A/N: Again, thank you to the EBU admins for continually accommodating my work and to Ms. Chuchy for always checking my draft. My very special thanks go to Ms Alpha Grace for critically reviewing my draft so that I can come up with a better quality of work. My effusive thanks to the readers who always make the effort to leave encouraging comments. As I have said many times over, your comments/reactions keep me typing and typing and typing…parang Energiser Battery lang ang effect ;). You can also find the complete uncut version of this series at http://cyndiresti.wordpress.com/
Much earlier that day, Maya’s time was spent mainly on woolgathering. She had been absently smiling as she silently reminisced how her stargazing date with Richard went like a dream the night before. She was even singing a love tune while she did her household chores. Mamang even caught her using the feather-duster as a microphone when she sang the chorus verses.
“Ang saya-saya naman ng apo ko,” commented Mamang as Maya gave her grandmother a quick hug when Maya encountered her in the living room “kaya lang wala pa rin sa tono.”
Maya giggled good-naturedly. She never cared whether she sings out of tune. She is in love with Richard and he ‘says’ he feels the same. Under the stars, he had confessed that he had been in love with her for almost a decade. And she is beginning to believe him.
Her grandmother paused in her tracks as she was about to return downstairs to the shop. “Ano yun, apo?”
“Ang ganda po talaga ng mga bituin sa langit, Mamang.” Maya sighed dramatically.
“Bituin?” Mamang looked up at the late morning sun that was intensifying as the day reached noontime. “Bakit ka nakakakita ng mga bituin? Nabagok ba ulo mo?”
Maya smilingly shook her head as her grandmother checked her head for any lump or swelling.
“Hmmmp!” Mamang pursed her lips and considered her youngest grandchild before heading back downstairs “Teresita, itong bunso mo, nakakakita ng bituin kahit sikat na sikat ang araw…nagha-halusinasyon na…”
In the late afternoon, she had an unexpected visit from Capt. James who spent a few hours with her while his return flight was delayed due to minor repairs on his aircraft. Since she was euphoric with how her relationship with Richard was progressing, she got a bit overzealous in congratulating him when he had confided that he was finally committing himself to taking on the deputy managing director’s post long offered to him by his dad. This meant that he will not be regularly flying commercial routes anymore.
Sensing that Capt. James was also attempting to formally express his feelings for her, Maya pre-empted him by stating that she has been in love with someone and that particular someone returns her feelings. Capt. James smiled ruefully and stated that he had suspected that there has to be a special someone for Maya to keep on ignoring him, even joking that most women found him irresistible otherwise. Like a true gentleman, Capt. James accepted the situation and they parted as friends.
Maya was bubbly the entire dinner time. Then, the clock indicated 7pm which progressed to 8pm and then to 9pm. It was almost 10 in the evening and Richard was still nowhere in sight. She texted him but he did not answer.
“Bunso, kalma ka lang,” teased Kute as she noticed Maya jumping to see over the front road window each time a vehicle passed by.
Nasaan na kaya si Singkit? Sabagay, wala naman siyang sinabing gabi-gabi siyang dadalaw. Mahirap pala itong nasasanay agad-agad.
“Hmmmp!” Maya pursed her lips in annoyance.
“Busy yun,” explained Kute as she noticed her sibling’s darkening expression.
“Kahit anong busy niya, nandito siya pagdating ng gabi” Maya argued.
“Wow, Maya! Daig mo pa ang asawa, ah!” Kute was laughing as she tried to balance the shop’s accounts that were spread in front of her.
“Kute, ano ka ba? Baka marinig ka nila Tatay.”
“Pakinggan mo nga kasi ang sarili mo, ni hindi mo pa nga boyfriend yung tao, mukhang gusto mo nang rendahan!” observed Kute “saka nasa kuwarto na sila Tatay. Si Mamang naman naghihilik na kanina pa.”
“Matutulog na rin ako,” Maya left her sister in the family room and locked herself in her bedroom to sulk.
Richard’s light gray suit jacket was on a wire hanger and was dangling by her wardrobe cabinet handle. After a few minutes of debating on the wisdom of visiting a man’s home, she took the jacket and went out of her bedroom. No one was about in the living areas so she decided to just leave without telling anyone. She should be back before anyone realizes that she was gone anyway. She trekked the sandy beach to reach the villa where Nana Benita and Tata Igme was just about to lock the side kitchen door behind them. The old couple let her in and said their farewells. Before they went, Tata Igme forewarned Maya that the boss was in a foul temper since late afternoon.
Maya may probably have been able to cope with Richard in a bad mood but she was certainly no match against Richard in an amorous mood! Her physical attraction to him was just too strong for her to withstand his advances. She had just had a small taste of his prowess in bed that had her behaving so carelessly and so wantonly. She was delirious with pleasure as he seemed to instinctively hone in on all her erogenous zones. He had caressed and stroked her so intimately that she was helpless as he brought her to heavenly heights where she burst into flames.
As she slowly came back down to earth, Maya’s sensual bliss was quickly replaced by acute embarrassment. If only one can be swallowed up by the earth merely by wishing it, she would have done so to avoid facing Richard afterwards. There she was lying in a wicker daybed with him, behaving like an overly emotional female as tears flowed in post experience reaction.
“Maya, what’s wrong sweetheart?” Richard softly asked in concern, which made her tears flow even more profusely.
“Maya?” Richard questioned softly.
Maya abruptly sat up and gathered her front, still crying silently. She would have gotten up and walked away just as quietly had Richard not barred her way.
“Maya, look at me.” Richard’s voice had a hint of pleading but Maya still can not bring herself to look at him directly. “Sweetheart, please talk to me.”
“I want to go home,” Maya hiccupped her response.
“What do you want me to say, Maya? I cannot say I am sorry for what just happened coz I’m not,” was the unapologetic response as Richard framed her face.
Maya turned her head away as Richard tried to kiss her tears away. She desperately needed to get away from him. Now!
“Okey, fine!” Richard bit out when Maya struggled out of his hold.
Richard and Maya both had mutinous facial expressions on the ride home. The minute the Land Cruiser stopped, Maya jumped out without waiting for Richard to open the door for her. She ran upstairs like the devil was at her heels and locked herself in her room.
She looked terrible the next day as she was not able to sleep for each time she closed her eyes, she could see Richard and how he caressed her traitorous body. She would then get embarrassed all over again. She stayed in her bedroom all day, feigning sickness. Hence, it was easy for her to avoid Richard when he visited that evening with Kute making excuses for her.
Maya was on tenterhooks the entire hour that he stayed. She could hear him chatting with her Tatay Arturo discussing structural reinforcements and other projects her father would like to do. She could not hide in her bedroom like this, night after night. She could travel back to Manila to stay at her condo in order to give herself a reprieve from Richard’s advances. So, the next day, she informed her family that she needed to be back in the capital city for a few days to sort out some things. Kute had looked at her with disbelief but did not ask probing questions.
Maya’s flight back to Manila was uneventful. It was just what she needed to calm herself and try to rationalize what had happened between herself and Richard. The answer was pure and simple of course. Powerful mutual physical attraction. With the strong pull between them, it was but natural that they would end up in bed. Sooner or later.
Pero hindi ko pa siya sinasagot! Saka sabi niya maghihintay siya!
Well, he did wait. He waited until the next day and almost made love to her! The worst part of it was she just let him. No, that was not entirely accurate nor honest. She enjoyed his love-making. With his vast sexual experience, she was certainly no match for him. And that was not fair!
Pilyong Singkit na yun! Sobrang eksperto sa aparato! Hmmmp!
She was still wearing a disgruntled frown when she went through the airport gates. The expression was still in place when, Emman, her gay flatmate and fellow TA flight attendant, opened the door for her as she was struggling to find the right key for the front door.
“Roomie? What are you doing back here?” her friend asked as he followed her into their minuscule flat that barely had room to swing a cat.
“Dito ako nakatira diba?”
“My pink gosh!” Emman’s left delicately plucked eyebrow was raised. “Ang alam ko, isang buwan ang bakasyon mo. So, what’s up?”
Maya tried to look relaxed as she checked her mail. They were mainly bills as per normal but one was from TA training department which she quickly opened. It was reminding FA’s of the first aid refresher courses that started to run from last week. She had another week to be able to attend one of the sessions.
“I just have to attend the first aid refresher course this week,” Maya quickly used the new information as her alibi as she glanced at the reminder letter “Baka umuwi din ako ng San Nicholas pagkatapos.”
Emman smiled as he peered at her closely. “Roomie, meron kang hindi sinasabi sakin.”
Maya was taken aback. Did she really look different after almost making love with Richard? Goodness, will everyone be able to tell?
“Ha? Anong pinagsasasabi mo?” she asked worriedly.
Emman, perceptive as always, shook his head. “There is a sparkle in your eyes that was not there when you left.”
“Well…” Maya avoided her flatmate’s knowing gaze.
“My pink gosh! Meron ka na bang boylet? Finally?” exclaimed her gay friend excitedly.
Maya smiled at the term ‘boylet’ and how highly unsuitable it was to describe Richard. He was anything but a boy.
“There is someone but… I am just…well,” Maya paused as she tried to verbalize the overwhelming feeling she had at the speed of how the relationship was progressing. “basta…saka ko na lang ikukwento sayo, kapag hindi nako nahihilo sa bilis ng mga pangyayari, ha?”
“Sige promise yan. Kukulitin talaga kita.” Emman retorted as she headed towards her bedroom.
Maya just smiled ruefully as she closed her bedroom. She unpacked, undressed and garbed on a thick towelling robe. She then gathered all soiled clothing into her laundry basket. She glanced at her wall clock which just ticked a few minutes after 8pm. She went to her ensuite bathroom and turned on the tap to fill the bathtub with very warm water. Then, she lit her chamomile scented candles to fill the bathroom with a relaxing ambience.
With her long tresses in a high chignon, Maya was already soaking in the bath when Emman hollered that he will go to the mall to meet up with a few female colleagues from TA to watch the last full show screening of a chick flick. She yelled back that she was in the bath and requested that Emman lock the door behind him.
Resettling herself in the warm water, she took the ball puff to scrub herself in places that was reminding her of her last encounter with the bespectacled chinito. He had touched her in the most intimate places which were still very sensitive at the moment. Even the gentle laps of water against the swell of her breasts were echoing the caress of the man who preoccupied most of her conscious thoughts at the moment.
With grim determination, Maya closed her eyes and tried to blank out any thoughts on Richard. The very warm scented water eventually soothed and relaxed her body. Maya frowned as she felt the light caress of fingers over her uppers arms which travelled to the upper swell of her breasts that were visible above water. Maya languorously opened her eyes and saw Richard lowering himself into the bathtub, causing a lot of scented water to overflow. Maya blinked as he poised himself above her before his lips claimed hers in another searingly hot kiss…
Author’ endnote: For the complete chapter, please click on this link: