Girl In 210 (3/3)

My heart thumped loudly in my chest
as my mother and I sat in silence.
Mind you, this tale is a rather long one,
but it’s worth your while, especially when I’m done.
I will tell you the explicit way
my mother had relayed it to me –
She started with a name – “Eloise”
finally, a name to match the face.
She moved in the building
three years back,
her mother had just died then
her father has become a drunk.
She stopped going to school
and took care of her father…
but he never took notice of her,
he never bothered.
But Elise rathered he didn’t care
than when he started to hit her after each emptied bottle.
When he is drunk he slapped her around
but she never allowed that to bring her down.

Her life was full of ups and downs,
her plans never seemed to materialize,
but she faced life still with courage –
made magic in each of her life’s page.
The tough times where she was sure she’d break,
she closes her eyes and say a prayer –
That all hardship and misery disappear
and her father, be once again, endeared.

But Fate has brought her more misfortune,
that one winter’s night full of desolation.
As she was on her way home
a few blocks away from work,
Eloise was taken by force
violated by monsters cloaked in murk.

She woke up the next day
blinded by a white light,
Dressed in a hospital gown
her father’s face was in fright.
He had almost lost his daughter,
but what’s worse than that –
was when Eloise lost sight of hope
lost her way and her path.
Her father stopped drinking
but Eloise stopped speaking.
She would just lie awake in bed
afraid to scream her way from sleep.
Til one day Eloise could no longer take it,
she took a blade and sliced her wrist with it.“
I broke down in tears as my mother finished,
I never knew her life was full of perish.
If I could only turn back time
and had taken her clue seriously before I had part,
I could have saved her
and she’d still be here with a beating heart.

MR@2017

Girl In 210 (2/3)

She was that girl
with jet black hair,
a tantalizing smile,
and beauty she didn’t know was there.
She was mysterious,
or maybe I was just delirious?
Was it true that I met her?
On that rainy day in September.
She was all I could think of,
even with a pool of options.
Though I met her but once,
I believed fate will mind its course.
Three years had gone,
I’ve moved out from my folks’ home.
Though every time I visited,
I still look around for this girl.

While I was wandering the hallway
towards my folks’s flat,
I noticed our flat number was 212,
I was caught in shock.
Could it have been
that she’s from Flat 210?
Or is it just me again,
making up scenes in my head?
If I was right though,
she’s just two doors away.
I could create my own destiny
manage the course of my fate.
I headed slowly, heartbeat racing
palms sweating, slowly pacing.
I knocked on the door,
hoping to see my girl – 210.

Nobody answered
and there was that eerie stillness.
I hurried back to our home
asked my mother if she had known.
The girl I have been searching for,
that girl who caught my heart.
My mother spoke with sad eyes,
saying she’s known them for a while.
She said she knew the history
of the girl I wished was destined for me.
I sat in silence and let her speak
hoping she will unveil Girl 210′s mystique.

MR@2017

Girl In 210. (1/3)

On a cold winter morn,
I squeezed into my jacket –
my breath’s darn cold
like I had chewed on ice.
I stood still waiting
for the bus to come ‘round.
It’s a little late now,
worse, it had started to drizzle.
Rain came pouring down,
I was sure I’d get another shower.
But you came right beside me,
had an umbrella over my head.
I thanked you profusely,
you just smiled and nodded your head.
I asked you your name,
you only responded with “Girl in 210″.

I had no idea what you meant,
but the ride finally arrived.
I ushered you to go in first,
not my luck, it’s not your ride.
“Your name?” I asked again,
in all mystery you just gave me a grin.
With a touch of hesitation
i went inside in isolation.
”Girl in 210,
will I ever see you again?”
I’ve waited days and weeks,
and months and years.
Still took the same bus route,
and my sanity I’ve started to doubt.
Did I really meet you, 210?
Were you for real?
Or were you just a fiction?
created by my imagination.

MR 2017

Elevator.

It was a rather hot day in November. I remember circling around Fuente Osmena trying to locate the entrance to the building where I was supposed to have an interview.

I was fresh out from College, like literally just a few days old from graduation, when I got the text message from an HR officer inviting me for an interview at 12 the day after. Perked up early in the morning (the idealist in me then would want to be at least 30 minutes early in any rendezvous) and headed out. I wasn’t so sure of the address but the landmark is in the center of downtown Cebu so it wasn’t too difficult to get there. All I needed to know was to check which building is which.

I tried calling the phone line but no one was picking up. After maybe about half an hour of searching, I finally found their signage on the wall where all other companies were listed. The list was huge but it was at the bottom of the building and hidden between a huge empty wall and a Watson’s shop.

I went by the signage and had troubles finding the entrance to the building. The shop beside it (Watson) was the only entrance I could find. I asked the security guard from the shop if the entrance to the company was through their shop and he just shook his head without talking. I walked closer to the signage looking for a door and I found a very small elevator door adjacent to the wall. First thing I thought was, it’s facing the wrong way. I found it a bit odd because from where I came in from, you would never have thought that tiny little elevator was there.

I pressed the UP button and the light around the button lit up. In a few seconds, the elevator opened and there was a guard inside that tight little space. He was slumped in a plastic chair, his hat skewed to the left, and his chin was almost resting on his clavicle. I slowly entered the lift so I won’t disturb him and pressed button 3. It was a little tricky to do so without bothering him because the buttons were a little low and the bodyguard was in the way.

When I reached the third floor, there was a Ding sound and to my right, I found the company. They have a glass door where you can peak inside, but the office was empty except for one person cleaning the desks. I asked the caretaker if I had the right place or if they had moved, he said that employees are scheduled 6pm and beyond. When I told him regarding the text message I got the night before, he said that they HR Officer probably meant 12mn.

I was frustrated with it because I felt a little dull going in a call center mid-noon. I didn’t know that even the HR office is closed in the morning. So I thanked the caretaker and immediately went back to the elevator. I pressed the down button and the light didn’t turn up. I figured the light-bulb (or whatever you call it) may have just burned out. I waited for 15 minutes and still nothing. I walked a little further to the right and found a huge stairs. I was alone in that very old building and I couldn’t recall seeing a stair entrance when I came in so I opted to wait for the elevator still.

A few moments more, the caretaker came by and found me. He asked “What are you waiting for?”, I smiled and just told him I was waiting for the elevator. Much to my surprise when he said “It’s not working. It hasn’t worked for 3 weeks now. I guess management doesn’t have time yet.”

I shook my head still smiling and said “No, it works. It’s how I came in.” He looked confused and asked me to go with him downstairs. I agreed and we both went down the huge stairs. It led straight to an entrance, one I didn’t see earlier. It should have been hard to miss, it was right beside Watson. It was a huge stairs with two security guards stationed in a brown table. It was just a wall though, just a block of cement earlier. I thought.

The caretaker asked the two guards if they were able to get my credentials, I told them it would not have been necessary, I used the elevator entrance. The guards, too, were surprised. They said they didn’t notice me too. I told them again, a little irritated, that they could not have seen me because I used the other entrance. I even stressed that as proof, the elevator guard can attest to that.

The three of them looked at each other, horrified. I got so irritated I shouted at them and said “Can someone please bring the other security guard in? You’re all making me feel like I did something wrong and I hate it!!!”

One of the security guard spoke and said, “Ma’am, we’re sorry but we can’t get the other guard. There’s only us both on duty and we did not see you come in.”

I shook my head in disbelief and ushered them to come with me by the elevator so I can show them it worked. The caretaker and one guard followed me. We went down a few steps more and moved to the right where there’s an empty space between the stair entrance and the Watson’s shop. I continued to usher them inside and showed them the door, when we were greeted with a laminated signage pasted on the elevator door in big red letters “OUT OF ORDER”.

I stared at the sign, stupefied, flabbergasted, confounded, so I just stared at the door confused. I tried to press the UP button and hoped that somehow the light would turn up but it didn’t.

I looked at them both and the caretaker said, “It’s really not working. But this is not the first time this happened.” Under my breath, I whispered This isn’t possible. Then the guard added, “Ma’am, the elevator is closed because three weeks ago, one of the guards committed suicide inside the elevator shaft.”

The caretaker then said, “You aren’t the first to experience this, ma’am. There were a few before you. And there’s a girl from last week, it took her 4 hours before she got out of the elevator. She was in shock when she got out. They said she’s still in the hospital right now.”

I nearly fainted with that information to the point where both had to help me up and bring me back to the entrance to calm myself down a little. When I was okay, I thought, Somehow, it felt like Death delivered me to my destination. I was just glad I escaped unscathed… or did I?

MR @ 2016

Note: This is based on a true story

Lost.

I can still recall the strong smell of incense and from outside, beneath the door of the entrance is a fog ominously trying to sneak out from inside. I remember thinking that the Horror Booth staff really did a good job in trying to scare the shit out of people even before entering. I couldn’t wait to see what they have in store for everyone as I lined up with my friend Jenny. It was the University’s Founder’s Day, it’s bound to be a fun day!

I’m not really one who is easily scared, so I was hoping that time I’d be scared af when I get out of that place. I guess, it’s true what they say, be careful what you wish for. The group that went in before us had just finished the entire horror journey and their screaming was replaced with laughter on the other side of the area. The guides were back and started on with the guidelines and such.

Even before entering, everyone behind me had already started to yell. Most of the guys were pretending to be scared and if I’d known better, they really were scared.

Once inside, we couldn’t care less on the scaring tactics of the staff because we were all having too much fun pretending to be scared. There were people trying to grab my feet, I could hear Jenny screaming, and I couldn’t see a thing. I think it would have been better if they’d put on some dim lighting because I could not (at all) make out anyone from inside and I was right behind the first guide, who has a small light dangling in his chest. I just know that Jenny was just right behind me and the guide in front of me because I was holding their hands.

Maybe after about a minute of fooling around, someone blew powder to my face and it itched. My nose itched and my eyes felt some sort of dust get into it. I fought my way out of the guide’s grip as I heard him saying, “Don’t let go.” but the itch was too much so I had to temporarily let go of them both to clear my eyes and scratchm my nose a bit.

I heard Jenny call out my name as she bumped into me.

“I’m here, I’m here. Give me your hand” I said.

We found each other’s hand right away but I couldn’t find the guide so I called out to him. No response. I asked Jenny if she is still holding hands with the person next to her and I need not continue because whoever she is, screamed from behind Jenny. I just laughed. Since I was the first in line and I’m no longer with the guide, I screamed out that the guide was gone but no one seemed to hear me being that they’re having too much fun. Instead, I followed a light, a light that flickers. I assumed it was the guide but he was moving pretty quickly, so I had to hasten my pace a bit while the others had been pushing. Oddly, I couldn’t see the light behind me. The second guide was supposed to be right out back.

I continued to follow the light while dragging everyone with me wherever the light went. Then what seemed to be almost like forever, Jenny had started to complain and all of a sudden, she’s let go. Just like that I wasn’t holding her hand anymore and there was utter silence. All the yelling, the laughing – gone. I called out to Jenny, no response. I called on to anyone, and there was just bleak silence. I turned around hoping to see something but there was nothing. It was like being stuck in an endless abyss. No one is trying to scare me anymore, it’s as if I got pulled out of the horror house and placed somewhere else.

“Where am I?” I kept asking myself as I ran towards anywhere. My palms were up, just in case I hit a wall. The running felt endless so I sat and rested for a bit. Then the room went cold. I sat in a fetal position on the floor and continuously kept rubbing my hands together to keep me warm. It wasn’t this cold earlier. I just thought that maybe it was because I was just stationary. If I move a lot, then I won’t feel so cold. So I got up again and started running again. Nothing. There was nothing. It was all pitch black and what scares me the most is that I have not bumped into anything at all. No walls. Just a lot of floors.

I crouched down on the floor again and cried like a baby. Every part of me was so tired and scared and cold. “I want out. Please, I just want out!” I yelled. Then there was a loud banging somewhere like someone is trying to kick a door down. So I immediately got up hoping it was help. Just as I did though, I could feel a wall right behind me. I barely moved an inch to my right then there was another wall. When I moved to my left, another one. I held my hand up and I could feel a flat sturdy cement. I was boxed in!!! I was so freaked out, I could barely breathe. I was trying to catch a breath of air of some sort, any. But I couldn’t. My hands were sweaty and cold and I had just screamed and screamed and screamed so loud, I fainted.

When I got back to my consciousness, I saw Jenny’s face first. I was so relieved I hugged her right away and was so thankful it was just a dream. When I looked around though, I can see concern in her face and everyone was there… Everyone I went inside the house with.

“It wasn’t a dream” I whispered, still confused.

A professor’s face came into view and she just said:

“We found you screaming so loud in the second floor. It’s a good thing the guard checked it out, we could barely hear it.”

I chuckled at that thought and threw my head back. I thought I might have just accidentally slept inside the building and had a bad dream that’s why they found me screaming. It wasn’t real, I tried to convince myself. The gave me a huge relief that I didn’t really question anything anymore, I just wanted to go home. I said I was fine and asked if I could go home to which the Professor approved. Jenny said she’d take me home on her car instead and I was so tired, I just nodded and held on to her.

When we were in the car, she was looking a little perturbed though.

“Are you sure you’re okay?” Jenny asked.

“Yes. A little light-headed but I’m fine.” I responded calmly.

“That was weird, wasn’t it?” She added trying to chuckle a laugh but not succeeding.

I nodded but said, “Well, I bet everyone gets lost in the dark every now and then. How did you find me anyway?”

“Inside, you let go of my hand and the guide’s hand. I got lost too. After everyone’s gone through the Horror House, they realized that both of us were missing. So the staff decided not to let anyone in the area and turned on all the lights inside.” She said like she’s trying to put it as clear as possible.

“They found me right away. I was circling the room and had one hand in front and the other behind me as if I was holding someone, but really, I was alone. I only stopped as soon as someone approached me and told me what happened.” She looked scared as shit and as if she was about to cry.

“Oh Dear. I’m so sorry that happened. God! That’s scary! It’s good they found your right away though.”

“Yes, At least.” She paused. I thought she wasn’t to add anything to that but she spoke again, “But you… We thought we’d never find you!”

She cried so hard and parked the car at the side of the road, wailing.

“What do you mean? How long were you out looking for me” I asked.

What I heard next was something I could not believe…

“4 hours. We were looking for you for four hours.” She said not looking at me.

“What?!” I was in shock! “What do you mean 4 hours. You found me right away, didn’t you? I was just in the second floor!” I was close to yelling at her.

“Yes, you were. But you weren’t supposed to be. They closed it down and used ground floor only. All the rooms there were locked.” She looked at me still crying, but her stare… It was a little unsettling. Then she added “How did you get there?” She looked at me scared like she wasn’t sure if I was still the same person.

I immediately looked away and said “Please, take me home.”

It’s been 10 years, but I’ve never forgotten… nor have I figured it out. How did I get there when I don’t recall climbing up a stair?

MR @ 2016

Reflections.

He had just spent 7 months on the gym, yet he can already see progress in his hard work. The dieting came as a challenge but he was able to manage a 6-pack of “luscious” abs as he called it.

Vanity wasn’t going to end there though, so he asked his girlfriend if it was alright for him to bring the full-body mirror that was once in the living room to their room facing the bed. He was excited when she said yes and immediately placed the mirror in front of their bed where he can see his reflection as soon as he wakes up.

It was then early 2006, selfies and photos weren’t as famous then but he didn’t need cameras to see his hard work – he only needed a mirror.

One night after a modelling gig, he and his girlfriend went over a friend’s house to celebrate. It was already around 12mn and they were laughing and singing and having a lot of noise in a quiet province in Cebu. Before heading home, he decided to pee and was a little too tipsy to go to the loo, he walked towards the nearest tree and peed on it. Once done, he turned around and saw a blurred image of his girlfriend walking towards the back entrance of his friend’s house. He called on to her but she didn’t stop. She continued to walk away so he followed. A few steps later, someone grabbed him from behind – it was his friend. The friend asked him where he was going and he slurred out the words but his friend got one word right “girlfriend”. So the friend took him to his girlfriend who, thankfully, was still very sober, and they both decided to go home.

Early morning, he woke up to the smell of fresh eggs and buttered bread. He initially thought the girlfriend probably did the cooking but he can still feel his girlfriend resting her head on his arm with her back turned. With that smell of delight though, he assume that it was his mother! She has a copy of the house keys.

He slowly got up, making sure that he won’t wake his girlfriend, and faced the mirror. He moved closer to it and flexed his muscles. “Damn, I look good!” he told himself. Then he looked at the reflection of his sleeping girlfriend from behind, she was still deep in sleep. But when he checked the time, it was almost mid-noon! He just had to wake her.

He turned around, called out her name and playfully tickled her feet from beneath the sheets. She didn’t move, nor did she make a sound. He got concerned for fear that she might be unconscious so he grabbed the sheets on both hands and removed them… but there was nothing. No one was there.

He felt panic rushing down his spine. He swore he felt a head resting on his arms and he touched her feet. There were feet! He felt a cold sweat dripping from his forehead and, it might have been just his imagination, but the sheets were moving so he made a run for it. As fast as he could and went for the kitchen where his girlfriend, his real girlfriend was standing – cooking for their meal.

She asked what was wrong and he just stared at her blankly. She reached out for him with an apparent confusion on her face and touched his face. He calmed down a bit and embraced her.

He felt better, safe. Then someone came in the front door, he expected it to be his mother (finally). He let go of the embrace and held his girlfriend’s hand ushering her to go to the living room with him. Much to his surprise though when he saw that the person at the door was his girlfriend… and the hand tugged beneath his went cold – so so cold.

The he woke up with the smell of fresh eggs and buttered bread. His girlfriend was resting on his arms, her hair covering her face. She moved the hair away and was glad to see the face of her girlfriend. He kissed her and told her to get up. So she did. When he was about to stand, he saw a reflection of two figures in the mirror, one was him and the other – definitely wasn’t human.

MR

(Loosely based on a True Story)

Photo Credits: http://cdn.playbuzz.com/cdn/93d7f6b0-2fc9-4ab0-8316-63a712c08413/16907fb8-1a63-487a-914b-e0ef18c7caab.jpg