Tomorrow We'll See - PREVIEW

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Sylvia's spot along Padre Faura in Ermita was dimly lit, but she preferred it that way. That lamppost gave her a sense of mystery as she stood under the light. She would not attract unwanted attention; only those who would seek her out would find her, she believed. Also,the post had enough shade from the rain for only one.

The street looked as if it was sparkling, and the pitter-patter of the rain on the pavement was like a soft drumming tune.

She pulled down the skirt of her violet cocktail dress before removing one of her high heels, swinging her legs as the shoe fell off. She opened a compact mirror and hurriedly reapplied face powder on her thin, bony cheeks. She brushed her long, curly ash-brown hair with her fingers as she looked around her, and lit the last of her cigarettes.

It's gonna be a slow night, it seems.

She was already feeling uncomfortable, not only with the increment weather, but with her tight-fitting dress and shoes. But she just bought those luxury rejects off the nearby ukay-ukay for a good price, and she wanted to show off for a change.

A few steps away was an old bar where a live band played pop music all night while Caucasians played billiards and chugged craft beer. Many girls drop by that place to have a good time, and hook up with someone who's probably lonely, drunk, and stuffed with dollars.But snagging men that way wasn't Sylvia's style.

Half past ten, her cellphone beeped.

She noticed John stepping out of the bar and into a Lancer parked nearby. That slender, young American was a fixture in that place, and people sort of like being around him. He must have hit his quota early if he's on his way out, and he should be on his way home to his Filipina wife.

Sylvia snuffed out her cigarette as a grey van drove slowly towards her, its headlights and hazard lights glaring brightly. A few seconds later, a middle-aged man peered out of the passenger side's tinted window, and subtly called her attention.

She knew the language of the streets, the hand signals and gestures of those who needed people like her. She could deduce what they need with one quick glance. This one's easy to deal with, she thought.

The man was in a hurry; ten minutes will be enough. She can do him in five, she signaled. He was ready to shell out one thousand pesos. She gestured for five hundred more; she is guaranteeing quick and satisfactory service, after all.

He looked away, seemingly unsure whether to continue.But the moment Sylvia leaned over and pushed up her padded breasts with her left arm by the window, he shook his head and opened the door. He locked the door and leaned back on his seat as she unzipped his pants.


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