Maya thought she was dreaming. Then realized, she was not. She smiled and pretended to be still sleeping. Since her back was to him, he can’t see that she was awake and that she had a giddy, dreamy smile on her face. She liked what he was doing and she wanted to know what he would do next, or how far he would he go with what he was doing.
It started with a caress on her belly, then his hand went up to the underside of her breast, softly, gently, lovingly caressing and teasing it. Then the hand moved to her breast, cupping and massaging it. He did the same to the other one. By this time, Maya was silently waiting, and wishing that he would touch her nipples next and use his thumb to drive them crazy.
Richard smiled. He heard Maya’s bated breath. So, she was awake, but pretending to be still sleeping, ha! He knew what she was waiting for. Hmmm, he thought to himself. He decided to tease her and see if she will cry uncle. Instead of touching her nipples, he moved his hand to her belly.
Maya quickly turned. “Babe!” She pouted and lovingly protested, huskily.
“What, Honeybun?” He said, grinning, teasing. “You want something?”
“Nope.” She said, wanting to tease him also. She thought, ganoon Ricky Lim ha. “Wala ah. Bakit may dapat ba akong hintayin?” She said with raised eyebrow.
“Hmmmm, really, really, Honeybun?” Richard grinned naughtily.
“Wala nga, Babe. Nada. Zilch.” Maya insisted.
“Really? How about this.” Richard grinned, then lowered his mouth to Maya’s nipple and started playing with it, swirling his tongue around it. While at it, he cupped the other breast and gave it a thorough massage.
“Oh….” was all Maya managed to say after that.
Richard surfaced from what he was doing, then said huskily, “let me show you another way of loving, my love.”
Maya nodded, wanting to know what he meant, though she had an inkling, if those blazing hot romance books are to go by.
Richard started it by kissing Maya thoroughly, with his hand continuing what he was doing earlier, then his mouth went lower, to her jaw, trailing kisses, to her neck, collarbone and back to her breasts, which he concentrated on loving, as if those were the only thing he was seeing. While Maya was losing her sanity and breath, and Richard trying to control the effects of Maya’s response on him. he moved from her breasts to her belly, planting little kisses. Then further down, kissing her inner thighs, teasing. Then he zeroed in to her core.
“Ricky.” Maya gasped in a mixture of surprise, embarassment, and excitement.
Richard loved her core, like he made love to her breasts, until Maya was incoherent with wants and needs. She just wanted relief from the intense throbbing she was feeling.
“My love, let go.” Richard encouraged her. “I’ll be here.” Then he went back to driving her to the heights of fulfillment.
Maya did, with wonder. She felt boneless and weak.
Richard caressed her face, and her hair, then kissed her thoroughly.
Maya smiled at him lovingly. Then she felt it. “How about you, Babe?” She asked.
“I’m okay, Honeybun.” Richard smiled at Maya. He does not want to shock her so soon after her initiation to the art of making love. He is just happy that he made her happy.
“But I want to. Show me please.” Then Maya moved and started raining kisses on Richard even before he can react.
“Tell me what feels good? Does this feels good? Do you like this?” Maya asked as she proceeded to love Richard they way he had just loved her. She was going through it blindly, instinctively, and judging her actions by the responses she was eliciting from Richard. Richard can barely think with the assault his lovely and responsive fiancee was doing on his body.
He, eventually guided Maya on, telling her what to do, how and what to touch. But still, her mere touch sent him on fire anyway, until he too, can’t take it anymore. He flew to fulfillment. Maya liked driving Richard to the height of pleasure, as well, with her kisses and her heated touch.
“Maya, my love. I love you very much.” He said as soon as he managed to recover from Maya’s assault to his senses.
“I love you too, Babe.” Maya looked at Richard and cuddled to him.
In the afterglow of their morning lovemaking, they hugged and stayed in bed for they don’t know how long, until their stomachs grumbled.
“Honeybun, I think we need sustenance.” Richard smiled. “Sobra mo kasi akong pinagod.”
Maya smiled. “Ha, ako lang ba. Ikaw nga diyan….”
They laughed and tickled each other. They went to bath together which made the process of feeding their poor tummies longer. They were more concerned in satisfying a different kind of hunger. The breakfast they were supposed to have turned into lunch. They also didn’t make it to Laoag and Pagudpud that day.
Maya and Richard opted to stay in Vigan one more day, seeing the sights together. They had a wonderful time riding a calesa, cuddling even in the calesa, that took them to century old churches, houses, pottery-making and weaving places. It was a fun day. They had dinner at the same inn. The evening was spent getting lost in their own world.
They said goodbye to Vigan the following day. Maya looked at the house where they stayed one more time before they boarded the car, as if reluctant to say goodbye to it. Richard noticed it.
“We can always come back here.” He remarked, knowing the significance of the house for them. “Or we can ask the owner if they will sell it to us.”
“Sell, wow, that’s extreme, Mr. Lim!” Maya smiled. “Thank you my generous fiance. I doubt if the owner will sell. It has been in their family for generations. Saka okay na sa akin na bumalik-balik tayo ng Vigan. This city will always be a special place for me.”
“For me, also.” Richard said. “Lalo na at dito ko lang naranasan na lumuhod sa cobblestones at mapanood ng whoever saw it, habang nagpo-propose. The most public I have gotten. But for you, Honeybun, I can do more, like mag-videoke sa plaza.”
“Hahahaha, hmmm, that’s giving me an idea. Tara, let’s stay one more night so you can do it. Otherwise, babawiin ko ang pagsagot ng oo sa engagement.” Maya teased.
“Honeybun……!” Richard, laughingly protested.
Richard insisted on driving from Vigan to Laoag. Maya agreed but insisted that it will be her turn from Vigan to Pagudpud, where they will spend the night. The two of them decided to forgo the Cagayan Valley leg of the trip, saving it for another time.
They went around Laoag and nearby areas, saw the the sights on Maya’s list. Towards the evening, they traveled to Pagudpud. Their home for the night was the secluded beach place that Maya booked. She really had a knack of finding the best place to stay. They settled-in in their cottage, then have a lovely dinner. The place was operated by a husband and wife team and they had the best service. Maya and Richard chatted with them a bit.
“Let’s go for a walk down the beach, Babe.” Maya told Richard after their hearty dinner.
“I was going to suggest nga that Honeybun. Can we bring one of your sarongs so we can stay there and enjoy the night.” Richard asked.
Maya went back to their cottage to get one of her colorful sarongs. Richard ordered a bottle of wine, and borrowed two wine glasses while waiting for Maya to come back.
When she returned, she saw what he was holding, and smiled. Her Honeybun and wine!
“So, you will get me drunk this evening?” Maya teased Richard.
Richard smiled and said, ‘“Yes, so I can have my way with you.”
“Ha, ha, ha, Babe. You already did. May pa-unfinished, unfinished business ka pang dialogue ah. Finished na ngayon ha!” She said smiling.
“It will not be finished, Honeybun. Not as long as we live.” He said, gazing at her lovingly. “Infinite, iyon.”
Maya gazed at her wonderful fiance, lovingly. She was just so full of love for him. She is looking forward to their journey together as husband and wife. “Halika na nga, so we can the perfect spot for that ‘infinite unfinished business’.”
Hands intertwined, they walked down the beach, found the perfect spot. Maya placed the sarong on the sand, straightened it out, and asked Richard to sit down. As soon as he did, he poured them a glass of wine each.
“To my most beautiful and loving fiancee. I love you my Honeybun.” He said then clinked his glass with Maya’s.
“To us, my wonderful Babe. My one and only, fiance and husband-to-be. I love you.”
They enjoyed the wine while staring at the horizon which they can’t see anymore since it was dark already.
“My love, I think we should call the parents tomorrow and invite them to dinner, para we can tell them about our engagement. Saka para magkakilala na rin ang mga family natin ng formal.” Richard said after a while. “What do you think?”
“Okay with me, Babe.” Maya replied. “Alam na rin naman ni Mom na magpo-propose ka, di ba?”
“Yes, but not the when and how. Maybe she thought din na that this was fast.” Richard said. “Kaya lang, I seized the day na, so to speak. Ayaw na kaya kitang pakawalan.” He said, teasing.
Maya laughed. “Ikaw talaga, Babe. Sa iyong sa iyo naman ako wala ng iba. But I really like your spontaneous proposal.”
“I really liked it too, my love.” Richard said, then moved and stretched his legs so he Maya can sit in between and lean against him. With his arms below her rib cage, they enjoyed the night, exchanging kisses in between. When the kisses got heated, they went back to their cottage and spent the night pleasuring each other.
The following day, they took the car and saw the area. The highlight of their sightseeing was the trip to the Patapat viaduct, the more than one kilometer coastal bridge that connects Ilocos Norte to Cagayan Valley.
“Isn’t this amazing?” Maya said, looking at the vast view before them.
She and Richard found a perfect spot to stop and admire the view from the viaduct. There were not much vehicles in this stretch of the road. On one side, the eyes can feast on the mountains, on the other side, the vast sea. From where they were, they can see the road that just stretches and stretches to somewhere. Maya felt she was standing on the ‘head’ of the Philippines, as was depicted in the map.
“Yes, this is beautiful. I have never been here before.” Richard said as he admired the view. He felt that he and Maya were the only people on earth while standing at that spot.
“Do you know, this is where I was planning to propose to you.” Richard said while he and Maya was sitting on a side of the bridge, looking at the beautiful, and the vast, seemingly unending sea. “I saw some beautiful photos online.”
“Really, Babe?” Maya asked, looked at her fiance.
“Yes, I just thought of the symbolism. Look at that road, all the twists and turns, the graceful way it curves to the next bend, and the next, and the next, and add the beautiful scenery along the way. It is like our journey together, beautiful, with the twists and turns, and bends and discovering what is on the next curve. I’m pretty sure, it will be a wonderful journey.” Richard finished, holding Maya’s chin and looking at her with all the love he can show.
“Babe, awwww, that was a beautiful thing to say! I thought I’m the writer in this relationship.” Maya said, with so much love. “I’m sure it will be a wonderful journey too, the best I will be taking and what makes it the best and the most amazing is that I will take it with you.”
“I love you, Honeybun.”
“I love you Babe.”
Maya and Richard shared a kissed amid the beautiful backdrop. Soon, their gentle kiss, turned into much more. When it was getting heated, the sound of a vehicle penetrated their world. Thet broke apart a bit, and looked. The passengers of the bus bound for Laoag cheered and did good-natured catcalls, apparently, they saw them kissing. They smiled and waved at them.
They stayed there for quite sometime, soaking in all the beauty around them. They returned to their beach place and spent another evening there, loving, and loving each other.
The following day, they called the parents.
Donya Esmeralda was so happy when Richard told her that he and Maya are now engaged. She teased Richard that she is looking forward to her first apo, and that Richard and Maya better make it happen soon. Don Roberto who was listening to his wife’s conversation with their son, also had a huge smile on his face. Mother and son agreed that the dinner will be the following Saturday.
Maya’s mom, on the other hand, got a bit emotional when she found out that her daughter is, indeed, getting married. She was very happy of course. It’s just that, she knew it must be what all the moms feel when their daughters are going to enter into another chapter of their lives. She said that, of course, she will meet her future balaes. She also told her daughter that she is very happy for her and happy that she found herself a good man in Richard.
The rest of the day was spent lazing around and the evening loving each other in every way they could. Maya decided to postpone her article writing when they return to Manila. She have plenty of time to do it. She also have an outline in her head on how she will present the whole thing.
They returned to Manila on the third day. Maya told Richard they need to leave early as she would like to make a long stopover in Santa Maria, Ilocos Sur.
“Why, Honeybun?” He asked, curious.
“Basta, Babe.” Maya simply said.
They took turns driving. When they reached Santa Maria, Maya parked a car in a vacant spot near to where they were going. Then, she grabbed Richard’s hand. They went up, steps after steps, which at first, Richard thought led to nowhere, until when they were almost at the top, and an old, very beautiful church, and a majestic old bell tower came into view. He looked around, where they ascended, and saw that from where they were, they can see the whole town.
“What do you think of this?” Maya smiled at Richard and gestured at the beauty around them.
“I’m just amazed! The place looks so peaceful, and beautiful.” Richard remarked. “That church and this bell tower must be centuries old, and yet they are still here!”
“Yes, it is. The Church of Nuestra Senora dela Asuncion, or simply known as the Santa Maria Church was built in the 18th century. As you can see it is made of bricks. Come, Babe, let’s look around. I have been wanting to see this church for so long. I don’t know why, of all the churches I have seen in photos, this one calls to me.”
They went to the other side and the view of the mountains and beyond was just breathtaking. Richard and Maya also marveled at the architecture of the old church and was amazed at the people who built this monument to their times, brick by brick.
The church door was unlocked. They went to the parish office and asked if they can go in. Inside, it was just simply awesome and one can feel God’s presence. Richard and Maya knelt and prayed. Both of them thanked God for them finding each other, and asked God to bless their relationship, their union. Both promising to be true to each other.
They looked at each other after they have finished praying, as if, even without a formal ceremony, they are binding themselves to each other completely. They went out of the church hand in hand.
“Honeybun, would you like to get married here?” Richard suddenly asked while they were admiring the facade of the church one last time.
Maya was surprised at his sudden question. “Babe, isn’t it a bit far from Manila?”
“I don’t think it will be a problem. Leave the logistics to me.” He said, then cupped her face, “What’s important is, would you like to?”
“Yes, of course. I would love to.” Maya said, giving Richard a brilliant, happy smile. “Thank you, my love.” Then she hugged him tight. They stayed like that for quite sometime. If someone has taken a photo of that moment, they will see a couple, so in love, embracing each other with the centuries old church and the beautiful bell tower in the background.
Maya and Richard navigated the 86 steps down, hand intertwined, and resumed their journey home, marked with conversations that just flowed between them, teasing each other, and sharing quick kisses when they feel like stopping and taking a break from their wonderful journey together.