You Hear the Sound First ((Open))

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You Hear the Sound First ((Open))

Post  Anaeira Noonan on Mon Jun 20, 2011 7:43 am

It was hard to think of anywhere else to be but the music room, where it was just Ara and the instruments. But nothing was more important to her at that moment than the violin that was rested on her shoulder, held down by her chin, and held up by her hand. Her right hand held the bow like it belonged that way, like there was no other position that it could feel natural in. With her eyes closed, she moved her hand and once the first note was in the air, she moved her body as well.

As a child, she was instructed to always remain in her chair while playing the violin so she could have a steady hand, but as she grew with the music, she found herself preferring to remain standing. She kept her whole body loose, her mind only on the different creations of sound. She always called it a sixth sense, but some tutor had politely explained it to her that she just had a knack for hearing sounds and that was why she was so accustomed to the instruments. At the moment, though, the music was more than just sound; it was her feelings being poured out. In a way, she was wearing her heart on a sleeve.

A deep, low note began what would be the recounting of her time there. It was her entrance into the academy, dark and confusing. She only knew that it was a school for the performing arts but besides that, all was lost on her. But the notes picked up, detailing her find of the music rooms, her fingers running over the different instruments and their sounds. She had only dared to play a few, but the sound that emitted from each was so real and so different that it made her heart skip.

And then the bow was moving quickly across the violin, her fear of what was to happen so evident in the room. There was the announcement and the panic and then more sway of emotions. It didn’t sound right; it didn’t feel right. It was as if the whole atmosphere of the school changed, and it frightened Ara. This was supposed to only be a performing arts school, a school where she could refine her technique in music so that one day, she could be a proud musician, even one like her mother. She would just be wiser in her decision to not conceive a child. But now…it just didn’t feel like a performing arts school; it felt like more.

There was supposed to be training, some of which Ara had as a young child due to her military father, but it was never what she expected. She was never expected to have to fight in a life or death situation. And as her fear and distraught increased, her fingers flew faster and faster and faster—

Something stopped her. Her bow was off the strings as for the first time during the whole session she opened her eyes. She didn’t recognize the person, catching her even more off-guard. And that was enough to stop her musical energy from flowing. She always depended on having these sessions as private, a time when no one could judge her. This wasn’t like any other performance where she had to strive to do her best; this was the performance where she played whatever her heart was saying. But that wouldn’t do, not if someone else was going to be watching.

“May I help you?”
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Re: You Hear the Sound First ((Open))

Post  Chance Dunway on Mon Jun 20, 2011 5:18 pm

After the fiasco earlier when Chance had shown up to the school, he was glad someone had directed him toward the music rooms. He had nodded at the student, and taken off his shades. His hood was still up, but he was fine with that. His custom pink Fender Standard Precision Bass was strapped to his back, safely tucked away in its case. That bass was his life. Rosewood fretboard, 3-ply parchment, it was the most expensive thing Chance owned. He hung his shades on the collar of his shirt, walking down the hallway of the music block. He went looking for an empty room to practice in, but heard music emanating from one of the rooms.

A girl was standing, a violin in her grasp. Her eyes were closed, and her bow was flying in a panic. The sound coming from the violin was strange, violent, terrifying. It felt wrong to Chance, but he didn’t say anything. He just stood in the doorway, arms crossed, leaning against the frame. The frantic music continued for a moment, and Chance closed his eyes. It reminded him of a piece he had heard when he was little. He wasn’t sure of the name, but he could picture it so well. Death sat in a graveyard Halloween night, his fiddle in hand. He began to play, summoning skeletons, demons and ghosts for a night full of fun and revelry. But all too soon, the music stopped as the sun arose, marking November first, All Hallow’s Day.

Chance opened his eyes, realizing the music really had stopped. “May I help you?”

Chance shook his head. “Oh, don’t mind me. That was a beautiful piece, and I think I’ve got something you might like.” Chance said, walking into the room. He found an amp, and sat on it, taking out his fender. He plugged it in, and started to strum out Stravinsky’s “Firebird”, which, mind you, sounded off on the bass, but it was one of Chance’s favorite pieces, next to March of the Pink Elephants and A Night on Bald Mountain. Disney movies were Chance’s favorite, and that just kinda stuck with him. The piece itself was about life, death, and rebirth, which Chance thought fit his life quite well right now. “What do you think?”
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Re: You Hear the Sound First ((Open))

Post  Anaeira Noonan on Mon Jun 20, 2011 7:30 pm

“It wasn’t meant for others' ears.” Ara knew she should have responded better to the comment, especially since the boy had said that it was a “beautiful piece”, but she was still trying to get over the fact that she had been, in a sense, violated. At home, wherever it was at the time, she was able to practice on her own time, in her own space. Her father was always busy working and never even remotely bothered her while she was in her practice room. To have someone else just come in was new, and Ara wasn’t so sure she liked it.

Her eyes narrowed as the boy walked into the room and pulled out a bass, an instrument Ara never really cared for. She always preferred traditional instruments, instruments that created their own sound without the help of an amplifier. However, the boy had the guts to play Stravinsky’s “Firebird” on bass, and she had to give him credit for that. It really was a beautiful piece, one that would have sounded much, much better if played by an orchestra. Some of the notes were off, but the piece had its own voice and it started speaking on its own.

She looked up at the boy, shaking her head in amusement. He was quite the character, she was sure of that. “It’s a lovely piece. Though, to be honest, I have never heard it being played on a bass.” Ara brought the violin back into position, as she tried to play a few notes on her own, cringing at how alone the sound was. With a fervent shake of the head, she brought it back down. “I don’t think it’s much of a song for just one instrument, though. Its power comes from the voice of many…”

Laughing to herself, she looked up at the boy and reached out her hand, transferring her bow to her left hand before doing so. “I’m Anaeira, but I go by Ara. And I think it’s pretty obvious what my focus of study is here,” she added, raising her violin just a bit. She gestured with her head at the bass. “It’s a very nice instrument, very well-made. I’m sure great sound with an amplifier. However, why pink?” A smile crept up just as she asked the question. She had rarely seen any pink basses around, and as a girl, she was sure she would never pick an instrument that wasn’t naturally colored.

Finally, she considered a proposition, she herself was unsure about. She had been meaning to find someone who was just as interested as music as she was, and there were plenty but their type of music was different. They wanted to be the best by following the textbook; Ara wanted to be the best by playing by her own book. And it seemed like the boy was on a similar path. He still needed work, it was not difficult to hear that, but the way he played a piece not originally written for bass was a pretty good start. “How would you like to play a duet? A traditional instrument and a modern instrument would make an interesting combination.”
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Re: You Hear the Sound First ((Open))

Post  Chance Dunway on Mon Jun 20, 2011 10:12 pm

“It wasn’t meant for others' ears.” the girl explained when Chance told her he liked her piece. “Yeah, sorry about that. I just got here, and well, when I heard you play, I just had to find out who was making that wonderful music.”

After he had finished “Firebird”, he could feel her looking at him, shaking her head. Chance looked up, a “What?” expression on his face. Then he realized that she couldn’t see his face. All the better, though, he thought to himself. She probably wouldn’t have stuck around so long if she knew who he was. “It’s a lovely piece. Though, to be honest, I have never heard it being played on a bass.” She brought her violin back up, and started to play, but soon stopped. “I don’t think it’s much of a song for just one instrument, though. Its power comes from the voice of many…”

Chance nodded. “‘Sides,” he quipped, adding a smile to his voice, because she couldn’t see his, “My instrument is more meant for this.” Chance pulled a pick out of his pocket, his finger didn’t need to be anymore blistered than they already were, and started to strum the opening chords to Avril Lavigne’s “Girlfriend,” and Chance started to sing along. “In a second, you’ll be wrapped around my finger/’cause I can, ‘cause I can do it better/there’s no other/so when’s it gonna sink in?/She’s so stupid/What the hell were you thinkin’?”

“I’m Anaeira, but I go by Ara. And I think it’s pretty obvious what my focus of study is here,” she added, raising her violin just a bit. She gestured with her head at the bass. “It’s a very nice instrument, very well-made. I’m sure great sound with an amplifier. However, why pink?” Chance took her hand, moving his pick to his mouth, clenching in his teeth. He shook Ara’s hand. “I’m Chance, but you can call me Chance. And I’m here for the same thing. And as for why it’s pink? It faded.” Chance let go of Ara’s hand, and flipped the bass over, exposing the red on the back. “I bought it red, but overuse and exposure to the sun made it fade to pink.”

“How would you like to play a duet? A traditional instrument and a modern instrument would make an interesting combination.” Chance kept his fingers busy by playing a few random chords. “Sure. You got something in mind? Or we just gonna wing it?”
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Re: You Hear the Sound First ((Open))

Post  Anaeira Noonan on Tue Jun 21, 2011 8:13 am

((Sorry for the short post. It's late right now.))

“Sides.” Wait what? Ara did a double-take as she realized that the boy must have been trying to finish her sentence for her, but unfortunately, it just wasn’t the word she was looking for. In fact, she hadn’t been looking for a word at all, but it was rather amusing that the boy had answered as if it needed to be complete. Not that it wasn’t already but—Ara was fighting her own losing battle as she tried to figure out how to interpret his blurt out. “Sure…,” she said, a bemused expression on her face. She couldn’t clearly see what his face was like, due the hood that covered it.

Before she could continue, he then proceeded to play a modern song, one that Ara knew only because of its popularity. Of course, she didn’t like the song, but it was tolerable when played moderately. It was a good thing Italy had already moved on in terms of music, and thus she had not experienced the song in quite a while. However, she was taken aback by the fact that he started singing the song. From what she remembered, that song was about a girl…who was telling the boy that his girlfriend wasn’t the right one. And here was a boy singing it.

When the boy introduced himself as Chance, he also threw in a little play on her introduction. “Oh how funny you are, Chance. That’s a pretty odd name, though, not one I’ve heard many times.” And Ara had had her encounters with many strange names. The only difference was that they were more traditional and thus more understandable for Ara. Chance, though…that was a difficult one to grasp. After Chance showed how the bass had faded over time, he then proceeded to lazily play some chords.

Chance offered her the option to pick a piece or to just wing it as they went. While Ara loved playing music as she just happened upon it, she always reserved that time for just herself, when the audience was only her. So she shrugged and lied. “You can pick whatever you want. I will go along with whatever decision you make.” As if to show that she meant what she said, she placed the violin back on her shoulder and her eyes looked back at Chance. “So, what’s it going to be?”
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Re: You Hear the Sound First ((Open))

Post  Chance Dunway on Tue Jul 26, 2011 5:34 pm

“Oh how funny you are, Chance. That’s a pretty odd name, though, not one I’ve heard many times.” Chance let out a soft chuckle, thinking about his choice. “You can pick whatever you want. I will go along with whatever decision you make.” Chance hated making decisions. “So, what’s it going to be?”

Chance silently started weighing the pros and cons. If he picked a song, there was the chance that Ara wouldn’t know it. So, it seemed the best option was just to play, to see where that took them. Chance made his fingers stop for a beat, so he could start fresh. Slowly, he played a deep, steady cord, to start off. Chance closed his eyes, picturing a vast desert. Each strum on the bass sent a vibration through the desert, like there was something just beneath the surface waiting to burst through. Suddenly, the chord went an octave higher, lush vegetation exploding over the desert. Trees, plants, vines. They were everywhere. The beat became more playful, causing monkeys to swing from branch to branch. The uptempo caused them to dance, and not make public menaces of themselves, as monkeys normally would. Of course, they were not real monkeys, and could grow rabbit ears if Chance wanted them to.

But that wasn’t the point. Somewhere, in the heart of the jungle, a lion was stalking its prey. The music had become slow and ominous, signifying that there was something lurking just beyond your sight. Subconsciously, Chance almost began playing the score from Alfred Hitchcock’s “Psycho”, but he knew that would be silly, and would change what he was seeing, entirely. Slowly, the lion circled the gazelle, who was unaware of the its impending doom. One quick, resounding note, and the lion had given chase. The music was now frantic, the gazelle trying to escape the lion, the lion trying to capture the gazelle. They darted all through the savannah, past giraffes, past elephants. The music got quicker, and quicker until finally, it stopped. One low note symbolized the lion’s victorious roar.

Chance hadn’t noticed his hood had fallen down, and so when he looked up his face was exposed to Ara.
((Oh god the shortness.))
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