Monday, July 26, 2010


I am the Secret-Keeper

James and Lily’s safehouse is discovered when their friend and Secret-Keeper, Peter Pettigrew, betrayed them to Voldemort. In the Wizarding world, as in the Muggles’, a secret must be cautiously shared.

Skeeter examines the palm on my dominant right hand and correctly infers that I am basically on my first job, and that I am supposedly satisfied with and accomplished in it, then she predicts something that I find rather unlikely – that I will eventually shift to a completely unrelated career, and that I will be happier and probably richer there. This secret of the future, though taken lightly, intrigues me.

The night after, the “white secret” that my right ear is practically deaf is casually revealed to relatively newer dragonboat teammates. Trixie, like most people who discovers this for the first time, tests me by whispering to my right ear. I, of course, could only shake my head and put on a confused look. Encouraged, she became bolder with the things she whispers and started mouthing secrets. To her delight, I literally turned a deaf ear to everything she said. Perhaps it was the exhilarating relief when one unburdens a heart heavy with secret, or the freedom from fear of being judged outwardly or secretly that convinced Alyx, Yves, Tessa, and Chino to whisper to me their secrets, too. I have become the muggle Secret-Keeper.

By then we have resolved the dilemma on whether the Secret-Keeper should further indulge the Secret-Whisperer by reacting to the secret in the way the whisperer prefers. My initial apprehension with the idea because it might negate the exercise being founded on truth was erased when the whisperers told me that getting the desired reaction helps. When Tessa finally got over her initial fears that I am just feigning disability to extract their juiciest secrets, she asked me to tell her “Ang tanga-tanga mo” after she spills it out. I practiced infront of her to make sure I nail the tone and emotion that comes with me saying those words, and when she was satisfied, she tiptoed, and with her hands formed a tunnel from her mouth to my ear, and sent her secret directly to my right ear’s dead nerve-endings. Once done, I looked straight into her eyes and gathered what little thespic talents I have to come off wisely disagreeing while being helplessly supportive to something obviously big for her but totally unknown to me. “Ang tanga-tanga mo.” She practically throws her arms around me, and we hug tightly for a little while.

They ordered sympathy, disbelief, shock, encouragement. I never knew “OK lang ‘yan,” and “Weh!?” can be said in so many ways. Bryan says he has no secret worth whispering. Wish I were him. Laurie wanted to whisper something but couldn’t get over her doubts and fears, so I stopped her because the exercise might not be as liberating for her until she does. Klar opened my eyes to another aspect of this newfound ability, “I’ll whisper a secret about you… You’ll hear it if you’re meant to hear it,” then proceeded to whisper. I swear I never strained so hard before to catch a word but all my efforts were futile tears formed in my eyes. Klar sweetly assured me that that secret is a good thing; practicing what I encourage the whisperers to do, I let it go.

Someone whispered a tad too loudly his secret I heard it. Giving the requested reaction was more difficult than when I was just acting out on an unheard secret. The second time I reminded the whisperer to speak in a lower voice; unexpectedly hearing secrets, apparently, aren’t gonna be easy for me.

How I can make a rewarding career of Secret-Keeping baffles me, but if you’ve got a secret you just need to get off your chest without fear of judgment, you can try telling me, I guess. If that helps.

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