“Hey, Fisica, you want to know a secret?”
Fisica knew that it probably wasn’t anything worth her time. After all, the more time spent on useless tasks, the less time there was to save the world from an apocalyptic event that she wasn’t even completely sure would happen.
Yet, knowing this, she didn’t want to let her constant scientific droning get in the way of whatever Ritmo was insisting was important.
“Sure, I guess.”
“Okay, now, I’ve never told another living soul this…”
He panned is vision to the left, then to the right to be sure nobody else could hear.
“Why are you doing that? You & I are the only ones here.”
“Just… being sure. You never know who could be listening.”
“Ugh, just get on with it.”
“Fine, geez. Just, let me show you.”
“Looks like this is going to take longer than expected,” Fisica thought.
The pair finished their ratatouille & left Fisica’s lab, but their destination, only Ritmo knew the answer to that question, & for a short time, there was a nulling silence that only thickened the atmosphere. This made Fisica slightly uncomfortable, & she decided to break it.
“Where are we going anyway?”
Up ahead, the two came up to a river, the exact river not too far away from the front porch.
“What’s it like having this calm river so close to your lab?”
“Honestly, it’s the perfect place to… well… escape the world. A place where I can sit against a shady tree, & read a good book as the Sun eventually makes way for the night. In the time I’ve been here, it’s been a safe haven for me to escape my troubles, & just forget about how the world is at some impending doom of great, enigmatic proportions.”
“Well, then it’s good to have a place where none of those have to matter, & sometimes, all you need is a place where you can feel safe & acknowledge that it’s not all too bad.”
“Thank you, I feel as though you have some idea of how drastic the state of our world is.”
“Hey, it’s something you care about, & I would be an awful person to just ignore all that is wrong around me. I care about you, Fisica.”
Fisica blushed. It’s as if, for the first time, she was at her wits’ end. All she could do was stammer an ill-conceived response.
There was another bout of silence as they walked away from the river’s end, & although she wanted to say something, Fisica didn’t want to break the silence this time. It didn’t seem right.
Eventually, they made it to the nearby park, & although Ritmo would have usually forgotten what he was doing to spend a little time riding the swing, he didn’t this time. Instead, they walked right past it, & Fisica wasn’t completely sure that he was ignoring it until the park went into the horizon behind them.
“Huh? Is it really that important? Normally, he absolutely loses it at the sight of a distraction. This alleged “secret” must be largely significant.”
“Are you confused, Fisica? Well, what you’re about to see will blow your mind!”
“Oh, really?” Fisica said in a snarky tone. “Well, then, I’m ready to be blown away.”
In the distance, Fisica spotted the school, which wasn’t particularly an uncommon sight on the edge of the village.
“The school? What’s so “Mind-blowing” about the school?”
“Nothing yet, but you’ll see once we get inside.”
“Inside? The gates are locked.”
“True, but I know a secret entrance.”
At this, Fisica grew quite puzzled. She had only been to this school for a couple of years, & yet, she knew the place inside & out as well as a person who would’ve only known this place alone.
“Ritmo, how do you suppose we get inside?”
Ritmo pointed to the nearby shrubbery.
“You know that bush over there?”
“The Calluna? Yes, I do.”
“Well, there’s a small space underneath it. If you can crawl through, you’ll be on the other side of the school walls.”
“Okay, then. If you say so.”
Fisica got on all-fours & crawled under the plant, leaves & stems hitting her here & there, but after a few seconds, she looked up & saw the tall glass windows on the school building.
“Well, we’re inside. What did you want to show me?”
Ritmo grabbed her hand & ran with it, she struggled to keep up with is quick pace.
“Hey! Slow down!”
But it was futile, they dashed right through the front door, down the hallway, & straight into the auditorium. Up until then, emergency lights had lit up the campus, but this room was pitch black.
“It’s a bit dark in here, isn’t it?”
“For now, but with a flip of this switch here…”
In an instant, spotlights shone onto the stage, where the set for the recent school play was still set up.
“Now, just sit & watch what I’ve been so intent on showing you.”
Although Fisica wasn’t initially excited, she was now on the edge of her seat, just dying to see what Ritmo had in store for her.
“I can’t wait!”
Ritmo calmly walked to center stage holding his lute & looked out to his adoring fan.
“Fisica, thank you for sticking with me all this time. I know I can always count on you to understand.”
Fisica watched intently as Ritmo struck a smooth chord on his lute, & suddenly, he went into a crazed frenzy of strings while singing in a, rather excessively loud, tone.
“So, this is the “Big Secret?” A brash combination of mismatched chords & choppy lyrics? Actually… You know what? He placed enough trust in me to show, what I consider, an abomination, but that’s all that matters, that he placed his trust in me. It may not be a musical feat worthy of high recognition, but it’s, definitely, touching that he’d share it with me.”
After a few more minutes of sour notes & half-baked lyrics, he finally stopped. She looked up to see Ritmo, tired & out of breath.
“So, what did you think?”
After all Ritmo had gone through, just for her, she wasn’t going to dampen his spirits with a cold, scientific analysis of every parameter he could have improved. Fisica knew it wouldn’t have been right because of how he had put so much effort into preserving it.
“It was wonderful! A perfect concert to rock the starry night!”