Lol, remember when I said I’d be updating more regularly? I lied. Oh well.
Previously, on Save the Pearls: Eden arrived at a shitty little village where indigenous Amazonian tribespeople speak Spanish. She thought about how rap music heralded humanity’s downfall, and threw a tantrum about the gross food. Her dad was condescending, and Eden sneaked away to check if by some miracle a Life-Band was smuggled into her luggage.
Eden has found spot to hunker down and hunt for her Life-Band, and then some monkeys arrive to worship her:
And how reverential they seemed with their caps of brown fur around solemn, light-colored muzzles. Now she understood why they were named for the ancient Capuchin Friars.
While the monkeys watch, Eden digs through her bag. As she digs through it, she finds nothing of interest, and the monkeys start throwing seedpods at her, for some reason? Monkeys are wacky. Eden yells at them to fuck off, but that only makes them throw more seedpods!
Eden continues to dig through the bag, and. . . she finds a Life-Band! So I guess Loyal Daisy did just happen to have a spare Life-Band lying around and was willing to betray her benign boss. That seems reasonable. Full disclosure: I don’t remember if there is further justification for this later, but if there’s not, well, that’s fucking dumb.
Also I don’t know how the Life-Band is supposed to function when there’s probably no signal, but whatever. Eden probably didn’t think about that.
Eden hears her father calling for her, and she quickly stuffs her Life-Band back back into the backpack. But before she can get a firm grip on the bag:
Then the bag flew into the air–in a monkey’s grasp. The nimble thief carried it onto a limb from which he and his conniving friends heckled her.
How delightful! What fun!
Eden also hears Bramford calling for her, and the monkeys run off with the pack. Eden tries to run after them:
She struggled to keep an eye on the red backpack, but unlike running at home on the World-Band, she actually moved forward. When she smacked into a tree limb, she fell down, more surprised than hurt.
*cue laugh track*
Eden continues chasing after the little rascal, and Bramford yells at her to stop. However, in yet another turn of wacky cartoon-style conflict:
Only the monkey thief obeyed him and came to an abrupt halt. It swung the stolen bag into the air and sent it sailing. Eden had a sick feeling, as it spiraled over a steep cliff.
The bag catches on a bush above a rushing river in a deep canyon. Eden thinks about how if she falls she’ll either fall into the river and die, or fall on some rocks and die, “or both,” but decides to try and retrieve the bag.
I honestly can’t tell if this is supposed to be high-stakes or some lighthearted fun at this point. Eden’s pretty perturbed, though, but she soon is able to reach the bag. As she tries to dislodge it from the branches, though, she falls!
Her mind drew a blank. There was no time to wish for anything. Not even death.”
What? Like, actually though, huh? Why would she wish for death as she presumably falls to her death? Wasn’t she just worried about dying?
Anyway, Bramford calls out for her, and Eden falls into the water and gets sucked under!
Then we get this poorly-thought-out simile:
Her heart hammered like an anvil.
Aren’t anvils the things that the hammer pounds on? Saying “her heart hammered like a hammer” would have made more sense, albeit sounded fucking stupid.
Just as she’s about to run out of oxygen, she feels something grab her. She thinks it’s an anaconda, but I think we all know it’s Bramford. He pulls her to the surface, and tells her to take a chill pill.
Then we get a scene as Bramford impressively navigates the river, and it’s basically the final level of Oregon Trail except with a cat-man instead of a raft.
Eventually, the river leads to a lake, and Bramford is able for swim himself and Eden to shore. Eden can barely walk, so he has to “drag” her to some shade so she won’t come down with a sunburn.
Eden realizes that all of her black body paint has been washed away, but she’s too tired to care, thank god, so we don’t have to hear a tirade about how pale and ugly she is.
The two collapse, and snuggle up. Bramford falls asleep, and Eden finds it comfortable, and we get a lot talk about their “tangled limbs” and Bramfor’ds “strong body,” you know the drill. It’s all really boring, until:
Eden brushed her cheek against Bramford’s chest and he made a soft, vibrating sound. Was he purring?
Like, he’s a cat, so I guess it makes sense? But still, it’s very un-sexy unless you’re into that. Which most people are not. Inter-species romance is kind of a niche fetish, as far as I know.
So Eden and Bramford keep cuddling, and Eden feels all oxytocin’d, and thinks about how out-of-control she feels, etc. etc:
Now, she felt captive to the strange, pleasurable sensations that stampeded like wild horses up and down her body.
>Wild horses trampling your body
Eden continues to feel content, no longer worried about her life-band, or dying, or anything at all.
Finally, the chapter ends:
Unpredictable, her father had called this beastly man. But he hadn’t warned her how unpredictable she would be.
And, like, why would her father warn her about that? This book is so odd. It’s like someone who has read and memorized a lot of common literary techniques but never really got a solid grasp of their application. Does that make sense?