Chapter 14 In Brief
People talk to each other.
Chapter 14 - My View
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Chapter 14 is a bit of a weird one. Nothing actually happens, so apologies in advance for the lack of funny. In fact, you can replicate Chapter 14 if you want to. Just pop outside, go to a public place and listen to some of the inane conversations that are going on around you. When you're all done, come home and write them down. Congratulations, you've just written a more exciting, cohesive version of Chapter 14.
It all starts with Ana having a dream. I know that it's a dream because Christian is smacking her on the vagina with a riding crop. Unless I've skipped about 10 chapters, I don't see any way that Ana can go from crying and sleeping at the end of Chapter 13 to being minge-whipped. As suspected, it is a dream and Ana oozes all over the covers, leaving her sheets looking like Slimer from Ghostbusters has just gone down on her.
Wandering into the kitchen, she's wearing Christian's jacket. He gave it to her last night before she left the hotel. I didn't think it was important enough to mention in the last chapter. Shows what I know. I'm hoping the jacket won't become integral to the plot otherwise it will be even more obvious that I don't know what I'm doing.
Kate is in the kitchen and the women discuss Christian's sexual history and hi-five each other because he does not have AIDS. Well...he said that he doesn't have AIDS, but Christian has sometimes been economical with the truth, so there is a chance that he's riddled with it. Although Ana knows that the contract is not legally enforceable, she decides against discussing anything with Kate. This is probably a smart move because as a journalist, Kate will pick up on any dangling thread of a story and turn it into conjecture and lies. Before Ana knows it, the student newspaper will run a complete fabrication of a story about how an asexual virgin has been seduced by a billionaire and starts a BDSM relationship with him. Pfft...as if that would happen...
Rather than discuss Christian, Ana asks Kate to run through the speech that she's going to give at the graduation ceremony. Not wanting to turn down the chance to show off, Kate launches into the speech while Ana sits around thinking about Christian. She realises two things. Firstly, he doesn't want a normal relationship. Secondly, she isn't sure about being a Sub. Despite these HUGE reservations, Ana doesn't want to lose him. Here, we learn another important life lesson. You should just put up with abusive relationships that you are forced into. If a man hits you or won't allow you any space or time to yourself, it's because he loves you. Accepting a relationship on the man's terms is a perfectly normal and understandable thing to do. As we're living in the 1800's, it is a woman's place to do what the man wants. If he wants a relationship, he is bloody well going to get a relationship.
Ana then gets herself ready and waits for Ray, her stepdad...but the person that she calls 'Dad.' Kate calls Ana, just to make sure that she's talking about her. Ana obediently starts discussing Kate's movements with RayDad...despite the fact that he probably couldn't care less about what Kate is up to.
Sitting in the Graduation Hall, Ana tries her hardest to look anonymous because she doesn't want Christian to spot her. As everyone is wearing the same robes and hats, you'd imagine that she'd have a pretty good chance of going undetected, but Christian's laser Terminator eye singles her out. Thinking about it, Christian is JUST like the T1000, relentlessly pursuing his target to a ridiculous degree. Basically, all Ana has to do is lure Christian into a vat of molten steel(e?) and then we can all go home and pretend that none of this ever happened.
Beside her, two girls profess their undying love for Christian. Jealous that someone else should be looking at her man, Ana tells them that he's gay and the girls just accept the murmurings of a random girl that they don't know without thinking to ask Ana what she's on about. Soon after, Kate takes to the stage to give her speech. Ana sits there and fawns over Kate's every word. She is painfully besotted with everything Kate does and says. The reason that Ana hasn't noticed boys until now is that she's spent all of her time thinking about scissoring the shit out of Kate. This book is essentially a series of people who are obsessed with other people. Paul loves Ana...Ana loves Kate...Kate loves cock...I could go on...
Everyone in the audience is won over by Kate and how utterly charming and beautiful she is. Despite giving the speech wearing a bikini, noone thought that it was too self-indulgent or egotistical. Kate is fucking brilliant. If you think otherwise, I will fight you.
Next up is Grey Christian, dressed head to toe in grey. Obviously. He starts going on about ecologically sustainable farming. For some reason, all of the women in the audience jizz themselves at the same time. Who knew that would be a turn on? Fortunately, Ana zones out of his speech so we're not subjected to 20 minutes (and 45 pages) of intolerable self-promotion as Christian tries to convince us that he's not involved in human trafficking. Ana does listen for a bit...up to a point where Christian mentions that he knows what it's like to be hungry. She then does this:
It turns out that Christian has not always led a privileged life and he spent his formative years as Oliver Twist, before being adopted by Grace Sillyname Grey. Ana then plays out an 80's movie montage in her head, which quickly charts Christian's past, from hungry orphan to domineering billionaire...probably with a Bonnie Tyler soundtrack. She then deduces that his weird obsession with food is probably based around the fact that he was once hungry. Ana...with observations like that, you should be a detective. She then makes a massive assumption that Christian's conversations about Darfur are all based around sustainable farming. She'll be so annoyed when she realises that it's actually about ladies with AIDS. As we all know, the contract does not allow for even a hint of AIDS. In her tiny ladies brain, she also marvels at how Christian is able to run a company AND turn up unannounced wherever she is. Clearly she does not realise that these 2 events are connected and that she is very much part of his business.
Following the speech, the graduation ceremony begins in earnest, with scrolls being given out for an intolerable length of time. After waiting for a few days, it's Ana's turn to receive her degree. Despite having to multi-task; wearing robes, walking in public AND shaking hands with Christian, you're probably thinking 'Ana is definitely going to fall over and somehow contrive to land on Christian's erect penis.' If that is what you're thinking...you're wrong. In spite of the high pressure situation, Ana does manage to perform basic human functions and manages to shake hands with Christian. While she's there, and in front of hundreds of people, they have a slightly awkward conversation about e-mails relating to 'mergers and acquisitions.' I have no idea what that's about...but it sounds boring.
Eventually, the ceremony draws to a close. Kate comes to meet Ana, telling her that Christian is waiting for her. In doing so, she manages to elicit a compliment from Ana about her speech. Upon finding Christian, he drags her into a locker room and proceeds to whine about the fact she's not text or e-mailed him. Clearly Christian is unaware of the '2 day rule' and has imposed a '2 minute rule' without telling Ana. Despite the fact that they are not in a relationship and the fact that he doesn't want a relationship, he really is acting like a needy little bitch. I'm sure that it's nice for women to feel wanted and desired...but there's a fine line between being desired and being pestered.
It turns out that Christian e-mailed and text so many times because he was worried that Ana wouldn't make it home safely in her car. If he was so concerned, he had 2 options. Firstly, he could have called her. He obviously has her number and phones are pretty easy to use. Secondly, he could have gone round her house. It's not like he'd be setting a precedent...he's already randomly turned up on many other occasions. There really is no logic to how anyone behaves in this book.
Once again, Christian launches into a tirade against Ana's car, calling it a deathtrap. He can't accept that some people have shit cars. I don't even own a car. If I was going out with Christian, I imagine that my legs would be considered unwieldy and that he'd arrange for me to have my legs hacked off, to be replaced by some blades like Oscar Pistorius. Christian then finds out that José services Ana's car. The ferocity of his anger practically turns him into the Incredible Hulk as Christian Grey can only trust the decision making skills of Christian Grey. The fact that Ana has chosen to let José service her car before she knew Christian is irrelevant. Leaving him to smash up a city block, Ana heads back to find RayDad.
Upon finding RayDad, he slips an arm around Ana. Hopefully Christian is not nearby. If he sees another man with his arm around his possession, he will flip out and uppercut RayDad's head clean off like Johnny Cage's fatality in Mortal Kombat 2. RayDad decides to take 1 photo of Ana to mark the special day. I don't think that RayDad has quite grasped the concept of digital cameras. You can basically take as many pictures as you want...and they appear INSTANTLY! I get the feeling that RayDad is actually planning on doing a brass rubbing of Ana or placing her in cloth for a few hundred years until her face appears like on the Turin Shroud. Clearly RayDad has the same outdated knowledge of technology that Ana does.
Making their way into a marquee, Ethan, Kate's brother appears and twirls Ana around. She admits that he looks 'as beautiful as Kate.' I think this adds weight to my 'Ana is in the closet' argument. Ethan puts his arm around Ana's waist when...uh-oh...Christian appears. Kate is behind him and tells everyone that Christian is Ana's boyfriend. Once again, Kate is shown up to be a shitty friend, gobbing off about something that is not her news to share. Surely if Ana had have wanted to tell RayDad about Christian, she would have. Upon hearing this news, everyone stands around awkwardly. For some reason, Ethan does not let go of Ana. OH HELLO NEWLY INTRODUCED MAN WHO CAN'T LET GO OF A WOMAN WHEN HE FINDS OUT THAT SHE HAS A BOYFRIEND. I don't know what part Ethan will play in the future of this book, but he's already been set up as a potentially dangerous human being who is possessive of Ana. Lets just add him to the list of men who have complicated ways of dealing with women. I've just done a quick count and this list currently includes every single man that we've met.
Ethan is dragged away by Kate so that he can find someone else's girlfriend to impose himself upon. Christian and RayDad discover that they both like fishing so they have a chat. RayDad genuinely talks about fishing...while Christian uses it as an excuse to run an extended metaphor about sex, talking about his methods for luring little innocent fish and frequently saying 'fisting' instead of 'fishing.' Over the other side of the room, Ana is chatting to Kate...but Christian is watching her intently while he chats to RayDad. For someone who prides himself on being a gentleman, the least that Christian can do is feign interest in the conversation.
RayDad wanders off for a wee so Christian rejoins Ana. She tells him that she wants more from the relationship than being a breathing sex toy. Christian looks at her, says 'Try it' and smiles. In that instant, all of Ana's worries evaporate and she agrees to the contract, the shitty relationship and losing all of her self-respect. Hooray for powerful women with a mind of their own!
RayDad returns, having not washed his hands and Christian departs. He seems completely nonplussed with Christian, telling Ana that as Christian is rich, she could do worse. He's exactly right, people are literally queuing up to rape his daughter. At least there's a chance that Christian will wear a gold-plated condom or shove a diamond encrusted dildo up her ass. I imagine that would chafe slightly on it's way out.
Returning home, Ana checks her phone. Um. What? That's right...Ana did not have her phone on her. I know that this book is set in the olden days, 2011 to be precise...but even back then I think that students would rather die than be separated with their phone...especially if they'd just met a guy. Although, as we've come to realise, Ana does not function like a normal human being. On her phone are 3 missed calls and 2 texts from Christian. There is also a missed call and a voicemail from José where he probably just says 'DIOS MIO' 6 times, before playing the Maracas and hanging up.
Christian's messages say:
'Are you home safe?
In his favour, he does write proper words in his messages...but what drab messages. Not even a kiss or a winky smiley in sight. They sound like the sort of texts that a disapproving Dad would send, not a potential lover.
There is also an e-mail from Christian, asking her if she's made it home safely. Again...if he was so concerned, why didn't he do something about it? He's turned up at a bar because Ana has drunk a Margarita...so if he's so worried about her 'deathtrap' car, why has he not made the short journey from the hotel to her house? Christian's words look as if he's concerned, but his actions tell a very different story. Sadly, Ana concentrates on what he says rather than what he does.
There is another e-mail that she's only recently received. He compliments her then says that he's happy to chat through the contract at any time. At this point, I was secretly hoping that Ana decided against any more discussion. There has been FAR too much of that nonsense so far. Sadly, she doesn't take my advice and tells him that she'd like to see him that evening. He replies within a matter of minutes, letting her know that he's on his way over.
Seconds later...a penis taps at Ana's first floor window. Who could it be???????
Chapter 15 will be up next Monday...I have a wedding to go to tomorrow so I won't be back home for a few days. Needless to say, I'll be working like Rumpelstiltskin when I get back to ensure that the next chapter is up as soon as possible. Follow me on Twitter (@dvdjmskng) for updates.
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