Disclainer : I don't own anyone :D

Chapter 8 - The history behind the smiles

Lys was sitting on her bed and running through some things she brought along with her

At the hotel, the girls were sitting around in their suite. Haley was rummaging through her clothes as she tried to plan which top goes which what jeans and so on. Riley was sitting down on the floor and writing in her notebook on top of the coffee table. Lys was sitting outside in the balcony as she indulged in composing. Rebecca was watching the latest sports news on the tube as she lazily sat on the couch.

Knock! Knock!

"Riley, get the door!" Rebecca, Lys and Haley screamed all at the same time as if it had been choreographed.

"Why me?" Riley reacted.

The three knew the answer all too well. "You're the youngest. Go!" they all said at the same time.

Riley gave a slight pout and 'hmph' before actually standing up from her comfortable seat on the floor and walking over to the door. She peeked into the peephole and saw that their Uncle Dave was standing outside in his gym clothes. It was, after all, quite early in the morning. "Hi, Uncle Dave!" Riley greeted with a smile after she swung the door open.

"Morning, Riley!" Dave replied as she gave the girl a kiss on the forehead. "How were your nights?" he asked.

"Well…" Haley started as she still threw some of her clothes around the room.

"…It was okay… Nice beds…" Rebecca said, not taking her eyes off the tube.

"…And it was really interesting the way Lys rolled around on her bed like a potato…" Riley joked. All of them laughed, but the witty comment never came from the one who was the joke of the moment.

The youngest Bautista looked at Lys who was still outside and humming and said, "Lys! That was your cue for a witty comment!"

Lys turned her head around and said, "Wha-?"

"…Twin's off in dreamland again." Rebecca said.

"Sorry…" Lys said. "Just got inspiration so… working on it before it goes kapoof, y'know?" She stood up and walked inside. After plopping down on the armchair, she asked, "Dare I ask what was Riley's crazy joke?"

All of them shook their heads no except for Riley. Lys smirked at Riley, "Sorry, sis, majority rules."

"Aaaw, shucks." Riley said and pouted.

Dave laughed at all their silly antics: Haley mercilessly scattering her clothes all over the room, Riley pulling jokes endlessly, Lys teasing her little sister and Rebecca swatting Haley's head for throwing a crop top on her head. "Well, seeing as it is that you're all in a good mood, I have something that will put you in a better mood!" he said as he sat on the couch and put the package he was holding onto his lap.

"Oooh. What is it, Uncle Dave?" All four chorused at the same time as they got closer. Haley leaned on the backboard of the couch. Riley sat on the floor and places her arms on the couch with her chin on top of it. Rebecca inched closer. Lys sat on the coffee table in front of Dave.

He chuckled at their synchronization. "Well, I got a package from your dad this morning… Said he wanted you guys to get it as soon as possible. Beats me what's in it. It could be a bomb for all I know!" he said.

"Ooh! Goodie! Something from daddy!" Haley squealed. The rest of the Bautista girls simply smiled. "Let's open it!" Haley squealed again.

Slowly, but surely, Dave peeled the white packaging paper off the box. It was a pretty small box. Well, not exaggerated small, but it was just about the size of a normal notebook. The paper was now off and Dave peeled the packaging tape off, too. He opened the box slowly until it was fully opened and the contents were very much in view.

"Ooh! Lookie! Daddy sent my favorite earrings!" Haley said as she got the box with the earrings their parents gave her on her 18th birthday.

"Cool! Dad sent me… my alarm clock?" Rebecca said, astounded. On the back of the clock there was a post-it that said, 'You need to wake up earlier, Becca. You're the eldest. Love, Mom and Dad.' All of them broke out in a fit of giggles except for Rebecca who still sat there shocked.

"It's my notebook full of essays and stories!" Riley screamed as she grabbed the small old notebook from the box.

"Hey! Papa sent the CDs of my compositions!" Lys squealed as she grabbed about three CDs that had no names except for weird designs on the cover.

They were all fussing about their own little treasures that were sent by their father. So much, that they didn't notice what was at the bottom of the box. Dave noticed it and asked, "What's this?" as he held up a notebook, roughly the size of his hand. The cover was black felt with lots of random designs on it. In the middle, 'Bautista' was written in colorful bold letters.

Haley sat on the coffee table beside Lys. "I remember that!" she said with a smile.

Lys nodded. "We all signed it after Riley graduated from college… Brings back so many memories."

Rebecca and Riley nodded. "It's the old autograph book!" Rebecca stated.

"Let's read it!" Riley said. The five of them sat on the couch and read the contents of the autograph book as they let out a giggle and laugh at what they wrote every now and then. Rebecca wrote in blue pen, Lys in green, Haley in pink and Riley in purple…

Name: Rebecca Beatrice Bautista

Age: 27 (older by 4.25 minutes) 'lyz: haha. very funny, becca, very funny. o.0

School (Elementary/High School): ICA

College: De La Salle University

Course: Mass Comm. (cum laude)

Extras: military training, summer courses in Psychology

Achievements: basketball varsity player (college & HS), b-ball MVP

Interests: guitar, basketball, cooking

Pets: Shih Tzu (Joey!)

Fave Food: Italian

Fave Shows: Crime & Suspense, NBA/PBA, reality shows

Good Stuff About You: sporty, good big sis 'lyz: yeah right! lmao. :))

Bad Stuff About You: uhm… I dunno. Let my sis's answer this one. 'lyz: leaves the TV on! stays up too late! 'haley: oversleeps. Boyish! 'riley: mood swings… possessive. competitive. This is how much my sisters love me. 'smiles' 'lyzhalesrile: yeah right! :))

Name: Haley Dominique Bautista

Age: 25 'lyzrile: but you know what? she looks much older!

School (Elementary/High School): ICA

College: University of Santo Tomas

Course: HRM (magna cum laude)

Extras: military training, summer courses in Modeling

Achievements: volleyball varsity player (college & HS), Team Captain (2 yrs.), MVP (College -1 yr.), prom queen

Interests: bass guitar, volleyball, modeling, photography, fictional books

Pets: Yorkie (Ginger!) 'lyz: sounds like a food condiment…giggles.

Fave Food: Italian

Fave Shows: American Idol, reality shows

Good Stuff About You: fashionable

Bad Stuff About You: slaps hard, competitive, too kikay, overshops, spends too long in the bathroom


Name: Lys Carissa Bautista

Age: 27 (younger by 4.25 minutes) 'becca:ya got that damn right! lol.

School (Elementary/High School): ICA

College: University of the Philippines

Course: AB-Psych (suma cum laude), Law (10th placer in bar exam) I am so modest. I know. 'haley: we all know that!

Extras: military training, summer courses in Theatre Arts

Achievements: cheerleader (12 yrs. HS-Coll.), Best in English (HS)

Interests: piano, drama, dance, photography, modeling, surreal books

Pets: Beagle (DD.) it stands for double-dutch. 'rile: she's the only one who named her dog after an ice cream flavor. Haha. Very funny, riley.

Fave Food: everything, actually. lmao. 'haley: which is why you are fat! 'lyz pouts'

Fave Shows: CSI, Harry Potter, Disney

Good Stuff About You: organized

Bad Stuff About You: let's see… uhm. Guys, a li'l help? 'becca: she is E.M.O! 'haley: she plays her music way too loud! OC much, too! And she's so insecure! Hey! You meanie! 'riley: sarcastic! She has mood swings like becca! she dissects technology… seriously! 'becca: and she's competitive, too! 'haley: an—okay, okay, shutting 'em up now! lmao.

Name: Riley Marie Bautista

Age: 23

School (Elementary/High School): ICA

College: Ateneo de Manila University

Course: Maj. – Veterinary Studies, Min. – Journalism

Extras: military training, summer courses in Journalism

Achievements: college band (Best Drummer – 2 yrs.), Philippine Star Newspaper Jr. Writer (HS- now: regular column)

Interests: drums, writing stories, reads fictional books

Pets: Pug (Malka)

Fave Food: none specific, really

Fave Shows: reality shows, myx, thriller/scary movies 'haley: and she drags me along! argh!

Good Stuff About You: creative

Bad Stuff About You: I—'lyz: she sings off-key in the shower! I am now laughing. Haha, lys. Just 'cause you sing. 'haley: she is so insecure! I swear! She also has a massive inferiority complex! Hey! I do no—'becca: yeah you do! She also dissects technology like lyz! And she is tooooo dependent on music! Haha, guys. Yeah, you make me laugh. 'beccalyzhales: we wuv you, riri!

"The times and the moments we will never take for granted, all the laughter and the tears." Rebecca recalled the feeling, the bond between them was stronger than diamond, even more unbreakable than the strongest metal itself.

"Unforgettable, treasured, and forever etched in my heart." Lys smiled so genuinely.

"Never will I regret, never will we bury memories so dear." Haley felt happiness and couldn't help but cry.

"These are the long days, the slow hours, the eternal minutes, and the unforgettable seconds that will never be forgotten." Riley thought. The eldest of the sisters closed the book of memoirs.

Now, it was time to make new memories. Ones which will also be cherished and ones that will make life even more worth it.

"So who's up for a few burgers?" Dave shouted from where he sat.

"I AM!" They all screamed and laughed.

"We better hurry then." Dave stood up and walked to the door as the four ran happily after him.

I know. I know. I am at fault. HEHE. This was thanks to veracruzortongal. actually, there was a time that I wanted to stop writing because I felt I wasn't good enough but i read some of my own crazy quotes and thought... "Hypocrite." which I will never be so. Here it is.