Blogging Twilight: Part 22
SparkLife contributor Dan Bergstein is reading Twilight and blogging about it.
Catch up on the first installments here.
Bella wakes up in a hospital room with her hands connected to tubes. Edward is in the room with her. She quickly apologizes for everything. He tells her to chill out, and she asks what happened. He says he arrived at the ballet studio in time to save her from the vicious James. Since we didn't get to see the fight, Edward could be lying just to get attention, like that kid at the park who said he could whirl all the way around the swing set, but only when no one was looking. Sure, when I closed my eyes I heard the swing move, but part of me thinks that kid was just pulling my leg. So maybe Edward didn't save Bella at all, and the evil James just died of a heart attack or vampire polio.
Bella is still frazzled and is worried about her mom. Edward says her mom is safe and is there at the hospital. He lied to Bella's parents, telling them her injuries were the result of a nasty fall down some stairs. She's in bad shape, and had lost a lot of blood. She needed transfusions, which Edward says made her smell wrong to him. But now she's back to smelling Bella-mazing.
With the huge popularity of Twilight, I'm surprised that a perfume company hasn't released a Bella-scented fragrance to help girls attract moody creeps. The perfume could be called "Bella in a Bottle," "Stinky Swan," or "Rainbow Kitten Pudding Puppy." (The last name practically sells itself.)
Bella asks what happened to James, and Edward simply says Emmett and Jasper took care of him. You already know how I feel about being denied a cool vampire battle, so I won't get into it again. But, Stephenie Meyer, if I ever see you, you owe me a vampire battle. And it better be awesome. None of this "the true battle was within himself" crap.
According to Edward, after "taking care of" James in the ballet studio, Emmett and Jasper left Bella alone with Edward, Carlisle, and Alice because she was bleeding too much and Emmett and Jasper wouldn't be able to control themselves. Or they left because Bella, who can be annoying when healthy, is probably unbearable when she actually has something to cry about.
Bella then asks if Alice found out that James was (kind of) the reason she became a vampire, and Edward says that Alice understands. Huh? I'm convinced Alice's convoluted back story was thrown in at the last minute. It seems very tacked-on and random, as if the author promised a dying relative that in her first novel she would tangentially connect two background characters in a confusing way. If that's the case, job well done, Ms. Meyer.
Edward explains the lie he's been feeding her parents. The story goes that he came down to Phoenix to convince Bella to come back to Forks. Everyone believes that, but in the real world, Bella would be questioned by police and social workers, because "falling down the stairs" in the vicinity of a boyfriend you just broke up with is mighty suspicious.
Edward goes in for a kiss and Bella's heart rate monitor beeps frantically. And then the monitor stops beeping, as if Bella's heart had ceased pumping. This is very romantic and passionate, but unhealthy as well. To be safe, they should stick to Eskimo kisses, which instead of stopping her heart would probably just give Bella an upset tummy, heartburn, and an itchy nose.
Then Edward senses that Bella's mom, Renee, is coming to the room, and he pretends to nap in the nearby chair. Bella and her mom talk. It turns out that Phil got a job in Florida, and Bella's mom is anxious for Bella to move to Jacksonville. But there's no way that Bella will leave Forks. Why would she leave behind dreamy Edward and the impressively lax attendance policy at Forks High School?
Bella's mom thinks Edward is in love with Bella, and Bella says she's crazy about him. Then Renee leaves, but not before saying that the ballet studio had burned down. Edward perks back up and asks why Bella doesn't want to go to Florida. She says he can't go to Florida, because he would be stuck inside all day. (By the way, how is he chilling in the Phoenix hospital without sparkling up a storm? Eh, I don't even care anymore.)
Edward says he would stay in Forks, or someplace else far away from Bella, because being with her is too dangerous. There's some busy work with the nurse and pain medicine, and by the time the nurse is gone, Edward changes his mind and says he will never leave Bella. A lot of this conversation is hard to follow. This may have less to do with Meyer's inability to write straightforward dialogue, and more to do with the fact that I'm really close to finishing this book and am somewhat racing towards the end.
Bella asks why she can't become a vampire too, since it worked out for Alice. Edward gets angry, not at Bella, but at Alice for telling Bella about the powers of vamp venom. Bella doesn't want to always be the damsel in distress, and I can understand that. She wants to be just as powerful as Eddie. Of course, this is a slippery slope, because if she becomes a vamp, then Jessica will want to be transformed as well. And then Mike will want in on the vampire fun and the trend will spread faster than Ugg boots.
But Edward says he won't turn her into a vampire. He's worried she wouldn't be able to handle the pain. When she argues that she's a tough cookie, he asks what she would do about her parents. She doesn't care what her parents think.
Part of me thinks Edward isn't eager to transform Bella because if she was a vampire, who would he stare at during the night? Jessica? Eric? That girl whose name I thought was Peaches? Plus, he likes to be tough and strong, but if Bella were a vampire too, he would seem average. He would spend most of the time desperately trying to find new ways to one-up her, saying things such as, "So what if you can lift a car over your head. Can you play piano? I can! I can also give you a firsthand account of The Great Depression. Let's see you do that, Vampire-Bella! And I liked Radiohead way before everyone else did. So there!"
Edward still refuses to transform Bella, and she wonders what will happen when she gets old. Will he still love her? He says getting old is a part of life. It's natural to get old. Being a vampire is not natural. Because Edward is refusing to turn her into a vampire, she threatens to ask her new BFF Alice to do the honors.
This angers Edward. It seems that Alice has already seen a future in which Bella is a vampire. But Edward says that Alice can be wrong. They bicker a while longer. He says she needs to take some pain medicine, but she doesn't want any. He reassures her that he won't leave, and that she has nothing to fear.
This is frustrating because a few pages ago he told her that she had lots to fear because being with him puts her in danger. Now, under the same circumstances, she has nothing to fear. It's like telling someone, "Don't lick an electrical outlet because it's dangerous," and then moments later you say, "If you lick electrical outlets, you will have nothing to fear." So confusing.
The nurse comes in and gives Bella some medicine. She gets drowsy, and asks Edward to stay. He says he will, which is obvious, because where else would he go? Before passing out from the meds, Bella says she's sure that Alice was right, and one day she will become a vampire.
This ends the book, but there's an Epilogue. And then…acknowledgments, which is where I hope all the action and scares are hiding.
Edward finally agrees to turn Bella into a vampire, but Bella must understand that this counts as both her birthday and Christmas presents. Bella squeals with delight, but come Christmas morning, she's a little disappointed that she didn't get that heart-shaped necklace she was hinting about.