He had practised obediently since he was tiny, but his performances remained wooden, formulaic. His father said his playing lacked soul.
His mother thought he was intimidated: “He’s afraid he won’t measure up to Alfred.” And his brother was extraordinary. He had the prizes to prove it.
Madame Baranovnika dreaded his weekly lessons. “Let go, Mikhail. Let your heart take you past the mechanics, into the music itself.” Still he held back. Madame was mystified.
But Mikhail heard other voices too, and resisted. Until he no longer could, and the music took him.
Now the music is all he hears.
This is for Friday Fictioneers, once again. Many thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for hosting and maintaining this weekly flash fiction link-up.