So like the last few chapters which had Paolini openers and closers, this chapter opens with Bella waking up. Shock. And since she’s Bella, she immediately finds stuff to bitch about: The wall beside me was covered in long vertical blinds; over my head, the glaring lights blinded me. I was propped up on a hard, uneven bed — a bed with rails. The pillows were flat and lumpy. There was an annoying beeping sound somewhere close by. I hoped that meant I was still alive. Death shouldn’t be this uncomfortable.
Cherubs flew by to sprinkle me with rose petals. The sound of heralds trumpeting the news of my awakening sounded, and God himself wept tears of joy. It was annoying.
So despite her insistence that she can “sense” Edward’s proximity on a cellular level, she doesn’t notice he’s there until he keeps her from ripping some sensor or something off her face.
“Edward?” I turned my head slightly, and his exquisite face was just inches from mine, his chin resting on the edge of my pillow.
… so he’s sitting on the floor?
I realized again that I was alive, this time with gratitude and elation.
So she wasn’t grateful to be alive until she noticed Miss Sparkles was present? What a bitch. Then again, this IS Bella Swan – if anyone can whine and moan about LIFE ITSELF, it’s her.
“Oh, Edward, I’m so sorry!”
“Since I’m implicitly your property due to being a woman, I was SO wrong to try to sacrifice myself!”
Bawla says she was stupid (duh!) and Edward is emo. Oh, and Bella’s mom is back in Phoenix, so she’s unsurprisingly hanging out at the hospital due to… her only child almost being beaten to death. Allegedly.
“But what did you tell her?” I panicked. I had no interest in being soothed. My mom was here and I was recovering from a vampire attack.
Yes, because when I think about multiple broken bones and lacerations, I think “vampire attack”! Clearly her mom can come to no other conclusion!
“Why did you tell her I’m here?”
I actually didn’t read this the way the author intended. I think she meant “What was the EXCUSE you told her?” and not “Why the fuck did you tell my mom, whom I have contempt for?” Ah, the stench of bad writing.
“You fell down two flights of stairs and through a window.” He paused. “You have to admit, it could happen.”
HAHA, it’s funny because she’s ridiculously and unrealistically clumsy, and for some reason Smeyer keeps shoving it right up our noses. Because this is endearing. Really. LOVE BELLA FOR HER CLUMSINESS, DAMMIT!
So after a laundry list of Bella’s various broken bones (including “bruises covering every inch of your skin” – not likely, since people in far worse situations don’t have bruises EVERYWHERE), Edward bitches about how Bella’s blood transfusions made her “smell all wrong for a while.” Awww, was SparklyTwat deprived of the joy of sniffing her like a potpourri?
“That must have been a nice change for you.”
“No, I like how you smell.”
“I have become resigned to the fact that your smell is a clumsy metaphor for sexual attraction WHICH IS EVIL, and that bloodsucking is a metaphor for sex. But since we didn’t go all the way and I just vacuumed venom out of your entire bloodstream, this was just the equivalent of Frenching.”
“How did you do it?” I asked quietly. He knew what I meant at once.
“I’m not sure.” He looked away from my wondering eyes,
“Normally, I only have that reaction when I’m, uh, wrestling with Emmett.” Seriously, was anyone else immature enough to giggle when they read this?
He sighed without returning my gaze. “It was impossible… to stop,” he whispered. “Impossible. But I did.” He looked up finally, with half a smile. “I must love you.”
“I managed to not kill/metaphorically-rape you. IT MUST BE LOVE!”
Also, does that mean he wouldn’t manage to stop killing ANYONE else with yummy blood in the human race? I wonder how many babies Eddie’s slaughtered in his time, because he didn’t love them.
“Don’t I taste as good as I smell?” I smiled in response. That hurt my face.
“Even better — better than I’d imagined.”
“And I didn’t even have time to wax beforehand!”
Seriously, she must be doing this to us on PURPOSE. It’s not like the bloodsucking/sex connection is subtle in this book… I mean, please at least PRETEND to be subtle.
He raised his eyes to the ceiling. “Of all the things to apologize for.”
“What should I apologize for?”
“For very nearly taking yourself away from me forever.”
“You should apologize to me for almost depriving me of what belongs to me! I mean, it’s not like what you do with your life is YOUR decision!”
“I know why you did it.” His voice was comforting. “It was still irrational, of course. You should have waited for me, you should have told me.”
“You wouldn’t have let me go.”
“No,” he agreed in a grim tone, “I wouldn’t.”
“I would totally have let your mother die a horrible slow gruesome death, and I would have been totally okay with that because I don’t wanna screw your mom. See why you should totally have waited for me and told me?”
“Oh Edward, you’re so rich and sparkly! Ravish me in my hospital bed!”
So Bella FINALLY remembers that oh yeah, there was a horribly undeveloped villain that was never dealt with onscreen. And yes, Edward just mentions that Jasper and Emmett “took care of him.” That’s all we get, folks. We don’t get a fight scene, we don’t get any glimpses of what happened… just… “took care of him.” You do not get to kill villains off that way! We demand to at least see what happens.
That would be like if we read/watched Lord of the Rings movies right to the end… and Frodo passed out on the way to Mount Doom, and woke up days later to find that Sam dropped the Ring in the magma, Sauron exploded, the ground collapsed under the orcs, the eagles rescued everybody…. and we don’t get to SEE it because our protagonist was passed out at the time!
Hold on…. hold on, I’m getting a horrible sense of deja vu! I’m having Anita Blake flashbacks! Let’s see, our bitchy Sue gets injured and wakes up in a hospital, where her sex slaves boyfriend explain all the interesting stuff that happened while we weren’t looking, and which we’ll never see because the Sue will spend the next few chapters doing jackshit.
There was a fierce note of regret in his voice.
“Your mom can die for all I care, but it makes me sad that the psychopathic murderer was killed. Especially since I was too much of a wuss to actually kill him myself.”
This confused me.
I suspect rulers confuse Bella.
“I didn’t see Emmett and Jasper there.”
“They had to leave the room… there was a lot of blood.”
“Carlisle was kind of pissed when they showed up with napkins and spoons.”
“But you stayed.”
“Yes, I stayed.”
“Jasper left me his spoon.”
Actually, speaking of which, what happened to all the blood on the floor? I mean, allegedly Eddie can barely control himself when the blood is actually in Bawla’s BODY. Did he lick all her spilled blood off the floor? Because that is a FRIGGIN’ HILARIOUS IDEA.
“And Alice, and Carlisle…” I said in wonder.
“They love you, too, you know.”
“They’ve met you a few times, hardly even conversed with you and know nothing about you, but for some inexplicable reason they’ve decided they love you. It’s the power of SUE!”
“Did Alice see the tape?” I asked anxiously.
“Yes.” A new sound darkened his voice, a tone of sheer hatred.
“I hate tapes! I HATE TAPES! I HATE ‘EM GAAAAAAAAAA…!”
“She was always in the dark, that’s why she didn’t remember.”
“I know. She understands now.” His voice was even, but his face was black with fury.
Well, that makes three of you. I mean, what does that mean? If people are turned into vampires after a long period in a dark room… they have total amnesia? I don’t understand why that would happen, except for plot convenience. I mean, do vampire brains require a certain amount of Vitamin D to keep memories? And why would BELLA know this particular piece of information?
Seriously, this entire bit of dialogue is either totally redundant since HELLO the last two chapters already TOLD us that Alice remembered absolutely nothing about Generic Vampire Villain, or it has Bella magically knowing some piece of information that makes no sense. Either way, BAD WRITER, SMEYER! BAD, BAD, BAD!
Then Bella notices that she has an IV needle in her hand, and she whines about it and tries not to pass out.
“Afraid of a needle,” he muttered to himself under his breath, shaking his head. “Oh, a sadistic vampire, intent on torturing her to death, sure, no problem, she runs off to meet him. An IV, on the other hand…”
Oh, how charmingly contradictory Bawla is! Be charmed by how contradictory she is! She’s scared of one thing, but not another! BE CHARMED, DAMN YOU. SHE’S A LIKABLE CHARACTER!
So we get some babble about why he’s there and what his lame excuse is. No, we don’t need to know this because HOLY SHIT this entire chapter is boring. It’s just three people sitting in a room and TALKING. Just talking! Not even interesting talking! They’re basically filling in the holes that Smeyer is too lazy to fill in, because she doesn’t want to write from any perspective but Bella’s! Seriously, if she had written even a FEW scenes from someone else’s perspective, we wouldn’t need this shit.
If Bella pulls the “my imaginary penis is bigger than your real one!” shtick and insists that all the Cullens climb into bed with her, I’ll know that this book is actually by Laurell K Hamilton.
“Oh,” he said, and his forehead smoothed back into marble.
You know, it occurs to me that I’ve been treating the descriptions of him as “marble” as being purely metaphorical. But… really, Smeyer isn’t good enough to include metaphors that don’t whack you in the head. She means he really IS marble…. and I don’t know how the hell he’s moving, since marble isn’t known for being flexible.
“I came to Phoenix to talk some sense into you, to convince you to come back to Forks.” His wide eyes were so earnest and sincere, I almost believed him myself.
“I totally did NOT try to kidnap you ‘for your own good’ after I put you in danger in the first place. I did not do that, and I told your mom so. I also told her that I would totally not have just stood by and twiddled my thumbs while an evil vampire slowly chewed out her throat, ripped off her head and mailed it to her daughter. I told her that.”
“You agreed to see me, and you drove out to the hotel where I was staying with Carlisle and Alice — of course I was here with parental supervision,” he inserted virtuously,
Yes, because he’s the perfect Mormon stalker boy and would NEVER go to another town to see a girl without a chaperone. If there weren’t, they might engage in some kissing!
Is there even one more way Smeyer can wussify and blandize her vampires even further?
“but you tripped on the stairs on the way to my room and… well, you know the rest. You don’t need to remember any details, though; you have a good excuse to be a little muddled about the finer points.”
Wow, this totally would not stand up if her mom did any investigation, since she’d find out that Edward didn’t get a hotel room, and Bella’s room was rented by Edward’s “siblings” since Bella was conveniently passed out when they checked in.
Oh, and it turns out that they even faked the evidence so it looks like Bawla fell down the stairs.
“Alice had a little bit too much fun fabricating evidence. It’s all been taken care of very convincingly — you could probably sue the hotel if you wanted to.”
No, not really.
- I’m pretty sure most hotels have some kind of surveillance equipment. Then again, that seems to be too advanced for Smeyer and her characters, who think that unmanned traffic radar doesn’t exist.
- Wouldn’t you expect there to be… well, blood and witnesses if someone went hurtling out a hotel window in the middle of the day? Hotels tend to have a lot of people hanging around them, and I’m pretty sure if someone splatted on the sidewalk and lay there bleeding, SOMEBODY would notice. If nothing else, they would notice the large puddles of blood and the sound of an ambulance.
- No, she could not sue the hotel. Here’s why: they didn’t come up with their story until LONG AFTER Bella was injured. Here’s the series of events:
- Bella gets hurt being an idiot.
- Carlisle and Co. come to help.
- Presumably they get her to a hospital.
- They get a hotel room.
- Alice rushes out to break windows and falsify evidence, which presumably the hotel would notice.
- So the timeline doesn’t add up. It would be easy for the hotel to find out when Bella was admitted, and to notice that OH YEAH she was admitted BEFORE they got a hotel room and BEFORE the window was broken, meaning that someone else broke the window. Also, I’m pretty sure any good lawyer could debunk the idea that Bella fell through that window because there’s NO BLOOD THERE.
Basically the only way this works is is the Cullens decided to just leave Bella on the ballet studio floor and not get her medical attention for an hour or so, because Alice had to run across town to check into a hotel, break a window and splatter her blood on it. It also means that they couldn’t call an ambulance, and would just have to bundle a horribly injured person into their car or whatever.
So because Smeyer has gone a whole half-chapter without making us diabetic with her schmaltzy romance, Edward touches Bella’s cheek and her heart starts going insane. I am being literal here: she develops a massive and potentially fatal heart arrhythmia because HE TOUCHED HER. Ah, BiologyFail, thou art a constant in these shitty-ass books.
I mean, how can someone think that cardiac arrhythmia is no big deal? The stuff she describes is not the minor, harmless type of arrhythmia which is just a missing beat or a super-strong one then and again – the kind of stuff she describes is potentially fatal.
And because life-threatening cardiac problems aren’t a big deal, Edward transforms into Doucheman and starts deliberately messing with her cardiac works.
He leaned in slowly; the beeping noise accelerated wildly before his lips even touched me. But when they did, though with the most gentle of pressure, the beeping stopped altogether.
… WHAT? WHAT? WHAAAAAAAATTTTTT?!?!?!?!?! How does that happen? So what happens if they actually make out for real – she DIES because her heart won’t beat if he’s close enough?
You know, I don’t work in a hospital or anything, but I’m pretty sure those heart monitors set off some kind of alarm in the hospital so they can rush in and try to save anybody whose heart DOES stop. You know, as in they’re dying. Otherwise you’d have people dying all the time and just LYING there with nobody bothering to check on them.
“It seems that I’m going to have to be even more careful with you than usual.” He frowned.
“You’re apparently so stupid that your body takes any excuse to try to DIE.”
As if the stupid weren’t intense enough, Bella then whines that she’s not done making out with SparkleEmoBoy, even though her HEART STOPPED last time she did. I mean, is she trying to die? Is this deliberate? Is Smeyers seriously suggesting that snogging your boyfriend is worth DYING over?
He grinned, and bent to press his lips lightly to mine. The monitor went wild.
There was a tiny mariachi band inside it, and the tiny audience just loved it.
But then Bella’s mom is approaching, so Edward pretends to be… sleeping? I dunno. Anyway, Bella’s mom comes in, and Bella makes a huge deal of how happy she is to see her, even though Bella’s attitude toward her during the ENTIRE BOOK was that of contempt and long-suffering tolerance.
So blah blah blah, they have Hallmark movie moments together and it’s all so heartwarming.
She took in Edward’s still form on the recliner, and tiptoed to my bedside.
“He never leaves, does he?” she mumbled to herself.
“Nope, Mom! He even creeps into my room and watches me sleep when I’m at home! Isn’t that romantic?”
“… haha, just kidding! He just masturbates into my underwear drawer!”
“You’re lucky Dr. Cullen was there. He’s such a nice man… very young, though. And he looks more like a model than a doctor…”
Has Smeyer mentioned how attractive the Cullens are? And how they’re all super-young and super-hot? Because there’s no such thing as an old or ugly vampire! Has Smeyer mentioned that?
“And Edward’s sister Alice. She’s a lovely girl.”
“She is,” I agreed wholeheartedly.
“If Edward ever dumps me, I’ll elope with Alice instead!”
She glanced over her shoulder at Edward, lying with his eyes closed in the chair. “You didn’t tell me you had such good friends in Forks.”
“And you didn’t mention how hot they are. What strong arms they have. What chiseled jaws they have. Hmmm, I wonder if he likes older women.”
And then Bella’s mom mentions that HOORAY her stepfather got signed to some team in Florida. Yeah, I don’t care either – I don’t think Phil has even been in this book, so I have the same emotional attachment to him that I do to Bawla’s toenail clippers. I suspect Bella feels the same.
“Yes! How did you guess! The Suns, can you believe it?”
Ah, it’s supposed to be funny, because Bella’s spent the whole book bitching about the lack of sun in Forks. Except it’s not funny.
“And you’ll like Jacksonville so much,” she gushed while I stared at her vacantly.
So… her usual expression.
“I was a little bit worried when Phil started talking about Akron, what with the snow and everything,”
“It was such a relief. I would have had to divorce him if his job had taken him anywhere COLD! Any divorce judge would totally be on my side and given me all his stuff.”
“because you know how I hate the cold”
Yes, we know. You did, after all, dump your first husband and steal your kid away from him because you couldn’t bother to ask him to MOVE.
So Bella’s mom raves about how wonderful it is that they’re gonna live in Florida, where it’s wam and sunny and they have a beach house even though allegedly they don’t have much money. I guess they’ll dip into Phil’s trust fund, since Bella had to inherit her golddigging talents from SOMEONE. Oh, and Bella gets her own bathroom too! See, this is wonderful continuity because she bitched about having to share a bathroom earlier in the book! IT’S GOOD WRITING, DAMMIT! BE IMPRESSED!
“We found the cutest house, yellow, with white trim, and a porch just like in an old movie,”
“A porch just like in an old movie”? So, they have a porch all in black-and-white, with some Southern belle having a dramatic moment with a guy?
I think she means a wraparound porch… but I guess Smeyers is too dumb or too sheltered to know what those porches are called or that they are still fairly common today. You know, the porches that MANY HOUSES HAVE in the South?
But wait! Bella doesn’t wanna go to Jacksonville! What a shocking plot twist! Bella being given an option to go to Florida, and REJECTING IT. THIS WRITING IS SO SMART!
“Wait, Mom!” I interrupted. Edward still had his eyes closed, but he looked too tense to pass as asleep. “What are you talking about? I’m not going to Florida. I live in Forks.”
“Moooooommmm, you’re like, SO lame. Don’t you, like, know that I’m totally over warmth and sunlight? I, like, like cold clammy humidity now! You should like totally know that even though I’ve barely communicated with you in WEEKS and have totally done a 180 in that time! OMG keep up, Maaaaaawwwwwm!”
“But you don’t have to anymore, silly,” she laughed. “Phil will be able to be around so much more now… we’ve talked about it a lot, and what I’m going to do is trade off on the away games, half the time with you, half the time with him.”
Yes, because you switch your seventeen-year-old child’s school and living arrangements for just a couple weeks. Does this seem off to anyone else?
Hell, I don’t even know why Smeyer doesn’t just insist that Bawla is homeschooled. Of course, she would totally educate and teach herself in all things, since she’s smarter and more mature than any of the adults around her. Oh, how silly of me – it’s so she can meet Edward! Because nobody could logically meet a vampire except in a high school! How silly of me!
“Mom.” I hesitated, wondering how best to be diplomatic about this. “I want to live in Forks. I’m already settled in at school, and I have a couple of girlfriends” — she glanced toward Edward again when I reminded her of friends, so I tried another direction —
Hello, most priceless moment in this entire shitty book! I swear, I could not make up that moment if I stayed up all night thinking about it! Bella mentioned having a couple of girlfriends, and HER MOM IMMEDIATELY LOOKS AT EDWARD! “Well, obviously, sweetie. One of your girlfriends came to get you… oh wait, that’s a boy? Awkward!”
“and Charlie needs me. He’s just all alone up there, and he can’t cook at all.”
Not that either of you gave a shit about him being alone in the past decade.
Also, apparently “can’t cook at all” = “cooked for himself in all the time you selfish bitches were off living off his alimony money.”
“You want to stay in Forks?” she asked, bewildered. The idea was inconceivable to her.
There was a loud snap and the smell of burning as her tiny brain short-circuited.
And then her eyes flickered back toward Edward. “Why?”
“I told you — school, Charlie — ouch!” I’d shrugged. Not a good idea.
Yes, because she cares so much about Charlie and loves school SO much, with all those friends of hers like…. uhhhhh….. ummmm… the guys she wouldn’t go out with…. and those girls she sneers at…. and stuff.
But it turns out that Bella’s mom is stupid in the same way Charlie is a gourmet bad cook – basically she totally figures out Bella’s lies and motivations in just a minute. Of course, she doesn’t take Bawla to task for lying to her mother, because Bella is so mature and smart and she reads Jane Austen yada yada yada.
“Is it this boy?” she whispered.
“He is a boy, right? Because you can’t tell just by looking. I mean, he wears more foundation and lipstick than I do.”
“He’s part of it,” I admitted. No need to confess how big a part.
Like 110%, and her father, “friends” and schoolwork takes up no part whatsoever in her decision.
So it turns out Bawla’s mom has already talked to Edward, and she’s come to the most headslappingly idiotically obvious conclusion in history:
“I think that boy is in love with you,” she accused, keeping her voice low.
“He told me all about his fantasies about keeping you in a dungeon so you’d be safe from the evil vampires and the runaway vans. I’ve already told the hospital staff to put him in a straitjacket.”
So of course, Bawla’s mom asks how Bawla feels about Edward. And of course, Bella has to turn it into a bitchy moment: I sighed, looking away. As much as I loved my mom, this was not a conversation I wanted to have with her.
… WHY? Is it the simple fact that Bella seems pretty contemptuous of her mom, and thus wouldn’t want to share any of her ACTUAL sociopathic feelings with her? Does she not wanna tell her because she’s just so used to lying? WHY DOESN’T SMEYER EVER EXPLAIN ANYTHING?
“I’m pretty crazy about him.” There — that sounded like something a teenager with her first boyfriend might say.
- See, this is one of the hugest problems with Bella’s repellent character: she’s not supposed to be a teenager. She’s a thirtysomething woman in a teenager’s body, because clearly Smeyer isn’t a good enough writer to write any character who doesn’t think EXACTLY like her.
- No wonder her sci-fi novel has a brain-invading parasite. That’s what Bella’s characterization sounds like – a bitter, selfish grown woman who’s somehow been inserted into a teenage body, and is trying to fool everyone into buying it.
- It’s especially stupid, because what teenager THINKS of themselves as not being a teenager, and pretends to be a normal immature inexperienced teenager just to FOOL people?
- The one thing about this passage that rings true is… well, Bella is a stupid teenager with a hormonal crush which she believes is true love, pretending she’s a stupid teenager with a hormonal crush that she knows is a hormonal crush. That seems pretty realistic…
- … but again, SMEYER INTENDS FOR THIS TO NOT BE A HORMONAL CRUSH MISTAKEN FOR LOVE! She thinks that this is a portrait of “wuv troo wuv.”
- And no, teens don’t use words like “pretty crazy about him.” Maybe that’s what they said when Smeyer was a kid… in her oppressively G-rated upbringing…. but not now.
For some reason, Bella’s mother starts freaking out because Bella is so “young.” Yes, at seventeen she’s way too young to have dated a guy for a WHOLE WEEK, half of which she’s been unconscious. And she DEFINITELY shouldn’t form an emotional attachment!
“Don’t tie yourself down, Bella! You shouldn’t have week-long relationships until you’re really ready to commit and settle down! You should stay emotionally stunted and lonely until you’re ready to get married! DON’T WASTE YOUR LIFE, BELLA!”
Her voice was unsure; as far as I could remember, this was the first time since I was eight that she’d come close to trying to sound like a parental authority. I recognized the reasonable-but-firm tone of voice from talks I’d had with her about men.
I’m sorry, but this “Bella’s had to be a mom to her mother” thing really pisses me off. Yes, there are situations in life where the kid ends up having to be the “parent” figure… but this does not mean that the kids are wise beyond their years. It means that the parents are horrible, addicted, irresponsible or in some way damaged. And in turn, having to play “mommy/daddy” to mommy/daddy damages the kids.
From what little we’ve seen of Bella’s mother, she is not one of those damaged people. Selfish and dumb, yes. But she does seem to be a loving mother and wife (as long as you don’t force her to go anywhere cold, because then she’ll steal shared children and divorce you), she clearly tries to care for her daughter, she has some measure of responsibility, and obviously she’s not passing out drunk in the garage with a glue stick stuck up one nostril and cocaine residue on the other nostril. So no, there is no reason for Bawla to be a “mom to her mom,” except her own pretentious belief that she knows best.
And since her mom clearly loves Bella…. why the fuck would she stop trying to be an authority figure to her? Is Bella just so dull that her mom doesn’t bother bossing her around, because she dresses, acts and thinks like a middle-aged frump? Why would ANYONE not be an authority figure to an EIGHT-YEAR-OLD?!
The most ridiculous part of this? The idea that Bella, who by her own admission has never dated before THIS WEEK, was having talks about men with her mother… with herself as the expert voice of wisdom! How the fuck did those talks go?!
“Mom, I’ve been meaning to have this talk with you for a long time. It’s the talk about where babies come from.”
“Honey, I know how that happens.”
“Shush, mom. You’re a total flake and I’m wise beyond my years, so I obviously know more about men than you. See, when the man and woman love each other very much-”
“Sweetie, I’ve been married already.”
“-the man and woman spend some very special private time together-”
“And obviously YOU’RE here.”
“-and they put their naughty parts that I refuse to admit exists together-”
“I mean, you’ve never even been on a date, darling. Your only contact with men is when you say ‘thanks, now go away’ to the mailman.”
“-and poof, they make a baby that sucks the life out of the mother and has to be chewed out of her uterus. Any questions?”
“Yes, sweetie. When did you become such a pretentious bitch?”
But of course, we all know the answer to why Bella’s parents are not treated as parents: because Smeyer wants to fantasize about being a hot single teenager, but without any annoying restrictions on anything she wants to do. With that in mind, it’s kind of hilarious that a woman in her late thirties… who has the maturity of a 13-year-old twit… is insisting that her teenage Sue has the maturity of a fiftysomething.
“I know that, Mom. Don’t worry about it. It’s just a crush,” I soothed her.
And see, in a book written by a SMART writer, that would immediately alert ANY adult to the fact that Bella thinks it’s troo luv and wants to live in eternal sparkly vampirehood with her boyfriend. Here’s the thing: ALL teenagers think their first crushes are true love. They don’t recognize crushes for what they are, because no matter how responsible and mature they are, they have not learned enough to recognize love when they experience it. That is part of what adolescence is about, people! It’s about mistaking crushes for the real thing, not saying “It’s just a crush.”
If they say it’s “just a crush,” they are FUCKING WITH YOU. They are LYING TO YOU. It’s particularly silly with Bella – if you’ve never dated anyone and never even LUSTED after anyone, you cannot recognize the difference between a crush and true love. You have NO EXPERIENCE WHATSOEVER.
And again, what really slays me is that Smeyer has basically written her characters’ “troo luv” as a hormonal crush based on Edward’s desire to guzzle Bawla’s blood, and Bawla’s desire to bone Edward’s rocklike penis. So she’s writing a character with a hormonal crush that she BELIEVES is troo luv which she PRETENDS is a crush…. this is like a matryoshka doll of stupid.
“That’s right,” she agreed, easily pleased.
“Because I have the mental capacity of a concussed squirrel, and will blindly believe anything you say.”
So because Smeyer has run out of boring shit for these two to say to each other, Bella’s mom decides to leave because her husband is gonna call soon, and she has to break the wonderful news that Bella is NOT coming to Florida and thus they can have wild monkey sex on the kitchen island without bothering her sexless lump of a daughter. Bella tries to get her to go back home to sleep rather than taking up a bed at the hospital that could be used for a mortally wounded person, but her mom doesn’t wanna.
Why, you may ask? “Someone broke into that dance studio around the corner from the house and burned it to the ground — there’s nothing left at all! And they left a stolen car right out front.” Yes, because cleaning the damn floor is too complex for Alice “Fortune Cookie” Cullen – she has to burn down the building.
Also…. what stolen car? Is that supposed to be the Cullens’ car? Is it how James got there? WHAT?
“Do you remember when you used to dance there, honey?”
“I remember.” I shivered, and winced.
“I was actually expected to get up and move by myself, instead of just lying there like a lump. It was horrible!”
“No, Mom, I’ll be fine. Edward will be with me.”
She looked like that might be why she wanted to stay.
I’m pretty sure the ICU doesn’t have a lot of wild teenage sex going on. Wild doctor sex in the morgue, yeah, but not teenage patients with multiple fractures.
“I love you, too, Bella. Try to be more careful when you walk, honey, I don’t want to lose you.”
Wow. That was a baaaaaaaddddd line. I mean, imagine a mom actually SAYING that line.
A nurse comes in, Bella’s mom leaves, and we get another stupid moment: “Are you feeling anxious, honey? Your heart rate got a little high there.”
“And it looks like your heart stopped for about fifteen seconds. Hmm, I have to bring in Dr. Crocker, and he’ll schedule you for a heart operation, sweetie. We’ll have to stick a pacemaker in there.”
After the nurse leaves, Edward stops pretending to nap and the boring dialogue hits us in the face.
“You stole a car?” I raised my eyebrows.
He smiled, unrepentant. “It was a good car, very fast.”
Yeah, because apparently the vampire squad couldn’t call a fucking ambulance, with the stuff to help keep people alive. And speed means that you won’t be stopped by actual TRAFFIC in your way. Or pedestrians. Or did Edward and his loving, caring, moral family kill a bunch of people to save Bawla?
He looked down while he answered. “I’m surprised. I thought Florida… and your mother… well, I thought that’s what you would want.”
It’s called inconsistent character development, dumbass.
So Bella displays that she’s a dumbass by whining, “But you’d be stuck inside all day in Florida. You’d only be able to come out at night, just like a real vampire.” That line cracks me up, because it means even Smeyer can’t take her vampires seriously – by her own admission, they’re not “real” vampires, but sparkly girl toys who happen to drink blood.
But because Bella is stupid, Edward has to spell it out for her: “I would stay in Forks, Bella. Or somewhere like it,” he explained. “Someplace where I couldn’t hurt you anymore.” This is Bella’s cue to give us a preview of her behavior in New Moon, aka Ultra-Emo Breakdown.
It didn’t sink in at first. I continued to stare at him blankly as the words one by one clicked into place in my head like a ghastly puzzle. I was barely conscious of the sound of my heart accelerating, though, as my breathing became hyperventilation, I was aware of the sharp aching in my protesting ribs.
Sheesh, drama queen. He just said that if you had moved to Florida, which you have ALREADY DECIDED NOT TO DO, he would not have come with you! It’s a purely theoretical scenario. But just the hypothetical IDEA of living in another state from him causes her to have a full-blown panic attack with CHEST PAINS. This would send any REAL guy rushing off into the hills.
So another nurse randomly wanders in, and asks if Bella needs any more pain meds. She then wanders out again.
… DO SOMETHING, DAMMIT! This chapter is BORING.
“Shhh, Bella, calm down.”
“Don’t leave me,” I begged in a broken voice.
“I’m a pathetic clingy woman who falls apart at the mere suggestion of a man not being there to treat me like shit! Don’t leave me!”
“Bella.” He stroked my face anxiously. “I’m not going anywhere. I’ll be right here as long as you need me.”
“And since you’re incredibly clingy, helpless and passive, you’ll probably need me for the rest of your miserable life.”
So he gaaaaazzzeeessss into her eyes until she stops whimpering and freaking out for no reason, and as soon as he looks away, Bawla starts… whimpering and freaking out for no reason. She starts whining, “Are you tired of having to save me all the time? Do you want me to go away?”
In a just world, he would say yes, Bella would slit her wrists with the IV needle, and I would be spared all the shitty sequels yet to come. But seriously, is she that dumb? He explicitly said RIGHT TO HER that he would live somewhere where he couldn’t HURT HER ANYMORE. How did she translate that into “Waaaaahhhh he’s sick of caring for my useless ass!”?
Also, THIS is why nobody could actually buy Bella as a wise, mature human being – because Smeyer keeps showing us that she’s not. She’s a hysterical, immature idiot who keeps blowing random stuff into huge misunderstandings just for Teh Drahmaz.
“No, I don’t want to be without you, Bella, of course not. Be rational.”
“I know you’re a woman which makes you automatically a hysterical idiot but…”
“And I have no problem with saving you, either — if it weren’t for the fact that I was the one putting you in danger… that I’m the reason that you’re here.”
Yes yes yes, you’re so remorseful that you’re putting her miserable ass in danger, but you’re also horny so you won’t stop doing that. We’ve heard your emo vampire song before. Bored now.
“Yes, you are the reason.”
And yes, I consider this sort of schmaltzy love song song a pretty accurate portrait of Bella’s tiny brain.
I frowned. “The reason I’m here — alive.”
“Barely.” His voice was just a whisper. “Covered in gauze and plaster and hardly able to move.”
- She has a few broken bones and some blood loss. That hardly counts as “barely alive.”
- So apparently Edward’s definition of “barely alive” is being bandaged and having some casts?
- Since most of Bella’s injuries were caused by her own blinding stupidity, I’m not exactly weeping tears of blood here.
“I wasn’t referring to my most recent near-death experience,” I said, growing irritated. “I was thinking of the others — you can take your pick. If it weren’t for you, I would be rotting away in the Forks cemetery.”
“You can take your pick”? What, the ONE near-death experience, and the near-rape? She makes it sound like she’s had dozens since getting to Forks.
But Edward basically whines about how wah wah wah it was all so horrible, and he thought he was going to kill her himself. Because the ever-saintly Joseph Smith Carlisle refused to do it for no reason at all. Of course, this doesn’t bother Bella at all – after all, it shouldn’t bother you if your boyfriend is constantly tempted to KILL YOU. So Bella starts panicking again, which leads to more silly melodrama.
“Promise me,” I whispered.
“You know what.” I was starting to get angry now.
“Promise you’ll always treat me like absolute crap, no matter what! I’m pathetically codependent, which means just the IDEA of you not being around makes me panic.”
“I don’t seem to be strong enough to stay away from you, so I suppose that you’ll get your way… whether it kills you or not,”
So then Bella demands to know why Edward didn’t just let her become a vampire too. The easy answer is of course that he couldn’t shove her around if she was as strong as he is, and because Smeyer wants to milk the wangst for a few more books. But of course, the fact that Bella knows the basics of vampirism MAKES EDWARD MAD EDWARD SMASH!
“I’ll be the first to admit that I have no experience with relationships,” I said. “But it just seems logical… a man and woman have to be somewhat equal… as in, one of them can’t always be swooping in and saving the other one. They have to save each other equally.”
Oh boy, I think I peed myself a little. Stephenie Meyer is trying to talk to us about gender equality…. which is like John Norman lecturing us on respecting women, or Robert Jordan talking to us about not using filler, or Laurell K. Hamilton telling us that sex shouldn’t replace plot!
I mean, who is this woman kidding? She has spent this entire shitty book showing us that women should just do whatever a man says, and if she doesn’t, he is free to bully, force or abuse her into doing what he says. She has repeatedly shoved it in our faces that the ideal relationship is NOT an equal one, but a bullying older male who gives all the orders and a hysterical, oversexed, childlike female who should be fine with being constantly mocked, stalked and sneered at.
This does not work, Smeyer. You do not get to spend the whole book showing us that men should treat women like idiot children, and then try to play the “equal relationship card” and just make us fucking forget it all.
And you know what’s REALLY stupid about this? Smeyer doesn’t even know what an equal relationship involves! Apparently she thinks it’s about “saving each other equally” – NO IT’S FUCKING NOT. It’s about having respect for each other and acting as such, you dumb twit. Does she really think that a Green Beret and a person in a wheelchair can’t have an equal relationship?! BECAUSE THEY CAN.
Evidently he’d decided he wasn’t angry with me. I hoped I’d get a chance to warn Alice before he caught up with her.
…. or what, he’ll beat her? I could totally see him trying.
“You have saved me,” he said quietly.
Excuse me, I need to go vomit now. Also two minutes ago he was wangsting about “OH NOEZ I IZ A MONSTER!”, but now he’s claiming he’s been “saved”? From WHAT?
“I can’t always be Lois Lane,” I insisted. “I want to be Superman, too.”
“A really, really ineffectual whiny Superman who never saves anybody and just sits around whining and being bossed around. I wanna be that.”
And you wanna know what’s funny? In DC’s next reboot (they have them every couple years), they retconned out Lois Lane’s relationship with Superman, and paired him… with Wonder Woman. Because they didn’t believe in an equal relationship between two people of different strength. LIKE SMEYER.
“You don’t know what you’re asking.” His voice was soft; he stared intently at the edge of the pillowcase.
“I think I do.”
“I want to be rich, pretentious, sparkly, elitist and carded at bars for all eternity!”
“Do you wish that Carlisle hadn’t saved you?”
“No, I don’t wish that.” He paused before continuing. “But my life was over. I wasn’t giving anything up.”
Yes, it’s all about YOU, you selfish asshole. I mean, apparently after all your whining about hurting people and what a monster you are… you don’t even regret that you turned into a vampire. No, it’s all “Well, I wouldn’t have missed out on anything since I was dying already. Sure, some people died horrible deaths because of my selfish teen rebellion, but hey, who cares? I’m rich and sparkly.”
And hey, it’s not like free will should take any part of it. It’s not like some people would rather die than become a vampire. Carlisle didn’t do anything WRONG, see? He’s morally perfect!
“You are my life. You’re the only thing it would hurt me to lose.” I was getting better at this. It was easy to admit how much I needed him.
Yeah, so much for her claims that she loves her mom so much. Apparently mommy could just die right there and then, and it wouldn’t hurt her at all. Edward living in another state? I MIGHT AS WELL BE DEAD OH WOE!
So Eddie is determined to not make her a vampire. Bella whines. Edward refuses. Bella demands. Edward gets angry that she knows anything at all about vampirism. Bella is melodramatic. Edward puts a clown nose on. And then he pulls a stupid trump card: “Charlie?” he asked curtly. “Renée?”
Yeah. Again, why are we even pretending that Bella gives a crap about her parents? We’ve seen that she doesn’t. She even said so in as many words just a minute ago!
“Look, that’s not an issue either,” I finally muttered; my voice was as unconvincing as it always was when I lied. “Renée has always made the choices that work for her — she’d want me to do the same. And Charlie’s resilient, he’s used to being on his own. I can’t take care of them forever. I have my own life to live.”
In other words:
I’m honestly not convinced she’s lying. I mean, if you think about it, she’s trying to convince him that he should turn her into a vampire REGARDLESS of her relationship with her parents… and she’s just lying by allegedly saying it doesn’t bother her. But if it DID bother her, she wouldn’t immediately lie to try to convince him.
So yeah, Bella is a bitch who just announced, “Yeah, I don’t really care about my parents. I mean, my mom is an irresponsible flake so I should get to be too, and my dad is so pathetic that it won’t matter if I leave him AGAIN.”
Bella starts whining again, while Edward insists that he doesn’t wanna take her life away, especially since she’s going to recover. So Bawla turns up the melodrama to 11.
Then she starts whining that “If you’re waiting for me to be on my deathbed, I’ve got news for you! I was just there!” Bad dialogue burns.
“No,” I said slowly. “I’m not.”
His forehead creased. “Of course you are. You may have a scar or two…”
“You’re wrong,” I insisted. “I’m going to die.”
“Really, Bella.” He was anxious now. “You’ll be out of here in a few days. Two week at most.”
I glared at him. “I may not die now… but I’m going to die sometime. Every minute of the day, I get closer. And I’m going to get old.”
OH NOEZ! Imagine being MORTAL. It’s the worst thing in the world! Except getting old – that’s even worse than dying! You know, that getting old and dying thing that EVERYBODY does if they possibly can because the alternative is dying YOUNG.
And yes, I am not really kidding about this – Smeyer later writes Bella as having an angstgasm when she realizes that she’s a WHOLE YEAR older than Edward physically. Because eighteen is “old”! I guess we know why Carlisle doesn’t turn anyone except teenagers – Smeyer doesn’t think anything after that is worth living.
Edward appears to be getting a headache in this scene, since he’s doing the migraine head-rub while announcing that HELLO DUMB BITCH, it’s perfectly natural and normal.
I snorted. He opened his eyes in surprise. “That’s stupid. That’s like going to someone who’s just won the lottery, taking their money, and saying, ‘Look, let’s just go back to how things should be. It’s better that way.’ And I’m not buying it.”
No, YOU are stupid. Bella didn’t win the immortality “lottery,” she met a guy who COULD make her immortal. Winning the lottery and taking it back would be comparable to her being made immortal, and then unwillingly made mortal again. There’s nothing to “take back!” METAPHOR PHAIL!
Just because you KNOW that something exists doesn’t make it yours. If you found buried treasure in Mike’s backyard, that wouldn’t mean it was yours. It would be HIS.
And honestly, this whole exchange really shows what the Bella/Edward relationship is all about. Bella is basically a gold-digger, except instead of wanting straight-up money, she wants immortality and all the perks of the Cullen lifestyle (including the money). Edward is the only way she can get that, so she pesters him non-stop without even thinking about the ramifications or effects. No, it’s all about Bella wanting the prize and trying to snatch it however she can.
Notice that she doesn’t argue something like, “I hate the thought that I will grow old and die while you will live on, and we’ll be separated forever” or something like that, as you’d expect someone who genuinely loves an immortal to think. No, it’s “I don’t wanna get old.” Edward doesn’t even enter the equation! He’s just the means to an end.
“I’m hardly a lottery prize,” he growled.
“That’s right. You’re much better.”
“… because you have a penis!”
Wow, damning with faint praise, much?
“Bella, we’re not having this discussion anymore. I refuse to damn you to an eternity of night and that’s the end of it.”
I think that line about “an eternity of night” (which sounds like a bad Anne Rice fanfic) actually made me vomit blood.
It also makes no sense, since the Cullens DO go outside in the daytime. They just avoid direct sunlight. Which I do, so I guess that means I’m damned to an eternity of night.
So since their relationship means SO much to Bella, she immediately threatens to run off to Alice and ask HER to make her into a vampire. Or, you know, any of the OTHER vampires hanging around.
“If you think that’s the end, then you don’t know me very well,” I warned him.
Yes, she’s so independent and unwilling to bend to other people’s wills. We’ve seen that through the whole book… oh wait, she’s been a total dishrag for the whole book so Eddie won’t get mad at her, and she only turns on the bitch routine when he refuses to give her the “prize.”
“You’re not the only vampire I know.”
His eyes went black again. “Alice wouldn’t dare.”
- “She wouldn’t dare do something that I have expressly forbidden! I’m a man! With a penis! Which means my word is law!”
- Once again, Smeyer just IGNORES the whole sexual subtext that SHE HERSELF put in. Edward wants to suck Bella’s blood? Oooh, it’s a metaphor for Teh Sexxsiness! Bella wants Alice to bite her? Carlisle hunts down pretty dying boys to turn into his “companions”? Uhhhh… no subtext in that! No gay stuff allowed!
- And this totally shows us what Bella’s relationship with Edward is worth? For someone who had a panic attack at the IDEA of him living in another state, she seems awfully calm at the idea of wrecking their relationship by going behind his back…. as long as she gets to be a hot sparkly immortal too.
So then Bella realizes that the reason Edward has been glaring at Alice for the whole fucking book is…. because Alice saw a vision of Bawla as a vampire. Unless, you know, Edward DOESN’T change his mind and her vision changes yet again. Whoopdefrickindoo, anyone who’s read a bad Mary Sue vampire story knew that from the beginning.
In fact, Edward even points out that Alice has been totally wrong before…. which doesn’t stop him from believing EVERYTHING else she says in the ENTIRE series. Bella just snidely says, “You’ll never catch me betting against Alice.” Unless, of course, Alice says something that the Brat Queen doesn’t like, then it’ll be “Alice’s visions aren’t always right!”
So they glare at each other, and totally don’t agree on anything. Wow, I wonder if this is going to carry over into the inevitable bland sequels. So then Edward decides Bawla doesn’t feel well and that she needs to be sedated. Since he is the Big Strong Man, he ignores Bawla’s refusals to go to sleep and calls the nurse. I’m amazed he didn’t knock her out by punching her in the face – we seem to be pretty close to that.
“You need rest. All this arguing isn’t good for you.”
“And since you’re four years old, you have to do as I say.”
“I DON’T WANNA! I DON’T WANNA!”
“I think we’re ready for more pain medication,” he said calmly, ignoring my furious expression.
“Nurse, please dope the hysterical woman into silence. Yes, she claims she doesn’t need it, but I’M the one who knows what’s best for her. Because I’m a man. With a penis. Obey me, feeble woman!”
Bella has another panic attack over the idea of closing her eyes, even though her creepy stalker boyfriend has already said he’ll stick around.
“I told you I’m not going anywhere. Don’t be afraid. As long as it makes you happy, I’ll be here.”
I smiled back, ignoring the ache in my cheeks. “You’re talking about forever, you know.”
“… or until you turn me into a hot rich immortal, and I get bored by our sex life and end up having an affair with Alice.”
“Oh, you’ll get over it — it’s just a crush.”
I shook my head in disbelief— it made me dizzy. “I was shocked when Renée swallowed that one. I know you know better.”
See what I mean? Smeyer is writing an idiot with a crush insisting that it’s troo luv but covering it up by saying it’s just a crush. Again, a matryoshka doll of stupid.
So the nurse comes in, and Edward stares at Bella while she puts some knockout drugs in Bawla’s IV. Then she leaves to find a bucket when they start being generically soppy again.
“Like I said, as long as it makes you happy… as long as it’s what’s best for you.”
I tried to shake my head, but it was too heavy. “‘S not the same thing,” I mumbled.
He laughed. “Don’t worry about that now, Bella. You can argue with me when you wake up.”
I think I smiled. ‘”Kay.”
I could feel his lips at my ear.
“I love you,” he whispered.
“I know,” he laughed quietly.
I think this crap was churned out of the Boring Romantic Dialogue Generator. I mean, you could past this silly stuff into any bad romance and it would fit like a glove.
And it amazes me that the woman who wrote this actually rates this romance above that of Shakespeare, Austen, and other writers whose boots she is not worthy to lick.
So before Bella passes out, she has to have a parting shot:
There was just one more thing I wanted to tell him.
“Edward?” I struggled to pronounce his name clearly.
“I’m betting on Alice,” I mumbled.
Of course you are, you dumb bitch. She said what you wanted to hear. If she had said, “You’ll marry Mike, have eleven kids, live in a shack in the woods drowning your sorrows in a bottle of Jack Daniels, and die old, ugly and miserable,” would you still be betting on her?
And thankfully this HORRIBLE chapter ends there, yet again with a Paoliniesque “passing-out” ending.