Wednesday, April 21, 2010

A lady Crime Buster

                                                 Cover photograph is Jasmin Gallardo Gallano, 26 years of age from Bicol Region Sorsogon City. She graduated at Philippine College of Criminology where she took up Bachelor of Science in Criminology and now in College of Law at Philippine Law School, Pasay Taft.She is assigned at Eastern Police District under District Safety Batallion. With her kind permission, she allow the author to use her photograph as a cover photo.With join force and salute to our Police Officers."They Strive...They Learn...They Lead!!!"-mahaliahscent

A Lady Crime Buster
by: Emily N. Calicdan(Mahaliahscent)
                                                   Paranaque NationalHigh School (Main),PNHS
Edited by: Christopher Collins, Bedford College
Professor, Khatoum, Sudan

Note from the Author: All Characters in this story have no existence outside the imagination of the author and have no relation whatsoever to anyone bearing the same name or names. They are not even distantly inspired by any individual known or unknown to the author, and all the incidents are just invention.

About a part of the novel: "A Lady Crime Buster" is a story consists  of 27 chapters 336 pages with an introduction and Epilogue Unpublished by the author for her collections and passion in writing.Thanks for reading. God is love.

                  Alyssa opened the door to her small, two-room, studio apartment and stepped outside to throw out the garbage. She took the opportunity to take in a few breaths of the marginally fresher air out in the street. She could taste the fetid air of the apartment in the back of her throat. Alyssa gave a jump as a large, grey rat scurried through her legs and out into the street. She aimed a kick at it and almost screamed in her frustration and despair. It was late in the morning ... she had woken up late after a 24 hour shift at work. To be precise: at the three different jobs she was holding down at present. Alyssa was working all the hours God gave her simply to survive and to make ends meet. Still, she reflected bitterly on the state of her home and the run-down neighbourhood in which she lived.
          It was the noise of the garbage truck outside that woke her. The whole area was too noisy but she’d gotten used to it. She could probably sleep through a raging hurricane with the practice she’d had. Despite her inner grumblings the people in the neighbourhood were good to her. They’d made her feel welcome in the area and were willing to offer their help and support in whatever way they could.

            Alyssa turned to go back into her squalid little home. As she did so, she heard a commotion – something was flaring up further down the street. At that moment, shots rang out and Alyssa instinctively crouched down and cowered in the door-frame. Stones, thrown from nowhere, rattled against the pavement and the side of her building, almost hitting her in the face.
More gang trouble, Alyssa thought to herself. Yet what do we expect in a place like this? Her mind added by way of explanation.
           Alyssa scurried inside and hurriedly closed the door, securing the double locks and the security bar. She then rushed to the windows and secured them also. Tell-tale signs of the sort of neighbourhood in which she was forced to eke out her sorry existence. Alyssa then got down on the floor – a position she often adopted at times like these – to avoid stray bullets that might burst through the thin walls of her apartment.

        Alyssa’s solitary occupation of her squalid little home comes as no surprise – such an environment of poverty and violence was no place for decent folk. Her parents and other family members had long since moved to villages outside the sprawling metropolis to avoid the risks. It was almost as if some people in the community were not happy unless there was some sort of feud going on, with violence and injury, even death, frequent consequences of such disagreements.

“Aren’t you afraid? Don’t you fear for your own life?” we asked Alyssa on one visit -  a visit which brought us much closer to the real dangers of the neighbourhood than we wished as Police pursued a group of burglars. The tension was too much to bear and I found myself wondering if I was going to die here. Yet I looked at Alyssa as she sat calmly drinking her morning coffee and reading the newspaper.
“Sit down.  Relax. Let the Police and the military handle it.”
After 3 hours of hiding in that cramped little studio, fearing that the trouble might suddenly burst through the door, we heard only the sirens of Police cars and ambulances. As we raised our heads to peep through the windows, we saw only groups of curious bystanders looking on as the Police and emergency personnel went about their duties. Many of the public were taking up positions and posing for the cameras of the numerous media who had gathered to report on the incident and witness the arrest of the criminals.
           I look again at Alyssa…  “How can you stay here?” I ask. “It’s not safe”
“Where else can I find a rent-free place to stay?” She replies. “I can’t afford to move somewhere else”
“But how can you move on in your life if you stay here?” I press, hoping to convince her to move away…
“Maybe if I got a good job and a good salary, I could move out…” Alyssa said, somewhat sardonically, knowing that that was the end of the discussion.

              That was five years ago. Since that day, I had never returned to see Alyssa.
As I turned to leave my house and attend to my morning schedule, my attention was caught by an item on the local news programme on the television. There had been another Police raid in that very same neighbourhood where Alyssa lived. The face on the screen was suddenly so familiar to me… is that Alyssa? How, when did she become this person I am seeing? She used to be this meek, innocent, passive person. Couldn’t fight, could only hide on the floor in times of trouble. Brave, yes – but only because she could live in that slum for so long.
“Sgt Alyssa M. Mohad – the assault team leader…” the report continued.
So. She never gave up on her studies. Finished her degree in Business Management and now she is a Police Officer, assault team leader, a crime-buster.
“Hmmmm… I hope she’ll tell us how she became a Police Officer and how she changed her character when we all meet up for our grand 25th anniversary High School reunion”.
I need to get a move on and get to my office as it’s a busy day ahead. But at least I can go, confident that I need no longer worry about my best friend who I’d not seen for so long…