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Muffliato

9. 12. 2008
At Salmon Square it's the year’s last evening. It’s nearly midnight. Few friends ran out to add their own light to the show of this night.
-Hurry up, Nick!– the oldest ran to the middle with the box under his arm.
- It’s going to be a nice blow, guys! – He shouted back.
-Two minutes, Nick! – someone watched the time…
– Joy! Matches!! – Nick called.
-Now!! – Everyone stepped back, waiting until the fuse reaches its end. High above the sky flashed to all colors. First shots puffed and fell to the ground. But in the sky there was really amazing show to watch. Boys stood in the corner of the square. Everyone was frozen and amazed, staring in to the sky that turned into a shower of fire. One explosion followed another. The limb-shaking sounds and children’s laughter filled the air. But then another shot flew up and our box fell over.
Boys shouted and jumped aside. But one of them didn’t notice the last shot. He just stood at the spot; eyes wide open for the shower of stars that filled the sky.
Amazing light turned into darkness and the explosion died in silence.
-Alex…Alex!!
That name threw him off his sleep. The shout faded away, but he couldn’t get rid of the whispering noise that came with his name. Alex...
It wasn‘t the first time, actually. He‘s been hearing them shouting since that night. In his dreams he was falling to the silence again and again. Many days sounds avoided him. Words were no use to him. Music had no rhythm and no melody for him.
Alex’s dad - Kevin Peterson - worked at the airport. He often took him there to help him spend the difficult days. Alex stood against the huge windows of airport hall. With his fingertips on the glass he listened to the sounds he could not hear.
One day Alex was pushing him palm to the glass on the ground floor and staring out sadly. Steps and voices of people passed his fingers and useless ears. Alex closed his eyes and listened so careful... He believed he can hear.
Then someone knocked on the glass from outside. He nearly jumped away, but then he just opened his eyes. A girl smiled at him from behind the glass. Then she put her hand against Alex’s. He slowly smiled as the glass got warmer. –You’re so nice...- he said, but no voice came out. He was locked in the silence. - No matter. It is enough for her to see my lips move...- he thought to himself. But then the girl grabbed his bag and left without a glance back.
- Hi! – the waitress looked at Alex sitting in the empty airport bar, head resting on his hands. Alex just watched her lips talking. - Would you like something to drink? – the waitress asked. Alex wondered...he desired to know how her voice sounds. But he couldn’t even remember his own.
– I’m sorry. – he tried to say. Waitress laughed.
- Am I speaking too loud? Do I really speak? – Alex asked himself. – I’d like much to talk with you. But I can’t hear anything. – he said. Waitress sat next to him.
- Oh, you’re the Peterson’s boy...Alex! – she said. Alex’s head filled with the whispering noise of his name.
- Oh, so what? – he snapped back, fixing his eyes into the window. When he wasn’t watching, he wasn’t listening.
He didn’t hear the words that waitress told him. - I heard what happened to you. I want to help you. –
-Because I’m sure you hear!Alex backed away from the waitress whispering loudly in his ear. The sudden breath shocked him and even when he wasn‘t watching, he heard.
With a whispering noise in his head he ran upstairs, punched in his father’s office and sat on the chair. Dad was somewhere as he always was. Alex wanted to wait for him to go home. He imagined the face of his father, angry with the word he always said first: - Listen...
- Enough of listening! I can’t listen!! – he shouted and walked up and down the room. The door opened, but that was only dad’s assistants. She glanced at Alex and then she started explaining something. She wasn’t speaking properly, but moving her hands quickly. The language of deaf...
- No!! I’m not so dependent on hands! – Alex shouted at her. He dropped into the chair and covered his face with hands. He left the airport alone. He hoped to escape the silence. It began to rain, but she walked the lane home.
Alex refused to learn the sign language. He believed silence will end and he will hear properly again. After escaping the airport he sat on a bench on the square. Salmon Square. He felt raindrops drumming on his back with no sound. He closed his eyes and shook with cold. He could only imagine the whisper of the rain. Tired of watching circles in the water in the silent square, he fell asleep.
Luckily his dad came after him quickly. A few days later, when Alex got better, they sat together.
- It is difficult for all of us. – father told him slowly, opening his mouth wide and moving his arms to make Alex understand. Alex just nodded. – Please... – father said, but then he went silent. He doesn’t know how to show Alex the words. So he just took a pencil and wrote them:
Don’t lose your faith. You still have hope.
Alex read them and looked at his father.
- No, dad. Not a bit! – he sighed.
- Sure you have, Alex! It will be better! It will be good! – his father cried, still moving his hands and showing.
- Then why you have to show me what are you saying?! Why are you speaking so slowly?! You speak to me even when I am deaf! Why, if I got hope?! – Alex shouted screamed at his father with no control of his voice. Then he left to his room until the next day.
- Alex! – he heard his name again. With a flash of green he glanced down. In the opposite corner of the square a girl screamed with fear. The whispering noise flew towards him and then the air around him filled with fire.
Alex woke up. His dad was standing near his bed and shaking him to life. – Alex, are you alright? -
- Leave it, I’m okay... – Alex said turning his face down, but father turned him back. – Do you want to go to work with me today? – father asked. He used his hands... like everyday since the accident. Alex refused and stayed home.
     His mother – Alice - came in the afternoon. They played together, when father was away. Alice turned on the radio and put it on the table so Alex could feel the music.
- I like this one. – he laughed with a loud rock song. Then Alice took a piece of paper and they wrote notes to each other. It was much easier than trying to speak.
- Why didn’t father take you to work? – mum asked.
- I didn’t want to come with him. I don’t want to go with him anymore. It’s no use. – Alex wrote back. Alice wanted to know more. But then Kevin came.
- Hello, everyone! Hi, Alex! – he called, but no one answered. He came to the kitchen where Alice and Alex were sitting with a piece of paper. Alice took the pencil and wrote:
JOIN THE GAME
- Oh...Alice! I have no time for... – Kevin didn’t want to fall into silence with them. But Alice underlined the words. Kevin sat down and Alice passed the paper to him.
- Okay then... – he sighed, but Alice pushed her finger to her lips. Rules had to be kept. So Kevin took the pencil and wrote: Guess what, Alex...Samantha was asking for you. Then he passed it to Alex.
- Who is Samantha? – asked Alex.
- The waitress’s daughter. I thought you know each other. – wrote Kevin. Alex thought about the girl on the other side of the window. – She wanted to talk with you. –
- But does she know that I... that I can’t hear anything? – asked Alex.
- Yes, she knows. – Alex left his mouth open. Both his parents smiled at him in silence. He never thought it could be so nice.
     The next time Alex came to the airport he met her. She was standing with her hand against the window as he did many times before.
- Samantha? – he said while coming to her. She turned to him and smiled. – Hi, Alex. – she said. Like every time, he heard the whispering noise of his name... but this time it was different. It was fine and gentle.
- Call me just Sam. – she said. With no hands, just with the look and slight nod of her head. And he understood. She kept her hand on the window and asked:
- What do you hear like this? –
Alex put his hand next to her.
- I hear planes. People. But... I just feel them. – he answered. They sat in the hall. Sam spoke and Alex watched her lips. She talked about her mother, her home, her school, her dog...and Alex listened. She didn’t use her hands even once. She told him everything with her lips and eyes, small nods and movements.
They were meeting in the airport hall nearly every day, talking. When she ended, he started. She listened to him. When he spoke too loud, she covered one of her ears. When he spoke too quiet, she leaned closer so he always knew how to talk.
They sat in the bar, playing with spoons, glasses and bottles of water, making something they could call music. Sometimes they made such huge noise that Sam’s mother told them to go away. Then they took a walk to the park. Alex was talking with Sam, remembering the sounds he used to hear and imaginating those he did not. Day after day Samantha added more and more sounds to his silent world.
- Airport security warning: Please do not leave any luggage unattended! Tink!! – she called with the voice of airport broadcast. Alex imagined how her voice sounds and laughed at the face she made.
- Pity you haven’t been to the airport before... – she said but then her smile vanished. She took his hand and looked at him. – I was there that night, Alex. I saw you. It was horrible. I’m so sorry. – she said and hugged him.
- No matter. – said Alex. – Now I can hear everything. –
 
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(Domi, 21. 1. 2009 18:54)

skor som na to nejak nemala cas..alebo skor odhodlanie :D a netrufam si povedat ze som to prelozila cele a je mozne ze som to pochopila uplne inak :D:D ale strasne sa mi to pacilo :))