Posts Tagged Windblown

Windblown – Finale

‘Love has come of age’

The main room of the San Nicolas Golf and Country Club was transformed into something akin to a ballroom of a castle, complete with glittering chandeliers, and antique furnishings from a bygone era. Flowers of all varieties, with sunflowers being the dominant ones, colorful lanterns, and tea light candles in decorative glasses, added color and elegance to the place. The conversation flowed freely and loudly. Laughter and merriment  can be heard from every table, interspersed with the constant clanging of knives, forks, and spoons against wine glasses, as the guests clamored for the beautiful couple sitting on the dais decorated with an over abundance of sunflowers and roses to kiss, and kiss, and kiss. They have obliged with much gusto, and with grins lighting up their joyous faces as their happiness that evening was indescribable.

Everyone was having a wonderful time as they celebrated the union of two people whom they wholeheartedly believed were really destined to be together, no matter what, as not the distance, nor the years, and the circumstances managed to keep them apart. Those who knew that their love story started at San Nicolas more than seven years ago, felt that they have come full circle with this beautiful couple too.

Earlier that lovely Saturday afternoon, Maya Dela Rosa, Miss Mindoro 2007, and Richard Lim, the Chairman of the Board of Judges of that pageant night, had their union blessed by God, in front of their families and closest friends. It was like Prince Charming finally marrying his Cinderella, after searching for her everywhere, and through the years. If it is a fairy tale story, it would have narrated that the prince didn’t fall in love until he finally got reunited with his princess. The princess was the same, pining for her prince as she traveled the world. Her heart only beat for the handsome prince she caught a glimpse and connected with profoundly, a long, long time ago.  And now as they wed and with a baby on the way, they are living their happily ever after.

Maya and Richard families and friends can’t help it but get teary-eyed inside the beautiful, centuries old San Nicolas Church which had witnessed marriages being celebrated throughout its long history, as they listened to the vows exchanged between these two, coming from the bottom of their hearts. The vows told of their beautiful beginnings, of their love for each other that didn’t wane with the passing of time, and despite the fact they didn’t see each other for seven very long years, of their promises to each other as they journey towards their forever. After they uttered their heartfelt vows, tagos sa puso as most of those present will say to them later, all those present stood up, clapped and cheered with the couple. Everyone was just so happy that after all that they have been through, that there they were, about to become man and wife in front of God. When everyone has quieted down, the priest, a family friend of the Dela Paz’ continued with the ceremony, with a big smile on his old, wise face, joining in the happiness of everyone present, feeling the love between the bride and the groom that transcends everything. Ha had celebrated countless of weddings, and for him this one is very special because of the emotions and the happy vibes he can feel from everyone for this loving couple.

Maya walked down the aisle in a beautiful gown made of delicate lace with a fitted bodice, very short sleeves, a flared skirt, cinched at the waist with a ribbon. It was a gown fit for a princess. It was similar to the tea-length wedding dress that Audrey Hepburn had worn in the movie ‘Funny Face’. Maya loved that dress so much and she had wanted something in that style for her wedding dress. When the door of the church opened and she started walking towards Richard, in her very long unstructured veil, kept in place by a headband adorned with small pearls, everyone gasped at how beautiful and radiant she was.

Richard, when he saw his beautiful bride, felt his throat getting constricted, choked with emotions, he looked across the long aisle of the church decorated in tulips, roses of all varieties, and sunflowers to where his bride was, walking slowly towards him in the arms of her Tito Mario. He gave her a smile that lit up his whole handsome face. In response, his lovely bride gave him a tremulous smile, so full of love for him.

Maya felt at that moment that it was just her in Richard in the church. All the murmurs of the guests and the sound of the beautiful bridal music being played by the orchestra they hired for the occasion just faded in the background as she and Richard shared a look, a look that spoke that at last, they were there, about to become man and wife in every sense of the world, that this was the moment they have been waiting for. Maya also touched her tummy and silently communicated to their unborn child what she was feeling at that instance.

Throughout the ceremony, Richard and Maya communicated to each other the love and happiness they were feeling at that moment with the loving looks, smiles, and the heated gazes they have exchanged. When it was time to kiss the bride, Richard did it with so much feelings, which prompted their guests to tease them mercilessly. While he was doing so, he also surreptitiously caressed Maya’s tummy, as if to include their baby in the momentous occasion in his/her parents’ lives.

“I love you very much, Mrs. Maya Lim!” Richard whispered after he and Maya shared a kiss for the third time.

“I love you very much too, Mr. Richard Lim.” Maya whispered back, then cupped Richard’s face and initiated their fourth kiss at the altar amid the happy teasing of their guests.

With faces flushed, they looked and smiled radiantly at their families and friends. Both of them, felt like they were floating in outer space, weightless, from sheer happiness, and that, finally, they are husband and wife. The feeling of being blessed and finally being announced as husband and wife for the first time was indescribable for both of them. Indeed, “Mr. and Mrs. Richard and Maya Lim’ has the most wonderful ring!

The guests all proceeded to the San Nicolas Golf and Country Club for the reception, which are being hosted by Maya’s cousin Cristina Rose and her friend Emman who flew all the way from Singapore to attend her wedding, after the picture-taking in the church which was also marked by happy laughter and hugs and kisses for the lovely couple. Richard and Maya rode in an open vintage car adorned in calla lilies and sunflowers for the short trip to the country club, incorporating into the wedding, Maya’s love of old movies.

Now, here they are, more than an hour into their beautiful, fun-filled reception. Cristina Rose and Emman as hosts were a hit, considering that they only met each other several days ago. They had everyone in stitches. The guests also oohed and ahhed  when the same day edit of their wedding video was screened. Everyone, most specially Maya and Richard, also a wonderful trip down memory lane as video clips from the Miss Mindoro Pageant that Maya joined and where Richard was a judge, including the question and answer portion, was shown at the reception after the wedding video. Richard and Maya shared a look, feeling very, very nostalgic, seeing their younger selves and remembering that this was where they started. They didn’t know that the video will be shown. It was a surprise cooked by Tita Lulu, Cristina Rose, and Donya Esme with the cooperation of Rebecca Bermudez, who is among Richard and Maya’s wedding sponsors.

“Sweetheart, do you want more food? Remember you are eating for two now.” Richard whispered to Maya. They have just returned to their place on the dais after doing the reception ceremonies, which included them feeding each other a slice of cake and toasting each other, with Maya only having a small sip of tea, instead of the champagne due to her condition, and the bouquet and garter throwing. “I know you were not able to eat much, earlier.” Then he touched Maya’s tummy and the small bump there. “How are you there, little buddy, enjoying Mommy and Daddy’s wedding reception?”

“Sweetheart, I’m okay. The baby and I are okay. Ikaw din, hindi ba, hindi ka rin nakakain ng husto?” Maya asked, then teased her husband, “Sige ka, ikaw rin, baka wala ka ng energy sa honeymoon natin.”

Richard grinned at that and then whispered naughtily at Maya, “Ha sweetheart, ako pa superman yata ito. Whatever you want and whatever you wish, I can give it to you later, all night long. I missed you kaya last night.”

“Hmmm,  ikaw talaga, para isang gabi lang tayong hindi magkasama ah.” Maya replied, whispering back. As per tradition, Maya and Richard didn’t stay with each other the day before the wedding. Maya stayed at the Dela Paz’s ancestral house with her Tita Lulu and Tito Mario. That is where they will spend their first two nights too as husband and wife. While Tita Lulu and Tito Mario will stay at the resort, where most of the guests are staying. It is another Dela Paz family tradition which they would like to do, for Mamang na rin whom they have visited the day after they returned to Mindoro. Just like with Maya’s parents, they told Mamang about their wedding.

“Sweetheart, it felt like eternity kaya! In fact, hindi  nga ako nakatulog ng maayos kasi wala ka sa tabi ko.” Richard whispered. “Nasanay ka ako na katabi kita since we got together.”

“Truth to tell, Sweetheart. Ako rin.” Maya admitted sheepishly. “Nagising nga ako, in the middle of the night, I was expecting that you were there, pero mag-isa lang pala ako sa room.”

“See, kaya mamaya, babawi ako ng husto, Mrs. Lim.” Richard teased his lovely bride, who despite everything they have done together, still blushes at his naugthy teasing,

“Sure, Mr. Lim.” Maya replied with a big smile, anticipating their first night as husband and wife.

They gazed at each other heatedly, then kissed softly.

“Eheemmm, Mr. and Mrs. Lim….” Emman said. “Mr. and Mrs. Richard Lim…. Newly weds, your attention please….”

Finally, after the third time, Emman’s voice, with Cristina Rose’s teasing second, penetrated Maya and Richard’s world. They smiled sheepishly and goofily.

“Mr. and Mrs. Lim, first dance muna as husband and wife, mamaya pa ng kaunti ang start ng honeymoon ninyo.” Emman teased the happy couple amid the good-nature catcalls of their guests.

Richard held out his hand to Maya to guide her to the center of the room which was cleared for dancing as the strains of their favorite song, “Love Has Come of Age’ floated in. They looked at each other with so much love, then with eyes only for each other, danced to their own private rhythm, as closed as two person can get while dancing.

“I really love this song, sweetheart. Tamang-tama sa love story natin. I so love you very much. Sometimes, I can still believe that we are at this moment now. I still felt at times that I am still dreaming!” Maya whispered to Richard.

“Believe, sweetheart. I love you very much, and this is real. What we have is real. What we started more than seven years ago is now a reality. Our love has come of age, as the song said, at the right time and the right circumstances! See, after meeting each other again, it just flowed and now here we are.” Richard whispered back with so much feelings in his voice. “And I agree, my love, this song will always be special to me, to us.”

The two of them continued swaying to the beautiful music, feeling each other’s happiness, this overwhelming love for each other, and remembering their beginning, their meeting again after seven long years, the time they have spent since then, the discovery that they will have a baby, and the week leading to their wedding, which became a celebration of their upcoming nuptials, with their guests having a wonderful time at the picnic place near ‘their’ waterfall, to nights spent in their own private world in the bungalow, lost in each other, and still not getting enough of each other, until this beautiful, beautiful of all days.

When the song has ended, everyone clapped and tapped their glasses. Richard and Maya obliged and shared long kiss in front of their guests one more time. Their sweet music was replaced with an upbeat one and they have led the dancing from then on. The party lasted long. Like Cinderella, Richard and Maya said goodbye to their guests at midnight. The wedding car took them to the Dela Paz ancestral home, wrapped in each other’s arm, with Maya’s head pillowed on Richard’s chest.

The place was lit by electric ‘gas’ lamps, strategically place from the gate to the intricate stairs that let to the main living area of the house. There were also flowers in various pots, which were not there when Maya left the house that morning in her beautiful bridal dress. The stairs, up to the balkonahe were also full of rose and sunflower petals. Richard guided Maya up the beautiful stairs and when they have reached the doors that led to the living room, he kissed her.

“Our home here also, sweetheart.” Maya said softly.

“Yes, sweetheart.” Richard replied.

Richard then carried a laughing Maya over the threshold of the old place, that have seen countless Dela Paz’s brides doing so through the years. Richard only put Maya down when they were inside the master’s bedroom of the house. They decided that it will be their room from now on when they are staying here. The only thing that they removed from Maya’s room and transferred to their new bedroom was the big antique bed. The house has been renovated under Richard’s supervision in late February.

“Happy, my dearest wife?” Richard asked as he hugged Maya from the back, putting his arms around her waist and nuzzling her neck, giving her tiny kisses that awakened her senses very fast.

“Sobra-sobra, my husband.” Maya turned, and smiled lovingly at her husband. She tiptoed and touched her lips to his. “I love you more than life itself.” She whispered softly.

“I love you very much, my sweetheart. “Richard said, caressing Maya’s face. “You are my life now.”

Husband and wife, shared a look, and with that, understood each other. Both of them were feeling very much alive and aware of each other despite the lateness of the hour and the long day they had. Richard slowly unbuttoned the lace vintage dress that Maya changed into during their wedding reception. He punctuated his action with little kisses, on every part of Maya’s skin he exposed. The dress pooled o Maya’s feet and she was left clad in a lace strapless bra and undies that left little to the imagination. Richard caught his breath. His bride is very beautiful, especially with the slight bump on her tummy. He gave her one more kiss, then he carried and laid her gently on the bed, which was full of rose petals and adorned by tea light candles on each of the side tables, giving a softly, romantic and other worldly feel to the beautiful old room. The old four-poster bed was screen with lace curtains, evoking a feel of being transported to a bygone era.

Richard stood up again and slowly removed his tie, then slowly unbuttoned his dress shirt, revealing his broad, muscular chest. It was Maya’s turn to look and admire her husband’s physique. She looked at him heatedly with desire on her eyes as she waited for him to completely reveal himself to her. Richard slowly removed his pants, until it pooled at his feet. With a hot look at his wife, he removed his last piece of clothing and walked slowly towards the bed. For Maya, Richard looked like a sleek panther about to claim his mate. She will never get tired of marveling at her husband’s physique.

The bed dipped a bit when Richard sat on the side. He slowly caressed Maya’s face with the back of his hand. Then he traced the seam of her lips with his thumb, heightening Maya’s awareness of him. Maya’s tongue darted out, touched Richard’s thumb, then she sucked on it. Richard’s other hand, moved to unfasten Maya’s strapless lace bra, which fell to the bed, and started touching her aching breasts. His thumb in her mouth was placed by his lips giving her a searing kiss. Richard’s tongue sought entrance to Maya’s mouth, seeking hers, wanting to mate. Richard seared Maya’s lips with hot kisses as his hand played mercilessly with her breasts, massaging them one after the other, tweaking at her nipples, inflaming them, a fire that electrified her up to her core. Maya combed Richard’s hair, caressing him every part of  his body she could touch. Richard’s hand moved lower and started wreaking havoc there. Maya gasped. She groped for Richard’s hard length, wanting to give him the same pleasure he was giving her.

“Rickyyyy……” Maya whispered, the passion he has ignited in her getting too much. “I’m on fire…..”

“Maya, the thing you do to me, sweetheart….” Richard muttered as Maya continued with the assault she was doing on his body.

Both of them continued driving each other mad, to the limits of the passion and pleasure they can endure and evoke from each other that wonderful night, and when they can’t stand it anymore, Richard kissed Maya’s breasts before he positioned himself on top of her and joined their bodies. They moved to the wonderful rhythm that they have perfected since the first time they made love, driving each other to the heights, soaring, and reaching fulfillment together. It was as wonderful as their first time to make love that New Year’s day.  However, another beautiful layer has been added to this one, as this is the first time they did it as husband and wife.

Richard kissed Maya’s face and lips. “I love you, sweetheart. That was….” He swallowed, full of emotions.

“This was more wonderful than before!” Maya finished, seeing that her husband was choked with emotion. “I felt it too, sweetheart. I felt like our souls melded dear husband. I love you very much. I felt our coming together up to my soul. I felt it the first time, but this one, doubly so. I never thought our coming together would get any better that it already was, but it just did!”

“You just said what I feel, sweetheart.” Richard said, his voice overwhelmed with feelings. “I’m sure we will always be like this.”

Maya laid at the crook of Richard’s arm, hugging him. Richard put a blanket over them, and they slept naked. They woke up at dawn and another fire smouldered between them, and which they banked with the rhythm they have established.

Maya and Richard stayed at the old house another day as they have planned, lost in their own universe. They only existed for each other, and each other’s pleasure. Then on the third day, they returned to their bungalow at Emerald, their own very special place. They spent the rest of the week there, swimming, making love, relaxing. They return to Manila, but only stayed overnight as they embarked on their honeymoon that took them first to New York. Richard fulfilled Maya’s wish to go up the top of the Empire State Building, just like in  the movie ‘An Affair to Remember’. Then they flew to London, Paris and Rome, which was Richard last treat to Maya. He told her, he wanted her to have her Princess Ann moment too. They went around the places that were featured in Maya’s favorite movie. Maya thanked her husband profusely. She told her that unlike Princess Ann, she got her prince in the end and that she is living her happily ever after!

Maya and Richard returned to the Philippines after three weeks, and resumed their respective jobs at Emerald. Despite their busy days, they made sure that they will have their ‘you and me’ time always. They have moved to Richard’s much bigger place and just sold Maya’s condo to one of Richard’s cousins who wanted to move to BGC. Maya had it easy with her pregnancy after the first trimester had passed. During her second trimester, they received a wonderful news. Maya was carrying twins, a boy and a girl! They were overjoyed, thank God profusely for all the blessings coming their way. Two babies at once! Richard teased Maya that after the twins are born, they just need to work on four more, which earned him a loving pinch from his wife. After they have found that they will have two babies, Maya worked on decorating the nursery that Richard had done even before they found out that she was pregnant, for two beautiful angels instead of one. Around six months after they got married, their precious babies whom they have named Sky and Sunshine were born.

“Parang kamukha na ng mga Lim. See, balae, singkit ang mga mata! Lalo na itong si Sky, parang si Ricky lang noong baby.” Donya Esmeralda told Lulu Francisco, as she carried Sky in her arm.

“Pero balae, itong si Sunshine, Dela Paz na Dela Paz ang face. Medyo kitang-kita na ngayong three-month old na sila. Parang si Maya lang noong baby siya.” Maya’s Tita Lulu countered as she carried a sleeping Sunshine in her arms. “Tingnan mo ang mga pilik-mata, Balae.”

“Ma, Tita Lulu, hindi ba pwedeng pareho na lang na may nakuha sa amin ni Ricky.” Maya said, as she looked at her mother-in-law and aunt, indulgently.

“Oo nga naman, Mama, Tita Lulu.” Richard added with a big smile, holding his wife’s hand as they sat in their living room as they entertained the two older ladies, that Sunday. Truth to tell, the two of them have been frequent visitors to their house, wanting to see their youngest grandchildren, in the case of Tita Lulu and her firsts, in the case of Donya Esmeralda, often. “Maya and I also did that just after the twins were born, you know. Contest kami kung sino ang kamukha.” He added laughing.

The two ladies laughed at that. “Oo naman, Balae.” Donya Esmeralda said. “Pasensya na kayong dalawa, ang kulit namin ni Balae.”

“Oo nga, Richard, Maya. Our apos as so cute kasi.” Tita Lulu added. “Nakakagigil talaga itong sina Sky and Sunshine. O basta, you need to go somewhere for the resorts and such, o kaya naman para sa second honeymoon, nandito lang kamni ni Balaeng Esme para mag-alaga sa mga apo namin.”

Maya and Richard thanked their parents for the offer. The two ladies stayed at the younger Lims’ resident until dinner. Indeed, they are so lucky to have them. One thing they are 101 percent sure of, their children and their future children will be very much-loved. While Maya has returned to work at the hotel after giving birth, she made it a point to go home early and be with the twins most of the time. Richard had cut back on his traveling too, and is concentrating on the design side of the business. Most of the time, he works from home so one of them have to be with the twins, even if one of the older Lims trusted and longtime kasambahay, Doris, and her friend Lea are the children’s nannies now.

That evening, Maya had a special treat for her wonderful husband, who is her partner in every sense of the word, especially with taking care of the kids. He didn’t know how, having no siblings and younger cousin, but he had learned and had concentrated on learning, just like one of his designs – to change the babies diaper, to give them milk when they get hungry from the breastmilk Maya pumped and stores in their fridge when she started going back to work! He is a very devoted father and very wonderful and the most loving husband.

Maya took a long bath. Then she took out a beautiful lace nightgown that she ordered from the online store of a well-known shop that specializes in women’s lingerie. Her husband was not yet in the room when she got out of the bath. She knows where he is. Putting on the wrap that goes with the gown, she went to the nursery. True enough, her husband clad only in pajama bottoms was standing between the two cribs, a big loving smile on his face as he stares at their beautiful angels.

“Sweetheart….” Maya said softly, so as not to wake up the kids, then hugged Richard from the back, planting a small kiss  near his shoulder blades. “Bed? I think they will sleep throughout the night again as they have been doing now the past week.”

The effect of that touch and kiss, coupled Maya’s soft  voice, on Richard was instantaneous. It felt like he was touch by an electric rod. He caught his breath. He turned around and saw for the first time what his beautiful wife is wearing, then smiled hugely. “Sweetheart, you are the most beautiful wife. Be it with while feeding and bathing our babies, or like this.” He said, softly, lovingly, desire in his eyes.

Maya smiled and intertwined her hands around Richard’s nape, then she whispered, “Well, I thought we should start making baby number three this evening, sweetheart.”

Richard grinned, like he had won the lotto that night! He and Maya have not gotten around discussing this aspect of their married life, the resumption of their physical relationship, as they had concentrated on the twins. He gave his wife a searing kiss. Then he carried her to their room after whispering, “Lead on, sweetheart.”

Like Maya had said, the twins slept through the night, and she and Richard spent the night making love, reacquainting themselves in each other’s body, pleasuring each other.

“I love you very much, Ricky.” Maya whispered, feeling sleepy after the second time they have made love.

“I love you very, very much too, Maya.” Richard said, planting a kiss on Maya’s thoroughly loved mouth. Then he put the blanket over them, sleeping spoon-like without any clothes on.

Nine months later, little Sky and Sunshine’s baby sister, Abby, was born to their very happy and industrious parents.

 

Note: That ends another story I enjoyed writing and sharing with you! Thank you very much again from the bottom of my heart for reading and enjoying my stories. I may not be able to reply to each and every comment you made, and thank you for all the likes, and just for reading, as I see in my page views, but I would like you to know that I appreciate you taking the time do so. Seeing and reading those comments, likes and visits, inspires me. Good vibes as always! Happy Sunday! ❤ ❤ ❤

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Windblown – Chapter 22

‘Bundles of Joy’

“Shhhhh, little sweetheart, don’t cry. Gutom ka na ba? Sandali na lang, little Maggie.” Maya whispered lovingly to the beautiful baby girl she is cradling very gently in her arms. “Mommy is just here. Hintay lang ng kaunti, little angel.” She then proceeded to dance around with the baby, humming and rocking gently, so she will settle down, while waiting for her mother to return.

Richard looked on at Maya with so much love in his eyes as she does that. “I love you, sweetheart.” He whispered, full of emotions. She looks more beautiful with the baby in her arms. Not just beautiful, she looks radiant! Maya gave him a beautiful smile, so full of love for this wonderful guy. She is in a constant state of happiness and contentment because of this wonderful, handsome man. She silently mouthed ‘I love you too’, so as not to disturb the baby who had settled in her arms, finally.

“Naku, Maya, pasensya ka na at natagalan ako. But you and Ricky are a godsend.” Cristina Rosa said several minutes after, going down the stairs with her hair still wet from the shower she took. “Thank you for taking care of Maggie. That was nice, finally, nakapag-shower na rin ako. Mabuti dumating kayong dalawa ni Richard. Ito naman kasing si Helen ang tagal namang bumalik. Ano na kaya ang nangyari roon?” Helen is the Macavintas’ kasambahay. She also watches over Maggie for Cris when she needs to be somewhere. Cris, since she had stopped working, refused to get a nanny for Maggie, opting to be a full time mother for now. She had asked Helen to run and errand for her earlier.

When Maya and Richard arrived earlier, they found a frazzled Cris, alone as Jeff took Cho to his piano lessons. Helen, whom, she was expecting more than an hour before that, hasn’t return. Maya and Richard offered to help so Cris can attend to some of the stuffs she needed to do. Cris told them she would like a shower first to make her feel alive as she was awake quite early with Maggie. She also got wet giving Maggie a bath earlier and needed to change, anyway.

“Okay lang, Ate Cris. She is an angel. Smells so very, very nice and nakakagigil ang cheeks.” Maya said, looking lovingly at baby Maggie, or Mary Margaret Macavinta, who was by then, two weeks old already. “I don’t think I will get tired of looking at this little cutie pie.”

Cris smiled lovingly at her daughter. “Yes, she is. My little angel girl.” The baby then moved, as if sensing her mother and food! Cris took the baby from Maya’s arms. “Baka gutom na kaya medyo umiingit na. Sandali ha, I will just breastfeed her.” Cris then picked up her breastfeeding shawl and then proceeded to feed her daughter as she talked to Richard and Maya who are visiting her again for the third time that week, usually before they go to work. But that day being a Saturday, they arrived a bit later than usual. Kasama yata si little Maggie sa napaglihian ng pinsan niya, maliban sa cheeks, smile at smell ni Richard!

“So, is everything set for the wedding?” She asked them as she settled into the rocking chair, and the baby latching hungrily at her breast. Maya looked at her intently, fascination on her face, thinking that it would be her turn to be like this soon. Cris saw her. “Yes, cousin, in six months time, ikaw na ito.” She said, smiling. “Kumusta, pala ang pakiramdam mo? Hindi ka na madalas magsuka?”

Maya and Richard setlled in into the comfortable sofa, holding hands. “Hindi na masyado, Ate Cris since, I think patapos na ang first tri-mester ko. Iyon nga lang I feel very sleepy pa rin, especially in the afternoon.” She said, then added, “Saka I still crave a lot for ripe mangoes and Ricky’s smell, hahahaha, not to mention his poor cheeks.”

“Hay naku, Cris, malapit nang maging perpetual red itong cheeks ko sa kapipisil nitong pinsan mo, at mauubusan na ako ng bango sa kaka-sniff nitong pinsan mo. Tapos hindi pa ako allowed mag-perfume. Hay the  thing one does for the love of….” Richard jested, touching his wife-to-be’s lovely face, more radiant now with their precious angel growing inside her. When they make love, which is in the same pace they were doing it before the discovery of the pregnancy, he can see a bit of her baby bump and it made her look so more beautiful in his eyes.

“Ikaw talaga, husband-to-be, kahit kailan, corny ang lines mo. Besides, you love me anyway.” Maya said, then grinning, she teased her fiance. “Saka if I know, gustong-gusto mo naman na sininghot-singhot kita. Lalo na doon sa favorite part of your body na love na love kong i-sniff!”  Maya added impishly.

Richard felt himself, blushing, of all things, thinking that Maya will reveal which part is that! “Maya……!”  Then added, “We are scandalizing, Cris!” He protested good-naturedly.

Cris looked at her cousin and her cousin’s fiance and gave them an indulgent smile. “Hay naku, by now, I am used to the two of you. Pero saan nga ba ang favorite part mong i-smell, Maya?” She teased the two of them.

“Hahahaha, ito namang si sweetheart, kung maka-blush, akala tuloy ni Ate Cris kung saan. Sa neck lang ha.” Then she proceeded to kiss Richard on the neck in full view of Cris. “I can’t get enough of this.” The two of them shared a look and a secret smile since there is another part of Richard’s body Maya loves touching, and planting small kisses on, nothing really to do with lihi, but it is something, just for the two of them to know. Maya loves touching and planting little kisses on Richard’s broad chest, moving all over slowly, which drives him crazy all the time.

“Sweetheart, ikaw talaga.” Richard said, getting affected by the touch, and his thoughts of their intimate moments kicking in, but of course, he will not admit it, and show it, as Maya and him are not alone at the moment! He tried to hide his body’s reaction to Maya’s touch. Her touch never fails to elicit a reaction in him. “Kakaiba talaga iyang lihi mo. Pero okay na rin iyan kaysa naman pinaghahanap mo ng purple na guava in the middle of the night or other weird cravings.”

“You are lucky, husband to be. Hindi katulad ni Kuya Jeff, di ba Ate Cris.” Maya said, looking at her cousin, who was happily smiling at them.

“Naku, oo. I was impossible when I was pregnant with Cho.” Cris said, then she stood up. “Sandali ha, ilalagay ko lang sa crib si Maggie. Busog na kaya tulog na.” Cris stood up and put Maggie in the crib that was place in the corner of the living room which Cris and Jeff converted into a downstairs ‘nursery’ para hindi naiiwan mag-isa sa room niya si Maggie. Then she went back to where her cousin and cousin-in-law to be are. “Hayan, mamaya na ang gising niyan. Maaga rin kasing nagising kanina. Pero tulog naman most of the night kagabi.”

“Nakakatuwa naman si Maggie. Sana ganyan din ang little girl namin ni Ricky.” Maya said, caressing her tummy.

“Little girl talaga, sweetheart! Malay mo naman boy iyan. Ricky Junior talaga iyan!” Richard teased Maya. It has been a running banter between them since they found out that she is pregnant. “Malakas ang feeling ko na boy iyan, sweetheart!”

“Ha, dream on, sweetheart, mother’s instinct, girl ito!” Maya quipped back, then look at Ricky lovingly, “But seriously, sweetheart, boy or girl, basta healthy and okay ang baby natin okay na ako doon. Sobrang happy ko na.”

“Me too, sweetheart.” Richard said softly, caressing Maya’s tummy, then planting a quick kiss on it.

“Hay, before you too, turn mushy much again in front of me, ikukuha ko na muna kayo ng maiinom. Sorry, I forgot earlier. “Cris said indulgently, teasing the couple. “Coffee, tea or juice, Richard? Itong si Maya, alam mo na ang default nito, juice for the next six months or so.”

“Coffee na lang please, Cris. Thank you.” Richard reply. ” I can do it, so you two can chat.” He offered.

“Okay, sige nga Richard. You know your way around our kitchen by now.  Juice na lang rin for me, please. Thank you very much.” Cris said. The last month or so, Richard and Maya have been a regular fixture in the Macavinta household. There were times that Jeff and Richard cooked for the ladies.  Well, it was mostly Jeff who does the cooking and Richard just helped out. Jeff is a good cook and as Richard admitted, he is just a passable cook!

Richard disappeared into the kitchen. Cris faced Maya. “So, going back to my first question, is everything set for your wedding?”

“Yes, Ate Cris. Okay na naman lahat. Sus, you doubted pa ba iyan, eh parang mga general na mag-prepare sina Mama and Tita Lulu! Parang hindi na nga namin kailangan si Corrinne sa sobrang efficient ng dalawang iyan. Ready na lahat.” Maya said at length. “As scheduled, Ricky and I will fly na tomorrow sa Mindoro since start na ng leave namin sa Emerald on Monday until our honeymoon na iyon. Then, you and the rest of our wedding party, on Wednesday, then we do the rehearsals, Thursday and Friday, then Richard and I’s big day on Saturday, finally!”

“Glad to know that. I agree with you, parang mga general iyang sina Mom and Tita Esme.” Cris said, then hugging her cousin out of the blue, she said, “Awwww, little sis, this is it!!! I’m so happy for you!!!” Cris said, getting a bit teary-eyed. “I’m sure your Mommy and Daddy and Mamang are smiling in heaven and are very happy for you.”

Maya felt emotional too, all of a sudden. “Oo nga, Ate Cris. I just wished, you know, sometimes, they had lived to see this day. That they will be with me when Ricky and I pledge to love one another until forever in front of God and our family and friends.”

“Don’t worry, Maya. Ako, I believe that they will be there in spirit. They will be there. Maybe it was them nga who sent Richard to you again, so that you will not be alone, so that there is a wonderful someone who will be with you for always, in good times and bad times, and someone who will cherish you like you ought to be cherished. You did find yourself a wonderful man in Richard, Maya. I’m so glad and happy.” Cris said. “Di ba, so many things that are hard to explain in this world, how people met, how they end up together, despite the odds, that sort of thing. Why not believe that they have a hand in this too? Think of them as your guardian angels now.”

“Oh, what a very nice thing to say, Ate Cris. I know naman na hindi ako alone, with you, and your family there, pero you are right, Richard completes me. I never thought I would feel this happy. Sometimes, when he is sleeping, I just looked at him and marvelled that this wonderful guy loves me so very much. Then I would find myself smiling in the dark and thanking God again for giving him to me. That we found each other again and the love that had unknowingly touched us more than seven years ago, endured.” Maya said emotionally. “Hay, hayan naiiyak ako, tears of happiness. Ganito ba talaga ang mga preggy, mababaw ang luha!”

“Hahahaha, medyo, pero ako ngang hindi na preggy, naiiyak pa rin. Di bale na, tears of happiness and joy naman ito.” Cris said, laughing. “And cousin, Richard is also lucky to have you. I know you have this great capacity to love and he is getting the full force of it and also the children that you two, will have.”

Richard, who was standing in the doorway, reluctant to break into the cousins tender moment, moved forward then with the tray of drinks and some chocolate chip cookies. He heard some of the cousins conversation and felt overwhelmed with emotion and the love he feels for the one and only woman he loves. “Drinks, ladies. Sorry, natagalan, nabago pala ang mga lalagyan ng glasses and coffee cups ninyo, Cris?”

“Oh, yes, I forgot to tell you!  Sorry. Nag-rearrange kami ni Helen ng laman ng mga cabinet sa kitchen.” Cris said. “Sana tinanong mo ako para hindi ka nahilo sa kitchen namin.”

“I hate to interrupt you two, so hinanap ko na lang. No worries.” Richard replied as he handed Cris her drink, and her drink of choice to Maya, then he sat down to take a sip of his coffee. “And I overheard a portion of your conversation.” He said, then he put his cup down, he cupped Maya’s chin, “Cris is right, Maya sweetheart, I’m not just ‘also lucky to have you’, I’m very, very lucky to have you. You and our child are my life now. Life would have been bleak if the two of us didn’t end up together. I will just be existing and not living, really. Yes, we have not been formally blessed in front of God and our loved ones, but I’m committed to you already until forever.” Richard said emotionally, giving her a light kiss on the lips, Cris forgotten for a moment. “Everyday with you is a treasure and something really to thank God for, on bended knees. I also looked at your sleeping form sometimes and still, having a hard time believing that you are mine – to love and to hold forever.”

“Oh sweetheart, that was a very, very wonderful thing to say. Wala ka talagang kupas magpakilig. Hindi na nga ako makahinga sa kilig ah. I would be the same if hindi na tayo nagkatagpo after Mindoro.” Maya said sniffling. “I love you.” Then she hugged Richard, tight, kissing him lightly too.

“I love you too.” Richard said, gazing lovingly at her.

They got lost in their own world for a moment, then they suddenly remembered Cris, whom they have noticed was also sniffling. “I want Jeff with me too.” She said with a big smile, so very happy for Maya and Richard.

The three of them laughed. They chatted on while they were having their snacks. An hour later, Helen arrived. She told Cris that she had finished fast the errand she had asked her to do, but had hard time getting back to their place as the MRT broke down again and there were just chaos.

Soon after, Richard and Maya said goodbye to Cris as they have to prepare for their trip to Mindoro tomorrow. They will also visit the graves of Maya’s parents. This would be Maya’s second time to go to the memorial park where they were buried, since she came back to the Philippines, and Richard’s first. They cousins and Richard agreed that they will just see each other again that evening at the dinner Donya Esmeralda is hosting for the two families, something all of them have been doing since the Saturday night she hosted the dinner wherein Richard and Maya told the family about her pregnancy.

Two days after the pregnancy test in the bathroom, and  the most wonderful of news out of it, Richard and Maya went to the obstetrician-gynecologist that Cris recommended. Dr. Maricris Buneflor confirmed that, indeed, Maya is pregnant and based on the tests and the information she got from Maya, Maya was more than six weeks pregnant at that time. Her statement prompted Maya and Richard to share a secret look and a smile, both thinking and believing that the baby was conceived the first time they made love that New Year’s day! After the doctor, they hit the bookstore and bought a lot of pregnancy books. The two of them spent the evening relaxing and pouring over the books.

The following day, Donya Esmeralda noticed a different kind of connection and communication between her son and her daughter-in-law to be, as if the two of them are sharing a wonderful secret and with a look, the two of them would smile and suddenly get lost in their own world. She always see them naman only having eyes for each other during their own moments, but this time she also noticed Richard touching Maya’s tummy several times while they were having lunch, sometimes even unconsciously. She already noticed this during the dinner she hosted for key Emerald BGC people the day after, but had forgotten about it. Call it mother’s instinct, she teased them and asked kung magkakaapo na siya. Both Richard and Maya grinned and got flushed in their faces. They said ‘busted’ together. They told her of their wonderful news and she was ecstatic! Sa wakas, magkakaapo na rin sila ni Roberto! They did ask her to keep it to herself first as they would like to tell the families in one go, even if she, and Cris whom they have asked for the name of her ob-gyne, knew already.

Donya Esmeralda told the happy parents-to-be that she will take care of everything. She invited both families to a special dinner at the Lim family home in La Vista the following Saturday. The Franciscos were in complete attendance, thinking that Donya Esme wanted to discuss the preparations for Maya and Richard’s wedding. After the sumptuous feast they all enjoyed, Richard stood up, held Maya’s hand, then told both families that they have an announcement to make. Caressing Maya’s tummy, sharing a loving, radiant smile, they told everyone that there is a baby on the way for the two of them! Tita Lulu cried, again, in happiness, she said since madadagdagan na ang apo niya, and her first from Maya. Lino and Lindsay teased Maya and Richard na naunahan pa sila ng dalawa na magka-baby, parang marathon lang, and they all laughed. Don Roberto and Tito Mario patted each other in the back. Cris and Jeff took turns in hugging the couple and offering their congratulations. Cho jumped with joy, so happy that he will have a cousin na. Maya and Richard just looked on at their happy families and felt that they can’t wish for anything else at that moment, they were so full of happiness.

To mark the occasion and since their families are always meeting, one way or another for the wedding, and since they consider themselves one happy family already, Donya Esmeralda proposed that they do the dinner every Saturday, everyone’s schedule permitting and if the members of both families are in the country. Tita Lulu readily agreed, proposing that the two matriarchs taking turns in organizing the dinners. Since then, the family have been meeting for Saturday dinner religiously, except the other Saturday, when Cris gave birth to her and Jeff’s second child. Instead, all of them went to the hospital and waited until she gave birth to the baby girl, which was named Mary Margaret by Cris, wanting her nicknamed Maggie after the heroine in a book she loves reading and re-reading.

This Saturday, aside from the usual get together, the family is celebrating the newest addition to both families. While the dinner is at the Lim’s residence, Tita Lulu joined forces with Donya Esme in preparing the special dinner since it is for Maggie too, she said.

Like their previous dinners, this one was filled with merriment. The adults cooed on how cute little Maggie is, taking turns in holding her and dancing around with her. Donya Esmeralda and Don Roberto took turns in holding Maggie, longer than the others, telling Cris and Jeff that they need the practice para sa paparating nilang apo. Truth to tell, they doted on the little baby like, she, too, is their real apo. Maya and Richard looked at the older Lims indulgently. They were imagining the time that it is their little one that the elder Lims will be holding.

From the baby, the talk shifted to their wedding the following weekend while everyone was having dessert. Since everything was ironed out by Donya Esme and Tita Lulu, they just talked about the activities that the guests can do as part of the pre-wedding party. Maya and Richard suggested taking them to a picnic to the waterfalls that they have been to in December. He had received word from Catherine that the picnic area there is now finished. They assured the families that since they were just relaxing before the wedding, they can handle organizing it with Catherine and Aldrich. Maya and Richard are actually looking forward to going there again. They are planning to go back their on their own the day after they arrive back in the resort in Mindoro, sort if a trip down memory lane.

The Lim and the Franciscos get together ended up earlier than their usual since, aside from Maggie, Cho was also getting sleepy. The goodbye was a lengthy  one with everyone chorusing that they will see Maya and Richard in several days.

Maya and Richard arrived back at Maya’s condo, around 11PM that evening.

“Tired, sweetheart? How are you and our little angel?” Richard asked as he led Maya to the sofa. He sat and then pulled Maya gently into his lap. He loves doing that. That is his favorite form of them relaxing together.

“I’m okay, sweetheart. I’m just very, very happy.” Maya said, sighing contentedly as she settled into Richard’s lap. She wiggled a bit, then she intertwined her hands around Richard’s nape.

“Me too, sweetheart. Ilang araw na lang Mrs. Maya Lim ka na!” Richard said with a big lopsided smile on his face. “Finally. Tapos, in six months time, we will have our own bundle of joy! Our life couldn’t be happier than this!” Then caressing Maya’s tummy. “How are you there, little buddy. Warm and snug in Mommy’s tummy, huh. Be safe and sound little buddy, Mommy and I are jus here waiting for you, to hold you finally and love you very, very much.”

Maya looked indulgently at Richard. “Sweetheart, talaga. I’m sure, spoiled itong anak natin paglabas.”

“Not spoiled, sweetheart, just very, very well-loved.” Richard said, hugging Maya’s tummy and kissing her. They snuggled on the couch for quite sometime, then he whispered after a while, “Halika na, pahinga na tayo.” He said in a soft, loving voice.

Hearing that tone of voice and looking at his heated expression, Maya knew that rest is the last thing they will do when they hit their bedroom. With just a look, they understood each other. Hand in hand they went to their inner sanctuary. They loved each other, again, thoroughly throughout the rest of the night, their passion for each other not abating, but instead getting more and more intense as they got very familiar with each other’s body. Added to this is the fact that Maya’s breasts are more sensitive to Richard’s touch these days.

The following morning, more than three months after, they were at the helipad of Lim Corporation for their flight back to Mindoro. It felt like a long, long time, since that flight, but it was just three months ago! Amazing how many wonderful things had happened since then, Now they are going back to cement their journey to forever in the place that had so much memories for them already.

“Maya, Richard, good morning!” James Ventura greeted them with a big smile, followed by his co-pilot, Andy. “Congratulations again, and thank you very much for inviting Andy and I to your wedding. Sure na sure kaming nandoon!”

“Hi James, good morning! Good morning Andy!” Maya greeted the two with a big smile. “Oo naman, siyempre dapat nandoon talaga kayong dalawa, parte kayo ng development ng love story namin ni Ricky ah. Di ba, sweetheart?”

Richard smiled at Maya lovingly, then told the two pilot, “Maya and I are really happy that you two will be a part of our big day. Like Maya had said, you were a very important part of our journey as a couple and we would like to celebrate our wedding day with you and all our dear families and friends.”

“Thank you Sir Richard, Ma’am Maya. We are honored to be a part of it.” Andy said with a big smile, helping Richard with the bags.

“So shall we get going?” James asked after he seconded Andy’s statement.

They piled into the helicopter with Richard helping Maya solicitously. Unlike her first time riding a helicopter, Maya is not a bundle of nerves anymore. She is looking forward to the ride as it would mean going back to Mindoro which already holds so much wonderful memories and milestone for her and Richard.

“Sweetheart, comfy and okay?” Richard whispered while holding Maya’s hand when they were already airborne. He remembered that she was a bit nervous the first time they took the chopper. He smiled suddenly, remembering that time and what happened after, indeed, so many things had happened after that momentous flight!

“I am, sweetheart. Saka nandiyan ka naman.” Maya said, offering Richard a loving smile. He smiled back, then kissed her softly again, whispering, he said, “I love you my Mrs. Lim to be.”

“I love you too, Mr. Lim.” Maya said lovingly.

They held hands all throughout the flight. Both are very much looking forward to being back to their bungalow and all the places where their love took flight and started soaring several months ago, and of course, to the culmination of that love at the beautiful wedding they will have at the San Nicolas Church in six days time.

 

Note: Belated happy mother’s day! ❤

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Windblown – Chapter 21

In Motion

“Happy, sweetheart?” Richard whispered to Maya as they swayed to the music among the throng of well-dressed people enjoying the fabulous party that Emerald Hotels and Resorts has thrown for the opening of their newest hotel, a boutique hotel in the heart of the Bonifacio Global City, an area that has grown a lot the past several years. From a cluster of restaurants and ‘gimik’ places many years ago, the area is now dotted with tall buildings, upscale condominium complexes, several shopping streets featuring known international brands, and a lot of new restaurants and watering holes. Emerald Hotel has joined the boom in the area with a much needed hotel.

The Who’s Who of Manila’s society turned up at the opening, not only to check out the hotel’s beautiful architecture designed by Richard, furnitures by top Filipino designers, the top performers who were invited to grace the event, but to take a closer look at the lady that captured Richard Lim’s heart.

Several weeks before the opening of the hotel, and alongside the promotions that Maya and her group did, it spread like wildfire within the Manila social circle that the younger Lim, one of the country’s most eligible bachelors is engaged to be married to the operations manager of the new hotel the Lim family was about to open at BGC. Maya had stayed in the background during the promotions, letting the hotel’s PR manager to do all the information campaign for the hotel, however words still got out that she is engaged to Richard Lim. Some lifestyle writers had requested an interview from her and Richard, but they begged off due to their busy schedule leading to the hotel opening. Richard also asked Maya if it is okay with her that she was suddenly thrust into the limelight. Maya assured him that it is okay and the important thing is them, together and the opening of the hotel is her first priority at that point. She just concentrated on putting everything in order so that the opening of the hotel will go glitch-free and that their first batch of guests will have an experience they will not forget and will tell their friends and families about it.

“Yes, sweetheart, I’m very, very happy. Everything is going well. Seeing all of these, parang bawi na rin all the long hours we poured the past more than one and half month into getting Emerald ready to welcome its first guests!” Maya said as she caressed Richard’s nape with her hands, giving him a beautiful, loving smile. She and Richard had worked like crazy the past weeks. Added to this, they also met, during their free time, with their wedding coordinator. They decided that they will get married early April in the place where their love story started, in Mindoro. “Ikaw, sweetheart? I heard several oohs and ahhs from our guests seeing the lobby of Emerald. You really did a wonderful job. The nod to Philippine Spanish heritage with the design you did is brilliant.”

“Thank you, sweetheart. Of course, I’m very happy, not only because people loves the design I made, but because I’m sharing this special moment with you.” Richard said softly and lovingly. “Iba ito kaysa sa mga nauna kong projects kasi nandiyan ka na.”

“Sweetheart, talaga, grabe mo na akong pakiligin ha.” Maya replied, moving closer to Richard and putting her head on his chest as they dance to the beautiful music being sang by the country’s well-known stage actress and singer. “I love you, Ricky and this job is more meaningful too, because of you. I’m so glad that I am here with you. Sharing this and looking forward to our future together.”

“Me too, sweetheart, me too.” Richard murmured. It felt like they were alone in the middle of the dance floor. He felt so happy, to be like that with his beautiful fiancée. Soon, his wife in less than two months!

Everyone else paled in comparison to the vision that greeted him when he finally saw Maya going down the stairs that led to the ballroom, in her deep violet strapless evening gown that showed off her beautiful figure, with barely there make-up that highlighted her cheekbones, doe-shaped eyes and heart-shaped face, carrying an intricately designed minaudière evening bag. Most people in the ballroom took a second glance too at the vision before them, radiating poise, beauty and confidence.

Maya was a bit embarrassed to be the center of attention, without intending to! But she was late in joining the party as she had last minute things to oversee and had to deal with a minor crisis with their kitchen staff before she can join the party. Richard offered to wait for her, but she insisted that he went ahead so he can mingle with their guests. Maya also caught her breath when she saw Richard waiting for her at the base of the stairs, looking so handsome in the tuxedo he was wearing, with a smile only for her. He took hold of her hand and steered her towards the guests, first introducing her, with all the love in his voice as his very lovely fiancée, and also the new Emerald’s very capable operations manager. Donya Esmeralda did the same. Maya’s family was also invited to the opening of the hotel and the Franciscos came full force, minus Cris as she was nearing her due date.

The Lims and the Franciscos really bonded in the dinner that Donya Esmeralda organized for the two families at the Manila Polo Club. Now, Don Roberto and Maya’s Tito Mario are golf buddies, together with Don Roberto’s friend Probo. The ladies go to lunch once a week since then to discuss the wedding. The group also included Ryan’s wife, Ivy as she also offered to help in the wedding preparations. Maya and Ivy became fast friends after they met over dinner in early January. Maya and Richard couldn’t be happier with the turn of things. Since they moved together, they became closer and their lives just meshed without a glitch. Their nights were always filled with wonder and it was always like the first time they made love. Their desire for each other insatiable. As they get to know of their wants and desire and what sparks each other’s passion, they moved on to trying new things and experimenting, testing the limits of their passion in the privacy of their bedroom. Sometimes, when Maya remembers the things they do together, she blushes, like she was doing at that moment.

“Hmmm, why are you blushing, sweetheart?” Richard whispered naughtily. “Do you want to get away from here? We can try the penthouse room of the hotel.” He teased.

“Ricky, ikaw talaga. As if! Gusto mo ba na maging topic tayo ng mga staff natin, hahahaha.” Maya blushed more. “At paano mo naman nahulaan na iyon ang iniisip ko.”

“Hmmm, kasi iyon din ang iniisip ko.” Richard retorted. “Unfortunately, we can’t escape yet. Kailangan pa nating mag-mingle. Di bale, sweetheart, I’ll take really good care of you when we get home.” He added with a mischievous smile.

“Really, sweetheart.” Maya smiled lovingly at Richard as they continued swaying to new music that followed the first one they danced to.

“Really, really, really.” Richard said, then stole a quick kiss on Maya’s lips. “Your wish is my command.”

“Hmmmm, I’m looking forward to all the possibilities that statement carries.” Maya teased back.

Maya and Richard smiled at each other, still lost in their world. However, they were jolted out of it when someone tapped Richard’s shoulder. Maya and Richard looked and they saw Linda Borromeo, holding a wineglass. The model was swaying a little bit as she looked at Richard.

“So, may I dance with my Ricky. How about a twirl around the dance floor, honey!” Linda asked in a challenging way. It was also obvious to Maya and Richard that she already had too much to drink. Like when they were formally introduced earlier, Linda ignored Maya. But Richard will have none of it.

“Oh, hi Linda! Actually, Maya and I are about to sit this one out. We do need to mingle again. I just want an opportunity to dance with my lovely wife-to-be before we mingle again. After all, this is our first outing in society and I want it to be a wonderful and memorable one. May I just escort to your seat. Would you like a cup of coffee?”  Richard offered politely. Then he looked at Maya, “Sweetheart, why don’t you go to Mama and her friends, I will just take Linda to where her friends are.”

Maya nodded at Richard. “Okay, sweetheart. I will go to Mama na, also check on the staff. I’ll see you later. Bye Linda.” She then tiptoed and gave Richard a peck on the cheek.

Linda was about to react negatively, seeing red. Richard, seeing this, acted fast, held Linda by her elbow firmly and guided her towards the direction of her friends’ table. “Linda, please don’t make a scene. It will not do you any good. Besides, we just dated. I thought it was clear to you that it was just a casual thing.” Richard whispered as they walked across the ballroom.

“But Ricky, I love you. What does she has that I don’t?  Mas maganda ako kaysa sa kanya.” Linda whined, the effects of the alcohol making her say things that she wouldn’t normally say to Richard.

“I’m really sorry, Linda. Someday, you will find the right guy for you. I’m not that. My heart belongs to Maya. It has always been.” Richard said, looking at Maya across the room. Their eyes met and shared a loving smile. “She is my world now.” He added softly. “She is the most beautiful girl in the world, inside out.”

What Richard was saying finally penetrated Linda’s alcohol-laden brain. Seeing the palpable love between Richard and Maya, she sighed heavily. “Okay, okay, I get it.” She then stormed towards her friends.

Richard sighed, and rubbed his neck. He never thought that Linda would be like this until now. He thought they understood each other when they were ‘dating’. He ran into her the week before at the coffee shop near his building. She invited him for coffee. Since they haven’t seen each other since December, Richard agreed. He also wanted to tell her that he is engaged to be married, even if he is sure that she had already heard about it. Linda didn’t react much when he was chatting with her. She even offered her congratulations. She also asked Richard about Maya. Richard told her how they met again. They parted as friends, so he had thought!

He had told Maya about Linda before that meeting. He knew that Linda will be one of the invited guests to the opening of the hotel. He didn’t want to conceal anything from her. Not that his ‘dates’ with Linda went beyond having dinner. At that point in his life, he had given up meaningless sex. For Richard, there was always something missing after those encounters, so he had stopped, until Maya came back to his life and made it very meaningful in every sense of the word. Maya assured him again that whatever happened before them, was just that – a part of the past! And it does not affect her and what they have.

“Is everything okay, Ricky?” Maya asked gently when he reached her side. “Okay lang ba si Linda?”

“Yes, she is fine. I think marami lang siyang nainom.” Richard assured her. “I will tell you about it when we get home.”

“Okay!” Maya said, then someone greeted them, a friend of Tita Lulu, and they ended up chatting with her.

Several hours later, the party winded down. Everyone was happy. Maya checked on the staff and the night shift before heading home with Richard for the night. Home was still Maya’s condo, as they have agreed several weeks before. While Maya insisted that Richard’s place is okay and they didn’t need to redo it, Richard pushed through with some changes, a surprise for Maya. He  included a space for her in his office. He enlarged the library and the entertainment rooms for Maya’s books and DVD collection and he had one of the rooms, converted into a nursery!

“Home, sweet home sweetheart, finally!” Maya said  as she opened the hall lights, still in high spirits despite the lateness of the hours, due to the success of the opening of Emeralds BGC. Everything went smoothly until the last guests have left at around 1AM.

“Yes, finally! Are you tired, sweetheart? Do you want a nightcap? Wine?” Richard offered.

“Maybe, juice na lang sweetheart. I can’t take the smell and taste of wine recently. Kanina nga I tried to take a sip, pero parang my stomach was rejecting it so I stopped.” Maya said.

“Okay, juice it is!” Richard went to the kitchen and poured a glass of mango juice for Maya and opened a can of SanMig light for himself. He also got something else for Maya, a big bouquet of sunflowers. He ordered it earlier after Maya had left for Emerald.  ahead of him. He just followed with their clothes for the party and changed at the hotel. He walked back to the living room with a big smile. “Happy Valentine’s Day, sweetheart!” He handed her the juice and the flowers.

“Happy Valentine’s Day din, sweetheart! ” Maya said with a big, loving smile to Richard. She stood up and gave him a kiss. “Oo nga pala, 14 na!”

“Our first!” Richard said. “I love you very much, Maya.”

“Yes, sweetheart, our first among the many, many, many Valentine, we will celebrate.” Maya lovingly said. “And I love you very much too. Thank you for these lovely flowers.”

Maya put down her drinks, then went to Richard and sat on his lap, put her arms around his neck, then she lowered her lips to him, giving him a searing kiss. “Thank for being the most wonderful fiance.”

Richard smiled at Maya. Her kiss stoked up his desire for her. He traced the seams of her lips with his thumb. Then his thumb was replaced by his lips, giving Maya a smouldering kiss to match the one she gave him a minute ago. “Shall we go to bed, sweetheart.’ He murmured huskily, several long seconds after. “Remember, your wish is my command, sweetheart.” He added teasingly as he stood up, with Maya in his arms.

Maya interlaced her hands on Richard’s nape, then when he was putting her down gently on the bed, she whispered to Richard what her wishes are for that evening. Richard grinned. “Sure you are not tipsy, sweetheart,” he teased.

“Nope.” Maya said, looking heatedly at her husband-to-be. Then she sat up and started removing his clothes.

Richard spent the rest of the evening, fulfilling Maya’s wishes. They slept as dawn was breaking, sated and naked in each other’s arms.  Maya sleepily thanked her fiance before succumbing to much-needed sleep in his arms. Richard kissed her one more time before tightening his arms around her and putting the blanket over their nakedness.

The sound of a ringing mobile phone woke up Richard. He grabbed the phone and checked the caller. “Yes, Mama. Napatawag ka po.” He also looked at the clock and realized that it was already 11 o’clock in the morning.

“Ricky, Happy Valentine’s Day sa inyo ni Maya! Sorry did I wake you up, son?” Donya Esmeralda belatedly asked, realizing that Richard sounded sleepy pa.

“Yes, Mama, pero it’s okay po. Tanghali na pala.” Richard said. “Happy Valentine’s Day din po sa inyo ni Papa.”

“Oh! Anyway, napatawag ako kasi baka gusto niyo ni Maya na dito mag-dinner bukas.” Donya Esmeralda said. “I would like to prepare a small salo-salo for key hotel officials to thank them for their hard work and for the success of our opening! Maya said we are fully booked this weekend. Good move ang suggestion niya na on the eve of Valentine tayo mag-open instead of the day itself! Hit din ang promo that she suggested as part of our opening.”

“Sure, Mama. I’m sure it will be okay. Wala naman po kaming lakad ni Maya. I will tell her paggising niya. Medyo napagod po siguro, she is still sleeping.” Richard said. His parents and Maya’s family know that they are living together. They have told them in the family dinner they had at the Polo Club. Both families assured them that it is okay with them, and that their lives are theirs to live. Besides, malapit na rin naman silang ikasal.

“Great, son! I will expect you and Maya na ha.”  Donya Esmeralda said goodbye after that.

Richard looked at his sleeping fiancée. He smiled, full of love for her. Since it is Valentine, he decided to treat her to a breakfast, or rather, brunch in bed. He grabbed some clothes then went to the kitchen. He spent half an hour making champorado for Maya. Good thing the packaged one they discovered is as good as the one you can make from scratch. As for tuyo, he found a bottled tuyo in the fridge from a well-known tapa restaurant. Maya likes it very much. He returned to the bedroom carrying his offering. Richard found Maya slowly moving from the bed.

“Good morning, sweetheart. Rise and shine. I have breakfast for you.” Richard said cheerfully. He sat on the bed.

“Ricky, good morning.” Maya said, feeling very, very lethargic.

“Sweetheart, are you okay?” Richard asked, noticing that Maya sounded very tired and sluggish.

“Not sure, sweetheart. Parang ang sama ng pakiramdam ko. Baka magkaka-flu ako. Lahat yata ng pagod natin sa opening ng Emerald ngayon ko nararamdaman.” Maya replied, leaning against the headboard.

“Oh, you better eat then, sweetheart, para may lakas ka and makainom ka ng medicine.” Richard suggested. “Heto I made coffee for you, then champorado and tuyo.” He put the tray on Maya’s lap.

The smell of freshly brewed coffee assailed Maya’s senses and her stomach started to feel queasy. She looked at the tuyo and champorado, and she can’t help it anymore, she ran to the bathroom. Her stomach heaved but nothing came out. Richard followed her and he massaged her back as she heaved over the sink. “Sweetheart, are you okay? Do you want me to bring you to the doctor?”

“I don’t think I need one, sweetheart. Baka flu lang ito or may nakain ako na hindi nag-agree sa tummy ko. I think I will just lie down for a while.” Maya said, holding on to Richard’s arm as they moved back to the bed. “Can you get me tea and crackers, please. I think my stomach can take that. Kapag hindi na lang bumuti ang pakiramdam ko saka ako iinom ng gamot.”

“Okay, pero kapag masama pa rin, I will bring you to the hospital ha. Baka kasi may nakain ka kagabi sa party na hindi nag-agree sa tummy mo.” Richard said.

“Baka nga. Promise, I will tell you kapag mas sumama pa ang pakiramdam ko.” Maya said.

Richard went back to the kitchen and made the tea for Maya. He also got some crackers from the cabinet. While he was on the way back to the bedroom, he suddenly stopped, a thought entered his head. “Hindi kaya……?” His heart beat faster. He returned to the bedroom.

“Sweetheart, hindi kaya, magkaka-baby na tayo?” He blurted to Maya as soon as he had given her the tea and the crackers, and she started eating. Hindi maalis sa isip niya. “Come to think of it, it has been a while since you last had a period.”

Maya was about to bite on the crackers when her hand stilled, upon hearing Richard’s question. “Sweetheart….” Then she recalled the last time she had a period. It has been….. “Sweetheart, it has been since before Christmas! But sometimes I’m irregular so I didn’t notice! Tapos na-busy pa tayo sa opening ng hotel. I didn’t realize that….Do you think…..?”

Richard grinned. “Sweetheart, there is only one way to find out. Diyan ka lang, I’ll be back very quickly.” Richard hastily kissed Maya, and in his house clothes, grabbed his house key and was out of the condo in a flash.

Several minutes after, Richard returned carrying a small paper bag which has the logo of a big drugstore chain. “Here, sweetheart, we can check.”

Maya opened the back and saw a pregnancy test kit. She looked at Richard. Suddenly she felt nervous and excited too. She got  up. “Sandali lang, Ricky. I will set it up. Gusto ko dalawa tayong titingin.”

“Okay, sweetheart.” Richard said, getting excited as well.

Several minutes after, Maya called Richard to the bathroom. She dropped her urine sample in the slot indicated in the test kit. They didn’t wait long, two purple lines started forming in the slot in the plastic kit.

“Yes!!!!” Richard exclaimed, hugging Maya very tight. His joy at the news, unequalled.

“Sweetheart, magkaka-baby na tayo!!!” Maya said, overcame by emotions, and  with tears of happiness flowing. She hugged Richard tight. Richard twirled her around while the two of them laughed joyfully.

“Sweetheart, magiging mommy ka na at magiging daddy na ako!!!” Richard said, wonder in his voice. Then he carried back Maya to the bedroom.

Richard laid down beside Maya, then reverently touched her tummy. “Hey there, little buddy.”

Maya laughed. She put her hand on top of Richard’s. “Sweetheart., I’m so happy. I love you very much.”

“Me too, sweetheart. I have no words for what I feel at the moment. I love you very much too and ang magiging anak natin.”  Richard said, his voice choking a bit with the overwhelming emotions he was feeling at the moment.

He kissed Maya’s tummy. Then with their hands on her tummy, they shared a sweet kiss. Both of them agreed that their first Valentine is the most memorable ever, with a new life, the product of their love, growing inside Maya.

 

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Windblown – Chapter 20

Nesting

Welcome to my place!” Richard said as he and Maya entered the penthouse of an upscale condominium complex two streets away from Maya’s place. “Come, my sweetheart, make yourself comfortable.”

“Wow, this is a certainly huge place for one person, sweetheart! It’s also very beautiful!” Maya looked around as she followed Richard towards the living room of his spacious place which has two levels. She likes the hardwood floors used for the flooring instead of marble or tiles, and the floor-to-ceiling windows of the place, taking advantage of the light and highlighting the view. Hardwood was also used for the stairs that lead to the open second level of the beautiful place.”Did you design the interior of this condo?”

“Yes, I did. I got this unit bare. I requested the developer to leave the designs of the unit itself to me. I want to make it airy and laidback, for the place to flow. You know, comfort before useless aesthetics. I like to be able to move around comfortably since I also use this place as an office. I like thinking of new designs here than the office in Eastwood.” Richard explained as he guided Maya towards the sofa and sitting beside her, hugging her to his side.

“When I bought and designed this place, I also thought that it would be a suitable place to start a family, initially at least. Though at that time naman, wala pa akong planong magpakasal. I was not even in a serious relationship.” Richard added with a big loving smile for Maya.

“Really, sweetheart! No serious relationship!” Maya said lovingly.

“Nope, kasi I was pining for this beautiful princess. Mabuti na lang she came back and made my life full of colors.” Richard looked at Maya like she is the most beautiful girl in the world. At times, there is still a part of him that find it hard to believe that they are together now and that it had happened.

“Sweetheart naman talaga. Ikakasal na lang tayo para ka pa ring nanliligaw sa akin sa sobrang sweetness and pa-kilig.” Maya said, very thrilled.

“Of course, sweetheart! Hindi naman natatapos ang lahat sa proposal and sa marriage. Dapat araw-araw pa rin ang courtship and until our last breaths. That’s part of me, loving you, very, very much!” He cupped Maya’s face, then gave her a sweet kiss.

“Thank you, my sweetheart. I’m the the luckiest girl talaga. I love you very much.” Maya replied, giving Richard tiny kisses. “So, how about giving me a tour?”

“Sure, sweetheart.” Richard stood up and offered his hand to Maya. He showed her around the first level of the place first, which aside from the living room, has the dining room, kitchen, laundry area, an entertainment room, and a medium size room which Richard said is for a kasambahay. He made it bigger than the usual maid’s room by gutting out a storage room and combining it with the builders’ original very small maid’s room. The kitchen is a cook’s dream. However, Richard told Maya

Richard guided Maya to the second level of the house. The stairs led to a family room which has floor-to-ceiling windows too, then beyond it are two guest bedrooms. At the other side of the family room is Richard’s small gym, his study, then at the end is his bedroom. It is the best and the biggest room in the house, decorated in understated elegance.

“So, what do you think of the place, sweetheart?” Richard asked Maya as he led her to the sitting room of his bedroom. This part of the room led to a small balcony which Maya can see has a small lanai.

“I love your place, sweetheart, especially the way you have designed it. You are very talented. The place also has this positive feeling in it. I don’t know, hard to explain but I feel the positive aura of the place. Maybe, because I can feel the talent you have put in order to make this place a home. It is certainly big enough, not just for a family, but a big family!”

“Do you think you can live here? We can just also live in your place. I like it din and we have wonderful memories in that place already.” Richard told Maya, wanting to leave the decision to her as she has just started nesting, so to speak, after living abroad for years. He can adjust, for her. Besides, they need a house when their family expands. He wants kids. He is looking forward to the coming of his and Maya’s adorable angels.

“Thank you for saying that Ricky. I really appreciate your willingness to move to my small unit. But I know how you love this place too. It is evident in the way you made it a home. We can also make a home here. Kahit saan naman we can do that basta magkasama tayo. Us and the children we will have.” Maya said, putting her hand on top of Richard’s. “We can live here. I love the place already.”

“I’m glad, sweetheart. I look forward to sharing this place with you. In the meantime, let’s live in yours while you redecorate it the way you want to be.” Richard suggested. “Make this place your home too.”

“Oh, I don’t think it would need changes much. But let’s just live here after we got married.” Maya smiled sweetly at Richard. She, too, is looking forward to sharing this place wih Richard. She looks forward too, to children’s laughter that will fill the place, hers and Ricky’s beautiful kids.

“I can already see you here, with the kids we will have.” Richard said dreamily. “Siguro, maganda if we will have four kids, or six like what we have discussed before.”

“Four to six kids! Kaya ba natin iyan, sweetheart.” Maya said smiling, thinking already of three cute boys and three beautiful girls who will make her and Ricky crazy, but whom they will surely love to pieces.

“Why not. Mas marami, maganda. Malay mo, abutin pa talaga ng six ang kids natin. Why not?” Richard said, smiling.

“Six talaga, sweetheart!” Maya exclaimed, but not oppose to the idea. She would like a big family too. She got lucky with having cousins, but nevertheless, there are times that it is difficult to be an only child, especially of you have lost your parents at a very young age.

“Yes, baka nga we have started na on number one.” Richard said, touching Maya’s tummy. “We have not use any form of protection. How do you feel about that, sweetheart. Okay with you if we start having a family promptly.”

Maya blushed, but is liking the idea of a little Richard or a little Maya already in her tummy. “Of course, sweetheart, I’m okay with it. Product of our love iyon. Pero, baka naman wala pa.” Maya added, blushing.

“Hmmmm, then we have to be sure that there will be soon.” Richard grinned naughtily. He stood up, then put his left arm on Maya’s ankles and the other arm on her back, then lifted her towards his big bed. “I also imagine you here.” He said in a bedroom voice that sent tingles to Maya’s senses.

“Ricky….” Maya said breathlessly, still catching her breath, after Richard has put her down slowly, on his big bed. She interwined her hands on his nape, then lowered his head to hers, and gave him a searing kiss.

“Maya….” Richard returned the kiss heatedly.

The kiss turned into several kisses, with the two of them, touching each other urgently, heatedly, until they became one and managed to tempered down the ever burning fire between each other.

Richard kissed the top of Maya’s hand as he cradled her in his arms as they rest in the afterglow. He also touched her stomach reverently. Maya smiled at him. “So, did it live up to your imagination.” Maya teased Richard.

“More than, sweetheart. But I need a validation, you know, para sigurado.” Richard said naughtilly as he started caressing the underside of Maya’s right breast.

Maya gasped at the feeling. “Again, sweetheart?” She asked, smiling, but with an equally mischievous expression on her face.

Richard simply nodded. His eyes full of passion. But when he was about to move, Maya gently extricated herself from Richard’s embrace and with her hand on his broad chest, she motioned him to keep still. She then moved on top of Richard and started pampering him, first with tiny, loving kisses from his face to every part of his beautiful body, then driving him crazy with her maddening touch, until he can’t take it anymore. “Sweetheart…..” Richard said breathlessly. Maya then moved again, and drove the two of them to fulfillment.

“I love you very much, Maya. You are my life now.” Richard said after he had managed to catch his breath from Maya’s wonderful and unexpected treat to him. This is the first time she had done this. “Thank you, and I will not get tired of saying that, for making me so very happy. And I just want you to know I have never brought anyone here, before. It never felt right. Kaya pala, ikaw lang kasi ang para rito.”

“Oh, you made me very happy, too. You continue to make me happy. Ricky. Sobra-sobra.” Maya said lovingly, hugging Richard tight as her head rests on his chest, appreciating him telling her about it, getting his meaning and she felt very happy to know. Yes, intellectually, she knew that Richard could have not lived like a monk the past seven years. But she was really glad to know that no one has shared that bed with him, except her. “I love you very too, Ricky.”

Richard and Maya stayed like that for a while, content. They only moved when it got a bit late. Maya helped Richard packed his stuffs. They returned to Maya’s place around midnight, then promptly fell asleep in each other’s arms.

The following morning, Maya woke Richard with a breakfast in bed, and all the things he needed for work, laid down at the divan near the bathroom. He told her he will take care of the dishes since she cooked. He tidied up the kitchen while Maya was taking a bath.

“Thank you for the breakfast, and for preparing my things, sweetheart.” Richard told Maya, cupping her face when she was about to open the door of condo, then giving her a ‘thank you’ kiss that lasted several long seconds.

“You’re welcome, sweetheart.” Maya is happy to be taking care of Ricky. “Halika na, pasok na tayo.”

Richard and Maya rode down to the parking basement where Richard parked his car the night before. Maya has still a week to go to the office in Eastwood before she moves to her office in the new hotel in BGC. More than an hour of traveling, which the two of them spent chatting about their plans for the evening and the dinner with the families, they arrived at the offices of Lim Corporation. The employees are still not used to Richard Lim lovey-dovey with someone, as some of them said to their colleagues, but they find it so romantic. Richard deposited Maya at the entrance of Emerald’s, as he needed to see his father at the executive offices that morning.

“I’ll see you for lunch, sweetheart.” Richard kissed Maya on the lips, lightly. “Puntahan na lang kita sa conference room.”

“Okay, sweetheart. Have a great morning. Hello to Papa.” Maya said, then waved at Ricky. She waited until he boarded the elevator before going in. When she reached the conference room where they brainstormed the day before, she saw that there is only on person there, and its Diana. Maya hesitated a bit, but she realized that it is her chance to talk to Diana too. She sensed her coolness the day before.

“Good morning, Ms. Diana.” Maya greeted Diana cheerfully.

Diana looked at her with a raised eyebrow, then returned her greetings politely. “Good morning Ms. Dela Rosa.” Then she went back to the opened laptop before her.

“Ms. Diana,” Maya started.

Diana looked up inquiringly. “Yes, Ms. Dela Rosa.”

“May I talk to you about something.” Maya asked, then proceeded to do so when Diana nodded motioning for her to continue.

Maya opted to be straight with Diana as well. It was one of the things she learned while working and dealing with people of different nationalities in Macau, especially her colleagues and bosses who came from Australia, the States and some parts of Europe. While like with Ina, she knows that she does not need to explain, but she would like to. She wants to concentrate on her and Richard’s happiness and not on things like this, especially if can be smoothed out.

“I know that the fact that seeing Ricky and I together was a surprise to everyone, especially to you and Ms. Ina since it didn’t  come up in my interview with you. Ricky also told me that he didn’t mention to you and Ina that he knows me when you gave him the resumes of the candidates. Yes, I have known Richard Lim from seven years ago, but at the time I was applying for a job here, he was not my boyfriend and I didn’t realize that his family owns the company. My headhunter took care of the job hunting for me. I didn’t tell him either since I wanted to be hired on my own merit. He, on the other hand, wanted to give you and Ina a free hand in deciding who is the best person for the job.” Maya said, then she told Diana the rest of wht she had told Ina too. Looking at Diana, she can see her expression changed.

“Maya, thank you very much for telling me. I appreciate it.” Diana said more warmly, then contritely, “I’m so sorry for reacting the way I reacted. On a level, I knew I was being unfair to you. You did get hired because of your excellent qualifications. I guess, my only excuse, or defense, is that I have been burned before by someone I hired who I thought was on the level with me.   Like you, I really liked her. But because of what she did just so she got hired, and the bad judgement I thought I did, she cost me my job. Since then, I had a strong dislike of people who are not honest with me.”

“Thank rin for telling me, Ms. Diana. I understand.” Maya said, smiling at Diana. She is glad to have cleared the air with Diana too.

“Oh, please call me Diana.” Diana said, smiling now. “And I heard congratulations are in order.”

“Thank you Diana. Yes, Ricky and I are getting married soon.” Maya said happily.

“Hmmm, why do I sense that there is a beautiful love story behind that smile.” Diana teased Maya. She did like Maya a lot the first time she saw her.

Both of them laughed, with Maya promising that maybe, one day, she will tell her about it. Soon after Donya Esmeralda, Ina and the other managers arrived and the hours of the morning flew by. As he had promised, Richard picked her up for lunch. They were on their way to the elevator going up when someone called Richard.

“Brod, aakyat ka na ba? Sabay na tayong mag-lunch.” Ryan Molina asked Richard, then he noticed the beautiful girl beside him, his hand interlaced with hers. “Oh, sorry, I didn’t notice you right away, you must be Maya. I’m Ryan Molina….”

Richard continued the introduction. “Maya, sweetheart, this big lug, is Ryan Molina, our corporate legal counsel and a good friend of mine. Fraternity brothers din kami nung college and ninong ako ng anak niyang si Raymond. Brod, the beautiful lady is my fiancee, Maya dela Rosa, also Emerald’s new operations manager for our hotel in BGC.”

“The last one I know of, Brod, but not as your fiancee, until the office grapevine buzzed with it yesterday. Lakas ha.” Ryan said smiling, teasing Richard. “Now I understand, why. I’m very please to meet you Maya.”

“Hi Ryan, please to meet you too. Ikaw iyong kasama ni Ricky sa Macau, di ba? And a woman.” Maya realized why the lawyer looks familiar.

Now, it was Ryan’s turned to be surprised. “You saw us in Macau? I was with Richard nga there and also my wife Ivy sometime last year. Hmmm, feeling ko may mahaba-habang story diyan sa Macau na iyan. I now remember, my brod here, looking sad and pensive while we were there.”

“Hahaha, ikaw talaga Brod.” Richard laughed. “Halika, sumama ka na nga sa aming mag-lunch ni Maya and we will tell you all about Macau and our love story.” He gazed at Maya and the two of them shared a loving smile, remembering Macau.

Ryan looked at them. “Hmmm, baka naman mainggit lang ako sa sobrang sweetness niyong dalawa.” He teased, “Maya, pasensya ka na sa amin ng brod ko. Ganyan lang kaming magkulitan. If you don’t mind, sama na lang ako sa inyo ni Richard sa lunch, I want to hear the whole thing.”

“Of course, Ryan. Please do join us for lunch.” Maya said graciously, liking Richard’s jolly friend immediately.

The three of them went to the company restaurant in the top floor of the building. The place offers a wonderful view. At that time of the day the place was a bit full. Richard led Maya to a corner table, and Ryan followed them. It took them a while to get there as a lot hailed Richard and he introduced Maya to other company executives.

While they were eating lunch, Richard and Maya alternately told Ryan of their love story. Ryan listened with rapt attention. Then when they were finished, he said, “Hayun, kaya naman pala parang feeling ko pinagsukluban ng langit at lupa si Brod sa Macau. Now I also understand Brod, kung bakit ilang dates lang, goodbye na ang mga date mo. Pero don’t worry Maya, ikaw lang ang nag-iisa rito kay Brod. Sa iyo lang siya nagkaganyan.” Ryan assured Maya, smiling. “Pero Brod, Maya, grabe ang love story niyong dalawa, parang iyong paboritong teleserye lang ni Ivy. Masayang-masaya ako para sa inyong dalawa.”

Maya gave Ryan a big smile. “I know. Otherwise, hindi ko siya sasagutin.” She said in jest, then looked at Richard lovingly. “Thank you, Ryan.”

“Sweetheart, thank you. Love you.” Richard smiled atMaya and then addressed Ryan. “Tama iyan, Brod. By the way, talagang pupuntahan kita later this afternoon, to ask if you and Ivy would like to have dinner with Maya and I on Friday. Gusto ko ngang magkakilala kayo formally.”

“Ivy will like that, Richard, Maya. I will tell her. For sure, tuwang-tuwa iyon that you are getting married na and of course, she would like to meet the girl who finally captured your heart.” Ryan said.

“Great, Brod! Then one more thing, will you be my best man?” Richard asked.

“Of course, Brod. Magtatampo naman ako ng todo-todo niyan kung hindi ako ang best man mo, hahahaha.”

“Thank you, Brod.”

The three of them chatted about the wedding during the rest of the meal. Richard and Maya parted with Ryan at the elevator again. He took Maya back to the conference room, agreeing to meet at the lobby after Maya finishes for the day.

Richard and Maya managed to get home at half past seven o’clock that evening.

“Sa wakas, solo na naman kita.” Richard grinned as he reeled Maya towards him, on his lap. “Dalawang beses ng interrupted ang lunch natin ah.” He remarked.

“Ikaw talaga, Mr. Lim. solo mo naman ako. Ikaw at tanging ikaw lang.” Maya said lovingly as she wiggled a bit and settled comfortably into Richard’s lap. “What would you like to eat? I’ll make dinner.”

“Huwag na sweetheart, alam kong pagod ka na rin. Let’s order dinner na lang. When we move to the new house, let’s ask Mama if she can recommend a good kasambahay to us para hindi ka mapagod ng husto.” Richard said. “For now, it is nice to be like this, just the two of us. What do you think?”

“Yes, I agree, sweetheart. Gusto ko the two of us muna, like this.” Maya said. “I’ll order na. Pizza, pasta and salad, okay with you?”

Richard nodded. When Maya put the phone down after ordering. “Now I know the best way to pass the time while waiting for our order.” He then whispered something to Maya which made Maya blushed and raised an eyebrow. “Is that possible, sweetheart, remember normally, 30 to 45 minutes lang ang tagal bago dumating ang delivery.”

“Wanna bet, my love.” Richard grinned naughtily. “If I lose, I will give you the best massage ever. If I win, you have to grant a wish of mine.”

“Hmmmm….” Maya murmured, pretending to think deeply, then she, too, grinned. “Call.”

Richard grinned, then carried Maya to their bedroom to do what he whispered lovingly to her. Thirty minutes later, with Maya cradled in his arms, he said, “I won, sweetheart. Then you have to grant my wish.”

“Okay, what is it?” Maya said as she caressed Richard’s arm, still basking in the afterglow. She felt so relaxed and sated at that moment.

“I’ll think about it.” Richard grinned, and he was about to give Maya another searing kiss on the lips when the in house phone rang. “Oh, that’s our food. Stay in bed, I will get it.” Richard said as he looked for the shirt and pants, he and Maya hastily discarded in their hurry earlier.

Richard and Maya ended up eating their dinner on the bed. It lasted longer than usual as they fed each other slowly, teasingly, and lovingly.

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Windblown – Chapter 18

Blessings

“Sweetheart naman, good night na, really, really!” Maya whispered lovingly, giving in to another smouldering kiss from Richard that left her catching her breath. They have been trying to say good night for the past several minutes. But both of them were very reluctant to part for the night as it will be the first night since they have been to Mindoro that they will be sleeping in different places, and the first night they will be sleeping on different beds.

“Okay, okay, I’m going. I’ll you see tomorrow for our dinner with my parents.” Richard stole another kiss, then grinned naughtily. “I need something to tide me over, until tomorrow.”

“Sweetheart, ikaw talaga. Humirit pa!“ Maya pinched Richard’s cheek lovingly. “I’ll see you tomorrow. Sweet dreams.”

Richard gave in and with a wave of his hand, left Maya’s condominium unit to go back to his own. He has not been home for a week now. He was reluctant to go home as he just wanted to stay in Maya’s place. He wanted to be with Maya, always. Soon, it will happen, he sighed. He just needed to be patient pa. Three months na lang, and he and Maya can be together under one roof for the rest of their lives.

Maya was already missing Richard too, even before the door fully closed on his departing figure. She is used to being with him everyday, especially when she wakes up cuddled up in his arms.  For sure, it would be difficult to sleep without him by her side this evening. She sat on the sofa, and sighed, remembering their wonderful vacation. It was just a week, and so many wonderful things have happened. She looked at her beautiful ring and smiled. She remembered Richard’s unforgettable proposal dreamily and their night together after that. She blushed a bit, remembering them coming together as one, and the fireworks they created in the privacy of the bungalow as they welcome the new year.

If Maya will be asked what would have been the most perfect new year’s day celebration for her, she would say that it was the one she spent with Richard two days before. She and Richard just lazed around the bungalow, ate brunch, took a nap after, made love when they woke up as they couldn’t get enough of each other and this overwhelming passion for each other, then when the sun was not so hot, they spent the rest of the day in the beach, swimming and lazing around in each other’s arms as they watched the sun set, then later, the stars. After dinner, they retired early, not to sleep but to be with each other again, finding out more what pleasures the other. They slept in each other’s arms, naked and sated.

The following day, the last day of their vacation, Maya told Richard she had a special treat for husband-to-be. She told him they will stay somewhere for the night. She also packed their bags so that they don’t have to do it the following day. Maya took Richard to her family’s ancestral home which she had asked Mang Larry to open for their stay. She wanted to give Richard a special treat too after the many wonderful treats he had prepared for her. She wanted to pamper her fiance too.

Richard loved the architecture of the Dela Paz’s house. When Maya mentioned that it needed to be restored, Richard told her he has a friend from university who is into restoration work, especially ancestral homes. They spent the rest of the day exploring more of San Nicolas. It was capped with a dinner at the San Nicolas Golf and Country Club where they met of all people, Rebecca Bermudez, and her family! The elegant older lady was very happy to know, got very teary-eyed in fact, when she found out that Richard and Maya are together and that their incredible love story started the night of the pageant she organized seven years ago.

Richard and Maya spent the night in Maya’s old room in the ancestral home which Manang Vilma and Sabel cleaned to perfection. Maya felt very happy to be sharing that special place with Richard that night.

The following day, it was time to go back to Manila. James and Andy arrived at ten o’clock that morning to pick them up. However, they had to wait 30 minutes more before Maya and Richard made it to the helipad, running. James, seeing Maya’s ring, offered his congratulations. He told them, now he knows what he was carrying several days ago and why! Andy also offered his congratulations. James even teased them that they were forgiven for being late for the pick up.

Maya and Richard thought it was a good thing they packed their bags before heading to San Nicolas, otherwise, they would be very much late from the agreed pick up time, as they overslept. They didn’t exactly go to sleep promptly when they retired to Maya’s antique bed. They made love several times throughout the night, their passion for each other getting more intense.

When Richard saw Maya looking longingly at the place they were leaving behind, when the chopper was taking off, he promised her that they will be back there as soon as possible. Mindoro has became the most special place for both of them. It holds most of their milestones and moments as a couple.

James and Andy let them off again at Lim Corporation’s helipad. Instead of going off on their separate ways when they arrived back in Makati, they went straight to the Francisco’s residence. Maya called her Tita Lulu when they were driving back to Makati from Eastwood and found out that both her and her Tito Mario are home, In fact, the whole family was about to have lunch, and that included her Ate Cris, Kuya Jeff, Cho, Lino and Lindsay! Lulu invited them to join if they are not too tired from the trip. Maya took that as an opportunity to tell everyone hers and Richard’s good news. Everyone was elated at their news, especially her Tita Lulu who cried. She promptly told Maya that it was tears of happiness, and that her Mamang would have been happy for her too. Maya and Richard told the family that the wedding is in three months time, prompting a ribbing and a teasing from Jeff and Lino about the paspasan na wedding. The newly-engaged couple just looked at them and grinned happily.

Realizing that the wedding is quite near, and with Maya, just about to start a new job, Lulu offered to help with the preparations, so did Lindsay. Maya thanked them gratefully. With her Tita Lulu, Lindsay, even her Ate Cris and Richard’s mom, she is sure she will have the best support in preparing for hers and Richard’s dream wedding.

Richard and Maya stayed at the Franciscos not only for lunch, but until dinner earlier as the day became a party of sorts, for their engagement. Tito Mario took out his whiskey, and the guys have a round of drinks in the veranda, while the ladies on the other hand, made food and chatted about the upcoming wedding. Lulu, Lindsay, and Maya had wines, while Cris and Cho had juice. It was only an hour ago that Richard and Maya left the Franciscos to go home to their places. As it was, it was difficult for them to say good night to each other and sleep in different places after being together as close as too people could be.

Maya sighed happily, hugged the throw pillow she kept there, and the same time missing Richard. She took comfort in the fact that they will see each other the following day. She was about to get up and go to shower when her phone beeped. She fished it out of the bag she dropped at the entranceway, very distracted by Richard’s kisses. She checked the message. The text was from Richard.

Ricky: Sleeping now, Sweetheart?

Maya: Not yet. I was about to go to bath.

Ricky: Good. I’ll join you! 🙂

Before she can ask how, there was a knock on the door. Maya knows who it is. She opened the door with a smile. She found a sheepish Richard leaning against the wall beside the door, with a bag in hand, still wearing the same clothes he wore earlier.

“I missed you very much. My place is so lonesome. Can I stay here with you, super please?” Richard asked with a loving, beguiling expression. “I don’t think I will be able to sleep without you by my side.”

“Ricky, ikaw talaga.” Maya said lovingly, but nevertheless, very happy that she will not be spending the night without Richard beside her. “Come in.”

“Thank you, Sweetheart.” Richard said happily, giving Maya a searing kiss. Then whispered naughtily, ‘Now about that bath, let’s go.”

Maya giggled, but led Richard to her bedroom. However, it was an hour after that before they made it to bath and two more hours before they succumbed to a very restful sleep, bodies sated, and intertwined. They both woke in the wee hours of the morning, smiled sleepily at each other, then the awareness again. Richard lowered his lips to Maya and it started another fire between them that needed to be doused.

“Rise and shine, sleepyhead.” Richard rained little kisses on Maya’s face as he tried to wake her up the following morning.

“Rickyyyy, I want to sleep some more.” Maya protested sleepily, then burrowed deep into the warm of Richard’s chest.

“But, Sweetheart, hindi ka ba pa gutom, it is almost noon!” Richard remarked, caressing Maya’s near the underside of her breast, as if his hand has a mind of its own. “Come, I have ordered lunch.”

Richard woke up more than an hour ago as his stomach was already protesting. He didn’t have the heart to wake up Maya who was sleeping so peacefully beside him. He decided to order food as he knew that Maya’s pantry is empty. Then he took a shower. The food arrived 10 minutes ago so he decided to wake Maya up. She also mentioned last night that she wanted to run errands before they go to his parents house. At first he tried calling her name, but she didn’t wake up. Instead, she seemed to have been looking for him in bed the way her hand groped sleepily where he had lain down. It touched his heart very much seeing this. He laid down beside her again and gave her little kisses to wake her up slowly and because he can’t help it.

“Ha, tanghali na!” Maya suddenly sat up. “I slept a long time. Bakit hindi mo ako ginising kaagad.”

Richard grinned. “Sweetheart, kanina pa kita ginigising. Masyado ba kitang pinagod,” Richard added naughtily. And that earned him a loving pinch from his beautiful, sleep-tousled fiancee.

“Ricky, ikaw, ha, ang aga-aga pa.” Maya said with a big smile. “Halika na nga, bangon na tayo. Suddenly, I feel hungry. I will just make myself presentable.”

“Maganda ka na. You are the most beautiful girl in the world kahit bagong gising.” Richard teasead her lovingly. Then he too, got out of the bed, gave Maya a quick kiss. “Okay, do what you have to do. I’ll just wait for you in the dining room.”

Fifteen minutes or so later, and after a quick shower, Maya sought Richard and found him sitting on the dining table, drinking a cup of coffee. Before him, were mouthwatering Chinese food of all sorts. “Wow, a feast! Lalo akong ginutom. Thank you very much for this, Sweetheart. You are the best!”

Richard stood up and seated Maya. “I hope you will like the food. Coffee, Sweetheart?”

“Yes please.” Maya said as she started serving Richard yang chow fried rice, hakaw, siomai, broccoli with garlic, and salt and pepper spare ribs. “Enough na ba ang mga ito, Sweetheart?”

“Sobra na, Sweetheart. Thank you. Here’s your coffee. Sorry, hindi iyan kasing sarap ng timpla mo.” Richard sat down on Maya’s left.

“Thank you, Ricky! Okay naman ah. Kasing sarap na rin ng sa akin kasi with love ito.” Maya said with a smile.

Maya and Richard looked at each other and smiled happily. They proceeded to enjoy their hearty lunch. After they have put away the left overs, they got ready for their trip to the nearby shops and the supermarket to replenish Maya’s pantry. They returned to Maya’s condo two hours after. Since they had time, they just rested on the sofa, watching Maya’s favorite old films while driving themselves crazy with little touches here and there. When they can’t take it anymore, Richard carried Maya to the bedroom and they passed the rest of the afternoon delightfully.

Richard parked his BMW in the driveway of a beautiful and huge mansion at a corner lot inside La Vista, three hours later. Maya felt a bit nervous meeting Richard’s mother, though she seemed very nice when she interviewed her. More so, in meeting Roberto Lim, whom according to Richard does not know yet that they are engaged. He asked him mother to keep it between them as he wanted to tell his Papa himself about it.

Richard opened the passenger door and assisted Maya out of the car by offering his hand. “Don’t be nervous, Sweetheart.” Richard assured Maya noticing how cold Maya’s hand is. “They will love you. Mama does already. I’m sure, Papa will be the same.”

“Okay.” Maya said, putting her other hand on top of Richard’s and smiling at her. “Halika na.”

“Maya welcome to our house!” Donya Esmeralda greeted Maya warmly as soon as the door opened. She was waiting for them by the living room. “Ricky son, so nice to see you. Thank you for bringing Maya here, finally. Congratulations to the both of you.”

“Congratulations, on what or why?” Don Roberto asked, upon hearing his wife’s statement. He walked towards them from the direction of his study. “You must be, Maya. Welcome to our house, hija. Finally, nakilala ka rin namin.” He said with a friendly smile to Maya.

“I’m please to meet you po, Mr. Lim, Mrs. Lim.” Maya said, unsure of whether to make beso or shake their hands.  However, Donya Esmeralda made the decision for her. She went to Maya, kissed her on the cheek and hugged her. Don Roberto did the same.

“Thank you for inviting me to your home.” Maya said, a bit overwhelmed at Richard’s parents warm welcome to her.

“Naku, nga pala Maya hija, please call me Mama, and ito namang si Roberto, Papa.” Donya Esmeralda said, then looked at her husband. “Roberto, about that congratulations thing, may wonderful news sa iyo ang mga bata. Ricky, ikaw na nga ang magsabi sa Papa mo, tutal iyan ang request mo.”

Richard took hold of Maya’s hand and intertwined it with his. “Papa, Maya and I are getting married in three months. She agreed to be my wife while we were in Mindoro. I told Mama, ako na lang ang magsasabi sa iyo.” He told his father while looking at his fiancee with all the love he is feeling.

Don Roberto looked at his son, then at his fiancee. He was startled when Richard mentioned that they are getting married already! He thought they were just in the initial stage of being boyfriend and girlfriend, based on what his wife has told him. But he know his son, they may butt heads in business, but he is not the type to rush into something he is not sure of. Besides, from where he was standing, he can see how much his son loves Maya and she is the same, judging by the way she was looking at him and supporting him while he tells him about their engagement.

“Indeed, congratulations to both of you! Welcome to our family, Maya.” Don Roberto said with a big smile. “Son, I’m happy for you. Sa wakas, magkakaapo na rin kami nitong Mama mo.”

Richard breathed easily with that. So far, so good with his and Maya’s road to forever. “Thank you very much, Papa. About the apo, Maya and I need to work doubly hard for that pa.” He said teasingly.

Maya blushed a bit. “Donya…errr, Mama, Papa, thank you very much po, especially sa pagtanggap.”

“Maya hija, this maybe the first time we met you, but I know how much my son loves you. Saka, base sa kwento sa amin ni Ricky, swerte nga siya sa iyo.” Donya Esmeralda said.

“I agree with Esme, Maya.” Don Roberto assured Maya. “Saka, sa tinagal-tagal pumili nitong anak ko ng makakatuwang niya sa buhay, I’m sure, he picked the best girl for him and the one he would love for life. Di ba, Ricky.”

“Yes Papa. Like I have told you before. I will just get married to the girl I will love very much and can’t live without.” Richard said, with Maya’s image entering his consciousness when he was telling his father about it, years ago.

“Naku, teka, bakit ba nandito tayo. Let’s go na nga sa kumedor at let’s have our dinner. Doon na lang tayo magkwentuhan.”  Donya Esmeralda said. “Roberto, halika na.”

“See, I told you, everything will be okay, Sweetheart.” Richard whispered to Maya as he accompanied her to the dining room. “I love you. I’m so happy.”

“I love you too, Sweetheart. Walang pagsidlan. I’m happy that we have your parents’ blessings too.” Maya said, looking at Richard lovingly and with a big smile.

Maya and the Lims had a wonderful dinner. Partly, it was them getting to know Maya more as they ate the wonderful food prepared by the Lim’s cook, Sabel, and also celebrating Maya and Richard’s engagement. From their vacation in Mindoro, with Maya and Richard telling the Lims about the trip they took around San Nicolas, to their stay in the resort and the ancestral home of Maya’s family, the discussion shifted to the preparations for the wedding, with Donya Esmeralda offering to help like Tita Lulu did. Maya mentioned that her aunt also offered to help, also her cousin-in-law, Lindsay.

“Maybe, the four of us can have lunch soon, so we can discuss the preparations.” Donya Esmeralda suggested.

“Sure po. I’m sure, Tita Lulu would like to meet you also.” Maya replied.

“I have a better idea,” Don Roberto said. “Maybe it’s better if our families meet over dinner, para magkakilala na rin tayo ng husto. Parang, sort of, pamamahikan nitong si Ricky.” He suggested.

“Brilliant idea, Roberto.” Donya Esmeralda seconded happily. “Isn’t it Maya? Can you please ask your aunt and uncle if they are free next Saturday. We can meet at the Polo Club.”

“Sige po, I will ask them tomorrow.” Maya said. She also likes the idea of the two families meeting each other and getting to know each other. Richard felt the same.

Maya and Richard stayed with the elder Lims until past 10 o’clock in the evening, just chatting and having a wonderful time. As the evening wore on, Don Roberto got more than convinced that his son has found his lifelong mate. Whatever tiny misgiving he had at the start of the evening was gone. He likes Maya a lot. Earlier, he must admit, he had a bit of misgiving due to the shortness of their courtship, but he realized that his son made the right decision. He is looking forward to gaining a daughter and some grandchildren soon. Donya Esmerald was feeling very happy, looking at her son and Maya. It reminded her of the time she and Roberto fell in love and was about to get married. Her son chose well. She is glad to finally have a daughter.

“O paano, Ma, Pa, magpapaalam na po kami ni Maya.” Richard said after their last round of coffee and dessert. “May pasok na pala tayong lahat tomorrow.”

“Oo nga, but we can take it easy naman, son. Start pa lang ulit ng office, and we own the company after all.” Donya Esmeralda teased. “Maya, I’ll see you at the office tomorrow. Thank you for coming to dinner. Hwag mong kalimutan ang dinner invitation to your family, and a lunch out, with us ladies lang.”

“Yes po, Mama. I will remember. Thank you for having me. Papa, magpapaalam na po kami ni Ricky.” Maya said as she hugged Richard’s parents one after the other.

“O sige, mag-ingat kayo. By the way, if there will be a ladies lunch out, maybe I can invite your Tito Mario na mag-golf.” Don Roberto said.

“Sure po, he will like that.” Maya replied, smiling.

“Pa, Ma, aalis na kami. See you po sa office.” Richard gave his parents a hug and a kiss.

More than an hour later, Richard and Maya were inside Maya’s condo. They went there by default. There was no question now of Richard going home to his place.

“Ricky, paano pala ang office clothes mo? Did you bring those too?” Maya remembered when they were about to sleep.

“Hmmm, I’ll just go to my place tomorrow morning while you are getting ready for work.” Richard said as he reclined against the headboard. “Kayang-kaya ko iyon.”

“Ikaw, okay lang ba. Di mo naman ako kailangang samahan. Baka kailangan ka ng mas maaga sa work.” Maya said.

“I want to take you to work my Mrs. Lim-to-be. First day mo yata. Siyempre dapat full support ako sa iyo.” Richard said. “Halika na tulog na tayo. Enough of talk about work.” He then reeled Maya towards him, then started planting little kisses on her face, then her neck.

“Hmmm, parang hindi naman tulog ang nasa isip mo ngayon.” Maya said teasingly, liking what Richard is doing.

Richard grinned naughtily, gazing at Maya heatedly, then he shut Maya’s half-hearted protest with a searing kiss as he dimmed the lights with his other hand. It was after midnight when they finally managed to sleep.

“I love you my wife-to-be.” Richard whispered before sleep claim them.

“I love you too, my husband-to-be.” Maya replied as she settled in into the crook of Richard’s left arm.

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Windblown – Chapter 17

Fireworks

“Happy New Year, Sweetheart!” Maya stood on tiptoe and gave Richard a kiss on the lips while cupping his face. “Thank you for the best ending to my 2014. I’m so looking forward to the new year with you. I’m sure it will be the best ever, and also the coming years. Looking forward to us, together!”

“Happy New Year, Sweetheart!” Richard grinned and caressed Maya’s hair lovingly. “We will have a very good one, especially now that you agreed to be my wife. I love you my Mrs. Lim to be, very, very much! You made me the happiest guy this evening! I’m looking forward to our long and happy life together, with the beautiful children that we will have.”

“Ditto, Mr. Lim! I love you very much. My heart is so full!” Maya replied lovingly with her arms around Richard’s nape, teasingly caressing him. “ And how many kids do you want Mr. Lim?”

“Hmmm, how about half a dozen, Sweetheart!” He replied, grinning.

“Kalahating dosena!!!” Maya exclaimed. “Sweetheart, parang ang dami naman yata.”

“Well, sabi nga, di ba ‘the more, the merrier’! Richard kissed Maya’s lips lightly. “Since we are both only kids, I want a big family. But of course, it depends on you too, and what God will give us.”

“I agree, Sweetheart. Malungkot ang mag-isang anak. Though, lucky rin ako since nandiyan sina Ate Cris and Lino. Basta kung saan ka, doon ako. Six kung six!” Maya said, grinning at her husband to be.

“So, Sweetheart, maybe, we should work on it now, para makarami.” Richard whispered teasingly, naughtily. “Simulan na natin.”

“Ha!” Maya said, surprised, at the same time, she blushed, getting Richard’s joke, her imagination conjuring Richard and her in a bedroom, making passionate love. “Sweetheart, ikaw talaga.” She managed to say, lovingly pinching Richard on the side.

“Welll, ang sa akin lang…” Richard said, with a huge smile on his face, teasing, loving the way, Maya is reacting to his teasing.

Maya and Richard shared a heated look, then smiled at each other lovingly. Richard hugged Maya from the back, his arms wrapped around her waist, and they both looked up at the sky and the infinite stars decorating it and felt this overwhelming happiness, looking at the future with so much joy. The fireworks joined the stars in lighting up the night as they continue celebrating their engagement, in their own private world.

When the noise from the firecrackers had died down, and only the stars decorating the night after the beautiful fireworks to celebrate their engagement, Richard and Maya, arms around each other returned to the house which had been like a real home for the two of them the past several days.

Upon reaching the veranda, Richard surprised Maya when he put his arm around her knees, then the other one on her back, and carried her across the threshold!

“Sweetheart!!!” Maya blurted out as she held on to dear life.” What is that for?”

“Well, isn’t that what the tradition says?” Richard replied with a big grin on his face.

“Yes, but that is for newly-weds! We just got engaged!” Maya smiled, looking up at Richard’s handsome face.

“Well, you know what, Sweetheart, I feel like we are this evening, that we did, with the commitment we made to each other. I’m committed to you for life. You are the only one until I die. I do want us to get married, the soonest if you will agree with me, as I want God to bless our union and share our happiness with our families and friends.” Richard said passionately as he put down Maya, then cupping her chin to look deeply into her eyes.

“Oh, Sweetheart! I feel the same way too. Yes, we can get married the soonest.” Maya assured Richard. She too does not want a long engagement as they have waited long enough to be together. She wanted to start their life together the soonest. “Is in three months time, okay with you?”

“Hmmm, how about tomorrow, or next week?” Richard countered, grinning. “Para we can start na talaga on our half a dozen kids.”

“Sweetheart! It’s too soon! Saka, ikaw ha, one track mind!” Maya pouted and protested good-naturedly. “I’m sure your Mama and my Tita Lulu will protest too if we just elope and have the wedding next week!”

“Biro lang, Sweetheart. Three months is okay with me.” Richard lightly kissed Maya. “I can wait, Maya, for everything.” He added meaningfully.

“Thank you, Ricky.” Maya replied as they walked towards their rooms. When they reached Maya’s room, she said good night to Richard.

“Sweet dreams, my love.” Maya said lovingly.

“Of course, Sweetheart! For sure, ikaw ang magiging laman ng panaginip ko.” Richard cupped Maya’s face, then lowered his lips to hers. “Soon, we don’t have to part for the night.” He said heatedly.

Maya blushed suddenly, imagining waking up with Richard beside her, and more. She smiled at him sweetly, trying to still her fast beating heart and her physical reaction to Richard’s heated gaze. “I’m so looking forward to waking up beside you, Ricky.”

They shared another searing kiss before parting for the night.

Maya looked at her engagement ring one more time, before she proceeded to take a shower. It was probably past one o’clock in the morning, but she was very much wide awake. Maya guessed it was because of hers and Richard’s unforgettable evening, coupled with the long nap she had in the afternoon.

Maya tried to sleep, but every time she relived the events of the previous night, the harder it was to sleep. After half an hour of tossing and turning, she decided to go to the kitchen and make herself a glass of warm milk. Maybe it will relax her and make her fall asleep finally.

She stopped just before she opened her bedroom door, debating whether she would change into regular clothes or just go down in her chosen sleep wear that night, a tank top and short shorts. She opted not to since it was in the middle of the night and besides it was just Richard and her there, and he is probably very much in sleep land by that time.

Maya opened her bedroom door at the same time Richard was opening his. They surprised each other at the hallway leading to the kitchen!

“Sweetheart!”

“Sweetheart!”

“Hindi ka rin makatulog?” Maya asked Richard who was only clad in pajama bottoms, his muscled chest bare to her gaze. She felt herself catching her breath. The effect of a shirtless Richard in the middle of the night was double than what she usually feel at the sight of him wearing his swim shorts!

“Hindi eh, Sweetheart! I was remembering our wonderful evening!” Richard replied, noticing that Maya was only clad in a very sexy tank top and shorts that showed off her endless legs. He also noticed that she was without a bra! Heat pooled in inside him at the sight before he can stop his reaction to the lovely view she presented to him. “Ikaw rin ba? Saan ang punta mo?”

Maya getting self-conscious with her skimpy attire and Richard’s heated gaze which he tried to mask, had to take deep breaths before she can reply. “Sa kitchen, magtitimpla sana ng milk. Hindi kasi ako antukin. Naalala ko rin ang evening natin.”

Richard smiled at his fiancee lovingly. “I’m glad, hindi pa ako nag-iisa na hindi makatulog. Halika, let’s make your milk and I will get my glass of water,” he said as he put his hand on Maya’s back to propel her to the kitchen. Maya shivered at Richard’s touch. Richard felt a jolt also, but he tried to control his body’s reaction.

Maya went straight to the kettle and filled it with water, while Richard on the other hand, poured himself a glass of water which he gulped in one go. Several minutes after, Maya was stirring her glass of milk. She put it down on the table to get herself a glass of water too. Apparently, Richard was intending to do the same. They collided. Richard steadied Maya.

“Sorry, Sweetheart!” He said, holding Maya in the arms with only a small space separating them. “Are you okay?”

“Y-yes, I’m okay.” Maya managed to say, very much aware of Richard’s proximity and the fact that he was not wearing a shirt, and her hand encounted bare flesh when she steadied herself against him. She sounded breathless.

Richard, on the other hand, was unable to take his eyes off Maya’s twin peaks, clearly outlined by the form-fitting top she was wearing.

Richard and Maya’s eyes met and the awareness of each other which has been simmering since the afternoon at the back waterfall, rose to the surface with a force they were unable to stop anymore. They looked heatedly at each other. They were overcame with a desire so strong, which they can’t fight anymore.

“Maya….” Richard whispered longingly before lowering his lips to hers.

Richard gave Maya a searing kiss, putting all the love, want and desire he was feeling for her in that one kiss. Maya opened her lips to accept Richard’s kiss. She responded in kind. Richard kissed Maya thoroughly before seeking entrance to her mouth. Their tongues sought each other and engaged into a love duel. They can’t seemed to get enought of each other. Their passion so strong, that they forgot everything else and their awareness was centered on each other.

Richard’s hand crept into the hem of Maya’s tank top and sought her twin peaks.

“Ricky….” Maya said breathlessly as Richard’s questing hand found her breast and fondled it lovingly. She felt electrocuted when his thumb found her aching peak and tweaked it. Richard gave the same loving attention to the other one. The twin assault on her mouth and her breasts was almost too much for Maya. She felt like she was on fire and her knees are going wobbly on her.

Richard too felt like he was on fire, wanting Maya very much. He too had a hard time controlling his desires as Maya caresses leave a trail of hot want in his system.

“Sweetheart, I want you very much.” He managed to say to her in his desire-laden voice. “I’m losing it. I think we better stop while we still can. I promised to wait.”

“Ricky, Sweetheart. I want you very much too.” Maya replied. “We don’t have to stop.” She managed to say, then she initiated the hot kiss that had their desires for each other spiking and sending them off to the place where they both wanted to be.

Richard gave in to the heat of the moment. He trailed hot kisses on Maya’s neck, while his hand was busy loving her breasts and teasing her maddeningly. Maya was going crazy with the assault to her senses. If not for the kitchen counter behind her, she would have been a puddle on the floor. Her knees were just about to buckle under. She caressed Richard and gave him a trail of hot kisses to on his shoulder, then mimicked what he did to her by touching him there too, which almost made him totally lose it.

With both of them wanting more, Richard carried Maya back to her bedroom. He put her gently on the bed, then looked at her well kissed mouth and breasts that were aching to be touched and be loved again and again.

“You are so beautiful and so desirable, Sweetheart.” He said lovingly, before slowly removing Maya’s top while giving her another searing kiss.

When Richard saw Maya’s perfect breasts, he looked at her with so much heat that Maya felt an answering heat that travel from her breasts to her core. Richard removed his pajama and it was Maya’s turn to gasped, loving the way her fiance is built, all muscles, so beautiful, and she too wanted to kiss that muscled chest lovingly.

Richard proceeded to love Maya after slowly removing her last piece of clothing, her shorts. He trailed kisses all over her face, neck, the valley between her breasts, her twin peaks and below, to her core. His passion driving them wilder and wilder until they both can’t take it anymore. They needed relief.

“Richard….” Maya moaned so swept away with the tide of passion she was feeling in the arms of the only man she will ever love. “I want…..”

“Maya, Sweetheart…” Richard muttered in his passion-laden voice. He understood what Maya meant but unable to verbalize. He positioned himself on top of Maya and slowly slipped into her, taking into consideration her innocence.

Maya felt the initial pain, but after she got used to Richard’s size and length, she nodded, and they moved together. It was slow at first, then it built up, until it reached a frenzy and their passion for each other became too much. They reached the peak together. Their sighs and moans where the only sound in the dark room as they flew to fulfilment, physically melding.

“Sweetheart, are you okay?” Richard asked Maya lovingly and gently after he managed to catch his breath after that soul altering experience with Maya. What he felt when they finally reached the height of pleasure together was indescribable. He caressed her hair.

“I’m okay, Sweetheart.” Maya managed to say. She too was still feeling the after effects of what she and Richard experienced moments ago. She felt like she was one with him, body and soul. She knew that both of them didn’t plan for this, but she never regret it. “Thank you for being gentle with me, my love.”

Richard smiled and looked at his future wife lovingly. “Sweetheart, I love you very much. Being with you like that, was indescribable. Only you made me feel like that.”

“The same for me, Sweetheart! I felt joined to you, body and soul.” Maya lightly kissed Richard’s lips.

Richard moved to get a better angle and gave Maya a searing kiss. Their desires for each other rekindled again. But Richard knew that it maybe to soon for Maya. He stopped, put his arms around her and then the blanket over them. They didn’t bother to put their clothes back on. They slept in each other’s arms without a stitch on.

Richard woke up before Maya. The sun was very much up. It was probably around nine o’clock in the moving. Maya was still sleeping so soundly beside him. The comforter barely covering her nakedness! They must have both kicked it off during the night. She looked so beautiful sleeping peacefully with a ghost of a smile on her lovely face.

He reclined with his head supported by his hand as he looked at his beautiful fiancee. He was very much looking forward to making love to her, but he never expected it would happened on the night thy got engaged, the happiest moment of his life so far and it got happier the physical expression of their love for each other. Indeed, it was a wonderful start to a beautiful year for him and his beloved. Waking up beside her like this is the best feeling ever.

Richard slowly caressed Maya’s cheek with the back of his hand, remembering their  night together. His passionate love. He will never get enough of her and the love for her is just overflowing. Maya slowly opened her eyes and when she saw Richard, she gave him the most beautiful smile.

“Good morning, Sweetheart!” Maya said, looking at Richard with so much love. So this is how it feels, she mused. She felt like she was at the top of the world and that she can take on anything.

“Good morning, Sweetheart! How are you?” Richard asked solicitously. In th light of day, he also wants to be sure that Maya is not regretting them making beautiful love during the night.

“I’m okay, Sweetheart.” Maya replied, then realized, what was Richard’s underlying question. “And I don’t regret us making love last night. It was the most wonderful thing, to be joined to you like that. I love you and like you, I’m committed to you for life, with or without a ring. We have proven that the past seven years we were apart.”

“Oh, Sweetheart. Thank you. I love you so. I don’t want you to have regrets, thinking that what happened was too soon.” Richard cupped Maya’s face, then lowered his head to give her a kiss.

“Ricky, hindi pa ako nagto-toothbrush!” Maya suddenly became self-conscious, covering her mouth.

“I don’t care.” Richard said, smiling. Then proceded to give her a searing good morning kiss.

However, the kiss was like a match that sparked off the fire between them again. Before they knew it, they were at each other, wanting to temporarily slake off their unquenchable thirst for each other.

It was already around noon, when Maya and Richard managed to get out of bed to satisfy their hunger for food, this time. The shower took longer than usual as Richard surprised Maya by joining her there. They spent the rest of the first day of 2015 in each other’s arms, so completely lost in their own world. Indeed, it was the best new year celebration ever for the two of them.

 

Note: Happy Sunday to you all! Thanks for the comments! ❤ 🙂

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Windblown – Chapter 16

Culmination

“Wake up, my Cinderella!”  Richard said softly, looking lovingly at his sleeping girlfriend, or if his heart’s fervent desire will be granted tomorrow, his fiancee. Not contented with just looking at her, he started giving her feather kisses on her brows, eyes, cheeks and finally her pouty lips.

Maya at first thought, she was dreaming, and what a very nice dream it was!  She dreamt that Richard was kissing her oh so softly and lovingly after he called her his Cinderella. She mumbled, “Yes, my Prince Charming.” Then slowly, she opened her eyes and the first thing she saw was her boyfriend’s handsome face, with a big, loving smile on his lips.

“Hello, Sweetheart!” Richard said. “ I hate to wake you up when you are sleeping so peacefully, but it is getting late and it looks like it’s going to rain. The roads going down may turn muddy and slippery.”

“Hi Sweetheart! I thought I was dreaming. In my dreams I heard you called me ‘Cinderella’!” Maya said cupping Richard’s face affectionately. “That’s why I called you, Prince Charming!”

“I did. When I first met you, I thought that you were like Cinderella. You disappeared into the night after you captivated me.” Richard said, smiling. “The difference was, she left a glass slipper for her prince, and you just disappeared into thin air, as if I just imagined you! But I can’t be, since I was never the same since then.”

“Ikaw talaga, Sweetheart, grabe ka talagang magpakilig. Akala ko ba nagmamadali tayo at uulan na?” Maya kissed Richard’s lips lightly. Then looked him in the eyes with so much love. “You know what, you looked like Prince Charming too, the first time I caught a glimpse of you from the stage.”

“I love you, Maya. I thank God every day that we found each other again.”  Richard said, overcame with emotions. He will never get enough of loving her and thanking God and fate that they met again and is having this second chance.

“Me too, Ricky! I love you very much.” Maya replied, touching his beloved face.

Maya and Richard shared a kiss, then another, and another, until they got lost in their world again. They only realized it when the sound of the rain interrupted their interlude.

“Naku, Ricky, inabutan na tayo ng ulan!” Maya sat up from the hammock, her lips so well-kissed.

“Okay lang, Sweetheart. Mukhang hindi naman malakas at matagal. Palipasin lang ng natin ng kaunti.” Richard laid down on the hammock more comfortably and reeled Maya back to his chest and cuddled with her.

“This is the nicest!” Richard remarked, smiling broadly. “You in my arms like this, as we watch the falling rain and in a world of our own. I can stay like this forever!”

“Forever, Sweetheart?” Maya asked suddenly, liking the idea of a forever with this wonderful guy.

“Yes, why not, Sweetheart?” Then whispered lovingly, “I want a forever with you, Maya.”

“Oh, Sweetheart! I would like that too.” Maya hugged Richard tight, then gave him a quick kiss. “I would like that too, Ricky.”

Richard grinned broadly, hearing that. His heart somersaulted with joy. He is so looking forward to the evening he had been planning for Maya and him tomorrow.

Maya and Richard stayed an hour more in the hut, contented to watch the rain with their bodies intertwined, closer not only physically, bt emotionally as they felt they have unconsciously stepped into another level of their relationship that afternoon.

It was tricky going down the mountains with the road muddied. But Richard turned out to be very skilled at navigating the tricky road. He told Maya that during his 20s, he used to do a lot of dirt bike riding with his friends from the university. Like going up, it was an exhilarating ride going down with Maya holding on to Richard’s waist tight, their thighs rubbing as they navitaged the rough road.

Richard and Maya reached the resort, both slightly wet and muddied as there was still a bit of a drizzle when they left the falls and there were puddles of water on the road which they hit quite a lot, and every time they did so, Maya laughed and shrieked happily, waiting for the splash of the muddy water. There were instances where Richard teased Maya and deliberately hit the puddles, which earned him loving pinches from her.

They were a sight. Catherine just shook her head when she saw them. She also envied their obvious happiness at how their afternoon turned out. They waved at her, then went straight to the bungalow and took a shower.

Richard was coming out of the kitchen, wearing navy blue loose cotton pants and a polo shirt, with two steaming cups of coffee when Maya went down after her refreshing shower. She was dress in a long flowing skirt with ethnic prints and a salmon coloured sleeveless blouse.

“Just what I need, Sweetheart.” Maya took the tray from Richard and brought it to the veranda. She put it on the coffee table and made a cup for Ricky. “What are our plans for this evening, Sweetheart?”

“Hmmm, I’m thinking, we can just stay in tonight. Have dinner brought here, then we can watch movies. Parang with this weather, it’s just very nice to stay indoors.” Richard sipped his coffee and enjoyed the first rush of the hot drink through his system. “Unless of course, you want  to do something else.”

“Your plan is perfect Sweetheart, just what I have in mind as well.” Maya smiled. “It’s nice like this, just the two of us!”

“Great! I will just order our dinner, Sweetheart. What would you like?” Richard fished his mobile phone from his pocket.

“Hmmm, how about sinigang na hipon or anything na may sabaw. Parang masarap kainin in this weather!” Maya suggested.

“Okay, I like that as well.” Richard called the restaurant and order sinigang na hipon, as well as grilled pork with ensaladang mangga and bagoong, grilled eggplant, and calamares for their appetizer. For dessert, he ordered buco pandan.

“Kaya ba nating lahat na kainin iyan, Sweetheart?” Mara remarked smiling when Richard put his phone down.

“Kaya iyan, Sweetheart. We haven’t eaten since our picnic.” Richard sat down again and resumed drinking his coffee.

“Sabagay.” Maya said she said smiling. She also realized that she was very hungry and her tummy was grumbling a bit, just thinking of the food they will have.

More than an hour later, their dinner arrived. It was a lot of food for two people but surprisingly, they worked an appetite for everything. Maya felt like her tummy was groaning from all the delicious food she and Richard enjoyed eating as the dining room of the house overlooking Donya Esmeralda’s flower garden. They left the door opened, to let in the smell of the roses, and other flowers which she can’t identify in the dark, in bloom.  The screen door served as a deterrent to small insects and mosquitoes. Maya remarked to Richard that they never gotten around to fully exploring the garden. Richard promised that they wil do so the next day.

Soon after the restaurant staff tidied up and pick up the dishes, Richard and Maya settled into the living room and watched an old movie musical, ‘Gigi’, which Richard borrowed from his mother’s collection of movies in the house. When the movie was ending, Richard noticed that Maya was not saying anything much and when he checked from where she was half-lying, on his broad chest, he realized that she had fallen asleep. Too much activities in one afternoon, plus their sumptuous dinner lulled her into sleep!

Richard smiled lovingly at his sleeping girlfriend. He carried her to the guest bedroom. Maya didn’t even stir when he put her down the bed. he made her comfortable, covered her with comforter, then gazed lovingly at his sleeping beloved before kissing her good night and closing the door softly.

Unlike Maya, Richard found it difficult to fall asleep. His mind was full of his upcoming proposal to Maya. He smiled happily, several more hours and their journey to forever will start. When he managed to fall asleep, he dreamt of two kids playing with him and Maya in the spot where they have been near the falls, a beautiful girl with mischief in her eyes and cute little boy with an angelic expression on his face as he looks at his mom.

The following morning, Maya woke up with a start. “Oh no, I slept on Ricky again!” Maya muttered, seeing that it was quite bright outside and she was still wearing the clothes she wore the night before. She got out of bed fast and took a quick shower, with the intention of making breakfast for Richard to make up for conking out on him again.

Several minutes after, she walked down towards the direction of the kitchen. The house was very quiet. She was hoping that Richard was still in bed. However, when she walked into the kitchen she noticed the coffee being brewed in the coffee maker in the corner. But no signs of Richard. She walked towards the opened sliding doors that led to Donya Esmeralda’s flower garden and that’s where  she saw him, putting finishing touches on the breakfast he had been putting on the table.

“Good morning, Sweetheart! Glad that you are up! I was about to get you.” Richard smiled at Maya as he put forks and spoons on the placemats he had put on the table.

Maya walked briskly towards Richard, gave her a hug. “Sweetheart, tinulugan na naman pala kita. I’m so sorry.” She said in a contrite tone. Then proceed to help him.

“It’s completely okay, Maya. You must have been tired from our outing at the falls.” Richard caressed her face. “Besides, I like putting you to bed like that.”

“Sobrang swerte ko naman talaga sa iyo, Sweetheart. I love you so.” Maya said. “I feel so love and cherished. Thank you.”

“Sabi ko naman sa ito, Maya, for you, anything.” Richard said lovingly. “Halika na breakfast na tayo. I had the restaurant staff cooked us champorado and tuyo for breakfast! Parang masarap din this morning!”

“I agree with you. Medyo matagal na rin akong hindi nakakain ng mga ito.” Maya thanked Richard as he seated her on the chair facing Donya Esmeralda’s magnifiicent garden. “Wow, your mom’s garden is really very beautiful! I can spend hours here. Who maintains it when she is not here?”

“Mama hired a very good gardener who tends it lovingly. We got lucky with Mang Jaime.”  Richard sipped the coffee Maya made for him, savouring the taste. Maya really has a knack for making it better. “I thought the best time to see this place is in the morning , when the sun is just coming out from that direction, so I had breakfast set up here.”

“Thank you, Sweetheart.” Maya said simply, lovingly, putting her hand on top of Richard’s. “You are making me so very, very, happy everyday.”

“You don’t have to thank me all the time, Sweetheart. It makes me so happy to see you happy. I love making you happy.” Richard put his other hand on top of his and Maya’s clasped hands. “I will be happy to do it for the rest of our lives.” Richard added obliquely, looking at Maya intently as if looking deep into her soul.

Maya’s heart made a lurch. This is not the first time Richard hinted of a forever between them. Her heart sang. She smiled at him lovingly. “And I the same, Richard! I would like to make you happy too!”

“You are, Maya! You are! You don’t know how much.” Richard lowered his lips to Maya and gave her a sweet kiss.

They resumed eating several long moments later. After the breakfast that they had enjoyed so much, Richard and Maya opted to stay in the bungalow, just lazing around. After lunch, Richard told Maya that he will just meet someone again. Maya said to go ahead as she would just read a book.

Richard went to the main resort to talk to Catherine and Aldrich and to check if everything is in place for his special evening with Maya. His two co-conspirators were beside themselves in excitement with what is about to take place that evening. There is even an added kilig on Catherine’s part. Richard smiled at them. His happiness was overflowing!

When Richard returned to the house, he found Maya in the day bed in the garden, her half-read book lying on her chest. She was napping. He gave her a quick kiss, then joined her there. They had a very restful nap amid Donya Esmeralda’s flowers and the centuries old trees that shelter the bed and made the place cooler.

They were woken up from their nap by the loud sound of a firecracker going off. That early, someone was already welcoming the new year. Maya realized that it was already twilight.

“Ricky, Sweetheart! Grabe, ang haba ng tulog natin!” Maya exclaimed. “Pagabi na pala.”

“It’s so nice here with you, Sweetheart. I slept like a babe.” Richard stretched his muscular arms upwards, shaking off sleep.

“We forgot to talk earlier about our plans this evening. I assumed that we will just go the resort to welcome the new year, with the other guests?” Maya asked. “Or do you have another plan in mind?”

Richard gave her a mysterious smile, then looked discreetly at his watch. “Just get ready, Sweetheart. I’ll see you in an hour or so.” Before Maya could ask more questions, he took hold of her hand and led her inside the house. He deposited her in front of her room and with a big smile left her there, whistling a line from West Side Story, “Tonight, tonight/ It all began tonight/ I saw you and the world went away….”

“What happened kaya kay Ricky? Parang nagmamadali at sobrang excited!” Maya mused, but shrugged it off. She too felt very excited for this evening for some unexplainable reason. Maybe, because this will be hers and Richard’s first new year’s celebration together.

Maya took a bath. She was at a lost on how to dress for dinner as she forgot to ask Richardif they need to dress up. Come to think of it, she mused, he was a bit evasive!  Since it was New Year’s Eve, Maya decided to dress up a bit. Good thing, she always brings a more dressy outfit every time she goes somewhere as she never knows what will happen. She likes being prepared and that help during this trip, when Richard and her decided to extend! This time, she packed a violet cocktail dress that reached to her knees and hugged her curves. The dress is sleeveless and classically cut, with a deep V neckline.

When she had finished dressing up, Maya went out of the room and looked for Richard. His room was opened, and yet no sign of Richard. He was not in any of their usual meeting places. When she reached the front porch, she noticed the big bouquet of sunflowers on the hammock there. Attached to the beautiful flowers was a note from Richard that they will have dinner by the beach, and that he would be waiting for her there.

Maya took the flowers with her. She walked down the path leading to the beach. By then, she had realized that she was in for another surprise treat from Richard. What it was she had no clue, but is looking forward at finding out! The path was lit by candles in colourful glasses. When Maya was nearing the beach, she saw a table,  inside a tent festooned with capiz lanterns, beautifully set for two, with flowers of all variety decorating the middle. The table also sat on a big platform with red carpet. When she reached it, she asaw a group of musicians by the far side of the tent. She was about to check where Richard is, when he came behind the musicians. He was dressed in jeans, shirt and a sports jacket, similar to what he wore the first time they saw each other in San Nicolas all those years ago. He had a big smile on his face.

“Ricky, this is so beautiful!” Maya remarked, looking around with wonder, placing the flowers she was carrying on the table. “What a wonderful surprise! Thank you, Sweetheart.”

“I’m glad you like it.” Richard gazed at Maya, lovingly. “May I dance with you, Ms. Maya Dela Rosa!” He held out his hand to her.

“Here, Sweetheart?” Maya said smiling, with her heart beating so fast.

“Yes!” Richard simply said, and waited for her to take his hand.

When Maya did, the musicians started playing the melody from ‘Love Has Come of Age!

“Oh , Sweetheart, I so love that song! We will dance to our song!” Maya went into Richard’s arms and they danced to the beautiful music being sang by the two singers in the group, as close as two people could be, cheek to cheek, body to body and heart to heart.

“You know, if this was seven years ago and this was the main room of the San Nicolas Golf and Country Club, this was the first thing I would have done the first opportunity I got, ask you to dance with me.” Richard murmured softly to Maya as he savoured this moment with her, caressing her hair.

“Really!” Maya looked up at Richard’s handsome face. “And if you did, I would have said yes, to the exclusion of anyone else there.”

“I would have danced the night away with you,” Richard continued. “Then I would have asked if I could take you home, and see you again, and again until we got to know each other better. Then, I would court you and declare my feelings for you. Then if you had agreed to be my girlfriend, I would have proposed to you and ask you to be with me for always.”

“Oh Ricky….” By this time, Maya’s heart was galloping from the emotions she was feeling, waiting on what he would say next and where this would lead.

“Then if you had said yes, we would have been married and probably have several kids now.” Richard continued saying in his voice, full of love for Maya. “It didn’t happen seven years ago, but as we are meant to be, what we have started seven years ago, came to fulfilment this time. We are having another opportunity for that love that didn’t come to a culmination the first time around. I’m so glad to have a second chance with you, Maya.”

Richard then let go of Maya, knelt on one knee before her, got something from his pocket, and asked her with all the love he is feeling what he had been wanting to ask her fervently, “Marry me, please. Let’s not waste our second chance. I want a forever with you, Maya.”

Maya felt tears in her eyes from sheer happiness. She had difficulty breathing from the loud thumping of her heart. Here it is the promise of forever with Richard. She didn’t have inkling that Richard is planning a proposal, this evening. But the night is so perfect for this, the moment so right. Filled with emotion, she knelt before him too, touched his beloved face, then softly said,”Yes!”

Richard grinned, so very happy that Maya agreed to be his wife! He gently put the beautiful platinum ring on her finger, kissed her hand, then guided her up. He caressed her face, then lowered his lips to her. They shared their first kiss as an engaged couple, with all the love they are feeling, as the singers where singing the most beautiful part of the song. ‘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 love very much my beautiful fiancee.” Richard whispered lovingly, so full of love for his Cinderella.

“I love you very much too, my husband to be.” Maya whispered back. She felt like she was floating on air. She felt like she was dreaming, but seeing Richard’s handsome face so full of love for her, she knows that this is real.

Richard led Maya to the table, while the musicians quietly faded away into the night. Richard prepared a feast for his proposal dinner, including a bottle of the best champagne that Donya Esmeralda could get hold of. While they were eating, Maya asked Richard how did he pull the proposal in such a short time. Richard told her that he had help from his mother and told her of James’s special trip to Mindoro the day before for all the things he needed for this.

“Sweetheart, you are the best ever when it comes to surprises.” Maya said as she and Richard were enjoying their dessert. “I’m looking forward to meeting your mother, I mean meeting her as your fiancee, and thanking her too!” Maya felt very happy saying the word, fiancee! She and Richard are now engaged and it fills her with so much happiness.

“She is looking forward to meeting you too, Sweetheart. She told me, I better bring you to the house as my fiancee.” Richard said smiling.

Richad and Maya walked down the beach barefooted, enjoying the cool breeze after their long and leisurely dinner. They also brought the rest of the champagne with them, and a mat. They laid down on the mat when they found the perfect spot, and watched the countless stars, waiting for the coming of the new year, in their own private world. At midnight, the sky was lit by a thousand fireworks. Richard told Catherine and Aldrich to make it extra special that evening as they will not be just be welcoming the new year, but celebrating his and Maya’s engagement as well, if everything went according to plan, which it did, beautifully.

“To us, Sweetheart!” Richard said, hugging Maya tight and kissing her hair.

“To us, Sweetheart.” Maya replied lovingly, giving Richard a quick kiss too.

Richard and Maya toasted each other. Both of them grinning goofily. Then they shared a long, heated kiss, so full of love they have for each other, as the old year gave way to the new one, and with it, the start of their beautiful life together, finally!

 

Note: And finally, I’m back! 🙂

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