“Daddy, Daddy, tell me a story!”
“Yeah, just like the ones in your books.”
“Hmm...what if I don’t have any more stories to tell?”
“Daddy, everyone calls you Alibaba the Great Storyteller. I’m sure you have lots of stories you haven’t told me yet!”
“Very well, listen carefully. Noong unang panahon…”
“Daddy, what are you saying? I don’t understand a thing!”
“Ah, well you see, in ancient times, there existed many languages, for every race had a language of its own. Alma Torran is the only one that survives until today, but there were many, many more."
"Really, Daddy? But, how'd you find out if you weren't alive back then? Oh, did Uncle Aladdin tell you?"
"Yes he did! Okay, back to our tale. Long ago..."
Long ago, the moon was very sad and lonely. She was no less beautiful than her sisters, the stars, but unlike them, she had not been blessed with even the faintest glow to call her own. She would gaze at the earth, cold and silent, for no one could tell her apart from the vast darkness of space. No one saw. No one knew. She longed for a piece, just a tiny bit, of the sun’s light and warmth, so the world could see her smiling down on them.
Ages passed, and with every year she attempted new and different ways to produce light of her own. At first she asked her sisters if she could borrow some of their radiance. When that failed, she tried to let the glimmer of starglow bounce on her skin, so some of it could be reflected back to earth. It did not work. Nothing worked. It seemed the moon was condemned to an eternity of this fate. Unknown, unseen, unfelt. She was invisible and useless and it broke her heart for all she ever wanted was to be of help to the humans she had learned to love.
One day, after an unusually long heat wave, she found the sun resting at the cave of four winds, looking greatly distressed as if the burden of all the mountains had been placed on his shoulders. Moved by compassion, she went to offer her help.
The sun was facing a dilemma. “I truly want to help the inhabitants of the earth," he confided to her. "But I can only shine one side of the world at a time. If only I could light both sides at once, people would not have to stumble around in the dark of night.”
The sun was generous enough to share his light with the world every day without fail. To think he actually planned to do more! But even someone as strong and dedicated as he was couldn’t possibly handle such a big task on his own.
“Is there anything I can do to help?” she asked him. “Anything at all?”
The sun regarded her carefully. She was beautiful, yet she was not bright. But she had the kindest heart he had ever known. So he shared a piece of his light with her.
The moon accepted this gladly, and everyday they took turns illuminating the planet. For the first time, the moon was very happy. She could not enfold the earth with the warmth the people craved for at daytime, but she was a shelter a night for those who needed the cool to rest.
She and the sun became close friends afterwards. They would meet and talk for a few minutes every day, at sunrise and sunset, when the tips of their sweeping light-holders would touch and spark little rainbow clouds. There were times when the moon would take a break to rest and the sun would visit her. Those were the nights of when the moon became invisible, and they happened once every month. Sometimes they sang; sometimes they danced. Often they would tell stories.
“There was this very beautiful cactus blooming by the oasis.”
“A rebellion broke out again.”
“I saw a boy crying for his sick mother.”
“The farmers gathered a bountiful harvest this year.”
There were sad stories, painful stories, and happy stories. Sometimes the sun’s sweat from working so hard would fall down in the form of afternoon showers. Sometimes the moon’s tears were the evening rain. Sometimes she’d show up before dusk to watch the sun. And sometimes she would linger after dawn. There were times she’d be so excited and drop by to chat with the sun at midday. The people called this an eclipse.
Soon the moon found other ways to help out. When the fishermen complained of a poor catch, she offered to help pull the tides for them. When the farmers needed to keep track of the seasons, she became a calendar so they could number the passing months by the amount of illumination she would give.
The sun was generous and the moon was kind. Together they labored to make the earth a happy place to live in. Day in and day out. In season and out of season. They never tired and they never got bored, for every day was a new story to tell. And the moon grew more and more beautiful with each passing year.
One afternoon, at their daily meeting place, the sun asked her a question.
“Across the galaxy, I can find no better partner than you. Would you mind staying by my side forever?”
“Forever?” she echoed, nearly going blank with shock.
“Yes,” he said without a trace of hesitation. “Forever.”
“Would you tell me stories forever?”
“Yes. I would.”
“Okay. I’ll stay.”
And the moon was never lonely again.
“Grampa Alibabie! Tell me a story! Pleassseee?”
"Alright, listen up! Long ago..."