No Love Here, But We Can Try: Three Stories

These short stories are included in my zine, No Love Here But We Can Try, which was part of Cebu Zine Fest last August 2019, under Duma Alt.Press.

A real-life conversation that virtually took place.

Excerpt from Alternate Endings

Maybe, ten years later, we’ll bump into each other at the supermarket while I’m choosing the right type of sanitary napkins, and he’s carrying a basket full of baby diapers. We catch up for a while, get our groceries together, and grab coffee afterwards. He tells me about his wife. She’s beautiful, short, cute, quirky and talkative. They listen to the same music and play a ton of video games together. He shows me a photo of his baby boy, Rehgar, exactly what he told me he’d name his son—exactly the name I disapproved of. When it’s my turn to update him, I talk about the next book I’m publishing, the places I’ve traveled to and the undeserving boy I’m dating. Then, in the middle of my talking his phone rings to the call of his wife telling him to come home.

Illustrated by Valerie G. Durias

Deluxe 37

The pillows smelled like weed. The mattress laid on a carpet. The latter might be cleaner.

His head was at the foot of the bed, and mine was next to his legs, making a wholesome 69. He said he’s been single for eight months. Me for six.

“When someone breaks you like that, it’s hard to get back in the game.”

Let him talk more.

“I swear,” he said with a passion, even closing his eyes. “I was so broken. Good thing my friends were there. Weren’t you broken?

“Devastated, sure. But not broken.”

“You get me, right? Where I’m coming from. Committing isn’t my thing. Not yet.”

“Me neither.” I run my fingers on his shin. “It’s a different game now.”

No clit was involved.

Illustrated by Valerie G. Durias


“Do you think that works?” he asks, and we both look at the lamp on his makeshift bedside table.

“What’s that?” I pretend not to know, like how I pretend this will all work out.

A Himalayan rock.

“It’s supposed to help with your sleep.” It was two in the morning. 

Nothing ever works, I wanted to say. “Could be a placebo.”

He pursed his lips, probably thinking of how I scoffed at a docu-series about love half an hour ago. 

He wasn’t thinking about love, for sure. This is not. Nothing close. 

In three hours, it will crumble.

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16 Responses

  1. Lasonia says:

    I love these short stories. Certainly a peek into how so many relationships are nowadays.

  2. at all cost you need to save yourself from toxic relationship you need to love yourself first 101% because if you don’t love yourself enough how the hell in the world can you love somebody else can i get an amen!

  3. Annette says:

    I love your writing. Really great stories!

  4. Sudipa says:

    Wow these short stories are so fascinating

  5. Danielle says:

    Love your short stories. They always have so much emotion in them. Thank you for sharing.

  6. Joanna says:

    Unfortunately there are so many disappointments in life, and most of all come from the people we love and care about. It must be heart breaking to meet your long lost love after years and years, and see that life went on for them.

  7. Olya AMANOVA says:

    I love reading short stories. You made it unique with your engaging style and illustrations. I haven’t seen anything like that before.

  8. Twinspirational says:

    Such a great story.. I enjoyed reading it so much, you have such a talent, great blog..!

  9. Sushmita says:

    I loved the first one! And your stories are written beautifully! Absolutely loved the writing style. Thank you so much for sharing 🙂

  10. Catherine Santiago Jose says:

    Simple, short but beautiful story to read. Such a good story of a modern love that is really happening in the reality.

  11. Bree says:

    These stories are very well written. I always enjoy a good story, especially when I can somewhat relate.

  12. Laura says:

    Thank you for sharing these short stories. I enjoyed reading these x

    Pink frenzy

  13. This is a unique way to peek into relationships. This is not just current, modern. Nope, relationships were always about the connection between or among the souls. Like Yoda would say, There’s only Do or no Do; There’s no Try.

  14. Tom says:

    These were good little reads, thank you for sharing

  15. Art & Home says:

    I love the “In three hours, it will crumble.” Although sometimes 3 hours is generous!

  16. Sounds like interesting stories about modern relationships. It would be interesting to read more.

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