This is a continuation to First Love, Last Love – part 25
A/N: This is not the finale. Pasensya na muna dito at bitin.
The week after Richard’s proposal, the news about Richard and Maya’s engagement spread at the LAS office like wildfire.
It started on a Monday morning when Maya was having a break at the employee lounge. She was taking coffee when Chris, her admin. staff came into the lounge to also have a break. Chris noticed her engagement ring at it sparkled when it caught a ray of light when she lifted her cup.
The ring dazzled such that Chris curiously asked. “Wow, Maya, I love your ring.”
“Thank you.” Maya just smiled.
“Hmmm. Parang hindi ordinary ring yan, ha. Is that from someone?” Chris sat down on the table where Maya was seated.
“Yes.” She confirmed but not wanting to give away anything. She was not sure if she wants to share her happiness yet with others outside her family.
“Uyyy, pa secret ang peg… Who gave that to you?.. I am sure yung sender ng mga flowers last week, ano?” With her tone of voice, Chris seemed very excited with this development.
“Hmm. Yes.” Just another short response from Maya.
“Yieee.. Sabi ko na nga ba, may mangyayaring development sa love life mo. Maya, mag-share ka naman. Sino ang nagbigay n’yan, sige na.”
“Chris, why is it that you are so interested?”
“Kasi may guess ako who gave that to you. Sige na, mag-share ka naman. Ano pa’t staff mo ako at close tayo if you can’t tell me this wonderful story.” She said excitedly.
“Eh kung sabihin ko ba, what’s in it for me? Or what’s in it for you?”
“Naku sa’yo wala siguro except sharing the good news. But for me, I may win a bet” She didn’t intend to reveal the secret to Maya but somehow her mouth and her brain didn’t coordinate well.
“Anong bet? Anong bet? Chris, magsabi ka ng tutuo?” Maya’s tone suddenly became authoritative.
“Ah… eh… naku paano ba ito. Actually, it’s not about you directly but it’s about you. Ano ba ‘to, pati ako nalilito na. Anyway, sige na sabihin mo na sinong boyfriend mo at ng matapos na ang pag-iisip ko.”
“The ring came from me.” Both Maya and Chris were caught in a surprise.
They didn’t realize that Richard has been sitting on the first table near the lounge’s entrance.
“Sir Richard, from you?” Chris asked to clarify.
“Yes, I gave it to her.” Richard rephrased his answer. He was smiling as he declared it.
“Yes, panalo ako!” Chris was overjoyed. “Thanks Maya, panalo ang Team Maya.”
“Anong Team Maya?” Richard and Maya asked at the same time. “Chris, what is this all about?” Now, it was Richard who was curious as he moved to the table where the two ladies were seated.
“Naku, Sir Richard, ‘wag ka magagalit ha? Pwede, please?”
“It’s okay Chris” Maya reassured her.
“Kasi, dito sa office, we were wondering who is the latest girlfriend of Sir Richard. When Maya started working here, we thought bagay kayo pero meron ding sabi hindi kasi nandyan si Stephanie. So may pustahan kami, may Team Maya at may Team Stephanie. Syempre, Team Maya ako, obvious ba?” Chris started spilling the story.
“Ah, ganoon, eh sino naman ang Team Stephanie, aber? Maya asked seemingly annoyed.
“Naku Maya, it’s not important anymore. Matagal ng talo ang Team Stephanie. But within the Team Maya, may sub-pustahan pa.”
“At ano naman ‘yon?” Maya continued probing.
“We were waiting kung kailan magiging officially kayo ni Sir Richard. Kasi lagi kayong magkasama so parang we know that there was something. Ang sabi ko within 6 months from joining mo, sabi naman nung iba within 1 year. So, in short, ‘yung ang pustahan.”
“Chris, I am not amused with this type of conversation in this office. It makes me think that people here are not busy enough to gossip about these things. Especially you Chris, I didn’t expect that you would engage in this … in this betting game that you people have.” Richard’s tone became serious as well.
“Sorry, Sir Richard, Maya” She looked down as she apologized. Chris suddenly worried that their boss might get upset with them. His tiger mode is not something that anyone can handle except Maya.
Maya looked at Richard and signaled to him that it was okay. She was aware that talks were going around but didn’t realize that they even took it the next level of putting a bet on it.
Richard then said “Alright, I will let this pass this time.” He didn’t seem to be upset.
“Ay, Thank you po.” Chris gave a sigh of relief. Then, excused herself after apologizing. She was about to leave the lounge when Richard her called out.
“Chris, by the way, Maya is not just my girlfriend, she is my fiancée. I just want to be clear about that.” Richard was now all smiles as he made another declaration. He wanted it to be known so that speculation about Maya’s status as his girlfriend is clear.
“Talaga?” She went back to the table as she congratulated the lovers.
“Sir, if you don’t mind my asking, excited lang po talaga. When is the wedding?”
Before Maya could answer, Richard replied. “In 3 months” then held Maya’s hand.
When they were alone, Maya spoke in disbelief.
“Ricardo, in 3 months time? You mean this December? Eh September na ngayon?”
“Yes, I know. So, we are going to hire a wedding coordinator to help us prepare. I’ve asked Lisa to help us find one. She will also help in the preparation.” He explained.
“Si Lisa? Kababalik lang n’ya from her maternity leave. Hon, parang ang bilis-bilis naman yata. We just got engaged and now wedding na kaagad?”
“Maya, I already told you this and I am going to say it again. I want to be with you and spend each day with you by my side. But from the sound of your argument, it seems that you’re not interested in getting married soon.” Richard stood up and left the lounge.
Maya was left on the table wondering whether Richard was upset with her.
So, she followed him in his office. She locked the door when she entered his room.
Richard was already in his desk, looking at his computer when she came in. She went to his side and squeezed herself so she could sit on his lap.
“Hon, galit ka?”
“No. I’m just disappointed. I thought that getting married soon is something that you’d be excited about. I guess I am wrong. It’s up to you. I’ll leave it up to you do decide on the date, okay?” He hugged her as he adjusted the seat to make her more comfortable.
“Maya, could you please start looking for a new chair for me?”
“Ha? Bakit? Isn’t this new? I thought this room was refurbished last year?”
“Yes, but since you keep on sitting here on my lap, I worry that one day, this chair will just collapse. Why don’t you get one heavy duty one?” He smiled and winked at her.
“Ang cute mo talaga pag naka smile” She kissed his be-dimpled cheek. “Okay, I will do that. And also, follow-up ko na lang kay Lisa ‘yung wedding planner. Naku talaga naman, the last quarter of the year will be very for us both sa work and preparation for the wedding.” She was getting excited with the plans.
It took a moment before Richard realized what Maya just verbalized, so he asked to clarify. “Hon, so do I understand it right that you are agreeing to a wedding this December?”
“Yes. Actually, my preference for a wedding is really December. Parang mas masaya kung ang kasalan ay December, malapit sa Pasko.” She confirmed.
“Thank you. So, let’s schedule the “pamanhikan” soon. I’m very sure our mothers will get along.” Richard was about to kiss Maya when his intercom rang. Lisa informed him that his next meeting was already due.
“Hon, I have a meeting.” As both of them stood up, Maya helped him fix his shirt which had some creases. While doing so, Richard pulled her close to him and kissed her. She responded by saying “I love you.”
“Laters, honey.” He whispered and walked out of his office.