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Cuban Fury

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“Isn’t it bad luck to see him before the big event?”

 

“Porthos, it’s a dance competition, not a wedding. And even if it was a wedding, D’Artagnan would be marrying Athos, not us.”

 

“Fair point.”

 

With a sigh, Porthos followed Aramis into the changing rooms, wondering if they would live to see D’Artagnan’s and Athos’ wedding day. At this point, it seemed highly unlikely. Those two would sooner enter a salsa competition than admit their feelings for each other. Like, literally.

 

“It’s for a good cause!” D’Artagnan explained when one foggy evening Porthos and Aramis returned home to find their friends entangled in a hopeless attempt at practicing salsa moves. “This December Louis is hosting a charity gala to support Room to Read.”

 

“And you’ll be a clown trick or what?”

 

“You may laugh now, but in two months you’ll be awed by our dance moves.”

 

Now Porthos felt awed indeed— by D’Artagnan’s looks at least; his moves were yet to be seen.

 

“My friend, you look surprisingly good in a dress.”

 

“Good?” Aramis exclaimed. “He’s a handsome little devil! Wait till Athos sees you, he won’t be able to—”

 

“He’s seen me already. Multiple times, in fact,” D’Artagnan said, rolling his eyes. “The whole costume was his idea.”

 

“Ah, he’s always had a touch for the arts.”

 

D’Artagnan was wearing a long, tightly fitted dress covered in turquoise sequins, and Porthos mentally congratulated the seamstress. Sewing those on must have taken many hours and even more pinpricks, but in his opinion, the result was worth the effort. Even though they had their doubts in the beginning, Porthos had to admit that his friend had never looked so fabulous.

 

“I thought that picking Dónde Estás Yolanda? as our dance music was your most questionable decision, but this?” D’Artagnan held up Athos’ costume design pinched between his thumb and forefinger. “Turquoise sequins? Seriously?”

 

Porthos snorted. “Would you prefer Swarovski rhinestones?”

 

“Trust me, baby face,” was Athos’ only reply.

 

“Oops, look at the time! We should take our seats. Good luck!”

 

Aramis pinched D’Artagnan’s cheek and left the changing room, majestically, like a flagship.

 

“What did he do that for?” D’Artagnan gaped and Porthos could see he was inches away from going after Aramis— probably to end his life with his shiny silver-coloured, high-heeled shoes.

 

“Why, your cute little bottom is covered in sequins. Not enough space for proper pinching.”

 

“Cute little bottom?”

 

“His words, not mine.”

 

The exact phrase Aramis had used, watching his flatmates practice, was ‘If D’Artagnan doesn’t stop flailing with his arms like a medieval Spanish windmill, he’ll end up on his cute little bottom mid-dance.’ , but Porthos knew better than to share every morsel of information.

 

“Anyway, you and Athos, don’t forget to have fun! You know, not triumph but struggle etcetera.”

 

“Thanks, Porthos.”

 

***

 

D’Artagnan and Athos finished in fourth place—not too bad for two guys who had been complete beginners just two months ago. Porthos clapped them on the shoulder, kept Aramis from pinching more cheeks, and offered everyone a glass of wine. If Athos couldn’t take his eyes off D’Artagnan and looked ready to start pinching certain places? Well, the night was still young, and that wasn’t for Porthos to notice.