The sky hadn’t turned black yet, but the sun had already descended by the time we found ourselves serenely seated on the cool cement that bordered the empty pond at the Carabao Park. What the sun did leave, however, was an allusion of stars there and there, all pristinely set against a deep mauve sky. We had our feet sprawled in front of us as we stared vacantly at the vehicles going in and out of the campus gate, like blood in and out of a heart. The lamp posts that lined the nearby street blanketed us with its incandescence. For a short-lived moment, a car’s headlights sent a diaphanous glare to where we were and your eyes momentarily glimmered.
I was the one who broke the pensive silence. “Thank you for being with me through this difficult time—probably the lowest point of my life.” I looked at you and then stared back at the continuing influx of cars. I knew I sounded exhausted, but I was probably more exhausted than what my voice had allowed. “I know I’ll get better and I’ll move on eventually. By then, all of the things we’ve been talking about for the past weeks would barely matter. In the future, we may talk less and less; see each other more seldom, but I want you to know that this, this time—all that we have and are sharing now—we’ll always have this. Always.”
I was feeling rather sentimental and all together mushy which I must admit were the only prominent and consistent emotions my feeble mind fostered during the past weeks before that afternoon. And after all the times I’ve disclosed my sentiments to you, you had maintained a rather unflustered and almost comical composure, something I had admired genuinely if only for the fact that it always succeeded in pulling me to rational thinking. So one would surely understand my surprise when I looked at you and saw your eyes brimming tears that threatened to roll down.
You replied, “I also want to thank you, for the time, the trust and confidence. And, of course, the friendship.” Then your tears surrendered to gravity.
The sky had finally succumbed to darkness but this was obscure to me. In a profound sense, we were stars that night, embedded in the darkness, searing it with the brightness of the friendship we’ve realized.
Thank you for always reminding me that I am a published writer, that I deserve more than what I usually settle for, that I look handsome, and that I have great potential in most things. Thank you for constantly helping me refine my taste in literature and music, and teaching me, by example, to be comfortable in my own skin. But most of all, I’d like to thank you for showing me what a great friend is which you’ve done so by just living.
I would like to think that in my own way, vain as I may be, I had given your life an added pizzazz because you sure have done the same and so much more. I love you, dear heart. Happy birthday, Nics! :)