Couple of housekeeping things: there's a final chapter that's another regurgitation of the whole book. I'm gonna skip it because we've see it all before. Also, there's an interlude chapter that's some sort of weird attempt at a Song of Solomon type of story that scares me in its incomprehensibility and awfulness, along with being pointless, that I'm going to skip. I'm honestly not sure what purpose it serves other than maybe as the book's sex scene, and that's too awful to contemplate. With that, let's get this show on the road. Yay!
Luna status: sleeping somewhere, but not being a helper today. None of the animals are nearby actually.
Wine status: It's early afternoon and snowing, so today's beverage is actually hot tea, with cream.
Nosy Busybody and Salesman Headship are in a restaurant. Thank GOD we aren't in that fucking park again. I had nightmares about park benches last night, but that doesn't matter because this shit is ALMOST OVER. Anyway, Salesman Headship asks what the hell he is doing here, and Nosy Busybody says he's here about the marriage of The Good Girl and Asshole Plot Device. For some reason I can't quite comprehend, Salesman Headship acts surprised. Uh, this is the least surprising surprise in the history of surprises. Just stop Vaughn, STOP. You suck as a writer.
Moving on, suddenly Salesman Headship ISN'T surprised, and asks what Nosy Busybody is "actually proposing". Oh crap, I'm about to be treated to yet another speech about how all this works, aren't I? Fuck. Nosy Busybody says that Smeghead came to him to ask him to act as an intermediary to arrange a marriage. That seemed pretty obvious to me. Maybe Salesman Headship is both an idiot and an asshole instead of just being an asshole?
Pat: Is he going to be able to afford an apartment, and insurance, and all of that?
Sakal: He won’t need to. His parents have agreed there is really no reason he should have to move out of their house, even once he brings his wife home. His father said, “I don’t have many mansions in my house, but I have an extra bedroom, anyway."
He and his father, assuming you agree, will build a bathroom onto his bedroom, which should make living a little less tight, and give the new young couple a little more privacy. And he has a job, so insurance should be OK. Although his father was talking about wanting to bring him into the family business, and said that they could provide, regardless.
I'm trying to muster up the energy to get angry, and I just can't. Sigh. I am too tired of this shit to even get mad anymore. First, without telling too much, mister destiny and I lived with his mother for a few months. It was miserable for me, because it was another woman's space, another woman's kitchen, and another woman's territory. That doesn't even include the privacy issues involved, and we DID have our own bathroom. I would never, ever, do that again, and if one of my kids decided to do this, I would counsel them to wait til they could afford their own place. Of course, I also bought them condoms and gave them a safe sex talk, so clearly our basic methods of parenting differ.
I'm hoping someone is going to talk to The Good Girl about this, but I feel like that's being optimistic to the point of foolishness. Sigh.
They have a brief conversation about how "leave and cleave" isn't biblical, and then move on to this mess:
Pat: So, does this mean I will get a bride price too? (Chuckling)
Sakal: Yes. Abe is proposing ten thousand dollars.
Pat: What? I was kidding! I don’t want to sell my daughter!
Sakal: No one wants you to. But the bride price plays a significant function; it shows her value. And the point isn’t that you get the money but that you keep it for your daughter, if Andrew should ever abandon her.
Pat: Wow. This seems like something out of an old movie. But, is he really ready? It sounds like he doesn’t really have his finances and all worked out. You know, “prepare your fields.”
Sakal: Yet another verse that everyone quotes though it has nothing to do with marriage. If you believe he needs more time to be ready to bring your daughter home, then that is fine. I won’t be happy (and Andrew definitely won’t be happy) but that is your prerogative. But you need not hinder the betrothal. Just make their betrothal contingent on his earning so much money, or passing a test or something.
But I won’t agree to any long conditions. The Jews had a tradition that the groom had one year to prepare the place he was going to bring his wife back to; in our sexually crazed society I think that is more than enough time, probably too much; for Andrew and Maydyn, in particular, the shorter the better.
No, Salesman Headship, you are fucking selling your daughter. I really, really hate this bride price shit. How the fuck does it show value to fucking BUY a woman from her father? She's not seeing any of that value, and I'd bet money that the fathers aren't actually saving this money for a potential abandonment. Nosy Busybody, fuck off with your you won't be happy, and you won't agree to long conditions shit too. Even in your worldview, you don't get to make those choices. You are a fucking bystander who needs to shut the fuck up and mind your own fucking business. ARGH. I'm just gonna ignore the pointed, if they don't marry, they might "sin" implication there, cos fuck that shit.
Pat: I don’t understand this ‘conditional betrothal’.
Sakal: Well, perhaps it is hard to understand for us poor moderns. In the past, a betrothal could happen one of two ways. Either the fathers would agree, and the betrothal was immediately valid; or the bride’s father would set some condition, like ‘take this city’, and there would be no betrothal until the city was taken.
On the other end, sometimes there was a payment that needed to be made, and until it was paid they were betrothed, but couldn’t come together. Sometimes the young man’s father would set him a task.
But in today’s society, I think we need to be very careful. We are surrounded by rampant fornication. If we betroth someone very young, then it is just as well that they have to wait to come together, and that he have some task in the mean time. But if they are older, as so many of our children are, I think we need to simply ‘let them marry’.
Remember earlier when I said I had run out of fucks to give and couldn't get angry anymore? I lied. WHAT THE ACTUAL FUCK IS THIS SHIT??????? This bit about betrothing someone "very young" scares the shit out of me. If a girl is eligible to marry when she has breasts for her husband to "delight in", how fucking young is this asshole "betrothing" kids? I both do and do not want to know the answer to this question.
Apparently Smeghead already talked to Asshole Plot Device, and Asshole agreed to marry whoever Smeghead said to. He's hoping it's The Good Girl, but doesn't know for sure. Salesman Headship has done the same with his family, and his wife and kids all agreed to marry whoever they are told as well. Part of me wonders how many of these guys are planning their escape while they are outwardly agreeing. I hope all of them, including Mrs. Salesman Headship, are!
Salesman Headship asks why Smeghead didn't come himself, and Nosy Busybody says that society isn't good at this and Smeghead was afraid that Salesman would turn Asshole down, and Smeghead didn't think that he could adequately plead Asshole's case. WHAT THE FUCK? HOW IS THIS EVEN POSSIBLE. SMEGHEAD IS ASSHOLES DAD! I hate this book, and I hate that Mr. Ohlman thinks his avatar is so much better than everyone else. Thank the powers it's nearly over.
Minor tidbit, apparently Smeghead gave Nosy Busybody the authority to go to another family if Salesman Headship turns Asshole Plot Device down. Poor Asshole Plot Device, for all my hate of him, he genuinely seems to want to be with The Good Girl and just grabbing another woman like they are interchangeable is fucking cruel.
Salesman Headship is going to go ahead and sell The Good Girl to Asshole Plot Device, so yay a happy ending! Or at least that's how we are supposed to feel (I think). They discuss how long before the actual wedding (it's up to the dads. Hers to decide when the betrothal is no longer conditional, and his to say when Asshole Plot Device can come and claim her as his bride after the betrothal is no longer conditional.
The chapter just drops off abruptly after this, and there's another one gone.