Fiction Friday; Dance in the Dark

This is a scene from a Steven Universe fanfiction I'm writing with a friend. I'm enjoying myself immensely, and I was particularly pleased with how this one turned out.

Storage crates, cubbies, nets, boxes, and cylinders. They were all shadows in the cargo hold, dim shapes outlined by the light from their single small lantern. Fidget sat on a crate with her knees drawn up to her chest, watching as Opal hummed faintly to herself and swayed, stepping in a tight circle and embracing herself. Her enormous shadow slid across the walls and jumped from one crate to the next, adding a sort of frantic energy to her dance.


But the dance.


The smooth movements of each leg, of her slender arms, of her long white hair. It was hypnotic.


Suddenly, Opal paused and, with a soft smile, offered a hand to her new friend. Fidget twitched, surprised, and quickly looked up into Opal's long, dark face. Yes, she was still smiling, as inviting as ever.


"Dance with me," she whispered, the cadence of those words somehow matching the snatches of tune she'd heard the fusion humming earlier. Fidget hesitated. This wasn't exactly something she'd envisioned when she had brought her down here. This wasn't something she had envisioned ever.


But... but this might be her only chance to dance with Opal. This might be her only change to fuse with her. If fusion was what she was offering. It wasn't really clear.


Cautiously, Fidget placed her smaller, paler hand in Opal's large, soft one. The long red fingers closed around Fidget's hand and wrist, pulling her to her feet, bringing her close. There was warmth between them, and a sort of staticky feeling that Fidget couldn't identify. This wasn't like it had been with her best friend and fellow Pearl, Kitty. This was nothing like that. This was something much more... energized. At the same time, there was none of the desperation that ran under everything when she and Kitty fused.


Held close to Opal's long-legged body, she struggled to predict and keep up with the steps of this strange dance. Close enough to hear Opal's humming more clearly, she was better able to follow the music, at least, but it was still a struggle to keep up with her.


"Relax," murmured Opal, a smile in her tone. "Let the music take you."


That sounded ominous. But there was nothing at all threatening about the way she spoke or the way she moved. Fidget tried to concentrate on the tune the fusion was humming. It was haunting and hard to predict, but very pretty. Rather like Opal herself. Beautiful, but unknown. As she let her thoughts wander, it became easier to follow the music, to follow Opal's lead. Or maybe Opal was getting better at leading her. It was hard to tell. Did it really matter, either way? The fact was, the dance was getting easier.


"Thank you. For... including me." Fidget blushed a deep, sunshine yellow, and Opal chuckled softly.


"Thank you for coming. I've never had a friend I can trust before. It feels nice." Her hands squeezed Fidget's gently, and they twirled together in the darkness, content with the warmth between them.


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©2020 by Eleanor Taylor.

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