"So Melinda, tell me how was your summer?"
My shrink whose name is Caroline Bryce asks me. She's only 26 but she dresses way too sexy.
Today for instance she has on a tight bright red pantsuit and her long corn silk blond hair is down.
Her over all outfit might look slutty on another person but she pulls it off.
I hook my slightly longer and fuller auburn hair behind my ears and say "It's been good, really good actually."
Caroline nods understandingly she leans forward in her black patent leather chair and asks me "Really how so?"
I take a deep breath and try to explain, I lean my head back on my black patent leather chair and think.
Ever since I defeated Andy it seemed like the entire Merry Weather High School had been calling my house.
People I don't even know, had been over that summer calling me to give their congratulations.
The phone calls had gotten so bad that my parents were on the verge of changing our phone number.
They eventually stopped half way through the summer.
I'm still not entirely sure how I feel about all of sudden being the "hero" of my high school. I decide to not think about that.
I straighten myself up in my chair and answer Caroline
"Well I've reconnected with all of my old friends form middle school, do you remember I told you about them once?"
Caroline nods again and says"Yes I remember. I bet that makes you feel good does it?"
I have been seeing Caroline since around the beginning of this summer. When I first started seeing her she insisted that I not call her Dr. Bryce but just Caroline.
It makes our relationship less formal don't you think?
That was her explanation at the time.
I was still a semi-mute back then so I just nodded my head and stayed silent.
She has really helped me get through all of my emotions about what happened with Andy. I like her a lot.
She let's me stay silent when I want to and she doesn't try and push me and let's me take my time answering her questions.
We have become pretty friendly.
I don't say "friends" because that would be way too weird.
I tell her something suddenly "I started dating David Petrakis this summer, I like him a lot."
Caroline smiles she writes something on her pink note pad and replies "Really, that's very good Melinda, now how is the physical aspect of your relationship?"
I tilt my head back against my chair again and sigh. I knew she would ask me this.
It took me awhile to tell David what happened to me.
Since he isn't attuned to the social scene at Merry Weather as most people he didn't hear the story about me and Andy.
I eventually told him on our fourth date.
He wasn't as freaked out as I thought he would be.
He just kissed me on my lips and said I won't ever hurt you like that Melinda I swear,I like you way too much.
We talked all through the date about it.
Well I talked and David listened.
He didn't interpret once. He just sat back and let me talk out my feelings about that horrible night.
He comforted me when I cried and waited for me to relax when I got angry.
That made me like him even more. It made us a whole lot closer. He understood why I had a difficult time telling him.
He wasn't upset that I hadn't told him sooner.
He was only sad that it had happened to me at all.
David promised he'd been there for me no matter what.
After that night I knew I would be with David Petrakis for a long time. Maybe not marriage but for awhile.
Caroline's sometimes too sweet voice breaks into my thoughts"Melinda, Melinda are you all right honey?".
I straighten up again in my seat again and say confident "You don't need to worry about me and David."
Caroline cocks her head to one side and stares at me for a few seconds then she replies uncertain "Oh and why don't I?"
I take another deep breath and say"Because all we do is make out. Another deep breath. "I'm not going to be ready to "do it" with him for a long, long time, he knows this and accepts it."
I allow myself to smile a little.
Caroline picks up on this and says to me"Is that why you like David so much because he understands that you have boundaries to the physical part of your relationship?"
Then she says something that sends me reeling "That's something that Andy didn't do."
I shut my eyes for a second and suddenly I'm back at the party in the woods with Andy on top of me. I shudder and shake me head.
I open my eyes. Caroline's pretty face looks alarmed.
I say to her. "I had a flash back for a second."
We both stay silent.
I have been having flash backs about Andy ever since I started seeing Caroline.
She says it's because I'm fully facing what he did to me.
I stare at her Betty Boop clock above her desk it's been exactly twenty minutes since either of us said anything.
I take a deep breath. Then say "I'm ready now."
Caroline nods she knows I don't really like talking about Andy once I've had a flash back.
She changes tact and asks "So what else have you been up to this summer?"
We spend the rest of the session talking about the Back- to-school shopping I did with Rachel and Ivy.
Nicole was at Tennis Camp so she couldn't come.
Caroline looks at her clock and says to me "Well it's one-thirty time for you to go kiddo. I'm so glad to hear you are doing well."
She gets up form her chair and lays a hand on my shoulder.
She says to me "I'll see you next Friday, keep your spirits up and have a good first week back at school, okay?"
I smile and reply "Thanks I will."