“Just choose anything you want. Ako na bahalang magbayad.” Richard said to Maya. They were now inside the mall, strolling around. Before leaving, Richard called up Jerry to ask if Maya can go shopping. After checking Maya’s condition, Jerry gave his approval but said that she should not push her leg too far.
“Sigurado ka? Eh ang mamahal ng mga damit dito eh.” Maya said as she walked beside him. “Ayaw mo sa ukay-ukay?”
“What?” Richard chuckled. “Hindi na. Saka this’ll be like my treat. Nakuha ko nga yung deal ‘di ba?” He said.
“Parang sobra naman ‘to. Saka ikaw naman yung may gawa no’n eh, hindi naman kailangan na ilibre mo pa ko.” Maya replied.Although grateful, she still felt that what Richard was doing is just too much. She was already thankful to him by saving her life, by letting her live in his condo and now he was going to buy her clothes.
“Can you just say thank you instead? Besides, it’s not just me who has to get the credit to all of my work. Tinulungan mo kaya ako.” He said. Maya knitted his brows. “Eh? Saan?”
Richard laughed before he could even answer her. “Na-inspire ako ng todo do’n sa drawing mo, natapos ko tuloy agad.” He teased and Maya just glared at him. “Sige, mang-asar ka pa. Pinapatawa lang naman kita no’n eh. Sobra na kayang nakakunot yung noo mo.” Maya defended.
Richard nodded and then he smiled at her. “I know.” He said and put his hand on the small of Maya’s back. “You did help me. Kaya I’m repaying you. And also for the fact that I knew Gina’s clothes wouldn’t last that long. And don’t tell me na maglalaba ka kasi hindi talaga kita papayagan. Sige na, mamili ka na nang matapos na tayo. No more arguments.” He said as they continued to walk with his hand remained in that position. Maya felt her cheeks got warmer at his small gesture. She knew that he was just acting as a friend but somehow, she felt something more.
After a few hours, the two of them walked with Richard holding Maya’s shopping bags. He was surprised that after their little talk, Maya evolved into a shopaholic. She chose different sort of clothes and promised that she will pay Richard whenever she got her memory back. She even bought new clothes for Richard since she seldom sees him in his casual clothes.
Richard didn’t actually mind paying. He’s been saving money ever since he started working. He doesn’t really have anything to spend it for, except for his car and his condo. In the end, all of the payments from his projects were stored up in the bank and this is the time where he will be spending it again.
As they were walking, Maya abruptly stopped. “Oh? What’s wrong?” Richard worriedly asked. “Is it about your leg?” Maya shook her head frantically and turned to him. “M-may naalala ako.”
Richard’s eyes widened. “What is it?” He asked. Maya slowly smiled at him and jumped with glee. “Richard! Naalala ko na yung date birthday ko!” She happily said. “Next week siya!” She continued to jump up and down as she smiled. Richard couldn’t help but be affected by her smile. It was just too contagious. Maya was so happy that she forgot that she has a broken leg and when she landed from her jump, she felt pain in it.
“Maya!” Richard exclaimed and dropped all the bags he was holding to put his arms around her. “Are you okay?” Maya nodded but pain was written all over her face. “Tss. Dapat hindi ka nagtatalon. Do you want to go home now?”
Maya shook her head. “Mamaya na. Ayos lang ako.” She said and tried to stand up properly. When she did, she still felt pain but it was slowly easing away. “Sorry.” She muttered.
“I thought we had a deal about sorries?” Richard said as his lopsided smile is plastered on his face. Maya’s breath hitched. Richard’s smile was just to die for. The smile really suited him that his face lightens up whenever he does that. “Maya?”
“Ah, ano .. oo, sorry. Ay hindi! Hindi ako nagso-sorry!” She stammered. She might’ve been staring at him for a while to make him get her attention. When she looked back at him, he was just laughed at her. “We really need to have a punishment about the ‘Sorry Agreement.” He amusedly said. “Can you walk now?”
Maya nodded as Richard helped her walk a couple of steps then he reached for the shopping bags again. “We should eat.” He said and without even consulting Maya, he entered a fast food chain. He made sure that Maya was seated properly before he sat on his chair.
“Can we eat here? I hope you don’t mind na sa fast food chain lang tayo. Kailangan ko nang magtipid. Ang dami mong nabili eh.” He teased.
“Ikaw kasi eh. Dito pa tayo namili.” Maya replied.
“If I know na may pagka-shopaaholic ka pala, I would gladly accept the whole ukay thing.” He said, making both of them laugh. “But I don’t mind. I had fun actually.” He added and gave her that smile again. Maya’s world stopped again. She doesn’t even know when she started admiring that simple smile. Richard’s voice brought her back from her reverie. “I’ll just order something tapos babalik muna ako sa kotse ko, ilalagay ko lang ‘tong shopping bags.” He said and Maya just nodded.
As if completely under a trance, Maya watched Richard as he moved. Her eyes fixed on him as he ordered at the counter and before he went out, Richard turned to look at her and smiled at her. Maya smiled back widely.
Maya was left alone at the table as she waited for Richard. But it seemed like she was not alone as Richard invaded her mind. She just couldn’t forget that smile. When she realized that she was smiling like a fool, she quickly brushed her thoughts off.
“Maya, grateful ka lang sa kanya kaya ka ganito.”
She said to herself. She felt weird that she’s been thinking of Richard. Maya took a deep breath to calm herself. She decided to shift her thoughts somewhere where he is not there. Then she smiled. She finally knows when her birthday is. She had a hunch that shopping triggered it somehow but nevertheless, she was happy that her memories are starting to come back.
They started eating when Richard came back with Maya scolding herself every time she notices the smiles Richard gives. She kept telling herself that if she wants to bring the little boy out of Richard, she must get used to seeing those smiles.
“I found the best punishment for the Sorry Agreement.” Richard said. “Ano?” Maya replied, feeling quite giddy about their whole treaty. “Whenever one of us disobeys the agreement, may karapatan yung isa na utusan yung nag-sorry.”
Maya laughed. This is the first time she’d seen him acting like a child. “Sige ba!” Richard chuckled and reached for a tissue paper. He got a pen in his pocket and started writing on it. When he was done, he pushed the paper in front of Maya. “Sign it.” He said.
Maya laughed while she read what Richard wrote. It was their agreement with the punishment. Under it was their names with Richard signature. She smiled and signed the paper. When she was about to return it to Richard, she noticed what her signature looks like.
“Richard, pirma ko nga talaga kaya ‘to?” She asked as she showed him her signature. Richard reached for it and looked at it intently. “The way I signed looks so familiar to me.” She added.
“It says here MDR.” Richard said. “Maybe it is. Pero don’t push it. Babalik din yan.” He added. He pulled out his wallet and slid the paper inside. “I’m keeping this. Para may proof.” He added making Maya laugh. She has a feeling that she’s slowly getting her job done.
After eating, they decided to stroll for a bit. As they were walking, Maya stopped in front of a store. Richard almost panicked when he noticed that Maya was not behind him. Relief flooded him when he saw her standing outside a store, with her gaze fixed on something.
Richard shook his head with a smile. He really finds Maya amusing. Good thing that his feeling of awkwardness to her disappeared. The amount he spent today was nothing compared to the happiness that Maya gave him. Before she came to his life, he seldom smiles, he seldom laughs and he seldom talks and now, it all changed.
He started walking to her and saw her staring at a camera. It was a DSL-R one. “Maya?” He said. Maya immediately turned to him. “Ay sorry. Ang ganda kasi nung camera eh.” She said. Richard just smiled at her with a brow lifted up. “Bakit?” She asked.
Richard chuckled before he spoke. “You broke our agreement. You said the ‘s’ word.” Maya’s hands lifted to his mouth as he continued to laugh. “So I guess you owe me one punishment.”
“Sige na sige na. Ano yung punishment?”Maya asked. Richard shrugged. “I don’t know. Mag-iisip muna ako.” He said and then Maya continued to look at the camera. “You have a thing for cameras?” He asked.
Maya shrugged. “Ewan ko. Oo ata? Kasi feeling ko tinatawag ako nung camera.” She said and Richard just nodded. “I’m also like that with my papers. I have that feeling that they’re calling me and they’re telling me that I should start sketching.” He said.
“Tara na Richard? Uwi na tayo.” She just said. Richard nodded but he can see that Maya was still taking glances at the camera she was looking at earlier.
The mall was crowded because of a band’s tour at the center of the mall. Richard’s car was parked on the opposite side so they have to go through those people. As they walked through the sea of people, Richard was so concerned of Maya. He was afraid that someone might bump her leg or she would stumble. Without having second thoughts, he reached for Maya’s hand and held it tightly.
Maya’s head shot at him with a confused look. Her heart started pounding loudly as she felt Richard’s hand around hers. “I’ll catch you if you fall okay? Just hold my hand.” He said to her. Maya nodded even though she could feel her heart in her throat. She was completely surprised by what he just did.
When they got out of the pool of people, they continued walking until they reached outside. Richard’s hand was still holding hers as they walked. “Uhm, Richard .. yung … yung kamay ko.” Maya said. Richard looked at her and gave her the smile that made Maya’s breath hitch. His gaze shifted to her and to their hands.
“This is your punishment for not following the agreement.” He said and tugged her hand until they reached his car. Richard drove in silence and when they reached the condo building, after Richard got the shopping bags, he reached for Maya’s hand again. He just gave Maya a smile again when he saw the confused look on her face. Since the two of them are already tired, they headed straight to their rooms when they reached Richard’s unit.
Richard couldn’t explain what he was feeling inside. He knew that he just did that just to guide her in walking but he actually felt some contentment just by holding her hand. He was not intending to hold it again when they reached his condo but he felt the urge to do it again.
Maya, on the other hand, was rolling on her bed. It was confirmed – she has a crush on him. She was feeling so giddy as Richard held her hand. She knew it was that kilig even though she has amnesia. And now, she couldn’t wait to wake up the next morning knowing that Richard would always be the first face she’s going to see.
“Kung gano’n ba naman lagi ang punishment, edi lagi na akong magso-sorry!”
A/N : Busy lang po 🙂 Happy reading.