Chapter 38: - Page 4 of 4

Fatality

(English version of “El Filibusterismo”)

Carolino paused, thinking that he recognized something familiar about that figure, which stood out plainly in the sunlight.  But the corporal threatened to tie him up if he did not fire, so Carolino took aim and the report of his rifle was heard.  The man on the rock spun around and disappeared with a cry that left Carolino horror-stricken.

Then followed a rustling in the bushes, indicating that those within were scattering in all directions, so the soldiers boldly advanced, now that there was no more resistance.  Another man appeared upon the rock, waving a spear, and they fired at him.  He sank down slowly, catching at the branch of a tree, but with another volley fell face downwards on the rock.

The guards climbed on nimbly, with bayonets fixed ready for a hand-to-hand fight.  Carolino alone moved forward reluctantly, with a wandering, gloomy look, the cry of the man struck by his bullet still ringing in his ears.  The first to reach the spot found an old man dying, stretched out on the rock.  He plunged his bayonet into the body, but the old man did not even wink, his eyes being fixed on Carolino with an indescribable gaze, while with his bony hand he pointed to something behind the rock.

The soldiers turned to see Caroline frightfully pale, his mouth hanging open, with a look in which glimmered the last spark of reason, for Carolino, who was no other than Tano, Cabesang Tales’ son, and who had just returned from the Carolines, recognized in the dying man his grandfather, Tandang Selo.  No longer able to speak, the old man’s dying eyes uttered a whole poem of grief—and then a corpse, he still continued to point to something behind the rock.  

Learn this Filipino word:

putók sa buhò