The Whispers of Angiw-Angiw

 This is the seventh chapter of the historical fantasy entitled "Rhapsody of Nature."

Synopsis: The blowing winds from the ocean enforce the will of the tribal gods...



Esteban... Esteban...

Somebody was calling the young conquistador but, as he was still staring at the vanishing figure of Kalila, he didn't notice the echoes.


Esteban... Esteban...

A gentle breeze began to pick up wind, causing the falling leaves to touch different parts of Esteban's body but the young man was too focused on Kalila to realize another thing was happening within his midst.


Esteban... Esteban...

A twig broke off of a tree branch. It blew toward Esteban and poked his left shoulder. This got his attention.

"I hear the voice of a lady," he said, "but where is she?"


It is me... A new friend...


"Is someone calling me?"


Yes... But you will not see me...


"What do you mean? Are you hiding?"


No... I am here... Within your midst...


"It would be very nice if you tell me why I can't see you," Esteban was getting wary of the voice of what to him was a secretive person...


I am invisible... I am the wind...


Esteban shook his head in disbelief. Yet another strange encounter.

"Well, this is indeed a strange land."


Yes, it is... You are now essentially standing on the easternmost island of the entire world... across the vast expanse of a large ocean...


"I've been here for days but I still don't know this island's name. I suppose you would tell me?"


The natives call this Katanduan... But the people of Spain have named it Catanduanes... Because of the island's strong winds, it has earned the moniker Land of the Howling Winds...


"Thanks. I am curious, what name does Your Ladyship go by?"


There is no necessity for formalities... Please call me Angiw-Angiw... I am one of the four winds of Catanduanes...


"Hmmmm... you are one of the four winds. Would you tell me who the other three are?"


Yes... They are Surangak, Alungu-ug, and Salinggaya...


"Interesting. I suppose, you are different from the others..."


You are right... I am the whispering wind... I reveal secrets to people, and I remind them of their conscience...


"That seems to be the reason why you were the one who came up to me," Esteban giggles. "For as long as I have been on this island," he said, "my conscience has been piqued. Has that been you, Angiw-Angiw?"


Yes... And as I reveal secrets, it is but proper for me to divulge who the other three winds are... And their special purposes...



"It might be nice to go over them one by one. I'm most interested with Surangak..."


Surangak is the tempest... Often angry but actually misunderstood... She brings heavy rains and is the strongest among us four... But her main purpose, actually, is to clean rivers, lakes and seas... 

She loves the environment... So she protects the island's beloved but vulnerable plant and animal species by scaring away unwanted invaders and opportunists...


Esteban loves nature, and so he finds his conversation with Angiw-Angiw very, very compelling.

"Well, that's fascinating. I would love to know more. How about Alungu-ug?"


Alungu-ug is Surangak's twin sister... 

She protects people from harm by making sudden, unexpected but necessary mishaps... in order to prevent greater accidents... 

As Surangak's twin sister, she helps her protect the environment... She is the howling wind, the most common in this island...


As the two winds scared Esteban a bit, he was made to gobble up a little. He then utters, "Hmmm... I hope Salinggaya is a lot gentler..."


Yes... Salinggaya is the gentlest... She is, after all, the lullaby... 

Salinggaya means peace and happiness... The tribal gods gave her that name as her purpose is to calm and appease troubled minds through her gentle touches... 

When people say that time heals all wounds... it is actually Salinggaya who does the work. If you need to fall asleep after a difficult day and the tribal gods think that you deserve it, they will send Salinggaya your way...


"Amazing. I hope Salinggaya will always be with me."


Do not worry... Ever since you came here, she has always been with you... for us four winds have seen something special in you...


"Something special? But I am just a young, inexperienced explorer visiting a foreign land," Esteban confessed.


I am speaking to you because you have a special purpose in this island... We have seen your love for nature and exploration... You are a pure soul and you see the world with the eyes and wonder of a child... Because of these, the tribal gods believe that you will save this island... 

You were lost because they willed it... And, as we are the ones who enforce their sacrosanct will, we carried you off away from your friends...


Esteban felt a little embarrassed about his strong feelings for Kalila but something else was more important for his next inquiry. "You mean, you are not gods?"


No... We are not... We only enforce the will of the tribal gods...


"Who are they?"


They are many... But the one you will find most amusing is Korakog...


"I suppose this is not the time yet to tell me all their names but you mentioned Korakog. Hmmm... I believe you are ready to tell me who he is?"


I would certainly tell you some day but now is not the time. I only mentioned his name because he makes me giggle...


"Well, that's funny. I thought you are sacred and would never laugh."


Oh... I love humor too... And humor is often the result of saying something true, which is what I am all about...


"I really like your voice. It's so relaxing. I hope you could tell me why Korakog is funny though..."


Some things are better said when you see them. Korakog has a special islet that will certainly make you laugh... I cannot tell you why unless you see that very islet in person...


"I guess that'd be a surprise, then."

Esteban understood that he would not be able to comprehend why it is funny unless he sees the islet Angiw-Angiw is telling him.

"You mentioned that you are the wind that reveals secrets to people. Can you tell me how and why I was lost?"


Sure.


To be continued...


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