By Catherine LaCroix
In the second installment of The Silent Note, Tobias and Ara's love continues to grow through their shared adoration of music and each other. Tobias struggles to create the perfect song for Ara, seeking assistance from those closest to him. An unexpected source leads him in the right direction, and his composition for her transforms into more than just a sweet melody.
~~~~~ Excerpt ~~~~~
I knew I’d arrived to the clearing early, but I found it difficult to stifle my excitement. The few days without my evening visits I spent counting down the seconds until I’d see Ara again. Even so, I slept soundly those nights, something I hadn’t been afforded recently. My days spent with my father and grandfather seemed to move a little faster, and I tackled whatever faced me with my heart a little lighter.
The moon hid her face that evening, but the light of my lantern was plenty for me to see by. I lay out a blanket I’d brought over the soft grass and set up a few plates of foods for us to enjoy during our time together. Perhaps I’d overdone myself a little, snatching anything I could from our kitchens including a few bottles of ale. But Ara was special, and I wanted to create more evenings for her to remember. When I was pleased with my arrangements, I leaned back against the boulder that usually served as my seating place, and took my lute from its case. Strumming a few casual notes, I fell easily into a pleasant melody, experimenting with different rhythms and chords as I went.
Before I saw Ara, I heard her flute, matching perfect harmony and rhythm with my seemingly random tune. When she stepped into the clearing, she drifted into her own melody, still keeping in tune and pace with my playing. Within it I could feel her excitement and happiness, her passion and pleasure. Ara displaced her silence with music- her songs were her voice, and it was beautiful.
She danced the few steps from the edge of the thicket to my blanket, and knelt before me, holding one long, pure note before ending her piece- a clear sign for me to stop playing.
“Hello, Ara,” I greeted her, unable to mask my grin.
She gave me a tiny bow, her smile just as wide. Shifting to a cross-legged position, she gestured to my display of foods with a questioning look.
“I thought since we were out here for so long last time, we could do with a little something to eat.”
Lifting up her fist, she held her thumb and her forefinger a few inches apart before narrowing her eyes and cocking her head. A little?
“Alright, maybe it’s more than necessary, but we don’t need to eat all of it,” I laughed.
Keywords: romance, coming of age, renaissance, medieval, fantasy, drama, anthology