Teaser – Chapter 16 to Chapter 19

Chapter 16

Pumasok si Mommy sa kwarto ko. Umupo siya sa gilid ng kama ko at hinagkan ako.

“Nathalie.. I’m so sorry.. Hindi ko alam na nasasakal ka na pala sa mga nangyayari.. tama ka, siguro, its time to clear things up.”

At yun nga, nag-usap kami ni Mommy tungkol dun. Humingi siya nang tawad. Pagkatapos ng araw na yun, my parents gave some time to be with me. Kahit busy sila, may nilalaan na talaga silang oras para sakin. And that really felt good. 

Walang may alam kung san talaga pumunta si Gio. Even his parents. Natataranta na talaga yung parents niya kung san siya hahanapin. Wala rin akong ideya kung san lugar siya napadpad. He didn’t even bother to call.

I went to college sa isa sa mga prestigious na eskwelahan sa lugar namin. Cedric? Well, magkasama kami sa school. He tried to court me, pero I turned him down-in a good way. I wasn’t ready to enter any relationship.

Sobrang miss na miss ko si Gio nang mga panahong yun. And the only way na alam kong makakalimutan ko siya was by studying hard. Sinubsob ko yung sarili ko sa pag-aaral. And what older people say, kung ano ang iyong itinanim, yun din yung iyong aanihin. I graduated from the course I chose to pursue.. And now, I’m the vice president of our own company.

If I could only turn back the time…. if only…

 


Chapter 17

 

“Nathalie!!!”

Tinago ko yung necklace sa loob ng shirt ko. Past is past. Wala na akong magagawa dun. I’m still hoping na one day I’ll see him again.

“Mom? Why?”

“Tumawag si Halie. She can’t go to a party with the other company. So, she’s requesting you to fill it up for her.”

“Pero Ma? I hate parties.”

“Sige na, go. Ayokong mag back out yang kompanyang yan. It’s really important.”

“Ma? It’s late.”

“Ikaw na bata ka, simula ng mag college ka, nawalan ka na ng social life. Magbihis ka na dun.”

“Mom?”

“Sige na..”

I went back to my room at naghanap ng magandang damit na pwedeng suotin sa party. Yup, simula ng mag college ako, hindi ako nag-aaliw aliw ng sarili ko. Hindi ako dumadalo sa mga party pag hindi naman masyadong importante. Siguro kasi, nawalan lang talaga ako ng mga gana diyan.

Walang driver sa bahay nun, and too bad. Color coding. So I have to ride a taxi going to the venue.

Bumaba ako at pumasok sa convention hall. Hindi ko kakilala kung sino ang mga tao dun. I just smiled at them and made my way across the hall.

Syempre, I interacted with them. In business, importante talaga ang interaction.

“Good evening. I’m from Hanson Company.”

That voice.

I know that voice. Napatigil ako sa kinatatayuan ko. I felt my tears filled my eyes. Alam ko kung bakit. Gusto kong lumingon to know kung siya nga talaga yun. Pero ewan ko ba at natatakot ako. Inipon ko yung guts ko and looked behind me.

And there he is, standing right before my very eyes. Yeah. Marami na ang nag change sa kanya. I really couldn’t take my eyes off on him. I smiled to myself. Physically, marami ang nagbago sa knya. He grew taller. Mas gumwapo. Yung hairstyle iba na rin. Dati messy, ngayon, neat.

Gio.

He smiled to me. Then he headed straight towards me.

“Hi.” he said smiling.

I couldn’t find my voice. I just smiled at him while wiping my tears at my eyes. Avoiding his melting gaze. Hindi ko alam kung anong gagawin ko.

Hindi kami gaanong nag-usap. Marami akong tanong na gustong itanong sa kanya. Pero hindi ko alam kung saan magsisimula.

Hindi ko na nakayanan kaya maaga akong umalis. I said goodbye to all the people around there. Mabilis akong sumakay ng elevator at naglakad papunta sa entrance ng hotel.

“Nathalie! Nathalie! Nathalie, wait!!”

Lumingon ako at ngumiti.

“Y-yes?”

“Are you going home right now?”

“Yeah.”

“Do you have a car?”

“W-wala..sakay lang ako ng taxi.. S-sige.. got to go.”

Tumalikod na ako nun and started to walk when he grabbed my right hand.

“I was just thinking, if you’d like to.. you know.. chat for awhile.. away from this place.” he said.

I looked at him…

“S-sure.” I said.

I followed him to his car. He opened the door for me. Pumasok ako and he walked to the driver’s seat. Awkward silence.

“San tayo?”

I think hinde parin nagbabago ang ugali niya. Siya na nga etong nag invite sakin na maglibot-libot tapos ako pa yung tatanungin kung san ppnta?

“You invited me.. so bahala ka kung saan..”

He nodded and continued driving. I looked at him and smiled again. Napatigil siya dun sa Egoz Bay.

Bumaba kami. Umupo kami dun sa bench… kaharap nun eh dagat. Malakas ang hangin and malamig. Nahalata ko lang? tuwing mag-uusap kami ng matino, bakit palageng malapit sa dagat?

“Alam kong marami kang gustong itanong.. so.. umpisahan mo na..”


Chapter 18

Hindi ko alam kung san ako magsisimula.. Hindi ko alam kung ano ba talaga ang dapat kong itanong.

Gulong-gulo yung isip ko nun. Until..

“Well, siguro naguguluhan ka pa. Ikekwento ko nalang sa iyo.. After that night, maaga akong umalis papunta sa interntional airport. Hindi alam nina Mommy na aalis ako. Plinano ko talaga yun. I was accepted as a scholar sa Princeton. Buti nalang at tinanggap nila yung application ko. That was another reason for me to get out from this place. When i was there, i became a working student. Kahit papano, nakatapos din ako. I came back here dahil nagawa ko na yung dapat kong gawin.”

I looked at him na parang nagtatanong, bakit niya pa kelangang gawin yun, eh mayaman naman sila..

“I know what you’re thinking. Ayokong sabihin ng mga tao na naging successful lang naman ako, becuz my parents are rich. Na naging successful lang naman ako kasi nasa likod ko yung mga parents ko.”

Tumahimik siya at tumingala sa langit. Ina absorb pa ng brain ko yung mga sinabi niya. Eto na naman yung mga luha ko sa mata..

“B-bakit ka umalis?”Ito yung tanong na gustong-gusto kong masagot niya.

Ngumit siya at yumuko.

“Well, there’s this girl who wished na sana maglaho na daw ako sa buhay niya. Sabi niya.. magiging masaya daw siya pag wala ang taong yun. Sabi niya, she can compare herself to a princess pag wala na yung enemy na yun. She wanted freedom, so I gave it to her.” he paused and and smiled again. “M-mali ba yung umalis ka kasi gusto mong maging maligaya yung tanong mahal mo? Mali ba yung ginawa mo yung akala mong makakapagpasaya sa kanya? I really loved that girl so much that’s why I let go of her.”

Pumatak yung mga luha sa mata ko. Pakiramdam ko eh parang squinisqueeze yung puso ko sa mga sinasabi niya.

“You never even tried to hear my side!” sabi ko habang umiiyak sa kanya.

Tumayo siya at ngumiti.

“Uwi na kita.”

Pumunta siya sa kotse at binuksan ang pinto. Pumasok ako ng walang tanong at pinahidan ang mga luha ko.

Tahimik na tahimik kami sa kotse. Alam ko na namumula na yung mga mata ko ngayon.

Nang makarating kami sa bahay. Mabilis akong bumaba. Bumaba siya para buksan ang pinto, pero nauna na ako.

Wala akong sinabi sa kanya ng papasok na ako sa bahay. I just heard him say..

“I really hate it when I see you cry.”

Lumingon ako.

“That really makes me guilty. Everytime we talk seriously, umiiyak ka. I don’t want to think na pinapaiyak kita. I’m sorry.”

He said at sumakay na kaagad sa kotse niya. Naiwan akong nakatayo dun sa labas ng bahay. I wasn’t sure about what i saw. Pero i think I saw tears filling his eyes.


Chapter 19

 

Naiwan akong nakatayo dun sa labas ng bahay? Was that really tears? Marami nga ang nagbago sa kanya, pero there’s this one thing parin na hindi nagbabago.

His eyes.

Still cold as the ice and still warm as the sun. Gulo ko no? Pero kapag nagkaharap kayo ng lalaking yun, ganito din ang masasabi niyo.

Above those questions, meron paring isang tanong na nananatili sa puso at isipan ko.

Does he still feel the same way about me just like he felt four years ago?

I still hope.

Maaga akong nagising this morning. Hindi kasi ako nakatulog ng mabuti last night. We ate breakfast at the garden.

“I just finished fixing my things at the car.”

“Do you really have to go?”

“Yeah. I think this is the right time to be more independent. Don’t worry, I’ll be alright.” I said smiling sweetly. She let out a sigh and continued eating.

“I heard he’s back.” she said seriously.

Natigilan ako at ngumiti.

“Yeah.” I said in a small voice.

“Nagkita naba kayo?”

“Yep.”

“Nag-usap ba kayo ng matino?”

“Yes.” I said letting out a heavy breath. “We talked about his stay in the States.”

“Yun lang?”

“Yeah.”

Tumahimik naman kagad si Mommy, kaya hindi talaga kami nagtagal sa topic na yun. After that, umalis na kaagad ako at pumunta sa new condo unit ko. Aayusin ko pa yun at pagagandahin.

7:11 pm, Condo Unit

I’m working out on the finishing touches of my new home, when I heard a knock at my door. Malalakas na katok at mabibilis.

“Natahlie!! Nathalie!!! Open the door!!”

Wait. Gio? I mean, pano makakabot yung lalaking yun dito? Wala pa naman akong pinagssbihan na dito na ako magstestay starting tomorrow.

“Gio…”

Seeing his reaction, I mentally scanned my appearance. Naka white ako na sleeveless and nakashorts ng pagkaikli-ikli. Tapos meron pang mga pinta sa mukha ko. I was like oh gosh.

“I-im sorry. Come in.. maliligo lang ako..” I said habang natataranta kung anong gagawin.

Mabilis akong dumiretso sa bathroom sa kwarto ko. Umupo naman siya sa couch dun sa living room.Pagkatapos kong maligo, luamabs na kaagad ako. Pero of course, pinalitan ko na yung damit ko, medyo mahaba-haba na siya.

“Ano nga pala ang rason at napadaan ka dito?”

“Well, ano kasi…”

“Nga pala, kumain kna?”

“H-hinde pa..”

“Since nakaluto na ako, dito ka nalang kumain ng dinner.”

“Really?! Ehermm.. I mean, marunong ka ng magluto?”

“Yes..”

“You mean?”

“Time can change people.” I said smiling.

“Yeah, indeed.”

Buti nalang, nakapagluto ako. Kasi, hindi rin naman kami makakalabas kung sakasakali.. Umuulan ng malakas sa labas at bumabaha pa daw sabi sa news. I wonder kung pano nakaabot itong si Gio dito sa lugar ko.

“What brought you here..”

“K-kasi.. ano.. hmm.. my parents and I were talking… about the..”

“About?”

“Hmm.. about… you..”

“And what was about me?”

“Well… I was really shock… when they told me.. na..” huminga siya ng malalim. “NBSB ka?”

Napangiti ako.

“NBSB? Well, yeah.. wala namang masama dun e..”

“P-pero bakit?”

“Well, siguro.. kasi..” napatigil ako.

I looked at him. He’s still waiting for an answer.

“Well, there’s this guy kasi who told me he loved me. But then he left without even saying goodbye to me.. he left without even giving me a chance to say what I really wanted to say.. Siguro kasi, my heart went with him. Hindi ko makuha-kuha yung puso ko kasi sobrang layo niya and wala akong idea kung sang lupalop ng mundo niya dinala ang puso ko. But then he came back. And..I think.. for the first time in that 4 years, I felt my heart thumping again..”

Tumutulo na yung mga luha ko nung oras na yun… He looked at me and wiped my tears..

“So you waited for him?” he said smiling.

“Sa tingin mo?”

“Ewan..” ngumiti na naman siya.

Eto talaga o… asar parin hanggang ngayon..

“I guess I couldn’t go home.”

“And why is that?”

“See the rain? I couldn’t drive when the rain’s that heavy and thick.”

“And what are you trying to say?”

“If it’s alright with you, can I sleep here for the night? I mean.. wala naman akong gagawing masama sa iyo..”

“I know..”

“So, its okay with ya?”

“Yeah..”I said smiling..

Nung gabi na, we were sitting at the living room habang nanonood ng tv.

“My dad’s planning na ikasal tayo since wala ka daw bf and since I’m not in a relationship din daw.”

“Ano sabi mo..?”

“Sabi ko, I still have to talk with you. I told him na isa yun sa mga rason kung bakit ako umalis noon. Ayokong umalis ulit dahil dun.”

“Pero kung ikaw ang papipiliin? Ayos lang ba sa iyo?”

“Well, yeah. Ayos lang naman sakin. Ikaw yung iniisip ko.”

“I think I should agree with that.”

 

“Huh? I-I mean.. akala ko ba..”

“Well, naisip ko, sa apat na taon na wala ka, sobrang boring ng buhay ko. Sobrang wala.. and when you came back.. parang everything went  multi-colored again..dun ko naisip na, malalaman mo lang pala yung importance ng tao pag wala na siya..”

“Teka, teka.. so you mean?”

“I don’t want to say it.” I said and pouted.

“Okay, sa loob ng four years na yun, ikaw lang ang minahal ko.. kaya naman,I really agree sa marriage na pinaplano nila.. and…”

“What did you say?”

“Agree ako sa marriage thing na to.”

“No, no. before that.”

“Na mahal parin kita?”

“You mean? You still feel the same way about me just like you did four years ago?”

“Yeah..” he said in a small voice. Namumula siya o.

I laughed loudly sa sinabi niya.

“What?”

I laughed again as tears fill my eyes. Am I Cinderella? Or Snow White to have this good story in life and love?

He smiled. Gets niya kung bakit ako tumawa.

“Lika nga dito..”

He pulled me close to his body and hugged me.. and before I knew it, our lips met.

Siguro pinaglayo kami ng oras, lugar at panahon. Pero kahit ganun, we’re glad to find out na mahal parin namin yung isa’t-isa. Siguro hindi naging maganda ang mga unang bese ng pagsasama namin noong bata pa kami..Siguro kasi yung mga panunukso niya e sobra na at nasasaktan na ako.

Pero dahil sa mga panunukso na yun, mas nakilala namin yung isa’t-isa. And now, I’m really happy to lie beside him in one bed.. Yup, kasal na kami. Mahirap paniwalaan pero the guy I once thought na kontrabida ng storya ko e naging prince pa ng fairy tale ko.

“Hindi talaga ako makapaniwala na after all those years, ako lang naman pala..”

“Hahaha… you know what? Gusto ko dalawa yung anak natin.. then dun tayo titira sa El Grande.. tapos… our son will be named Lee Dustin… pag girl naman, Francesca.. then her nickname will be Cheska..”

He laughed.

“Pano tayo magkakaroon niyan if hindi pa natin sisimulan?”

There it is again.. he’s really a teaser.. sa mga ngiti niya, sa mga pinagsasabi niya.. and the way he moves..You can always describe him as a teaser. And I love him for being that. Marami pa sigurong mangyayari samin… pero alam kong makakaya namin yun.. as long as we’re always together… And just like what the saying says, the best part of life is having someone worth waiting for.

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