Blogging New Moon: Part 6
Chapter Six: Friends
Better Title: [In sing-song fashion] Jacob Has a Girlfriend, Jacob Has a Girlfriend.
Though there are no fights or explosions or Emmett, this is the best chapter of the book so far. For the first time, the story seems real. The chapter picks up with Bella hanging out in Jacob's garage as he begins to take apart the motorcycles to see what needs to be fixed. While working, he tells her about his school and his two friends, the oddly named Quil and Embry, which when said together sound like a British meat dish served with eggs.
Jacobs says that these guys don't like anyone mocking their unusual names, and would beat up anyone who did. Just as he's explaining the rules of Quil and Embry, the two guys show up looking for him. They seem nice, but nothing special. Quil is a bit more muscular, and Embry is tall and lanky. (Note: I may be confusing the two.) Quil seems taken by Bella and doesn't stop staring at her (or maybe she has a visible booger and the somewhat sheltered Quil has never seen one before).
The three guys talk about motorcycles for a while, and she doesn't quite understand what they're saying, claiming that you'd need a Y chromosome to appreciate the conversation. I take offense to that. Not all guys are into cars and motorcycles. I'm not. I prefer chariots.
Bella says she needs to get home to cook dinner for her dad, and says she'll be back tomorrow to go with Jacob and pick up the parts they need. He still feels bad that she's paying for the parts, but she stands firm and heads home. As she leaves, she hears the three guys goofing around and hitting each other. This is what guys do. They don't stare at girls when they sleep and compose lullabies in their spare time.
The sound of the guys ragging on each other cheers up Bella considerably, and she even laughs. You read that right. She can laugh! That's like finding out that a tree can burp. Instead of despising Bella with all my heart, now I just hate her. I feel the same way about her as I do about olives. If you put her in a salad, I would just eat around her and not complain. (That analogy may not make sense. I'm hungry.)
She returns home and tells her dad that she had a good time at Jacob's house. Her dad asks a few questions, and then she goes to bed, despite worrying that she will be haunted by nightmares and Edward-pain. But she doesn't have bad dreams, and instead wakes up feeling better. She thinks hanging out with Jacob helps her attitude because being with him doesn't remind her of Edward. That's probably because Jacob has yet to utter the words "danger," "desire," or "You smell like freesia."
At breakfast, she tells her dad that she's going to Jacob's again. Charlie says he's going fishing with his friend Harry. The quick-thinking Bella then suggests that Billy go fishing with them as well. This way no one will be around to see the motorcycles at the Black homestead. Charlie thinks that's a good idea and makes a few calls as Bella heads out the door (cackling that her master scheme has worked, I assume).
She drives to Jacob's house and he gets in her truck, saying they should look at the dump for spare parts before spending money at a store. He says it may cost $100 or more to fix these bikes. She's says that's fine; she'll use the money she saved for college. Who has time for college when you need to get emotional revenge on an ex-boyfriend who is most likely hundreds, if not thousands of miles away? (Besides, "Achieved emotional revenge," looks great on résumés.)
Bella says she's having fun, even at the dump, and hanging out with Jacob is great because he's a happy, easygoing guy. Compared to the moody Edward, Jacob must seem like the Dane Cook of friends, only not eye-gaugingly annoying.
Jacob finds a few parts at the dump and then they drive to the auto parts store, which is two hours away. Where the hell was the dump? Ohio? But Jacob passes the time by chatting about his friends and Bella seems genuinely interested, because she's falling madly in love with this amazing guy. She just doesn't know it yet.
He then realizes that he's been doing all the talking, and asks her to tell him about herself. She says there's nothing much to say and that her friends are boring compared to people like Quil. He says Quil might be interested in her, but she says he's too young. Ouch! Jacob is about the same age as Quil, so he doesn't take the news that Bella doesn't date youngsters very well.
This starts a friendly game of using other methods to determine one's true age. For instance, Jacob says that because he's tall, his true age is older. And Bella says that because women mature faster than boys, she should be considered older. This silly conversation goes on for a bit, even after they leave the store, and they determine that Jacob's true age is 30 and Bella's true age is 23. And judging by the new rules, Edward would be about 100 years old. (And not a spry, "I take a drink of whiskey every day" type of 100-year-old. I'm talking about the sad, bedridden, "I need help to blink" type of 100-year-old.)
Back at La Push, which is where Jacob lives, Bella says she almost forgot the reason she wanted a motorcycle in the first place: to break the promise she made to Edward by being reckless. Jacob is so charming he makes her forget that a few days ago she was about to curl up and die of a broken heart and possible undiagnosed brain tumor. She should just make out with him already, with tongues.
He gets to work on the bikes, and she admires his abilities as a mechanic. She's about to get going when she hears Charlie call her name. After their fishing trip, Charlie went back to Billy's house, and Bella and Jacob need to make sure he doesn't see the motorcycles. They have to quickly get out of the garage and cut Charlie off before he noses around. Jacob leads Bella through the dark by her hand. Guys, if you ever want a girl to fall in love with you, grab her hand and lead her through someplace dark, such as a planetarium, garage, or planetarium's garage. This will work 87% of the time. (Tip: The harder you tug, the less she'll giggle.)
The slight fear of having their secret project revealed, along with the flirty hand-holding, makes Bella laugh. She finds her dad and starts laughing again. Billy invites them both to dinner, along with Harry and Harry's wife and kids. They eat spaghetti outside, because there are too many people to fit in the house.
I assume if the Cullens had friends over for dinner they would offer the guests lobster and duck served in a white wine sauce by candlelight in the ballroom. They probably would also make you take your shoes off before you came in the house, and if you asked "Can I use the restroom," Carlisle would reply, "Why I don't know. CAN you use the restroom? Tut-tut. I believe you meant to ask 'MAY I uses the restroom?'."
Nothing much exciting happens during dinner, but the whole evening seems real and pleasant. Bella gives Charlie a lift back to their house, and he seems happy that she's taking an interest in Jacob. (Even if Bella is still too dumb to see him as boyfriend material).
At home, she reads an email from her mom, and feels awful about acting so sad the past couple of months. So she writes her mom a more upbeat response. But even after having a happy day, she wakes up after suffering from a nightmare. This time in her dream she's not alone in the woods, but is with Sam Uley. I'm not sure why Sam Uley is frightening. Maybe he has a big scary nose, or snakes for hands.
Back at school, Bella is not being noticed by anyone. No one, except for Mike, likes her very much, probably because she was antisocial for months after the breakup. In class, she tries to chat with Jessica, but Jess is still upset about Friday night…for reasons I still do not understand.
At lunch, Bella feels ostracized from all the conversations at her table. She tries to interject a thought or two, but is ignored. When Angela tells everyone she had to cancel her camping trip because she saw a giant bear, no one really believes her until Bella speaks up and says that two guys at the sporting goods saw the same giant bear. Mike confirms Bella's story and Bella is brought back into the conversation, slightly.
After lunch, Angela tells Bella she's glad she stuck up for her bear story. Bella tells us that she always liked Angela more than Jessica, and it seems that Angela (and of course Mike) accepts Bella back into the group, even if nasty Jessica and the awful Lauren still act cold towards her.
The chapter ends as Bella remembers that one year ago yesterday she first arrived at Forks, and that nothing much has changed. (Except she now knows that monsters are real, and what it feels like to kiss a 109-year-old.)
Prediction: Just as things are beginning to heat up between Bella and Jacob, Edward comes galloping into town on a white horse. He grabs Bella by the scruff of her neck and flings her onto his horse. Before charging away with the giddy, lovesick Bella, Edward looks back at Jacob and shouts, "Don't hate the player. Hate the game."