Heart’s True Desire – part 16
Forty-five minutes later, Maya came out of the bathroom in a light green summer dress. Her face was without make-up and her hair still slightly damped.
“You are very pretty, Mrs. Lim. Pwede pa kiss?” He teased after giving her a complement. He too had finished bathing at the guest room but returned to his room to wait for her.
She just gave him a half-smile. “Thank you, Mr. Lim. Ikaw ang hilig mong magbiro. The answer is, in your dreams.”
Richard laughed that Maya wondered. “Bakit? Did I say something funny?”
“Wala, wala.” He responded with a meaningful smile. Unknown to Maya, he was thinking of his dream. Yes, he dreamt of her and it was more than kissing. He had a smile plastered on his face when they went out of the bedroom. Richard’s hand was on her elbow as if guiding her towards the lanai.
She looked at him quizzically. “Eh, nasa loob lang tayo ng bahay, bakit nakahawak ka pa?”
“Hon, and’yan sina mommy. Siempre, konting sweetness naman. Remember we are supposed to be newly married.” He responded intending to convince her.
“Hmmm, may point ka diyan.” Maya became silent as they walked towards the lanai area.
“Good morning po, dad, mom.” Maya greeted his in-laws as soon as they joined them at the table.
“Good morning too.” Dad Robert responded and motioned the two to take their seats.
Maya allowed Richard to pull a chair for her and placed the table napkin on her lap the moment she settled on her seat.
“Nakatulog ba kayo ng mahimbing? Hindi ka ba namahay hija?” Mom Esmeralda asked.
Richard replied before Maya could. “Naku, mom, tulog na tulog. Pag-pasok ko sa room eh hindi ko nga magising.” He started putting some bread, eggs and bacon on her plate. He observed that during the days they were both in their condo unit, she would prepare those for breakfast so he thought that was her favorite.
“Ha,ha,ha, mabuti naman at naka pahinga kang mabuti anak.” Dad Robert turned to Maya whose eyes widened at Richard to stop commenting about her sleep.
Richard didn’t understand her signal. “What?” He asked with a raised eyebrow.
She ignored him and just played on her role. “Ricky, anong gusto mo?” She pointed at the breakfast items in front of them.
“Hon, you know what I like.” He responded with double meaning. It was her turn to look at him with a raised eyebrow.
“Richard… ang tanong ko lang breakfast, okay?” She reacted to his teasing to which Richard just laughed. In the end, Maya placed some eggs, adobo on his plate. “O ‘yan, kain na.”
Mom Esmeralda observed the two and beamed too. “Oh, how sweet naman ng dalawang ito.” She commented. “You two are meant to be. Pero, bakit parang lagi kayong nasa travel separately since you got married? How can you work on having a baby if you are always away from each other?”
Maya who just took her first spoon of food almost choked when she heard the question.
Richard chuckled. He automatically gave her his orange juice for her to drink.
Dad Robert answered his wife’s query. “Naku sweetheart, ‘tong anak mo kasi may gusto e-review sa operations ng boutique hotels. Anyway, matatapos na ‘yang travels mo diba, hija?” He turned to Maya for her answer.
“Ahh, opo dad. Two locations na lang po. Yung GenSan na lang and then Boracay.” Maya responded as the lump on her throat had finally eased.
“So dalawa na lang pala. I think the two of you haven’t had a proper honeymoon, Richard. Bigla kasi kayong nagpakasal and then went back here and returned to work.” Mom Esmeralda comment’s placed them on the spot.
“Mom, okay lang kami ni Maya. We’ll decide on a vacation later, di ba honey?” Richard assured his mother. He took Maya’s hand and clasped it with his.
She gave him her sweetest smile. “Yes.” Then, she turned to her in-laws. “Mom, later na lang po kami magbabakasyon pag medyo ayos na rin po ang La Esperanza.”
Loooking at the two who seemed to be really getting along, Robert and Esmeralda just smiled back at them. “O sige, bahala kayo. Pag-pasensyahan nyo na lang ang mommy ninyo at medyo excited magka-apo uli.” Dad Robert said.
After breakfast, Richard and Maya bid his parents goodbye. They were off to their condominium unit in Makati. While in the car, an idea came to him.
“Hon, what’s your plan today?” He glanced at Maya while he was driving.
“Plan? Wala. Maglilinis lang ng room. Then, laundry tapos grocery.” She responded.
“Why don’t you just let our housekeeper do the cleaning and laundry. Trabaho ni Doris yun. She should be coming in today right? Let her do some work, mamaya umalis ‘yon kasi walang magawa sa bahay.” Richard suggested.
“Hmmm, oo nga ‘noh. Sige, mag-go-grocery na lang ako. Pwede pahiram ng car mo? Wala akong car at iniwan natin sa Tagaytay.”
He smiled as he replied. “I’ll drive you to the grocery. And since wala naman din akong gagawin sa bahay, how about we just go out today say, let’s have lunch out and maybe watch a movie?” He knew he pushed too much by suggesting they watch a movie. However, if he only volunteered for the grocery, she might even decline that. With two other suggestions, he thought Maya would have to choose at least one.
Richard was pleasantly surprised with Maya’s response to him. “Hmmm, okay. Let’s go out. Matagal na din akong hindi nakakanood ng sine, eh.”
“Hon, what movie would you like to watch after lunch?” He asked Maya who was just finishing her dessert. They went for Japanese food for lunch.
“Yung Starting Over Again” She replied automatically.
“Huh? Ayaw mo ba ng Robocop?” He suggested an alternative as he wasn’t into Tagalog movies more so with romance genre.
“Ayoko kaya ng Robocop. It’s a remake, di ba? Besides, between the two I really prefer yung movie ni Piolo. Sabi ng mga girls sa office, maganda daw. I’d like to see it too. So, sige na….Ricky, yun na lang.” She requested sweetly.
“Naku, hon, hindi ako nanunuod ng Tagalog movies eh.” He liked Maya but like some other men, he wasn’t sure he could bear the two hours sitting and watching a romantic movie with her.
“Alright, if you don’t want to. Let’s just watch a movie separately. Since nandito na tayo at talagang nasa mood na ako manood, I will watch what I like and you watch Robocop. Tapos, magkita na lang tayo sa bookstore after two hours. Okay sa’yo?” Maya thought that was a reasonable compromise.
Richard didn’t like the idea because it defeats his primary purpose and that was to spend time with her. “Nope, I don’t agree. Well, sige na nga, ikaw ang masusunod sa movie choice.” He finally relented and signaled the waiter to bring their bill.
“Yes!” Maya beamed excitedly.
Forty five minutes later, they were entering the theater. As the lights were dim, Richard had to hold Maya’s hand to support and guide her as they climbed the stairs. The movie house was full of people so they had to be careful as they inched their way towards their seat.
“Hon, nakalimutan natin bumili ng popcorn. What do you want plain buttered, cheese or barbeque?” He said in a low voice as they settled on their chair.
“Ricky, we just had lunch.” She reminded him.
Then both of them fell silent when the movie trailers started rolling. Their eyes got glued on the screen until the main movie opened. Maya was unaware that Richard occasionally glanced at her. She was getting engrossed with the story; occasionally laughing at the scenes.
Thirty minutes into the film, Maya felt Richard took her hand and clasped it with his. When, she turned to look at him, his eyes were on the screen. She just smiled to herself but didn’t take away her hand. Moments later, their hands started to get cramped so they shifted their position. They moved closer to each other such that her arm was over his arm and they were resting them on the armrest between them. However, their hands remained locked to each other.
She heard him whisper. “So, you are one of those who has crush with Piolo.”
She turned and had found face so close to his. “Huh?”
“Sabi ko crush mo pala si Piolo.” He rephrased his earlier statement and saying it closer to her ear.
Maya’s face became warm as she as became conscious of the distance of their faces. She responded in a jest. “Nope, it’s not Piolo. It’s Toni.” She heard him let out a soft chuckle.
Richard then intertwined their fingers. She was momentarily stunned when he took her hand close to his lips and planted tiny kisses on it. Maya felt the warmth of lips at the back of her hand. It sent tiny electric shocks in her body. She tried to pull away but Richard held on to her hand tightly.
“Rickyy, manood tayo ng movie.” She said softly. She noticed that the person on her left turned to look at her. Maya thought they were causing noise to people around them.
“Nanood naman ako, ah.” He responded while his gaze never left her face.
“Hindi ka nanood… nakatingin ka sa akin.” She responded as she moved her face closer to Richard for him to hear.
“Salamat naman napansin mo ako. Hindi ka kasi kumukurap dyan kay Piolo.” He replied still in a whisper and then added. “Malapit na akong mag-selos kay Piolo.”
Maya heard him clearly but didn’t know what to make out of his comment. The immediate action that came to her mind was to stop him from talking and staring at her. With her other free hand, she touched his face and turned it to face the screen. “Manood ka or else.” She warned him.
“Or else, what?”
“This will be the first and last time that we will watch a movie together.” She declared.
Richard’s smiled broadly. “Yes. Thanks for inviting me to go on a movie date again.” Then, he sat up straight and resumed watching the movie. In reality, his mind was elsewhere.
At the cold section of the grocery, Maya was carefully checking the expiration date of the milk package while Richard kept on putting the bottles on their cart.
“Ricky, ‘wag kang dampot ng dampot d’yan. Let’s check the expiry date first.” She scolded him.
“Oh, it’s the expiry date you were checking? I thought you were checking the price.”
She eyed him carefully. “Hindi ka talaga nag-go-grocery ano?”
“Of course not. I just assumed that all items on display are okay. When I was in the U.S., I lived alone so I had to these things too.” He explained.
With his mention of his life in the U.S., she suddenly got curios so she teased. “Owws? Siguro may taga-grocery ka doon?”
Richard just laughed at her comment and shook his head. “Let’s go Mrs. Lim. Malamig na masyado dito sa section na ‘to.”
Their first trip to the grocery was a learning experience for both of them. It was there they learned what each one wanted to eat, their favorite dishes, etc. Without them realizing it, they have filled up their cart with lots of items.
After doing the grocery, they had dinner at a Chinese restaurant where they spent more time getting to know each other. On the times they were together, Richard would occasionally tease or flirt with her. She in turn would fend off his advances whenever she recognized them.
So far, she was caught off-guard once and that was when he kissed her hand while they were inside the moviehouse.
After a full day at the mall, Richard and Maya finally went home with their groceries.
She was carrying a paper bag when she suddenly tripped over mat that was in their kitchen. Unable to support herself from falling, she landed on the floor facedown.
“Ayyyyyy!!” She exclaimed.
“Maya!!” She was more shocked with Richard’s thunderous voice than her actual fall.
Richard saw her fall a feet away from him. He dropped the bags that he was carrying as he half-run towards her.
“Hon, are you okay?” He checked as he helped her stand-up.
“Oo naman. Hindi ko lang napansin ang rug so nag-trip ako.” She responded. If there was anything bruised, it was her pride.
“Ikaw kasi, ang bilis mo maglakad. Next time, dahan ka lang. Okay, let’s check, if you are really okay.” Richard checked her arms. Since she was wearing pants, he couldn’t see if she had bruises but she flinched when he touched her knee.
“Hmm, baka may pasa ka sa tuhod. Anyway, you better change clothes first and then let’s check your knee.” He suggested.
“I don’t think it necessary, Ricky.” She protested.
“Maya, just do as you are told.” He placed an arm around her shoulder and gently pushed her towards her bedroom.
Maya feeling a little sore on her knees gave in to his request. A few minutes later she was in shorts and noticed that she had slightly swollen knees. She was still checking herself when Richard knocked.
“Maya, are you alright?” She heard him say from the other side of the door.
“Wait lang Ricky.” She fixed herself before finally opening the door.
When they faced each other, Richard looked her knees. “Sabi ko na nga ba.” He then pulled her towards the sofa where she could sit. There was a small water dipper with ice wrapped in a handtowel.
“Buti na lang lamog lang ang inabot ng tuhod mo.” He said as he pressed the ice-cold towel on her swollen knees alternately. “Next time, pwede mag-ingat?” He asked with tenderness in his voice.
The expression on his face warmed her heart. She couldn’t help but smile at his thoughtfulness.
“Thank you.” She looked at him who was staring at her intently. “Okay na ako.” She assured him. Their gazes remained for a few seconds.
Then, Richard leaned towards her and planted a kiss light on her lips. “You’re welcome.”
He straightened up and left her staring at his back.