His voice was rough—if velvet can be rough—with anxiety.
... bad writing HURTS.
Bella then has a little meltdown that is supposed to make her seem compassionate and sympathetic, but which fails utterly. Why? Because when she saw those people being marched off to their deaths, she immediately started ogling the vampire who was doing the marching.
I could maybe maybe MAYBE believe that she actually gave a shit if she had said something like, "We have to do something, Edward! How can we just let them go?!" But since Bella's "horrified response" was to ogle a vampire woman's sexy legs, I'm not buying it.
Her meltdown is probably just another plea for attention.
It was only then that I realized I was shaking, shaking hard, my entire frame vibrating until my teeth chattered and the room around me seemed to wobble and blur in my eyes.
You know, the fact that she's NEVER been really scared, upset or hysterical before really shows how crap Smeyer's crap writing is. It just reinforces that Bella has no past - she "began" when she came to Forks.
"I think she's having hysterics. Maybe you should slap her," Alice suggested.
"How will that help?"
"I dunno. I just really like the idea of slapping her. Try it six or seven times, and if that doesn't work, punch her in the gut."
Nah, Edturd is horrified by the idea of slapping his pwecious Bewwa, whom he totally is not in love with even though he sniffs her hair and humps her leg and is okay with her dying as long as she stays human.
Then I understood. Oh. The noise was me. The ripping sound was the sobs coming from my chest. That's what was shaking me.
Can someone PLEASE explain Bella's weird detachment from her body?
I wonder if it's an extension of her sociopathy, because whenever she has an emotional reaction to ANYTHING, she doesn't realize it's happening. Remember when she couldn't figure out that she was crying even though the world had gone all wobbly and ripply? And now she can't figure out that she's sobbing until people give her clues.
He pulled me onto his lap and tucked the thick wool cloak around me, protecting me from his cold skin.
"And now it's storytime..."
Who knew how much time I had to look at his face? He was saved, and I was saved, and he could leave me as soon as we were free. To have my eyes so filled with tears that I could not see his features clearly was wasteful—insanity.
... oh fuck you, you bitch. You just saw a bunch of people being marched off to die, to be MURDERED, and all you care about is getting a clear look at your ex-boyfriend's face. You vapid little whore. Go to hell! Do not pass "go," do not collect any amount of money.
But, behind my eyes where the tears could not wash the image away, I could still see the panicked face of the tiny woman with the rosary.
Bullshit. If she really gave a crap about that poor woman or any of the others, she would have thought of that FIRST. Not her boyfriend.
And no, I did not edit that. It came directly after Bella lamented that it was wasteful—insanity to not gawp at Edturd's face. Honestly, it feels like a hasty addition to make Bella seem like less of an evil bitchwhoredemonslut, probably by some poor alcoholic editor trying to slog through this mess.
But really, it doesn't work for two reasons:
- Bella ogling Heidi. This MIGHT have been okay if she had seen Heidi BEFORE she realized that the people were going to die.
- The above paragraph about Bella thinking ONLY about ogling Edturd. If that paragraph had been deleted, this might have been a decent after-the-fact reaction. Hell, I might have been able to accept Bella's lack of immediate reaction as being shock. But no, her first thought is, "Hawt ex-boyfriend! Must lust!" and then she INSTANTLY flips to "Those poor people being horribly murdered!"
"All those people," I sobbed.
"I know," he whispered.
"It's so horrible."
"Yes, it is. I wish you hadn't had to see that."
"This dialogue is stilted."
"Yes, I know."
"It's like the author inserted this at the last minute because the editor said I came across as a sociopathic bitch."
"That's because it was."
Bella snivels and wipes her nose on the cloak, and Gianna comes over to see if she can help. Edturd is as rude as you'd expect him to be to a woman, but she clearly gives not one fuck.
I kinda like how Gianna not only is totally unintimidated by Edturd, but clearly doesn't find him attractive either.
"Does she know what's going on here?" I demanded,
Yes, try to take the moral high ground. Never mind that you casually joked about helping the Cullens slaughter your entire school. Never mind that your boyfriend tried to kill thousands by flashing them. Never mind that he was planning to hunt and kill innocent people. Never mind that you and Alice were totally okay with all that.
No, we should hate Gianna for being okay with it.
Edward reveals that Gianna knows that the Volturi might kill her, but she's hoping that they'll decide to turn her instead. For some reason, the revelation that this Renfield wants to be a vampire SHOCKS little Miss "I Wanna Be A Vampire Please Please Please Turn Me I'll Hold My Breath Until You Do PLEEEEEEEEZ!"
I felt the blood leave my face. "She wants to be one of them?"
"How could she possibly want to be a vampire? I'M the only one who gets to want that! Edwaaaaaarrrdd, she's infringing on my speshulness!"
I shuddered. "How can she want that?" I whispered, more to myself than really looking for an answer. "How can she watch those people file through to that hideous room and want to be a part of that?"
I think this is Smeyer's clumsy, clumsy attempt at giving Bella doubts, or pretending that vampiric nature actually bothers her. Trust me, it doesn't. And I wouldn't be surprised if she never ever mentioned this incident again.
Here's the problems:
- Again, Bella and Alice did not give one shit about thousands of people dying. THOUSANDS. Not just forty, but THOUSANDS.
- We see vampires later on who are deemed "good" and whom Bella befriends... who drink human blood. Meaning that they also kill humans.
- So clearly Bella doesn't really care about coldly murdering innocent people... unless you're Catholic. Then it's so very very shocking and horrifying, and you're just so MEAN.
- Bella has already decided that she's gonna be one of the "civilized" vampires, so there's no conflict.
- This little dumbshit claims to have researched pretty much every folkloric vampire on the PLANET. Most of those involve ingesting blood. She KNEW this before she found out about the Cullens' dietary habits.
- And yet apparently when she realized they were vampires... she didn't think that maybe, JUST MAYBE, vampires drank human blood.
- And for some reason, vampires drinking human blood is SHOCKING to her.
- Bella is as dumb as a bag of lobotomized hammers.
Edturd has angst of chagrin because Bella is so vewy vewy upset by the sight of vampires BEING VAMPIRES, but Bella is too dense to actually pick up on the emotions of her supposed soulmate. She's too busy being horny again.
As I stared at his too beautiful face, trying to understand the change, it suddenly struck me that I was really here, in Edward's arms, however fleetingly, and that we were not—at this exact moment—about to be killed.
"And it suddenly struck me that I was in his lap, and he had a raging boner."
Yup, that is literally how long Bella's reaction to the murder of innocent people takes. She blubs for a minute or two, demonizes someone who is at least smart enough to know what vampirism involves, and then forgets all about it. "Waaaaahh, those poor poor people... well, whatever. Edward is hawt. I wanna be a vampire too!"
Again, this reads like the editor forced Smeyer to write a page where Bella doesn't just think about herself, and it was shoved in there with no transitions because it didn't interest Smeyer.
"Is it really sick for me to be happy right now?" I asked. My voice broke twice.
Yes. Yes, it is. Not just because you're back humping the leg of your abusive ex-boyfriend, but because you just conveniently forgot about forty people being murdered... because you're horny.
So Edturd hugs her tightly and mumbles about "... And together" right in her face... and Bella concludes that hey, they still aren't together and he totally isn't into her.
"And, with any luck, we'll still be alive tomorrow."
There's still time for a fiery plane crash. Come on, God, don't let me down.
"The outlook is quite good," Alice assured me. She'd been so quiet, I'd almost forgotten her presence. "I'll see Jasper in less than twenty-four hours," she added in a satisfied tone.
Lucky Alice. She could trust her future.
Unless she decides to pick up some Manic Pixie Dream Girl ballet flats on the way home, and accidentally gets torched by a flame-blowing carnie. Hey, her visions are unreliable except when they're not.
So Bella and Edturd gaze into each other's eyes and sighing in a really nauseating way. I have no idea what Alice is doing, because she practically vanishes from the scene.
"And you look thirsty," I whispered back, studying the purple bruises under his black irises.
... he has bruises on his eyeballs?! CAN YOU EVEN DO THAT?
"Are you sure? I could sit with Alice," I offered, unwilling; I'd rather he killed me now than move one inch from where I was.
... sitting atop his giant boner.
Come on, when some guy has his ex-girlfriend sitting in his lap like that, there's only way to interpret such comments.
"Don't be ridiculous." He sighed; his sweet breath caressed my face. "I've never been in better control of that side of my nature than right now."
DON'T BE RIDICULOUS, you obnoxious prick? You spent the entire fucking first book talking about how you could barely restrain yourself from murdering her for her yummy blood. Why the FUCK should she know that you've now got superior control?
And why the hell does he suddenly have that control, huh? After months of being away, you would think it would be like dumping an alcoholic in a bar after several months in Utah! Sure, they might have gone cold turkey, but the sudden exposure might make them relapse!
Here in his arms, it was so easy to fantasize that he wanted me. I didn't want to think about his motivations now—about whether he acted this way to keep me calm while we were still in danger, or if he just felt guilty for where we were and relieved that he wasn't responsible for my death. Maybe the time apart had been enough that I didn't bore him for the moment. But it didn't matter. I was so much happier pretending.
Maybe his giant boner was just because he liked the smell of the air freshener! Maybe he was licking my ear because some blood had splattered on it! Maybe he was ripping off my panties because he accidentally dropped his car keys onto my crotch!
Seriously, Bella's whiny insistence that Edturd totally doesn't like her is just annoying.
But I guess it makes sense. This entire series is about telling, not showing. Why would Bella assume that ACTIONS might be more telling than words?
Oh, and Bella? Edturd is too much of a selfish rude prick to bother keeping ordinary humans calm, or feel guilty about them. He's never shown the slightest compassion or altruism. He was planning to kill innocent people earlier today, and he tried to get THOUSANDS killed. Why the fuck should I assume he would now suddenly care?
So Bella and Edturd gaze gooily at each other while Edturd has a conversation with Alice about going home. Even when they're having a contrived chick-flick moments, Mr. Perfect can't be assed to actually pay attention to Bawla.
Their voices were so quick and low that I knew Gianna couldn't understand.
And how would she know that? This woman spends ALL HER TIME around vampires. She'd be a lot more likely to get it than Bawla... especially since Bella has the brains of a lobotomized rock.
Also, I can't help but imagine them sounding like this:
Not as cool as Smeyer hoped.
It sounded like more theft would be involved, though.
... because now that they're no longer rushing to save anyone, and can go home at their leisure, they need to STEAL a car. Because renting one would be too much bother for "perfect" vampires.
"What was all that talk about singers?" Alice asked at one point.
"La tua cantante," Edward said. His voice made the words into music.
... in case you can't be assed to bother remembering that.
"Yes, that," Alice said, and I concentrated for a moment. I'd wondered about that, too, at the time.
I felt Edward shrug around me. "They have a name for someone who smells the way Bella does to me. They call her my singer—because her blood sings for me."
I want to find out where Smeyer gets ideas like that... so I can find that source, and destroy it. It would be like Lord of the Rings, except I would be trying to destroy a concentration of evil suckitude. And instead of a Dark Lord, I would be battling the influence of a crappy paranormal romance writer.
So they apparently hang around for hours, and Bella just lies there like a sack of fertilizer. Edward doesn't talk to her (after all, she's just a stupid childlike woman), but he apparently will kiss her randomly... which doesn't mean he's into her. No, he just feels guilty, or he's trying to keep her calm. That explains it.
Ugh, Smeyer's setup for "I always wuvved you, Bella!" is so nauseating. What does Edturd have to do for Bella to clue in? Fuck her right there?
Then Alec... I mean, Jaime comes walking and basically tells them to get the fuck out of Volterra. I can see why, considering what Edturd tried to do.
I wondered if her competence would be enough to save her.
Clearly competence has nothing to do with why someone gets turned.
I was relieved there was another way out; I wasn't sure if I could handle another tour through the underground.
... then why the hell didn't they take THAT route in?!
So the Italians are still partying up in the streets, which Edward hates because he loathes joy. Alice randomly rushes off to get Bella's bags because... I guess since Edturd is now humping Bella's leg, Bella has no more use for her.
I'd forgotten that I had access to a toothbrush. It brightened my outlook considerably.
Yes, clearly she's heartbroken over the loss of Twoo Wuv.
"She's stealing a car, too, isn't she?" I guessed.
He grinned. "Not till we're outside."
Have I mentioned lately that these people are miserable, rotten wretches? They could easily RENT a car, or even BUY one. But no, they're going to steal some random person's car. Why? Presumably so we'll know that they don't have to worry about petty laws or morals - after all, they're white and delightsome!
Edturd drags Bawla to where Alice has another stolen car. She doesn't seem to feel bad about stealing a car - she just apologizes because it's not an ugly tacky mess like the "Turbo."
She sighed. "I may have to acquire one of those legally. It was fabulous."
"I'll get you one for Christmas," Edward promised.
"Yellow," she told him.
This book is making me hate cars.
So even though Bella is exhausted, she refuses to sleep because she wants to keep ogling Edturd.
Alice bought Edward new clothes, too,
Why does he need all-new clothes? He still had his pants! I know this because otherwise we'd get loving descriptions of the sparklewang!
So they hop on a plane to Rome, which seems kind of stupid - Florence isn't a small city that has no planes heading to the US.
I asked the flight attendant if she could bring me a Coke.
"Bella," Edward said disapprovingly. He knew my low tolerance for caffeine.
- Wow, I wonder why Edturd has a problem with caffeine.
- Again, religious attitudes crammed into a story where they don't belong. Especially since none of the characters have ANY Mormon-like religious beliefs... but for some reason they're always disapproving of whatever super-religious Smeyer disapproves of.
- So even though they have no religion and no beliefs, sex be bad and caffeine be bad and swearing be bad...
- They're not even together, and he's STILL being a controlling douche who treats her like a four-year-old.
- "Don't make me smack you, young lady! You will drink your skim milk and not imbibe the ungodly Coke!"
- And of course, she doesn't just say, "Fuck off. You're not the boss of me."
Bella whines and comes up with the "I'll have bad dweams" excuse so he'll let her drink her weight in Coke. Then she wangsts about how she can't bring herself to ask them questions.
And I can't really communicate how much I do not care. I just want this fail of a book to be OVER.
Edward seemed perfectly content to hold me in his arms, his fingers tracing my face again and again. I touched his face, too. I couldn't stop myself, though I was afraid it would hurt me later, when I was alone again. He continued to kiss my hair, my forehead, my wrists… but never my lips, and that was good. After all, how many ways can one heart be mangled and still be expected to keep beating?
And the whole time, those inconsiderate HUMAN passengers kept calling, "Miss? Excuse me, that couple over there keeps noisily making out and humping on each other. The moans are keeping me awake!"
And yes, we're STILL supposed to buy that when he's acting like this, Bella totally believes that he doesn't care about her at all.
Vom. Stephenie Meyer's storytelling skills are as subtle as a brick in the eye.
So they arrive at the Seattle airport, and the Cullens are all waiting for them there because... presumably Bella needs more assurance about how wonderful she is.
Jasper was the first one I saw—he didn't seem to see me at all. His eyes were only for Alice. She went quickly to his side; they didn't embrace like other couples meeting there. They only stared into each other's faces, yet, somehow, the moment was so private that I still felt the need to look away.
... you know, this reminds me of another weird, weird, weird quality in the Twishite series. Have you noticed that NOBODY kisses or hugs or makes out or gropes each other EXCEPT Edward and Bella?
Supposedly all these people are soooooo in wuv that they are always having house-smashing sex and never even looking at another person, and they'll be eternally devastated if their one-and-only mate dies. Yet they NEVER show any affection to each other. EVER.
And no, kitty-staring at each other is NOT a sign of affection. It's a sign that someone wants to be fed, but can't use the can opener.
And because Esme loves Edturd so much... she greets Bella first and mumbles her thanks. THEN she bothers to speak to Edturd.
"You will never put me through that again," she nearly growled.
"I mean, we totally knew you were suicidal and left you completely alone for all those months! How DARE you actually try to commit suicide!"
Edward grinned, repentant. "Sorry, Mom."
Yes, that "mom" who is younger than him, and was Carlisle's second choice in a life companion.
"Thank you, Bella," Carlisle said. "We owe you."
"Then turn me into a vampire."
"I FORBID IT! I'M A MAN WITH A PENIS! YOU WILL OBEY ME!"
"Shut up, Edward."
So they drag Bella's mumbling carcass out to the car, where Emmett and Rosalie are waiting for them. Since Edturd is a massive prick, he immediately gets angry at Rosalie.
"Don't," Esme whispered. "She feels awful."
"She should," Edward said, making no attempt to keep his voice down.
"After all, she's blonde and has a vagina! She's the incarnation of evil! It can't possibly be Alice's fault for randomly blurting out stuff that she hasn't proven yet! It must be ROSALIE'S fault for not knowing that Alice was wrong! Which Alice never is!"
Edward continues being a dick to Rosalie, even though she's being very nice and even asks Bella's forgiveness and thanks her for saving Edturd's worthless ass. Hey, Smeyer? The person who comes across as nice and kind and unselfish here... is not your Sue or her bitchy boyfriend.
So they drag her home, and Charlie comes out yelling for her. Who can blame him? Bella went jaunting off without a word, and couldn't be assed to phone him and let him know what was going on.
"I can't believe you have the nerve to show your face here." Charlie bellowed at Edward, his voice much closer now.
"I'm so angry I forgot how to use commas! This book was edited by chipmunks!"
Bella keeps whining about how he should stop yelling at Edturd, and everybody ignores her. You could make a drinking game out of people ignoring Bella. For the center of the universe, she's pretty ignorable.
"Don't tell me what to do!" Charlie yelled. "Give her to me. Get your hands off her!"
"I treat my adult daughter like a piece of property who can't make her own decisions! Because she's female!"
Bella clings to Edturd like a human limpet, mumbling and drooling, while he drags her up the stairs to her room. Ah, Bella being a useless sack of shit who can't even walk on her own. I missed that... no, wait, I didn't.
The last thing I felt was Edward's cool hands prying my fingers loose from his shirt.
I hear the snap of him breaking my fingers, and he whispered, "This is an Armani shirt. No way am I letting you ruin it!"