Chapter Twelve - Part Two
They have sex, as you might expect, and Ana comes twice (pur-lease). “How nice was that?” Christian asks, ‘through gritted teeth’. This is genuinely very sinister and menacing and I am not at all comfortable with it. Giving someone two orgasms in the space of a minute does not make this mental manipulation okay.
Ana and Christian get to talking about the contract. Ana tells him the email was a joke and that she’s still considering his offer. They get to talking about the woman who was Christian’s dom when he was a teen; a woman Ana has affectionately christened ‘Mrs Robinson’. Christian reveals they still speak regularly, and Ana is insanely jealous (grow up). “So, you have someone you can discuss your alternative lifestyle with, but I’m not allowed,” she says. This is a really good point. I’d feel proud of Ana if the next sentences out of her mouth weren’t so moronic.
Christian offers Ana the chance to meet this ‘Mrs Robinson’ and talk to her informally about the lifestyle, to help her become more accustomed to how it works. This actually sounds like a great idea – getting advice from someone who’s been there and done it all, as it were. “Is this your idea of a joke?” Ana asks. “No, I’ll do this on my own, thank you very much,” she snaps. What a mature way of dealing with things.
“I didn’t mean to offend you,” says Christian. “I’m not offended,” says Ana. “I’m appalled.” Appalled that Christian has shown some compassion and a degree of faith, inviting you into a personal area of his life in order to help you understand what’s he proposing? But not appalled when he shows up uninvited at your house in the middle of the night to intimidate you into having sex. Priorities.
Ana lets Christian out of the house (he doesn’t ‘do’ staying with his subs), and contemplates that she now feels ‘like a receptacle – an empty vessel to be filled at his whim’. Unfortunate wording, but a really sad, valid point; Christian has completely used to her to satisfy one of his own whims and left her feeling manipulated and bullied into signing his contract. He clearly understands that she has strong feelings for him, and is using them as leverage to get her to do whatever he wants. Lovely.
Kate comes into Ana’s room to find her crying. Ana doesn’t think her relationship with Christian will go anywhere, that she’s in too deep and, here it comes… a moment of beautiful enlightenment… “He uses sex as a weapon.” Halle-bloody-lujah. We are getting somewhere.
Kate, adding to Ana’s misery, tells her that her mother called when she was out running; Bob (Ana’s mother’s husband) suffered a fall and he can’t make her graduation ceremony. This is information that really didn’t have to be delivered in the middle of this scene (where Ana was making such progress), but I’m glad that E. L. James is having a brave stab at some plot, or anything other than a dubiously consented sex session.
Ana says goodnight to Kate and finds an email from Christian, saying that he looks forward to receiving her notes on the contract (sorry, here might be a great place to express my dismay at the ridiculous length and structure of this chapter, yet again). We are then treated to Ana’s notes on the contract, in their entirety. Ana questions the implication in the contract that this whole thing is explore her sexuality and her limits. She says that she doesn’t need a ten page contract to do that, and says that surely this is for Christian’s benefit. Good girl!
She demands a one month trial period rather than the proposed three, refuses to give up all of her weekends (suggesting they meet three out of the four), questions the ‘discipline’ clause (which is not BDSM – more on that later) and refuses fisting and all forms of genital clamp. Wiping tears of pride from my eyes right now – Ana has developed a spine. She knows what she wants and doesn’t want, and she is prepared to tell him so.
I’m aware it’s probably a temporary, collapsible spine, which will fall to pieces the next time she’s with Christian, but I’m just so happy, please allow me to savour this moment.
Chapter orgasm count: 2
Total orgasms: 7
Alcohol unit count: a few sips of wine, fed straight to her via Christian’s mouth. Yummy.
TBC! – I’m sorry that this chapter was quite serious, but honestly, reading it made me so very depressed for all the women who are gagging to have this kind of relationship (no pun intended). Funnies will resume when Ana stops being a drip and Christian stops being a psychopath (so maybe never).