Thursday, October 4, 2012

50 Shades of Grey Chapter 23

So, I'm starting this post with a drink in hand. There is no way that Grey is not about to drive me to drink after he's flown across the fucking country after a DAY to breath heavily on Ana specifically after he said he wouldn't. I mean, I'm sure he has some "legitimate" reason to be there. Some work related thing that, oh, whoops! Came up last minute and he didn't tell Ana because he was trying to stay away! Uh huh. And I can reach the top shelf*.

“Ana, what is it? You look like you’ve seen a ghost.”
“It’s Christian, he’s here.”
“What? Really?” She glances around the bar too.
I have neglected to mention Christian’s stalker tendencies to my mom.

I also neglect to mention to my Mother the really problematic things my dates do. Like lean in and breath real deep and shudder. Which you KNOW Grey does when Ana isn't looking. Also her Mother's response is about right, though I wish it was also heavy with "WHAT THE FUCK DAUGHTER?" but since her Mother thinks all men are the same, and two dimensional, she will instead insist that this is a romantic gesture, not a total lack of respect towards boundaries. I would like to remind you all that Ana has come to Georgia to visit her Mother because she wanted to get AWAY from Grey because she has a hard time thinking when he's around. He knew this. And came anyways.

He’s really here – for me. My inner goddess leaps up cheering from her chaise longue.

Hey, Ana's inner goddess, I heard someone tossed some Sex in the City DVDs onto the interstate! You should go grab them before someone else does! This is seriously the wrong response. Fear or shock would be what I'd have expected, myself. As Grey stalks through the crowd like some sort of animal Ana comments that he looks angry, and that she's still angry at him herself and not sure how to be around him at all right now, let alone in front of her Mother. I really hope Ana says something to the effect of "Sorry darling but it's girls night and I'll just have to see you when I get back to Seattle" which would 1) Reaffirm her boundaries, and that they matter, 2) Let Ana have time to cool down/sober up and 3) save me from the inevitable and painful wooing of her Mother.

“Mrs. Adams, I am delighted to meet you.”
How does he know her name? He gives her the heart-stopping, Christian Grey patented, full-blown-no-prisoners-taken smile. She doesn’t have a hope. My mother’s lower jaw practically hits the table. Jeez, get a grip Mom. She takes his proffered hand and they shake. My mother hasn’t replied. Oh, complete dumbfounded speechlessness is genetic – I had no idea.
“Christian,” she manages finally, breathlessly.
He smiles knowingly at her, his gray eyes twinkling.

See? I also want to know how Grey knows her name when I DIDN'T UNTIL JUST NOW! We now have proof that Grey is not only stalking Ana, he's at least doing some research on her family. That? That is NOT OKAY! THAT IS CREEPY EL JAMES! So fucking creepy. Like, I kind of want to take a shower just writing about this chapter creepy. The fact that he's basically seducing Ana's Mother with his black magic doesn't make it any better.

“I came to see you, of course.” He gazes down at me impassively. Oh, what is he thinking? ...
“Well, yesterday you said you wished I was here.” He pauses trying to gauge my reaction. “We aim to please, Miss Steele.” His voice is quiet with no trace of

Okay, I was wrong about him having a pretext for being there. So, Ana says she's fleeing the state to get away from him to think. In e-mailing fondly she mentions "I wish you were here!" in a way that you DO when you're away from your significant other on vacation. It's a thing you say, not necessarily a thing you mean. The fact that Grey took this literally, and didn't ask Ana, or tell her, is... Upsetting to me. He happened to bump into them. Was he going to stop by her Mother's place unannounced and then have to explain how he knew where that was?

“Well, I was going to pay you a visit tomorrow. But here you are.”
He reaches over, takes my hand, and squeezes it gently, running his thumb across my knuckles to and fro… and I feel the familiar pull. The electric charge zapping beneath my skin under the gentle pressure from his thumb, firing into my blood stream and pulsing around my body, heating everything in its path. It’s been over two days since I saw him. Oh my... I want him. My breath hitches. I blink at him, smiling shyly, and see a smile play on his beautiful, sculptured lips.

When I first read him taking her hand I thought it was kind of cute. I remembered the first boy I ever dated and I at the movies early in our relationship, and holding hands. His thumb dragging over my knuckles was a daring move and got me all fluttery. I don't even remember what movie it was, but I remember the way he held my hand to this day. And then Ana had to go and ruin that by getting lady-boners all over the damned place. Your Mom is right there dude!

I glance quickly at Mom who is staring at Christian… yes staring! Stop it Mom. As if he’s some exotic creature, never seen before. I mean, I know I’ve never had a boyfriend, and Christian only qualifies as such for ease of reference – but is it so unbelievable that I could attract a man? This man? Yes, frankly – look at him – my subconscious snaps. Oh, shut up! Who invited you to the party? I scowl at my mom – but she doesn’t seem to notice.

She doesn't notice because she's too busy being enthralled by his dark magic glamor. Also so much self loathing and doubt here. The fucker has stalked you across the country, can't you get even a little ego boost here Ana? You also think your Mom is thinking he's too good for you? Mom will never think your boyfriend is too good for you. MAYBE good enough, but never too good.

Grey pretends to be a decent human being and insists he won't stay long and Calra (Ana's Mom has a name now!) and Ana don't see each other much and he doesn't want to infringe, and so Carla insists on Grey joining them for dinner tomorrow and then is off to powder her nose or something so Grey and Ana can have a quickie. And by quickie I mean a fight.

“So, you’re mad at me for having dinner with an old friend.” Christian turns his burning, wary gaze to me, lifting my hand to his lips and kissing each knuckle gently.

This gesture is icky to me. I'm all for touching during fights. I will hug and hold hands with The Boy when we're fighting, but this feels manipulative. Grey KNOWS how affected Ana is by his touch, and he brings up something he knows she is upset about in a way that is meant to distract her. Maybe this is meant to be soothing, but it feels manipulative to me. So, Grey initiates the conversation, and insists that it "isn't like that! I only want you baby! Can't you see that? I stalked you all the way to Georgia!" and Ana, finally, calls him out on the fact that MRS. ROBINSON IS A FUCKING CHILD MOLESTER!

“That’s very judgmental. It wasn’t like that,” he whispers, shocked. He releases my hand.
“Oh, how was it then?” I ask. The Cosmos are making me brave.
He frowns at me, bewildered. I continue.
“She took advantage of a vulnerable fifteen-year-old boy. If you had been a fifteen-year-old girl and Mrs. Robinson was a Mr. Robinson, tempting you into a BDSM lifestyle, that would have been okay? If it was Mia, say?”
He gasps and scowls at me.
“Ana, it wasn’t like that.”

I glare at him.

I love this. Ana is calling him out on this, and doing it in a way he isn't able to really back peddle out of, the the text isn't magically letting him smooth talk his way out of it. Almost like he's able to be wrong or something! Wait, forgot what I was reading here.

“Okay, it didn’t feel like that to me,” he continues quietly. “She was a force for good. What I needed.”
“I don’t understand.” It’s my turn to look bewildered.
“Anastasia, your mother will be back shortly. I’m not comfortable talking about this now. Later maybe.

Grey realizes he can't win this one with logic, so he says something cryptic, and despite being the one to open the can of worms, he slams it shut when he realizes he doesn't have control over the conversation. Ana had already called Mrs. R a child molester, so he had to know that was coming, right? Ana not taking his cryptic response at bay, he instead offers to leave Georgia.

He’s angry with me… no.
“No – don’t go. Please. I’m thrilled you’re here.

So after ending a conversation he started, he gets terse so Ana will back peddle, knowing to fear his moods and anger. ADJHRFG. Ana DOES however stand by the fact that what he did was upsetting. She left and he rushed to Mrs. R's side! She tries to make Grey understand by using Jose as an example. Rather then skin Ana for muttering "The Photographer's" name, he sees the conversation has twisted into a way that works for him again.

“You’re jealous?” He stares at me, dumbfounded, and his eyes soften slightly, warming.
“Yes, and angry about what she did to you.”
“Anastasia, she helped me, that’s all I’ll say about that. And as for your jealousy, put yourself in my shoes. I haven’t had to justify my actions to anyone in the last seven years. Not one person. I do as I wish, Anastasia. I like my autonomy. I didn’t go and see Mrs. Robinson to upset you. I went because every now and then we have dinner. She’s a friend and a business partner.”

So, Grey is saying "I'm sorry I'm an inconsiderate prick-hole but Mrs. R HELPED me by teaching me HOW to become an inconsiderate prick-hole! Can't you see how that's a good thing? Also she's my business partner" Wait, WHAT? Grey uses this as PROOF that there is nothing going on between them. "See? We're coworkers, the sex has been over for aaaages! We've been too busy working! People never hook up with co-workers!" and then... Oh god, this conversation just... It doesn't make sense, you guys. Ana once again is acting like an alien. 

“Why did your relationship finish?”
His mouth narrows, and his eyes gleam.
“Her husband found out.”
Holy shit!
“Can we talk about this some other time – somewhere more private?” he growls.
“I don’t think you’ll ever convince me that she’s not some kind of paedophile.”
“I don’t think of her that way. I never have. Now that’s enough!” he snaps.
“Did you love her?”

Ana, what the hell? One topic at a time. No one does this. I mean, I get that Ana has Questions. Lots of them. I do not get how she hardly gets an answer for one before she rushes on to the next. At least she isn't asking him why she can't touch him this time. What irks me the most is Grey insists "No, it wasn't pedophilia." and Ana's response was to ask if he loved her. LOL WHAT? Naturally her Mother returns RIGHT THEN AND THERE so that Grey can't answer (I like to think his answer would be to bop Ana on the head with a rolled up news paper and scream "NO! BAD!" but that's mostly because I want to hit her with a rolled up newspaper).

Did he love her? I think if he did, I will lose it, big time.

I get that being jealous is supposed to be Ana's "thing" but COME ON! YOU ARE NOT THE FIRST WOMAN HE HAS EVER MET! Are you SO insecure that the thought of him having been with, and cared about, a woman before you will drive you to "lose it big time" or is it that you honestly think Mrs. R abused and molested him and you're angry about him having potentially loved someone who abused him? If nothing else, you need to stop and listen to what he's saying. He is telling you 1) He doesn't want to talk about it, 2) He wasn't scarred by it 3) He has gone as far to say that he was HELPED by her actions. Ana can disagree. She can not like it, but she really needs to listen to what Grey is telling her for a change. He at least listens when she gets over herself long enough to voice her rage concerns. 

So Grey leaves Ana to her Mother, and naturally the text needs to remind Ana (and the reader) how perfect and wonderful Grey is.

“Ana, you came here because you’re confused about that boy. It’s obvious you two are crazy about each other. You need to talk to him. He’s just flown three thousand odd miles to see you, for heaven’s sake. And you know how awful it is to fly.”

Ana insists that she came to visit her Mother, and her Mother brushes this off because THEY MUST TALK TO WORK THROUGH THEIR PROBLEMS! Well, that is true, Carla, but you talk in clichees and it hurts me.

“Ana, honey, you’ve always had a tendency to over-analyze everything. Go with your gut. What does that tell you, sweetheart?”
I stare at my fingers.
“I think I’m in love with him,” I mutter.
“I know darling. And he with you.”
“Yes, Ana. Hell – what do you need? A neon sign flashing on his forehead?”

So Ana's Mother tells her Grey loves her. Kate has also basically said this. I hate how Grey is so emotionally constipated in EL James' head that she needs TEH WIMMINZ to tell Ana how Grey REALLY feels because he can't tell her himself! Calra then orders her daughter to go up to his room and have sex (but use a condom!) and I have mixed feelings on that. On one hand, I think it's great that her Mother is being so comfortable with her daughter having sex and relationships and treating her like a big girl, on the other... Being told by your Mom to go bang your boyfriend is weird no matter how you look at it.

So Ana goes to his room. He's on the phone doing Business Dude things. Once he's off she insists to know if he loved Mrs. R (he doesn't) and then they leap RIGHT into the "playful" banter. He teases her for being jealous, she teases him for teasing her... It's all very trite. Despite the fact that Ana went to have a SRS CONVERSATION they jump right into foreplay but Grey somehow magically knows Ana is on her period. Huh? The only reason The Boy has any idea when I'm bleedy is because, well, he's been with me three years, living with me for one of them. He knows the signs. He knows that I'm wiped and lethargic and cranky and in a great deal of pain. He also knows when my last one was, which gives him a frame of reference. He gets flashing neon signs leading up to the event as well as having a rough time frame. He can science that bitch. Grey just... knows.

“I want you,” he breathes.
I moan and reach up and grasp his arms.
“Are you bleeding?” He continues to kiss me.
Holy Fuck. Does nothing slip by him?
“Yes,” I whisper, embarrassed.

I suppose she could have mentioned when she was due, or he could have figured if they've been screwing for about a month and she hadn't had her period she was due, but, as I said before, uterus are strange and magical things. Neither are periods. No two are alike, often even for the same woman. I discovered this month I get fucking kidney pain with mine now sometimes. What the hell uterus? So, if Grey was keeping track of Ana's potential menstruation on a calendar, there would be little to no guarantee that she would be bleeding on those days because SHOCK! Most women don't menstruate like clock work! Not unless they are already on the pill or something of the like. Which he also has no way of knowing.

His response, thankfully, isn't "YES BLOW JOB WEEK!"** but rather "BATH TIME!" and he leads her to an elaborate sounding bathroom.

He takes me into the bathroom which is two rooms, all aquamarines and white limestone. It’s huge – In the second room a sunken bath, big enough for four people with stone steps that lead into it, is slowly filling with water. Steam rises gently above the foam, and I notice a stone seat all the way round. Candles flicker to the side. Wow… he’s done all this while on the phone.

Again, I don't imagine I stay at the same kind of hotels as Grey, but I don't think most rooms have magical spa bathrooms. Also where did he get the candles from? And how did he do all this with one hand? He was on the phone while he did this. And WOW that is presumptuous of you, Grey. Ana turns up, you know she's pissed at you, and it's reasonable that she came to finish the conversation. He however, despite being suspicious of her bleeding (which is grounds for not being in the mood) and having grounds for suspecting that she is upset with him one handed starts to set The Mood.

So, they get ready to start banging. Grey orders her to tie her hair up and then we get proof EL James doesn't have proof readers.

He leans over and shuts off the faucet. leadingL me back into the first part of the bathroom,he stands behind me as we face the wall-sized mirror above the two glass sinks.

I didn't touch that. Just copy pasted. I do not look forward to the next book.

“Look at you. You are so beautiful,” he murmurs. “See how you feel.” He clasps both my hands in his, his palms against the backs of my hands, his fingers in between mine so that my fingers are splayed. He places my hands on my belly. “Feel how soft your skin is.” His voice is soft and low. He moves my hands in a slow circle then upwards towards my breasts. “Feel how full your breasts are.” He holds my hands so that they cup my breasts. He gently strokes my nipples with his thumbs over and over.

I was about to start ranting about how I'm sure she's already done all this while going to town on herself but remembered Ana is an alien who has never ever masturbated. Carry on.

I watch in fascination at the wanton creature writhing in front of me. Oh this feels good. I groan and close my eyes, no longer wanting to see that libidinous woman in the mirror falling apart under her own hands… his hands… feeling my skin as he would, experiencing how arousing it is – just his touch, and his calm, soft, commands.

OH LOOK GUYS ANA IS HAVING A SEXUAL AWAKENING! CHECK THIS SHIT! She's only so into this because she's such a sexy special snowflake. I picture Ana in the mirror being all "Oh, who IS that sexy beast? Rawr baby."

Truly I am a marionette and he is the master puppeteer.

Right, because puppets are sexy, not inherently creepy.

“Carry on,” he orders, and stands back watching me.
I rub myself. No. I want him, him to do it. It doesn’t feel the same. I’m lost without him.

Ana is apparently so helpless she can't even get herself riled up without help. It's okay, Grey is there to save the day!

He stops abruptly and spins me around, circling my wrists with one hand, imprisoning my hands behind me, and pulling at my ponytail with the other. I am flush against him, and he kisses me wildly, ravaging my mouth with his. Holding, h me in place.

Again, I've got the e-book, that shit is copy pasted. Typo and all. I'm stumped as to what's going on here. He manages to get both wrists, which are in front of her, with one hand. Okay, I guess he did have his hands on hers as he was making her touch herself, but, how did he get them behind her? And what does her ponytail have to do with it? Is she facing him, or kissing him over her shoulder?

He reaches between my legs and pulls on the blue string… what! And… a gently pulls my tampon out and tosses it into the nearby toilet. Holy fuck. Sweet mother of all… Jeez.

NO THANK YOU MR. GREY I CAN TAKE CARE OF THAT MYSELF. Also surprised at his aim here. I always miss when I play tampon basketball and end up having to wipe blood off of the back of the toilet. On the upside, at least I get the rebound shot.*** Usually.

Grey is about to go bareback, so lets see what Ana has to say about that!

Skin against skin… moving slowly at first… easily, testing me, pushing me… oh my.

Fun fact- You can still get pregnant when you're on your period. One Grey doesn't seem to know about, that or he's playing the odds. Also according to Ana bareback sex is just about the same as condom sex. That's been about my experience, too, but I hear it's different for the penis-haver in these situations. I would also like to reiterate that Grey is going bare-back when Ana is bleeding because he thinks he can't knock her up. Ana is a virgin, and Grey claims to have been tested/clean since his last partner. Still, you can be a carrier for a lot of things, and since Ana hasn't been tested, shoving his dick IN HER BLOOD seems like a really bad idea.

Whoa… and I come, loudly, gripping for dear life onto the sink as I spiral down through my orgasm, everything spinning and clenching at once. He follows, clasping me tightly, his front on my back as he climaxes and calls my name like it’s a litany or a prayer.

I feel we've gotten these descriptors already. EL JAMES I DEMAND MORE CREATIVITY ON YOUR PART!

“Oh, baby, will I ever get enough of you?” he whispers.
Will it always be like this? So overwhelming, so all-consuming, so bewildering and beguiling. I wanted to talk, but now I’m spent and dazed from his lovemaking and wondering if I will ever get enough of him?

My liver hates you EL James. It hates you so much.

I remember that I have my period.
“I’m bleeding,” I murmur.
“Doesn’t bother me,” he breathes.
“I noticed.” I can’t keep the dryness out of my voice.
He tenses slightly.
“Does it bother you?” he asks softly.
Does it bother me? Maybe it should… should it? No, it doesn’t. I lean back and look up at him, and he gazes down at me, his eyes a soft cloudy gray.
“No, not at all.”

You forgot that you were bleeding all over the place? Doesn't it look like he just tried to murder you with his dick? They then get ready to hop in the tub, but first- Drama!

As he does, I notice again the small, round, white scars on his chest. They are not chicken pox, I muse absentmindedly. Grace said he was hardly affected. Holy shit… they must be burns. Burns from what? I blanch at the realization, shock and revulsion coursing through me. From cigarettes? Mrs. Robinson, his birth mother, who? Who did this to him? Maybe there’s a reasonable explanation, and I’m over-reacting – wild hope blossoms in my chest – hope that I am wrong.

Grey notices that Ana is suddenly FREAKING OUT and reacts reasonably. She simply tells him his scars aren't from chicken pox. Dear god, Ana. Tact. Get some.

“Don’t look at me like that.” His voice is colder and scolding as he lets go of my hand.
I flush, chastened, and stare down at my fingers, and I know, I know that someone stubbed cigarettes out on Christian. I feel sick.

I'd be pretty freaked out if I found out my SO had had someone abuse them like this, Ana naturally thinks it's Mrs. R.

“She? Mrs. Robinson? She’s not an animal, Anastasia. Of course she didn’t. I don’t understand why you feel you have to demonize her.”


He’s standing there, naked, gloriously naked, with my blood on him… and we’re finally having this conversation. And I’m naked too – neither of us has anywhere to hide, except perhaps the bath.

Really? You had to point out that you've marked him as your own by bleeding on him here? And how EXPOSED you both are, emotionally and physically? Arrrkgfiuoaehtkjnhirnhksjdbna9eru. Kbhr. Pffjehg. Ana then scampers into the tub because it is the only place to hide and deflects Grey's question (which, admittedly, she's already answered earlier by saying she thinks the woman is a fucking child molester) and meekly wonders what Grey would be like if Mrs. R hadn't introduced him to BDSM.

“I would probably have gone the way of my birth mother, had it not been for Mrs. Robinson.”
Oh! I blink at him. Crack addict or whore? Possibly both?

Really? The Greys wouldn't have done something like an intervention or stuck your under aged ass in therapy or any number of things? You know, his doctor parents? No, it was Mrs. R loving him in a way he finds "acceptable" what ever the fuck that means that saved him from that path!

“Yes.” He stares intently at me. “She distracted me from the destructive path I found myself following. It’s very hard to grow up in a perfect family when you’re not perfect.”

OH POOR BABY BEING RAISED IN A FAMILY THAT IS GOING TO DO EVERYTHING TO HELP YOU BE A HAPPY HEALTHY PERSON! Seriously, privileged prick. All it took were some tits to "distract" him from his path. He then tells us that he hasn't talked to anyone but his shrink about this and is only talking to Ana about it because he wants her to trust him. I've got mixed feelings on this. On one hand, I like that Grey is trying to reassure Ana to protect one of the few people he has an emotional attachment to as to just ditching his friend in the name of some sweet snatch. On the other, I hate that the text is dismissing what is statutory-rape. Think EL James donates to NMBLA too?

“I do trust you, but I do want to know you better, and whenever I try to talk to you, you distract me. There’s so much I want to know.”
“Oh for pity’s sake, Anastasia. What do you want to know? What do I have to do?” His eyes blaze, and though he doesn’t raise his voice, I know he’s trying to rein in his temper.

Jesus fuck Ana. I'm with Grey on this one. He has made HUGE steps in talking to you, sharing about himself. You just keep demanding moremoremore. It is one thing to ask, it is another to press. You, Ana, are pressing. It shows a very base disrespect for boundaries. Which considering how huffy she gets when Ana has decided her own boundaries have been crossed is painful.

“I’m just trying to understand, you’re such an enigma. Unlike anyone I’ve met before. I’m glad you’re telling me what I want to know.”
Jeez – maybe it’s the Cosmopolitans making me brave, but suddenly I cannot bear the distance between us.

Is Ana not supposed to touch him, or just his chest? I'm honestly unclear about this rule. So Ana snuggles in and Grey, exasperated, explains that he isn't used to talking like this. He only talks to his shrink and Mrs. R. Ana behaves herself by not frothing at the mouth that he has an emotional relationship with this woman and she isn't the most special snowflake ever. Ana presses about what Grey talks to her about, and is upset to learn she is on the list.

“And you take advice from Mrs. Paedo?” I snap. The hold on my temper is more tentative than I thought.
“Anastasia – enough,” he snaps back sternly, his eyes narrowing.
I’m skating on thin ice, and I’m heading into danger. “Or I’ll put you across my knee. I have no sexual or romantic interest in her whatsoever. She’s a dear, valued friend and a business partner. That’s all. We have a past, a shared history, which was monumentally beneficial for me, though it fucked up her marriage – but that side of our relationship is over.”

Okay, deep breath. I first need to point out the obvious. The threat of "drop it or I will hit you" yes, Ana is being pushy and disrespectful and not handling this even a little bit well, but she is allowed to ask about his ex, and his relationship with her, and is allowed to be upset and confused about it considering how... dramatic, it is. I just hate them both SO MUCH right now. Grey is ignoring the fact that this woman had an affair for him. He is asking Ana to ignore that fact, and ignore the implications of it. These are not small things to ask, but he expects them, and expects them with a meek smile. This could be playing up what a controlling bastard he is, but honestly? I think we're supposed to side with him, and I just... I can't. I don't agree with Ana's approach, but these are "Deal Breaker" type things, and she is allowed to try and figure it out so she can make an informed decision.

“And your parents never found out?”
“No,” he growls. “I’ve told you this.”
And I know that’s it. I cannot ask him any further questions about her because he will lose it with me.
“Are you done?” he snaps.
“For now.”

Grey relaxes, and now we're onto softer, squishier subjects. Like the big e-mail he sent that she never sent a proper reply to.

“I was going to respond. But now you’re here.”
“You’d rather I wasn’t?” he breathes, his expression impassive again.
“No, I’m pleased,” I murmur.
“Good.” He gives me a genuine, relieved smile. “I’m pleased I’m here too – in spite of your interrogation. So, while it’s acceptable to grill me, you think you can claim some kind of diplomatic immunity just because I’ve flown all this way to see you? I’m not buying it, Miss Steele. I want to know how you feel.”

She feels pretty good about him having gone to SUCH EFFORTS to see her. Want to know what makes a romantic gesture LESS romantic? Talking about what a big deal it is. So Grey starts to ask her about their potential arrangement and Ana admits she doesn't think she can be a good submissive. Grey agrees, and then... *Sigh*

“Was it that bad when I spanked you the first time?”
I gaze back at him, blinking. Was it that bad? I remember feeling confused by my reaction. It hurt, but not that much in retrospect. He’s said over and over again it’s more in my head. And the second time… Well, that was good… hot.
“No, not really,” I whisper.
“It’s more the idea of it?” he prompts.
“I suppose. Feeling pleasure, when one isn’t supposed to.”
“I remember feeling the same. Takes a while to get your head around it.”

THANKS FOR LETTING ME KNOW THAT PEOPLE DON'T LIKE BEING SPANKED BECAUSE SOCIETY TELLS THEM THEY DON'T AND NOT BECAUSE THERE BODIES ARE TELLING THEM THEY DON'T! It's easy to say this once Ana has had time and space to rewrite the event in her head, but you know what? I read that chapter. I got the play by play from her point of view, and I found it upsetting and fucked up. Ana WAS that traumatized, and it bothers me that the text is going to try to gas light her, and us, about it. 

Ana then asks why he wants to control her, and...

“Because it satisfies a need in me that wasn’t met in my formative years.”

Show of hands, who remembers shit from when they were four? Because I don't and I really wish EL James had made Grey just a little bit older before pulling the "All his issues are from his tragic childhood" card. Nine I could have wrapped my head around. Six I would have been skeptical, but I could have seen it. Four? To this level? In these ways? Not so much.

“But, here’s the thing – one moment you say don’t defy me, the next you say you like to be challenged. That’s a very fine line to tread successfully.”
He gazes at me for a moment, then frowns.
“I can see that. But you seem to be doing fine so far.”

DOUCHE BAG. Ana points out that it makes her anxious and Grey deflects this and then they start fucking. No, really, it's... Almost instant. They make out a little and then with almost no foreplay Grey releases a mighty thrust with a scream of "FOR GLORY!" Okay, maybe I changed that in my head a little, but only a little.

“Please let my hands go,” I whisper.
“Don’t touch me,” he pleads, and releasing my wrists, he grabs my hips.

This is so fucking sad. How is she supposed to balance during all these sexual acrobatics if she can't brace on you dude? She just clings to the bathtub ledge before molesting his hair, because even though he asked not to be touched he's been okay with that one before, so it should still be fine, right?

We are wet mouths and tongues, tangled hair, and moving hips.

Mental image of floating disembodies bits summoned. Seriously, it would not take a lot of editing to turn this book into a Lovecraftian horror.

And the water… it’s swirling around us, our own whirlpool, a stirring vortex as our movements become more frantic… sloshing everywhere, mirroring what’s happening inside me… and I just don’t care.

RUN ON SENTENCES YAY! Also is Grey's dick being shredded by Ana's vortex vagina?

I love this man. I love his passion, the effect I have on him. I love that he’s flown so far to see me. I love that he cares about me… he cares. It’s so unexpected, so fulfilling. He is mine, and I am his.
“That’s right, baby,” he breathes.

ALL OF THE HATE! ALL OF IT FOREVER! Seriously?! "That's right baby" JUST AS ANA THINKS THAT I HATE DSFKGJNHAEORIHet4wjgeaf! So naturally they both have explosive earth shattering orgasms and then are in bed, naked, not snuggling, and talking. This is going to be all banter, isn't it?

“This will shock you, Anastasia. Ready?”
I nod, wide-eyed, still with the stupid grin on my face.
“All submissives in training, when I was training. There are places in and around Seattle that one can go and practice. Learn to do what I do,” he says.
“Oh.” I blink at him.
“Yep, I’ve paid for sex, Anastasia.”
“That’s nothing to be proud of,” I mutter haughtily.

I actually like that Grey has paid for sex. I like that he sought out people who knew what they were doing, so he could learn and practice in a "safe" way. I like that despite being Mr. Rich Fancy Pants he wasn't "too good" to pay for sex. I don't like Ana's response. It dehumanizes sex workers and know what? They're people with jobs. Now, I won't pretend there are not some very serious issues with sex work (you know, things like people being forced into it etc) but Ana is not taking the stance of "It is a problematic industry" and taking the "whores are icky and shameful" stance. They're not. Fuck yourself.

Grey declares that he wants to do something for Ana tomorrow "A surprise" unlike turning up in another fucking state which was totally expected. So, more "cute" banter/bonding, and then, this.

And in this quiet moment, as I close my eyes, spent and sated, I think I’m in the eye of the storm. And in spite of all he’s said, and what he hasn’t said, I don’t think I have ever been so happy.


Till next week, dear readers. Comments make me want to stab things less! So you should leave those because I don't think they'll let me blog from prison.

*I can not as I am a tiny person. "Too little for life" as The Boy always says. He also tells me there are unicorns up there but they run away when they hear chairs and are afraid of short people and can't come down from the top shelf as they can't survive without Top Shelfium, which naturally only exists on the top shelf. Man, I'm so jealous of you tall people.
** To whoever coined that phrase: You suck. I know not all women spend the week nearly crippled, but come on! Unless you're willing to ride the crimson tide, don't expect her to slobber on your dick.
***I just grossed myself out a little.


  1. What bugs me most about the period sex is that he throws the tampon in the toilet. Of course, he doesn't go to the ladies room, so I assume he isn't constantly confronted with DON'T THROW IT INTO THE TOILET signs, but still.

    Also, what's with the full breasts? She keeps saying how she's skinny and scrawny. This should come with small breasts. It's okay, I have small breasts too, nothing to be ashamed of. But of course, given that Ana is a bombshell, she probably has 90-60-90 measurements instead of being a flat board with no hips. Maybe it's because I'm not a native speaker, but full breasts generally means big breasts, right? Not necessarily DD, but at least C.

    1. I've only recently gained a bit more weight and probably am not super skinny like I used to be... but my very first bra was a C cup and then I went straight to double-d. And the rest of me was still scrawny.

      Hell even now I just got my bra professionally fitted and I'm an 8F (30F in USA-sizes).

      So yeah? Maybe she's just skinny with as you say, C or D boobs? Isn't that the "fantasy" anyway?

      Guess we have to keep waiting for the day that anyone other than skinny-with-boobs can be hot :|

  2. So, if Grey was keeping track of Ana's potential menstruation on a calendar, there would be little to no guarantee that she would be bleeding on those days because SHOCK! Most women don't menstruate like clock work!

    I can accept easily enough that she's one of the ones who is pretty well clockwork and Grey was lucky in that respect. Probably because I am too, so that's what I have experience with. (Although, it's set in May, isn't it? May's had a leap week the past two years, but that could be a coincidence.)

    My mom gave me a necklace as a menarche present and I never bother wearing jewellery unless I can make it meaningful, so I wear it when menstruating and only then. I suppose, given the amount of detail in Grey-containing scenes, if Ana had a similar symbol and told him about it we'd know.

    I watch in fascination at the wanton creature writhing in front of me. Oh this feels good. I groan and close my eyes, no longer wanting to see that libidinous woman in the mirror falling apart under her own hands… his hands… feeling my skin as he would, experiencing how arousing it is – just his touch, and his calm, soft, commands.

    She can feel arousal while menstruating? Huh. Is that common?

    He reaches between my legs and pulls on the blue string… what! And… a gently pulls my tampon out and tosses it into the nearby toilet.

    Blue? Since when?

    Anon: he doesn't go to the ladies room, so I assume he isn't constantly confronted with DON'T THROW IT INTO THE TOILET signs

    What signs? I don't think anyone or anything ever told me not to flush tampons down the toilet. Plastic applicators, yes, but not the tampons themselves. Everything I've ever read or heard that mentioned the flushability of tampons said that you can.

    1. (I'm the anon)

      Well, where I live, tampons aren't sold with plastic applicators, so I'm sure it applies to the tampons themselves. There's even signs on he box itself that you shouldn't flush them. I mean, unlike toilet paper, they don't dissolve, so after flushing a couple of them, shouldn't the toilet get clogged?

    2. Where I live (Australia) tampons are flushable but there are signs in public toilets asking you not to flush them. Because a few a day for a week won't be a problem but large numbers of them could be bad.

      Also they frequently have blue strings, but not always.

      ALSO ALSO I am a data point of one but unless the pain from cramps gets in the way (which also applies to pain from anywhere) menstruation doesn't rule out arousal for me! I never thought that wasn't normal!

    3. what I want to know is why christian didn't anticipate the possibility that when he plucked the tampon out that a jettison stream of blood wouldn't follow. Sometimes that shit doesn't absorb nearly as well as it corks.

  3. All I can think about is how that swirling vortex of sexybathtimes must look like a Swirling Vortex of Blood and Doom, which kinda groses me out. At the very least, the bathwate must be vaguely pinkish, and I'm not sure how clean I would feel after essentially bathing in my own (or anyone else's) blood.


    I totally just grossed myself out.

  4. Okay... I had to skip reading the details on the period sex part to avoid up-chucking my oatmeal onto my keyboard. I'm well aware that many people see menstruation as no hindrance to their sex life. Personally the idea of sexy-times when my aunt flo is in town disgusts me. I'm honestly all for 'blow job week' or hand job week or whatever because there's no way in hell my pants are coming off. I'm not everybody, but I would assume I'm in some kind of norm in not wanting the nitty-gritty details of period sex in my erotica. A blurb about "things in the bedroom continued as normal during my period; we just had to put down the red towels" would be one thing. But this: a bucket for the mademoiselle!

  5. Him knowing about her period is simply because he was a vampire in the original story, so he could smell the blood. It was still completely unnecessary as a scene. I'll admit I was grossed out a little bit. (And it keeps reminding me of Lestat, who liked that kind of blood a little too much.) And there is absolutely nothing sexy about a guy yanking a tampon out of a girl. Who the fuck comes up with that?

    Alright, I'm furious again. I hate Ana so much. Maybe I fell into the trap and put all my hatred on Ana so I wouldn't hate Grey so much anymore? I do hate him and there is seriously something wrong with him, but Ana is so so much worse.

    It scares me that, because this is Twilight, you can already know what will happen in the next few chapters/books...

    This makes absolutely no sense, how did it get so popular? I tried debating this with a co-worker before, who I actually like, and while she was agreeing on the funny/stupid stuff with me, she still said that she enjoyed the "love story". I don't get it......

    1. Marry me, Milou. lol

      But no, seriously? I hate her so much too. And yanking a tampon out isn't sexy even on a "he's taking control" level.

  6. ...this chapter makes less sense than usual. I realize it's supposed to be sexy that he doesn't mind the bleeding, but I don't think that Ana would experience it in basically the same manner as non-period sex. Also, creepy stalker Grey can't stand to have Ana outside of his control for any amount of time. That's bad. His black magic charm will also likely make it easier for him to deflect any later criticism about his methods, because Calra just won't believe it.

    This story sounds more and more like a girl being recruited for a cult headed by a man with demonic powers.

    @Anon in #1: "full" is usually more a measure of roundness and spheroid-ness to breasts rather than absolute size, in my experience. But yes, anyone under C cup is probably not going to get a "full" description.

  7. So I've just started reading this blog after a recommendation from my sister and boy I am super glad that I'm not trying to read this book myself!

    But the "having sex while on period" thing is actually the first part of the book that I have actually thought was mildly neat? I don't think I have ever read about period!sex before? It's always "wait until next week" which never seemed realistic to me. Like... people actually just wait that out?

    1. I take no issue with period sex, but I don't feel this is a realistic description of it. It usually involves a shower just before, during, or after, for starters. Or anal. Which has most of the same shower rules.

      There are some women who actually enjoy it more than rest-of-the-month sex because things are a lot more sensitive and wet down there. Some women are just in agony for a week so the thought of sex makes them want to set themselves (and maybe their partner for asking) on fire and some guys are just too grossed out by it to want to go anywhere near it. It is very much one of those case dependent things.

    2. I've found that sex during period week can calm cramps (put a towel down, yknow?). We don't do it too often anymore just because he teaches at night lately (he's a naval instructor for the Navy) and we have a 2 year old son who just sucks the life out of me most days.
      So nowadays it's in the shower after thoroughly assuring my husband that he's not going to slip and fall and break his neck because I'm continually replacing the no-slip daisies.

  8. And without getting too gross about it, menstrual fluid is not the same as vaginal lubrication. Yes, it's also a fluid, but it is (in my experience) much less lubricating (unless you're in the heavy flow stage, at which point I never wanted to have sex), so that's something to consider when you're doing PIV sex during your period. Not that this is a factor for our wonder orgasm girl, of course.

  9. considering all the questions and dialogue in this chapter, I'm surprised there's no lame ass Spanish inquisition reference.

  10. I actually remember a lot of things from before age 4, and traumatic memories tend to be different than regular ones, they etch themselves into your brain. The first 3 years of a person's life a really important because that's when their brain is forming and learning basic stuff about how the world works. Being neglected in babyhood can have lasting effects even though you won't remember the babyhood. But it's nothing a good therapist can't fix.

  11. You know you shouldn't throw tampons in the toilet, because it will get clogged, right? Other than that, awesome re-cap!

  12. Strawberry_Pocky_MooseJuly 22, 2013 at 8:32 PM

    *raises hand*

    Same. Dunno how they're made in other countries, but in the UK we're taught very explicitly to never flush tampons. They clog, yo.

  13. Strawberry_Pocky_MooseJuly 22, 2013 at 8:34 PM

    I've heard some women on their period can go from super-horny to 'don't you fucking touch me I'm in agony' in minutes.

    I was glad to hear this, because I'm totally one of those women.

  14. "I actually like that Grey has paid for sex. I like that he sought out
    people who knew what they were doing, so he could learn and practice in a
    "safe" way."

    Unfortunately, it ends up saying worse about Christian. Because it would mean he has learned how to do this safely, but is actively choosing to do it in an unsafe way for Ana.

  15. alice in wonderlandOctober 31, 2013 at 4:02 PM

    u should totally do this for the next book!

  16. "Did he love her? I think if he did, I will lose it, big time."
    I would be upset if Grey loved Mrs. Robinson as well, but of another reason. I would be upset that he fell in love with a woman who molested him when he was a child.

  17. Hi there.

    I know I am rather absurdly late to this discussion, and it is entirely possible that no one will ever see this, On the off-chance you do, Erika, I have some things to point out.

    For all the (many, many, many, anger-inducing) problems I have with this (sorry excuse for fanfiction, much less a) book, which you do an awfully good job of breaking down, Grey being traumatized my early childhood is not one of them. Attachment disorder ( is a very serious thing that can affect a person rather dramatically if they are neglected or not properly cared for (not to even speak of active abuse) as a young child well before the age of four. So even if he does not actually *remember* any abuse or neglect from before he was adopted, it could still leave substantial scars on his emotional and social development.

    That being said, the *physical* scars (See what I did there? With the transition? Yay!) show some sort of active abuse that he could certainly remember at three or four. I remember my grandmother's funeral which happened when i was two, and that is a far less traumatic event than being burned with cigarettes.

    Anyway, to summarize this rant: I hate this book as much as the next person, but I think you should be aware of the effects of abuse and neglect at an early age and maybe stop picking on that particular thing. God knows there are more than enough features of this book that deserve all the snark you can muster.

  18. I like this summary. Thanks much!
    Just 2 things in this chapter I have to point oUt.
    1. We're assuming that condoms aren't nessesary anymore because she saw the gyno a few chapters back. My understanding is that most pills take like a month to protect you properly, but she probably has magic pills because Grey is rich... something like that.
    2. Traumatic experiences when you're young tend to sharpen early memories up. My mother died when I was 5 and I remember much more if my childhood (thankfully, cause how else would I know my lovely mother) than the majority of my peers. Memory is a strange thing, don't nark it.