Summary: Chapter 22: Hide-and-Seek

At the airport, Bella slips away and takes a cab to Renée’s house. She races inside and calls the number posted next to the phone. James answers and tells Bella to go to the dance studio. Once there, she finds the door unlocked and enters. Renée’s voice calls out to her, and Bella sees a TV playing an old family film from when Bella was twelve. Bella realizes that James tricked her; her mother was never in danger and is still safe in Florida. When James asks if Edward will avenge her, Bella replies that she left Edward a letter asking him not to. James says that he will leave a message for Edward too, and positions a digital camera to record what he’s about to do. He explains that he once thirsted for Alice, when she was a young human in an asylum. To save her from James, an older vampire turned Alice into a vampire. James taunts Bella, saying that Edward was too weak to do the same for her. Then he viciously attacks her, smashing her head in the mirrors and breaking her leg. Bleeding, she hopes she will die quickly, and she loses consciousness as James comes toward her. 

Summary: Chapter 23: The Angel

Bella dreams she’s underwater and hears a deep, wild snarl. She feels an excruciating pain in her hand and then believes she is dead because she hears an “angel” (Edward) calling her name. In the background, she hears growling, a snap, and then wailing, which abruptly stops. The angel sobs and keeps calling her name, but at first Bella can’t reply. Finally, she wakes enough to cry out. A calm voice assesses her injuries. Suddenly, Bella’s hand feels as if its burning, and she screams for someone to stop the fire. Carlisle has been attending to her injuries and realizes that James bit Bella. He tells Edward he must suck the venom from her hand before it’s too late. Edward fears that he’ll lose control when he tastes Bella’s blood, but he decides to do it. Alice calms Bella as Bella tries to tell Alice that James knew where she came from. Bella falls asleep in Edward’s arms as he carries her out of the building.

Summary: Chapter 24: An Impasse

Bella wakes up in a hospital room. Edward tells her that his being able to stop drinking her blood is proof of his love for her. He explains that after he pulled James off Bella, Emmett and Jasper killed James. Alice watched the recording that James was making and now knows the story of her life as a human. Bella’s mother is at the hospital too. To explain Bella’s injuries, Edward said that he flew to Phoenix to persuade Bella to return to Forks, and that on her way to his hotel room, Bella fell down two flights of stairs and through a window. Renée enters the room and lovingly hugs Bella. She tells Bella that she and Phil have bought a house in Florida and that Bella can come live with them. Bella replies that she wants to stay in Forks and admits that Edward is part of the reason why. 

When Bella’s mother leaves, Edward tells Bella that she should move to Florida and he will stay in Forks, where he can’t hurt her. Bella pleads with him to stay with her and asks why he refuses to change her into a vampire. They argue, both refusing to budge on their stance. Edward admits that Alice had a vision of Bella as a vampire. As Bella falls asleep, she says she’s betting that Alice’s vision is correct.

Analysis: Chapters 22–24

On the surface, the climax of Twilight features Edward saving Bella's life from the villain James, but the battle also requires Edward to face his greatest internal challenge: choosing good in moments of great temptation. James's inability to understand Bella and Edward's relationship makes sense because neither Edward nor anyone in his family understands the relationship at first. Conventional thinking suggests a human and a vampire cannot be in a relationship. To James, Edward's inability to kill Bella is a sign of weakness, but in reality, Edward's unwillingness to kill her or even let her get hurt based on her own choices has been a sign of his strength. As Edward comes upon Bella's injured body, he faces his most difficult test yet, having enough self-control to taste Bella's blood and still act in her interest even though his every instinct tells him to kill her. While James is the obvious physical antagonist of the story, another antagonist against Edward in this scene is his own failure to believe that he can be moral and good.
Fire and burning play a significant part in the climactic scenes at the dance studio. The motifs of fire and burning appear in many ways throughout the entire story: the look in James’s eyes “burns” with thirst for Bella’s blood, Bella’s hand burns from James’s bite setting off the start of her transition, and the eventual killing of James is done by tearing him apart and burning the pieces. Both the beginning and end of a vampire’s life are surrounded in hellfire, while a “healthy” vampire is cold to the touch. With all of the allusions to good and evil, the fire motif symbolizes conventional ideas of evil like hell. To underscore this point, the title of the chapter in which Edward shows up to rescue Bella is "The Angel." When Bella comes back to consciousness after James’s attack, she describes an unimaginable burning pain in her hand from James’s venomous bite as if she's been to hell and back. Edward managed to save Bella not just from a vampire, but from evil itself.
Edward’s and Bella’s understanding of the consequences of James’s attack are very different.  Edward views it as an example of why he shouldn't be around Bella; she views it as proof that he won't kill her no matter how great the temptation. Furthermore, Alice's vision of Bella as a vampire thrills Bella while it strikes fear in Edward. Bella can't understand why Edward didn’t turn her, ensuring they would never lose one another. Edward considers turning Bella into a vampire to be taking away her life and goodness, while Bella views her human life as a barrier to being with Edward forever. This conflict remains unresolved. While Edward is fully against the notion of ending Bella’s life, Bella makes it clear that becoming a vampire is her choice, not his. Just as Edward can choose to be good, Bella can choose to be a vampire.