Chapter 1


White Skechers clomped against the hard arena floor as her amber eyes searched for the door, having already gotten past security.  The woman was around five foot eight and had a curvy figure with her pale blue tank top and denim jean skirt that was ripped at the seams for style.  Her long blood red hair was pulled up in a neat bun, a few tendrils framing her pale face, blue eyeliner bringing out her eyes even more and clear gloss on her lips.  She finally spotted it and took a deep breath, a blue jean jacket hanging over her arm, her pass hanging around her neck.  Bringing her hand up, she knocked three times and stepped back when the door opened, tears instantly filling her eyes at the sight of him.


“Daddy?” She whispered, having not seen him in four long years, and couldn't stop the tears from flowing down her cheeks.


Paul stared at his daughter, taller than her by a mere two inches, his wide eyes looking her over. “Gracie?” He whispered back, quickly stepping out into the hallway, pulling the door shut behind him.  After staring at her for another moment, he pulled her into his arms for a tight hug, trying not to cry himself.


She laughed tearfully, holding onto him for dear life, and slowly pulled back to stare into his soft brown eyes. “Surprise!” Grace smiled brightly at her father, slowly turning around as he admired her.  The last time he had saw her she was just getting ready to start medical school.  Being 28 and a fresh graduate, Grace figured coming on the road to visit her father -who was a manager for the wrestler The Undertaker, whom she never met before- wouldn't be a bad idea. “It's been so long.”


Now that Paul was over his initial shock, he cleared his throat hastily, eyes scanning the hallway before taking her hand and guiding her into an empty dressing room, closing the door behind him. “Grace, not that I'm not thrilled to see you honey, but what are you doing here?” He asked confusion in his eyes. “I thought you were still in school?”


“I graduated about a month ago and decided to come see you.” She frowned, her amber eyes filling with hurt, knowing he wasn't happy that she was here. “I should've called, I'm sorry father.” She softly apologized, feeling him lift her chin, staring back into his eyes with such sadness in her own. “I-I'll go home if you want me too.” Grace whispered, not wanting to anger him, and blinked her tears away so he wouldn't feel guilty about it.


“No, no!  Of course I don't want you to go home, Grace!  Don't be silly.” Paul said quickly.  He was genuinely pleased to see her, just shocked.  Some warning would have been nice. “I'm just surprised to see you is all, honey.  This is a nice surprise.” He smiled at her, pulling her in for another hug, trying to reassure her he wasn't upset.


Grace sighed with relief and hugged him tightly, knowing her father didn't like surprises, but she couldn't help herself. “It's so great seeing you, father.” She softly whispered; slowly pulling back again, silver bracelets on her wrists. 


Her smile lit up a room and she looked up when a knock sounded at the door followed by its opening, revealing a large man with black symbols painted on his chest and he had long black hair with black armbands around his biceps.  Another man stood next to him who was African American and had the same designs, both staring at Paul with unreadable eyes.


“‘Taker is askin' for you.” Bradshaw stated, glancing over at the woman before looking at Paul again. “He asked you to bring your visitor.” They both walked away.


“Who is ‘Taker, father?”


Leave it to ‘Taker to already know she was in the building, how inconvenient.  He looked Grace over really quick before nodding, as if to reassure himself. “He's...a co-worker.” He said, not entirely sure how to explain their relationship. “I manage him.  Come on, Gracie.” He took her arm and guided her out of the room.


Not realizing what was happening, Grace walked out with her father, his hand taking hers, looking around and down the hallway before her father walked up to the same dressing room she'd knocked on only moments ago, reuniting with him.  She smiled at him softly, wondering why he looked so nervous, and slowly guided her inside the dark room.  A shiver went down her spine as the door closed behind them, feeling her father squeeze her hand a little more, and just looked around curiously, trying to adjust her eyes to the dimly lit room.


“Why Paul,” A dark voice boomed from the center of the room, sounding amused. “I don't remember asking for a whore tonight.”


Around him the Ministry tittered, all eyes on Paul and the woman.


“This isn't a whore!” Paul sputtered, shaking his head frantically.




Grace's eyes widened in both shock and revulsion, not believing what this man just said.  She wasn't aware her outfit looked like a whore.  It was a simple tank top with a denim skirt and Skechers.


“Then who is the delightful morsel?” Mideon inquired, licking his lips while standing next to his master like a good puppet.


“My name is Grace.  I'm his daughter.” She answered softly, biting her bottom lip when her father shot a look, and suddenly felt very uncomfortable.  Who were all of these men and why was her father with them?


“Paul...really, a daughter...and why haven't we seen her delicious presence before?” It was a sultry purr.


Paul almost said 'because she has her priorities right', but swallowed hard. “Because she's a college girl, med school grad.” He couldn't keep the pride out of his voice.


“Anatomy.” Bradshaw murmured with a wicked grin, eliciting a round of chuckles from the Ministry.


Grace swallowed hard and this time squeezed her father's hand, letting him know she was more than nervous, keeping her head lowered, eyes on the floor, her Skechers suddenly becoming more interesting than anything else.


“Maybe she can show us her own and give us some tips?” Farooq suggested with a chuckle, rubbing his hands together.


Edge raised an eyebrow, wondering what had possessed Paul to bring his daughter on the road, knowing the type of men the Ministry involved.  ‘Dumbass.’ He thought, shaking his head, looking over at his brother.


“Now, now gentleman, I'm sure we'll all have time to get to know the little...intern.” 'Taker drawled wickedly, standing up from his chair, smiling calmly as the men lapsed into silence, an occasional snort escaping them every now and again. “Introduce us, Paul.” He ordered softly, moving towards them with grace that eluded most men.


Paul really did not want to do that.


Grace could feel her father's reluctance and honestly didn't blame him.  These men were frightening her to no avail, but she also refused to leave her father's side.  She came here for him after all and refused to leave so suddenly, even though she was scared out of her mind.  She didn't raise her head, noticing a pair of black, large boots come into her presence, and backed away when he reached his hand out to touch her out of instinct.  That was probably a mistake, but she didn't care.  She didn't want any of them touching her in ANY way.


“‘Taker-” Paul winced as ‘Taker's massive hand shot out and firmly gripped Grace's chin, forcing her to look at him.  He knew first hand those fingers had a steel grip.  “Her name is Grace.  Grace, this is ‘Taker.  Now-” He shut up when ‘Taker arched an eyebrow at him, blushing a deep red.  This was his daughter and he was being made to look like a coward before her. “Unhand her.” He said firmly, insides quivering.


Looking amused, he did.


Grace was trembling from head to toe, not able to stop the fear from consuming her, covering her mouth with her hand.  His touch sent a shiver of dread down her spine and Grace suddenly wanted to leave. “Father, is there a cafeteria somewhere?” She asked softly, watching as he turned to face her, the fear undoubtedly boiling in her amber eyes. “I'm...hungry from the plane ride.  Where is it?” She smiled shakily back at him, biting her bottom lip when he quietly told her and nodded, kissing his forehead gently. “It was nice meeting all of you.” She added as an afterthought before turning and heading for the door.


“Now Paul, keeping something as beautiful as that all to yourself...” ‘Taker's voice followed her out of the room, a few indefinable emotions in his tone, none of them boding well for anybody.


“She is my DAUGHTER.”


Grace practically fled down the hallway as fast as her Skechers would allow her to go, trying to blink the tears out of her eyes.  She rounded the corner and ended up running into a brick wall, grunting as she fell back on her ass, her hands catching her fall.  Her heart was pounding a furious tattoo in her chest and she was trembling slightly, tears glittering in her eyes. “Sorry.” She whispered when she realized someone was towering over her, feeling strong hands reach out to pull her up by her upper arms, standing up on her feet again.


“Not a problem.” Came a husky, Texan drawl, the hands lingering for a moment before pulling away, disappearing into a pair of jean shorts. “You really ought to watch where you're going, honey.  Too many people back here won't think twice about mowin' you down.” Steve Austin stared down at the redhead, bending down so he could look into her face, his blue eyes concerned when he seen the tears. “You alright?”


His warm blue eyes stared back at her as Grace nodded, the tears subsiding, a small smile on her face.  He was gorgeous, sweet and had a drawl that sent her heart racing even more, for an entirely different reason. “Thank you for helping me up.” She softly said, dusting her skirt off along with her tank top. “Do you know where the cafeteria is?” She suddenly asked, really not wanting to go back to that dressing room where her father was, shivering involuntarily at the thought.  Goosebumps formed on her arms as she rubbed them up and down, trying to get the chill out of her system, wanting warmth.


“Yeah, down the hall a ways.” Steve replied, watching her with raised eyebrows.  She was a weird one, no doubt about that. “I don't recognize you, new?” He asked the obvious, gesturing for her to walk with him, heading towards the cafeteria.  “And here I thought I knew just about everybody here.  Shows you ya learn somethin' every day.”


“I'm not part of the company.  I'm here visiting my father.” She replied gently, smiling as they walked side by side down the hallway.  He had the most beautiful blue eyes she'd ever seen on a man, not to mention how strong he was.  He knocked her down and she'd been the one who ran into him. “And I agree with your sentiment, you DO learn something new every day.” That was an understatement; Grace was suddenly worried about her father and wondered why he was involved with those men.  She knew it had to do with his job, but they had degraded and insulted her, his very own daughter.


“Ahh...I see.” Steve gave her a cursory once over, taking in the blood red hair and figured that was definitely dyed, her amber eyes not giving any indication of who her father was.  He didn't ask either, not being one to usually pry too much. “Sorry for knockin' you down.” He apologized, even though she had plowed into him.  She'd quite literally bounced right off of him.


“I should be apologizing to you.” She replied as they arrived at the cafeteria, turning to face him, staring into those blue eyes. “My name is Grace.  Grace Bearer.” She extended her hand, officially introducing herself, and smiled when his practically swallowed hers whole. “Thanks again for directing me here.” She slid her hand out of his and walked inside the cafeteria, the fear completely gone along with the chill she felt earlier.


Steve watched her go; pretty sure she must have heard her wrong.  Grace Bearer?  BEARER?  As in PAUL Bearer's daughter?  There was no way in hell THAT man had made something THIS beautiful!  No wonder she'd been on the verge of tears, she probably got the misfortune of meeting Paul's 'Phenom', snorting he shook his head and walked away.


Grace had some apple juice and a sandwich with chips before finally walking out of the cafeteria, not wanting to go back to that room.  Any place, but there.  She could feel the chills running through her body and rubbed her arms, suddenly slipping her jean jacket on and buttoning it up.  She felt so violated and...dirty when around those men her father worked with.  Though the blue eyed hunk she ran into...she suddenly smiled and squared her shoulders, knowing she would have to face the music sooner or later.  Taking a deep breath, Grace arrived outside of the locker room door and knocked twice before entering, looking around as the door shut behind her.


Chapter 2


“Father?” She called, frowning, not seeing anyone, her eyebrows furrowing together in confusion.


“He's not here.” ‘Taker said, stepping out of the bathroom, his hair wetted down for his upcoming match, busy pulling the top half back. “He had...business to attend too.” His acid green eyes raked her up and down, lingering on the blood red hair.  “I'm sure if there's something you need Grace,” Her name came out a slight hiss. “I can assist you.”


She swallowed hard, slowly backing up toward the door. “N-No that's alright.” She shakily replied, her smile hesitant, not believing how gigantic this man was. “Sorry to bother you...”


She turned to open the door and jumped back when his huge hand slammed against it, preventing her from escaping.  Now she was terrified and it shined in her eyes, her stomach twisting violently, and wrapped her arms around herself.  She stared back into his green eyes, beginning to tremble slightly.  Why didn't he want her to leave?  She wasn't a whore damn it!!


“You're afraid of me.” He said, sounding pleased with that fact, his face inches from hers.  Closing his eyes, ‘Taker leaned forward, inhaling her hair, his face moving down the side of her neck, almost touching her, but not quite. “And you smell delicious.” He purred, knowing he was frightening her and it just made the moment all the sweeter.  He was a heartless bastard.  He had been for years and nothing would ever change that.


Grace opened and closed her mouth, but words weren't forming as the fear began consuming her wholeheartedly.  She wanted her father; she needed him here to stop this, and kept taking steps back until her back collided with the wall, swallowing hard. “P-Please don't...” She whispered fearfully, tears in her amber eyes, her bottom lip shaking with the rest of her body.  She seen his head lift and their eyes locked, the intensity she found there nearly leaving her breathless.  Like Steve, his eyes were beautiful, but deadly and wicked.  Grace was afraid if her heart didn't stop thundering the way it was she wouldn't have one anymore, but for the life of her she couldn't move.


“Please don't what, Grace?  You must be more specific, dearest.” ‘Taker murmured, gently pulling a strand of her hair away from her face, rubbing the silky locks between his forefinger and thumb.  He stepped away from her, though his hand remained on the door, staring down at her, an almost concerned expression on his face.  Though his eyes gave him away with the malicious gleam to them.


She had to grasp a handle on this situation before she did something irrational. “I would appreciate it, sir, if you would stop touching me.” She stated slowly, pulling away from him as her hair slid from his fingertips, trying to have courage, but Grace was never one to fight or get into confrontations. 


She hadn't done a thing to this man and he was scaring the life out of her...and seemed to enjoy it!  Her back was still pressed to the wall, but she was scooting along it now, seeing the predatory gleam in his dangerous eyes and that just sent another tingle of dread down her spine.  She wanted to scream for someone to help her, but honestly, who the hell would be able to take down this monster?


“Why?” He tilted his head to the side, studying her from curious eyes.  Apparently deciding if he was in the mood to frighten her some more or find something else to entertain him.


“‘Taker?  Could you open the door?”


“Busy, Paul.”


“Have you seen Grace?” Paul called through the door.


“Why do you think I'm busy?”


“Dad!” She called out; her voice filled with fright, and bit her bottom lip when Paul began getting angry. “I suggest you open the door if you don't want to get my father angry.” She stated heatedly, crossing her arms in front of her chest, that fire in her eyes igniting briefly and immediately hugged her father as soon as his co-worker opened the door. “I-I'm going back to the hotel.  I-I don't want to be here anymore.” She whispered in his ear, seeing him nod and pat her hand before guiding her out the door.  Grace was still shaken up and took her hair out of the bun, running her fingers through it as it pooled down her back in waves, resting against her middle back. “I can take a cab.” She wanted to get the hell out of there and far away from the green eyed giant.


“Bradshaw can take her.  Lord knows we wouldn't want anything happening to her, now would we?” ‘Taker interrupted before Paul could say anything, leaning in the doorway, looking pleased with himself. “Bradshaw?”


“Yes?” Bradshaw appeared out of seemingly nowhere.


“Escort little Gracie back to her hotel.”


“No!” She nearly cried out, immediately calming herself down when her father squeezed her hand. “I mean no, that won't be-” She seen the blue eyed man headed her way and prayed he went along with this. “I already have a ride.” She smiled sweetly, grabbing his arm, trembling a little, her eyes filled with panic mixed with fear. “H-He's escorting me back to the hotel.” She seen her father's jaw drop and blinked, wondering what that was all about. ‘Please just go along with this, please!’ She thought frantically, staring up into his blue eyes, swallowing past the lump that formed in her throat.


Steve had no idea whatsoever what the hell was going on, but one look at the Undertaker's fuming face was enough for him to grin, wrap an arm around Grace's waist and nod. “Sorry folks, I already promised Grace a lift.” He stated.


“I wasn't aware you two knew each other.”


Paul wasn't either, his face devoid of color.


“Everyone knows Stone Cold Steve Austin, son, don't you forget it.” He sincerely hoped she picked up on his name.


“We bumped into each other on the way to the cafeteria.  I was in a hurry and bumped into Steve.” She felt him squeeze her waist a little and leaned against him with a heart stopping smile. “He was kind enough to walk me to the cafeteria and I told him I would be leaving shortly.  He offered me a ride.” She explained, sighing with relief that he was going along with this, the fear slowly diminishing from her amber eyes. “Father, are you alright?” Grace looked worried, seeing he was as white as a sheet, but she refused to leave Steve's side.  She had completely forgotten to get his name and was glad he smoothly offered it to her. “Ready to go, Steve?”


Paul already knew he was in trouble and could only nod. “Just...be careful.” He cautioned, looking at Steve anxiously.


“I'll take care of her.” Steve promised, eyes locking with the Undertaker's again, surprised that he hadn't been jumped.


He had considered ordering the attack, but didn't feel like Grace being caught in the mix.  It wouldn't be any fun if she was hurt, now would it? “See you soon, Grace.” ‘Taker said darkly before slipping back into his dressing room.


She couldn't suppress the shiver of dread that ran through her as she walked over, Steve following, and kissed her father's cheek. “No, YOU be careful.” She whispered before walking away with Steve, waiting until they were outside before pressing a hand to her chest, feeling like she might hyperventilate. “Oh my god...” She whispered, looking up at Steve with tears in her eyes again. “Thank you.  Thank you so much.” She wrapped her arms around his neck tightly, knowing he didn't even know her, but also knew he saved her from having to go back to the hotel with one of those men.  She owed him big time.


“Not a problem.” He laughed, gently untangling her from his neck, holding Grace at arm’s length. “Mind tellin' me what that was all about?” Keeping a firm grip on her hand, he guided her towards his truck.  Very likely, someone from the Ministry was no doubt watching them and he wasn't about to let them down, a show they would get. “‘Taker creep you out, didn't he?”


“That's an understatement.” She muttered, still feeling his breath on her skin and swiped her neck as if to ensure it was gone. “I went back to the dressing room to look for my father and he was there...” She swallowed hard, raking a hand through her hair, shaking her head back and forth.  “Forget it, it's not important.  Thank you again for going along with it.” She smiled up at him, the tears gone, the chill slowly diminishing once again as they walked toward his big truck.


“Again, not a problem.” If it pissed the Deadman off, he'd do it and with a grin.  Steve opened the passenger side door for her, smiling and helped her up before rounding to his own side.  In a matter of seconds, they were pulling out of the parking lot. “If the Undertaker gives you any problems, Grace, feel free to come to me.  I don't mind whoopin' his ass, especially for a good cause.”


“Well it's a good thing I'm not the only one who's not fond of him and I don't even know the guy.”


She couldn't believe how terrified she'd been of the Undertaker and bit her bottom lip, wondering if her father was alright.  He was completely pale when she left and she was afraid he was either going to faint or have a seizure.  Neither one of those thoughts comforted her as she stared out the window, pressing her forehead against the cool glass, wondering if it was such a good idea that she surprised her father by coming on the road.  Though when she looked back at Steve, a smile spread across her lips and she found herself being drawn to him.  He had protected her and got involved in business that he didn't have to, but he did anyway and she was grateful for that.




“You say she's recently graduated from med school?”


Paul nodded grimly, not sure if he liked the thoughtful tone of ‘Taker's voice. “But she's only visiting; soon she'll be doing an internship.” He added hastily.


“You know; I do believe there's an opening on the medical team here.”


He had KNOWN he didn't like that tone.




Grace sighed with relief and physically relaxed when the hotel came into view, ready for a shower and alone time.  Not that she didn't enjoy Steve's company because she did.  The jetlag was setting it though and she just wanted to relax, especially after getting scared to death by the Undertaker.  “Thanks again for the ride, Steve.” She flashed him a warm smile, wanting to lean over and kiss his cheek, but thought better of it, instead touching his shoulder before slipping out of the truck and closed the door.  She then headed inside the hotel and got her keycard before going up to her room, knowing her father probably wasn't staying at this hotel.  That was a good thing too.  Knowing wherever her father was, Grace knew unfortunately, the Undertaker would be right behind him.


Steve watched her disappear into the hotel, his blue eyes thoughtful, then caught movement out of the corner of his eye.  When he had turned his head there was nothing there.  Frowning, Steve left, hoping Grace would be alright.




Paul wasn't happy.  He had gone to talk to Vince about adding on to his medical staff per the Undertaker's orders, wondering just why he was doing this.  Granted he would love to see more of his daughter, but not at the expense of her being a toy for the Undertaker to play with until he got bored again.  He made it clear it was a temporary position he was looking for Grace, stressing that she would be starting an internship soon and just hoped she was.  Else wise he was lying for nothing.


Chapter 3


Later on that night, Grace laid in her hotel room, wearing a pair of black cotton shorts with a matching tank top, her usual bed wear -though she threw on the occasional nightgown- when a knock sounded at her door.  Raising an eyebrow, she finished the rest of her pizza she ordered from the place across the street and set her book down before going to see who it was. “Odd.” She murmured when she seen no one there and opened the door anyway, thinking it was a maid or someone who had gone off after she hadn't answered the door soon enough.


The minute she had opened the door, he stepped into view, in street clothes of black jeans that fit him like a second skin and a long sleeved black thermal shirt that hugged his muscular chest.  His hair was hanging down his back and over his shoulders, green eyes locking with her amber orbs instantly. “Hello, Grace.” ‘Taker said his deep voice calm, though when she tried to close the door on him, his eyes flashed with annoyance, a boot moving to block the door.


“Go away.” She ordered, backing up instantly, wondering why he was here and how he had found her.  She swallowed hard when the door closed behind him softly.  Though it was ominous, her eyes not moving from his.  “This is my room, I paid for it, now get out!” She tried a more forceful tone and seen the amusement shining in those dangerous green eyes, beginning to tremble again, taking a step back when he took one forward. “What do you want?” She resignedly asked, wishing she hadn't eaten that pizza because she was feeling sick right now.


“You.” He said bluntly, green eyes taking in the room with a snort before once more absorbing her.  ‘Taker advanced on her, more than amused that with every forward step he took, she was taking two backwards, though eventually the wall halted her.  He stared down at her for a moment then suddenly had her pinned, one massive thigh blocking her legs so she couldn't kick him, his lips capturing hers in a searing kiss.  One hand held her wrists over her head while the other kneaded her side.


A scream was muffled when his lips captured hers, her wrists squirming in his grasp, wondering what the hell this man thought he was doing by forcing himself on her like this!  Grace managed to rip her lips from his, tears shining in her eyes.  “Let me go!” She cried out, only for him to muffle her again with another kiss.  The man could kiss, there was no doubt about it, but the fear was flooding her entire body as she twisted and torqued her body, even bucking her hips. “Stop it!” She whispered when she managed to rip her lips from his again, trying to find some way out of this predicament while his green eyes blazed down at her. “Please stop it…” A single tear trickled down her cheek, knowing her father would be FURIOUS to find out what his co-worker did to his daughter.


“Why?” He murmured against her throat, kissing his way down to her pulse point, smirking when he felt how fast it was throbbing.  A second later he had lifted Grace up, wrapping her legs around his waist and resumed kissing her, feeling her now hitting him and tugging on his hair.  With a hiss when she wrenched back on his hair, his eyes fastened on hers, the usual green now almost black with lust.


“Stop it.” She stated forcefully, her lips slightly swollen, trying to gain control since her body was shaking against his, her hand planting on his shoulder.  When he went to kiss her again, Grace knew what she had to do.  Taking her pointer finger and thumb, Grace applied a pressure point to his neck, causing him to instantly drop her, knowing she was temporarily paralyzing his right arm.  She released it and stumbled back, wiping her lips off with the back of her hand along with the tears from her eyes. “Now, I'm only going to ask you one last time before I call security.  Get out of my room.” She ordered, being the top student in her medical class, Grace knew the body like the back of her hand, including how to defend herself against giants such as him.


His left arm was fine and he used it to lift her into the air, dangling from one massive hand, her feet hanging several feet from the ground.  His eyes were daring her to try something, snorting as her hands automatically flew to his, trying to free herself.  With a snort and a look of barely veiled anger, he dropped her.


Grace gasped for air, coughing as she scrambled away from him, absolutely petrified of him, her blood red hair flowing over her shoulders and down her back.  Her side was killing her, carpet or not.  Her eyes widened when he came toward her and closed her eyes, praying this was a nightmare that would go away, tears streaking down her cheeks. “Please go away, please go away...” She whispered to herself, though he could hear her, and gripped the silver cross in her hand that was around her neck, a gift from her father from four Christmas's ago.  It had her name engraved on the back.


His eyes fastened on the cross, arching an eyebrow. “You think that will save you, precious?” He demanded in an amused, yet thoroughly evil tone of voice. “While I might look like Satan, I am not.” He crouched down, staring at her, though remained out of kicking distance, now more than aware this assumingly docile woman was anything but.  Pulling that pressure point stunt.  Smart girl.  She was lucky he didn't return the favor with one of his own. “You look nothing like your father.”


She slowly opened her eyes, seeing he was now bent down as their eyes locked.  What was it about his eyes?  Grace took a few deep breaths to calm down, knowing she couldn't become hysterical because it wouldn't solve anything. “He is my father.” She stated softly, turning the cross over and showed him the engraving.


To My Gracie Girl, Love Your Father Paul


She sniffled, slowly standing up on shaky knees, and wiped her tears away. “Did you think I was lying or something?  Don't you think my father would have told you if I wasn't his daughter?” Her voice was soft and low, seeing he wasn't coming after her, and put some distance between them.


Paul’s been known to lie when the occasion suits him.  You think I'd employ him if he was a model of virtue?” ‘Taker snorted, not moving from his crouching position, looking like a panther ready to lunge at the merest provocation. “And anyone can give a pretty girl a necklace with daddy scribbled on the back.” He added nastily, smirking when she looked ready to cry or scream, rising to his full height, staring down at her. “Why are you here, Grace?”


“I haven't seen my father in four years and wanted to see him.  Medical school was rough with schedules and I know how much he travels.  I found out from Vince McMahon and the man was kind enough to send me a plane ticket.” She actually smiled, remembering that conversation, quickly clearing her head as she took another step back away from him, seeing he was ready to pounce. “I assure you, I am Paul's daughter.  I have my mother's eyes and my hair is dyed.” She wiped a few more tears away that fell, not believing she was explaining herself to this...monster that apparently got his rocks off by forcing himself on innocent women.


“Obviously.” His eyes strayed to her hair, wondering idly what she'd look like with black or maybe straight purple, a slow smirk crossing his sensual lips. “I'll let you get some sleep, Grace.  I have a feeling tomorrow is going to be long and quite interesting for you.” He chuckled at some joke only he was in on, crossing the room to the door, pulling it open. “Sweet dreams, precious.” The words were mocking, lingering behind long after he was gone.


Grace couldn't feel her legs as she dropped to her knees, the tears suddenly rushing down her face as she trembled from head to toe, covering her mouth with her hand, still feeling his kisses and had to pull herself up on the bed to curl into a tight ball.  She was telling her father what happened, though she doubted he'd be able to do anything.  Not turning the light off, Grace cried herself to sleep, clutching a pillow tightly to her chest.




Paul hadn't been able to sleep either, his mind refusing to allow him to do so.  He found himself thinking about things he had thought locked and buried deep, deep in the darkest recesses of his mind, sighing and shook them away.  How could he let himself be talked into…okay, fine, he had been forced.  He should have refused, taken his beating and sent Grace packing.  He knew better, she wasn't going to be a toy just because 'Taker had an ADD problem.




The following day, Grace woke up and took another shower, wanting to get the reminder of Undertaker's prints from the previous night off of her.  She then changed into a pair of blue jeans with a dark blue tank top, pulling her hair up then leaving it down.  It curled at the ends naturally, giving it bounce.  She did her makeup, eyeliner and gloss, like normal before slipping her white tennis shoes on.  Breakfast was serving for another hour and she was starving, not finishing her pizza from the previous night, thanks to her visitor.  She shivered, grabbing her jean jacket and keycard along with her rental car keys.  She'd completely forgotten she left her car at the arena and knew she'd have to call a cab to go retrieve it.  First things first - food.




“Look, I've been up all night thinking about it and I don't think Grace would be comfortable on the road.”


Indeed, Paul did look like he had been up all night, interesting.  On the bright side, he wouldn't need to wear makeup under his eyes to make half-moons. “I think I would be more comfortable with her on the road.  Besides Paul, that's your daughter, is it not?  Don't you want to spend time with her?”




After getting some cereal with a bagel, Grace sat down along with the paper, wanting to catch up on the news and whatnot.  She sighed, seeing all the crime while sipping her coffee, nibbling on her bagel, one leg crossed over the other.  Suddenly, the paper was pulled down to reveal stunning blue eyes, causing a bright smile to cross her face at the sight of Steve.  He didn't scare her like Undertaker did as she set her bagel down, her eyes glittering.


“Good morning, Steve.”


“Good mornin’, Grace.” He greeted, dropping down across the table from her. “I figured I'd come see if you needed a ride again.” He said, eyeballing her tiny breakfast -well, to him it was tiny- with an arched eyebrow. “Since you obviously didn't drive yerself here last night, unless you got a car at the arena?” He knew why she hadn't driven herself and figured if this was her first time in this city, she probably wouldn't want to be stuck with a cab.


A blush crept in her cheeks as she set the paper aside fully and pulled the keys out of her pocket, dangling them. “I was going to call a cab to go get my rental from the arena.” She admitted and smiled when he did.  God he had a beautiful smile and those eyes...Grace took a sip of her coffee, deciding she could always grab something to eat later on, hopefully with Steve. “One sec.” She stood up and threw her food away before grabbing her jacket, taking his extended hand, and allowed him to guide her out of the hotel.


“Now, I can either drop you off at the arena and you can take your rental, or you can take pity on a guy and ride with me to the next show.  Unless you'd like to catch up with your dad?” Where the hell was Paul anyway?  Steve hid a frown, knowing where Paul was the Undertaker was which probably meant Grace was playing duck and dodge.


She giggled at his joke, leaning her head against his arm. “If you give me a second to go grab my bag, I’ll ride to the next destination with you.” She softly said nodding when he told her he'd go get his truck and meet her out front.  Grace rushed inside and up to her room, checking out, and walked back out five minutes later, seeing he was waiting for her.  Somehow, she managed to get inside since the truck was incredibly tall, setting her bag on the dashboard, and buckled up.  She felt save with Steve and trusted him, even though she hardly knew him. “The hotel was kind enough to call the rental company for me.” She informed him, not wanting him to make any unnecessary stops, blinking when her cell phone started ringing and flipped it open. “I was wondering if you'd remember my number, dad.”


“Of course I did.” Paul said flatly, not amused by how things were turning out.  “Where are you, Grace?  I want to come pick you up so we can drive to the next show together.” Minus the Undertaker who had loftily said he wasn't giving up his bus -and the bed that came in the bus- for a miniscule rental car.


Steve tried not to listen.


Chapter 4


“Umm...well...” Grace frowned and chewed her thumbnail, glancing over at Steve and smiled at him reassuringly. “I sort of already got a ride.” When her father demanded who, Grace couldn't wipe the smile from her face. “Steve Austin.  I'm sorry dad.  I didn't know what was going on.  I was going to call you, but...” She took a deep breath, deciding she had to come clean about last night. “Daddy, your co-worker paid me a visit last night.” She trembled, clenching her fists on her lap. “H-He tried forcing himself on me and...I applied a pressure point.  I paralyzed his arm...” She couldn't believe she was saying this, but she couldn't keep it from her father, not even realizing Steve's expression. “He thought you were lying to him about me being your daughter since we don't look alike...”


Paul spluttered audibly into the phone.  “He did WHAT?” How DARE he put his hands on Grace?  Paul was going to… “Are you alright, Gracie?” He demanded anxiously. “Did he...did he do anything?” He knew from what she said he'd tried forcing her, but what did that entail?


Steve already had it in mind to show ‘Taker the true meaning of 'pure evil.'


Grace could hear the anger in her father's voice and swallowed hard, tears filling her eyes, and took a few deep breaths to calm down. “He...kissed me...tried seducing me...until I applied the pressure point to make him let me go...” Her voice was barely above a whisper, though she knew her father and Steve could hear her clearly. “I'm sorry daddy...” She gripped the top of her hair in her hand, trying to calm down again, having had a good morning up until having to relive the nightmare the night before. “I'm fine, daddy.  I think he was trying to scare me or something.  I don't know...he said you have a tendency to lie to him...whatever that means...” She sighed heavily, blinking her tears away.


Paul wondered just what sort of mind game ‘Taker was playing now. “Sweetheart, I'll get this fixed, alright?” He promised, not about to let the Undertaker ruin his time with his daughter.  It had been years since he had seen her, he wasn't about to see her running off because a jackass decided to torment her to insanity's edge then push.


“Alright dad.” She sighed gently, feeling Steve take her hand and blinked, having forgotten she was with him momentarily and knew he had heard every word.  She cracked a shaky smile at him and felt him squeeze her hand before returning to her conversation. “I'll see you when I get to the arena.  Drive safe dad.  I love you.” She nodded and rolled her eyes, his fatherly instincts kicking into high gear, especially after what she just told him. “I will be careful.  You too.  Bye.” She closed the lid of her cell phone and slid it back in her pocket, staring out the window, wiping a stray tear away that had slipped down her cheek.  She didn't let go of Steve's hand, feeling comfort and reassurance in it.


That was a new low even for ‘Taker, slipping into a woman's room uninvited and then forcing himself on her.  Somehow though, Steve wasn't all that surprised by it.  Just another thing to chalk up to ‘Taker's obvious dementia.  He was still having a hard time believing this was Paul Bearer's daughter.  Fortunately for her, she hadn't gotten her daddy's figure.


“Sorry about that.” Grace said once she had regained her composure, smiling over at him, and slowly slid her hand out of his, watching as he took it back.  She didn't mind holding his hand.  In fact, it was shooting electricity up her arm at the mere touch.  “So is your name really Steve Austin or is that just a wrestling name?” She asked, trying to strike up conversation, wanting to get what happened the previous night off of her mind.


“Nah, it's my wrestlin' name.” He chuckled, blue eyes darting over to her for a moment before returning to the road. “My real name is Steve Williams, but I like Austin better.  Maybe I should change it.” There was an idea; he stored that one away for later. “So how come I ain't seen you around before?  I've known Paul for years, somewhat, and never knew he had a kid.”


“He actually has three.” She said, causing Steve's blue eyes to widen, which erupted a giggle from her. “Dad never took us on the road; he didn't want us getting involved in the business.  He likes keeping his personal life separate from his professional and I don't blame him.” She now knew why, especially with the type of men her father was forced to work with.  Grace shivered involuntarily and smiled when Steve squeezed her hand, his eyes telling her everything was going to be fine. “I finally took the bull by the horns so to speak and called Vince McMahon and he sent me a plane ticket to come see my dad.” She explained, feeling one hundred percent comfortable with this man. “I take it your wrestling name is Stone Cold?” She asked softly, remembering him saying that the previous day when she suckered him into giving her a ride back to the hotel, not able to drive at the time.


“Yep.  Stone Cold, idea I got from my ex-wife.” He confessed, remembering that and snorted. “She said somethin' about my tea gettin' 'stone cold' and it kinda stuck.” Three kids, go Paul.  He blinked. “So are you the oldest then?” Steve genuinely liked Grace and the added bonus of keeping her away from 'Taker -which would drive the man up a wall-, was a perk.


“Actually I'm the youngest.” She giggled when his blue eyes widened, tucking a strand of a hair behind her hair. “My oldest sister is thirty-two and the middle is thirty.  I'm twenty-eight.” She smiled when he blinked. “I know I look younger than that.  I get it a lot.  Anyway there's me, Autumn and Justine.  Justine is the oldest.” She hadn't spoken to her sisters in what seemed like years, just like her dad, and sighed as a tinge of remorse flowed through her. “What about you?  Any siblings?”


“Three brothers and a sister, and they're all older than me.” He admitted, grimacing.  That had been fun.  “I see them from time to time, kinda hard though, being on the road so much.  Scott, Kevin, Jeff and Jennifer.” He rattled them off, smiling slightly.  “And several nieces and nephews that think it's cool to beat my ass.”


Grace laughed softly upon hearing that, seeing he was indeed a family man and wondered if he was married.  She hadn't seen a ring, and then remembered him saying his ex-wife gave him his wrestling name.  So he was single.  Grace grinned as she turned to stare out the window again. “Well we both know what it's like being the youngest then.” She commented with a smirk, hearing him grunt and giggled before grabbing bottled water out of her bag, suddenly thirsty.


“Getting your ass whipped, picked on, yeah, life was fun.” He joked, though he also could remember many times when his siblings had stood up for him when he'd been picked on or in trouble.  That was of course before he started picking back, a smirk on his face. “So, you just visiting or going to try getting a job with the company?”


“Visiting, though if an offer would happen to drop in my lap I would probably take it in a heartbeat.” Grace replied, meaning every word, even after what the Undertaker did to her.  She didn't have anything planned and needed to start her medical career somehow.  She decided to ask her father when they arrived and see if maybe there were any openings in the medical department of the WWF.  There would have to be, considering what the people there did for a living.  “Why do you ask, Mr. Williams?” Her amber eyes sparkled impishly back at him, raising an eyebrow and seen he was taking an exit.


“Honey, my dad answers to Mr. Williams, not me.  I go by Steve.  Or Austin if ya don't like me.” He added as an afterthought, pulling a bottle of water from between his thighs and twisted the cap off, draining half of it in one swallow. “What kind of job you lookin' for?” Steve asked curiously, looking her over.  She could definitely work in the eye candy department.


“Well seeing as how I like you, I'll call you Steve.  And something in the medical field.  I have training in almost every department.” She shrugged nonchalantly, that's what eight plus years of medical school did, though she rarely had a social life and only one boyfriend.  That didn't even last a month with how much time she devoted to her career instead of him. “That's why I'm here.  I just graduated from medical school and wanted to see my father before making a decision on where to do my internship.” Though the WWF was looking pretty damn good considering the man sitting next to her at the moment.


“I'd imagine there'd be an openin', considering someone is always getting hurt.” Or fired in the medical department.  He knew there was one female EMT and she was pretty much eye candy for the fans when someone got hurt ringside and she was 'needed'.  She was currently on her way out the door for sexual harassment that she did on one of the boys.  Now THAT was funny.


“I'll ask my dad, if he's up for it.” Grace was afraid she'd pushed her father over the line in the span of the past twenty-four hours what with Undertaker breaking into her hotel room and riding to the next arena with Steve, who was a total stranger to her.  Though she was slowly getting to know him.  She didn't regret taking him up on his offer, it was nice having the company instead of being alone all the time.  “You never answered my question.” She said, causing Steve to raise an eyebrow.  “What city are we going to next?”


“Oh hell, I'm sorry honey.” He apologized. “You don't mind me callin' ya honey do you?  I didn't even stop to think if you would, just- Oh, we're going to Houston.” Steve rubbed his bald head with a grin. “I'm ramblin', sorry, Grace.  I do that sometimes.” Like right now or when he was comfortable with someone.


He was so adorable.  Grace unbuckled her belt and scooted over, leaning her head against his shoulder.  He had tinted windows and hadn't buckled his.  She just wanted to be close to him and smiled when he patted her thigh gently. “You're cute when you ramble.” She commented, looking up at him, and smiled when those blue eyes glittered happily back at her.  Grace was definitely going to talk to her father about an opening, wanting to get to know Steve better. “So here's what I usually do when I'm trying to find out information about another person.” She sat up, still sitting next to him, seeing the curiosity burn in his eyes and smiled. “For every question I ask you, you can ask me.  That way we can find out information about each other.  Sound good?”


“Uh, sure.” Steve said, his blue eyes crinkling at the corners as he smiled. “Anyone ever tell you yer a bit on the strange side?” He asked playfully, wondering just how in the hell she could be so affectionate to a person she barely knew, especially given the reception she'd gotten from the Undertaker the night before. “Does that count as my question?”


Grace giggled softly and shrugged nonchalantly. “Yes and yes.  Has anyone ever told you how adorable you are when you ramble?” She smirked when he actually blushed and laughed, patting his shoulder gently.  Grace didn't understand it, she just felt like she could trust this man.  He was completely different from Undertaker in every way.  Maybe that's why she liked him and felt drawn to him so much.  Though his blue eyes melted her every time they looked at her. “Does that count as a question from me?”


“Yes and yes.” He shot back teasingly, smirking when she rolled her eyes. “Okay, lemme think.” What could he ask her that wasn't way too personal?  Thongs or French cuts were out.  So was lace or leather. “Got a boyfriend?” He asked finally, trying not to mentally call himself 'typical male’.


“Nope.” Grace grinned when his eyes lit up at the answer, her heart fluttering knowing he liked her as much as she liked him.  “Do you have a girlfriend?” She asked promptly, taking a sip of her water, ignoring her phone when it went off since she'd put it on vibrate.  It was probably her dad checking up on her and she was into this twenty questions game too much with Steve to let it be interrupted.


“Not at the moment, but I'm sure that'll change eventually.” Steve joked, smiling when her cheeks flushed a beautiful shade of pink, reaching over to squeeze her hand before going back to his bottle of water.  Finishing it and tossing it behind him, where he kept the rest of them until he cleaned the truck out.  It wasn't a rental, but his truck. “Hmmm...” He stroked his goatee thoughtfully. “Where's your favorite place to eat?”


“Hmm...I have to think about that one.” Grace had several places she liked to eat, tapping her chin in thought, smiling when he just glanced at her curiously” I'll say Fridays.” She answered finally. “What about you?” Grace wondered how long it was going to take to get to the next location and hoped it was all day.  She enjoyed being with Steve and loved to hear him talk.  He had one of the sexist accents she'd ever heard, though she always thought Texan accents were sexy.


“Depends on what I'm hungry for.” Steve replied honestly, having several favorite places. “You happen to be in luck because by the time we stop for lunch, we'll be passing through a city that has a Fridays.” He grinned, loving it when she just laughed. “That was a question with a purpose honey.  And did you answer me when I asked if ya minded me calling you that?”


“I don't believe I did.  I'm sorry.  No I don't mind it.” She loved how it rolled off his tongue, though preferred her name.  Any woman would though, but the nickname had a nice ring to it, especially from him.  His voice could probably melt butter in a heartbeat and she sighed gently. “Are you saying you want to take me out to Fridays, Steve?” She asked with a grin and took his hand when he nodded, squeezing it gently. “I'd love to.” Not to mention she didn't exactly get to eat her breakfast so Grace knew she would be starved by the time they arrived.


He hadn't actually asked her.  He was GOING to take her since he'd interrupted her breakfast.  That and he already knew he'd have to stop for something because he was getting hungry again.  “That didn't count as your question by the way, Grace.” He added as an afterthought, flashing another smile.


Chapter 5


This went on for what seemed like hours and Grace loved every minute of it.  She found out that Steve's favorite music was classic rock and country.  Either one she was fine with, but she did love the occasional Bryan Adams and 80's music.  She found out his favorite color was blue, his favorite books, just little things.  And of course Grace answered all of his questions.  Her favorite color being purple -which made Steve cringe for some reason, but she let it slide- her favorite book being Blood & Chocolate, favorite food spaghetti.  It was an all-around great conversation. 


After they ate at Friday's, which was delicious as always, Steve finally pulled into the arena a little after five and Grace felt a sadness creep up inside of her.  She didn't want it to end, but knew she would see Steve again.  She was NOT planning on spending her days in the same locker room as the Undertaker.  If she had too, she would spend them in the cafeteria, where people were around and witnesses.


Steve wasn't happy with being there so soon, wondering where the damn day had gone.  He slung his bag over his shoulder and stepped down from the truck, walking around to help Grace; just now realizing it might not be such a good truck for people shorter than him and chuckled.  His hands lingering on her waist for a moment before reluctantly pulling away.


“You need a ride tonight or are ya gonna ride with your dad?” He asked gently.


Nervousness crept into her amber eyes as Grace bit her bottom lip, sighing gently.  “Would you mind if I rode back with you?” She quietly asked, feeling him cup her face with his hand and placed hers over his, his blue eyes piercing her. “I'm sorry, I just...I know my father is going to be with-” She felt his finger press against her lips and smiled, her heartwarming even more.  His touch was so gentle and she was savoring it for as long as possible.  She felt bad that she was burdening this man with her problems and needing rides, but at the same time, she would get to see him and that's all that mattered right now.


“I don't mind at all, if I did, I wouldn't have asked ya if you needed one.” Steve said softly, more than tempted to kiss her, but that just wasn't a good idea when you hardly knew a woman.  Even though he felt like he had known her for years.  “Remember,” He said, taking her hand and leading her towards the building. “If you have ANY problems tonight, come find me, okay?”


“Alright, thank you again for everything, Steve.” She smiled sweetly up at him, holding his hand as they walked inside the arena.  She was shocked that he actually walked her to the locker room that said 'Ministry of Darkness' on it, briefly shivering and took a deep breath. “I'll come find you.” She promised quietly, feeling his soft lips press against her forehead, and reluctantly released his hand as she watched him walk off.  She couldn't wipe the smile from her face and shook her head, though that smile vanished quickly as the door opened and there stood Undertaker. “Where's my father?” She asked evenly, knowing he had probably seen that moment between her and Steve, honestly not caring.  He didn't own her and he damn sure was going to keep his hands off of her or else she was going to apply another pressure point.


“Busy, securing your new job.” He said coldly, eyes following Steve as the other man made his way down the hallway, a slow smirk coming across his face. “Nice to see you've moved on from 'us'.” It was a cruel joke, followed by him raking her over with his piercing eyes. “Come in Grace, I'm sure Paul will be back shortly.” He didn't give her time, just pulled her into the room.


“What do you mean my new job?” She was floored; her amber eyes widened in disbelief, not believing her father hadn't even asked her about it beforehand.  She seen the green twinkle evilly in his eyes and immediately went for the door, watching as two men -Bradshaw and Farooq, she'd remembered their names- blocked it.  What the hell was going on?  She had no part to play here and she damn sure was not going to be a prisoner!  “Undertaker, you forced yourself on me and remember what happened.  Don't make me do it to them.” She threatened, though her voice was shaky, her body trembling slightly.


“Grace, don't even think about it.  We're familiar with pressure points too.” ‘Taker said coldly, nodding to Bradshaw who applied one to her neck, sending a jolt of pain through her before backing up. “And by the time you got to one of them, you'd have the Ministry on you.  Now unless that's what you WANT, play nice.”


Mideon grinned evilly from his place on his knees at ‘Taker's side.


“Paul is preparing you for a medical career, that is what you majored in, is it not?  Be grateful your father cares so much for you to get you a good paying job like this.” Okay, so he had forced Paul to do it, but she didn't need to know that.


“You son of a bitch!!” She shouted, the anger flaring in her eyes, holding her neck and shook her arm, trying to get feeling back into it.  “You have no right forcing my father to do something like that!” Not that she minded working for the WWF, but it was the fact that this bastard had the audacity to force her father into getting her a job WITHOUT her consent. “Unlike my father, I'm not obedient.  Now move them right now...” The door suddenly opened and Grace ran to her father, hugging him tightly, startling him slightly. “How could you do this?” She whispered, slowly pulling back to stare into his eyes. “You used to teach your daughters right from wrong, is THIS what you've resorted yourself too, father?!”


Paul stared at her with confusion on his face, his gaze moving past Grace to the Undertaker, seeing the feral grin on the other man's face and frowned. “If you don't want the position, Grace, you don't have to take it.” He said quietly, his voice firm, ignoring the sudden cold look that had just taken over that feral grin. “I told them you might not want it to begin with and if you did it would most likely be temporary.”


Paul still had a set when it came to his little princess, how interesting.


She smiled softly down at her father and hugged tightly before kissing his cheek.  “I want the job, dad.  I'd love to spend more time with you and Steve.” She ignored Undertaker's snarl when she mentioned his name, her eyes sparkling.  “Though I'm not hanging around here anymore.” She could see the fire in her father's eyes, knowing he was still fuming over what the Undertaker had done to her the previous night in her hotel room.  She was his little girl, his youngest, and hugged him again when he smiled. “Next time, talk with me about this first before you do anything.  I was going to ask you about it when I arrived, but...” She took a deep breath to calm herself down. “It doesn't matter.  Thank you.” She was truly grateful and it showed, though now she wanted to go tell Steve the news.  “I'm going to tell Steve.” She glared at the men who were still blocking the door and sighed.  “Father, would you please tell the Undertaker to remove his men so I can leave?”


“Bradshaw, Farooq move.”


Mideon hissed, poking his head between Grace's legs and twisted it around to look up at her, smiling like a maniac.


Viscera snickered from his place.


Paul blew up and kicked Mideon in the face. “GET YOUR HEAD OUT FROM THERE!”


“Now Paul, be nice with my pet.”


Grace was trembling slightly, though she tried hard not to, knowing that's what the Undertaker wanted. “Dad, I want to go see Steve.” She murmured, watching him nod, and patted her hand gently before turning to face the Undertaker. “I may work for the WWF, but you can rest assured that I will not be hanging around here...EVER.” She felt her father put her behind him, placing her hands on his shoulders, remembering all too vividly of what Undertaker did to her the previous night.  She placed a hand to her throat and closed her eyes tightly shut, a tear slipping down her cheek at the memory of being choked. “Daddy...” She was truly terrified and it showed, deciding she was going to tell Steve everything as soon as she was out of here.


“Daddy...” ‘Taker mocked, ignoring Paul's look of hatred, knowing Paul couldn't leave him even if he tried.  Too many things tied them together, their shared interest in power for one.  Though it seemed like Grace was going to be a pain in his ass and drive a wedge between him and his sometimes mentor.  Too bad he had gone from the mildly wicked Paul had encouraged to downright demonic.  How that had backfired. “Daddy, please, I'm scared.”


It was disturbing to hear the Undertaker's mocking tone.


“Go on Gracie.”


She nodded and kissed his cheek, grabbing her bag, refusing to come back here unless absolutely necessary.  “Father, if you want to see me, I'll be in Steve's locker room.” She whispered quietly in his ear so only he could hear, nodding and smiled at him before nearly bolting out the door as fast as she could go. 


She had to find Steve as the tears poured down her face, trying to fight them back.  Undertaker scared her to death and now he was MOCKING her, no remorse showing in his eyes for what he did to her the previous night.  It was almost as if the man had no feeling, no heart, no soul and he probably didn't.  That's probably why they called him the Undertaker and that just made her cry harder as she searched desperately for Steve's locker room.


“You!” Paul whirled on 'Taker, knowing he was likely to regret this, but he had to put his foot down somehow. “Stay away from her!  She's not something for you to play with!”


“Then WHY, on earth, did you not send her home the minute you realized I was interested?”


“Because I made the mistake of thinking you could be decent.”


Now he was outright laughing.


Grace finally found the locker room that said ‘Stone Cold’ on it and knocked, wrapping her arms around herself, and looked up when those blue eyes came into view.  She didn't even wait and launched herself into his arms, burying her face in his bare chest, feeling his arms wrap around her in a tight embrace.  She couldn't even talk her voice too shaky as she tried getting the chill to go away, the chill only Undertaker erupted within her.  She felt him guide her into his locker room, not releasing her, the door closing behind them.  Steve had said she could come to him for anything and she hoped he meant it because right now she needed comfort and to feel warm again.  She needed him.


It didn't take a rocket scientist to know what the hell was wrong with her. The Undertaker. The thorn in everyone's ass. Sighing, Steve sat down on the couch, pulling her down into his lap and just rocked Grace back and forth, knowing she would tell him what had happened when she was ready too. He stroked her back soothingly, feeling her trembling against him and frowned.


Calming down about a half an hour later, Grace slowly looked up at Steve with red rimmed amber eyes, sniffling, and felt him wipe away her tears with the pad of his thumb.  “Sorry.” She whispered, looking down, and felt his hand lift her chin up as their eyes locked.  Grace smiled in spite of what happened, and wrapped her arms around his neck, inhaling his scent, wrapping herself fully in it.  He was comforting, warm, and he didn't taunt her for what she called her father.  That made a fresh batch of tears erupt as she felt him rub her back up and down with his strong hand, sighing gently. “I'm alright.” She whispered, slowly pulling back, and cleared her throat, taking the tissue he offered and wiped her tears away before blowing her nose, taking a few deep breaths.


Steve was inwardly relieved when she didn't try passing back that tissue, watching as she threw it into a trash can and frowned, staring down at her. “Grace, what happened?” Considering that the night had just only started, it was a bit soon for her to be here.  He'd figured halfway through the show, ‘Taker would begin toying with her.  He'd been off by an hour.


Grace cleared her throat and quietly told him what happened, everything, including the previous night with Undertaker choking her, him taunting her with her father, not leaving anything out.  She didn't like the fire that suddenly erupted in his blue eyes and swallowed hard, knowing he was angry.  This was all of her fault and Grace felt terrible, though by the tension from the previous day when she told Undertaker he was taking her back to the hotel, they hated each other before she arrived.


“Though I do have some good news.” She watched as the anger diminished in his eyes and smiled softly.  “I got a job.  My dad got it for me, though Undertaker forced him...” She frowned, not liking that part.  “Though my dad assured me that it was my choice if I wanted it or not.  I’m taking it.”


Steve had to wait a few minutes to let his temper simmer down before he said anything, knowing he was very likely to start ranting and raving if he did.  Finally, he took a deep, calming breath, forcing a smile to his lips though he felt anything, but cheerful.  Actually, he felt like knocking the Undertaker's head in.


“Well Grace, I'm glad you're stayin' but I'm not too happy how you got the job.” He said truthfully. “And it sounds like you might need to talk to Vince about what the Undertaker pulled.” Oh....he was definitely going to go to town on the Deadman for that one.


Chapter 6


“I will.” She sighed and slowly slid from his lap, wrapping her arms around herself, her tears subsiding. “I suppose I should go find out what all this job entails.” When he offered to escort her, Grace couldn't say no even if she wanted too.  Quickly washing her face and reapplying her makeup, Grace walked out of the bathroom looking fresh and brand new, walking out of Steve's locker room and didn't mind when his arm wrapped around her shoulders.  He was her protector, though she also knew he wouldn't always be there for her.  ‘I think I'm going to take self-defense classes.’ She thought, nodding as if making the decision, knowing she couldn't take any chances with the Undertaker around.


Apparently Steve was thinking along the same lines because, out of the blue, he said, “You know, there's an instructor that comes once or twice a week to work with the women here, the female wrestlers. He's a self-defense instructor.” He hated to admit it, but sexual harassment was a problem.  Not that he was one of the guys who'd been doing the harassing, but... “Maybe you ought to check into it?”


She stopped and stared up at him, a disbelieving smile on her face, taking his hand in hers. “You're a mind reader.” When he chuckled, she joined in and shook her head before leaning against him, slowly pulling back to stare into his blue eyes. “I would much prefer if you taught me, but I'll keep that in mind too.” She winked and felt him grab her hand, entwining their fingers together as he led her down the hallway toward Vince McMahon's office.  “On second thought, maybe I'll do both just to be on the safe side.”


“I could teach you a few things.” Steve said amicably, warming up to that idea. “A few easy wrestling moves that are really damn effective.” How to throw one hell of a roundhouse punch was on that list as well as maybe a haymaker.  He smirked at the idea of Grace breaking ‘Taker's nose or jaw with one of those, unable to keep the humor from his thoughts off his face. “This is it.” He halted outside the door, knowing his boss wasn't too keen on him. “You should probably talk to him alone, me and Vince don't always see eye to eye.”


“Oh okay.” She smiled back at him, stopping him before he could walk away, and kissed his cheek softly. “Thank you.” She whispered in his ear, those beautiful blue eyes melting her into a puddle and she agreed to come back to his locker room when she was done.  She was definitely riding back to the hotel with him and turned around, taking a deep breath before knocking on the door.  When she heard him shout 'come in', Grace stepped inside and smiled at Vince McMahon. “We finally meet, Mr. McMahon.” She said softly, extending her hand. “I'm Grace Bearer.  Thank you for the plane ticket.  It was kind of you, sir.”


Vince got up from his makeshift desk, walking around to take her hand and then pulled her in for a quick hug.  “It's nice to finally meet you.” He said jovially, gesturing for Grace to have a seat before dropping back down into his chair. “Paul has told me quite a bit about you, which was one of the reasons I sent you a ticket.  And please, call me Vince.” He added, smiling at her. “Now what can I do for you Grace?  Have you decided about the job?”


“That's actually why I'm here...” She bit her bottom lip and shook her head, remembering what Steve said. “Actually no, that's not the only reason why I'm here.” When Vince's eyebrow rose, Grace leaned back in her chair and proceeded to explain what the Undertaker did to her, including everything. “He apparently doesn't seem to know the word no.” She finished, seeing the look on Vince's face, and swallowed hard. “As for the job, even after everything I've told you, it's too good of an opportunity to pass up.  I heard there was a self-defense instructor that comes here once or twice a week, which I will be attending.  I have a right to defend myself against the wrestlers when it comes to that territory, right?”


“Oh yes, of course, most definitely.” Vince agreed, snapping out of his shock.  He had a hard time believing the Undertaker would do something like that for about thirty seconds.  Then reality kicked him in the ass. “If he...assaults you again, please, don't hesitate to let me know, Grace.  Of course, if you would like to press charges that is up to you.” Of course it wouldn't look too good for his company, but neither would another scandal.


“No, that's fine.  I'll let it slide this time.  Though I'm going to have additional help with the self-defense.” She wasn't going to mention who, remembering what Steve had said about how he and Vince didn't get along, and smiled brightly at him.  “Now then Vince, will you tell me what my entire job will involve?” She changed the subject smoothly, one of her traits, and crossed one leg over the other as he began telling her.  Basically it was running down to the ring to assist injured wrestlers and helping the trainer, Larry, with anything he needed.  Grace signed a contract an hour later and shook hands with Vince, who welcomed her to the World Wrestling Federation. “Thank you sir for the opportunity.” She was shocked when Vince hugged her again in a purely professional way before walking out, feeling ten times better than she had when she first arrived.  She couldn't wait to tell her dad and Steve.


Mideon crept out from behind the stack of crates he had hidden behind when he heard her coming to the door.  He shook his head, reaching up to rub the T with an X over it thoughtfully.  He had followed Grace and Steve then listened at the door.  Grinning like a mad man he scurried off to report what he had heard back to the Undertaker.


Grace found Steve's locker room and knocked, laughing when he told her to get her little ass inside and immediately embraced her.  “You are looking at an official team of the WWF.” She was glowing and laughed when he lifted her up, wrapping her legs around his waist, and spun her around in circles, finally setting her down on her feet.  Everything that Undertaker had done to her earlier had vanished from her mind. “I told Vince.” She said, causing him to nod once before that smile came back to her face again.  She quickly whipped her cell phone out and dialed her father's number, grinning when he picked up. “Daddy, I took the job!” Her voice was filled with joy. “And I'm going to take self-defense classes and Steve is going to help me.  Isn't that great?!”


Paul was about to leave the room, but seen Mideon creeping in, the man instantly dropping to all fours and crawling over to the Undertaker who inclined his head to hear what his 'dog' was whispering to him, a frown on Paul's face. “That's great, sweetheart.” He said, frowning even more when he seen 'Taker's hands clench the edge of his chair. “I'll talk to you more about it tonight, alright?  Just...stay where you're at Grace, I'll call you after the show.” He hung up, watching as 'Taker rose to his feet.


Grace hung up and stared at the phone, a worried expression on her face, swallowing hard.  Though she quickly pushed it aside and smiled over at Steve, who was sitting on his couch enjoying a cold beer. “May I have one?” She asked politely, watching his blue eyes widen slightly, and smiled when he nodded.  She grabbed one and popped the top, taking a few long swallows and sighed. “It's been ages since I enjoyed one of these.” She leaned against him, nudging him slightly.  “Steve, what's wrong?”


“Too long?  That's not right; a beer a day keeps ya healthy.” He teased, rubbing the top of his head, trying not to frown.  Though obviously it didn't do any good as Grace seemed quite able to read him anyways.  Wench. “I was just wonderin' what's gonna happen when 'Taker finds out you plan on learnin' to defend yerself.” He said quietly.  If ‘Taker was genuinely interested in tormenting Grace, he would not be happy to learn she was planning on finding ways to dismantle his ass.


Grace hadn't thought about that and suddenly felt the fear consume her, raking a hand through her hair, and took a few deep breaths as she took another swallow of the beer. “Vince told me if he pulls anything again, I can press charges.  I'll do that.” She quietly said, having a feeling that wouldn't stop Undertaker, but it would give her time to think of something else. “No time like the present to learn, right?” She grinned, wanting to put him back in a good mood, and set her beer down before extending her hands to him. “Show me those moves you were talking about earlier.”


“Oh okay.” Steve stood up, glancing at the clock to make sure they had the time before approaching her. “Basic self-defense and the instructor will wind up teachin' ya this is to run.” He said seriously. “If you can't, a kick to the nuts and not on me if you please.  Then...” He sighed. “I'm going to grab ya like 'Taker did okay?” When she nodded, he grinned, humbled a bit by her trust in him and wrapped a hand around her throat, squeezing only enough to lift her up. “Next time someone does try to attack you, use both feet to kick while yer bringin’ both your forearms down on your attacker’s arm - right here.” He gestured to his inner arm where it bent. “Try it.”


Grace nodded and brought her forearms down, having a feeling she wouldn't hurt him and did it, causing Steve to release her after a few times. “I really wish I would've known that last night.” She stated standing up, and smiled as she checked him to make sure he was alright. 


For the next hour, Steve showed her several moves, such as a Russian leg sweep and an arm bar.  That one would hurt because it hyper-extended the elbow, which she did to an extent to Steve.  By the time they were finished, Grace was exhausted, though she felt a little more secure with herself. 


“Thank you Steve.” She knew she'd said that a lot and smiled when he pulled her into his arms, kissing her forehead, and hugged him tightly around the neck.


“You're welcome.” Steve chuckled; hugging her back before groaning as a stage hand popped his head inside, letting him know he was on in five. “I have to go, Grace. Help yourself to my beer.” He teased, stepping away from her. “I'll be back as soon as my match is done, okay?  Lock the door and when I come back, I'll holler so ya know it's me, alright?”


She nodded, not wanting him to go, but also knew he had a job to do. “Be careful.” She softly said, his smile warming her heart and locked the door as soon as he was gone.  She walked over and sat on the couch, turning the monitor on, and helped herself to another beer, having finished her first one.  She smiled at his attitude and shook her head, leaning back, though her head snapped to the side when a knock sounded at the door, knowing Steve was already in the ring.  She decided to ignore it, hoping whoever it was went away.


‘Taker sighed when his knock was ignored; well aware Grace was in there simply because Mideon had been spying on her again. “Open the door, Grace.” He ordered softly, knowing she could hear him, smirking when he heard a soft curse. “I simply wish to talk to you about your father.” His tone was calm, soft, knowing if he said one wrong thing she'd never open the damn door.


Grace was nervous and scared now, hearing about her father, tears welling up in her eyes and slowly set her beer down on the table. “You can talk through the door, Undertaker.  I don't trust you.” She called back, swallowing hard as she tried like hell to be strong, her heart pounding in her chest.  When he said all he wanted to do was talk and he promised not to touch her, Grace cursed, knowing Steve wouldn’t be back soon enough.  Taking a deep breath, she unlocked the door and immediately stepped back, putting plenty of space between them, her fists clenched at her sides. “What about my father?” She asked in a shaky voice, her stomach clenching violently.


He didn't close the door as he stepped into the room, leaving it wide open so she wouldn't feel threatened. “Your father currently suffers from a heart condition.  Did you know that?” He asked, watching her face intently, seeing the shock she tried hiding. “No, you wouldn't.  He wouldn't tell you simply because he tries to protect you.” ‘Taker cocked his head to the side for a moment before shrugging. “What I'm getting at, Grace, is that for his sake, I will leave you alone.  Paul is important to me and I don't desire seeing him having a heart attack.”


She had to sit down, losing the feeling in her legs, and felt the tears spill down her cheeks, covering her mouth with her hand.  “Oh my god...” She whispered heartbrokenly, closing her eyes, and immediately backed up on the couch when he took a step towards her, shaking slightly. “H-How long has he had this?” She shakily asked, knowing he was probably the only one who knew about this, and suddenly stood up when he took another step. “Please don't come any closer.” She was crying now, terrified of this man, pressing a hand to her throat as if a reminder of what he did the previous night.  She would talk to her father about this later.


He hesitated then stopped, staring at her grimly. “A few years.  As long as nothing is troubling him, he's usually fine.  Though when something agitates him, his heart rate goes up alarmingly high.  He didn't and still doesn't want you to know about this.  It would hurt his pride if he knew I was here telling you.” He raked a hand through his hair.


She didn't care.  She was still going to talk to her father about this the next time they were alone, completely alone. “If you're expecting a thank you, forget it.  You lost my trust and respect when you decided to force yourself on me last night.  I have already told Vince McMahon and if you do it again, I will press charges.” She squared her shoulders, wiping her tears away angrily. “I will deal with this in my own way.  Now get out before Steve comes back here.” She didn't want to even look at him right now, pressing a hand to her stomach, feeling like she might hurl.


“I don't want your trust or your respect because neither hold any interest for me.” He informed her haughtily, like she was barely worth his precious time. “I could also care less what you told McMahon and feel free to press charges all you like, you're lacking evidence though, my dear.” Not to mention he had enough money to buy his way out of trouble if he ever was caught. “As for Steve...He'll be busy shortly with my Ministry.  Go ahead and talk to Paul about his condition, don't be surprised when he denies it.  Like I said, he'd do anything to protect his little princess.” Snorting, he walked out.


Chapter 7


For the life of her, Grace couldn't get what Undertaker said out of her mind as Steve drove her to the hotel later on that night.  He wasn't looking too worse for the wear, though the Ministry did a number on him.  He was hiding his pain, she knew it.  She could sense it.  Grace had tried calling her father several times, only to get his voicemail, and pleaded with him to call her back as soon as he could.  She had to talk to him.  How could he keep something like this from her, from the girls?  Grace was considering calling her sisters, but didn't, deciding she didn't want to drag them into this when she didn't even know if it was true or not.


Steve was more than aware that something was troubling Grace and lord knows he tried not to listen as she left her father desperate voicemails, wondering what had happened during his match to set her to panicking.  Finally, after they were parked in the hotel's lot, he shifted in his seat to look at her, concern in his blue eyes. “What happened?” He softly demanded.


“You need ice.” She quietly said, looking over at him with those warm amber eyes, cracking a smile for him. “Don't worry about it.  Get some rest.” This was the last night she would be staying at a hotel that wasn't with the WWF crew, simply because the hotel they were at had no rooms available.  Vince was paying for this room though so that was a plus on the side of things. “Thanks for the ride Steve.” She slid out of his truck, bag in hand, and closed the door before heading inside, too deep in thought.  Not to mention she was scared to death for her father's health and blinked tears away.


Granted he didn't know Grace that well, but what he had learned was that the woman talked a lot and had come to him with an ass load of problems concerning the Undertaker.  So this sudden distance thing had him slightly worried.  Steve quickly got out of the truck as well, hurrying to catch up with her.


“Grace, c'mon, what happened?” He asked softly, falling into step beside her.


“Steve, I've burdened you enough with my problems.” She softly said, really not wanting him involved in this considering it was a family thing.  Though it also involved the Undertaker.  She was so confused and she seen the hurt in those blue eyes. “Come to my room.” She grabbed his hand, having her keycard in hand, and nodded at the receptionist before heading for the stairs.  She was trembling slightly and felt Steve stop her in the stairwell, forcing her to meet his eyes, tears glistening in her own. “What?” She whispered softly.


Steve had been about to tell her she didn't need to worry about him.  He wanted to help her, but when he seen the tears and pain in her eyes, he forgot all about that.  Instead he inclined his head and kissed her, a soft gentle kiss.  When Steve pulled away, he pressed his forehead against hers for a moment, knowing he had probably just stepped over a line.


“I'm sorry.” He whispered.


“No, don't be.” She whispered and kissed him again just as softly, feeling her heart skip a beat, and smiled as his arms wrapped around her, deepening the kiss a little more.  She slowly pulled back, her hands resting gently on his shoulders, and her forehead was pressed against his, their breathing slightly ragged. “I really like you Steve, don't be sorry for kissing me.  I want you too.” Her voice was soft and sweet, she loved his arms around her.  He was so comforting and made her forget about everything bad -like the Undertaker- and anything that was wrong in her life.


Smiling, Steve took her hand, tugging Grace gently up the stairs. “Let's get somewhere private, and then I want you to tell me what's going on.” He said softly.  He really wanted to continue the kissing spiel, but...He also was pretty damn curious about what had happened tonight while he was in the ring. “Is your dad alright?”


“I don't know.” She whispered as they walked through the door and arrived on the third floor.  Grace walked up to her door and slid the keycard in the slot, opening it, and threw her bag in the corner before kicking her shoes off, Steve following.  She ran a hand through her hair and sat down; closing her eyes, and began picking at her nails, which were long and clear, natural. “Undertaker paid me a visit while you were in the ring...about my father.” She swallowed hard and couldn't look up at Steve or she would never finish this. “He told me my father has a heart condition and...when he gets upset, his heart rate skyrockets.  He said he was going to leave me alone because...he didn't want my father having a heart attack.” She felt the tears spill down her cheeks, quickly wiping them away. “I haven't talked to my dad in four years up until recently, Steve.  What if he's right?  What if my daddy is sick and he's not telling me or any of my sisters?”


Wow...It automatically crossed Steve's mind that this could just be one grand mind game of the Undertaker's, but that was a pretty big lie to tell. “Well,” He began slowly. “Paul is a pretty big guy, it's not uncommon for men his age or weight.” He felt like a jackass saying that, but it was the truth. “To have heart problems, Grace.  And if he's not tellin' ya, then it's probably because he doesn't want you makin' yourself sick over it like yer doin' now.”


“He's sick.  My father is sick.” Grace stood up and walked over to stare out the window, pressing her hand to the glass and felt the tears cascade down her cheeks.  She had to talk to him. “Undertaker said my father would deny it if I questioned him.” She admitted, feeling him come up behind her, placing his big hands on her arms and rubbed them up and down soothingly. “I hate admitting it, but that sounds like something my father would do.  He's always wanted to protect his daughters and wanted us to think of him as indestructible.  But he's not.  He's not indestructible and now he's sick.” Grace sniffled as her eyes drifted closed, her heart breaking.


“Grace, don't go makin' yourself sick with worry.  It's a manageable condition.” Steve assured her, rubbing her arms gently. “And he's managing it pretty well it seems; he's been runnin' around with the guys for the better part of a decade.  He knows when to slow down.” Of course if Paul was worrying his own self to death over Grace, then that was another matter entirely. “Why don't you try callin' him again?” He suggested.


Nodding, she slowly turned around and wrapped her arms around Steve's neck, hugging him tightly to her. “Thank you.” She softly said, pulling back and kissed him softly before walking over to get her cell phone out of her bag.  Grace had thrown it in there when she couldn't get a hold of her father after the fifth call, frustrated.  She pulled it out and flipped it open, sitting on the bed and dialed his number, chewing on her thumbnail, praying he answered.


“Hello?” Paul answered, sounding exhausted.  He hadn't bothered to check the caller ID, figuring it was either Grace or the Undertaker.  ‘Taker had been in an exceptionally good mood for the remainder of the night so Paul had figured the man was pleased with Austin's beat down.  He heard the slight sniffle on the other end of the line and knew this definitely wasn't the cold hearted Phenom. “Gracie?  Is everything alright, honey?”


The words of the Undertaker kept going through her mind as Grace stood up, beginning to slowly walk back and forth around her hotel room, not answering for a minute straight. “Daddy, if...if something were to happen to you...something serious...life threatening, you would tell me right?” She looked over at Steve, who was encouraging her, his blue eyes giving her the strength she needed. “If you got really...sick, you would tell me right?” She sniffled a little, wiping her tears away, and smiled when Steve handed her a tissue, now standing beside her.


Paul was silent for a moment, considering that, wondering what in the hell was going on with his daughter. “Yeah, if I was ill, I'd let you know.” He said finally, wondering where this was going. “What's going on, Gracie?” He demanded. “Not drawing up my will are you?” He teased, trying to lighten the tension.


“That's not funny dad.” Though she was smiling and shook her head, sighing heavily.  Grace didn't know if she should tell her father what the Undertaker said or not, chewing her bottom lip.  Wait a minute!  Why the hell did she believe that monster to begin with?  Taking a deep breath, Grace decided she wasn't keeping anything from her father and proceeded to tell him all that Undertaker told her earlier in Steve's dressing room.  “He scared me to death, dad.”


“I can imagine.” Paul said seriously. “Though I don't understand why you'd consider a heart condition something to panic about the way you did, honey.  These things happen to older people.  And pleasantly plump.” He added as an afterthought, laughing again.  He sighed when there was a knock on his door. “Let me call you back, Gracie.” He said. “Two minutes.” Then hung up.


She sighed heavily and closed the lid to her cell phone, looking over at Steve, frowning at the bruises on his handsome face. “You need ice.” She repeated from earlier, taking his hand and guided him over to sit on the bed. “I'll be right back; I'm gonna go get you some.” Grace squealed when he pulled her back against him, his arms around her waist, and she was staring down into his blue pools. “You need-” She sighed in exasperation when his finger pressed against her lips and went back with him as he laid on the bed, sprawled on top of him. “You're not going to let me go are you?”


“Hmmm...eventually.” Steve joked, kissing her forehead.  As tempting as it was, he wasn't going to jump in bed with her.  Well he'd already done that, but have sex with her yet.  Not after knowing her only a day and some odd hours, tempting though it may be.  “So is everythin' alright with your dad then?”


“He said he'd tell me if anything was wrong and pointed out that older people have heart conditions.  Then he said he'd call me back.” She sighed gently, her eyebrows furrowing together in worry.  She hoped he called her back like he said he was going too. “He said I shouldn’t worry to death over something like that, but he's my dad, you know?  I love him, I feel terrible now that I didn't contact him for four years.” The guilt would eat away at Grace until she apologized properly to her father, deciding she would do something special for him.  Though she had no unearthly clue what to do.


“So, did he come out and say he wasn't sick then?” Steve asked, knowing how sly Paul could be at times then frowned, seeing the musing expression on Grace's face. “What're ya thinkin' bout now?” He cocked an eyebrow at her slight smile. “Okay, now you got me confused, honey.”


“I'm going to do something special for him, but I don't know what yet.” Grace smiled when Steve physically relaxed, shaking her head. “You're overprotective of me.” It wasn't a question as she caressed his cheek with the back of her hand, smiling as he leaned into it.  Grace could stare into his blue eyes for hours on end, but she knew he would eventually want to leave and go get some rest.  Her mind was screaming at her to make him stay, but she didn't want to push him.  She wanted to take this slow, not wanting to ruin anything between them. “You really need some ice.”


“Yeah, I know.” Steve sighed with obvious reluctance, gently moving Grace off of him and sat up, glancing down at her before making a face. “I also need a shower.” He joked, getting to his feet with a groan, stretching his arms over his head. “You have my cell number.” She nodded, having programmed it into her phone earlier in the night. “So if ya need me, call.”


“I will.” She promised, walking him to the door, and brought his face down to hers, softly kissing his lips. “I wanted a good night kiss.” Her amber eyes sparkled when he smiled, god he had such a beautiful smile.  He was a beautiful man in general. “Go get some ice and a shower.  I'll see you tomorrow.” She was having breakfast with him and whatever else he had planned. “Sweet dreams Steve.” She watched him walk out of the door and softly closed it, pressing her back to it and felt the biggest smile cross her face.  She was gushing like a school girl, the butterflies erupting in her stomach.




The Undertaker listened solemnly as Paul explained his worries over Grace and how she was fretting about him, arching an eyebrow.  Apparently too many years in this company had made Paul forget that he was very likely to use this information for his own twisted purposes. “She's young, she's subject to worry when it comes to people she cares for.” He said dismissively.


Paul just nodded, frowning.




After a shower, Grace paced back and forth in her hotel room, frowning.  Her father hadn't called her back, probably dealing with the Undertaker. She snorted, shaking her head.  Whatever made her father side with HIM was beyond her.  She fingered the cross around her neck and sighed heavily, deciding she wasn't going to stay away from the Ministry's locker room.  She was here to spend time with her father and come hell or high water, it was going to happen.  She nodded and finally sat down on the bed, pulling a book out, a reader at heart.  Her mind was filled with too many thoughts, worries, and Steve, which made her smile, to sleep.




He sat in his own hotel room, wearing nothing, but a pair of black pajama pants, sitting in a chair at the window, staring out at the night time city sky with a glass of scotch in one hand.  His mind was on his current interest, Grace.  Being young and impressionable she had been all too easy to convince of Paul’s 'condition', though he wondered if that had been a lie since Paul’s face turned an interesting shade of red when he was emotional.  He drained the glass in one swallow, a cruel smirk on his lips.  Of course Paul had told her he wasn't ill.  Of course he wasn't, ill implied something that would pass.




Chapter 8


The door stared her in the face as Grace took a deep breath, bringing her hand up and knocking on it, watching as it opened.  She was in an Austin 3:16 t-shirt with blue jeans, her hair down, her shoulders squared, white Skechers on her feet. “Is my father here?” She asked Bradshaw promptly, raising an eyebrow when he just grunted, smiling when her father came into view. “Hi dad.” She hugged him and kissed his cheek. “Listen, I have to get going to Larry, but I wanted to ask you a quick question.” She was completely ignoring the Ministry, her eyes only on Paul.


Nudging Bradshaw back, Paul returned the hug. “What is it, Grace?” He asked, holding her at arm’s length.


Even though he was in conversation with Mideon and Viscera regarding their upcoming tag team match, he was still listening.  He hadn't missed Grace's attire and inwardly smirked.  He could see her in nothing, but one of his t-shirts, her face flushed, squirming as he…the thoughts trailed off.


“I was wondering when your next day off is.  I want to spend a day with just you, nobody else, a father/daughter type of deal.  It's been ages since we talked and I know we have a lot of catching up to do.” Her amber eyes were pleading with him, hoping he accepted the offer.  Steve had given her a wonderful idea, after the t-shirt as a gift, to take Paul out for dinner and the horse races.  Grace remembered how much her father loved horse racing considering he would go whenever he was off the road when she was little. “I was thinking some dinner and horse racing.” She suggested when he asked, watching his eyes light up with a grin on her face. “What do you say, dad?  Just you and me, some real quality time together.”


Paul started to open his mouth only to be interrupted.


“You have tomorrow off, Paul.”


Since when?  Not wanting to consider what the catch was, Paul just nodded and smiled at his daughter. “Is tomorrow alright, Grace?”


Her eyes lit up like stars and she nodded, hugging her father around the neck tightly before pulling back and kissed his forehead. “I'll make the reservations.” She slowly looked up at the Undertaker, knowing it was him who was giving her father the day off. “Thank you.” She said quietly before moving her eyes back to her father. “Okay I really have to go!  I'll call you tonight with the final arrangements.  Love you!” She kissed his cheek before jetting down the hallway, her hair flying behind her.


“What's the catch?” Paul sighed, turning to face the Undertaker. “Since when do I have a day off?”


“Since I discovered what a gorgeous daughter you have.”


Paul paled at that.


Grace nodded and went through the motions with Larry, even though she knew what she was doing...for the most part.  She wanted some real life experience though and got it when Andrew –who was known to the wrestling world as Test- came stumbling in, his forehead busted open along with Albert's.  She blinked and seen Larry give her a nod before snapping on some gloves, knowing suturing was part of the job description.  She didn't mind it and laid Andrew back before cleaning the wound, a sympathetic smile on her face.  She was going to like this job; she just had a feeling, and decided if Vince wanted to keep her permanently, she was going to stay.


“Don't forget to numb it.” Larry reminded, studying Albert with a frown. “What the hell did you hit?”


“Drew's head.”


Andrew snorted, smiling up at Grace. “Better check for stray hairs in my cut, that man is a wildebeest.”


Grace giggled softly and nodded, having numbed it with the needle like she was taught and dabbed the wound when it bled a little more. “Hmm nope, I don't see any.” She winked when he chuckled, taking a deep breath.


“Don't be so nervous, honey.  You're doing fine.” Albert said with a smile, groaning when Larry began the suturing process.


“I'm going to do some sutures, Andrew, ready?” She nodded when he gave her the okay and began.


“You just worry about what I'm going to do to you.” Larry said with a grin, watching Albert wince. “Boy, you got all them freaky piercings and your flinching over being sewn up?”


“The piercings don't last over a second.  In and you're done.”




She couldn't stop giggling when Andrew added fuel to the fire, finishing the suturing job before Larry, and put a bandage over it. “You're going to want to change that every four hours and you have a minor concussion.” She informed him professionally, taking her gloves off, and seen Larry was finishing up with Albert, smiling.  She made great time and knew Larry would be impressed.  Hell, she knew she was.


“I always have a concussion.” Andrew grumbled good-naturedly, glancing over at Albert. “Aren't you done yet?”


“He won't stop scrunching his damn forehead.”


“You're making me nervous!”


“Your head is numb, Albert; you do this every time you need stitched up.  Now knock it off or I'll sew your ass cheeks together.”


Grace completely lost it and started laughing her ass off along with Andrew.  She'd been working here for two weeks now and immediately hit it off with Andrew.  He was a fun guy to be around and so was his partner, though she didn't care too much for the piercings.  Currently she was trying to breathe as Larry smirked at her, shaking her head before patting Andrew's shoulder.


“Stop colliding heads and you'll be fine.” She said in between giggles.


“Tell that to the hairball, he's the one who can't seem to ace his dives.”


“It's not my fault you were in my landing space!”


“You're supposed to aim for the opponent, not your partner.”


“You know, you two remind me of a married couple.  What kind of PARTNER we talking about?”


“You two aren't...”




Grace raised a playful eyebrow, her arms crossed. “You sure?”


“Honey, even if I liked dick, which I DON'T, I can do a lot better than Drew.”


Grace laughed harder when Andrew literally face palmed.


“Oh yes, you could.  I can see you with Viscera.” Larry commented innocently. “Blue eyes and a blonde.”


“His eyes are white.”


“So you've seen them up close and personal?”


Albert shut up.


“Wait- isn't Viscera apart of the Ministry?”


“Yeah, which is why I wouldn't-”


“HA!  You admit it!”


Albert stormed out of Larry's office.


Grace was laughing too hard and was afraid her sides were going to split as Andrew went to push his partner's buttons some more.


Larry shook his head, pulling off his gloves and throwing them away before going to wash his hands, glancing back over his shoulder at her. “If you ever get stuck with Al, he's the biggest crybaby in the company.  He's also a complete teddy bear both in personality and looks.  You'll get used to him.”


“They seem really nice-” Grace was cut off when the door flew open and none other than the Undertaker stumbled in, blood rushing down his face.  Her amber eyes widened as Larry caught Steve, both of them with crimson masks.  Larry told her to grab Undertaker and Grace frowned, not liking that, but knew she had no choice as she guided the man to the bedding by the arm.  Larry was treating Steve, threatening them not to fight in his office.  She was shocked at his assertiveness and Grace swallowed hard, staring down into those acid green eyes before snapping on a pair of gloves.  The fates were being cruel to her as she glanced over at Steve, worry in her eyes. “Are you alright?” She asked Steve softly while wiping the blood from Undertaker's head.


“Not yet.” Steve snarled, ready to continue the attack, but Larry held a syringe up between his eyes, causing them to cross. “You ain't stickin' that thing in my head!”


“Quiet Steve and mind your manners.”


‘Taker was of the same mind as Steve, ready to attack, but froze when he felt Grace tending to him, staring down at her out of startled green eyes.


Grace didn't even want to know what happened as she cleaned Undertaker's face off, her eyebrows furrowed together in concentration.  She then injected the numbing solution in the wound, not believing how deep the gash was. “Larry, can you hand me some more sutures?” She asked softly, smiling at him, and finished dabbing the wound with peroxide to keep it from getting infected. “Okay try to relax.” She quietly said to Undertaker, trying not to meet his eyes, but she couldn't help doing it.  The color of them both startled and intrigued her for some ungodly reason.  Suddenly, a flashback happened that was not even two seconds long, causing her to freeze, the needle with the sutures resting over his forehead.  She shook herself, blinking, and began the process.


Two seconds or not he was a very observant man and hadn't missed it.  His face was a mask of stone while she worked, obviously used to being patched up.  His eyes never left her face however, studying her thoughtfully.  Considering she hadn't bothered to mask her distaste for him, he was mildly surprised that she hadn't asked to treat Austin.  He hoped that son of a bitch's head got infected.


“What the hell did he get you with this time?”


“A table.”


The entire time she sewed him up, all Grace could think about was all this man had done to her.  Breaking into her hotel room, though for the past two weeks, he hadn't touched or bothered her.  She was grateful for that.  Though she wondered how long it would last.  Then he had been...nice...and allowed her father the day off tomorrow for their father/daughter outing she already had planned.  It was almost as if this man knew what her moves were going to be before they happened and that unnerved her.  Grace was professional though and didn't tremble; sighing when she realized the wound was too deep for sutures.


“Larry, I'm going to need to do staples, this wound is too deep.” She watched him nod and pulled the needle out of Undertaker's forehead. “This is going to hurt, even with the numbing serum.” She informed him softly.


‘Taker snorted, looking like he just might roll his eyes. “Considering how I got the wound, I doubt staples are going to faze me.”


“Staple his fuckin' mouth shut.”


“I'm going to staple you two together and see if you can't play nice.”


“Hell no.”


“I'd kill him.”


“Enough.” Grace ordered, staring at Steve pleadingly before turning to her current patient. “The sooner we get this done, the sooner you two can go back to beating the hell out of each other.  But until then, you're under OUR care.  Now shut up and let us do our jobs so you can go back to doing yours.”


Both men just stared at her in shock, including Larry, and Grace just smiled before beginning the process with the stapling.  She had a feeling whatever Steve hit Undertaker with was a lot worse than what Undertaker did.  He did have more blood and his wound was deeper.  She sighed and shook her head, dabbing the blood away.


His nostrils flared impatiently, eyes straying to Austin who was watching them out of narrowed blues, fighting back a smirk. “You smell delicious.” He said quietly, seeing her eyes narrow.


“Steve, this doesn't work so well when you're frowning.  Come on, straighten out the brow.”


Grace sighed and smiled over at Steve, winking to let him know everything was fine. “Tonight dinner?” She asked, seeing his blue eyes light up, and giggled when Larry told him to stop flirting.  She wasn't going to let Undertaker get to her and had been taking self-defense courses along with Steve's one on one sessions.  She seen the disdain in Undertaker's green eyes and kept stapling, closing the wound with her fingers, pinching it before adding another one, like she was trained.


“Fridays?” He suggested with a grin, knowing that was her favorite place and had to wipe the grin off his face when Larry rapped his skull. “Don't be touchin' the dome, you know I hate that.”


“Hence the reason I do that, no smiling.”


He just stared at her, behind the blank green eyes, his mind already at work.


“You remembered.” Grace laughed, her eyes shining with happiness back at Steve while she finished stapling Undertaker's head.  She then spread solution over it to keep infection out before putting on a white bandage, nodding. “You probably already know this, but I'm going to tell you anyway.  You have a major concussion and you're going to need to take it easy, which I know you won't.  You're done.” She took her gloves off and threw them away before going to wash her hands, her hair pulled back in a low ponytail to keep it out of her face.


“You'd be done too if you'd stop grinning.” Larry chastised.


“Well, I- SON OF BITCH!” Steve yelled, the Undertaker's fist having flown right into his forehead, needle and all.




Snorting, he slipped out of the room.


Chapter 9


Grace gaped as she spun around, seeing what he did and immediately rushed over to Steve. “Jesus...” She slapped on another pair of gloves and pulled the needle out, sighing with relief when she seen it didn't puncture the bone. “You're fine.” She assured him, watching as Larry stormed out to go get security, deciding to finish the job as she began dabbing the wound again, fresh blood having oozed out. “I hate seeing you hurt.” She whispered kissing his lips softly since Larry wasn't in there, still not believing Undertaker had attacked him.


“Don't hurt much, just pisses me off.” Steve said through gritted teeth, lying obviously.  That had hurt like a son of a bitch.  ‘Taker had brass balls pulling that stunt. “Doc, I think I like your bedside manner.” He teased, trying to get her to smile.


“Slick son of a bitch is gone.  I hate when he does that.  Grace, I have to go let Vince know and file a report, you got this?”


“Go ahead Larry.” Grace assured him, seeing how mad he was, and honestly didn't blame the man.  Though she had a feeling this hadn't been the first time Undertaker pulled something like that and wouldn't be the last. “I'm sure you do.” She said softly when Larry was gone and kissed him again, being careful not to get blood on herself as she began suturing him. “Relax.” She whispered in his ear, smiling when he did so and began the process. “So you said Fridays?  Are you going to be up for it after what's happened tonight?”


“Of course I am, this ain't the first time he's pulled somethin' like this and it probably won't be the last.” Steve assured her, forcing himself not to smile though it was in his baby blues. “Unless of course, yer not in the mood.  If you're tired, I understand.” Given that she had just got to see a needle go into someone's forehead in a way not meant to ever happen.


“I'm always in the mood for you; you should know that by now.” She replied with a smile, loving how his baby blues glittered up at her, and finished the suturing with ease. “You know; Larry would've been done a lot quicker if you wouldn't give him such a hard time.” She chastised, putting the white bandage on his forehead, and took the gloves off.  She let him draw her into his strong arms and kissed her, moaning softly, and had to pull back in case Larry came back. “You're going to get me in trouble.” She whispered playfully.


“Best kind of trouble there is.” Steve murmured, his lips brushing against hers lightly. “Besides, the worst that'll happen is he'll make some comment about-”


“I thought you were fixing his head; his lips were working fine.”




Grace turned a deep crimson red and shook her head, knowing she shouldn't be getting involved personally with her patients, but Steve was the exception.  Everybody knew about them, though they hadn't made their relationship official yet.  She didn't mind.  It's not like he was going out screwing other women or something like that.  He was with her when he wasn't in the ring, though Larry threatened him to not distract her.


“His head is fixed.” She finally said, smiling when Steve kissed her again and hugged him tightly around the neck. “Now please don't go after him until that's healed.” Her amber eyes were pleading with him, not wanting to see him anymore injured than he was.


“Oh sure, that'll be the day.” Larry snorted, not watching them, busy writing his report. “Steve, do you have ANY idea how many of these I've done in the past year alone?  You and ‘Taker really need to keep your fights in the ring.”


“Hey, he started it.”


“Well even I knew that, he always does.  What'd he do?”


“Breathed in my air.”


Rolling her eyes, Grace smacked him upside his bald head, causing him to growl at her. “Don't give me that.  Now I want you to promise me you won't go after him until THAT,” She prodded his wound, causing him to growl again. “Is healed.” She wasn't stepping down and crossed her arms in front of her chest, her lips pressed in a firm grim line. “Do it or I'm not going out to dinner with you tonight.” When he grumbled and reluctantly agreed, she smiled and hugged him again. “Now get outta here.  I have more patients to see.  I'll meet you in the parking lot when I'm finished with Larry.”


“See what happens, I get a woman and I turn into a softie.”


Larry smirked at Steve's grumbling. “Well if that's the case, Grace can you find ‘Taker a woman?”


“She'd have to be dead, Larry.”


“You.  Out.”


Grace giggled softly and kissed Steve once more before shutting the door behind him, sighing. “That man...” She seen Larry smirking. “What?  No I am not finding the Undertaker a woman.  The man doesn't deserve one with how he treats women.” She knew that from personal experience and helped Larry clean up, hoping they were done for the evening since the show was coming to a close.


“Yeah, but if it calms his ass down, think of all the supplies we'd save!  Not to mention half of my paperwork problem would disappear.” At Grace's wide eyes, Larry nodded. “Half of every report I file has to do with him or his Ministry.  He doesn't keep things in the ring and it's a major problem.  Vince won’t get rid of him either because he's a major draw.”


“You're serious about this.  You want me to find him a woman?” Grace was incredulous and blinked, shaking her head. “Larry, I'm not going to subject my innocent friends to that Satan wanna-be.  I flat out refuse.” When he sighed resignedly, she smiled. “I don't think there is a woman on this planet that can tame him to be honest with you.  He's a monster and thrives off of people's pain and fear.” She knew she was right, it was all one giant game to the Undertaker and she refused to play.


“Yeah, you got a point.  It was a good idea though.” Larry sighed again, shaking his head before slipping a copy of the report into an already preaddressed envelope, scribbling Undertaker on the corner with a roll of his eyes. “Maybe he likes guys...I've yet to see him with a woman and there are those that do throw themselves at him.  Must be on drugs...”


Grace giggled and nodded, not about to doubt that for a minute. “You're probably right.” She finished cleaning up and nodded, seeing nobody else was coming their way for the evening. “I'll see you tomorrow Larry.” She called over her shoulder, seeing he was already heading to drop the envelope off, and shook her head before heading down the hallway.  Steve was waiting for her and she couldn't wait to be in his arms, her heart fluttering at the thought.


A hand shot out of a dark room, pulling her inside, the door closing behind her.  Within seconds Grace was pinned to a wall, lips capturing hers in a passionate, demanding kiss.  Hands roamed her sides, expertly bringing her body to life, feeling her melting against him.  Most likely against her will, but the body would always win.


Grace was too shocked to fight this attacker off right away, her hands splayed against the wall as they kissed her hungrily, lighting her body on fire.  She tried fighting him off, knowing it was a male judging by how big his hands were, though her body was betraying all sense of rational thought.  Suddenly, Steve flashed in her mind as she used all of her strength to shove the attacker off of her, her lips swollen and tried seeing through the darkness.


“No!” She cried out hoarsely only for those lips to descend on hers again.  Grace felt herself being lifted; wrapping her legs around his waist, her hands still pressing against the unbelievably strong chest, but it was no use.


Those fiery kisses moved to her throat, attacking until finding her hot spots, then nibbling and sucking on her sensitive skin, hearing her unwilling moan.  One hand trailed between their bodies, cupping her jean covered sex, grinding his heel against her.  He knew what he was doing, how to drag those moans out of her, make her feel things she didn't want to feel.


“No...please don't...” She gasped out, gripping broad shoulders, tears filling her eyes at the betrayal to Steve.  


She couldn't help it!  She was being attacked.  It felt wonderful though, exquisite, the feeling causing her to tingle, moaning in spite of herself.  She felt sick to her stomach, but her body was betraying her, shaking her head back and forth, her cries muffled as those lips covered hers again, trying once again to fight him.  She was defenseless right now and could only moan against his lips, her hips bucking with every movement, her thighs tensing.


Ignoring her pleas, he continued his delicious assault.  The sound of her jeans unsnapping and then unzipping echoed throughout the room, his hand sliding down her jeans and panties.  A finger delved into her wetness, the evidence of her arousal apparently pleasing him because he grunted, slipping that finger past her folds.  Feeling her inner walls gripping the digit as he began to slide it in and out of her, feeling her hips begin to move with him.


Grace knew what she had to do and closed her eyes, seeing those intense baby blues staring in her mind, a smile crossing her lips.  She envisioned it was him doing this and began moving her hips back and forth, bringing her closer and closer to the edge. “Steve...” She breathed out in a moan, hearing a growl and ran her hands up the arms of the attacker to his shoulders. “Mmm so good...” She suddenly applied two pressure points to the attacker's neck, causing him to drop her instantly on the floor, cursing up a storm and kicked him in the stomach since both of his arms were paralyzed.  She was trembling from head to toe and kicked him one more time before good measure, tears streaming down her face, having already fixed her jeans before going to the door, crying out when she realized it was locked. “No!!  Someone help me!!” She shouted through it, banging on it with her fists.


The Undertaker began laughing, pushing himself with his feet back to a wall and then to his vertical base, smirking as she flipped on the lights.  His green eyes were filled with unsuppressed desire, licking his lips. “Just think Grace, when you're making love with your boyfriend, it won't be him you're thinking about.” He taunted, seeing the flush in her cheeks and knew he had affected her more than she would ever admit.


More tears flowed as she pressed her hand tightly to her stomach, shaking her head back and forth. “Steve is ten times the man you'll ever be!!” She seen the fire flare in his green eyes, swallowing hard and ducked when he came at her.  She did a leg sweep, causing him to hit the hard floor with a sickening thud before taking his arm, applying an arm bar.  There was no way out of this as she wrenched back on his arm, hearing him growl out in pain, finally hearing something crack before releasing him. “You bastard!!” She shouted, kicking him below the belt, and stumbled back.  She knew how to defend herself now and started kicking the door, glancing behind her, seeing he was still incapacitated.  “SOMEONE HELP ME!!” She finally screamed at the top of her lungs.


The door flew open and a very pissed off Stone Cold Steve Austin stood there, his eyes quickly taking in the scene, turning to pure ice.  He stepped aside for Grace to bolt, staring down at the Undertaker.  He smirked, seeing those defense lessons had come in handy.


Groaning, he raised his head, licking blood from his lips and smirked back. “She's quite a peach, isn't she?”


Even after having his ass handed to him, the man was STILL a sick bastard.  Steve didn't think twice about planting his boot in the Undertaker's face, watching the man go unconscious.


Grace was sobbing violently as she flew out of the arena and felt the cold night air engulf her as she dropped to her knees, trembling from head to toe, shaking her head back and forth and gripped her hair in her fingers.  She wanted to be as far away from Undertaker as possible and got up, running down the street toward the hotel.  She screamed when she was suddenly grabbed from behind and began thrashing her body, fighting them off as much as she could.  When they spun her around, Grace cried harder at the sight of Steve and immediately stopped, wrapping her arms tightly around his neck.  Her lips were still swollen and her face was tear-streaked, needing a shower to wipe his prints from her body.  She shuddered violently and suddenly spun around, vomiting while Steve held her hair back.


Steve had made sure security knew where to find the moron, having heard Larry screaming up a storm, but knew Grace needed him.  When she had finished heaving out all her past week's meals, he gently pulled her to him for another hug. “You need to go in there and report whatever he did to you.” He had a very good idea of what had happened, but couldn't think on it.  He'd go insane and murder that sick bastard.


Grace knew he was right, but she didn't want to leave him. “Come with me.” She pleaded quietly, watching him nod, and sniffled as he wrapped an arm around her shoulders, knowing their dinner plans were officially cancelled for the evening. 


She still couldn't believe Undertaker attacked her the way he had, shivering involuntarily.  He wasn't going to leave her alone; he had lied to her!  Did that mean he was lying about her father's condition too?  Grace cried harder as she walked inside the arena and toward Larry.  She wasn't surprised when he pulled her into a fatherly embrace, blaming himself since he'd allowed Grace to walk outside by herself, and she assured him it wasn't his fault.  He had to stay behind and Steve had been waiting for her outside.  She filed the report to him, since Vince had already left, telling him everything that happened.  Steve was listening in, she knew it and nodded when Larry finished, signing the paperwork and put it in an envelope.


Chapter 10


Paul appeared in the doorway, panting and red faced having run all the way from the other side of the arena.  Mideon had relayed to him what had happened, though he was sure he hadn't gotten the full details.  He could still remember Mideon's suggestive leer as he said ‘‘Taker and your little poppet are getting to know each other better'.  Then he had to stop when he seen ‘Taker being hauled out on a gurney, praying Grace was alright.


“Daddy!!” Grace cried as she ran to him, tackling him with a tight embrace, the sobs overwhelming her as she trembled violently against him. 


She was scared to death now, though she had defended herself and hoped she broke something.  She heard a snap in Undertaker's shoulder and hoped it was dislocated.  That would send the man off the road for a few days at least.  She didn't let her father go and dropped to her knees, feeling him hold her up as she buried her face in his neck.  This was her daddy and she needed him right now.


“Dear Lord, what happened?” He demanded, holding her tightly, patting Grace on the back soothingly, worry in his eyes as he looked at the other people in the room, all of who looked away apparently not too keen on telling him. “What'd he do?” He whispered his heart dropping to his knees.


“What do you think?”


Through sobs, Grace told her father what she told Larry, having to pull away to stare into his eyes.  She seen the rage building in them and sniffled, hugging him again.  She felt Steve pull her away from her father and wrapped her arms around his neck, crying her heart out and felt him lift her in his arms, sitting on the bedding, refusing to let him go.


“Steve saved me...” She whispered, watching as her father walked over and shook the man's hand.  Grace knew her father was probably going to do something and honestly didn't want to know what it was.  She just wanted to go back to the hotel, feeling dirty and disgusting. “H-He lied to me...about leaving me alone...” She sobbed harder. “H-He probably lied about...your condition...too...”


“What condition?” Paul demanded frowning as he realized that’s what's Grace was referring too when she called him, asking if he was sick if he would tell her. “This is an all-time low, even for him...” He sighed, chewing on his thumbnail nervously.


“So drop him like a bad habit.  You don't owe him anything.”


Paul just grunted.


“H-He lied to me about that too?” Grace was hysterical now as she slid from Steve's arms, wrapping her arms around herself tightly. “I-I want to go back to the hotel.  I want to go back to the hotel NOW.” She ordered, both angry and frightened beyond reason. “Daddy, come with me.  You can stay in my room tonight.” When he hesitated, Grace just hugged him tightly, sniffling and sobbing harder. “Daddy please, I don't want to be alone tonight.  I defended myself and probably angered him.  I'm afraid he's going to try something else.  Please.  I want someone to stay with me.”


“Um, no, he's not.  He's in the county hospital with a dislocated shoulder.” Larry spoke up. “Concussion and mild paralysis to the arms as well as a swollen...”






Paul nodded when she asked him to come back with her. “Of course, honey, of course.  Calm down.  Did you file a sexual harassment claim against him?”


She nodded, sniffling, and turned to face Steve with guilt in her eyes. “I'm sorry about tonight.” She whispered, feeling him draw her into his arms, and hugged him tightly before kissing his lips softly. “I'll call you tomorrow after I'm done with my father.” She promised, tapping his nose. “We'll do something then.” She smiled even through tears as he kissed her again before taking her dad's hand, letting him guide her out of Larry's office.


Paul drove back to the hotel, knowing his daughter was in no condition to be behind a wheel.  He froze in pulling on his seat belt when he seen Kane sitting on top of his rental car, sitting Indian style on the hood.  He glanced at Grace who was staring at him curiously before clearing his throat, hastily backing up and then out of the lot.


“Who was that?” She asked softly, turning around to stare back at the man that was on the hood, raising a slow eyebrow.  When all her father said was Kane, Grace nodded before turning back around and leaned back against the seat, closing her eyes.  She could still feel Undertaker's hands on her, his lips...she shuddered and rubbed her arms up and down, trying to get warm.  She missed Steve already.


Paul didn't miss the shudder and turned on the heat, knowing it was a very stupid gesture, but...He couldn't think straight.  He knew he was going to burn in Hell, oh yes he was and he deserved so much more. “Are you hungry?” He asked softly, having a feeling if she tried eating something it would come right back up.  He had never thought the Undertaker would do this, but then again, he could see it a mile away.


“No, I'm not.” She whispered, not looking over at him, and squeezed his hand as she stared out the window. 


She inhaled the shirt she was wearing and closed her eyes, a smile crossing her lips at Steve's scent.  She knew she was slowly falling for him, though Undertaker was going to be a problem.  Grace could only hope he left her alone after all the damage she'd done to him tonight and somehow, she doubted it.


“I didn't think so.” Paul murmured his mind on ‘Taker. 


Of course, he wouldn't learn his lesson and move on to his next victim.  Grace defending herself would only make her that much more appealing.  He inwardly groaned, wondering just what it would take to convince 'Taker to leave her alone.  Next time, the Phenom would be expecting an attack and be prepared.  Lord have mercy.




“Wait up!” 10-year-old Grace shouted as she rushed from her father's car up to her best friend, Mark, who was currently popping a baseball up and down in the air.  They'd been friends since her father started at the funeral home.  Grace smiled, wearing a black skirt with a white dress top, her sandy blonde hair pulled back in a ponytail with a black ribbon, black shoes on her feet.


Mark snorted, rolling his green eyes as he waited for her, a baseball cap on his head as he studied her. “You're wearin' a skirt.” He said with a sneer. “Girls can't play ball-” He groaned when she caught the ball midair. “Fine, I take it back.  You ready or what?” He turned and hocked a wad of spit, smirking. “Let's see ya try that.”


“Eww that's gross!!” She groaned, shaking her head with a smile on her face.  She glanced to her left, seeing Mark's little 7-year-old brother, Glen, playing in the sandbox.  Of course, he wasn't cool enough to hang with the big kids, though Grace felt bad for him nonetheless. “You are so gross, Mark.  Why do I hang out with you again?”


“Because I'm interestin'.” He said with a smug smile, glancing to the left as well, rolling his eyes. “Glenie boy's been cryin' again.” He said in a loud whisper. “He seen somethin' he didn't like.” His face lit up with an idea. “Hey Gracie, how brave are you feelin' today?” He asked, his tone challenging.


“What do you mean?” She asked, sighing as Glen glared at his big brother, shaking her head. “You really should be nicer to your brother, Marcus.” She giggled when he growled, knowing how much he hated being called by his full name. “Marcus, Marcus!” She laughed and began running away from him, her ponytail bouncing with every move she made.


“Come here!” Mark hollered, chasing her, his longer legs quickly catching up and tackled her into the grass, grunting as he landed on her.  Mark pinned her down, arms at her sides. “Take it back, Grace, or else!” He threatened, trying not to grin. “Take it back or I'm gonna hock one right in yer mouth.” To demonstrate his point, he made a rasping noise in the back of his throat, building a fresh wad of spit.


“No!  Don't you dare!” Grace struggled against him, though for an 11-year-old boy he was incredibly fast, strong and tall. “Okay, okay I'm sorry!!” She was laughing though, staring back into his green eyes, and felt him release her, groaning when she seen the grass stains on her white shirt. “My daddy is gonna kill me when he sees this.” She sighed, seeing the smirk on Mark's face, and tackled him to the grass, catching him by surprise. “Now what was that about bein' brave?” She demanded, her amber eyes shining back at him.


“Marky and Gracie sittin' in a tree...”


“Glen, knock it off.”




“Glen, if ya don't shut your mouth I'm gonna kick your teeth down your throat.” Mark called from his place under his friend, shooting his brother a deadly look.  “What teeth ya got anyways, BABY.” When Glen had burst into tears and run off, he smirked, looking back up at her with an innocent expression. “What?”


“You are so mean to him!” Grace shouted, standing up and began running after Glen, knowing he was going to tell his parents.  She sighed when Mark stopped her and crossed her arms in front of her chest, her lips pursed tightly together. “You gonna tell me about this challenge or what?” She demanded, not believing how much Mark instigated his little brother.  Though they were four years apart and Mark was playing the older brother part perfectly. “Don't make me call you Marcus again.”


“Call me Marcus again and I'll knock ya down.” He threatened, raising a fist before grinning.  He whipped off his cap and raked a hand through his short auburn hair. “I want to show ya somethin', if you're not a chicken.  Down in the…basement.” He whispered that last word, just so nobody would overhear him.


The basement was off limits and Grace knew that, but she also refused to turn down a challenge from Mark.  That's why they were best friends.  They challenged each other and it made for some exciting times...though when they got caught was an entirely different situation.


“Umm...what exactly do ya wanna show me?” She asked softly, keeping her own voice down, chewing on her bottom lip nervously.


“Why?  Scared already?” Mark snorted, taking her by the hand and began dragging her towards the cellar doors, knowing they'd get busted if they tried going through the house. “What do ya think I want to show ya?  Glen, go away.” He said crossly when he seen his baby brother poking around again.


“I want to come too!”


Mark growled. “This ain't for babies!”


“Mark...” She sighed when Glen stuck his tongue out before going back to play in the sandbox, shaking her head. “Mean big brother.” She grumbled, rolling her eyes when he opened the cellar doors, looking down at the dark stairs and took a deep breath.  She didn't let go of his hand as she began descending, hoping they didn't get caught, her heart pounding in her small chest.


Mark's own heart was pounding in his chest, though it was with the thrill of what they were about to do.  He could feel Grace's hand gripping his tightly and squeezed gently, not looking back at her.  Putting a hand to his lips, he halted at the bottom of the stairs.  One dim light was on, casting eerie shadows about the room where it didn't reach.  He could hear the adults upstairs and smiled at her.




She smiled back at him, nodding.  Grace was incredibly close to Mark, had been ever since she met him when they were younger.  He was six and she was five. 

“So where is it?” She whispered, hearing the adults as well, not wanting them to overhear them and felt him guide her further into the basement.  Grace jumped when she heard something, smacking Mark when he began chuckling. “Not funny.” She whispered harshly, seeing even through the darkness his green eyes roll again.


He had to clamp a hand to his mouth to stifle his snorts, guiding her into a small room off the larger one.  In this room was a table and on it the adults prepared bodies of the dead for burial.  Resting on the table was a sheet covered body.  Mark caught Grace before she could back away.


“It's not like it's gonna attack ya.” He muttered.


“T-That's a...dead body!” She gasped, shaking her head and began backing away when he pulled her against him, trembling slightly.  She had to take a deep breath to calm down, knowing if she ran out of here Mark would never let her live it down. “What now?” She asked hesitantly, not liking the sparkle that suddenly came over the eyes of her best friend.


“Let's look at it.” Mark said with a grin.  He was a bit hesitant himself, but didn't let her see it, he'd never live it down if she seen he was nervous.  Inhaling deeply, he stepped forward and pulled back the cloth, jumping back at the sight of a pair of dead eyes staring at the ceiling. “Holy shit.” He cursed, swallowing hard and glanced at her. “Dare ya to touch it.”


Amber eyes widened when he said that, shaking her head frantically. “No, are you insane?!” She whispered harshly, hearing footsteps above them.  Her eyes suddenly narrowed when she seen that cocky smirk on his face and bit her bottom lip. “You first.” She challenged, crossing her arms in front of her chest. “You touch it then I will.”


Mark almost growled at her, rolling his eyes dramatically. “Maybe you should play with Glen in the sandbox.” He snorted, reaching out and placed a trembling hand on the dead man's forehead, blinking. “He's pretty cold.  Come here.” He reached out for her, green eyes amused at the expression on her face. “C'mon Grace, not like he's gonna yell at you.”


Grace reluctantly let him guide her over to the dead body, swallowing hard, and felt him behind her as she seen the eyes, shivering. “They need to close those.” She muttered. “They're freaky lookin'.” When Mark gestured her forward a little, Grace had to take another deep breath so she didn't pass out and hesitantly reached her hand out.  Mark did it, she had too, refusing to play with Glen in the sandbox.  She was a big girl; she could handle this.  She was fearless!  Her eyes opened when she touched the forehead and immediately whipped her hand back, a chill running down her back. “There I touched it and it was cold.”


“You chicken.” He began softly squawking at her, folding his arms under himself and fanning her with his elbows, smirking when she turned red. “Bawk - bawk...” Mark's eyes widened when he heard the basement door open and hurriedly pulled the cloth back over the body, grabbing her hand. “C'mon!” He hissed, dragging her towards the cellar door.


“I am not chicken!” She hissed back at him, feeling him pulling her up the stairs and through the cellar doors, watching as Mark closed them, and turned to face her. “I touched it, I'm not chicken, Marcus.” She watched as he turned red and took off, laughing when he lifted her up and spun her around in a circle, before beginning to tickle her. “Marcus stop it!!” She broke away from him again and began running again, both of them stopping when her father walked out of the house, telling her it was time to go.


Mark frowned, looking at Paul with a raised eyebrow. “Can't she stay for supper?”


“Not tonight, Gracie, let's go.” He said, gesturing for her to hurry up. “Come on, honey.”


“I don't like your old man.” Mark grumbled.


“Sometimes neither do I.  We'll see each other tomorrow though.” She smiled and hugged him around the neck, kissing his cheek and laughed when he groaned, wiping it away. “Bye Marcus.” She grinned when he growled, taking her father's hand as he lead her away from the funeral home.  Glancing back one last time at him, Grace smiled before getting in the car, Mark disappearing from sight.


Mark watched the car disappear from sight, stuffing his hands in his jean pockets, sighing and kicked a rock.  He finally turned his attention to his brother, who happened to be playing with HIS baseball. “Hey Glenie...Wanna play a game?” He asked, slowly walking over to his baby brother, beginning to grin.


Chapter 11


Bolting upright in bed, Grace's eyes popped open as the sweat caked her forehead and chest, her heart pounding a furious tattoo.  She ran a hand through her hair and looked around her empty hotel room before slowly sliding out of bed, wrapping her arms around herself.  What had made her dream that memory?  What had made her remember Mark and Glen suddenly?  Grace leaned over and turned the lamp on, bathing the room in a golden glow, and tried to steady her breathing and heart rate.  Her thoughts suddenly turned to Mark, closing her eyes as the painful tears stung her eyes.  It'd been decades since the accident.  The dream was the last time she ever saw Mark alive. 


The funeral home had caught on fire later that night while her and her father were eating dinner.  She remembered the look on his face, his pale complexion, and how he ordered her to stay in the house while he rushed over there.  It killed Grace, losing her best friend.  She loved Mark, they were her boys and nobody would ever change that.  No matter if they were dead and gone.  She would never forget them.  She remembered the funeral vaguely, in too much shock to really comprehend what was going on. 


Her father had taken the liberty of burying Mark and Glen's parents, the boys never found.  Her father told her they had turned to ash in the rubble and there was no way they could be found.  She had never cried so much in her life and actually ran away from home later that night to stare at the carnage the house brought forth.  Never again would she hold his hand or laugh with him.  Never again would she see his beautiful green eyes and auburn hair, or the smirk on his face when he got cocky.  He was gone and the memory literally forced Grace to her knees. 


When she calmed down and managed to get to her feet, Grace walked over and sat on the bed, pulling out her wallet and the picture that was folded within.  Staring back at her were warm green eyes as the tears slowly fell, pressing it to her chest and closed her eyes.  To this day, Grace missed Mark and she would never stop.




Paul sat up in his own hotel room, he hadn't even been to bed yet though he was in his pajamas, the covers turned down.  He tried to keep his mind from wandering so far back, feeling a familiar lurch of guilt before firmly shunting it to the side.  No time for that.  Not when he had to figure out a way to keep Gracie safe from...He swallowed hard.




“I'm fine Larry.” Grace said for the final time a week later, shaking her head, wearing a black tank top with blue jeans, her hair pulled up in a high ponytail. 


Undertaker hadn't bothered her since their encounter in the dressing room and she was grateful.  Though Larry kept asking her if he'd bothered her and the answer was always the same.  She rolled her eyes and turned around when the door opened, raising a slow eyebrow at the red and black masked man in front of them.  Another guy followed suit, only he had a brown leather mask in his hand, both of them bleeding.


“Let me guess...took the brawl a little too far?”


Kane nodded, his eyes straying to the woman before dropping shyly to the floor.


“I hit him upside his head with a two by four!” Mick said, sounding cheerful. “And then Kane decided to just punch me...oh my head.” He put his mask on the table, smiling toothily at Grace. “Hi.”


“Foley, over here. Kane...she'll help you and she's NICE so don't hurt her.”


Grace smiled warmly at him and guided him to the chair, seeing the cut was two inches in his hairline. “We won't have to take your mask off.” She softly said, seeing how nervous he was regarding it, and smiled when he relaxed.  She seen his mismatched blue eyes and raised a slow eyebrow.  He was staring at her, not through her, but AT her like he knew her or something.  Grace slapped on a pair of gloves and quickly got to work, being silent while Mick was talking Larry's ear off.


“Yeah, so Kaners there got upset when ALL I tried to do was rip off his mask.” Mick was saying cheerfully.


“You know better, Foley.  I hope this hurts.”




Kane heaved a sigh.


“Kane, can you lean your head back for me?” Grace asked softly, watching as he slowly did, and nodded. “Good, thank you.” She dabbed the wound, getting the excess blood off, though he would need a shower to get it out of his hair.  The man was huge, stood well over seven feet tall and was incredibly muscular.  For some reason though, Grace felt like she knew him, even though that was impossible. “The wound doesn't look too deep.  I think some stitches should hold it.” She flicked the numbing needle with her fingers before injecting it, seeing he didn't even wince and pulled it out before grabbing her sewing kit.


Kane cocked his head to the side, staring at her.  In truth he hardly felt anything she had done to him.  When she gestured him to tilt his head back again, he sighed, just lying back on the table.  His height made it difficult for people to work on his head, even when he was sitting down.


“See Kanie, if you would have done that during our match, we wouldn't even be here.  OUCHIE!  Larry!”


Grace shook her head and smiled when Kane crouched down even more so it would be easier to work on him.  Her eyes told him a silent thank you before beginning the sewing process.  He was so quiet, Grace wondered why considering his partner over with Larry wouldn't shut up.  She chuckled when Larry finally gave up with the stitches and used staples while she finished with Kane in no time flat.


“All done.  You don't have a concussion surprisingly.” She informed him, taking her gloves off, and threw them away before going to inspect Larry's work.  Being an intern, she wanted to learn as much as possible.


“He has a hard head and an ugly-” Mick stopped when he seen Kane was back on his vertical base, smiling widely. “An ugly ass, ass, not face.” He blinked twice when Kane tugged on his glove. “I'm sorry, that was mean of me and I promise I'll play nicely from now on.”


“Don't mind him Kane, he's got a concussion and you know how Mick can be.” Larry said, not wanting to see Kane's temper snap.  The Undertaker's temper was controlled rage, Kane's was not.


Grace swallowed hard seeing the rage in Kane's eyes, but he managed to keep it controlled, which she was thankful for.  He could probably snap her and Larry like a twig and watched him walk out, a thoughtful frown marring her features. “Larry, why does he wear a mask?” She asked softly, seeing both him and Mick look up at her with wide eyes. “What?  Is it a big secret that nobody should know about?”


“Well...” Larry and Mick shared bemused looks. “No, actually it's not, quite the opposite in fact.  It's so well known that it's a bit shocking that YOU don't know it.” 


“Kane was FRIED.  Seriously burnt up.  Like...KFC burnt.”


“Mick, I like you, but I'm going to make your wife a widow if you don't watch it.”


“What do you mean fried?  He was burnt?” Grace blinked and slowly looked at the door where Kane walked through moments ago, the fire incident suddenly washing over her. “How did that happen?”


“The Undertaker did it.”




“Yup, when they were kids, he burnt their parent's house down and- Grace, are you okay?”


“I-I'm fine...” Grace felt faint and had to sit down, her hands trembling a little.  “The Undertaker and Kane are brothers?”


“Sweetie, do you watch wrestling at all?”


Grace shook her head.


Larry was staring at her like she was out of her mind. “You mean you took a job with a wrestling federation and you don't know anything about it?” He asked incredulously. “Your dad works here and he- Never mind.”


“Now...is my head done?  I need to go find Kane and tell him I'm sorry for that ass comment.”


“Wait, what about my dad?” Grace looked at Larry, tilting her head to the side, her stomach twisting violently.


Not realizing this was Paul Bearer's daughter, Mick spouted out at the mouth again. “Paul Bearer brought Kane into the company.  Said he took care of him as a child and said that he was his son.  They did this DNA test thing on Raw and-”


Grace ran out of the room and to the nearest bathroom to vomit.


“Owww...why'd ya hit me, Larry?”


“You jackass...” Larry scowled, shaking his head. “Grace is Paul's DAUGHTER.”


Mick clamped both his hands over his mouth, eyes wide. “Oh shit.” He squeaked.


Grace walked out of the bathroom, still trembling, the tears stinging her amber eyes and couldn't believe what she had heard.  Kane was Paul's son?  How could that be?  Feeling anger consume her, Grace stormed down the hallway to the Ministry's locker room and didn't even bother knocking.  She was so angry that she just walked right in, throwing open the door and smacked Bradshaw in the shoulder, tears of rage in her amber eyes when she seen her father talking to the Undertaker.


“You have a lot of explaining to do, FATHER, and I suggest you do it NOW!”


Silence engulfed the room.  All eyes on her.  He arched an eyebrow, wondering just what was so damn important this wench felt the need to burst into his room.


“Gracie?” Paul asked hesitantly, glancing at ‘Taker with wide eyes.


He sighed.


“Is it true?  Tell me it's not true, dad.” Tears were already falling down her cheeks as she wiped them away hastily, completely ignoring the Undertaker, though she felt her stomach tightening.  When Paul asked her what she was talking about, her eyes locked with his. “Is Kane your son?” She watched as all the color drained from her father's face, shaking her head slowly back and forth. “No...” She whispered in disbelief, looking back at Undertaker before back at her father. “Kane...is...he's...that means...” She was hyperventilating now, her chest heaving and covered her mouth with her hand.


“That means what?  You have a brother, congratulations.  Take your drama somewhere else, woman.  Can't you see we're busy?” ‘Taker demanded coldly, having no sympathy for her obvious problems or the issues that were rising between her and her father.


“Grace...let's step outside.”


“This has everything to do with you too, Undertaker.” Grace stated heatedly, ignoring her father. “Kane is your brother, according to what I just heard, is that right?” When he simply raised an eyebrow, Grace stared back at her father, her heart pounding in her chest. “Tell me the truth.  Is Kane my...are they...” She couldn't even get the words out, feeling sick to her stomach. “Is this...this man my...brother???” She seen Undertaker's green eyes widen slightly, her eyes focused solely on her father. “IS HE???” She needed Steve right now and wanted to run to him, but had to know the truth.


Paul considered this for exactly a split second. “Yes.” He said finally, knowing this was going to destroy Grace, but at the same time protect her. “Yes...”


“WHAT?” ‘Taker roared, getting to his feet and stormed to Paul, grabbing him by the lapels of his suit. “AND WHY AM I FINDING THIS OUT NOW?” After he had...oh man, he was going to be sick.


Grace started sobbing as she dropped to her knees, wrapping her arms around herself, tears streaming down her face as she shook her head back and forth. “No... NO!!” She screamed, her heart shattering in her chest. “No it's not true!!  It's not true!!” She didn't care who saw her right now, her entire body trembling from head to toe, the shock slowly spreading throughout her body.  How could her father keep something like this from his child, his children?  What were her sisters going to think?  Grace's head was spinning, not realizing what else was going on around her. “It's not true...” She whispered painfully.


Paul was now in the air, being held by ‘Taker's two massive fists, the Ministry now slowly filing out the door. “‘Taker...” He whimpered, afraid for his life now. “Please...”


“Do you know what I could have done to her?  What I DID DO TO HER?” He was past livid and in uncharted territory. “And she is MY SISTER!”


That memory flowed through her mind when 'Taker had attacked her and Grace suddenly bolted to the bathroom that was in the dressing room, vomiting violently as she gripped the porcelain toilet bowl, shuddering to the point where every joint in her body would be feeling it come morning.  Her brother.  Her brother had sexually assaulted her.  Grace groaned before vomiting again, finally pulling back after the third time, knowing there was nothing left in her stomach.  She wiped her mouth off with some tissue and just leaned back against the stall, burying her face in her knees, crying her heart and soul out.


Paul let out a high pitched wail as he was slammed into a wall. “I didn't know what you'd do to her!” He pleaded. “I begged you to stay away from her!”


“If you hadn't LIED, I would have!” He dropped Paul with a disgusted look, raking a hand through his hair, green eyes wild.  He glanced towards the bathroom, his face pale and shook his head, storming out of the room before he became a murderer on top of everything else.


Grace finally walked out a few minutes after ‘Taker vacated, wiping the tears from her eyes, and backed away when her father reached out for her. “Don't.” She whispered, shaking her head sadly. “And no, I'm not fine father.” She walked out, closing the door behind her, and walked down the hallway toward the exit, her arms wrapped around herself.  Kane and Undertaker were her brothers...Grace suddenly took off, running as fast as she could, needing to get out of the arena, her tears flying behind her.


Grace couldn't even be 'Taker's step-sister because Paul never married their mother.  Granted, Kane was his son, but that would only make Grace and Kane related, not 'Taker and Grace.  It was an out of the blue moment though and Paul had to find some way to protect Grace from 'Taker's grasp.  Paul swallowed hard and hoped both Grace and the Undertaker didn't figure out his deception, at least not right away.  This was the only way to protect his daughter from both finding out the truth and to keep 'Taker away from her.  Of course Kane wouldn't be happy, but he could always figure a way around that.


Chapter 12


“Whoa honey.” Steve caught Grace before she could plow into him, laughing until he seen the tears in her eyes and the distress on her face, concern instantly on his. “What's happened?  What's wrong?” He asked softly, guiding her out of the middle of the hallway.


She couldn't bring herself to say it as Grace buried her face in Steve's chest, hearing him growling something about the Undertaker, and shook her head frantically. “D-Don't hurt him...” Her voice was pleading, causing Steve's eyebrow to slowly raise, more tears falling down her already scorched cheeks. “H-He's my brother...” She whispered, seeing the disgust in his blue eyes and broke away from him before running away, not able to see that right now.  She couldn't bear to see the revulsion in those beautiful blue eyes that once looked at her like she was a goddess.  She needed to get out of here, she needed to go back to the hotel and try to figure out how she was going to tell her sisters.


“Grace, wait!” Steve yelled after her, sighing when she didn't even look back and rubbed his head.  He hadn't meant for whatever expression she seen to shine through, but honestly...Her brother?  And he had...Steve needed to go throw up that last beer he had.  How sick was Paul for not telling his kids the truth before...He barely made it.


Grace shut her cell phone off and tossed it in her bag, refusing to talk to her father, Steve, anyone.  She didn't want to see anybody, too heartbroken over what she'd found out.  It was no wonder Grace felt such a strong connection with both Undertaker and Kane, they were her blood.  That just made her cries harder.  Grace curled up in a tight ball, wearing a pale blue nightgown, having taken a shower to try to wash away all of her pain only to find it didn't work.  How could her father keep something THAT vital away from her, away from their family?  Her sisters had two brothers out there they never even knew.




‘Taker had returned to his own hotel room, telling the officials to shove the match up their asses, not in the mood for anything, but a bottle tonight.  He wasted no time in opening a fifth of whiskey and took a long swallow, wiping his mouth off with the back of his hand when he finished, groaning.  His sister...he was about to...He gagged, feeling her body melting against his, his hands...He stared down at his hands before going to the bathroom, needing to wash them until they bled and maybe even past that.




The following night, Grace walked inside the arena with her usual blue jeans and a deep red tank top, black shades over her red rimmed eyes, hair down.  She barely got any sleep and wasn't in the mood for any joking tonight, not even from Larry.  Finding out Undertaker and Kane were her brothers...Grace felt the tears sting her eyes as she blinked them back, needing to focus on her job.  She walked in, sliding the shades from her eyes, and immediately snapped a pair of gloves on, not even greeting Larry like normal.  She just wasn't in the mood for anything except blood and injuries.


Larry definitely noticed the change in his assistant, but didn't say a word, figuring she had had a rough night.  Maybe from finding out Paul had another kid.  Yeah, that had to be hard on the poor girl.  Shaking his head, he returned to his work.


“Grace?” Steve asked hesitantly from behind her.


Her eyes closed when she heard his deep voice behind her, slowly turning around to face him, staring into his blue eyes and felt the tears well up in her own. “What is it, Steve?” She asked quietly, having just finished stitching up Sable, who got cracked in the head by Jacqueline, drying her hands off with a towel.


Steve had rehearsed everything he was going to say.  He had practiced in front of a mirror all morning.  He was going to tell her it wasn't her fault and he wasn't disgusted with her, he didn't hold her accountable for anything that her brother had done to her.  Hell, he was even going to tell her ‘Taker wasn't at fault either when it came to the not knowing bit.  But when he looked down at her, he couldn't say any of that.  All he could do was pull her into his arms.


Grace wrapped her arms around his neck, feeling him sigh with relief, and closed her eyes as she inhaled his scent, letting out a shaky sigh of her own. “I'm sorry.” She whispered, knowing she shouldn't have run away from him, but she was in so much shock and hurt that she had to get away.  Grace could only cry harder, shaking her head back and forth, feeling him hold her tighter against him and wasn't surprised when he lifted her princess style in his arms, telling Larry she was taking a break.  Larry didn't mind and Grace was thankful for that.


Larry didn't mind because if he had to deal with a weepy doctor for the rest of the night he would have to give himself a pain killer, not happening.


Steve carried her to his dressing room, sitting down on the couch with Grace on his lap.  He wasn't going to ask anything or say a word; she would talk to him when she was ready too.


An hour later, she slowly pulled back and stared up at him, sniffling as she took the tissue he handed her, having it handy.  Her voice was gruff and hoarse from how much crying she'd done in the last 24 hours. “I was treating Kane...” She felt tears slide down her cheeks at the memory. “And Mick Foley was going on about how my father brought Kane into the company as his son...and Undertaker is his brother…” She trailed off, wiping more tears away, sniffling harder. “So I went to confront my father about it in the Ministry's locker room and...and...found out...that Undertaker is my brother...along with Kane...” She started crying again, her entire body shuddering. “My...brother sexually assaulted me...”


This wasn't anything Steve hadn't pieced together already and he honestly didn't want to hear it again.  It wasn’t easy repressing shudders at the thought of the Undertaker raping his own sister, but somehow he managed. “I'm here for you, Grace.” He whispered, not about to tell her everything would be alright when it obviously wouldn't be.


“No...” She whispered, sliding from his lap, and felt him grab her arm, turning her around to face him. “Steve, just say goodbye.  Please.” She didn't want to do this, but she also knew how much Steve hated Undertaker and it would eventually drive a wedge between them.  Family was everything to Grace, no matter what happened, blood was thicker than water. “You don't have to be there for Undertaker's...sister.  I'll be fine.” Tears flowed down her cheeks when he grabbed her again, pressing her chest to his, staring into those blue eyes. “Steve please...” She whispered painfully.


“Fuck the Undertaker.  This ain’t about him and me, it’s about me and you, Grace.  About us.” He said softly, wiping away her tears with one finger, sighing when more fell, his blue eyes mirroring her sadness. “Don't say goodbye to me, honey.  Not over something that can be fixed.  If ya want, I'll stay away from him, no more fighting.”


“I don't want to say goodbye...” She replied tearfully, those blue eyes melting her again, and knew she couldn't fight him off.  He had been nothing short of sweet to her since she arrived in the WWF, not to mention Grace knew she was falling for him.  She felt his arm wrap around her waist, pulling her closer to him, and gripped his strong arms as their foreheads pressed together.  She was staying, not having the strength to push him out of her life. “You're right, he has nothing to do with this and I'm not giving up my happiness because of the feud.  I want to be with you Steve.” She smiled for the first time in over 24 hours and wiped more of her tears way before wrapping her arms around his neck, needing his strength and comfort at the moment.


Steve rubbed Grace's back soothingly, rocking her back and forth on his lap. “How about you take a night off?” He suggested softly, wondering if she was even in the condition to work.  Hell, he could always use another day off, why not now?


Grace wanted to do that more than anything and nodded. “Stay with me tonight.” She whispered in his ear, slowly pulling back as their eyes locked, and moaned softly as his lips caressed hers.  She slowly pulled back, trembling slightly, and smiled before running the pad of her thumb over his lips. “I have to go ask Larry first.” She murmured, feeling him release her and guided her out of his dressing room, refusing to leave her alone.  For once, Grace didn't mind, wanting Steve to be as close to her as possible, knowing he was the one who was going to get her through this without having a breakdown.


“No can do, Grace.” Larry said apologetically when she asked for the night off, trying to hold Ivory and Terri apart. “We have a PPV coming up and things always get seriously screwed- IVORY PUT DOWN THE DAMN NEEDLE!”


Sighing, Steve grabbed her hand before she could swing. “Knock it off, Lisa.  Now let Larry see what's wrong with you then get the hell out already.”


“That's fine Larry.” Grace had her game face on, promising Steve to catch up with him after the show, and proceeded to pull Terri over to sit in her chair.  She slid the needle into Terri's cheek, rolling her eyes when the woman whimpered, and began stitching the gashed wound up, putting all of her focus and energy into it while Larry worked on Ivory.


“Please, keep the stitches small.” Terri pleaded, whimpering as she watched out of the corner of her eye.  “Ivory, you bitch.”


“Next time you want hardcore, be prepared to get it.”


“How was I supposed to know you were going to use a nail file on me?  Did you clean it?  I don't want an infection from somebody's nasty toes.”


“I've already put peroxide and solution in the cut to where it prevents infection.  So even if it WAS now it's not.  Now please hold still.” She smiled when Terri complied, finishing up the job, and put a small white bandage over the wound. “Rinse out with hot water and soap every four hours, change the bandage every two if the bleeding continues.” She stated, ushering Terri out the door with Ivory following suit.  She could only hope the women didn't start fighting and cleaned up her area.


Larry started to say something, but there was a loud scream from the hallway. “What the-”


“Larry, get your team together and get out to the ring, Kane and ‘Taker have jumped script again.”




“On Paul.”


Grace heard that and immediately bolted out the door, her heart pounding against her chest, not even waiting for Larry.  Tears spilled down her cheeks, seeing her father in the ring, the blood spurting out of the cut in his head and slid beneath the bottom rope. “Daddy!” She whispered frantically, pressing her hand to the deep gash, and looked up at her...brothers.  It was hard getting past that, getting past what her father had kept from her, but he was still family damn it! “Larry, he needs a hospital!” She watched him nod solemnly, the EMT's already rushing to ringside.  There was blood everywhere and it made Grace sick to her stomach.


The Undertaker and Kane were being restrained, Kane now trying to get to ‘Taker and vice versa.


Kane had paired with his brother long enough to destroy their lying father, now it was back to business.


“We need security and a stretcher!” Larry was shouting towards the back, gesturing for help.


Grace stood up and backed away just as Undertaker got loose along with Kane both of them going after each other and she ended up getting sandwiched between them.  Grace groaned and dropped like a sack of potatoes, curling up in a tight ball as the pain wracked her body.


“Damn it, Larry, Grace is down!!” One of the EMT's shouted, wondering where was all the damn security, his eyes widening when he saw Undertaker scoop down and lift her up in his arms. “Uhh...”


Grace got a glimpse of who had her before passing out, in too much pain to stay awake.  She'd just been sandwiched, literally, by two raging three hundred plus pound bulls and she only weighed 125 pounds.


‘Taker could hear Kane's heavy breathing behind him, sighed and spun around to plant a boot in Kane's gut, never even so much as jarring Grace.  He watched as Kane toppled backwards, turning and continued his way up the ramp, ignoring the security who was now trying to stop him from taking her as well as restrain Kane.


“Shit, what do we do Larry?”


“Focus on getting her father to the hospital.  That man is her...brother.  He won't do anything, I don't think.”


“Are you insane, man?  He's the UNDERTAKER.  What makes you think he won't just cause she's his sister?”


Larry frowned worriedly and hoped Grace was alright just as Kane got up, stalking up the ramp after his brother.


‘Taker passed Grace over to Mideon. “Get her to my hotel room.” He ordered, whirling around in time to catch Kane coming for him. He smirked as Bradshaw and Farooq fell in place behind him. “I don't want to hurt you Kane.” He cautioned, he had other things to do, such as make sure Grace wasn't seeing yellow birds and shooting stars from being squashed.


Kane's eyes narrowed in on the woman in Mideon's arms, snarling, and brought his hand up with the voice box. “Let her go.” He had heard from ‘Taker about Grace being their sister and didn't know just how sick his brother could be.


Mideon was already around the corner and gone with Grace, heading out of the arena, and slid inside the car before driving her to the hotel as instructed by his master.


“Why?  Afraid for little Gracie?” ‘Taker taunted, smirking as Kane tensed.  Of course Kane was scared, ‘Taker had tried his best to kill him over and over, why not her?  Or worse.  He snorted, mentally rolling his eyes. “She'll be in GOOD hands, brother.  Handle him, Acolytes.” He let them step forward as he headed out to follow Mideon.  Honestly, was he THAT bad?


Chapter 13


A low groan escaped Grace's lips a few hours later, the pain all rushing to her at once, and slowly fluttered her eyes open, wondering where she was.  Her head was killing her along with her arms and upper torso region.  She tried sitting up and hissed out, immediately regretting that move before lying back down, feeling an ice pack on her forehead.  She slowly removed it, wondering who she was with, and suddenly saw a pair of acid green eyes flash through her mind.


‘Oh no.’ She thought, the panic consuming her, and closed her eyes as a tear fell down her cheek, her stomach tightening even though it hurt to do so.


“Don't sit up.” ‘Taker instructed, pulling the sheet higher on her.  He had removed her shirt in order to examine her ribs, somehow not surprised to find her torso bruised. “You're very lucky that nothing is seriously wrong with you besides some bruising and a mild concussion.” He removed the ice pack and sighed, not moving from his place by her on the bed.


This wasn't happening.  She was with the Undertaker, her brother, and she didn't have a shirt on.  Grace began to tremble slightly, hissing when her torso warned her with a stab of pain not to do that.  Grace took deep breaths, trying to calm down, and finally opened her eyes to stare up at him, swallowing hard.


“What happened?” She whispered out, feeling him replace the ice pack on her head, knowing it was probably bruised too. “The last thing I remember was my dad...our dad...” She suddenly looked away from him and bit her bottom lip, tears falling down her cheeks.


“Paul is currently in the hospital with a concussion and multiple lacerations to his head, as far as I know he is also still unconscious.” ‘Taker said with no remorse at all in his voice or on his face. “And you got in the way of Kane and myself, inadvertently, but...” That was that, she was officially up to date. “And if it eases your mind, I didn't touch you in any way other than to bandage your midsection.”


Grace swallowed hard and nodded, slowly moving to sit up again, very slowly and managed to do so. “Can I have my shirt please?” She asked quietly, feeling the material in her hand, and slipped it on, realizing she still had her bra on.  Good.  That was a good sign. “What am I doing here?” She finally asked, pressing the ice pack to her stomach underneath the shirt, letting out another hiss.


“I thought that would have been obvious. I brought you here.” He said sounding annoyed with her apparent slowness.  ‘Taker stood up, walking over to the mini bar to pour himself a drink, studying her. “You look nothing like me.” He said flatly.


“And you look nothing like me.” She replied softly, staring at him with curious amber eyes. “You actually remind me of someone.” She quietly admitted, chewing her bottom lip, and raked a hand through her hair as she sighed sadly. “But that's impossible considering he's dead.” It was the eyes and she knew it.  She'd had that dream and couldn't stop thinking about the eyes and how similar they were. “Thank you for...treating me, I think...” This was awkward as hell, considering what this man had done to her, and shivered involuntarily with dread at the thought.


“Who do I remind you of?” He asked, his voice deceptively soft.  Deceptive simply because she had never heard him speak this humanly and no doubt she'd think it some sick sort of game he was playing with her.  He shot down his drink, refilling the tumbler and went to pull his own shirt off then stopped, knowing that would only cement in her mind he was playing aforementioned game.


“My best friend.” She softly said, wincing a little as she leaned back against the headboard, closing her eyes. “I haven't thought about him in years until I came to work here.  I know why.  It's your eyes.” Her voice remained softly, slowly opening them and leaned forward a little, trying to stretch her ribs out even though they were killing her. “He had green eyes like yours.  His name was Mark.  He um...he died when he was eleven years old.  Died with his family in an accident.” She didn't know why she was telling him this, but now that Grace knew this was her brother, she had a feeling he wouldn't hurt her or attack her.


His eyes narrowed somewhat, contemplating that before deciding to keep whatever he was thinking to himself, shrugging. “Sorry he died.” He said finally, walking around to drop down into a chair, dangling one long leg over the arm and stared broodingly at her. “Paul never told you before tonight then?”


“No.” She whispered, her eyes lowering to the bedding below, and wrapped her arms around herself, clearing her throat. “Believe me, if I knew you were my brother, do you really think I would've kept something like that hidden?” She scoffed, slowly standing up, and had to sit back down as she held her side.  She'd been crushed, literally, by over 600 pounds.  She had a right to be in a lot of pain. “I had no idea about you or Kane.” Grace felt her eyes swell with tears again and started crying. “I had no idea...” She buried her face in her hands, both crying from the pain of what happened and the pain of her father's deceit.


He had seen people cry before and it always amused him to no end, normally. “Would you like something for the pain?” He asked, not wanting to see her cry, feeling uncomfortable and looked away as if her tears were indecent, getting up to move to the window, looking out.


“No.” She whispered and laid back down on the bed, clutching a pillow to her chest as the tears soaked it, her entire body shuddering.  She wanted Steve, craved to have his arms around her, missing him more than words could say.  Everything was crashing around her as Grace wiped her tears away frantically, trying to stop crying. “You have two other sisters by the way.” She didn't flinch when his head snapped to face her, his green eyes glowing. “I'm the youngest out of the three.”


“I could care less.” ‘Taker said flatly, not about to be drawn into whatever happy family, druggie hippie commune they came from.  Paul had more kids than a dog had fleas, honestly.  The man must be a cult leader or something.  Yeah, that was it.  He snorted. “Do they all look like you?”


“No, they have my-our dad's eyes...and black hair from our mother.” She swallowed hard, slowly standing up from the bed, needing a drink desperately and poured herself a glass of whatever he was having. “My hair is dyed.  It was originally sandy blonde, but with my eyes, it didn't work too well.  I was too pale so I switched.” Her father had sandy blonde hair while her mother had black with amber orbs.  She slowly turned around to face him, knowing they had to make some kind of reconciliation. “Undertaker, whatever has happened between us, I'm not mad at you about it anymore.  You're my brother.  I know you probably don't care what I think, but...” She sighed and downed the shot of bourbon, groaning as it burned down her throat and set the glass down. “I just wanted to let you know...”


He snorted, turning to look at her with an arched eyebrow. “You're right, I don't care.” He said flatly, wondering just how in the hell she was up walking about considering it looked like she had been steam rolled. “And given what I did too you, the fact that you're standing there extending an olive branch is a bit weird.”


“You're my brother and you didn't know we were blood related.” She simply replied, wincing slightly as she walked over and sat back on the bed, not taking her eyes from him.  Family was everything to her and knowing she had two big brothers out there, no matter how different they were, warmed her heart a little. “The past is the past.  It can't be changed.  But we're family whether you like it or not and blood is always thicker than water.” She seen him raise a slow black eyebrow and stared into those green eyes again, eyebrows furrowing together. “Can I ask you something about Kane?”


This woman was on drugs.  What had he been thinking?  He groaned, envisioning it now.  Holiday cards, family pictures sent to him whether he wanted them or not.  Being publically acknowledged by this little freak of nature.  He felt a headache coming on.  She was so much more likeable as an object.


“You can, whether I answer or not is another story.” He said slowly, green eyes narrowing.


This was going to sound completely out of place, but Grace couldn't shake this feeling inside of her. “How old was Kane when he was burned?” She asked softly, remembering Mick telling her Undertaker had set the fire, which was when she bolted out of Larry's office.  This was so confusing; Mark was dead so why was she trying to piece a puzzle together when there was no reason too? ‘Mark is dead.’ She thought and pulled out the wallet from her jean pocket, pulling out the picture and unfolded it, shaking her head before tucking it away again.


“I don't know, seven or eight.” He said emotionlessly, turning his head to look out the window. “Why?  Would you like a family history?  I'm afraid I couldn't give you a very detailed one, I know very little about him.  He spent most of his life in an institution from my understanding and I don't know anything about him before the fire either.  So ask your father.”


“Seven or eight...” She whispered painfully, closing her eyes. “Glen...” She didn't notice the Undertaker's eyes stare at her as she stood up from the bed, feeling sick to her stomach, and needed another shot.  Something to numb the pain.  It was over thirty years ago and she still missed them to this day.  Something was wrong, something wasn't right.  Glen and Mark were dead.  DEAD!  She downed the shot and poured another, downing that one before sinking down on the floor, raking her hand through her hair. “What if my dad is lying, Undertaker?” She suddenly asked aloud, looking up at him. “How do we know we're related without proof?  Is Undertaker even your real name?  Kane's?” There were so many questions that had to be answered.


Definitely drugs, had to be.  Grace was insane. “Of course Undertaker isn't my real name!  Are you daft, woman?” He demanded crossly, dropping back into his chair with a grunt, looking at his empty glass as if staring at it would make it refill itself. “And Paul has been known to on occasion, one of the many traits of his I rather admire.  Get to your point.”


She stood up from the floor, not knowing why she was doing this, and walked over to stare into his eyes, seeing something familiar in them, but she couldn't pinpoint it.  Glen had been seven when he died in a fire...Her father had told her Mark had died with them, all of them, both boys and their parents, and they hadn't found the bodies.  Grace felt breathless and didn't break eye contact, pulling her wallet out and the picture before unfolding it.


“Do you recognize this?” She slid it into his hand, taking his glass from him, and sat on the bed that was right across from his body. “Do you recognize those two boys in the picture?”


Audibly sighing, letting Grace know he was nearing the point of annoyance, 'Taker stared down at the picture, both eyebrows rising for a moment. “It looks like me.” He said finally, handing the picture back to her. “I don't know who the other boy is though.  Where did you get that and how?”


“That's Mark.” She softly said, pointing to the boy with the green eyes and auburn hair. “This is his brother Glen.  Mark was my best friend when I was ten years old.  Glen was seven.  They died in a funeral home with their parents in a fire...” She swallowed hard, beginning to tremble slowly. “M-My father said that the boy’s bodies were never found in the fire and he buried their parents.  He took me out of town right after it happened.” She looked back into his green eyes. “What's your real name?” Grace asked, pain and confusion in her amber eyes.


“It's Mark.” He said stonily, standing up when her mouth dropped. “Don't start asking me a million and one questions either because I have no memory of my childhood.” ‘Taker stared at her, watching her heart in her eyes and it looked like it was breaking all over again. “I don't know a Glen either.”


“Well...do you know what Kane's real name is?” When he shook his head, Grace sighed as she lowered her head, biting her bottom lip.  This was too coincidental.  What if this was Mark?  What if her father had lied to her about them dying in the fire?  What if... “Oh my god...” She whispered, dropping the picture to the floor.  It was all coming together now, there was no two ways about it unless these two men went through the same thing Mark and Glen had. “The bodies were never found and Kane wears a mask.  To hide burns.  Marcus...” She watched as he froze dead in his tracks and jumped back when a low growl escaped his lips, her eyes widened as he held his head in his hands. It looked like he was in some serious pain. “Undertaker?”


It felt like a thousand sharp knives were trying to cut a hole in his skull, pressure building against a dam, a dozen other things he couldn’t describe at the moment, hissing and leaned against the wall.  He held out a hand when she took a hesitant step forward. “Keep back!” He shouted.

“W-What's wrong?” She jumped again when he let out a roar, blinking, and didn't know what to do.  Did she stay back or did she try to ease his pain?  She was a doctor after all. “Mark, I'm walking very slowly.  Listen to my voice.” She was ignoring her own pain, swallowing hard. “I'm moving very slow.” She didn't listen when he warned her away again and grabbed his head in her hands, using a technique she learned in medical school. “Don't concentrate on the pain, concentrate on me, hold onto my voice.” She ordered and began massaging his head, her eyes never leaving his, seeing how much pain he was in.  From what she had no idea.  Too many drinks?  She didn't know.


Didn't she listen?  And then to call him Mark on top of everything.  ‘Taker pushed her away, hearing her shriek of pain and knew he had gotten her bruised torso, wincing as her cries of pain intensified his own.  Then just as suddenly as it started, the pain stopped and he straightened, staring down at her, breathing heavily.  All he could do was focus on breathing and just look at her.


Grace was holding onto her torso for dear life as the fire raged through it, biting her bottom lip as he simply stared at her.  Through the pain, Grace couldn't look away from his green eyes, swallowing hard, and slowly moved to sit on the bed.  They were emeralds...they were familiar, very familiar.  That's how Mark's eyes always reminded her of.


“I-I was just trying to help...” She whispered out painfully and took the ice pack, which was halfway melted by now, pressing it under her shirt again, hissing out.  He was still staring at her, not even blinking.


“Next time I tell you to stay away, stay away.” ‘Taker said gravely, walking over to open the nightstand drawer, tossing her a bottle of Vicodin. “I had Mideon procure those for you, take one.” He ordered, raking both hands through his hair, hoping he wouldn't be feeling that pain ever, ever again.  It was worse than how he had felt after Hell in a Cell with Foley and that had HURT. “And my name is ‘Taker, not Mark.”


Grace could only nod, refusing to take the Vicodin, and laid down on the bed. “I'm sorry.” She whispered softly, pulling the comforter over her, knowing she couldn't go anywhere.  Not tonight.  She was in too much pain both physically and emotionally.  Her mental stability was shot.  She actually thought he was Mark.  It couldn't be him...it just couldn't.  Grace decided she was going to talk to Kane, no matter what, needing to find out the answers only he could answer for her.


“Take the pain killers.” ‘Taker grunted, the bed dipping as he sat on the edge, taking the bottle and opening it, tilting a pill in his hand. “It'll lessen the pain and make it easier to sleep.” He said firmly, looking prepared to force them down her throat if necessary, which he was. “Grace, you don't have to be tough and pretend it doesn't hurt.” His tone changed, it was gentle now.


“I-I'm fine.” She whispered, tears sliding down her cheeks, the pain excruciating.  Grace looked up into his eyes, seeing the worry swirling in those acid pools and sighed before taking the pill and glass of water he handed her, downing it. “Thank you.” She whispered, lying back down on the bed, snuggling against the pillow.  In no time flat the Vicodin had kicked in and she was fast asleep, her blood red hair splayed all over the pillow, her face full of dried tears though otherwise she looked like an angel.


He stared down at her, a frown creasing his brow, green eyes troubled.  Almost hesitantly, he took a strand of her blood red hair between his fingers, rubbing the silky locks for a moment before letting go.  If Grace was his sister, then he was a fucking goat.  There was no way in hell she could be, absolutely none.  He hoped, else wise he would wind up having to go check himself into a clinic to get rid of the sick thoughts in his head.


Chapter 14


Grace wasn't surprised when Larry demanded she take a few days off to recuperate from the sandwich between her brothers.  That was fine.  She had bigger fish to fry anyway.  She was limping slightly, but other than that, she was fine.  Tonight she was wearing a black and red corset top with a pair of black jeans, her hair down with thin black eyeliner around her eyes and black boots on her feet.  The corset hugged her body nicely, but didn't give off the impression she was a whore.  It was a beautiful top and Grace felt like wearing it as she looked all over the arena, finally spotting Mick Foley.


“I have a quick question for you, Mr. Foley.” She said with a smile, moving slower than normal.


Mick stared at her for a moment, his brown eyes darting to the corset top then to the ceiling, sighing. “I have a wife and she's a model and she has hot legs and I love her very much.” He said to the sky, then looked back at her with a grin. “Yes, Gracie?  What can I do to help you?”


Grace giggled, shaking her head, not believing how crazy he was though he was also very friendly. “Do you know where Kane is?” When his eyes widened slightly, she smiled wider. “I really need to speak with him, being my brother and all.” She nodded when Mick told her he was in the basement and was kind enough to point her in the direction. “Thank you Mr. Foley.” She winked at him, seeing him looking up at the ceiling again to talk to it, and giggled before heading in that direction.


Kane was in the boiler room to be more specific, busy staring at his scarred hand and wondering where his new sister was.  He was curious about her and then to see the Undertaker cart her off.  He growled angrily, cracking his neck.  He heard someone call his name and stood up, pulling on the glove and waited, ready to destroy someone.


His sister that he'd been curious about stepped into the lighting, stopping when she seen what his stance was and swallowed hard. “Hi Kane.” She smiled softly, seeing him lower his arm, and knew he wasn't threatened anymore as she stayed where she was. “Do you mind if I talk to you for a minute?” Grace had no idea why she was doing this, but she had to know.  She had to know if her father had lied to her about everything all these years. “Do you mind if I sit down?”


Kane cocked his head to the side, studying her thoughtfully before stepping away, revealing a crate, the only thing that was useable as a seat in the entire room, crossing over to lean against a wall.  His body posture told her he wouldn't attack her and to make herself at home.  He could talk without his voice box, but it was hard.


She smiled warmly back at him and walked over, sitting down on the crate, seeing how gentle he was.  Completely opposite from his brother. “I wanted to show you something.” She softly said, pulling the picture from her pocket that Undertaker had left on the nightstand the previous night, slowly handing it to him.  She watched as his gloved hand slowly took it before taking a deep breath, seeing him unfold it to reveal the picture of her and the boys.  Her boys. “Do you recognize that picture?” Grace asked after a moment, not able to read his eyes since he had a mask on from the burns...from a fire.  Grace had to focus as she mentally shook herself, her eyes full of hope.


Kane stared down at the picture, raising a slow hand to feel his masked face.  His fingers convulsed for a moment as if he would destroy it, but didn't, holding it out to her. “Where did you get this?” He whispered after clearing his throat, his voice coming out harsh and raspy.


Tears welled in her eyes as Grace looked up at him, shaking slightly, not liking the sound of his voice though that was probably due to the fire.  There was hidden emotion, but anything else she could detect. “I'm the little girl in that photo with the sandy blonde hair.” She quietly said, swallowing hard, a tear falling down her cheek as she slowly reached her hand out. “Glen...”


He stared at her hand like it was a snake and it was going to bite him, his odd eyes -courtesy of the fire as well- widening for a moment. “Gracie...” He breathed, reaching out to take her hand in his good one, the one without the glove and squeezed gently.  He had so many questions right now, but couldn't voice them.  Paul had lied, again, how not surprising.  He stood up suddenly, growling and tugged on the cuff of his glove.  They were not siblings and Paul had lied his last.


“Glen...” Tears streamed down her face as she wrapped her arms around his neck tightly, beginning to sob her heart out and felt her knees give out on her.  They weren't siblings, these were her boys. “H-He told me you died...you and Mark...” Her head snapped up. “That's Mark isn't it?  Undertaker is Marcus.” When he nodded solemnly, Grace covered her face with her hands, trembling from head to toe, not believing what her father had done.  He had spun his web of lies and she still wound up knowing the truth. “All this time...I thought you both were dead...”


“No, not dead.” He whispered harshly, dropping to his knees beside her and patting her back awkwardly.  He had memories of Grace, she was the little girl who had always been kind to him even when his brother hadn't been. “Not dead.” He repeated, gently gripping her chin and tilted her head up so he could look down into her eyes, smiling slightly under his mask as he stared into those familiar amber eyes.


She saw it now.  The blue in his eye that wasn't messed up and brought a shaky hand up to rub his face through the mask, sniffling with a smile on her face. “Glenie.” She giggled softly when he groaned, though it was raspy, wiping her tears away from her eyes. “I knew it was you.  I knew it.  I knew there was a reason why I had a dream of you and Mark after years of solitude.” She frowned suddenly, her eyebrows furrowing together. “Glen, Mark doesn't remember.  He doesn't remember or recognize me.  Do you know why?”


Glen snapped out of his daze to stare sharply down at her. “Mark is dead.” He said, coughing to clear his throat again, wishing he could speak more than a few words at a time without sounding like he was a victim of smoking too much.  The irony sometimes made him want to kill himself. “He has no memory.” He hoped she could figure it out because his throat was beginning to hurt from actually being used.


Her heart broke when she heard that, slowly standing up and raked a hand through her hair, not believing this uplifting, heart wrenching revelation.  Mark and Glen were alive.  Glen remembered, though he'd been badly burned in the fire, while Mark had no recollection of his childhood. “Why doesn't he remember?” She whispered quietly, feeling him stand up behind her, turning to stare into his eyes. “Glen, how could he forget his best friend?” She started crying, sinking down on the crate. “How could he forget me?  We were so close, I loved him like...like I don't know!  I loved you both so much, I still do!”


Glen sighed, wondering if she was really going to make him do this and sat down on the crate, gesturing for her to come to him.  He almost smiled when she did, pulling her down onto his knee.  It was amazing how much taller he was then her, smirking at the memory of her towering over him at one time. “He got hit on the head by a falling beam.  Almost died.” He explained.  This much he knew because he had tried pulling his brother out of the house before catching flame himself.


Grace swallowed hard when she heard that and leaned her head against his shoulder, taking a deep breath. “I know it hurts for you to talk, Glen.” She felt his arms wrap around her and smiled, snuggling further.  She trusted him fully and remembered him at seven years old, wanting to play with her and Mark, tears flowing down her cheeks. “I'm sorry for what happened to both of you.  I'm sorry for all of my father's lies.  I'm sorry for everything.  God I'm just so glad you're alive.” She sniffled, not able to stop smiling at that.  They weren't dead, they weren't ashes scattered to the wind.  Glen was here with her and so was Mark, though he didn't remember her.


Glen was silent for a long time, thinking about everything that had happened.  He knew about 'Taker assaulting her, everyone did because gossip and rumors FLEW in this company, especially gossip as juicy as that.  He frowned, looking at Grace.  She was a very attractive woman; no wonder the Undertaker was interested in her.


“Let him think you are siblings.” He said finally.


“What?” She whispered, staring up at him with wide amber eyes, and sighed when she finally cottoned onto what he was saying. “Glen, how can I - how can I deceive him?  I've only dreamed of this moment happening...not exactly like this, but having you both back in my life.” She sniffled when he pressed his forehead to the side of her head, her eyes closing, and turned her head as the tears flowed rapidly down her cheeks. 


Mark had assaulted her, she couldn't deny that, but damn it he didn't know who she was!  Would it matter if all his memories came back?  What if he never got them back and he never knew who she truly was?  The thought tore her apart as Grace cried on Glen.


“If you don't want him to finish what he started you will lie.” Glen said seriously, glad he wasn't using his voice box suddenly.  It was loud and if anyone was listening in, they would definitely hear what he was saying. “Mark is not as you remember.  He would not care even if he knew who you really were.  It might provoke him further.”


Grace knew he was right, no matter how much she wanted to deny it, and finally nodded. “Alright, I will not tell him.” She softly whispered. “I guess it's better that I know he's alive and not telling him then not knowing at all.” She smiled when Glen nodded, slowly standing up from his knee, and took the picture that he handed back to her. “I will make you a copy.” She assured him and kissed the top of his head, just like she had done when they were kids. “I missed you Glenie.” She grinned when he rolled his eyes, seeing him stand up to his full height, and actually blinked. “Wow, it looks like I don't tower over you anymore.” She teased gently, not believing how big both boys -men- were now.  It baffled her, though Mark was tall for an 11-year-old boy to begin with.  Glen was now taller than him and that was hard to believe.


“No.” Glen chuckled, staring down at her and then picked her up under her arms to raise her eye level with him, looking down at the gap between the floor and her feet, snorting. “Shorty.” He grunted, gently setting her down.  His head snapped up when he heard someone coming, pushing her behind him, his entire body tensing.  He growled when Mideon slunk into view.


“The Undertaker wants to see his sissy.” He said with a sneer.


“It's alright.” She whispered, pressing a hand to his tensed arm. “It's alright brother.” She winked at him and stood on her tiptoes, hugging him tightly around the neck, and kissed his masked cheek, hearing him growling at Mideon while hugging her back. “I'll see you soon.” She promised, tucking the picture securely in her pocket before reluctantly walking away, wiping stray tears away from her eyes.  Glen and Mark were alive.  Her boys.  She smiled at Mideon as they walked up from the boiler room and into the hallway, trying to dry her tears up without messing up her eyeliner, finally arriving outside the Ministry's locker room.


“After you.” Mideon growled, shoving her forward when she hesitated.


“No need to push me.” She grunted, hissing since her torso was still incredibly sore.


“Push her again, Mideon, and I'll break your fingers one by one starting with the tips and then the knuckles.” ‘Taker threatened in a lazy drawl, gesturing to the chair beside his. “Come here, Grace, let's talk.”


“She was with Kane, in the basement.” Mideon said quickly, eager to get back in his master's good graces.


He held up a hand to silence his minion, staring at Grace. “Have a good conversation?”


“Yes, actually, we did.” She couldn't stop smiling to save her life and walked over, sitting next to him, crossing one leg over the other, not able to stop staring at him. 


Black hair.  He used to have auburn locks, but those eyes -though they were acid- were still the same.  His face was leaner and he had a strong chin.  She couldn't believe how much he changed, the tattoos definitely surprising her.  Then again, Mark had always been a rebel.  She couldn't believe he was here, in the flesh, in her sights and she couldn't stop the tears from filling her eyes.  It was almost as if a gigantic weight had been lifted off of her shoulders, not caring what he did to her.  This was Mark, her Mark, her best friend that she mourned over for years, decades, and he was here.  He was in front of her and it made her heart soar to the heavens.


Chapter 15


One black eyebrow arched slowly, a slow smirk crossing his face as he chuckled darkly. “Given that we are siblings, Grace, I don't think it's appropriate for you to look at me that way.” He said suggestively, snorting when his Ministry began laughing under their breaths. “Any word on Paul?”


“Still hospitalized, he'll be out in a week.” Farooq spoke up instantly, cracking his knuckles ominously. “Want us to make it even longer?”


“I'll consider it.”


‘You're his sister, remember that.  You HAVE to lie!’ Her mind screamed at her as Grace was in a trance, finally blinking and cleared her throat, running a hand through her hair. “Sorry.  What did you want to talk about, Undertaker?” She asked softly, not really interested in hearing about her father. 


That lying sack of trash, she was going to maim him when he finally did come back on the road.  Anger flashed in her amber eyes at the thought of him lying to her all these years, telling her Glen and Mark had been dead all this time.  When they were here, they were alive and well, for the most part.  Grace felt the tears slide down her cheeks as the emotions crashed over her, causing her to bury her face in her hands, her shoulders shaking and sniffled.  She couldn't help it, this was intense, the pain and heartache slowly diminishing, though it lingered because he had no idea who she was.


“Aww the wittle baby is crying.” Viscera hissed from his corner, busy pulling on his wrestling boots.


“Viscera, you just lost Mideon as a tag team partner, enjoy your handicap match and pray you win or suffer my displeasure.”


That made everyone shut the hell up, just in case.


Grace slowly looked up at Mark, refusing to think of him as anything else except that name, blinking.  Did he just...defend her?  She blinked and wiped her tears away, the chill no longer in the room.  She remembered when they were in school and Mark used to beat up any guy who would touch her, giggling softly at the memory.  He would walk her to the school bus and they would ride home together, talking about anything out of the ordinary.  They weren't regular kids, Mark and Grace were the top students in their classes, being ten and eleven years old.  She was in another trance as that memory swept her away, closing her eyes, and slowly opened them when she felt a hand on her back, turning to stare up at him.


“Sorry.” She apologized again, sighing heavily. “What's up bro?” She decided to try that, see if she got her answer.


“What the hell?” ‘Taker blurted out, green eyes narrowing when Bradshaw covered his laugh by turning it into a cough. “Do not address me as 'bro', do I look like a 'bro' to you, woman?” He demanded, regretting ever standing up for her.  Look what happened, she was already taking liberties! “I want you to travel with my Ministry.”


“What?” Grace wasn't comfortable anymore and stood up, her eyes widened, shaking her head. “I'm sorry I can't do that...” She trailed off, about to call him Mark, but caught herself. “Undertaker.  I called you 'bro' because I don't talk in that prim and proper way that you're used to.” She never remembered Mark talking like that, remembering his southern accent and missed that deeply.  His drawl. “You do know I'm dating Steve Austin right?” When the Ministry hissed, she got her answer. “The answer is no.  Thank you, but no brother.” She had a right damn it and if he tried forcing her, she would hurt him again like last time, her eyes narrowing slightly.


‘Taker didn't miss that narrowing of the eyes and stood up, a smirk on his face. “Calm down.” He said, reaching out suddenly and pinching a cord in her neck, catching her before she slumped, her eyes darting to him.  Her mind was alert; her body however had just been temporarily paralyzed. “That's your only warning, SISTER, I can incapacitate you as well as you can me.  So don't even think about it.”


Grace closed her eyes as she leaned against him, not able to do much for the moment.  She felt him lift her up in his arms and set her in the chair, trying to get her blood pumping again.  She was definitely lying to him now, there was no way he could find out she was Gracie, EVER. “I told you no, I'm not traveling with your Ministry.” She stated in an even voice, refusing to show weakness even though she couldn't move.  Her entire body from the neck up had been temporarily paralyzed.  Hell if he wanted too, he could take her and she wouldn't be able to fight him off.  It would last a good ten-fifteen minutes since he only pinched her cord.


“Why not?  Don't you want to spend some time with your big brother?” He asked innocently, smirking when Mideon snorted, patting his 'dog' on the head. “Play nicely, Mideon.  Why don't you go see if you can't find Grace a pillow?  I'm sure she's most uncomfortable.” He chuckled darkly, studying her before turning serious. “That was just a demonstration Grace.  If you try that ever again with me, I'll break your legs.”


“You deserved it after what you pulled.” She shot back heatedly, her side throbbing with pain, but she couldn't move for the moment, glaring daggers back at her 'brother'.  Glen had been right.  Mark, the Mark she knew, was gone and that just broke her heart as she closed her eyes. “And, big brother or not, I don't want to spend any more time with you than necessary.” She was lifted up and placed on the pillow, mumbling a thank you before leaning her head against the back of the chair, “Though I might start traveling with...” She had to trail off again and got her wits about her. “Kane.” She finished with a smile. “But then again Steve wouldn't like that too much since I'm already traveling with him.” That was the truth, Steve had started sharing a hotel room with her. “And I know how much you loathe each other so no Undertaker, that's my final decision.”


“Fine.  Someone get her out of here.”


Bradshaw and Farooq stepped forward, each taking one end of Grace's paralyzed body and carted her out the door, carrying her to Larry.  Without answering any of his frantic questions, they laid her on a table and walked back out.


“Grace?  Grace, you okay?” Larry demanded, staring down at her anxiously.


“Yeah, he temporarily paralyzed me.” She stated through gritted teeth, finally feeling her arms slowly come back to life, seeing the fear in his eyes. “Relax.  He said it was a warning.” She rolled her eyes, slowly reaching her hand up and had him pull her up into a sitting position. “He wanted me to travel with him.  I told him no.  He didn't like that so he had his morons drop me off here.” She seen Glen FLY into the room and immediately held her hand up, beginning to gain feeling in her legs. “I'm fine Glen.” She ignored Larry's shocked expression. “He didn't do anything...much.”


Recovering from his shock at Grace addressing Kane by his Christian name, Larry turned to the other man. “He paralyzed her.” He said bluntly, wincing when Kane's volatile exploded, shielding Grace's still not fully functioning body when a table went flying. “KANE!”


Breathing heavily, Kane shot one look at her before storming out of the room.


“Larry, you have to stop him!  He's going to destroy Mark!” She gasped, covering her mouth and shook her head frantically back at him. “I didn't say that.  You did NOT hear me say that, do you understand me, Larry?” When he nodded mutely and looked like he had questions circling his head, Grace finally felt the strength return to her body and flew out the door after Glen.  She caught him before he arrived at the Ministry locker room. “No, you can't do this!” She had her hands pressed against his chest. “Glen please...” She pleaded quietly, her eyes mirroring what she was saying. “Please, just let it go.”


“No.” Glen growled, staring down at her, breathing heavily. “He has to stop.”


“Stop what?  Hello, Grace, good to see you back on your feet.” ‘Taker said, opening the door with a smirk.  He caught Kane's fist before it could reach him, twisting his brother's arm behind his back and shoved him across the hallway face first into a wall. “Play nice or else.” He hissed, keeping an eye on Grace just in case she decided to play hero.


“G-Kane, please!” She couldn't believe this and cupped his face with her hands, shaking her head slowly back and forth. “Please.  For me.  Don't do this.” She turned around to face Mark, still standing in front of Glen, wondering where her Mark was.  He was nowhere to be found and it was shattering her slowly. “Brother, please stop it.” She felt Glen's hands on her shoulders and nodded, leaning back against him. “He's not worth it...” She had to trail off again, biting back the name Glen. “Kane.” This was going to be harder than she thought as she grabbed his hand. “Come on, he's done the damage, there's no fixing it and violence won't solve ANYTHING.”


“No, but it'll make me feel better.” ‘Taker snarled, not believing she was interfering like this. “Grace, move.” He ordered angrily, ready to show his baby brother the meaning of pain.


“Get over it.” Kane growled, smirking when ‘Taker actually froze in shock. “Come on Grace.”


“This is just like-” She felt Glen nudge her and nodded, grabbing his hand and stared back at Mark, refusing to move out the way. “If you want him, then you have to go through me and this time I'll see your attack coming, BROTHER.” She spat angrily, feeling Glen pull her back, amber eyes spitting fire back at him.  She wanted to tell him everything, just to see the look on his face, but refrained because she knew Glen was right.  Mark would pull what he did previously if he knew they weren't really siblings.  She had to play the part.


“If we weren't related I would gladly go through you.”


Glen was appalled, how sick was his brother?  Apparently twisted beyond belief.  He growled again, stepping in front of Grace.  If she thought 'Taker would be easy to take down again she was mistaken.  He knew all too well how fast ‘Taker could move when he wanted too.  Grace would wind up with broken fingers if she tried that again.


“Stop it both of you!” Grace shouted, pulling Glen away from Mark, shaking her head.  He was still the instigator, that hadn't changed about him one damn bit. “Still the same.” She muttered, feeling how tense Glen was. “Please Kane, don't do this.  I know he's your brother, but don't fall for it.  He'll have his Ministry out here in a heartbeat pummeling you because he's a coward who doesn't know how to fight his own battles.” She seen the fire flash in Mark's eyes and didn't care, it was the truth. “That's why he has all of those men following him, to do his bidding because he can't do it himself.  Come on, it's not worth stooping to his level.”


Kane caught the Undertaker before the other man reached Grace, surprised at how fast he had lunged, genuinely scared when he seen the deadly rage in those green eyes. “Run, Grace!” He ordered, digging his boots into the floor, pushing 'Taker back.  He managed to shove the slightly smaller man back, crouching down to catch him again if he charged.


‘Taker didn't get the chance because Steve had appeared on the scene, jumping on 'Taker's back before he could attack again, applying a sleeper hold.  Holding on for dear life as he was repeatedly slammed into the wall, not letting go.


“STEVE!!” Grace cried out, wincing every time his back and head collided with the wall, knowing he was going to have a hell of a concussion. 


She blinked when Glen shoved her down the hallway and took off running, worried to death for Steve.  She decided to go to his dressing room and locked the door behind her, flipping the lock on it.  Her chest was heaving from how hard and fast her heart was pounding, tears sliding down her cheeks, and frantically wiped them away.  She knew she crossed a line with what she said, but it was the truth!  Grace didn't sugarcoat anything, not when she was being provoked.


With Kane now helping, ‘Taker eventually caved to the sleeper hold, stumbling to his knees, then finally passing out.  Steve let go with a groan, letting Kane help him to his feet. “Where'd she- Never mind, I already know.” Holding the back of his head, he walked towards his dressing room, aware Kane was following. He almost jumped when Kane supported him. “Thanks.” He mumbled, feeling like he was going to pass out.


Chapter 16


Grace's head snapped up when she heard banging on the dressing room door, slowly standing up, and immediately opened it upon hearing Glen's raspy voice. “Steve...” She whispered heartbrokenly, wrapping his arm around her shoulders and set him down on the couch, Glen closing the door behind him and locking it for good measure. “Steve.” She repeated, seeing how glazed his eyes were, and kissed his lips softly before pressing her forehead to his. “You have a concussion.” He just grunted, causing her to smile tearfully, and moved his head forward to examine the back, sighing with relief when she seen he wasn't bleeding.


“Tell me somethin' I don't know, Doc.” He drawled teasingly, wincing when she touched his head, reaching back to feel the bump. “Damn...that son of a bitch didn't want to go down.”


Glen wanted to reprimand Grace for provoking 'Taker, but had a feeling it wouldn't make a difference, knowing that she'd do it all over again without a second thought.


“Mark is out of control, Glen.” She stated, blinking and immediately felt Steve's blue eyes on her, her gaze lowering to her jeans, knowing she would have to come clean. 


Grace took a deep breath and pulled the picture out of her pocket, placing it in his hands, and proceeded to go into the full explanation, being quiet.  About how her father had lied to her about them being dead.  She explained how she knew them since childhood and how for the past two decades she'd been mourning over them.


“They are my boys.” She whispered, feeling Glen's hand on her shoulder and closed her eyes painfully shut. “Mark lost his memory in the fire...” She went into that explanation that Glen told her, feeling him squeeze her shoulder, letting her know it was alright.  Grace cried the entire time, the betrayal and pain hitting her all over again. “I knew they weren't dead when I started having dreams of our childhood together.  And the facts were too coincidental.  But Mark thinks I'm his sister and we're keeping it that way because he doesn't know who I am.  He doesn't know I'm Gracie.  He thinks I'm just a woman named Grace.”


Steve had to take a minute to absorb all the information just laid on him.  His first thought was 'thank god, she's not his sister because that was really, really FUCKED up’.  His second thought was 'dear Christ, this is screwed’. “I agree with Red, he doesn't need to know who ya really are, Grace.  If he does, chances are, he's gonna go right back to what he was pullin' before.” He said finally.


Glen nodded, arms folded over his chest.


“I know; I agree with you both.” Grace wasn't going back on that, smiling up at Glen in reassurance. “It's so hard not calling him Mark or Marcus though.  God he hated that.  He would chase me around every time I called him by his full name.” She giggled at the memory, her dream coming back to her. “I know he's not Mark anymore, the southern boy who used to stick up for me in school when someone would mess with me.  But I still love him, no matter what he's done.” She slowly stood up, raking a hand through her hair. “He won't find out who I really am because he won't remember.  His memories are gone and unless those come back...”


“Not likely.  Grace, the man has been watching you since ya got here honey, if seeing you ain't jogged them memories, then I don't know what will.  Want us to go hit him on the back of his head for ya?” Steve offered with a grin. “That might work.”

Glen nodded again.


Grace actually laughed softly and shook her head, slowly sitting back down. “No, but something happened when I stayed with him last night.” She couldn't believe all of this was in the span of 24 hours and took a deep breath. “I called him Marcus after showing him the picture.  He didn't have a clue, but as soon as I said that name, he was in A LOT of pain.  He was holding his head and roaring, like he was dying or something.” She frowned thoughtfully, shaking her head and couldn't sit down as she stood up again. “If he remembers, then he's going to know it's me.  He'll know only one Grace in his life and that's going to be me.  So we have to either roll the dice and hope for the best or distract him from trying to rekindle them.  Because I know that's probably what he's trying to do considering I told him about the picture and pointed out I was the little girl in the photo.”


“Maybe he'll be nice again if he knows who you are, as nice as he could be anyway.” Glen said hopefully.


“Since when do you talk?” Steve asked incredulously, staring at Kane like he had grown another head.


Glen just shrugged.  With each sentence, he was getting more confident, he credited that to his old friend though. “Since someone found what I had to say worth hearing.” He said softly, looking at Grace.


She beamed up at him and stood up from the couch, wrapping her arms tightly around Glen's neck, sniffling as the emotions overtook her again. “God I can't believe you're really here, Glenie.” She giggled when he squeezed her harder, burying her face in his neck and closed her eyes before slowly pulling back. “I'm always going to be here for you.  I have a lot of time to make up.” She tapped his nose, like she used to do, and smiled before turning to face Steve. “So what are you two saying?  You WANT him to get his memories back of me?”


“I don't know, it's something to think about.  Please, stop calling me Glenie.”


“I kinda like it.  Can I call ya Kanie?”


He growled, raising his hand and clenched his fingers together as if wrapping them around an invisible throat.


“Kanie is right, Grace, you need to think this through.”


“I do want him to remember, more than anything.” She quietly said, staring up at Glen before going back at Steve, tears in her amber eyes. “Steve, he's my best friend.  I've been mourning over him for nearly twenty years because I thought he was dead.  I thought I would never see him again.  I thought he was gone and now he's here.  It's not his fault that he doesn't remember his childhood.” She sighed when Glen cleared his throat. “Okay so maybe it is to an extent, but still.  I can't forget about him; I can't pretend I'm his sister.  Sooner or later it's going to come out that I'm NOT and then what?  Maybe Glen is right, maybe jogging his memories might be the trick...”


“Okay, maybe you're right.  But even if it does, you got to remember Grace, he's lived as the 'Undertaker' for a long time now.  Just because y’all were childhood buds, doesn't mean he's going to forget everythin' and let ya alone.” Steve said quietly.  He hated bursting her bubble like this, but she had to look at things realistically. “Chances are, he'd play on it to somehow screw with you.”


“That's a chance I'm willing to take.  I just want him to remember, nobody should have to go through their life without their childhood memories, no matter how evil and manipulative they are.” She sighed heavily, knowing it was a long shot, but she wanted Mark to remember.  She wanted to hear that drawl again and see those emerald gems instead of the acid she was used too.  The cold dead eyes he carried, that's not who Mark was.  He was a fighter and didn't use goons to do his bidding. “If this all doesn't go well then I have nobody to blame, but myself.  I can't sit back though and pretend to be something I'm not.  I have to try.”


Glen and Steve exchanged looks, both men obviously not having expected her to say anything different and sighed at the same time, both of them scowling.  Though Glen's was hidden under his mask.


“Okay, so how are ya gonna do this?”


“I don't have the slightest clue.” Grace had no idea where to start considering the picture hadn't jogged anything. “Calling him Marcus must've struck something in his mind.  Maybe if I keep calling him that...” She knew she'd probably be dead before the third time she shouted it, but it was worth a shot. “Glen, do you have any suggestions?” She looked up at him with hope in her eyes, her eyebrows drawn together before looking back at Steve.  They're relationship was probably over and that was fine with her.  She would rather have him as a friend than nothing at all and took his hand, squeezing it gently.


“Hmmm...How about that time he took you down into the basement?”


Steve squeezed her hand back with a gentle smile, knowing this was something she had to do and would stand by her side throughout it all, prepared to catch her if ‘Taker sent her crashing. “What basement?”




“That's what I dreamed about...” Grace frowned, wondering how Glen knew that, and suddenly smiled. “God that was so freaky.  Their parents were funeral directors and Mark dared me to touch a dead body.” She shivered, shaking her head. “I will NEVER forget that.  He called me a chicken and kept making you run away to your parents.  He was so mean.” She sighed. “I guess nothing really has changed, he still is a damn instigator.” She looked at Glen. “How exactly do you want me to go about talking to Mark about that memory?”


Now THAT was a problem.  To talk to ‘Taker would mean she'd have to get close to him.  That in turn meant he was very likely to try and kill her.


“I don't know.” He muttered hanging his head, his hair falling over his face as his shoulders slumped in defeat.


Steve rubbed his bump, apparently wondering that as well. “As much as I hate to say this, you're going to have to appeal to his uh...well...He's attracted to ya, Grace.” He said bluntly. “And that's your weapon against him.”


She blinked and stared at Steve like he'd just lost his mind. “You actually want me too...” She shook her head, refusing to do that. “No, I will TALK to him, but there will be no hanky-panky going on.” She smacked Glen when he began chuckling at her, amber eyes narrowed. “He did ask me to travel with the Ministry earlier...” She said thoughtfully, seeing both men turn to face her. “Of course I turned it down, then he paralyzed me when he thought I was going to attack him.” She actually snorted. “Even I'm not THAT stupid to attack him with his goons around.”


“Whoa, whoa, whoa I'm not sayin' throw him on the bed and fuck him.” Steve hastened to say, looking sickened at the very thought and began turning green. “I meant it's the way ya keep him from killin' you right off the bat so you can talk to him.”


“Like seduce him without the actual sex part?”


“Yeah, that.”


“I can't believe BOTH of you are suggesting I...” Grace couldn't say the word and swallowed hard. “I don't even know how to go about doing something like that.  I'm not a knockout or anything.” When both Glen AND Steve scoffed at her, Grace groaned and buried her head in her hands. “I have no experience in the seduction department, he'll see right through me.” She sighed heavily, closing her eyes, wondering if this truly was the only way to get close enough to Mark to try to jog his memories. “What if it backfires?” She asked quietly.


“You think I'd leave you alone with him?” Glen demanded, sounding offended. “I'd be right outside the door.”


“No shit, I would be too.” Steve snorted. “Honey, the minute things start to get hairy-”


Glen groaned, shaking his head.


“All you'd need to do is holler and we'd come rushin' in to save yer little ass.”


Grace liked the sound of that, feeling a little more confident and chewed on her thumbnail, needing to take a few deep breaths. “Alright, I'll do it.” She had no choice.  Paul had told his last lie and she refused to be played like a pawn in a chess game for the rest of her life. “I'll do it.” She repeated as if to reassure herself, looking up at Glen, feeling Steve's hand squeeze hers, and smiled at both of them. “Thank you both for helping me with this.”


“Afterwards, let's pretend this conversation never, ever happened.” Steve pleaded, pulling her against him for a hug, burying his face in her neck and inhaled. “Because I think it's gonna give me nightmares.”


Glen chuckled softly, having never ever thought that Stone Cold Steve Austin would be helping in something like this, especially not encouraging the woman he obviously cared about to seduce his brother into gaining his memories back.


“I promise; it'll never be mentioned again.” Grace giggled, running her hand over his bald head, and kissed the top of it before standing up. “I'm gonna head back to the hotel.  Knowing him and what happened, he's going to follow me.  If not, then I'll think of something else.” She knew they would be following close behind and kissed both of their cheeks before unlocking the door and ran out.  She ran until she was outside of the arena, pulling her rental keys out, having taken separate vehicles since Steve had a meeting that morning with the writers, and headed to her car.


“He's probably already following her.” Glen said after ten minutes, knowing ‘Taker wasn't one to forgive and forget.  Ever.


“Yeah, I know, let's go Glenie.”


“SHE can get away with calling me that, YOU cannot.”


Chapter 17


Grace arrived at the hotel ten minutes later and rushed inside, trying to slow her racing heartbeat.  She couldn't believe she was actually doing this.  Were Steve and Glen out of their minds?  What if this didn't work?  Even though Mark still thought she was his sister, their earlier conversation couldn't be ignored and she knew this.  Groaning inwardly, Grace walked to her hotel room and slid the keycard in before closing the door behind her, looking up to find nobody there.  A huge sigh of relief escaped her as she threw her keys and keycard on the table along with her wallet, running a hand through her hair, and sat down on the bed.  So much had happened, Grace's head was spinning as she put it in her hands, closing her eyes.




Steve and Glen had rented out two rooms, and paid a hell of a lot to get them too.  One directly across from Grace's -where she was now and by herself it seemed- and one across from 'Taker's. “Think he'll go to her?”


“If not maybe she'll go to him?”


“Not fuckin' likely.”




Pulling out the picture from her pocket, Grace felt the tears swell in her eyes and ran her fingertips over Mark's face, sniffling.  He was alive.  He wasn't gone and even though he didn't remember her, Grace couldn't stop the happiness from flooding her body.  She missed him, Glen too.  She had her boys in her life again and that's all she ever wanted.  Placing the picture on the nightstand, Grace stood up and walked inside the bathroom to get some toilet paper since there was no tissue in the room at the moment, wiping her eyes.


He came in through the balcony, it was all too easy to slide open the patio door as the maid had left it unlocked when airing out the room.  He heard Grace in the bathroom and rolled his eyes, smirking as he leaned against the wall, waiting for her to come out.  After that stunt she had pulled earlier, shooting off at the mouth, he owed her.


A few minutes later, Grace emerged from the bathroom, the makeup off of her face and stopped dead in her tracks at the sight of Mark. ‘Oh shit!’ She thought, rolling on the bed when he went to grab her. “Now Undertaker, wait a minute...” She was holding her hands up in surrender, swallowing hard.  So much for the seduction part, there was pure green fire in his eyes and silently cursed when her back hit the wall, knowing she was trapped like a rat. “Look you can hurt me if you want, but...” She had not the foggiest idea what to do, what to say, and locked eyes with him. “Marcus, please don't do this...”


His fist came flying, punching a hole through the wall mere inches from her head.  A cruel smirk graced his lips when she let out a shriek. “We need to talk, sis.” He said calmly, danger in his eyes though at the mention of 'Marcus.'


“Alright...” She whispered, trembling slightly, her chest rising and falling rapidly. “I'm not sorry for what I said though.  You're better than this, Mark.” She flinched when he let out a growl, refusing to back down though. “I know who you really are.  I know this monster isn't you, Marcus.  I can't believe you're here, you and Glen.  Don't you remember it?  Don't you remember us?  You were my best friend and I thought you were dead...” Tears filled her eyes at the memory of that night with her father, how he had told her the boys had died in the fire along with their parents. “Marcus please...”


“Marcus please...” He mimicked her voice nastily. “Who the HELL do you think you are?  You know NOTHING about me, Grace.  If you DID, you would’ve ran in the other direction the minute you seen me.” His eyes trailed down her body. “So, I'm taking it this means we're not related?  How pleasant.” He grabbed her arms, pinning them over her head. “Are we or aren't we?  And for your sake, don't lie.”


“No, we're not.” There was no point in lying now, but she wasn't going to give into him. “I know who you are and I can't fathom how much pain you've been in all these years.” Tears trickled down her cheeks as Grace closed her eyes, that memory from the dream sweeping her away. “God I remember the last time we saw each other.” She started laughing quietly. “You challenged me to go down to your parent's basement where they kept the dead bodies and dared me to touch one.” She shook her head. “I will never forget that.  And you absolutely LOATHED when I called you Marcus, always threatening to spit on me.  And I always had to defend Glen against you because you instigated him constantly, which that hasn't changed.” She opened her eyes and stared into his green pools. “Marcus it's me.  It's Gracie.  You have to remember me; you don't forget your best friend!”


“Call me Marcus again and I will choke the life right out of you.” ‘Taker threatened angrily, not looking moved in the slightest by her pleas.  He could feel that pressure building up in his head again and growled, backing away from her.  It was all too easy to see the connection between her and the migraine from hell.


It was working, she could see the pain in his eyes and kept going with the memories. “You used to beat up anyone who touched me in school.  You were known as the school bully, but I always thought of you as my protector.  You used to walk me to the school bus after school and we would ride home together talking about baseball.  That was your favorite sport and we would play together.” She sat on the bed, staring at him, hope shining in her amber eyes. “My father lied to me.  He told me you and Glen died in that fire.  He told me you were dead!  He told me my boys were DEAD and lied to me about being your sister, about us being siblings!  He did this, Mark.  He's betrayed us all.  I'm so glad you're alive though, I'm so glad you're standing in front of me and not scattered ashes in the wind.  Mark please, try to remember me.  Try to remember how it used to be...”


‘Taker knew exactly how to cure this pain, this unbearable pressure in his head.  Kill her.




Steve and Glen were standing in the hallway, listening.  They were both mildly curious what she had done to make him listen to her though the next second they exchanged confused looks when they heard ‘Taker bellow in pain. “Should we?”


“She knows to call for help if she needs it.”




Grace didn't move to touch him this time as she backed up on the bed until her back hit the headboard, seeing him clutching his head tightly, knowing the memories were trying to break through.  All the time, all the pain, everything they had gone through lead up to this moment and she wasn't backing down. “Mark, it's Gracie.” She wanted to reach out and touch him, to take away that pain, but knew he had to go through this in order to remember her.  She snatched the picture from the nightstand and walked over, against her better judgment, holding it up to him. “This is you, Mark.  You, me and Glen.  This is who you are, man or not.  Whatever Paul told you...” Grace couldn't believe she'd called her father by his name. “It's all lies.  He lied to all of us.  Remember me damn it!!”


He was on his knees, the agony ripping through him, letting out an actual scream as the dam burst, memories flooding him.




“So...if he does get his memories back...do you think he'll be different?”

“No.  Mark was a cruel child.” Glen said bluntly. “Grace is biased of her opinion because she cares for him.”


“So he's always been outta his mind, not good.”




Tears streamed down her cheeks as Grace dropped to her knees beside him, pressing her forehead against the side of his head, holding onto him for dear life.  She'd never, in all her life, heard Mark scream that loudly and felt her heart break, knowing she had caused him this pain.  It was for a good purpose though, she hoped.  She felt the silent tears fall down her pale cheeks and closed her eyes tightly shut, not releasing the picture and not releasing her long lost best friend.


At the scream, Glen had broken down the door, him and Steve both halting in their tracks to stare down at the sight before them.  The Undertaker was hunched over on his knees, forehead pressed against the carpet while Grace held him.  Glen was fairly certain he could see tears on his brother's face, cocking his head to the side.


“Is he okay?”


“Ssshhh…” She soothed, rubbing his back up and down, trying to get him to calm down.  She didn't even care if Steve and Glen were in the room, all her focus was on Mark.  Grace kissed his forehead, letting him know everything was going to be alright, and ran her fingers through his hair, comforting him the only way she knew how.  She was crying so hard, still not able to believe Mark was here in front of her.  Her father was going to pay for all of the pain he caused all three of them and sniffled, not worried how she looked at the moment. “Mark...” She whispered softly, almost sounding relieved.


The only person who was surprised when he suddenly pushed her away from him was Grace.  ‘Taker stumbled to his face, blinking the tears out of his eyes, staring down at her like she was some sort of alien, something foreign to him. “Stay away from me.” He growled, shoving past Steve and Glen.




A grunt was the only answer he got.


Glen flinched when he heard a soft 'see ya soon, Glenie'.


Her heart shattered in her chest and Grace held her hand up when Steve went to console her. “Please leave.” She whispered, wanting to be alone, and slowly got to her feet, wiping her tears away. “Please.” She was begging them both, knowing as soon as they left she was going to have a breakdown.  She didn't want to do it in front of them and was holding it in. 


As soon as the door closed, Grace collapsed on the bed and curled up in a tight ball, her tears soaking the pillow, her entire body shuddering from head to toe.  He hadn't assaulted her, he told her to stay away from him, and she would.  It didn't hurt any less though and Grace wondered if resurfacing his memories had been the right thing to do.  Yes, they were.  She couldn't deny him for her own selfish reasons.  Mark deserved to know the truth, regardless of how he treated her from here on out.  When Grace could no longer move, she passed out, the tears still falling even afterwards.




Mark watched out of narrowed eyes as Grace ran, her glove outstretched to catch the baseball he had thrown. “C'mon you squirt, jump!” He yelled, hooting when she did.


“Marcus, stop throwing them so high!”


Taker gripped his head, growling as he lay in his bed.  His head still hurt a little, a million memories lined up for him to sort through.  What had she done to him?




Nobody saw Grace for three days after that night, refusing to come out of her hotel rooms.  Larry had told her to take them off, knowing the woman had been through quite the emotional ordeal as of late.  Vince understood and he wasn't going to punish her for having personal issues.  He was a lot nicer than people portrayed him to be.  Though now it was time to go back to work.  Grace had her cry, her heart break was over with. 


Her eyes looked up at the arena and took a deep breath before walking inside.  She was wearing a deep blue V shaped neckline dress shirt with a denim skirt, white Skechers on her feet.  She left her hair down, though had a ponytail holder and headed inside, walking down the hallway, knowing Glen and Steve were probably worried sick about her. 


Grace had decided she wasn't going to bother Mark anymore, knowing he hated her for forcing him to remember the past.  Remembering them.  It hurt her, but she would get over it.  At least she still had one of her boys in Glen and she was going to be there for him.


Paul was back early and regretting every minute of it.  He had been drilled mercilessly by the Undertaker about the past, gathering somehow Grace had managed to unlock his memories, not a good thing.  So on top of worrying if he was going to die or not, he also had to worry about his precious little girl, no doubt she now hated him.


As far as Grace was concerned, she had no father.  He had lied to her repeatedly, took Mark and Glen away from her, twisted and manipulated her thinking and feelings.  She hated him, truly, and never thought that was possible.  It was no wonder Mark was so fucked up.  Paul had probably filled his head with lie after lie for years and transformed him into the monster he was now.  She shook her head and walked inside the trainer's room, seeing Larry was cleaning up, apparently just finishing sewing someone up.


Chapter 18


“I'm back.” She announced with a smile, grunting when he pulled her in for a tight hug. “Larry, can't breathe...”


“Sorry honey, just good to see you.” Larry said with a chuckle, setting her down and backed away, a grin on his face. “Missed you around here, Grace.  You ready to get back to work or just wanting to take it easy for the night?” He hadn't seen hide nor hair of the Undertaker lately so he was assuming the big man had decided to keep his distance from anything even remotely suggestive of Grace.


“No, I want to get back to work.  I promise, I'm ready to get started, Larry.” She sounded confident and wanted to lose herself in her job.  She hadn't gone to medical school for eight plus years to see that all wash down the drain.  Grace pulled her hair up in a messy bun before washing her hands and slapped on some gloves, sanitizing her area and sighed when Andrew came stumbling in along with Albert. “You know, if you two keep going at this rate, you're going to have brain damage.”


“We didn't do it this time.” Albert groaned, sighing as Larry pointed to Grace and stumbled over to her. “D' Lo and Henry decided to clobber us with chairs.”


“And it really hurt.”


“Maybe I shouldn't have offered to pierce them?”


“Prince Alberts from Albert aren't in high demand.” Andrew sighed.


She shook her head and dabbed his wound with solution, though she was happy to be back in the full swing of things. “You really need to stop antagonizing people, Al.” She grinned when he groaned, knowing he'd never live that nickname down.


“Oh my god are you two alright?!” Trish Stratus came flying in, a black leather skirt with a black tight top, holding her silver shimmering cowboy hat that matched her boots, tears in her brown eyes.


“We're fine, Trish.” Andrew said, his eyes softening at the look on her face.


Albert rolled his eyes, smirking at Grace. “You're about to see and hear the most sickening display ever.  They're dating.” He stated, rolling his eyes again when he heard Trish cooing. “I'm fine too!”


Andrew cleared his throat.


“God, I was so worried.” Trish sighed as she walked over to stand between them, smiling at Grace. “We haven't officially met.  I'm Trish Stratus.” She extended her hand, a soft smile on her face.


“Nice meeting you, I'm Grace.” She replied with a smile of her own. “I would shake your hand, but I'm a little busy at the moment.” She laughed softly when Trish pulled her hand back, stitching Albert up. “You got lucky this time, Al.  No concussion.”


“Al?” Trish giggled.


“Shut up Trish or I'll hold you down and pierce your nipples.”




“Sorry.” Larry coughed, clearing his throat, his cheeks flaming red as he hastily looked over at Trish and Grace who were both trying not to smile.


“Larry is blushing; I wish I had a camera!” Grace giggled, shaking her head, both women having to lean against each other when he grumbled something regarding Trish's T&A assets. “Okay enough, I have to focus.” She ordered, working on Albert again, finally finishing and slapped a band aid on his forehead literally.


Trish giggled more as she walked over and kissed Andrew's lips softly, watching him relax and winked. “Behave for Larry or no sex tonight.” She stated sweetly, causing Larry to cough again and ran a hand through her blonde hair. “So Grace, you look like the woman who parties.  Do you feel like going clubbing tonight?”


Raising a slow eyebrow, Grace had to let that process in her mind before responding. “Umm...clubbing?” She'd been a bookworm all of her life.


“Yeah!  Drinking and dancing.  I'm going with a few of the Divas and you look like you need a night out.”


Wasn't that the truth! “Let me think about it and let you know.”


Andrew groaned as Trish walked out, letting Larry finish up before chasing after her with his partner.


He watched as Trish led away her team, rolling his eyes mentally.  Those two fools reminded him of puppies trailing after their mistress no doubt that was how Trish somehow viewed them, especially with their tongues lolling out all the time.  He was leaning in a doorway of an empty room, waiting for Grace.


“I can't believe they were the only two we had tonight.” Grace stated as she finished helping Larry clean up, seeing he was still grumbling, and walked over to kiss his cheek. “Knock it off with that.” She ordered playfully, looking around and nodded. “Need anything else before I leave?” When he shook his head and told her to be careful, Grace nodded with a smile. “I will, night Larry.” She walked out and headed down the hallway, going over Trish's offer in her mind.  Clubbing.  Sounded like fun, but it wasn't Grace's style.  Hell, she didn't even know what style she had nowadays.


His boots made no sound as he followed her, the arena virtually empty.  Some wrestlers straggled behind, the crew, but the building was winding down, people were going to their 'homes' for the night.  And most people who seen him these days usually pretended they hadn't, not wanting to wind up with his barely concealed rage directed at them.  He halted when she stopped, stepping back into another dark room when she turned around, hearing Grace cluck her tongue as if chiding herself.


“You're paranoid.” She muttered, shaking her head, though she glanced around again before turning and kept walking. 


Glen and Steve hadn't come to see her that night, which she didn't mind.  She would see them eventually; she was sure of it.  Thoughts turned to Mark, her arms wrapping around herself, and forced her mind to push him back in the dark recesses.  He wanted nothing to do with her.  When Grace heard a sound behind her, she whipped around again, frowning and sighed before pulling the holder out of her hair.  The cold air assaulted her as she headed to her rental car, feeling something in the pit of her stomach, and suddenly broke out into a run out of nowhere.


Long legs quickly caught up to her, no longer masking the sound of his footsteps hitting the pavement, hearing Grace beginning to panic.  Smirking, he caught her at her car, whipping her around to face him.  ‘Taker's eyes met hers briefly before bending down to capture her lips in his, backing her into the car, holding her arms at her sides, not about to risk being paralyzed again, ever.


Panic consumed her, remembering what Mark had done before, and trembled slightly against him.  She wanted to kiss him back, to feel him against her, but he also terrified her at the same time.  Grace finally managed to break free and shoved him away, tears in her eyes, her lips slightly swollen.


“What the HELL has gotten into you, Mark?” She demanded angrily, her back pressed against her car, her heart thundering against her chest. “God leave me alone...”


“Why?  Is that what you want little Gracie?” He taunted, stepping away from her, jamming his hands into the pockets of his black jeans, green eyes brooding as he stared at her.  The wind picked up a bit, whipping his hair around his face. “No, you don't.  If you wanted me to leave you alone, you wouldn't have purposely made me remember everything, now would you?” He fell silent, just staring at her.


“Don't you DARE call me that, Marcus!” She shouted, remembering the one and only time he had taunted her with that name and it was when they first met in school.  She'd put him in his place and their friendship was born. “I don't want you to leave me alone, you're right, but I also don't want you forcing yourself on me.” She had to look away from him, tears in her eyes, and blinked them away.  It hurt him taunting her like that and took a deep breath. “You told me to stay away from you and I have.  What do you want Mark?” Grace turned around to face him, seeing his green eyes, wanting to reach out and hug him and tell him how much she missed him.  She couldn't though and she knew it.  He would think she was coming onto him or something. “The reason why I wanted you to remember is because you deserve to know your childhood.  That and I don't like lying.  I refused to pretend we were family.  It wasn't right, nothing about this is right, except you're alive.”


A barrage of emotions crossed his face and none of them were positive, his eyes darkening with every second that passed only this wasn't from desire or lust. “Did it ever occur to you, you interfering little bitch, that I was happy with my life the way it was?” He demanded, not caring if he hurt her. “I had the right to know?  I wish to God you had left me alone!  I don't WANT to remember ANY of it!” He was shaking with rage now. “But that wasn't up to me, was it?  Mmm no, little Gracie had to make the decision for me.”


“You wouldn't leave me alone or I would have!” She shouted back at him. “You forced yourself on me and wouldn't leave me alone until you found out I was your sister.  Only that was a lie.  You can't leave ME alone, Mark, so stop turning this around on me!  It's not my fault what happened!  If you would've left me alone and went on with your own life, I would've never found out it was you!” She was shaking as well from her own rage, her fists clenched at her sides, angry tears in her eyes. “I'm going back to my hotel room now.  I want you to leave me alone Mark, I mean it.  You're right, I DON'T know you.  I never did.” She turned around and dug her key out to unlock her rental.


The minute her back was turned, he was on her again, pressing her head against the car, holding her hands in his, feeling the key digging into his palm and didn't care. “Too late, Gracie.” He hissed in her ear, his breath hot against her skin, his body pressed against hers. “You are stuck with me, dearest.  Your pain alleviates mine so you'll suffer right along with me.”


“No!” She broke away and backhanded him across the face, groaning as she held her hand, knowing it was probably sprained.  The key had been in her hand so it sliced his cheek, causing her eyes to widen with pure fear, trembling from head to toe. “It's not my fault!  It's not my fault your parents died or what happened to you, Mark!  It's not!  You need to find someone else to blame or take your anger out on Paul!  He's the one who did this!  He's the one who lied about everything!  Go to him and LEAVE ME ALONE YOU PSYCHO!”


“Paul...” He murmured, raising his fingertips to feel his face, staring down at his own blood. Green eyes met amber, rubbing his bloody fingertips together, apparently unfazed. “Did you ever stop and consider he had a reason for lying, Grace?” He whispered, anguish filling his eyes. “That just maybe, he was trying to protect people?” He took a step away from her, giving her space so she didn't think he was going to attack. “No...you just wanted your best friend back and guess what?  He's dead.  Marcus is dead.”


“You're right.” She whispered painfully, biting her bottom lip. “I don't know you.  I don't know this man standing before me.  But it is my father's fault for who you are.  He's twisted and manipulated your mind for years, Mark, whether you believe it or not.” She wiped her tears away, chest heaving as she fought back the sobs that threatened to consume her. “I'm sorry.  I'm sorry for...making you remember.  I thought if you did, you might leave me alone simply because of how we used to be.  And it backfired, like I thought it would.  My father lied to me and I'll never forgive him.  I'll never forgive him for all those nights I stayed up mourning over your ass, crying and wishing you were back in my life.  Imagine my surprise when after nearly twenty years, I finally DO find out that you really are alive, only you're completely different.  A monster.  Leave me alone and go back to your life.  I want no part of it.”


“That is the wisest thing you have ever said.” ‘Taker said softly, watching as she now fumbled with her key again, still not making any movements towards her.  He raised his bloody fingers to his mouth, sucking them clean while he watched her.  Of course, whether she had a choice or not was entirely up to him and he would have to think it over.  Part of him wanted her to run and never look back, the other wanted to make her suffer for making him remember.


“Damn it.” Grace whispered, stopping with the fumbling, and looked back at him with glistening amber eyes.  She didn't know what came over her, but didn't care at the moment.  She ran into his arms and wrapped her arms around his neck, hugging him tightly against her, knowing this would be the one and only time she could say this. “Goodbye Mark.” She whispered before letting him go and got in her car, starting it up, and peeled out of there as the tears flowed down her cheeks the entire time.  She hadn't said goodbye last time because of her father.  This time, nothing stopped her from doing so.


‘Taker stood there and watched her until she had pulled out of the parking lot and out of his sight.  He could still smell her, feel her arms around his neck and heaved a soft sigh.


“‘Taker?” Paul asked hesitantly, stepping out from the shadows where he had been watching. “What now?”


“Who knows?”


Chapter 19


Six months passed since Grace found out that Mark and Glen were alive.  She hadn't spoken a word to her father, refusing to do so, but had been spending a lot of time with Glen and Steve.  Her blue eyed savior.  She smiled, wearing an Austin 3:16 t-shirt with blue jeans, her hair pulled up as she sewed Mideon's forehead silently.  The Brood, Edge and Christian, had turned their backs on the Ministry of Darkness and clocked both Mideon and Viscera in the head with chairs, busting them open.