At the end of Fifty Shades of Grey, Ana breaks up with Christian Grey. In the very first chapter of the sequel Fifty Shades Darker, they make out.
Anyway, you’re actually caught up on about 530 pages of the Fifty Shades trilogy with that, so let’s venture forward!
Christian takes Ana from Jose’s art show, makes out with her in an alley, and then takes her out to dinner. Ana, being the strong female character that she is, goes along with it and never voices or thinks any kind of objection. Except when Christian orders food for her.
“And if I don’t like steak?”
He sighs. “Don’t start, Anastasia.”
“I am not a child, Christian.”
“Well, stop acting like one.”
BAM! Christian then calls Ana out on leading Jose on to try to make him jealous, which is a fair point, although it’s more than a little rich coming from Christian “I have fucked eleventy billion and twelve women let me talk about this a lot hurf burf” Grey.
“Would you like to choose the wine?” he asks, raising his eyebrows at me expectantly, arrogance personified. He knows I know nothing about wine.
I actually thought this line was pretty funny until I read, like, the rest of the sentence where James explained the joke to us. Clearly the humor of wine connoisseur Christian Grey knowingly suggesting complete wine novice Anastasia Steele was just too subtle!
Anyway, Ana suggests they put more effort into setting “the right tone for an intimate and honest discussion about the future” and “smile[s] at him sweetly”, so I guess it’s decided that they’re gonna try getting back together all of a sudden. James keeps the whole breakneck narrative pacing and rushing every single thing going, and within the course of a half a page (page 21, if you want to verify this) it is also decided/revealed that:
- Ana not using the safe word during the spanking during the last book’s climax (sorry) is to blame for their breakup (actual line from Christian Grey: “We might have avoided all this suffering”)
- Ana has already forgotten that Christian told her what she said in her sleep. Come on, Ana, this was like an entire subplot in the last book. We easily spent sixty pages on it.
- Ana is still barely capable of identifying objects and reacting to them.
Holy hell. Food.
And it wouldn’t be a tender Fifty Shades heart-to-heart if Christian didn’t say something super creepy that would make any sane person leave and maybe get a restraining order.
“So help me God, Anastasia, if you don’t eat, I will take you across my knee here, in this restaurant, and it will have nothing to do with my sexual gratification. Eat!”
They leave the restaurant to Christian’s car, Christian has a long conversation with Taylor, and Ana speculates on how mysterious it is and what it could maybe be about!
This isn’t their usual protocol. I’m curious. What are they talking about. Moments later, they both climb in
Half a page later, Christian says that he asked Taylor not to listen to their conversation.
MYSTERIOUS MYSTERY SOLVED.
In case you were let down by the absurd amount of dramatic tension (read: any at all) surrounding Christian telling his driver not to listen to a private conversation, DO NOT WORRY, it is then more than made up for by the best line ever written in the history of literature.
“Let me ask you something first. Do you want a regular vanilla relationship with no kinky fuckery at all?”
Ariel already spent, like, her entire post yesterday talking about how hilarious and awesome this is, so there’s really nothing else I can say about it. Thanks, Ariel.
“Kinky fuckery?” I squeak.
Much like Ariel, I am very much looking forward to making all of our friends super uncomfortable by repeating this dialogue when we’re back on campus in a few weeks.
They have another conversation about their feelings and their sex life and it is the same conversation they have always had about their feelings and their sex life. But I’ll sum it up for you again and save you from what has to be a solid 300 pages of these books put together by this point. Ana likes Christian, but not all of his kinky weird sex stuff. Christian likes Ana, but likes the weird stuff.
Surprisingly, Christian says something normal and suggests they just start out simple and gradually experiment with things as they go. For some reason, this completely confuses Ana. Hilariously so.
I stare at him, stunned, with no thoughts in my head at all – like a computer crash.
Then it’s Christian’s turn and he explains his feelings.
“[…] the thought of anyone else having you is like a knife twisting in my dark soul.”
They talk. They kiss. They talk. Jesus Christ, they talk. They talk about kinky fuckery and Christian’s abusive childhood and how Ana’s boss is taking her out for a drink tomorrow night- wait, what.
“My boss wants me to go for a drink with him tomorrow.”
Christian’s face hardens. “Does he, now?” His voice is laced with latent menace.
“To celebrate my first week,” I add quickly.
When did Ana decide she was going to do this? More importantly, why did she decide to go out for a drink with her boss who already kind of creeps her out?
Christian gives Ana another goddamn gift, this time an iPad. I feel it’s only fair to point out that he set the background to a picture of the assembled model glider she gave him on his desk in his office, and this is pretty adorable. But just in case we weren’t sure what was going on, Ana then spends the rest of the chapter explaining how the iPad and everything on it represent how sorry Christian is and how hard he’s going to try to make things work.
Am I reading too much into this? I am probably reading too much into this?
Fucking English majors, amirite????