Hi, I'm so sorry about taking so, long. This chapter was on my laptop which died and the charger broke and I haven't long had a new one. Thank you for sticking with it and not only have I given you a long chapter, I have also double uploaded for you my friends. Please don't be disappointed in what happens. Some reviews requested that some things not to happen but they have. That's only because I think it's important to the story and it works.
I have some mixed reviews about the spanking that was in this chapter so I have re-written to end of this chapter to have taken it out as some people hate it. So instead of Christian hitting her, they just shouted some more.
... ... ...
Chapter 7: The Birthday Sail
When Phoebe woke the next morning, Christian was already gone. She could also hear movement outside her bedroom door of her family preparing to go out sailing for the day. She had been looking forward to it since they found out they were all going but now she didn't feel like going, especially without Ava being there. Ashley ran into her room jumping on her bed telling her to get out of bed and get downstairs right away, pulling on her arm. "Come on, Phoebe. We need to eat breakfast before we go." He said.
"Ok, Ashley. Give me a minute to get dressed and I'll be down," she replied smiling. Ashley was always excited on everyone else's birthday. Especially Nicks because he loved sailing. After a minute, he went downstairs to eat his breakfast while Phoebe got dressed. She chose to wear a short red and yellow summer dress that showed off quite a bit of leg and a low neck on it, making her breasts look bigger. She slipped on her matching heeled sandals and pulled her hair up into a high ponytail. After putting on a little make-up and going to the bathroom, she made her way downstairs, carrying her beach bag with her smallest bikini and towel. When her brothers saw her, their mouths were open in shock. Luckily their parents weren't down yet, Christian would have had a heart attack.
"Phoebe, what are you wearing?" Ted asked unsure where to look. He had never seen his sister wear so little and it was making him uncomfortable.
"I am wearing my summer dress with sandals as we are going sailing on this very nice day in May. I checked the weather yesterday and it is supposed to be nice and hot." She said, turning her attention to Nick. "Hey, Nick. Happy birthday," she kissed him on the cheek and he smiled.
"Thanks, sis. You look nice by the way." He commented.
"Yeah, but she won't get away with it. There's no way dads' going to let you go out in that, Bee." Teddy said. "Why are you wearing it anyway? You've never worn something you know dad won't like."
"Teddy, if I revolved my life around what dad thinks and feels then it's pointless living a life at all. Besides I'm tired of always trying to please dad." She replied as her parent's grandparents and Aunt Mia entered the room. Christian took one look at his daughter and his mouth dropped open.
"Phoebe Grey, go upstairs and change this minute. You are not leaving this house wearing that," he said, dangerously low. She rolled her eyes and welcomed her grandparents, ignoring him. "Phoebe, don't ignore me. If you don't go and change then you are not coming with us."
"Christian that's a bit harsh." Ana scolded.
"Ana, have you seen what she's wearing?"
"Yes I have. And we're going to be on a boat while she's wearing it. It's not like anyone's going to see her,"
"That's not the point, Ana. She knows how I feel about her looking so underdressed."
"And she's right here, so she can hear what you're saying." Phoebe piped in smirking.
"Good, I was beginning to think you were deaf and I would have to drag you up to your room to get changed." Christian said, not knowing how the hearing issue was true to a certain extent.
"I'd rather not thanks," she said, smiling. She knew Christian wouldn't make a scene as it Nick's birthday, but she also knew that they would be at each other's throats later on.
"Christian, come on. It's just one day, it won't hurt anyone." Grace said putting an arm round Phoebe's shoulders. "Now, stop arguing with your daughter and go and see the birthday boy before Elliot turns up." Christian did so while Grace and Ana led Phoebe from the room.
"Phoebe, I know you're angry at your dad but don't purposely push his buttons," Grace warned.
"I'm not purposely pushing his buttons. I'm just acting more like a teenage girl now. It's not my fault if it doesn't work with him." She replied. Ana sighed.
"Phoebe, you are purposely trying to aggravate him now. Don't deny it, I know you better than that. Just don't make things worse between you as it's going to affect everyone and I like our lives the way they are right now. I don't need extra stress." Ana snapped.
"Mum, he's in a mood because I'm wearing a dress right now. It's not my fault he's so insecure."
"Phoebe all we're saying is, don't do anything now that you'll regret later. You love your father dearly and I know that if you hurt him now, you will regret it." Grace said.
"He hurt me. I'm just returning the favour."
"And I still need to look at your ankle. You've been limping since you fell off the stage last night." Phoebe didn't reply and went back into the main room with the boys and Mia. Elliot had just turned up and apologized for Kate and Ava's absence.
... ... ...
"Happy birthday, Nick." Christian said as his mother and wife led his daughter from the room. He sat down with his sons, his father and sister while they waited for Elliot. Christian heard Kate and Ava weren't going with them and he was partly glad. Ava was a mischief-maker and convinced Phoebe to do mad things when they were together.
"Thanks dad. Today's going to be great." He said.
"Dad, what's going on with you and Phoebe?" Teddy asked. Christian looked at his sons and knew it would be good to tell them but decided not to.
"Nothing that you boys need to worry about ok?" he said simply. Carrick agreed but told Christian that they will be talking about it at some point. However, for today they would leave and have a nice day out for Nick's sake. "Anyway, Nick. You have a choice. You can either have your presents before we leave or you can wait till we're in the middle of the ocean."
"Erm, now please. That way I don't have to worry about forgetting to pick them all up." He said. Christian smiled and agreed, although they would wait for the girls to come back and for Elliot to arrive. As if on cue, the bell rang and minutes later Elliot walked into the great room, carrying a large box.
"Hello, mate. Happy birthday," he said happily. At this point Phoebe was walking back into the room. "Sorry Kate and Ava aren't here," Elliot was saying. "But Ava is grounded and she can't be trusted home alone."
"That's ok, Uncle Elliot. What'd she do anyway?"
"We were arguing last night about that dress she was wearing at the show. I didn't like it." He replied. No one said anything else. Everyone, except Phoebe, ate breakfast then gave Nick his presents before heading off.
His grandparents gave him their present first: a complete baseball set, for when he's out with his friends, and a new video camera that's worth a lot of money. He likes to make mini movies about family life so they knew it would be well used. Elliot, Kate and Ava bought him a new TV with all the appropriate extras for him to 'hook up' his camera. Christian was shocked that his brother would buy him that but said nothing when he saw Nick's excitement. Mia hadn't gotten him a lot as she had, had a lot of hospital appointment lately; however, she managed to get him some blank DVD's for him to put his family mini movies on. Teddy then gave him his present. The children all agreed years ago not to spend too much on each other otherwise they would have a competition as to who could buy the most expensive thing, and most of the time they were using Christian's credit card. Teddy had bought Nick the newest baseball game for his Xbox and also tickets to go and see a baseball game. To say Nick was happy was an understatement. He was even happier when Phoebe gave him the baseball she had bought him. He hugged his sister tightly. James and Ashley gave him a joint present: a remote control yacht to use on the lake at the back of their garden. Christian and Ana didn't realise they had one when they bought the house and the two eldest children discovered it when they decided to go exploring one afternoon. Phoebe was just a toddler and Ana was yet to get pregnant with Nick. Christian and Ana had bought Nick a new camera for him to take pictures, knowing Christian's parents had bought a video camera. They had also bought him a new phone, the newest games console and Ana insisted on buying him some nice new clothes.
After Nick had unwrapped his presents and shown more emotion than he normally would around his family, they all set off towards the mariner, taking three different cars. Christian and Ana rode in one SUV with Nick. Phoebe, Teddy and James rode in the other, while Grace, Carrick, Elliot, Mia and Ashley travelled in Carrick's car. When they arrived, Nick wanted a picture with everyone in front of the boat. Giving the camera to Taylor, he got everyone to pose. Normally, Christian would have his girls on either side of him, but Phoebe purposely moved away from him to stand by her aunt with Ashley. He sighed but decided not to bring it up. After the photo was taken, they all went on board. After telling Mac he didn't need to stay, Christian led his wife and Nick up to where he drives the boat. Taylor got on board too; he just went somewhere he wouldn't be seen until he was needed. Everyone else had gone to sit down or wave to the people gathering nearby to watch their departure. Once they had gone more into open waters, Nick stood in front of his father holding onto the steering wheel while Christian told him what to do while steering. Ana was just smiling and video recording it on his new camera. He had insisted on taking his new cameras with him for the day so he can gather some nice memories.
Once they had decided to stop, everyone went about doing their own thing for the day. Phoebe and Mia had decided to lounge around in the sun while all the boys had decided to play games with Nick. Grace and Ana were talking in shelter holding a cold drink each while Christian, Elliot and Carrick went about checking around the boat, making sure everything was ship-shape. It was quite a relaxing day, although Christian knew he would have to talk to Phoebe about last night. He had been watching her all the time she had been chilling in the sun and he had noticed that she hadn't put on any sunscreen. She was talking quietly with Mia but he didn't hear the conversation as he and Carrick joined their wives. Elliot went to join the boys. Ana and Grace smiled at their spouses, although Ana frowned when she saw Christians face.
"Christian, what's the matter?" she asked.
"Phoebe isn't wearing any sunscreen and she's laying out in the sun wearing a dress that barely covers her up." He said. Ana sighed.
"You want to go and say something don't you?" she asked, already knowing the answer.
"Yes, and I'm going to. I don't want her to get burned." He replied going to stand up when Ana laced a hand on his arm.
"Christian, leave her alone for a minute. I'll go and tell her, you know she'll just get frustrated at you for no reason about it. Besides she's talking to Mia, don't interrupt them." She pleaded, handing him a drink. He sighed and nodded, sitting down next to her and making conversation with his parents.
... ... ...
"So, what's the deal with you and your father?" Mia asked her niece on the other side of the large boat, away from ears that shouldn't be listening. She was lying on her stomach in her lounger looking at Phoebe with her arms folded beneath her head.
"I'm angry at him, so I'm not talking to him. He wasn't happy when he saw what I was wearing this morning."
"I heard. So what are you doing now? Finding ways to upset him because he missed the show?" Mia sat up slightly to look at Phoebe properly. "You know that's not going to solve anything right?"
"Aunt Mia, I'm not purposely trying upset him. I'm just trying to get him to understand how he hurt me by breaking his promise. You managed to make it and you've been in a pretty bad way lately."
"Exactly. I'm not as busy as your father is at the moment. I've spent the good part of the last three months in hospital. Your fathers most likely spent that time working hard to keep you all happy and safe."
"But he couldn't even find three minutes for me. I don't care that he missed every other act. Right now I would've been happy if he just turned up to see me."
"Then why don't we put on another show? Maybe you can sing for him later?" Phoebe had to laugh.
"No. He doesn't deserve it just yet." Mia laughed too.
"Oh, my dear niece. You are evil." They laughed for a while until they heard the boys shouting over to Christian about jumping in the sea.
"Not yet, boys. Wait until after lunch then for lunch to settle down. And you won't be jumping in anywhere without life jackets on." Christian said. An idea popped in Phoebe's head, but she thought she would wait until later to do it. Lying down on her back, she closed her eyes and enjoyed the feel of the sun on her skin.
... ... ...
"Ana, has Christian and Phoebe actually spoken today?" Grace asked while the boys were checking things over on the boat. Ana shook her head.
"Not really. Only what you heard this morning about her dress. I think she's going to drag this out as long as she possibly can. It won't be too long because she needs him. She always needs him."
"But she's really angry. I've never heard anyone shout at him as much as she has lately."
"Yes, well. She might want to try stopping because Christian won't take it forever. He realises that she's like him and she needs to shout about it until her anger is gone but he won't accept it for much longer." Grace nodded in agreement. She knew her grandchildren were well behaved because Christian is strict and punished them if they act in ways he didn't like.
"They both need to grow up. And, you're doing pretty well in dealing with the situation." Grace commented.
"Really? I don't feel as though I am. Last night they decided to have round two of shouting when everyone was asleep and when I went downstairs, Christian and I started to argue again." Ana sounded tired.
"Things will get better, Ana. I just think Phoebe needs a bit more time to forgive him."
"But, I don't think there's enough of it. Christians already started to doubt himself as a father. Any longer I'm scared he'll go to that dark place where he fears everything again." Grace didn't get a chance to respond as Christian and Carrick joined them. Ana kissed her husband and asked what was wrong. He was worried about Phoebe not wearing sunscreen. They all had a short conversation when their sons joined them.
"Hey, dad. Can we go for a swim?" Teddy asked. Christian smiled but thought it was too early for them to go jumping in the sea. He told them they could go after lunch once it's settled down while wearing life jackets. Ana smiled and put her head on his shoulder.
"Always the control freak, Mr Grey." She said and his parents laughed. He smiled and agreed, wrapping his arms around her and kissing her forehead. He was watching Phoebe again and saw that she was drifting off to sleep in the sun. He smiled softly, although was still worried about her not wearing any sunscreen. Slowly he stood up, unwrapping his arms from around Ana and made his way over to her.
"Phoebe, if you're going to lie out in the sun, then you need to put on some sunscreen, please. I don't want you to get burned." He said.
"Dad, I'm fine. I don't need it." She replied not looking at him.
"Phoebe if you don't put some on then I will either put it on for you or I can take you inside away from the sun. You're choice." He was clearly trying to hide his irritation, and failing miserably.
"I don't want to put any on. I want to get a tan." She said slowly, as if he did not understand. He knelt down and spoke in her ear.
"Phoebe, you are really trying my patience at the moment. I've had to deal with you shouting and swearing at me over the last sixteen hours, I am not going to let you backchat me as well. Don't make me punish you for all three." She stood up and looked at him. She could see her mother sitting up in her chair, deciding whether or not to intervene whatever's going on.
"Dad, what don't you get? I. Do not. Want. To. Wear. Any. Sunscreen. Ok?" she said walking away and inside to get a drink. He didn't follow her as he was registering what she had just said to him. His anger was building up and he stood to call out to her. The family was now all paying attention to what was going on. Phoebe re-appeared on deck and was smiling her sweet smile. "Yes, daddy?" she asked innocently.
"Put some sunscreen on." He said, quietly. Her smile turned into a frown and she sighed, walking towards the back of the boat. He followed her as did her brothers excited at the fact they thought there was going to be a fight between their father and sister. When they got there Christian was shouting at her again. They saw that she had discarded her dress and was wearing a bikini that only just covered up certain parts on her body. Christian was furious. "Phoebe Grace Grey, put that dress back on." He shouted still walking to her. His parents, Elliot, Mia and Ana appeared behind him unsure what to do. Ana did gasp and scream a little, however, when Phoebe climbed the rail and jumped off the yacht. Christian ran to the rail and looked down counting how long it took Phoebe to resurface. She did, one minute later, as he was starting to worry she had drowned. She looked up at him and grinned, ignoring his shouting at her to get back on board.
"I don't want to!" she shouted back before swimming away slightly. Ana started to worry. Phoebe had never been the strongest swimmer and she often found it difficult to breathe when in the water, even with her head above the surface. She held onto Christians arm and he looked at her, seeing tears in her eyes.
"Phoebe, come back up here, right now. Or so help me..." he stopped remembering where he was. He turned to see his parents glaring at him, his brother and sister not knowing what to do and his sons looked shocked, all of them trying to hide their smiles. He finally looked down at Ana.
"Christian come inside a minute?" she pleaded. "Mia, Elliot, can you make sure Phoebe doesn't go too far?" she asked. They nodded. Ana and Christian followed Grace and Carrick inside and sat on one of the sofas in there. Grace stayed standing.
"Well, that could have been handled better." She snapped at her son.
"Care to elaborate, mum?" he asked sarcastically.
"Don't get an attitude with me Christian Grey." She replied in her motherly tone. "Now, then. What did you say to her?"
"I only told her to put on some sunscreen." He replied.
"And that caused her to jump off?"
"You must've said something else." Grace insisted.
"Mum, honestly. That's all I asked her to do. She had to give me attitude about it, and then decided to walk off. When she came back outside, she jumped off. And right now, I should be trying to get her back on board. She's not a strong swimmer." He said, standing.
"Christian, sit down." Carrick said and Christian obeyed. "If you want to get through to your teenage daughter, then you need a different tactic. Ana has been telling you this since you missed the show." It clicked in Christians head.
"She's purposely trying to piss me off because I missed the fucking show? Fuck!" he snapped.
"Christian, she's not upset about you missing the show. She doesn't care about that, now. She's upset because you hurt her by breaking your promise. You've never broken a promise before and that's what's hurt her the most." Ana said, crying softly. "This was supposed to be a happy day," she whispered. Christian wrapped his arm around her and held her tightly.
"It is. This is just one slip up. I promise the rest of the day will be fine. How about you try to bring her back on board and I keep my distance so we can both calm down? Then later on I can attempt to have a calm conversation with her." he suggested.
"Christian, you don't know how to have a calm conversation with a teenager." She snapped.
"Ana, Christians right." Carrick said. "He needs to try and have a calm conversation with her and she needs to realise that behaving the way she is, is not acceptable."
"But by punishing her, it's making it seem like she's in the wrong when Christian is the one who made the mistake," Ana said. She was completely at a loss at what to do. She had never seen anyone's behaviour change as dramatically as Phoebe's has since last night and she didn't like it. Christian had mood swings, not behaviour transplants. It's as if Phoebe wasn't the little girl she was the other night when they were doing each other's hair and nails.
"We won't punish her Ana," Grace said reassuringly. "We just need to find a way that tells her that dealing with her anger like this isn't healthy. Especially since she is not the strongest swimmer and is currently swimming out in the ocean on her own."
"I'm going to go out there and keep an eye on her," Christian said and this time they let him go. Ana waited for him to close the door before putting her head in her hands and started crying. Grace sat next to her, took her in a hug, and gently rubbed her back.
"Hey, Ana," she soothed. "Calm down. They'll sort it out. In time."
"That's just it Grace. I don't want it to be in time. Things are going to be awkward and now she's purposely pushing his buttons. She knew that jumping off would piss him off, so she did it. She's been angry with him before but never this bad. I'm worried about her. She can't swim and she's still limping from last night. Surely her ankle must be hurting from having to kick to stay above the water?"
"Yes, it most probably is. But there's nothing anyone can do until we get her back on board." Ana just nodded. She let Grace hold her for a while, while Carrick subtly left them alone. "Why don't I get you a glass of wine and then we can go and join the birthday boy?" Grace asked, trying to distract her. Ana shook her head.
"No, thanks. I can't have any wine." She said. They hadn't told anyone but the kids that she was pregnant yet, they were going to wait for the twelve-week point. She was roughly seven weeks so far and they thought they would reveal the news when the family met for Mia's birthday meal in six weeks. Although Grace was curious as to why her daughter-in-law couldn't have any wine.
"Why can't you have any wine? Are you ill?" she asked sitting up to look at her. Ana smiled lightly and shook her head.
"Erm, no. Not ill. I'm pregnant." She whispered. She trusted Grace with her life, and her children's. Grace was shocked, then she broke into a huge grin hugging Ana tightly.
"Oh, congratulations. You must be really happy! How far are you?"
"I'm only seven weeks, so you can't tell anyone. Please Grace. We were going to reveal it at Mia's birthday, when I'm thirteen weeks." Grace nodded her head understanding.
"Do the kids know?"
"Yes, although there's mixed views on it. Teddy's happy, the other boys are too, although slightly more unsure. Phoebe didn't look too happy when we told her, though." A thought occurred to Grace.
"Ana, when did you tell them?" Thursday was the believed answer. "Have you thought that maybe that's why she's acting up a bit? She's worried about having another sibling to share your attention with?" Grace suggested. Ana hadn't thought of that, she only thought that it was Christian's doing to make their daughter angry.
"You mean she may feel more left out? Why would she think that?"
"Having lots of children makes it hard to find time for all of them sometimes. Maybe, Phoebe just thinks that it's going to be difficult to find time to spend with you. She knows that a baby needs a lot of attention and is a lot of responsibility."
"Grace, I know that. But we always make time to spend with the kids. We've never given them any reason to think that we won't be around and another baby won't stop that either."
"I'm only looking from Phoebe's point of view. Maybe she needs that reassurance." Ana nodded and said nothing else. She suddenly had a lot to think about. Oh, how she wished that she could have a drink right now. She knows it would make her feel better. She smiled up at Grace before going to find Nick and her sons.
... ... ...
"Alright Phoebe you've made your point. Now will you please get back on board before I come in the after you." Christian said low and threatening. Phoebe looked a little scared at her father's tone but she didn't want him to think he was getting to her, so she turned away and faced the open water rather than at him. "Think about your mother. She's really upset that you're doing this." He tried the different tactic Carrick suggested, although obviously in the wrong context. However, it got Phoebe to spin round to face him.
"Don't use the mum-card on me!" she screamed. "I'm sick of it." Christian couldn't take her attitude anymore. He took off his shirt and jeans, revealing his swim shorts beneath, and jumped in the water, the ripples pushing Phoebe away uncontrollably and sending her below the surface. When she came up again she was coughing badly and didn't notice Christian swimming toward her. Her ankle was hurting like mad and the sudden disturbance made her lose focus and go under again. She felt someone grabbing her arms, pulling her up and she looked into the angry, glaring, grey eyes of her father. He was holding her tighter than necessary, digging his fingers into her skin. She gasped in pain and pleaded with her eyes for him to let go. He loosened his grip but not completely released her.
"I should spank you for this trick you've fucking pulled, young lady. You can't bloody swim, that's why you wear a life jacket and that's why you wait until I say you can jump off. Now get your arse back on the boat." He told her. She was suddenly terrified and swam as best as she could to the lowest point where they get back on board. Taylor was there, waiting for her. He didn't look happy. When she grabbed a towel and wrapped it round her, she ran. She was looking for somewhere to hide from her angry father. She was angry at him, too, but when he was this angry when the kids misbehaved, their best chance was to run, hide and pray he didn't find you until he had calmed down. Phoebe knew that would be pointless as there were limited hiding places on this yacht but it was just a habit.
She didn't run very fast due to the throbbing in her ankle but somehow she managed to get into a cabin and hide under the bed. Christian hadn't followed; she'd had a minute head start after all. As she lay, waiting to see if he would turn up, she let her mind wander. The plan had been to hurt him and see how he had upset her, not make him angry. Shit! I've even upset mum. Not my intention. And Nick. It's his fucking birthday and I do this. We were all supposed to have fun and yet I've ruined it. Come on you stupid bitch, for once stop thinking about yourself. All because dad missed the fucking show, you're acting like it's the biggest crime in the fucking world. Her mind continued to wander. It's not just missing the show, she realises that now, it's the fucking baby. She wants attention from her parents and this is the only way she could think of, not thinking about the consequences.
A tear rolled down her cheek as the guilt started to build up. She didn't notice the door to the cabin open or her father kneel beside her and glare at her until he pulled her out from under the bed by grabbing her arm. He softened his expression when he could see she was crying.
"Cupcake? What's wrong?" he asked concerned. She shook her head, refusing to answer. Even when she tried to get the words out, none came. He sat her on the bed and asked her again, more gently, why she was crying. This time she found some words to say.
"I've realised what I've done." She whispered. "I've made mum upset and I've ruined Nick's birthday and I've embarrassed myself in front of the whole family." His heart was suddenly breaking at what she's realised.
"Cupcake, calm down. Surely you realise that your behaviour today and last night was inappropriate?" he asked. This caused her anger to build up again.
"Oh, I've behaved inappropriately?" she snapped. "Dad, if anyone's behave inappropriately, it's you. You broke your promise!" and she quickly left the cabin before he could respond. He was at a complete loss at what to do.
... ... ...
Returning to the deck, Phoebe looked for her brothers and found them sitting with Ana, in the shade. Her grandparents, aunt and uncle had gone off to relax elsewhere temporarily. Sitting down next to her mother, Phoebe spoke. "Mum? I'm sorry for earlier. I didn't mean to upset you." She said. Ana just smiled gently and gave her a small hug. "Nick, I'm sorry for ruining your birthday as well. I shouldn't be letting my anger at dad affect everyone else."
"Hey, Bee, chill. It doesn't matter anymore," Teddy said. "Have you two sorted it out yet?" Phoebe shook her head.
"No, dad's idea of sorting things out is shouting at us, rather than talking." This made Ana angry.
"I'm sure he didn't mean it, baby," she said softly. "You scared him when you jumped off and he didn't know how to deal with those emotions. Don't be even more mad at him, he can't take it. Anyway, your grandmother wants to see you, about your ankle since you refused to let her do it last night. Go and find her now, please." She said before excusing herself from her children's company to go in search of her husband. She found him in the cabin he'd spanked their daughter and closed the door when she entered. "Phoebe just told me what happened." He looked at her.
"What exactly did she say?"
"That your way of sorting things out is shouting rather than talking. So I am going to ask you this once, Mr Grey. Did you shout at her after I told you to leave her alone? Or did she make it up?" he looked down in shame and she had her answer.
"She just wouldn't listen to me. And then she ran away from me. She even hid under the bed from me, Ana. I know I missed the show which is causing her to act like this, but I don't want her to be scared of me getting angry." He said quietly.
"Don't start getting upset now, Christian. She scared the shit out of all of us, but you don't everyone else lining up to shout at her, do you?" she nearly shouted and he shook his head. "I said it last night and I'm going to say it again. If you stopped putting a hundred other things first, maybe you would see what our children are achieving and how much your daughter is trying to get your attention."
"What do you want me to do?" he asked, standing.
"The only thing I want you to do is a favour. Leave. Her. Alone! She will talk to you when she's ready and at the rate you're going, that will be never." He sighed and eventually agreed. Kissing his wife, who was slightly reluctant, they made their way to the deck where they found the whole family sitting around laughing and talking. This is my family he thought. Maybe Ana's right, I don't spend enough time with them.
Sitting next to the birthday boy they all ate their lunch, keeping the conversation light and the father and daughter ignored each other to keep the peace. When they finished, Christian spoke up. "Right then. Kids in half-an-hour if you wear your life jackets you may go for a swim, as long as you promise to stay close to the boat." This shocked everyone considering what Phoebe had done. Normally he wouldn't let anyone do something if someone had already done it when they shouldn't have. Oh well he thought it's Nicks birthday and he loves swimming. And just this once he wasn't going to stop Phoebe from joining in should she wish. He hated arguing, especially with his children. The boys jumped up and smiled high-fiving each other, glad their sister hadn't ruined it for them. Phoebe just looked at him before standing and going to sunbathe a bit more. Mia followed her, eager to know what happened when she was back on board, leaving Christian with Ana and his parents as Elliot had gone off to call Kate.
"Thank you," Ana said taking his hand.
"For not letting what happened ruin Nick's day," she replied placing her head on his shoulder, causing Grace and Carrick to smile. Christian just shrugged and pulled her closer giving her a kiss.
... ... ...
Half an hour later, as promised, Christian allowed his children to go for a swim, even offered Phoebe to join in, although she declined and just lay out in the sun with Mia. She had told her aunt briefly what happened when she was back on board. She mainly said that she and Christian just argued some more. At 3 o'clock Mia had to go and take her medication, so Phoebe thought she might try the calm talk with her father, that her mother suggested, while her brothers and Elliot were still swimming and her grandparents and mother were talking. She found him sitting at the wheel watching his family from above. He didn't notice her and she nearly chickened out.
"Dad?" she asked. He turned and looked at her, smile gone and suddenly looking unsure what to do. He promised Ana he'd leave her alone but they didn't talk about what to do if she went to him. Then again, they never thought she would try and talk to him today. "Don't look so scared, I'm not going to shout." He relaxed a little.
"What's up, Cupcake?" he asked.
"Nothing. Just thought I'd try the calm talk mum suggested." She said monotone. "I'm still mad you, you know."
"I know. Would you believe that I really am sorry for last night? I was really looking forward to it."
"Then why miss it? Mum made it, the boys made it; Uncle Elliot made it for Ava. Even Aunt Mia made it dad, but not you. You promised you weren't going to let anything interfere with the plan." She said. He explained what happened but that doesn't mean it solved their problem. "You blew off my show to sort out your stupid boat? Oh I see everyone else is more important in this family aren't they?" she said before running off. Some things will never change!
... ... ...
At six that evening the Grey family made their way back to the mariner, Nick steering with Christian like Ana had done the first time, all those years ago. Over an hour later, they were pulling up into the mariner, a crowd of people gathering to see them all in for it was still light out and a calm May afternoon. When they were back on the dock, they all agreed to go back to Christian and Ana's and have a look at the many photos that had been taken that day. Climbing into the cars in a similar format they arrived in, they set off.
Two hours later, after a large meal cooked by Mrs Taylor, Grace and Carrick said goodbye. Elliot had left an hour ago to get back to Kate and eat with her and Ava. Mia had fallen asleep, it had been a long day for her and so Carrick lifted her off the sofa with ease and carried her to the car. When his parents had disappeared, Christian told the kids to go and shower and prepare for bed, ready for school in the morning, noticing that Phoebe had already disappeared. He smiled gently.
"What are you smiling about, sir?" Ana asked, seductively.
"Hmm, plenty of things. Right now though, our children are getting ready for bed at eight in the evening, they've been fed and watered for the night and your bedtime's not for another two hours, Mrs Grey." She grinned and let him carry her up to their room and locking the door. They were very lucky that their children's rooms were on the other side of the house.
After some sweet, romantic love-making, they bid goodnight to their children and went to bed, both having wonderful dreams of their family living together happily.
That would all change tomorrow...
... ... ...
I know it was Nick's birthday but I made it more about Phoebe and I am sorry for that. I may have given her so many brothers but they're meant to be more minor. The next chapter gets more interesting ;D
Thank you for the reviews:
Let me know what you thought, also what you think is wrong with Mia D