Friday, February 11, 2005

Haraya.

Episode for Feb 9, 2005, Wednesday. The death of its mate would cause grief to any lovebird. But when the death is violent, cruel and planned, it is not grief alone that takes hold of the heart. Anger and desire for revenge seize it and dominate every other emotion. Haraya was in that kind of situation. Love songs and poetic idylls were forgotten. Balasik’s blood was crying out to her for a vengeance she was determined to carry out. And the belief that her wrath was justified made her passion stronger. “He had no pity,” Haraya said aloud. “He will pay for what he did to you, Balasik!” Out camping in the forest, Alwina often had had to sleep in a sitting position like other Mulawin. But here in Carig, she resumed her human habits and was dozing on the couch tonight. Gabriel watched over with Terong beside him. “Are you sure you don’t know where Aling Lourdes went?” asked the latter. And the master answered in a low voice, “Don’t tell me you suspect me of killing her too?” “It’s not that. But you were the last person with her.” Again, Gabriel protested his innocence. “Sure I did, but I saw her leave. I heard the others calling her, but I don’t even think she heard them.” He was piling up lies one on top of the other. One could see the family resemblance between him and the other males in his true family. Alwina suspected nothing, however. She was happy to have him around. “Don’t be shy around me,” she told him the next day. “I just don’t want to look as if I’m taking advantage of the situation now that you and Aguiluz have a problem.” “Don’t worry about it,” she replied. “In truth, I wouldn’t know what to do now if you weren’t here.” Meanwhile, Aguiluz and his doubles entered into their duel. The real Sugo threw the first kick, and a rapid exchange of blows followed. It was a perfectly even match from the onset, and Aguiluz felt that he was boxing against his own shadow. Every move he made his opponent seemed to anticipate and imitate. It really seemed as if they were twins with a single train of thought, the same training, the same strategy, and the same amount of courage and strength. Even his enchanted weapon had also been cloned. In the fleeting moments when he struck his flute on the ground to bring up his sword, Aguiluz had hoped that his imitator would not be able to duplicate the magic-feat. But he was mistaken; the very same blade sprang up from the earth, and his challenger wielded it with finesse and confidence equal to his own. At one point, they hurled their swords at each other, but each caught the weapon in his hand unscathed. “I’m confused!” Tuka exclaimed. “They look exactly the same!” “I’m the real Aguiluz!” each of them insisted. “He’s an impostor!” Then the counterfeit Sugo seized Tuka by the neck and pointed his sword at her. “We’re not through yet!” he warned, then fled from the scene. Aviona and the frightened Tuka ran to Aguiluz. “So Aramis was telling the truth,” Aviona realized. “Where is Alwina?” asked the emissary. They explained to him that Alwina left after what the impersonator had done. And the news of Balasik’s murder deeply shocked Aguiluz. But they did not tarry long in that place, and after Tuka assured him that she would accompany them, Aguiluz led the others in search of Alwina. Using his gift of remote-viewing, Aguiluz was able to obtain glimpses of his lady. He saw her sitting beside a girl he recognized as a former resident Tierra Fuego. “I can see her now!” he exclaimed. “This means she’s out of danger!” But suddenly, the scene went blank, and Aguiluz could not restore it to his mind’s eye. “She’s gone again1” he said. “I have a bad feeling about this. I think Gabriel has found her!” The ailing Habagat asked if it was Linang who had come to visit him. Linang confirmed it, and the Mulawin told the others, “That is Linang, the mother of Mulagat.” Linang did not delay. “Do not give up, Habagat,” she told him. “There is hope yet!” She held the shimmering red stone over him and willed all its energy to descend on him. A flood of red and white light clothed him, and Habagat felt youth and vigor return to him. When he rose, everyone knew he had completely recovered. Linang then confessed how she had procured the miraculous stone, adding, “I have no regrets about what I did. But where is Mulagat? Let’s wake him up! He should be up now!” Bagwis broke in. “Mulagat? What? Wasn’t he in Encantadia? He was going there to try to find a cure for his father.” Then the former queen cast a frightened glance around her. “You mean he left Avila? But I never saw him there before I left! And now that darkness coves this land, the enchanted portal can no longer take him to Encantadia. Instead…” She remembered the Queen Mother’s warning. “Instead, the door takes one to the dark side.” Habagat went to her. “Can’t you use your powers to open such a portal so we can follow him there?” But she shook her head. “When I gave up my powers as a Diwata, I also lost the ability to create a portal. And I can no longer ask the other Encantada for help.” Habagat put his arms around her, but could offer no other comfort. The three children had come within the vicinity of Avila when Niwalum begged to be allowed to rest. Foreseeing that Dakila would ask them many questions as soon as they arrived, Wis agreed that it would be best to stop for the night. Gus agreed. On the next day, the five Ravena toddlers set foot on the lush Avilan pastures. “At last, we’re out of Halimhim!” they cheered. Then mindful of their father’s command, they flew off like bats to find Niwalum. He went out kite-flying that morning, happy and strong once again. “I feel now that Aguiluz is headed in the right direction,” he explained to his friends, as if this were the reason for his recovery. While he was speaking, the kite flew out of his hand. Then the trio ran after it. They chased after the elusive kite for hours until poor Gus and Wis were panting like thirsty hound dogs. “Why are you so eager to get that kite?” asked Wis. “Does it have a mind of its own? Why don’t we just make another one?” Niwalum refused to give a reason for his inordinate attachment to his toy. “All right, all right!” he said. “Let’s go back to Avila then.” “Oh, at last,” sighed Wis. Finally, the boy acted with some sense! Suddenly, they heard a whizzing sound in the air like an arrow. The playmates turned to see what it was. Aramis whistled repeatedly in vain. Where was Rasmus? He needed to speak with that loathsome devil! But no one came. How long must this go on, Aramis wondered? Would Aviona be the price to pay? “Is this the price to pay to the Ravena who took me in?” he asked himself in distress. Rasmus was busy in his new home, and his unpleasant new family. “You know,” Savannah told him and his father, “there are some girls left in that town where we got Lourdes. Why don’t we go get more?’ “Looks like our princess is really trying to make a good impression,” Rasmus mocked. “There you go again. Just admit it, Rasmus. You’ve always been a has-been!” The king turned to her as if to break her jaw, when Ravenum said, “Lourdes has awakened.” The mother of the Ravena walked into their midst like one who had lost her way. They greeted her, and she said, “Your names sound familiar to me.” “That’s because you have always been with us,” Rasmus said. “You’ve just been asleep for a long time.” “Where am I?” “Halimhim,” Ravenum told her. “This is where we live.” Lourdes was looking far, far away as if her soul had not quite settled yet into its new home. “Halimhim,” she echoed. Now a stranger had inadvertently trespassed into the new Ravena lair. Mulagat could sense evil resident in this place; even the smoke spewing up from the ground like hot geysers suggested this to him. But it looked like an abandoned town where lowlanders used to live. Where exactly was he? As he wandered here and there in his conspicuous white garments, the princess of the land espied him and smiled to herself. “Who could this intruder be?” she wondered. “Hmm. Looks like I have a new victim!” A newcomer had entered the Mulawin territory as well. Aling Rosing and her neighbors huddled together, whispering. “Look at that woman,” she said. “I’ve been following her all day, but I can’t see her face. I’ve never seen her here before.” The person in question was walking alone, wearing a long black robe over a white dress, and a hood covering her head. Habagat and Linang noticed this, and he called the lady over. “Who are you?” he asked politely. “What do you need?” She said in a lovely voice, “I am looking for Dakila.” So the elder Mulawin was summoned. “Somebody’s looking for you.” Dakila went to see who this was. The woman drew back her hood, revealing her features. She had long, dark brown hair, and a beautiful mature face that wore a look of great sorrow. “Don’t you recognize me, Dakila?” she asked. “Haraya?”
 

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