Short Story

Short Story

Length: 1037 words (3 double-spaced pages)

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On an afternoon, in the quarters of the sakadas, Mang Sixto is playing a guitar with the chords of an emotional song, "Walay Angay", while her daughter, is playing outside the quarters. They were indifferent of each other for a while, but there is a sudden change in the mood of the two. The daughter of Mang Sixto finally notices the chords that her father was playing and along with the music is her father's very emotional presence. They were then engaged in a sudden conversation. The daughter interrogated her father of the about the sad song he was playing along with his guitars. Her father told her that he was nostalgic. The daughter then realized, it was the memory of her past away mother that was bothering her father. Mang Sixto somehow both agreed and disagreed to the girl's realization. But before her daughter was able to continue, Mang Sixto interrupted with his story of grief and loss of his wife and her beloved mother. But Mang Sixto ended the story with a joke that did not made her daughter burst into laughter but rather, a sudden dislike and disapproval. The joke which contains the love of Mang Sixto for another woman. Mang Sixto then compensated the feeling of her daughter with a change of mood in the music, where Mang Sixto is already playing a different tune, the tune that made her daughter dance and forget what had just happened. Then Mang Sixto confessed to his daughter his true feelings for the loss of her beloved wife, which was relevantly played through his music.

On the other side of the "hacienda", Castor and Onofre are discussing about the visitor that they will encounter within the "hacienda". A Jesuit priest which they feel pity for having left the seminary in exchange of the grueling life with the sakadas. Little did they know that the priest left the seminary not for good, but for a study that the sakadas do not have a hint of its purpose. As they go deeper into their discussion of the priest, they soon realized their worth as human, being degraded by their supervisor and his goons, and see the priest as the only light in their darkness that will bring them into exodus.

As the days pass, there is still no change in the way the sakadas live through and through. Then one morning, as the sakadas and their wives pile up outside their headquarters, they engage into a deep conversation.

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This conversation includes realizations as their worth as humans, being overpowered by another human of equal worth. Arguments arise as they head to work continuing their talk. Some are contented with how they live through each day, but some hopefuls are determine to change their lives, wanted to live fairly and follow their aspirations, but there's a thing that is holding them back, their smallness over the great. Little did everybody know that this conversation in the morning did lead to something that will shock them.

As Kardo's spirits soar with hope, little did the women know that a revolution against the owner of the hacienda is drawing near them. He gathers a force he believes will give them the freedom and the voice that they wanted, beyond his knowledge, all of his plans will be useless against a traitor, whom he never would have expected.

On a morning before a day's work, some of the sakadas, including Mang Sixto and Kardo, were confronted by their supervisor. The supervisor blames Mang Sixto for the sudden absence of their fellowmen on another field, where Mang Sixto as pointed out by the supervisor, is hold responsible for the debts of these workers. These debts, oblige Mang Sixto to pay with his earnings. This incident made Kardo and the rest agitated, for once again, they were mistreated and degraded. Kardo , for this time did not hesitate to contain his anger for himself.

For his arrogance towards the supervisor, he was punished within the fields where they gather sugar canes. He is subject to carry canes beyond their strength. As he does this, he was scrutinized, pushed, and maltreated.
Kardo shows courage in spite
of his inhumane punishment. This instance in Kardo's life has just his inner fire to blaze more fiercely.

On the night when Kardo was punished, the other sakadas, include Mario, Serafin, Mang Julian, Mario, Bastian, Fred, and Paeng, were having drinks of alcohol on the table outside their headquarters. They once again talk about their lives, and the same arguments arise.

As the night grows darker, an intention grows clearer, as Kardo, confronted Mang Sixto to join their alliance against the landowner. Kardo assures Mang Sixto that they have enough force and are armed with rifles. Mang sixto hesitated, but did not accept the upcoming rebellion.

The following morning, the housewives are stunned by the absence of their husbands early in the morning. Some are worrying, some are growing suspicious, and some like Lumen, wait patiently for any news. As they waited a little longer, the supervisor arrived at their headquarters to hear from them any news about the unusual absence of their husbands on their work field. As the supervisor grows desperate for an answer, he uses his gun to extract any information from them. He pulled out Mang Sixto from the group expecting him to squeal, but Mang Sixto refused to do so. He was shot, and lay helpless on the ground, as the housewives grow angrier. But at the midst of the commotion, they hear gun fires, which make the supervisor anxious and investigate where it come from. They are in shock as they hear gunfire after gunfire. And the other sakadas that did manage to return to their head quarters are now telling what is happening. They did escape but there are casualties, some of the sakadas are dead, including Kardo.

As days pass them by, things have changed. Paeng, the traitor, was rewarded, from being a sakada to assistant to the supervisor. There is no hope for them to prosper, or is there? The priest that they were talking about is coming, but is he too late? As they are expecting, is he the hope they are longing for?
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