Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Music coming through the floor

"You're fucking crazy." Apparently the news had not been entirely pleasant. My lets-tell-no-lies policy had backfired predictably. "Why would you even consider such an idea? It makes no sense." she asked. I paused for a moment: "I don't think anybody's going to get hurt, and besides, it'll make for a good story someday". I could tell my cheap attempt at persuading her had been futile. "Like I said, you're fucking crazy and I want no part in this." "Fine" I said.

I tried to get some sleep because I knew I'd have to plan everything out in the morning. She, as always, insisted on playing a record at low volume while I attempted to sleep. When I asked her to turn it off, she simply replied "This is very soothing music and I happen to know that sleeping without music is like not sleeping at all." I was in no position to argue with her so I let it go. She was still very angry with me and I knew better than to make the situation any worse.

Two days later I awoke with a dreadful feeling knowing that even though it was not my desire, I would inadvertently make her suffer. I broke free of her grip in the bed we shared and silently walked over to the window to smoke a cigarette. It was a cold November morning and the sky had a pale grey tone. I knew in my heart that what I was about to do was something I needed to do, so there was no turning back. I forced myself to look over my shoulder in order to catch a glimpse of her as she slept, but she too had gotten out of bed without making a sound. It was as though she'd never been there to begin with. As I took the last drag off my cigarette, I couldn't help but feel that things were about to change. Later that morning- with my eyes to the ground and with a heavy heart, I left.

I returned six days later to our apartment and found it empty. She wasn't home so I assumed she was out buying groceries or something of the sort. I had not even put my bags down when I heard the phone ring. I answered it and I heard her voice on the other end; it seemed cold and disconnected. She asked if I had something to say to her. "It's done" I said. "And?" she replied. "Well....I have a good story to tell". I started laughing nervously and then I heard her hang up. I didn't know it at the time, but this was to be the last time we'd ever speak.

That night I could not fall asleep no matter how hard I tried. I couldn't escape the thought that I'd ruined everything; and for what? There didn't seem to be anything to justify my actions. The cold was beginning to make me shiver and that's when I heard it: Music coming through the floor. My neighbor from downstairs was playing a record at this late hour, but I couldn't help but feel that the music was playing just for me.

So that night I slept on the floor with my ear pressed against it, because as you know, sleeping without music is like not sleeping at all.

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