Admin Note: *Contributed Story* Please give credit and thanks to Fanfic_Newbie. This is a continuation to Meant to Be- parts 4 & 5.
A/N: Thank you for reading. Sorry medyo natagalan. Hope you like it.
Thank you to EBU admin
Christmas without Luke. He is back in the Philippines with his dad.
Bakit ko ba sinasali yung mga school breaks sa usapan. Now Maya is celebrating Christmas alone.
“Hi Luke. Merry Christmas baby”
“I miss you so much. What are you doing? You are at the beach? With Dad, Lola and Lolo.”
“Anybody else ?” Maya was fishing for information.. She was expecting Luke to mention a girl’s name.
“I knew it! Meron pang paiwan-iwan ng nakakakilig na note sa Paris…eh he is seeing someone pala” .. she thought
“Yaya Doris is here too” Luke said happily .
Napahiya si Maya sa sarili niya. Bakit ba niya naitanong pa iyon. May sariling buhay na si Richard. Kung ano man ang gawin niya, wala na siya doon.
Christmas at the beach house surrounded by family and loved ones.. She can only wish.. All the happy memories at that beach house came rushing back…but then, all the pain came as well.
Luke happily told his stories and once done, promptly gave the iPad to his dad.
“Merry Christmas Maya.”
“Merry Christmas din..Richard”
“How are you ? “Luke said, there is only me, him, Mom, Dad, Doris..but for the record.. “
Maya’s heart stopped. Shoot !! narinig niya, baka isipin chene-check ko siya.
“Joma is here at the beach house also. “ (Joma, is the family driver) Richard was teasing.
Maya was silent.
“Are you at the office? “
“Yes, nothing to do at home, kaya heto nasa second home.”
Maya missed Luke and Richard so much. She remembered the Christmases they celebrated together, as a family. Tears threatened to fall..
“O sige na Richard. I don’t want to take time your time away from Luke.. Hello na rin kay Mom and Dad. Kumusta kina Yaya Doris at kay Joma.. And please tell Luke to take care, be a good boy and listen to his dad.. and I love him so much.. Good bye. ”
Nagmamadaling pinatay ni Maya ang connection dahil tuluyan nang tumulo ang kanyang mga luha. She felt so alone. And damn that Richard! He looked so good!
But the Facetime connection ended and Richard was left staring at his face…
“I still want to talk with you… I miss you …. I miss us”. Richard whispered as he clutched the iPad close to his heart.
“What are you doing here? Is anything wrong? Is Luke sick? I just spoke with you a couple of days ago “ Hindi inaasahan ni Maya na makita ang kanyang mag-ama nang buksan ang pinto ng kanyang condo.
“You looked so sad and sounded so alone when we last spoke to you.. so we decided to fly back to the US to be with you.” Luke responded to his mom’s barrage of questions.
“O my baby. You are so sweet naman baby ko.” Maya hugged Luke.
“Mom, it was all dad’s idea.” Luke excitedly revealed how they hatched their surprise. “Dad immediately called his pilot friend Tito Pards after we spoke with you. Tito Pards helped us get airline tickets. Then Lolo and Lola helped us pack our bags. Kuya Joma took us to the airport.”
“What is wrong mom? Why are you crying? You do not like our surprise? “ Luke was concerned.
“Luke. Oh Luke “.. No words came out after that for she was sobbing uncontrollably… She can only hug him even more tightly.
After she got her composure back ..
With one hand on her heart, Maya thanked Richard for the surprise.
“Richard, do you have hotel reservations ? “ She was curious.
“Ummm.. . Lisa usually does my travel arrangements but it is Christmas vacation and I did not want to bother her.”
Maya was still waiting for an answer.
“And ? “ Richard usually answers direct to the point.. Bakit kaya maraming pasakalye ngayon?
“and …. we did not have time to check all the hotels close to your condo. We assumed all hotels must be packed already, given the Christmas holidays and all…..”
“Yes or No, Richard? “ Maya got impatient .
“I have known you for a long time Richard, I know when you are stalling..”
“Well, I was hoping to stay here. You know, to spend time with Luke (and you.. he whispered). If that is not a problem with you?“
Richard and Luke waited for Maya’s response with anticipation.
“Ok.. you are welcome to stay. .. Ihahanda ko yung guest bedroom.”
“YES !!” sigaw ng mag-ama.
Maya just shook her head and smiled in disbelief.
Richard mouthed “Thank you”.
Maya could only nod to acknowledge the thank you.
For a week, they were like a family again. They went to Disneyland and Legoland.. They spent time watching silly movies at Maya’s condo. They had a picnic at a beach in San Diego. One day. They drove to Sta Barbara to enjoy the sights of the old mission.
The whole time Maya was civil to Richard, she did not want Luke to have ideas that his parents are getting back together. But once in a while, she would unconsciously let her guard down and relax. These were the moments that would make Richard smile. He knew in his heart that there is small chance that she still loved him but she is scared. Patience is a virtue Richard would remind himself.
Maya carefully explained to Luke that his Dad was only on vacation. It was by no means a permanent arrangement. She did not want to get his hopes us….or get her hopes up.
Richard on the other hand, was counting his “Pogi Points.”
New Year’s eve. Richard’s last night.
The Lim family went to the New Year’s Party sponsored by Maya’s company.
Maya wore a simple black lace cocktail dress and very little makeup. Richard wore a dark gray suit, basic shirt in white and thin tie.
Richard hardly noticed all the other women at the party. Maya cannot help but steal glances at Richard the whole night.
Maya introduced Richard to her colleagues. Most of whom know Richard because they worked in the same industry.
“James, you remember Richard?” Maya asked.
Nag-iba ang mukha ni Richard habang kinakamayan si James.
“Yes, Mr. Richard Lim, we meet again. The last time, I believe was in Paris.” Parang nanunuya si James.
“Yes, it was in Paris. Excuse me, I just need to find Luke.”
“Girl! Ano pa kasi ang hinihintay..ayan na oh.. Kung ayaw mo, mine na lang siya!! ” Sinabi ni James sa kaibigan nang makalayo si Richard.
“Huy, marinig ka niyan. Mabisto ka” Saway ni Maya.
“Ang guapo naman kasi. Nakakagigil!! With matching closed eyes at pretending to pinch Richard’s cheeks.
Richard and Maya mingled but they ended up talking to each other most of the night.
“There is something amiss with James. I cannot put a finger to it.. Parang iba siya.”
“Really ? he is the same sweet old James in college” Maya had to suppress her smile.
Maya was already waiting. Richard had Luke in tow and was on their way to the designated spot 10 minutes to midnight. Prinomise nila kay Luke na sasalubungin nila ang bagong taon na magkakasama.
At the stroke of midnight.
“Happy New Year Luke! ” Maya greeted her son an promptly kissed and hugged him. “Happy New Year son! ” Richard kissed and hugged Luke.
Luke was waiting for his parents to kiss. “What? No kiss? ” he asked. “Faster, Dad kiss Mom, Mom kiss Dad”
Walang nagawa ang dalawa kundi sundin si Luke. Hinalikan ni Richard si Maya sa magkabilang pisngi at binati siya ng “Happy New Year, this will be the best year ever, Maya. I promise.”
” Group hug, Group hug !! ” Luke instructed his parents.
As they prepared to leave the party. Richard said his goodbye to Luke. For sure, he will be asleep when they reach home. Maya had already prepared Luke for his father’s departure.
Neither Richard nor Maya spoke during the drive home. Each deep in thought. Each hoping the night would not end. When they finally reached Maya’s designated condo parking spot. Richard turned off the engine. With his hands on the steering wheel, he looked straight ahead. Maya had her head down staring at her hands on her lap. They sat for there for what seem like an eternity. Then ..
“Thank you.” This is all what Maya had managed to say. Maya wanted to say so much more, how she still love him, that she never stopped loving him … that she misses him.. she longed for him … but she was scared and confused. She would catch him looking at her and was convinced that he misses her too. She hoped that he loved her. But she wanted for him to love her for who she is and not for how she looks.
“You are welcome, Maya.” This is all what Richard said. He wanted to say much more. “Epic fail ka talaga Richard! Ano ba yan, perfect moment na sana” He blamed himself for missing the moment. But he sensed that she was not ready. He has not earned enough Pogi Points.
Luke was already sleeping in the car. Richard had to carry him to his bed.
Maya watched from the bedroom door, one arm folded across her chest and the other hand covering her lips. Her heart hurting..
Richard carefully laid Luke down on his bed. He proceeded to remove Luke’s shoes and put on his jammies.
He kissed and hugged his sleeping boy and said “I love you, Luke” but he was looking at the boy’s mom.
One blissful week of vacation was over.
What a pleasant surprise, an email from Maya. Isip ni Richard nang makita ang kanyang inbox. Excited niya itong binuksan.
Thank you for the beautiful flowers and chocolates you sent for Valentine’s day. Luke and I also enjoyed the dinner date you arranged for us.
(Wow ! Dagdag ng 100 Pogi Points .. Nakangiti si Richard)
Thank you for all the time and effort you spent with us. I know that you are a very busy man and every minute you spend with us you have to make up by working longer hours.
(100 Pogi Points more .. My tactic is really working)
Luke said that you are arranging a trip to Hawaii for the three of us for my birthday. That is really sweet Richard. It would be great bonding time.
(Keep it coming, keep it coming…. Abot tenga na ang ngiti ni Richard.)
I checked my calendar. I am sorry to disappoint but I will not be able to make it.
You see, I met someone I like and for our relationship to work out, I need your help.
(Unti-unting nawala ang ngiti sa mga labi ni Richard. Nakakunot ang noo niya habang patuloy ang pagbasa ng email.)
It is hard for me to do this to you when I see that you are trying your best to win me back. But I need time to sort out my feelings and to be clear about what I want for myself and Luke.
Your presence confuses me. With you I feel a jumble of emotions from happiness to sadness, excitement to loneliness.. And it scares me. I don’t want to be scared anymore. I want to be secure in the knowledge that I am loved and appreciated for who I am and for what I can become.
You are my first love, the father of my son. No one can take that away from you. Thank you for all those experiences.
Do not worry, Luke’s happiness and well-being is foremost in my mind. I will not do anything to harm him or to harm his relationship with you.
Thank you for your understanding. Take care of yourself.
BTW: I really need you to sign the annulment papers. Atty Gee will have them picked up at your office once you have signed it.
He had to read the email several times before the message sank in. Game over, Richard.
Richard wanted to hand deliver a copy of the signed annulment papers to Maya. He asked Atty Gee not to tell Maya.
Akmang pakatok si Richard sa pinto ng condo ni Maya siya namang paglabas ni Simon, Maya at ni Luke.
“Dad!!!” Sabay yakap sa ama.
“Richard? ” Good timing ka talaga ..Ang isip ni Maya. Medyo toxic siya kasi di dumating ang baby sitter kaya kailangan isama si Luke sa dinner date nila ni Simon.
“I won’t be long Maya. I just wanted to drop this envelope off.” Inabot ni Richard ang sobre sa asawa.
” Hello, My name is Richard Lim.” Pakilala niya sa blue-eyed blonde na kasama nina Maya.
“Hello, I am Simon.”
Nagkamayan ang dalawa.
“Your reputation precedes you Richard. All good things I assure you.”
Richard looked at Maya, who was blushing. She knows how hard Richard was trying to be civil and pleasant.
“I see that you are on your way out. I will not be in your way.”
“Actually Richard, sorry to ask but are you busy tonight? The sitter did not show up so..” Maya was embarrassed to ask.
“No worries, Maya. I am free.”
“Nice meeting you Simon. ” Come on kiddo. what do you want to do?” Aya ni Richard kay Luke habang papasok sa bahay ni Maya.
He cannot get himself to say “have a good time” sa dalawang mag-dadate.
Tulog na si Luke, at nanonood ng TV si Richard, pero panay ang check sa bintana.
Ano ba yan, 10pm, wala pa sila. Dapat sana sinabi kong hanggang 9pm lang ako available para umuwi sila ng maaga.
1030pm na nang makauwi sina Maya. Punta kaagad sa pinto si Richard. Naudlot ang good night kiss ni Simon kay Maya nang biglang buksan ni Richard ang pinto. (200 Pogi Points Richard!)
Maya opened the envelope and saw the signed documents. Parang kirot ang kanyang pus.
Ito ba talaga ang gusto ko? Tanong ni Maya sa sarili.
Napansin ni Maya ang note na iniwan ni Richard.
“If you love someone… let her go, if she comes back to you, it is truly meant to be.”
Hoping against hope that we will be together again.
True to his word, Richard kept his distance. He would regularly chat with Luke and when time permits visit him. He is careful to talk to Maya only when absolutely necessary. Richard would get his “Maya news” from Luke and from the MRO industry insiders, particularly James. She is fast becoming the indispensable in big MRO projects.
Just like Richard, Maya would prod Luke for “Richard news”. She would also read any MRO industry news, in the hopes of finding out what Richard is up to
Ganito ba talaga ito kahirap? Pareho sila ng naiisip at nararamdaman. Miss nila ang isa’t-isa.
Bakit kaya napatawag ang mommy ni Richard. Tanong ni Maya sa sarili nang makita ang caller id sa cellphone niya.
“Maya. Kumusta na iha..”
“Mabuti naman po mommy. ”
“Ipagpatawad mo na ang pagtawag ko pero may gusto lang sana akong itanong. ”
“Sige po mommy, ano po iyon?”
“Iha, hindi sa nanghihimasok ako. Ano ba ang nangyari nitong mga huling mga buwan ?”
“Hindi ko po maintindihan… ”
“Si Richard kasi, parang wala sa sarili. laging tahimik, halos di na kumakain at tutok lang sa trabaho. Dati rati laging nagtatanong sa akin kung magugustuhan mo ang kanyang binabalak ng sorpresa para sa inyo. Laging may kwento tungkol kay Luke at tungkol sa iyo. Kayo ni Luke bukang bibig. Lahat ng mga kaibigan niya ay nagrereklamo sa akin na wala ng daw ibang balitang alam kung hindi ang mga accomplishments mo. Congratulations pala sa iyong promotion Maya. ”
“Salamat po mommy…”
“Ngayon halos hindi ko na nakikita. Noong minsan, nahuli kong pinanonood ang video ng kasal ninyo at ang mga video ng family vacations ninyo.. Gusto ko lang sanang malaman kung bakit siya nagkakaganito. Nandiyan ka pa ba, anak?”
“Po.. Opo.. ” Maya did not want to let her mother-in-law hear that she was already crying.
“Richard, it is over” This was the cryptic text message James sent to Richard.
Richard can only smile and think… It is time to bring my family home.