Maya woke up to a dark bedroom. The only illumination came from the lights filtering through the curtains from the nearby trees. She was disoriented at first, then she remembered where she was. She checked the clock. It was just a little past 6 o’clock in the evening but it was already quite dark. Must be because of all the trees around the place, not to mentioned the shorter days and longer nights during December. She reclined against the headboard, stretching her arms, and trying to remove the remnants of sleep from her system. She ought to get up soon as she is meeting Richard at half past seven o’clock for dinner.
Richard and Maya spent the rest of the afternoon in each other’s company, basking in the glow of their new status! They ate lunch at the main restaurant of the resort. Then Richard took Maya around the place, their hands seemingly glued together as they walked around. To everyone who saw them, they looked like the sweetest couple, with eyes only for each other. Some thought they were newly-weds on honeymoon!
Late in the afternoon, Maya and Richard returned to the bungalow. Richard showed Maya the guest room where she could rest. It is adjacent to the room he will use and overlooking the garden. He told her she could take a nap and he will just return for her for dinner.
Maya thought she will not be able to nap with all the excitement she had that afternoon. But as soon as her head hit the pillow, she fell into a dreamless and very restful sleep.
“Now, time to get moving, Maya Dela Rosa, your boyfriend, the love of your life, is waiting for you!” Maya told herself. Boyfriend, love of her life, words that make her feel giddy by just saying it. Richard is now her boyfriend! Sometimes, it felt like it was just a dream, but looking at her surroundings and remembering all her wonderful times with Richard since they met again, she knows everything is real. That after all these years, she found her Prince Charming again and they are poised to live their happily every after, God willing.
Maya took out a long printed maxi dress from her bag, then took a bath. Thirty minutes after, she was ready for her dinner with Richard. Instead of waiting for him, she decided to just go out of the room and look for him. Richard was not in the living room. She was about to check the veranda when she saw him coming from the direction of the kitchen, holding a wine bucket. He changed clothes, and it looked like he had just been to the shower too. He looked so handsome in blue shirt and khaki pants.
“Sweetheart, good evening! I was about to get you after I put this wine in the porch.” Richard greeted Maya with a big smile. “Did you have a good sleep?”
“Hi Sweetheart, yes I did. It was so quiet and nice. I woke up around 45 minutes ago. The bedroom was dark but there were lights coming from outside.” Maya remarked as she approached Ricky and gave him a kiss on the cheek. “Is there anything I can do to help?”
“The light is probably coming from the capiz lanterns festooned around the branches of the tree outside your window.” Richard explained. “Everything is set, Swetheart. Come your dinner awaits. I hope you will like everything.”
Richard led Maya to the front porch, the one adjacent to the living room by holding on to her elbow to guide her there.
“Wow!” It was all Maya managed to say when she saw what Ricky had prepared for this evening while she was taking a nap.
The place was transformed. In the middle of the porch, there was a table with red table cloth, and a vase with in different kinds of flowers. Completing the romantic ambiance were candles placed in coloured glasses, swaying to the breeze blowing from the sea. The food – pasta, steak, and appetizers so mouthwatering, that Maya’s stomach grumbled just at the sight of the food before her. Suddenly, she is very hungry.
“I want our first evening as boyfriend and girlfriend to be very special, Sweetheart so I had Catherine and Aldrich prepared this for us.” Richard said, smiling, happy that Maya likes what he had prepared.
“Thank you, Sweetheart. I’m touched and very, very happy.” Maya replied, then tiptoed and gave Richard a light kiss on the lips.
Richard smiled happily. “Parang bitin!” He teased naughtily. He reeled Maya to him gently, then kissed her properly.
“Ricky, ikaw talaga.” Maya smiled, her face redder than usual. “Let’s eat.”
Richard seated Maya, then took the seat to her right. He poured the two of them a glass of wine each then offered a toast.
“To the loveliest and most wonderful lady who made me very, very happy today. I love you Maya. To us!” Richard said lovingly. “To fate for making us together finally!”
“Thank you, my dearest Sweetheart! To the best boyfriend in the world, I’m so lucky to have you. I love you. To us!” Maya said with a smile that lit up her whole face, gazing at Richard with all the love that she was feeling for him.
Their dinner was marked with their happy comfortable chatter, not running out of things to talk about or just gazing at each other lovingly. They didn’t notice the passing of the hours, so caught up were they with each other. When dinner was over, they moved to the hammock that was located at the edge of he porch. Richard’s arms were around Maya as she half-laid on his chest as Richard pushed the hammock gently his foot.
“I love this!” Maya said after a while, feeling very relax. “This is very relaxing. I like being in your arms like this, Sweetheart.”
“Me too, Sweetheart! Having you like this is the best feeling.” Richard said. “Do you want to listen to some music?”
“Sure! But do you have a player nearby?” Maya asked, looking around.
“Wait a second.” Richard got out of the hammock, went just inside the living room. Then he returned to Maya as a beautiful music wafted from the speaker embedded in the ceiling of the porch.
“For you, my Sweetheart!” Richard said softly, lovingly, then he started humming with the music.
I had never touched a hand
That felt as soft as rain
I never knew a kiss
Could make me feel this way
But here we are now
Feeling things we’ve never felt before
Richard sang with all his heart, raining little kisses on Maya’s face, until he reached her lips. Maya open her lips to accept Richard, and their lips fused into a hot kiss while the song continued playing in the background.
I never knew that I could feel such wonder
I never dreamed that love could be like this
Yet in this rapture I’m swept away
Lost in your eyes
For tonight, love has come of age
I had never dreamed that I
Would lose my heart so soon
I had never felt my heart
Racing with the moon
Now and forever
Let me live inside your sweet embrace….
Richard and Maya broke apart, both catching their breaths, trying to control the feelings that kiss evoked in each other.
“I love you very much, Maya….
I love you very much too, Ricky….
Maya and Richard whispered to each other as the last lines of the song faded into the night.
For you and I
For tonight, love has come of age
Tonight, love has come of age….
“That was a very beautiful song, Ricky! ” Maya remarked as she settled deeply and more comfortably into Richard’s chest.
“One of my favorite songs, Sweetheart. Bagay sa atin and what I’m feeling for you.” Richard said as he caressed Maya’s hair.
Maya and Richard smiled at each other lovingly and listened to the music from Richard’s iPod, while enjoying the quiet of the night. They stayed in the hammock late into the night, just enjoying each other’s company, basking in the glow of their intense love for each other, reluctant to part.
When it became very windy, Richard carried a sleepy Maya to her room, laid her on the bed, kissed her one more time and with whatever willpower he still possessed, dragged himself to his room. It took a while for Richard to fall asleep, the wonder of the day stayed with him. Indeed, as the song said, his and Maya’s love has come of age after seven years, and he will never let go. It is forever for him and the woman he loves with all of him.
The following morning, Maya was woken up by a knock on her door. She realized where she was. Despite the nap she took, she had felt very sleepy while in the hammock with Richard. It was very nice lying in his arms. She also felt very pampered and treasured when he carried her to bed.
Richard came into the room, when Maya indicated that he could come in, carrying a breakfast tray with a single red rose on it.
“Good morning, Sweetheart!” Richard greeted with a big smile, then proceeded to give Maya a light kiss on the lips. “Did you sleep well?”
“Good morning, Sweetheart!” Maya was all smiles. “Yes, I did! Parang ang saya-saya ng boyfriend ko this morning ah.”
“Of course naman, Sweetheart. Why wouldn’t I. You are my girlfriend now and you are here with me! I made breakfast for the two of us.” Richard said grinning, placing the tray in the middle of the bed.
“Ricky, sobra-sobra na akong spoiled sa iyo.” Maya said.”Thank you!”
“Maya, Sweetheart, I’m happy to do this. Kulang pa iyan. Imagine, seven years in the making nga di ba?” Richard replied, smiling. “Halika na kain na tayo. I hope my omelette is okay. I had Catherine stocked the kitchen here too para we can make our own food if we feel like it.”
“That’s a good idea!” Maya said, then started serving Richard the food he prepared and making his coffee too.
“Sarap talaga nitong coffee mo, Sweetheart! “ Richard said as he took his first sip. “By the way, we can go to San Nicolas today if you want.”
“Really, I would like that.” Maya said. “Can we go hear mass muna sa San Nicolas Church, then visit Mamang’s grave after, magkalapit lang naman iyong church at saka iyong memorial park kung saan siya nakalibing.”
“Sure, Sweetheart, anything you want.” Richard replied.
“Thank you.” Maya said. “Masarap naman itong omelette mo. Marunong ka palang magluto.” Maya teased.
“Welllll, I think my culinary skills is very limited. Iyan lang and spaghetti bolognese ang kaya ko yatang lutuin!” Richard quipped.
“Well, I want to try that spaghetti too. I’m sure kasing sarap nitong omelette mo.” Maya said.
“Sure, pagbalik natin ng Maynila, I will cook that for you.” Richard said. “What time would you like us to leave pala so I can ask Aldrich to prepare one of the company cars?”
“Pagkatapos nating kumain and mag-shower is okay with me.” Maya replied, finishing the last of her omelette and bread.
“Good.” Richard replied. “Ako na lang ang magda-drive para we can spend the whole day ng tayong dalawa lang.” He added with a big smile. Maya smiled back, liking the idea. She always look forward to her and Richard’s time like that.
Richard and Maya chatted some more while finishing their cups of coffee. Several minutes after, and despite Maya’s insistence that she will do it, Richard took the tray back to the kitchen. He just told Maya to get ready.
More than an hour later, with Maya wearing another of her maxi skirts and a baby tee, and Richard in jeans and polo shirt, they were on their way to the church. They arrived at the beautiful centuries old church in the time for the mass. Richard and Maya, both asked God to bless their relationship. They also thanked Him for making them meet again and giving them a chance to finally love each other. Each of them vowed that they will love the other forever.
Maya and Richard also found themselves gazing each other with all the love they are feeling during the priest’s homily, as being the last Sunday before the Ne Year, he spoke of new beginnings, a better and brighter future for the coming year, of looking forward to 2015 with optimism and spending time with the people you love all the time as life is short and uncertain, and because time flies fast.
They left the church holding hands. They decided to leave the car at the church grounds and then just walked to the nearby memorial park where Conchita Dela Paz was buried. Maya and Richard bought flowers and candles at the shop they saw near the church.
“Mamang, kumusta na po. I still miss you very much.” Maya said softly as she arranged the flowers at the base of Mamang’s grave. “Pasensya ka na kung ngayon na lang ulit kita nadalaw. Bayaan mo mas madalas na ngayon since I’m back in the Philippines for good.”
Richard handed Maya the lighted candles which she also placed at the base of the grave. “Mamang, kasama mo nga po pala si Ricky. Boyfriend ko po. My one and only love.” Maya whispered softly, but Richard still heard. He smiled.
“Mamang, sumama nga po ako kay Maya rito para madalaw ko rin kayo. Kahit po hindi na tayo pinalad na magkita, parang kilala ko na rin kayo sa mga kwento sa akin ng apo niyo.” Richard said, interlacing his fingers with Maya. “Huwag po kayong mag-aalala, I will take good care of Maya as long as I live. I will make her happy always.” He vowed.
Maya felt so happy and so lucky hearing Richard promising this on her grandmother’s grave. She gazed at him with so much love. “Mamang, I’m the luckiest girl, with Ricky as my boyfriend. I’m sure kung makikilala mo siya, you will like him a lot also. For sure Mamang, botong-boto ka sa kanya.”
Richard smiled happily as Maya said those words to her grandmother. He caressed her hand as if to express his thanks and love for her.
Richard and Maya stayed at Mamang grave for an hour, regaling her of their story, as if she was alive and in front of them listening to their chatter.
“Mamang, dadalaw na lang ulit kami ni Ricky ha.” Maya said, touching her grandmother’s tomb as if she needed the contact as she said goodbye.
“Oo nga po, Mamang. Pangako po namin ni Maya, iyan.” Richard added. “Sweetheart, can you give me a moment with Mamang, please.” Richard asked Maya all of a sudden.
Maya was surprised at Richard’s request, but decided to do the asking later. She said goodbye to her grandmother, then waited outside the mausoleum for Richard.
Richard stayed inside for several minutes, then like Maya touched Mamang’s tomb to say goodbye.
“So, ano naman ang sinabi mo kay Mamang na hindi ko pwedeng marinig?” Maya asked as they were walking towards the gate of the memorial park.
Richard just smiled at Maya. “ It’s between me and Mamang muna, Sweetheart.”
“Ricky Lim, ang daya mo ha. May secret ka na ngayon.” Maya said smiling.
“Sweetheart, ito lang, promise, you will know in due time.” Richard appealed to his girlfriend.
“O sige na nga. I’m sure malalaman ko rin iyan.” Maya said confidently.
“Yes you will, Sweetheart. Yes you will.” Richard said enigmatically, looking forward to that moment.
Richard interlaced his fingers with Maya, then raised her hand to his lips and kissed it lovingly. Soon, my love, he vowed silently.
“I love you Maya!”
“I love you, Ricky!”
Richard and Maya shared another loving look as they exited the memorial park. And from somewhere above, an old lady smiled.
Note: The super beautiful song ‘Love Has Come of Age’ is from the concept album of the musical Jekyll and Hyde! The song is sobrang nakaka-in love! If you want to listen to the complete song, the link is in my Playlist! ❤ ❤ ❤