Saturday, February 27, 2010

Gancho, Friday, February 26th. The Preferred Search Engine, Ladies´Version, Guys´Version

Lost, but searching. Our little novela seems to have lost its way, lost some steam. It keeps going down picturesque side streets, constantly looking for a way to keep us entertained, as new characters are introduced, plots twist and turn, and unlike in the earlier phases of the drama, very little gets resolved. In like manner, our characters are lost, but searching. Searching for answers. Gabi wants to know why she feels Sal’s call so strongly. Estrella wants to know if she’s making the right decision, to marry a 17 year old boy. Paula wants to know what she can do to get Cris to commit, or if he won’t. could there be another guy for her? Lalu wants to know why Arnie won’t return his affection. Ximena wants to know what to do about Rolu. And Moni wants to know whom to believe, her mother, or her true love. They’ve decided to get their answers in the most logical way – a fortune teller, of course! Makes perfect sense to me.

Our lovely ladies (including Lalu) are escaping the local brouhaha by visiting the local bruja, highly recommended by Ximena. On the way out of the vecindad, Estrella discovers she still has Aldo’s cellphone in her purse. Moni offers to hold it, since Estre’s a bit absent-minded these days.

Over at Nieves’ place, with Nieves and Beto as his audience, Mauricio lets loose a few bombs (not the Beto kind). First of all, he told Moni everything – that her mother was alive, and that he helped fake Isabel’s death. Coni had taken Moni to see Isabel, with the aim of destroying Moni’s life if she learned her mother faked her death, and hated her. But Isabel (who’s now staying at Mau’s warehouse) turned the tables, and convinced Moni that she always loved her, and still does. Later, when Mau said Isabel was lying, Moni didn’t believe him, and now she doesn’t believe anything Mau says. She doesn’t even want to see him. Beto thinks it’s all Coni’s fault, all part of her plan of vengeance. Nieves gets fire in her eyes – take me to see Isabel, right now.

Luisa is standing between Ivan and Andrés. She tearfully explains that ever since Ivan left the house, she felt alone, especially when Katia left. She needed a friend, hoped Andrés would fit the bill. She’s sorry to both the guys that she didn’t make things clear, but the truth is, she just wants to be friends with Andrés, and she wants to be Ivan’s girlfriend again – if he’ll give her another chance. He does, they hug, and Andrés accepts the news like a gentleman. After he leaves, Ivan promises to visit Luisa every day at the school. She tells him she’ll be waiting. They kiss, and he’s off. Dani comes in, “told you so, all you had to do was say you were sorry”. Luisa hugs our little matchmaker.

It’s a dark night, and the ladies have arrived at the bruja’s casa. Are you sure this is the place? they ask Xime. Of course. Madame Bartola said just follow your instinct, the house would call to you. She also gave me the address. Everybody thinks the house is very mysterious, except skeptical, down to earth Moni. The rest are very excited about getting answers to their various problems. But where’s the doorbell? Xime notices a long chain, and gives it a tug. An ominous bell tolls, and a very tall, pale-faced gentlemen appears behind them. As they all scream, he intones “Do you seek Bartola?” in a deep voice. The ladies cower (except Moni, who goes into her boxing stance).

Mau has brought Nieves and Beto to the warehouse to confront Isabel (with “800 truths” says Nieves), but no one’s there. Nieves is mad as a bull, bursting with the desire to put Isabel in her place. Mau calmly surmises that Isabel went back to Coni’s apartment to get her things. But why is she staying here? wonders Nieves. Well, says Mau, Valentina brought her here, and actually it’s good, because we can keep better track of her this way. Nieves notices two empty coffee cups, is mad that Isabel doesn’t even clean up, but Mau points out that means Alicia is with Isabel. Nieves, still pacing wildly, besides her self with anger, says Alicia is so weak, who knows what ideas Isabel will put in her mind?

The tall majordomo (I’ll call him Igor) tells the gals “Silence!”,

and leads them into the foreboding mansion. They’re barely surpressing giggles, though, this is fun! But when Igor says he’s brought milk to drink for dinner with his horns (cuernos), they get a little freaked out.

Nieves tells Mau (whom she calls guapo, causing Beto to warn her not to get so heated up) not to worry, little by little, Monita will realize that they’re all telling the truth, and Isabel isn’t. They agree to stay close to Moni, and close to each other. Mau lets out his second bomb. Valentina was not the product of a rape. The father of La Monita is….Marcos Lerdo de Tejada!

Isabel and Alicia arrive at Coni’s apartment, so Hissy can get her suitcases. Without going into the details, let’s just say that at first Alicia is very suspicious, and asks lots of good questions. But Hissy is the mistress of mentiras, and Alicia is weakening.

Now Nieves is REALLY mad. Not only did Isabel prevent Nieves from marrying Marcos, she was his lover, and had his child! Nieves wants to KILL her, grabs a pillow, and slams it over and over against the bed. Damn, disgraceful, betraying, hypocrite, I’ll kill you! Beto rushes over to calm her down, she tells him to shut up, then kicks him in the family jewels! As he winces in agony,

she realizes what she did, offers to massage or rub him (sobar), to which he quickly squeaks out “no me sobes, no me toques”). Mau intervenes, and Nieves needs to hug him. She also apparently needs to grab his pompis, which she does with mucho gusto.

Inside the dark blue, gothic room filled with strange statues, many candles are lit, as the seeking sisters await the arrival of the mysterious madam. An owl hoots in the corner.

Paula notices a curtain, could that be the portal to the Other Side? (la más allá, one might also say the Great Beyond, as más allá means beyond) Xime points out that for those on the Other Side, WE are on the Other Side. They notice that Moni’s a little sullen. Paula and Estrella pull her aside, what gives? My Mamá is not dead, she’s alive! The owl hoots and flaps its wings. Estre says Moni’s giving her goosebumps (me dejaste la piel gallina, last week Xime said la piel chinita for the same thing). It’s true, replies Moni, Mauricio helped my Mamá fake her death.

Among Hissy’s lies, she says Marcos always knew about Moni, and he’s the one who forced her to abandon Moni years ago. She also says Marcos contacted Mauricio months ago, and they’ve been plotting together. I think she also says Marcos made Mau go along with the faked death of Isa, and the two of them are still plotting against Isa. She asks Alicia how could anyone believe she’d hate her own daughter, how crazy is that? She pours on the waterworks. Don’t leave me alone, Alicia. Tell me you’ll help. Alicia gives in. I promise you, Isabel, that together, we’ll protect Valentina from her father.

The clock strikes midnight, and Igor appears. Please turn off all cellphones and other electronic devices, as they could interfere with the signals from the other side. Grab hands, La Bruja Bartola is about to arrive.

Everyone stand, please. And here she is, a middle-aged woman with a crazed look, suitably garbed in a long gray robe trimmed in silver, a feathered turban, and scads of gaudy necklaces and bracelets. She also has WAY too much lipstick.

She walks through the fog, and starts coughing. She starts criticizing “Gastón”, telling him the smoke doesn’t work, it’s choking her. Don’t you remember you died from asphyxiation? Who’s she talking to? asks Estre. Gastón, replies Igor. The spirit who always accompanies her. Everyone says good evening to Gastón, but Bartola says how silly of you, Gastón’s not on my left, he’s on my right. They greet the imaginary friend again.

Gabi asks Gastón to let her talk to Salvador, but Bartola says Gastón doesn’t do that, only she does. Who wants to pass first? It’s Gabi, but before she follows Bartola, the bruja looks at Moni, her body goes rigid, she points her finger, and says You. You have a dark aura. She then beckons Gabi to follow her to the other side (of the curtain). Be seated, bellows Igor. Lalu thinks Gastón may be gay, but Igor commands them to be silent.

Nieves is still mad. Now she’s not only mad at Isabel, but at Marcos. How dare he say he still loves me. Mauricio says he thinks Marcos is not a bad guy. No way, says Nieves, he’s a PIG, like all men! Beto looks at her, hello? Oh sorry, she replies, except you two. Beto also doesn’t trust Marcos. First he was Coni´s Dad, then we thought he was Beto´s Dad, now he´s Moni´s, who´s next, Estrella, Paula? When Mau defends him again, Nieves gets up, gets into HER boxing stance, she wants to go three rounds with him, at maximum weight! All of a sudden she feels faint, starts hyperventilating. She says she’s okay, but Mauricio says she looks pale, would she like to lie down? Her face lights up. With you? she asks hopefully. Beto tells her it’s time to go home. As he starts for the door, Nieves falls into Mau’s arms again, and can you believe it, as they support her out the door, her hands wander again, down, down, down, trying to squeeze the Charmin.

We have a short scene where Luisa tells Aldo she reconciled with Ivan. Aldo agrees it’s good to fight for love, not give up. Luisa thinks he looks worried about something, but he denies it. After she leaves, though, he replays Oscar’s warning in his mind – keep your mouth shut about Lorenza and the cabaña (Oscar’s haunted house).

Madame Bartola tells Gastón to leave the lady (Gabi) in peace. So what are you seeking, my dear? As Bartola sits wide-eyed, elbows down, hands on the side of her face,

Gabi relates how even though Salvador died, she still feels his presence. She tells how Sal died violently, in an airplane crash, but she suspects someone was behind it. Bartola gets possessed, starts half singing, half talking to Gastón. She shrieks a bit more, decides she needs something that belonged to Salvador. Gabi has something, Sal’s wig. Bartola starts channeling. A wooded (boscoso) place. A cabaña, there’s a man locked in his body, screaming without being heard, he can’t talk, he’s trapped in his mind, he’s ALIVE! (this gal’s good).

Cut to a wooded place, a cabaña, and Lorenza is trying to get Sal to talk. C’mon mi amor, repeat after me. Lor-en-za. But it’s not working. The nurse enters to administer the injection, but Lori says no, stop drugging him up. Oscar and Jero arrive, and Oscar reminds Lori than if Sal didn’t have his meds, he’d leave, don’t you want him to stay here? Yes, she says, but not like a wax statute (una figura de cera). Oscar prevails, and Lori and the nurse escort Sal to his room for rest (and the shot). Once they leave, the Count von Count and Jerry the Jester discuss the Aldo situation. Although Oscar thinks the boy won’t talk, Jerry thinks something could slip with Estrella and Moni. So Oscar decides to call him, and lay down the law.

Ringggg! Gee, didn’t our girls turn off their cellphones and other electronic devices? Wait a minute, it’s Aldo’s phone, which Moni has conveniently clipped to the inside of her blouse (she didn’t notice it for a bit, guess it wasn’t on vibrate, you’d think she’d want to keep abreast of the situation). She decides to take the call in the hall, so as not to upset Igor. She whispers hello, and is shocked to hear “Hello, it’s Oscar. Are you alone, Aldo? We have to talk.” Moni snaps the phone shut. Whoa!

Meanwhile, we have another group of lost souls in the vecindad. Beto’s sad that his Mom is mad at men. Don Cesar wants to go to her, until Beto says Cesar’s one of those men. Cris is down that Paula broke up with him. Beto laments that Coni dumped him, too. And Mau’s in Moni’s doghouse. The solution – how ‘bout a few cold ones down at the cantina? Cesar thinks that’s not the way out (salida). But he corrects himself, it could be the way in (entrada) – to forgetting everything. Cris is off duty, just has to change, and he’s in, too. Mau demurs at first, but Beto convinces him. So our message is clear. If you’re lost and down, ladies, go to a bruja. Guys, go get a brew, Hah!

Outside of Bartola’s, Estre and Moni discuss why Oscar would call Aldo’s phone. They know Oscar is bad (Gabi keeps suggesting he’s involved with Sal), but what could Aldo have to do with him? Estre checks the phone, and sure enough, Aldo has Oscar Cárdenas saved in his contacts. Moni decides that the only way to get to the bottom of this is to call Oscar back. As Estrella looks on nervously, Moni dials the number.

Meanwhile, Nieves has grabbed her unicorn purse, and is sneaking out, she wants to talk to Marcos. She heads out of the vecindad. But just outside,
Alicia is walking with Isabel, telling her it was smart to change her mind, and not stay with Mauricio. She’ll be much safer with Valentina. They approach the gate, and Nieves is there, looking very serious. She puts her hand on her hip, saying, “What a small world it is. Right, Isabel?” Isabel’s glare could melt a statue,

but Nieves’s eyes blaze like a thousand nuclear suns.


Previews: Ximena urges Moni to think, and boys will be boys.

Vocabulario: Not much, as my captions were muy mal. However, we do have:

Sobar – to rub, or massage
Me dejaste la piel gallina
– you gave me goosebumps, literally you gave me chicken skin, last week we had la piel chinita, or little pebble skin

Boscoso – wooded
Una figura de cera
– a wax statue, wax figure

– annoying. Our characters are always saying no seas gacha. Guess what, when I googled this, it came up with one of JudyB’s recaps, where she translated it as “don’t be snotty”. Thanks, Judy!


Corazón Salvaje (2009) 2/26/10 - The Devil You Say!

Capítulos 5 & 6

As Viewerville grabs a box of Kleenex for tonight's tear-jerker, we JIP (join in progress) a 3 hanky redux of Juan de Dios Sr. explaining to Juan de Dios Jr. that he is his long lost son now found. JD Jr. realizes that JD Sr. is the "ghost" that's been spying on him and Remiglio all these years. Sr. begs Jr. to believe him and his story. He swears on the memory of his dead mother that he loves his son more than his own life, and that the two of them will never be apart again. In true novela style, Jr. is unable to deny the "call of the blood". He accepts his father's sad story and his undying love for him as gospel. The two bond. (In all of Viewerville there is not a dry eye to be found.)

At the morosely sober Montes de Oca manse, Leonarda and Rodrigo are making a show of mourning his late wife's recent death as the priest comes to ask "Leona" (as in Helmsley) to become the motherless twins' godmother. She promises to do so, but only if Rod promises never to marry another woman unless she is truly worthy of being the mother of his two little girls. (Rod and the rest of us all know who that will be, now don't we?) He appears appropriately pained to have to swear to this and thinks it over in about a second or two. He agrees to Leona's condition. (Viewerville suspects ol' Rod would rather lay a little more pipe anyway and is really just happy to be out from under.)

That same night across town, JD Sr. takes Jr. to see his mother's grave. He tells his son what a beautiful lady she was and what a wonder it was that she gave her love to him, a humble fisherman, without asking anything in return. Whenever Jr. looks up into the sky at night, he says, the brightest star in the sky will be his mother looking down on him with love. (My hanky runneth over.)

Rosie, of course, unbeknownst to the two of them, is very much alive (if you can call that living). She's still ranting about wanting to see her son. Arcadio, poor shlub, is tired of listening to this for the millionth and one time. He screams at her through the passage way that the man's dead already! He comes to the cell and hisses angrily at her that both the kid and the man she was going to marry died years ago. Rosie just screams louder. Her son IS alive! "Alive!!!! Juan de Diooooooos!!!" (Viewerville is ready to give Arcadio his due because whatever Leona has been paying him all these years, it ain't nearly enough.....)

The next morning Rod tells Leona that he's leaving because he can't stand it there anymore. He needs to be far away from the memory of "his Constanza." Leona is stung with jealousy, and with tears in her eyes, she asks when he'll be back. Rod replies curtly that he doesn't know. She starts towards him to tell him she'll be waiting for him, but he snubs her and walks out the door without even a word--not for her nor for his two little baby girls. (They're her problem now.) Clemencia stands at attention while Leona shamelessly cries out after him that she'll be waiting for him forever and ever.

Down by the seaside now, from a distance, hidden in his old boat, JD Sr. points out to his son his three life-long friends: Mabel, Pedro and Santos. He tells Jr. that he can always trust those three. Suddenly a soldier accosts Sr. and then recognizes him. The soldier yells out his name. Sr. turns around and knocks the guy down and then slugs him a couple times before racing after Jr. and fleeing in their rickety little sailboat. JD Sr.'s three friends realize that he must not have died after all and the boy with him must be his son. They and the rest of the crowd on the shore cause a ruckus long enough for the two to escape.

Back at the Montes manse, meanwhile, Santiago Aldama pays a surprise visit to Noel and explains that he arrived the night before. In addition to seeing how their joint business venture was profiting, he was hoping to finally get a chance to meet Sr. Montes de Oca. Noel tells him that since misfortunes always come in bunches, Sr. Montes de Oca left early that morning for Europe after suffering through a recent number of them. Noel asks what else he might be there for. Santiago says he's there to fetch something that's always been denied him.

That something--or rather, someone-- is Mabel who is looking out at the sea, remembering Juan de Dios Sr. from the good ol' days, thinking that for sure that boy with him had to be his son. Suddenly Santiago appears in front of her there in the hut. He's come back. She tells him she has a long tale to tell him. He wonders if it has something to do with her.

That night another storm rolls in over the ocean. JD Sr. and Jr. make their way to an old hut on "The Devil's Rock" [Peñón del Diablo]. Sr. tells his son that they call it that because of all the terrible stories and legends that are told about it. This becomes their new home. Sr. is sick and coughing again and this scares Jr. He worries that his father will die and leave him alone once more. Sr. promises he won't, especially now that he's found him.

Years later..........

Leona watches Renato and the twins playing on the grounds. She says to herself it's a shame, but God took poor Constanza for a reason: no better mother than she, Leona, for Connie's kids, and of course, it gives her (be still my heart) another chance at Rod. Her fantasizing is cut short, however, with news that Arcadio, the administrator for the Finca del Mar, is there needing to see her. She rages at him for disobeying her orders not to show up at the estate in Veracruz unless there's an emergency. Arca the Orca (the guy reminds me of a whale --and enough about orcas really being huge dolphins....) tells her there is an emergency. What she's paying him won't do it for him any longer. The price he's charging to keep mum about the maniacal M de R is lovely Leona herself. He makes a move on her but Leona slips past him. "How dare you!!" He explains that it's darned lonely there. (Hubby makes a snide remark about the cat. I give him the evil eye.) He wants a woman. He wants Leona. Leona stutters. Orca says he's arranged it so that she can stay at the finca for a few days --and she'd better or else, cuz if not she'll be real sorry! "Understood?" He starts out the door. She's still stuttering.

Orca runs into Noel who's outside the door and about to enter. Orca assumes the slavish position, then leaves. Noel, suspicious, asks what that man was doing there. Leona lies about sending for him to ready the finca for her and the kids to spend a few days there. Naive Noel says that's not a bad idea, though it's a bit strange coming from her. When is she going? She says she's thinking of leaving that same afternoon. Noel's a bit disappointed that she won't be with him at the dinner being given in honor of the new governor. Ah well, it can't be helped. She's got to get things ready and go.

Meanwhile, JD Sr. is writing a letter for his son to take to Veracruz. He's to hand it over personally and once he's finished it he'll tell his son who he must give it to.

That night, the narrator's voice waxes poetic about another storm howling outside [rugir= howl] in the black of night, over the restless sea (or something like that). Their rickety boat bounces up and down in the wild waves, but JD Jr. "is becoming a man." (I guess that means he's up for the challenge.)

Back at the manse, Noel and Santiago get ready to batch it together at the Governor's Ball. The buggy [calesa] is waiting outside to take them. Just as they're about to leave, a soaking wet and raggedy JD Jr. rushes into the room and demands to see Rodrigo Montes de Oca. Noel explains it's his house, but he's not there to be found.

At the same time, Leonarda is arriving at the finca. Orca is there and ready for his roll in the royal sheets, but she has other ideas. She says she's brought him something he'll value much more than her, and then hands him a huge gold rope necklace. He grabs it and frowns. He then grabs her and says what he wanted was her! She tries to fight him off.

Back in Veracruz, Juan de Dios Jr. still wants to hand over the letter to Noel. Santiago asks him who it's from. JD Jr. replies excitedly that it's from someone from the past who was a victim of a great injustice and who is about to die: Juan de Dios San Román!! Both Santiago and Noel are saucer-eyed impactado.

We beam back to the finca, now, where Leonarda yells at Orca to stop it already! (Methinks she doth protest less and less.) Leona pulls away and instructs him that while she's there, Rosie is to be locked up in her cell and kept quiet because Hubby Noel is, she lies, due there shortly. Orca grumbles that her husband is an arrogant nincompoop and a laughing stock. [fantoche, pelele] "He's a useless good-for-nothing!" Leona doesn't disagree. She just sniffs, accepting the insults as the gawdawful truth.

Meanwhile, Noel refuses to acknowledge that he knows a Juan de Dios San Roman and tells Jr. to leave him alone because he's in a hurry and is leaving. JD Jr. races out to the coach after him, screaming for Noel to take the letter and read it because his daddy is dying.

Back on his death mat, poor, dying JD Sr. is worried that it's taking so long he may die before Jr. gets back. He doesn't want to die before seeing him one last time.

During supper at the finca, Leonarda, in hopes of keeping them from finding Rosie, tells the children about the supposed ghost of a suffering soul in their spider-filled basement cellar who is rumored to be a woman that has been heard to sometimes cry out for her child. She tells them they are not allowed down there and anyway, it'd be darned scary if they met up with any ghosts. (Good try, Leona, honey, but anyone with half a brain knows kids always do what you've told them not to.)

Finally Noel takes the letter from JD Jr., but he refuses to read it till Santiago shames him into it. "Aren't you going to read the letter? Surely it's something important. When a boy dares to come from Devil's Rock on a night like this you ought to probably read it and go to see Juan de Dios San Roman. It would be a sin not to attend [acudir] to a summoning from a dying man!" [moribundo]

Jr. arrives back at the hut just in time. His father tells him he thought he'd die without a chance to say good-bye. (Ok. Ok. I admit to needing a 4th hanky for this scene.) Sr. asks where Rodrigo is. Jr. says neither he nor Leona were there in Veracruz. He was only able to talk to her husband. Yes, he gave him the letter, but the man said he didn't know any Juan de Dios San Roman! Sr. coughs through his few remaining breaths. "What a waste. I can't believe it! I always thought that Noel Vidal was a good man!" JD Jr. begins to cry again at the thought of losing his father and being left alone. Sr. says he'll be with his mother in heaven looking down at him and they will always be there to care for him. He gives his son his leather chain with the shark's tooth, then tells him that he must keep it with him always to remind him that he is a strong man; that nobody and nothing can defeat him ever! It comes with his blessing. Sr. tells Jr. not to forget that all their suffering was caused by the Montes de Oca. "I swear to you the truth can be hidden, but it can never be extinguished!" He has Jr. swear to him that he will avenge his mother and will search out Rodrigo Montes de Oca. He must succeed in clearing the good name of San Roman. "Swear to me! Swear to me! Farewell! Farewell! God give you life my son." Lightening flashes and Juan Sr. breathes his last.

JD buries his father in the pouring rain. He's filled with anger and a thirst for vengeance. He swears that from then on he is no longer Juan de Dios. He is now Juan del Diablo!

Meanwhile, that same night, Leona has Clemencia help her get ready for bed. Leona crows about Rod's twins and Renato being the only heirs to the Montes de Oca fortune. Clemencia adds there would have been four to inherit if her Rosie's boy hadn't died. Leona gets mad at her for bringing him up and insists it's not her fault the kid died. She threatens Clemencia with her fist and tells her never to mention the boy to her again. Anyway, he died a long time ago and the dead never come back to life. They stay dead. (Guess she's in for one mell of a hell of a big surprise!)

Noel finds the hut on Devil's Rock. JD comes in and tells him he's too late. He just finished burying his father. Noel confirms that the boy is also named Juan de Dios and that JD San Roman was his father. Noel puts 2 and 2 together and in a telenovela first actually gets 4! He realizes this is Maria de Rosario's son. JD says yes, and he does know her whole sad story. Noel wants JD to come back with him. He belongs with his mother's family, he says. JD refuses to leave the hut till Noel makes a deal with him. JD will return with him to the finca, but once he's there, if JD decides he doesn't want to stay there then he'll be free to come back to the hut. However, says Noel, JD should remember that he is a Montes de Oca, and that he has a right to live there and take his rightful place with his mother's family.

Leona gets into bed. Clemencia is complaining that the only one who knows for real what happened to that boy is Celestino and he's unreliable drunk. Leona gripes that he's getting sicker by the day and is probably going to die soon. No good even thinking about him, let alone pestering him or her with anymore silly questions. Clemencia puts out the candles and leaves. Alone in the dark now, Leona mumbles to herself that the child died by himself and she refuses to take any blame for it.

Noel finally reads the letter on the trip back to the finca. It is addressed to Rod and says that the boy is Maria de Rosario's son, and that JD Sr. is asking Rod to protect his son in memory of the only woman Rod has loved, because she will be thanking him from heaven if he does. This way he, a dying man, will forgive Rod for the wrongs he committed. He insists that as a Montes de Oca the family has the obligation to look after JD because now he has no one else left. After reading the letter Noel is determined to convince JD that he has the right to live with his family and a right to enjoy what is his: his mother's fortune, his inheritance.

The next day Remiglio and his mother are reminniscing about JD. They have lost count of the years since her husband sold him off. Talk changes to their no longer being able to keep up with the cost of things. Remi needs to find a real job or to learn a trade. The cookie concession isn't bringing in what it used to. FF>>

Over at Celestino's, the poor guy is spitting up the crap that his daughter is trying to feed him. Apparently she never learned how to cook and now it is painfully evident. Father and daughter argue about her only staying around and taking care of him because she's hoping to learn the secret of the Montes de Oca so she can extort them, but Celstino's going to his grave (and in not too long a time, apparently) with it. He hasn't said a word to them about what he knows and won't as long as the patrones continue to support him, especially now that he's too ill to work. The nasty hija complains that he's just a lazy slob and always has been. She blames him for her mother abandoning them. He gripes about what a piece of trash her mother was and says that he's glad she's long gone. He adds that the nasty hija would be long gone too, except for The Secret. Nasty Hija screams at Celestino that he's right she'd be long gone cuz she's sick of this place and this kind of life. If it weren't for .... but she stops before she comes out with it. Nasty Hija walks aways and thinks to herself that she'd have hightailed it out long ago if it weren't for her heart-throb, Renato.

Meanwhile, the aforementioned heart-throb, Renato, and his cousins are playing hide and seek together out in the fields. Well, he and Regina get along just great. Ayme is the mischievous and willful one. He scolds Ayme for climbing trees instead of being more like her well-behaved sister. Ayme does not like having the exemplar behavior of her sister thrown in her face all the time and says as much. FF>>

Inside the main house, the Orca uses locking up Rosie in her cell as an excuse to visit Leona. She sneers and reminds him what will happen to the two of them if anyone finds out about Rosie. He lunges lustfully at Leona again. She fights him off again, but this time she gives him a little ray of hope. "You should learn to be more patient. One of these days I might give in and perhaps become yours, but you have to be patient, very patient." She changes the subject to improving the harvest of sugar cane and cocoa. He makes another play for her. She pushes him off. He says he plans to hire more workers. She says fine, as long as he pays them little in actual cash. FF>>

Remiglio now approaches the children and tries to sell them a few sweets out of his basket. He says he really needs the money. Regi is all for having Renato buy her one, but Renato doesn't think it would be proper. Up walks Ayme, reminding them that her "Madrina", Leona, will not like it one bit because she abhors food sold on the streets. Regi can be snippy, too, and she tells her sister that she thinks, as they tell them all in Mass, it's the charitable thing to do. Remi offers Regi one for her to sample. Just as she's about to take a bite, though, Leona walks up and knocks it out of her hands. "What a bad example you're setting!" She glares at Remi and then at Regina. "It's obvious you've inherited something of your mother!" Regi objects and is sent back to the house as punishment for being rebellious and stubborn. Leona says she will teach her manners whether she likes it or not! She takes the other two children for their walk. "We'll ignore this and not let it spoil our day!"

Remi is left cleaning up the mess as Arcadio walks up to offer him a job in the fields. Remi accepts and asks if his brothers could have a job too. Arcadio says he'll let them try out also. He won't pay them at first, only after, if they prove themselves. (What ever happened to the idea of an honest day's pay for an honest day's work?) Remi has no choice but to accept those terms.

That night Ayme talks her sister into checking out the tunnels in the basement with her to see if there really is a ghost like they say. At the same time Rosie, in a moment of semi-lucidity, decides to steal the keys from her mute guardian, Mirta, who is asleep on the floor. Rosie unlocks the door and sneaks out, remembering to take the candle to light her way. (Anybody else worrying here about that stupid veil catching fire?) The girls continue through the passageway and stop short when they see Rosie's shadow appear from the other end around the corner.

Upstairs Renato, followed by Clemencia, runs in to tell his mother that Noel's carriage is driving up. It's late and unexpected. They all go to greet him. Noel gets hugs from Renato but Leona stands off to the side and simply says she's surprised by his arrival. She has a fright and suddenly asks if it's because of some bad news about Rodrigo! Noel scowls at her. "Nobody's heard a thing from Rodrigo. He's still wandering somewhere in Europe. The important news is that I've brought a guest home." He calls to JD who races into the room, filthy and ragged, with a wild and savage look in his eyes. Renato is elated (finally some real excitement around the place), but Leona's scowl is not to be missed. Noel's just put one over on her and she ain't happy.


Capítulo 6
I Guess The Devil Is In The Loose Ends

Renato is elated to finally have a pal --any male his own age-- to hang out with. Noel is delighted that his son has immediately understood his intentions. He waxes wordy about having a friend, a companion, a --Leonarda gets her first glimpse of JD Jr. and shuts Noel up in a Nueva Jork minute. "Enough, already! Stop talking nonsense!" Renato asks his name. Noel says his name is Juan. "They just call him Juan. [a secas = for short, or, just that] He's an orphan and homeless [desamparado = abandoned, homeless]. I expect you to be charitable."

Meanwhile, the twins have just seen Rosie's ghostly shadow cast against the opposite wall in the underground passage way. They are frightened out of their wits and race away.

Upstairs, JD has gotten cleaned up and now has on a suit. He can't believe what he sees in the mirror. Renato asks if he's never seen himself in a mirror before. JD says never one so big. It's like a slice of calm water, he says and he marvels at its smoothness. Renato wants to head back to the living room to be with his parents, but JD doesn't think his mother will approve. Renato defends her saying she's a very kind person and will accept him in no time.

Downstairs, said woman of generous spirit is bitching out her husband for bringing a savage, neanderthal-looking ragamuffin into her house. She wants to know who he is and why he's there. Noel says for now it's enough to know that he's the son of a man he treated badly in the past and wants to make amends. She wants a better explanation than that. He says the man died in the most impoverished of circumstances is all. He could have done something but didn't. This makes the doubting Leonarda suspicious. She thinks the boy is one of Noel's bastards from some illicit affair of his. He's no doubt brought him there to punish her for denying him his conjugal rights as her husband. Noel says it isn't that at all. The boy isn't his and he's been faithful to her despite the way she carries on in their marriage. Leona is furious and refuses to believe him. She wants the truth and she wants it now! Noel says he wonders if she can handle the truth. Leona says try her. Noel loses his patience and screams at her that the boy is the son of Juan de Dios San Roman! Leona is knocked-back-on-her-high-heels-impactada.

While mad Maria de Rosario wanders aimlessly through the passageways below the house, Noel tells Leonarda that JD SR never died and neither did the boy. San Roman himself says so in the letter he wrote to Rodrigo. Leona grabs the letter from him and begins to read it for herself. Down below, Mirta the Mute brings Rosie back to her cell. Raving Rosie has found a bag of her old clothes, including her wedding dress. She begins to rave about about needing Mirta's help getting dressed for her wedding with JD SR. "He's coming now! He's coming!"

Leona whines and says there's no way they can take in her sister's bastard. Noel insists that though it might infuriate her, the boy is a Montes de Oca and he ought to be where he belongs, with them. He goes upstairs. Leona tells herself that absolutely no one must see him there. She heads into the kitchen as Ayme is telling Clemencia that they saw the ghost. Leona scolds her for disobeying and Ayme blames it all on Regina. "Regi forced me to go with her!" Regi insists that it was Ayme's idea. Leona first wants to know what they saw. The twins say they only saw shadows and then heard a woman crying out for her son. Leona sends them up to their room as punishment. Regi objects. Astute Ayme knows enough to say yes, ma'am. Leona comes over and spoils her rotten. She caresses Ayme's cheek and says it hurts her to have to punish her for simply going along with her sister's crazy ideas. The favoritism isn't lost on either Regi or Clemencia.

Once Clemencia leaves to take the children up to their room, Leona tells herself that she's got to find a way to get rid of her sister's son as soon as possible and before anybody sees him there, especially Clemencia.

Upstairs, Noel joins the boys. "How do you like your new friend?" Renato is overjoyed to have a pal to learn to row and to hunt with. (You'd think his daddy had just brought home a pet.) Leona walks in as Renato says he's going to introduce him to his two cousins. She says that will be impossible because they've been sent to bed for disobeying her. She tells Renato to go to bed now too and orders Arca the Orca to get a space in the storeroom ready for JD to sleep in. Noel objects and says he'll sleep in the house with them or she can face the consequences.

Clemencia is chatting with the little girls about what happened. Regi tells Ayme to 'fess up that it was her idea. Clemencia tells them they shouldn't have done what they did, though she understands their curiosity. She suggests that Regi should learn from her sister how not to anger their madrina, Leonarda. Regi says if Ayme does what their madrina asks it's only because it's convenient.

Across the hall, Leonarda is angrier than ever before and she can no longer control herself. She tells Noel the truth about why she married him. She says he hates it that she never let him touch her again. She wouldn't because she's never loved him. Noel says it's been obvious for a long while that she didn't, but he never understood why she married him. She says she only married him out of spite because she couldn't have the man she really wanted. That man wouldn't even give her a second look. All she feels for Noel is repugnance. Noel loses it and grabs her arm. He screams at her how could she dare??? Renato hears the fracas and rushes in to protect his mother. He warns his father off her and tells him never to hurt her again. Noel and Leona stare daggers at each other. "Now you've taken everything from me, even the love of our son. One day you will regret it, Leonarda. One day..." He turns and races out of the room.

Leona hugs her son and plays it for all she's worth. "Oh, my son! I'm so proud of you for having defended me! Now I know that you will always defend me, always." She hugs him again and smiles evily to herself.

Outside thunder crashes and the lightening strikes. It's raining cats and dogs again. Noel angrily gallops away on his horse in the dark. The horse stumbles in the mud and throws Noel. Noel hits his head and falls unconscious.

Leonarda, meanwhile, decides to pay her sister a nasty visit in the catacombs. Rosie doesn't recognize her at first. Leona complains that she really shouldn't bother coming down to see her. The only reason she does is to see her suffer and to writhe in agony [retorcer de dolor.] She taunts and tortures Rosie by telling her that her son is really alive, but that she will never see him because this time she is going to make sure that he disappears from their lives forever. Why? Because she will never share the Montes de Oca fortune with anyone else. Nobody!

Leonarda leaves Rosie screaming and begging to be let out to see her son.

Back upstairs in her room, Leonarda hopes that Noel has left and gone for good.

No such luck. The next morning the hired hands have found Noel out in the countryside, still unconscious from his fall the night before and brought him back. Orca says they've sent for the doctor. He's not dead yet, but close to it. JD races over and yells hysterically for someone to help him get Noel off his horse. Leona rushes up to him and chases him away. "How dare you touch my husband. Leave this house forever and never come back! I don't want you here!" Orca tells her this isn't the time to argue as they drag Noel off and carry him to the house. Regi watches it all from the balcony. She notices JD standing there with his back to them and asks Clemencia who he is. Clemencia hasn't a clue because she can't see his face. She tells her he's probably some young stranger. JD walks off. "--Ay! Looks like he's leaving now anyway."

Noel is put to bed. Renato rushes frantically in as the doctor attends to his father. Leonarda stands at the foot of the bed. Noel recovers consciousness long enough to speak to his son and asks him to take care of JD as if he were his own family. Renato promises. Leonarda looks away, muy displeased.

JD climbs to the top of a hill in the countryside that overlooks the finca. Enraged, he screams to the four winds that he is not a Montes de Oca and never wanted to be!

Unfortunately for Leona, the doctor takes the pulse of the passed-out Noel and tells her he's still alive, then asks her to leave so he can work on him.

We beam back to the seashore again. One of Pedro and Santos' friends' mother is ill and they haven't any money for a doctor or medicine. Santo says he'll help him by pawning the gold chain his dead daddy left him. The friend won't hear of it but Pedro tells him Santo has something else of value left: his noble and kind heart. The friend accepts.

Renato catches up to JD in the fields and asks him to stay. JD says no way cuz his nasty mama just ran him off. Renato wonders where he'll go. JD says he'll return to Devil's Rock. Renato says he can't because he promised his father he'd take care of him, and besides JD hasn't got any money to pay for things. JD says he doesn't need it because he can fish and hunt. When Renato realizes that JD is determined to leave, he decides to run away with him to hunt and fish ala Huckelito Finn and Tomasito Sawyer. JD says his mama would never allow it. Renato says he has a little chest chuck full of money and offers it to Juan.

Leonarda notices her son's been missing for a while and sends Orca off to find him.

Unfortunately their plans come to naught. Renato brings JD his chest of coins. He says with it they can buy passage on a ship and travel the world. "--Are you sure?" Renato says yes. JD wraps the coins in a neckerchief. They hear the adults calling for Renato and start to race off but Renato trips and hurts himself. He tells JD to go ahead and he'll catch up to him. JD leaves just in time. Orca grabs Renato by the collar and drags him back home for a scolding.

Pedro and Santo go to the pawn shop. (It definitely doesn't look like any pawn shop I've ever seen.) The clerk assures Santo that if it doesn't get sold he, as the rightful owner, will be able to get it back whenever he chooses. Santo agrees and takes the money. (I smell a rat in this cheesy place.)

Back at the finca, Leonarda hugs her little boy and tells him how frightened she was. Then she notices that his coins are gone. Renato tells her he gave them all to Juan. Orca offers to run after him and get them back but Leona say no need. Even with him taking the money they've come out on top. The kid's left.

In town now, JD notices a (supposedly young, 20-something) guy selling sweets on the street. A couple of dandies are harassing him. JD runs to Remi's aid and chases the two jerks away.

Meanwhile, Leona receives a letter from Rod. She thinks to herself that perhaps it says he's returning home and what with her soon to be a widow.....but no. The letter says he's staying in Europe and wants her to send his daughters there to be educated. She rips the letter up and sobs. Rod has now taken everything from her: her love, her dreams, even her youth, and now his daughters.

Back in town, JD and Remi joyfully renew old acquaintances. Later, JD walks to the shore where he finds an old abandoned boat. "Juan de Dios" is painted on the side. He realizes it must have been his father's. He begins to take it out but is stopped by the same nasty soldier. JD says he's no thief. Just as the soldier starts to take issue with him Santiago appears and yells at the guy to leave him alone. "This boat is his because I have given it to him!" The soldier is a bit puzzled. Santiago throws the guy a bag of coins as a bribe (his mordito) and tells him to have that to quiet his concerns.

Santiago asks JD if he is Juan de Dios. JD says he is Juan del Diablo. Santiago says he knows him and his story very well. He shakes his hand and tells him to come with him. JD wants to know where to. Santiago says home to somebody who loves him greatly and has been looking everywhere for him. Santiago takes JD to meet Mabel who is overjoyed to find him at last. Santo and Pedro are there also. They tell him they are saddened by his father's death. Santiago tells Mabel then that, with his heart in his hand and in front of her closest friends, the man who she loved for for so long has unfortunately now died. His son is in need of support and a proper upbringing. He promises to take care of this for him if Mabel would agree to marry him. (What can I say? My 5th hanky runneth over.) Mabel is overcome.

Sometime later in the port of Veracruz it looks as if all three are dressed in their best and ready to embark on a great voyage. Santiago tells JD that he's happy that he has decided to join them. He promises never to try to take the place of his father. He promises though to look out for him, give him his last name, and to love him like a son. JD is in shock from his good fortune. Later, while looking over the bow at the activity on shore, he thinks to himself he'll take the name Almada and he will reject the name of Montes de Oca. One day, he swears, he will come back to avenge the death of his parents and to take revenge against the Montes de Oca.

In Madrid, Rod is reading the local paper in the lobby of his hotel. He reads about Maximilian and Mexico's now having an emperor to rule it. He sees dark times ahead for his native country and is glad that he sets sail tomorrow and will be far away from there. He looks up and notices a beautiful lady wearing a blue lace mantilla holding a small dog under her arm. He asks who she is from the bellman and then gives her his card. The lady receives his card, smiles broadly, and walks over to him. (Is she a fine lady, an acquaintance, or another trollop dressed like a fine lady? Hmmm. Inquiring minds want to know.)

Back in Veracruz, Noel seems to be recovering nicely. He's having breakfast on the back patio with the children. Renato says importantly --for benefit of the twins-- that his father will be fine soon because he's a very strong man. Noel says he's found out the twins are leaving the next morning for Europe. He tells them to study hard and behave while they are there. Regi dutifully promises that they will. He tells Renato that he heard Juan has left the finca. Renato promises to look for him everywhere. Regi asks who Juan is. Noel doesn't answer but thinks to himself that it's a long story he'll tell them some day.

That night on the boat, Mabel tells Juan that she also loved his father but that it was an impossible dream of hers because his father and mother were destined for each other. JD says he would have liked to have known her. Mabel says she was the sweetest person. The moon was witness to their oath of enduring love and by that same moon she will swear that she will take care of him and watch over him as if he were her very own. She notices the leather chain with the shark tooth that he's wearing around his neck. JD says he's kept it because his father won it in a fight to the death with a shark. This is his legacy to him, she says. He must get what fate denied to his father and he must never let anyone get the best of him. Ever!

We beam back to the dark cellar of the finca. It's late at night. Leonarda is supposedly looking for something when Orca walks up behind her and says it must be something important for her to be down there that time of night. She stutters and stammers for a reply. He wonders if she's there to finally pay him the price for his silence that she's been denying him all this time. She stammers again and says he's mistaken. He makes his move.

Upstairs, in the twins bedroom, Renato and the girls say their good-byes. Renato says he'll miss them and especially Regi because she's his best friend and always will be. She'll miss him, too, she says, then asks if he's really thinking of travelling the world with Juan. Clemencia is all ears. "Juan?" Renato says he's just Juan and his father asked him to take care of him and protect him. It seemed the boy was really important to him. Bells go off in Clemencia's head. She races off to Noel's bedroom and asks him why he never told her that her Rosie's son was there in the house with them. Noel is shocked she knows. He says it was his intention to have the boy stay there with them, but then he had the accident and was unconscious. Once he came to and found out the boy left he sent a worker out looking for him. The man came back with news. She wants to know what news. He says he found out Juan left that morning for Europe with a woman named Mabel and a an unknown man whose name he he didn't get. He sent the man to ask the fishermen about him. Clemencia is distraught. Noel starts to say something.

Suddenly we are transported back down to the cellar as Leonarda is being undressed by Orca. Horniness has won the day...or rather, the evening. (It definitely gives a new meaning to the tunnel of love, doncha think?)

Upstairs in his bedroom, Noel looks over the letter again. He asks forgiveness from JD Sr. for not having been able to take care of his son for him and prays to God that wherever JD Jr. is that he's alright.

The narrator's voice begins again. "This is the great love story that is ready to commence, an unforgettable story in which years later there will be four witnesses confronting each other: Renato, Regina, Ayme and Juan del Diablo."

The picture changes. [This is a dicey translation for me. Feel free to correct it. I'm doing this with only three hours of sleep.] "A young man is galloping through fertile fields of the Finca del Mar. On the bravest of horses he will have to trample American soil. His proud hand firmly holds the reins. He's a man who appears to be searching for something that he hasn't found. Perhaps he will never find it. Meanwhile, his eyes span with a single look the whole of what can be seen, the land knows that he is the lord and master. He is Renato."

The scene changes to a city scape. "And from the murmur of water comes a sweet and mature fruit that would seem to caress it. Around it is the fragrance of a woman, a young, passionate female, legs that frolic under the weight (?). The woman would seem to be resting, to tremble and to burn from desire. Her heart would seem to hold a volcano of passions. She is a woman who hopes, who lies in wait, like a wild animal stalking its prey. (We see her so hot to trot she's got her bustier open to the breeze, basket-ball sized bazoombas bulging forth.) --like lava waits to cross through fire and very soon will overflow its boundaries. (Yep, I'd say that's some kind of passionate. Whooeee!) That one, that one is Ayme."

The scene changes again to a room full of pictures lying around. "Inside the room of a boarding school there is a woman in whom the intensity of life beats, a world of passions inside her that she tries to conceal, putting it into her daily work. See, her body is very young still, but her heart loves now like a woman. As if a universe of passion was burning in her large eyes, and would run along her pale skinned cheeks. This woman loves and waits for the dream with the man she loved. This woman is Regina."

The scene changes to the ocean and a young man bobbing in the sea. "Like a wild animal from the depths of the sea there emerges a rough man, like it's nothing, in between the waves that protect him." Up jumps JD "all growed up", with long black tresses (and a body the envy of any man half EY's age). He's smiling proudly after catching an octopus with his bare hands. The narrator continues. "As he comes inwards to the shore, his bare feet would seem to hold fast, leaving heavy, well-marked tracks. And, he would seem, under the ray of the sun, to have got a brilliant victory. He is a son of nature, master of the earth, the sea. He is a rebel who yearns to lunge himself at the entire world, fighting and conquering. This one, this one is Juan del Diablo.
[Ok. I'm now running on fumes here. If I screwed up anything let me know. My brain cells have turned to Jello, but I'll gladly change it when the batteries are fully recharged. --Black Heart Jardinera]


Dinero #30, 2/26/10: Tequila Makes His Negotiations Kick Off

Title too much of a stretch? Yeah, I thought so. Anyway…

Susana says Marco isn’t the love of Ale’s life but Ale claims there is no such thing; it’s only a fairy tale. Susana admits she may not know much about love but she does know that Ale deserves a man better than Marco to care for her and protect her. Ale thought-bubbles that Susana is right; she shouldn’t marry Marco.

The cheese/dairy salesman is impressed by Rafael and introduces himself (Aurelio) and his wife (Regina). The guys sit down to have a drink and talk business.

Ale gets a phone call from the health insurance company, confirming that if she travels to have her surgery it would be a month before she could return. Ale tells Susana to make an appointment for the operation.

Marco tells Chavez he has to foot the bill for Ale’s surgery or else he’ll have to wait even longer to get married. Chavez complains that Ale’s traveling plus the cost of her physical therapy would equal “at least 10 cattle”. (I think he’s talking about the ranch they have; this part has never been very clear for me.) Marco says it’s the best way to get Ale down the aisle.

Jorge calls Marco because he wants to meet and talk about the hacienda. They agree to meet at 7 that night and Marco celebrates his luck with Chavez.

Rafael and Aurelio are totally wasted on tequila. Rafa tells Aurelio that if he signs the papers, Rafa will have a fully equipped car ready for him in eight days.

Aurelio’s cowboy-hat-wearing friend Julian interrupts and Aurelio introduces Rafael. Julian chides Aurelio for trying to buy such a costly car. Rafa slurs it isn’t that expensive but Julian decides he doesn’t have time to listen to a sales-pitch and leaves.

Aurelio starts to have second thoughts; everyone else he works with has a car like his, so why should he buy a new one? Rafa says then Aurelio can be the first to upgrade!

Rafa wants to form a business alliance with Aurelio. If Aurelio lets Rafa meet with his co-workers and Rafa sells them all cars, he won’t take his commission. (Can anyone clarify this?)

Chavez and Marco plan their finances. Chavez says he’ll have to sell a few more cattle to cover it all.

Karen calls Marco and says she wants to get to know him better. She doesn’t want there to be any secrets between them. (Buena suerte!) Karen invites him to a “going away” party for her uncle, Hector Arturo. Her friends and family want to see him again.

Marco’s blood pressure shoots through the roof when Karen tells him the party is at 7 that night. Now he has to figure out who to please; if he cancels with Jorge, the inheritance plans won’t be settled and if he cancels with Karen, she’ll tell her uncle who could tell Jorge about Marco’s lies.

Marco decides he has to get rid of Karen without upsetting her. He and Chavez start brainstorming how to pull it off.

Ale tells Susana to call Rafael. Susana warns Rafa that Ale is fuming and Rafa isn’t surprised. Rafa tells Aurelio he will wait for him at the Siglo the next day to sell him a car.

Aurelio says he can’t do it because his son is getting married. He invites Rafa to come to the wedding, he can even bring a date, so they can talk about it then.

Jaime and Julieta sit on a street corner, counting her earnings. Julie is so excited about how successful she’s been. Julie convinces Jaime to go with her so she can buy some of their stuff out of hock. Jaime is left to lug all the recovered loot into the house.

Rosaura tells the entire office the gossip about Ale: she’s not getting married until after her operation, but Ale will be gone for a month because of it. Everyone cheers. They wonder who’ll take over while Ale is gone and Marino is semi-elected for the position.

Rafa stumbles back to the Siglo and Nelson has to direct him to the right desk. Of course, Ale yells for Rafa to come to her office. Rosaura and Claudia try to cheer him up with the news that Ale will be gone for a month when she has her operation.

Ale scolds Rafa for not reporting to work and for showing up drunk. Rafa says having a few drinks was an important part of his negotiations with a client. Ale yells that Rafa is not to drink during business hours.

Rafa says he is on the verge of closing a huge business deal. “In which cantina?” Ale quips. Rafa swears he was in a dairy market. “Then why didn’t you drink milk?!” Rafa promises he will have a sealed deal before Ale leaves for her surgery.

Rafa tells Ale he’s happy she’s doing well. He has nightmares because he feels so bad about her injuries. Ale asks if he anyone told him that after the operation, her wedding is back on. Rafa looks less than excited to hear about it.

Rafa didn’t know Ale had rescheduled the wedding. He half-heartedly congratulates her; he’s glad her life is returning to normal.

Rafa then says he needs to borrow a car for the next day. He severely slurs his explanation why and Ale gets fed up. She threatens him with her cane and tells him to get out.

The police pull Pepeto over. They question him but nothing really happens.

Chavez barges into Karen’s apartment all in a flutter; Marco’s “psychiatrist” is worried about him. He says they’ve got to get out of there before Marco arrives. Conveniently, the doorbell rings.

Rafa’s former cellmates (do they have names?) chat in their beauty shop with attractive employee, Ovi.

Chavez tells Karen to open the door but not to tell Marco he’s there. Karen asks why and Chavez says they’re in grave danger. Whatever she does, Karen is not to tell Marco he’s there.

Marco asks Karen whom she was talking to. She claims no one but he scours the room looking for Chavez. Marco “finds” Chavez behind the couch and asks Karen why she’s cheating on him with such garbage.

Karen tries to explain and Chavez sputters an excuse but Marco punches him in the face. They scuffle while Karen looks on with a mixture of concern and confusion. She threatens to call the police. Chavez helps Marco compose himself and Chavez tells Karen they have to leave to get Marco’s “medicine”.

They leave and Karen slams the door behind them, completely stunned by what just happened.

Chavez and Marco argue about their “fight”. Chavez asks Marco if he really thinks he’s garbage. Marco says of course not and hops in his car to meet with Ale.

Julieta explains to Rafa and Leonor how she got their stuff back with her own money. Rafa asks again if the money she’s making is from the university. Julie swears it is and is offended that he doubts her. Rafa assures Julie he doesn’t doubt her and is grateful for her help.

Vicky arrives at the beauty shop and introduces her friend Janet, who needs a makeover for a date. The poor girl doesn’t have a chance to say anything for herself before the group pounces on her with hairbrushes and make-up.

Marco is eating dinner with Jorge, Rosario, and Ale. Jorge says he wants to draw up the papers so that part of the hacienda will be in Marco’s name once he and Ale are married.

Rosario says Marco is going to get everything he deserves and no one is going to stand in the way of it. (Well let’s hope so…)

Marco tells Ale he’s going to deposit the money for her operation trip so they can get married soon. Cheers all around but Ale looks less than enthused.

Rafa chats with Jaime about Ale leaving for her surgery. Jaime’s happy that Rafa will have a month of peace without early-morning calls. Rafa says he doesn’t really mind it.

Rafa’s excited about his possible business deal but, if it falls through, he can always sell some of his whiskey to cover his debt. Jaime chokes on his drink.

Jaime recovers and asks Rafa why he seems so down. Rafa can’t figure out why he’s so upset by the news that Ale is going to get married.

Avances: Ale has doubts about marrying Marco and invites herself to go to the wedding with Rafa.


Friday, February 26, 2010

Mujeres Asesinas 2, Thursday, February 25: The case of the homicidal hairdresser.

Tonight, Daniela Castro is "Rosa, Heredera" (Rosa , Heiress)

A woman of a certain age sits at her dining room table. Actually, her head rests on her dining room table, bleeding all over it, while her cat eats his breakfast out of a bowl set precariously close to the pool of blood. Ungrateful beast. We hear a voiceover explaining, "this is me, or was me," and that this is the end of something that was a long time coming. She wonders what "we" did. Now they're going to show up and investigate, and "manosear" (grope) her and really, she knows who did it. The one responsible for her ending up in a mess of blood is Loneliness. Well, ok, case closed, we'll tune in next week. Pfft.

Sing it, Gloria….

The soon-to-be dead woman feeds her cat canned food while she chatters at him. She feeds the cat on top of the table, which I understand is the right of every American under some article or other, but which my fuzzballs better not even THINK is going to happen with them. She complains about her knees, in particular. She tells the cat everybody's got to go sometime, as she gives it a bowl of water. She says the cat still gets around, but she never ran off with a man, "What an idiot, right? And I was pretty!" The doorbell rings and "Ana Maria" calls to her.

I gave up and looked it up, this older woman, played by Silvia Pinal (who I'm not familiar with) is Inés. Inés goes to the door and has a pointless argument with Ana Maria about why she rings the doorbell when she has a key and why Inés always asks who it is when she knows it's Ana Maria. Inés gripes about being old and alone. The third woman suggests maybe AM and Inés should move in together, so then they won't be alone, but each was left their house by another person and refuses to leave. And also, they're both so crotchety, I wouldn’t want to live with either of them. Woman #3 cuts off the argument, or tries. Inés insists she'll go to the beauty salon alone. Woman #3, Esperanza, calls Inés' attitude a "berrinche" (temper tantrum), which only adds fuel to the fire. Inés stalks out alone and Ana Maria and Esperanza start cleaning up the breakfast dishes. AM figures she'll calm down and come back. There's some general fussing in the kitchen about Inés attitude.

Gerardo, the forensic guy, pulls the sheet back over the corpse and says "We've always known the dead can speak to us." Det. Capellan points to her head, mocking him. A foxy cougar (a cougary fox?) in a red blouse agrees with him that the body and the wounds talk about the victim and the crime. Capellan says that's why she wants the two of them working together, and she'll be waiting in her office. Before she can leave, Teniente Aranda (the curly-haired cop…doesn't she ever have a bad hair day?) calls on the cell phone/walkie and says there's a call that Capellan should hear. It sounds like a 911 call. Someone's asking for help, but the 911 operator needs them to calm down and give a location. The only word I can make out is "pobrecita" (poor little woman) before the call cuts off. Aranda says they've narrowed down the area and are closing in. Foxy Lady says they need to get out there. Capellan will keep Foxy Lady informed, but she wants Gerardo to go with her.

Black SUV's race down the road. Aranda has the exact location now and says that the psychologist (so now she's the Foxy Psychologist) is analyzing the tape. Capellan asks Gerardo why he thinks the call came from the murderer. He just had a "corazonada" (a hunch, a feeling) that the call didn't come from the victim. Capellan smiles and says that's why she wanted him to come, his hunches are usually right. Capellan calls Aranda back and says "go to code red" she wants everyone alert.

Inés walks into the beauty salon. A stylist starts asking what she wants done. Inés turns down a shampoo with the excuse that "I've already washed it and at my age, I can't be getting it wet all the time." The stylist jokingly asks her age…"Somewhere between 70 and the grave!" jajaja. The stylist is Rosa. Inés wants Rosa to "tutear" (use the familiar "you" instead of the formal) her so she doesn't feel so old. She fesses up to being 72 years old. Rosa says she looks a good 10 years younger. As they discuss the cut she wants, Dead!Inés voiceovers that "this was the beginning of our friendship, a friendship based on lies." Rosa asks if Inés is married and finds out that she never got married. "Oh, that's not possible, with that pretty face!" Dead!Inés says "And at that moment was when she started planning my death."

Back to Inés lying on the table. "I told her everything she needed to know and she told me everything I needed to hear. Lies. Sweet lies."

Rosa comes sauntering into a room where an old man is sitting. "This old lady is around 120," she laughs. "Did she say she was alone?" the man asks. Rosa says she's completely alone. She remembers Inés saying that when someone is so alone, any attention is like a gift. The man wonders if she has her "guacadito?" Rosa says those old ladies always have something. She thinks there might be a sister, but they joke that if she's 120, her sister must be 250.

At the salon, Rosa tells Inés that she doesn't need to feel alone. She can drop by any time, even if it's just for a coffee. Inés says something about she and her sister living in separate houses (I guess that's Ana Maria, which explains the 'tudes), then she leaves. Rosa calls one of the other girls over to do the hairstyle on her that they talked about earlier, "but quick, because I want to leave."

The old guy philosophizes that in America there are lots of ways to become a millionaire quickly, "selling drugs, inheriting, winning the lottery, or turning yourself into a politician." Rosa says she has no intention of stealing from anyone. The old guy, Mario, says this isn't about stealing, what she's going to do is invest. "This is a business in which you have to invest and then wait."

Rosa is in the middle of doing a client's hair when Inés comes in all upset. Rosa yells at someone to bring a glass of water and rubbing alcohol. Inés' trauma is that she's convinced something happened to her sister because she's not answering her phone and her car is in the garage. She didn’t want to go into the house and check, even though she's got the keys, because she got an "escalofrio" (shiver, shudder). Rosa calls for someone to bring her a "chamarra" (jacket) and tells Inés they'll go right away.

They go into the house calling for Ana Maria. Inés is convinced something happened because the car is outside. Rosa tells her Ana Maria must have stepped out. She finds the coffee pot still on and says AM must have just gone out to the supermarket or something. They finally see Ana Maria in her chair. Rosa says she's just sleeping. Inés goes over and starts calling her name and moving her. Ana Maria is dead. Inés starts crying and Rosa pats her on the back and does a quick mental estimate of the value of the room's contents.

The medical people zip up the bag and take the body. Inés sits at AM's dining room table crying that she was hardly ever sick. Rosa says "the doctor told you, she had a heart attack, sometimes these things happen and there's just no warning." Inés says AM was more like her daughter, ever since they were younger. Rosa says, if it makes her feel better, AM probably didn't suffer. She was just sitting there like a sleeping bird. She asks if Inés is now going to have two houses. Inés starts yelling at her that of course not, this house now belongs to Robertito who's in Canada! She keeps yelling that she didn't think Ana Maria was going to die before she did, and why is Rosa asking her about the house, what does she (Inés) care about the house! She starts crying again and Rosa asks her to calm down. She says this has been really difficult for her, too, and she was just trying to distract Inés. Inés now feels bad about dragging Rosa into this, but Rosa says not to worry about it, Inés isn't alone anymore. Inés doesn't know what she's supposed to do next, how to arrange the funeral, "and I'm sure there are lots of papers to sign, I can't be going all over the place!" And what about Robertito! How is she going to tell him. Rosa reminds her that she's there for Inés. "I don't want you to worry about the process or informing your nephew, I'll take care of everything!"

Mario yells up the stairs at Rosa that they've had some good luck, with the younger sister dying before the older. Rosa comes downstairs in all black with a zebra stripe scarf. Mario wonders if the nephew won't also try to get his aunt's house. Rosa says no way. He didn't even come to his own mother's funeral. She already told him what the "cínico" Roberto said, but she'll tell him again. "So sorry, how good that you're taking care of everything, of course, since the house is in my name already…." Well, says Mario, we've got another house to worry about, right? Rosa questions his "we." He says at some point the old lady is supposed to start helping her out. She says she hopes the moment is now, since she didn't help at all with the funeral arrangements, etc. Mario says this is only the beginning. She has to become indispensible to the old lady, her right hand, almost her daughter. Mario says to turn into whatever it takes. Rosa tells him she's had enough of his advice and he needs to start thinking about how he can help her. She storms out.

The cops come busting into Inés' house, where Rosa is trying to wipe something up from the table. They tell her to get away from the body and put her hands in the air. Dead!Inés says, "Are you crying, Rosa? I don't believe you anymore." Dead!Inés keeps talking over Rosa and the cops, so it's hard to make out what anyone's saying. Basically, Rosa is probably saying she didn't do it and Inés is saying she thought they were friends. Aranda leads Rosa out.

Inés is stirring some Jell-O as she yells to Rosa to come on in, she's just leaving a "gelatina" in the fridge for later. Instead, it's Esperanza, who wonders what would happen if it had been a thief. Not to worry, Inés has her revolver. Esperanza laughs. If the gun was Inés' dad's, then it must be rustier than the two of them put together. Inés supposes so, "But it would give them a good scare anyway!" Esperanza marvels over Inés' hair, which has gone blonde. Inés talks about how Rosa colored her hair, Rosa is so nice to her, Rosa does everything, Rosa is practically a sister to her. Esperanza thinks it's too early for that, but Inés says it's just a figure of speech. "The poor thing doesn't get along with her husband, that's why I'm putting her in my will and leaving her this house. I'm just waiting for her to come over so we can go to the notary together." Esperanza has her doubts, because Inés hasn't known Rosa for long and is now planning to leave the house to her. Rosa comes in and tells Inés she looks beautiful. Inés tries to start something by saying that Esperanza was talking about her. Rosa takes the bowl of Jell-O away and puts in in the fridge for Inés while Inés makes faces behind her back at Esperanza, like "see, I told you how nice she was!"

Dead!Inés sits at the table while to cops take pictures. Rosa, in her python print leggings, is in the living room with Det. Capellan and Aranda. Aranda gets Rosa's thumbprints on, dare I think it, her iPhone? She's not doing it with ink, just having Rosa press her thumbs to something that looks about iPhone size. Dead!Inés voiceovers that none of it was true, and Rosa was just carrying out a plan.

Rosa comes home after a hard day of getting old ladies to sign over their worldly possessions and announces to Mario that he's talking to "Rosa Dominguez, heredera." Mario tells her that Inés has already called twice and said she needs Rosa to come over right away. He snatches the folder with the paperwork out of her hands and tells her to get a move on. Rosa grabs her bag and walks out, saying "ay, mendiga vieja!" (needy old woman). As soon as she walks out, Mario throws his paper away and starts looking through the folder.

Rosa gets there and it turns out the big emergency was that Inés wanted her to come over so they could take a walk and then watch a novela together. Rosa has a hard time containing her impatience that Inés made it sounds like such a big deal, especially after they'd spent the whole day together. Inés, in her haze of self-delusion, thinks Rosa should be excited to go have a nice walk and then watch her novela in her next house.

Rosa is consulting with a client at the salon when Inés calls. She's gotten confused about which medication to take when and already took some of the wrong ones. Rosa says she'll be right over.

Rosa stands over Inés while she takes her medication, then gives her a kiss and says she'll be back in the afternoon. She leaves the receipts for the bills she paid and Inés says "What would I do without you?"

Inés calls Rosa to come over right away! She can't find her medication! Rosa loses her temper, telling Inés they're in the same drawer as always. She shoves the bottle into Inés' hand.

Rosa tries to do some accounting at the salon. She waves off the girl who answers the phone when she hears that it's Inés. The girl tells Inés that Rosa isn't there and Inés slams the phone down and won't leave a message. Rosa throws up her hands and goes back to what she was doing. Which includes having foils in her hair.

A bald man gives Rosa a tip for her work and she says she'll see him next week. Rosa starts talking to her next client about her hair and Inés comes in, enraged. She loudly accuses of Rosa of lying about having just gotten there (which she was) and just paying attention to her until she got her name in the will (which she did). Inés calls her a hypocrite. Rosa tries to calm her down and asks her to go into the back room with her, but Inés refuses. Rosa tells one of the other girls to take care of her client and takes Inés into the back. Inés keeps up the accusation that Rosa was just trying to get on her good side to get the house. Rosa tells her to do what ever the hell she wants to with the damn house, she can't take it anymore. "Oh, so you were just putting up with me to get the house, is that it?" Rosa says she wasn't putting up with her for anything, especially since she can't put up with her, no one can! "Esperanza can't put up with you and your sister hated you!" That earns her a slap. Inés tells Rosa that she's going to change her will and leave the house to the parish priest. Rosa tries to talk to her, and she tries to say it's not about the will, she just wants to talk. Inés says if that's the case, then come over to the house tonight.

Moran is on his laptop, analyzing the fingerprints. Det. Capellan starts questioning Rosa in the living room. Rosa told 911 that two men came into the house and attacked them. Capellan says none of the locks had been forced. Rosa says they tied her up. Gerardo asks to see her wrists. Rosa says they also hit her and Gerardo wants to know where. Moran calls over that he's noticing a bruise on the victim's cheek that's about a week to ten days old. Rosa claims not to know where it came from. Aranda comes in with Inés' gun and says both Inés' and Rosa's fingerprints were on it. Aranda's walking around a crime scene in a tank top. Why does that strike me as inappropriate attire?

Inés is sitting up in bed reading when Rosa comes in. They snipe at each other until Inés says her back is hurting and Rosa comes over to give her a massage. They keep arguing. Rosa asks how much longer Inés is going to be in this bad mood. When Inés won't answer, Rosa starts to leave. Inés points her father's gun at Rosa and says "If we're all going to die one day, then why don't we die together?" Rosa tries to calm her down. Inés calls Rosa a coward and points the gun at her own head. Rosa starts crawling over the bed to try and take the gun away from her. She finally pries it out of her hands, and then yells at her, "Loca!" Inés yells back that if Rosa doesn't want to end up with nothing, she has to put up with Inés' craziness. "The notary already told me that if I want to change my will I should just think about it and then call him and I already thought about it and I'm going to call him tomorrow!" Rosa sweeps everything off of Inés dresser to show just how much she gives a crap about the house and Inés' things. Inés threatens to call the cops and Rosa knocks her out with the butt of the gun. When Rosa sees that Inés is knocked out, she puts the gun in the nightstand and walks out.

Capellan asks and Rosa admits that she did hit her with the gun, but that Inés threatened her first. Rosa denies knowing anything about the gun having been fired and says the incident happened 5 or 6 days ago. "What did you do after that?" Rosa says she went home and talked to her husband, who showed her the error of her ways and convinced her to come back and apologize to Inés.

Mario reads Rosa the riot act for screwing up the plan. He tells her to go back and beg forgiveness and ask for her help. Rosa asks "help for what?" and Mario backhands her. He tells her to go tell Inés that her husband beat her and ask her for a place to stay. "I told you I'd help you out at some point."

Dead!Inés voiceovers "You told me you had problems with Mario, that I was your friend, the only one who could help you, and you wanted to be with me." as we see that a week has passed. Inés is letting Rosa into the house and giving her a hug. Dead!Inés says "You told me all the things I needed to hear. I wonder if we always only hear the lies." Rosa tells Inés that she really doesn't care about the house and the will, she just wants them to be friends like they were before. Inés hugs her and tells her not to worry about it.

Inés calls to Rosa that the news is starting. Rosa picks up the phone and calls Mario. Inés picks up the phone and listens to the conversation. Rosa tells Mario she can't take any more. It's been five days and the crazy old woman just yells all the time. Mario tells her she'd better put up with it and keep the old lady good and happy to stay in her will. He hangs up on Rosa. Once Inés hears Rosa hang up, she does the same. Inés dumps her bowl of gruel on the floor and then screams and waits for Rosa to come in. She tells Rosa it fell. Rosa says she'll get a rag and clean it up and Inés tells her she's sorry, she'll have to clean it with a brush or else the milk will smell, oh, what would she ever do without her. Rosa takes the bowl out of the room and Inés goes back to watching TV.

Det. Capellan tells Rosa that there is no evidence to indicate that any man came in by force, nor that he attacked her or Inés. She says there's also no physical evidence that Rosa was tied up or beaten. What they do have evidence of is that Rosa had previously hit Inés with the butt of a gun. Rosa's fingerprints are all over the house. Gerardo comes over and says that with head wounds, especially near the occipital lobe, the veins tend to explode because of the intracranial pressure and the blood aerosolizes, leaving stains like Rosa has on her face and shirt. Det. Capellan asks Rosa if she'd like to tell them what happened.

Rosa comes in and asks Inés why the door was locked. Inés says something about going to see the parish priest. Rosa says she didn't remember Inés telling her that. Inés asks where Rosa was and Rosa says she was a work. Inés tells her that she called the salon, and Monica said that Rosa had called in sick. Rosa accuses Inés of spying on her. Inés says she was just worried about Rosa's husband abusing her. Rosa apologizes and says she should have told Inés. Inés says Rosa has to tell her everything-- that's just what she was talking to Padre Luis about. Padre Luis said that where there's trust, there's "prudencia" (caution, good sense). She thinks Padre Luis should be listening to her and Rosa laughs at the idea of Inés counseling the priest. Inés comes in with the cat's food and another bowl and sets them on the dining room table. Inés says she talked to Padre Luis about maybe selling the house if he needs to and investing the money to use it to take care of the poor if he needs to. Rosa wants to know what house she's talking about, but I think we know the answer to that one.

Rosa tells Det. Capellan that she got tired of the lies and she couldn't control herself. She wanted to open her head up and pull all the lies out.

"But this house isn't…." "It's Padre Luis' and the parish's. You told me you didn't care about the house." "And you told me you hadn't changed your will!" "Well, I guess we both lied. You to get the house, and me…" "To have a servant! You've had me at your service 24 hours a day!" Inés laughs at the idea of Rosa being her servant. She calls her an unscrupulous slave, a greedy one with no dignity. Rosa starts laughing about the idea of dignity. Inés says Rosa would have licked the ground she walked on, and all for what? "For an old house." Rosa says that if she doesn't have any dignity, then Inés is a damn manipulative old woman. Inés calls her a hyena and a vulture. She dares Rosa to kill her. "Death would be a liberation, but for you, all you have left is to see the world pass you by through the windows of a neighborhood beauty parlor." Rosa tells her to shut up. "For you there is nothing, nothing, nothing." Rosa hits her over the head with a glass bowl and yells at her to shut up. The bloody butterfly flies away.

"Rosa Dominguez was condemned to 20 years in prison for voluntary manslaughter, aggravated by viciousness and premeditation. She will be released from prison in 2026. Her husband, Mario Dominguez, filed for divorce and never visited her in prison."


El Clon, Fri., Feb. 26 - Forget the bridal shower. In Morocco, after the bride gets her virginity certificate, her friend wax her

We open at Ali's house where Lucas is introduced to Said as Jade's future husband. In addition to Jade, Latifa and Zoraida are also there. When Ali says to Lucas that he would be invited to the wedding if he were going to be in Morocco at that time, Lucas says, 'We'll see about that (Eso está por verse).' Zoraida and Jade are in agony and everyone else is oblivious. Lucas corrects himself by saying that if he were invited, he would stay. Ali replies that Lucas' father needs him and he has to return to the States. While she goes to get tea, Zoraida prays that no misfortune falls on the house before Lucas goes home.

Osvaldo brings Dora a present of tiny football shoes and asks when they are going to the doctor. Dora tells him that there isn't any point in him going to the doctor, he's sterile. She is going to get artificially inseminated. She says that Sylvia will chose a donor who is just like him. Idiot Osvaldo goes ballistic and accuses Dora of betraying him by having a child with another man.

Said leaves. Ali tells Jade and Latifa that they are blessed by having such good future husbands. Latifah asks why Jade has such a gloomy face. She should be happy. Ali tells Lucas that he has bought Lucas' ticket back to the States.

Dora tries to explain about artificial insemination to Osvaldo. He either doesn't understand how AI works or is such a macho idiot that he is jealous of an anonymous sperm. Once again, Osvaldo leaves. He goes to the church and blows out the flame on his giant candle but then changes his mind. Meanwhile, Dora is telling her girlfriends, Vicki and Norma, about how Osvaldo thinks he is being cheated on by a sperm donor. Norma agrees with Osvaldo and Dora accuses her of wanting Osvaldo for herself. They have a spat and Norma leaves. Dora tells Vicki that she thinks Norma put a spell on Osvaldo so he won't understand AI.

Meanwhile Cristina is still trying to phone Leo. Leo is practically catatonic.

Ali tells Lucas that after the wedding, he will return to the States with Latifa and her husband.

Latifa tells Jade that she should be happy with her rich fiance who buys her nice presents. Jade says that Latifa can have Said and all his presents. Latifa mentions that on Thursday, they have to get their virginity certificates. Having thrown her bonnet over the windmill as they used to say, now Jade asks Latifa about what happens if a girl isn't a virgin when she marries. Latifa cheerily answers that letting a man touch a woman before marriage is the worst sin and the only way a family can be free of the sin is to kill the woman. Uh oh.

Albieri returns from the funeral and finds that Luisa has taken her things and gone.

Luisa is telling Sylvia about how awful it was to kiss Albieri and feel that he wasn't there. She thought Albieri cared for her. Sylvia doesn't mince words. She asks if Luisa thought that Albieri cared for her because he let her clean his house, take his laundry to the cleaners and be at his beck and call 24 hours a day?

Enrique tries to get Leo to go on a trip or do something to get past his grief. He suggests the comfort of faith. Leo says that he has enough things driving him crazy without religion. Leo overhears Rosa telling Enrique how Leo let Cristina poison his mind against Diego and how she tried calling Cristina's house when Diego announced his plan to fly solo to Daytona but Leo wouldn't answer the phone.

Cristina and Vicki are in church waiting for a priest to say mass for Diego. Cristina says that since she can't get through to Leo by phone, she will camp outside his house until he talks to her. Then she has an idea. Albieri will help her. He is a good friend of Leo and he approved of their relationship. Vicki recalls that Albieri is Dora's doctor, which gives Cristina a way to reach him.

Luisa comes in to see Albieri who is looking at a picture of Diego. Luisa says that she is leaving to go back to 'her country' to visit her family. She starts to leave and out of the blue, Albieri asks her to marry him. She agrees but he doesn't want her to touch him. He says that he cares about her a lot but doesn't love her. Luisa doesn't care. In fact, she tells Sylvia that she always knew that Albieri did love her but wouldn't admit to himself. Albieri tells Julio that asking Luisa to marry him was the only way out of the situation that he felt responsible for. Julio says that this is the perfect solution for someone who likes to torment himself and feels guilty about everything.

Ali tells Lucas about the marriage contract that is drawn up for Muslim weddings. According to the internet, the arabic name of this is Aqd Nikah. Ali's says that Islam is better than the west in this respect because the contract details the responsibilities of the parties if they separate. Lucas asks if Latifa could marry a non-Muslim. He notes that Ali has lived in the world and might not think like everyone here. Ali says that he is a either a Muslim wherever he is or he's not a Muslim. Nice try Lucas.

Lucas sneaks a chat with Jade. Jade says that he may not see her again. What she did was haraam, a big sin and she will be punished. She asks why she couldn't have met him in the US. Lucas says that he tried to talk to Ali but he couldn't. He will ask Albieri to do it. He also asks Jade to dance for him in the ruins.

Latifa finds Zoraida watching the racy video of the novela. She tells Zoraida that she has to watch to learn how to drive Mohammed crazy on their their wedding night. They watch it together.

Jade is not happy as she, Latifa and Zoraida head for the virginity check. Zoraida asks if she has done something stupid. Yup. But she denies it to Zoraida. They run into Nazira who tells them that the inheritance that Said is in Cairo to get is more than they expected. Latifa says that she and Jade have brought their husband's luck. Cattily, Nazira says that her brothers have brought Jade and Latifa luck and she hopes they can keep their husbands since they don't follow all the customs. Latifa says that Nazira will eat her words when she sees their virginity certificates. Jade looks miserable. At the clinic, Latifa emerges with her certificate. Jade is next. Once again, Zoraida asks Jade if she did something stupid.

Cristina shows up outside Leo's house. The guards (what is it with the capri pants on the guards? Not a good look with the boots and socks) tell her Leo isn't home. She says that she will wait.

Jade dodges a bullet. The doctor was Italian, took pity on her and gave her a virginity certificate.

Dora tells Vicki that she is starting the pregnancy treatment the next day. Osvaldo comes in with a suitcase. He and Dora go outside and he tells her that he is going to Mexico because he doesn't want to stick around and see her have somebody else's baby. He suggests they adopt. Dora can't believe he would be willing to be the father of some random kid but not her own child. She says that she would give up anything for him but not her child. He leaves.

Latifa is bouncing off the walls at the prospect of being married. Jade learns another tradition of the Muslim wife. She has to be waxed every 20 days for her husband [a full Brazilian or what?] "Whatever (me da igual)," says Jade. [What about leaving women the way Allah made them - with hair?]

Latifa gets waxed for the first time. Ouch.

Jade slips away from the waxing party to meet Lucas. She takes off her black robe and veils and is in a spiffy black and silver dancing outfit. Lucas says that when they are old, he will always remember this moment and what she wore. She dances for him while Zoraida put henna designs on Latifa and she puts on the jewelry that Mohammed gave her.

Lucas tells Jade that he loves her and he's not going to lose her. He will confront anyone: her uncle; her fiance, anyone but he won't let her go. Jade reminds him that he has to leave the next day and this might be the last time that she sees him. Lucas swears to Jade that he will come back in a week for her.

Latifa comes down in her wedding dress with the women in the house ululating [according to the internet, the Arabic word for the celebratory noise that the women are making is: zaghareet.]

Ali asks Allah to bless her with many children. When she has gone, Ali tell Zoraida that he is concerned for Jade. He asks Zoraida if she knows if Jade has spoken again with the foreigner. Zoraida says no. Ali says that he shouldn't have postponed the wedding. Zoraida says that after tomorrow, there is no need to worry and then realizes her blunder. Ali asks why tomorrow? Zoraida says that Latifa will leave and so will the foreigner. Ali does not ask how she knows this. He says that Jade is as clever as a woman can be so it is better to take precautions. He asks to see Jade.

Cristina steps in front of Leo's car as he is leaving the house.

With Lucas present, Ali tells Jade that she will go to the US with Latifa and her husband (and Lucas) until her fiancee returns. She will be better protected there. Jade is overjoyed and does not hide it at all. Ali should be suspicious.

The credits roll.


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