Title: I Will Be The One
Author: Larry Farmer
Genre: Adventure, Travel, Romance
There is political turmoil in The Philippines during the last years of the Marcos regime in the mid-1980s. And America is embroiled in Cold War intrigue as a part of it. A Marine veteran is restless. He joined to serve before and still needs fulfillment. He joins the Peace Corps. Little did he know what lay in store with his assignment to The Philippines as a volunteer. And little did he know the life he would share with his new friend Lois in the process.
“Remember that time we rode the jeepney together going to Midsayap?” Lois reminisced. “Where I tried to ride the bumper with you?”
“They wouldn’t let you,” I reminisced with her. “You’re a woman. Women tire more easily, but also, women fall off more easily. Or if there’s an accident or ambush, no one wants to see a woman suffer.”
“Exactly,” Lois said. “Survival of the fittest includes gallantry of the strong to protect the weak. Remember what that man said to me to get me to go inside? He tapped me on the shoulder. That’s what they do. They tap on the shoulder and say, I will be the one. I will be the one to take the hardship and danger. That is so beautiful, so touching.”
She turned fully on her side as if to look at me, even though we were in total darkness.
“When we get married someday, Mississippi, that’s going to be our wedding vow. Before you kiss the bride to seal our marriage, we’re going to face each other, look each other in the eyes, hold both of our hands, and say to each other --”
She placed her hand on my cheek for emphasis. “Let’s say it now. I want to vow it right now. Let’s do it.”
“I will be the one,” we said to one another.
“Whenever one of us is weak,” she continued, “the other will be there. We will always be there for each other. We will always survive.”
We sealed our vow with a kiss.
Somewhere during the night we heard gunfire. I heard it in my sleep but didn’t understand it at first. Then I jerked and sat up. Lois gently pulled at me to lie back down. Was this why they called this region the Wild West?
“It happens,” she said. “Is this the first time it has while you’ve been here?”
“This happens?” I asked, aghast.
“I told you that,” she said. “I told you about the gunfire at night sometimes.”
“No, you didn’t. You never told me you hear gunfire.”
“When it happens, it’s at night,” she explained. “Somewhere after midnight.”
“You’ve got to be kidding.”
“Maybe I was afraid you’d act like this,” she said. “It’s nothing to get excited about. They’re in another village. Nothing we can do about it. They’re hamletting.”
“What are you talking about?” I asked, showing my frustration and anger. I was scared to death for her, just hearing the gunfire. Now I’m hearing there’s a creepy story about the gunfire. A common story somehow.
“The elite military forces sometimes conduct searches in a wide circle. Like documentaries I’ve seen about Polynesia or somewhere, where the village forms a wide circle and beats on the water to scare the fish in. Then when the fish are close together and convenient for the villagers, they close in on them with their nets. Some of the farmers here do that in the rice paddies to kill the rats. But here, the elites close in on a village, then a hamlet. They go under and around a Nipa Hut so no one can escape. Then everyone is killed. Everyone. Old and young alike, male and female. Since I’ve been here, it’s never happened to this village. I suppose it’s used on suspected NPA, but I don’t know all who it happens to. Perhaps even political opponents, for all I know. And the NPA does it to a village or family that cooperates with authorities. I try to center myself and hold myself open for those tragic, lost people. In some way I want to be a channel to heaven for them. Maybe, while their soul escapes from this horror, somehow I can help ease them into a channel to heaven. That’s all I know to do. The last thing they know in their lives is the horror of a late-night execution and death on all sides.”
I was so moved by her thoughts and feelings. This was the purest woman I’d ever met. All she seemed to know in her life was to be there for people. Even for people miles away in the middle of the night, people she couldn’t help in any other way except to exude her essence for them. I wanted to believe it helped.
“I timed it last time, and it went on for twenty-five minutes,” she explained.
I was horrified for her now. I could see why she hadn’t told me about this. I didn’t know if I could sleep anymore in my safe little room at my Lola’s in Cotabato City. She had been protecting me this whole time by not telling me. Letting me have peace for her being. I wasn’t allowed until now to share this about her, to add it to my fears while I was at my safe abode.
The Wild Rose Press - https://www.thewildrosepress.com/books/i-will-be-the-one
Amazon and Kindle - https://www.amazon.com/Will-Be-One-Larry-Farmer-ebook/dp/B00R9YXZFM
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What’s your favorite part about being a romance author?
I enjoy communication. Conveying. But in particular, writing is an art form. To get the message, including the settings and scenes across seductively and informatively.
Here’s my tip to add romance to your love life:
Love is sharing and caring. Needing and fulfillment.
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I was born and raised in Harlingen on the border with Mexico on the southern tip of Texas, near the Gulf of Mexico. I was raised with old school values on a cotton farm. After high school I went to Texas A&M and was in the Corps of Cadets there. I quit in the middle of my senior year to join the Marines in the hope of going to Vietnam. I also served in the Peace Corps in The Philippines. I travelled around the world between these two events in my life and saw enough to need to relate it.
I worked for eleven years in Switzerland. I married there and raised two of my three children there. I now work for Texas A&M. And finally have time to reflect on my life and its meaning. And write about it.
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