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Page 15 of A Beautiful Mess (Beautiful Mess 1)

He walked up the stairs, listening to Olivia play piano, her voice soaring through the house. He could hear the pain and loss.

As Olivia sang, she thought about everyone she had lost in her life. She grieved for her parents, desperately hoping that she had made them proud. She grieved for the life she had before the accident. The life she couldn’t remember. She wasn’t sure if it was the loss of her parents that caused her so much pain or whether it was the loss of her life before that day. She tried so hard to remember her friends and family. She must have had friends. But who were they? And where were they now? Would they remember her? And why couldn’t she remember them? No. The only clue she had about her life before the accident came to her in the form of her dream. The green-eyed boy.

Olivia finished the song, keeping her eyes closed for a few seconds, trying to deal with her emotions after singing the song that reminded her so much of her parents and all the loss she had suffered throughout her life.

She took a deep, steadying breath before she heard a clapping sound in the doorway behind her. She screamed, jumping out of her chair and turning around. Alexander stood there, leaning against the doorway, a bright smile across his chiseled face. God, he looks good, Olivia said to herself, salivating over the man standing in front of her. No matter what, he definitely had good style, she thought, eyeing his crisp white polo shirt, plaid shorts and a pair of flip flops. I love a man who can wear flip flops, she smiled to herself.

“That was beautiful,” Alexander said, breaking Olivia’s stream of thought.

“How did you get in here?” She looked at him, crossing her arms defensively.

“I rang the doorbell and you didn’t answer. I was worried something had happened to you. Your door was unlocked, so I let myself in. Then I heard you playing the piano and singing. I just had to listen to you.”

He took a step forward, brushing a wayward strand of hair behind Olivia’s ear, his hand lingering, trying to keep his eyes trained on her face. Her legs looked amazing in the short navy and white striped sundress she wore that she accented with coral jewelry. He thought about how it would feel to have those long legs wrapped around him. Snapping out of his thoughts, he smiled. “You’re very talented, you know.”

She blushed at his words, staring down at her feet. “Thank you.” Olivia didn’t take compliments very well, unsure of the reason why. She knew she was talented. She had been singing and performing for as long as she could remember. It was the only thing that truly gave her joy.

“Look at me, Olivia,” Alexander demanded. Olivia snapped her head up, unsure of why she felt the need to obey him. But she did. “You are very talented.” He held her chin in place and stared at those big brown eyes of hers.

“Sorry I didn’t hear the doorbell. It’s hard to hear it up here,” Olivia said, interrupting the building tension that she started to feel all over her body, including between her legs. She turned around and folded the cover over the piano keys, needing to separate herself from Alexander before she invited him straight to her bedroom.

“Are you ready to go?” He held his hand out to her.

“Yes,” she replied, grabbing his hand.

Alexander marveled at how small her hand felt when enveloped in his. They walked out the front door and she turned to lock up. She felt Alexander come up behind her, mere inches away. He whispered in her ear, “Please always remember to lock your front door, even when you’re home. You can’t trust anyone.”

“I thought you said I could trust you.” Olivia turned to face him, remembering his words from a few nights ago. She smirked while she placed her keys in her purse.

“You probably shouldn’t, but I’d like you to.” He smiled a sort of mischievous smile, caressing Olivia’s forehead where her bruise was. She closed her eyes at the contact, enjoying the feeling of Alexander’s hands on her face. Why did a simple touch feel so good? Olivia didn’t want to think about what it would feel like if he were to touch other parts of her body. She thought she would explode.

Alexander stared down at Olivia, both of their breathing becoming heavier. He couldn’t understand the pull that woman had on him. He led a life of few distractions, avoiding all serious relationships, just like Olivia. It was hard to maintain total control when in a relationship. Instead, he would see a few women on occasion. Women who knew and understood his needs. But Olivia made him want to change his mind.

“Do you feel it, too?” he asked, bringing his hand to cup her chin, tilting her head up.

“Yes,” Olivia breathed, her voice husky. She was normally cool, calm, and collected. Around Alexander, she acted like a thirteen-year-old girl who had her first crush.

“Good,” he said, turning and walking down her front steps, opening the back door to the waiting Escalade. Olivia needed to take a minute to steady herself so that she didn’t trip over her feet. Once she was finally confident that she could climb down the stairs without causing serious bodily harm, she joined Alexander on the sidewalk and climbed into the car.

Martin sat at the driver’s seat and greeted Olivia as she entered the SUV. “Good afternoon, Miss Adler.”

“Hello, Martin.”

“Looking forward to the ball game this afternoon?”

“Yes, I am. Thank you.” The door opposite her opened and Alexander sat down, preparing for the short drive. He reached out and grabbed Olivia’s hand.

Her skin really was soft. Alexander could touch her all day. “You look beautiful today, Miss Adler,” he said softly as he stared into her eyes.

“Thank you, Mr. Burnham,” Olivia smirked, thinking about how much she wanted to scream his name.

Alexander brought Olivia’s hand to his lips and kissed it very gently. Her heart raced at the contact from his lips on her body. She stared into his eyes and realized she was falling for that man, as much as she didn’t want that to happen. That was bad. Very, very bad.

CHAPTER SIX

PUZZLE PIECES

OLIVIA and Alexander arrived at Beer Works after a longer than normal drive from Olivia’s house. She didn’t live far from Fenway Park, but with all the fans out in the streets for the game, it took a little longer than normal, which was to be expected on game day in Boston.

There was already a line outside, but the doorman saw Alexander and permitted the pair to enter, nodding a greeting to him. As they made their way through the industrial looking microbrewery, Alexander was greeted by more people, shaking hands with some, stopping to take pictures with others. He must have been more well-known than Olivia originally thought.

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