Caitlin Liveblogs Fifty Shades Freed: Chapter 19

[disclaimer: I don’t own any of the gifs used in this post. If you see a gif that you created and would either like credit for it or would like it taken down, please let me know.]

It’s been so long since I updated that the entire WordPress update page looks insane to me now. To be fair, this is entirely my fault.

HAVING A FULL-TIME JOB IS HARD AND I’M TERRIBLE AT UPDATES, AS YOU ARE ALL AWARE.

But here I am again! Ready to do another chapter! I even just opened a new beer in honor of doing this, because lord knows I’m not capable of doing this sober!

So, without further time-wasting, let’s get to the point.

RECAP: It’s Ana’s birthday, and her step-dad (and also the only real father figure in her life) is in the hospital after a severe car accident involving a drunk driver. Christian get’s Ana a bunch of dumb shit to remind us all how rich he is (like a charm bracelet that might as well be for a 13 year old, oh, and also a FUCKING CAR). Christian does something surprisingly sweet and invites a bunch of Ana’s family and friends (she still has those?) to a dinner up in Portland. Ana talks to her mom a little bit and reinforces gender stereotypes (WHAT A SHOCKER). Later, Ray (her step-father) finally wakes up.

NOTHING HAPPENED LAST CHAPTER, WOW.

ANYWAY.

Chapter Nineteen

So, Ray wakes up, and that’s all nice and good and whatever but…I don’t really care? He’s been in like 0.2% of these books. If he was someone I was supposed to care about, maybe he should have been like…an actual character?

I take up his hand in both of mine and cradle it against my face. “You’ve been in an accident. You’re in the hospital in Portland.”
Ray frowns, and I don’t know if it’s because he’s uncomfortable with my uncharacteristic display of affection or that he can’t remember the accident.

Um. Listen, writers. If you want something to be “uncharacteristic,” you need to SHOW US THAT ITS UNCHARACTERISTIC, you can’t just be like, “oh yeah, btw, this is uncharacteristic as fuck lol bye” IN BOOK FUCKING THREE. This should have been set up AGES AGO. If Ana and her dad are weird about physical affection, FUCKING SHOW THAT??? THIS ISN’T ROCKET SCIENCE.

Ana gets the nurse, who pages the doctor. Ana then goes out to the waiting room to find Christian and tell him the news. Christian asks how Ray is.

“Talking, thirsty, bewildered. He doesn’t remember the accident at all.”
“That’s understandable. Now that he’s awake, I want to get him moved to Seattle. Then we can go home, and my mom can keep an eye on him.”

“HEY WIFE, YOUR DAD’S AWAKE? COOL, LET’S GET HIM MOVED TO A HOSPITAL CLOSER TO US SO WE CAN GO THE FUCK HOME AND MY DUMB MOM CAN WATCH HIM SO WE DON’T HAVE TO. THIS HAS ALL BEEN A MASSIVE INCONVENIENCE UGH BUT THANKFULLY IT’S OVER.”

Ok, maybe I’m being unfair. Christian does seem to relax after Ana tells him Ray is ok, the “tension around his eyes vanishes,” which is nice. I’m glad he’s concerned about his father-in-law. But like…if your father-in-law just woke up out of a coma, maybe your first reaction shouldn’t be like “he’s awake? Great, LET’S MOVE HIM. I WANT TO GO HOME.”

Christian mentions how Ana hasn’t stopped smiling. Weird, it’s almost like HER FUCKING FATHER JUST WOKE UP OUT OF A COMA??? I WONDER WHY SHE HASN’T STOPPED SMILING?????

Apparently they just…left? Ray woke up and they were just like “lol BYE BITCH.” The valet pulls Ana’s new car around to the front, and Christian “eyes [it] with lust”. Please don’t fuck a car, dude. Please.

“Shall we celebrate?” [Christian] asks as we enter the foyer.
“Your dad.”
I giggle. “Oh, him.”

eyebrow raise eric

YOUR DAD JUST GOT OUT OF A COMA???? PLEASE KEEP IT IN YOUR PANTS FOR MORE THAN 2 MINUTES. WHAT THE FUCK.

They go back to their hotel room, where they get dinner and Ana wears nothing but “Christian’s T-shirt and [her] panties.” Great. Thank you. DON’T YOU THINK THIS IS A LITTLE…FAST??? YOU JUST CAME FROM A HOSPITAL??????

“What do you want to do?”
He raises an eyebrow, amused. “What I always want to do.”
“And that is?”
“Mrs. Grey, don’t be coy.”

clint eastwood disgusted

I CAN’T DO THIS AGAIN. PLEASE. PLEASE DON’T DO THIS.

Reaching across the dining table, I grasp his hand, turn it over, and skim my index finger over his palm. “I’d like you to touch me with this.” I run my finger up his index finger.
He shifts in his chair. “Just that?” His eyes darken and head at once.
“Maybe this?” I run my finger up his middle finger and back to his palm. “And this.” My nail traces his ring finger. “Definitely this.” My finger stops at his wedding ring. “This is very sexy.”
“Is it now?”
“It sure is. It says this man is mine.” And I skim the small callous that has already formed on his palm beneath the ring. He leans forward and cups my chin with his other hand.
“Mrs. Grey, are you seducing me?”
“I hope so.”
“Anastasia, I’m a given.” His voice is low. “Come here.” He tugs my hand, pulling me into his lap. “I like having unfettered access to you.”

SHE’S YOUR FUCKING WIFE, NOT A SHOW PONY. OF COURSE YOU HAVE ACCESS TO HER, BUT HER CONSENT IS WAY MORE IMPORTANT???? “Unfettered access?” Are you serious?

So they do the whole weird flirty sexy thing, and Ana says “Maybe I need to be restrained.”

“What are you going to do about it?” I challenge.
His eyes glitter. “I know what I’d like to do about it. Depends if you’re up to it.”
“Oh, Mr. Grey, you’ve been very gentle with me these last couple of days. I’m not made of glass, you know.”
“You don’t like gentle?”
“With you, of course. But you know…variety is the spice of life.” I bat my lashes at him.
“You’re after something less gentle?”
“Something life-affirming.”
He raises his brows in surprise. “Life affirming,” he repeats, astonished humor in his voice.

Ok, guys, this is like, actually super important and encouraging.

CHRISTIAN GREY IS BASICALLY ASKING FOR CONSENT HERE.

ANA IS TAKING CONTROL OF THE SITUATION AND CHRISTIAN IS HESITATING AND ASKING WHAT SHE WANTS.

AND THIS IS HUGE.

This is insane to me. I don’t really even have anything to criticize here. And, as I’ve said before, I give credit where  credit is due. And, for once, credit is due here. While the consent isn’t as clear as you could hope, it IS consent, and that is a BIG DEAL in this shit show of a series. Ana is saying she wants something rougher, and Christian is double-checking (ish) to see what she wants.

THIS IS GREAT.

I mean, not great. I still hate both of them (and also RAY JUST GOT OUT OF A FUCKING COMA??? IDK about you guys but like, my family members being in the hospital doesn’t get me all hot and bothered usually?)

[PS: I just opened a new beer, solely to prepare for the oncoming sex scene.]

Ok, so Christian takes off Ana’s t-shirt, leaving her naked except for her panties. He then goes and puts a towel down on the sofa, which is both concerning and considerate. (I mean, they’re at a hotel, I’m glad they’re not just going full-nasty on the couch)

Ana is ordered to take off her panties and sit on the couch.

He grabs me by my ponytail again and pulls my head back. “You’ll tell me to stop if this gets too much, yes?”
I nod.
“Say it.” His voice is stern.
“Yes,” I squeak.

thumbs up

I’M LIKE…BIZARRELY PROUD RIGHT NOW! Christian actually obtained consent and made it clear that Ana should tell him if she feels uncomfortable at any time! This is incredible! It’s almost like they have a healthy relationship!

Almost!

So Christian uses the belts off of the hotel-supplied bathrobes and ties Ana’s legs while she’s on the couch so they’re pulled apart. He also asks “Okay?” while he’s doing it, which is like SUPER BIZARRE to me, because I can’t remember a single other time he was this consistent and kind about asking for consent? He usually tries to get Ana drunk first, or he just intimidates her into giving consent. THIS IS A BIG DAY, GUYS.

Christian goes over to change the music, because apparently he can’t bone anyone without a proper soundtrack.

How does he do this? Here I am, trussed up and horny as hell, while he’s so cool and calm. He’s just in my field of vision, and I watch the flex and pull of the muscles of his back under his T-shirt as he changes the song. Immediately, a sweet, almost childlike female voice starts to sing about watching me.

What the fuck…did he just put on like, Enya or something? Nothing gets a girl in the mood quite like a good Enya song.

Christian asks Ana to hold out her hands, and squirts some kind of oil on them before asking her to rub her hands together. Then he asks her to touch herself, “start at your throat and work down.”

ugh

Here we go, friends. Everyone get your drinks ready! Lets see, what are some good drinking game rules…

  • Drink if Ana refuses to name any of her body parts
  • Drink if Ana clearly misunderstands how certain body parts work
  • Drink if Ana says “Oh my” or anything similar
  • Drink every time there’s an ellipses

I promise I wrote those before I started reading this part. WE’LL SEE HOW ACCURATE IT IS! (Hopefully not too accurate, I’ve only got half a beer left…)

Ana follows directions and starts at her throat and works down to her breasts.

Oh my. I gently tug at my nipples.

Drink.

My muscles clench deep in my belly. I groan in response and pull harder on my nipples, feeling them stiffen and lengthen beneath my touch.

I swear to god, Ana’s nipples turn into weird snake-creatures whenever anything sexy happens. Why do they keep elongating! I mean, like, sure, nipples change shape and get hard and whatever, but the way Ana talks makes it sound like she’s rolling out bread for baguettes, not playing with her nipples.

Also, drink.

“Again. I want to see you. See you enjoy your touch.”
Oh fuck. I repeat the process. This is so…erotic.

Drink.

“Keep still, Ana. Absorb the pleasure.”

Feel the pleasure. Taste the pleasure. BE THE PLEASURE.

Christian, exuding sexuality, runs his tongue along his teeth Holy fuck… I writhe, pulling on the restraints.

That wasn’t a typo, there really isn’t a period before “holy fuck” in my copy.

Also, drink.

Also…like, idk, a dude licking his teeth isn’t enough to get me going? I guess Ana has a teeth fetish or something, because she is going HAM on this shit.

My hands glide over my stomach down over my belly.

Isn’t…isn’t your stomach your belly? I don’t…

Drink. Just drink. We’re all drinking this whole time anyway, might as well drink one more time.

“Lower, he mouths, and he is carnality personified.
“Christian, please.”
His hands glide down from my knees, skimming my thighs, toward my sex.

JUST. SAY. VAGINA. OR CLIT. OR ANYTHING. PLEASE.

(Also, drink)

“Come on, Ana, touch yourself.”
My left hand skims over my sex, and I rub in a slow circle, my mouth an O as I pant.
“Again,” he whispers.
I groan louder and repeat the move and tip my head back, gasping.

IT’S ALMOST LIKE SHE’S NEVER TOUCHED HERSELF BEFORE.

OH WAIT.

SHE HASN’T.

Hey, kids, masturbation is great and you should try it. You can’t expect someone else to pleasure you if you don’t know how to pleasure yourself!

Oh, and also, drink. Because she still can’t refer to her body parts as anything other than vague nicknames. Like, I’d even accept “folds of skin” or something. I just…”my sex” isn’t good enough, ok. Not when you’re writing a sex scene. Especially not when you’re writing a sex scene starring a character who is FUCKING MARRIED, AND WHO SHOULD KNOW HER WAY AROUND A VAGINA BY NOW.

So Ana continues touching herself, but when she tries to touch Christian, he restrains her hands, because that’s not part of the dealio, apparently.

I groan. He releases me then eases his middle two fingers inside me, the heel of his hand resting against my clitoris.

HOLY SHIT.

SHE REFERRED TO A BODY PART BY ITS NAME.

confetti HIMYM

I’M LIKE, REALLY PROUD RIGHT NOW.

MY BABY IS GROWING UP!

“I’m going to make you come quickly, Ana. Ready?
“Yes,” I pant.
He starts to move his fingers, his hand, up and down, rapidly, assaulting both that sweet spot inside me and my clitoris at the same time. Ah! The feeling is intense–really intense. Pleasure builds and spikes throughout the lower half of my body. I want to stretch my legs, but I can’t. My hands claw at the towel beneath me.
“Surrender,” Christian whispers.

“Surrender?” This isn’t the goddamned battle of Yorktown, dude. You’re not at war, you’re just trying to make a girl cum. Calm down.

Of course, Ana comes literally the second he says that.

I explode around his fingers, crying out incoherently. He presses the heel of his hand against my clitoris as the aftershocks run through my body, prolonging the delicious agony. Vaguely, I’m aware that he’s untying my legs.

Gosh, she’s using “clitoris” left and right all of a sudden! It’s like character development, except really it’s writer development. And also it’s not that much development because this should have been happening from the beginning, but still, GOOD JOB! YOU TRIED!

Christian says “My turn” and flips Ana over, and now it’s time for Man Sex, and Ana immediately is ready to cum again, because she’s apparently a robot or something. It’s been 2 seconds! Bodies don’t work like that!

I guess we can drink for that. Except my beer is already empty. Boo.

Anyway, the scene switches, and suddenly they’re cuddling post-sex, and talking about how much they like each other’s butts. Great.

Except the song that’s playing mentions something about being sweet (idk, the reference is vague?) and Ana says “And I think there’s a lot that’s sweet about you.” Which is apparently not something that Christian wants to hear, because his smile immediately fades, and suddenly Ana needs to start reminding her husband of why he’s not a terrible awful no-good very bad person. So they exchange “I love you”s, but Christian still looks “lost.”

Like…Ok, I get it. He’s got a “tortured past” or whatever. All 4 years of it (that happened when he was barely young enough to remember). But Ana keeps being like “it will take time to heal all of his wounds!” and like, yes, I get it, it takes time (and a lot of work!) to get over severe PTSD-type stuff like this, but like…Christian should be actively seeing his psychiatrist if it’s still this much of an issue that he can’t accept love from his own wife. But he’s not seeing his psychiatrist, and that’s not good.

See your psychiatrist, folks. If you can afford it, of course. And also don’t enter into a marriage with someone that you feel the need to “fix.” It’s not your job to fix anyone except yourself (and you don’t need fixing, you just might need helping sometimes).

Anyway.

They go back into the bedroom and are going to watch TV, but then Ana decides…uh…

“Well, Mrs. Grey, now that you’ve got me, what are you going to do with me?”
I lean down and whisper in his ear, “I am going to fuck you with my mouth.”

WELL THEN.

So then we get a scene change, and suddenly it’s morning and Ana wakes up to find Christian already at work, typing an email. Apparently, a detective, Clark, wants to interview Ana in relation to Hyde.

In case you forgot (because lord knows I almost did), Hyde was Ana’s former boss who tried to assault her in the break room or whatever at their office, but she fucking OWNED HIM (it was amazing) and he got fired. BUT THEN he like…tried to break into the apartment and kidnap Ana? He’s like, terrible at being a criminal. But he’s in jail now so whatever.

But the detective wants to interview Ana about Hyde, and it’s so important that the detective is going to come all the way to Portland to interview her today. But first, they go see Ray, who seems to be doing pretty…fine, actually? Apparently Portland hospitals are full of miracles and you can go from being in a coma to being almost perfectly fine in less than a day.

Ray asks for Donuts, so Ana goes out to the waiting room to tell Christian she’s going to get Donuts. Apparently the detective will be there in a few hours. Also, Christian asks Ana to take Taylor (his security guard) with her, and she agrees, but rolls her eyes.

“There’s no one here.” His voice is deliciously low, and I know he’s threatening to spank me. I am about to dare him, when a young couple enters the room. She is weeping softly.

I shrug apologetically at Christian and he nods. He picks up his laptop, takes my hand, and leads me out of the room. “They need the privacy more than we do,” Christian murmurs. “We’ll have our fun later.”

I need to be much more drunk for this

YOU’RE IN A FUCKING HOSPITAL???? WHAT THE FUCK. CHILL YOUR BONER FOR LIKE 2 FUCKING HOURS YOU PSYCHOS.

“Oh I guess we’ll let this crying girl have the room to herself…” WELL YEAH I FUCKING HOPE SO. YOU JUST WANTED TO USE THE ROOM TO DO WEIRD KINKY SHIT. WHAT A FUCKING SACRIFICE FOR YOU.

The scene cuts, and suddenly the detective is here. The detective is only there to see Ana, but she insists that she wants Christian to stay.

“Mrs. Grey, Mr. Hyde maintains that you sexually harassed him and made several lewd advances toward him.

UM. WHAT.

THAT WAS LIKE THE ONE TOTALLY AWESOME PART OF THIS GODFORSAKEN TRASH PILE.

ANA TOTALLY KICKED HIS ASS WHEN HE TRIED TO BE A TOTAL CREEP TO HER.

AND NOW HE’S…ACCUSING HER OF BEING A CREEP???

WHAT.

Oh! I almost burst out laughing, but put my hand on Christian’s thigh to restrain him as he shifts forward in his seat.
“That’s preposterous,” Christian splutters. I squeeze Christian’s leg to silence him.
“That’s not true,” I state calmly. “In fact, it was the other way around. He propositioned me in a very aggressive manner, and he was fired.”
Detective Clark’s mouth flattens briefly into a thin line before he continues.
“Hyde alleges that you fabricated a tale about sexual harassment in order to get him fired. He says that you did this because he refused your advances and because you wanted his job.”

Ok, like, admittedly, I know nothing about how the legal process works, and I’ve never been part of a criminal investigation before, but like…this interview seems…real weird. Why wouldn’t he just ask her questions? And be like “Did you make sexual advances toward Mr. Hyde?” and stuff? Why would he be like “Well HE said that this happened!” like it’s fucking high school?

Basically he sounds like a terrible detective.

But Ana handles it well!

“What Hyde says is simply ont true.” My voice sounds calm, although I feel anything but. I’m bewildered by these accusations and nervous that Christian might explode. What’s Jack’s game? “Mr. Hyde accosted me in the office kitchen one evening. He told me that it was thanks to him that I had been hired and that he expected sexual favors in return. He tried to blackmail me, using e-mails that I’d sent to Christian, who wasn’t my husband then. I didn’t know Hyde had been monitoring my e-mails. He’s delusional–he even accused me of being a spy sent by Christian, presumably to help him take over the company. He didn’t know that Christian had already bought SIP.” I shake my head as I recall my distressing, tense encounter with Hyde.
“In the end, I-I took him down.”
Clark’s eyebrows rise in surprise. “Took him down?”
“My father is ex-army. Hyde…um, touched me, and I know how to defend myself.”

Ana, you’re being modest, you fucking OWNED HIS ASS. IT WAS AMAZING.

It’s been nearly an entire book and I’m still not over that. If this whole series was about Ana taking down weird creepy dudes, it would be MUCH, MUCH BETTER.

Christian asks Detective Clark if he’s talked to any of Hyde’s former PAs. Clark says he has, but they won’t talk much. Christian says he’s had the same problem. Naturally, Clark asks why Christian felt the need to investigate Hyde’s former Personal Assistants.

Christian gives him a steely glare. “Because my wife worked for him, and I run security checks on anyone my wife works with.”

confused cary grant

Christian…buddy…you can’t just say that and act like it’s normal. This is SUPER NOT NORMAL. People don’t usually…investigate their significant other’s bosses. That’s…super fucking creepy. WHAT A SURPRISE. CHRISTIAN IS BEING CREEPY!

Then Clark and Christian start talking about other elements of the case that Ana isn’t familiar with. Apparently Hyde may have been the one that sabotaged Christian’s helicopter way back when, and there’s something to do with a note? This is all news to em, and apparently it’s news to Ana as well.

Clark finally leaves.

“Can you believe that asshole?” Christian explodes.

HE WAS JUST DOING HIS JOB, CHRISTIAN. WHAT THE FUCK. CALM DOWN.

“Clark?”
“No, that fucker, Hyde.”

Oh. Nevermind. I was so ready for Christian to be completely unreasonable that I’m now completely taken aback that he’s being sort of reasonable.

…this is weird.

Anyway, the scene changes, and suddenly Ray has been moved to some amazing rehab center in Seattle, courtesy of Christian and his boatloads of money. Ana is with Ray, even though apparently she should be at work. Her blackberry buzzes, but it’s a number she doesn’t recognize, so she lets it go to voicemail. Finally, Ana leaves the hospital.

“Mrs. Grey! Mrs. Grey!”
Turning, I see Dr. Greene hurrying toward me, looking her usual immaculate self, if a little flustered.

Oh. Oh shit. That’s Ana’s OB/GYN, the one that she kind of didn’t really get a choice about, because Christian is weird and stupid about condoms and refuses to use them, so instead forces his partners to go on their choice of hormonal BC, even though hormonal BC can be really difficult to deal with depending on your body chemistry and can have adverse affects and isn’t something that you should just do because your boyfriend is a dick about condoms.

AS YOU CAN TELL I’VE GOTTEN OVER IT SINCE THEN.

“Mrs. Grey, how are you? Did you get my message? I called earlier.”
“No.” My scalp prickles.
“Well, I was wondering why you’d cancelled four appointments.”
Four appointments? I gape at her. I’ve missed four appointments! How?
“Perhaps we should talk about this in my office. I was going out for lunch–do you have time right now?”
I not meekly. “Sure. I…” Words fail me. I’ve missed four appointments? I’m late for my shot. Shit.

wait what froze

UM.

WHAT.

They go to Dr. Greene’s office.

“Yes…it’s been over thirteen weeks. You’re cutting it a bit close. We’d better do a test before we give you another shot.”
“A test?” I whisper, all the blood rushing from my head.
“A pregnancy test.”
Oh no.

FUCK??!??

She reaches into the drawer of her desk. “You know what to do with this.” She hands me a small container. “The restroom is just outside my office.”

FUCK!!!

Shit, shit, shit, shit, shit. How could I have let this happen…again? I suddenly feel sick and offer a silent prayer. Please no. Please no. It’s too soon. It’s too soon. It’s too soon.

When I reenter Dr. Green’s office, she gives me a tight smile and waves me to the seat in front of her desk. I sit down and wordlessly hand her my sample. She dips a small white stick into it and watches. She raises her eyebrows at it turns pale blue.
“What does blue meen?” The tension is almost choking me.
She looks up at me, her eyes serious.
“Well, Mrs. Grey, it means you’re pregnant.”
What? No. No. No. Fuck.

fuck i'm pregnant

End of Chapter Nineteen

UM. HOLY SHIT.

Like, ok, no dude should force his GF/Wife/Whatever to go on birth control without discussing it extensively and helping her make the decision (because it’s HER BODY NOT YOURS YOU CREEP). But…once you’re on BC…like, FUCKING KEEP TRACK OF THAT SHIT?

I get it. The pill sucks. I’ve been there, friends. But like, if you’re on the shot…SET A FUCKING APPOINTMENT IN YOUR PHONE??? DON’T JUST FUCKING LET THAT SLIDE? THE FUCK?

OR!! GET AN IUD!!!! Like it hurts like fucking HELL but at least you don’t have to worry about surprise vagina gremlins?

It obviously takes 2 people to get preggo, so I’m not solely blaming Ana here, but like…the FUCK, Ana! GET IT FUCKING TOGETHER!!

So I guess now there’s a baby to worry about. GOOD THING THEY ALREADY HAVE A STRONG, HEALTHY, NOT-AT-ALL-ABUSIVE RELATIONSHIP TO BRING A CHILD INTO!!!!1!1! THIS IS ALL FINE AND GOOD AND I’M NOT CONCERNED AT ALL!

jon stewart judging

(Ok. I lied. I am concerned.)

I have no idea when I’ll get the next chapter up, but I’ll try to not wait like almost a whole year for the next one!

As always, thank you for reading, and for continuing to read even though I am terrible at posting things on time! You guys are amazing!

Caitlin Liveblogs Fifty Shades Freed: Chapter 18

[disclaimer: I don’t own any of the gifs used in this post. If you see a gif that you created and would either like credit for it or would like it taken down, please let me know.]

Look at me, posting things on time! Amazing!

RECAP: Ana finds out from José that her step-dad, Ray, is in the hospital after getting in a car accident while on a fishing trip with José and his dad. Ana rushes out to the hospital in Portland, where she holds José’s hand (which seems like a PHENOMENALLY bad idea when you’re married to Christian), but then Christian shows up and is actually…kind of fine? They find out that Ray is in a coma because he’s got potential brain damage. Christian has his mom come out and help with Ray’s treatment (except she doesn’t really? she just is there? for some reason?). Ana spends a whole lot of time reminding us that her step-dad is a very important father figure in her life (she calls him “daddy” like 30 times. WHY). Christian makes a bizarre pop culture reference that makes no sense. They go back to the hotel and go to bed (withOUT having sex, shockingly).

Hopefully chapter 18 is less exciting than 17 was. I don’t know if I can handle all of that action.

Chapter Eighteen

Ana wakes up, and for a moment she forgets where she is and why she’s there. And then she remembers, in the most unnecessarily dramatic way possible:

“Shit! Daddy!” I gasp out loud, recalling with a gut-wrenching surge of apprehension that twists my heart and starts it pounding why I’m in Portland.

Jesus H. Christ. That description would be more fitting if she saw her dad get LITERALLY STABBED in front of her. Also that sentence structure is convoluted as FUCK. Like, pick ONE description of how you’re feeling here, you don’t need THREE OF THEM.

Ugh.  I’ve seen actual 8-year-olds write better than this.

Christian immediately comforts Ana, and tells her he already called the hospital and found out that Ray’s doing fine. Other than, you know, being in a coma.

OH, also it’s Ana’s birthday. Christian gives her a small box with a tiny gift card that says: “For all our firsts on your first birthday as my beloved wife. I love you.” Ugh. Gag me.

Oh my, how sweet is that?

Uh, not very sweet? It’s honestly a pretty standard thing to tell your wife that you love her on her birthday? Ana, you’ve set the bar so low that Christian literally can just step over it.

Uggghhhhh he got her a charm bracelet, and all the charms represent things they’ve done together (including a vanilla ice cream cone, in honor of them having “vanilla” sex. You disgust me).

I fondle the last two charms: a letter C — oh yes, I was his first girlfriend to use his first name. I smile at the thought. And finally, there’s a key.
“To my heart and soul,” he whispers.

vomit gif toddlers in tiaras

I’m literally going to vomit all over myself. HE ALREADY GAVE YOU THE KEY TO HIS HEART AND SOUL, IT’S CALLED YOUR WEDDING RING AND YOU’RE WEARING IT RIGHT NOW.

Like wow, cool, you love each other. NO ONE CARES. That shit is only romantic if you’re like 14 and it’s Valentine’s Day.

Maybe I’m just a cynical asshole, but like…come the fuck on.

They eat breakfast and Ana goes to brush her teeth before heading over to the hospital.

A memory springs unbidden to my mind. I used his toothbrush after I first spent the night with him. I smirk and grab his toothbrush in homage to that first time.

Okay, I just want all of us to look back on one of my favorite terrible moments from this shitfest of a book series. This is from Fifty Shades of Grey, Chapter 5:

I want to clean my teeth. I eye Christian’s toothbrush. It would be like having him in my mouth. Hmm…Glancing guiltily over my shoulder at the door, I feel the bristles on the toothbrush. They are damp. He must have used it already. Grabbing it quickly, I squirt toothpaste on it and brush my teeth in double-quick time. I feel so naughty. It’s such a thrill.

YUP, THAT’S A THING THAT ACTUALLY HAPPENED.

The weirdest part is that, when compared up close like this, the writing actually IS a lot better in book 3 than it was in book 1. Which is sad, because the writing in Freed is still AWFUL. At least E.L. James has finally learned how to use a variety of sentence structures. It only took her 2+ books to learn that lesson, so impressive!

Anyway.

They get in the elevator and start referencing the first time they kissed, and honestly, it is kind of a funny throw-back? But that’s because that kiss was literally one of the only well-written sexy things in this entire series. I give credit where credit is due, and that elevator kiss was pretty excellent…at least until their tongues start doing a “slow erotic dance” (direct quote, I’m not even kidding).

Oh good, now Ana and Christian are recreating that elevator kiss.

He groans into my mouth and cups my head, cradling me as we kiss–really kiss, our tongues exploring the oh-so-familiar but still oh-so-new, oh-so-exciting territory that is the other’s mouth.

This whole scene is suddenly oh-so-vomit-worthy. Congratulations.

My inner goddess swoons, bringing my libido back from purdah.

ACoops is judging you

Just when you thought the “inner goddess” bullshit was gone forever…

Also, in case you’re ignorant like me, here’s what “purdah” is referring to: “The practice among women in certain Muslim and Hindu societies of living in a separate room or behind a curtain, or of dressing in all-enveloping clothes, in order to stay out of the sight of men or strangers.”

Okay, look, E.L. James. You’re writing a book populated ENTIRELY by white people and horribly stereotypical people of color (of which there are LITERALLY TWO). You DO NOT get to just throw out terms like “Purdah” and think that’s ok. It’s not okay. I’m going to go out on a limb and guess that you don’t know anything about Muslim/Hindu culture, so you don’t get to just fucking use the word “Purdah” like you know what it means. It doesn’t make your book seem “cultured,” it doesn’t make your writing look clever, it doesn’t even make that line fucking INTERESTING. All it does is make you look like a piece of shit who appropriates parts of other cultures that you don’t even understand.

“Purdah” has a long history, and a lot of depth and details which YOU WOULD KNOW IF YOU TOOK TWO SECONDS TO LOOK AT EVEN JUST THE WIKIPEDIA PAGE. I highly doubt that’s a term that’s okay to use when talking about your character’s inner sex machine??? The FUCK is wrong with you.

Anyway.

They get outside and SURPRISE, Ana’s rich bastard of a husband bought her a car. Whoop di fucking doo.

My face splits into a huge grin, and my inner goddess does a back flip off the high dive.

uuuuuUUUGGGHHHHH STOP IT.

ARE YOU GOING TO GO FUCK IN THE CAR? PUT YOUR GODDAMNED “INNER GODDESS” AWAY.

They get in the car and Christian immediately starts criticizing Ana’s driving. Great. Just what I wanted to read about.

They finally get to the hospital, and Ray’s condition hasn’t changed. Apparently Christian’s dad is a lawyer and is suing the drunk driver who hit Ray’s car. Cool.

A bunch of hospital stuff happens, the nurse checks on Ray, they await some scans, things like that. None of it is very exciting or interesting.

Ana realizes she hasn’t heard from her mom in awhile, and her mom doesn’t know about Ray. Her mom also hasn’t called to wish Ana a happy birthday, which is kind of rude. Ana calls, but her mom doesn’t pick up. That seems like something Ana should be more concerned about, but she’s pretty whatever about it?

Ana and Christian start talking about Christian’s “Taiwan thing,” for his mysterious business. Again. VERY boring. Ana asks him why he works so hard all the time (which it doesn’t seem like he does, but ok).

“I don’t want to be poor,” he says, his voice low. “I’ve done that. I’m not going back there again. Besides…it’s a game,” he murmurs. “It’s about winning. A game I’ve always found very easy.”

Oh, gee! All you have to do to become a multi-billionaire is just decide to not be poor anymore! AMAZING! It’s just a game! Wow, who knew it was so easy?

annoyed with paper

Literally just shut up right now.

Ana talks about how much she loves all of Christian’s different personalities (philanthropic Christian…megalomaniac Christian…control-freak Christian…just to name a few). Then she calls him “Fifty Shades” again, which apparently is supposed to be exciting or clever or something, but really it just feels EXCEEDINGLY forced.

They leave the hospital, and Christian lets Ana drive (shocking). They go grab lunch at the place they went after José’s photography show in book 2. Apparently this is some kind of montage episode bullshit. Yeah, I get it, I’ve read all three of these fucking books, trust me, I REMEMBER EVERY PAINFUL SECOND OF IT.

They go back to the hospital. Nothing has changed. They leave again.

Godddd I can feel my brain fucking liquefying.

They go back to the hotel, and Christian has planned a fancy dinner at the hotel restaurant, and had Taylor go buy Ana a fancy dress and shoes. Great. He ALSO had Taylor go buy fucking BLACK, LACEY LINGERIE FOR HIS WIFE.

THAT’S TOTALLY NOT FUCKED UP AT ALL.

“I look forward to taking this off you later.”

HER DAD IS STILL IN A COMA YOU PIECE OF SHIT. MAYBE SHE DOESN’T WANT TO DO KINKY SHIT WITH YOU RIGHT NOW?

But of course she will. This is Anastasia Steele we’re talking about, after all. If Christian wants to have sex, she’s not going to tell him no.

They head down to dinner, and every woman they pass shoots Ana envious glares because Christian looks so attractive. Because, in case you forgot, the natural female state is “jealous bitch.” Except for Ana, who’s a “cool girl,” who’s “special.”

God help me, I want to shoot my eyes out.

They get to the table and find Kate, Elliot, Mia, Ethan, Carrick (Christian’s Dad), and Grace (his mom), José and Mr. Rodriguez, and Ana’s mom and her husband, Bob.

Okay, now this is ACTUALLY a really sweet thing to do. The charm bracelet thing was pretty bogus, but this is like, a super great surprise for someone’s birthday. Well done, Christian. It feels weird not to get mad at you.

We get literally like 3 pages of all these people greeting Ana, and I’m not even going to recap it because it’s horribly boring. Ana gets a cake with candles and wishes for her dad to get better.

Finally everyone leaves and they go back to the hotel room and sex is implied, but we don’t have to suffer through it, thankfully.

The next morning, all the Greys and Kate and her brother return to Seattle in Christian’s helicopter (I have no idea who’s flying it though…). Honestly, I kind of want the helicopter to crash, because literally NOTHING bad has happened this whole chapter, and it’s SO GODDAMNED BORING.

BAD THINGS HAVE TO HAPPEN IN STORIES. CONFLICTS HAVE TO HAPPEN. OTHERWISE IT’S NOT A STORY.

Ughhhhh.

Ana and Christian go back to the hospital. Ray still hasn’t woken up. Ana’s mom comes with, and they have heartfelt moments where everyone cries. Ana and her mom have a heart-to-heart about her mom’s relationship with Ray (which ended because she just couldn’t live with him, apparently?), and they talk about Ana and Christian.

“You look so good together, Ana. So happy.”
“We are, I think.”

You THINK? What a vote of confidence for your marriage, Ana. Real promising start.

“Getting there, anyway. I love him. He’s the center of my world. The sun rises and sets with him for me, too.”

LITERALLY STOP. Loving him is great, but “love” should not mean “MY WORLD WOULD FUCKING END IF I LOST HIM.” You should be your own person, Ana. Come on.

“Make sure you tell him. Men need to hear that stuff just like we do.”

AH YES, LET’S REINFORCE THE GENDER STEREOTYPES A LITTLE MORE IN THIS BOOK. EVEN THOUGH MEN ARE EMOTIONALLY STUNTED SACKS OF TESTOSTERONE, THEY STILL NEED TO KNOW THAT YOU LOVE THEM!

Literally what the fuck, Ana’s mom.

…also I can’t remember for the life of me what her mom’s name is. If only someone had made some kind of character list to keep track of everyone in these books….

OH YEAH.

(P.S. her name is Carla. I just had to look it up. Thank god I made that character list, seriously, it’s so hard to keep track of everyone in this trash heap.)

Carla and her husband leave, and Ana and Christian leave then too. They come back at the end of the day, and they find that Ray has been taken off the ventilator and is breathing on his own. Ana starts reading the sports page to Ray, so he can hear the soccer scores.

“And the final score, Sounders 1, Real Salt Lake 2.”
“Hey, Annie, we lost? No!” Ray rasps, and he squeezes my hand.
Daddy!

FASCINATING. Totally didn’t see that coming. What a shocker.

End of Chapter Eighteen

Please, for the love of god, MAKE SOME ACTUAL FUCKING CONFLICT HAPPEN IN THE NEXT CHAPTER.

I’M SO BORED I’M GOING TO CRY.

HOLY SHIT.

Anyway, thanks again for reading! I’ll try and get the next chapter up next week, but as always, no guarantees.

Caitlin Liveblogs Fifty Shades Freed: Chapter 17

[disclaimer: I don’t own any of the gifs used in this post. If you see a gif that you created and would either like credit for it or would like it taken down, please let me know.]

Here I am! Sorry (again…) for the MASSIVE delay, all of my other responsibilities have been taking priority, and it’s just been hard to find the time/energy for this blog. BUT I’M HERE. And I’m usually a wee bit more productive in the fall (what with the back-to-school vibe), so maybe these blogs will be a little more consistent. No promises though. You know I’m a nightmare about posting things on-time here. But I will do my best! And thank you SO SO SO much for your patience. As always, you guys are the absolute best.

RECAP: Ana returns back to work after their Aspen trip, and is immediately confronted by two of Christian’s ex-subs, Leila (the one who tried to shoot Ana) and Susi. Ana talks a lot about how beautiful the two women are (I ship it), and they talk to her about how they wanted to meet her because she “caught” Christian. Unsurprisingly, Christian calls and interrupts the whole meeting to literally scream at his wife for “disobeying instructions,” even though he never even GAVE her these instructions to not talk to his ex-subs. Ana, to her credit, hangs up, but knows that she’s got a storm coming (because her husband is an abusive nightmare but WHAT ELSE IS NEW). Leila and Ana talk about how they both love(d) Christian and how great he is, but then the object of their affection shows up and is a raging sack of shit, like he always is, to immediately fire Ana’s bodyguard (Prescott) for no real reason. He then yells at Ana about defying him, although Ana calmly explains that he’s full of shit. He also says he doesn’t want her “tainted” by his “old life.” Christian wants Ana to leave work early (probably so he can abuse her more), but Ana calls him on his bullshit. BUT THEN he completely derails the conversation and starts talking about sex. And then they do decide to go home, and of course have mind-blowing sex. BUT THEN a few days (and some obnoxious emails) later Ana gets a call from José’s father who says that her step-dad Ray has been in an accident.

Chapter Seventeen

“Mr. Rodriguez, what’s happened?” My voice is hoarse and thick with unshed tears. Ray. Sweet Ray. My dad.

Yeah, ok, we get it, he’s your father-figure. You keep beating that point home like we’re suddenly going to care about it, buuuuut we don’t. Saying “he’s basically my father!” doesn’t make Ray suddenly matter as a character.

So apparently Ray has been in a car accident, and he’s been airlifted to Portland. It appears that Mr. Rodriguez may have had something to do with the accident? Maybe he was driving the car? He says “Oh, Ana, I didn’t see the car. I just didn’t see it…” and his voice cracks. But if he was in the accident, why is he fine?

Ana leaves work in a hurry, cancelling all of her appointments for the day (I still don’t get how she magically became the senior editor at this publishing house but okay…). Ana tries to call Christian from the car, but he left his phone with his secretary, so Ana leaves a message with her. When the secretary asks if Ana is ok, she says “no” and just says to have Christian call her.

I bet Mr. Over-reaction totally won’t freak out about that one.

Ana’s phone rings a short time later.

“Christian,” I gasp.
“Christ, Ana. What’s wrong?”

Wow…surprisingly level-headed! Apparently Christian only gets upset when Ana violates one of his bullshit “rules,” but when she frantically calls and leaves a message that she’s not okay, all she gets is a “Christ, Ana.” Ugh.

“It’s Ray–he’s been in an accident.”
“Shit!”
“Yes. I am on my way to Portland.”

Has E.L. James EVER HEARD TWO HUMAN BEINGS HAVE A CONVERSATION.

“My dad’s hurt.”
“SHIT.”
“Yes.”

black widow really

Christian apparently will meet Ana there in 3 hours, because he has a very important, non-specific business meeting with some guys from Taiwan about a “deal” they’ve been “hammering out for months.”

Why do I know nothing about this?

BECAUSE CHRISTIAN DOESN’T SHARE THINGS WITH YOU. BECAUSE HE LIKES TO CONTROL YOU, AND DOESN’T OPEN UP TO YOU, AND YOU’RE INVOLVED IN A VERY UNHEALTHY RELATIONSHIP, CONGRATU-FUCKING-LATIONS.

“omgggg why doesn’t my extremely emotionally (and sometimes physically) abusive husband share things with meee???”

Because he’s a piece of shit, Ana.

ALSO. WHAT THE FUCK BUSINESS DOES CHRISTIAN EVEN FUCKING DO.

FUN FACT, KIDS: TO MAKE YOUR CHARACTERS BELIEVABLE, DO SOME FUCKING RESEARCH.

If they’re in “business,” maybe spend 2 seconds of time and FIGURE OUT WHAT FUCKING KIND OF BUSINESS THEY DO, AND THEN TALK TO SOMEONE IN THAT BUSINESS SO YOU UNDERSTAND HOW IT WORKS AND CAN MAKE THAT CHARACTER’S LIFE AND EXPERIENCES MORE BELIEVABLE.

You cannot (or should not be able to…) get away with half-assing character development like this. It’s lazy, and it’s bullshit, and it’s boring. If we knew what kind of “business” Christian did, we would understand more about him and his day-to-day experiences. But, of course, if we knew what kind of business he did, his unrealistically high paycheck wouldn’t make sense, because you’re placing him in a world that is too real, as opposed to placing him in this fantasy world where people can just make billions of dollars per second doing “business” and people with a degree in English (and without an email address) can just waltz in and get a major publishing job in a matter of days.

Basically this whole book is bullshit fantasy escapism and it’s terrible. I more easily believe in Tolkien’s always-saves-the-day Eagle bullshit than I believe in any of this.

Oh, and of course Christian is going to FLY to Portland, even though the last time he flew he almost died (except not really, because his helicopter crashed and he LITERALLY didn’t get a scratch on him). So now Ana is freaking out about that too.

Ana arrives at the hospital and sees Mr. Rodriguez and José. Mr. Rodriguez is in a cast, but seems otherwise fine. Ana starts crying and José puts his arms around her and strokes her hair. I’m sure THAT will go over well with Christian.

Apparently Mr. Rodriguez, José and Ray were on a fishing trip, when they were hit by a drunk driver, who hit the passenger side of the car, where Ray was sitting. They have no idea how he’s doing, apparently.

Now Ana’s cold, so José puts his jacket on her shoulders.

I’m so glad E.L. James used a severe car accident as a plot device to set up a jealous meeting between José and Christian. Like…are you kidding me? If that’s honestly what this is leading up to I’m going to lose my mind. And I’m sure Christian will get mad at Ana for no reason and use sex to punish her for having a male friend.

WOOPS and now Ana and José are holding hands. Mr. Rodriguez is holding her other hand, BUT STILL. The potential drama is PALPABLE.

Oh but they stopped, because Sawyer (another bodyguard) brought Ana tea. But then they end up holding hands again.

BUT THEN…

Christian strides in. His face darkens momentarily when he notices my hand in José’s.

awwww shiiit

Ana runs into his arms and is all comforted and whatever. Christian asks what the deal is, and they fill him in. He then sits down with Ana.

“Have you eaten?” he asks.
I shake my head.
“Are you hungry?”
I shake my head.
“But you’re cold?” he asks, eyeing José’s jacket.
He shifts in his chair, but wisely says nothing.

Oh wow, Christian is full of surprises this chapter! That’s twice now that I expected him to lose his shit, and he appears to be just mildly uncomfortable! I’m literally in shock right now.

But more importantly, what the fuck is that line of questioning? It sounds like he’s confused that she’s both not hungry AND cold. Like those two things rarely occur together or something. “You’re not hungry…but you’re cold???” *BRAIN EXPLODES*

A doctor comes in and asks Ana if she’s Ray’s next of kin.

“I’m his daughter, Ana.”
“Miss Steele–”
“Mrs. Grey,” Christian interrupts him.

WHY ARE YOU INTERRUPTING THE FUCKING DOCTOR, CHRISTIAN??? I KNOW YOU WANT EVERYONE TO KNOW THAT YOU’VE PEED IN A CIRCLE AROUND ANA AND SHE’S THEREFORE YOUR PROPERTY, BUT I THINK THERE ARE *SLIGHTLY* MORE IMPORTANT THINGS TO TALK ABOUT RIGHT NOW.

Apparently Ray is stable, but in critical condition. He’s suffered several severe internal injuries, and had severe contusions to the head, and had to be put in a coma while they monitor the brain swelling. Christian asks what the prognosis is, and the doctor says it’s possible Ray could make a complete recovery (which I’m sure he will, because this is Magic Christmas Land of Miracles), but it’s “in God’s hands now.”

The doctor leaves, and then so do Mr. Rodriguez and José. Ana gives José his jacket back, and Christian has Sawyer drive the two home, leaving Ana and Christian alone in the waiting room.

Ana asks how the helicopter was, and Christian says “she was yar,” which is apparently a reference to a movie, The Philadelphia Story.

“I don’t know it.”
“I think I have it on Blu-Ray at home. We can watch it and make out.” He kisses my hair and I smile once more.

DUDE, HER DAD MIGHT HAVE FUCKING BRAIN DAMAGE. HOLD OFF WITH YOUR “Netflix and Chill” BULLSHIT.

Ana asks about the Taiwan thing, and apparently Christian bought a shipyard over there, because it’s cheaper to do whatever businessy things he needs to do over there. I’m glad that even in Magic Christmas Land of Miracles outsourcing and the exploitation of under-paid workers by rich white assholes is still a thing. We can’t suspend our belief TOO much, now can we.

They go check on Ray. This whole section is written as several short paragraphs describing the scene, separated by Ana thinking “Daddy” in italics every few lines.

I say again: calling him “daddy” doesn’t make us give a singular shit about him.

Better idea: Why not take this time to give us some flashbacks of Ana’s time growing up with Ray? SHOW US their relationship, rather than just telling us that we’re supposed to care. MAKE US CARE. You don’t get to take shortcuts with this stuff.

Or apparently you DO get to take shortcuts, because this awful book has made TONS of money, despite it’s GLARING flaws in writing and story. So apparently there are no rules for writing! Who gives a shit! Write whatever you want, make it sexy, and you’ll make millions!

ass trophy

Christian leaves Ana alone with unconscious Ray, because he has to “make a phone call.” Probably to do more unexplained “business.” I honestly wouldn’t be surprised if his “business” was just selling sex slaves. To be honest, that makes 100% more sense than anything else.

Ana starts telling Ray all about her trip to Aspen, and plans an imaginary fishing trip for Ray and Christian to go on. Again, this interaction is basically meaningless, and it would be way more interesting to see Ana going “Hey, dad, remember that time…?” and telling a story about their relationship, because then at least we would see WHY she cares so much about this man who is not her biological father. But of course, this is E.L. James, not a writer who cares about telling a good story, so instead we get an empty interaction.

Christian persuades Ana to leave for the night, and they go to the suite at the hotel where Ana and Christian first got together. Ana wants to take a bath, and they head into the bedroom to get to the bathroom. Ana is, understandably, pretty numb and upset about the whole Ray-might-have-brain-damage-and-is-in-a-coma thing.

“Oh, Ana,” Christian murmurs. “I’ve not seen you like this. You’re normally so brave and strong.”

are you fucking kidding me

First of all, when has she been brave and strong? When she’s trying not to cry because you’re beating her and she feels like she can’t say no because she “loves” you? When she stands up to you for 2 seconds before ultimately backing down in the face of your threats of (often sexual) abuse?

Second, HER DAD IS IN A FUCKING COMA AND MIGHT HAVE BRAIN DAMAGE?! WHAT THE FUCK DO YOU EXPECT, CHRISTIAN?

I swear to fucking GOD, if they bone right now, while Ana is this emotionally wrecked, I am going to LOSE MY ENTIRE FUCKING MIND.

They’re taking a bath together…but surprisingly all they do is talk? They eventually get out, and find bags of clothes (recently purchased by Taylor, Christian’s other body guard) for them in the bedroom. And…they put them on! This chapter literally could not be more surprising!

Apparently tomorrow is Ana’s birthday. Ugh. I’m sure we’ll get some truly vomit-inducing birthday sex out of that one.

They go visit Ray again before visiting hours end. José is there again, and he and Christian eye each other warily, but do nothing. José says Ray is doing well, and promises to come back tomorrow, and wants to know if Ana will be there. She assures him that they will be.

José eyes Christian quickly then pulls me into a brief hug. “Mañana.”

I don’t think E.L. James has ever encountered an actual Mexican person in her entire fucking life. Why the FUCK would José, a bilingual citizen of the United States, randomly use the Spanish word for “tomorrow” when talking to his white, non-Spanish-speaking friend? OH RIGHT, IT’S ALMOST LIKE HE’S A RACIST CARICATURE OF A MEXICAN PERSON, BECAUSE E.L. JAMES CAN’T BE BOTHERED TO EVEN DO RUDIMENTARY RESEARCH ON HOW PEOPLE TALK TO EACH OTHER, SO INSTEAD SHE RELIES ON RACIST TROPES AND STEREOTYPES TO DRIVE HOME THE IDEA THAT HER CAST OF CHARACTERS IS SOoOoOoOoO DIVERSE BECAUSE IT INCLUDES A SINGULAR NON-WHITE PERSON.

These books are so awful about glorifying abuse that most people don’t see or tend to forget how blatantly racist things get.

[Fun fact: this is the place where WordPress pretended to delete this entire post without saving it. I somehow managed to get it back, and I’m not sure how, but you can thank the Technology Gods for giving you this post, because I was about to rage quit, I was so fucking mad. But now it’s ok! The post came back! If you hate-blog something hard enough, it will always come back to you. Remember that, kids.]

While José is walking away, Christian tells Ana that José is still “nuts” about her.

“No he’s not. And even if he is..” I shrug because right now I just don’t care.
Christian gives me a tight smile, and my heart melts.
“Well done,” I murmur.
He frowns.
“For not frothing at the mouth.”
He gapes at me, wounded, but amused, too. “I’ve never frothed.”

GOT judgement

Ah, yes, give Christian a “well done” sticker for not literally murdering your male friend who gave you a friendly hug in a time of stress/grief/need. Good job, Christian, what a nice guy.

They go see Ray, and SURPRISE, Christian’s mom, Grace, is there. Apparently she went to school with Ray’s doctor. But she’s not helping with Ray’s treatment, so I don’t really know why she’s there??? But talking to her and Ray’s doctor makes Ana feel better, so at least that’s good.

They head back to the hotel, with Ana seeming “brighter,” according to Christian. He tells her that she should get some sleep.

He’s right. I’m so tired. It’s been an emotional day. I crane my head around and gaze at him a beat. We’re not going to make love? And I’m relieved. In fact, he’s had a totally hands-off approach with me all day. I wonder if I should be alarmed by this turn of events, but since my inner goddess has left the building and taken my libido with her, I’ll think about it in the morning.

Good job, Christian! You managed to reign in your furious libido for a good several hours! What a good husband!

But Ana, why the fuck would you be alarmed? You realize you don’t have to have sex with Christian every day for him to love you, right? You can, you know, not have sex for a day or two and he won’t dump you…or at least he shouldn’t dump you, but who fucking knows.

“Promise me something,” he says softly.
“Hmm?” It’s a question that I’m too tired to articulate.
“Promise me you’ll eat something tomorrow. I can just about tolerate you wearing another man’s jacket without frothing at the mouth, but, Ana…you must eat. Please.”

Ughhhh, AGAIN with the treating Ana like a child thing. Like, she’s a grown woman, you can’t force her to eat? You can ask her to eat but like…she’s going through a lot, maybe try to be supportive instead of saying she HAS to eat to please you? Like, I get it, he’s being concerned, and he has a weird thing about food (which I guess is supposed to count as character development…), but the way he frames this is just weird. Why is he bringing up the Jacket thing? Is he going to get pissed off at Ana and force her to eat? Like…that’s fucked up?

Ana thanks Christian for being there with her.

“Where else would I be? I want to be wherever you are, Ana. Being here makes me think of how far we’ve come. And the night I first slept with you. What a night that was. I watched you for hours. You were just…yar,” he breathes.

First of all, no one cares about his bizarre movie reference. Referencing pop culture is 99% a bad idea, unless you can do it REALLY well and make it fit the story (see Ernest Cline’s Ready Player One for an excellent example of pop culture references done right). So this “yar” thing is useless, and no one really gets what it means, and honestly it cheapens what’s supposed to be a sweet moment.

Secondly…WHY DID YOU WATCH HER FOR HOURS. THAT’S FUCKING CREEPY. GTFO. If someone told me they watched me for hours I would CALL THE FUCKING POLICE AND/OR MACE THEIR FUCKING FACE. That’s creepy and stalkerish and is only ok if you’re watching the person in order to wake them up in the event of a Freddie Kruger attack. That is the ONLY ACCEPTABLE SITUATION FOR THAT BEHAVIOR.

But, we all knew Christian was a creepy fuck from the beginning, so none of this is shocking.

Christian tells Ana to go to sleep, and she does.

End of Chapter Seventeen

WHEW. We got there boys and girls. I can’t tell you how furious I was when I thought I had lost 2 hours worth of work. That setback almost cost another week of delays, because I honestly just didn’t have the mental stability to pull another 2 hours of rage-blogging out of my ass, and wouldn’t have been able to retype the post for several days, at best.

BUT, the gods of technology have smiled on us this day.

So, with chapter 17 done, we’ve got a total of 12 chapters left of this festival of nightmares (which includes 8 regular chapters, an epilogue, and 3 bonus chapters, which are relatively short mega-blasts of utter drivel, so those’ll be fun). We’re getting closer! With the end (almost) in sight, hopefully I’ll be getting these posts out more regularly, but again, no guarantees.

I can’t apologize enough for all the delays I’ve put you guys through. For those of you still here, from the bottom of my heart, thank you. You guys make this shitstorm worth braving.

Caitlin Liveblogs Fifty Shades Freed: Chapter 16

[disclaimer: I don’t own any of the gifs used in this post. If you see a gif that you created and would either like credit for it or would like it taken down, please let me know.]

This whole series is literally exhausting. I also just heard that E.L. James wants to publish a how-to guide for writing. Is this how the world ends? Because that’s sure what it feels like this all is leading to.

ANYWAY. Let’s do a recap, because I seem to have willfully forgotten everything that happened in the last chapter.

RECAP: So Ana and Christian are still in Aspen with their friends. The last chapter opened with them discussing the whole “some guy danced with/was very creepy towards Ana and she slapped him and then Christian punched him” thing. And then they discuss the spanking and rough sex stuff they like. And then Christian says that he’d like to “subdue” Ana in bed while she “resists” him. So they have gross rape-play sex and it made me really uncomfortable. They go back home, and Ana goes back to work. But she doesn’t REALLY go back to work because she spends all her time emailing Christian. E.L. James uses these emails as a really stupid, boring way to show that time is passing. Cut to a few days in the future, when suddenly Leila (the crazy girl with a gun who showed up in Ana’s apartment and was really weird but at no point actually posed an actual threat) shows up at Ana’s office. THE SUSPENSE IS KILLING ME.

(No it isn’t)

Chapter Sixteen

So apparently Leila brought a friend with her. But we don’t get to find out who it is or why they’re here yet, because first Ana’s bodyguard, a woman named Prescott, needs to talk to Ana. We find out that Ana has a “proscribed list of visitors,” basically a watch-list of people who shouldn’t be allowed to “come into contact with” Ana. Even though Leila is just mentally ill and doesn’t actually pose a threat to Ana and has been receiving treatment for her mental breakdown. The girl is literally like 100lbs when soaking wet, I doubt she’s a threat to much of anyone, especially when she doesn’t have a gun.

Prescott didn’t even want to let Leila in the building, but she was in the bathroom at the time, and Leila got past her and to the reception. This is all very riveting and I’m so thrilled to be reading this right now. Much excitement. Very wow.

statler and waldorf sleeping

Prescott advises Ana against seeing Leila, but Ana says she wants to know why they came to see her, so finally they agree that Ana will see them, but first Prescott will search them.

My brain is literally liquefying, this is the most boring thing I’ve ever read in my whole life.

Of course Ana emails Christian to tell him about all this, and says not to worry and that she’ll call when the meeting is over. Lol. Christian is going to show up and fucking murder Leila. He is the literal king of overreaction. I have no idea why Ana thinks this email will appease him, but okay.

I stand, smoothing my gray pencil skirt over my hips, pinch my cheeks to give them some color, and undo the next button on my gray silk blouse. Okay, I’m ready.

Uh…are you going to…seduce them? “My husband’s ex-submissive who once pointed a gun at me is here to see me. Better look as sexy as possible to protect myself!” What the fuck.

I know, I know, she’s trying to intimidate Leila by showing her how sexy and cool Ana is, but like…come on, man. It’s not a contest. It couldn’t be LESS of a contest. You married the guy. I do not understand anything about this.

Leila looks much better. More than better–she’s very attractive. There’s a rosy bloom to her cheeks, and her brown eyes are bright, her hair clean and shiny.

lesbian

LITERALLY ANA COULD NOT BE MORE OF A LESBIAN. She’s VIOLENTLY IN LOVE with Kate, and now she appears to have fallen head-over-heels for Leila. No wonder Ana wanted to flash a little cleavage. Someone write some Ana/Leila fics ASAP.

So apparently the other girl (who also has dark hair) is named Susi, and she was also a former submissive of Christian’s. While Ana invites them to sit, her secretary says that Christian is on the phone and was “very insistent.” Cool, Christian. Let your wife handle something on her own for once in her life. Although idk why Ana even told him anything, she had to know that he’d freak out.

So Susi says that she wanted to meet “the woman who captured Christian.” Because apparently he’s a mythical creature that requires capturing. We also learn that they call themselves the “sub club.” Which is…a weird phrase. Subway needs to copyright that phrase as soon as possible.

But then Susi leaves? Because this whole meeting is Leila’s show? But before Leila can say anything…Christian calls Prescott. Who gives the phone to Ana.

“What the fuck are you playing at?” he shouts. He’s seething.

Oh yes, good, scream at your wife for meeting with someone before getting your permission. It must be really hard for her to get through her work day, since she’s not allowed to talk to anyone without you giving the OK first.

Seriously, this controlling, manipulative bullshit is so out of control. How do people read this and go “ah, yes, perfect, this is the man for me!”

“I gave specific instructions which you have completely disregarded–again. Hell, Ana, I am fucking furious.”

YOU DIDN’T EVEN GIVE ANA THOSE INSTRUCTIONS. YOU GAVE THOSE INSTRUCTIONS TO HER BODY GUARD, AND ONCE AGAIN KEPT ANA OUT OF THE LOOP, BECAUSE YOU EXPECT HER TO JUST FOLLOW YOUR ORDERS. WHY DON’T YOU TRY GIVING ANA ALL THE INFORMATION YOU HAVE AND THEN ALLOWING HER TO MAKE HER OWN GODDAMNED DECISIONS BASED ON THAT INFORMATION?? SHE IS A GROWN-ASS ADULT WHO CAN MAKE HER OWN GODDAMNED DECISIONS.

“When you’re calmer, we will talk about this.”
“Don’t you hang up on me,” he hisses.
“Goodbye, Christian.” I hang up and switch off Prescott’s phone.

clapping joel mchale

I…I can’t believe it! Ana was being reasonable and openly defied Christian’s wishes! THIS IS THE BEST DAY OF MY LIFE.

Holy Shit. I don’t have long with Leila.

you just know he's gonna kill you

Like she LITERALLY KNOWS THIS. She knows Christian is going to come to her office and flip the fuck out all because she’s talking to someone he decided she shouldn’t be allowed to talk to. What is Christian afraid of? That Ana will get hurt? Ana took down Jack Hyde, a guy who was bigger and (probably) stronger than her. I think she can handle little waif-like Leila. But it won’t even come to that, because Christian’s already given Ana a body guard. Who’s already made sure Leila has no weapons. So…calm the fuck down, Christian.

So Leila says she wants to apologize and to thank Ana for not pressing charges for the whole breaking-into-Ana’s-apartment thing. She’s not supposed to be here, but she had to get some things, and she wanted to see Susi, and she also wanted to see Ana and Mr. Grey. She wants to ask Ana if that’s okay.

I gape at her, and I want to tell her that it’s not okay. I don’t want her anywhere near my husband. Why is she here? To assess the opposition? To unsettle me? Or perhaps she needs this as some sort of closure?

“A girl is here to see my husband! SHE’S TRYING TO STEAL HIM AWAY!!! Or maybe she’s just being very reasonable and wants to see him to get some closure and move on…BUT SHE’S PROBABLY TRYING TO STEAL HIM AWAY!”

Come on, Ana.

“Leila.” I flounder, exasperated. “It’s not up to me, it’s up to Christian. You’ll need to ask him. He doesn’t need my permission. He’s a grown man…most of the time.”

If only Christian could give Ana this kind of respect. Also Christian is FOR SURE not a grown man. He is a giant baby.

Apparently Christian has refused all of Leila’s attempts to see him, and all Leila wants is to thank Christian for getting her the proper treatment after her “psychotic episode.”

To my surprise, I feel no ill will toward her. It’s a revelation, and I’m glad she’s better.

“Society has told me I should hate all other women, especially my husband’s exes, but weirdly I don’t! THAT’S SO STRANGE, IT’S ALMOST LIKE HATING OTHER WOMEN JUST BECAUSE THEY’VE TOUCHED YOUR HUSBAND’S PENIS IS A RIDICULOUS WAY TO LIVE YOUR LIFE.”

Seriously. Stop the girl hate. It’s very silly and not worth it.

Ana finds out that Leila was just in town to pick up her belongings that Susi had, and then she plans to return to the East coast and continue painting. Apparently Christian already owns several of Leila’s paintings, and just never told Ana about it, because keeping secrets from his wife is literally his favorite thing to do.

Leila then starts talking about how she loved her boyfriend, the one who died earlier this year, which was the event that caused her breakdown. She also had a husband, who she loved…but I thought she left her husband for her boyfriend? I have no idea what the fuck is happening.

“I loved my husband…and one other,” she murmurs.

“MY DOG. I LOVED MY DOG SO MUCH. CAN YOU GET ME A NEW DOG, PLEASE? GOD, WHY EVEN HAVE HUSBANDS WHEN YOU CAN HAVE DOGS. LIKE SERIOUSLY.”

^The dialogue that should have happened.

“My husband.” The words are out of my mouth before I can stop them.

How the fuck does Christian con so many women into falling in love with them when he CLEARLY doesn’t care about any of them as actual people? He only sees women as property? And all of these women are like “OMG SO ROMANTIC I AM SO IN LOVE WOW”. I do not get it.

“I know. He’s very easy to love,” I whisper.

what the fuck jay z beyonce

I don’t…

I…

No. Just…no.

So Leila’s whole plan, it turns out, was to basically see Ana and thus lure Christian there to see her, because she knew he would freak out and rush over once he knew Ana was disobeying him. And this is the man they’re both violently in love with. Please, someone explain this to me.

WHOOOPS Christian just showed up.

Christian’s burning gray gaze pins first me then Leila to our chairs. His demeanor is quietly determined, but I know better, and I suspect Leila does, too. The menacing cool glint in his eyes reveals the truth–he’s emanating rage, though he hides it well. In his gray suit, with his dark tie loosened and the top button of his white shirt undone, he looks at once businesslike and casual…and hot.

judging nicolas cage

…excuse me? The man who just DISRUPTED HIS ENTIRE WORK DAY, WITH THE SOLE PURPOSE OF DISCIPLINING YOU FOR BREAKING A RULE YOU NEVER KNEW EXISTED, is…hot? His frothing rage is attractive?

WHAT

THE

FUCK

IS

WRONG

WITH

YOU.

Oh, and Christian immediately fires Prescott. What a nice guy. He then threatens to take away all of the things he’s given Leila (doctors, art school, medical insurance…) if she comes near Ana again. Such a generous guy! So nice!

“Christian–” I try again. But he silences me with a chilling look. Why is he being so unreasonable?

Because he IS unreasonable. He’s an asshole. I don’t know why it’s been 2.5 books and you still haven’t figured this out.

He then says he’ll have someone take Leila to the airport, and she’s not allowed to take one step “west of the Mississippi.” Lol okay, that’s reasonable. Leila, however, is loving this, because apparently when you’re a submissive you just love it when people are assholes to you and control every aspect of your life even when you’re no longer in a dom/sub relationship with them. Because that’s how BDSM works! You give someone total control over your entire life forever, and you can never take it back! FUN!

So then Leila leaves. And Christian turns on Ana, and is super pissed off, as always.

“You promised you wouldn’t do this.” Now his tone is accusatory.
“Do what?”
“Defy me.”
“No I didn’t. I said I’d be more considerate. I told you she was here. I had Prescott search her, and your other little friend, too. Prescott was with me the entire time. Now you’ve fired the poor woman, when she was only doing what I asked. I told you not to worry, yet here you are. I don’t remember receiving your papal bull decreeing that I couldn’t see Leila. I didn’t know that my visitors were subject to a proscribed list.”

FUCK YEAH. GO OFF, ANA.

…Except Christian just hears that and suddenly is fine. Another of his scary, constant mood swings. Seriously, she never knows when he’s going to switch from mad to sad to happy, and that’s not good. He is an active nightmare.

Ana calls him out on being a jerk to Leila, and she asks him why he was so callous towards her.

“Anastasia,” he says, as if to a child. “You don’t understand. Leila, Susannah–all of them–they were a pleasant, diverting pastime. But that’s all. You are the center of my universe. And the last time you two were in a room together, she had you at gunpoint. I don’t want her anywhere near you.”

“Listen, little baby wifey poo, you just don’t understand! These women were basically objects to me, toys to play with and throw away, and therefore I can’t be callous towards them because they’re not people! Silly Ana, thinking that women are people again.”

Like, how the fuck does that even answer the question, Christian? And why are you being so fucking patronizing???

Ana brings up the fact that Leila was ill, and now she’s better, so it’s fine, but to Christian it still isn’t fine.

“I don’t want you tainted with my old life.”

Stop talking about your past BDSM relationships as if they were some dirty, terrible thing? I mean, the way YOU did them, they WERE terrible, but that’s because you’re a terrible person. Christian acts like his relationships with his subs were these sinful things, and then he meets Ana and it’s all pure and good, even though he still does all the BDSM stuff with Ana? I just don’t understand his character development (or lack thereof) at all.

“Christian…you are who you are because of your old life, your new life, whatever. What touches you, touches me. I accepted that when I agreed to marry you, because I love you.”

YOU SHOULD HAVE HAD THIS CONVERSATION BEFORE YOU GOT MARRIED BUT OKAY.

“She didn’t hurt me. She loves you, too.”
“I don’t give a fuck.”

What a nice guy!

“Look, Christian, I don’t think Leila and I will be swapping recipes and knitting patterns any time soon.”

The gender roles are strong with this one.

“But I didn’t think you’d be so heartless to her.”
His eyes frost. “I told you once, I don’t have a heart,” he mutters.

UUUUGGGHHH THIS IS GETTING SO OLD.

WE KNOW YOU HATE YOURSELF, CHRISTIAN. I HATE YOU TOO. CONGRATULATIONS. GET OVER IT.

Also you clearly do have a heart because you’re in love with Ana? None of what you’re saying makes any sense. I get it, you hate yourself, and your low self-esteem is very tragic and understandable, but that doesn’t excuse your fucking actions. You’re still a terrible person, regardless of what happened to you in the past.

uuuuuuggggggggghhhhhhhh and now Ana is trying to convince Christian that he does have a heart and is worth loving.

star wars look at all the fucks I don't give

star wars look at them anakin

I could not give less fucks right now.

[also May the Fourth be with you.]

“This discussion is over. Let’s go home.”
I glance at my watch. It’s four twenty-three. I have work to do. “It’s too early,” I mutter.
“Home,” he insists.

CHRISTIAN YOU DON’T GET TO FUCKING DICTATE WHEN ANA LEAVES WORK. YOU’RE NOT HER FUCKING BOSS (technically…even though you own the company…) YOU’RE NOT FUCKING ALLOWED TO JUST ORDER HER TO GO HOME.

“I’m tired of having the same argument with you.”
He frowns, as if he doesn’t understand.
“You know,” I elucidate, “I do something you don’t like, and you think of some way to get back at me. Usually involving some of your kinky fuckery, which is either mind-blowing or cruel.” I shrug, resigned. This is exhausting and confusing.

THIS IS TEXTBOOK SIGNS OF AN ABUSIVE RELATIONSHIP.

CHRISTIAN BLAMES ANA FOR HIS OWN ABUSIVE BEHAVIOR. HE ACTS LIKE HE HAS TO PUNISH HER FOR DISOBEYING HIM, EVEN THOUGH HE NEVER TOLD HER WHAT THE RULES WERE SO HOW CAN SHE KNOW WHEN SHE’S DISOBEYING HIM?

THIS BOOK ROMANTICIZES AN ABUSIVE RELATIONSHIP.

I DON’T KNOW HOW MANY MORE TIMES I CAN SAY THIS.

“Mind-blowing?” he asks.
What?
“Usually, yes.”
“What was mind-blowing?” he asks, his eyes now shimmering with amused sensual curiosity.

FUCK YOU CHRISTIAN. YOU ARE COMPLETELY DERAILING THIS ENTIRE CONVERSATION BECAUSE YOU DON’T WANT TO OWN UP TO THE FACT THAT YOU’RE AN ABUSIVE PIECE OF SHIT.

AND THEN THEY JUST START TALKING ABOUT ALL THE “KINKY FUCKERY” THAT ANA LIKED. AND THEY COMPLETELY IGNORE THE VERY IMPORTANT DISCUSSION THEY WERE JUST HAVING.

FUCK.

Oh for the love of god, now Christian is suggesting that they have kinky sex IN ANA’S OFFICE. WHILE HER STAFF IS STILL VERY MUCH IN THE BUILDING, IN FACT THEY ARE RIGHT OUTSIDE HER OFFICE DOOR.

Then Ana has a weird daydream about Christian leaving her behind just the way he left Leila behind.

“No…” The words are out of my mouth in whispered horror before I can stop them.
“Yes,” he says, and grasping my chin, he leans down and plants a tender kiss on my lips.

HAS E.L. JAMES NEVER FUCKING HEARD OF CONSENT BEFORE IN HER ENTIRE LIFE? ANA CLEARLY SAID NO, AND THEN CHRISTIAN SAYS YES AND KISSES HER, AND THAT’S SO GROSS AND CREEPY AND I DON’T EVEN KNOW WHAT TO SAY ANYMORE.

“Oh, Christian, you scare me sometimes.”

YEAH BECAUSE HE’S A SCARY PIECE OF SHIT WHO DOESN’T CARE ABOUT CONSENT OR ANY OF THE RULES OF BDSM RELATIONSHIPS.

OH, BUT SHE’S NOT SCARED BECAUSE OF HIS MOOD SWINGS, OR ANY OF HIS OTHER TERRIFYING PERSONALITY TRAITS.

“You could turn away from her so easily…”
He frowns. “And you think I might turn away from you, Ana? Why the hell would you think that?”

ANA HE IS A PSYCHOPATH WHO TREATS WOMEN LIKE OBJECTS AND WANTS TO CONTROL YOUR ENTIRE LIFE AND WANTS TO PUNISH YOU WHENEVER YOU DISOBEY ONE OF HIS ARBITRARY RULES. HE IS AN ABUSIVE FUCKHEAD AND YOU SHOULD BE AFRAID OF HIM HURTING YOU. YOU SHOULD NOT BE AFRAID OF HIM LEAVING YOU. THAT SHOULD BE THE LAST THING YOU’RE WORRIED ABOUT. THAT WOULD ACTUALLY BE A BLESSING.

Oh, but now she wants him to kiss her and take her home. Because she can’t actually stand up to him for 2 fucking seconds without backing down. Fuck.

uuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuUUUGGGHHHH AND THEN IT CUTS RIGHT TO A SEX SCENE.

WHY.

WHY AM I TORTURING MYSELF LIKE THIS.

Ugh he has her tied up and is teasing her and then eating her out. Cool. But she’s not allowed to orgasm? I literally don’t care. I think I’m one of the few people reading these books for the awful, awful plot, and all these sex scenes are just gross and boring, and they’re all basically the same.

The sex is mind-blowing, as per usual. Good for them.

But afterwards, Ana demands that Christian admit that he still cares about Leila’s well-being. Because apparently she needs to know this because if he DOESN’T care then he’s just a heartless bastard. I mean, even I know he’s not a heartless bastard, he’s just a regular bastard. He very much has a heart, he’s just a nightmare.

And now we get another set of flirty emails while they’re at work, talking about how great their sex is. Cool. I literally could not care less.

While at work, Ana gets a call from José’s dad, Mr. Rodriguez.

“Honey, I’m sorry to call you at work. It’s Ray.” His voice falters.
“What is it? What’s happened?” My heart leaps into my throat.
“Ray’s been in an accident.”
Oh, no. Daddy. I stop breathing.
“He’s in the hospital. You’d better get here quick.”

End of Chapter Sixteen

Ugh, can we please stop doing this? Stop injuring/killing people just to manufacture drama in your boring, plot-driven story? I mean, if a character gets injured or killed fine, it’s whatever, but this feels SUPER FORCED, and it feels like E.L. James knew her story was getting boring and had to spice it up a little bit, and instead of making it interesting by developing her characters better, she decides to throw in a big plot event to try and cling to what little interest her readers have left.

We haven’t heard anything about Ray in MANY chapters. If this accident is supposed to be an important plot point that WASN’T just invented to manufacture fake drama, we should have heard about Ray far more recently. Even if Ana just mentioned something about him, like she thought about him in this chapter, or she thought about how she is meaning to call him, that would make this plot twist better, because this accident wouldn’t just come out of left field and blind-side the reader.

Basically, this accident with Ray is a cheap trick that James is using to try and sustain the reader’s interest because she knows that her characters are boring and under-developed and her plot in this book is bland and all over the place. This is a very fanfiction-y problem to have.

But I guess we’ll have to wait until the next chapter to see how truly awful this plot is going to end up being.

Thank you guys SO MUCH for all your patience, as always! No guarantees on when the next chapter will be out…hopefully before the end of the month, but lord knows I’m terrible at updating this. But I must charge forward! For you readers! And for the good of the realm!

Thanks for reading! Up next…chapter 17…out of 25 total chapters (plus an epilogue…plus 3 bonus chapters…ugh).

Caitlin Liveblogs Fifty Shades Freed: Chapter 15

[disclaimer: I don’t own any of the gifs used in this post. If you see a gif that you created and would either like credit for it or would like it taken down, please let me know.]

God I hate these books. But, the show must go on! So here’s another chapter.

RECAP: Elliot proposes to Kate, and she says yes (what a shocker). They go to a club and the girls sexy-dance while the boys stay sitting. While Ana is dancing, she feels someone come up and start dancing behind her, and she thinks it’s Christian, but it’s NOT CHRISTIAN, it’s some blonde douchebag. Ana gets really mad and demands that he stop touching her, to which the douchebag replies: “Come on, Sugar, it’s just some fun.” Ana slaps him (thank GOD), and then immediately Christian is there and punches the guy. Ana then starts feeling bad for asserting her right to personal space and insists that the REAL reason she slapped the guy was because she knew that Christian would be mad that someone touched his property. Because “wife” means “property of man” apparently. The group leaves the club, and apparently Ana is trashed. Christian puts her to bed and then goes to make some phone calls. Ana thinks about how they’ve made “progress,” although clearly no progress has been made and honestly I think that’s just drunk-brain talking.

It’s only 2 in the afternoon but I honestly might go open a beer to get through this chapter…

Chapter Fifteen

Ana wakes up and is magically not hungover from the night before. Are you kidding me? She was too drunk to take off her goddamned shoes, and she wakes up feeling fine?

I drank too much–boy did I drink too much. I’m amazed Christian let me.

Oh right, your husband also controls what you eat and drink! What a healthy, non-manipulative relationship! Hah hah hah! #whatthefuck

I smile as I remember him putting me to bed. That was sweet, real sweet, and unexpected.

What the fuck did you expect him to do, leave you on the floor somewhere? How the fuck are you surprised that he put you to bed when you were wasted. On what planet is that “unexpected” from your goddamned husband. Let’s all give Christian a sticker to congratulate him for being a DECENT FUCKING HUMAN BEING. WOW, SO IMPRESSIVE.

They start discussing what happened last night, and Christian is still mad that some guy touched Ana, which is how anyone should react to a situation like that, but since I know that he’s mad because some guy touched his property and isn’t mad because someone invaded his wife’s personal space and touched her without her permission, he’s still a fucking asshole. Right emotion, wrong motive.

Ana of course downplays the whole event, probably because she’s scared of what he’ll do to her if he remains angry. They talk about how her palm is still red and sore because of her slapping that guy, and this leads into a conversation about Christian spanking Ana, which I really hope doesn’t happen because I honestly can’t stomach any gross, manipulative sex right now.

“That’s quite a right arm you have there, Mrs. Grey.”
“You’d do well to remember that, Mr. Grey.”
“Oh really?” He rolls suddenly so that he’s fully on top of me, pressing me into the mattress, holding my wrists above my head. He gazes down at me.
“I’d fight you any day, Mrs. Grey. In fact, subduing you in bed is a fantasy of mine.”

let me stop you right there

Ughhhhhhhh this whole relationship is a goddamned mess. Of course you fantasize about subduing your wife in bed, because you get off on CONTROLLING AND HARMING WOMEN.

“I thought you subdued me all the time.” I gasp as he nibbles my earlobe.
“Hmm…but I’d like some resistance,” he murmurs, his nose skirting my jaw.

You only want “resistance” so you can feel more in-control, Christian. I get that this is a pretty popular fantasy for a lot of people, but given your past history of abuse, manipulation and dangerous fantasies/tendencies, something tells me that this “fantasy” goes a lot further than just play. In fact, wanting “resistance” makes this seem an awful lot like a rape fantasy, which, coming from Christian, is REALLY FUCKING SCARY.

What’s this about? Brawling? Fantasy? Will he hurt me? My inner goddess shakes her head–Never.

HAVE YOU FORGOTTEN ABOUT ALL THE TIMES HE HAS ACTUALLY HURT YOU? LIKE THE BELT? HAVE YOU FORGOTTEN THE TIME WHEN HE BEAT YOU WITH A BELT SO HARD IT MADE YOU BREAK UP WITH HIM?

If you’re married to someone and you constantly wonder “will they hurt me?” YOU NEED TO LEAVE THAT PERSON. THAT IS A DANGEROUS PERSON. THIS IS NOT ROMANTIC, GOD DAMMIT.

Ugh, now they’re going to “play” and Ana is going to resist him. Ughhhhhhhh.

[I’m going to put a trigger warning here for rape, because this next part might be hard for some people to read. Lord knows I’m having enough trouble typing it.]

Christian makes a low, sexy sound in his throat and moves, tossing me onto the bed beside him. I cry out in surprise, then he’s on top of me, and I start to struggle as he makes a grab for my hands. Roughly, I place my hands on his chest, pushing with all my might, trying to move him, while he endeavors to pry my legs apart with his knee.
I continue pushing at his chest–jeez he’s heavy– but he doesn’t flinch, doesn’t freeze as he once might have. He’s enjoying this! He attempts to grab my wrists, and finally captures one, despite my valiant attempt to twist it free. It’s my sore hand, so I surrender it to him, but grab his hair with my other hand and pull hard.
“Ah!” He yanks his head free and gazes down at me, his eyes wild and carnal.

Now, again, I know rape-play can be something that occurs in safe, consensual BDSM relationships, and is even a fantasy for some people, but given Christian’s history and temperament, this part of the book is EXTREMELY SCARY. They didn’t discuss any safe-words here, and if she says stop, I have ZERO faith that he’ll actually stop. Ana does seem to be enjoying this playing, and she gave the whole thing the go-ahead from the beginning, so at least this part is consensual, but I’m still very nervous. This whole scene sounds like a vivid description of rape, and that’s alarming.

So after all this, Christian suddenly switches to being tender and gentle, which is very confusing for Ana. She wants some rough sex, and he isn’t giving it to her, so she fights him off and basically demands sex, and Christian complies. This whole interaction is so strange.

Afterwards they talk a little bit about it, and it’s revealed that this particular fantasy never took place with any of Christian’s other submissives, because they weren’t allowed to touch him, while Ana is. Ana brings up the fact that Mrs. Robinson could touch him, and Christian says yes but that was different, specifically “bad different,” and he finally seems to understand that his relationship with Mrs. Robinson was wrong and fucked up, so that’s nice. And then they have sex again, but we don’t have to read about it.

They finally head downstairs, where everyone is having breakfast. Christian is outside talking to one of the housekeepers, and is swinging a cane around for some reason? Mia seems mad at Ethan (Kate’s brother). Kate and Ana gush about how they’re going to be sisters. Yawn. Then they all fly back home.

Lots of uninteresting Ana-Narration happening now. We’re reminded that they have a meeting with Gia, the architect who’s designing their house and who tried to seduce Christian. We’re also reminded that Jack Hyde is still in jail, but may have an accomplice on the loose. Gia tells Ana that it was a coincidence that she was in Aspen at the same time as them, so I guess nothing sneaky was going on with her and Elliot, which is good.

Ana starts thinking about how being with his family seems to relax Christian.

Holy crap! Maybe that’s the answer. Maybe he needs his own family.

“Hmm…my husband has scary, unpredictable mood swings, and I’m never sure if he’s going to hurt me or not…I know what will fix this! Let’s have babies!”

fuck that rpattz

Ana concludes, however, that they’re not ready for a family. Thank. Fucking. God.

Ana asks Christian if he “misses it” (referring to the dom/sub stuff, and the caning and whatnot). Christian says he doesn’t. Ana says she wouldn’t mind “playing” with like a flogger or a riding crop, and Christian says maybe, but “right now, I’d like some good old-fashioned vanilla.”

Ana goes back to work. And what do you know! They immediately start emailing each other. She is a terrible employee. DO YOUR FUCKING JOB, YOU DICK. STOP EMAILING YOUR GODDAMNED HUSBAND EVERY TWO SECONDS.

Apparently the two of them have some fancy dinner to go to at night, and Ana says that she’s sure that Christian will find a way to “spice up the dinner.” Ugh. I’m sure it’ll be gross.

And then we just…skip over the dinner? Apparently they did the silver-balls-trick again, where Ana has them in her hoo-hah all night and apparently it’s all very sexy. We get more emails the next day about how enjoyable it was.

More emails. Apparently Jack Hyde “has been refused bail and remanded in custody. He’s charged with attempted kidnap and arson.” Ana asks if security will be lightened up, but Christian refuses and says “no arguments.” Ana tells him to “stow his twitchy palm,” to which he replies that he might have to “do something” about his twitching palm tonight. Ughhhhhhh.

UGH OH MY GOD WE HAVE TO READ MORE FUCKING EMAILS.

I GET IT. TIME IS PASSING. JUST SKIP THESE DAYS. I DON’T CARE ABOUT THEIR WEIRD EMAIL-FLIRTING AT WORK TALKING ABOUT THEIR SEX LIVES. STOP IT.

Seriously, like 5 days have passed entirely in emails. Also apparently Ana’s birthday is coming up on September 10th, and it’s currently September 5th? Cool. Don’t care.

Hannah taps on my door.
“Come in.”
Prescott is hovering outside. Odd…
“Hi, Ana,” says Hannah. “There’s a Leila Williams here to see you? She says it’s personal.”
“Leila Williams? I don’t know a…” My mouth goes dry, and Hannah’s eyes widen at my expression.
Leila? Fuck. What does she want?

dun dun dun

End of Chapter Fifteen

So Leila is randomly here? That’s…sort of interesting? I guess? Maybe this is where Leila convinces Ana that Christian is a dangerous douche-bottle and Ana runs away with her to join a gang of women who beat up abusive shitbags.

Too bad it’s going to be something INFINITELY more boring.

Thanks for reading, y’all! You guys are all really great. No guarantees on when the next chapter will be up, but I’ll try to do at least two this month. We’ll see how that works out.