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choked. Oh, for heaven’s sake. “Of course not.” Of all the ridiculous things to say! I glare at her, aggrieved. How could she think that about herself? “Why is it odd?” she asks. “Because I’ve never done it before.” I sound irritable. “Why are you allowed to roll your eyes, and I’m not?” “I wasn’t aware that I was.” She’s calling me out. Again. “Neither am I, usually,” she snaps. Shit. Are we arguing? Taylor clears his throat. “Dr. Greene is here, sir,” he says. “Show her up to Miss Steele’s room.” Ana turns and looks at me and I hold out my hand to her. “You’re not going to come as well, are you?” She’s horrified and amused at once. I laugh, and my body stirs. “I’d pay very good money to watch, believe me, Anastasia, but I don’t think the good doctor would approve.” She places her hand in mine, and I pull her up into my arms and kiss her. Her mouth is soft and warm and inviting; my hands glide into her hair and I deepen the kiss. When I pull away, she looks dazed. I press my forehead to hers. “I’m so glad you’re here. I can’t wait to get you naked.” I can’t believe how much I missed you. “Come on. I want to meet Dr. Greene, too.” “You don’t know her?” “No.” I take Ana’s hand and we head upstairs, to what will be her bedroom. Dr. Greene has one of those myopic stares; it’s penetrating and that makes me a tad uncomfortable. “Mr. Grey,” she says, shaking my outstretched hand with a firm, no-nonsense grip. “Thank you for coming on such short notice.” I flash her my most benign smile. “Thank you for making it worth my while, Mr. Grey. Miss Steele,” she says politely to Ana, and I know she’s sizing up our relationship. I’m sure that she thinks I should be twiddling a mustache like a silent-movie villain. She turns and gives me a pointed “leave now” kind of look. Okay. “I’ll be downstairs,” I acquiesce. Though I would like to watch. I’m sure the good doctor’s reaction would be priceless if I made that request. I smirk at the thought and head downstairs to the living room. Now that Ana’s no longer with me, I’m restless again. As a distraction I set the counter with two placemats. It’s the second time I’ve done this, and the first time was for Ana, too. You’re going soft, Grey. I select a Chablis to have with lunch—one of the few chardonnays I like—and when I’m done I take a seat on the sofa and browse through the sports section of the paper. Turning up the volume via the remote for my iPod, I hope the music will help me focus on stats from last night’s Mariners win against the Yankees, rather than what’s happening upstairs between Ana and Dr. Greene.

E l james grey  

Fifty Shades of Grey