That had been six months ago. Jane had made good on her promise to the doctor and had stuck to the diet plan and taken all the pills. The major change was the job. She realized there was no way she was going to be able to stay away from the booze and still work at Bistro 30. Too many temptations and too many crazy men always trying to buy her drinks, among other things.

It was okay, she had been doing the bar thing for years. Despite earning excellent money with tips, she lived in a junky apartment with a weird roommate and drove an old car. She had basically nothing to show for all she had earned. It was time for a change. She was ready.

She had applied for the job as a receptionist at the dance studio. She didn’t have strong office skills, but the wife of the owner assured her that ‘personality’ was what they wanted on the job.

“You will meet and greet the customers when they come in the door. Yes?” Lady G said. “It is important that they feel welcome and that we want them to be here. They are not just our customers; they are our guests. Very welcome guests, yes?”

Lady G was foreign and tended to repeat herself a lot. It was okay. Jane liked her. Lady G was older than Jane by about ten years. Funny, they even looked a little alike. Small and slim. Blue eyes, to Jane’s green and dark hair to Jane’s red. Yes, Jane liked her and liked the studio. It was in a good section of town and everything about it smelled fresh and new. Plus, it emanated a certain quality.

What was it? She thought to herself. Oh, yes. Money. Jane liked that. She like it a lot.

She accepted the job and went to work. Mr. G was in and out of the studio and she just caught glimpses of him. Very tall, slim, and older, but, quite good looking when you got him in focus.

Larry Gee started staying later in the evenings to help her out with the desk. Jane found him to be sweet and kind.

 Not anything like the guys in the bar. They were loud, boorish, arrogant, and dominating. All those men were like cookie cutter dolls, Jane thought to herself. They only want to own me, like a thing, like a life-size doll. Not a person. Not like Mr. G. There’s a guy who knows how to treat a lady like a lady.

So, Mr. G became Larry and Jane and he became working buddies. Larry ran the studio with his wife and gave private lessons to individuals and couples. After she had been at the studio a couple of months, Jane was able to save up some money for private lessons.

There were other instructors at the studio of course. The older guy with dyed hair, Fred. Fred was married and had been teaching dance lessons forever. The Asian guy who was very slick and only did evenings. There was the older woman, Maude, who was very nice and kind to Jane. There were couple of twenty-somethings there too. A college girl and then Studly guy. Studly naturally would have been quite a catch.

But man, were the women all over him. He’s clearly not gay, and they can’t get enough of that! Too much competition for sure. Jane ruminated. Ah, none of them compared to Mr. G. He was the man, Jane sighed dreamily.

It was not long before Jane and Mr. G were doing privates in the evenings before he went home. Jane was in heaven. She could not remember any man ever making her feel quite this way. Ever. Except for that time at Bistro 30 with the owner…

Continued Part IV