Something that provides some cover in case he cracks after so many years without solo performances…maybe not a solo, then, but—how about the Bach Double? Dwight can play the second violin solo. Yes… He stood up abruptly.
He disappeared down the hall towards his office, whistling. He obviously expected it to go very well indeed. I got up and went back to the counter. I was way too awake to nap now.
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May as well get some practice in, I decided. My coffee was cold and my fingers were pleasantly warm and tingly from playing by the time other people started showing up for rehearsal. I laid my violin in its case and shook out my hands. A few minutes later, Dwight Richards came in. He was dark-haired and dark-eyed and really a handsome man. We were pretty good friends though. He dumped his violin case in a chair, stretched, looked around, and saw me. I picked up my styrofoam coffee cup and headed for the sink farther down the counter, hoping to discourage him. No such luck. And how is Ms.
Assistant-Concertmaster today? Oh, you know, could be better, could be worse, I said evasively, rinsing the cup and lid.
And you? He stood there silently at my shoulder until I threw away the cup and turned around, and I saw he was frowning. His scrutiny unnerved me. I looked away and saw principal violist Daniella Lewis walk in, scowl at us, and cross the room to sit down. I sighed.
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There was some excitement this morning. Alexis was pretty upset. Pretty cool, right? Our high-and-mighty concertmaster was upset? He paused. And that upset you? Dwight snorted. And that would be a Terrible, Bad Thing, right? He looked like he was thinking about stomping off. You were here before Alexis came, you must know that. I just got here six months ago and I can tell. I could feel my face turn red. For the opportunity to work with Alexis Brooks, of course.
The greatest violinist of our age—some say the greatest violinist who ever lived. And I get to share the first stand of the symphony with him.
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Dwight was staring at me like I was sprouting horns. If the conversation had soured before, it was about to turn absolutely rancid. Alexis leaned around the corner behind me, out of the hallway. Oh, Dwight, there you are. His eyes cut to me, and I swear he winked. Alexis disappeared back down the hallway. Dwight stood looking at the corner with an unpleasant expression on his face. Then he turned back to me. Chris, I… He glanced back at the hall and shook his head. Just take care of yourself, okay? He went down the hall after Alexis.
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I gathered up my violin and music folder and made my way out onto the stage before Dwight and Alexis came back. Tossing out my coffee was beginning to seem like a bad decision, even if it had been cold.
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I hoped the bright stage lights would help. Quite a few others had come onstage too, and the hall was filling with the sound of an orchestra warming up, a distinctive cacophony of sound that is always unique, and yet somehow fundamentally the same. That sound always quickened my pulse, no matter how many times I heard it. I left my music on the stand and went over to one of the few friends I had made, my best friend, Kolbi Edwards.
Kolbi was a pianist, one of the best I had ever heard. But she also played several other instruments, so though she was technically part-time with the symphony, she was involved in almost every concert. Funny instrument, the harp, she said as I approached. Popular culture says that angels play them. I wonder if the angels have blistered fingers and carpal tunnel syndrome like I do? Kolbi laughed too. Maybe, but not as much as you. So we know where the real complainers are.
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Her grin turned wicked. Out there where you are—maybe not so much. Oh, if only you knew. Why do you suppose Jack Duncan left? Jack Duncan had been the assistant concertmaster before me. I glanced over my shoulder—over half of the seats were still empty. Plenty of time. I have no idea. Why did he leave? Jack was the concertmaster of this symphony after Alexei Brooks retired back, oh, ten or fifteen years ago. I nodded. He and Madeleine rented a little house, planned to stay a couple months visiting family, and have a real vacation. Only Madeleine—Madeleine died, and—part of Alexis seemed to die with her.
He canceled all his engagements, bought the house they were renting, and just parked his life right there. And then the police accused him of the murder, I said, remembering the coverage, how gleefully the media had turned on their darling. Kolbi looked unhappy. They…well, they did. There was never really any evidence for that. And then at the trial it came out that the prosecution had falsified the evidence they did have.
The case was thrown out. Alexis, though—he was never the same. You can email me at sandra sandra-miller. Check www. When newly-unemployed music teacher Alannys Gale lands in Ravanmark, it seems to be the answer to her prayers. Ravanmark is a fantasy world where music is magic, the gods are the Greek Muses, an ancient sword of fabled power awaits a legendary hero Buy Now with 1 Credit. Taran shouldn't exist.