Sunday, July 25, 2010

The Fallen Masks:Excerpt from the Mendacity by BRAWTA

Crestfallen and petrified, Mercy Palomino came running through the door to get Caridad, screaming that Edra had threatened her. In a rage she had wanted to attack her but Mercy ran away to get help. Caridad always knew it would come to this, she had seen it brewing. Caridad and Mercy had a close connection and that did not sit well with Edra. Although everyone, even if some were reluctant, had reached out to Edra, that was not enough. It seemed as if when things were serene, it was a clue for her to stir up trouble. Caridad had no choice but to take disciplinary actions, it had passed time to think this would go away. Edra was foaming at the mouth with anger,her eyes were bulging and she spewed out words so mumbled that you would need an interpreter to understand. But Caridad recognised this ploy, Edra had used it many times before, when she was caught in the wrong. The fast talking and gibberish was meant to throw off any blame from coming her way. Mercy was equally angry but looked rather frightened and took this attempted attack very seriously.

That evening a division became evident, never to be mended again and when Mercy left the village for good, shortly after this unfortunate incident, Caridad was saddened by this disruption that tore them apart. One by one the masks began to crack from the other villagers and a full blown war of words erupted. No discussions, no mediation could quell this blow out and Caridad threw up her hands at this shouting match, this radical shift.

It got so bad that many of the villagers would not walk down the same street with Edra, they took a different path. From the get go they had wanted to go the opposite direction, away from Edra but gave in to Caridad's call for solidarity. There were no words of joy spoken at the lunch room, lunches were no longer shared even the village jester had dried up. They continued to celebrate birthdays but there were no more outings and this went on for about two more years.

The black cloud came back with vengeance, the melancholy mood set in again with Edra and Caridad had her hands even fuller. This day the masks began to shatter and the villagers sighed a relief,they had named her a persona non-Grata, their faces now say and they no longer had to wear a mask. There goes that half smile again, Caridad knew what that meant, once again she had brought sadness to the village and this time she had managed to drive one of the dwellers out. She was so full of herself that she had totally ignored the fact that Mercy had left to start a new life as she had planned.

Edra could not stand this silent treatment although she had caused this on herself, she pointed fingers and laid the blame elsewhere. She even turned on Caridad, the only person who gave her the time of day, not because she deserved it but because of her warm heart. How could she abandon this dweller as diabolic as she was? But Edra continued to fight against Caridad with her few posse, visitors to the village and her family members. Edra's campaign was meant to tear down Caridad and although her spirit felt broken for the moment she was not about to let this nincompoop trip her up. But was it too late? She left the broken masks as they were. She would no longer persuade the villagers to do what they were not feeling. She on the other hand would not give up, she did not think it was impossible to live peacefully together. This riptide she knew would go away, only a matter of time. Some called her a wishful thinker, a mender of souls but in all of this she held her head high. The erect posture meant she had some serious business to take care of to mend this village. The written reprimand handed to Edra shattered the last remaing masks, that of Caridad which had to be taken off to help her get a handle on this very serious crisis that had become an albatross around her neck.

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