" is her chance to strut her stuff.

But the universe is funny about things. The more you push something away, the more likely it is to come bite you in the ass. So Olivia shouldn't be surprised that Rick really lives up to the title of talented dancer. She should be even less surprised that she's falling for the oldest trick in the tango book...

Passion. Vulnerability. The heat of the moment. When combined, any Latin dance will turn two people into an undeniable pair. Olivia wants Rick. Rick wants Olivia. They're about to get really, really close on his first world tour.

The Midnight Tango calls. Will Olivia answer?

Lançado em:
Aug 27, 2017
ISBN:
9781386339090
Formato:
Livro

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Dances With The Rockstar - Cynthia Dane

Midnight Tango

Our eyes meet across the crowded and dark dance floor

I had no intentions tonight, and yet it looks like I’ve found you

Is there any polite way to say hello?

I guess that’s why God gave us our bodies!

The music draws us together into our first embrace (How does it feel?)

I can already tell that I’m not letting you go tonight!

The beat and rhythm lured me

It was you who hypnotized me

I can’t control these needs

Now just follow me, girl, I’ll lead!

Dancing away to paradise; it’s like I’m a criminal

The night gets away from us; it’s the unforgettable tango

If love and passion could be summed up in one move

It would be this! It would be that! The seduction of the midnight tango!

Why do you look so nervous, standing next to my bed?

There are no inhibitions left. Nothing to fear, nothing to dread

So take off your shoes and let’s dance

One last passionate horizontal tango

I already know just how you move, so let me take it away (Take you away)

The stars are still shining, so we really have all night to dance

And then you whisper you’re ready

And I hold my urges steady

And I forget just who I am

Just another primal man!

Dancing away to paradise; it’s like you’re a criminal

The night gets away from us; it’s the unforgettable tango

If love and passion could be summed up in one move

It would be this! It would be that! The seduction of the midnight tango!

The beat and rhythm lured me

It was you who hypnotized me

I can’t control these needs

Now just follow me, girl, I’ll lead!

Dancing away to paradise; it’s like we’re criminals

The night gets away from us; it’s the unforgettable tango

If love and passion could be summed up in one move

It would be this! It would be that! The seduction of the midnight tango!

1

Olivia had been to a lot of auditions before, but the one she went to one warm day was unlike anything she had seen.

Granted, this was her first time auditioning for the music video of one of the world’s fastest rising rock stars. Before, she was only familiar with local stage plays, musicals, and small independent companies putting together some demonstration videos. Those were easy to audition for. Sometimes she knew the people in charge and thus already had an in. Other times they were so desperate for someone in their pay range that they would take the first girl who walked through the door. At least Olivia had skills. Twenty years of studying and performing various Latin dances had made her one of the best dancers in her area. Perhaps even the region.

This wasn’t a small time musical. This was the major music video for one of America’s hottest men of the moment. Rick Rodriguez, whose songs were on every radio station, and whose pelvic thrusts were on enough iPads to cause a revolution, was in town looking for his next lead woman in a high budget music video.

You really are the best around. Olivia thought it a million times as she stared into the mirrors hanging on the walls. Normally she didn’t have to pep herself up this much. In fact, she woke up that morning thinking she had the role in the bag. It was easy to assume that when she had laid down one of her best practice performances the night before. Everyone at the dance studio said nobody else stood a chance against her. She fit the demographic of the woman in the advertisement. Twenties, any race, must be able to do a variety of dances. Olivia’s training was mostly in the Latin dances. She could tango, samba, merengue, and do anything else if she put her mind to it. Olivia was also familiar with classical dances and even hip-hop. Her mother, just that morning, said that Olivia would surely be the prettiest, most talented woman at the auditions that day. Then she showed up.

Olivia registered at the front desk alongside a thin woman with long blond hair and a torso to die for. That was Olivia’s first instance of doubt. Surely the producers would want a pretty blonde girl to star opposite Rick in his next music video. Blondes stood out better on camera, after all. Olivia, on the other hand, had dark, curly hair, and a dancer’s body. She would never be superlight and thin, simply because she had muscles to maintain. As more women with waifish bodies filed in to register and then lined up in the hallway to wait for their names to be called, Olivia began to wonder if her size was against her.

Did you hear that Clara is here today? asked the girl standing in line behind Olivia. She looked right at her, and yet Olivia had no idea who this girl was. Nor did she know Clara. Is she really talking to me?

No, I can’t say I heard anything about any Clara.

Really! Then does that mean she didn’t come today? I might have a chance yet!

The girl behind this one piped up. Oh, no, she was one of the first here today. Here by special request. We’re all doomed.

Who’s Clara? Olivia asked.

The other two looked at her as if she had been living under a rock for the past five years. "Clara. Surely you know the Clara. When Olivia shrugged, both girls gasped. She’s only one of the greatest dancing talents in the whole country. She’s been in half of the most viewed music videos in the past year alone!"

Olivia scoffed. If she’s so great, then why is she auditioning and not getting a part anyway? Formalities? Please. They wouldn’t waste so much money on an audition if they knew who they wanted already. It’s one thing to be invited to audition. It’s another to get the part entirely.

This time it was the other girls’ turn to scoff. They took one giant step back from Olivia, consulted with one another, and then elected the first one to say, You seem really sure of yourself.

No, I just don’t let myself get wrapped up in stupid head games. What’s the point of psyching myself out and ensuring that I’ll give a terrible performance in the audition? There is no point. I came here to do my best, so even if I don’t get the part I’ll still know that I did everything in my power to procure it. I’m sure there are plenty of girls who are better dancers than me here today. I also know that I am a damn good dancer and deserve to be here.

The two girls turned their lips down at her before walking away. They were resigning themselves to spots farther back in the line, no doubt to talk smack about Olivia.

Whatever. She had been honest when she said she didn’t play mind games. Olivia hadn’t worked for twenty years on her skills to get nervous and blow her chance at her biggest break yet. After all, she had dropped out of college for this. When her mother got wind of that, she said, What have you done this for? Because you think you’re going to be some fancy dancer out there? That’s when Olivia knew she would have to prove both to her mother and to the rest of the world her merit as a dancer.

First she would have to get past this audition. Even though she told those other girls that she wasn’t going to let it get into her head, she was still human. The more the line moved throughout the morning, the more Olivia realized that she was about to audition in front of some of the most discerning minds in the industry. This was bigger than any job interview. Hell, Olivia had to treat it as a job interview because she was determined to make this her career. One could not simply drop out of college to become a dancer and then not become a pro.

Remember that this isn’t any worse than any other audition you’ve ever done before. That was a lie. That was a bald-faced lie. Yet Olivia had to believe it as the audition room came into view, and more than one girl stepped out with tears on her cheeks and sighs on her lips.

Olivia Owens! said a man holding a clipboard. You’re up.

She never noticed that she was at the front of the line. Olivia stepped out, shoulders squared and face determined. For all she knew this man was one of the judges. Probably not, but it didn’t hurt to assume so. One could never make enough good first impressions.

I am Olivia, she said with a voice that was much more timid than she desired.

The man nodded and opened the door for her. Good luck. As Olivia passed through the door, she heard beneath the man’s breath, You’ll need it.

That was the last thing she heard before the door shut behind her. Eyes wide and cheeks pale, Olivia was thrust into a quiet world where everyone behind a table was staring at her.

Most of them were the usual suspects. Men of various ages, some of them old and hardened, and some of them young and firm. She could take one look at them and instantly divide them between producers and talent. The producers were there to make sure everything ran smoothly and according to vision. They slumped in their seats, chewed on dirty cuticles, and texted on their big phones. The talents were probably other lead dancers and choreographers. Young, hip, and there to guarantee that the woman chosen could actually perform the moves they had in mind. Based on the faces Olivia had seen come out of this room earlier… well, she had no idea what to expect.

She certainly did not expect to see who sat in the middle of the panel.

He was a young man, perhaps about twenty-five, maybe older. Definitely not above thirty. His dark, scruffy hair looked expertly placed even without any product in it. A black jacket hung loosely on his muscular frame before tapering to meet a pair of dark wash jeans. His face, however… that was the most striking thing about him. Hard jaw, bright eyes, and enough stubble to say he intended to look that way. The man’s skin had a healthy glow to it. Someone who spent a lot of time in the sun, but still took good care to keep it smooth. Olivia didn’t pay much attention to pop culture, but she would recognize Rick Rodriguez anywhere.

In that split second following her entrance, their eyes locked together. Olivia had no idea what she looked like, but she knew that Rick smiled at her, probably the same smile he gave every other woman who walked through that door. The cool and casual way he glanced at her file did not inspire much confidence. Hi, he said with a deep, melodious voice. You must be Olivia. Nice to meet you.

Like the idiot she was, Olivia stood there with her mouth open. Why would he be here? Not once did Olivia ever anticipate that the star of the music video would be there to audition a dancer himself. Sure, any woman chosen would be one he had to dance with, but most talents left these things up to their staff. Men like Rick Rodriguez were usually too busy with their tight schedules to spend the day auditioning pretty women. Oh, that’s why he’s here.

Nice to meet you. Olivia took that moment to nod at each person sitting behind the table. I am Olivia Owens. I’m here to audition for the role of lead dancer in the music video.

Of course you are, said the young man sitting at the far end of the table. He was done up enough to look important, but slumped down in his seat with his hands behind his head. His next snort was reserved for Olivia. You wouldn’t be here if you weren’t auditioning for that kind of role. Do you know how many times today we’ve heard that line? You’re going to have to do better than that if you want to impress us.

Rick waved his hand. Please excuse José. He hasn’t had lunch yet. None of us have.

What did that mean? That Olivia had lost the audition before she even walked through that door? Was everyone going to hurry this along so they could go get some lunch? I was screwed the moment I came in here. All that bravado she had when she woke up that morning went right out the open window on the side of the room.

José picked up a remote and turned on a nearby stereo. The instrumental to Rick’s latest single, Midnight Tango, played in the air. It was a hard beat, a few horns, and enough tempo to get any blood going through the system. But Olivia wasn’t ready yet. She assumed there would be talk before she got started with her dancing.

Come on, we don’t have all day. José sighed and put the remote down. You get three minutes to show us what you got.

What style should I…

Whatever you want, Rick said, doing his damnedest to be reassuring. At this point Olivia assumed he was only wearing a default face that didn’t mean anything at all. She could tell him he was an ugly asshole and he would keep smiling at her like that. No wonder the man was renowned for his perfect public relations track record. Never had he upset an interviewer or producer. He was a media darling, and thus Olivia would have no idea if she was actually impressing him or not. I do suggest that you get started, though. You’ve wasted about one minute already. Are you going to show us what you can do, or not?

The song was still playing. Olivia shrugged off her jacket and threw it on an empty chair. She shook out her arms and waited for the beat to start over before launching into her first move.

Nobody in Olivia’s life had danced more than her over the years. Yet if anyone were to ask her for dancing advice, she would say, Do whatever move feels most natural to you. If the beat speaks to you, move to it. If you want to express the lyrics, move your body in such a way that the world will understand the meaning of the song, even if they don’t speak the same language. Olivia took her own advice over the years. When asked to freestyle like this, she would open her heart and go with the flow.

This song in particular was both sensual and energetic. The beat implored her to move quickly across the floor, showing the panel that she could do quick, precise movements with grace. She threw in some Latin moves when appropriate, but for the most part she stuck with classical teachings as a way to express herself through the dance.

Or that’s what she told herself. In truth, Olivia had been made so nervous that the moment she began to move her body locked up, and she nearly tripped over her own feet.

Half the panel covered their mouths to stifle laughter. Even Rick, who had otherwise been an example of poise, laughed long enough to realize he was doing so. It was sufficient. Olivia realized she had already blown her chance. So much for impressing the panel. That’s it. I’m done. No more time, and no more chances. A weaker dancer would have packed up her things and left. Except Olivia had been there since 8AM. She had been looking forward to this audition for a month. Everyone in her professional circle believed in her. How could she go back to the practice studio and tell her friends that she gave up after one blunder?

Even if she didn’t have a snowflake’s chance in hell getting a spot in the music video, she still had the chance to perform in front of an audience. At the end of the day, that was all Olivia really wanted.

She had about a minute and a half left. As the beat progressed through the song, so did Olivia’s liquid movements through the air. Now it wasn’t about impressing anyone. She was merely dancing for the sake of having fun – and that was when she always shined the most.

So what if they thought she was rough around the edges? So what if Rick Rodriguez and his staff had already decided that she wasn’t the one for them? Olivia twirled on one foot before leaning forward and doing a flawless handstand. She held her legs up in the air, counting the beats until four had passed. Then she rolled forward, her sneakers plopping onto the hardwood floor as her body popped up again.

She wasn’t finished yet. As the song entered its final chorus, Olivia tore up the floor, spinning and kicking and throwing in some moves she had learned over the years. As long as her body could ride the waves of the music, she would keep going. This is all I ever want to do. If she could get even one compliment out of the panel, she would consider it a success.

Compliments do not come easy, however. Especially when Olivia gave one very enthusiastic kick in the panel’s direction. The force and flow of it was so unstoppable that her shoe came right off her foot and flew across the room.

What the… José barely had time to see the shoe coming before he thought to duck. Too late. The sole of Olivia’s sneaker smacked him right in the face, sending him back cursing like a sailor.

The song finished. Olivia came to an abrupt stop in front of the panel. Everyone was quiet – except for José, who muttered while he picked up Olivia’s shoe and slapped it on the table in front of him. Oh my God! All the color drained from Olivia’s face. Shit, shit, shit!

She had already resigned herself to the fact that she would not be getting the part. Yet now here she was, shoeless, and more than likely about to get a blemish on her record. Someone on the panel would talk about this, and then word would get out to the other candidates that someone was stupid enough to wear those kinds of shoes. What had Olivia been thinking? This wasn’t the first time she had a shoe come off while dancing so enthusiastically. One would think that she would know better by now! What, did she start dancing yesterday?

I’m so sorry! Olivia shuffled up to the table and grabbed her shoe before an angry man could destroy it. She hopped on one foot while she put the shoe back on the other, her eyes darting between faces, each of them judging her in their own way. None of those eyes hurt her as much as Rick’s did, however. He looked exactly as he did when Olivia started dancing. He was checked out the whole time? That was more insulting than an old dance instructor insinuating that Olivia only got into dance for the cute guys.

She apologized again, grabbed her jacket, and darted out of the room. There was barely time to hear the door shut behind her before she was halfway out of the building, aware that every other woman at the audition was staring at her as if her ass had been on fire.

***

The door had barely swung shut when Rick slapped his hand on the table and finally released his compressed laughter.

He was the only one laughing. Even so, he couldn’t stop. The image of that young woman’s shoe falling off her foot and smacking José right in the pretentious face was too good to pass up. I have never seen anything like that before! The dozens of women who had come and gone during the audition did lots of things to make themselves stick out in his memory. Some of them could do intricate dance moves that only masters could perform on a regular basis. Others wore revealing clothing that advertised more than Rick was willing to take on for this music video. But he could safely say that no one danced so hard and so vigorously that her shoe left its mark on someone in the audience.

I don’t see what’s so damn funny. José was still rubbing his face, his pen down on his clipboard and his expression anything but amused. I highly doubt you would like to get practically kicked in the face.

Come on, I’m sure you’ve had worse happen in practice studios. Rick was still chuckling. As much as he respected and admired his lead choreographer, he could really have a stick up his ass sometimes. José already came to these auditions grumbling into his coffee cup and talking about how he wanted to get everything over with. By the third girl that day he was bemoaning the state of the art of dance in today’s society. By the tenth girl he was making up excuses to go to the bathroom. By the twentieth? Anarchy in our midst. Rick had to admit that he was kind of bored by the time Olivia entered the room. One could only watch so many auditions before their brain began to melt. Yet he had to admit that the young woman who ran out of the room definitely stuck out in his mind now. There’s a story to tell at the next party.

Finally Rick’s good attitude about the event passed on to the other men sitting at the table. They laughed, albeit uneasily. I once had a guy crash right into the table here, the producer to Rick’s left said. Guy completely overshot his jump and nearly took my head off my shoulders. Consider yourself lucky, Juarez.

José muttered about inconsiderate young women and suggested that they all take another bathroom break. They still had two more girls to audition before they got lunch, but even Rick was ready to call it a wrap. Do we really need to sit through a whole afternoon of more auditions? Everyone had more or less already decided that Clara from earlier was clearly the greatest choice available. She had the pedigree as the daughter of one of America’s top Latin dance couples. Although she came highly recommended by the agency, Rick insisted on auditions. One never knew when they might find new talent. Even if said talent had a habit of sticking a rogue shoe up José’s nose. Honestly, we should hire that last girl.

Everyone at the table looked at Rick, some of them with bemusement in their eyes, and others tsking in their throats. He knew what they were thinking. Rick’s being an ass again. Not his fault that he had a bit of a reputation when it came to wanting to take on the least likely of candidates in anything. Okay, so maybe it really was his fault. Could any of them blame him? That was hilarious!

You all saw how well she danced before the incident. Rick knew he wasn’t the only one who admired the way Olivia included a few of his favorite moves in her routine. Plus the way she moved…she was a bit rough around the edges, as expected of a young woman from a small city with little dance culture, but she had something that Rick always admired – passion. He had known hundreds of women through his short time in the industry who were technically fantastic on the dance floor, but had so little heart for their art that it was like watching a robot attempt to perform Swan Lake. Rick admitted that Clara had both skill and passion, but she was the easy and safe choice. Since when did he ever go with easy or safe? Look, I liked Clara a lot too. I don’t doubt that she would make an excellent star in the music video. We’re going to need other dancers too, however. Have any of them been casted yet? He looked to José for answers.

The man shook his head. "You know we don’t usually do that until the week before. Fewer

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