A/N This is a two-part story. Medyo sad to ha! Yan kasi nakikinig ako sa album ni Martin Nievera tapos kasali yan ‘Traces’ song na yan. Wag nyo akong isako. 😁✌
Again this is just a FanFICTION.
Fifteen years had passed after working together in the most successful teleserye of the top network in the Philippines, Richard Lim and Maya dela Rosa accidentally chanced upon each other on a train ride going to New York from Boston.
Maya visited her son who was studying at Harvard University. She now works as a nurse in a hospital in New York. She had been working as a nurse for 3 years already. She took medicine aside from nursing but she wasn’t able to finish it anymore and just opted to pursue a career as a nurse.
She lives in an apartment with her 6 cats and a Golden Retriever. Her son regularly visits her or if she has time off from her work, like now, she is the one visiting him.
She enjoys her laid back life, totally opposite from her life back in the Philippines. She missed it there but her heart can’t bear the pain of living in the same country with the same person who caused her so much pain years ago.
For the past fifteen years, Maya managed to keep distance from Richard Lim. She even retired from showbiz and moved to San Francisco just to avoid her onscreen partner.
No one knows the real reason why she left showbiz a few months after their successful series ended.
Even her close friends, colleagues and even family didn’t know the reason why.
She declined to do a movie project and the continuation of the successful series with him.
Her reason was that she wanted to pursue a different career path and she was tired of the showbiz life.
She left the country and managed to keep her life after showbiz very private.
Now she was with the man she managed to avoid for the past fifteen years.
He was already seated in the train when she saw him. Her heart somersaulted with the mere sight of him. He was reading a book and didn’t notice her. He still looked so handsome despite his age. He was now 63 and he still wears his glasses. He was a bit frail too.
Maya didn’t know how to approach him.The vacant seat beside him has that number on her train ticket and she didn’t have a choice but to sit beside him.
Since she saw him first it would also be proper to be the first to greet him.
“Richard…” She softly said as she carefully approached the train seat.
That caught his attention and he looked up at the mention of his name.
He was surprised, his chinky eyes suddenly got wide but could only blurt out…
Maya was expecting a hug from him or even a kiss on her cheek but he just remained seated and just gave her a smile.
Awkward silence permeated the air during the entire four hours train ride. They just occasionally talked about the weather, sports, current events and the political candidate in the US that time. It was campaign season and they made that part of their topic.
He didn’t ask anything about her personal life so she also didn’t ask him. Maybe he wasn’t interested anyway so she didn’t dwell on it.
He seemed sleepy and not in his best element. Maya was a bit hurt. Even though she was the one who avoided him, she expected a little excitement from him when they finally saw each other. She was excited upon seeing him but he didn’t look like he is.
In the remaining train ride, Maya pretended to sleep since she was ill at ease by Richard’s disinterest and lukewarm treatment of their accidental meeting. Eventually sleep caught up with her and she was unaware that she even leaned her head on his shoulder.
As Maya closed her eyes, Richard stole a glance at her and his heart constricted. Here was the woman he’d been searching for many years. She was right beside him now but he couldn’t even make himself hug her. The moment he heard her mention his name and when he saw her face, he wanted to give her a very tight hug, he wanted to kiss her.
She’s still very lovely despite her age of 48. And she still has that same effect on him.
Richard felt his eyes get misty. If he could only turn back time.
The train arrived and Richard carefully woke her up.
“Maya, our stop is here.”
She abruptly woke up and fixed her things.
She also combed her hair with her hands and tried to wipe her face with her hankie.
Richard just smiled. She was still very much the same Maya he used to know. Even her jittery ways were still there.
The passengers disembarked and Maya was already preparing to leave.
She noticed Richard seemed to be waiting for someone. He remained seated.
Then she saw a Chinese woman and a male nurse pushing a wheelchair towards their direction.
Her heart thumped faster as she now realized whom that wheelchair was for.
Then the male nurse and the woman assisted Richard to the wheelchair. Maya stood frozen unable to speak.
It was Richard who spoke before the nurse was able to push the wheelchair towards the train’s exit door.
“It was great seeing you again Maya. You take care.” Then he gave her his sad smile.
She just stood there. She was still unable to speak but her tears are now streaming down her cheeks.
She wasn’t even able to react to what he said or even smile back.
Richard was now being wheeled outside the train and towards the waiting ambulance.
It was then that Maya snapped back to her senses. Disregarding modesty and shame, she scrambled and ran towards Richard and without thinking anymore, she hugged him very tight. She could no longer contain her emotions.
The male nurse and the woman accompanying him just stepped back and allowed the scene before their eyes.
Richard held her tighter despite the difficulty of his position.
“I missed you so much partner. I missed you so much.” He whispered to her ear while his voice was also choking as he struggled to keep himself from tearing up.
Then he cupped her face and tried his best to wipe her tear-stained cheeks.
He tried to smile and tried to joke.
“Hey ngayon lang tayo nagkita tapos ganyan ka naman makaiyak. Kahit kailan, iyakin ka talaga partner.”
But it didn’t stop her from crying. She couldn’t utter anything and just hugged him again.
The woman accompanying Richard approached them now.
“Maya, Richard needs to go to the hospital now. Join me in my car. We will follow him there.”
Maya hesitantly disengaged from the hug and silently nodded. She allowed the nurse to assist Richard to the ambulance.
She just silently stood beside the woman.
Her emotions were in turmoil.
She couldn’t bear seeing him that way.