The Problem with Dating Read Online Brittainy C. Cherry

Categories Genre: Alpha Male, Contemporary Tags Authors:

Total pages in book: 110
Estimated words: 107204 (not accurate)
Estimated Reading Time in minutes: 536(@200wpm)___ 429(@250wpm)___ 357(@300wpm)

If I had to choose a person to hate, Alex Ramírez would’ve been first on the list…

Welcome to Honey Creek, Illinois, where life was as sweet as the town’s name suggested. That was, until Mr. Fine Dining himself, Alex Ramírez, rolled into town with a permanent scowl. Even worse, he decided to park his snooty five-star restaurant across from my cozy dog daycare. He was tall, dark, and about as warm as a frozen entrée.

After one too many unpleasant interactions, I was determined to stay out of his way and to keep him out of mine.

But fate had a quirky sense of humor. When Alex inherited his great-aunt’s cranky canine, he had no choice but to come to me, the local dog whisperer, for help. As for me? I needed a fake boyfriend to ward off my ex-husband, who was determined to win me back.

So, we struck a deal: I’d turn his dog into the town's best-behaved pet, and in return, he’d be my arm candy for a few family events and social gatherings. Simple, uncomplicated, and absolutely not romantic—at least, that was what we told ourselves.

As we played house, I couldn't help but notice that underneath Alex’s prickly shell was a dash of charm that wasn't listed in the ingredients. Our pretend dates started to feel a little too real. And our feigned kisses? They were getting laughably close to crossing the line. Suddenly, our interactions felt less like a food fight and more like foreplay.

With every playful touch and lingering glance, I couldn't help but wonder: Was this fake relationship with Alex secretly penning its own authentic ending? Or was I risking it all for someone who was nothing more than make-believe?

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“Rules for happiness: something to do, someone to love, something to hope for.”

– Immanuel Kant



A vibrant leaf floated aimlessly from the maple tree as I stood in my older sister Avery’s driveway, giving me the first sign that the season of change was upon us. Summer was packing up its swimsuits and popsicles, while autumn prepared to unleash its pumpkin spice everything for the next few months. I could smell it in the crisp air—change was around the corner.

It only seemed fitting that I was also about to embark on a new season.

“You don’t have to go,” Avery whimpered as I moved around a box in the back of her boyfriend Wesley’s blue Ford pickup truck. “We’ve loved having you as a roommate!”

I smiled, knowing that I wouldn’t have made it through the past year if it wasn’t for my two sisters. Avery pretty much bottle-fed me self-esteem slogans for the past twelve months to make sure I didn’t drown in my erratic thoughts each day before she tucked me into bed with a blend of herbal tea that my younger sister, Willow, made to help me sleep.

“I have to stand on my own two feet again if I’m going to move forward,” I said. It had been over a year since I’d ended my marriage with my now ex-husband, Cole. I’d been staying with my older sister and Wesley ever since.

Even though I knew they didn’t seem to mind having me around, I felt it was time to shift onto my new stage of life. The small town of Honey Creek only had one apartment complex, a building that overlooked Lake Michigan. Though the view was remarkable, it was odd that I would stay in a one-bedroom apartment there after living in houses for the past ten years, but I was thrilled. Something about having my own space felt like a renewal of my energy.

“You could always come to stay with me in Big Bird,” Willow offered, walking around with the final box of my things. Big Bird was the school bus Willow transformed into a mobile home. It was funny how different my sisters were from one another. When Avery was stubborn and headstrong, Willow was like a flowing stream. Where Avery planted her feet on solid ground, Willow floated away in wanderlust. While Willow wore her heart on her sleeves and allowed anyone and everyone to experience said heartbeats, Avery was as closed off as a person could get.

Sometimes, I wondered which sister I was most like, but then I realized I was probably a blend of them both. I was equal parts perfectionist and wild heart. Yet sometimes those two characteristics clashed during a crisis, and I’d be left drowning in a panic of wtf moments.

Thankfully, when that happened, my sisters would help guide me forward.

“I’ll keep the Big Bird offer in mind. Thanks, Willow,” I told her.

“Anytime,” she said sincerely.

If it weren’t for my sisters, my dad, and our family friend Tatiana, I wasn’t sure I would’ve made it through the past year. It wasn’t getting over Cole that was the problem. Oddly enough, I never had a moment of regret once I left. That was the thing about a person mentally checking out way before their feet moved. Mourning the relationship began before I even left the marriage. I’d said goodbye to him in the spirit before my lips ever spoke. Therefore, I moved through the grief of it all quickly.