"It's said that music knows no boundaries; music is imagination, music is freedom, music is passion.
I say music is love… but love can be tragic"
Silence is something you won't find in a room full of musicians, especially when they're teenagers and the scene in this particular rehearsal room was proof of that statement.
2:30 pm. The choir room of was full of young boys and girls from 15 to 22 years old. A group of them sat on the carpeted floor, singing the most popular songs and accompanied by acoustic guitars and drums while the others checked the bulletin board, read a book, used the big and spacious whiteboard to write down notes or hummed the notes of old Aria, Vocalize or Vaccai exercises. But not everything was music centered in this room.
Some girls checked their makeup in the mirrored walls while gossiping about the latest events; a couple of boys used the computers to check their mail and social accounts and some others had their noses buried in their cell phones, their thumbs flying over the small, rubbery keys.
Everyone was minding their own business until a tall, slim and serious woman around her forties came into the room.
"Silence, please," she said in a calm but still firm voice.
The woman was dressed in black from head to toe, her brown hair was tied up in a short pony tail and the lenses of her glasses were very thick and protected her penetrating gray eyes. The noisy crowd shut their mouths and emitted no sound as they went to sit in their respective places.
"Thank you, guys. Now… as you all already know, Halloween night is just a month away and we know what that means."
"PARTY TIME!" A voice came from behind and the whole crowd muffled their giggles at the young man's cheerful comment.
"Pretty funny, Mr. Johnson," the woman said, rolling her eyes. "What I was going to say is that our chorus and orchestra must prepare a musical for such an occasion, just like it's done for all holidays existent in the last 65 years."
"Mrs. Harris, we know already," a red head girl in jeans and green shirt replied. "There is no need to-"
"-yet you still haven't chosen a theme. Am I right, Miss Yoriksson?" Harris replied, giving the girl mild glare.
"Relax, Mrs. H! That's gonna be easy peasy!"
Harris turned her gaze to an African-American, honey eyed teen boy who went by the name Ted, lead voice of the bass section. He was dressed in beige baggy pants, dark glasses, a piano-print T-shirt, sneakers and leather wristbands on each wrist. The young man smiled brightly at the woman while he twirled his drumsticks skillfully between his fingers.
"So I must assume that you have picked a theme already, Mr. Johansen? Since you sound so confident," Harris said, walking towards the young man's seat.
"You bet! We got ourselves a theme so cool you gonna be more than impressed, ma'am!" Ted replied, earning the applause of a few comrades.
"Well then, I wish to know," the woman said, folding her arms. Johansen felt his confidence crumble and his blood turn to ice.
"Uh… k-know what?"
"Oh! Our theme!" Ted chuckled nervously. "Well, thing is… uh… you see… there's this…"
People in the room gave brief glances to each other and whispered but it was Harris' stern look that made them lower their gazes and close their mouths. Lucile Harris was the strictest pianist teacher and vocal coach known in New York City; everything she did was beyond perfect and she expected the best from her members. She also didn't tolerate liars, which was the reason she got divorced so quickly after 5 months of marriage with a Russian violinist who cheated on her. Now, they all knew Johansen had made a big mistake by lying to Harris and if he didn't think of something quick, she would make them all suffer the unimaginable.
"I'm waiting, Mr. Johansen," Harris said in a monotone voice, drumming her long, bony fingers on her arm.
"Well, we can't tell ya cuz it's gonna be a surprise!" Ted said with a wide smile. "Right, guys?"
The room filled with hesitant comments supporting their friend's statement and shy nods; Ted kept smiling, his confidence restored thanks to his partners. Harris arched a brow and unfolded her arms just to adjust her glasses.
"Hmm, I am eager to see the final results," she said, turning around and picking her bag. "I shall come back in three weeks to see what you have so far."
As Lucile walked towards the door, tension could be felt in the air. Angry eyes landed on Ted who grinned goofily and cracked bad jokes but stopped talking after noticing Deuce Gordon and Fiona Rossi's piercing glare.
Deuce was a turquoise-eyed, 24 year old tenor, tall with a muscular built body and dark hair with green highlights. He was the "eldest" of the team and in addition, everyone followed his command blindly. A rule that Ted had completely ignored.
Fiona, a 19 year old Italian soprano, average height with short, brown hair and chestnut eyes, was the second in command and voice of reason while her best friend Helga Yoriksson, a 20 year old Swedish alto, was the one with the explosive behavior and quick responses.
Ted knew that he was in big trouble when he felt the gazes of his three friends on him; he buried himself deeper in his seat, waiting for the yelling to begin. The wooden door slammed shut and made everyone jump in fear. Once she was gone, Johansen found himself surrounded.
"Good one, fåntratt!" Helga hissed. "Why you say that to Harris?!"
"Whoa, whoa! Hold it!" Ted rose from his seat, holding his hands up in a defensive pose. "I have no idea what you just called me but I'm having the slight impression you guys are angry at me."
"You don't say," a blue eyed guy from the crowd said sarcastically. "What did you expect us to do for what you said?! Throw you a party?!"
"That'd be nice, yes!" Ted chuckled.
"You messed up big time, Ted!" a brunette yelled from the crowd; a few more girls joined her throwing accusatory statements at the poor guy.
Johansen rubbed the back of his neck and blushed in embarrassment. "Ok, ok! Maybe I got a lil' carried away..."
"A LITTLE?!" everyone yelled in unison.
"Dude, you lied to Lucile Harris!" Deuce replied. "She's gonna kill us when she knows we don't have anything ready!"
"We not have theme…!" Helga added.
"Or a theater…" Fiona continued. "… or an orchestra director, theater director or choir director."
Ted smiled and patted his friends' backs. "Fellas, ya forgettin' this is Halloween we talking 'bout! And what's better than the most epic classic of all times?"
Deuce gave his friend a knowing look. "You mean…"
"Oh no! You not going to say what I think you going to say," Helga protested.
"My friends, we gonna be doing: 'The Phantom of the Opera'!"
People went from ticked off to excited after hearing Ted's idea. But it seemed that not everyone was happy about it.
"Have you gone galen?!" Helga asked "The Phantom's production means work, money and time! And we not have them!"
"I have to agree with Helga," Fiona seconded her friend. "We'll have to think of something else"
"You kiddin' me, right? Everybody loves The Phantom! We have nothing to lose!" Ted protested.
"But we have to be realistic, pal" Deuce replied. "We may be ready musically speaking but-"
"-we can sing at the Radio City Music Hall."
Everyone turned their attention to the voice in the hidden seat at farthest corner of the room.
The sound of high heels echoed in the place and intensified as the owner of the mystery voice approached to the crowd. Everyone in the room gasped once the figure came to the light; before their eyes was Frida Higgins, the most arrogant mezzo soprano they had ever met. Her devilish, tinted red hair played with the soft breeze of air, her green eyes sparkled evilly and her red lips curled in a smug grin.
"Vad är det slyna gör här?"
"Helga, show some respect!" Fiona reprimanded her. "Now, what did you just say, Frida?"
"I said… we can sing at the Radio City Music Hall," Frida said. "Dad's got a few contacts over there."
The mumbling and whispering began once again. Had Frida really said that or was this a very twisted dream or alternate reality where Frida was actually a lovely girl, eager to help her comrades?
"How come are you being so collaborative?" Deuce asked, arching a brow.
"Yeah, what's the catch?!" Ted seconded him.
Frida smiled as sweetly as she could. "No catch. And since you have no other options, I think you must take my offer. It'd be so foolish if you say no… don't you think?"
Helga and Ted shared a doubtful gaze with each other and the rest of the choir while Fiona approached their leader. "Deuce? What do you say?"
After a few moments of silence, Gordon finally spoke. "Huddle up"
The three teenagers did what he requested while the others praised Frida for her "generosity", hoping Deuce and the other lead voices accepted the deal.
"Guys, we all know Frida is up to something" Deuce started. "But-"
"-she could be our only hope, as weird as that sounds," Fiona finished the statement.
"I don't know, man" Ted argued. "That viper never plays fair."
"What else we can do? She is trying to fix mess you got us into," Helga replied. "I say: we take offer!"
"I am not getting any younger, guys. Decide already."
The group turned their attention to Frida who tapped her right foot impatiently; Deuce looked at his friends, none of them were happy with the final decision but it had to be done. Nodding once, he accepted the deal.
The rehearsal room cheered and clapped in excitement and joy while Higgins smiled widely, pleased with her triumph.
"But…" Deuce said, interrupting the celebrating crowd "…if something starts going fishy, you're out. Understood, Higgins?"
Frida mimicked a cross over her chest with her black gloved fingers. "Cross my heart and hope to die."
"Wish that second one would come true," Johansen whispered earning a hit on the head from Fiona.
"Ow! Just kiddin', don't get your panties in a bunch!"
"What about the choir director?" a guy asked.
"I call Mr. Danny Evans," Helga suggested.
"Crazy Evans is still alive?" a girl asked in surprised.
"Cool! With Crazy Danny on board, there ain't nothin' we can't do!" Ted said enthusiastically.
"Then it's settled! The Phantom's production is a go!" Fiona stated; people in the room high-fived and cheered loudly.
"Listen up!" Deuce yelled. "Call everyone you know who's been part of a choir, we're going to need a lot of people."
"Charlotte, you take care of costume design. Make Teresa and Vlad help you," Helga instructed.
"Chris, I want you to make sure all instruments are ready. Rehearsals start tomorrow." Fiona ordered.
"I'm not sure if I can convince the violin section to come, they're on vacation," the guy called Chris said with a worried expression on his face.
"Tell them Crazy Evans is going to be here," Ted said. "Trust me, they will not refuse after hearing that."
"Ted, you better pick the most capable basses you can find," Deuce commented. "I don't want amateurs in this production like what happened last year."
"Aye aye, Captain!" Johansen grinned, giving his friend a military salute.
"I'll try to get the theater director," Fiona said.
Deuce nodded in agreement. "Good; I'll go for the orchestra director. Oh by the way, are all the sopranos available?"
Deuce blinked. "Uh, gesundheit?"
"I think that's a no, dude," Ted said. "Cuz Operetta-girl, ain't here."
Fiona nodded. "Exactly."
"No, I was asking you… who?"
"She's talking about Whoey, man," Ted chuckled.
"Oh right," Deuce palm-heeled his face. "That nickname always confuses me."
"Come to think of it, Who's been gone for a month now," Fiona commented.
"WHAT! But why?!"
"I hear Harris say she was on vacation," Helga answered. "I call her tusen times but cell phone must be trasig because she never answers."
"Any other contacts, her parents maybe?" Deuce insisted.
Ted shrugged. "We don't know of any relatives; she's never mentioned them before."
"All the choir, except for Frida…" Fiona said "…and all the people in the orchestra but they know nothing."
Gordon ran both hands through his hair with a loud sigh. Just when things were going perfect, this had to happen.
"Now, where in the world could she be?"
Fåntratt: Imbecile, idiot.
Vad är det slyna gör här?: What's that b***h doing here?
A/N: Yes, Helga will actually have slight Swedish accent. Deal with it!
Like it? Want more?
Well, I've got news for you, my lovelies: THERE IS NO MORE! (For now~) Haha! I'm so mean!
I bet y'all saying: Girl's gone mad! August ain't over yet and Halloween is… like… 2 months away!
Yes, I know is hella early but… I have plans for this story and this lil' chapter needed to be posted right away.
By the way, I'll be writing this story with the help the most incredible human being I've ever met and have the honor to call: "best friend and sister for all eternity".
I'm talking about:
Saya, The Ninja Cat!
Thanks a bunch, my sister, for being my Beta Reader!If you guys have time, go read her stories. She's awesome!
Let me know what you think of this chapter/teaser thingy on the comment section below; only constructive and positive feedback will be allowed. Flamers will be used to… hmm… well I don't hate Nick anymore, at least not so much.
But I still hate M. Bay, though.
Alright, flamers will be used to burn M. Bay and the new series' Shredder… which makes me feel bad because I kinda like this new Shredder.
Ok, I better stop now.
Read, comment, fav, follow, thumbs up, like it… and all the rest.