But it's no use.
Christian threatened that he was going to lift me over his shoulder like the naughty little girl I am and carry me helplessly inside his Love Parlor/Bait Shop, yet gravity keeps me firmly attached to the ground.
"Crockett!" he calls out and from out of nowhere his Man Friday appears. "Pick up Miss Steele and take her into the Bait Shop," he orders him.
So much for helplessly.
"Boss," Crockett complains, "can't you have me lift something easier, like Mt. Rushmore?"
Christian ignores him and is already walking away.
With a huff and a puff and a grunt and a groan, Crockett lifts me off my feet and over his shoulder. Step by step and inch by inch, he carries me inside.
I look inside and am disappointed by what I see. Fish guts everywhere. And the smell. It stinks like high tide, if high tide was low tide. The strong stink of stench hits me like Mike Rice in a Las Vegas elevator.
Whatever you do, don't ride in an elevator with Mike Rice.
In a manly swipe of his arm, Christian knocks all the contents off the top of an office desk which conveniently, and for the purposes of this story, is located in a corner of the room. I see a name-plate fly into the distance with the name Dr. Deborah Nucatola on it, just underneath is her title Senior Director of Medical Services.
"You sure did see a lot in the dim light," Christian tells me.
"I just found it odd," I say.
"Well, it's not so odd. We Greys rarely fish, so we rent out this Bait Shop to Planned Parenthood. It's one of their medical clinics."
"I see," I say, not really seeing but sawing.
"Crockett, kindly place Miss Steele on top of the desk," Christian commands his bodyguard and personal hookah-handler, "and please close the door on your way out. Miss Steele will be handling my hookah tonight."
"Yes sir, boss," Crockett tells him, and does as he's told.
With the door shut, it's completely dark inside the Bait Shop. My Inner Goddess shivers. Or maybe it's my Subconscious. It's so dark I can't tell.
"Christian, where are you?" I bleat.
"I'm right here, Ana," he tells me. "And here. And here, and here."
The sound of his voice moves around me sexily like silk, if silk could move. Confusing me, confounding me, conflicting me, and many other words that begin with "con" and continue with "f".
"I can't see you."
"Good," he tells me, and I can hear the hunger in his voice.
With the pungent aroma of fish, I'm pretty hungry, too.
"I don't want you to see me," he goes on, not feeding me. "I'm going to make wild, passionate love to you in this pitch black, using only my superior sense of smell to find you."
I hear him shuffle in the darkness.
"Ow!" he says. "That's not you, is it?"
"No," I answer.
"Of course not," he says. "I knew that. I only wondered, in this darkness, if you knew that."
I hear him shuffle some more.
"Ow!" "Ow!" "Ow!"
"Ah... here you are."
I'm distracted by all the wet stickiness beneath me.
This must be the wet spot Kate is always complaining about.
"Ew... what's this?"
Um, maybe it's better I don't know.
"Oh, Ana! Oh, Ana! OH, ANA!"
"I'm over here."
"Too late. I'm done."
"Despite my sexual peccadilloes, Ana," Christian was telling me, "I'm really not that different than anyone else."
I'm laying here in Christian's arms, and I can't believe in how much he's confiding in me. I guess men like to talk after.
I'm still not sure.
"For example," he says, "I've never even had sex with two women at the same time. I've had sex with a woman who weighed more than two women, but that's about it. And I've never enjoyed a husband and wife getting into an argument in front of me. The least they could do is let me get dressed and leave first. And I like using I Can't Believe It's Not Butter with my morning toast. That way, when someone asks me how my breakfast was, I can honestly answer: 'It was unbelievable.' Have you ever had a lesbian experience, Ana?"
Where did that come from?
Maybe all this confiding stuff is overrated.
"Um... no," I tell him.
"Really?" he says, surprised. "You mean you've never tripped and fallen face-first into Kate's vagina?"
"Sure, but who hasn't?"
My inner goodness motions me to go on.
"Christian?" I say, meekly.
"Yes, my sweet?"
"Why does your family have a Bait Shack in El Paso of all places. We're in the middle of a desert, for crying out loud."
"Well," he says, "it's one of the idiosyncrasies of being rich. You're never truly considered rich until you own things that other rich men don't have. For example, back when I used to play golf, I hired a beautiful young college girl to wash my balls. You see, back then I enjoyed driving a Mercedes 450SL, and the other rich golfers would kid me about my not owning a Rolls Royce. I simply told them, 'I may not drive a Rolls, but then none of you have a beautiful young girl washing your balls, do you?' They could only cast their eyes downward, admitting defeat."
"You? Had a girl? Washing your balls?"
"Yes, and after every hole we'd go into the bushes where she'd enthusiastically polish my putter."
"I love laying here in your arms," I tell him, "but this is all so new to me."
"I understand, my dear. There's a first time for everything. I remember the first time I went to have my custom-made rubbers sized. It was embarrassing for me, but the gentleman in charge of taking my measurements tried to make me feel at ease. He handed me a board with holes in it. The holes were all different sizes. And then he pointed me to a private room. What he wanted me to do was go into the room, achieve and erection, and measure the circumference of my erect manhood using the holes in the board. He asked me if I needed help. I told him no, and he seemed disappointed."
Oh, my! This was new to me. The only thing I can think of that's similar is when Kate goes shopping for vegetables. She must be love her salads, because she's very picky about the length and girth of her cucumbers.
"So I took the board," he continues, "examined the different sizes of the holes in it, entered the room and did what comes naturally. I put it on, I took it off. I put it on, I took it off. It took me a while, but I eventually found the hole with the best fit."
"And then what happened?"
"When I was done I told the man, 'Forget the rubbers, how much do you want for the board?"
All of a sudden, the Bait Shack begins to shake around us.
What Can It Be?
No, it was just Christian's younger sister banging on the door.
I want to run and hide, but I'm so weak from our naughty shenanigans I couldn't punch my way out of a paper bag. Fortunately, I don't get stuck in a paper bag that often.
"Here," Christian says, tossing me a pair of edible panties.
"Those weren't edible," Christian tells me.
I spit the chewed-up underwear into my hand and look around. Hmm, I don't see a trash receptacle. With no place to throw it away I'll have to hold it in my hand and carry it around. Maybe he won't notice.
Christian lets his sister in.
"Ana!" she screams, and lumbers enthusiastically towards me. "Hug! Hug!"
I put up my hands to ward her off, and she sees what I have.
"Ooo... candy," she says, snatching the pre-chewed panties out of my hand and popping them into her mouth. "Yum."
I nudge Christian.
"What?" he says.
"Aren't you going to tell her?"
"Tell her what?"
We make our way back into the main house, and Kate runs up to say goodbye.
"We don't mean to rush off," she says, "but Crockett and I are on our way to have sex."
"Do you two ever do anything besides have sex?" I ask Kate, mortified.
"Sure, sometimes we go to the park and have sex, or we go to the movies and have sex, or we go to the zoo and have sex."
"You've had sex at the zoo?"
I've always wondered why those animals all have funny looks on their faces.
"Crockett's promised to make me some Cajun Chili tonight," she whispers confidentially.
"I don't know, but it involves a baby alligator, some Louisiana Hot Sauce, and someone's anus. Preferably mine."
We watch them as they leave.
"That Kate," I tell Christian, wistfully, "she's so beautiful."
"I don't know," Christian tells me, "take away her beauty, her body, and her fortune and what do you have?"
"And don't you forget it."
"We'll be going, too," Christian tells his parents.
"Aw, that's a shame," his father says, turning his attention to me. "We haven't even had a chance to brag about Christian yet."
"That's true, dear," Christian's mother tells her husband. Then she, too, turns her attention my way. "Did you know Christian was quite the athlete when he was younger, Ana? It's true. In fact, he was the first person to ever throw a no-hitter."
"Um, I don't mean to correct you, Mrs. Grey," I say, correcting her, "but other people have thrown no-hitters in baseball."
"Yes," she says, "but he did it in football."
I look at Christian, impressed. He gives me an aw-shucks grin that I find irresistible.
"Mother," he says, "please."
"There's nothing wrong with a mother bragging about her adopted son."
His mother comes up to me and gives me a hard hug goodbye.
"Come back any time, dear," she tells me.
The hug squeezed something loose inside of me. I excuse myself to go use the bathroom. I have to drop the kids off at the pool, if you get my drift.
As I sit there, I look around. I've never seen a bathroom so elaborately elaborate. The sink is made of gold. The toilet is made of gold. Even the medicine cabinet is made of SOLID GOLD!
Hmm, the medicine cabinet.
I wonder if rich people store the same things in there that a poor person does. Don't get me wrong, I'm not poor. I just don't have a nickel to my name. Perhaps it's just as well, I don't think I'd like to be called Ana Nickel.
I look at the medicine cabinet.
I shouldn't, but...
I open the cabinet door and gasp in shock. It's Christian's mother, Grace, looking at me looking at her. There's a hole on the other side, and she's got her face jammed in it. Apparently, she knew I would give in to the dark side and take a peek like a nosy nellie.
"Can I help you, dear?" she asks.
"Um... no," I mew.
"Please don't be snooping in our medicine cabinets," she tells me, and shuts the cabinet door using a little gold knob that was obviously attached to the inside for just such occasions.
"Okay," I say meekly, but she's already gone.
On our drive home, Christian tells me, "Well, it seems you're a hit with my parents."
"Why didn't you tell me you were adopted?"
"There's a lot you don't know about me, my darling. Before the Grey's adopted me, I was in a gang with One-eyed Willie, Dom Irrera, and the Petey brothers: Big Petey, Little Petey, Regular-Sized Petey, Ortho-Petey, and the one who always said everything twice, Re-Petey. My friends, S.E. and Hinton, came up with our name, The Outsiders. We were a gang, that is, until we accidentally came across an actual gang, the Tenth Avenue Freeze-Outs. That was when we quickly decided to become a fraternity." Christian smiled at the memory. "Silly as it sounds, we even gave each other nicknames: Soda Pop, Pony Boy, Tube Steak."
"What did they call you?"
"They called me Mister Tibbs."
"Tibbs was your last name?"
"No, it was just a movie I saw. It's been a long journey from the orphan I was to the man I eventually became. The man who started the Save The Gerbils Foundation."
"Do you remember your real parents?"
"Mr. and Mrs. Grey are my real parents."
"You know what I mean."
"The only thing I remember about my biological father is a bit of advice he once gave me. He told me not to masturbate because it makes people go blind."
"What did you tell him?"
"I told him, 'I'm over here, dad.'"
Christian's given me a lot to think about.
"Are you familiar with the old nursery rhyme
'Milk, milk, lemonade.
Around the corner, fudge is made'?"
He grows quiet, thoughtful. There is something on his mind, but I have no idea what. Maybe he's hungry for some fudge. I know I am. And then..."Do you ever see yourself indulging in anal sex?"
"But don't you plan on ever getting pregnant?"
Before I can answer, he says, "We're home."
When Christian says those words, I can hear a harp playing.
Christian stops his car, turns off the engine, and angrily gets out to throw the street musician located on the sidewalk into the actual street.
"Harpists," he tells me, and spits a huge goober onto the sidewalk in contempt. "They're worse than mimes."
Ever the gentleman, he opens the door on my side for me to get out. I hesitate. If there's one thing I learned from Rodney King, it's to never get out of the car.
"Stop eating that ham," he says.
"Sorry," I tell him, "I just happened to have one in my purse."
I reach up to grab the top of the door to daintily lug myself out, and notice him looking at my armpit.
"Don't stare," I tell him. "I'm self-conscious because I didn't have a chance to shave."
"I'm sorry," he says. "I was just wondering how you got your leg up that high."
As he leads me inside his--our--home, he tells me, "This will have to be an early night, my dear, because every morning I wake up at 5am to read the Wall street Journal."
"Why so early?" I ask him.
"Because my neighbor wakes up at 6. Would you care for something to drink?"
"Sure," I say.
He directs me to a soda machine, where a bottle of pop is $5."
"It's 5 dollars."
"Do you need change?"
He leads me into the bedroom.
"You know, Ana," he seductively whispers as he removes my clothes, "a man has only a single decade of normal sex before he becomes an animal, and an animal in the bedroom we all eventually do become."
Naked, I slip under the sheets.
He walks over to the other side of the bed and begins to take off his clothes.
"After that, he'll spend the next decade monkeying around," he continues, explaining himself. "The third decade is spent lion about it. And the fourth and last decade he makes an ass of himself."
He slips into bed with me and comes close, a predator moving in for the kill.
"Get ready, baby," he tells me, baring his teeth. "I'm going to Rock... Your... World!"
With that, Christian rolls on top of me, reaches over to turn off the light on the nightstand on my side of the bed, and then rolls back, winded.
"Whew!" he says, breathing heavily. "That was great."
"Yeah, baby. You're the best."
Having had his filthy way with me, Christian gets up and leaves to "make an important business call," he says, excusing himself.
Hmm... apparently, his "important business call" has to be made from the privacy of his bathroom, it seems.
With nothing to do, I look around. Nosy Nellie's at it again.
Hmm... what's this.
I pick up a little doohickey of some kind and hold it in my hand, lifting it to get a better look. It looks like the controls for one of those Magic Fingers bed massages, the kind you find in the finer, more upscale cheap motels.
What's a bed massage? my Inner Goodness asks, and I can't help but notice my Subconscious give her a dirty look.
A bed massage, at least the kind I'm talking about, is a vibrating mechanism in the bed of a motel room that activates once you put a quarter (or quarters) in the coin slot. I've never seen one myself, but that's what Kate tells me. Then again, Kate's the kind of girl who likes a car with a sunroof because it gives her more leg-room.
I wonder where...
I look for the little coin slot where I can insert my quarters to get this mechanism working. Let's see, is this it?
No, that's my vagina.
I'll remove those quarters later.
Oh, I get it! This is a control box for the bed!
I knew Christian was rich, but I never dreamt he had enough money to afford a folding bed.
What's a folding bed? my Inner Goodness wants to know.
My Subcompact slaps her on the back of the head for being so stupid.
Now, girls, I tell them. There's no such thing as a stupid question, unless you're asking if Donald Trump really does have a chance of becoming president.
A folding bed is one of those kind of beds, like the hospitals have, that fold in the middle like a taco.
Anyway, this remote I'm holding in my hand controls which end you wish to raise or lower. The top button controls the top and the bottom button controls the bottom.
I wonder what this button does?
Both ends of the bed slam together like they're giving each other a High Five. I'm forcibly folded between the mattress against my will, like the meat in an Ana Sandwich. I'm touching my toes in an unnatural way. I haven't been able to touch my toes since... since... Well, I've never been able to touch my toes, but that's beside the point.
Come on, girls! I tell my imaginary friends. Help me get out of here!
But they don't. Instead, my Inner Goodness is excitedly pointing at the remote, which has flown out of my hand and landed across the room. She's jumping up and down in a panic.
My Subcontinent slaps her upside the head to calm her down.
Thus angered, this causes my Inner Goodness to poke her viciously in the eyes.
My Subcomponent retaliates by grabbing my Inner Goodness' nose with a pair of pliers and stretching her nostrils outward like a lying Pinocchio.
My Inner Goodness takes the handsaw she just happens to have in her hand, and drags the sharp, jagged teeth along my Subcontract's head.
Why, I oughta... my Subcommunist says, rubbing her head in pain. Her head is so hard, all the teeth on the handsaw have broken or bent.
Seeing this, my Inner Goodness throws the now useless handsaw to the side. C'mere, you! she says, and grabs two handfuls of my Subcontrary's hair and rips them out in huge chunks.
My Subcortex looks at the tuffs of her recently pulled-out hair in my Inner Goodness' clenched fists and angrily yells, I'm gonna murdalize ya! She punches her in the stomach and, when my Inner Goodness' hands lower to protect her gut, my Subculture punches her in the nose. When my Inner Goodness' hands go to protect her nose, my Subcenter punches her in the gut again. And then her nose.
My Inner Goodness manages to get her hand on an exaggeratedly large and heavy-looking hammer, and gives my Subclimax a hard whack on the head, just above her forehead, causing her to see stars.
My Subclavical, I mean.
Seeing stars, that is.
Hey, girls! What about me?
They stop, but only because Christian has exited the bathroom with a folded up newspaper under his arm. He stops when he sees me trapped in his bed.
"Hi," I say, and give a little wave.
"You know, my mother was a crack whore," he tells me, and goes off to bed.