"Christian, you've finally got a girlfriend!" Mia shrieks down the phone. "How come I get to hear about this from Mom – well Elliot actually, but of course I didn't believe him. I just thought it was one of his stupid jokes, so I called Mom and she said it was true, so then I believed it."
Fucking interfering Elliot again. He just can't help himself can he?
"Hi Mia, how's Paris?" I sigh, but can't help smiling at my little sister's exuberance. I know I don't stand a chance in hell of deflecting her inquisition.
"Oh no, don't try and change the subject. Come on, I want to hear all about her. Mom says her name's Anastasia? That's a pretty cool name. So how did you meet? Was it love at first sight? Did your eyes meet across a crowded room and wham that was it?"
"Don't be so melodramatic Mia. Life isn't like that stupid 'chick lit' crap you insist on reading."
"Christian, humor me here. No one has ever seen you with a girl, so she must be pretty special if Elliot and Mom have already met her. I'm just totally bummed this happens while I'm out of the country. You could have waited you know, then I could have checked her out for you. Apparently, Elliot said Dad didn't believe Mom at first when she told him you had a girlfriend. He said she was more likely just a new member of your staff, but Mom insisted and whispered something to him about you being in bed with her when she got to your place. So, are you like totally into each other?"
"Mia, we've only just met. It's early days." I cringe at the thought of my family discussing my sex life. Elliot must be feeling so fucking pleased with himself.
"I mean, we're all used to Elliot and his constant stream of girlfriends, but this is the first time any of us have seen you with a girl, so she must be special."
"Anastasia is pretty special I guess. Now can we change the subject please, Mia," I snap. She's not making all this indecision about Ana any easier for me to handle.
Truth is after the last few days I don't really know how things stand between us. One minute I think I've just about got her within the grasp of my fingertips, the next I think she's slipping right through my fingers.
"Oh don't go all moody on me Christian. You can't blame me for being curious. Mom says she's very pretty, and shy and sweet. She really likes her anyway, so that's good." Mia always ignores and cuts through my moods like no one else. She gets away with murder. But she is my baby sister.
"Yes, I think Mom liked her," I agree.
"And Elliot says she's a totally gorgeous babe, but of course I know she must be, to have caught the eye of my very handsome and charming big brother," Mia teases.
"Looks aren't everything, Mia. True beauty is more than skin deep. You can be so shallow sometimes."
"But I bet she is, isn't she? Beautiful I mean?"
"Yes, she is. Very beautiful. A beautiful person inside too," I confirm quietly. So what is she doing with me? I'm rotten to the core underneath this pretty face.
"So when do I get to meet her?"
"I don't know. Let's just wait and see how things go, hmm?" Ana may well have already run before you even touch down, Mia.
"You are picking me up from Sea-Tac on Saturday aren't you?"
"Yes, I'll be there. So have you enjoyed your time in France? Paris is great, isn't it?"
"I suppose, but France in general would be okay if it wasn't so full of arrogant French bastards. They always think they know better than anyone else."
Her assessment makes me laugh.
"Well if anyone can set them right about that, I'm sure it's you, Mia. Anyhow, you'll be back in the mother country in just a couple of days now. Look I gotta go, things to do, places to be. See you early Saturday morning. I've got all your flight details."
"Okay, but you're not off the hook yet. I want more details about Anastasia when I see you. Bye Christian."
So where exactly do things stand between Anastasia and me?
First off, when we get back to Portland, I drop Anastasia back at her place, but decline her invitation to go in. She makes it real hard for me to resist though, because as she gets out of the car, she smiles cheekily and calls out 'Oh by the way, I'm wearing your underwear' as she pulls up the waistband of a pair of my boxers from her jeans to show me. That is beyond hot. It takes all my resolve not to go straight after her.
But I need to get things back on an even keel, back to normal, in balance. All these confusing feelings are messing with my head. I know what works for me, what fits into my life. I'm a Dom, she can sub for me. Nothing else would work.Would it?
Down to practicalities. I've told Ana to do the research, so she needs a laptop. I phone Barney, my IT guy. I tell him I don't care how he does it, I want him to pull strings with his contacts at Apple to organize a top of the range MacBook to be delivered to Miss Steele first thing tomorrow morning, and I don't give a shit what it costs. I want the very latest iOS, full wireless N and email installed, plus everything else she could possibly need. I give instructions that it's to be delivered in person by one of their top people to install and set it up for her, and they are not to leave until she is fully conversant with how to use it.
As usual, Barney excels himself – that's why he's worth the ridiculously huge salary I pay him. By Sunday evening, he's managed to swing the very latest MacBook, not even available in the shops yet, all set up and ready to go. It will be delivered to Miss Steele at eight o'clock the following morning by one of their top trainers.
I send her an email ready for her to read when she takes delivery of the MacBook in the morning, explaining that this laptop is hers so she can to do the required research before we meet for dinner on Wednesday.
The next morning when it gets past eight o'clock, I keep checking my inbox to see if there is any reply yet from Anastasia. So fucking annoying. I hate waiting.
Finally at twenty past eight, I get a reply. Already she's defying me again, saying the computer is only on loan, not hers. What is her problem about accepting gifts? But I find the email banter between us stimulating and fun. I even put Elliot's stupid irritating 'Laters, baby' in my final email.
I think about her again all day, and am frustrated at having to play stupid fucking golf in the morning.
I hate golf, but the fairways are where a lot of business gets done, so I play. But there's no real physical challenge to it, it's so slow and boring, and my mind keeps drifting off thinking of Ana.
I'm not sure what time she will get back from work, so I send her an email around twenty past five, asking how her day went. Ana replies shortly after, and so our amusing and witty e banter starts again.
But the main reason I've given her this laptop is for research purposes, so I instruct her to stop prevaricating and get on with it. I want our arrangement sorted and concluded, so we can stop all this uncertainty. I suggest she starts with Wikipedia, then I sit back and wait to see what questions she comes up with.
Over two hours pass and I hear nothing back. I start to feel anxious. What's going on? Surely she has some questions for me?
I get a high volume of emails, mostly business ones. I've assigned her messages the highest priority, so they jump to the top of my inbox. Even so, I'm pissed because I still can't stop constantly checking to see if she's replied.
Then, just after half past eight, as I'm going through the schedule for the next few days here in Portland with Taylor, I finally get a reply from her.
Okay, I've seen enough.
It was nice knowing you.
"What the FUCK…"
"Problem, Sir?" Taylor inquires at my outburst as he sees my horrified expression.
I just glower at him so he keeps quiet.
She can't just bail out like this. 'It was nice knowing you?'
What sort of shit is that?
What sort of shit is that?
She's not prepared to discuss a single thing? I thought she was pretty close to agreeing, so what's scared her off? I am so fucking furious that I can't think straight as I sit there and run my hands through my hair in disbelief.
How can she do this after such a great weekend? I thought she enjoyed our time together as much as I did. She gave me her virginity for Christ's sake, does that mean nothing to her?
The sex wasn't good enough to persuade her after all?
Perhaps she needs some more persuading.
The sex wasn't good enough to persuade her after all?
Perhaps she needs some more persuading.
I grab my car keys, deciding I have to see her to find out what the fuck she means.
"Would you like me to drive you somewhere, sir?" Taylor offers, as he raises his eyebrows questioningly. He can see that I'm not exactly calm and collected.
"I'll drive myself," I snap, then take a deep breath. It's only fair to keep Taylor in the picture if I'm expecting him to fulfill his security duties. "I'm going over to see Miss Steele. I don't know how long I'll be."
In the car I put on some music, and the Muse track 'Supermassive Black Hole' plays.
'I thought I was a fool for no one, but ooh baby, I'm a fool for you.'
The heavy base notes suit my mood and I turn it up loud as I drive the short distance.
I'm not in the mood for polite chit chat when I arrive, so luckily Kate's on the phone as she answers the door. She lets me in and waves me in the direction of Ana's room. I find her sitting at her desk listening to her iPod. That's maybe why she didn't answer the door.
I look round her room. It's not very large; it has white wicker furniture, a white double bed, a patchwork quilt, all pale blue and cream. I rather like it; it's restful – not all fussy and pink and girly like Mia's room at home.
I sit on the edge of her bed, next to her.
She looks as if she's been out for a run as she's wearing sweats and her hair is in pigtails. That she's totally shocked to see me is obvious. But she doesn't tell me to get out, or say anything about things being over between us. That's a start anyhow.
"So it was nice knowing me?" I ask frostily.
"I thought you'd reply by email," she whispers.
"I thought I should come and remind you how nice it was knowing me."
The sexual tension is already building again between us. I reach over to free her hair from her pigtails and then gently caress her earlobe, and suddenly she is kissing me. I grab her and we end up on her bed.
Now I do what I do best. I play teasing sex games with her, once I've securely tied her wrists to her iron headboard with my favorite grey silk tie from my pocket.
I cover up her eyes. I keep her waiting. I feed her wine from my mouth. I trail ice down to her navel.
I control her. I tease her. I let her get close to release, and then I deny her.
Again and again.
She tells me her email was a joke. Now the joke is on her as I take my pleasure. She's still tied to the headboard, so when I flip her over, her pretty ass is up in the air, begging to be smacked, so I do - hard. Just once. This time.
Then I quickly sheath up and fuck her.
She comes, but I don't stop. I carry on this harsh punishment fuck until she comes for me again.
"How nice was that?" I growl. I'll teach her to mess with me. I don't do 'nice'.
She was only joking in her email? Not funny.
Turns out she's still working through and considering my proposal. She has some questions for me.
"Why don't you like to be touched?"
"I just don't." Let's not go there.
She asks if I would collar her – I tell her I've never collared anyone before. But now she's mentioned it, I rather like the idea of collaring disobedient Miss Steele to bring her to heel. That could be another first.
"Were you collared?" she asks.
"By Mrs Robinson?"
This nickname of hers for Elena really amuses me. Ana has such a sharp, witty brain. Elena's going to love it too. I'll tell her about it next time we have dinner.
These questions remind me that what I'm offering Ana is a whole new world that she knows nothing about. So to help her understand about subbing, I suggest maybe she talks to one of my former subs. I know Elena arranged for my last one, Susannah, to meet up with Leila, another previous sub, and she told me she found it very helpful.
But Anastasia looks at me as if I'm totally mad.
"Is this your idea of a joke? I'll do this on my own, thank you very much," she snaps.
I'm bemused by her response. She's clearly upset and tells me she's appalled at my suggestion. I don't understand why, until I think I work out it's because she's jealous. Jealous? Of a contractual arrangement?
"Are you staying?" She wants to know.
I can't because that's not how it works between a Dom and his sub. I've already broken too many rules. I have to get back to how it should be, to keep my head clear. So I tell her I won't be staying tonight or any other night in the future. I try really hard to mean it too.
So now Ana practically throws me out, not wanting to discuss anything further, acting like a spoilt child. This has never happened to me before.
"God I'd like to give you a good hiding. You'd feel a lot better, and so would I." That one slap I gave her ass tonight felt so fucking good, I'd really like to finish off what I started.
It really is incredibly hard to walk away from her tonight. Part of me, a very large part of me, just wants to spend the night sleeping next to her. What is she doing to me? But I manage to control myself. I walk out to my car and leave.
Later that night, she emails me a huge long list of her issues in preparation for us to discuss over dinner on Wednesday.
I'm somewhat taken aback, but at least it shows she is giving my proposal serious consideration. However, I need to make something clear, so I email her back the definition of submissive as she seems to be missing the point here.
I can't help but be amused by her reply the next evening. She counters by emailing back the definition of compromise. We are sparring by email, and I find her witty, amusing, challenging, and frustrating all at once. But not boring. Never ever boring.
So for our Wednesday night dinner date, I've reluctantly agreed that Anastasia comes to meet me at The Heathman, as she has insisted she wants to drive rather than be picked up. I think maybe she has control issues of her own. I suspect this is so she can run if she feels the need.
If she's driving, I won't be able to ply her with wine to get her to open up. Of course if she did drink I could get Taylor to drive her back, or she could even spend the night with me. That could work. You don't sleep with a sub, remember Grey? How many times are we going to go through this?
I wait for her in the bar, hoping she isn't going to be late. I actually feel pretty nervous, and I'm worried she's not even going to show.
So when I look up and see her in the doorway I'm relieved – and stunned. She's wearing a dress. A very sexy, fitted purple dress that showcases her gorgeous figure to perfection, along with very sexy high stiletto heels. Wow, what a change from her usual jeans and flats. She literally takes my breath away.
Her shiny long brown hair is curling softly down to her breasts, and she's wearing just enough make up to enhance her beauty rather than mask it. She looks so beautiful.
Man, she looks so hot, fucking scorching hot. Every male in the bar is looking at her and wanting her. But she's mine. Only mine.
She makes her way over to me, and as I lean down to kiss her cheek, I smell her intoxicating smell, and the electricity between us is there again, strong and overpowering.
I must play things right tonight to secure our deal. I have to know we have an agreement in place.
Ana wants to cut to the chase straight away to discuss the contract, but I have other plans.
Seductive plans. I've booked a private dining room for us as I wouldn't want anyone to overhear the things that we are going to be discussing. I offer her the choice of dining in my suite instead, but she declines. No matter. The private dining room will be just fine for what I have in mind.
I've chosen a very special menu to set the tone for our negotiations.
First course - oysters. Casanova supposedly consumed fifty oysters each day to keep his libido in top form. As the oysters lie there, raw, moist, tender and glistening in their half-shell, waiting to be devoured, it is easy to conjure up erotic associations.
I wait with some amusement to see Ana's reaction to them. I want sex to be on her mind the whole time we're eating – and negotiating. I want her to be constantly reminded of how good each fuck between us has been. And then I'm going to give her a truly mind blowing fuck right here on the table in this private room. Then she won't hesitate any longer, she'll feel compelled to sign up to be my sub. That's the plan.
"I hope you like oysters."
"I've never had one," she murmurs as she looks at me with those alluring blue eyes.
"All you do is tip and swallow. I think you can manage that."
She blushes, knowing that I'm referring to the fantastic head she gave me the other day. I've spent quite some time thinking about that experience. Too much time if I'm honest. It was fucking awesome. And her first attempt too. Such potential.
I eat the first one to show her how it's done.
"Hmm, delicious. Tastes of the sea. Go on, try one," I urge.
"So, I don't chew it?"
"No, Anastasia, you don't," I confirm. When she tips the oyster between her full soft lips and effortlessly lets it slip down her throat, I'm really turned on.
I hope she likes them as much as I do. I hope she's as turned on as I am.
"I'll have another." Promising.
That's Ana, open minded and willing to try new experiences. See, this is what I find fascinating about a girl who seems so shy on first impression.
"Did you choose these deliberately? Aren't they known for their aphrodisiac qualities?" She's catching on.
"I don't need an aphrodisiac near you. I think you know that, and I think you react the same way as me," I tell her. The electricity is crackling stronger than ever between us right now. She feels it just as much as I do, I know she does.
But we also have to get down to business, to re-negotiate her contract in preparation for her signing up as my sub. Her list of 'issues' was so long that I've printed it out, so now I start to work my way through them with her.
She's worried about being hurt. She actually goes quite pale when we start talking about suspension. Not a good start, so I agree to make that a hard limit for her. Rope play is quite time consuming and complicated to set up, but still, it's a shame. Fucking a sub who is bound and suspended from the ceiling is a favorite scene of mine.
We go on to discuss obedience. This is a key component of subbing, so she really needs to get her head around this. After some encouragement, Ana hesitantly agrees she could try. I'll soon bring her into line too, with some carefully selected punishments. It'll be so much fun.
No sub has ever suggested spending less time with me, but Ana doesn't want to commit to every weekend. I manage to keep my cool and remember her suggestion about compromising. I negotiate an extra day with her midweek if she insists she wants a weekend away from me, but I insist on at least a three month trial, as the month trial she suggests is far too short a time.
I explain in depth how our arrangement revolves around trust. Hopefully I've already proven to her that she can trust me, by how great the fucking has been so far. So now I just need her agreement to allow me to dominate her, so that she can experience even greater sexual pleasure. I spell out to her that as her Dominant, I will fuck her any time, any way, anywhere I want. And she will want that. I know it's what I want more than I've ever wanted anything before, so I have to convince her.
She's not saying much.
I go on to explain about pain and discipline.
"I can show you how pleasurable pain can be. You don't believe me now, but this is what I mean by trust. There will be pain, but nothing you can't handle. It comes down to trust. Do you trust me, Ana?" Just put yourself in my hands, then everything else will fall into place. It will be so good between us.
I'm backing her into a corner here. This has to lead to her agreeing to be my sub. This is what I'm good at, negotiating by manipulation, finding the weak spot in an argument.
"Yes, I do." Yes! I think finally I've got her with this answer.
"Well, the rest of this stuff is just details."
The entrees arrive; black cod, asparagus and crushed potatoes with hollandaise.
We move onto the rules; I'm not happy about her refusal to compromise about food, but she insists it's a deal breaker, so I reluctantly concede that, as well as the sleep rule. Nevertheless, I will try my utmost to keep her as near to the rules as possible while she is with me, to ensure her wellbeing and good health. I'm still not convinced she doesn't have anorexic tendencies; she eats so little, and seems to have low self-esteem and body image issues. Maybe I'll discuss this with Flynn when he gets back next week.
As we discuss the rest of her issues, Ana goes very quiet. I've given her a great deal to think about already, so we agree to leave discussing soft limits for now. Information overload.
So I steer the conversation round to begin her seduction, telling her I'd like to peel her out of that dress. But it seems she's worked out what's going on, what game I'm playing, as she resists me.
"Christian, you use sex as a weapon. It really isn't fair," she whispers as she looks into my eyes.
And I can see the balance of power beginning to shift, so I try another tack. I explain how being a sub means that as her Dom I would take all the worry off her shoulders. I tell her she should just let me take care of everything. I know she wants me, I can read her body language, all the little subtle signs. This is what she wants, so she should just follow my lead, do as I say, I try to convince her.
"Christian. You just don't fight fair," she insists, then starts to play her own game.
Asparagus. Phallic and erotic.
She takes a spear, then slowly puts the tip of it in her mouth and sucks. Now who's not playing fair? I lose my concentration as she slowly licks her lips and then bites the tip off. Christ, she's a fast learner. Blast her GPA.
But the spell is suddenly broken by the stupid fucking waiter coming in to clear the plates, and at that moment Ana seems to come to a decision, as she declines dessert.
"I think I should go," she announces.
I'm completely knocked off balance by this. How did this happen? How have I lost control? I was about to go in for the kill and fuck her brains out.
"Go?" This is not how I expected things to pan out at all, and I'm baffled.
"Yes. We both have the graduation ceremony tomorrow," she insists as she stands up. Does she even have a submissive bone in her body?
I really don't want her to go. I'm so desperate to get her to stay, I even break my rules again by asking her to spend the night with me, but that's not enough for her. She still says no, because I admit that she wouldn't be able to touch me. That's one rule where there is no possible compromise.
"I don't know any other way, Anastasia. This is who I am."
I have the most awful sinking feeling that she is telling me goodbye. I've played what I thought was my winning hand tonight and I've lost.
"Christian, I have to think about this. I don't know if I can have the kind of relationship you want." That sounds like a 'no' to me.
I have no option but to let her go. My mind is racing through what this is going to mean. What am I going to do, what else can I do?
"You're moving this weekend to Seattle. If you make the right decision, can I see you on Sunday?" I feel like a teenager asking for a date.
"We'll see. Maybe."
Her hesitant answer doesn't reassure me in the least. But I won't give up without a fight.
However, those worries are pushed to one side when I see the valet pull up in her car outside the hotel when she goes to leave.
What the fuck is that piece of shit? An ancient Beetle? I doubt it has one single safety feature. I can't have this. I won't have her risking her life every time she drives that piece of crap.
Even if, as she informs me, her stepdad did buy it for her, I can do better. She will have a new car with every safety feature available as soon as I can get it arranged, whatever she says.
This is far too important for her stupid pride to stand in the way. Her stepfather would want the best for her too, I'm sure, and I can easily afford it even if he can't.
I toy with the idea of forbidding her to drive it and getting Taylor to take her back, but I know she will refuse. If only she was my sub, this wouldn't be a problem; she would just do as I say.
If I'd have known before that this death-trap was what she was driving, I would have had Taylor disable it to ensure she couldn't go anywhere in it. I make a mental note that in future, all background checks must include details of the subject's car. I'm totally pissed that this was missed, and that I was not aware that she's been risking her life in this way.
"Drive safely," is all I can say.
And she drives off, possibly out of my life.
I just don't get it. I'm puzzled why she ran this evening. I go back to my room and send her an email. I try to reason calmly and logically with her. I ask her to really think again about my proposal. I want to make it work, and I tell her we will take it slow.
For me, this is practically begging.
I don't get a reply. Neither does she reply to the texts I send her. I try not to panic. Nothing bad could have happened to her on the way back, could it? I get Taylor to check there have been no reported accidents. There haven't.
So most likely she is ignoring me. Or her laptop isn't working. Unlikely. No, she's ignoring me, which is not a good omen.
I don't sleep much at all. I have to speak to her tomorrow, I can't go on like this, I need an answer, I'm going crazy. At least I know she will be at the graduation ceremony - as long as she hasn't been killed in that fucking death-trap of a car.
I don’t own any of the Fifty Shades Trilogy or the characters therein. They belong to E L James. I’m just borrowing them for fun and not for profit. Please refer to the Legal’s page for further details. This work is not to be copied or reproduced in any way without permission.