Avatar de Erwan
Chapter 6

Renewal

Eight months later…

 

“The project has suffered some delays but, overall, it’s still in line with the deadlines fixed at the outset.” Several heads nod in agreement. “All the stages have been completed according to the initial schedule.” The meeting remains serious despite the excitement infecting, as it inevitably does, the conclusion of a project. Workers enter and leave the building around the stationary group of people; apprentices tidy away equipment, remove the plastic sheets taped to the lobby tiles, and clean the new light fixtures. The man in the raincoat has finished delivering his report. As planned, 20 Future Street has been entirely renovated. Totally. In accordance with Charles Langley’s final wishes.

– Do you have any questions? asks another voice.
– Yes, Erwan, I do.
– Please go ahead, Mr. Arnoux.
– It’s not really a question; more a clarification,

 

 

says the retiree, adjusting his construction helmet. Regarding work on the roof, the association set up by the residents to manage the building has been granted the loan it wanted.

 

“This will be the last phase of the work
and it can start rapidly.”

 

 

– Perfect, concludes Erwan. It’s noted.
The meeting breaks up. Yves Arnoux looks at Erwan who is still talking with a site manager. He can’t prevent himself from smiling when he remembers the same young man, a few months earlier, his hair unruly, a look of sheer embarrassment on his face as he apologized for playing his music too loud. It’s not only the building that has changed.
– What are you smiling about, Yves? asks Erwan as he walks towards him.
– Nothing in particular… I was just thinking how far we’ve come.
– Yes, it’s incredible, isn’t it?

 

“Do you remember that meeting
at your place?

When we discovered
how things stood?”

 

 

– Yes, Arnoux answers with a laugh. Doom and despondency!
– But we didn’t give up. Today, our association, our commitment in favor of the building, it all seems so perfectly natural. We had everything we needed to succeed! But, at that time, I was devastated. I could already see myself looking for another apartment with my references as a vaguely musical student! It wouldn’t have been easy.
– I’m going up to see Mona. Do you want to come with me?
– No sorry, I have to go and see Hanane.

 

By the way,

don’t forget this evening.
It’s THE big night!
– I’ll be there of course.
– 8 o’clock on the dot!”