BACK FOR JUSTICE

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By: Fanny A. Tang

Whether we are  a skeptic or a true believer in ghosts, we have to  defer such belief when things around us happen in a strange and peculiar  manner. Sometimes a ghost will stay  in our physical world to see that justice is done. Sometimes even a spirit from the beyond  comes back to  make sure that its good name is cleared. Richard was such a ghost. Richard, a  14-year-old, worked as a gardener in a large house  in an upscale subdivision in Metro Manila.  The owner of the house is a  rich widower named Mr. Montes, who also had  a huge mansion in their home province in Iloilo. Mr.  Montes and his two young sons were very trusting to their household servants and treat them kindly.

That summer, the Montes family spent their summer vacation in  their ancestral home in Iloilo. The family was enjoying their vacation when one day,  Mr. Montes received an urgent message from Romy, their caretaker in Metro Manila house.  Romy said that the house  had been broken into the night before and a large amount of jewelry and other valuables had been stolen. They don’t know what to do.  They did  not report the robbery to the police  yet because they needed to know the  decision of Mr. Montes first.

Mr. Montes immediately  flew back to Manila and got the whole  story. Romy said he  had been awakened late night by a noise.  The noise seems to be coming  from the master’s  bedroom where the  jewelries were kept.  He hurried to the master’s  bedroom and was a  confronted by two-rough looking thieves with black bonnets  on their heads . With  them,  Romy said,  was the young boy Richard, who it appeared  had let them in. Romy said that the men overpowered him, tied him up and gagged him to prevent his shouting  for help. Then they and Richard  ransacked  the house and tool the jewelries  and silverware. Romy was found in his fellow servants the next morning. Richard was gone and was never seen again. Mr. Montes decided  to report the  robbery to the authorities and had Romy as the principal witness against the prime suspect, the boy  Richard. And that was supposed to close the  whole affair. But that was not to be the case.

Some months later, Mr. Montes woke up to see a young boy standing  by his bed. He realized it was Richard. The boy had been  hiding all along somewhere in the house since the robbery, he thought.

When Mr. Montes confronted the boy,  Richard said nothing  but beckoned  to Mr.  Montes  to follow him.  As the lad  moved,  making no sound at all, Mr. Montes realized he was seeing a ghost. He slowly followed the boy out of the house to a large mango tree in the garden. The ghost stopped beside the tree and pointed to the ground. The ghost looked at Mr. Montes and then disappeared. Mr Montes stood there in  the garden, wondering what the ghost was up to.  The next morning , Mr. Montes  decided  to take  action on what he  experienced the previous night.  He had workmen dig the ground where the ghost had pointed. They found  the body of Richard  buried there. The  body was  identified  by the other servants through the shirt and the pants he was wearing. Police  were called, and they interrogated everyone in the house.  With the intensive  questioning and grilling from the investigators, Romy confessed to the crime. He was part  of the robbery plot, having let the  thieves in himself.  While they were talking the jewelries, Richard  had heard a noise  and investigated. When he entered the master’s bedroom,  one of the robbers  struck the boy and killed him. Romy was frantic  and  did not know what to do.  The two robbers were professional  thieves. To cover the crime, they buried  Richard,  and tied up and gagged their accomplice,  Romy,  to hide his participation in the robbery. The other  servants in the house did not awaken because their food was spiked with  drugs to make them feel  drowsy and fall in deep sleep. Romy forgot that Richard was sent out to buy something that night and did not  eat his  supper in the house.  Even though he was now a ghost,  Richard was not going to let Romy  get away with his  death and ruin his reputation. He needed to come back  for justice. He was successful. Romy and his  accomplices were sentenced to  life imprisonment.

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