"You're too late "
Eddy Gordo winced as those three grave words echoed again and again within his mind, as if stabbing him veraciously. The silence inside the black car was deafening and Eddy could not stand it. They were isolated from the sounds coming from streets full of people chatting and honking vehicles.
"You're too late
He sighed for the nth time. Behind his dark glasses, he furtively glanced at the young woman seated beside him. She was looking outside the window and Eddy could easily that she's grasping her own hands as if holding on for her own dear life. He remembered when Christie would hold his hands when she needed support. But that was before. Things had changed when he left.
As much as it was not easy for him, he knew that his master's death was something that had really broken Christie Monteiro's heart. Saving her grandfather had become Christie's purpose of living for so long now and losing the reason of her existence had taken its toll on her. What more was that he was not there for him during those dark moments she needed him. And now, does she still want anything from him?
"You're too late
"We're here, sir," the chauffer said, finally breaking the stillness.
Without skipping a bit, Christie instantly hopped out of the car as if on hurry. Eddy watched her departing form as she walked inside the house before following suit. He didn't know what to do nor what to say to her. He was too late. Too late to save his master. Too late to save the heartbreak that's emanating Christie right now.
Upon entering the cozy home where his master used to live with his granddaughter, Eddy slowly felt the pain of everything he lost for everything he worked hard for. The nostalgia of the familiar place was too much for him. Unconsciously clutching the door knob, he was about to leave when he heard his name called.
He slowly looked around and found himself facing a furious Christie. Her tanned face has a mixture of sadness and rage as her whole body shook from anger. The dark circles under her eyes were very noticeable and Eddy felt ashamed of himself.
"When will you stop hiding me in the dark and start telling me what's going on?!" she cried.
"Christie, you don't understand-" Eddy was saying but the Brazilian woman beside her did not let him finish.
"I don't understand? Don't you dare tell me I don't understand! How would I understand if you keep treating me like this!" Christie argued, her arms flailing wildly. "What do you think of me, Eddy? Can't you see that I'm not a kid anymore?"
Eddy looked away, not speaking. When he finally gained the courage to look back at her again, tears were already streaming down her face. The angry expression was gone and only the hurt was visible.
"I know you've learned to live your life without letting anyone get close to you. I know that. It's hard to break the shell you've enveloped yourself into and you think it's easier this way. But Eddy, I'm here. I'm still here. Grandpa is gone and I know we're both devastated but I'm still here."
Her voice was softer now, more melancholic. She continued on and on, assuring him. It was almost like she's pleading, as if she wants to understand so badly what's going on with him. But the man in front of her was not budging. He was frozen in place, just staring back at her behind those dark glasses
because he was taken aback by the words that escaped her mouth. He expected her to shout out him to hurt him at the most
He did not expect her to beg to him like this
like she's reaching out for him
like he was the one who needed comforting.
Somehow, he wanted to tell her that she's wrong. That he knows that she's there and she's the person he cares about more than anything, probably even more than her grandfather. But he just could not say it, as if something was stopping him. As if there's something wrong with the picture.
Disappointment slowly clouded her face for not getting any response. More tears stained her face as she turned her back to Eddy and walked towards her room with her shoulders slumped, closing the door softly.
Eddy was left alone standing, still holding the door open. The whole wooden frame started shaking, along with his strong grasp on it. He felt like throwing it away, punching the wall, punching himself. With so much fury, he slammed the door and the whole house almost shook. He heard the sound of something that fell by the table side. Reluctantly, Eddy approached it and was almost close to tears when he saw what it was.
A medium-shaped framed photo showed an image of him, his master, and Christie. It was during the time when the old man just had his successful operation. They were so happy and satisfied. Even he, himself was smiling. Here was his family. And now it's gone.
"But Eddy, I'm here. I'm still here. Grandpa is gone and I know we're both devastated but I'm still here."
Of course it's not gone. How stupid could he get. Christie IS still here, alive and well. And Eddy was very much grateful for that. He can't think of what he would do if something was to happen to her. She's the only one he has left in this world. And what was he doing to her? How many times had he left her to pursue what he thought was for the best?
He felt a pang of anger towards himself. What had he done? All he wanted was to save his teacher and protect Christie. All he wanted was his family to be safe and sound. He killed other people because he thought he could attain that. How foolish could he get?
Out of a sudden, Eddy was brought out from his reverie, wincing at the sudden stinging from his hands. He looked down at what he's holding and saw the glasses of the picture frame shattered with blood on it. His blood. Of course, this small wound was no equal to the many blood he had slain just so he could finally get what he had been fighting for. At least he thought he was fighting. And it was not even worth it.
With a sigh, Eddy returned the picture frame to the table. He removed his expensive tuxedo and used it to wipe his hands. He felt the pain with the action and he was tempted to emphasize the sting more just so that the physical ache will empower the emotional ones. However, the flow of blood did not soothe the pain, even as he pressed harder and harder.
He threw himself into the sofa, exasperated. At the same time, he tossed the bloody jacket away from him and removed his glasses, ignoring the throbbing pain of his wound. A deep sigh escape from his mouth and he felt himself tearing up. It was never easy to keep a strong façade when he's in front of Christie. But he could not seem to hold it anymore. First, he had lost his parents. Now, his master. He did everything he could but where had he gone wrong? Why did everything has to go against his will?
"What you do think of me, Eddy? Can't you see that I'm not a kid anymore?"
Eddy glared at his wounded hands as he heard again the words that he could not easily swallow. How could he just accept that the little girl whom he trained into a great capoeira mestre is now a grown up? He had always put a barrier between the two of them, categorizing Christie as his student, a young little girl, his teacher's granddaughter and nothing more. In time though, he had became fond of her and all he wanted was to protect her and make her happy. Because she's his family, right? It was hard for him to just accept that she really was not a kid anymore. She was finally a fine young woman who's not even blood-related to him. And of course, Eddy was just a mere male human who's not blind.
With these deep thoughts running through his mind, exhaustion slowly hauled over him until he collapsed into a deep sleep.
He was suddenly awakened by a burning sensation on his hands. He was surprised to see that they were covered with bandages. The pain he felt seemed to be coming from the ointment applied to his wounds. Confused, he looked around at the suddenly dark surroundings until his eyes landed on the sleeping figure beside him.
"Beautiful." That was the very first thing that came to his mind as he saw Christie in her white night gown, curled up and sleeping peacefully.
Eddy could not help admiring how beautiful the sleeping young woman was. He looked down at his bandaged hands again and came to the conclusion that it was Christie who cleaned his wounds. He could not help but be touched at the simple thoughtfulness of her.
He stood up from where he was seated and slowly scooped her up into his arms, making sure not to wake her up. A warmth feeling overwhelmed him as he watched Christie slumber while he carried her back to her room. This little woman means so much to him
even more than he would ever admit. Sometimes, he could not get helped but be overprotective with her most especially with her fond of wearing clothes that barely hide parts of her body, probably giving wild imaginations to the male species. And Christie has an exotic beauty admired by many. Then again, he's just a human who also happened to be a male.
But Christie was not just any woman. What Eddy liked about her most is her beauty within. Her cheerful personality, her strong determination, and most especially her love for her grandfather. And maybe her care for him as well, if he deserves it at all.
As Eddy was about to place her to her bed, Christie suddenly wrapped her arms around his neck, holding on to him.
"Eddy," she murmured.
"Everything will be okay, Christie," he assured her.
Christie faced him and the pain was so obvious on her eyes. Her eyes were very blotchy and red, a sign of the many tears she'd shed for her grandfather. Eddie wished so much that he could undo every wrong that had happened. He wanted to wipe that despondent expression away from Christies' face. If only he could do something that would not be a waste.
Despite the sorrow he's feeling, it was hard to ignore the electricity that was brought about by the physical contact between the two of them. With them being in their vulnerable state as of the moment, other emotions started to show up and Eddy could feel the surge of a tingling sensation that slowly emerged. It was too strong that it seemed to have overpowered every other emotional state beings they were currently at. It was a sense of desire and longing for that one person who's been with him all this time.
Attempting to fight the temptation, Eddy finally placed Christie back to her bed. He was about to walk away with his back on her when he felt a soft tug on his pants. He paused for a moment as the electric current ran through him again with her soft touch. He slowly looked back and was suddenly locked with Christie's gaze. At that instant, something swelled up from both of them, as if revealing each other's soul.
Before he knew it, their lips had already clashed together. It was like those emotions that were once locked down inside of them had finally burst out. Emotions that exploded passion for both of them. Despite every pain, every loss they experienced, they're still left with each other. And it even got stronger now that they're more frightened to lose the other one.
Eddy instantly pulled her into his lap as Christie wrapped her legs around his waist. Their kisses deepened and became more demanding, hungry for something they've been longing for a very long time without realizing it. One thing led to another. Suddenly, Christie really was a little girl no more. And Eddy was very sure of that.
A squeal from kids playing outside awakened Christie from her sleep. She slowly sat up and was surprised to find herself covered with nothing but her white blanket. A blush formed on to her face as everything that had happened last night came back to her. It was hard to imagine how it all had happened. How the two of them had tried to cope up with their loss through each other. Despite the expression of sorrow and pain with their act, there was still that satisfaction they were able to give each other last night.
Looking around, she wondered where Eddy might have gone to. Thinking that maybe he just went out to have a cup of coffee, she finally jumped out of her bed and put on her bathrobe. As she was about to go out of her room, something caught her eye. A sheet of paper with Eddy's handwriting was lying on her desk table.
Slowly, she approached her table with a very dreadful feeling. She couldn't help but imagine the worse what that letter was doing here instead of Eddy. With shaky hands, she picked it up.
The letter was very short. Christie's eyes quickly scanned the words as her face turned from confused to horrorstricken. As the message slowly sunk on to her, tears started streaming down he face. The piece of paper was crumpled and thrown away. With the fury she once felt came back, the Brazilian young woman buried herself to her sheets and dissolved into painful sobs all over again.