What this chapter should be called: Something is wrong with your damn kid
Fucks I give: Potato
Let’s get this over with.
“I took mythology a lot more seriously since I’d become a vampire. Often, when I looked back over my first three months as an immortal, I imagined how the thread of my life might look in the Fates’ loom—who knew but that it actually existed?”
Bella waxes on about what her family would look like as threads. She and the other sparklepires would be reds and golds, while the werewolves would be warm, earthy tones. Why we care about this, I have no idea. Most likely because Meyer assumes we’ve just been sucked into the Bella-Vortex.
Speaking of the Bella-Vortex, both Sue and Leah Clearwater have been sucked into it as of late, befriending Chuck in order to smooth his transition in to the supernatural. Oh, and Bella says that the main pattern in her life tapestry is “happiness.” Gag.
But the important part of this chapter is that we have now fast-forwarded three months, but for some reason, we’re getting an overly-detailed recap on everything. Jacob and his pack have stuck around, much to Leah’s displeasure. Jasper still hovers over Bella because he’s jealous of her sweet superpower of not eating people. This annoys the shit out of Bella (almost as much as her being “alive” annoys everybody who reads this series). Renesmee has also grown quite significantly.
“Renesmee spoke her first word when she was exactly one week old. The word was Momma, which would have made my day, except that I was so frightened by her progress I could barely force my frozen face to smile back at her.”
Renesmee’s first word is quickly followed by her first sentence, which was sadly not, “where is Chuck and his sweet-ass mustache?” Bella finds it surprising that Renesmee bothered to talk at all, considering her preferred method of communication is to slap people in the face and beam mind-thoughts to them. Though how that would ever be easier and more convenient than talking, I’m not sure. (+1 Stupidity)
Waitress: Hi, I’m Kathy, and I’ll be your server tonight. Can I start you off with any drinks?
Renesmee: *slaps Kathy in the face*
Waitress: Ouch! That really hurt! Also, I inexplicably know that you really want a root beer.
Renesmee takes her first steps three weeks later.
“When she walked for the first time, fewer than three weeks later, it was similar. She’d simply stared at Alice for a long moment, watching intently as her aunt arranged bouquets in the vases scattered around the room, dancing back and forth across the floor with her arms full of flowers. Renesmee got to her feet, not in the least bit shaky, and crossed the floor almost as gracefully.”
Point: Renesmee grows hella fast.
“At three months, Renesmee could have been a big one-year-old, or a small two year- old. She wasn’t shaped exactly like a toddler; she was leaner and more graceful, her proportions were more even, like an adult’s. Her bronze ringlets hung to her waist; I couldn’t bear to cut them, even if Alice would have allowed it. Renesmee could speak with flawless grammar and articulation, but she rarely bothered, preferring to simply show people what she wanted. She could not only walk but run and dance. She could even read.”
So apparently, Renesmee is already hitting puberty at the tender age of one month. Awesome. Of course, there’s no drawbacks from this rapid mental and physical development, because that would be a chore to write. (+1 Cream Count) Renesmee speaks like a scholar and can probably translate ancient Latin texts while simultaneously performing ballet.
Renesmee is incredibly sophisticated (duh) and prefers Tennyson to picture books. Yeah. See, Meyer, the problem is, intelligence and emotional maturity do not always correlate. Renesmee is still emotionally an infant, even though her intelligence is far ahead of her. There is no way that she would be preferring complicated, intricate works over the Magic Treehouse series. It doesn’t work that way. (+1 Stupidity)
On the same note, let’s talk about this whole “rapid growth” thing: Bella keeps explaining how Renesmee’s mind keeps growing insanely fast while her body lags behind a bit. She points out that in four years, her daughter will be full grown, and by 15, she will be an old woman. But this makes no sense as she’s also half vampire — right? She has special powers and likes to bite stuff, yet Meyer never exactly explains what characteristics are vampire and which ones are human. Fail. (+1 Stupidity)
But, whatever. Everything is smooth sailing for Bella, until the Volturi suddenly decide they’re interested in her again.
“Until the day that Aro’s present showed up, I didn’t know that Alice had sent a wedding announcement to the Volturi leaders; we’d been far away on Esme’s island when she’d seen a vision of Volturi soldiers—Jane and Alec, the devastatingly powerful twins, among them. Caius was planning to send a hunting party to see if I was still human, against their edict (because I knew about the secret vampire world, I either must join it or be silenced… permanently). So Alice had mailed the announcement, seeing that this would delay them as they deciphered the meaning behind it. But they would come eventually. That was certain.”
As Bella’s life crashes around her (yes, the transition was that sudden), several hard decisions must be made. Carlisle and Edward want to go to Brazil and check out some myths about half-vampire children. Problem is, the Volturi are hinting that they might be dropping by for a visit soon, and they can’t know about Renesmee because… reasons. So it’s decided that Bella will have to make the trip to Italy solo to meet Aro and the gang. Because she’s more perfect than a sunrise made of mermaids, Aro can’t read her thoughts and therefore won’t know that Renesmee exists.
Now that I’ve got that out of the way, let’s talk about some ridiculous shit that I see going on.
“Carlisle and Edward had exhausted the research they could do from a distance, and now we were preparing to follow old legends at their source. We were going back to Brazil, starting there. The Ticunas had legends about children like Renesmee.… ”
1. Gee, really? How freaking convenient. Why in the name of Our Dark Lord Cthulu didn’t Carlisle do some of this investigative work months ago, while Bella was pregnant?? Or couldn’t the other vampires have done some of this legwork? Surely there was some time for research during the past three months while Esme was busying watching TV, Jasper was busy counting ceiling cracks, Alice was busy thinking about trees, Rosalie was busy looking at her own fingers, and Emmett was busy building a rifle that uses bullets made of pure terror. (+1 Stupidity)
2. So, if we’re accepting the fact that Carlisle has helpful Amazonian vampire friends that haven’t been mentioned until now because reasons, where is this little jaunt to South America gonna lead? Are they just gonna go down there and come back with some random-ass half-vampire named Juan who reveals that the secret to halting half-vampire growth is to tap on their bellybuttons five times while chanting the first verse of a Beastie Boys song? I literally have no idea what Carlizzle is expecting to get out of this trip. Is there some sort of “Vampire/Human Hybrids for Dummies” book that is only located in a secret library deep within the Amazon? Couldn’t he just make a few phone calls? Or send Esme? Oh, right, Esme is busy pondering the color yellow all month. She’s ever so helpful. (+1 Stupidity)
3. WHY THE HELL DID NO ONE THINK TO DO THIS SOONER????
Bella: My baby is growing super fast. Do you think maybe we should try to find out what’s going on?
Carlisle: Eh. I wouldn’t worry about it. She’s growing so fast that she’s probably going to die by the end of the week. I hope you didn’t name her. You don’t want to grow too attached.
Bella: What? Why don’t we try to help her??
Carlisle: I have friends in the Amazon who know exactly what to do, but…
Bella: But what!?
Carlisle: If we get down there and the baby is already dead, then it’s, like, a wasted trip. See what I mean? We should just wait this out. I’ve already made a casket out of some old luggage, just in case.
Bella: My baby is going to die and you’re not going to do anything?
Carlisle: Ugh. Fine. Whatever. Maybe I can go to the Amazon in a few months.
Bella: We should go now! Before it’s too late!
Carlisle: Ooh, sorry, no can do. See, Esme is busy playing online checkers, and Jasper was planning to decorate his sneakers with a Sharpie. That’ll take a few months.
Bella: I don’t believe this.
Carlisle: Maybe in the spring we’ll go to South America, if the baby isn’t dead yet. If it is dead, then we go to Disney Land. Deal?
“I always wondered where the crown jewels disappeared to after John of England pawned them in the thirteenth century,” Carlisle said. “I suppose it doesn’t surprise me that the Volturi have their share.” The necklace was simple—gold woven into a thick rope of a chain, almost scaled, like a smooth snake that would curl close around the throat. One jewel hung suspended from the rope: a white diamond the size of a golf ball.”
Yeah, Aro didn’t just strut down to Target and pick up a waffle iron like a normal person. Bella is so special and magnificent that she deserves the freaking lost crown jewels of England. Uh huh. That high-pitched buzzing sound you’re hearing is me credibility sensors being pushed to the max. (+1 Stupidity) But, moving on. The point is that the Volturi clearly hasn’t forgotten about Eddie and his tasty-smelling human.
Timeskip ahead a few weeks. Jacob, Renesmee, and Bella are all out hunting together.
“The three of us, Jacob, Renesmee, and I, were hunting together. The diet of animal blood wasn’t Renesmee’s favorite thing—and that was why Jacob was allowed to come along. Jacob had made it a contest between them, and that made her more willing than anything else.”
This is going to be their last hunting trip before Bella goes to Europe. Jacob and Bella are having a little tiff over Jacob’s schooling – he’s all but dropped out of high school to spend time with Renesmee, because healthy relationships don’t exist in Meyerland. (+1 Stupidity) The topic is suddenly forgotten because OMG snowflakes!
“I lost my concentration on my side of the disagreement when he said that, and we both automatically looked at Renesmee. She was staring at the snowflakes fluttering high above her head, melting before they could stick to the yellowed grass in the long arrowhead-shaped meadow that we were standing in. Her ruffled ivory dress was just a shade darker than the snow, and her reddish-brown curls managed to shimmer, though the sun was buried deeply behind the clouds.”
Renesmee is just the most precious thing ever. Gack. (+1 Cream Count) She then leaps 15 feet in the air from a complete standstill and brings down with her an eight-pointed snowflake. Normally, right here is where I would tear into Meyer for not knowing basic principles of momentum and being generally incapable of using Google to find that hey, all snowflakes have either 3, 6, or 12 sides, but there’s a point in this book where you just don’t care anymore. (+2 Stupidity) (And, hint: I passed it eight chapters ago.)
Jacob and Renesmee tear off to go kill some deer, while Bella lags behind. Suddenly, her super sparkle senses kick in. Bella looks around and – hey, up on that ridge! It’s Irina!
You guys remember Irina, right? Of course you don’t. Meyer has an unfortunate habit of introducing a character with a single sentence, and then expecting the reader to remember that sentence 28 books later. Irina is a good vampire who lives with Tanya’s coven up in Alaska. Irina and Laurent dated for a while, but then he came to Forks and the werewolves turned him into a Happy Meal. Irina is pissed at the Cullens because the werewolves killed Laurent, and then the Cullens teamed up with the werewolves to fight the newborn vampires in the last book. (It all sounds more exciting and involved when I summarize it.) She’s here because Alice had a vision a couple days ago of her coming down to make up with the Cullens.
“[Irina’s] gaze cut slightly to the right, and I knew what she was seeing. An enormous russet werewolf, perhaps the very one who had killed her Laurent. How long had she been watching us? Long enough to see our affectionate exchange before, I was sure. Her face spasmed in pain.”
Irina takes off down the mountainside with her grumpy pants on. Bella calls up Edward and the rest of the clan to let them know the sitch. They take off after Irina and Bella hopes nobody’s feelings were hurt.
And I am still waiting for the plot.
Cream Count: +2
Thesaurus Rape: +29
Cream Count: +16
Eye Rape: +1
Red Flag: Edward: +12 Jacob: +8