He'd gotten through a few more songs before the warmth in his belly spread, the writhing bodies filling the room around him slowing just slightly and the edges of his vision beginning to blur. His body knew the way, though, and it was only when he felt a tug at his sleeve, one of his new friends staring over at him breathlessly and mouthing something about taking a break that he stopped dancing. The woman, hair matted to her forehead and laughter deep in her throat, slipped an arm around Jean Claude's waist and he had just enough forethought to call back to Jenny that he'd meet her upstairs before he was swept away in that direction.
Names were exchanged - Eva, she all but shouted in his ear, fighting against the music - and they made their way up the stairs. It was a little more difficult than it should have been, a few of those steps deciding to be tricky, but he just leaned on her and giggled to himself.
In the middle of some rambling (and probably incoherent) story as they reached the landing, Jean Claude didn't notice the three men just ahead of them, walking with determination towards Carlos's table. He was just at the punchline, or the point, or maybe just the part he found funny for just that moment, when one of the men yelled out loud enough to pull his attention away.
"What the fuck, Jennifer?"
His head snapped in that direction, eyes still a little glazed and grin sliding onto his face. There was tension in the air, he could taste it, and the tequila in his blood told him to stride forward, hushed that bare whisper in the back of his mind that said to go after Jenny before the fight started. Pulling Eva along - she could sit on his other knee when Jenny came up, it was that simple - Jean Claude walked up to what was becoming a very interesting scene just in time to see the curvy blonde girl jump from Carlos's lap and hurry over to the other side of the table. Just in front of him, blocking his view at first so that he had to step to the side, were the three men, the smaller one in the center grabbing the blonde (Jennifer?) by the wrist and almost tossing her behind him. "Get in the car!" he shouted over his shoulder as she stumbled, eyes glazed and his two friends standing by looking lost, uncomfortable.
Jean Claude caught that familiar look in her eyes as she righted herself, tucking stray strands of pale hair behind an ear and casting a nervous look back to the man. As she hurried to do as she was told. He strode forward before he could help himself, grin still firmly in place and eyes gone a little cold for the width of the smile. "Calm down," he said, sliding a hand on his shoulder and looking up towards the man's eyes. "We are 'aving good time, no need for yellin-"
The man violently shrugged his way out of Jean Claude's grasp, almost tripping himself and colliding with one of his friends. "Back off, fag, I'm not talking to you." He turned his attention back to Carlos and Jean Claude knew he only had a few seconds before the situation exploded. Part of him wanted that, the excitement, but there was the press to consider, Chason as well when he got the morning paper, and really, for some odd reason, he wanted to lash out as well. And, for once, there was nothing to stop him.
"You stay the fuck away from my girlfriend, you fucking hear me," the man started again towards Carlos and Jean Claude reached out to grab his shoulder, hoping to pull him back as he took that suicidal step forward. "I said get off m-" was all he managed to get out, with an elbow aimed at Jean Claude's ribs, before the world slowed down around him.
It was easier than Jean Claude would have imagined, side stepping the blow, reaching up to grab the man by the nape of his neck, and smashing his face into the table. The smell of blood was sudden in the air as everything went back to normal after the show of speed, Jean Claude standing there as the man dropped to his knees, holding his nose.
"She is no your girlfriend tonight, hijo de puta," Jean Claude said calmly down at the mortal before turning his eyes back to his friends. His smile, which had vanished somewhere in the violence, instantly returned and he swayed a bit, having to grab at the table for stability. The other two looked more shocked than angry, staring at him for some reason, and he grabbed one of the glasses from the table, knocking it back, before calling to the blonde girl hovering frightened by the stairs. "Come here, little lamb. No reason to run off." He only realized he'd switched instinctively to French once the words left his mouth, though of course she didn't need to hear him to come under his sway.
Jean Claude again looked to the two remaining men, Jennifer scurrying over to tuck herself under one arm. "Your friend is very drunk now, I zink. You should take 'im 'ome before 'e is 'urting 'imself any more."