COME here. mga apo. You want me to state you a narrative? Then you must come nearer. and sit at my pess. Don’t interrupt me. as my memory is every bit fugitive as the summer zephyr. and you may happen that an interrupted narrative is worse than no narrative at all. I had been stating you war narratives before. of things that happened to your male parent and to your father’s male parent. who was my brother. Now. what I am traveling to state you is a small different. but something that you will hopefully retrieve when you find the demand for this memory.
I WAS the 3rd boy of Francisco. a town hall clerk. and Carmencita. a homemaker. in a little town called Canda. someplace south in Bukidnon. It is far from here. really far. To travel at that place. you have to go by ship or aeroplane. and by coach for more than 12 hours. We lived in a little house. made smaller by the fact that there were three boies. all non far apart in age. Fernando was the oldest. Alejandro. your gramps. followed after a twelvemonth. so. me. hardly a twelvemonth subsequently every bit good. After that. Nanay merely declared she would non acquire pregnant once more. and so she didn’t. We were rambunctious as all male childs are. and it was all that Nanay could make to maintain us in topographic point. We had no family aid. and aside from our three cats. five kitties. two Canis familiariss. a flock of poulets and two hogs. we merely had Apo. Nanay’s male parent. Apo was 84. but he was still agile and lively. He would wake up early every forenoon. bestir us out of bed. nag us to make our chores—scrubbing the floor. irrigating the workss. feeding the animate beings. among other things—and would so sit in the gallery the whole twenty-four hours. whiffing on a involute betel foliage. ptyalizing out the ruddy sludge into a little can beside him.
Frequently. I would sit with Apo and he would state me stuff about the war and the times that his household had to go forth their place in the center of the dark. as the barrage and the bombardment started in their town. There were times. every bit good. when Apo talked about the “not-like-ours. ” his term for the supernatural. He had seen a kapre. he said. he had besides been friendly with a dwende. and had witnessed a manananggal rolling its wings. I spent so much clip with Apo that my brothers picked on me invariably. naming me a pantywaist. That was their favourite twit. for they knew I hated to be called that. Was it my mistake so that sometimes I liked Apo’s company better than theirs? I was no wimp—I played their games and excelled at some. I was the best when it came to playing with marbles and cipher could catch me when we were playing ticket. but I did non like runing which was one of their favourite interests. I loved birds. and I hated to see them ache. I cried one time when I saw Fernando hit a Mayan in the thorax. the hapless bird falling from a branch—merely amazed or dead. I didn’t know. I ran off before they could see my cryings.
But—I let them be. I worried that they would badger me even more if I chided them about aching birds. I refused to travel runing with them—after all. I was still the unchallenged title-holder and had the biggest marble aggregation in town. One twenty-four hours. when Fernando was 14. Alejandro 13. and I. 12. Tatay came place with bad intelligence. The organic structure of Budok. a husbandman from another barangay. was found that forenoon. It was mangled beyond acknowledgment. and merely the guitar embossed with his name. lying merely a few pess off. and his apparels. identified him. A immature male child who was looking for his Canis familiaris found the carnal whiffing the organic structure behind a bamboo bunch non far from town. Harmonizing to Tatay. it was the 2nd such slaying in two months. but they had non worried before because the first victim was a alien and the slaying had taken topographic point in Antil. a town a day’s walk off. What was fagot. Tatay said. was that person pulled out Budok’s ( and the stranger’s ) internal variety meats.
Harmonizing to the physician. neither a bola tie nor a knife was used for the offense. which didn’t make sense at all for that would intend that the individual used his custodies. and how could a brace of custodies do the harm it did? Apo was at his usual topographic point in the gallery. listening to Tatay. but hearing that the liquidator used his custodies. he stood up and came nearer to us. “He used his custodies. eh? ” he said. sitting following to Tatay in the sala. “That’s right. Tay. ” my male parent answered. keeping Nanay’s custodies. “But the physician is still analyzing the organic structure and speaking to the medical examiner from Antil. He’ll have a full study shortly. ” “Is it Doc Morales? ” When my male parent nodded. Apo surprised us all when he stood up and went outdoors. “I’m traveling to see him. ” When Apo came back late that dark. he was remarkably soundless. He didn’t eat supper with us. and merely stayed in his room. We heard him rummaging in his kaban one time or twice. and so all was quiet. “What’s he making? ” Alejandro asked.
Cipher answered. It was a grave dinner. with Tatay and Nanay silent. thought. possibly of the slaying. and Apo non at that place to castigate us for non making our jobs good. “Maybe he’s smoke once more. set uping his betel axial rotations in that wooden thorax of his. ” said Fernando who didn’t think much of Apo. Before I could believe of a retort. Apo came out of his room. In his manus was a long bronze sticker. easy a pes in length. and a piece of fabric. He sat at his usual topographic point in the tabular array and polished the blade. unmindful to the five braces of eyes gazing at him in amazement. “Tay. what’s that? ” Nanay asked. non make bolding to believe that her beloved. normally harmless male parent was now keeping a deadly arm. “That’s a nice piece of work. I don’t see many bronzy stickers presents. ” Tatay said. look up toing the thickness and the shininess of the metal.
“What are you traveling to make with it. Tay? ” Apo put down the blade and faced all of us. no longer the blabbering. betel-smoking old dodo. but a strong. wise adult male about to leave wisdom to his brethren. “We are non covering with something ordinary here. ” he said. “Where? ” Fernando interrupted. Tatay shushed him and gestured for Apo to go on. “I’ve been to Doc Morales. The coroner’s study from Antil arrived already. and his findings matched that of Doc Morales’s: it was done by a adult female. ” at this. he held up a manus as we all tried to inquire him at the same clip how the physicians knew. “And personally. I know who did it. ”
At this point. he paused dramatically. and when he spoke. it was hardly a susurration. “It was done by the not-like-ours. ” Nobody spoke. Not even Fernando whose credulity. I was certain. was already stretched to its bound. I think it was because Apo sounded truly baleful. It was a alleviation so to hear Tatay inquire Apo how they arrived at the decision. and what type of animal did Apo believe the perpetrator was. To my surprise. Apo turned to me. “You retrieve the narratives I told you. Ton? ” I nodded. “Uh-huh. But which? ”
“About the manlalayug. ” he said. and I nodded once more. inquiring what the connexion was. “You see. ” Apo continued. “The other twenty-four hours. I was merely stating Tonyo about a animal called the manlalayug. and that’s why I got leery when I heard you describe the organic structure. It occurred to me that I have seen that type of slaying before so I went to the doctor’s to see if we could happen strands of a woman’s hair and pieces of broken nail to turn out my intuition. ” “But given that you do happen those points which you say you did. how could you conclude that it was the manlalayug for certain? ” Tatay asked. He was seeking to still Nanay’s custodies which were nervously contorting the tablecloth off the dining tabular array. Apo leaned into Tatay’s face. “You know Budok? ” Tatay nodded. “He’s immature. isn’t he? And strong? ” Tatay nodded once more. “How. so. can a adult female claw his face and draw out his internal variety meats with her ain custodies? How can you explicate that? ” “But she may hold used a blunt instrument like a spoon!
Or she may non be entirely. or. or…” Tatay trailed off in mid-sentence when he saw Apo’s face. Apo was agitating his caput. and he looked sad. and non a small afraid. “Nobody believes in them any longer. ” he whispered. “And it will be our deaths…” “Wait. Tay. state us. delight. What’s a manlalayug? We truly don’t know. ” Apo looked at each of us in the oculus. so turned his dorsum. When he spoke. his voice was really low ( as if he was afraid of being heard ) and we all had to tilt frontward to catch his words. “When I was merely a small older than Fernando here. ” he said. “a manlalayug came to our town. She managed to kill five work forces within five months before one eventually succeeded in halting her. “A manlalayug is a animal that possesses particular powers.
Once she is runing. killing her becomes a challenge. for she transforms into a really beautiful adult female who will surely utilize her considerable appeal to weaken a man’s will. “The manlalayug prowls at dark. and Hunts for work forces who are entirely. Once a adult male is wholly enraptured by her. she will wrestle him to the land. for she has extraordinary strength. and she will eat his internal variety meats. “And that is non merely her power. She will besides gull your head. It was said that there were work forces who did non come under her enchantment but still died because when they met face to face. they merely stabbed her. the adult female they were confronting. non cognizing that it was merely her image. The existent her was behind them. ” “But how can you kill her so? ” Alejandro interrupted.
“Stab backwards. ” I said. before Apo could talk. “For even if you don’t see her existent organic structure. it is at that place. behind you. ” Apo looked at me. approvingly. I thought. “Yes. Tonyo is right. You should knife backwards. If it is the right metal. like this bronze blade. one time is adequate. Then you should run. and run for all you’re worth. for even a deceasing manlalayug can cuss you with her last breath. And that will be the terminal of you. ” Nobody radius. and the air was full of fright and admiration. I thought. for the extent of Apo’s cognition that we had merely seen at this minute. “But who was the adult male that killed the manlalayug in your town? And you didn’t state me about this before. Tay. ” Nanay was glowering. but she has let travel of the tablecloth. and was now abstractedly flattening it. Apo sighed and looked at the sticker. turning it this manner and that.
He didn’t speak for a piece. and we all thought he wasn’t traveling to reply Nanay when he eventually spoke. “I didn’t Tell you because there was no ground to. I ne’er thought this would go on once more. ” he said. He looked at Nanay. “The adult male who killed her was my male parent. your gramps. who I told you died of malaria when I was 15. ” It seemed that my great-grandfather managed so. to injure the manlalayug. Unfortunately. he didn’t leave until the adult female seemed dead. “She cursed him. ” Apo said. “telling him that he will decease before the month was to stop. ”
Our great-lolo died within a hebdomad. but non before stating his fifteen-year-old boy everything that he knew about the monster he bested. He gave him the sticker to maintain. every bit good. reminding him that he should follow his father’s footfalls should the same thing go on once more. But he was already excessively old. excessively old. Apo was agitating his caput. looking at the arm in his custodies wistfully. “That’s why I took out this sticker. in instance person is willing to run the manlalayug. She won’t be coming out until the following full Moon. so we have clip to fix. ” Tatay stood up. raking his manus through his hair. “How can we state the city manager. or the constabulary. about this? They’ll laugh at us. ” “Then don’t. ”
“But… we can’t allow her putting to death once more. if so. it is a manlalayug! ” Apo sighed. “Isko. we can’t allow the governments do everything. ” “So what do you propose we make? I can’t really good make it. if that’s what you’re proposing! ” Tatay was glowering at Apo. and Apo was glowering back. “And why non? You are still immature and strong…”
“Tay! ” Nanay was ferocious. She stood up and faced Apo. “How can you state that? We have three kids! And what are the constabulary at that place for? ” Nanay was about shouting. and Tatay had to quiet her and take her to their sleeping room. Apo looked at us. “Sometimes we have to be brave. my male childs. ” Then. he. excessively. went to his room. The following forenoon. nil was said of the incident. Apo did non speak about the manlalayug. and neither did my parents. But there was a tenseness in the air as the hebdomads passed. and the doomed dark neared. On Thursday. the dark before the full Moon. Alejandro brought up the topic while we were in bed. “Do you think she’ll work stoppage once more? ” he said.
Fernando harrumphed. “It’s merely one of Apo’s narratives. You wan na stake nil will go on tomorrow? ” “How can you state that? ” I protested. “Apo was stating the truth! You saw his face when he was stating us about his male parent. How can you merely disregard it? ” “Way to travel. Tonyo! We didn’t cognize you truly believed that! ” Alejandro said. He whispered something to Fernando and they laughed. Within minutes. they were intoning. “Sissy! Sissy! Sissy! ” Desiring to strike back. I muttered. “You merely don’t want to confront her. You’re merely afraid you’ll be her following victim. ” Fernando sat up and brought his face near to mine. “So. you’re non afraid. huh? Well. weather male child. why don’t you take Apo’s sticker and happen the manlalayug yourself? ” Find the manlalayug? What a brainsick thought! She’d have boys like me for breakfast. and still hold room for more! I turned my dorsum on Fernando and kept silent. But my brothers guessed the ground for my silence. and resumed their intonation one time more. marking it with hushings.
Feeling their shots bite. and recognizing that the lone manner to halt their mockery was for me to hold to what they wanted me to make. I about shouted. “Yes. yes. I’ll do it. I’ll kill her. ” The words had been empty. but when I said them. I realized that I truly had to make it. non for my brothers nor for myself. but for my male parent. If I would non travel. and the manlalayug claimed another victim tomorrow. Tatay would be forced to run her himself. despite what Nanay had to state because he would experience duty-bound. I couldn’t—I wouldn’t—imagine what would go on if he failed. Alejandro touched my arm. all of a sudden remorseful. “We didn’t truly intend that. Ton. We were merely badgering. ” I turned to Alejandro. and told him. steadfastly. I hoped. “No. I’ll go. Otherwise. Tatay has to. and you know Nanay is already huffy at Apo for stating he has to make it. ”
My brothers realized so what I had already understood. and they. excessively. were soundless. Fernando slung his arm around my shoulders and said. existent quietly. “Are you certain you can make it. Ton? ” I looked at him in the eyes and said. merely as quietly. “Yes. ” The following twenty-four hours. my brothers were remarkably quiet. believing possibly of what I had to make that dark. When Apo went to his usual topographic point in the gallery. they helped me look for the bronze sticker in Apo’s sleeping room. We found it on top of his apparels in the kaban. and we hid it in my cupboard. Cipher was able to eat dinner. and though my parents were greatly puzzled for my brothers and I were normally rapacious feeders no affair what the nutrient was. They did non remark. lost in their ain ideas as good. We said good dark. and my brothers and I laid down on the mat. all tense and waiting for the clip that I could safely go forth the house. When we were certain that our parents and Apo were asleep. we rose. I took out the sticker from the cupboard and tucked it into the girdle of my bloomerss. “Better carry it. ” Fernando whispered. “So you are ready anytime. ”
Alejandro hugged me. I patted his dorsum. stating I would be back before they knew it. I was down the stepss already when Fernando tried to draw me back inside the house. “Ton. don’t do it. Please! You’ll acquire yourself killed. ” I pulled out of his appreciation and said. “I won’t. I’ll take attention. ” Then I ran. ran into the broad streets. and onto the unfastened Fieldss that lay between us and the town proper. I reached the town in 10 proceedingss. Tired by my tally. I plopped down on a bench in the place contemplating my following action. Should I pass the whole dark at that place? The bench was cold. and after my tally. the air was chilly. I merely had a thin T-shirt. and a brace of short bloomerss ( good for running. I thought so ) . and though I was accustomed to cold conditions. the air that dark was particularly seize with teething. I was shuddering within proceedingss. My bosom was crushing quickly. I seemed to be the lone one awake in the whole town. and I was sitting in the center of the place with merely the bronze sticker to soothe me. I looked about and everything was in sunglassess of grey. Some chiropterans screeched and a few crickets chirped but. otherwise. I was entirely. and I could hear noises. noises that my nocturnal comrades did non do. I was hearing the noises of the dark. and it seemed to come from everyplace. yet from nowhere.
I all of a sudden had a name for what I felt—fear. And it was fear that easy filled my whole being. Finally. I couldn’t take it anymore—the chiropterans. the cold. the grey forms that seemed to be traveling toward me. and the arrant hush of everything around me. I stood up and began to run back place. call on the carpeting myself for the folly of my pride. and cussing my brothers for coercing me to turn out my maleness. On my manner back. passing by the first rice field. I realized that nil stirred. I slowed down to a walk and listened. Not a individual chaff of rice moved. non a individual cricket chirped. I remember believing that it was excessively unagitated. excessively still. I was midway through the 2nd rice field when I detected motion in front of me. I hoped to God that it was merely one of my brothers. or our neighbour Pilo the rummy. or anybody except the one I thought it would be.
I was already sudating abundantly. though my thenars were cold. My clasp on the sticker slipped more than a few times. and I had to fumble for it on the land since I did non desire to take my eyes off from what might be in forepart of me. I all of a sudden realized that everything was going really. really existent. My brothers and their daring were a million old ages off. This was reality—me keeping a cold piece of metal. in the center of nowhere. shuddering because of the cold and because of something traveling in forepart of me that I couldn’t see. This was my world. and I was deathly afraid. I considered what to do—go back to the town and aftermath person up to attach to me back place. or travel in front? I was standing indecisively when the affair was taken from my custodies. I saw her. merely a few stairss me. looking rather suddenly—all adult female. all flesh. Her motions were graceful. and her hair was really. really long. traveling with a life of its ain. tracking after her like a black luminescent gown.
And she was looking at me. and she seemed to see deep into my psyche. I knew at that minute that it was her—the manlalayug I had been waiting for and desiring to run. But cognizing that it was her did non halt my turning involvement for her. I let her acquire closer. fascinated by the manner she walked. She was gliding. and her pess did non touch the land. of that I could’ve sworn. When she was nigh adequate to touch me. she reached out her manus and. blindly. I took it. It was soft. so soft. and I could smell her. the aroma of the air current and the sea. Slowly. she pulled me against her soft organic structure. I was lost. I could experience it. I was traveling to return her embracing when my sticker nicked me. merely a small. in the arm and I woke as if from a dream. and saw what was confronting me.
Without believing. I stabbed her in the thorax. difficult. conveying down the bronze arm into her beautiful bosom with my two custodies. To my surprise. my blade passed through her organic structure into thin air. and I about stumbled. What the… ? Then I remembered. and in my head Apo was shouting. She’s behind you! She’s behind you! Stab backwards! Griping the metal with all the strength my 12-year-old organic structure could rally. I drove the sticker backwards. non surprised this clip. when I encountered house flesh. which rapidly yielded and buried my blade to the hilt. The image in forepart of me vanished. and when I turned about. there she was. the manlalayug. wrestling with hurting. seizing her tummy. as she tried to squelch the flowing of her blood. In seconds. her speckless gown turned red. I ran and ne’er looked back.
I found my brothers awake and waiting for me by the door. They told me they were approximately to wake up my parents and state them what happened. Then they saw my bloody arm and custodies. and the blade still dripping with the manlalayug’s blood. Fernando ran to our parents’ sleeping room and banged for all he was deserving. and they came out. Apo came out. and they saw what I had done. All of us went back to the topographic point where I fought the manlalayug. each of us conveying a arm but the manlalayug was no longer at that place.
All that remained was a puddle of blood. dark and baleful in the moonshine. The following forenoon. the whole town searched for a hurt adult female. and even the local functionaries were persuaded to fall in the Hunt one time we told them what happened. But we didn’t happen her. Nor was any adult female reported to hold died in the following few yearss. But the violent deaths stopped after that. And to my brothers. and even to the other kids. I was no longer Tonyo the Wimp. Overnight. I had become Tonyo the Brave—and that was the name I became known for. for the remainder of my life.
YES. yes. that was a nice narrative. my beloveds. a nice narrative. But there are no more narratives like that. Tomorrow. I’ll tell you alternatively about how the river Polangi came to be. It. excessively. is a nice narrative. Now. you go on up. it’s already tardily. Lolo Tonyo is tired. and you all have to travel to school tomorrow. Good dark. good dark.