Saturday, May 28, 2011 – Christian Grey and the Day No One Cared About but We Had to Read Anyway

Here’s a super short bonus chapter:  Saturday, May 28, 2011.

Christian picks up his delighted and chattery younger excuse not to help Ana move, er, I mean sister at the airport. Mia chatters about France and cooking school and shopping and all manner of rich girl things. Christian has a flashback about Mia as a baby – which is moderately disturbing since he’s the one driving. Oh well, Mia just keeps on yapping and doesn’t even notice.

In the flashback Christian’s mother lets him hold baby Mia, and he loves her sooooo much that ‘Mia’ is his first word. The montage finishes up as Christian pulls into the driveway of his parents’ mansion, with Mia still talking. Phew! Everybody made it out alive!

Christian helps Mia carry her mountain of luggage into the house. Women! Amirite? Christian is disgusted by the maid, who makes ‘cow eyes’ at him. Women again! Amirite?! Huh? Huh?

amirite

Yeah, maybe Christian is just a gross asshole. It’s more than a remote possibility.

Christian goes to his personal trainer, goes jogging, and texts Elliot to find out Ana and Kate’s new address. He plans to send creepy stalker gifts to Ana, and presumably, dead animals to Kate, whom he hates with the white hot intensity of a thousand spoiled rich kids.

The riding crop, the one Christian ordered in the last chapter arrives. Did I mention that? Ana had a dream about a particular kind of riding crop so Christian ordered it as a surprise. Surprise motherfucker! He has the requisite Zapp Brannigan-esque thoughts, and then gets distracted by a phone call from Elena.

Now that he is totally not in love at all (it’s just an arrangement!) with Ana, for some reason he doesn’t want to talk to his old lover who’s been stringing him along all these years. Huh. Weird.

Then we skip to dinner with Mumsy and Dadsy at the mansion. The whole family gossips about who Christian’s new woman can possibly be. They giggle like school children at Christian’s expense. Gawd. No wonder he didn’t want to tell them about Ana. Elliot even exclaims loudly, “You know she popped his cherry?” Okay, Elliot is an adult man of nearly 30.

ew

It’s also interesting that, not only did his family think he was gay, they thought he was a gay virgin. Soooo…okay.

Elliot tries to stir up trouble by inviting Ana over for dinner at the mansion. Mumsy Grace strikes like a hungry wolverine – she wants to meet this woman! Christian doesn’t really give an answer and excuses himself before things can get weirder.

And that’s all she wrote. That is literally all she wrote.

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Chapter 13 of 50 Shades Freed Serves up a Heaping Helping of Boredom

So now we are in beautiful non-skiing-weather Aspen. And still not much happens in terms of story.

waitinggame

Ana is all wowed because Aspen is super Richie Rich and amazing. She talks about coming back in the winter to ski, and Christian informs her that she is not allowed to ski ever as it is too dangerous. Skiing is not too dangerous for Christian btw – he is allowed to do it. So I guess she has to stay home and make the sandwiches while everyone else gets to ski?

Anyway, it doesn’t matter now because it’s the summer and there is no skiing to be had. Going to Aspen in the summer comes across as a calculated move by Christian: all there is to do is fishing and shopping. So Ana can pick from those.

Nothing

But first, of course, we have to get to the house. Taylor shows up at the airport with a minivan and has to apologise to Christian for the embarrassing ride. Then the whole gang (Asstian, Ethan, Mia, Kate, and Elliot) loads up into the Mystery Machine and heads for the haunted mansion…er…I mean, Christian’s super swanky chalet in Aspen.

On the way, there’s lots of boring small talk that really doesn’t advance the story line in any way, shape, or form. Ana notices that Kate isn’t talking much, and seems to be brooding over something. Ana can’t figure out what it is but decides that it must be because of Gia. Remember Gia, the so called slutty architect; the one who Ana hates for no good reason? Ana remembers that Gia designed Elliot’s Aspen home, so that must be what is bothering Kate. Does that make any sense to any of you? Because it sure as shit doesn’t make any sense to me.

But whatever.

They get to the house and Ana describes it as ‘modern and stark’. Because rich people in 50Shadesland only like one style of architecture and décor – white, white, and more white. Ana is a bit overwhelmed when she realises that Christian has staff here too. I guess she thought they’d be roughing it? Like a high end camping trip?

Christian introduces Ana to the housekeeper, Carmella. She’s an elderly granny-type so Ana doesn’t need to be irrationally jealous of her. So that’s nice I guess. She says that Christian’s tongue “caresses my name…” What does that even mean? Think about it: her name is Anastasia. How do you caress those particular letter sounds with your tongue? Those are stops and sibilants and what’s N? I’ll look it up.

Now if her name was Louisa, or Amaria, or say, I don’t know…BELLA, I could totally buy that. You could totally caress an L or an R sound with your tongue. Try it. Seriously. Do it. Nobody can hear you.

But again,

llama

 

Christian makes a huge show of carrying Ana over the threshold like a newlywed. The interior is all white and cream, and it makes Ana think of Gia again. They go on an uneventful tour of the house where we are assured that everything is plush and super expensive.

Ana makes a point of mentioning to Christian how much it bothers her being in a house that Gia designed. Seriously. She blurts out that she knows Elliot screwed Gia. Christian is all, “Elliot’s fucked most of Seattle, Ana.”

This is, of course, the only proper answer. Ana is scandalised. But then she gets teary, and Christian gets emo, and they make out for a bit. Christian insists they go have lunch so we’re cheated out of sex again. The gang eats lunch and then they decide to break up into boys and girls for activity time. The boys go fishing and the girls go shopping.

Shopping

Somewhere along the way Mia decides that they are all going clubbing, even though Ana isn’t allowed out and especially not in anything as revealing as one wears to a club. Mia and Kate force Ana to purchase skimpy clothes and ridiculously high heels. Ana, being the spineless jellyfish that she is, allows Kate and Mia to dress her in whatever they want, even though she doesn’t particularly care for it. Oh well, who cares? It’s Christian’s money they are spending.

Then comes the obligatory fakey drama for this chapter. Ana looks out the window of whatever overpriced store they are in and sees Elliot. Elliot is supposed to be fishing! But instead he has snuck into town to meet a woman! Not just any woman of course, it’s GIA. Hateful, whorish, underdressed Gia. Of course it is.

Now, Elliot and Gia don’t actually DO anything. They aren’t kissing, or holding hands, or whatever. Elliot walks into a jewelry store ALONE and when he walks out Gia is with him. They say goodbye and go their separate ways. As far as Ana knows it could just be a coincidence. The story isn’t clear where Gia is based, but she remodelled the Grey house in Aspen so she could very well live here.

But Ana is aghast.

Shocked

She is mortified, and scandalised and all the other similar words. She can’t decide whether she should tell Kate about Elliot’s horrid indiscretion, but in the end she doesn’t. Inside her head she wonders, “What the hell is Elliot Manwhore Grey playing at?”

Nice, eh?

The girls shop and then repair to the house for cocktails. Kate gets drunk and starts crying. It turns out the real reason Kate was upset had nothing to do with Gia. Quelle surprise! Christian was mad at Kate for taking Ana out for drinks so he called Elliot and chewed him out. Then Elliot called Kate and chewed HER out in turn. They haven’t really spoken since then, so Kate doesn’t know where they stand relationship-wise.

The boys get back from fishing, and Christian and Ana head off the have sex and a bath and more sex while everyone waits around for them to go for dinner and then clubbing. I’m delighted because Ana has started to actually use the word ‘groin’ in reference to her genitals. It’s not great, but it’s a start. I’m so proud of you, Ana. *sniff*

Theygrowupsofast

After the sex, Ana confronts Christian about seeing Gia and Elliot together. He tells Ana they are friends. And that Elliot is in love with Kate, even though Kate is gross. That makes Ana mad, and for once it should. Kate is her best friend, and yet Christian is always telling Ana how unattractive Kate is.

Ana gets dressed for the club and the emails Christian, who is in the living room, to come and check out her dress. She needs Christian to approve it before they can go out. Christian is angry of course. He loves the outfit, but not the idea of Ana leaving the house in it. However, he has decided to be the bigger person and allow Ana to wear it even though he disapproves. How big of him.

Presumably they head off to dinner without incident, and we rejoin them at dessert. We end off the chapter with a super awkward and contrived proposal – Elliot asks Kate to marry him as the entire restaurant looks on. The chapter closes not with Kate saying yes or no, but with Ana thinking, Holy shit!

Holy shit, indeed.

Futurama

Chapter 13: Anastasia Steele and the Seriously WTF is Wrong with You?!

Chapter 13 is short, sweet and yet somehow still manages to pack in your full daily recommended intake of What the Fuck.

Reaction GIF: what the fuck?, Richard Riehle, Office Space

Last chapter we left Ana in her old apartment staring down the barrel of a gun. As Chapter 13 opens it turns out that Leila (ghost-girl-ex’s name) isn’t actually pointing the gun at Ana, just holding it limply and looking around vaguely.

Ana’s “subconscious” swoons and leaves her to deal with gun lady alone. Ana’s mind ‘goes into overdrive’ and she comes up with a brilliant emergency plan: make tea. She offers Leila a cup and goes about making tea as if everything is normal. She says that Leila looks at her like she’s an ‘exhibit in a freak show.’ It makes Ana mad, “Jeez, I’m not the freak here,” she thinks. Yeah, I’m not convinced.

She asks Leila if she’s alone, and if she needs some help, and most importantly, would she like some tea? Leila is confused by her questions (me too!) and just whispers the same thing over and over and mumbles to herself about ‘the Master’ like freakin’ Gollum. I mean, seriously, what does it have in its pocketses? Its nasssty…little…pocketsesssss.

Leila then starts repeating that the Master is a dark, dark man. We get it. He’s dark. Ana is aghast. He is not! She thinks, he has joined me in the light. Eugh. Could that have been any lamer? Nope. But the dark side has cookies, or so I’m told.

Ana doesn’t get anywhere with her offers of tea, and so finally after what seems like an eternity, she suggests that maybe Gollum, er, Leila ought to hand over the gun. But Leila would really rather just keep the gun, thanks, as she has people to shoot.

Finally, FINALLY Christian bursts in to the apartment having finally realised that there was a problem. Christian subdues Leila pretty quickly since Leila has forgotten that being a submissive is just for play time. Christian stares her down, and this is where the whole chapter goes full WTF.

Ana sees Leila and Christian together and can sense their connection. Remember the sexy force field from the elevator? Ana feels it right here in the apartment, but it isn’t aimed at her it’s aimed at Leila! Ana is shocked and horrified and jealous and any number of other stupid and totally uncalled for adjectives.

After the ordeal of nearly being shot by Christian’s crazy ex, Ana sensibly refuses to leave when she has the chance. Christian orders her to leave, and still she refuses to go. “Why?” she whispers at him.

When he glares back and orders her to leave again she gets confused and thinks, I think he’s trying to convey some kind of message. Yes! A message! All that air escaping through his throat is some kind of message. He’s telling you to get the fuck out! But Ana doesn’t leave. If this were a horror movie, Ana would be the first one to die.

Taylor, our head Keystone Rent-a-Cop has to carry her out the apartment to safety and she spends the entire rest of the chapter absolutely, 100% certain that Christian and Leila are getting it on up at her old place.

Seriously. Remember some ways back when Christian told her that Leila needed psychiatric help and not prison? I do. My first thought was that he was convincing or forcing her into a treatment program. And that is what in fact happens. What any reasonable person would think was happening. Buuuuuttttt…not Ana, she imagines them screwing in every depraved way possible.

Outside the apartment she meets up with Ethan, who was conveniently late and so never encountered Leila. Phewwww! Ana was so…oh wait, nope, Ana never really cared what happened to Ethan. Ana tells him what happened to her, because everything is about her. Ethan has a modicum of sense and tells Ana to call the police, but Ana says, “No, it’s not like that.” And for some reason, Ethan believes her. So instead of calling the police, they go out to a bar to get loaded. Plausible!

They go to the closest bar, which happens to be across the street, and proceed to get loaded at Ethan’s expense because Ana’s purse is in the car. Across the street. Oopsie! Ana tells Ethan the longer version of her story and convinces him that her boyfriend is sexing up his ex, who tried to kill her, in their apartment, as they speak.

Ana gets all sullen and emo, but keeps on drinking. She thinks how nice it is of Ethan to stay with her even though she isn’t much of a conversation partner. Well, honey, he has nowhere else to go. He’s staying at *your* place. Where the Christian Grey vs. The World evil ex intervention is going down. He has no choice.

As they emerge from the bar, our two super sleuths see Leila bundled into a car by Chrisitan’s personal therapist and a woman dressed in scrubs. Ana is heartbroken. She is confused and (seriously) has no idea what is going on. She can’t connect this turn of events to filthy filthy sex, so she doesn’t know what’s happening. She decides the best course of action is to continue drinking.

When she leaves the bar, Ana feels ‘fuzzy.’ Yer drunk ‘Arry! She doesn’t even know. After leaving Ethan to fend for himself (Ana left the key behind in the apartment) she stumbles back to Christian’s place drunk as a skunk. Turns out Christian and his crack security team had no idea where Ana was, even though they were sitting in the window of the bar directly across the street, and Taylor saw them go. Christian doesn’t understand where she has been, and Ana doesn’t understand why he’s angry. They are sooo perfect for each other, aren’t they. They can be endlessly mad and confused for no reason. They get into an epic fight over, essentially, nothing.

 

 

Christian demands to know if she is drunk, and Ana has no idea how he can tell. With his magic vampire, er…billionaire powers. It’s totally not because you stumbled in reeking of cheap booze and bad decisions.

Ana demands to know just what Christian and Leila were doing all that time. She is sure it was sex. Surprise of all surprises, it turns out that he has convinced her to check herself into a psychiatric hospital. Obviously. It’s obvious to the reader, and it should have been obvious to Ana. But sometimes it is convenient to the building of fakey drama for Ana to be dumb as a post.

But still Ana is not convinced. She FELT the sexy force field. Christian tells her, “This is not about you, Ana.” Oh baby, you just said the wrong thing to the wrong girl. Everything, EVERYTHING is about Ana.

Ana pulls out her trump card – Christian’s morbid fear of abandonment – and plays it by threatening to leave. He collapses in a big emo heap at her feet. And Ana is all, “Haw haw, now YOU are the submissive one.”

Well, thank all the gods there be, because that’s where it ends. I can only take so much of the head games, even fictional ones. I don’t even want to imagine the petty head games we have in store for next chapter. But I don’t have to imagine – because I’ll read it so you don’t have to.

You Won’t Have to Think Too Hard About Ch. 13 of 50 Shades of Grey

Chapter 13. Lucky 13. Not so lucky. After all, I had to read it and nothing much happens. The short version: facepalm, facepalm, facepalm, facepalm. I still don’t give a rat’s ass about Ana or Christian: neither of them is particularly likeable. The sex is not very good, and not very often. I don’t need a book if I want bad, infrequent sex. That’s what real life is for! Why couldn’t it be good and plenty? Dark and lovely? Bed, bath and beyond? Wait. I’m channelling the Homestarrunner. Let’s watch Homestar instead.

Okay, okay. Back to Fifty Shades…here’s the exhilarating action: Ana calls her mom, then reads her email. Woo hoo! I was on the edge of my seat! In the last Chapter our crappy couple made a plan to meet Wednesday for a round of contract negotiations. The edge-of-your-seatery continues as  Christian emails Ana a definition of the word ‘submissive’. Ana responds by emailing him the definition of the word compromise. Look. We get it. You both know how to use dictionary.com. Enough already. Now send him a cat video. That’s what the internet is all about. The dynamic duo then exchange seven (seven!) emails to confirm that they will meet at The Heathman Hotel at 7pm. Gripping! Then Ana calls her dad. Could this get any more boring?

Yes. In fact it could.

Ana goes to work where she turns down the boss’s brother, Paul,  who asks her for a date. Paul does not believe she has a date.  He outright accuses her of lying about it (nice guy – why does she keep turning him down again?).

Then the gripping drama continues as Ana has a shower! Then blow dries her hair! Then gets dressed! She decides it’s a good idea to wear stiletto heels, even though she falls ass over teakettle in flats. Much is made of her clumsiness but no comedic payoff is forthcoming. Come on! She doesn’t fall over once. Or even teeter precariously. Hmph. I want my money back.

Then it’s finally time for the whole point of this pointless chapter – the negotiation meeting. They are taken to a private dining room where they are fed mixed nuts and some olives. Seriously? The swankiest hotel in Portland and they give you mixed nuts and olives? Are they really swanky mixed nuts at least? There’s just no way to know as James never describes them. I know I’ve harped about this before, and I know food isn’t the point of the book but if Ana is so overwhelmed by the Richie Richness of Christian’s lifestyle, she’d notice the details. And the point of the book, any book, is to use description to make you feel like you’re really there. I feel like I’m in a Motel Six.

Christian has already ordered, and Ana is secretly glad that she doesn’t have to think anymore. Its pretty obvious to all parties that Ana and thinking don’t mix. Christian tries to sell her on the contract based on the fact that she won’t have to think anymore if she is his sub. IKR? Ana has already had to choose between two sets of clothes that Kate laid out for her. That’s all the thinking she can do for one night apparently. More and more I get the feeling that Kate really isn’t her ‘roommate’. At some point I’m fairly sure it will be revealed that Kate is actually Ana’s personal care attendant.

They finally start talking about the contract. Christian has brought Ana’s emailed list of objections. They manage to talk about the food and sleep provisions. Ana refuses to sleep or eat. She tells Christian that no one will dictate what she eats! Odd, since she’s been perfectly happy to let Christian order every meal they’ve eaten together. Ha! But he can’t make her actually eat them! Passive-agressivey goodness!

They don’t talk very long before they get all hot and bothered. Christians eyes, “burn molten silver with compelling need.” Molten silver is actually orange. His eyes are orange? Holy Fucking hell, is he the GD devil?! We never find out, because instead of having sex, Ana bolts for the door and then goes home and cries. Again. Nothing says healthy relationship like incessant crying.

The chapter then closes with another gripping email. Ana laments that Christian can’t have a proper relationship because this is all he knows. Okaaaayyy…keep telling yourself that, sweet cheeks. I’m pretty sure he’s well aware of how a normal relationship works. He just isn’t interested in normal. That’s not the same thing. Ugh. Will either of our crappy couple ever normal up? Will they do the right thing and never speak again? Will Christian have Ana killed and dumped in the ocean? Probably not. But you’ll only find out by waiting for the next gripping email filled installment of I Read 50 Shades So You Don’t Have To.