Maya sprinted out of Emman’s car the moment it halted in front of the hospital. She pushed the doors of the emergency room and anxiously turned around to look for someone she knows. After a few seconds of pacing back and forth, she finally saw a face. His head was a little bit bowed down but Maya could clearly see the pain in his face.
“Jeff!” Maya called as the tears continues to stream on her face. She saw the man lift his head up and walked to reach her. Maya hugged him the moment they were near each other. “Nasaan na si Richard? Ano na raw nangyari?” She muttered.
“I .. I don’t know Ate Maya.” Jeff replied as his own tears fell from his eyes. “I came as soon as the hospital called me. Tapos .. tapos nung nakarating ako dito, nakita ko si Kuya Richard na walang malay. That mere moment reminded me of what happened to Kuya James. I honestly don’t know what will happen, Ate Maya.” He continued.
Maya just hugged Jeff again. Both of them were incapable of doing anything for Richard. All they can do is to keep hoping and to pray that Richard would be fine. Jeff was the first one who collected his self and saw Maya still crying. He encouraged her to come with him outside of the emergency room to the halls where they can sit as they wait for Richard.
Emman saw them at that state and joined the two of them. Maya hugged Emman the moment he sat beside her and cried harder. “Si .. si Richard?” Emman asked Jeff.
“He’s still inside.” Jeff answered as he wiped the tears on his face. Emman nodded at him and rubbed Maya’s back as she continued to weep. “Emman, ikaw muna ang bahala kay Ate Maya. I have to answer this call.” Jeff said and stood up to answer his ringing phone.
Emman turned to her weeping friend. “Girl, tahan na. Nasa loob pa si Richard. Hindi ‘yun tutulad kay James.” He said, trying to pacify Maya. “Huy, Maya.”
“Eh kasi naman Emman eh. Ganito rin kay James dati. Gantong ganto. Nung dumating ako, nasa emergency room din siya tapos .. tapos nung lumabas yung doktor, wala na. Wala na siya.” Maya said as she wiped the tears on her face but she kept crying. “Paano na lang kung ganito rin ‘yon?” She asked.
“Roomie, hindi ‘yan. Ano ka ba? Think positive!” Emman said. He was trying to encourage Maya but even his hope was starting to crumble down, too.
“Alam mo, Emman, parang ang malas ko lagi pag nagmamahal no? Dadalawa na nga lang ‘yung lalaking minahal ko, nawala naman pareho.” Maya said. “Pagkatapos nito, ano na naman ako? Tulala na naman ako sa condo tapos gabi-gabi na namang iiyak. Ang buong akala ko nung nakilala ko si Richard, mababago na lahat, na mababago na ako. Nabago nga, babalik din naman pala sa dati.”
Emman reached for his friends hands and squeezed them. “Maya! Ang Maya na kilala ko, hindi basta-basta sumusuko ng ganito. Hindi ka babalik sa dati. Hindi yan promise! Masyado pang maaga para magsalita ka ng ganito.”
The two were interrupted when Jeff ran to them. “Ate Maya. The doctors are calling us. Gising na raw si Kuya Richard!” He said. Emman and Maya immediately stood up and entered the emergency room again. Jeff talked to one of the doctors and he led them to where Richard is.
The doctor parted the white curtain separated the patients and saw a man lying on the bed. Maya rushed to his side when it dawned to her that it was Richard. His hair was messy, a bandage was wrapped around his head, bruises were found on his face and his chinky-eyes were missing his trademark eyeglasses.
“R-Richard.” Maya whispered. Jeff got a chair for her and made her sit beside him. Maya’s hands were trembling as she reached to touch Richard’s face. More tears fell from her eyes when she felt Richard respond to it. Slowly, his eyes opened and turned to look at her. “Richard!” She exclaimed and leaned in to hug Richard.
“Ouch! Hey, hey, it hurts!” Richard said making Maya to lean back instantly. “Sorry, sorry!” She muttered but kept her head near to him.
Richard smiled at her. “It’s okay.” He said, barely audible. “Who are you?” He asked. Maya’s eyes widened and she turned to look at Jeff and Emman who were also surprised at what Richard said. Jeff turned to the doctor and asked if something is wrong with him but before the doctor could answer, they heard Richard’s laughter.
His laugh was soft but it was filled by his character. “No, no, nothing’s wrong with me.” He said. “Sure, my body aches pero may I ask where my eyeglasses are? Ang labo kasi nung paningin ko, I can’t really tell who’s who.”He reasoned out.
Maya hit Richard’s arm that made him shout. Richard groped his arm as he felt so much pain at the area where Maya hit him. “Damn it! Why would you do that?” He exclaimed. He was about to scream something again when he felt something liquid on his neck. It was then when he noticed that a head was near his and it kept on weeping. “Maya?”
“Kung may balak kang mag-suicide, sana wag mo nang gayahin si James! Masakit eh!” She said, making Richard chuckle. “Maiintindihan ko pa kung inatake ka sa puso o kaya uminom ka na lang ng lason pero yung ganitong aksidente, masyadong mahirap eh! Kasi .. kasi hindi ko agad malalaman kung buhay ka pa o mamamatay ka na!” She continued.
“What can I do? Simula ata nung nalipat sa’kin yung puso ni James, naging idol ko na siya. Halos lahat na yata ng yapak niya sinundan ko.” Richard teased.
“Sa sitwasyon mong yan Kuya, nakakapagbiro ka pa?” Jeff asked.
“Of course. I have to make every second count if I’m about to die right?” He said in a serious tone but he wanted to laugh so hard with the look on everyone’s faces when his words sank to them.
“H-hindi ka pa safe Papa Richard?” Emman asked.
Before Richard could speak again, the doctor butted in. “I can assure you that Richard would live.” He said. “May mga bruises lang siya and some fractures but not too serious na kailangan niya ng surgery. It was really a miracle na sa isang aksidenteng gano’n, ito lang yung nakuha niyang sugat.” He continued.
“Someone’s looking after me, Doc.” Richard said.
“I guess there is.” The doctor replied. “Anyway, you’re room is being prepared at the moment. Mamaya-maya lang din, ita-transfer ka na rin don.”
“Thank you, Doc.” Jeff said.
“Ah, and Richard. I’m sorry but you have to get another pair of eyeglasses. Nabasag ‘yung iyo dun sa aksidente eh.” The doctor said.
Richard laughed. “It’s okay Doc. Thank you.” He said and the doctor left. Jeff went to the side where Maya is. “You know, Kuya Richard, parang mas lalo kang nagiging si Kuya James eh.”
Richard just smiled at him. “Your Kuya James was a very admirable person, Jeff. Don’t ever forget him.” He said. “But seriously? Para na ‘kong siya? Eh mas magaling pa akong mag joke kaysa dun eh.” And after he said that, he felt a slight pain in his chest that made him laugh. “Alright, alright, mas magaling mag-joke si James.” He said and the pain magically disappeared.
The nurses came and told them that they were already bringing Richard to his private room. As they were preparing the transfer, Maya was still holding Richard’s hand tightly and never made any move to let go of it.
“Maya, you can let go of my hand now.” Richard said. Maya shook her head. “Hindi. Hindi kita bibitawan.” She said, making Richard chuckle. “I’m not going anywhere.”
“Kahit na.” She said. Richard just smiled at her. “Come closer, Maya.” He said. Maya leaned in and was surprised when Richard put his other hand on her nape to close their distance. Richard’s lips landed on hers. “I’m not leaving you again. I promise. We’ll grow old and grey together. I will never ever leave you.” He whispered.
Maya’s tears started forming again and Richard wiped it before it even fall. “I told you that I hate it when you cry ‘di ba?” He said and Maya nodded. “Sige na. I’ll see you in the room.” He added and kissed her again. “I love you.”
“I love you, too.” Maya whispered back.
“Ah, Ma’am, ililipat na po namin si Sir sa room niya. Sumunod na lang po kayo.” The nurse said and pushed Richard’s bed.
“Ate Maya, pupunta muna ako sa bahay ni Kuya Richard. I’ll just get his things tapos babalik na rin ako.” Jeff said.
“Ako rin, roomie. Pupunta muna ako sa market para ibili si Papa Richard ng prutas. Tapos may binigay din na reseta si doc, ako na muna yung bibili.” Emman said.
“Dumiretso ka na sa room ni Kuya. I’m sure you two need to talk.” Jeff said and the both of them left her.
Maya started walking to go to Richard’s room when a nurse called her. “Ah, Ma’am, ito po yung na-retrieve na gamit ni Mr. Lim.” She said and handed Maya Richard’s phone and a small black velvet box.
“Uhm, thank you.” She said and the nurse left her there. Maya’s heart pounded when she turned her gaze to the box she’s holding with her right hand. She was about to open it when she was interrupted by the buzzing of his phone. It was Roberto who’s calling. Maya hurriedly answered it.
“Hello Richard! Are you alright? Frank called me and said you had an accident. Was it true?” Roberto’s worried voice spoke on the other line. “Ricky?”
“Tito, si Maya po ito.” Maya said.
“Ah, Maya. Where’s Richard? Is he safe?” Roberto continued to ask. “Totoo bang naaksidente siya?”
“Opo Tito.” She answered.
“Holy – Where is he? Is he alright?” Roberto kept on asking.
“Ayos na raw po siya sabi po nung doktor. Papunta pa lang po ako sa room niya.” She calmly said.
“Thank goodness!” Roberto said, sighing in relief. “Esmeralda and I were so worried when Frank informed us that his car crashed. I’m never letting him drive again.”
“Naku Tito, kung marunong po akong magmaneho, ako na po ang magmamaneho para sa kanya.” Maya said.
“Thank you, hija. Don’t worry; his mom and I were boarding the first flight back to Manila. Gusto ni Esmeralda’ng personal na sermunan si Richard.” He said. “I have to hang up now. Mag-iimpake pa kami ni Esme.”
“Sige po Tito. Ite-text ko na lang po kung saang hospital kami saka po yung room number niya.” Maya said.
“Okay. Thank you so much Maya. Please tell Ricky to get well soon and that we’re coming home.” Roberto said and then he hung up.
Maya smiled as she put the phone down. It was still lit up when she got a clear view of the phone’s wallpaper. Her breath hitched when she saw that the wallpaper was a picture of her. She was sleeping on the picture but what caught her attention is that it was inside a jeepney. Then she realized that it was that moment when they first saw each other. It was an unofficial meeting but it was the first time she laid her eyes on him. It was that simple moment that changed both of their lives.
Richard was sleeping when Maya entered the room. She was smiling as she sat on the chair beside his bed and reached for his hand. She was staring at Richard’s face. It was beaten up but for her, he’s still has that handsome face she would stare for eternity.
Maya leaned in and gave him a kiss on his cheek. It was then when she noticed that Richard’s right foot was wrapped up with bandage and so was right arm. She suddenly felt guilty when she remembered that she hit him in his right arm. Masakit ata yun.
She scooted closer to him and placed her head near his shoulder. “I’m sorry.” She whispered. She closed her eyes and joined Richard in sleeping.
Pain. It was all Richard could feel from the moment he woke up. He felt it through every inch of his body, especially on his right arm. Ah, yes. I crashed.
Why can’t your calming powers turn into healing powers, James? He thought. He can’t actually remember how he crashed his car, but he remembers his conversation with James. He now felt much closer to the former owner of his heart.
He slowly opened his eyes and saw someone beside him. He smiled at the familiar scent that lingered. He knew it was Maya. He and his heart knew it. Sayang at hindi natuloy yung proposal.
Richard’s eyes widened when he remembered that he was about to propose. He kept turning his head to look for that black velvet box he was dying to show to her. Ah great, do I have to buy a new one? And then the waiting period would definitely kill me.
Because of his small movements, Maya woke up. Richard gave him a smile like he’s trying to hide something. Maya smiled back and gave him a kiss on his lips. “Hi Ricky ko! Ayos ka na?” She happily greeted.
“Ricky?” Richard asked.
Maya frantically nodded as she sat properly. “Yun na’ng itatawag ko sa’yo. Wag kang aangal.” She said and kissed him again.
“Okay. Kung lagi ba akong may kiss, hindi na talaga ako aangal pa.” He playfully said. “Where’s Jeff and Emman?”
“Ah, si Jeff, kukuha daw ng damit mo. Tapos si Emman, bumili ng makakain mo saka g gamot.” Maya said as she stood up to fetch him a glass of water. Richard frowned when he saw that Maya was still wearing her dress that was intended for their dinner.
“I’m sorry naaksidente ako.” Richard said.
“Hm? Hindi mo kailangang mag-sorry.” Maya said as she returned on her seat. “Well, oo kasi pinakaba mo ko pero aksidente ‘yon. Hindi natin nape-predict kung kailan nangyayari.” She said. “Ah, tumawag nga pala si Tito Roberto kanina sa phone mo. Ang sabi niya uuwi raw sila gawa ang gusto ni Tita Esmeralda, sermonan ka ng personal.”
Richard chuckled as Maya helped him to sit a bit. “Where’s my phone? I gave to call them back.” Maya handed him his phone and assisted Richard to drink some water.
“Ikaw ha. Stalker ka.” Maya said earning her a curious look from Richard. “Why?”
“Nakita ko yung wallpaper mo.” Maya said. Richard smiled and showed her his phone. “This?” He asked and Maya nodded.
“I made a vow after my heart transplant. Ang sabi ko sarili ko, from that moment, I will only devote my life to the woman I knew I will love the moment I laid my eyes on her.” He said. “And that was you.” Using his uninjured hand, he reached for Maya’s and kissed it. “I love you, Maya. I’m not letting you go, okay? You’re stuck with me, if it’s okay with you.”
“Oo naman!” Maya said and hugged Richard. “I love you Ricky.” She said. While Maya was hugging her, Richard saw something on the table beside his bed. It was that black velvet box. He doesn’t care if Maya already saw it. He will still do what he intended to do. He just needs to find the right time. And he knew he would wait just for Maya.
A/N : We’re getting closer and closer to the ending! Sorry po sa mga typos. Marami pa po kasi akong school works na dapat gawin pero nasa bakasyon pa po ang utak ko. (whuuut?) Thank you po sa patuloy na pagsubaybay sa kwentong ito. Thank you thank you!! God bless po sa lahat!