Ana was surprisingly okay with the idea of a sixteen year old girl staying with them for a few days.
Technically Ana wasn't even living with him, though he couldn't actually remember the last time she had gone back to her own apartment.
Grace had spoken to Jess for a long time, making sure she was okay with the idea of staying at Christian's. She'd vaguely agreed and it was clear that Christian was someone she trusted, and she'd be okay to stay there for a few nights.
She was still shell shocked from seeing her injuries, changing slowly into some clothes that Taylor had brought somehow from a shop nearby.
Even Christian didn't question how Taylor had brought three or four tops, a pair of jeans and some pyjama shorts that all fit Jess perfectly, despite the fact it was the middle of the night.
She gingerly changed into the dark grey jeans and the black long sleeved top before following Christian, Ana and Taylor out to the car park. Jess was silent, looking towards the floor and not at any of them, the three adults all noticed however that she stayed close to Christian, practically glued to his side through the whole walk.
They all knew why, she felt uncomfortable outside of the hospital and trusted Christian implicitly.
At the car, Jess caught a sight of herself and all the bruises and cuts in the window. Seeing her falter, Taylor placed a hand gently on her back, voice comforting 'it'll heal, you'll move on from this'.
She nodded and sat awkwardly in the back next to Christian, staring vacantly out of the window.
At Escala, Jess still said nothing, walking slowly up to the elevator, looking at the ground pointedly. She looked physically ill when she walked into Christian's apartment, which Ana was confused about.
When she had first seen it, she'd been amazed with her jaw on the floor, Jess however looked like she was going to vomit, any colour that had been in her face well and truly gone.
'Jess?...are you okay?' she shook her head, glancing around at the impressive surroundings, her voice quiet 'I can't stay here, this place isn't for people like me'. Despite himself Christian rolled his eyes 'we aren't as different as you seem to think, do stop complaining. You can have the white and green room, it's got an en suite, I'll have some things brought to you in the morning'.
Jess was exhausted and once Christian and Ana had left her in enormous bedroom which was decorated with white and a fresh grassy green colour, she changed into the pyjamas Taylor had brought for her and was asleep within minutes.
Jess was awake before 6 in the morning, unsure of what she was supposed to do with herself. She didn't want to go into the bathroom or stay in her bedroom incase she got another accidental look in a mirror at her injuries, every time the memory was worse.
Instead, she got out of bed quickly and glanced around, not knowing what to do with herself. After a minute she decided to put her bra back on underneath her pyjamas and go out into the apartment.
She didn't really think that she would encounter anyone this early in the morning so didn't put on a dressing gown over her very short black shorts and the grey vest top that she'd slept in.
Jess was literally gaping at the apartment as she moved through, in awe at every piece of art, all the huge arrangements of flowers and the enormous tv, the clearly expensive sofas, the beautiful glass coffee table and the huge array of old, leather bound books everywhere.
As Jess wandered into the main room she muttered 'holy shit...' as she saw the enormous living room area and the open plan kitchen area also.
The woman standing in the kitchen making coffee smiled widely when she saw her 'you must be Jess, I must say I'm surprised to see you up this early'.
She blinked in surprise and said nothing 'My names Gail-'. Jess looked like something had clicked
'oh- yes, Christian told me that you're the one that makes everything work around here'. Gail laughed 'yes, I think he's probably right. Would you like some breakfast dear?'.
Jess bit her lip 'um, no thanks, I think i'll pass, I -'. Gail's stern look cut her off
'Grace, Elliot and Christian Grey have all given me instructions to make sure you heal properly, if any of them find out I've let you miss the most important meal of the day, I'll have the three of them to deal with. What do you want to eat?'.
Jess blinked in surprise and shrugged 'anythings better than hospital food'. Gail looked thrilled and set to work, turning the radio on and opening the fridge.
Three quarters of an hour later, Christian and Ana came into the main room. Ana was dressed in a pencil skirt with a blue silk blouse and looked in a hurry, whilst Christian was in a pair of dark jeans and a white top, looking far more carefree.
Ana smiled at Jess, talking quickly 'hi, sorry, I've got to get to work- I've got a morning meeting and I'm already late leaving'. Gail handed her a muffin and a bag of lunch. 'Thanks, you're a life saver- I'll see you later Jess'. Christian kissed her quickly and Ana tottered off as fast as she could in her heels, late for work.
Christian turned and smiled slightly down at Jess and the two empty plates in front of her. 'Looks like you've enjoyed your morning'. She paled 'I, uh, Gail told me to eat something and-'. He held up a hand to stop her 'I wasn't having a go, frankly I think you're much too thin anyway, so I'll make sure Gail feeds you well'.
Jess said she was going to go back to sleep for a while and Christian had a few hours of business to attend to in his study, saying he'd wake her up for lunch. He'd chosen to work from home, not thinking it fair to leave Jess alone.
The first few calls were business and to his brother, he then called his father and his lawyer Cooper.
Christian was finishing up a conference call with Cooper in his study when he heard the gentle, light tones of classical music filling the apartment. A little confused, he followed the source of the music to the piano, where he was surprised to see Jess, who was playing a sweet, melodic tune that was somehow very uplifting. She'd done a long side plait in her long red hair, her side fringe down, and she was dressed again in the dark grey jeans and a purple vest top.
'That's a lovely piece, what is it?'. Jess dropped her hands and looked around at him like a guilty child, looking terrified 'I-um-it was open, and I just played- I don't know why- sorry'.
Christian waved a hand 'god no, it's fine, seriously you need to calm down sometimes Jessica. What piece was it?'. She looked surprised 'oh...I came up with it'. Christian blinked 'well I'm impressed, where did you learn?'.
She sighed 'A care home, one of the kids had a keyboard and taught me, I know it's not the same thing but I worked a few hours a week in a music shop a while ago, the owner let me mess around on the instruments'.
Christian smiled slightly 'well, play as much as you want. I always find it helps clear my head'. Jess nodded absently, running her fingers over the keys lightly.
Over lunch it was just the two of them, Gail had prepared a cous cous dish and left them to eat it alone at the breakfast bar. Christian sighed 'right...Jess...the thing is...I know you don't want to talk about what happened to you yet but do you want to get the police involved?'.
She shook her head, taking a forkful of food and looking thoughtful for a while. 'I'm not ready to talk about what they did...the hospital have photos...I just can't, you know, I can't talk about it'.
Christian sighed 'trust me, I understand that feeling more than you'd think'.
'Christian? I need to go back to my apartment at some point...all my things are there, everything I own. I mean, it's not much but it's my stuff'. Christian nodded 'I don't want you going there incase something happens, Taylor, Ryan and Sawyer can go if that's okay?'.
She nodded and they continued to eat until Jess spoke again 'thank you, by the way...you've done more for me than you needed to'. He waved a hand 'you don't need to thank me'.
'No, I do, you're the first person who's given a shit about me, and we're not even family. Someone like you could loose a lot from taking in a person like me'. He shook his head 'I think everyone deserves a second chance, god knows Ana's given me more than a few'.
It was at this point that Christian pulled a few sheets of folded paper out of his jeans pocket, looking a little awkward. 'Look, Jess, the thing is, someone in my position in my line of work could stand to lose a lot of you went to the press about my personal life. I'm not saying you would, but I'd feel comfortable if I knew for definite'.
He handed over a pen and the sheets of paper 'It's a form saying you won't go to the press, basically'. He was about to continue when she signed her name quickly on the last sheet.
Christian blinked in surprise 'aren't you going to even read it first?' she shrugged 'I haven't really got anything to sign away have I? I don't stand to lose anything'.
He sighed 'can you at least read it please, my fathers a lawyer, he'd kill me if he knew I'd let you blindly sign it'.'
Jess nodded slightly and he watched as her eyes moved incredibly slowly across the page, looking confused and going back to some words again. Christian ran a hand through his hair 'you don't have to do it so in depth Jess, I'm not trying to trip you up here'.
She nodded absently and then it dawned on Christian what was happening
'Jess...you can read can't you?'.
She didn't say anything, looking absolutely ashamed and embarrassed, hot angry tears in her eyes. Christian looked furious and she muttered an apology quietly, making Christian look shocked
'I'm not angry at you! For gods sake Jess it's not your fault! I'm annoyed that someone's let you get to 16 like this!'.
She swallowed 'I can read...just not very...well'.
She didn't know what to say, a little shocked by Christian's evident anger 'look, Jess, I don't know how long you'll be staying with me- if I had the decision you'd never go back into care- but I'm getting a tutor in tomorrow morning for you, okay?'. She nodded and looked a little calmed down.
The next morning Alex Gill dutifully turned up at Escala. He had tutored many of Washington State's most privileged children, and Christian knew him from when he'd employed him recently to tutor Taylor's daughter Sophie before a school entrance exam.
Christian was livid with the school and care systems that had failed the pretty, sharp witted teenager that he had taken in, but knew that Alex was probably the best person to put his trust in.
Alex was only two years younger than Christian and had graduated three years early from Harvard, and was fluent in three languages. Despite being the A-typical nerd all round, Alex was fairly attractive, with messy black hair, blue eyes, pale skin and a tall, athletic figure; he was also however, incredibly laid back, which made him very likeable.
After a few hours, Alex came into Christian's study 'Christian?' he nodded and Alex came further in, sitting down opposite him.
'So, Jess...Well she's smart, I can tell you that. She might not be able to read very fluently but verbally she's well above her years, her writing isn't terrible either. She's very, very self deprecating, I'd assume she's never had much positive encouragement over the years to be honest. Musically she's also very talented, I'm not easily impressed as you know, but she's got a very natural ability'.
Christian leant back in his chair 'so you think you can help her?'.
Alex nodded 'I'm sure I can work my magic. If I was going to tutor her though I'd want to focus on a broad range of subjects, she's clearly missed out a lot of things both academically and generally, things like art and music should be studied in her case definitely. With one to one tuition even if it's only a few days a week you can see a huge improvement'.
Christian nodded, thinking deeply.
'She's very keen to make you proud of her Christian, that much was very clear'. Christian felt his heart swell, being reminded of how he himself had been when he'd first come to the Grey house as a child, maybe he had a bigger heart than he thought.
Let me know where you want this to go. Jess gets a romantic interest/runs away/is taken back into care/goes missing/none of the above (then tell me what you want lol). I've already mapped out the next few chapters though.
Please review and let me know what you think.
Thanks for reading x