Tag Archives: love

Jilted One

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My friend posted this on Facebook, said he found this on the street while walking. He asked us to write a story behind it. Here’s my attempt at it. ūüôā

Dictated by circumstance, two lovers were forced to be separated by distance, with the girl working abroad and the staying in the Philippines. Over the years, they kept in touch with each other through Skype and Facebook, updating each other with their¬†lives through social media. “I’ll see you soon” was their goodbye and their kisses, their hugs, were expressed in emoticons. It would have to do.

Eventually, the time came when the girl was about to return to the Philippines. “I’m returning next week,” said the girl. It was such on short notice that the guy was caught off guard, that he couldn’t sleep at night. It’s been three years already and, at last, they would see each other again.

Smelling of perfume and fresh after shave, he waited at the spot where they last held their date, before she left. He was holding a bouquet of roses, her favorites.

Trying to distract himself, he kept fiddling with his phone, checking his news feed. Suddenly, he felt a light tap on his shoulders.

It was her.

Her hair might have grown longer than he can remember but he was sure it was her. No one had a smile as bright as hers. Only, it felt like there was something in it. Something was off.

“Hey there.”
“Hey,” they greeted each other awkwardly. This wasn’t the meeting he was expecting.
“I have something to tell you,” said the girl, as she placed her hand on his right arm.
“Tell me later. I reserved a table for us at your favorite restaurant.”
“No, I have to tell you now. You see, I ran into a problem with the Immigration.”
“What? You didn’t tell me about that. What happened?”
“Let me finish. Please. I… I was scared and desperate. I couldn’t go back here, I still had to help my family. I didn’t have a choice. I…”
“What is it?”
“I had no choice. I…”
Then, a tall man arrived, kissed her on the lips, and said, “Is this him? Hi, I’m Kit,” he greeted, his voice thick with British accent.
“Kinasal kami.”

He should have known. He couldn’t breathe. He didn’t know how to react.

“Ahh sige. Ah, may kailangan pala akong puntahan. Paalam.”

He turned his back on her, his future. Or so he thought. He walked as fast as he could. When he was as far away from her as he could, he slammed the bouquet on the ground. He didn’t care if people were looking at him. He was a scorned man, he felt he had the right to be angry. He couldn’t believe he wasted all those years. He was devastated. He was too distracted, so much so that he didn’t notice the car coming his way when he crossed the street.

“But I hope you’re happy,” he thought. He closed his eyes as he lay on the ground, blood flowing from the back of his head. The people surrounding him were growing in number, as they tried to take a look at the man who lost everything.

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Awit sa Gabi

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Ngayong malalim na ang gabi,
nakadungaw pa rin sa bintana,
Hinihintay ang iyong pagbalik.

Halika na. Umuwi ka na.
(Naririnig mo ba ang aking awit?)

Iiwan kong nakabukas ang ilaw,
ang mga bintana,
para ika’y salubungin
kung ikaw man ay dumating.
(Hindi kita iiwan.)

Saan ka na ngayon?
Nalunod ka ba sa liwanag ng mga bituin?

A little bit

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I still keep the stress ball you gave me. You gave it to me at the right time, just when I was panicking about the major test I was about to have in the next few hours then. In the middle of cramming, we got together and had lunch. My mind was drifting off to the test topics I was trying to remember when you called me back to consciousness and showed me what you nicked from the org room. “It was lying there and I secretly got it. It reminded me of you.” You smiled and, immediately, all the voices in my head started to hush. A certain calm took over me and it was one that I needed. You gave it to me.¬†You were always the calm one.

So, tell me, even after all the neverending conversations, stolen glances, and secret smiles, you never felt anything for me?

MIA

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When I told you how I felt about you, this was the thing I feared the most–the awkwardness, that silence preceding how we would eventually drift apart. You see, that was one of the things I was thinking of, when I was having an internal debate on whether I should do it or not. In the end, I did. And now, we’re here.

In your letter, you told me how you would understand me if I would stay away from you for a while, for me to “let my feelings fade.” Then,¬†when the feelings are gone, we can go back to being the kind of friends we were before. We’d go back to normal. I hope it was that easy, how taking some time off from each other would erase what happened (or didn’t happen) between us. But the thing is, it can’t.

There are times when I wish I didn’t tell you that I liked you. If I didn’t, maybe we wouldn’t be in this situation. Maybe we wouldn’t be walking on broken glass, careful to say words that might hurt the other (or at least hint at how hurt we–or, at least, I–are). This is what the time off from each other is for, for both of us to heal. Or, for the most part, for me to heal, to move on. You already told me you only see me as your best friend. Even though I would’ve prefered you tell me how much you like me too, that’s still better than nothing. I can live with that. At least I know I hold a special place in your heart.

Even though it’s only been a few days since we last talked, I realized how being MIA won’t help us that much. We’ve opened a Pandora’s Box of some sort. We can’t go back to how we were before; we can’t undo what was done nor pretend it didn’t happen because it did. By the time we see each other again for coffee after a period of being absent from each other’s lives, I bet the feelings would come rushing in. All those weeks spent in covering up the dust left by unrequited feelings and unreturned ones will probably go to waste. In that single moment, by the time I see you and your dazzling smile, I know how my heart will beat twice its regular rhythm, like it’s been conditioned to be that way whenever you’re there. Or maybe, it won’t beat that fast but I know there will be a whisper in my ear, saying, “That’s the guy you loved.”

So, I think it’s best if we let time take the reins. No complete detachment for both of us. We can still talk to each other, ask how we’re doing, have random conversations that made me fall for you in the first place. It will be awkward at the start, I know, but isn’t that how we started as friends? Maybe, in time, the feeling will fade, you might learn to like¬†me, or¬†we will still be hurting for both of our loves that were unreturned. But at least we didn’t drift apart. Did I tell you how I have the bad habit of¬†just letting my friendships fade?

People ask me what makes you different from the others. I always tell them that what we had was based on a solid friendship, one we carefully built without the prying eyes of others. It is one which grew from a common love of Fall Out Boy and all the other bands and songs we spent listening to, each song bringing up different memories from both of us.¬†It is a relationship which was a result of seeing each other’s vulnerabilities and secrets, and accepting them without hesitations.

And I guess that’s why I won’t let this friendship fade. I’ll hold on to you, to us. You can tell me to let go (for a while) but I won’t. I choose not to. For now, let me be a friend, if that’s all I can ever be.

Temper

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“Patay! Nakita niya yung¬†bad¬†side ko!”¬†(Shit! She saw my bad side!)

You told me that when I talked to you after you guys lost.¬†Of course, that’s one of the things you were worrying about.¬†With the referee making bad calls and some members of the opposing team playing it rough, you couldn’t help but make a short outburst while on court. On the side, she was watching the game, too. It was her first basketball game.¬†She had no idea about basketball.

In my head, I would’ve told you, “It doesn’t matter.” If I were her, I would’ve liked to see more of that side–the things that make you tick, what annoys you, how and when you get angry. Your bad side is what makes you you, along with the good. Without them, I don’t think you would become the person I have learned to love. You were enough.

I accept you, for all that you are. But I know it is not my acceptance you’re yearning for.

Stoichiometry

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Once, I thought it was enough to have one thing in common–music, books, movies, food. I believed it was enough to fill the void that exists between two people.

Opposites attract.

They complement each other.

But then you realize, it isn’t. There are silences that weigh you down, heavy enough to open your eyes to make you realize that no, it takes more than that. Chemistry, maybe? I don’t know.

***

I didn’t expect that a simple car ride would end up to mean a lot to me. When that song started playing and the first few verses reminded me of Patrick, I couldn’t help but ask, “Homesick at Space camp?” No, it wasn’t that song but seeing you smile so wide, surprised that someone other than you knew about that, made me realize that I made the right guess, the right answer, to a question I didn’t know I was asking that time.

And so we talked about Fall Out Boy. Believe me, I was as surprised as you are, when I found out you liked their old songs. I didn’t really know anyone else who did aside from my high school friends. That was the band that got me closer to them and now, it’s doing the same thing by getting us closer, providing topics for our late-night chats.¬†Do you know this one? Were you shocked when they got back from hiatus? Name your top 5 favorite FOB songs. How about this other band, do you like them?¬†We could talk about them for days.

They say one common similarity could only take you so far and I wondered how long we could keep this up. We did, though. It’s been a month since I gave you that link and watched their concert together, we’re still here. We still keep each other up at night, way up, that I wonder how much time you have to be doing this while keeping up with school.¬†Or who else you’re talking to.¬†I didn’t even think we would be talking to each other, that we would have something to talk about since you seemed quiet, the basketball player everyone likes (I was right about that, to some extent) so I was surprised–and still am–that we hit it off.

***

You like sports. I like literature.

Kobe was your God. I think LeBron can beat him anytime.

You said you didn’t like Lizzie McGuire. Hilary Duff was my role model when I was an awkward teenager.

Norah was good for Barney, you told me. I think she was overbearing.

You pointed out how we seemed to not like the same things. Of course, I began to worry. How couldn’t I? It could mean how we’re not compatible. It could be a big roadblock. Yet, I realized how it was more interesting that way. ¬†I like reading the passion in your messages whenever you try to tell me why you’re into those things, convincing me to believe it as well.¬†I almost did, especially after you gave me 5 supporting statements as to why Kobe Bryant is the greatest NBA player of all time.

***

In a balanced chemical reaction, the relations among quantities of reactants and products typically form a ratio of positive integers.

I guess that’s also the reason why two positives repel each other; a positive and a negative attract each other. There is no one without the other. You can’t always agree on everything; you need something to spur a discussion. Ironically, those differences are the ones building the bridges between us, our similarities providing the scaffolding. I hope that as we get to know each other, we learn to accept this even more. I can’t wait to hear more about you and I can’t wait to tell you more about me. I just hope you’ll let me.

Did I tell you how watching a movie together while being in different places is part of my bucket list? Isn’t it funny how we were watching Landon cross things off Jamie’s List in “A Walk to Remember” and, in the process, you checked something off mine?

 

coffee (n.)

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Late-night conversations and spontaneous movie viewing with you always seem to be the highlight of my day. We can talk for endless hours non-stop that I begin to wonder if this is how it feels to have time stop for you, for our little secret, for us. Before we know it, it’s already 4 o’clock in the morning and it’s time to sleep. We don’t need to worry, though. We know that when night falls, the honesty of the late hour draping over us, we know we can find each other again.¬†You keep me up at night and I don’t mind.