If you ever find yourself in a sticky situation, especially one that’s a matter of life and/or death, just lie your way out of it and try to hurt as many loved ones as you can in the process and hope that they’ll forgive you later. Because that’s what Bella Swan would do.
Last time: The Cullens meet a group of three French vampires. One of them is bad and wants Bella’s blood.
This time: Some of the Cullens and Bella arrive at her home. The bad vampire (his name is James, but I’m going to call him Tracker James from now on) is not there, so that’s good. But Charlie’s awake. He’s been waiting for Bella to come back. Now things are going to get a little bit awkward.
Bella storms into the home pretending to be angry because she broke up with Edward. But Charlie thinks it’s real. Poor guy. He doesn’t know his daughter’s lying to him. She goes into her room, shuts the door and starts packing.
She says she’s breaking up with Edward because she likes him. Oh, that makes perfect sense! I have little to no experience in romanticalness, but I think that if you like someone, you don’t break up with them. But like I said, I am unqualified in this area, so I could be wrong.
Bella says she doesn’t want to put down roots in Forks and get stuck in the tiny town for the rest of her life, which is why she’s moving to Phoenix. To be honest, I don’t think she tried that hard to come up with a good excuse. If I were her, I would have said I broke up with Edward because I met a more handsome guy named Jacob. Then I would have actually broken up with Edward and started dating Jacob.
Charlie tries to convince Bella to stay, and he almost does. He tells her to wait a week before driving down to Arizona, because that’s when Bella’s mom will be back. This distracts Bella, but only for a second. The more time she spends arguing with Charlie, the closer Tracker James is going to be. Then she has an idea. An awful idea. A terrible, wonderful, awful idea. A trump card, really.
She tells her dad, “Just let me go, Charlie. It didn’t work out, okay? I really, really hate Forks!”
What’s so special about those words? Bella’s mom said those exact words when she left Charlie. That’s cold. But drastic times call for drastic measures.
So what Stephenie Meyer is saying here, to all of her teenage readers, is that it’s perfectly fine to lie to your parents if you’re being tracked by a bloodthirsty vampire. Now, is this true? I wouldn’t know, because I’ve never been in this situation before. But should I ever find myself facing this problem, I know what to do. Thanks, Ms. Meyer!
I should point out that Bella feels guilty about all this. But not guilty enough to tell the truth, because apparently her life is more important to her than her relationship with her father. I’ve got to say, she’s got her priorities straight.
Her lie works. Charlie’s left speechless. Bella runs out of the house and jumps into her truck, where Edward has been waiting this whole time. He has some bad news: Tracker James is following them. And they can’t outrun him.
As he’s driving to his house, Edward blames himself for the whole situation, then backtracks and puts some of the blame on Bella. “If you didn’t smell so appallingly luscious, he might not have bothered,” he says. So Bella was asking for it by the way she smelled.
Luckily, Edward can read minds, and he knows that the woman vampire is going to help James, but Laurent probably won’t because he’s embarrassed of James.
They’ve created a game for Tracker James. Tracking is all that Tracker James lives for, “and a challenge is all he asks of life,” Edward says. And the Cullens present an interesting challenge: A group of strong fighters bent on protecting a weak female protagonist.
Then Edward’s all like, I guess I have to kill this guy, there’s no other way around it. The only way to kill a vampire is to “tear him to shreds, and then burn the pieces.” So I guess all those stories about sunlight and wooden stakes and silver bullets are false. I wish I’d known that before I went vampire hunting last month. Things would have gone a lot more smoothly.
Edward and Bella arrive safely at the Cullen’s home, where they find Laurent talking to the rest of the Cullen family. Edward tells him about Tracker James, and Laurent says he was afraid this would happen. He also says that once Tracker James gets going, nothing and no one will be able to stop him. The guy is “absolutely lethal” and “he’s got a brilliant mind and unparalleled senses.”
Laurent doesn’t want to pick sides in this battle, so he leaves to join some vampires in Alaska. By this time, Tracker James is three miles away, meeting up with the woman vampire.
So here’s the plan, or at least what I think the plan is. Edward, Carlisle and Emmett will distract Tracker James, and Alice and Jasper will go south with Bella. If you don’t recognize most of those names, don’t worry. They’re not too important to the story.
Edward kisses Bella goodbye (on the mouth, I might add), then leaves to kill Tracker James.
Buckle your seat belts, because for the first time in 19 chapters and 400 pages, things are going to get very interesting. At least I hope so.