The Jealous Waling-Waling

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Author: Zea Perez

Edited by JECaulton

Deep in a lush canopy of dipterocarp trees bestriding the high and mighty forest mountains of the Bagobo Tribe flourishes a community of beautiful flowers called Philippine Waling-Waling. Waling-Waling is an epiphyte orchid plant. The sun basks them a needed light to produce food with enough aid for the rains and mists. The bees and the butterflies visit them regularly. They admire their beauty, scent, syrup and help them reproduce.

At her prime flowering moment is Vanda. She is an orchid with bright rose flower stalks and has large blooms. Her lateral sepals are bright yellow, with rose colouration towards the margins, and densely covered with large purple reticulated veins. Her dorsal sepals and petals of rose-coloured on the upper half, while the lower half has brownish-purple spots. It makes Vanda and her kind the queen of the Philippine flowers.

This time is their flowering season. The bees and the butterflies are busy socializing with their orchid friends.

But Vanda is a jealous Waling-Waling. She gets envious secretly when the bees and the butterflies visit other young orchids to admire their beauty and scent.

“Vanda, that young yellowish Waling-Waling is stunning!”

When she hears this, Vanda feels insecure. Instead of being grateful that the other orchids are pretty and healthy like her, she will torment herself that she is not attractive anymore. She will agonize herself that she is not good enough.

Today, Vanda has a plan. They will know her as the fairest of all. “I will be the most attractive Waling-Waling today,” she declares. She makes her petals stunningly pink, and her scent ensures it conquers even the tiny corners of the forest. Vanda uses all the enzymes, making her the most enticing flower of all.

“I am sure I will have all the attention of the bees and the butterflies, and I shall reproduce more,” she tells herself. She smirks and looks up to the other Waling-Waling disdainfully.

When the bees and the butterflies sense the fascinating smell, it lures them to a specific orchid. Off they follow the scent until they spot Vanda. They are all hypnotized by her. All of them whoop down to her and blotch her flowers.

“Wait! Wait!” Vanda shelters herself. The army of bees and butterflies flabbergasts Vanda, pushing their way into her. But the bees and the butterflies are all over Vanda from top to bottom. Vanda drowns. One cannot discern a single sight of Vanda from afar. The image is like a big black ball covered by the bees and the butterflies.

Shaking up, the Waling-Waling community cannot fathom what they see! The orchids can only think of helping Vanda.

“Everyone, let us emit more of our scents to attract the bees and butterflies!” commands the elder Waling-Waling.

The Waling-Waling community simultaneously does as their elder orchid declares. The forest smells like a bathing pond perfumed by an enthralling Waling-Waling scent.

Alas! One by one, the bees and the butterflies, beguiled by the scent of the other Waling-Waling, gradually disentangle themselves from Vanda. The bees and the butterflies are now soothingly spreading themselves to each one orchid as they softly sip their nectars.

Vanda, hurt and smudged, cries to the elder orchid, “I am sorry, elder. I am sorry, everyone. It’s all my fault. All for my greed, selfishness, and jealousy!”

“Life works in balance, child. Whatever is too lacking does no good. Whatever is too much does not make good either. Hush now.” The elder gently taps Vanda’s weak fern-like leaves as she pensively contemplates the sight from afar of an enormous moving monstrous thing excavating the bowels of the mountains and destroying up the middle part of the forest.

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- Total nr. of readings: 160 Copyright © The author [2020] All Rights Reserved. This story may not be reproduced without the express written permission of the author except for personal use.

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