Mending Dr. Steele: Chapter 24—The Most Beautiful Girl In The World

I wanted to post yesterday, but my dear friend is in the hospital in the ICU with pneumonia. She is sedated and on a breathing tube and we don’t know if she is going to make it. Those of you who pray, please send up prayers for my friend and her family. This is very hard on all of us, but particularly hard on them. Without further delay, on with the story.

I do not own Fifty Shades Trilogy or the characters. They belong to E. L. James. I am only exercising my right to exploit, abuse, and mangle the characters to MY discretion in MY story in MY interpretation as a fan. I hope you—as a fellow fan—enjoy it, too.

Chapter 24—The Most Beautiful Girl In The World

GREY

These lazy bastards! Elliot and I have been awake for hours. We have worked out, showered, and eaten. I have had time to run errands and come back. Now, I have called, texted, and yelled for every last one of the rest of these assholes to wake the hell up so that we can get to the wedding. If they think I am going to watch all of my hard work go to waste, they are out of their fucking minds.

**Are you awake? **

I text Butterfly for ideas.

**Been awake for a while. What’s up? **

**Are the ladies awake? **

**They better be! We’ve got a lot of shit to do today! **

I could almost hear here screaming.

**Is that a yes? **

After a pause…

**That’s a yes, Smartass. We’re on our way to the spa. **

**How did you get them out of bed? **

This pause was so long, I almost texted her again.

**You’re kidding, right? **

**No, I’m not kidding. How do I get these lazy, drunken fucks out of the bed? **

**Go in and wake them. **

How the hell do you expect for me to do that—teleportation!?

**So what should I do? Kick the door down? **

**No, use a key. Tell me you are not this slow. **

Oh, she’s going to pay for that.

**I would use a key if I had one. **

I almost wish that my head could go through the phone and bite her right now. There’s some spanking in her future. Now I feel the blackberry vibrating and it’s Butterfly.

“Why would you give me such an obvious solution without an obvious solution?” I say when I answer the phone.

Because the solution is obvious. You don’t expect those hung-over heathens to wake up on their own, do you?” she blasts back.

“No! That’s why I’m trying to wake them up, But-ter-fly.” I’m starting to get irritated with her now.

Then use the keys to get into their rooms, Chris-tian!” She gave that shit right back to me.

“And how do you suppose I do that, An-a-sta-sia? I’m not into collecting keys from grown men.” Now the line is quiet… for a little too long.

Oh, hell! Are you telling me that you don’t have the keys to the rooms!?” She is screaming now.

“Why the fuck would I have the keys to their rooms?” I yell back.

To wake their lazy asses up! Get the keys, Mr. CEO!” Oooooohhh, she really wants a fight today.

“Well, excuse me, but men don’t throw their keys at other men, Doctor!” I hiss.

They didn’t throw their keys at me, Genius. I got them from the front desk!” she hisses back. What the…?

“Why did they give the keys to you?” I demand. I hear this kind of gasping, gagging sound and I can almost see her in my head doing that little bobblehead thing that she does when she’s angry.

Fuck of all every-loving fucks the rooms are in my name, Sir!” she says in one angry breath.

Oh, shit.

Obvious solution with an obvious solution…

“Why didn’t you just say that?” I ask, my voice softer. She actually stutters for a moment, and I can see the bobblehead in my mind’s eye again.

You know what? I’m going to say that you are having a lot of stress today because of this wedding and the fact that you can’t wake a bunch of drunken men and I’m not going to take this personally. Take your brilliant ass down to the goddamn desk and get the goddamn keys to the goddamn block of rooms in your goddamn name and wake those goddamn fuckers up, get them fed and dressed and get them to the goddamn hotel in time for the wedding!” and she hangs up. Whoa… she’s pissed. Good one, Grey. The asshole strikes again. I go in search of Jason.

*-*

It took an hour and a half to get these idiots out of the bed, showered and dressed. Two of them were balls deep in a stripper when I walked in. I simply offered apologies and told them we had to get going. Both of them requested 10 more minutes to which I nodded and moved on to the next room.

I had planned to make these characters work out or run to burn off some of that alcohol, but that’s not going to happen now. The entire wedding party is spending the night at the Woodmark where the wedding and reception will be held and I have to wrangle these fuckers and get them over there so that we can get dressed, so they just have to deal with the hangovers—except for the two that were getting their rocks off in strange women a little while ago.

It took another hour to get these losers into the SUVs but we are finally on our way to the Woodmark. Jason and some of the detail will go back to the Four Seasons and get the ladies’ belongings during the ceremony since they will be dressed when they arrive. I arrange for Butterfly to have something a little sparkly waiting for her when she gets back to the suite before they come to the ceremony. Hopefully that will smooth things over a bit for me being such an asshole to her earlier.

A few hours later, I have finally worked this group into something presentable. This is probably the only moment that I am happy that I’m not in the wedding. While Elliot and I are wearing very fashionable Brioni tuxedos, these dorks are wearing these champagne get-ups with pastel ties! I mean, don’t get me wrong—they are a good cut and a good fit, but champagne and baby blue? No… not for me.

I feel kind of sorry for Philip. He’s standing there in the front of the church truly looking like he’s about to piss his pants. Quincy’s standing next to him and the music starts to play signaling the entry of the bridal party. I watch the fellows walk down the aisle in their monkey suits, but I must admit, the women make them look good. Up there all alone, those suits do nothing for me. However, standing next to those beautiful women in dresses of complimenting colors, those suits don’t look half bad.

Again, I’m wishing that I was in the wedding.

The Norah Jones song had to be played twice to get everyone down the aisle. Last, but certainly not least, my Butterfly comes floating down. She looks better than any of the other ladies in the wedding party. Her knee sticks out playfully with each step she takes and she holding a small bouquet of blue and white flowers in front of her. She is positively glowing. You would think it was her wedding.

She looks up at me as she passes and I’m trying to gauge if she is still angry with me. She puts her hand on her necklace and mouths, “thank you.” I breathe a visible sigh of relief before mouthing back, “You’re beautiful.” She smiles and proceeds to her place on the brides side.

Next, we hear a delicate piano and a beautiful tune playing and I recognize it as I Finally Found Someone by Barbra Streisand and Bryan Adams. I only know the song because The Mirror Has Two Faces is one of my Mom’s favorite movies. We all stand and in walks Maxine. I hear Philip gasp and for a moment, I think he’s going to faint. She floats down the aisle towards her man and I feel that twinge of jealousy once again, but I know that it won’t last for long. I look over at Butterfly who is trying not to cry, and failing miserably. I know I shouldn’t be saying this with a very stunning bride walking down the aisle, but my Butterfly is the most beautiful woman in the world.

Maxine and Philip opt for traditional vows and I watch my Butterfly during the entire ceremony. I am reading her facial expressions—happy, sad, a bit melancholy at times. She never makes eye-contact with me, not for the entire ceremony. Is she still angry with me? Was I mistaken? My heart falls a bit, but I just pay attention to the ceremony, counting the seconds until it is over and occasionally glancing in her direction hoping for a brief connection that won’t happen. I clap mechanically when the officiant announces Mr. and Mrs. Guest to the assembly. Then I watch helplessly while that Quincy fucker happily tucks my girl’s arm into his and walks her out of the room.

I almost didn’t leave the area. I waited for nearly everyone else to leave before I even thought about it.

“Bro, what’s up? You know it’s bad form not to come and congratulate the bride and groom.” Elliot snaps me out of my sulking. Shit, I forgot about the receiving line.

“Yeah, I’m on my way,” I stand and he looks at me.

“Ready for the reception?” he says examining my expression and demeanor, no doubt.

“Yep, so ready to get this party started, but tell these idiots not to get drunk like last night, please. I don’t have keys to anybody’s room but mine and Ana’s tonight, and I won’t be responsible for waking anybody up after this!” Elliot laughs at me and we go out to greet the receiving line.

*-*

I’ve made sure that I was always in her line of sight while the pictures were being taken. That ordeal took forever. The wedding was in the Lake Washington room but the reception is being moved to the Marina room. All of the banquet rooms have a beautiful view of the Sound, but I have to say that I like the Marina Room better.

I had held her hand a little longer than usual in the receiving line. Weary of trying to gauge her mood, I just asked her if she was still angry with me. She kissed me on my cheek and assured me that she was not angry, but informed me that I was holding up the line and had to move on. I smiled and moved on to shake Valerie’s hand.

We finally make our way over to the reception. Well, I should probably note that I could have gone over to the reception at any time, but I wasn’t letting Butterfly out of my sight. That fucker Quincy was loving this shit. He wasn’t doing anything overtly rude or disrespectful, but I could tell that he was getting a kick out of the fact that this was making me highly uncomfortable. She has to eat dinner at the bride’s table, sitting next to him, while I get to sit with Elliot and Marilyn and some other people who I don’t even know. The food was spectacular and I did everything in my power to be sociable and not act like an aloof asshole. It was pretty hard, though, since Butterfly was sitting so far away from me and the guy on the other side of our table recognized me and kept trying to talk business, if you can call it that. When the DJ finally announces the bride and groom’s first dance, I couldn’t wait to excuse myself and get the hell away from that table!


STEELE

Oh good Lord, I can truly say that I am glad that we have finally gotten to this point… the damn reception! Let’s eat, drink, and be merry for fuck’s sake, although I won’t be too merry with Christian sitting damn near on the other side of the room. I look over at him a few times during the reception and he seems okay, but something is certainly off. He can’t be happy that we are not sitting together. I’m glad Elliot is with him so that he’s not completely the odd man out. Oh, Christian, you’re doing a good job but I know something is wrong.

The DJ announces that the bride and groom will have their first dance and right after they stand, Valerie scrambles into the seat next to me.

“Oh, good God, I’m so glad we finally got those two down the aisle!” she exclaims quietly.

“I know, right?” I say, taking another sip of my champagne. “Maxie was really starting to lose it around the end there. Then those assholes at Heirloom—good grief, I thought she was going to faint last night!”

“Well, as soon as we are done with this dancing shit, I am going to attach myself to my man. I’ve had enough this separate shit. I need some Elliot time.”

“I know what you mean,” I say looking over towards Christian’s table.

He’s gone.

Where did he go?

“Val, did you see where Christian went?” She looks around the room then says, “I don’t see him.”

“Me either.” Maybe he just went to the restroom. Get a grip, Dr. Steele.

“They’re playing our song,” Quincy says as he stands and holds his hand out to me. Ugh! I forgot the bridal party had to dance with the bride and groom. Their first dance song is Lifehouse You and Me. I would certainly rather be dancing to this song with a certain someone else. I look up at Quincy, a smile stretching across his face that could rival the Cheshire Cat. You are trying to start a fire that you won’t be able to extinguish, Mr. Foster. Luckily, Christian is nowhere to be found. I guess he knew this moment would come and decided to spare himself the agony of having to watch. I politely take Quincy’s hand and join him on the dance floor with the bride and groom. He has a single long-stem rose in his hand as he leads me to the floor. I hope he doesn’t expect me to tango.

“So, do you have girlfriend, Quincy?” Dammit! Why did I ask that question? Now he’s going to think that I’m interested. He chuckles a little.

“Why do you ask, Anastasia? Are you looking to fill the position?” His voice is very suggestive.

“No,” I say with a dismissive smile. “As you already know, I am very taken.” He nods.

“I know.” I gaze at him waiting for an answer. “It’s pretty obvious. When a guy comes to a wedding, he’s looking for the single women. The first place he looks are the bridesmaids and you and the Raven are definitely locked down.” The Raven?

“Locked down?” I don’t like his choice of words.

“Hate it or love it, Chestnut, but Big Money Grey has his stamp all over you and Not-As-Big Money Grey makes it completely clear that your friend Vanna is off the market.”

“Val,” I correct him. He cocks his head at me. “Her name is Val.” He shrugs.

“Oh. Well, maybe she’s just not as memorable as you.” He spins me out and spins me back. Shit! Where is Christian?

“So, why all the flirting, then?” I ask him.

“Well, a man can have a little harmless fun, can’t he?” he responds. “As far as I know, I haven’t said anything inappropriate or offensive, so he can’t come and pound my head in. It’s wishful thinking anyway, I know that.” I observe him with cynicism. “And why did you ask if I had a girlfriend?” he asks, his eyes slightly hopeful.

“Reverse psychology,” I answer truthfully. “If you did have a girlfriend, my asking you about her would have immediately brought her to mind and may have calmed down the ‘lover-boy’ effect.”

“And since I don’t?” he raises his eyebrow.

“It still had the required effect. We immediately started talking about my boyfriend.” I smile victoriously at him and he nods.

“Wow, pretty and smart. Very shrewd, Doctor,” he says as the dance ends. He hands me the rose. “Mr. Grey has a very lovely girl.” He kisses me on the cheek and I freeze, horrified. Christian is going to murder this guy! As if he were reading my mind, he answers, “I’ll take my chances. I may never get an opportunity again.” He smiles and leaves me standing on the dance floor, stunned.

“What was that all about?” Gary asks walking up to me on the dance floor.

“I don’t know,” I say. “Wishful thinking, I guess. He better be glad Mr. Grey didn’t see him.” I look around for Christian again and he’s still nowhere in sight. Alright, Christian, enough with the sulking. The dance is over now. It’s only now that I realize that Gary has a long-stem red rose, too. “What, are they passing those things out somewhere?”

“Yeah. You want it?” He hands me the rose.

“Why wouldn’t you give it to Marilyn?” He shrugs.

“She already has one.” I show him mine.

“I already have one, too.” He puts the rose in my hand.

“Well, now you have two.” He smiles and walks away quickly. Oh, good Lord! I hope Christian sees whoever is passing these things out or he is going to go super-nova at Maxie and Phil’s reception! I start looking around to see who else has roses and no one else that I can see is carrying them, until…

“This is some spread!” Elliot walks up behind me and, quite frankly, scared the shit out of me.

“Dammit, Elliot, you scared me shitless. Give a girl a warning next time!”

“Sorry, I thought that’s what I did.” He shrugs. He has a rose, too.

“Where are these coming from?” I ask him.

“Some guy outside. Here.” He hands me the rose.

“I have two already. Why don’t you give it to Val?” I ask confused.

“Val already has one,” he responds and I raise my eyebrow.

“Yeah, Gary already tried that. What’s going on?” Something is definitely fishy. Why are all the guys giving their roses to me and not to their girlfriends… or hell, even the damn bride?

“Just take the rose. You want it… trust me.” He all but shoves the rose at me and walks away. What the hell, man? I’m now standing here with three roses from three guys and I know something is up, I just don’t know what.

“Wow! You’ve got a lot of admirers, huh?” Val says from behind me. I turn around and she’s holding a rose, too.

“Where did these come from?” I ask her.

“Some guy outside is handing them out.”

“Why?” I ask and she shrugs. “And why the fuck is everybody shrugging at me?”

“Well, hell, Steele, if it’s that important to you, come and see for yourself!” She grabs my hand and drags me out the back of the hotel and across the lawn. Fuck! It’s February and it’s cold out here!

“I need a coat, Val! What the hell?”

“Just come over here. It’s warm.” She leads to what could be at large enclosed tent or a cabana… I can’t tell in the dark, but I can tell you for certain that it wasn’t here the last time we looked at the venue. Does someone have another event going on right in the middle of the reception? Maxie will be furious! We go inside and, sure enough, it looks like there’s another party going on.

“What are you guys doing in here? Maxie and Phil are going to murder you!” I exclaim.

“We’re celebrating!” Al says, holding a glass of champagne and another one of these damn roses.

“Celebrating what!? The reception is inside!” I exclaim. All this damn work on this wedding and they are all out here? “Please, you guys, let’s go back inside before Maxie finds out we’re gone, if she hasn’t already…”

“Shit, it’s cold out there! Did we miss anything?” Maxie and Phil burst into the cabana, Maxie wearing Phil’s tuxedo jacket over her beautiful wedding dress. I am truly befuddled now.

“You guys are insane!” I say. “The whole lot of you! What the hell is going on!?”

“Whew! Sorry we’re late! Any champagne left?” What in the blue hell? Grace and Carrick just crashed the party. I look over at Maxie who embraces Grace warmly. I don’t know what to make of any of this. How does Maxie possibly know Grace and Carrick–through Helping Hands or CCFW somehow maybe? Why did she never mention it? She and Christian were barely speaking to each other last month and she’s friends with Grace and Carrick? My bemusement is further compounded when I look around and see that Mia and Ethan are already part of the festivities, drinking champagne and holding roses. I must look like I’m stunned again as I observe Grace and Carrick each take a single long-stem rose from a nearby table and Al comes over to me—with his rose—and garners my attention.

“Earth to Jewel,” he says waving his hand in front of my face. I just point at the Greys.

“I don’t understand, Allen. What’s going on?” I ask softly, thoroughly bemused.

“Well, it’s like this, Jewel.” He puts his arm around my waist. “We’re all actually here because we love you.” Huh?

ME!? They all love me!? This is Maxie and Phil’s day. Why would they do this for me today? What is this, some type of intervention??

“I… I… Me?” I squeak. I can’t even form a coherent sentence.

“Yes, you,” Maxie says, and she gives me a kiss. “We love you,” and she gives me a rose. She steps aside and everyone in the room who hasn’t given me a rose gathers around to kiss me and present me with another long-stemmed rose—Al, James, Phil, Marilyn, Val, Mia, Ethan, and now Grace and Carrick. I’m so overwhelmed by the gesture that I had to fight back my tears. This would be perfect if…

“Hi Annie-Babe.” Daddy! I run to my father and throw my free arm around him.

“Daddy! They got you in on this, too?” He hugs me warmly.

“I wouldn’t miss it for the world. It seems that quite a few people love you,” he says with a smile, but he has tears in his eyes.

“Daddy, what’s wrong?”

“I just… love you so much, Annie,” he says, his voice cracking and a single tear falls down his face. I wipe his tear.

“I love you, too, Daddy.” He hands me a rose and I only just now see Mandy standing behind him, her five-month baby bump delicately hidden under a flowing dress.

“Mandy, you too?” I exclaim.

“Of course, me too!” She says, embracing me warmly and handing me a rose. Now I have a baker’s dozen. Suddenly, I feel a strange squeeze in my chest.

Where’s Christian?

He’s been MIA since the first dance. Why wouldn’t he be here—among all of the people who love me? He’s not having flashbacks of New Years Eve, is he? I try hard not to show my disappointment at the fact that the man that I love would miss out on this gesture. It doesn’t get past me that a perfect stranger—for the most part—was the first person to give me a rose and my man is not even present. What the hell is that all about? As if he is reading my mind, Daddy is by my side again.

“I know, Honey, but don’t worry. He hasn’t deserted you.” He takes my free hand and leads me to the rear of the cabana. He pulls back a heavy curtain and escorts me into a room.

Oh. My. God.

The room is filled with exquisite vases of long-stemmed red roses all on Grecian column stands of varying heights. I am spellbound. This is absolutely breathtaking! I actually have to walk through a forest of flowers to find a clearing. I turn around and Daddy is gone. I turn back again and there he is…

Christian…

… standing against a back drop of hundreds—maybe thousands—of roses. He looks magnificent!

“Hey Baby,” he says softly.

“H… hey,” I reply, just above a whisper.

“Where did you get the flowers?” His voice sound like smooth, sweet honey.

“My… um… my friends… and family…” Where is my damn voice?

“So, I guess that just leaves me, huh?” he says, striding slowly and confidently over to me. My mouth starts to water. He is so sexy.

“Um… I guess,” I breathe. Before I can register what he is doing, he kisses my hands and drops down on one knee.

OH. HOLY. HELL. THIS IS IT! THIS IS IT! HE’S FINALLY GOING TO DO IT! THIS IS IT!

“I breathe for you, Anastasia. My heart beats only for you. You are my life and without you, I am nothing. I have to make you mine, wholly and completely. It is the reason that I was created. It is my soul’s purpose. Please, Butterfly… make me whole. Don’t make me wait any longer, please, Baby. My life can’t truly begin until it truly begins with you. Please, Ana… marry me.”

The words float around me and caress me like a warm blanket. I can’t breathe. I drop all the roses in my arm and my now free hand flies from my mouth to my chest and back to my mouth again. The tears are on auto pilot and I can’t speak. I can’t even think to form the word I know that I must say. I am weeping and we are silent for what feels like hours, but I know that it’s only been moments. Christian’s face begins to fall.

“Ana? May I… have an answer?”

Say something you stupid bat!

I open my mouth to try to speak and the Bitch figuratively slaps me upside the head. The words finally come out.

“Oui, oui, oh mon dieu, OUI! De combien de façons veux-tu que je te dise oui?! Oui! Oui! Oui! Oui…”

He is on his feet before the jabbering is even finished and he is kissing me feverishly. Oh my God, he has asked me to marry him! Christian has finally asked me to marry him… at Maxie and Phil’s wedding reception. He hijacked Maxie and Phil’s wedding reception…

I’ll worry about that later.

Right now, I am doing everything that I can not to climb into this man’s soul and disappear inside him forever! Oh my God, I love him so much. He lifts me off the ground and continues to give me the most passionate kiss I have ever received in my life… even from him. Before I know it, my leg bends behind me Hollywood style and I am swallowed in the whole cliché romance of this moment. It couldn’t have possibly been more perfect.

He finally releases my lips and buries his head in my neck, holding me close to him in a sincere hug and portraying to me that he would hold me here forever if he could. I sigh deeply as I close my eyes and hold him in my arms, savoring the moment even more. For the first time, I know that words are escaping him. He is never silent… only when he sleeps. He always knows what to say. Even when he is not speaking, his eyes say it all. Right now, he is silent… and I feel all that he cannot say.

I love you, too, Baby… with everything that I have.

He kisses my face and my lips gently as he pulls his forehead to mine. I feel his… relief. Did he really think I would say “no?” Could he think that was even possible? I cup his face in my hands and rub my nose against his, gently kissing his lips and hoping he can feel my apology for making him doubt for even a second. We sigh at the same time and he gently places me on my feet. He reaches into his inside pocket and pulls out that famous red box that I know so well. When he opens the box, I nearly swoon.

It’s a beautiful platinum setting… I have discovered that Mr. Grey rarely, if ever, purchases any other metal. The band is fairly thick—not one of those girly rings, thick like a men’s wedding band. There are three round diamonds set inside the band on either side of a large princess-cut center stone—not gaudy, but certainly not small. It. Is. Gorgeous!

I burst into tears again as he grasps my shaking hand and removes my promise ring from my left hand. He gently places it on the third finger of my right hand, takes the exquisite piece of jewelry from the red box, and slides it onto my ring finger before giving my finger a gentle kiss.

It’s official. We’re engaged.

I thrust my fingers into his hair and pull his lips down to me again, my tears mingling in our kiss. His hands grip me tightly, possessively. He is staking his claim, as if he had to. He moans in my mouth and the kiss is quickly becoming more erotic, more possessive…

“I love you,” he whispers when he finally finds his voice, the words whispered as a promise… and a warning. I understand, Christian. I understand completely.

“I’m yours,” I breathe.

We finally enter the “party” again to complete silence. I know I look an utter mess, my make-up no doubt staining my face if I have any left at all. I raise my hand and reveal my engagement ring and the room erupts in applause. The girls come over to me squealing.

“Oh my God, it’s stunning!” Val says, nearly snatching my hand off of my arm. Ow!

“Careful, Val, that’s attached!” I scold.

“Oh! Sorry, Steele,” she says. Maxie walks over to me.

“Maxie, I’m so sorry. We completely hijacked your reception!” I say, contritely.

“Are you kidding?” Maxie says. “This is the coolest wedding gift ever! My girl got engaged on my wedding day—at my reception!” Oh thank God. Wait a minute…

“Here I am worried about how you would feel, and you were in on it! Of course you were! Dammit!” I say, mocking disdain. “You are all horrible, rotten people to be in on this and leave me hanging! How did I not at least have a clue about this!?” I stomp my feet indignantly, but laugh good-naturedly. Grace and Carrick are the first to come forward, and I see Christian on his blackberry. Who can he be calling at this hour?

“As if we really need to say this, welcome to the family, Ana.” Grace embraces me followed by Carrick.

“Welcome,” he says, warmly. Mia is bouncing insanely behind them.

“Ohmygod, ohmygod, ohmygod! I’m so excited! Do you think we can have a double wedding?” she squeals.

“Not a chance,” Christian says calmly after just ending his call, and the party bursts into laughter. Mia scowls at her brother.

“Screw you, Grey!” she says, sticking her tongue out at Christian. She turns back to me. “We’re going to be sisters!” she says, squeezing me happily.

“Okay, Mia, step aside. There’s a line behind you,” Elliot teases. Mia scowls at her other brother but begrudgingly steps aside.

“Welcome to the family, Ana Montana,” he says warmly. “I’m glad we’re going to be keeping you around.”

“So am I,” I say with a smile. I am hugged and congratulated by all of my friends and family and I just want to choke them all for keeping this from me!

“How did you get Sir Quincy on board with this? I thought I would have to douse him in cold water!” I ask. Christian scowls.

“He jumped at the opportunity to give you a rose, even if he never gets the chance again,” he says. I shrug and look down at my hand to admire my beautiful ring.

“We’re engaged, Christian!” I say excited. He smiles a full 32-teeth smile.

“We’re engaged,” he repeats.

“That means we’re getting married,” I giggle.

“That it does,” he says with equal enthusiasm. “When do you want to do this?” Wow, I hadn’t thought about that. That means another wedding to plan… egad! I know one thing for certain, though…

“I don’t want to wait too long,” I respond. He smiles beautifully at me.

“On that, we agree.”

“Good. I’m still in wedding mentality. Let’s set a date,” I declare.

“You’re setting a date now?” Mia squeals.

“Looks that way,” Christian replies.

“Annie-babe… what’s the hurry?” Dad asks. I shrug.

“Why wait?” I reply. “You and Mandy knew that you wanted to be together and you just…” Then it hit me. Dad and Mandy’s engagement was spawned when Mandy announced her pregnancy. I must have a look of complete horror on my face because my father actually laughs at me. “Oh, Dad, no!” I gasp. “Christian is an honorable man, but I think I would know about that before he did.”

“Okay, okay, Annie. I just wanted to be sure,” he says through his chuckles. Even Christian is laughing at me.

“So now that we’ve established that, do you have an idea when you want to get married, Butterfly?” I think about it.

“Well, it will have to be once it gets warmer,” I tell him. “No offense, Maxie, but this cold is for the birds!”

“None taken,” she responds. “It’s an acquired taste.”

“So, February and March are out,” Christian says.

“And April… sometimes it snows in April,” I point out. Christian nods.

“Not to mention your birthday is in April, Bro,” Elliot points out. Christian glares at him. “What?” Elliot has no idea what he’s done wrong. I do, so I quickly change the subject.

“So that leaves May or June,” I announce.

“I’m due in June,” Mandy says.

“Okay, so May.”

“Sometimes, babies are born early,” Grace says. I sigh heavily.

“July?” I say, with little enthusiasm.

“No, no. May or June,” Mandy says. “Don’t put your wedding off because of me. We will just have to work around me. We’ll be fine.” She smiles at my Dad. I breathe a sigh of relief.

“Okay, so May or June,” I say again.

“June,” Christian says wistfully.

“June?” I repeat.

“Yes, June. The 29th… the day we first got together.” He slides his arms around my waist. June 29th. As late into June as we can possibly get, but the date is so significant for both of us.

Got together?” Elliot says suggestively, holding Val in the same way that Christian is holding me. For the love of God, Elliot, my father is here!

“It’s our anniversary, Horndog,” I say casually. Even though it is also the day that we first had sex, my father doesn’t need to know that. Al chuckles because his damn-near-photographic memory knows that is also the first time Christian and I played “hide the sausage.”

“So, ladies and gentlemen, we have date. On June 29, 2013, Ms. Anastasia Rose Steele will officially become Mrs. Anastasia Rose Grey,” Christian announces proudly.

“Steele-Grey,” I correct him. He frowns. “I’m licensed under Steele. It has to be part of my name.” He pouts a bit and looks at his mother, who nods at him.

“Okay,” he relents and I can’t help but laugh as he sounds like a disappointed six-year-old. I put my hand on his cheek.

“Don’t worry. It has to be that way on paper, but 99 out of 100 people will call me Ana Grey,” I reassure him.

“She’s right,” Grace pipes in. “At the hospital, I’ll always be Dr. Trevelyan, but everyone else calls me Grace Grey.” I feel him relax a bit.

“Well, far be it from me to argue with the good doctors. Mrs. Anastasia Rose Steele-Grey it is,” he says with a smile.

Dr. Anastasia Ro…” I begin.

“Don’t push your luck,” he interrupts me and I giggle.

*-*

I don’t know how long we stayed in the cabana, but we finally decided that it’s time to go back to the wedding. The bride and groom’s presence did not go unnoticed as the DJ announced our arrival when we returned. Maxie walked onto the stage and took the microphone out of his hand.

“May I have your attention please?” The reception goes silent and I know she is about to announce our engagement. I go stiff, but relax immediately when Christian pulls me into his arms as we face the stage.

“I do apologize for our sudden disappearance, but we were just celebrating some wonderful news.”

“You’re pregnant!” someone yelled from the crowd and there is a rash of laughter. Maxie laughs.

“No… not yet,” Maxie says with a nervous smile. “I would like to announce that my maid of honor, Dr. Anastasia Steele, and her beau, Mr. Christian Grey, have just become engaged!” All attention turns to me and Christian as the crowd cheers and applauds our good news. Maxie beckons us to the stage and of course, the moment we step up there, I hear whispers of “AnaChris.” God, I hate that name! There are chants to show the ring, so I raise my hand. It’s not like they can see it from there, but they cheer wildly anyway, being able to say that they were there when AnaChris became engaged. Maxie says something to the band and their first dance song starts to play again. I remember thinking how I wish that I were dancing to this song with Christian and not Quincy. Maxie smiles at me.

“The floor is yours, Steele,” she says.

Christian leads me to the dance floor and slips his arm around my waist. His left hand is holding mine. He brings it to his lips, kisses it tenderly, and rests our clenched hands on his chest. His eyes are filled with love and wonder and we begin to move to the beautiful melody…

It’s you and me and all of the people with nothing to do, nothing to lose
And it’s you and me and all of the people
And I don’t know why I can’t keep my eyes off of you

I can feel his heart beating. It’s strong and it’s speeding up.

“You own me,” he whispers, closing his eyes. He’s afraid. I can feel it. I touch his precious face.

“Look at me,” I breathe. He opens his eyes and looks into mine. I can’t find the words to tell him how wholly and completely I belong to him; how I have waited for this day—for him to ask me to be his wife; how I have breathed for the moment that we could announce that we were getting married; how much my very soul yearns to be with him forever, to build our lives and home together, to have a family; how death doesn’t seem scary if I am allowed to take my last breath in his arms. Oh, Christian, can’t you see it? I see life and love and happiness and my whole future when I look in your eyes. Can’t you see it in mine?

His body suddenly relaxes and his heart beat starts to slow. “Thank you,” he whispers, putting his forehead on mine. I’m fighting back the tears, but my chest is burning. I can’t hold them in any longer.

“I love you, Christian!” I sob, quietly, thrusting my hands into his hair and pulling him to me. Both of his arms slide around my waist and we are moving as one person. Our souls are tied together as one and we are inseparable right now. I vaguely hear Maxie’s voice saying something, but I can’t make it out. The music continues and I can see movement around us, but it’s distracting me from my man. I close my eyes and melt into his aura.

“Mine,” I breathe as I pull him closer to me, as if that’s possible.

“Yes… yours,” he whispers.

“Thank God!” I gasp as if I were holding my breath. He brings his hand up and cups my cheek, kissing me chastely. I take his hand and place it flat on my chest.

“Yours,” I breathe, looking into his eyes. He pauses for a moment and examines my face. Then his arm tightens around my waist while he wraps his other arm around me and moves his hand possessively up my back. I feel shivers as his hand presses against my bare skin and I gasp as his lips take mine, his hand moving to the nape of my hair, holding me hostage and claiming me right here on the dance floor. Oh, yes! I couldn’t give a damn about public displays of affection and what anyone thinks of us right now. I am so in love with this man, I can hardly think straight, and I need him to know it right now, to feel it and never forget it.

As always, we are breathless when we finally part lips and he is holding me so close to him that I can’t even move unless he does.

“Thank God,” he breathes, as he begins to move us to the music again.


GREY

I could barely wait to get Butterfly back to our room. Some of the roses from the cabana had been brought back to our suite and I made very good use of them. After bathing my baby in a bath filled with rose petals, I made love to her in a bed filled with yet more roses with the canopy stuffed with as many roses as could fit. We gave ourselves to each other for hours and hours, climaxing over and over while making slow, sweet love until our bodies and minds were completely exhausted. We needed to rid ourselves of the over-emotions of the day—of everything that didn’t involve us and this moment… the eye-fucking bridesmaids, the wishful groomsmen, the argument about the keys, the strippers, the ladies being thrown out of the Heirloom. We needed it to just be us, in our moment, washing away everything else that happened that day, that whole weekend.

Unfortunately, the weekend was not over. The couple has requested our presence at the bridal brunch before they take off on their honeymoon. My eyes open at about 10:30. Brunch is supposed to begin at noon. I look over at my Butterfly who is sleeping contentedly. Her hair is over her face and she looks like she could sleep for another half day. I hate to wake her, but then my slavish body responds to her beautiful skin and perky breasts. Dammit! I reach around her and caress her beautiful breasts. I didn’t think Greystone could even respond after all the sex last night, but there he is, at full attention. She moans softly and I move her hair to reveal her face. I bring my lips down to hers, kissing her gently. She moans again and turns her face to mine, returning my kiss without opening her eyes.

She gently threads her fingers in my hair and deepens the kiss. Before I know it, she has rolled over on top of me, kissing me passionately and possessively. Fuck, what she does to me! She moves her hand between us, positions my head at her opening, and slides down onto my erection. She groans loudly as I fill her.

“Oh! Christian…” she moans before taking my mouth again and grinding into me, rhythmically and skillfully pumping Greystone to imminent release. I rub her ass as her hips move feverishly over mine. This is going to be over very quickly if she doesn’t slow down.

“Baby… slow down… ugh!” Shit, I’m going to come. Here come the control techniques again.

“I can’t help it,” she breathes. “You feel so good…” Fuck, and so do you, Baby.

“Oh, shit!” I grunt as I fight the desire to squirt into her. Her hips are still moving with masterful precision, but I am determined not to lose this fight. The pleasure is almost unbearable, but pleasure nonetheless.

“Ah, Christian!” she exclaims as she throws that sexy-ass hair back and sits up on my dick. She’s bouncing on me now and I am losing this fight, but the macho won’t let me take down… not yet… not yet… too soon… She digs her nails into my chest as she is using her hands to support her weight.

“Aw, fuck!” I yell, and I almost shoot my load. In fact, I know for certain that I squirted a bit when she did that. It’s kind of painful to stop an orgasm once it starts, nearly impossible if not completely impossible for some men, but painful for those of us who can. “Baby, please…” I beseech her.

“Yes! Yes! Oh, yes!” she is bouncing frantically now, her voice high-pitched as she chases her orgasm. We lose the fight at the same time. The slightest hint of her muscles tightening and I couldn’t take it anymore. I sit up in bed and before I know it, I am kneeling, holding her up by her ass and slamming my hips against hers as I release riotously inside of her, the force so intense that I have to hold her down for fear that the fountain will shoot her somewhere across the Sound. She is suspended in my arms, her head back gasping for air as she trembles violently after wailing out her orgasm moments earlier.

“My God… Baby… what was that?” I managed to get out after the grunting.

“I don’t know,” she breathes, dropping her head on my shoulder. “You just… felt so good… I don’t know.”

“Well… whatever it was… it was fantastic!”

“I know,” she giggles, out of breath. “I didn’t think… we could do it again… after last night… but, damn!” I laugh at her exclamation and sit back on my feet, still inside her, still holding her, while we take time to catch our breath and enjoy the closeness. I push her hair back from her face again and begin to kiss her gently. I look in her eyes and my whole life makes sense, even the shitty stuff.

“Have I ever told you that you are the most beautiful girl in the world?” I ask her. She smiles sweetly.

“I don’t know if you have ever used those exact words, but you make me feel that way everyday of my life,” she says softly. I kiss her again and feel her muscles twitch around me. Mmmm. Greystone responds immediately and I rock my hips into her.

“We have a brunch we should be attending soon,” I caution her.

“I know,” she purrs, her voice thick with arousal as she presses her hips against me in response.

“One more time?” I nearly growl as desire rises in me again, making it nearly impossible to speak.

“One more time,” she whispers before she hungrily kisses me again, and we begin to move.

*-*

“Now, you are going to be asked and some idiots are going to try to guess, so here are the details of your ring,” I tell her as we are riding down the elevator, only a half-hour late for the brunch. “The band is James Allen. It’s a 0.30ct Channel Set. The stone is Cartier, of course, princess cut—I thought it would look better on your hand than the round one. The stone is 2.9 carats. I fought with going bigger, then I thought about a huge diamond on your perfect, dainty little hand and thought better of it. We can get a different ring if you like—bigger, different cut…”

“We will do no such thing, Christian Trevelyan Grey! This ring is exquisite, stunning, and you designed it. It means the world to me. I am curious though—why get the band from James Allen and the stone from Cartier?” she asks.

“Well, in my personal experience, no one’s diamond quality rivals that of Cartier. I’ve seen some very close, very beautiful seconds, but they are just that—seconds. So Cartier was a given for the stone. However, they couldn’t seem to give me what I wanted in a band. Their bands were timeless and beautiful—classic, even, but once you get a picture in your head of how a ring should look, then that’s how the ring should look. The James Allen band caught my eye and I couldn’t get it of my mind, so now it’s on your finger. Let me tell you, designing a ring for you was harder than I thought. I didn’t want your ring to outshine your personality and I didn’t want your personality to dwarf your ring.” She smiles at me as we exit the elevator on the first floor.

“Well, my love, I think you did a fantastic job. It’s perfect. It’s not what I pictured my engagement ring would look like.” I frown while she admires the ring, then adds, “It’s much, much better.” I sigh, relieved, and she tiptoes and kisses me on my lips. “Thank you for making me the happiest woman alive.”

“Thank you for making me the luckiest man who ever walked the earth,” I respond kissing her softly.

The brunch is going to be set up buffet style in the Bainbridge room, and I notice that we are not the only ones who didn’t make it on time.

“Where is everyone?” Butterfly asks the bride and groom who are canoodling at the center of the table.

“Oh, well, we knew after last night’s festivities that no one was going to get down here at noon,” Maxie began.

“So, we changed it to 1pm instead. We just didn’t tell anybody with hopes that they would make it by then if they thought it was still at noon,” Phil added. A young woman standing in the corner comes over and asks for our drink requests.

“Half cranberry juice, half soda water over crushed ice in a tall glass, with a mint leaf if you have it, please,” Butterfly says and the woman nods.

“You, Sir?” she asks politely.

“Just orange juice, please,” I reply. She nods and leaves.

“So, how does it feel, Maxie? Does it feel any different?” Butterfly asks.

“Actually, yes, it does,” Maxine says, smiling over at Phil. “I feel like a different person, like my life is really about to begin.”

“What about you, Philip? Does it feel any different for you?” I ask him. He laughs.

“Do you know that you’re the only person that calls me Philip? My parents don’t even call me Philip. Call me Phil, Man. I helped you pull off your engagement. I think we’re friends, now.” I drop my head and laugh.

“Duly noted, Phil,” I concede.

“You know, I’m still a little miffed at all of you,” Butterfly says. “My closest friends, my father… you were all in on this and I was completely clueless. I couldn’t for the life of me figure out why Christian would want to be involved in planning a wedding reception, much less why you,” she points at Maxine, “would let him take it away from me. The whole time you were planning this dramatic presentation and I had no clue. How long did it take you to get this stuff done?” I shrug.

“About a month, although I had the ring since Christmas.” Her eyes widen.

“Christmas? Christmas!? You’ve had the ring since Christmas and you made me wait this long?” she nearly shrieks. I laugh again.

“Settle down, Tiger,” I say. Maxine and Phil are snickering a bit. “You know as well as I do that the time has to be right. Besides, proposing on Christmas is so cliché!” Butterfly knows that I am anything but cliché. Her eyes narrow.

“Bastard!” she says pouting. I laugh and pull her into my arms.

“You still love me,” I tease.

“Yeah,” she says, mocking insolence, and I kiss her on the cheek.

“Tell me that we don’t have to sit according to the bridal party again. I want to sit next to my fiancée.” God, I like the way that sounds coming out of my mouth.

“No, you can sit wherever you like,” Maxine smiles. I gesture to the seats directly across from them and Butterfly nods.

As we take our seats, I ask Phil, “So, you never answered my question. Does it feel different for you, Phil?” Phil shrugs.

“Not really,” he begins. “I knew that I wanted to share my life with this woman almost from the moment I met her. I feel like destiny is just taking its course for me.” He brings Maxine’s hand to his lips and gently kisses her fingers. I put my arm around Butterfly’s seat. I know what you mean, Phil. I know what you mean. “So what about you, Man? Engaged!” he smiles at me.

“Yeah… there’s going to be a few people who are never going to believe this,” I tell him.

“Hell, I was there and I still don’t believe it.” I hear my brother’s big mouth coming into the room. “Where is everybody?”

“Shut up and sit down. We still have 20 minutes,” I tell him. He pulls a seat out for Valerie next to Butterfly and they quickly hug.

“Twenty minutes? I thought we were supposed to start at 12,” Valerie protests.

“Sorry we’re late!” Allen and James have just joined us as well. “Hey, what gives?”

“I was just about to tell Val that we were hoodwinked,” Butterfly says to a bemused Allen. “Brunch doesn’t start until one.” Allen twists his lips.

“Good one, Miss Lady. I would have never been on time any other way.” He walks around the table and he and James sit next to Maxine. One by one, or two by two in some cases, the rest of the bridal party flow into the room, hear the explanation and order drinks.

“So, Max, are you guys planning to have kids right away or are you going to wait?” One of the unnamed bridesmaids ask her.

“We’re planning on starting pretty soon,” she says. “We’re both really excited about having kids, so yes, definitely starting right away.” The bridesmaid turns to us.

“What about you guys?” she says. “Is it okay to ask? I mean, you did announce your engagement last night.” Poor girl. She’s probably thinking about how I tore into—what is that girl’s name anyway? Well, nonetheless…

“Well, allow me to clarify,” I begin for inquiring minds. “It’s not okay to ask those kinds of questions to people you don’t know before that kind of thing is announced. However, now that our engagement is common knowledge, yes—it is okay to ask.” I look to Butterfly to answer that question.

“We haven’t had a chance to talk about the details yet, but I’m sure we will be on the same page for the most part.” I notice she sounds a little nervous.

“Do you want kids?” I ask her. She looks over at me and nods. “I want kids, too.” She smiles.

“You do?” she beams.

“With you? Hell, yes!” I exclaim.

“Immediately?” she says.

“I wouldn’t mind, unless you want to wait.”

“I can’t believe we’re having this conversation in front of all of these people, but yes, I would love to start having kids as soon as possible!” She says, giddily. My heart leaps. She wants to have my kids! She really wants to have my kids.

“You want to have my babies?” I ask in wonder.

“Are you kidding? Of course, I want to have your babies, you idiot!” She giggles. I almost want to lift her from this table and swing her around like they do in the movies, bit instead…

“Excuse me,” I say to the others at the table. I snatch her from her chair, bend her over my lap and kiss her like there’s no tomorrow. The table erupts in applause and cat calls. She wants to have my babies—a fucked-up, broken, reclusive… well, not since I’ve met her. I’m none of those things since I met her. For once, I feel like everything is going to be okay… because of her… and our babies!

I bring her back up and sit her back in her chair like nothing happened. She is stunned, and she is so cute. She’s a little wobbly and I can see her shivering a bit. Valerie says something to her and all she can say is, “Huh?” Maybe this will help bring her back. I lean over, put one arm on the chair behind her and one hand on her far leg, and I begin to nibble her ear and tickle it with my tongue. She’s giggling profusely momentarily, but it helps to bring her back to the here and now.

“You okay now?” I tease.

“Yes, I’m okay now,” she giggles, swatting me away from her.

“Boy, you two are going to have a whole slew of kids,” Marilyn says.

“We’ll see,” we both say simultaneously, and start laughing again.

Brunch flowed along very smoothly with drinks, good food, and good conversation. Maxine is hoping to be pregnant when she returns from her honeymoon. She wasn’t kidding—they want to start having kids right away. Of course, all of this marrying and engaging gets people talking around the table. Valerie and Elliot reveal that they are very content in what they call their “fledgling” relationship, but that neither of them are against getting married sometime in the future. Gary and Marilyn are not even considering it right now and James and Allen have talked about it, but both admit that there is no rush. The random groomsmen and bridesmaids that I don’t know kind of brush over the topic and I discover that the only one that’s in a “committed” relationship is the one that put her foot in her mouth at the rehearsal dinner. Selena is her name. Butterfly makes a face and drops her head when that conversation is going on.

“Are you okay?” I ask her.

“Um-hmm,” she nods, and drinks more of her cranberry spritzer. She’s not telling something. I may have to torture it out of her later.

“Oh… shit.” I look up to see Allen scrolling through his phone. He looks right at me. Something is not good.

“What is it?” I ask him across the table.

“Did you announce your engagement last night?” he asks. I nod.

“I had McIntyre on standby with a statement once Butterfly said ‘yes.’ Why?”

“Well, it made the news. Unfortunately, something else did, too.” Oh, shit. I’m immediately thinking about the pictures from from She-Devil’s library. If those pictures have chosen this particular time to surface, Butterfly and I are moving to a private island—no questions asked.

“Excuse me,” Allen gestures to one of the wait staff. “Can that television get the any of the local news channels?” She turns on the television and does something to it. It goes to the news channel.

“Allen, what are we looking for?” I ask him.

“I’ll let you know if we see it,” he says scrolling through his phone. What the fuck? I don’t want this whole party of people to hear that this woman has pictures of me naked in compromising positions as a child.

“What’s going on, Christian?” Ana asks trying to be discreet.

“I don’t know,” I answer perturbed. “Does this have anything to do with that batty blonde bitch?” I ask Allen as quietly as I can.

“What? No,” he answers, distracted.

“Well, you better tell me something because I’m getting irritated and anxious and you know me well enough to know that you wouldn’t like either one!” I snap. Allen is clearly not intimidated by me. If anything, I’m annoying him with my impatience.

“Fine. It’s about Jewel,” he hisses.

“Me?” Butterfly says. “What about me?” Now the table falls quiet.

“Is this something we should talk about in private?” I ask Allen.

“It wouldn’t matter if we did,” he says, his eyes darting occasionally to the television. “If we watch long enough, it’s going to show up on the television. Ten will get you 20 that the paps are already outside. Jewel, where’s your phone?”

“Upstairs, in our room,” she says.

“If you had it, you’d know what we’re talking about by now,” he answers.

“Hell, I don’t know what we’re talking about!” Our conversation has dominated the table now.

“I have one word for you, Jewel… alert!” Butterfly looks momentarily at Allen completely bemused, then her facial expression changes like she is in pain. Her eyes close and her hand moves slowly up to her forehead.

“Ooooooooohhhh, HELL!” she shrieks. Now, I have gone from annoyed and irritated to afraid and concerned.

“Will somebody please tell me what’s going on!?” I nearly yell. Allen sighs heavily and points to the television.

“There it is… turn around you can see it for yourself. SOUND PLEASE!” he yells, and the news cast is playing through the small banquet room.

Our own royal couple and our version of “Bennifer” are actually tying the knot. Sources from the Grey camp say that Billionaire Bachelor Christian Grey and Seattle psychologist Anastasia Steele—affectionately known to us as “AnaChris”—have made it official. With the help of several of Steele’s closest friends, Grey surprised her at the Woodmark Hotel last night in Kirkland at the reception of her friend, Maxine Guest who was also in on it, and the night ended with a ring and a “yes.” I can just hear the hearts breaking all over Seattle as one of our most-coveted Bachelors is now off the market.

“He’s been off the market for months, you assholes,” Butterfly hisses without raising her head.

In related news…

“It’s not related, you fuckers!” she barks from under her hand. I know this is going to be bad.

…the Nevada attorney general’s office has issued warrants for the arrests of several people in the Anastasia Steele assault case. Here’s Miya Li in Las Vegas with more details.

Thank you, Sandra. What started out as a case of obstruction and witness tampering has opened the door to what looks like a massive cover-up involving this quiet suburb just outside of Las Vegas. This beautiful little mecca where children play in the street and neighbors walk their dogs looks like a wonderful place to raise a family. Yet, 11 years ago, this was the location of horrendous act against a 15-year-old girl which ended in murder.

Anastasia’s year book picture flashes on the screen.

Fifteen-year-old Anastasia Steele was walking home from school when she was allegedly abducted and brutally assaulted, leaving her in a coma for three weeks and resulting in the death of her unborn child.

The few members of the table that weren’t aware of Butterfly’s past are now gawking at her, wide-eyed and gaped mouth, and she never raises her head.

Investigator Herbert Larson indicates that an anonymous call tipped them off to the failure of one Mr. George Sullivan—previously a detective of the Henderson Police Department—to investigate the crime when it was committed. Sullivan has since been arrested and is awaiting trial on charges of obstruction, witness and evidence tampering, and possible accessory charges. This arrest led to an investigation of one of Green Valley’s most respected citizens, opening the door to possible corruption, embezzlement, and money laundering schemes all throughout the Valley.

In addition, a video of the attack was submitted to the AG office and Larson states that forensic analysis confirms that the video is authentic.

Butterfly’s friends erupt in celebration and applause, but Butterfly is not celebrating with them.

The attorney general in conjunction with federal, state, and local authorities have issued warrants on 15 people identified in the video and more will be forthcoming. Currently in custody are Carly Madison-Perry, Cody Whitmore, Vincent Sullivan, Kevin Van Dyke, Michael Underwood, and Rhonda Yick—all arrested on Friday evening with the exception of Madison-Perry, who was arrested on Saturday morning in California and extradited to Nevada. Authorities expect to have the rest of the first 15 suspects in custody by week’s end as some of them have traveled across state lines.

Each suspect is being charged with kidnapping, felonious assault, and murder. There is a question as to if the assault charges will stick. However, AG Herbert Larson is going for an egregious exception since the attack resulted in the death of an unborn child. Details are sketchy right now, but we’ll keep you posted as the story develops. Back to you, Sandra.

The sound dies and Butterfly’s shoulders are shaking with sobs. I put my arms around her.

“Ana… isn’t this good news?” Val asks, bemused. “Those bastards are finally getting arrested.”

“Why would they link those stories together? Why?” she wails, burying her face in her hands.


A/N:

So, for those of you who have been waiting, they have finally gotten engaged. However, any comments that say things like “It’s about time” or anything along those lines are going to be deleted. I did make it very clear that I was writing the story on my (and Christian’s) timeline and no one else’s. So on that note, I won’t take any snide comments about when I decided to let them get engaged. I am truly hoping that my beloved and faithful readers respect those wishes. 🙂

Cheshire Cat—Alice in Wonderland

“Oui, oui, oh mon dieu, OUI! De combien de façons veux-tu que je te dise oui?! Oui! Oui! Oui! Oui…” — Yes, yes, oh my God, yes…how many ways would you like me to say yes!? Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes!”

Since I don’t assume everyone knows it, “Bennifer” was one of America’s Supercouples. Ben Afleck and Jennifer Lopez held the throne from 2002-2004. After their break-up, they were replaced by “Tomkat” (Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes), who reigned from 2005-2012. The first branded Supercouple was fictional–Luke and Laura from General Hospital back in the 1980’s (although I surely think that Liz Taylor and Richard Burton should have held that title, but that’s probably before many of us were born–myself included). Today’s Supercouple is “Brangelina” (Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie). Although I am sure that people might say that there are others (Jay-Z and Beyonce, for example), they don’t have catchy little nicknames, yet.

Yes, I have a picture of the engagement ring, but I didn’t want to post it yet as I didn’t want any spoilers, although I knew that people already figured out that he was about to propose. I will post it later.

Pictures of places, cars, fashion, etc. can be found at http://www.pinterest.com/ladeeceo/mending-dr-steele/

You can join my mailing list on the “Contact Me” page. Just click the link and it will lead you to a form to join the list.

Feel free to review—it is greatly appreciated.

Love and Handcuffs!
Lynn x

140 thoughts on “Mending Dr. Steele: Chapter 24—The Most Beautiful Girl In The World

  1. Amanda says:

    Wow what an amazing chapter! I had a feeling he was going to propose to her during the reception and it was beautiful. I am so happy about their decision on kids. I think those two are going to be great at parenthood. Don’t worry about those trolls, your website is very easy to use. Hope your friend is doing OK. Until next week.

  2. Anna says:

    I am so happy, what a wonderful proposal! Loved it. I can’t wait for them to have kids;-) I’m so glad that they are on the same page on this matter. Can’t wait to see the ring;-) trolls piss off!!!
    xo Anna

  3. Yvonne says:

    Wow what a proposal best one I’ve ever heard so good had tears in my eyes reading it brilliant xx

  4. Jeannette says:

    I just loved it…we’ll worth the wait….you captured it perfectly. Now just waiting to see the posting of the ring.. Jn

  5. seralynsmom says:

    I feel for Ana! What should have been one of the greatest moments in her life has been overshadowed by the worst. I knew the moment they started talking and said the words “related” that she’d be upset. Val may not have understood at that moment but hopefully she does now! But if I know Christian (and you) he’ll make it right. He’ll help her through her upset. Now as for the thing she’s hiding…… The fact that that bitch Selena has cheated on her “commited” relationship!!! Grrrrr!!! And now she’s faced with the dilemma of speaking up or not. When I read the thing about the roses and stuff and then Val led her to the cabana and then her dad was there I knew what was coming!! To say I’m happy and excited is an understatement!! Can’t wait to see the ring!!!! 😀 and I am happy they’ve finally arrested most of those assholes (especially the three ring leaders Cody, Carly, and Vincent [since he held the first two brands])!!!! It’s a great day (even though she’s upset by them putting the two stories together)!!!

  6. hiddeninmysoul16 says:

    Totally Love This Story my comment from earlier still stands.
    Xxx Aby

  7. darla says:

    Wonderful chapter, loved the proposal.

  8. You could have warned me that I would need the Kleenex for that. Best proposal ever!!!!

    I feel a storm brewing inside the good doctor. The oxymoron of those two news stories would be difficult for anyone. The media can be so cruel sometimes. The worst part I think was that her own friend didn’t realise just how bad it was that those two stories were paired. They were both ‘good’ but not to be linked like that. Oh well!! I see a session with Ace in her immediate future.

    21 Gun Salute from your favourite officer, Sgt Fennell (I think that was my rank. Can’t remember. Gotta go re-read that part;) ). xox

  9. maranda says:

    That was absolutly beautiful. I couldn’t of expected more. And at just the perfect time. I am so in love with this story. Seven days can’t go by fast enough. I loved the roses I don’t think there’s a man alive that could beat the imagination of a woman when it comes to proposels. Can’t wait to see how he helps her through this dilemma with the arrest and hope she tells christian about the hoochie mommas wild trist. Crazy stupid girl. Thanks again goddesses much love to you.mr.

    • You got that right! Men can be very romantic, but seriously…when it comes to finding out what a woman wants, ask another woman (well, one that’s not trying to get in your pants anyway… she’s liable to tell you anything!)

  10. Pinky223 says:

    OMG OMG I mean OMG,Wonderful surprise didn’t see that coming 😱😄!!!Awesome as usually my Dear Lynn,I mean U made my day!! I Love Love Love it…More please,Can’t get enough,I’m addicted 😁😄👌👍
    Ps:I read on my IPhone,Never had a problem with your site before,But Hey no matter what u do,they will always find something to say,Can’t make everyone happy,can we ?! 😳

  11. The mean reviewer says:

    Thank you for the beautiful chapter! It answered many questions, and now we know it was Maxi’s suggestion. I was wondering when Al said it was not his idea. Maxi redeemed herself (in my eyes).
    I will pray for your friend too, but you will see she will overcome the pneumonia. She is in the best possible care in the ICU. I hope she is not resistant to the powerful modern antibiotics. Please, don’t worry and post whenever you are able to write and post, we all love you, and understand.
    To show my mean side now:
    How is it possible to have difficulties navigating your site!? And how are these readers not ashamed to admit that they are morons!
    I experimented by asking my grandmother ( yes, 84-years old) to find for me the last chapter of your story, and she discovered two different ways to do it just by clicking on the links on the left side. Without the obvious links (URLs) in your e-mails. I’m starting to think that people’s IQs are dropping because everything is designed for brainless, mindless existence…

    • I hate to say it, but I think you’re right about that IQ thing and I’m not trying to be funny. There are so many do-dads and gadgets and whatnot that do the thinking and the working for us that we just don’t have to do as much anymore. It reminds me of that movie Wall-E. I love that movie–it’s cute, but it had a frightening point. Everyone on the Axiom had stopped doing anything. They were plastered to their seats literally living a “virtual” life. I was wondering where the babies even came from because half of the passengers didn’t even know the ship had a pool let alone have time to meet someone and have babies! But if you push a button and everything gets done for you lately, how far are we off from that? I mean, think about it. I don’t know if you were around back then, but I had a reviewer on Fanfiction get angry at me because I knew about Greek and Roman mythology.

      :-O

      I learned that stuff in 8th grade! But my kids don’t know anything about it. The only Shakespeare they know is what I taught them… this is the world we’re living in.

  12. angalarte says:

    Omfg that was amazing, what a lovely surprise I never expected that at all, I loved the whole roses thing I was sobbing.

    I totally agree with you, the timing was perfect, although the timing of d announcement of d arrests wasnt!! But that’s real life 4 u!! And d paps!!!
    Luved luved this chapter I’m sorry that trolls keep bugging u.

    I hope ur friend is ok and I’m sending my thought & prayers 2 hee & u x x

  13. rjbriggs says:

    Bloody amazing as always loved every part of it loved how everybody was in on it can’t wait for next week

  14. veronica says:

    Love it!! And I think the ring is just perfect 🙂 I was a lil iffy of them hijacking the reception (thats just my personal feelings about that kinda thing). However in the end i realized its fitting for your story and was very romantic. As for the media they just plain suck at least justice is being served! Can’t wait to see what lays ahead! =D

  15. Lorraine says:

    OMG, i so wanted to cry (the proposal, so Christian, totally OTT), my partner proposed to me at my cousins wedding reception with a single rose (one was more than enough for me, thought he would never ask. lol), she couldn’t have been more thrilled, she thought it was great that her wedding prompted him to ask me.

    Sorry to hear your friend is so ill right now, my thoughts and best wishes go out to all friends and family. X

  16. valentinesgenie says:

    Two words Simply Beautiful…

  17. Teresa says:

    Lovely! Love the ring! And love that Christian designed himself!

  18. Any says:

    Loved it the proposal it was perfect

  19. JasmineDragon22 says:

    Cutest proposal ever!!! The fact that it was at the wedding and that all of her friends were in on it was awesome!!! Although I wish it would’ve ended on a happy note but the cliffhanger just has me itching for more so update soon!!! I’m bouncing with anticipation!!!

  20. VRB (Mariposa) says:

    Okay, so I apparently reviewed this chapter a litle in the previous chapter (trying to play catchup and read them all at the same time).. I wll say again awesome proposal… WOW… so special.

    Vanessa

  21. Donna Murray-Hill says:

    omg what a wonderful, romantic proposal i couldn’t stop crying, happy tears though, Mr Grey can be very romantic, can’t wait to read more your a very very good writer xxxx

  22. Theresa browne says:

    Omg loved it ,glad to have ur story ,thanks

  23. Danae says:

    I am not even sure how many times I have now read this chapter but its so gooood. The whole thing felt perfect from start to finish.
    A week always feels too long to wait to get to the next chapter of the story but with your story it is always worth the wait every single time.👏👏👏
    Totally excellent.

  24. Christian618 says:

    No I am not going to make the expected comment of finally but I will comment on how they got engaged. I am more than shocked I am speechless is more like it that they got engaged during this wedding reception. Either Maxine and Phil love butterfly so much that it did not bother them that this engagement stole some of their thunder on this glorious day. I know Christian would never allowed for something like this on his wedding day but now that they are engaged let me sAy that it’s was very creative and a beautiful way for him to propose. Hell if Maxine and Phil are okay with this then I say let’s celebrate their engagement. I do agree with butterfly their engagement as beautiful and loving as their engagement is should not be tied or connected to that horrible incident in green Valley. The news media can be such ugly green eye monsters at times or they just don’t have a clue. As always bronze Goddess you and your story rocks!!!

  25. DottiG says:

    From the off I thought this was a great way to propose. Now on this day there can be two celebrations of love. Both couple and all of their friends will always mark this as such a special day. And as it was not smack dab in the middle of her reception location but away with only specific guests invited it did in no way take away from Maxie and Phil’s day. That was great and so was Maxie’s reply.

  26. GoddessofMyOwnWorld says:

    People call Jay-Z and Beyoncé Bay-Z although I think it is a stupid name. Great chapter once again. So happy for Ana and Christian. The press are so cruel smtimes.

  27. Julie says:

    So glad their finally engaged!

  28. Taylor says:

    Hey Lynn! I haven’t commented in a while and its not because I haven’t been reading, because I never miss a Saturday! Real life has gotten the better of me, boo! Anyway I have been waiting for this special momeny because you waited so long, it means so much more. Weve been through their relationship and struggle with them every step of the way. Its so much more real, they aren’t perfect, but they have come to need each other and I feel like we all actually know why. I loved the proposal, LOVED the details and as always appreciate the visuals via pinterest. Youre the best. I can’t wait for your posts or for your releases! You’re only getting better! Prayers for you, Taylore.

  29. Ginger says:

    Finally caught up on your story. BEAUTIFUL!
    The proposal was wonderful – so much love from everyone involved; very touching. I hurt for her that the Green Valley story was “related”. I have faith that in the end she will be a better person for it.
    Baby Greys!! Can’t wait.

  30. nedbella says:

    OMG! Gloriously heartwarming. THAT proposal bought me to tears. Here I was sitting at the table with blurry vision from the constant tears running down my face, trying to read, whole getting looked at weirdly by my family. LOL. Oh Bronzie, you did it again. And the media doing both those stories together shows just how callous they can be. Seriously did they not even think that announcing the green valley news wouldn’t scar the happiness of her engagement announcement. Nobody wants to have such a horrendous event discussed with your engagement being announced. Poor Ana….and Christian. I mean, the green valley incident didn’t happen to him, but it’s his engagement too, so he will be upset as well, and rightly so. That aside. I absolutely loved the chapter. And you are spot on with the timing of the engagement. Any earlier in the story would have been too soon. Hugs.

  31. ljb2 says:

    Question: Remember when Al commented that he knew where/when Steele wanted to be proposed to? Was that this scenario?

  32. Blondegirl3 says:

    That rocked! Although I agree with Ana why do the awful paps have to link the two stories together! It gives journalism a bad name doesn’t it! Great job!

  33. Nik says:

    I always knew that they would get engaged and I must say it was well worth the wait. I’m so happy for them. This is one of my favorite chapters. I hope Ana isn’t too sad abt the news broadcast, she knew it would happen but probably not when it did just as she had something beautiful to celebrate. I’m glad justice is about to be served. I love the way CG planned the proposal

  34. jjgoldmann says:

    What a beautiful way for Christian to propose.

  35. Jeangb says:

    What a beautiful romantic proposal, sigh.

  36. Chanty says:

    The proposal was really beautiful and so romantic. When Ana began to receive so much roses I understood that Christian was under all of this. But at first when Quincy gave Ana a rose, I was like her: wondering how Christian would feel about it. I was half expecting a fight! LOL!
    Now those paparazzi are just like hell, the devil and the plague all together. Poor Ana, they spoiled her day.

  37. Sharrier says:

    That’s a lot of roses. To me I see the arrests as Ana’s past finally buried and the engagement is definitely her future but I an understand how she’s feeling.

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