StatCtr

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

BOOK IV - Chapter III - Christian and Anastasia Fan Fiction

CHAPTER III

HALF OF MY HEART


I collapse in a chair by her bed. Then gently hold her hand with no attachments, and bury my face in it.

Fragile - Stevie Wonder & Sting

“I’ll leave you alone with her, Mr. Grey. But we will conduct additional tests to confirm her stability and progress, and of course to see if there are any changes to her condition.”  When I look up to thank the doctor, I can only nod in response. Now that the adrenaline is running out, I feel a kaleidoscope of emotions; relieved, exhausted, angry, cautiously optimistic, in love, and in a punishing mood starting with my wife. And by God if she ever tries to pull anything like that again, I will spank the shit out of her! As the doctor walks out, I see Taylor by the door, his lips thinned into a tight line, his jaw clenched, his eyes staring at the light pointedly which is a trick I have used in the past to prevent shedding tears. Taylor too is relieved, upset, worried and angry about Anastasia.

He clears his throat. “I’m glad Mrs. Grey’s prognosis is positive, sir. I’ll go talk to Sawyer and Welch and see where we are.”

I nod. “Tell Welch, I need to see him as soon as he’s done with the…” my voice breaks, I stop, take a breath and continue, “…scene. And find out where they took the fucking bastard.”

“Yes, sir,” he replies. As he opens the door to exit, Gail is standing on the other side of it, her hand held up as she gets ready to knock the door.

I can see Taylor’s eyes soften, and something in him melts. His lip quivers, but he doesn’t say anything. He just holds her in his embrace, and presses his lips firmly on her forehead and holds her there for long few minutes. Wordlessly they look at each other, and she nods understanding he has a job to do, and lets him walk away.

Gail’s eyes are red rimmed, and though she’s impeccably dressed in her usual professional manner, she looks bewildered and out of sorts.

“Mr. Grey! I came as soon as I could. How is Mrs. Grey?” she asks dabbing her eyes with a crumpled tissue in her hand.

“Her prognosis is positive so far, Gail,” I say with difficulty.

“Oh, Mr. Grey,” she says and makes her way to me in rapid steps. In an unguarded moment, she opens her arms in the gesture of a hug, but realizes who she’s trying to hug, and holds back, but, I hold my hand up and gently touch her shoulder.

“I know, Gail,” I say nodding.

“Is the… is the baby okay?” she asks tentatively.

“Yes…” I say relieved. “Yes, the baby is okay.”

“Thank God!” she sighs relieved, reflecting my sentiment.

The door to Ana’s room swings open forcefully as the teary eyed Katherine Kavanagh rushes in followed by my brother Elliot. She makes a beeline to Ana’s side.

“What happened to her?” she asks partly accusatory because only a day ago I called her looking for Anastasia when she spent the night in the playroom.

“Kate!” Elliot says admonishing, and then he comes and holds me in a bear hug. I find myself reciprocating and needing his embrace. When we let go of each other, I notice that he still has his hard hat on his head, work clothes, and steel toed construction boots.

“Dad called on his way here. I rushed from work and Kate from hers,” he says in a choking voice. “He said Mia is at the hospital too and that it was Hyde who kidnapped them and you and your men rescued them, but didn’t have time to explain a whole a lot because he was rushing to the hospital. What the fuck happened?”

"Mr. Grey, I'll leave you with your family, and come back and check on Mrs. Grey later," Gail says, and I give her a broken smile in response. 

“My personal hell unleashed…” I say in hoarse voice. And like Taylor did earlier, I find myself looking into the light to prevent shedding my mutinous tears. “The details are just surfacing. I’m waiting for Welch to come and give the particulars of the bigger picture. But we have a general idea,” I say running my hands through my face and my hair. I swallow and then I sink back to my chair, and hold Anastasia’s hand, gently kissing it all over. Kate moves by the side of my brother, holding onto him, she wipes away her tears and finally she buries her face into his chest. He tightens his embrace on her; it kills me that I can’t do to my wife right now as she lies in her bed silently. Oxygen is being given to her to aid her breathing in order to help her heal her body faster, but she can breathe on her own. I caress the hand I take into my gently, kiss it once again, and cover it with my other hand. My gaze fixed on my wife’s still face, I continue. 

“I had to go to Portland for business. Right before Taylor and I flew back, we got word that Ana wasn’t well, and was going home. As soon as I landed in Seattle, my world just fell apart. Sawyer called and said that Ana ran away from Escala.” Katherine lifts her head up from Elliot’s chest looking at me with widened eyes first, but then she narrows them.

“I received a phone call from my bank telling me that Anastasia was withdrawing five million dollars. I thought that confirmed that she was leaving me-“

“Ana would never do that! She doesn’t care for your money, Grey!” Kate defends her best friend.
“I know,” I say in a small voice, disgusted of myself that others have more trust in her than I let myself trust. It’s not a trust issue, maybe. More that I’m not worthy of her.

“But I didn’t know what to think. I asked her if she was leaving me, and she first said, no, but a second later she said yes. She said yes!” I say my voice unrecognizable, the pain is fresh. “My entire world was crumbling. Finally when Taylor got a phone call saying Hyde was released on bail, I called Ana back to prevent her from following through whatever crazy scheme she was going to follow against Hyde, but she wouldn’t answer the phone. We rushed to the bank but Hyde was working with Elisabeth Morgan! I didn’t know she was partners in crime with him... She worked with Anastasia every day at SIP!” I utter in pain.

“Elisabeth and Hyde kidnapped Mia, and we understood later that he blackmailed Ana, and that’s why she was withdrawing the money. She could have told me, but she didn’t and broke my heart and went to meet the fuckers to pay his ransom and save Mia! I’m so angry with her, with myself, with everyone!”

“I’m extremely angry with her, myself! What the hell was she thinking? Why would she think that she could handle this psycho and his maniac assistant? She could have… she could have…” says Kate unable to bring her sentence to a close, she starts crying again.

“We tracked her phone to locate her. When we got there, she shot the fucker Hyde on the leg after he beat her an inch of her life. So here we are.” I say as both Elliot and Kate look at me with the identical shocked expressions.

“She did what?” Kate squeaks in a high pitched noise.

“She shot Hyde. But by the time we arrived at the scene, Ana was unconscious with her sustained injuries, and Mia was drugged. Seeing my wife on the cold concrete nearly dead, Mia lulling lifeless in Sawyer’s arms, I lost myself and I nearly killed Hyde for what he did to them and now here you are witnessing my worst nightmare come true,” I say shrugging.

I see my brother go rigid, his lips thinned, his eyes darkened with malice which is a mood I have never seen him in.

“I’m sorry Christian!” he says. “Ana risked her life for our sister. It’s the most courageous, and selfless thing anyone had ever done for our family,” he says words choking him.

“Not to mention the stupidest!” Kate shouts.

“Shhhh! You must be quiet. Mrs. Grey is supposed to be resting, not having a convention in her room! She has been through a trauma,” admonishes a middle aged bulky nurse as she closes the door behind her. Her name tag reads “Nora, RN”.

“I’m here to check her vitals, and we will take her to do some tests and scan her brain activity.”

“I thought the doctor said her brain function was normal,” I say alarmed.

“And we’d like to keep it that way. That’s why she is in a hospital so we can monitor her, Mr. Grey. We must see all the changes in her -- good or bad so that we can take necessary steps to prevent the undesired outcomes and make sure her treatment is making the progress we desire,” she says as she takes Ana’s temperature, marks her chart with inputs from the several monitors that are in the room.

“If you don’t mind, I will have to examine Mrs. Grey’s body, and I'd like to keep her modesty.  She will need some privacy,” says Nurse Nora wanting to kick everyone out.

“Uhm. Yeah, we’ll visit tomorrow again. We’ll go and find Mia and Mom and dad,” Elliot says as he tags Kate's hand and they exit the room.

“I want to stay,” I say to Nurse Nora with unblinking eyes.

“But Mr. Grey, she will need her privacy.”

“Don’t worry Nurse Nora! I’ve seen my wife’s body before. I will remain in the room,” I say.

“She may not want you to see her like this; most patients don’t—“ she repeats her protest.

“I’m not leaving!” I growl, and she begrudgingly sighs and continues her examination of my wife. She doesn’t pull the sheet down but opens different sections and checks the bruising, and takes notes on her chart. When she’s nearly done with her check-up, two technicians appear at the door. I look at the nurse questioning; worried.

“We have to take Mrs. Grey for an MRI,” she explains.

“Why?”

“She has a contusion to the head and a hairline fracture as Mrs. Grey’s doctor told you. That must be monitored. I’m sure one of her attending physicians can explain the purpose of her MRI scan to you, Mr. Grey.”

“How long will she be gone?”

“The MRI scan is about thirty minutes. Would you like the attending Physician to come and talk to you? Dr. Singh is on duty right now.”

“Yes. I need to get more information. But, first, I want to go with my wife.”

"We can't take you to the MRI room Mr. Grey. The hospital rules require us to only take the patient. Perhaps you'd like to talk to the Doctor first." 

You said thirty minutes? I'll wait," I say and she nods at the technicians.  

When Anastasia is wheeled out of her room, I follow her outside, and find Taylor standing at the door.

“Where’s Welch?” I ask.

“He tied up the loose ends with the police and he’s on his way here, sir,” he says.

“What loose ends?”



“I had Welch's men pull guns on the police, sir, when you were trying to get to Hyde, and they trained their guns on you, ready to shoot. That loose end…”

“Will they get arrested?”

“I hardly think so, sir. The police and the judicial system fucked this up so much that they are going to be only more cooperative with us. Not after what went down, and how ineffective the cops were in apprehending Hyde. You don’t need to worry about that. Welch got his foot so high up in the Police Department’s ass, they’ll be shitting out nails and his expensive leather for the next two months!”

“What about the court and the bail?”

“That’s another thing. Your lawyer decided to earn his keep, and managed to drag his thousand dollars an hour ass to the courthouse all day today since the fucker Hyde was released on confidential bail and your lawyers weren’t informed of it due to some convenient paperwork mix-up for 3 whole hours. By the time we learned about it this afternoon, Hyde had been free for six fucking hours! They were supposed to be informed of any attempt for bail! Not after the court sees no opposition from the aggrieved party, and releases a criminal to commit yet another crime within two hours of release!” he says angrily.

“Six hours?” I say stuck in the original declaration. Rage brews anew in me. I don’t know who to turn my wrath on to first. The police, Hyde, courts, the bail bondsman…

“Some of the information is coming to light after your lawyer finally got fire lit under him. The bail that was granted to release Hyde was confidential. There were attempts to post the bail anonymously but that can’t be done. The confidential posting was in cash, and track of it stops at the poster. The poster has no prior relations, and his name so far is not released, and the bondsman has no prior knowledge of Hyde. It’s a virtual dead end. You know what that means sir...” he says raising his eyebrows.

“Yes. It’s a well-orchestrated plan to get Hyde out knowing what he would do to my family,” I reply seeing the malice in the scheme.

“Exactly! When Welch gets here…” he says and Welch turns the corner to talk to the nurse’s station. Seeing us he makes his way towards the two of us with somber face. “Speaking of the devil…” says Taylor.

“I’m sorry for Mrs. Grey and your sister, sir,” he starts. I nod.

“Give me the deeds!”

“It’s as you and Taylor suspected. I interviewed the bank manager, employees, and surveyed the crime scene. The last anyone heard from your sister or seen her was when she was at the gym. She had not taken her security with her, and your father confirms that he relented on it past few days. I worked out a deal where I or one of my men will get to listen in on the initial interrogations of Hyde and Morgan.  Miss Morgan got a phone call from Hyde this morning. She swears up and down that she didn’t know he was getting out, and blackmailed her into—“

“Blackmailed her how?” I ask.

“Apparently Hyde fucked her in ways that would totally ruin her reputation, and she couldn’t ever get a job in a respectable workplace, and apparently she comes from a conservative family. Her mom is still living. She said it would kill her mother if she found out.”

“So, she opted on killing my family instead?” I ask with fury.

“It appears that he didn’t give her much time to think. Apparently he forced her to cooperate before. She was the Dodge driver when your car was chased, for instance. He told her that he would leak the information to the media and make it look like it was all her idea. But then money got into the equation today and she was more than willing. Hyde promised her ½ of the take; though I have serious doubts that he would give her anything. It’s too early to speak, but I think he had all the intention to dispose of the women, sir, including Miss Morgan.”

“What?” I ask my eyes wide, my nostrils flaring, my hands run to my hair.

“It’s not set in stone yet, but there were horse tranquilizers enough to kill a couple of elephants, as well as makeshifts weights to tie to a body and dump into the ocean. Your sister was given a date rape drug called Rohypnol which is illegal to manufacture, sell or use in the United States but doctors can order it from neighboring countries for medical purposes; it’s available in Mexico. You just can’t get it off the pharmacy shelf... Unless of course Hyde has had this plan in his back pocket for a while or someone provided him with those things beforehand. That's something we still have to discover.”

“How can you be absolutely sure? Because if that’s the case, I want you to find each and every person so I can personally destroy them!”

“Here’s the thing sir: Hyde was just released that morning. When did he have time to go to the doctor and convince a doctor to provide him this injection when it’s illegal to use it here? He didn’t.  What’s more, maybe you can find the pill form of the drug from a dealer. But this was an injection, and harder to come by. Rohypnol is given for sleep disorders in its original purpose; it’s a sedative and starts its effect 15-20 minutes after administration, and just one dose’s effect may persist more than twelve hours, and this shit causes short term memory loss; that’s why it’s an effective date-rape drug.

But there’s more… We found a chloroform bottle in the SUV. It was evident that he used that first on Miss Mia to knock her out. It was 900 ppm which I gave to the hospital so they can get a better idea what was forcefully administered to Miss Mia. The problem with that is sir; 500 ppm of chloroform poses immediate danger. And breathing what was administered to your sister even for a very short period can cause dizziness. That rag he held onto your sister’s face was soaked with it. She’s very lucky that she passed out immediately because even if she was to swallow 10 ml of chloroform, it could have killed her! We also found a syringe with a broken needle with the horse tranquilizer in it. They pulled the rest of the needle out of your sister’s shoulder I’m told. He probably ended up breaking the needle possibly in his nervous attempt to subdue Miss Mia. When that didn’t work he reached for the closest drug which was Rohypnol.”

I listen to Welch’s account with growing fury; my vengeance is slowly brewing inside. I want to know everything that was planned so that no one ever attempts to harm anyone I love. When the time comes, I will exact my due with interest.  They all fucked with the wrong man!

“What else?” I ask completely in control, and impassive.

“We also found about five-hundred thousand Dollars of cash in ten-thousand Dollar sleeves that is other than what Mrs. Grey had withdrawn from the bank. But that was Hyde’s personal stash which Miss Morgan swears up and down she had no idea about. In fact she was quite surprised and angry to learn about it. Their forced relationship is already breaking down, and Miss Morgan was yapping like a particularly annoying parrot. She’ll bring Hyde down to save her own ass—“

“Tell my fucking lawyers that I want the fullest extent of law applied to both. I want you to locate the financier. I have my suspicions on a few people. I wrote the names down,” I say handing him my list. “Follow each one, each lead, account their whereabouts, phone records, associations without exception starting with the time Hyde’s identity was made public. Look for patterns. And I want you to find the connection. Hyde knows me; not just through the media, but before... way before. He's known me, and I want to know how, where, when. I don’t remember him, but I have a feeling that Michigan is the connection. Go to Detroit and find out what that connection is. He had parents. So, it wasn’t adoption; we weren’t brothers. But there’s something we are overlooking. I want you to find out what that is.”

“Yes, Mr. Grey. I will have to put things in motion in Seattle first to follow the hot leads, and I will take off to Detroit.”

“Good! I want to be informed of everything. Get the fucking lawyers on board, or I will fire the lot of them!”

“Also, your assistant Andrea called, sir,” says Taylor.

“What would you like to do about the press release? Apparently the reporters are camped outside of Escala, the Grey House, and of course they’re all over the hospital ground. I have men standing all over the building to prevent anyone slipping in to take a picture or get one of the nurses or orderlies to do so. A press release might alleviate part of that pressure on the hospital staff.”

The idea that some paparazzi lurking around to get a shot of my wife’s beaten body, or my sister in her drugged stupor is unbearable.

“Tell Andrea to have the PR release minimal information, but enough to take not make it worth the paparazzi’s while to sneak in here. Have them coordinate with the police department to see what information is to be kept confidential.”

“Will do, sir.”

Sawyer comes with a well-insulated restaurant bag.

“We thought you might be hungry…” shrugs Taylor.


*****  *****

When Ana isn’t brought back to her room in forty-five minutes, I start getting nervous. When I go to the nurse’s station, I find Nora.

“Yes, Mr. Grey,” she say looking over her half-moon glasses in a no-nonsense attitude. She looks like my third grade teacher Mr. Udanski. Their similarity is not in their appearance but their attitude. She gives me Mr. Udanski’s you look like a trouble-maker, I’ve-got-my-eyes-on-you, look. If this woman had smile muscles, they’ve lost their function with limited use  some time ago.

“My wife isn’t back yet. You said the MRI was going to take thirty minutes. It’s been forty-five minutes.”

“Yes, I said that. The process, scanning her brain will take about thirty minutes. I didn’t tell you how long it was going to take it for them to prep her for it. And besides, MRI lab isn’t on this floor. She is taken to the Radiology which is in the Outpatient building.”

“What the fuck!”

“Mr. Grey, do not speak to me in that tone!” she says with her hands on her hips. “You’re asking me the information about Mrs. Grey's scanning which I am providing. There is no need for you to use profanity!”

“Get me the fucking doctor immediately!” When she looks at me with a blank expression, “Now!” I shout making the other nurses turn heads, and a few of the visitors sticks their heads out of the rooms.

Nora, unfazed shakes her head, and picks up the intercom and pages the doctor. Taylor takes out the hospital map out of his pocket and locating outpatient center runs out of the corridor to find Anastasia. Dr. Singh shows up in a few minutes just as I’m fuming with last drop in my cup.

“How can I help you Mr. Grey?” she asks. Her face falls when she notices my unyielding, furious expression.

“Is something the matter?”

“My security personnel specifically informed the hospital the circumstances which involved my wife and sister. My wife has been taken for MRI fifty-one minutes ago. Nora here has informed me that she would be gone thirty minutes. And now she tells me that the Radiology is located at the Outpatient Center. I was not allowed to accompany my wife. Had I known where she was being taken, I would make sure that I would go along with our personal security. I’m sure the hospital administration made you aware of the reporters and the paparazzi camped around the hospital, and here you are allowing my wife to be transported to the Outpatient Center without any protection! Do you know how angry I am? Would you like it if your battered and bruised body was the centerfold in a gossip magazine? Do you realize the psychological damage it could do to her once she finds out?”

“Mr. Grey! No such thing happened. I’m sure she’s taken with our regular precautions which are plenty. Yes, there is an outpatient Diagnostics and Imaging Center at the hospital located in the outpatient center, but that’s only for patients who are not checked into the hospital. We have another one for patients that are…”

“Dr. Singh,” nurse Nora calls.

“There was a backlog of several patients for the Inpatient Imaging which is why it shows here that Mrs. Grey is taken to the Outpatient Center. That’s why I informed Mr. Grey as such.”

“Oh, dear!” Dr. Singh exclaims and rushes to the desk to grab a phone. She gets into a heated argument with someone on the phone.

“This is not the protocol! I don’t care how the patient is sent! …” she says pausing.

“I have NOT authorized it! Do you have the patient or not?” Her face blanches, and my blood rushes to my head, my breathing speeds up. I can’t believe this is happening again.

“When?”

I dial Taylor.

“Where are you?”

“On my way to the Diagnostics,” he says as I hear his rapid footfalls. He must be running. “I have Ryan on site, but they’re refusing to give information to him about Mrs. Grey. Have the Doctor authorize it so we can make sure she’s there,” he says, and I hear him say something to someone.

“Dr. Singh!” I shout, she looks up from the phone. “One of my men is at the Outpatient Diagnostics Center. Name’s Ryan. Have him grant access to my wife, now!”

“Your man is the third person who wanted to have access to Mrs. Grey in the last hour. That’s why they locked her in after your man entered and they were calling the security!”

“Do they have my wife in there or not?”

“I’m told that they locked her in with two technicians in the MRI lab. Some other guy named Taylor is there now asking for your wife.”

“Let Taylor in!” I shout at the doctor.

“Taylor, are you there?”

“Hang on a minute…” he says and the voices turn into shouts.

“Taylor! Taylor! What the hell is going on?” I start breathing heavily.

“Mr. Grey, the receptionist says that there’s an altercation between your men, the security and couple of unnamed individuals,” Dr. Singh reports as her ear is glued to the phone, her eyes wide, unbelieving.

“Where the hell is the Diagnostics?” I ask. Nurse Nora gives me a detailed map and she wisely says nothing for a change. I run full speed and Sawyer who is waiting outside of the doors to Ana’s unit looks up and sees me running, and follows.

“I heard,” he says tapping his ear piece. By the time we make it to the Outpatient Center, we can see the police cars and one frowning Detective Clark. Taylor follows two men who are handcuffed and the cops are interviewing a bloody nosed hospital security.

Taylor’s shirt is partially untucked, but other than that he doesn’t have a scratch on him.

“Ana?” I ask.

“She’s inside. There are nurses with her, and she’s being cared for,” he says, and I notice the smashed Nikon camera.

“Did you check their person? Cell phone or any other item?”

“Yes. They’re all in police custody, and I’m sure they’ll collect this as evidence. Mrs. Grey is inside the lab. They will take her back to her room immediately,” he says. When he sees my expression on my face, he continues.

“She was never in danger, sir. She was in the lab, being tested the entire time. The rooms are locked and the staff noticed that those two fuckers were paparazzi. At least the hospital did one thing right: They warned their staff to be vigilant against paparazzi and reporters.”

The hospital Director makes his way towards us nervously in quick steps.

“Mr. Grey! I’m sorry for this incident, sir. We’ve tried to take the necessary precautions as soon as we were informed of the reporters and paparazzi and…”

“Do you realize that my unconscious wife’s security was compromised?”

“We assure you sir, we will do everything in our power to ensure Mrs. Grey’s privacy and security-“ starts a woman in a smart business suit in her late 30s.

“Who the hell are you?”

“I’m Marilyn Beaumont. I’m the Director of PR at the Hospital.”

“I don’t want your assurances, promises, or your PR pitch Miss Beaumont. What I want is real security. From now on, I want to accompany my wife in every room she’s taken even if it is the surgery room, and I want my security team to have access to all paths, ins and outs of the places my wife is to be taken. I want you to search every staff member who has had access to my wife’s care to have their cell phone memory checked. Because if I find one grainy image of my wife that might even resemble her in even a kiddie paper, I swear to everything that is Holy, I will sue the shit out of this hospital!” I hiss menacingly. Both the director of PR and the Hospital Manager turn white as ghosts.

“We are ready to move Mrs. Grey back to her room. I’m sure you’d want to go with her, sir,” says one of the technicians who wheeled her out earlier.

“Mr. Grey, I’m sorry –“ starts Clark cutting my way.

“Not now, Clark!” I hold my hand.

“I need a statement!”

Taylor cuts his path. “Mr. Grey said not now, Detective. He’s accompanying his wife back to his room.”

“Alright. Tomorrow then!” he says with a promise in his voice.


*****  *****

Love is a fire that burns unseen,
a wound that aches yet isn’t felt,
an always discontent contentment,
a pain that rages without hurting,

a longing for nothing but to long,
a loneliness in the midst of people,
a never feeling pleased when pleased,
a passion that gains when lost in thought.

It’s being enslaved of your own free will;
it’s counting your defeat a victory;
it’s staying loyal to your killer.

But if it’s so self-contradictory,
how can Love, when Love chooses,
bring human hearts into sympathy?

Luís de Camões

“Mr. Grey, your wife is doing well. There’s nothing to worry about. Her one hour stay away from her room didn’t compromise her well-being, because she was being cared for on the hospital grounds.”

“You’ll excuse me if I have a hard time believing in that statement doctor.”

“I understand your concern as a loved one…” she says pausing. The understatement of the century: concerned as a loved one.

“I have her scan results sent here, and I will show the findings,” she says. Her laptop screen livens up as she moves her mouse. Then she double clicks an icon and finds my wife’s name in the list. Then she opens it.

“We’re looking at Mrs. Grey’s brain here. When a patient has a cerebral contusion, that patient has a bruise in his or her brain tissue. She point to a region of her head where she fell.

“In this region she’s suffered some small blood vessel leaks into the brain tissue, and our main concern was blood clots. But we’ve examined her brain thoroughly and we are still confirming that there’s no swelling in her brain tissue and she’s showing signs of progress.”

“What are you giving her to help aid her healing?”

“We are trying to help her body heal itself naturally. Because generally contusions are likely to heal on their own without medical intervention. But what we are giving her is fluids and vitamins for her and the baby, and the pain medication to manage her pain—“ she says and my eyes widen. She smiles.

“Don’t worry Mr. Grey. It’s not harmful to the baby. This is another reason we are only using the absolutely necessary medication. We want to care for your baby’s well-being as well.”

“Thank you Doctor Singh.”

This is the longest day of my life, and by far the worst. I want to leave it behind me; I want my wife back, healthy, smiling and happy. 

When the doctor leaves her room, a male nurse comes and checks Ana’s vitals and leave. I sink back into the chair next to Ana’s bed and start keeping vigil next to her. In the matter of another hour, the nurse comes back in again, examines her vitals, and checks various parts of her body under the hospital gown. Then as he leaves, he says, “I will turn the lights down since it’s late. It’s better for the patient as well, sir,” he says, and dims the lights after I nod. When he’s gone I take the coffee Taylor brought from the local coffee shop and take a sip as I watch my Ana in the semi darkness. The only sounds in her hospital room are the ones from the machines.  Ana remains in her bed motionless. Not a single toe or finger or eyelid moves. I lean in and move the hair fallen onto her face. Nurse Nora cleaned her body from dust and dirt after she was taken into her room, giving her a sponge bath. I put the coffee cup back and lean into her.

“I really miss you baby… Please come back to me,” I whisper. Giving her a gentle kiss, I sit back and hold her hand, placing kisses all over it. “I love you Ana. I don’t know how to express the intensity of my love for you sometimes. It is so overwhelming, it hurts. If I loved you any more, I don’t think I could function under normal circumstances. And… and my greatest fear has always been was losing you. Losing you to someone else who could be normal with you, or to something I’ve done in the past, or something I do to you or even to our baby.

Sleeping at Last – Turning Page

And today…” I say closing my eyes trying to dam the tears behind, “I thought I lost you for good because I was an ass with the way I reacted to the pregnancy. My greatest fear became my biggest nightmare. Just as I got a glimmer of hope… maybe, just maybe, you weren’t leaving me, I found you on the cold concrete, motionless, lifeless, and something in me died. My last shred of humanity vanished. You see Ana, there is no me without you!  I can’t exist in a life where you are not a part of my day, where you’re not a part of a single hour of my life. You revived me when you met me, baby. I didn’t know I wasn’t living. You gave me life! You see baby, that’s why you have to live: for me and Junior. I’m ready to share you now. Just don’t leave me…” I say and realize that her hand I’m holding is soaked in my tears.

There’s gentle knock on the door. I lift my head up to see who is coming in. It’s my Dad. One look at my face and he knows how shattered I am.

“Jesus Christ, son!” he says and makes his way towards me.

“Hi,” I say standing up, but he opens his arms, and holds me in a bear hug, kissing my temple. When he releases he holds his hands over my biceps and examines my face.

“I’m sorry, Christian. I really am very sorry for Ana, for Mia, for you and your mother. Seeing you, my resilient son, broken like this is going to haunt me for a long time. What can I do, son? Tell me. Let me do something for you and Ana. I think you are very tired, exhausted. A good night’s sleep would help you. Go home, take a shower, and sleep a few hours. I’ll wait with Ana.”

“I’m not leaving her,” I say unyielding.

“Christian, you should sleep.”

“No, Dad. I want to be here when she wakes up.”

“I will sit with her. It’s the least I can do after she saved my daughter,” he says and for the first time I fully remember that my sister is too in the hospital.

“How’s Mia?” I ask with concern.

“She’s groggy… scared and angry. It’ll be a few hours before the Rohypnol and the other drugs that were administered to her are completely out of her system.”

“Christ.”

“I know. I’m feeling seven kinds of foolish for relenting on her security. You warned me, but Mia is so stubborn. If it wasn’t for Ana here…” my dad says his voice breaking, as he reverentially watches Ana’s motionless body.

“We all thought Hyde was out of the picture. And my crazy, stupid wife--- Why didn’t she tell me?” I lament in utter torment. Why? Why? Am I that hard to approach? Was she that angry with me that she didn’t want to talk to me about a life threatening danger? About Jack Hyde! Why wouldn’t she ask for my help? I’m dying with the agony of it. I could have lost her and our baby. In losing her, I would have lost me. I am strong that I wouldn’t die, but I would be tormented till the end of my life. How could I live with my soul in grave?

“Christian, calm down. Ana’s a remarkable young woman. She was incredibly brave,” my dad says.

“Brave and headstrong and stubborn and stupid,” I utter between my suffocating sobs that I try to push down.

“Hey…” my dad murmurs his hand in my hair. “Don’t be so hard on her, or yourself, son… I’d better get back to your mom. It’s after three in the morning, Christian. You really should try to sleep. You look beat son. This has been a day of realizations… Go to sleep, start the day fresh,” he says and hugs me.

I sink back in my chair, and as I hold Anastasia’s hand, I drift into an uneasy sleep.


*****  *****

Someone turns the lights on early in the morning. I blink and try to sit up in my chair stretching. My arms and legs are sore. As soon as I remember where I am, I find myself calling for Ana.

“She’s right here, Mr. Grey. I’ll check her vitals, empty her catheter bag, and give her a sponge bath, and then I’ll be out of your hair. Her doctor will make the rounds in about two hours,” says Nora as she continues with her tasks. She replaces the IV bag, checks her monitors and completes other tasks.

Taylor comes in with breakfast for me.

“Thank you Taylor,” I say. He nods.

“How is Mrs. Grey sir?” he asks with his voice taking a hard edge. He shifts foot to foot and then clears his throat. “Gail, Sawyer, and Ryan want to know.”

“She looks the same. But last night the doctor said she was improving. I just want her to wake up.”

“I’ll tell ‘em,” he says, and as his hand reaches the door handle he stops. He’s struggling to say something.

“Spit it out, Taylor. You helped rescue my wife and sister.”

“Here it goes, then... I am very angry at Mrs. Grey for pulling this shit by herself! Facing that mother fucker and his bitch accomplice. For not coming to us… We could have avoided… " he says and pauses. "...Sawyer was devastated, and angry at her and at himself for having been tricked twice. He’s holding himself responsible for Mrs. Grey being in the hospital.”

“I’ll talk to Sawyer. My wife is stubborn, and mulish when it comes to her way of thinking. Anything else?”

“Yes. They told me to speak on their behalf. We’re all very, very happy that she’s well and on the mend,” he says without turning to face me, his voice soft. I know exactly how he feels. My wife has conquered the hearts and minds of all my staff. She’s managed to piss them off royally, and worry them to death at the same time.

“Oh. Welch told me to tell you that the money recovered from the crime scene has been held as evidence, and it will be released today. He will take it back to bank unless you don’t want him to. They’ve already fingerprinted Mrs. Grey’s Blackberry and it has only her fingerprints, so that’s been returned. I have it here with me. And just I was coming here, her dad called her, but I didn’t answer. I thought you’d like to know.”

“I haven’t told him yet, but he’s a floor down from here. Do me a favor. I don’t want to leave Anastasia. Go see Mr. Steele and briefly explain him what happened, and tell him Ana’s in the same hospital. I’m sure he would want to come and see her. I would go and talk to him, but I just don't want to leave Ana’s side. Apologize for me.”

“Yes, sir,” he says and leaves.

Now comes the task of informing Ana’s mom. Georgia is three hours ahead of Seattle. I’m sure she’s already up. I take a deep breath, and dial.

“Hello?”

“Hi Carla. It’s Christian,” I say.

“How nice to hear from you Christian! How are you?”

“I’m…” how am I? Devastated, aged fifteen years overnight, broken, hurt, unstable, still in love with my wife who is currently fighting for her life, and about to be a dad which is scaring the shit out of me. “I’m okay, Carla.” Start it and get over it! I remind myself.

“How’s Ana?”

“That’s why I called you. Ana’s in a hospital.”

“What? What’s wrong with my baby?”

“She was kidnapped yesterday, and we’ve rescued her. She’s in a hospital in Seattle right now.”

“Oh my Lord! I’m coming to Seattle!” she shouts crying.

“Mrs. Adams… Carla… You don’t need to do that. And if Ana sees you so upset, it’ll make it harder for her to heal. She’s fragile right now.”

“Can I talk to her, please?”

“I wish you could, but I’m afraid not. She’s still unconscious. I’ll update you on her condition when there is something new. The doctors said that she’s on the mend. Her body needs this downtime to rebuild.”

“Can you make absolutely sure that those doctors do everything in their power to heal my baby?” she asks between sobs.

“I promise, Carla.”

“Take care of my baby, Christian.”

“I will.”

I hear a scuffle outside Ana’s door, and an ornery man arguing with a nurse.

“Sir, you must remain in your wheelchair! You’ve been in an accident!” his nurse chides.

“Is my daughter behind this door or not?”

“Yes, she is Ray,” I answer him. “Bring his wheelchair in nurse.” She nods repeatedly as if her off switch is broken while she’s dreamily gazing at me. I don’t think I can look deserving of that reaction since I slept in my day old clothes and I’m completely disheveled.  

“Taylor told me of the stupid shit she pulled! I’m so damn angry with her stubborn attitude. She could have been killed!”

“She nearly did!”

“Why would she try to play the hero on her own instead of coming to you? Didn’t she have any  care for her life? Didn’t she think what it would do to you, to me, to her MOTHER which I’m sure I’ll be hearing an earful soon!”

“She didn’t come to me… I thought she was leaving me. I didn’t know it otherwise until we heard that Hyde, the man who kidnapped her was released on bail.”

“Christian I’m sorry! I've aged within the last thirty minutes! I’ve nearly had a heart attack! She’s my only child! She’s my little girl!” he says squeezing the branch of his nose to halt his tears. He opts for anger, because anger is easier to deal with.

Ray half raises his body off the wheel chair, and holds his right index finger to make a point.

“Christian! I’m so damn angry at Ana right now, if you don’t take her across your knee, I sure as hell will. What the hell was she thinking?” he shouts.  His remark surprises me. My eyes brighten for the first time since we had a fight.

“Trust me, Ray, I just might do that.”

“Mr. Steele, you are getting your blood pressure up. How about you come and visit your daughter this evening? And besides, I hooked you off some of your monitors. Your doctors may not be very happy about it, sir,” says his nurse nervously.

“Alright! I don’t want you to get in trouble, just as long as you get me back here tonight,” Ray replies.

“Keep me posted on her condition, Christian,” he says in a grave voice.

“I will. You go take care of yourself now.”

*****  *****

“You have some delivery here,” says a bright cheerful candy striper who looks like a retired teacher. “Let’s see here. This lovely bouquet is for Mrs. Grey…” she says and deposits pink roses. She goes back to her cart and checks, then finds more flowers and puts them on various spots in the room.

“She nearly emptied her cart! They must really love her!” she cheers. “Have a good day!” she says and someone opens the door for her as I give her the semblance of a smile.

“Mr. Grey,” says Detective Clark. Taylor stands at the door with an impassive face, his feet apart, his hands clasped on his back. But I know that look that says, ‘do you want me to throw this asshole out?’ I shake my head imperceptibly.

“I… uhm… was hoping I could speak to Mrs. Grey,” he says. Taylor gives him the ‘are-you-for-real’ look.

“Detective, as you can see, my wife is in no state to answer any of your questions!” I say angrily.  But what Clark has in his eyes for Anastasia is reverence.

“I know I wanted to see how she was after yesterday. She’s a headstrong young woman, Mr. Grey.”

“I wish she killed the fucker!” I respond. He smiles without disagreeing with me.

“That would have meant more paperwork for me, Mr. Grey…  but then again she would have done service to humankind.”

“What do you mean?”

“I had time to question his accomplice. And Miss Morgan is singing like the proverbial canary. Hyde’s a twisted son of a bitch. He has a serious grudge against you and your father…”

That changes my focus.

“Did she say why?”

“She doesn’t know the ‘why’, but she knows that Hyde's dislike is irrational, violent, and full blown hatred.”

“If the bitch already knew that, and already suspected what Hyde can and did do to my wife and sister, how could she be a part of his mad scheme? Had she not a shred of humanity, compassion left in herself?” I hiss.

“Hyde was blackmailing her. She said that she succumbed to his charms a few years ago, and he had hard core, deviant, and rough sexual relationship with her, and recorded everything. But there's more. The kind of shit he’s done to her and with her isn’t the kind you want to write home about. If she didn’t cooperate, he was going to mail all her bondage, and multi-partner sexual acts to all the employees at SIP and distribute online for free. She panicked and feared him so much that she obeyed everything he ordered her to do!”

“Obeyed? She didn’t have a mind of her own in deciding what is right and wrong? This is not a  consensual sexual act she was committing. This act directly put the lives of two women in grave danger.  This was a crime!"

“I know that Mr. Grey. That brings up my earlier suspicion. The one I mentioned you and Mrs. Grey in Portland. In light of what Miss Morgan has revealed, we are going to call his former PAs again for an interview.  Hyde won’t be able to talk for a while,” he says as he looks at me significantly. “But I am really looking forward to what he has to say. Mr. Grey, I am very glad that you didn’t kill him. I would hate to take you in for involuntary manslaughter while you were clearly so distraught.”

“That would still be self-defense considering he kidnapped my wife who is now unconscious, and my sister who is barely coming to herself.”

“I’m happy to report that she’s awake, though still a bit groggy,” he says and opens his notebook.

“Your sister said that Elisabeth Morgan came to her after she was out of the gym and told her that Mrs. Grey was sick at the hospital, and that she couldn’t reach you, and she needed a family member. She didn’t give her time to think, or talk. She was nervous, but now she thinks it was because of the act she was about the commit. And when she entered into Ms. Morgan’s vehicle she was drugged by Hyde. She doesn’t remember anything else until she woke up in the hospital. Taylor said you two were in Portland at the time her kidnapping.”

“Yes.”

“When did you get back…” he asks, and I recount the incidents up until we found Ana and Mia. Clark’s face is grim.

Once the interview is over, he extends his hand. “You’re a very lucky man, Mr. Grey. You found a rare gem in Mrs. Grey. She must really love you to put her life in danger like that, for a member of your family. She also blocked Hyde’s advances towards her at SIP when Miss Morgan or his other assistants I’m betting failed. She’s been loyal to you all the way. Yes, sir. You are very lucky indeed,” he says and leaves.

“What an odd thing to say…” I murmur.

“It’s his way of saying he respects Mrs. Grey,” Taylor replies.


*****  *****

The doctor visited three times already and the nurse four. They’ve done their routine checks, and gave me the same reassurances I’ve been getting all day, but there’s not a single movement from my wife which is killing me. As I pace around the room, my gaze fixed on Anastasia, the door opens softly. My mother sticks her head in.

“Hi, Christian! May I come in?”

“Of course mom,” I reply.

“How are you, sweetheart?”

“As good as can be expected under the circumstances.”

“I talked to Ana’s doctor, and read her chart on my way in,” she says her eyes glinting. “I am to congratulate you! You two are going to make me a grandmother!”

“Oh, mom! I’ve done some terrible things!” I say, my heart is tormented with the agony of what I had said to Anastasia.

“What do you mean, Christian?” she says her voice changing.

“I freaked out when she told me she was pregnant! Instead of falling onto my knees or swinging her around the room with joy, I yelled at her for her incompetence for forgetting her birth-control shot! When she started crying I asked her if she forgot to get the shot or if she got pregnant on purpose…” I say in a pained voice.

“You didn’t!”

"I did. I behaved horrendously!"

“If you apologize to her when she wakes up, she'll forgive you.”

“No, she won’t mom. I fucked up! I walked out on her! I was so angry! You see, my wife didn’t even tell me my sister was in danger, and she attempted to rescue her on her own, because I fucking wasn’t talking to her! I was only communicating with her through Gail or Taylor and Sawyer!”

“What?” my mother says shocked. “What do you mean you weren’t talking?” her voice takes an angry tone.

“I’ve done something I’m not proud of and it will torment me till the day I die, because she won’t forgive me for it.”

“What did you do?” my mother asks forcefully.

“Mom—“ I choke with my sobs.

“Christian! What did you do?” My mom demands.

“I was so angry. So very angry,” I can’t help and the dam breaks lose.

“Hey…” my mom soothes me taking me in her arm which I willingly go.

“I don’t remember being this angry with someone in a…” I can’t think of the time. “…ever,” I finish. “When she said she was pregnant, all my insecurities resurfaced. All the fucking poisonous warnings everyone gave me were floating before my eyes. Dad…with the prenuptial… Elena with love being useless shit!” With Elena’s name my mom holds my face to look at me.

“I walked out on Anastasia. I called Flynn, but he was unavailable. Then I started walking in the streets aimlessly. I found myself at her salon. I didn’t think anyone would be there at that time of the night. There she was locking up,” I say. My mother gives me an admonishing look.

“I had no place to go mom! No one to talk to… Even the man I pay a truckload of money to listen to me wasn’t available to listen. I was drowning, and she was familiar, so we went to a bar for a drink.”

“You could have come to us!” my mother admonishes.

“I didn’t want to be judged. I didn’t want to be told how this could be a scheme by my wife to get my billions! Or I didn’t want to be told how a wonderful dad I would make when I know in reality, I’m shitty, useless…” I say my voice drowning.

“And you thought the woman who took your innocence could provide better comfort to you than your own family?”

“You don’t understand, mom! You’re perfect! A wingless angel! I see no fault in you… None. Then there’s dad. Smart, sane, always have an answer for the world’s problems, and mine. He has never done anything out of the norm, or abnormal. He too is perfect. I couldn’t go to Elliot! He’s never knocked anyone up, and Mia is too inexperienced to comprehend what I’m feeling. I needed someone who knew my flaws and just listen to me vent. In doing so, I hurt my wife! I made a mistake!”

“You told me you’d cut all ties,” my mom admonishes in a quiet voice.

“I know, I said that. But, I didn’t know what I was doing when I walked out on Ana. I had lost all control. I was walking aimlessly. We went for a drink and had a talk.”

“Is that all you did?”

“Yes!” I say fervently. “I love my wife madly, mom! Yes, she drives me crazy like no one can, but she loves me like no one can, and I, her.”

“If you tell me that you told Elena of Ana’s pregnancy as if you were talking of an abomination, I am going to be as angry with you as Ana was! Not only it is private, between you and your wife; but you going to Elena, and talking about her pregnancy in a tone that is hurtful to your wife, your future child and not to mention to me. It also devalues your relationship with Ana by going to someone she truly dislikes!”

“I didn’t tell her of the pregnancy mom… I only said Ana wants us to have a baby; even that I regret saying. I needed the closure, the finality… And, seeing her finally put it all in perspective for me. Something everyone said, but I didn’t get. You know… with the child. For the first time I felt… What we did… it was wrong,” I say hanging my head.

“What she did darling… Children will do that to you. Make you look at the world in a different light.”

“She finally got the message… and so did I… I hurt Ana,” I whisper.

“We always hurt the ones we love, darling. You’ll have to tell her you’re sorry. And mean it and give her time.”

“She said she was leaving me,” I sob my soul crumbling again.

“Did you believe her?”

“At first, yes.”

“Darling, you always believe the worst of everyone, including yourself. You always have. Ana loves you very much, and it’s obvious you love her.”

“She was mad at me.”

“I’m sure she was. I’m pretty mad at you right now. I think you can only be truly mad at someone you really love.”

“I thought about it, and she’s shown me over and over how much she loves me… to the point of putting her own life in danger.”

“Yes, she has, darling.”

“Oh, Mom, why won’t she wake up?” I ask in despair, tears streaming. “I nearly lost her,” I say as I bury my head into her shoulder as she hugs me.

“She will wake up when her body is healed enough, darling. She has no swelling which is a huge plus. Her last MRI scan shows significant improvements. She can wake up anytime. It’s up to her body,” she says, giving me relief.

“How about Elena? If I hear you getting near her after all of this…”

“No, mom! I already told you, it’s been over for years. I only want my wife—if she’ll have me,” I say. I don’t want to explain what went down more than I would to Anastasia.

“You will have to work hard to gain her trust back, darling. At times you will get angry, and at other times she will. Every time you are angry with her, you can’t do something that could potentially damage your relationship. How would it make you feel if Ana ran to a former boyfriend?” she asks, and even the idea of Ana being with someone else in the hypothetical is enough to chill my blood.

“I can’t bear it, mom,” I whisper. “I can’t think of my wife with someone else. What if she still wants to leave me? Logically, I know that she won’t, but I can’t shake off the fear…”

“Christian! After all she’s done for our family for your sake I might add, putting herself and her baby in danger, the baby you and she had a fight about, do you think she’s done that so she can leave you? You have to stop your self-deprecation; see what we see in you. Ana, your dad, me, your brother and sister… It’s time you start seeing yourself through our eyes. Since you were four years old, I tried to respect the distance you put between us and the walls you erected. Because, you couldn’t tolerate a simple touch. Do you know what it means to not to be able to hold your child? Not to be able to comfort him when he cried? Just a simple hug, darling... I couldn’t give that to you and we had to learn to love you from a distance. From arm’s length. It’s taken twenty-four years for you to let me hold you like this…” she says and tightens her embrace. I know it’s all been possible because of my wife who taught me to love and to be touched. I can’t imagine a life without her caress, embrace, kiss, warmth and love.

“I know, Mom… I’m glad we talked.”

“Me too, darling. I’m always here. I can’t believe I’m going to be a grandmother,” she says excitedly.

Mom leaves with another hug and kisses, and I go back to my wife, continue my bedside vigil. I hold her hand and squeeze her fingers. I miss her terribly.

“Oh, baby, please come back to me. I’m sorry. Sorry for everything. Just wake up. I miss you. I love you… When nothing is right between us, I’m bent and broken. Past few days’ anguish has been a brutal teacher. Finally helped me to accept that you really love me… Me… This worthless man… I love you regardless of your love for me. If you torment and torture me, tear me to pieces, I will continue to love you as long as I continue to be. You’re in my every thought, in the darkest corner of my soul. You’ve conquered my from cell to cell; you are part of my existence, part of me. Come back to me…”

I kiss my wife as worry and anxiety twisting my heart. Then lean my head onto her bed and arms close to reach her, I go to another restless sleep.

*****  *****

I feel the sensation of someone’s touch in my hair. A gentle, weak caress. It’s fragility startles me; I lift my head suddenly and Anastasia’s hand falls off weakly back onto the bed. She woke up! She touched me!

“Hi,” she says in a weak raspy voice.

“Oh, Ana,” I choke. I clutch her hand, squeezing it tightly, holding it up against my two days old stubbled cheek. That single word is a shot of life for me.

“I need to use the bathroom,” she whispers.

Bathroom. That’s what she wants to do first. She has a catheter. I gape at her in shock, because all kinds of emotions are coursing through me right now like the Jeopardy wheel, and I’ve no idea which one I’m going to land on.  I frown and finally say, “Okay.”

Anastasia struggles to sit up though she is incredibly weak.

“Ana, stay still. I’ll call a nurse,” I stand abruptly, because I don’t want her to fall back to sleep and check out again. I reach for the nurse’s buzzer, and hit it.

“Please,” she begs. “I need to get up.” The second she opens her eyes up, my single minded wife does only what she wants. I don’t know if it’s okay, or even allowable for her to get up. She just needs to wait for the nurse, but of course, those simple rules do not apply to Anastasia.

“Will you do as you’re told for once?” I snap, aggravated. Then the door opens, and Nora bustles in with her jet black dyed hair with her XXL pearl earrings.

“Mrs. Grey welcome back. I’ll let Dr. Bartley know you’re awake,” she says as she makes her way to Ana’s bedside. “My name is Nora. Do you know where you are?”

“Yes. Hospital. I need to pee,” she repeats her request.

“You have a catheter,” Nora tells her. Ana looks at me anxiously, then back to Nora. I know that look. It’s the look that says, ‘I don’t give a shit about what you say. I do what want to do,” but Nurse Nora doesn’t know that yet. She’ll find out.

“Please. I want to get up.”

“Mrs. Grey,” Nora protests. Good luck with that.

“Please,” she presses.

“Ana,” I warn, but my wife struggles to sit up come hell or high water. Nora finally reaches to her breaking point and gives in.

“Let me remove your catheter. Mr. Grey I am sure Mrs. Grey would like some privacy,” she says looking at me pointedly, trying to fucking dismiss me from my OWN wife’s bedside. Nora, you’re already on my shit list from yesterday. Don’t push your luck!

“I’m not going anywhere!” I say and glare at her angrily.

“Christian, please,” Ana whispers as she reaches out, she holds my hand squeezes it briefly, weakly. I squeeze it back, and finally give her an exasperated look. She woke up, not more than five minutes ago, and already wore me out emotionally.

“Please,” she begs again.

“Fine!” I snap and run my hand through my hair exasperated. “You have two minutes, and not a second more,” I warn Nora. Then I lean down and kiss her forehead before leaving the room. As soon as I close the door, I look at my watch and start timing.


Two minutes to the second I burst back into the room, and there’s Nora trying to help Ana out of bed.

“Let me take her,” I say, as I make my way to my wife.

“Mr. Grey, I can manage,” the nurse scolds me. Do not fuck with me today, Nora! I give her a hostile glare.

“Dammit, she’s my wife. I’ll take her,” I hiss through my gritted teeth. I move the IV stand out of my way.

“Mr. Grey!” she protests again, but I ignore her, and leaning down, I gently pick Ana off the bed. She wraps her arms around my neck, and finding her even lighter than she was a few days ago wounds me deeply. I take her to the en suite bathroom while Nora pushes the IV stand.

“Mrs. Grey, you’re too light,” I mutter disapprovingly and gently set her on her feet. But she sways in her place.  Her muscles must be weak. I turn the light on, and she closes her eyes tightly. She’s still standing.

“Sit before you fall,” I bark, while still holding her in place. She finally does.

“Go,” she tries wave me out with a feeble gesture of her hand.

“No. Just pee, Ana.”

“I can’t, not with you here,” she protests.

“You might fall.”

“Mr. Grey!” Nora butts in but we both ignore her.

“Please,” she begs again.

Fine! I can’t take anymore today. I raise my hands in defeat giving in. “I’ll stand outside, door open,” I say and take a few steps back just outside of the bathroom door with a fuming Nurse Nora.

“Turn around, please,” she asks again. Why the fuck is she feeling this way? I fucked her in all manners possible, and here’s she is meeting a simple biological need, and she can’t do it with me around. As soon as I turn around, I hear her let go. Then I hear the water running in the sink.

“I’m done,” she calls as she’s drying her hands on the towel.

I turn and close the distance between us in a few short strides, and pick her up off the floor and hold her in my embrace again. I pause for a minute, and bury my nose in her hair.

“Oh, I’ve missed you, Mrs. Grey,” I whisper, and Nora behind me muttering to herself silently, I take Ana back to her bed, and lay her down, unwillingly. My arms feel empty without her.

“If you’ve quite finished, Mr. Grey, I’d like to check over Mrs. Grey now,” Nora says quite mad. I stand back to give her way.

“She’s all yours,” I reply in a more controlled tone.

Nora huffs and turns her attention to Ana with a softened expression.

“How do you feel?” Nora asks with a lot of sympathy in her voice, and a bit of irritation. It’s funny that she can accommodate us both in the same sentence.

“Sore and thirsty. Very thirsty,” Ana whispers.

“I’ll fetch you some water once I’ve checked your vitals and Dr. Bartley has examined you.”

Nora reaches for the blood pressure cuff, and wraps it around Ana’s upper arm. Ana looks up at me anxiously. When she takes in the tiredness, and haunted expression on my face, she looks worried. Her eyes takes an inventory of my body. My messy hair, unshaven face, well wrinkled shirt. She frowns.

“How are you feeling?” I ask ignoring Nora. I sit down on the bed, a little out of arm’s reach.

“Confused. Achy. Hungry.”

“Hungry?” I blink in surprise. She’s hungry! Hallelujah! She nods.

“What do you want to eat?”

“Anything. Soup.”

“Mr. Grey, you’ll need the doctor’s approval before Mrs. Grey can eat.”

Woman, my wife has been nearly gone out of my life twice within the last few days. Do you think I’ll deny her one request when she came back to me? I take my Blackberry out and dial Taylor.

“Ana wants soup…”

“She does? I mean she’s awake? How does chicken noodle soup sound?”

“Good…”

“I’ll run to Fairmont Olympic to get some then. They have the best chicken noodle soup,” he replies.

“Thank you.”

“My pleasure, sir.”

I hang up and face Nora’s admonishing eyes on me.

“Taylor?” Ana asks to divert my attention. I nod.

“Your blood pressure is normal, Mrs. Grey. I’ll fetch the doctor,” she says as she removes the cuffs and without another word she walks out radiating disapproval.

“I think you made Nurse Nora mad,” Ana observes.

“I have that effect on women,” I smirk. She laughs in response, and stops suddenly. “Yes, you do.”

“Oh, Ana, I love to hear you laugh.”

Nora comes back with a pitcher of water. Both Ana and I keep gazing at each other silently as Nora hands a glass of water.

“Small sips now,” she orders.

“Yes, ma’am,” Ana mutters. Now, why can’t she be that easy to agree with me? My eyes are glued on her, watching intently.

“Mia?” Ana asks after she’s done drinking.

“She’s safe. Thanks to you.”

“Did they have her?”

“Yes,” I reply and she frowns for some reason.

“How did they get her?”

“Elisabeth Morgan,” I say simply.

“No!”

I nod in the affirmative. “She picked her up at Mia’s gym.” Ana frowns again not comprehending the whole picture.

“Ana, I’ll fill you in on the details later. Mia is fine, all things considered. She was drugged. She’s groggy now and shaken up, but by some miracle she wasn’t harmed,” I say with my jaws clenched. “What you did” – I say falling silent, the pain coming back bathing me again, “was incredibly brave and incredibly stupid. You could have been killed,” I say, my eyes chilling with the horror of the idea. But I am angry too. Angry at her for not asking me for help. Not sharing that with me.

“I didn’t know what else to do,” she whispers.

“You could have told me!” I shout emphatically, my hands are fisted in my lap.

“He said he’d kill her if I told anyone. I couldn’t take that risk.”

I close my eyes with the horror of what Jack had intended to do. He didn’t want to release neither one of them. By harming them, he would inflict the greatest harm in me, and wound me beyond repair.

“I have died a thousand deaths since Thursday.”

“What day is it?”

“It’s almost Saturday,” I say after checking my watch. “You have been unconscious for over twenty-four hours.”

“And Jack and Elizabeth?”

“In police custody. Although Hyde is here under guard. They had to remove the bullet you left in him,” I say bitterly. “I don’t know where in this hospital he is, fortunately, or I’d probably kill him myself,” I say my face darkening.

Anastasia pales. Her eyes pool with tears, and a deep shudder goes through her body.

“Hey,” I say, my voice filled with concern as I lean in. I take the glass out of her hand, and then I gently, tenderly fold her into my arms. “You’re safe now,” I whisper against her hair. Her tears start rolling.

“Hush,” I stroke her hair as she weeps into my neck.

“What I said. I was never going to leave you.”

“Hush, baby, I know.”

“You do?” she says shocked.

“I worked it out. Eventually. Honestly, Ana, what were you thinking?” My tone is strained.

“You took me by surprise,” she mutters into my shirt collar. “When we spoke at the bank. Thinking I was leaving you. I thought you knew me better. I’ve said to you over and over I would never leave.”

“But after the appalling way I’ve behaved—“ my voice barely audible. I tighten my arms around her again. “I thought for a short time that I’d lost you.”

“No, Christian. Never. I didn’t want you to interfere, and put Mia’s life in danger.”

I sigh out all my anger, exasperation, and hurt.

“How did you work it out?” she asks.

I tuck a strand of her hair behind her ear.

“I’d just touched down in Seattle when the bank called. Last I’d heard, you were ill and going home.”

“So you were in Portland when Sawyer called from the car?”

“We were just about to take off. I was worried about you,” I say softly.

“You were?”

Why is that such a surprise to her? I frown. “Of course I was.” I skirt my thumb over her bottom lip. “I spend my life worrying about you. You know that.”

Worrying about you, loving you, caring for you. You are the center of my universe. You’re half of my heart.

Half of my Heart – John Meyer


Happy 30th Birthday Christian! (June 18th)

Special thanks to Monica Goyer for contributing Luís de Camões poem!

(the original Portuguese version)


Amor é um Fogo que Arde sem se Ver


Amor é fogo que arde sem se ver,
é ferida que dói, e não se sente;
é um contentamento descontente,
é dor que desatina sem doer.

É um não querer mais que bem querer;
é um andar solitário entre a gente;
é nunca contentar-se de contente;
é um cuidar que ganha em se perder.

É querer estar preso por vontade;
é servir a quem vence, o vencedor;
é ter com quem nos mata, lealdade.

Mas como causar pode seu favor
nos corações humanos amizade,
se tão contrário a si é o mesmo Amor? 

116 comments:

Anonymous said...

Loved it when would the next chapterand would take as long'as this one

Anonymous said...

just one word....Amazing !!! I'll come back when my brain will be ok....kiss. Annalisa

Anonymous said...

Emine,

I look forward to your posts like nothing else! This scene was my favorite in the series and you definitely did it justice.

Thank you!

Can barely wait for the next posting!! Take care...

S

annie7632 said...

Emine...

I am glad to hear that your mother's illness was caught early and that she is receiving treatment, my prayers are with you all....

WOW!! You have done a great job on this chapter, CG's interaction with his family and his security staff is spot on...

Take care, hugs to you and your family xxx

Claire Jolly said...

This was a fantastic chapter Emine, i couldnt stop reading, got to the end of the chapter and let out a breath i didn't know i was holding!
Wow so much happened at the hospital it was fantastic finding out the different conversations that they had while Ana was sleeping. And all the drama with the press oh my goodness its no wonder Christian was exhausted!
Its getting very exciting now with all of the investigating that Welch is doing although we know the outcome im sure that Christian only told Ana some of the results.
Then we get to the big blank of the pregnancy and the arrival of baby number two. so much for us to look forward too.

I hope your mum is doing well, sending all of my love her way.

I have been rather ill this past week. Was in hospital for most of it so i was very grateful for the pdf that you sent me, it kept me occupied so thank you very much indeed.

Love and hugs

Claire from Highlands Scotland xxx

Anonymous said...

Fantastic thank you, carnt wait for the next one

Anonymous said...

Amazing! It was worth waking up at 4 am :)

-lara

mnm92275 said...

Wow!!! Just to feel the sadness in his thought had me in tears!! You did a amazing job!! I am glad that they will be able to take care of your Mom and I will still light a candle and say a prayer for her until she is all better!! Just so you know Tuesday is my favorite day of the week right now because of you lol!! Have a great week!!! Melinda <3

Anonymous said...

Ya h!!! :-)

mnm92275 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Again amazing! I didn't want to stop reading. You've really capture the anguish Christian felt as she lies in the hospital bed. Out of curiosity, it's mentioned how both Taylor and Sawyer while concerned are both angry at Ana. Do you see them having a heart to heart with her when she's recooperated and ready to go back to work or is on her own again without Mr. Grey? Great Chapter! Looking forward to the next one Thanks! ChristinaG

Penny Brueggemann said...

Another great chapter....just too short. Your writing is .....words fail me! With everything that goes on in one's life, and you have had your share, thank you for the gift of your writing that gives so many of us something to look forward to. Thank you....you are amazing! Good luck to your Mom and glad your daughter is better too. Have a wonderful day. Your biggest fan from the Mid-West!

Chrysoula Gk said...

God, just amazing! One of the best chapters you've written for sure!! Great work, as always, dear!

jeangb said...

Fan,bloody,tastic on the edge of seat stuff, again! You do us proud.
Thankyouxx
Hows your mum hope shes ok.

Chrysoula Gk said...

God, just amazing! One of the best chapters you've written! Excellent work, as always, dear! <3

jeangb said...

Ps I hope Sawyer asks Ana why she didn't confide in him while he was driving her to Escala. It's always puzzled me. Jack couldn't have heard her in the car.

Anonymous said...

Olá!!! descobri esse site por acaso quando procurava na net algumas coisas sobre 50 tons, pois não me conformava de ficar sem Cristian e Ana. Ameiiiiiiiiiiii seu site li todas suas publicações em uma semana e aguardo anciosamente suas publicações semanais, como se fosse parte de mim. Muitissimo obrigado por escrever tão perfeitamente para nós amantes de 50 tons. Não me vejo sem seus capítulos e fico torcendo para que você continue escrevendo por muito tempo. Que Deus abençõe você e sua família sempre. Andréia-Brasil -SP

VANESSA BARRASS said...

OMG
Had tears in my eyes reading this. You are fantastic
Thanku for a wonderful chapter.
Xxxxxx

Catarina* said...

Loved! I don't know why but I think that if I talked to some doctor or nurse like Christian, I would be banned from the hospital xD

You are incredible talented my dear, thank you so much for keep doing this and sharing it with us :)

I hope you had good news on your mother, did you? And that everything is ok :)

I had to read it in bits and now I have to go so I'll just repeat that I loved it (as usual!) and that I'm looking forward to the next chapter :)

Love,

Catarina*

Mary Grant said...

Oh Emine, first I'm glad to hear your mother is doing better. I know all too well the pain of losing a mom and I wouldn't wish that heartbreak on anyone.
I Luved this chapter for so many reasons. It answered a lot of curiosities I already suspected but it also gave me more of an insight into the obvious distance created between Christian and the rest of the family by his past and subsiquint coping strategy thanks to Mrs. R. It's obvious he loves them deeply but not knowing love for so long as a child made him strong in a outward physical sence but very weak and frigile inside emotionaly, more than I realized before hand.
I want to Thank You for starting this blog and keeping it going.Although Ionly just recently joined I truly do
enjoy it and can't hardly sit still waiting for the next chapter. Please keep it going as ling as possible. I look forward to getting Gail's POV and seeing how the conversation goes between Taylor and the others. It would be so intetesting if Sawyer became Ana's own version of "Taylor" after things calm down, even if it starts out with him just trying to prove she can trust him to protect and help her like CG trust Taylor so she doesn't feel like she needs to ditch him or do anything like that again.
I hope his week goes a little smoother for you and your family, Thank You again. Looking forward to next week.

mzthang said...

Hi Emine,

Let me first say that i'm happy that the results for your mom were positive and she will be ok.

As for Christian and Ana, you never disappoint. You bring out all the emotions that will have us feeling them too. Thank you for sharing with us.

Looking forward to Welch's conversations with Jack's former PA's.

~hugs from~
Loving your work in the Caribbean.

neves089 said...

Bom dia! Ótimo dia mesmo! Depois deste fantástico capitulo, nossa estou com lagrima nos olhos! Acompanhando a agonia do nosso Cristian a espera da recuperação de Ana e sua intereção com a família, amigos e seguranças, adorei ver a Gail la no hospital com o Taylor muito lindo os dois tb! Nossa fiquei feliz com as boas noticias sobre sua mae! Muito obrigada por mais este capitulo maravilhoso! Musicas perfeitas tb para o momento! Como sempre vc fez uma trabalho impecável! Valeu a espera ! Ansiosa para a próxima postagem!

Donna from DE said...

You are amazing, talented, wonderful, great, so many words I could go on and on. As always you never disappoint and THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU for for sharing your wonderful talent!!! XOXOXOXOXO

Anonymous said...

can't wait for the next posting. I like a good read, and this is by far my best read yet. (Mary George)

Anonymous said...

Hey Emine,im a new reader but i have read all your great work.I mean you are absolutely awesome they way you write the book for me at least in Christian POV is so way better that Anna's pov.You include his feelings so desperate he is for love,how much he loves Ana,how incecure he is although he is the biggest bussiness man in amreica.I love your work,i enjoy reading every chapter,i re-read them again and again.Of course i respect James Elliot who wrote the book but i like your version a lot.
-Vivian

Vicki said...

Amazing, as always! Thanks!

Anonymous said...

Yet agian a brill chapter, like the fact that its a but longer then some other ones. cant wait for next week, it can nevr come quick enough

xxxx

Monica Goyer said...

Thanks Emine! I love to read your posts...
I hope your mother is ok!
I cant wait for a new chapter.......

You made me so happy , when I saw the poem of Luiz de Camões( The people at my work think I am crazy, because I was smiling alone).

Porto Alegre- Brazil.

Mary Grant said...

I'm supposed to be working but I can't stop reading and looking for clues as to how the story is going to move forward. I want see how he slowly grows to accept the baby more and more and how they tell everyone else. I'm really looking forward to how the house looks once they are done and her beging stages of labor. There are so many different sides to the story and ways it could go forward from his POV. I mean we now where it all ends but how they get there is wide open for your wonderful talent to explore. I feel like a kid right now just waiting for the next present to open. Amazing Job as always .....

MelissaLim said...

that's a great chapter!
Thank you very much.
Can't wait for the next one already!!

Love from Singapore.

MelissaLim said...

Thank you so much for this chapter!
I love it!
Looking forward to the next one.

Love form Singapore.

j.farmer2 said...

Emine,

I was bummed because today is my 40th birthday (the day after Christian's):). But then I found a new chapter and what a chapter it is. Thanks for making my birthday brighter.

Have a great day, and I look forward to next week.

Janda

sonu burman said...

Hi everyone! Wishing all of you a good day wherever you are.

Hi Emine, I am so happy to hear your mom's tumor was detected early and that her treatment has been started.Wishing her all the luck!!!


Emine, you wrote this chapter in such detail that I could feel all the emotions that CG was experiencing.I loved Christian letting down his barriers around his mom.

I loved Taylor the spokesman.I was thinking does Gail respects Christian as an employer or does she have motherly feelings for him since she has seen so many aspects of him that he has hidden from his family. Just a thought!

We are nearing the end of E L James' creation and I can not wait to see where you take us from there.
Hugs and kisses!

Anonymous said...

loved it.... thank u.

Diana said...

Hello Emine,
I just finished reading the last chapter and am still teary eyed!!! OMG!!!!! What an emotional roller coaster you've allowed us to travel with you.
I always have a need to read each chapter twice and I always appear to get more meaning each time. I cannot express how much I enjoy & love following your Blog, I'm addicted to it ;-)
I love the your flow when you put Pen 2 Paper.....amazing results!! I admire the gift you continue to share with us followers.. Thank you and I look forward (anxiously) to the next chapter!!!!
Please keep the emotionally charged writing coming as I continue to read & enjoy......Until the next chapter.........
Sincerely,
Diana

Diana said...

P.S. I wanted to add that the all the scenes were all special & nail biting which left me with raw emotions that I found to be overwhelming!! You never let up from the start of this Chapter to finish of this Chapter!! The energy in the hospital scenes were amazing!!! Even though Ana was involved in these terrible ordeals, I had a hard time reining in my heartbeat!!
You were so specific that i was in total awe as I read then entire Chapter!!!
I love the length of this and I pray that the future scenes as you move forth in the chapters to come are just as long if not longer...thanks bunches,
Diana

Anonymous said...

Ola Emine, como sempre, muito bom.
Não sei quem é Monica Goyer, mas ainda bem que sugeriu o poema de Luís de Camões e a Emine aceitou.
Muita gente a expressar-se em português no seu blog, o que significa que o Brasil, Angola, Moçambique, Guiné,Cabo Verde e obviamente Portugal estão a levar a lingua por este mundo fora. Não quer colocar a versão original portuguesa do poema, como fez, em alturas anteriores, salvo erro com poemas de Pablo Neruda?
Parabens uma vez mais e vá pensando como nos levar a passear nas nuvens quando acabar o POV do Christian. Um abraço. Micá

Claire Jolly said...

Oh my goodness! Any British people who watch the apprentice? If not i shall enlighten you, there is a man who has just described himself as the Christian Grey of the vallies (vallies being Wales)

this man would like to believe he is good at business and good looking however..... Eeek he is neither.

It is my husband who watches the programme but as soon as i heard the name Christian Grey the remote was mine and i was going back to see what the context they were discussing. Killing myself laughing now Hehe

very random however wanted to share this with you all,

Claire Scotland xxx

Anonymous said...

Hi Emine! You are a truly wonderful writer. This chapter was even better than I expected. Thank you for adding the song Turning page by Sleeping at Last, I think it's a perfect song to describe Christian's way of thinking! Thank you thank you thank you!

Jenfer said...

Emine,

I am actually crying! God Lord, lady! This was super fantastic!!! Although I knew it would be!! :)

Love & Laters,

Jennifer

Alfonsa Raffaele said...

ciao Emine, per prima cosa vorrei ringraziarti per quello che fai nonostante i problemi che hai con tua mamma, spero vada tutto per il meglio. Questo capitolo è come sempre carico di profonde emozioni, sai rendere palpabili le emozioni di Christian e lo hai reso così dolce, mi è piaciuto l'inserimento del colloquio con kate, mi sono sempre chiesta cosa avesse detto a Christian quando Ana era in ospedale...GRAZIE per quello che fai..... aspetto con ansia di rileggerti martedì prossimo.

Shanon Axtell said...

Hi Emine--
I think this may have been your finest chapter yet. Your attention to detail was great, and added so much to the drama from the original book. Wonderful job. Blessings, Shanon.

Daniela Martins said...

Hi, Emine! You're always write perfect things! Each chapter is a new emotion! You're a wonderful writer and I have no more words to say about you! You're great...you're amazing! You're perfect. You're talented....thanks for share with us this books!
Love
Dani

Ediene O Maia said...

Emine oi !!!
Que capitulo maravilhoso, eu amei cada palavra que você escreveu estou sem palavras. Muito obrigada, Obrigada mesmo, Você é uma pessoa maravilhosa, e mais uma vez obrigada por dividi o seu talento e dom que deus te deu com nosco a cada escrita que você escreve sobre o CG e Ana. Eu sofri muito com o Christian, eu gostei também da preocupação de Taylor e toda equipe de Christian, seus pais, o pai de Ana.
Beijos!
ps: ontem eu estava no hospital fazendo exames e tomado medicamento na veia, enquanto eu esperava pelo resultado dos exames eu já sabia que ia ficar internada porque o médico tinha me falado, quando o medico me deu o resultado ele falou que eu tinha que realmente ficar internada não sabia o que fazer , eu estava fazendo tratamento de uma infecção e acabou atingindo o meu rim. Você sabia que eu estava preocupada porque eu não iria ler o capitulo três da história de Christian e da Ana. Olha a minha loucura então eu pedi pro médico me liberar, então ele me liberou, se eu continuasse sente dor era para volta, então eu vou voltar na quinta-feira que e amanhã pra fazer outros exames. E provável que desta vez eu fique no hospital.

Ediene O Maia said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Yet again I loved this chapter. Always the highlight of my week and never fails to cheer me up. Thankyou emine. Can't wait for the next chapter

Lucy in the UK

Patricia said...

Hi Emine,

I am totally hooked on your blog. You are an amazing writer and you can convey the feelings just as we had imagined them.

Will Christian visit his sister while at the hospital? I know that he is super worried about Ana, but he loves his sister, isn't he worried about her? Espeialy now that Ana has wken up. I remember he goesvto change and wash, maybe then he can go see Mia.

Hope your Mom is better.

Patricia

Anonymous said...

Another Ace Emine! Loving it as always. Hope the Pella series is still going well and hoping to read it later this year.
<3
Theresa
(Qld) (Aus)

Sharise in OKC said...

OMG! I just can't get enough! I get so excited with anticipation waiting for each new chapter. Thank you so much for your amazing writing. Glad to hear your Mom is better. Prayers for you your family and Mom.

Anonymous said...

Hello Emine

My thoughts are still with you, your mom & your family *hugs & prayers*

I actually had to read this update twice there was just so much emotion flowing through it I wanted to make sure I didn't miss a thing.

First I want to focus on all the supporting players in this update. Taylor, Gail (C&A's extended family) Carrick, Grace, Elliot, Kate and Ray. Their love and support really made this chapter something special. You could feel the bond that CG has with them and their bonds with C&A. Thank you so much for adding all those details for us. They really do make the story that much stronger.

Next Christian. Oh his heartache was so sad. I wanted to hug him. Him breaking down with Grace was exactly what I needed to see. I am nervous about the convo Christian and Ana have about this talk. One part never sat right with me in the book (his explanation) so I am very curious to see how you write it and if that will change my mind.

And his soul awakened! I was wondering if that would be in this update and thank you for putting in part of it!! I don't know if I would of been able to wait for it. LOL.

Fantastic work my dear :)

-Vee

Anonymous said...

Always, always so good.

Angela said...

Dear Eminé ,
This is the sweetest declaration of love i ve ever heard!!!! It's too much and every woman dream of it !!!!
I love the way Christian speaks to his parents and family but more to his mother she is very special i love her!!!
I love Christian controll freak !!! I love him i love him so much!!!
I love you Eminé you are very very special!!!!!:-)
I love taylor and gail they are very tender!!!!
You left me hanging another time but i'll wait !!!!!!
Xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx. Angela (happy for your mom and pray for her)X

EPFlaig said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
EPFlaig said...

Another amazing chapter! Thank you for sharing your awesome talent with us!

j.farmer2 said...

I noticed that Christian keeps referring to the baby as 'Little Blip', but Ana doesn't tell him that she calls it that until they are in the field at the new house...after the hospital.

Just an observation,

Janda

Anonymous said...

Absolutely wonderful chapter. It's funny even though I know the ending, it still makes me weep. You bring the character of Christian to life for me in your story. Excellent work. When will the next one be due?? Fiona

Poliana Santos said...

Love it ... you are portuguese? Because i live in portugal 16 years and love .... now i back to brazil camoes its amanzing beautiful ..

Marielle said...

Oi Emine.

Quero agradecer mais uma vez, por mais um capítulo maravilhoso que você fez.
Talvez este capitulo fosse o que eu mais esperava e com certeza você não me decepcionou, ele está perfeito!
Gosto muito desta versão de Cristian que você faz.
Obrigada
Marielle (Brasil- #ogiganteacordou)

sarah said...

Hi Emine!! Thank you again for another fantastic chapter!! You are simply brilliant and I'm so glad you are carrying on with the story.

Thank you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sheila H said...

I loved this part in FSOG and from Christians pov it is even better. Thank you Emine, brilliant writing as always and such a pleasure to read.

Jennifer Fermin said...

Omg loved the chapter can't wait for the next one

Carol said...

What a beautiful chapter showcasing the beautiful love Christian has for Ana. "I didn’t know I wasn’t living. You gave me life! You see baby, that’s why you have to live: for me and Junior. I’m ready to share you now. Just don’t leave me…” I say and realize that her hand I’m holding is soaked in my tears." Such profound words written by you Emine. I am in tears here!!! I especially enjoyed the dialogue between Grace and Christian. Mother and son have a unique bond that only they two can understand. Thank you for this chapter!! Have a good day. Love, Carol

Carol said...

Dear Emine, I am so glad that they caught your mom's tumor in time. Our prayers have been answered. We are your loyal followers as well as your friends and we are here for you. Love, Carol

Anonymous said...

The last few chapters are amazing! So much clear information. I love it!

When are you planning to update the Pella series???

And I hope your mom is doing well, too. I lost my mother 3 years ago this week and I miss her every day.

Linda

Monica Goyer said...

Hi Emine, This week I saw one little history (gift for Christian) in site da E.l. James..
...I don´t know if you saw.......
maybe you can to use in future


link =>http://blog.eljamesauthor.com/?p=671

Eminé Fougner @ Cowboyland said...

Hi Anonymous x5, Annalisa, S, Annie, Claire, Melinda, Christina, Penny, Chrysoula, Jeangb, Andreia (bem-vindos!), Vanessa, Catarina, Mary, mzthang, Neves, Donna, Mary George, Vivian, Vicki, Monica, Mary Grant, Melissa, J.farmer2, Sonu, Diana, Mica, Jennifer, Ciao Alfonsa (grazie!!), Shanon, Daniela, Ediene, Lucy, Patricia, Theresa, Sharise, Vee, Angela, EPFlaig, Fiona, Poliana, Marielle, Sarah, Sheila, Jennifer Fermin, Carol, Linda! Thank you!! Obradago! Grazie! ¡Gracias! Dank u wel! Merci!

Mary Grant – I will be sure to put Gail’s POV which should be interesting. She’s a gentle soul :)

Micah – per your request, I put the original Portuguese poem as well. Monica is one of the Brazilian readers.

Ediene – I hope you’re feeling better. I don’t want you to have health problems because you’re rushing to read the blog. It’ll be here when you get home. Just get well <3

Patricia – Yes, CG will visit his sister. It’s in the works :)

Monica – thank you for the link to CG’s birthday by EL James. That was very sweet!

Pella series is in the works; very busily. Thank you for all your thoughts, prayers for my mom. I really think that you made it easier me and helped her with your prayers.

I am paying it forward, and running to court in Phoenix. A widow doesn’t have a lawyer (not that I am one, but I can help with this particular case, so, I have to be there in an hour). Hugs to you all!



Sharon Evans said...

Hi Emine, you've never heard from me before because this is the first time that I've written in about your blogs. My god girl, you can write! I've been luckier than most of your followers ina sence as I have been able to read them all the way through up until this last posting by you. I have never been so engrossed in a book / piece of written work so much in my entire life ! I' ve laughed till I cried in some of the earlier chapters as Christian 's reactions to Ana 's defiace and he ability to get the better of him seem to leave him totally bewildered. I cried so hard in some places that my face has been swollen for days. I've thumped the table top and shouted at the compter I've been reading this on - especially you stand alone chapters on the bitch troll , Elena, Mrs R peado extrawdinaire , call her what you like. I've even got my friends at the school grounds ( awaiting our kids and grandchildren ) coming out of school. Please please please keep up the excellent work your doing here. Its going to make me so sad when this all comes to an end, some things i would like to see in book four is how christian reacts to Ana's expanding waistline as her pregnancy progesses , a nd hers as we know from the previos books how she doesn't like the thouht of being fat. It will also be interesting to see., when the children are old enough to have thier innoculation against childhood diseases, how Christian will cope with this , or if he will get flashbacks to when Mia was injected with drugs by Jack Hyde .
I loved the chapter on the honeymoon . I always felt cheated in the original books as it was just given lip service and I felt it didn't do the event any justice.the rings section was inspirtional aswasthe meanings behind the flowers for the wedding scenes that you did.
Have yoy ever cosidered making this whole thing into a proper book.? I'd love to have it next to my original books on my book shelves in my bedroom.will write again soon, but I think I'm about to run out of character space.
Much love ans sincerest thought to your family and hope your mum goes from strength to stregth. Bye for now. Sharon Evans. South Wales. U.K.

Anonymous said...

MY TISSUE BOX IS EMPTY!!!
Thank you as always and I hope all is well.
-Kamila

fanny rebellon said...

PORQUE SE DEMORAN EN TRADUCIR AL ESPAÑOL,ASI COMO LAS SIGUE UNO GRACIAS Y DISCULPEN.

cat675 said...

Wonderful

Anonymous said...

Dear emine,
Have reread this chapter. Love, love , love it.
Taylor is turning into the most beautiful character. All your good work..... Can't wait until next week. Still praying for your dear Mumma.
Take care.
Yours Smiling
Kathyxx(Australia)

Ediene O Maia said...

Obrigado Emine!!!
Sim, estou melhor obrigado, eu fui no hospital fazer novos exames é a taxa de infecção estava menor , então eu tomei mas medicamentos na veia, então eu vou termina de fazer o tratamento em casa eu não vou precisar fica internada, eu dei graças a Deus porque não imaginava como ia ficar a minha casa com os meus dois filhos. Mãe sempre se preocupa com os filhos e marido.
Estou feliz por sua mãe estar melhor é que ela começou a fazer seu tratamento, e que sua filha está melhor, estou orando por sua mãe e família.

Nikolina Bujdo said...

Dear Emine,

what more to say? The other girls/women said everything.
Thank you for this amazing, truly amazing chapter.

Drama with Ana and press - wow, I mean, I pictured the whole scene in my head, it was like perfect scene for some thriller movie.

Can't wait to see your next work!

Big regards from Croatia,

Nina

Dani said...

Hi Emine, all chapter is a great surprise to me!!!! it's also exciting to wait to read a new one...

you are very talent and I wish you'd be really famous as a writer !!!!

Nice to read Camoes.

Love from Belo Horizonte/BRAZIL #ogiganteacordou

Daniela

Anonymous said...

hi emine!
just want to ask. do you have a particular moment or chapter in mind when exactly Ana's birth control-shot failed? was it during their honeymoon?
hmmm, i'm curious if you have a particular chapter in mind coz i'd like to read that moment again :)
i hope you don't find my question weird, hahaha!
you are amazing..i'm a fan <3
thanks :)
~ rr

Eminé Fougner @ Cowboyland said...

Hi Sharon♥! Welcome! Thank you so much for your kind words. I love Christian’s character, because he has many emotions. Normal is overrated at times (normal is good. Very good in fact, but a little spice gives a little kick), and his emotions are never dull. Some people are too flat; like a piece of dry toast. We know that life with Christian will never be dull. I will address the wonders of Ana’s pregnancy. Poor man didn’t have time to digest the news and his life nearly shattered with everything that happened. Yes I will definitely write about the first inoculation of the baby. I remember my husband wasn’t able to handle the babies shots (and he’s in medical field – his specialty is sleep disorders). I think it’s harder for parents, and we know how fear takes over him. It’ll be a good chapter to write. As for the book, the characters aren’t mine to publish. So I have not considered it.

Thank you Fanny♥, Cat♥, Kathy♥, Ediene (ficar bem em breve♥), Kamila♥, Nina♥, Dani ♥!

Hi RR! ♥ Ana’s birth control failed in London (after the shaving). Read the chapter in Paris also – because at the time I had already calculated the conception date, and in Paris, she was already pregnant (very new), and first pregnancy most often hits with mood swings. She was already in melancholy.

Diana said...

Hi Janda,
Ana calls the baby, "Lil Blip" after she gains consciousness in the hospital. Her OB labeled the baby Lil Blip & Ana just continued that name...lol
Then when Christian said Junior, Ana said okay Junior it is and he said no he likes Lil' Blip.....
:-)
Diana

Aracely said...

Are you going to write about Sawyer and Ana? its employee-boss relationship was not very good after the issue of the bank and Jack Hyde. The drama with the press was great; the affection and concern shown by the staff towards Anna was touching, I always thought that EL James should give more space in Anna and Christian's life.This chapter left tears in my eyes.♥

Anonymous said...

Dear Emine,

First, I do hope your mum and your daughter are feeling better. Thank you for keeping writing with all your family problems. That's very nice.
I noticed that another "anonymous" is called "S" so from now I'll be "S from France". you've probably noticed that my english is far from being perfect. i live in the French Riviera at just half an hour drive from St Paul de Vence (which is a place I love going to).
Thank you very much and congratulations for this other great chapte. Man! How I cried when Chirstian begs Ana to wake up!
Thank you very much alos, for inlcuded Gail visiting Ana and all the staff being worried about Ana's health. Very good job!
I would love, me also, you write something about Taylor and Sawyer telling to Ana what they think about her behavior as soon as she will be better. But would they dare to do it as she is their "boss" too?
At the end of the E.L James third book,Ana calls Gail "Mrs Taylor". Will you write about Taylor asking Gail to become his wife, and their wedding? When do think he has proposed Gail? I suppose it's just after Ana comes back at home as he realises how much he loves Gail and he doesn't want to loose her...

Well, can't wait to be wednesday morning (at my time) to read the next chapter.

S. from France

Brandy said...

Emine,

I have to say I have found your blog off of Facebook where someone had posted the link to it saying check this out! This is the best Fan Fiction I have ever read! You are such an amazing writer! Thank you for your time and energy of writing such an amazing Christian point of view!I now join in all the others to wait for your blog when you post the next chapters! Thank you so much! I am most definitely a fan of yours!!

Erika M said...

AMAZING! You're POV of Christian's is by far the best! I look forward to it every week and I loved chapter 8 of the Pella series I wish that gets published soon because it will hit #1 for sure! I am heading to Tijuana with my Dad for more treatment and I will for sure be reading your updates while I am there:) I can't live without them haha. With all the flooding we have been having here in Alberta Canada it is just nice to get away and read your stories. And be proud of all you have accomplished and know you have touched so many people with your work. Love ya and still praying for your Mom and hope everyone is feeling better in your home.

Eminé Fougner @ Cowboyland said...

Hello and Thank you Diana, Aracely, S from France, and Brandy!

Aracely – Yes, I will write Sawyer and Ana as well. I think both Ana and Christian are fond of Sawyer. The relationship they had with Prescott wasn’t the same for example. Sawyer and Ryan had been in their service and he’s been doing a good job. So the relationship isn’t strained, but strengthened with this ordeal. Of course they’re all mad at her, in awe of her, and relieved that she’s well. We’ll explore that aspect as well.

S from France – First of all thank you so much for commenting. I knew I had several readers from Côte d'Azur and I was wondering when someone would say hello :) Next time you go to St Paul de Vence, please send me some pictures: eminethe1st@gmail.com I’d love to see some local sites. I would love to explore an episode where Sawyer and Taylor tell Ana how they felt, but it will be after she’s better, because Christian will be very protective of her for a while.
As for Taylor proposing, I think he’s been proposing for a while, and Gail was reserving her reply because his job is dangerous. When we are in the story, we don’t get to see what outsiders see in the persona Christian Grey. He’s wealthy, handsome, and desired, and has rivals, enemies just by being him and having the wealth he has making Taylor’s job very tough. But I will get to that, and it will be great. I think Taylor’s life is very interesting all by itself; his story could be a book on its own, and Gail is the person that softens his rough edges.

Welcome Brandy! I’m so glad you found your way to my blog! Hope we get to hear from you again soon :)

Hi Erica! I hope your dad’s treatment is helping him. I heard about the flooding in Alberta from my sister. It’s cold in winter and rains a lot in summer. Tijuana will be a nice change. It’s very hot down here. I had heatstroke yesterday. We went to see the World War Z in the morning, and when we came back I’ve done some work outside, and later had severe headache. It knocked me out for 16 hours. I vaguely remember my husband making me drink bottles of water throughout the night. I’m better now, but heat still gets to me even though I lived in Arizona for a few years now. Thank you also for your faith in my writing and your prayers for my mom. ♥

Anonymous said...

Another amazing chapter, I look forward to your updates every week xxx

j.farmer2 said...

Diana,
I agree her O.B showed her the ultrasound pic and said it's that little blip right there and pointed to it. lol Ana has been referring to it ever since.

But Christian has been referring to the baby as little blip in his thoughts this whole time and he hasn't seen the pic, or spoken to anyone about it. And is confused when Ana says Blip. He says "Blip? I was thinking of Junior." lol I was just wondering why he has been referring to the baby as blip in his head. that's all.

But thank you for your correction. You'r right it was at the hospital. This is fun. lol :)

Claudia Brandao said...

Olá Emine!
Aqui estou lendo mais uma vez este capítulo. Eu preciso dizer o quanto ele é fantástico! Este capítulo é um dos melhores de toda a sua obra. Chega perto da perfeição para mim. São muitas emoções! Os sentimentos de Christian são tão intensos. A participação de Taylor, Gail e Sawyer é tão especial. Eu adoro essa equipe de seguranças. Sou apaixonada por eles assim como com Christian e Ana.
A autora E. L. James tem todo meu respeito e gratidão por ter criado essa maravilhosa história mas... você tem meu carinho especial por nos dar esse presente. Eu amo a sua versão no POV de Christian ainda mais. Parabéns! Meu sonho é ter isso como um livro em minha estante juntamente com os outros.
Te desejo uma ótima semana,cheia de grandes inspirações... Você faz a nossa alegria a cada semana!
Beijos!

Anonymous said...

Emine, since I read Fifty Shades of Freedom, I always wondered how it would have been a nightmare for Christian, what he saw. Thanks for the clarification. Neusa and you are doing amazing work and beautifully crafted. I'm sure many are worshiping, just like me. Can not wait for the end of the story, how he is feeling, having a family (Especially Ted).
Emine, I have a suggestion for the epilogue of the story (One of the moments which I yearn more) Christian recalling his first encounter with Anna, the electricity that surrounded them at the time and never leave them, the strange feelings he felt and finally the breakup of their dams emotional, and rules through the love he has for Ana I think this could give a special touch to chapter (After all, everyone remembers his past, even though someone like Christian).
Consider this idea, but if you do not plan to write this way, no problem. After all, your story is amazing with their own ideas.

Anonymous said...

I just found your blog about 2 weeks ago, and I can't stop reading! :) I am rereading it while I wait for the next chapter to be posted. Love, love, love reading Christian's POV! I'm constantly checking the blog to see if a new chapter has been posted. Amazing work!

Daisy

Johanna said...

Hi Emine,

Thank you once again for another wonderful chapter. We are so close to the end of fifty shades freed and I am dying to read what you have in store for us for the duration of book 4. I was wondering if you are going to elaborate on the playroom scene at the end of book 3, where Christian tells Ana "your topping from the bottom". We were left hanging in the original books :( Also, I was wondering if I can get your opinion of when you think Christian actually fell in love with Ana. Do you think it was love at first sight? I know he did not accept his feelings for her until after she left him at the end of book 1, but am confused of when he actually fell in love with her even if he did not admit it. I asked this same question last week but never got a response. However, I do understand your very busy and you try to respond to everyone at some point. Thank you again for all that you do for us.

Song suggestion: Bryan Adam's "everything I do, I do it for you" for the scene at the end of freed when Christian is at the piano playing a song. Ana recalls it being a sweet hopeful melody. Just a thought.

P.S. Tuesday is my favorite day of the week thanks to your awesome writing.

Anonymous said...

Omg I loved this chapter....was absolutely amazing your view of christens point of view is great. Looking forward to the next chapter (is there a eta?) :) Katie :)

Eminé Fougner @ Cowboyland said...

Hi Joanna!

I keep forgetting to answer your question. It wasn't intentional. I think Christian was immediately taken by her, he was baited and hooked, but he fell in love with her when she left him at the Heathman's restaurant, the night when the first time he saw her car Wanda. He didn't want her to leave, and when she said no to him (he never got no before). That night is significant for several reasons: She know who he is and what he is. She's very attracted to him, but she is thinking maybe he isn't for her despite and because of her feeling. He realizes that she is holding her own, she can say no to him, and he is even more attracted to her because of it. Of course he sees Wanda and realizes that she's proud as well (even though he prefers her to be obedient, he's realizing that he finds her sexy that way) because she doesn't want his gift of a car. (That's also a sign that she's not after his money). How many women can say no to Christian Grey? She was saying goodbye there and he knew it, and he feared she'd leave.

There is also the night where he spent the whole night watching her in her drunken stupor. I think that's when he began to love her. But we know Christian who is afraid of his feelings (admitting them). But he was completely hooked on to her the night they had dinner and she didn't want to have sex with him at the restaurant.

Topping from the bottom would be a nice segment to write, because Ana is a switch - meaning she can be both dom and a sub; we've seen that in her often later on; because she likes to get her own way in the bed as well. A sub wouldn't ask to get her way without getting in trouble - that's topping from the bottom.

Hi Katie, Daisy, Anonymous (yes I will write about his feelings when he first met her and of course we'll see a lot of him with Ted), Claudia, jFarmer (I think you read the chapter when I first posted, and you are right I forgot and wrote "blip" but I changed it the first thing in the morning when I remembered it, and then I saw your note-thank you; I can count on you all to help me <3 )

good night girls!

Prince50 said...

Emine,

Girl, family and my busy life has kept me from commenting but I had to tell you how much I enjoy coming here and having this time of indulgence. Love the MRI thing. I thought in the book James did not do justice to the media frenzy! You put into context and in proportion to what should have happen with the paparazzi and poor Taylor trying to keep control of it all.

Laters Ladies (and guys who won't admit you read)

Anonymous said...

emine Fantastic it was such a great chapter it made me cry so much. I am so happy you captured his feelings in such a way i am amazed!!!! Loved Loved It. thank you janice I am so glad your moms doing good. My prayers are still with you and your family.

j.farmer2 said...

Hey Emine,
I was thinking about a scene where Ana surprise visits Christian at work for something, I don't know maybe his birthday or something. Anyway we all know Olivia is like "duh" so I can see her correcting Ana when she asks if "Christian" is in and saying "Mr. Grey", is in his office. Do you have an appointment? lol Andrea would flip.

I can also see her showing up with Ted when he's about two and walking and Olivia telling her children aren't allowed before Andrea catches her.

I love Olivia she's so "duh" you can do alot with her.

What do you think? Just a fun thought. :)

Anonymous said...

Eta? :))))))

Aracely said...

Emine,the description of how Christian fell in love with Ana is delicious and melts our hearts, no matter how many times we read it. Thanks,I´m hugging you right now.

Anonymous said...

Its TUESDAY!!! So excited for tonights post of chapter 4.

Anonymous said...

Hi Emine,

I am being beyond sincere when I say WOW!! Damn girl!

Favorite parts: anything Christian of course. His growth and development under your pen has been fantastic. The scene with Taylor and Welsh feels like the beginning of a classic Christian Grey ass kicking for Linc.

The MRI mix up was so exciting. Especially when Christian gives the hospital director/PR the what for. Love CG in control (sexy).

Christian coming to terms with love trumping fear of the baby. So missed that important moment in EL's book. Actually because CG was left so wide open in his journey in the 3 books there was so much room for someone talented like you to come in and give us fans MORE.

The conversation with his Mom...perfect!
And from your beginning with book 1 you have given us a Taylor we could all love and respect as an individual character but in book 3 and now 4 damn. He is beyond wonderful. One of my favorite moments is actually not a CG/AG moment but when Taylor walks out and sees Gail. The intimacy you manage to give us so that I can picture the moment in my mind. God... if Gail doesn't go home that night and say "yes" I will marry you" I will (he he).

We"kind of" know what chapter 4 will be about, the rest of the hospital stay, Ana getting him to talk about the baby, Welch's findings and going home but because you add so, so, so much more depth and detail from all sides not just Christian's, I cannot wait from my favorite Tuesday evening bedtime story. A glass of wine and your words. Have a good day Emine and I am always thinking good thoughts for peace of mind, body and spirt for you and yours.

xo
Gina B.
NYC

Jennifer Fermin said...

When is the next chapter coming out?

Anonymous said...

Emine, thanks for your answer. No problme, next time I go to St Paul, I'll send you some pictures.
Can't wait to go to bed tonjight and wake up tomorrow morning, discovering your new chapter!
If I hadn't to go to work, I would stay up all night to to read it as soon as you post it! lol!

S. from France

reebz said...

Emine I have spent this last week going back to your first book and have read most of it again. You have astounded me in your development of the characters. I have to remind myself that they truly fictional (yeh right). I cant help but wonder just what E L James would think about this view. Personally I think you a "spot" on! I have read a fanfiction about Taylor somewhere on the web and in it he tells Grey that they are getting married after Anna and Christian were chased home while she was driving his car. I can't wait to see where you place it. Other than that fanfiction yours is the only one I read. Other than the original books the others stress me out because they are too rushed. Thanks for taking the time to entertain us and provide us with an awesome way to escape our reality. Take care and love on your mom all that you can. My mom earned her angel wings eighteen years ago today. What I wouldn't give for one more hug!

Holly said...

anxiously waiting for the next chapter.. I hope it will be up soon!!! I keep refreshing my page, waiting for it!!!!

Anonymous said...

I can't wait foe the next chapter either! ! I love your work!greetings from Florida!

Anonymous said...

I can't wait foe the next chapter either! ! I love your work!greetings from Florida!

Amanda said...

I love your story!!! And I love how you plan to continue with the parts that we missed in the books. I also must say I love a person earlier who said Ana should have a scene with Olivia...that would be hilarious!

I have always wondered what Elena's reaction was when she got word that Ana was pregnant. Have you ever considered giving almost a follow up to people like her's reactions?

I can't wait for the next part!

Ediene O Maia said...

Oi Emine!!!
Eu não sei o que esta acontecendo com o seu Blogger, porque não esta atualizando a pagina.
eu nem consigo ver os comentários direitos. Por favor, você pode me explicar.
Obrigado mais uma vez.

Ediene O Maia said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Julie ernst said...

Me too!! I can't wait!!

Aracely said...

ETA, It's an acronym for "Estimated Time of Arrival." Generally used for texting, on the internet, Email etc.It's also military slang :)

Charm D said...

EmIne,
This chapter was AWESOME! This is your best work to date. I am so glad that I followed you and have had the opportunity to watch your amazing talent flourish.

Take care
Char

Kimberly Nielsen said...

Love your writing!

Anonymous said...

Hi Emine,

When is the next chapter expected. Keep checking every few minutes.

Love
S from India

cristine-b1 said...

Dear Emine,

I have recently discovered your blog and now I'm hooked! I've reread all your chapters at least twice (the whole month of June has been a Fifty Shades rediscovery, actually) and at times I have read your chapters alongside EL James' ~ so entertaining, I must say!

The context flow is so legit and I've never thought of this as a fanfic :)

I LOVE all of Book 4! Mostly because it is so CG-centered. I love him and his 50 shades of fuckedupness moreso highlighted by his personal hellish nightmare coming alive to torment him!

Keep writing, please! Your fans and readers are here, always waiting for your next obra :)

Xoxo from the Philippines,

cristine_b1

Anonymous said...

hi emine,
this chapter has truly been a roller coaster ride filled with emotions. you had me LOL when the nurse was reprimanding christian about using profanity & then i was sobbing like a little girl when christian was asking ana to come back to him & when he said "you see ana, there is no me without you". deep, deep, deep. thanks you

Judith nassaazi said...

I can't put down my phone since I stumbled onto your blog...wow...you are an amazing writer, great piece!!

Anonymous said...

He has the same birthday as me !!!!!!

Evie Hammond said...

Here we go with the stupids, again -- everyone calling an unconscious, and then a recovering patient, stupid! I don't see what else she could have done.

I've run through it again and again in my mind. When I first read the book, I thought she could have called. But seeing it the way you've shown it, Hyde had backing in high places, from a seriously psychotic and seriously wealthy backer. It's just possible their calls were being tracked, at least. Ana used intelligence about the cellphone idea, and she knew she would be tracked and followed. That constitutes letting Christian know, in my book. What, does he think that was an accident? Why do none of them give her credit for intelligence and courage, instead of berating her for stupidity. That must just cap it all.

Fave parts:
his eyes staring at the light pointedly which is a trick I have used in the past to prevent shedding tears. (I didn't know that.)

If this woman had smile muscles, they’ve lost their function with limited use some time ago. (LOL)

I never could believe that CG would tolerate Nurse Nora. I thought he would hire a private duty nurse, but that would be something a British writer wouldn't necessarily know about.