The Dancer and the Mafia's Chef

The Dancer and the Mafia's Chef

By:  Diane Darya  Completed
Language: English
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In Lyon, France, a Moroccan dancer and a chef employed by the mafia find themselves drawn to each other in the captivating novel, "The Dancer and the Mafia's Chef." Their passionate romance unfolds amidst the vibrant dance community, intertwining their worlds and challenging them to confront hidden truths while navigating the complexities of trust and self-discovery.

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35 Chapters
Chapter One - Dancing in the Misty Morning
Amara used to take ballet. She'd even learned ballroom, salsa, tango, swing. Now she just listened to the beat, bouncing and banging her head and hips to the sounds surrounding her. Clubs were the only places she felt alive, like she could be something, someone. Even if she was just another face in the crowd, another body swaying and skipping, she existed. Language, color, race, clothing, nothing mattered once the lights went out and the neon came up. Everybody grabbed glowsticks and got covered with paint. It didn't matter that she was far from home and living with her cousins, that she was in a different country where she still had problems with the language at times. Everyone was just there to dance and be a mindless mass of music together. She could do that.What she couldn't do was mornings. That was why she always had afternoon or evening shift at her cousins' bakery. She would walk in the house and shower the party off at 4 AM, then sleep while everyone else worked til noon. Th
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Chapter Two - A Rainbow Collision
Declan hated Police Officers. Gendarmerie. Despicable word. No one at the place could take a joke. Too often any he crackedlanded him warnings. Honestly. Other people around him with light skin could say things without warning. He made a face at a Gendarme without thinking and received a glare inreturn. "Pfft á toi aussi!" he called after the officer."Eh, garcon. Troubadour! Un appel au teléphone!”Blinking, Declan turned to the voice with a shocked expression, wounded. Why, why were people so mean to him all the time. Garçon was especially rude. Merxx. He took a deepbreath and gave the gendarme a bright smile as he stood up. "Jarrive!" I'm coming. Declan walked over and into a room. Grabbing the phone, he said in English, "Declanspeaking, how can I help—""What in the hell were you thinking, pulling a stunt like that? Declan, sometimes I don't even know why I bother to ask you to help.”Declan sighed. "Mal, it's fine. It got settled, M. Dupont will be out tomorrow morning.” Mali
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Chapter Three - Early encounters
Amara had been planning on putting off telling Declan where she actually was for at least a day, to give herself time to recoup and actually look more decent when he came. But Milo had changed that. Now she had less than two hours before Declan showed up and—"Bonne après-midi!"The greeting sounded a bit louder than it needed to be. People. Amara continued working and thinking about how she would make things work for her. She could finish decorating this batch of cupcakes and slip over to the bathroom, and make sure her face didn't look too tired. She'd put on foundation upon waking, but that was it, and it had mostly been to hide the dark circles. That had been hours ago now, too. She hadn't even bothered with mascara or eyeliner, considering she was just working in the back anyway. If necessary, she could dash upstairs and grab her purse and put at least those on."Amara!"Her hand slipped and she stabbed the cupcake she was working on. She swore and covered it up with icing. "Wha
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Chapter Four - Unexpected Antics
Amara finished putting some lip gloss on; she wasn t going anywnhere crazy, probably, but It was a step up from Carmex. She 'd cleaned up from work, put on some light makeup, and wore capris and a loose semi-sleeve shirt that almost fell off one shoulder. She was going to be comfortable, and she was going to look nice doing it. She could put forth the effort of looking prettier when she had gotten more sleep. And if he actually asked her out. First, to see if he was still around.Checking to make sure her phone was in her back pocket, she popped down to the bakery. There wasn't anyone left other than her uncle Don checking inventory again. She glanced out the front window; Declan wasn't at those tables either."He left a while ago," Milo said behind her, making her swear and jump. "Want to text him?”Amara scowled at him as she reached for her phone. "I was just—" Her phone wasn't there. She checked her other pockets.Milo grinned and held up her phone. Again.Amara glared at him an
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Chapter Five - Lunch Plans
"Amara!" a female voice demanded in French over the phone. "You should tell me these things sooner!""Oh my gosh Shay," Amara responded, with a wince from her friend's tone and a small smile anyway, "it just happened!""No, it did not 'just' happen, it was planned and I was not informed."Amara rolled her eyes, leaning back in the seat in the café. "Technically, Milo planned it. I didn't even find out about it until I was working, you know."Shay huffed over the phone. "Well; I guess I'll save my tirade for him then. But still."Amara chuckled. "Why the big deal? You know I usually don't tell you about meeting people until at least the second time, unless craziness happens.""Um, you met outside of the police station, he kissed your hand, and he speaks Arabic. Not only that, but he wasn't a total creep about it. I think that's pretty crazy."Amara giggled. "It was 5 AM! I wasn't going to text you then!""I would have seen it when I got up.""And called me in the middle of work.""Not
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chapter Six - Shadows of Destiny
Amara washed her hands briefly. "Hey I've clocked out for break for an hour," she said to Don.He gave her a nod. "Don't forget for too long, alright?"She rolled her eyes with a smile. "I will watch the time.""Hey," Milo said genially as he strolled in from the front, picking up some more deliveries. "There's some shady character with a backpack out back."Amara elbowed him. "Be nice." Their back door wasn't exactly unknown to the neighborhood, although it was likely Declan he was talking about."Well he wasn't exactly kind in return, you know!" Milo returned, offended.She wasn't sure if he actually was serious or not. "Oh?""Yeah; I yelled at him, and he yelled right back."Amara pursed her lips, relaxing again. "Well duh; everyone yells at you.""Only because everybody wants me." He sang the last bit a little and grinned at her as he picked up the boxes to go.Amara would have shoved him if he hadn't been holding the boxes, and she knew he knew it. She rolled her eyes. "Yes, to l
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Chapter Seven - Late-Night Conversations
Amara grabbed her headset, then closed the door to the room she shared with some of her cousins. She was the only one in there, for now, and it would stay like that for at least an hour. She had her time to Skype Asher, her cousin back in Morocco. Even though they spoke in Arabic, and hardly any of her cousins even had a partial grasp on the language, the closed door made her feel better, more secure in talking.It rang, and before long she saw her cousin's face briefly freeze on the screen before moving again. "Hello!" he said cheerfully, waving.She grinned. "Hey! How are you?" Asher honestly felt more like a brother to her than a cousin; they had grown up together after his parents died. In some ways, they were even closer than she was with her actual brothers, but that may have been an age thing. Asher was just a year older than her, while her brothers were both at least four years younger."Good, great to see you again. Well, in a way." He chuckled."Yeah, sorry about last time,"
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Chapter eight - The past
Declan looked at himself in the mirror, unsure. He'd never been to a rave before. Never known what to dress in for one. So he wore all white, old skinny jeans he didn't use because he had new ones now, and a simple V-neck T-shirt. He gelled his hair into fashionably messy, and tied a purple checkered black scarf around his neck. Black shoes on his feet, he set out to the little area they were meeting in to go to the dance together.Amara showed up in tight capris and a tank, light cream that had obviously seen some paint before, though almost in a deliberate way, paired with a very thin grey cropped tee that hung loose over her. The paint looked slightly dulled, but still worked in the outfit. A long, plain gold necklace fell down over the shirt, accenting in a simple yet effective way. She wore flats, which also looked as if they'd been through a bit, but in a fashionably distressed sort of way. She grinned at him, small purse over her shoulder. "Don't you look fancy.""I don't sweat
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Chapter nine - Officially dating
A week and a half later, and Declan met up with Amara at the shopping district. They'd been texting, talking, meeting up every couple of days; thankfully he could afford the frequent bus travel. They spent some time window-shopping, laughing, and now eating lunch at a cafe. His choice, of course; and tab. Hhe didn't seem to mind."So what sort of fancy all-night joint do you work at, anyway?" Amara asked.Declan gave her a sheepish grin and swallowed. "It's a cooking job. I cook. But they work odd hours and so I supply food for them when they work their odd hours which gives me odd hours in return."Amara swallowed her food. "Alright. Did you just happen to find it randomly?" She gestured with her utensil."Well… um. Sort of. It's a long story." He looked around, never sure if people around him were going to overhear or not. If they cared. If it mattered. He swallowed and bit his lip. "It wasn't random, not really.""Sooo… what?" she inquired, completely unphased by his shiftiness. "Y
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Chapter Ten - Tears
The second Declan stepped into the club, something was off. The music too loud, the lights too bright, too many looked at Amara, tense, and squeezed her hand. Amara didn't really seem to notice, or rather, if she did she didn't think much of it. She just squeezed his hand back with an energetic smile and started into the crowd a little. He swallowed. He could do this, just breathe. Breathe. He could do that. Declan followed her in and let his body respond to hers. Amara stayed close, but only ever brushing him, having too much fun swaying and swinging around, hands in the air at times. Declan swallowed and tried to focus on something, anything, but just holding her hand wasn't currently enough, and Shay was dancing with another group right next to him. He swallowed and tried to ignore the strobe light, all of his movements jerky and off.Amara finally seemed to notice after forever, and she toned down her moves, moved closer to him. "You okay?" she asked. "Want some water?"He nodded.
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