A Compositional Error

I thought Anna would leave me alone after I did her concert, especially when I told her about what had happened with all of the journalists and the phone calls, but she didn't seem to mind about them. In fact, she was pleased. She was so used to having pupils that wanted to be performers, wanted to be known, wanted to be famous - she didn't know how to react when I told her that wasn't my thing at all.

"Surely you want people to know who you are?" she asked me, her voice pleading. I knew she'd be looking at me with huge eyes. Thing was, I didn't really know how big eyes were supposed to be, causing a few difficulties there. 

"Not really," I admitted. "I'd rather just be myself, at home, with my violin. I don't want to be anyone famous. I just want to be me." That seemed like the perfect existence for me. Even while we spoke I was fidgeting, my fingers tightly clasped around Elenora's smooth neck as I longed to begin playing. We never talked much in my lessons, though they were now forty-five minutes long instead of thirty.

"Well, I thought you'd like it if you were popular. You could accept the record deal, you know; all you'd have to do would be to go along to the recording studio, play for a few hours, then you'd get a CD and you could share that music with everybody! Wouldn't you like that?"

I shook my head. "My music is my own. It's not for other people." That sounded selfish but it was like baring my very soul. The music was everything that I was. To give it to other people would be like walking around in public with no clothes on: you just didn't want to do it, but couldn't quite say why. "Besides, I haven't finished these compositions."

"I need to talk to you about that, actually." Anna prised my violin from my fingers, taking her away and laying her on the sofa. I felt my fingers itch for the wood once more, but allowed her to lead me across the room to a soft sofa that inhabited one corner. So much time had I spent in that room that I now knew where everything was. "Listen to this."

Her fingers danced across keys - I could hear them. She was looking something up on her laptop, which sat on the brushed metal table. "What is it?" I asked.

"A piece of music. Tell me what you think it is."

The sound of a symphony orchestra filled the room. Although the orchestration was unfamiliar and sounded odd with so many instruments, I knew the melody better than I knew the back of my own hand - since of course, I couldn't see that. "Well, it's one of mine," I said, puzzled. "Who arranged it? Why didn't I know about this?"

"No, it's not," she replied, switching the song. From the speakers swelled another melody and I knew that one, too. "What do you think this is?"

"It's something I wrote when I first started. It's one of the dances. But I didn't write it for flute, I wrote it for violin and piano. Who arranged it for flute?" Worried and confused, I reached out for her hand. "Why are you playing these to me."

"You didn't write them," she said to me, her voice sad. "The first piece of music was by Mozart. This one is by Bach. I don't know if you've ever heard them before, but they were written hundreds of years ago. Yet they're identical to the 'compositions' that you've played to me, saying you wrote them yourself."

"I ... thought I did." I had no words. "I thought I did."  

The End

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