"I don't know if I have a choice anymore." [Edward's] voice was almost a whisper. "I was wrong–you're much more observant than I give you credit for." (8.203)
For Edward, being with Bella is a compulsion, rather than a choice. He initially tried "do the right thing" and stay away, but his attraction to her (and her blood?) is just too strong.
"Do you want to ride with me today?" [Edward] asked, amused by my expression as he caught me by surprise yet again. He was really giving me a choice – I was free to refuse, and part of him hoped for that. It was a vain hope. (10.6)
Edward is giving Bella the choice of whether to be with him or not, but is it really a choice? Bella seems to think she is absolutely incapable of resisting his "offer."
My decision was made, made before I'd ever consciously chosen, and I was committed to seeing it through. Because there was nothing more terrifying to me, more excruciating, than the thought of turning away from him. It was an impossibility. (12.148)
Bella speaks of her decision to spend the day with Edward on Saturday. She makes it sound like she has no conscious control over choosing to be with him – if he's available, she's in.
"It took everything I had not to jump up in the middle of that class full of children and–" [Edward] stopped abruptly, looking away. "When you walked past me, I could have ruined everything Carlisle has built for us, right then and there. If I hadn't been denying my thirst for the last, well, too many years, I wouldn't have been able to stop myself." (13.100)
Edward, like the other Cullens, has made a conscious choice not to prey on humans. It took every bit of willpower Edward had not to suck Bella's blood upon first meeting her. For him, it's a battle between his monstrous instincts and his more human conscience and intellect.
[Edward to Bella:] "But I resisted. I don't know how. I forced myself not to wait for you, not to follow you from the school. It was easier outside, when I couldn't smell you anymore, to think clearly, to make the right decision. I left the others near home – I was too ashamed to tell them how weak I was, they only knew something was very wrong – and then I went straight to Carlisle, at the hospital, to tell him I was leaving." (13.109)
Edward originally sees leaving the area as his only option if he's going to maintain his "vegetarian" diet. His longing for Bella's blood is overpowering, and after how hard he and the Cullens have worked to maintain their diet and blend into the human world, he doesn't want to destroy the life they've built.
"No, that's just Carlisle. He would never do that to someone who had another choice." The respect in [Edward's] voice was profound when he spoke of his father figure. "It is easier he says, though," he continued, "if the blood is weak." (14.22)
Unless a person is dying, Carlisle would never transform them into a vampire. He sees it as a last resort. Later, when Edward refuses to turn Bella into a vampire, we learn that he shares Carlisle's view on the matter.
"I don't think I have any choice but to kill him now," [Edward] muttered. (19.85)
Edward speaks of the tracker, James. If James isn't killed, he'll hunt Bella forever.
Carlisle looked gravely at Laurent. "I'm afraid you're going to have to make a choice." (19.110)
In Carlisle's mind, Laurent is either with the Cullens or against them.
I pushed the terror back as well as I could. My decision was made. It did no good to waste time agonizing over the outcome. I had to think clearly, because Alice and Jasper were waiting for me, and evading them was absolutely essential, and absolutely impossible. (21.76)
Bella sees no range of possibilities. Either she attempts to save her family, or she runs away and risks them getting hurt. Because she values her family so highly, she chooses to sacrifice herself.
[Carlisle to Edward:] "It's your decision, Edward, either way. I can't help you. I have to get this bleeding stopped here if you're going to be taking blood from her hand." (23.47)
Edward has a difficult decision to make: he can either let Bella transform into a vampire (which will naturally happen, since she's been bitten by James), or attempt to suck the venom out of her blood and save her human life. We know that Edward is determined for Bella to remain human, but we also know that he's terrified of coming near her blood, for fear of loosing control and killing her.
"Edward!" I screamed. I realized my eyes were closed again. I opened them, desperate to find his face. And I found him. Finally, I could see his perfect face, staring at me, twisted into a mask of indecision and pain. (23.49)
Edward's position is a tough one, and Bella sees that.
[Bella to Edward:] "Renée has always made choices that work for her – she'd want me to do the same. And Charlie's resilient, he's used to being on his own. I can't take care of them forever. I have my own life to live." (24.216)
Bella tries to convince Edward to turn her into a vampire. She explains that her parents have never considered her when making their life choices, and they'd want her to pursue what would make her happy. Do you buy this argument? Imagine Bella as a young vampire – would it be safe for her to be near her parents? Would she even remember her human past? Has she truly thought through the implications of her decision?
"You can't really believe that I would give in so easily," [Edward] said with a sour edge to his mocking tone.
[Bella:] "A girl can dream."
His eyebrows rose. "Is that what you dream about? Being a monster?"
"Not exactly," I said, frowning at the word choice. Monster, indeed. "Mostly I dream about being with you forever." (Epilogue.199-202)
Bella has decided that she wants to be with Edward forever, and the only way to do that is by becoming a vampire. Edward, however, has had decades to think about human life and vampirism, and he is absolutely against Bella becoming a "monster."
"Did you ever think that maybe my number was up the first time, with the van, and that you've been interfering with fate?" I speculated, distracting myself. [...]
"That wasn't the first time," [Edward] said, and his voice was hard to hear. I stared at him in amazement, but he was looking down. "Your number was up the first time I met you." (8.213, 214)
Bella seems to think that her life isn't only influenced by choices, but also by fate. Here she implies that she might have been "destined" to be killed by Tyler's van, and every minute she continues to live is just bonus time. Edward, however, worries that his choice to remain in her life will eventually mean her death. At the end of the novel, Edward contemplates leaving Bella because that might be "what's best" (24.273) for her.
[Edward to Bella:] "You were right – I'm definitely fighting fate trying to keep you alive." (9.177)
Is Edward is fighting fate? Does Bella simply have a propensity for trouble, or do the choices she and Edward make put her in danger? If she does have a natural propensity for trouble, is Edward's falling in love with her another example of trouble, similar to Tyler's van skidding toward her?
"Why is that," my voice shook, embarrassing me, "do you think?"
I felt the tremor of this breath on my neck as [Edward] laughed. "Mind over matter." (14.165-6)
Edward hopes his mind can control what his natural instincts tell him to do.
[Edward to Bella :] "That's a good question, and you are not the first one to ask it. The others – the majority of our kind who are quite content with our lot – they, too, wonder at how we live. But you see, just because we've been…dealt a certain hand…it doesn't mean that we can't choose to rise above – to conquer the boundaries of a destiny that none of us wanted. To try to retain whatever essential humanity we can." (14.231)
Most vampires do not fight fate. They follow their natural instincts and feed on humans. The Cullens, however, make the conscious choice not to harm humans. It's hard, but in return for their sacrifices, they have clear consciences.
[Edward to Bella:] "Carlisle knew what his father would do. The bodies would be burned – anything infected by the monster must be destroyed. Carlisle acted instinctively to save his own life." (15.247)
After Carlisle became a vampire, his fate was set. His family would hate what he'd become and kill him – they'd see no other choice.
[Edward to Bella:] "I know that at some point, something I tell you or something you see is going to be too much. And then you'll run away from me, screaming as you go." [Edward] smiled half a smile, but his eyes were serious. "I won't stop you. I want this to happen, because I want you to be safe. And yet, I want to be with you. The two desires are impossible to reconcile…" He trailed off, staring at my face. Waiting. (16.52)
Edward feels fate has dealt him a bad hand – a total catch-22. Edward decides the best compromise is to let himself be near Bella, and try his hardest not to think of her as a "piece of meat." However, since he seems to be unable to leave her, he hopes that she will make the decision herself.
[Edward to Bella:] "They're still there." He shrugged. "As they have been for who knows how many millennia. Carlisle stayed with them only for a short time, just a few decades. He greatly admired their civility, their refinement, but they persisted in trying to cure his aversion to his 'natural food source,' as they called it. They tried to persuade him, and he tried to persuade them, to no avail. At that point, Carlisle decided to try the New World. He dreamed of finding others like himself. He was very lonely, you see." (16.62.1-9)
Carlisle is defined by his choice to maintain his human-free diet. Most vampires, as Edward tells Bella, have a completely different philosophy from Carlisle's. Though Carlisle's decision has led to isolation, he has stuck to what he believes is right.
"I thought I would be exempt from the …depression…that accompanies a conscience." (16.80.2) Edward to Bella
Edward had gone through a "teen" rebellion but felt bad about his rebellious choices (i.e., breaking the Cullen diet).
[Alice to Bella and Jasper:] "It means the tracker's plans have changed. He's made a decision that will lead him to the mirror room, and the dark room." (20.112)
The tracker has changed his mind. Whenever a person makes a new choice, the future changes, as does Alice's vision of what's to come.
Slowly, slowly, my thoughts started to break past that brick wall of pain. To plan. For I had not choices now but one: to go to the mirrored room to die. I had no guarantees, nothing to give to keep my mom alive. I could only hope that James would be satisfied with winning the game, that beating Edward would be enough. Despair gripped me; there was no way to bargain, nothing I could offer or withhold that could influence him. But I still had no choice. I had to try. (21.75)
Bella knows her life is over. She hopes that James will be happy enough with her that he won't kill her mother. On a separate note, Bella frequently claims that she has "no choice." Do you agree? Does she truly have no other options?
I was determined not to lose myself at this point, now that my plan was successfully completed. There was no point in indulging in more terror, more anxiety. My path was set. I had just to follow it now. (22.60)
Bella is following what she believes to be her destiny to James and death. Now, it's all about tactics.
"Edward, you have to do it." It was Alice's voice, close by my head. Cool fingers brushed at the wetness in my eyes.
"No!" [Edward] bellowed. (23.38-39)
What's going on here? Is Alice is trying to convince Edward to let Bella become a vampire? He seems mighty upset by the idea. All the same, Edward has a decision to make: he can either let Bella become a vampire, or try to save her by sucking out her venom-infected blood.
[Edward] heard the change in my tone. His eyes tightened. "I don't seem to be strong enough to stay away from you, so I suppose that you'll get your way…whether it kills you or not," he added roughly. (24.188)
Edward feels that he has a choice to make. He believes that it would be best for Bella if he left her, but he's unable to make himself walk away from her. Does this make him weak?
[Bella to Edward:] "In what parallel dimension would I ever have gone to prom of my own free will? If you weren't a thousand times stronger than me, I would never have let you get away with this?" (Epilogue.157)
Edward is trying to do what he thinks is best for Bella. He wants her to live a full, human life despite being with him.
[Edward to Bella:] "I brought you to the prom," he said slowly, finally answering my question, "because I don't want you to miss anything. I don't want my presence to take anything away from you, if I can help it. I want you to be human. I want your life to continue as it would have if I'd died in nineteen-eighteen like I should have." (Epilogue.156)
Edward has a different life philosophy than Bella. He wants her to enjoy her average, human life and not miss anything.
[Bella to Edward:] "I decided it didn't matter." I whispered. (9.73)
True love means not caring if your boyfriend is a vampire. At this point, though, do you think Bella understands the full implications of Edward being a vampire?
[Edward:] "It didn't matter?" His tone made me look up – I had finally broken through his carefully composed mask. His face was incredulous, with just a hint of the anger I'd feared.
[Bella:] "No," I said softly. "It doesn't matter me what you are."
[Edward:] A hard, mocking edge entered his voice. "You don't care if I'm a monster? If I'm not human?" (9.74-76)
Edward cannot believe Bella doesn't care that he is a vampire. Because she loves him, she doesn't consider him a monster.
About three things I was absolutely positive. First, Edward was a vampire. Second, there was a part of him – and I didn't know how potent that part might be-that thirsted for my blood. And third, I was unconditionally and irrevocably in love with him. (9.236)
For Bella, there is no turning back now. Her relationship with Edward has developed quite quickly – do you agree with Bella that it is truly love she feels, or is it just infatuation?
[Edward to Bella:] "Hadn't you noticed? I'm breaking all the rules now." (10.28)
What are the rules that Edward is breaking? Well, he's going against the rules of nature by falling in love with a creature that should be his prey. He may also be breaking family rules by revealing his true self to Bella, tempting himself by getting close to a human, and risking the exposure of the whole Cullen family.
[Bella to Jessica:] "Too much," I whispered back. " More than he likes me. But I don't see how I can help that." (10.109)
Bella tells Jessica she likes Edward more than he likes her – she's still unsure of how much Edward cares for her. And by saying that she likes Edward "too much," she's acknowledging to herself that her interest in him may lead to danger.
[Edward to Bella :] "Do you truly believe that you care more for me than I do for you?" he murmured, learning closer to me as he spoke, his dark golden eyes piercing. (10.152)
Edward counters Bella's belief that she likes him more than he likes her. Do you think that they care for each other equally?
[Edward to Bella:] "So you're worried about the trouble it might cause me – if you don't come home?" His voice was still angry, and bitingly sarcastic. (12.225)
Bella risks her own safety to continue her relationship with Edward. Instead of thinking of her own well-being, she's worried about making sure Edward doesn't get in trouble if their relationship "ends badly."
[Edward to Bella:] "Isabella." He pronounced my full name carefully, then playfully ruffled my hair with his free hand. A shock ran through my body at his casual touch. "Bella, I couldn't live with myself if I ever hurt you. You don't know how it's tortured me." He looked down, ashamed again. "The thought of you, still, white, cold…to never see you blush scarlet again, to never see that flash of intuition in your eyes when you were though my pretenses...it would be unendurable." He lifted his glorious, agonized eyes to mine. "You are the most important thing to me now. The most important thing to me ever." (13.125)
Here Edward declares his love. He's just told Bella about how conflicted he feels – how he does thirst for her blood as well as for her company. But here he seems to be making a vow never to hurt her, and never to let his vampire instincts get out of control. When he uses Bella's full given name, we know he's serious.
[Edward to Bella:] "Isn't it supposed to be like this?" He smiled. "The glory of first love, and all that. It's incredible, isn't it, the difference between reading about something, seeing it in pictures, and experiencing it?" (14.194)
Like Bella, Edward is experiencing first love. The intensity of his emotions seems to humanize him.
[Edward to Bella:] "And then," he whispered, "as you were sleeping you said my name." (14.199-200)
Bella thinks of Edward even in her sleep. He seems to believe more deeply that she cares for him knowing that he's constantly in her subconscious thoughts.
[Edward to Bella:] "I won't leave you." His voice has the seal of a promise in it. (14.263)
Do you believe Edward will keep this promise? In Chapter Twenty-Four, he seems to be reconsidering, saying that he'll stay with Bella as long as it's what's best for her.
[Edward to Bella:] His gold eyes grew very soft. "You said you loved me." (15.25)
Bella is still somewhat hesitant to communicate her emotions, but she does love Edward – she says so in her sleep.
[Edward to Bella:] "You are my life now," he answered simply. (15.30)
This is about as strong a statement one can make about love.
[Bella:] "Will you be?" I asked, suddenly anxious. "Will you really be here?"
[Edward:] "As long as you want me," he assured me.
[Bella:] "I'll always want you," I warned him. "Forever." (15.80-82)
Bella hopes Edward stays with her forever. This sets up their conflict about immortality. Bella knows that the only way she can be with Edward is to become a vampire, but he wants her to remain human.
[Edward to Bella:] "Having you know about everything, not needing to keep secrets from you. But I didn't expect to feel more than that. I like it. It makes me…happy." (16.95)
Edward is excited that he can share everything with Bella. He doesn't have to hide his sparkling skin, his speed, or anything else from her. But would you agree that he doesn't keep any secrets from her?
[Bella to Edward:] "I love you," I said in a low, intense voice. "I will always love you, no matter what happens now." (19.10)
Worried that she might be killed by James, Bella declares her love to Edward. She never used to be so open with her feelings.
[Edward to Bella:] "Bella, don't you dare waste time worrying about me. Your only concern is keeping yourself safe and – please, please – trying not to be reckless." (19.92)
Edward is concerned that James will hurt Bella, and he has a hard time letting her leave his sight.
But Edward was at my side at once. He caught me up in his iron grip, crushing me to him. He seemed unaware of his watching family as he pulled my face to his, lifting my feet off the floor. For the shortest second, his lips were icy and hard against mine. Then it was over. He set me down, still holding my face, his glorious eyes burning into mine. (19.147)
Edward says goodbye before Bella flees Forks.
[Bella:] "Come and get it, then," I challenged.
[Edward:] "Soon, as soon as I possibly can. I will make you safe first." His voice was hard.
[Bella:] "I love you," I reminded him.
[Edward:] "Could you believe that, despite everything I've put you through, I love you, too?" (20.139-143)
From this conversation we can tell that Edward continues to feel conflicted about his relationship with Bella. He believes that his involvement with her puts her in danger, and therefore thinks that he may not be acting in a loving manner by continuing his relationship with her. This concern comes out more powerfully in Chapter Twenty-Four when Bella is in the hospital.
[Edward to Bella:] "Bella, you're going to be fine. Can you hear me, Bella? I love you." (23.22)
Bella has been wounded by James, and upon waking up, the first voice Bella hears is Edward's.
[Edward to Bella:] I sighed without returning my gaze. "It was impossible…to stop," he whispered. "Impossible. But I did." He looked up finally, with a half smile. "I must love you." (24.24)
Edward was nervous he would not be able to stop once he tasted Bella's blood. Out of love for Bella, though, he was able to restrain himself.
[Bella:] "Don't leave me," I begged in a broken voice.
[Edward:] "I won't," he promised. "Now relax before I call the nurse back to sedate you." (24.165-166)
Bella begs Edward not to leave her. Does she cling too strongly to Edward, or is her love for him healthy and normal? Do you think that Edward will keep his promise to remain with her?
[Bella:] "Why did you say that?" I whispered, trying to keep my voice from shaking. "Are you tired of having to save me all the time? Do you want me to go away?" […]
[Edward:] "No, I don't want to be without you, Bella, of course not. Be rational. And I have no problem with saving you, either – if it weren't for the fact that I was the one putting you in danger...that I'm the reason that you're here."
[Bella:] "Yes, you are the reason." I frowned. "The reason I'm here – alive." (24.175, 176-177)
Edward continues to feel conflicted about whether or not he should remain with Bella. He feels that his presence constantly puts her in danger. In his mind, if he loves her, he should leave her in order to keep her safe. Bella clearly has a different opinion on the matter.
[Bella:] "I'll be the first to admit that I have no experience with relationships," I said. "But it just seems logical…a man and woman have to be somewhat equal…as in, one of them can't always be swooping in and saving the other one. They have to save each other equally." (24.194)
Edward can't always be saving Bella from harm's way – she doesn't want to be a damsel in distress all the time. She feels they need more equality in their relationship for it to work. In other words, Bella wants to be a vampire, too.
[Edward:] "Bella." His fingers lightly traced the shape of my lips. "I will stay with you – isn't that enough?" (Epilogue.204)
Edward again commits to staying with Bella, and thinks that his presence and love should be enough to satisfy her. But she wants to have his presence and love forever.
[Bella:] I touched his face. "Look," I said. "I love you more than everything else in the world combined. Isn't that enough?"
[Edward:] "Yes, it is enough," he answered smiling. "Enough for forever."
And he leaned down to press his cold lips once more to my throat. (Epilogue.210-212)
Edward thinks that Bella's love for him is enough "forever," meaning that he doesn't need or want her to become a vampire. This contrasts with Bella's comment that Edward loving her and being with her is only "enough for now" – eventually, she wants to become a vampire and share eternity with him.
[Edward to Bella:] "It would be more…prudent for you not to be my friend," he explained. "But I'm tired of trying to stay away from you, Bella." (4.165)
Edward thinks he is evil and the best thing for Bella is for him to stay away from her. However, he seems to be giving into temptation and allowing himself to be close to her.
[Edward:] "I decided as long as I was going to hell, I might as well do it thoroughly." (5.18)
Though Edward is teasing, he seems to genuinely think he's an inherently evil being, damned to hell no matter how he behaves.
[Edward to Bella:] "Yes – giving up trying to be good. I'm just going to do what I want now, and let the chips fall where they may." (5.29)
Is Edward really "giving up trying to be good"? If he were, wouldn't that mean he'd be feasting on Bella's blood? Even when he thinks he's being bad, Edward still isn't acting like the average "evil," human-eating vampire.
[Edward to Bella:] "What if I'm not a superhero? What if I'm the bad guy?" He smiled playfully, but his eyes were impenetrable. (5.110)
Edward believes he's a bad guy. He seems to think that he's defined by his biological nature (as a vampire) rather than his personal choices.
Stregoni benefici: An Italian vampire, said to be on the side of goodness, and a mortal enemy of all evil vampires. (7.38.1)
Through internet research, Bella learns there are "good" vampires.
[Edward:] "It didn't matter?" His tone made me look up – I had finally broken through his carefully composed mask. His face was incredulous, with just a hint of the anger I'd feared.
[Bella:] "No," I said softly. "It doesn't matter me what you are."
[Edward:] A hard, mocking edge entered his voice. You don't care if I'm a monster? If I'm not human?" (9.74-76)
Edward sees himself as a monster, and is astonished that Bella doesn't seem to care. Does she not care because she loves him unconditionally, or because she doesn't understand the full implications of Edward being a vampire?
[Edward to Bella:] "I don't want to be a monster." (9.123)
Edward seems to think that he has no choice about being good or evil – he is a monster. What do you think makes a monster: a person's (or creature's) nature or actions? What characters in Twilight do you consider monsters?
[Edward to Bella:] "And for all that," he continued, "I'd have fared better if I had exposed us all at that first moment, than if now, here – with no witnesses and nothing to stop me – I were to hurt you." (13.123.1)
Edward is concerned for Bella. He wants people to know when she is with him because he doesn't trust himself.
[Edward to Bella:] "[Carlisle] was the only son of an Anglican pastor. His mother died giving birth to him. His father was an intolerant man. As the Protestants came into power, he was enthusiastic in his persecution of Roman Catholics and other religions. He also believed very strongly in the reality of evil. He led hunts for witches, werewolves…and vampires." (15.240)
Edward speaks of Carlisle's father, who believed that witches, werewolves, and vampires were inherently evil. Carlisle, however, seems to have proven his father wrong – vampires can be "good."
[Edward to Bella:] "I can't adequately describe the struggle; it took Carlisle two centuries of torturous effort to perfect his self-control. Now he is all but immune to the scent of human blood, and he is able to do the work he loves without agony. He finds a great deal of peace there, at the hospital…" (16.57)
Edward speaks of Carlisle, who seems to have won his internal battle between good and evil. He can work happily at the hospital – unthinkable for anyone else in the Cullen family, with all that human blood.
[Carlisle to Edward:] "See if you can suck the venom back out. The wound is fairly clean." As Carlisle spoke, I could feel more pressure on my head, something poking and pulling at my scalp. The pain of it was lost in the pain of the fire. (23.43)
Edward has to fight his more primal, or in his mind "evil," instincts, in order to save Bella. All his practice struggling with the evil within himself has led up to this moment.
[Bella:] "Good." He hadn't promised, though – a fact that I had not missed. The panic was only barely contained; I had no strength left to control the anger. "You told me how you stopped…now I want to know why," I demanded. […]
Edward's eyes seemed to turn flat black, and I remembered that this was something he'd never intended me to know. Alice must have been preoccupied by the things she'd learned about herself or she'd been very careful with her thoughts around him – clearly he'd had no idea that she'd filled me in on the mechanics of vampire conversions. (24.189, 192)
Bella wants to know why Edward didn't just let her change into a vampire after James had bitten her. Though Edward considers himself to be a "monster," Bella wants to become like him so they can be together forever.
[Edward: "You have saved me," he said quietly.
[Bella:] "I can't always be Lois Lane," I insisted. "I want to be Superman, too." "You don't' know what you're asking." His voice was soft; he stared intently at the edge of the pillowcase.
"I think I do."
"Bella, you don't know. I've had almost ninety years to think about this, and I'm still not sure." (24.196-200)
Notice how Bella says that she wants to be "Superman, too." This reminds us of the time when Edward said to Bella, "What if I'm not a superhero? What if I'm the bad guy?" (5.109) Clearly, Bella has decided that Edward is a superhero (Superman, after all, is not a "bad guy"), and she wants to be a superhero as well. She doesn't think that vampires are inherently evil. Edward, however, isn't so sure. Unless Bella is on her deathbed and has no other options, Edward isn't keen on turning her into a vampire.
[Edward:] "Bella, we're not having this discussion anymore. I refuse to damn you to an eternity of night and that's the end of it." […]
[Bella:] "If you think that's the end, then you don't know me very well," I warned him. "You're not the only vampire I know." (24.231)
Edward seems certain that vampires are evil beings and are "damned." Bella refuses to agree, and threatens to get one of his family members to transform her.
I stared without breathing across the long room, into the dark eyes of the hunter, and he looked pleasantly back at me. (Preface.2)
The novel opens with a frightening scene, setting the tone for the story.
[Edward to Bella:] "Do you think I could be scary?" (5.281)
Edward can't read Bella's mind, but he seems to be trying to find out what she thinks of him. Does she like him? Does she think he's scary? Would her family approve of him? Keep in mind that at this point, Bella doesn't know that Edward is a vampire.
There was one thing I was sure of, if I was sure of anything. The dark Edward in my dream last night was a reflection only of my fear of the world Jacob had spoken, and not Edward himself. Even so, when I'd screamed out in terror at the werewolf's lunge, it wasn't fear for the wolf that brought the cry of "no" to my lips. It was fear that he would be harmed – even as he called to me with the sharp-edged fangs, I feared for him. (7.60)
Even though she thinks he is likely dangerous, and probably a vampire, Bella cares more about Edward's safety than her own.
I was being herded. (8.47)
Walking through the streets of Port Angeles, Bella is cornered by four men. She's alone and beginning to feel afraid.
[Edward to Bella:] "I'm not always the most dangerous thing out there. Let's leave it at that." (9.197)
What is it that Edward thinks is so dangerous? Is this foreshadowing the situation with James? Do we ever find out what might be out there in the woods?
[Edward to Bella:] "If that were it, I would take you tonight," he said, his voice cutting. "You need a healthy dose of fear. Nothing could be more beneficial to you." (10.242)
Edward tries to warn Bella about himself. He thinks she doesn't have a strong enough self-preservation instinct.
[Bella to Edward:] "I was wishing that I could believe that you were real. And I was wishing that I wasn't afraid." (13.20)
Bella doesn't fear Edward in the way she probably should – she never seems to be worried that he will harm her. Instead, Bella fears that Edward is just a dream. She's more frightened of losing him than of being near him.
I sat without moving, more frightened of him than I had ever been. I'd never seen him so completely freed of that carefully cultivated façade. He'd never been less human…or more beautiful. Face ashen, eyes wide, I sat like a bird locked in the eyes of a snake. (13.38)
Bella is mesmerized and a tad afraid of Edward in the meadow. When he acts like his true vampire self, he's intimidating.
[Edward to Bella:] "Don't be afraid," he murmured, his velvet voice unintentionally seductive. "I promise." He hesitated. "I swear not to hurt you." He seemed more concerned with convincing himself than me. (13.40)
Edward tries to reassure Bella (and himself) that he won't hurt her. Should Bella believe him? Should he trust himself?
[Bella to Edward:] "I was afraid...because, for, well, obvious reasons, I can't stay with you. And I'm afraid that I'd like to stay with you, much more than I should." (13.56)
Bella's strong feelings for Edward scare her – she's afraid that her feelings for him might lead her to do something stupid. Though she intellectually knows Edward is dangerous, her emotions drive her to want to be near him.
[Edward to Bella:] "It's not only your company I crave! Never forget that. I never forget I am more dangerous to you than I am to anyone else." (13.64)
Edward tries to warn Bella. He wants her to be afraid. Do you really think that Edward is more dangerous to her than anyone else? Do you ever see any hints that he might actually hurt her? Is he really more dangerous to Bella than James is?
[Edward to Bella:] He frowned down at my hands, releasing me from the force of his stare. "And then, as I tried to rearrange my schedule in a pointless attempt to avoid you, you were there – in that close, warm little room, the scent was maddening. I so very nearly took you then. There was only one other frail human there – so easily dealt with." (13.107)
When Bella first met Edward, she had no idea how much she should have feared him.
[Edward to Bella:] "And you're worried, not because you're headed to meet a houseful of vampires, but because you think those vampires won't approve of you, correct?" (15.110)
Bella is afraid to meet Edward's family – but not because they might eat her. Again, Edward feels that Bella doesn't have a strong enough self-preservation instinct.
[Bella to Edward:] "I hate to burst your bubble, but you're really not as scary as you think you are. I don't find you scary at all, actually." I lied casually. (16.100)
Bella pretends she has no fear of Edward at all. Sometimes we get the feeling that Bella likes being a little frightened by Edward, that it thrills her. What do you think? Would she prefer that he weren't at all dangerous?
The whole time I'd been rooted in place, terrified into absolute immobility. (18.41)
Bella is literally scared stiff by the presence of James. This is the first time that Bella has met a man-eating vampire, and the experience is truly terrifying.
[Edward:] "Listen to me, Alice. I saw his mind. Tracking is his passion, his obsession – and he wants her, Alice – her specifically. He begins the hunt tonight." (18.69)
Everyone is horrified of James. It's not that Edward is frightened for himself, though. He's worried about what James might do to Bella.
[Jasper to Bella:] "Bella, Bella, stop," he interrupted me, his words pouring out so quickly they were hard to understand. "You're worrying about all the wrong things, Bella. Trust me on this – none of us are in jeopardy. You are under too much strain as it is; don't add to it with wholly unnecessary worries. Listen to me!" he ordered, for I had looked away. "Our family is strong. Our only fear is losing you." (20.49)
Jasper tries to soothe Bella's worries. He claims his family's biggest fear is losing her. Do believe Jasper when he says that the Cullens aren't in danger?
I held up the phone to my ear. My joints were frozen with terror – I couldn't unbend my fingers to drop it. (21.72)
Bella has just gotten off the phone with James. This is real terror. Bella's fear is heightened when she's worried for her mother's safety.
[Edward to Bella:] "Afraid of a needle," he muttered to himself under his breath, shaking his head. "Oh, a sadistic vampire, intent on torturing her to death, sure, no problem, she runs off to meet him. An IV, on the other hand…" (24.53)
Bella fears needles more than vampires. At least, right at this moment.
[Edward to Bella:] "That's not the worst part, though," he continued to whisper. He acted as if I' hadn't spoken. "Not seeing you there on the floor…crumpled and broken." His voice was choked. "Not thinking I was too late. Not even hearing you scream in pain – all those unbearable memories that I'll carry with me for the rest of eternity. No, the very worst feeling...knowing that I couldn't stop. Believing that I was going to kill you myself." (24.181)
Edward constantly fears for Bella's safety. Though he is scared when James decides to track Bella, he's most worried about himself hurting Bella.
[Edward to Bella:] "When someone wants to kill you, you're brave as a lion – and then when someone mentions dancing…" (Epilogue.48)
Edward points out how ridiculous it is that Bella is afraid of dancing. When she's not in any real danger, her courage seems to drain away.
And If I couldn't find a niche in a school with three thousand people, what were my chances here? (1.61.3)
At her large school in Phoenix, Bella always felt like an outsider. If she couldn't find any friends there, how will she in tiny Forks? Why do you think it is that Bella doesn't fit in? Is she's simply born to be among vampires instead of humans?
Sometimes I wondered if I was seeing the same things through my eyes that the rest of the world was seeing through theirs. Maybe there was a glitch in my brain. (1.62)
Bella feels like she just doesn't fit in. Little does she know, her feelings of isolation make her quite similar to the Cullens.
They were all looking away – away from each other, away from the other students, away from anything in particular as far as I could tell. (1.119)
Bella notices the Cullen siblings and how isolated they are, totally separated from everyone else in Forks High.
I felt a surge of pity and relief. Pity because, as beautiful as they were, they were outsiders, clearly not accepted. Relief that I wasn't the only newcomer here, and certainly not the most interesting by any standard. (1.138)
Bella feels instant alignment with the Cullen family because of they have isolation in common.
It seemed excess for them to have both looks and money. But as far as I could tell, life worked that way most of the time. It didn't look as if it bought them any acceptance here. (2.12)
According to Bella, money does not buy acceptance, and neither does attractiveness, as evidenced by the Cullen kids. However, Bella seems to be assuming that the Cullens want to fit in. Do you think that's the case? Could they fit in if that's what they wanted?
The isolation must be their desire. I couldn't imagine any door that wouldn't be open to that degree of beauty. (2.13)
Bella notes that isolation might be a choice for the Cullens family. She also puts a great deal of emphasis on looks. Do you think that if the Cullens were open about being vampires, their good looks would still help them be accepted in the community?
In a lot of ways, living with Charlie was like having my own place, and I found myself reveling in the aloneness instead of being lonely. (3.5)
There is a difference between isolation and loneliness. Although Bella is isolated, she claims she isn't lonely. Do you believe her?
Driving to school, I distracted myself from my fear of falling and my unwanted speculations about Edward Cullen by thinking about Mike and Eric, and the obvious difference in how teenage boys responded to me here. I was sure I looked exactly the same as I had in Phoenix…Maybe it was just that the boys back home had watched me pass through all the awkward phases of adolescence and still thought of me that way. Perhaps it was because I was a novelty here, where novelties were few and far between. Possibly my crippling clumsiness was seen as endearing rather than pathetic, casting me as a damsel in distress. Whatever the reason, Mike's puppy dog behavior and Eric's apparent rivalry with him were disconcerting." I wasn't sure if I didn't prefer being ignored. (3.9)
Bella speculates on why the boys in Forks are interested in her, given that she was ignored back in Phoenix. She seems to find the attention unwelcome. Is that because she truly likes being ignored, or because she's not interested in Mike and Eric? After all, it seems that she wants to be noticed by Edward.
Edward was never surrounded by crowds of curious bystanders eager for his firsthand account. People avoided him as usual. (4.6)
Bella notes that even after the accident where Edward was the hero, everyone ignores him. Why do you think that's the case?
[Jessica to Bella:] "You Know, I've never seen Edward sit with anyone but his family before. That was weird." (6.7)
It's a novel action for Edward to sit with someone outside of his family. That's probably because none of the Cullens ever invited a human to their lunch table. Edward is now opening up to a human and ending his voluntary isolation.
[Bella to Edward:] "My mind doesn't work right? I'm a freak?" The words bothered me much more than they should – probably because his speculation hit home. I'd always suspected as much, and it embarrassed me to have it confirmed. (9.18)
Edward thinks himself strange because he can read minds, but Bella is the one who feels isolated because he can't hear her voice. Here, we have two people, who have previously felt lonely and isolated, coming together.
[Edward:] "Don't you see, Bella? It's one thing for me to make myself miserable, but a wholly other thing for you to be so involved." (9.157)
Edward considers exile before being with Bella – he would rather live a lonely life than put her at risk.
[Bella to Charlie:] "Dad, you're doing a great job." I smiled, hoping my relief didn't show. "I've never minded being alone – I'm too much like you." (12.63)
Rather than feeling isolated and lonely, Bella seems to enjoy alone time, a personality trait that she has inherited from her father.
[Edward to Bella:] "Well…." He contemplated for a moment. "It was just how close you were. Most human instinctively shy away from us, are repelled by our alienness…I wasn't expecting you to come so close… And the smell of your throat." He stopped short, looking to see if he'd upset me. (13.140)
Despite vampires being attractive in many ways, most humans separate themselves from the vampires out of instinctual fear. Yet, Bella is naturally drawn to Edward. What does that say about her?
[Edward to Bella:] His soft voice interrupted my thoughts. "[Carlisle] acted from loneliness. That's usually the reason behind the choice. I was the first in Carlisle's family, thought he found Esme soon after. She fell from a cliff. They brought her straight to the hospital morgue, though, somewhere her heart was still beating." (14.20)
Edward is speaking of Carlisle and why he changed/saved the other vampires in his family. It seems like Carlisle changed Edward out of a desire for a companion, rather than out of compassion for Edward.
[Edward to Bella:] "[Carlisle] was studying in Italy when he discovered the others there. They were much more civilized and educated than the wraiths of the London sewers." (16.58)
Edward tells Bella the story of Carlisle's and about the extreme isolation he had felt when he first became a vampire. Carlisle was surprised to find others who were sophisticated like him. However, he remained isolated because of his "vegetarian" diet. Until he created his own family, Carlisle was pretty much alone.
[Esme to Bella:] "That's why I'm so happy that he's found you, dear. […] He's been the odd man out far too long; it's hurt me to see him alone." (17.279)
Esme feels like a mom to Edward and is thrilled he now has someone to love. Even though Edward has a great family, he was somewhat isolated since all of the other Cullens were paired off.
[Alice to Bella:] "It's been almost a century that Edward's been alone. Now he's found you. You can't see the changes that we see, we who have been with him for so long. Do you think any of us want to look into his eyes for the next hundred years if he loses you?" (20.51)
Alice echoes Esme's earlier sentiment that Edward has led a lonely life. Now, the Cullens are willing to fight James in order to ensure Edward's happiness.
[Bella to James:] "I'm alone." I'd never been more alone in my entire life. (22.73)
Bella is speaking literally – no one has come with her to the ballet studio – but also figuratively – she feels isolated from everyone who cares for her, since they don't know where she's gone.
[Bella:] "Charlie wasn't comfortable with expression his emotions out loud. I inherited that from him." (1.45)
Bella is uncomfortable expressing herself. This may be why she is distant with others at school and does not seem confident. However, she is almost immediately comfortable with Edward, and recognizes that about their dynamic. He gets her to reveal more about herself than she has to anyone else.
I didn't look up as I set my book on the table and took my seat, but I saw [Edward's] posture change from the corner of my eye. He was leaning away from me, sitting on the extreme edge of his chair and averting his face like he smelled something bad, inconspicuously. (1.149)
Edward is communicating nonverbally that he doesn't like Bella. Later, Bella learns he was tempted by her scent and was trying to keep his distance. As their relationship develops, Edward and Bella continue to read each other's body language.
It was amazing how instantaneously the choking fear vanished, amazing how suddenly the feeling of security washed over me – even before I was off the street – as soon as I heard his voice. (8.58)
Bella has just been through a terrifying experience where four scary men threatened her. The minute Edward speaks, she calms down.
[Edward to Bella:] "This is more complicated than I'd planned," [Edward] murmured to himself. (8.161)
This is one of the first times that Edward attempts to tell Bella know why he has been distant and moody. Bella and Edward's increasingly open communication allows their relationship to develop.
[Bella:] "Okay, then." I glared at him, and continue slowly. "Let's say, hypothetically of course, that…someone…could know what people are thinking, read minds, you know – with a few exceptions."
[Edward:] "Just one exception," he corrected, "hypothetically." (8.189, 190)
Edward is used to communication being easy, as he can read minds. Bella's mind, however, is unavailable to him. As a result, he has to develop his communication skills with Bella, ask her questions, and try to find out what she's thinking and feeling.
[Edward to Bella:] "Like your thoughts are on the AM frequency and I'm only getting FM." (9.17)
Edward explains how he reads minds and why he can't read Bella's.
[Edward to Bella:] "No, that's the problem. You take everything so coolly – it's unnatural. It makes me wonder what you're really thinking." (10.16)
Edward is frustrated because he can't read Bella's mind. It is a new experience for him to have to ask someone what's on her mind. To make it worse, Edward has a hard time reading Bella's emotions as well.
[Edward to Bella:] "And as for [Jessica's] other question…well, I'll be listening to hear the answer to that one myself." (10.51)
This is one way to find out what someone thinks of you. Jessica is about to give Bella the third degree. Edward warns Bella that he is going to listen to Jessica's thoughts in order to find out what Bella thinks of him. Does this seem fair to you, or is Edward invading Bella's privacy?
[Edward to Bella:] "You did," he agreed, but his voice was still rough. "You aren't precisely right, though. I do want to know what you're thinking – everything. I just wish...that you wouldn't be thinking some things." (10.148)
Edward claims that he wants to know what Bella's thinking. However, when he finds out what's going on in her mind, he sometimes gets angry.
[Bella to Edward:] "Well, aside from the obvious…" I hesitated. "I can't be sure – I don't know how to read minds – but sometimes it seems like you're trying to say goodbye when you're saying something else." That was the best I could sum up the sensation of anguish that his words triggered in me at times. (10.169)
Bella can't do any fancy vampire mind-reading, but she seems to read Edward well here. He's conflicted. He keeps trying to say goodbye, but can't bear to actually make himself walk away.
[Edward to Bella:] "And you still want to know why you can't see me hunt?" He seemed solemn, but I thought I saw a trace of humor deep in his eyes. (11.65)
Edward and Bella learn to read each other's expressions and emotions. Since their relationship is naturally intense, they sometimes communicate with humor – it can make scary questions less scary.
[Edward to Bella:] "Tell me what you're thinking," he whispered. I looked to see his eyes watching me, suddenly intent. "It's still so strange for me, not knowing." (13.15)
It is weird for Edward to have to ask Bella what's on her mind. He wishes he just could read her thoughts. Welcome to human world, Eddie. The fact that Edward can't read Bella's mind helps to make their relationship a bit more equal.
[Edward to Bella:] "It was unquestionably a complication that I couldn't simply read your thoughts to know what your reaction was to me. I wasn't used to having to go to such circuitous measures, listening to your words in Jessica's mind – her mind isn't very original, and it was annoying to have to stoop to that. And then I couldn't know if you really meant…what you said. It was all extremely irritating." He frowned at the memory. (13.115)
Edward expresses his frustrations of decoding the "he said/she said" through Jessica's brain.
[Edward to Bella:] "I wish, " he whispered, " I wish you could feel the…complexity….the confusion...I feel. That you could understand." (13.168)
Edward wishes Bella could read his mind. He is confused, yet obsessed. He wants to stay away, but cannot. She does not seem to understand the danger of their relationship, and he wishes she could. Because they are of different species, they can't completely understand one another.
[Edward to Bella:] "Bella." Edward's voice was very soft. Alice and Emmett looked out their windows. "If you let anything happen to yourself – anything at all – I'm holding you personally responsible. Do you understand that?" (18.162)
Edward is concerned and afraid. All the same, is he being fair here? It's not really her fault that James is tracking her, is it?
[Jasper to Bella:] "I can feel what you're feeling now – and you are worth it." (19.159)
Though Jasper can't read minds, he does have another skill that aids communication – he can feel others' emotions. Here, though he doesn't know Bella's exact thoughts, he can sense what she's feeling.
The gray light, streaking across the cloudless sky, stung my eyes. But I couldn't close them; when I did, the images that flashed all too vividly, like still slides behind my lids, were unbearable. Charlie's broken expression – Edward's brutal snarl, teeth bared – Rosalie's resentful glare – the keen-eyed scrutiny of the tracker – the dead look in Edward's eyes after he kissed me the last time…I couldn't stand to see them. So I fought against my weariness and the sun rose higher. (20.6)
While racing to Phoenix, Bella thinks about all the non-verbal cues she has received in the recent past. A lot can be communicated without speaking.
[Bella to Edward:] "You are my life. You're the only thing it would hurt me to lose." I was getting better at this. It was easy to admit how much I needed him. (24.204)
This passage reveals a change in Bella. At the beginning of the novel, she had a hard time communicating her emotions and making herself vulnerable, but now she can communicate her deeper feelings to the people around her.
[Bella to Edward:] "At what point exactly are you going to tell me what's going on?" I asked grumpily. I really hated surprises. And he knew that. (Epilogue.3)
Bella wants to know what is happening. She doesn't like being in the dark. She sounds a bit like Edward often does when he demands to know what she's thinking.
It was there, sitting in the lunchroom, trying to make conversation with seven curious strangers, that I first saw them.
They were sitting in the corner of the cafeteria, as far away from where I sat as possible in the long room. There were five of them. They weren't talking, and they weren't eating, though they each had a tray of untouched food in front of them. (1.107-108)
Upon first sight of the Cullens, Bella is mesmerized. They are beautiful beyond belief. But aside from their good looks, they also appear different in another way – they aren't eating or talking.
I stared because their faces, so different, so similar, were all devastatingly, inhumanly beautiful. They were faces you never expected to see except perhaps on the airbrushed pages of a fashion magazine. Or painted by an old master as the face of an angel. It was hard to decide who was the most beautiful – maybe the perfect blond girl, or the bronze-haired boy (1.113)
Bella notices just how gorgeous the Cullen family is. And she's right – their good looks are "inhuman." Also notice how Bella, for whatever reason, is immediately more attracted to Edward ("the bronze-haired boy") than to Jasper or Emmett.
In fact, I was sure there was something different. I vividly remembered the flat black color of his eyes the last time he glared at me – the color was striking against the background of his pale skin and his auburn hair. Today, his eyes were a completely different color: a strange ocher, darker than butterscotch, but with the same golden tone. (2.145)
Bella is very observant – or at least observant when it comes to Edward. She notices Edward's eyes change color between black and ocher. We later learn that vampires' eye color changes depending on whether or not they're thirsty. Their eyes are black when they haven't fed recently, so now that Edward's eyes are lighter, he's less dangerous to Bella.
I saw down automatically, watching [Edward] with caution. He was still smiling. It was hard to believe that someone so beautiful could be real. I was afraid that he might disappear in a sudden puff of smoke, and I would wake up. (5.15)
Edward invites Bella to sit with him. She is (yet again) struck by his beauty and, of course, the unexpected invitation.
[Edward to Bella:] "Like I said, it's ostentatious. We try to blend in." (10.26)
The Cullens usually try to fit in, probably so they don't arouse any suspicion. But Rosalie's BMW is definitely eye-catching.
[Bella to Jessica:] "I can't explain it right…but he's even more unbelievable behind the face." The vampire who wanted to be good – who ran around saving people's lives so he wouldn't be a monster...I stared toward the front of the room. (10.101)
Bella tells Jessica that there is so much more to Edward than meets the eye...but Jess could have no idea how much more there is. Consider how this conversation is being interpreted: 1) Edward is listening, and Bella knows he's listening, so she's paying him a compliment; 2) Jessica probably thinks that Bella means that Edward has a nice personality under the great looks. On a separate note, despite what Bella says, do you think she's more attracted to Edward as a result of his physical appearance or his inner qualities?
[Bella to Edward:] "Well, look at me," I said unnecessarily as he was already staring. "I'm absolutely ordinary – well, except for bad things like all the near-death experiences and being so clumsy that I'm almost disabled. And look at you." I waved my hand toward him and all his bewildering perfection. (10.171)
Bella thinks Edward is out of her league because of his appearance. Do you believe that Bella is "absolutely ordinary"?
[Edward to Bella:] His brow creased angrily for a moment, then smoothed as his eyes took on a knowing look. "You don't see yourself very clearly, you know. I'll admit you're dead-on about bad things," he chuckled blackly, "but you didn't hear what every human male in this school was thinking on your first day." (10.172)
According to Edward, Bella does not see herself as others see her. In that case, do you think that Edward is primarily attracted to Bella because of her physical appearance?
I tried to keep my eyes away from his perfection as much as possible, but I slipped often. (12.247)
Bella tries not to stare at Edward all day. Do you think that Edward's beautiful appearance forms the basis for her interest in him? How would their relationship be different if he looked like, say, Mike?
Edward in the sunlight was shocking. I couldn't get used to it, though I'd been staring at him all afternoon. His skin, white despite the faint flush from yesterday's hunting trip, literally sparkled, like thousands of tiny diamonds were embedded in the surface. (13.1)
Usually in vampire mythology, vampires die from the sun (turning into ash, smoke, or even burning), but in an ironic twist of the traditional vampire myth, Edward sparkles. He's even more beautiful in the sun.
The meadow, so spectacular to me at first, paled next to his magnificence. (13.4)
Even nature pales compared to Edward's beauty. (Hehe... Get it, "pales"?)
[Edward to Bella:] "Wrong again," he murmured in my ear. " You are utterly indecent – no one should look so tempting, it's not fair." (15.93)
Hmm...when Edward says "tempting," what exactly does he mean? Does he mean that she's beautiful or that she looks delicious? Do you think that Edward is more attracted to Bella as a woman or as a meal?
[Carlisle to Laurent, James, and Victoria:] "Please don't take offense, but we'd appreciate it if you'd refrain from hunting in this immediate area. We have to stay inconspicuous, you understand," Carlisle explained. (18.23)
Carlisle's family attempts to keeps up appearances in order to maintain a semi-permanent home. If this new group of vampires feeds on the local population, people may become suspicious of the Cullens.
I'd never seen him dress in black before, and, with the contrast against his pale skin, his beauty was absolutely surreal. That much I couldn't deny, even if the fact that he was wearing a tuxedo made me nervous. (Epilogue.6)
Despite spending more time with Edward, Bella continues to be struck by his beauty. She doesn't seem to get used to it. If Bella became a vampire, do you think she would still find Edward as attractive?
[Bella to Edward:] "Do you remember when you told me that I didn't see myself very clearly?" I asked, raising my eyebrows. "You obviously have the same blindness." (Epilogue.189)
Edward and Bella don't see themselves the way the others see them. All the same, do you think that Edward is a particularly attractive vampire, or an average looking one?
I'd never given much though to how I would die – though I'd had reason enough in the last few months – but even if I had, I would not have imagined it like this. (Preface.1)
Bella is facing her death. Interestingly, despite Edward constantly warning her that she's in danger, Bella thinks about her own mortality for the first time when she faces James.
When life offers you a dream so far beyond any of your expectations, it's not reasonable to grieve when it comes to an end. (Preface.4)
Bella thinks that her life has been amazing and is grateful for what fate brought her. She seems to be saying that meeting and spending some time with Edward was an experience worth dying for. She wouldn't trade it for anything.
[Edward to Bella:] "Of course, then you were nearly crushed to death in front of my eyes. Later I thought of a perfectly good excuse for why I acted at that moment – because if I hadn't saved you, if your blood had been spilled there in front of me, I don't think I could have stopped myself from exposing us for what we are. But I only thought of that excuse later. At the time, all I could think was, 'Not her.'" (13.117)
Edward speaks of how he felt when Bella had one of her brushes with death. He already had an instinct to protect her at all costs.
[Edward to Bella:] "[Carlisle] wasn't absolutely sure how his own transformation had occurred, so he was hesitant. And he was loath to steal anyone's life the way his had been stolen. It was in that frame of mind that he found me. There was no hope for me; I was left in a ward with the dying. He had nursed my parents, and knew I was alone." (16.64)
Edward talks of how Carlisle had prevented Edward's death by transforming him into a vampire. He may have ceased being human, but at least he got to live. However, Carlisle doesn't seem to think that life as a vampire is better than life as a human – he would only transform someone into a vampire as a last resort.
[Edward to Bella:] "The only way to be sure is to tear him to shreds, and then burn the pieces." (19.88)
As it turns out, even vampires aren't entirely immortal. Edward explains how to kill a vampire, which is what he plans for James.
Immortality must grant endless patience. Neither Jasper nor Alice seemed to feel the need to do anything at all. For a while, Alice sketched the vague outline of the dark room from her vision, as much as she could see in the light from the TV. But when she was done, she simply sat, looking at the blank walls with her timeless eyes. Jasper, too, seemed to have no urge to pace, or peek through the curtains, or run screaming out the door, the way I did. (20.178)
Bella is impatient as they wait for the tracker. She feels as if she is waiting for death. This passage also raises an interesting question: does time pass differently for vampires since they are immortal?
[James] stepped back, and began to circle, casually, as if he were trying to get a better view of a statue in a museum. His face was still open and friendly as he decided where to start. (22.127)
Bella is speaking of James as he is circling her. Since Bella isn't much of challenge to kill, he's taking his time, smiling as he contemplates how to kill her.
Through the nausea and dizziness I saw something that gave me a sudden, final shred of hope. [James's] eyes, merely intent before, now burned with an uncontrollable need. The blood – spreading crimson across my white shirt, pooling rapidly on the floor – was driving him mad with thirst. No matter his original intentions, he couldn't draw this out much longer. (22.140)
All Bella hopes for at this point is a quick death. She doesn't think there's any possibility that she'll live.
I heard, as if from underwater, the final growl of the hunter. I could see, through the long tunnels my eyes had become, his dark shape coming toward me. With my last effort, my hand instinctively raised to protect my face. My eyes closed, and I drifted. (22.142)
Bella speaks as if these are her final words before death. Little does she know that Edward is on the way.
As I drifted, I dreamed. […]
Where I floated, under the dark water, I heard the happiest sound my mind could conjure up – as beautiful, as uplifting, as it was ghastly. It was another snarl; a deeper, wilder roar that rang with fury. […]
And then I knew I was dead. (23.1, 2, 4)
Bella is recovering from being attacked by James, but she believes she's dead. It seems that she thinks the most beautiful sound she can imagine is Edward's snarl as he comes to defend her. Why is it that Bella knows she is dead? What convinces her?
[Edward as heard by Bella:] "Carlisle!" the angel called, agony in his perfect voice. "Bella, Bella, no, oh please, no, no!" And the angel was sobbing tearless, broken sobs. (23.11)
Bella thinks she has died and that Edward is an angel.
[Bella:] "You're wrong," I insisted. "I'm going to die. […] I may not die now…but I'm going to die sometime. Every minute of the day, I get closer. And I'm going to get old." (24.223, 225)
Bella reminds Edward of a central conflict in their relationship: she will grow old and die, while he is immortal. She wants him to transform her into a vampire so they can share eternal youth.
[Bella:] "Well...I assumed it was some kind of…occasion. But I didn't think it would be some trite human thing...prom!" I scoffed. […]
[Bella:] "Okay," I confessed in a rush. "So I was hoping that you might have changed your mind…that you were going to change me, after all." […]
A dozen emotions played across his face. Some I recognized: anger…pain…and then he seemed to collect himself and his expression became amused.
[Edward:] "You thought that would be a black tie occasion, did you?" he teased, touching the lapel of his tuxedo jacket. (Epilogue.175, 178, 180-181)
Bella is disappointed she is at the prom. She thought Edward was going to transform her into a vampire. Rather than go to a human celebration, she was hoping for a supernatural experience.
[Jacob to Bella:] "Well, there are lots of legends, some of them claiming to date back to the Flood – supposedly, the ancient Quileutes tied their canoes to the tops of the tallest tress on the mountain to survive like Noah and the ark." He smiled to show me how little stock he put in the histories. "Another legend claims that we descended from wolves – and that the wolves are our brothers still." (6.109)
Jacob tells Bella about some Quileute myths and stories. If vampires can exist, maybe werewolves do too?
[Jacob to Bella:] "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." (6.113)
According to Quileute legend, Jacob's ancestors were werewolves and the enemy of vampires like the Cullens. This mention, combined with Bella's later dream that Jacob turns into a wolf, makes us wonder – do werewolves exist in the world of Twilight?
[Jacob to Bella:] "So, you see," Jacob continued, "the cold ones are traditionally our enemies. But this pack that came to our territory during my great-grandfather's time was different. They didn't hunt the way others of their kind did – they weren't supposed to be dangerous to the tribe. So my great-grandfather made a truce with them. If they would promise to stay off our lands, we wouldn't expose them to the pale-faces." (6.118)
This Quileute legend of a peace treaty between werewolves and vampires has been passed down through the generations. Jacob believes it's just a scary story. He doesn't seem to have any clue that supernatural beings truly do exist in Forks.
[Jacob to Bella:] "No." He paused dramatically. "These are the same ones." (6.124)
Bella learns the Cullen family didn't descend from the vampires that formed a treaty with the Quileutes generations ago – supposedly they are the same vampires. Jacob clearly thinks this is just a scary, superstitious story, but Bella is taking it a bit more seriously.
My subconscious had dredged up exactly the images I'd been trying so desperately to avoid. I was going to have to face them now. (7.22)
Bella is going to have to face what her subconscious has already told her about Edward.
It seemed that most vampire myths centered around beautiful women as demons and children as victims; they also seemed like constructs created to explain away the high mortality rates for young children, and to give men an excuse for infidelity. (7.35)
From her research, Bella develops her own sort of philosophy on vampires... Most of the information she comes across doesn't seem to ring true.
Only three entries really caught my attention: the Romanian Varacolaci, a powerful undead being who could appear as a beautiful, pale-skinned human, the Slovak Nelapsi, a creature so strong and fast it could massacre an entire village in the single hour after midnight. (7.36)
Bella pieces together information on vampires, looking for qualities that they might share with the Cullens. Edward is beautiful, pale-skinned, fast, and powerful, so these descriptions seem to fit him well.
Something outside the possibility of rational justification was taking place in front of my incredulous eyes. (7.53)
Sometimes life isn't rational and Bella opens herself up to all possibilities, no matter how horrifying. She's not sure what's real and what's superstition anymore.
[Bella:] "Okay, then." I glared at him, and continue slowly. "Let's say, hypothetically of course, that…someone…could know what people are thinking, read minds, you know – with a few exceptions." (8.190)
Bella tries to pull the truth out of Edward by walking through each step she knows is true. She seems to be convinced that he has supernatural abilities. Do you think Bella acts in a realistic way upon finding out that Edward has these unique skills?
[Edward to Bella:] "Most of the time I tune it all out – it can be very distracting. And then it's easier to seem normal." (9.14)
Even though Edward is supernatural, he'd prefer to be normal. Or at least seem normal on the surface.
[Bella to Edward:] "About vampires." (9.54)
Bella tells Edward she thinks he is a vampire, but the word itself is hard for her to say.
[Bella:] "Don't laugh – but how can you come out during the daytime?"
[Edward] laughed anyway. "Myth."
"Burned by the sun?"
"Sleeping in coffins?"
Bella learns that even though vampires exist, that doesn't mean all superstitions are actually true... Edward has fun debunking myths about vampires.
[Edward to Bella:] His voice was bleak. "Don't you want to know if I drink blood?" (9.105)
Edward asks Bella if she wants to know some of the more...upsetting things that he does, not just the fun supernatural skills. He's trying to scare Bella by being honest with her.
[Bella to Edward:] "And you'll show me what you meant, about the sun?" (10.204)
Edward has indicated that weird things happen to him in the sun, and Bella is excited to witness it herself. Contrary to typical vampire mythology, Meyer's vampires are not harmed by the sun, rather their skin sparkles like diamonds in sunlight.
Could [Billy] really believe the impossible legends his son had scoffed at? […] The answer was clear in Billy's eyes. Yes, yes, he could. (11.165, 166)
Billy truly believes the Quileute stories about vampires and werewolves, which is why he's so concerned about the Cullens. Billy, however, is careful not to break the treaty that his ancestors made with the Cullens – he never tells Bella outright that they are vampires.
[Jacob to Bella:] "Superstitious old man," Jacob muttered under his breath. (12.38)
Jacob is embarrassed because he believes his father is simply superstitious. Little does he know that the Cullens actually are "cold ones."
I looked away, my eyes wandering back to his family, embarrassed and dissatisfied. His words made me feel like a science experiment. (12.113)
Bella feels unnatural when she's surrounded by a supernatural family.
[Edward to Bella:] "You only have to risk your life every second you spend with me, that's surely not much. You only have to turn your back on nature, on humanity...what's that worth?" (14.202)
Edward explains what it would be like for Bella to be with someone who is supernatural. She needs to understand what she's giving up to be with him – how it will affect her 24/7.
[Bella to Edward:] "Are you sure you won't vanish in the morning?" I wanted this to be certain. "You are mythical, after all." (14.262)
Bella considers Edward a mythical creature. She has a hard time believing that he's actually real.
[Edward to Bella:] "He actually discovered a coven of true vampires that lived hidden in the sewers of the city, only coming out by night to hunt. In those days, when monsters were not just myths and legends, that was the way many lived." (15.242)
Edward tells Bella about how Carlisle hunted for vampires during his human life. Since the 1600s when he was a human, people have come to think of vampires as mythological creatures, rather than actual beings.
[Bella to Alice:] "Tell me then…how do you become a vampire?" (20.69)
In Phoenix, Bella wants to know how one transforms from a natural to a supernatural being.
In his rearview mirror, Edward's eyes were on me. He was unquestionably shaking with laughter, as if he'd heard every word Tyler had said. (4.96)
Bella isn't aware of it yet, but Edward can hear what Tyler is thinking. Edward seems to get a great deal of amusement from getting at Bella's thoughts through the other Forks High students.
[Bella:] "I smelled the blood," I said, wrinkling my nose […].
[Edward:] "People can't smell blood," he contradicted.
[Bella:] "Well, I can – that's what makes me sick. It smells like rust...and salt." (5.205-207)
In a scene of great irony, Bella faints at the smell of blood. She does have a unique skill that most humans apparently do not have: she can smell blood.
[Bella:] "Okay, then." I glared at him, and continue slowly. "Let's say, hypothetically of course, that…someone…could know what people are thinking, read minds, you know – with a few exceptions." [Edward:] "Just one exception," he corrected, "hypothetically." (8.189, 190)
Edward's special skill is that he can read minds – well, everyone's mind but Bella's. Why do you think he can't read Bella's mind? Why would Meyer have made that the case?
[Edward to Bella:] He smiled as he deciphered my expression. "Having the advantages I do," he murmured, touching his forehead discreetly, "I have a better than average grasp of human nature. People are predictable. But you…you never do what I expect. You always take me by surprise." (12.112)
Edward has special skills, but he can't read Bella. Since he's had the advantage of knowing the thoughts of everyone he's encountered before, he can tell for certain that Bella is unique. That she's a bit of a mystery is part of her attraction.
He streaked through the dark, thick underbrush of the forest like a bullet, like a ghost. There was no sound, no evidence that his feet touched the earth. […]
Edward: "Running is second nature to me, it's not something I have to think about." (13.202, 228)
Bella is amazed by Edward's speed. For him, the skill isn't even worthy of thought. Edward's speed also makes him a dangerous predator.
Edward: "Regardless," he finally murmured, "I have better reflexes." (13.373)
Edward is talking about his reflexes as they relate to driving. This is another one of the qualities that all vampires share – it makes them better predators of humans. Is there anything that humans are better at than vampires?
[Edward to Bella:] "That's true. [Alice] knows other things. She sees things – things that might happen, things that are coming. But it's very subjective. The future isn't set in stone. Things change." (14.30)
Alice's special skill is her ability to see the future. The skill has a weakness in that the future can change as people alter their plans.
[Edward to Bella:] "Mind over matter," he repeated, smiling his teeth bright even in the darkness. (14.183)
Edward hopes he has the inner strength to hold back his natural instincts with Bella. Though he is physically very powerful, he does often worry that he's weak on the inside.
It was also unsettling to know [Edward] spoke aloud only for my benefit. (16.17)
When visiting Edward's family, Bella is keenly aware that she doesn't have their ability to communicate with Edward without words. Since Edward can't read Bella's mind, they must speak aloud with one another. Interestingly, this means that Bella can keep secrets from Edward, but his siblings and parents can't.
Carlisle, Emmett, and the others turned in the same direction, hearing sounds of passage much too faint for my ears. (17.344)
The Cullens have very sensitive hearing, like many non-humans in the animal kingdom, including dogs. This is yet another skill vampires have that makes them dangerous predators.
I guessed Jasper was using his peculiar gift to control the situation. (18.15)
Jasper can manipulate emotions. He uses this skill to ease the tension of the situation when the human-eating vampire coven appears.
[Laurent to the Cullens:] "You can't bring him down. I've never seen anything like him in my three hundred years. He's absolutely lethal. That's why I joined his coven." (19.106)
James is incredibly skilled at tracking and killing his prey. Though all vampires are proficient predators, James seems to be a step above everyone else.
My guilt slowly subsided as I looked into [Alice's] dark eyes. But, even as the calm spread over me, I knew I couldn't trust my feelings with Jasper there. (20.53)
Because Jasper has the ability to manipulate emotions, Bella can't trust that her feeling of calm is natural. She seems to prefer to feel her true fear and apprehension. Why is that? Should she resist Jasper's influence in this situation?
[Alice to Bella:] "As predators, we have a glut of weapons in our physical arsenal – much, much more than really necessary. The strength, the speed, the acute senses, not to mention those of us like Edward, Jasper, and I, who have extra senses as well. And then, like a carnivorous flower, we are physically attractive to our prey." (20.80)
Like any great predator, vampires have a wide variety of effective weapons. Their physical attractiveness, however, is a weapon designed to be effective on their primary prey – humans.
[Alice to Bella:] "We have another fairly superfluous weapon. We're also venomous," she said, her teeth glistening. "The venom doesn't kill – it's merely incapacitating. It works slowly, spreading through the bloodstream, so that, once bitten, our prey is in too much physical pain to escape us. Mostly superfluous, as I said. If we're that close, the prey doesn't escape. Of course, there are always exceptions. Carlisle, for example." (20.82)
Alice explains another weapon of vampires. This comment foreshadows that last scene in the ballet studio, during which James bites Bella. After being infected by James's venom, Bella is in too much physical pain to escape or even try to fight off her attacker.
Alice looked meaningfully at Jasper. A deep, heavy fog of lethargy washed over me, and my eyes closed without my permission. My mind struggled against the fog, realizing what was happening. I forced my eyes open and stood up, stepping away from Jasper's hand. (21.21)
Jasper is using his special skill to manipulate Bella. He's attempting to help her relax and sleep.
It was impossible, being in this house, not to realize that Charlie had never gotten over my mom. (1.70)
The marriage might be over, but Charlie is still in love Renée. Here it's interesting to note that the only human marriage we see – that of Charlie and Renée – ended in divorce, while the vampire marriages seem quite strong, and have been for decades.
And then there was [Edward's] family, looking on from the distance, with expressions that ranged from disapproval to fury but held no hint of concern for their brother's safety. (3.51.1)
After Edward saves Bella from Tyler's van, Bella is surprised that his family does not show concern. What she doesn't know is that they're immortal (a van isn't going to hurt Edward). Although they might be a little concerned that Edward has given away their secret.
[Edward to Bella:] "That's not it," he disagreed, but his eyes were too innocent. "They don't understand why I can't leave you alone." (12.108)
Edward explains that his family doesn't understand his love for Bella. It's important to note that Edward's involvement with Bella isn't just about him. If Bella gives the Cullens' secret away, or if their relationship "ends badly," it hurts all of the Cullens, not just Edward.
[Edward to Bella:] "To me, it was like you were some kind of demon, summoned straight from my own personal hell to ruin me. The fragrance coming off your skin...I thought it would make me deranged that first day. In that one hour, I thought of a hundred different ways to lure you from the room with me, to get you alone. And I fought them each back, thinking of my family, what I could do to them…" (13.103)
Edward talks of the danger he put his family in, as well as the guilt he currently feels for putting them at risk. Again, we realize that Edward's decisions aren't only about him, they impact the whole Cullen family.
[Edward to Bella:] "Alice and Jasper are two very rare creatures. They both developed a conscience, as we refer to it, with no outside guidance. Jasper belonged to another…family, a very different kind of family." (14.28)
Not all vampire families are like the Cullens. Notice how Edward pauses before saying "family." It's as if "family" isn't quite the right word for most vampire groups. This distinguishes the Cullens who truly do seem to love each other as a family.
[Edward to Bella:] "No, not many. But most won't settle in any once place. Only those like us, who've given up hunting you people" – a sly glance in my direction – "can live together with humans for any length of time. We've only found one other family like ours, in a small village in Alaska. We lived together for a time, but there were so many of us that we became too noticeable. Those of us who live…differently tend to band together." (14.35)
Edward's family is indeed rare. Not only do they not eat people, but also they can have a semi-permanent home, since they aren't, you know, killing their neighbors. This comment also implies that vampire families are, in part, bound together by their diets and morals, rather than by being biologically related.
[Edward to Bella:] "You miss your mother," he whispered. "You worry about her. And when it rains, the sounds make you restless. You used to talk about home a lot, but it's less often now. Once you said, "It's too green.'" (14.78)
At this point, Phoenix feels like home. Bella still considers Forks to be her dad's town.
[Charlie to Bella:] "Well, you're too good for them all, anyway. Wait till you get to college to start looking." Every father's dream, that his daughter will be out of the house before the hormones kick in. (14.116)
Sometimes, Charlie and Bella act like a normal father/daughter pair. Here, Charlie is being a protective dad.
[Bella to Edward:] "You said that Rosalie and Emmett will get married soon...Is that…marriage...the same as it is for humans?" (14.265)
Bella asks what marriage is like for vampires. Without saying it explicitly, she's trying to find out what the future might have in store for her.
[Edward to Bella:] "Oh, they already know everything. They'd taken bets yesterday, you know" – he smiled, but his voice was harsh – "on whether I'd bring you back, though why anyone would bet against Alice, I can't imagine. At any rate, we don't have secrets in the family. It's not really feasible, what with my mind reading and Alice seeing the future and all that." (15.57)
Besides being vampires, some of Edward's family members have special skills. As a result of he and Alice's "talents," no one can keep secrets. It's probably a frustrating experience at times, but it likely makes them closer. This stands in stark contrast to Bella's family, since she keeps plenty of secrets from Charlie and Renée.
[Bella to Edward:] "I don't know," I admitted. My dating history gave me few references points to work with. Not that any normal rules of dating applied here. "That's not necessary, you know. I don't expect you to…I mean, you don't have to pretend for me." (15.71)
Edward thinks that Bella should introduce him to her dad, but Bella doesn't want to deal with that potentially awkward scene. This highlights a difference between the Cullen and Swan families. Edward quickly introduces Bella to his family, and he has obviously been talking to them about Bella for a while. Bella, on the other hand, is hesitant to let Edward meet Charlie, and she hasn't even hinted to Charlie that she has a boyfriend.
[Bella:] "Is that what you are?" I suppressed my internal cringing at the thought of Edward and Charlie and the word boyfriend all in the same room at the same time.
[Edward:] "It's a loose interpretation of the word 'boy,' I'll admit." (15.75-76)
What do you think is more awkward: being a vampire and introducing your family to your human girl/boyfriend, or being a human bringing home your vampire girl/boyfriend? They're an odd couple, but Edward's point is that sometimes you have to introduce your boyfriend to your dad.
It was hard to decide what to wear. I doubted there were any etiquette books detailing how to dress when your vampire sweetheart takes you home to meet his vampire family. (15.88)
Bella tries to figure out what to wear to meet Edward's family. She wants them to approve of her (but not in the tasty morsel way).
[Edward to Bella:] "[Carlisle and Esme] are happy to see me happy. Actually, Esme wouldn't care if you had a third eye and webbed feet." (15.190)
Edward's family supports him and just wants him to be happy – Esme, the mother figure, is thrilled he finally has a girlfriend, and doesn't mind that Bella is of a different species.
[Edward to Bella:] "After you get rid of them" – he threw a dark glance in the Blacks' direction – "you still have to prepare Charlie to meet your new boyfriend." (17.17.2)
Edward wants to be introduced to Bella's dad, and he's insistent about it. He has already introduced Bella to his family, and he wants Bella to do the same for him. Why do you think this is? Does it makes their relationship seem more official? Or is it some other reason?
[Charlie:] "He's too old for you," he ranted. (17.114)
Dads can sometimes disagree with their daughters on whom they should date. Little does Charlie know 1) how "too old" for Bella Edward really is, and 2) the other things about Edward that he should be concerned about.
[Bella to Charlie:] "I'm going home," I shouted, my voice breaking in the perfect spot. (19.20)
Bella lies to her dad in order to save his life. She realizes that Forks is now more of a home to her than Phoenix, but she's determined to leave if it means protecting Charlie.
[Bella to Charlie:] "I do like him – that's the problem. I can't do this anymore! I can't put down any more roots here! I don't want to end up trapped in this stupid, boring town like Mom! I'm not going to make the same mistake she did. I hate it – I can't stay here another minute!" (19.33)
Bella is lying to her father when she says that Forks cannot be her home. She uses the same cruel words her mother had used when she left... that's a low blow. However, Bella is willing to hurt Charlie because she believes that it will save him from James. Charlie's safety is the most important thing to her right now.
And suddenly it hit me. My mother was safe. She was still in Florida. (22.94)
Bella is relieved that her mother is fine and not actually at risk from James, regardless of where that leaves Bella. The most important thing to Bella is that her mom is safe.
[James to Bella:] "How odd. You really mean it." His dark eyes assessed me with interest. The irises were nearly black, just a hint of ruby around the edges. Thirsty. "I will give your strange coven this much, you humans can be quite interesting. I guess I can see the draw of observing you. It's amazing – some of you seem to have no sense of your own self-interest at all." (22.99)
James is amazed that Bella puts her family ahead of herself. Does this mean that most vampire families don't act the same way? Are they not as self-sacrificing?
[Bella:] "Wait, Mom!" I interrupted. Edward still had his eyes closed, but he looked too tense to pass as asleep. "What are you talking about? I'm not going to Florida. I live in Forks." […]
[Bella:] "Mom." I hesitated, wondering how best to be diplomatic about this. "I want to live in Forks. I'm already settled in at school, and I have a couple of girlfriends" – she glanced toward Edward again when I remaindered her of friends, so I tried another direction – "and Charlie needs me. He's just all alone up there, and he can't cook at all." (24.104, 106)
Instead of wanting to live with her mother, Bella now prefers to live in Forks. This probably has more to do with Edward than it does with Charlie. Is Bella placing her romantic relationship above her family?
[Renée:] "I think that boy is in love with you," she accused, keeping her voice low.
[Bella:] "I think so, too," I confided.
[Renée:] "And how do you feel about him?" She only poorly concealed the raging curiosity in her voice.
I sighed, looked away. As much as I loved my mom, this was not a conversation I wanted to have with her. "I'm pretty crazy about him." There – that sounded like something a teenager with her first boyfriend might say. (24.118-121)
Though Edward is open with his family about the seriousness of his relationship with Bella, she is not so open with her family. Why is that? Does Bella think she's protecting her family by keeping her relationship a secret? Or protecting the Cullens? Or does she simply feel uncomfortable revealing so much about her private life?
[Edward to Bella:] He looked down while he answered. "I'm surprised. I thought Florida…and your mother…well, I thought that's what you would want." (24.152)
Edward is pleasantly surprised that Bella calls Forks her home. More and more, Edward rather than Renée seems to signify Bella's home.
[Bella to Edward:] "Look, that's not an issue either," I finally muttered; my voice was unconvincing as always when I lied. "Renée has always made the choices that work for her – she'd want me to do the same. And Charlie's resilient, he's used to being on his own. I can't take care of them forever. I have my own life to live." (24.217)
Bella is attempting to convince Edward to turn her into a vampire. She seems to be placing her relationship with Edward above her family. Has she thought this decision through? Can she continue to be a part of her family if she becomes a vampire? Or is she willing to give up her family entirely and join the Cullens?
[Bella:] "Do you want me to bolt the doors so you can massacre the unsuspecting townsfolk?" I whispered conspiratorially.
[Edward:] "And where do you fit into that scheme?" He glared.
[Bella:] "Oh, I'm with the vampires, of course." (Epilogue.35-37)
Bella is coming to feel that she fits in with the vampires. Do you think that she feels more of a sense of family with them than with Charlie or Renée? Can she continue to live in both worlds?
[Edward to Bella:] "Sometimes I have a problem with my temper, Bella." He was whispering, too, and as he stared out the window, his eyes narrowed into slits. "But it wouldn't be helpful for me to turn around and hunt down those…" (8.84)
Edward hates the men who tried to harm Bella. He had heard their thoughts and was tempted to kill them. It takes a lot of will power not to let his rage run wild.
[Edward to Bella:] "So [Carlisle] grew very hungry, and eventually weak. He strayed as far as he could from the human populace, recognizing that his willpower was weakening, too. For months he wandered by night, seeking the loneliest places, loathing himself." (16.28)
Edward speaks of how much Carlisle hated himself after he had become a vampire. We know Edward has had similar feelings – he considers himself to be a "monster" and is horrified by his bloodlust.
[Edward:] "But as time went on, I began to see the monster in my eyes." (16.82)
Edward tells Bella about the period of time during which he rebelled against Carlisle and preyed on humans. But he came to see himself as a "monster" – he hated what he had become. Eventually he went back to the Cullen diet.
[Edward] put his hands carefully on both sides of my face. "I infuriate myself," he said gently. "The way I can't seem to keep from putting you in danger. My very existence puts you at risk. Sometimes I truly hate myself. I should be stronger. I should be able to." (17.244)
Edward hates himself for what he is, and for putting Bella at risk.
Edward turned on [Alice] in fury, his voice a blistering snarl. "There-is-no-other-option!" (18.90)
Edward hates the tracker for putting Bella at risk.
[James:] "I suppose you're going to tell me that your boyfriend will avenge you?" he asked, hopefully, it seemed to me.
[Bella:] "No, I don't think so. At least, I asked him not to." (22.101-102)
Knowing Edward and how much he hates anyone who threatens Bella, we're guessing that he'll be coming after James. Bella, however, doesn't seem to experience the same kind of intense, hateful emotions that Edward does.
[James to Bella:] "I'm sorry, but I just don't think he'll be able to resist hunting me after he watches this. I wouldn't want him to miss anything. It was all for him, of course. You're simply a human, who unfortunately was in the wrong time, and indisputably running with the wrong crowd, I might add." (22.116)
James hopes to inspire hate in Edward by videotaping Bella's death. Ultimately, he seems to want to lure Edward to him and kill Edward as well.
Surely it was a good way to die, in the place of someone else, someone I loved. Noble, even. That ought to count for something. (Preface.3)
Bella sets the tone of the novel by explaining that she is about to die. She's willing to sacrifice herself in place of someone she loves (we later find out that it's her mother). Do you generally consider Bella a selfless individual?
[Edward to Bella:] "You put on a good show," he said slowly. "But I'd be willing to bet that you're suffering more than you let anyone see." (2.195)
This is one of Edward and Bella's first conversations. Again we see that Bella has a relatively self-sacrificing nature – she heads to Forks so that her mother can spend time with her new husband. Edward understands that Bella is making a sacrifice because he senses that she's suffering.
[Edward to Bella:] "Don't you see? That's what proves me right. I care the most, because if I can do it" – and he shook his head, seeming to struggle with the thought – "if leaving is the right thing to do, then I'll hurt myself to keep from hurting you, to keep you safe." (10.177)
According to Edward, he must feel a greater sense of love for her, because he is willing to sacrifice his personal happiness for her safety.
[Edward to Bella:] "Which is exactly why I should. But don't worry. I'm essentially a selfish creature. I crave your company too much to do what I should." (13.61)
Edward likes being with Bella too much to make the "right" sacrifice, which makes him feel selfish.
[Bella to Edward:] "You already know how I feel, of course," I finally said. "I'm here…which, roughly translated, means I would rather die than stay away from you." I frowned. "I'm an idiot." (13.127)
Is Bella being selfish or selfless here? Is risking her life to be with Edward truly a sacrifice on her part?
[Bella to Edward:] "Just follow the plan, okay? Keep Charlie safe for me. He's not going to like me very much after this, and I want to have the chance to apologize later." (19.12)
Bella sets a plan in motion to sacrifice herself for the safety of her family.
[Charlie] spun around to look at me, and I could see in his face that he had no intention of letting me leave. I could think of only one way to escape, and it involved hurting him so much that I hated myself for even considering it. But I had not time, and I had to keep him safe. (19.31)
Bella is willing to sacrifice her father's trust in her in order to keep him safe.
[Edward to Bella:] "I know, Bella. Believe me, I know. It's like you've taken half my self away with you." (20.139)
Edward points out they are now connected, and how her sacrifice is also his.
[Bella to Alice:] "I can't win, Alice. You can't guard everyone I know forever. Don't you see what he's doing? He's not tracking me at all. He'll find someone, he'll hurt someone I love…Alice, I can't." (21.18)
Bella realizes she is going to have to make the ultimate sacrifice to save her family. If not now, then sometime down the road.
I had to accept that I wouldn't see Edward again, not even one last glimpse of his face to carry with me to the mirror room. I was going to hurt him, and I couldn't say goodbye. I left the waves of torture wash over me, have their way for a time. Then I pushed them back, too, and went to face Alice. (21.80)
Bella feels that her greatest sacrifice is not giving up her life, but giving up being with Edward.
I stared at him uncomprehendingly. "But you'd be stuck inside all day in Florida. You'd only be able to come out at night, just like a real vampire." […]
[Edward:] "I would stay in Forks, Bella. Or somewhere like it," he explained. "Someplace where I couldn't hurt you anymore." (24.152, 154)
Once again, Edward is willing to sacrifice his happiness for Bella's safety.
There was one thing I was sure of, if I was sure of anything. The dark Edward in my dream last night was a reflection only of my fear of the world Jacob had spoken, and not Edward himself. Even so, when I'd screamed out in terror at the werewolf's lunge, it wasn't fear for the wolf that brought the cry of "no" to my lips. It was fear that he would be harmed – even as he called to me with the sharp edged fangs, I feared for him. (7.59)
Bella is speaking of her dream. Her self-preservation instincts should make her afraid for her own life, but instead she fears Edward being hurt.
Of course I was happy about the sunlight. But that wasn't completely responsible for the euphoric mood I was in, not even close. (7.100)
Bella is a girl of the sun, and changes in nature affect her mood. However, Edward now has a greater impact on her emotions that the natural world does.
[Bella to Edward:] "He said you didn't…hunt people. He said your family wasn't supposed to be dangerous because you only hunted animals." (9.109)
Bella tells Edward what Jacob Black said to her about vampires, and the Cullen family in particular. The Cullens consciously suppress their natural instinct to feed on humans.
[Bella to Edward:] "Tell me why you hunt animals instead of people," I suggested. I realized my eyes were wet, and I fought against the grief that was trying to overpower me. (9.123)
Bella wants to understand why the vampire family avoids its natural instincts to eat people.
[Edward to Bella:] "Well, you asked if the sun hurt me, and it doesn't. But I can't go out in the sunlight – at least, not where anyone can see." (9.145)
Edward can go into the sun, but it would give away his true nature.
[Edward to Bella:] "Don't go into the woods alone." (9.194)
Edward warns Bella that there are many predators in the woods...some of which are scarier than he is. For more on the woods, check out our discussion in "Setting."
[Bella:] "Why did you go to that Goat Rocks place last weekend...to hunt? Charlie said it wasn't a place to hike, because of bears."
He stared at me as if I was missing something very obvious.
[Bella:] "Bears?" I gasped, and he smirked. "You know, bears are not in season," I added sternly, to hide my shock. (10.217-219)
Bella learns that Edward's family hunts bears.
[Edward] raised an eyebrow and the corners of his mouth turned down in disapproval. "Mountain lion." (10.226)
Edward's favorite prey is mountain lion. (Emmett's is a bear.) It seems that in some cases, the vampires' choice of prey reflects their personalities.
[Edward to Bella:] "When we hunt," he spoke slowly, unwillingly, "we give ourselves over to our sense…govern less with our minds. Especially our sense of smell. If you were anywhere near me when I lost control that way…" He shook his still, still gazing morosely at the heavy clouds. (11.74)
Edward speaks of giving in completely to his animalistic instincts when he hunts. It wouldn't be safe for Bella to be around for times like that, since she is a vampire's natural prey.
[Edward to Bella:] "Who were you, an insignificant little girl"– he grinned suddenly – "to chase me from the place I wanted to be? So I came back…." (13.112)
Edward was not going to let a mere human push him from his environment.
[Edward:] "And so the lion fell in love with the lamb…" he murmured. I look away, hiding my eyes as I thrilled to the word.
[Bella:] "What a stupid lamb," I signed.
[Edward:] "What a sick, masochistic lion." He stared into the shadowy forest for a long moment, and I wondered where his thoughts had taken him. (13.129-131)
Bella and Edward's love goes against the laws of nature. A predator should not fall in love with its prey.
[Edward to Bella:] "Well, where did you come from? Evolution? Creation? Couldn't we have evolved in the same way as other species, predator and prey? Or, if you don't believe that all this world could have just happened on its own, which is hard for me to accept myself, is it so hard to believe that the same force that created the delicate angelfish with the shark, the baby seal and the killer whale, could create both our kinds together?" (14.244)
Edward comments on the relationship between vampires and humans. He seems to be saying that vampires are the natural predators of humans, just like a shark is the predator of an angelfish, and the killer whale the predator of seals.
[Edward to Bella:] "One night, a herd of deer passed his hiding place. [Carlisle] was so wild with thirst that he attacked without a thought. His strength returned and he realized there was an alternative to being the vile monster he feared. Had he not eaten venison in his former life? Over the next months his new philosophy was born. He could exist without being a demon. He found himself again. " (16.29)
Edward speaks of Carlisle and how he discovered he didn't need to prey on humans. He felt that he wasn't a monster if he could resist feeding on humans.
[Bella:] "Do they like to cheat, then?"
[Esme:] "Oh yes – you should hear the arguments they get into! Actually, I hope you don't, you would think they were raised by a pack of wolves." (17.273)
It's kind of funny that Esme suggests that werewolves are less civilized than vampires.
They closed ranks before they continued cautiously toward Edward's family, exhibiting the natural respect of a troop of predators as it encounters a larger, unfamiliar group of its own kind. (18.2.1)
Vampires in the wild are different from those in civilization. They seem to act like other predators that you might experience in the wild, such as a pack of wolves.
A swift rigidity fell on all of them as James lurched one step forward into a crouch. Edward bared his teeth, crouching in defense, a feral snarl ripping from his throat. It was nothing like the playful sounds I'd heard from him this morning; it was the single most menacing thing I had ever heard, and chills ran from the crown of my head to the back of my heels. (18.27)
James and Edward are exhibiting their normal, fighting behavior.
[Alice to Bella:] "We're also like sharks in a way. Once we taste the blood, or even smell it for that matter, it becomes very hard to keep from feeding. Sometimes impossible. So you see, to actually bite someone, to taste the blood, it would begin the frenzy. It's difficult on both sides – the bloodlust on the one hand, the awful pain on the other." (20.88)
Alice explains what happens when a vampire tastes blood. She likens it to a shark feeding frenzy. She presents vampires' reaction to blood as natural, rather than evil.
It wasn't meant for me anyway. There was no glory in beating me, a weak human. (22.113)
Bella speaks of James, the tracker. She is just normal prey to him. It is the more challenging fights he really enjoys, such as taking on the Cullens, especially the protective Edward.
Emmett enjoyed having me around – he thought my bizarre human reactions were hilarious...or maybe it was just the fact that I fell down a lot that he found so funny. (Epilogue.41)
Emmett has come up with a way to happily co-exist with Bella. He finds her and her species amusing.
[Bella to Edward:] "And how long have you been seventeen?" (9.90)
Bella has figured out that Edward is not what he appears and is not "when" he appears. He's been seventeen for a long time.
[Edward to Bella:] "The Quileutes have a long memory," he whispered. (9.113)
Billy Black, who may have descended from werewolves, remembers the conflict between the werewolves and the vampires (a long time ago), as well as a treaty formed between the Quileutes and the Cullens. Though no one else in the Forks community seems to remember that the Cullens settled there before, the Quileutes do.
It was foggy and dark outside my window, absolutely perfect. He had no reason not to be in school today. I dressed in heavy clothes, remembering I didn't have a jacket. Further proof my memory was real. (10.2)
Bella has been questioning whether her experience with Edward the night before was actually real. She uses her lack of a jacket as proof that the day before did indeed happen as she remembered it.
[Edward to Bella:] "Music in the fifties was good. Much better than the sixties, or the seventies, ugh!" he shuddered. "The eighties were bearable." (14.4)
Despite appearing to be seventeen, Edward has lived through several generations of music.
[Edward to Bella:] "I was born in Chicago in 1901." He paused and glanced at me from the corner of his eyes. My face was carefully surprised, patient for the rest. He smiled a tiny smile and continued. "Carlisle found me in a hospital in the summer of 1918. I was seventeen, and dying of the Spanish influenza." (14.11)
Edward is significantly older than Bella. In fact, he's significantly older than her dad. Do you think their age difference impacts their relationship at all? Do you consider Edward's character convincing as a 100+-year-old man?
[Edward to Bella:] "I don't remember it well – it was a very long time ago, and human memories fade." He was lost in his thoughts for a short time before he went on. "I do remember how it felt, when Carlisle saved me. It's not an easy thing, not something you could forget." (14.13)
Vampires usually don't remember their human pasts. Do you think that their lives as humans affect them in any way?
[Edward to Bella:] "We don't really know. Carlisle has a theory…he believes that we all bring something of our strongest human traits with us into the next life, where they are intensified – like our minds, and our senses. He thinks that I must have already been very sensitive to the thoughts of those around me. And that Alice had some precognition, wherever she was." (14.250)
Vampires bring skills from their human pasts when they transform, and those skills become amplified to a vampire-level of strength.
Though, now that I'd chased the memories down, I did the vague impression of leaving the car – the sun was just falling behind the horizon – my arm draped over Alice's shoulder and her arm firm around my waist, dragging me along as I stumbled through the warm, dry shadows. (20.14)
Bella is exhausted and traumatized, so her memory isn't as good as usual.
[Alice to Bella:] "I don't know. For everyone else, the pain of transformation is the sharpest memory they have of their human life. I remember nothing of being human." (20.90)
Alice has no memory of her life as a human – she doesn't even remember her transformation. We later learn that Alice was locked up in a dark asylum as a human, which is why she doesn't remember anything from that time period.
[Alice to Bella:] "I'll tell you the mechanics of it," she said finally, "but I don't remember it myself, and I've never done it or seen it done, so keep in mind that I can only tell you the theory." (20.79.1)
Alice can tell Bella the theory behind transformation, but can't give a personal account of the process at all. In a way, this puts Bella and Alice on the same level of knowledge about the transformation experience.
From the corner of my eye, I could almost see my mother standing in the shade of the big eucalyptus tree where I'd played as a child. Or kneeling by the little plot of dirt around the mailbox, the cemetery of all the flowers she'd tried to grow. The memories were better than any reality I would see today. But I raced away from them, toward the corner, leaving everything behind me. (22.80)
As Bella goes to her certain death, she has flashes of memory from her childhood.
[James to Bella:] "I would just like to rub it in, just a little bit. The answer was there all along, and I was so afraid Edward would see that and ruin my fun. It happened once, oh, ages ago. The one and only time my prey escaped me." (22.119)
James tells a story of the one human that eluded him. Clearly he is not happy about his slightly-imperfect record.
"And she did smell so delicious. I still regret that I never got to taste. She smelled even better than you do. Sorry – I don't mean to be offensive. You have a very nice smell. Floral, somehow…" (22.123) James to Bella
James continues to obsess over the one human that got away from him. He can't seem to forget it.
[Bella:] A flash of painful images from the last time I'd seen Alice reminded me of something. "Did Alice see the tape?" I asked anxiously.
[Edward:] "Yes." A new sound darkened his voice, a tone of sheer hatred.
"She was always in the dark, that's why didn't remember. (24.45-47)
Though Alice doesn't remember her past, she now knows about her life as a human.
[Edward to Bella:] "Hello," said a quite musical voice. (2.109)
Bella is immediately attracted to Edward's voice. As Edward later points out, he's a perfect predator because everything about him is designed to draw her to him.
When he touched me, it stung my hand as if an electric current had passed through us. (2.128)
Bella feels electricity when Edward touches her. She and Edward clearly have some chemistry.
As always, I was electrically aware of Edward sitting close enough to touch, as distant as if he were merely an invention of my imagination. (4.24)
Bella is always physically aware of Edward, even when they are not touching.
His face startled me – his expression was torn, almost pained, and so fiercely beautiful that the ache to touch him flared as strong as before. (11.12)
Bella is speaking about how attractive she finds Edward. She has to restrain herself from reaching out to touch him. Though she finds him incredibly appealing, any physical contact is potentially dangerous.
Flickers of the electricity I'd felt this afternoon began to charge the atmosphere as he gazed unrelentingly into my eyes. (11.76)
Bella gets excited just by looking at Edward.
That night Edward starred I my dreams, as usual. However, the climate of my unconsciousness had changed. It thrilled with the same electricity that had charged the afternoon, and I tossed and turned restlessly, waking often. (11.85)
Bella dreams of Edward constantly. It's a bit awkward to think that Edward is probably watching her sleep at this moment, without her knowing it.
[Bella to Edward:] I was grudgingly honest. "Not in Phoenix…" (12.76)
Bella had no love life prior to meeting Edward, so both she and Edward are in the same position – this is their first experience with love.
As I had just that once before, I smelled his cool breath in my face. Sweet, delicious, the scent made my mouth water. It was unlike anything else. Instinctively, unthinkingly, I leaned closer, inhaling. (13.25)
Bella loves the scent of Edward. As Edward later points out, he's the perfect predator because everything about him draws her to him.
He raised his free hand and placed it gently on the side of my neck. I sat very still, the chill of his tough a natural warning – a warning telling me to be terrified. But there were no feeling of fear in me. There were, however, other feelings… (13.143)
Bella feels no fear. Instead, she's completely attracted to Edward.
[Edward to Bella:] "The blush on your cheeks is lovely," he murmured. He gently freed his other hand. My hands fell limply into my lap. Softly he brushed my cheek, then held my face between his marble hands. (13.146)
Edward and Bella limit themselves to lightly touching each other's face and hands, because anything more could prove to be dangerous.
Slowly, never moving his eyes from mine, he leaned toward me. Then abruptly, but very gently, he rested his cold check against the hollow at the base of my throat. I was quite unable to move, even if I'd wanted to. I listened to the sounds of his breathing, watching the sun and wind play in his bronze hair, more human than any other part of him. (13.148)
Bella is acutely aware of all her senses during this scene. She and Edward aren't speaking, but their body language says a lot about how they feel.
And it was almost warm, his usually ice skin. But I barely noticed, for I was touching his face, something I'd dreamed of constantly since the first day I'd seen him. (13.163)
Edward and Bella are enjoying their time together, trying not to worry about any human-vampire complications. Notice how Bella says that she's been wanting to touch his face for quite some time? How much of her attraction to him is based on his good looks?
[Edward to Bella:] "But…" His fingers touched my lips lightly, making me shiver again. "There are other hungers. Hungers I don't even understand, that are foreign to me. […] I'm not used to feeling so human. Is it always like this?" (13.172, 174)
This appears to be the first time Edward has been sexually attracted to someone. Since he's never been in a relationship before (and he's over 100 years old), he doesn't know how to go about dealing with these new emotions. He's not even sure if his feelings are normal.
Edward: "I have human instincts – they may be buried deep, but they're there." (13.182)
Edward isn't used to having to deal with human sexual feelings. And since he's been alone for so long, the feelings are strange to him.
[Edward:] "No," he continued, " I was thinking there was something I wanted to try." And he took my face in his hands again.
[Bella:] I couldn't breathe.
He hesitated-not in the normal way, the human way.
Not the way a man might hesitate before he kissed a woman, to gauge her reaction, to see how he could be received. Perhaps he would hesitate to prolong the moment, that ideal moment of anticipation, sometimes better than the kiss itself.
Edward hesitated to test himself, to see if this was safe, to make sure he was still in control of his need.
And then his cold, marble lips pressed very softly against mine.
What neither of us was prepared for was my response.
Blood boiled under my skin, burned in my lips. My breath came in a wild gasp. My fingers knotted in his hair, clutching him to me. My lips parted as I breathed in his heady scent. (13.231)
Edward and Bella are testing their limits. Edward constantly worries that he'll accidentally hurt Bella if he gets too close to her. But instead, Bella seems to be the one that's unable to control herself here.
[Edward to Bella:] "Are you still faint from the run? Or was it my kissing expertise?" How lighthearted, how human he seemed as he laughed now, his seraphic face untroubled. He was a different Edward than the one I had known. And I felt all the more besotted by him. It would cause me physical pain to be separated from him now. (13.255)
Bella is totally infatuated with Edward. She seems to be becoming addicted to his presence. Does this seem like normal teenage behavior, or are Bella's feeling more extreme?
[Edward to Bella:] "I'm just pleasantly surprised," he clarified. "in the last hundred years or so," his voice was teasing, "I never imagined anything like this. I didn't believe I would ever find someone I wanted to be with…in another way than my brothers and sisters. And then to find, even though it's all new to me, that I'm good at it…at being with you…" (14.174)
Edward is delighted. He has discovered romance after almost 100 years of being alone. He and Bella are in relatively equal positions because they are both experiencing romantic love for the first time.
[Edward to Bella:] "Thank you." He smiled. "You see," he continued, looking down now, "I wasn't sure if I was strong enough." He picked up one of my hands and pressed it lightly to his face. "And while there was still the possibility that I might be…overcome" – he breathed in the scent at my wrist –"I was susceptible. Until I made up my mind that I was strong enough, that there was no possibility at all that I would…that I ever could…" (14.180)
Edward had never kissed Bella because he did not think he could pull back. Finally, he convinced himself he was ready.
[Edward to Bella:] "I told you, most of those human desires are there, just hidden behind more powerful desires." (14.279)
Though Edward has sexual desires, he seems to be saying that his vampire thirst is a bit stronger of a "hunger," at this point.
[Edward to Bella:] "I don't think that…that…would be possible for us." (14.284)
Edward doesn't think they'll ever be able to have sex. But he seems to be OK with that. Mostly, he just enjoys being near Bella.
[Edward to Bella:] "That's certainly a problem. But that's not what I was thinking of. It's just that you are so soft, so fragile. I have to mind my actions every moment that we're together so that I don't hurt you. I could kill you quite easily, Bella, simply by accident." (14.286)
Edward thinks they shouldn't have sex because he's afraid he'll accidentally kill her.
[Bella to Edward:] "Of course not." I flushed. "I told you I've never felt like this about anyone before, not even close." (14.279)
This is both Edward and Bella's first romantic relationship.
[Edward to Bella:] "I know. It's just that I know other people's thoughts. I know love and lust don't always keep the same company." (14.280)
Edward knows sex and love don't always go together. In this case, Edward and Bella have love without sex.
[Bella:] "Your human instincts…" I began. He waited. "Well, do you find me attractive, in that way, at all?"
He laughed and lightly rumpled my nearly dry hair.
[Edward:] "I may not be a human, but I am a man," he assured me. (14.294-296)
Bella wonders if Edward is sexually attracted to her. She doesn't want to only be appealing to Edward's "vampire instincts" (smelling delicious).
[Edward to Bella:] "What am I going to do with you?" he groaned in exasperation. "Yesterday I kiss you, and you attack me! Today you pass out on me!" (15.100)
He should probably stop complaining and take her actions as enthusiastic compliments...
I wasn't so lost to the soreness of the fog of medication that I didn't respond to his touch. The beeping of the monitor jumped around erratically – now he wasn't the only one who could hear my heart misbehave. […] He leaned in slowly; the beeping noise accelerated wildly before his lips even touched me. But when they did, although with the most gentle of pressure, the beeping stopped altogether. (24.61)
Even wounded, in the hospital, and on pain medications, Bella is attracted to Edward.
[Edward:] "It seems that I'm going to have to be even more careful with you than usual." He frowned.
[Bella:] "I was not finished kissing you," I complained. "Don't make me come over there." (24.66-67)
Even in the hospital, the attraction is there.