I’m One of the muses, A common wood nymph roaming around Parnassus, Happy with my little sweet pea. With her delicate, fragrant flowers Carried on long, slim stalks, She captivated me. I ran to her flaming with desire. I am flaming. Burning Blazing with desire. Too hot for my sweet pea. Because she’s so delicate, So delicate for me. As I touch her, she transformed into ashes. I burnt her. And out of a haze, you were formed. Like smoke given out by fire. A fireweed that sprang up in the burnt over area. A replacement, I thought. You quenched my thirst. Suffuse my hunger. My desire. I came to you for a crown And you gave me a kingdom. You made me eat on a golden plate And drink from your cup of diamonds. But like a common pitcher plant, Cut your base open And there you’ll find my body’s remains trapped inside. A pitfall in the middle of the forest. I will name you Venus? The goddess with a seducing brilliant red trap. Open to all beings that needs nurturing. Show your bosom and all will crave for your milk. From a butterfly, you turned me to an ant. When I brushed only slightly against your skin, You closed within an instant. Rigid spines on the margins of you blades interlock tightly. As soon as I was trapped, You digested me. Used me as a nutrient material. I know this is about to last for only a week. By the time your leaf reopens, You’ll be reedy for other sufferers. Trapped inside, I accepted my fate. Then there she came one spring day. My little delicate sweet pea. Now a spring beauty in full bloom. A low perennial herb. With narrow, succulent leaves And loose cluster of white and pink flowers. But your leaf has closed. I cannot escape.

Chapter 43  


Chapter 43

“Here we are… Our house is around that corner… and Sayu’s window is that one over there.” Reina pointed to a blue, 2-floor house in front of them. Rika and Reina settled to sit on the swing.

“So… what now? You’ve been pretty quiet on the way here. What’s on your mind?”

“I was thinking about my weird dream…” Rika answered.

“Care to share it with me?” Rika looked at Reina’s eyes for a while and smiled. They were alone again and it’s been almost three years since their last heart to heart talk in the restaurant. She took a deep breath before continuing.

“I had a dream about Maki before she died. In my dream, I was running after her but she told me that she didn’t know me. Then a paper flew in front of me and when I read it, it was my fortune when we went to the shrine 3 years ago.”

“What did it say?” Reina asked curiously.

“It said that my loved one will hurt me deeply. And that I must accept it so that I can become happy. Then it ended and now, I dreamed about it again and it seemed that it continued. After reading the paper, I threw it away and I still followed Maki. I screamed her name over and over until … a car hit her.” Rika stared on the ground while relating her dream to Reina.

“What happened next?”

“Someone came.”

“Who’s that someone?” Reina couldn’t hide the anticipation and curiosity on her eyes.”

“I tried to look for help but then Maki held my hands. And then that someone came and threatened to beat Maki into pieces if she ever lay at least a finger on me.” Rika looked at Reina with puzzled eyes.

Reina thought for a moment before sighing. “From that kind of talk… I guess it’s Miki who came… Am I right?” Reina continued talking when she saw Rika nod.
“I guess it clearly tells you what you should do now. It’s either you refuse to accept your dream’s suggestion and live in melancholy for the rest of your life or… you end up with someone new for you and move on.”

“I don’t quite get it… So… you’re saying that I should end up with Miki? But Aya said that I should be careful with her right? It’s a weird dream right?”

“Yeah, a REALLY weird dream if you ask me… Maybe Maki’s not happy wherever she is right now, because you can’t let her go or something like that… I guess Maki wanted you to enjoy your life here that’s why she can’t remember you, indirectly telling you that you should move on and somewhat “forget” her too… If you didn’t, the pain of seeing Maki, all “bloodied up” will haunt you for the rest of your life. Well, it doesn’t necessarily mean Miki… It’s because recently, you’ve been close with Miki that’s why appeared on your dream. You can be with someone else… Ayumi for example.”

Rika just listened intently on her friend’s explanation until the last sentence.

“EHH?!? Why did Ayumi came into the picture? She’s just my best friend whom I’m very close to. That doesn’t necessarily mean that she can become my girlfriend!”

“Hahaha!!! It’s just a joke… I need to lighten up the mood up a bit that’s why I said that.” Reina laugh hard and started swinging back and forth.

“I can be with Ayumi, or Eri, or Sayu or even you if you based it on the closeness… But I’m not yet ready for a new relationship. I’ll just enjoy my life for now.”

“And we’ll support you always!”

Rika and Reina were surprised to see two people jumped up from the bush beside them. They almost screamed due to the shock.

“ERI!! SAYU!! What the heck… DON’T SCARE US LIKE THAT!!!!” Reina stood up and hit her best friends on their heads lightly.

“Gomen! Eri was worried when she didn’t see the two of you on your bed. She woke me up and then I remember seeing Reina on the swing many nights before so I assumed the two of you were here.” Sayu said with her hands clasped together near her face and smiled.

“You… You’re watching me?”

“Yes, ever since the first time I saw you sitting here. I always check every night whether you will come here or not. You look so serene whenever you’re sitting in the swing.”

“I always had a hard time sleeping at nights that’s why I go here.”

“Well, we’ve learned something new from you. If we can’t fall asleep, go here first.” Eri said sarcastically. “You should have waked us up. It’s nice to go out with your friends in the middle of the night.” Eri reached out her hand to Reina. Reina in turn, gave back the key to their house.

“Gomen, I’m worried that if I wake you up, I will disturb Sayu’s beauty sleep.”

“Oi! I’m not that obsessed!” Sayu retaliated.

“I guess you have no clue of the extent of your vanity.” The three laugh when they saw Sayu blushed. Rika suggested that they return to Eri’s house. The others agreed and they walked back together hand in hand.

“Dad, do you mind if I talk with you privately?”

“Sounds serious eh? Why didn’t you tell it to me on our house before or earlier? Do you think we can have a little private time here on the airport?” Hitomi was sitting with her father on the waiting area of the passengers. Miki and her mom went back to their house to get some important papers which Mr. Yoshizawa forgot on his study table.

“I just made up my mind last night and I can’t tell it in front of mom or onee-san.” Hitomi looked at his father with her eyes full of determination. Mr. Yoshizawa understood that look and gestured at her to sit closer to him. Hitomi laid her head on her father’s shoulder. Her father hugged her back.

“I was thinking about our last conversation… about me fighting back.” Hitomi started.

“And what about that?”

“Is it really ok if I fought back? I mean, hurting other person… is that really alright?”

“Well, if you’re being bullied, then you have the right to fight back. Show them that they have no right to hurt you.” Mr. Yoshizawa said and then he pinched his daughter’s left cheek.

“Ouch! Otousan!!!” Hitomi massaged her aching face. “Seriously, I’m not talking physically… Is it good to hurt someone emotionally? What if you both want to attain something, but only one must prevail… and one will definitely get hurt in the end… Is it ok to fight for that dream if the other one who wanted it to, is important to you?” Hitomi sounded desperate. She already made up her mind to pursue Rika but then, she was having some doubts. Her last option which can help her made up her mind was her understanding father.

“Care to elaborate more? I don’t get what you want to say.” Mr. Yoshizawa looked straight at her daughter’s eyes. He could see confusion etched on it. Hitomi immediately looked at the ground to break her father’s intense gaze.

“This is it! It’s now or never!”
“I… I like someone in school…and a really close classmate of mine like that person too… I both love the two of them but still… I don’t want to imagine the pain I would feel if I see them end up together”

“Wow, boys could really get in your nerves…”

“What if… what if the person that I like is a girl? Would… would that be alright with you?” Hitomi looked at her father’s face. She’s trying to discern his reaction. She noticed mixed feelings of shock, sadness and compassion after pouring out the revelation. But she could not sense any hatred or bitterness from her father.

“I sensed it before. You’re acting more like a shy boy than a shy girl. I thought it was just the transition period before, that you’re having some identity crisis in the first stage of puberty… but… I guess you finally made up your mind.”

“Are you not angry with me? Is it alright with you?”

“I guess so… You said that you made up your mind last night… I bet you’re thinking about it for a long time now, right? Making decisions is one of the things you must learn in your teenage life. And you should be able to handle the consequences of each decision you make. I’ll just support you and… if you have any problems or concerns, you can just call me on the phone, Ok? I can adjust my tight schedule for my favorite daughter.” Mr. Yoshizawa said while winking at his favorite daughter. Hitomi hugged his father tightly. She was glad that she had an understanding father that’s able to accept her real identity. She would deal with her somewhat “strict” mother later… or sooner. For now, she will just enjoy her last moments with her father.

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