After a full day’s drive with Alice and Jasper to Phoenix and a rest in a hotel, Bella wakes up at 3:00 a.m. the next morning. The hotel is near the airport in case they have to leave quickly. She goes into the living room with Alice and Jasper, and they all sit and wait for Carlisle to call. Bella is worried, but Jasper tells her that she does not need to worry for anyone else’s sake, for all of them are strong. Bella is the only one they are worried about.
Bella asks Alice to explain how someone becomes a vampire, and Alice tells her, although Edward does not want Bella to know. Alice says that vampires are poisonous, and if a human is bitten but not killed, the venom moves through the person’s body. The transition occurs very painfully over a period of a few days. It is also a difficult achievement for a vampire to turn another, since the vampire has a very hard time stopping once the human’s blood has been tasted.
Alice suddenly gets a vision that something has changed: she sees James waiting in a room full of mirrors, but that is all she can make out, since he has not fully formed his plans. This means, among other things, that he will elude Edward and Carlisle. Carlisle calls soon afterward, and she tells him her vision. Then Bella speaks to Edward, and he tells her that James has gotten on a plane. They think he is heading back to Forks to start over.
Alice draws the room she saw in her vision, and Bella recognizes it at as the ballet studio that she went to when she was much younger. She says that it was around the corner from her mother’s house, but she has not had any interaction with it since she was little. She gets nervous, though, when she remembers what Edward said about Victoria being near the school—where her records would be—so she leaves a message for her mother to call her as soon as possible.
Alice has another vision of James, this time in a room with a VCR. She draws what she saw, and Bella looks over her shoulder, immediately recognizing her mother’s house, although she does not reveal it to them. Alice calls Edward and then tells Bella that he is coming to pick her up and take her somewhere far away. But Bella realizes that James is stalking her family and loved ones, and she realizes that the only way the hunt can end is with her.
Bella’s mother calls, and Alice hands her the phone. Bella walks into the next room to take the call, but instead of her mother, a man’s voice replies. He tells Bella that her mother’s life depends on her getting away from her friends and following his instructions exactly. She agrees to try. She tries to deal with her agony before Jasper comes back and can sense it, and she starts to formulate a plan. Assuming a bad result, she writes a goodbye letter to Edward asking him not to go after James once she is gone.
Bella goes out into the living room and sees Alice bent over the table, gripping its edges tightly. Jasper returns, and they ask her what she saw. She says, “Bella,” then says that she only saw the same room again. Bella thinks that she has seen what will happen to her. They get ready to go to the airport, and Bella finishes her plan while she is in the shower.
At the airport, Bella goes to get some food, and Jasper comes with her. She asks if he minds waiting while she goes to the bathroom. As soon as she walks into the bathroom, she sprints through the other door towards the elevator not too far down the hallway. She gets to the first floor and sprints to the exit. There are no cabs, only a shuttle to the Hyatt, so she jumps on it.
At the Hyatt, Bella rushes into a cab and gives the driver her mother’s address. There she calls the number James wrote on the whiteboard, and he answers and tells her to go to the ballet studio around the corner from her house. Bella rushes there and goes inside. She suddenly hears her mother’s voice calling for her, and she turns and sees a home video playing on the VCR.
James is suddenly inside the room. Bella realizes that her mother was never in danger at all, and she feels greatly relieved. James explains how he tracked her. He is disappointed that it was so easy. He shows her that he plans to tape himself killing her, in order to incite Edward to come after him so he can have more of a challenge. He explains that the only way she could have escaped him was if Edward had made her into a vampire, which had happened once before with Alice, the only person ever to escape him.
When he is done taunting her, he starts to circle her, crouching down, his lips curling back in a snarl. Bella tries to sprint for the emergency exit although she knows she has no chance. He stops her easily, throwing her against the mirrors.
She tries to crawl away, and he steps on her leg, breaking it easily. When he hits her next, her scalp is cut by the glass, and blood starts pouring down her face. She starts to lose consciousness, feeling grateful that now it will be over quickly, for he will not be able to resist the temptation of her blood for much longer.
In this section, Bella finds out just how someone becomes a vampire. The process begins with great self-control on the part of the first vampire, who must bite the person but not go so far as to kill. This form of asexual reproduction differs from human sexual reproduction, which often involves the choice to lose self-control in a burst of passion.
The themes of fate and free agency are very pronounced in this section. Alice has multiple visions of the future, but this does not imply an iron fate. Seeing the future includes seeing the results of free choices. Indeed, her visions are not final, for when someone changes their mind or their intentions, Alice’s visions change. This is because people’s free decisions do, in fact, make a difference. Bella’s decision to sacrifice herself for her family and Edward’s sake, specifically, changes Alice’s vision profoundly, and in this sense free agency does exist within the context of the novel. (Of course, the author of a novel has almost total control of what the characters say, think, and do, so on another level, it is important to remember that characters are merely constructions on the page and are not living beings.)
Sacrifice is also a very significant theme in this section, particularly at the end. Bella makes the decision—changing Alice’s vision—to sacrifice her life, her own future, to protect her family. Bella hopes to prevent Edward from fighting James and dying while doing so. This decision, although painful, is not difficult for her, because all along she has been much more worried about everyone else than about herself. Even now she does not have enough sense of self-worth to value herself above the one she loves, even though Edward’s family values her enough to put themselves at some risk for her sake.
Bella’s self-sacrifice also illuminates James’s true evil, because he makes use of her desire to give herself up in order to save others. It is too easy to manipulate her, though, so he next will use Bella’s death to incite Edward to chase him down and start a new fight. He enjoyed chasing and hunting her to some degree, but her protection was not very effective. The point now is to slowly torture her to death, to make it as painful as possible, so that Edward will come after him when he sees the tape. He also enjoys the harm.
Once Bella is bleeding, however, he ironically has an interest in self-control. He cannot just kill her quickly if the tape is going to be effective. Instead, he now must act like Edward, keeping himself in check so that he does not impulsively kill Bella. The end of this section is the highest moment of suspense in the novel to this point, with Bella poised to die, James seemingly within moments of finishing the job, and Edward nowhere in sight.