The Eskrimadora of the Bautista Blood
The first time she was 10. Her Mother held her hand as they moved through a door to The World. They paused there, her breath rasped in her throat hot and dry.
“What are we?”
Her mother’s small calloused hand squeezed. The little girl answered.
“We are the Eskrimadora of the Bautista blood. We are The protectors of the Innocent. We are the light in the dark.”
Her little voiced got stronger with every word. She let go of her Mother’s hand and drew her sticks. She trusted her strong little body and hard hands.
The door closed behind them and the heat and noise of Manila faded to nothing.
She knew the fight would come to them, the wet, decaying underbrush to their right moved and they turned as one.
She answered with the taste of the blood of her enemies on her tongue.
“Let them come to see their death and love us.”
Fueled by the blood of generations of Warrior women they braced themselves. Reptile like creatures with huge eyes half mad with their mission came at them.
Their sticks flashed and struck at the soft spots on the creature’s throats, they ululated as the blood showered upon them, they howled curses in Tagalog when the creatures caught them with tooth or claw.
The Darkness closed in as the creatures fell, the little girl snatched at her Mother’s hand and they ran back towards the door and the light. The lesson was learned, it was time to go home. Her Mother pulled her talisman from around her neck and called.
“Open the door.”
Ahead of them a crack of light, then the silhouette of The Doorman loomed.
“Good eve ladies. Your talisman if you please.”
Her mother held it up and the Darkness behind them recoiled from the light the talisman gathered to itself and shone on its champions.
“Welcome back to the world. Take care and leave your rage at the door.”
The little girl always remembered how it felt when the light of the hot Manila night touched her skin. Bloody and ebullient the two warriors slipped into the night to find their healer.
Now the little girl is a woman. Her hair is cut short, she is a rusty voiced Butchy purply lipped brick house of a Warrior. She stands alone this time, waiting for the Darkness to close in and for the fight to come to her. A long skinny manlike thing steps from a shadow and spoke in a high reedy voice.
“What are you Warrior?”
She smiles at it.
“I am the Eskrimadora of the Bautista blood. I am The protectors of the Innocent. I am the light in the dark. I am your death. Come love me.”