First it was all fun and games.
A story about the journey of two hearts to fate, to destiny, to love, to one another and to forever…
Then, on July 16, 2016, things got real.
(same day edit)
First I want to thank all the readers of my stories here in EB, I really do appreciate all your likes and comments. Second, I want to apologize if I haven’t got the time to continue “Love and Heartaches” though I really want too it’s just that I’m too busy. Whenever I tried editing/typing the chapter 15 after 5 minutes Im already dozing off. And because of this me and my 2 other good friends another fanfic writer Kris Mackaroo and Charmtaz decided that Kris will continue the story.
It will still follow the original plot, she (Kris) will just edit the first 14 chapters (e.g. correct the grammar, tenses and add some characters) to further improve the story. For some who are worrying that the story may stray from the original plot, do not, for the idea will still be coming straight from my brain cells.😉
I will post here in EB the newly improved first 5 chapters of L and H soon.
So to everyone na gustong makichika, maki uzi sa lovestory ni Tikoyman at Maya kindly visit kianmackaroo.wordpress.com for the updates.
Thanks and To God be the glory.
A/N: This is a continuation to The Guardian Angel – part 2.
Richard brought Maya to his condo unit as soon as she was discharged from the hospital. While confined, he closely monitored her progress alongside with his bestfriend Ryan, who has a background in psychiatry. Though Maya did not really sustain any physical injuries, both Richard and Ryan suspected that she might have experienced trauma that caused for her brain to shut off her memories, effectively giving her amnesia.
Ryan had initially offered shelter for Maya, reasoned that he can take better care of her and regularly check on her development but Richard refused. Though he knows that Ryan has nothing but Maya’s best interest in mind, he simply can’t let himself trust her just to anyone else, not even to his closest and most trusted friend. If indeed Maya was the very same guardian angel he had back when he was still a child, then by all means, he needed to know what exactly happened to her.
Richard had just helped Maya to bed, willing her to rest. “Dito ka muna hangga’t hindi pa bumabalik ang memories mo. You still can’t remember anything don’t you?” Maya, bowing down, simply shook her head. Richard smiled sympathetically at her and held her hand. “It’s okay. Things like these usually take time. One day, maaalala mo rin ang lahat. But for now, magandang magpahinga ka muna.”
Maya nodded her head. She looked up and saw the sincerity in his eyes. “Thank you,” she muttered and after a few seconds, smiled.
Snippets of memories he had with her before flashed before his eyes. And before he could even control himself, he moved closer to her, pulled her in his arms and hugged her tight. “I’m so glad you came back for me. I knew you were real. I always believed.” He closed his eyes, relieved that the angel he knew he had when he was a kid was real, that she wasn’t something conjured up by his imagination. “I missed you Maya. I missed you so much.” His yearning came out spontaneously that he had no time to process everything he does and says.
Her voice filled with much uncertainty pulled him out of his stupor. He immediately pulled back and offered an apologetic smile. “I – I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to. . .”
“I understand,” she replied in a less-sympathetic manner. “Gusto ko lang munang magpahinga.”
‘O – of course. Of course.” He tried his best to sound casual and shrug off the sense of awkwardness that starts to invade them. “I’ll just be outside if you need anything. Don’t hesitate to approach me.” She simply gave him a nod. “Right.” He gave her another smile before getting up on his feet and walking out of the bedroom.
As Richard closed the door behind him, he cannot help but smile. He walked towards his own bedroom and lay down on his bed. With his hands at the back of his head, he started blankly into space and remembered snippets of the moments that he and Maya shared together. He may no longer remember everything they shared together but one thing is for sure, she was someone that he has never forgotten. At a very young age, he had come to learn what it is like to fall in love. Maybe it wasn’t love after all, maybe it was only infatuation. But seeing her again after all these years, he’s never been more certain. She always had a special place in his heart that no one else has ever gone close.
He reminisced every single moment that his mind remembers until it went back to the last day he ever saw her.
His tears could not stop from flowing as Maya had just told him that she already had to leave for good. “But I will never see you again, right?”
She nodded her head in confirmation. “You may never see me again, but I will always be here.” She lifted her hand and placed it on his left chest, to where his heart is.
With his small little hand, he placed it on her left chest. “Will I always be here as well?”
He never really understood what she meant. All along he thought that having her in his heart was already enough, but he was wrong. As days went by, he started to grow weary and in constant yearning for her presence and company. He starts to miss her so badly that he usually cries himself to sleep at night and call out her name.
His parents tried to comfort him until they grew tired of it all. They had him be checked by a psychologist and that’s when they started instilling in his mind that everything that happened isn’t real but are just things made up by his imagination. He tried to fight it off at first and stick to what he believed in until later on, he found himself getting confused and no longer knows what to believe in anymore. He eventually let himself believe whatever truth they wanted him to believe.
As he grew older, he became better and lived a normal life. He graduated from college, pursued a medical degree, dated a couple of women until he met Alex. Meeting Alex reminded him of someone in his past. A past that he wasn’t even sure ever existed. He loved Alex until the cheating happened. And when he thought that everything is going to crumble down, his savior came. His Maya came back.
Seeing her once again, proved everything he held on dearly to be true. The sight of her made his heart ache that nobody ever did. And that’s when everything had been clear, everything she said that night, she indeed, will always be in his heart.
It was already dinner time but Maya still hadn’t gotten out of her room. Making sure that the table is already set, Richard walked back to her bedroom. “Maya?” He tried knocking on the door but when no response is heard, he decided to open the door.
“Maya?” He peeked through the small gap and noticed that no light had been opened yet. He tried to call her again but when no response was made, he let himself in. As he was walking towards her bed, he noticed Maya slightly tossing on her bed, moaning and slightly restless. He immediately approached her, deducing that she was having a dream. “Maya! Maya!” He tried to shake her to wake her up.
She stopped in her movements and opened her eyes, looking blankly into space. It took her a couple of seconds to register where she was and when she looked on her right, she saw Richard, worriedly staring at her. “Richard?”
“Yes it’s me.” He took her hand and gently caressed her face. “Are you alright?”
“Yes. May napanaginipan lang ako,” she said in a soft voice.
“Do you still remember it? Your dream?”
Maya nodded her head. “There’s. . There’s a boy,” she started and played the dream inside of her head. “I was in his bedroom.. Putting him to sleep.”
“Do you know his name?” he asked, curious to know the details of her dream.
“No. But. . I felt a certain kind of connection with him. I don’t know. I just can’t explain it.” She started staring into space once more. “Para kasing. . I know him at malapit talaga siya sa akin.”
Richard felt his chest tighten. Though he doesn’t know who exactly she dreamt about, he cannot help but be jealous over the fact that Maya felt a certain kind of connection for the boy she just dreamt.
“Tingin mo ba may kinalaman siya sa nakaraan ko?” she asked, looking closely at Richard.
“It’s really hard to tell. Is this the first time you’ve had this kind of dream?”
She thought back. “Yes.”
Richard nodded his head and starts to give her the possibilities. “That boy could’ve been someone from your past or it could also just be a random dream,” he said. Though he wanted Maya to regain her memories back, he was also hoping that whatever it is she dreamt is just something random. “We can discuss it with Ryan tomorrow. He might be able to interpret it better for you.”
Maya gave him a nod and smiled.
“I’ve made dinner for us. Tara sa labas para makakain na tayo.”
Together they went out of the bedroom and walked towards the dining room. Richard assisted Maya in her seat and settled himself beside her. He led a prayer of thanks before placing portions of food onto Maya’s plate.
“Okay lang if hindi ka nasasarapan sa luto ko. I have fruits in the fridge if –“
“No it’s okay. Masarap naman siya eh,” she said truthfully.
“Ang tahimik mo lang kasi. I was already getting worried that you don’t like what I cooked,” he reasoned with a smile.
Maya smiled back. “Ikaw lang ba mag-isa ang nakatira dito?”
Richard nodded his head. “My parents are living in China. Mas gusto kasi ni Papa na mag-settle doon. But I prefer staying here. Dito kasi ako lumaki sa Philippines.”
“Hindi ba sila magagalit pag nalaman nilang nagpapatira ka ng taong hindi mo naman kakilala?”
Richard let out a chuckle. “I’m sure they won’t. Besides, I’m already old enough to make decisions for myself.” He wanted to stress out that he really knows her but forced himself not to, worrying that it may make things awkward again.
“Ikaw?” she asked. “I know you’ve already told me that you knew me from before, pero sabi mo nga bata ka pa noon? How can you be so sure na ako nga yun?”
Richard contemplated for an answer. “I just know. I can never be mistaken.”
“But how is that even possible?” she asked in an incredulous manner. “For sure marami nang nagbago lalo na sa physical appearance ko. But how can you be so sure na ako nga yung nakilala mo ng mga bata pa tayo?”
“Because you never changed.”
“I didn’t what?”
Richard took a deep breath. “I’ve known you all my childhood life. I guess ever since I was born you were already there for me.” He looked at Maya and said, “You were my guardian angel Maya.”
Maya simply looked curiously at him, unable to immediately process his words.
“It may seem hard to believe. Kahit nga ang parents ko hindi naniwala sa akin.” He bowed his head down and smirked. “After you left, I was so lonely, especially after everyone told me that you are not real, na imahinasyon lang kita. And I believed them. As time went by, I let myself believe them.” And with a sigh, “I just accepted the fact that you were just something made up by my imagination.”
He turned and looked at Maya once more. “But after seeing you again. . .” he said and smiled. “I knew then that those memories are not made up. That you are not made up. That you are real.”
Maya still had no words to say. Richard took her hand and held it firmly with both of his and looked deeply in her eyes. “You were my guardian angel Maya. You were the first girl that I loved. And we made a promise to each other that we will never forget each other.”
Maya pulled her hand away and starts to look at him warily and with a sense of panic. “Just stop. Please, just stop.” She averted her gaze and looked away.
“Maya.” He watched her closely and noticed her anxiousness. “I’m telling you the truth.”
“This is a mistake Richard. Hindi mo ako dapat dinala dito sa bahay mo.”
“But you have nowhere else to go.”
“I know there’s some place I can stay aside from here,” she said. “This is wrong. This is all wrong.” Her heart raced at the possibility that Richard is losing his sanity. “Hindi ko alam kung ano ang nangyari sa’yo noon o kung ano ang binabalak mo. Pero imposible ang sinasabi mo Richard. Hindi ako isang anghel.”
“But you are! You are Maya. You may not remember it now but I assure you. You are the guardian angel that I used to have.”
“Richard please,” she pleaded. “This is insane. I may have lost my memory but I haven’t lost my mind! Hindi ako isang anghel!” she pointed out.
Richard fell silent. He could only stare at her, stunned with her reaction and obey her request. Sadness starts to fill him as he realized that she cannot only remember him but she also thinks like everyone else who did not believe him. “I – I’m sorry.”
A moment of silence ensued as not one of them dared to speak up first. Then Maya took a deep breath and spoke. “Kailangan kong maghanap ng ibang matitirhan. I clearly cannot live here.”
Panic started to strike him. “No. Hindi mo kailangang lumipat pa. I told you, you can stay here.”
“I clearly can’t.” She faced him and looked in his eyes. “You are a doctor Richard. Ikaw ang mas nakakaalam kung ano ang makakabuti para sa iyo.”
“But I’m fine. I’m okay,” he said. “You’re the one who needs to be helped and looked at and I can do those.” He tried to reach for her once more. “I can help you and I can look after you.”
“This won’t work Richard.”
“It will. Trust me, it will.”
“I don’t think I can trust you in that matter,” she said flatly.
Richard’s heart sank. If she cannot trust him, then there’s nothing more left for him to try. He bowed his head down and closed his eyes. “I understand.” He looked at her with sadness but still managed to give her a reassuring smile. “I’ll. . I’ll arrange something for you then. I’ll talk to Ryan and see if his offer’s still up.”
Maya heaved out a sigh. The idea that she will only be transferred to one of his friends does not appeal to her much but she also knows that she doesn’t have much of a choice. She then realized that being with his friend is better than being around him. “Okay then. Thank you.”
A/N: This is a continuation to The Guardian Angel – part 1.
Richard drove around the city wanting to free his heart from the hurt and betrayal he was experiencing, but it was to no avail. His mind kept going back to the scene he had witnessed in his very own bedroom. His fiancée in the arms of not just another man, but one of his best pals, James Ventura. His grip on the steering wheel tightened further at the thought of their betrayal.
As he was driving, he spotted a bar that had just opened up for the day. He pulled his car over and drove to the parking lot. Within minutes, he was already settled inside and ordering himself a bottle of scotch.
Maya could only watch him from afar. She had already meddled too much and stayed longer around than she should. The rules are clear. She can only look after the child she was assigned to and once time is already up, she needs to go back home to report and possibly accept her new assignment. But seeing Richard again made her lose any sense of order or responsibility. She was too caught up in the moment that the only thing she wanted to do is watch him and know that he’ll eventually be okay.
For years, she had tried to get over him. And just as when she thought she really had, the unexpected turn of seeing him again proved only one thing, she has never really forgotten him. Funny how a single boy stood out from the thousands of children she had looked after over the centuries. But Richard had been special. From the moment she laid her eyes on him, she knew he was different.
“You made me a fool Alex. You made me a fool.” Richard nursed the glass in his hand. He raised it and watched the amber liquid swirl inside it. He tipped it on his lips and swallowed its content in one go. He grabbed the bottle and started pouring himself another half-full.
“Of all people. Kailangan pa talaga sa mismong kaibigan ko.” He let out a smirk before drinking his scotch. The routine went on and on until his bottle is almost empty.
“I yilly thought. .hik. .you were like my gajan a – angel. Hik. .” He shook his head and had another gulp of his drink. “Shino ba naman kashing may shabe na tso-tsoo ang gajan angel? Tsanga ka tsalaga Richard. And you even call yourshelf a doctor! Pathetic!”
He tipped and emptied his bottle on his glass. He finished everything in one gulp and when he tried to pour himself some more, nothing came out from the bottle. He peeked through the hole and slammed it on the countertop after being convinced that it indeed is already empty. He started calling for the bartender and demanded for another bottle but deeming his drunken state, the bartender refused to give him another. Richard persisted some more but the bartender stood his ground. In the end, Richard gave up altogether and decided to take his leave.
Maya watched him as he swayed towards his car. He opened the door and fought hard to lock his seatbelt in place. A few more seconds had passed and the sound of his car’s engine roared. He stepped on the accelerator and made his way out to the highway.
Maya settled on the passenger’s seat. She looked at Richard with concern and worry in her eyes. She watched him closely as he try his best to focus his hazy alcohol filled eyes. She knows she can’t do anything for him at the moment so she just helplessly watched him on the side. A couple of minutes more and she saw tears welling up his eyes.
“Richard. . .”
He tried wiping off the tears. He lifted one of his hands from the steering wheel and recklessly rubbed his eyes but it only clouded his vision further. He rubbed them insistently and closed his eyes longer. The next moment he knew, loud honking sound is heard upfront. Instinct took over him. He maneuvered his car and took a full turn of his steering wheel to the right. He tried to decelerate but it’s already too late. He lost control of his car until it slammed onto the side concrete barrier of a bridge. His car flew over the edge and dove into the river. The airbag burst open slamming his face onto it that left him unconscious. Blood started to gush out from his nose while water starts to seep inside his vehicle.
“Richard!” Seeing him unconscious had Maya in frenzy. She tried to fight off the urge to help him and follow their policies but the thought that he may not wake up in time, troubled her greatly. Images of her time with him when he was still a child flashed before her. Their happy and sweet memories together that can never be forgotten.
“Shino ba naman kashing may shabe na tso-tsoo ang gajan angel? Tsanga ka tsalaga Richard. And you even call yourshelf a doctor! Pathetic!”
She remembered him muttering those words earlier. Throwing all sense of rationality aside, she let her impulse take over and helped Richard out of the vehicle. She swam him back to shore where she tried waking him up.
His head throbbed in pain and his mind swirled restlessly. He slowly opened his eyes and hazily stared at the figure looming over him. Her bambi eyes struck him the way they did the very first time he laid eyes on them. “Maya?” He saw a glimpse of her smile before he drifted back to unconsciousness.
“Where have you been? You should’ve been back hours ago to report.” The senior angel Zenaida asked Maya as soon as she went back to heaven.
“I’m sorry. I had some place else to go,” she admitted sheepishly, unable to look at her superior’s eyes.
“You know the rules Maya. We can’t simply neglect the duties assigned to us without asking permission from Father,” Zenaida reminded kindly. She let out a sigh and informed Maya that she was being summoned. “Father wanted to speak with you.”
Maya could only close her eyes. She already saw it coming and had already tried to brace herself for the things to come. She nodded her head and made her way to the garden where Father was. Feeling contrite for her actions, she bowed her head down as she approached him.
“Why do I feel your deep sense of fear?” he asked.
“I’m sorry Father! I’m sorry!!” She started to sob as she recalled how she defied heaven’s rules and orders. “I acted on impulse again and meddled with the affairs of a man.”
Father simply looked at her kindly and smiled. “Did you now? In what way did you meddle with him?”
“I. .” She took a deep breath to calm herself down. “First, I tried to stop him from hurting anyone. And the next thing I knew, I was already helping him out of his car so he would not be left to die. I’m sorry Father! I really am!” sobbed Maya.
“Are you sorry for helping him?” Father prodded on.
“No,” she answered softly. “But I am sorry for defying your wishes.”
“What is it that you know about what I wish?” Father watched her and waited for an answer but she gave none. “I wished to be obeyed and trusted Maya. I only want my children to trust me with all their hearts and minds. Believe that I know what is best for them and that I will only give them what’s best for them.”
His words struck her to the recesses of her heart. As an angel, she should have known better than to act on impulse. Instead, she acted on her own accord without praying and asking for guidance from her Father. “I’m sorry.”
“No sin can be left unforgiven especially if you seek forgiveness with a remorseful and humble heart,” he said. “But every action has its own consequences.”
Maya closed her eyes and humbly accepted whatever consequence is found fit for her actions.
A week had already passed since the accident. Richard was still in the hospital though he only incurred minor concussion on his head and a twisted ankle. Thanks to the seatbelt strapped securely around him and the safety features his car had, he did not suffer any major injuries.
He was deep in his thoughts when the door opened and in came Alex with a basket of fruits at hand. “Hi babe!” she greeted enthusiastically.
“What are you doing here?” he asked sternly.
“I’m here to visit you. Look I brought some fruits for you.”
Richard closed his eyes and took some calming breaths to control any sudden outburst of emotion. “Alex look, I’ve already made it clear the last time. It’s already over between us.”
Alex looked at him with alarm. “Babe, you’ve got to understand. You’ve just been through something traumatic. I know this is not easy for you and –“
“Seeing my fiancée having sex with one of my best friends can really be very traumatic, don’t you think?” he asked sarcastically.
“Babe I already told you, hindi namin sinadya ang mga nangyari.” She walked towards him and tried to hold his hand but Richard simply yanked it away. “Wala kaming relasyon ni James. Things just got out of hand and before we know it. . .” she paused as her eyes started to get watery. “It just happened Richard but we never meant any of it!” Her tears started to fall down her face as she regrets every single thing that happened.
“Things don’t just happen Alex. It would never have started if either one of you went against it,” he said. Alex could only answer him with her cries. He heaved out a sigh and continued on. “Please Alex. For both our sakes, just leave.”
“Pero Richard –“
“Please,” he insisted. “If you still have some self-respect, just leave.”
Alex straightened up but still the tears won’t stop. “I’ll leave Richard. But I won’t give up on you. I won’t stop until you forgive me.” With much hesitation, she turned her back on him and went out of the room.
Richard sighed in relief and not for long, found himself pre-occupied by another being. He reached out for his crutches and went to the room next door. He approached the bed where an unconscious woman was lying. He sat on the edge and held her hand. All his worries and troubles suddenly forgotten and a smile appeared on his lips. He watched the woman sleep when all of a sudden, her eyes started fluttering and her lids slowly opened. She looked around, trying to register everything around her.
“Maya? Finally you’re awake!” Richard beamed at her and waited for her to respond.
Richard’s heart brimmed with gladness as he started to hear the same exact voice he had etched on his mind. “You’re in a hospital,” he said. “You came back. You actually came back!”
She trained her eyes on him and looked at him curiously. Her brows started to furrow as she tries to recognize the man in front of her. “Sino ka?”
Richard grinned proudly at her. “It’s me, Richard! I’m the one you looked after when I was still a kid.” He waited until she recalls and recognizes who he was but it never came. She just continued to look at him blankly. “Hindi mo na ba ako naaalala? Ako yung batang inalagaan mo Twenty-five years ago!”
“Hindi. . . Hindi kita naaalala. Wala akong naaalala.” She looked around some more and tried to think a couple of things that she can remember, but she can’t remember even a single thing. “Wala akong maalala.”
Richard frowned and worriedly looked at her.
“Si – sino ba ako? A – ano ba ang pangalan ko?” she finally asked.
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It was supposed to be a vacation. Matagal na siyang di nakakauwi ng Cebu. Masyado siyang naging busy sa pagpapalago ng Lim Aviation Services. Matagal na niyang pangarap ang magkaroon ng sariling negosyo, yung sa kanya at hindi sa pamilya niya. Yung masasabing pinaghirapan niya at hindi dahil anak siya nila Don Roberto at Donya Esmeralda.
Another reason ay gusto muna niyang lumayo kay Celeste, his girlfriend. Masama ang loob niya sa huli, he proposed to her pero tinanggihan siya nito. Hindi pa raw ito handa para magpakasal at magkaroon ng sariling pamilya. Masyado kasi itong career-oriented at laging sinasabing marami pa itong pangarap para sa sarili. Halos tatlong taon na rin silang magkarelasyon kaya akala niya ay tama na ang panahon para yayain niya itong magpakasal ngunit nagkamali siya.
Nang makauwi ay nabalitaan niya ang nangyari kay Maya mula sa kanyang mama. Kababata niya ito at kahit pa pitong taon ang agwat nila ay naging sobrang malapit sila sa isa’t-isa. Awang-awa siya dito kaya naman agad niya itong binisita. Ilang taon din silang hindi nagkita kaya naman nagulat siya ng malaki na ang pinagbago nito. Hindi na ito ang batang patpatin at maraming pimples na pinagtatanggol niya sa mga kaklase nito. Dalagang-dalaga na ito at talaga namang napakaganda.
“Maya ikaw ba yan?” sa veranda niya natagpuan ang huli.
“How are you?”
“O-ok lang kuya. Ikaw?”
“Are you sure?” Balik-tanong niya dito. Sa loob-loob niya ay hindi pa rin talaga nagbabago ng ugali si Maya. Lagi pa rin itong nagsasabi na ok ito kahit ang totoo ay hindi naman.
“Opo naman. Ang tagal ninyong di nakabalik ng Cebu ha. Sobra kayong naging busy sa business ninyo. “
“Oo nga eh. Alam mo na ayaw ko namang laging na-aasociate sa pangalan ng parents ko. May kailangang patunayan kaya doble-kayod din.” Paliwanag ni Richard.
Nakangiti man si Maya pero nakikita ni Richard sa mga mata nito ang lungkot na nararamdaman.
“Grabe Maya akala ko kanina may iba ng babae sa bahay ninyo. Hindi talaga kita nakilala kasi…” pinigilan ni Richard ang pagsasalita ng mapansin niyang parang may mali sa sinasabi niya. “S-sorry Maya I mean dalagang-dalaga ka na kasi and look at you…you are beautiful.”
Hindi napigilan ni Maya na hindi mamula sa sinabi ni Richard. Nakakahiya, she’s blushing.
“Ok lang kuya. Medyo nagkalaman na ako at nawala na rin ang pimples ko, buti na lang. Wala na ring tumutukso sa akin ng patpatin at atis.” Natatawang sabi ni Maya kay Richard.
“Kung may tutukso sa iyo ng ganyan ngayon, hayaan mo bubugbugin natin.”
Lalong namula si Maya sa sinasabi ng kanyang Kuya Richard.
“Ahem…” si Don Arturo Dela Rosa, ang ama ni Maya.
“Tito!” Agad lumapit si Richard sa ama ni Maya at nagmano. Sa loob-loob ni Maya ay hindi pa rin nagbabago ang kanyang Kuya Richard, magalang pa rin ito. Isa sa mga katangiang nagustuhan niya dito.
“Kamusta na po kayo?” ang tanong ni Richard sa matanda.
Naramdaman ni Richard ang tensiyon sa pagitan ng mag-ama. Maya-maya pa ay nagpaalam na si Maya.
“Ahh Kuya Richard mauna na ako. Kailangan ko pang maghanda dahil may flight ako mamaya.”
“Flight?” ang pagtatakang tanong ni Richard kay Maya.
Bago pa nakasagot si Maya ay naunahan na siya ng ama. “She is a Flight Attendant now. Anyway, Richard do you want to go to the farm? Alam ko namimiss mo na ang sariwang hangin and of course ang mga sariwang prutas. Papunta rin naman ako doon might as well doon na natin ituloy ang kuwentuhan.”
“S-sige po Tito.” Ni hindi na nakuhang magpaalam ni Richard ng maayos kay Maya dahil agad siyang hinila ng ama nito patungo sa naghihintay na sasakyan ng mga Dela Rosa.
“She is my only daughter Richard. Nang mamatay ang ina nila I see to it na they get whatever they want. Ang hinihingi ko lang ay alagaan nila ang dignidad ng pamilya pero anong ginawa niya, gumawa siya ng isang malaking eskandalo sa pamilya.” Pagpapahayag ni Don Arturo kay Richard.
Damang-dama ni Richard ang sama ng loob ng ama ni Maya para sa huli.
“Nasaan na po yung lalaki?”
“Ayun naglahong parang bula. She’s insisting that nothing happened to them pero sinong maniniwala? Her Tita Amanda saw them leaving the motel for Christ’s sake. Anong ginawa nila dun nagjack-en-poy, nagtitigan?”
“But Tito paano nga kung wala talagang nangyari sa kanila? I mean kilala ko si Maya she is not that kind of a person. Napakalaki ng respeto niya sa pamilya lalong-lalo na sa inyo.”
“If she really respects me hindi dapat siya sumama sa lalaking yun sa lugar na yun. Ngayon sino pang maniniwala na malinis siya?”
Napabuntung-hininga na lamang si Richard. Ang ama ni Maya ay isa sa masasabing tradisyunal. Masyado itong koserbatibo sa mga paniniwala nito. Hindi na niya alam kung anong paliwanag ang gagawin sa ama ni Maya. Masyado na itong sarado sa sitwasyon ng huli.
“Mapapatawad ko lang siya kung makakasal siya. Yun lang ang magsasalba sa kanya sa kahihiyang ginawa niya.”
“Tito!” si Richard.
Bumisita ulit si Richard sa mansiyon ng mga Dela Rosa. Hinanap niya si Maya at sinabi ng isa sa mga katulong na nasa tabing-dagat ito kaya naman pumunta siya doon.
“May problema ka talaga.” Si Richard.
“K-kuya andiyan ka pala.” Ang gulat na sabi ni Maya. Nakaupo siya sa isa sa mga batuhan na may lilim na gawa sa mga kawayan.
“I remember when you we’re ten or eleven. Kapag napapagalitan ka ng papa mo dito kita laging pinupuntahan dahil alam kong andito ka para magpalipas ng sama ng loob. Ganun din kapag may problema kang di mo masabi sa bahay ninyo.”
Tumayo si Maya sa kinauupuan, napabuntung-hininga. “Hindi ko na kasi alam kuya kung anong gagawin ko. Ilang beses na akong nagpaliwanag na walang nangyari sa amin ng lalaking yun pero kilala mo naman si papa masyado siyang sarado.”
Damang-dama ni Richard ang problemang dala-dala ni Maya. Tulad ng dati ay pinabayaan niyang magsalita ito at siya naman ay nakikinig lang.
“Hindi ko akalain na magagawa ni Bart sa akin ito. I’ve love him kuya pero pagkatapos niyang gawin ang napakalaking eskandalo na ito ay bigla na lang siyang nawala. Ni hindi niya ako tinulungang magpaliwanag kay papa at sa mga kamag-anak namin. Ngayon ang feeling ko para akong naipako sa krus ng walang kasalanan.” Tears started to fell down on her face. Kahit matagal na silang hindi nagkita naging napakadali kay Maya para sabihin ang lahat kay Richard.
“My father told me that he will only forgive me kung maikakasal ako pero paano ko gagawin yun kung ang lahat ng lalaki sa lugar natin ang alam tira-tira na lang ako.” Humagulgol na ng tuluyan si Maya.
Agad namang lumapit si Richard kay Maya and started rubbing her back para kahit papaano ay tumahan ito. Nang mahimasmasan ay umupo ulit ito sa may batuhan.
“Minsan iniisip kong tanggapin na ang proposal ni Mr. Belmonte para matapos na lahat ng problema ko.”
“Hindi ako sure kung natatandaan mo siya kuya pero kilala mo siya. Si Mr. Belmonte, ang isa sa mga partner ni papa. Minsang dumalaw siya sa farm ay kinausap niya ako. He offered marriage and ang sabi ko ay pag-iisipan ko.”
Pilit inaalala ni Richard kung sino si Mr. Belmonte. At ng maalala na ni Richard kung sino ito ay kumunot ang noo niya. Halos kasing-tanda na ito ng ama ni Maya. For Maya to consider marrying the guy irks him.
“Maya he’s almost the same age as your father.”
“I know pero siya na lang ang sagot sa problema ko kuya.”
“No! Don’t marry him.”
“Marry Me!!!” Si Richard.
“What???” Si Maya.
to be continued…