Seeing Love Dogs
We hit the street a few minutes later, the chill of the night instantly making its way straight through my clothes and over my skin. I shivered and huddled closer to Heero, who didnít seem to be feeling the cold as much as I was, my guess was that leather actually kept you warm, unlike what I was wearing.
Pan walked ahead of us, looking eager to get to the club and see his long lost love again. Every now and then, he would even skip in his steps, his excitement showing palpably.
We didnít speak much on our way to the club; I suppose all conversation had been stalled, nervousness, excitement, and anticipation stringing us all up in high spirits for the evening. I held Heeroís hand, tugging him along beside me, glancing up at his face occasionally, wondering what he was thinking.
It bothered me that I couldnít tell him how much I loved him; it was like some odd spell had been cast upon my lips, sealing them against vows of affection and devotion. Then again, perhaps I was just afraid of the future, afraid of what I could or couldnít have, afraid of what I could lose.
The club wasnít too hard to miss, if you had excellent night vision that is. The lettering of the small sign over the stairwell read "Erato" in black on black. Though there was a statue next to the entrance at the bottom of the stairs, a statue of a pretty young woman holding a lyre and smiling secretly at all who entered the club.
"Erato." Trowa said, pointing at her as he pushed open the door.
That door opening was the beginning of what was going to turn out to be one of the most fantastic and weird nights of my life. I donít think I wouldíve been any less surprised, even if I had been there before.
The door swung open on to utter blackness, darkness that seemed thick and heavy, cloying almost. With a shrug, Pan walked straight through it, leaving Heero and I standing there for a moment to look at each other.
"You sure you want to do this?" I asked Heero, glancing up and meeting his eyes in the dim stairwell.
"Are you sure you want to?" He asked in turn, lifting my hand up to his face and nuzzling it for a moment.
"Yeah, I think we have to, come on." I smiled, pulling him along behind as I stepped through the midnight doorway, and into the world of Cupid and Eros.
Club Erato was huge. After I stepped through the doorway, I stood in a short hall that led to a light at the end of it, a light so bright that I couldnít make out what was on the other side of it. I could hear the undercurrent of many voices talking and shouting, laughing, singing, moaning. The smell, well, that was the oddest thing, it smelled like... love. You might ask what on earth love smells like, and I had to wonder myself.
Love smells like, something soothing, soft, gentle, coaxing, it was, well, it was love. And as with love, right beneath all those mild compassionate scents laid the center of it all, lust.
We walked together down the short hallway, Pan waiting impatiently in front of the bright light at the end. The floor was ordinary stone, the walls also made of rock, and I felt like I was going into a wartime bunker, except for the steady beat of music through the soles of my feet.
Pan stopped me with a hand on my arm, as I stepped towards the door ready to go in. His eyes had taken on a serious look, mouth set firmly.
"A godís domain reacts oddly on other magical creatures, youíre going to feel a bit strange when you go through this door and get in there. Donít be surprised if you can suddenly read minds." He smiled, and with that, turned and walked through the light.
I raised an eyebrow and looked up at Heero. "Mind reading?"
"Donít worry, you should be able to handle it." The reassuring smile did nothing to calm my racing heart as I gulped and walked through the door, Heeroís hand still firmly held in my own.
The piercing light seemed to filter directly into my mind as I passed through it, beaming into my senses, opening them, or so it seemed. And then I was through and on the other side, the music and voices Iíd heard before so loud as to be a solid wave of sound.
It wasnít the mass of people that shocked me the most, though the writhing crowd of what looked to be over a thousand people, was enough to startle me. What really intrigued and even somewhat frightened me was the size of the place from the inside. It was as big as a football stadium; the ceilings going up so high you couldnít see where they ended. The length and breadth so long it looked to be a mile or so. Lights flashed, bodies moved and breathed, and then it hit me, the minds of all the people.
I felt my knees begin to buckle, the thoughts of the masses drowning out my own thoughts, their voices filling my head with a ceaseless babbling. They were happy, lusty, and waiting for something. I felt Heeroís hand on my arm, helping me remain upright.
His lips pressed against my ear and he whispered over the noise. "Just block them out, if you try to take in all of them youíll go mad."
I nodded, realizing that he was right and I could block all those feelings and thoughts. I noticed that if I concentrated, I could even pick out individuals to listen to.
"Heero, do they know I can hear what theyíre thinking?" I asked him, rising up on my tiptoes to whisper it into his ear. He shook his head no, turning slightly and kissing me before tugging us across the floor and towards where Pan stood.
"What now?" I asked, glancing around at the milling bodies, noticing for the first time that there was stages set up all along the perimeter of the club.
"Now we wait, and try to enjoy ourselves." Pan said, leaning close to me, his lips brushing my ear. "Listen to the minds for a while, you might find them interesting."
I tilted my head, gazing about and zeroing in on a likely looking man standing to one side. He had short dark hair and an equally dark business suit on. Beside him stood another man in a dress, and beside that man, stood a woman in leather. It went on like that person after person, they were all different, everyone one of them an individual. I spotted a girl who looked to be around my age, her foot tapping idly in time to the music, long hair falling to her waist, she was wearing absolutely nothing. I stared at her for a while, and then let my eyes drift again, noting others in similar states of undress.
Finally, I decided to try to pick one to see what they were thinking. A tall stately woman brushed by us, heading towards one of the many dance floors that were littered throughout the club. Her hair was held up in a high bun, her clothes tight and dark, boots spiked with wicked heels.
Opening my mind to her, I found myself immersed in her, knowing her instantly. Her name was Merla Chross, she was German born, raised in America, and she was on vacation, hoping to get laid while visiting Amsterdam. She knew this was the place to go, one of her friends back home having told her about it. I withdrew my mind from hers, feeling strangely empty as her thoughts slid through mine and were gone. It had felt odd to be that close to a stranger.
Idly I picked another one, a fat man that was trying to dance on one of the floors, his belly jiggling as his feet flew out and back. His name was Jack Ilmon, and he was a killer. I reeled back in surprise at the vividness of the blood that washed the dead figures in his mind, shuddering at the evil that this man hid so well. Maybe mind reading wasnít such a good idea, I suddenly felt as if my brain needed a bath.
Heero squeezed my hand, pointing at a man standing near one of the stages staring up at the lights. "You see that one?" He whispered. I nodded, sending my mind out to the man, slipping inside his head.
Paul Hundel, and this one was different from the other minds, because only one thought was going through his head. He was waiting for the show to begin. I frowned, wondering what show he was waiting for, and delved myself further inside his riveted mind. I could see his memories of previous shows, though the figures on the stage were blurred, as if even he wasnít quite sure what heíd seen.
"Weird." I mumbled, picking out another of the people who stood waiting by a different stage. A blond girl, hair cut short, wearing a small black skirt, high heels and a tight t-shirt. She was in love, and her name was Rachael Kildare. I smiled at her thoughts, they were filled with sweet smells and gentle touches, she too remembered previous shows, but once again, the figures on the stage of her memory were blurred and indistinct.
"Heero? How come they donít remember what the dancers look like?" I whispered, tugging his head down to my mouth.
"Ahh, so you noticed that the figures on the stage were dancing? It means that whoever the dancers were, they are gods. Only a god could manage to do what these people recall having seen but yet donít remember clearly."
"Will we remember?"
He turned his head, cobalt eyes meeting mine. "Of course, weíre not human. If these people truly remembered what theyíd seen, they would probably not remain sane for very long."
Just then, the lights flashed three times, and the music ground to an abrupt halt, the sound of over a thousand people instantly shutting their mouths and holding their breath was amazing. The show was about to begin.
A stage all the way at the end of the great room lit up, showing a set of dark velveteen curtains slowing pulling apart. On the stage stood two mirrors, and a set of stairs, it looked almost like a set for a play. Two rooms, one on top of the other, like an apartment building. In the top room, I could clearly see a small bed, a full-length mirror, and a dresser with items lying on top of it. I swung my eyes downwards; noticing the "room" below it looked exactly the same, though the cover on the downstairs bed was a softer tone.
The crowd surged towards the stage, intensely quiet, almost as if theyíd suddenly been hypnotized. I moved to follow them, only to be held back by Heeroís hand on my elbow and Panís hand on my wrist. They both looked at me and then glanced at each other.
Heero smiled down at me, pointing upwards at the giant and currently blank television screens that lined half of the room. I nodded, understanding that we would stay where we were to watch the show.
The huge screens flickered and came to life, showing the stage from several different angles and vantage points. Music suddenly began blaring into the otherwise still room, the beat single and intense. It built, ascending in itís movement into something pulsing and pounding, something that captured the blood with its pattern. It was dance music, a song Iíd even heard before playing on the radio back home.
Suddenly the beat hit a climax, and a piano began to play softly, as the beat unfolded from within it. The lights dimmed slightly and a figure walked into the upstairs room of the stage, moving perfectly in harmony with the music, and then he turned, and I felt my mouth go dry.
He was absolutely beautiful, hair a golden blond, body perfectly marble, slim build. He was clad only in a pair of boxershorts, bare feet tapping to the music as he moved about the room, swinging his hips to the rhythm and for all the world looking like someone getting ready to go out for a night on the town. There was even a radio sitting on his dresser, supposedly the source of the blaring music.
The lyrics to the song began, the boy sliding open a dresser drawer, taking out some clothes. I flicked my eyes from screen to screen along the ceiling, they gave an absolutely crystal view of everything the blond did.
In time with the music he dressed, slipping on a pair of tight pants, a form fitting shirt and a pair of boots. As the music began with its heavy beat again, he danced a little to it, as one would in trying to get worked up for going out to a club. He stood in front of the mirror, running a hand through his hair, leaning close to his reflection, feet moving with the music.
And then a light blinked on in the room below, a girl entering it and looking around before sitting on the bed. She took off her shoes and jacket, reaching into a drawer and pulling out a different set of clothes. Her hair was wheat blond, striking about the middle of her back. From the different camera angles, I could see that she had soft blue eyes and a perfect face. She too turned on her radio; apparently, it was playing the same song.
I felt like I was watching a live video, a very strange live video, which included nudity. The girl was sliding out of her skirt and shirt and slipping into a short blue dress. Sliding on a pair of high heels she stood in front of her mirror, applying lipstick and dancing. It took me a few moments to realize that both dancers were completely synchronized, moving flawlessly together to the music.
My eyes were glued to the stage, the two dancers entrancing in their movement, as if utterly unaware of their audience. Then, I noticed their reflections in the full-length mirrors they each danced in front of. Normally, a reflection will of course reflect the image in front of it, in this case, it did, sort of.
What I was starting to notice, as the beat began picking up, becoming fierce and lusty, was that their reflections, whenever they turned around, would dance without them. Everytime their backs were turned the reflections moved, dancing within their mirror prisons. At first, the dancers were seemingly oblivious to this, dancing around their individual rooms, fixing their hair, checking out their bodies in the mirror, and straightening their clothes. Then it happened, the boy dancing in the top room turned with his back to the mirror, arching his back and swiveling his hips in a sexual invitation.
I watched as a pair of hands slid out of the mirror behind him, not touching, but moving with his body, as if someone stood behind him and danced with him. When he turned, the hands didnít slip back in, and instead a completely separate person stepped out of the mirror. But, it was the same boy, an absolute twin.
I blinked in surprise, that hadnít been a trick mirror, it couldnít be, because even without the cameras, you could see behind the mirror, and tell, it was only a regular full-length mirror, no tricks involved. This was Cupid and Eros then, it must be. But then, whom was the girl dancing below? I turned my eyes back to her, realizing for the first time that she too was now dancing with her real live reflection. Only, her reflection didnít look a thing like her when it stepped out of the mirror.
It looked like a completely different girl, long white blond hair, piercing blue eyes, and the strangest eyebrows Iíd ever seen. She was dressed in the same dress as the girl, except her outfit was pure black.
Once more, the music began to strike its climax, the beat swelling, almost rapturous in its intensity. The boys above, the twins, were dancing erotically with each other, one of them with his leg slung over the otherís hip, grinding together to the beat. Then they swung around the upstairs room, moving beautifully, a perfect fit, a perfect match. No wonder Pan was in love with the two of them.
It was at this point the beds came into play; the twins upstairs running hands over each otherís bodies, lithe limbs and shining hair catching the eye. The way they were moving wasnít just a sexual imitation, it was sex concentrated. Watching them, I felt like they should be diluted somehow, the effect of their movements and beauty too much, piercing, intense, as if, were I to focus, I would be able to feel their skin against my own.
They swayed towards the bed, one boy backing the other against it, slowly pushing him down to the beat of the music, a lazy caress, a kiss and a slide. I swore I could hear the slip of cloth being pushed off a shoulder, the sexual heat of a mouth slithering over skin. The beat of the music was swelling once more, picking up and ascending towards a crescendo. One of the blond boys was spread legged and half collapsed on the bed, his shirt off and thrown on the floor, hands reaching for his partner.
Then, the mirror image flickered as the music roared towards an ending, his body becoming transparent and solidifying in waves. With a longing look at the boy on the bed, the reflection stood, stepping swiftly back towards the mirror and melting into it.
I glanced below at the two girls and discovered them in much the same situation, the girl in blue lying on the bed, looking dazedly on as the girl in black walked towards her mirror, hips rolling as she stepped into it. The music shimmered and both of the images turned just as both figures on the beds sat up and stared at them.
The beat froze for a moment as they all exchanged looks, and then the two on the beds were up, slowly walking to the mirrors, hands moving towards their reflections in perfect synchronicity. The blare of the music once more became a soft piano; trickling notes and the shuddering slide of a synthesizer beginning to swell into existence behind the piano music.
Just when I thought the song would end, the hands that each of the players had been bringing up to touch their reflections were grabbed, and both were pulled inside the mirrors. Their images tugging them close and whirling them further back, away from the rooms that stood on the other side and farther within the mirrors.
A flashing beat flared up, and clothes began flying out of the mirror, amazingly folding themselves in midair and sliding back into the drawers, shoes slipping beneath the beds. The lights dimmed, and as the music ended, the figures within the mirrors could just be seen, wrapped around one another in blissfully sensual poses. Then the lights blinked out, and the room exploded into a roar of applause, shouting, and whistling.
I sat for a few moments with my mouth hanging open; Iíd never in my entire life seen a show as fantastic. The movements, the dancing, even the music, it had all been perfectly timed, no mistakes, no errors, just absolute and perfect dancing.
I turned, glancing over at Heero, and felt my mouth drop open even more at the look of him. He was so pale as to be white, all blood having been drained from his face. His eyes still glued to the stage, mouth moving silently.
"Heero? Whatís the matter?" I asked, moving towards him, looking up into his face and patting his cheek. His eyes seemed to focus from a far off place, finally noticing me and giving me a blank and horrified look. "What is it? Whatís wrong?" Iíd never seen him like this, and for one of the few times since Iíd met him, I realized Heero was afraid.
"The dancers down below," He gasped, his hand coming to my face, eyes intense. "That was Aphrodite and Venus."
His eyes widened slightly as he glanced up at something directly behind me, I felt someone tap my shoulder, and turning, I came face to face with the goddess of love.