First published by TheWriter’s Coffee Shop, 2011Copyright E L James, 2011The right of E L James to beidentified as the author of thiswork has been asserted by herunder the CopyrightAmendment (Moral Rights)Act 2000This work is copyright. Apart
from any use as permittedunder the Copyright Act1968, no part may bereproduced, copied, scanned,stored in a retrieval system,recorded or transmitted, inany form or by any means,without the prior writtenpermission of the publisher.This book is a work offiction. Names, characters,places and incidents are either
a product of the author’simagination or are usedfictitiously. Any resemblanceto actual people living ordead, events or locales isentirely coincidental.The Writer’s Coffee Shop(Australia) PO Box 2013Hornsby Westfield NSW1635(USA) PO Box 2116Waxahachie TX 75168
Paperback ISBN-978-161213-058-3E-book ISBN-978-1-61213059-0A CIP catalogue record forthis book is available fromthe US Congress Library.Cover image by: E. SpekCover design by: JenniferMcGuire
E L James is a TV executive,wife, and mother of two,based in West London. Sinceearly childhood, she dreamtof writing stories that readerswould fall in love with, butput those dreams on hold to
focus on her family and hercareer. She finally plucked upthe courage to put pen topaper with her first novel,Fifty Shades of Grey.E L James is currentlyworking on the sequel to FiftyShades Darker and a newromantic thriller with asupernatural twist.
I owe a huge debt of gratitudeto Sarah, Kay, and Jada.Thank you for all that youhave done for me.
Also HUGE thanks toKathleen and Kristi whostepped into the breach andsorted stuff out.Thank you too to Niall, myhusband, my lover, and mybest friend (most of the time).And a big shout out to all the
wonderful, wonderful womenfrom all over the world whomI have had the pleasure ofmeeting since I started allthis, and whom I nowconsider friends, including:Ale, Alex, Amy, Andrea,Angela, Azucena, Babs, Bee,Belinda, Betsy, Brandy, Britt,Caroline, Catherine, Dawn,Gwen, Hannah, Janet, Jen,Jenn, Jill, Kathy, Katie,Kellie, Kelly, Liz, Mandy,
Margaret, Natalia, Nicole,Nora, Olga, Pam, Pauline,Raina, Raizie, Rajka, Rhian,Ruth, Steph, Susi, Tasha,Taylor and Una. And also tothe many, many talented,funny, warm women (andmen) I have met online. Youknow who you are.Thanks to Morgan and Jenn
for all things Heathman.And finally, thank you toJanine, my editor. You rock.That is all.
He’s come back. Mommy’sasleep or she’s sick again.
I hide and curl up smallunder the table in the kitchen.Through my fingers I can seeMommy. She is asleep on thecouch. Her hand is on thesticky green rug, and he’swearing his big boots with theshiny buckle and standingover Mommy shouting.He hits Mommy with abelt. Get up! Get up! You areone fucked-up bitch. You areone fucked-up bitch. You are
one fucked-up bitch. You areone fucked-up bitch. You areone fucked-up bitch. You areone fucked-up bitch.Mommy makes a sobbingnoise. Stop. Please stop.Mommy doesn’t scream.Mommy curls up small.I have my fingers in myears, and I close my eyes. Thesound stops.He turns and I can see hisboots as he stomps into the
kitchen. He still has the belt.He is trying to find me.He stoops down andgrins. He smells nasty. Ofcigarettes and drink. Thereyou are, you little shit.A chilling wail wakes him.Christ! He’s drenched insweat and his heart ispounding.What the fuck? He
sits bolt upright in bed andputs his head in hands.Fuck.They’re back. The noise wasme.He takes a deep steadyingbreath, trying to rid his mindand nostrils of the smell ofcheap bourbon and staleCamel cigarettes.
I have survived Day ThreePost-Christian, and my first
day at work. It has been awelcome distraction. Thetime has flown by in a haze ofnew faces, work to do, andMr. Jack Hyde. Mr. JackHyde. he smiles down at me,his blue eyes twinkling, as heleans against my desk.“Excellent work, Ana. Ithink we’re going to make agreat team.”Somehow, I manage tocurl my lips upward in a
semblance of a smile.“I’ll be off, if that’s okaywith you,” I murmur.“Of course, it’s fivethirty. I’ll see you tomorrow.”“Goodnight, Jack.”“Goodnight, Ana.”Collecting my bag, Ishrug on my jacket and headfor the door. Out in the earlyevening air of Seattle, I take adeep breath. It doesn’t beginto fill the void in my chest, a
void that’s been present sinceSaturday morning, a painfulhollow reminder of my loss. Iwalk toward the bus stop withmy head down, staring at myfeet and contemplating beingwithout my beloved Wanda,my old Beetle. or the Audi.I shut the door on thatthought immediately. No.Don’t think about him. Ofcourse, I can afford a car—anice, new car. I suspect he
has been overgenerous in hispayment, and the thoughtleaves a bitter taste in mymouth, but I dismiss it and tryto keep my mind as numb andas blank as possible. I can’tthink about him. I don’t wantto start crying again—not outon the street.The apartment is empty. Imiss Kate, and I imagine herlying on a beach in Barbadossipping a cool cocktail. I turn
on the flat-screen televisionso there’s noise to fill thevacuum and provide somesemblance of company, but Idon’t listen or watch. I sit andstare blankly at the brickwall. I am numb. I feelnothing but the pain. Howlong must I endure this?The door buzzer startlesme from my anguish, and myheart skips a beat. Who couldthat be? I press the intercom.
“DeliveryforMs.Steele.”Abored,disembodied voice answers,and disappointment crashesthrough me. I listlessly makemy way downstairs and find ayoung man noisily chewinggum,holdingalargecardboard box, and leaningagainst the front door. I signfor the package and take itupstairs. The box is huge andsurprisingly light. Inside are
two dozen long-stemmed,white roses and a card.Congratulations on your firstday at work.I hope it went well.And thank you for the glider.That was very thoughtful.It has pride of place on mydesk.Christian
I stare at the typed card,the hollow in my chestexpanding. No doubt, hisassistant sent this. Christianprobably had very little to dowith it. It’s too painful tothink about. I examine theroses—they are beautiful, andI can’t bring myself to throwthem in the trash. Dutifully, Imake my way into the kitchento hunt down a vase.
And so a pattern develops:wake, work, cry, sleep. Well,try to sleep. I can’t evenescape him in my dreams.Gray burning eyes, his lostlook, his hair burnished andbright all haunt me. And themusic. so much music—Icannot bear to hear anymusic. I am careful to avoid itat all costs. Even the jinglesin commercials make meshudder.
I have spoken to no one,not even my mother or Ray. Idon’t have the capacity foridle talk now. No, I wantnone of it. I have become myown island state. A ravaged,war-torn land where nothinggrows and the horizons arebleak. Yes, that’s me. I caninteract impersonally at work,but that’s it. If I talk to Mom,I know I will break evenfurther—and I have nothing
left to break.I am finding it difficult to eat.By Wednesday lunchtime, Imanage a cup of yogurt, andit’s the first thing I’ve eatensince Friday. I am survivingon a newfound tolerance forlattes and Diet Coke. It’s thecaffeine that keeps me going,but it’s making me anxious.
Jack has started to hoverover me, irritating me, askingme personal questions. Whatdoes he want? I’m polite, butI need to keep him at arm’slength.I sit and begin trawlingthroughapileofcorrespondence addressed tohim, and I’m pleased with thedistraction of menial work.My e-mail pings, and Iquickly check to see who it’s
from.Holy shit. An e-mail fromChristian. Oh no, not here.not at work.From: Christian GreySubject: TomorrowDate: June 8, 2011 14:05To: Anastasia SteeleDear AnastasiaForgive this intrusion at work. I
hope that it’s going well. Didyou get my flowers?I note that tomorrow is thegallery opening for your friend’sshow, and I’m sure you’ve nothad time to purchase a car, andit’s a long drive. I would bemore than happy to take you—should you wish.Let me know.Christian GreyCEO, Grey EnterprisesHoldings Inc.
Tears swim in my eyes. Ihastily leave my desk andbolt to the restroom to escapeinto one of the stalls. José’sshow. Crap. I’d forgotten allabout it, and I promised himI’d go. Shit, Christian is right;how am I going to get there?I clutch my forehead.Why hasn’t José phoned?Come to think of it—whyhasn’t anyone phoned? I’vebeen so absentminded, I
haven’t noticed that my cellphone has been silent.Shit! I am such an idiot! Istill have it on divert to theBlackberry.Holyhell.Christian’s been getting mycalls—unless he’s just thrownthe Blackberry away. Howdid he get my e-mail address?He knows my shoe size,an e-mail address is hardlygoing to present him withmany problems.
Can I see him again?Could I bear it? Do I want tosee him? I close my eyes andtilt my head back as grief andlonging lance through me. Ofcourse I do.Perhaps, perhaps I cantell him I’ve changed mymind. No, no, no. I cannotbe with someone who takespleasure in inflicting pain onme, someone who can’t loveme.
Torturous memories ng, the bathtub, hisgentleness, his humor, and hisdark, brooding, sexy stare. Imiss him. It’s been five days,five days of agony that hasfelt like an eternity.I wrap my arms aroundmy body, hugging myselftightly,holdingmyselftogether. I miss him. I really
miss him. I love him.Simple.I cry myself to sleep atnight, wishing I hadn’twalked out, wishing that hecould be different, wishingthat we were together. Howlong will this hideousoverwhelming feeling last? Iam in purgatory.Anastasia Steele, you areat work! I must be strong, butI want to go to José’s show,
and deep down, the masochistin me wants to see Christian.Taking a deep breath, I headback to my desk.From: Anastasia SteeleSubject: TomorrowDate: June 8, 2011 14:25To: Christian GreyHi ChristianThank you for the flowers; they
are lovely.Yes, I would appreciate a lift.Thank you.Anastasia SteeleAssistant to Jack Hyde,Commissioning Editor, SIPChecking my phone, I findthat it is still switched todivert. Jack is in a meeting,so I quickly call José.
“Hi, José. It’s Ana.”“Hello, stranger.” Histone is so warm andwelcoming it’s almost enoughto push me over the edgeagain.“I can’t talk long. Whattime should I be theretomorrow for your show?”“You’re still coming?”He sounds excited.“Yes, of course.” I smilemy first genuine smile in five
days as I picture his broadgrin.“Seven thirty.”“See you then. Good-bye,José.”“Bye, Ana.”From: Christian GreySubject: TomorrowDate: June 8, 2011 14:27To: Anastasia Steele
Dear AnastasiaWhat time shall I collect you?Christian GreyCEO, Grey EnterprisesHoldings Inc.From: Anastasia SteeleSubject: TomorrowDate: June 8, 2011 14:32To: Christian GreyJosé’s show starts at 7:30.
What time would you suggest?Anastasia SteeleAssistant to Jack Hyde,Commissioning Editor, SIPFrom: Christian GreySubject: TomorrowDate: June 8, 2011 14:34To: Anastasia SteeleDear AnastasiaPortland is some distance
away. I shall collect you at 5:45.I look forward to seeing you.Christian GreyCEO, Grey EnterprisesHoldings Inc.From: Anastasia SteeleSubject: TomorrowDate: June 8, 2011 14:38To: Christian GreySee you then.
Anastasia SteeleAssistant to Jack Hyde,Commissioning Editor, SIPOh my. I’m going to seeChristian, and for the firsttime in five days, my spiritslift a fraction and I allowmyself to wonder how he’sbeen.Has he missed me?Probably not like I’ve missed
him. Has he found a newsubmissive from whereverthey come from? The thoughtis so painful that I dismiss itimmediately. I look at the pileof correspondence I need tosort for Jack and tackle it as Itry to push Christian out ofmy mind once more.That night in bed, I tossand turn, trying to sleep. It isthe first time in a while Ihaven’t cried myself to sleep.
In my mind’s eye, Ivisualize Christian’s face thelast time I saw him as I lefthis apartment. His torturedexpression haunts me. Iremember he didn’t want meto go, which was odd. Whywould I stay when things hadreached such an impasse? Wewere each skirting around ourown issues—my fear ofpunishment, his fear of.what? Love?
Turning on my side, I hugmy pillow, filled with anoverwhelming sadness. Hethinks he doesn’t deserve tobe loved. Why does he feelthat way? Is it something todo with his upbringing? Hisbirth mom, the crack whore?My thoughts plague me intotheearlyhoursuntileventually I fall into a fitful,exhausted sleep.
The day drags and drags andJack is unusually attentive. Isuspect it’s Kate’s plum dressand the black high-heeledboots I’ve stolen from hercloset, but I don’t dwell onthe thought. I resolve to goclothes shopping with myfirst paycheck. The dress islooser on me than it was, butI pretend not to notice.Finally, it’s five thirty,and I collect my jacket and
purse, trying to quell mynerves. I’m going to see him!“Do you have a datetonight?” Jack asks as hestrolls past my desk on hisway out.“Yes. No. Not really.”He cocks an eyebrow atme, his interest clearlypiqued. “Boyfriend?”I flush. “No, a friend. Anex-boyfriend.”“Maybe tomorrow you’d
like to come for a drink afterwork. You’ve had a stellarfirst week, Ana. We shouldcelebrate.” He smiles andsome unknown emotion flitsacross his face, making meuneasy.Putting his hands in hispockets, he saunters throughthe double doors. I frown athis retreating back. Drinkswith the boss, is that a goodidea?
I shake my head. I havean evening of Christian Greyto get through first. How am Igoing to do this? I hurry intothe restroom to make lastminute adjustments.In the large mirror on thewall, I take a long, hard lookat my face. I am my usualpale self, dark circles roundmy too-large eyes. I lookgaunt, haunted.Jeez, I wish I knew how
to use makeup. I apply somemascara and eyeliner andpinch my cheeks, hoping tobring some color their way.Tidying my hai