Christian Is Still Sad: Grey Chapter 22

Posted on September 8, 2015 by

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Last week, when we hit the part where the original Fifty Shades of Grey book ended and then I said that there’s still another five chapters to go, a few people starting asking questions, mostly along the lines of, “Sweet merciful lord, WHY?”

To be totally fair, seeing the aftermath of the breakup from Christian’s perspective is a totally legitimate thing to include in the parallel novel from Christian’s perspective. The problem, as it always is, is Christian Grey:

Grey: Sunday, June 6, 2011

We open with Christian kicking around his apartment, unable to sleep. We’re at two days after the breakup, so if you thought Christian Grey was an angry character before…

For fuck’s sake, she said she’d try! […] She said she’d try, but she fell at the first hurdle.

"bitch please"

He does occasionally recognize that what happened – eg, constantly pressuring her to do sex stuff that she wasn’t comfortable with until she reluctantly said she’d try it and then physically beating her with a belt – is mostly his fault.

she asked me to, and I was too impetuous and selfish to resist the temptation. […] What a fucking fool I am.
How could she trust me after that? It’s right that she’s gone.

Christian considers getting drunk, and we learn some intriguing details there:

I have not been drunk since I was fifteen— well, once, when I was twenty-one. I loathe the loss of control: I know what alcohol can do to a man.

This isn’t a bad bit of shading on Christian’s character. It makes sense that his abusive childhood would result in him having this negative view about abusing alcohol to dealing with emotional pain. Of course, this would be a lot better if we didn’t already know from the other books that the thing that causes him so much anguish that he breaks and turns to alcohol is… his wife getting pregnant…

the office jim no

Christian has a flashback/nightmare from a time that his mother’s pimp kicked him around, which prompts him to think about how an unexpected benefit of his relationship with Ana was that when she slept by his side, his nightmares went away.

It never occurred to me to sleep with any of my subs. Well, I never felt the inclination. […] It took an inebriated innocent to show me how restful it could be.

Because none of the benefits Ana can offer Christian could possibly come as a result of her choosing to do something for him, only things from when he took advantage of her. I’m really glad we have a whole five extra days for insights into the terrifying hell that is love in an E L James novel.

And it wouldn’t be an E L James novel if it weren’t as batshit absurd as it is batshit horrifying, so Christian resorts to going to bed with the model glider Ana gave him. Not making this up. Christian Grey is cuddling with a toy airplane because it reminds him of Ana.

Feeling a little foolish, I take the glider with me to bed. […] It was her last gift to me. Her first gift being… what?
Of course. Herself.

octopus nope

Although I kinda like how Christian spells it out, like E L James was seriously concerned someone would get this far in the book and not follow this one.

The next day at work, Christian does Business, which are 100% the best subplots in this book, because none of it means anything:

  • Ros confirms that Detroit is an objectively better location than Savannah for the development plant, or whatever the hell it is that they’re building. It just occurred to me I don’t actually know.
  • Olivia is still being a “silly girl” around Christian, and he thinks about transferring to her to a different department. Again.

And even if, for some reason, getting more information about Christian as a businessman was something you were genuinely interested in, Grey has actually managed to make Christian look like a pretty shitty businessman. Here he is literally calling up the head of his R&D department to make a custom stand for his model glider instead of just buying this product that almost certainly already exists:

“Barney, I need you to make me a stand for a model glider.”

But don’t worry, Christian has plenty of thoughts about his love life at work too! Unnecessary spoiler: they’re all awful.

No, [Ana] won’t forget me. Women always remember the first man they fucked, don’t they?

Whereas conversely, Christian has never once mentioned Elena in this book.

Following this fear that Ana will just forget him (despite being the first man she fucked? Say WHA?), Christian orders her flowers. E L James hits peak hilarious/horrifying E L James when Christian has to think of a message to go with the flowers:

Come back. I’m sorry. I won’t hit you again.

For some reason, he instead opts to congratulate her on her first day at work and to thank her for the glider. Thus depriving us of a much better book where Christian ends up on some kind of watch list.

Speaking of watch lists, get ready for a little something we like to call “E L James does not totally get that stalking isn’t romantic”.  I mean, it is no surprise to regular readers that on a scale of 1 to Cullen, Christian goes beyond to like 3.4 Cullens. (Side note: a “Cullen” is now the unit of measurement for degree of stalking.) And this has been a longtime criticism of Fifty Shades. Since, like, day negative seventy. So maybe in her parallel novel…

You already know which one it is.

“Taylor, can we make a detour?”
“Where to, sir?”
“Can you drive past Miss Steele’s apartment?”
“Yes, sir.”

I’m not sure which bothers me more: how Taylor is totally chill with this and never shows any signs of thinking “man, maybe I shouldn’t be complicit in this”, or how we’re supposed to believe that Ana’s apartment that she pays for with an entry-level job in the publishing industry is somehow on multibillionaire Christian Grey’s commute.

“Drive slow,” I instruct Taylor as we near her building.
The lights are on.
She’s home!
I hope she’s alone

scream please leave me alone

“Again, sir?” Taylor asks, as we slowly cruise past

TAYLOR, DO NOT ENCOURAGE HIM.

When Christian gets home, he wanders around his apartment, thinking of more places he would have liked to bang Ana,

I wander listlessly into my library. It’s ironic I never showed her this room, given her love of literature.

That’s not irony. That’s just stupid.

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Posted in: Grey