My friend Colleen was a member of the school orchestra and she planned to further her musical career the following year by enrolling at the Conservatory with the rest of the seniors. One day she took me at the local music store to purchase a violin, she said she’s buying it for me so I will also get musically inclined. I tried practicing with it but it just doesn’t peak any interest in me so I had it put away. We would eat out at times and she’d ask me about my violin to which I would tell her it just doesn’t work out for me. She was cool with it.
One day we both went to her university and she showed me their auditorium or as they call it the “Grand Hall”. She told me that one day I will be watching her performing center stage.
She was a child prodigy when it comes to violin playing, her parents were both music instructors in high school. During one of our lunches together she told me that they’re rehearsing for a performance to commemorate the founding of the university and that she’s been chosen as part of lead tier violin. We spent less time after that.
6 months later, I received a call from her asking to borrow my violin, yes , the one she bought for me earlier. I asked her “doesn’t the school provide for those?” but she simply insisted to borrow mine. I still haven’t got the chance to talk to her for several more months, whenever I call her at home her parents would tell me she’s gone practicing for the upcoming performance.
A few days later, she met with in person and was quite frustrated. She told me she feels she’d be bumped back as 4th tier violin. Now I never once doubted her skills but I found it strange how she came to feel this way or what made her feel this way. She never pondered further and we ended up practicing in her house. Again, she proved to be an exquisite violin player after the practice so I asked her why she thinks she’d be moved to the 4th tiers. She said first of all, the reason she had to borrow my violin is that every morning, upon arriving at auditorium, she’d find her violin missing and there are each player are given one, being a freshman she didn’t want the seniors to think she’s irresponsible.
I then decided to accompany and watch her perform solo in the Grand Hall and perhaps give her some moral support. It was 5 in the morning and we were the only ones in the school (at least it felt that way) upon entering, Colleen stared at the stage and sighed, dumbfounded I looked at the stage but found it empty except for two chairs in the middle. She walked up the stage and sat at the right chair. I can’t help but notice how she would look beside her as if she’s with somebody on stage. I did not delve any further into it and just sat myself in one of the folding padded seats in the audience. After watching her play, as I was about to ask why she kept glancing to her left, she asked what I thought of the performance. I replied in an effort to debunk whatever it is I felt by saying “Your performance was great!”
I felt myself turn ashen when she suddenly mentioned “what do you think of my violin partner?” I wanted to reiterate that she was the only one on stage but thankfully some students started to arrive. On our way home, as I was trying to shake the uneasy feeling I got from what she said earlier she said “that is why I felt I might get pushed back to 4th tier, i mean you saw how she played, right?”. Fearing the “other” violinist is a rather “unfriendly” entity, I decided to get Colleen to practice later in the day instead of mornings. Big mistake.
Now that Colleen’s been practicing at 12 in the afternoon, she told me she feel happy that she just might make it to top tier. Then on the day of the performance, as I took my seat and the lights were turned low, I noticed a rather tall woman seated at the front row, to my horror this woman turned slowly at me and revealed her pale face and smiled at me menacingly! That’s when I noticed I was alone in the auditorium and the woman stood up with her hand outstretched pointing at me, holding a violin in the other. I ran for dear life.
When I told my friend about my ordeal, she smiled and I suddenly realized she’s been staring at me. It wasn’t my friend anymore and I just ran out of her house without looking back.
My family moved out the following year to a different city. I never saw again.