I am so sorry that this update took me so long. After I returned from my vacations it turned out that I am pregnant again and after my first three pregnancies went without any problems this one is very different, my blood pressure was so high that I was put on bed rest for nearly three weeks and I am still battling with this darn morning sickness that is really more like around the clock sickness, but anyway... here is chapter 26 and it will cover a topic that was requested many times...
"Mason James Grey, I said no!" Oh Lord, I remember as a child I vowed to myself that I would never be one of those moms who call their children by their full name if they do something they are not supposed to. But, here I am, one eye brow raised, index finger pointed and using my sons full name. Yet, my son couldn't care less and starts to pull Archie's fur again.
"That's it buddy, time out for you" I pick Mason up and put him into the playpen.
"Mama ... mamama ! MAAAA MAAAAA" I have to bite my lip to keep a straight face and stop myself from grinning like a loon. Mason hates it to be in his playpen, but he has to learn that he can't pull on Archie's fur. Our dog is a darling and would never hurt Mason, but it's still not right and I am afraid he will do the same thing when he sees another dog and ends up getting bitten. So, I started to put him in time out.
Christian thinks it's ridiculous since Mason is just 13 months old and doesn't really understand what he has done wrong, so he can't learn from it, but what else am I supposed to do? I told him no so often, the poor child probably thought his name is no. And time out works for him... well, until tomorrow when he starts the same thing again and I have to put him in time out again.
I look at Mason who has stopped calling me and is now giving me the cutest full on Mason Grey pout. Oh my, I could pick him up and kiss his tiny face all over, but I won't. Who would have thought that being a strict parent could be such a hard job. But, one has to play the part and it's not Christian. I thought with his control freakery being the strict parent would come natural to him... hah strict my foot! That little boy has him wrapped around his tiny finger.
Yesterday, I was having a ladies brunch and Christian took Mason with him to work. We agreed that I would stop by at Grey House after the brunch to pick Mason up and I was expecting to find Mason playing on the office floor while Christian was working. Instead I found both of them on the floor with Taylor playing with a train set. Well, Christian and Taylor were playing with it, Mason just happily watched them while munching on what looked like a chocolate cookie. If it wouldn't have been the most adorable sight, I would have been a little mad at Christian for giving our son a chocolate cookie, but I suppose I can't keep him from having unhealthy food from time to time anyway, so one cookie as a treat is okay.
"Maaaa maaaa!" Mason is trying to get my attention again and I swear he learned that look he is giving me from Christian. It's a little eery how he resembles his father personality wise, even though they are not biologically related. Thinking about this makes me wonder how our second child is going to be. I hope that he or she is going to be a little Christian mini-me. Mason looks a lot like me, huge blue eyes, dark hair and pouty lips... and I know that it would mean a lot to Christian to have a child that resembles his looks. So, I hope our second baby is going to look just like my beautiful husband.
I can't wait for our second baby, but I have to be patient. In the last four weeks we got all the legal stuff done and Judy has started with the meds she needs to take before the in vitro fertilisation can take place. Just two more weeks... boy, I'm nervous only thinking about it. So I try not to think about it all the time, but my mind keeps drifting back to it.
I need to get out. I decide before I start to go over all the things that could go wrong yet again, it is best to get out for a while. Christian has meetings all day, so I can't just stop by his office, but I know that Ethan has taken this week of work, so I will pay him a surprise visit.
"Come here baby boy, we are going to visit uncle Ethan" I say as I lift him out of the playpen.
"Da da!" he babbles looking at me expectantly.
"Daddy is at work, baby boy. We are going to visit uncle Ethan."
"No da da!" Wait a second, did my son just tell me that he wants to visit his daddy instead of Ethan? At least it is no surprise that the third word he can say is no, he hears that quite a lot.
"Okay, let's call Andrea so we can ask her if daddy can talk to us on the phone."
"Da da!" Did I mention that my son is as demanding as his father if he wants something?
I walk into Mason's nursery and sit down in the rocker with him on my lap. Taking my phone out of my pants pocket I dial Andrea.
"Grey Enterprises Holdings, Mr. Grey's office. Andrea Parker speaking, how may I help you?"
"Hi Andrea, it's Ana. Is Christian still in a meeting?"
"Hi, Ana, Mr. Grey returned to his office five minutes ago and his next meeting is not going to start for another twenty minutes. Do you want me to put you through?"
"Yes, thank you, Andrea."
"Your welcome" Five seconds later Christian is on the line.
"Hi baby, missed me already?"
"I always miss you when you are not with me, but it was actually your son who demanded to call you."
"Yes, I told him that we are going to visit Ethan and he told me 'No da da'"
"He did, really?"
"Yes, I am putting you on speaker now."
"Hey buddy, miss me?" Christian's voice comes over the speaker and before I can stop him Mason grabs the phone and starts to happily babble into the phone. I can't help but giggle when Christian talks to Mason as if he would totally get what our son is saying.
"Ana, I have to go now. Maybe the two of you can pick me up at Grey House later. We could have dinner in town."
"Sure, I want to visit Ethan anyway. We'll be there around 5:30 pm. Would you mind if I ask Ethan to join us?"
"That's fine, baby. See you later. I love you, both of you."
"And we love you." I hang up change Mason and 30 minutes later we are on our way to Ethan's apartment. Before Mason came into our life I was often a little pissed that Christian wouldn't allow me to drive... well he didn't exactly forbid me to drive, but if I wanted to drive one of my cars I always needed double security, usually Sawyer who was in the car with me and Ryan or Reynolds who would tail me. Because that felt ridiculous I decided only to drive on vacation, where Christian is a lot more relaxed about security.
Now, I am glad that Sawyer is driving me around. This way I can sit in the back with Mason and not have to watch the traffic while trying to entertain a very active one year old. I guess by now, especially as Mom I am really figuring out how privileged we are to have all the staff. I can dedicate all my time to Mason and Christian, while they make our every day life run smoothly.
"Do you want me to come in with you, Ana or do you want me to wait in the car?" Luke asks when he pulls up in the garage of Ethan's apartment building.
"You can come up with us, you know you don't have to wait in the car" I want to roll my eyes at Luke but stop myself. We get into the elevator and once we are at Ethan's floor I knock at his door.
He opens and grins taking Mason from my arms immediately. "Hey buddy, did you decide to visit your uncle Ethan and have some guy time? Come on let's get inside" he says and I clear my throat making Ethan smirk at me.
"Oh hey Ana, sorry, but my best buddy came to visit" he says with a wink and I follow him into the apartment but freeze when I see the blonde woman who is sitting on the sofa.
"Ana? Wow, you look so different. Is that your son?"
"I ... umm, hi Kate, yes, that's Mason." I murmur. Hell, so far I haven't met any of Christian's former subs... well not that I know of anyway, but this is really awkward.
"He is cute, so how are you doing" she says and I am still routed to the spot, but from the corner of my eye I see Luke sending a text message. My bet would be he is contacting Taylor.
"Oh, I'm fine... you?"
"Perfect, honestly leaving Seattle was the best thing for me. So, is your husband coming over too? I would love to meet The Christian Grey." Oh hell no, tell me she did not just say that.
"No, Christian is at work, I'm picking him up later, we want to have dinner in town."
"Really can we join you?" Ethan asks and inwardly I cringe. How am I supposed to get out of this?
"Yes, why not" I hear myself say before I can find a way out of it. Oh, Christian is going to be so pissed about this.
"Mrs. Grey, a word please?" Luke says looking all serious and I know that Taylor has replied to his text.
"Sure... umm Ethan will you watch Mason for a second?" I ask and step outside of the apartment with Luke.
"Mrs. Grey, I think it would be best if we leave now. Miss Kavanagh is on the proscribed list with people Mr. Grey does not want around you."
"He has a list?" Damn, why do I even sound surprised... my husband is a control freak.
"Yes, actually all of Mr. Grey's former umm lady friends are on that list."
I sigh and pinch the bridge of my nose. "Look Luke, Ethan is my best friend, and he has no idea what his sister was to Christian. If he finds out... and that I knew all along... let's just say he won't be happy about it. I don't think that Kate is up to anything, so if I call Christian now and talk to him, will that be okay?"
"Yes, Taylor is already..." Sawyer stops when my phone rings and the sounds of 'Your Love is King' fill the hallway, which is my ring tone for Christian.
"Thanks for the warning" I mutter and take the call.
"What the fuck, Ana. Why would you go and see her?" Christian hisses.
"Just so you know, Christian. I am rolling my eyes at you as we speak... and I had no idea she would be here. I can't just leave or else Ethan is going to ask questions. He is my best friend Christian and when he finds out... he will be so mad at me for not telling him. Please don't tell me that I have to leave, please?"
I hear him sigh deeply. "Fine, but I don't like it, Ana."
"I know and umm... Ethan kind of invited himself and Kate to have dinner with us."
"Fuck! Okay, fine, but she makes one wrong move and we are going to leave. I had a shitty day as it is Ana, I am not going to let one of my former subs fuck this day up even more."
"She won't... thank you, Christian. And maybe we can do something about your shitty day later. Imagine me tied spread eagle and blindfolded to the bed, completely helpless and at your mercy." I whisper the last part and hear him suck in a sharp breath.
"Sounds like we are having a date, Mrs. Grey. I've booked a table for us. I will pick you up around a quarter to six."
"Okay, I love you. Bye."
"I love you, too"
We hang up and I take a deep breath, I can do this! Luke and I go back to the apartment where Ethan is entertaining Mason.
"Hey Ana, everything alright?
"Sure, everything is fine, Christian will be here around a quarter to six to pick us up for dinner."
"Cool, would you mind if I take my little buddy out for a couple of minutes, there is a new ice cream shop just across the street, I thought I get us some, is he allowed to have ice cream?"
"Yes, but just vanilla and only a tiny scoop." I really don't want Ethan to leave me here with Kate, but I guess it will be good if I can talk to her alone for a second.
"Alright, what flavor do you want?"
"Something fruity, surprise me." He nods and asks Kate what she wants before leaving with Mason.
"So, how is New York" I ask Kate and she sighs.
"Look Ana, I know this is all kinds of awkward, but I want you to know that I really liked you back then, I was just in a miserable phase of my life and well in love with someone who wasn't good for me."
"Are you still in love?" I ask and she laughs.
"No, I mean, Christian is hot, but he was never mine and I don't chase after things that are impossible for me to get. In fact I have a boyfriend for 8 months now and I am very much in love with him. And before you ask, I am not the lifestyle anymore, it wasn't really my thing, but you know stupid things we women do to get the guy."
"Yeah well, I guess that is right. Are you going to tell Ethan the truth?"
"No, is that what you were thinking? That I am going to out you to be married to a Dom? I mean what ever floats your boat, right?"
She winks and I have no idea what to say. "Kate, I am not a submissive, never was never will be. Christian and I are equals."
"Okay, if that's what you tell yourself" she shrugs and slowly but surely I am getting really pissed.
"What ever, as long as you don't mention anything to Ethan I think we will get along just fine."
By the time Christian arrives to pick us up I am in desperate need of a drink, which is why I order a glass of wine as soon as we are in the restaurant.
I love this palace, it's a family restaurant near Escala and they have an extra menu for the kids including all sorts of food specially for babies and toddlers. Mason loves the food here and the high chairs which look like racing cars. He even has a little steering wheel and a horn, I think I have about two dozen pictures of him in one of these high chairs.
"He is such a cutie Ana and he looks a lot like you, I mean since he is not really your baby it's kind of weird." Kate says and I am ready to let her have it, but Christian speaks first.
"Miss Kavanagh, I can assure you this little guy is our son, not just legally because we adopted him, but also because we love him unconditionally. Believe me, most women can give birth and most men can impregnate a woman, but that doesn't make them parents, at least not in my mind."
"Oh, yes. I forgot, you are adopted, too. Well, it's a nice family tradition then, why did you decide to adopt anyway, afraid to gain weight?" Kate asks me and this time Ethan speaks up first.
"Kate, drop it. Ana can't have babies, that is all you need to know. Now can we please enjoy our meal?"
I look at Christian and I can tell that he had about enough, I can't really blame him. I know that Kate talks before she thinks, but telling us that our son isn't really our son just because he is adopted is way out of line. Thank God that I learned to keep my temper in check over the years or else I would have slapped her by now. At least now she looks a little contrite and for a while we just enjoy our food while Christian and I take turns in feeding Mason who is sitting between us in his much beloved high chair.
"So, since I kind of ran into the two of you, I am working on a series of stories about power couples, you know I visit them to do a home tour and show them in their every day life, are you interested?" asks Kate.
"Absolutely not, Ana and I like to keep our privacy, Miss Kavanagh."
"I wonder why that is" Kate murmurs and Christian glares at her. This is not going to end well.
"Excuse me?" he asks sharply and she gazes up at him, glaring.
"Nothing, look, I don't want this to end in a fight, so I will leave now. I don't wish either of you any ill will, but I merely asked for a little favor."
"Miss Kavanagh, I treasure the privacy of my home, it's one of the few places where my wife and I can just spend some relaxing down time, because if you haven't noticed even here the media is watching us" Christian says and sure enough there are about five paparazzi outside the restaurant watching us through the window. "The last thing I need is pictures of my home all over the tabloids, because that could turn into a security nightmare. If you need a new power couple for your series I am sure I can make some phone calls and get the Trumps or Gates to do it, but Ana and I are not available."
As soon as the names Trump and Gates came out of Christian's mouth Kate's jaw nearly hit the floor.
"Yo-You could do this?" she stammers. Maybe this evening doesn't turn into a disaster after all.
"Yes, but in return I want your promise not to hassle us about this again" Christian is staring at her intently and it's almost like he is sending her the message, that if he does that for her, she is not to ever cross paths with us again.
"Okay, sure. Here my cell number is on the card, just give me a call if you can make this work." Kate seems to be very excited and so we finish our meal in peace.
When Ethan excuses himself to use the bathroom Kate looks at us and takes a deep breath.
"Look, I know this is awkward, but I mean it. I wish the two of you all the best. I didn't mean to upset either of you tonight, but well... what can I say I am a bitch." Kate says and I can't help it I start to laugh.
"Sorry, but you still use that as an excuse?" I am still laughing as I ask her this, but even back when she was my roommate, she used that stupid excuse whenever she did or said something that was wrong.
"Can't hide the truth, right? But to be honest, I want to thank you, Ana. Ethan and I, well he always wanted us to have this strong sibling bond, but most of the time he simply annoys the hell out of me. You however have been the sister to him he always wanted to have. I have no idea how you keep up with his weird sense of humor and well, lets just say that there is a lot about my brother that irritates me, still I love him and I am glad he found a sister in you. So, before I get all uncharacteristically teary, just know that I am glad everything happened just the way it did. And don't worry I got the message, I won't come anywhere near the two of you again." she says and just then Ethan returns and we leave.
In the car Christian takes my hand and smirks at me. "Well, that was interesting evening. How do you feel about seeing her again?"
"Let's just say I am glad that she is not a permanent part of our lives. It's not that I don't like her, but having dinner with a woman who once had a relationship with my husband is not high on the list with things I enjoy to do."
"I get it, but luckily for you it won't happen again."
"I hope so" I murmur and lean my head against his shoulder.
"Don't tell me you are tired, baby. Because I was looking forward to what you had offered on the phone."he says and kisses the top of my head.
"Oh believe me, Mr. Grey I wouldn't want to miss that for the world. Once our little angel is sound asleep we will have some serious playroom time."
We grin at each other and I know this is going to be a long, long night...
Don't worry guys, the next chapter will start with Ana and Christian having a good time in the playroom... I hope those of you who wanted to see Kate one last time are happy with the way it played out, but to me there was no way to make her a friend of Ana and Christian, it would have been just too awkward...
Oh and to all of you who are from the U.S. Happy 4th of July!