Under a starry night of the winter solstice, there is a distinct music playing in the air. Upon this penetrating cold, freezing every touched object, robbing them of warmth. Under the blanket of snow, i lie still staring at the sky as my eyesight fades away.
Upon my wake, I lie on my bed, and looked at the beige ceiling, blasted with orange sunlight of the dusk, there was that opened notebook, a page half filled with writing, sitting upon my desk, waiting to be written on. I reached my glasses just beside my notebook, and wore them then things became clearer.
After preparing like i just woke up in the morning, i slipped in to my clothes and i went out of my dorm room with my things and went upstairs.
After my class, I found my way rushing to the rooftop again, for some reason i find myself all night, staring afar to the horizon, and high above the sky, deeply enchanted by the stars as if i was frozen.
I never have any friends, all these people calling me "ace", they were just looking for someone to parasite with, but then who would be the best victim, then of course it's the smartest one, the top student, of course it was, and is me. If my parents gave me a choice, i would have not stayed here.
Upon my thoughts, it was broken by the same sound, the same music i hear all these years. Maybe it was IT, thus I find myself staying here all night.
I mustered all my courage and looked around, and after a while, i found where the sound was coming from. I went nearer, and i knew that the music was coming from the vent below, and tracing it to the room, I found out that it was coming from the old music room.
As i try to open the door, i struggled and later got angry on the process, i kicked the door and the music stopped. Suddenly the headmaster of my school found me, she was on her sleeping dress, she owned this school for a long time, over fifty years she lived and taught children here.
"Oh Mrs. McCaelum" I said, she caught me by surprise, "Adam, i know that you don't sleep much at night, but please be quiet" she said as she lessened the brightness of her flashlight. "um, what is behind this... Old music room?" i asked, "Old, and worn instruments... It was usable then but..." she said, but then something bothered her, and she left quietly.
When i was about to walk away, the door strangely unlocked itself, and i went inside, and then the door just closed and locked me inside, so did the windows, one by one they were shut.
I stood against the door terrified; i looked around and saw dusty and webbed old instruments. Strangely at the middle of the big room was an old piano, and i figured that it was making the sound. Apart from all these instruments, there was no dust, nor web around it, and to my surprise, it does not work.
I pressed the middle key again, and suddenly a finger made of faint light beside mine pressed the same key too, and the piano made a sound. At my reflex, i looked beside and saw a blurry ghost, so i fell backwards, i scared.
The piano moved by itself and regenerated, even it does not look new but it can play beutifully. The image bent down, so i pushed myself back, my glasses fell away, and to my surprise, i saw a beautiful girl in a dress, she was smiling at me, lending her hand to me. I took my glasses and stood up, but when i wore it, the girl was blurred too. She held my hand as to my hand held my glasses, she pulled my glasses away and i saw her clearly again.
"hi" i said, i was thinking of something else more elegant to say but I failed. I tried again, but i stuttered, unbelievably I just said my name: "a-a-a, Adam, my name is Adam". She giggled and answered with a very cute and mesmerizing voice, she swayed and her knee-length hair followed, "Anne Marie" she answered.
"so you play the piano?" i asked, to steer the question. She then sat and i sat with her beside the piano. "yes, every night." she said. "c-c-can you teach me?" I asked, she then held my hands and i played the piano with her.
After a while, i saw her smiling, and when she looked at me, she vanished in the air, as the room was lit by the dawn. I was crushed, and when i pressed the key of the piano, the sound was gone. I wore my glasses again and left the room.
I sat on my bed, unable to think about anything but her, i couldn't even fall asleep. As i lay on my bed, i closed my eyes but I could not fall asleep, all i see in my mind is her. I still remember her, she wears a divine white dress, it has a short frilly skirt but a long sleeve, a pair of small white high heeled gladiator shoes, she wears a white headband, on her very long and wavy hair, i believe it exceeds her waist. She has a beautiful violet eyes; dazzling, i can't stop staring at her.
After opening my eyes, I found myself waking at five o'clock. Luckily i have a free period, so i find myself rushing to the old music room. After i entered, i locked the door and i decided to wait for her. As I wait, I played the same pieces she taught me, even when the piano wouldn't create any sound, I just imagined it would.
Here it is, the final piece we played together, pity it was interrupted, maybe I’ll be lucky I’ll see her again. As I struck the final key, the piano miraculously created a sound. And I finally saw her again, on the same position she left.
"Welcome back" I said. "we've been here all these time, just playing the piano" she said as she gave a matching smile, until she took a good look at me. She noticed that I wasn’t wearing the same clothes, and the smile she wore all night yesterday was replaced with doubt and worry, as we continued with the lessons, the feeling is not the same as before.
After few pieces, she stopped playing and turned to me. "i never sought the sun come up, i would always play my piano all night long" she said to me as she held my hand. But then when she tightened her grip, she passed through me and she stood up in shock, and finally things came together.
"am I still alive?" she asked as she looked at her hands, she then took a step backwards and sat on the table. "why aren't you aware of this?" I asked, as I walked closer to her. "i don't know, all i remember is music, practically how to play the instruments and compositions" she said, she looked at me, with sadness that cripples and maims the strongest of men.
"what instruments you play?" I asked, to steer away the sad topic. "Oh, Oboe, Flute, Lute, Guitar, Bass Guitar, Piano, Violin and other f instruments, I even caught up to play the modern drum set and synthesizers" she answered with a smile.
"What is your birthday?" I asked, "august 21 1994" she answered, I was surprised because she was younger by four years from me. I just stood there watching her play.
Few months, it has been, I still find myself playing the piano, a night is empty when i don't hang out with her. Unfortunately, she does remember our specific chat, about her being a ghost. It comforts me that she accepts it, and actually smiles despite that.
"hey, isn't that ghost have ability to move things from afar? That means i can play the death waltz" she exclaimed, and as she said; she played the death waltz. "anyways... Is it alright for you that i won't be here for just a night?! Tomorrow actually" i asked, she then frowned and answered like the spunky girl she is; "why?"
"Promenade!" i said, i was worried and embarrassed, and to think i have no one to go out with. "even if no one could go with me, I’m required to attend." i said. "Promenade..." she said, followed by a laugh. "Do you know how to dance?" she asked, she wore those heart melting smile after. I meekly said "no", she then stood up and invited me to dance.
"Look, even if you haven't invited a girl with you... At least you should know how to dance because other girls may ask you to, at least do the waltz" she said. And then i followed her as she teaches me.
As i step with her, I can't believe i was slow dancing with her. "so, by any chance you're related to a living person?" I asked, she then hugged me instead, and whispered at my ear; "My grandma, "Minerva McCaelum" she said, and i was surprised. "She's still the principal, here..." i said, she then returned to our original position and proceeded with the dance, I was then dumbfounded when she smiled again. "Can you tell her this; 'starshine firesweep of the night sky, blind the beam with the dusk sillhouette light. Dreamweave the starry night and bring the time to stop, call the dawn with the firewoks flash, look the comets dash for I’m falling up!".
Again, I was dumbfounded, surprised and definitely amazed. I memorized the phrase, Like a the genius I’m. Sadly, there are only a few minutes before the sun rises, I bade goodbye. She gave me that mesmerizing smile, as she reminded me her request, and then the moment the sun shot out a beam, it went through her and she faded away. I then took my glasses to wear them, and i went back to my room.
The next night, I was early at the old music room, and as something to give, i went there with an oscillator and a synthesizer, something to bring her forward towards the future. I plugged in the synthesizer and the oscillator to an outlet, and i found her behind me, staring and smiling. "Hey Anne..." I greeted her as i removed my glasses, and she was clear again.
"oh, you brought a synthesizer and an oscillator, good. I'm actually a fan of Electronica, synthpop, and European trance, mostly European trance." she said as she approaches the synthesizer, the door then closed and all instruments were repaired as they usually do.
"Listen, can you make a list or record your voice saying what you said yesterday", i asked she then frowned, then smiled as sle looked down, she then looked at me and laughed. I then took a paper and a pencil from by bag, and then she wrote the phrases on the paper, with a beautiful penmanship too.
"Let’s get started" she said, and she began creating sample of sounds on the synthesizer, and then finally she played. I was amazed; she then mentioned that it was the song "Hold On" By Zircon sung by his wife Jillian Aversa.
As we continue practicing, playing the instruments, dancing, something crossed my mind, "isn't that spirits are usually tied to something earthly that they choose to stay?" i asked, she then looked and stared at the piano, "that piano i guess, i really loved that piano. It was a gift from my grandma, since my Stradivarius violin finally broke of age. The violin's sound was heavenly... I guess that is why it was sent there." she said, and she pulled a joke at the end.
I then looked at the piano, worried. "How do you died?" i asked, i then suddenly exclaimed; "oh sorry, that was tactless... “Said, as I stopped dancing, she then hugged me and pulled me back to dance. "It’s okay... Even I’m curious about you... I'll give you a deal, after i tell you how i died, you'll tell me about your life", she said, I then agreed.
"i died, simply by being crushed by my piano, that is why it's wrecked, i fact i even think it's because of that, i was tied to this piano." she said, i was then speechless. "okay, now your turn!" she said, as she called my attention. "no wait, I’m sorry, here it is; one day i was going to be sent away to another country, for what they claim a better school because my parents wanted me to be a business woman for it has the most salary, but i wanted to be a musician. I was so angry and so they were, and the anger was at grandma for not standing up for me, and the worst part is they are getting rid of the piano as a punishment, even sending it here, away from me. I blocked the men as they carried the piano but one slipped then the other so the piano was dropped over me so i died instantly... End of story now your turn!" she continued with an admirable and adorable spunky attitude I then began narrating.
"To be quick since we don't have all night. I was born, attended to elementary, and it sucked. At High school, I’m a salutatorian, despite the fact I’m lazy. "
"dude, that's it?" she asked, and then she laughed.
"okay, okay. At least my love story. Once on my freshman high-school life at Illuminata catholic university, I met this beautiful girl, I wasn't able to get her name, but i saw her every day. She couldn't notice me, so I decided to walk up to her and at least ask her name. But as I walk towards her, I slipped and fell. Everybody laughed, but instead she helped me up, hugged me. I couldn't react, I was speechless, and the worst part was I never saw her again."
"Oh that was me, you were the cute boy who walked up to me but fell instead. I waiting for you to speak up but you never did so I left." she said, and then she smiled. I was surprised, and now i knew her face, reminiscent image of the very same girl I had a crush.
"anyways, the prom is actually tomorrow, i hope it's okay with you..." i said, i placed my hand on her cheek. "I’ll sure miss you but okay..." she said, she then smiled after, comforting her.
This morning, i couldn't sleep, so i didn’t' bother trying. Instead, i remembered that i have a message to give to the principal from Anna, so i rushed at the principals office.
Surprised of my visit, she was quite puzzled. "Mrs. McCaelum" i greeted her, with the paaper with Anna's message, at my hand, i sat at the chair and looked at Mrs. McCaelum. Even then i saw Anna's childhood photos on the desk.
"is there something i can help you, Adam?" she asked after closing the book. "who is she?" iiasked to steer away the conversation, pointing at the photoes at the desk. "She is my deceased granddaughter; Anne Marie. She loved to play that piano at the old music room." she said.
I then gave her the parchment, and she was shocked to death, recognizing Anne's penmanship, and her style of literary writing.
"i don't know how you knew these but..." she said but i interruped.
"i met her, and she told me to give her this to you"
i then continued, "her spirit resides at that piano above, every night, all instruments at the music room will be fixed to perfect condition, and every night, i would play music together, she even taught me how to play the piano" i said.
"Impossible..." she said, as she faced down Anne's photo. She then snapped and laughed. "oh... I know what you're doing!... Yes, you are catching up on the april fools joke!...", she then laughed after. "Okay you got me..." she continued.
"Um... I don't joke... She talks to me... And i can prove it... But maybe the next night!" I asserted myself, her false smile was now gone and she sent me out. I then went to my room and wrote a note for Anna; "she didn't believed me... ", and I left it on the piano.
Prom night, I’m really bored. To top it all off, it was violent rave party, blasting speakers everywhere, beats so powerful that even my chest bumps ,epilepsy inducing light and lasers, I’d rather be at the music room, but sadly I was required to go here. I didn't even get to use all I learned dance from Anna. "Might as well go, this night sucks anyway, I’ll just go visit Anna", I said to myself as I left the prom, I then removed my necktie and untucked my polo on the way up.
On the stairs, I overheard a woman, it was Mrs. McCaelum, and she was calling Anna, my note was on her hand. Instead of greeting her, I hid and observed. She was getting tired of calling and standing, so she sat on the piano seat. She rested her arm and upon the piano, and on her surprise, it sounded, she fell on the floor as if she just survived a heart attack.
I rushed in and assisted her up and my glasses fell, she looked at me as if she saw a ghost, she was speechless and terrified. Behind her, I saw Anna, but even without my glasses to see her right, Mrs. McCaelum could not see her. She then left quietly, but in a hurry.
I heard her crying, like she regrets something, so I went and ran to go and bring Mrs. McCaelum back, but without my glasses, I tripped down the flight of stairs, and on the ground, as my eyesight fade, I can see Anna's face in front of me, crying, she held my hand.
A day after, I woke up in an empty room, not even my family came. I mustered my strength and sat down, and I decided to look through the window.
Suddenly I noticed a pickup truck, hauling every instruments, i then rushed down to stop it. As i reach the gate, the truck left, so I ran with every strength left in me. After a while, i reached the back end, but suddenly I opened it, and then the instruments fell from behind, even the piano.
Upon my wake, i saw the piano over lifted me, though i can't feel any pain, even when my bones pierced though my skin, out and exposed, my wound from yesterday opened. As i look up the beautiful blizzard of the blue sky, the gentle falling of the snow, to my face.
For the last time, I saw Anna over me, she was crying, then there is the driver and passenger including Mrs. McCaelum looking over me. After i returned my attention to Anna, she leaned towards me and kissed me, then finally everything went dark, as if i was falling to sleep, gently.
At Anna's home, a beautiful mansion, the piano was resting at her very own room, and there we are, ghosts that fell in love, and together we play the piano and we will spent an eternity, it never was about the music, it was about her, being with her for all eternity, and finally, I found my heaven, it's her. Her smile is so... liberating.
Ghost of a Chance
Original story by The6thMessenger
All Rights Reserved
Inspired by the song: Lonely Lullaby by Owl City
Cast; (Possible Actors):
Adam Young - Adam
Breanne Dǖren – Anna/Anne Marie McCaelum
Maggie Smith – Mr.s McCaelum