My computer decided to start giving me problems I couldn’t deal with. So off to Apple’s depot it went! And onto a loaner from my husband’s employer for me. But now I have access to Grey again, and my soul can once again get beaten up. Oh, the things I go through for you people. 🙂
If this book, if we can call if that, didn’t divide the numberless chapters by dates, this one would be part of the previous chapter. No, wait, Stephenie Meyer had a habit of strange chapter cuts, very much like Saturday afternoon movies where they cut to a commercial at some very random moment.
The previous email was at 11:57pm, and this next one is a mere six minutes later. It spans midnight. So time for a cut!
And the email, from Grey to his victim, is painfully juvenile.
Why don’t you like me?
Ana writes back two minutes later.
Question for y’all. Who here uses email as their main method of back-and-forth communication? Text messages kiiiiiiinda exist, and are a lot easier now than back in the days when “Why don’t you like me” was literally:
If you don’t understand that, then you’re very young. 🙂 Back in MY day, we had to hit numbers. None of these fancy keyboards! And our phones had maybe one game on it, but that snake game was AWESOME. Because it was a game. Oh a phone. And Nokia was amazing for the changeable covers. And that ringtone that everyone of my generation knows all too well.
May you cringe in peace.
So Ana writes back and tells him it’s because he never stays with her. He reflects for a moment on how big of a day it was for her, and for once, just this one, realizes he screwed up, and runs back out the door to go to her.
Since the roads are clear, he makes it to her place in 23 minutes. Do you what apartment complex is 23 minutes from there? According to the maps on my phone, MY complex is exactly that far from the Heathman.
“I knock quietly, and Kavanagh opens the door.
“What the fuck do you think you’re doing here?” she shouts, her eyes blazing with anger.
Whoa. Not the reception I was expecting.
“I’ve come to see Ana.”
“Well, you can’t!” Kavanagh stands with arms folded and legs braced in the doorway, like a gargoyle.
I try reasoning with her. “But I need to see her. She sent me an e-mail.” Get out of my way!
“What the fuck have you done to her now?”
“That’s what I need to find out.” I grit my teeth.
“Ever since she met you she cries all the time.”
“What?” I can’t deal with her shit anymore, and I barge past her.
“You can’t come in here!” Kavanagh follows me, shrieking like a harpy, as I storm through the apartment to Ana’s bedroom.
She’s entirely justified to shriek at the bastard who just shoved her aside (she was blocking the door, and the only way to barge in would involve physically moving her), and committing the criminal act of trespassing.
He storms into Ana’s room, where her lights are out, and rudely turns on the overhead light.
“Do you want me to throw this asshole out?” Kate barks from the doorway.
Fuck you, Kavanagh. Raising an eyebrow, I pretend to ignore her.
No, fuck YOU for thinking you have ANY right to have forced your way into someone else’s home and behaving like this.
Ana is shocked, and when Kate asks if she wants her to toss Grey out, Ana does the only think she can do. She shakes her head “no.” She knows what happens if she doesn’t give Grey her way, and since she was awake already, as evidenced by her crying, she would have heave the commotion.
Scared, she asks why he’s there.
“Part of my role is to look after your needs. You said you wanted me to stay, so here I am.” Nice save, Grey. “And yet I find you like this.” You weren’t like this when I left. “I’m sure I’m responsible, but I have no idea why. Is it because I hit you?”
She struggles to sit up and flinches when she does.
“Did you take some Advil?” As instructed?
She shakes her head.
When will you do as you’re told?
I go to find Kavanagh, who’s on the sofa, seething.
“Ana has a headache. Do you have any Advil?”
She raises her eyebrows, surprised, I think, by my concern for her friend.
Concern? CONCERN?! No. If he was concerned, he wouldn’t be treating Ana like this!! Kate’s probably surprised he didn’t tell her to get a belt or something. And that “You said you wanted me to stay, so here I am” is not a “nice save.” It’s a guilt trip.
“Anastasia, you can’t tell me what you think I want to hear. That’s not very honest. How can I trust anything you’ve said to me?” This will never work if she’s not honest with me.
The thought is depressing.
Talk to me, Ana.
He doesn’t want honestly! If he did, he wouldn’t ignore her when she says the opposite of that he want her to have said!
“How did you feel while I was hitting you, and after?”
“I didn’t like it. I’d rather you didn’t do it again.”
Is anyone ignorant enough to believe for even a split second that he will respect her VERY explicitly telling him NO MORE?
“You weren’t meant to like it.”
“Why do you like it?” she asks, and her voice is stronger.
Remember when he told her it would be pleasurable for her? He lied. He’s a lying liar who lies and beats and rapes.
Shit. I can’t tell her why.
“You really want to know?”
It’s because she reminds him of his mom. She’s a stand-in for his fantasies of his mother. Do I need to say what’s wrong with that?
“Oh, trust me, I’m fascinated.” Now she’s being sarcastic.
“Careful,” I warn her.
She pales at my expression. “Are you going to hit me again?”
“No, not tonight.” I think you’ve had enough.
Not tonight. Meaning he intends to hit her again, even though she just told him she didn’t want him hitting her again.
How can ANYONE think this book portrays a consensual relationship? Ana is broken and ignored.
“I like the control it gives me, Anastasia. I want you to behave in a particular way, and if you don’t, I shall punish you, and you will learn to behave the way I desire. I enjoy punishing you. I’ve wanted to spank you since you asked me if I was gay.”
And I don’t want you rolling your eyes at me, or being sarcastic.
GET. OVER. IT. Someone asking a question doesn’t mean you get to hit them!!
“So you don’t like the way I am.” Her voice is small.
“I think you’re lovely the way you are.”
“So why are you trying to change me?”
“I don’t want to change you.” God forbid. You’re enchanting. “I’d like you to be courteous and to follow the set of rules I’ve given you and not defy me. Simple.” I want you safe.
FUCKING LIAR!! He DOES want to change her. He wants to change everything about her, and will beat her up to do it! If she was so “enchanting” to him, then he wouldn’t be forcing her to stop being who she is. She’s not safe with him. Physically she’s being harmed. Emotionally and mentally she’s being battered. Sexually she’s being assaulted and raped. What’s left?
She asks if he wants to punish her, and he answers in the affirmative, and when she says she doesn’t understand why he wants to hurt her, he says it’s just the way he is.
No, being gay is the way you are. Having a foot fetish is the way you are. Wanting to beat the hell out of people who tell you they don’t want you to should NEVER be accepted as the way you are. Would anyone accept a pedophile saying that raping babies is just the way they are?
Insert him getting aroused by a fantasy of beating the woman who is crying in front of him and asking him not to.
“So it’s not the pain you’re putting me through?”
“A bit, to see if you can take it.” Actually, it’s a lot, but I don’t want to go there right now. If I tell her, she’ll throw me out. “But that’s not the whole reason. It’s the fact that you are mine to do with as I see fit—ultimate control over someone else. And it turns me on. Big-time.”
Don’t you love how he lies to her again because he knows she wouldn’t approve of the truth? It’s amazing to me that anyone can see it as sexy that he’s turned on by controlling a woman who doesn’t want to be controlled. It’s hurting her. It’s not sexy.
I must lend her a book or two on being a submissive.
Because he really does want to change her.
Some crap about how he’s “always been with like-minded people” (there’s a nitfy website be should be on), so shame on her for not being like them.
“And you haven’t answered my question—how did you feel afterward?”
She blinks. “Confused.”
“You were sexually aroused by it, Anastasia.”
You have an inner freak, Ana. I know it.
Blaming the victim for her physiological responses working even when being assaulted. Lovely. As if rape-victims don’t have enough to deal with.
Closing my eyes, I recall her wet and wanting around my fingers after I spanked her. When I open them, she’s staring at me, pupils dilated, her lips parted…her tongue moistening her top lip. She wants it, too.
Common reaction to fear too.
“You have no problem being honest with me in print. Your e-mails always tell me exactly how you feel. Why can’t you do that in conversation? Do I intimidate you that much?”
Her fingers fiddle with the quilt.
“You beguile me, Christian. Completely overwhelm me. I feel like Icarus, flying too close to the sun.” Her voice is quiet, but brimming with emotion.
Yup. She’s scared, not aroused. When Icarus went too near the sun, and ignored the warnings of others, his paper wings incinerated and he fell and died. Ana is ignoring everyone, and it getting too close to someone dangerous. She’s going to be killed before she’s 30.
“Oh, Anastasia, you’ve bewitched me. Isn’t it obvious?”
That’s why I’m here.
She’s not convinced.
Ana. Believe me. “You’ve still not answered my question. Write me an e-mail, please. But right now, I’d really like to sleep. Can I stay?”
“Do you want to stay?”
“You wanted me here.”
“You haven’t answered my question,” she persists.
Impossible woman. I just drove like a maniac to get here after your fucking message. There’s your answer.
That’s not an answer. Who among us hasn’t hightailed to get somewhere where we didn’t want to be? No, he didn’t get there because he felt bad. He saw a way to manipulate her. Be the prince on the white horse.
He TELLS us that he grumbles he’ll respond by email (after chastising her for emailing him) instead of showing us by actually telling her. A+ writing, folks. All my English teachers would have given F’s for that.
Before I can change my mind and head back to The Heathman, I stand, empty my pockets, remove my shoes and socks, and strip off my pants. Slinging my jacket over her chair, I climb into her bed.
“Lie down,” I growl.
Doesn’t he sound SO happy to be there?! I think Wednesday Addams was more enthused about going to camp.
And now I need to watch that movie in a few minutes. I think it’s on Netflix. If now, that’s what torrents are for. I justify torrents since I’ve bought that movie on tape, then got a DVD player, then on DVD, but have now gone all digital. I don’t wanna keep dropping money to upgrade my license to watch the movies I’ve paid for. Besides, we do use a legal pay service. So I don’t think it’s actually torrents. I don’t know. My husband does it all.
Guess what!! That comparatively interesting detour is over. Back to the recap. Well, after I start the movie.
Aw, crud. Only the first movie is on there. I’ll take it!
Ah, the opening music. Morticia and Gomez are sexy as hell. Passionate, loving, and they literally use torture as foreplay. But THEY are consensual about it! The should give Grey some lessons.
I’m all melty now. 🙂
“Lie on your side, facing away from me.”
I don’t want you to touch me.
He wants her to think he wants to be there, but it’s so obvious he doesn’t. He’s repulsed by her touching him. He should just leave instead of doing this crap he’s doing.
He has a symbolic dream of symbolism about picking apples with his brother. The baby-talk used to write those dreams makes me irrationally angry, but as an adult, it’s my responsibility to control myself instead of throwing this computer at the television.
Know what else is sexier than this book?
And, Folks, it ain’t sexy. If you’re morbidly curious, I think this link is the full thing. I’ve got the real Addams Family movie, and there’s better porn, so have no interest in watching it again so see if it’s the full movie. Have fun. It’s funny once. That’s once more than there is humor in this book.
The wakes up with morning wood. The scene that follows would be cute if they could pass for a loving couple. A bit of teasing that reminds me of me and my husband. But they have an abusive relationship, so him teasing her with “[his] favorite body part” comes off creepy.
Oh, wait! There IS something funny! It’s 7:30, and he needs to be in Portland by 8, and he thinks he’s going to make it if he hurries. HAHAHHAHAAAAA!!! Oh hell no. HEEEELLLL no. In real life, getting from here to there means taking the I5 bridge. Getting over the bridge in the morning is HELL. Lots of traffic. To make it worse, right as you near the bridge, there’s an on-ramp further slowing the road. Once you get over it, and get to past the I5/404 split (another painfully slow area), you have to get through the exit 302 nightmare, where you have a three-lane area with an on-ramp making it four lanes, right where people are trying to get off at an exit to a part of downtown right before is merges into two lanes, with another exit to another major freeway… Let’s just say that I make the drive myself about five times a week (ten or more during Nutcracker season), and even in lower-traffic times, I give myself 40 minutes going into town. During rush-hour, give it 90 minutes.
So I guess he used magic. Whatever. He left her place a few minutes after 7:30, and is IN his hotel room, with his car already parked, at 8:02am. He made it in about 20 minutes during rush hour. James was a millionaire when she wrote this book, and this section wasn’t in the original. She should have spent a few grand and come here to make these drives and see if everything she said made sense. She’s not very popular here though.
He gets on WebEx (seriously, we use Skype here), and has Andrea, who is in Seattle, order him breakfast from the hotel he’s sitting in. What a lazy ass.
He checks into the online meeting, and I check out of this book. Half this chapter is left, and Gomez just pulled the book called “Greed.”
And with that, I’ll sign off on this post, and thrill you in a few more days with another email from Ana since it’s not like Grey’s paying attention to the meeting. Why would he, when Ana emails him and he’s horny and a jerk, as usual?