Dec 252012
 

We’re over the hump, more than halfway through this… thing. I have to stay focused and soldier on, only concern myself with the BDSM bits, not that there have been many in the last couple of chapters. We’ve moved into what amounts to your basic “shopping and fucking” novel.

Supporting my contention that Ana’s a lush, when she wakes up next to Christian, even she thinks she drank too much last night. Ana and Christian do a little play wrestling in bed.

“Oh really?” He rolls suddenly so that he’s fully on top of me, pressing me into the mattress, holding my wrists above my head. He gazes down at me.
“I’d fight you any day, Mrs. Grey. In fact, subduing you in bed is a fantasy of mine.” He kisses my throat.
What?
“I thought you subdued me all the time.” I gasp as he nibbles my earlobe.
“Hmm . . . but I’d like some resistance,” he murmurs, his nose skirting my jaw.

This so mild it’s barely worth commenting on. I will say that you need to calibrate the amount of resistance in resistance play, in which the sub is expected to physically and/or verbally resist. This is when a safeword is more necessary. You also need to consider the relative size and strength of the people involved, and Christian’s significantly bigger than Ana. Note that she gets on top only because he moves her into that position.

Abruptly he shifts and takes me with him, rolling over so I’m straddling him. I grab his hands, pinning them to the side of his head, and ignore the protesting ache from my hand. My hair falls in a chestnut veil around us, and I move my head so that the strands tickle his face. He jerks his face away but doesn’t try to stop me.

This goes on for a bit. Interesting fact: rhesus monkeys in the wild fight other monkeys, but they also have play fighting, which involves different, more acrobatic moves, and sometimes a larger monkey will let the smaller monkey win.

“Oh, baby, fight me,” he murmurs.
I twist and writhe, trying to free myself from his merciless hold, but it’s hopeless. He’s much stronger than me. He’s gently biting at my lower lip as his tongue tries to invade my mouth. And I realize I don’t want to resist him. I want him—now, like I always do. I stop fighting and fervently return his kiss. I don’t care that I haven’t brushed my teeth. I don’t care that we’re supposed to be playing some game. Desire, hot and hard, surges through my bloodstream, and I’m lost. Unhooking my ankles, I wrap my legs around his hips and use my heels to push his pajamas down over his behind.

Once again, they can’t get on the same page.

“You wanted resistance,” I say, panting. He rears up over me and gazes down, his hands still locked around my wrists. I place my heels under his behind and push. He doesn’t move. Gah!
“You don’t want to play nice?” he asks astonished, his eyes alight with excitement.
“I just want you to make love to me, Christian.” Could he be any more obtuse? First we’re fighting and wrestling then he’s all tender and sweet. It’s confusing. I’m in bed with Mr. Mercurial.

When you do kink, the two aren’t separate.

He shifts so that we’re face to face. “Yes. You. Calling the shots. It’s . . .
different.”
“Good different or bad different?” I trail a finger over his lips. His brow furrows, as if he doesn’t quite understand the question. Absentmindedly, he kisses my finger.
“Good different,” he says, but he doesn’t sound convinced.
“You’ve never indulged this little fantasy before?” I blush as I say it. Do I really want to know any more about my husband’s colorful . . . um, kaleidoscopic sex life before me? My subconscious eyes me warily over her tortoiseshell half-moon specs. Do you really want to go there?
“No, Anastasia. You can touch me.” It’s a simple explanation that speaks volumes. Of course, the fifteen couldn’t.

This makes sense, that Christian was so touch-phobic that he couldn’t do this kind of give-and-take play with the other subs.

We also get some hints about the Elena relationship, which in the hands of a writer that knew what they were doing, could have been interesting.

“Mrs. Robinson could touch you.” I murmur the words before my brain registers what I’ve said. Shit. Why did I mention her?
He stills. His eyes widen with his oh-no-where’s-she-going-with-this expression. “That was different,” he whispers.
Suddenly I want to know. “Good different or bad different?”
He gazes at me. Doubt and possibly pain flit across his face, and fleetingly he looks like a man drowning.
“Bad, I think.” His words are barely audible.

People do change over their sexual careers. The thrill wears off, they expand their sexual roles and their sexual techniques, they refine their sexual ideas. It is a little troubling to think that Christian’s submission to Elena (separate from the age issue) must have come from pathology, and Christian’s relentless efforts to control Ana is more healthy, as EL James apparently thinks.

The next day, Ana observes:

Christian casually bends to pick up what looks like a bamboo cane that must have been blown over or discarded in the flowerbed. Pausing, Christian absentmindedly holds out the cane at arm’s length as if weighing it carefully and swipes it through the air, just once.
Oh . . .

Okay, Ana’s turned on by the idea of Christian with a cane (hopefully not a bamboo cane, as they can splinter). This is one of the frustrating moments that suggest that Ana is indeed fairly kinky, but Christian is jerking her around so much that she has no chance to explore this side of herself.

And then they fly back to Seattle. That’s at least a couple of chapters and a few subplots that are  completely redundant. By the way, the whole Gia/Elliot thing is wrapped up in one paragraph as just a misunderstanding. Whoever was supposed to edit this book obviously didn’t give a crap. “Yeah, boss, I did the edits, and the copy-edits too. Yeah, finished it over the weekend. Well, it was really clean copy to begin with.”

All it means is Ana and Christian had a second honeymoon (about a week after the first) and now they have to go back to the same tortured cycle of tension-explosion-makeup-calm we were doing before. Christian is still keeping Ana in the dark about security and the possibility that Jack had an accomplice. Nothing has changed.

Ana does ask Christian where he is vis a vis kink.

“Do you miss it?”
“Miss what?” he asks, perplexed.
“You know. The caning . . . and stuff,” I whisper, embarrassed.
He stares at me, his gaze impassive. Then doubt crosses his face, his where-is-she-going-with-this look.

“No Anastasia, I don’t.” His voice is steady and quiet. He caresses my cheek.
“Dr. Flynn said something to me when you left, something that’s stayed with me.
He said I couldn’t be that way if you weren’t so inclined. It was a revelation.” He stops, and frowns. “I didn’t know any other way, Ana. Now I do. It’s been educational.”
“Me, educate you?” I scoff.
His eyes soften. “Do you miss it?” he asks.
Oh! “I don’t want you to hurt me, but I like to play, Christian. You know that. If you wanted to do something . . .” I shrug, gazing at him.

“Something?”
“You know, with a flogger or your crop—” I stop, blushing.
He raises his brow, surprised. “Well . . . we’ll see. Right now, I’d like some good old-fashioned vanilla.” His thumb skirts my bottom lip, and he kisses me once more.

EL James seems to think that BDSM is about hurting, a way for severely damaged people like Christian and Leila and Elena to get their rocks , and what Ana calls play or “kinky fuckery” isn’t BDSM at all. Actually, there are people who play far more heavily (such as caning) than Ana does without being pathological, but EL James doesn’t seem to grasp that.

Ana should be actively participating in her own BDSM experience, not shrugging and saying, “If you want to…” She has to acknowledge and admit her own desires.

The other question is, will Christian give up kink, or at least the further levels of kink, for Ana? Given EL James’ track record, I don’t expect a resolution to this plotline.

More emails. Spare me.

Oh, and Leila shows up.

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  One Response to “The Curious Kinky Person’s Guide to Fifty Shades Freed, Chapter 15”

  1. That therapist should have been teaching him calming techniques to manage his anger. The idea that any competent therapist would teach their client to take it out on a third person is ridiculous. We don’t even tell clients to punch things anymore. He also should have been teaching him to loose that need for control, not encouraging it. The therapist is getting his own category called Psychology FAIL when I get to him.

    Sorry about the constant commenting. I know I’m late and I read way too fast. I hope I’m not spamming you!

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