9 Iris 9
As soon as I finished filming my clip for Sara, I took a rest and laid down on the blanket just so that I could try to ease my ragged breathing. As I lay, I observe various cloud formations and I took my time enjoying it. After all, this might be the last time that I will enjoy the skies. Maaaring ito na ang huling beses kong masisilayan ang kulay asul na kalangitan, mga puting ulap na tumatabing at nagbibigay lilim mula sa nakakasilaw na liwanag mula sa araw, mga ibong buong layang nakalilipad sa himpapawid na wari'y walang pinoproblema. For the very last time, let me indulge myself with the things I would no longer be able to see.
"And you have come to the very last video, my dear viewer. How was the journey? Did you find it entertaining? Did you find amusement through my pain and suffering? Oh don't feel bad, I never wanted to make you feel bad, I want you to continue living your life. But now, after watching this videos, I would request for you to live your life being sensitive to others. I want to impart with you the value of sensitivity for that's what the people around me lacked." I gave myself a break for almost an hour before working on this last tape. I have little time left for my stay here in this lifetime yet has a lot of time to finish the last of my last memories. I want to be jubilant for I can already feel the end but at the same time but why am I feeling like this? I can't seem to find the right the word to describe it but I can tell that I'm not feeling good, I feel like I am about to unearth something so big. Well, kung iisipin, this last video is indeed something big. "You are watching Iris Kyle of the reputable house of Figueras, 3 years straight model student awardee, academic achiever, child of Anastacia Rose and Jonathan Figueras, little lamb to my elder brother Alexander, bestfriend to Frances Arra Ramirez, partner of Joseph Paul Rosales and now the empress of the underworld. Quite a long introduction, isn't it? But you have to endure the same way as how I have endured all the pain that I've gone through. Isa pa, that's my last introduction so might as well. This video will be the last of what I have prepared for all of you para naman alam ninyo ang mga pinag-daanan ko. This will all help you see things in my perspective para hindi naman kayo blinded as to why I resulted to voluntarily submitting myself to become Persephone's equivalent."
"You have to bear yourself for this last one for this is something scandalous. Know once again, that I am only telling you the truth because that's the only thing left in me. And if you are doubting, ask yourself again, why would a dead gay guy lie?" Napa-tigil ako sa pagsa-salita for I didn't know how to proceed. I am being enveloped by fear. I fear for the people around me. "Being my school's academic achiever and role model, I have been a target of not only praises and compliments but also of rumours. So for this very last video, I will be confirming a longstanding rumour. Oh, even from where I am right now, I can feel your growing excitement. Ganoon ka na ba ka-excited para may mai-pamalitang tsismis sa iba? Kalma ka lang, you got exclusive access on this gossip."
"To be very honest, I do not know how to start this video. Sana nakikita ninyo on how much I am trembling right now because I am so scared of unleashing my deepest and darkest burden. I am scared of what this video will cause. I am scared for what my loved ones will feel. Ang dami ko masyadong ikinatatakot dahil ang huling taong pag-uusapan natin ay ang siyang humatol para ituloy ko ang plano ko. This person sealed the deal. And I am scared because I would no longer be around to defend myself in the web of lies this person will weave just so that he'll get away with this. So I request for you to help me uphold justice, please do not let the truth be tarnished with someone's power and influence. For once, help me."
I took a deep breath as an attempt to calm my nerves. "You are the subject of this video, Jonas Figueras. You complete this elite list. Now, I want all of you to stay tune, you all have to know what Jonas did that sealed my deal."
"For those of you that is unaware, Jonas Figueras is one of the brothers of my father. While my father is the youngest among them, Uncle Jonas is the third eldest among the five of them. Same as father, Jonas Figueras is someone with a reputable name in the world of business. Jonas is the president of the company where you pay your water bills. He also owns the biggest water amusement park in all of Asia. Actually, para mga silang Big Three ng Olympus, eh. Together with their other brother, they're like Zeus, Poseidon and Hades. Tatay ko ang Zeus because my father presides over an electric company which is like Zeus' symbol. Uncle Jonas, as you might have probably guessed, is Poseidon because of the nature of his companies. While yung isa pa nilang kapatid owns the leading insurance company in the country that somehow relates to the God of the Underworld."
Masyadong abala ang magkakapatid na 'yon sa pagpapayaman nila. I remember, madalas kong tanungin ang Mom noon kung bakit kailangan sobra sobrang mag-trabaho nila, kung bakit parang hindi sila nakukuntento sa rangya ng pamumuhay nila. Later on, I realized that maybe some people are made that way. Some people might have been made to not be contented.
"Uncle Jonas has a huge resemblance with my father. And with that being said, medyo ilag ako sa tiyuhin kong iyon but no, he likes being around the house and he likes talking to me about any sort of things. He's like that annoying relative we all have that we can't do anything about dahil sa nagbibigay respeto pa rin tayo kahit papaano."
I no longer remember kung kailan nag-simulang bumisita ang Uncle Jonas sa bahay, ganoon na siguro siya ka-tagal bumibisita sa'min na hindi ko din maintindihan kung bakit. I mean, yung sarili ko ngang tatay halos hindi na namin nakikita sa bahay dahil sa mga kabit niya at trabaho eh. Uncle Jonas is as equally busy as my father that's why it still makes me wonder how he's able to maintain his habit despite his busy schedule.
As per his visits, just like what I told awhile back, he likes bugging me with all sorts of stuff. Madalas nga, sa sobrang hindi ko na ikinatutuwa ang mga ginagawa ni Uncle, tinataguan ko siya o kaya naman ay nagkukulong ako sa kwarto. But no, he was never disheartened with what I am doing, para lang siyang si Arra na hihintaying lumabas ako sa kwarto para kuliting muli. I know, I am being disrespectful dahil sa ginagawa ko but I just can't stand someone that looks just like my father doing all that Uncle is doing. I can't stand someone who deeply resembles my father to crack jokes at me, to make faces, to share me gossips. I don't even think anyone can stand that, hindi ko ma-isip na mayroong tao somewhere out there that can endure my situation.
"So, why is Uncle Jonas here? What did he do? What did he not do? Care to take any guesses?" Panandalian akong nanahimik to give an impression that I am listening to a nonexistent individual, to look like I am interacting with the viewers. "I will tell you the story then I will let you find out by yourself what Uncle Jonas did, alright?"
"It was one of the breezy evening weekend of a school month when I was left all by myself in our house. It was an unusual night kasi madalas naman kasing nasa bahay lang ang pamilya ko but that specific night, my parents went out for a date and my brother was on an out of town meeting. Ako lang ang natira sa bahay namin except for some househelps." I could feel my heart constricting with each word I say, it felt like I was slowly and painfully being drained off of life. "I was at my room, lazily rummaging through my closet after talking to Paul, when Uncle Jonas entered my room with no announcement. Nalaglag ko pa nga ang ilan sa mga naka-sabit na damit sa gulat nung makita si Uncle na nasa may pintuan at naka-tayo habang naka-ngiti. I knew I was getting irked with him with what he did but I had to restrain my emotions, I had to sound like everything is fine when I asked him of why was he in my room. He continued sniggering as he walked towards my bed and sat on it. I initially raised my eyebrows noong wala akong marinig na sagot but then my brows gradually furrowed. Something's wrong. Something inside me was acting up like a bell that was alarming me of a potential danger. I asked my Uncle, with all the remaining politeness that I can muster, to get out of my room kung wala naman siyang pakay but then he motioned his hand for me to sit beside him. I gently shook my head and took a step back to convey my hesitance but he stood up and dragged me to the bed. At that time, the bell in me is already flaring with much intensity na para bang may natural calamity na nagaganap. Fear was slowly creeping into my veins and was consuming me. And then he talked, he was asking me of my being. Kamusta na daw ba ako, kamusta na daw ang kapatid niya, he was asking me a lot of things."
It ain't easy to control oneself against a variety of emotions that is filling you that's why I have always admired people who's good at it. At that time, sa hindi ko maintindihang bagay, nangingimi na akong sumigaw upang tawagin ang atensyon nung mga kasama ko sa bahay o kaya naman ay muling tawagan si Paul. Hindi ko maintindihan kung bakit labis ang takot na nararamdaman ko para kay Uncle at hindi ko magawang makapag-isip ng matino noong mga oras na iyon. I kept on looking at my surroundings, thinking and finding anything that might help get away from him.
"Fear and panic has completely consumed me kaya hindi ko agad naramdaman ang kamay ni Uncle na pa-unti unting gumagapang sa mga hita at braso ko. No, do not think that I enjoyed it dahil agad agad kong inalis ang magagaspang niyang kamay pero muli niyang ibinalik iyon ng mas marahas. I tried shouting for help, believe me, I did! I tried calling the attention of the househelps pero pinaibabawan niya na ako saka tinakpan niya ng kanyang kamay ang aking bibig to muffle my voice. But I still tried to fight him despite the fear, I gave all the force that I have to bite him so that I could shout for help but like a villain, he quickly recovered tapos ay ilang beses niya akong sinuntok sa sikmura habang may gigil na sinasabi how bitch am I." Butil butil ng luha ang lumalandas sa aking mukha na para bang isang sirang gripo since I started reliving my most dreadful day. Everything is so clear and vivid it felt like it is a movie being played in my mind. Fear, pain and anxiety went back and hugged me like an old friend. "Dahil sa ilang beses niyang paninikmura sa akin, hinang hina ako at hindi na magawang maka-laban nung magawa niya akong mai-ayos ng pagkakahiga at maitali ang aking mga kamay sa mga poste ng kama. My entire self is too languid with the pain and exhaustion from the punches I have received to stop my dearest uncle from what he was doing. My visions became blurry because of the tears that's pooling in my eyes, tanging pag-iyak na lang ang nagagawa ko dahil binusalan na rin niya ang aking bibig gamit ang kanina'y suot kong damit na pwersahan niyang hinubad sa akin. I no longer recognize my Uncle, the man in front of me, smiling wickedly and eyes filled with lust is not a human. I was with a demon and he is getting more aroused with my tears, he's getting more excited with my fears, he's getting feverish as he touches me again."
"Pa-ulit ulit niyang sinasabi kung gaano daw ako ka-kinis na para bang isang tunay na babae at kung paano ko raw siya pina-sabik habang minamasdan niya ang aking kahubaran. I tried struggling away from his touches but the efforts were futile because it felt like he was draining all my strengths as he seemed so powerful, so mighty, so strong." I was trembling, I kept on wishing that someone knocks in on my door and check on me, I kept asking for all this to stop but no one came. "He first removed his clothings then went back on top of me and there, at that time, he was successful in taking me. He took me hard and fast and all I felt was pain. I was in a lot of pain that caused me to pass out."
Passing out at that time became my solace. There, I did not feel any pain. I was not scared of anything or anyone. I was alone, yes, but I was not lonely. Whatever pain I have encountered that night, hindi ko siya naramdaman noong mawalan na ako ng malay and I badly wanted to stay in that state. Gusto kong manatiling walang malay na lang dahil hindi ko na alam kung saan pa ako kukuha ng lakas upang muli kong maranasan yung mga sakit at hirap na dinanas ko.
"But do not think that it was over. Actually, he was just getting started. I mentioned that I passed out from the pain, right? Shortly after, I came around with him pounding himself inside me again. He was taking me again and the pain I was feeling doubled. And I cannot do anything dahil maliban sa sakit na nararamdaman ko, pagod na pagod na rin ako. I was so exhasuted na hindi ko na ginawang manlaban at hinayaan na lang siya sa mga balak niya. Ilang beses kong pinagdaanan ang sakit na iyon mula sa aking tiyuhin, mula sa isang kamag anak. Nang makuntento siya sa ginawa niyang kahayupan, ngingiti ngiti niyang hinaplos ang aking mukha at sinabing ang sarap kong parausan."
He untied my hands and covered my body filled with bruises by my blanket. I felt so weak that I didn't move even an inch after he left. I just laid there, looking at nothing while I cry myself out. I feel so empty, I feel nothing, I feel like Uncle Jonas took all that is left of Iris Kyle and I am not myself any longer. That night, I wondered what did I do wrong to deserve all this. What did I do to be this broken? That night, after washing myself and changing the stained bedspreads, I realised that there's nothing left of me to continue living.
I smiled bittersweetly when I looked at the camera. Finally, I was able to unearth my darkest secret. Ngayon, wala na akong itinatago. I feel free. But I know that my freedom will be short lived dahil I am almost there, I am a few steps away from my end. "So yes, what I told you confirms one of my long standing rumours. I am no longer a virgin. No, Aaron was kind enough not ask it from me and Paul as well. My chastity was forcibly taken from me by someone who is supposed to treat me dearly. You are one of the reasons why I ended my life, Jonas Figueras, for you sealed my deal. You broke my sense of family. You made me believe that demons are everywhere and some of them disguises as the people you are related by blood with. You took what is left of me. You broke my body."
Mariin akong napa-pikit ng matapos ang huling dahilan kung bakit ako sumusuko. I am trying to collect myself but it is hard because I have to continuously wipe this tears that just don't stop from falling as well as calming my ragged breathing. Ang dami kong hirap and now, I am so close to my ending. Finally.
"Jonathan Figueras, Aaron Pascual, Joseph Paul Rosales, Frances Arra Ramirez, Sara Gomez, and Jonas Figueras, you are all my reasons why. Each of you has taken the role of conquering Iris Kyle Figueras until I'm nothing but dirt. Each of you took pieces of me and did horrible things to it. And I am hoping that I will be your last victim, umaasa ako na walang iba pa ang makararanas ng mga pinag-daanan ko sa inyo. I am hoping that you all now start living your life with sensitivity to others dahil kung hindi, maaaring may sumunod pang iba sa akin and that will make my death otiose. I am hoping that my death will be a wake up call for everyone to be mindful of others and to be aware that each and everyone of us has varying levels of pain tolerance. Alam kong malalakas kayo but I am not like you guys, I can only take so much. I have long past reached my saturation point."
The gentle breeze made the leaves of the sprawling trees dance once again and together with the chirping of birds, they seemed to form a show for the senses. I am glad I spent my last remaining hours here, I spent it admiring the beauty of nature. I will surely treasure this. "Thank you, my dearest viewer, for staying with me this whole time. Thank you for trying to get to know me through the videos I prepared. Thank you for hearing my emotions out. I can go on and on thanking you pero aabutin kasi tayo ng mag-damag at wala na akong ganoong ka-habang oras na natitira. But again, please know that I am grateful for hearing my reasons and that I am sorry that I will need to leave you. Alam ko naman na hindi mo ako kagaya, you can and you will handle my passing. So paano ba 'to? Hintayin na lang kita sa after life? I will wait for all of you, no matter how long that may take, and once we are all complete, babawi ako sa maaga kong pag-iwan sa inyo. Pero habang ako pa lang ang nasa after life, baunin niyo ang pagmamahal ko dahil iyan ang tanging hindi makukuha ng kahit sino man sa akin. No one will ever be able to take away my love for all of you."
"This has been me, Iris Kyle Figueras, saying thank you, I love you, and good bye."