Lumos

I Feel Like Dancing

London | February 18, 1986

It’s late one evening when Darius strides confidently into a Muggle dance club, dressed in a white suit with a light pink shirt underneath like someone who jumped right out of an ‘80s music video. It is far from his usual monotone wardrobe of gray t-shirts and black pants, but tonight is a special occasion. Tonight… he has to cheer up Max, who is hopefully following closely behind. “Oh…kay,” he says once they’re inside, sliding his hands into his pockets and looking around the club with an exceedingly judgmental eye. “I’m going to need a drink or five. What can I get you?”

Max pulls up right behind Darius, clad in equally fabulous Muggle attire. Under a white leather jacket (with stunning shoulder pads), she sports a black and red off-the-shouder blouse, followed by a black mini skirt and white leather boots. To top it off, her hair has been teased to hell and back, adding about four inches to her height. She surveys the room, eyes outlined by dark shadow and then slowly smirks with a full crimson lip. The 80s has exploded, and it doesn't look half bad. "I want something in a fruit. Coconut or pineapple is good. If not, something that's been set on fire."

"Is there perhaps a coconut drink that also catches fire? Let's find out." Darius goes up to the bar and literally orders, "Something with coconut on fire, and a…" he pauses, eyeing the bottles on display, before finishing, "…a gin and tonic, actually." While the bartender gets to their order, he turns to give Maddox a proper look-over, leaning sideways against the bar as he does. "Are we talking about Things tonight, or are we drinking and dancing and pretending like Things don't exist?"

Max looks up at Darius, pondering his question with an all-too-serious expression. It's probably fake. "Well depends. Are you actually interested in hearing about said Things or not? I'm surprisingly all cried out, so you don't have to worry about Emotions getting on you, darling." A woman clad in a black sequined tutu saunters past them. Max stares longingly. "I should have worn that…"

"Of course I'm interested," Darius replies, sounding hurt by the accusation implied. "I just don't want to ask if you'd prefer to spend a night forgetting. Either are perfectly valid options." When she points out the tutu, he watches the woman pass – or stares, to be more accurate – tilting his head just a fraction of an inch to the side as he does. "For the record," he says, eyes still on miss tutu over there, "I don't want to talk about Paige."

"Oh, well that's actually quite decent of you," Max starts, then catches Darius leer at the tutu. "Ah, yeah I can see that." The bartender finally slides their drinks towards them. She pulls out Muggle money and tosses it over to the man with a smile of gratitude. With flaming coconut in one hand, she pushes Dare's gin and tonic into his chest. "Cheers!"

The gin to his chest causes Darius to turn his attention back on Maddox, and he offers a grin in exchange. "Um, I was going to buy the drinks. You could at least let me do that," he protests, but he doesn't go so far as to try and shove money at her. He instead lifts his drink. "Cheers! To whatever the night brings us." He has a sip, then winces and starts to fiddle with his drink: fishing out the lime, and giving it a proper squeeze before he tastes it again. Better. "So," he says, leaning against the bar and surveying his surroundings once more, "what are your goals for the night, then?"

"You'll get the next round, don't you worry!" Max quips. She clinks her delightfully flaming coconut against his glass and then with a sturdy breath, extinguishes it. Taking a sip, she moans. "This is the best thing I've ever tasted…ever. Try it!" She shoves the pink straw at Darius' face. "Just to get the elephant out of the room….he sent me an owl. He's moved on and he wants to be friends. For Roxie, you know? I…weirdly agree. Sure, I fucking cried until my face melted. But now I'm weirdly ok with it. He deserves to be happy. I actually want him to be. As for tonight's goals, a couple more coconuts and at least one Phil Collins song. What about you?"

Darius leans over to take a sip of her coconut. When he straightens up again, he’s frowning at said coconut, but nodding slowly. “Huh. I would not have guessed,” he agrees. “Maybe I’ll try one of those next.” He leans back to listen again, nodding along. “Yea, sure. That’s kind of shit though. And you can scream at the wind if you need to. But sure, eventually, you should be happy too. There are plenty of dolphins in the ocean.” When she turns his question back on him, he grins. “I just want you to have a good night. I’ll serenade you with Phil Collins myself, if that’s what it takes.”

Max shrugs, "Que sera, sera." Suddenly, the music swells up from the DJ stage. A familiar drum beat starts to ramp up, follow by a fantastically synth-y solo. /We're talking away/ I don't know what/ I'm to say I'll say it anyway/ Today's another day to find you /Shying away/ Her eyes go wide and she grips Dare's elbow. "You have five seconds to finish your drink!" In three chugs, the coconut dies. She starts to pull him towards the lighted dance floor.

Darius realizes what is happening about two seconds too late. He’s still chugging his g&t as he’s pulled onto the dance floor, managing to abandon it on a nearby bar table in the Knick of time. And as they dance, he does his best to pull out all the tricks, which for him basically just mean spinning Max around on occasion and moving to the beat the rest of the time.

Max whirls around to the beat, doing a fun shoulder thing as seen in most Muggle parties. She gets up on her toes and belts the high notes, "IN A DAY OR TWOOOOOOO," pointing up at the ceiling with both hands. Muggles around them dance furiously and sing along as well. Who knew they'd fit in so well?

Max isn't the only one who's thrilled about the current song choice. Tray has been sitting at the bar, slowly nursing dry martini, but once the music starts he slurps it down and immediately gets up to go to the dance floor. His dark hair is heavy on the bangs and they've been expertely styled – it must be magic: not even Aquanet could provide that kind of hold – and his overall look is in the key of too much denim. He drops the jacket on a chair, at least, before moving onto the dance floor. He's trying to dance his way through the crowd to find his friends, but he gets caught up in the crowd around Max and Darius on his way there.

Darius dances along, actually not singing for once. Maybe he needs another drink first. But he shakes his hips and wiggles his shoulders, and all in all he at least looks to be enjoying this, judgmental looks aside. He even pulls his suit jacket off his shoulders for a moment before popping it back on.

Max bursts out laughing as Darius pops his jacket on and off again. She bounces from foot to foot, alternating fist pumping movements. As the song reaches its crescendo, she reaches up and ruffles her hair. Then in a grand sweep, throws her head back- most likely swatting whoever may be behind her.

Tray's dancing is energetic, at least. He's spinning on the edge of his boot when Max throws back her head and hits him. "Shit!" he shouts, turning around dramatically and completely losing the rhythm. "Sorry! Are you okay?"

The song begins to change. A heavy, punchy synth permeates the room. /Sweet dreams are made of this/ Who am I to disagree?/ Upon hearing the expletive, Max looks turns around abruptly. "Holy crap! I'm SO sorry! Did I hit you hard?" she asks, looking absolutely mortified. "It was an accident, I swear!"

"God, no, I thought I hit you," Tray says. The way he's having this conversation, it seems like he's probably had it before (and judging by his erratic dancing a few moments ago, it's probably pretty easy to guess why). He reaches up to run a hand through his hair, which springs immediately back to its former shape. "You're okay though?"

Guilt runs hard in Max's family. "Are you sure? I feel bad, though." She offers the man a sheepish smile. "My hair might have deflated a bit, but I'm ok. Let me buy you a drink to make up for it? Whatever I did or didn't do?"

"Well I've literally never turned that offer down," Tray says honestly, glancing briefly at Darius before he looks back at Max. "But don't do it out of guilt, do it because you like me." He flashes her his most charming grin (level: pretty damn charming) but he's already moving a bit to the new song. Not full dancing: casual, mid-conversation dancing.

Max notices the glance towards Darius and peeks back at her friend. Oh right, that must look weird. As she's about to offer an explanation, she gets caught off guard by Tray's remark. She snorts a very unflattering snort. "Wow, yeah you don't seem that hurt after all," she muses. Waving a 'be right back' hand towards Darius, Max nods towards the bar. "After you."

Jude, it would seem, is also out for a night of dancing. Alone or with someone else, it is hard to tell, as the woman is currently dancing by herself and very enthusiastically. She's wearing a black mini skirt with black tights and black boots with a chunky heel, all paired with a blue blouse with some nice shoulder pads. Her hair is tied up with a rhinestone pin holding some stray pieces of hair off her face. Her rhythm is actually really good though her moves are not standard. She clearly is letting loose and not very concerned about who is watching. She's even created a nice little bubble around herself. Though finally she does stop dancing, in need of a drink, and turns, half-dancing her way towards the bar.

Darius continues to dance, barely acknowledging that his partner is no longer paying him any attention. And as Max wanders off with another man, he dances his way to a different bar, one in view of where Max is heading but far enough away to give the girl some privacy, where he’ll order himself a second gin and tonic while glancing around, trying to decide what to do to occupy himself while Max is tied up.

Tray winks at her and then leads the way back to the bar. He dances to get through the crowd on the way back, and he's… well, he can hold a rhythm and he's VERY enthusiastic. People tend to sort of clear out of his way when they notice him, though. "What've you been having?" He asks as they get closer. "I had a martini and it was absolutely disgusting." He says this with relish, as if that was exactly the experience he'd hoped to have.

Max bobs her shoulders to the beat as she follows in Tray’s wake. Eyeing his dance moves, she begins to wonder what she’s just gotten herself into. She surreptitiously glances over her shoulder to locate Dare. Once her safety net is found, “A flaming coconut thing. It’s no disgusting martini, but it has the added bonus of being set on fire,” she laughs. As they mosey up to the bar, she plants two feet on the footrests and props herself up to get the bartenders attention. “So you want another martini?” she asks Tray.

Darius is still hanging out on his own, now with a fresh drink in hand. A girl next to him has started talking to him, but he’s probably answering her questions quite literally and is partially distracted by trying to ensure his friend hasn’t been accosted by some villain. Meanwhile, the music plays: ‘Dig if you will the picture/ Of you And I engaged in a kiss…’

Seraphine had not intended to come out this evening, but Jude convinced her to do so. Due to a last minute work thing she got here later than she expected to. She did have time to put some effort into her appearance, opting for a black lace top that is off her shoulder, with a black mini dress underneath it and matching tights. Her heeled boots add a few extra inches to her height, but thankfully she hasn't given in to the over teasing and hairspray that the muggles are so fond of. There are just some things you don't do for work. Right now she's gotten herself a drink, something fruity that she is obviously drinking to give her the liquid courage she is going to need to get on the dance floor. She's not far down the bar from Darius, but hasn't spotted him, or even think that he'd be in a place like this. But she does spot Jude and raises her hand to get her attention, and even tries to call out, but it's easily not loud enough to be heard over the music.

"God no," Tray says, laughing as he leans against the bar next to Max. "I'll just have a shot of whiskey. I'm a one-mistake-a-night kinda guy." Spoken like someone who's made enough mistakes to begin quantifying them. He looks around the bar a bit, but his friends are currently nowhere in sight.

"Are you, then? Shot of whiskey for the gentleman and I'll take another coconut." Max nods at the bartender, who then begins preparing the drinks. "I'm Maddox, by the way. What do they call you?" She then takes a moment to blatantly give him a once-over. Not bad. She motions at him with a finger, "Digging this jean thing by the way." The drinks arrive and she happily passes his whiskey over. "Cheers and sorry!"

Jude is in her own little world as she weaves through the people on her way to the bar, never quite stopping dancing. She wiggles into a free spot at the bar just near Max and Tray. She waves a hand to get the bar tender’s attention, leaning over the counter a little. “Can I have a coke, please? No, just a coke. In a glass. Maybe with a straw.” Her Scottish accent comes through a bit stronger as she yells over the music at the bartender. It’s while she’s waiting for her drink to be delivered that she spots Sera finally, lifting a hand to wave back at her. She makes a weird gesture with her hand after, trying to indicate they should meet through the crowd after she gets her drink. And while she waits for her drink she searches through her wallet for some coins.

"I'm Tray," he says, giving her a little half salute in greeting. He thanks her for complimenting his look and starts to say something about it, but he's cut off by the arrival of their drinks. "Cheers!" He says, toasting the shot glass in her direction before downing it. He notices Jude's order during this process and glances at her a little incredulously. "You oughta put some rum in that. Helps the dancefloor go down a bit easier." He pairs this advice with a friendly smile, though.

Jude turns to Tray at his comment, lifting her eyebrows. “I’m not a pirate,” she tells him with a grin. “And the dance floor can barely keep up as it is.” Her coke is finally delivered and she grabs it after paying, taking a sip from the straw. “Plus, real Scottish women drink whiskey. Except when they’re in charge of their own…taxi home.” There is a long pause before taxi, the Muggleborn adding the word in quickly enough.

Once Tray and Jude begin to talk, Max nods along while sipping her coconut. Then, like the sound of an angel, a glorious horn solo blares on the dance floor. Her face lights up like Christmas. /There’s a girl that’s been on my mind / All the time/ “I gotta go!” She flashes Tray a grin. “Well we’re even, enjoy your night!” And she’s off into the crowd. “DARIUS!!” she howls in her friend’s direction. “It’s my song! Get over here!”

The woman Darius has been talking to has turned away to write something on a napkin, which Darius sees as a perfect opportunity to rejoin Max, now that she has separated herself from her new friend. He dances right over, taking her by the hand and spinning her around if she’ll let him. “What happened?” He asks, leaning in close for the moment to be heard over the music. “Didn’t that guy just buy you a drink?” Meanwhile, the girl who’d been writing on the napkin looks extremely offended when she notices Darius has left.(edited)

Max beams from ear to ear as Darius spins her. This is clearly her ultimate jam. "SU-SU-SSUDIO!" she belts, before bringing it in so she doesn't deafen him. "I bought HIM a drink. I hit the guy by accident, so I felt bad. Sorry I ditched you!" Looking past Darius, she eyes the trail of broken hearts and shakes her head. "Anyway, I'm two for two on buying men drinks tonight. Independence is a bitch, aint it?"

“Well stop being so quick about paying!” Darius says as he shimmies towards her. “I’ll buy you however many drinks you want. Long gone are the days where I need to play guitar in the streets for ice cream money.” He winks, grinning to himself at that memory. “And no apology necessary. If you want to go back and make out with him, I fully support that.” He shuts up for a minute after that, too focused on keeping up with Max’s energy.

With hands in the air, Max moves her hips to the beat. She then matches Darius' moves. "Deal. I think I'm onto shots now." Her smile widens a bit more. "Aww yeah! Hey, do you remember that one time you took a roofie for me at that bar? God, we can't go ANYWHERE together." She cackles to herself as she dances. At his last offering she simply shrugs. "The night is young!"

“Oh no, no more flaming coconut drinks?” Darius asks, pouting. “Just don’t get so drunk I need to take you to Mungo’s. It’s not the best look for either of us.” He steps back to start rolling his hands together, bouncing to the music, but stops to laugh at what she says next. “Ehm, no?! What?! Why would I take a roofie FOR you?!”

"Why would anyone? You DIDN'T, whoever it was roofied YOU," Max bursts out laughing and then quickly glances around. "Ok that's like…not funny these days." She cha-cha's up closer to Darius. "One tequila shot, some lime, no roofies please."

“Really? Why would anyone…?” But Darius doesn’t finish his sentence, and instead shakes his head. ”In my defense, it sounds like there’s a reason I don’t remember this!” He dances further back, rolling his arms again before spinning 540 degrees and marching back to the bar to get another round.

Seraphine got distracted by another gentleman so it takes her a moment to respond. Once she spots Jude she shakes her head, gesturing to her easily spilled drink, the full dance floor and her dress. Since yelling that loud over the noise is foolish.

Tray nods goodbye at Max as she leaves, and then watches her as she heads back to the dancefloor while Jude explains her current drink. When she's done, though, he gives her a look like she just spoke Mermish. "I… guess?" he says, in a way that's not very convinced. "I don't take taxis much. I thought they sort of, er, controlled themselves."

Jude takes a long sip from her coke through the straw, watching Tray carefully. "Nope," she says finally. "You are no muggle then," she adds after a moment. "And rum and coke? Is that a thing. It doesn't sound very right. But I never drink rum, so I suppose I wouldn't know," she rambles distractedly.

Max dances around to her favorite song, looking dejected when it begins to change. Heavy drum beat and baseline…. /Tongue tied or short of breath don't even try/ Try a little harder/ Something's wrong, you're not naive, you must be strong / Ooh, baby try/ She slows down her moves to match the song. Where the hell is Darius with her drink?

Darius returns quickly enough, carrying two overflowing shots of tequila in one hand, and a small cup with lime wedges and salt on the rim in the other. One of the shot glasses is offered up to Max. "Don't make me regret this," he yells to her over the music. "I swear I'm going to slow down after this. I can't apparate you home if I'm drunk!"

"How about if I promise to apparate myself home?" Max takes the overflowing glass and a lime wedge in one palm, then grabs Darius' hand that's holding the cup. She pulls it close to her mouth to lick the salt off the rim, if he doesn't recoil. "Tonight we drink like Muggles!" Which is to say, a lot.

“Well that still leaves the open question as to where I’m going to sleep,” Darius says with a laugh. He doesn’t protest her maneuvering, doing his best to hold the glasses steady, and once she’s had her bit he takes the salt from the other side of the rim. Teamwork!

After salting herself, Max chomps down on the lime. Through gritted teeth- "You can stay at Paige's, duh!" With a wink she kicks back the shot in a gulp. Holy. Shit. As the drink pummels her brain, she lets out an ecstatic "WOO!"(edited)

When Darius takes his shot, he immediately winces, as if just swallowing this drivel is causing him a severe amount of pain. But he fights through it, and grabs for a line himself. “I can not stay at Paige’s!” He shouts, throwing the lime to the ground. He’s enough drinks in to do such things.

"Why the hell not? Aren't you two-" Max stops dead in her tracks as the song changes. A wistful piano fills the room and the lights dim for effect. It's a slow one, ladies and gentlemen. /Highway run/ Into the midnight sun/ Wheels go round and round/ You're on my mind/ All around them, people start coupling up and slow dancing. She looks back at Darius, slightly flustered. "Do we run or…?"

“No! I mean. I don’t know what you mean actually. Probably no?” Darius manages to say before the change in music has him slow his movements to a halt. He looks around at all the people coupling up before turning back to Max. “Ehm. Eh, it’s me or that guy you bought a drink for. Up to you.”

Max looks around but has seemingly lost sight of Tray. It would probably be odd running back to get him, also the alcohol is beginning to take effect so…”You’ll do. Just keep your hands off my ass ok?” she jokes.(edited)

"What?" Tray says, a little flustered. "I am too a mug-" He cuts himself off abruptly. "Alright, alright. But you WOULDN'T have known if you weren't, too," he tells Jude. "I am very good at walking the muggle streets undetected." He definitely sounds like he believes that this is true, anyway.

Jude smirks looking rather pleased at Tray's reaction, but she laughs after. "I was just taking a guess because of your comment about taxis! Though that could go either way." At his second comment though she continues to laugh softly, taking another sip of her coke. "I'd be curious to see that. Muggleborn," she adds softly, jabbing herself in the chest with her thumb to indicate she is talking about herself.

"What, that I don't take them?" Tray looks genuinely confused at this, and it doesn't occur to him for even a second that maybe that's not the part of his comment that was a giveaway. "Surely not ALL of them take taxis, right?" He gives her a once over when she says she's muggleborn, as if he expects to see it on her, and then just nods. "Is that what brought you here, then?"

Jude just laughs, shaking her head. She slurps the rest of her coke down in one go. “And no, not all of them take taxis. But if you’re fat from home and had a bit too much, it’s the easiest option.” She leans over the bar trying to get the bartenders attention again. “The music brought me here. It’s nice to just let loose sometimes. And well, Muggle clubs always seem to be better. What brought you here?” She asks curiously.

Tray looms genuinely puzzled for a moment (like, he might not even know what a taxi is levels of puzzled) but he just shakes his head. "Bizzare." He also glances back at the bartender. "My friends like this place," he says, "but I lost them somewhere in the melee." A vague wave at the dancefloor.

“Oh gee thanks,” Darius responds, but he’s laughing too. He places his hands on her hips, not too unlike a preteen at his first dance, and begins to sway to the music. Or at least he’s trying to sway to the music – that last shot has him off beat juuuust a bit. “I will try to control myself.”

Max slow dances with Darius, making sure to leave enough room for Jesus in between them. As the song ends, she yawns drunkenly. "Awright time to go home! I'll sneak you in and you can sleep on the floor. The rest is up to you." She takes his arm, if he lets her, and leads him off the dance floor and to Paige's flat.

“This bartender is much too slow,” Jude decides, turning away from the bar. “Yeah, this place can do that. My friend is down the bar and trying to get to her seems like a Herculean feat. But! I am going to go dance. Lovely to meet you,” she tells tray with a smile, though she doesn’t actually introduce herself. “Good luck with the taxis!” she adds before trying to squeeze off into the crowd.

It doesn't matter if you're at a muggle or a wizard club there is one thing that is a universal truth. The line for the bathroom is always super long. Seraphine tried to avoid going but she hit a point where she couldn't wait any longer. In the time she was gone, she heard someone life story and became new best friends with a drunk girl who proceeded vomit in the sink. Thankfully none got on her dress. By the time she's put she spots Jude on the dance floor and makes her way over. "Merlin's hairy arse, what a night, and I'm not even drunk. So much for getting you laid!"

"I'll need it! Because I take Taxis!" Tray shouts after Jude as she starts to leave. Is he actually worried that the surrounding Muggles won't think he can handle a taxi? It certainly seems that way. At any rate, he waits for the bartender to finally notice him and then orders another shot before wending his way back into the crowd, in search of his friends.

"I didn't expect it so be so packed," Jude yells at Sera. The comment about getting her laid is completely ignored as she grabs her friend's hand and drags her deeper into the crowd. "Come on. I have some new dance moves to test out." And into the crowd the two disappear to dance the night away. And probably take a taxi home. Maybe.

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