There's a certain melancholy note at his fingertips – the way a pianist leans over his piano after selling his soul to the music. The only difference is that he has already parted with it the very moment he stepped foot into this room and laid eyes on that grand piano.

Untucking his shirt, he undoes the last few buttons before scooting the piano's bench forward and relaxing into it. I see his hesitation as he stares at the black and white keys like the lightest feather could break them, but after another several moments, he lifts his right hand and places it on the keys. Pressing the middle C down, he takes in the resonating sound of the note before starting a melody.

His left hand joins in and he sucks in a breath, singing a low lullaby to the piano. I can hear how the years of his parting from music makes him stumble over a few keys, but when his voice pauses as his fingers find their place again, he opens his mouth to try once more. A shiver runs down my back.

His voice spills into the air like his heart is about to break, and I can only watch, listening to his melody with eyes wide as his remain closed.

It's a melody I will never remember as simple. It's a lulling tune that lifts me and carries me across the night sky. There are moments when his voice becomes so breathy and light that my eyelids flutter like that of a butterfly's wings, and moments when he breaks off, voice cracking as if he is about to cry.

I realize then that it's a confession. I realize that that breathiness is his nervousness and those breaking measures are the inevitable symptoms of rejection.

And yet, he plays.

And in my memories, he plays, forever weaving that lilting, melancholy tune behind my eyes as I sleep, spinning one dream after another.

~ e.h.

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