In a moment of spontaneity, James escorted Sacha onto the dance floor as the band blasted out a lively swing. All eyes turned in their direction as the couple moved across the freshly waxed wooden floor with fluid movements that seem effortless and never missed a beat. Picking up on the rhythm, others slowly joined them until there was just enough room to move around. There were plenty of those who were far too sophisticated to get up and join in, however, enough hip cats danced with their sexy kittens and knew how to move. Jackets were thrown aside and sleeves rolled up as the music intensified, skirts and layers of chiffon twirling in the air as girls were tossed around. Any who disapproved did not have to watch, though their remarks that the dancing was vulgar were being muttered loudly enough for the sweaty bodies to hear the complaints. No one would dare to try to put a stop to it, however. Riots were known to ensue when young men and women—particularly those who had imbibed alcohol—were told they could not have fun. The dance floor was alive with moving couples in the midst of some primitive mating ritual, fueled by adrenaline and emitting pheromones.
As the evening progressed into late hours, only a few people remained at the Flamingo, their bodies weary but giving no indication of being ready to stop partying. Eventually, James and Sacha were the last ones that danced cheek to cheek as they were serenaded by the band. Then it was last call; the janitors were busy sweeping up the floor and turning chairs upside down on the tables so it could be washed. The two made their way outside and stood on the sidewalk with arms interlocked, sharing the joint Sacha had brought and fondly staring up at the stars.
“That was fantastic,” she sighed.
“Yes, I am inclined to agree,” James replied, “and quite pleased that you enjoyed yourself, Sacha.”
“Been a long time since I have.”
Her perfume wafted up his nose as he held her close. “Seems we have that in common, and I sure am happy to have had your company this evening.”
“That means a lot to me,” Sacha replied with a smile.
“It is the absolute truth.”
“I suppose we have to part ways now,” she said as the ’39 Buick pulled up.
“Now there is no reason to fret, as this is only good-bye for the moment.” James paused to remove his necklace and secured it around her neck. “While I have to go my own way right now, I can promise that I will see you again.”
This time Sacha smiled. “Yes, I certainly look forward to that.”
James leaned her against the door of the Buick, and their lips met in a passionate kiss. The entire night had been a whirlwind of excitement, and never once did she feel guilty for enjoying every moment of it. The gift he presented her with had been quite the surprise, as no one else had ever made such a gesture—except for her father. It was always better to give of oneself, and so she had made him things out of love and respect. In return, he always managed to have a present of some sort for his precious angel. Even if it seemed insignificant, Sacha had appreciated them all. Perhaps there was good reason behind James’ gesture as well.
There was no mistake that she was slightly disappointed their evening together had to come to an end, and she could see it in his eyes as he pulled away. While he did not want to part either, the decision to do so was out of necessity—something he could not explain to her at that moment—and so Sacha reluctantly climbed into the Buick. James lingered at the door as though he wanted to get in with her, or that there was something else he had to say. She smiled lovingly and clasped his hand in reassurance she would trust his word, and that was all there needed to be said. Their eyes locked as her hand slipped away and the door closed. James watched the vehicle pull away, overwhelmed by lust, love and a dull ache in the pit of his stomach.