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Chapter 14

Posted by PURPLEYHAN STORIES on Sunday, March 6, 2016


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"Mama..."

Ilang araw na ang nakakalipas nung sinimulan kong basahin at pag-aralan ang lahat ng nakalagay sa chip. Ilang gabi na rin akong umiiyak dahil sa mga nangyari kay Mama nung nandoon siya sa Dungeon. Sobrang sakit makita lahat ng 'yun. Sobrang sakit malaman lahat ng pinagdaanan niya para sa akin.

"Mama," I called.

Nandito ako ngayon sa harap ng puntod niya. Kanina pa ako nakaupo rito dahil gusto ko lang siyang makasama ngayong araw. Gusto kong nasa tabi niya ako ngayon dahil alam kong ilang buwan siyang naging mag-isa nung nasa tiyan niya pa lang ako. I want to return her love for me.

Bigla namang tumulo ang luha ko habang inaalala ang lahat ng 'yun.

"I really admire you, Mama. You're so strong. And even if nobody's talking about you here because they said you were a curse, you will always be my hero. It's just sad that you're not here anymore."

Pinunasan ko ang luha ko pero tuluy-tuloy pa rin silang tumutulo.


Alam kong maswerte pa rin ako dahil kahit papaano ay nagkaroon ako ng magulang dahil sa mama ni Hiro pero gusto ko pa ring maranansan na makasama ang totoo kong nanay. I want to be with my mother. I badly want to see her.

Ang daming what-ifs ngayon sa isip ko. Ang dami kong gustong gawin kasama sina Mama at Papa pero alam kong hinding-hindi na 'yun mangyayari kahit ano pang gawin ko.

"Mama..."

Hindi ko na napigilan ang sarili ko at napahagulgol na ako. Sobrang sakit para sa akin na hindi man lang kami naging buo. Ni hindi man lang niya nakasama ang pamilya niya nang matagal. Kung ganito na kasakit para sa akin, hindi ko maimagine kung gaano kasakit ang naramdaman niya during those times. And what's worse is, ni hindi man lang siya in-acknowledge ng Council at ayaw nilang ilagay ang grave ni Mama kasama ng mga namatay na Senshins during the war. It's really painful and I'm sure ganito rin ang nararamdaman ni Papa lalo na't nakita niya pa mismo ang pagkamatay ni Mama.

"She died in his arms."

Nagulat naman ako nung may narinig akong boses at paglingon ko ay nakita ko si Hiro sa likuran ko. Pinunasan ko ang luha ko at tumayo siya sa gilid ko. This guy, hindi ko na naman siya naramdaman. His movements are getting more and more silent these days.

"How did you know that?" tanong ko sa kanya. Umupo naman siya sa tabi ko at pareho kaming nakatingin sa puntod ni Mama. Nagkalat ang green roses sa paligid ng puntod niya at alam kong galing 'yun kay Papa at sa mga kaibigan niya.


"I don't know," he said and I saw the sadness in his eyes. "These past few months, I've been recollecting some unfamiliar memories."

Nagulat ako nung bigla siyang tumingin sa akin at ngayon ko lang nakita ang expression na 'to mula sa kanya. He looks conflicted and burdened.

Hiro's been carrying a lot of burden, that I know, for sure. Before I came to this school, he's been the leader figure of the Atama family and in addition, he's carrying the name of the President since he's known as his son. He looks confident and tough but he's still young just like the rest of us. He's still human.

"I'll listen," sabi ko sa kanya. Napatingin siya sa akin at saglit siyang ngumiti.

"There are memories inside my head that keeps on appearing even though I'm not that familiar with them. It seems like I subconsciously pushed them away to the farthest place on my mind but they're slowly coming back."

Kinutuban naman ako sa narinig ko at bigla akong nagka-idea kung about saan 'yun.

"Memories from the war?" I asked and he nodded.

"Memories when I was still a kid."

"So nakalimutan mo ang mga 'yun at ngayon ay naaalala mo na. Maybe the last war triggered it."

Naging tahimik kami bigla and for a second, hiniling ko na sana meron din akong sixth sense ni Hiro. I want to remember my last moments with my mother.

"But it's not that bad, isn't it?" sabi ko naman. "People easily forget distant memories, unlike you."

"But remembering is just as worse as forgetting."

Napahinto ako sa pagsasalita nung narinig ko 'yun. I want to slap myself for being so insensitive. Maybe there are things that he doesn't want to remember.

"It's okay," sabi naman niya. Reading my mind again, huh.

"So, what memories bother you?"

Napabuntong-hininga naman siya at nakikita kong nagdadalawang-isip pa siya kung sasabihin niya o hindi. Okay lang naman kung hindi. It's not easy to share your personal experiences even to the people who are closest to you.

"I was carried by someone. His whole body was bleeding and I can hear myself crying. I saw the President's face. The man holding me was saying something to him..." Biglang naputol ang pagsasalita niya at nakita kong tumutulo na ang luha niya. I don't know why but I can feel his pain, as if I'm also there. Hindi ko namalayan na umiiyak na rin pala ako.


"Your father," sabi ko dahil alam kong siya 'yun dahil sa kwento ni Papa dati.

"He said I should always protect Mom. For him."

"You did." Napatingin siya sa akin at ngumiti ako sa kanya.

"Then I saw a dying woman." I froze when I heard that. Halos lumubog ang puso ko dahil alam ko kung sino ang tinutukoy niya. "I can't remember all the things she said but she died smiling. I remember being soaked in the rain in the arms of your father. His cries filled the place. After that, my memories become hazy and I can't remember anything anymore."

Napatingin ulit ako sa puntod ni Mama at hindi ko akalaing namatay siya nang nakangiti. Really, how strong are you, Mama? I can't believe she managed to put a smile on her face after all the sufferings she experienced. Then I realized, it must be because of my father. After all, they were together until the end.

Naawa naman ako kay Hiro dahil nakahawak na siya sa ulo niya after that. Remembering is just as worse as forgetting, huh. He must be so confused and hurt right now.

Tumayo naman ako at pumwesto sa harapan niya. Umupo ako para maging magka-level kami at napatingin siya sa akin. Hinawakan ko ang magkabilang sentido niya.

"Kapag masakit ang ulo ko o 'di kaya naman masyado akong maraming iniisip, ito ang laging ginagawa ng Mama mo sa akin dati." I carefully massaged his head to relax his mind. "Close your eyes," I ordered because his stares make me uncomfortable.

"I don't want to," sabi niya kaya napahinto ako. "Looking into your eyes made me feel better."

Tinigilan ko na ang pagmamassage sa kanya at tumayo na ako sabay talikod sa kanya. Naramdaman ko rin ang pagtayo niya at nagulat ako nung bigla niya akong niyakap mula sa likuran. His arms enveloped my shoulders and he laid his head on my left shoulder.

"Thank you," he whispered. Tinapik ko lang ang kamay niya as my reply and we stayed like that for a few seconds. After that ay humiwalay na siya at umupo ulit kami sa harap ng puntod ni Mama at tumahimik for several minutes.

Bigla namang may nagvibrate sa bulsa ko kaya kinuha ko 'yun. Pagtingin ko ay may message si Darwin.

Dear Rainie,

We're going to have another meeting. This time, bring your most trusted team. Let's see each other at the Yllka Shrine three days from now.

Darwin

"Magkakaroon ulit ng assembly," sabi ko kay Hiro.

"For what?"

"I don't know. Sabi lang ni Darwin, dalhin ko raw ang team ko."

"When? Where?"

"Yllka Shire. Three days from now."

"You should inform those four immediately."

"Okay."

"Our truce might be turning into an alliance, finally."

"Hmm?" Hindi ko masyadong narinig ang sinabi niya pero nginitian niya lang ako.

"Nothing," sabay tayo niya at in-offer niya ang kamay niya sa akin. "Let's go. It's getting dark." Inabot ko ang kamay niya at tinulungan niya akong tumayo pero hindi niya binitiwan 'yun.

"What?" he asked.

"Nothing."

And then we walked together.


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