“Jose Mari! Sabel! Leah! Tulungan nyo ako. Si Ma’m Amor nyo!”
Leah, Abby’s former nanny, who now is Sunshine’s nanny was cleaning the baby bottles when she heard Manang Fe’s hysterical scream.
Earlier Amor was seen with her baby Sunshine at the veranda. The baby was cooing and Amor seemed happy playing with her.
Sunshine’s crib was also at the veranda. Amor and her baby usually stays at there every morning.
Manang Fe was instructing Sabel on the meals to be cooked.
Abby was busy playing with her dolls at the garden where Jose Mari was trimming the grass.
The day was normal and when Amor greeted everyone earlier, she seemed okay.
So when Manang Fe found her unconscious, she was screaming for help, calling Leah, Sabel and Jose Mari.
Good thing that the baby was asleep when Manang Fe saw her mom slumped on the cushioned seat.
She frantically dialled Carlo’s number who was having a meeting with his hotel staff.
Carlo’s daughter Abby was also so worried of her Tita Amor .
Jose Mari and Manang Fe rushed Amor to the hospital while Leah and Sabel were left with the kids.
Amor’s staff Roma Christie and Peter were no longer staying at her house, the house Philip provided her. They were back in the States to manage the chain of department stores Amor Powers owns.
Since Philip made sure that she and their baby had everything they need, Amor decided to donate all profits of her business to the foundation / charity groups she had been supporting.
After giving birth to Sunshine, Amor made sure to have everything in order, her investments, business. What’s important to her is their baby.
She only wished for a simple life with her daughter and her dad, even though she knew that he could never be with them.
Carlo, as requested by Philip, also lives with them together with his daughter Abby but he maintained a safe distance. He knows that his brother owns Amor Powers’ heart and all he could do was to be there for her.
“Mr. Asuncion, your sister-in-law is suffering from Postpartum depression. She hasn’t been eating lately then she lacks sleep too. Since wala yun husband nya, the people at home should give her extra attention. May kasama ba sya sa bahay?”
“Yes doc. Meron. Marami kami sa bahay. I didn’t notice any changes in her because she was always her jolly self at home. But i will bear in mind what you said. I’ll make sure to be attentive and to always have someone with her.”
“I think ayaw lang nya kayong mag-alala sa kanya. She pretended to be okay. Pero buti naman at we were able to detect it. You can bring her home tomorrow. Dito na muna sya tonight so she can rest. Who is taking care of her baby?”
“She has a nanny doc and we also have a very efficient and trusted household staff.”
“Okay Mr. Asuncion. May ipapainom lang sa kanyang gamot mamaya. You try to let her eat. Kung pwede samahan nyo na muna. She needs to regain her energy na rin. Bukas may kakausap sa kanya then she can go home.”
“Okay doc. Thank you.”
The doctor left Carlo alone while Amor was asleep.
As Carlo was staring at the sleeping form of the woman who once captured his heart he couldn’t help but feel sad for his twin, Philip.
He never realized that life had been so cruel to his brother.
Philip Tang and Carlo Tang had been separated when they turned five. Their mother Esmeralda who was married to one of the biggest syndicate leaders in Shanghai, China, Roberto Tang, planned on escaping her husband and bringing the twins with her to the Philippines. But on the day that they were about to leave, Roberto’s men intercepted their car and was able to retrieve one of the twins. That was Philip.
Their mom escaped with Carlo and they were helped by some kindhearted Filipinos in the embassy. They were able to go home to the Philippines safely.
But life in the Philippines wasn’t easy for Carlo and his mom. They struggled just to be able to survive. It was more difficult because they don’t have any relatives.
The friends who promised to help his mom, avoided them when they found out that she was hiding from her husband.
Esmeralda was a secretary of Roberto Tang in their business in the Philippines. Roberto Tang also owns some legitimate business to cover for his illegal ones. They stayed in the Philippines for 3 years but had to return to China to manage their main branch. When they needed to leave, Roberto brought Esmeralda to China because they were already having a baby. He accidentally got Esmeralda pregnant. But he loved her and even married her.
“Carlo, kumain ka na muna.” He was suddenly interrupted by Manang Fe who just arrived.
“Ay Manang, good evening. Mamaya na ako kakain. Busog pa ho ako.”
“Naku basta mamaya kumain ka. Ayoko ng mga nagkakasakit. Gagaya ka rin kay Amor na di kumakain. Eto tinola yan para sa kanya tapos ikaw ipinagluto ka ni Sabel ng beef steak kasi request mo yan kanina di ba?”
“Opo Manang. Ako na bahala dyan. Sasabayan ko na lang si Amor kumain pag gising nya.”
“Ano palang sabi ng doctor? Anong sakit nya?” Manang Fe was really worried.
“Stressed lang po dahil first time mommy. Pero okay naman daw po.”
“Ay mainam naman. Sobrang alala ko kanina.
“Eto pala, nakita ko to na hawak ni Amor kanina. Dinala ko na kasi baka importante at baka hanapin nya.” Manang Fe handed what seemed like a journal to Carlo.
“Salamat po Manang. Si Sunshine at si Abby po kumusta sila?”
“Okay sila. Wag kang mag-alala. Yun anak mo, hayun nagbabantay din sa pinsan nya. Gustong tulungan si Leah at Sabel. Ayan may dala akong gamit mo. May pamalit kang damit at may pang-opisina na rin. Di ko naman kasi alam na makakauwi na si Amor bukas. Si Joma nagpapark ng kotse. Si Jose Mari naman binilin ko na siya muna ang magbabantay sa bahay.”
“Salamat pero pwede na po kayong umuwi Manang. Mas kailangan kayo ng mga bata. Hindi ako kampante na wala kayo doon.”
“Pero pagod ka na sa trabaho. Pwede kang matulog dyan sa sofa tapos ako na lang magbabantay hanggang gumising si Amor.”
“Wag na po Manang. Kaya ko na po dito. Sige na po. Tawagan nyo na lang ako pagkauwi nyo.”
“Sige uuwi ako pero magbihis at kumain ka na muna. Hindi pwedeng iwanan si Amor dito habang nasa banyo ka.”
I went to my OB for the ultrasound this morning. Carlo accompanied me. We are having a baby girl Philip!
I’m sure you would be very happy. You’ve always wanted a girl.
I hope that you’re with me when the doctor gave that very happy news.
I miss you so much. Alam ko naman that we agreed to this set-up but if I could have it my way, I want you here. I want to see you getting excited with our baby. I know you are. I know that wherever you are, naiisip mo pa rin kami.
Your brother had been so helpful. I couldn’t thank him enough but I miss you so much.
I know we talked about this even before. I know we told each other to find happiness when the time comes to part ways. I’m trying Philip, for our baby, but I can’t, I can’t be happy without you.
Sorry for not keeping my promise to be strong on my own. The truth is I could feel that something is wrong. I tried to ask your brother but maybe you’ve instructed him not to say anything.
I really miss you and I pray that you would call me one day. I just need to hear your voice to know that you’re okay, you’re safe.
I didn’t sleep last night. Our baby girl is quite an acrobat. Maybe she wants to go out already. Maybe she wants to make it easier for her mom to look for her dad. She wants to see you. I want to see you.
I had a bad dream last night. I’m so worried. Please let me know that you’re okay. I won’t bother you with anything. I don’t even mind if you have a family already. Please just let me know that you’re okay.
I never found out when your birthday was but Carlo celebrated his today so Happy Birthday too to my Knight, My Hero, the one who gave me the greatest gift ever. I pray that all your wishes come true. I hope you are safe and happy.
I baked a cake for both of you.
Take care wherever you are.
Carlo brought me to the hospital this morning. He’s so paranoid. He thought I would be giving birth already so here I am at the hospital room waiting for my delivery schedule. I decided to undergo CS because the doctor said our baby is so big and it would be safer for both us.
Sunshine just slept tonight. I wanted to sleep too but I’m afraid that she’d wake up and cry. She’s bigger now and she reacts to my voice. She has your eyes.
Our baby will be Christened next week. I’m wondering who I’ll get as godparents. Of course her uncle Carlo will be her ninong. Your friend Verna? Can we get her too? She sent me flowers and visited me in the hospital when I gave birth. I just don’t know where to contact her.
Sunshine is growing up so fast. She’s my life. I can’t thank you enough for her.
You’re unfair. What happened? Did you get sick? May kalaban ka ba? I knew something was wrong before when you got shot but you made sure to keep everything a secret. I’m sure you also instructed Carlo not to tell me.
But why Philip?
All my hopes of letting you meet our baby girl is now gone.
I wasn’t even able to say my final goodbye.
I wasn’t even able to tell you how thankful I am for having known you.
I wasn’t able to show you how important you were, how special you were to me.
I wasn’t even able to tell you that I already love you the moment I found out that we were having a baby.
Yes Philip I love you, not Carlo, not anyone else.
All these time I was hoping that the day will come that I’ll be able to see you again.
I’ve been praying that kahit isang araw lang, we could be a complete family with our daughter.
Kaya pala di ako mapakali. This explains why I was always having those bad dreams, the gnawing pain in my stomach.
I saw the pictures at the funeral when I was looking for Carlo’s book at his office. Kung hindi ko pa nakita, hindi ko pa malalaman.
I will ask Carlo to allow me to visit you. I’ll bring our daughter. I’ll bring all her pictures.
You’re really unfair. You told me that you will never leave no matter what. You told me that though we’re apart I’ll just tell Carlo and he’ll be able to give my messages to you.
How could you do this?
You’re really unfair. Sana naging masama ka na lang sa’kin. Sana you showed me you didn’t care.
But Philip, I’ll miss you. I’ll miss you smile, your voice, your smell, your touch. I’ll miss everything about you. Nakakainis ka.
These were some of the entries of Amor’s journal which she was holding on to when Manang Fe found her unconscious at their veranda.
The last entry was written last night. It had smeared inkblots in it which meant that she had been crying while she wrote it.
He had been so careless to just leave the pictures in his table. He wouldn’t be able to forgive himself if something serious happened to Amor after finding about the pictures.
He remembered that Amor had been so quiet last night. He didn’t pry because he thought she was just tired taking care of Sunshine. Despite having a nanny, Amor is a hands-on mom.
He would have failed his brother if something happened to her and their baby.
When Philip surprised him with a visit several months ago, Carlo didn’t now what to feel but as they were together inside a room, not talking to each other, he heard his brother on the phone. He assumed that it was their father on the other end.
“Have you contacted your brother?”
“No pa. It’s better to leave him alone. Let’s not drag him into our lives anymore. He is living a peaceful life.
“I’m with Kevin, I’m taking care of something very important….
That meeting made him agree to his brother’s request of taking responsibility for Amor and their baby.
He is at this place again. He’s been visiting regularly for several months now.
Unknown to Amor and everyone else, this is Carlo’s reason for always visiting China.
But he prematurely visited this month.
After what happened to Amor, he knows that he must make a big decision for Amor and her baby’s sake. He must give her the family she needs, the happiness she deserves.
He needs to ask his permission.
He lit the candles he brought and sat on the grass beside the grave.