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Twilight: Of Sues, Sparkles, And Other Things Beginning with S
Yon Troper

[table of contents]
Chapter 5: In Which There Is Some Awkward Banter About Spiders
Chapter 5: Blood Type (mine's an O+ if you're wondering, Stephenie)

Bella gets to English late. And the teacher speaks to her in a disparaging tone, which, of course, is apocalyptically terrible. Mike seems to have finally caught on to Bella's meanness and doesn't sit next to her this time, but at least he and Eric greet her at the door. And he talks to her! About their beach trip at the weekend, no less! It's not going to rain, according to the weather forecast (if it's the British weather forecast, he's gonna face buckets of rain), but still only be in the high forties. Not interesting. The only interesting thing is that Jessica, Angela and Lauren have all followed Bella's suggestions for who to ask to the dance, because Bella is the almighty matchmaker. (The book doesn't show you this, but Angela soon dumps Eric because he's, like, totally not hot. Well, not really, but it'd be good.) Edward isn't in the cafeteria. I'm noticing a pattern here. Bella just wants to sulk like an idiot because of what Edward said this morning. How dare he do something nice for her! The only way Jessica can break through Bella's "abstraction" (what the?!) is to say that Edward is, in fact, here. And he's smiling crookedly, too. ("Crookedly"? There's Meyer's not-English again.)

Then Bella goes to sit with Edward, on a whim. And he's decided to be friends, despite warning her not to be again. Yep, Pattinson's got it right when he said Eddie-boy's bipolar. Bella asks, for some reason, she's been trying to figure out what Edward is. Sorry, but I don't think Bruce Wayne and Peter Parker are horrifically pale bipolar emo vampires. Edward chuckles for the billionth time, and disappointingly, she doesn't actually say this (she does ask him if he was bitten by a radioactive spider later, though). Then Bella yells at him again, being sarcastic about him being "frustrating". She doesn't like double standards. The irony of that statement is stunning. Edward says that people are easy to read, and that Bella's boyfriend (who is probably Mike) quite rightly thinks Edward is being unpleasant to Bella. Also, Bella can't be read, because Edward's mind reading power (SPOILER, sorry) doesn't work on empty heads. Then we get the worst lines in the book so far.

"Aren't you hungry?", he asked, distracted.
"No." I didn't feel like mentioning that my stomach was already full - of butterflies.

Once we've recovered from that "joke", Bella asks if he was bitten by a radioactive spider. That actually would've been pretty funny, if it hadn't been explained earlier. Edward responds, "What if I'm not a superhero? What if I'm the bad guy?" Well, by all rights, he should be the bad guy. After some more awkward banter, the bell goes and Edward decides to ditch class, for the actually pretty good reason that they're doing blood typing. (Are Bella's only classes Biology and English?)

Mr. Banner the biology teacher teaches them how to do blood typing, which, like 80% of this book so far, is not that interesting. Then something interesting happens. Bella faints as soon as he pricks Mike's finger for some blood. Bella doesn't faint or go to sleep quite as much as Eragon, but it's close. And honestly, this is completely pointless. I know there's some people who feel squeamish about blood - hell, maybe some even faint at the sight of it - but there's no reason for this in the plot, and it probably won't have any effect whatsoever.

Mike lead her out of the classroom so she can sit down. Then Edward shows up, and chuckles. (I wish I'd counted the number of chuckles in this book. Oh well.) Mike was taking her to the nurse, but Edward, for some reason, picks her up and carries her there. The nurse attends to her, instead of calling her psychosomatic like I would have done, and - yay - more awkward banter! Or not, because there's a boy in Bella's class coming in as well. Bella is apparently sick because she can smell the blood. This could have been an interesting plot development, if it hadn't been dumped instantly and never mentioned again. Mike hates Edward, by the way. This is not important.

Bella decides to ditch and go home, because she has PE (or gym to you Yanks), and Edward is driving her. I'd criticise her for being lazy, but that would be the pot calling the kettle black, so I won't. Alice is going to drop Bella's truck off after school, so at least that's taken care of. Explaining to Charlie, on the other hand...

Both Bella and Edward love Debussy. That, by the way, is one of the only things they have in common. Then Edward randomly asks Bella what Renee's like. What she's like isn't important, because after the extremely dumb climax of this book, she pretty much disappears. Although Bella does get another good opportunity to diss Charlie for no reason - she "has too much of him in him". Ouch. Score one more Butt Monkey point for Charlie. We get more talk about why Bella moved to Forks and about Renee and Phil's marriage. The important thing here is that Edward wonders if Renee would want Bella to be happy with whoever she ends up with, and if he could be scary. Yes, Edward's scary, but not in a good way.

The chapter ends, not with a bang but with a whimper, as Edward says he loves Carlisle and Esme, and asks that Bella not die on her trip to the beach with Labrador Mike and everybody else, due to her purported spastic clumsiness. At least he gets to smile crookedly again. And who doesn't like the word "crookedly"?
19th Feb '11 10:37:49 PM flag for mods
comments
Hey, we Yanks call it PE all the time! It's a regional thing.

Brits also seem to think crackers (of the Christmas and New Year's) variety are completely nonexistant here, but that too is pretty regional.

Oh uh right. The LB. I think I might actually find banter about radioactive spiders funny... but I imagine ol' Meyer doesn't have the chops to pull it off in that quirky, geeky way that makes it fun.
FreezairForALimitedTime 19th Feb 11
The only interesting thing is that Jessica, Angela and Lauren have all followed Bella's suggestions for who to ask to the dance, because Bella is the almighty matchmaker.

I detect Fixer Sue! So there's another Mary Sue type to add to Bella's list.

I actually laughed at the line about butterflies. It's so corny it's funny.
BonsaiForest 22nd Feb 11
depending on the writer Bruce Wayne horrifically pale bipolar emo not a vampire most of time though
faradayangel 27th Feb 11
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