Eventually the crowd slowed to file into a vast, grandly decorated building. The moment I stepped through the doors I was bombarded by the waltz-like music of a full orchestra with decorations to match. The ballroom must have been 500 meters long with grand marble pillars lining the golden walls and a large crystal chandelier suspended from the ceiling. People twirled and pranced all around me in flowing dresses and gaudy, colored suits, every face hidden by an elaborate painted mask.
Almost at once I noticed a girl. She twirled elegantly with the music at the center of the great room, alone. But not because she was ignored, it was quite to the contrary. The entire room seemed to revolve around her. All the others danced around her in complicated, interweaving circles. She was wearing a long blue dress and she looked very beautiful, though I could not see her face under her sparkling diamond mask.
Full story available in Midnight Diner.