Sunday, December 1, 2013

Danse Macabre--chapter 35

So. Now we're getting a step by step of the ultrasound.

Anybody remember back when this book was supposed to be about vampire lords coming to St. Louis to watch a ballet and maybe get a lot of people killed? "Ultrasounds" weren't part of that deal.

Logic fail bonus round! You are a doctor with an unprecidented medical situation, and WAY too many people want to watch. Do you:
A. Politely request the person in question to reduce the number of non-medical personell to a reasonable quantity (two or three?)
B. Politely request that both non-medical and non-necessary medical personell exit the room?
C. Throw the medical personell out because fuck that "Educated in exactly this" shit. 

Dr. North beat me to it, by saying, “We don’t need this many people.”
 One of the interns said, “Let’s clear some of her people out.”
 I looked right at him, and said, “Get out!” 
He started to argue. Dr. North said, “Get out.”
Of course we do. I am sure that Micah, Richard, Graham, Haven and Body Guards X and Y are all much more suited to this potential medical emergancy than the kid who just spent the last several years learning this shit. The intern might not know exactly what to do, but he probably understands medicine better than Anita.

The nurses got squeezed out completely, though one of the doctors was a woman.
Why did we bring this up? Seriously. This entire sentence (paragraph, actually. It stands on its lonesome) is completely mystifying to me. Why is it on its own? Why do we have to know that one of the doctors is a woman? WHY ARE YOU THROWING ALL THE NURSES OUT? For FUCK'S SAKE, the "Throw this idiot out" list should run Boyfriends, Bodyguards, Interns, and then maybe kind of sort of possibly the junior nurses who don't know as much about medical emergencies than the doctors. But unlike interns, who are still trying to figure out which end of the stethoscope you listen to, odds are those nurses know their shit, and know how to apply their shit if routine suddenly becomes Code Blue.  Does this sentence serve any purpose other than establishing a gender-based hirearchy where absolutely no such thing was needed? WHY ARE WE MAKING ANITA'S SONOGRAM A DICK MEASURING CONTEST? WHY IS THIS NECESSARY. I. DO NOT. UNDERSTAND.

Claudia finally pulls some of their people out.

...Jesus. How many people are watching this? Don't they have closed circuit cameras? WHAT DOCTOR WOULD ALLOW THEIR PATIENT TO BE BADGERED LIKE THIS?

I'm revising my opinion of Dr. North. He's not laid back. He's so passive you could shit on his desk and he wouldn't bother calling the haz-mat people until after you'd checked out of the hospital.

And of course Claudia pulls the Not!Haven werelions. Because this is a plot thing, I guess.

I’d had to take my jacket off, which showed the gun and its shoulder holster. I was using the extra belt I’d kept at Jean-Claude’s, but I was down two, so I’d have to send Nathaniel shopping for more leather belts soon. The lone female intern kept looking at the gun, with quick flashes of her eyes, as if she’d never seen one before.
I am so glad that we know that Anita has belt issues and that women are universal chicken-shits around guns. We really needed to know these things. OOOOH. ANITA BROUGHT A GUN INTO A HOSPITAL. EDGY EDGY EDGY. Not. Leaving aside that it is probably a felony to do so unless you're an active duty cop (IDK about cop rules, but I DO know that it's illegal to concealed carry inside of a hospital.) this is an active hospital, and I'm pretty sure Ms. Intern had to do a stent in the ER, unless she just got out of med school (in which case, somebody out in the hallway probably outranks her) so she has probably seen a gun before. In fact, if this ER is like most ERs, she has probably seen guns in places guns normally do not go. ER doctors are the people who have to deal with things like concrete enemas (Don't google it. Please don't) and triage. A gun isn't that impressive.

 They discuss Micah's vasectomy. The doctor finds out that they clipped the tubes with silver, and recommends that Micah get peroidic tests for silver poisoning because, you know, that shit's bad. In fact, that probably sits somewhere between making medical instruments out of copper, and making them out of lead.

  • It was gray, white, and black, and fuzzy. If it had been my television at home I’d have been calling the cable company and raising hell.

We've all seen sonogram pictures before, Anita. We all know what it looks like.

So after a few minutes of poking Anita in the stomach, Dr. North declares that she is not pregnant. Anita asks how she could come back positive for having birth defects she doesn't actually have, and the doctor says "Fuck if I know".

“I don’t know for certain, but I would guess that the same enzymes the test looks for would come back positive if you yourself were a lycanthrope. It’s designed to test human mothers, not mothers who are already lycanthropes.”

Congrats. That's the shittiest test in the universe. And so is the one for Vlad's, because apparently having vampire spit in your bloodstream gives it a false positive. Which would be INCREDIBLY shitty for women at risk for that birth defect, because they're probably donating blood on a regular basis. There must be a lot of unnecessary abortions of badly wanted babies in this universe. If I were a lawyer, I'd be working my way up to the granddaddy of all class-action suits.

“May I ask a question, please?” It was the female intern, Nichols.
 North gave her a cold look. “It depends on the question, doctor.” He said the doctor part like it was an insult.
What the fuck is up with this? This has been consistent through the whole chapter.  I just realized that LKH probably wrote the nurses as all women, rather than mixed, so that means this whole chapter has been one long sausage fest. WHY ARE WE WRITING LIKE THIS.

And of course, rather than asking "Why would Vlad's trip on vampire spit when vampire lovers donate on a regular basis? Wouldn't that be, like, something you'd rule out in the course of developing the test?" the girl asks a clueless, "I know nothing about medicine or my universe" question.

“There’s a lot of bruising around the bite. I thought it (vampire bites) was just two neat puncture marks.”

LKH seriously expects us to believe a medical intern doesn't understand how bruising works, or why a post-mortem injury would look different from one on a live person. She also expects us to believe that, in a universe where vampires are not only accepted, but mainstreamed and legal to marry, an intern in an active hosptial with an ER would have never seen a vampire bite on a live person before.

Folks, I want you to think of the number of ways there are for you to hurt yourself during kinky sex, and throw in fangs. And a lot of times, the interns have to deal with it because the full doctors do not want to. Trust me. This kid would have seen vampire hickies before.

And of course, Anita gets to show off her knowledge in how vampires work, all of which you should already know if you're still clinging to the faint hope these books would be, you know, good. And everyone (male) praises her knowledge and asks her to come to the hospital to give lectures because they sure are seeing a lot of this paranormal stuff.

The female doctor then paws all of Anita's scars, and she explains how she got them all again. Once again, everybody assumes the cross-shaped burn means vampire and not "Hot metal on skin" even though EVERYBODY KNOWS ANITA IS NOT A VAMPIRE.

Anita then realizes that all this means she isn't pregnant. And of course, she bursts into tears and describes six different emotions, before ending with "Well, I regret not being preggers a little, because a baby would have been kind of nice."

Because all women really do, underneath it all, want babies. 


I am now going to wash this chapter away on a tidal wave of tequila. See you tomorrow.


  1. I think LKH might be a narcissist. I try to avoid making comments about her personally because that is a slippery slope. I've seen far too many people call her names and speculate about her in horrible ways. But...I feel like I recognize a lot of what she does from my own childhood and I think it might be why her prose is so emotionally tone deaf.

    1. I think "Let's make my (completely fucking unnecessary) sonogram a standing room only spectacle for the masses" might have been your first clue.

      I am trying VERY hard to give LKH the dignity and respect due every human being. I think I may give myself a hernia in the process. She's due it because all people deserve it, but oh my Fucking GOD. The other half of that is if I go down that rabbit hole I am NEVER coming back out, and LKH is NOT worth that kind of dedication.

    2. The way she can't even allow her fictional creation to take and act on reasonable criticism is such a giant red flag, I can't even.

      It's tough not to comment on her personally because frankly she's flung that door wide open herself, but still. Definitely not worth the dedication.

    3. I'm not going to say "Some authors invite it" because, frankly, even having sex on a rooftop isn't inviting it (See: David and Bathsheba). But even if your home life is completely fucked, you ought to have the self-awareness as a minimum to preserve and/or re-enforce healthy boundaries for your readers. Re-enforcing bad shit is not now and never will be okay.

      ...and I still don't get the random fucking misogyny in this chapter. It doesn't even re-enforce LKH's theoretical narcissim. What the fucking hell.

    4. I'm sorry if that came across weird. All I meant is that she discusses her personal life very openly, and that is a cue to the average person that those topics are fair game.

    5. No, I understand. I wanted to kind of commisurate. Given the wealth of info out there thanks to oversharing, it's possible to draw certain conclusions. Combine the overshared info with the contents of her books, it gets really creepy, really fast.

  2. Oh my god, what a circus. What a clusterfuck. This is so patently ridiculous.

    Hahaha, yeeeah, of course the one lady intern is the one freaked out by the gun. Subtle, LKH.

    …wow, that Vlad test is indeed failtastic.



    It is a rule that once per book Anita lists all her scars and how she got them