The Fictional Hockey League

Critiquing hockey romance novels, of which there are many. Overthinking it is the point.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Offside: Post 17

Chapter 22: Sisterly Love

This chapter begins with the dreaded words “Billie, can we talk?” (362) but the text doesn’t reveal who’s requesting that for another full page. I tend to equate that phrase with relationship issues and assumed it was Logan asking, but no, it was Bobbi.

But first we’re treated to a description of Billie doing laundry (specifically attempting to get the blood out of her “protective chest gear—gear that had pretty much failed the week before” (362). I wouldn’t say it so much failed as didn’t do a job it was never meant to do in the first place. Weaponized hockey, after all, is beyond the usual specifications of ordinary hockey gear.

However, Bobbi wants to clear the air with her sister and they are back to being loving and sweet in record time. Seriously, it takes maybe five lines and a hug.

The next order of business is to cover the tragedy that is their father’s decline into dementia. This takes roughly 2 minutes as Bobbi points out that Billie needs to get herself prepared for the fact that their father is going to need to move to an assisted care facility of some kind.

Then, with whiplash speed, Bobbi changes the subject to ask what’s going on between Billie and Logan. This seems like something of an inappropriate conversational change to me. Billie at first denies that anything is happening between them, but Bobbi says she’s aware that Billie has been sneaking out every night and since she asked Shane (who denied involvement) she assumes it must be Logan. This convenient logic is enough for Billie to admit the situation but she fears that if her sister found out, then others might know.

If anyone found out she was sleeping with Logan, her already shady reputation would be mud. It would be worse than mud. It would be heading into the crud that was beneath the mud kind of territory (370).

This I don’t get. The whole town already thinks she’s sleeping with the whole team. Why would it matter if it turned out that really is dating one person? I suppose it could be seen that she’s only sleeping with the team captain so that she can be on the team, but a) the text does not bring that up and b) it’s been shown multiple times that she’s the best player on the team, so it’s not like she’s gotten a spot on the roster that she doesn’t deserve (other than, according to many, her lack of penis making her undeserving.)

Then Bobbi really makes for sisterly affection by telling Billie that Logan is out of her league. She quickly back pedals and says she only meant that Logan dates around and “he’s thirty and nowhere near close to settling down” (373) whereas Billie isn’t a player.

I was under the impression that one reason to date people is to find out if you’re compatible with them and want to spend more time with them (maybe even “settle down”), so Billie’s response that “Maybe he hasn’t met the right girl yet” (373) doesn’t seem that farfetched to me. (Granted, the fact that Logan flips out because Sabrina folded his towels and said lesbian “love”, is a better reason to think that Logan’s not ready to settle down yet. But Bobbi’s evidence is just that he’s dated a lot of women, each of them for only about six months.)

Bobbi then drops what she thinks is a bombshell—she knows (thanks to Shane, from years ago), that Logan slept with Betty. When Billie isn’t surprised, Bobbi is horrified.

“So you’re perfectly fine sleeping with a guy who’s already slept with your sister? Your identical sister to be exact? Don’t you find that creepy?” (374).

So I suppose that this is why we’re meant to agree with Logan that he has an obstacle to overcome in telling Billie about his tryst with Betty. And I guess I can kind of see it? But it seems to me that personality is so much more important than looks and (should) make up so much more than mere appearance of what a person thinks of someone else. So it never would have occurred to me that this should be creepy.

“Doesn’t it make you wonder if he’s thinking of Betty when he’s with you?” (377).

Dude, he could be thinking of a Kardashian or something when he’s with Billie. All right, I guess I kind of get this… but again, not entirely, given my point above.

So I wonder, if Logan really had slept with Betty all those years ago, does that mean that his relationship with Billie could never be real? All those speshul snowflake firsts wouldn’t mean anything because he’d slept with Billie’s identical sister first? I don’t get it.

Billie does, however, surprisingly, come clean to Bobbi about the fact that actually she was the one that Logan slept with, but that he thought it was Betty. I will not go into my opinion on that again. Unsurprisingly, Bobbi is not horrified, she’s only confused as to why Billie would have done such a thing and whether Billie thinks she’s in love with Logan now. They agree that she’ll have to tell him.

But the big concern, for both sisters, remains not that Billie broke Logan’s trust as a teen, nor that she sexually assaulted him since he did not give consent to sleep with her, but that he might still be in love with Betty.

Betty must be quite the femme fatale. It almost makes me want to read Betty’s book, but not really.




    It was mostly a rant about how dammit identical twins in my (very limited) experience are just not THAT identical. If you, I don't know, INTERACT with them. (Seriously. Come on. I know the twin thing is a fun trope, but you have to make a LITTLE MORE EFFORT.)


    Also, I can't believe that this conversation about Billie's assault on Logan had NEVER come up before. Doesn't everyone have weird late-night slightly tipsy confessionals? Good grief, romance novel conventions. You can do better.

    1. yeahhhh, it happened at Christmas right after high school, I think? (Or maybe senior year and Betty left before finishing school? It's not clear.) So there'd be plenty of time between then and 'now' for this super close siblings to have mentioned this before. I mean, I'm surprised that Bobbi never brought it up with Betty after learning about it from Shane (back when it happened) and then getting a "say what?!" response.

      And yeah. Not to mention the fact that Betty was supposed to be the super glamorous one-- wouldn't she have cut her hair differently, worn different make up and styles of clothes?

  2. Grrrr. My comment disappeared too!

    We could riff all day on this identical triplets-thing. "I'm having sex with you while imagining your sister who looks exactly the same." Huh? I thought the real fantasy was having sex with twins at same time.

    Also, that Kardashians line is gold, Commish.

    1. My answer to the twins fantasy: