This is a continuation to The Rightful Owner part 13.
On the drive from Antipolo to Makati, Maya was quiet in the car. Richard noticed it so he took her hand as he asked her. “Are you worried about meeting my mother?”
“Hmm, Yes, a little. Syempre, I don’t know if she will like me or not. What if ayaw n’ya sa akin?” She verbalized her fear.
“Maya, I’m not a teenager. This much I can assure you, whether she likes you or not, doesn’t affect our relationship. However, I would want you to meet her because you deserve to meet my family. I only have her and James.” Richard’s statement somehow gave her an assurance.
It took them 45 minutes to reach Makati. Before entering the house, Richard gave her a kiss on the forehead and said, “Don’t worry, I am very sure she will like you. By the way, you look very pretty in your dress.”
When Richard introduced Maya to Mama Esmeralda, the elder lady couldn’t hide her surprise as she greeted her.
“Oh my! Son, I didn’t realize your girlfriend is Maya.” Mama Esmeralda’s eyes were wide and very round as Maya kissed her on the cheek. She noticed how her son’s hand was draped comfortably on Maya’s waist.
“Good morning po.” She rendered her sweet smile.
“Ayy, let’s sit there sa sala. Duon tayo magkwentuhan. Lunch is still being prepared and should be ready soon.” Mama Esmeralda ushered Maya to the living room.
“I’ll leave the two of you ladies to talk, I fix something in my bedroom.” Richard wanted to give time to the two very important women in his life to get to know each other and hopefully they bond together.
“Be yourself” He whispered to Maya and kissed her temple. He gave her a reassuring look before leaving her with his mother.
Maya, trying to hide her nervousness, looked around and her eyes got fixed on the photos on the side tables in the living room. They were photos of Richard and James during their younger years. She couldn’t help but smile as she stared at one of Richard’s photos, he looked so young. There was also a newer photo of him. She finds him more good looking and sexier as he aged.
“Ahh, ‘yan si Richard when he was 20 years old.” Mama Esmeralda pointed the photo that had both Richard and James in it. “Si James naman around 10. Ricky attended his brother’s school event kaya sila magkasama. At that time, yung Papa nila at ako ay nasa trip so it was Richard who took care of his brother. Laging ganun ang Kuya sa kapatid n’ya.” Mama Esmeralda explained.
“So, talagang po palang close sila.” Maya commented and admired the closeness of the brothers.
“Oh yes, although they have different fathers and have a wide age gap, naging close silang dalawa. By the way, Hija, let’s sit down sa sofa so we can be more comfortable.” Mama Esmeralda motioned Maya towards the sofa and they sat side by side.
They spent a few minutes talking about Richard and James younger years. Eventually, Maya also shared about her family background and how she had met Richard.
“Maya, Hija, gusto ko lang malaman mo na natutuwa akong makilala ka. Although nasurprise ako kanina because wala namang nabanggit si Ricky about you. I mean he didn’t mention he is seeing a celebrity. But, natutuwa ako kasi my son introduced you to me. He must love you so much for him to bring you here. ‘Yan ang anak ko na malihim and will not introduce just anyone.” Mama Esmeralda shared.
Maya got teary eyed with the Mama Esmeralda’s comment. She felt special and at the same time hearing the word love had a pinch in her heart. Richard hasn’t said he loved her although she feels he does.
Maya could only say “Gano’n po ba?” She smiled shyly.
“Yes, Hija. He is very different from my other son.” Mama Esmeralda further commented.
“Ganu’n nga din po ang feeling kay James. He is more easy going compared kay Richard na mas serious.” Maya couldn’t help but highlight her observation of the two.
Upon hearing Maya’s comment, Mama Esmeralda had guessed that Maya was the girl her sons were discussing over breakfast in a not distant past. She even counseled Richard about pursuing the girl if he is really interested in her.
The elder lady took Maya’s hand. “Maya, I’m saying this to you as a mother, ha. I hope you understand. My son is old enough to manage his own affairs but I’m also concerned about him as a mother. I don’t want him getting hurt. But I like you Hija.”
Maya knew what Richard’s mother was driving at and she wanted to assure her. “Ma’m, sa totoo lang po, mahal ko po si Richard. Na-a-appreciate ko po lahat ng attention na binibigay n’ya sa akin at sana masuklian ko rin. Hindi ko po s’ya sasaktan kasi pag nangyari yun ako rin po ang masasaktan.” Maya’s tears started to fall. She couldn’t getting too emotional after declaring to his mother her love for him. Her heart was suddenly filled with so much love for him that she wanted to tell him right that moment.
As if on cue, Richard returned to the living room and saw Maya in her tearful state.
“Ma, what happened here?” He walked fast and sat beside Maya. There was worry in his face.
“Ricky, wala. Nagkwentuhan lang kami ng Mama mo. Alam mo naman na iyakin ako.” It was Maya who responded to him.
“Ma..” Still he wanted to hear from his mother. There is a slight pain in his heart that he can’t decipher when he saw her in tears.
“Ricky, I was just telling her that I’m glad that I met her.” The ladies were still holding each other’s hands as if they were assuring each other.
Richard then put an arm around Maya as he kissed her forehead. “Alright, miss best actress, please reserve your tears for your movies.” He teased her and she pinched in on the side in return.
Mama Esmeralda smiled secretly observing the two. She had never seen Richard being so showy, so loving before. Richard had only introduced two girlfriends to her in the past but he was never like that to them until Maya.
“Alright, I think lunch should be ready. Let’s go to the dining room. Kumain muna tayo ng main course bago ‘yang dessert. Ang tamis tamis n’yo mga anak.” Mama Esmeralda stood up as she teased the two. They were all smiling as they went to the dining area.
Over lunch, they continued their conversation. Mama Esmeralda as it turned out watches Maya’s TV series that she even asked Maya.
“So, Hija sinong mas gwapo, si Piolo o si Echo? At sino talaga ang makakatuluyan ng character mo sa ending?” Those two were her current leading men in her soap opera.
Maya just smiled as she said “Si Piolo, po ang mas cute. Yung pong ending, hindi pa po alam kasi tinitingnan pa ng production team yung reaction ng viewers kung kanina sila pabor.”
“Ay, sabi ko na nga ba eh. Yan din ang tingin ko si Piolo at sana kay Piolo ang ending.” Mama Esmeralda seemed to be excited with Maya’s confirmation.
Richard hearing the two’s topic suddenly commented. “Ma, pati ba kayo into those things?” For some reason, he didn’t like hearing the name of Piolo.
“Ricky, ako’y marunong din naman mag-appreciate.” His mother smiled. Maya didn’t notice that Richard raised a brow when they were discussing about her current TV series.
After lunch, Mama Esmeralda announced that she’d take a rest. She normally takes an afternoon siesta and it would also allow the two to have some privacy.
“Maya, Hija, you’ll have dinner with us today ha. So, don’t leave yet. Magkwentuhan pa tayo later. Mag-re-rest lang ako muna dahil napuyat ako sa ballroom dancing last night.” Maya smiled as she watched Richard’s mother go to her room.
When she turned to Richard, he was looking at her intently. He became quiet towards the end of lunch so she wondered what changed his mood.
“Ricky, bakit natahimik ka?” She came up to him and touched his cheek. She caressed it lightly as she moved closer to him.
After a moment, Richard began to smile. “Wala, may iniisip lang ako. Anyway, I have a surprise for you. Let’s go to my room.” Richard took Maya’s hand as he led her towards the hallway leading to his room.
When Richard opened the door, Maya smelled his cologne floating in the air. His room was huge with a king-size bed, walk-in closet, home theater and a working table on the side. She admired the décor and color combination of black and white which was very manly. It was different from his Shangri-la condo unit which is blue. So, the contrast of one big vase with red roses on top of his working table, was very noticeable.
Richard walked towards his table and took the flowers to give them to Maya.
“Maya, happy monthsary.” He was smiling as he handed her the roses.
She giggled. “Thank you. Ang ganda, kaya lang ang bigat naman ng vase.” She commented.
“Ha,ha,ha, kasama ‘yan talaga for your house. A vase where you can put the flowers that I send to you.” Richard took it from her and placed it back on the table but got something inside the bunch of flowers. She walked behind him and when he turned around, she wrapped her arms around him.
“Happy monthsary, Ricky.” She looked straight in his eyes and their eyes locked.
She reached for his lips to kiss him. They kissed tenderly while they hugged tightly.
Moments later, Richard showed Maya a small red box he was holding and gave it to her. “My gift for our first month together.”
Maya opened the box and saw a pair of a diamond heart shaped earrings. She loved his gift. “Thank you Ricky. I didn’t expect this.” She leaned on his chest.
“You’ll have to wear it every day so you’ll always remember me.” She nodded in agreement as she removed her own earrings and replaced them with his gift. “Maganda ba?” She asked him.
“Yes, of course.” He smiled.
Then Richard switched to another topic as he leaned on his table with Maya still in front of him. “So, how was your conversation with Mama earlier?” He checked; holding her in his arms.
“Hmm, okay. Sabi nya nga she likes me” She smiled and then remembered what she told his mother.
“But you are not telling me everything, why did you cry?” He searched the answer in her eyes. Seeing her crying was very disturbing to him.
“Wala… ‘yung usapan lang namin was very serious siguro.” She didn’t want to tell him exactly what they talked about but the emotion of being in love with him was slowly warming her heart.
“Alright, kung ‘yun lang talaga ‘yon.” He hugged her again and then kissed her on the lips once more. As they kissed, they were becoming passionate. Richard’s heart was in knots, a feeling that is totally new to him. It was as if kissing her wasn’t enough. His heart was filled with Maya, of wanting her and loving her.
“Ricky…” She was breathless when he stopped kissing her.
“Maya…. I love you.” It was a very sudden declaration that surprised Maya. She froze as she stared at him and saw the love in his eyes. She felt his sincerity and it warmed her heart. Her eyes started to well up in pure joy. They held each other gaze for a few moments more.
“I know you are surprised. When I saw you earlier with Mama, hindi ko ma pinpoint what was it that caused my heart to ache. Akala ko kasi may nangyari and I wanted to protect you right away. This morning when I saw you sleeping in your bed, hindi ko rin ma describe ang feeling ko for you. So, I guess this must be love.” He admitted to her.
“Ricky..” There was a lump on her throat as she spoke. “I love you too.” Her tears started to fall when he kissed her again.
“Oh eh, bakit umiiyak ka na naman?” He asked her sweetly at the same time wiped her tears with his handkerchief.
“I’m just happy.. actually… I’ve been waiting for you to tell me you love me.” She said in between sobs. She just couldn’t stop crying.
He gave a chuckle as he led her to his bed so they can sit. As he sat down, he had Maya sit on his lap while his hands remained around her waist. “So, are you going to cry every time I tell you I love you?”
Maya shook her head and just hugged him. “I love you Richard” She repeated the words that was she longed wanted to tell him.
“I love you more Maya.” In Richard’s thoughts, he should have told her earlier. The first month with her was nothing like he ever experienced before. Although it started with attraction, he realized that every day he was thinking about her and wanting to be with her. He enjoyed her company so he would feel so incomplete if he didn’t see her in a day; talking on the phone wasn’t enough.
In her happiness due to his declaration and being on Richard’s lap, she started to trail kisses on his forehead, nose, and then his lips. When her lips touched his, he opened his mouth to receive her. His hands started to crawl in her thigh as she was wearing a dress. As he was lifting the hem her dress, Maya pulled it down. She giggled as she saw desire in his eyes and felt the change in his breathing.
He shifted their position such that they were lying on his bed. He kissed her again while his hand roamed around her body. It found its way to her chest and stayed there for a moment.
He then rolled on the bed taking her with him such that she was on top of him. He didn’t let go of her lips as he unzip her dress and slowly freed her arms from her dress’ sleeves.
“Ricky” She was catching her breath. “Are you sure we’re doing it here?” She knew what was going to happen, she wanted him but they were in his parent’s home.
“This is my room, we can do anything we want here.” He said under his rugged breathing. He took off his shirt as Maya glided her hands on his bare chest.
Then, Richard’s phone rang. He ignored it and continued kissing Maya on her neck but his phone kept on ringing. In the end, he groaned in frustration. “Damn, sino bang istorbo ‘yan.” He rolled out of the bed as Maya covered her half-naked body.
Richard took his mobile phone which was on the table. It was still ringing.
“James, what is it?” He snapped. He wondered what could be urgent that his brother was calling him on a Sunday afternoon.
“Bro, ‘yung proposal for the new A320 fleet natin, na review mo na? May tanong ka ba?” James immediately asked sensing his brother was upset.
“”Yan ang itinawag mo sa akin? Sunday ngayon, can it not wait until tomorrow?” Richard’s annoyance was very obvious. When he turned to look at Maya, she has gotten out of the bed and started to fix her dress.
“Kuya, di ba sabi mo magserious ako, so….” James wasn’t able to finish his sentence because he heard Richard say.
“Honey, don’t pull that up yet.” It was a slip on Richard’s part. He was referring to the zipper that she was closing.
“Oh,oh, I get it. Sorry. Parang nakaistorbo ako. Si Maya ba ‘yang kasama mo?” James teased his brother. He was trying to control his laughter on the other end of the phone. He realized he caught his brother in a very bad time.
“James, bukas na tayo mag-usap.” Richard dropped the call and immediately went back to Maya.
“Sorry, honey, I had to take that call.” Richard apologized and started to kiss her again. She tried to avoid the kiss but mentioned, “gusto ko ‘yang term of endearment na honey. Bagay sa ‘tin.”
“Hmmm, okay then.. so honey.. we should continue were we left off.” He pulled her closer to him as he started to unzip her dress again.
“Hmm, next time na lang, parang nawala na ang moment eh.” She held his face in between her hands as if to calm him. Then, she laughed at the very displeased expression on Richard’s face.
In Richard’s thoughts, he has never been very been so upset with his brother until that afternoon.
In the end, Richard and Maya spent the rest of the day watching movies on his home theater. They thoroughly enjoyed the time of just being together, cuddling in bed.