Sunday, July 10, 2016

Sayonara Piano Sonata Volume 01

Chapter 1

The Department Store at the Ends of the World

With the windows of the train pushed up by just about five centimeters, the smell of the sea was already drifting in slowly.

It was a Sunday afternoon, and there were no other passengers aboard other than me. There will be a lot of visitors heading down to the beach once it hits the summer holidays. But for now, which was early April, there was still quite some time to go before the beaches were available. Therefore, middle school students might be the only ones who would be taking a trip to the beach during spring break...... which included me.

The double-carriage train rumbled past a gentle turn. The walls of mountains and bamboo forests suddenly disappeared before my eyes, and my line of vision broadened, along with the increasing smell of the sea. The clusters of rooftops and the copper-rust colored sea were darkened under the gloomy sky.

The train wobbled and stopped at a small station.

I grabbed my backpack from the luggage rack. As I walked onto the open platform, I could immediately see a grey band between the dark green mountains on my right.

I have no idea when it all started, but the valley has turned into a huge dumping ground. I don't know if the dumping ground is legal or not but, there are plenty of trucks from all over the place that come here to dispose broken electric appliances or furniture. As time goes by, that place became strangely silent. It was so quiet, it felt as though it was fifteen minutes after the apocalypse of the world - an enclosed space was thus formed. The middle school which I studied at is located close to the beach,
and ever since I stumbled here by accident after being lost one day, I have secretly named this place <The Department Store of Hearts' Desires>. That name appears in a certain novel, and even though it is long and mouthy, it doesn't matter since I don't plan to tell anyone about it.

My father has a weird occupation as a music critic (though that is really rude towards other critics, but I just want to emphasize how uncommon my father's job is to me), and due to that my house is filled with all sorts of sound systems, records, CDs, musical scores and other related items. My mother left the house about ten years ago as she couldn't take any of it much longer. As for me, though I had no plans or inspirations back then, I swore to myself the night when I became six, that I will never be a music critic.

Let's put all that aside for the moment. The equipment in our house are tools of the trade, and yet my father handles them carelessly. He breaks everything - be it the speakers, the turntable or the DVD player. Since there weren't many people who bought toys for me when I was young, I resorted to dismantling the broken equipment, and slowly learned how to repair and assemble them. As of now, it's sort of like a half-hobby to me.


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