Missy's notes: and so we've come to what they call, a full circle (my apologies to nuwriter, there really isn't a word for it). Thank you for your never ending support. You guys made the 'stories' I call, quirks, into a one hell of a creative writing lesson (if you read the first few chapters of my first story, ADSOS, you know what I'm talking about) and for that I am truly grateful. I appreciate all your reviews, inputs, follows, favorites and even personal messages. Enjoy! Oh and please, forgive my errors.
PS.: My apologies, I unwittingly forgot to put my quote to open chapter 19, it's another Lau Tzu (sorry, but I thought its perfect for the theme of the chapter), so I went in and did the little addition. Thanks to heycomputer for catching that little boo-boo.
E L James owns this amazing trilogy (that we all love).
Finale: The long and winding road
"… And that is how change happens. One gesture. One person. One moment at a time." ~Libba Bray, The sweet far thing.
New York City – October 2017
GEH started as an IT and telecommunications manufacturer. From there, my company expanded to building and manufacturing different equipment's in different fields such as transportation. When the US economy dropped, I decided to explore the idea of buying ill managed and ailing companies, nurturing them back to their feet, turn the negative into positive and then selling them to the highest bidder. The business of mergers and acquisitions turned my small manufacturing business into an empire and now I have everything. Naturally, like any other entrepreneur, I want everything; I want to expand my horizons and acquiring RHB Media Inc., will be a suitable addition. The only snag is a little known company based in Europe that the RHB owner, Mr. Burton, recently visited.
Robert Howard Burton owns RHB Media Inc., is one of east coast's biggest independent Media and Publication Company. It is engaged in the production, publication and marketing of all things entertainment, news, lifestyle magazines and information products and services to a global customer base for its media publications division and the entire East Coast for its television and media division. RHB media is a formidable business based in the heart of Manhattan where it was founded, owned and controlled by a formidable individual for some twenty years. Mr. Burton recently announced that he is planning to retire and live a quiet life back to his hometown in Britain, with his wife and their pets. With no heirs to his empire, Mr. Burton has no choice but to sell the company before pursuing the quiet life. Companies naturally lined up in front of RHB's office the moment the news about his retirement came out, everyone wants to get their hands on such profitable and not to mention well managed company, something that is very hard to come by these days. The problem is Mr. Burton, known to many as RHB, has been very picky with the people he wants to talk to and has flat out refused to talk to anyone from bigger media companies, private entrepreneurs and other enterprise who approached him. That is until he went on a business trip to London for the first time since building his empire. Anyone with the right mind can fucking guess who he fucking paid a visit to, I know, I do.
"You think he'll listen?" Ros mutters, breaking me out of my reverie. We are sitting inside one of the executive conference rooms at the RHB Media's headquarters in New York City where Ros and I are waiting to meet with the Mr. Burton.
"He agreed to meet us, Ros," I say coolly. "If he isn't interested, then he would've flat out refused," I add. It's true; it took a lot of explaining and persuasion on my part, but in the end, I got the old man to agree to meet me in person.
"True," Ros acquiesces. "Although it would've been perfect if you managed to invite him in Seattle, rather than us flying to meet him here in New York," she adds pointing out what a certain publishing company based in London was able to do: expertly herding the sheep into its lair.
"Pessimism will take us nowhere, Ros. We have a shot here, we'll take it and we're not leaving here until we get what we want," I mutter, just as the doors open and in comes Mr. Burton, a tall man in his mid-seventies, according to Welch's executive summary, followed by a man I recognize as his legal counsel, Martin Fitzgerald.
"You mean until we get even with Norwood & Steele, of course," Ros murmurs under her breath while keeping eye contact with the two men approaching us, with Mr. Burton brusquely in the lead. Tit for tat; the alluring CEO of Norwood & Steele took something that I've been working on for years, it's only fair that I stall her coming out party, by taking the company that would put her to the US map permanently. She's also the reason to your sleepless nights and withdrawal from your kinky lifestyle, isn't she, Grey?
"Mr. Grey, Ms. Bailey, Welcome," Mr. Burton greets us in his distinct British accent, as he motions for us to take our seats. "This is Martin Fitzgerald," he adds, motioning to the man behind him who nods.
"Mr. Burton, Mr. Fitzgerald, thank you for having us," I reply courteously.
"Right, let's get on with this," Mr. Burton nods as he takes his seat directly in front of me, his eyes narrowed. "You are here to try to sway me into selling, yes?" he adds brusquely, directly diving into the point, a trait he is mostly known for.
"That's the idea," I reply.
"I thought I already told you that while you presented a great offer —"
"You would like to take your time because you want to find the best enterprise capable of taking care of this company," I say, finishing his words for him. "Grey Enterprise Holdings is a multi-billion dollar conglomerate, Mr. Burton. I can assure you that it is more than capable on taking care of your company and your legacy," I add, finishing his words and diving straight to my point. The reason why he refused the big companies is simple: the old man thinks that they are all about the money and to a man like Mr. Burton, legacy is lasting; money is only secondary.
"There's no denying that your company is one of the most profitable, Mr. Grey, the question is: are you the right company?" says the statuesque man, after regarding me shrewdly, a feat that somehow reminds me so much of my father. If this were an ordinary M&A meeting with an ordinary company, I would've been insulted by his remark and walked away with a threat that I will find a way to get this company in a different way, or walk away without a backward glance and set my eyes on a better business venture. But it isn't; it's neither. On one hand, I can do well without it; there are a lot of fish in the ocean. On the other, though there are quite a lot of fish in the ocean, I still prefer RHB because of its profitability and because acquiring it will open new doors for my company and more importantly, I get my revenge from that company who thwarted my deal with Kavanagh media. You mean you can tell her that you don't want her to mess with you, Grey.
"I'm confident to say that we are, Mr. Burton. Grey Enterprise Holdings has a strong and stable portfolio. It is more than capable of managing, improving and more importantly, its more than capable of continuing the success that you started many years ago. RHB will be in capable hands, Mr. Burton, should you decide to sign with GEH."
"It also has a track record on buying and selling companies, Grey, the very reason why I rejected your first proposal."
"That is why I decided to personally handle this deal, Mr. Burton. I want to reassure you that we are treating this case differently," I say on my best persuasive yet professional tone. Right. This deal is different because you don't want the old man to sell to that company in London with its exquisite CEO. I cringe internally at the thought. "This isn't just another business acquisition. GEH is looking to expand to media. it already has one of its feet inside the door, so to speak, as we manufacture telecommunications equipment and provide services to media companies. We believe it's natural to continue by expanding and taking things to the next level."
"So you are telling me that GEH is expanding to media," Mr. Burton says in a tone I recognize as uncertainty. Yes.
"That is the plan. I think you and I can agree that RHB is the perfect fit. RHB media already has the foundations to explore and expand. The GEH portfolio on the other hand, expands beyond the United States and with the two combined, the possibilities are endless. I'd like to emphasize that a strong company such as yours needs a robust company to handle the expansion, to make it global; not stagnant. Most of all, you need a strong team to takeover and take care of you and your wife's legacy. Entrusting amateurs to do this is rather… risky, to put it mildly," I say, going for the kill by voicing the lead competitor's weakness: inexperience. Let's face it, though what she's done is impressive, there's no denying that the lovely Norwood & Steele CEO they all call Lady Midas is still a classified rookie. Yeah; she managed to steal Kavanagh Media under your nose, very rookie indeed.
"You think you're better than the company I have in the running," Mr. Burton responds, correctly reading my thoughts.
"I don't know what you're talking about, Mr. Burton," I lie coolly. "Sure, I'm aware that there is competition, but I could care less about their plans. All I know and care for is that I am here to tell you that signing with GEH will ensure your company's future. Now, what's it going to be?"
London – February 2018
The tail-end of winter in London is daunting: It's chilly and frigid and I hate it. It's either rain or snow. The daytime temperatures can go from cold in the morning to freezing by night. It's either rain in the morning and then snow at night or the other way around. But one thing is for sure: it's always cold and gloomy, just like my mood lately – well, for the past few months to be exact. Cold weather aside, my life here in my adopted city has been nothing but comfortable; pleasant even. I couldn't ask for anything. I have my adopted family and friends, then I have my parents and friends back home, who all manage to keep in touch with me, despite the time difference and the distance. Of course they all question the fact that I am living alone in a big city and the fact that I have an empty dating life, but frankly, I really don't need it. I love the big city and I don't mind being alone. My last serious relationship was Rupert, if I can really call it a relationship. Ours was more like partnership and companionship, as against a loving hearts and flowers kind of relationship, and we both know it.
'You mean to say, you both love people you cannot have and you both don't mind faking it, every single time,' my subconscious cackles mirthlessly.
I roll my eyes at the thought; oh well, at least Rupert and I are still close friends. My next relationship after Rupert was a mistake and everyone including my ex-boyfriend-turned-best friend knows it. Again I shudder at the thought of that boo-boo. Why I succumbed to Philippe's bad-boy charms and why I didn't see the fact that he only wanted my business portfolio is beyond me. Either way; I'm going to have to suck the fact Rupert will take his time rubbing my little mistake in my face whenever he pleases and that my dating life is pretty much over. I give up; I will perpetually become a hag for the rest of my days. Oddly enough, I'm okay with it, I think; and I think I know why. It's all because of him, the man who pushed me away all those years ago. The very reason I left everything behind in Seattle and start a new life somewhere far away. The very reason why I am who I am at the moment, and the reason why I don't ever want to go back home, ever. I stare unseeingly at the rainy view of London below me, hating the cold weather, or the fact that it reminded me so much of Seattle or maybe because of what happened on the same month, same time of the year six years ago?
'All of the above,' my subconscious answers.
Wow. It's been six years since that night, yet I can still remember it like it just happened yesterday. I can still see his face; his frozen reaction and the words I said. I can still picture the change of his demeanor, from warm and playful affection to cold and distant, all in one click. In an instant, I've gone to hoping that the man I loved will love me in return to… suffering – physically and emotionally. Change really is fascinating. One minute I'm sitting with the man I love, the next minute I'm pouring my heart out by accidentally telling him what I really feel about him, to being punished and pushed away; to waking up feeling gutted and heartbroken when he ended things and then running away with a promise of never returning, to finding a new life somewhere else. Just living, healing, learning, growing and evolving thanks to the time and distance. Yet even with the time and distance, still, can't help but wonder, even with all the changes that happened to me, why do I find myself thinking about him? Why do still find myself hating what I've done? Why do I find myself hating and avoiding him when I should've moved on and accepted the mistakes that I made and what he's don't to me? I mean, it's been six years for crying out loud. My subconscious just rolls her eyes and stares at me mutinously as if telling me that I've gone overboard, yet again.
'If he is popping up when least expected with attempts of stealing your business prospects, then you can't really call that going overboard. Going overboard is the reminiscing bit, Steele; it's sickening, so snap out of it!' my subconscious snaps.
I let out a sigh. Grey Enterprise Holdings decided to talk to Mr. Burton the moment he returned to New York after meeting with me and Alex to start the negotiations. GEH must've given Mr. Burton one hell of a deal for him to take his time on deciding whether or not choosing my company or GEH. Mr. Burton refused any efforts from me or Alex to talk, preferring to communicate via conference calls and emails if he had questions, which is killing me.
Part of me wants this deal to materialize, badly. If Mr. Burton really wants to make things right with our common denominator, Sara, who he felt like he abandoned long ago, like what he told me, then he should've signed the dotted lines the moment I sent him my proposal. While the other part of me is a jumble of emotions: one part says it okay – that I can wait for the next deal; while one part, the competitive part is not. In fact, it is outranged to the point of asking Frank to find out who dared challenged my deal and make sure to go all out. But when the company GEH came out, with his name on helm, Christian Grey… yes, I felt outraged to the point of opening all the folders Frank collected in his years of researching about him, which I know is crazy, that combined by everything that comes to mind at the mere mention of his name. And then there's the feeling unease and uncertainty; maybe he can take RHB, maybe I'm better off staying in London, where it's peaceful; where I'm free of him. Maybe I'm not ready to go home – no – I don't think I'll ever be ready. Jeez, all these thoughts makes me want to throw up.
'I'll say. I already told you, Steele; it's sickening, so do yourself a favor and snap out of this shit!'
"There you are," Alex announces when he barges into my office for our routine meeting and thankfully steering me away from my wayward thoughts. "Grimmaldi and his group signed the papers, I have the soft copy and the originals are on their way via courier service as we speak. Grimmaldi SpA is officially N&S Italy subsidiary, thanks to your now-or-never deal with Antonio Grimmaldi," he adds, starting the meeting on a good tone, as he takes his seat and starts arranging the stacks of documents for me to review.
"Grimmaldi needed an ultimatum, he's wasting everyone's time," I respond, my eyes still glued at the gloomy London weather. The flipside of the coin is my career. I've got no qualms with the amount of opportunities and success coming my way. Business in Europe has skyrocketed ever since my team took over the Brown Group. We've managed to acquire a few more high profile publishing house as well as adding a couple of media companies to our portfolio or the little empire, as me and my COO likes to call it these days. We anticipated resistance once the Brown takeover was done, resistance from greedy businessmen like Grimmaldi. I roll my eyes. Work, Steele; focus on work, I tell myself. My subconscious rolls her eyes but thankfully approves.
"What about Hatier and Associates before that?" Alex asks, the glint in his eyes telling me that I'm fooling no one. "I mean, don't get me wrong, we got the deals that we wanted and it's all good. Having said that, patience has always been one of the things I love about you, my dear," he adds.
"It's one of those days, Alex," I retort dismissively, as I turn my back from me favorite view and join Alex to the mini conference table.
"I know. You're not the only one going impatient with Burton's stalling," Alex says, pursing his lips, a trait that I associate when he is excited.
"Out with it, Alex," I say mulishly, as I take my seat, aware that I'm acting a tad immaturely.
"We're one step closer to closing Alberta, you just need to review this and let me know if you want to add something," he says, dismissing my inquiry as if nothing happened. I scowl, while he rolls his eyes. "Stop that. You look like a teenager; I won't tell you until you stop sulking and PMS-ing. This isn't you, Ana, if the hag was here, she will tell you to get some tea, munch on a box chocolates and take a hot bath to relax."
"She isn't, thankfully. I'll need something stronger than tea," I snap. Wine or vodka or both will do the trick.
"You're right; she isn't, but I am," he smirks. " Moving on, I'm sending you a list. It a list of media groups and publishing companies based in California. I need you to review the recommendations and analysis I made, so we can proceed with—"
"We lost it, did we?" I say, my stomach dropping. Despite the mix emotions, I oddly feel disappointed, partly for losing the battle with a bigger company and to him, but mostly because of what Mr. Burton said about my mentor, Sara. "I wish he at the very least, sent me a notice or something."
"Dear lord, I guess I was right, you haven't read any of your emails in the past hour, didn't you?" Alex says, pursing his lips to keep himself from laughing. He stands up, walks to my table and retrieves both my laptop and Blackberry, from where I've been ignoring them for the past hour. Why I've been ignoring them, I don't know.
"What are you doing?" Iask, when Alex walks back to his seat and he opens my laptop in front of me.
"Clearly you've decided to do some meditation, as you've zoning out, yet again," Alex says, his smirk and excitement barely hidden.
"Lunch hour, Alex, even I am permitted to a little break," I say surly. "This is clearly good news?" I add dryly, when he eagerly starts my laptop, click a few buttons with the touch screen and open my Outlook email.
"See for yourself and decide," he says, with a satisfied smirk after scrolling through my email and handing my laptop back to me. Scowling, I take my laptop and start reading, conscious that my eyes begins to bulge out my eye sockets, as I read through the entire email. Oh my…
"Unbelievable," I say, my jaws dropping as I gape at Alex who is smiling toothily.
"No, more like, we got this and let's celebrate."
Seattle – End of February 2018
"I already told you, Elena, I'm not in the fucking mood!" I thunder when she calls me to tell me for the umpteenth time that she has a possible prospect for me. Elena and I reconnected at one of my mother's partyafter the London incident and she has since provided me three of the five submissive. After finding out that I currently don't have a submissive, she started hounding me into meeting possible candidates she thinks will fit the bill and I've continually shunned her efforts because frankly, none of them will ever fit the bill. Only one and she isn't fucking here.
"Christian, why do you think you're in such a bad mood lately? Look, I don't know how long it's been since you last entered you playroom, but this has to stop. You need to release the tension otherwise; I shudder to think what you employees think—"
"I don't give a flying fuck what people think, Elena. I said no, and if you don't fucking understand English then you better go back to school."
"Jesus Christian, is that how you treat your friend?"
"No. this is how I fucking treat people who won't stop nagging, Elena and I swear to Christ, if you don't stop," I say in my death calm voice.
"Fine, I'll wait until you're relaxed. I care about you, Christian, you know that; I just want you to be happy."
"Then don't fucking meddle," I say, snapping the phone shut just as Taylor opens the doors in front of Grey House. I let myself out of the car and stomp my way to the nearest of elevator, all the while ignoring the stares and scurrying from the people around me. If Elena called yesterday to nag me about a new submissive, well I still would say no, but at the very least, refused the offer calmly, instead of lashing out. Unfortunately for her, she is on the receiving ends of my fury because as of last night, Burton has officially handed his company over to Norwood & Steele. Instead of choosing GEH, Burton has chosen a company from his native country to take over his legacy. He's chosen an amateur or rather; he listened to Norwood & Steele's alluring CEO. The worst part of losing is that, this is the second company that the said CEO has managed to steal from me. Round two goes to Ms. Steele, again. I hate losing. I. Never. Lose. Especially from a rookie and most especially from an ex-submissive. There's always a first, isn't it, Grey?
The elevator opens to the executive wing, where Ros and the rest of the team are nervously waiting. The weary looks on their faces tells me that Ros has already warned them about my mood which is good because firing someone or everyone in my team won't be satisfying. Nothing will be. I take a deep steadying breath in an effort to control the anger, not fucking working. Taking a seat at the head of the table, I try taking another deep breaths and this time, mentally calculating my options, the shit I should do to release the tension and anger while waiting for my team to get settled into their seats. I morbidly consider Elena's offer, oddly enough, I shudder at the mere thought so, no – I've had enough. The next viable option is either calling Flynn for a meeting or Beating the shit out of my trainer Claude or both. I decided on the latter. Flynn would be proud, Grey, now start the meeting.
"So…" Ros starts, her tone seriously pissed. She should, she worked her ass off on this deal. Well, not as pissed as I am but close enough.
"You were copied on the email, Ros, you tell me, we fucking lost the deal," I respond, satisfied at the collective winces from everyone in the table.
"You're not the only one pissed about this," Ros snorts.
"I'll say," I say, deathly calm.
"How do you want to proceed? My best guess is they have a month."
Good question, how do I proceed? Burton is a man of his word. Chances are zero to negative one. Burton is the type to change his mind; he won't be swayed once he reached a final decision. The only option is to move on and accept the defeat and make absolutely sure this shit never happens again. That's another first, Grey.
"Steer clear of the east coast until further notice. Focus on Cal Media and other media groups here and in California. Double our stocks with CMC, I don't give a fuck how you do it, I want it done STAT. If they're working targeting boutique groups then RHB won't be the last."
"Agreed. We'll get right on it," Ros says, scribbling on her note pad. "What about Norwood & Steele?"
I don't reply; I just shoot my COO a glare, to which she studiously ignores. If this was an ordinary GEH employee, he or she would've been fired. But even with anger, I can still see reason, Ros is lucky she's irreplaceable.
"I'm just as pissed as you are, Grey, I want payback. Now, what do we do with them?"
"We'll talk about what to do with Norwood & Steele, when my head is not about to fucking explode." I say calmly. "Shelve them for now, but keep eyes and ears on them though and I want to be there when the Norwood & Steele ship arrives."
London – March 2018
"Are you still a bitchy hag?" Rupert says when he answers my call.
"Not really; you're obviously still a cow," I say with a chuckle. "I got your email," I add as I board the SUV with Frank on the driver's seat.
"Good. I have a feeling you'll like this one," Rupert says, confidently. I roll my eyes.
"You said that to the other properties, cow!" I say skeptically. Rupert has been helping me look for a property to two of my favorite places in the world: Cannes and London. We easily found the first property in Cannes on my birthday, after just two days of looking, it needs quite a few renovations and I've since enlisted the architect that Rupert also recommended to design and oversee the restorations. After a few back and forth on the design and what I wanted, the construction is finally scheduled to start early spring and will take a couple of months to finish. I can't wait to take my parents there for a visit.
Finding the right property in London was the real challenge. Looking for the right property in the right neighborhood, close to work; with the right size to fit my family and friends in one roof, as well as satisfying my style preference: classic, homey and a touch of contemporary, has presented a huge challenge. So far, none of the properties that my estate agent presented fit the bill. It's either too small for my liking or way too big, too far of a commute or simply ugly for my liking. True; it's hard to put everything that I want into one property, unless I want to build it from the ground up, but I'm not giving up and I certainly won't settle for anything less. As the search dragged, the combination of work taking most of my time and energy, and the bad mood swings I suffered because of the RHB deal taking longer than expected, , the house hunting took a bit of a backseat. Until of course, I was able to get rid of the bad mood and the deal with RHB hass finally… come into fruition, to put it mildly.
"That's because you've been so damn picky, woman!" he retorts. "Look, trust Amelia, will you? She's the best Estate Agent there is and based on the pictures, I haven't seen the property in person but trust me, this one looks promising."
"How many times did you shag Amelia?" I say dryly, making him laugh.
"That's my girl. However, you may be my best friend, but I'm not telling," he chuckles. "And you don't want to start, because I haven't finished bashing your head for going out with that tosser Philippe!" he adds, making me groan.
"Touché," I say, rolling my eyes. "I saw the photos, they look good. I'm on my way, are you happy now?" I say, as Frank expertly drives through the London evening rush hour to meet the estate agent, Rupert recommended.
"Blissfully happy, hag, I have a feeling that this will be the one, so you better tell Frank to hurry."
"I said I'm on my way, didn't I?"
"Yes you did, which is good. It's the right property for you; it has everything you want and more, I think," Rupert says. "I can't wait to have dinner there with Carla," he adds merrily, Rupert adores my mom and the feeling is mutual. My mom never nagged me about anything but when she found out that Rupert and I ended things, well… she never let me hear the end of it.
"Right property with a cringe worthy price tag," I say dryly.
"Real estate is a good investment. You did tell Amelia not to worry about the budget and it's not like you can't afford it," He says. "Besides, you wanted everything: the space, good neighborhood with close commute, fully furnished with your preferred homey décor then prepare to pay the price, my dear hag."
"Right," I say dismissively rolling my eyes. It's true; I suppose I can afford it. "I'll let you know what I think, I have to go," I add when Frank pulled up in front of the property where Amelia is already waiting outside.
"Great. Call me if you need anything," Rupert says excitedly. "Oh and Ana?"
"What?" I ask, already guessing what he's going to say next. I'm betting on something about coming over and cooking. I wonder vaguely why they didn't call him a pig instead of a cow.
"I can't wait to eat some of your lasagna and Martha's lemon cake fresh off the oven."
The first thing I notice is the quiet neighborhood. It's a suburban neighborhood twenty minutes from the N&S Headquarters in Westminster. I can tell that this neighborhood is affluent, not only because of the price and the little research I made after receiving the email, but because of the perfectly maintained and restored Victorian family homes in various shapes and sizes. Houses – not apartment buildings, lining the streets with multiple luxury cars parked in front of each of the properties. Ignoring the fancy façade around me and focusing on deciding whether or not I finally found my piece of London, I turn to greet my estate agent politely and surveyed the equally exquisite exterior of the house. The house fits in the neighborhood; like the other homes, it has the old world architecture and timeless elegance. It has a gated driveway that could fit two cars and stone steps that lead up to the entrance. Its classic, understated yet beautifully put together. Wow.
"Shall we get inside, Ms. Steele?" Amelia asks, her hand holding the gate for me.
"Let's," I acquiesce, not knowing what's waiting for me on the other side, but whatever it is, something tells me that I'll like regardless.
Seattle – End of March 2018
"Sorry I'm late, traffic was horrendous and I over-slept a bit. While Kate the cat is away, Elliot the mouse will play!" Elliot announces gleefully as he joins everyone at my parent's dining room in Bellevue for the mandatory Sunday barbeque date that my parents planned to kick start the spring. Sunday afternoons are family day and we are always required to visit my parents, especially now that Mia has officially decided to stay in Seattle for good, after travelling and working in France. Everyone chuckles at Elliot's theatrics, I roll my eyes, partly curious as to where my brother's girlfriends' whereabouts and partly indifferent. Who gives a damn? I don't, Katherine and I never see eye to eye. I still don't get what is it about her that made my oaf brother sees in Katherine that made him want to commit, for a very long time now.
"Why?" My mother asks a hint of surprise and worry in her eyes.
"Yeah, where's Kate?" Mia asks curiously. Christ. Who fuck cares? No loud boisterous know-it-all comments and not to mention, no phone calls and messages with the friend, that she always rubs to my face.
"Field trip, no worries mom, I did it," Elliot says with excitement and happiness glowing from his toothy smile.
"Huh?" is the general reaction. Well, at least for Mia and I. My parents merely stare at each other and smile which made Mia and I even more confused. I roll my eyes at the theatrics.
"Okay kids, settle down. My Fiancé is not here because she's been sent for a two week assignment and she will call in approximately five minutes to receive your congratulations," Elliot says, smiling toothily. "I proposed and she said yes!"
Someone I suspect Mia, lets out a squeal of delight. My mother and father merely looks lovingly at each other. Then everyone stands and rushes to give Elliot a hug and to congratulate him. I follow and offer my congratulations, offering my brother a handshake instead of a hug and brotherly punch in the arm.
"So what's the plan? Where is Kate? Why isn't she here?" Mia asks, firing questions, after questions as we take our seats.
"Whoa, chill baby sis! One question at a time," Elliot chuckles, raising his hands in the air in mock surrender. "No plans yet, I just proposed yesterday before she left. She isn't here because she's been asked by her boss to try to wheedle her best friend into giving her an interview. Kate said tough luck getting an interview from Ana, coz apparently she never grants any interviews. But Kate says okay, at least she gets to see Ana for the first time in six years and she gets to tell her that she is officially the maid of honor to our wedding." Elliot adds.
"Oh my God! Anastasia Steele, the media mogul. She's Kate's maid of honor?" Mia gasps.
"Yep. And Christian will be my best man," Elliot shoots me a wink. "If Ana agrees, mind you, Kate is confident she will, you will finally get to meet Kate's CEO BFF, little bro. And maybe, just maybe, you'll consider changing your single status," my oaf brother adds, chuckling and winking at the same time. But instead of falling for his usual banter, I don't say a word; instead, I stare mindlessly as I process Elliot's words. My attention is riveted at the facts before me. , One: the RHB deal is done and will be announced at any time. Two. Once the announcement has been made, Ms. Steele will have no choice but to cross the pond and leave her sanctuary. And three: if Katherine succeeds on making Ms. Steele agree to be her maid of honor, Ms. Steele – Anastasia – will have no choice but to face me, several times, and I plan to take full advantage of it.
More notes from missy: And so it goes… we've come to a full circle and then some ;-). The long and winding road that started with heartbreak has eventually reached the part where our favorite lovebirds' meets somewhere that leads both of them back to where they truly belong: in each other's arms (Sigh. Spoiler alert to those who haven't read ADSOS). I plan to edit ADSOS to correct and improve what needs improving (I can't stand it, lol) and maybe occasionally write a few one shots. Again, lots and lots of gratitude for the support and love from you guys who enjoyed reading my stories as much as I did writing them. Oh and to see my stories through pictures, look me up in Pinterest. Detail are on my author page. Now, let's concentrate of the sequel :-)