That makes me shake my head.
“You can. Willow, I know we haven’t known each other long, but one thing is certain.”
He leans down until his lips are hovering over mine. “You are the strongest person I know.”
“No. Not really. I ran rather than deal with it.”
“You didn’t run. You regrouped. And in order to do that, you left your life behind. Most people wouldn’t have been able to do that.”
“I can kick someone’s ass now.”
“See. Mentally and also physically strong.”
“I’m scared all the time.”
“That may be the case, but it doesn’t change it. You need to speak to someone to help you channel the fear.”
“But that’s another thing. I can’t. I can’t use my name . . .” I stop and take a deep breath. “No one can know. I can’t have it tracked back to me.”
Jaxson looks off to the side of the room, then smiles to himself. As if he figured out the secret to life. “I might have someone.”
“A therapist you can talk to.”
“And you trust him?”
“I do. He helped my buddy out a few years back when he was having nightmares. But it’s more than that.”
“Vague much . . . ?”
“Let’s just say, I have helped his family out a few times.”
My eyebrow raises. “Oh.”
“Yeah, oh.” He laughs.
“That little hobby of yours sure pays off sometimes.”
“Oh, you have no idea. The number of people who owe me . . .” His lips split into a large smirk. “I’ll make a few phone calls tomorrow.”
“Now close your eyes and go back to sleep.”
“I’m not sure if I can.”
“Then let me help you.”
“What do you have in mind?”
He doesn’t answer me. Instead, he pushes me lightly back down onto the pillow and climbs on top of me.
“I’ll think of something,” he says as he kisses my neck.
With a smile on my face, I relax into his kisses, his touches, and just being with him and letting go.
* * *
The next morning comes, and as my eyes open, I’m met with an empty bed and a cold one at that. But I can smell the fresh-roasted coffee in the air.
I stretch my arms over my head and stretch out the last remainder of sleep still in my body.
Once I’m fully awake, I climb out of the bed and grab Jaxson’s shirt from the chair. Then barefoot and sans pants, I walk to the kitchen.
I find Jax standing in sweats and no shirt.
His back is toward me, and he is holding a phone to his ear.
“Yes. I’ll hold,” he says as I walk up behind him and slide my hands around his middle. One of his arms reaches behind his body and touches me, before I let go and then go to move to stand in front of him.
When I do, he’s lost in pouring himself a coffee before he notices me. His gaze drops and then trails up my body. He must like what he sees because his eyes seem to darken with appreciation before he steps closer to me and places a kiss on my lips.
“You busy?” I mouth.
He shakes his head.
“Hello, Preston. Yes. Thank you for agreeing to take this call,” he says.
He bobs his head as he listens. “Yes, I looked into the anonymous call line you have set up, but I hacked it in under one minute.” He listens more. “I know she can’t be a patient, and I can’t have her call in, just in case, but is there any way you can speak to her? Not as a patient but as a friend of a friend?”
Preston must say something because Jaxson paces back and forth. “No. I understand. Yes, I really appreciate it. Okay, I’ll have her come to your brownstone. Thank you again.”
He hangs up the phone and turns to me.
“Who was that?” I ask.
“Okay . . .” I walk around him and stand in front of the cabinet to grab a mug. I open it, reach inside, and lift onto my tiptoes. “What about him?” I ask as my fingers wrap around the porcelain.
I turn around and see him looking at my legs, or maybe it’s my ass. Probably the latter, seeing as there is drool coming out of his mouth.
“What did he say?”
“He’ll see you today but at his apartment. He can’t have you come to his office. Too much red tape. He also works at a hotline, where callers are anonymous, but well . . .”
“You hacked it.” He nods. “You got him to see me today. Jeez, what do you have on him?”
“Nothing.” He laughs. “He was cool with it. He wouldn’t be your doctor. Just helping me out, I helped his brother and his sister a bit. Well, their significant others but same difference. He wanted to help.”
I walk over and pour myself a cup of coffee, lifting it to my mouth and taking a sip. I don’t know how I feel about seeing a therapist, even if it’s not as my doctor per se.