Maks is back. For now.
Sources close to Dancing with the Stars confirm to Usmagazine.com that Derek Hough, 24, has temporarily left the reality competition due to illness. Pinch-hitting for him: the recently eliminated Maksim Chmerkovskiy, who will help Hough's celeb partner Joanna Krupa in rehearsals. (Krupa's on-air partner this Monday has yet to be determined.)
On Thursday, Hough wrote on Twitter of mounting, flu-like symptoms: "I think I'm getting the [flu]," he wrote, noting "serious sweats . . . My whole body is aching like crazy I can barely stand up . . . And I'm coughing like crazy."
Later, he wrote of a three-hour visit to the doctor's. "Had a temperature of 104 . . . Had an IV in my arm for 2 hrs . . . Maks is steppin up for me helpin jo . . "
The returning Chmerkovskiy, 31, has some awkward encounters to look forward to: his ex-fiancee Karina Smirnoff (they broke off their engagement last month) as well as Aaron Carter. Carter, 21, told Usmagazine.com that "the energy has definitely gotten a lot better" since Chmerkovskiy's ouster.
"We have the opportunity now to focus on the dancing without the drama," he said.
"I need to get the pieces back together," Chmerkovskiy told Usmagazine.com of his newly single life.