In this chapter, Bella gets exactly what she wanted, yet still isn’t happy about it. Surprised? Me neither.
It starts with the girls (Bella, Jessica and Angela) on the road to Port Angeles for their shopping excursion, with Bella now referring to her father as “The Chief” because I guess he’s not even good enough for her to use his real name anymore, nonetheless call him ‘Dad’. Still don’t get this; still don’t like it.
“It had been a while since I’d had a girls’ night out, and the estrogen rush was invigorating.”
Really? Estrogen rush? This makes me a little bit sick, and I don’t even know why. But I am pretty damn sure I have never experienced an “estrogen rush”, and right now I’m feeling pretty damn thankful for that.
Their activities on the drive sound pretty stereotypical and annoying, so I guess that’s fitting, and we get a bunch of info about the girls’ relationships or lack thereof that I just really don’t care about at all, before Jessica and Bella get into a conversation about how she’s never been to a dance or been in a relationship before. Man, this book is boring.
The only point of this conversation seems to be to put Bella in a bad mood, because nothing can be nice for more than a minute in her life, and that bad mood is brought on by the girls alerting her to the fact that Tyler has been telling people he’s taking her to prom. Apparently that is why Lauren hates her so much, which is disappointing because as you know, I’d really hoped it was because of Bella herself…but hey, at least Lauren has a reason for hating her, whereas Bella just hates everything all the time for no apparent reason.
Bella contemplates running Tyler over with her truck, which is very nice of her, and then there’s almost an entire page of the girls trying on dresses that I could not possibly care less about if I tried.
“The girls’-night high was wearing off in the wake of my annoyance at Tyler, leaving room for the gloom to move back in.”
Oh, fucking fantastic. Just what we needed. You don’t even pretend that this book is going to be a pleasant read, do you, Meyer?
After some pointless filler, Bella gets up the guts to ask Angela if the Cullens are often out of school, which they are, when the weather is good. Apparently they go backpacking! Yeah, I bet. Bella decides that she likes Angela more because she answered the question in exactly the way she (Bella) wanted her to, which Jess wouldn’t have done, because Jess is clearly a horrible person that deserves all the bad shit Bella thinks about her, despite that she’s never done a single damn thing to Bella that wasn’t positive.
They all decide to go to dinner, but not until after the girls drop off their clothes in the car and go for a walk to the bay, so Bella decides that while they do that, she’ll look for a bookstore (which she has to do alone, even though they want to go, because reasons). Bella finds a bookstore, but it’s the wrong bookstore (of course; Jess pointed it out, so it had to be wrong), so she keeps looking for another one, thinking incredibly negative, emo thoughts all the while. She sees Edward’s Volvo as she goes and decides that he’s a “stupid, unreliable vampire”, though I’m not sure how the hell he’s being unreliable or stupid, and then “stomps” onward, because again, she’s a fucking child.
She eventually realizes that the way she’s walking is away from the stores and into the warehouse district, so she decides to loop around at the next corner and try searching for a bookstore on some different streets on the way back, at which point a group of four men comes around the corner she was planning on taking. As they pass her, they call out to her and she responds, then turns away and keeps walking while they laugh at her, ignoring them when they tell her to wait.
She keeps walking as it gets darker, then realizes that two of the men from the group of four are walking behind her, so she speeds up her pace and reminds herself where her pepper spray is, which is nowhere useful and was therefore very important to have mentioned. Thanks, Meyer.
This scene is drawn out for far longer than I’d have liked, but eventually Bella ends up in an area where she initially expects to be able to get away easily, but then realizes that the other two men are between her and the rest of civilization. She tries to run, though she’s got nowhere to go but closer to one of the pairs of men, so she prepares to scream and/or defend herself. All she ends up doing, though, is stopping in the middle of the alley and telling the men, quite pathetically, to “stay away” from her, which of course only amuses them.
Drawing this scene out even further (it’s already been multiple pages of this, by this point), Bella tries to recall any self-defence she knows, then is reminded by her own brain how pathetic she is and that she will not possibly be able to take four guys on, no matter what she remembers.. Luckily for her, at just that moment (because timing -_-), a car appears, so she dives toward it just as it spins around to reveal an open passenger door, because things really do always happen just like in the movies, right Meyer?
A voice that Bella instantly recognizes as Edward’s commands her to get in, so she does, because she feels ohhhhh so very safe just hearing his voice. ❤ ❤ ❤ Fuck, this is stupid. She is repeatedly afraid of him for different reasons in this book, while at the same time Meyer is trying to convince us that she feels 100% safe and protected when she’s around him. You can’t have it both ways, Meyer!
Edward speeds away from the scene as Bella fawns over how pretty he is again, before realizing how angry his facial expression is and asking if he’s okay…which, of course, he is not. What kind of stupid question is that?!
When they’re out of town, Edward stops the car and asks if she’s alright, then asks her to distract him, telling her he needs to calm down. Well, at least he’s got coping methods to deal with his anger, which is more than can be said of Bella, who doesn’t even try. Proving that point, she tells him she’s going to run Tyler over before school, explaining that she’s going to do so because he’s telling everyone he’s going to prom with her, and she thinks if she endangers his life then he won’t feel like he has to make amends for endangering hers. Cause that’s just completely sound logic, right there.
Blah blah blah, more about that, then Edward reveals that he sometimes has a problem with his temper, but he knows that it wouldn’t be useful for him to hunt down the guys that were bothering Bella, so he’s trying to clear his head. Bella points out that it’s late and Jess and Angela will be worried since she hasn’t met them yet, so Edward drives her back to town, right to the restaurant where she’s supposed to meet them, despite that she never tells him that that’s where they were going to go.
Edward informs her that he’s taking her to dinner, then tells her to go let Angela and Jess know that so he doesn’t have to risk running into the guys that followed her again (what? Why would he?), so she calls out to them. Apparently they are very relieved that she’s okay, and very concerned about where she’s been (which they ask her about, and she tells them she got lost and ran into Edward), but when Edward asks if he can join them for dinner, they reveal that they already ate…so they can’t really have been all that concerned.
Bella decides that she doesn’t need to eat, but Edward disagrees, then asks Jess and Angela if it’s okay if he takes her home instead, which they agree to once Jess verifies from Bella’s expression that it’s what she wants.
“I wanted nothing more than to be alone with my perpetual savior. There were so many questions that I couldn’t bombard him with till we were by ourselves.”
God, this is annoying. And why can’t you just leave the poor guy alone? If you see him as your ‘savior’, the least you could do is be appreciative of what he’s done for you without annoying him with your endless fucking questions! If you know it’s going to be a ‘bombardment’, which is NOT a good thing, then why the hell are you doing it?! Especially cause you just saw how worked up he is! Lay off for five minutes!
The girls leave, and Bella – because she’s a complete fucking moron who just can’t help but get in her own way – ‘insists’ that she’s not hungry, and then sighs in resignation when Edward continues to head to the restaurant anyway. What the sweet fuck is wrong with this girl? She wants a date with Edward, one is offered to her, and now she acts like it’s some huge fucking inconvenience to her to have to go on it?! WHY DOES ANYONE LIKE YOU, BELLA? And why can’t you EVER be grateful when things you want come your way??? What could there possibly be to sigh about when the guy you’ve got a crush on WANTS TO TAKE YOU TO DINNER???? AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAGHHHHH! I don’t know why this is so infuriating to me, but it definitely is.
It takes almost a page for them to get a table, because Meyer feels the need to point out how attractive Edward is to everyone and how classy and sophisticated he must be because he refused the first table offered to them, but eventually they do get one. Once they’re seated, Bella criticizes Edward for ‘dazzling’ the hostess, saying it’s not fair, but Edward pretends to have no idea what she’s talking about. He asks if he dazzles her, which she admits he does, and then their server shows up, just as horny for Edward as everyone else.
Bella is clearly jealous of the attention Edward is getting, but Edward is only paying attention to her, asking her if she’s okay, apparently waiting for her to go into shock. Uh…why? Nothing bad happened to her. She was in the street, some guys were there, no one even got close to her, and then she was gone. It could have been a big deal, but it wasn’t, and other things happened since then…why would she go into shock?
The waitress comes back after getting their drinks, they order – well, Bella does, anyway – then Edward orders her to drink, which is weird, so she downs both her drink and Edward’s, then gets cold and wants her jacket, but realizes it’s in Jessica’s car. Edward instantly strips his off, giving Bella a chance to check him out, then gives it to her so she can get all swoony over how it smells as she puts it on.
Edward compliments her, then they discuss her not being in shock again, because Edward says any normal person would be, which just seems like complete and utter bullshit to me. Again, WHY? What she “went through” wasn’t that traumatizing. If she didn’t go into shock after being nearly killed by a van, why would she after nothing actually happens to her?
Bella confesses to him that she feels safe with him, which displeases him, then comments on the colour of his eyes, saying she’s got a theory as to why he always seems to be in a worse mood when his eyes are darker than when they’re lighter. Blah blah blah, pointless back and forth, the waitress comes and says stuff, and Bella decides she’ll tell Edward her theory when they’re in the car, because she has some questions for him first.
She starts with the questions by asking him why he’s in Port Angeles, but he refuses to answer that, so she starts talking about hypothetical situations in which one could read minds with only a few exceptions, and asks how that works, if there are any limitations, etc. She makes it very obvious that she’s asking how he found her and knew she was in trouble, so he answers in the same way she’s phrasing things; as though it’s a hypothetical question.
He informs her that one would not need to have perfect timing to make it work, as long as they were paying attention, then comments on the fact that only she could get in trouble in a place as small as Port Angeles. She tries to remind him that they were talking about a hypothetical situation, but he continues to make it clear that he knows she’s talking about herself, so she asks how he knew, giving up on the act (thank god).
She tells him he can trust her, then tries to touch his hands, but he pulls back, so she does as well. He says he’s not sure he has a choice but to trust her, because she’s more observant than he gave her credit for, but that is the biggest pile of bullshit I have ever heard. She’s not observant, it’s just fucking obvious, Edward, and you know it.
He comments on what a magnet for trouble she is, she asks if he puts himself in that category even though she knows the answer, which is “Unequivocally“, and okay, yes, I do like how Edward talks sometimes. Not getting the hint that she shouldn’t touch him, Bella reaches over and touches his hand again, despite that he yet again pulls back, and then shockingly, she actually thanks him in a genuine manner.
He responds positively to her gratitude, but makes it quite clear she has to fuck off with the touching him thing by putting his hands under the table, then admits that he followed her to Port Angeles because he wanted to keep her alive. He teases her about how difficult she makes that for him while she feels a “surge of pleasure” at the knowledge that he’s been following her (at least she does consider that she should probably have a problem with it, but still…).
She asks if he thought he interfered with fate in keeping her from dying the first time with the van, but he responds that that wasn’t the first time she was close to death; the first time was the first time she met him. She is briefly afraid of that, but then remembers how safe she feels with him and is fine, which is fucking stupid, because she’s not even actually considering what he’s saying about how dangerous he is, yet again. He’s being pretty fucking clear here; take the out!
“‘You remember?’ he asked, his angel’s face grave.”
…Angel’s face? What the fuck? We’ve established that he’s a vampire, he has made it more than clear that he’s dangerous; how does he have an angel’s face? Is it just because he’s fucking pretty? Dear god I hate this book.
He calls her on still being there despite remembering how scary he was the first day, and she says it’s because he somehow knew how to find her today…which again is bullshit, because while she might be there at that exact moment because he found her, she’s still following him around instead of running away for her own stupid reasons that have nothing to do with his choices or any sort of intelligent decision-making.
He tells her to eat as he explains how he found her, starting by telling her it’s harder to keep track of her than other people because he can’t “hear her mind”, so he had to use Jessica’s instead. He says he hadn’t expected her to be able to find trouble in Port Angeles, so he hadn’t been paying too much attention until he realized that she was no longer with Jessica anymore, so he went to try to find her at the bookstore she was supposed to be going to. He came up with a general idea of where she’d probably be going, then accessed the thoughts of people on the street to see if they had seen her, because while he didn’t see any reason that he should be worried for her, he felt anxious. Awwwwwwwwwwww.
Blah blah blah, he listened to more people, it got later, then he gets angry as he recalls hearing what the men who were surrounding Bella were thinking, and gets super dramatic in his storytelling. He tells her again how hard it was to restrain himself from hurting them when he took her away, and explains that that’s why he didn’t let her go with Angela and Jessica; because he knew if he was alone, he’d go back and find them.
After a few moments of silence, he asks if she’s ready to go home, and she says she is (kind of; there’s sappy crap, but who the hell cares?), so he pays their bill and off they go. As they leave, Bella thinks about how much she wishes she could touch him but can’t, and is glad he doesn’t know that, and I was going to rag on this, but y’know what? I’ve felt that too. So I won’t say anything bad about this one.
More fawning over Edward and how good he smells and whatever the hell, and then he starts to drive them home, telling her it’s her turn to share with him, and that’s the end of the chapter. Sorry if this seemed rushed or confusing, but I was behind due to Labour Day weekend eventfulness, so…I guess it kind of is. So yeah! Chapter 9 next time for sure, but whether or not there’ll be more than that depends on how the next couple of days goes. Wheee!
(See Mike’s take on this chapter at http://emptystress.wordpress.com!)