Hang in there kiddos, we’ve got a longer, epic-er entry than usual this week, featuring both the long-awaited end to chapter six as well as the entirety of chapter seven. Consider it my gift (?) to you after taking last week off to absorb as much information as I possibly could during the gamer’s Christmas of E3. It was a week full of much nerd glee for me. I appreciate your tolerance of the extended wait for this entry, but I can assure you that the wait was worth it. Interesting stuff lies ahead.
Bravely, after the progress-stopping stupidity that ended my foray into these dark lands, I solider onward in my valiant attempt to make it deeper into the dank, dark territory of Twilight.
Let’s hope the going is easier from here. I’m not sure I could survive another terror of language quite as bad as “making an effort to smolder at him”.
Shouldn’t have typed that. Started laughing again. Must stop before moving on. Bare with me.
There we go. I think we’re good. Let us venture forth before I burst into another giggle fit.
Man, I don’t even have the slightest idea what was going on. Oh well. Probably doesn’t matter.
Whilst recounting legends of yore: “‘Then there are the stories about the cold ones.’”
Well, I know people that have had plenty of beer in their day too, but they don’t make this big of deal out of it.
Further clarification: “‘You see, the cold ones are the natural enemies of the wolf—well, not the wolf, really, but the wolves that turn into men, like our ancestors. You would call them werewolves.’”
So Twilight now officially has werewolves before it has vampires. Congratulations, Steph, you have officially missed the point of writing a vampire novel.”
Ok, ok, if you want to get technical, I think “cold ones” is her half-assed special term for vampires, so they did sort of come first, but until she calls them vampires it doesn’t count in my book.
Extraordinarily confuzzled: So after reading the same set of paragraphs about four times, I think I have finally figured out what Steph was talking about with the whole “cold ones”/werewolves thing. This woman does not have a way with explanatory clarity.
Still waiting: I’m still waiting for the situation revolving around the Cullens (Edward’s group) to make sense. Does everyone know they’re vampires and just doesn’t like talking about it? Does everyone just think they’re weird? What’s the situation?
The fact that no one wants anything to do with them or even to talk about them says that people are in the know.
The fact that others (such as the one telling the story to Bella in the first place) treat it as a joke, says they just think the Cullens are eccentric weirdos. But then, why all the secrecy about the family from so many people?
*Sigh*. None of this crap makes any sense.
At long, long last: “‘And what are they?’ I finally asked. ‘What are the cold ones?’
He smiled darkly.
‘Blood drinkers,’ he replied in a chilling voice. ‘Your people call them vampires.’
Holy mother-loving goombas! We have vampires! Vampires have been had! The magical keyword word has been uttered! Actual vampires have been mentioned in this book about vampires!
It’s a frickin’ miracle. I truly never thought I would see the day.
This is truly a milestone in my great journey. The reaching of my first mention of vampire. I shall remember this day always.
Dangerous in groups: Now there’s four or so of these high-school nobodies in the same scene together. You have no idea how much effort it takes to keep all these people straight. Names just vanish out of my mind the second I’ve passed over them because I don’t actually have a character to attach them to.
This is so much more trouble than its worth.
Staying completely with the grain: “There was a basketball game on that [Charlie] was excited about, though of course I had no idea what was special about it, so he wasn’t aware of anything unusual in my face or tone.”
Well obviously she wouldn’t know anything about the game. I mean, she’s a girl. Girls don’t know anything about sports. I mean, what planet do we live on, Mars? Get a grip.
Strange Lullaby: So Bella just used a (conspicuously unnamed) band that had, her words, “a little too much bass and shrieking for my tastes” to go to sleep. The odd complexities of this character just never stop coming, do they?
Gutter mind: “His face was frightened as he yanked with all his strength against my resistance; I didn’t want to go into the dark.”
Taken out of context, I find something vaguely dirty about this statement.
That doesn’t say good things about me, does it?
Strange dreams: Bella is describing a dream now that sounds much like a terrible music video. She’s heading toward the beach because she knows she’ll find the sun there. Someone is tugging her toward the darkness of the forest. And, naturally, there are werewolves. And vampires.
Add some shrieking metal guitars, maybe a little too much bass, a hint of violins for good measure, and that dream is pretty much a script waiting to be filmed.
Enter Edward: Edward just appeared in the surreal dream sequence. Let me just give you a quick rundown of the descriptors stuck to him in a remarkably short span of sentences.
His skin was faintly glowing.
His eyes were black.
His eyes were, furthermore, dangerous.
His teeth were both sharp and pointed.
His voice was purring.
That’s one heck of a mishmash.
One the plus side, we have another small milestone on our hands. Edward himself, in all of his shifty-eyed glory, has finally been described, albeit inside of a dream sequence, as a vampire!
Break out the champagne everyone! There shall be much rejoicing.
Seven chapters in and we have finally learned (or at least strongly hinted at in dream form) what was on the first few sentences of the back cover of the book.
I’m not sure whether to be happy or incredibly depressed.
Now how much longer until Steph confronts the issue while Bella is actually awake? Any bets?
Another revelation: Aside from the above, another detail we have been blessed with only seven chapters in is that Bella’s hair is, apparently, braided.
Great. Just great. Now what little mental picture I had to this point has to be completely altered because of this delayed detail that shatters my fragile conception of this character.
Hey, when you have so few details to go on, every little precious bit counts for a lot more than in a situation with an actually, you know, well-formed character.
Bathroom adventures: “The shower didn’t last nearly as long as I hoped it would, though. Even taking the time to blow-dry my hair, I was soon out of things to do in the bathroom.”
Oh, there are always more things to do in the bathroom.
What the hell is wrong with me tonight?
Now it’s personal: I think Steph is trying to personally bore me to tears now. It’s not just a general sense of soul-crushing boredom anymore. It’s starting to really hit home.
Bella is using technology now.
She’s now in a scene where she is turning on her ancient computer, waiting for her outdated modem to – *shudder* – dial up, describing her conspicuously unnamed free Internet service (yeah, because those definitely still exist), detailing the many pop-up ads that she had to close in order to get on with things (Remember when those were still a problem? Good times.), and searching in her favorite search engine (also conspicuously unnamed).
This is a remarkably dated passage for how hard it tries not to date itself by leaving out all the brand names and such.
Nice try, Steph, but not quite.
Now she notices: It has already been well established that Bella is perhaps, shall we say, a little slow. More evidence to that effect: partway into chapter seven, Bella has finally decided to notice and state for herself that it is perhaps slightly odd, a little strange, bloody weird, if you will, that Edward’s eyes happen to shift color every few minutes or so.
Gee, ya think?
Waiting on pins and needles: As part of the long list of vampiric qualities she is researching, Bella happens to consider that vampires, as a general rule, are creatures of the night. Allergic to sun. Killed by the light.
Not exactly morning creatures, to say the least.
A slight issue, one might think.
Boy, I can’t wait to see how Steph deals with this one.
And she was doing so well, too: Just when I thought Twilight had finally gotten some sort of meager groove going, established some sort of light hope that Steph had finally figured out how to tell at least an acceptable chunk of her story through (cheesy, poorly-written) dialog and (weakly constructed, unsatisfying) scenes, she falls off the deep end again.
I’ve been listening to Bella think to herself, research vampires, explain about vampires, think some more, describe things, and other such expository nonsense for at least four or five pages now (since the beginning of chapter seven, in fact) and it shows no signs of letting up.
Old habits die hard, it would seem. I must have been delirious or something. I actually had myself thinking Steph’s writing was improving in some tiny little way.
Sunuvabitch: Give me a damn break here. How stupid does Steph think I am?
I kid you not, I just finished reading two paragraphs of a slow, detailed listing of every one of the stupendously obvious reasons that Edward might be a vampire that she’s been beating me over the head with for seven chapters now.
OMG his eyes are like all weird and stuff!
He talks all funny-like sometimes!
He’s totally like super strong and pale and pretty and cold and stuff!
Remember when he so totally didn’t show up to that blood testing day in class? You think that could maybe possibly have been important or something?
I freakin’ get it already, okay? It’s generally good practice to assume your reader has at least some small degree of intelligence, a rule of etiquette Steph doesn’t seem to be able to grasp. Frankly, the sheer magnitude of recapping being done here is insulting.
I don’t know what insufferable mental condition is keeping Bella from realizing what is going on, but I am able to function on the level of a normal human being and being doled out information like I’m some sort of chimp with a learning disorder is indescribably aggravating.
@#$%#$%&^!!!: “Could the Cullens be vampires?”
YES YES YES!!!
Yes, you stupid, slow, insufferable, inconsistent, obnoxious, stuck-up, little bitch of a character!
THEY’RE FUCKING VAMPIRES!
GET WITH THE PROGRAM!
Oh no, no, no, please no…: “Well, [the Cullens] were something. … So then — maybe. That would have to be my answer for now.”
Damn and blast and damn it all again!
You can’t let it slip away. We were so close. We had almost made it.
The realizations. The supreme obviousness of it all. It was right there.
Right there in front of me.
And now it’s gone again.
Gone, like so many hopes and dreams and respect for anyone who says this is even a semi-tolerable book.
That was a mean move, Steph. Truly a coldhearted tease.
I really don’t know how much more of this I can take.
And now, our regularly scheduled program: “My blood was electric in my veins.”
And now we find ourselves back where we started – back to the daily grind, back to horrible descriptions and awkward passages and never-ending accounts of Bella’s insufferably boring days at school and all the work and thoughts that go along with them.
Somehow, after a touch with what could have been, it all seems so much more depressing than it ever has before.
Okay, fine, I’ll give it a shot. I’ll try and get back in the swing of things. Let’s have one more try at that biting sarcasm I used to love so well.
Relax or die!: “I would think of nothing but the warmth on my skin [from the sun, mind you], I told myself severely.”
Oh, the things I’m going to do to you if you don’t relax… You don’t even want to now.
Now close your eyes and go to your happy place or your going to regret it!
Yeah, all right, that feels better. Maybe I can go on after all.
Farewell: After such an exciting, extended trip through Twilight in this installment, what more do I really have to say to close things up than in the next chapter, Bella and her forgettable not-really-friends are going SHOPPING!
Why, golly gee, I just can’t wait to tag along with a bunch of teen girls on a shopping trip. What more could I possibly ask from a book? I just can’t wait.
Until then, dear readers.