Danny at this point looked over to Miriam to study the effect of his words before going further on his revelations.
“Go on Danny!”
“People gossiped since the first day she was at San Carlos. They saw your mother dating her boss from the first week she started working at the university. A scandal that hardly was kept undercover, he was married with a family. He had two grown-up children of your mother’s age. Her boss’ name was Julio Rodriguez, a third-generation Spaniard”
“He had become infatuated with her and gossip was that he was in love with your mother, but to what a risk. He openly flirted with her, jeopardizing his career and his own family.”
Danny kept on,
“I was working in the same department as your mother, so I had to speak to her several times. She was really gorgeous and aware of the way men’s desire was raised between the males working with her. She took the pleasure of flirting with them and receiving many invitations that kept her busy at the weekends, moving from party to party. On those occasions, she ended successfully in bed with several of those lovers, and naturally, her prodigality was divulgated on the Mondays increasing the gossiping around the campus, and the beauty of the thing was that the same males to have been your mother’s lovers for the occasion, talked openly of her easiness to move from lover to lover.”
“She was witty and friendly and the influential people in town loved her soon. It became fashionable to invite her to their parties. Your mother’s enthusiasm in life, her spontaneity and friendliness made her welcomed by many.”
“It became a ritual to have her at the university’s Friday meetings, and from there, they moved to the nearest cabaret till the early hours. They were spending time in witty talks, in good company with the bikini hostesses, employed to entertain the patrons of the place.”
“Mr. Rodriguez was always present at these parties. The regular university meeting was a good excuse for him to stay away the night from the family. His wife knew all about his love affair. She was furious to be excluded from the husband’s life but she was incapable to stop him, not wanting to be the one to create the scandal discrediting him and the possible loss of his high position at the university.”
“Tell me, how did you come in possession of all this information?”
Danny’s story so far was quite astonishing. It presented quite a different mother than I thought I had. These facts were like icy blades penetrating my heart, a blow to her memory, and to my love for her. Mother was coming back from dead haunting me with such a story.
“It happened accidentally. One Friday night I was doing some urgent work and I stay later in the office. I was ready to go when I heard people coming.
“I immediately recognized it was your mother and Mr. Rodriguez. I thought it better to hide in the next room and give them privacy. Mr. Rodriguez took a bottle of Bourbon from his cabinet and filled two glasses.
“Your mother was apparently upset and raised her voice and complained about him about some intimidating phone calls she had received earlier from her lover’s wife. Both, your mother and Rodriguez were high on the booze, therefore the altercation finished in a fight.”
I begged Danny with my eyes to continue.
“Mr. Rodriguez was telling your mother, ’I’m crazy of you Kathy. I can’t stay without having you because you are the only one to know how to return to me those special loving effusions that normally wives are denying to their own husbands. But you are ungrateful in my regards, you are forgetting how much cost me to return your love. I’m risking so much. Keeping on in this way soon I’ll destroy what I’d built in many years of hard work. Don’t you know that soon, in the way I’m doing, my brilliant career will be over as well I’ll lose the comfort of my family? Did you really want to ruin me completely?’ He asked bluntly.”
“The argument between them went on for a long time and their repressed bitterness surfaced many times and made them exchange strong words. It was the beginning of the end of their relationship and such a final argument clearly split them apart and from that night they moved in different directions.
“Mr. Rodriguez returned to his old habits. He flirted with the many girls he met in the nightclubs. Your mother showed to be a bad loser in that game, incapable to accept that split. She kept going at those cabarets he went and took pleasure to increase his jealousy in rivaling him changing as many possible partners as she could during the night.
“Most likely they met at the wrong time and certainly they were victims of fate.”
After a short pause, Danny added:
“I’m not sure how deep the antagonism between them was, Miriam. The hate was perhaps was caused by the love that was still there for each other.
“But I’m sure of one thing. With what I said I’d destroyed your mother’s myth, the one that your love for her had created over many years. I know that what I told you is a reason for grief to you. ”
“Yes, I had created quite a different image of my mother. How could I possibly see her now as the nymphomaniac person you put in front of me? True, Danny, in a short time you wiped away the best dreams and memories I had of my mother. How can you expect me to cope with all this?”
Danny looked apologetic but kept on
“I don’t have any answers to your mother’s tragedy or how it happened. Pity, if I could only have your father’s diary most likely I would find the final answer there. But Mother had destroyed his possessions.”
“Do you really think so, Danny? His diary was the only thing I could salvage from Grandma. But I couldn’t read it. It’s written in Tagalog. I’ve hidden it in grandpa’s garden shed, the only secure place around the house I could find.”
“Thanks, Miriam, Next time I’m going home I‘ll get it. In Cebu, you can have use of your father’s flat. From there we’ll plan the next move.”
End part 4