What this chapter should be called: Seth saves the day
Edward creep-o-meter: 3
This chapter pisses me off. More than normal, I mean. Mostly because Meyer spends most of her time painting darling Eddiekins as a big damn hero, while in fact, this book’s climax was made possible by a character who only became important last chapter.
That’s right, sparklemongers, Seth is totally the hero in this chapter.
And no one gives a damn.
But more on Super Seth later. Right now, Bella is in her sleeping bag, waiting for an avalanche or the newborns or something equally nasty to come and put her out of her misery. (+1 Angst) Out of nowhere, Sparklepeen pops up to stroke Bella’s hair and generally be useless.
“Are you all right?” he murmured, his voice anxious. “No. I want to die.” “That will never happen. I won’t allow it.” I groaned and then whispered, “You might change your mind about that.”
Eddie reads Seth’s mind, and Bella realizes that the whole pack now knows about the snogfest. Well, duh, Belly. How come you are always reminding us how cool Edward is, yet you constantly forget everything about werewolves? (+1 Stupidity)
Edward starts laughing because he really doesn’t care. Da fuq? What happened to the ultra-possessive Eddie from the beginning of the book? Where did he go? I don’t understand why these characters go through such abrupt changes in fundamental characteristics. It doesn’t make sense and keeps me from being able to identify with any of them. Also, this shit is giving me whiplash. I’m starting to think that next, Eric will peel off his face to reveal that he’s a Romulan princess or something. (+1 Stupidity) But, anyway, Edward says that the force-kiss wasn’t Bella’s fault, and that she’s “only human.”
“You’re only human,” he whispered, stroking my hair again. “That’s the most miserable defense I’ve ever heard.” “But you are human, Bella. And, as much as I might wish otherwise, so is he. . . . There are holes in your life that I can’t fill. I understand that.”
Well, that just solves everything, doesn’t it! Damn, girlie, what are you waiting for? Go give Jacob some Bella-style loving (oh ew ew ew why did I even think that she probably just lays there good god ew ew brain bleach now) since Edward really doesn’t mind! You’re only human, after all! This fixes everything!
But of course, this is Meyerland and nothing is that simple. Bella finally cottons on to the fact that Jacob was lying, and she is just shocked that someone would lie to get their way. Seeing as she does it all the time, I’m not sure why. (+1 Stupidity)
Bella can’t understand why Edward doesn’t hate her. He says it’s because he left her all sexually frustrated and holey, and Jacob filled those holes (snerk), it’s only right that she’s a little bit in love with him. Well, kudos to you, Steffie. I almost like Edward for this. He’s understanding his mistakes, and the consequences of them. (+1 Redemption)
“ But . . . when I left you, Bella, I left you bleeding. Jacob was the one to stitch you back up again. That was bound to leave its mark — on both of you. I’m not sure those kinds of stitches dissolve on their own. I can’t blame either of you for something I made necessary. I may gain forgiveness, but that doesn’t let me escape the consequences.”
And now, ladies and gents, I’d like to ask you to buckle your lap belts and pull down on the safety harness, being sure to keep hands and feet inside the car at all times as we embark on the roller coaster that is Bella’s emotions. First, she starts yelling at Edward. Bella wants to be scolded. She wants him to flip out and push her down the stairs because he loves her. But, he doesn’t. I can’t say I’m exactly surprised. Edward doesn’t know how to yell, only growl and murmur and glower.
“I can be noble, Bella. I’m not going to make you choose between us. Just be happy, and you can have whatever part of me you want, or none at all, if that’s better. Don’t let any debt you feel you owe me influence your decision.”
Wow. This is probably the nicest, non-creepy thing I’ve ever heard Edward say. It’s simple, sincere, and it works. A cookie to you, Stephenie. (+1 Redemption) Moving on. Bella pounces on the moment and turns in to a sex fiend.
“Dammit, stop that!” I shouted at him. His eyes widened in surprise. “No — you don’t understand. I’m not just trying to make you feel better, Bella, I really mean it.” “I know you do,” I groaned. “What happened to fighting back? Don’t start with the noble self-sacrifice now! Fight!” “How?” he asked, and his eyes were ancient with their sadness. I scrambled into his lap, throwing my arms around him. “I don’t care that it’s cold here. I don’t care that I stink like a dog right now. Make me forget how awful I am. Make me forget him. Make me forget my own name. Fight back!”
Gasp! Bella can swear?!? But, make me forget my own name? There is a list of things people have never said before sex, and I’m pretty sure that one is up there. Right along with, “the ambulance is on it’s way” and, “hold my beer and watch this.” (+1 Stupidity)
“I wrapped my arms around his neck and strained to reach his lips. He bent his head to kiss me back, but his cool mouth was hesitant as my impatience grew more pronounced. My body was making my intentions clear, giving me away.”
Smella kisses Eddie passionately, obviously wanting to do quite a bit more than kiss. But Edward, being made of marble and starchy moral fiber, resists, saying that as there is about to be a battle going on, now is probably not the best time for special hugs. And, making her forget her own name would be awfully noisy, and Seth doesn’t want to hear any of that shit.
Bella then reverts back to her normal, sad-sack self. What? Three sentences ago, Bella was practically ripping Edward’s clothes off in a hormone-induced frenzy, and now she’s moping? Jesus. Bella is like a dog that can’t decide whether to chase a ball, sniff a tree, or have sex with Edward. (+1 Stupidity)
Eventually, we are reminded of the turf war going on when Seth howls. He’s got his grumpy pants on because he has to stay with stupid Bella instead of being useful.
“Seth started to whimper. “What’s wrong?” I demanded. “He’s just angry that he’s stuck here with us. He knows the pack kept him out of the action to protect him. He’s salivating to join them.” I scowled in Seth’s general direction.”
Oh, so now you’re giving Seth the stink eye? Um, why, exactly? He’s protecting your mopey ass. How about you say, “thanks, Seth, for staying here and keeping me safe” instead? Little bitch. (+1 Bitch)
Can I just take a moment and ask you guys something? What does Jacob like about Bella? She must have a seriously nice ass or something, because it sure as hell isn’t her personality. Ugh, whatever. Edward starts reading someone’s mind and narrating the fight for us.
“Sam’s taking us around to head off the ambush party.” He was so intent on what he was hearing that he used the pack plural.”
Wait, you mean that instead of watching Emmett karate-chop newborns, I get to listen to Edward narrate it? Come on, Meyer! Have you not learned anything? If I wanted to hear a story about a battle, I’d go ask my grandpa about Vietnam. At least he’d be kind enough to offer me a warm Pepsi and some nicotine gum. (+1 Stupidity)
Anyhoo, Edward continues to tell us all about the fight. Leah is fast, Emmett is awesome, and Paul and Jacob are kicking ass. Cool beans. Suddenly, Edward freezes up, which makes Bella panic, thinking someone has kicked the bucket.
“Oh, no. No. No. Who had been lost? Theirs or ours? Mine, all mine. What was my loss?”
This is why I hate Bella. Yes, the loss of any character taking place in the clearing brawl may affect her, but to assume possessiveness over all of them is another thing. If Jacob died, Bella would probably have a couple new holes in her torso, yes, but what makes her assume that she’ll be hurting any more than say, Jacob’s father? God. Not everything is about you, Bella. (+1 Bitch)
Suddenly, Edward is ripping their way out of the side of the tent (doors are fucking cool, too, bro) and yelling at Seth to go. Hmmn. So, either something has gone awry, and Edward is a major dick for keeping Bella in the dark (+1 Red Flag), or it’s sexytimes and Edward wants some privacy. Edward spins Bella around so that her back is against a rock face, while he assumes a defensive position, with his back to her. (Sounds spicy.)
“Victoria,” he said, spitting the word, making it a curse. “She’s not alone. She crossed my scent, following the newborns in to watch — she never meant to fight with them. She made a spur-of-the-moment decision to find me, guessing that you would be wherever I was. She was right. You were right. It was always Victoria.”
Any meatsack with some grey matter figured out that it was Victoria ten chapters ago. Please, Meyer, once the mystery is obviously solvable, stop dragging it out. We would all appreciate this.
And, better observation: how the holy hell did Alice not see this happening? Shouldn’t she have seen Victoria decide to come to Forks? Better yet, shouldn’t she have seen the newborns decide to follow Vickie’s orders? I would ask for an explanation, but that would probably make me want to go to my bookstore and glue every copy of this book shut so no one ever has to deal with the nonsense that is Alice Cullen’s powers. (+1 Stupidity)
“Two vampires edged slowly into the small opening of our camp, eyes intent, missing nothing. They glistened like diamonds in the sun.”
Vickie and her second in command edge towards Eddie and Bella, in this menacing, cooler-than-you attitude that all vampires seem to have. Why don’t any vamps just skip out in jean shorts and AC/DC tee shirts? I want a vampire with frizzy hair and freckles who thinks Firefly was totally rad. I’m starting to think that the transformation into a vampire leaves you devoid of all personality whatsoever. (+1 Stupidity)
Bella stares at the two approaching vamps, realizing that the blond kid Victoria has with her will keep Edward distracted while Victoria kills Bella. I would ask why Victoria is so hell-bent on killing Bella to hurt Edward, because she really has no reason to do so, but that explanation would make me grind my teeth so hard my eyes bleed. (+1 Stupidity) Bella only has eyes for Victoria, who has a whole paragraph wasted on her physical description, which is in no way necessary. (+1 Thesaurus Rape) After that, the fight begins in the way all Meyerland fights begin: with some useless posturing and verbal taunts.
“She’s lying to you, Riley,” Edward told him. “Listen to me. She’s lying to you just like she lied to the others who are dying now in the clearing. You know that she’s lied to them, that she had you lie to them, that neither of you were ever going to help them. Is it so hard to believe that she’s lied to you, too?” Confusion swept across Riley’s face.
Edward shifted a few inches to the side, and Riley automatically compensated with an adjustment of his own. “She doesn’t love you, Riley.”
Oh, so that’s how Victoria’s been getting all her dirty deeds done, by seducing one of her playthings? Lord forbid a woman actually be cunning or manipulative. We’ll just have her seduce someone and call it a day. Gah. Just once, can I see a woman in this book get something done without resorting to her feminine wiles? (+1 Stupidity)
After some more taunting, Victoria finally gets *gasp* her very own speaking line.
“He’s the liar, Riley,” Victoria said, and my mouth fell open in shock at the sound of her voice. “I told you about their mind tricks. You know I love only you.” Her voice was not the strong, wild, catlike growl I would have put with her face and stance. It was soft, it was high — a babyish, soprano tinkling.”
This seems to make up Riley’s mind, and he gets ready to lunge. And then, as all hope seems lost for Bella, Seth returns and launches himself into Riley.Yeah! Four for you, Seth Clearwater! You go, Seth Clearwater! (And none for Edward Cullen.) So, Seth flies into Riley, and, I kid you not, rips off his freaking arm. It’s easily the best scene in the entire saga so far. Riley throws Seth back into a tree, and that gives us time to refocus on Edward and Victoria. Boo!
“Only a few yards away from that fight, Edward and Victoria were dancing. Not quite circling, because Edward was not allowing her to position herself closer to me. She sashayed back, moving from side to side, trying to find a hole in his defense. He shadowed her footwork lithely, stalking her with perfect concentration. He began to move just a fraction of a second before she moved, reading her intentions in her thoughts.”
Oh. Okay. So, this is going to mostly be a bunch of wordy fanservice for the sole purpose of reminding us how awesome Edward is. Alrighty. (+1 Thesaurus Rape) Eddie and Vickie keep moving too fast for Bella to tell what’s going on. I feel like Meyer does this a lot; playing up Bella’s “human” weaknesses to avoid actually showing us anything. While admittedly, this is the best fight scene I’ve read so far, with characters flying into trees and arms getting ripped off, it’s still not written in a way that’s easy to picture. Meyer is an amateur, and she just doesn’t have the skill required yet. It has the potential to be totally kickass, but sadly, in the Twilightverse that translates into melodramatic and laughingly non-violent. (+1 Stupidity)
Bella notes that Riley is really getting his ass handed to him, before going back to Eddiekins. What? No! I want to see what part of Riley gets torn off next, not some dumb dance-fighting and taunts!
Heh. Dance-fighting. How awesome would it have been if Victoria had shown up, plopped down a boom box, and started getting down, while Riley screamed, “you got served!” I would have read the fuck out of that.
Edward taunts Victoria some more, while Seth chomps another hunk of vampire meat off Riley. Riley then backhands Seth into the rock face so hard it causes jagged bits of rock to rain down on Bella. Oh noes.
Speaking of which, why is Bella just standing there, making herself an easy target? You would think she would be getting out of the way, or climbing a tree, or something. (+1 Stupidity) Also, I just realized I haven’t brought this up yet: why has Victoria not harnessed the conveniences of the modern world in her quest for Bella? Couldn’t she have, like, hacked Bella’s Twitter account or something? Or snatched Bella as she was leaving the rez, or coming out of Angela’s house? Fuck, she could have just sat up in a tree with a high caliber sniper rifle and picked Bella off within 24 hours. The more I think about it, the more useless and unnecessary this whole “army” thing is. Victoria is just making things more difficult for herself. (+1 Stupidity)
But whatever. Fuck logic. Bella is stuck in a rock hailstorm (which sounds a lot cooler than it actually is) and catches a piece of rock as it falls.
“Sharp fragments of gray stone showered down on my head, scratching my exposed skin. A jagged spike of rock rolled down my right arm and I caught it reflexively.”
Yes, folks. Clumsy, coordinately-challenged, klutzy Bella, who can’t hit a volleyball to save her life, manages to catch a spike of rock in midair. Guess I missed the chapter titled: Bella Is Secretly A Jedi. (+1 Stupidity) Wielding the rock like a dagger, Bella decides that the sensible thing to do would be to sacrifice herself so that everyone else can live.
“Was I strong enough? Was I brave enough? How hard could I shove the rough stone into my body? Would this buy Seth enough time to get back on his feet? Would he heal fast enough for my sacrifice to do him any good? I raked the point of the shard up my arm, yanking my thick sweater back to expose the skin, and then pressed the sharp tip to the crease at my elbow. I already had a long scar there from my last birthday. That night, my flowing blood had been enough to catch every vampire’s attention, to freeze them all in place for an instant. I prayed it would work that way again.”
Uh, who is Bella sacrificing herself in order to save? We know that if she dies, Edward is going to kill himself, therefore rendering the initial sacrifice pointless. I really don’t think this would work. You guys already know that I have some problems with the Third Wife story, mainly because there was no need for the wife to kill herself, or even cut herself badly. We already know that a simple paper cut does the trick. Bella doesn’t need to be so gosh darn dramatic. Just prick your finger, silly rabbit. (+1 Stupidity)
So, Bella prepares to kill herself, sucking in one huge gasp before doing the deed. And, even I could not make this up, this is what distracts Victoria long enough for Edward to gain the upper hand.
“Victoria was distracted by the sound of my gasp. Her eyes, holding still for one tiny portion of a second, met mine. Fury and curiosity mingled strangely in her expression. I wasn’t sure how I heard the low sound with all the other noises echoing off the stone wall and hammering inside my head. My own heartbeat should have been enough to drown it out. But, in the split second that I stared into Victoria’s eyes, I thought I heard a familiar, exasperated sigh.”
So what, Bella has some sort of super gasping power?!? A gasp is really all it took to distract Vickie? How would she have known it was any different from a normal breath? Have I been underestimating the power of gasps my entire life? Or is this just a really shitty climax? I mean, like if all Frodo had to do was gasp at the ring to destroy it? Or if John McClane could have beaten the terrorists by gasping a couple times? What if the Death Star could have been destroyed with a gasp?
Sweet Jesus, I hate this book. (+1 Stupidity)
Edward uses this distraction to…okay, I’m sorry, this is incredibly hard to follow. I think what happens is Edward kicks Victoria’s ass into a tree, and then goes and does…something to Riley. Not exactly sure what. Again, this is really frakkin’ hard to follow. Somehow, Riley loses an arm, and said detached arm continues to flop around on the forest floor. Awesome. Seth gets back in the game, and Eddie chucks Riley’s arm at Victoria. Cool!
“Something small and white whistled through the air and collided with her mid-flight. The impact sounded like an explosion, and it threw her against another tree — this one snapped in half. She landed on her feet again, crouched and ready, but Edward was already in place. Relief swelled in my heart when I saw that he stood straight and perfect.”
Seth goes in for the kill, and Edward clearly has Victoria on the ropes. Seth starts to shred Riley. Do you see why I’m rooting for Seth so much? Seth is not a professional vampire slayer. He wasn’t even around when Laurent was killed. He’s never fought a vampire until now; plus newborn vampires are wilder and nastier than regular vampires. He’s young and relatively untested. And yet, he’s tearing through Riley like a goddamn bucket of KFC. Seth’s actions are far more momentous and heroic than Eddiekin’s. Sadly, they will probably never be mentioned again.
Whatever. I don’t care. While Seth is off being awesome, Edward up and beheads Victoria. No shit.
“And then the fiery tangle of hair was no longer connected to the rest of her body. The shivering orange waves fell to the ground, and bounced once before rolling toward the trees.”
What? I thought the whole reason we hadn’t caught Victoria yet was because she was a marathon runner and a good swimmer or something. And now, Edward can just stroll over and decapitate her? (+1 Stupidity)
Fine, okay, I admit: I’m just bitter because I wanted Victoria to kill Edward. That would have been perfect.
Thesaurus Rape: +2
Red Flag: Sparklepeen + 1
Thesaurus Rape: +47
Eye Rape: +5
Cream Count: +11
Red Flag: Sparklepeen +79 Wolfballs +15