Rosa and Charles
"I did not think to think that you loved me, Charles."
" I’m a good actor, Rosa. Tell me; what made you think to finally think?"
Rosa had one answer to Charlie’s question. His question was an important question. It was something of vital magnitude, how to answer the query. There was only one way to answer the important question.There was one way but the way was made up of 2 parts.
Rosa kissed Charlie’s forehead.Charles had a birthmark on his forehead. She’d always wanted to kiss him on his forehead. She had always wanted to kiss his birthmark. It was large and purple.
" Now, Charles. I thought to think that you love me, just now. Only now."
He smiled at this. Charles took Rosa’s right hand in both his hands. He managed to surprise Rosa. He would surprise her like this for many years to come. Charles pulled her close to him and lifted her. He decided to carry Rosa like able elders carry their young when families spend their Sundays together. For the sweet melodies of the young that ring true in life.
He was taking up law in Manila’s oldest law school. The school was 110 years old. Charles was a hypochondriac in his thirties. He was also an incorrigible liar. His friends and his family members used to call him a congenital liar. Charles is still the resident congenital liar in his family. He’s adored just the same. And loved, just the same.
Charles and Vin
" Justice is blind, Vin. If and when I become a good lawyer, I will be able to save myself from the effects of karma. I believe that I’ll be able to even argue my way out of divine justice. Is there such a thing, pare? Is there divine justice?"
" Pare, my boy. Of course there’s divine justice. But let’s not talk about these things. I’m interested in finding out whether you believe in poetic justice.
Charles, naniniwala ka ba sa poetic justice? What will you do in the face of the great big PJ,mate?"
" Vin, I don’t like it when you use the word, mate. Para naman kakosa ang dinig ko diyan sa salita na iyan. Pare, este, panyero, great big PJ ka diyan. Alam mo, listen to this iyang PJ mo is reserved for those na akala ng naghahangad ng PJ para sa isang linalang, na yung linalang na iyon ay mahina ang loob. Granting, V, na target ang isang tao ng mga aso na naulol na just waiting na makapanood ng anong mangyayari sa napili nilang sacrificial lamb para sa poetic justice na ‘ o kay sarap panoorin, lalo na kung nasa sky kingdom ang manonood’ magpapakahirap at magpapakahirap siya na hawiin ang ulap para makapasok sa sky kingdom. Something like that. Do you get me?"
" Sky kingdom? Ano naman iyang sky kingdom mo na iyan?"
" Do you really want to know?"
" Charlie, I remembered something. Nabasa ko noon. " The path of least resistance is usually the most arduous/ardous path." Am I right to assume that you’ve lifted your sky kingdom concept from this? Hindi ko alam. Maxim ‘ata ang tawag sa nabasa ko. Maxim o yung tinatawag na age old adage. Hindi ako sigurado.
" Mali. I lifted the term from YM, pare. Yahoo Messenger, panyero. From some God-fearing Dog loving creature na naka-chat ko, minsan. Vin, pa-bum nga ng isang yosi. I’ve run out. Running on empty na ako sa nikotina. Cliche, ha. Hayaan mo na, hindi pa naman ako abogado. Saka nalang ako mag-aayos."
" ‘Insan, ayaw ko na mag-smoke. God is watching me. Mahirap na ang hindi nag-iingat. Paano kung walang langit at ang lahat ay nasa mundong ito. Ang langit, purgatory, at impiyerno ay nasa mundong ibabaw lang palang lahat. Ayaw kong mabuhay na ako na pala ang sunod sa human lottery, tapos wala akong ka-alam alam. Wala akong kalaban laban. Basta nalang ako a-attend ng function kuno, tapos akong si Totoy Tanga, pagpasok ko, bigla nalang ayun! Isa isa nila akong babatuhin ng hollow block.Patay si Totoy Tanga."
" Uy, nabasa ko rin iyang short story na iyan, nung college. " The Lottery." Scary. Sige, insan. Hindi na ako magyoyosi, kailanman. "
" Sinungaling, ka Charlie. Pati kung saan mo sasayangin ang iyong panata at pangako, sinungaling ka pa rin."
" Vin, God knows when I’m being sincere. But I’ve got the strangest feeling na nagkakamali ang Diyos. We’re made in his image and likeness, hindi mo ba naisip iyon? Kung nagkakamali ang tao at we’re made in God’s image and likeness, eh di, nagkakamali ang Diyos. Maghanap ka nga ng kung anong klaseng fallacy ang mayroon sa kasasabi ko lang?"
" Charles, naniniwala ko. Paniwalang-paniwala ako. Naniniwala ako na you’re truly on your way na talaga. Malapit ka ng maging isang manananggol. H-class."
" Ano naman ang H-class mong iyan, my cousin?"
" Simple. H-class means Hayop class. And in this class, ASO ka."
" I’ll take that as a compliment. Thanks, ‘insan. You’ve made my day. Fly ako ngayon eh. class-B. Bangaw. Kapag narinig ako ng mga Elders, isang SWAT lang ang katapat ko. Unless maawa sa akin ang Langit at i-salba ako ng mga judges. Based on my performance, ba. Talent show ang puwedeng ipangtapat sa actualization ng PJ, DJ, SJ at yung just plain J. Ngunit, matapos mong mag-acrobatics para sa mga judges mo, huli ka pa rin. Posibleng mangyari ang lahat. Matapos ang lahat, wala ka ng makikita, wala ka ng maririnig, hindi ka na makakilos, nawalan ka na ng mga vital organs mo, natadtad ka na’t nachop-chop, dating ang LH mo o LB, last breath..matter of perception, choose your preference, your hear’s going to beat out the letters sa katagang, ‘ Akala mo, ha.’ Puwede rin iyong patatabain ka muna katulad ni Hansel sa Hansel and Gretel, bago ka tamaan ng lintik. Nandiyan rin iyung, magpaka-worker bee ka, para kung naibigan ka ng sky kingdom na gawing queen bee, be the nail that does not stick out as to not be hammered down. Cuz, let’s chat again soon.I have to go to class."
These 2, Charlie and Vin, will not become lawyers. "Lying is my business", is not something that we should teach our children. A fortune cookie gem tells us, " Sin has many tools but a lie is the handle that fits them all."
[ to be continued ]
I’m a hypochondriac in my 30s. The big C is something that we use at home to mean, credit. my aunt’s penchant for writing the word, "impoverished". Poverty is a debilitating disease.