Okay, I’ll say it: Chapter 11 is just too fucking long.
We closed out Chapter 10 with Ana aghast at Christian’s pronouncement that he wants to spank her and then sex her up right on the pool table, if he wins. And of course, he *does* win. Why wouldn’t he?
Christian asks if Ana is going to be a sore loser. Geddit?! Sore? Loser?
Ana answers that it depends how hard he is going to spank her. Can you roll your eyes so hard that your brain twists out of your ears? Is that a thing? Because I might be pretty close here. Their dialogue is SO GROSS! It’s like Captain Hammer is dating himself.
Christian orders Ana to disrobe and she suddenly can’t move. She is, ‘like a complete zombie, my heart pounding, my blood pumping.’ Well, damn! We won’t be having any of those fucked up *incomplete* zombies. And are pounding hearts and pumping blood things that zombies even have? Aren’t they, you know, dead? Either way, it is some gifted prose writing.
Then suddenly, little Miss Mood-a-Minute doesn’t want to be spanked anymore. Remember how she hated spanking? And then last chapter she was mad because she wanted some spanking? Well, now she’s gone over to the anti-spanking camp again. She repeats to herself, this is for him. This is for him.
And she never does take her clothes off. She tells Christian to do it himself, and he obliges, with so much Zapp Brannigan level sexy banter.
Christian then picks up a ruler and menaces Ana with it. She soaks her panties and marvels how much she loves this man. Because it’s only the love that makes it sexy. Christian takes off Ana’s panties and kisses her “there.” I’m serious. “There.” Can I point out that we are two hundred and forty-two pages into the second book of the sex trilogy of the decade and we are still calling Ana’s lady garden a “there.”
Then they talk about the safe word. Christian insists that Ana tell him if he is too rough and Ana is confused about why he confirms this several times. Oh, Ana, you really are our special little bunny, aren’t you? First, Ana isn’t very bright, so it’s likely best for him to confirm that her consent is a thing and that she can withdraw that consent at any time. Second, last time this happened, she refused to use the safe word and then broke up with him because he was too rough.
Then a weird thing happens. I mean, weirder than normal. At this point it’s just one more weird drop lost in a vast sea of what-the-fuck. But you see where I’m going. Christian announces that there will be no safe word. Ana should just tell him to stop, because they are in love now and people who are in love do not need safe words.
You know, unless they are into that sort of thing. Which they are. Ostensibly. So, all you deviants and perverts out there, be warned that you cannot really be in love with your partner, properly in love, if you engage in any play that requires a safe word. I hope I cleared up any misconceptions you may have had.
Seriously though, how fucking insulting is that?
Ana, now naked, is briefly scared that the pool cue from last chapter is going to get involved somehow, but other than a few waggled eyebrows, nothing comes of it. She is still afraid, but now that she is innnnn looooove she is more than happy to indulge Christian’s urge to dole out punishment, even though she doesn’t like it. Except that she does. Except when she doesn’t.
Christian forces her to try to play pool naked, while he spanks her and insults her playing ability. Ana’s personalities go through their various exercise routines at the mere thought of this situation. After warming up, the Inner Goddess personality tangos around the room with a rose between her teeth. Maybe Ana, maybe you ought to pay attention to the sex? Hey? Ana? ANA!
Ana consistently misses her shots, because it’s not easy to play pool while having sex. Christian tells her that if she misses again he will let her have it. Ana wonders, “What? Have what?”
OH COME THE FUCK ON! Are you really that goddamn stupid? What could this possibly mean, this ‘let me have it’? It’s like she’s an alien who doesn’t understand figures of speech spending its first day in a human body. And to make it worse, she only thinks it, so it isn’t her playing coy for Christian’s benefit. It’s real.
Christian then spanks Ana with the ruler until she tells him not to anymore. Which she actually does this time. So, at least there’s that. They then proceed to have boring, normal sex bent over the pool table, and then they lie on the cold floor like the gross pigs they are. Christian orders Ana to take a bath, and it’s really kinda funny that she needs telling. This whole time (they’ve known each other for something like a month), she has only ever taken one bath voluntarily. Sexy!
After the sex, Ana wheedles and pleads for Christian to let her go to work without a body guard. He relents, on the condition that Taylor drops her off and picks her up and she does not leave the building all day. Ana agrees.
The next morning Ana remarks how nice it is to wake up next to Christian on a school day. That’s got to be a mistake. A school day? I feel like this is from the book’s original incarnation as a fanfic and no one caught it. But okay, whatever. Ana gets to work at no particular time, and her leering satyr of a boss does his leering satyr thing. He tells her he has work for her to do. The sexist pig-dog! Work! To do! At work! Well clearly Ana never, because she turns on her computer and spends the rest of the morning emailing Christian.
Christian tells her he had a great weekend and hopes she never leaves him. Ana jumps to the totally unmerited conclusion that Christian wants her to move in. She emails back, and is rudely interrupted by her boss, Jack, and his unrealistic expectation that she will do some work. He invites her to a conference, which Ana is sure is just a cover for him to sexually harass her, but she wants to go anyway.
She asks permission from Christian and he adamantly refuses. Because she needs his permission. Apparently. Ana is furious that Christian is interfering with her career and tells him off. Christian plays the “Oh I trust you, I don’t trust him” card. Which we all know is total bullshit. If only because Ana still wants to go on the trip knowing full well it is just a ploy on Jack’s part. But she still doesn’t get why Christian is mad.
There are just sooo many things wrong with this exchange, I don’t even know whose side I ought to take. I’m starting to wish that crazy ex would show up and just kill them both. Christian solves the problem by changing company policy so that everyone needs his personal permission for work related travel. Ana is furious, and Evil-Jack-Boss is all, ‘Curses! Foiled again!’
They email some more, and then agree to talk about it at home. Because Ana ought to, you know, work. Or something. Somewhere in the middle of the whole debacle, Mrs Robinson writes a friendly email asking Ana to lunch. Well, it would be friendly except for the fact that she recently threatened to kill Ana. You know. That whole thing. Ana makes much of the fact that Mrs. Robinson has found her email address somehow, but really, it is probably on the company website.
Ana’s boss sends her out to buy his lunch. She *is* his personal assistant after all, and Ana is still mad at Christian so she breaks her promise not to leave the building. Of course, Christian is spying on her, and is furious about it. Ana wonders how she will cope with someone who controls her every move, but also muses that his creepy brokenness is endearing and sweet in a way. A creepy, broken way.
Back on the work front, Jack asks Ana to stay late and then makes awkward advances at her. She fends him off by revealing that she is dating The Christian Grey and he backs down, because clearly Christian is alpha as fuck. Christian picks Ana up after work, and their argument is forgotten as Ana is just so glad to be back. Ana is glad to relax and forget the drama. Which might I remind you was CAUSED by Christian.
They get home and apparently there is some kind of sexy sexy force field in the elevator. They can both feel it. They say so out loud. Ana describes it as a powerful blue aura. Apparently this is the part of the book where we stop pretending that this is not a Twilight fanfic.
Christian hits the emergency stop button, and they have sex in the elevator. Where there is very probably a camera. I bet the security guy is feeling pretty lucky! Christian grabs Ana’s panties and they ‘disintegrate in his hands.’ Oh. My. God. That’s just so wrong. They…they disintegrate? Just how long has Ana been wearing them?
Christian proclaims, “I am going to take you now.” He sounds so stilted. Christian is, like, the sexiest robot ever.
After the sex they make more stilted robot small talk.
“I need you so much.”
“And I you.”
I can guarantee, Americans doesn’t talk this way.
They have supper and talk more about Christian’s solar powered phone for the poor, which was a wind-up phone the last time we mentioned it. They joke about how Ana is ‘taming’ Christian (totally a thing that happens in real life) and then Ana shamefully admits that her boss was hitting on her. Christian threatens, once again, to fire him. He tells Ana his crazy-stalker controlling behavior is A OK because he is only trying to keep Ana safe. Sure buddy.
Ana agrees to move in with Christian only on the condition that he back the hell off. Christian is conflicted. That’s OK. That’s about the only emotional state he has. They get all emo AGAIN and I kinda want to barf.
Then all of a sudden Taylor comes in and tells Christian that Mrs. Robinson is on her way up. When asked how that is possible, given the crack security team Christian is supposed to have, Taylor just shrugs. You had one job Taylor! One job!
Ana is aghast (she often is) and instead of having Mrs. Robinson escorted out of his extremely private penthouse by his extremely expert security team, Christian is like, Meh, let’s see what happens. No matter that she has threatened to kill Ana at least twice, or that she has gotten past his security three whole times.
We close chapter 11 with the vague hope that Mrs. Robinson will just shoot them all and have done with it. Maybe it’s just me who hopes that.