“A misunderstood love…?”

In the 1999 hit video game Final Fantasy VIII, there was a scene where all the lead characters learned that they had grown together as kids in an orphanage. Skipping the details of that scene, it resulted in the six of them developing an even stronger bond that surpasses that of normal camaraderie. I guess learning that you were together as kids tend to break down the walls and kind of makes things rosier around your interaction with its other.

Just thought of this as an amazing coincidence. Among all the Final Fantasy games, VIII was my favorite, and that scene was a big reason why. It’s amazing because something very similar happened to me tonight. See, my sister-in-law has this friend, a doctor named Joyce. I would often see her whenever I go to my in-laws house, and we’d say hi to each other without so much as a decent conversation. She was just my sister-in-law’s friend anyway, who’s grown quite close to my wife by association. Okay lang.

Pero this night when she arrived, I saw something in her that I have never seen before. Something uncannily familiar. So I whisphered into my wife’s ear to ask what “Doc’s” maiden last name is. All the while, I was feeling anxious in the event Doc would say “Renato.”

She did say “Renato.” Joyce Renato, or the former Jocelyn Renato, a girl I went to school with back in grade six at St. Mary’s College over at Mother Ignacia, QC.

“Yeah, I was there too.” so said Squall.

I mean, WOW. There we were, just casually regarding each other in all those numerous times we’d meet at my in-laws house, having no idea whatsoever that we were actually together in school over 20 years ago! I don’t know what happened, it’s like a veil had been lifted off and for the first time I had a really good look at her features. “Hey…” I wondered, after which my heart raced when I remembered her name was Joyce. “Could it be…?” That’s when I asked Joy to ask what her maiden name was. What if she said “Renato”???


It was a good kind of BOOM, though. And all of the sudden, what used to be two people who simply regarded each other loosely and casually took over the topic of the night and made everyone laugh in delight for this most pleasant of surprises. I couldn’t help smiling while remembering the subsequent conversation I had with Doc – as I look at her, all I see is that cute, almost chubby girl with glasses, a headband, her books and backgammon board sitting beside an unassuming plantbox beside the walkway that stretched from the elementary building all the way to the Panay Avenue gate. The experience was exciting, bringing me to a giddy fit. And Joy, my wife, kept laughing because all the way home I had this smile on my face that I couldn’t seem to wipe off.

So that’s what Squall, Quistis, Selphie, Zell and Irvine must have felt.

It’s nice to have something to smile about for a change


Disclaimer: The line “A misunderstood love…?” is quoted from FFVIII, on that same scene I described above. Quistis said that to Squall, supposedly to ‘explain away’ her hidden feelings for him. There. (must start putting Disclaimers in my blog posts to about misinterpretations  )

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An incorrigible Gen-X cynic who writes too damn much