This is a work of creativity. As such, you may see words, concepts, scenes, actions, behaviors, pictures, implements, and people that may or may not be socially acceptable and/or offensive. If you are sensitive to adverse and alternative subject matter of any kind, please do not proceed, because I guarantee you’ll find it here. You have been warned. Read at your own risk.
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. If something that I say displeases you, please, just leave. If you don’t like this story or me, please don’t spoil this experience for everyone. Just go away. For the rest of you, the saga continues…
Season 5 Episode 9
“Your witness, Mr. Drake,” Larson says. “Your honor, the state reserves the right to redirect.”
“Yes, sir. Mr. Drake?” Drake comes around the defense table and prepares to face off with my wife.
“Mrs. Grey, you said that you’re the executive director of Grey Enterprises Holdings, Inc., is that correct?” Drake asks.
“Yes, it is.”
“What does that mean?” he asks.
“I’m 50% owner of the company and I participate in overseeing and directing the daily operations.”
“I see—the only thing is that executive directors are generally part of a non-profit organization. Is Grey Enterprises Holdings, Inc. a non-profit organization?”
“No,” I answer flatly.
“Then, why do you have a title for an incorrect business structure?” My brow furrows.
“My husband is the CEO of a corporation that doesn’t have a board. Do you want to pull him up here and ask him why he gave himself that title?”
“Oh, so you gave yourself that title?” I fold my arms.
“I’ll be glad to answer that question if you can tell me what it has to do with this case,” I say.
“Well, if you have nothing to hide, Mrs. Grey, it’s an easy enough answer,” he says with a shrug. I sit there looking at him with my arms folded. That doesn’t sound like a reason to me.
“Your honor, can you please direct the witness to answer the question?” he asks.
“In all honesty, counselor, I’d like to know what it has to do with the case myself,” the judge asks.
“It speaks to her character, your honor,” he replies.
“In what way?” the judge asks. Drake has no answer. “Okay, I’ll rephrase. She also said that she’s assistant director of a charity and a psychiatrist. How does being the owner of a company reflect on her character any more than anything else she says she does?”
Drake is still at a loss of words.
“That information is no more relevant than what she had for dinner last night. Please, move on, counselor.” Drake purses his lips and turns back to me.
“Mrs. Grey, for the benefit of clarification for the court, please tell us the nature of your previous relationship with Cody Whitmore.”
“We didn’t have a relationship.”
“No?” he asks. “Part of this case is that your unborn baby was killed during the attack. Do you know who the father was?” He knows exactly who the father was.
“The father was Cody Whitmore.” I reply. Small murmurs can be heard in the court.
“But you said you didn’t have a relationship with him. How could you have been pregnant with his baby if you didn’t have a relationship with him?” I raise my brow.
“Do you want me to answer that? Because I will,” I threaten.
“I asked, didn’t I?” he taunts. You got it, asshole. Wording is everything…
“As I said before, Cody Whitmore offered to give me a ride home from school one day. That harrowing encounter that I spoke of… he then forced me to have sex with him in the back of his jeep in the middle of the desert,” I say succinctly. There are more murmurs in the courtroom.
“Objection, your honor. She’s accusing Mr. Whitmore of a crime for which he has not been convicted.”
“You asked,” the judge says.
“Your honor, she can’t bring conjecture from another case into this one…”
“There’s no case,” the judge retorts. “You repeatedly asked her about her relationship, and she answered your question. Would you rather she perjured herself?” The attorney raises a brow. “Don’t answer that question. Your objection is overruled. Continue.” Drake turns his glare back to me.
“Mrs. Grey, when Mr. Whitmore forced you to have sex with him, did you tell him to stop?”
“Repeatedly,” I reply.
“A simple yes or no will do,” he says in a condescending tone. “Did you tell anyone?”
“I did,” I say, deliberately ignoring his simple yes or no instructions. He shrugs.
“There was never a case. Mr. Whitmore was never arrested. What happened?” I purse my lips. I don’t want to go through this. We’re not arguing the rape case.
“Isn’t it true that you lied when you accused Cody Whitmore of raping you?” he asks. There it is… he said it…
“No,” I say, forgetting about ignoring yes or no.
“Isn’t it true that your father confronted Cody and Franklin Whitmore in their home about this alleged rape and discovered that you were lying?” he presses.
“If your own father didn’t believe you, why should we?” he barks. I lean forward in the seat.
“Are you going to let me answer a question or are you going to narrate a story that you weren’t even present for?” I retort. Drake is taken aback, but recovers quickly.
“By all means, Mrs. Grey, we’d love to hear your story. We’re all ears,” he says sarcastically.
“No, you’re all mouth, but I’ll speak whenever you’re ready,” I say.
“Mrs. Grey?” the judge warns.
“Apologies,” I say to the judge before turning back to Drake. “May I speak now?” He smirks at me and gestures for me to speak.
“No, my father did not confront Cody and Franklin Whitmore. My father didn’t find out what happened to me until years later. My mother didn’t even tell him. The man who was married to my mother at the time, now he confronted Cody and Frank Whitmore. And no, they didn’t discover that I was lying, because I wasn’t lying. They decided that I was lying. And remember, counselor, I never used the word ‘rape.’ I used the word ‘forced.’ You put the label on it. Then again, a rose by any other name, right?
“And to answer your final question, I don’t care if you believe me or not. Nobody else did, why should you? The baby’s not here anymore—there’s no DNA. So, there’s no way to tell if the baby was even Cody Whitmore’s. There are two important things, though. There’s a video and there are pictures—lots and lots of pictures. So, don’t believe me.” I turn to the jury. “None of you have to believe me… but believe the video.”
“That’s very convincing, Mrs. Grey, but the fact remains that when your relationship with Cody Whitmore…”
“I was raped,” I interrupt him.
“Objection, your hono…”
“I. Was. Raped!” I bellow. All my cool is gone, and if this fucker says that I had a relationship with that asshole one more time…
“You said it,” I continue furious. “You know that’s what it is. No little box that you try to put it in is going to change that. Your truth is not my truth! I was there! I was present when my virginity was unceremoniously and painfully ripped from me without my consent. The fact that you don’t have a nice little piece of paper or a case or a complaint or a conviction from a 15-year-old girl whose stepfather and mother silenced her for a fee won’t erase or undo the fact that I. Was raped!
“You can hold me in contempt of court. You can throw me in jail. You can fine me. You can do whatever you see fit, but what you’re not going to do is call what that man did to me a relationship. I was raped—and they can try him for it and convict him of it, or they can forget this conversation ever happened, but it doesn’t change the facts! Sex without consent is rape, and I was raped… Your Honor!” I turn to the judge on the last two words before turning my gaze back to Drake.
“Your honor?” Drake says, as if Butterfly had said nothing.
“Counselor, you purposely opened this can of worms. Now you need to deal with it. The witness answered your question about the ‘relationship…’” He physically does the finger quotes around the word relationship, “… that she had with the person in question. If there’s something unclear about the answer, you may ask for clarification—which you did, and you received it. She has made an accusation and the court may choose to act on those accusations, but you can’t make her change her answer. Objection overruled.” Drake rolls his eyes.
“Did your alleged rape have anything to do with this case?” Drake probes.
“Do you want me to answer that?” I say, folding my arms and crossing my legs. “I’ll gladly answer that question if you really want me to if for no other reason but to hear you bark another objection.” Drake looks at the judge.
“Your move, counselor,” he says.
“Yes, Mrs. Grey, answer the question,” he replies flatly. I cock my head at the counselor.
“If you ask the 15-year-old ostracized teenager who was hit over the head, thrown into the trunk of a car, spit on, ridiculed, beaten, fearing that they were going to throw her—bound—into that bonfire and burn her alive, she wouldn’t have an answer for you. She was screaming for her life, begging for her mother, and asking what she did wrong. She had no clue what was going on.
“However, if you ask the educated M.D. and psychiatrist sitting in front of you now, well-trained to identify the psychopathic mind, able to look back on the incident with 20/20 hindsight and knowing who perpetrated the act—well, she would give you a whole-hearted ‘yes,’ that her rape had everything to do with that attack!”
“Ob…” I cackle loudly at the beginning of his objection.
“You. Asked!” I abruptly and loudly interrupt his objection. “You should be objecting to your line of questioning if you don’t like my responses, counselor, and not my responses!” Drake looks at the judge.
“She’s got a point,” the judge says. “Mr. Drake, a bit of advice. You can direct your questions any way you see fit as long as it’s not in contempt of this court. You cannot, however, direct the answers of the witness because they answer ‘yes’ when you want them to answer ‘no.’ Your continued objections because you’re not getting the answers that you wish for will drag this case out for weeks and justice will not be served. That is why we’re all here, right?”
He narrows his eyes at the judge like he’s going to leap over the bench at him I’m shocked that he has that much hutzpah… or stupidity, whichever fits.
Drake turns his attention back to me and proceeds to ask me the same questions over and over again. He just rewords them, but they’re pretty much the same. I repeatedly tell him that I didn’t see anybody that night. I saw several figures in black outlined by a bonfire. I heard Carly Madison when she got in my face right before she slapped the stars out of me. I couldn’t identify anything through my tears or through lights being shined in my face and afterwards, through my eyes being swollen shut. After a while, I just begin to give him monotoned answers until he finally changes up a question on me.
“So, you have no idea who hit you, who burned you, who raped you…” Good grief, is this guy the defense attorney for Whitshit, too? He must be, because it’s imperative to him that I slip up on that rape accusation, which has nothing to do with Sullivan.
“Ah, ah, ah,” I interrupt him. “I know who raped me—that came first, but who hit me, who kicked me, who burned me? No, I had no idea from my recollections of that night except Carly Madison for certain. For all I know, it could have been you.”
He recoils a bit at my accusation, then he laughs.
“Mrs. Grey,” he says, his voice filled with mirth, “are you now insinuating that I was part of the attack that night?” He looks at the jury as if to say, “She’s lost her marbles.”
“I’m not insinuating anything, counselor,” I say, folding my arms again and sitting back in the seat. “It’s like I said, I have no specific recollection who attacked me that night because I couldn’t see. So, for all I know, it could have been you… but you’re not in the video.” There’s a pause and an eerie silence follows for a few moments.
“Well, you couldn’t see… maybe I was there,” he taunts.
“Were you?” I ask coolly, resting my elbows on the armrests and entwining my fingers together. “Because if you were, you’re occupying the wrong chair.”
My final words roll out with a low, vicious gravel and I stare at him intently, waiting for him to throw his next question at me. Instead…
“No further questions, your honor,” he says.
“Mr. Larson?” the judge says.
“Redirect, your honor,” Mr. Larson says, and the judge nods.
“Dr. Grey, it’s clear that you didn’t see anyone that night. However, your description of what happened was very thorough. Yet, when the police asked if you remembered anything, you said that you didn’t. How is that possible? Did the video jog your memory?”
“I… remembered… everything,” I say slowly. “I didn’t remember it immediately upon awaking, but I remembered. Every kick, every spit, every stream of piss—the ones that hit my back, my chest, and the ones that went into my eyes and mouth,” she spits with disgust.
“I told my mother that I didn’t remember. I told my father I didn’t remember. I knew who had done this. I could hear their voices. They were taunting me and tormenting me. They were celebrating! But what good would it have done to tell? No one believed me, I was nobody! I was nothing! No matter what happened to me, nobody believed me. I almost died, and nobody would believe me if I told them what happened. If I had died, no one would have mourned me but my best friend and my father. There probably wouldn’t have even been a funeral!
“Tell somebody… for what? For what? I tried once to tell the truth and look what it got me. I told what happened before and look what happened. Where did it get me? Damn near dead at a bonfire where a bunch of teenagers beats me beyond recognition while countless others watched! They already thought I was dead, you heard them. If I tried again, they might really kill me. I was nothing! I was no one! Nobody believed me, nobody ever believed me! Why would I say anything after that? What good would it do?”
I look over at Drake.
“Then he has the nerve to accuse me of practiced regurgitation? Is that something he made up, because I’m a doctor—an MD—and I’ve never heard of it. I’ve heard of self-induced regurgitation, which usually involves a finger. I’ve heard of involuntary regurgitation, which you usually have no control over, but practiced regurgitation? Yeah, my Ph.D. didn’t cover that one, so I may have to go Google it!”
I wonder if that phrase sounds as ridiculous to everyone else now as it does to me.
“And by the way, I don’t have to practice regurgitation with that video because I lived that horror, and anybody who can look at that without some kind of physical or emotional reaction has a heart made of steel and a stomach lined with it!”
Drake isn’t fazed at all by what I’m saying. He doesn’t even bother to look at me. He’s probably heard much worse. He just looks down and scribbles something in his legal pad. I scoff, cock my head, and gesture to Drake to prove my point.
“My mother wasn’t even there. If nobody else in the world believes you, isn’t your mom supposed to believe you? Even after she got all that money, she didn’t believe me. You would think that after that kind of confirmation that something wasn’t right that something would have clicked in her head and she would have realized that I was telling the truth, but no. If anything, it made her treat me even worse for making her look bad in proper society!
“So, I lied. I was a non-person, and nobody was going to believe me anyway. So, I told everyone I didn’t remember, including the police. They questioned me and questioned me… No, they interrogated me—George Sullivan, in fact.”
“Objection—an open case, your honor,” Drake says.
“Sustained,” the judge says. I sigh.
“You said the police interrogated you,” Mr. Larson says.
“Yes,” I say. “I don’t know what I’m allowed to say, but this officer kept at me from the time I woke up in the hospital to the time my father took me back to Montesano. I was gone for months—starting a new life, and when they came and brought me back to this hell, there he was.” I gesture violently with both hands.
“I couldn’t get into any of the schools in Henderson, because I was so damn untouchable. They came up with whatever reasons they wanted to, but they wouldn’t let me in, and I sure as hell wasn’t going back to Green Valley. I went to a completely different school in a completely different district under a completely different name, and he still found me. He asked me at least eight times over the next year and a half if I remembered anything, and I gave him the same answer every time.
“Then my boyfriend came down here and shit started hitting the fan… And that’s when I knew.”
“Knew what, Mrs. Grey?” Mr. Larson asks.
“What they won’t let me say,” I reply matter-of-factly. “What he’s going to object to if I mention his client’s brother’s name and what he’s currently being charged with. So, I may not be able to say that, but I can say this. George Sullivan found me no matter where I was. I didn’t leave a forwarding address or a phone number when I ran away from Vegas. I just ran… but he found me. My daddy didn’t even know where I was, but George Sullivan did.
“For the first few years, he called me repeatedly trying to find out if anything had come back. No, nothing, I would tell him. I was trying so hard to push the entire situation as far back into the recesses of my mind as I could get it. It wouldn’t do any good for me to speak up. Nobody cared, just this one diligent cop from Henderson… right?”
“What did you do, Mrs. Grey?” Mr. Larson asks.
“I lived in fear,” I reply. “My father taught me to shoot… well! I can hit a mosquito off a soda can at 20 feet, and I still lived in fear. I had a total meltdown when George Sullivan called me three years ago and told me that someone was looking around in my alias. I was afraid they were looking for me again. He was afraid someone was going to find out what really happened.”
“Objection,” Drake says. “She can’t speak to the state of mind of someone who’s not here to confirm or deny.”
“Sustained,” the judge says. I roll my eyes.
“It doesn’t matter,” I say.
“It does matter, Mrs. Grey,” Larson says. “That’s why we’re here.”
“No, it doesn’t,” I say raising my eyes to him. “They can’t hurt me anymore. But I will tell you this. If anybody believes me or not, I know they’re listening. George Sullivan nearly went into a rage when my boyfriend came down here and started sniffing around. He threatened me—threatened me to call him off—pretending that he was protecting me all this time.” I scoff. “Protecting me… that’s rich.” I shake my head. Mr. Larson sighs.
“That’s all I have for this witness, your honor.” Mr. Larson says.
“Redirect, Mr. Drake?” he says.
“No, your honor,” Drake replies. Thank God! I’m ready to get out of here.
“Very well. It’s later than I thought, but we’re going to take an hour recess for lunch and resume testimony this afternoon. Court is in recess until 2:30pm.” He bangs his gavel and the jury is led out of one side of the courtroom while Vincent Sullivan is led out of the other side. Christian says something to Jason as I make my way over to our group. He holds the half-gate open for me and gently grasps both biceps the moment I pass through the gate.
“Are you okay?” he asks, examining my eyes intently. “What do you need?”
I can’t lie to him. I’m not okay. This whole thing is driving me nuts and I’m a nervous wreck… and it’s nowhere near over. So, I ignore the first question and answer the second one.
“A double-shot of vodka,” I reply. He envelops me in his arms and embraces me warmly.
“When we get back, I promise,” he says. I sink into his chest and just stand there for a while. I wish I could just stay like this and not have to deal with this crap, but…
“Jason is retrieving our lunch. It’s already downstairs. Come on, let’s go eat.” I nod and reluctantly pull myself away from my husband’s chest. He cups my cheek again and gazes into my eyes, raising his brows. I nod once and we proceed to the door.
It’s Mr. Larson. He catches us just as we’re stepping away from the seats. He allows the people closest to us to file out of the room before he speaks.
“I want you to know that I was only doing my job when I contacted you about Mrs. Whitmore. I don’t regret that, and I’d do it again.”
My husband glares at him, but says nothing. He’s holding my hand firmly and I can tell that he wants to say something, but he doesn’t. This is the wrong place and time for you to bring that shit up.
“But… for how I behaved when we first met,” he continues, “sir, I am sincerely sorry. I truly hope you’ll accept my apology.”
My husband is clearly taken aback by his statement. I can tell that the anger is knocked right out of him and he’s a bit confused.
“Maybe one day, I’ll explain my reaction to you. Just know that I’m sorry, sir,” he says before he turns back to the prosecutor’s table to gather his things. I look up at my husband and he gazes back at me questioning. I don’t know how to take this either, so I just shrug.
“Mr. Larson,” he says. He has just finished stacking his materials and he turns around.
“I accept your apology,” he says, proffering his hand to Mr. Larson, who nods once and accepts the shake.
“Thank you,” he says, his voice low.
“Now, fry this guy,” Christian adds.
“Beyond recognition,” he confirms. “I’ll nail his ass to the wall.” Christian nods and releases his hand, then opens the gate for Mr. Larson to exit.
“Have a good lunch, Mr. Grey, Dr. Grey.” He steps out and leaves the courtroom.
We lunch on Capriotti’s subs, chips, and sodas, and although they are quite tasty, I’m hoping this isn’t what our lunch is going to look like every day. I can’t tolerate much more than this anyway on my nervous—and recently emptied—stomach. However, I ask Jason if he can find somewhere close that may deliver kabobs or chicken wraps or something else light, just in case I have another bout with practiced regurgitation. He vows to get on it.
I notice that Marilyn only sips on a Gatorade and a meal replacement shake for lunch. I also notice Christian’s reaction to her lack of real sustenance, but he doesn’t press the matter, probably because he’s too concerned about me. It doesn’t get past me that she didn’t eat anything at dinner yesterday either.
I feel like I’m headed to the gallows when we go back to the courtroom. The only good news about this whole thing is that I don’t have to testify anymore. We’re seated, Vincent Sullivan is seated, and the jury comes back in…
And Mr. Larson calls his next witness to the stand.
“The state calls George Sullivan to the stand.”
The murmurs begin immediately. George Sullivan is led in through the same door that his brother Vincent came through moments ago. For the first time since he’s been in the courtroom, Vincent raises his head and a disbelieving gaze to his brother. George takes a seat on the witness stand and is sworn in. He’s wearing a dark blue suit just like his brother, and they’re sporting matching bracelets courtesy of the Department of Corrections.
I know that he’s about the same age as Jason, maybe only a couple of years older, but he looks older than my dad. He’s got the whole gray sideburn thing going on with the rugged thinning gray beard look. He would be attractive for an older gentleman… if it wasn’t for that whole obstructing-justice-evidence-tampering thing.
Vincent is just as horrified as I am surprised to see George on the stand. He’s going to testify against his own brother? After everything he’s done to protect him?
“State your name for the record, sir,” Mr. Larson says.
“George Randolph Sullivan.”
“And your current address?”
“Currently the Clark County Detention Center.”
“Mr. Sullivan, can you tell the court what your occupation was on March 10, 2001?” Mr. Larson asks.
“I was a police officer in the city of Henderson,” he says.
“And what’s your relation to this case, Mr. Sullivan?”
“I was the first officer on the scene of the attack,” he replies. Mr. Larson raises a brow.
“The first officer?” he asks. George Sullivan clears his throat.
“The only officer,” he clarifies. Mr. Larson nods.
“Were you responding to a call of a disturbance?” he says.
“Was there an emergency or crime in progress that you were immediately aware of?” Mr. Larson presses.
“So, what brought you to this particular gathering?”
“I saw the fire from the street,” he says. “It’s illegal to open burn anywhere in Clark county.”
“That’s not what he told me,” Christian whispers to me.
“Did you expect him to tell you the truth?” I whisper back.
“So, what happened when you saw the fire? Did you investigate?” Mr. Larson continues his questioning.
“Yes, I did,” George Sullivan says.
“And then what?”
“As soon as I drove up to the fire, everybody ran away.” Mr. Larson retrieves another document from the evidence table.
“Your honor, the state is entering into evidence exhibit 104,” Mr. Larson says and hands the document to George Sullivan. “Mr. Sullivan, can you please tell the court what you’re holding?”
“It appears to be the police report from March 10, 2001,” he replies.
“Can you please read the highlighted section to the court,” Mr. Larson says. George Sullivan sighs.
“’There were several school age children surrounding the victim. When I arrived, they dropped her and ran away. Upon closer investigation, I discovered that she was unconscious and unresponsive.’”
“What did you do after that, Mr. Sullivan?”
“I called for paramedics,” he says.
“And then they came,” George Sullivan answers, his voice dripping with sarcasm.
“Let me rephrase my question. Was the victim naked?”
“Did you try to cover her?”
“Did you attempt to administer CPR?”
“Did you do anything at all to assist Anastasia Steele in any way when you saw her lying nearly lifeless on the ground?” Mr. Larson presses. George Sullivan sighs heavily.
“Did you check for a pulse…?”
“You asked me if I did anything to help her. I said, ‘No,’” George Sullivan snaps. Mr. Larson pauses.
“So, I just want to make sure that I have this correct, Mr. Sullivan,” Mr. Larson retorts firmly. “You saw her naked; you saw the burns; you saw the bleeding; you saw the bruises. You were still an officer of the law at the time, and you did nothing. Correct?”
Ouch! Double ouch!
“Correct,” George Sullivan nearly growls.
“How long did it take for the paramedics to arrive?”
“It’s Henderson. Three minutes, maybe?” he says.
“Are you asking me or telling me, Mr. Sullivan?” Mr. Larson says.
“About three minutes,” he replies.
“And how did you know where to tell them to come? Did you see an address? Did you know where you were?”
“The GPS in my squad car,” George Sullivan replies.
“So, you went back to your squad car to call the paramedics,” Mr. Larson presses.
“Did you call for backup?”
“Did you collect any evidence?” There’s a pause.
“I refuse to answer to avoid self-incrimination.”
And here we go. He satisfied his subpoena by showing up. He can corroborate what evidence they may have, but any of the circumstantial or uncorroborated evidence that can possibly be used against his brother, he can plead the fifth.
The judge has to call order to the courtroom, because several separate conversations have ensued.
“You’ve already said the perpetrators ran from the scene. Did they leave their cars behind? Did you gather any license plates?”
Of course, he did. He confessed that to me when he was trying to get me to call Christian off, but of course…
“I refuse to answer to avoid self-incrimination.”
“You show up at a bonfire where a girl is being brutalized beyond recognition. It’s your duty to protect and serve, sir. If you couldn’t do it, then you should have stepped down and let somebody else do it who could. You could look at that young girl and do nothing? You can even look at this now and feel no conviction for your actions, or lack thereof?” George looks over at his brother and his gaze softens before he says,
“I refuse to answer to avoid self-incrimination.”
Even now, he’s throwing himself on his sword for his brother. It would be admirable had I not been the girl at the receiving end of the brand.
“Thank God you didn’t work in my jurisdiction,” Mr. Larson seethes.
“Objection, your honor,” Drake says.
“Sustained. Counselor?” the judge warns.
“I have no further questions for this witness, your honor,” Mr. Larson says, his voice dripping with disgust. “It’s not like he’s going to answer them anyway.”
“Your witness, Mr. Drake,” the judge says.
“Mr. Sullivan, did you positively identify any of the teenagers who fled the scene that night?”
“I did not.”
“Did you personally examine any evidence that placed any perpetrators at the scene that night?” George Sullivan ponders the question.
“I did not.”
“Did any witnesses come forward to you with any information about the attack?”
“When she was conscious, did Anastasia Steele give you any information about her attackers?”
“Did you ask Anastasia Steele any time after the attack if she knew who her attackers were?”
“Did she tell you?”
“No further questions for this witness.”
The bailiff leads George Sullivan out of the courtroom, and he stares at his brother the entire time with sad eyes. I don’t know what to feel right now—anger, betrayal, sympathy… what the fuck, who cares?
The next witnesses to be sworn in were the paramedics. This is the first time I’ve heard this part of the story.
“I expected to find a full-on crime scene,” one of the paramedics explains, “or the area taped off or something, cops walking around checking things out… I only saw one guy. He walked right from his car and took us over to where she was. I thought she was dead. I wondered why he called us instead of the medical examiner. When I saw that she was still alive, we got to work.”
“What did you do?” Mr. Larson asks.
“We put a halo on her first, and then we had to get her onto the backboard. We couldn’t roll her over because her skin was hanging off her back. She was in really bad shape. I’ve seen people cut from cars with the jaws of life with less injuries than she had. Everywhere… just everywhere. She was bruised up and swollen all over. She smelled heavily of urine. Her hair was matted and sticking to her face and head. We had to put the IV in her foot.
“Like I said, we couldn’t roll her over to transport her. We put clean, wet gauze on her back before we covered her with a sheet and transferred her to the stretcher. It was pretty cold, and she was already at a risk of hypothermia. We had no idea how long she had been lying there, so we did try to cool the burns. The officer said he had only been there moments before he called us, but she was freezing.
“We had her face-down on the backboard, but we couldn’t put her face in the pillow, or she would suffocate. Rolling her on her side was too risky because she could roll over on her back. So, we had to fashion a head rest for her, like a massage table, so that she wouldn’t suffocate or get hurt further in transport. I called in a hot response priority 2 emergency—non-responsive female, approximately 16 years old, evidence of multiple blunt force trauma—and we got her to the ER.”
“Can you tell the court what ‘hot response’ is?” Mr. Larson asks.
“Lights and sirens,” he responds.
“What happened when you got her to the hospital?”
“Well, you know how those teams are. They want to roll you out and get you into trauma as quickly as possible, but we had to stop them and explain to them how we had her rigged in the ambulance…”
Drake didn’t have many questions for the paramedics. He asked them the same ridiculous questions that he asked George Sullivan—was anybody else at the scene when they got there; did they see anything; blah, blah, blah. Now it’s time for the doctor to testify. His story pretty much picks up where the paramedics left off…
“We couldn’t just yank her out of the ambulance, but we didn’t have any other way to transport her but to roll her onto her side. We could prop her body forward a little on pillows and stabilize her neck on the halo the same way. Then we just held her in place until we got her to the examination room.
“The paramedics told us that they took no pictures of her at the scene—that there was only one cop there and they thought he was waiting for backup, but he never touched the girl. For liability purposes and possible chain of command and evidence, we took pictures—before and after we cleaned her up.”
“You cleaned her up before you treated her?” Mr. Larson asks.
“We had to. We couldn’t see the scars or bruises except for those awful second-degree burns on her back. We couldn’t see who she was but cleaning her up didn’t help much. She didn’t have any fingerprints on file, no DNA. We had no way to identify her.” Mr. Larson goes to the evidence table and retrieves another document.
“Your honor, the state is entering into evidence exhibit 119,” Mr. Larson says and hands the document to the doctor. “Doctor, if you could, please tell us the extent of Ms. Steele’s injuries as indicated in this report.” The doctor clears his throat, pulls a pair of reading glasses from his pocket and put them on.
“The patient suffered from multiple contusions all over her body.” He reads a little more. “She had five broken ribs, a collapsed lung… two dislocated shoulders, a badly sprained ankle, several cuts and scrapes of unknown origins.” He flips the page.
“She suffered from two hematomas—acute subdural and epidural, the second of which caused the coma. Both hematomas were treated in the hospital. She had three second-degree burns on her back, and she was pregnant—approximately five weeks. The fetus ejected before she came out of the coma.”
Jesus, I had subdural and epidural hematomas? How did I never know this?
“How long was Ms. Steele in a coma?”
“Three weeks,” the doctor says.
“And what happened during those three weeks?”
“We were waiting for the police to come up with a missing person’s report, but nothing came up for days. One officer came almost every day, asking if she had regained consciousness. I thought it was pretty strange that he didn’t ask for any evidence.”
“Objection, your honor,” Drake says.
“Grounds?” the judge says.
“The doctor is testifying to the issue of whether the police collected evidence. He doesn’t know what they did or didn’t collect.”
“Your honor, the doctor is only stating that the police didn’t ask him for evidence,” Mr. Larson interjects. “The police would have had to consult with the attending physician or the parents before collecting evidence from an unconscious minor.”
“He’s right, Mr. Drake. Objection overruled. Continue, Mr. Larson.”
“Doctor, were you finished with your answer?”
“Well, only that we waited a week before we washed her hair in case they wanted evidence. After that, we had to wash it. It was putrid.”
“What happens next?” Larson asks.
“We wait,” the doctor says. “A couple of weeks later, this lady shows up and says she’s the girl’s mother. She gives us the name Anastasia Steele, shows us her birth certificate, and she’s Carla Morton. We asked why she hadn’t come forth sooner. She indicated that she thought the girl had run away. A few days after that, Anastasia wakes up. We had already released whatever findings we had to the police. That was pretty much the extent of our involvement except to make sure that she recovered—physically, that is.”
“Can you tell us what you mean by that?” Mr. Larson asks.
“You didn’t see this kid,” the doctor says. “I’m not a psychiatrist. I didn’t know what to say to her. Her mother had showed up and while I could suggest care, I couldn’t do anything without permission. This girl was messed up pretty bad. Had that been my daughter…” He trails off shaking his head.
“This kid was messed up pretty bad,” he repeats. “We could make sure that her body was healed. We couldn’t do anything else.”
The doctor finishes the story of my healing, indicating that I was discharged to Daddy and that was the last he had heard about it. Drake only asks if he’s certain about the length of my pregnancy, to which the doctor replies that in his professional opinion, I was five weeks pregnant.
I am exhausted, and I want to go to bed. Had he not called a recess until tomorrow, I would have walked out.
We gather outside of the courtroom and prepare for the building exit. Knowing the formation my family is going to take to keep me from being hounded by the press, I have to make an announcement before we get on the elevator.
“I want to thank every single one of you for making this trip. I couldn’t do this without each and every one of you.”
“You’re welcome, Annie.”
“Of course, Ana, we love you.”
“Sure thing, Bosslady.”
“Don’t mention it, Jewel.”
Home, sweet home… at least for the moment. I’m stepping out of my shoes as soon as we walk into the suite. I look back at my husband and he’s looking at his phone and frowning.
“Shit,” he hisses and sits down at the dining table, swiping his phone and putting it to his ear. “Lorenz… what happened?”
Lorenz? Did he say Lorenz?
“When did that happen?”
Jesus, they’re going to bother him while he’s here? Seriously? This is like one of the most stressful and most important moments of my life, and they can’t give him this time to be with me? I’m utterly surprised that these fuckers didn’t call him while I was in Labor and Delivery with my goddamn twins!
“Christian,” I say, intent on letting him know that I’m displeased with them contacting him unless the building is burning the fuck down. He’s listening intently on the line, his expression impassive, but he doesn’t acknowledge me calling his name.
What the fuck?
This is my time and, dammit, I want my time. I need to decompress from the shit that happened in court and I need his moral support more than ever. And now, I find that I have to share him with GEH during this time? These fuckers got my Christmas. They’re not getting this time.
“Christian!” I say more forcefully. He turns an intense glare to me that unnerves me a bit.
“This is my time, Christian,” I say firmly, my voice relaying a confidence that I had a minute ago but has faltered a bit with that glare.
“I just need a few minutes to get this straightened out,” he says, just as firmly.
“Why can’t they handle this on their own?” I say, trying not to whine. “We’re not on vacation…”
“I just need a few minutes,” he says again, his irritation rising. I can hear Ros through his phone, and she hasn’t stopped talking, so he must have muted the phone.
“God, I’m so tired of them not being able to make a decision without you!” I’m whining now. “This is my time and I need you!”
“Anastasia! I only need a few minutes!” he shouts, and I do mean he shouts.
He doesn’t wait for me to answer him. He turns his attention right back to the call, unmuting it so that he can interject with a question. If I respond to that, there’s going to be a fight. I know it, and I’m sure that he knows it, too.
I gaze at him in horror for about five seconds after he starts talking again. Then, I turn around and leave the room. I pick up my purse and shoes and march out of the suite, closing the door behind me.
I suddenly deflate once I leave the room. I suddenly feel… useless… no, meaningless. I probably shouldn’t, but I do. If there’s one time where I feel that I should take precedence over anything else, it’s now.
I can’t even lift my head. It’s like a boulder came out of nowhere and knocked all the wind and the fight right out of me. I watch the carpeted floor as I walk to the elevator. I mindlessly push the button and listen for the “ding” that’ll take me away from this floor. I don’t hear it, but the doors open, and I step inside, pressing the button labelled Sky Bar.
I put my shoes on while I’m in the elevator. I want to throw a temper tantrum. Part of me feels like I’m being unreasonable. The other part of me feels like my feelings never count. I’m supposed to understand, and the fact that I hurt or don’t like something doesn’t matter, whether it’s reasonable or not.
The elevator opens and I exit to a bar with floor to ceiling windows and an enviable view of the Las Vegas Strip, that is, if I didn’t totally resent being here. Fuck it, I need a drink.
I have to go to that courtroom every day and put on the strong façade, pretending that this stuff isn’t ripping me apart from the inside out. I have to listen to them portray me as a wanton slut at fifteen who was asking for it from Cody Whitshit and deserved to be tortured by a gang of ruthless, vicious teenagers. I have to relive the agonizing loneliness I felt and the bone-trembling fear that I was going to die that night; the feelings of wishing that I had died that night instead of having to stay here with the people who called themselves my parents.
All those horrible feelings are coming back to me. They’re rushing in on me—in the morning when I get up to get dressed to go to the courtroom; when I walk into the courtroom; when I have to sit and listen to this garbage—and today, I’m barely holding on by a thread.
As I sit here sipping my vodka rocks that Christian promised me when we took a break for lunch, determined not to get drunk since I must be in court again tomorrow for yet more abuse, I’m slowly—and finally—coming to grips with the fact that I and our family will always come second when it comes to GEH. Part of me feels that it shouldn’t be that way, that I and the twins should be first and foremost on his list of priorities. The other part of me feels as though things are just as they should be.
GEH was always his first real love. He built that company on nothing but a loan and an idea, and he’s become one of the most powerful men in the country—arguably, the world. Of course, he would want to nurture it and make sure that it remains well and profitable. Even I put everything in my life on hold to go down there and bang out some of the problems in the company.
As logical as that sounds, I still feel the churning in my stomach and the sinking and burning that comes along with ultimate rejection. I’m sensible; I know that’s not what’s going on, but I can’t ignore it… I’m undeniably jealous that she gets first billing.
I refuse to let the tears fall that burn my eyes right now, but the Bitch is inside bawling her eyes out and having a full-on temper tantrum.
“You look like you could use a friend.”
A deep, smooth voice with a British accent breaches my thoughts, and I look over to see a very handsome black man sliding into the bar stool next to me.
What am I supposed to do? I could use a friend, but I really don’t want to engage some stranger. I can’t even think of a snappy comeback right now, but…
“Oh, the silent type, I see,” he says as he gestures to the bartender. “Can you make a bramble, mate?” he asks. The bartender nods and proceeds to mix gin with lemon and something else. I’m not really paying attention.
“It helps to talk,” he presses while the bartender mixes his cocktail. I sigh.
“I hope you don’t take this as me being rude, but I’m very married,” I say, looking at him only long enough to make my statement, then turning back to my drink.
“I gathered as much,” he says. “That rock you’re wearing can probably be seen from a space station.” The bartender brings his drink and sets it in front of him. “I’m not trying to bed ya, love. Like I said, sometimes, it helps to talk.” I push the short part of my hair behind my ear.
“That’s very kind of you, but I’m not in the practice of talking intimately to strangers.” He nods and takes a drink of his bramble.
“Well, talking to strangers is how you make friends,” he says. “Do you live here?” he asks, apparently still trying to break the ice.
“No,” I reply. “I’m here on business…” so to speak.
“What type of business?” he presses.
“That’s one of those intimate details that I’d rather not share,” I reply. Part of me wants to call Chuck for help. I shouldn’t have left the floor without him anyway. The other part of me is glad that he’s not here macho-ing up on this guy. I’m not really sure I could even tolerate it at the moment.
“I see,” he says, taking another healthy sip of his drink. “Well, I’m on vacation. I’ve always wanted to come to Vegas, to see what all the fuss was about. It’s pretty—lots of lights and things to grab your attention, but besides that, I’m afraid it’s not much.”
I could have told you that.
“My name’s Roland,” he says. What’s yours?”
“Anastasia,” I reply, not really sure I should have given him my name, but my innate good manners kicked in before my brain could tell my mouth to stop.
“It’s nice to meet you, Anastasia,” he says, lifting his drink in a salute. I just nod. I don’t have the strength to beat them off with a stick every time they approach me, especially not today. If I tell you that I’m married, that should be enough. Even though I know it’s not for some people, it’s enough for me.
I continue to sip my vodka rocks until it’s gone, then I ask the bartender for another. Roland is still chattering about something, but I’m only half paying attention—something about the shows on the strip and the cost of everything in Vegas, I’m not completely sure. I’ve already decided to leave the bar once I’ve finished my drink… I’m just not in any hurry to finish my drink.
At that moment, the bartender comes back to us with a second drink for Roland. Okay, I’m not drunk—he didn’t order a second drink.
“What is this?” Roland asks.
“Another bramble, sir,” the bartender replies.
“I… didn’t order this,” Roland protests. “I intended to, but I didn’t order it.”
“It’s compliments of the gentleman at the end of the bar.”
We both look to the end of the bar to see who ordered the drink for Roland.
“Very intense looking bloke,” Roland says. For some reason, his accent makes me think of Australia. We had our moments, but the trip was fun overall. I wish I was there now instead of here.
“I think he’s trying to get me to leave,” Roland says, his voice smooth. I raise my eyes to the “bloke” at the end of the bar and calmly turn back to my drink, taking a small sip.
“I think he is, too,” I say, pushing the short part of my hair behind my ear before turning to look at the handsome black man. “That’s my husband.”
Roland raises a brow at me, then looks at Christian. He raises his fresh drink to Christian again and nods before turning his attention back to me.
“It was nice talking to you, Anastasia,” he says, his voice still honey smooth. “I hope that whatever situation has you feeling and looking so defeated is rectified soon.” I purse my lips and fight back the tears that threaten to fall.
“Thank you,” I say, just above a whisper without raising my gaze from the glass. He stands up and walks away. I take a moment to compose myself, quickly wiping away the tear that falls just as Roland leaves the bar. I feel and hear him take the seat next to me.
“What’s his name?” he asks, with no malice. I look over at him briefly and he’s looking at me with kind eyes.
“Roland,” I say, taking another swallow of my drink before staring back into the glass.
“He’s attractive,” he observes. I don’t answer. “What does he do?”
“I don’t know,” I reply, without looking up from my glass. “I’m sure you’ll find out though.”
“Okay,” he says. “I guess I deserved that. You can’t be angry with me for wanting to protect what’s mine,” he adds. I look over at him.
“No, I guess I can’t, can I?” I say before turning my gaze back to my drink.
“You two talked for a little while. He doesn’t know who you are?” he asks.
“He did the talking,” I say, still staring down into my drink. “If he knows who I am, he didn’t let on.” He sighs.
“I protect what’s mine, Butterfly. GEH is mine, too,” he defends softly.
“I am very aware of that,” I reply, still coming to grips with the fact that no matter what happens, GEH will always be first. I’ve been jockeying with GEH for position for quite some time now. It’s high time for me to realize that’s a battle I’m not going to win. I’m not angry about it, just a little disappointed. Had I accepted it sooner, I might not have felt so forlorn at Christmas. It’s my own fault. How could I expect him to change just because he married me?
“You know you’re important to me, don’t you?” he asks. I nod. I know.
“You know that you and the twins are the most important things in my life, don’t you?”
What do I say? Do I lie to him? Of course, I know we’re the most important things to you, more important than your precious company that you’ve poured years of hard work, sleepless nights, and blood, sweat, and tears into to get it to where it is today…
“You don’t know?” he says after I’ve taken too long to answer. I shake my head as if to shake off a bad daydream. He turns his stool to me and leans his arm on the bar.
“I would give it all up for you. Don’t you know that?” he asks with earnest.
“I would never ask you to do that,” I emphasize, evading the question.
“But you know that I would,” he reiterates, waiting for me to acknowledge his confession. Maybe it’s the stress of the case, or maybe it’s the alcohol, but I can’t hold the tears back anymore.
“Sometimes, I don’t,” I say, my voice soft with tears falling down my cheeks. “The business that you’ve built provides us with an incredible life. It provides me and the twins with everything we could possibly hope for, possibly ever need… but I still feel like I come second to GEH. Isn’t that the most selfish thing you’ve ever heard?”
I bury my face in my hands and cry silently. I don’t want to draw attention to myself. If he doesn’t do what he does, how can we live the life that we live?
“How can this be?” he says earnestly, but quietly as he puts his arm around the back of my seat. “How can you possibly not know that everything I do, I do for you and the twins?”
“That’s not true,” I say, turning my tear-streaked gaze to him. “The twins and I benefit greatly from what you do, but you would do it whether the twins and I were here or not. I’m not asking you not to do it; I’m not asking you to change at this point. I know it would be impossible. I’m just trying to find a way to deal with this discovery…”
“What discovery?” he interrupts.
“That GEH always comes first!” I say firmly. “You say that we come first, and you may even think that, but it’s not true. I’ve always known that; it just didn’t affect me like it does right now. The only reason that I’m feeling extra sensitive at this moment is because I need you. I selfishly want all of your attention while I’m trudging waist-deep through bullshit, and I’m not going to get it. If anything of any importance happens at GEH, she’s going to get it first and I just have to stand in line!”
My voice is getting louder and I don’t want to make a scene. I stand from my seat and scurry out of the bar. I see Chuck standing to the right of the entrance as I brush past.
Of course, he is. I wonder how long he’s been standing there. Probably as long as I’ve been in the bar.
I’m not running away from the conversation. I just don’t want to have it in the bar.
I uselessly try to wipe the falling tears from my face in the most unladylike fashion and begin to search my purse for a tissue or something when I see a handkerchief in my peripheral. I take the hanky from my husband and attempt to dry my face. It’s completely illogical for me to feel this way. I know where I stand, and most days, I can deal with it, but today, I’m insanely jealous.
“I can’t believe that you don’t know you’re the most important thing in my life,” he says, his voice low. I don’t raise my gaze to him, and I don’t respond. Like I said, I know where I stand.
When the elevator arrives, I see an extra set of feet enter with us and I know that it’s Chuck. He wasn’t with me when I came down the elevator, so they most likely tracked my phone. We ride in silence until we get to our floor, and Chuck wordlessly leaves the elevator headed to the security suite. Christian moves in front of me, unlocks the door with the card key, and holds it open for me. I walk in and drop my purse on the nearest surface before taking a deep, cleansing breath and shakily releasing it.
“I call Downtime,” he says, his voice even. I turn to face him, glaring at him in disbelief.
“You’re calling Downtime now?” I ask.
“Yes,” he says. “We need the rules of Downtime, right now.”
I almost want to decline, but I know that would be a huge setback in so many ways. He removes his jacket and tie and tosses it onto the sofa. Then he comes over to me and unbuttons my shirt and pushes it off my shoulders. He reaches around me and unzips my skirt and lets it fall to the floor. He takes my hand and helps me to step out of the skirt, still crumpled on the floor, and leads me to one of the large chairs. He sits down first, then gestures for me to sit on his lap.
I roll my eyes inwardly, but I’m too tired to resist at this point. Still dressed in my underwear, shoes, and stockings, I take a seat on his lap. He removes my shoes and then adjusts me so that I’m somewhat cradled in his arms. It takes no time at all, and I’m in a submissive state of mind. My body relaxes and my mind rests and releases the tension of being second in line and of being in this place.
He strokes my arm with one hand and the outside of my thigh with the other, and we just sit here for several minutes in total silence. The sun has already set, and I have no idea what time it is. I’m just sitting here in the lap of my Dominus enjoying the moment, however long it lasts.
“Tell me why you feel that you’re not the most important thing in my life, Pussycat,” he says softly, and the words flow easily.
“Because I’m not, Sir,” I reply effortlessly. “Your company is more important. It always has been, and it always will be. Even when you left me and went to Madrid, you took your company with you. When I left and went to Montana, you came home and threw yourself into your company.
“No matter where we go, no matter what vacation we take, there has to be somewhere that you can set up and work. You may spend one day and maybe a night on your boat, but there’s an office on your boat. She tags along with us wherever we go. It’s so second nature to you that you may not even see it, but I do. I see it loud and clear; I know it’s true, and you just have to let me accept it.”
I hate that I have to be more self-sufficient, especially right now. I want to be the center of attention; I want everyone around me to have the sole purpose of making me forget why the fuck I’m here, but the truth is that the world doesn’t rise and set on me even when I feel like shit and I want it to be that way. And in this case, GEH will always be in the shadows, or maybe I’m in the shadows of GEH. Either way, she’s a bedfellow; it’s a reality and I just have to deal with it.
“I hate that you call it she,” he admits.
“Don’t you?” I ask, and I don’t need an answer. I already know.
“It’s like I’m cheating on you and that’s not what’s going on.”
No, it’s not. She’s the wife. I’m the mistress. She was here first and she got your name before I did. It’s a fact of life, and I’m not trying to change it anymore.
“Tell me what you’re thinking,” he beseeches gently.
“You’re not cheating on me,” I reply truthfully, “but I know my place. It’s just that at this moment, I don’t like it.”
“This is going to become a real point of contention for us,” he laments. “Yes, my company needs me, but I need you…”
“And I need you,” I reply, “I just have to learn how to share.”
He sighs. He doesn’t understand that I’ve accepted my fate even if I don’t entirely like it. I can live with it… sometimes. Other times, I just have to tolerate it. As much as he loves his company and he devotes time to it, he can’t admit the fact that it has first pecking order over me. I don’t want to say me and the twins, because I would hate to think anything has pecking order over his children. So, I choose to be willfully blind to that little detail.
“I’m going to prove to you that’s not true,” he says. “I’m not going to be that guy where you think my company is my life and you’re not.”
I know that he’ll try not to be that guy, but when his baby bellows, he’s going to come running, as well he should.
“You don’t have to prove anything to me,” I say, growing weary of the conversation. “May I get a glass of wine, please, Sir?” I ask.
“No,” he replies. “You had two vodka rocks already. You’ll have a hangover.”
He’s right, but I’ll need something if we’re going to continue this conversation and since he’s said that I can’t have a drink, I’m not going to continue this conversation.
I fall silent and allow him to talk about how he’s going to reprioritize his life. I hope that doesn’t mean that he’ll neglect GEH in an attempt to prove a point to me. It’s like I said, I’ve accepted my fate and I know my place, and more often than not, I can deal with it. It’s during those times that I need him that I have a hard time swallowing that pill.
“There was an unexpected situation that would seriously take too long to explain…”
There’s always and unexpected situation that would seriously take too long to explain. It’s the nature of the beast.
“It was time-sensitive, but I had to take the time to listen to what was going on. It was so urgent that neither of them bothered to email me. They couldn’t call, because they knew that I was most likely in court. So, they texted me… both of them! The decision had to be made quickly.
“There were two options—both options were extremely costly, but each option had its own set of circumstances and consequences. Ros and Lorenz were divided on which option was the best, and honestly, for good reason. No matter which option we took, there were huge opportunity costs involved, some of them involving tangling with foreign governments. I’m not trying to keep you out of the loop, but again, this is way too detailed to have to explain again…”
He didn’t have to explain that part. If there was a situation that had three members of the executive team with their level of experience at odds on how to solve it, that information was way over my head anyway.
“I had to be the deciding factor. There was no other way, and even I had a hard time deciding which course of action would be best. Even the time that I took to get back to them was critical.”
“Did you make a decision?” I ask.
“Yes, and even now, I’m not sure that I made the right one,” he admits, “but we had to do something. We couldn’t wait any longer. Under any other circumstances…” He trails off. “It was a difficult decision for me,” he admits. “I know it was impossible for them.”
I sit on his lap for a few more moments, reviewing yet another reason in my mind to put on my big girl pants.
“I’d like to take a bath now, Sir,” I request. I need to soak or something.
“You don’t want to sit with me anymore?” he asks. I don’t want to continue this conversation. I get it. I really do.
“I want to boil off this day,” I say, imagining that huge bath full of lemon grass or vanilla, maybe a candle or two…
“Okay,” he says, patting me on the thigh. I stand from his lap and head to the en suite and the huge sunken tub.
A/N: Pictures of places, cars, fashion, etc., can be found at https://www.pinterest.com/ladeeceo/grey-continued-misadventuresseason-v/
Pictures from the trip to Las Vegas can be found at https://www.pinterest.com/ladeeceo/grey-continued-las-vegas/
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.