BENEATH A CLANDESTINE MOON
(A fanfic by Toothbrush of Pex)
Synopsis: Divine leaves for Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. She sees Tinni the night before. From Tinni’s point of view.
Warning: Mga maka DivMik-please don’t read this.
“You see that moon over there, Tinni? “
“ Yes, it is captivating…”
“More than captivating, Tinni, it is beautiful!”
Again, Divine looks up and gazes at the moon. The rooftop of one of the tallest edifices in Ortigas provides an unhampered view of this celestial body. With her body leaning on the glass hedge, she is slowly drawn to her thoughts. She appears motionless. Could she be finding solace in the moon? Her face suddenly glows with serenity. I am witnessing the hypnotic power of the majestic moon over Divine, the best of my friends, the heart of my heart…my love.
But she is leaving me. She is going to Rio to jump start her father’s furniture business. Out from her reverie, Divine turns to me.
“I will be seeing the same moon when I am in Brazil, Tinni.
We will not be far from each other, after all.”
I am startled. That Divine is thinking about our impending separation - brings me comfort. Her thoughts have always been beyond my comprehension. It is a consolation to know that tonight, I am part of that which matters to her.
So unlike before. So unlike last year.
Because last year, Divine was all about Mikhaela. Despite the promises that a heterosexual love team could make of her in showbiz after our Big Brother stint, she preferred staying true to herself rather than hurting an important person in her life. Mikhaela was that one woman, Divine wished to cross the Brooklyn Bridge, to climb the Burj al Khalifa and to cruise the River Danube with. Mikhaela was simply the world to her.
But the world spins around.
And lovers may find themselves nauseated in it. It was a Saturday morning, while we were rehearsing our dance presentation for the next day’s ASAP show, that I noticed Divine’s seemingly different agitated mood. Her dance has more verve. Her moves, more animated. Her swag, more elaborate. But her more energized motions couldn’t mask her melancholy. I have known Divine since our days of Big Brother. I immediately sensed that she was shaking something off her mind.
“Mikhaela left me for another, Tinni.”
Divine’s revelation shocked my entire system. Mikhaela, the almost perfect girlfriend? Mikhaela, the ever-supportive one? Mikhaela, the Bubba, who suffered in silence, for her great love of Divine? How could that happen? I was of the impression that their relationship was very strong, stable, indestructible - that I dared not confess to Divine what I truly felt for her. But here was Divine, dejected, admitting the demise of her relationship.
“She was fcuking somebody else on Valentine’s day .
And da*n her!!!”
Betrayal. A shattered promise of truth. How must one fix a broken trust? How must one erase the trauma of having been deceived on Valentine’s day? I don’t know. There were no answers I could provide. I felt Divine’s agony. It was beyond what tears can wash away. She was unable to cry out her hurt. She was drowning in misery. She grumbled and gasped for air. I told her to describe it so I may share in her pain.
“I wake up to mornings with a scathing hurt in my chest.
Every day, my wounded heart is immersed in a petri
dish of alcohol.”
I could only watch her cringe in anguish. I did not know what to do to ease Divine’s distress. I did not know what to do to make her forget her loss. Even if I wanted to bear all the grief for her, there’s a limit to what a friend could do. I provided her the company she needed. I became her crutch, her pillar, her rock.
A year later, here is Divine with me on the rooftop . She doesn’t have that appearance of melancholy anymore. Has she forgotten Mikhaela? Or has she mastered the art of covering up her emotions? I must know this before she leaves for Rio.
“How are you these days, Viney?”
“I no longer wear a heavily pierced heart, Tinni”
She isn’t hurting anymore? Really? What with her previous explicit description of her wounded heart immersed in alcohol, I would have gone insane if I were her! She should convince me that she is over her. While I have no standards satisfactory for my persuasion, I need to know her disposition.
“The truth, Viney, are you ok?”
“Look! The moon just hid itself behind the clouds”
“Answer my question, Viney!”
I stomp my foot once to show irritation. Brazil is far and I may not be able to provide her the solace she may need. Divine turns to my direction and gives me this quizzical look.
“Let us dance, Tinni.”
“Evasive! Are you really ok, Viney? “
“May you please put your arms around me?”
“You are distracting me. C’mon, I need your answer now”
Divine lets go of her familiar flirtatious beam, her perfect set of teeth and dimples manifesting. How can one refuse such cuteness. My defenses are fast wearing off.
“Just give me the pleasure of this dance
and you will know, Tinni”
Without waiting for my answer, Divine walks towards me and wraps her arms around my waist. And instinctively, in sweet surrender, I lock her in an embrace. I could feel the warmth of her body against mine. I could smell her favorite scent, the same fragrance she wore during the days of Big Brother.
“It is up to you now, Viney.
Lead. And I will follow ”
Gosh. Why did I say that? What is happening to me? Why am I giving up my power over of these moments to Divine? I have always been in control of things. As an athlete, I have been trained to be be in control or else I will risk losing the game. Tonight, I am at risk of losing my heart all over again.
“Play this music in your mind, Tinni…”
Ah, moon river. My daddy plays that song every Saturday morning. I know the lyrics by heart. And I start hearing Divine hum the music as she leads me to dance. In my mind, I hear the words of the song: Moon River, wider than a mile, I’m crossing you in style someday…
Divine presses my back with her arms thus drawing me closer to her. I no longer feel any space between us. We are swaying to the music we hear in our minds. Our bodies move to the beat of the song which pulsates from our hearts.
Two drifters off to see the world, there such a lot of world to see, We’re after the same rainbow’s end, waiting round the bend…In my thoughts, I hear myself converse with Divine. Oh yes. There is so much of the world we should see, Viney. Take me to the Brooklyn Bridge. Take me to the River Danube. Take me To Rio. Take me to wherever you are going…And in return, I will take you to my heart!
“Oh dream maker, heart breaker, wherever you’re going, I’m going your way.” Divine rests her face on my shoulder. I could feel her warm breath caress my neck. I could feel the life in her. I close my eyes to savor this moment. How I wish that this will never end. I am now drunk with these sweet moments unfolding beneath the moonless sky. Divine continues to hum the melody. But I need to know the answer…
“Do you still love her, Viney?”
Divine raises her head and looks at me. She fixes her eyes on me. Intently. There seem a thousand words that poured into my head. Raging thoughts fill my mind. What is she trying to tell me? I cannot fathom her intention. Why is Divine staring at me like this?
“Do you still see her in my eyes, Tinni?”
A realization of great consequence suddenly envelopes my being. My heart skips a beat. I am dumbfounded with what I am seeing. She sees my dazed reaction. Her lips form into a smile. Divine embraces me once more and whispers,
“Thank you for this dance, my huckleberry friend.”
Yes, I got her answer. While Divine has already left , I remain on the rooftop waiting for the moon to reveal itself once more. Yes, the same moon that will keep Divine and I together.
I am speechless still.
For in Divine’s eyes, I saw my reflection.