11 June 2011

Bellevue, Washington

"A successful man is one who makes more money than his wife can spend. A successful woman is one who can find such a man."

-Lana Turner

This quote has been in the hallway of my house since I can remember. It has proved true with my parents and all I can say is that I want to be able to find that for myself when the time comes who knows maybe it will be in the next 10 years or so or maybe not, either way I want what my parents have and I won't settle for anything less, could that mean that I'm setting myself up for disappointment? Quite possibly but when you see what love can really be like why not set your heart on it.

"Annie you need to get ready for the Charity Gala at the Grey's tonight, you know how much your mother and I hate to be late…" Daddy's voice comes from behind me in the hallway as I turn and smile at him caught yet again reading the quote, I get caught doing that nearly every day but it's what happens when you love to read, you read anything, even if you've read it a million times before. Not that I actually have to read it because it's engrained into my brain by now after seeing for the last 18 years or so and being able to read it by myself as opposed to my Mom reading it to me.

"Of course Daddy…" I say kissing his cheek before heading up to my room. Who am I kidding I'm so nervous about going to this gala. This is the first time I get to go and I don't know that many people. I've been out of Bellevue attending Georgetown University majoring in English Literature. After graduating I moved back home and have been here for a little over two weeks now. I couldn't believe that I was invited tonight I told my parents to go without me but they said that the Grey's insisted that we all go as a family and that it would be bad manners if I didn't go with them. Mom organised a dress for me so that I would have something to wear and I haven't seen it yet considering that I didn't really want to go I didn't want to see the dress and then change my mind. I'm still really not wanting to go as I don't really know anyone anymore, after high school I left for college and haven't been back since, only a week here and there at holidays and truth be told I've missed this place. I surprised my parents by turning up at home and they were happy to see me.

If I'm being completely honest with myself I can't wait to catch up with Elliot, Mia and Christian, the fact that they were the closest home from ours meant that we lived more or less at each other's houses. Of course I was raised right and I am polite just like I was taught but it's easy to get caught up in that sibling playfulness that they all seem to have with each other. Of course it doesn't bother me as I have siblings of my own, 2 sisters and a brother, one older sister by a year and then the other two are younger than me so this place is always busy and I couldn't be more happier to have siblings, I couldn't imagine my life without them.

Frankie Angel Steele was born 8th May 1988 and is named after our biological father Frank Lambert, of course though Ray is the only father that I have really ever known, Frankie remembers a little about him but otherwise he is our father for all intents and purposes. After Ray and Mom married he officially adopted us and then ad time went one he and Mom had their own children together, but it makes no difference to us they are our brother and sister and we love them whole heartedly.

Clarissa Belle is 16, born 30th November 1995 and she is so much like me that it's weird considering that Ray is her actual father. Justyce Daniel is more like a twin to me than anything even though we aren't actually twins, he was born 29th June of 1990 and have been so close that when I left for college he didn't speak to me for close to 6 months because he thought that I was doing it to get away from him when in reality I just wanted to get out of Bellevue and study without the pressures of coming from wealth and the added pressure of being compared to the Grey children, well anyone in Bellevue actually, of course while away at Georgetown I never kept up with what was happening because I was too focused on my studies and interning at the Georgetown University Press.

Justyce was out with Mia at some event for the hospital that Grace works at when I arrived so he wasn't here. I guess I shouldn't have been surprised that they would end up together; he pretty much followed her around and did everything he could for her whenever we all hung out together it was kind of funny to watch. But knowing my brother the way that I do, I don't think they'll last. He tends to check out every girl and I've caught him kissing other girls but I never knew that he and Mia were official. Frankie was in Australia doing some landscape photography for National Geographic and she flew back in last night because she didn't want to miss catching up with me before she had to fly to Paris to do a wedding photo shoot for Vanity Fair and I couldn't be more excited to see her I miss all my family when I don't see them every day like I use to.

Clarissa was out at a friend's sweet 16th so of course she was ecstatic when she came home the next day and it was a mile a minute with questions about everything she could ask me and I had a headache that night it was like I hadn't even had a second to myself except when we were having dinner and going for a swim in our pool in the back yard. She is of course too young to attend this event tonight and it makes me sad but I can't wait until she can attend it because I know that she will enjoy it just as much as Frankie and our Mother does, I can't say that I I've ever been the one for expensive dresses and hair and makeup but I did grow up around so I guess tonight I have to at least make an effort to look the part of the Steele family.

Once in my room I went to my ensuite and did my hair into a nice, simple side up do with side fringe to the left side of my face with simple makeup bronze eye shadow over my eyes with mascara and blue trim on the bottom above my eyelashes to the side of my eye and underneath my other eyelashes creating a small winged eye look and I think that I look pretty good for someone who doesn't normally like to wear makeup so now to see what kind of dress my Mom has gotten me.

I pull the garment bag out of my wardrobe and unzip it laying it down on my bed and I nearly could throw a fit, she got ME a PINK dress…Me in pink really? I haven't worn pink since I was ten and it doesn't match my makeup, it is full length and strapless which is fine but it has a ruffle on it, not even a nice one in my opinion but what really puts me off is that it is a HOT PINK dress…there is no way in hell that I will be stepping out of this house let alone into the Grey's in this dress…I look around my room and dash into my wardrobe trying to find something but there is nothing that is long enough or elegant enough for this Gala. What am I going to do now? I can't go naked and I definitely can't go in that thing.

"What's wrong you look like you're about to pass out?" my brothers voice comes from behind me and I grab my towel to make sure that it doesn't fall down.

"Did you see this dress that Mom got? I'm going to look ridiculous if I have to wear that, for one it will make me look washed out and two when was the last time you saw me in pink?" I must be staring hard at him pulling a pissed face because he is smirking his ass off at me.

"What? You think this is funny?" I am starting to get agitated.

"Ban-Ban come on this is Mom we're talking about she still sees you as her little girl in pink dresses and tiara's and everything girlie you should know by now that she would never in want you anything else…" the little fucker is laughing at me, my own brother and this is really not the time.

"But I will be happy to give you your welcome home present if you want, it might be just what you need tonight…now I know I'm just a guy and that I don't know a lot about 'girly' stuff when I saw it on the display dummy I thought that it would be perfect for you…" he pushes off my door frame and pulls a box from behind him.

"You didn't have to get me anything Ty-Ty I'm glad to be home. But thank you none the less, can I open it?"I look at him grinning okay so when it comes to gifts I am very much a girl, I like presents but not over the top ones, thoughtful ones are different. I'm not entirely sure how but they are…at least to me anyway.

"Well I hope you will…I need to get going, I'm meeting up at the Grey's with Mia, but if Mom gets mad just tell her that I brought it and that you're more afraid of me than you are of her. You will look amazing sis…see you in a bit…" he kisses my head and then leaves closing the door behind him. I look down at the box now resting on the edge of my bed and see that there's a note attached and it reads:

To my other half, my Sister Ban-Ban,

I'm so glad that you are back and that we can hang out more, I saw the dress that Mom got and just knew that I had to rescue you from total social suicide, so hopefully this dress is to your liking and you won't feel to exposed at such a formal event, can't wait to see you knock the guys out of the park in this, you deserve to find happiness sis and if this helps well then you're welcome.

Love you now and Always,

Ty-Ty xxx

I have to roll my eyes at my brothers note, he knows more than anyone how I hate being the centre of attention at anything let alone something like this but I can never fault him for his tastes, from a distance with the way he talks about clothes and designers you would think that he was gay but I know that is the furthest from the truth I can't even count the amount of times I rung him while I was studying and interrupted his…what's the right word….conquests I think that might work and now I'm worried for poor Mia, she's the sweetest girl I know and if he fucks her over we are going to have major problems.

I pulled the lid off and open the tissue paper and lift the dress out and I can't help but feel my eyes bug out slightly, he wasn't kidding about feeling exposed, the dress itself is a Tony Bowls design and it's ivory. The back is more or less open and there are open panels on the side and it has a front side slit up to mid-thigh, I just hope that it won't look inappropriate for tonight. I go to the mirror in my wardrobe and slide into the dress. It looks like a halter dress but the sides met in the middle, between my shoulder blades to create a little cross. The beading on the neck piece as well as on my upper back and under the bust which falls to just under my ribs and goes around the back to join to the material and the other strap of beading just above my tailbone at the back with the rest is a bronze/brown colour and it is amazing. It makes me feel beautiful, I just hope that I can do it justice…ironic I know considering who brought it for me but I'm an adult now and I deserve to dress like one and be treated like one so tonight is going to hopefully be the start of something incredible. I find my Paciotti Gold High Heel Platform Sandals right now to run through the list:

Hair CHECK

Makeup CHECK

Dress CHECK

Shoes CHECK

Accessories CHECK

Thankfully I own a lot of gold and darker coloured jewellery and could find something simple to go with this dress. A Baroque Cuff made of Brass plated in 22kt Gold as well as Baroque Earrings made of the same material as well as a shell tear drop attached at the bottom. Both are designed by Eina Ahluwalia who is an Indian designer, all her designs are amazing and I own nearly everything she has ever made. They were some of the first purchases I ever made for myself so they weren't at the high end of the market when it comes to jewellery and such but they are my favourites and I think they suit the dress well so I will wear them and if anyone makes a comment about them well so be it but it will not ruin my night.

"COME ON ANNIE…We're going to be late…" I can hear my father outside my bedroom door.

"Be right there Daddy keep your hair on…I'm ready…" I check myself one more time in the mirror and nod to myself before grabbing my Anya Hindmarch Valorie Gold Glitter Clutch of my bed and make my way down to meet my parents in the foyer of our house.

"What happened to the dress that I brought you Anastasia?" I would roll my eyes at her but then Daddy would get mad at me because it's rude so I just look at her stopping just in front of the door and turn to look at her.

"Mom, for one Justyce brought this for me as a welcome home present and he said that if I didn't wear it he would be mad at me and two, I don't do Pink, of any kind anymore so there was no way I would have worn it anyway…I don't know how many times I'm going to have to tell you, I'm not 8 years old anymore…now are we going or not because we'll be late…" I'm not normal that rude to her but she has to know that she can't treat me like a child anymore and that I will stand up for myself.

I walk out to the car trying not to trip over god I haven't worn heels in nearly 6 months so this is going to be an interesting night, not that it wasn't going to be anyway but who am I kidding, I can't wait to see what happens tonight, maybe I will finally be able to feel part of something instead of feeling like I'm on the outside looking in at what I should actually be doing.

I see my Daddy glare at me as we pull up to the red carpet at the Grey's house and I just look away I know what that means, he is pissed because I disrespected Mom but he won't mention it tonight and I have to play nice. Mom and Daddy get out first and I follow behind them being blinded by flashing lights as we walk towards Mr and Dr Grey.

"Carla, Ray how wonderful to see you. I hope you enjoy your evening…" Dr Grey says to them as she greets them with a hug.

"I'm sure we will thank you Grace, I believe you remember our daughter Anastasia…" Mom says as she moves sideways so that Dr Grey can see me.

"Of course I do, my you have become quite a beautiful young woman Ana and I believe we should be congratulating you on graduating from Georgetown…I hope you enjoy our Gala and will continue to come to our charity events now that you have finished with your studies" she says as she pulls me in for a hug and I can't help but feel beautiful at the comment that she just made.

"Thank you Dr Grey, Mr Grey, of course I would be honoured to help anyway I can for the worthy causes that you support, and maybe I will even join a few myself…"

"Ana dear, how many times have we asked you to call us Grace and Carrick, you spent almost as much time at our house as you did at your own, be like family to us…" she hugs me again and then pulls away.

"If you'll excuse us we have to continue on with our hostess duties, oh and Ana if you're looking for your siblings and my children you may find them in the family room I believe…" she smiles and kisses my cheek as she and Mr Grey head off to greet more guests that have arrived behind us.

"Mom, Dad I'll meet you in time for dinner…" I say kissing their cheeks before heading around to the patio at the back of the Grey house and walking inside through the kitchen to the family room.

"…I can just see Mom's face when she comes down anything but that ugly pink dress that she brought for her I mean really she'd look like the Easter Bunny had thrown up cotton candy all over her…" I can hear Justyce before I see them and I walk in.

"Glad to see that you can have a laugh at my expense little bro…" all their heads turn to look at me and Elliot and Justyce have their mouths open and are staring at me. Well I guess that was the reaction that Justyce was hoping I would get although it feels strange with him staring at me like that.

"Damn Banana Ana…you got hot…" he walks over and picks me up spinning me around as I laugh

"Put me down Lelliot…" I say as I hold onto my dress. "How many times am I going to have to tell you that it's easier for you to just call me Ana…" he places me back on the floor and I just look up at him.

"Plenty but it's not as fun to say plus I wouldn't be me if I did what everybody else was doing…" I know he's right and he's just grinning at me.

I just roll my eyes and look at Frankie. "Hey sis, I missed you…you don't scrub up to bad now do you?" she comes over to me and I can finally see her dress properly. It's a beautiful one shoulder floor length turquoise type coloured dress with beading around and under the bust area and the back of the dress has sheer material from the shoulder to the waist line and has the same type of beading and with her long hair flowing freely she looks beautiful, well she always does but even more so now.

"Thanks sis, I love you too…" she giggles and she hugs me. "You grew up Ban-Ban, guess I'll have to keep an eye on Elliot so he doesn't go from me to you…"

"Not a chance Baby, all Frankie all the time…" Elliot comes over and wraps his arms around her and I can't help but feel so happy for my sister, we didn't always have it easy with Ray not being our biological Dad, we did have times when we got upset and a little less loved by him especially when Justyce was born but we never really told him that we just stayed out of the house for a while and we would come her to the Grey's and just hang out with Elliot, Christian and Mia. Speaking of Mia…

"Ana oh my god you look gorgeous, you have to come into the first dance auction with Frankie, Lily and I. All the guys will be falling over themselves to get a dance with you dressed like that. You would have a blast, it's a lot of fun and it raises a lot of money for Coping together….Please, Pretty Please? I'll owe you…Shopping trip, spa whatever you want…" that's typical Mia for you, guilt trip, over the top enthusiastic and complete grudge holder if you say no to her, that I learnt that she doesn't take no, from anyone. I know that I am totally going to regret saying this but…I can't have poor sweet Mia mad at me.

"Fine but I expect both the shopping and the Spa date and if either of you boys doesn't bid on me then I will be pissed and if I end up dancing with some total weirdo you all owe me…" I say pointing my finger at Elliot and Justyce.

Mia squeals so loud I jump and cover my ears, the things I do to keep people happy. "Okay chill out…" I say to her as I sit down for the first time in what feels like ages. She is wearing a beautiful pale pink full length chiffon dress with under bust embellishment and small ruffle in the middle and her hair short hair is styled with her fringe going to the side over her forehead and she looks stunning, like model stunning and it has me feeling insecure not that that takes much.

"So where's Christian? I thought that you all had to attend these charity things…" truth be told I really couldn't care less where he was since he turned 15 he avoids everyone but more so he avoided me and I couldn't understand why, I mean who could when your five nearly six years old, we use to just sit in silence together and occasionally he'd tell me a joke or something to get me to laugh but he hasn't said much to me these days other than to be polite, especially when we're around our parents not that I have been home much in the last couple of years, he use to hug me when I was little but that just stopped one day when I was about five years old and then eventually whenever I would show up he would disappear and I wouldn't see him again. It was like that for years and then eventually I just started to not come over as much and that pissed Mia off because Frankie was always hanging out with Elliot so she was on her own.

The last thing that I wanted to do was to make Christian uncomfortable in his own home, which is what it seemed like I was doing and the last thing I wanted was to give the Grey's a reason to not have me over anymore so I just took myself out of the equation and then when Christian opened GEH in June 2006, our family was invited to attend and I couldn't very well not show up because that would just look bad but when I was there he was constantly starting at me and I couldn't understand why when he didn't want anything to do with me. Since that night I haven't seen or spoken to him.

If I'm being completely honest with myself which I'm not normally, I miss him, I missed how we would just sit and there wouldn't be any awkwardness, yes even at 6 I understood what awkward meant, because I'd seen it with older children at school and it just never seemed to show up when we were hanging out. I would come to him if I was upset and he would just put his arm around my shoulders as we sat on the pier looking out the water and he just held me against his side. I know that Grace found it strange that he didn't let anyone close to him, except to let Mia or I hug him.

"He had to work late but he will be here, he hates to be late but he wouldn't let Mom down like that so he has to deal with it but we should head outside to our seats they'll be starting any minute now…" Elliot said as he took Frankie by the hand and started to head out towards the patio door and I follow behind Justyce and Mia. I can see that tonight I am going to be the third wheel unless by some miracle Christian shows up but even then I may as well be there by myself because I doubt he'll talk to me at all.

It's about 1 hour into our meal when the first dance auction comes up and Christian still hasn't shown up so I've been stuck at a table with couples…that's 8 couples and then little me all on my own at the other end of the table, so I'm in a piss poor mood and I just want to go home but it's still not socially acceptable and because of the dance auction I can't anyway.

"Alright Ladies, if you can come and join me up here on the stage those of you who are participating and men, come to the front and get those chequebooks out and let's raise some money for Coping Together for Dr and Mr Grey…" Javier Hamilton is man in charge of the auctions tonight and I have to say he makes everything seem funny, not sure if that's because I've had so much champagne or if it's because of his accent…maybe a little bit of both.

There's about 10 of us on stage at the moment waiting to be auctioned off, to me it's a little wrong you know with the whole females sold into slavery crap that goes on all over the world but I will put that aside tonight because I love Grace and Carrick and I want them to have as much money as possible and if I can be a part of it then it's even better.

So far Lily, Frankie, Jenna, Hanna and Kelly have all been auctioned. I'm up next and I know that this is going to be a nightmare, on top of being the third wheel, I've been stared at by nearly every single guy here and they all seem like creeps to me and now I have to stand up here and let one of them dance with me when all I really want to do is go home and crawl into bed with a hot chocolate and watch some sort of reality television so I can escape mine for a while.

"Now we have Ms Anastasia, who loves golfing, playing the cello and speaks Japanese…now gentleman the floor is yours…shall we start with…."

"Twenty Thousand…" Javier is interrupted by a gentleman at the back of the tent not that I'm looking who it is because I'm too busy trying to keep myself from throwing up with being the centre of attention, I've never really been one to be in the centre but dressed like this mixed in with all these people, I feel so out of place for someone who grew up in this place, I guess that's what happens when you withdraw yourself from people.

"Thirty Five…" someone else says.

"Fifty Thousand…" the gentleman bids again. His voice seems familiar to me

"Seventy thousand…" Holy cow this is the highest the auction has gone all night.

"One Hundred and Fifty Thousand…" the gentleman says more determined this time. Damn it why can't I place him.

"Well, Ladies and Gentleman…looks like we have just topped last year's highest bid….We have One hundred and Fifty Thousand….Going one…..Going Twice….Sold…to the gentleman in the very back" Javier smiles as he looks at me.

"You better make it one hell of a dance little lady considering how much your dance just sold for…" he smiles at me as I make my way back down off the stage towards the table that we we're seated at.

"So you're just going to ignore me now?" I spin around and realise why I recognised the voice, my whole body has tingled and it only did that for one person and even when I was little I felt it, I didn't understand it but I felt it.

"Well you've been ignoring me for the last 15 years or so, so I guess I have a lot of time to make up for on that part." I turn around to keep walking as I need to use the ladies room but I can feel him following me.

"You stopped coming around it's not my fault and I tried talking to you 4 years ago and you just brushed me off…" is he serious. Tried talking to me, really?

"You were staring at me not talking…not glancing every now and then, full on staring and every time I use to come around you would just disappear and I would never see you again so I did what you wanted. I left you alone and didn't leave any reason for people to be mad at me for driving you away…" it's taking everything I have not to yell at him, but I don't want to cause a seen it's bad enough that I'm going to have to dance with him in about 20 minutes from now.

"Did what I wanted? I never said that I wanted you to stop coming over. You could have never driven me away…" I ignore him and enter the rest room do my business and then come back out to see him leaning against the tree opposite the luxury porta johns.

"Look let's just get this dance over with and then you never have to worry about me talking to you or being near you or whatever it is that you worry about with me…" I say as I started to head back towards the tent in the Grey's back yard.

"Would you cut the crap…when did you turn into this pity person?" he starts to yell and I turn around and walk back to him.

"I'm not a pity person…you're the one that pulled away from me not the other way around so don't even pull that shit with me Grey, we use to be super close and then when I was six it changed and I remember the day that it happened, I lost my best friend and the one person that I knew would be there for me if I was having problems at home…" I can feel myself getting upset but I don't care I've held this in for so long that maybe it needs to come out.

God he was never this frustrating when I was younger or maybe he was and I just never really paid attention. That could have been because I had a massive crush on him, okay so it was a little school girl crush but still you'd have to be blind not to realise that he was good looking…hell is good looking but right now all I see is red.

"Could all the gentleman and their auction ladies please make their way to the dance floor for the first dance of the evening…." Javier's voice comes over the sound system and I sigh. Great just what I want to be super close to him when all I really want to do is throw champagne at him or hit or something that will make me feel even the slightest bit of relief in this moment.

"Shall we?" he looks at me with a smile offering his arm and I know that he is loving this, me trying to fight him, I was never good at it because he'd stare at me and I'd just break out in giggles but I'm not that naive little girl anymore and I know how to stand up for myself.

"I guess considering you spent an absurd amount of money on a dance with me…" I take his arm because if I was taught anything it was that you have to show respect and that is what I am doing in this moment, being respectful to him in his parent's house, well more on their property.

"It's only absurd if you don't have the money to just throw away but I do…so it's a non-issue" he says as we walk onto the space cleared out for the dancing and he pulls me close to him and there are flashes around the room, I can only assume that knowing my luck that we will make the front page of some paper or magazine tomorrow.

The music starts as he pulls me closer to him and I place my hand on his shoulder and he holds my other hand, this is the first time I've properly danced with him, not to mention the first time I've properly danced with a guy that wasn't my father.

Beauty queen of only eighteen

She had some trouble with herself

He was always there to help her

She always belonged to someone else…

The singer of the band is amazing and he sounds perfect for this song, it's one of my favourite songs not to mention that Adam Levine is totally hot well depends on who you talk to, but he's not really my type. Not that I have a type per say.

"You know just because we're dancing doesn't mean that our conversation is finished…" he whispered in my ear and I would be lying if I say it didn't make me shiver. God what is he doing to me? How can he cause these reactions in me?

"As far as I'm concerned it is, look I don't want to talk about this…" I murmur looking anywhere but at him because I know that if he pushes me I will snap.

It's not always rainbows and butterflies

It's compromise that moves us along, yeah

My heart is full and my door's always open

You come anytime you want, yeah…

"Ana we have to talk about this..." he pulls my face to look at him and to be honest it's hurting a little I can tell that he's frustrated but I really couldn't care less, he treated me like shit for ages and it's not going to change just like that because he thinks that he can control me.

"No you want to talk about this and I don't therefore right now we don't have to do anything except finish this dance and then I can go home…" I pull my face away from him and look for the closet exit for the second the dance is over after grabbing my bag from the table.

I know where you hide alone in your car

Know all of the things that make you who you are

I know that goodbye means nothing at all

Comes back and begs me to catch her every time she falls…

Christian is singing in my ear softly, I'm not sure if it's intentional or not but it reminds me of when I was little and he would sing to me to make me feel better. Right in this moment I'm not sure how to feel I want to feel angry but when he sings it just makes everything seem better.

Look for the girl with the broken smile

Ask her if she wants to stay awhile

And she will be loved

And she will be loved

And she will be loved

And she will be loved…

I need to get out of here and soon, being this close to him is messing with my head and I hate it, there is so much that I want and need to say to him but I can't without getting angry and upset and tonight is really not the night to do all of this. Maybe if I can just get out of this tent and into the night air completely I won't feel so claustrophobic.

I don't mind spending every day

Out on your corner in the pouring rain

Please don't try so hard to say goodbye

I pull away from Christian thank him for the dance and head towards the table to collect my bag and then head out of the tent. The second my feet leave the tent I feel a little lighter.

"Well, well, well if it isn't little Miss Anastasia Steele…." Oh great that's just what I need tonight.

"Hello Elena, to what do I owe this displeasure?" I say as I turn around and see that she is in her trademark leather, a dress that one doesn't suit her body type and two that doesn't suit her age. It is sleeveless, tight as shit with a slit up the lift leg to her mid-thigh and she is wearing matching gloves.

I've made no secret of the fact that I can't stand Mrs Lincoln as I get told I should call her but I only respect people who respect me and Elena doesn't respect me what so ever. You see it's what happens when you're surrounded by young boys and she thinks that no one knows what she's up to but when you're the quiet person who people tend to forget is there you pick up on a whole lot of shit that no one thinks anyone notices.

"Now come on dear that's no way to treat your elders…" she smirks at me.

"Don't you dare call me dear, you have no right…and for the record I treat people the way they treat me so maybe you need to change the way you talk to me…." God she frustrates the shit out of me and I could have a yelling match with her right her but that would embarrass my family and the Grey's and I have more class than that.

"Change the way I talk to you? Oh now your just being delusional, you know I thought that I had gotten you out of the picture years ago but yet, here you stand, dancing with Christian, having him smile every now and then but I must say things are looking a little icy there, such a shame…" I can hear the delight in her voice as she says it.

"Oh cut the crap Elena, you know as well as I do that you couldn't care less about Christian and I, just like I could care less about what you think on anything. I know all about you and the boys that you had "doing your yard work…" I'm not stupid but if you don't want it to get out I suggest that you be very careful what you say to me in the future…" I can feel him before I see him but I know that he heard me but right now I could care less about what either of them had to say.

"I have no idea what you're on about little girl…Your brain must be playing tricks on you, I don't have boys come and do yard work for me I have a gardener for that…" I can see that deep down she is panicking but I'm not going to let her know that. She obviously hasn't realised that Christian is standing a few feet behind her.

"You can spin me all the lies you want Elena I've seen you…not that you've noticed I've been there, neither has he so I suppose it's not just you….just leave me alone….both of you I knew I should never have come back here…" while she turns around to see who I pointed at I turn around and lift my dress and run towards the pier leaning against the railing as I feel the tears fall down my cheeks.

God why do I have to be such an emotional wreck these days, it's totally stupid, I never use to be this bad. All I can hear at the moment is Christian singing in my ear and it's not helping me in the slightest. I sit down on the pier and take my shoes off and pull my dress up so that it doesn't get wet and put my feet in the water.

The iciness of the water allows me to calm slightly because I'm focusing on that rather than what has happened tonight. I close my eyes and take a deep breath before opening them again.

"Ana dear are you alright?" I turn around and see Grace standing behind me. I move to stand up and turn to face her leaning against the railing.

"Oh Grace I'm sorry, I didn't mean to leave your party I just…I needed to clear my head…it's a bit much after being away for a while to remember what it's like to be well me I guess…but I love my life and I love your family and I would never regret coming to your party it's just overwhelming me I guess." I know that I'm rambling by my thoughts aren't coherent at the moment.

"Oh you sweet girl…I know what it's like believe me when Cary and I got together…I didn't know just how much work it took to be a part of the higher class…I got so overwhelmed that for the first year or so after we married that I nearly fainted during every dinner, ball or even just a business dinner, I never thought that I could get used to it but I did. We put so much pressure on you all to act like you should and behave just like we taught you but believe me I never forget what it's like to just want to be able to breathe…" she smiles as she talks to me and wraps her arm around my shoulders.

"You my girl don't need to apologise, you didn't ask for this life and by rights going to Georgetown you allowed yourself that space and then to come back and be thrust into society again…I can imagine it being too much for you but…. and correct me if I'm wrong but I don't think I am… you're not overwhelmed by all these people you are overwhelmed by my son…." She smiles at me as I look at her in shock. I open my mouth a few times to say something but nothing comes out.

"Ana darling I can see it even if you can't there is something going on between the two of you, not that I'm surprised the amount of time you use to spend together…and the way that he let you in when he wouldn't let anyone else. I know that when he was a teenager you stopped coming over and I can't say I understand why but he changed…he may not think that I noticed but I did, every day when Frankie would come over he would stand by the door waiting for you and when you didn't come he got angry and he would storm up to his room and slam the door…after the first few times I got upset watching him" she sighs and looks down at the wait as she moves to lean on the rail.

"Grace I…It's just…I'm sorry…I never meant to cause him to become angry with anything, I know that he was slowly letting go of all of his aggression…but honestly…he started to pull away long before I stopped coming over all together…" I run my hands down my dress.

"Look I should go…I don't want to keep you from your guests and I'm tired and not feeling too good. Thank you so much for inviting me tonight and can you say goodnight to everyone and thank Christian for the dance, I'm glad that I could help raise that money for Coping Together…" I lean down to pick up my clutch and start to walk off before turning back to her.

"Oh and if you can let my parents know that I left…I'd appreciate it…" I head up to where all the cars are parked and find Thomas and get him to take me home. God I need a bath and maybe a glass or two of wine to allow me to relax enough to get some sleep tonight.

The first time I see him since being back and already I want to kick his ass…well I obviously wouldn't because I'm not a violent person but he knows how to push me and he was trying tonight and then Fucken she bitch herself had to go and say something to me. God I'm not surprised her husband left her I wouldn't want to stick around with her attitude and the amount of work she's had done. Surprised she hasn't had any major complications…not that I would miss her if anything happened to her but I'm not that kind of person who would wish that on anyone.