TN: Late, I have no excuse aside from lack of internet. Haha. Here’s the Friendly update. Have fun reading. XD
“Yes, collect all the dirt, Wife. Like that. Yes. Then put it all into the dustpan. Okay. Like that. You’re doing it right.”
Sapphire sighed. Dust had accumulated so much into the dustpan that she was holding and she really had this impulse to throw them all at Johann’s face. But since sweeping the floor was not actually very difficult, she would let her plan slide.
Johann finally took from her the broom and dustpan. He was the one who threw the trashes at the back of the house. When he returned, he’s got a mop with him. He started demonstrating how to mop the floor starting from the living room to the kitchen.
Sapphire really wanted to ignore what Johann was blabbering about and then purposely execute his teaching wrongly. But the case is, she doesn’t know why despite attempting to ignore Johann, she still ends up listening to his teaching.
He’s really an effective teacher. It seems he was really very much liked by his students.
And if he’s an effective teacher, she can’t let herself lose to him. She has to show him that she’s a ‘good student’. Talk about pride. It’s part of being a Monteverde. Maybe only her Mom doesn’t have it since that woman always kept on pestering those who had left her behind.
When Johann gave her the mop, she started polishing the floor. Ten minutes later, she’s done mopping. No scolding or complaints was heard coming from Johann. He was only quietly watching what she was doing.
“Okay, I’m done here, Husband.” She stomps in irritation while returning the mop to him. “What else would you like me to do?” Her inquiry was not without grumbling.
He gave her a smile and using one of his hands, he gently wiped off the sweat on her forehead. “You grew tired so easily. Rest first then let’s get out to the street. Let’s eat snack.”
“Okay.” She turned around and directly walked towards the room. She fetched up a towel and headed to the bathroom.
After taking a bath, she put on a red cotton shirt and white shirt. Then she dried her hair first before combing it. When she finished, she went to the living room. Johann was there, comfortably sitting and watching TV.
“My wife is so pretty,” he greeted when he saw her coming over.
Sapphire rolled her eyes. “I want to eat now. We’re going to have snacks, right?”
He turned off the TV. “Yes, of course. Come with me. We’re going to the street corner over there. Manang Lisa’s banana cue is so delicious. Like, oh my gosh.”
Her forehead wrinkled and then she hits him on the arm. “Are you making fun of me?”
“You’re so conyo, that’s why.” He put his arm around her shoulder and guided her outside the house. “Sometimes you’re also nitpicky.”
She strongly elbowed him on his side.
“Ouch! Nothing like that, please.”
“Why are you telling me I’m nitpicky.”
“Because you are nitpicky. As if I should say your shirt is yellow even though it’s obviously red?” He opened up the gate and then they exited out from there. They walk side to side while all the people they met on the street said their ‘Congratulations’ to them.
“The whole subdivision knew that we’re married?”
“Yeah. I let it spread.”
She suddenly glanced at him. “Huh? Why?”
“Eh, they’re my neighbours, you know. I’m quite proud to be married to a beautiful maiden who wants to build a bookstore.” He smiled at her. “But seriously, I only told one person about this then it spread. Also, when I brought you here last week, the whole subdivision grew excited about my upcoming wedding. You know, I’m a huge threat to all men here,” he laughingly said.
“You’re so boastful.”
“Wow, I’m so ashamed to you.”
She pouted and folded her arms in front of her chest. Her attention was focused on the road they’re walking at. “Am I really that arrogant? Am I really capricious?” She suddenly became self-conscious. It’s because no one had told her before about her being arrogant and nitpicky. Only Johann did.
“Based on my observations, yeah. Can’t you feel how arrogant and nitpicky you are?”
“No. But I know I am prideful. But I never noticed that I’m too proud or nitpicky. I mean, I grew up like this. No one ever scolded me about it so I thought, it’s just okay.”
“It’s still alright. It’s because you have the right to be boastful since being Monteverde is something worthy of being bragged about. You also have the right to be nitpicky because like how you said it, you grew up that way. However, on this world that you’re living at, there’s a need for you to adjust. You married an ordinary guy like me, Sapphire. You will encounter people who won’t be able to understand why you are like that, that’s why as your friend and husband, I’m already telling you what I can observe from you which you can probably change or adjust.”
“So, I just can’t be me, is that it?”
“Be yourself, Wife. But we have this so called ‘associating’. You only have to adjust slightly. Your negatives, let’s change them into positive.”
She suddenly stared at him. He was probably very friendly because he knows how to mingle well with the others. “You care about people,” she mumbled.
He shrugged. Meanwhile they turned to a narrow street. Later on, they’re in front of a barong-barong which sells banana cue as displayed outside.
“Good afternoon, Manang Lisa!” Johann greeted the old woman who was somehow fat and was the food vendor. “How’s the sale?”
“Oh, Johann! Nice, child. Fortunately you’re not so late. My banana cues are almost sold out. Look here, see. There’s only eight sticks left.”
“Really, man! Your sale’s so good, Manang! I told you before, your banana cue is really delicious. I’m correct, right? It clicked with our neighbours.”
“Right. Fortunately, I followed your suggestion to sell here. It’s quite an addition to my kids’ pocket money for school.”
“That’s good, Manang. By the way, I brought my wife over. She’s Sapphire, by the way,” Johann’s introduction to her.
Manang Lisa stares went to her and then the woman smiled warmly after seeing her. “Hija, you are so beautiful! How are you?”
She smiled back to the old lady. “Thank you po, Manang Lisa. I’m just fine. Somehow adjusting to my new home.”
“It’s really like that for newlyweds. And I can say you’re lucky since Johann is a decent and nice guy. Only a bit fool,” the old woman hushed in whisper.
“Hey, Manang, I heard that!” Johann butted in. “Tsk. Now instead of buying six sticks, I’ll only buy five.” He gets one stick and handed it to her. “Taste this, Wife. This is the most delicious banana cue that you can ever taste.”
She took it from him and secretly whispered. “Is this clean?”
He nodded and even gave her a thumbs-up. That’s only when she took a bite of the still-hot banana cue. And Johann was right. It was indeed delicious!
Sapphire did not notice when she finished eating the two bananas on that single stick because of the deliciousness. In the end, Johann rung the golden bell for the remaining banana cues and then they ate happily while walking home.
Sapphire’s annoyance towards Johann because of making her do household chore suddenly disappeared.
“The day after tomorrow, let’s go to the beach, you want?” Johann asked her while they’re sitting on the sofa next to each other and finishing their banana cues. “Like what I said to you this morning, I’m serious about getting a vacation for the two of us.”
She shrugged. “Okay. No problem with me. Can I bring my cousins with me? Maybe they also want to go to the beach.”
“Uy, that sounds fun. Fine, I’ll also try to invite my cousins. Even if they are busy, I’ll pester them.”
She glanced at him. “You know, Johann, you’re right. We’re newlyweds that’s why we have to be productive. Our marriage will only last for one year, let’s make it really productive!” She suddenly thought of something to do.
Johann abruptly stopped chewing. “What do you mean?”
She inched closer to him. Then, she leaned to get much closer. “I think you’re going to like what I’m thinking.”
His forehead creased and his eyes grew large. “W-what are you thinking?”
She put her hands on his chest for support. “It’s something fun.”
He swallowed. “Is there a bed involved?”
It seems like an idea sparked in her mind. “Probable!” she exclaimed and then her thoughts spun faster. She inched much closer to him because of excitement.
However, Sapphire possessed some degree of stupidity. The hand on his chest which supports her slipped and so her face fell to his.
What’s worst, her lips touched Johann’s!
She gasped and swiftly backed away from him. Because of panicking, she fell down from the sofa but she had grabbed Johann’s shirt that’s why he also fell alongside her. When she fell down to the floor, he also fell on top of her.
And once again, their lips accidentally touched! Sapphire’s eyes grew so large and when she attempted to scream, it ended in failure because she felt her husband’s lips moving.
Why is it like this? She was frozen. And her eyes started to close by themselves because of his sweet kiss…
Manang – honorific for older lady
Banana cue – made with deep fried bananas coated in caramelized brown sugar. The bananas used for this recipe are Saba bananas, which are very commonly used for cooking in the Philippines. It is usually skewered on a bamboo stick, and sold on the streets.
Conyo – please, not the Spanish definition. Conyo, in the Philippines, can mean 1. interchanging Tagalog and English in a single sentence or 2. excessive use of “like” in sentences. In the chapter, it’s basically the first because Sapphire kept on interchanging Filipino and English in her sentences.
po – a word signifying that the speaker was speaking politely
barong-barong – a dilapidated house, make-shift dwelling, or a hut