Journey into Disaster • Chapter 10.02 online • Ernesto •

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Journey into Disaster

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10.02. Ernesto

Ernesto is Thomas Heger’s friend. The German was arrested in the Philippines and accused of bad things. Ernesto, one of the fathers of the boys involved, has a very difficult conversation with the head of the Youth Welfare Office (BSWD) in his city.

Excerpt:

….
Ernesto Restito, he is Rica’s husband and Sam’s father, enters the BSWD in Sendong City at exactly eight o’clock in the morning. He has an appointment with his cousin, the head-off of the local BSWD Ronald Pagut, whom everyone just calls Ron. Ernesto would have liked to have Matthew, Lang’s husband and the father of the brothers Jan and Dan, with him, but unfortunately he is indispensable on a construction site. Ernesto has a bad feeling when he knocks on the door of the office. There is only one question on his mind: When are the children coming home?

“Thank you for coming so quickly, Ernesto,“ Ronald Pagut, the gaunt mid-fifties, opens the conversation while Ernesto sits down at his desk across from him.”

Since they are related, both men speak in clear tone: Ernesto says: “The Heger story is a stupid matter, Ron.”

“Oh, I agree, a stupid story. I heard you visited this German in Tugalm City?”

“We, all parents, Kagawad Jacub Castro and some other friends, went to Tugalm City immediately after being informed by phone calls and then seeing the story on the news. I tell you, Ron, we are really shocked! Heger arrested, our sons in the BSWD!”

“Yes, Ernesto, everyone would be. All parents would be shocked if they were drawn into such an unspeakable story.“ He leans forward and clears his throat. In a pressed voice he says: “Everyone in Tugalm City is wondering, and of course we are also wondering here in our city, how it can be that five of our children are half-naked and in the middle of the night from a hotel room in a strange city in front of a German need to be rescued?”

Ernesto swallows, because what he heard is like a slap into his face.

But his relative makes it much worse: “And the next question that remains unanswered is: How do the parents fit into the story?”

“Well, on previous trips, Heger is always back with the children on the same day,” stammers Ernesto. “I, I don’t know why they wanted to sleep in the hotel? Heger has explained because of the many construction sites which cause the longer traveling time. He didn’t want to return to Sendong City in the middle of the night. No Motorela into the village, power failure, lonely, dangerously bus terminal. Anybody knows that we should not be late at night on the streets of our city.

“Then they have to go back earlier! Now we have a mess. From Tugalm I have heard from the BSWD that a Nongovernmental Organization is already behind the case. Then the public, newspapers and television. Oh yeah, that damn TV report! That is also very strange!” Now Pagut sounds reproachful, and he wipes the sweat from his face: “Did you see the second report on the news, Ern?”

“No!” groans Ernesto. The conversation is extremely uncomfortable for him. He does not really know what his relative actually wants.
….

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Journey into Disaster • Chapter 10.01 online • New week, new day •

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10.01. New week, new day

Thomas Heger (Tommy) was arrested in the Philippines and has an interesting conversation with a police officer.

Excerpt:

….
Only fifteen minutes later a young officer arrives and unlocks the cell door: “The officer is waiting for you in his office, but first you should visit the bathroom. You have an appointment today!”

“What appointment, sir?”

“The officer will brief you.”

-★-

I hurry in the bathroom. Why the officer does not just say what the appointment is about and why always does so much mysterious?

To my joy, Mik sits in the office and grins wide when I enter the room. A cup of hot water, instant coffee and the usual pastries are already ready. Even before I can ask Officer Sarang, it bursts out of Mik: “Tommy, today at ten o’clock at the prosecutor. Rica has sent me a text message.”

Officer Sarang takes a seat: “The prosecutor has sent us a subpoena for you on Saturday!” He becomes restless: “On Saturday they work really seldom in the Hall of Justice.” That is already strange. He sips the steaming coffee and continues: “I think he got pressure from anybody. We will see.”

I get a queasy feeling in my stomach area: “Are the children also ordered to come and what about the parents? My Attorney! Sir Sarang, my Attorney must come there too. He doesn’t know. The subpoena is now very surprising.”

<p
“I’m not able to get your cell phone. But maybe your friend can call the Attorney?”</p
Immediately I take De Baron’s business card out of my wallet: “Mik, call the Attorney or send him a message. Because of my Affidavit, he wanted to visit me today also.“ I turned to the officer: „Sir, Ma’am Papillio will be present?”

“Sure!” Officer Sarang replies.

My left hand hurts slightly and looks not good, although I cleaned the wound — who left the handcuff — in the candlelight this early morning. “Sir, this should see a doctor. The back of the hand is ignited and even hurts a little.”

“I already noticed that. About eight o’clock the Ma’ams will appear here, then show that to her.”

We drink hot coffee, and I eat two bread rolls. Mik is faster back than I expected. I smell the cigarette smoke, and he is out of breath: “Cell phone Attorney is off. I sent a text, he should be at ten o’clock in the Hall of Justice.”

“Thank you!” I turn to the officer and ask cautiously: “Sir, what the prosecutor wants to know?”

“Well, he will first ask the children, to find out, if there is something, which would justify a trial against you.”

I choke myself on hot coffee and cough. This directness is new to me. I ask him directly back: “What are you thinking, sir, is the evidence enough for an indictment?”

Mik is quite excited and answers before the officer can do: “Never, Tommy, that’s a misunderstanding! I hope — we all pray for it — that the case will be dismissed in the prosecutor’s office.”

….

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Journey into Disaster • Chapter 10.00. online • All alone •

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10.00. All alone

What are the news in the Youth Home?

Excerpt:

….
Dan wakes up from the hustle and bustle, which prevails in the hallway in front of the dormitory. It must be around six o’clock, because the horizontal slats of milk glass slices shine bright. The door opens, Ma’am Burque looks into the room, says “That’s not true!” and disappear.

“Jan, get up! Dodung, Bernie, Neko and the brothers are not here,” whispers Dan from the upper bunk bed and adds sadly: “All are gone! We are all alone now.” He climbs down to the brother. Jan wakes up abruptly, sits on the edge of the bed, rubs his eyes and looks at the empty beds in disbelief. Dan nestles to the brother and says sadly: “Jan, now we are all alone. No mom, no dad and no friends — nobody is with us anymore!”

Jan strokes Dan’s black hair: “Mom and aunt Rica come later, we are not alone. We are five friends here. Make the others awake.”

Dan sighs, shakes off the sadness and does as he is told. Phil, Aboy and Sam sit down next to the brothers, tired and drowsy, and look in disbelief at the empty beds.

“They really did it, I thought Dodung was crazy and having fun when he talked about running away,” whispers Phil.

Sam is deeply impressed, yawns and says: “Great!”

But Aboy is furious: “Fools! They let us here in the fucking Youth Home with this strange people alone. Great friends! I would have run away too, but you didn’t want to because you had shit in your pants!”

“It doesn’t matter now. They’re gone!” Jan tries to calm him down.

….

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Journey into Disaster • Chapter 9.04. online • Forced marriage •

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9.04. Forced marriage

The German Thomas Heger, arrested in the Philippines, kill with his friend Mik time with memories and tell stories experienced together.

Excerpt:

….

Mik and I kill time with memories and tell stories experienced together. We are laughing about Romolo’s last mug of Rum in the Garden of Adon, Franco’s father. Romolo was drunk and falling backwards into his plastic chair in the sand and slept in this position immediately without saying any word. We saw only his feet with the flip-flops. Fortunately, he hadn’t hurt himself.

I laugh loud: “Oh my God, we were really drunk.”

My friend smiles and smokes his cigarette.

“I was two days sick!” It shakes me in the memories of the headache. “Coke, Tanduay Rum and ice are a hellish poison.”

Mik makes a grimace and it shakes him as well. “Hangover!”

“I will always have fond memories of your wedding celebration. How long was that now, eleven or twelve years?”

“I’ve been married for twelve years,” sighs Mik, “as long as Phil is old. Well, he’s only turning twelve.”

“How quickly time goes by. Well, in any case, I wasn’t really well for a few days after the party.”

He grins broadly: “Do you know that they forced me to marry?”

“No!” I answer. “Who and why?”

“Well, Vicente was only 16 and I was over 25.”

“Oh, 16 and 25? That’s pretty young!”

Adon, Romolo, some other uncles and relatives of Vicente, the Kagawad and other people looked for me everywhere. They wanted to beat me up and do something to me. But I ran away from the village quickly.” Mik says seriously: “In the mountains with my friends, the communist rebels of the NPA, nobody could find me. Tommy, they had a highblood when it was discovered that Vicente was pregnant by me.”

I swallow, cough and spit out mineral water: “What, pregnant, with 16?”

He plays embarrassedly: “Yes, that’s how it was back then. My father and his cousin, a commander of the communist rebels, mediated between my family and the Taslig family.” Mik suddenly laughs out loud: “What choice did I have, with a huge gun on my chest? None! Marry, or they will file a case against me for seducing minors and then off to jail. I married Vicente.”

„But, but,“ I stammer, „You love each other, don’t you?“

“Yes, of course it was a love marriage too!”

I have to laugh at the thought of the pistol as an aid to making a decision about a forced marriage: “A pistol on your chest? That makes the right decision pretty easy, isn’t it, Mik? Did they really put a gun on your chest?”

He snorts out: “I only say that with the gun-on-chest because it’s a saying here and Vicente is really a great woman!” Unexpectedly he jumps up: “Tommy, look there, Kagawad, Franco, Marielou and Jonathan are at the barrier!”

“I know that saying gun-on-your-chest too.”

-★-

The four visitors are carrying heavy bags with Tupperware and drinks. Marielou and Kagawad notice that they heard us laughing at the barrier. I repeat in short the funny story of the drunken Romolo again. That causes laughter even now. I’d rather let the story of Mik and his Vicente rest. We don’t spend long with the greeting, but instead set up four upturned coke crates as a table as best we can. Kagawad places cardboard on top of the boxes and plastic bags serve as a tablecloth. The teenagers use the lids of the Tupperware containers as plates. The food is a mixture of freshly cooked food and leftovers from yesterday’s birthday party. The dishes are excellent. I especially like a light pork soup with lots of vegetables, in which I add rice. As usual, there are also cold soft drinks. For dessert we enjoy the rest of a simple, sugar-sweet cream cake.

….

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Journey into Disaster • Chapter 9.03. online • Sunday in the Youth Home •

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9.03. Sunday in the Youth Home

The children – alleged victims of child abuse – have been under custody of the Social Welfare Office for a week. The parents visit the Youth Home and bring their sons lunch. What do the parents experience there?

Excerpt:

….
Rica and Lang have been waiting for Vicente and Romolo for more than ten minutes at the first gate of the BSWD premises. The two mothers notice the crooked concrete block, which the BSWD emblem adorns.

Rica is surprised: “Did you see the footprints of the soles on the side?”

“Yes, someone was very angry.”

Vicente is coming. Rica and Lang are very impatient, because they want to visit their sons as soon as possible. The welcome is cold and Rica asks: “Vicente, what about Romolo and your husband?”

“Mik stayed with Tommy, so he has a visitor but doesn’t have to go back to the cell. Uncle Romolo got a text message from me that I’m on my way to the BSWD. But I didn’t get an answer. He knows that we have an appointment here.”

At that moment, a motorela stops, roaring loudly, from which Romolo with the help of Silas laboriously gets out. Rica, Lang and Vicente watch the spectacle.

Romolo brushes the dust off his half-length trousers and t-shirt and looks at the three in amazement: “Well, let’s go visit the boys. Supported by Silas, he hobbles past the mothers and goes to the second gate of the wire fence. The women follow father and son in silence.

Rica remembers the unpleasant scene a few days ago when she was turned away by the unkempt security guard after she rang the bell in the box on the fence. Her quick prayer is answered because it is not the unkempt but the young guard who appears.

A few minutes later, the four parents and Silas are sitting in the deserted canteen and waiting for their sons. Only one elderly woman is employed in the small kitchen. She washes dishes and now and then smiles at the visitors.

The door flies open, five boys sweep into the room and hug violently their parents.

Ma’am Burque follows them and says: “Well, well, you’re just pretending you haven’t seen your parents for years.”

Romolo and the mothers quickly turn away from the boys and begin to arrange the Tupperware boxes on the table. The friendly Kitchen aid gives plates, cups and cutlery. She will prepare the drink powder with water and ice to make fruit juice.

The children have only one question: “When can we finally go home?”

….

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9.02. An illegal phone call

Entire chapter

….
Vicente says goodbye, because she has an appointment with Rica, Lang and Romolo in the Youth Home. They want to visit their five sons and bring them Rica’s lunch. Mik stays as my visitor and I have not to go back to the damp cell. With his cell phone, he had unconsciously smuggled in his trouser pocket in the police station, and that is wrapped in my little cloth, I go to the right corner of the cell, where the garbage mountain was. There I am outside the observation area of the officers.

Quickly I send text messages with the same text to Marie, to my sister Sabine and my mother: “I secretly use Michael’s mobile phone. Is there something new from the Embassy? Have you reached something? I do not know about calling later. Rgds. T.”

Here it is 10:30 in the morning, 3:30 at night in Germany. Hopefully, I do not wake up my family.

But my younger sister Sabine calls back immediately: “Tommy, where are you? You secretly use the mobile phone from Michael?”

“Greetings, Tommy! How have you been the last few days?” calls a second voice. It is my niece Jessica, the daughter of my older sister Ute.

“I have to speak softly. They didn’t search Michael at the gate when they came in here. Imagine Michael and his wife Vicente staying overnight in the watchtower!”

Sabine and Jessica are obviously in a car and now use a speakerphone. Sabine is surprised: “Overnight in the watchtower?”

“Yes, at the barrier to the police station is a watchtower, which consists of concrete. Michael and his wife Vicente spent the night today and yesterday there. They didn’t want to sleep in a hotel. It would be a pity for the money, they said. I could not persuade the two. First, they have also talked about staying with relatives.”

“Uh, slept in the watchtower?” repeats Sabine.

“That’s the Philippines! Here is a lot possible. In the good as in bad sense.”

Jessica calls happily: “How are you doing, uncle? Hope you are fine and see you soon here!”

“Well, how am I supposed to be in this humble situation! I got myself into an absolutely stupid, crude story, Jessie. Where are you actually still so late at night?”

Sabine laughs: “Why late? Early!”

“We were at a techno-live concert. My ears are ringing,” shouts Jessica exuberantly. Unfortunately, it’s already over. It was great. Driving home now.”

“Well, very nice, you two pretty ones! Sabine, is there anything new?”

“No, Tommy, same situation like Friday. The Foreign Office and the Embassies are also closed for the weekend.”

“Could you send money? Did you contact Wolfgang Schmidt from Sendong City?”

“Marie takes care of financial matters. I didn’t talk to her yesterday. But we have set up a group on Facebook Messenger.”

„Well, Sabine, I have to register there, because so far I haven’t got Facebook. I hope I can use my laptop on Monday. Today on Sundays no one of the officers is on duty. I guess I cannot call today. You certainly want to sleep in the morning. In Germany it is the deepest night now and before you go to bed, it will probably be five o’clock. The parents and some friends from the village have already made testimonies for me on Friday at the Attorney. Sabine, it’s better to end the call now. Not that the officers catch me with an illegal phone. Then the special treatment would probably end immediately.”

Suddenly, Mik is in the cell door: “Tommy, more visitors are coming!” He keeps the raised index finger on his lips.

I whisper: “I have to end the call. More visitors to the other inmates are coming. Best regards to Jessie and all at home. Goodbye!” I hear the two young ladies saying “Good bye, Tommy!” I turn off the phone, wrap it in my towel and give it back to Mik. He puts it into his pocket and gives me my towel back.

The Officer appears with visitors at the gate of the fence, and Mik is doing as if he is inspecting the diligence bed.

We go back to the chairs in front of the cell.

“Hopefully Kagawad appears soon. Maybe Marielou, Silas and Jonathan with delicious food from Rica too? Slowly I get hungry. You said, you’re staying this week? That’s good, because without you I’m completely helpless here.”

Mik looks at me surprised. It seems his helpfulness and stand-on-my-side are so very self-evident and usual of him like the smoking of cigarettes. He holds the box promptly and with a wide grin under my nose. I have no choice, grab one, inhale deeply, cough with thick cheeks and laugh about the absurd situation. Mik looks first surprised but then laughs with me.
….

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Journey into Disaster • Chapter 9.01. online • Boys conversation •

Chapter 9.01. online • Excerpt and preview • The novel as book and ebook will be published soon.

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Journey into Disaster

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9.01. Boys conversation

Some believe that the five Filipino boys from a small village became victims of sexual violence. The children are under custody of the Youth Welfare BSWD and talking to street boys and two other brothers.

Excerpt:

….
The five friends from the village, the three street boys and the two brothers from the broken family have completed with some smaller children and educators the Sunday morning worship. This was held in a multi-purpose room of the Youth Home. The ten boys had the task to prepare the room: sweeping, wiping the dust away and arranging chairs. Decorating a table as an altar with a white tablecloth, a wooden cross, bible and two thin candles. A standing ventilator for the free time Pastor Sir Sala was also not missing. After the one-hour worship, they are just on the beds in the sleeping room.

“Thank God, Ma’am Solano isn’t here today. She is weird,” Sam opens the conversation.

“Weird?” says Aboy, “She’s really stupid!”

“I hate that she took our cell phones from us. I would like to play a game now. I’m bored,” sighs Jan.

“They cannot do that! Just got something away from us!” Phil says indignantly, “I want to call mom and dad.”

Phil’s friends nod.

“Ha!” replies Dodung, the oldest of the three street boys, “The BSWD can do anything.”

“We’re arrested, but haven’t done anything,” whispers Dan, Jan’s little brother, sadly.

The lanky 13-year-old Dodung answers: “I’ve said it before, you’re not arrested. That means “under custody.” When the story is over, you go back to mom and dad faster than you can think.”

Bernie and Neko, Dodung’s buddies, repeat with a big grin at the same time: “Back to mom and dad!”

“But Ma’am Solano said, when we do not tell the truth, we will stay in the BSWD until we are eighteen years old!” says Aboy and adds: “But not me — never! I’ll not stay in this weird Youth Home. We cannot do anything here. I want to go roaming around, swimming, riding my bike, playing basketball and go fishing. And my dad needs me! Because he has a Adrises.”

Dodung corrects: “You mean Arthritis?”

“Yes, Arthrises, Adrises, it’s all the same, you know?”

Dodung laughs loud: “Arthritis, Arthisis, Adrises,
Aboy has a big crisis.”

All boys laugh, just Aboy not. He plays for a moment with his two milk teeth — which the dentist has removed — but then laughs too.

Dodung comes back to Aboy’s topic: “The BSWD lies! Believe me! They will throw you immediately out of here when the story is over. The faster Tommy goes out of prison, the faster you go home. So, helping Tommy! By the way, the BSWD has barely enough money — to feed spoiled kids like you are — until you have become eighteen years old.”

Neko naughtily repeats: “To feed spoiled kids.”

“But we are not spoiled at all,” answers Dan with childish honesty.

“Ha! If you eat such delicious food every day as last week, then you are spoiled!” laughs Dodung. Bernie and Neko nodding and twitching their eyebrows.

“And your food is always so tasty,” Kyle turns into the conversation. His little brother Albert lies together with Kyle, like the brothers Jan and Dan, mostly in one bed. Albert is wiping over his flat belly: “And always so much.”

Dodung, Bernie and Neko are also rubbing their flat bellies.

“But when we are in the village, we usually have only Tamban and rice,” Phil reports.

“That’s true,” says Aboy, “or we eat other fish, or catch crabs. We all have no money. No money, no honey.”

After the laughing about Aboy’s joke, Sam grimaces: “Or we torture us with Corned Beef or Beef Loaf from cans. Ugh!”

Aboy laughs: “Or we claw coconuts!”

Jan is cheerfully: “Or picking forbidden green papayas or mangoes.”

“That great food that we eat at present, we eat actually only for Christmas, birthday or when we have Fiesta in the village,” says Sam.

Dodung looks thoughtfully: “Since the five of you have been here, we’ve been Fiesta every day. The hustle and bustle they do about you are really crazy: TV interview, always big and yummy breakfast and all are artificially friendly now.” The boys see Dodung deep breathing and grinning: “I want that too!” He jokes: “When I’m out of here, I’ll look for a foreigner, go with him in a hotel, call the BSWD and the TV and then (He claps loudly his hands.) — Bingo!”

“Dodung, you are going crazy!” Aboy comments and makes a stupid face.

Jan wonders also about Dodung’s thoughts: “Dodung, you sniffed too much Rugby-glue.”

Sam shakes his head: “Yes, yes, Rugby.”

Dodung doesn’t pay attention to the remarks.

….

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Filipino life

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• End of page • Copyright © by NOKBEW™ • 2021/07 •

Journey into Disaster • Chapter 9.00. online • Mik and Vicente •

Chapter 9.00. online • Excerpt and preview • The novel as book and ebook will be published soon.

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Dear NOKBEW™ – Blog visitors

Novel

Journey into Disaster

I proudly present chapter

9.00. Mik and Vicente

Thomas Heger (Tommy) was arrested in the Philippines. There are bad suspicions against him. Now he is talking with his friend Mik and his wife Vicente — parents of one of the five involved boys.

Excerpt:

….
The shower with cold water is really good. I feel reborn and when I step out of the shower, Vicente and her Mik are already sitting there. Since they were the first visitors this morning, they managed to get hold of three chairs. The slowly circling Zombies from the other cells ignore us.

As yesterday, the greeting is very emotional. They brought with them freshly baked rolls, yeast pieces and four mugs of coffee on a carrier that actually has room for six coffee. Vicente guesses my thoughts, looks around quickly and whispers: “We gave two coffee to the officers at the gate.”

We grin surreptitiously: “So did they allow you to sleep in the watchtower again?”

“And we were even able to use the shower at the back of the tower,” explains Mik. He brought a kind of goulash of liver and kidney and rice in small bags for himself.

“Tommy, sorry we’re late.” Mik pours the rice and the goulash on the paper plate.

“We got into the tower late to sleep, because of the disco and the fireworks,” says Vicente happily.

“No problem, you two, I slept. Mik, what you have on your plate looks good.”

“Do you want?”

“No, no, buns and the yeast pieces are okay with me.”

“Mik doesn’t care about cakes and sweets,” explains Vicente and looks at her husband in love.

“Sweets? Except for Coke and you, of course,” Mik replies, and looks in love with Vicente.

We laugh and enjoy the minutes.

“Mik and Vicente, do you have a plan for when you want to go back to the village?” My voice sounds sadder than I want it to be.

“I’m staying, Tommy!” shouts Mik immediately and lights a More after breakfast.

“Unfortunately I have to go back today. School starts tomorrow and my little ones need me.”

“Vicente, you don’t have to apologize. I think everyone else will travel back too?”

….

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• End of page • Copyright © by NOKBEW™ • 2021/07 •

Journey into Disaster • Chapter 8.02. online • The Filipino way •

Chapter 8.02. online • Excerpt and preview • The novel as book and ebook will be published soon.

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Dear NOKBEW™ – Blog visitors

Novel

Journey into Disaster

I proudly present chapter

8.02. The Filipino way

Thomas Heger (Tommy) was arrested in the Philippines. There are bad suspicions against him. Now he discusses with his friends from the village “The Filipino way.” May this solve his problems?

Excerpt:

….
I turn to Kagawad(*): “Did you talk to Attorney De Baron about a solution through the back door? The Attorney has told something like this.”

“You know, De Baron has been drunken so fast, it was not possible to have a long conversation with him.”

Romolo laughs: “Drinking master!”

Vicente, Romolo’s niece, says with a grin: “You, Mik, Kagawad and Attorney became fast best friends yesterday!”

Romolo beats his niece slightly.

Mik plays outrage: “Hey, do not hit my wife!”

We are happy and laughter cheerful.

“Oh, here is a good mood,” comments Franco, which just arrives us.

“Nobody is able to kill our happiness and joy of life, Franco, no one!” I answer and come back to the subject: “Can be the back door a way, Kagawad?”

Franco fixes the plastic boxes with the remaining food.

“Take it!” I tell him.

Kagawad smokes and coughs in his hand: “The Filipino way is always possible.”

I cry out: “Yes and how? Damn, I have to get out of here immediately. The entire situation is unbearable!”

Franco gets alert by the words: “The Filipino way.” With a full mouth he says: “I talked already to De Baron. The policewomen are out of game.”

“Indeed, that’s too late!” Kagawad confirms.

Franco swallows his bite, drinking Coke and continues: “Next week, Tommy, the file goes to the state prosecutor. Then we will see which prosecutor gets it.”

Kagawad cut off Franco’s sentence: “That’s our man, Tommy!”

Franco nods and eats with healthy appetite. We take one more Marlboro.

Vicente looks at her husband, uncle Romolo, Kagawad and me with a critical eye: “You should really reduce smoking.”

I fix the cigarette between my fingers and get a guilty conscience: “Vicente is right as always!”

We laugh again.

Vicente moves her face to a grimace: “You are disgusting.”

Should I ask this question: “How much money needs the Filipino way?” My decision is “No!” I do not want to discuss that with so many friends. No, I will talk with the Attorney about it.

…..

End excerpt

[End of Chapter 8

(*) Mayor

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• End of page • Copyright © by NOKBEW™ • 2021/06 •

Journey into Disaster • Chapter 8.01. online • Unpleasant topics •

Chapter 8.01. online • Excerpt and preview • The novel as book and ebook will be published soon.

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Dear NOKBEW™ – Blog visitors

Novel

Journey into Disaster

I proudly present chapter

8.01. Unpleasant topics

Thomas Heger (Tommy), arrested in the Philippines, has visitors from the village. There is a lot to clarify.

Excerpt:

….
Nevertheless, the unpleasant topic of “Anonymous caller” burns in me (in Tommy). “Kagawad, is what I heard true? There are rumors and gossip in the village that the anonymous caller who informed the police is from Sendong City or from our village?

Kagawad seems surprised and replies: “My wife has also told me about it. I called her early this morning. But honest, Tommy, that’s stupid talking and gossip! Forget that! That’s always so. No matter what happens, immediately the rumor kitchen cooks up and immediately the story is more bloody, as it really is, or is made more interesting with false information.”

After his speech, I am a little relaxed: “It does not matter where the call has come from, because that does not change my bad situation. But can it be that there is someone jealous or angry, because I do not support his child, nor his family?”

Again Kagawad replies: „The envy of one another is often there. Especially when people brag about their possessions. With a new motorcycle, for example, even if a loan is running out. Perhaps some of your children in the village boasted of your support. Perhaps this caller just wanted to give you a little warning only and couldn’t imagine what a big story his call would create.”

“Yes, that bad person couldn’t have known what kind of story it would lead to,” adds Vicente sadly.

Romolo spits and croaks: “The people are stupid. Like children. They have no idea what they are doing.”

Kagawad, Vicente and Mik nod.

I hate the topic, and I take my wallet out of my pocket: “Oh, almost eleven o’clock, we have to take care of lunch.”

Romolo drinks the rest of the water, burps and replies: “Wait, Tommy! Rica’s daughter wanted to bring something. Grilled pork and such.”

“Delicious lechon baboy! Pig grilled on a bamboo pole! I’m getting hungry.”

The mood is better now. Seconds of silence follow. Suddenly there are worry lines on Kagawad’s forehead, apparently he is thinking about something.

His emotions are reflected in his face. Is that why I like him so much? I ask him directly, as his expression worries me: “Kagawad, is there anything else? Maybe on the subject of an Attorney? How was it there yesterday?”

Kagawad is clearly looking for words. A few puffs later from the cigarette, he replies: “The Attorney is okay. I had a good conversation with him while he was sober.”

We laugh, but Romolo’s laughter ends in a fit of coughing. Vicente pats her uncle on the back, worried.

Kagawad continues: “Attorney De Baron has expressed surprise that nobody warned you not to travel alone with the children.”

….

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• End of page • Copyright © by NOKBEW™ • 2021/06 •

Journey into Disaster • Chapter 8.00. online • Gossip •

Chapter 8.00. online • Excerpt and preview • The novel as book and ebook will be published soon.

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Dear NOKBEW™ – Blog visitors

Novel

Journey into Disaster

I proudly present chapter

8.00. Rumors and gossip

Thomas Heger is talking with Vicente and Mik.

Excerpt:

….
Heger ask: “Is there anything new in the village?”

Vicente suddenly has a very sad face. That worries me: “Vicente, everything is okay in the village?”

Vicente searches for words: “We spoke to my mother on the phone yesterday. Very strange rumors are circulating in the village.”

Mik interrupts his wife: “It is said that the anonymous phone call the police received was from Sendong City or even the village.”

Vicente is close to tears: “The story goes that someone was just waiting for an opportunity to discredit you.”

“To beat you up, Tommy!” Mik shouts a little too loudly. Officer Sarang, who is now working on his laptop, looks up briefly.

“Bringing myself into disrepute and beating me up? But why? Do I have enemies in the village? That would be new to me. Everyone has always been really nice and friendly. It never gave a bad word anywhere.”

“Maybe someone is jealous of you!” Whispers Vicente and explains: “Envious and angry because you supported this and that child and their family, but not the child of the caller. Maybe that’s why?”

“Yes, but who is telling something like that and who is it supposed to be?”

“These are just rumors and gossip! You shouldn’t give credit to that. Typical village chatter. I heard that someone said that, which in turn he or she heard from him or her and so on and so on. It’s stupid gossip! Mik wipes the sweat from his forehead and groans: “I need a cigarette now, but it isn’t allowed here in the office?”

The rumors in the village are confusing and unsettling. The office suddenly seems too cramped and musty to me. It’s hot, and it’s hard to breathe. I have to go out, I need fresh oxygen and I get hectic: “Officer Sarang, sorry for disturbing, but would it be okay if I talk to my friends at the cell forecourt?”

….

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• End of page • Copyright © by NOKBEW™ • 2021/06 •

Journey into Disaster • Chapter 7.03. online • Shocking Asia! •

Chapter 7.03. online • Entire chapter • The novel as book and ebook will be published soon.

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Dear NOKBEW™ – Blog visitors

Novel

Journey into Disaster

I proudly present chapter

7.03. The end of the day

The German, Thomas Heger, has been arrested in the Philippines. Now he thinks about his situation.

Entire chapter:

….
Reading makes me tired. The newspapers are mostly written in English in addition to the Visayan language. I do not understand the Visayan text and the English often exceeds my linguistic level. There is nothing about me. Maybe in the coming Saturday or Sunday editions? I put on my imaginary shopping list: Buy newspapers.

It’s already after seven o’clock. How are the parents and friends in De Baron’s office? Whether the Witness Affidavits are already made?

Outside it is dark. The temperatures are bearable now, and the city comes to life. There are noises on the road: honking, starting and screeching brakes of vehicles. Roaring of motorcycles with small engines and missing silencers. Street vendors yelling against the traffic noise to sell their stuff. Every now and then music swells up briefly with a pounding bass, but quickly fades away again. Vehicles as rolling discos. Minibuses or motorcycles with additional space for passengers. I hear young teenagers screaming aggressively to announce the destination of the vehicles and attract passengers. Next to the street, there are small barbecue grills opening. Like every evening in every municipality in the Philippines.

The disco on the square in front of the police station is starting, because the bass already roars.

Just a week ago I was still free in Sendong City with friends in a restaurant. I ate fried chicken and drank a delicious cold beer. When thinking of a cold beer, I get fucking thirsty. A beer is now unreachable, and that’s hard to endure.

I’m sad and talk to myself: “Enjoy life. Doing what I want. Being happy. Not longer possible.” I compute the expenses of the last days. “That has been 20.000 Piso every day since Saturday. Six days and about 400 Euro every day. In total, that’s around 2.400 Euro. Plus the 120.000 Piso for the Attorney, which is also equivalent to about 2.400 Euro.” I startle and moan towards the cobweb carpet at the bottom of the bed above me: “Oh, my God! That’s already 4.800 Euro in just six days! With what result? The result is, I’m sitting in a stinking and dark dungeon!” The candle flickering on the floor illuminates the situation a little. While observing the cobwebs, I notice a spider the size of a thumbnail spinning a small insect in and preparing it for suck out.

Frustration arises: “The suck out has to stop! The parents and friends have to go back to the village, the children out of the BSWD or eat what they cook in the Youth Home. The basic problem is my damned situation! I have to get out of here. Do something, Tommy!”

Now I stand at the cell door and look into the sultry tropical night. The two halogen spotlights are apparently near the end of their service life and therefore only poorly illuminate the cell forecourt. The diffuse light of the spotlights in combination with the colorful flashes of light from the festival appears almost cozy under the palm and the huge mahogany trees. The only things that are missing are the sea, the friends, the good food and the beer. Then it would be like a beach resort. Enjoy life and freedom happily and carefree.

The gray cat sneaks past, stops moving forward, turns her head curiously towards me, sees me, meows invitingly and jumps away. “Is she mocking me?” I ask into the night and am angry. “This stupid cat is better than me! She is free and can do what she wants.”

Anger and frustration are in me: “Damn it, who or what gives the police the right to lock me down in this unworthy dungeon? Then these extremely caustic media people. Sniffing the sensation? And the non-governmental organization in the village of the parents. What does that mean? Certainly nothing good!”

Attorney De Baron and his stupid talking over the media and the NGOs. He is an oily aging womanizer, but — whatever — somewhere funny. Everything is not a problem for him. “Next week you go home!” he said.

I pull a tiny piece of porous rust from the steel bar of the lattice door: “Attorney Pizarro, who immediately threatened an extremely high prison sentence. That’s the business with fear. I do not go in his trap! Then Attorney Paternesto with his unrealistic offer. Does he believe he could rip me off? Does he not want the mandate?

I am also amazed at the police and scratch the rust on the steel door: “On the one hand, the police treat me very kindly. They even allow me to meet the little boys. In their eyes the five are my victims! They allow communication with my family in Germany and, on the other hand, the humiliating arrest, staged as a TV event. Then there were the disturbing nightly waterboarding, the crude story of the death of Vicente’s father and the persistent silence of the police about my story.”

The rust flake, which I previously broke off a steel bar with my fingernail, I snap into the night and come to the result: “It all doesn’t fit! On the one hand the enjoyable public display during my arrest and on the other hand this strange, overly friendly and courteous treatment in the police station.” I shake my head again today and go on quietly: “Asia confuses, shocks and disappoints me deeply! Asians suddenly become inscrutable and unpredictable! Before I wasn’t aware of this, I didn’t want to see it or I couldn’t see it through my rose-colored holiday glasses!”

From the other cells I hear soft conversations, sighs and snoring noises.

I am quiet now, although my inner voice screams: This is no longer a vacation and finally stop turning poverty in the country into romanticism! Tommy, in what stupid and danger situation put yourself? Unknowingly, blue-eyed and stupid!

On the lattice door I breathe the velvety tropical air and become calm. Back to the shaky bed, I lie again on the mat and the pillow. Both bought Mik.

I speak to the spiders who are undeterred and continue their work: “The parents of the children, my friends here and my family in Germany give confidence and hope.”

I close my eyes and admonish myself: “Tommy, finish the torments in your head!”

It actually only took a few minutes, and I fell asleep.

[End of Chapter 7]

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….

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Filipino life

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• End of page • Copyright © by NOKBEW™ • 2021/06 •

Journey into Disaster • Chapter 7.02. online • Witness Affidavits •

Chapter 7.02. online • Excerpt and preview • The novel as book and ebook will be published soon.

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Dear NOKBEW™ – Blog visitors

Novel

Journey into Disaster

I proudly present chapter

7.02. Witness Affidavits

The German Thomas Heger arrested in the Philippines is in dungeon. On the advice of his Attorney, the parents (of the alleged victims) and Heger’s friends carry out Witness Affidavits.

Excerpt:

….
Kagawad, Marielou, Jonathan and Franco have been waiting outside Attorney De Barons Law Office for about ten minutes. Then Romolo arrived with their son Silas, Michael (Mik) with his wife Vicente and Rica and Lang.

“Tommy looked very sad when we left,” reports Marielou sadly to the parents and Silas.

Jonathan explains that Tommy is now locked away because he has no visitors. Tommy wanted to pass the time with the newspapers and solving puzzles.

In return, the parents report that the boys are doing well in the youth home, that they have made friends and the nice young social worker is giving some school lessons.

The group enters the Law Office of Attorney De Baron. It is located in a small shop on a busy street. At the ceilings, two fans who have all the effort to move the air in the stuffy and humid room. On the walls are notary deeds from Attorney De Baron, private photos, some photos of De Baron with high-ranking local personalities and a price list.

The attractive secretary jumps up, greets the group warmly and asks the visitors to take a seat.

A few minutes later, Attorney De Baron comes through the door of his law office: “Fine that you are here.” De Baron is dressed sportily and elegantly. The bunch of keys with the Toyota car keys jingles on the belt. Lots of pomade shine in the hair that has been combed back tightly.

Franco rushes forward: “Sir, Tommy gave me 5.000 Piso for food and drinks!”

“Well, young man, I would say, get it and don’t forget the bottle of Fundador.” Attorney quickly nods to Romolo, Mik and Kagawad.

The three men answer with a big grin, because the anticipation is written on their faces. Fundador is an expensive but fine brandy. Nobody drinks such a thing in the village, except Kandayo on his birthday. Silas and Jonathan look at each other furtively, because maybe there is a droplet in it for them.

The women Vicente, Rica, Lang and Marielou roll their eyes.

Attorney says to Franco: “But leave an amount left, so we can later buy fresh Lechon Manok and Limpo.” He smiles: “I’m sure, you also like to eat fried chicken and grilled pork belly! And bring a bottle of Sangria for the ladies!” His smug smile at the women seems oily.

Nevertheless, the women smile cautiously.

Franco and Jonathan go to buy the stuff. Kagawad reports that the Attorney can expect Tommy’s 80k Piso early next week. Attorney’s facial expression turns to satisfied. While grinning, he pulls only the right corner of his mouth upwards.

-★-

All Witness Affidavits basically contain the same content. The first two completed Affidavits by Michael (Mik) and his wife Vicente Kabaltos need the longest time. After that, the secretary is mainly busy copying and pasting the text modules and exchanging the names in the copied text. All persons prepare their own Witness Affidavit, except for Jonathan and Silas. The Attorney has a joint affidavit drawn up for the two teenagers. In the text, Tommy’s generosity towards the families is repeated over and over again.

….

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English language

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This is a translation from the German language and it needs a review! I’m searching you! Would you like to check the English language? Please contact me by email for further information. [HERE]

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