Life and Death Chapter 9: Theory
Beau and Edythe continue discussing her supernatural abilities as she drives recklessly. At least in this story a woman can be a confident and dangerous driver who frets about her love interest driving his own car. Feminism on full display here, folks.
Edythe admits she was able to locate Beau because she followed his scent, and Beau hypothesises that Edythe can’t read his mind because he’s “a freak”
Why are the Bs meant to be such outsiders when we have no evidence that they think differently than anyone else? I understand that this book gave blandos everywhere hope that a mysterious vampire would come along and say intense and untrue things like you’re different. But is that really a hope we want in the world? For the love of all that is good, teenagers of the world, have intense, all-consuming crushes, but also at least have one friend and one thing you enjoy. Like puzzles! Pretzels! Something! Anything!
There are a lot of small differences between the two books during this car scene. Edythe acts more comfortingly to Beau (touches his hand) and a little more feistily, while Beau babbles a little less than Bella. He even courageously reaches for Edythe’s hand after she lets go of his!
Beau cuts to the chase faster than Bella as they discuss what Jules told him:
We drove in silence for another minute, and the word vampire seemed to get bigger and bigger inside the car. It didn’t feel like it belonged to her, really, but more like it had the power to hurt her. I tried to think of something, anything to say to erase the sound of it.
The Bs both tell the Es it doesn’t matter. Edythe freaks out while Edward stays calm. Edythe is “shrill” while Edward “incredulous” and “angry”, as a man should be if he’s meant to be taken sexily.
They discuss loads of “vampire” facts. For instance,
“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.”
“I’ll show you sometime,” she promised.
Spoiler: It’s because vampires sparkle in the Twilight universe. Oh. How they sparkle.
Feelings are confessed in a roundabout way, and Edythe is full of anguish because THIS IS WRONG. Despite all her protest, though, she says this:
The darkness slipped by us in silence. I realized the car was slowing, and even in the dark I recognized the landmarks. We were passing into the boundaries of Forks. It had taken less than twenty minutes.
“Will I see you tomorrow?”
“Do you want to?” she whispered.
Um, excuse me. Hi, yeah, I just had to read like ten pages about how you thought Beau was an idiot because he didn’t care that you’re a vampire and wants to be around you. Then you went on and on about how you couldn’t let this happen. Obviously he wants to. The issue has never been whether or not he wants to see you!
Beau makes Edythe promise to let him sit with her tomorrow at lunch. Nothing says teenage, vampire romance like furtive agreements to sit together in the cafeteria.
The tension builds as Beau leans in for the kiss, but Edythe stops him and tells him he’s going to have to be more careful. Their love manages to be so complicated and boring.
“I can do better than that,” I interrupted quickly. “Just tell me the rules, and I’ll follow them. Whatever you want from me.”
“Seriously. Tell me to do something, and I’ll do it.”
When I read the above, I wondered, “Did we just witness the inspiration for Fifty Shades? ” I checked The Original Text, but Bella and Edward have a completely different conversation! Bella gets really teary over their ~forbidden love~ and then Edward starts asking her if she was going to scream for help when she was being chased.
“You were going to fight them?” This upset him. “Didn’t you think about running?”
“I fall down a lot when I run,” I admitted.
“What about screaming for help?”
“I was getting to that part.”
He shook his head. “You were right — I’m definitely fighting fate trying to keep you alive.”
(This plan to fight back was formed before the plan to jump in front of a car…)
And then on top of that, Edward is the one to tell Bella she’s sitting with him at lunch. When you gender-swap your next story, kids, always remember to have the boy ask the girl out.
Anyway, the part where Beau asks Edythe to tell him what to do isn’t even in the original text. I have to echo Matthew here; is Meyer getting inspiration from EL James who get her inspiration from Meyer? IT’S FIFTY SHADES OF TWILIGHTCEPTION UP IN HERE. Inception jokes were my favourite thing to come out of Inception. It truly revolutionised the lexicon around things within things within things.
The texts realign when the Es ask the Bs not to go into the woods alone. There are more dangerous things than brooding vampires in the woods, apparently. They also breathe on the Bs who swoon over the sweet smell of their breath. Yuck.
Jess calls Bella wanting details, but no friends call Beau. BOYS don’t talk about GIRLS on the phone!
Though their realizations are phrased differently, the Bs inform us of their love for the Es. Here’s Beau’s:
There were a few things I knew for sure. For one, Edythe was an actual vampire. For another, there was a part of her that saw me as food. But in the end, none of that mattered. All that mattered was that I loved her, more than I’d ever imagined it was possible to love anything. She was everything I wanted, the only thing I would ever want.
What? Why? How? You’ve had like three conversations! Slow your roll.
Chapter 10: Interrogations
This one sounds serious! What could these interrogations be about?
Edythe picks Beau up before school, and she asks him some questions…but it doesn’t feel like an interrogation yet. Beau asks a lot of questions about how Edythe’s siblings didn’t drive with her to school. I’m not convinced that’s the interrogation either.
At school, Edythe reads Jeremy’s mind and informs Beau that he thinks they’re secretly dating and wants to know what base they got to. Uh oh. This feels like the start of an interrogation.
But first. Wacky humor!
“Um, what should I say?”
She started walking, and I followed, not paying attention to where she was leading.
After a second, she looked up at me, her face relaxed and smiling again. “That’s a good question. I can’t wait to hear what you come up with.”
I guess the interrogation must be from McKayla. She’s all jealous until Beau breaks “man code” and tells her how gosh darn swell Jeremy thinks she is! This seems to appease McKayla.
For some reason they start not only discussing the upcoming Sadie Hawkins dance, but then prom. Who is taking who? Who will ride the limos together? Vampires? It’s all kicking off.
Making the title of this chapter proud, Jeremy starts interrogating Beau about every little thing with Edythe. Beau demurs.
“You’re not sitting with us at lunch today, are you?”
His face was suspicious again, and more guarded now. Obviously, he’d thought I’d be eager to show off, to sell Edythe out to make myself look cooler. After all, Jeremy and I had been friends for a little while. Guys told each other this kind of stuff. It was probably part of the man code thing I’d invented. He’d assumed my loyalty would be with him… but now he knew he was wrong.
….I wasn’t aware Beau (and Meyer?) invented man code. I can’t even begin to understand why that claim is in here.
Also, for some reason Jeremy is a dick to Beau, and Beau is really evasive. In Twilight Jess is nice, and Bella is really open about being into Edward. Totes not gender-swap related, I’m sure.
Edythe is waiting for Beau after class, and she generously lets him carry her bag. I think it’s worth noting here that they have some genuinely cute dialogue. It’s not all bad books and good times. Sometimes it’s good moments in a bad book and good times.
Archie (Alice in the original) is the sibling Edythe is closest to. Archie smiles at Beau. Part of the family already, basically.
Some of Edythe’s siblings are furious with her. Edythe and Beau admit their immediate obsession was mutual. If only I believed in how special and true their romance is. Beau is in love with Edythe because…she is super hot? A fascinating, exciting, hot vampire? Okay, sure. Edythe is in love with Beau because…I can’t even hear my thoughts over those crickets chirping
“Well, look at me,” I said, unnecessarily, as she already was. “I’m absolutely ordinary—well, except for bad things like all the near-death experiences and being so uncoordinated that I can barely walk. And look at you.” I waved my free hand toward her and all her unsettling perfection.
She smiled a slow smile. It started small but ended with the full array of dimples—like the grand finale at the end of a fireworks show on the Fourth of July.
“I can’t argue with you about the bad things.”
“Well, there you go.”
“But you’re the least ordinary person I’ve ever met.”
But like, WHY? In Twilight Bella even has a conversation with Jess about what else Edward has going for him other than being hot, and Bella comes up with nothing! Because she can’t say, “He’s a vampire.” All Edward can come up with is that all the guys in school thought Bella was hot on her first day.
Anyway, we never find out why Edythe thinks Beau is so special. Instead, Edythe talks more about how she should leave Beau alone. She’s dangerous. Blah blah.
We find out that Edythe hunts bears. Badass as shit.
“Bears?” I gasped.
“You know, bears are not in season,” I added sternly, to cover my shock.
“If you read carefully, the laws only cover hunting with weapons,” she informed me.
She watched my face with enjoyment as that slowly sank in.
“Bears?” I repeated with difficulty.
“Grizzly is Eleanor’s favorite.” Her voice was still offhand, but her eyes were scrutinizing my reaction. I tried to pull myself together.
I just find the idea of the Cullens, gender-swapped or not, taking down bears to be really amusing. Can’t explain it, but that’s how I feel.
They talk about bears and hunting for awhile, and then it’s class time.