Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Cry, Mercy (Fiction- part 1)

My mother was raped when she was seventeen years old.  I am the result.  I am cursed.  I destroy every man I love.

She worked as a housekeeper for a powerful drug lord in Mexico.

Don Miguel Garcia was handsome and cruel.  He was La Mafia.  La Mafia was law.  No one questioned Don Garcia.  His God complex allowed him to order men to their deaths and women to his bed.

La Cocaina was his goddess. She reigned supreme.  Cocaine was responsible for his livelihood, his power, his actions and his unrelenting cruelty.

Dona Theresa Lobo Garcia loved him with all the anger and jealousy of her soul.  Her heart ached constantly within her breast.  She knew of his infidelities, but understood he would always return to her.

"They are just churches, mi vida.  But YOU are a cathedral," he would say when confronted with her bitter tears.    

She helplessly learned to turn a blind eye.  So long as he was discreet she said nothing.  She would not be shamed.  How miserable to love a man with a wanton eye!

Don Garcia enjoyed a conquest.  A challenge excited him.  Women were never a challenge.  His charm, expensive gifts and beauty always won him the object of his desire.

He set his sights on my mother.  Thus began the downfall of us all.

My mother was proud and God-fearing.  "I am no harlot!" she said sharply in reply to a playful smack on her firm bottom.

No one had ever spoken to him this way.  The defiant fire in her eyes excited him.  He took her.

When he accomplished the task at hand he said, "Tell anyone, Senorita, and I will kill you."

He left her broken and torn on the floor of his great house.  He lit a cigar as he walked away.  She heard his sigh of satisfaction and vomited.

My mother told no one.

That night Dona Garcia dreamed.  Her Abuela came to her in a fury.

"Mira!  Mira lo que paso hoy mismo en tu propia casa!" she ranted.

She showed Dona Garcia a vision of her husband and my mother ealier that day.  She showed her a vision of my mother great with child.

The angry old woman continued, "I will allow you to be shamed no longer!"  She gave Dona Garcia a dagger and disappeared.

The lady of the house awoke in a blind rage to find her husband sleeping soundly by her side.  Clasped in her hand a dagger gleamed in the moonlight.  A scream escaped her throat.

Moments later hot blood gushed from the chest of the man who thought himself so mighty.  Try as she might she could not stop the dagger from plunging time and time again.

"One wound for every whore, mi amor!" she wailed.  "One wound for every whore!"

My mother awoke to the bloody, wild-eyed woman looming above her bed.

"You killed my love!  You nasty little slut!  And for that the bastard child which grows within you will be cursed.  She will be the destruction of every man who loves her.  She will suffer greatly, even as I suffer! I will have justice!"

With that, the dignified Dona plunged the soiled dagger into her own heart.

"You are mine alone at last, my love."

So... here I am.  The illustrious "bastard child".  As a child I was told every gory detail as a bedtime story.  My mother wanted to ensure I understood the serverity of my plight.

I have lived in the United States for many years now.  I understand that American mothers do not terrify their little ones with tales of demons and spirits. 

Mexican mothers love to scare their kids with the devil and tales of the ghostly Bloody Mary.  In this case, my mother scared me with stories of boys and men and Love. 

She named me Mercy, or Merced,  in the hopes God would take pity on me and remove the curse.  But Dona Garcia had threatened she would have justice.  Mercy cannot rob justice. 

"Love will bring you nothing but pain, Merced," she warned. 

As a child I was terrified to even look at a boy.  I had a great fear of "suffering greatly".  It wasn't until I became a rebellious teen I started to doubt the validity of my mother's story.

I don't doubt it now.

As a teen I allowed myself a few crushes.  I wouldn't really call what I experienced Love.  Still, there were repercussions.

The boy that asked me to my Junior Prom was bedridden for the remainder of the school year with a nasty case of mono.

Another handsome young man made the mistake of sending me roses on Valentine's Day.  His nose was prompty broken by a baseball the next day.

The older I got the more awful the consequence.

I attempted an actual relationship with a guy I really liked my Senior year of high school.  I was pleasantly surprised to discover he suffered no ill effects right away.

Then one night after a delicious sushi dinner my new boyfriend attempted to kiss me.  He immediately puked violently on my shoes and then messed his pants repeatedly. Food poisoning.  He was wisked off in an amubulance.

My childhood faith in the curse returned.  I felt responsible for the punishments these young men recieved.  The guilt consumed me.  I was miserable.  I vowed never to let it happen again.  For years I refused the attentions of any male. 

But a passionate Latina woman cannot live on bread alone. As I matured I craved the attentions of a man.  I wanted to be loved.  I wanted to be kissed and held.  I wanted to wrap my arms around someone and never let go.  I had fanciful ideas about Love and would spend hours imagining the possibilities.

I had no idea the hell I would endure nor the pain I would cause.  I don't know that I could have stopped the course of nature even if I had tried.  Anyone who has been in Love knows she comes without warning or permission.  Love can bring the sweetest joy this life has to offer.  Love brought me disaster in her wake.

To be continued... 
ps I kinda like this picture.  It captures the whole passionate, pissed off Latina thing. :)