They send for Doctor Lillian while Richard tries to put his knee back together. Anita orders her bodyguards to secure Haven. IDK the fact that this dude is a motherfucking MOB ENFORCER should probably have been your first clue that he is not a good person.
You know, my favorite supernatural characters in this series are probably Richard and Dead Dave. Who is Dead Dave? Dead Dave is a former cop turned vampire that runs a bar, who hasn't been mentioned in about ten books or so. I like him because there's something normal about him. Same goes with Richard. He's not a mob boss or a pimp (Jean Claude's a pimp. He just does boys more frequently than girls. And I mean that in the "arrest this abusive manipulative son of a bitch before he gets somebody killed" sense of the word "pimp"). He's a school teacher who just wants to be a fucking school teacher. He has to deal with nasty shit, but his normal life is kind of his salvation. There's something there that isn't all this supernatural nonsense. That's probably why Richard as a character doesn't fucking work the way LKH wants him to, and never has. He's got somewhere to go to get away from all this shit that reminds him that hey, life isn't supposed to be this fucked up. LKH chooses to view this aspect of character development as a negative, when it's probably the only reason Richard is the only character in this book that still has a soul. Edward's thing with Donna and the other kids (Which FYI might just be stolen directly from Darkly Dreaming Dexter, as there are a LOT of simularities) has the same kind of thing. It says that this is normal. This is what normal looks like. This is an anchor point so that when everything else goes to shit, you realize that normal is still there.
I would really, REALLY love to get to see Anita have a normal touchpoint. Just one. A scene in which she and a friend order hamburgers or something. That's why those scenes get included in these books a lot. It's not about filler. It's about providing that touchstone for both the characters and the readers so that when things go to shit, you realize just how far sideways everything has slid. But she doesn't get to have those anymore.
She shook her head. “Anita, if you add this guy to your men, then someone had to beat the shit out of him, at least once, so he’d know who was boss.”I would also love to dedicate an entire fucking series to breaking that concept (that dominance and instinct=violent abuse of other people) into little itty bitty tiny pieces. DECENT PEOPLE SHOULD NOT PUT UP WITH THIS SHIT.
Oh, hey, we haven't had blatant sexism for a couple chapters.
Her dark eyes widened, surprised. “Does my opinion count?”
“I trust your judgment, and you’re the only girl here.”
“Why do you need a girl opinion?” she asked.
“Because I’m tired of all the damn testosterone.”One: I'd much rather get an opinion of a potential sociopath from a same sex/non attractive sex person than one of the opposite/attractive sex because sociopaths are really good at manipulating somebody they want to screw. They won't put the same effort into manipulating someone they cannot directly benefit from. Asking opinions re: dangerous people is all about asking the people in the best position to see the danger coming, who are also at the least risk of getting snowed by the asshole. In this case, Anita is actually asking the right person for an opinion, but it's not because Claudia is a girl. It's because Claudia is an employee that Haven OBVIOUSLY views as invisible and not worth his time. He's much more likely to fuck up in front of Claudia than he is Anita or one of her men.
Two: All the guys have FLAT ACROSS THE BOARD told you that Haven is bad news. What do you think Claudia is going to say? "Yummy?"
“I’m not sure I’ll say anything that the men won’t say on this one, Anita. Estrogen doesn’t make me stupid,A grown-ass woman wrote that. What the fucking hell.
So Anita stumbles around the room on some kind of bizzare fear high while she tries not to latch onto Haven as her "animal to call" and falls into Jean Claude's arms, and of course Mr. Enabler is all "You've already broken his ties to you and you like each other so YOU ARE OBLIGATED TO TAKE HIM" and Micah points out that Haven will be Rex to Anita's Regina because OF FUCKING COURSE Anita gets to be the Lion Queen.
The next chapter opens with Anita blathering about how Richard has "done so much right" in the last few hours that she's willing to cut him lots of slack.
That "slack" involves letting him heal on his own without being bothered or having his sexual boundaries pushed. But that's "slack".
Auggie and Anita flirt a bit. It goes nowhere.
Nathanial shows up. Actually, his body-scent of vanilla shows up first and then he crawls into Anita's lap, which somehow involves crawling into Auggie's lap two, and they coo for a minute over Anita being not pregnant.
Auggie, of course, has the question of the day.
“If they actually have sex on our laps, do we get to join in?” Auggie asked.
The answer is "no", and Anita drags Micah over into the kiss-and-cuddle that Auggie is not allowed to join...even though it's still basically happening right in his lap.
And then the ardeur rises. Because we haven't had sex for, like, two whole chapters. But Jean Claude puts it back and tells Auggie that his behavior was very Bad Form. He also discusses the love between him and Anita as if it were anything other than textbook Stockholm Syndrome, and I think I just threw up in my mouth just a little. Auggie then points out that Nate is a whore (his word) as is everyone who belongs to Belle Morte's line of vampires, and Jean Claude points out that Auggie has shown wonderful restraint for not fucking both Micah and Nathanial right then and there, because they were making out in his lap and he felt rather left out.
This continues until the end of the chapter, which, like the rest of this book, accomplishes absolutely nothing.