So, you’re probably thinking, wait, didn’t you already review chapter 7? The answer is no, I did not. The “what about the alt-left” chapter is actually chapter 8, and I somehow skipped over chapter 7 entirely. This is the real chapter 7.
Previously, on Save the Pearls: After being captured by two scary members of the FFP, Eden is taken to the Moon Dance, where she almost raped twice! Though she briefly escapes, she is recaptured, but just when she loses all hope of rescue, her boss Bramford appears to save her. He says some Edward Cullen/Christian Grey-type stuff, and then they leave.
So, once again, before I begin reviewing this chapter, I am going to reiterate that I skipped over it intially, so it takes place before the animorph bullshit. Eden does not yet know that Jamal is an Evil. I am sorry.
As the leave the Moon Dance, the route that Eden, Bramford, and his bodyguard Shen take leads towards the surface.
“Where are we going?” Eden said.
“Where you should have stayed,” Bramford replied.
Since Eden was on probation/suspended, she was supposed to stay at her unit/house until further notice. So you might assume that Bramford is dropping Eden off at her place. Is he? Let’s find out!
Bramford continues to lead Eden past a security checkpoint, and she’s surprised that she doesn’t get racially profiled I think? Anyway, they come upon a “humming supersonic aircraft”. A Latino (aka a Tiger’s Eye; once again, Eden is narrating in racial slurs) is the pilot. Branford orders her to get in, and she gets all freaked out as she’s never even been above-ground before. Because this is a shitty knockoff-of-a-knockoff romance novel, Bramford laughs at Eden’s stupidity and “drags her inside.” He tells her to relax, and that she’ll “enjoy it.”
The hangar opens up to the surface, and Eden screams as the aircraft takes off. To keep herself from having a panic attack, she takes a moment to describe the interior:
She tried to focus on a fixed point on the empty seat that faced her. Even here, Bramford had stamped the upholstery with his ego-driven logo. How had he obtained the leather, anyway, when the world treated its scant remaining livestock like gods?
- It’s his private jet. Of course he’s going to put his company logo on everything.
- Why is the livestock treated like gods? Is this a riff on holy cows in India? Or are animal products just reserved for the ultra-rich?
- If livestock is treated like Holy India Cows, how does Bramford have leather interiors? I don’t think this is ever addressed.
- If animal products are reserved for the ultra-rich, the interior of a private luxury aircraft seems like the least surprising place to see it.
- So this entire paragraph is either stupid or pointless.
After broaching the issue of Mysterious Leather, though, Eden gets sidetracked by the newscast that Bramford is watching. It’s about an albino kid being burned alive! If you’ll remember, albinos, or “Cottons” have been pretty much genocided/eugenics-ed out of the gene pool. We’re told that this televised scene is taking place somewhere close to the Sahara.
Eden watched as a mob tied the screaming albino to a funeral pyre. It was the only time she’d seen Coals and Pearls united in action. The Cotton’s white skin and hair stood out among his attackers; his pinkish eyes pleaded for help. Strange how she didn’t feel deep hatred for the albino, as she had been taught in school. She might even feel sorry for the poor boy.
Isn’t Eden just the best, smartest, most empathetic girl in the world? I hate the term “virtue signalling,” but the fact that Foyt thinks that having her protagonist feel sympathy for a murdered child makes her a paragon of humanity is very low-effort. D- work.
Bramford’s life-band-ring thing beeps, and the channel changes, and Eden is super surprised that he looks disturbed by what he’s just seen, too! She wonders how this could be, because she’s convinced that Bramford is a awful person who sucks.
The aircraft took a sharp turn, nearly throwing her into Bramford’s lap. He looked stunned and she wondered if he had felt the same mysterious electric charge. Was he wearing some new device that generated overwhelming magnetism?
Geddit? Because even though every thought of him she has is accompanied by vitriol and hatred, she’s super into him! She doesn’t even realize it!
Eden apologizes, and Shen the Body Guard offers her an Oxy tablet (Oxy is the evocatively-named feel-good drug the government distributes, in case you’ve forgotten), which she accepts. When Bramford offers her some water to wash it down with, she’s shocked, and says that she’s “already had her allotment tonight.” He tells her that doesn’t matter, and she takes the moment to think about how hard it is growing up poor and how privileged he is that he gets as much water as he wants. She refuses out of spite, and when she has a hard time dry-swallowing, Bramford offers water again. Once again, she refuses. Bramford tells her to suit herself, and takes a sip of water. Because of this, Eden thinks that he’s a sociopath, or something.
In case you were wondering what the purpose of this chapter is, don’t worry:
It turns out that the a fire has broken out on the mountains above the lab. Luckily, there is literal firewall that can cover the lab (I think?) so the lab isn’t in danger. Yep.
We also learn that the test subjects have gone missing! Eden begins speculating on the culprit:
She and Ashina reported on every nuance of the test subjects. Was the bitch trying to set her up? Or worse, sabotage the operation?
I’m pretty sure Ashina doesn’t even show up again in this entire book. She was only actually featured in chapters 1+2. If Foyt wants Ashina to seem like a legitimate rival/threat, shouldn’t she be on-screen more? Whatever.
After some hand wringing, Bramford tells Eden’s dad to proceed as planned, and that he’d be happy to volunteer to be experimented upon.
Eden thinks more about Jamal, and how he’s probably super busy with the missing test subjects and everything (lol). As the aircraft begins its descent, she thinks about how everything will work out.
Finally, they arrive at the lab. The Firewall closes, and that’s the chapter.