My Safe Refuge – 15
After talking to Ryan, Richard was totally affected. He got worried for both Maya and Luke. What if Ryan was right? What if Maya and Luke were indeed in danger? But Maya admitted that the guy was her husband. There was no hesitation, no trace of hostility between the two. Maya seemed wary and nervous but it could be because her secret had been found out by him. The guy seemed okay.
But maybe he couldn’t see clearly or think clearly. Maybe out of guilt for having an affair with James’ wife, he failed to see beyond what the guy is really like.
Maybe his judgement was clouded due to his surprise and anger on what he found out.
Trying so hard to set aside his pain, his anger, his pride, he called Maya’s phone. He just needs to check on her, hear her voice. Maybe he would be able to sense if she was okay or if Manang Fe’s fear, whom Ryan observed meant something.
After five rings his call was answered.
Then a male voice answered. “Hello! Good Morning! This is her husband, James Ventura. Sorry it took me so long to answer. I was taking a shower. Maya is still asleep. May I know who’s calling? ” James very well know that it was Richard who was calling for his name and face was flashing on Maya’s screen. He was staring at Maya while answering the phone in his fake polite manner.
“Oh I’m sorry. This is Richard Lim. Please just tell Maya that I called. I need to ask her something, something about Luke’s school.” Richard exerted all effort to talk calmly on the phone.
“Ah Richard Lim. Yun father of Luke’s classmate. I remember you. Sige I’ll tell Maya that you called pag gumising na sya. Napagod kasi yun kagabi. Alam mo na making up for the lost time.” Then he laughed which was intended to taunt Richard.
Richard’s blood rushed to his fists and he clenched his jaws. He also laughed but bitterly. “Yes James I understand. Sorry to bother both of you.”
“Oh no you’re not a bother at all. I know that malaking naitulong mo sa mag-ina ko. They both speak highly of you. And I’m thankful that you took care of them while wala ako dyan. You took care of them kahit di mo naman sila kaano-ano. Sabi nga ni Maya, marami kang tinutulungan at marami kang kaibigan. Thank you for being a very good friend to them Richard. O sige ill just inform Maya later. Bye.” Then James ended the call.
James is indeed cunning. He was able to make Richard believe that he was a very understanding husband to his wife. James’ intention to make Richard guilty was really effective. Now Richard felt like he was a very bad person having an affair with a married woman. What Richard didn’t know was James played everything so well and that he had a gun pointed at Maya while he was answering Richard’s call.
Instead of getting things cleared, the phone call made it worse for Richard.
He opened another bottle of wine. Though it’s just mid morning, he needed it to momentarily erase that conversation he just had with Maya’s husband.
“At tumawag pa talaga yun lalaki na yun ha Maya! Malakas ang loob. Ano kayang pwede kong gawin sa kanya?” James knew exactly how to make Maya be at his mercy. He would use Richard Lim.
“James nakikiusap ako. Tayo lang naman ang may problema. Wag ka nang mandamay ng mga wala namang kinalaman sa atin. Hindi naman ni Richard alam yun tungkol sa atin. Gagawin ko naman ang gusto mo wag mo lang siyang guguluhin. Nagmamakaawa ako James.” She was pleading.
“Wow! Ganyan ba siya kaimportante sa’yo para makiusap ka ng ganyan Maya? Nakakainsulto! Pero sige pagbibigyan kita. Mamaya tawagan mo at gawin mo ang lahat para mapaniwala siya na ginamit mo lang siya na pampalipas oras habang nagkakaproblema tayo. Do everything so he’ll stop bothering our family.”
“James di ko na lang sasagutin yun mga tawag nya. Titigil na lang yun.” She couldn’t find it in her heart to call Richard and further lie to him.
“Tatawagan mo sya at gagalitin mo sya para kalimutan ka na nya. Gagawin mo yan o ako mismo ang gagawa ng paraan para hinding hindi mo na sya makikitang buhay?”
“It’s your call Maya. It’s up to you. Call him or I’ll kill him.”
Richard was still drinking when his phone rang. Maya is calling him. As much as he hated her and he doesn’t want to hear her voice after talking to her husband, Richard answered the phone.
“Gusto ko lang magsorry sa paglilihim ko. Nagkaroon lang kami ng di pagkakaunawaan ng asawa ko na naayos naman namin na. Salamat sa pagiging mabuting kaibigan pero sana huli na ang paguusap nating eto. Gusto ko ring maayos ang pagsasama namin ni James at pangit naman kung patuloy akong magiging malapit sa’yo. Di ko makakalimutan yun birthday ni Nikki ng August 5 kasi napakasaya namin ni Luke. Pinasaya nyo kami ni Luke sa party na yun. Salamat Ricky. Bye.” Then she ended the call.
He didn’t have the chance to say anything.
Her call hurt and confused him as well.
August 5 is not Nikki’s birthday but it was actually the day they became a couple.
Something is indeed wrong.
Though he’s now nursing a severe headache because of the wine he drank, Richard wasted no time and took a shower, prepared himself and drove towards Maya’s home.
“Mommy I am sorry po.” Luke was embracing his mom. He was crying.
“Anak wala kang kasalanan. Don’t be sorry. Just follow what your father tells you para wag ka nyang sasaktan. You father is good kaya lang sinira ng drugs yun mind nya that’s why he’s hurting us. He is not aware of it anak.” Maya tried to make Luke understand his father.
“Pero mommy kung hindi ako bumili ng ice crea hindi ako makikita ni dad, hindi sana tayo nandito. Sana masaya pa rin tayo kasama sina Tito Richard at Nikki. Sana wala ka pong wound dyan sa face mo. Sana hindi ka po nahihirapan now.” The boy hugged his mom tighter and cried louder.
James left them inside his condo, the place where he transferred when Maya and Luke left him. James sold their house and bought the condo.
He left them but he brought their cellphones and he locked his unit. He threatened Maya that if she tries to do something silly, he could easily ask his friends to hurt Richard or his family especially his daughter, Nikki.
Maya wouldn’t risk it. She is aware of how crazy James could get.
Now she needs to focus on Luke first. She must ensure Luke’s safety even though it meant following everything James asks her to do. She will try her best to understand James for the meantime while she had no one to rescue her.
Maybe just like when Rafi and Charlie saved her and Luke a few years ago, an angel would again be sent by God to save them before it’s too late.
Yes. Maya still believed in miracles and answered prayers.
She is praying that Richard would be able to forgive her.
She is praying that James would stop beating her and their son.
She is praying that all these will come to an end…soon, before it’s too late.