Summary: Chapter 3: Phenomenon

Ice and snow cover the roads, so Bella drives carefully to school. To distract herself from thinking about Edward, she thinks of Mike and Eric’s rivalry over her. At school, she realizes that Charlie put chains on her tires to keep her safe. As she stands at the back of her truck, she notices Edward standing four cars away, staring at her in alarm. She sees classmate Tyler Crowley’s van skidding toward her. Suddenly, Edward shoves Bella out of the van’s path, and she hits her head on the pavement. Bella can’t understand how Edward reached her so quickly, and she doesn’t believe him when he insists that he was right next to her. She sees imprints of hands denting the van. Bella and Tyler are taken to the hospital, where Tyler apologizes to her repeatedly. Dr. Cullen treats Bella and says she is fine to go home. Edward arrives to check on Bella. Before leaving the hospital, Bella confronts Edward about what happened, asking how he could be so fast and so strong. She becomes angry when he refuses to explain. That night, Bella dreams of Edward.

Summary: Chapter 4: Invitations

Bella dreams of Edward almost every night. In her dreams, she sees Edward walking away from her, and she can’t catch up to him. After the accident, Tyler follows Bella around at school, constantly apologizing and competing with Mike and Eric for her attention. Everyone insists they didn’t see Edward near her before the van crashed. Edward acts aloof and doesn’t speak to Bella, but she watches him whenever she can. His eyes grow darker every day. One day, Tyler, Eric, and Mike each ask Bella to the upcoming girls’ choice dance. Bella lies and says that she can’t go to the dance because she’ll be in Seattle that day. Bella encourages Mike to go with Jessica, as she knows Jessica likes him. That same day, Edward tells Bella that it’s best that they not become friends. The next day, Edward offers to drive Bella to Seattle, explaining that her truck couldn’t make the trip. He adds that even though he believes it would be better if they didn’t become friends, he’s tired of trying to stay away from her. Intrigued, Bella accepts his invitation.

Summary: Chapter 5: Blood Type

Mike makes plans for a beach party, and Jessica feels excited that he’s accepted her invitation to the dance. At lunch, Jessica points out that Edward is sitting alone and staring at Bella. Edward winks at Bella and invites her to sit with him. His eyes are golden again, and he tells her he’s given up trying to stay away from her, adding once more that she really shouldn’t be friends with him. Bella is annoyed and says that she can’t figure him out, especially his mysterious speed and strength. Edward tells her that maybe he’s not a “superhero” but instead a bad guy. When Bella says she doesn’t believe he’s bad, Edward replies that she’s wrong. Then he tells her he is ditching biology that day. 

In biology, students prick their fingers to determine their blood types. Bella feels faint at the sight of blood. Mike begins helping her to the nurse’s office, but Edward appears and carries Bella there. Mike follows and asks Bella if she’s still coming to the beach party that weekend, and she says yes. Edward gets Bella excused from her last class and insists on driving her home in his car. She invites Edward to the beach party, but when he learns the beach is La Push, he declines. He explains he’s going hiking with his brother and warns her to be careful at the beach.

Analysis: Chapters 3–5

Edward saving Bella from Tyler Crowley's skidding van serves as a turning point in the novel for many reasons. The suspense, action, and excitement of Bella's near-death experience are only outdone by the huge, cinematic image of Edward saving Bella from imminent danger in view of the entire high-school body. Edward’s actions show he values Bella enough to put his family at risk by displaying his superhuman strength in public, an act reminiscent of Bella's own selflessness. When it comes to people he loves, Edward puts their needs above his own, just like Bella. The crash scene also perfectly juxtaposes Bella’s slow response time with Edward’s exceptional speed and reveals why Edward stares at Bella so much. Edward views Bella as constantly in danger of imminent death, and the near crash is confirmation of that belief. For Bella, the crash confirms that despite all of Edward’s words to the contrary, he is different from other students in some fundamental way. Average students can’t do what she witnessed Edward do.

After the near-crash, Edward warns Bella to stay away from him while he simultaneously pursues her, outwardly displaying his internal battle. One reason Edward gives Bella for staying away from him is that he may be the proverbial bad guy, a false perception Edward has of himself because of what he is—a vampire. Traditionally, humans are good and vampires are villains. Edward tells Bella to fear him and to stay away, but he also refuses to keep his distance from her. Despite what he says, Edward continues to pursue Bella, confusing even himself with his illogical actions until he finally gives up and begins to spend time with her willingly. Edward's behavior shows that deep down he wants someone to know “what” he is, whether he can admit it to himself or not. Edward's push-pull relationship with Bella mirrors a conflict within himself. He wonders if a vampire can ever be good enough to be worthy of a human's love. Edward must determine what gives a being their morality: factors of identity over which they have no control or the choices they make with their free will.

Throughout the first half of Twilight, Edward hides his true nature, but plenty of clues foreshadow his identity as a vampire. His speed, strength, and pale cold skin are obvious hints, but there are other more subtle clues. Edward skips biology class due to a blood typing assignment, showing that he already knows what the teacher is planning before class has begun. Edward knows he can’t keep his disguise up in a room full of blood but especially not in a room with Bella's blood. Edward takes Bella to the nurse’s office, snickering at the irony of her fainting at the sight of blood because craving blood is his primal instinct. Edward seems to want to go to La Push beach, but he declines with little explanation. Bella takes notice of Edward’s darkening and lightening eyes and how the darkness coincides with his unfriendly and withdrawn demeanor. The use of color, specifically in Edward’s eyes, is symbolic. Light represents good, and dark represents bad. The darker Edward’s eyes are, the thirstier he is for blood. Unknown to Bella, Edward’s eye color is a visual indicator of how much danger she’s in at any moment.