Chapter Fifteen: Tick Tock Tick Tock Tick Tock
Bella's Title: Pain Clouds
Human-vampire hybrid babies have 24 chromosomal pairs. This explains everything! Humans have 23 and vampires have 25. The baby would obviously take the average of its two parents. That's just science, plain and simple. A child whose father is 6 feet tall and whose mother is 2 feet tall will grow up to be exactly 4 feet tall. Duh!
The chapter begins with Jacob and Seth mind-talking with each other as they run patrols. Instead of Breaking Dawn, they should have named this book "Patrol Running: The Endless Race Against Logic." Running patrols isn't even necessary. Jacob, Seth, and Leah could easily spy on Sam and the other wolves. It's not like Sam is hiding. He's at his house. Jake should hide out in the bushes near Sam's house instead of running continuous laps around the Cullen compound. He's running so much that if Sam does attack, Jake will be useless.
SAM: I'm going to kill you now!
JACOB: Hold on (puff puff)…I just need a moment (puff puff). So many patrols to run (puff puff). Can I get a Gatorade or something?
QUIL: Don't give my girlfriend a Capri Sun, because she'll just squeeze the bag and make a mess.
Jacob thinks the Cullens should move Bella to Alaska, away from the evil werewolves. Silly, foolish, sexy Jacob. You're so naive. Moving Bella away from danger is much too logical. Next you'll ask the Cullens to stop going to high school all the time.
Seth says that he already brought it up with Edward, but the Cullens can't move Bella now. She's too frail and sick due to the pregnancy. Plus, all of Carlisle's medical equipment is here in Forks, and it would be difficult to get new supplies in Alaska. Seth also mentions that Carlisle's supply of human blood is running low, so Dr. C. will have to go buy more. I assume he buys it from the blood bank. And I'm sure it's a simple transaction that needs no explanation whatsoever.
CARLISLE: Hello, kind sir. I'd like some blood.
BLOOD SALESMAN: Of course. How much will you need?
CARLISLE: Enough to feed a woman and a fetal demon. Er…um…I mean, I need it for a knee surgery. I'm a doctor. For reals.
BLOOD SALESMAN: OK. That makes sense. How much do you want?
CARLISLE: I need five gallons.
BLOOD SALESMAN: That seems like a lot.
CARLISLE: Indeed. The knee surgery is for a great big fat man. He's going to need lots of blood.
BLOOD SALESMAN: That will be $18.99.
QUIL: I'm here too, for some reason. My girlfriend is 3!
Seth tells Jacob that Optimus Beyonce broke another one of Bella's ribs and now Bella is running a patrol low-grade fever. But Belly is in good spirits and talks to her mom and dad on the phone.
Charlie and Renee, being complete idiots, are under the impression that Bella is suffering from a strange tropical disease she picked up in South America. They believe Bella is being quarantined and cannot have any visitors. Note to self: Go to Forks, WA and commit lots of crime, because the chief of police is stupid. Second note to self: Buy paper towels and Hamburger Helper at the store.
I can understand Renee buying the cover story because she's flakey, but Charlie is the chief of police. It's his job not only to sniff out lies and injustice, but to question the facts until the truth is revealed. How can he stand by and let his daughter have a mystery illness? He nearly shot her in the head with a shotgun after he found out about her motorcycle. So he's more than a bit protective. If this were a real person, with a real daughter, I'd imagine he would be calling every medical professional in the world trying to figure out what's happening. Instead, Charlie sits at home and watches basketball while waiting for his daughter to get better. I assume he uses a similar tactic to defeat bank robbers.
After running a patrol, Jacob stops by the Cullen house to see Bella. She smiles brightly when he walks into the house. Jake hasn't eaten in a while, and Alice tells Rosalie to get him some food. Jacob and Rose always bicker with each other and Jake hurls a few blonde jokes at her. I never understood why the vampires hate the werewolves, but Rose's attitude toward Jake makes even less sense.
The other Cullens are thankful that Jake is around to run patrols. But not Rosalie. She hates Jacob, and though she brings him something to eat, she serves it to him in makeshift dog bowl. Why all the hostility? Oh, right. Because vampire-human hybrids have 24 chromosomes.
Bella and Jacob chat as Jake eats from his dog bowl. He asks when the baby is due, and using some sort of convoluted vampire math that involves centimeters and time, Bella decides she'll be ready to pop in four days.
Jake doesn't take the news well. Only two things can happen when it's time to deliver the baby. Either Bella will die during the delivery, or she will be turned into a vampire. Both options leave Jake without his best friend. It's so sad. Meanwhile, across town, Conner is probably sitting at home, just waiting for a best friend to stop by. Find out how his story ends in my fan fiction novel, Conner and Jacob Go to the Zoo, Part 1: Monkeys. (It's a 19-part series.)
Bella falls asleep and Jacob asks Edward why Charlie was talking to her. Edward agrees that talking to Charlie was a bad idea, but it's what Bella wanted. And whatever Bella wants, Bella gets. I dare you to find a moment in this series when Bella asks or wishes for something and doesn't get it. No, I double dog dare you. Hell, I even triple salamander dare you.
On top of everything else, Bella also wants to see her dad after she becomes a vampire. Jake and Edward are concerned that Charlie will notice something is up when his daughter looks different and refuses to age. I wouldn't worry about that, guys. Just put a basketball game on and you could show Charles a mutated version of Bella with tentacles for arms and carrots for legs and he'd probably say, "Oh. That’s nice. Sports!"
Bella's master plan is to work around the rules of vampires. She can't tell her dad the truth, but if Charlie somehow figured out what happened to his daughter on his own, then she couldn't be held accountable by the Volturi. This is a problem for a variety of reasons.
First, if I saw an old friend who now looked a billion times more attractive, and had different eye color, and didn't eat food or go out in the sun, I wouldn't jump to the conclusion that she was a vampire. I would assume she's just being difficult after having a makeover.
Second, this is a lousy loophole. Bella can't use words to tell her dad about vampires, but playing charades is acceptable? If that's the case, why doesn't Bella tell him the truth via sign language, or a language the Volturi can't understand, such as Dan-Latin? (Dan-Latin is similar to English, except you replace all the G's with P's and all the N's with the color yellow. And when you write it out, you dot the I's with very tiny pictures of a man walking a dog.)
And third, if this is such a big deal, why not turn Charlie into a vampire too? His special power would be a super-human ability to watch any sporting event. I'm serious. Why wouldn't Carlisle transform Charlie? I see no downside to that scenario and I've been thinking about it for a good 20 seconds.
To better prepare to Optimus Beyonce's arrival, Emmett and Jasper have been researching vampire babies for a few days. Emmett? Doing research? I don't see that happening. Maybe he turns the pages of ancient tomes with his reading hatchet. Why would you send Emmett on a mission to read when the werewolves could attack at any moment? He's the muscle of this group. Why not send Alice? Alice hates being around Bella anyway, and surely Emmett could be doing much greater things than reading dusty books, such as surfing on lava inside a giant volcano, an event I like to call Emmetting.
Still, I love whenever the book gives us hints of vampire lore. Emmett and Jasper find there isn't much written about vampire babies, and the information they do get is probably unreliable. We do know that the baby will chew and claw its way out of the mother's belly.
That's gross. Also silly. I won't get graphic, but why punch a hole through a wall when there's a perfectly good door to climb through?
Jake and Edward don't like thinking about the baby killing Bella. But Rose chimes in and says everything is going to be OK because Bella will have people to take care of her. The other alleged vampire mommies all gave birth in less controlled environments, such as caves and swamps. Optimus Beyonce will be born under the careful watch of Carlisle, so there's nothing to worry about.
But it's clear that Rose is only thinking about the baby and doesn't really care much for Bella's safety. Jake and Edward sense this too and so Jake throws his dog dish at Rose's head.
FIGHT! FIGHT FIGHT!
Sadly, there is no fight. Rose doesn't attack, but coldly says, "You. Got. Food. In. My. Hair." (In Dan-Latin, this would be "You. Pot. Food. I[the color yellow]. My. Hair.") This causes everyone to laugh, tensions are eased, and Bella wakes up moaning in pain because the baby is moving.
Optimus is growing so fast it makes Bella think of the way Jacob grew up right before her eyes. And with that, Carlisle theorizes that the vampire-human hybrid has 24 chromosomal pairs just like werewolves, because the fetus is growing fast, like a werewolf. This guy would look at a child inflating a balloon and say, "That balloon must have 24 chromosomes, because it's growing at an alarming rate." He would also accuse a bag of microwave popcorn of being a werewolf because it expands rapidly.
His theory about chromosomes clearly and logically explains the baby's growth rate, and also explains why Alice can't see the child's future. The child, like a werewolf, has the correct number of chromosomes to block Alice's very reasonable powers. It all makes sense. (Sarcasm hand is raised so high that an astronaut just said, "Stop that. It tickles.")
The rest of the Cullens talk about science as Jacob's mind wanders. He can't keep up with the brilliant chromosome conversation, but instead realizes that the only way to get the baby out of Bella is to somehow cut threw the protective womb, which is as strong as vampire skin. And the only thing that can cut through vampire skin is either werewolf or vampire teeth. And thus, someone is going to have to chew the baby out of Bella and then spit it out, just like a watermelon seed.
Murmurs: 3 (Book total: 36)
Mutters: 3 (Book total: 26)
Number of times I used "patrol" today: 8 (Including this one)
Emmett and Jasper continue their research.
JASPER: According to this book, a vampire baby can see in the dark.
EMMETT: According to my fist, you're a nerd. [EMMETT PUNCHES JASPER]
JASPER: Come on. We need to do this or else Bella will die.
EMMETT: This book smells like book-farts.
JASPER: Why don't you go find another book, then?
EMMETT: I don't wanna.
JASPER: Get to work or so help me, I will move sideways.
JASPER: I will move sideways all over your face!
JASPER: I'm telling mom that you won't help.
EMMETT: Go ahead, tattler.
JASPER: Don't call me that! You promised you wouldn't be mean to me. Mom said so.
EMMETT: Mom said so. But mom ain't here, Ass-per.
JASPER: Stop it! I'm calling Mom and Dad right now.
EMMETT: You sound like a baby.
JASPER: [ON THE PHONE] Hello, Mom? Emmett is being mean. And he's making fun of my scars.
EMMETT: I am not! You're such a liar!
JASPER: Mom says you need to be nice to me because I'm sensitive. She also says my scars make me unique.
EMMETT: Whatever. I'm going to wait for Quil.
JASPER: What's Quil got to do with anything?
EMMETT: He usually pops up, says something about his girlfriend, and then disappears. He should be here any minute.
QUIL: My girlfriend is pretty good at The Farmer in the Dell. But she gets cranky if she ends up being the cheese. So let her be the wife or the cat. Thanks guys. I owe you one.
More Quil one-liners await you in the Blogging Twilight archives!