“I’m sorry guys, but Chrixa’s not home.”
Auntie Jane said, after opening the door for us to come in.
Auntie Jane: She has to tend to some requirements she needed for her flight this Saturday.
We all went to Chrixa’s house right after school. After the epic display of friendship on the interrogation table, I told the Gang I’m going to tell her the truth without hesitating and they agreed to go with me to Chrixa’s house.
Mort: What time will she be back, Auntie Jane?
I am desperate to see Chrixa as soon as possible.
Auntie Jane: I don’t know, Mort.
Whether she knows about the ‘thing’ between Chrixa and I, she never showed a hint.
Auntie Jane: She said she’ll go home late. Why don’t you come back tomorrow? I’ll prepare dinner so we could have a party.
Lance: That is not a bad idea!
Auntie Jane: It’s settled then!
Auntie Jane is now wearing the same air of excitement as Lance did.
Auntie Jane: Go here tomorrow during dinner time and we’ll be having a little farewell party for Chrixa! Ooh! She’s gonna love this!
Each of us exchanged excited looks then Auntie Jane turns to me and say,
Auntie Jane: And darling, please don’t chicken out tomorrow, Okay?
She’s smiling encouragingly. It’s confirmed. Auntie Jane knows everything.
And for some reason, it boosted up my confidence tremendously. But all I can say is,
Mort: Yes, maam!
I notice the Gang sniggering around me.
Auntie Jane then hugs me.
Auntie Jane: You’ve always been a son to me. Mort.
Then I notice her crying.
Auntie Jane: So just be brave tomorrow!
I can feel a huge warmth in my heart. I’ve always thought of Auntie Jane as my second mom too. And knowing that I have her definite approval, I don’t think I’d ever chicken out tomorrow.
Jake: You’ll have to get ready for tomorrow, Mort.
Jake said patting my back, as we move away from Chrixa’s house.
I am now more confident than ever.
Mort: I’m just saying goodbye.
They all stop and look at me threateningly. I smile.
Mort: And tell her the truth.
Their menacing looks immediately turns to cheery.
Karen: Don’t get too carried away with the love thing though!
Karen raises her fore finger at me.
Karen: If you two ended up kissing, I’ll slap you on the face.
Daniel: You better listen!
Then we all laugh as Karen slap him in the head.
Karen: It goes for you, too!
Daniel: If it comes to it, it’s your fault if you can’t resist it.
Then Daniel teased Karen to kiss her. Karen gave him another slap, which caused another round of laughter.
They both have an agreement about the kissing thing. They decided to reserve it for marriage. That way it’ll be more special.
Kissing Chrixa is something that I don’t plan to do at all, though. I just want to say goodbye to her properly. And tell her the truth before she leaves.
I head home with a cheerful feeling. I’ll be ready for tomorrow I’m sure of it. It’ll be the last moments we’ll be together as young adults. I won’t let Chrixa leave without seeing her beautiful smile again. The real ones.
I thanked God in my prayers that night. I also asked Him to keep this strength that He’s given to me today, not letting it fade away when I wake up tomorrow.
After praying, I then took a deep breath and went to sleep. Tomorrow is gonna be a party.
I can feel the brush of wind as it passes rapidly through my face. This is the most joyful sensation I ever felt in my entire life.
“Mort!” Chrixa calls me. “Take my hand!”
I hold her hand as we descend deeply into the unknown. I don’t mind the mystery that awaits us at the bottom. I’m just happy that I’m with her.
After a while, a light forms beneath us. It grew bigger as we rapidly descend to it.
“Here it goes.” Chrixa excitedly announces.
Then there was a sudden flash as we hit it.
After the blinding brightness, we find ourselves suddenly sitting on a patch of grass under a young Acacia tree on top of a small hill. We are laughing so hard as we decide to lie down on the grass and watch the beauty of the clouds. We compare many forms of life as we watch the clouds curl into the shapes that we describe.
Chrixa is so happy and I feel the same.
This moment just feels so perfect.
But then it went dark.
The bright blue sky turns into a gloomy gray and the clouds twist violently up in the sky.
A swirl of clouds descended from the sky to land.
A tornado is formed!
We decided to hold onto the young Acacia tree nearby. I am getting scarier by the minute because the tornado is going our way.
“We’ll be fine, Mort.” Chrixa says with an assuring smile. I smile back but slightly frightened.
The wind was whistling violently as it pass through our ears. It is growing stronger and stronger that Chrixa and I are having a hard time holding on to the tree. Chrixa is slowly losing her grip.
“Mort!” she shouts, panicking, as she’s about to be flown away. Good thing I managed to grab her hand and a nearby branch, which kept her and me to be sucked into the tornado’s destructive twirl.
“I won’t let go!” I tell Chrixa. But her hand is slipping from mine. I can’t hold on to the branch as well. Pain shoots through my arm the longer I hold on to it, but I ignore it. I keep on urging myself,
“I won’t let go. I won’t let go. I won’t let go!”
“Mort!” Chrixa cries over the deafening whistle of the wind, eyeing our joined hands before staring straight to my eyes, and smiling confidently. “Let go!”
“What?! Are you out of your mind?!” I exclaim, shock that she even thought of letting go in spite of our situation. I don’t want to lose her! Not to this tornado!
“I won’t let go of you!” I holler.
“Not me!” she hollers back smiling. “The tree! Let go of the tree!”
“What?” now I’m confused, my brows knitting together with the effort to realize the meaning behind her words.
Chrixa smiles, determined and assuring. Then pointing upwards, she hollers,
“Trust Him! Let go and trust Him!”
I look at the tornado, and sees it getting closer, getting darker and getting stronger. I look at Chrixa. Her face. Her smiling beautiful face. I could enjoy watching her dazzling features for a long time but my hand distracts me as the pain grows. I look up.
“The rest is up to You!” I shout towards the sky. Then I turn to Chrixa again, squinting as the pain becomes more unbearable.
“Here it goes.” I tell Chrixa.
I close my eyes and let out a loud, “Aaaahhhh!”
Then I let go of the tree.
We were sucked by the tornado. I hold on to Chrixa’s hand tight. She did the same.
“I won’t let go of her!” I scream inside as I close my eyes, preventing the wind from shooting dusts into it.
I open my eyes when I heard Chrixa. Chrixa is enjoying this! And I can see why.
The tornado is glowing! And it is swirling gracefully!
Chrixa and I are flying inside of it! It was so beautiful. It feels so good that I joined her!
Our laughter are overlapping the sound of the wind. This feels so great! So perfect!
Then it struck me. Maybe this is it. The happiness of cherishing your moments with the one you love. But to see this, first I need to trust Him and let go of the things I thought would prevent us from getting hurt. All I needed to do was let go of the tree! I just have to embrace the fact that we love each other and show that love in the best way we can, even if there are big problems, like that tornado.
Chrixa’s my best friend. But it doesn’t mean that I’ll break that friendship even if I admit to myself that I love her more than that.
“I love you Chrish!”
“I love you too, Mort!”
And flew endlessly around the beautiful swirl of wind.
I was smiling when I slowly open my eyes to see the dimly lit ceiling of my room. I look straight at the ceiling absorbing the dream and the message it gave me.
My cellphone rings. I then check the time from my phone. It’s 4 in the morning. I checked the caller, wondering who would call in such a time, and was surprised to see that it was Karen. I then answered the phone but had to pull it away from my ears as she talked so fast and so loud that I can’t understand a word she’s saying.
Mort: Hey, Karen! Slow down! I can’t understand you!
She tries to compose herself but ended up shouting.
Karen: Chrixa’s leaving!!
I’m confused now.
Mort: She’s leaving tomorrow, remember. That’s why we’re gonna have a party later.
Karen: No Mort!
Suddenly the reason why Karen called so early and is acting hysterical dawns on me. So I was already thinking it when she said,
“She’s leaving today!!”