Last week, nothing happened. This week nothing + anal on a plane happens. Now that you know that, do I even have to write about this chapter?
[Matthew says: I’m just gonna go ahead and put this gif here so we can get this joke out of the way:
Now back to the smut.]
Before getting in to Gideon’s limo so they can head off on their weekend getaway, Eva leaves a weird voicemail for Cary asking him to consider moving some place new with her and Gideon. I can’t imagine which situation I’d hate more, being a couple and living with Cary, or being Cary and living with Eva and Gideon.
Once inside the limo, Eva tells Gideon what happened with her mother at lunch, sexism ensues much to everyone’s surprise I’m sure.
“She’s so focused on money. That’s nothing new, but I’m used to her acting like it’s just common sense to want financial security. Today, she seemed … sad. Resigned.”
His thumb stroked soothingly over my knuckles. “Maybe she’s feeling guilty for cheating.”
“She should! But I don’t think that’s it. I think it’s something else, but I don’t have a clue.”
“Do you want me to look into it?”
I’m genuinely shocked neither of them suggested getting Cary to Google around the problem. Even more confusingly, I’m not actually sure where Day is going with this weird, tiny thread of plot. [Matthew says: To be fair, we say that about everything in this book.] Is she leading towards some sort of astonishing reason that Eva’s mother is so obsessed with money to the point where it keeps her from being with the love of her life? She’s already said that even though she has tons of money on her own it isn’t enough for her to go be with Eva’s father…could she be being blackmailed? Or is this just like, “She had all of her lunch money stolen as a child, and she’s never gotten over that.”
Anyway, here’s the sexism I promised:
I turned my head to meet his gaze. I didn’t answer right away, thinking it over. “I do, yes. But I feel icky about it, too. I researched you, Dr. Lucas, Corinne … I keep digging for people’s secrets instead of just asking about them outright.”
“So ask her,” he said, in that matter-of-fact male way.
“I did. She said she’d talk about it when I wasn’t upset.”
“Women,” he scoffed, with warm amusement in his eyes.
Those silly women can never be matter-of-fact with all of those pesky feelings getting in the way all the time.
And where does Gideon get off acting like this is a women-centric issue? He’s always avoiding telling Eva the truth about things for even dumber reasons. “Oh, you were in the middle of eating chicken, so I felt like I should wait to tell you I saw Corinne last night.” Nice try, Gideon, but I’ve got my eye on you.
As soon as they’re on the plane, the theme of the chapter drastically shifts to being about control. I vaguely remember when this series seemed like it was going to be more focused on using BDSM/power play in the bedroom to help the characters move on from on their pasts. [Matthew says: No idea why we would have thought that.] But it’s actually almost never mentioned unlike all the showers/baths that are taken together. Well, apparently it’s a thing again!
I loved being at his mercy. As much as I loved making him lose his mind over me, I couldn’t deny that his control was a major turn-on. I knew how absolute that control could be, which made it possible for me to trust him completely. I didn’t think there was anything I wouldn’t allow him to do to me.
Which was a conviction that would be tested sooner rather than later, I realized when I entered the sleeping cabin and saw the red silk-and-suede restraints lying so prettily on the white comforter.
Also, I don’t understand what she means by, “I knew how absolute that control could be, which made it possible for me to trust him completely.” So if he was only partially controlling that would be more difficult to trust because he’s not, what, fully committing?
What’s more interesting here than ever was in Fifty Shades is that Eva talks about how she can understand Gideon’s desire to possess and dominate her completely, because she feels the urge to do the same to him. [Matthew says: That’s a good point, I guess. Fifty Shades‘s Ana only ever seemed as involved in the proceedings as the bedsheets.]
There’s a lot of genuine love and trust going on in this scene as Gideon talks Eva through everything and makes sure she’s comfortable. Like this,
“Let’s be very clear about this, Eva. Your safeword isn’t for me. It’s for you. All you have to say to me is no or stop, but just like wearing the cuffs makes you feel bound, saying your safeword will put your mind in the right place. Do you understand?”
As usual, I’m momentarily impressed by this series, only to then be irritated/disgusted/angry shortly after.
“Ah, Eva. You’ve got the greediest cunt. I’m going to spend the rest of my life keeping it satisfied.”
Day has got to be doing this on purpose. You can’t start writing a half-way decent scene only to plummet into complete nastiness. Either that or it’s a weird writing tick she can’t control. Cause she can’t possibly be like, “Shit, I completely forgot to mention Eva’s greedy cunt! My fans will never forgive me.” [Matthew says: I mean… maybe! Eva’s vagina is always described as greedy (always), so in a way it’s the novel’s most consistently-defined character.]
Most of the sex scene is actually skipped over, and the next scene has Eva waking up after their post-coital nap. She finds some lotion in one of the nearby drawers and gets a “wicked” idea.
Taking a deep breath of courage, I set the tube of lotion on his stomach. “I want to be inside you, ace.”
Don’t get me wrong, even though I don’t find this sexy, I still applaud Day for how she’s handling this part of the book again. Eva is really considerate of Gideon and is really focussed on making this good for both of them. However, this does seem to be taken way too seriously as well.
Running my hands down his chest, I gentled him, let him feel my love for him. How I worshipped him. There was nothing I wouldn’t do for him, except give up.
I won’t give up on trying to penetrate you, Gideon, I won’t!
This scene was decently written, and by “decently written” I mean I wasn’t disgusted the whole time. But it was really unclear whether or not Gideon was enjoying himself or not because of moments like this:
I was gentler with him. Opening my mouth, I sucked his cock. I let the lotion warm on my fingers before I rubbed it against him. And I waited for him to push out for me, to flower open, before I pushed inside with a single finger.
The sound that rattled from him then was like nothing I’d ever heard. It was the cry of a wounded animal, but filled with soul-deep pain. He froze against me, breathing hard against my sex, his finger buried deep, his hard body quivering.
What does that even mean? Can’t wounded animals feel soul-deep pain? And why doesn’t this seem to concern Eva enough for her to stop and see if he’s cool with her continuing? [Matthew says: PRO WRITING TIP: Maybe don’t write the words “the cry of a wounded animal” or “filled with soul-deep pain” in your sex scenes?]
I pulled my mouth off him and crooned, “I’m in you now, baby. You’re doing so good. I’m going to make you feel so good.”
He gasped when I slid a little deeper, my fingertip gliding over his prostate. “Eva!”
His cock swelled even further, turning red, the thick veins standing out along its length, pre-ejaculate spurting onto his lower belly. He was hard as stone, curving up to a point just past his navel. I’d never seen him so aroused and it made me so hot.
Given Eva has told Gideon that even if his body looks like it’s enjoying something it doesn’t mean it’s not a violation, you’d think she’d be more concerned about making sure he’s actually enjoying himself emotionally. But I guess everything is well and good.
It wasn’t until his body stilled that I pulled away, turning around shakily to pull him into my arms. We were a sweaty, sticky mess and I loved that it didn’t matter.
Gideon buried his damp face between my breasts and cried.
Sorry for spoilers, but when I first read this I thought Gideon was so disturbed by what had happened that he was crying, and I felt horrible for him. This was a completely reasonable thought given the whole wounded animal/deep-soul pain moment.
But then the beginning of the next chapter describes this as the orgasm of his life, so I guess it was just that good actually. I just wanted to clarify so none of you wasted any time feeling sorry for him or anything. You’re welcome.
Question: Would you rather live with Cary or Eva/Gideon?