Chapter 26

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"Our love was consuming, literally breathtaking, and so goddamn addicting. I know I'm still recovering from that drug, and I'm so close to relapsing at the sole thought of seeing her again."


I still feel her.

It's been almost a week and I can still feel her fingers on my chest, feel her breath on my skin, her dangerously delicious scent is still etched into my brain like I need it to survive.

I knew I'd fooled myself. I knew I wouldn't be able to just forget her. How could I? But I thought I could at least just avoid her, ignore her when our paths would cross.

The events of last week show that I'm nowhere near forgetting about her, that I can't just turn away from her when she's in sight. Hell, even now I just want to chase her, want to hold her, kiss her...

Fucking hell.

I've thought and spoken enough about my past to know that I was a huge fucking asshole back then. I treated her like shit, constantly, and in the end I hit her where it hurts the most when I said those words. They were a blatant lie, obviously. Mia has never been cold, but I had to say what I needed to so she would stop fighting. I honestly didn't think she'd believe them so easily, but I guess that worked in my favor, if that's what you can call it...

"Dr. Grey?" the familiar voice brings me out of my thoughts, and I look at Dr. Avian, notepad in her lap and hands folded on her knees. It's the typical therapist pose, open body language but not open enough to shift the attention to herself, her whole posture is relaxed and content, and the feeling usually transfers to the atmosphere around us.

Dr. Avian is an excellent therapist. I left Dr. James back then, for obvious reasons, and it took me a while to find a therapist who was worth something, but Dr. Avian managed to convince me the second she shook my hand. Something about her just radiates sympathy and calm. I know she's a luminary in her field, behavioral therapy is her strong suit and people usually stand in line to see her. I was lucky enough since the hospital has connections no private person could establish, so here I am.

"Sorry," I focus back on her, that familiar sympathy again sparkling in her eyes when she smiles at me. We are talking about my new patient, but I keep getting distracted. I'm not surprised when she throws the notepad on the table next to her and leans back on the chair, shooting a warm smile before she speaks, "Why don't you tell me about last week?"

I've made the mistake of underestimating how much she picks up when we talk. It always feels like a natural conversation so I just let my words flow, but she's trained for this, she knows every little habit I don't even recognize myself. It's mesmerizing, in a way, watching her work without looking like she does. It's a talent.

"I saw her again." I decide to cut the bullshit. I've learned a lot these past years, and I know that I can't hide shit, so I might as well be open and use the little time we have each week.

"Saw who again?" she asks, almost nonchalantly.

"Mia." One word, and my heart already collapses again.

That makes her widen her eyes for just a split second, and I can't deny I'm somewhat proud that I actually manage to elicit a genuine reaction like that out of someone who usually seems to be in meticulous control of her emotions.

"Okay, and what happened?"

I heave a sigh, mustering up the courage to tell her all about this. She knows about what happened back then. Hell, this woman knows more about me than I do myself, probably. And even though she said my methods of doing so were wrong and insensitive, she also said it was better for both Mia and me to distance ourselves. She thinks what we had back then was codependency, each of us had something to gain from having the other in our life, and it would have just ended in chaos as soon as one of us couldn't offer that something anymore one day.

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