3. The peak of suffering

Tukijo was awakened by the sound of the bell. The bell rang three times, signaling it was time to go home. He glanced at the clock on the wall that read 01.00 pm Western Indonesian Time. The boy was shocked, and immediately got up out of the school health unit to his class.

"Oh no, I have to hurry to the restaurant!" Tukijo muttered. He ran to class without paying any attention to anyone.

After arriving in class, he found his bag and books scattered on the floor. Shoe stamps everywhere. Not only that, the seats and tables are also full of markers, including; POOR CHILDREN ARE BETTER TO DIE, UGLY AND POOR IS BANNED ALIVE, and IDIOT.

Tukijo crouched to tidy up his bag and scattered books. Suddenly, Udin appeared leaning his shoulder in the doorway of the classroom. "Poor fate for you, Tukijo. Haha ...," he mocked. Then, Udin disappeared like a jelangkung¹. He came even though he wasn't invited, then he too just left.

While Tukijo was cleaning his desk, he saw an old Noxia 1202 cellphone in Markonah's desk drawer. Since the cellphone was on with a silent tone, Tukijo took it.

On the cellphone was written the name of the contact 'My Love' was calling. Not long after, Markonah entered the classroom to see Tukijo holding her cell phone. Tukijo was surprised by his sudden presence.

"Sorry, is this your cell phone?" asked Tukijo while showing the cell phone in his hand. "I saw the phone light up in the drawer. So I took it."

"Yes, this is mine," said Markonah, taking the phone.

"Earlier, there was a call from someone," said Tukijo.

Then, Markonah immediately checked her cellphone and smiled. "Thanks Jo, I'm going home first!" She is leaving Tukijo.

Was it her boyfriend calling? Thought Tukijo looking for some clarity.

"Ah, what does that have to do with me?" muttered Tukijo shaking his head. He threw his thoughts away.

After clearing his seat, Tukijo left the classroom towards the parking lot. He took a bicycle and swung it until Mas Agus Restaurant located at Mojing Crossroad next to Sukesi Bakery.

Accidentally, Tukijo saw Markonah enter the bakery with a middle-aged man. He frowned as he muttered, "Markonah? Who is that man?"

"Tukijo! Hurry up! It's getting busy...," shouted Agus (restaurant owner) calling for Tukijo. Instantly Tukijo's thoughts were interrupted by Agus' screams.

"Yes, Big Bro." Tukijo ran into the restaurant and did his work.

"Hey you!" call a woman.

"Yes, Sis?" replied Tukijo approaching the woman.

"I ordered two clawed chicken noodles, wrapped."


A few minutes later.

"This is Sis." Tukijo offered two servings of wrapped chicken claw noodles.

"Thank you!"


05.30 pm West Indonesia Time.

"It's Jo!" Agus gave an envelope. "Here's your paycheck this week."

"Wow! Thank you very much, Big Bro," said Tukijo, smiling broadly, taking the envelope and putting it in his trouser pocket.

"You're welcome," replied Agus. "Eh, by the way why is your face so battered? You don't seem like the type of kid who likes to fight."

"Um, this... just now... fell down the stairs at school," Tukijo stuttered. He would rather lie than make people worry.

"Geez, Tukijo! Be carefuly next time, okey."

"Yes, Big Bro."

"Come home! Your grandmother must be waiting for you."

Unbeknownst to Tukijo, someone was watching him across the street.

Tukijo returned to swinging his ontel bicycle. The distance between Mas Agus Restaurant and his house is about 500 meters, while the distance from Mas Agus Restaurant to his school is about 2 kilometers.

The pain in his body disappeared for a moment, he rode his bicycle while imagining that he wanted to buy good food for his grandmother with her salary.

At a fork in a small alley near his house, Tukijo was confronted by his friends during elementary school.

"Stop!" Ucup snapped.

"Why Ucup?" asked Tukijo stopping his bicycle.

"Hand over the envelope that's in your pants pocket!" interrupted Soib.

"Envelopes? Just a moment." Tukijo reached into his pants. He took out the money and gave only the envelope. "This!"

"Buahahaha." They laugh.

"Idiot!" Soib kicked Tukijo's bicycle.

Tukijo, who was still on the bicycle, fell on the asphalt gravel. His hand was bleeding a little from being crushed under the handlebars.

"Ugh." The boy got up and leaned his bicycle against the tree. He was angry. Then punched Soib in the face with a fist. Soib was knocked back.

Suddenly, Budi grabbed Tukijo's hair forward, and kicked him in the stomach with his knee. Again, Tukijo fell to the asphalt. The wound, which had healed, was now increased by sharp gravel scratches. He fell into a prone position. Ucup stepped on his head, while Soib stepped on his body.

"Aaaaaaaaargh," Tukijo screamed in pain. He fainted, lying on the road.

Then Soib took the money that was in Tukijo's trouser pocket.

"Get it guys!" Soib parsed the amount of money as one hundred and fifty thousand rupiah.

"Excellent!" Ucup and Budi gave a thumbs up. The three of them left Tukijo just like that.

It was getting late, the sun had almost covered his face. However, no one had yet crossed the path where Tukijo had fainted.


1. Jelangkung is a traditional Indonesian game with supernatural rituals. These games are supernatural, generally performed as rituals to summon supernatural entities. The medium used to accommodate spirits or supernatural entities that are summoned in the game Jailangkung is a water scoop, which is generally made of coconut shells dressed in clothes and with a wooden handle. (Source Wikipedia).

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