DISCLAIMER: This is a piece of literary fiction, any similarity to anyone living, or dead, or somewhere in between, is purely coincidental and unintentional.
Goldilocks sat by himself outside the Yuku café in the middle of The Mangrove shopping district of Makati, smoking a cigarette, an open book in front of him. Now he’s really in a pickle.
Obviously, after the death of dear old Daddy Oro, in a less than savory position, the family became the subject of a great deal of scrutiny. It didn’t help that dear old Daddy Oro was likewise implicated in a money-laundering scheme, which just hit the country a few months back. Not as if that came as any surprise to Godofredo Jr., even a couple years exiled in the US certainly does not come cheap, especially at the level at which he operated, but it does cramp his style. Dear Mommy Oro, being the newly minted head of the family ordered a lockdown on all spending while she figures out how to fence her jewelry. Lucky for her, she had one heck of a jeweler: Kristine Manansala-Cumbund (I know: such an unfortunate name…) A secret lesbian society matron who collected beautiful maids the same way the late Daddy Oro collected body-beautiful bodyguards: Compulsively, and on the government payroll.
Mrs. Manansala-Cumbund dabbled in a lot of things if it would turn a fast buck or two. Her most recent enterprise involved the liquidation of certain shiny assets secured through less than legal means. She did so with the deft aplomb associated with her status: In her world one thing holds true: No Questions, No Receipt, No Problem. And it didn’t hurt that it was truly a simple, but brilliant, scheme. She would get the jewelry, have it re-set in simpler (read: of lower carat gold) settings at her own workshop in Bulacan, and discreetly sell it piece by piece at the Gold Emporium in Binondo. They would invariably fetch a lower price, especially with Mrs. Manansala-Cumbund’s cut, but hey, better that than to be caught with it sitting in the family vaults. Society matrons after Martial Law learned THAT lesson fairly quickly. Never mind the fact that there is an ACTUAL anti-fencing law in the country: That’s what her politician-encrusted family tree is for.
So while Mommy Oro tied up some loose ends, Goldilocks was left to his own devices, albeit with a drastically diminished budget. He didn’t have enough even for a good old fashioned orgy at the Iambic Towers; where he and his coked-up friends from Congressional Day-Care would crash for a night of debauchery as only Manila’s elite can manage. If only he had a friend who could spot him a couple hundred thousand pesos for a night.
Enter Papa Bear. Goldilocks finishes his coffee and dials Papa Bear’s number. A friend of Daddy Oro, likewise obsessed with fly-fishing and handsome matinee idols, Papa Bear is a prominent, if not THE most prominent member of an old Chinese clan that settled in the Philippines before the war and initially made their fortune as a dealer in airplane spare parts: The fact that these spare parts were actually taken from planes STILL in active duty (which led to countless engine failures, resulting in the death of at least 57 pilots during the war), the family would prefer to forget this, and instead turn your attention to the row of glittering condominiums and commercial centers they have since constructed along scenic EDSA.
Papa Bear is old: ancient in gay years. But he still cut quite a dashing figure in his bespoke Brioni suit as he sits in his office at the top floor of the tallest building in the business district. He smiled broadly as Goldilocks walks in in a low cut pair of Sevens.
“So. The Prodigal Child has returned!” Boomed Papa Bear’s voice. He gets up (with considerable difficulty owing to his considerable heft) to clap Goldilocks on the back, and plant a big wet kiss on his lips. He picks up Goldilocks and set him gently on the couch in the middle of his cavernous office.
Goldilocks’ upper lip tingled after brushing against the rough beard of his Papa Bear. He never really told Daddy Oro how he found his way in Papa Bear’s pants during a charity ball thrown by Malacanang, well, how he found himself on his knees, face buried in well… Just in the interest of being precise. Daddy Oro would’ve had a fit if he found out that one of his closest friends and staunchest political supporters was porking his son, then again, maybe he’d get a kick out it. Part of Manila’s cast of most scintillating characters, Papa Bear’s third wife was chief among the young ladies at that party, his second mistress, now wife, having outlived the first wife and mistress number one: CLEARLY with more hair on her head than fabric on her body, drunk beyond reason, and clueless to the fact that her septuagenarian husband was being blown to high heaven in the men’s room by Goldie himself. Manila society was of course more than happy to ignore all the stories about Papa Bear, him being one of the most affable people you could hope to meet, and since he keeps himself surrounded by young, attractive women, people were more than happy to turn a blind eye.
Papa Bear and Daddy Oro go way back though, thus they shared everything, oftentimes, even a playmate or two: their friendship was further solidified when Daddy Oro (as one of the directors of a very powerful media outlet at the time) made sure that an unfortunate event involving Papa Bear, an award-winning dramatic actor, and a large “bottle of hoisin sauce”, was covered up and made to go away. After that, Papa Bear was grateful for the service, and backed Daddy Oro ever since.
Looking at Papa Bear, all round, handsome, and smiling on the couch across him, he couldn’t help but think if that’s when he made the conscious decision to discover just how large the “bottle of hoisin sauce” really is. And when he did slip his hand down those tailored pants, well…
To be continued…