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Microsoft Word - 2014_Great_American_Fiction_Contest-This_Elegant_Ruin-by_Erin_Bartels.docx

line. It had been a wonderful performance — one of their very best — and he was proud. He turned to the audience and did his customary bows. He motioned to the various sections of the orchestra and caused particular musicians to rise with a small wave of his hand. But, as they always did during the past several performances, his eyes lingered longest on a young violinist with long hair the color of ripe winter wheat and a creamy complexion, though she had never played a special part or a solo. When the curtain closed, Anna stood and gathered up her music and her violin. The sound of chairs scraping against the floor and music stands being lowered and the drone of the audience talking excitedly about where to go for a late-night bite of dessert now filled the space of the hall and the bits of lively dust disappeared as the spotlights were lost and the stage dimmed. Garrison’s all-powerful hands that had commanded this precise aural army like a puppet master controlled his marionettes were now grasped and shaken by these people who were, once again, just people. Some pudgy, some homely, some sweating, some awkward. A tall man, Garrison watched over their heads as Anna’s long hair disappeared backstage. Back in the green room the musicians were chatting and mingling, drinking the complimentary coffee and nibbling


Microsoft Word - 2014_Great_American_Fiction_Contest-This_Elegant_Ruin-by_Erin_Bartels.docx
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