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"I thought you don't want to talk about personal matters, Rivero." at tumingin nako sa gawi nya raising an eyebrow.

"Just answer me." Simpleng sagot nya. Ininom ko muna yung tequila bago ako sumagot.

"May reasons ba or wala?" He looked at me begging for an answer.

"Both. I know people leave but I just want an answer. Paano kung iiwan ka ng taong mahal mo?" I didn't know I'd see this side of him. And come to think of it, we've known each other for 5 days and here we are talking about people, leaving.

"You know both hurts. Yung iiwan ka with reasons and without. Pero mas masakit yung without. Kasi maghahanap ka talaga ng rason kung bakit iniwan ka. Saan ka nagkamali yung mga ganyan." Umiwas ito ng tingin sakin.

"Lovelife mo?" I asked. I can't clearly give an advice to someone kung di ko alam anong point ng pag gaganto nya.

Hindi siya umimik. I guess he won't answer me. That's just too personal. I think he's training himself kasi kung magiging doctor ka you have to really be private about everything.

Naglakad ako papunta sa dining place at kumuha ng cigarette. I was smoking nung umupo din siya sa harap ko bringing the drink.

"Can I have one?" Binigyan ko siya ng isa. I'm not even shocked. It's a stress reliever.

A moment of silence. But this silence is not awkward at all which makes it weird kasi normally when you don't know the person ang awkward lang diba?

"My mom's diagnosed with cancer. Stage 2. Liver cancer." I bit my lip. Hindi ko alam how to comfort a guy.

"Shit." Yan lang ang nasabi ko. I don't know if I should hug him or ano. Should I tap his shoulder and say okay lang yan? I don't know.

"I know."

"Stage 2 pa naman. I'm sure she'll get better. Positive ka lang." I'm sure prayers work. Tumango lang ito. I know guys they don't want us girls to see how vulnerable they are.

"Iniwan ka na ba?" He asked. I chuckled a bit causing him to look at me.

"Curious ka?" I countered. Iniwan na ba ako? Hindi ako alam eh. Baka?

"So what if I am?" I smiled. Nanghahamon ka ah.

"Why do you wanna know?" That topic is what I'm really avoiding. Yea, it's been two years since he left. Pero ayoko nalang magsalita. That was traumatizing.

"You want me to be straightforward?" Hamon nya ulit sakin.

"Your call."

"I just find you mysterious and I find it attractive kasi you respect privacy. You don't have a lot of questions." If you just know. Dami ko ng tanong sa sarili ko. Napagod nalang din ako kakahanap ng sagot. Isang sagot lang naman hiningi ko eh. Di pa nabigay.

"If you were to answer the question. Ano isasagot mo judging me?" Ngayon, ako naman ang nanghamon sa kanya.

"Dodging the question when I asked you. I'm sure you tried. Iniwan ka ng walang reason." He stated.

"Well, that's true."

And again, we were both silent nanaman.

"Does it hurt?" Masakit ba? Hindi ko alam eh. Baka manhid na ako sa sakit.

"Siguro."

"Ang gago naman." Sinabi mo pa, Rivero.

"What if babalik siya with reasons? Babalik ka?" I never thought of this. Paano nga ba? Marupok ba ako?

"This is not a movie nor a story. Reality lang? Ba't ka babalik sa taong iniwan ka na walang rason?" I stared at him for a while at agad kinuha yung tequila at ininom.

"But you'll never know. What if he has a good reason?" I chuckled.

"If you respect someone, you wouldn't leave them hanging. Kahit na lang respeto as a person hindi na yung pinagdaanan nyo."

"Your maturity handling things says a lot bout you." Compliment ba to'?

"Thank you."

Silence enveloped us. Nakita kong uminom siya ng tequila. He was thinking of something I don't know.

"Just a hypothetical question" He started.

"What if naging tayo?" He is full of surprises. Yung di mo alam kung anong lalabas sa bibig nya.

"Will you hurt me?" I know everyday we're gonna get hurt. Pero kasi I want that hurt na worth it.

"Intentionally? No." He lit a cigarette at tumingin sakin.

"I wouldn't leave you without a fight." he paused.

"I wouldn't let you sleep at night thinking about not being enough." And for the first time, I smiled. Yung totoo.

"Buti ka pa."

He smiled.

"We can't choose who we love. Pag tinamaan ka, wala na." I agree. Wala eh.

"But if you know you'll get hurt big time. Susugal ka parin ba?" here we are with his questions na makes you caught off guard.

"Kung iiwan ako with reason. Kaya kong sumugal ulit ng 6 years."

"Tangina. 6 years kayo?" Shocked na tanong nya. I just nodded at uminom ulit.

"I have a question."

"Go spill it." I bit my lip trying to find the exact words.

"If I'll let you in sa life ko. Will you be chronic or acute?"

"Chronic, Akilia. Always, Chronic."

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Acute - panandalian
Chronic - pangmatagalan

Ricci Rivero, MD Basahin ang storyang ito ng LIBRE!