Picking up where we left off, Edward Cullen had just pulled off what I think was one of the most monumentally stupid things in the history of things Creatures In Hiding do to get themselves noticed by the main characters—he jumped in front of an out-of-control van and absorbed the impact just to save Bella’s life. Fortunately for him, a) nobody noticed because they were all too busy being worried about Bella—and I do mean all (screw the guy who actually got seriously hurt), b) it was heroic, and therefore completely forgivable, c) he was doing it to save the leading lady’s life, so again, completely forgivable, and d) he looked awesome while doing it. So, Bella’s suspicious, Edward’s a condescending asshole, and everybody loves Bella, especially the boys, since they are all fighting for her hand
With all that in mind, we plow ahead!
Chapter 5 – Blood Type
--I’m actually shocked that the author had somebody speak in a disparaging tone to
--She is so completely unaware of the people around her—meaning she is so wrapped up in herself—that she doesn’t notice when the person who has been sitting by her and always making a note to talk to her is somewhere else for a change. Again, Meyer—I’m supposed to like this person WHY? I mean, if you were attempting to write an anti-hero, you’d be doing a half-decent job.
--Okay—the beach trip seriously confuses me. It’s probably going to be raining, and it’s only going to be forty degrees. But they’re all going to the beach? Why?
--Your immediately going into an absolute tailspin and sulk the instant you don’t see Edward really pisses me off. I mean, you hardly know him, and according to you, he’s been nothing but cold and indifferent to you. And yet, if you don’t see him, you don’t sleep, you don’t eat, you’re constantly depressed—this is not healthy.
--Your “abstraction”? WTF? How does “abstraction” describe your mood in the slightest?
--Oh, there he is. I have another question, Ms. Meyer. It’s obvious that the Cullens in this high school stick together and don’t talk to anybody else (well, I assume this—all we’ve heard about is Edward, and we’ve never seen him interact with anybody else except Bella). Aren’t they supposed to be, you know, blending in? Because they aren’t doing a good job. And I just remembered something that I forgot to bring up before. The people of this town talk behind the Cullens’ backs that they all “live together” with Dr. Cullen. Um…aren’t the four vampire kids supposed to be Dr. Cullen’s kids, adopted or otherwise? Or did I just miss something entirely?
--“Insulting astonishment”? Why the hell would Jessica be astonished that Edward would want to talk to Bella of all people? I can understand her being shocked that Edward would want to talk to somebody at all, given that he’s rather withdrawn, but a) he’s been seen talking to her for over a month now, and b) Bella is apparently the most popular girl in school and everybody wants to talk to her and be her friend.
--There he goes again. Not two pages ago, he said, “Avoid me.” And now, two pages later, “Come sit with me.” This is getting quite annoying. And I’d be willing to bet good money that he’s gonna say Bella should avoid him in the near future, directly followed by him asking her to be with him.
--Only the most shallow of people could be so wowed by somebody’s supposed beauty that they automatically do whatever that person says to do and somehow manages to ignore Edward’s entire personality revealed thus far. I mean, come on—as hot as I find Sean Bean, I acknowledge that I wouldn’t like him in real life, because I’ve heard more than one story about him and his many wives. I mean, wasn’t he recently thrown in jail for abusing one? But no, not Bella Swan! But a few hours after Edward is a condescending “I am so much better than you” bitch to her, what are her thoughts? “It was hard to believe that someone so beautiful could be real. I was afraid that he might disappear in a sudden puff of smoke, and I would wake up.”
--Only the most arrogant of people are smug and amused when somebody is so wowed by them that they are reduced to gibberish the instant they see them, and I’m not talking about a celebrity who’s got fans. I’m referring to somebody who knows a girl finds him very, very attractive and gets tongue-tied in his presence. And Edward is smug and amused by Bella obviously fancying him. Not that I have any sympathy whatsoever for Bella, but the point is, Edward is a creep. Remember that person I mentioned who’d gotten tongue-tied and fumble-fingered when a seriously hot dude wandered into her workplace? He wasn’t smug about it at all. As a matter of fact, he found it a little off-putting (granted, my friend’s job at the time had been drawing blood, and he made her so woozy she pulled the needle out wrong and squirted blood everywhere, but you get my point).
--This dialogue is utterly atrocious. Meyer, there are ways of trying to establish “mystery” about a character. This is not the appropriate way, especially when you consider that most of the people who pick up your book and start reading it are going to know beforehand that Edward is a vampire. They’re going to know exactly what he’s talking about, and they are going to wonder just why the hell he isn’t trying to do a better job of hiding what he is.
--Your stomach is trembling? Man, when mine does that, it usually means I’m about to vomit all over the place.
--*sigh* And there it was—both in rapid succession, too. “I can’t stay away from you. Do stay way from me, though—but I’m gonna keep harassing you, just to make staying away from me harder, because I’m having fun.” Well, the audience isn’t having fun!
--Edward, it is painfully obvious that you are fishing to find out if Bella knows your secret. You’re supposed to be an old vampire—you should be more experienced than this.
--“I had been vacillating during the last month between Bruce Wayne and Peter Parker.” Aside from the obviously Thesaurus Syndrome—who the hell talks like that in high school?—I can see how that would be humorous. However, it had a rather negative affect on me—as in, I wanted to put this down again and go read about Batman or Spiderman. Or maybe just watch The Dark Knight.
--“'No,' I disagreed quickly, my eyes narrowing, 'I can't imagine why that would be frustrating at all — just because someone refuses to tell you what they're thinking, even if all the while they're making cryptic little remarks specifically designed to keep you up at night wondering what they could possibly mean…now, why would that be frustrating?'”
Edward smiled charmingly. “Perhaps if you didn’t obsess over every little thing I said and developed a little something called a ‘life’, you wouldn’t be up at night, now, would you?”
Yes, THAT is how it should’ve gone.
--“"I don't like double standards."” That’s really funny, Bella. That’s really funny.
--For crying out loud, have her “friends” done nothing but think about her since she left? Do their lives have no purpose without her? Oh, who am I kidding—no, they don’t have a purpose without her. Absolutely NONE. It’s vile. This has moved straight into Airhead territory, it has. In those stories, Harry, Ron, and Hermione meet Ariana Black in their fifth year. Now, they’ve had lives for the previous four years, have they not? They have other friends, they know other people, they have other things to worry about. But once Ariana shows up, that’s all they care about, that’s all they talk about. The new girl. And these characters are no different. The main difference being that Ariana’s creator was a seventeen-year-old writer of fanfiction. This is a published work. You shouldn’t be able to get away with this.
--Okay, I get it, Edward can’t read Bella and it pisses him off. And know exactly why you emphasize this all the time—because it makes Bella speshuler than everyone else.
--Once again, emphasis on the fact that Edward doesn’t eat. Oh, and why did they all get lunches the first time Bella ever saw them, but now they don’t? Did they get one just for her benefit?
--“I looked at the lemonade bottle as I spoke, tracing the circle of the opening with my pinkie finger.” Well, that was pointless.
--The whole “tell me a theory” made me laugh—and not in the way she wanted me to. From repetition (called his eyes ocher up there, honey) to the “smoldering gaze” I’ve seen in countless harlequin romance novels/fics to Bella being completely bowled over by Edward’s beauty (one could argue it’s vampire hypnotism, but she’s thus far been completely unaffected by it)…that’s hellamusing.
--Edward, aren’t you supposed to be, you know…hiding? You’re not supposed to want people to know you’re a vampire. And yet, you are making it quite clear to Bella that you are basically inhuman in some way.
--It’s…Eddie Dangerous! The new hit series! *rolls eyes*
--Excuse me, but this is high school, not college. You don’t just skip class and get away with it scot-free.
--People are actually in awe when somebody gets to talk to Edward the Almighty? For crying out loud…
--HOLD. THE. PHONE. Uh, excuse me, but this is the age of blood-born pathogens, not to mention immature idiots. So Mr. Banner is giving these people needles and having them put drops of blood on the card? Pardon me if I call this into question—is this still even ALLOWED? This was published in 2005. Please correct me if I’m wrong, readers. And maybe it’s just me when it comes to passing out sharp objects to a class—I mean, I was in AP Calculus in my Senior year, a class supposed to be filled with kids who are halfway intelligent, and I had some classmates who not only had a “Staple Your Pants to Your Leg” contest to see who could take the most staples, but also found an old piece of a rose bush and started flagellating each other with it.
--Hey, check it out, Guardian’s Song! It’s Airhead again! Taking a perfectly normal and quite common fear—the fear of blood, in this case—and exaggerating it to the point of ridiculousness! By the way, Ms. Meyer, you can stop beating me over the head with your supposed irony now. I have a headache.
--It’s the Ever-Present Edward again. Normally, when one skips class, he does it in a way that he won’t be caught—typically, hanging around the school is not a good way to avoid being caught.
--Mike reminds me of the South Park episode where Bebe starts developing breasts and all the boys immediately turn into cavemen.
--“Ho ho, I am Edward and I am mysteriously amused by the way Bella faints at the sight of blood.” *groans* Stop it, Meyer.
--This is exciting Edward? The idea of Bella being passed out and helpless is actively exciting him? Okay, I know he’s a vampire, but that’s just freaky.
--You know what? I believe Meyer has just pointed out something that could’ve been a legitimate exploration of a young vampire with power over every human he encounters. Young vampires would, in fact, use hypnotism and the like to overpower people just for the hell of it, like Edward just did with the nurse, because, as “The Twilight Zone” proved, young people with super powers is a very bad combo. But, once again, an interesting idea is completely blown off in favor of a sweeping romance.
--“"You were right," I moaned, letting my eyes close.
"I usually am — but about what in particular this time?"” If Edward weren’t such a smug prick, that might actually be funny. As such, it’s just annoying.
--“Seeeeeeee? Bella and Edward were DESTINED to be together, because she can smell blood!” And Edward, stop dropping very large and obvious hints that you are not human.
--“Fainting spells always exhausted me.” So, this happens often, then?
--“His voice was like melting honey.” How on earth does an already liquid material melt?
--I seriously prefer the way Alucard does the hypnotism thing to people. It’s so much more awesome. And I would totally not mind being on the receiving end of his sex beam. Heh.
--Oh, you just invited him to the beach. You’re in no position to invite anybody—it’s not your party, jerk, not to mention that Mike, the guy actually throwing the party, actively dislikes Edward.
--Bella, if you want me to have any sympathy at all for you over Mike constantly trying to get you to be his girlfriend, you’d better stop constantly thinking of yourself with Edward.
--Oh yes, make Alice take the truck back. I mean, she probably doesn’t have anything better to do—now that Bella’s here, the whole world revolves around her. Alice will probably be honored to be able to serve Bella in some way.
--*stares* Edward, the correct way people get unsuspecting people into their cars is with candy. Not by forcibly bullying them into the white van. You need to work on your subtlety.
--“I know classical music. That makes me unique and special.” No, it does not. I like classical music. A lot of people like classical music—a lot of young people. So shut up. And no, it is not convincing me that you two are destined to be together. If one song meant that two people were destined to be together, I’m pretty sure I could lay claim to at least one of my current lust objects in a hurry.
--The whole speech about how much more awesome Bella’s mom is than Bella is just setting up the classic moment where somebody tells Bella how awesome she is. I can see it coming from a mile away. Oh, and that whole “best friend” statement? Bella, you have no friends. I’ve seen no evidence of you being friendly towards anybody thus far.
--You are totally right, Edward. She doesn’t seem seventeen. She seems, oh, three. Oh, and by the way, I am very impressed, Meyer. It took you over ninety pages to finally say how old Bella was.
--It’s sad. I now already hate Bella so much that my mind is filling in the blanks. She can’t understand the attraction her mother has for her stepfather. My immediate reaction? “Why? ‘Cause he isn’t pretty?”
--Okay, stop. You two are (ostensibly) seventeen-year-old high school students who barely know each other and you are already having a talk about MARRIAGE? And Edward? Why don’t you just say it already? You might as well. You’ve dropped enough hints that anybody who reads this series that DOESN’T know your BIG SECRET has probably already guessed it, so you may as well just flat out say, “Bella, I’m a vampire.”
--Is it wrong that when I read the sentence with Bella asking Edward what happened to his parents, my brain automatically gave Edward the response of, “They were delicious”?
--Meyer, I’m very serious. You do not need to place very large neon sign that says “THIS IS A HINT” over every bit of “subtle” foreshadowing you place in this story. I can see it for myself.
--There go the eyes again. Is he gonna do that a lot? If he is, I’m leaving.
--How the hell did you see him smiling if a) he’s driving away, and b) it’s raining so hard you could hardly see your own house?
Chapter 6 – Scary Stories
--And suddenly, the truck is there. She never heard the engine. I certainly hope I’m not the only one who imagined that Alice carried the truck over her head all the way to Bella’s. Actually, that’s not a bad guess—I never saw Bella give Edward her keys.
--Uh-oh. The Scary Sue’s are beginning to emerge. That’s just what this story needs. Man, I’m starting to change my mind. This isn’t a Rose Potter/Holly Potter knockoff. This is an Ariana Black knockoff.
--If they aren’t gossiping about Bella, they’re gossiping about Edward. *sigh*
--Stop moaning about the damned trip. Geez, this is just a repeat of her move to Forks. “Oh, woe is me, even though I agreed to do this, I must continually bemoan my fate.” SHUT UP!!!
--Ah, there’s our Head Scary Sue, Lauren. I’m pegging her as the leader. After all, she’s got the nasal voice and everything and her hatred of Bella is fueled by jealousy. She’ll rally the other girls to be Scary all over Bella so she can angst prettily about it.
--Bella, you keep emphasizing that Mike thinks of you as his property. If you don’t want to be with him romantically, TELL HIM. It was clear from the start that he is very interested in you—so stop being so coy and leading him on and take the boy aside and inform him that you do not feel that way about him, and that you probably never will (as long as Gorgeous
--Why the hell did you even move up to live with your father if you have no intentions of even treating him like your father? One could argue that you don’t think of him as your father, but you aren’t payin’ any rent, missy. You live under his rules.
--Oh, Bella, isn’t life just terrible for you? You’ve got all the boys fighting over you and fawning all over you and doing their best to make you happy, you’ve got all the girls jealous of you, and you’ve captured the attentions of what is widely regarded as the hottest boy in school. How cruel your lot in life is.
--*jerks awake* Damn. I was hoping this was just a dream. Well, I woke up in time to see a name I recognize—Jacob.
--Oh, you notice the time hiccups too, Bella? Phew! I am so relieved—I was beginning to think it was just me.
--Hmm. Jacob’s hot looks are ruined for you the minute he asks, “Are you Isabella Swan?” Yes, because he dares use your full name in any fashion, even though he has no idea that you prefer to go by Bella, he automatically sucks. You know, I’m sure that, would this have been reality, most people would’ve felt the same way about you. And really? I pretty much felt the same way about Edward. Except without the positive thoughts at first.
--“"Married. Wow." I was stunned. The twins were only a little over a year older than I was.” *raised eyebrow* And yet, you talk about marrying Edward before you even graduate high school. Sorry to bring up stuff I haven’t read already, but…well, couldn’t resist.
--You know, Jacob might actually be likable if Bella would stop interjecting shallow comments about what she finds hot about him. *looks down* Ah, this leads nicely into this next one.
--Back to Lauren, our chief Scary Sue of the hour. So far, she’s been described as insolent and resentful, with a nasally voice and fishy eyes. As she is a “bad” character, she is therefore ugly. But all of the “good” characters are beautiful. Actually, I should translate it like this. People who like Bella and worship her as they should are handsome. People who do not like Bella—no matter what the reason—are ugly. Glad we cleared that up.
--Huh. I see where Bella’s going with this. She already knows that Jacob’s sized her up the way every other male in this story has, so she’s gonna take full advantage of it. How…nice.
--I’m seriously surprised that Jacob didn’t notice anything off. One minute, Bella’s just relatively pleasant and friendly, and the next she’s oozing “charm” and fawning all over him. I think Jacob would ask if somebody dropped acid in her drink, actually.
--‘Kay. I listened to the whole story without comment. And you know what? From here on out, until he can prove otherwise, Jacob will henceforth be known as Plot Device. That is his name now. Because that is exactly what that was. That was a big fat infodump that Bella got inspiration to somehow wheedle out of Plot Device by deux ex machina—seriously, one person says something slightly suspicious about the Cullens and she immediately comes to the conclusion that Plot Device will know all about them—and lo and behold, he knows a legend about cold ones and wolves that relates perfectly to the Cullens. Thank you, Plot Device. We look forward to your next infodump. Oh, and don’t anybody try to convince me that, at this point, he is Señor Plot Device, because Meyer herself admitted that Plot Device was supposed to be simply that—a plot device. He just “grew” into his own character. Oh, and by the way—remember how I said she was a super-sleuth? I take it back. No, she isn’t. She was a little cock-tease and suckered a young hormonal teenager into telling her the Cullens were vampires. So…cheater.
--“I felt guilty as I said this, knowing that I'd used him. But I really did like Jacob. He was someone I could easily be friends with.” Yeah, I always like to collect a small group of people I can be friends with strictly so I can use them. Doesn’t everybody?
--“We all looked up at the glowering sky.” …did…did you seriously just write “the glowering sky”? Did it, perhaps, look like this?
I don’t have much to say this time around. So I’ll just make a list.
1. Meyer, you really, really don’t have to say every single time when you are hinting that Edward might be something speshul. I can get it myself.
2. Skies do not glower.
3. Phobias do, in fact, have varying degrees. Some people are more afraid of something than others are. Let’s use the fear of blood as an example. Some people fear the sight of their own, while others just fear the sight of it in general. However, there is no need to take that phobia and ratchet it up to extreme levels so that we cannot relate to your character. Also, irony is not your forte.
4. If you changed your mind about Plot Device and went back to edit Twilight to make him less of Plot Device and more of Jacob, you should’ve done it better. He’s still Plot Device.
5. Edward is a jerk.
6. Bella is a jerk.
7. Scary Sues do not a good character make. Although if she starts pointing out legitimate flaws in Bella’s character and the story in general, as Scary Sues are wont to do, I might start liking the story a little more.
8. I would appreciate it if Bella would stop with the put-upon act and just admit she is very flattered that all these boys like her. I also wish she would kindly and gently inform them that she is not interested in them, because she is interested in somebody else.
9. I can see why the kids don’t really like the Cullens—they apparently take off and skip school and classes whenever they like and never get in trouble for it at all.
10. If these vampires are trying to hide in plain sight amongst the humans, the rest of the group really needs to tell Edward to stop doing his best to reveal the big secret.
Stinger: “We all looked up at the glowering sky.”
( Chapter 7 - Nightmare )
Picture of the day. You know how people go on Wiki and vandalize it? My personal favorite was when somebody made a teeny tiny edit that had the pale horsemen of the apocalypse listed as carrying a shotgun. Well, Hyde found one on the Wiki article for Jacob. Here, you can read it for yourself in this handy screencap, as Wiki catches vandalism pretty fast.
And that’s all she wrote.