21. Phone Call
Version One: “Say it now. Say it now. Say it now.”
Version Two: Bella wakes up slightly upset, because her sleep schedule is off, and that’s not okay. She goes out of the room to find Alice sketching again — this time she’s seen the “dark room” again, but in the light this time. Bella immediately recognizes it as her mother’s living room. (Dun dun dunnn.) They now know for sure that James in is Phoenix, and that he’s now probably after Bella’s mother.
Bella finds out that dear Edward is on his way to Phoenix to save her, and Alice and Jasper promise they’ll find Renee before James does. Jasper goes to check out of the hotel, and Carlisle calls to let them know that Edward boarded his plane. As soon as Alice hangs up, the phone rings again. And this time it appears to be Bella’s mother. Or is it?
Bella is trying to calm her seemingly anxious mother down when James’ pleasant voice comes over the line. He assures her that he doesn’t want to hurt her mother, and he won’t — if she does what she tells him to. Then follows an awkward sequence where James instructs Bella to say certain words and phrases (so as not to alarm Alice). “Answer yes or no. Say it now.” Bella obeys. Verbatim.
James tells her that she’s to get away from Alice and Jasper and go to her house, where she’ll find further instructions. Bella realizes she’s going to die. But before that, she wants to leave one last note for Edward, asking him not to avenge her death.
Best Worst Lines
(There are so many in just nine pages!)
“Two pairs of eternal eyes stared at me.” (424)
“The voice I heard now was as unfamiliar as it was unexpected. It was a man’s tenor voice, a very pleasant, generic voice — the kind of voice that you heard in the background of luxury car commercials.” (427)
“‘As you’re walking, please say: ‘Mom, please listen to me.’ Say it now.’
‘Mom, please listen to me.’” (427)
“‘Say: ‘Mom, trust me.’ Say it now.’” (428)
“‘Say: ‘I love you, Mom. I’ll see you soon.’ Say it now.’
‘I love you, Mom.’ My voice was thick. ‘I’ll see you soon,’ I promised.” (429)
“And then I carefully sealed away my heart.” (432)
Things That Really Irk Us
Say: Ugggghhh. Say it now. This whole James instructing Bella what to say passage, with Bella repeating it all verbatim, is beyond annoying. There are, in fact, other ways to pull this off, SMeyer. Ways that don’t bore your poor readers to tears.
Despite all the things the Cullens have told her, Bella is still under the impression that one little letter will keep Edward from going after James once she sacrifices herself. Dumb. Dumb, dumb, dumb. You deserve to die, Bella.Go to Chapter 22.