based on “The Grudge” sent by Blue Butter
Mr. Romualdez looked up, bleary eyes making out the image of the young doctor in front of him. He realized he had fallen asleep and he blinked to clear the vestiges of sleep that remained.
“Mr. Romualdez? Sir?”
“Yes, that’s me,” he replied, his hand extended. “You… what’s wrong with …” “Your wife’s asleep now, sir,” The doctor pointed down a hallway and began to walk. “But there are some things we’d like to tell you first, before you meet her.” Mr. Romualdez walked with the doctor. How, he thought, had all this happened?
He was young back then: carefree, well-off, and free to do what he wanted. He had dashing looks that made girls sigh, a shiny car that made men envious, and an attitude that made other people remember him, for better or for worse. But nothing satisfied him. Whether it was a party, or a drink, or even a girl, life had long ceased to have any charm for him. In short, he had suffered the sickness of the rich and young. He was bored. “It was a good thing that your wife was rushed here as soon as possible, sir,” the doctor said, his words filling the void that seemed to comfort him. “If she hadn’t arrived when she did, there would have been…”
He noticed that the doctor had walked past the rooms and into an elevator. Wordlessly, he followed, his mind on the past.
That summer night, he was in yet another boring party with his boring friends and the boring girls when he saw… her. She was perfect in every way- the dark hair that cascaded down her head to the brown, sultry eyes that held the breaths of every male in the room, the slender, sexy tanned legs that peeked from an indecently backless gown.
She sauntered over to his side, a drink in her hands. She gazed at him with her smoky eyes. “Hi, I’m Katrina.”
He was smitten beyond words, hopelessly lost in the passions of desire. They left the party soon after. They would be seen in each other’s company for a long, long while.
But then something happened. Even now, he couldn’t explain how or why it had happened. He just realized one day, when he woke up, that he was wasting his life. And that if he didn’t stop, he would eventually destroy himself with little sense at all. Maybe it was the stale scent of alcohol on his lips, or the haze that invaded his thoughts when he slumped over the sink, but he knew. And he had to do something about it. “What do you mean by this?” If the devil himself had appeared before him, it couldn’t have been any worse. “Ending our relationship now?”
He had to be strong, had to break his vices, had to end the self-destruction. Or alse they would kill him. And she was a vice, perhaps the worst vice of all. “you’ll regret this!”
He said nothing to her as she walked away, the door slamming behind her, nothing to the brief pain in his heart. He thought it was finally over.
” You must understand, your wife’s case is … unique.” The doctor took a left and put his hand on a doorknob. He looked at Mr. Romualdez with a serious look in his eyes. “Sir, you must promise me one thing.”
Mr. Romualdez looked at the doctor with puzzlement. “Whatever you see in here, you do not tell anyone else. Not even your wife. Are we clear, Sir?”
He nodded, and the two of them walked in. It was several years after the breakup and his hard years of partying. He had changed his ways, discovered the simple, spiritual joys in life, both in his work and in church.It was then that meet Maria. She is opposite of every girl that he gone out in his youth. She worked hard, prayed sincerely to God, and led a simple, unfettered life. Although he didn’t quite know what drew him to her, he knew that he had fallen for the shy, innocent pastor’s daughter, and that he wanted to spend the rest of his life with her. And to his joy, she shared the same feelings for him. They were married several months soon after their first meeting. He remembered that just yesterday, she wanted to take a walk. He was worried, for she was pregnant with their first child, her belly warm and round ‘I’ll be okay,” she said, giggling, as she put her hand on his, her eyes speaking the words that were unsaid “It’s just around the house.” She looked deeply into his eyes, her voice emphasizing every word. I’ll be okay,”
If he hadn’t allowed her to take that walk, would things have been different? “Your wife’s womb suffered massive internal bleeding, largely because of the embedded flesh and bone splinters from what had happened.”
He looked at the doctor, a question in his eyes. “It’s wasn’t just a mere stomachache, was it?”
The doctor sadly shook his head. She was crying when he arrived home from work, saying something about a woman that had come out of nowhere, laughing like a hag, and she had dead, brown eyes. A woman who looked like Katrina, but one that was twisted with hate. A woman who had touched his wife’s belly and grinned evily at her before disappearing. That night, the stomachaches began. “We managed to save your wife, and her condition right now is stable. But the mental and physical trauma of the situation may hinder your attempts to have children in the future.”
The doctor moved to a metal table, a blanket covering something on it. He swallowed hard before grasping the sheet.
“This is the first time I’ve seen anything like this, sir. And I pray to God this would be the only time that I ever see a baby die this way.”
With that , he removed the sheet, and Mr Romualdez was forced to gaze at the broken, crushed thing on the table. It was a human baby boy, but the only recognizable parts were the tiny hands and feet that were ripped from its body. The rest of what should have been his son was a mass of bloodied, congealed flesh that had been mashed like a piece of dough, liquid still leaking out of the shattered corpse as the bone and cartilage gleamed wetly in the harsh light. And somehow, he could hear Katrina’s laugh in the back of his head.