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Tonally Rational

Novel By: jelloakasire
Young adult

Ever since the first heartbreak in grade seven, Yim has learned to stay hard at the core and think rationally. Music has helped rein her stray feelings back on track. But in her junior year of high school, she is at war with herself over whether it is okay to let herself love again.
Follow along with the music: http://grooveshark.com/#!/playlist/Tonally+Rational/97067144 View table of contents...


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Submitted:Apr 6, 2014    Reads: 46    Comments: 2    Likes: 2   


Urrrgh! Screw this hair, it is never straight.

I press my tresses down but it curls back up. The hot irons didn't have a lasting effect. Mother. I hoped to dampen the ends so that they may flatten smoothly. Sighs. Not only does it not work, it stuck my hair together. Just give up already. At least my bangs are obedient. But don't forget the chap stick.

You never know when the time will come..

In the reflection of the curtained window, I watch him. Study him. He is sure to make it into the U13 soccer team. One of his best friends tackle. They struggle, then tumble over one another. It concerns me for a second but he rolls over laughing - how adorable! I almost died when he asked to borrow my book the other day.

But then I discover that the time will never come with him.

"He likes Kate!" one of my friends whispers loudly.

Oh, phra jao.

"What, what?"

"We found out in maths class and someone asked him if he likes Kate. He didn't say anything but he didn't deny!"

"Kate was smiling too!"


It strikes me hard, but I feign interest in the gossip. Of course he likes Kate, everyone likes a farang mix. I bite my lip to stop it from trembling. Thank God I never confided my secrets to anyone. A shadow of the figure I memorized so well dances in the reflection of the window. He is more distant than ever.


The bell no longer brings me closer to him by putting us in the same classroom. He sits across the room with his short blunt pencil and abused wrinkly homework. One hand twirling the pencil and the other on the patch on his knee.

While I used to spend my classes studying him, I now despair at the flunked love-test. If I did not hesitate so much and approached him earlier, started the first step, then he might have held off his feelings for a little longer.. Arrrgh, we are not even close enough to be called "friends", just classmates.

Oh no, concentrate. Igneous rock. Sedimental rock. Metamorphic rock. He loves Bodyslam, his favourite rock band. Gahhh, not that rock! Uhhh.. a cycle? We once did a water cycle poster together. Ugh, think rock cycle. Before I know it, the class is already at five minute break. I flop over the desk to nap.

"Yim, are you okay?" the teacher asks. I nod.

Actually, it is NOT OKAY! If anything, I want someone to know about my misery. Yes, I am craving for sympathy. I think back to the first time we met, the first time he said my name, the first time I made him laugh.. No, stop. I am going to cry. Hold my breath. One, two, three, four..

But still, I don't tell anyone. I never do, and never did tell things to anyone. Not my friends, family, and well I don't have a BFF. Every step is a sag. My guts sink like a stone. Bitterness corrodes in my ribcage and digs a cavern for a gloomy creature. The only way I can possibly feel heavy and empty at the same time is by being dead. Oh, dying is such a terrible feeling..


In the privacy of the bathroom, I can finally let the tears overflow. The cold shower comes down in a blast. It doesn't numb the pain. I hug my chubby torso, and a sudden rage overcomes myself. Why can't I be pretty enough? I don't snack but I am not as thin as Kate! I even try harder than her at PE, it is not fair! My short hair.. why can't mother let it grow long? No boys like short hair on girls! I tug at it, willing it to reach my shoulders. Gaaah! I shut the water and weep into the towel.

"She better hold him tight, give him all her love,
look in those beautiful eyes and know she's lucky 'cause:
He's the reason for the teardrops on my guitar,
the only thing that keeps me wishing on a wishing star.."

Oh, how very well Taylor Swift understands! I don't pull out the yearbook like I did on most nights, there is no point anymore. I don't pull out my homework either, leaving it neglected on the floor with my bag. I sit at my desk listening to the music, dazed. Next to the yearbook is a folder full of certificates. Subject best students, high honours, and most recently, grade seven's best string ensemble student. Who cares if I had a whole library of them, if he will not love me?

There is no use trying to sleep. I tip toe downstairs, navigate through the dark, switch the piano on, push back the cover, and plug in the headphones. The street lights glow dim through the thin curtains. The floor is cold. There is no sound but the wind rustling some trees outside. On a night like this, I shall play Beethoven's Piano Sonata No. 8 Op. 13, second movement. Sonata Pathetique.

A mellow A flat major. Adagio cantabile. The simple treble and bass melodies intertwine with a soft accompaniment. Just me, him, and the wind. Contrary motion followed by a mild sequence. We sometimes drift apart, sometimes come together. A sweet secondary function and resolve again. Triplets ascend to the next octave with a new level of passion. And again.

A heart wrenching f minor ascends. Ugh.. agony. It then mellows down with a flourish to E flat major. Lazily descending.. back to A flat major. Recall the encounter, take away the pain. Just us. But not for long.

The soothing A flat goes melancholy, triplets beating with anxiety. Find a way out of this, break the surface, with E major. Relieving at first, but then ominous. The only real way, must be A flat major. Again, but anew with triplets from the journey. The memory is ever more enhanced, more beautiful than ever, and finally I am content to let go. It slips away bit by bit, first a lighter bass, then merging of bass and accompaniment, a diminuendo, a few final flickers, and a last sigh.


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