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Chapter 6

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Chapter Six

Carnegie Hall was absolutely packed. Jonah led the way as they fought through the thick crowd, towards Will Call. It was not easy getting there. It was a wealthy, demanding crowd, and everyone seemed like they were rushing to make the concert. She had never seen so many well-dressed people in one place. Most of the men were in black tie, and the women wore long evening gowns. Jewels glittered everywhere. It was exciting.

Jonah got the tickets and lead her up the stairs. He handed them to the usher, who tore them and handed back the stubs.

"Can I keep one?" Caitlin asked, as Jonah went to put the two ticket stubs in his pocket.

"Of course," he said, handing one to her.

She rubbed it with her thumb.

"I like hanging onto things like this," she added, blushing. "Sentimental, I guess."

Jonah smiled, as she stuck it in her front pocket.

They were directed by an usher down a luxurious hallway with thick, red carpeting. Framed pictures of artists and singers lined the walls.

"So, how did you score free tickets?" Caitlin asked.

"My viola teacher," he answered. "He has season tickets. He couldn't make it tonight, so he gave them to me. I hope it doesn't take away from it that I didn't pay for them myself," he added.

She looked at him, puzzled.

"Our date," he answered.

"Of course not," she said. "You brought me here. That's all that matters. This is awesome."

Caitlin and Jonah were directed by another usher into a small door, which opened up right into the concert hall. They were up high, maybe 50 feet, and in their small box area there were only 10 or 15 seats. Their seats were right on the edge of the balcony, flush against the railing.

Jonah opened the thick, plush chair for her, and she looked down at the massive crowd and at all of the performers. It was the classiest place she had ever been. She looked out at the sea of gray hair, and she felt 50 years too young to be here. But thrilled all the same.

Jonah sat, and their elbows touched, and she felt a thrill at the warmth of his body beside her. As they settled in and sat there, waiting, she wanted to reach over and take his hand, and hold it in hers. But she didn't want to risk being too bold. So she sat there, hoping that he would reach over and take hers. He didn't make any move. It was early. And maybe he was shy.

Instead, he pointed, leaning over the railing.

"The best violinists are seated closest to the lip of the stage," he said, pointing. "That woman there is one of the best in the world."

"Have you ever played here?" She asked.

Jonah laughed. "I wish," he said. "This hall is only 50 blocks away from us, but it might as well be a planet away in terms of talent. Maybe one day," he added.

She looked down at the stage, at the hundreds of performers tuning their instruments. They were all dressed in black tie, and they all seemed so serious, so focused. Against the back of the wall stood a huge choir.

Suddenly, a young man, maybe 20, with long, flowing black hair, dressed in a tux, strutted proudly onto the stage. He cut right through the aisle of performers, heading for the center. As he did, the entire audience rose to its feet and applauded.

 "Who's he?" Caitlin asked.

He reached the center and bowed repeatedly, smiling. Even from up here, Caitlin see that he was startlingly attractive.

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by Morgan Rice
After moving to a new city, high school senior Caitlin Paine is thrus...
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