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The Unspeakable Event: Part 1
Miami, the band president, sat behind the director’s stand at the head of the classroom. The uproar of musicians separately warming up filled the room. She looked to her right. Her vice president and secretary, Phoenix and Levi, were nervously whispering. Levi looked agitated. She could sense that something was wrong; she thought they could too.
The principal made an announcement that morning telling all students to leave the library and all available teachers to meet there immediately. Something in his voice told Mia there was a problem. Where’s Mister Brown? She thought angrily. The Christmas Parade was in three days! She was only a high school senior! She couldn’t get the entire band in marching order by then. What was he doing missing class like this!
Miami shook herself, tapping the stand with the director’s baton. “Guys, come on! Get in your seats; we’ve got work to do!” A silence slowly settled over the room as the students looked to Miami for direction. She felt the comfortable weight of responsibility as Levi and Phoenix approached.
Lilly, a petite blond bass clarinet player, broke the silence. They lived in a small town in southern Tennessee, but her southern drawl was considerably thin until she was upset.
“Hey Mia, where’s Mister Brown and who’s the sub?” She asked quickly.
Miami shook her head. “Not sure. When I find out I’ll let you know. Miss Sally’s the sub though. She’s in the bathroom; I wanna get started before she gets back.” She opened the role book.
Lilly nodded. Her face suddenly grew serious, her eyes large. “Have you heard the rumors? Are they true?”
Paul, a sandy brown haired boy in Mia’s grade, watched Lilly intently as he adjusted his saxophone. “What have you heard?” Mia knew he could tell something was wrong, all the seniors could.
Phoenix spoke aloud for the first time, her southern twang strong and confident. “Let’s not put another log on the fire.”
“Hey, Mia . . .” Levi let his sentence fall as she looked at him. She could see the anger in his eyes.
Phoenix ran a hand through her dark brown hair. “We need to talk.”
Miami nodded. She looked to the first chair clarinet player as she spoke. “Sam, start warm-ups for me? We’ll be in the uniform room if they give you a hard time. Guys, let’s leave the rumors out in the hall. You know they’re never true. That’s why they’re called rumors. Just do what Sam says, and try to behave.”
The blonde boy from her grade stood and took the baton from her as she passed him, following Levi and Phoenix into the room on the left.
She looked at the jacket bags, their blue jackets nicely protected, hanging neatly against one wall. Hat boxes lined every inch of shelf the room contained. A red tie and a pair of white spats hung over the back of an otherwise empty chair. In her mixed thoughts of the day’s events, Mia wasn’t even slightly annoyed at the incomplete stowing of the band uniform.
Phoenix quickly shut the door as Levi spoke. “Miami, what’s going on? Have you heard the rumors going around? I’ve heard a ton. Are any true?”
“Oh, that’s smart.” Phee scoffed. “Gossip’s not the greatest source of info Levi, but Chris told me that Kelly sent him a text that said that her mother told her…” She paused not wanting to say it out loud. She leaned over and whispered in Levi’s ear. Mia watched as Levi gasped and Phee leaned toward her. She wished she didn’t already know what Phee was about to whisper.
Mia sat up straight, biting the inside of her lip. “I’ve heard that too. Oh and the office people actually pulled me into the hall, while Lex and I were working with the eighth graders, to say that Mister Brown wasn’t coming in. By the time the eighth graders left we’d heard about twelve rumors from the glee club members that were coming in and out of here. Before fourth period, we went to the office to see what was going on. They wouldn’t say anything until Officer Dan got there. He said that something grave” she used her fingers to put air quotes around the word “had happened and we’re gonna get a sub for the rest of the semester.”
“We have a Christmas concert in less than two weeks! He knows how important this band is to us! This is the last straw! Everything else I can deal with, but this?” Even though Levi fought to keep his voice under control, Mia could hear the angry thread that weaved through his words. His voice softened. “What are we gonna do?” He looked to her.
Phoenix ran a hand through her hair. “What are we gonna tell the band?”
For more read Part 2.
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