Study Guide: Twilight by Stephenie Meyer - BookNotes

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ONLINE NOTES FOR TWILIGHT BY STEPHENIE MEYER

CHAPTER 21. Phone Call

Summary

Bella wakes and finds Jasper looking over Alice's shoulder: James has returned to the room with the VCR and it's light now, so she's sketching it out. Bella recognizes it as her mother's house. Alice calls Edward, while Jasper touches Bella to use his powers to help calm her down. Bella speaks to Edward, who says he and and Emmett and Carlisle are taking a flight from Seattle to meet up with her and take her somewhere safe, while Jasper and Alice will keep Renee safe. Bella begins to panic at how her loved ones are being threatened and Jasper tries to get her to sleep, but Bella refuses. Alice gets another call at 5:30 AM and tells Bella that Edward and the others will arrive at 9:45. Jasper is looking for a new place closer to Renee's house. The phone rings again and Alice answers then gives it to Bella; she hears her mother's voice calling her name and tries to calm her down. However, the next voice she hears isn't Renee's but James. He says he doesn't want to hurt Renee and instructs Bella to speak as if still talking to her mother and to go into the other room. She obliges and James instructs her to get away from Alice and James - Bella decides that the airport would be a good place to do that. James then adds that she must go to her mother's house and call the phone number she'll find next to the phone. Bella agrees to all this, including the instruction to not make anyone suspicious.

She hangs up, and decides that she will surrender to James and hope he will no longer threaten Renee or Edward. Bella goes back to the other room, tells Alice a lie about talking to her mother. She then asks Alive if she could deliver a letter to her mother, leaving it at the house. Alice agrees and Bella goes to the bedroom to write a message to Edward, apologizing for the choice she made and pleading that he not chase after James any further. She seals the letter in an envelope and hopes he would understand.

Notes

Notice the way James demands that Bella continue to pretend she is talking to her mother in order to fool Alice. In this manner, his sudden power over Bella becomes an oppressive mockery of parental authority, something she hasn't experienced much - after all, Renee is not a very mothering figure and Charlie has only begun as a full-time parent for her. Further, Bella's parents' lives are actually being threatened by the presence of James in her life, making this authority even more corrupt and evil.


CHAPTER 22. Hide-and-Seek

Summary

Bella returns to Alice and sees her in a shocked state, gripping the desk. Jasper arrives and panics, but Alice works her way out of her seeming trance. Bella asks Alice what she saw, knowing it was her own death, but Alice simply answers that she saw the same room as before. She asks if Bella wants breakfast but Bella says she'll eat at the airport. They prepare to leave the hotel and Bella asks Alice how her visions work, adding that Edward says they aren't definite and things change. Alice confirms this, saying some things are more certain than others, such as weather, but that people are harder because her visions are based on whatever course they're currently pursuing and a change in decision shifts the whole future. Thus, Bella knows that Alice couldn't see James in Phoenix until he decided to go there, nor did she see Alice in the mirror room with James until she made her own decision to do that.

At the airport, the three wait for Edward's plane to land. Bella gives Alice the letter to Edward in the unmarked envelope, then asks Jasper to take her to get something to eat. Along the way, she stops at the ladies' room and is able to lose him by going out through the other exit. She hopes on a shuttle to the Hyatt then grabs a cab to her mother's house. On the ride she imagines seeing Edward again and wonders where they would have gone. Once at Renee's house, she calls the number waiting for her and James instructs her to go to the ballet studio. She runs over and sees the studio is closed for spring break. She steps inside and hears Renee's voice - only to discover it's from a TV screen, and that James was using a VCR tape of Renee instead of holding her hostage. James apologizes for the ruse but asks Bella if it's better that her mother actually wasn't involved. Bella realizes her mother is still in Florida and safe and is indeed relieved, which puzzles James.

James asks Bella if she thinks Edward will avenge her and she mentions her request to him in the letter; James hopes differently, however, because hunting Bella was too easy and too quick; he is hoping for more of a challenge with Edward. He explains how he went to Phoenix to visit Renee, and also suspecting that Bella would indeed go to the place that she said she would; Victoria remained in Washington and passed along the information that Edward was flying to Phoenix, confirming his suspicions on Bella's whereabouts. James then directs Bella to a video camera, which will record his murder of Bella and motivate Edward to avenge her death despite her wishes.

James then speaks of the only other time a prey escaped him. This happened in the 1920s, when another vampire was fond of another human. This girl had been locked up in an asylum where the vampire worked and after he freed her, he turned her into a vampire to make her safe. This new female vampire had been institutionalized because she had visions. James had lost his human prey, now a strong new vampire, and so he killed the vampire who turned her instead. Bella realizes this new vampire was Alice.

James then circles Bella and when he attacks, she tries to run. He strikes her and sends her flying into the mirrors, then when she tries to crawl away he stomps on her leg to snap it. As he approaches again, she covers her face with her hand --at which point her eyes close and she drifts.

Notes

Alice's explanation of her precognitive abilities is interesting, as in the case of humans it's contingent on decisions made by the people being seen. As a result, fate is not something preordained, it isn't inevitable. Rather, it depends on what the people involved decide to do, they are the ones that set the causality in motion. By revealing himself as the reason Alice became a vampire, the metaphor of James as a corrupted parental authority continues, as he in effect "fathers" Alice's passage to the undead.


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