One of the newcomers stands very still. There is so much tension in his body that he frightens me. I can feel the anger radiating off him in waves. His whole stance is making the other two look like rank amateurs. The other, my trainer’s assistant, crosses the floor and talks to my trainer. I can’t hear them and I can’t see them but I know that there is a meeting of minds going on. The other man holds all of my focus and I feel my pussy fairly flood with anticipation. God, I wish Ethan was here. I also wish that the angry man would step out of the shadows and into the light so I can see his eyes. I hear a door open and close behind me and the two other men are gone.
“Get your tail down, Silver. There won’t be any bulldozing.” She turns to Elliot. “Honey, if I know my girl she’ll be eating sorrow by the spoonful. Sam and I are gonna have to go in there and rattle her cage a little. Try and get her back in the same room as the rest of us. But before we go over there, when was the last time you ate, darling?”
Yep, she’s gone bona fide Texan on our asses. She tries, fruitlessly, to shovel food into Elliot who still looks like he’s lost his best friend. Shell-shocked would be an accurate description and I hope like hell I never find myself in his shoes. Just the thought of it has me longing for Mia and I start to finger my phone, trying to get another text to her. It’s been less than a week but I don’t think I can stand another night without her.
“What trip?” Elliot walks into the kitchen where we are standing. His progress is painfully slow but he insists on staying on his feet as much as he can manage when we are at home. He begins lurching from bench to refrigerator in a practiced move as he gets himself a drink and a snack. Mike hovers at the ready but Elliot makes it look easier than I know it is. There have been a couple of times when he has fallen, unable to get up in the middle of the night and we’ve struggled to move him. I know I’m frowning as I consider all the implications of us going right now and weigh them up against what could happen if we don’t. In the end the only person who can make this call is Elliot.
“Honey, Christian thinks we should get to Haiti, now.”
A big shout out to Glory2Bee who was the first person I read on Fanfiction to use the term ‘The Compound’ to reference Christian and Ana’s mansion.
“Hey dork, how’s it hanging?” I scowl at him. “What no pithy comeback? You’re losing your edge, Lelliot.”
“Fuck off, Chris.” He’s right. The bromance is gone and taken my witty banter with it.
“Don’t be a prick. I come baring news and I need to see you put your game face on.” I don’t know if he gets it but unless he is going to give me news on a miracle pain cure and a ten day plan to get my weak as piss legs back, then I actually couldn’t give a fuck.
“Say it and then get the fuck out. My dance classes are about to start.” I wheel myself over to the free weights as a signal to him that the visit is over. Prick doesn’t take a hint. He stalks over behind me and grabs the wheelchair handles spinning me around to face him.
“You’re an ass, Elliot. Don’t make me kick you.” He glares at me. Instead of taking the warning I push back away from him and turn around again reaching for a 60lb dumb bell, wanting for the world to turn around and throw it at his head. “Linc’s been released.”
The crop slides down my tethered arms, tracing a feathery line from elbow to armpit and down over the swell of my breast, eliciting an involuntary shiver. My masked face drops backward sightlessly gazing at the suspension hook. The leather sensation has me sucking in my breath, a bead of sweat forming between my breasts. I imagine my tormentor is him and the moisture of longing pools between my thighs. God, I want this.
“You betray yourself, Mia.” Her voice, a harsh reminder that the apple has not fallen far from the tree.
“How is she really?” I scrape food off the plates before loading the dishwasher. Christian dismissed Gail long ago saying that we would handle the clean up. Since Elliot and Ana prepped it seems only fair that Christian and I clean up, given our lack of any real skill in the kitchen. Yet another trait we share.
His hands grip the bench. “She’s so fucking strong. You know she tried to go back to work yesterday.”
“Doesn’t surprise me. Can’t keep a good woman down.” I want to make light of it but Christian’s mood won’t allow for that.
“I was so fucking scared, Kate. My whole world revolves around her and I will never forgive myself for such a colossal fuck up.”
I place my hand over his. “Christian, you didn’t ask for this. Sure you could have been more together about the baby but would it really have made any difference? Jack pushed the one button Ana couldn’t ignore. Family. She would walk through fire for someone she loves. That wasn’t your fault.”
“Not what you thought on the weekend.”
“Yeah, well, you were an ass. I didn’t know the rest.”
“Kate, I really am sorry for your loss. If I had known…”
“Don’t sweat it. Believe it or not, your insensitivity pushed me in a direction I needed to go. Scared the crap out of Elliot but in the end it actually helped. I know it’ll piss you off no end, but I think you might have inadvertently saved me.”
He regards me for a while. He doesn’t need to ask what I mean by that statement. He’s obviously been there a time or two himself.
“You know, Kate, I don’t hate you.” News to me, Grey.