The third chapter of Uncharted Stars.
This chapter is rather short, but it’s quite an important chapter that will set the stage for where this novel will be heading. This chapter will pull the novel out of the slow start that it’s been having; Pete is finally going to be shown the first step out of the introverted world he’s created for himself. I hope you enjoy it!
UNCHARTED STARS- CHAPTER 3
The rest of the day continued rather uneventfully. I went through the rest of my classes like I normally would do: sitting there, paying attention but not interacting with anyone, then I quickly packed my stuff from my locker and went home. I did not enjoy unnecessary interaction. On that day I did not avid the unnecessary interaction though. Will, the guy who I’d mentioned earlier about being my closest friend despite the fact that he himself was quite a popular guy, caught up with me.
“Hey Pete. What did Mr David say today?” he asked.
“Nothing much. Just how I need to be able to do better presentations. That I can’t let my past control my future.”
Will shrugged. “People have their phobias. Not an easy thing to get rid of.” Our conversation descended into an awkward silence, which I tended to have with a lot of people when talking to them. Will tried to continue it. “I do like it that you’re quiet though. Quiet people keeps me sane.” I chuckled. We walked on together for a couple of blocks, until Will went on another road and we waved goodbye. I walked back to my uncle’s apartment. When I entered the room, I quickly washed my face, unpacked my bag, and jumped on a seat to play the piano.
I do like playing the piano. In fact, I would say that it’s the only hobby that I truly enjoy, apart from sleeping; it’s just that most people wouldn’t really consider sleeping as a hobby. Anyway, I make sure that I do get some time to play the piano every day.
Playing the piano requires both skill and practice. It’s not something that you can learn in a day or two. In fact, I’ve learned the piano for eight years, but I quitted recently because my teacher felt like I’d already surpassed a level that required continued instruction. My aunt and uncle both say that I play beautifully, but forever I shall confine the loveliness of my music.
Because I’m never ever going to play on stage.
Playing the piano also requires concentration. For example, when I sat down that day, I shut away all my negative thoughts, including my irritation about Mr David. I looked at the notes and started playing. It’s like magic to me, sometimes; how I can look at notes and immediately the information is transferred from my sight into my brains that then send signals to the finger about what notes to play. And the result you get is a beautiful melody, one that soothes the soul, one that keeps you calm. That’s why I play the piano every day. It helps maintain my level of sanity.
I play the piano, regardless of my emotions that day. And all of this is, in fact, a description of a regular day of the life of Pete.
Before it all changed, of course. And it was about to all change starting the very next day.
* * * * *
I woke up the next day and went through my normal routine. I had no idea about what was about to come, and it wasn’t like Mr David did anything that would make me suspect. He just kept typing away at his computer, so I didn’t have reason to think that anything would be different on that day than normal. I went through my normal schedule and kept myself from talking to people.
That was until break time, when the principal, Mr Nicholas, came in and asked me to go to see him in his office. As was customary for any student, as I followed him into the office I started going through a list of possible crimes I could have committed to have warranted me having to talk to the principal. There were none that I could think of, and I had never been called to the office before, so I just sat there as Mr Nicholas took a long drink of coffee. (Damn, I hate that. I hate it when teacher smell like coffee). I tried not to breath as he started talking.
“You do know that we started asking for candidates for Student Council President about two weeks ago.” He said. The smell was certainly quite strong. God, why was coffee even invented? I just nodded.
“There have been no candidates at this point.” Mr Nicholas continued. “No one has applied. The Student Council this year is also quite small, with only about twenty people. None of them have expressed an interest in being President or Vice President.”
I was becoming confused at this point, because I didn’t understand where Mr Nicholas was heading. Why would he have to tell me about this? Did he want me to help raise awareness about this?
“We had a teacher meeting this morning, and one of the topics we discussed were possible candidates for the position. A teacher has put you forward as a good candidate, and so I’d like to know if you’d be interested in being Student Council President this year.”
I was drinking water from my water bottle at that point and I nearly choked. Me? As President? Was Mr Nicholas insane?
“Mr Nicholas…” I started. I cleanly forget about his coffee smell. I was too shocked to notice it anymore.
“The teacher had also told me that you’d refuse. But I’d like you to go back and think over this. Here’s a list of Student Council members this year.” Mr Nicholas handed me a piece of paper. I quickly scanned through the list, and a few names stood out; Jinny’s, for example.
“I do understand that you don’t like being very…public.” Mr Nicholas said. “But this is a really good opportunity, Pete. You’re going to get to be President for a year without having to go through any election process, which I think would have really put you off. So have a good think.” I nodded.
“Thank you Mr Nicholas. When do I inform you about my choice?”
“Try to be as quick as possible. Maybe Friday.” he said.
“Okay. Thank you.” I said and quickly left the room. My mind was truly puzzled. Everyone knew that I was probably one of the least known people in the school. How was I a good fit for the very public role of Student Council President? It must’ve been Mr David who’d suggested me, trying to get me out of the shade and shine the spotlight on me.
That ruined my day, that little meeting with the principal.