Fifty Shades Freed Extended Version

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It’s after one in the morning when I go to bed. Staring at the ceiling, I’m tired, relaxed, but also excited, anticipating what the week will bring. I hope to have a new project: Miss Anastasia Steele.

MY FEET POUND THE sidewalk on Main Street as I run toward the river. It’s 6:35 in the morning and the sun’s rays are shimmering through the high-rise buildings. The sidewalk trees are newly green with spring leaves; the air is clean, the traffic quiet. I’ve slept well. “O Fortuna” from Orff’s Carmina Burana is blaring in my ears. Today the streets are paved with possibility.

Will she respond to my e-mail?

It’s too early, far too early for any response, but feeling lighter than I have for weeks, I run past the statue of the elk and toward the Willamette.

BY 7:45 I’M IN front of my laptop, having showered and ordered breakfast. I e-mail Andrea to let her know I’ll be working from Portland for the week and to ask her to reschedule any meetings so that they can take place by phone or videoconference. I e-mail Gail to let her know I won’t be home until Thursday evening at the earliest. Then I work through my inbox and find among other things a proposal for a joint venture with a shipyard in Taiwan. I forward it to Ros to add to the agenda of items we need to discuss.

Then I turn to my other outstanding matter: Elena. She’s texted me a couple of times over the weekend and I’ve not replied.

* * *

From: Christian Grey

Subject: The Weekend

Date: May 23 2011 08:15

To: Elena Lincoln

Good morning, Elena.

Sorry not to get back to you. I’ve been busy all weekend, and I’ll be in Portland all this week. I don’t know about next weekend, either, but if I’m free, I’ll let you know.

Latest results for the beauty business look promising.

Good going, Ma’am…

Best

C

Christian Grey

CEO, Grey Enterprises Holdings, Inc.

I press send, wondering again what Elena would make of Ana…and vice versa. There’s a ping from my laptop as a new e-mail arrives.

It’s from Ana.

* * *

From: Anastasia Steele

Subject: Your New Computer (on loan)

Date: May 23 2011 08:20

To: Christian Grey

I slept very well, thank you-for some strange reason-Sir.

I understood that this computer was on loan, ergo not mine.

Ana

“Sir” with a capital S; the girl has been reading, and possibly researching. And she’s still talking to me. I grin stupidly at the e-mail. This is good news. Though she is also telling me that she doesn’t want the computer.

Well, that’s frustrating.

I shake my head, amused.

* * *

From: Christian Grey

Subject: Your New Computer (on loan)

Date: May 23 2011 08:22

To: Anastasia Steele

The computer is on loan. Indefinitely, Miss Steele.

I note from your tone that you have read the documentation I gave you.

Do you have any questions so far?

Christian Grey

CEO, Grey Enterprises Holdings, Inc.

I hit send. How long will it be before she responds? I resume reading my e-mail as a distraction while I wait for her reply. There’s an executive summary from Fred, the head of my telecom division, about the development of our solar-powered tablet-one of my pet projects. It’s ambitious but few of my business ventures matter more than this one and I’m excited about it. Bringing affordable first world technology to the third world is something I’m determined to do.

There’s a ping from my computer.

Another e-mail from Miss Steele.

* * *

From: Anastasia Steele

Subject: Inquiring Minds

Date: May 23 2011 08:25

To: Christian Grey

I have many questions, but not suitable for e-mail, and some of us have to work for a living.

I do not want or need a computer indefinitely.

Until later, good day. Sir.

Ana

The tone of her e-mail makes me smile, but it seems she’s off to work, so this might be the last one for a while. Her reluctance to accept the damned computer is annoying. But I suppose it shows she’s not acquisitive. She’s no gold digger-rare among the women I’ve known…yet Leila was the same.

“Sir, I am not deserving of this beautiful dress.”

“You are. Take it. And I’ll not hear another word on this. Understand?”

“Yes, Master.”

“Good. And the style will suit you.”

Ah, Leila. She was a good submissive, but she became too attached and I was the wrong man. Fortunately, that wasn’t for long. She’s married now and happy. I turn my attention back to Ana’s e-mail and reread.

“Some of us have to work for a living.”

The sassy wench is implying I don’t do any work.

Well to hell with that!

I spy Fred’s rather dry summary report open on my desktop and decide to set the record straight with Ana.

* * *

From: Christian Grey

Subject: Your New Computer (again on loan)

Date: May 23 2011 08:26

To: Anastasia Steele

Laters, baby.

P.S.: I work for a living, too.

Christian Grey

CEO, Grey Enterprises Holdings, Inc.

I find it impossible to concentrate on my work, waiting for the telltale ping to announce a new e-mail from Ana. When it comes, I look up immediately-but it’s from Elena. And I’m surprised by my disappointment.

* * *

From: Elena Lincoln

Subject: The Weekend

Date: May 23 2011 08:33

To: Christian Grey

Christian, you work too hard. What’s in Portland? Work?

Ex

ELENA LINCOLN

ESCLAVA

For The Beauty That Is You™

Do I tell her? If I do, she’ll call immediately with questions, and I’m not ready to divulge my weekend experiences yet. I type her a quick e-mail saying it’s work, and get back to my reading.

Andrea calls me at nine and we run through my schedule. As I’m in Portland, I ask her to set up a meeting with the president and the AVP of economic development at WSU, to discuss the soil science project we’ve set up and their need for additional funding in the next fiscal year. She agrees to cancel all my social engagements this week, and then connects me through to my first videoconference of the day.

AT 3:00 I’M PORING over some tablet design schematics that Barney has sent me when I’m disturbed by a knock at my door. The interruption is annoying but for a moment I hope that it’s Miss Steele. It’s Taylor.

“Hello.” I hope my voice doesn’t reveal my disappointment.

“I have your clothes, Mr. Grey,” he says politely.

“Come in. Can you hang them in the closet? I’m expecting my next conference call.”

“Certainly, sir.” He hurries into the bedroom, carrying a couple of suit bags and a duffel.

When he returns I’m still waiting for my call.

“Taylor, I don’t think I’m going to need you for the next couple of days. Why don’t you take the time to see your daughter?”

“That’s very good of you, sir, but her mother and I-” He stops, embarrassed.

“Ah. Like that, is it?” I ask.

He nods. “Yes, sir. It will take some negotiating.”

“Okay. Would Wednesday be better?”

“I’ll ask. Thank you, sir.”

“Anything I can do to help?”

“You do enough, sir.”

He doesn’t want to talk about this. “Okay. I think I’m going to need a printer-can you arrange it?”

“Yes, sir.” He nods. As he leaves, closing the door softly behind him, I frown. I hope his ex-wife isn’t giving him grief. I pay for his daughter’s schooling as another incentive for him to stay in my employment; he’s a good man, and I don’t want to lose him. The phone rings-it’s my conference call with Ros and Senator Blandino.

MY LAST CALL WRAPS up at 5:20. Stretching in my chair, I think about how productive I’ve been today. It’s amazing how much more I get done when I’m not in the office. Only a couple of reports to read and I’m finished for the day. As I look out the window at the early-evening sky, my mind strays to a certain potential submissive.

I wonder how her day at Clayton’s has been, pricing cable ties and measuring out lengths of rope. I hope one day I’ll get to use them on her. The thought conjures images of her tethered in my playroom. I dwell on this for a moment…then quickly send her an e-mail. All this waiting, working, and e-mailing is making me restless. I know how I’d like to release this pent-up energy, but I have to settle for a run.

* * *

From: Christian Grey

Subject: Working for a Living

Date: May 23 2011 17:24

To: Anastasia Steele

Dear Miss Steele,

I do hope you had a good day at work.

Christian Grey

CEO, Grey Enterprises Holdings, Inc.

I change back into my running gear. Taylor has brought me two more pairs of sweatpants. I’m sure that’s Gail’s doing. As I head toward the door I check my e-mail. She’s replied.

* * *

From: Anastasia Steele

Subject: Working for a Living

Date: May 23 2011 17:48

To: Christian Grey

Sir… I had a very good day at work.

Thank you.

Ana

But she hasn’t done her homework. I e-mail her back.

* * *

From: Christian Grey

Subject: Do the Work!

Date: May 23 2011 17:50

To: Anastasia Steele

Miss Steele,

Delighted you had a good day.

While you are e-mailing, you are not researching.

Christian Grey

CEO, Grey Enterprises Holdings, Inc.

And rather than leave the room, I wait for her reply. She doesn’t keep me waiting long.

* * *

From: Anastasia Steele

Subject: Nuisance

Date: May 23 2011 17:53

To: Christian Grey

Mr. Grey, stop e-mailing me, and I can start my assignment.

I’d like another A.

Ana

I laugh out loud. Yes. That A was something else. Closing my eyes, I see and feel her mouth around my cock once more.

Fuck.

Bringing my errant body to heel, I press send on my reply, and wait.

* * *

From: Christian Grey

Subject: Impatient

Date: May 23 2011 17:55

To: Anastasia Steele

Miss Steele,

Stop e-mailing me-and do your assignment.

I’d like to award another A.

The first one was so well deserved. 😉

Christian Grey

CEO, Grey Enterprises Holdings, Inc.

Her response is not as immediate, and feeling a little crestfallen, I turn away and decide to go on my run. But as I open the door the ping from my inbox pulls me back.

* * *

From: Anastasia Steele

Subject: Internet Research

Date: May 23 2011 17:59

To: Christian Grey

Mr. Grey,

What would you suggest I put into a search engine?

Ana

Shit! Why didn’t I think about this? I could have given her some books. Numerous websites spring to mind-but I don’t want to frighten her off.

Perhaps she should start with the most vanilla…

* * *

From: Christian Grey

Subject: Internet Research

Date: May 23 2011 18:02

To: Anastasia Steele

Miss Steele,

Always start with Wikipedia.

No more e-mails unless you have questions.

Understood?

Christian Grey

CEO, Grey Enterprises Holdings, Inc.

I get up from my desk, thinking she won’t respond, but as usual she surprises me and does. I can’t resist.

* * *

From: Anastasia Steele

Subject: Bossy!

Date: May 23 2011 18:04

To: Christian Grey

Yes…Sir.

You are so bossy.

Ana

Damned right, baby.

* * *

From: Christian Grey

Subject: In Control

Date: May 23 2011 18:06

To: Anastasia Steele

Anastasia, you have no idea.

Well, maybe an inkling now.

Do the work.

Christian Grey

CEO, Grey Enterprises Holdings, Inc.

Show some restraint, Grey. Before she can distract me again, I’m out the door. With the Foo Fighters blaring in my ears I run to the river; I’ve seen the Willamette at dawn, now I want to see it at dusk. It’s a fine evening: couples are walking by the riverside, some sitting on the grass, and a few tourists are cycling up and down the concourse. I avoid them, the music blasting in my ears.

Miss Steele has questions. She is still in the game-this is not a “no.” Our e-mail exchange has given me hope. As I run under the Hawthorne Bridge I reflect on how at ease she is with the written word, more so than when she’s speaking. Maybe this is her preferred medium of expression. Well, she has been studying English literature. I’m hoping that by the time I get back there’ll be another e-mail, maybe with questions, maybe with some more of her sassy banter.

Yeah. That’s something to look forward to.

As I sprint down Main Street I dare to hope that she’ll accept my proposition. The thought is exciting, invigorating even, and I pick up my pace, sprinting back to The Heathman.

IT’S 8:15 WHEN I sit back in my dining chair. I’ve eaten the wild Oregon salmon for dinner, courtesy of Miss Dark, Dark Eyes again, and I still have half a glass of Sancerre to finish. My laptop is open and powered up, should any important e-mails arrive. I pick up the report that I’ve printed out, on the brownfield sites in Detroit. “It would have to be Detroit,” I grumble out loud, and start to read.

A few minutes later, I hear a ping.

It’s an e-mail with “Shocked of WSUV” written in the subject line. The heading makes me sit up.

* * *

From: Anastasia Steele

Subject: Shocked of WSUV

Date: May 23 2011 20:33

To: Christian Grey

Okay, I’ve seen enough.

It was nice knowing you.

Ana

Shit!

I read it again.

Fuck.

It’s a “no.” I stare at the screen in disbelief.

That’s it?

No discussion?

Nothing.

Just “It was nice knowing you”?

What. The. Fuck.

I sit back in my chair, dumbfounded.

Nice?

Nice.

NICE.

She thought it was more than nice when her head was thrown back as she came.

Don’t be so hasty, Grey.

Maybe it’s a joke?

Some joke!

I pull my laptop toward me to write a reply.

* * *

From: Christian Grey

Subject: NICE?

Date: May 23 2011

To: Anastasia Steele

But as I stare at the screen, my fingers hovering over the keys, I can’t think of what to say.

How could she dismiss me so easily?

Her first fuck.

Get it together, Grey. What are your options? Maybe I should pay her a visit, just to make sure it’s a “no.” Maybe I can persuade her otherwise. I certainly don’t know what to say to this e-mail. Perhaps she’s looked at some particularly hardcore sites. Why didn’t I give her a few books? I don’t believe this. She needs to look me in the eye and say no.

Yep. I rub my chin as I formulate a plan, and moments later I’m in my closet, retrieving my tie.

That tie.

This deal isn’t dead yet. From my messenger bag I take some condoms and slide them into the back pocket of my pants, then grab my jacket and a bottle of white wine from the minibar. Damn, it’s a chardonnay-but it will have to do. Snatching my room key, I close the door and head toward the elevator to collect my car from the valet.

AS I PULL UP in the R8 outside the apartment she shares with Kavanagh, I wonder if this is a wise move. I’ve never visited any of my previous submissives at their homes-they always came to me. I’m pushing all the boundaries that I’ve set for myself. Opening the door of the car and climbing out, I’m uneasy; it’s reckless and too presumptuous of me to come here. Then again, I’ve already been here twice, though for only a few minutes. If she does agree, I’ll have to manage her expectations. This won’t happen again.

Getting ahead of yourself, Grey.

You’re here because you think it’s a “no.”

Kavanagh answers when I knock at the door. She’s surprised to see me. “Hi, Christian. Ana didn’t say you were coming over.” She stands aside to let me enter. “She’s in her room. I’ll call her.”

“No. I’d like to surprise her.” I give her my most earnest and endearing look and in response she blinks a couple of times. Whoa. That was easy. Who would have thought? How gratifying. “Where’s her room?”

“Through there, the first door.” She points to a door off the empty living room.

“Thanks.”

Leaving my jacket and the chilled wine on one of the packing crates, I open the door to find a small hallway with a couple of rooms off it. I assume one is a bathroom, so I knock on the other door. After a beat, I open it and there’s Ana, sitting at a small desk, reading what looks like the contract. She has her earbuds in as she idly drums her fingers to an unheard beat. Standing there for a moment, I watch her. Her face is scrunched in concentration; her hair is braided and she’s wearing sweats. Perhaps she’s been for a run this evening…perhaps she’s suffering from excess energy, too. The thought is pleasing. Her room is small, neat, and girlish: all whites, creams, and baby blues, and bathed in the soft glow of her bedside lamp. It’s also a little empty, but I spy a closed packing crate with Ana’s room scrawled on the top. At least she has a double bed-with a white wrought-iron bedstead. Yes. That has possibilities.

Ana suddenly jumps, startled by my presence.

Yes. I’m here because of your e-mail.

She pulls out her earbuds and the sound of tinny music fills the silence between us.

“Good evening, Anastasia.”

She stares at me dumbfounded, her eyes widening.

“I felt that your e-mail warranted a reply in person.” I try to keep my voice neutral. Her mouth opens and closes, but she remains mute.

Miss Steele is speechless. This I like. “May I sit?”

She nods, continuing to stare in disbelief as I perch on her bed.

“I wondered what your bedroom would look like,” I offer as an icebreaker, though chitchat is not my area of expertise. She scans her room as if seeing it for the first time. “It’s very serene and peaceful in here,” I add, though I feel anything but serene or peaceful right now. I want to know why she’s said no to my proposal with no discussion whatsoever.

“How…?” she whispers, but she stops, her disbelief still evident in her quiet tone.

“I’m still at The Heathman.” She knows this.

“Would you like a drink?” she squeaks.

“No thank you, Anastasia.” Good. She’s found her manners. But I want to get on with the business at hand: her alarming e-mail. “So, it was nice knowing me?” I emphasize the word that offends me most in that sentence.

Nice? Really?

She examines her hands in her lap, her fingers nervously tapping against her thighs. “I thought you’d reply by e-mail,” she says, her voice as small as her room.

“Are you biting your lower lip deliberately?” I inquire, my voice sterner than I’d intended.

“I wasn’t aware I was biting my lip,” she whispers, her face pale.

We gaze at each other.

And the air almost crackles between us.

Fuck.

Can’t you feel this, Ana? This tension. This attraction. My breathing shallows as I watch her pupils dilate. Slowly, deliberately, I reach for her hair and gently tug on the elastic, freeing one of her braids. She watches me, captivated, her eyes never leaving mine. I loosen her second braid.

“So you decided on some exercise?” My fingers trace the soft shell of her ear. With great care, I tug and squeeze the plump skin of her earlobe. She’s not wearing earrings, though she does have pierced ears. I wonder what a diamond would look like twinkling there. I ask her why she’s been exercising, keeping my voice low. Her breathing quickens.

“I needed time to think,” she says.

“Think about what, Anastasia?”

“You.”

“And you decided that it was nice knowing me? Do you mean knowing me in the biblical sense?”

Her cheeks pink. “I didn’t think you were familiar with the Bible.”

“I went to Sunday school, Anastasia. It taught me a great deal.”

Catechism. Guilt. And that God abandoned me long ago.

“I don’t remember reading about nipple clamps in the Bible. Perhaps you were taught from a modern translation,” she goads me, her eyes shining and provocative.

Oh, that smart mouth.

“Well, I thought I should come and remind you how nice it was knowing me.” The challenge is there in my voice, and now between us. Her mouth drops open in surprise, but I glide my fingers to her chin and coax it closed. “What do you say to that, Miss Steele?” I whisper, as we stare at each other.

Suddenly she launches herself at me.

Shit.

Somehow I grab her arms before she can touch me, and twist so that she lands on the bed, beneath me, and I have her arms stretched out above her head. Turning her face to mine, I kiss her, hard, my tongue exploring and reclaiming her. Her body rises in response as she kisses me back with equal ardor.

Oh, Ana. What you do to me.

Once she’s squirming for more, I stop and gaze down at her. It’s time for plan B.

“Trust me?” I ask, when her eyelids flutter open.

She nods enthusiastically. From the back pocket of my pants I extract the tie so she can see it, then sit astride her and, taking both of her offered wrists, bind her to one of the iron spindles of her bedstead.

She wriggles beneath me, testing her bindings, but the tie holds fast. She’s not escaping. “That’s better.” I smile with relief because I have her where I want her. Now to undress her.

Grabbing her right foot, I start to undo her sneakers.

“No,” she grumbles with embarrassment, trying to withdraw her foot, and I know it’s because she’s been running and she doesn’t want me to remove her shoes. Does she think perspiration would put me off?

Sweetheart!

“If you struggle, I’ll tie your feet, too. If you make a noise, Anastasia, I will gag you. Keep quiet. Katherine is probably outside listening right now.”

She stops. And I know that my instincts are right. She’s worried about her feet. When will she understand that none of that stuff bothers me?

Quickly I remove her shoes, socks, and sweatpants. Then shift her so she’s stretched out and lying on her sheets, and not that dainty, homemade quilt. We’re going to make a mess.

Stop biting that fucking lip.

I brush my finger over her mouth as a carnal warning. She purses her lips in the semblance of a kiss, prompting my smile. She’s a beautiful, sensual creature.

Now that she’s where I want her, I take my shoes and socks off, undo the top button of my pants, and remove my shirt. She doesn’t take her eyes off me.

“I think you’ve seen too much.” I want to keep her guessing, and not knowing what’s coming next. It will be a carnal treat. I’ve not blindfolded her before, so this will count toward her training. That’s if she says yes…

Sitting astride her once more, I grab the hem of her T-shirt and roll it up her body. But rather than taking it off, I leave it rolled over her eyes: an effective blindfold.

She looks fantastic, laid out and bound. “Mmm, this just gets better and better. I’m going to get a drink,” I whisper, and kiss her. She gasps as I climb off the bed. Outside her room, I leave her door slightly ajar and enter the living room to retrieve the bottle of wine.

Kavanagh looks up from where she’s sitting on the sofa, reading, and her eyebrows rise in surprise. Don’t tell me you’ve never seen a shirtless man, Kavanagh, because I won’t believe you. “Kate, where would I find glasses, ice, and a corkscrew?” I ask, ignoring her scandalized expression.

“Um. In the kitchen. I’ll get them for you. Where’s Ana?”

Ah, some concern for her friend. Good.

“She’s a little tied up at the moment, but she wants a drink.” I grab the bottle of chardonnay.

“Oh, I see,” Kavanagh says, and I follow her into the kitchen, where she points to some glasses on the counter. All the glasses are out, I assume to be packed for their move. She hands me a corkscrew and from the fridge she removes a tray of ice and breaks out the ice cubes.

“We still have to pack in here. You know Elliot is helping us move.” Her tone is critical.

“Is he?” I sound uninterested as I open the wine. “Just put the ice in the glasses.” With my chin I indicate two glasses. “It’s a chardonnay. It’ll be more drinkable with the ice.”

“I figured you for a red-wine kind of guy,” she says, when I pour the wine. “Are you going to come and help Ana with the move?” Her eyes flash. She’s challenging me.

Shut her down now, Grey.

“No. I can’t.” My voice is clipped, because she’s pissing me off, trying to make me feel guilty. Her lips thin, and I turn around to leave the kitchen, but not before I catch the disapproval in her face.

Fuck off, Kavanagh.

No way am I going to help. Ana and I don’t have that kind of relationship. Besides, I can’t spare the time.

I return to Ana’s room and shut the door behind me, blotting out Kavanagh and her disdain. Immediately I’m appeased by the sight of the enchanting Ana Steele, breathless and waiting, on her bed. Setting the wine down on her bedside table, I take the foil packet out of my pants and place it beside the wine, then drop my pants and underwear on the floor, freeing my erection.

I take a sip of wine-surprisingly, it’s not bad-and gaze down at Ana. She hasn’t said a word. Her face is turned toward me, her lips parted with anticipation. Taking the glass, I sit astride her once more. “Are you thirsty, Anastasia?”

“Yes,” she whispers.

Taking a sip of wine, I lean down and kiss her, pouring the wine into her mouth. She laps it up, and deep in her throat I hear a faint hum of appreciation.

“More?” I ask.

She nods, smiling, and I oblige.

“Let’s not go too far; we know your capacity for alcohol is limited, Anastasia,” I tease, and her mouth splits in the widest of grins. Leaning down, I let her have another drink from my mouth, and she wriggles beneath me.

“Is this nice?” I ask, as I lay down beside her.

She stills, all seriousness now, but her lips part as she inhales sharply.

I take another swig of wine, this time with two ice cubes. When I kiss her, I push a small shard of ice between her lips, then lay a trail of icy kisses down her sweet-smelling skin from her throat to her navel. There, I place the other shard, and a little wine.

She sucks in a breath.

“Now you have to keep still. If you move, Anastasia, you’ll get wine all over the bed.” My voice is low, and I kiss her again just above her navel. Her hips shift. “Oh no. If you spill the wine, I will punish you, Miss Steele.”

She moans in response and pulls at the tie.

All good things, Ana…

I release each of her breasts from her bra so they’re supported by the underwire cups; her breasts are pert and vulnerable, just how I like them. Slowly I tease them both with my lips.

“How nice is this?” I whisper, and blow gently on one nipple. Her mouth slackens in a silent “Ah.” Taking another piece of ice in my mouth, I slowly trace down her sternum to her nipple, circling a couple of times with the ice. She moans beneath me. Transferring the ice to my fingers, I continue to torture each nipple with cool lips and the remaining ice cube that’s melting in my fingers.

Whining and panting beneath me, she’s tensing but managing to stay still. “If you spill the wine, I won’t let you come,” I warn.

“Oh. Please. Christian. Sir. Please,” she begs.

Oh, to hear her use those words.

There’s hope.

This is not a “no.”

I skim my fingers over her body toward her panties, teasing her soft skin. Suddenly her pelvis flexes, spilling the wine and the now-melted ice from her navel. I move quickly to lap it up, kissing and sucking it off her body.

“Oh dear, Anastasia, you moved. What am I going to do to you?” I slip my fingers into her panties and brush her clitoris as I do.

“Ah!” she whines.

“Oh, baby,” I whisper with reverence. She’s wet. Very wet.

See. See how nice this is?

I push my index and middle finger inside her and she trembles.

“Ready for me so soon,” I murmur, and push my fingers slowly in and out of her, eliciting a long sweet moan. Her pelvis starts lifting to meet my fingers.

Oh, she wants this.

“You are a greedy girl.” My voice is still low and she matches the pace I’m setting as I begin to circle her clitoris with my thumb, teasing and tormenting her.

She cries out, her body bucking beneath me. I want to see her expression, and reaching up with my other hand, I slip her T-shirt off her head. She opens her eyes, blinking in the soft light.

“I want to touch you,” she says, her voice husky and full of need.

“I know,” I breathe against her lips, and kiss her, all the while keeping up the relentless rhythm with my fingers and thumb. She tastes of wine and need and Ana. And she kisses me back with a hunger I’ve not felt in her before. I cradle the top of her head, keeping her in place, and continue to kiss and finger-fuck her. As her legs stiffen, I drop the pace of my hand.

Oh, no, baby. You’re not coming yet.

I do this three more times while kissing her warm, sweet mouth. The fifth time I still my fingers inside her, and I hum soft and slow in her ear, “This is your punishment, so close and yet so far. Is this nice?”

“Please,” she whimpers.

God, I love to hear her beg.

“How shall I fuck you, Anastasia?”

My fingers start again and her legs begin to quiver, and I gentle my hand once more.

“Please,” she breathes again, the word so low I barely hear her.

“What do you want, Anastasia?”

“You…now,” she pleads.

“Shall I fuck you this way, or this way, or this way? There’s an endless choice,” I murmur. Withdrawing my hand, I snatch the condom from the bedside table and kneel up between her legs. Keeping my eyes on hers, I pull her panties off and discard them on the floor. Her eyes are dark, full of promise and longing. They widen as I slowly put the condom on.

“How nice is this?” I ask, as I wrap my fist around my erection.

“I meant it as a joke,” she whimpers.

Joke?

Thank. The. Lord.

All is not lost.

“A joke?” I query, as my fist slides up and down my cock.

“Yes. Please, Christian,” she begs.

“Are you laughing now?”

“No.” Her voice is barely audible, but the little shake of her head tells me all I need to know.

Watching her needing me…I could explode in my hand just looking at her. Grabbing her, I flip her over, keeping her fine, fine ass in the air. It’s too tempting. I slap her cheek, hard, then plunge inside her.

Oh, fuck. She’s so ready.

She tightens around me and cries out as she comes.

Fuck. That’s too quick.

Holding her hips in place, I fuck her, hard, riding through her orgasm. Gritting my teeth, I grind into her, again and again, as she begins to build once more.

Come on, Ana. Again, I will her, pounding on.

She moans and whimpers beneath me, a sheen of sweat appearing on her back.

Her legs begin to quiver.

She’s close.

“Come on, Anastasia, again,” I growl, and by some miracle her orgasm spirals through her body and into mine. Thank fuck. Wordlessly I come, pouring myself into her.

Sweet Lord. I collapse on top of her. That was exhausting.

“How nice was that?” I hiss against her ear as I draw air into my lungs.

As she lies flat on the bed, panting, I pull out of her and remove the wretched condom. I get off the bed and quickly get dressed. When I’m done, I reach down and unfasten my tie, freeing her. Turning over, she stretches her hands and fingers and readjusts her bra. Once I cover her with the comforter I lie down beside her, propped up on my elbow.

“That was really nice,” she says with a mischievous smile.

“There’s that word again.” I smirk at her.

“You don’t like that word?”

“No. It doesn’t do it for me at all.”

“Oh-I don’t know…it seems to have a very beneficial effect on you.”

“I’m a beneficial effect now, am I? Could you wound my ego any further, Miss Steele?”

“I don’t think there’s anything wrong with your ego.” Her frown is fleeting.

“You think?”

Dr. Flynn would have plenty to say about that.

“Why don’t you like to be touched?” she asks, her voice sweet and soft.

“I just don’t.” I kiss her forehead to distract her from this line of questioning. “So, that e-mail was your idea of a joke?”

She gives me a coy look and an apologetic shrug.

“I see. So you are still considering my proposition?”

“Your indecent proposal…yes, I am.”

Well, thank fuck for that.

Our deal is still in play. My relief is palpable; I can almost taste it.

“I have issues, though,” she adds.

“I’d be disappointed if you didn’t.”

“I was going to e-mail them to you, but you kind of interrupted me.”

“Coitus interruptus.”

“See? I knew you had a sense of humor somewhere in there.” The light in her eyes dances with mirth.

“Only certain things are funny, Anastasia. I thought you were saying no-no discussion at all.”

“I don’t know yet. I haven’t made up my mind. Will you collar me?”

Her question surprises me. “You have been doing your research. I don’t know, Anastasia. I’ve never collared anyone.”

“Were you collared?” she asks.

“Yes.”

“By Mrs. Robinson?”

“Mrs. Robinson?” I laugh out loud. Anne Bancroft in The Graduate. “I’ll tell her you said that; she’ll love it.”

“You still talk to her regularly?” Her voice is high-pitched with shock and indignation.

“Yes.” Why’s that such a big deal?

“I see.” Now her voice is clipped. She’s mad? Why? I don’t understand. “So you have someone you can discuss your alternative lifestyle with, but I’m not allowed.” Her tone is petulant, but once again she’s calling me out on my shit.

“I don’t think I’ve ever thought about it like that. Mrs. Robinson is part of that lifestyle. I told you, she’s a good friend now. If you’d like, I can introduce you to one of my former subs. You could talk to her.”

“Is this your idea of a joke?” she demands.

“No, Anastasia.” I’m surprised by her vehemence and shake my head to reinforce my denial. It’s perfectly normal for a submissive to check with exes that their new Dominant knows what he’s doing.

“No-I’ll do this on my own, thank you very much,” she insists, and reaches for her comforter and quilt, pulling them up to her chin.

What? She’s upset?

“Anastasia, I…I didn’t mean to offend you.”

“I’m not offended. I’m appalled.”

“Appalled?”

“I don’t want to talk to one of your ex-girlfriends, slave, sub, whatever you call them.”

Oh.

“Anastasia Steele, are you jealous?” I sound bewildered…because I am. She flushes beet red, and I know I’ve found the root of her problem. How the hell can she be jealous?

Sweetheart, I had a life before you.

A very active life.

“Are you staying?” she snaps.

What? Of course not. “I have a breakfast meeting tomorrow at The Heathman. Besides, I told you, I don’t sleep with girlfriends, slaves, subs, or anyone. Friday and Saturday were exceptions. It won’t happen again.”

She presses her lips together with her stubborn expression. “Well, I’m tired now,” she says.

Fuck.

“Are you kicking me out?”

This is not how this is supposed to go.

“Yes.”

What the hell?

Disarmed again, by Miss Steele. “Well, that’s another first,” I mutter.

Kicked out. I can’t believe it.

“So nothing you want to discuss now? About the contract?” I ask, as an excuse to prolong my stay.

“No,” she grunts. Her petulance is irritating, and were she truly mine, it would not be tolerated.

“God, I’d like to give you a good hiding. You’d feel a lot better, and so would I,” I tell her.

“You can’t say things like that. I haven’t signed anything yet.” Her eyes flash with defiance.

Oh, baby, I can say it. I just can’t do it. Not until you let me. “A man can dream, Anastasia. Wednesday?” I still want this. Why, though, I don’t know; she’s so difficult. I give her a brief kiss.

“Wednesday,” she agrees, and I’m relieved once again. “I’ll see you out,” she adds, her tone softer. “If you give me a minute.” She pushes me off the bed and pulls on her T-shirt. “Please pass me my sweatpants,” she orders, pointing to them.

Wow. Miss Steele can be a bossy little thing.

“Yes, ma’am,” I quip, knowing that she won’t get the reference. But she narrows her eyes. She knows I’m making fun of her, but she says nothing as she slips her pants on.

Feeling a little bemused at the prospect of being tossed out onto the street, I follow her through the living room to the front door.

When was the last time this happened?

Never.

She opens the door, but she’s staring down at her hands.

What is going on here?

“You okay?” I ask, and brush her lower lip with my thumb. Perhaps she doesn’t want me to go-or perhaps she can’t wait for me to leave?

“Yes,” she says, her tone soft and subdued. I’m not sure I believe her.

“Wednesday,” I remind her. I’ll see her then. Bending down, I kiss her, and she closes her eyes. And I don’t want to go. Not with her uncertainty on my mind. I hold her head and deepen the kiss and she responds, surrendering her mouth to me.

Oh, baby, don’t give up on me. Give it a try.

She grasps my arms, kissing me back, and I don’t want to stop. She’s intoxicating and the darkness is quiet, calmed by the young woman in front of me. Reluctantly, I pull back and lean my forehead against hers.

She’s breathless, like me. “Anastasia, what are you doing to me?”

“I could say the same to you,” she whispers.

I know I have to leave. She has me in a tailspin, and I don’t know why. I kiss her forehead and walk down the path toward the R8. She stands watching me from the doorway. She hasn’t gone in. I smile, pleased that she’s still watching as I climb into the car.

When I look back, she’s gone.

Shit. What just happened? No wave good-bye?

I start the car and begin the drive back to Portland, analyzing what’s taken place between us.

She e-mailed me.

I went to her.

We fucked.

She threw me out before I was ready to leave.

For the first time-well, maybe not the first time-I feel a little used, for sex. It’s a disturbing feeling that reminds me of my time with Elena.

Hell! Miss Steele is topping from the bottom, and she doesn’t even know it. And fool that I am, I’m letting her.

I have to turn this around. This soft-sell approach is messing with my head.

But I want her. I need her to sign.

Is it just the chase? Is that what’s turning me on? Or is it her?

Fuck, I don’t know. But I hope to find out more on Wednesday. And on a positive note, that was one hell of a nice way to spend an evening. I smirk in the rearview mirror and pull into the garage at the hotel.

When I’m back in my room I sit down at my laptop.

Focus on what you want, where you want to be. Isn’t that what Flynn is always harassing me about, his solution-based shit?

* * *

From: Christian Grey

Subject: This Evening

Date: May 23 2011 23:16

To: Anastasia Steele

Miss Steele,

I look forward to receiving your notes on the contract.

Until then, sleep well, baby.

Christian Grey

CEO, Grey Enterprises Holdings, Inc.

And I want to add, Thank you for another diverting evening… but that seems a little over the top. Pushing my laptop aside because Ana will probably be asleep, I pick up the Detroit report and continue reading.

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Fifty Shades Freed Extended Version
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