Blind Oracle of Mactan

Fiction by | June 16, 2020

He is the blind oracle at Unchained Melody Massage Parlor.

He specializes in foot rubs. He can stimulate all kinds of glands with pulls and pricks of the tendon and phalanges.

He can, for example, make a person grow taller by pushing on the well of the big toe, which is the pituitary gland reflex point. Everyone knows this.

He can also tell people’s fortunes.

He made his first prophecy on April 26, 1521.

He told Ferdinand Magellan, seated on a cane chair, feet bulbous from scurvy, that he would not succeed if he went to battle in Mactan. Magellan did not listen, did not even tip him. Magellan died the next day at the hands of a local man named after a fish.

He was twenty-one when he made that prophecy.

He has been twenty-one for 496 years. He stopped aging the minute he stopped growing. He also became blind.

He was born in Mactan Island, Philippines, but moves around because of his debts.

He loves gambling, as all oracles do.

He does not give out happy endings. Neither adult nor the fairy tale kind. When he presses his clients’ feet, he sees only tragedies. For his grim prognostications, many people choose not to believe him. Almost always, those who ask him to read their fortunes end up dead.

It is convenient for him, as the dead cannot seek revenge.

Once in a while, his clients are only maimed and will come after him, thinking he’s jinxed them. This is another reason he moves so much.

The American general, Douglas MacArthur, on December 23, 1941, got a foot massage. He opted for the massage-prophecy combination, but did not heed the oracle’s advice. The next year, MacArthur lost the fort of Bataan to the Japanese, who made thousands of Filipino soldiers march to their deaths. Of course, MacArthur fled with his family to Australia, where he famously proclaimed, “I shall return.”

Very few know MacArthur was actually threatening the oracle.

Today, very few even know the oracle exists, or whether he takes reservations in advance. (He does, by phone. He is old-fashioned.)

Today, very few know he is still a virgin. He has bulging muscles, because how couldn’t he, noodling bodies over hundreds of years. Sadly, he can never get it up. He has seen far too many deaths to think of procreation.

Still, he is the ladies’ favorite. Some gentlemen’s too.

He does not discriminate. In fact, he is overly polite. This gets him into trouble, as often it is best to say No when we mean No.

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