Happy Friday the 13th! Well, NOT so happy for some of you. AND the positive side is it’s probably over for some of you already. But anyway, what’s this post about? This is a gift I just drew up just for today. It doesn’t come in the form of cheering anyone up though because I’m using this day to present the last fan fiction that I would be writing in regard to Cyndi with Tony, Wallace, and Nic. What’s the second last one? It hasn’t come to light yet though will be posted in the future when I get that done. (Of course, it’s one of my usual long-winded ones.) What made me come to such decision as to exterminate my fan fictions with Cyndi in connection with the three guys? Honestly, they’re probably my favorite Cyndi pairings ever. Sadly, through all my lame attempts to create some kind of sparks had failed miserably all these years. So I thought I finally hang my hat. That doesn’t mean I won’t write about those artists anymore. I just said that it’s just in relation to Cyndi, NOT excluding them all from fan fictions from now on. So yes, I would still be working on fan fictions that have the three guys in them. Some notes before I post the story: (1) this was of course written today, (2) it was inspired by Tony and Cyndi’s song “Tormented“, and (3) the story is random like my usual ones. The title itself already reflected my moods relating with Cyndi and the three guys. But NOT seeking for pity points. Just saying. Without further ado, here it is (including disclaimers–OF COURSE):
DISCLAIMER: The following is of fictional work and should not be taken seriously or be accounted for actual facts in any way. It is not aimed to confuse or mislead anyone for that matter. It is not meant to offend or disrespect any of the artists mentioned in the work either. Its purpose only serves to entertain and share with other fans who also like those artists. Thank you for reading.
Cyndi descended the familiar rough stone path leading into the garden. She did not stop there because she spotted Tony on the other side, admiring the view. He looked like he had been there for a while now. In fact, he had probably stood there all morning waiting for the moment when the sun rose. Each step taking her closer to him caused her heart to increase its skipping. Just when she was about to speak up, calling out his name to declare her arrival, he dissolved into smoke. And just like that, she panicked and turned abruptly, searching for him everywhere and anywhere she could think of. Yet her feet fail her since it was her mind zooming faster than her motor nerves would allow. The next thing she knew, she had awakened in cold sweat. Like many nights before. Since the day she learned he was engaged to someone and was getting married soon.
You don’t love me, do you? The words echoed repetitively in Wallace’s mind. He knew the day would come when she would break up with him. It was a matter of time. But he just didn’t want to let go. They’d been together for so long. How could he accept the fact that he was not the most important person in her life? And the most ironic thing was having them both at the same wedding in the coming days. He needed to get creative with the upcoming meeting. Tony was not going to like it. But he knew he had to sever the ties. It wasn’t about saving face but more about his heart that was still feeling the tormenting.
Nic never liked being a replacement but if Wallace asked, then he had no choice except to agree. Tony didn’t like the last-minute change. But Tony had to go along with it anyway. Because Tony’s bride-to-be wasn’t going to let go of Wallace’s supposed partner. When push came to shove, they had two choices: called off the wedding–or give in. And Tony had chosen the latter. Yet Nic pondered what had happened to cause the breakup at such a time. But it wasn’t like he wanted the third degree from Wallace. At least not when it was rapidly approaching Tony’s wedding day.
Tony returned his glass to the table and waved the others off. He had enough. He didn’t want to be drunk. Not tonight. What he wanted to do was reminisce about the past with them. For just one last time. Tomorrow, after the wedding, he was off to start a new life with his wife. Also, at the wedding, Wallace was leaving for an unknown trip–to mend his heart. Nic? Nic volunteered to wrap up everything while he, himself, could enjoy the rest of the time with his wife without worrying. What about Cyndi? Tony didn’t know. She seemed strange since the day he returned to announce his upcoming marriage. It was like their group of four had a silent, mutual agreement to move forward without wanting to care about what the future would bring them. And without telling one another what that future would include.
“One more,” Wallace said, slamming his glass down on the table for emphasis. He was not letting the others go easily tonight.
“You know it’s his big day tomorrow, right?” Nic reminded Wallace.
Wallace turned and gave Nic a sharp glare. He didn’t care. At least Tony’s life was going to turn toward the better direction. As for the rest of them? As far as Wallace was concerned, Nic was going to be cleanup crew, he–himself–was going to disappear to a far place and become a chameleon, and Cyndi? He didn’t know. In fact, none of them knew. And he quit caring about her well-being since the day of the breakup. In fact, he was done caring for anyone after that day.
“No big deal,” Tony interfered. “I’ll just watch you guys drink.”
“The hell you are!” Wallace objected, shoving a full glass of beer toward Tony. “You’re not leaving until we’re all drunk. And that includes you.”
“I thought we’re out tonight to celebrate for Tony and not watch you soak in your misery,” Nic sabotaged Wallace again.
Wallace was about to confront Nic but that was when Cyndi appeared. She was still in her work uniforms. Wallace’s eyes barely raked past her before raising his hand to call the waiter.
“No more,” Tony said before Wallace could order some more beers.
“What are you doing, man?” Wallace demanded, turning to Tony.
“I know it’s not the best of time for you. But we have to stay alert for tomorrow. Wouldn’t it be too much if I show up late for my own wedding?”
Wallace scoffed. “So you’re acting all mighty now?”
Tony didn’t want to penalize Wallace for Wallace’s current attitude. He understood too well. It was too big of a blow for Wallace. It was also the reason why he had turned down the others’ ideas of a bachelor’s party. And had opted for a casual gathering with just the four of them. Because he knew that it was the three of them who had been with him throughout these years, growing up and changing their lives together. Not some outsiders who just wanted to throw some wild party as an excuse for a gathering.
“What’s with him?” Cyndi asked as she settled down at the seat between Tony and Wallace. She was staring at Nic–who was facing her at the moment–for an answer.
“Haven’t you heard?” Nic asked back.
Cyndi shook her head, confused.
“His girl just broke up with him.”
Cyndi gasped but recovered quickly.
“Yeah, laugh all you want,” Wallace muttered bitterly.
Cyndi ignored him, gesturing for the waiter to take her order. She, too, ordered some beer instead of the usual regular light drinks. In fact, while she was at it, she told the waiter to bring another glass for Wallace.
“Are you crazy?” Tony exclaimed, looking at Cyndi in bewilderment.
Cyndi turned to him with her icy cold glare. “Not everyone is as lucky as you to have found your happiness.”
“Speak for yourself, Miss Wang.”
Cyndi didn’t care to look at Tony anymore. She directed her eyes toward Wallace. “I just broke up with my boyfriend as well.”
It was then that Wallace sobered up to listen in. He exchanged a look with Nic like they were best friends again.
“It’s for the best,” Cyndi said. “Rather than dragging it out and hurting him even more.”
“You girls and your reasoning,” Wallace mumbled–his bitterness returning.
Cyndi still had her eyes on him, not backing down to his threatening tone–or his terrible attitude at the moment. “Would you rather be lied to?”
Wallace scoffed, diverting his eyes away from Cyndi on purpose. “Perhaps you shouldn’t give us hope at the beginning then. If you knew you couldn’t do it.”
“Let’s not talk about it tonight,” Tony interjected.
“That’s right,” Nic agreed.
Cyndi placed her handbag loosely behind her then and picked up the glass that the waiter just put down in front of her. “How about congratulating Tony tonight?”
Wallace smiled then. It was strange that he was, considering his dark moods previously. “That’s right.”
Nic didn’t wait for Wallace to change his mind again. He picked up his glass and placed it alongside the others. “To Tony’s new future.”
Tony knew he couldn’t turn them down so he risked another glass. Or at least another sip.
“We’ll always be friends, right?” Tony asked after he drank a sip–and the others a little more than that, especially Wallace.
Wallace’s amused smile turned on then. “What do you think?”
And Wallace wasn’t kidding. They were all heading toward a new destination tomorrow night. Who was to say they would meet again? It wasn’t like it was impossible. But not too probable.
And Wallace was right because, over the next few years, the course of their lives steered themselves way clear of one another. Whether it was intentional or unintentional, they had no idea. Yet they knew for sure that one day. Perhaps one day, they would reunite–regardless of how they vouched to never meet up again.
That little reunion happened on an autumn day when the leaves had already turned to various colors of the spectrum. And Tony was still married and happy. Even looking forward to being a father. Wallace, the bitter Wallace, was still bitter. Because he was never the happy-go-lucky among the four of them anyway. But he was no longer bitter because of lost love. Instead, it was because of a familiarity they could all relate to since they came to know one another. Nic, on the other hand, was ever so unchanging, welcoming their return and had been waiting for them all these years. His life had taken toward the path he had wanted, not dwelling on whether he would meet them or not once again. Because deep down in his heart, he knew they would return one day. Their curiosity would never allow them to stay away for such an extended amount of time. Not to mention this was what people called a lifetime. Cyndi? They couldn’t find Cyndi. Not at first. But all three knew where she would be.
Cyndi was in the garden. All three guys smiled upon seeing her there. Like they had expected. She still carried that dark, forlorn aura they seen her since the day she heard of Tony’s engagement. It wasn’t like they didn’t know. Or perhaps Nic and Wallace had known. If Tony had known, he wouldn’t expect her to attend the wedding so forcibly like that. Though they only saw her back by the fountain, it was enough. It was her trademark pose. And the crème scarf. And the light tan dress with the white hat. It was like she hadn’t changed since she left them that night. In fact, since they all left Nic behind that night.
“It’s good to know some things are still as predictable,” Wallace spoke up in his usual teasing tone.
It was rare that Wallace was the one offering any source of peace toward any one of them. Though deep down, they always knew he was grateful to have them as his friends.
Cyndi turned then upon hearing Wallace’s voice. She turned with an actual smile on her face. A smile that surprised them into speechlessness. What was more, there on her hand was a ring sparkling in the afternoon’s hazy sunlight. And Wallace’s smile made its appearance next. The rare sincere one, not the one reeking of mockery.
“Your Singles’ Club Card,” Wallace said, extending his hand toward her. And he meant it with sincerity.
“I’m sorry,” Cyndi said, still smiling and playing along with Wallace. “But I fed it to the shredder a long time ago.”
“Then you need to compensate us for the damaged property,” Wallace replied. He had meant himself and Nic.
“What are you talking about?” Nic asked, turning to Wallace. “You’re the one who should be compensating us for breaking the contract.”
Wallace smiled, knowing Nic had found him out. He stepped forward and made his way closer to Cyndi. He wasn’t demanding her share of the compensation fees though. He grabbed hold of her right hand with his left. Cyndi didn’t resist or make a move to undo his hand from hers. Instead, she returned his smile. They finally turned toward the other two.
“I bet you never would have thought of this outcome, huh?” Wallace asked. He was looking at Tony. Because Nic already knew through the similar designs of both rings.
Tony smiled then, admitting defeat. “Leave it up to you to upstage me on every single occasion, good or bad.”
Wallace still had on his proud smile. “Who would have thought that the two unlucky beings of your wedding would end up getting together when you want to announce another good news?” And the biggest irony of it all was being dumped by someone who loved Tony dearly and then ending up with another who once felt exactly the same about Tony as well. Though Wallace had more confidence with this one, and he had made the right choice that day when they both stumbled into each other two years back. If that wasn’t fate, he didn’t know what the hell it was.
Tony nodded. “One day…”
Wallace pointed at Tony. “No, there won’t be one day. Because we’re not leaving anymore. We have a new mission now.”
Tony had on his puzzled expression. “What mission?”
“Find that special someone for our buddy here.”
Then Tony understood. They all turned to Nic. But Nic just smiled, not making a big fuss like the last few times that they had teased him about his sad soul status. He pulled out his wallet and showed them a picture of a girl. In fact, it was a couple picture–with both smiling happily. Or so it seemed.
“Sometimes, you have to admit that you two aren’t the only ones with the surprises, right?” Nic asked. He meant Tony and Wallace.
“What’s her name?” Wallace asked, wanting to go the long way–instead of snapping at Nic upfront.
Nic still had on that placid, unscheming smile. “Amber.”
“All we need is more sunshine in our lives,” Wallace teased.
“At least we don’t have to worry that he’ll turn into some lonely old man anymore,” Cyndi reminded them all.
“Who knows?” Wallace said. “Maybe one day….”
“There won’t be one day,” Nic repeated of the phrase Wallace said earlier. “Because I know what I’m doing.”
“Unlike the rest of us?” Tony asked, his voice challenging.
They continued to wait without interruptions.
“Because I’m an old man.”
Wallace reached over and clapped Nic’s shoulder then. “You bet you are.”
It was just a joke. An inside joke. Because they all knew it actually meant that Nic was a careful person, once he decided something, he would never back down. And regardless of his passive exterior, he had more determination in him than all of them combined.
© Friday, January 13th, 2012