I woke up to the sound of a vehicle, not quite sure if that was an ambulance or a police car. It might be true that I had not slept for almost two days but the demands of my job made me sensitive to noises, the same noises that never failed to disturb my conscience, if I truly had one.
School was not for me. Or it was, before I lost hope and answered the call of the devil. I was a medical student at a nearby university. I wanted to save lives. I wanted to help others, the same old dream of an aspiring doctor. But I suffered from depression and the presence of a church inside the school did not save me. I would not want to talk about how life got worse each day but it was because of illegal drugs and a lifeless body.
The entire story suddenly changed that one night when I was sitting outside my rented apartment in Sta. Mesa. Gunshots were heard. I did not know what I was thinking during that time but instead of going back inside the room to keep myself safe, I followed the noise and the screams of strangers. I found them. A dead body on the street and two other wounded men trying to escape in one of the alleys leading to nowhere. I followed the survivors and I could hear some police sirens, maybe a minute away from the crime scene. The wounded men eventually found an abandoned makeshift shelter and I, too, made myself at home. They finally noticed me. They pointed their guns at me but I told them that I was a doctor and I would like to help them. One of them was severely bleeding and they got no other choice but to trust me. I told them that they should stay while I go back to my place and get some first aid. First aid was all that I could give.
I ran as fast as I could, avoiding the path of the authorities that had just arrived at the scene. I took my things and hurried to where my patients were. I was able to remove the bullet from the abdomen of the one who took more damage. Luckily, no organs were harmed. As for the other man, all he got was a bullet graze wound.
I took care of them for a day. Maybe I was thinking that by saving two lives, the guilt of taking one would disappear. But of course, it did not. However, the entire experience made me dream again. I may not be a doctor but I could still save lives.
The leader of those men whose lives I saved came looking for them. I did not dare ask about what they do. But I did offer my help. I did not care if they were criminals. I told him that I could work for them as their doctor, if they trust me enough. And so, each time a comrade would fall, I would be summoned. Or if the scene was nearby, I would be on call.
Today, I was told that the team would be doing their usual roving in Tomas Mapua. I did not intend to wake up earlier than usual but I could actually use the spare time to get my supplies. I might be able to save another life, who knows.