Chapter Number: Four
Chapter Name: Waking Up
Page Numbers: 93- 119 (Hardcover)
Date of Chapter: January 16th, 2006
Summary: The departure of Edward sends Bella into an emotionally unresponsive state. After several months in this numb, trance-like condition, Bella sufficiently manages to shun many of her teenage friends with her blatantly antisocial behavior. Meanwhile, Charlie’s unease regarding Bella’s apparent lifelessness brings him to the edge, and he urges her to move back with her mother in Florida. In order to placate her father, and have him retract his concerns, Bella promises to organize a social outing for that evening. Ultimately deciding on Jessica as her companion, together they make plans to see a horror movie entitled Dead End.
Bella is unconcerned about socializing with Jess as they ride up to Port Angeles, and she practices many tactics in order to keep from talking. When the movie starts, Bella is horrified at the romantic beginning, and excuses herself to the concession stand to avoid drudging up painful memories. Bella watches the bulk of the movie without reaction. In the climatic moment, the camera transitions between the heroine of the movie and the monster- the zombie.
The gruesome ending forces Bella to make a horrible revelation- that she was the latter of the two. Bella leaves the screening room early and sits just outside the theater, reflecting on her unfortunate discovery. Her mind wanders to what she wished her future held for her, being a vampire rather than a zombie. She promptly discards the thought because of its unpleasant connotations. Jess questions Bella as to why she left. Bella claims cowardice which surprises Jessica because she didn’t witness any outward signs of Bella’s fear.
They then decide to go out to eat somewhere. On the way to their destination Bella again lets Jessica control the conversation. Bella doesn’t notice when Jess suddenly stops talking, nor does she immediately realize the reason for the silence. Eventually though, her eyes fall upon the cause of the disturbance; just across the street, four men lounge outside a bar. Bella stops walking when she realizes how similar this night’s circumstances are to her last excursion in Port Angeles. Although still unsure, at the moment she thinks that these are the same individuals that she encountered previously.
Bella ignores Jessica’s pleads to stay away, and she continues to cross the street. The danger of the situation sends adrenaline coursing through Bella’s veins. The adrenaline is not accompanied by the usual fear as Bella closes the distance between her and the men. Halfway across the street, Jessica catches up with Bella and tries, unsuccessfully, to get her back across the street. Jessica’s question regarding her seemingly suicidal behavior reminds Bella of why she’s still living. She feels obligated to go on living for her parent’s sake, but more so for the promise that she made Edward long ago. As she realizes this, she feels guilty because she is doing exactly what Edward requested her not to do- putting herself into a dangerous situation.
After she dismisses Jessica and turns her attention back to the men, a familiar voice rings inside her head- Edward’s voice. It tells her to turn around. The voice does not bring Bella the pain she thought it would, instead it brings clarity. Her surroundings become instantly sharper, and she notices the smells and sights that she hadn’t initially. His voice urges her to keep her promise and to keep safe. Then it begins to fade away. She believes that the familiarity of the situation is what triggered her hallucination. Bella then comes up with two possibilities as to why this was occurring to her. Her first conclusion is that she is insane and merely hearing voices in her head. Her other explanation is that her subconscious mind is giving her exactly what she wanted.
The sound of his voice pulls her out of the numb state that she’s forced herself into for the past several months. Bella is extremely thankful for being able to hear his voice once again, and she is even more thankful to her subconscious for preserving the sound of his voice. After a few moments of deliberation, Bella decides that she would rather encourage the hallucination rather than have it disappear entirely, and she takes another step toward the men. To her relief, the voice resonates within in her mind once again. One of the four men outside the bar calls out to Bella. She converses with them briefly and rejects their invitations. She turns around and rejoins Jessica, who is clearly outraged at Bella’s behavior.
They finally make it to McDonald’s, and unlike previously, Jessica does not control the conversation. In fact, she hardly speaks at all. Eventually, they make it to Jessica’s car and she turns up the radio in order to avoid conversation with Bella, but Bella is distracted by her thoughts and is glad to have some time alone to contemplate things. She is still surprised that the numbness hasn’t returned. She’s more alert than she’s been for a long time. Bella thinks about how she struggles not to forget about Edward, but how she can not think of him, for fear of the pain that her recollections will evoke. She concludes that she will be able to endure anything as long as she knows that Edward exists somewhere in the world. Bella then reveals her reason for not wanting to go to Jacksonville like Charlie wanted. Being in Forks, with its familiar environment makes it easier for Bella to convince herself that he actually did exist at one point in time.
Charlie confronts Bella when she returns home about where she was. When Bella responds, Charlie notices that Bella has finally woken up. Bella goes up to her room and lies in her bed. She then experiences the crippling pain that she’s been expecting all along. She tries to retreat back into her numbness, but it doesn’t come. She then comes to realize that she can handle the crippling emotions. And this realization helps her grasp the fact that she is uncertain about what her future holds for her.
Characters Involved: Bella Swan, Charlie Swan, Mike Newton, Jessica Stanley, Mr. Varner
Time passes. Even when it seems impossible. Even when each tick of the second hand aches like the pulse of blood behind a bruise. It passes unevenly, in strange lurches and dragging lulls, but pass it does. Even for me.
~ Bella’s thoughts
It didn’t feel like the pain had weakened over time, rather that I’d grown strong enough to bear it.
~ Bella’s thoughts
"We watched zombies eat people. It was great.”
~Bella to Charlie when he asks what she did with Jessica
Important Information Learned:
We learn how Bella spent the past several months without Edward.
When Bella puts herself in dangerous situations that Edward normally would have disapproved of, she can hear his voice in her mind advising her against it.
She realizes how difficult it will be to preserve the memory of him without thinking of him. She doesn’t want to lose what she has left of Edward, but it is too painful for her to think about him.
Chapter Prepared By: Taxi