Maya was reminded of the feeling of being loved. Three months had passed since the unexpected ‘date’ that had happened between her and Richard. They kept in touch after that date. Richard is always fetching her from work and taking her out to dinner every night. Sometimes, Maya would just ask him to eat dinner at some eatery, which is a first for Richard.
Richard also sends flowers to Maya. Most of the times, he would give it to her personally. This undeniable sweetness between them didn’t escape the eyes of their co-workers. Maya would always be teased by her co-FAs while Richard would be hearing humours about him through Liza, his assistant. He didn’t really like the idea of having humours about him but the current humour is an exception to him, because it involves Maya.
Yes, he is indeed in love. He finally admitted that to himself after some time. He thought that he just likes her in some way but he was mistaken. He also knew that he needs to be careful. Because of Maya’s incident, he knew that she became more fragile. So he takes everything slowly.
Little did Richard know, Maya is also falling for him. But she always has this tiny voice in her head that is always telling her not to fall for him because she might end up broken again.
Maya and Richard are currently having dinner at Richard’s place with the company of Abbie.
Afterwards, Maya volunteered to put Abbie to sleep. The little girl likes her so much. After a few parts of some stories, Abbie finally fell asleep.
Maya went out of Abbie’s room silently. Then she looked for Richard. She finally found him sitting at the veranda. She smiled at the sight of him.
“Gusto mo ng kape?” she asked.
Richard smiled when he saw Maya. “Pwede ba?”
“Oo naman. Teka lang.”
After a few minutes, Maya came back to the veranda, bringing two cups of coffee.
“Napatulog mo agad si Abbie?” Richard asked as Maya settles down to her chair.
“Oo naman. Ako pa, magaling sa bata.” She teased. Richard gave a soft chucke.
“She really likes you.”
She smiled. “Para kasi siyang girl version nung kambal ko eh. ‘Yun nga lang, nag-iisa siya. Ehh Chard, nasan ba yung mommy ni Abbie?”
“She’s actually our niece. Abbie is adopted. Namatay ‘yung nanay niya dahil sa cancer. So my younger sister and I adopted her. Though Abbie calls me Tito while she calls my sister mommy.”
“Ahh. Nasan ‘yung sister mo?”
“Nasa US siya ngayon, nagtatrabaho. I think you’ve seen her. ‘Dun sa office ko, may picture don diba? The one with our parents and with Abbie.”
Maya suddenly remembered the picture.
“Ahhhhh.” She said. “Akala ko asawa mo.” She whispered.
Richard laughed. Maya thought that he didn’t hear it, but he did. “So that’s why tinaguan mo ako ng isang linggo.”
“Oy! Hi-hindi ah! Ito! Assuming lagi.” She said, trying to hide the truth that it is somewhat the reason.
He finally stopped laughing. “My sister’s name is Alex. She’s three years younger than me, and she’s owns a restaurant in America. Ayan, kilala mo na siya. I’m not married nor in a relationship. Kung may asawa ako, edi hindi kita liligawan.”
Maya blushed at the last word Richard said. He is indeed courting her. The future of this relationship is all up to whether she says yes or no.
“Richard, hindi mo naman ako kailangang ligawan eh.” She said.
“Bakit? Sinasagot mo na ko?” He teased. But also hopeful at the same time.
“Oy. Hindi no!”
He sighed. “So, it’s a no.” He frowned at the thought.
“Hindi!” she also sighed. “Ang hirap kasi Richard. Ang ayos na ng takbo ng buhay mo tapos binabalak mo pang magsingit ng katulad ko. Katulad kong magulo ‘yung buhay tapos may mga anak pang iniintindi. Edi magugulo rin yung buhay mo.” Finally, she said the words that have been bugging her since forever.
“Hindi naman sa ayoko sa mga nangyayari, ang sa’kin lang .. ewan ko ba! Para kasing unfair para sa’yo.”
“You’re right.” Richard faced her. “Maayos ang buhay ko, pero hindi ba mas mas magandang sabihin na masaya ako sa buhay ko? And because it’s my life, I know when I’ll be happy.” He reached for her hand.
“I’ll be happy if you’re going to be by my side.”
Maya suddenly felt her cheeks going red. She never expected that Richard will turn this situation around.
“Alam kong natatakot kang magmahal ulit, lalo na dahil sa nangyari noon. But I’m telling you, from the bottom of my heart, I’m never ever going to leave you. I’ll be here whenever you have problems, I’ll be here if you need a father figure for your sons, and I’ll be here to make you happy.”
“Pero Richard ..”
“I love you, Maya.”
A tear from Maya’s eye suddenly dropped. Her heart ached in hearing those three words that were once said to her by the former love of her life. And now, Richard is saying it. She wants to believe in him, but there’s just something that’s holding her back.
“Richard, gusto kong maniwala sa sinabi mo, pero … pero natatakot ako. Ayokong magsimula na naman lahat ng ‘to tapos hindi nanaman makakarating sa dulo.” Her tears are suddenly flowing.
“Yes, we’ll never make it to the end, because I don’t want our relationship to have an end. I want it to go on and on forever, for eternity.” He said sincerely. “Hindi kita isisingit sa puso ko, Maya,” he put her hand on his chest, near his heart. “Kasi sayong-sayo na ‘to.”
Her tears are continuously falling from her eyes. She just heard Richard declare his love for her. She knows the right words to say but she cannot say it. She knows all too well that her heart is screaming for the answer, but her tongue is betraying her.
“I’m not rushing you, Maya. I just want to express my feelings for you. I’ll be patient. I’ll be patient even if it means that I can get my heart broken. But it’s worth it. You’re worth it, Maya.” He said as he wipes her tears.
“I want you to remember everything that I just said. Everything. Because I mean every single word of it.”
Another month had passed. Richard has put an extra effort in everything he does for Maya. He is also very close to her kids now. Kulang na lang na tawagin siyang Daddy.
After Richard confessed to Maya, the latter finally figured out what she feels for him. She’s sure of it. She doesn’t care if she makes another mistake again because she’s sure that Richard will always be there with her.
Maya just arrived at the airport, and as expected, Richard is waiting for her near the lobby. His serious face disappeared when he saw her.
“Hi.” Richard said.
“Hi. Pasensya na kung medyo na late ako, nagka-turbulence kasi eh.”
“It’s okay. At least you’re safe. Let’s go?”
“Ay, Chard. Pwede bang dumaan tayo sa mall? May bibilhin lang ako para kay Doris. Pasasalamat ko kasi laging siya yung nagbabantay dun sa kambal.”
He grabbed her bag. “Sure.”
The two drove off to the mall. Unlike their journey when they had their first date, Maya is now talkative. She’s always telling Richard her flight adventures. And for exchange, she would ask him about his company.
They finally arrived at the mall. Richard always maintains his distance with Maya. He might be a few inches away from her, but he’s always keeping an eye for her. He never attempted to put his arm around Maya’s shoulder nor her waist and he didn’t even try holding her hand.
Maya decided to buy a perfume for Doris. She knew that it would really suit her.
“Where to now?” Richard asked.
“Uwi na tayo.” She answered.
Richard nodded, and then started to walk. Maya is a few steps behind him.
Then Richard felt a hand holding his.
He looked at his hand and saw a feminine hand that belongs to Maya.
When he looked at her, she just smiled at him.
“I love you, Richard.” She said.
He suddenly broke into this smile like his lips are going to tear apart.
“Tayo na?” He asked.
Maya only nodded.
“Oo nga eh!”
“Oo nga! Naku, isa pa, kundi babawiin – “
She didn’t have the chance to finish what she is saying because Richard engulfed her in his arms, embracing her tightly. He was about to kiss her when Maya stopped her.
“Hep hep, Chard. Nasa mall pa tayo, maraming taong magagalit, PDA kasi.”
He laughed. “Bitter lang sila, wala silang lovelife.”
She slapped his arm. “Umuwi na lang tayo.”
He kissed her forehead, he just can’t resist it. “Thank you Maya. You’ve made me the happiest man alive.”
She suddenly turned red. “O sya sya. Tama na. Tara na.”
“I love you Maya.”
“I love you, too Richard.”
It’s been four months since Maya and Richard officially became a couple. Richard is being called as “Tito Papa” of Maya’s kids. He would always visit them whenever he has the chance, it’s like those kids are his. And he knows that they will be – soon.
“Maya, can you go to the house tomorrow?” they are now seated at Maya’s couch in her condo.
“Bakit? Anong meron?”
“Alex is coming home tomorrow. She wants to meet you.”
“Ahh. Siya lang ba yung uuwi? Para matulungan ko sina Manang Fe kung magluluto man.”
He smirked. “You don’t really need to do that. She’s coming home with her boyfriend. Do you have time?”
She kissed him. “Oo naman. Basta para sa’yo.”
Alex finally arrived at Lim’s residence.
“KUYAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!” she screamed when she saw his older brother, Richard.
“Alex!!” The two hugged each other tightly.
“Kumusta ka na Kuya? Parang pumopogi ka ata!” Alex said.
“Eto, kakadating lang, bola na agad. By the way, I want you to meet Maya dela Rosa. Girlfriend ko. Maya, this is Alex, my sister.”
“Hi Maya!! I’ve heard a lot about you!” Alex approached her. “Ikaw na lang kasi yung bukambibig ni Kuya eh.”
“Stop it Alex. I thought you’re arriving with someone.”
“Yes. James is outside. He’s just getting our bags.”
Maya ‘s attention was caught at the name that was mentioned.
James?! Hindi, Maya. Ibang James ‘yan.
As if on cue, a man entered the house. Maya shivered when she saw him. She knew that body figure so well. And then the image finally became clear.
It’s like someone stabbed her in her heart when she figured out why she’s so familiar with the guy.
“Kuya, meet James Ventura, he’s a pilot in Royale Airlines. James, meet my Kuya, Richard Lim and his girlfriend, Maya dela Rosa.”
Maya felt that time stood still. She can’t believe that after seven years, she’ll get to see him again. The man who made her feel that she reached the end of her story. The father of her twins – James Ventura.