Status: Finished, yo

Not a Sound

I Hope in Time a Change Will Come

The next weeks fall apart like building blocks, but then put themselves back together.

Melissa and the boy, Trent, are expelled, and I'm left with a minor concussion. Ozzy only has a few scratches. I stay at home for two weeks and Ozzy, Marko, Jeena, and Collin come give me homework. Ozzy sometimes brings his trumpet over and plays for me. I press my fingers lightly on the bell and feel the vibrations. He offers me to try it, but I decline. I buzz on his mouthpiece though.

My mother is mad for a long while and almost refuses to have anyone come over while I have my concussion. She's not mad at me, though, and she understands what had happened. She's just thankful that this has finally ended.

After a while, my headaches go away and I can finally stand to have people around me for an extended period of time. Ozzy visits a lot during these periods. My mom met with him and she likes him and enjoys his company, even though apparently his trumpet playing is loud. One time he was over and was playing one of his pieces. I asked what it was about.

It's about the ocean, he says. It's about the fish in the sea.

I can't help but smile. I always thought it looked like it, I sign.

Ozzy grins back and his dimple pokes into his cheek. Turn around. He slips easily into sign language. I'll play it for you.

I turn around and I feel his trumpet bell press into my back. After a few seconds, I feel the sound go through it and it vibrates up my spine. I straighten and try not to giggle with how much it tickles. He keeps playing though, and I feel like I'm immersed in the music. I can feel the rhythm, the pitch changes, the dynamics, and the phrases through the reverberations. It gives me shivers when he moves his bell up my back and near the nape of my neck. Warm air pushes through the trumpet and rustles through my hair.

Then he quiets and the vibrations dwindle away. Ozzy? I sign, but all of the sudden I feel his arms slide around me from behind and his mouth presses against my shoulder. His hands wrap around my waist. My heart flutters. I feel safe and comfortable.

He shifts to my side and I look at him; a sweet smile is on his face and his eyes are bright.Do you... he asks in sign. Do you want to be my girlfriend?

A smile stretches across my face. Of course, I sign back, and he slips a hand behind my head and presses his lips against mine.

My heart sings a symphony then. The moment seems to last forever and I let myself sink into it. His lips are perfect on mine, my heart's thundering in my chest, and I get lost. I get lost in the song he's playing for me and only me. The tempo is just right, the rhythm in sync, the melody tugging at my soul, and I swear our hearts are dancing together. But like all songs, they all have to end. After one last second, we pull away, and I see Ozzy's breathing is a little harder than normal, but he's grinning.

That was magical, he says.

More like musical, I sign.

You're absolutely right. But something catches his attention. Oh, he says. Someone's knocking at your door.

I rise, still feeling a bit flustered, and we go to see who it is. When I open the door, I'm never more surprised in my life.

It's Melissa Ryder.

Hi, she says. She awkwardly shifts her weight from foot to foot.

My first instinct is to slam the door in her face, but I don't. There's a large lumpy gauze where her nose is on her otherwise perfect countenance and that stops me. What allows me to listen is that her eyes are not jeering or angry. They're sad. And... guilty.

I wanted to say I'm sorry, she says finally. I'm truthfully sorry, and I'm not here because my dad made me or anything. I came here on my own to formally apologize. And don't get me wrong, it's fine if you don't forgive me, I know I wouldn't if you did all that I did to me. I just... I'm sorry.

I stare at her mouth to make sure that I'm actually seeing the words right. I'm absolutely shocked. I almost can't look at her anymore. She must be lying. Her father must have put her up to this. But her face is so sincere...

After my mom died you reminded me so much of her, Melissa says. She was deaf too, but deaf from birth. I thought it was God punishing me to see you every day at school; mocking me with something I could never have. I was angry. I became this hateful person who only lived to see you in pain. I tried to stop, I really did, but I was so angry. I was angry all the time. Before my mom died I told her that I hated her for some petty reason and I cannot forgive myself for that. It was like... It was like she reincarnated into you to torment me for that sin. So I fought back.

She shakes her head, and something glimmers in her eye. My heart sinks into my stomach. I'm so sorry, Aria. That glimmer forms into a tear. I wish I found myself sooner. I didn't mean for it to take all these years to renew myself. I hope that someday you will forgive me. I... She shifts awkwardly. I guess this is goodbye. Then she turns and begins to walk away.

Something surges in me, but it's not a wildfire. It's something warm, but not hot, like light. Like energy. Like electricity. And I lurch forward and snag her wrist. Melissa turns, startled, and my mouth opens and closes like a fish out of water.

I forgive you, I mouth.

She stares at me, uncomprehending. I repeat it desperately. This feeling is eating me up on the inside and I can't believe I am doing this. I forgive you, I mouth. I forgive you!

Something shifts in her gaze and tears spill down her cheeks and all of the sudden we're embracing. She's shaking and I am too. She's a lot smaller than I imagined, really frail, and really weak, but she's holding onto me tightly. My heart is pounding in my chest and tears flow from my eyes in twin streams. I forgive you, I repeat in my head. I forgive you.

Then we release and I'm trembling so hard I can barely stand. She looks at me with an expression I've never seen before.

I... I hope we can be friends again, she says.

A weak smile breaks out on my face before I know it and I nod.

And in her eyes as I find myself hoping to be true, I see Melissa Ryder forgive herself.
♠ ♠ ♠

I probably wouldn't have handled Melissa that way. I would've been all, "B*tch, yeah, you better leave." and then go cry in my room.

Can someone please romantically play an instrument against my back? I was thinking about my boyfriend and he plays bassoon and sousaphone, so maybe that's not going to happen...

Oh, I play flute, tenor saxophone, and baritone (the brass instrument). All the titles I've given chapters are music that I've played as I've grown up, from symphonic band, wind ensemble, jazz band, and Honor band. I didn't put any pep band tunes or marching band stuff because I didn't think of it until now. This chapter is the title of my friend Cory's ballad in jazz band. He was our lead alto and can play soprano saxophone too, and he played this piece on soprano. Simple rhythm for the backgrounds, but really harmonically advanced and it's difficult.

My Funny Valentine was my ballad I played on tenor. <3 I love that song.