BY Ruth M Garica-Marmolejos
It was the day of the party, and everything was in order. The party was at the house in the parlor. There was a long table near the wall, with different kind of food, pastries and a big cake in the middle. Paulie was overwhelmed. “Everything is so nice.” Paulie said. “The decorations, the food, the cake, a lot of people are here already. There are a lot of pretty girls too. I wonder where Cachita is.”
“I am right here.” Cachita said. “I just came from the kitchen making sure everything is alright, but father told me to come out and enjoy the party. Father is taking care of everything.”
When Paulie saw Cachita, his eyes lit, with a smile Paulie said. “Cachita, you look beautiful.”
“Thank you.” Cachita said. “You look very handsome yourself. Where is River?”
“River is still upstairs.” Paulie replied. ”I think he is nervous about meeting people. Drone will go up to get him.”
“My friends are coming and I want you and River to meet them,” Cachita said. “Can you dance Paulie?”
“A little.” Replied Paulie. I learned at home with my father. I don’t now if it is the same here, but I am a fast learner if you teach me.”
Cachita led Paulie to the dance floor and said. “It is slow music, so it is easy, listen to the music and it will guide you.”
Paulie put his arms around Cachita’s small waist, and Cachita put one arm around Paulie’s shoulder, and they began to dance.
River walked down the stairs and into the parlor. Drone introduced River to all the guests and Paulie walked over and said. “River the place looks very nicely decorated, if there is anything you want to know or need, let me know.”
“Thank you Paulie.” River said. “Go and enjoy yourself with Cachita, I will take care of myself. I think I am going outside for some fresh air . I know my way around.”
River went outside, He walked to the garden, then went toward the big oak tree near the gate. River sat on the oak wood bench that was around the tree. Rivers mind wondered, thinking of the day that he could see again.
“Why are you not inside at the party?” A young woman said with a soft voice.
“Who is there?” River said. “I don’t believe I know you, I have never heard your voice.”
“I am nobody.” The young woman said. “I live in the village , I see you and your friend every day since the first day you came here. I also know that you are blind.”
“Why are you not at the party? River asked.
“Cachita invited me” The young girl said. “But I do not have the proper clothing to wear. I also have another problem and cannot go.”
“Your voice sounds so sweet.” River said. “Will you stay with me, we can talk for a little while. What is that perfume you are wearing? It smell so delicate and nice, What is your name?”
“Yes, I will stay.” The young girl said. “But only for a little bit, before my parents miss me. The scent you are smelling is a cologne I make, with different kind of flowers. What name would you like to call me?”
“I will call you Ylang.” River said. “Can you describe yourself to me?”
Footsteps were heard, it was Paulie and Cachita. “
“There he is.” Paulie said. “River, we have been looking for you. Cachita’s friend have arrived and want to meet you.”
“ I was talking with this girl here with me,” River said
“What girl?” Paulie asked. “I see no one else here with you. Come on, let’s go inside.”
River could not understand why the girl he named Ylang disappeared, he knew she was for real, and also hoped he would hear from her again. They all went back to the house and Cachita introduced River to her friends. Pamela one of Cachita’s friend asked River to dance with her. “I do not dance much, so if I step on your toes, my apologies.” River said.
River dance and tried to enjoy the night but he could not stop thinking about Ylang. Jon, one of Cachita’s friend, was not too happy with River. He felt that the girls were too friendly with River.
“What is it with you girls?” Jon asked Pamela. “He is a blind guy, he can’ see, everyone is making a big fuss because heis blind.”
Pamela looked at Jon and said. “Jon, please don’t tell me that you are jealous of River. We have to be polite, Cachita is our friend. River may be blind, but he is very handsome and sweet.”
The party ended, and everyone went home.
The following evening River went to the tree where he met Ylang, sat down on the bench, and waited to see if Ylang would return to talk with him. A while passed and River thought Ylang forgot about him and would not show up, when he got up, to go back to the house, he heard Ylang’s voice say, “Hello River, I am glad to see u again. I was going to come sooner, but I had to finish my chores at home. I did not know if you were going to be here either.”
River smiled, and said. “I thought your had forgotten about me, you left so unexpectedly. I am glad you came back. Let’s sit down and talk. Why did you leave without saying good bye?”
“I am sorry River.” Ylang replied. “I had to leave, it was late, besides I was not properly dressed to meet other people.”
River and Ylang met every night, they enjoyed each others company.
“The doctor called Drone today.” River said, “I have an appointment tomorrow to hear the results of the eye tests. I am very nervous. I will let you know the results when I return.”
“Don’t be nervous River.” Ylang said. “ I am sure the results will not be bad. Have faith, the doctor will help you get your eyesight back. I will be here tomorrow night to hear what the doctor said. Good night” Ylang gave River a soft kiss on his lips and left.
River was surprised and so happy, that he ran to the house, went to his room and jumped into the bed swooning and sighing.
The following day, Drone took River to the doctor. They sat down and waited for the doctor to call River. Minutes later the receptionist told River that the doctor was going to see him. Drone and River got up and walked Into the doctor’s office. The Doctor told them to sit down and said, “River we found that a blood vessel in your eyes, is blocked, and blood circulation to the retina was significantly disrupted. When this happens, the eye typically loses vision, often suddenly. Most probably the blow in your head when you fell, caused this, and since it has been a long time, I do not know the extent of the damage I will prepare your for surgery as soon as possible.”
“Will I be able to see again?” River asked
“I cannot guarantee that at the moment,“ The doctor said. “We will have to wait until the operation is done.”
“How soon is, as soon as possible?” River asked. “Can you do it tomorrow?”
“How about two days from now?” The doctor said. “That will give me time to prepare.”
“Two days is fine.” Drone replied. “The sooner the better.”
Drone took River home and everyone was informed about the surgery.
“River, you will see again.“ Paulie said. “Have faith that all will be OK.”
Everyone ate dinner and River walked out the door.
“River, where are you going?” Paulie asked. “You disappear mysteriously every evening, and when you come back, you go straight to your room.”
“I am going to talk with my friend under the tree, near the gate entrance.” River replied. “She is very nice and we like to talk to each other.”
“A friend? You have a female friend?” Paulie asked. “How come I have never seen her? Do we know her?”
“Yes, I have a female friend.” River replied. “I met her on the night of the party. She says she is Cachita’s friend. Cachita had invited her to the party, but she could not attend, ask Cachita.”
“Does your friend have a name?” Paulie asked. “I will ask Cachita.”
“I call her Ylang.” River replied. “ I got to go now Paulie, I will see you later.”
River left and Paulie went to find Cachita.
Ylang was waiting for River sitting on the bench under the tree. “Well what did the doctor say?” Ylang asked. “Will you see again?”
Revier repied. “The doctor said something about a blood clot of some kind, and he will be operating on me in two days. We will not know if I will see again until after the surgery. It seems it has been a long time since I fell, and the doctor does not know how much damage there is. Oh well, I have been blind this long, a couple of days more won’t matter. I also have to accept the fact, that if the operation does not help I will never see again.”
“Don’t give up River.” Ylang said. “You are strong and will see again. If not, I will always be with you.”
“Will you go back with me, to my home, Ylang?” River asked. “I know we do not know each well, but I think I am falling in love with you. You don’t have to answer right now, you can make your mind up after the operation. I am sorry if I am making you feel uncomfortable. Maybe you do not want to live with a blind man.”
“Shhh! River.” Ylang interrupted. “Let’s take it a day at a time. I said I will not leave you, but I do not know if I can go anywhere right now. Just concentrate on having the surgery done.”
“River are you there?” Paulie interrupted. “Cachita is with me what did you say your friend’s name is?”
“I call her Ylang.” River replied, “She is here next to me..” Turning to talk to Ylang, River said. “You know, you have not given me your real name Ylang.”
“Who are you talking to River?” Cachita asked. “There is no one else here.”
Once again Ylang disappeared.
“I am talking to my friend Ylang.” River said. “She was here a moment ago. We talk with each other every night. I wonder why she leaves every time someone comes.”
“Maybe the girl is shy and does not want to meet us yet.” Cachita said. “I have to tell you, River, I do not have any friend with the name Ylang.”
“I will ask Ylang why she does not want to meet you.” River said.
“Mysterious girl.” Paulie said.
“Come on, let’s go inside the house.” River said.
The following day, Ylang did not show up to talk with River. “Maybe Ylang got scared when I asked her to go home with me.” River said to himself. “Or maybe she is scared that I will not see again. Whatever her reason is, I will wait to find out after the operation.
The day of the surgery arrived, and Andric drove Drone and River to the hospital. Paulie and Cachita went with them. River was very scared.
River was taken to his room, and the nurses prepared him for the surgery.
Will the operation be a success? Will River see again?
Stay tuned for Chapter 8