Follow My Lead
(Disclaimer: I do not own The Loud House or any of the song titles used here. All of them are the property of their respective owners. So…please, don't sue me)
The day started out like any other, in the small town of Royal Woods. The birds were twittering, the sun was shining, Ol' Mr. Grouse was seen shouting at people to stay off his property. Yup, this appeared to be like any other day. But for the town's resident teen rocker, Luna Loud; it was something more.
As all the students stormed out the doors of the High School; Luna was heading off to join her roadie, Chunk and some fellow rockers from school for a jam session. Among these youngins was someone whom Luna held rather dearly to her heart, a young blonde bombshell named Sam Sharp. Before today, they were just a couple of gal pals who loved to rock.
Then, as time passed; Luna began to feel drawn to Sam. From the way she played to the way her voice sounded whenever she sang, Luna felt mesmerized. But despite her ability to play for hundreds; when it came to telling Sam how she felt, Luna would almost always choke.
Then came the day where the Loud House found a mysterious love letter addressed to "L. Loud." This brought each of the siblings to wonder and speculate who the letter was for and who sent it. After some…surprisingly expert love advice from Lucy, the family's resident Goth; it was then decided that everyone should go out to send tokens to each of their crushes.
More than anything, Luna wanted to use this moment to share her innermost feelings with Sam. But every time she tried, whether it was sending a signal after the first note or leaving her favorite pick as a token of love after the second; she'd always get cold feet. At the end of the day, Luna learned that the note wasn't actually meant for her.
Rather…it was written by her mother, Rita; who hoped it would catch her husband, Lynn's attention. This was a ritual they had done, since back in the day; when they were simply a pair of love struck teens. But in spite of it all, the whole escapade inspired each of the Loud Siblings to do the same thing; especially Luna.
The moment saw Sam smiling at the letter she left in her locker, Luna's heart swelled with hope. Since then, the two of them were quite close; always rockin' together or just having some old fashioned fun. But no matter how simple things were between them, Luna treasured the time they've spent together.
Then came the day of the Astonishing Quest Scavenger Hunt, a day that Luna thought was gonna be perfect. Before that point; she'd spent hours at home, primping and prepping herself for what she hoped would be the best day ever. But once the contest began, both girls discovered a shocking truth.
Despite both of them having a strong love of anything music related, they had nothing else in common. They tried to go about the contest like normal. But each challenge proved to be a passion for one and a weakness to the other.
This all caused Luna to heavily doubt both her feelings for Sam and their possible future together. That was when her older sister, Lori assured Luna that all new couples face this hurtle; even her and Bobby. "Just be open to the stuff Sam's into" Lori stated, "you might actually enjoy it."
With these words in mind, Luna went back to Sam with renewed hope. As the contest slowly reached its end, all teams had one challenge left; to bake an apple pie. "Ooh! Bakin's not really my thing" both said in unison, which seemed to take both ladies by surprise.
True enough; by the end of the challenge, both ladies ended up with more than just egg on their faces…but they didn't care. They just laughed and hugged one another like nothing else mattered. In the end, they lost the contest but what they won was something of much greater value; a better understanding of each other.
From that day on, they promised to be more open to what they liked and disliked. Despite everything, however; there was one thing Luna and Sam shared a mutual love for…each other. As Luna's mind slowly drifted off to Dreamland, a sudden loud honking sound caused her to nearly leap out her skin.
Upon recovering from the shock, Luna could hear sounds of laughter from nearby. She looked up and saw Chunk and her band mates/schoolmates in his bus, chuckling at her like mad hyenas. "Boy, oh boy" cried a young girl named Ruth, "we got you good with that one, Lunes!
Feeling mildly bothered, Luna shot them all a firm glare for laughing at her expense. Once everyone had calmed down, Sam exited the bus and gave Luna a big hug. "Don't pout like that, luv" she murmured in a cockney accent, "your face is too pretty to be wrinkled up by frownin'."
That sweet comment was just enough to get Luna's mood to lift. After sharing a quick kiss on the cheek with Sam, she collected her guitar and got in to the bus. Later that night, Luna called up her folks and informed them they would be practicing late.
Now, knowing his daughter as well as he did; Lynn Sr. knew that a late night session usually meant staying overnight. "If that's the case, sweetie; you best have Chunk come over to get your sleeping bag and toothbrush" he stated, "and make sure you call us in the morning, before heading home." Luna agreed to her father's terms, bade him goodnight and hung up the phone.
"Guess you dudes are stuck with me for the night" Luna said with a coy smile, to which her band mates softly cheered. At that moment; Sam's Mom, Mrs. Sharp overheard their conversation and popped her head in. "You're staying overnight with us, Luna; that's wonderful" she chimed gleefully, "I'll set up an extra chair at the table for you."
Luna gave her a soft chuckle, proclaiming that she'd be fine eating at the coffee table. "Nonsense, dear" Mrs. Sharp insisted, "you're Sam's special girl and you deserve to eat beside her." Luna blushed shyly at the comment and, after one final attempt to refuse, agreed to sit with them. When Luna learned that Sam told her family about them, she feared the worst.
She wondered if they'd freak out and treat her like she was ill or if she'd welcome their love with open arms. Much to Luna's surprise and Sam's relief, the latter result happened. Sam's folks not only fully supported their love. But her little brother, Simon was bouncing with joy; proclaiming he now had two cool girls to hang with.
Since then, the Sharps always looked forward to Luna's visits. Whether it was her and the band practicing for the afternoon or Luna just wanting to spend time with their daughter, their door was always open. The only condition they had however, was that they'd all make sure to have their schoolwork done first; before practicing.
Mr. Sharp also added that the band at least, try not to disturb the neighborhood with their music or blow out the power with their equipment. Thankfully; every time they practiced, there was not a single blackout. One night, after playing for a solid hour; the group decided to take a much needed rest and watch some TV.
Upon turning it on, the channel that appeared caused Luna's eyes to widen.
TV Announcer: You're watching "The Black and White Period Piece Old Lady Boring Movie Channel" Upon hearing the words "black and white" and "period piece," Luna felt a chill run up her spine. Sam quickly took notice of her boo's behavior and rested a hand upon her shoulder. "You okay, Purple Pixie" she asked with loving concern, "you look like you've seen a ghost."
Luna quickly realized how she was reacting and shook the cobwebs from her head. "No worries, Samurai…I'm all good" she assured, "just might be…a little cold right now." Somehow, the fib had fooled Sam and she reached behind the couch to collect a large blanket.
After tucking themselves beneath the blanket, Sam snuggled close to Luna and kissed her cheek. "Now, we can snuggle together while we watch the movie." Luna couldn't help but blush at the idea. Truthfully, she'd look for any excuse to get this close to Sam.
All of a sudden, their moment was briefly disturbed by the faint sounds of playful gagging. Everyone looked over to see Simon, standing at the living room doorway in his pajamas. "If you guys are gonna act mushy, why not do it in your room" he giggled, while sticking his tongue out.
Like any older sister would, she mildly glowered at her baby brother and prepared to toss a pillow at him. But Simon had already sped off to his room, before she could reach for one. With a disgruntled huff, she crossed her arms and snuggled back against Luna.
"It's like I told ya, Lunes; one sibling can be just as much of a bother as ten" she groaned with a soft smile. Luna shared a soft laugh in reply and turned her attention back towards the screen. In moments, the channel's move was about to begin.
TV Announcer: "Stay tuned for the Friday Night Movie, "The Duchess Approves", starring Sturly Stempleburgess as 'The Duchess', and Grampton St. Rumpterfrabble as irascible coxswain Saunterblugget Hampterfuppinshire."
While Luna did her best to hide the mild dread of the movie to come; her fellow bandmate, George appeared on the verge of panicking. "C'mon, girls; change the channel" he cried dramatically, "it's too early for us to be put to sleep already!" Upon hearing this, Ruth softly scoffed at George and rolled her eyes beneath her bangs.
"What do you two gals think" she asked, facing Luna and Sam's direction; "you wanna change the station or give this a try?" In the time Luna and Sam had been together, the former learned that Sam had a deep love for romantic stories. Now, while she and her family indulged in viewings of The Dreamboat; Luna was never drawn to that sort of stuff before.
But as she promised Sam, after their scavenger hunt adventure; she agreed to give almost everything she enjoyed a try (at least, once.) So; in the end, Luna wrapped an arm around Sam's shoulders and decided to give the movie a shot. "This probably won't be…too bad, right" she thought to herself, "I mean…it's set in England, my home away from home; that's a plus in my book."
An hour passed since the movie began and surprisingly, the channel remained unchanged. Even more so was the fact that the four teens were now heavily invested in the film, surrounded by tissue boxes and discarded tissue wads all over the floor. As the movie progressed; George, with tears in his eyes, reached for a tub of ice cream and placed it in-between the four of them.
Actress' voice from the TV: I don't care about dukes or commoners or his royal highness, Lionel of Cornwall. I'm not afraid anymore, Mother!
Older Actress' Voice: Duchess, I forbid you!
Duchess' Voice: I may be a Duchess but…I'm also a woman!
This scene caused the four teens to either cry aloud with joy, shout at the screen, cheer or a collection of all three. "YES! YES! In your face, Elizabeth" exclaimed Luna, tears of joy streaming down her cheeks. Sam took notice of this and offered her a tissue.
"Thanks, sweets" sniffled Luna with a hearty chuckle, "I've never seen a movie that made me cry this much before." Sam nodded in agreement; in her heart, a small part of her knew Luna would enjoy the movie. But the moment she thought this, she began to wish they had even more in common.
At that moment, Sam's train of thought was suddenly disturbed by George's wild crying. The girls looked at him in mild annoyance, asking their friend to calm himself down. "I'm…I-I'm sorry, girls" George stuttered, "this movie just gets me, ya know…it's just like my life!"
The girls all collectively stared at him in bewilderment, wondering if he'd gone mad. George suddenly realized his outburst and slowly calmed down. "I mean…in some small way, it's just like my life" he chuckled, "just…pass the popcorn down here."
The ladies chuckled softly at George's words and happily complied with his request. Another hour had passed by and the movie was nearing ever closer to its climax, which the teens were on pins and needles waiting for. "Oh, my gosh! The wedding scene's coming up" Sam exclaimed while wriggling giddily beneath the blanket.
Luna smiled warmly at her and took interlocked Sam's hand with her own. "Dude, I've waited almost forever for this" she thought to herself, "something tells me this is gonna end on a big note." The remaining two teens were as equally engaged as the ladies were.
There were moments where George, in particular felt captivated by the Duchess' wedding dress. As the wedding ceremony continued on the TV, the doors of the church suddenly burst open; causing the cast on screen to gasp. As the intruder entered, George's blood began to boil.
George: Count Lionel?! What's he doin' here?!
Lionel's voice on the TV: I've come to collect my bride!
Luna: YOU HAD YOUR CHANCE AT THE COTILLION, YOU…
Groom's voice on the TV: You had your chance at the Cotillion, you…
Luna: THAT'S WHAT I'M SAYIN', DUDE!
This turn of events in the film filled Luna with such rage, she came close to chucking the popcorn bowl at the TV screen. Then, all of a sudden; the movie had suddenly cut into a commercial break; which made the four teens grumble with irritation. "You have got to be kidding me here" whined Ruth, "they wait until now to play ads, I thought only the internet did that!"
As the commercial break began, the screen suddenly flashed with a rainbow of colors. A moment later, the colors soon gave way to a 70's style star wipe symbol. Soon; the imagery began to change its style through the 80's, 90's and finally, the present.
The last thing to appear on the screen was the words "Loco Legs" in flashing neon colors. This made everyone scratch their heads in confusion. As the logo faded away; a handsome, lean-bodied Latino man appeared on the screen with a dancing mob behind him.
"Buenas Noches, mis amigos" he said in greeting with a suave accent, "I am Sebastian of 'Sebastian's School of Saucy Samba' and I am here to invite you for Royal Woods' 33rd Annual 'Loco Legs' Dance Contest." Intrigued, the four teenagers listened intently to the ad; wondering what was to come. Suddenly, Mrs. Sharp popped in and she appeared to be glowing with joy.
"Is it really that time of year again" she beamed, "goodness, I can't wait!" Luna tilted her head in confusion and asked what the deal was. Upon hearing the question, Mrs. Sharp quickly calmed down and smoothed out her clothes with a shy cough.
"Sorry about that, dear" she stated, "it's just…eee! I have fond memories about the contest is all." Sam went on to explain how her parents shared their first date during the contest, when they were her age. "Sounds like a rockin' time for all" Luna said with an eager smile, "what's this contest about?"
In response, Sam playfully flicked Luna on the nose and urged her to listen to the ad. While rubbing her nose with a grin, Luna snuggled back into position; as Sebastian continued to speak. "Loco Legs is a dance contest that tests every contestant's endurance levels, skill, style, grace and ability to react to split-second song changes" he explained.
As Sebastian went on, the screen began to show off images of the contest itself. While Luna and the others appeared intrigued by it all, Sam was beginning to feel rather…uneasy. "During the contest, all participants must dance as long and as best as they can" Sebastian explained, "whoever tires out is disqualified."
The ad then began to show several solo and couple dancers either passing out or trudging tiredly out of the dance floor. "Heh! This doesn't all seem that hard" chuckled George, "I could dance circles around these guys." Upon saying this, Sebastian added a catch that took everyone off-guard.
"As the contest progresses; the music can and will change styles, every now and then" he said with a wink, "so…be sure to keep on your toes." Sam let out a nervous gulp and asked what this stipulation meant. "It's as the man said, honey" Mrs. Sharp chimed in suddenly, "one moment, the song could be something out of the 80's; the next…it could go into a slow dance."
This revelation didn't quite put Sam's troubles at ease, unfortunately. The rest of the gang didn't quite feel so concerned, however. "Wonder what's in it for the last dancer standing" inquired Luna with a wry smile, to which Mr. Sharp answered that the prize differed; over the years.
"When the Missus and I competed, there was a trophy and a spot on a Wall of Fame on the line" he stated. Luna couldn't help but chuckle at nature of the prize. Somehow; she imagined her sister, Lynn would be itching to join the contest as well. Though...she'd probably be in it more for the trophy and picture than for the dancing.
"Get ready to dance until you are ill, amigos" challenged Sebastian, "because the winner of this years contest gets the coveted Loco Legs trophy, a spot on our Wall of Fame…and a $100,000 cash prize!" At the mention of the hundred grand, Luna had almost choked on her soda. After catching her breath, seconds later; she and her friends began to chat excitedly about the cash prize.
"Do you guys realize what we could do with that much cash" Ruth squeed excitedly, "we could get scholarships for college and buy our own recording studio!" Both she and Luna giggled excitedly at the idea, while George was thinking about all the girls he'd get to meet at the contest. Meanwhile, Sam appeared rather silent through the jubilation.
On the surface; she had a skittish, rather uneasy grin on her face. But on the inside, she was caught up in a roaring storm of anxiety. Her heart was pounding, her breathing was soft yet shallow, the pupils of her eyes seemed to have shrunken to the size of pencil dots and her head felt as though it would burst from the worried thoughts in her brain.
For the moment, the only sounds she could hear were those of her heart beating madly. It was as if everything else faded into nothing, the moment her panic attack began. Suddenly, something touched her shoulder and caused Sam to nearly jump out her skin.
Upon collecting herself, she could see Luna staring at her with a confused expression. "You okay there, Sammy" she asked with some concern, "you're lookin' a little jumpy there." After taking in a quick yet calming breath, Sam smiled warmly at her girlfriend and hugged her.
"It's all good, Lunes" she chuckled reassuringly, "I'm just feeling a little...tired is all." Sam's fib appeared to have worked, as her friends all seemed to let out simultaneous yawns in agreement. "Let's finish the movie, first; then, we'll hit the hay" suggested George, to which the ladies happily agreed.
Sometime later, the four teens were found sleeping soundly either in certain rooms of the house or in the living room. Before that; Sam offered for Luna to stay in her room, while she slept on the sofa. "C'mon, Samurai; don't leave me alone" Luna begged adorably, "me wanna stay with you."
Sam couldn't help but roll her eyes slightly; since they've started dating, Luna (though she'd never openly admit it) had moments where she would behave like her eldest sister (just a tad bit.) As much as she wanted for the two of them to sleep in the same room together; Sam, unfortunately had to refuse. "Sorry, my purple pixie" she stated, petting Luna on the cheek "but the folks say we can't share a room together until after we're married."
Hearing Sam make the implication of them getting married caused Luna to blush so deeply, the red on her face almost overpowered the color of her eye shadow. After a moment of shy silence, Luna agreed to her girlfriend's terms and headed off for Sam's room; carrying her sleeping clothes in with her. Before she could get too far; Sam quickly snatched her from behind, turned Luna around and gave her a quick yet deep kiss.
Upon breaking apart, the two stared dreamily into each others eyes while smiling. "Enjoy my bed, sweet stuff" murmured Sam sweetly, "I love you, Purple Pixie." Luna gave a sigh and kissed the palm of Sam's hand. "But I love you more, my blonde bombshell" she chuckled with a "bedroom eyes" expression.
After the pair shared five more "I love you" statements, their friends gently brought them apart while chuckling softly. As Simon saw Luna being brought to the bedroom, he let out a soft raspberry of disgust. "Mommy, Daddy; will I be as weird as that, when I get a girlfriend" he asked, to which both parents simply replied with "let's wait until you're older to talk about that, Son."
Once everyone had been properly situated, all appeared quiet. The only sounds that could be heard were those of tired yet soft snoring all around the house. Then; at the hour of 2 AM, Sam began to stir violently beneath her covers.
Finally, with a dejected and tired sigh; Sam pushed herself up from the sofa and made her way to the kitchen for a drink. As she approached the room, however; Sam could hear soft sounds of rummaging from inside. Nervous, she plucked Simon's Wiffle Ball bat from off the floor and tiptoed towards the kitchen.
With a soft yet fierce battle cry; Sam jumped through the doorway, ready to take on the intruder inside. Then, a familiar voice suddenly reached her ears. "So sorry, mum" it cried in fear, "I swear, I'll pay ya back for it all!"
Confused, Sam reached for a nearby light switch for the stove light and flicked it on. Soon after, Sam saw that the "intruder" was actually Chunk; who appeared to be holding an armful of fridge contents. "Chunk...wow, you spooked me a little" she heaved with relief, "I thought you were a burglar, I was almost ready to bop you."
Chunk gave her a knowing smile and gestured at her bat, indicating that he was fully aware of her intentions. Upon lowering her guard, Sam asked what he was doing awake at such an hour. "I got a lil' case of the munchies, while I was sleepin'" he stated, "thought I'd make meself a sandwich."
Realizing that there was no real danger, Sam placed the bat back where she found it. "What about you, luv" Chunk asked from behind her, "why are you up and at 'em at this hour?" With a nervous chuckle, Sam confessed that she felt rather thirsty and wanted a drink of water.
With that; she hurried over towards the sink, filled up a glass, downed it in several seconds and proceeded back to bed. But before she could reach the doorway, she felt Chunk's meaty yet gentle hand on her shoulder. "Seems like there's more on your mind than just thirst, luv" he stated, "you wanna talk about it?"
Sam suddenly felt a nervous chill run up her spine, upon being asked such a request. "N-no...there's nothing wrong, really" she stammered softly, "I'm just feeling tired and want to get as much sleep as I..." There came a sudden murmur of "tut-tut-tut" and Sam could see Chunk shaking his head slightly at her.
"I think I know what's goin' on here" he suggested, "I've seen a similar look on my Luna's face, when she was in 6th Grade." Sam, raising a confused eyebrow at the man, asked Chunk what he was trying to say. "Before I can tell ya this story, I gotta show ya somethin' first" he whispered, while rummaging through his vest.
Sam was about to ask what he was searching for, until Chunk let out a triumphant cheer and withdrew a small photograph from his vest pocket. In it was a young yet somewhat familiar young girl. She had long hair that went down to her shoulders, a girlish light purple shirt, white earrings, black Mary Jane shoes and white socks worn high.
The moment she saw the girl's square-patterned skirt, Sam let out a gasp. "Is...Is that...Luna" she cried with surprise, to which Chunk answered with a simple smile and nod. "This was a year before she became the sweet girl you know her now" he chuckled, "before that, she was a rather quiet and gentle lass."
Sam couldn't help but giggle at the description; to her, the idea of Luna being "quiet" seemed darned near impossible. Upon looking at the photo again, she smiled a kitten grin and little hearts fluttered over her head. "Aww! Even back then, Lunes was as cute as a button" she cooed softly, "you've got to get me a copy of this pic."
Chunk wholeheartedly agreed but suddenly realized he was getting a tad off-topic. "Moving along; after she discovered herself and the time came for Luna's first show, you'll never guess what happened" he stated, which made Sam feel rather curious. After darting his eyes side-to-side, he leaned in close so that he could whisper into her ear.
"On the night of her first show...Luna almost backed out" he murmured, "almost choked herself up with worry she did." To say that this revelation surprised Sam would be a tremendous understatement. "Are you serious, Luna almost chickened out" she cried, "but...but she's the raddest chick I know, nothing freaks her out."
Chunk applauded the girl for her supportive nature towards their mutual comrade and fellow rocker. But then, he added that no one is without some anxieties. "Since then, I could sense whenever Luna is gettin' cold feet about anything" he said with pride, "and right now...your feet are colder than the Artic Circle in January."
Sam was prepared to make some form of retort but the shaking in her knees stopped her from trying. Defeated, she plunked herself onto a chair and sighed. "Come, come luv; tell ol' Chunk what's wrong" he urged softly, tilting up Sam's head from beneath her chin.
At first, Sam felt like continuing with putting up her defensive "walls" and lying to her friend/loyal roadie. But she slowly realized that she'd be lying to herself, instead of the other way around. With a deep sigh and a mildly distressed look on her face, Sam decided to come clean.
Meanwhile in the hallway, the door to Sam's bedroom opened and Luna exited with a yawn. Feeling the slight gurgle of nature's call within her, she headed off for the bathroom. The moment she left, two minutes later; she was about to head back off to sleep.
Then, at that moment; she suddenly heard the sounds of voices coming from the kitchen downstairs. She took a couple of steps down, trying not to get too close, in order to hear the voices more clearly. "Before I tell you anything, you must promise me to never speak a word of what I say to you" one voice ordered softly, "especially not to Luna...if she ever found out, I'd be mortified."
It didn't take long for Luna to realize that the voice belonged to Sam. But who was she talking to, why was Sam talking about her...and what, exactly did Sam think she'd be ashamed of. "No worries, luv" murmured the second voice, "I won't say anything until you want me too."
Luna let out a soft sigh of relief, upon recognizing Chunk's voice. But she still wondered why they were talking to each other so late at night. Curious, she took one more step and put a hand to her ear; with hopes of hearing their conversation more clearly.
After two minutes of silence, Sam finally began to speak. "I'm guessing you know about mine and Luna's 'date' during the Astonishing Quest competition, right?" she asked softly, "and about how much the two of us struggled during the challenges." Chunk nodded slightly, informing Sam on how Luna told him everything; even the parts where she doubted their relationship.
Sam clutched a hand to her chest, as if feeling her heart being crushed. As much as the memory of their flub ups during the contest bothered her. It was the implication Luna made about finishing the remainder of it as "friends" that almost shattered her spirit.
"I really tried to show my stuff at the challenges Lunes was good at" she admitted, "but I just ended up screwing things up royally for us both." Chunk nodded in understanding, remembering when Luna told him how some of the stuff they did wasn't quite her "thing." "As I recall, though" he murmured, "you both shared one thing in common...you both lacked baking skills."
Sam couldn't help but laugh at the mention of the baking challenge. At the same time; on the steps, Luna also shared a muffled giggle of her own. Despite losing the challenge and getting dirty in the process, they both had a good laugh and hug over it.
Luna couldn't help but brush her hand against her cheek slightly. For it was the same one Sam nuzzled all the flour off her face on. That moment of physical contact felt blissful, to her.
At that moment, Luna's train of thought was disturbed by her friends suddenly restarting their conversation. "After that, we both agreed that we aren't as perfect as we thought" Sam said with a sigh, "but we promised to be open to what each of us likes, from then on." Chunk chuckled softly at the revelation; referencing their little movie night moment, just hours ago.
"This is all well and good, luv" he stated, "but somethin' tells me there's more to this than you're letting on." Sam's eyes widened slightly in shock, realizing she couldn't hide much from her friend for long. With a heavy heart; she, at last came right to the point. "It's about one of the challenges we did" she blurted out sullenly, "the one at the dance hall, downtown."
On the steps, Luna gasped softly in surprise; remembering how much she excelled in copying the instructor's moves...and how poorly Sam tried to do the same. "As I recall, luv" Chunk's voice spoke up suddenly, "you told Luna that dancin' wasn't quite your 'thing?'" Sam let out a dejected sigh and then added how much she wished it could be her thing.
"Hanging out and playing music with Luna is wonderful" she stated, "but dancing together would be more awesome than an eternity of private SMOOCH concerts!" From the way she spoke, Chunk could sense the true sincerity in Sam's words on the topic of dancing. "If that's what you really feel; then, why not dot it" he asked, "Luna would be overjoyed to have you as any kind of partner, dancing or otherwise."
At that moment, both Chunk and Luna suddenly heard Sam sniffling; followed by the sounds of choked sobs. "I wish I could, I really do" she whimpered, "but it's not as easy as you think." Chunk could see that the girl was, obviously distressed and thought about ending the conversation there. But Sam refused and insisted on getting the issue off her chest right away.
"The truth is...I really wanted to dance with Luna, that day...but I can't" she said while swiping her arm across her eyes. Chunk raised a curious eyebrow and asked what she meant by "she can't." As much as Sam tried to answer directly, the most she could let out was a soft muttering of whispers.
Chunk tried two other attempts to get a clearer answer from the girl. But both ended up the same way, with Sam muttering the same unintelligible whispers. After one final attempt; Sam, with her fists clenched tight and sorrow blazing in her eyes, finally blurted out the truth in one single outburst.
"I CAN'T DANCE, ALRIGHT" she roared loudly, "I'VE TRIED AND I'VE TRIED, FOR YEARS BUT...BUT NO MATTER HOW HARD I WORK AT IT, I ALWAYS TRIP OVER MYSELF!" Upon realizing how loud she was shouting, Sam clamped her hands over her mouth and mentally prayed that no one heard her. Thankfully, the only other sounds heard were those of her family and friends snoring in bed.
But unknown to Sam, Luna heard every part of her outburst from the stairway; her face frozen with shock. After taking a moment to calm down, the young blonde rocker continued her story. "Ever since I discovered my musical talents, I've wanted to dance as well as play" she explained, "but every attempt ended the same way."
Using her hands, she began to do a finger puppet demonstration of herself dancing and consistently tripping up multiple times. "One time, while dancing; I tripped over my left foot and fell into the dirty laundry basket" she said with a grimace, "I smelled like my dad's work clothes for three days straight, after that!" Chunk let out a soft chuckle but did his best to hide it, upon seeing Sam's bothered expression.
After that, all was silent for what felt like ages. Then, Sam let out another sniffle and wiped a few stray tears away. "So...now, you know my secret" she sighed, "go ahead and laugh at me like anyone else would." Chunk felt utterly shocked by such a suggestion, proclaiming he'd never laugh at someone's expense. "But everyone else has" Sam blurted out, "my brother, some of my relatives, my neighbors even my parents (at one time!)
"Well...I ain't like those lot, Mum" Chunk assured, "besides, not bein' able to dance is something many people deal with." Sam's shoulders slumped sadly and her head hung low with shame. "True...but everybody else I know knows how to do it" she whined softly, "my friends, my teachers, my parents...even my little brother dances better than me."
A faint blush of shame began to coat the girl's tear-stained cheeks. "It's the biggest shame I've ever had to hide" Sam murmured, "and if Luna were to ever find out, who knows what she'd think of me then!" Upon hearing his, a severely disappointed expression formed on Chunk's face.
"Don't be spoutin' nonsense like that, luv" he murmured, "Luna loves you more than anything and she would never let somethin' like not bein' able to dance change that." At that moment, the soft pitter patter of footsteps could be heard from nearby. With a fright, both Sam and Chunk turned to see who was approaching.
To their relief, it was only Luna standing at the doorway and she had a sleepy yet concerned look on her face. Sam, worried that she may have been caught, tried her best to act casual. "Luna, sweetheart...uh, what a surprise" she whispered while smiling nervously, "I was just uh...chatting with Chunk about a dream I had."
Alas, Sam's attempts to fool her boo were fruitless; upon seeing the "don't you try to fool me" look on Luna's face. "No disrespect meant, Samurai" she began, "but there's no point in lyin' to me...I heard everything." To say that Luna's revelation terrified Sam would be a gross understatement.
Soon; she felt the color drain from her face, her knees started quaking and her breathing became slightly shallow. Then; much to her surprise, she felt Luna's arms wrap tightly around her in a big hug. When she finally calmed down, Sam gave Luna a confused stare.
"You...You're not ashamed of me, Lunes" she asked timidly, which made Luna feel rather offended. "Ashamed, why the "H" would I ever be ashamed of you" the purple-clad rocker exclaimed, "so you can't dance, it's no big whoop to me." This caused Sam to push herself out of Luna's arms and stare firmly into her eyes.
"It is a big deal to me, Lunes" she insisted, "your music fills me with such energy that I want nothing more than to boogie like there's no tomorrow with you!" In an instant, her mood softened and all the fire in her eyes seemed almost extinguished. "I just...I don't know how to dance the right way" she confessed, "anytime I try, I just...screw up."
Upon seeing the look on Sam's face, Luna knew just what to do and say. She placed both hands upon her cheeks, gently lifted her head up and brushed away a tear with her right thumb. With a soft smile and a loving kiss on Sam's cheek, Luna whispered "'Don't pout like that, luv...your face is too pretty to be wrinkled up by frownin'.'"
Sam sniffled softly through her nose and mildly chuckled at Luna's words. "I...I should sue you for copying my lines, missy" she murmured softly, which Luna countered with a swift kiss on her lips. "I'm only copyin' because it's true" she stated, "I don't ever wanna see my girl think so little of herself."
Though touched by her girlfriend's supportive nature and kind words, Sam still felt racked by shame. "I just...I really wish things were different" she murmured, "I wanna help us win that contest...but how can that happen, if I can't dance?" It didn't take long for someone, namely Chunk, to propose a solution.
"Here's an idea, luv" he offered, "how's about you come take some dancin' lessons from me and Luna, every weekend until the day of the contest." Luna nodded her head enthusiastically at the idea, while Sam appeared to be undecided. "No, guys; I don't want to be a bother" she insisted, "besides, Lunes could always find another dance partner...like George."
Almost instantly, Luna shot down the idea; revealing that George and Ruth were already slated to be partners. Before Sam could offer up another alternative choice, Luna silenced her with a truly passionate kiss. Upon breaking away, the two ladies stared at one another with a penetrating bedroom eyes expression.
"No dice, Samurai" Luna whispered huskily into Sam's ear, "there is no other partner I want than you, in dancing or in life." Hearing this line caused Sam to playfully shove her girl against her shoulder. "Holy crud, Lunes" she giggled madly, "that has to be the corniest line you've said to me yet!"
Luna only rolled her eyes playfully at her; teasing Sam on how, deep down, she loved the cheesy romantic one-liners. After that, both girls agreed to the lessons with a kiss and returned to bed. Before heading back, Sam thanked Chunk for providing a friendly ear for her.
"Twas no problem at all, luv" he said with a smile, "me and Luna are always here, if you need us." With all that said, Chunk finished making the remainder of his sandwich and the girls tiptoed back to bed; making certain not to disturb the rest of the house. School days came and went and the weekend had, at long last arrived.
The doors burst open and kids came roaring out of the school, happy for their two days of freedom. Sam, meanwhile was seen calmly yet casually leaving the campus. Though she too, was happy for the weekend; she worried about what to expect next. Within moments, she spotted Chunk's van (with the girl in question already aboard) and hurried inside.
As they left the school grounds, Luna and Sam wondered where they would be practicing at. "I know it won't be at my place" Luna stated, "not only would it be far too crowded to practice...but my sister, Lynn would probably try and take things a liiittle too far." Sam chuckled in agreement, upon remembering how she'd seen such over-competitiveness up close.
Chunk gave the ladies a thumbs up, assuring him that he knew the perfect place to do their lessons. After a half hour's drive; the trio soon came upon a large, old and empty warehouse. Sam looked at the roadie and asked why he brought them there. "I thought you'd be taking us to a studio or the dance hall" she stated, which made Luna nod in agreement.
"For a contest as big as 'Loco Legs,' nearly every one of those places will be too heavily booked for just the three of us to practice" he explained while opening the doors. "As for why bring you here; it's private, spacious and far from any kind of distractions." Sam still felt unsure about the idea; then, Luna reminded her how this would feel like the famed scene from Footloose.
Upon entering the warehouse; the girls saw that it was, indeed as Chunk described...very spacious. "This joint used to belong to a friend of me dad's, years ago" he explained, "he gave it to him after his ol' company closed up shop; thinkin' me dad or someone in the family could make use outta this place." The girls nodded in understanding, all while looking about the large space around them.
"Cool" muttered Sam in awe, causing her voice to reverberate off the walls. Upon hearing how far and loudly her echo went, she said the word "cool" again...but much louder. "Dudes, this place has some sick acoustic space" Luna chimed in, "maybe we could rehearse here, after the contest is over."
Chunk and Sam chuckled at the idea, proclaiming they would consider it. "For now, we've got lessons to do" the roadie stated firmly, "we just need one final item for practice." With that, he went outside to his van and proceeded to search for something.
Upon his return, he was seen holding a 90's multi-disc CD player over his head. "You cannot practice dancin' without music, right" he said with a laugh, causing the ladies to giggle as well. After that, he pressed a button and the stereo began to play a piece of 70's music.
While the sound of the tune made the girls shudder slightly, Chunk was seen tapping his toes to the rhythm. "Okay, Sam" he began, "let us start out with a few basic steps." After that, he stood up from his chair and proceeded to do a series of Disco dance steps; all while counting out loudly.
"Uh...any particular reason why he's saying numbers like that" inquired Sam confusedly, she then noticed that Luna was doing the same thing. When the purple-clad rocker saw her boo's confused gaze, she smiled and approached her. "This is just to keep track of the rhythm, Sammy" she explained, "every beat equals a step, when you're dancing."
To demonstrate, Luna performed a series of dance steps; all while counting to four in rhythm. But all it seemed to do was make Sam all the more confused. "Dudes, I'm trying to follow here; I really am" she murmured, "but I don't really think I can do what you're doing."
With a soft yet sweet smile, Luna encouraged Sam to give it her best shot. Sam smiled back at Luna and proceeded to copy her moves as best as possible. At first, she seemed to be getting the hang of it. But one minute later, her left leg suddenly bumped into the back of her right; which caused her to stumble.
Thankfully, she fell into Luna's arms and didn't cause them to fall over. "Jeez, Samurai" chuckled Luna playfully, "I thought you already fell for me long ago." With a soft chuckle and a shy blush, Sam pushed herself away from her girlfriend; telling her to "leave the jokes to her sister."
Again and again, for eight consecutive weekends, Sam tried to do the dance steps. But just like before, she almost tripped over her own feet while counting each step. At one point, after falling onto her face; Sam let out a flustered roar and was ready to give up.
That was when Chunk came up with an excellent idea. "Forget what I said earlier about keepin' in step, luv" he stated, "a good way to understand dancing is that it's...a bit like walkin'." Sam blinked in confusion and retorted bitterly in saying that walking couldn't be the same as dancing.
With a knowing look in his eye, Chunk gestured for Sam to take a look at Luna. Upon doing so, she saw Luna strutting along the floor to the music. Occasionally; she added a twirl, a kick or a wiggle of her hips to the beat.
But for the most part, she was doing just as Chunk described; a sort of dance walk. In that moment, Sam felt...on the fence about what was happening. On one hand, she was mesmerized by Luna's moves; especially the "nice wiggle" (as she called it) she added in her strut.
But on the other hand; after so many screw ups, she began to lose faith in herself. "I think I might just call it quits here and now" Sam muttered dejectedly, pushing herself up from the floor. While in the middle of a "Cabbage Patch" dance move, Luna spotted Sam heading for the door.
"Where are ya headin' off to, brah" she asked, "our lessons just got started." Sam huffed bitterly, muttering how her lessons were officially over. This response greatly troubled Luna and she asked if she was hurt or anything. "The only things hurt are my pride, self-respect...and my heart" she whimpered, "no matter how hard I try, I'm still screwing up and failing you."
Chunk overheard their conversation and asked what brought her to give up. "You looked like you were showin' some progress earlier" he stated, "what changed?" With a deep sigh, Sam revealed that it was seeing Luna dancing that brought her to doubt herself.
"I mean...she dances so well and, I guess...I started to feel self-conscious" she admitted, "I dunno if I can be that good." Chunk smiled softly, patted Sam on the shoulder and told her that dancing isn't just about following what others are doing. "True dancing is about finding your own unique style" he added, "it kinda works the same with music."
While the explanation made the idea mildly easier for her to understand, Sam's spirits still felt low. "I dunno" she murmured, "I'm starting to think I really can't do this." This statement seemed to have struck a nerve with Luna.
Before anyone can react; she approached Sam, looked her square in the eye and lightly yet swiftly slapped her across the face. This sudden strike took Sam completely off guard. "Dude...what the heck was that for" she muttered while rubbing her cheek slightly, "I thought you were supposed to help me, not hurt me."
After taking a moment to calm down and giving her girl a kiss on the cheek she slapped, Luna spoke. "Sorry for the smack, hon" she stated, "but I had to knock some sense back into you." In that moment, Luna fell into a tirade.
"The gal I fell in love with and wanted to date for so long never doubted herself" she stated firmly, "least of all, not this much." She then took out her phone and showed a picture slide show of all the things they did together. "Remember, when we took this first pic" she asked, "this was when I talked you into trying Cajun food for the first time.
Sam smiled slightly at the memory; she felt rather hesitant in trying the establishment's "Ragin' Cajun" Gumbo. But Luna really seemed to enjoy her bowl of it and saw how happy it made her feel inside. The next pic showed the two of them go karting.
"Remember this one" Luna asked, "this was sometime after you said you wanted to try your hand at driving but were too afraid to." She added how, as a baby step, they would test her driving out at the Go-Kart track. "I remember that day" Sam murmured with a small giggle, "you kept closing your eyes and saying I was going too fast."
The two couldn't help but laugh at the memory, when they looked at Luna's expression on the picture. "I may have freaked out a bit there" she admitted, "but I stayed with you through every lap and did my best to instruct you. The next picture showed them playing for the first time as a band.
"This one was my favorite, brah" Luna said with a blissful sigh, "this was my first time being part of a band, after such a long time being a solo act...I was so nervous." Sam couldn't help but raise an eyebrow and asking if it wasn't something else that made her anxious that day. "Are you sure you weren't just nervous because this was where we first met" she asked, "because that sweat on your brow certainly looks like it."
Luna scrunched up her face in a fake scowl and playfully smacked her girl on the arm. "Okay...my point is that each of these memories has something in common" she stated, "during each of these times, each of us tried to wuss out." Chunk smiled with a nod and concluded the statement with "but during each time, the other helped you push on."
Sam looked down at the pictures on the phone and smiled slightly. Then, she felt Luna's arms hug tightly around her. "What I'm getting at is...dancing can be hard" she admitted, "but as long as we have each other to pick ourselves up, whenever we fall; it can also be fun." Sam took a moment to let Luna's words sink in.
Then, her eyes begin to slowly well up with tears; not from shame but from genuine love. With a bright grin, she kissed Luna on her cheek and thanked her for her support. "I can always count on you to keep my head on straight" she chuckled, "but...I'm still not sure if I can get this dancing thing mastered before the contest."
Upon hearing this, Chunk said that dancing was about more than just mastery. "As me mum used to say, 'dancing is about how you feel in your heart and soul'" he said in a feminine yet still cockney accent, "it comes more from the heart than it does from the feet." Upon hearing this, Sam began to slowly nod and murmur in understanding.
But there was still one lingering doubt that still kept whispering in her ears. "As much as I'm worried about tripping over my feet" she murmured, "I also never know what to do about my arms, when I'm dancing." Upon hearing this statement, Luna smiled at Sam and took her by the hands.
"That whole thing is super easy, brah" she chuckled, "'cause all you need to do is put 'em around your partner." With that said, she placed Sam's left arm around her shoulder and the right around her waist. This caused both ladies to pull themselves in rather closely to each other.
Chunk lightly snickered with delight, as both girls began to blush deeply at each other's touch. After coming back to his senses, he walked over to the stereo and played a slow song; Luther Vandross and Mariah Carey's "Endless Love." Upon hearing the melody, Luna cast Chunk a glance; as if to ask "why play this song?"
To which, he responded with "we've been dancing to so much fast paced music, I thought we'd slow things down a bit." At first, the girls hesitated; admitting that slow jams weren't their strong suit. But then, they remembered Chunk's advice, how dancing came more from the heart and not just the feet.
With that in mind, they decided to think about them just being in each other's arms and trust that the other will lead them well. After each of them let out a soft sigh, they began to move about the floor; slowly but surely. Chunk's expression slowly morphed into one of surprise, For the moment, the girls appeared to be moving along smoothly.
As the song went on, Sam's dancing began to show some progress. She managed to remember the right steps and she hadn't stepped on Luna's toes even once. But all these thoughts seemed to go unnoticed, for the most part.
All Sam could think about was how happy she was in Luna's embrace and how peaceful this moment felt. After a moment or two, she finally decided to speak up. "Hey, Lunes" she murmured, "I just wanna say that...win or lose, I'll be happy just being with you."
This comment took Luna off-guard and a strong blush suddenly crept its way onto her cheeks. "Uh...yeah, I'm right there with you" she giggled nervously, "I'm still hopin' we win, though." The two shared a soft laugh, gazed into each other's eyes and leaned in for a soft yet loving kiss.
When they broke apart, Sam rested her head upon Luna's chest and sighed. Luna smiled, as a tear of joy trickled down her cheek. As the song slowly drew to its close, they softly sang it to each other while dancing.
Whoa, and I
I'll be that fool for you, (For you, baby)
I'm sure (Yes, I'm sure)
That you know I don't mind (You know I don't mind, I don't mind)
Oh, yeah, yeah, yes
You'd be the only one
'Cause no- no one can deny
This love I have inside
And I'll give it all to you
My love (My love, my love)
My my my endless love
Another week had passed and the time had come, at last for the 33rd Annual "Loco Legs" contest. Luna was seen outside of the Royal Woods Lodge; dressed in a sleeveless gown, long white pearl earrings and purple high heel shoes. She had been waiting in the parking lot for almost ten minutes but couldn't see any sign of Sam.
While she waited, she took a gander at all the couples that were coming. Of course, she saw hers and Sam's parents in attendance. She also saw Lori walking in with Bobby; who, from what she heard had to work overtime at the Casagrande family bodega for two weeks straight in order to come.
She saw Luan with her boyfriend, Benny; Leni with Chaz, her Pop-Pop with his girlfriend, Myrtle. She even spotted Clyde and both his dads coming to the competition. "Going to the party solo, dude" she asked, to which Clyde shook his head and gestured towards the parking lot.
Coming up the pathway was Haiku; a friend of her younger sister, Lucy and a fellow Goth. "Whoa" Luna cried softly in surprise, "I didn't know you were into dark girls, dude." Clyde and Haiku smiled at each other and walked in hand-in-hand. "She may be into creepy stuff" he admitted, "but she and I know how it feels to pine after unobtainable lovers."
To follow up the statement, the both of them soon began gazing at pictures of their so-called crushes; Clyde's being Lori and Haiku's being a supposed vampire boy. "Plus, it also helps that Clyde's kinda-sort of cute" Haiku added softly, "you know...for an upbeat human boy." Luna chuckled at her moxie and gave the both of them a thumbs up, as the pair went up the remainder of the path.
Another five minutes passed and Sam still hadn't shown up. On the surface, Luna tried to appear calm and collected. But on the inside, she was beginning to fear the worst; that she might've been stood up. Then, she suddenly felt someone's hand upon her shoulder; causing her to yelp softly.
She quickly spun around, expecting to see Sam. But to her dismay; she saw that it was only her brother, Lincoln. "Don't spook me like that, Bro" she grumbled, "you almost gave me a heart attack." Lincoln, dressed in his trademark orange shirt and a pair of semi-formal khakis, gazed confusedly at his older sister.
"Are you okay, Luna" he asked with concern, "if you're not feeling well, I could ask for Lori to give you a ride home." Upon being asked this, Luna quickly refused; proclaiming how she didn't want anyone's night to be ruined because of her. "I guess I'm just jumpy is all" she stated, "been out here waiting for Sam...but she hasn't shown up yet."
Sensing that his sister was in distress, Lincoln gave Luna a sweet smile and hugged her softly in his arms. "Don't you worry, Luna" he assured, "Sam doesn't seem like the type of gal to leave her better half hanging." Feeling reassured by his words, Luna thanked Lincoln with a soft squeeze and a kiss on the forehead; much to his mild disgust.
She then asked if he was meeting Ronnie Anne for the contest or if he was going stag. "Okay...first off, Ronnie Anne and I are not a thing" he groaned exasperatingly, "even if we were; she's gotta help at the Bodega, since Bobby has the night off for the contest." This news appeared to appease Luna but she still wondered about why he came.
It was then that Lincoln suddenly felt a blush form on his face. Before Luna could ask what the deal was, she heard a trio of voices calling out Lincoln's name. She looked behind him and saw three girls from his school, all dressed up.
One she recognized was his secret crush, Paige. The second was a girl many addressed as "Girl Jordan" (due to her and her brother bearing the same name) and the third was a young yet tall and slender girl. She had tan skin, freckles, black hair that curled up at the back end with two strands of hair standing out, two pairs of eyelashes and noticeably slanted eyes.
Lincoln saw the confused look on his sister's face and introduced the third girl. "Luna, this is Stella" he stated, "she was the new girl I got so worried over so long ago?" The memory he spoke up suddenly came to Luna like a flash and she couldn't help but giggle.
"I'm guessin' you managed to win her over with your own charms and not someone else's, Bro" she said while patting Lincoln's head. Shyly, Lincoln nodded in reply and introduced Stella to Luna. "Oh, yeah; I've heard about you" she stated, "you're the Hard Rock sister Lincoln told me about."
Luna couldn't help but chuckle proudly and give a slight bow. "That's me, luv" she stated, "the one and only, Luna Loud." With a joyful giggle, Stella asked if she would sign her notebook.
"If Lincoln's right and you do become a star, I wanna be the first to have your signature" she requested eagerly. With a humbled yet flattered laugh, Luna was given a pen by Lincoln and she used it to sign her symbol on the notebook cover. The young lady squealed with delight and happily thanked Luna for her kindness.
After that, Luna questioned why three of them were here for him. "As I recall; last time you tried to do multiple dates at once, you almost got in trouble" she stated, "do you really wanna have that happen again?" Lincoln nodded slightly, acknowledging his mistake at the Sadie Hawkins Dance.
"But this is an entirely new idea" he stated, "the girls here suggested and I agreed that each of them would take turns dancing with me." Intrigued, Luna asked Lincoln to elaborate further on his plan. "During the contest, I start off dancing with one of them" he explained, "if I am still going but one tires out, I go to the second of the three."
At first, Luna still felt suspicious; believing that this was a ploy for Lincoln to try and win the prize. But then, Girl Jordan said she was the one to suggest it. "You see...none of us could find partners/dates for this contest and it made us feel rather discouraged" she confessed. "That's when your brother came in" Paige chimed in, "he offered to be a date for each of us, so long as we took turns."
The idea seemed to make sense but Luna still felt worried. "It's fine, Luna" Stella assured, "truthfully, I think it's really sweet of your brother to put himself out like this for others" she said appreciatively, offering Lincoln a soft hug. The other two ladies seemed to have the same idea and soon, they joined in the embrace as well.
However, this display of appreciation/affection almost got the better of Lincoln. His face began to heat up so much; possibly, steam would shoot out from his ears. Seeking to find a way out, as he inched closer to passing out from his mind overheating; Lincoln spotted a car entering the lot.
"Hey, Luna; aren't those your bandmates in there?" he asked softly, after breaking apart from the girls. Luna looked over and saw that it was, indeed George and Ruth. But she also noticed another girl was sitting in the back seat.
As the doors opened and Ruth left the shotgun side, she opened the other door and carefully helped the third passenger out. Said girl had her hair done up into a ponytail, wore a white pearl necklace around her neck and was wearing peach colored box-heel shoes. It wasn't until Luna spied a familiar teal streak in the girl's hair and her t-shirt and jacket when she realized she was gawking at Sam.
Seeing her girl so dolled up caused Luna's jaw to drop slightly. She was in such shock, she barely noticed that Sam was standing right in front of her. "Hello-o-o, Lunes; are you awake" the girl asked while waving her hand in front of Luna's face, "you're kinda freakin' me out with the zombie stare a little."
In an instant, Luna's mind finally snapped back to reality and she quickly stood up straight with her chest puffed out slightly. George couldn't help but laugh at his friend's sheepish display. "Slow your roll, Tootsie" he said between chuckles, "we're not the army...so, there's no reason to stand at attention like that."
Ignoring her friend's comments; Luna's mind slowly calmed down and turned towards Sam's direction. "Sorry, dudes; I just...wow" she murmured while observing her girlfriend's look, "I mean...you were beautiful before, Samurai; but now...you're gorgeous!" The gruff yet flirtatious tone in Luna's voice, when she whispered the last word caused Sam to blush deeply.
"Heh...Thanks, Lunes; you clean up nice too" she mumbled softly, "sorry for being so late, Ruthie held me up with trying to pick out a dress." Though her eyes weren't visible, the raspberry Ruth delivered was more than enough of a retort towards Sam's jabs. "It's your first dance as a couple, Sammy" she insisted, "I wanted to make certain you looked just right for it."
Luna chuckled softly at her friend, thinking that she was starting to behave like Lori. At that moment, microphone feedback echoed from inside the lodge and the music suddenly kicked up. "Atención, mis amigos" cried Sebastian's voice from inside, "the contest is about to begin, all participants report to the floor in five minutes."
Upon hearing this, Luna took Sam's hand in hers and led her up to the entrance. Once inside, they gasped in awe at the atmosphere around them. The entire hall was decorated like an 80's discotheque, complete with a spinning disco ball hanging above them.
Sam chuckled at all this, thinking things might be more fun than she originally thought. But once she saw all the different dancers and couples present, she began to worry. "Oh, jeez; I think I may be in trouble" she thought, "I didn't think thismany people would be coming!"
The doubt that began to well up inside Sam felt like she was being squeezed between someone's fingers. This thought caused to slightly hyperventilate. Upon seeing her in such a state, Luna placed her hands on Sam's shoulders and looked her straight in the eye.
"Sammy...it's okay, I'm right here with you" she stated, "don't focus on the other dancers, only you and me." While still worried, the look in Luna's eyes coupled with her words helped ease the tension inside of her. With a strong smile, she gave Luna a look that said "I'm not backing down now!"
Within moments, Sebastian arrived on the stage and smiled brightly at the crowd. "Such a wonderful turnout we have here tonight" he laughed merrily, "I welcome you all to this year's contest." The crowd of contestants proceeded to clap loudly in appreciation.
"We're going to start things off with a little favorite of my Deejay's" Sebastian announced, "get ready...for the SAFETY DANCE!" Upon hearing this, both Luna and Sam squealed with delight. "THAT'S ONE OF THE BEST 80'S SONG EVER" they cried in unison, earning a few pleasant giggles from some nearby participants.
The two ladies blushed softly at each other, both from discovering they liked the same song...and from almost making a scene. After that, Sebastian gave the signal and the deejay began playing the first song. As the music began to play, Sam suddenly began to feel anxious.
It was as if all the lessons she learned had suddenly vanished, the moment the song played. Casting a slight glance Luna's way, Sam saw her boo smiling at her and patting her palm against her chest lightly. Upon seeing this, Sam suddenly remembered what Chunk said; that dancing comes from the heart, not the feet.
She took in a few calm breaths, closed her eyes and allowed herself to just listen to the music. Within moments, a warm sensation filled up within her chest. This feeling began to travel through every other part of her body.
Then, just as the keyboard music kicked in; something happened. Within seconds, Sam began bobbing her head slightly to the rhythm and her heels started tapping. Luna couldn't help but smile, when she saw her moving.
"There you go, luv" she said proudly, "you got the beat...let's see if you can dance to it." With that, Luna took Sam by both hands and brought her by her side. All around them, other couples were seen dancing to the song as best as they could.
We can dance if we want to, we can leave your friends behind
Cause your friends don't dance and if they don't dance
Well they're are no friends of mine
I say, we can go where we want to a place where they will never find
And we can act like we come from out of this world
Leave the real one far behind
And we can dance.
After a minute and a half, Sam began to feel more comfortable with the dance moves. "How are ya holdin' up, Samurai" Luna asked suddenly, after doing a twirl; "think you can keep goin' still?" As a response, Sam did a saucy pop and lock with her hips in her direction.
As the song progressed; several of the dancers were having such fun, many of them sang along to the music.
(Lincoln)Ah we can go when we want to the night is young and so am I(Clyde)And we can dress real neat from our hats to our feet(Lynn)And surprise 'em with the victory cry
(Benny)I say we can act if want to if we don't nobody will
(Luan nuzzling Benny affectionately)And you can act real rude and totally removed
And i can act like an imbecile
Sebastian smiled joyfully at how strongly and passionately all the dancers were performing. "Things are off to a good start, everyone" he stated, "let's see how long we can keep it up!" As the first song slowly drifted to its end, everyone still appeared to be hanging on; even Luna and Sam.
"How are ya holdin' up there, Samurai" murmur the purple-clad rocker, "think you can keep on rockin'?" Sam gave her a wide grin, followed by the "rock on" devil horns gesture; as if to say she's still hanging on. "Can't get rid of me that easily, Lunes" she chuckled, "I'm in it to win it!"
Luna was amazed by her girlfriend's show of confidence. "Wow, I haven't seen Sam this pumped in ages" she thought to herself, "to be honest...it's kinda sexy!" The deejay fiddled around with his turntable a bit and the second song began to play.
"This one goes out to all those who grew up in the Funk Age" he stated, "time to boogiiiiiie!" With that said and with a press of a few buttons, the next song began to play. Within seconds, the entire hall was illuminated in the lights flashing off the disco ball.
In that moment, both Luna and Sam felt a chill creep up their backs. "Ugh, disco music" they said in unison, "if they start playing Y.M.C.A. or Disco Inferno, I'm outta here." With a gasp of surprise, both ladies looked into each other's eyes and smiled; while prepping themselves.
"Disco's not your thing either, I'm guessin'" inquired Luna, "the feeling's mutual." Sam frowned slightly and shook her head, stating that it was only certain songs from the disco era she disliked. "Hopefully, they'll pick something we can dance to" Sam muttered, earning a nod from Luna. At last, the music kicked in and the beginning notes sounded rather...creepy.
Then, it suddenly became bouncier and Luna suddenly gasped with realization. "Brah, it's MJ" she cried with delight, "they're playin' my Halloween jam!" Upon listening to the song a tad more, Sam realized that the melody in question was Michael Jackson's Thriller.
"Yeah, I remember" she murmured while swaying slightly, "Ruth says she plays this, whenever she wants to unwind." Despite her familiarity with the song, Sam admitted she was clueless in how to dance to it. "Dude, don't think to much; just dance" giggled Luna, as she took Sam by the hand.
As the two young ladies continued dancing; Sam, once again felt a sliver of uncertainty surround her. Upon seeing everyone performing Michael's famous dance steps, she feared the idea of tripping over herself. But then, she took a moment to breathe and let the music flow through her.
With Luna's help, the two began copying everyone else's movements and things began to flow smoothly for them. But then, it happened; the time came when one or two couples were suddenly removed from the floor. The first to be eliminated was Albert and Myrtle, after Albert suddenly twisted his hip slightly during one of the dance moves.
The second was Lynn and Francisco, after Lynn got disqualified for bumping someone over with her hips. The process of elimination slightly worried Luna and she suggested "kicking it up a notch," on the next refrain. With a nervous gulp, Sam gave her a thumbs up and prepared herself.
As the second verse kicked in; Sam observed Luna closely and did her best to mimic every shimmy, slide and shoulder wiggle. Overtime, she soon grew used to the moves and was starting to have some real fun.
That this is thriller, thriller night 'Cause this is thriller, thriller night I'm gonna thrill you tonight
'Cause I can thrill you more than any ghoul could ever dare try
Thriller, thriller night
So let me hold you tight and share a killer, thriller, chiller
Thriller here tonight
Girl, I can thrill you more than any ghoul could ever dare try
Thriller, thriller night
So let me hold you tight and share a killer, thriller
'Cause this is thriller, thriller night
I'm gonna thrill you tonight
As the song went into an instrumental, Luna and Sam took a look around at the remaining competition. Despite his best efforts, Clyde was beginning to feel winded and needed his inhaler; thus causing him and Haiku to be removed. "Ah, man" he cried after taking in a breath, "I can't believe we lost this soon.
Haiku smiled at Clyde and assured him it didn't matter if they won or not. "What matters is we had a great time" she stated, "thanks for being my partner." With that said, she gave Clyde a soft yet friendly hug; which caused him to blush almost tremendously.
As the pair went to sit out on the sidelines, Luna and Sam slowly grew nervous; wondering how long they would last. The clock soon read 9 PM and the contest was still going. But there were now very few couples left.
Earlier, Harold and Howie McBride were removed after failing to keep up with a 60's rock song. A half hour later, Lynn Sr. had passed out from exhaustion and Rita had to help him over to the chairs; thus leading to their disqualification. By ten, there were now seven pairs remaining on the dance floor.
Well...seven and a half, if one were to count the three ladies with Lincoln. Despite the sweat dripping off of him, the young man still held on longer than anticipated. Alas, the time came when Paige couldn't keep up for much longer.
"No tears, Paige" Lincoln said sincerely, "you did very well and held out longer than most people here." Touched by his kind words, she wanted to thank him with a hug. But decided against it, proclaiming she didn't want to feel any more sweat on her.
You would think such a comment would upset Lincoln. But nope, he fully sided with her on the idea; due to his shirt now sticking to his back. After the current song ended, the deejay decided to play a little 90's classic.
Unfortunately, the moment the music began to play; Lucy and Silas suddenly stopped dancing and clamped their ears in disgust. "No...not bubble gum pop" Lucy cried dryly, "this is...it's too cute, it's disgusting!" Silas, meanwhile did everything he could to block out the music; even sticking a pair of punch glasses over his ears...but to no avail.
"It's no use" he wailed, "I can still hear it digging into my ears!" With a frightened yelp, the two Gothic preteens retreated to what they considered "the darkest place left remaining in the room." Sebastian cast a confused glance at the couple hiding in the far corner of the room.
"Well...it looks like another pair is out, everyone" he stated, "it's anyone's game now!" After the song ended, he decided to give the remaining participants a quick water break to hydrate themselves and passed out bottled waters out to everyone. After taking a quick gulp, Sam gave Luna a tired yet proud smile.
"I admit...I was nervous about this whole thing, at first" she said between breaths, "but I'm havin' a really good time tonight." Luna nodded in agreement and the duo toasted their bottles together. "Truth is, I don't care if we win or not" she stated, "I'm just havin' an amazingly rockin' time with you tonight."
Sam blushed slightly at the declaration and gave Luna a quick hug. At that moment; the deejay twirled a record in his fingers, played it and a soft 80's melody began to play. Hearing it caused Sam to beam with joy.
"Aw, yeah; this is my go-to chill jam" she exclaimed, "nothing beats Toto in my book." Upon hearing the name Toto, Luna admitted she only heard a few of their songs and wondered what one was playing now.
I hear the drums echoing tonight
But she hears only whispers of some quiet conversation
She's coming in, 12:30 flight
The moonlit wings reflect the stars that guide me towards salvation
I stopped an old man along the way
Hoping to find some old forgotten words or ancient melodies
He turned to me as if to say, "Hurry boy, it's waiting there for you"
The moment the drums kicked in, Luna recognized it. "My pop said he listened to this tune a lot in college, years ago" she stated, "it's a pretty cool jam." Before anything else could be said, Sam suddenly pulled Luna towards her and the two began dancing to the beat; all while never turning away from each other's gaze.
On the sidelines, everyone was admiring the dancing being done by those that remained. "I'm impressed by how long everyone's been holding up" commented Lynn Sr., "I'm especially surprised by Lincoln and Luna." The other Loud Sisters around him all murmured in agreement, some complimenting on Luna and Sam's chemistry.
Soon, Carol Pingrey and her boyfriend was called out; followed by Luan and Benny. Fifteen minutes later, another couple was removed and the dance floor was slowly becoming barren. Before the next song could begin, Stella admitted that she had enough and decided to knock herself out the competition.
Before leaving, she confessed how amazed she was by how long Lincoln held out. "I may not be an athlete like Lynn" he stated, "but you need a lot of energy to keep up with siblings like mine." Stella giggled at his statement and retreated to the chairs. On the next song, Leni and Chaz went on for as long as they could.
But soon, fatigue got the better of the young man and he fell back in a tired huff. With a worried yelp, Leni quickly helped up her boyfriend and kissed his forehead. "Don't you worry your pretty head, sweetie" Chaz murmured, "The Chaz just needs a little lie down.
With a smile, Leni helped him off the floor and led him over to the chairs. This left only a four pairs of couples out on the dance floor; two of which were Lori and Bobby along with Luna and Sam. The latter couple felt pleased by their progress, thus far.
"Brah...I think...I think we can win this" Luna said while gasping for breath but Sam offered no response. As the clock slowly reached 10, Sam felt like she was running on reserve fumes. "Sorry, my pretty purple pixie" she sighed in defeat, "I think...I'm just about out of juice, I dunno if I can go on for much longer."
Now, Luna was never a selfish gal and would never push someone beyond their limits; especially not Sam. But she wasn't willing to give up just yet, after getting this far. Just then, an idea suddenly came into her mind.
"I think I know just the pick me up you need, luv" she chuckled slyly, "but you gotta close your eyes." Feeling too tired to protest, Sam did as she was asked and closed her eyes shut. What happened next, in her mind, felt like she was being shocked by ten dozen lightning bolts.
She quickly opened her eyes and discovered Luna's lips pressed hungrily over her own. Despite the suddenness of the gesture, the power in her girl's kisses filled Sam with renewed vigor and spirit. Upon breaking apart, she let out a sudden and fierce battle cry of pleasure.
"How'd that feel, Sammy" questioned Luna, "did that get your engines running again." Sam answered her inquiry with a powerful kiss of her own, earning a series of hoots from the crowd around them. "Control yourself, girls" Rita cried out from the sidelines "there are preteens present!"
When the two finally broke away, they stared deeply into each other's eyes and could see the spark within them being relit. Sebastian saw them standing still and asked if the ladies were able to continue. "Keep playin' that music, dude" Luna stated, "me and my gal are in it till the end!"
Apparently pleased with this response, the samba school instructor asked the deejay to play the next song. After pressing a series of buttons, the melody began to play. Lori let out a wild squee of joy, recognizing the singers to be Boyz Will Be Boyz; her favorite band.
Luna and Sam, meanwhile were trying their best not to ralph all over the floor in mock disgust. "Dude, I dunno why my fam likes this stuff" she muttered, "there's zero energy in the music." Sam gave her a giggle and said she felt the same way.
In spite of the music, the ladies swallowed their pride and tried to dance to it as best as they could. Eventually; Mrs. Bernardo, the High School drama teacher, and her partner clocked out of the game. "O, TERPSCIHORE; BELOVED MUSE OF THE DANCE...WHY HATH YOU LEFT ME WITHOUT THY BLESSIIIIIING" she cried while flailing about dramatically, which caused her partner to back away from her.
With them gone, only three couples remained on the dance floor. Sam couldn't help but bounce excitedly at how close they were to victory. "Lunes, I think we're gonna win this" she cried with joy, "either this is real...or I've somehow, slipped into a dream due to exhaustion."
To prove to Sam she wasn't dreaming, she gave her a quick yet naughty pinch on the bottom; thus earning a small scowl from her. After the remaining pairs caught their breath, they presented themselves before Sebastian. "Very good, mis amigos" he chuckled with pride, "one of you is just inches away from victory."
In that moment, his mood suddenly became slightly firm. "Be prepared, everyone" he stated, "this is where things truly get serious." With that said, Sebastian gave a whistle and an unexpected guest joined him on the stage; a small mariachi band.
Upon seeing them, everyone recognized the group as the musicians from Jean Juan's French-Mex Buffet. "For this next song, these gentlemen are going to play a favorite of mine" he explained, "one that I am certain will help ignite some serious passion into those still with us!" With that, he gave the band a wave and the music started to play.
Upon hearing it, Luna and Sam recognized it as some sort of tango melody. "Ah, dang it" muttered Luna, "this music is cool...but I still can't dance to it." Hearing this, Sam gave her girl a wry grin; surprised that there was a form of dancing she didn't know how to do.
Following up on the irony, Luna gazed at her sister and mentioned how she only knew how to use her legs during dances. She had little to no clue how to use all the fancy arm moves tango dancers used. "Funny, Lunes...you're sounding so much like me way back when" Sam murmured playfully, "I also remember you telling me there's only one thing needed for one's arms in dance."
Before she could react, Luna saw Sam take hold of her arms and place them around her waist. After she placed hers over Luna's shoulders, Sam began to lead the way. While still keeping track of their steps, the two ladies were seen copying Lori and Bobby's moves as best as possible.
As the music went faster, their hearts began beating wildly; causing both ladies to laugh with glee. In that instant, their dancing became more fluid and the couple soon found themselves in their own little world. There was no one else around them, no dance floor beneath them.
It was as if they were dancing on air together, far from the eyes of others. As they continued dancing and twirling in the void, Sam rested her head against Luna's chest with a blissful sigh. "Oh, Luna...I've never felt so happy" she said dreamily, "if this is a dream...don't wake me up yet."
Luna softly chuckled at her sweetheart and, with all the strength she had, lifted Sam high over her head by her sides. This caused the young lady in question to giggle and squeal in surprise. After spinning her above her head for a moment or two, Luna suddenly swung Sam back into her arms in a dipped position; just as the music stopped.
After that, the two gazed deep into each other's eyes and slowly leaned in for a kiss. Then, without warning; the loud screech of microphone feedback suddenly snapped them back into reality. After the ringing finally died down in their ears, the ladies glared daggers up at Sebastian.
"Any particular reason you tried to render us deaf, dude" grumbled Luna, while poking a finger into her ears. With a soft smile, the Samba instructor gestured around the dance floor and asked if they noticed anything missing. Confused; the two ladies looked around them and did, indeed notice something amiss.
To Luna's left, Sam saw that Lincoln and Girl Jordan had called it quits. Then, Luna soon noticed Bobby and Lori panting breathlessly. At first, Luna began to worry; thinking that her sister and boyfriend were near unstoppable.
Then, Bobby pulled out a handkerchief from his shirt pocket and waved it over his head like a white flag. "I'm done, yo" he heaved, "I've gone as long as I could...but I'm done." Upon seeing her "boo-boo bear" in such a tired state, Lori sat him down on the floor and began massaging his legs.
"Another couple has called it quits" Sebastian cried with excitement, "which means we have our new Loco Legs champion!" Despite their still lingering fatigue, the other contestants still found enough power in their voices to cheer for the winning pair. Utterly elated by the news, Sam suddenly began bouncing excitedly with delight.
It was a decision she would come to regret, a split-second later; as the pain in her joints suddenly shot through her legs. With a mildly pained yelp, she collapsed slightly in Luna's open arms and smiled. "I can't believe it, dude" she whispered with pride, "we won the contest, I...I can't believe it."
Luna smiled warmly at her and kissed Sam tenderly on the cheek. "We won more than just the contest, brah" she stated, "you've conquered your fear and danced like nobody was watching...I'm proud of you!" Touched by her girlfriend's continuing support, the two shared a quick hug.
Once they made contact, however; both ladies suddenly pulled back after feeling each other's still aching bodies press against each other. Thankfully, the pain only lasted for a few seconds and they gave each other a warm grin. At that moment, they heard Sebastian's voice calling from behind them and turned around.
"Vamos, ladies; come and claim your prize" he chuckled while gesturing at the trophy, "that is...are you able to come claim it?" Upon hearing this question, Lynn popped up and "volunteered" to accept it in their place. But she was quickly held back by her parents, who both gave her looks of disapproval.
After giving each other a smile, both ladies placed their arms around each other's shoulders and each acted as one's right or left leg. Slowly but surely, they made their way up to the stage and took their place beside the impressive trophy. "This is a big moment, tonight" Sebastian stated, "you two are the first same-sex couple to win the contest...how do you feel?"
Still feeling winded from the whole thing, both ladies gave the man a "rock on" hand gesture. This was followed up with them kissing each other on the lips. With a hearty chuckle and a bright smile, Sebastian seized this opportunity and took their photo.
After the picture was taken, it suddenly began to tilt side-to-side rapidly. "Nope, move it to the left more" murmured a voice, "it needs to look just right on the wall." As the camera pans out, a young woman with a familiar pixie cut hairdo was seen hanging the photograph on the wall of a living room.
"How's it look now, Samurai" muttered a mature yet still familiar voice, "I think this is a good spot for it." As the woman moved away from the wall, it is revealed to be none other than an older Luna Loud. Her pixie cut hair had grown slightly in the back, she wore purple lipstick across her full-looking lips and her eyes still had the same purple eye shadow.
She still wore her trademark paperclip earrings, bracelets, purple t-shirt with a skull, purple skirt, boots and white belt. But she now sported a violet leather jacket, fingerless gloves and her right hand showed off a glimmering golden ring. Luna scratched her chin in thought, carefully studying where she placed the frame and nodded.
"Yup, I think this is perfect" she muttered, "it now stands alongside all our other best moments." There was a soft "trip, trap" coming from behind Luna, causing her to turn around. She smiled, upon seeing a voluptuous figure standing at the doorway.
Upon entering, the figure revealed herself to be Sam; who (like Luna) had also blossomed into womanhood. Her blonde hair, still bearing the teal streak, had grown so long; she decided to do it up in a ponytail (like that in the photograph. In terms of clothing style, Sam remained much the same.
Same burgundy pants with the tears, same earrings, same t-shirt and jacket. The only differences in her look, these days were the busty "girls" resting beneath her shirt. She also had a ring on her right hand and lipstick coated over her lips (but hers was teal to go with her hair stripe.)
Sam casually approached Luna from behind and hugged her arms lightly around her neck. "Yup, it goes perfectly with the rest of them" she sighed blissfully, while kissing Luna's cheek. Upon pulling back, the other pictures on the wall were of other memories from their past.
Just below the dance contest photo, there was one featuring Luna at her first professional gig. This was revealed to be part of an article, its headline reading "Luna Loud Rocks the World." Beside that was a picture Leni took of herself, Sam, Ruth and several of the other Loud Sisters at a bachelorette party for Sam.
After that was a photo of the two of them in wedding garb; Luna choosing to wear the tux and Sam going with the gown. To the left of that was a picture of them entering their new house; with Luna carrying Sam up the steps, Bridal Style. Finally, the last picture was one of Sam; who appeared to be sporting a baby bump belly.
The two stepped back and took a good look at all the memories. Then, they gazed into each other's eyes and leaned in for a warm kiss. Upon pulling away, eight seconds later; Sam rubbed her hand slightly over her belly.
"What do you think the little one would say, when she hears her mama couldn't dance at one time" questioned Luna playfully, earning a soft punch in the shoulder from her wife. "Let's wait until she's born and can talk before that happens, missy" Sam chuckled, "but I have a feeling she won't have the same fears I did...when the time comes." With that said, the couple shared another kiss and proceeded off to the kitchen for lunch.
Over the years they had been together, Luna and Sam shared many wonderful memories. But Sam would always look back to the night of the dance contest with the most fondness. Not only did it help her break out of her shell.
That night also gifted Sam with yet another way to get close with the woman she loved most. A memory she looked forward to sharing with her children, when the moment was right.
(AN: Thus ends Follow My Lead, a story I've put a lot of thought and heart into. I wish to take a moment to say a few things, before this is over.
First, the movie The Duchess Approves was a moment inspired from Gravity Falls; where Grunkle Stanley Pines watches the very film in question...and loves it. The reactions Luna and the gang had during their viewing were all inspired from him.
Second; I hope I made the contest, Sam and Luna's relationship, Sam's reluctance and fear of dancing and the romantic moments present believable for you all. I wanted to make sure it all felt right, especially on Lunes and Sammy's part.
Third: I wish to give a shoutout to a fellow fanfic writer, Loud House fan and fellow LunaxSam shipper; LunaLoudFan23. I hope you don't mind me using certain names and stuff for this. I also hope you like the story, my friend.
Fourth; as stated in the disclaimer, I hold no ownership of any of the songs referenced. Each of them belongs to their respective bands and studios...except for the BoyZ Will Be BoyZ one, that belongs to the show itself.
Last but not least, I'm sorry if this story is a little long. At first, I thought of doing this as a multi-chapter story. But then, I realized it all felt perfect for a oneshot.
In any case, hope you'll all enjoy the story and let me know what you think in the reviews. Just...please, keep your critiques and commentary civil and clean; thank you)