Friday, December 12, 2014

The Quest for Forgiveness: Chapter 6, Part 3

OK, so last time, Sonya and Brianna were talking about how this music company stole Brianna's music and what they're going to do about it. Hopefully I'll actually make it through the rest of the chapter today!

We start off this section of the chapter with Brianna's response to learning her music has been stolen:
“I’ve been living on the street, giving in to the whims of men, just to survive, and these people have been making millions with my music.” Her expression sobered. She brushed away a tear, recalling her devastating teenage years.  
Then as anger took hold, Brianna slammed her fist on the table. “What?” She glanced around and noticed some of the patrons watching her. She sat down, leaned across the table to get as close to Sonya as she could, and spoke softly, “What can I do about it?”
This is one of those moments where I just want to say, "Rothdiener. No. Take one second to PICTURE this interaction. It doesn't make any sense, right? No, it doesn't." I cannot even a little bit figure out how to deliver that "What?" (Today's challenge, for anyone who wishes to undertake it, is to record yourself doing this scene and make it sound plausible. Mood swings and all.)

Anyway, Sonya suggests they propose a settlement to avoid court, as long as Ethan didn't waive his rights to the songs. Brianna agrees she can research it, but asks her to keep Ethan completely uninvolved.

Brianna asks Sonya what she was even doing in the restaurant that night:
“The owner of this restaurant is my uncle. He called me a few weeks ago and told me about his new singing sensation. He said you had the beauty of a goddess and a voice of an angel. . . . Now that I am here, I know he is right. You do have the beauty of a goddess, and I have never heard anyone with such a crystal clear voice.”
This here is one of the other huge issues I have with this story overall. Brianna is such a Mary Sue that they can't seem to figure out what to focus on. Her physical beauty is nearly always tied to her talent, as if she is talented just by merit of being beautiful. It's almost a little creepy how often her beauty is mentioned by... well, everyone around her. In fact, since we haven't seen any evidence of good lyric writing thus far, I find it extremely plausible that she's just extraordinarily beautiful and people don't realize how crappy a songwriter she is.

Meanwhile, Sonya keeps prying into Brianna's back story, and it's a long, boring series of pages. Eventually, Sonya asks to see the other songs she's written.
“Follow me.” Brianna signaled for her to come. They bounded up the stairs and walked into a quaint room.
Oh, I hope I hope I hope they really did "bound" up the stairs. That's a hilarious image.

Sonya starts looking through Brianna's bajillions of notebooks of songs.
The only word she could muster was, “Wow!” She flipped over a few more pages. “These are good. Good tunes, good lyrics.”
"Nothing like I've heard from you thus far. Wow indeed!"

Sonya continues:
“If these are as good as they seem to be, I will not be looking for any more clients. You’re all I need.”

Sonya's not a music manager or anything like that. She's a lawyer. She makes money from, you know, practicing law, not someone else's musical talent. Is she anticipating that either 1) she'll make so much money defending Brianna this one time that she can retire happily? or 2) Brianna will continue to be entangled in lots of legal battles and Sonya can be her own personal lawyer forever?

(Of course, Sonya does become Brianna's manager later, according the book's first chapter, but that doesn't make any sense, and it certainly doesn't make any sense for her to imply here.)

Sonya and Brianna make plans to go running together the next morning -- or, rather, Sonya announces she's going to run with Brianna and Brianna goes on a diatribe about how awful men are, and Sonya is sad that her 17-year-old friend is so bitter. Sonya teaches Brianna how to properly shake hands and then leaves to call her lawyer friend Harry.

Harry updates Sonya on the whole Brijanna-accusing-Ethan-of-abuse situation, and then Harry asks Sonya to dinner, to which she responds:
“Harry, when you see this girl, I’m not the one you’ll be chasing anymore.”
Yeah, you probably shouldn't be making comments about a jaded, traumatized, once-prostituted 17-year-old's hotness to your coworkers in a way that kind of sounds like you're giving them permission to sexually harass her...

Sonya calls Robert, Ethan's lawyer, who tells her that the music company they sent the songs to said they were trash. Sonya updates him on the whole they've-been-stealing-her-music thing. Sonya asks for proof of copyright, but Robert derails it by trying to convince Sonya that Ethan never abused Brianna, before finally agreeing to fax over copies so they'll be there in the morning. The songs are all copyrighted in Brijanna's name, so Ethan doesn't have to be involved at all.

Then Robert calls Ethan, who's still in the rehabilitation center or wherever he ended up, and tells him what's going on, as well as this bit of information:
“Ethan, I understand she’s a beauty.”
First of all, that's completely irrelevant to the situation at hand... but, secondly, it's really creepy for him to know about because Sonya managed to go an entire conversation without mentioning how beautiful Brianna was, so he'd have no reason to know this at all. I can only assume he's been stalking her.

The chapter ends with Robert musing on how awful life is for Ethan. And on that cheerful note, we're FINALLY done with chapter six.

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