Bitten: Predator (chapter 10)

Recap: Fuck this book.

Elena puts on her “sexual predator” look, which consists of a nice knee-length dress:

It was gorgous indigo silk, knee length with no fancy trim or other adornment. Simple, yet elegant. To keep it casual, I decided to forgo nylons and wear sandals.

Because I don’t even know. I just don’t. This is the madonna-whore complex again, where a woman who desires sex and is aware of her own sexuality is a “sexual predator”. I wonder if the author even understands what the term “sexual predator” means or if she’s just saying she’s a predator (as in a wolf) who is sexualized?

She goes to a rave. This is totally safe and logical. Apparently she’s bait because she smells like werewolf and female. She starts drinking alcohol.

The mutt’s name is Scott Brandon.

I mentally tried to pull forward his page from the Pack’s dossier but couldn’t. It had been too long. I should have done my homework before I left.

Oh yes, ladies and gentlemen, she’s the best. The only one who can keep track of all the mutts. I think she’s only used for this because she presents an irresistible lure — in other words, Jeremy is using her for her sex appeal in the same way that he painted her as being a purely sexual being. Jeremy, just like Clay, only sees her as a walking vagina.

Her plan seems to be lure him in with sex, piss him off, then lure him outside where he’ll be too pissed to notice Clay before Clay can kill him. I’m trying very, very hard not to slip into victim blaming by accident, because nobody should be the victim of violence or sexual violence, but this just sounds like the makings of a bad plan. If the world we have been introduced to is one in which werewolves, due to their curse, cannot or will not control themselves, baiting them and drawing them out seems like a good way to get hurt. Clearly the better solution to this situation is for werewolves to find a way to control their instincts, but intentionally angering someone who is likely to hit you is not a smart plan in any situation. Is it even necessary? Why not just hang around until after he leaves the rave and jump him then instead of doing this whole dance of sex and dominance and hoping it goes well?

She seems to trust Clay implicitly; she keeps thinking about how Clay is so very dangerous and therefore the mutt doesn’t stand a chance against him. But, as she rapidly remembers, Clay is outside. She’s the one in danger.

I couldn’t afford a scene, and somehow the sight of a woman brawling with a man is always an attention-grabber, particularly if she can pitch him across the room.

Random aside: why is that sentence gendered? Two guys fighting at a rave draws attention rapidly, as does two women fighting. Anyone throwing people across the room is going to get attention. Why harp on the fact that she’s a woman?

The mutt pins her against a wall, calling her “a bitch in heat” and forcing contact between his clothed genitals and her body so she is aware of his arousal. As if that wasn’t enough, we’re next presented with a Villain Rant to endure:

“A woman like you deserves better. You need someone to teach you what it’s like to kill, really kill, not bring down some mindless rabbit or deer, but a human. A thinking, breathing, conscious human.[…] Have you ever seen someone’s eyes when they know they are about to die, at the moment when they realize you are death?”

Anyone got a puppy for him to kick, just to round out the characterization?

She does a partial-transform in response, digging claws into his gut until he starts to Change. She goes to drag him out of the club, but makes a wrong turn and ends up in the bathrooms, where she locks him in. Elena pauses for another round of self-victim-blaming:

How had I let this happen? I’d had him. At the moment where he’d offered to show me how to kill a human, I’d had him. All I had to do was say yes. Pick some guy leaving the bar and tail him into the street.

See, and this is why I feel gross pointing out Elena’s unwise conduct. She should not have gone into the club with the intent to antagonize someone who is likely to react very badly, but she doesn’t reflect on that. Instead, the plan was “perfect”, but her negative reaction to sheer, over-the-top evil being thrown in her face was the “problem”. It’s a nice snapshot of the theme of the book: disgusting, horrendous violence is happening all around her, with most of the men in her life acting like perfectly awful human beings, but the problem is Elena’s reaction to their antics rather than their antics themselves. Rape culture in a nutshell.

Brandon escapes, bursting out of the bathroom. End of chapter.

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5 Responses to Bitten: Predator (chapter 10)

  1. Firedrake says:

    The patrons of the “rave”: … “most sticking to Millers and marijuana but a few shooting heroin as openly as they downed their drinks”. Um, Ms Armstrong, Heroin Does Not Work Like That. It is not a party drug. (Also, Ecstacy, way more likely in… when was this published? 2001. Yup, still around. Did Not Do The Research.)

    Here’s the smarter plan I came up with while I was reading this chapter, which sounds a lot like the one Elena manages eventually: she agrees to go along with him, lets him escort her outside while he’s still blinded by lust, then all her big strong buddies leap on him and tear him into tiny pieces. Why is this not Plan A?

  2. Pingback: Deconstruction Round Up, July 28 2013 | The Slacktiverse

  3. Firedrake says:

    Wondering whether/when you’re planning to revisit this book. Now that there’s a TV series and all…

  4. Pingback: Bitten: Chaos (Chapter 11) | Raven Wings

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