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Saturday, February 13, 2010

a new story from The Diabolical


“I came from one of the dorms, near the university. College boy was found dead in his room. It was locked from the inside. No sign of forced entry. No signs of struggle and no wounds on the body. And since there were no visible means of suicide and no note, my guess is he died of natural causes. We’ll just have to wait for Spunky from the morgue to tell us otherwise.” Guerrero finished the rest of his tale as well as his coffee.

Trese closed her eyes and asked, “Was the body drenched in sweat? Or at the very least, did his forehead and lips have beads of sweat?”

Guerrero thought about it for a second and said, “Why, yes! Yes, it was!”

“And did the air smell sweet? As if you were standing near a lot of fruit?” Trese continued.

“Yes. I thought it was the boy’s cologne or something. Why? You know what killed him?”

“It was a bangungot!” the Kambal raced to answer the question. Trese raised her glass to the Kambal for giving the right answer.


And you might also like to read TRESE: THE USUAL STPOT

and for those interested, here's the traditional description of a bangungot based the research and writing of Maximo D. Ramos:


Geographic origin of myth: Ilocos and Tagalog

The Bangungot (called Batibat by the Ilocanos) is described as a large, dark man or woman who sits on the chests of sleeping persons. Unable to breathe, the victim dies unless medical attention is given. The name comes from the root words “bangon” (to rise) and “ungol” (to groan). As a medical phenomenon, bangungot is exclusive to Asians, primarily Filipinos. All victims are males. Bangungot is not to be confused with sleep paralysis, which is common and harmless.

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