From: Oliver :)
Agahan mo bukas. Kokopya ako ng assignments.
Yeah, he has my number. Eh ano naman? Puro ganyan lang ang texts niya. Yun lang siguro talaga ang silbi ko sa kanya. Huhu. Ni goodnight wala.
To: Oliver :)
Okay. Goodnight! :]]
Nag-reply pa rin ako. 30% pa rin ang possibility na matuwa siya no!
From: Oliver :)
Huhuhu. 70% possibility na i-shut up niya ako. T__T Kainis!! Maka-tulog na nga!
Kinabukasan, gustuhin ko mang pumasok nang maaga eh hindi ko magawa. Pinadala ko na lang kay cousin Rochelle ang notebooks ko para ibigay sa kanya.
I have a minor virus ailment, commonly known as flu (LOL), and my head hurts badly.
Kinailangan kong umabsent. One day break from getting embarrassed by the one I love. Hay.
The next, next day, pumasok na ako. And school’s really weird.
Lahat ng nakaka-salubong ko eh ngini-ngitian ako, o kaya babati sa’kin..”Uy!!! Ang swerte-swerte mo! Sayang lang two days kang absent..”
Like, SERIOUSLY, anong nangyari nung wala ako???!!
Nung nasa may classroom na ‘ko, huminga ako nang malalim. Whew.
Kaso hindi pa man ako nakaka-lapit sa upuan ko, may humila, ay kumaladkad pala, sa akin. Nag-sigawan lahat nang mga naka-kita sa’min.
”Hey!! Saan mo ba ako dadalhin? Masakit ah!!!”
Maya-maya, tumigil kami sa tapat ng lockers niya. May kinuha siya at inabot niya sa’kin.
Mga notebooks ko.
”Oh? Ikaw naman. Hindi mo na ako kailangang kaladkarin para dit----” Hindi pa ako nakaka-recover pero kinaladkad na naman niya ako. This time, dinala niya ako sa fields.
Hmm, mukhang may program na ginawa rito ah, naka-set pa yung stage pero hinahakot na yung mga speakers at mics.
“Teka, anong program yung ginawa nung absent ako?”
He stared at me blankly.
“Shut up.” And there goes his phenomenal dialogue. Ugh.
“You know what? For a nerd, you’re so stupid!”
Ano raw? Teka nga muna, below the belt na yun ah.
“Alam mo nakaka-sakit ka na-----“
”SHUT UP!! MAKINIG KA LANG!!” O___O
”Look, I like you. I mean, yeah. Oh, No!!What I’m saying is, uhhh..” I smirked at him, napa-tungo siya.
“Oh sh*t” He said.
“What I’m trying to say is that I’M CRAZY ABOUT YOU!!!” Sigaw niya. ?____?
“Nung una pa lang kitang nakita, gusto na kita! Kinuha ko number mo kasi gusto kong maging close tayo! HUmihiram ako ng notebooks sayo kahit na meron na naman akong assignment! Tapos, ayaw kitang pagsalitain kasi natatameme at natutulala ako kapag nagsasalita ka na! Tapos kung kelan nawala na yung ka-torpehan ko, tsaka ka naman umabsent!”
I can’t say anything... Baka naman nagha-hallucinate lang ako?
Lumapit siya sa’kin..
“Oh ngayon, papayagan na kitang mag-salita. Let me court you or I’ll shut your mouth forever?”
“Wait.. Y-you mean, considering all the things you’ve said, there’s really a 99% possibility that you also have feelings for---“
“SHUT UP!!!!” Nagulat ako. ‘Shut up’ na naman? Akala ko ba pagsa-salitain niya na ako??
He smiled.. I felt something poked my stomach.
“It’s 100%.” He whispered.
Story No. 9
She doesn’t need eyes.
“Watch it, Pirate!!” My friend Libby tells me. Oh great. I almost gave my first kiss to the floor.
“Haha!! Thanks, Libby. That was close. Whew.” I say while composing and assuring myself that no one else saw what happened.
But hey!! Pirate’s definitely not my name. Mine’s Mae. Everyone calls me Pirate because Uhh.. Crap. It’s embarrassing.
You see, I can only see through my left eye. The right one has been blind since I was born. But that’s not the embarrassing thing. It’s the reason why they call me ‘Pirate’.
They say I should wear the pirate eye-patch. You know the kind of eyepatch which only covers one eye? As if I wanted to look like an extra character from ‘Spongebob Squarepants’. But I just let them call me that way. It’s nothing really I’ve grown to like it, too. Now I think it’s cool. Pirate. Yeah.
No one’s been bad to me at school and thankfully, they don’t pity me because of my disability. Besides, I don’t need to be ashamed of this. I’m just thank ful that I can still see.
I’m in high school and I’m living normally despite my half-blindness. Plus, I can sleep while winking. I did that many times in class. Teachers thought I’m just winking at them. Yes, it’s possible. All it takes is practice. *winks*
“So.. You eating with us this time?” Oh, I almost forgot Libby beside. Kidding.
“Because you saved me, YES.”
“Finally!!!” Libby exclaims.
I haven’t been eating with my friends for a week because I’ve got a big bunch of craps, I mean articles to finish for our school paper.
The aroma of mouth-watering foods hugging my nose and the cozy atmosphere combined with the comforting noise from the people inside indicates that we’re already heading for the cafeteria. My, my. I missed this place. I’ve been eating in the editorial board’s office for a week, with only papers, pens and computers as company.
Even through one eye, I immediately saw my friends sitting in three tables which they’ve put together to make a long table.
“Libby!! PIRATE!! Oh my gosh!! You’re here!!” Next thing I remember was me being an instant sandwich spread, my friends being the bread.
After our dramatic reunion, they all went back to our table shouting for food.
Well, except for one.
“Hey there, Pirate.” He says while grinning.
“Hey there, Captain.” I say, imitating his tone.
“Good thing you’re back. Come on. Let’s join the chums.” He says, putting an arm around my shoulders.
Oh well, Dave’s absolutely not my boyfriend (But I wish he is). He’s a close friend.
Though I’m not a normal girl.. I still have the right to love, even secretly. I can’t and I don’t have the guts to tell him. He’s a great guy.. He’s good-looking, smart, friendly and understanding. Plus, he’s very popular. Almost every girl in school chases him. And I don’t think a half-blind girl can catch up with that ‘chasing’.
Half-running, I’m making my way back to school. I’m just a streer away at home when Courtney, my friend, called me that there’s a problem with our school paper. Being the editor-in-chief, It’s my freakin’ responsibility to fix it.
I’m a few strides away from our office when I thought I heard some of my friends talking.
I was holding the doorknob when I heard Dave say something… Something interesting.
“Oh Come on, Libs! What I’m asking is very simple. Fnd me a girl whom I could flirt with.” He says.
Uh. A girl whom he could FLIRT with?? Is this really Dave??
“You’re silly, Dave. Oh, why not try Mae? She’s pretty and awesome though she’s a Pirate.” Libby says with a giggle. Oh, Libby! I could kiss you right now!!
I mean, it’s okay with me. Dave haven’t dated anygirl yet. I’d love to be the first one.
Crossing my fingers, I waited for his answer.
“I.. I don’t know.. I don’t want her..” Then he trails off.
I want to stay and wait until he adds some more. Maybe he’s going to say something else.. Something good.
But my duty calls me.
“Mae, you’ve gotta be here in a minute!! Sir Peyton’s getting hilarious!!” Maegan says, half-begging.
I glanced at the room in front of me for the last time.
Maybe he doesn’t really like me. Not the like the way I do.
People wearing jackets and sweatshirts, heaters giving warmth in their homes, chimneys smoking, and the cold breeze even in day time proves that the winter season had already entered our town.
It’s my favourite season. It’s one of the reasons why I thank God for still giving me a chance to see. Seeing those tiny flakes of snow falling slowly makes me feel so blessed. I could spend a whole day catching them and letting them melt on my skin. That is if I don’t turn into a big block of ice before the day ends, of course.
Also, being surrounded by these cold clouds makes me feel at ease. They make me forget bad experiences.
Speaking of bad experiences, I haven’t talked to Dave after I’ve overheard his conversation with Libby. It’s just too painful.
I let out a deep sigh as I swing my feet alternately. I’m currently sitting on a swing at a playground few blocks away from home. No snow today, but the surroundings are still covered with white. It’s still cold I had to rub my palms together quickly to produce little heat.
“Merry Christmas.” I say to myself. Mom and Dad are still at work. I don’t have anyone at home to celebrate with.
I’m humming my favourite Christmas song when a voice singing an irritating song interrupted me.
“Ohhhhh.. Who leaves in a pineapple under the sea?”
He makes a great effort of imitating the voice of the singer and honestly, it sounds awful.
And who else sings that song just to tease me?
“Screw you, Dave.” I say while throwing a handful of snow at him.
“And Merry Christmas to you, too, Pirate.” He says, putting a lot of emphasis on the last word.
And yeah, we live on the same village.
“Why aren’t you at home?” He says.
“No one’s there. Too lonely. You?”
“Everyone’s there. Too noisy.” He grins.
We stared at each other for a couple of minutes. We started with a giggle and ended up laughing our butts off.
“Gosh, I missed you.” Dave says while wiping a tear from his eye.
“And I did, too.” I answer while rubbing my poor, tired, little tummy, trying to hide my reddened cheeks.
This Christmas feels like the best one I’ve ever had, because there’s someone I have to celebrate it with.
And we never thought it could also be the worst.
“Be careful, okay?” He pats my head.
“I will, Captain.” I say while saluting him.
We bid each other good bye and are now heading to opposite directions.
I am practicing my winking while skipping and hopping happily on my way home, blocking my view for an approaching car. It was too late when I noticed it coming.
I just felt a killing pain all over my body. Darkness enveloped me at once.
Ouch. My whole body hurts. I can’t even feel my fingers!
And.. I can’t open my eyes!!!
“Are you saying that…?” Hey.. That’s Dave!!
“Yes. We did everything we can but..” The unfamiliar voice trails off.
I can hear Dave sobbing… I can imagine the things going on around me. It’s like I can see through hearing. Since when did I have a strong sense of hearing?
“D-Dave?” I manage to say.
“H-hey, Mae! How are you feeling?”
I tried opening my eyes and when I did.. I still can’t see a thing.
“O-oh my gosh. I can’t see!!!”
“Shh. Shh, Mae.. I’m sorry. I’m really, really sorry! I should’ve just walked you home!! I’m really sorry, Mae!!” He says, trying to hide his sobs.
Oh. I remember everything. I met an accident. And I.. just lost my sight. Completely.
The thought makes me want to cry out loud. Tears started to fall from my now blinded eyes.
That’s the only thing my eyes can do now. To cry.
“Mae, Mae. Listen. Don’t let this one get you down, okay? You’re brave, right? I’m sorry. I promise I’ll be by your side. You lost your sight, but you will never loose the people who loves you. Especially me..”
Still sobbing, I managed to hug him. I don’t blame the car, Dave or God. Maybe this is how things are supposed to be going.
Hours later, my friends, classmates and even my parents are inside my room. Dave never left my side, too. I felt so.. complete.
“Uhm, everyone..” Dave calls. Everyone seems to be listening because all I can hear was the cound from the air conditioner. “I… I would like to say something..”
“Get over it!! You see, I can’t see now so silence is so boring.” I say, crossing my arms above my chest to show how bored I am. Teehee.
He lets outy a chuckle and continues speaking.
“After college.. I.. I would like to marry Mae.. B-but of course that is after I get a stable job. Please.. Let me.. I’m not doing this out of pity or sympathy, but because I have been in love with her since grade school. I’ve been a coward for so long.” He trails off, and he takes my hand.
“You’ll marry me, right?”
Wiping my tears, I say, “Do I have a choice? I mean, I’d love to marry you.” Judging by the sound of shoes thumping against the floors, I can say that he is jumping his happy butt off.
I can’t believe he really loved me, and that he still loves me after what happened.
“Hey, I thought you don’t wanna flirt with me, huh?” I say after everyone left us alone, so that we could have ‘quality time’ (as they say).
“Y-you heard that?”
“Of course. I was meant to have awesome sense of hearing.” He looks at me sincerely.
“I absolutely don’t want to flirt with you. Flirting is a bad thing.. It’s nothing serious… I already love you, so why would I flirt with you?”
“Aaaah. Now you’re smiling, huh?”
Losing my capability to see was a great loss But it made my relationship with my friends and with my parents a lot stronger.
After the accident, I had to stop school. It’s really sad, yes. But we can’t do anything about it.
On the other hand, it’s amazing that I can still play the piano the way I played it when I can still see it. That became my job. I do concerts and recitals. I play for different occasions. I also teach children, normal or not.
Dave decided to study ophthalmology, despite his dream of being the most successful retailer of eyepatches and blindfolds. Our friends and families never left us even now that we are both successful.
Well, I guess I have to end it here I’ve got a wedding to catch. *winks*
Story No. 10
“Yung third finger mo, ibaba mo sa 4th string. Ganun din naman ang tunog niyan e.”
Nginitian niya ako nang mabilis kong magawa nang tama yung ininuturo niya. Yun yung ngiti na kayang magpa-tigil ng mundo ko.
Magda-dalawang taon ko nang naka-kasama tuwing Thursday si Kuya Dave. Tinuturuan niya akong mag-gitara, ang he is HIGHLY-paid. Gusto kasi ng parents ko na sa lahat ng bagay may alam ako. Gusto nila talagang maipagma-mayabang nila ako sa clients, friends or relatives namin. Tipikal na sitwasyon ng isang anak-mayaman, solong anak pa.
Oo, naku-kuha ko lahat ng materyal na bagay na gusto ko, kahit hindi ko naman talaga kailangan. Pero kapalit noon ay ang napaka-laking responsibilidad at napaka-taas na expectations ng lahat sa akin.
Cliché na masyado ang kwento ng buhay ko, di ba?
Natural. Mas gusto ko yung simpleng buhay lang.. Yung.. Malaya akong magdesisyon para sa sarili ko.
Malaya akong pumili kung sino makakasama.. At mamahalin ko.
“Okay! Naku. Mamayan niyan mas magaling ka na sa’kin, Audrey! Okay na ‘to ngayong araw. Next week na ulit.” Nilinis na namin yung mga ginamit namin. Hay. Magi-intay na naman ako ng isang linggo bago ko siya makasama.
Third year high school na ako, 15 years old. 18 years old naman si Kuya Dave, pero tumigil siya sa pag-aaral dahil sa namatay yung parents niya sa isang sunog dati, wala nang ibang pwedeng tumulong sa kanya kasi wala na silang kamag-anak, bukod sa Lolo at Lola niya na parehong disabled na. Doon siya nakatira ngayon, at sa kanila napu-punta yung sinusweldo ni Kuya Dave sa amin.
He’s such a wonderful person. Inuna niya yung grandparents niya kesa sa pag-aaral niya. Sabi niya kasi, yung Lolo at Lola niya, anytime pwede na ring mawala sa kanya. Eh yung paga-aral niya, marami pang time dun since bata pa naman siya, tumigil siya sa kalagitnaan ng second sem ng Second year niya as Architecture student. Sayang nga kasi matalino talaga siya.
Pero kahit ano pa man ang mangyari.. Kahit ano at sino pa siya.. Walang magbabago. Siya pa rin ang FIRST love ko.
Hindi namin napapag-usapan yung mga ganoong bagay. Talagang tungkol sa music at paga-aral lang ang madalas na topics namin. Marami rin kasing pumi-pigil sa amin na mag-open ng ganoong conversation.
Una, bawal pa akong mag-boyfriend. Syempre, priority ko raw dapat ang paga-aral ko. Second, nata-takot ako sa pwedeng sabihin ni Dave.. At natatakot din ako sa mga bagay na pwedeng masabi ko. Masakit kasi.. Alam kong if ever, tututol lahat sa nararamdaman ko para sa kanya. Kapag sinabi ko sa kanya ngayon.. Maraming pwedeng mangyari. Malaki ang possibility na ilayo nila sa akin si Dave. Ayoko i-risk yun.
Siya lang yung nagi-isang taong naging totoo sa akin. Siya yung nagpa-palaya sa akin sa kulungan na ‘to.
Alam kong lahat sa family ko, umaasa na pipili ako ng lalaking, “disente” (in their own definition ng salitang disente), mayaman at “class”.
Pero, gusto rin naman ng lahat dito si Dave. Lahat kasundo niya. Sobrang bait kasi niya.
Yun nga lang..
We still can NEVER be. Parang teleserye lang. At tsaka.. Ni hindi ko nga alam kung gusto niya ba ako, kung may nagugustuhan siyang iba or kung may nagustuhan na siya noon. Basta ang alam ko lang, hindi pa siya nagkaka-girlfriend.
“Anong kadalasan mong ginagawa kapag wala tayong session?” Out of the blue niyang tinanong. Oo nga naman ‘no? Sa tagal na naming magkakilala ngayon niya lang na-itanong yun.
“Hmm. Wala naman. Boring nga eh.”
“Siguro nami-miss mo ako parati, ‘no?” Sabi niya na sobra namang ikinagulat ko. Iba kasi yung dating eh. Never pa niyang ginamit yung ganoong ‘tono’ sa pagsa-salita niya.
“Excuse me?” Sabi ko.
“Haha. Wala. Sige baba na. Dinner na rin yata sa baba.” 3PM-6PM kasi ang sched namin since may klase pa ako. Napaka-ikling oras.
Kumain kami habang nagkkwentuhan. Masaya, kahit kami lang apat nung kasambahay, gardener at si Dave lang ang magkaka-sabay kumain. Bihira kasing umuwi nang maaga sina Mommy at Daddy. Syempre busy sila parati. Kung nagka-kasabay naman kami, super formal.
Pero kahit ganoon, mahal na mahal ko sila.. At alam kong mahal din nila ako. Kaya nga.. Mas inuuna ko yung responsibilidad ko sa kanila kesa ang puso ko.
“Naku Dave. Sigurado ka bang sa gwapo mong yan eh hindi ka pa nagkaka-gelpren? Nasa tamang edad ka na!” Sabi ni Tatay Dante, yung gardener namin. Muntik na akong mabilaukan no’n. Bakit ang daming out-f-the-blue questions sa gabing ‘to?
“Oo nga naman! Eh nung kasing edad mo nga ako, pila na ang manli-ligaw ko!” Sabi ni Nanay Elsa, natawa naman kami ni Dave nung makita naming parang gulat na gulat si Tatay Dante. Hindi makapaniwala.
“Haha. Kayo naman po. Hindi ba kayo naniniwala sa akin?” Sagot ni Dave kahit nagpi-pigil pa siya ng tawa.
“Naku. At ikaw naman, ang aming magandang prinsesa, wala naman bang umaaligid sa’yo?” Nalipat bigla sa akin ang atensyon nilang lahat.
“Wala po. Alam niyo naman pong..” Nginitian na lang nila akong lahat.. At medyo nagulat ako nung matagal kaming nagka-tinginan ni Dave.
“Ah, sige po. Mauuna na po ako. Baka naga-alala na sina Lola.” Tumayo na si Dave. Hay. Ilang araw ko na naman siyang hindi maki-kita.
Hinatid ko na siya sa gate. Naga-ayos na kasi sa kusina sina Nanay at Tatay.
“Ingat pag-uwi.” Nginitian ko siya tapos humarap siya sa akin.
“Advanced Happy Birthday. Magi-ingat ka parati. Bye bye!” Tapos nun umalis na siya. Hindi ko alam pero..
Kumirot ang dibdib ko sa sinabi niya.
“Si Audrey? Okay na ba? Naka-ayos na?” Rinig kong tanong ni Mommy sa make-up artist ko.
Lahat busy dito sa bahay, wala kang makikitang namamahinga or naka-upo lang.
Anong meron? Ngayon ang 16TH BIRTHDAY KO.
Parang ngang debut na eh. Pinagsuot ako ng gown, inayusan at malaki ang handaan. Para na rin kasi ‘tong gathering para sa clients at business partners nina Daddy, kaya malaki. Syempre, ayaw nila ng bad impression.
Simula kaninang umaga.. Hindi ko pa siya naki-kita. Nakaka-lungkot naman.
Normally hindi naman talaga kami nagki-kita kapag wala kaming session e. Pero iba ngayon.. Birthday ko naman eh.. Hindi man lang ba siya dadalaw? Or kahit batiin niya man lang ako?
After 20 minutes, pinalabas na nila ako sa garden kung saan ginaganap ang party. Halos hindi ko nga nakilala ang garden namin.
Sobrang daming tao.. Andaming naka-tingin sa akin. Alam kong dapat sanay na ako sa ganito, pero iba eh. Alam kong bawat tingin na yun, may katumbas na panghu-husga sa akin, sa pamilya ko.
Doon ako naka-upo sa table sa may parang stage. May EmCee, may mga nag-entertain. Mabuti naman at hindi nabo-bore ang mga bisita.
Syempre, hindi ko naman maiwasang mapa-lingon sa paligid.
Hindi ka ba talaga dadating? Alam kong formal gathering ito.. Pero pwede naman siyang dumaan sa likod ah? Sabi ko kina Nanay tawagin ako kung sakaling dadating siya.
Nawa-walan na ako ng pag-asa..
“Oh please ijo, why are you being such a brat now? Save it for later!!” Narinig ko ang boses ni Mommy. Medyo sumisigaw na kasi siya.. Sino yung.. kausap niya?
“Hindi na po kasi ‘to makakapag-hintay, Ma’am! Please!”
Bababa na sana ako ng stage, kaso may humawak sa braso ko. MAHIGPIT.
“Stay. Here.” Sinabi niya yung habang naka-ngiti, pero mararamdaman mo yung authority sa boses niya. Naka-ngiti siya para walang makahalata sa mga bisita na may nangyayaring kakaiba. Yan si Daddy.
Syempre, wala akong magawa.
Si Dave.. Dumating si Dave!!
Pero bakit parang nagka-kagulo sila doon? Nakita kong hinihila na rin siya papunta sa loob ni Tatay Dante.. Bago siya tuluyang madala sa loob, nagka-tinginan pa kami..
Para bang nagmamaka-awa siya.. Na pakinggan siya.
Natapos ang birthday ko.. Hindi ko na naka-usap si Dave. Hindi ko siya naabutan sa loob ng bahay. Halos ma-iyak na ako noon.
Pero okay lang. Wednesday kasi yung birthday ko, at ngayon, Thursday, may session ulit kami. Kakausapin ko na siya nang maayos.
Bakit wala pa siya? Usually 30 mins. Early siya eh.
Narinig kong bumukas yung pinto. Akala ko talaga hindi na siya darating!!
“Dave! Akala ko---“ Natigilan ako nang makita ko kung sino ang nasa pinto.
“D-Daddy..” Nag-bless ako. “Good afternoon po.. Bakit ka nandito? Asan po si Dave?”
Dumiretso siya sa loob ng kwarto ko.
“’Wag mo nang asahan si Dave, Audrey. We’ve hired another mentor for you, and this time hindi lang gitara ang alam niya. He’s also an expert with—“
“DAD?! Bakit naman po biglaan? Nag-resign po ba siya? Or.. Did you fire him?”
“Audrey, He’s no good for you.” Natulala ako sa sinabi ni Dad.
“What? Dad, bakit nasasabi niyo ‘yan ngayon? He’s been with us for almost two years!! And now bigla niyong sasabihin na nakaka-sama siya sa akin? Why Dad?!”
“Yes, we trust him.. We TRUSTED him. We really did, anak. Mabait siyang bata, matalino at responsible. But we never gave him the permission to fall inlove with you!!!”
Natahimik kami pareho ni Dad. What did he just say?
Si Dave? Fell inlove? With me? HA! Kelan pa?