Chapter 20

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Chapter 20
Nostalgia

Flock of birds flew past me, crossing in the middle of the vast open sky above and sea below. The clear blue sky stretched until forever. As far as the eye could see, it seems like it has no boundaries. No one knows if there is even an end to it. But even with the unknowns past the sky, I don't fear it. Rather, I find it mysterious and beautiful.

It has no difference from the uncertainties of the future. I also had no idea what's ahead of me. However, I don't see it as mystifying as the skies. It reminds me of the deep, dark blue ocean instead―where undiscovered monstrous creatures could be living.

Before I came to Manila, I thought I already overcame my fear of the uncertain future. I thought I already managed to throw away my doubts and inhibitions. I told myself that I came to Manila in order to try reaching for my dreams one last time. I promised that I'd have no regrets whatever the results might be. But as the time went by, and after sorting out my impossible feelings, I had come to realize the true reason why I braved myself and decided to take the opportunity.

Back in Roxas, when I was separated from Ike for a week, I got a taste of nonfamilial longing. I was scared that time, thinking that he wouldn't come back. I didn't want to experience it again, and that's why I chose to be with him.

I left my hometown, crossed the land and sea, and set foot in an unfamiliar place, not mainly because of the survival show, but because I wanted to stay beside him. I knew it was wrong for me to have such reasons. It was foolish. I knew it was my mistake to let my life revolved around a man. I should know better that it could be very dangerous.

I put myself on this perilous part of the cliff where I could fall and crash any minute. I allowed myself to be vulnerable. Kaya ngayong ako'y nagdadalawang-isip kung tama ba ang ginawa ko, hindi ko maiwasang sisihin ang aking sarili. Hindi ako dapat nagdesisyon noong mga oras na pinapangunahan ako ng aking nag-uumapaw na emosyon.

Pagkatapos umalis ni Ida kasama nina Isaiah at Zendaya, mas lalo akong hindi makapag-isip nang maayos. Ike tried his best to guide me, but I was out of it. In the end, I just made an excuse that I wasn't feeling great. I wasn't in the right condition to make music.

It wasn't a lie though. Totoo namang hindi maganda ang aking pakiramdam. I couldn't stop thinking about Ida and the way Ike cared for her. Alam kong mas matagal nilang kilala ang isa't isa. Dapat ay naiintindihan ko kung bakit ganoon na lamang ang pakikitungo ni Ike sa kanya. However, even that fact made me hopelessly jealous. I wished I had known him for years like her.

Disturbed by the sudden movement beside me, I sacrificed looking at the exquisite view of nature to turn my head towards Ike. I watched him do a hand signal to the pilot. Mukhang naintindihan naman ng piloto ang kanyang nais sabihin kaya tumango lamang ito.

When Ike leaned back, he faced me with a smile and said, "We're almost there."

Tipid ko siyang sinagot ng ngiti bago muling ibinalik ang tingin sa labas. Hindi nagtagal ay kita kong papalapit kami sa isang isla. From afar, I saw the helipad sign on top of a small developed hill in the island. There was also a white beach mansion below, where a small pier was connected and stretched out to the sea.

Ike didn't tell me where we were going earlier. I thought we would return to the studio, but he suddenly told me to pack things for an overnight. Ang sabi niya rin ay magdala ako ng swimsuit. Good thing I brought one pair of bathing suit with me just in case. Madami akong naiwan sa bahay sa Roxas. I didn't really think that I'd get to be on a vacation while I was in Manila. Kaya naman hindi na ako masyadong nagdala nang pangswimming.

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