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Jenny Reads 50 Shades of Midnight Sun: Grey, Saturday, May 21, 2011 or “THE BIGGEST CHAPTER EVER: PART ONE”

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Welcome back, everyone. Because this SINGLE CHAPTER takes up 9% of the total book and is, according to these Kindle page numbers, over fifty pages long, I’ll be breaking it up into four or five recaps to match its corresponding chapters in the first book. That way none of us feel like we’re running a marathon in a wool suit right after winning a pie eating contest.

I feel like this almost goes without saying, but CW: Rape. Because the “hero” of this book doesn’t understand what consent is. But rape is mentioned a lot in this recap.

This day in history: The world was supposed to end. Honestly, considering how hugely popular this book became in 2011, the apocalypse wouldn’t have been the worst thing to happen to us.

If you want to read along with my recaps of the original series, chapter five is here.

When last we met, Christian Grey had just taken Ana to the second location, his hotel room, where he mostly undressed her.

Nearly two hours later, I come to bed. It’s just after 1:45. She’s fast asleep and hasn’t moved from where I left her. I strip, pull on my PJ pants and a T-shirt, and climb in beside her. She’s comatose; it’s unlikely she’s going to thrash around and touch me.

If this book had come out before the others, I would have thought this was foreshadowing that Grey’s kink was necrophilia role play.

I hesitate for a moment as the darkness swells within me,

A photo of Christian Grey from the movie. Text reads: "Crawling in my skin/this drunk girl is asleep"

but it doesn’t surface and I know it’s because I’m watching the hypnotic rise and fall of her chest and I’m breathing in sync with her.

Are you having a hard time visualizing what breathing is like, dear reader? I know I was. So I’m glad that the author included instructions:

In. Out. In. Out. In. Out.

That clears it up, thanks so much.

For seconds, minutes, hours, I don’t know, I watch her.

You’re really bad at telling time, mate.

Christian describes her lovely face, her dark eyelashes, her white teeth…he basically itemizes her appearance, and he’s apparently waaaaay into making lists:

It’s arousing, very arousing. Finally I fall into a deep and dreamless slumber.

And we’re back to the “I don’t know how to end this section, so my characters go to sleep” technique. Look. I don’t care if your characters get into bed together and the chapter ends there. I don’t care if the sleep is implied. But there’s no reason this section couldn’t have ended with the seconds, minutes, hours line. Even though it would still be unreasonably creepy.

Then again, I think I used the sleep/awake thing a few times in First Time so maybe this isn’t the hill I want to die on.

There’s a section break. I really appreciate that E.L. gives us time off while they’re sleeping, considering how often we’re subjected to every mundane detail of their stupid, boring lives. Christian wakes up and sees that it’s 7:43, and he wonders when the last time he slept that late was. We get it, he’s an early riser, as is befitting a God.

I have never slept with a woman. I’ve fucked many, but to wake up beside an alluring young woman is a new and stimulating experience.

Why does Christian’s internal monologue read like dialogue from The Big Bang Theory? Like, the way this is phrased, I’m expecting a pause for the laugh track because the wording is so clunky and clinical.

My cock agrees.

Picture of a rooter with the text "Crawling in my skin/My cock's a sentient being"

Christian gets up and puts on his running clothes, then gets his laptop and checks his e-mail. But it takes him longer than it normally does, because there’s a beautiful unconscious girl in the bedroom. He remembers she’ll be hungover, so he gets a glass of orange juice and takes it to her.

She’s still asleep when I enter, her hair a riot of mahogany spread across her pillow, and the covers have slipped below her waist.

angry wolf meme with Effie Trinket's hair photoshopped onto it. Text reads: "That is mahogany!"

 Her T-Shirt has ridden up, exposing her belly and her navel. The sight stirs my body once more.

This is not how people think. People do not think, “The sight stirs my body.” People think, “It turned me on,” or “my cock got hard.” Grey thinks he’s not a romantic hero, but I honestly believe that the only person on earth who would think, “The sight stirs my body once more,” would be Mr. Darcy, when he was really trying to think dirty about something.

I have to get out of here before I do something I’ll regret.

Like what? Rape her? Because she’s still unconscious. Even kissing her awake or something would be creepy assault at this point, because she can’t consent.  But maybe I’m giving Chedward too much credit in assuming he would feel bad for raping someone.

After Christian’s run, he comes back to find that Taylor has dropped off clothes for Ana.

From what I can see, Taylor has done well–and all before 9:00.

So, Taylor must have gone to Walmart, because most retail clothing stores don’t open until 10 AM. So luxury. Much billionaire.

Here’s a weird thing:

Poring over the room-service menu, I decide to order some food. She’ll be hungry when she wakes, but I have no idea what she’ll eat, so in a rare moment of indulgence I order a selection from the breakfast menu.

Okay does he mean that since he doesn’t know what she’ll eat, he also orders something? So they can like, trade? Or does he just not generally buy women breakfast? That would be just incredibly rude of him, if he didn’t. Not because I think a lady should always be treated to a post coital breakfast, but because he’s a freaking billionaire. And “rare moment of indulgence” my ass, Mr. Grey. Your housekeeper cleans your disposable stainless steel butt plugs.

Christian decides to wake Ana up, but she’s already awake, and she’s already drunk the juice and taken the pills.

She pales as I saunter into the room.

Keep it casual, Grey. You don’t want to be charged with kidnapping.

I’ve heard that the easiest way to prevent this is abstinence. Abstinence from kidnapping people.

“How did I get here?” she asks, as though she’s afraid of the answer.

Reassure her, Grey.

Yeah, reassure the frighten woman who goes pale when she sees you and seems afraid now.

“After you passed out, I didn’t want to risk the leather upholstery in my car, taking you all the way to your apartment. So I brought you here.”

Ah, the romantic sentiment every woman dreams of hearing.

“Did you undress me?” “Yes.” Who else would have undressed you?

In a lot of cases, women prefer to undress themselves.

“We didn’t–” she whispers, staring at her hands.

Christ, what kind of animal does she think I am?

She probably doesn’t think you’re an animal. She probably thinks you’re a kidnapper/rapist. I know, I know. Ana doesn’t think any of these things, and we know that because we’ve read her side. But this book isn’t making a great case for her perception of Grey. It’s really serving to make her seem stupider here.

“Anastasia, you were comatose. Necrophilia is not my thing.” My tone is dry. “I like my women sentient and receptive.”

Not, “You were comatose. That would be rape, and I am not a rapist.” Not, “I respect you too much to treat you like an object I can use.” But, “Don’t worry, you were safe only because the idea of having sex with a passed out drunk girl didn’t turn me on. But boy howdy, if it had!”

She sags with relief, which makes me wonder if this has happened to her before, that she’s passed out and woken up in a stranger’s bed and found out he’s fucked her without her consent.

I believe what you mean is, “if she’s been raped.”

Maybe that’s the photographer’s modus operandi. The thought is disturbing. But I recall her confession last night–that she’d never been drunk before. Thank God she hasn’t made a habit of this.

Fucked her without her consent. Thank God she hasn’t made a habit of this. LET’S DISCUSS THIS, SHALL WE?

This book was one golden opportunity to redesign a character who routinely dismissed the heroine’s every boundary. It was the chance to prove to those who hadn’t seen the miraculous romantic enigma that Christian Grey was supposed to be but instead saw an abuser and a rapist, that he really did have hidden depths and could be a man they would want to fall in love with if they saw into his soul through their own eyes the way Ana saw him through hers. Yet despite all the criticism her books received with regard to how they perpetuated rape culture, E.L. James chooses to portray Christian Grey as a man who worries about whether or not the heroine has been raped, but who can’t say the word, and suggests he would actually blame her if it had happened.

Why can’t Christian Grey say, “which makes me wonder if this has happened to her before, that she’s passed out and woken up in a strangers bed and found that she’s been raped”?

Because Christian Grey is a rapist. We know this, because we see him do it to Ana in the third book with the orgasm denial scene. He doesn’t obtain her consent, he uses a wand vibrator on her for a long ass time (which, you know, becomes painful after a while) and then gets upset with her when she uses their safe word to end the already nonconsensual activity. And people have argued that because he stops, it’s not rape, but that’s just absurd. He’s already engaged in a sexual activity with her (that in her limited experience she has no idea is even a thing or what to expect from it) without her enthusiastic consent. Yet here he has the balls to not just talk about rape, but talk about it without even using the word.

Ana apologizes for everything. For some reason. It was her fault that Christian overstepped his bounds to track her down. He tells her it’s okay because it was “diverting,” again depicting her as an object for his amusement.

“You didn’t have to track me down with whatever James Bond gadgetry you’re developing for the highest bidder.”

Whoa! now she’s pissed . Why?

So, Christian Grey’s boundless disregard of women continues as he boggles at the idea that anyone would get mad over something as trivial as stalking. But it’s not like he doesn’t know that it was wrong of him to track her down:

“First, the technology to track cell phones is available over the Internet.”

Well, the Deep Net…

“Second, my company does not invest or manufacture any kind of surveillance devices.”

So, he’s aware that you can access that technology only by going through illegal channels, and he justifies his use of this unethical tactic by stating that his company doesn’t manufacture products to facilitate this type of stalking. Well buddy, the technology to shoot someone exists, so I assume it’s okay to do that so long as I don’t make the gun myself?

My temper is fraying, but I’m on a roll. “And third, if I hadn’t come to get you, you’d probably be waking up in the photographer’s bed, and from what I can remember, you weren’t overly enthused about him pressing his suit.”

Verily, I was protecting your honor, m’lady!

And who wants a wrinkly suit?

Seriously, though, this is one of those “the end doesn’t justify the means” scenarios. In the first place, Ana being raped by José wasn’t a certain. Yes, he drunkenly tried to kiss her, but after she sprayed vomit everywhere, he was pretty much out. Plus, even drunk guys can resist the temptation to rape someone. True story. And Christian didn’t care about rescuing Ana so much as he’s worried about José getting to her first.

Ana makes fun of Christian for talking like he came out of a book, and he thinks about how “beguiling” it is for Ana to make fun of his archaic speech. I guess Ana was right to describe Chedward as mercurial in her books, because there’s absolutely no consistency to his character. Some of the times she laughs at him or pokes fun at him he gets confused and angry. Other times, she’s refreshing and beguiling. No wonder she spends the entire first series walking on eggshells.

And though it may not be to my advantage, I’m compelled to warn her that there’s nothing chivalrous or courtly about me. “Anastasia, I don’t think so. Dark knight, maybe.”

Abed from Community dressed as Batman
I thought we’d already covered this. Abed is Batman now.

Christian asks Ana if she ate the night before, and tells her that eating before going on a bender is like, rule number one of getting hammered. Ana doesn’t appreciate him scolding her:

“You’re lucky I’m just scolding you.”

“What do you mean?” ”

Well, if you were mine, you wouldn’t be able to sit down for a week after the stunt you pulled yesterday. You didn’t eat, you got drunk, you put yourself at risk.” The fear in my gut surprises me; such irresponsible, risk-taking behavior.

You know what else is pretty risky? Sitting in a hotel room with a guy who’s saying he would beat you as punishment for going out with your friends and engaging in behavior that’s only considered “risky” when women do it.

Ana tells him she would have been fine because she was with Kate, and he asks if she would have been fine with “the photographer.” Ana says he was just drunk and out of line, but Christian doesn’t trust her judgment and implies that “someone” should beat José up.

An image of her shackled to my bench, peeled gingerroot inserted into her ass so she can’t clench her buttocks, comes to mind, followed by judicious use of a belt or strap. Yeah… That would teach her not to be so irresponsible.

Figging! I guess E.L. finally bothered to Google “BDSM” and found something that wasn’t in the movie Secretary. Good for her.

Christian asks Ana if she wants to take the first shower, and she gapes at him because, you know, OMG SHOWER MEANS NAKED TEEHEE.

She’s hard to resist, and I grant myself permission to touch her, tracing the line of her cheek with my thumb. Her breath catches in her throat as I stroke her soft bottom lip.

He grants himself permission to touch her. In this whole process, from her passing out to him bringing her to this point, her permission has never occurred to him. And unless Ana invests in a lot of chapstick, it’s pretty much impossible that her constantly bitten bottom lip is anything other than raw and scabby.

Christian tells Ana that her breakfast will be there in fifteen minutes and goes into the shower.

I’m half tempted to jerk off, but the familiar fear of discovery and disclosure, from an earlier time in my life, stops me.

It’s called a lock. They go on doors. You’re rich, get both.

Elena would not be pleased.

So here’s a question. Would Elena not be pleased that he didn’t jack off? Or would she not be pleased that he didn’t jack off because he was afraid to get caught? And what’s this about disclosure? I really hope this book explains a little more about his relationship with Elena and how it fucked him up this bad, but I know it won’t because that would make it interesting.

As the water cascades over my head I reflect on my latest interaction with the challenging Miss Steele. She’s still here, in my bed, so she cannot find me completely repulsive. I noticed the way her breath caught in her throat, and how her gaze followed me around the room.

 

Jame Gumb/Buffalo Bill in Silence of The Lambs, lowering the basket into the pit
Well, she’s still in my pit, so she cannot find me completely repulsive.

And of course, this line of reasoning goes straight to whether or not she would make a good sex toy submissive.

It’s obvious she knows nothing of the lifestyle. She couldn’t even say “fuck” or “sex” or whatever bookish college students use as a euphemism for fucking these days.

You know, I know my share of people who are in “the lifestyle.” And I rarely hear them spouting off about it in situations where it’s not generally discussed. Say, when they go to coffee with someone they don’t know very well. Or when they’re at work. Or when they wake up disoriented in a hotel room with someone who admits to undressing them while they were unconscious. Chedward assumes Ana doesn’t know anything about BDSM because she’s never talked about it, but when, exactly, was she supposed to casually bring it up in conversation?

And maybe the reason she didn’t say “fuck” or “sex” when she asked “We didn’t–” was because you interrupted her, as implied by the fact that her dialogue ended on an em dash right before yours began.

Chedward laments to himself that Ana’s only sexual experiences thus far must have been “fumbling” that she’s been “subjected” to, and therefore not satisfactory. And he can tell all this because of how she responded to being basically kidnapped by a stranger.

He decides to see how breakfast goes before asking her if she wants to be his submissive. What a gentleman. There’s a paragraph detailing every step of getting out of the shower, then he goes back into the bedroom, in a towel, I assume, because him putting pants on isn’t mentioned. When he comes out of the bathroom, she’s looking for her clothes.

She looks up like the archetypal startled fawn, all long legs and big eyes.

Because she thought she would have time to escape. And since when are fawns an archetype? I feel like 70% of the words in this book are used because they seemed smart at the time, but the actual definitions weren’t important.

He tells Ana that he sent her clothes to the laundry because they were covered in vomit, but he had new clothes bought for her.

Grabbing the bag, she dodges around me, darts into the bathroom, and locks the door.

Hmm…she couldn’t get into the bathroom quick enough.

Away from me.

At this point, my stomach actually aches from laughing, because I’m trying to imagine what would have happened if this book had been released before the others. It would have flopped. We would have never heard of E.L. James. Because instead of an enigmatic, sexy romantic hero, she’s delivered unto us a confused stalker/kidnapper who doesn’t realize he’s stalking or kidnapping. It reminds me of Jonathan Coulton’s song “Skullcrusher Mountain,” in which the mad scientist can’t figure out why the heroine doesn’t like the genetic monster he’s “ruined a pony” to create for her.

The room service arrives, and of course it’s two beautiful young women delivering the food and they can’t stop looking at Chedward:

“Just call room service when you want the table cleared, sir,” Miss Dark Eyes says with a coquettish look, as if she’s offering more.

Newsflash, Chedward: she has to smile at you. It’s her job.

Remember how in the original trilogy, every woman who gives Chedward a sideways glance gets some version of “Miss [physical trait]” slapped on her by Ana? Isn’t it funny how similar Ana and Christian’s internal monologues are? The fact that this device shows up in both books makes me feel like it’s author intrusion. It’s not Ana or Christian who are annoyed by feminine attention toward him, it’s the author’s irritation that any character other than her self-insert (yeah, I’m going there. Fight me) would dare lust after him. On the flip-side, she has to prove that he’s attractive enough to be a trophy, so she has to include these vile bitches who want to steal him away. This attitude creeps into both narratives in the exact same form: woman’s innocuous action is interpreted as flirtation with Christian, assumed flirtation is rebuffed, woman is criticized or branded with a critical nickname.

In summation, it’s not Chedward or Ana hating on these women, it’s E.L., because he’s hers, all hers, and that’s why both characters have the same voice in those situations.

While Christian waits for Ana, he gets a text from Elliot saying that Kate wants to know if Ana is alive.

I chuckle, somewhat mollified that Ana’s so-called friend is thinking about her.

Who is Kate, E.L.? How did she hurt you?

Ana comes out and of course she looks beautiful in the clothes Taylor picked. Christian tells her that he texted Elliot to let Kate know Ana is alive, then they sit down to the massive breakfast he’s apparently ordered.

I didn’t know what you liked, so I ordered a selection from the breakfast menu,” I mutter by way of an apology.

“That’s very profligate of you,” she says.

Or it’s polite. But then again, he did just kidnap you, Ana, so I’ll give you this one. But sending you the books and buying you the clothes would probably be a better example of his profligate behavior.

Ana starts eating the equivalent of a Ron Swanson afternoon snack, and Chedward thinks about how good it is that she’s eating.

“Your hair’s very damp,” I observe.

“I couldn’t find the hair dryer,” she says, embarrassed.

She’ll get sick.

Was she not supposed to get her hair wet in the shower? Is that going to be against the rules in your submissive contract? This exchanged boggled me in the last recap, too. Like, does his hair never get wet? And how does a twenty-seven or twenty-eight year old not already know that wet hair doesn’t get you sick? I was under the impression that this was something everyone born after 1950 already knew.

He tells her that color of the blouse he paid for suits her.

She stares down at her fingers.

“You know, you really should learn to take a compliment.”

Perhaps she doesn’t get many…but why? She’s gorgeous in an understated way.

While I try to wrap my head around how something can be excessive (as implied by gorgeous) but also subtle (as implied by understated), let’s move on to the “learn to take a compliment” bullshit. Men who say that only say it when women don’t respond to their compliments. When a man compliments a woman, she should obviously show slavish appreciation. Male approval is the thing women crave most in life, after all.

“Why did you send me the books, Christian?”

Because I wanted to see you again, and here you are…

But she’s not there because of the books. She’s there because you brought her there while she was unconscious. Nothing about her presence in your hotel room was her choice, apart from the fact that she didn’t climb out the bathroom window. Christian tells Ana that he gave her the books to warn her away from him:

“I felt I owed you an apology and a warning. Anastasia, I’m not a hearts-and-flowers kind of man. I don’t do romance. My tastes are very singular. You should steer clear of me. There’s something about you, though, and I’m finding it impossible to stay away. But I think you’ve figured that out already.”

“‘It would be more…prudent for you not to be my friend,’ he explained. ‘But I’m tired of trying to stay away from you, Bella.'”

Just saying.

I had to quote this dialogue so I could make fun of it again. HOW IS SOMETHING “VERY” SINGULAR? IT’S EITHER SINGULAR OR IT’S NOT! YOU CAN’T GET MORE SINGULAR. IF YOU’RE LESS SINGULAR, YOU’RE NOT SINGULAR ANYMORE. That phrase is a gift from above, my friends.

“Then don’t,” she whispers.

My daughter was watching Twilight yesterday and I heard the following:

Edward: “I don’t have the strength to stay away from you anymore.”

Bella: “Then don’t.”

The plagiarism is so blatant. In the break I had from thinking about these stupid books, I’d forgotten that. Luckily for E.L. James so did everyone in publishing, the movie industry, and all of her readers. She’ll just get a pass for the rest of time. I can’t wait until she has to write an actual book of her own that isn’t ripped off from Stephenie Meyer. I really look forward to seeing what she comes up with.

They have the “Enlighten me, then” conversation, in which she asks him if he’s celibate, and he’s says he’s not, but we get his added thought:

And if you’d let me tie you up I’d prove it to you right now.

Does it really matter if she lets you? Because you’re not just “not a hearts-and-flowers kind of man,” you’re also “not an enthusiastic consent kind of man,” either. Christian asks Ana what her plans are for the next few days, and she remembers, hey, she has a life outside of being a hostage and she has to work and pack for her move. She tells Christian she’s moving to Seattle and applying for jobs, and he asks her if she’s applied to work for him yet. Then she bites her lip and he tells her he wants to bite her lip, but he can’t:

“Because I’m not going to touch you, Anastasia–not until I have your written consent to do so.”

Once he has that written consent, though, it gives him cart blanche to your body for the rest of your entire life. Enjoy.

Christian tells her that since she’ll never want to talk to him again once she finds out his deep, dark, darkity-dark dark secret, he won’t tell her over breakfast. She agrees to have dinner with him that night.

“Like Eve, you’re so quick to eat from the tree of knowledge,” I taunt her.

“And so the lion fell in love with the lamb.”

Christian arranges to have his helicopter flown to Portland, and to take Ana home immediately as soon as she finds out he’s interested in the mildest forms of bondage and impact play possible.

“Do people always do what you tell them?” she asks, and the disapproval in her voice is obvious. Is she scolding me now? Her challenge is annoying.

“Usually, if they want to keep their jobs.” Don’t question how I treat my staff.

Yeah, don’t question him, Ana. Because if you do, you might realize he’s a huge fucking dick.

Christian tells Ana to finish her breakfast, and when she doesn’t immediately start jamming food in her mouth:

“Eat!” My voice is more forceful. “Anastasia, I have an issue with wasted food. Eat.”

But…you’re the one who ordered everything off the fucking menu.

“Eat what’s on your plate. If you’d eaten properly yesterday, you wouldn’t be here, and I wouldn’t be declaring my hand so soon.”

Then, after telling her he’ll take her home when her hair is dry:

You’ll need all your strength for tonight, for what I have to show you.

I love that Christian Grey thinks he’s so fucking kinky. It kills me. “You’ll need all your strength to find out that I want to braid your hair and put a blindfold on you and gently trail a riding crop over your skin before fucking you. I’ll have paramedics on standby to treat you for shock.”

Ana asks where Chedward slept the night before, and he tells her that he slept in the bed, and of course she flushes, although here it’s described as “telltale pink cheeks appear,” because someone in the get-this-book-from-author-to-Amazon process probably saw the criticism of the first series and went, “You know… it does seem like that word came up a lot.”

He tells her that he’s never slept with anyone. Ana dries her hair while Christian calls Andrea to get a non-disclosure agreement. More stuff happens, like Christian name-dropping Darfur and liking how Ana’s hair looks, then they leave and get into the elevator.

In the close confines of the elevator, I’m completely aware of her. A trace of her sweet fragrance invades my senses…Her breathing alters, hitching a little, and she peeks up at me with a bright come-hither look.

Shit.

She bites her lip.

She’s doing this on purpose.

I hate this part of Christian’s on-going narrative. He thinks Ana is naive and totally sexless, while also believing that everything she does is a tease to turn him on. Can’t have it both ways, buddy.

I’m hard.

Thanks for the update.

Instantly.

I want her.

Here.

Now.

In the elevator.

That’s like when people

keep hitting enter

because

they think

it makes their

statement

a

very

deep

poem.

“Oh, fuck the paperwork.” The words come from nowhere and on instinct I grab her and push her against the wall.

“Oh, fuck consent.” There, fixed it.

Clasping both her hands, I pin them above her head so she can’t touch me, and once she’s secure, I twist my other hand in her hair while my lips seek and find hers.

Picture of a Seek and Find puzzle for children

She moans into my mouth, the call of a siren, and finally I can sample her: mint and tea and an orchard of mellow fruitfulness.

She tastes like words directly cribbed from a well-known poem by Keats? “Season of mist and mellow fruitfulness!” Yeah, nobody was going to notice that.

She tastes every bit as good as she looks. Reminding me of a time of plenty.

Of autumn, maybe?

Of course the elevator doors open and their poetic and unattributed face-sucking is interrupted. People get on the elevator with them and give them “knowing looks”, and Chedward is all like, what has she done to me, because he’s obviously helpless to control himself and it’s not his fault. Then Ana smiles at him, and it’s the first indication in the entire chapter that she likes him at all. After the guys get out of the elevator, we have to experience this again:

“You’ve brushed your teeth,” I observe with wry amusement.

“I used your toothbrush,” she says, eyes shining.

OH GOD WHY. All I can think about is that episode of How I Met Your Mother where Marshall, Lily, and Ted learn they’ve all been using the same toothbrush by accident. This grosses me out beyond anything I can even possibly conceive of.

Story time: the batteries on my electric toothbrush went out recently, so Mr. Jen said he changed the head of mine to his so I could use it. At least, that’s what I thought he said. What he actually said was, “Remind me to change the head of your toothbrush to mine.” He hadn’t done it yet. So I ended up brushing my teeth with his toothbrush. I didn’t even run hot water over it or anything.

I used SO MUCH mouthwash.

And no, it’s not the same thing as kissing him, because when I kiss him I don’t suck the plaque and food debris off his fucking teeth. I don’t know what kind of kissing people are doing that they can compare the two, but I’m glad I’m not kissing those people.

 

I take her hand and the elevator doors open on the ground floor, and I mutter under my breath, “What is it about elevators?” She gives me a knowing look as we stroll across the polished marble of the lobby.

Not only should there be a paragraph break after “elevators,” it’s also the second “knowing look” on this page.

In the next recap, we’ll cover whatever is in chapter six of Fifty Shades of Grey. Which I’m sure will be fascinating.

150 Comments

  1. Promise
    Promise

    I totally get the thing about toothbrushes. Sharing a toothbrush just isn’t sanitary. I don’t understand how some people can be so cavalier about them. Disgusting.

    September 15, 2015
    |Reply
    • Sunniegreen
      Sunniegreen

      Sorry guys. My partner and I have been using the same toothbrush for years. I wonder what a dentist would think? We also share cups and flatware. Not flossers though. Well, actually…. sometimes.
      I guess we are pretty disgusting?

      September 15, 2015
      |Reply
      • Promise
        Promise

        I know you trade germs with your spouse when you kiss, but sharing a toothbrush and floss really isn’t a good idea. I’m sure your dentist would be appalled. I hope you at least don’t share stuff when one of you is sick.

        September 17, 2015
        |Reply
  2. this is just to say

    I have forced myself on
    the stupid girl
    who was in
    the elevator

    and who
    was probably
    saving herself
    for marriage

    forgive me
    she was delicious
    so minty
    and so plentiful

    September 15, 2015
    |Reply
    • Belle de Jour
      Belle de Jour

      In my Will-Ferrell-as-James-Lipton voice: You, madame/sir, are a DELIGHT.

      September 15, 2015
      |Reply
    • I have control but
      this is all of Ana’s fault
      fuck the paperwork

      September 15, 2015
      |Reply
    • Ali
      Ali

      this is
      so

      b
      e
      a
      u
      t
      i
      f
      u
      l

      that words
      like Christian’s former subs

      e
      s
      c
      a
      p
      e

      me

      September 15, 2015
      |Reply
    • ViolettaD
      ViolettaD

      Jaycie: Write the rest of it, because THAT I’ll read.

      September 15, 2015
      |Reply
    • Belle de Jour
      Belle de Jour

      may i feel said he
      i’ll— began she
      it doesn’t matter said he
      you know how to flatter said she

      may i touch said he
      um, i’m already in your clutch said she
      i need your consent said he
      more paperwork than my rent said she

      may i start to move said he
      really move said she
      my playroom kink will scare said he
      like when you braid my hair said she

      cccome on Ana said he
      ummmm on command said she
      give it up said he
      (my free will?) yup said she

      i’m biting my lip said she
      clearly means unzip said he
      holy cow jeez said she
      MY COCK AGREES said he

      September 16, 2015
      |Reply
      • ella
        ella

        I read that in Tom Hiddleston’s voice.

        September 16, 2015
        |Reply
      • kayenjee
        kayenjee

        Yes. So much, yes.

        September 16, 2015
        |Reply
    • Ilex
      Ilex

      Jaycie, you just made my whole day with this.

      September 16, 2015
      |Reply
    • Tracy
      Tracy

      Bravo!

      September 16, 2015
      |Reply
    • =8)-DX
      =8)-DX

      I’m no romantic
      but my heart
      is
      beating
      for
      Ana

      Oh fuck it
      Just grab her
      Laters, elevator

      September 17, 2015
      |Reply
      • ViolettaD
        ViolettaD

        He wolde have forced me withinne the lifte
        But i wolde noon and yaf to hym short shrifte
        Ne paperwork ne yea or nay to have?
        I kneed hym in the coillons. Saucy knave!

        September 21, 2015
        |Reply
    • Anna
      Anna

      No wonder Ana loves Kate’s plum coloured dress!

      September 17, 2015
      |Reply
  3. Jon
    Jon

    A control freak who can’t control himself. Hmm… isn’t that ironic.

    September 15, 2015
    |Reply
  4. Carolina West
    Carolina West

    And I freaked because one of my chapters is 31 pages, but 50? Does EL even know beans about writing?

    September 15, 2015
    |Reply
  5. SamBeringer
    SamBeringer

    “In. Out. In. Out. In. Out.”

    Reminds me of a blonde joke; a blonde is listening to something on her headphones and someone wants to talk to her. She says she can’t, because if she stops listening she’ll die. The headphones get taken off, she dies, and it turns out she was listening to a recording saying “breathe in. Breathe out. Breathe in. Breathe out…”

    Considering how both Twilight and 50 shades have the supposedly smart heroines forget to breathe/keep gasping, I think “blonde” can be replaced with “brunette heroine from bad romance novels.”

    “So, Taylor must have gone to Walmart, because most retail clothing stores don’t open until 10 AM. So luxury. Much billionaire.”

    It would make complete sense; these dunderheads can’t tell quality unless there’s a price tag attached to it.

    “Maybe that’s the photographer’s modus operandi. The thought is disturbing. But I recall her confession last night–that she’d never been drunk before. Thank God she hasn’t made a habit of this.”

    Translation: “thank God she hasn’t been strutting out on the streets dressed like a whore and practically begging for assault.”

    “Whoa! now she’s pissed . Why?’

    Gee, I don’t know. It couldn’t possibly because most sane, rational people don’t like someone following them no matter what method is used.

    “’Just call room service when you want the table cleared, sir,’ Miss Dark Eyes says with a coquettish look, as if she’s offering more.”

    Can someone write something from the point of view of Elise (yeah, it may not be her name, but it’s less dehumanizing) as she complains about this ass-wipe who keeps looking at her funny?

    “She’ll get sick.”

    Fun fact; the whole “you’ll get sick if you go out in the cold with wet hair” thing is a myth. The worst that’ll happen is your hair will freeze. *Had this happen before*

    “’Like Eve, you’re so quick to eat from the tree of knowledge,’ I taunt her.”

    Taunt. He said “taunt.”

    ASSHOLE.

    Also. His dialogue. Just turned. Shatner. It’s so. Sexy. I can barely. Control. Myself.

    September 15, 2015
    |Reply
    • rateltje
      rateltje

      Sometimes I hate my job. Ever since I took his breakfast order earlier, I have been dreading the moment that I would have to go upstairs and face him again. Thankfully, Lily is coming with me so I don’t have to face him alone. Neither of us feel safe going into his room alone.

      I’m sure Christian Grey can charm the pants off people when he tries, but since I’m “just” a hotel employee, I am apparently not even worthy of any civilty.

      “Did you hear that he brought a passed-out woman to his room last night?” Lily asks in a conspiratory whisper when the elevator doors have closed. My eyes widen, and I shake my head.

      “I overheard Tim telling the new manager that he came in really late last night with some poor unconscious girl. His shift ended just after I came in, but he said wanted to make sure that someone checks if she’s okay before she leaves.”

      “That’s so creepy! I hope she’s okay…” I shudder at the thought of what he may have done to her.

      After the customary polite knock and “Room service!”, Lily and I bring the food into the room. We quickly make the table and lay out all the food. I hear the shower running in the bathroom, and feel relieved that the woman he brought to his room is no longer unconscious as least.

      “Just call room service when you want the table cleared, sir,” I say, briefly meeting his eyes and forcing myself to smile at him politely. His eyes are so cold I’m sure they could stop global warming.

      We leave the hotel room as quickly as we can without looking like we’re fleeing. I can only hope that he will have left by the time we have to clear the table.

      September 15, 2015
      |Reply
      • rateltje
        rateltje

        *neither of us feelS

        Grmpf. I suck at grammar sometimes.

        September 15, 2015
        |Reply
      • Take my money. I want a short story collection of all the women Christian and Ana wrongly maligned!

        September 15, 2015
        |Reply
        • Jo
          Jo

          I second this. I want an entire novel told from the point of view of his several blonde secretaries and the support meetings all his ex-subs have on Fridays.

          September 15, 2015
          |Reply
      • ViolettaD
        ViolettaD

        Yeah. That’s probably closer to it.

        September 15, 2015
        |Reply
      • GS
        GS

        “I hear the shower running in the bathroom, and feel relieved that the woman he brought to his room is no longer unconscious as least.”

        Oh my god. That line creeped me out like nothing else… reminded me of that Criminal Minds episode where a serial killer kidnaps a woman, shoves her into the bath tub, turns on the shower, and while she’s lying there unconsciously, accepts room service, telling the hotel employees that his wife is having a headache, and calls “Are you okay, honey?” into the bathroom.

        I fear Elise’s assumption that the unconscious woman was still alive is a bit presumptious…

        September 16, 2015
        |Reply
      • SamBeringer
        SamBeringer

        Yes!

        This!

        September 16, 2015
        |Reply
      • Promise
        Promise

        Officially Ten billion times better than anything E.L. has ever written.

        September 17, 2015
        |Reply
      • redshoeson
        redshoeson

        THIS IS FANTASTIC.

        September 18, 2015
        |Reply
      • Spockchick
        Spockchick

        This is brilliant. The comments on this thread are wonderful.

        September 20, 2015
        |Reply
    • ViolettaD
      ViolettaD

      “breathe in. Breathe out. Breathe in. Breathe out…”

      Bush’s “Machine Head”?

      September 16, 2015
      |Reply
  6. Kitty
    Kitty

    “Because Christian Grey is a rapist. We know this, because we see him do it to Ana in the third book with the orgasm denial scene.”

    Actually we see him do it as early as chapter 12 in the first book. Ana send him a “nice knowing you” email as a “joke.”

    He pops up in her bedroom while she is completely unaware of his presence in her house (and as we find out later, without invitation from Kate, which makes him being in her room at all breaking and entering). When she sees him in her personal space, she looks around for an escape and seeing none, lunges at him. (According to Ana’s narrative she was going to kiss him, which is still pretty dodgy because she’s only attempting to diffuse the potential threat he presents by distracting him, and not because she’s genuinely turned on.) The problem is, he can’t know what her motivation is because he doesn’t have access to her thoughts. He sees her looking scared and then suddenly lunge for him. He catches her hands and pins her to the bed. He ties her down and starts to take off her shoes. She kicks him and says ‘no’. The narrative assures us that she’s only saying no because she’s self-conscious about having been out running and the smell of her feet. The problem is, he is no position to know why she said no. He doesn’t stop and check in with her, he doesn’t care. His reaction is to threaten her and then proceed with his own plans regardless. By a) disregarding her verbal no and her non-verbal no in the form of her trying to kick off his hands (bearing in mind that they aren’t in a BDSM relationship or a scene where they have alternate methods of expressing that events are consensual) and b) both threatening and shaming her into compliance with the threat of being found like this by her friend makes this entire encounter rape. We know it is because even if she had been saying no because she genuinely wanted him to stop because she was afraid or unhappy with proceedings it still wouldn’t have mattered, he still would have disregarded her no and then threatened her into silence.

    As the sex scene progresses he sets her up for failure so that he has the right to punish her over spilling the wine, even though she never signed the contract and he has no right to punish her since she hasn’t agreed to the contract or the sex that is happening in this scene. He torments her with orgasm denial, even though she hasn’t agreed to that as a form of play that she’s willing to indulge in (how could she when her only exposure to BDSM is from reading the one Wiki page on submission and she isn’t in a position to understand all the variances of all the kinks available?) He finally pulls her into doggy position and slaps her ass before penetrating her with no warning. Frankly, when even the narrative described the maneuver a “sudden assault” then you’re doing it wrong. She’s not getting the slap on her ass as an indulgence to a kink that they’ve pre-agreed on, he’s actually punishing her because it turns him on. Also, rough sex with a woman who’s only sexual experience came like what? The night before? After she already said no in a previous paragraph? Even if she was interested in being forcibly penetrated by this douchebag, she still wasn’t in a position to knowingly give consent because he keeps pushing her faster than she can keep track of the situation. He manages to keep her completely off balance so that she can’t even process what just happened to her, and in a brilliant stroke of manipulation even manages to bring up Mrs. Robinson since he knows that Ana will be upset by the comparison and feel obligated to compare their “relationship” with his and his molestor rather than focus on the events as they just happened. He bounces after he gets what he wants while she’s way confused and trying to rationalize what just happened.

    He leaves and she bursts into tears. As an audience member we can read this one of two ways, she’s an sub who is going into subdrop because she has a shitty dom who didn’t give her after care, which we should probably not go with because she still hasn’t agreed to be in a BDSM relationship with him yet , hypothetical instasub status notwithstanding. Or, on some dim level in her tiny little brain, she realizes she was just sexually assaulted and doesn’t have the words or the ability to fully process the implications just yet. Also, we find out that Kate thought Ana invited him over, implying that she wasn’t the one that let him, and we already know Ana didn’t let him, so we should totally add breaking and entering to his growing list of criminal activities such as stalking and kidnapping.

    Point being, consent issues come up way before the ograsm denial or his open threats to rape the mother of his unborn child that happen in the third book. But on a lighter note…

    Did anyone else hear the sentence fragments segments being read in a William Shatner voice in their head?

    September 15, 2015
    |Reply
    • THANK YOU! I have thought that scene was rape from the very first time I read it, but I almost never see anyone give it more than a passing thought of being a little unpleasant. I tried reading this book when it was first popular out of curiosity, thinking it couldn’t POSSIBLY be as bad as everyone was saying it was. I got to this scene and I got so angry that I ranted at everyone who would listen for hours and couldn’t read any further. He went there thinking she was breaking it off and specifically tells her he’s there to ‘fuck some sense into her’. He went there to rape her into submission! HE FLAT OUT SAYS IT! I don’t understand why this scene gets so consistently overlooked.

      September 16, 2015
      |Reply
      • I absolutely agree with both of you! It’s a terrifying scene!

        September 16, 2015
        |Reply
      • To add to that, even this book gives us reinforcement of that analysis early on. I have never been more horrified in my life than on the FIRST CHAPTER of this book, less than ten minutes after meeting Ana, Christian thinks about tying her up, beating her, and fucking her as punishment for asking a question.

        Did EL think that was hot? Because it sounded to me like a rapists’ thought process, not someone momentarily indulging in a little BDSM mental fantasy.

        September 16, 2015
        |Reply
    • SamBeringer
      SamBeringer

      Oh, yes!

      That, or Stephen Hawking’s voice box. No, that’s too cruel; Stephen Hawking’s voice box does a better job emoting.

      September 16, 2015
      |Reply
  7. Belle de Jour
    Belle de Jour

    “So here’s a question. Would Elena not be pleased that he didn’t jack off? Or would she not be pleased that he didn’t jack off because he was afraid to get caught? And what’s this about disclosure?”

    No clue about the disclosure bit of “discovery and disclosure”, though I suspect EL added “disclosure” because she just really likes alliteration.

    Otherwise, I think Elena wouldn’t be pleased that he masturbated, which was probably one of her rules for him. He seems to be in a bit of flashback mode in this passage.

    (Side note: Please tell me that by the end of this series Ana learns how/begins to masturbate)

    September 15, 2015
    |Reply
    • Mandi Rei Serra
      Mandi Rei Serra

      In one of my spitefics, Elena caught Christian beating off in her bushes while she sunbathed outside. Maybe EL was cruising fanfic for inspiration.
      Again.

      September 15, 2015
      |Reply
  8. I’m going to need to check AO3 and see if anyone has written a crossover fic where Hannibal shows up in Seattle and eats Christian. Because if not, I might have to just write it myself.

    September 15, 2015
    |Reply
    • Kitty
      Kitty

      I think Hannibal has better taste than to want to eat Christian. Come on, the man has standards.

      September 15, 2015
      |Reply
      • He would for sure dispose of him in an artful fashion.

        September 15, 2015
        |Reply
        • ViolettaD
          ViolettaD

          I wouldn’t waste fava beans or a nice Chianti on Chedward.

          September 15, 2015
          |Reply
      • He eats rude people. Who is more rude than this dick?

        September 18, 2015
        |Reply
  9. Mandi Rei Serra
    Mandi Rei Serra

    Who is Kate, E.L.? How did she hurt you?

    I laughed so loud.

    September 15, 2015
    |Reply
    • JC
      JC

      High school friend that married the guy EL had a crush on?

      September 15, 2015
      |Reply
      • My money’s on “popular girl who everyone liked because she was friendly, hard working, and ambitious, but EL is convinced she is only popular because she’s pretty.”

        September 15, 2015
        |Reply
  10. mydogsPA
    mydogsPA

    When I was growing up my parents had bought the soundtrack album from the off-Broadway show of “The Fantasticks” (which turned out to be the longest-running production of 42 years and 17,162 performances) The two neighbors have fenced their yard so their offspring will fall in love, and to get them started the parents arrange for an ‘abduction’ to grab the girl so the boy can ‘save’ her. El Gallo, the hired professional, dislikes the term ‘abduction’ and much prefers the term ‘rape’ because “It’s short and business-like!” (Yes, I remember that from the album when I played it 50 years ago) El Gallo then breaks into song extolling the virtues of rape (a ‘pretty word’) and “So you see the sort of rape depends on what you pay” as he differentiates between the ‘ obvious open schoolboy’ rape and the ‘very charming sight’ of the rape with Indians or on horseback.

    http://www.sweetslyrics.com/600327.The%20Fantasticks%20movie%20-%20RAPE%20SONG.html

    Lovely.

    And I’m a guy.

    I guess if you want to sell books or play tickets, then espouse how wonderful rape is. . . .

    But my Mom loved it in spite of how awfully wrong it was. And still is. And always will be.

    September 15, 2015
    |Reply
    • Lisa
      Lisa

      It’s an archaic definition/use of the word rape which at the time just meant to abduct. The song is never meant to imply forced sex. The authors eventually rewrote the song once the word lost its former meaning and came to be only associated with forced sex.

      September 17, 2015
      |Reply
      • M
        M

        My parents liked that soundtrack, too, and they actually explained the word origin to me when I was young so I wouldn’t be creeped out by the song. I was unaware they rewrote it — I think I only ever heard the original cast recording, and when I saw it live (20-some years ago) it was still the word rape.

        September 18, 2015
        |Reply
      • Mistletoe
        Mistletoe

        Really? Because a production done in my high school in the 90s still used the song with the word. If it hadn’t been such a horribly low attendance, someone might have said something. But I digress.

        October 21, 2015
        |Reply
  11. Quelaag
    Quelaag

    On Christian not using the word “rape”:

    When researchers examine rapists’ inclinations, they don’t use the word “rape” in surveys and interviews. Instead, they describe an action that would be considered rape. They’ve found that, even if the questions are otherwise the same, the questions without the word “rape” are far more likely to gain a positive response.

    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/dispatches/2015/01/12/one-third-of-college-men-would-rape-if-no-repercussions/

    I highly doubt that ELJ used this as a subtle indication that Christian is a rapist. I think it’s more likely that ELJ doesn’t understand what rape is either.

    September 15, 2015
    |Reply
    • SamBeringer
      SamBeringer

      Given how ELJ has defined rape pretty much as “masked man who assaults you in a dark alleyway,” I’m not surprised.

      September 16, 2015
      |Reply
  12. Jo
    Jo

    I am utterly astonished by how much of an asshole Christian sounds when we’re IN HIS HEAD. Everything that happened in this chapter was creepy as all fuck. I just, I can’t even. But you’re absolutely right: if this book had been published first, I think this is the point where most people would have thrown it out of the window in a DNF rage.

    September 15, 2015
    |Reply
    • ViolettaD
      ViolettaD

      Either that, or decided he was modeled after Patrick Bateman. Which he kind of is.

      September 15, 2015
      |Reply
      • CIB
        CIB

        !!!

        I never thought about it until I just read that, but it makes SO MUCH SENSE now.

        September 21, 2015
        |Reply
  13. Anon123
    Anon123

    “In the next recap, we’ll cover whatever is in chapter six of Fifty Shades of Grey. Which I’m sure will be fascinating.”

    Wait, so you did get through the whole chapter in one go? Confused… :-/

    September 15, 2015
    |Reply
    • Maggie
      Maggie

      No, she stopped at the point in “Grey” that corresponded to a chapter break in “Fifty Shades of Grey.”

      September 15, 2015
      |Reply
    • Carolina West
      Carolina West

      That was my thought, too. Maybe this chapter messed with her head so much she lost track. That’s what it would do to me.

      September 15, 2015
      |Reply
  14. Devri Goodspeed
    Devri Goodspeed

    Why doesn’t Christian have an inner Goddess?
    Seriously though its kind of weird that there were all those voices rolling around in Anna’s head and Christian only has his duck chiming in every now and again.

    September 15, 2015
    |Reply
    • Devri Goodspeed
      Devri Goodspeed

      *dick obviously but i just had tears imagining his heart to hearts with his good friend the duck

      September 15, 2015
      |Reply
      • H2
        H2

        This would be a MUCH better story, I’m sure!

        September 16, 2015
        |Reply
      • TonySteel
        TonySteel

        Instead he has an inner jerkass. And it does agree.

        September 16, 2015
        |Reply
      • Ashley S
        Ashley S

        Coincidently, in real life male ducks are very rapey. Female ducks have even evolved to have a second, artificial, vagina. This is for the semen of ducks that rape them, so that they do not have to carry the unwanted offspring. Also, if you keep male ducks with chickens, they will rape them also. Male ducks like chickens because they are more submissive than female ducks. The result of this cross species intercourse is often death or damage to the chicken because of incomparable genitalia. So… I think a duck sounds like Christian’s perfect spirit animal.

        September 17, 2015
        |Reply
        • Ashley S
          Ashley S

          Oops. Incompatable. Stupid auto correct.

          September 17, 2015
          |Reply
        • Devri Goodspeed
          Devri Goodspeed

          Mind blown my literal subconscious seems to know its shit

          September 18, 2015
          |Reply
    • Laina
      Laina

      Oh god I can’t even. I’m picturing him like Ernie with his rubber ducky now XD

      September 16, 2015
      |Reply
      • Devri Goodspeed
        Devri Goodspeed

        the heart warming tale of a sociopath and his inanimate pal

        September 16, 2015
        |Reply
  15. Tenko
    Tenko

    I agree with you about the toothbrush. It’s disgusting! Now that I think about it, these books are more bland and gross than sexy. Ewww!

    September 15, 2015
    |Reply
  16. Tammy
    Tammy

    Fifty Shades of Why The Fuck Is This Chapter Fifty Pages, EL? And lmao I loved your description of how it would feel to read and recap this chapter all in one go.

    Anyway, this chapter should have started when he first brings Ana to the hotel and end when they leave the next morning. If I wanted to make Christian not so fucking creepy I would have had him realize the moment he plops Ana on the bed and take a breath that he fuuuucked up big time when he let his savior complex get the best of him. He rationalizes that since she’s already here, she may as well sleep here. He tries to wake her up so she can get clean but fails, and cleans up vomit with a nearby box of tissues and tucks her in, apologizing profusely, before taking a pillow and sleeping on the floor, not fucking oogling her when she is passed out drunk. The following morning, he orders the OJ and aspirin, and when Ana wakes up he apologizes, again, for thinking more about himself than her, and offers to buy her anything she wants for breakfast, new clothes, and a limo ride back to her apartment while mentally criticizing himself and thinking that Ana must think of him as a world class creep and that he blew his chance because his ego got in the way.

    September 15, 2015
    |Reply
    • Jo
      Jo

      Okay, yeah, but that’s what a decent writer who wanted her hero to seem at least a little bit sympathetic would do.

      September 15, 2015
      |Reply
  17. Aloysius Snuffleupagus
    Aloysius Snuffleupagus

    Thank you for taking ‘Grey’ bullets for the rest of us.
    Christian is a billionaire and had the forethought to purchase :
    Jeans: Blue Denim Size 4
    Blouse: Blue. Pretty. Size 4
    Converse: Black Size 7
    Socks: Size 7
    Lingerie: Underwear–Size Small. Bra–Estimate 34
    Why, oh why, did he not add a toothbrush to the list? Would it have taken him over budget?
    Wouldn’t the bathroom amenities in such a posh hotel include a toothbrush? Could he not call the concierge and have one delivered?
    He saw her vomit. Why didn’t he assume that she would want to brush her teeth as well as change her clothes?
    Oh, and the rapey-ness is awful, too.

    September 15, 2015
    |Reply
    • Sten
      Sten

      Oh god, I forgot about the vomit. Now I’m even more grossed out by the toothbrush thing…

      September 29, 2015
      |Reply
  18. Artemis
    Artemis

    E. L. James was somehow made aware that ginger figging exists, but I still don’t think she understands how it works? Like…it doesn’t prevent the receiving partner from clenching their buttocks, it just BURNS like FIRE because a piece of raw ginger is getting raw ginger juice all over their mucus membranes, and the anal opening has a TON of nerve endings. Sorry if I’m yucking anyone’s yum, I just really do not enjoy figging.

    Also, Christian Grey’s use of the phrase “in the lifestyle” definitely further convinces me of my headcanon that the reason the (extremely active) public BDSM scene in Seattle is never mentioned in these books is because Christian has been banned from every event for being a huge creeper with bad boundaries and no concept of how consent works.

    September 15, 2015
    |Reply
    • Artemis
      Artemis

      Jesus that second paragraph is just all one huge run-on sentence. I’m sorry.

      September 15, 2015
      |Reply
    • Sheila
      Sheila

      More worried that now every time someone uses figging in fiction, people are going to think “they got that from Fifty Shades”. Um, no? I’ve known about it for years?

      I don’t think Christian is part of his local scene at all. Because he doesn’t have any friends. He seems to do everything alone, and the only people his own age he ever hangs out with are his siblings and his wife’s friends. Which is why his line in the other book about how his sub’s behavior reflects on him as a dom makes no sense- if no one else knows they’re in a bdsm relationship, especially because 1) he’s actively trying to keep that a secret and 2) he’s not part of a local scene, then who does he expect to CARE?

      September 16, 2015
      |Reply
      • ViolettaD
        ViolettaD

        That’s because he’s a creep, not a Dom.
        I knew a group of people who were into BDSM when I lived in NY, and they were very social. Had Obedience contests where they basically put their Subs through their paces like show horses. I almost went to the Vault one drunken St. Patrick’s day, never made it (which is a story in itself), but when I told a friend I was going, he asked me to say hi to the staff from him and his wife.

        September 16, 2015
        |Reply
      • JennyTrout
        JennyTrout

        UGH, I know. There’s figging in the first chapter of The Baby, and then I got to this chapter of Grey and I’m like, “Great. Now I’m going to get more of those people running around going, “SHE PLAGIARIZES FROM E.L. JAMES BECAUSE SPANKINGS!” but this time about figging.

        September 17, 2015
        |Reply
        • Sheila
          Sheila

          What bothers me the most about this series is that there’s actually nothing new about it at all. Except maybe the tampon scene- that didn’t appear in Secretary OR 9 1/2 weeks.

          also, he barely knows her and he’s already jumped ahead to figging

          September 17, 2015
          |Reply
    • Dee
      Dee

      I didn’t realize it was an established sexual practice. It doesn’t sound pleasant to me either. I once got chili juice there, and no, it was not intentional – I chopped a bunch of chilies, and even though I washed my hands three times with hot water and soap, I still had traces of the juice on my hands. Got it in my eyes, my nose, and worst of all, I went to the bathroom and accidentally brushed my hand against my vagina. Tried to wipe it away, and spread it to my ass as well. It burned like a MOTHERFUCKER. I’m sure ginger wouldn’t burn as badly, but it still sounds like it would hurt. Btw, I have a bondage fetish, but no interest in S&M beyond a few smacks on the ass with a belt. Too bad that 50 Shades presents both bondage and S&M as a packaged whole, with no other options.

      September 16, 2015
      |Reply
      • Dee
        Dee

        I’m not trying to shame people’s sexual fetishes. Even if it doesn’t appeal to me personally, I wouldn’t have a problem if the book presented figging in a consensual context. I was excited to hear about 50 Shades when it first came out because I thought it would portray a woman who genuinely enjoys kinky sex, but that turned out to not be the case at all. The books are gross to me because they confuse consensual kink and abuse.

        September 16, 2015
        |Reply
    • If his atrocious behavior as a dom and generally terrible attitude hasn’t gotten him banned from every establishment in the PNW, then I would assume he thinks himself ‘above’ the plebeian BDSM scene in the area.

      With all of his buckets of money from Grey’s Corporate Enterprises of Business Doings, LLC., I’m surprised he doesn’t have some sort of Eyes Wide Shut-like hellfire club. I mean, it’s right there for ELJ to crib from to show just how singular and kinky his tastes are.

      September 16, 2015
      |Reply
      • He likes to spank women, tie them up, use vibrators and have anal sex.

        I’m trying to figure out what, exactly, is so “singular” about any of that. And they never even do the freaking anal in these books!

        September 16, 2015
        |Reply
        • But he’s so FUCKED UP and he doesn’t do romance, he’s not like other men!!1 He’s also a 100+ year old sparkly vampire. Someone’s suffering from a severe case of special snowflakeitis.

          September 16, 2015
          |Reply
        • Belle de Jour
          Belle de Jour

          I was wondering about the anal – they make such a BIG DEAL about it.

          September 16, 2015
          |Reply
      • Tracy
        Tracy

        If he had his own secret club, this would have been a WAY better story. But that just makes too much sense for this author.

        September 16, 2015
        |Reply
  19. Jessica
    Jessica

    Thank you for this recap Jenny, I thoroughly enjoyed it. I read the original series and then found your recaps after. With this book though, I have no interest in reading the actual book, even for the joy of a good train wreck. You’re recaps are perfect!

    September 15, 2015
    |Reply
  20. ViolettaD
    ViolettaD

    ‘And maybe the reason she didn’t say “fuck” or “sex” when she asked “We didn’t–” was because you interrupted her, as implied by the fact that her dialogue ended on an em dash right before yours began.’
    Which is why punctuation matters. James could have had a series of dots to indicate Ana’s voice trailing off.
    guess she never read any Barbara Cartland, because Cartland’s wide-eyed heroines always speak in elisions.

    September 15, 2015
    |Reply
  21. Laina
    Laina

    “Then, after telling her he’ll take her home when her hair is dry:”

    What, we’re just gonna sit around for 3 hours waiting for Ana’s hair to dry?

    (I have really thick hair. It’s not even shoulder length and it takes forever to dry, lol.)

    September 16, 2015
    |Reply
    • Devri Goodspeed
      Devri Goodspeed

      seriously I showered twelve hrs ago and my hair is still a little damp

      September 16, 2015
      |Reply
      • H2
        H2

        Preach!

        September 16, 2015
        |Reply
  22. Afflixi
    Afflixi

    Oh my word, THE TOOTHBRUSH SCENE! I had forgotten about that! Fun story: back in high school two of my friends and I would have frequent sleep-overs as we lived very far away from each other. One of them, for some reason, would just not bring her toothbrush and expect to use one of ours. My other friend would let her since the gross girl would always pepper the request with “you know you’re best friends when…” and “I would never share toothbrushes with anyone else but the two of you”, but I always clutched mine to my chest and ran away. After what must have been about the 100th disgusted “NO!” she chirped up with, “I don’t know what the big deal is, at least now I ask you instead of just using it without telling you!” And I could never trust again.

    September 16, 2015
    |Reply
    • That’s an unbelievably shitty move. It’s flatout ignoring your bodily autonomy. Wow.

      September 18, 2015
      |Reply
  23. GS
    GS

    “Grey thinks he’s not a romantic hero, but I honestly believe that the only person on earth who would think, “The sight stirs my body once more,” would be Mr. Darcy, when he was really trying to think dirty about something.”

    If you think this is the naughtiest Mr Darcy can get up to, you haven’t read enough Pride and Prejudice fanfiction. Also, that line at the end of the book, where it says “and he expressed himself on the occasion as sensibly and as warmly as a man violently in love can be supposed to do”… a lot of people suspect that’s regency code for “He went and snogged her face off” 😉

    September 16, 2015
    |Reply
  24. Ri
    Ri

    I have never slept with a woman. I’ve fucked many, but to wake up beside an alluring young woman is a new and stimulating experience. My cock agrees.

    I… I can’t stop laughing. Imagine if he does this all the time? “Gentlemen, I think this meeting of the board of Grey Enterprises Auditions Testings Incorporated Businesses Limited has been a comprehensive waste of time. And my cock thinks so too.”

    Coyly personifying your sexual organs completely spoils the whole suave, dangerous act. Either you’re a heartless, devil-may-care outcast brooding over your next romantic conquest, or you’re putting a little origami hat on your penis and making it sing along with Potter Puppet Pals. You can’t do both simultaneously, it’s just not possible.

    Oh God, wait. I’ve figured it out. Is it his inner cock? Like his version of Ana’s inner goddess, with all the fancy imaginary props? Try to think of a disembodied cartoon penis doing a victorious samba on ice skates or whatever and keep a straight face, I dare you.

    September 16, 2015
    |Reply
    • ViolettaD
      ViolettaD

      Oh dear gawd.

      Remember THIS one?

      September 16, 2015
      |Reply
      • Ri
        Ri

        Haha, yes, perfect!

        September 16, 2015
        |Reply
    • Lacey
      Lacey

      That is the first thing that came to my mind when I read that!!! If his cock is like Ana’s subconscious….well…it won’t all have been worth it, no, not by a long shot. But it would have been entertaining for once!

      September 16, 2015
      |Reply
      • thegreatdragon
        thegreatdragon

        Now we just need to wait for his inner goddess to show up. (Unless his cock’s his inner goddess too? “my cock triple axels in excitement before doing a perfect pirouette”)

        September 17, 2015
        |Reply
  25. Coryn
    Coryn

    Urgh… the ‘In. Out. In. Out.’ sounds suspiciously like he’s having sex with her but in denial about it. All it needed was him moaning a lot and we’d have the true draft.

    September 16, 2015
    |Reply
    • Belle de Jour
      Belle de Jour

      I can see it. Oh gawd. Oh gawd, that’s awful.

      September 16, 2015
      |Reply
  26. “This day in history: The world was supposed to end. Honestly, considering how hugely popular this book became in 2011, the apocalypse wouldn’t have been the worst thing to happen to us.”

    I would say the book’s popularity should have been a portent!

    “… pull on my PJ pants …”

    Went to Harvard, grew up with doctors, runs a multi-billion-dollar company … and says “PJ pants.”

    “I feel like 70% of the words in this book are used because they seemed smart at the time, but the actual definitions weren’t important.”

    You read the original trilogy. I feel like this shouldn’t surprise you. Word-A-Day Calendar! I’m telling you, she has one.

    Yeah .. the toothbrush thing and kissing … Ick! Just ick! I won’t share a toothbrush or even eating utensils or a drink WITH ANYONE EVER. My best friend insists it’s because I’m an only child and never learned to share, but that isn’t it at all. The idea of saliva sharing in those circumstances just totally grosses me out. I’m not a germaphobe otherwise, but that’s just ew. Whether it’s my partner, my kid or one of my parents. Just no. Get your own.

    September 16, 2015
    |Reply
    • ElBandito
      ElBandito

      ‘My best friend insists it’s because I’m an only child and never learned to share, but that isn’t it at all.’

      LOL, your best friend probably doesn’t have gross siblings that tended to abuse juice, doritos and chips ahoy cookies as kids (I still have problems with people who drink while they’re still chewing for that reason!). I also have a problem with using a stranger’s toothbrush, especially if I don’t know how they use their mouth or toothbrush (for all we know, that could be what Mrs. Jones uses to scrub the toilet). If EL did like what Janet Fitch wrote in Paint it Black, Ana could’ve simply rubbed toothpaste on her teeth with a finger as a temporary measure, since she *did* ask Chedward to take her home after breakfast.

      September 16, 2015
      |Reply
    • thegreatdragon
      thegreatdragon

      At least he didn’t same jam-jams?

      September 17, 2015
      |Reply
      • thegreatdragon
        thegreatdragon

        say* not same

        September 17, 2015
        |Reply
  27. Ivory Nethers
    Ivory Nethers

    This chapter has finally given me a fic idea.

    Christian Grey, dangerous, brooding captain of industry, has been waking up every day with a chili pepper lodged in his anus. Despite the tightest security money can buy, Christian has yet to catch the culprit. Worse still, the peppers are climbing the Scoville scale. Will his sharp business mind find an answer, or indeed work out that it happens every time he mistreats his staff? Who is the Mysterious Figger? Taylor, Christian’s rugged head of security? Mrs. Jones, his unassuming housekeeper? The three former subs who’ve been living undetected in his apartment for a year? One thing’s for sure: he’s not going to the police for help.

    September 16, 2015
    |Reply
    • ViolettaD
      ViolettaD

      Notify me when he reaches habaneros. Couldn’t happen to a nicer guy.

      September 16, 2015
      |Reply
      • Elisabeth
        Elisabeth

        Nothing less than a ghost chili for that bastard. 😉

        September 16, 2015
        |Reply
    • thegreatdragon
      thegreatdragon

      This actually sounds fantastic. Now I want to know who did it. Who is the Furtive Figger? The Capsaicin Creep? The Jalapeno Hoodwink?

      September 17, 2015
      |Reply
      • ViolettaD
        ViolettaD

        Should be easy to narrow down. How many people would be willing to put their hands that near an asshole’s asshole?

        September 17, 2015
        |Reply
        • thegreatdragon
          thegreatdragon

          Prob Mrs. Jones. She already cleans his butt plugs, might as well go for his butt.

          September 17, 2015
          |Reply
      • ViolettaD
        ViolettaD

        Prizes to the employee willing to hollow out a Naga Jolokia and stick Chedward’s pee-pee in it.

        September 17, 2015
        |Reply
    • Aloysius Snuffleupagus
      Aloysius Snuffleupagus

      1000% would read!

      September 17, 2015
      |Reply
    • Spockchick
      Spockchick

      Or Rosemary, the telephhone operator? Or could it be Henry, the mild mannered janitor?

      September 20, 2015
      |Reply
    • omg, I can’t stop laughing at this

      I’d totally read it

      September 20, 2015
      |Reply
  28. thegreatdragon
    thegreatdragon

    Idk if it’s Christian’s voice (such as it is) or the fact that this is a near word-for-word iteration of 50SoG, but I find this book infinitely more boring than Ana’s version of events.

    September 17, 2015
    |Reply
  29. Rin
    Rin

    This is a comedy, right?

    September 17, 2015
    |Reply
  30. Alice
    Alice

    I’m kind of secretly hoping that Stephenie Meyer is just biding her time, waiting for E.L. to make as much money of this plagiarized series as possible. At that moment, I hope she lawyers up and sues the fuck out of her. Seriously. It’d make me feel vindicated.

    September 17, 2015
    |Reply
    • Devri Goodspeed
      Devri Goodspeed

      She probably waiting for Fifty shades of the Host. When Anna and Christian contend with the parasitic alien attack.

      September 17, 2015
      |Reply
      • Alice
        Alice

        Their baby? HAHAHAHA…ha. Oh idk, but I wouldn’t be surprised if she ripped off that as well.

        September 18, 2015
        |Reply
  31. Yvonne
    Yvonne

    This day in history: The world was supposed to end.

    I read the entire article. Where are you getting September 15th from?

    September 17, 2015
    |Reply
    • Laina
      Laina

      She’s not. This book is divided into chapters that are not numbered, but dated. This chapter’s date is presumably December whatever it is. Go back to the first recap of this, and Jenny explains this section.

      September 17, 2015
      |Reply
    • thegreatdragon
      thegreatdragon

      It’s Saturday, May 21, 2011. That date in the title is the time period for this chapter (since these chapters aren’t numbered but instead identified by dates that correspond w/ 50 Shades of Grey’s timeline.) “This day in history” always refers to the day in which the chapter of Grey is set, not the day Jenny’s posting her recap.

      September 18, 2015
      |Reply
  32. luftwaffle
    luftwaffle

    ‘She stares down at her fingers.

    “You know, you really should learn to take a compliment.”

    Perhaps she doesn’t get many…but why? She’s gorgeous in an understated way.’

    Or perhaps, Chedward, just PERHAPS, your comment on her blouse, however complimentary it may have been, reminded her that the reason she’s here in your hotel room is because you brought her here, unconscious, because it was more convenient to you (and also because your BFF Mr. Cock told you to, but she only has your words to go by to judge your motives– words that did not indicate that any concern for her well-being factored into your decision*), and also that you sent her own clothes to the laundry, which you did after stripping her to her underwear, all while she was passed out! And perhaps, just maybe, there is a small possibility… that these facts might make her somewhat uncomfortable? Nah, it’s probably just that people don’t tell her she’s pretty often enough.

    *And while we’re on the topic, this whole set-up would have been a lot better if he’d had even the fleetingest of thoughts about not wanting her to sleep off the alcohol poisoning without someone to watch over her, but I suppose I can’t expect E.L. James to have any better understanding of alcohol poisoning (or compassion– sorry, was that too harsh?) than she does about BDSM…

    September 17, 2015
    |Reply
    • Quelaag
      Quelaag

      — sorry, was that too harsh? —

      No.

      September 17, 2015
      |Reply
  33. Devri Goodspeed
    Devri Goodspeed

    Ugh EL James should write an apology letter to the word ‘subconscious’. The amount of times i see it used incorrectly now is absurd. I honestly suspect the reason she ever even had it in her books at all is because it has “sub” in the word.

    September 18, 2015
    |Reply
  34. Emma
    Emma

    “And unless Ana invests in a lot of chapstick, it’s pretty much impossible that her constantly bitten bottom lip is anything other than raw and scabby.”

    This cracked me up because I do have the bad habit of biting my lip too much, but I’m also pretty much addicted to chapstick. As in I carry it with me from room to room and feel anxious if I don’t have it with me. But at least my lips are soft and smooth!

    September 18, 2015
    |Reply
  35. Dr. Zoidberg
    Dr. Zoidberg

    What drives me crazy (ok, one little thing among millions) is how completely inconsistent Chedward is from paragraph to paragraph. “Was she raped? Well, serves her right!” “She’s mad that I’m condescending? Let me explain common technology in the most condescending terms possible.” “I’m afraid something terrible could have happened to her! Let me threaten her with a spanking!” Seriously, I get whiplash from the swift changes in his behavior.

    September 18, 2015
    |Reply
    • Quelaag
      Quelaag

      I think ELJ is confusing inconsistent for conflicted and lacking characterization for enigmatic.

      Christian actually made more sense when I didn’t know what he was thinking … Then again, so does Ana.

      September 18, 2015
      |Reply
  36. Lisa D
    Lisa D

    I was assistant director for a production of it a few years back and our script never used rape.

    September 18, 2015
    |Reply
  37. I came across your page when someone posted your blog about the “gofundme” debacle and after reading that highly amusing response saw this one and O M G you kill me! I love your humor! Can we be best friends? 😉

    Thanks for the laugh.

    September 19, 2015
    |Reply
  38. Crystal
    Crystal

    I’m just excited that you mentioned skullcrusher mountain. Because JC. Though, the song is much more romantic than these books.

    September 22, 2015
    |Reply
    • Aurelia
      Aurelia

      Skullcrusher Mountain is the most awesome song! =oD

      October 21, 2016
      |Reply
  39. noisyninja
    noisyninja

    “all long legs and big eyes.”

    I have so much loathing for this rhetoric. I know, of all the things that are terrible about these books, this is the least of them, but I see it more and more with other authors and it HAS TO STOP. Only 13 year old girls talk like this. “He walked in, all rippling muscles and piercing eyes.” This is LAZY WRITING.

    She did laundry, all starched sheets and fluffy towels.

    He washed the dishes, all soapy hands and squeaky wine glasses.

    Awful.

    September 23, 2015
    |Reply
    • ViolettaD
      ViolettaD

      I did NOT write like that when I was 13!
      This is how I wrote when I was 13:
      “So then he pulled up his shirt too so we could feel each other’s skin.”

      September 23, 2015
      |Reply
  40. S. Delaney Plumas
    S. Delaney Plumas

    Grey reminds me of Martin Shkreli, the guy who was all over the news for jacking the price on Daraprim. Right as I saw that photo of him making the hand signals in front of some poster, I immediately thought of these recaps and hoped that someone would make him the unofficial “face” of CG. I couldn’t think of many worse punishments.

    http://static.digg.com/images/748fdf59ed974509b5f391a531aa3b33_1MH9Kd9_header.jpeg
    Behold, the hero! For those who are unfortunate enough to be surrounded by stupid people who “want their own Christian Grey”, you can now rip one straight from the headlines.

    September 24, 2015
    |Reply
  41. californianinkansas
    californianinkansas

    I laughed so hard I snorted Diet Coke up my nose! This re-cap was just brilliant, a truly masterful level of snark. *bows respectfully*

    September 28, 2015
    |Reply
  42. moonray
    moonray

    So, I’m not the only one thinking that Ana is an obvious self insertion. It’s totally a marysue-ish character, and all the hate she has against other women it’s the writer hate against women having sex with hot males she can’t even hope to touch. The more I read about her and her books, the more I find her disgusting. It’s not only what she writes, but who she is that is totally despicable

    October 4, 2015
    |Reply
  43. Christi
    Christi

    PROTIP: read all Christian Gray dialogue aloud with a Homestar accent. It will revolutionize your reading experience, or destroy your memories of Homestarrunner.

    October 4, 2015
    |Reply
  44. Kate
    Kate

    Okay, now I’m reading his internal monologue in Sheldon’s voice. It makes the whole experience so much better. Bless you.

    October 7, 2015
    |Reply
    • ViolettaD
      ViolettaD

      I still think Gilbert Gottfried is the gold standard.

      October 7, 2015
      |Reply

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