Blogging Twilight: Part 18
Dan Bergstein is reading Twilight and blogging about it. Need to catch up? Previous posts are here.
Bella wakes up in a strange hotel room. She looks around, trying to get her bearings, and begins to piece together what happened the previous day. She vaguely remembers driving in the well-tinted Mercedes, sitting in the back seat with Alice as Jasper drove fast. Am I the only one picking up some sexual tension between Alice and Bella? Alice carried her to the car before leaving, and sat in the backseat with her on the trip to Phoenix. Hmm.
Bella goes over the events that led her to this road trip: The tracker. Edward getting angry. Her fake fight with her dad. Saying goodbye to Edward. Leaving with Alice and Jasper. The way Emmett fought that T-Rex. (OK, that last one was just my recollection of the events.)
She knows Jasper made the trip to Phoenix in a single day. And they're staying near the airport in case they need to fly out quickly. Then Bella's memory fades. She gets out of bed and walks to the hotel window to see that it's dark outside. She is still wearing Esme's clothes and is about to change when Alice (conveniently) pops in.
They talk for a bit and Alice says she had some food brought up. Before they left Forks, the fatherly Edward reminded her that Bella needs to eat food more often than vampires do. That conversation probably went something like this:
EDWARD: Alice, take care of my Bella. Remember, she needs to eat food. And make sure she brushes her teeth. Keep an eye on her, because sometimes she just brushes her tongue. She might tell you that she's allowed to eat two bowls of ice cream. Don't fall for it. She's allowed ONE bowl, and only if she eats her carrots. At bedtime, she'll try to stay up later by begging you, "Let me just watch this show until the next commercial." But be strict. And don't forget that she likes her sandwiches cut diagonally, without crusts, and she needs to breathe air.
Bella goes into the front room, where Jasper is staring at the TV. She picks at the food, but is too worried to eat. She says Alice and Jasper sit still, like statues. She asks what the game plan is, and Alice says they need to wait for Carlisle to call. Since he hasn't called yet, Bella is scared.
Jasper tries to soothe her by saying everything will be all right. But Bella doesn't buy that. She freaks out and says that if anything happens to the Cullens, it will be all her fault. And she's right about that.
Jasper says the family won't let anything happen to her. She wonders why this group of vampires is being so nice to her, and Alice explains that they're happy Edward finally found someone to love. Bella has changed him for the better. They can't imagine what would happen if any harm came to her. I imagine Edward would get even moodier and completely ruin Thanksgiving with his grumpy attitude, so it's no wonder that his family wants to keep Bella safe.
Alice's words ease Bella's guilty conscience slightly. They remain inside the hotel room, staring at the TV and doing absolutely nothing. It's situations like this that make me happy to know I have blackjack and a demo version of Bowling on my cell phone if I ever get bored.
Bella says that Alice and Jasper are better at dealing with waiting than she is, which might be due to their long lifespan. For hundreds of years, they've done nothing but sit around eating bears and going to high school. Hanging out in a hotel room for one day is a breeze after their life of boredom.
Bella decides to go back to bed because there's nothing else to do. Alice follows her. (Again, my romance radar is tingling!) Bella can't sleep, so she decides to ask Alice what the others are doing. Alice says that Carlisle wanted to lead James north and then ambush him (or let Santa Claus handle it), while Esme was going to lure Victoria west.
If Victoria gave up on the chase, Esme and Rosalie would go back to Forks and watch over Charlie. Since Carlisle hasn't called yet, Alice thinks things are going as planned, and they can't call because it would give away their position. So all they can do is wait and remind the reader what's happening.
Then Bella asks Alice a burning question: How did you become a vampire? In the world of vamps, this query might be a nice icebreaker at parties. On the other hand, maybe it's something you should never say out loud to a vamp, just as you would never ask a human, "How did you get so fat?" or "What's the deal with that thing under your eye?" But Alice doesn't shy away from the question.
Alice says Edward warned her not to tell Bella. But since Alice is seemingly flirting with Bella, she doesn't mind telling, although she doesn't quite remember how it happened. According to Alice, along with all their super powers, vampires are also equipped with venom that incapacitates a victim once s/he is bitten. She says this venom isn't really crucial, since if a vampire is close enough to bite, his victim doesn't stand much of a chance anyway. It's like a shark that tickles you into submission before biting your head off; unnecessary, but kind of interesting.
The venom doesn't kill you. It just spreads throughout your body, causing severe pain. Depending on where you were bitten, the venom can slowly transform you into a vampire...as long as the vampire biting you decides to let you live. This doesn't happen often because vampires are insatiable and can't stop drinking blood once they start. To put this in perspective, it's probably a lot like eating a Kit-Kat. I dare you to buy a Kit-Kat and only eat one bar. If you tell me you can do that, you are an absolute liar and I don't want you coming to my birthday party, liar.
So Alice thinks this venom transformed her into a vampire, but she doesn't remember the intense pain and suffering that comes with the transformation. Since that pain is usually a vampire's first memory, Alice's situation is unique. Maybe she isn't a vampire at all, but just a weird girl who doesn't age, like Christina Ricci.
The two girls sit in silence for a while, without having a pillow fight, tickle fight, or playing Light as a Feather, Stiff as a Board. This is the worst slumber party ever. Then Alice breaks the silence, not by suggesting they practice kissing, but by saying she just got a flash from the future.
In her mind, Alice sees a mirrored room with a gold line running around it. James, the tracker, has changed his plans. He is no longer following Carlisle, Edward, and Emmett, and instead will be heading to this mystery room. In Alice's vision there is a TV and a VCR in this room. (For those who don't know, a VCR was a type of movie player that used giant, 7-pound cassettes and ran on steam power).
Just then, Carlisle calls Alice, and she tells him that the plans have changed. James has stopped following the vampires and boarded a plane. The idea that the most powerful, magical beings on the planet need to use commercial airlines to travel is absurd. It's like finding out that leprechauns need to pay taxes or ghosts need to take elevators.
Alice then hands the phone to Bella. Edward is on the line. He says that Esme is guarding Charlie back in Forks, and that Victoria is looking for Bella there, but won't be able to pick up the scent. They say goodbye, and Bella notices that Alice is sketching the mirrored room from her vision.
Bella recognizes the sketch as a ballet studio, and except for the TV and VCR, it looks like the one she went to as a child, right here in Phoenix. But she can't be certain that it's the same place, since most ballet studios probably look the same. Still, it might be the same place. (I'll bet $40 bajillion that it is the same place.)
If James is heading to Phoenix, Bella wants to warn her mother, who might have returned from Florida by now. She uses Alice's cell phone to leave a message for her mom to call her immediately. She then picks at some fruit and watches Alice and Jasper stare at the TV. Bella finally falls asleep, and Alice carries her to bed.
Predictions: Bella wakes up when Alice begins to give her a sensual back rub. Alice breaks the awkward moment by saying, "Want to see if I'm ticklish?"
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