Bella is astounded by many things at once. Things like the brightness of the light, the grains in the wood ceiling, the dust motes floating in the air. She inhales and realizes she no longer needs to inhale, but decides she likes it; she can taste the room and beings around her. And she can hear everything, too – the TV downstairs, someone singing along to rap music on the distant freeway.
Then she realizes someone is holding her hand. The skin is smooth, but it’s the wrong temperature. This freaks her out so much that she’s up off the bed and crouching defensively against the wall in about a sixteenth of a second. Duh, Bella, you’re ice cold now, too. Bella realizes she overreacted and takes in her surroundings.
Edward is leaning over the bed, and Jasper and Emmett are standing by the door in front of the other Cullens, protecting them from something – protecting them from Bella. Bella can smell the remnants of her own (delicious-smelling) blood in the room, and feels a tickling burning in her throat.
But through all these observations, Bella only has eyes for Eddie-kins. She’s never SEEN him before now. He’s even more perfect than she previously thought.
Then she starts trying to remember the last hour or so of her human life. But all her memories are fuzzy, and she doesn’t know if everyone’s okay. Where’s Renesmee? And Jacob — does he hate her now? Are all the Cullens okay? And what is she supposed to tell Charlie now?
While Bella’s being all ADD jumping from one question to the next, Ed runs his fingers across her cheek. And she feels that all-too-familiar tingly sensation in her pants. But wait — wasn’t she supposed to lose this after being turned? She hurtles herself at Edward and nearly crushes him with her newbie strength. Desire ripples through her, and she tells him she loves him — in a new, bell-like voice. Then they’re eating each others faces like they never have before. Bella is only stopped from ripping Ed’s clothes off by Emmett clearing his throat and reminding her everyone is there, watching. Bella, not really being very voyeuristic, pulls away feeling embarrassed and horny.
Carlizzle comes into the room, and asks Bella how she feels. She says she’s surprised she still feels like herself. Carlisle admits he’s surprised, too — she’s much more controlled than any of them expected her to be. He then asks her about the transformation process. Bella remembers the pain, but she doesn’t want Eddie-kins or Carlizzle to feel guilty about basically paralyzing her with all that morphine, so she lies and says she doesn’t remember much between holding Renesmee and opening her eyes.
Carlizzle stops prodding for more details when he realizes she must be very thirsty. And Bella is pretty thirsty, she realizes, once he mentions it. Edward invites her to hunt with him, promising he’ll show her how it’s done. But she wants to see Renesmee first; her nudger; her stranger baby. But this isn’t advisable, considering Renesmee is half-human with a beating heart, and Mommy could decide she smells tasty.
Bella comes to terms with this, but still has other questions. Where is the baby now? (With Rosalie.) How long was she out? (Two days.) What about Charlie? (He thinks she’s in Atlanta at the CDC, and they’ve given him a bad number.) And Jacob? (This everyone skirts around; they don’t want to tell her that Jake is now in love with her child, so they urge her to go hunt.)
But before she goes, Alice wants her to take a look in a mirror. Bella does, and she’s both incredibly pleased by the perfect, beautiful creature staring back at her and horrified at the same time. Who IS this shimmery vampiress with the blood-red eyes?
The Cullens are all very surprised at how well Bella is controlling her emotions. Jasper doesn’t trust it. And Edward is almost disappointed that he still can’t read her mind. But Bella doesn’t really care. After all, she’s pretty now. And that’s all that really matters.
Best Worst Lines
“And most of all, I could taste an almost-honey-lilac-and-sun-flavored scent that was the strongest thing, the closest thing to me.” (So now sun has a flavor? Is it butter?)
“All this was a sideline. The greater part of my senses and my mind were still focused on Edward’s face.
I had never seen it before this second.
How many times had I stared at Edward and marveled over his beauty? How many hours — days, weeks — of my life had I spent dreaming about what I then deemed to be perfection? I thought I’d known his face better than my own. I’d thought this was the one sure physical thing in my whole world: the flawlessness of Edward’s face.
I may as well have been blind.” (390) (Gag.)
“I could not answer immediately, lost as I was in the velvet folds of his voice. It was the most perfect symphony, a symphony in one instrument, an instrument more profound than any created by man….”
“I was stronger than Edward. I’d made him say ow.” (393)
“’I love you,’ I said, but it sounded like singing. My voice rang and shimmered like a bell.
His answering smile dazzled me more than it ever had when I was human; I could really see it now.”
“’How do you feel, Bella?’ Carlisle asked. I considered that for a sixty-fourth of a second.”
“’Oh well,’ I said lightly, relieved that my thoughts were still my own. ‘I guess my brain will never work right. At least I’m pretty.’”
Bella is Still Horny
“Wait, I thought as the trembling blossomed into a warmth, a yearning. Wasn’t I supposed to lose this? Wasn’t giving up this feeling a part of the bargain?” (392)
“But as Edward’s hand curled to the shape of my face like satin-covered steel, desire raced through my dried-out veins, singing from my scalp to my toes.”
“His hand stroked my cheek again, and I all but forgot my distress as another wave of desire rippled through my motionless body.” (393)
“It was like he’d never kissed me — like this was our first kiss. And, in truth, he’d never kissed me this way before.
It almost made me feel guilty. Surely I was in breach of the contract. I couldn’t be allowed to have this, too.” (394)
(Okay, we get it already! There aren’t going to be any newbie killing rampages. Bella isn’t all that different. We’re just going to get horny sparklepires and more G-rated sex. Great.)
Things That Really Irk Us
Alllllll the unnecessary details. We understand that the Cullens have super-duper speshul senses. But we really don’t care about the dust motes in the air, or the exact way the light refracts off Alice’s teeth. Clearly SMeyer has never heard the phrase “less is more.”
We also don’t give a shit how fast Bella moves and thinks now. Oh, you thought about that question for exactly one-sixty-fourth of a second? Kudos. We do not care.
Bella being all ADD. She was already annoying enough, but now she’s both whiny AND hyperactive.
Bella being so “behaved” and controlled. We were really hoping for some carnage. But instead we get reasoned thinking and self-control. What a boring newborn vampire!
All the “Oh hey, I’m still horny” crap crammed into three pages is overkill. We get it — Bella is still feeling the tinglies for Eddie-kins’ sparkly dick. It doesn’t need to be restated every paragraph.
And umm, can we address the “At least I’m pretty” line? Good lord. How much more superficial can you get, SMeyer? BOTHERED!
We’re betting five sprinkle cookies that they’re fucking in the woods by the end of the next chapter. Oh, wait, excuse us… “making love.” With no details, of course.Go to Chapter 21.