Musical Connections

The time with Lance and Elena had been interesting and they seemed alright, at least, had been to her. If a little snobbish. She was tired of the crutches but still had to have them. Hopefully, Tuesday would be the last day for them.

As much as she liked Carter, as a friend, the two had been spending a lot of time together and, in Melissa’s mind, she couldn’t imagine how he could just not be getting sick of her. So when he had texted about staying at the boardwalk, she texted him back she was fine and he should stay and have fun.

She called her brother to check on things at home but after the third time, he asked if something was wrong, she realized she had to get off the phone with him. Mel couldn’t tell her family what was going on but she was hoping Carter was right and he’d be able to get something on Doug that would allow her to be free of him and soon.

After her call she started to get bored and figured it would be a good time to try to use the music room. She didn’t think anyone would be there as a lot of people had other plans for today. Her guitar was down there already so she wouldn’t have to lug the thing back and forth but it was in one of the practice rooms, so, she wasn’t sure if she’d be able to get access to that. Still, there was the piano, she could always make use of that. When she got to the music room the door was closed; her hand reached the knob, opening it just a crack before she heard the sound of a saxophone. Melissa had learned quickly that the music classes had a few piano and guitar players, when it came to other instruments, there weren’t as many. The saxophone was one of those instruments. There weren’t that many Sax players.

Peeking her head in as not to disturb whoever it was playing; she spotted Jason Alder. She didn’t know him particularly well but he was in some music classes with her; particularly Jazz band. She just stayed there for a moment and listened. Hearing a teen play saxophone wasn’t common and he was good; really good.


He turned around, looked at her, and, despite still playing, gave a slight smile and waved her in. Mel entered the room, quietly closed the door behind her, and took a seat. He just kept playing, not missing a beat. He finished the song and moved the sax down, letting it hang from the strap around his neck.

“That was really good,” Melissa said.

“Thanks. Do you know it?” Jason asked

Mel shrugged. “To be honest, I’ve not heard before but I liked it. What's it called."

Jason nodded, he wasn’t that surprised. "No Man, No Cry. If you liked it you should check out this Sax's musician that, and I swear, goes by the name Jimmy Sax." He paused for a moment. "So, do you like Jazz?"

"I actually do but I can't say I've heard a lot of it." Mel responded.

Jason thought that might be her answer as most teens didn’t listen to Jazz and many had never even been exposed to it. Living in New Orleans had been different as Jazz was everywhere there, even on the street corners by random bands or solo artists. Here though, it wasn’t that way. He had quickly learned that when he had started school here. Most of the students never connected him with his dad, which wasn’t necessarily a bad or a good thing, it just was what it was.

“I can leave if you need the room to practice,” Jason said, he understood that sometimes people came in here to spend some time without an audience.

“No, I mean you were here first. I could always go into a practice room but I really would like to hear you play another song. If you don’t mind.” Melissa was telling the truth. He was just so good and there was something appealing about a saxophone player.

Jason got a slight grin; “I will but only if you join me.”

“Oh, I don’t know any jazz songs,” Melissa said and really hoped he didn’t pull out any sheet music. She had been working on learning to read music with Dante but was far from being able to read an entire song.

“Hmm….well, maybe we could do a song you know then,” Jason said. “Pick something and I’m sure I can adapt it for the saxophone.”

“Are you sure? I mean sure you want to play with me?” Melissa asked. Really the question just slipped out but that whole not being good enough was never exactly far from her mind despite getting over some hurdles with it since coming here.

Jason calmly said. “Well, to be honest I’ve kind of wanted to play with you since I saw you perform at the beach party.”

Melissa was surprised. She had seen him perform as well and he had been really good. She really hadn’t expected him to say that to her. “Well, I’m flattered. I…” She took a breath. “Ok, Maybe something like ‘Alicia Keys….how about “If I Ain’t Got You?”

If I Ain’t Got You

Jason nodded. “That’ll work.”

They spent a few minutes working out how to make the song work with the two of them playing. It didn’t take long and they were soon enough playing together…a two person jam session. Melissa on piano and vocals and Jason on the sax; they blended well together.

The song ended and Jason gave her a nice smile, "I liked that. You are really good, you
know. Would you be up for doing a few more?"

"Sure," Mel said. The two started on another song. They didn't talk beyond talking about the music. It was freeing; in a way and for the time, and time slipped past them easily.

Before either knew it it was getting near dinner time. Jason asked if she wanted to join him. Mel was really tempted actually but she didn't know what Doug would do. Doug allowed her time with Carter because he thought he controlled Carter but she knew he wouldn't be ok with her spending time with Jason like that and Mel really didn't want to drag anyone else into the mess she was currently in.

So she thanked him but declined dinner, lying about having plans. With that he said he was going and would see her later. She gave her own goodbye.

Jason walked away but Mel lingered on his mind. He had been curious about her since he saw her at the beach party. Before the talent show but the show had piqued his curiosity more about her. He had though found out about Melissa dating Doug. Jason wondered about that. She seemed nice and Doug always came across as, well, the opposite.

He didn't know nearly enough about the situation to know what was actually going on.

At this moment, Jason only knew he kind of wished she had said yes to his invitation.

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