Shall We Dance?

Sooo sleepy. Why do I push this off until the last parts of my day?

Oh, because people are around earlier and I get easily distracted and deadlines are the only thing that keeps my butt in shape at this point. All right, I guess it’s time to swing back over to Izzy, John, and Ryssa and the scene that should practically write itself. Or not.

Twelve more days, or 6,574 words, whichever comes first. This has been good practice though, I’ll give it that.

  • “Tell me again why that’s wrong?”
  • “This song makes me want to dance!”
  • “This is the job I’ve dreamed of.”

It was lunch hour. John straightened up the piles of paper and odd gadgets on the edge of his desk, making way for the steaming plates of Chinese he had set up on the remaining available space. It was the one day a week his two favourite junior healers had the same lunch period, and the one day that his office got invaded.

It was to help keep him organised, Izzy had teased when they barged in the first time, startling him. He knew better though, for the mess hall at the hospital was loud and crowded, and the food was just on the low end of average. Here he provided a meal of his choosing and they were able to talk in peace and quiet.

Well, relatively quiet, for John had a radio going at all times in his small office. It helped keep him focused and sometimes granted him a much-needed reprieve for a few minutes during particular songs he enjoyed.

The door opened, and he smiled as the two petite brunettes made their way in, closing the door behind them. Their eyes lit up as the smell reached them. “I think I love you,” Ryssa greeted him with a quick hug.

Izzy laughed, also hugging John. “Be careful, lest your hubby hears those words.”

“Tell me again why that’s wrong?” It was well known to everyone that Ryssa and Jackson were the epitome of what a good relationship looked like, and a standard many strove to achieve for themselves. “Jackson knows perfectly well my affection for him, and that after a morning like this one, I can’t be held responsible for my words in the face of such a delightful sight.” It had been quite a morning, with the all-hands-on-deck deck call, and neither of the two had a moment’s respite until now.

“I’m glad it pleases you,” John smiled at them. This was what he did it really did it for, the happy smiles of his friends to be able to escape from hospital madness and have an hour to decompress. “Sit, before the food gets cold, and tell me of this horrible morning you two faced.”

They passed around plates and filled them, speaking of the morning as they went. John had grabbed the usual spread, with pork fried rice for Izzy, combination lo mein for Ryssa, and beef chow fun for himself, as well as crab cheese wontons, mixed vegetables, and a sesame chicken to share.

“This is the job I’ve dreamed of,” Ryssa noted, finally sitting and letting herself melt into the chair. “At least, that’s what I keep telling myself when running from one room to another in a blind panic.”

“I wouldn’t say blind panic.” A very content smile grew upon Izzy’s face as she dug into the food. It was just what she needed, a mid week pick-me-up and was so glad that John was willing to accommodate them. “We got it sorted, and not invoking the wrath of either of John’s cousins while we were at it.”

It took John a moment to finish extracting himself from the long noodle, and the girls giggled as he chewed frantically before talking: “They aren’t that scary.”

“You say that because they aren’t in charge of you,” Izzy replied. “In their full fledged, competitive wrath, they can be a bit intimidating.”

“I grew up with them. Sort of.” Tobias Cromwell and Cassie Eldridge were both nine years older and grew up in the families of the Clan he didn’t see on a near daily basis, but there was no escaping family as one of the Clan. Everyone was close, and even those who weren’t close still happened to be closer than those in a normal family dynamic, John found. “I know how they can get.”

“They do try to keep it semi-professional in front of others,” Ryssa stuck up for their senior healers. “It’s just when it’s the healers, especially those of us who have been around for a while, that it gets a bit uncomfortable.”

“Friendly competition promotes excellence.” At least, that’s what he had been told since he was young. “With them, there’s even less carelessness than could potentially happen since they’re both trying to outdo each other. In fact, I remember a few years ago…” John told them one of the many stories that he had on hand, letting the girls eat.

This was a much needed hour for all of them, and they took their time eating and exchanging stories as they went. As the hour started to draw to a close, John got a bit distracted with what was on the radio and less on what the girls were saying.

He leant back in his chair, turning up the sound, and burst into a wide smile. “This song makes me want to dance!” He stood, holding out a hand to Izzy, who accepted, twirling into his arms with a laugh.

“Remember when we danced to this at school?”


Ryssa looked on, smiling. She, just like everyone, knew that John was very affectionate toward Izzy, and her friend, while she liked him and thought him a very close friend, was happily engaged to someone else. It was a bit of a mess, really, especially with how close the two of them acted, but it seemed to be enough for John, and Izzy… well, Izzy was affectionate toward anyone who would give her attention. That wasn’t a bad thing, as Izzy was very open and very easy to talk to, and her fiancee, Hugh Emmerson, was just as open and they even held contests at Hugh’s bar for flirting. They were an odd couple, that was for sure, but it worked. Ryssa certainly didn’t understand it, especially with her devotion to Jackson, and him to her, but she was happy for her friends. She cleaned up their plates and put away the leftovers in John’s mini-fridge as the two danced.

“Time to go?” Izzy asked, noticing her actions.

“Yeah, don’t want to be late in rejoining the chaos. Thank you, John, for lunch.”

“Anytime!” He stepped away from Izzy to get a wet-wipe to clean off his workspace again. “Burgers next time?”

“Could do, yeah.”

“See you around then. Good luck today, and send Jackson my best.” John didn’t bother sending Hugh wishes, as Hugh was one of his best friends and they saw each other on a very regular basis.

“I will! Have a good afternoon yourself.” They left, and he was alone again. John sighed, sitting back down and pulling his latest gadget toward him. It was’t like he didn’t have work to do, but it was nice to have company now and then.


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