Things go back to “pre-zombie normal” for Bella in no time flat. The Cullens are welcomed back into the Forks community with open arms (which is odd, isn’t it, considering people would talk about them behind their backs for being “weird” before?), and Alice and Edward return to high school. It’s almost like they never left. Bella, meanwhile, has to pretend to at least be thinking about Plan B (and no, not the “oops-the-condom-broke” Plan B) – college.
Bella is super grounded, but Edward is still allowed to visit. And drive her to school. And pick her up from work. And of course sneak back in through her window after Charlie goes to bed…
But another mythical boy is on Bella’s mind, too – Jacob. He won’t return Bella’s calls (which Bella makes in secret in between the time Eddie gets kicked out of the house and when he sneaks back in), and this makes Bella sad. Well, sort of sad. With Eddie-kins back in her life, she doesn’t really have all that much time to be sad about losing her best friend. Plus, Edward doesn’t like when Bella brings Jake up in conversation. Old enemies and all.
It finally comes up one day on the ride home, with Bella being all, “Jake hates me!” Edward assures her that nobody hates her; Jake is probably just keeping his distance because he knows the Cullens – and, namely, Edward – are back. Bella thinks this is silly, because the Cullens aren’t, like, REAL vampires. But Edward explains that, if he and Jacob were to come face to face, they both might lose control. And Edward can’t promise that he wouldn’t kill Bella’s buddy. This makes Bella think in terms of Romeo and Paris again, and about Paris’ fate at the hands of Romeo – he gets killed. Dun dun dunnn.
But Bella has bigger things to worry about when they get closer to Charlie’s house. Sitting in the driveway is Bella’s shiny red motorcycle. And Charlie is pissed. Bella is betrayed; how could Jake DO this to her?!? She goes all melodramatic for a few paragraphs, before Edward clues her in to the fact that Jacob is still there, waiting for them in the woods. Bella’s instinct is to beat Jacob up (ha, you’re so funny, Bella), but Edward tells her Jake is actually there to talk to him – he’s acting as spokesperson for the wolf pack.
Bella is a little apprehensive (remember, Paris), but she and Edward head into the trees, where Jacob is waiting – barefoot, shirtless, and quivering like always. Edward keeps a safe distance. Bella confronts Jacob, asking how he could do this to her – and to Charlie. Edward reads Jake’s mind, and reveals that Jake just wanted Bella to get grounded. He wasn’t aware that she already was grounded, and that Charlie was the one keeping her away from La Push, not Edward. Jake tells Ed to stop using his speshul powers.
Edward then gives Jacob a sincere thank you for keeping Bella safe when he was gone, and tells Jacob he owes him one. This catches both Jacob and Bella off guard, and Jacob suggests – through his thoughts – that Edward’s favor could be leaving again. For good this time. But Edward won’t have that; he’s here to stay as long as Bella wants him.
Finally they get down to the real reason for Jacob’s visit – he’s here to discuss the finer points of the vampy-wolfy treaty. He reminds Edward that the truce will cease to exist if any of the Cullens BITE – not kill – a human. Bella gets pissed, and tells Jake it’s none of his business what she does with her soul. Which of course upsets Jacob; he obviously didn’t really think Bella was planning on becoming a Cullen. He almost explodes into a ball of fur, but pulls himself together in time.
Jacob is in the middle of informing Edward that there’s been no sign of Victoria lately when Charlie’s angry voice calls into the trees. Edward wants to leave, but Bella is torn; she doesn’t want things to end this way with Jacob. Bella wants to go give Jake a hug, but Edward holds her back. There’s some mild tension between the boys for roughly two sentences, until Bella pulls Edward away. Her last glimpse of Jacob through the trees is of him looking crestfallen.
On the walk back to the house, Bella reflects on all the problems in her life: Her best friend and her boo want to kill each other. Victoria is still on the prowl somewhere. The Volturi will kill her if she doesn’t become a vampire. The wolf pack will kill her – and maybe the rest of the Cullens – if she DOES become a vampire. And Charlie’s way beyond pissed. She’s just in such a pickle. What WILL happen next??
Best Worst Lines
“With Edward near me, it was hard to think about unhappy things — even my former best friend, who was probably very unhappy right now, due to me.”
“The fairy tale was back on. Prince returned, bad spell broken. I wasn’t sure exactly what to do about the leftover, unresolved character. Where was his happily ever after?” (550)
“Every time I looked at his face, that impossibly perfect face, my heart pounded strong and healthy and very there in my chest.”
“Shiny, bright red, impossible to miss. My motorcycle, flaunting itself in the driveway.” (We bet it was also wearing a pleather mini skirt and inappropriately slutty shirt.)
“’Was there something else you needed, Jacob? You wanted me in trouble — mission Accomplished. Charlie might just send me to military school. But that won’t keep me away from Edward. There’s nothing that can do that. What more do you want?’” (558) (We hate you, Bella.)
“Like we were connected, the echo of his pain twisted inside me. His pain, my pain.” (561)
“I squared my shoulders and walked forward to meet my fate, with my destiny solidly at my side.” (563) (Wait, wait, wait. … Fate and destiny are kinda the same thing. How can you go to meet your fate if your destiny is already at your side? We are confused. That, and, Edward being Bella’s “destiny” really disturbs us.)
Things That Really Irk Us
The fact that Forks welcomes the Cullens back so eagerly and easily. SMeyer, you suck at resolution.
Bella feeling so BETRAYED by Jacob when he brings her bike over. You’re the one who was using him throughout your entire friendship, bitch. You totally deserve this.
The continuing references to “Romeo and Juliet.” This needs to stop.
The dialogue in the woods sucks. (For example: “’Aw, Jake!’ I groaned. ‘I’m already grounded! Why do you think I haven’t been down to La Push to kick your butt for avoiding my phone calls?’” ) We wish Bella would never open her mouth.
The last line. (See “Best Worst Lines” above for why.)
*Confetti and noise-makers.* WE’RE DONE! Halfway through the series! We deserve some kind of medal or plaque or statue or something for keeping up with this. Seriously. And you all deserve cookies or cupcakes or something sweet and tasty for sticking with us through all this. We love you!
Ugh, but now it’s on to “Eclipse.” Joy. Do they finally bang in this next book? Is it sparkly? Oh wait, that’s “Breaking Dawn,” isn’t it? Crap. So that means absolutely nothing will happen in this third book. For some reason, we are not surprised.Onward!