I wake up and the sun is blaring in my window. My head is foggy from lack of sleep and too much crying. I wish I had one more day before I have to start my new job but I have to move on with my life. I have to move on without Christian. I still haven't heard from him since I walked out of Escala. He didn't come after me or make any attempt all weekend to contact me and I am grateful because I don't think I could possibly face him without bursting into tears. 'Jesus Ana why did you ask him to do that to you. This isn't his fault it is yours for thinking that you could handle his lifestyle.' I wish Kate were here. She would know what to do. On second thought maybe it's a blessing she is gone because she would have his balls for breakfast if she knew what he did. In any case, it's time to get up and start your new job at SIP.
Fuck its 4:30 am. I haven't slept all weekend. I can't manage to eat much and everyone is on my last nerve. I pace the floor looking for salvation but it doesn't come. What can I do to make this up to her? My Anastasia. I miss her. I take the steps two at a time up to her bedroom. I look around in hopes she would magically be here but she isn't. I lie on the bed and try to pick up the remaining bits of her scent that is on the pillow but it's gone. She's gone. I will never get to hold her or tell her how I love her smart mouth. The thought of that makes me sad. She told me she loved me and I couldn't tell her that I love her back. Why couldn't I just say it? Why am I so fucked up? Duh Grey you know the answer to that. You are a fucked up son-of-a-crack whore that's why. You wouldn't know love if it was standing right in front of you. But I did know love. I knew what it was for someone to love me for me even if she didn't know how screwed up I really am.
I walk into the attached bathroom and find the last towel that Anastasia used before she left. It is crumpled on the bathroom counter and I sniff it in hopes that it will calm me a little but it just makes me miss her more. My knees give out and I find myself huddled on the floor deep in thought. How am I going to make this right?
I walk into SIP and I am greeted by a friendly receptionist who escorts me the HR office. There I meet with a lovely woman named Elizabeth who shows me around and brings me to my desk. My new boss Jack Hyde greets me and hands me a few manuscripts to read and give him reports on. I am eager to start but honestly my mind is elsewhere.
"Ana." Jack calls from inside his office.
"Yes Mr. Hyde." I say as I stand in his doorway.
"Ana can you please get me some coffee."
"Sure sir, how do you like it."
"Light and sweet just like my ladies." He snickers. I cold rush of discomfort runs through my veins. He is majorly creepy.
After getting Jack his coffee I return to my desk and finish up my day without any major distractions. I just have to take this one day at a time. I shut down my computer and as I am walking through reception Elizabeth calls out to me and gestures for me to come into her office.
"Ana. How was your first day?"
"It was fine thank you."
"And you and Jack are getting on ok." This suddenly felt like a test.
"Oh yes. He was fine. Why do you ask?"
"No reason dear. Listen, I have a favor to ask you and I don't want you to feel that you have to agree right away but how do you feel about traveling."
"Well I would like to travel more one day." I was very confused by her line of questioning.
Elizabeth giggles, "No dear, I mean for work. Would you be opposed to travel for work?"
"Umm..I guess that would be ok."
"Oh great. Listen we have a small sister company that we recently took over in New York. We would like for you to travel out there for a few weeks and be the assistant editors while the current employee is on maternity leave. Again, I don't want you to feel you need to say yes but I would like you to think about it. There is something to be said about the writers out there. It would be an excellent experience for you."
New York? What would Christian say? Who cares Steele…your not together anymore. Maybe the distance will help. "Yes, I would love to go. When do I leave?"
Elizabeth gets nervous and takes a deep breath in. "Ana, we need you to leave on Wednesday. I know this is short notice and again you can decline but the temp they had didn't pan out and the company is looking for one of our own to go out there and get acquainted with the place before we take over. This deal has been in the works for some time but now our funding has been frozen so hiring someone from the outside is no longer an option."
Wednesday…that's two days away. Whatever. Bite the bullet Steele. You have nothing here anyway. Kate is gone with Elliot and you are sitting in an empty apartment waiting on something that is never going to happen. Christian will never love you. He probably has a new sub by now anyway.
"Wednesday it is. Thank you Elizabeth. This is a great opportunity for me and I will do my best to exceed your expectations."
"Wonderful Ana. I am glad to hear it. Please take tomorrow off to get your affairs in order. I will email you your ticket and itinerary. And Ana, thanks again. This is a big deal and I have a feeling you will enjoy it out there in the big apple."
I shake Elizabeth's hand and head home. What a difference a day makes. I am very excited for my new adventure. I walk over to a nearby deli and pick up a sandwich before heading to the bus stop. I again think of what Christian will think of this little trip of mine. He will no doubt freak out when he finds out I left town. I can't think about that. I have to do what is right for me and move on. Big Apple here I come.