I have returned. Well, I actually returned last week, but jetlag and work and going for a load of pints and a hangover and more work and finally unpacking my suitcase and thinking I wasn't jetlagged anymore before bursting into tears during an episode of The Mindy Project all conspired to keep me from bothering my hole to sit down and write. But I'm here now! And I may try to squash the whole ridiculous-amazing Caribbean cruise experience into a blog post at a later date, if I can get around to it.
But for now, let's see what's been going down in Tedious Fuckery Town! (Spoiler: infuriating shit, but what's new.)
(Catch up here: Volumes 1, 2, 3 and 4.)
The following morning (because most chapters end with them fucking/going to sleep and then start with the next morning) Christian tells Ana that he has to go to New York on business and will be away for one night that week. Ana asks if he's going there in Charlie Tango, the helicopter that was sabotaged, because going across the entire country of America in a helicopter seems plausible to her. Ana then brings up the loaded gun in the study. It turns out that it's Leila's gun and Christian gets all prissy and tells Ana that he doesn't want her "messing with guns", even though it turns out that she actually knows more about firearms than he does.
“I don’t want you messing with guns. I hope you put the safety back on.”
I blink at him, momentarily stupefied. “Christian, there’s no safety on that revolver. Don’t you know anything about guns?”
His eyes widen. “Um...no.”
So why the fuck do you have a LOADED GUN IN YOUR HOUSE YOU MASSIVE BAG OF ASSHOLES? It turns out that Christian is very anti-gun and supports a bunch of gun control bills in Washington or something. Which is all well and good, but just makes even less sense for him to KEEP ONE IN HIS HOUSE.
Ana asks about Leila and it turns out that she's with her parents in Connecticut and has enrolled in art school. Apparently she's all better now and Ana's reaction to the news isn't "well that's nice for her" or "shouldn't she be somewhere secure, seeing as it was mere months since she had a breakdown and tried to kill me?" Nope, Ana's jealous of her. Again. And wonders why Christian feels responsible for her. It's definitely not because of the sustained emotional abuse he put her through, which was probably what made her snap in the first place. Ana goes to work and there's paaages of irritating emails full of terrible flirting and SUPER witty signatures such as "Priapic CEO, Grey Enterprises Holdings Inc.", "Now Moist Commissioning Editor, SIP" and "CEO & Ass man, Grey Enterprises Holdings Inc." SUCH. A. DELIGHT.
Christian goes to New York and Ana has plans to meet Kate for a few drinks after work. Christian calls her when he lands and asks what she's getting up to with Kate that evening. Ana's immediate thought is "Oh no", which is such a great little indicator for how horrible their relationship is. Ana tells him they're going for a drink and then heading back to the penthouse, but Christian's not having it, even though Ana would have Ryan, Sawyer and a new lady bodyguard called Prescott with her at all times.
“Ana, I don’t want to keep you from your friends. (AHAHAHA! YES YOU ABSOLUTELY DO YOU MASSIVE LIAR!) But I thought she was coming back to the apartment.”
“Okay,” I acquiesce. “We’ll stay in.”
Cool. Cool cool cool.
Also, as soon as it was pointed out that Prescott is a black woman, I was sure that Ana would be all over her, as she's usually all "I like them immediately" whenever she meets a minority, because she's definitely not racist. However, when Ana is talking about her, she says "I’ve yet to warm to her, maybe because she’s too cool and professional." Which is EXACTLY how Taylor and Sawyer and Ryan and Reynolds and Phillipe and Gaston and the rest of the clown car full of security dudes have been so far, as that's called DOING YOUR FUCKING JOB in that particular line of work. But if she's not fawning all over Ana, then I suppose she must be an icy bitch.
Kate arrives at the office at the end of the day and convinces Ana to go for a cocktail instead of going straight home. This is definitely going to go well. The security detail tell her they're supposed to go to the apartment, but Ana insists that it's just one drink and they make their way to a bar. On the way in the car, Ana finds out from Kate that security has been tripled for all the Greys and is annoyed that Kate seems to know more about the whole impending danger situation than she does, because Christian won't tell her anything. They go for strawberry mojitos and bitch about Gia (who had a fling with Elliot before, like some kind of terrible person), engage in some pregnancy foreshadowing (please just get it over with) and have no dinner and a whole bunch of drinks. On her way home, Ana checks her phone to find five missed calls, a text and an email from Christian, so you can guess how he's been reacting to his wife going for a few with her mate.
I'm not sure who I'm more annoyed at here really, because Ana KNEW that he'd freak the fuck out if she went for drinks without telling him, and didn't have the cop on to check her phone every so often. HOWEVER, Christian can go fuck himself for being mad at her for seeing her friend and not sealing herself up in their sterile, charmless museum of an apartment forever and ever. They're both terrible, is what I'm saying.
Ana gets back to the apartment with Sawyer beside her, only to find a smashed vase in the lobby. Sawyer tells her to stay put and runs in to see what's happened. Jack Hyde is unconscious, slumped on the floor and Ryan is standing over him. It turns out that Ryan saw him coming in through the service entrance on the CCTV and then let him in because he "knew we'd have him", which seems like a ludicrously stupid and risky plan, as Jack was armed and this was all about ten minutes before everyone else got back. Ana suggests that they call the police (FINALLY!) but the worst security team in the world all just look dumbly at each other because they need Taylor to tell them what to do and he wasn't answering his phone. Ana tried calling Christian but his phone is off "because he’s so mad" so she leaves him a voicemail saying there's been an incident but everyone's ok. The cops arrive and the detective tells her to come to the station the next day to make a statement, instead of just doing it right there, because reasons.
Ana wakes up later that night to find Christian sitting across from her, just watching her again like the enormous creep that he is. He'll barely talk to her though, so I don't know why he's fucking hanging around there in the first place. He tells her that he's "burning with rage" but he's also sad or something? UGHHHH I don't caaare.
“I want to punish you,” he whispers. “Really beat the shit out of you,” he adds.
Also, correct me if I'm wrong here, but is Christian mad at her for NOT being there when Jack tried to break in and kidnap her while armed with a gun? I mean, surely the normal reaction to this situation would be to be super relieved that your wife wasn't stolen or whatever. LIKE A PRICELESS ASSET.
He tells Ana to go back to sleep and when she wakes up in the morning, he's about to get into the shower and is still mad at her. So she follows him into the shower, because sex usually solves all their problems, but Christian turns her down, which sends Ana into a ridiculously overdramatic spiral.
I release him, immediately. He’s saying no? My mind goes into free fall - has this ever happened before? My subconscious shakes her head, her lips pursed. She glares at me over her half-moon glasses, wearing her you’ve-really-fucked-up-this-time look. I feel like I’ve been slapped, hard. Rejected. And a lifetime of insecurity spawns the ugly thought he doesn’t want me anymore. I gasp as the pain sears through me.
Oh my GAAAAD, the pain sears through her? It's probably cystitis from all the non-stop fucking.
Ana gets dressed for work, throwing on her "favorite plum dress and black sandals", so I guess we've just given up on the fact that it's Kate's motherfucking dress. She goes to work, accompanied by Prescott, while Christian sulks in his study. He's arranged for the detective to come to her office for her statement and emails to let her know, kicking off another tedious fucking merry-go-round of messages going back and forth. Ana begins to wonder if he came back from New York because she went for drinks, or because of the Jack attack. He doesn't answer her so she points out that he doesn't actually tell her anything about what's going on, so maybe if he kept her in the loop then she'd have been more careful or whatever.
She also keeps referring to him as "Mr. Burning Rage" throughout the day. Other things that she calls Christian throughout this book:
Mr. Unbelievably Angry
Mr. Mercurial gets no less than four mentions, so I guess that makes him the boss of this depressing little gang. Worst. Mr. Men. Ever.
Ana gets home, again accompanied by Prescott ("She’s been so quiet today. I think I prefer her this way." FUCK YOUUUU) but on the way, her heart has grown "heavier and heavier" because she knows that once she gets home, she and Christian are probably going to have a massive row and it's just really sad because her life is basically going from fights with her horrible husband to sex with her horrible husband and nothing in between. Anyway, she arrives home to find Christian waiting for her, in those jeans, his sexy sexytime jeans (we don't know if they're hanging from his hips in that way though, which is disappointing) and it looks like some shit's about to go down. But we're going to have to wait and see if they just bone their problems away, as usual. THE SUSPENSE.