The Last Dance

A SHORT STORY
BY LUKE EDWARD WORSTER

 

A soft morning sunbeam gleams through thin white cotton curtains, dust particles waltzing in the light. A pair of plain, dark blue slippers moves through the light, stepping precisely and methodically – musically. In a patch of sunlight, a wilting yellow flower, in a chipped blue vase, drops a petal.

The room is warm, but dimly lit, the curtains drawn close, despite the hour. The quiet house sighs with memory, an unfinished cadence waiting to resolve, the sound of footsteps a rhythmic break to the lilting melody of silence. In a cluttered lounge, an old man slowly waltzes, elegantly spinning around the room. A warm, half smile plays on the man’s lips, as memories of long forgotten years float by. The man gently twirls past an aging piano, overflowing with sheet music. He pauses, and turns to look at the piano, his face wrinkled in a soft frown. He stares at the piano, and almost moves towards the piano, but instead takes a firm step away. He again starts to dance, a quiet anger fuelling his movements. He glances often at the piano, as he dances slowly, deliberately – firmly. Gradually, he calms down, his movements becoming elegant and peaceful once more. He suddenly sits down at the piano, brushes yellowing sheet music away, and places his hands on the keys. He sits poised, as if about to play, but does not move. He closes his eyes as soft tears gently trickle down his face, a smile on his face.

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