Dim light trickled through the trees as the sun peeked from behind the clouds. rain glistened off the exotic plants that we potted outside the home. Beneath an umbrella is where we sat this day; Charlemagne and I. A peaceful day broken only by the light downfall of the chilly rain.
Charlemagne is a dear friend, sitting in his wheelchair with my bow. He is old and dying, much like the plants around us, yet just as beautiful. His graceful fingers wax my bow carefully and push his long, thinning grey hair back from his intense, sapphire eyes.
Years ago, when he was young, he had been handsome. He had a big heart for all he loved. He was a musician, a singer to boot. Not anymore though. 'Too old', he says. Now he simply writes. Songs and scores, maybe a sonnet or two.
His livelihood is his song, the gift of his music.
His tune starts clumsily and full, much like how we start life, living from day to day in blissful ignorance. Yet, not long after, his song turns melancholy as he sings of his love.
His first and only true love.
She has captured his heart when he was a boy and held it close. He forgot about her long ago, when he came back from war paralyzed from the waist down. She started to wither to dust before his eyes as the years wore on, writing of her was simply to keep her alive. His song started to rise, ringing of pride and joy.
His children went off to the city and joined groups, becoming popular, though he wasn't recognized as their creator. They have now inspired other children to go forth and create. Charlemagne was proud of his children and felt joy each time they visited.
Its has been three years since then.
The tone of the song turned sorrowful, and I felt water bend through me as the song flew from me and his tears began to fall, as silent as the rain around us.
He sang of the funeral. His comrades in battle. his bass and treble. How they had died in this home. One where he is forever alone. One where he is forgotten, as well as his friends and children, as well as his love.
The song drifted off on a soft note, holding for a while, just as he barely held on. Charlemagne breathes out, releasing all the pain and sorrow in his life. All the love and joy. The pride and grief.
Of all, the one he didn't lose was me. He placed my slender form back into the case worn from care. Placing my elegant bow beside me with the tender care of a lover.
Pulling out his faded thread bare cloth, he cleansed away our mixed tears. his touch rang tremors of how he loved me, how he loves me still.
I look in his eyes, even as the close, and for the last time i hear him speak.
"Take care Anne, sing our tune..."
With his final breath he sighed, breathing his life into my bow, even as his spirit flew through me.
As darkness enveloped my vision I spoke, for the first time, "Goodbye Charlemagne..."
Together with his memory I live on. Sitting upon this shelf in this old shop, passed by thousands with none stopping to hear my tale but you. The innocent child with wide sapphire eyes that sparkle even as you beg your mother for me. Funny, that is how Charlemagne came to own me as well. You remind me so much of him...
This short story is something that I came up with one night. It had been raining outside and we had a big patch just outside our door where I could see the starts... It looked to form a violin so I decided to write this. The name Charlemagne is one that is often found in history. I had been reading about him in a book that talked about the Montglane service, a chess set once said to be owned by Charlemagne that held the secret to immortality. It made me think, what would the chess set have said if it had a personality of its own? Well, I obviously didn't choose a chess set but something that is more personal to me, a violin. They are beautiful in their own right, much like how I imagine Charlemagne in this story. But then again, why not imagine what they look like for yourself?
I was delighted to read Anne's story. Please make more like this one.
Thank you! And I believe that I may, it depends really. This is the first time I tried something like this and I really only did it for a scholarship contest but I will try! Is there anything in particular that you would wish it to be? like an object or an animal?
Let's see, I haven't read much lit about animals but the theme of an object that tells its story sounds more interesting to me, especially when you don't know it's an object until the very end.