Reading Breaking Dawn: Chapter 20 (New)
July 8th, 2009 at 12:05 am by Kaleb Nation
The song for this chapter is Paradigm by All Together Seperate
I’m beginning to wonder if Stephenie is attempting to set records for both the longest and shortest chapter titles in the same book. In just a few chapters, we went from Chapter 17’s “What Do I Look Like? The Wizard Of Oz? You Need A Brain? You Need A Heart? Go Ahead. Take Mine. Take Everything I Have.” to the miniature and cryptic “New”.
What is new, you ask? I’m hoping that what is new is either ‘New Bones’ or ‘New-found Joy At Still Being (More Or Less) Alive’ for Mrs. Bella Cullen. How she survived the last chapter, I still cannot explain. How I survived the fountains of blood scene, I cannot explain either.
It’s startling when this chapter begins with Bella actually seeing something. She’s been in so much pain, chapters of it, and been hurt by the pregnancy so much that it seems now, she is opening her eyes for the first time in a very, very long while. The sharpness of her vision, so much that she can see the very filaments of the light bulbs, makes me wonder if this is what Edward feels every day as a vampire: this power, this completeness that takes over Bella so much that her new abilities shock even her as she experiences them.
It has become something to where she does not need to do anything to live anymore. She doesn’t require oxygen, or food, or anything to sustain her body — it’s all a habit now, a bonus to her powers and existence. I wonder what it must feel like to be a vampire in this way, in those first few moments when you realize you need nothing, except blood of course. Every human is concerned to varying extents about how they will get their next meal, how to not get run over when they cross the street, how to get from where they are to someplace different. When all this worry is immediately lifted from Bella because she suddenly has the power to overcome them all, it certainly has to be liberating in a way no human could ever experience. It is invincibility, and immortality.
Bella is like a new person — and suddenly, she is different with Edward. It seems as if their marriage wasn’t the real wedding at all. This new and wonderful Bella, now fully a vampire, is the real Bella who Edward married in the first place. Now that they are the same, I feel that they are suddenly one.
Even in the midst of all this serious business I can’t help myself when Carlisle says…
“[Charlie] thinks you’re in Atlanta right now, undergoing tests at the CDC. We gave him a bad number, and he’s frustrated.”
I also wonder what it would be like to be a vampire and to see yourself for the first time. How much does someone change when they are made ‘perfect’? I wonder how much of Bella stayed the same as before and how much was made different. If she was so beautiful to Edward in the beginning, I don’t see why he would want her to change at all, because if she changed too much she wouldn’t be the same as before.
This brings up the question of if being perfect is actually as good as it might appear, from the point of view of Bella being a vampire. There is such thing as grossly beautiful — that strange type of beauty that certain supermodels strive to achieve, because it is what is said to be beautiful, but is actually not attractive. There is a great difference between the two, even though they intersect. Bella didn’t have to be perfect for Edward to love her, and didn’t have to look like a movie star for people to think she was attractive. Perfection in the sense that every feature is formed flawlessly does not make someone beautiful, because then everyone would just be boringly identical.
I try to imagine then what Bella would look like, when in Edward’s eyes there was really nothing she could do to be better. Is there something glowing about her now, something that seems to breathe a new and more glorious light into her soul that makes her beautiful and happy? Maybe it has something to do with the fact that she is now like him — she is one of his kind, and finally, truly, someone he can love completely and without fear of hurting her.
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Posted in Breaking Dawn