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Confused in Love Five (Part 8)

The Hard Decision As I entered the house feeling a bit tired from my date with Richard, Nakita ko si Miko. Looking so down and lost in h...

The Hard Decision

As I entered the house feeling a bit tired from my date with Richard, Nakita ko si Miko. Looking so down and lost in his thoughts. Hindi nya ako napansin na pumasok. I just stood there for a moment and stared at him reassessing my feelings for him. I know somehow, someday I've gotta make a decision. Kung sino sa kanilang dalawa ang dapat kong piliin. I am still not ready, pero alam kong hindi ko dapat ito patagalin. It is unfair kung gagawin ko yon.

After a while, lumapit ako kay Miko at tinabihan sya. I suddenly rested my head on his shoulder instinctively. Napalingon sya sa akin, a bit surprised by what I did. Napansin ko rin naman yung ginawa ko but it's too late nakasandal na ako sa kanya. It felt really good and it warms my heart.

Miko: Akhi...

I remained in my position as I answered:

Akhi: Miko, may problema ka ba?

He sighed and then closed his eyes and smiled bitterly.

Miko: If I say no, I'd be lying. I have a lot of problems right now. *sighs*

He rested his head over mine.

Akhi: If you want to open up, andito ako.

Again, instinctively, niyakap ko sya. What is wrong with me? It's like my actions are controlled by another force. He didn't move an inch. He just remained seated and his hands rested on his knees.

Miko: *Thinks to himself* If only I could tell you now that I am Gab... I'll tell you when the time is right Akhi.

I was puzzled. What does he mean "when the time is right"?

from a distance, nakatingin samin si Cindy.

Cindy: Nakakaawa naman silang dalawa. So close to each other, but still so far away.

She feels the urge to tell the truth but she respects Gab's decision. She slowly walked towards her room feeling sorry for both of us.

Mga ilang minuto din kami sa ganong position ng magsalita si Miko.

Miko: Nagugutom ka ba? Nagluto ako ng dinner kanina.

Thoughts suddenly run through my mind. Nung first time na pinagluto ako ni Gab noon ng adobong manok and it was the most awful adobo I've ever tasted. But instead of feeling funny about it, it made me feel hurt. I wonder if masarap magluto si Miko?

Akhi: Hmmm... Hindi naman masyado pero pwede rin naman. I'm curious about your cooking.

I pulled myself from that embrace and sat straight to look at him. He gazed back at me with that beautiful eyes and beautiful smile that was so fucking familiar, it hurts!

Miko: Tara, sabayan kita kase di parin naman ako kumakain.

He stood up and held my hand and pulled me up gently. Hawak kamay kaming pumunta sa dining area.

He sets some plates and cutlery on the table and some food. Sinigang ang niluto nya and judging by the smell, I'd say it tastes good. Ipinag sandok nya ako at nagsimula na kaming kumain. I was right... It really tastes good. For some reason nalungkot ako. I was expecting it to taste bad. I don't know why... Was I hoping to feel the same way as the first time Gab cooked for me? This was a cruel reminder to me na hindi si Gab ang kaharap ko. It's not fair for Miko. Natigilan ako at napansin nya ito.

Miko: What's wrong? Pangit ba ang lasa?

I snapped out of my thoughts and replied:

Akhi: U-uh no. Masarap naman.

Miko: Ba't parang nalungkot ka?

Akhi: May naalala lang kase ako.

Miko: You know what? Pinag aralan kong mabuti kung pano magluto. I have this one friend kase na masarap magluto and particularly sinigang is my favorite sa lahat ng niluto nya.

I just stared and listened intently.

Miko: Kase that one was the first thing na natikman ko sa luto nya. It reminded me of my mom's cooking.

I was surprised sa narinig ko. What is this? Did I hear it right?

Akhi: You know this is a familiar story to me.

Nabigla din si Miko when he heard me say that. He was caught off guard.

Miko: R-really? Haha *awkward chuckle* We must have the same friend. Uh na meet ko sya back in our neighborhood. Uh... some years ago.

Who am I kidding? This is probably just a coincidence. Like so many other things about him. Why do I want him to be someone he isn't? Hindi tama ang nararamdaman ko.

We finished our meal quietly.

Miko: Let me do the dishes Akhi. You go get some rest.

Akhi: Thank you, Miko.

Tumayo na ako para pumasok sa kwarto namin dahil narin sa bumibigat nanaman ang pakiramdam ko. When I got to my bed, I started reflecting on my feelings. I cannot go on like this. If I do have feeling for Miko it has to be because he IS Miko and not because of how I feel about Gab. I am in pressure right now. Kase I want to make a decision as early as possible. Para hindi na mahirapan ang isa sa kanila. I decided to give it a week or two.

.

.

.

Weeks passed and patuloy ang panliligaw nilang dalawa sakin. I was already falling for Richard and my feelings towards Miko never changed. It is the same strong feeling... yung love... But damn... Kase nga I still feel and see Gab in him... I can't shake it... But today I think it is the right time for me to make a decision. I knew somehow I've reflected enough on what is right. It's time for me to let go sa isa sa kanila. I called Richard over the phone and invited him to the park para makapag usap kaming dalawa.

.

.

.

At the living room, Cindy was scrolling on her phone when Miko came up to her.

Miko: Cindy, nakita mo ba kuya Akhi mo?

Cindy: Oo kanina ka aalis lang. He said he had something important to do.

Miko: Oh I see.

Cindy: Kuya, how are things going on between you two?

He sat next to Cindy.

Miko: I honestly don't know if may progress ba ako o wala. Nothing has changed between us.

Cindy paused for a moment then spoke:

Cindy: Kuya when is the right time to tell him? Kailan mo pa ba hihintayin na sabihin ang katotohanan? When it's all too late?

He looked at her, puzzled.

Miko: What do you mean?

Cindy: Kuya Gab, I've talked to kuya Akhi. He confessed to me na nahuhulog na ang loob nya kay Richard.

He clenched his fist and his teeth hearing that. Hindi nya kayang isipin na mapupunta ako sa iba. Cindy rubbed his shoulder to calm him. He shut his eyes and took a deep breath.

Miko: This is really quite a mess huh? Itong ginawa ko.

Cindy: Kuya... I know I blamed you before about Miko's death but looking back, *sighs* It wasn't really your fault. No one knew what was coming. Ang naging kasalanan mo lang is you didn't come clean from the very beginning. Sana sinabi mo nalang sa amin right away. It may have hurt but you would've spared us from the misery.

Miko: That was exactly the reason I hid these things from all of you Cindy. To spare your feelings. Pero pinagsisisihan ko na ang ginawa ko. I guess I'm just hardwired in making bad decisions.

Cindy: Kuya, you got the courage to tell me the truth kahit alam mong maari kitang kamuhian. You have to gather the courage naman this time to tell Akhi and everyone else about this and face the consequences now kesa patagalin pa at mas lalo pang magiging huli ang lahat. Right now, I think you still have a chance to fix things. Anong malay mo, maybe he would forgive you and actually be happy that you came back for him.

Pinag isipan nyang mabuti ang sinabi ni Cindy.

Miko: You know what? I think you're right. I guess it's time. There's no sense to keep this charade.

Cindy: Don't worry kuya. You have my support.

.

.

.

At the park nauna akong dumating. I was a bit nervous at di mapakali. I'm thinking about "how is Richard going to react?" But I am more worried about myself kung tama nga ba ang gagawin ko? I've made up my mind anyway. Wala nang atrasan. A few minutes later dumating na si Richard. He greeted me with a kiss on my cheek at walang pakialam sa sasabihin ng mga tao sa paligid na nakakakita.

Richard: Good to see you Akhi. Ba't nga pala naisipan mong makipag kita.

Akhi: Richard... I have to tell you something.

Kinakabahan si Richard sa kung ano man ang sasabihin ko.

Richard: What is it?

He looks at me, brows furrowed and worried.

Akhi: *sigh* I made up my mind...

.

.

.

Bandang 5pm nang umuwi ako sa bahay. Hinatid ako ni Richard and as I got off his car he drove away. Pag pasok ko, Miko was waiting anxiously for me.

Miko: Welcome home! Saan ka galing?

Akhi: I...

before I could answer, he cut in:

Miko: Nevermind. Tara sa kwarto.

I was confused but I followed him anyway. Pagdating namin sa kwarto, nauna akong magsalita.

Akhi: Miko, I have to tell you something important.

Miko: Ako rin may sasabihin ako sa'yo.

He held both my hands and has a sincere look in his eyes as he stared at me. Bumigat lang ang loob ko sa ginawa nya dahil sa sasabihin ko. So I decided that I have to tell him first what I am supposed to.

Akhi: Wait Miko, This is important.

Natigilan sya. He doesn't know what to expect. I took a deep breath and spoke:

Akhi: Miko... I am letting you go. Sinagot ko na si Richard kanina.

Natulala sya sakin at nabitawan nya ang mga kamay ko. He looked away and put his palm on his forehead and the other on his hip. He sighed and was holding back tears as his face turned sour. He's trying he's best not to break down. After a while of silence nagsalita ulit ako.

Akhi: I'm sorry Miko... It is unfair sa'yo. Kase I don't really know if my feelings are for you or am I just projecting my feelings for Gab through you.

He shut his eyes tightly and tilted his head upwards as he listened.

Akhi: Hindi ito tama. I can't keep pretending that you're him. I have to be fair to you. I'm so sorry.

Di na napigilan ni Miko ang luhang pumatak sa mata nya. He stared at me in silence as those tears rolled down his cheeks. Hindi ko alam ang gagawin ko. Ang sakit ng pagkakatingin nya sakin. I can't look him in the eyes. Parang nalulukot ang puso ko sa tingin nyang iyon. Then he decided to speak in a quavering voice.

Miko: So you've made your decision huh?

I couldn't look at him.

Akhi: Y-yes.

He approached me and pulled me in a tight embrace.

Miko: *sigh* I love you Akhi and if this is what makes you happy, then I'm letting you go.

Tang ina... Yes napamura ako sa isip ko. Ang sakit nang pagkakabitiw nya nung mga salitang iyon. Di ko ineexpect na ganun pala kasakit marinig sa kanya yun. Bakit? Bakit ganito? Ugh! I thought nakapag reflect na ako enough to be ready for anything but it turns out I wasn't. Napaiyak nalang din ako but I tried hard not to sob.

He pulled out from that embrace and just stood in front of me and stared on the window. Naalala kong may sasabihin pala dapat sya. So I asked.

Akhi: So... Um... What was it that you wanted to tell me?

He stared at me for a moment then spoke:

Miko: Babalik na ako samin. I don't know if Cindy would want to come along pero if she doesn't, please take care of her. Kung decision nyang ituloy ang pag aaral nya dito I think she's in good hands.

Ouch... Fuck! Mas masakit pa lalo ang pakiramdam na aalis sya... and my eyes are completely betraying me because tears won't stop falling from it. Hindi ako makatingin at makasagot sa kanya. Lumapit sya ulit sakin.

Miko: I guess this is goodbye. *sniff* I'm leaving tomorrow.

I replied but still not looking at him while I'm crying.

Akhi: Okay...

Miko: Can I...

His voice trails off.

Miko: Can I make a request?

Akhi: What is it?

He took a deep breath and spoke:

Miko: Can I kiss you? Just one last time?

I looked him in the eyes with tears blinding my vision that actually gave me strength to do that. I just nodded at him. Then he went in for a kiss. It was slow... passionate... loving... but it felt good but also bitter. After that kiss, he tapped on my shoulder and said:

Miko: Be happy okay? I'm sure Richard will take good care of you. Now stop crying and give me a smile. Hindi ko kayang umalis kung malungkot ka.

Ngumiti ako sa kanya but it was rather ugly and forced. He just chuckled but you can still see the bitterness in his eyes.

Miko: Yan... panatag na ako. Sige... makikipag inuman lang ako kay Harold sa labas.

Akhi: Bakit naman?

Miko: Nagtanong pa? *chuckles bitterly* You just broke my heart. It hurts you know. But I am a good sport. Alak lang katapat nito and a good friend to talk to.

I was confused. "A good friend to talk to?" The two of them barely even talked to each other dito sa bahay so how was Harold his good friend? But then I guess maybe they bonded when I was not around.

Akhi: I'm sorry...

Miko: Ganun talaga!

He waves his hand dismissively.

Miko: Busted ako eh, Hehe. Ano bang magagawa ko? Sabi nga nila kung mahal mo talaga ang isang tao, you have to set them free. Kung saan sila sasaya.

I hugged myself suddenly feeling so much regret about my decision.

Miko: Anyway... I got to go. Time to deal with these feelings in the only way I know.

He grabbed his jacket and walked out of the room. I laid on my bed and tried to close my eyes and sleep through the feeling.

.

.

.

Night Rounds Bar

Magkasama si Harold at Miko at naupo at the usual place kung saan nag iinom si Gab and Harold. After a few rounds, The booze kicked in. Then Harold decided to break the silence:

Harold: Pare ba't nga ba naimbitahan mo ko dito?

He stared straight at Harold and it was rather serious. Medyo naging uncomfortable si Harold.

Miko: Swear to me on your life that you will never tell anyone kung anong sasabihin ko sa'yo ngayon.

Harold: Mukhang seryoso yan ha?

Miko: Swear it!

He said in a commanding tone.

Harold: A-alright. I swear.

Miko: Harold...

His focus shifted on the bottle he's holding. He grips it tightly before saying:

Miko: Harold... ako si Gab.

Harold: Ano?!

Hindi sigurado si Harold kung tama narinig nya at baka sya ay lasing na so he asked again.

Miko: I said I am Gab! I never died! Someone else died because of me!

Harold: B-but... Imposible yan. I saw...

Gab: You saw my twin brother Miko.

Harold was dumbfounded. Then he felt a bit of anger and curiousity and said:

Harold: Dude! Explain! This better be good!

He looks at him with brows furrowed.

Gab explained everything and told Harold everything he needed to know.

Harold: Dude...

Tulala si Harold looking at the bottle he's holding. Napaluha sya ng konti and hugged Gab tightly. Medyo nagulat ang mga tao na nasa likod nila as this was really cheesy.

Harold: Fuck you bro! I thought I was already losing my mind! Kase ikaw na ikaw yan!

He doesn't really know what he feels. Mixed emotions talaga. Happy na galit na may lungkot. He is his bestfriend. He also grieved at the loss. Gab smiled bitterly looking at the ceiling and tears pouring.

Gab: Haha. Sorry bro. Sana naiintindihan mo kung bakit ko ginawa yun.

Harold: Gago ka! Di ko alam kong anong mararamdaman ko! Gago ka talaga.

He pulled himself out of that embrace and said:

Harold: Let me just do this one time bro.

Sinapak nya si Gab and the poor guy stumbled to the ground.

Nagulat ang mga tao and they were about to intervene but then Gab spoke to them.

Gab: It's alright guys! We're just playing around.

They sat back to their seats.

Harold: Sorry about that. I needed to do it.

Gab: No problem pare. I kind of deserved it.

Harold: Bro, honestly I don't understand why you did it but I know you enough. This is you. Making a decision recklessly.

Gab: I was about to tell Akhi the truth a while ago. Pero dahil sa sinabi nya, minabuti kong wag nalang. Pare... I am so brokenhearted.

Harold: Bakit? Ano bang nangyari?

Gab: Sinagot daw nya si Richard. Ayaw daw nyang lokohin ang sarili nya dahil ang nararamdaman daw nya para sakin is not for me but for a dead person.

Harold: *sigh* Pare if you're not brokenhearted right now I'd tell you that that's what you deserve!

Gab: I know.

Harold: But... *sigh* I don't know what else to say to comfort you. I don't want this to be about me but I am also in shock right now.

Gab: Then...

Gab raised his bottle.

Gab: I guess let's just cheers to that.

Harold: Yeah. Cheers to having you back you stupid piece of shit.

Gab: *chuckles humorlessly* Yeah. Cheers to the miserable and brokenhearted me!

Harold: Fuck yeah!

Then they furiously downed the whole content in one go.

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Mencircle: Confused in Love Five (Part 8)
Confused in Love Five (Part 8)
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