“Wow! Good news nga yan, di ba brod?!”
Fred exclaimed while eagerly nudging Richard who is sitting in his left. Everyone turn their head on him, watching him closely kung ano ang magiging reaction niya sa balita. He seemed shock ang lost of word that he just kept on staring at Maya with his mouth slightly open.
“Good news? Kailan ba naging good news ang paghihiwalay ng dalawang tao, huh?! ”
Maya utter in annoyance.
“Ummm alam na..pag ganyang speech ni Maya tigilan na!”
Paalala ni Doris sa boys ng mapansin na medyo nagsisimula ng mairita si Maya. She put her index finger on her lips to tell them to keep quiet. For a moment, an awkward silence took place until the waiter came back carrying a tray loaded with their orders.
Sabel said in a slightly raised voice inorder to change the mood of the group. Not long after the waiter delivered all their food, everyone started eating. Everyone seems to be enjoying the food on their plate except Richard.
“Why? Di ba masarap?”
“It tastes good but nawawalan ako ng gana.”
Maya guessed it’s because of his sore throat.
“Kasi naman dapat pinuntahan mo yung doctor kanina, inisnab mo lang text ko.”
“Sorry na nga..oo bukas pupuntahan ko. Marami lang kaming ginagawa sa office na di pwedeng ipagpaliban. We have to finish everything kasi minamadali na kami ng client namin.”
“Naku Maya, pagsabihan mo yan. Matagal na naming kinukulit ni Fred yan na magpunta sa doktor kaso sobrang tigas ng ulo. Tingnan mo nga yang boses niya, its getting worst!”
Ryan can’t help but butt in, just like Maya, they are also worried of Richard’s health.
“Brod, pinapagalitan na nga..huwag ng dagdagan pa..pupunta naman ako kaya lang mas kailangan natin matapos yung meeting di ba. Bukas pupunta na ako, wala na naman tayong importanteng meeting bukas , right?”
“Ay kumusta pala yung sa meeting ninyo kanina?”
“Well, ayun natapos na din. Next week na yung shooting ng TVC. Ay maalala ko nga pala, brod di ba sabi ng secretary ni Mr. Alvarez magbibigay sila ng free accommodation ng resort nila, matutuloy ba yon?”
“Yes, why? Gusto mo bang ikaw gumamit nun?”
“Free accommodation sa isang resort?Ay gusto ko yon para sa honeymoon babe! ”
Sabel shrieked excitedly.
“Anong honeymoon..hoy, tapos na kayo mag honeymoon noh. Di pa nga lumabas yang product ng honeymoon na yan, gusto mo ulit mag-honeymoon na naman..Jusko day! Pwedeng huwag naman masyadong selfish..yung iba naman mag-honeymoon!”
“Anong…Aba aba aba Doris, anong ibig mong sabihin niyan? Gusto mong mag honeymoon na kayong dalawa ng jowa mo?”
Raising an eyebrow, Sabel turn to her left where Doris is and began pointing her finger to Doris and Fred. Everyone was laughing at this that made Doris blush.
“Baliw! Bakit ako ba ang may asawa dito at kailangan ko ng honeymoon? Alam kong ikakasal na kayo pero di ba nauna na yung honeymoon ninyo? Sino ba yung mag-asawa dito na di pa nagho-honeymoon?!”
Hearing this everyone turn their eyes to Maya and Richard who are sitting close to each other.
“Ano?Sira talaga kayo! Kami na naman yung nakikita ninyo. ”
Maya felt her cheeks burning. The mere mention of honeymoon makes her heart pump crazily.
“Mmmm i’ll think about that. Thanks for the suggestion Doris. After our busy schedule, I think I also need some time away with my wife. Right hon?”
“Ano?! Hon ka diyan! Hanep ka rin anoh! Hmmph! Diyan na nga kayo. Excuse me, padaan!”
Maya can’t take it anymore, Pakiramdam niya lahat ng dugo niya umakyat lahat sa mukha niya sa sobrang hiya kaya tumayo na siya sa kanyang inuupuan. It doesn’t help pa when all her friends are giggling , may lalo tuloy siya na-conscios.
“Oh, where are you going?”
Richard asked in panic, holding her wrist to stop her from going.
“Sa ladies room lang..”
“Ay teka, wait lang..sama ako.”
“Ako din! Excuse us muna boys.. Magpapaganda lang muna ang girls.”
“Dalian ninyo ha.”
The girls left and headed to the ladies room. As soon as malayo-layo na ang girls, Ryan and Fred playfully tap Richard’s shoulder.
“Brod! This is it! Wala na si James, so does that mean kayo na ulit?”
“Ewan ko.. ano sa tingin ninyo?”
“Ay di namin alam yan.. ano ba sa tingin mo?”
“Di ko pa masasabi eh. But i’m hoping nga na pumapayag na siya, but what if hindi parin?”
“Well, at least ngayon wala ka ng karibal… Teka, wala pa ba siyang sinasabi sa’yo kung ano ba talaga yung desisyon niya?”
“I remember kanina, may gusto siyang sabihin but I told her idelay na muna niya ng isang linggo. I was scared kasi akala ko sasabihin na niyang si James na pinipili niya. ”
“If that’s the case, then you still have a week to do your best. Teka anong level na ba kayo?”
Ryan eagerly ask Richard. Now that Maya called it quits with James, he is also excited for his friend. He could somehow sense na konti na lang, his friend would eventually get his happiness back.
“What the ..one? Are you joking?”
Fred and Ryan laugh while shaking their head.
“Eh kasi, natatakot akong magkamali. Ayokong galitin siya so I took my time. ”
“Anong took my time? Brod! Sa panahon ngayon di na uso yan..tingnan mo ako. Si Sabel..dinaan sa santos paspasan eh di pumayag na kaagad na magpakasal na kami.”
Ryan said as he points to himself proudly. Smirking at Richard.
“Tsaka brod, kung ganyan ka ng ganyan baka matulad ka sa akin. Kung di ko pa nabisto si Doris na nakikipag-date sa Lino na yon, nga-nga na lang ako. Buti nga ngayon wala na si James eh..Daanin mo na sa santong paspasan brod! Tama na yung pagiging Pong pagong mo. Ilabas mo na yung mga damoves mo noon. Asan na ba yung dating Richard Lim na nakilala namin ni Ryan noon? Yung matinik sa chicks?”
“Brod, iba na ako ngayon..pero tama ka..kailangan ko na sigurong mag level-up kahit konti.”
“Goodddd!! So ano ang plano?”
“hmmm akin na lang yon.”
Richard answered flashing a lopsided smile .
“Aba! Good luck!”
Fred and Ryan patted his back. A few minutes passed, the girls joined them again.
“I think we need to celebrate this happy occasion, why don’t we order white wine for the girls and beer cocktail for us boys?”
Fred suggested, Richard and Ryan agreed but the girls opposed.
“NO..ipagda-drive nyo pa kami kaya NO! ”
Doris said firmly.
“Kahit isa lang? Come on! Ano pa at nasa bar tayo?”
“So dahil nasa bar tayo kailangan talaga uminom? Di ba pwedeng dahil gusto lang natin ang ambiance dito kaya dito tayo nagtipon-tipon? Babe ha..ayoko! Kung gusto mong mahuli or madisgrasya ka, ikaw na..huwag mo ako isama at ang magiging anak mo !”
“And, you! Alam mo naman sigurong di ka talaga pwedeng uminom kasi may gamot kang iniinom prescribed by your own self Mr. Lim..kasi nga doktor ka na ngayon..”
Maya said pointing at Richard with a stern look on her face.
“I’m sorry brod..pass na muna ako..ayoko magalit asawa ko!”
Richard said while raising both of his hand in surrender. Hearing him call her asawa makes her blush. She just couldn’t stand it whenever he reminds her of their status. At dahil wala ng magawa, the boys gave-up. Nakuntento na lang silang magkwentuhan over softdrinks and juice.
They stayed at the resto-bar for a few more hours before they decide to go home. Pagdating sa parking area ay naghiwalay na silang magkakaibigan. Si Sabel ay sumama na kay Ryan, si Doris naman ay iniwan na lang ang sasakyan sa may parking area at kukunin na lang daw to kinabukasan, habang si Maya naman ay kay Richard.
Habang nasa loob ng sasakyan, nahahalata ni Maya na panay ang ngiti at sulyap ni Richard sa kanya. Alam ni Maya na gustong pag-usapan ni Richard yung tungkol kay James and her decision but she suddenly felt uneasy to talk about it so pretended to be tired and sleepy.
“Pwede bang umidlip muna ako sandali? Malapit lang naman yung lalakbayin natin di ka naman siguro aantukin di ba?”
“Sure..gisingin na lang kita pagdating natin doon.”
Whle pretending to be asleep. Di mapakali si Maya. Alam niyang excited na si Richard sa sasabihin niya, or perhaps iniisip na nito na magkakabalikan na sila, now that she decided to end her relationship with James.
Sabel naman kasi eh! Pahamak na buntis oh! Teka..kalma ka muna Maya..sabi naman ni Richard di ba next week na lang yung sasabihin mo? Oh, eh di next week..problema ba yon?..Tsaka, di mo rin naman alam kung ano yung gagawin mo sa kanya di ba? Why not use the remaining week para kilalanin siya..tama..yun na lang..give him a chance..yun na lang..kalma ka Maya..okay, kalma..
Naramdaman ni Maya ang unti-unting paghinto ng sasakyan nila, she waited for Richard to wake her up. After a few minutes, she felt him gently shaking her shoulder, it’s the signal that she waited so she slowly open her eyes and pretended again na nakatulog siya kahit na hindi naman talaga. Naunang bumaba ng sasakyan si Richard at pinagbuksan siya ng pinto. As soon as nakalabas na si Maya, Richard quickly grab her wrist then slowly slide his fingers in between hers, entertwining their fingers as he pull her closely to him as they walk. Maya wanted to pull her hand away but Richard refuse to let her go. While they are inside the elevator, Richard kept looking down at her, smiling like a fool.
“Ano?! Kanina ka pa tawa ng tawa diyan ah..Pinagtatawanan mo ba ako?”
“No! I’m just..happy..soo..ano na?”
The elevator door slide open so they move out of the elevator and started walking towards their unit.
“You and me..ano na?”
They stop infront of their unit, di parin sumagot si Maya. After Richard entered the password on the keypad, the door open. Richard let Maya enter their unit first before he step inside. Following her closely behind. Maya goes to the kitchen to get something to drink.
“Tayo na ulit di ba? Wala na si James eh.. Nakapag-desisyon ka na, you let go of him so ako na ?”
Maya could see in his eyes the eagerness to hear the confirmation from her. She can’t help but feel amuse looking at him while drinking water.
“Hoy Richard Lim! Di porke hiniwalayan ko na si James tayo na ulit. Bakit di ba pwedeng hiwalayan ko siya tapos hiwalayan din kita? Bakit, narinig mo na bang sinabi ko that you’re forgiven na? Remember wala ka pang ginagawa to convince me why we should keep this marriage..Kampante ka ata? ”
Maya saw Richard frown for awhile. But after he regain his composure, Richard slowly walk towards her . Nang mapansin ni Maya na parang inilalapit na ni Richard ang mukha nito sa kanya para halikan siya, dahan-dahan namang nilalayo ni Maya ang mukha niya from Richard to prevent their lips from touching.
“Talaga.. brace yourself..baka magugulat ka na lang isang araw ayaw mo na akong mawala sa paningin mo.”
Maya chuckles as she push him gently away.
“Hangin naman dito, ohhh ang lamig!”
She can hear his laugh as she walk away, heading to their room to change.
Shit! Bakit ba parang affected ako dun..ano bah Maya..kumalma ka nga!
Naunang nagbihis si Maya. Sitting cross-legged on their bed holding a cotton and a small mirror, nag-aalis ng naiwang make-up si Maya nang lumabas si Richard from the shower room. He goes to their small walk-in closet and after awhile, he goes out wearing his white sleeveless shirt and checkred boxing shorts. He join her in bed making Maya conscious. It wasn’t the first time na nagtabi sila sa kama but tonight is just different.
“You’re still at it?”
Richard ask pertaining to what she’s doing.
“Let me help you..Give me that cotton, ako na ang mag-aalis.”
“No, ako na..”
Richard took the cotton from her hand.
“Humarap ka dito.”
Maya turn and face Richard then close her eyes, tilting her head a little for him to be able to do the task of wiping her make-up off successfully. Richard began to carefully and slowly wipe the cotton unto her eyelid making Maya feel more sleepy.
Richard didn’t hear Maya respond so he stop what he is doing and look at her.
” Are you listening?”
Maya answer him with a voice na halatang inaantok na. Then he continue where he left-off, now wiping Maya’s other eyelid.
“I hope you are really listening and I hope you will believe me..Maya..”
“Please believe me when I say i’m sorry … I won’t get tired saying this to you…”
Maya just listen to him, waiting if there is still something that he wants to add.
“Yes, I’m listening..”
“I love you.”
Maya open her eyes and stare back at him. Richard, slowly planted a kiss on her lips.
“I love you.. very much. ”