Grey, Continued: Season 5 Episode 4

So, this is what my weekend looked like.

I’ve always known that if you’re staying in someone else’s house, you must live by their rules. If you break one of their rules—even if you don’t know you broke it—they can fuck up your whole world.

I had to work yesterday, but I’ve been working on Season 5 as I move along. I’ve been having a “Mommy” weekend (as in “I miss my Mommy”), and writing has been helping me through it. Imagine my horror when I woke up Saturday and discovered…

MY PINTEREST PAGE HAS BEEN SUSPENDED!

Thousands of pins, albums that I’ve worked on for FIVE YEARS that I can’t even access. Why? Because I was in “somebody else’s house,” and I supposedly broke the rules. They said I was spamming. How the hell do you spam on Pinterest??? I post something, you look at it… or you don’t. I don’t send anything out!

They sent me a nasty email saying that they don’t like it when people try to “game their system.” What the fuck? I write Fanfiction. I post pictures to my Fanfiction. How the fuck am I gaming your system?

Nonetheless, I realize that I was in Pinterest’s house, and they felt like I broke one of their little rules somewhere, and now they have locked me out, took away my key, and are holding my shit.

So, I went trolling Google and Pinterest (with a new ID) to see if I can at least get some of my content back, and I discover that I have a HUGE presence on Google and it’s time to put some money behind my name (more to come on that).

Luckily, I woke up this morning and got an email that basically said, “Oops, we’re sorry. We made a boo-boo…” Fuckers!

I’m in the process of trying to find another forum for my pictures.

All the same disclaimers apply.

Season 5 Episode 4

CHRISTIAN

Stress can have a huge impact on your life. It doesn’t matter how you try to manage it—one way or another, it has an impact on you.

Your family…
Your job…
Your goals…
Your peace…
Your relationship… D/s or vanilla.

I confided in Artemis that the clusterfucks going on with the company have impacted me more than I want to admit. Although I’m not looking to divert back to the old Master ways, grab some brown-haired waif, and beat the hell out of her, I have thought more than once about the relief I felt after one of my intense sessions with a well-trained submissive who could take a hit. I realize like sharing that information with my wife and soumise, in hindsight, was probably a bad idea. True, we should be able to discuss anything, or at least that’s how I feel, but right or wrong, some things are better left unsaid.

Artemis and the other Domini at the Munch informed me that I first need to understand and accept the massive amount of stress that my company’s condition is placing on me and my relationship; then, I need to fix it. Forget simply having my way with my soumise—I’ll fuck around and lose my wife and family if I don’t get a grip. The underlying relationship must be solid before the extras can be added or practiced. Otherwise, the D/s portion of our relationship will only be a means of escape from whatever issues we’re facing, and once the whips and butt plugs are stored away, all the same problems will still be staring back at us.

I had no idea that going to BDSM mentoring would involve a good, healthy dosage of relationship therapy. Butterfly and I basically didn’t talk to one another for nearly a week until Christmas and by that time, she was having a Yuletide-theme nervous breakdown and I was completely clueless until a holly jolly Christmasland exploded all over my goddamned house!

Communication.

Every meeting we’ve had so far, they’re banging into our heads the importance of communication.

I understand how important this is, but if they keep banging it into my head, I’m going to resent the concept. And I’m 99% sure that Artemis thinks I’m doing the “yeah, yeah, sure, sure, I get it” nod when he starts talking about it, especially since I may have verbalized my after-the-fact reticence about mentioning my nostalgic mind-wanderings in front of Butterfly.

“Even if it’s something painful, you have to be honest with your feelings, Christian,” he had said. “Now, that doesn’t mean that you must be hurtful. Being hurtful is just plain mean and vicious. Sharing something painful means that it may not be pleasant, but it still has to be shared. Do you understand?”

I understand alright, but if he only knew how much I try to avoid negative confrontations in this household—in this relationship!

“Your avoidance is only making it worse,” he warns. “It only means that what you feel is going to build up until you can’t hold on to it anymore, at which time, it’s going to come out at the most inopportune time in the most unfortunate manner.”

I personally think that’s what happened anyway, but I try to see the validity in what he’s saying. I’ve never been much of a communicator… ever. That’s why I’ve always had a fucking shrink, although I can’t remember the last time I’ve been to see mine, and Butterfly has effectively fired hers. Nonetheless, I think this whole Downtime thing will be helpful to our communication. It’ll help me not only be more receptive, but also be able to share more since we’ll be in our D/s roles.  

The D/s relationship is a team. You may think you already know that, especially since every relationship should involve teamwork, but the D/s dynamic is even more so because you can’t fake it. You can fake wanting to be with someone for a while so that you can bide your time until you can get out. Or you pretend to love someone or want to be with them until you get what you want. Not so with BDSM. You’re all in or you’re not. I’m sure there’s someone out there who could probably fake it, but I’ve never seen it. You must be invested in something like this—in it for the long haul or you’re just playing house.

There are a few times when I really felt like my wife and I were a team—when she put the Pedophile in her place at my parents’ house that first month we were together; when she let Natalia know that she had absolutely no power over us no matter what she thinks she accomplished by masturbating at the table in the club last year; and Monday in my office.

My wife effectively took a huge bite—and rightfully so—out of the asses of my executive team right after she steamrolled over my management team. I felt like I needed eyes in the back of my head, trying to monitor everything that everyone was doing and I’m losing my fucking mind trying to do it myself. The Butterfly Sword swung through that room slicing asses and taking names. I don’t think I’ve ever seen those people scramble out of that room that fast after I had a meeting with them.

However, the piece de resistance was when she unapologetically read Ros and Lorenz the riot act. I fucking loved it. Once again, she took one look at the situation with fresh eyes and immediately knew what the problem was. She had seen everything I saw in the departments and must have deduced that these fuckers knew I had my hands full with every department that there was no way for me to keep my eyes on them all.

And what did she do?

She did the exact opposite of what I did. I’m trying to overhaul the departments to get the bullshit out and make them become more productive. She read emails—emails—and discovered the most important projects that needed to be completed in each department. Now, she’s making them prove to her that they’re getting them done.

Today, she’s wearing a tan suit that’s every bit of 1930’s Katharine Hepburn minus the penny loafer shoes and including my wife’s signature platform stilettos.

Ana's Suit

The meetings began almost immediately with her first three being today. I watched from the eye in the sky just like I did for her department meeting, not because I was spying on her and thought she would fuck up, but because I personally wanted to watch her kick ass.

I sat and watched her rip procurement a new asshole. I knew it was coming because Yi was her first example in the meeting, having back-talked her about the sign-in sheet. How this doctor with a medical degree and license knows this much about directing purchasing and buyers, evaluating and negotiating with suppliers, and selecting and managing vendor contracts, I’ll never know. Yet in a manner of just a few minutes, she pinpointed direct flaws in the process, suggesting solutions for some and expecting Yi to report back to her with answers for the rest. That poor woman was left standing there holding those papers in awe.

Along the same lines, she visited Theodore Mosele, the one who made the toddler comment. I almost felt sorry for him. He’s the head of the Supply Chain, which includes category management, Yi’s department—procurement, shipping and receiving, and the warehouse. This idiot made an elementary mistake. He handed my wife some never-ending stack of papers with a cocky smile and the words, “This is what I’m responsible for. This is what I do.” I knew without even being able to see these documents that he was handing her bullshit.

Butterfly looked at the enormous stack of papers without taking it and looked back around to Marilyn. Without words, Marilyn handed her an iPad. She scrolls through the iPad for a moment and begins to speak to Mosele without raising her head.

“Mr. Mosele, you’re head of the supply chain.” It’s a statement, not a question. “That means that you should be intimately aware of the fiascoes that I found in procurement a moment ago.” She hands the iPad back to Marilyn without looking back at her and instead, raising her gaze to Mosele, who has now lost that smug look he had on his face.

“Please show me in that useless stack of printer paper that you’re trying to shove at me exactly what your plan is to correlate with Ms. Yi on the issues that I found in her department. Show me what you do.

Her last words were clipped and cold, leaving Mosele scrambling and excusing that he’s not certain what she discussed with Ms. Yi.

“So, let’s try this again,” she says, her voice cool. “The correspondence I’ve seen from Mr. Grey to your department directly referenced wanting to see strategies to improve productivity, quality, and efficiency in the supply chain, especially considering that shipping screw-up last year that nearly cost one of our long-standing clients. That’s also what I asked you for. So, Mr. Mosele, show me in that gibberish that you’re handing me where the directives are that I asked for.”

Mosele shifts from one foot to the other and flips through the several-hundred-page document, trying to find something to show my wife. Just like me, she knew it was garbage the moment he handed it to her.

“That’s what I thought,” she says, and he raises what looks like an accusing glare at her. She doesn’t back down for a moment.

“I have several departments to visit, Mr. Mosele, and I don’t have time for your games or your showcasing. You have one hour to get me what I asked for or you’ll find yourself on indefinite and unpaid administrative leave for insubordination and failure to follow instructions, and we’ll see if the next person can get me the information that I asked for!” She looks at her watch. “Your hour starts now.”

She turns around and marches out of the department, and Mosele stands there glaring at her departing figure until she’s gone, at which time, he angrily slams the documents on the floor that are in his hand.

That’s what you get, asshole.

I can barely pay attention to what department she visits next because I’m eager to see what’s going to happen when she gets back to Mosele. I halfheartedly watched her talk to heads of Marketing and of Business Logic, two meetings that went much smoother than the two that she had before, then after an hour and ten minutes, she heads back to Supply Chain with two more members of security in tow.

“I trust that you have what I asked for,” she says. Mosele’s 1000-page book of gobbledygook has now been reduced to what looks like a five-page synopsis of the exact fucking information that I asked him for two weeks ago. Butterfly has him explain his logic on several of the directives before she hands the papers to Marilyn, who places them in a portfolio that she’s carrying.

“Thank you for the information, Mr. Mosele. I knew you could do it. Take the rest of the day off. In fact, take the rest of the week off. I’ll let you know on Friday if we’ll expect you back on Monday.” She turns to leave.

“I did what you asked!” he snaps.

“No!” she says, whirling around to face him. “You didn’t! I gave you instructions and you cockily gave me some 500-page Yellow Pages bullshit thinking I wouldn’t know what I was looking at. What was that, a shipping manifest? Last month’s inventory? The Employee Code of Conduct?

“Do you think I’m stupid, Mr. Mosele, or were you just deliberately trying to piss me off? I really hope it was the latter because you have effectively succeeded at that! Maybe next time you’ll think twice about trifling with me.

“Yes, I’m a ball-buster when I need to be, and I’m proud of it. And, now, yours are cracked and on the floor. Pick ‘em up and get the fuck out of my building. Ben?”

She glares for a few moments at Mosele then turns around and walks out of the department, leaving him standing there staring at Ben and another of my security staff.

That show was fucking better than Netflix.

That afternoon, I had a meeting with Ros and Lorenz about the KPI report that was delivered to me.

“We have four major segments failing half of their critical KPI’s and nobody thought that this was something that we should investigate?” I inquire. So far, no one has any answers for me. “I have an entire quality assurance department whose sole purpose is to sniff out problems and set metrics to find solutions and what do I discover? They’re one of the departments that has the fucked up KPI’s. Who’s watching the company if the watchers are fucking up? You know what that’s the equivalent of? A dirty cop—someone who’s supposed to be keeping the peace and not doing his fucking job.” I drop the files on my desk and walk to the window, disgusted.

“I want stats and metrics on the department heads and the managers of that department to the auditing team in the next 24 hours. Give them the guidelines and tell them I want an analysis of the data by the end of the week. Let the powers that be know that they’re going to be coming before me to tell me why they should keep their jobs.”

“Are you sure you want to do this?” Ros asks. “We could be jumping from the frying pan into the fire.” I turn to her.

“Have you missed something?” I ask. “We’re already in the fire. This company is dying a slow death, and nobody can see it but me? I’m putting the IV’s in the veins and putting the defibrillators on the pulses and you guys are looking at me like, ‘What the fuck is he doing?’” I turn back to Ros.

“Tell me, Ros. Do you remember when we found the hacker?” She raises her brow.

“I do,” she says.

“Right before that happened, what would have been the takeaway if I had found out that quality assurance was sub-par? What would you have told me if we had discovered that while someone was running through our systems, moving money and wreaking havoc, quality assurance wasn’t making the mark? Be. Honest.” She blinks a few times and sighs.

“I would have said somebody would have needed to be reprimanded or fired,” she replies honestly. I nod.

“Now, imagine in that lovely condo that you own across the street from my penthouse that you have rats running around chewing your wiring, eating your food and leaving their rat shit turds all over the place for company to see. Also, in the midst of all this, you’ve got an exterminator on-call that comes out every week to eliminate this problem. You’re paying him handsomely and you still have the problem with the rats. Are you going to ponder whether or not this fucker is doing his job?” I stand there with my hands open in a shrugging motion, waiting for an answer.

“No,” she says, “I’m not.”

“Are you going to keep paying him while the rats are nibbling at your charger cords and your Lindor chocolates?” I ask folding my arms. She looks down at her tablet.

“I’ll get right on it,” she says, swiping the screen and tapping on it.

Later that night, I tried to talk to Butterfly about her day:

“How was your day?” I had asked last night when I got home.

“You know exactly how my day was,” she retorted. “I don’t know how you know, but I know that you know.” I twisted my lips and smirked.

“True,” I replied. “I don’t know if I should feel a little professional jealousy over the fact that I asked that fucker Mosele for answers two weeks ago and you were able to get them in an hour.” She raised her brow at me.

“Actually, it took me two days,” she said, her tone betraying what her words weren’t saying…

How the fuck did he know that?

“Nonetheless, it still wasn’t two weeks,” I countered. She gazed at me for a moment.

“Do I have to worry about you going behind me undoing everything that I’m doing?” she asked frankly. I was a bit taken aback.

“Why would you think that?” I asked surprised,

“Because I know that it’s safe to assume that no one is reporting every single thing I do in GEH back to you because I’ve already made it clear that that would piss me off. So, the only other explanation is that you must be watching me somehow. I really don’t care—it is your company. I just want to know if I have to worry about you going back and undoing everything that I’m doing.” I scoffed.

“First of all, it’s our company,” I corrected her. “And second, you’ve made it perfectly clear to all observers that you don’t need my help or permission to get shit done. The very last thing you need is for me to walk behind you gumming up the works.” She nodded.

“That’s good to hear,” she said, “because I guarantee you that the head banging has only just begun.”

Of course, she was right.

Did you see this?” Butterfly asks, marching into my office on Wednesday afternoon. She’s spent more time at GEH than she has at Helping Hands this week. As she’s marching into my office with her tablet in hand, I already know what she’s about to throw at me.

“The email from Ros?” I ask calmly.

“So, you’ve seen it,” she says, a statement not a question. She drops some files on my desk and reads from her iPad. “It’s becoming increasingly unclear as to whom I should be reporting as of late. I have directives that need to be rectified. To whom should I be directing my responses?” She reads the email with disdain. “To us both, you smarmy ass bitch!” she hisses. I suck in a breath between my pursed lips.

“I see that she has rubbed you the very wrong way,” I say, removing my glasses and looking at my wife.

“She’s testing me, Christian,” she threatens. “I don’t know how far my reach is with her, but she’s trying to see how far she can go with me, and I’m telling you, she’s going to fail.”

“Your reach goes as far as mine does, baby,” I tell her. “I only ask that before you decide to terminate one of our executive team that you discuss it with me first.”

“I’m hoping it doesn’t come to that,” Butterfly retorts, pacing the room. “She’s valuable to the company and I’m very well aware of that, but she’s aware of it, too, and she’s really smelling her own ass right now.”

“Yes, I know this. I can see it, too,” I say calmly. “What would you like for me to do about it?”

“You just did it,” she says, stopping in front of the same window where I stand to get my thoughts together. “You told me how far my reach goes, and you gave me a guideline. That’s what I needed.” She folds her arms but doesn’t turn around.

“She likes being the only woman on campus that can command a room full of men in her pencil skirt. I’m the new girl on the block who showed up with a whole bunch of power and she can’t stand it when the truth of the matter is that had she wielded the power she should have wielded in the first place I wouldn’t be here.” She turns around to face me.

“Exactly where do you see in my schedule that I have time to come to GEH and perform a job that I’ve never been trained to do? That I didn’t even ask for? We’re getting to a point with this business and our marriage where most women would be giving you an ultimatum—this business or me; where a lesser woman would be out looking for extracurricular activities to soothe the ache of what might be missing in the relationship because you’re GEH 20 hours out of 24 of every single day including weekends! But did I do that?

“No!

“I rearranged my entire fucking life and came in here and got my hands dirty! I did some basic research on what you were trying to get from each department and I came in here and rattled a couple of cages, asking these idiots why they needed repeated commands to do their goddamn jobs and yes, I asked Ros and Finney exactly what the hell they were supposed to be doing, too. I wanted to know if they were working as hard as you are, as stressed as you are right now trying to run this company; if their spouses are on a plane, train, or automobile on their way down here to find out what the fuck is going on in this place.

“She wants the power, but she acts like she doesn’t want the responsibility that comes with it, and now she’s getting all haughty because I’m being forced to come down here and exercise them both because she won’t do her fucking job? Are you serious?

“I’ve got another job and two children that require my time and energy and I’m not here because you can’t do this on your own. I’m here because you shouldn’t have to!”

Her eyes are glaring a glass blue, almost gray, and any idiot can see that she means business. When I’m able to break the trance of her eyes glaring back at me, I gaze past her and see Ros and Lorenz standing at Andrea’s desk looking into my office. I wonder how much of the conversation they’ve heard. My wife follows my gaze and turns around. Upon seeing Ros in the doorway, she fully turns to face her, pops her neck, and folds her arms. She’s preparing for battle. Ros straightens her back and marches into the room.

“We have the talks for Northwest in twenty,” she says crisply, keeping her eyes on me without acknowledging Butterfly. Dear God, why is she so intent on fanning that flame? Butterfly glares at her for a moment, then turns and retrieves the files and her tablet from my desk, shaking her head the entire time.

“Stay,” I say, hoping she’ll take part in the discussion.

“Can’t. Meetings,” she says, her voice clipped before turning to glare at Ros. “Otherwise…” She walks purposefully out of my office, Marilyn standing from her perch near Andrea’s desk and falling in place behind her as the click of her angry stilettos warns subordinates of her approach. I shake my head.

“If you think poking this angry bear is bad, keep poking that one and see what happens,” I warn her, organizing some things on my desk. Ros’s mouth gapes.

“Didn’t you hear what she just said about me?” Ros says. “I’m supposed to come in here all smiles and open arms while she’s talking about me behind my back?”

“Was she wrong?” I ask, pointedly, raising only my gaze to Ros and she looks like I just slapped her. “And make no mistake, Ros, anything that she’s says when you’re not here, she’ll say when you’re present…” and I’m pretty sure that she did the last time she spoke to you, “and it’s not because she’s the boss’s wife or half owner of this company. It’s because that’s who she is. She doesn’t mince words and she never has. When I first tried to put her in her place nearly three years ago, she mercilessly let me have it with both barrels even after she found out who I was.

“I’m not telling you to kiss her ass—she’d see right through you, but whatever issues you have with her presence, you need to work them out. Not only is that woman your boss, but she has identified a weak link in the infrastructure and she’s trying to compensate for it, and she’s right… she shouldn’t have to. Her personal assistant is sitting in with her on these department head meetings when one of you should actually be there, observing and supporting her as well as gathering valuable information needed to run this company. I’m going to have to get her an office, because like it or not, she’s part of the executive team now.

“You’re a valuable asset to this company, Ros, but I advise you not to put yourself in a position where you’re pitted against my wife. I’m sorry to tell you that you will lose, not only because she’s a formidable opponent and more resourceful than you think, not only because she’s half-owner of this company, but also because she’s my wife. Do you understand that?” She straightens her back and clasps her portfolio with both hands.

“Yes, sir,” she says dutifully.

“Ros? That’s not a ‘yes, sir, no, sir’ question and I’m not looking for capitulation. If you continue to cross her, that woman will flatten you with a steamroller and not look back. She’s got a lot more to lose here than you think. If worse comes to worse and this company folds, you’re out of a job, and you have to find another one. Where does that leave me? Or her?

“My life’s work is destroyed; my children’s legacy gone… Yeah, they’ll have plenty of money, but eventually, money runs out unless you find some kind of way to make more of it. That’s what I’m trying to do for my children. I’m trying to have something to pass down to them so that they can have something to pass down to their children. And when shit goes wrong in this place, I take that shit home where it ends up getting dumped in her lap one way or the other.

“She didn’t come in here waving her little handkerchief and saying, ‘Look everybody, I’m the boss!’ She came in here with hard facts, looking for answers, calling everyone to task. Why? Because I did come home and dump that shit in her lap and she, as half owner of this company, wanted to know what the fuck was going on. She has that right! She has the right to confront you about anything that’s happening in this company; she has the right to ask you questions and get answers; and she is entitled to respect from you as your boss even if you have to bite your tongue until it bleeds and choke on your own blood to give it to her!”

It appears that some of that blood I was just talking about has left Ros’ face and is sliding down her throat as we… I speak.

“I’m not going to be the one that you have to contend with,” I warn. “If you fuck up with her, then you have to deal with her and she. Can. Fire. You. The moment that you feel that she is out of line, off the mark in some way, or behaving unprofessionally, then we can sit down and have an executive meeting where we can discuss that behavior and you can present your evidence. But at the moment, it just looks like you’re miffed because apparently, something in this mix isn’t going the way that you feel it should. I knew it when you took that cock-and-bull vacation, and it’s still evident now.

“State your fucking grievances or shove them up your ass because none of us have time or patience for this sidestepping, round-and-round, high-handed-one-minute-then-pretend-acquiescence-bullshit you’ve got going on here. We’ve got a company to run and we’re trying to patch the cracks before they become full-on fissures and fault lines. We are a team—all of us! What you need to decide is if you’re on this team with us, and if not, I will take your resignation whenever you’re ready, that is, if she doesn’t get sick of your crap and hand you your walking papers first.

“Whatever issues you have, you better solve them quickly, because we won’t have this conversation again,” I say, my voice cool. “This is your final warning and you can interpret it however you want. Do you really understand what I’m saying to you?” I speak with no malice, but she needs to understand what a precarious position she’s in right now. She sighs heavily. Her shoulders fall and she’s less defensive.

“Yes, sir,” she cedes, “I understand.” I sigh heavily and look at my watch.

“Northwest in ten,” I say, stacking some files on my desk and putting some items inside my portfolio. “I’ll meet you down there.”

“Yes, sir,” she says, crisply before turning and walking out of my office. I sigh again, counting to myself as I get my notes ready for the meeting. I don’t know what’s going on with her, but she has to get that shit together and get it in gear because my wick is running short with her crap and Butterfly’s wick is even shorter. I’m quickly coming to grips with the fact that Butterfly just may give her some unpaid time off, assuming Ros doesn’t leave first.

I’m just realizing that Lorenz is still in the office.

“Is there something you need, Lorenz?” I ask.

“Not an enviable position to be in, sir,” he says, “stuck between a member of your executive team and your wife.”

“Correction,” I say, raising my eyes to him, “two members of my executive team, one of whom happens to be my wife. And owner, wife, or otherwise, if she was walking around here behaving the way that Ros is, with what I can only characterize as unfounded jealousy, I’d be checking her on it, too.”

“Are you sure that’s what it is, Christian?” he asks.

“Aren’t you?” I say, fixing my gaze on him. I already know the answer to that question because I remember his parting words to Ros when they left my office after that meeting on Monday. “Whatever this is or whatever brought it on, I have no idea, but it’s been brewing for a while. I had seen the ways that she did—or didn’t—address my wife before, but she confirmed for me that something was wrong when she asked me if legal was getting audited with my wife standing right there looking at her and wasn’t afraid to tell me why she asked.

“She knows damn well that legal is tight as a fucking drum and didn’t need to be audited. She didn’t ask about security, where the head of my personal security lives in my house with his entire family, breaks bread at my table, was best man at my wedding, and I walked his bride down the aisle and gave her away. No, she asked about legal. And even if Allen wasn’t my wife’s best friend and godfather to my children, I know from experience that he could still run circles around any legal mind this side of the continental divide and probably beyond. That’s why I hired him.

“She had a point to prove and proved it, and all parties involved heard it loud and clear. She’s testing the waters, and if she doesn’t stop, she’ll be boiled alive.” I pause and take a deep breath. I need to count, but I don’t have time.

“Lorenz,” I begin, “I gave that woman half of my company, not only because she’s my wife and I love her, but because I trust her. I trust her to take care of my home, my children, and my life. And if something happens to me, I trust her to take care of my company. I trust her to know that if she can’t handle the reins, that she’ll put them in the hands of someone who can.

“Take a good look at her. She’s not running around here playing house. She’s kicking ass and taking names and she’s getting things done, and right now, there are people in this building who’ll follow her orders before they’ll follow yours or Ros’ and that says a lot.

“Man to man, that’s a powerful pussy between those legs, but right now, that’s not what I’m looking at. I’m looking at the fact that within a matter of days, she’s pinpointed weak spots that I’ve been pointing out to you and Ros since last year. In that short period of time, she came in here and she’s having executive meetings that you and Ros haven’t initiated or conducted since you’ve been working here unless you did so directly under my instruction.

“What does that say to me about my executive team? And now, every time Ros gets a chance, she wants to get yet another bug up her butt because someone wants to call her on her bullshit? How long do you think that’s going to fly? How long do you think I’m really going to sit here and watch her play King of the Hill with my company? How long do you think my wife is going to sit here and watch that?

“You once told me that if you thought I was about to shoot myself in the foot that you would be remiss not to tell me. She’s not hearing me and she’s certainly not hearing my wife, so maybe she’ll hear it from you. You better tell her that she’s got the gun aimed at her own toes, and quite possibly, her fucking skull.”

Lorenz has fallen silent, pursing his lips before they form a flat line.

“Let’s get going,” I say. “We’re late for Northwest. 

*-*

I watch my wife sleeping peacefully in the bed next to me. She was still on fire when she got home from GEH today. She’s getting a small taste of how I was feeling last year when I was dealing with all this shit on my own. She now sees for herself that it’s not so easy to come home and turn off the heat when you’ve been dealing with it all. Her presence this week has had several profound results and revealed some important facts.

She showed up to GEH and she became me—only worse, because she added the flavor of a woman scorned—and these people quake when they see her coming.

Her being there this week and taking the reins on several of the departments, taking small but hard bites out of my workload has made things a whole lot easier on me. I was able to come home and flog, then pamper, love, suck, and fuck that body until she was able to let go of all things GEH. However…

She’s going to burn out real fast at the rate that she’s going. No doubt, Artemis and Savvina’s talk about us being a team made her walk into that place and rip the walls down. Now, she’s trying to make sure that they’re rebuilt correctly, and she can’t do that by herself. She’s going to fry and have a nervous breakdown, especially with the Green Valley trials coming up in a few weeks.

I’ve been rattling cages, but now, the big ones need a shake or three.

I’ve made Ros and Lorenz cancel anything they had on the books and meet with me first thing Thursday morning. I’m sitting behind my desk when they enter and dutifully take the two seats in front of me.

“The gloves are coming off,” I begin. “I’ve had enough of this shit. Things are going to change today, as of this moment, in fact. Lorenz, I recognize the hard work that you put in while it was just the two of us over the last two weeks, but for the most part, I still had to lead the horse to water, and that’s unacceptable. If you two need me to tell you what to do, I’ll do that. I’ll treat you just like I treat my management team. I’ll hand you a list of directives and a date by which I expect them to be fulfilled. You’ll go through semi-annual evaluations just like everyone else does. Oh, and since you won’t be performing all the duties of the initial jobs that I hired you for, this will effectively be a demotion and you’ll take a significant cut in pay.”

That gets their attention.

“You see, my wife just walked in here and showed me that anyone with determination, common sense, and a solid grasp of business, armed with a little authority and the information that I’ve been sending you guys from the very beginning can come in here and whip these fuckers into shape and get the job done. My wife is right—if I have to do this on my own, I might as well have a board.”

They share a knowing glance.

“And she’s right about another thing,” I say, rising to my feet and looking down at them. “I see everything that goes on in my office…” I turn my gaze to Ros. “Everything!” I glare at her for a moment to let that sink in. That ‘I-know-something-you-don’t-know’ glance that you two keep sharing with each other like a private joke in my presence, I share that glance with Jason at least five times per day, maybe more. I know what it means.

“She told you that’s sending a message to me and you didn’t listen, so you better fucking hear it from me. I know the two of you have conversations outside of my presence, I expect that. However, if you keep up that silent-conversation-eyeball shit, I’m going to start feeling the need to reach behind me and find out if there are any knives in my back. And if you make me feel that way, I sure don’t fucking need you around me.”

They appear to grow in front of me, straightening their backs like two students called to the principal’s office. Good. Now, back to the purpose of this meeting.

“You two are highly educated in management and thoroughly experienced. There’s absolutely no reason whatsoever why you couldn’t do exactly what she did, and yet you…” I turn to Ros, “are resentful that she came in here and did what you should have done a long time ago. And you’re right, Ros. Maybe every department does need to be audited, including my executive team.”

Her eyes grow large and for the first time, I see some really serious concern.

For the next twenty minutes or so, I hand them printouts of the same emails that Butterfly read that resulted in the fresh-faced overhaul that GEH has seen over the past three days. This is what I was doing all throughout the second half of December, but I was doing it on my own. She just picked up where I left off and cleaned up the dust. I was assuming that my executive team would get the hint and help out, but they never did. The fact that my wife had to come in from the outside and clean up is pissing me off. The fact that Ros is acting like a little bitch in the process when she should have been doing this in the first place is burning me the fuck up.

“My wife is the assistant director of a very important charity that has a lot of projects on the hopper and does a lot for the community. She has two small children to raise. I pay you two a fucking fortune and she should not have to come in here and do your jobs! You want to do mediocre work, go do it at somebody else’s company. I don’t want to lose either of you, but if you’re not pulling your weight like I need you to, then I’m not losing anything, am I?”

My anger and frustration suddenly come to a head, realizing how dedicated my wife is to this company—more dedicated than the fuckers that work here. I have one of my wife’s three-second funnels and give them my final conclusion:

“Get your heads out of your ass, get on my fucking team, or get the fuck out!”

I stand over them, leaning on my desk with my hands flat, glaring at them and waiting for their decision. I’ve had enough of this shit, and when I say that it stops now, it fucking stops now.

“You’re right, sir,” Lorenz says.

Right about what? About you getting on my fucking team or about you getting the fuck out? I wait for him to finish. He looks over at Ros.

“We’ve gotten complacent. We’ve been sitting here waiting for direct marching orders on a whole lot of things. You and I both got our feathers ruffled when our pet mergers got axed to make room for the audits.”

Ros twists her lips, but says nothing.

“Although I haven’t been as… confrontational with Dr. Grey, I’m just as guilty as you are when it comes to not picking up the ball and running with it when we needed to,” he says to Ros.

“Don’t you mean ‘dropping the ball?’” Ros says, her voice tame.

“No, I don’t,” Lorenz says, firmly. “When did we ever have the ball?”

“I thought we had it at least once throughout this process,” she contends, her voice still defeated. Lorenz laughs.

“Ros, if you had that ball at all, you threw it over the fence and into the next yard when you took that impromptu vacation and deserted GEH during one of its most critical times last year.” Ros raises a shocked gaze at Lorenz.

“Yeah,” he continues, “I may not have said anything because I’m not your boss, but that was a bullshit ass move and you know it!”

He nearly growls the last words. I had no idea he was this angry about her taking vacation time when she did. He never shared that with me. I’m unsuccessful at hiding my shock because I can see Ros look at me in my peripheral vision, then look back at Finney because I have nothing for her. I glance over at her, and at this moment, you could catch flies in her mouth.

“How can you say anything about having the ball when you walked off the damn field?” he accuses. “I may not have been running plays like I should have. I may have even been sitting on the bench, which is no better, but at least I was at the goddamn game!” He turns to me.

“I’ll never be you,” he says. “I’ll never command the respect from or wield the authority with the staff that you do, but he’s right,” he says, turning back to Ros. “It’s time to get the fuck in the game. No offense to Dr. Grey, but a psychiatrist has no business coming in here showing us up when this is what we’re supposed to be doing every day. You’ve been giving nothing but a whole lotta lip and a healthy dose of a bad attitude. If you keep it up, you’re on your way out, and I don’t intend to go with you. I like my job, and I want to keep it. So, there’s my decision, sir,” he says, turning back to me. “I’m part of the team.” I purse my lips and nod.

“I’m glad to hear it,” I say. He stands.

“You hired me for a reason. I’m sorry that I haven’t fulfilled that purpose to the best of my ability. With all due respect, sir, I’ve got a lot of catching up to do… some emails and reports to read, probably talk to some departments. If there’s nothing else, I’d really like to get started.”

His demeanor and entire stance have changed. Ros is officially on this plank all by herself. I nod at him, dismissing him and he walks out of the office, closing the door behind him. Ros still sits in the chair, her head bowed.

Well?

“I’m… Gwen and I are separated,” she blurts out. What?

“Huh?” I say, stunned.

“My wife,” she says. “My wife left me. We’re separated.”

This kind of knocks the wind out of me. Ros and Gwen could have been the poster couple for same-sex marriage, and now she’s telling me that they’re getting a divorce?

“Why?” I ask. “How long?”

“On and off since about June,” she admits. “On all the time since just before Thanksgiving.” I frown.

“What happened?” I’m waiting for the whole we just grew apart speech. Nothing could have prepared me for what I hear.

“I met someone.”

What. The. Fuck. I’m suddenly angry as if this was my relationship going south.

“What the fuck do you mean you met someone?” I bark. “You met someone a decade ago when you met Gwen…”

“I know, I know,” she laments. “Gwen was supposed to be my future, my happily ever after, but then I met Monique, and everything changed.”

 I’m not buying it. This is really pissing me off. How can she just dismiss the sanctity of marriage like this?

“I know it’s fucked up, Christian, but the heart wants what the heart wants.”

“That’s such a crock of bull,” I accuse. “When you’re single, you jump around from person to person because that’s what you do. You taste the flavors to see what you like the best. When you’re married, you make a commitment. Sure, it’s okay to appreciate beauty, but you do not engage. You’ve promised yourself to this woman and you’re out there playing the field?”

“I’m not playing the field!” Ros retorts. “I didn’t go looking for this. I didn’t plan it! It just happened. If anybody should understand a thunderbolt hitting you out of nowhere, you should.”

Oh, the fuck you are going to use my meeting the love of my life to excuse your infidelity.

“Oh, I see,” I say, coolly. “So, me being a single, unattached man meeting, falling in love with, and marrying the woman who became my life and would eventually bear my children is comparable to you cheating on a woman that you’ve been dating or married to for the last ten years in what way? A pretty, hot piece of ass walks past you, causing you to want to throw away everything you’ve built with Gwen, and this is comparable to my situation with my wife exactly how?”

I’m thoroughly offended, and I’m anxious to know how she’s going to talk her way out of this shit.

“That’s not what I meant!” she retorts sharply. Oh? Enlighten me then. I’m eager to hear your thoughts on this.

“I’m just saying,” she says, “that this is out of my control. I’m feeling things with Monique that I’ve never felt with Gwen—ever. Gwen was safe, and I knew that I wouldn’t get hurt, but Monique… she touches my soul, Christian. And it’s not just sex, it’s everything.”

“So, you’re willing to throw away everything that you have with Gwen, your plans, your life, your love, her heart—to go chasing after this other woman that you’ve only known for six months?”

Ros clears her throat and diverts her gaze to the floor and it only takes a few moments for me to realize the truth.

“Oh, God,” I say. “It’s been longer than that, hasn’t it?” Ros sighs and shifts uncomfortably.

“I met Monique… three years ago.” Three years! Three fucking years, you’ve been stringing Gwen along and wasting her fucking time?

“I haven’t been dating her for three years… I’ve known her for three years,” Ros corrects. I just shake my head.

“And how long have you been dating?” I ask accusingly.

“Not the whole time, but nearly the whole time,” she confesses. I quickly do the math.

“Just so that I’m clear, you married Gwen in March… 2011, no, 2012, right?”

She nods. She knows I’m doing the math.

“Were you seeing the woman before you married Gwen?” I ask. She clears her throat, but doesn’t answer. No answer is still an answer, Rosalind!

“For God’s sake, why?” I nearly screech.

“Because I loved Gwen,” she says with conviction. “I still do, with all my heart…”

“Not all of it!” I shoot back. “Believe it or not, I totally understand trying to figure out where your heart belongs, but why the fuck couldn’t you do this before you said, ‘I do?’ Does Gwen know this? Does she know that you were torn between two lovers on your wedding day?”

Ros does something that I’ve never seen her do before, she chokes back a sob.

“I thought being married would make things right,” she says, her voice heavy with tears. “I loved Gwen… love Gwen, and I thought that committing myself to her was the right thing to do. I thought this silly fancy with this other woman would go away once I gave myself to the woman that I wanted to be with… only it didn’t. I threw myself headfirst into my marriage with Gwen, trying to make it work, trying to build forever, but Monique was always there! I couldn’t shake her, even though I wasn’t seeing her.

“We messed around a couple of times before I married Gwen,” she confesses. “We even hooked up the night before my wedding… the last hurrah, we said, but it wasn’t. I could never get her off my mind. I didn’t contact her for months, but there wasn’t a day that passed that I didn’t think about her at least once, not a day.

“On the one-year anniversary of my marriage to Gwen, I saw her again. I should have avoided her, but I didn’t. I couldn’t. We greeted each other like we were old friends, agreed to meet for drinks. That’s when it all started again, and that’s when I realized that I was going through the motions with Gwen for months; that as much as I loved her, I couldn’t shake Monique and I never would.

“I tried to have my cake and eat it, too. It worked for about three months, but Gwen knew something was up. She knew I wasn’t all there. She played my little game, tried to fix it… tried to do what she could to hold us together, but right before Thanksgiving, she’d had enough. She packed up her things and moved back to Snoqualmie with her parents. 

“When it looked like you were going to be dumping a bunch of crazy shit in our laps, I took that moment to flee. I couldn’t handle what was going on in my marriage, what looked like erratic behavior from you, and what I perceived as an unnecessarily high-handed attitude from Mrs. Grey. Maybe I made the whole thing up in my head, but I was under a lot of stress at the time. It was too much shit flying at me at once.

“I took the impromptu vacation to regroup, and to go see Gwen. I needed to know what she wanted to do, because I owed it to her not to leave us both hanging in limbo.” I shake my head.

“You went to ask her for a divorce,” I say, “right at Christmas.” She shakes her head.

“That wasn’t my intention,” she counters. “If Gwen had told me that she wanted our marriage—that she wanted to work things out and she just needed a little time, I would have given her that time, and I would have tried to work things out. But like I said, whether you believe me or not, the heart wants what it wants. When she asked me about Monique—if I could give her up—I couldn’t hide it. She saw it in my face. She asked me for a divorce right there and then, three days before Christmas.” She wipes a tear from her cheek.

“I came back to Seattle, spent time with Monique. I told her what was going on. She comforted me, reaffirmed her feelings for me. She admitted that she couldn’t promise marriage, and I wouldn’t want her to. I wouldn’t want to put that responsibility on her.” She begins to sob again.

“I made a horrible mistake, Christian,” she weeps, “but my mistake was not Monique. It was Gwen. Yes, I loved and wanted her, but she wasn’t the one. I married her because she had seniority, because I had made promises, because I felt like it was the right thing to do—but I was wrong. I made a mistake, and I dragged that poor woman through all this drama, and I ripped her heart out because of my screwed-up sense of obligation. It was Monique!” she wails. “It was Monique all along, and I married Gwen! I was wrong! God help me, I was wrong!”

She buries her face in her hands and sobs bitterly. I’m an asshole, but I’m not a fucking asshole. I can’t sit here and watch a woman sob no matter how much of a bitch she’s been over the past few months.

I get up and retrieve the box of tissues from my en suite and walk over to the front of my desk. I hand her the box and she takes a wad of the tissues in her hand, burying her face and crying again.

Jesus Christ, she’s losing it.

“I can’t help you with this one, Ros,” I admit. “I don’t know what to say. Even as a single man with different bed partners, it was always one-on-one. It was a strict rule of mine. When I had my pick of two women, I didn’t sleep with either of them until I made my choice. My choice didn’t even want me, but I guess I can understand someone being in your mind and your blood and you can’t get them out. My choice was Ana, unequivocally, and that’s who it’s been ever since.

“You broke a vow to your wife and that’s really fucked up, but you need to consider something else. This woman—Monique—she has no respect for the sanctity of a commitment. What makes you think that if you leave your wife to be with her that she’s going to respect the sanctity of yours?”

That only makes her cry harder and I’m afraid that she’s going to have a coronary or something.

“Alcoholism is a disease,” I begin. Ros raises a confused, tearful gaze to me.  It’s an analogy, Ros, stay with me. “It destroys the body and it eventually leads to things that can kill you like cirrhosis of the liver. It’s something that the drinker brings on themselves, but it affects everyone around them, nonetheless. Your executive team needs to know about this. It’s affecting your productivity and your ability to make decisions. The fallout from your personal life is making your professional performance look pretty fucking shitty. Tell them whatever details you want, or omit whatever details you choose to omit, but they need to know what the fuck is going on with your life.”

Like an angel from God, my wife opens the door and walks into my office. Her expression was at first confrontational, but immediately morphs into bemusement. I quickly mouth, “Help me!” gesturing to Ros while sporting a wide-eyed confused look of my own. My wife mouths, “Did you fire her?” and I quickly shake my head.

She comes into the office and closes the door behind her. She immediately walks over to the bar and fills a glass with water from the mini-fridge, bringing it back over to us. She crouches down in front of Ros and puts her hand on Ros’ shoulder.

“Here,” she says, softly. “Drink this.”

Ros raises bloodshot, tear-filled eyes to Butterfly, then takes the water and drinks a healthy amount of it.

“What’s wrong, Ros?” Butterfly asks, and Ros breaks down again.

“I’m sorry,” she sobs, “I was shitty to you for no good reason and I’m sorry.” Butterfly looks over her shoulder at me as if waiting for an explanation. I shrug and gesture back to Ros. If she’s going to share this with you, she’s got to give it to you.

“Ros, that’s hardly a reason for you to be all broken up like this…” my wife begins.

“No… no…” she chokes out. “It’s not that. I just wanted you… to know how… sorry I am… It was rude… and unprofessional… and I was being a bitch… and I’m sorry…”

“Okay, okay, it’s fine,” Butterfly says, trying to calm her. “I accept your apology if you swear not to let it happen again.” She shakes her head.

“It won’t… it won’t…” she promises. Butterfly nods.

“Okay, now tell me what’s really wrong.” Oh, boy, here comes the floodgates again.

“I’m a terrible person,” she weeps. “I took a beautiful, kind woman and carelessly ripped her to shreds…”

This is my cue to leave Ros to speak to Butterfly. I think she’ll have to turn on the shrink.

“I’m going down to the gym,” I tell Andrea. “Contact me down there if they need me.”

A/N: So, yes, something was going on with Ros. What do you think about her dilemma? I’m of two minds, but I’ll wait to see the verdicts.

Did you guys see the two homages I paid directly to Fifty Shades? Let me know if you find them. If not, I’ll reveal what they are. 😉 

Pictures of places, cars, fashion, etc., can be found at https://www.pinterest.com/ladeeceo/grey-continued-misadventuresseason-v/ … that is, until they decide to fuck with me again!

The new question and answer thread is always open for questions about the story. be sure to read it and please adhere to the rules when asking questions. You can find it on the left, second from last on the menu or you can click HERE.

There has been yet another development where if you feel the need to talk to fellow readers about personal issues, you need a sounding board, or you want to vent about something in your life, please feel free to visit the link on the left in the menu entitled “Do You Need To Talk.” No subject is taboo. I just ask that you approach the link with respect for those who have concerns as well as those who respond.  You can also get to the link by clicking HERE

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.

~~love and handcuffs

 

79 thoughts on “Grey, Continued: Season 5 Episode 4

  1. Sue says:

    OMG I’ll be damned. Ros is a damn cheater and has been even before her marriage. Poor Gwen. What the hell do I do with this knowledge now? I have no idea how to regard Ros now. And the fact that she allowed her messy personal life to fuck up her professional life is worse yet. She made a hell of her own and has been unleashing it on everybody else for some time. For the life of me I can not understand how she fooled herself and Gwen and everybody else around them so thoroughly? Do I even have the right to think/ask if she even can be trusted after doing this? It seems she kinds of have an issue with honesty. Can this be compared with trusting her in the business? I don’t know anymore. Ros totally threw me foor a loop with how long this whole thing has been going on. Wow just wow. I loved the part where the employee’s kinda scatter when they hear Ana’s stiletto’s klicking and coming closer.
    Chapter was great and full of information to digest.

  2. Tina says:

    Now that’s wonderful this story gets better with every new link. Keep them coming please because I love reading this story.

  3. Darcy says:

    Loved this, awesome chapter!

  4. falalalynx says:

    Oh boy Goddess, lol you’ve done it again, threw me for a loop. You give me my favorite couple being a dynamic duo and then you go and gobsmack me with Ros. lol

    Ros, oh man this is an awful pickle you have gotten yourself in. Mistake mistake mistake! And you are going to lose either way and lose big. So sad so bad you must be mad. And this make Gwen collateral damage. Having been Gwen I am having difficulty garnering any sympathy for you. I can’t even think of any advice to give you and I’m resisting venting my spleen on you.

    Wow just wow. I think I need to think about this some more.

    Goddess my dearling I am so glad Pinterest got everything straightened out. Right? It is fixed right? Sometimes things go wrong but the fact that they came back and owned the error is a plus on there side They should get one mistake I think.

    I am just so happy to see you again. xoxoxoxo

    I have a question; which is the kiss and which is the hug in XOXOXO?

    Peace, Falala

  5. Teri says:

    IMHO..Ros needs a clean slate. No Gwen (which breaks my heart) and definitely no Monique (heroin is not good for you.) I love the story, and the chapter. Good luck with Pinterest. Sounds to me like they noticed the large numbers of viewers you have and decided to freeze you out until they did their due diligence in checking you out.

    • Well, then you know what they should have done? They should have said, “Hey, we’ve noticed some suspicious activity on your account. Please give us a moment to check it out. Your account will be suspended for 48 hours while we investigate,” which is how long my account was suspended.

      No, they accused me of spam — which I still don’t know how the hell you “spam” somebody on a PICTURE SHARING BOARD, but this was their verbatim description of the accusation:

      “Spam includes saving lots of unwanted or repetitive stuff, trying to game our systems, or posting fraudulent, deceptive or unsolicited commercial messages. We block spam like this because it creates a bad experience for other people on Pinterest.”

      And had I not appealed it, they wouldn’t have reactivated my account. So, I don’t buy that. However, if that was what they were trying to do, then congratulations to them because I’m actively looking for another forum.

  6. Sweet Peach_75 says:

    I KNEW it was something super personal going on with Ros. Her guilt over what she did to Gwen was eating her alive and causing her to be a complete bitch to Ana. Poor Gwen. Christian was so right about Monique….she does not respect the sanctity of marriage. Ros was the “one who got away” Monique probably felt like she had something to prove by getting Ros to stray. Ros needs to be by her dayum self for a while. She does not need Gwen or Monique.

    Great chapter.

    • falalalynx says:

      Hey Sweet Peach,
      giggle I think, oh ho here we go Falala thinking, I think Ros does not ‘deserve’ Gwen and doesn’t ‘need’ this Monique. I’m right with Christian and his opinion on Monique. But Ros is the adulteress. She is the married one. Who knows about Monique. Who goes and be’s with someone else on there anniversary? Oh yeah that’s right my ex. hmmm

  7. Connie Gould says:

    Love it I can’t believe Ros cheated on. Gwen my heart breaks for Gwen I hope Ros gets her Shit together I believe she has lost the best thing that ever happen to her as always BG you rock

  8. Bonitapplebumm says:

    Awesome chapter per usual, I was wondering what was up with last week’s post. I’m glad u got the Pinterest back up im always looking at your pins and that red dress from the previous chapter 💥☄️🔥🔥🔥
    I’m going to give this homage a try 1. Ros lives across the street from CG’s penthouse and 2. One of CG’s rules/hard limits was monogamy one sexual partner at a time.

  9. seralynsmom says:

    I was too busy being delighted by this to see the homages. Lmao.

    Ok. So. Ros. I’m of two minds. She’s right, the heart wants what it wants. And unfortunately, sometimes people fall out of love. Is it fair for them to Duke it out if they’re miserable? Christian is so damn black and white sometimes, he’s lucky to have found everything he wants in Ana and that Ana has found all she wants in him and that it’s unlikely he’ll ever experience that moment when the love just isn’t there anymore. On the other hand, what she did to Gwen is fucked up. He’s right, she should have taken the time and truly contemplated what she wanted, especially since she fucked that chick the night before her wedding. As for Monique, Christian is right to make her think about that woman when it comes to respecting the sanctity of anything but at the same time, it only takes one thing to make someone change and he is the prime example. I feel for Ros, but I also say she reaped what she sowed. But now they know what’s been going on, hopefully she’ll get on board now.

    Thank fuck Lorenz got his head out of his ass too. Because Christian was right, Ana would burn the hell out going the rate of speed she was going. I still think she needs to stay on board for a little bit, but with Ros and Lorenz at her side so that they can make a seamless transition when she steps back and they step up. If you know what I mean.

    But yes! Everyone is on the same page now and we can get to gettin’ on Green Valley. Lol. I also see that Christian and Ana seem to be strengthening their relationship. These Munches seem to be exactly what they’ve needed.

    I had to take literally everything remotely against Pinterest’s rules off mine because I got a warning that if they had to remove one more pin they’d suspend me. Anything that had any type of nudity or partial nudity, the kinky stuff, etc. I also had to make certain boards private in a hopes that it would keep my shit from getting reported. I was pissed because the majority of what I pin is already on Pinterest. They suck. Most of the shit they were bitching about, was tasteful too because I’m not about to post a pin with some dude’s dick inside a pussy ffs. 🙄🙄

    • falalalynx says:

      Hey now Ash, don’t go shading Christian because he believes in monogamy. I resemble that remark. grin If you take vows and enter into a contract with someone then shouldn’t that someone expect you to live up to your vows? And shouldn’t you do your upmost to fulfill them and expect them to do the same? And I know I can be a Pollyanna about some things but I don’t think this is one of them. If you like to mess around why get married in the first place? Peace, Falala

      • seralynsmom says:

        I’m not saying what Ros did isn’t wrong, it absolutely was. She should never have gone through with the wedding. She took the easy way out and now she has to face the consequences. But I come from a divorced home. My parents split when I was four. For the longest I blamed my mom, thought it was all her fault. If she’d just worked at it harder, yada yada yada.

        But now I’m an adult in a marriage myself. I can see that, my parents were NOT compatible. Is it fair of me to continue to wish they’d worked out their differences so that *i* could have a two parent home? Is it fair for me to want them to be miserable?

        Work on it, try to see if you can salvage what you have, but don’t sacrifice yourself and YOUR happiness if there is nothing there that can be fixed. If it came down to the sanctity of my vows and my sanity, my happiness… sorry, I’m not going to play the martyr. I love my husband, I don’t see myself ever wanting to be with anyone else, but if something fundamental went wrong in our marriage and we tried to save it but we couldn’t, then I’d let him go. There is only so far anyone should allow themselves to go before they have to say, enough is enough. You should never allow something to push you until you break. And Christian needs to understand that.

        What if Carrick couldn’t handle Grace during her pre menopause phase? What if he tried and tired and tried until he was just tired of trying? Would it be fair to expect him to stay in a marriage that made him miserable, that stole his joy?

        Ros is in the wrong here, absolutely. But some things are just not black and white, and Christian needs to see that. Hell, his last name is Grey, he’s fifty shades of fucked up, but he can’t see all the different colors??

      • falalalynx says:

        Sweet Ash,
        Let me take another run at this. Christian and I both believe in monogamy. So we don’t understand why Ros would marry Gwen when she was already being unfaithful. And then continue to besmirch what imo should be a scared union. Unfortunately things don’t always work out and people do get divorced. I believe in divorce as well but what I’m taking exception to is getting married in the first place when you have no intention of even trying to live up to your vows. Ros has set this epic tragedy in motion and Gwen the innocent party is getting the brunt of it. It wasn’t your take on Ros that I objected to it was your comment that Christian was only seeing black and white. Some things are black and white.
        You don’t drink and drive.
        You don’t let kids play with fire.
        You don’t kick animals.
        You don’t get married when you are already fucking around.
        Black white black white black white grey grey grey Oh hell Fiddy shades of grey! Yikes grin Love you Ash. Peace, Falala

      • seralynsmom says:

        Bear with me a moment. The conversation starts with Ros telling him that she a Gwen have separated. Then he asks how long and she tells him. The. They get to the why. And she only says “I met someone” and Christian goes straight to “how dare she” without any context. At this point, we have NO idea if she actually cheated or not. Meeting someone and actually climbing into their bed are two totally different things. He has no idea if she and Gwen had been having problems up to this point and that’s what led to the separation and then while separated, Ros met someone new. He doesn’t know. So he’s gone straight to that black and white mentality that he has, without knowing the whole of it. For all he knows, for all we knew at that point, her marriage was already over before she met the new person, that she and Gwen had been trying to fix their marriage through all that on and off time and that the complete break off was the end of things, they just hadn’t made it official yet, and that Ros “met someone” in the interim. That is why I said, not everything can be black and white all the time. If this had been the truth of things, it isn’t fair of Christian to think that Ros should fight for a marriage that’s already ended.

        It isn’t until AFTER he thinks that, that we learn just what happened. Now that we do, yeah, we can be angry at Ros for defiling the sanctity of her marriage. I took umbrage with the fact that Christian jumped to conclusions before he got the whole of it. That was my issue and why I say he needs to learn to see in more than black and white because not everything is black and white.

        No, Ros should not have gotten married, which is why she’s a terrible person and I feel bad for Gwen. But we didn’t know this at the point Christian raises his hackles over the sanctity of her marriage. My dad met my stepmom while he and my mom were still legally married. I don’t consider it cheating however. Why? Because my mom and I lived in Pennsylvania while my dad was still in Indiana. Their marriage was over, all that was left was to sign the paperwork. For all we knew, when Christian is thinking about the sanctity of her marriage, that’s what was going on with Ros and Gwen. That they were done, all but the paperwork, when she met Monique.

      • falalalynx says:

        Hey Ash, lol
        I hope my battery last here. Last run. giggle
        Right at the point where Ros says she met someone Christian knows she is still married to Gwen so the monogamy loving soul still see’s it as black or white or black or white. I doesn’t matter the why. She’s still stepping out on Gwen. She has separated from her wife because she met someone. grin And then after he knows the how and why it still reads wrong to him/me. As in she is wrong, made a huge mistake, fucked up. I still maintain his black/white pov is correct for him/me. lol Oh boy I hope you follow me. I was having trouble following me. grin I’m defending Christian’s right to see it my way. lol
        It’s always a delight to debate with you my dear. grin

      • seralynsmom says:

        I’m not saying he doesn’t have the right to see it that way. I’m saying that he needs to learn that it doesn’t always work that way. As she says, the heart wants what it wants. Sometimes it doesn’t see the wrong, when there’s a want involved. I get why he sees in black and white, but sometimes he has to stop and take and step back and realize that not everyone is like him. Like I said, I took umbrage with him jumping to an automatic conclusion without all the facts. Perhaps it’s because I’ve seen both sides of the equation, so I can look at it from a different angle? This is just one of those, agree to disagree moments. The world isn’t black and white and sometimes Christian needs to take a pause and consider things before he jumps straight into that mentality. Once we learned exactly when Ros met Monique and what she did to Gwen, then all bets were off and Ros is in the wrong and that turns it black and white and he ends up being right. But it wasn’t until after he made assumptions that he learns this.

      • falalalynx says:

        Respectfully Ash,

        The heart wants what the heart wants is a lame ass excuse in this case because the ‘heart’ knew ‘before’ the marriage. So why marry Gwen when you knew it was going to destroy her life later? Now here’s a hug because you are so fun to talk to. Peace, Falala

      • @seralynsmom I’m not taking anybody’s side. I’m just reading. I want to clarify something, though.

        You said, “The conversation starts with Ros telling him that she a Gwen have separated. Then he asks how long and she tells him. The. They get to the why. And she only says ‘I met someone’ and Christian goes straight to ‘how dare she’ without any context.”

        He has every reason in the world to believe she’s being unfaithful even without additional information. Why? Because he asked, “Why are you separated?” and she answered, “because I met someone.” Her answer was black and white, not his conclusion. A ten-year relationship is over because “I met someone.” The details are irrelevant. They don’t matter. If she and Monique had a long-distance relationship where they never touched each other, it still wouldn’t matter. Question—answer: Why—I met someone. Her marriage is over because she met someone.

        When you say, “Christian goes straight to ‘how dare she’ without any context…” no, he didn’t.

        Number one, he was upset, yes, but he asked her, “What the fuck do you mean…?” He never accused her of cheating; He asked, “What the fuck do you mean,” and she elaborated.

        Number two, I said that Ros’ answer was black and white, not Christian’s conclusions. I say that because when he asked her that, she did not say, “Gwen and I have been having problems.” She did not say, “Gwen and I are growing apart.” She did not say, “I’m unhappy in my marriage.” Those are all gray answers.

        “Why is your marriage over?”
        “Because I met somebody else.”
        That’s black and white. It doesn’t matter when or how it happened.

        He asked her, “Why? How long? What happened?” She answered, “I met someone.” That is black and white, hon. The gray comes after we get the details and we have to put everything together—did she cheat, how long was she cheating, where did she cheat, when did Gwen know—but this part… Why—I met someone… is black white.

  10. Camille Henley says:

    Goddess thanks for an amazing update! I’m so happy that Ana and Christian are working as a team @GEH. Loving how their communications has improved. Ana asking Christian if he would go behind her back and undo everything that she has done shows growth in their marriage. They’re stronger than ever. However, Ana wants her happy Christian home at a decent hour so that they can enjoy their family. Especially their babies.
    I really thought that Ros was sick/ill. I knew for her to take that unplanned vacations something was totally off and so OOC for Ros. Not sure how I’m feeling about her and Gwen right now… I do feel that it was very wrong to go through with the wedding knowing that she was in love with someone else. I wanted to re-read Ros and Gwen wedding if anyone remember where I could find it….

    • falalalynx says:

      Hey Camille,
      I could be wrong but I thought Ros and Gwen were already married from the start of this story so there is no wedding to read about.
      I love how Christian and Ana work together as well. I firmly believe there is nothing they can’t accomplish when they work toward the same goal.
      Peace, Falala

    • Their wedding was actually before my story started. They got married in 2011. My story begins in 2012.

  11. Camille Henley says:

    Goddess Congratulation on your Promotion! You were very luck that it was simply an error and your pinterest has been restored. I love going on your pin/page sometimes to just imagine where and what I could be going and what I could be wearing.

  12. KJ says:

    My boss left his wife for a colleague after nearly 20 years of marriage. It lasted barely a year. Why? She cheated on him.
    My sister’s fiancee cheated on her with her best friend and he left her for the best friend. He cheated on her as well.
    A friend from work cheated on her husband and left him for a friend we had in common. A few months later she went to him with her tail between her legs, turns out she wasn’t the only female in his life. She was the only one stupid enough to walk away from her marriage for him.

    I am sure there are some people who such relationships work out for, but would you feel secure in that relationship knowing how you got together.
    Will Ros not wonder where she is while she’s working late. Will her heart not jump into her mouth every time she sees Monique talking to another woman. Her reaction when Christian brought it up tells me it has crossed her mind. If she doesn’t love Gwen enough to give another woman up then divorce is best, but Monique isn’t a great idea either.

  13. naturallyblonde1221 says:

    great as always

  14. Christian618 says:

    Ok I wasn’t expecting this but then again I lost my concentration. You did say all of their friends were going to have relationship issues. Whether it was a personal or a friendly and business one. Damn Roz needs a whole lot of soul searching. This was great!

  15. Dee says:

    So Ros just proves the saying, “misery loves company”. She probably knows that her Monique is not all in in their relationship.
    It sure would be interesting if Ana joined the team full time. I bet it would be a great relief to Christian. Someone he could totally trust.
    Wonderful episode. ❤️

  16. bichonmomma says:

    Excellent chapter. This was not even a possibility of what I thought was going on with Ros. Wow! Really shocked. I agree with Christian in that Monique had no respect for Ros’ marriage. To me that says a lot. If someone is willing to break apart a marriage don’t think for a second that they won’t do the say to you down the road. What a mess but at least they have an answer for what is going on with a Ros. Congrats on the promotion and glad Pinterest worked out. What a bummer that would have been.

  17. darla says:

    Great chapter, didn’t see Ros as a cheater. I remember “can’t, meetings” and “otherwise” as your homages.

  18. Sarah Wong. says:

    Outstanding simply captivating and outstanding! Your mind is a readers dream! I can’t find it in me to feel sorry for Ros. Really she is supposed to be so intelligent and knowledgeable. Maybe now they can begin to work ……

  19. Junebride says:

    Just finished reading all the comments here and they are right on. When you don’t love someone, let him/her go; however, what Ros did was not right. She slept with this Monique the day before her wedding and then on her anniversary! That’s what I call f*cked up! Never should have married Gwen. And who can say that this Monique once Ros is “free” won’t leave her because the excitement could be being with a married person. That does happen in real life btw. And she did say in not so many words that she was not marriage material. I guess she’s preparing the ground, so Ros won’t have neither one. I surely, being Gwen, wouldn’t give Ros a chance even if she ever came back begging.

    Love how Ana and Christian are working things out between them and putting up a solid front. Glad Christian is noticing Ana standing by his side and wanting to help him out with the company and having him take things easier, be with his family, etc. Their relationship is flourishing and better than ever.

    These come to mind:

    “How was your day (Ms. Steele)?” — when Ana tells Christian, “looking up Mr. Grey” before he and Ros go up on Charlie Tango
    “Can’t, meetings…otherwise” — when Jack Hyde asks Elizabeth if she wants to go to the bar with them for a drink and she gets out of it by saying that.
    “Enlighten me then” when Ana wakes up in the hotel bed after Christian rescues her from her drunken celebration with friends

    These about the two already mentioned — Gwen living across from Escala and Christian having one sexual partner at a time.

    I guess I found more than two.

    I love this story, Goddess. You and your Muse are on fire. Thank you for sharing your gift with us. This was a fascinating chapter.

    I must have missed reading about your promotion. However, congratulations, you deserve it. If you’ll be able to work from home, like I read/understood, I am pretty sure you’ll enjoy it better and all the commute time could be used for better things. So proud of you!

    xoxoxoxoxoxo

    P.S. I am not proofreading this, so I made mistakes in my writing, sorry. It’s getting late and wanted it to go out before I went to bed.

    • falalalynx says:

      Junie! girlfriend! Falala waves like a maniac. There you are. I’ve missed your sweet face. Hey I am the queen of typos. Even when I read thru over and over they still get pass me. Don’t sweat the small things. It just shows us your’e human. xoxoxoxoxoxo Peace, Falala

      • Junebride says:

        Hi, Falala, waiving back!! LOL… I have OCD with typos!! Does that exist? Always good to hear from you. Loved your take with Ash. Never expected that from her (with Gwen). Just remember, karma is a bitch and it seems Monique might not be interested now that Ros is free. Happens often too.
        xoxoxoxoxoxo

      • falalalynx says:

        Hey Junie,
        I can’t believe them when I see them, typos. I mean I do proof read before I post and then I’ll come back and they are soooo glaringly obvious I can’t believe they got by me. So sometimes I read my reply out loud. That seems to be a good way to catch them. grin I think a person could be OCD about just about anything. How are you doing darlin? xoxoxoxo Peace, Falala

    • Girl, please… nobody proofreads comments, lol.

      You got the two intentional homages–“Can’t, meetings, otherwise,” and “Enlighten me then.”

      I didn’t think of “How was your day” as an homage. It was just him asking her how her day was.

      The info about Gwen living across from Escala and Christian having one sexual partner at a time, those were just facts taken from the first books–like Grace and Carrick living in Bellevue–not necessarily homages. However, great attention to detail!

      • falalalynx says:

        Morning Goddess,
        But I do proof read my comments. If I didn’t they would be a sloppy mess and I would be so embarrassed. It takes work to reach my level of perfection. lmao xoxoxoxo Peace, Falala

  20. S. Hodgson says:

    Infidelity. Slightly surprising but it really since it’s the second leading reason for divorce. But now she’s getting it all out and hopefully things will go back to “normal”.

  21. Sue says:

    Falala and seralynsmom

    What does it matter if he saw it black and white and jumped to conclusions? The fact is that he was right either way. This just shows how important monogamy is to him. Ros is a bitch for what she did to Gwen and no matter how you spin it she deserves everything she’s got.
    And seralynsmom your point is moot cause Ros did not marry Gwen and then later on fell in love with someone else cause yes that can happen but that is not what happened here. She married Gwen while cheating on her already and knowing she was not the one. Cause if she was there is no way she could’ve cheated or had any doubt about her feelings. Christians point was that if she married Gwen there is no way she could start the conversation now with I met someone else. She has no business talking about anyone else while married to Gwen as far as Christian is concerned.
    Personally I would say a shady woman like that is not to be trusted. Not in business, not personally. I feel like if she could deceive people like this what else is she capable of? The thing that gets me is that because of this I suddenly see her as an enemy and not an ally anymore. Maybe a bit drastic but that’s how I feel.
    So Falala I agree with you too.

    • falalalynx says:

      Good morning Sue,

      Oh it doesn’t matter in the least Sue. I was just making a friendly defense of Christian because Ash took exception, in her opinion, to his black or white view. grin That and I hadn’t swapped opinions with her in a while. I have such a fun time talking about my favorite story with everyone here. I know Ash won’t be offended if I disagree with her. We have had some doozey discussions before. But I love her bunches and bunches. I’m even Fairy godmother to her daughter. I find Ash delightful.

      I’m having trouble with Ros myself now. Her behavior towards Ana and her attitude about work would be cause for dismissal imo. Christian has gone above and beyond his ‘normal’ approach to employees with her. He’s treating her differently than he has other department heads that’s for sure.

      Oh hell I just had a conspiracy theory about Monique. grin Is she playing some type of long con on Ros to get insider info on the workings of GEH? A Myrick plant/spy? omg noo Falala go and get some coffee. You are crazy girl.

      Lovely chatting with you Sue. Peace, Falala

      • Junebride says:

        You just planted a little bug there, Falala. Who knows what Monique has up her a$$. At this point anything is game. The least that can happen is that now that Ros is free, she leaves her for another married woman. She might like married women. If she did it once (that we know of), she’ll do it again. I’m kind of leaning that Ros can no longer be trusted, too.

      • falalalynx says:

        I know sometimes my imagination gets the better of me. giggle

  22. CG girl says:

    Ah I never figured Ros for a cheater a jealous bitch maybe but a cheaper..I certainty caught a few flies… Loved this episode. Now I can’t wait for Green valley.

  23. MichelleCheri’ says:

    Love these last two episodes dealing with the issues of the business and inserting itself inside their marriage and home life. And finally we get to Ros and her real issues. Yeah she is so out of whack that she is projecting it into the workplace. The one thing Ros has going for her is being a sharp executive in a high profile company, no matter her personal life is a mess.
    Finally glad Christian confronted both of them to pull their weight instead of waiting for direction by making it crystal clear his expectation.

    And finally Ros comes clean. 😁

    On the other topic here –
    Communication is just as important as anything in any relationship and more difficult at times to do right.

    Homage to Fifty Shades:
    – penthouse and Ros/Gwen living across from Christian.
    – whipping brown haired submissive to release
    – no more than one at a time.

  24. JoAnn says:

    What a great chapter especially the Ros twist. I agree with Christian. What makes Ros think this Monique will value a relationship? She knew Ros was in a relationship but didn’t care. So when she cheats on Ros then what? I love the Ana in these two chapters. I love ball breaker Ana. On a more personal note… I want my mommy as well. She’s been gone since December 2015 and I’d give anything to talk to her again. As for Pinterest, Fuck them!!!

  25. Dee says:

    Oh my Sue, Seralynsmom, Falala, I felt like I was at a tennis match, the only thing missing was a bowl of popcorn! It’s funny because I agreed with everything that was said at the time I was reading it, go figure. 😳
    Thanks ladies it was entertaining, and insightful.❤️

  26. falalalynx says:

    We just need the Goddess period! grin Patience grasshopper. grin

  27. Well….WOW! Great chapter! As for Ros relationship issues or not she shouldn’t have let that effect her work performance, an it’s obviously not because she was totally unhappy the entire time over Gwen because she still had her side piece keeping her company. I personally don’t think she should have ever married Gwen with Monique on her mind and in her bed the night before the wedding. Getting married to someone because their safe sadly happens all the time but thinking it’s going to suddenly “fix” you, well that rarely EVER happens… Christians response is understandable, this is a couple he held in high regard, hence “ the poster couple for same sex marriage”, he trusts ( or at least had full trust in Ros until this revelation), he’s always been monogamous so cheating isn’t something he can relate to or understand. Also something else Ros has now shown that her bitchy attitude and behavior was a result because SHE was unhappy with choices she made, choices Christian doesn’t agree with which could also make him question her loyalty to him & GEH. He was right to point out Monique’s lack of respect for commitment and that she may end up doing the same to Ros….that old saying we always want what we can’t have until we can have it then no longer want it. While she might think all these feelings with Monique are hotter and better then the love she had with Gwen she may soon realize the grass isn’t always greener on the other side. As for Ana coming in an doing their jobs for them, they both need to be kissing her ass right now. Hell if I had to contend with him being an asshole every night and my marriage was subsequently on the line because two people who are supposed to be helping him are pulling their weight I think I’d probably have marched right in there and had a few more things to say to them. Hopefully the executive team gets back on track or I foresee someone with a pink slip….

  28. Beachycolor says:

    I don’t understand feeling guilty for cheating making her bitchy. When I feel guilty about something I feel badly and my stomach hurts. I berate myself not anyone else. It depresses me but doesn’t make me bitchy. Perhaps Roz is entering peri-menapause. Making her act crazy in a number of ways and bitchy fits right in there.

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