Summary: AU - Cristina Yang is a young, talented and ambitious photographer who seems to have everything going for her. But there’s something missing, that special someone to share it with. At her first photography exhibition a handsome artist captures her attention, but is he the one she’s been looking for…?
Disclaimer: All television shows, movies, books, and other copyrighted material referred to in this work, and the characters, settings, and events thereof, are the properties of their respective owners. As this work is an interpretation of the original material and not for-profit, it constitutes fair use. Reference to real persons, places, or events are made in a fictional context, and are not intended to be libelous, defamatory, or in any way factual.
Author's note: I'm really really sorry for letting you all wait for so long. My beta was busy with real life stuff so she didn't have time to correct my chapters, but my wonderful friend helped me out so you can finally find out what happens next.
"What are you doing here Montgomery? Did you push the wrong button in the elevator? Because if I remember correctly, your magazine is a few floors below," Cristina said bitterly, when she saw Addison Montgomery walking down the hall. She'd been a chief of F&M magazine and the biggest enemy of Seattle's Metropolitan for as long as Cristina could remember.
"Hello to you too Cristina. Why so bitter?" She asked with a fake sweetness in her voice and flipped her red hair over her shoulder.
"Answer the question!" Cristina snapped, crossing her arms over her chest.
"I didn't come to see you so I think it's none of your business." The sweet tone of Addison's voice suddenly disappeared,
Cristina knew that Addison wanted to get rid of her as quickly as possible, but she wouldn't give up so easily. She wanted to know why was one of their biggest enemies wandering around the hall of their magazine. "You've been trying to ruin our magazine for three years. So it is my business. Why are you here?"
"No need to get so upset. I'm here for a friendly visit."
"A friendly visit?" Cristina chuckled. She had no idea who would be interested in talking to Addison. Especially in a friendly kind of way.
"Don't look at me like that. It was not my idea. Owen called me here." She said, finally explaining the reason of her visit.
"What does he want?" Cristina kept asking questions, even though she knew Addison wouldn't answer them honestly.
"I'd like to know that too. So if you excuse me, I'm going to go and find him." She shot Cristina one last fake smile before walking away, leaving the tapping sound of her heels echoing behind her.
"What do you think they're doing there for so long?" Meredith asked, sipping from her coffee, while she, Cristina, Lexie and Izzie sat in the kitchen and stared at the door of Owen's office. It'd been more than half an hour since Addison entered and they still had no idea what was going on inside.
"I don't know. Plotting how to murder us all so they can run the magazine together?" Cristina suggested, shrugging her shoulders and pretended it didn't bother her.
"Having hot office sex," Izzie said with a smirk on her lips.
"Montgomery and Hunt? Eww." The rest of them scrunched their faces in disgust.
"So what? Even they're just people."
"What are you staring at?" Alex asked as he entered the kitchen and saw his female colleagues intensely looking out through the glass wall, as if waiting for something.
"Not what, but who," Cristina answered, her eyes still glued to the door of Owen's office.
"Montgomery," Meredith explained.
"She's hot. Can I join?" Alex grinned, taking some grape from the table and popping it to his mouth, before sitting on one of the chairs next to his colleagues.
"Alex!" Izzie exclaimed, punching him to the shoulder, clearly pissed at her boyfriend that he was talking about Addison like that. Especially since she was their enemy.
Alex didn't say anything, just pressed a little kiss to Izzie's cheek, hoping it would make her anger go away. And it did. "So will anybody tell me why are we're spying on her?"
"She's been at Owen's office for more than half an hour now and we're trying to figure out what she's doing there," Lexie said, already bored from the never ending waiting.
"I'd say they're having sex," Alex chuckled, throwing another grape to his mouth.
"That's what I said!" Izzie exclaimed happily, because finally someone shared her idea. No matter how weird or disgusting it seemed to others, she could totally imagine Owen and Addison getting together.
"We already think the same." Alex smiled and pulled Izzie in for a kiss.
"Hey! Look! She's coming out," Cristina shouted to stop Alex and Izzie from kissing and pull their focus back on what they were waiting for.
As Addison walked out of Owen's office she had a conniving smile on her face and knowing that the other people from the magazine were probably watching her, she turned around to them, giving them a slight wave with her hand before walking away. And all they could do was keep speculating about what had just happened.
"I can't paint you if you keep moving." Jackson sighed after a while of futile trying to paint Cristina who couldn't sit still for more than a few minutes.
"But this chair is so uncomfortable," Cristina complained as she tried to find the most comfortable position to sit in. When Jackson told her he would like to paint her, she couldn't be more excited about it. But as she soon found out, being painted wasn't so easy. She had to sit without moving for hours and it wasn't fun at all. "Do all the models you paint sit on this horrible chair?"
"Only guys. Women are lying nakedon a bed of rose petals," Jackson answered with a grin, which earned him an angry glare from Cristina. "Just kidding. Rose petals are too cheesy. I prefer tulips," he kept mocking her.
"Do you want me to go away?" Cristina asked angrily, crossing her arms over her chest. She really wasn't in the mood for jokes.
"Relax, Cristina. I was just messing with you. You're too tensed up today. Did something happen?" Jackson asked with concern, not understanding what happened to Cristina. Usually they kept making fun of each other and then laughed about it, but today apparently wasn't day for jokes.
"Addison happened," she answered with a frown.
"Who?" Jackson furrowed his eyebrows, trying to remember if Cristina ever mentioned this name before.
"Addison Montgomery. She's the owner of a rival magazine and she's been trying to ruin us for as long as I can remember," she tried to explain, throwing her hands in the air. "I ran into her at work today. She had some sort of super secret meeting with Owen or something like that."
"And you're afraid they're plotting something," Jackson said, finally understanding what made Cristina so furious.
Jackson sighed, knowing that while Cristina was upset she wouldn't be able to sit still and he couldn't paint her. So he put down his brush and walked over to her, standing behind her. "I know it sucks, but you can't do anything about it. Especially when you don't know what is really happening," he said in a calm voice and slowly started to rub her stiff shoulders. "Maybe their meeting had nothing to do with work. Maybe there is nothing to be worried about."
"But they're…" Cristina tried to protest, but lost the track of her words when she felt Jackson's lips on her neck, kissing their way up to her jaw.
"Just relax and forget about work," he whispered against her skin, making her shiver when he placed his lips behind her ear.
"Okay." Cristina let out a small sigh between kisses, completely forgetting about Addison and Owen. At least for now.
"Hey, guys," Jackson said with a big smile on his lips when he walked to the kitchen at Cristina's work. As usuall they were supposed to get lunch together and today Jackson brought his favorite food – fried chicken and rice. However the smile from his face quickly disappeared when he noticed how sad and dull everyone looked. "Did something happen?" he asked with a worry in his voice.
"Addison," Lexie said and scrunched her face.
"And Owen," Meredith added.
"I don't understand." Jackson shook his head and looked at Cristina, hoping she would explain what was going on. Because so far he didn't understand anything.
"Owen wants to sell his part of the company," Cristina explained shortly. "To Addison."
"Oh," Jackson let out a small sigh when he finally understood what made everyone so pissed. Even though he didn't know Addison, from what Cristina told him about her, he knew that the possibility of her buying Owen's part of the magazine wasn't a good thing at all.
"She will ruin us," Cristina said with her head in her hands, still trying to figure out what made Owen leave all of sudden. A small voice inside her head was telling her, that she was at least partially responsible for it.
"She can't ruin us. She would have what? Twenty percent? She can't do much with it." Izzie tried to stay positive, but she knew it wouldn't be easy. There was a reason why the called Addison satan. And it certainly wasn't because of her red hair.
"It's Addison. If she has any say in this magazine, we're screwed." Cristina pressed her lips together, still thinking whether her fight with Owen from the few days ago triggered all of this.
"If only someone else could buy it," Lexie murmured with her head still lying on the table. She was usually able to find solution for any problem, but this probably wasn't something she could solve with her photographic memory and knowledge from books.
"But who?" Meredith asked. "I don't know anyone who has million dollars to buy Owen's part."
"Maybe I could buy it," Jackson said all of sudden and all the eyes in the room were immediately on him.
"What?" Cristina as the first one to speak, raising her eyebrows in surprise. "But… where would you get that kind of money?"
"Well…" he started hesitantly, rubbing the back of his neck. He knew that this thing would eventually come out and now was apparently the time. "There is something I haven't told you about."
"Please tell me you're not a thief or that you don't have a really rich wife you forgot to tell me about. I had enough of bad surprises for one day."
"Of course not! Nothing like that." He laughed a little and slid to the chair opposite Cristina. "You know when I told my parents are successful lawyers?" Jackson asked and Cristina nodded. "Well they're more than that. They actually own a big law firm in New York."
"Oh," was all that left Cristina's lips as she waited for Jackson to get to the point.
"And as their only child I have something like a trust fund."
"A trust fund," Cristina repeated, taking a deep breath. In her head the word trust fund always associated with those really rich kids you could see in reality shows. The ones that made a big party for their sixteenth birthday, where they invited the whole town and the most popular and expensive singers.
"I think we should go," Meredith said, getting up from her chair when she noticed that the conversation between Cristina and Jackson was getting more private and Lexie did the same.
"But I…" Izzie tried to protest, wanting to know what was going to happen next, but Meredith was already gripping her arm and pulling her out of the kitchen.
"So… How much?" Cristina asked hesitantly. She knew that no matter how much money Jackson had, it wouldn't change their relationship, but suddenly finding out that her boyfriend was a millionaire was a shock for her.
"Fifteen," he whispered with his eyes glued to the table, as if it was a bad thing. Jackson didn't like talking about money. It made him feel that if people knew that he was rich, they would look at him differently. And the look in Cristina's eyes when he told her about the trust fund and it wasn't saying anything good.
"And you want to buy part of this magazine because…"
"Because it's a good thing to do and it could actually help you all and…" he started to name all the possible reasons that came to his mind, but Cristina stopped him. She knew why he really wanted to do it, but she needed to hear it from him.
"And the real reason?"
"Because I love you and I want you to be happy." He finally looked up and then took her hands into his.
"Jackson… I love you too. You know that. But this… You can't spend million dollars just to make me happy. That's… That's ridiculous." She shook her head, still not believing what was happening in front of her eyes. She couldn't let Jackson spend so much money because he loved her, could she?
"But why? Lexie said you needed someone to buy it. And I thought…" His words got lost in his throat. He didn't really know what he thought. He just wanted to solve the problem that was bothering them all. Maybe he really should've thought that through before letting the words slip out.
"I know. You're trying to help and you want me to be happy, but why don't you think about yourself for a moment? What if it doesn't work out? What if you lose your money or what if we break up? You will regret it." For an unknown reason there was panic building inside Cristina all she could think about were reasons why Jackson shouldn't do it.
Jackson knew that Cristina could be right. That maybe he would regret this decision later. But right now he didn't care. He was decided to risk it. "We are not gonna break up. And I'm not gonna lose my money. You just need to trust me." He gave her hands a tight reassuring squeeze, but she still didn't look convinced.
Cristina let out a loud sigh, knowing that if Jackson was at least half as stubborn as she was he wouldn't change his mind. "If this doesn't work out…"
"It will," Jackson stopped her sooner than she was able to voice some more doubts about his idea. "It will work," he repeated one more time and leaned over the table to kiss her, hoping he was right.
The same day they decided to spend evening in Cristina's apartment. They were sitting on the couch together, watching TV, but neither of them were able to focus. While Jackson was thinking about everything he needed to do to be able buy Owen's part of the company and become an official co-owner of the magazine, Cristina kept wondering how this would change her relationship with Jackson. Even though he tried to reassure her that everything would stay the same, Cristina wasn't so sure. But she tried to not worry her boyfriend with unnecessary things, but the more she was thinking about it, the more she felt like they had to talk.
"So umm, about the trust fund thing," she started a little hesitantly, not knowing where to begin. There were too many things running through her mind and she still wasn't sure whether she wanted to bring the topic of Jackson being rich up or whether she wanted to pretend she didn't know.
Jackson knew that Cristina wouldn't remain quiet about this topic for much longer and was ready to answer any kind of question she had for him. He really didn't want the events of the day to affect their relationship and he would do anything to prove Cristina that nothing had to change. "Ask me anything."
"Why didn't you tell me sooner?" she asked, turning around so she was looking into his eyes, impatiently waiting for an answer.
"I don't know. I guess there just wasn't the right time." Jackson shrugged, not knowing how to answer. "Besides it's not a big deal."
"Yes, it is!" Cristina exclaimed a little louder than she wanted. "My parents had to save every cent to be able to put me through college. I had to work my ass off to be able to pay bills at first. And I thought you were the same. But now… I feel like I'm something less. I fell like… like a gold digger," she added the last few words in a whisper, lowering her head in embarrassment. She knew she couldn't blame Jackson for coming from a rich family, but she also couldn't fight the feeling of being something less.
"Oh, Cristina, don't say that. The fact that I happen to have a rich family doesn't make you anything less than me," he said, his fingers softly stroking Cristina's cheek. Jackson expected her to say a lot of things, but this definitely wasn't one of them. And even though it wasn't his fault, he felt guilty for making Cristina feel like this. "You're much more than me," he added in a whisper, resting his forehead against her while one of his hands was still placed on the side of Cristina's face and the other one was wrapped around her tiny waist.
They remained quiet for a while, just looking into each other's eyes as if trying to reassure themselves that everything was going to be okay.
"What you said about illustrating books to get this apartment. Was that a lie?" Cristina broke the silence with another question that had been bugging her the whole evening.
"Everything I told is truth. I wanted to prove myself I can make it without those money. I still want to prove it. So no, I've never used the money."
Cristina had to admit she was a little surprised. She already knew that Jackson wasn't the type of person who spent all his money on fancy and unnecessary things, but she kind of expected him to use them as a start to his career of a painter. "So you were never even planning to use them on anything?"
"I'm saving them for future. If something happens. If I ever have a family…" Jackson tried to explain as he felt Cristina stiffen in his arms when he started to speak about family. Even though they weren't so far in their relationship and they never talked about the possibility of getting married or having kids, Jackson slowly started to realize, that one day he'd love to start a family with Cristina. "Or we will just use them to pay for the best nursing home we will grow old in," he added with a small smirk on his lips, trying to lighten the situation.
"We?" Cristina cocked her eyebrows, surprised that Jackson was already thinking about them growing old together. She has never been thinking too far ahead, but she had to admit she could imagine spending the rest of her life with Jackson. No matter how crazy it could sound after a few weeks of dating.
"There is no way you'd get rid of me," Jackson said with a grin and pressed a soft kiss to Cristina's lips, making her giggle a little.
Maybe the money really wouldn't change anything. Cristina thought and snuggled closer to her boyfriend.
- Captured - Chapter 10