Returning to the Crossfire series fills me with both excitement and dread. Though it’s not as boring as the Divergent books, there are often stretches of these books where nothing fucking happens, but then BAM hilarity ensues in the form of greedy cunts, cum on floors, and ridiculous living room orgies. Plus this time we have Gideon’s point of view, which I promise you is as terrible as you’d expect from what I’ve read so far.
Captivated by You Chapter 1
Gideon is alone in the apartment he owns, which is conveniently right next door to Eva and Cary’s place. Gideon angsts about how he can’t even sleep in the same room as his wife because of his nightmares and that he longs for “her lush body.” He also thinks in a way that suggests he knows how forgettable even the main characters in this series are.
I’d left the apartment Eva shared with her best friend, Cary Taylor, only a couple of hours earlier, wanting to give her time to catch a few hours of sleep before she headed into work.
Because if he hadn’t identified Cary by his full name, we’d all be like, “Wait just a minute, does he mean Cary like Eva’s best friend Cary, or some other dude?”
Gideon calls one of his security guards, and even though he felt like he needed to remind us who Cary was, he doesn’t feel the need to remind us who Anne Lucas is:
“Mrs. Cross and Cary Taylor are heading to San Diego today,” I said, my hand curling into a fist at the thought. I didn’t have to say more.
“I want a recent photo of Anne Lucas and a detailed rundown of where she was last night on my desk by noon.”
Don’t feel ashamed if you forgot who she was, I barely remembered that she’s the wife of the psychiatrist who screwed Gideon over when he was a child, saying he was crying rape, so Gideon screwed his wife (Anne Lucas) in return. As an adult, obviously, but just wanted to clarify. I guess that’s a lot less succinct to explain than, “Cary Taylor, Eva’s best friend.”
Eva shows up, and Gideon is like, “Hot sexy boobs boobs lush boobs, sex. Angel.” And then this:
I caught her by the waist when she came close enough, choosing to pull her onto my lap instead. Bending my head, I caught her nipple in my mouth, drawing on her with long, deep sucks. I heard her gasp, felt her body jolt at the sensation, and smiled inwardly. I could do whatever I wanted to her. She’d given me that right. It was the greatest gift I had ever been given.
Because everyone knows that once you marry someone, you can do anything you want to them and it’s cool because by marrying you they’ve already given you permission to do anything! Just stick it right on in ’em any time any place! [Matthew says: I’m so glad we’re seeing this from Gideon’s perspective now. I was having a really hard time understanding this character before I knew that he acted like he owns Eva’s body because he thinks of Eva’s body as something he owns. THIS CHANGES EVERYTHING.]
Eva has serious things to discuss, though, so there’s no time for Gideon to do anything he wants to her! Eva starts talking about how Brett is going to be in San Diego, but then in terms of making sense, things deteriorate rapidly. Oh how I missed Gideon and Eva’s completely nonsensical and confusing arguments:
“She took a deep breath and then held my gaze. “Something’s not right. I’m confused.”
“About what, exactly?”
“Don’t be like that,” she said quietly. “Don’t get all icy and freeze me out.” [Matthew says: This is actually up there with The Room dialogue.]
“You’ll have to forgive me. Listening to my wife tell me she’s confused over another man doesn’t put me in a good mood.” [Ariel says: She never even said about was confused about having feelings for him or anything. Maybe she was just confused about how we’re supposed to believe that Brett’s shitty band is gaining any traction in the music bizz.]
She squirmed out of my lap and I let her, so I could watch her—gauge her—with some distance between us. “I don’t know how to explain it.”
I deliberately ignored the cold knot in my gut. “Try.”
“It’s just—” Looking down, she chewed on her lower lip. “There’s something … not finished.”
My chest grew tight and hot. “Does he turn you on, Eva?”
She stiffened. “It’s not like that.”
“Is it the voice? The tattoos? His magic dick?”
I get that Gideon’s feeling jealous and threatened [Matthew says: vis a vis magic penises] but he’s not even letting Eva try to explain and just jumping to a lot of conclusions in the grossest possible way in true Gideon fashion. At least he’s in-character, I guess. But like where is this magic dick nonsense coming from? I hope this book is about to take a supernatural turn for the best.
I raked her from head to toe, wanting to fuck her and punish her at the same time. I wanted to tie her up, lock her up, safe from anyone who could threaten my grip on her. “He treated you like shit, Eva. Did seeing the ‘Golden’ video make you forget that? Is there something you need that I’m not giving you?
“Don’t be an ass.” Her arms crossed, a defensive pose that angered me further.
I needed her open and soft.
I love how there is no hint of irony when Gideon says he wants to tie and lock Eva up, and in the same breathe talks about how another man treated her like shit. [Matthew says: We can also assume that by “I needed her open”, Gideon’s going to go Jack the Ripper on her, right? Seriously, though, it’s only a matter of time before Crossfire pulls a woman in the refrigerator on us.]
They continue to argue with Eva making increasingly vague statements like, “Please don’t be ugly about this.” ABOUT WHAT EVA?
“I didn’t mean to hurt you.” The diamond on her ring finger—my claim to her—caught the light and shot sparks of multihued fire against the wall. “I hate that you’re upset and pissed off at me. It hurts me, too, Gideon. I don’t want him. I swear I don’t.”
We all know you don’t love Brett and that you don’t want to be with him but that you still think he’s hot. Who cares? Why are you even bringing this up to Gideon when nothing is going to come from this? Having someone from your past who you still find attractive but don’t actually want anymore because you’re in love with someone else is completely harmless and a massive non-issue.
Gideon continues to fret because, “I’d done everything I could. I had said the vows, slid the ring on her finger. Bound her to me in every way. Yet it still wasn’t enough.” Yeah, maybe getting married isn’t a magic panacea for everything wrong in your relationship. Just a thought.
Gideon feels like Brett is edging him out, and he’s haunted by that time Brett kissed Eva. According to Gideon she was kissing him with “desperation” which I do not recall at all and we were in Eva’s head.
Gideon continues to turn nastier and nastier and says maybe they should take a break and while Eva clears up her confusion with Brett, he’ll go to Corinne. I don’t even understand how Eva could find Gideon attractive anymore.
“Tell me how to handle this,” I said hoarsely, circling her wrists and exerting gentle pressure. “Tell me what to do.”
“Handle me, you mean?” Her shoulders went back. “Because I’m what’s wrong here. I knew Brett during a time in my life when I hated myself but wanted other people to love me. And now he’s acting the way I wanted him to back then and it’s giving me a head trip.”
“Christ, Eva.” I pressed harder, flattening my body against her. “How am I not supposed to feel threatened by that?”
“You’re supposed to trust me. I told you because I didn’t want you to get weird vibes and jump to conclusions. I wanted to be honest about it so you wouldn’t feel threatened. I know I’ve got some stuff to work out in my head. I’m going to see Dr. Travis this weekend and—”
“Shrinks aren’t a cure-all!”
Says the man who seems to believe that marriage is. [Matthew says: These books are like the mental health equivalent of anti-vaxxer children’s books.]
“You’re not listening.”
“Just stay the hell away from him.”
“That’s avoidance, not a solution.” [Matthew says: Not a recommended strategy for minefields.] Her fingers dug into my waist. “I’m broken, Gideon, you know that. I’m piecing myself back together.”
I loved her just the way she was. Why wasn’t that enough?
“Thanks to you I’m stronger than I’ve ever been,” she went on, “but there are still cracks, and when I find them, I have to figure out what made them and how to seal them up. Permanently.”
“What the fuck does that mean?”
Eva never does explain the fuck that means, unfortunately. Even though Gideon is pissing me off, I’m confused by what Eva even means here. [Matthew says: Actually, if there’s any advantage to seeing this story from both perspectives, it’s that we can really appreciate what terrible conversationalists these two are.] What cracks is she talking about? How is her way going to seal them up permanently? Oh my god how is this book more confusing than Allegiant.
Gideon quickly realizes that he needs to be more in control because that’s what Eva needs to be able to keep it together herself, so he uses their safe word.
She went lax in my arms. Her submission was total and swift. I had the upper hand again.
Man, I just can’t stop quoting how creepy Gideon is. From the man’s mind himself! How does Day not see how insane he is? [Matthew says: An actual line from Gideon’s narration in this scene is “She never gave me an inch unless my cock was inside her.” Guys. Guys. This is changing my entire perspective on Gideon.]
Gideon asks Eva to tell Brett she’s married, and it sounds like Eva was already planning to. Well, if that’s what she meant by permanently shutting this whole thing down, why the fuck didn’t she say so?
Eva and Gideon have a more pleasant ride to work, and he says nice things that make her go mushy and forget what a shit head he was earlier (that Corinne thing was fighting dirty). [Matthew says: Eva even takes in the wonderful majesty of New York City!
I’d stopped noticing it [but] Eva’s fascination and delight with my hometown had reintroduced it to me.
Aren’t they in, like, Midtown, though? The bland, characterless part that’s just offices and chain restaurants? This is like going to Disney World and being impressed by the vending machines.] Eva also tells him she needs time alone to tell Cary they’re married, because she doesn’t want him to feel like he’s on the outside of their lives. Except he is because they’re married and he’s not going to want to be the third wheel in their marriage when he has his own shit going on anyway. [Matthew says: Although it’s yet to be seen if Cary actually gets to have any shit going on in this book. Remember that Cary’s role in book 3 was “guy who Googles stuff”.]
Once at work, Gideon reminds us that he really wants Eva to work with him. “I was determined to get her on my team and working for me. It was an objective I strategized every day.” It’s pretty shameful that he strategizes every day, but his strategy boils down to just telling Eva he wants her to work with him.
The rest of the chapter is about Gideon meeting with his lawyer to talk about selling his “fuck pad” – that hotel room he owned where he fucked people. [Matthew says: Although this is done by Gideon selling the entire apartment building, because everything is a penis.] Apparently his rival wants to buy it for a low price…and then Gideon and his lawyer argue about that and other things his rival has done in the past. I have no idea if this dude will ever be mentioned again, but I think I’ve conveyed enough important information about him for you guys to get the gist.
My question today is more of a challenge. Can you find a more succinct and clear way to describe who Anne Lucas is? Please help. I’m getting concerned they’re going to add yet another minor character who is like her second cousin’s third fish’s first owner and then I’ll never be able to explain any of this ever again.