I decided to park Curry Laksa Oil some distance away. Curry Laksa Oil is my trusty MyVi, named after her colour. Girl’s been through hell with me.
It was a dodgy parking spot, near the rear exit of a warehouse that smelt like something died in there.
The narrow street looked empty, save for a lorry that was likely manufactured a decade before our country achieved Merdeka.
That’s what you get for venturing into Subang.
I made sure Curry was properly locked. After a moment’s thought, I scribbled a death threat and placed it on my windshield.
“CAR IS CURSED. YOUR ASSHOLE AND KIDNEY WILL SPONTANEOUSLY COMBUST. TOUCH CAR AT OWN RISK.”
I grinned at my handiwork.
My destination was another warehouse a few doors down, a short walk away.
I set off.
Soon, I reached an abandoned warehouse that was in desperate need of a fresh paint job. This one also smelt like something died inside.
I stepped away from the front door and circled to the back.
A row of windows came into sight. Actually, they might have qualified as windows during their glory days. Now, they were merely odd rectangular holes in the wall. For curtains, there were spiderwebs.
I swung one leg after another through a window.
My feet hit the ground inside the warehouse. A cloud of dust flew into the air, momentarily blinding me.
“Achooo!” I shrieked.
The final syllable of my sneeze echoed through the empty warehouse when I heard a low, raspy voice, “Yo, PJ girl. Long time no see.”
I looked up and saw a girl with a shrillex haircut. Complicated ink marked her entire right arm, bold against her dark skin.
“Darsh! Lovely to see you.” I flashed her a toothy smile.
The scowl on Darsh’s face slowly morphed into a smirk. She tapped me on the cheek, then slung one arm around my neck and hugged me close.
“Girls! Look what the cat dragged in!” she shouted.
I felt strong hands grab my ponytail from behind and yank. My head tilted backwards. Next, a tiny hand grabbed my ass.
“It’s really her!” squeaked a high-pitch voice. “Ass feels flatter though. Don’t eat rice anymore?”
I broke free from the grip and turned around. I stared straight into a pair of sepet eyes. The first thing I notice was the glitter that dressed the narrow slits.
A smile tiptoed to the corner of my mouth. I hugged my assaulter tightly. “June!”
“You’re killing me,” she choked. Yet she offered me a few benevolent pats.
“PJ kids eat diamonds. They fancy,” came a confident voice.
I turned towards the voice. Approaching me was a group of approximately 10 girls. I acknowledged the leader, “Ili.”
I put my hands behind me and straightened my back. “Ladies,” I then said with a nod.
Glancing at the assortment of girls before me—different heights, different skin colours, different body types—I added, “You look hot.”
“CP, where the hell you been the past year?”
I was about to offer some wise-ass reply when Ili raised her palm at me.
“Don’t care,” she said as she turned around and headed away. “You know the drill,” she added as she tugged the tips of her headscarf into her T-shirt.
We walked towards the middle of the mostly-empty warehouse. There were random storage boxes strewn around.
Many of these boxes had become homes to rats. The packing straw provided the premium 5-star comfort every rodent craved.
All around me, girls secured their hair into ponytails. A girl with minions nail-stickers bent down to knot up her shoelaces.
June yanked her cut-off tank off her petite frame. Underneath was a black exercise bra with the Jolly Roger in bright pink.
I cracked my neck. Left. Right. A fire lit in me.
Darsh tapped on the screen of her iPhone.
Suddenly, I heard NSYNC blare through speakers. When did we get speakers?
Hey hey, bye bye bye… I’m doing this tonight…
You’re probably gonna start a fight…
I felt a fist contact with my face. She packed quite the punch. The impact pushed me a few steps back.
“Shit!” I cursed as I rubbed my nose with the back of my hand. There was a trace of blood.
I wasted no time and launched at my attacker, a girl in green, pouncing like a cat through the air. I slammed right into her and we landed on the ground.
I sat on her in a crippled side-split; in what could’ve passed as a bizarre sex position. I balled my fist. Left hook. Right hook. Left hook.
“AAAHHHHH!!!!” I screamed.
But then, my first mistake was not steadying myself. My second mistake was not realising mistake no.1. Suddenly, I felt a palm underneath my thigh.
In one swift motion, she flipped me off her body. The momentum sent me backwards and flat on my back.
Girl in green turned away.
Lying supine, I panted slightly.
I barely had time to recollect myself when a stout girl did a summersault over me and landed gracefully in a half squat.
I sat up and was about to give the stout girl a run for her money when June leaped over my seated self and landed right in front of stout girl.
Fine, not my fight. Rule no. 4: only 2 girls to each fight.
I turned around.
Next, I saw that Ili had a girl with pigtails in a headlock. Sweet-looking pigtails girl grinned her teeth.
Two other girls, both with long french braids, were squaring off beyond Ili and pigtails. One had a serious bruise on her cheek…
Right then, a pair of tiny hands grabbed my waist from behind me. “We girls know how to make it hurt,” she whispered into my ears.
“Damn straight,” I agree. My head inched to my right.
“Damn. Straight,” I enunciated.
With lightning speed, I twisted my upper body around…
You just hit me with the truth, now girl you’re more than welcome to, so give me one good reason…
But she was quicker. She locked my arms in a complicated armlock.
Double shit, I was stuck.
I turned my head back in front to curse my luck when suddenly…
“Yo bitches!” screamed a thunderous alto voice from… above us?
Every girl in the warehouse paused, some mid-punch, most with fistfuls of hair.
We looked in the direction of the voice.
To our horror, we saw the stout girl hanging from a ceiling beam at least 30 feet in the air!
She must have scaled a wall column with the broken windows as footholds.
Pleased that she had all our attentions, she declared, “I stared death in the eyes.” She paused for dramatic effect. “He blinked first!”
“SHIT!” I exclaimed. “She’s going to fucking kill herself.”
My arms were free from the armlock now. In fact, we had all abandoned our fights. Instead, we each stood dumbfounded with our jaws dropped.
“Watch,” the stout girls said with an obvious smirk.
And then, to our absolute horror, she RELEASED HER GRIP FROM THE BEAM.
She dropped right down like a brick.
Screams filled the warehouse. One of which was mine.
She landed behind a high stack of boxes.
Every girl in the warehouse sprinted towards her landing spot.
We found her…. smiling widely at us from inside a huge box. The packing straw had broken her fall.
June and two other girls reached into the box and grabbed her arms, generous with their reprimands.
My heart was still thumping from the scare.
At this point, I was simultaneous relieved and pissed.
I glanced around at the other girls to see how they were reacting when I saw…
I saw a figure with long hair—nothing unusual; we mostly had long hair.
But this person was different from us.
The figure stood a few feet behind all of us, watching with an amused expression.
An amused expression on that. Familiar. Face.
I snapped into high alert.
“Jesus!!” I growled.
And something in me snapped. “JESUS!!!” I shouted.
And I leaped.
I leaped at Jesus, pushed his shoulders, and knocked him clean off his feet.
My momentum sent us flying a few feet.
We landed hard on the dusty concrete floor.
He was flat on his back. Squatting over him, I used all my body weight to pin him to the ground.
“She’s dead,” I said. “You let her die.”
Jesus said nothing.
“YOU LET HER DIE,” I repeat, raising my voice this time.
“WHY DID YOU LET HER DIE??” I asked.
“WHYYY??” I asked him again, gripping his shoulders so hard my knuckles turned white.
I was breathing hard.
Tears threatened, but I refused to cry.
“One year ago, you let Mama die,” I said, my voice softer. “Why did you let Mama die?”
Jesus parted his lips to speak. “Kid…” he began.
“Don’t ‘kid’ me!” I screamed.
Jesus raised a nail-pierced hand to calm me down. “Kid…” he tried again.
I slammed my palm against his chest.
“WWWHHHYYY???!!!!” My shrieks echoed through the warehouse. “All those prophecies, all that prayer, all that utter bullshit!”
“I-I…” Jesus said. I kept quiet this time. I wanted him to finish his sentence.
But he didn’t.
All I heard was silence.
“Let me be clear. I don’t care that you let my mother die. I care that you let my father’s wife die,” my voice lowered into a whisper.
“WWWHHHHHHYYYYYYY???????!!!!!!!!!!” I wailed once again.
This time, my hands went up to his neck. I wanted to choke him. If he wasn’t giving me answers, then I was going to choke them out of him.
I put my hands around his neck and gripped.
“CP!” I heard Ili say sharply. “That’s enough. Let him go.”
I ignored her.
I squinted at Jesus’ face and screamed once again, my hands still firmly around his neck. “Tell me why!!!”
Suddenly, I felt sweaty fingers pry my hands off Jesus’ neck. “Let go,” Darsh said as she loosened the grip in my fingers.
“You must let go now, Babe,” she added.
Another pair of hands yanked me off Jesus. “There’s no point, CP,” Ili soothed.
Darsh and Ili forced me off Jesus, but I didn’t stop snarling at him.
Jesus stood up, unhurried. He looked at me sadly. Like how he looked at me in the ICU.
“You let Mama die,” I told him pointedly again.
Wordless, Jesus turned around and walked away.
I wanted to grab him again, but Ili and Darsh held me back.
Darsh side hugged me tightly. “It’s not worth it,” she whispered.
Jesus walked out through the front door of the warehouse. Just before he disappeared outside, he offered me one last sad look.
And then he left.
The badass Ili stroked my hair. “It’s not worth it,” she said gently.
It’s not worth it.
Bye bye bye.