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Page 38 of A Beautiful Mess (Beautiful Mess 1)

It didn’t look like a typical shrink’s office. It was large with floor-to-ceiling windows, black tile floor, and several comfortable white couches with green, orange, and yellow accent pillows. Dr. Greenstein had great decorating style.

She sat at an oversized white chair, motioning for Olivia to have a seat on the couch in front of her. “So, what brings you back to me, Olivia?”

“Well, I figured it was time.” She laughed.

Dr. Greenstein picked up a notepad and a pen, looked at her patient, and said, “Do you think? What was the reason for you calling me? It’s been quite a while.”

“Yeah. Several years. I know.”

“So, tell me. What’s going on?”

“Well, I met this guy.” Olivia smiled as she proceeded to give Dr. Greenstein a general overview of what had been going on in her life recently. About how she would refuse to get into a relationship with anyone, but would hook up on occasion. She talked about Simon and how she met Alexander. She mentioned that she asked him to stay over the previous night.

“And how do you feel about that?”

She hated that question and her doctor knew it. “I don’t know how I feel about it.” Olivia glared.

“Okay, okay. Sorry. But we need to discuss your feelings, Olivia. What was going through your mind when you asked him to stay over? You’ve said that you never let guys stay over your place. If they were invited over, you would kick them out after sex. So, why Alexander?”

“Hold on. We haven’t had sex.”

“Okay. So you haven’t been intimate yet.”

“I didn’t say that,” she interrupted the doctor. “I mean, we’ve done some things, just haven’t had sex yet.”

“Hmmm… And do you think that’s why you don’t have a problem with him staying over?”

“No. I mean, I want to have sex with him. But, I don’t know. We seem to be taking our time and I’m actually enjoying it. It’s weird. Normally I just want to jump straight to sex so I can kick the guy out of my bed.” Olivia looked down as she fidgeted with her skirt. She hated talking about her sexual habits with her doctor. Unfortunately, it was necessary for her to do so.

“Well, the act of sex is an intimate act, but you haven’t made it so. When you jump right into things, you skip over the act of forming a bond with another individual. You use sex as a coping mechanism while, at the same time, keeping your subjects at arm’s length so that you don’t get attached. What is it about Alexander?”

Olivia looked up and met the doctor’s eyes. “I don’t know. Before me, he would kind of do the same thing I did, but I think his reasons are vastly different from mine. He doesn’t have these attachment issues like I know I do. But now, I don’t know. He said he wants more with me. He’s sweet. He cares about me. He’s always trying to protect me. He’s incredibly sensual.” Olivia’s face flamed just thinking about some of the things he had said. “He’s very gifted with words.” That was the best way she could think to say he liked to talk dirty.

A smile crept across Dr. Greenstein’s face. “So he’s prolonging the seduction and you’re enjoying it.”

“Yes. Definitely.” She was absolutely enjoying every fantastic minute.

“Olivia,” the doctor said, removing her reading glasses from her face. “You, unfortunately, had your parents taken from you at such a young age. You never had the means to learn how to form a relationship with someone. You were so traumatized by that event that you pushed everyone away. When you were older and discovered sex, you wanted that without the emotional attachment. Now, you’re experiencing a slow seduction for the first time. Most of us have experienced that early on in our development. Granted, early on, it’s not necessarily about sex. But later in life, our bodies crave that release, so it becomes a slow seduction, which can sometimes last years before the actual act of intercourse.

“You need to embrace this. Enjoy it. Go for the ride and face your fears. Don’t worry about whether Alexander will ever leave you or be taken from you. We can’t control those things. But you can control your actions. If you want to have a meaningful relationship with this man, and it sounds like you do, don’t push him away. Let him in. You’re a beautiful, intelligent young woman. Let him fall in love with you. And keep yourself open to fall in love with him in return.”

Olivia looked down. That woman was good. She was definitely worth every penny. Dr. Greenstein glanced at her watch. “Oh, I’m sorry, dear. We’re out of time for today. We’ll pick up again on Tuesday.” She led Olivia toward her office door before giving her a gentle hug. “It’s great to see you again, Olivia.”

She turned to leave the office and really put some thought into what the doctor said. I’ll tell her about my dreams next time, Olivia thought to herself.

~~~~~~~~~~

Shortly after she finished eating lunch that afternoon, Olivia heard a gentle knock on her door. Looking out the peephole, her heart fluttered when she saw Alexander standing there, a sexy smirk on his face.

She quickly opened the door and he swept her into his embrace. Olivia had missed that man and she had only been away from him for a few hours. “Miss me, Love?”

“You have no idea,” she replied into his chest. He pulled back, giving her a chaste kiss on her mouth. “My security team is here to install your system.”

“And I’m such a high profile client that the big boss man had to come supervise?” Olivia batted her eyelashes at Alexander.

He curved toward her, softly saying, “You are Burnham and Associates’ number one priority, Miss Adler.” He stepped aside to allow two gentlemen in the house to install the state-of-the-art security system Alexander had selected.

“Olivia, this is Arnold and Chase. They’ll be rewiring your house for this system. It may take a few hours. Just let them know if you have any concerns. When they’re done, they’ll walk you through how to program and use it. They’re also going to change your front door so that it’s a punch-pad lock instead of a key. It’s more secure.” Mr. Businessman was back. The dichotomy of his sweet side and his business side intrigued Olivia.

The two men entered the house and started to do what they needed in order to secure her home. Alexander looked down on Olivia and grabbed her hand, placing a gentle kiss on her knuckles. “I have to return to the office, Love. Carter is still out front should you need anything. What are you doing tonight? Any plans?”

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