Friday, October 16, 2009

I'm reading "Twilight," so you don't have to (ch. 18)

Our Story So Far

Here's my synopsis of Chapter 18 of Twilight, by Stephenie [sic] Meyer.

Chapter 18. The Hunt

Three Bad Vampires come out of the forest into the meadow where Bella is watching Edward and his Beautiful Sparkly Vampire family play Beautiful Sparkly Vampire baseball. The Bad Vampires aren't Beautiful and Sparkly, they're Scruffy. Their clothes are frayed, they have no shoes (WTF?), and the female Bad Scruffy Shoeless Vampire's hair is full of "leaves and debris from the woods." (Apparently, they have no combs either.)

Laurent, the Leader Of The Bad Scruffy Shoeless Vampires, is simultaneously olive-skinned and pale. He also has a French accent, but only "the slightest," so Stephenie [sic] Meyer doesn't need to try to reproduce it in the dialog. Victoria, the female Bad Scruffy Shoeless Vampire has red hair (with leaves in it) and shifty eyes. James, the other Bad Scruffy Shoeless Vampire is "nondescript" and "unobtrusive" and his eyes are "vigilant" though not shifty. (All this fading into the background, of course, will mean that he's the most important of the three. Mark my words.) For unexplained reasons, all three have "disturbing and sinister" burgundy-colored eyes instead of gold and black ones. And they crouch a lot.

Unlike the crouchy Bad Scruffy Shoeless Vampires, Carlisle The Wise Leader has an urbane stance. (No word on how wide it is.) He and Laurent The Leader Of The Bad Scruffy Shoeless Vampires talk. Laurent asks if they'll let them join in any vampire games. Carlisle The Wise Leader says maybe next time.

Carlisle The Wise Leader invites the Bad Scruffy Shoeless Vampires to the Beautiful Sparkly Vampire family's Beautiful Gloomy Mansion. The Bad Scruffy Shoeless Vampires are surprised to find that a) the Beautiful Sparkly Vampires live permanently in one place and b) have a house. (Most people would have surmised b as soon as they heard a, but these Bad Scruffy Shoeless Vampires seem just a tad slow on the uptake.)

Laurent moves his eyes appreciatively over Carlisle's refined appearance. (Laurent sometimes seems just a little too French if you ask me, know what I mean, wink-wink, nudge-nudge.)

They're all about to go, when the wind shifts, and James The Supposedly Unobtrusive But Really You Knew He's Going To Be The Most Important Bad Scruffy Shoeless Vampire catches Bella's delicious aroma. He lurches into a crouch, which makes Edward snarl, which makes Bella think, Ooh, scary! with chills that go not just down her spine, but from the crown of her head to the backs of her heels.

Laurent The Leader Of The Bad Scruffy Shoeless Vampires finally figures out that Bella is just a regular human and says, "You brought a snack?" (Credit where due, it's a good line -- the best in the book.) Carlisle The Wise leader says, "She's with us," and Laurent gives in and says it's cool, let's go see this permanent house of yours.

James The Extra-Bad Scruffy Shoeless Vampire Who Wants to Kill Bella (as he shall be known from now on) gives Laurent The Leader Of The Bad Scruffy Shoeless Vampires a "Dude, WTF!" look and then looks at Victoria The Female Bad Scruffy Shoeless Vampire With Leaves In Her Hair, which she responds to by being shifty-eyed some more.

They all leave. Edward, Emmett The Big One and Alice The Nice One go with Bella in the Monster Jeep. But Edward drives south, away from Forks. Bella says, Dude, where the hell are we going, and Edward says, Far away. Brave Sir Robin Edward has decided they should run away.

Bella stands up for herself for once and says, Take me home. She tries to unfasten her seat belt off-road harness, but of course the straps are too complicated for her. But just in case she eventually figures them out, Edward has Emmett The Big One secure her hands in his steely grasp.

Edward says, STFU and let me kidnap you in peace, bitch I have to do this, please be quiet. Bella says, If you do, my dad will call the FBI and your whole Beautiful Sparkly Vampire Family will have to run and hide. (I'm not real clear on why Bella's Dad wouldn't just call himself, since he's the Police Chief.)

Edward says, Whatever, we're good at running away. Bella says, I'm not worthy, and struggles violently, with total futility. Alice The Nice One says, Pull over a minute and let's talk this over. Edwards says, No way, James The Extra-Bad Scruffy Shoeless Vampire Who Wants to Kill Bella is a "Tracker." Everybody but Bella knows what that means. (I suspect that's a situation she finds herself in fairly often.)

A Tracker, we learn from the dialog, is a vampire that tracks people. (Apparently that means that instead of finding a person and eating them right away, the vampire lets them go and follows their trail and then eats them. Or something. Anyway, it's an excuse to have six more chapters instead of just having a big vampire fight, The End.)

Everybody argues with Edward, who keeps insisting on running away. Edward roars, hisses, snarls (blisteringly), and growls during the argument, but he loses anyway. He loses partly because Bella's Dad would be in danger, but mainly because Bella has come up with what everybody agrees is a great idea: she'll go home, tell her dad she hates him and is moving to Phoenix to live with her mom, and then she'll go to Phoenix. That will totally fool James The Extra-Bad Scruffy Shoeless Vampire Who Wants to Kill Bella, because he'll be sure that the one place Bella won't go is the place she tells everyone she's going. But just in case he does go to Phoenix, she won't actually live with her mom.

And only Alice The Nice One and Jasper The Other One will go to Phoenix with Bella. (Because when you have numerical superiority over an enemy, the only sensible thing to do is divide your forces so you won't outnumber them anymore. And by "sensible," I don't mean "sensible if you want to defeat the enemy," I mean "sensible if you want to drag things out for a few more chapters and put the heroine in greater jeopardy." And never mind that they just got done figuring out how to keep Bella's Dad out of danger and their plan puts Bella's Mom in danger instead.)

I'd forgotten how tired this book makes me.

(Check the pull-down menu under "Ongoing Series" in the left side-blog for more Twilight chapters.)


  1. And thanks for doing all the works! I'm enjoying this more than I will reading the book I'm pretty sure. :)

  2. Thanks for reading, Oakley! I appreciate it.


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