Free



She was scanning the books on the shelf. A page from one scrapbook fell. She picked it up and a smile crossed her face. Like in the movies she hugged the page close to her chest and closed her eyes. Dust found their way into her nostrils and she began to sneeze unceasingly. A cat mewed behind the shelves and drove her out of the room for fear of the devil and hell itself. She laughed hard as her feet got caught in a broomstick thrown across the door. "You witch!" she screamed at her cousin arranging vases in another room. "Gee, what hell brought you out of the library?!" her cousin yelled back. "This!!" she threw the crumpled paper towards the other woman. Picking the almost torn to pieces brown paper her cousin's brows curled as she sneezed. "Whoa! you found it!!" The broom found its way to the other woman's feet as they began to run out of the door giggling and shouting sweet profanities.



     "I'm sorry, I'm sorry!!!" Vernice gasped as she clung to Alice's skirt. Alice looked into Vernice's blushing face and was about to pull her hair jokingly when they heard someone cough behind them. "You two never changed," "What is it this time?" Alice turned around and confirmed her guess. It was him and she collapsed into Vernice's arms as her energy waned.Vernice's hold on the brown paper got loose and the paper flew right into the man's nose. He sneezed and the paper magically fell into his hands. He raised them and saw the words- "I love you! I have always loved you and I will always love you." Sincerely,....the paper was cut after the last word. "Please help me carry her!" Vernice called out to the man who was shocked to realize he was actually immobile for several seconds. Who loved who? He carried Alice in his arms to her room beside the library on the second floor of their ancestral home. As he walked up the stairs and stared into her pale face memories of the past flooded his thoughts.

     Vernice was jumping carelessly to the hall  as Alice ran after her. He was watching them from the main entrance of the huge house unnoticed. They were in their early teens then and his heart throbbed as he saw Alice's smile trying to grab a paper from Vernice. Vernice entered the library, locked the door and when she came out Alice was in tears begging Vernice to give her back the paper. It was the day they all were supposed to leave the province to study in the city. Neighbors since kids they grew up very close to each other, no secrets, no dreams left hidden, or so he thought, or so they thought. 

     Alice opened her eyes. She was in the arms of Hector, like in her dreams each night. Was she dreaming? She moved her toes and then her fingers. No she was awake and indeed he was staring deep into her soul. She raised her hands and from her right hand 2 pieces of tiny paper fell...it bore their names, Dear Hector....Alice....He drew out a sigh...it was him, it was him she has always loved. He thought it was someone else and he thought and he thought it was all just in his imagination when he caught her staring at him each time.

     "Father....Father Hector..." Alice managed to open her lips and utter the words to the man in white robe beside her. "Forgive me for I have sinned...these are my sins.." Vernice looking at the two people she loved most in her life kept her tears from falling. Alice wanted to go home to this town where they grew up if only to spend her last days and strength to be with the only man she has ever loved. She found him, again at last. And cherished the thought that at least now he knows, now he knows that she loved him and gave him to the Lord....she closed her eyes smiling.


     Amen. Hector made the sign of the cross on her grave and dug his shoes on the wet grass. For the first time he felt he knew who he was. He felt free.Vernice touched his colored sleeve, he has left his vows. He faced her. She rested her head on his shoulders as they walked closely together away from Alice's grave. Alice whom they both loved dearly to hurt....she wont be hurt anymore they knew it in their hearts and now they are free....finally to love each other and to face the world...



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~from my humble world to yours~
for more short stories from The Letters In November please click here 
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Kulasa

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7 comments

  1. when will i be free too? lol! labyew!!!

    i have come into a conclusion that i don't really miss the person i used to love. what i do miss are the memories we had together. given a choice, i will still marry M in my next life. :P

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  2. wow its been a long since i've read something like this! romantic and sweet brings back high school days haha

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  3. Another wonderful composition! Makes me grab a novel right now and be back to my reading habit. :)

    I love the photos you used; beautiful!

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  4. Another marvelous story, kakainlove magbasa.

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  5. I thought it was Alice and Hector at the end, but oh well! It brings back high school memories :))

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  6. I can relate to the story. LOL. Another good read sa gabing napaka-init.

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  7. This is a beautiful story. I'm glad I read it first hour in the morning :)

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