THE GOD STEALER
Francisco Sionil José
They were the best of friends and that was feasible because they worked inside the same workplace and equally were aged imbued which has a freshness in outlook. Sam Christie was twenty – eight great Filipino helper, Philip Latak, was 20 or so – 6 and was – in the same way Sam had been at the Company before this individual assumed his post – intelligent and industrious. " That is being expected, ” the official whom Sam replaced explained " because Philip is Ifugao and you can't say for sure patience right up until you have seen the grain terraces his ancestors built. ”
" You will find, ” Sam Christie was likewise told, " that the Igorots, like the Ilocanos, no matter how urbanized they are already, entertain a sense of inferiority. Not really Philip. He could be proud of his being Ifugao. He covers it the first opportunity he gets. ” Now, on this 12 , dawn, Mike Christie was on his method to Ifugao with his local assistant. It was last month inside the Philippines and in a matter of days he'd return to Boston for that leave which he previously not had in years. The bus station was really a filter sidestreet which in turn sloped to a deserted plaza, among the many in the summer capital. Sam will certainly make out the shapes of the natural stone buildings huddled, it looked, in the frosty, their filter windows shuttered and the casings advertising Cocaina – Soda above their doorways indistinct in the dark. Philip Latak appeared listless. They had been in the station for over half an hour but still there was simply no bus. He zipped his old soft jacket approximately his the neck and throat. It had been several years that he had occupied Manila and during all these years he had hardly ever gone house. Now, the cold from the pine – clad mountains seemed to take the time him. This individual turned to Mike and, having a hint of urgency – " 1 favour, Sam. Let me require a swig. ”
Sam and Christie said, " Sure, you are welcome to it. Just make sure we have some kept when we obtain Ifugao. ” He ceased, brought out a bottle of White Labeled – one of the four – in the handbag which as well contained pubs of sweets and carte of cigarettes and matches for the residents. He eliminated the tinfoil and handed the bottle to his companion. Phil raised that to his lips and made happy gurgling sounds. " Rice wine – I really hope there's nonetheless a container around whenever we get to my personal grandfather's. This individual couldn't always be as significantly sick as my brother composed. As long as this individual has wine beverage he will live. Hell, is actually not as powerful as this kind of, but it can easily knock out a male, too. ”
Sam Christie kidded his companion about the weather. That they had arrived in the summertime capital the previous day and the bracing surroundings and the fragrance of pine had invigorated him. " It's like New England in the spring, ” he explained. " In winter, when it genuinely gets cold, I can still go around quite naked because of your standards. My spouse and i sent home a clipping this week, a thing in the Manila papers regarding it being frosty. And it had been only sixty-eight! My old fart will get a kick out of this. ” " But really really frosty! ” Philip Latak explained ruefully. This individual handed the bottle returning to Sam Christie, who had taken a drink, too. " You don't recognize how good it is to have that along. Do you know how much that costs nowadays? Twenty – four bucks. ” " It's less expensive at the commissary, ” Sam Christie explained simply. This individual threw his chest out, flexed his lean arms and inhaled. He put on a white, dacron shirt with the sleeves rolled up.
" I am just glad you didn't discover those designs in Manila, ” Phil cannella said after a while. A Grecian urn, a Japanese people sword, a Siamese mask – and after this, an Ifugao God. The Siamese face mask, ” Mike spoke within a monotone, " it was a real bargain. A student was going to Boston. He necessary the us dollars, so I advised him he could get the bucks from my father. Forty dollars – and the mask was well worth more than that. ”
Now, the grey buildings around them emerged from your dark with white, certain shapes. The east was starting to shine and more people had arrived with closets full and battered rattan luggage. In the cool most of them had been quiet. A coffee shop opened up along the street with a lot of clatter in addition to its nice, golden mild...