much needed therapy
He sat in the waiting room, looking at the watch on his wrist. It was unlike her to be late and yet, that was exactly what was happening. In all of the years that he had known her, she had't been late for one thing. Her receptionist glanced over at him, looking sheepish and nervous, and simply offered him coffee or water to ease the pain of sitting there. He politely declined but he knew that he wouldn't be able to wait forever. He had his own appointments to get to, which was something that she knew very well. He sat with a copy of Thomas Harris' Red Dragon, a re-read for him, and flipped back to the lost place in his book until he knew he needed to leave. If she came within the next couple of minutes, he'd be able to get a full session in with her. Otherwise, he would need to cut the session short.

Just as soon as he was back into his book she came rushing in, apologies the first thing out of her mouth. Her receptionist was still extremely flustered and wasn't sure how to handle the situation and Julia moved to push Jason through the door. He simply smiled at the young girl who was trying to do her best and clearly struggling. Soon, though, Jason forgot all about the girl as Julia was pushing him into the room and closing the door behind them. "I'm sorry, Jason. This isn't like me at all." It was only when she turned around and looked at him that he began to notice that her eyes were red. She tucked a piece of stray hair behind her ear and motioned for him to go and sit down, which he gladly did. When he arrived at the chair, he sat down and looked as she did the same. Her shirt was wrinkled and it didn't appear that she had any makeup on, or if she had it was all washed away now.

"Friend to friend, before we start the session, are you okay?" It was genuine concern for Jason to be worried about her. Not only had she been a friend since their Harvard days, she was also the person that he trusted right now with his own care. Her well being was important to him in more ways than one. It was extremely telling to him that she didn't look at him when she answered it, only with a silent shake of her head. "Julia? Honestly, I would prefer that tell me if today isn't a good day and we can re-schedule. I understand. Of all people in this world, I know you know that I would understand."

For a moment they sat in utter silence and Jason observed her in the moment and it was then that he had noticed something he hadn't seen earlier. Her left hand was stripped of the wedding band that she wore on that finger and it suddenly all made sense to him. He leaned forward in his seat and tried to get his head lowered to meet hers. "While I cannot understand what you're going through right now, you don't need to be strong for me, Julia." That spurred her head to lift up to look at him, tears wet in her eyes and she just stared at him for a moment. He didn't say anything and it wasn't until she got up and went to the door that he even wondered what she was doing. Perhaps she was kicking him out, maybe she needed the break and he had crossed a line. He wasn't quite sure what was going on and then she switched the lock on her door and his eyes widened for a moment, until she turned to look at him again.

"He cheated on me with his younger assistant, for more than a year. I had no idea what was going on until I caught them at the office when I went to surprise him one day. He served me this morning with the divorce papers." She was holding it together, even with tears in her eyes. Now she just looked angry and she sat back down in the chair opposite him and threw her arms up in the air. "I never wanted children and now I have two. I changed my life so much for a man that I should have seen through. Do you know how embarrassing that is?" Jason was frankly surprised at how candid she was being but he sat and listened as she spoke. "Now I have nothing to show for it, except regret. Also anger but I suppose that will subside at some point." She let out a sarcastic laugh and shook her head before meeting his gaze again. "You obviously won't need to pay for this session but I honestly don't have anyone to talk to about any of this and I trust you."

His ears perked up and a small smirk came across his face. "I appreciate that and I understand. Quite frankly, you're much more attractive than most of my clients I see on any given day so this seems like a free session for you as well." She shot him a look and laughed, with a shake of her head. "Oh Jason, you flirt with me even when I am clearly a mess. You're something else." He leaned back in the seat and rested his arms on both of the arm rests. "I'm not stupid, Julia. I know an attractive woman when I see one and I deal with crazier people every day."

Her eyes narrowed at him and she moved to get up, slowly and carefully. He could sense that there was something to this moment but he didn't want to get his hopes up. She was so careful in her movement until she was standing next to him, hand grazing the side of the arm rest that his arm was not on. "When Maggie left you, I remember you showing up at my apartment like a lost little puppy." Her tone was so hushed now and he found himself uncomfortable at the fact that she could just bring up his ex like that. Perhaps that was the problem with going to a therapist who knew too much about you. "You showed up and you didn't know what else to do and so I comforted you and made you a strong drink and told you she wasn't worth it." Now she was on the move or, some might call it a prowl, and she lowered herself into his lap. Her hand snaking up his chest to his face. "Perhaps you can return the favor now?"

There wasn't time to think through what he was going to do and, without hesitation, his lips met hers and that was it, it was over. Clothes would scatter throughout the office, a tie in her mouth to stifle any sound that her receptionist might consider anything sexual. At the end of the session, Jason put on his clothes and looked over at her with a sly smile. "This was one of the better sessions I've had in a while." She scoffed and rolled his eyes as she buttoned back up her button down shirt. "Your therapy will get back on track next week but you might be hearing from me before that." Once her shirt was buttoned and he was completely dressed, she led him to the door, unlocked it and sent him on his way. As he left, the receptionist still looked frazzled and he simply smiled.