The complexities of Grey just keep forcing us to split these chapters! That or the stresses of reading lengthy chapters of drivel is just too torturous.
Grey: Friday, May 7, 2011
Christian has just received Ana’s email saying that she doesn’t like him. Christian accepts that Ana has seen that he is a nightmare to deal with and moves on with his life. The end! Of course what actually happens is that he asks why she doesn’t like him, and Ana says because he never stays with her.
Given it’s barely been two weeks since they went on their first date, ‘never’ seems like the wrong choice of words. Then again, pretty much every word in this book is the wrong choice, so at least it’s consistent?
This email gives Christian pause, and he reflects on Ana’s deep truth:
I told her that I didn’t sleep with anyone.
But today was a big day.
She graduated from college.
She said yes.
We went through all those soft limits that she knew nothing about. We fucked. I spanked her. We fucked again.
I can’t believe it didn’t hit me what a huge day this was. Like I knew they fucked and he spanked her, but they fucked AGAIN. I feel like I didn’t get that before, and quite frankly I’m a little embarrassed I didn’t realize Ana’s graduation wasn’t the biggest, most important thing that happened that day!
After realizing what a big day Ana has had what with the fucking and the spanking and the fucking again, he rushes over to her apartment. When he arrives, Kate is furious with him. I get that this is supposed to be Kate’s protective BFF moment, but it’s so over-the-top, and Christian just keeps comparing her to basically every supernatural creature he can think of.
“I’ve come to see Ana.”
“Well, you can’t!” Kavanagh stands with arms folded and legs braced in the doorway, like a gargoyle.
“You can’t come in here!” Kavanagh follows me, shrieking like a harpy, as I storm through the apartment to Ana’s bedroom.
This absolutely solidifies Christian’s pre-existing hatred of Kate.
Fuck you, Kavanaugh.
“Just holler if you need me,” Kate says to Ana, as if she were a child. “Grey,” she snaps, so I’m obliged to look at her. “You’re on my shit list, and I’m watching you.” She sounds shrill, her eyes glinting with fury, but I don’t give a fuck.
Wait. Wait. CHRISTIAN IS JUDGING KATE FOR TREATING ANA LIKE A CHILD???!?!? This from the man who is infantalizing her every chance he gets. In fact, what Kate has just offered is a very normal thing to say to someone of any age. And you know what, Christian kept judging Kate because she wasn’t a good enough friend to Ana (based on his nonexistent pile of evidence), but as soon as she’s protective of Ana he can’t stand her. Suddenly she’s this shrill harpy/gargoyle bitch.
Detective Christian says that he has a feeling Ana is upset because of what happened between them (the spanking. Big day!) He demands to know if Ana took Advil “as instructed” which is hilarious because he just bitched about Kate talking to Ana like a child.
Christian goes to get Ana some Advil and Kate is like, “Oh, you’re worried about Ana’s headache. Maybe I misjudged you.” She doesn’t say any of this but it’s all in her eyes basically.
Ana asks Christian why he liked hurting her, and he explains that he likes to have control and wants to punish her when she doesn’t act the way he wants her to. Ana rightfully asks why he wants to change her so much.
And I don’t want you rolling your eyes at me, or being sarcastic.
“I don’t want to change you.” God forbid. You’re enchanting. “I’d like you to be courteous and to follow the set of rules I’ve given you and not defy me. Simple.” I want you safe.
Call me crazy but wanting to change her penchant for sarcasm doesn’t seem to be an effective way to keep her safe unless you’re worried her sarcasm is going to affect her driving skills. We almost touch on something really interesting here, but of course the author/characters don’t pursue it. Christian absolutely doesn’t want to change Ana except that he does completely. Follow all my rules and stop thinking for yourself and always be “courteous” (even though I’m not). Christian actually reminds me a bit of Hannibal Lecter with his obsession with manners. “they were terrible rude, so I had to eat him for dinner.“
Christian asks Ana how she felt after the spanking and then proceeds to tell her how she feels:
“And you haven’t answered my question— how did you feel afterward?”
She blinks. “Confused.”
“You were sexually aroused by it, Anastasia.”
If there’s one thing people uniformly love it’s when someone else tells them what they’re thinking or feeling. Christian is like, ‘Well she was wet, so there’s no way she didn’t want it!” Which is a fucking terrible way of looking at things, because even people who are being raped can have a physical reaction that is not at all inline with their emotional reaction (EVEN CROSSFIRE FUCKING KNOWS THIS.) So to tell Ana how she is feeling because she was “wet” when she is telling you something completely different is terrible.
Christian tries to talk to Ana a little more, but quickly gives up and says that she should email him since she’s more comfortable communicating that way. He then asks to sleepover, and Ana displays more concern for what Christian wants in this situation than he ever does for her with their sexual relationship.
He growls at Ana to lie down because they need to sleep, damn it! And then he tells her that “If you are going to cry, cry in front of me. I need to know.” I don’t remember this line from the original book. The fuck? she can’t masturbate or cry on her own anymore? Ana, if you feel like you’re about to cry and I’m not around YOU MUST CONTROL YOURSELF.
That night Christian has a happy dream about running around with apples with Elliot and their grandfather. And then he wakes up smelling apples/Ana. I don’t know why Ana always smells like apples.
Christian and his cock agree that Ana is sexy, and he “teas[es] her with [his] favourite body part.” Fans, you can stop debating, it has finally been confirmed that Christian’s peen is his fav body part. Unfortunately, his favourite body part can’t be satisfied because Christian’s late for a video conference with Kate’s dad and other business folk.
I kept expecting him to be like, “Sir, I will never do business with you because your daughter is a shrieking harpy-banshee-gargoyle-wraith-phoenix-sphinx-troll from hell.” But he doesn’t. He barely pays attention to the meeting because he and Ana are emailing.
Again, I’m in the awkward position of having to recap emails that I’m 99.9% sure I recapped to you a years ago. The thing is, I barely remember these emails, so on the one hand I feel like I have to recap so we can all keep track of what’s happening. On the other hand, though, I’m like, “Whelp. I’m just gonna wind up pointing out the exact same problematic and stupid sentences all over again. Here we go!”
Remember all this? Ana says she did feel aroused but then felt shitty afterwards. One of Christian’s arguments to her well-articulated explanation is this:
Do you really feel like this or do you think you ought to feel like this? Two very different things. If that is how you feel, do you think you could just try to embrace these feelings, deal with them, for me? That’s what a submissive would do.
“I mean if you genuinely feel shitty about it can’t you just suck it up so I can keep putting my dick in you in a way that satisfies me?”
I do like that Christian tells her that she shouldn’t feel guilty for what they do behind closed doors, but I already feel like he is so dismissive of Ana’s points that I don’t think this redeems him at all. He does rightfully point out that she didn’t use the safe word, and fine, good point, but I’m surprised he doesn’t ask if she resisted using her safe word because she wants so badly to please and impress him. I feel like so many women do this, and I was super guilty of it in high school, saying yes to situations not because they actually felt good but because you think you should want them or you want other people to see you a certain way. Instead of sending Ana an email of counter-arguments about her fucking feelings, why not say, “Hey, why didn’t you use your safe word, were you not prepared to yet because you’ve had sex like twice and were confused?”
Then they just like joke and flirt about Christian being a stalker, which never actually becomes funny given the joke is just stating actual facts about who Christian is.
After the meeting winds down, Ros tries to tell Christian off for how distracted he was during the meeting. He actually mutes her before she can make that point to email Ana some more, and then he’s like, “Oh, shit, was it obvious I wasn’t paying attention.” Um, yes. He then tells Ros to look for publishing companies he can buy. Like everything else in this book, it’s all just creepier from Christian’s perspective, not more romantic
Christian heads to pick Mia up from the airport. He tells one of his minions to send Ana and Kate a housewarming gift, and thanks her when she sorts everything out. Apparently, this is fucking shocking to this poor woman who has worked for Christian for god knows how long and never received a thank you. Mercifully, this ends my portion of the chapter.
I left this out in the summary but there’s this really odd joke(???) that comes out of nowhere right before Christian gets on his conference call:
I open WebEx and Andrea is online, waiting for me. “Good morning, Mr. Grey. Mr. Kavanagh is delayed, but they’re ready for you in New York and here in Seattle.”
“Fred and Barney?” My Flintstones. I smirk at the thought.
Why do you think this was included in the story? Do you feel any differently about Christian since he made this totally hip pop culture ref?