I HAVE BEEN READING STORY AFTER STORY THAT PAINT ELENA LINCOLN AS A FIERY, TOUGH WOMAN THAT CAN HURT ANASTASIA WHENEVER SHE FEELS LIKE IT AND GET AWAY WITH ALMOST EVERYTHING, WHILE CHRISTIAN IS UNABLE TO STOP HER. NOW I DON'T MEAN TO PUT DOWN ALL THOSE TYPES OF STORIES, SOME I ACTUALLY LIKE, BUT I JUST WANT TO PUT OR SHOW ELENA IN A DIFFERENT LIGHT; THIS IS HOW I BELIEVE CHRISTIAN DEALT WITH HER DURING THEIR LAST ENCOUNTER.

THE LAST GOODBYE

The encounter

It had been a long day for Elena as she was about to leave her beauty salon, it was late in the evening and Esclava had closed down earlier, but she had stayed behind to finish up paperwork. She was looking forward to a quiet and relaxing evening. At least that was the plan until her eyes caught sight of the very attractive and sexy Christian Grey, the man she had known intimately years back.

Christian Grey was walking up the block and it appeared he did not notice her at first, that is until Elena called out to his name.

"Christian, Christian. My goodness, it's so great to see you, what are you doing here at this hour?"

"Oh, hello Elena, um, nothing much, just passing by." Christian responded while running his fingers through his hair.

"Just passing by? Oh come now, Christian Grey does not just walk the streets at this hour, unless you are out for a run with your bodyguard, and you are certainly not wearing your running gear" Elena smirked. However, she noticed that something was wrong, he looked angry.

"Christian, something is wrong, tell me, why are you really here?"

Christian huffed and gave her an exasperated look. "Nothing is wrong Elena, can a man just take a walk after a long day?"

"No, of course not dear, it is a good night for a walk. Christian, I have an idea, I had a hard day today, I could use a drink to relax, what do you say; care to join me for a glass of wine, catch up on old times?" Elena continued "We have not talked for a while Christian, perhaps we can clear the air between us, and remember, I am a good listener." Elena would love nothing more than to spend some time with Christian alone, she missed him so much since he had stopped calling and texting her after that awful confrontation at his parent's home.

Christian hesitated at first, but decided to accept Elena's offer because of his sudden need for alcohol; he followed her down the street to a corner bar that offered a good wine list.

Elena could not believe her good luck, finally running into Christian, she was giddy as a school girl.

The Meridian Bar was an elegant but laid back place where Jazz music played in the background, a great place to enjoy a drink and unwind.

Christian followed her all the way to the back where a cozy booth awaited them, and it was her who immediately asked to see the wine list.

She noticed that Christian was rather quiet, and obviously not in a good mood.

"Are you going to order now or read the entire wine list until they close?" He spat.

"Jesus Christian, did someone spill ketchup on your Gucci suit today, why are you so dam grumpy?"

"Ugh, sorry Elena, like I said before, I had a long day, I'm just tired."

"I know dear, running your empire can take a lot of you, maybe you should take some time off?"

Christian snorted, "Running my business is easier than dealing with…."Before Christian could finish the waiter came by to take their order.

He ordered a bottle of Barossa Valley Shiraz without bothering to ask Elena what she wanted, so bossy she tought. He was pissed off when the waiter had the gull to ask for payment first, after all, that was an expensive bottle that required payment upfront. Christian muttered curses under his breath and threw his black card on the table.

After the flustered waiter left, Christian started drumming his fingers on the table, all the while Elena patiently waited for him to say something, she could tell something was bothering him.

"Stop staring at me like that, I hate it when you do that."

"Do what, what am I doing?" She asked confused.

"You are trying to read me, so that you can lecture me in things that are none of your business."

"Don't be cruel Christian, that is not what I am trying to do. I am just concerned, are you going to tell me what is bothering you? Are things alright between you and Ana?"

"For Fuck sakes Elena, what did I just say, that is none of your business..."

Elena waived her hand not letting Christian finish. "I am sorry Christian, that did not come out right. Look, I am just making small talk, God Christian, it's just that we have not talked in such a long time, I just don't know what is going on with your life, we used to tell each other everything, remember?"

"Don't go there Elena, I am a married man now, I only need to talk to my wife, and after your little stunt back at my parent's home, how did you expect me to keep in touch with you?"

"No, of course not, what I did that night was just awful, I overreacted when you announced your engagement to Ana, you have no idea how sorry I am. I should have never said those things to her, there is no excuse for my behavior, I really am sorry. I did try to contact Ana several times to apologize, but you put a stop to that, remember?"

"I do not want your empty apologies Elena, you should apologize to my Mother instead, after all, you did cause quite a scene at her house, and not to mention the fact that you ousted us right in her home."

"I know, I know, I did try to apologize to her and Carrick too, but they never returned my calls. It hurts me to no end the loss of her friendship; Grace will never forgive me, will she?"

"Of course not, what did you expect Elena? She finds out that her best friend betrayed her by fucking around with her teenage son, and you are fucking lucky that she only slapped you, she could have done worse!"

"But she did Christian, I am no longer welcomed at social functions, I no longer get invitations to galas or charity events, I'm quite unpopular it seems. " EIena lamented "I don't blame her though, she loves you, she is your Mother and she is just trying to protect you."

"I am sorry for what I said to Ana, I really am Christian, I was not thinking straight, I was out of line and I know that now."

"It's Anastasia, Elena, or Mrs. Grey to you, only I get to call her Ana." Christian glared at Elena.

That statement both angered and hurt her, but Elena would not allow Christian to notice such feelings.

"I see, I apologize again, so Anastasia it is then. So, Christian, tell me, are you really happy? "

Christian closed his eyes for a moment, but before he could answer, the waiter returned with the bottle of wine and two glasses.

"Just leave the bottle dear, we will do the rest." Elena purred to the waiter.

"I'll ask again, are you happy Christian?"

"Yes, I am a very happy man Elena, I love my wife, and she loves me back, and why she loves this fucked up man, God only knows, but she does." His eyes closed again, as he almost whispered "She wants to have a family someday, and that scares me, I just don't know Elena, imagine me as father, scary, isn't it?"

"Well, having children usually happens after marriage Christian, surely you knew this before you decided to marry, didn't that thought ever cross you mind?"

"Yes, of course it did, I just, ah, never mind, I should have not brought this up."

Elena did not want to upset Christian further, so she changed the subject. She brought up her salon business, they both talked about the success of Esclava, in spite of the current economy. Elena was a smart business woman, and even without Christian's financial backing, she was turning a good profit. After a while and a second bottle of wine, the conversation flowed easier, and it appeared that Christian had finally relaxed.

Taking advantage of his change in demeanor, Elena could no longer hold back her thoughts, she had to know.

"Do you miss it Christian?" She asked with a longing in her voice.

"What?"

"You heard me, you know what, us, the lifestyle."

Christian groaned "Fuck Elena, that's water under the bridge, and so is my fucked up past. If I wanted that life back, do you think that I would have married the most important woman in my life? Before I met Ana, I never thought I could live without dominating women the way I did, to fully control them, I actually thought I would be happy living like that; that is until my beautiful wife came crashing into my life. I no longer desire that lifestyle, I do not need it to survive."

Christian sighed as he continued on "I should be with Ana right now, I need her more than she needs me, maybe I should be getting back home."

Elena was surprised, she never heard him speak that way before, the Christian Grey she knows does not feel love, he is not capable of loving anyone that way. Love is for fools, that is what she used to tell him all the time, it became their motto.

In the beginning, Elena did not think much of Anastasia Steel, she thought she would become just a mere distraction for Christian, something new and exciting to play with. But as time passed by she knew that was not the case because she began to notice how close Christian and Ana had become. This did not set well, it bothered her a great deal, she felt very possessive towards Christian and did not like the feeling that he was being taken away from her. Being nicknamed Mrs. Robinson by Anastasia only added fuel to the fire.

She wanted to get back at Ana, and the way to do it was to get Christian Grey back .

"Christian, my dear, you are upset, and I think I understand why. It saddens me to see you this way, you need to relax more and think less, you just need to go with your instinct, and I know how to make you feel good, I have always known how to please you. I know exactly what you like; I know your wants and needs and I can help you put things into perspective. Why don't we leave and go over to my place, I promise you, you will not regret it."

Elena reached over to touch Christian's hand, rubbing gently at his knuckles.

But Christian's reaction was not what both had expected, he flinched, he actually flinched away from her. The look of surprise and disgust on his face shocked Elena, he had never done this before.

"What the fuck Elena? I have no desire to be with you anymore, that flame was put out long time ago, ancient history. Why degrade yourself this way, not happy or satisfied with your current boy toy? Christian ran his fingers roughfly through his hair . I have not thought of you that way in years Elena, and I love my wife, very much so, you crossed the line this time!"

A mortified Elena had to come up with an excuse to save herself any more embarrassment. "No, please Christian, I was only joking, just trying to lighten the mood, I really meant nothing by it." She faked a laugh to make light of the situation. "Of course I still have Issac, he is just so wonderful and I am very happy with him, it was a misunderstanding, I am sorry I've upset you so."

"Look Elena, what happened between you and me, it was just wrong, so wrong on many levels, and I regret that it took me many years to realize that. There is nothing I can do to change the past, but just try to move on and learn to live with my regrets."

Elena did not want Christian to continue, his words were cutting her deep, and she just knew what was coming next.

"Look Christian, I am so sorry, I know I overstepped my bounds, but your friendship means so much to me, I just don't want to lose you, although I do not regret our past, not one bit."

"See, that is the problem right there Elena, you not seeing anything wrong with our fucked up past. I was fifteen when you seduced me. How old are you now, fifty?"

Humiliation was a hard pill to swallow.

"I am still in my forties Christian" A sad smile appearing on her lips.

"No Elena, you are fifty, old enough to be my Mother, how sick is that?"

"I am sorry about hurting your feelings Elena, but you see, I have grown as a man, I am a different person now, I am a man with regrets, and you are one of them."

Elena gasped. "How can you say that, Christian, what we had was special, special enough for us to continue our friendship." The sadness in her voice was obvious.

"I am sorry, but we are at different crossroads in our lives, I have a different life now, a life that has no place for you, and you must have seen this coming Elena, why do you think I ended our business partnership not long ago?"

"Because your wife probably begged you to do so, I know Ana…."

"Stop right there Elena, I made this decision all on my own, keep my wife out of this."

"What are you really saying Christian?"

"What I am saying is that we can no longer remain friends, not even acquaintances from hereafter, this is the last time you and I will meet or see each other Elena, you are just a part of my past, and nothing more."

"So, just like that, our friendship ends?"

"Yes, it does, we will not see each other ever again." He answered with such finality and determination.

"I understand Christian, I really do, and I hold no ill will against you or Anastasia, your life is with her, I know that now."

It took a few seconds for a humiliated and heartbroken Elena to get up and utter her last words "Goodbye Christian."

Elena Lincoln left quietly, angry and humiliated, leaving behind the only man she ever truly wanted, Christian Grey .

...

Five Years later...TBC