The moment she stepped inside the cab after leaving Richard’s condo, Maya allowed the tears she’d been holding to flow silently.
She felt humiliated with what she did earlier.
She was very concerned that she might have caused a big problem for Richard. She never desired that to happen. She cares for him so much that it was never her intention to bring him trouble.
The lovely lady in Richard’s room must be her girlfriend or fiancee. Judging from what the woman is wearing, she must be very close to Richard, intimate even. The lady’s reaction also revealed that she was surprised to see her and was mad as well.
Now she realized the reason why he wasn’t able to answer her messages and calls. That is probably the reason why he didn’t show up for lunch and why he wasn’t able to see her surprise.
The woman must be very important to him.
This made her heart ache. All the while she thought that Richard really cared for her,loved her. He said so himself.
But he was also secretive and never discussed much about his past.
Maybe she was only a diversion for him. Maybe he just got fond of her during the trying times with Luke. He was just sympathetic of her.
Hiyang hiya si Maya at awang awa din sa sarili nya.
“Bessie you’re early. Kakarating ko lang nandito ka na agad?”
She tried to avoid Emman but her bestfriend knows her.
“You cried? Bakit? May nangyari kay Doc Ricky? May ginawa sa’yo si Doc Ricky?”
“Wala Emman. Hindi ko siya nakita. Hindi ko rin nakausap.”
“Then why ganyan ang hitsura mo? Bessie may hindi ka sinasabi. Ano ba kasi yun? Kinakabahan naman ako sa’yo.”
“Emman sasama ako sa’yo sa Cebu.”
“Ha? Bakit Maya? Ano ba kasing nangyari?”
Then Maya didn’t have a choice but relayed to Emman what happened.
“Maya kinausap mo ba yun babae? Baka naman kasambahay yun ni Doc Ricky.” Emman tried to reason out.
“Emman alam ko yun nakita ko at hindi siya kasambahay ni Ricky. Ang ganda niya.”
“Baka naman pinsan o kapatid. Maya naman. Assumera ka na agad.”
“Hindi yun pinsan at wala namang kapatid si Ricky. Suot nya Emman yun regalo kong shirt ni Ricky.”
Maya cried openly. Emman pitied her friend.
Emman hugged her. He felt bad for his best friend. Maya had been through a lot already and all he wanted was for her to be happy.
He was so sure that Doc Ricky would bring her that very elusive happiness she deserves.
“Maaayos natin to bessie. Kailangan nyo lang mag-usap ni Doc Ricky. Kung totoo nga na girlfriend nya yun babae, alam ko naman na hindi maglilihim si Doc Ricky sa’yo. Magusap kayo ng maayos.”
“Wala na akong mukhang ihaharap sa kanya Emman.”
“Maya, baka may dahilan si Doc Ricky. Wag ka na munang mag-isip ng kung ano-ano.”
“Sasama ako sa’yo Emman. Kahit na ako na muna mag-alaga ng Lola mo.”
“Pero Maya paano ang work mo? Di naman pwedeng biglaan ka na lang aalis.”
“Tatawagan ko na lang sila Emman. Please ayoko na munang makita ako ni Ricky.”
“Palagi na lang ako ang iniiwan Emman. Si Simon tapos si Luke. Kaya pagbigyan mo na ako. Hindi ko na kakayanin na si Ricky ang unang magpapaalam. Aalis na lang ako Emman. Please. Kahit ngayon lang ako naman ang mauna. Mas masasaktan ako kapag sinabi niya na hindi na kami pwedeng magkita. Ayoko na siyang pahirapan. Napakabuti ni Ricky at alam kong ayaw nyang manakit ng tao pero ayaw ko rin siyang bigyan ng problema lalo na sa girlfriend nya.”
The she cried.
Emman helplessly hugged her.
“Maya tama na please. Gusto mo kausapin ko si Doc Ricky?”
“Emman isama mo na lang muna ako. Iisipin ko na lang ang gagawin ko pag nandun ako at malayo kay Ricky. Baka mag-away sila Emman. Baka sugurin ako dito.”
“You’re being paranoid Maya. Hinding hindi ka naman pababayaan ni Doc.”
Actually she is paranoid. She was humiliated when she professed her love to him and found out that there was a woman fuming mad hearing her say those words for Ricky.
She couldn’t think anymore and the easiest way is to go away for awhile.
As much as Emman doesn’t agree with Maya’s decision, he couldn’t also leave his bestfriend alone to face her problem.
He couldn’t postpone his trip either. He decided to bring Maya with him.
Maya asked him not to let anybody know her whereabouts as well.
The following morning, on a very early flight, the best friends, Maya and Emman were bound for Cebu.
“What are you doing here!?”
Richard woke up fuming mad to find Stephanie in his clothes, inside his bedroom.
It was already 11am when he woke up.
He abruptly sat up and was relieved to see that he is still wearing his clothes.
“Stephanie what the hell are you doing here!!!???”
“Ricky… you got drunk yesterday… I decided to help you, kami nina Doctor Ante, we brought you here.”
She was fumbling for words to say. She was also scared of Richard.
“And you slept here?”
“I was worried. Baka kung mapano ka?”
“Damn Stephanie! I know how your mind works and I’m pretty sure you planned this whole thing.”
“Please leave before I totally forget that you are Dr. Nick’s daughter. Please don’t embarrass your dad.”
Stephanie hurriedly changed her clothes and left Dr. Lim’s unit.
“Finally Doc you called! We’ve been looking for you yesterday at kanina rin. We’re so worried already. Are you sick or something?”
Liza was relieved to hear her boss on the other line.
“No Liza, I’m good now. I just had a hangover and maybe took the wrong medicine. I was just at my unit.”
“Oh so nagkita kayo ni Maya?”
“No Liza. I haven’t seen her but I badly need to talk to her. She waited for me yesterday that’s why I sent you the message. I was expecting her at South Curves but she didn’t show up. Ano bang sinabi nya. She must have been upset.”
“What message Doc? I didn’t receive any message from you.”
“I left my phone in my clinic and sent you a message using another phone. I asked you to tell Maya to follow me at South Curves.”
“Doc, I didn’t receive any message.”
“Oh my God! She must have been so upset. She prepared for my birthday yesterday. Liza kindly look for my phone. I need to call her using my phone. She doesn’t answer her landline and her cellphone is turned off. Maybe she doesn’t reply to unknown numbers. I need to read her messages.”
“Doc, she was here with Emman yesterday. They were so worried. They were looking for you. I told them to check your condo. Akala ko nagkita kayo.”
“No Liza. Tulog ako all throughout. I woke up a few minutes ago. It must have been something I drank.”
“Oh! Sige Doc, I’ll look for your phone and bring it to your unit right away.”
“Thank you Liza.”
“No problem Doc. And I wasn’t able to greet you yesterday so happy birthday and congratulations on your new position.”
“Thank you Liza.”
He smiled but it didn’t reach his eyes. He was worried. The moment Liza mentioned that Maya went to his unit, he was already anxious on what could have happened when Maya saw Stephanie.
He knows Maya and he knows her tendency to be inferior, to be insecure. He knows how less she thinks of herself.
Richard went to Maya and Emman’s apartment when he wasn’t able to contact her phone. It was turned off and he couldn’t contact their landline either.
His fear was heightened when he found their apartment locked.
“Alam nyo po ba kung saan pumunta sina Emman at Maya?” He asked the caretaker of the apartment who just lives beside the one Emman and Maya was renting.
“Dr. Lim hindi namin alam. Baka maagang umalis kasi nakalock na yan kanina eh. Baka nagbakasyon.”
“Alam nyo po ba kung taga saan ang mga kamag-anak ni Maya at Emman?”
“Ang alam ko isa lang ang kamag-anak ni Maya, yung kapatid nya sa Dubai. Si Emman nasa Canada na yun mga magulang nya. Bakit po Doc may problema ba?”
Aling Ibing, the caretaker of the apartment asked. She was curious why Doc Lim sounded so worried.
“Wala naman po pero hindi kasi sumasagot sa tawag ko si Maya. Si Emman naman wala rin akong contact. Alam nyo po ba kung paano ko sila mahahanap?”
“Doc baka naman masyado ka lang nagaalala. Baka may lakad lang yun dalawa at babalik mamayang hapon.”
That made sense. Maybe he was just overreacting.
He will just wait for them tonight.
He will clear things with Maya.
He will apologize to her and Emman for not showing up yesterday.
He will make it up to her.
For now, the only thing he could do is wait and pray that Maya’s turning her phone off on him is just because of a simple ‘tampo’ and not something serious.