- On her return, Bella tells Edward she went Christmas shopping for Renesmee. She even shows him a gift that she got for Renesmee: a golden locket containing an inscription in French: "More than my own life." She senses that Edward knows she's keeping something from him, but that he doesn't know specifics.
- To give Renesmee and Jacob the best chance of making a getaway, Bella decides to put up a good fight. She wonders even if there will be any kind of afterlife for her and Edward on the other side.
- Edward, Bella, and Jacob spend Christmas with Charlie, and include the entire werewolf pack. They all seem to be excited for the fight.
- Jacob gives Renesmee a promise ring. In contrast to Edward, Bella no longer feels bothered by Jacob's commitment to her daughter, since she knows she'll soon be giving her to him for safekeeping.
- Bella also realizes that this might be the last time she'll see Charlie. She hasn't seen Renée since the wedding, but believes that her mother is too fragile to know about her new world. She plans to include a letter for her and Charlie along with the identification documents, and a letter for Renesmee herself.
- When they return to the house they learn that one of their friends, Alistair, has left. Amun also wants to leave, but not without Benjamin. He accuses Carlisle of stealing him away. Benjamin argues that he chooses to be with the Cullens.
- Eleazar's idea that the Volturi might manipulate their sacrosanct laws to gain more power causes heated discussions.
- The Romanian vampires don't care either way, but they express their concern that if Volturi win the fight, they'll leave with more power than they came with – there are many skilled vampires they'll be able to acquire from the Cullen team. The Romanians hold that they all must stand against the Volturi before that clan becomes too powerful, and they announce that they'll stand with the Cullens if it comes to a fight. Their pronouncement propels other friends to declare their allegiance in war as well.
- With the Volturi's arrival pushing closer, Bella worries about her ability to control her shield. "This thing I do, it's faulty, it's erratic! There is no rhyme or reason to it" (32.136).
- When she realizes that Renesmee can get into her head, she panics that her shield might have holes. Edward, on the other hand, believes that either Renesmee's mind runs on the same wavelength as Bella's, or that their daughter's gift is that no mind can keep her out.
- After picking up the documents from J. Jenks, Bella grabs a backpack out of Alice's room along with a large sum of money. She writes a note for Alice with the words "Rio," hoping that Alice will understand that Jacob and Renesmee will be heading to Rio (as they still need to find out about Renesmee's future) and that Alice might be able to reconnect with them.
- Edward and Carlisle patrol the clearing where Alice has foreseen the Volturi's arrival. Edward, Bella, and Jacob set up a tent in the forest and camp out with Renesmee. The situation reminds Bella of the one months ago, when she camped out with Edward and Jacob to keep her hidden from the army of newborns, led by Victoria (check out our analysis of Eclipse for more info). Bella remembers that, at that time, her relationship with Edward and Jacob was very painful. "Three different kinds of heartbreak that could not be avoided. Now everything was in perfect balance" (35.83).
- The night before New Year's Eve, snow falls and remains on the ground. The Cullens, their witnesses, and the werewolves await the Volturi in the clearing. Bella tells Renesmee that she loves her and is prepared that there will come a time when Jacob will take her away. Edward hears the Volturi approach.
These chapters are sweet...who's ready to see some Christmas with grandpa Charlie?...and mostly set-up.
Oh, Benjamin...so loyal to the Cullens already! Good for you! :)
For next week, we're looking at Breaking Dawn: Book 3 - Chapters 36 and 37.
Once again, summaries came from this site.