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Home > Fifty Shades of Grey (Fifty Shades #1)(5)

Fifty Shades of Grey (Fifty Shades #1)(5)
Author: E.L. James

"It's obvious, isn't it?" I'm uncoordinated, scruffy, and I'm not blonde.

"Not to me," he murmurs. His gaze is intense, all humor gone, and strange muscles deep in my belly clench suddenly. I tear my eyes away from his scrutiny and stare blindly down at my knotted fingers. What's going on I have to go - now. I lean forward to retrieve the recorder.

"Would you like me to show you around?" he asks.

"I'm sure you're far too busy, Mr. Grey, and I do have a long drive."

"You're driving back to WSU in Vancouver?" He sounds surprised, anxious even. He glances out of the window. It's begun to rain. "Well, you'd better drive carefully." His tone is stern, authoritative. Why should he care"Did you get everything you need?" he adds.

"Yes sir," I reply, packing the recorder into my satchel. His eyes narrow, speculatively.

"Thank you for the interview, Mr. Grey."

"The pleasure's been all mine," he says, polite as ever.

As I rise, he stands and holds out his hand.

"Until we meet again, Miss Steele." And it sounds like a challenge, or a threat, I'm not sure which. I frown. When will we ever meet againI shake his hand once more, astounded that that odd current between us is still there. It must be my nerves.

"Mr. Grey." I nod at him. Moving with lithe athletic grace to the door, he opens it wide.

"Just ensuring you make it through the door, Miss Steele." He gives me a small smile.

Obviously, he's referring to my earlier less-than-elegant entry into his office. I flush.

"That's very considerate, Mr. Grey," I snap, and his smile widens. I'm glad you find me entertaining, I glower inwardly, walking into the foyer. I'm surprised when he follows me out. Andrea and Olivia both look up, equally surprised.

"Did you have a coat?" Grey asks.

"Yes." Olivia leaps up and retrieves my jacket, which Grey takes from her before she can hand it to me. He holds it up and, feeling ridiculously self-conscious, I shrug it on.

Grey places his hands for a moment on my shoulders. I gasp at the contact. If he notices my reaction, he gives nothing away. His long index finger presses the button summoning the elevator, and we stand waiting - awkwardly on my part, coolly self-possessed on his.

The doors open, and I hurry in desperate to escape. I really need to get out of here. When I turn to look at him, he's leaning against the doorway beside the elevator with one hand on the wall. He really is very, very good-looking. It's distracting. His burning gray eyes gaze at me.

"Anastasia," he says as a farewell.

"Christian," I reply. And mercifully, the doors close.

Chapter Two

My heart is pounding. The elevator arrives on the first floor, and I scramble out as soon as the doors slide open, stumbling once, but fortunately not sprawling on to the immaculate sandstone floor. I race for the wide glass doors, and I'm free in the bracing, cleansing, damp air of Seattle. Raising my face, I welcome the cool refreshing rain. I close my eyes and take a deep, purifying breath, trying to recover what's left of my equilibrium.

No man has ever affected me the way Christian Grey has, and I cannot fathom why.

Is it his looksHis civilityWealthPowerI don't understand my irrational reaction.

I breathe an enormous sigh of relief. What in heaven's name was that all aboutLeaning against one of the steel pillars of the building, I valiantly attempt to calm down and gather my thoughts. I shake my head. Holy crap - what was thatMy heart steadies to its regular rhythm, and I can breathe normally again. I head for the car.

As I leave the city limits behind, I begin to feel foolish and embarrassed as I replay the interview in my mind. Surely, I'm over-reacting to something that's imaginary. Okay, so he's very attractive, confident, commanding, at ease with himself - but on the flip side, he's arrogant, and for all his impeccable manners, he's autocratic and cold. Well, on the surface.

An involuntary shiver runs down my spine. He may be arrogant, but then he has a right to be - he's accomplished so much at such a young age. He doesn't suffer fools gladly, but why should heAgain, I'm irritated that Kate didn't give me a brief biography.

While cruising along the I-5, my mind continues to wander. I'm truly perplexed as to what makes someone so driven to succeed. Some of his answers were so cryptic - as if he had a hidden agenda. And Kate's questions - ugh! The adoption and asking him if he was g*y! I shudder. I can't believe I said that. Ground, swallow me up now! Every time I think of that question in the future, I will cringe with embarrassment. Damn Katherine Kavanagh!

I check the speedometer. I'm driving more cautiously than I would on any other occasion. And I know it's the memory of two penetrating gray eyes gazing at me, and a stern voice telling me to drive carefully. Shaking my head, I realize that Grey's more like a man double his age.

Forget it, Ana, I scold myself. I decide that all in all, it's been a very interesting experience, but I shouldn't dwell on it . Put it behind you. I never have to see him again. I'm immediately cheered by the thought. I switch on the MP3 player and turn the volume up loud, sit back, and listen to thumping indie rock music as I press down on the accelerator.

As I hit the 1-5, I realize I can drive as fast as I want.

We live in a small community of duplex apartments in Vancouver, Washington, close to the Vancouver campus of WSU. I'm lucky - Kate's parents bought the place for her, and I pay peanuts for rent. It's been home for four years now. As I pull up outside, I know Kate is going to want a blow-by-blow account, and she is tenacious. Well, at least she has the mini-disc. Hopefully I won't have to elaborate much beyond what was said during the interview.

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