MY PROTECTORS

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By Maxwell Evans

My story started when I had a  near death experience. I had just finished  a  late and heavy lunch.  I decided to retire to my room for a little siesta ( nap). I fell asleep almost immediately.  Suddenly, I felt something heavy on my chest. I knew I was awake but my body  lay unconscious. I couldn’t move a finger! I was soon panicking.

I started to see blank  faces before me, like those white theater masks you see in Greek tragedies. They were  beckoning me to join them. Freezing  white hands materialized beneath the faces. They  caressed my legs and started pulling me from the bed. I kept saying, “No, please, huwag, ayoko sumama… ( No please, don’t Idon’t want to go with you….)”

Something illuminated above my headboard. There was an extremely tall dark man whose head was covered by some ethereal light. He was  wearing a checkered polo and he was touching my arm.

“Gumising ka, sige, kaya mo iyan…  (Wake up, come on, you can do it…) I was terrified out of my wits! I didn’t know whose command to follow-the  gentle voice of the tall man or the  persistent caressing of the white faces by my feet. I  tried with all my might to move  my left arm,  concentrating on moving at least a finger. “Sige, kaya mong gumising, gising kana, bilis ( Come on,  you can wake up,  wake up now,  quickly)!” the tall man gently cheered.

Snap! Before I knew it, I was sitting  atop my bed, sweating and panting as if  I had a Herculean struggle with a wrestle.  The first  thing I did was  rush downstairs to  drink some water.  I could not believe how thirsty I was.  I went back to my room and lay  on the bed,  still sweaty and exhausted, trying to convince myself that everything that happened was  just a bad dream.

But it wasn’t  I learned afterwards that the tall man wearing the checkered polo  was my uncle. My mom’s half brother. When I  described  him to my mom,  all she  could  tell me was, ” si kuya.. Big Brother…) My Uncle had died for a lung cancer a month after I was born.  He lived in the  house next door, easily seen from  my room.

After he died, another aunt, a cousin of my mom’s lived in the same house. She also died of lung cancer. Unlike my uncle, however, she was a non-smoker and had a health-conscious lifestyle. Some  say that traumatic experience can open your third eye. I couldn’t see  spirits, but I can hear and talk to them.  Soon I was conversing with my dead relatives.  inside my room.

One time I had a friend over who also had a third eye. We shared stories about the dead. On one occasion,  she stayed  at my house to finish a stage design piece we  were working on. We were  going to present it to the director of a play we were doing.

The atmosphere in the room suddenly shifted  as if a train had passed, and I  heard her say, “I don’t feel good,  uwi  na ako  (I’ll go home now).” I escorted her  to the gate and she left in  a hurry. I knew she saw one of my “relatives”I. on the other hand,  felt something leave the  house with her.

The next day, she came to rehearsals.She was furious. She asked  me if I had  been astral projecting, because she saw me while she was taking a shower that morning.  I vehemently denied   that I could  astral  project.  She swore it was me  even though she coudn’t see the face.

The entity was my height,  slim,  and had  the same  posture I  had.  “Come back to the house. May sumabit sa iyo na multo (A spirit latched  on to  you). It’s my uncle, one of  my guardians.”  She went  back with me to the house and I asked my uncle to stay when she leaves. She soon left and  she no longer  complained  about being disturbed  in her shower anymore.

We used  to have this huge rubber free in  front of our yard. I knew there was a  duwende (dwarf) living under the ground.  It bore witness to all my hardships, trials  and silent  mouring.   One time,  my father ( God rest his soul) was burning trash  in the yard  and carelessly set aflame  the roots  of the  tree,  leaving a gaping  hole in  its trunk.

For a month he  couldn’t get out of bed. No doctor could determine what was wrong with him.  Another time, a friend of mine was bragging about an old  Wicca incantation he got from a book in the seminary.  He tried  to summon spirits in the yard. “My name is Dorothy,” something whispered in his ear. “What was that?” he asked me. “My great grandmother, ” I smiled. “Your chanting  worked.”

He turned pale and  started  pulling out a piece of paper and began chanting a protection spell.  He quickly said goodbye and went home.  One time I had  this big fight with a guy from my band, and we stopped talking  to each other. I often cried under the rubber tree.

Soon,  the guy’s father came to my  house and told me, “Kailanga ninyo mag-usap ni Bryan. Nasisiraan na yata ng ulo Nagsasalita mag-isa, ayaw kumain, hindi natutulog ( You and Bryan have to talk.  I think he’s going crazy. He talks to himself, doesn’t want to eat, doesn’t sleep).”  That wasn’t the only time.  I had another fight with a friend, and he told me I was the most pathetic creature he had ever encountered. I resented his remark and said,  “I hope you feel what pathetic really is.”

Months later,  I heard he was so destitute that he started  to seel his  body to gay customers.   He would charge 500 pesos to go ‘all  the way. I talked to him about this but  he stayed inconsolable. I never heard from him since. Sometimes, the dead and the supernatural don’t ask  for help.  Sometimes they  know it’s us who need the protection and/or the help.  I wish they would  go easy on my enemies though.

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