Danny was the last person she had expected to see at Ed's. But there he was! Six months ago, she would have been more shocked to not see him at Ed's Country Ballroom, but that was before he joined the Navy. She didn't realize how much she actually missed Danny until she saw him, standing there across the dancefloor. He hadn't seen her though. Not yet.
She backed up through the crowd, and make a wide arc around the dancefloor to approach Danny from behind. Then she put her hands over his eyes.
When he turned around, the look on his face went from confusion, to recognition, to pleasant surprise. He grabbed her up in an embrace that lifted her feet off the floor.
"What are you doing here??" She asked, slightly out of breath.
"I'm AWOL." He laughed, and introduced her to his partners in crime; buddies from the Navy who had made the crazy, all night drive from Florida to Texas with him, just for the weekend.
They made small talk for a bit, then Danny said, "Let's dance", just as a slow country song began to play. The song, One More Day, by Diamond Rio, was one that would always remind her of Danny from that day forward.
"Well you're gettin' pretty good at this 2-steppin' thing!" Danny said as he guided her across the floor.
"Thanks," she smiled, "I learned from the best."
Danny beamed down at her and shook his head.
They didn't talk much during that song, they just danced. But there was something so perfect about the way he held her in his arms. Strong, but gently. He guided her with experience and ease, and they danced together as if they'd been doing it their whole lives.
When the dance finally ended, he spun her once, and dipped her low. She laughed as her long hair cascaded about her shoulders, almost touching the floor. Then he took her hand and led her off the floor, to a table situated away from the noise and clatter of the crowd.
"So how are you, really?" She asked as they sat down across from each other.
Danny sighed. "I miss home. I miss my family, and my friends... and you."
She blushed and couldn't help smiling.
"I've missed you too, believe it or not."
"Well why haven't you written me?" He asked.
"I don't have your address! I didn't even know where you were stationed before tonight!"
"Ok well I'll give it you." He said.
Just then her sister approached, flanked by her 2 friends. They had all ridden together to Ed's, and she just realized they probably had been wondering where she'd wandered off to. It was starting to get late. Almost curfew.
"We're about to go. Do you wanna meet us outside?"
She stole a glance back at Danny, "Yea, I'll be out in a minute."
Her sister and friends walked towards the door, and she and Danny stood.
"One more dance before you go?" Danny asked.
When the dance was over, he spun her again, and pulled her into an embrace. Surprising herself, she planted a kiss on his cheek. Still holding onto her hands, he pulled back and stared at her. She would never in all her life forget the image of his face in that moment. The twinkle in his crystal blue eyes, his look of surprise, his crooked, boyish grin. Before he could say anything, she released his hands and began to walk off the dancefloor.
"Bye Danny." She said.
He stood, glued to that spot on the dancefloor, staring after her, his image burned into her memory as she exited the building.
Her sister and 2 friends were waiting in the parking lot.
"Are you ok?" Her sister asked with concern.
"I'm fine." She said.
When they got home, she went up to her room and sobbed. Was this really what it felt like to fall in love?