Chapter 21: All Right?
Down the hall, it is very quiet that day. The waiting room is almost empty, Maya’s head is resting against the wall waiting for her turn.
Almost every night, she lies in the darkness, on her bed with pillows as her company, where she would shed an impossible amount of tears. Since the day that she left him, she’s been like this. Blaming herself on why did she let everything happen, when she could have stopped this if only she didn’t push herself to him. If only she didn’t allow her heart to hope that he will someday love her, too, then maybe she wouldn’t end up like this. Alone. Then, she remembered that she’s not alone anymore..
Right now, she’s in the hospital waiting for her check-up. She rubs her still small belly, where a little one is growing day after day, she will never be alone. She is not sure what kind of world she could give her baby without a father. But the fact that the sun still shines, that there are still people laughing and smiling no matter what they have been through the day, she should, too keep on moving…
Without him. Who needs him anyway?
He needed to rectify things. That is the mantra inside his head as he watches Maya’s every move. His eyes were glued at her direction. Somehow he thought that if he glances away to where she is, she might disappear again.
He missed her so bad that seeing her now feels like a dream. His smile never left his lips although he is also nervous inside. He doesn’t know why all of a sudden she appeared again. He is grateful, yes he sure is, but he can’t help but think of why?
Why is she here? Why does his parents know that she will be here? How the hell did they find her? And why didn’t they inform him? Too many questions that he wanted to ask, but he will reserve those questions later. Meanwhile, he should be happy that she’s beside him.
Esmeralda and Roberto were asking Maya random questions, about her trip, her job, blah blah blah. However, Richard couldn’t help but just stare at her. Those voices of his parents would serve as his background while he continues to stare. Sometimes, he would listen to what Maya were saying. He could catch few replies of Maya, something like “Yes”, and “no”, “I’m okay” those one liner answers to his parents’ lengthy questions. He couldn’t blame her though, he is aware that she is uncomfortable. Who wouldn’t be?
“Ay, my dear Maya. My son is now working with expanding his own business.” This caught his attention that made his head turn towards his mother. He has been so quiet that his mother already tried to engage him in a conversation. Geez.
He knows that she is looking at him but she blinked quickly when he looked at her and turned away. As if she, too was nervous. “Congrats.” She said almost in a whispher. That one word made his heart thump loudly. He wonder if they can hear the wild beating of his heart.
“Thank you.” He replied sweetly. His eyes reflecting the sweetness in his voice. He prayed that she will turn her eyes back to him, but she didn’t. She just nodded and resumed eating her food.
If earlier, he was mad at his parents for not informing him, now, he is thankful for their presence. They tried to make the dinner as comfortable as possible.
Richard’s parents continue to talk some more about things that happened with them, more about his business, his achievements these past few months, blah blah blah. They are really talking like proud parents. Bragging all of his awards that he received. He was really ashamed of it, like really, why would Maya want to know all of those? Surely, she didn’t came here to see him just to know that. She is here because of something else, in which he is somehow scared to find out any soon.
“Okay, time for us to go.” Esme checked her watch and informed them.
“Where are we going?” Richard asked, he wondered where will they go next.
“Son, kami lang ng papa mo ang aalis. You guys still have some dessert to finish.” Esme smiled then, her whole face changed with it. Very happy with her idea. He knows it’s all her idea.
Richard turned his head to look at Maya, somewhat searching for any hesitation whatsoever about his mother’s idea, but there was none. She seemed very cool with it.
Maya smiled at his parents and nodded. “Ingat po.”
“All right! Goodbye.” Esme and Roberto kissed them and bid their goodbye. Esme even whispered something before she left. Something like “just relax. Good luck, son.” Like really, he can’t even breathe with the thought that Maya is finally beside him. How can he even relax?
As soon as his parents were gone, Maya focused on her food. Digging her chocolate ice cream without even eating it. Slowly, the ice cream is already melting so Richard had asked for another serving for her in which Maya didn’t even decline.
“Ahm.. Maya.. How are you?” He shifted a little to see her and decided to ask her anything to start their conversation. It took him a few minutes before he started to talk to her. The waiter even had already served the ice cream to Maya before he started talking. He is really nervous. Add to that, Maya never looked at him. She just keeps on fiddling with her fingers.
“Fine.” She replied tersely after a few seconds.
That cold tone she’s using is unbearable. “That’s good. So.. So anong ginagawa mo? In Canada, of course.” He asked. Earlier, he had learned with the help of his parents that Maya is staying in Canada with her mom and dad. Apparently where they also had met accidentally blah blah blah. She described the weather there and how much she missed “home”. That is all that he can remember. He somehow hoped that that ‘home’ was with him. Unfortunately, he is hoping too much, and that is bad for himself.
She now managed to look at him with one eyebrow raising. “I actually said earlier na I am helping sa family business and I also work sa office. So hindi ka pala nakikinig.” She replied. Her tone makes him more nervous.
“Oh. I-I am sorry.. It’s just that-”
“It’s okay.” She cut him off. “Anyway, it’s getting late and I really need to tell you something important.” She informed him. He can see that she is serious.
“O..kay.” Deep within him, Richard would really want to say no. He is afraid that Maya might want to file for an annulment. He will definitely say no!
Despite the presence of Maya at his side, he still feels that there is a space between them, an indefinable distance. Even when her eyes are on him, she doesn’t quite see him, her thoughts wandered somewhere else. He wanted to embrace her again, he wanted so bad to feel her solid and alive. Just to make sure that things are real for the nth time.
The restaurant is filled with different types of people. All are lost in their own world, chatters and laughters were heard from table to table. With all of these people having fun, it didn’t even make Maya’s mood any better. Maya may look calm on the outside, but she was trembling inside. She pauses for a while and took a deep breath before she decided to talk. “I am really sorry if I left without any notice. I didn’t mean to. Pero kasi.. Siguro naman naiintindihan mo di ba?”
His forehead was creased, he sure know the answer, but he should wait if what’s inside his head is the same reason why Maya left. “I really don’t understand the reason why, Maya… I thought we.. We were kinda okay.. So I.. I really don’t know…”
“Sure you don’t know.” Maya sarcastically replied, half smiling. “Siguro ako yung una nyang sinabihan, which is funny kasi dapat ikaw muna pero, I understand how much she wanted me to be out of your life. She succeeded eventually.” She nodded remembering the day and started digging her almost melted ice cream again.
He shook his head, he is now unsure what they are really talking about. “Wait. She? You meant who?” He asked, although of course he knew the answer. “Si Sandy ba?” His eyebrows were furrowed as he waited for Maya to talk again.
“Yes. Her. Actually, napatawad ko na naman kayo eh, di ba? You asked for a second chance but… Yung sinabi nya, that is too much!” She raised her voice a little. It was a long time ago, but saying it to his face feels like it was only yesterday.
Her words darted straight to his heart. “Maya…” He sighed. Now he’s sure that Sandy’s revelation to him is the reason why Maya left him. Damn! How a lie can change things. “Y-you can start by revealing to me what she had told you. Because I think that is why you left so suddenly.”
She looked down and he watches her as she closes her eyes. “Nu-nung araw na yon.. Nakipagkita siya sa’kin. Sabi nya may importante daw siyang sasabihin. So, pumunta ako. Kasi naramdaman ko sa boses nya na may kailangan akong malaman eh.” She started looking straight into his eyes. “Dapat pala hindi na lang ako pumunta, kasi yung nalaman ko.. Sobrang hindi ko matanggap. Ricky alam mo ba kung anong nalaman ko?”
She shook her head. “Of course, malamang alam mo na ngayon, pero that time mukhang ako yung unang nakaalam… Sabi nya..” She paused, gathering courage. “Sabi nya… she’s pregnant. Sobrang sakit eh. Hindi ko matanggap. Mas masakit pa sa nalaman kong may iba ka. Kasi that time na nalaman kong may iba ka, alam kong hindi mo ako ganun kamahal, pero nung sinabi mo na mahal mo ko, tapos nabuntis mo sya, dun na ako nasaktan kasi alam kong nagsinungaling ka. Baka nga never mo akong minahal.” She finished. Tears were already falling down her face as she was done explaining. Richard tried to touch her, but she brushed his hands away.
“Maya..” He knows the truth, but words can’t come out of his mouth. He is hurting for her. Damn! He had make her miserable. All this time. “I am so sorry for all the hurt I had caused you but, you have to know that is not true. We.. We don’t have a child.” He blurted. Maya momentarily stopped from shaking. As she was already shaking from trying so hard to stop herself from crying.
“What do you mean?” She asked without looking at him. Her heart started thudding wildly. She reminded herself to breathe. It felt like she was underwater and running out of oxygen.
“Wala kaming anak.” He replied immediately. “Nagkita kami recently and she told me everything she had told you. She lied, we never had a child.” He waited for her to say something but she only stared at nowhere for a while.
“Maya…” He rested his hand on top of hers on the table, this time, she allowed him to.
“I–I..” She sighed “nagsasabi ka ba ng totoo?” She studied his face intently and had noticed the shadows beneath his eyes lend him a haunted look.
“I swear I am telling the truth!” He almost shouted. Hoping and praying that she would believe her.
Silence fell. Maya raised her hand saying that he needed to stop and let his words sink in first. She pressed her lips together and stopped talking for a while. Like words had deserted her. She doesn’t know whether she should believe him or not. The heck, what can that revelation change now? Nothing! Everything had already happened and it can’t be undone. She left, she believed Sandy and chose to leave Richard alone.
When her gaze turns back to him, his eyes shifts away, the sadness in his eyes stayed and the lip-biting starts up again. She wondered what is running inside his head. She can hear the sound of his heaving breaths filling the air.
“When you left, I felt so alone. I’ve been used to seeing you everyday. I never thought how it would feel when one day, you will go away.. I searched everywhere for you, Maya.. But I never find you.” A jagged pain runs through him. There is a mounting pain at the back of his throat, a warning pressure behind his eyes.
“Kayo walang anak?” That sounded more of a question, in which Richard just nodded. “Tayo meron.” She added after a few.
He even didn’t understand what she had said. It was a jumble of noises. At least that is what it sounds like, he can’t process what she had said, it doesn’t sound true. The air conditioning chilling his whole body before he can produce a word.
His lips were parted, eyes staring at her. “Wh-wait.. What?”
“The day that I left.. Ricky, I am pregnant then.. I– I was about to see you, right? But.. But -” she was surprised because she didn’t manage to finish her sentence as Richard already engulfed her in a hug. His lips curved up in a childish smile.
“I am already a father! I am a father..” He keeps on saying while embracing her. Maya, then wrapped her arms around him. Happy about the things that transpired. She never thought things would be like this.
Things changed then, everything slowly sinking in. Richard slowed down, while everything around him sped up.
medyo busy lang po talaga, so sorry sa late update. Yung finale episode nga ng Be careful di ko pa din napapanuod eh. Haha! Anyway, thank you. Will try to update sooooon. 🙂 😉