Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Book IV - Chapter XXII - Christian and Anastasia Fan Fiction


I can’t with any conscience argue for New York with anyone. It’s like Calcutta. But I love the city in an emotional, irrational way, like loving your mother or your father even though they’re a drunk or a thief. I’ve loved the city my whole life — to me, it’s like a great woman. 

Woody Allen

            “Ana!” I chide her. “We’re going to take off in ten minutes. You need to turn off your Blackberry.”
            “I know! I know! But, Hannah has to bring some important manuscripts that I forgot to pack. I don’t have them in the shared drive so I can’t access them from outside, not with all the overhauling IT guys have done. And we needed those for introducing some of our up and coming writers. So, she’ll have take a flight late tonight or early tomorrow morning.”
“Will she make it on time? Do you want me to come with you to the Symposium? My offer still stands,” I say to Anastasia. If the assistant isn’t there, I need someone in very close proximity to her. Anastasia rolls her eyes.
“No, Christian! She’ll make it tomorrow afternoon at the latest. Even if she doesn’t make it which is unlikely, I think I can handle myself. Besides, I should be able to show the others I can do well alone.” Then she lowers her voice.
“I told you, you’re a distraction to others, and I want them to pay attention to what I have to say instead of ogling my husband.” I pout in her remark knowing the effect.

“I think Melissa can play the role of my assistant for one day if Hannah can’t make it to the Symposium on time.”
“Okay. I can live with that, though that is not what I desire. Since I’ve compromised, I think you owe me big time, Mrs. Grey.”
“Big time?” she asks her eyes widening.
“Yes. Carte blanche kind of big time.”
“Carte blanche,” she says trying the word for size, suddenly breathless. I reach and take her Blackberry off her hand and turn it off without looking at it, and drop it into her purse.
“Yes, last time I was here, I went to a business meeting all by myself. I was distracted with your disobedience and I was accosted with the most unwelcome advances by both female and male vultures.” Her head snaps up.
“You never said anything about that!” she says, her voice accusatory.
“I was preoccupied with the thoughts of my wife. Nothing to report, but since I’m attending to a similar meeting, I am quite sure the business guests would be part of the same crowd. But this time…” I say pausing; I want my wife in my arm showing her presence with her spectacular body and with her sassy and in charge self, showing her possession of me, and I of her. 
“…this time, I want you with me and I don’t want anyone have any doubt about who I belong and who belongs…to…me.”
A loud female voice interrupts our conversation. The flight attendant is giving the spiel for the aircraft safety. This time I pay close attention to it, because I have the two of the most precious cargo with me: my wife and our baby in her womb. Yet, in that moment, Anastasia’ reaction to what I just said to her doesn't escape my notice. She first blinks then her lips part as if to say something. Oh shit! This could go either way. Is she mad? She turns her head to the flight attendant with her eye brows crossed. Once the mandatory safety instructions are over, I fix my gaze on Anastasia. She takes a deep breath getting ready to collect all her wits about her so she can deliver her most forbidding speech.

Then she opens her mouth to say whatever has been brewing in her mind within the last few minutes, but she’s interrupted by Stephen’s voice echoing through the speakers cautioning us to fasten our seat belts and that we are in line for the take-off. The word ‘take-off’ puts the fear of God in Anastasia. Her hands automatically hold onto her seat, her knuckles going white. I can see the anxiety rising in her. I immediately reach out and hold her hands, and run comforting circles on the back of her hands and her palms.  Our brunette flight attendant comes and quickly collects the empty glasses and plates from the seats. I hear collective clicks from Taylor, Sawyer, Melissa and Reynolds’ seats in the back. My company jet starts taxiing on the runway first slowly then comes to a full stop taking its position in line with the other airplanes for take-off. Then I hear the last click of a seat belt from the back of the jet. It’s probably the flight attendant. Stephen’s voice comes up again.
“It’s 11:06 a.m. local time. We are the third airplane in line for take-off. Please observe the seat belt sign until it is turned off. We are going to arrive in New York City’s John F. Kennedy Airport at 8:38 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. The total estimated flight time is 6 hours and 32 minutes. As always, it’s a pleasure to serve you. Please, sit back and enjoy your flight!”
Anastasia continues to breathe rapidly.
“Relax, baby. I’m here. Focus on me…” Anastasia blinks a few more times.
“Ana, look at me,” I say softly. The last thing I want is my wife going into early labor because of her fear of take-offs. When she looks at me, I give her my most dazzling smile to keep her focused on me instead of her fears. The best technique is the distraction technique for Anastasia.
“What were you upset a minute ago?” I ask.
“Oh!” she says first frowning. “That I didn’t bring any party clothes,” she says with a contemplative voice. “You have to take me to shopping, so, I can look my best when I kick the asses of those who wanted a piece of my husband!”
“Mrs. Grey, are you jealous?” I ask, my eyes darkening.
“A bit! You are mine just as much as I am yours, Christian. I can’t believe you didn’t tell me anything about it!” she says distracted.
“There was nothing to tell except that I deeply felt your absence. It was one of the worst days of my life and there were so many other emergencies to deal with then, I had not remembered it until today. But I still don’t want to talk about that day. It’s… unpleasant,” I murmur remembering Hyde's break-in to our apartment.
“Okay, Mr. Grey. I guess I won’t let you out of my sight when we go to your business meeting. Is it a meeting?” she asks with an afterthought.
“It’s hobnobbing with other big money and businesses from continental U.S., Canada, South America, Europe and South East Asia. Meet and greet, make connections, make business deals while socializing. Normally, it’s quite boring actually but since you will be coming, my night is looking so much better,” I say grinning as the jet speeds up on the runway with terminal velocity and Anastasia’s grip on me gets stronger. The second the wheels of the jet loses connection with the ground, and the nose of the plane is at a steep angle climbing up, Anastasia’s eyes widen.
“Breathe, baby, breathe. It’s just the take-off. We will soon be at cruising altitude,” I say looking for something to distract her again. “How did you like the crib we chose? Were you just acquiescing with me for my sake, or did you really like it?”
She thinks for a moment. Oh oh. That can’t be good.
“I like it,” she says nodding.
“That’s it?” I probe.
“Yes. I don’t think he would appreciate a girly bedroom, and I’m just as anxious as you are for his well-being. Since we are first time parents and neither one of us know anything about parenting, I’d like to think that any little thing that can give us a hand or a leg up is welcome. We’re going to get a nanny; we've discussed that, but I want us to be hands on parents. I think it was actually extremely sweet that you had researched it beforehand to know what exactly you wanted, Mr. Grey,” she says.
“What? How?” I ask surprised.
“Oh, I think I’m getting the measure of my own Grey man and I must say, I love this anxious, protective parent side of you. It makes me proud to know that you are going to be a magnificent father.” She’s smiling and completely sure of herself.
“God! I love you Mrs. Grey! You are the center of my entire universe. Everything rights with you and somehow finds its bearing,” I say kissing her hand. At that moment the overhead lights dings and Stephen turned his seat-belt sign off.

“This is your Captain speaking. You are now free to roam in the cabin.”
“See, piece of cake,” I say grinning at her.

An hour into the flight, Anastasia gets sleepy. Her two naps are now firmly in her schedule. The growth of the baby is taking a lot out of her. So, I walk her into the cabin with the bed.
“Will you lie down and hold me Christian?” she asks yawning. I have to go over business documents, but my wife is more important than those.
“If I lie down with you, I don’t know if can keep my hands off you long enough to let you sleep,” I say truthfully.
“I’d rather have you with me than not even if you can’t keep your hands off me, Mr. Grey,” she says and yawns big again.
“Agh! Fuck it!” I say and take my shoes and socks off. I slide my jacket off and drape it over a chair. Finally pull the duvet cover up and tuck my wife in it and lie down next to her. I turn the lights to dim and pull her into my arms. The last time I was in the plane was when I was flying back from New York, livid, completely beside myself, just intent on reaching to Anastasia in Seattle. Here she is, in my arms. I hold her tighter.

“I love you too, Christian. Night,” she says with a smile in her sleepy voice. I kiss her hair.
“Sleep tight baby,” I whisper. “I love you more.”

*****      *****

Our driver meets us at baggage claim with a sign in his hand that says “MR. TAYLOR”. Taylor raises his index and middle finger like the Boy Scout salute and gets the driver’s attention. He’s in his full driver regalia down to the chauffeur’s hat.
“Welcome to New York, Mr. Taylor, sirs, ma’am, ma’am,” he says individually and collectively greeting us. “I’m parked in the parking garage.”
“How’s the weather outside?” I ask.
“It’s about 26 degrees at this hour. I wasn’t sure if your flight would be on time given the weather conditions of our fair city. We have only had moderate snow, expecting heavy snow in about a week, but I think it’ll come down by the end of this week. It’s very cold outside. You might all wanna put your coats on.” he says. When we exit the warmth of the airport into the covered but freeze-your-ass kind of cold airport parking, the onslaught of cold blasts rushes in from all sides; the bitter wind whistles. I wrap Anastasia tighter in her coat. She wraps her scarf to cover her reddened face. Our breaths are smoky wisps. The driver quickly locates the limo and unlocks the doors.
“Brrrr! It’s so cold! I’ve never been in such cold weather!” Anastasia says.
“That’s New York in January, ma’am,” says the limo driver whose name tag reads “Barney J. Harrigan” as he’s opening the door. He has salt and pepper hair appearing to be in his late 50s. 
“Pardon the expression ma’am, but when we get into the city you’ll see that people are like rats scurrying in such an overflow and in a hurry in this cold weather. Because everyone wants to get out of it and find some warm corner to heat up.” I help my wife in while the driver helps Reynolds, Sawyer, Taylor, and Melissa to load the luggage. Everyone files into the vehicle and the driver moves. The limo is cold, but Barney turns it on and blasts the heat.

Manhattan - Rod Stewart

The city looks gritty, dark and hard at around 9 p.m. at night. As the limo speeds through, Taylor is recapping the logistics with the group of security. Ana is curiously looking outside trying to observe the onslaught of the city that is New York. The traffic is rushing scornfully and Anastasia looks mesmerized with the smoke billowing from the manhole covers. When we stop at a red light, the ground underneath us rumbles making Ana startled. 
“It’s the subway,” I remind her. She nods as her mouth is open.
“Lights are everywhere and they’re so bright! Wow! I don’t think the inhabitants of this city have seen the stars or the moon in ages with this much light pollution!” she says trying to twist her head to get a glimpse of the sky. Her eyes are alight with a drunken excitement everyone gets upon seeing the city of New York for the first time. The look says it all: a lot of awe and some intimidation, but mostly expectation. As we drive through the city towards our apartment, Anastasia notices people outside. Some are just looking straight and continuing on their road rapidly, oblivious or uninterested with the going ons around them. There’s that few who occasionally look up.
“Hmm…” Anastasia remarks. “If my observations from Seattle are correct, those who rush by oblivious of the beauty around are local New Yorkers. And those who are looking up every so often like the city is going to grow another skyscraper from the ground are visitors of the city.
“You’re right. No Native New Yorker would stop in the middle of the road to stare up.”
“I never asked you, Christian. Where’s your apartment?” Anastasia asks her eyes alight.
Our apartment,” I emphasize, “is in Manhattan’s Upper East Side.”
Anastasia looks tired, but she tries to fight it off with her excitement of being in the city of New York. The limo driver navigates his way through the one way streets, and turns into the street where our apartment building is located. When the limo pulls in front of the apartment building he carefully slows down and comes to a complete stop. A doorman rushes to open my door. Taylor lets himself out from the other side and our security detail piles out quickly taking different positions scanning the area then proceed to get the luggage. I help Anastasia out of the car.
“Careful baby, there might be ice on the ground and you have heels,” I says mentally kicking myself. I should have made her wear sneakers or something. This sort of weather is not for podiatric excellence. When the doorman sees me, he beams.
“Mr. Grey! How nice to see you back in New York, sir. Welcome, ma’am.”
“Thank you, Donald. This is my wife, Mrs. Grey.”
“Pleasure to meet you, ma’am. Let’s get you into the warmth of the building. The weather has been unpleasantly cold even though we haven’t had much snow,” he says as he opens the door into the building. I palm some money into Donald’s hand as the gush of warm air greets us, welcomingly. I press the button to call the elevator. Taylor sidles up to me, and discreetly clears his throat. I raise my eyebrows to look at him.

“I’ll take the service elevator with Reynolds to quickly do a sweep, sir. I’d appreciate it if you could delay reaching the penthouse for about three minutes. Let me secure your living quarters,” he says. I give him a sideways nod imperceptibly and he looks at Reynolds and they leave in quick steps.
“What was that about?” Anastasia asks.
“Nothing to worry about, baby,” I say. “Are you tired? Or well enough to go out to dinner?”
“I’d love to go out, but I feel bushed.”
“Okay, we’ll order in, then. There are some wonderful restaurants with excellent cuisine here in the neighborhood.” The elevator doors ding open. Three young people cheerfully chatting exit the elevator and head for the door after tightening their coats and scarves.
“We’ll wait for the next one,” I say as newly arrived residents get into the elevator holding the door open for us. The businessman shrugs and lets the doors close.
“Squeamish to be with others in the same elevator space, Mr. Grey?” Anastasia asks. I roll my eyes in response and press the call button for the elevators again. Once the elevator arrives into the ground floor and the doors ding open, I hold Anastasia on the small of her back and lead her into the elevator space. Both Sawyer and Melissa enter into the elevator after giving a cursory glance into the foyer of the apartment to make sure no one threatening is there. I press the button for the penthouse and enter my key. As the elevator takes us up, Anastasia laces her fingers with mine. When we finally reach the penthouse, the elevator doors slide open. Sawyer holds the door open, and Melissa quickly steps out and scans the foyer. Anastasia rolls her eyes, and as she tries to step out of the elevator, I stop her and scoop her off the floor in my arms. She’s surprised and holds onto me with her arms wrapped on my neck.
“I have to get my wife through every threshold.”

“Mr. Grey, you’re a true romantic,” she whispers.
“Only for you baby,” I murmur and land a chaste kiss on her lips. Taylor comes to the foyer and nods imperceptibly.
“Would you like something to drink?” I ask. The refrigerators should have been stocked.
“I’m actually famished. I have a craving for lamb like you got from the deli I found on Pike district.”
“Taylor?” I call.
“Agora Restaurant has a similar cuisine,” he says.
“Then order lamb skewers, yogurt sauce, hummus, stuffed grape leaves, rice, salad and bread for two.”
“Yes, sir,” Taylor responds and walks away.
“Come, let me show you our room,” I say pulling her behind me. The bedroom is in the shades of white and accented with cream color. Seeing two walls with steel framed floor to ceiling glass she opens her eyes wide and gaze into the Manhattan skyline. There’s a wraparound balcony outside. She surveys around and her eyes drift to the ornate ceiling.
“Very fancy,” she says softly.
“The apartment was built in 1933. Prewar architecture. It was remodeled consistent with its former glory but with modern amenities.”
“The walls are quite high…” she murmurs absently. What’s wrong with her?
“Yes, bedroom walls have twelve foot ceilings,” I say taking a step toward her. I stand right before her and turn her to me.

Breathe - Anna Nalick

“What’s wrong, Ana?” She shakes her head.
“Ana! Please! You were fine during the flight, and even during the ride here. And as soon as we got to the apartment, you don’t look well. What. Is. Wrong? Before I assume the worst? Please, I’m going crazy!”
“Oh, Christian. I’m feeling so insignificant! All this,” she says gesturing around, “all this opulence. And you, this magnificent man! Hearing about others hitting on you, women who actually belong to this sort of life… I’m feeling a bit overwhelmed.”
“There are many reasons why I love you Ana, but one of them is this… that you are completely unaware of your own worth or that you don’t care what I have and you don’t love me for my wealth which is all the more reason for me to want to spread the world beneath your feet. All these other people, women,” and occasional men, but no need to mention that to her, “who salivate behind me, do so because of this package. It’s about what I have and how I look. What do they know about me? Nothing! They like the persona, they like a good fuck, they like to be seen with a billionaire and show up in the gossip magazines. But, you…” I say softly lifting her chin up to meet my gaze, a smile tugs at the corners of my lips, “you are unlike anyone. You’re my reason for being, for existing. You are the love of my life! The minute you entered into my life, you dimmed every star, because you’re my sun! I’m blinded to all that is around me. You first spun my life out of its orderly orbit then pulled it back into yours. I never wish to be without you again. You’re my life now.
What you see here… all this is yours. I’d give you this and more, Ana.”

She gives out a heavy sigh. “All I want is you.”

All I want is you - U2

“I know, but I come with this package,” I say shrugging.
“Thank you for your love Christian. I love you so much, sometimes, I feel like I’m going to wake up from this dream and you’ll be gone.”
“That’s not gonna happen baby,” I grin. “I can prove that to you right now if you so desire.”
“Well, you can demonstrate your love in the shower, Mr. Grey,” she says biting her lower lip. 
"With pleasure, Mrs. Grey!" I say as I slowly peel off her coat and her scarf. 
"In fact," I say and lift her off the floor cradling her in my arms, I walk into the master bathroom. I turn the water on hot and walk under the cascading waters with my wife in my arms.

*****      *****


“Ohmigod! Ohmigod! Ohmigod! I’m gonna miss my plane!” Hannah cries out to no one in particular as she runs as fast as her Manola Blahnik clad feet could carry her through the newly waxed airport terminal. She is making a mental inventory as she is rushing through. Her Hermes purse contains her personal items, her smart phone, tickets, wallet, ID, as well as the manuscripts Ana forgot. She could of course just look at them on the laptop but she felt the needed to print them because she needed to mark and highlight them for Ana, and they needed those for this symposium. It’s important for her to get Ana’s approval. She, after all is married to the Boss’s boss’s boss’ boss. An opportunity like that comes only once in a lifetime. 
Hannah reminds herself to go over the manuscripts twice on the plane and summarize them for Ana. Oh wait! Did she remember to pack the thumb drive? It would be a monumental fuck-up if she forgot that! That was the reason she is now taking a commercial flight as opposed to flying in the Grey Enterprises Inc. jet along with Ana's panty-dropping type of good looking husband. She has her personal items in her a carry-on, her laptop bag complete with the charger, mouse and the thumb drive and of course her coat is hanging from her arm among many items she is carrying with her. But she is having second thoughts on having worn a pencil skirt and silk blouse. Very business-like, but not airport worthy when you are flying cross country. Just as she nears the airline counter she collides with another passenger who is just as much in a hurry as she is.
“Shit! Fuck! Sorry! I’m soooo going to miss my plane!” she complains and goes down the floor on her knees and to collect her scattered items.
“I’ll help,” says the stranger’s voice. That's the least you can do for colliding with me, she thinks but what comes out of her mouth is, “I got it!”
“No, you haven’t," says a husky voice. "If you’re going to be on that plane to in such a short time, I'll have to help you. Let me make amends for my carelessness. Have you even checked in?"
“I checked in online!” she retorts but getting a good look at him, her eyes widens and she softens.
“Suit yourself. But they aren’t gonna let you take all these items on the plane,” he says collecting a lip gloss carelessly rolled on the floor and tosses it into her Hermes bag. He then quickly collects a few other items still spread around the floor.
“Ohmigod! Ohmigod! I think my phone broke!” Hannah laments, now completely anxious.
“It’s okay. I think just the case came undone.”
“Oh no! The battery is gone!”
“It’s right there,” he says pointing a few steps to her right, and  she reaches to get it, just a tad bit relieved. It would be the biggest, most horrible kind of fuck-up if she damaged her phone! He quickly places the little chip under the SIM card while she's retrieving the battery. She extends her hand for the phone and he hands her the smart phone, the backing as well as the cracked the plastic case. Her hands shake.
“Please, let me,” he says and gently takes it away from her. He swiftly places the battery on the back of the phone, secures the cover then clicks the case in place. He finally presses the power button. The screen flickers to life. He imperceptibly exhales a sigh of relief, and hands it to her.
“Good as new!”
“Thank you! I better hurry!” She says halfheartedly, slings the Hermes purse, the laptop bag, and drags her carry-on.
“Your coat?” he says smiling under his Seattle Seahawks cap, extending her stylish coat to her.
“Oh, yes! Thanks! On the second thought, I better check this in!” she says and quickly head for the bagged check-in.

*****      *****

The flight attendant is about the close the door.
"Wait! Wait! I need to get on that flight!" she calls out desperately.
“You’re the last person to make it to the flight, ma'am. We were getting ready to close the doors.”
Hannah hands her boarding pass and the flight attendant wishes her a safe flight and sends her on her way. With the top speed Hannah rushes down the gate and makes it into the airplane. She’s flying business class today. She locates her seat right away, and places her coat on her seat. Then she places her laptop bag into the overhead bin. She will get it down once she’s marked everything on the paper. Then she exhales a well-deserved a sigh of relief.
After removing her coat from the seat, she sits and buckles her seat-belt draping her coat over her legs. Then she gives a cursory glance to her surroundings and her fellow passengers. Her eyes widen when she sees the young man who helped her earlier in the seat across the aisle.
“You!” she says.
“Well, I’ve been called worse names than that, but I prefer to go by John.”
“I’m sorry, I apologize,” she shakes her head. “I’m Hannah. You’re a lifesaver. I didn’t get a chance to properly thank you other than just muttering. I’m usually not that uncoordinated or rude.”
“This must be an off day then.”
“You can say that. I had too much to do and a short time to do it.”
“Glad you made it on time. It’d be unfortunate to be deprived of your beautiful company during this flight." Hannah blushes with the unexpected compliment. She looks at John and realizes that he’s a ruggedly handsome man, with green eyes, slightly overlong hair. There’s something hard in him though, just like the muscles he’s hiding under his t-shirt.
After the usual spiel of how to buckle and unbuckle your belt or how to save yourself or your fellow passenger in the unlikely event of a plane crash…blah blah blah… Hannah isn't listening. She wants to look at the man sitting in the next aisle without appearing like a man-hungry dork, of course.
The plane taxies and takes off. Hannah finally takes out one of the manuscripts and starts highlighting and annotating the parts of it. Just as soon as the flight attendant gives a green light, the passenger who calls himself John opens his iPad. He then searches for the icon that looks like a chess piece and locates the exact device he is seeking. He double clicks it, and activates it. CIA couldn’t pay him enough for the skills he possesses. He is going to make a shitload of money after this job is complete. The horse is delivered. Now onto the next step. He closes the icon, and opens up his Kindle app. He can afford to relax a little now with a very imperceptible smile tugging at the corner of his lip. He hasn’t been to New York since he took this contract. He missed the frenetic energy of it. What did George Carlin say about New York?

“Of course, in Los Angeles, everything is based on driving, even the killings. In New York, most people don’t have cars, so if you want to kill a person, you have to take the subway to their house. And sometimes on the way, the train is delayed and you get impatient, so you have to kill someone on the subway. That’s why there are so many subway murders; no one has a car.”

He thought those were the idiotic murderers. There is an art even to killing. Even though he found it distasteful learning about his prey, his current client seemed to get off and draw some sadistic pleasure in getting to know his victims, he didn't care. Whatever floated his psycho boat as long as he paid him on time and regularly. That sick bastard got a lot of satisfaction in studying and stalking his prey…through him of course. The client liked to learn their habits, their natural habitat, almost to fuel his despise of them to have more reason to make his crime personal and he wanted to watch life snuffed out of them. John, however didn’t like that sort of personal shit. He didn’t like to know who his victims are, what they like, where they dine, or even their names. Just an image. Then it was only business, impersonal, just a notch on your very accomplished belt. But, he’s seen sicker shit, has done his own kind of sadistic crap in his mercenary days. He didn’t care one way or the other. It wasn’t personal for him after all. Just business. Juuuust business, and leans back in his seat reading his favorite author: Stephen King. When the flight attendant comes by to take his drink order, he replies:
“Grey Goose. Make it a double,” and without looking back to her he goes back to his story, “Survivor Type”. He has a few hours to kill after all.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Book IV - Chapter XXI - Christian and Anastasia Fan Fiction

I have spread my dreams under your feet; tread softly because you tread on my dreams.
W.B. Yeats

            “Christian! You framed this picture?” Anastasia says, her voice is accusatory.
            “I thought you’d be happy that I have a picture of blip next to his parents wedding picture. You shouldn’t be opposed to having our son’s,” I say emphasizing, “first pictures to be displayed in my own home office.”
            “Not that one!” she says rolling her eyes.
            “It has the profile as well… See,” I show her, “they’re side by side.”
            “Bottom and the top view?” she asks raising her eyebrows.
            I shrug nonchalantly.
            “You’re not embarrassed of this. Are you?” she asks narrowing her eyes. It's not a question, it's just a statement of fact.
            “Baby, don’t tell me you’re embarrassed of our son. Why should I be ashamed of my manhood or that our child is also a male like me? Besides it’s in my home office…”
            “Oooo-kay… let’s hear it…” she sighs knowing there’s more. “What did your dad and Elliott say?” she asks putting her hand on her back to support herself. I open my arms, and she walks into them, sitting on my lap.
            “Well, they thought it was amusing. You know Elliot. He will always have to some innuendo to inject into the conversation, but even he was speechless for a moment. Then of course, he recovered quickly and said he can see the Grey family resemblance in junior.”

            “But, you’re both adopted,” she replies.
            “Yes, but it is possible for us to be similar in that way. You haven’t heard Katherine complain about him after all. We, Grey men tend to be virile,” I say with a smirk. I leave out the part where Ethan Kavanagh looked like he swallowed a nasty bug.
            “That you are Mr. Grey,” she agrees nuzzling into me. “By the way,” she adds, “Ray liked his present you got him.”
            “We got him,” I correct her.  
            “Christian, I know nothing about fishing. You’ve done a good job choosing the fishing gear for him.”
            “I couldn’t get a good read on your taciturn step father on New Year’s eve. I thought he didn’t seem overly enthused about it.”
            “Did he give you this speechless face, and do this?” she says and gives me a slightly wide eyed look nodding her head.
            “Well, that’s as close as Ray gets cartwheeling for joy. He was happy,” she says confidently, grinning wide.
            “If you say so Mrs. Grey,” I say and hold her tighter.
            “So, are you excited about going to New York tomorrow?” I ask her.  She furrows her brows for a moment. Is she not happy going to New York with me?
            “You’re not going to give me an excuse how you should be doing it on your own, are you?”
            “No…” she says mulling an idea in her head. “No, that’s not it.”
            “Spit it out Mrs. Grey. You worry me when you get this contemplative churning an idea in your head before you dish it out to me.”
            She rolls her eyes. “My hands still twitch, you know,” I say giving her devilish grin.
            “I know they do Mr. Grey. I believe you amply demonstrated that last night at Escala.”
            “Are you complaining?” I ask cocking my head.
            “No, no… More like salivating with the thought.”
            “God!” I hiss the word through my teeth. I seat her on my lap like she’s riding me.

            “Go ahead and say you mind before I decide to have you right here like this!” I threaten. She takes a deep breath.
            “I want to attend the ‘Writer’s Symposium’ just with my assistant. I don’t want to draw attention to myself with security around. You know, it’s New York City and I want to be able to just blend in. Nothing draws attention like professional bodyguards following you.”
            “Ana!” I start protesting.
            “Listen, Christian. I thought about it. It’s not that big of a deal. We’ll be out of town. No one would know me out there. I’d be just one of the crowd.”
            “Do you really think that you will be just one of the crowd? And you don’t want me coming along either?” I say too softly.
            “Well, I’d like to go with my assistant. And you can get business done while I’m at the Symposium. Besides it’s just a one day event. You’ll have me Monday. Then I go to the symposium on Tuesday, and you’ll have all week after that. That really is not a bad deal.” I groan inwardly. I have only a few months left to spend with my wife alone. Then it would be the three of us, forever. Why can’t she understand that I need, I crave this time with her? Just for a few more months?
            “Have you been to New York City?” I ask knowing I will not win an argument if I tell her straight away it’s for her safety.

New York New York - Frank Sinatra

            “No, but that doesn’t mean I won’t be able to find my way. I’m 22 years old, Christian. Hannah’s been there twice!” she says as if this will convince me to give her the leeway to concede.
            “I see… A beautiful, pregnant woman like you all alone in a city like New York where there are homicides, rapes, robberies and aggravated assault on daily basis, you want me to let my pregnant wife loose in a city she’s never been? I don’t think so Mrs. Grey. You go with me and the security. That’s the end of the discussion.”
            “But, Christian!” she protests. “You’re, you know, you! This Greek god-like man! I don’t want half the man and all the women ogling my husband!” she says crossing her eyebrows.
            “Are you jealous Mrs. Grey?” I ask with a smile tugging at the corners of my lips.
            “Maybe a bit,” she responds.
            “Baby, I only have eyes for you. Okay… The best I can do is that I take you to the event, but your security remains. Meanwhile I can just go to my own meeting. That way, we’re compromising,” I say giving her favorite word back to her. “You taught me that. You told me what you want, and I’m telling you what I can live with within the framework of your request. But, there’s no way in hell, I’m leaving you alone in a city like New York where there are other vultures.”
            “Christian, honestly! Who would want a pregnant woman when there are young, beautiful and available ones?”
            “Because, men find it challenging taking possession of a woman who belongs to someone else. You are mine!” I growl. “I don’t want anyone to make the effort.” I make a mental note to remind Melissa and Sawyer the three foot radius to keep the male colleagues away from her.
            “Okay, fine!” she replies, breathing through her nose. She's really mad. “It wouldn’t be that bad if you agreed some of my wants.”
            “I agree with a lot of your wants. But what you demand right now is beyond what I am capable of agreeing. That’s why we call it a compromise. And besides, you would want swift transportation in New York because if you are utilizing public transportation I find it unsafe and they’re complicated. You’ll get lost. Not to mention it's winter and cold right now. Our apartment isn’t that close to the Symposium.”
            “Oh, for heaven’s sake! Okay, fine!” she says, acquiescing. “Since New York trip is your gift, I agree to the security. I'll just be with my assistant aaand my security at the symposium. You can go to your own meeting. But, you haven’t said anything about my gift so far. Haven’t you given any thought to it yet?” she asks. I know what she means. She wants to know about the baby's name. I have a way to get what I want.
            “I have a list compiled already. Would you like to give me your opinion?” I ask. She rolls her eyes again then extends her hand.
            “Just give it to me Christian!”
            “Oh, I’d love to give it to you Mrs. Grey,” I smirk. I finally hand her the list. Her eyes widen with the first name on the list.

      1.      Thaddeus
      2.      Agustin
      3.      Quinten
      4.      Graysen
      5.      Howard
      6.      Theodore
      7.      Legend
      8.      Roderick
      9.      Reuben
      10.  Maxton
      11. Barnabas
      12. Porter
      13. Bastian
      14. Jagger
      15. Locklyn

Oh shit! What if my plan backfires? She’s not saying anything yet. After getting over her shock, “Thaddeus?” she finally asks. “What would the nick name be for that? Thad? Why don’t we just pin a ‘kick me’ sign on blip’s back? That’s what he’s going to get at school with names like that,” she says shaking her head.
            “There isn’t a single name you like in the list?” I ask nervously.
            “I kind of like Graysen. But it would sound awkward with Graysen Grey. Quinten sounds too morbid. I’m always going to think that director who makes scary movies. Howard is out. Legend? Oh, no! Roderick, hell no! Rueben sounds like a sandwich. Maxton? Pffff!" she lets out a big breath. "Really, Christian? Barnabas is out. I don’t think that name existed since the time of the Bible! Porter sounds like we want our kid to be a porter… no! Bastian… agh!” She groans loudly. “Christian, Bastian? How much thought did you put into these names? Who is Bastian anyway?” she asks exasperated. “You must have been inspired by someone to come up with these names, but I don’t remember hearing any of them from you. Jagger sounds like Mick Jagger and though I like his music, I don’t want that name to be associated with our baby. Locklyn is unique. I might. Hmmm…” she says displeased.
            “Mrs. Grey, you’re wounding my ego!” I say trying to hide my hurt. “Can’t you be any less critical or show some open mind to my choices. After all, you said to make a list of my favorite names and that you would choose the one you liked.”
            She hasn’t said anything about my favorite name. But then she may have liked two of the names in the list which I didn’t count on. I don’t want any of those names except one.
            “Theodore Grey… Theodore Grey… Teddy, Ted…” She’s mulling the name in her head, voicing it out loud. Hope rises in me. “Where did you get that name? It sounds familiar,” she says.
            “Grandpa Trevelyan’s first name,” I murmur shrugging. Her lips lift up in one corner. She now knows that it’s the name I prefer.
            “It’s a sophisticated name, yet it is also modern. Teddy, Ted… Yes, I like it. It’s between Grayson and Theodore but Grayson wouldn’t go so well with Grey. Maybe it might..." She's toying with me. I hold my breath. She finally grins. "Okay, okay, Theodore, then,” she says.
            “God, Mrs. Grey! I love you so much!” I hiss as I hold her face to kiss her. It’s an urgent kiss, passionate, full of love and possessive.
            “Mine!” I growl into her lip when I kiss her. Her fingers lace into my hair, tugging and pulling me into her. I groan.

            “Oh, Mrs. Grey, I want to have you now, but we need to decide on the middle name,” I murmur.
            “Now?” she asks in a whiny voice. I don’t like to leave any business unfinished, and I would like to resolve the name issue right now. Besides, she’s more agreeable if her mind is on sex.
            “Okay, but we’re getting back to where we left off once we decide,” she protests.
            “I was thinking, since the first name was from my family, would you like the middle name from yours? Your birth father or maybe Ray’s name?”
            “Oh,” she says as a soft whimper escapes her lips. “Christian, that’s very thoughtful. But, I never met my birth father. My mother always says he was wonderful, but to me, he’s this mythical man. I don't want her to cry every time she hear's the baby's middle name. Ray raised me. He’s my dad; he is the one I counted on. And I noticed that you didn’t suggest Carrick’s name,” she makes a note.
            “I love my dad, but this is our baby. I’ve used my grandfather’s name for our son’s first name. I think it’s only fair that you get to choose a name for his middle name,” I tell her. 
            “Theodore Raymond Grey. Yeah, it has a certain noble ring to it. I love it!” she says clapping her hand. “I thought we’d end up giving him two first names and two middle names considering all the people we like,” she smiles.
“We don’t want blip to take five years to learn his names. Theodore Raymond Grey it is then.”
“I’m very pleased with our choices Christian! You’ve done marvelous as always, Mr. Grey. And don’t think that I didn’t know what you were doing," she mutters with a glint in her eyes. "I got your measure already Grey.” she smirks at me.
“Are you smirking at your husband, Mrs. Grey? That will never do.”
“Oh, I don’t know, Mr. Grey. After how agreeable I’ve been today, I think you can afford me a little leeway. I think as a reward for being a very understanding wife today, maybe you and I can go look for a crib for Teddy?” she asks sweetly as she places small kisses on my cheeks and lips. 
            “Well, we had his room painted to powder blue and the decorator was supposed to help us to pick up the furnishing pieces,” I remind her.
            “Yes, I know but I want us to go and browse in the stores. Look for little clothes, and things that we would need for him. But I want to shop for a crib for our baby. I think we should choose that piece together without being suggest from a list of items our decorator’s catalogue.”
            “Whatever you want, baby. Now, about that love making session I promised…” I say as I ride the bottom of her short night gown up and slowly, savoring the vision of my wife, I take it off her. I come face to face with the half-moon arches of her heavenly breasts. The curve of her pregnant belly is touching me. I caress her belly carrying our child. Momentarily I lift her up and get up off my seat. I carry her to the armchair on the other side of my desk.

            “Christian, I want to make love to you!” she protests.
            “No baby. You need to be worshiped and I intend to do just that!” I say my gaze darkening. I want to enjoy her with complete abandon. I stand Anastasia in front of the armchair.
“Let’s divest your panties off,” I say and kneel before my wife and slowly, reverentially slide off the panties and let her walk out of them. Anastasia’s hair falls in cascades over her breasts and her beautiful back. Right now, she looks very much like the statue of Aphrodite, a pregnant version of her. I raise my gaze up to her from her waist height as I’m sitting on my knees. It creates a sea of madness inside me, churning up a tsunami of emotions. I want to kiss every inch of her body.
“Sit!” I order, and she obeys. Slowly deposits herself into the seat.
“I want you to hold the high back of the chair,” I command. She holds the sides of the back.

“No, the top of it,” I order. She slowly, sensually moves her hands above her head, and she grasps the top of the high back of the armchair. Her arms above her thrusts her heavy breasts forward and her nipples bead in need, begging for attention.
“Legs…apart,” I murmur my next order. Anastasia looks at me her lips slightly part.
“Make me!” she says in a husky voice laced with wanton desire and crosses her legs or attempts to cross them with her pregnant belly impeding her attempt. She settles for crossing her ankles just as tempting. I arch my eyebrows.
“Mrs. Grey, are you goading me?”
“I prefer the word ‘seduce’, Mr. Grey,” she responds batting her eyelashes.
“I’m a given for seduction, Ana. Now that you raised the stakes by challenging me…” I say and kneel before her and grasp her ankle and lift it up it my lips. She writhes in her seat.
“Don’t move or I’ll tie you up, baby!” I warn her. “Let me just worship you,” I murmur. With that her breathing increases, her chest rises and falls rapidly, with it her breasts.
I hold her foot and graze her instep with my teeth.
“Aaahhh!” she groans curling her toes. But I don’t stop. Tip of my tongue runs on her arch to her toe. I fellate her toe with my tongue then confine it within the warm wetness of my mouth and suck it deep and hard, both promising and threatening her about what is to come to every inch of her body.  She knows and nearly convulses with that single point of erotic connection. I then run my thumb on the outer edge of her foot, finally grazing her instep with my nail. That single act makes her open her leg wide open for me. Her ankles and behind her knees are particularly erogenous. When I suck the cartilage on her ankle she’s in a sea of madness.

Tonight - Enrique Iglesias

“Oh, please, Christian!”
“Patience baby, let me savor you,” I murmur as I trail kisses behind her leg making my way up to her knees. When I come to her knees, I slightly lift her leg up, and suck behind her knee. Her leg immediately stiffens and she shouts in pleasure.
“Oh, fuck! Christian!”
I continue to nip, suck and lick my way up to her inner thighs. When I reach nearly the apex of her thighs, I grab her other leg and repeat my ministrations. When my lips reach to her sex, Anastasia drapes one of her legs onto my shoulder. I push the other leg and place it on the arm of the chair. Her sex is amazingly glistening with the evidence of her arousal. But purposefully, I don’t dip my tongue into her. I run my fingers through her slit and coat the blooms of her sex with her wetness. She thrusts her hips into my fingers. My hands immediately squeeze her buttocks to warn her against moving.
“Stop! I don’t want this to be over quickly. Savor it. Hold it in. Prolong the pleasure. Let it build up, raise the level of intensity, then only when I tell you so, you detonate your pleasure, baby.” She’s panting, her eyes wide, her irises dilated fully. She can only nod her acquiescence. I tease her clitoris with the tip of my tongue and simultaneously I plunge my middle finger into her sex. Curving my finger at the knuckle, I locate the front wall of her vagina and deliberately keep her on the precipice, but not triggering her orgasm, just letting her build up. Then I cover her clit with my mouth and suck it hard and again leave her without reaching her climax. It’s the amount of surge, the erotic charge that accumulates that yields to the biggest orgasm fueled by many different erotic sensations. My lips move to her pubic bone to her protruding belly and to her belly button where I linger and pay close attention to pleasure. With my free hand I caress her hip bones after I drape her leg on my shoulder onto the arm of the chair. My lips and kisses make my way up to her sternum and in the valley between her breasts. They ache for attention but I avoid them. I have other plans for them.
Anastasia automatically gives me access to her neck by arching it. My lips and tongue travel their way up to chin and her lips seek mine greedily merging. She moves one of her hands to my hair, but I grasp it and put it back on top of the chair. My lips move against hers first, nipping and sucking. My erection is straining against my pajamas, but I too must hold for the right moment. I want to kiss her roughly, possessively, worshiping, expressing what I feel for her in the most ardent manner. My body demands to take over. Yet I hold my desire back. My tongue meets hers. She’s the one who plunged into my mouth with her velvety soft licks. Showing me what she is demanding from me. Her tongue makes the plunging motions but I won’t let her top from the bottom. My tongue reciprocates in our sensual tango. I dip into her mouth, uninvited, yet very welcome. My plunges are deeper, extremely sexual, making her wetter. Her skin grows hotter. Anastasia moans deep, thrusting her breasts further. I extract my finger from her sex and my hands cup her sensitized breasts. I roll her nipples between my forefinger and thumb right at the line of pleasure and pain. She moans loudly.

I pull back and focus my attention on her breasts, thumbs kneading and stroking across, watching her watch me with hot, lascivious eyes, breathing laboriously. Her look back at me is also challenging to make this rougher and harder. The desire I feel for her is so intense, I couldn’t walk move even if the world was falling apart. She owns me. Right now, I want her to scream my name with pleasure. I want her to be so consumed with me even if it’s a fraction of the way I’m consumed with her, so that she think nothing else, but just the two of us.
“Watch me,” I say and quickly divest my t-shirt and pajama pants. Then clutching to her breast with my lips, I worship her. My fingers imitate my tongue strokes on the other breast. One last deep pull as I roll her nipple between my teeth, and she screams my name with her drowning pleasure.
“I’m damned and saved by you, Anastasia. You have no idea what you do to me,” I murmur. I lift her up, switching seats with her; I let her sit on my cock with her back to my chest. That way it’s easy on her belly.
“Wrap your arms around my neck,” I hiss my command through my gritted teeth. With one swift thrust, I’m inside her soaking sex.
“I want it rough and deep!” she groans as her sex squeezes my cock light a tight fist. Jesus Christ! This pregnancy made my already hungry wife ravenous for sex! I grasp her hips and control my strokes. If it’s up to Anastasia this would already be over. I want her to learn to prolong the pleasure and let its intensity grow exponentially. I grind into her and she trembles in my arms. She tilts her head back and her arms reach back and lace behind my head, giving complete and free access to her neck and her breasts. I lift her up and let her fall back onto the heavy rope between my legs. As she falls back, I spear into her, repeatedly. I capture her earlobe between my teeth and tug it and then lick the shell of her ear, then trail kisses over her neck and her shoulder. My hands are both pleasuring her breasts, and exerting just enough pain like she’s being tugged by clothes pins.
“Christian, I’m close!” she pants.
“No! You’re! Not!” I counter, thrusting into her all the while. “Not. Until. I. Tell. You!”
“Please!” she begs.
“Hold! It!” I keep on pushing her to her limits again, let her build up.
“When do you come?”
“When you tell me to… Aaaaah! Come!” she says trying her hardest to hold back the pleasure.
“Yessss! Come for me baby!” shout, and that’s when she allows her pleasure to detonate, shuddering and writhing in my arms. I follow her three seconds later shouting her name, completely replete. Will I ever get enough of her? Just when I think I might reach the precipice of getting my fill for the hour, I’m craving her more. Deeper harder, seeking a soul deep connection. She’s my other half. The part whose absence would make me simply go insane, the part that keeps me somewhat tamed and human. I am so fucking in love with her!

*****      *****

A perfect example of minority rule is a baby in the house.

            “Mrs. Grey, we need to check the store for safety before I allow you to enter,” Melissa said in her no nonsense tone.
            “Melissa, it’s a big store, people will come in. You cannot possibly check everyone in there!” Anastasia protests.
            “Anaaa!” I chide her in a slightly exasperated tone.
            “Why couldn’t they have done this before we came here?” she asks.
But, I know exactly why. This is the new method they’re using: the safety rings. They’re only opening a certain perimeter of safety ring by blending into the crowd like they too are regular shoppers whereas Sawyer and Melissa are connected and Taylor and Reynolds are holding the inner perimeter.

            Taylor holds his ear, as he hears Sawyer’s confirmation. He exits the car and opens my door. Reynolds does the same for Anastasia. Ryan is at the home duty today since Reynolds and Ryan are on rotation. This is all for extra precaution because the paparazzi is now chasing Anastasia to get pregnancy pictures and to get a glimpse of her pregnancy style or find us together to see how she’s treated. It only raises Anastasia’s stress level. Even a simple outing to a store becomes a massive chore. Currently, Anastasia is more popular among the paparazzi than Prince William’s prospective wife Kate for having captured my heart and getting pregnant right after. I do not like this one bit, and it’s keeping our security on alert at all times. We’ve had several brush offs with them since I was engaged to Ana some of which were completely unpleasant. I don’t want them to scare my wife and put her and our baby’s lives in danger. The momentary discomfort is worth the safety it provides.
            Taylor drove us to the only store with the safest cribs that links new and emerging technologies to monitor the baby’s local environment. I’ve read that a number of babies die due to sudden infant death syndrome. I’d like to prevent that at all cost. There are some crib systems that integrates the air circulation, video monitor as well as a built in lifting system to pick the baby up. It will help Anastasia right after she gives birth. Because, I don’t want her to strain herself to lift little Teddy. This one particular model I have researched also automatically rocks the baby to help with sleeping patterns. Now, it’s only getting Anastasia agree with it because she might just opt for the style of the crib foregoing the safety features this particular one I liked.
            Anastasia is surprised when she sees the size of the store. It’s three stories of only baby items from strollers to cribs to clothes, bottles and other knick knacks that I need to learn to identify. The store manager greets us right away.
            “What a pleasure to have you here, Mrs. And Mr. Grey!” she gushes. “How may we help you today?”
            “We’re going to look at the cribs and bassinets.”
            “Of course! I’d be happy to show them to you and explain their functions. Is there any brand or style in particular you prefer?” she asks.
            “We,” Anastasia says looking at me for my agreement, “prefer a color that may go with just about anything.
            “No rich or deep colors, then?” the manager asks looking at me, a little flustered. I, in turn look at my wife deferring the answer to her.
            “No, not in our baby’s room.”
            “I see ma’am. Are you shopping for a boy or girl? Sometimes styles vary depending on the baby’s gender. Quite a few parents have fallen in love with our Cinderella series with the carriage shaped cribs,” she says walking us towards the cribs. “Or, if you prefer it for boys, then we have race car shaped cribs which are quite popular among the expecting first time fathers of little baby boys.”
            “I don’t want something gender specific. What we want is a safe, functional as well as a stylish crib.”
            She walks us to various styles, color choices as well as price ranges.
            “How about that one?” I point to an unopened box of a modern looking crib.
            “We haven’t set the floor model up for it yet. It just arrived from London. Apparently, it’s one of the safest models not only in Europe, but the world. As you can see from the box, it has quite a few modern safety features. Because it deviates from the traditional cribs, it scares some parents. Because, they want parenting to be as organic as possible, sometimes quite a few security features make the first time parents a little over anxious. It may take away from the experience,” she says trying to lead us to a frillier model.
            “Open it, and set it up. Let’s see the ease of use and I want Mrs. Grey to be able to see all its features before we make a decision,” I say with a commanding voice. She clears her throat.
            “Of course, Mr. Grey,” she gushes. “I’ll have to get one of our handymen. They take a lot shorter than I do in setting them up,” she says with a compulsory smile. “Excuse me please, Mrs. and Mr. Grey. I’ll go get our tech!” she says stumbling on her words as she leaves our company. 
            “What was that about?” Anastasia asks.
            “Anastasia, I want our baby to be safe. He’s not going to the castle ball like Cinderella. I’m looking at these and seeing all kinds of way the baby can hurt himself when he manages to stand up on his own or you for that matter trying to get him out of the crib. They forgo certain safety features to add style!” I say.
            “Christian, I’m sure FDA or whoever is looking into the safety of these items approved them for sale.”
            “Ana, your old Beetle was also allowed to be on the road even though it was a complete death trap. When it comes to you or our baby, bare minimum is unacceptable. I want the safest. I’ve read that over 2000 babies die from SIDS and that’s mainly because of unsafe sleeping practices. No! I’m an anxious parent. Our child has to be in safe!”
            “I agree!”
            “Besides, I thought you wanted a color that matched with everything…. And…” then it dawns on me that she may have agreed with me on something. “What did you just say?” I ask shocked.
            “I said I agree with you Mr. Grey,” she says with a smirk.
            “Are you smirking at me Mrs. Grey?”
            “I am, Mr. Grey,” she says biting her lower lip, then she gets her voice to a whisper and leans up to my ear, “But, I know you aren’t going to do anything about it because I am with you 100% when it comes to Teddy’s safety. And right now, I think you are so damn hot when you are fervently protecting our baby, if we weren’t in a store, I’d ask you for a repeat performance of this morning, right here, right now!”
            God damn it, Ana! She is arousing me so publicly, inconveniently and so fucking suddenly. I give out a low growl.
            “Taylor!” I shout.
            “Yes, sir,” he appears beside us.
            “Have the store delivered this particular brand and model to the big house. No need to set it up,” I say without breaking my gaze away from Anastasia.
            “Certainly, sir,” he says.
            “We’ll go and browse other items. We don’t need the manager’s escort,” I say. I need to walk this erection off without the prying eyes.
            “Come, Mrs. Grey,” I say tugging her in the same tone when I say ‘come’ when she’s beneath me. She slowly exhales her breath and follows me.

*****      *****

The Enemy Territory

Let your plans be dark and impenetrable as night, and when you move, fall like a thunderbolt.

Sun Tzu, The Art of War

            This is the fifth burner phone he is using. Each call required a new one. He didn’t want to leave any trails after all. He is a predator learning each and every move of his enemy. He underestimated him. He had all these years to study him and yet he didn’t. He was too confident; too arrogant that such a blow and defeat could come from that scrawny boy whom he heard didn’t even manage to speak until he was six years old. In those years, he thought that Christian had mental deficiencies. Well, if someone was as fucked as he was as a child, it stood the reason for him to be mentally scarred for life, didn’t it? Those ones would either become sociopaths, criminals or completely go the other way around and become some meek individual with no backbone. The rare few would become the ruthless in their chosen field, like himself, he thought. 
             Oh, he had hatred for him alright. But he also had a devious fascination and decided to understand his prey inside out. How did the boy who was a charity case for his former wife/sub became the master of the universe he lived in? He would find out and defeat him with his own weapons in his own fucking game and do it so slowly and most painfully.
            “The report!” he barked into the burner simply in his ever present deep commanding voice, ordering, leaving no questions about his expectations. He would like to think that if there ever was a god, that’s what he would have sounded like. He expected weekly reports from his hired gun. Sometimes they were in an anonymous digital format which crossed at least five different locations to be delivered to him. Pictures, sounds, videos... He needed to know his prey’s routines, means, travels, the way in which he coddled his wife or all that he cared for. But he already firmly and rightfully decided that the wife was the way to hit him. From the news circulating on the papers and his ears on the ground confirmed that the bitch nearly got killed to save her sister-in-law. Imagine what she would do to save him?
He never liked the emotion of love. He firmly believed that it’s one of men’s greatest weaknesses and for those unfortunate enough to have enemies, a great tool to stab you with. Nothing and no one would hurt as much as the pain inflicted by or through one you loved ones. In fact, if he did it correctly, he would leave his enemy in eternal torment for the kingdom to come and when he delivered the final blow, he would know that it was him who fucked his life over, just like he did to him! But until that moment came, he needed to get to know the enemy. If he was going to catch the tiger by the tail, he better know how fucking snuff the life out of that said tiger.
            “His jet is getting prepped to leave to New York. The whole package is going to be on it, including four of his dogs. Do you want me to install a small gift to be delivered midway through their destination?”
            Was this fucking psycho an idiot? Way to alert the Homeland Security by blowing up his plane in mid-flight! He’s been a fucking mercenary outside the country far too long. He didn’t want a federal crime! He wanted it to be personal. And how would snuffing the life out of Grey, his wife and dogs be fun in this method? He wouldn’t get to tell him he was the one who fucked him!
            “No! We stick to my plan! You do not move, make decisions or even breathe without my permission. We wait. I will deliver the final blow. You are just the means in which to get me to that point. That’s what you’re being paid for. Excessively, I might add.”
            “You’re the boss, but there are ways to make it look like an accident.”
The boss squeezes the bridge of his nose as if to ward off the oncoming headache. What a fucking idiot! Grey’s chopper was sabotaged by Hyde. Did he really think that a second aircraft incident would be accounted as an accident? And how original was that, really? Why would he, the master dominant, copy an incompetent, angry idiot with no evident self-control like Hyde?
            “I want his and his wife’s schedule for the next six months. You will get it for me and do it stealthily. I make the plans and I tell you when to deliver those plans.” He knew all warfare is based on deception. If he were to be victorious in this plan, he couldn’t have been hasty like he did with Hyde. In order for him to win, he had to win first; the game had to be check mate in his mind before he started it, before he started his war against Grey. Because, only defeated warriors went to war first then seek to win like the way he did last time. This was different. This was a winner-takes-all game. All the pieces had to fall in the right place.
            “His schedule? I can follow him and know the routine, but it would cost you more for me to get his schedule from a company with as many layers of server protection in his computer systems as the Pentagon!”
            “You never go to the main gate if you were to storm a fort! Didn't that teach you in whatever secret government organization you were a part of? You find a tunnel, a Trojan horse to ride in. You have one already. The SIP’s system is the way to do it.”
            “I tried. It’s been overhauled.” He really was exasperating
            “Must I spell it out for you? They accept manuscript submissions. All you have to do it is to create a tunnel which is not a virus at all. Then you deliver the virus through the tunnel you’ve created. You don’t have to infect anything. In fact, why don’t you just crack her assistant’s smart phone? That would be the best way to enter into their system. You deliver the tunnel to her smart phone, and once she’s in the SIP Wi-Fi, you download Grey’s wife’s schedule. As far as the computer system is concerned, you, the Trojan horse will appear as her assistant, and the machines are not humans. They don’t get suspicious of other machines. Only if you fuck up, that is! They only see her phone and it’s friendly to the SIP system. Tie your tunnel into Grey’s wife’s email or smart phone then you are linked to Grey directly!” he says exasperated. The line on the other side is silent for a moment.
            “That…actually just might work brilliantly!” his henchman says. Of course it can! Because he was the one who thought of it!  
            “If they’re both out of town tomorrow, it might be the best time to work on the assistant’s phone. I want updates next week, same day, and same time. Meanwhile you continue to deliver your scheduled reports. Are you riding behind the Calvary tomorrow?” he asks implying if he’s flying after the Greys to New York.
            “Yes, sir, to both counts. Right after I deliver the bridge to the assistant,” the henchman responds in his deep voice. The boss finally presses the ‘End’ button on the burner. Takes the battery and the SIM card out breaking it into pieces, and then tosses the whole thing over the pier and into the ocean and walks away.

Hi Girls! Chapter 22 is coming up in the next couple of hours. Needs editing. Thanks for your patience!