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Flowers in the Attic: "Color All Days Blue, But Save One for Black"

Maggie Mae

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Color All Days Blue, But Save One for Black

I realize that this chapter title is referring to something earlier, but I can't remember where, or why they are coloring days. I also think that things are about to get really dark. 

Cathy and Chris seem to have forgotten their worries, and are now dreaming of moving to Sarasota and joining the Circus. What child didn't dream of joining the circus? I know I for sure wanted to be a trapeze artist, just like Cathy. Or do horse tricks like on "Wild Horses Can't be Broken" staring no one I've ever heard of. For some reason I thought Christian Slater was in that film. I wonder what I'm mixing it up with. 

While Chris is being creepy and telling Cathy: 

Quote

Golly, Cathy, you'll look great in spangled pink tights.

Cory and Carrie get upset and say "NO." They don't like those plans. They don't want to fall. Was Pollyanna out yet? That kept me from climbing out of second story windows for years. 

Cathy feels old, looking at her siblings and making plans. It's October. 

One night, Chris tells Cathy "tonight." I assume it's the night of their escape, and not the night they decide to storm King's Landing, or try a new position from the Joy of Sex.  Momma has taken off, not pausing in the doorway to look at her children. They put a pillowcase inside of a pillowcase, with plans to get all of the jewelry. 

Of course, this is the night that Cory starts vomiting. He says his bones hurt. He's calling Cathy Momma. She wonders how he can throw up when there's nothing left. I too have wondered that after a night at [insert your schools party fraternity here]. (Sorry, bad taste, I know.) Chris goes to study medical journals while Cathy does all the real work of cleaning up Cory. Cory pleads "don't go and leave us behind" because obviously the incest twins didn't bother to explain to their sibs that they are coming too. 

Carrie is barely three feet tall. She asks to sleep with Cory. Cory tosses and turns and asks for Carrie all night, despite their faces being very close to each other. Cathy cries. 

Cathy thinks this is punishment for the sex. Except she doesn't say that, she says "for what we had done." and then talks about how the Grandmother had warned them up until the whipping. I don't get it. Was this written before she realized what their transgression would be? Did the Grandmother stop the lectures and warnings after the whippings? 

Chris finally decides that it must be food poisoning. He suspects the milk. Cathy says she sniffs and tastes everything before giving it to the twins or Chris. She believes her tastebuds are keener than Chris's, and that he would eat rancid butter.  She says the milk was fine. Chris than says it must be the burger. Cathy says it tastes fine and it must have tasted OK to Chris as well and gets a little dig into how he ate his, and half of Carries, and all of Cory's. Well, duh, if Cory didn't eat the burger it's not the burger. 

Chris than changes the subject to Cathy, and says she's not eating. Cathy does plies at the dresser, because of course she does. He whines that she needs to eat more. Someone needs to smack him, and I'm not a violent person. He is an annoying person, though. And now we are onto the ... (dun dun dun..) doughnuts. Cory loves the doughnuts and those are also all that Cathy wants to eat. Is arsenic addictive? My internet search is inconclusive.  I do know it takes quite a bit of arsenic to kill people, though, and it's in my well water. There's a legal limit and it's naturally occurring and everywhere.  

Cathy continues to take care of Cory, changing his PJs, getting him to drink water. When the grandmother comes in, Cathy tries to get her attention.  When the grandmother admonishes her for speaking out of turn, Cathy blows up and says that Cory needs a doctor. Grandmother leaves instead of looking at her grandchildren.  Jerk. 

Just as the older "Dollangangers" decide to unlock the door and go get Momma, she walks in. Momma and "the grandmother" hover over Cory, while Cathy wipes sweat from his brow. Cory can't breathe. Cathy is curious about how he can be sweaty and cold at the same time. I guess if they don't go to school, they don't get the flu. 

Cathy yells at the physical adults. 

Quote

Why are you standing there whispering? What choice do you have but to take Cory to a hospital, and get him the best doctor available?

In response, Corrine and her mother stare at Cathy. Corrine "siled" over to Cory, even though they are still standing over him. Seeing him makes Corrine's lips tremble, hands shake, and she's holding back tears. 

Cathy yells some more, telling Corrine to act like his mother. 

This just pisses off Corrine more, and Cathy gets slapped. Cathy slaps back. It's a slapfight! 

Sorry. 

Grandmother is watching in satisfaction. I'm sure that this is something I'll learn more about in whatever book 5 is called. If I ever get that far. 

Chris goes to hold Cathy back, before more slapping happens. Golly Gee, just throw a punch all ready! 

Cathy sees her father's face. (?) 

There is more shouting. Where are the servants? What about guests? Neighbors? (I know, there are no neighbors.) But there should be a groundskeeper and a chef and some gardeners and a stableboy, maybe a pool boy, a house cleaner, a personal assistant or two, a nurse for the dying grandfather. (I know, he's already dead.) 

After a monologue of yelling, where they all just stand and listen instead of yelling back or tackling her or just walking away, Grandmother quietly says that Cory must go to a hospital. 

***

The next night, the evilest mothers in the world come back to smuggle Cory out and to the Hospital. Carrie and Cathy want to go. They aren't allowed. 

Notable things: Momma has a glassy blank stare.  The three of them feed Mickey the Mouse, (oh, i just got that) and the mouse is sad. They wait. They try to sleep in the same bed. Cathy prays. She apologizes to God for sinning, and says there was no pleasure. 

***

The next day Cathy does housework to fill the time. Corrine comes back to tell them Cory has died of pneumonia. Carrie screams. 

There will be no funeral. 

There's nothing to snark on here. They behave in logical ways, Carrie lines up Cory's shoes. (Once she finishes screaming) Everyone, including Momma is sad. (Although she does run away as fast as possible, which I actually do understand. I want no one around me when I'm grieving.)  

She put a fake name on the tombstone, which is horrifying.

***

Carrie gets smaller and smaller every day, no one is eating. Everyone is crying. 

Chris whispers that the three of them have to run before they all die like Cory. He thinks its because they are without resistance to germs. Sure. 

Cathy doesn't want to die like a mouse in a trap. She makes plans to leave right away. Chris says no, they need more money. Chris is a dick. Granted, Cathy is already worrying about how they are no longer beautiful. She thinks they have educated themselves by reading and watching TV. She wonders why TV doesn't teach survival. Isn't Gilligan's Island on by now? 

The next part is sad. Cathy removes Cory's clothing from the suitcase and cries and cries. and reads a poem/song that Cory had written. 

***

She dreams of Cory and Christopher (her dad, not her brother-lover)

***

Her brother-lover wakes her up from that nice dream and yells at her. Ass. 

She's confused because her brother looks so much like her father. Which makes this a lot creepier. Wait, it was super weird in the beginning (I started this over a year and a half ago) with "i'm in love with my dad" vibes, right? 

She realizes that people never really die, they move on to a better place, and wait for their loved ones to join them.

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JordynDarby5

Posted

Too bad no one was punched but I do love Cathy slapping her mother back. Too bad we didn't get an all out brawl. I could see Cathy or Grandmother winning. 

I don't know how no one else in the house hears what's going on with all the screaming either. I know its a big house. But all that screaming? No one bothering to keep their voices down and no one hears anything.

I didn't get the "in love with dad vibes until I re-read the book as an adult. Christopher in love with his mother was pretty obvious. But there definitely is a case of Cathy in love with her dad. 

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HerNameIsBuffy

Posted

Gilligan's Island wasn't on to teach them for another few years.  

Do you think any of Corrine's grief was real?  and if poisoning then why the slower method to give them time to figure it out?  makes sense irl as to look like illness and hide from ME back in the day.  but they are just gonna dump bodies so why not take em out fast?

we know grandmother knows how to use a hypodermic.

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Maggie Mae

Posted

8 hours ago, HerNameIsBuffy said:

Do you think any of Corrine's grief was real? 

I do, actually. I think she runs away from problems, though, and she lies to everyone, including herself. I think being faced with Cory's death was heartbreaking for her, and a relief. 

To be honest, I'd like to read a well done version of Corrines thought process. Does she have some sort of inspirational quote she thinks of to try and forget her previous life?

8 hours ago, HerNameIsBuffy said:

and if poisoning then why the slower method to give them time to figure it out? 

I think it's so VC could make a reference to Arsenic and Old Lace. 

8 hours ago, HerNameIsBuffy said:

makes sense irl as to look like illness and hide from ME back in the day.  but they are just gonna dump bodies so why not take em out fast?

we know grandmother knows how to use a hypodermic.

See, it's these things that make me go from "VC wrote Cathy to be an unreliable narrator" to "VC is incompetent at handling this story." 

I've picked up POTW, and at first I was like "this is so much more interesting!" There is so much potential to explore the deep psychological issues these kids will have. I'm about a quarter of the way through it and it is just too much. Too much telling, jumping through the plot like it has a place to be, too much "love." 

 

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HerNameIsBuffy

Posted

32 minutes ago, Maggie Mae said:

I do, actually. I think she runs away from problems, though, and she lies to everyone, including herself. I think being faced with Cory's death was heartbreaking for her, and a relief. 

To be honest, I'd like to read a well done version of Corrines thought process. Does she have some sort of inspirational quote she thinks of to try and forget her previous life?

I think it's so VC could make a reference to Arsenic and Old Lace. 

See, it's these things that make me go from "VC wrote Cathy to be an unreliable narrator" to "VC is incompetent at handling this story." 

I've picked up POTW, and at first I was like "this is so much more interesting!" There is so much potential to explore the deep psychological issues these kids will have. I'm about a quarter of the way through it and it is just too much. Too much telling, jumping through the plot like it has a place to be, too much "love." 

 

I agree with the running away from her problems and lying even to herself...but I don’t feel any grief from her.  I don’t believe the kids are anything more than a terrible inconvenience and her fear and regret at Cory dying was due to crossing the murder line and having three witnesses staring at her.  Fear that we may get found out, however briefly until she convinces herself it’s fine again.

i would love to read an in-depth character analysis of her.  I have questions.

did she love Chris sr. Or was it her pathology that made him the only man for her because he was family, not in spite of that fact.  Was it him she wanted or to get away in a way that would hurt her parents the most?

did her fathers abuse include incest that was more than the emotional we’ve seen? Could be an explaination of why she’d want to hurt him so badly by rejecting him for his younger, handsome brother?

did she ever love the kids in her previous life?  Sure we know she dolled up for her husband and the elder C and C recount some warm moments and a pleasant childhood on the surface, but maternal bonds don’t switch off like hers did.  

We’re the kids something she had for Chris St and as long as life was good and she was protected from stress was able to play her role well - but she never really bonded with them herself.

even Elizabeth Bathory could be pleasant when she needed to be.

I think she wanted rid of the kids from the start, that feeling growing the longer they were kept locked up.  I do think she wished they were gone but didn’t have the   stomach to do it herself so she let her mother and John Amos do the dirty work.

iow I don’t think she was upset so much that Cory was sick, I think she was upset that Cory was the only one that sick.

if she ever felt anything for Chris Sr I think the guilt of what she was doing to his children would prick at her,  but not that she was doing it to her own if that makes sense.  Like a true narcissist those kids existed only in relation to her not as individuals.

Yep I need in depth character analysis for not just her but several characters.  I’ve got questions.

 

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Maggie Mae

Posted

1 hour ago, HerNameIsBuffy said:

I agree with the running away from her problems and lying even to herself...but I don’t feel any grief from her.  I don’t believe the kids are anything more than a terrible inconvenience and her fear and regret at Cory dying was due to crossing the murder line and having three witnesses staring at her.  Fear that we may get found out, however briefly until she convinces herself it’s fine again.

I actually think she had some sort of delusion that she could just keep them in the attic, like dolls, and pull them out and look at them once in a while when feeling nostalgic. Unfortunately, kids grow up, and Cathy got bitchy. She also moved on with her life. 

 

1 hour ago, HerNameIsBuffy said:

did her fathers abuse include incest that was more than the emotional we’ve seen? Could be an explaination of why she’d want to hurt him so badly by rejecting him for his younger, handsome brother?

Oh, that's dark.

1 hour ago, HerNameIsBuffy said:

did she ever love the kids in her previous life?  Sure we know she dolled up for her husband and the elder C and C recount some warm moments and a pleasant childhood on the surface, but maternal bonds don’t switch off like hers did.  

I think she "loved" them in a superficial way. Cathy is also obsessed with appearance, too. 

 

1 hour ago, HerNameIsBuffy said:

We’re the kids something she had for Chris St and as long as life was good and she was protected from stress was able to play her role well - but she never really bonded with them herself.

I think she only liked them because she could show them off. If she had a child that wasn't "beautiful" that kid would have been hidden away. 

1 hour ago, HerNameIsBuffy said:

if she ever felt anything for Chris Sr I think the guilt of what she was doing to his children would prick at her,  but not that she was doing it to her own if that makes sense.  Like a true narcissist those kids existed only in relation to her not as individuals.

Yep I need in depth character analysis for not just her but several characters.  I’ve got questions.

So many questions. Like in Petals, what the hell is up with Paul? Hey, boss, found these kids on a bus, we're keeping them, right? And then no one questions that he's leering at this teenage girl, after sending her siblings off to private schools? Gross. 

What is Cathy good at, besides dancing? Why does Chris like his conceited sister at all? How much are the gardeners paid to keep their mouth shut? Does Bart suspect anything? How do you enforce the 'no children' clause in the will? How bad of a lawyer is he? What does he see in Corrine? What happened to VC to make her write this story? 

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FloraDoraDolly

Posted

I think in the beginning, Corrine genuinely believed the kids would only be in the attic for a few days and that she would win back her father's affection/money. But in time, she found herself in one of those situations where a person commits new crimes (and worse ones) to cover up the first ones and the whole situation spiraled out of control. I also see her as a selfish, vain, superficial person who possesses little empathy and can therefore easily convinces herself that the kids are "better off" in the attic. But then the old man plays the trump (pun sort-of intended) card with his will and Corrine feels she "has no choice" but to get rid of the kids.

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JordynDarby5

Posted

5 hours ago, HerNameIsBuffy said:

I agree with the running away from her problems and lying even to herself...but I don’t feel any grief from her.  I don’t believe the kids are anything more than a terrible inconvenience and her fear and regret at Cory dying was due to crossing the murder line and having three witnesses staring at her.  Fear that we may get found out, however briefly until she convinces herself it’s fine again.

i would love to read an in-depth character analysis of her.  I have questions.

did she love Chris sr. Or was it her pathology that made him the only man for her because he was family, not in spite of that fact.  Was it him she wanted or to get away in a way that would hurt her parents the most?

did her fathers abuse include incest that was more than the emotional we’ve seen? Could be an explaination of why she’d want to hurt him so badly by rejecting him for his younger, handsome brother?

did she ever love the kids in her previous life?  Sure we know she dolled up for her husband and the elder C and C recount some warm moments and a pleasant childhood on the surface, but maternal bonds don’t switch off like hers did.  

We’re the kids something she had for Chris St and as long as life was good and she was protected from stress was able to play her role well - but she never really bonded with them herself.

even Elizabeth Bathory could be pleasant when she needed to be.

I think she wanted rid of the kids from the start, that feeling growing the longer they were kept locked up.  I do think she wished they were gone but didn’t have the   stomach to do it herself so she let her mother and John Amos do the dirty work.

iow I don’t think she was upset so much that Cory was sick, I think she was upset that Cory was the only one that sick.

if she ever felt anything for Chris Sr I think the guilt of what she was doing to his children would prick at her,  but not that she was doing it to her own if that makes sense.  Like a true narcissist those kids existed only in relation to her not as individuals.

Yep I need in depth character analysis for not just her but several characters.  I’ve got questions.

 

Those are good questions.

3 hours ago, Maggie Mae said:

I actually think she had some sort of delusion that she could just keep them in the attic, like dolls, and pull them out and look at them once in a while when feeling nostalgic. Unfortunately, kids grow up, and Cathy got bitchy. She also moved on with her life. 

 

Oh, that's dark.

I think she "loved" them in a superficial way. Cathy is also obsessed with appearance, too. 

 

I think she only liked them because she could show them off. If she had a child that wasn't "beautiful" that kid would have been hidden away. 

So many questions. Like in Petals, what the hell is up with Paul? Hey, boss, found these kids on a bus, we're keeping them, right? And then no one questions that he's leering at this teenage girl, after sending her siblings off to private schools? Gross. 

What is Cathy good at, besides dancing? Why does Chris like his conceited sister at all? How much are the gardeners paid to keep their mouth shut? Does Bart suspect anything? How do you enforce the 'no children' clause in the will? How bad of a lawyer is he? What does he see in Corrine? What happened to VC to make her write this story? 

Interesting answers. I agree Corrine loved them superficial it also explains why Christopher was her favorite. He was the only one who always believed her and never questioned her. 

I've always wondered whether or not there was any incest between Corrine and her father. They have a very creepy relationship and in the last book Malcolm was clearly obsessed with his daughter. Always buying her stuff and wanting to be with her and thought she'd never leave. I know he flipped out at Corrine and Christopher but I think he would have had that reaction no matter who she married. He never want to her marry someone else and leave him. He did have it added into his will about Corrine never having children with her first or second husband. Except for the whipping Corrine is never again shown to really have to do anything for her father. She comes and goes, drops a crap load of money. Corrine never seemed to find their relationship odd or getting wrong with getting involved with her half-uncle. She also seemed to truly expect her parents to be happy for her and her half-uncle and was shocked that they weren't. But there's also how she treats Christopher and doesn't find it odd that her son is in love with her. You'd think she'd recognize it and try to steer her son away from her if she realized how messed up her relationship with her father was. In the beginning of the book she calms an angry Christopher by holding him against her breasts. Did Malcolm just spoiler her rotten or was their incest? Or did she learn early on how to manipulate him?  

I also wondered about Christopher Senior he was raised away from Foxworth Hall and who knows how well but he has no problem dating his niece, marrying her and having kids. Who does that? Why does he do that? Why doesn't he find that weird? He also was willing to go into hock in other to keep Corrine happy.  

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