Feet pounding hard against the glossy wooden floor, I pulled a hard right, sliding against the smooth wall briefly to prevent myself from toppling over ungracefully. Eyes flashing backwards for a moment, I laughed breezily as I didn't see my brother following.
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Slowing myself to catch my heaving breath, I finally took the chance to observe my surroundings. Smooth beige paint hid the plaster of past accidents and the scarce decorations warned me of the trouble I would be in if I didn't leave.
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Adrenaline was replaced by curiosity that could not be quenched unless I explored further towards the lone oak door. Glancing down the hall as I heard a distant voice call my name, I reached for the brass door knob. It was cool to the touch and as I quietly stepped into the dark room, I was surprised to take note of the fact that the door didn't creak. It was well cared for over the years, which in itself was odd as this room was off-limits.
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Closing the door behind me, I felt along the coarse wall until I bent my nail against the switch. I was disappointed to find that the bulb in the light was burnt out. I was left in the endless darkness that I know my brother experienced his life in.
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Carefully venturing further, I was determined to find out why this room was 'out of bounds'. It was a bit distracting to have the stuffy air practically suffocating me, warming the air up significantly. The air was so packed with dust that I could taste it. It left a foreign feeling on my tongue; an annoying sensation that felt akin to that of a hair in your mouth or a piece of food stuck in between your teeth.
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Stinging pain ripped me out of my thoughts. Grasping onto my aching knee, I explored the offending object presented before me. It was a bench. It had a smooth finish, smelling of wood stain; making my nose cringe briefly.
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Sitting down, I was convinced that there was something in front of me. If I was thinking of this right, they wouldn't leave a bench in the middle of the room for my brother to trip over; he has enough accidents as it is...
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Stretching my hands out blindly, I was triumphant to discover that something was indeed here. Perched upon the bench, the large object was in line with my stomach. My hands ghosted across a wooden surface that was curved and natural oils stained in the pattern of a hand placed carefully in the same spot every time.
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Could this open?
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Grinning, I found it did. Hidden from the dusty air was a keyboard of fifty-two long, wide keys and thirty-six smaller, shorter keys that sat higher and further back. It was a piano, one that was well loved; the keys were worn with use and gave way easily to any amount of weight from years of adoring abuse.
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A sharp note cried out into the ever silent room, bouncing off of the walls, giving the brief impression that the room was an endless expanse -that it was not a room at all.
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"What are you doing?" a sudden onslaught of warm light flowed into the room from the hall. Freezing momentarily, I clenched my jaw and avoided the doorway for a moment longer.
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Sure enough, my brother stood in the doorway in his casual clothes with his slightly ruffled hair, shadows covering his expression. The darkness of the room casted no light upon his pale face, though if his stance was anything to go by, he was angry. His tone of voice was tight and unforgiving, his posture stiff, tense with his hand against the wall.
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"Sorry!" I closed the piano's fall board -trying to ignore the beautiful ivory color it sported- and quickly rose to my feet. Squeezing past him, I brushed a hand against his side to assure him I had left. Calmly, I noisily trekked down the hall and stopped right after I turned the corner.
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My brother sighed and he disappeared into the dark room, his golden retriever -who I just noticed was there- following him obediently. The oak door closed with a quiet 'click' and I heard nothing more from him, his guide dog, or the polished piano.
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