/ Language: English / Genre:reference, / Series: Twilight

The Twilight Saga The Official Illustrated Guide

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Fans of the №1 New York Times bestselling Twilight Saga will treasure this definitive official guide! This must-have hardcover edition-the only official guide is the definitive encyclopedic reference to the Twilight Saga and provides readers with everything they need to further explore the unforgettable world Stephenie Meyer created in Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse,and Breaking Dawn. With exclusive new material, character profiles, genealogical charts, maps, extensive cross-references, and much more, this comprehensive handbook is essential for every Twilight Saga fan.


Dear Reader, Working on this guide has given me a chance to reflect on how much this story has changed my life. One of the best ways things have changed is the opportunity I‟ve had to get to know so many of my readers. I‟m always impressed by the funny, caring, interesting people you are. I truly feel that with your enthusiasm and dedication you‟ve brought as much to this series as I have. Little, Brown and I have been working hard to make this guide something special for you, and I hope that we‟ve succeeded. I would never presume to expect that all the questions have been answered, but (fingers crossed) I think we got the big ones, plus many that no one‟s ever asked me before. Enjoy!

Much love, Steph

A Note From the Publisher

Since the initial publication of Twilight in 2005, readers have asked thousands of questions about the Twilight Saga universe — everything from ―Where do Stephenie Meyer‘s ideas come from?‖ to ―How does vampire venom work?‖

This guide expands upon the world of the Twilight Saga, adding histories for its characters and providing other details that might not have made it into the books themselves but are a key part of the people and stories that make up the Saga. You‘ll find outtakes from the books — such as the story of how Emmett was mauled by a bear — as well as never-before-seen background notes on main plots and subplots. We hope that these added details shed light on such favorite characters as the Cullens and Quileutes; on such new characters as Nahuel and Garrett; and even on the human residents of Forks, most of whom are unaware of the supernatural creatures all around them.

Also included in this guide are artistic interpretations of the series: everything from new art created just for this book to a gallery of art conceived by talented fans to the many covers that have appeared on different editions of the books around the world.

Because music is such an instrumental part of Stephenie‘s writing process, this guide also includes the official playlist for each book in the Twilight Saga, alongside quotes from the books that reveal what each song represents. Also featured is an extended conversation between Stephenie and Shannon Hale, award-winning author of The Books of Bayern and the Newbery Honor winner Princess Academy, during which they discuss how the Twilight Saga began and some of the challenges and surprises Stephenie encountered along the way.

Thank you for being a part of the world of the Twilight Saga — it wouldn‘t be the same without you.

When Megan, my publisher, came to me with the idea of doing an interview for the guide, I started to come up with a list of reasons why I couldn‟t in my head. Interviews always make me uncomfortable, and really, what question haven‟t I answered at this point? But then she went on, presenting her inspiration of having the interview conducted by another author, and I was intrigued in spite of myself. I love hanging out with authors, and I don‟t get a chance to do it very often. So I oh-so-casually suggested my “baffy” (Best-Author-Friends-Forever), Shannon Hale. And the upshot was, I got to hang out with Shannon for a whole weekend and it was awesome. We did find time to do our “interview,” which was without a doubt the easiest and most entertaining interview I‟ve ever done. This interview took place August 29, 2008, which affects some of the directions that our conversation went, but I was surprised when reading through it again at how relevant it still is.


SH: So, let‘s look at the four different books first. Twilight—it started with a dream.

SM: Right. Should I tell the story — and get it on record?

SH: Do you want to?

SM: I‘d like to. This story always sounds really fake to me. And when my publicist told me I needed to tell it — because it was a good story for publicity reasons — I felt like a lot of people were going to say: ―You know, that‘s ridiculous. She‘s making up this silly thing to try and get attention.‖ But it‘s nothing but the cold hard facts of how I got started as a writer.

Usually, I wake up around four o‘clock in the morning. I think it‘s a baby thing — left over from knowing that somebody needs you — and then I go back to sleep. That‘s when I would have the most vivid dreams — those morning hours. And those are the ones you remember when you wake up.

So the dream was me looking down on this scene: It was in this meadow, and there was so much light. The dream was very, very colorful. I don‘t know if that always comes through in the writing — that this prism effect was just so brilliant.

I was so intrigued when I woke up. I just sat there and thought: So how does that end?

SH: The sunlight on Edward‘s skin?

SM: Yeah. There was this beautiful image, this boy, just glittering with light and talking to this normal girl. And the dream really was about him. She was also listening, as I was, and he was the one telling the story. It was mostly about how much he wanted to kill her — and, yet, how much he loved her.

In the dream I think I‘d gotten most of the way through what‘s chapter 13 now. The part where he recounts how he felt in each specific previous scene was obviously put in later, because I hadn‘t written those earlier scenes yet. But everything else in that scene was mostly what they were actually talking about in the dream. Even the analogy about food was something that I got in my dream.

I was so intrigued when I woke up. I just sat there and thought: So how does that end?

Does he kill her? Because it was really close. You know how, in dreams, it‘s not just what you hear, but you also kind of feel what‘s going on, and you see everything that the person in your head sees. So I knew how close it was. I mean, there was just a thin, thin line between what he was going to choose. And so I just wondered: How would they have made that work? What would be the next step for a couple like this?

I had recently started realizing that my memory was going, and that I could no longer remember whom I had said something to yesterday. My youngest was just passing one, and the next one was two, and I had an almost-five-year-old. So my brains were like oatmeal — there was nothing left. And so I knew I was going to forget this story! That realization was something that really hurt me.

You know, when I was a kid, I always told myself stories, but I didn‘t write them down. I didn‘t have to — my memory was great then. So I could always go back and revisit the one about this, the one about that, and go over and refine it. But this one was going to get lost if I didn‘t do something about it. So after I got the kids‘ breakfast done, I only had two hours before swim lessons. And, even though I should have been doing other things, I started writing it out.

It wasn‘t the dream so much as that day of writing that made me a writer.

It wasn‘t the dream so much as that day of writing that made me a writer. Because the dream was great, and it was a good story. But if I‘d had my memory [laughs] it would have stayed just a story in my head. And I would have figured out everything that happened, and told it to myself, but that would have been it.

But writing it down and making it real, and being able to go back and reread the sentences, was just a revelation to me. It was this amazing experience: Wow! This is what it‟s like to write down stories. I was just hooked — I didn‘t want to quit.

I used to paint — when I was in high school, particularly. I won a few awards — I was okay with the watercolors. My mom still has some hanging up in her house. Slightly embarrassing, but they‘re decent. I was not a great painter. It was not something I should have pursued as a career, by any stretch of the imagination. I could see a picture in my head, but I could not put it on the canvas the same way it was in my head. That was always a frustration. When I started writing I immediately had a breakthrough: I can make it real if I write it, and it‟s exactly the way I see it in my head. I didn‘t know I was able to do that. So that was really the experience that made me a writer, and made me want to continue being one.

SH: So you started out writing out the meadow scene. Where did you go from there?

SM: I continued to the end, chronologically — which I don‘t always do anymore.

SH: So you didn‘t go back to the beginning… because you wanted to know what was going to happen next.

SM: Yeah. I was just like any reader with a story — you want to find out what happened.

The backstory was for later. I wasn‘t really that worried about it — I wanted to see where it was going to go.

So I kept writing. The last chapter just kept getting longer and longer — and then I made epilogue after epilogue. There were so many things I wanted to explore — like why this was this way, and why this was that way, and how Bella first met Alice, and what their first impressions were. So I went back and did the beginning, and found it really exciting to be able to flesh it out and give reasons for everything that had happened later.

I had lettered all my chapters instead of numbering them. So I went back and did A, and I think that I had chapter 13 being E. Because I thought, maybe, five or six chapters of material would cover the beginning… and then it was twelve, so I was surprised about that. [Laughs]

SH: You were surprised about how much had really happened beforehand?

SM: Yeah, it just kept going on. I was thinking: Wow, this is taking a long time. And that‘s where I finally ended, which was the last sentence in chapter 12. And I knew I had crossed the continent with the railroad, and this was the golden spike that was being driven. It was all linked together. And that was that moment of shock, when I thought: It‟s actually long enough to be considered a book-length thing of some kind.

SH: You really didn‘t even consider it like a book until then?

SM: No. [Laughs] No, I think if I would have thought of it as a book, I never would have finished it. I think if I would have thought, halfway in, You know, maybe I can make this into a book… maybe I could do something with this, the pressure would have crushed me, and I would have given up. I‘m really glad I didn‘t think of it that way. I‘m glad I protected myself by just keeping it about this personal story for me alone.

SH: And you were thinking of yourself as the reader the whole time.

SM: Yes, yes. Well, I‘m kind of shy, and I obviously had to get over that in a lot of ways.

But the essential Stephenie, who is still in here, has a really hard time with letting people read things that she writes. [Laughs] And there‘s a lot of enjoyment, which I‘m sure you‘ve experienced, in letting somebody read what you write. But there‘s also the fear of it — it‘s a really vulnerable position to put yourself in.

SH: I was in a creative-writing class once and the teacher asked us: If we were stranded on a desert island, what two books would we take? And one of the books I chose was a notebook — an empty notebook — so I could write stories. And there was a classmate who said:

―If you were on a desert island by yourself, why would you write stories?‖ And I thought: Why are you in this class? [SM laughs] Because if the only purpose you have for writing is for someone else to read them, then why would you do this? It didn‘t make sense to me. But there is something extraordinary about writing for yourself and then sharing that.

SM: I‘ve never thought of the desert-island story. But that would be the perfect writing conditions, as far as I‘m concerned. That would be great. I wouldn‘t want a spiral notebook, though — I‘d want a laptop. Typing is so much better. I can‘t read my own handwriting half the time.

SH: So you started immediately on the computer, when you started writing this?

SM: Yeah.

It‘s kind of funny to know exactly what day you started being a writer!

SH: Now, how long was it from when you wrote down the dream until you finished the first draft?

SM: I wrote down the dream on June second. I had it all marked on my calendar: the first day of my summer diet; the first day of the swim lessons. It‘s kind of funny to know exactly what day you started being a writer! And I finished it around my brother‘s wedding, which was — he just had his anniversary — I think it was the twenty-ninth of August?

SH: So this was done in less than three months — just an outpouring of words.

SM: Yeah.

SH: Was the story going through your head all day long, even when you weren‘t writing?

SM: Even when I was asleep — even when I was awake. I couldn‘t hold conversations with people. All my friends just thought that I had dropped them, because I lived in my own world for a whole summer.

But here was this really hot, muggy, nasty summer. And when I looked back on it later, it seemed like I‘d spent the whole summer in a cool, green place, because that‘s how distant my brain was from what was really going on. I wasn‘t there — which is sad. [Laughs]

I was physically there for my kids, and I took care of them. And I had my little ones, one on my leg and one on my lap, most of the time I was writing. Luckily, the TV was behind me [laughs] so they could lean on my shoulder, you know, watch Blue‟s Clues while I was typing.

But I don‘t think you can keep up that kind of concentrated effort for more than a summer. You have to find some balance eventually.

SH: You have to come up for air.

SM: Yeah.

SH: How did you? You‘re so busy as a mom. Every moment of the day, with three little kids, is occupied. Suddenly, you‘re inserting this huge other effort into it. How did you allow yourself to do that?

SM: A lot of the time it didn‘t feel like it was a choice. Once I got started writing, it felt like there was so much that I had been keeping inside for so long.

It was a creative outlet that was the best one I‘ve ever found.

SH: Not just this story. But very active storytelling and creating, I‘m sure, had been percolating in you for years.

SM: It was a creative outlet that was the best one I‘ve ever found. I‘ve done other creative things: birthday cakes and really great Halloween costumes, if I do say so myself. I was always looking for ways to creatively express myself. And it was always kind of a frustrating thing — it was never enough. Being a mom, especially when kids are younger — when they get older, it‘s a lot easier — you have to be about them every minute. And a lot of who Stephenie is was slipping away.

SH: Yeah.

SM: The writing brought that back in with such force that it was just an obsession I couldn‘t… I couldn‘t be away from it. And that was, I think, kind of the dam bursting, and that huge surge at first. And then I learned to manage it.

SH: You would have to. But what a tremendous way to start!

SM: It was. It felt really good — it felt really, really good. And I think when you find something that you can do that makes you feel that way, you just grasp on to it.

SH: So you had never written a short story before.

SM: I had not ever considered writing seriously. When I was in high school, I thought of some stories that might be a good book, but I didn‘t take it seriously, and I never said: ―Gosh, I‘m going to do that.‖ I considered it momentarily — the same way I considered being a professional ballerina.

SH: Right.

SM: Oh, and I was going to be so good [SH laughs] in my Nutcracker. I would have been fantastic — except that, obviously, I have no rhythmic skill, or the build for a ballerina, at all. [SH laughs] So it was like one of those nonsensical things — like wanting to be a dryad.

And then, when I was in college, I actually wrote a couple chapters of something… because I think it‘s the law: When you‘re an English major, you have to consider being an author as a career. But it was a ridiculous thing. I mean, there‘s no way you can make a living as a writer — everybody knows that. And, really, it‘s too hard to become an editor — that‘s just not a practical solution. If you‘re going to support yourself, you have to think realistically. You know, I was going to go to law school. I knew I could do that. I knew that if I worked hard, I‘d be kind of guaranteed that I could at least get a decent job somewhere that would pay the bills.

There‘s no guarantee like that with writing, or anything in the publishing industry.

You‘re not guaranteed that you will be able to feed yourself if you go down that path, and so I would have never considered it. I was — I still am — a very practical person.

SH: So you really had to go into it from the side… by fooling yourself that you‘re not actually writing a book.

SM: I think there was this subconscious thing going on that was protecting me from thinking of the story in a way that would keep me from being able to finish it.

I always needed that extra fantasy world. I had to have another world I could be in at the same time.

SH: Right. But, of course, you were a reader. You‘ve been an avid reader for your whole life.

SM: That was always my favorite thing, until I found writing. My kids and my husband used to tease me, because my hand would kind of naturally form this sort of bookholder [SH laughs], this claw for holding books. Because I had the baby in one arm and the book in the other — with the bottle tucked under my chin and the phone on my shoulder. [Laughs] You know, the Octopus Mom. But I always had a book.

I always needed that extra fantasy world. I had to have another world I could be in at the same time. And so, with writing, I just found a way to have another world, and then to be able to be a lot more a part of it than as a reader.

SH: I think it‘s part of multitasking. I wonder if most writers — I know moms have to be this way, but most writers, too — have to have two things going on at once just to stay entertained.

SM: Exactly. [Laughs]

SH: It‘s not that I‘m unsatisfied, because I love my life. I‘m a mom, too, of small kids—

and I love my husband — but I also need something else beyond that. I need another story to take me away.

SM: You know, it‘s funny. As I‘ve become a writer, I started looking at other writers and how they do things, and everybody‘s very different. I read Atonement recently, and I was interested in the way Ian McEwan writes about being a writer through the character‘s standpoint…. She‘s always seeing another story. She‘s doing one thing — but, then, in her head, it becomes something else, and it turns into another story.

It‘s kind of like what you were saying about writers needing that extra reality to escape to. I think that writers maybe do have just that need for more than one reality. [Laughs]

SH: You know, we‘re not really sure if it‘s insanity or it‘s a superpower.

SM: But it‘s an insanity that doesn‘t hurt anybody.

SH: Right. It‘s kind of friendly, cozy, fuzzy insanity.

On The Writing Process

SH: I think you must write much better first drafts than I do.

SM: I doubt that.

SH: Really? Are they pretty bad?

SM: I think so. I have to go over them again and again, because I don‘t always flesh it out enough. I write it through so quickly that I have to go back and add things. I tend to use the same words a lot, and I have to consciously go back and take out things like that. And I don‘t always get them. My first drafts are scary.

And I cannot read a page of anything I‘ve written without making five changes — that‘s my average.

SH: How do you go about rewriting? With Twilight, did you send it off immediately, or did you go back and start revising it?

SM: I probably read it, I don‘t know, fifty to a hundred times before I sent it anywhere.

And I cannot read a page of anything I‘ve written without making five changes — that‘s my average. So even now that Twilight is ―finished‖—quote-unquote — oh, I‘d love to revise it. I could do such a better job now. And I have a hard time rereading it. Because if I read it on the computer, I want to go in and change things — and it drives me crazy that I can‘t.

SH: Yeah. I try not to read anything that I‘ve already published.

SM: If I read it in the book form, I can usually relax and kind of enjoy it. I like to experience the stories again, because I see it like I did the first time I saw it. But sometimes it‘s hard not to be like, ―Oh, I hate that now. Why did I do it that way?‖ [Laughs]

SH: That would be writers‘ hell: You‘re continually faced with a manuscript that you wrote years ago and not allowed to change it.

SM: [Laughs] Well, then, that‘s every writer‘s reality, right? [Laughs]

SH: I don‘t know if you feel this way, but once a book is written and out of my hands and out there, I no longer feel like I wrote it. I don‘t feel like I can even claim the story anymore. I feel like now it belongs out there, with the readers.

SM: I feel that way about the hardbound copy on the shelf. There is a disassociation there. If I look at it on a shelf, and it seems very distant and cold and important, I don‘t feel like it‘s something that belongs to me. When I read it, it does.

SH: I guess I haven‘t reread my books. I listen to the audiobooks, actually — one time for each book — and I have enjoyed that. The people who did my audiobooks are a full cast, so it‘s like this play, almost.

SM: Oh, that‘s so cool.

SH: They say things differently than I would have, but instead of being wigged out by it, I actually like it. Because it‘s as though I‘m hearing a new story, and I‘m hearing it for the first time.

SM: See, I can‘t ignore my mistakes as much when I hear it on audio. I have tried to listen to my books on audio, and I cannot do it. Because I hear the awkwardness in a phrase when it‘s spoken aloud, and I just think: Oh, gosh! I shouldn‟t have phrased it that way. And there‘ll be other things where I hear the mistakes a lot louder than when I read through it and kind of skip over them with my eyes.

That was one of my favorite parts — reading it.

SH: Now, by the time you finished Twilight, you thought, This is a book—and then you started to revise. Did you revise just to, like you said, relive the story? Or did you have a purpose?

SM: Well, while I was writing I would revise while I was going. I‘d start and go back and read what I‘d written up to that point before I started. And some days I‘d spend the whole day just making changes and adding things to what I‘d written. That was one of my favorite parts — reading it. That surprised me, you know…. But then it‘s the book that‘s perfect for you, because you wrote it for yourself, and so it‘s everything that you want it to be.

And when I put the ―golden spike‖ into it, I looked at it and felt… kind of shocked that I‘d finished it. And then I thought maybe there was a reason I‘d done all this, that I was supposed to go forward with this. Maybe there was some greater purpose, and I was supposed to do something with it. Because it was such an odd thing for me, to write a book over the summer; it was so odd for me to feel so compelled about it.

The one person who knew what I was doing was my big sister Emily. But my sister‘s so: Everything‟s wonderful! Everything‟s perfect! You shouldn‟t change a single word! [SH laughs]

She‘s so supportive; I knew that it was not a big risk to let her see it. So it was the combination of thinking, I finished this! and Emily saying, ―Well, you have to try and publish it. You have to do it.‖ I don‘t know how many times we talked when she‘d say, ―Stephenie, have you sent anything out yet?‖

So then I revised with a purpose. And I revised with a sense of total embarrassment: Oh my gosh. If anyone ever sees this I‟ll be so humiliated. I can‟t do it. And then Emily would call again, and again I‘d feel this sense like: Maybe I‟m supposed to. Then I started doing all the research, you know… like looking for an agent. I didn‘t know that writers had agents. I thought only athletes and movie stars did that.

So that was intimidating and off-putting: I need an agent? This sounds complicated. Then I had to find out how to write literary queries. And summing up my story in ten sentences was the most painful thing for me.

SH: Horrible.

SM: It does not work well. [Laughs] And it was also pretty painful having to put out this letter that says: ―Hi, this is who I am; this is what I‘ve written; this is what it‘s about. I have absolutely no experience, or any reason why I think that you should actually pick this up, because who am I? Thank you very much, Stephenie Meyer.‖ [Laughs] That was hard.

And sending them out — I don‘t want to remember that often. Because you know how you kind of blank out things that are unpleasant — like childbirth and stuff? It was such a hard thing to do. Back in the neighborhood where I lived at the time, you couldn‘t put mail in your mailbox—

kids stole it — so you had to drive out and go put it in a real mailbox. And to this day I can‘t even go by that corner without reliving the nauseating terror that was in my stomach when I mailed those queries.

SH: Wow.

SM: See, I didn‘t take creative-writing classes like you. I didn‘t take the classes because I knew someone was going to read what I would write. I didn‘t worry about the writing part — it was letting someone else read it. My whole life that was a huge terror of mine: having someone know what goes on inside my head.

With every book, I always see the part that I think people are going to get mad about, or the part that‘s going to get mocked.

SH: So how have you? Because, obviously, millions of people now have read what you wrote. Is it still terrifying for you, every time you put a book out?

SM: Yeah… and with good reason. Because the world has changed — and the way books are received is different now. People are very vocal. And I do not have a lot of calluses on my creative soul — every blow feels like the first one. I have not learned how to take that lightly or let it roll off of me. I know it‘s something I need to learn before I go mad — but it‘s not something that I‘ve perfected. And so it‘s hard, even when you know it‘s coming. You don‘t know where it‘s coming from — a lot of them are sucker punches.

With every book, I always see the part that I think people are going to get mad about, or the part that‘s going to get mocked. With Twilight, I thought: Oh gosh. People are just going to rip me apart for this — if anybody picks it up. Which they‟re not going to, because they‟re going to read the back and say: A book about vampires? Oh, come on — it‟s been so done. So I knew it was coming.

But there were always some things I wasn‘t expecting that people wouldn‘t like. I mean, with everything you put out, you just have to know: There are going to be people who really like it, and that‘s going to feel really good. But there are going to be people who really dislike things that are very personal to me, and I‘m just going to have to take it.

SH: But it‘s so terrifying. I don‘t know how you even have the courage to do it every time. The book of mine that I thought was going to be my simplest, happiest book, just a sweet little fun book that people would enjoy — that was the one that got slammed the hardest. Like you said, it was things I never could have anticipated that people didn‘t like.

As I look back on it, I think if I had a chance, I would take those parts out, or change those things that people hated. But I didn‘t know at the time. And so now, as I‘m writing another book — I know there are things that people are going to hate. But I don‘t know what they are.

[SM laughs] If I only knew what they were, I would be sorely tempted to change them to try and please everyone! I do the very best I can, but you can never anticipate what it is that people are going to react to.

SM: See, I have a very different reaction to that, because I can‟t change it — it is the way it is. I mean, there are things I can do in editing — and I can polish the writing. I know I can always do better with that. And I know that, even in the final form, if I could have another three months to work on it, I would never stop polishing, because I can always make every word more important.

But I just can‘t change what happens, because that‘s the way it is. That‘s the story: Who the people are dictates what happens to them. I mean, there are outside forces that can come in, but how the characters respond to them eventually determines where they‘re going to be. Once you know who they are, there‘s no way to change what their future is — it just is what it is.

And so my reaction, when the criticism is really bad and really hard, is: I wish I would have kept this in my computer. I should have just held on to this work and have it be mine alone.

Because sometimes I wonder: Is it worth it to share it? But then you feel like you‘re not doing your characters a service with that — they deserve to live more fully, in someone else‘s mind.

Yes, I know I sound crazy! [Laughs]

SH: No. I totally, totally understand that. I remember hearing writers talk about how their characters are almost alive, and almost have a will of their own. And I thought they were kinda full of crap [SM laughs] but there is something to it. I think that it‘s a balance, though. There‘s the idea of these characters that are alive in my mind, and then there‘s me, the author. And I have some power to control the story, and to try and make it a strong story — but, then, the characters also have some power to say no.

SM: Yeah.

You can‘t change who they are to make the story go easier.

SH: For me, writing is finding a balance between that sort of transcendental story and my own power of writing — not letting myself overwrite them too much, and not letting them overrun me.

SM: Yeah. See, I find that difficult — because, to me, you create a character, and you define them, and you make them who they are. And you get them into a shape where they are final. Their story isn‘t, but they are who they are — and they do feel very real. You can‘t change who they are to make the story go easier.

So sometimes things happen in the story because my character, being who he is, can‘t do anything different. I‘ve written him so tightly into who he is that I cannot change his course of action now, without feeling like: Well, that‟s not in character — that‟s not what he would do.

There‟s only one course now. And sometimes it‘s hard, when the course goes a way that‘s difficult to write.

On Characters Coming To Life

SH: So how much did you know about Jacob and his future when you were writing Twilight?

SM: Jacob was an afterthought. He wasn‘t supposed to exist in the original story. When I wrote the second half of Twilight first, there was no Jacob character. He started to exist about the point where I kind of hit a bit of a wall: I could not make Edward say the words I‟m a vampire.

There was no way that was ever coming out of his mouth — he couldn‘t do it. And that goes back to what we were talking about with characters. You know, he had been keeping the truth about himself secret for so long, and it was something he was so… unhappy about, and devastated about. He would never have been able to tell her.

And so I thought: How is Bella ever going to figure this out? But I had picked Forks already as the story‘s location, and so then I thought: You know, these people have been around for a while, and they‟ve been in this area before. Have they left tracks — footprints — somewhere, that she can discover an older story to give her insight?

That‘s when I discovered that there was a little reservation of Quileute Indians on the coastline. I was interested in them before I even knew I was going to work them into the story. I thought: Oh, that‟s interesting. There‟s a real dense and different kind of history there. I‘ve always kind of been fascinated with Native American history, and this was a story I‘d never heard before.

This is a very small tribe, and it‘s really not very well known, and their language is different from anyone else‘s. And they have these great legends — even one that‘s similar to the Noah‘s Ark story; the Quileutes tied their canoes to the tops of the tallest trees so they weren‘t swept away by the big flood — that I thought were really interesting.

And they have the wolf legend. The story goes that they descended from wolves — a magician changed the first Quileute from a wolf into a man, that‘s how they began — and when I was reading the legend I thought: You know, that‟s kind of funny. Because I know werewolf people and vampires don‘t get along at all. And how funny is it that there‘s that story, right here next to where I set my vampire story.

SH: That‘s so cool, that kind of serendipity that happens in storytelling.

SM: It felt like, Now it‘s on! Now I know how it has to be! What kismet to happen. And so Jacob was born — as a device, really — to tell Bella what she needed to know. And, yet, as soon as I gave him life, and gave him a chance to open his mouth, I just found him so endearing. He took on this personality that was just so funny and easy. And you love the characters you don‘t have to work for.

And Jacob was not an ounce of work. He just came to life and was exactly what I needed him to be, and I just enjoyed him as a person. But his appearance in chapter 6 was really it — that was all he was in the story. And then my agent loved this Jacob, and she‘s never gotten over that.

She was one hundred percent Team Jacob all the time.

What a world it would be if we knew that all these little legends around us are absolutely real!

SH: [Laughs] And, you know, I am, too. I love Jacob.

SM: Oh, I love Jacob, too. So when my agent said: ―I want some more of him,‖ I thought: You know, I would love to do that. But I don‟t want to mess with this too much. I wanted to have my editor‘s input before I started making any major changes. And my editor felt the same way: ―You know, I like this. Are you going somewhere with this wolf story?‖

So when I started the sequel, I knew there were going to be werewolves in it. Because it just seemed like all these stories that are pure fantasy, that are myths, are coming true for Bella.

And then there‘s Jacob. Here‘s this world that he just thinks is a silly superstition. Then I thought: What if all of it were real? What if everything that he just takes for granted is absolutely, one hundred percent based in fact? What a world it would be if we knew that all these little legends around us are absolutely real! I can‘t even imagine being able to wrap my mind around that.

And so I knew that the sequel I had already started on would be about finding out that they were werewolves. And it wasn‘t New Moon—it was much closer to Breaking Dawn.

Because the story had originally skipped beyond high school fairly quickly. But my editor said:

―Well, I‘d like to keep the story in high school, because we are marketing the first book this way.

And I just feel like there‘s so much that must have happened that we miss if we just skip to Bella being a grown-up.‖ And I said: ―Well, you know, I could always make my characters talk more — that‘s not a problem. Let‘s go back and have this kind of stuff happen earlier.‖ So I had a chance to develop it.

By the time I got to Breaking Dawn the characters were so fleshed out — and their allegiances were so strong to whatever they hated or loved — that it made the story just a whole lot richer when I came to it the second time, because there was so much more backstory to it.

SH: I have to go back to the point that Jacob exists because Edward couldn‘t say, ―I am a vampire.‖ So Edward is what created the necessity for Jacob. Just as Edward‘s existence, and nearness as a vampire, made Jacob into a werewolf. I just think it‘s interesting that those two characters, who are sometimes friends and sometimes…

SM: Not.

I think that, in reality, it‘s never one boy — there‘s never this moment when you know.

There‘s a choice there, and sometimes it‘s hard.

SH: … enemies, can‘t seem to live without each other. They completely are born from each other.

SM: Jacob was born from Edward… also because of — I guess you have to say it was a flaw — Edward‘s inability to be honest about this essential fact of himself. Although it was an understandable flaw — it was something that he was supposed to keep secret. You know, it wasn‘t something that you just say in everyday passing conversation: ―By the way [laughs], I‘m a vampire.‖ It‘s just not a normal thing.

Jacob‘s character also became an answer to the deficiencies in Edward — because Edward‘s not perfect. There were things about him that didn‘t make him the most perfect boyfriend in the whole world. I mean, some things about him make him an amazing boyfriend, but other things were lacking — and Jacob sort of was the alternative. Here you have Edward, someone who overthinks everything — whose every emotion is overwrought — and just tortures himself. And there‘s so much angst, because he has never come to terms with what he is.

Then here you have Jacob, someone who never gives anything a passing thought and just is happy-go-lucky: If something‘s wrong, well, okay — let‘s just get over it and move on. Here‘s someone who‘s able to take things in stride a little bit more, who doesn‘t overthink everything.

Someone who‘s a little rash. He does seem foolish sometimes, just because he doesn‘t pause to think before he leaps, you know?

That was sort of the opposite of Edward‘s character in a lot of ways. It gave a balance to the story and a choice for Bella, because I think she needed that. There was an option for her to choose a different life, with someone that she could have loved — or someone who she does love.

I always felt like that was really necessary to the story. Because when I write, I try to make the characters react to things the way I think real people would.

I think that, in reality, it‘s never one boy — there‘s never this moment when you know.

There‘s a choice there, and sometimes it‘s hard. Romance and relationships are a tangle, and this messy thing — you never know what to expect, and people are so surprising.

I do know what would have happened if Edward hadn‘t come back. You know, I know that whole story — how it went down, and what their future was.

SH: So for you, was the storyline inevitable? Or were there points when you were writing where you thought the characters might have made one choice or another?

SM: It‘s a funny thing — because it was inevitable. From the time I started the first sequel, I always knew what was going to happen. With Twilight I had no idea what was going to happen — it just sort of happened. But after I knew where it was going, I knew Edward and Bella were going out together. As you start to write stories you get twist-offs of things — there are three or four or five different ways it could have gone, and none of them were the right way. I knew what the real way was.

But I do know what would have happened if Edward hadn‘t come back. You know, I know that whole story — how it went down, and what their future was. I know what would have happened if this character had changed — when he did one little thing here, or that. There are always a million different stories — you just know which one it is that you‘re going to write. But that doesn‘t make the others not exist.

SH: And I think that comes through in the writing — that you are aware of these alternate realities. I think the reader becomes aware of these other realities, too. And that‘s nice, because then it‘s not predictable. You don‘t know exactly what‘s going to happen, because you can see there are other ways it can go.

SM: I think that‘s why the alternate stories develop — because you have to make it suspenseful; there has to be conflict — and there has to be, hopefully, some mystery about where it‘s going to go. If it‘s so clear that something specific is obviously going to happen, well, nobody wants to read that. So where‘s the suspense going to come from? It comes when you start to realize: Well, this other thing could have happened. Even though you know where you‘re going with it.

SH: I love that.

SM: It‘s all very circular. Something happens within something else, but the thing that happened is somehow the birthplace of the other one, too. It‘s very confusing [laughs] in the head of a writer. At least, for me.

SH: But it is like life, in that I think we are all aware of how if we‘d made a different decision, we would be living in a different reality. And you can think about the other ones, but you live the one that you‘re in. The story has to live in the reality it‘s in.

SM: I think my fascination with that very concept kind of comes through in Alice‘s visions of the future, where there are fourteen million of them. As characters make choices, they‘re narrowing down which visions can actually happen. Alice sees flashes of the future possibilities coming from the choices they‘ve made. But if they make different choices, it becomes a whole new future. And that‘s what happens to us every day. You choose to go to Target today [laughs] and you don‘t know how that‘s going to impact everything in your future, because of one decision. I‘d always been really fascinated with that concept, and I enjoy science fiction that sort of deals with those strands.

SH: So, if you knew — that morning you woke up after having the dream of Edward and Bella in the meadow — if you knew the reality that would happen after you sat down and wrote it, would you still write it?

SM: You know… I wonder if I could have. The pressure would have been so immense. If I‘d been faced with knowing: If you sit down and write today, eventually you‘re going to have to speak in public, in front of thousands of screaming people; you‘re going to have to travel around the world and live on Dramamine and Unisom; and you‘re going to have to be away from your family sometimes; and you‘ll be more successful than you could ever possibly have dreamed, but there‘s going to be more stress than you could have ever thought you were able to handle — I don‘t know what my decision would have been.

Probably, because I‘m a coward, I would have jumped back under the covers and said: [high, squeaky voice] ―I‘m not ready!‖ [Laughs]

I was never really sure where I wanted to be in ten years, but Bella knows.

SH: I guess that‘s why it‘s good that we don‘t know what‘s going to happen in advance. I mean, if Bella had known everything that was going to happen…

SM: See, Bella would have gone through it exactly the same way. I know what my characters would do. They‘re very, very real to me. I know what they would say if I had a conversation with them. I know if I said this, Jacob would respond like this. And even if he knew exactly how it was going to end, and all of his efforts were going to be for naught, he would not change one tiny thing he did. Because he wouldn‘t be able to say to himself: Well, at least I tried.

He needed to know that he did everything that he could — because that‘s who he is.

And Bella wouldn‘t change anything, either, because eventually, she was going to get what she wanted, and what she wanted her life to be. And if you‘re very sure about what you want from your life, if you‘re absolutely positive — then you can make that decision and say: ―I won‘t make any changes, because this is what I want.‖

I never had that kind of absolute certainty and focus in regular everyday things when I was a teenager — I was never really sure where I wanted to be in ten years, but Bella knows. And so she walks through it the way a person walks across hot coals — because they know what they want on the other side. [Laughs]

On The Rewards Of Writing

SH: What‘s the most important thing for you to get out of the writing? Why do you do it?

SM: Originally, I wrote because I was compelled. I mean, it wasn‘t even like a choice.

Once I started, it was just… I had to do it. It was similar to the way, when you start a book that‘s really good or extremely suspenseful, you can‘t put it down. At the dinner table, you have it under your leg — and you‘re peeking down there, so your husband won‘t catch you reading while you‘re eating dinner. It‘s like until you know what happens, you‘ll have no peace.

And there was a great deal of joy in that — although it wasn‘t a calm kind of joy. [Laughs]

There was also some frenzy.

I wrote the rest of the books because I was so in love with the characters in the story that it was a happy place to be. But by then, I had to become a little bit more calculated about the writing process. I spent more time figuring out the best ways to proceed… like how outlines work for me, or is it better to write out of order, or in order? I‘m still working on my ways. But it‘s still for the joy, when I actually sit down and write.

You know, there‘s a lot of other stuff you have to do as a writer — with editing and touring and answering a million e-mails a day… all of that stuff that‘s a grind and feels like work. But when I get away from that, and when I‘m just writing again — and I have to forget everything else in the world — then it‘s for the joy of it again.

SH: And, you know, it‘s funny, because I totally agree. But you meet some writers who are not yet published — and they‘re so anxious and earnest and need to have that first publication come. What I want to say to them is: Don‘t hurry it.

SM: Yeah.

You miss being able to write in a vacuum — where it‘s just you and the story, and there‘s no one that‘s ever going to say anything about it.

SH: The reason you‘re a writer is because you‘re telling stories. And everything that comes after publication has nothing to do with why you‘re a writer. The business stuff, like you said, and the anxiety of how the book is doing and the publicity — and, you know, dealing with negative reviews or negative fan reactions — all that stuff is not really what you‘re yearning for.

What you‘re yearning for is the story. And the best thing to do is just enjoy that process and that journey.

SM: And you miss it when it‘s gone. You miss being able to write in a vacuum — where it‘s just you and the story, and there‘s no one that‘s ever going to say anything about it. I find that I can‘t write unless I put myself in that vacuum.

SH: But the characters have to almost come in on their own….

SM: I know. You have that experience of a character talking in your head, where you don‘t feel like you‘re giving them the words. You‘re hearing what they‘re saying, and it sounds like it‘s the first time you‘re hearing it, and you‘re just writing it down. Unless you have that experience, you can‘t understand that this is actually a rational way to be. [Laughs]

SH: I know, I know. Not that anybody who chooses to write books for a living is actually rational

On Endings and Inevitability

And so the endings, to me, are always inevitable. You get to a point where there‘s no other way it can go.

SH: I think that, with certain kinds of stories, if you preplan a happy ending, it feels so false. I have had a couple stories like that, where I decided: This is not going to be the happy ending people are going to want, but we‟re just going to have to live with it. And then a character swoops in or something happens to change the problem and take it out of my hands. I think that kind of ending can feel more real and satisfying. You can‘t force it, though.

SM: No. Usually, the endings become impossible to avoid, because of whatever is growing in the story. There‘s nothing you can do after it‘s set in motion — it just keeps going.

Sometimes I don‘t see something changing at first. It‘s like… say, when you change direction by one degree, and you end up on a completely different continent, even though you turned just the slightest bit. Things like that‘ll happen that change the course. But by the time you get to the end, there‘s no… there‘s no more leeway for changes.

And so the endings, to me, are always inevitable. You get to a point where there‘s no other way it can go. If I tried to do something different, I think it would feel really unnatural. But I rarely try. [Laughs] It‘s like: Let‘s just let this be what it is. This is the way the story goes.

It gets complicated because, as the author, I see the first-person perspective from more than one person‘s perspective.

SH: Now, with New Moon, there was a way that it could have ended that was very different. And what changed the course of those events was happenstance.

SM: It wasn‘t altogether happenstance — whether you‘re referring to the paper cut or the cliff-jump or what have you. With the characters being who they are, it‘s only a matter of time before Bella bleeds near Jasper, and then the outcome is inevitable. It‘s only a matter of time before Bella finds a way to express her need for adrenaline in a way that nearly kills her, and it‘s pretty good odds that Jacob will be somewhere close to Bella at that time, clouding up Alice‘s visions.

It gets complicated because, as the author, I see the first-person perspective from more than one person‘s perspective. I started writing Bella in the beginning, but there are several voices that are first-person perspective for me while I‘m writing. So I know everything that‘s going on with those people. Sometimes it‘s hard for me to write from Bella‘s perspective only, because Bella can only know certain things. And so much of that story was first-person-perspective Edward for me.

I knew it was going to be a problem if Edward took off. [Laughs] I mean, even though Twilight had not come out yet, I was aware enough at this point that this is not the way you write a romance. You don‘t take the main character away — you don‘t take the guy away. [SH laughs]

But because of who he is, he had to leave — and because of the weakness that he has, he was going to come back. It was his strength that got him away, and it was the weakness that brought him back. It was a defeat, in a way, for him — but, at the same time, it was this triumph he wasn‘t expecting. Because he didn‘t see it going the way it does in the end.

He‘s such a pessimist — oh my gosh, Edward‘s a pessimist. And one of the fun things about Breaking Dawn for me was working through that with him, till he finally becomes an optimist. That‘s one of the biggest changes in Breaking Dawn, that Edward becomes an optimist.

So many things have lined up in his favor that he can no longer deny the fact that some good will happen to him in his life. [Laughs]

And so for me, New Moon was all about what Edward had to do to be able to call himself a man. If he hadn‘t tried to save Bella by leaving, then he would not have been a good person, in his own estimation. He had to at least try.

And it was really hard to write, because I had to live all that. Oh gosh — it was depressing! I was into listening to a lot of Marjorie Fair. [Laughs] But I was able to do some things as a writer that I was really proud of, that I felt were a lot better than what I‘d done in Twilight. I was able to explore some things that felt really real to me — even though I‘d never been in Bella‘s position. It didn‘t feel like sympathy; it was empathy. Like I was really there, like I really was her. And so that was an interesting experience… but it was hard. It does take up the majority of the book, and that was tricky. It‘s gratifying to me that, for some people — a minority— New Moon is their very favorite book.

SH: I have a book like that— Enna Burning—which has been my least popular book all around. But there is a core of people for whom that is their favorite. And it is tremendously gratifying, because that was a difficult book to write for me, too. It‘s a dark book, and I poured so much into it. I‘m really proud of that book. But to find that it spoke to someone else besides me makes me feel not quite so lonely as a writer.

SM: As a writer I don‘t think you always realize how lonely it is to feel like you‘re in this world all by yourself. That‘s why you end up sharing it, because there are some people who will get it.

On Criticism

Every book has its audience.

SM: What surprises me is not that there are people who don‘t get my book — because that seems really obvious and natural — but that there are people who do. And I do think that, as the series went on, the story started to get more specific, and possibilities were getting cut out. As you define something, all the ―might have beens‖ die as you decide things. And so I‘m not surprised that people had problems with wrapping it up, because it became more specific to me as time went on.

Every book has its audience. Sometimes it‘s an audience of one person — sometimes it‘s an audience of twenty. And every book has someone who loves it, and some people who don‘t.

Every one of those books in a bookstore has a reason to be there — some person that it‘s going to touch. But you can‘t expect it to get everybody.

SH: No.

SM: And you can‘t say: ―Well, there‘s something wrong if this book didn‘t mean the same thing to everyone who read it.‖ The book shouldn‟t make sense to some people, because we‘re all different. And thank goodness. How boring would it be if we all felt the same way about every book?

People bring so many of their own expectations to the table that a story can‘t really please everyone.

SH: I really believe that, as writers, we do fifty percent of the work — and then the reader does the other fifty percent of the work — of storytelling. We‘re all bringing experiences and understanding to a book.

When you start with Twilight, you‘ve got one book and one story. There‘s still an infinite number of possibilities of where that story can go. So if you‘ve got, maybe, ten million fans of Twilight, by the time you get to New Moon, you‘re narrowing what can happen, because these characters are making choices, and so maybe you‘ve got seven million possibilities. By the time you get to Eclipse, you‘re down to, say, three million people who are going to be happy with the story. After Breaking Dawn

SM: There are only twenty people who are going to get it. [Laughs] I think it‘s a weird expectation that if a story is told really well, everybody, therefore, will have to appreciate it.

People bring so many of their own expectations to the table that a story can‘t really please everyone.

SH: But is it still hard for you? Do you still have a desire to please everyone?

SM: Of course. I would love to make people happy. It‘s a great thing to hear that your book made someone‘s day brighter. It‘s amazing to think that you‘re doing some good, with a thing that just brings you joy in the first place. It‘s not why I do it, but it‘s a great benefit. It‘s the frosting.

It‘s hard when people who really wanted to like it don‘t. That makes me sad, because I know that there was a story for them, but it‘s just not the one that I could write. I think that sometimes for people who are that invested, it‘s because they‘re storytellers themselves. And maybe they need to cross that line — cross over to the dark side… join us! — and start creating their own stories.

I don‘t question the characters, which is why I‘m able to maintain my voice when I write — because that, to me, is the one thing that‘s rock-solid.

SH: That is an impossible situation, though. Because here you‘ve created these characters in Twilight, and then readers are creating their own versions of those characters. So then you go on and write another book, and what your characters did… isn‘t necessarily what their characters would do. Maybe from their point of view, you‘re manipulating their characters into doing things they wouldn‘t do, even though of course you‘re not.

SM: It is funny…. I mean, it‘s hard because I am very thin-skinned. I don‘t take anything lightly. When I read a criticism, I immediately take it to heart and say: ―Oh my gosh — maybe I should have done that! Oh, I do do this wrong!‖ I question myself very easily. I don‘t question the characters, which is why I‘m able to maintain my voice when I write — because that, to me, is the one thing that‘s rock-solid. It doesn‘t matter what my doubts are — they are who they are.

And that‘s a good thing.

SH: It is. And despite all of the criticism, there are so many more fans than there are people who are angry about the books, but you hear the negative stuff so much louder.

SM: Oh, always loud. You know, it reminds me of the movie Pretty Woman. Whenever that comes on TV, for some reason I can‘t change the channel. [SH laughs] And there‘s the one part where she says: It‘s easier to believe the bad, you know.

SH: Yeah.

SM: That‘s one of the things that I think is a constant struggle: to make the negative voices not as loud as — or at least just equal to — the positive voices. I know a lot of people who feel the same way. It‘s easy to doubt yourself.

Maybe the answer is not to write a sequel. I‘m considering that. You know, write one-shots — just one contained story, which I have a hard time doing. I guess I‘ll just have to end it by killing the characters — because then it‘ll be over, right? [Laughs] But if you kill off your characters — even minor characters — you still sob for everything that they were and could have been.

But if you kill off your characters — even minor characters — you still sob for everything that they were and could have been.

SH: In the book I‘m writing right now, there is a death — a major death. And every time I do a rewrite, as I get near that scene, and I know I have to face it again, my stomach just clenches and I get sick with dread. And as I go through that scene, I‘m sobbing the entire time. It is not easy….

SM: No. When you know in advance that you‘re going to put yourself through that, it gives you some pause. And then you also have to know that it‘s a different story than what people are expecting. That‘s also the trouble with sequels.

SH: The most letters I get from fans is for one book called Princess Academy, and the most requests I get from fans is for a sequel to that book. And then they tell me what happens in the sequel, you know? [SM laughs] And that‘s how I know that I shouldn‘t write it.

SM: Right.

SH: Because they‘ve already told their own story. And that‘s what I want, anyway… because I didn‘t tie everything up completely. I just gave them an idea of where they might go in the future.

On Breaking Dawn

I was aware that it was taking Bella in a new direction that wasn‘t as relatable for a lot of people.

SH: I loved Breaking Dawn. It‘s hard to pick a favorite, but it might be my favorite. It was so the book I wanted, and so what it felt like it needed to be for me. And I have to say I loved the pregnancy and birth stuff, because I love the horror. Your books are romance, but there‘s also this real, wonderful undercurrent of horror that‘s different from any kind of horror I‘ve read. And I love what horror can do: shine a light on what is real. And you make it bigger and more grotesque — just so you can see more clearly how grotesque what really happens is.

SM: I do think that sometimes I put horror in unusual places for horror to exist, and I take it out of places where it might have been easy to have it. You know, that birth scene really was horror for me. We live in a time where having a baby is not much more dangerous than giving blood. I mean, it‘s horrible, but it‘s unlikely that you‘re going to die.

But that‘s something new for this century. You know, there was a time when childbirth was possibly the most terrifying thing you could do in your life, and you were literally looking death in the face when you went ahead with it. And so this was kind of a flashback to a time when that‘s what every woman went through. Not that they got ripped apart, but they had no guarantees about whether they were going to live through it or not.

You know, I recently read — and I don‘t read nonfiction, generally— Becoming Jane Austen. That‘s the one subject that would get me to go out and read nonfiction. And the author‘s conclusion was that one of the reasons Jane Austen might not have married when she did have the opportunity… well, she watched her very dear nieces and friends die in childbirth! And it was like a death sentence: You get married and you will have children. You have children and you will die. [Laughs] I mean, it was a terrifying world.

And Bella‘s pregnancy and childbirth, to me, were a way to kind of explore that concept of what childbirth used to be. That made it very specific for readers who were interested in that, and it did take it away from some of the fans who were expecting something different. I was aware that it was taking Bella in a new direction that wasn‘t as relatable for a lot of people. I knew that it was going to be a problem for some readers.

SH: Yeah.

SM: My agent and my editor and my publisher all said: ―Um, can we tone down the violence here? It‘s making me a little sick.‖ [Laughs] But I was kind of proud of myself. I was thinking: I actually wrote something violent enough to bother anybody? I‟m such a marshmallow. Wow — you go, Stephenie! [SH laughs] And I toned it down for them, and I made it a little bit less gruesome. Although I kept some of the gruesome stuff in, too.

SH: I know you hate spoilers. You don‘t want any leaks.

SM: You know, though, I wonder with this last book… I wonder if it would have been an easier road for readers who have difficulties with Breaking Dawn if they‘d known more in advance. If people had asked me, ―Can vampires have babies with humans?‖ And, instead of saying, ―I can‘t answer questions about those crazy things that might or might not happen‖—

which is what I said because I didn‘t want to make it super-obvious it was going to happen; I mean, that just seems wrong — I could have just said, ―Yeah, they can.‖ Maybe it would have been easier for them if they‘d been expecting it.

My scientific reasoning works for me, but for people who don‘t buy into it, I can only agree.

SH: So you knew, even before Twilight was published, that in your world a vampire and a human would have a baby?

SM: Oh yeah. I‘ve got it all worked out in my head. My scientific reasoning works for me, but for people who don‘t buy into it, I can only agree. It‘s true. Vampires cannot have babies… because vampires aren‘t real. [Laughs] And vampires can‘t have babies with humans, because humans can‘t actually copulate with vampires — because vampires are not real. [SH laughs] It‘s a fantasy.

SH: Right. And yet people believe those characters, and the possibility of those vampires is real enough that they have to say: Wait — those aren‘t the rules.

SM: It‘s flattering in a way, that this is so real to them that they feel like there are things that can‘t happen in this fantasy.

SH: Now I have a nerd-girl question. Does Nessie‘s bite do anything? Did it do anything to Bella, when Nessie bit her?

SM: Nessie is not venomous.

SH: You did say in the book that Nessie wasn‘t venomous. I mean, it‘s just about food.

[Laughs] Extreme nursing. [Laughs] But I guess when Bella did so well with the transition, as the new vampire, I was thinking: I wonder if Nessie‟s bite did that for her.

SM: [Laughs] I hadn‘t even thought of that. No, Bella‘s transition was unique among new vampires, in that she knew what was coming. None of the other Cullens had any warning. It was just, all of a sudden, this overwhelming need to drink blood — just without any kind of readying. You know how sometimes you have to brace yourself for something? Bella was braced — she was ready. And it wasn‘t like it was easier for her than it was for them. She‘d just already made up her mind that that‘s the whole key to everything. She‘s the only person in the entire history of the Twilight universe who chose beforehand to be a ―vegetarian‖ vampire.

SH: I liked that Jasper had a hard time with that. His personal struggle was that it wasn‘t inevitable.

SM: You know, when you‘re really used to giving in to instant gratification, that makes it harder not to. If you‘ve never given in, it‘s easier to keep it that way.

Just to have Bella and Edward really be able to understand each other — that made it worth writing four books.

SH: I remember when you were writing Breaking Dawn, you told me that this story made you happy. What is it about this story that made you happy?

SM: Well, it goes back to what we were talking about before, about Edward. And it‘s an interesting thing to me, how I worry about my characters like they‘re real people. Like how after I wrote Eclipse—even though I knew exactly what was going to happen in Breaking Dawn

until I actually got to the part where Jacob sees Renesmee for the first time, and his life comes together for him, I worried about him all the time.

And Edward, this whole time, has had a lot of happiness — and, yet, he‘s not trusting any of it to last. He‘s feeling like he‘s doomed, and there‘s no abating it — that something bad is going to happen to him because of who he is. And now I could finally watch that change and watch him come to accept happiness — even more than Bella does. Because Bella sees the end coming and sort of loses hope, but he never does.

After he accepts that he can have happiness, he just clings to it. And I really enjoyed that, and I enjoyed writing the end. I had to write all four books to get to those last two pages. Just to have Bella and Edward really be able to understand each other — that made it worth writing four books.

SH: And he really makes the journey — even though vampires, as you‘ve said, are frozen sort of in that moment when they first become vampires. But he changes so much in Breaking Dawn, and so quickly in becoming a father. What was it like to take him through that journey, as well?

SM: You know, all that really changes is his outlook — which, of course, changed everything. But who he is, what he loves, how he does things — it all stays the same. He did get a lot of things that he hadn‘t even let himself think about wanting, though. I mean, getting to have this daughter that he had never envisioned — that he never could have conceived of — was this unbelievable thing for him, you know. And he accepts it pretty quickly. But the bigger wonder for him is Bella being happy. He thought he was going to ruin her life, and he made her happy.

And that really was everything for him.

On Literary Inspirations

SH: So when you were writing, you‘d have a literary classic that helps inspire your books. With Breaking Dawn you said it was A Midsummer Night‟s Dream, and you couldn‘t say the second one.

SM: Merchant of Venice—which I do say in the story. You know… [SH gasps] It‘s the book Alice pulls a page from to leave her message for Bella.

SH: I wondered about that.

SM: And, you know, originally it was Jane Eyre that Alice tore a page from. But Jane Eyre had nothing to do with the story. It just got in there because Jane Eyre was one of my best friends growing up. She was a really big part of my life. [Laughs] That‘s why it was in there, because that book was such a big part of my growing-up experience and the way I view the world.

Because, actually, I do think there‘s a Bella— Jane Eyre relationship. Jane Eyre‘s a stoic.

She does what she thinks is right, and she takes it — and she doesn‘t mouth off about it. You know, in her head, maybe, she suffers, but she never lets that cross her lips. And I do think that there‘s some of that stoicism — not in the same way, but there‘s a little bit of that — in Bella.

The real story that I felt tied to was A Midsummer Night‟s Dream, where, in this lovely fantasy, the heartbreak of people not loving the right people — which happens all the time — is made right in this glittery instant of fairy dust. I love that book — and that‘s the part I love about it. I enjoyed the character of Bottom in the play, but that‘s not what I read it for. I read it for the magic.

That really is sort of where the imprinting idea came from, which existed in Forever Dawn (the original sequel to Twilight). And I introduced it earlier, so that it would be something already explained, and I wouldn‘t have to go into it later. It was about the magic of setting things right — which doesn‘t happen in the real world, which is absolutely fantasy. But if we can‘t have things made right in fantasy, then where do we get them made right?

So here‘s where The Merchant of Venice comes in. The third book of Breaking Dawn

which is a full half of the novel — was a lot longer than I thought it would end up being. And the whole time I had to have tension building to the final confrontation… but I wanted to give the clue that this was not going to be a physical confrontation. This was a mental confrontation — and if one person loses, everybody dies.

SH: Yeah.

SM: There‘s no way to win this one with a physical fight. Everyone‘s going to lose if that happens. So it‘s a mental battle to survive, and it‘s all about figuring out the right way to word something. Figuring out the right proof to introduce at exactly the right time, so that you can force someone into conceding — just trapping them in their own words.

SH: Because in The Merchant of Venice, Portia stayed with her beloved by being clever.

SM: Exactly. And just with her cleverness and by using the right words, she‘s averting bloodshed and murder from legally happening right in front of her and ruining her life.

SH: When The Merchant of Venice came up in the story, I immediately started going through my mind: What‘s the story of The Merchant of Venice? What does it mean to this book?

SM: And in the end of The Merchant of Venice, all the lovers get their happy ending.

That‘s one of the reasons I like it. [Laughs]

Can you tell I like the lighter side of Shakespeare?

SH: The Merchant of Venice and A Midsummer Night‟s Dream—I like that.

SM: Can you tell I like the lighter side of Shakespeare? I mean, I like the tragedies, too, and Romeo and Juliet is probably my favorite. Which is probably very immature of me, but that‘s the one that always gets me, and I think that‘s part of who I am. [Laughs] That‘s why my books are the way they are — because those are the stories that come alive for me.

SH: It works so well in New Moon. I did also identify with New Moon, though, because there‘s something a little Rochestery about Edward for me.

SM: Yeah.

SH: And then Edward leaves — and in Jane Eyre, Jane is the one who leaves.

SM: Yeah.

SH: And she‘s with St. John, but you know Jane and Mr. Rochester need to be together.

And you don‘t know: Are they going to be together? And then there‘s that little bit of the mystical — when she hears him call her name. And she returns to him, and she saves him. And I love that in New Moon, too. I never get tired of it.

SM: I have never thought of it in that context, and there is so much that works with that comparison. I mean, I‘m going to have to think about this some more later. Because, wow—

there is a lot. I have never written a book where I said: ―This one has a Jane Eyre emphasis.‖ But I think you‘re absolutely right.

You know, isn‘t it funny how books influence us? They become a part of who you are. I mean, how much of my childhood that I remember has actually happened to me, and how much of it is the events that were in Anne of Green Gables? You know, I‘m not really sure, because reading was so much of who I was. And those stories were every bit as real — and much more exciting — than the day-to-day boringness that was my life.

But Jane Eyre was this person that I felt like I knew. I think that there‘s a lot of Mr.

Rochester in Edward, and I think there‘s a lot of Jane in Edward. Because he would take himself away from a situation that‘s not right, just like she does! And then she‘s like Bella, coming home at the end. But, my goodness, how close that is. I thank you, Shannon Hale. You have enlightened me.

But, actually, the more you get into writing, I think you realize that there is no new story.

SH: [Laughs] Well, you‘re welcome.

SM: You know, I think… maybe readers who aren‘t writers might look at something like that — using inspiration from other books — as kind of a form of plagiarism. But, actually, the more you get into writing, I think you realize that there is no new story.

SH: Every story has been told, so you‘re just telling it in a new way. One big reason why it‘s so important to be well read when you‘re writing is because when you write, you can dialogue with everything else that‘s ever been written. The more you read, the more you get to converse with all these other great works. And that makes them more exciting.

SM: Right. I really do believe that, you know, there are no new stories — except maybe Scott Westerfeld. [Laughs] He‘s, like, the one person who always makes me think: No one has ever done exactly that before! [Laughs] But, you know, every story has a basis in all the stories of your life.

SH: I think the most common question any writer gets is: Where do you get your ideas from? And that‘s the impossible question to answer, because, like you said, they come from…

SM: A million places.

SH: Everything: everything you experienced or imagined or thought or smelled or read or…

SM: A person you walked by in the airport once that just — you know, you saw a look in their eye, and you started spinning a story about what was going on in that person‘s head.

SH: And, of course, a story isn‘t just one idea. The more you write, the more you‘re drawing on a million different pieces of things. That‘s why it takes so long to write a story, because I start out with an idea… but the more I write, I realize it‘s just the kernel — because I‘m adding more and more depth and intrigue. And along with the characters, it builds to a whole universe.

SM: It really does. I was trying to describe this recently, about how you have this universe of possibilities. And every time you pick one thing for your story — like Bella is brunette — all her blond and redheaded possibilities disappear. And then, when you pick the kind of car somebody drives, there are a million other vehicles, makes, and models that suddenly die.

And as you narrow it down, you‘re just taking pieces of it and destroying whole worlds that could have been. It‘s a very interesting process.

SH: I‘ve got chills.

On Eclipse

SH: So when you were writing Eclipse, Twilight hadn‘t come out yet.

SM: Twilight was not yet in stores. I had finished the rough draft of Eclipse. I still had a lot of editing to do, but it stayed pretty much in its present form.

SH: Was Twilight successful immediately?

SM: Yes — more so than I thought it would be. I mean, nothing, obviously, to what‘s going on right now. But when I was out on tour, it did, for one week, hop onto the New York Times list — which, for me, was like the epitome of everything. It was like: For the rest of my life, I get to say I‟m a New York Times bestselling novelist.

SH: [Laughs] Right.

SM: So, for that one week, it felt like that was it — that was all I ever needed. [Laughs] So it started out really well. Booksellers were really great about getting the word out and hand selling it — which is awesome. Before New Moon came out, I had a couple of events with like a hundred people — and they were all excited and ready for what was coming next. That was really, really gratifying.

I had also started to get that people-didn‘t-like-Jacob vibe, which really took me by surprise.

SH: So at what point did you have to start balancing the success and the pressures from the outside while you were still writing?

SM: I think the first real pressure was with New Moon, when the advance reading copies came out. New Moon had those two spoilers. Edward leaves, Jacob‘s a werewolf. Once you know that, most of the suspense is gone from the book. Whether you figure it out or not, it‘s still huge. So those two things ruin any possibility of suspense in the story, pretty much. Then a review written by someone who had an advance reading copy was put online and it gave away every plot point of the whole book six months before the book came out.

That was the first time, I think, my publisher started to realize the power of the Internet with this particular series. Because it just started this huge outpouring of letters and people were so upset. Has this really happened? Why did this person tell us this? Can we read the book now?

Is it out? What‘s going on?

So I felt pressure then — but the book was already written. And then, with Eclipse, it started to feel like a lot of people had their specific ideas about what should happen. That was the first time I was really conscious that people were writing the story differently in their heads. I had also started to get that people-didn‘t-like-Jacob vibe, which really took me by surprise. I think it‘s because they weren‘t hearing his first-person the way I was. So then they got to, later.

SH: I don‘t know if you felt this way… but I never thought I would write from the point of view of a boy. Maybe because I read a lot of books where men wrote from a woman‘s point of view, and I found them unrealistic characters.

SM: Yes, yes!

SH: Especially, you know, books written in the last century. But I was like: That is such crap! A woman wouldn‘t think that — wouldn‘t do that — and it bothered me. So I thought I would never write from the point of view of a boy.

But then I met a character — almost exactly the same way you did. With Goose Girl there was a minor character named Razo. And then the book after that, Enna Burning, he was in it again — a minor character. And so by the time I got to the third book in the series, and I started to write from his point of view, I‘d already known him for two books. And I was thinking: I‟m not writing this from the point of view of a boy; I‟m just writing this person that I know. And the gender wasn‘t an issue. Was it sort of like that with Jacob?

SM: Yeah. You know, I felt a little presumptuous when I started working on writing Twilight from Edward‘s perspective, because I‘m not a boy. But Edward was so much a part of the story, and such a strong voice, that it didn‘t seem to matter. So I‘d kinda gotten that out of my system by the time I decided that I needed to write from Jacob‘s point of view. But, again — I wasn‘t writing a boy, I was writing Jacob. It was not like a universal male thing.

I do think that I have a sense of boys, because I have three brothers; I have three sons; I have a husband and my father and my father-in-law. I‘ve seen a lot of teenage boys in action, and they‘re actually very fascinating, hilarious, and heartbreaking creatures. I mean, they can beat the crap out of each other, and then be laughing with their arms around each other with black eyes five minutes later. I do think that I‘ve observed enough to be able to get the outside right, and that I knew Jacob enough that I could get the inside right.

Either one could have been the one that was wrong for her, and either one could have been the one that was right.

SH: I love the Jacob chapters in Breaking Dawn. But I need to go back to Eclipse.

You‘ve talked about Wuthering Heights influencing Eclipse.

SM: Yeah. You know, and that‘s one of the ones that‘s interesting to me, because Wuthering Heights is not a book that I like. There are characters in it that fascinate me, but, as a whole, I don‘t enjoy reading that book. I enjoy reading the very end of it, and I enjoy reading a couple pieces in the middle, but most of the time I just find it really depressing. When Edward speaks about it, he has my opinion being spoken through him: It‘s a hate story — it‘s not a love story.

The pull between Edgar and Heathcliff is strong — and, you know, Cathy makes the wrong choice. Both of them had something to offer, and she chose the part that didn‘t matter.

Even though I don‘t like to read Wuthering Heights, I think about that part a lot. It‘s one of those things that stays with you.

You could look at Edward and Jacob from one perspective and say: Okay, this one is Heathcliff and this one is Edgar. And someone else might say: No, wait a second. Because of this reason and that reason, that one is Heathcliff and the other one is Edgar. And I thought that was great, because either one could have been the one that was wrong for her, and either one could have been the one that was right. I like that confusion, because that‘s how life is.

SH: And when we‘re reading Wuthering Heights, we‘re reading it from an outsider‘s perspective. From the future looking back. So, as a reader, we know who she should choose. And we see her choose the wrong one, and that‘s why it‘s a tragedy. But with Eclipse we don‘t know who she will, or maybe even should, choose.

SM: Well, in Wuthering Heights we see who Cathy should choose. But we also see the person that she should choose is a horrible person.

SH: [Laughs] Right.

SM: And so, maybe, she should choose the nice guy, but, you know, Heathcliff was who she loved. But, at the same time, was he really healthy for her? What would have happened to them if they had gone off together?

And when I write stories, they‘re very specific — it‘s about this one situation, and one person who‘s not like anybody else in the world. So that person‘s decisions and choices are not a model for anyone else.

SH: Now, this reminds me of something that I‘m really interested in. We‘re talking about who she should or shouldn‘t choose. I think sometimes readers assign a moral to a story, and think that, from the outside, we‘re writing the story in order to teach people how to live. [SM laughs] But I can‘t think about a story‘s moral when I‘m writing — I can only think about whether this story is interesting to me.

SM: And when I write stories, they‘re very specific — it‘s about this one situation, and one person who‘s not like anybody else in the world. So that person‘s decisions and choices are not a model for anyone else. And it bothers me when people say: Well, this story is preaching this, or the moral is this. Because it‘s just a story. It‘s about an interesting circumstance and how it resolves. It‘s not intended to mean anything for anybody else‘s life.

SH: I do think there are some writers out there who are trying to teach something through their stories. And I‘ve read moralizing books that just don‘t work.

SM: Well, you have to be really talented to make it work. You know, C. S. Lewis does it well. I love his books, and he is very much out to put a message into his stories. But he‘s so good that he gets away with it.

SH: I think it‘s really important as readers to expand our understanding of the world, to get really close to characters that are different from us — and watch them make mistakes, or make good choices, and then think: Would I do it that way?

SM: Sometimes people tell me: ―So girls are coming away from your books with this fillin-the-blank impression.‖ Maybe something like: ―You should hold out for the perfect gentleman.‖ In which case I could say, ―Well, that‘s a positive message: You should not let people treat you badly. If you‘re dating somebody who doesn‘t put your well-being first, if they‘re being mean or cruel to you — get away from that.‖ And that‘s a great message: If you‘re with a mean, nasty boyfriend, run away right now. [Laughs]

SH: Right.

SM: But that‘s not the message of the book. Just because Edward‘s a gentleman, and he cares about Bella more than himself — and maybe that‘s something that you would wish for in a romance — it doesn‘t mean that that‘s a message I was trying to write.

SH: On the flip side, if someone comes away thinking that the moral of the story of New Moon is that there‘s only one person who‘s right for you in the whole world, and if they leave you, then life is not worth living…

SM: Exactly! Some things you could take away from books could be turned into a positive thing in your life, but you could also make them into something negative, and that would be horrible. So I think it‘s easier just to look at the books as: This is a fictional account — I wasn‘t trying to teach anyone anything — I just wanted to entertain myself. And I did. I was really entertained. [Laughs]

When I read about someone like Jane Eyre, I say: ―I want to be stronger. I want to know myself so well, and to know right and wrong so well, that I can walk away with nothing.‖

SH: I‘m always trying to figure out where the line is with author responsibility. What we write and then send out there is going to affect people‘s lives. But I have absolutely no control about how people will interpret what I write. If readers need to find a moral, or a lesson, in it, they teach it to themselves. And I don‘t think I can control what it is that the readers teach themselves. Do you think that reading does more for you than just provide entertainment?

SM: It does a lot for me — but I don‘t hold the writer responsible for what I get out of it.

When I read about someone like Jane Eyre, I say: ―I want to be stronger. I want to know myself so well, and to know right and wrong so well, that I can walk away with nothing.‖ I just loved her moral sense. But I don‘t think that Charlotte Brontë meant for me to use that as a guide to life. If you can find something inspiring in characters, that‘s awesome, but that‘s not their primary purpose.

SH: And it can‘t be, or it kills the story. The primary purpose has to be telling the story.

SM: It has to be entertainment.

On Finding Story Ideas

When you spend time around people, you know, there are so many stories that it just can make you crazy when you want to write them all down.

SH: People often ask me — and I‘m sure you get this, too: How do you come up with so many ideas? Once you start writing, the ideas just keep multiplying.

SM: Yeah. I hate to travel, but I see so many stories in airports. We were in, I think, Chicago, waiting for a flight, and this whole story just played out right in front of us. There was a man and a woman, and she kept leaning toward him and touching him, and he was always shifting away from her just a little bit, and not meeting her eye. And it was so clear, the inequality in their feelings, and where I imagined their future was heading, I felt I could just run with it. When you spend time around people, you know, there are so many stories that it just can make you crazy when you want to write them all down.

SH: Yeah, there‘s never a problem with finding ideas; it‘s just finding the time to write it, and the words to tell it.

SM: For me, it‘s time. I don‘t usually experience the kind of writer‘s block that people talk about. My kind of writer‘s block is when I know what needs to happen, and I just have a stumbling block — some transition that I can‘t get past.

The longest part of writing Breaking Dawn was writing right after all the action sequences. Bella becoming a vampire — that was very easy — but after that section I had to skip four months ahead. And that transition took me more time than any other section of the book. It‘s only half a chapter long — it‘s not very many words — and the amount of time per word put into that section is probably ten times what it was in any other part of the book.

There are just some things that are not exciting, but I like to write minute by minute. And when I have to write, ―And then three months passed,‖ it kills me.

SH: [Laughs] I don‘t believe in writer‘s block. I sort of embrace it, which feels good.

And it doesn‘t mean that writing isn‘t hard, and sometimes I can‘t come up with the right way to do it. The way I get over it is by allowing myself to write really badly, and then I rewrite a lot.

The first draft for me is the worst. I hate writing first drafts — it‘s so painful for me — but the story time for me comes in the rewrite. I already have some clay there to work with, and then I rewrite.

But your first drafts, I think, are different for you.

SM: I love writing first drafts. I don‘t think about what I‘m doing. It‘s hard for me to go back and reshape it. I can see it needs help, so I have more trouble — maybe because it doesn‘t feel like clay anymore. It‘s more like marble — I have to chip it off.

SH: Then you know what we need to do? [Laughs] You need to write first drafts, and then I‘ll rewrite them. And then we‘ll be happy.

SM: We‘ll combine forces.

SH: But then you‘ll see the book that I‘ve turned it into, and you‘ll be like: What?!

SM: Well, then you‘ll get the rough draft and think: I don‟t want to do anything with this!


If I don‘t care about the character, I can‘t finish it.

SH: Would you ever collaborate with another writer? Do you think you could do that?

SM: I don‘t know if I could. You know, sometimes I wonder, because it looks like a whole lot of fun. I really enjoy other writers, and their ideas and their processes. It‘s fascinating.

Maybe if it were something where we were switching off voices… But I just don‘t think I could write another person‘s character, because I have to really care to be able to write. If I don‘t care about the character, I can‘t finish it. Or if, for some reason, the character has become an unhappy place for me, then I just can‘t go there.

I had one draft of about five chapters of a story that really was human — no fantasy, which is always a drawback for me — and then something happened in my family that made it a very painful place to be. It wasn‘t something I had seen coming. I didn‘t think it would ever have any relevance in my life that way. And it became too painful a place to work.

So I have to be in just exactly the right place to be able to write. With someone else‘s character… I just don‘t think I could care deeply enough about them to put out the effort that it takes to write a story.

On Celebrity and Success

SH: The person who you are naturally — when you‘re at home with your family, and you‘re working — is going to be different than the person signing books and greeting fans. How do you balance those two personas? Have you created two different personalities?

SM: I had to. The person who I am at home, with my family, is shy, not comfortable around strangers, kind of a homebody. And so to be able to speak to large groups — to be able to meet a bunch of strangers, which is hard for me; to be able to travel outside of my comfort zone — I had to get stronger. I had to do things that weren‘t fun for me and just suck it up, you know. [Laughs] Because the real me couldn‘t even imagine having to do that, so somebody else had to do it. [Laughs]

SH: Is it exhausting to live that public persona?

SM: It is. It‘s funny…. Just recently — I‘ve got some friends who are friendly with some fans, and they had a party, and I was invited to it. And they‘re like: ―It‘s just going to be really mellow. Don‘t worry about it — you know, it‘s just for fun.‖ But I knew I would have to go and be Stephenie Meyer. I couldn‘t just be Stephenie. And I‘d just gotten off the tour, and I just couldn‘t face it right then. I needed to just stay home and be me.

And, in fact, I felt so much pressure not to be a letdown that, on my last tour, I brought along a rock star.

SH: I‘ve found it‘s hard for some people to understand that. For me, there‘s nothing as exhausting as doing a book signing or a school presentation or something. And I think part of it is that I don‘t think I am interesting enough to make it worthwhile for anybody to hear me talk—

or to stand in line to meet me. And so I‘m pouring my energy out onto these people, and trying to give them as much as I can. I mean, I‘m sure you‘ve had this, too — more than I have — where people will fly in from several states away just to meet you for those few seconds in line. And I think: How on earth could I make this worth their time?

SM: Exactly. And, in fact, I felt so much pressure not to be a letdown that, on my last tour, I brought along a rock star. And I felt so much better. [Laughs] Justin Furstenfeld from Blue October came and played some of the music that inspired my writing, and we interviewed each other onstage. I enjoyed what he did so much that I thought: You know what? These kids are getting an amazing show. This is special — this is something that is worth them coming out for. If I ever tour again, I will not leave the house without a rock star by my side. [Laughs] That is the new rule. Or…

SH: A juggling act — a magician.

SM: A magician would be good! Because, well, honestly, in person, there‘s nothing really that great either of us can do. We write books, so our big finale is sitting in front of a little computer, in a little room. And it‘s not something exciting to watch. It‘s the story that‘s the exciting part, and anybody can get that at the bookstore.

I‘ve had the experience where I got to meet one of my personal idols, just because a friend pulled some strings and I got backstage at a concert. I lived off that for months. So I try and remember that, and think: You know what? It means something to them, even though I can‟t understand why it would be anything special.

SH: You know, it is true. I really can be such a fangirl. And I get so excited when I meet with writers….

SM: On the last tour I got to go out to lunch with Terry Brooks. The first real book I ever read was The Sword of Shannara. I was sitting next to this man who has so much experience—

and so many years of doing this — and I‘m thinking: This book opened the entire world of reading to me. The gift that this man has given me, unconsciously, is nothing I could ever, ever repay. It was just this really amazing experience.

On Balancing Writing and Life

SH: It took me a long time to admit that I was a writer. I wouldn‘t give myself permission to take the time — or to take it seriously — for a long, long time. But you started off in a different way. You already had three kids.

SM: I did not call myself an author without making some kind of snide comment for at least two years after the book was sold.

SH: Two years?

SM: I had this really strong sense of paranoia — like it wasn‘t real, that the whole deal was a practical joke — for a very long time. Because the contract negotiation took a good nine months, so for all of that time someone could have been stringing me along. It wasn‘t until the check came — and didn‘t bounce — that I really started to believe it.

SH: Have people changed toward you — family, friends, and acquaintances?

SM: You know, because when I started writing I had a bunch of little babies, we‘ve moved a couple times. And you lose track of people, anyway, so I haven‘t held on to many of my friends from before I started writing, just because of location.

It‘s the same way with my college roommates. We‘re lucky if we get a phone call in once a year anymore. Then I‘ve gotten enormously busy — I‘ve changed — I don‘t have as much time for social things. And I do think that I probably lost some friends just out of sheer neglect.

Because I wasn‘t going to neglect my kids.

And that summer with Twilight, I couldn‘t do anything social. Why would I spend my time away from Forks when I could be there?

SH: Yeah.

SM: And that summer with Twilight, I couldn‘t do anything social. Why would I spend my time away from Forks when I could be there? I‘m getting better at balancing it, and I have some really great friends now, which is nice. I have a lot of extended family, too, and they‘ve all been very cool and supportive. But because there are so many of them, we haven‘t been able to spend a lot of time together. I have seventy-five first cousins on one side of my family, so it‘s not like we can get together and party very often. Most of us have several kids. My dad had a stepmom with five kids; his dad had seven…. It‘s just a really big family. [Laughs] A big warm family, and nobody‘s been uncool about it. It‘s all been very nice.

SH: I think family is good…. They knew you as an obnoxious young person. [Laughs]

SM: Very obnoxious. Yeah, I‘m just Stephenie to them.

SH: I don‘t think any success I‘ve had has gotten to my head, because I can‘t really take it seriously, or absorb it, anyway. But if I ever got close, I think my family would be there to tear me back down. [SM laughs] Which is what family‘s for.

SM: Yeah, my husband‘s really good at keeping me humble, you know? Because he‘s such a math person. If something‘s not quantifiable — if it doesn‘t fit into an equation — it can‘t possibly be important. And so, to him, books are like: Oh, you know… isn‟t that nice? Little fairy stories. To me, books are the whole world, and it‘s such a different viewpoint. So that helps. And then, like you, I don‘t trust this to last for a second.

SH: Yeah.

SM: And when negative things happen with my career, I kind of expect them — more than I expect the positive. It‘s almost like: Yes, this is what I thought was going to happen! I saw this one coming! Because I am a pessimist — raised in a long tradition of fine pessimists [SH laughs] who have never expected anything good for decades. So I come by it naturally. [Laughs]

So with every book that comes out, I think: Oh, this is it. This is the last time anybody‟s going to want to publish me. And maybe it‘s healthier than thinking: I am the best! I‟m so amazing! I don‘t think that‘s a healthy way to be. It‘d probably be nice to be somewhere in the middle, but… [Laughs]

SH: In some ways, I would love to have that armor — the wonderful author‘s ego — that I am right, and I know what I‘m doing, and I‘m brilliant.

SM: Yeah, that might be nice.

I think it‘s really good for my kids to see that I have my own life outside of them — that I‘m a real person.

SH: So, we‘re both mothers. And I think that mothers are famously guilt-ridden creatures.

[SM laughs] I mean, we never succeed — we‘re always failing at something. So have you had to deal with guilt of, you know, taking the time — allowing yourself to take the time to be a writer, and to pursue this?

SM: Occasionally. It doesn‘t bother me that often. I think it‘s because my kids are really, really great. They‘re good and they‘re happy. I‘ve seen kids who are treated like the center of the universe, and I don‘t think that‘s entirely healthy. I think it‘s really good for my kids to see that I have my own life outside of them — that I‘m a real person. I think that‘s going to help them when they grow up and have children — to realize that they‘re still who they are.

And then I am pretty careful about when I write. Now it‘s mostly when they‘re in school.

When they were little, though, I never shut myself away in an office — I‘d always written in the middle of their madness — so I‘d be there, and I could get whatever they needed. They know I‘m listening. And they‘re also pretty good about saying: ―Okay, Mommy‘s writing right now.

Unless I‘m bleeding, I‘m not going to bug her.‖

And I also write at night. When they come home from school, we do homework and I hear about their day and I make them snacks. The nice thing about writing is, you can do it on your own schedule. But you do lose sleep. You know, I feel like I haven‘t slept eight hours in ten years.

If you start getting a little bit of dialogue in your head, you‘re doomed — you‘ll never get to sleep.

SH: It‘s like having a newborn, writing a book, isn‘t it?

SM: It is. Well, because you lie there in bed — and, oh, heaven help you if you start thinking about plotline. If you start getting a little bit of dialogue in your head, you‘re doomed—

you‘ll never get to sleep.

SH: It is so true. I can sleep pretty well at the beginning of the night. If, for whatever reason, I wake up — or my son comes in and wakes me up anytime between the hours of two and five — and if my mind, for one second, goes back to the book I‘m writing right now, I‘m done for the rest of the night. I can‘t go back to sleep, because my mind starts working over and over it.

I‘ve had to train my brain to do that, on purpose, so that I‘m always writing, even when I‘m not.

SM: You at least put things in the back of your head, so that you‘re solving the problems.

SH: Exactly — so when I sit down to write it‘s more productive, because I‘ve been working over it in my brain. But, like you say, when you do that in the middle of the night, you‘re doomed.

SM: Well, one of my problems right now is that I have not committed to a project at this point in time, and I‘m waiting to be done with the publicity. And that‘s never really going to happen, so I need to just commit to one. I have about fourteen different books, and every night it‘s a new one. And I‘m coming up with solutions for this one point that really bothered me in one story. I thought maybe I couldn‘t write it because of this one point. But then I‘ll wake up at four o‘clock in the morning with a perfect solution, and then I can‘t go back to sleep.

SH: I have found if I just write it down, then my mind can stop working over it.

SM: Exactly.

On Reading and Writing for Young Adults

SH: So far, all of your stories have something of the fantastic in them. You don‘t read only fantasy, though.

SM: Oh, I love mainstream fiction, and there are a lot of books that I really love that are without absolutely any fantasy elements. But, for me, the fantasy ones are for writing. There‘s an extra amount of happiness, that extra oomph, in getting to make your own world at the same time that you‘re writing it. I like that part…. Megalomania… You know, having control over an entire world? [Laughs]

SH: That‘s funny. Like we were talking about earlier, when you‘re a writer there‘s so much that can happen to ego, both good and bad and everything in between. But young-adult authors tend to be pretty down-to-earth, don‘t you think?

SM: Well, I think writing YA keeps you humble. Because everybody says to you: ―Oh… you write for children. Isn‘t that nice?‖ It can be so patronizing sometimes, and, absolutely, it keeps you humble. It makes it so you can‘t possibly become the ―I am an author‖ author. There‘s no way to do that when you write for children. [Laughs]

And one of the little ―icing things‖ of this career is to have these kids come up to tell me that this is the first book they‘ve ever read for pleasure.

SH: I think there‘s also an element of: It isn‟t all just about me. We‘ve both written adult books. I think, when you‘re in the adult market, it‘s all about how many books you sell and what awards you get. But when you‘re writing in the children‘s market, it‘s about the children, too.

And you‘re part of this team — with librarians and booksellers and parents and teachers — and you‘re promoting literacy and some good stuff beyond just: I‟m writing a book, and now pay me for it. So I think people tend to be more even-tempered and more balanced in the children‘s world.

SM: Because I didn‘t set out to write for children, I would never have thought that my books would promote literacy. Someone would have to be a real reader to ever pick one of these up, just because they‘ve run out of everything else. [Laughs]

And one of the little ―icing things‖ of this career is to have these kids come up to tell me that this is the first book they‘ve ever read for pleasure, and that they‘ve moved on. Now they‘ve read this other one, and they‘ve read that one, and now they‘re so excited about some other book they‘ve found. And to have written the first book that got them excited to be a reader — oh, that‘s an amazing gift.

I wish I could give everybody that gift — to find the book that does it for you.

SH: It is. The best compliment that I ever get is not that my books are their favorite, but that mine was the first that made them fall in love with reading.

SM: And now they‘ve gone on. You know, I had a great childhood, and one thing that made my childhood so special was that because I loved to read, I lived a thousand adventures—

and I was a thousand heroines, and I fell in love a thousand times. And now, to open up those worlds for somebody else… I know how great it is, and I wish I could give everybody that gift—

to find the book that does it for you.

I did an interview for The Host once, and the camera guy who was setting everything up said: ―So this book is about aliens?‖ I said: ―Yeah, kind of.‖ And he said, ―Well, you know, I think I‘ve read three books in my life. I hate reading, ever since school — it was such a torture.‖

And I just thought: How sad! There‟s some book out there that‟s perfectly tailored for him, and he doesn‟t know.

SH: Right.

SM: But he‘s not going to pick it up, because he had a bad experience. I really feel like one of the important things you can do for kids in school is not just give them the classics that teach them about excellent form and really great writing style, but also throw in a couple of fun things that teach them that reading can be this amazing adventure. Let them love some story, so at least they know not all books are ―hard‖ or ―difficult,‖ but that they can just be fun.

SH: I agree so passionately about that. And I think some of the key is to have a lot of variety. Because not every genre, or every storytelling style, is going to be right for everyone.

SM: Some people are going to latch on to Shakespeare, and they‘re going to be like: [gasps] ―The insights!‖ And then some people are going to need an action story with car chases and gunfights — they‘re going to need that to get them started.

SH: Every student should have a chance to find at least one book they fall in love with.

Then they‘ll be more likely to go on and keep reading for life.

SM: Exactly. When I was in school I had some really great teachers. And lucky for me, I had already discovered books that I really liked. The classics came easily to me — I read them early, and so it was familiar ground: Oh, good. I‟m doing Jane Austen again. Whoo! But a lot of kids come into it and they‘re hit in the face with a great big difficult-to-understand text — if they don‘t have the background to appreciate the experience, it just sours them on the whole thing.

And it‘s sad.

SH: I meet so many adults who stopped reading for years. And they tell me that a friend pressed them to read a book, and more often than not it was Twilight… and then they find that they do like to read, after all, and they go on to read other books.

So, Stephenie Meyer, thank you. For changing the world — making it a better place — and reminding so many people that we love to read.

SM: I do what I can. [Both laugh]

Vampires, the central supernatural creatures of the Twilight Saga, have existed in myths and local lore for centuries. While the Saga‘s vampires share certain similarities with the vampires of legend, they have many more unique characteristics and supernatural abilities that are specific to the world of Twilight.


In the Twilight universe all vampires were originally human. As vampires, they retain a close physical resemblance to their human form, the only reliably noticeable differences being a universal pallor of skin, a change in eye color, and heightened beauty.


In direct sunlight, the disparity between human and vampire becomes more obvious. The cellular membrane of the vampire is not as soft or permeable as in a human cell; it has crystalline properties that cause the surface of vampire skin to react prismatically, giving the vampire a glitter-like shimmer in sunlight.




— Bella (Twilight, Chapter 13)


The common factor of beauty among vampires is mostly due to this crystalline skin. The perfect smoothness, gloss, and even color of the skin give the illusion of a flawless face. The skin reacts differently to light, creating an angular effect that heightens the perception of beauty.

Additionally, the stonelike firmness of the vampire body creates a look similar to muscle, making any size human appear more fit as a vampire. Like humans, vampires are drawn to beauty. When choosing a human for the transformation process, vampires are as likely as humans to be motivated by a beautiful face and body.


Pale vampire skin is a product of vampire venom‘s transformative process. The venom leeches all pigment from the skin as it changes the human skin into the more indestructible vampire form. Regardless of original ethnicity, a vampire‘s skin will be exceptionally pale. The hue varies slightly, with darker-skinned humans having a barely discernible olive tone to their vampire skin, but the light shade remains the same. All forms of skin pigmentation — freckles, moles, birthmarks, age marks, scars, and tattoos — disappear during the transformation.


While all vampires have similarly pale skin, they can have a certain variety of eye colors.

Vampires who haven‘t fed for a few weeks will have solidly black irises. Recently fed vampires will have deep red eyes if they drank human blood, and medium gold — colored irises if they drank animal blood. Vampires who have been newly transformed will have very bright red irises, regardless of diet. It is possible to disguise this feature with colored contact lenses, but the lubricant in vampire eyes breaks the contacts down quickly. One pair will last only a few hours.

Vampires also universally exhibit dark circles under their eyes. These circles, like the changing irises, denote thirst in a vampire. They appear darker and more obvious when the vampire has not recently fed.

―While vampires are frightening and deadly, they are also alluring. They can be beautiful; they can be sophisticated; they have qualities that we actually aspire to: eternal youth, strength, and intelligence. The dual side to vampires makes them hard to resist.‖ —Stephenie TEETH:

Vampire teeth appear the same as human teeth; the canines are not longer or more pointed than human canines. However, vampire teeth are unbreakable, razor sharp on their edges, and strong enough to cut through almost any substance, including vampire skin.


Less noticeable than these physical features is the vampire‘s tendency toward stillness.

Unlike humans, who grow uncomfortable after holding one physical position for a time, vampires are most comfortable when perfectly motionless. A common vampire reaction to stress is a statue-like immobility.

Vampires breathe reflexively, as do humans, but they have no need for oxygen. They are able to consciously stop breathing for an indefinite period, but they find the sensation uncomfortable. Vampires rely on their sense of smell above other senses, similar to many animal predators. The lack of smell is what causes the discomfort from not breathing.


Some very old vampires are visibly different from others because of this stillness. If a vampire remains unmoving often enough over thousands of years, dust actually begins to petrify in response to the venom-like liquids that lubricate his eyes and skin. Eventually, a vampire‘s skin begins to appear thin and translucent, like the skin of an onion — though the strength of the skin is not compromised. A milky film covers the eyes, making the irises appear pink in color.

Again, the vampire‘s eyesight is not compromised.


Internally, the vampire‘s system contains many venom-based fluids that resemble, and in some cases perform the same function as, the human fluids that were replaced. Only the saliva-like liquid in the vampire‘s mouth is venomous. A fluid similar to this venom works as a lubricant between the hard cells of the skin, making movement possible. Another lubricates the vampire‘s eyes so they can move easily in their sockets. However, vampires do not produce tears, as tears exist to protect the eye from damage by small foreign objects, and those objects would not be able to harm a vampire‘s eye. Throughout the body, this pattern is repeated, with venom-like fluids performing the functions that are still necessary to the vampire. Most notably absent is the circulatory system.

Vampires are frozen in the state at which they are transformed.


Vampires are frozen in the state at which they are transformed. They do not grow older, taller, or wider, or experience any other physical change, including unconsciousness (vampires never sleep). Their fingernails and hair do not grow. Their hair does not change color.


A vampire‘s physical and mental abilities far exceed those of a human being. Vampires can run in excess of a hundred miles per hour. They are able to lift objects hundreds of times their own weight. Their senses are similarly boosted, giving them the ability to see, hear, and smell things imperceptible to humans. Their skin is harder than granite, rendering their bodies nearly indestructible. Their minds work many times faster than humans‘ are capable of, and all vampires have perfect recall.


Vampires do not age from the moment their transformation is complete. Vampires have no natural life cycle; they exist in this progressionless status indefinitely. This is a conditional form of immortality, as they can be permanently destroyed by fire. However, their speed and strength make it necessary to incapacitate them before burning them. Only another supernatural creature has the ability to incapacitate a vampire, by tearing her limbs from her body (thus vampires are in no danger from human beings). A vampire who is incapacitated but left unburned has the ability to reconstitute herself.

One facet of the absence of aging is that vampires do not develop emotionally or mentally past the age at which they are transformed. A transformed child would remain childlike forever, unable to mature in any aspect.


Vampires do not have a circulatory system. Their bodies are harder than human bodies, but their cells are selectively porous. They receive nutrition only from blood, which, once drunk, is absorbed throughout the body. Blood satiates their thirst and makes them physically stronger, but it is not necessary for life. Vampires cannot starve to death; they only get progressively weaker and thirstier as time goes on. They are not able to digest solid food. If a vampire swallows a solid as a subterfuge, that substance will sit in his stomach until he forces it back out through his mouth.

Human blood is the most appealing to vampires — and hardest to resist. However, they can receive the same nutritional strength from animal blood. Vampires do not need to feed as often as humans do; drinking the blood of one human is enough to satiate a mature vampire for a week or two.


Most vampires find their key personality characteristics intensified by the vampire transformation in the same way their physical abilities are strengthened, but relatively few have abilities that can be classified as supernatural. More common would be a human with a love of learning becoming a vampire with an insatiable scholarly curiosity, or a human with a deep value for human life becoming a vampire with the strength to avoid human blood.

But a few vampires do develop additional abilities that go beyond the natural. These extra abilities are due to psychic gifts in the original human that are intensified in the resulting vampire. For example, a human who was very sensitive to other people‘s moods might develop the vampire ability to read thoughts or influence emotions. A human who had some limited precognition might develop into a vampire with a strong ability to see the future. A human with a good instinct for hunting might become a powerful vampire tracker.

The proportion of supernaturally talented vampires to ―normal‖ vampires is greater than the proportion of psychically gifted humans to ―normal‖ humans. This is due to the same factor of temperament that results in more beautiful humans being selected to become vampires.

Vampires are also drawn to gifted humans when they look to create companions. Some vampires actively seek out the gifted in the hope of utilizing that extra ability in their coven.

―I‘ve always loved superheroes, so the vampires I created actually have a lot more in common with superheroes than with horror-genre vampires.‖ —Stephenie


A newborn vampire — defined as any vampire who is less than one year from his date of transformation — is different from a more mature vampire in behavior and appearance. The newborn is plagued by an unrelenting thirst and will feed as often as possible. The thirst is so maddening in the first year that most newborns are more animalistic and wild than their older counterparts.

They are marked as physically different by their vibrantly crimson irises, though in other ways they look the same as mature vampires. Their behavior is more diverse than their appearance. As they age, their behavior generally becomes more rational and constant.


The transformation from human to vampire begins with a vampire bite. Once the venom coating the vampire‘s teeth enters the bloodstream of a human, it moves through the human‘s body, changing each cell as it passes. The spread of the venom is swift, but the reconstruction of the cells takes time. This process is excruciatingly painful, comparable to the feeling of being burned alive. The process lasts for roughly two to three days, depending on how much venom is present in the circulatory system and how close to the heart it entered. There is no way to circumvent the burning with painkillers; the most narcotics can do is immobilize the body.

One benefit to the human is that vampire venom is capable of repairing all kinds of damage to the body. A human who had sustained a crippling injury would be made whole again as a vampire. Venom does have limits, though; it could not, for example, regrow a lost limb.

Only vampires with a great deal of self-control are able to remain focused enough to bite a human and then let him live long enough for the venom to effect the change.

The transformation is difficult from the vampire perspective as well. Even mature vampires have trouble resisting flowing human blood. The scent affects them as it does sharks; they can go into a feeding frenzy. For this reason, vampires tend to not hunt in packs. During the irrational frenzy, members of a coven are likely to turn on one another in competition for the blood. The taste of human blood makes it even harder for the vampire to resist. It is nearly impossible for a vampire to not drain the human — thus killing him or her — once the vampire has tasted blood. Only vampires with a great deal of self-control are able to remain focused enough to bite a human and then let him live long enough for the venom to effect the change.


There is another factor that can complicate this process for the vampire. The smell of each human is different, and certain humans can smell more appetizing than is usual to vampires.

The more appealing any human‘s scent (and taste) is to a vampire, the more difficult it will be for that vampire to bite the human and still leave him alive.

Infrequently, a specific human will smell nearly irresistible to a specific vampire. That human is known as a ―singer‖ among vampires, because his or her blood ―sings‖ for the vampire in question. Singers are individual phenomena; a person whose blood sings for one vampire will not have the same effect on all vampires. While there are some humans whose scents are more appealing to vampires in general, that appeal does not reach the level of a singer. Singers are considered by most vampires to be a great find, the drinking of whose blood is an experience to be savored.


The oldest known vampire history is that of the Romanian coven (named for the location in which they originated, which would later be known as Romania), the most powerful coven during the time before 400 A.D. Their power resulted from their numbers; the Romanians were the first to expand their single coven beyond the normal two or three vampires. They had to cooperate in a way unusual to vampires to accomplish this (see ―The Transformation Process‖ for information about feeding frenzies), but their self-control extended only to their fellow vampires. The Romanian coven made no secret of its existence and both preyed on and enslaved humans indiscriminately. The Romanians were overthrown by the Volturi coven between 400 and 500 A.D.

The Volturi coven originated in Greece during the Mycenaean Era. It began with three original members — Aro, Caius, and Marcus — and then grew to a core of six as the members found romantic partners: Sulpicia, Athenodora, and Didyme. Ambition was their bonding element, much the same as with the Romanians. The Volturi actively recruited gifted humans into their coven. Eventually, using the basic argument that vampires should conform to simple laws of mutual convenience, the Volturi launched a successful war against the Romanians, who would not conform to these laws. The Volturi hunted the Romanians until there were only two survivors of the original coven, Stefan and Vladimir.

The Volturi coven is both the largest and easily the most talented group of vampires in existence.

The Volturi preserved ruling status over the years through coven strength and a policy of general noninterference. The Volturi coven is both the largest and easily the most talented group of vampires in existence, but they could still be overthrown if they gave the other vampires of the world a reason to unite against them. For this reason, the Volturi do not get involved with other vampires frequently, and act against other covens only when there is a complaint that could negatively affect other vampires. Consequently, they are commonly perceived by vampirekind as a positive force.

There are very few vampires alive who predate the Volturi. Most have been born into a world where the laws constructed by the Volturi are an accepted fact of life. This protects the Volturi from the realization that their laws are merely an excuse to exert control over the vampire world.


One notable event during the modern rule of the Volturi was the war that engulfed most of the southern part of North America during the early 1800s. Precipitated by a vampire known as Benito, the conflict began when Benito created a small army of newborns in order to conquer the older covens that controlled the majority of what is now Mexico and Texas. His tactic was so successful that most covens in the area created their own armies of newborns to defend against him and the other covens that were also reacting. The resulting disappearance and death toll was so alarming to the humans in the area that supernatural causes were suspected and reported (though the epidemic was later blamed on cholera). The Volturi eventually descended in force on the area and exterminated every coven that had experimented in the creation of newborn armies.


The basic law of the vampire world is that all vampires must protect the secret of their existence. This affects vampire life in a variety of ways. Vampires must be circumspect enough in their hunting and behavior that humans do not become aware of them. Or, if a human were to become aware, the vampire at fault would be responsible for silencing that human. Neither of these is a particularly difficult task.

As long as a vampire‘s interaction with humans does not garner wide attention, there is no consequence to the vampire. Many vampires have relationships with humans to varying degrees, and as long as these stay within boundaries, the Volturi are not aware. However, if something suspicious — something that might indicate the existence of vampires — was known widely enough to appear in the human news, or even in human fiction, the Volturi would hunt the rumor to its source.


Vampire laws are not written down; to write them would in itself be an infraction.

Vampire laws are passed by word of mouth from creator to newborn, and each creator is responsible for the behavior of his creation. If a newborn is abandoned by his creator (a rare occurrence, given the difficulty of creating a new vampire), the newborn, though ignorant of the law, is still punishable for any rash acts.


Sometimes group behavior will bring on a stronger response from the Volturi. The Southern Wars are one example. Another example would be the outlawing of immortal children.

Immortal children were humans who had been transformed into vampires at a very early age. There was no absolute age limit set as to what constituted an immortal child; it was a subjective definition, based on the child‘s ability to behave himself in a way consistent with vampire law.

Like all vampires, immortal children were frozen at the mental and physical age at which they were transformed. Post-transformation, these small children continued to exhibit childish behaviors, including impulsive acts, tantrums, irresponsible activities, and a general lack of circumspection. These behaviors were incompatible with the law of secrecy, and immortal children often attracted the notice of humans.

Another aspect of immortal children was their appeal; they were both beautiful and endearing. Covens were utterly devoted to their immortal children, and would protect them at all costs.

The Volturi found themselves punishing individual covens for the behavior of their immortal children with a much greater frequency than other occurrences of lawlessness. Because of the devotion inspired by immortal children, the Volturi were forced to destroy full covens in order to destroy an immortal child. After some study into the matter, the Volturi decreed that immortal children were not capable of following the law, and therefore it was no longer legal to create an immortal child. Anyone responsible for creating such a child would be destroyed whether that child had broken the law or not.

The Volturi continued to experiment with and study immortal children for centuries, but has never reversed its decision.

―The only time I really did any research on vampires was when the character Bella did research on vampires. Because I was creating my own world, I didn‘t want to find out just how many rules I was breaking.‖ —Stephenie


There are many myths about vampires, most of them created and put into circulation by the Volturi. Their purpose is to disguise the existence of vampires behind stories that could never be proven to have a basis in truth — and to make it possible for a vampire to easily ―prove‖ that he is not a vampire to a human who believes the myths (by touching a cross or standing in front of a mirror, for example). Additionally, these myths give humans a sense of control over the supernatural. Though vampires are never in any danger from humans, the Volturi contend that human ignorance makes hunting more convenient for all.


Vampires are burned by the sun.

Vampires are always unconscious during daylight hours.

Vampires have no reflection.

Vampires can be harmed by crosses, holy water, and garlic.

Vampires have visible fangs.

Vampires can assume the form of a bat.

Vampires must have permission to enter a house.

Vampires can be killed by a wooden stake stabbed into their hearts.

TRUTHS THE VOLTURI WERE ABLE TO ERADICATE OVER TIME: Vampires have red or black eyes (gold wasn‘t a known option at the time).

Vampires reflect sunlight prismatically.

Vampires never sleep.

Vampires are nearly indestructible.


Vampires are flammable.

Vampires are pale.

Vampires drink blood.

Vampires are beautiful.

Vampires are immortal.

One benefit of the surviving truths is that there are humans who actually seek out vampires in an attempt to gain beauty or immortality. This benefits the Volturi when they want a human front as a façade.


Though there are a range of vampire lifestyles, the most common is nomadic. The majority of vampires move frequently, never settling permanently in one place. This pattern is partly an attempt to hide from the notice of humans. If too many humans disappear from one area, suspicion might be aroused and the Volturi might take notice. Also, if a vampire interacts regularly with humans, eventually the humans will notice that the vampire isn‘t aging. Another aspect is boredom. Vampire lives are so long that many keep up a continuous search for novelty.

A few covens are exceptions to this rule, and maintain semipermanent or permanent homes. Doing this requires a great deal of subterfuge — if the coven wants to avoid suspicion and keep the Volturi from becoming involved — and most vampires don‘t care for the hassle.


Most commonly, a coven is made up of two members. One feature of the unchanging nature of vampires is that they mate for life. Once they fall in love, that feeling never fades. As a general rule, only the bond between mates is strong enough to survive the competitive drive for blood. Larger covens are less stable, and usually end because of internal violence.

The second bonding force, and one that is — unlike romantic love — able to keep a large coven stable, is ambition. Vampires are competitive by nature, and some vampires have been able to evolve this competitive disposition into a greater cause capable of uniting many individuals into a secure whole. The pursuit of power is that bonding cause for vampires. The Romanians were the first to do this successfully for a significant length of time.

The third, and rarest, bonding force is the vampire conscience. Very few vampires are born with or develop a value for human life. The consumption of human blood is such a known aspect of vampire life that few ever question it; the driving thirst for human blood seems irresistible. However, those who do learn to value human life in spite of this reality are able to subsist on animal blood. Vampires who live this way are sometimes referred to as ―vegetarians.‖

Animal blood is unappealing to vampires, and thus a difficult diet to maintain. Those who make the sacrifice, though, experience related benefits. In the absence of human blood, the competitive drive disappears. Vampires are able to form bonds of love in addition to the bond between mates.

The weak coven alliance is replaced by a strong, family-style union.


Another prevalent vampire trait, along with strong romantic bonds and the intense competitive streak, is that of a vengeful nature. Related again to their unchanging state, vampires are not forgiving; they do not move past an insult or injury. The most common example of vampire vengeance is the aftermath of the loss of a mate. When a vampire loses his mate, he never recovers from it. He cannot rest until the party responsible (usually another vampire, given the strength necessary to destroy a vampire) is eradicated. Centuries can pass without lessening the ferocity of his need for vengeance.


The biological passing of vampire traits is one of the least common exceptions to normal vampire life. Out of the thousands of vampires on the planet, there are only five known hybrids in existence, and these five all originated from only two sources.

Male vampires do have the capacity to pass on genetic material with a human female partner. However, it is beyond the ability of most vampires to be so close to a human physically and still resist the lure of her blood. Also, vampires are so much stronger than humans that any loss of self-control at such close proximity can quickly lead to mortal injury to the human.

Female vampires still carry ova similar to human ova, but the unchanging state of their bodies results in a total absence of a reproductive cycle. Even if the female vampire could somehow continue this cycle, her frozen body would be unable to grow and change to accommodate a growing and changing fetus.

One hybrid, Renesmee Cullen, was created by accident as the result of a rare romantic bonding between a vampire and a human. The other four hybrids, Nahuel and his three sisters, were all purposely created as an experiment by a vampire named Joham.

Vampire hybrids have both vampire and human traits. They are much stronger and faster than humans, with sharper senses, but not as strong, fast, or sharp as a pure vampire. They are strong enough, however, that human females are rarely able to survive the gestation period. The movement of a hybrid fetus causes extreme injury to the more fragile mother. If the gestation is survived, the birth is not. The usual method of delivery for a hybrid is for the hybrid to make her own escape from the womb. The hybrid must utilize her teeth, which have more in common with vampire teeth than human teeth, to pierce the amniotic sac — a membrane nearly as durable as vampire skin. This is too traumatic to the human body to be survived. Only the introduction of vampire venom to the mother‘s system can heal the injuries incurred; only one mother has ever survived to become a vampire.

Like the amniotic sac, a hybrid‘s skin is almost as durable as her vampire parent‘s skin, but it does not have the same prismatic reaction to sunlight. Hybrids can also have supernatural abilities, though not all do. Like humans, hybrids have a circulatory system and are warm-blooded. They can eat solid food, but generally find blood more appealing. They also sleep.

Their irises come in the usual range of human colors, and do not change in response to diet. In the first few years of their lives, hybrids grow and change like humans do, though at an extremely accelerated pace. After roughly seven years, the hybrid reaches physical adulthood and settles into the same unchanging state and conditional immortality that vampires enjoy. The hybrid mind develops much faster than the physical body; a hybrid has the mental capacity of an adult human by the time of her birth. Hybrids learn quickly to communicate with their caretakers, picking up their first language mere weeks after birth. This capacity for physical and mental maturation is what sets the hybrid apart from the immortal child.

The Cullen Coven

The Cullen coven, one of the largest stable vampire covens, is also one of the few that does not drink human blood. The Cullens call themselves ―vegetarians‖ because they instead choose to drink the blood of animals, putting more value on human life than do most of their peers. They consider the Denali clan their cousins, as that coven shares a similar philosophy.

Abstaining from human prey takes the competitive aspect out of the hunt, and as a result they are able to form stronger family bonds than traditional vampires.

The Cullens prefer to stay in one place as long as possible, choosing cloudy climates where they can go outside during the day without revealing their inhuman nature. But after six or seven years in one location, they are usually forced to move on, before their lack of aging is noticed. They own several residences so that they can return to places they have especially enjoyed — but only after enough time has passed that they won‘t be recognized as the same people who once lived there.

Each member of the coven maintains several well-tended identities, complete with the documents to support them, which allows the Cullens to establish themselves in new locations as necessary.

Each time the Cullens move, the relationships they claim to share with one another may shift, too.

Each time the Cullens move, the relationships they claim to share with one another may shift, too. In one place, two members might pose as father and adopted son; in another, brothers, or uncle and nephew. Regardless, the bonds of love and respect between members of the coven are immutable.

The Cullen family began when Carlisle transformed Edward. They then traveled across the United States together, gradually adding other members to the coven. The family is currently made up of eight vampires — four of whom have supernatural abilities beyond those of a normal vampire — and a vampire hybrid, who also has psychic gifts.








— Bella, on her first impressions of the Cullen grounds (Twilight, Chapter 15)

NAME: Carlisle Cullen

DATE OF BIRTH: circa 1640

DATE OF TRANSFORMATION: 1663, at approximately age 23

SOURCE OF TRANSFORMATION: An ancient vampire living in the sewers of London

PLACE OF ORIGIN: London, England


EYE COLOR: Blue (human); gold/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 6‘2‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Carlisle has a well-toned medium frame, collar-length hair, and movie-star good looks. He has a slight English accent from his youth, although he can speak with a flawless American accent.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: He does not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

EDUCATION/OCCUPATION: He has attended many universities, both as a student and as a professor. He has studied a variety of subjects, ranging from science to music, and typically works as a doctor.

HOBBIES: He collects art and books.

VEHICLE: A black Mercedes S55 AMG

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: He is married to Esme Cullen and considers Edward Cullen, Rosalie Hale, Emmett Cullen, Alice Cullen, and Jasper Hale his children; Bella Cullen his daughter-in-law; and Renesmee Cullen his granddaughter.


Carlisle‘s father was his only family. His mother died giving birth to him, and he had no siblings.

An Anglican pastor, Carlisle‘s father was a crusader against evil, leading hunts through London and the surrounding areas for witches, werewolves, and vampires. Self-righteous and compassionless, Carlisle‘s father caused many innocent people to be burned.

When he grew too old, he put Carlisle in charge of these raids. However, Carlisle had a very different temperament. He was not as quick to see evil where there was none. He was smart and persistent, though, and he eventually discovered an actual coven of vampires living in the sewers. He gathered a group of hunters and they waited for darkness to fall, suspecting that this was when the vampires would come out.

When a thirsty vampire did emerge, he attacked the hunters. Two were killed and Carlisle was wounded. Knowing that anything infected by the monster would be burned, Carlisle hid himself in a nearby cellar. During the transformation he never cried out, despite the agony he felt. When it was finally over and he realized what he had become, he was horror-struck. He tried to destroy himself by jumping from great heights and attempting to drown himself. When these methods didn‘t work, he tried to starve himself to death.

A newborn vampire‘s thirst is overwhelming, but Carlisle found the strength to resist.

Months passed, and Carlisle, filled with self-loathing, kept to the loneliest places he could find, places where he wouldn‘t stumble across a human. He understood his willpower was weakening.

One night a herd of deer passed by and, crazed with thirst, Carlisle attacked without thinking. After feeding, he felt his strength and sense of self return, and he realized he could live without killing human beings. He would feed on animals, just as he always had, drinking their blood now instead of eating their flesh.

Knowing that his father would hate him no matter how he lived his new life, Carlisle never returned home. He watched his father a few times from a distance but never made contact.

Carlisle had always been eager to learn, and now he had unlimited time. By night he studied music, science, and medicine in the universities of Europe. During his travels Carlisle encountered others of his kind. Most vampires Carlisle crossed paths with responded to his natural amicability; in this way he is a novelty among vampires.

The vampires of this coven were very different from the sewer-dwellers of London. They were refined and cultured, and Carlisle admired their civility.

While studying in Italy in the early 1700s, Carlisle was discovered by the Volturi, an ancient coven of vampires founded by Aro, Caius, and Marcus. The vampires of this coven were very different from the sewer-dwellers of London. They were refined and cultured, and Carlisle admired their civility. But Aro, Caius, and Marcus never stopped trying to change Carlisle‘s aversion to what they called his ―natural food source,‖ and Carlisle never stopped trying to persuade them of the value of his pro-human philosophy. Over time, a legend formed among the humans in Italy of a stregoni benefici, or ―good vampire,‖ who was the avowed enemy of evil vampires, though Carlisle was always on friendly terms with the Volturi. After about two decades in Italy, Carlisle decided to travel to the New World. He was growing increasingly lonely and longed to find other vampires who believed there was a life for them that didn‘t involve murder.

When Carlisle reached America, things didn‘t change for him the way he‘d hoped. He didn‘t find other vampires like him. He was, however, able to begin a career in medicine. He felt that by saving human lives he could compensate in some measure for the existence of vampires.

Carlisle couldn‘t risk more than a cordial acquaintance with his coworkers, for fear of exposing what he was, and his enforced solitude and lack of intimacy pained him. So he began to deliberate creating a companion. However, he was reluctant to steal a life the way his had been stolen.

The goodness and purity in Edward‘s face finally convinced Carlisle to take action.

For decades he debated with himself about whether or not it was right to doom another to the life of a vampire. The plea of a dying woman, Elizabeth Masen, helped him make his decision. In 1918, Carlisle was working nights at a hospital in Chicago as an epidemic of Spanish influenza raged through the city. Elizabeth‘s husband died in the first wave of the epidemic, but Elizabeth and her teenage son, Edward, managed to stay alive for a while longer. Carlisle was with Elizabeth on her last night. She begged him to save her son, intuiting that Carlisle was more than what he seemed. She died less than an hour later. Her son lay in the room with her, his own death imminent. The goodness and purity in Edward‘s face finally convinced Carlisle to take action. Carlisle bit Edward, effecting his transformation.



— Edward (Twilight, Chapter 14)

Both Carlisle and Edward were surprised to discover Edward‘s ability to read minds, but due to his experience with the Volturi, Carlisle quickly understood the phenomenon.

Carlisle and Edward began traveling together, using the cover story that Edward was the younger brother of Carlisle‘s late wife. In 1921, they moved to Ashland, Wisconsin, and there the Cullen coven gained another member. While working in a local hospital, Carlisle was called to the bedside of a young woman grievously injured in a suicide attempt. Carlisle was surprised to recognize Esme Evenson, whom he had treated for a broken leg about ten years earlier, when she was a teenager. It was almost impossible for him to believe that that vivacious, beautiful girl had come to this tragic end. Carlisle knew he could not save her life through conventional methods.

Influenced by his memory of the happy girl Esme had been, Carlisle bit the dying woman and took her to the home he shared with Edward to wait for the transformation to be complete.

When it was over, Carlisle apologized for what he had done, but Esme was not unhappy with the situation. She remembered their first meeting, too, and had always considered Carlisle her ideal of a gentleman. Carlisle and Esme soon fell in love and were married.

The coven‘s cover story now changed: Edward began to be introduced as Esme‘s brother.

In many ways, however, Edward regarded Carlisle as his father and Esme as his mother. Carlisle now had more than the companion he‘d longed for; he had a family.

Carlisle wasn‘t expecting the coven to get any bigger, but one night while on his way to work at a hospital in Rochester, New York, he discovered the nearly lifeless body of Rosalie Hale lying in the road. She had been beaten, sexually assaulted, and left for dead. Struck by the waste of a beautiful young life, Carlisle brought Rosalie home and transformed her, hoping in the back of his mind that one day she might be a companion for Edward.

Two years later, Rosalie had only reluctantly assimilated to vampire life. The relationship Carlisle had hoped would spark between her and Edward hadn‘t happened. So when Rosalie carried the dying Emmett McCarty to Carlisle and begged Carlisle to change him, Carlisle did as she asked. Rosalie wanted a companion of her choosing, and Carlisle felt he could make amends to her in this way.

At this point Carlisle and his family moved to Washington State, west of the Olympic Peninsula. To his surprise, he discovered a local Native American tribe who had the ability to transform into wolves. The Quileutes had previous experience with vampires, whom they called the cold ones, and they considered it their sacred duty to protect humans from them.

Unwilling to harm the werewolves, Carlisle brokered a treaty with the leader of the pack, Ephraim Black, utilizing Edward‘s mind-reading abilities to communicate. The treaty established boundary lines for both the Cullens and the Quileutes. The Cullens agreed never to hurt a human, which included never transforming a human into a vampire, since the Quileutes considered transformation the same as killing. Both the vampires and the werewolves promised to keep the true nature of the other secret from humans.

The family continued to move when necessary, and in Denali, Alaska, Carlisle found what he‘d been looking for when he set off for America — a coven of vampires who shared his philosophy and drank only animal blood. The two covens ended up close friends, viewing each other as extended family.

The Cullen family grew when they were joined by Alice Brandon and Jasper Whitlock, who had been traveling together as a couple. Since the family was now quite large, a new cover story was devised. Edward, Alice, and Emmett were now said to be the adopted children of Carlisle and Esme. Jasper and Rosalie, who looked alike, were passed off as Esme‘s twin orphaned cousins.

Eventually, the Cullen family returned to Washington State, this time to Forks, somewhat north of their previous location. Carlisle took a job at Forks Hospital and became well regarded in the community as a doctor and a citizen.


“I look at my… son. His strength, his goodness, the brightness that shines out of him…

How could there not be more for one such as Edward?” New Moon, Chapter 2

“I‟ve never been to veterinarian school.” Eclipse, Chapter 25

“I can imagine what you think of me for that. But I can‟t ignore her will. It wouldn‟t be right to make such a choice for her, to force her.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 12

“She hasn‟t gone for his throat even once.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 22

“It‟s an interesting twist. Like she‟s doing the exact opposite of what you can.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 34

NAME: Edward Anthony Masen Cullen

DATE OF BIRTH: June 20, 1901



PLACE OF ORIGIN: Chicago, Illinois


EYE COLOR: Green (human); gold/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 6‘2‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Edward is thin and lanky but muscular. He has untidy bronze hair and boyish looks.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: He can read the thoughts of anyone in close proximity to him, with the exception of Bella Cullen.

EDUCATION/OCCUPATION: He has two medical degrees but has never worked as a doctor. His other graduate degrees are in literature, mathematics, law, mechanical engineering, several languages, art history, and international business. Edward owns his family‘s house in Chicago, and about every fifty years or so, he ―inherits‖ his family fortune from himself.

HOBBIES: He loves music — he plays a variety of instruments, sings, and has an extensive vinyl and CD collection. He also enjoys collecting cars.

VEHICLES: A silver Volvo S60R and a silver Aston Martin V12 Vanquish FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: He is married to Bella Cullen and has a daughter, Renesmee Cullen. He is the natural son of Edward and Elizabeth Masen, and the

―adopted‖ son of Carlisle and Esme Cullen. He thinks of himself as a brother to Alice and Emmett Cullen, as well as to Rosalie and Jasper Hale.


Edward was born to Edward and Elizabeth Masen on June 20, 1901. He was their only child. His father, a successful lawyer, provided Edward with many advantages, including music lessons and the opportunity to attend private school; however, although his father provided for Edward in material ways, he was emotionally distant and often away from home on business.

This absence was made up for by Edward‘s close relationship with his mother; he was the center of her life.

Edward excelled at his studies and became an accomplished pianist. As he grew older, Edward became enamored of the life of a soldier. World War I raged during most of his adolescence, and Edward dreamed of the day he could join the battle. His mother‘s greatest fear was that she would lose Edward in the war. Every night she prayed that it would end before her only son turned eighteen and was old enough to enlist.

Nine months before his eighteenth birthday, the Spanish influenza hit Chicago, infecting all of Edward‘s family. Gravely ill, they were treated in the hospital where Dr. Carlisle Cullen worked. Edward‘s father quickly succumbed to the disease. On her deathbed and fearing for her son‘s life, Elizabeth Masen begged Dr. Cullen to do what was necessary to save her son.

Somehow she seemed to know Dr. Cullen had a supernatural means to save Edward.

―Unfortunately Edward isn‘t based on anybody — he is all imagination and wishing.

I think his allure is partially due to his old-fashioned manners. He‘s a gentleman, and those are hard to come by these days.‖ —Stephenie

Moved by Elizabeth Masen‘s plea and having already thoroughly considered the idea of creating a companion, Carlisle took Edward from the hospital late that night, carrying the unconscious boy to his home. There Edward became the first human Carlisle changed into a vampire.





— Bella, on Edward (Twilight, Chapter 15)

Edward formed a deep bond with Carlisle, who became a father to him, gaining Edward‘s trust and love the way his natural father never had. It was Carlisle who first realized that Edward possessed mind-reading abilities; he noticed Edward answering questions that Carlisle had not asked aloud. Edward had always had a knack for reading people; after his transformation, this ability blossomed into a true psychic talent.

Edward‘s new family gained a member when Carlisle transformed Esme to save her life after her suicide attempt. Edward was still young enough to appreciate a mother‘s care, and Esme gave it to him. Edward grew to love his new ―father‖ and ―mother.‖ But as much as he respected Carlisle‘s ideals and valued Esme‘s gentleness and tenderness, he couldn‘t help questioning what it meant to be a vampire.

After almost a decade of living with Carlisle, Edward decided to leave his new parents and experience an alternate style of vampire life. He began drinking human blood instead of animal blood. Rather than become a true villain in his own estimation, he became a vigilante.

Edward used his mind-reading abilities to target serious criminals as his victims — murderers, rapists, abusers, pedophiles, and the like. For his first victim, he tracked down Charles Evenson, Esme‘s abusive ex-husband. In the end, though, he couldn‘t accept taking so many human lives, no matter the justification, and in 1931 he returned home to Carlisle and Esme and their way of life.

―I like that Edward‘s not so clean-cut, that he has a dark side, that he‘s doing things that are not clearly legal or illegal.‖ —Stephenie Edward knew from hearing their thoughts that Carlisle and Esme were sometimes concerned that he had no romantic love in his life. When Carlisle transformed Rosalie Hale and brought her into the family in 1933, Edward knew that Carlisle and Esme hoped she and Edward would become a couple. But as stunningly beautiful as Rosalie was physically, Edward was not attracted to her somewhat shallow and self-absorbed mind. The feeling was mutual. Edward and Rosalie always treated each other as brother and sister, and were not always on the best of terms.

When the Cullen family lived in Alaska, Edward had another opportunity to find romance, this time with Tanya, the leader of the Denali coven, a group that also practiced a

―vegetarian‖ lifestyle. Though Tanya was interested in Edward, he did not return that interest. It wasn‘t until the Cullen family returned to Forks in 2003 that anyone captured Edward‘s attention. There Edward met a human girl named Bella Swan. Bella was markedly different from every other person he‘d ever met in two impossible-to-overlook ways: First, her blood ―sang‖ for him the way no other human‘s had; second, her mind was the first he‘d encountered that was entirely closed to his mind-reading abilities.


“On the contrary, I find you very difficult to read.” Twilight, Chapter 2

“No blood, no foul.” Twilight, Chapter 3

“What if I‟m not a superhero? What if I‟m the bad guy?” Twilight, Chapter 5

“Honestly — I‟ve seen corpses with better color. I was concerned that I might have to avenge your murder.” Twilight, Chapter 5

“I‟ve decided that as long as I was going to hell, I might as well do it thoroughly.”

Twilight, Chapter 5

“Your number was up the first time I met you.” Twilight, Chapter 8

“You aren‟t concerned about my diet?” Twilight, Chapter 9

“Hadn‟t you noticed? I‟m breaking all the rules now.” Twilight, Chapter 10

―Be safe.‖ Twilight, Chapter 12

“Yes, you are exactly my brand of heroin.” Twilight, Chapter 13

“I may not be a human, but I am a man.” Twilight, Chapter 14

“It will be as if I‟d never existed.” New Moon, Chapter 3

“Amazing. Carlisle was right.” New Moon, Chapter 20

“Marry me first.” New Moon, Chapter 24

“Well, I‟m nearly a hundred and ten. It‟s time I settled down.” New Moon, Chapter 24

“I was all braced for the wrath that was going to put grizzlies to shame, and this is what I get? I should infuriate you more often.” Eclipse, Chapter 8

“I was that boy, who would have — as soon as I discovered that you were what I was looking for — gotten down on one knee and endeavored to secure your hand. I would have wanted you for eternity, even when the word didn‟t have quite the same connotations.” Eclipse, Chapter 12

“The way you regard me is ludicrous.” Eclipse, Chapter 19

“Would you please stop trying to take your clothes off?” Eclipse, Chapter 20

“I lived through an entire twenty-four hours thinking that you were dead, Bella. That changed the way I look at a lot of things.” Eclipse, Chapter 21

“But if I had been able to take your place last night, it would not have made the top ten of the best nights of my life. Dream about that.” Eclipse, Chapter 23

“I just beheaded and dismembered a sentient creature not twenty yards from you. That doesn‟t bother you?” Eclipse, Chapter 25

“I love you. I want you. Right now.” Eclipse, Chapter 27

“You‟re awfully small to be so hugely irritating.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 4

“I‟m not ready for you to kill me yet, Jacob Black. You‟ll have to have a little patience.”

Breaking Dawn, Chapter 9

“Even you, Jacob Black, cannot hate me as much as I hate myself.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 9

“I am truly sorry for the pain this causes you, Jacob. Though you hate me, I must admit that I don‟t feel the same about you. I think of you as a… a brother in many ways. A comrade in arms, at the very least. I regret your suffering more than you realize. But Bella is going to survive and I know that‟s what really matters to you.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 17

“Now it‟s your turn to not break me .” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 20

“It goes against the grain, letting you wrestle with lions. I was having an anxiety attack the whole time.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 21

“Maybe I‟m hoping she‟ll get irritated and rip your head off.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 22

“I am her father. Not her creator — her biological father.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 30

“Don‟t be sad for him. He‟s happy now. Today, he‟s finally begun to forgive himself.”

Breaking Dawn, Chapter 39



— Edward, to Bella (Breaking Dawn, Chapter 5)

NAME: Esme Anne Platt Evenson Cullen




PLACE OF ORIGIN: Columbus, Ohio

HAIR COLOR: Caramel brown

EYE COLOR: Brown (human); gold/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘6‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Esme has a heart-shaped face. Her body is small and slender, but curvy.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: She does not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

EDUCATION/OCCUPATION: She has degrees in architecture and art, and has also studied photography.

HOBBIES: She loves to restore old houses.

VEHICLE: None; she borrows one of her family members‘ cars whenever she needs a vehicle.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: Before her transformation, she was married to Charles Evenson and had a son who died shortly after birth. She is currently married to Carlisle and considers Edward Cullen, Rosalie Hale, Emmett Cullen, Alice Cullen, and Jasper Hale her children; Bella Cullen her daughter-in-law; and Renesmee Cullen her granddaughter.


Esme Anne Platt grew up on a farm outside of Columbus, Ohio. As a child, she lived a happy life, although in her teen years she found it hard to conform to the behavior that was expected of a respectable young lady at the time.

Although she mentioned it to no one at the time, meeting Carlisle affected her deeply.

In 1911, Esme fell and broke her leg while climbing a tree. The local doctor was away, and she ended up being treated by Dr. Carlisle Cullen. Although she mentioned it to no one at the time, meeting Carlisle affected her deeply. He was unlike anyone she had ever met — genuinely thoughtful, and truly interested in what she had to say. Unfortunately, he was in town only briefly and soon left, but she never forgot him.

Esme‘s friends began to marry, and before long she was the only one still unwed. Esme wanted to fall in love herself, but she never found anyone who measured up to her memory of Carlisle. Esme tried to persuade her father to allow her to pursue a teaching position in the West, but he didn‘t think it was respectable for a lady to live alone in the wilds. Instead, her father pressured her to accept the son of a family friend who wanted to marry her. Several years Esme‘s senior, Charles Evenson had good prospects. Esme was indifferent to Charles, but not opposed to him, so she agreed to the marriage to please her father.

Esme quickly discovered that the marriage was a mistake; Charles‘s public face was very different from his private one. He physically abused her. Her parents rejected her plea for asylum; they counseled her to be a ―good wife‖ and keep quiet. When Charles left to fight in World War I, it was an enormous relief. When he returned unscathed in 1919, it was a nightmare.

Soon after his return, Esme became pregnant. The baby was Esme‘s motivation to escape — she would not bring a child into Charles‘s home. Esme ran away and went to stay with a cousin in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. When her husband discovered her whereabouts, she fled to

Ashland, Wisconsin, where she posed as a war widow. In order to support herself, Esme pursued her old dream of being a schoolteacher.

Esme began building a life for herself and her baby. She loved the unborn child more than her own life. But two days after her son was born, he died of lung fever. Feeling as if she had lost everything, Esme walked to a cliff outside of town and jumped.


Esme regained consciousness in excruciating pain. Despite the pain, Esme was amazed to see Carlisle again, not sure if she was in heaven or hell. When the transformation was over, Carlisle explained that he‘d turned her into a vampire in order to save her life. Esme was not as upset as he had expected. Adjusting to her new vampire nature had its challenges, and there were times when the call of human blood was too strong for her to resist; still, she was happy to be with the man she‘d always idolized. Her youthful crush transitioned easily into full-fledged love.

Before long, Carlisle and Esme married. She never lost her maternal instincts, and as the oldest of the Cullens, she automatically fell into a mothering role with Edward and, later, the other members of the family.


“Well, I do think of them as my children in most ways. I never could get over my mothering instincts — did Edward tell you I had lost a child?” Twilight, Chapter 17

“He‟s been the odd man out for far too long; it‟s hurt me to see him alone.” Twilight, Chapter 17

“I prefer to referee — I like keeping them honest.” Twilight, Chapter 17

“We‟d never allow anything to happen to you, sweetheart.” Eclipse, Chapter 4

―They ended up being vampires in the way they are because I have strong opinions on free will. No matter what position you‘re in, you always have a choice. So I had these characters who were in a position where traditionally they would have been the bad guys,but, instead, they chose to be something different — a theme that has always been importantto me.‖ —Stephenie

NAME: Rosalie Lillian Hale


DATE OF TRANSFORMATION: Late 1933, at age 18


PLACE OF ORIGIN: Rochester, New York

HAIR COLOR: Golden blond

EYE COLOR: Dark blue, almost violet (human); gold/black (vampire) HEIGHT: 5‘9‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Rosalie has strikingly beautiful features and a stunning, statuesque physique. Her wavy blond hair falls halfway down her back.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: She does not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

EDUCATION/OCCUPATION: She has earned degrees in electrical engineering, business, and astrophysics, and has studied medicine (the last as a favor to Carlisle, to help keep him up-to-date with the latest advances).

HOBBIES: She enjoys enhancing cars and doing anything mechanical.

VEHICLE: Red BMW M3 convertible

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: She is married to Emmett Cullen. She considers Carlisle and Esme Cullen to be her parents; Edward Cullen, Alice Cullen, and Jasper Hale to be her siblings; Bella Cullen to be her sister-in-law; and Renesmee Cullen to be her niece. Before her transformation, she grew up with her biological parents and two younger brothers.


Rosalie Hale was born to a banker and his wife in Rochester, New York. Luckily, the bank her father worked at stayed solvent through the stock-market crash and resulting economic downturn. The Great Depression did not seriously impact Rosalie‘s family the way it did many less fortunate families. Her parents were eager to do better, though — to move in higher social circles. As Rosalie grew and her beauty increased, they hoped her loveliness would open doors for them.

Rosalie enjoyed her parents‘ pride in her looks, her father‘s pleasure in buying her beautiful clothes, her girlfriends‘ envy, and the admiration of every man she passed. The result of all this attention was that Rosalie tended to be self-absorbed and rather shallow, with a focus on the material.




— Rosalie, on her human life (Eclipse, Chapter 7) At eighteen, Rosalie was considered the most beautiful girl in Rochester, and possibly the state of New York. Her family was moderately wealthy and she wanted for nothing. Rosalie envied no one… except for her friend Vera. Vera had a husband who loved her and the most adorable baby boy, Henry. Rosalie longed for a husband and a baby of her own. When Rosalie caught the eye of Royce King II, the son of the richest man in Rochester, she felt that she was on her way to having absolutely everything she‘d ever wanted. Her parents were overjoyed; a whirlwind courtship and plans for an extravagant wedding quickly followed.

One night, a week before the wedding, Rosalie was walking home after a visit with Vera.

A few blocks from her street she heard the drunken laughter of a group of men. A moment later, she realized one of them was Royce. She‘d never seen Royce drunk before, and didn‘t know the dark side of his character. Royce and his friends brutally assaulted and raped Rosalie. Thinking her dead, they abandoned her in the road.

Moments later, Carlisle Cullen found Rosalie and transformed her to save her life. He hoped that Rosalie might make a suitable companion for Edward, but they never viewed each other in that way, though they did come to love each other as brother and sister.

One of the first things Rosalie did as a vampire was to take revenge on Royce and his friends. She hunted her attackers down one by one, saving Royce for last because she wanted him to suffer psychologically from the fear of knowing that something was coming for him. She tortured all of her attackers to death, but she didn‘t drink their blood; she was repulsed by the idea of having any part of them inside her. She and Carlisle (and, later, Bella) are the only vampires in the Cullen clan who have never killed humans for blood.

Though vengeance was satisfying in its way, Rosalie remained deeply unhappy in her vampire life. She missed her human family greatly. More than that, the chance to have what she most longed for — a husband who loved her, a baby of her own — had been taken from her along with her humanity.

Two years later, Rosalie‘s life changed. While the Cullens were living in Tennessee, she discovered a man, Emmett McCarty, being mauled by a bear in the woods. Something about the man reminded Rosalie of her friend Vera‘s young son, and Rosalie didn‘t want him to die. She rescued Emmett and took him to Carlisle. She asked Carlisle to transform him, even though she hated her own vampire existence and knew her request was selfish.

―There are characters that I have to work for a little bit harder, and sort of get down to their motivations. A few of them — Rosalie, for example — were difficult. It took me a while to figure out what her thing was.‖ —Stephenie But Emmett didn‘t see Rosalie as selfish; he fell in love with her, and he easily adapted to vampire life. He and Rosalie soon married — and did so repeatedly over the decades. Rosalie loved being the center of attention as the bride, and Emmett loved making her happy. The two have sometimes lived as a couple apart from the rest of the Cullen family.


“I‟m so very sorry, Bella. I feel wretched about every part of this, and so grateful that you were brave enough to go save my brother after what I did. Please say you‟ll forgive me.”

New Moon, Chapter 22

“It‟s just that… this is not the life I would have chosen for myself. I wish there had been someone there to vote no for me.” New Moon, Chapter 24

“Would you like to hear my story, Bella? It doesn‟t have a happy ending — but which of ours does? If we had happy endings, we‟d all be under gravestones now.” Eclipse, Chapter 7

“Over my pile of ashes.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 10

“Oh, wonderful. I knew I smelled something nasty.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 15

“You. Got. Food. In. My. Hair.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 15

“I‟ll help him toss you, dog. I owe you a good kick in the gut.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 22

NAME: Emmett McCarty Cullen




PLACE OF ORIGIN: Gatlinburg, Tennessee

HAIR COLOR: Dark brown, almost black

EYE COLOR: Blue (human); gold/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 6‘5‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Emmett has an imposing frame; he is both tall and extremely muscular. His hair is curly and nearly black. He has dimples when he smiles, and his face has an innocent quality not often seen in a grown man.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: He does not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

EDUCATION/OCCUPATION: He has attended high school and college multiple times. He‘s never finished any particular degree, preferring instead to move quickly from one subject that interests him to the next.

HOBBIES: He loves competitive sports and games, especially anything that involves a physical challenge.

VEHICLE: Red Jeep Wrangler modified for off-roading FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: He is married to Rosalie Hale. He considers Carlisle and Esme Cullen to be his parents; Edward Cullen, Alice Cullen, and Jasper Hale to be his siblings; Bella Cullen to be his sister-in-law; and Renesmee Cullen to be his niece.


Emmett grew up in the small town of Gatlinburg, Tennessee, part of a large Scotch-Irish family. He had what his parents considered a wild adolescence; never one to worry about consequences, Emmett ran with a wild crowd that drank, gambled, and womanized. Emmett was always a help to his family, however. He was an excellent hunter and woodsman, and always kept the McCartys supplied with game. When he was twenty years old and out on a routine hunting trip in the Smoky Mountains, he was attacked by a large black bear. Emmett was close to losing consciousness when he thought he heard a second bear fighting with the first. He figured they were battling over who would get his corpse.

Then the growling stopped and Emmett felt like he was flying. He managed to open his eyes and saw what he thought was an angel. When the transformation began and the fiery agony spread through his body, he was sure he‘d died and gone to hell.

In his delirium, he‘d seen Rosalie as an angel and Carlisle as God, but in fact they were both vampires — and now he was a vampire, too.

When the pain left him, Emmett learned what had really happened to him. In his delirium, he‘d seen Rosalie as an angel and Carlisle as God, but in fact they were both vampires — and now he was a vampire, too. He took the truth in stride; Emmett was never one to worry about situations outside of his control. He continues to think of Rosalie as his angel.

With his naturally happy nature, Emmett adjusted easily to the idea of being a vampire.

Learning to control himself, however, was a more difficult challenge. In the years just after his transformation, Emmett was often unable to resist human blood. The Cullens were forced to move often until Emmett learned to restrain himself.



— Edward, on Rosalie (Twilight, Chapter 14)

He genuinely bonded with all the members of his new family and, aside from his dietary lapses, also made their lives more comfortable. Emmett‘s easygoing nature brought out Edward‘s more optimistic side, and Rosalie became a different person altogether. When Emmett, ever practical, wanted to provide for his human family, Edward gave him a small fortune, which Emmett left in a bag on their doorstep. Even though he knew he could never again be a part of their family, he wanted to ease the burden of losing a strong, hardworking son. After doing what he could for them, he didn‘t look back.

Eventually, Emmett and Rosalie married — and have remarried more than once over the years, because Rosalie enjoys the process and the attention so much. At various times they have lived apart from the rest of the Cullen family as a married couple.


“Hell, yes!” New Moon, Chapter 24

“I‟m really glad Edward didn‟t kill you. Everything‟s so much more fun with you around.” Eclipse, Chapter 4

“Nice to have toddlers guarding the fort.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 11

“Did ya get in a couple of good swipes?” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 22

“So it‟s still standing? I would‟ve thought you two had knocked it to rubble by now. What were you doing last night? Discussing the national debt?” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 25

“I‟m sure you‟ll ace your classes… apparently there‟s nothing interesting for you to do at night besides study.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 25

“‟Bout time somebody scored around here.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 25

“She‟s too tame .” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 26

“Not much wild about you , is there? I bet that cottage doesn‟t have a scratch.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 26

NAME: Mary Alice Brandon Cullen; preferred name: Alice DATE OF BIRTH: 1901


SOURCE OF TRANSFORMATION: An unnamed vampire who worked in a mental institution

PLACE OF ORIGIN: Biloxi, Mississippi


EYE COLOR: Dark brown (human); gold/black (vampire) HEIGHT: 4‘10‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Alice is tiny and graceful. Her hair is very short and spiky because her head was shaved in a mental hospital and her hair was in the process of growing out when she was transformed.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: She can see into the future, although what she sees is based on decisions being made; thus, she must wait for a decision to be firmly rooted in the mind, or acted upon, before she can see the end result. Her talent is limited to humans and vampires because she has been both; she cannot see the futures of werewolves or hybrid vampires.

EDUCATION/OCCUPATION: She has attended high school and college several times.

She has degrees in fashion design and international business. One of the ways she makes money is by using her gift for seeing the future to predict windfall investments in the stock market.

HOBBIES: She plays the stock market and loves designing and shopping for clothes.

VEHICLES: A canary yellow Porsche 911 Turbo

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: Alice is married to Jasper Hale. She considers Carlisle and Esme Cullen to be her parents; Edward Cullen, Rosalie Hale, and Emmett Cullen to be her siblings; Bella Cullen to be her sister-in-law; and Renesmee Cullen to be her niece. She had a human sister named Cynthia, and she has a human niece who still resides in Biloxi.


Mary Alice Brandon — or Alice, as she was commonly known — lived in a middle-class home in Biloxi, Mississippi, with her parents and her sister, Cynthia, who was nine years younger. Her father was a jeweler and a pearl trader. He bought the pearls from local divers and then moved the pearls inland to be sold in more profitable markets away from the coast. His job kept him away from the family for days at a time. Alice‘s mother tended to their home and the orchard on their property, and took care of Alice and Cynthia. The girls were fairly close despite the wide age difference between them.

Alice had the gift of foresight even as a little girl, but her premonitions were not nearly as strong as they would be later in her life. They came to her more as feelings than visions. At first her parents thought her premonitions were amusing. ―Alice is always right,‖ they would say when the five-year-old dressed herself in a slicker even though the sky was blue; later, of course, the rain would begin. ―Grandma will be here soon,‖ she would announce. They would laugh and put out an extra plate.

―Alice was a character who just popped into existence fully formed — so easily. It was like if Edward existed, then he must have a sister named Alice, and she would be this person. And she was one of the things that was sad for me with the book, because I wantedher to be real so much. Oh, I would love to have a friend like that. There must be someonejust like her somewhere, because it seemed so obvious that s he must exist.‖ —Stephenie As Alice grew older, she became more hesitant to share her predictions. She hated looking ridiculous when her premonitions turned out to be wrong. (Weather was the easiest for her to predict correctly, because it didn‘t involve people and their tendencies to change their minds.) By age ten, she rarely voiced her predictions at all, but those she did give came true often enough that people started to talk. ―That uncanny child of the Brandons‖ was seldom asked to other children‘s birthday parties. Alice‘s mother loved her deeply and counseled her to keep quiet about her premonitions.

By the time Alice turned eighteen, she‘d learned to ignore her gift, for the most part, but occasionally she felt compelled to speak.

People started to use the words witch and changeling when talking about her.

By the time Alice turned eighteen, she‘d learned to ignore her gift, for the most part, but occasionally she felt compelled to speak. When she did, it sometimes turned out badly, such as when Alice warned a friend not to marry a certain man; the friend ignored her, and it was revealed that the man‘s family had a history of insanity. Rather than blame herself or her husband, the friend whispered to others that Alice had put a curse on her. On another occasion, one of Alice‘s favorite cousins planned to go west to seek his fortune, and Alice begged him not to. The cousin died in an accident on the road, and his parents — Alice‘s aunt and uncle — blamed Alice for jinxing his trip. People started to use the words witch and changeling when talking about her.

Then Alice had her most terrifying vision. She saw her mother being murdered by a stranger in the woods on her way into town. She told her mother what she had seen, and her mother listened to her. Alice‘s mother kept her daughters in the house with the doors locked and a pistol loaded. Mr. Brandon returned home from a trip two days later to a dirty house full of terrified women and empty of food. On Mrs. Brandon‘s insistence, he searched the woods near the road but found nothing. He was angry with Alice‘s ―damned stories‖ and ordered Alice not to put everyone in a panic again.

Alice began to be haunted by flashes of the stranger, still stalking her mother. When she told her parents what she‘d seen, her father was furious with Alice‘s hysteria. He insisted that the family go about their usual routine. But he was often gone, and when he was, Alice‘s mother followed Alice‘s desperate warnings as much as possible. Still, she had to shop for supplies and tend her orchard. When a month passed and no one had seen the man, Mrs. Brandon grew less wary. She began returning her friends‘ visits and attending sewing circles. She took the pistol with her every time she left the house — at first. After two months, she started to forget.

One night Alice had a perfectly clear vision of the man in a Model T running her mother‘s buggy off the road just outside of town, where there was a steep drop. Alice‘s mother had already left home in the buggy. Alice ran after her, seeing in her mind the stranger watching the crashed buggy to be sure there was no movement inside. Next she had a vision of the man driving away from the scene of the accident. Alice knew she was too late, but she kept running.

The death of Alice‘s mother was declared accidental, and Alice‘s protestations to the contrary were met with disdain and suspicion. Alice‘s father ordered her to be silent.

Mr. Brandon remarried within six months of his wife‘s death. The woman was a blond Yankee from Illinois who was only ten years older than Alice; Mr. Brandon had frequently sold pearls to her jeweler father in the past. The new Mrs. Brandon was quite cold to Alice, though she made a pet of the younger Cynthia.

Even unguided by visions, Alice was bright. Careless, offhand comments by her new stepmother and evidence of longer preparations for this marriage than should have been possible made Alice suspicious. She took her suspicions to her father, who raged at her for suggesting ill of his new wife.

The night after her confrontation with her father, Alice had a vision of him and the stranger who had killed her mother. Her father was giving the man money. Then Alice had a vision of the man standing over her with a knife. Too late, she realized that she‘d confided in exactly the wrong person. Alice rushed out into the night and ran five miles to the home of her aunt and uncle, her only living relatives. Alice beat on the door until they answered, then gasped out her story: Her father had arranged to have her mother murdered and was sending the killer after her next. The aunt — who still blamed Alice for her son‘s death — shoved Alice off the porch and told her husband to get the dogs and drive Alice away.

Both her aunt and her father were already there, and the marshal had been informed that Alice had gone mad.

Alice hurried ten more miles back to town and arrived at the town marshal‘s house to find it lit and busy. Both her aunt and her father were already there, and the marshal had been informed that Alice had gone mad. Alice accused her father of his crimes and her stepmother of complicity, but no one listened. Most people already thought Alice was crazy — or possessed by the devil. The marshal was paid well to have Alice put quietly into an asylum two counties away.

Few people knew what had actually happened, and everyone who did know the truth was very understanding about the Brandons‘ desire to pretend that Alice had died.

In the mental asylum, Alice‘s head was shaved during the threat of a typhoid outbreak.

She also endured electroshock therapy. The treatment caused her to lose her memory, but it also allowed her naturally cheerful and humorous disposition to return, since she no longer remembered the sadness and horror of her recent life.

Unknown to Alice, a vampire was working as a grounds-keeper at the asylum where she was incarcerated. This vampire, who was taking advantage of this pool of humans who could die without much notice being taken, formed an attachment to Alice. He kept her from the shock treatments and other horrors whenever he could. He learned of Alice‘s abilities; she always knew when he was coming to visit her. He would bring hidden objects with him, to see if she could guess what he had. She always got it right.

Then Alice had a vision of James.

Then Alice had a vision of James. It occurred the moment he caught her scent, old and faded, in her hometown two counties away. She saw James find her. She told her only friend, the vampire, and he knew that what she was seeing was fact. He planned to escape with her, but Alice saw James catching up to her anyway. He offered other options, but every choice ended with James. Then the groundskeeper decided to change her. Alice saw that this would be very close. There might not be time for her blood to transform sufficiently for James to gain nothing in killing her. The vampire had heard enough. He bit Alice immediately and took her away to hide her. Knowing this would barely slow James, he put himself in James‘s path to delay him.

From Alice‘s vision, he knew James was a strong hunter, and that it was a fight he would not win.

She was able to see the best future for herself.

After her transformation, Alice awoke alone. The pain of the transformation had the same effect on Alice as the shocks; she remembered nothing of her life in the asylum, or of the vampire who had transformed her. She was unaware of James as the reason for her change.

Fortunately, Alice‘s psychic gifts were now greatly enhanced and strengthened. She was able to see the best future for herself.

Alice‘s first clear vision as a vampire was of Jasper Whitlock. She knew that Jasper was her future mate, but she also knew that he wasn‘t ready for her yet. Instead of going to look for him, she waited for him to find her. In the meantime, she practiced — with sporadic success—

living a ―vegetarian‖ lifestyle, knowing that in time she and Jasper would end up with the Cullen family.

In 1948, Alice went to the small diner in Philadelphia where she knew she and Jasper were destined to meet. Though her greeting was characteristically cryptic, Jasper‘s ability to feel the emotions of those around him allowed him to appreciate the magnitude of the occasion. Alice was already in love; Jasper quickly learned to reciprocate.

To please Alice, Jasper began practicing a ―vegetarian‖ lifestyle as well. By 1950, when they joined the Cullens, Alice was able to control her thirst as well as the rest of the family did.

Jasper continues to have more difficulty with self-restraint than the others. Alice and Jasper were married sometime after joining the Cullen family.

Alice loves all of her adopted family, but has a special bond with Edward. Thanks to his mind-reading abilities, he is the only one who truly understands what it is like to live with constant visions of the future.



— Jasper, on Alice (Eclipse, Chapter 13)


“You do smell nice, I never noticed before.” Twilight, Chapter 15

“It sounded like you were having Bella for lunch, and we came to see if you would share.” Twilight, Chapter 16

“Do you think any of us want to look into his eyes for the next hundred years if he loses you?” Twilight, Chapter 20

“I will always tell you the truth.” Twilight, Chapter 20

“Edward, you have to do it.” Twilight, Chapter 23

“Would you like to explain to me how you‟re alive?” New Moon, Chapter 17

“Honestly, I think it‟s all gotten beyond ridiculous. I‟m debating whether to just change you myself.” New Moon, Chapter 19

“How strongly are you opposed to grand theft auto?” New Moon, Chapter 19

“I think she‟s having hysterics. Maybe you should slap her.” New Moon, Chapter 22

“Who invited the werewolf?” Eclipse, Chapter 17

“Please, Bella, please — if you really love me… Please let me do your wedding.” Eclipse, Chapter 21

“No one dressed by me ever looks like an idiot.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 1

“Bella gets in the way. She‟s all wrapped around it, so she‟s… blurry. Like bad reception on a TV — like trying to focus your eyes on those fuzzy people jerking around on the screen.”

Breaking Dawn, Chapter 14

“Esme, give her a few pointers on acting human.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 25

NAME: Jasper Whitlock Hale




PLACE OF ORIGIN: Houston, Texas

HAIR COLOR: Honey blond

EYE COLOR: Brown (human); gold/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 6‘3‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Jasper is tall with a medium build, and his hair falls to just above his collar. He has many scars from years of dealing with newborn vampires, but these scars are easily visible only to others with supernaturally good eyesight.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: Jasper has the ability to both feel and manipulate the emotions of those around him.

EDUCATION/OCCUPATION: He has attended high school and college several times.

He has degrees in philosophy and history.

HOBBIES: He is a natural scholar and an avid reader. He has a shrewd mind for both business and battle tactics.

VEHICLE: Jasper has the silver Ducati motorcycle given to him by Edward.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: He is married to Alice Cullen. He considers Carlisle and Esme Cullen to be his parents; Edward Cullen, Rosalie Hale, and Emmett Cullen to be his siblings; Bella Cullen to be his sister-in-law; and Renesmee Cullen to be his niece. He also feels brotherly affection for nomadic vampires Peter and Charlotte.


Jasper Whitlock grew up in Houston, Texas. When he was almost seventeen, he lied about his age and volunteered to join the Confederate Army. He rose quickly through the ranks, being promoted over older, more experienced men. People thought of Jasper as charismatic. This was likely due in part to early traces of the psychic ability Jasper would develop after his transformation. Even as a human, Jasper had a gift for empathizing with and influencing the emotions of those around him.

By the time the Battle of Galveston began, Jasper was the youngest major in the Confederate army. After leading a group of refugees from Galveston to Houston, he encountered three extraordinarily beautiful women — Maria, Nettie, and Lucy. Maria — a vampire and head of her coven — decided to transform Jasper into a vampire for the newborn army she was creating.



— Jasper (Eclipse, Chapter 13)

Maria chose her newborns more carefully than was usual. She‘d chosen Jasper first because of his rank — which meant he‘d had success in a military system — and second because of that charismatic quality that had always drawn other humans to him. Jasper was naturally gifted as a warrior and a leader. His ability to control the emotional environment around him, although not yet fully developed, made Maria‘s army more effective.

A bond formed between Jasper and Maria. She came to depend on him more and more and grew quite fond of him. For Jasper, Maria‘s army was the only vampire life he had known, and he had no idea anything else was possible for him.

One of Jasper‘s regular tasks was to execute members of the coven who had outlived their newborn strength and developed no other skills that made them valuable to the army.

Eventually he had help in this task from Peter, another former newborn who had proved himself worthy of being kept around. Jasper liked Peter for his oddly civilized nature. They became friends.

One night as he and Peter were carrying out the grim task of dispatching age-weakened newborns, Jasper could feel the unusually difficult emotional toll it was taking on his friend.

When Jasper called out a newborn named Charlotte, Peter suddenly erupted in fear and fury. He yelled for Charlotte to run, then bolted after her. Jasper could easily have caught them, but he chose not to.

As the years passed, Jasper became depressed, tired of always being surrounded by the devastating emotions of those he killed. Maria was not pleased with this alteration. He began to notice a change in her emotions around him; sometimes she was fearful, sometimes malicious.

He knew Maria was thinking about getting rid of him, and Jasper began planning how he would destroy her first.

At this critical moment, Peter came back to find Jasper. He told Jasper of an alternative he had never imagined: Peter and Charlotte had been living peacefully in the North for the last five years, meeting several other covens that coexisted amicably. Jasper left with Peter immediately.

He traveled with Peter and Charlotte for a few years, but even in the more peaceful North, his depression didn‘t lift. Though he was killing only humans now, he was still subject to their emotions as they died.

Jasper‘s misery stayed with him, and eventually he left Peter and Charlotte. He tried to kill less often, but the thirst always grew overwhelming.

When Alice held out her hand, he took it. And he felt an unfamiliar emotion: hope.

In 1948, Jasper encountered Alice. She approached Jasper as if they were close friends and told him he‘d kept her waiting a long time. Jasper was puzzled and wary, but Alice‘s joyful emotions impacted him greatly. When Alice held out her hand, he took it. And he felt an unfamiliar emotion: hope.

Alice explained her vision of the Cullens, and she described the lifestyle of Carlisle and his family. Jasper found it all hard to believe, but he and Alice set off to find them. Once they did, Alice and Jasper were quickly welcomed into the family. Jasper started using the last name Hale because he and Rosalie looked related, and people assumed they were siblings. It made sense to go along with what humans already seemed inclined to believe. At Carlisle‘s suggestion, Alice and Jasper were married shortly after joining the Cullens.

Jasper became fond of the members of his new family but never developed the deep bonds with them that Alice did. Jasper chose to live with the Cullens in order to stay with Alice, and because the ―vegetarian‖ lifestyle, though exceptionally difficult for him, freed him from the negative emotions that had so depressed him.


“I can feel what you‟re feeling now — and you are worth it.” Twilight, Chapter 19

“You held out your hand, and I took it without stopping to make sense of what I was doing. For the first time in almost a century, I felt hope.” Eclipse, Chapter 13

“I‟ve never seen a newborn do that — stop an emotion in its tracks that way. You were upset, but when you saw our concern, you reined it in, regained power over yourself.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 20

NAME: Isabella Marie Swan Cullen; preferred name: Bella DATE OF BIRTH: September 13, 1987

DATE OF TRANSFORMATION: September 11, 2006, at age 18


PLACE OF ORIGIN: Forks, Washington


EYE COLOR: Brown (human); red (newborn vampire), which will change to gold/black HEIGHT: 5‘4‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Bella‘s dark brown hair is long, thick, and straight. She has a wide forehead with a widow‘s peak, and a narrow jaw with a pointed chin. Her eyes are large and widely spaced, her cheekbones prominent, her nose thin. Her lips are out of proportion, a bit too full for her slim jawline. Her eyebrows are darker than her hair and are straighter than they are arched. She‘s slender but not muscular. As a human, Bella was very fair-skinned, with chocolate-brown eyes. As a vampire, she is even paler, and her eyes are bright red. They will change to gold/black as her human blood leaves her system. Bella‘s features were heightened and perfected by her transformation.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: Her mind is impenetrable; no one can read her thoughts unless she allows it. She can shield herself from all types of psychic attacks and learns to shield those around her.

EDUCATION/OCCUPATION: She is a graduate of Forks High School. As a human, she held a part-time job at Newton‘s Olympic Outfitters.

HOBBIES: Bella enjoys reading, especially the classics, and listening to music.

VEHICLES: Red 1953 Chevy pickup truck, a 1960s Honda motorcycle, a 2006

Mercedes Guardian, a red Ferrari F430

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: She is married to Edward Cullen, and Renesmee Cullen is her daughter. Her father is Charlie Swan. Her mother, Renée, is married to Phil Dwyer, Bella‘s stepfather. Bella views Carlisle and Esme Cullen as her father- and motherin-law, and Alice Cullen, Rosalie Hale, Emmett Cullen, and Jasper Hale as her sisters- and brothers-in-law.


Isabella ―Bella‖ Swan was born in Forks, Washington. Her parents, Renée and Charlie, divorced when she was still a baby. Bella lived with her mother, growing up mainly in Riverside, California, and Phoenix, Arizona. Up until 2002, Bella visited her father in Forks for a month every summer. The climate in Forks was unpleasant to Bella, though, and when she was old enough, she insisted that Charlie meet her in California for a few weeks in the summer instead.

―It was a sweet, kind of tender moment. But there was this dark side to it because he was also admitting how much he had wanted to kill her from the first day he met her.‖


Bella didn‘t fit in with her peers in California or Arizona. She had the feeling of being a little out of sync with everyone — even the person she was closest to, her mother. Renée was a very extroverted, impractical, and absentminded mother who liked to dabble in a multitude of hobbies; from necessity, Bella turned out quite the opposite. At an early age she took over most of the household responsibilities. When not being the adult, she preferred quiet pastimes like reading, in part because she was extraordinarily clumsy. Her naturally responsible nature carried over into her schoolwork, where Bella usually received A‘s. Her plan for the future was to get a degree in education and teach, like her mother. Renée‘s career was the one thing Bella truly respected about her mother. However, she intended to teach at the high school level.






— Bella, on wearing her wedding dress (Breaking Dawn, Chapter 4) When Renée fell in love with and married minor-league baseball player Phil Dwyer, Bella chose to move in with her father in Forks so Renée could go on the road with her new husband during baseball season. Bella arrived in Forks in January 2005 to finish high school in the town where she was born. On her first day at Forks High School, she met Edward Cullen.


“About three things I was absolutely positive. First, Edward was a vampire. Second, there was part of him — and I didn‟t know how potent that part might be — that thirsted for my blood. And third, I was unconditionally and irrevocably in love with him.” Twilight, Chapter 9

“I don‟t speak Car and Driver .” Twilight, Chapter 11

“You said that Rosalie and Emmett will get married soon…. Is that… marriage… the same as it is for humans?” Twilight, Chapter 14

“Well, it‟s no irritable grizzly…. ” Twilight, Chapter 15

Rosalie is jealous of me ?” Twilight, Chapter 15

“I‟m betting on Alice.” Twilight, Chapter 24

“Oh, I‟m with the vampires, of course.” Twilight, Epilogue

“Which is tempting you more, my blood or my body?” New Moon, Chapter 2

“Nothing. I just hadn‟t realized before. Did you know, you‟re sort of beautiful?” New Moon, Chapter 8

“Could you… well, try to not be a… werewolf?” New Moon, Chapter 13

“My mortality. I‟m putting it to a vote.” New Moon, Chapter 23

“I would want… Carlisle not to have to do it. I would want you to change me.” New Moon, Chapter 24

“Am I the only one who has to get old ? I get older every stinking day!” Eclipse, Chapter 5

“We‟re a bit sensitive to blood around here. I‟m sure you can understand that.” Eclipse, Chapter 10

“I punched a werewolf in the face.” Eclipse, Chapter 15

“Show me the damn ring, Edward.” Eclipse, Chapter 20

“Kiss me, Jacob. Kiss me, and then come back.” Eclipse, Chapter 23

“Edward, I know who I can‟t live without.” Eclipse, Chapter 27

“It‟s a good thing you‟re bulletproof. I‟m going to need that ring. It‟s time to tell Charlie.” Eclipse, Chapter 27

“Does this screw my total? Or do we start counting after I‟m a vampire?” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 13

“It feels… complete when you‟re here, Jacob. Like all my family is together.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 15

“Huh. I can see what everyone‟s been going on about. You stink, Jacob.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 22

“You nicknamed my daughter after the Loch Ness Monster ?” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 22

“We‟re going to tell her I spent hours in there playing dress-up. We‟re going to lie .”

Breaking Dawn, Chapter 24

“It‟s over. We‟ve all been sentenced to die.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 28

“I am all over this.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 38

“Now you know. No one‟s ever loved anyone as much as I love you.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 39




— Bella (New Moon, Chapter 1)


“Please tell me just one little theory.”

“Um, well, bitten by a radioactive spider?”

“That‟s not very creative.”

“I‟m sorry, that‟s all I‟ve got.”

“You‟re not even close.”

“No spiders?”


“And no radioactivity?”



“Kryptonite doesn‟t bother me, either.” Twilight, Chapter 5

“I smelled the blood.”

“People can‟t smell blood.”

“Well, I can— that‟s what makes me sick. It smells like rust… and salt…. What?”

“It‟s nothing.” Twilight, Chapter 5




— Bella, on her bedroom (Twilight, Chapter 1)

“I dazzle people?”

“You haven‟t noticed? Do you think everybody gets their way so easily?”

“Do I dazzle you ?”

“Frequently.” Twilight, Chapter 8

“How old are you?”


“And how long have you been seventeen?”

“A while.” Twilight, Chapter 9

“Don‟t laugh — but how can you come out during the daytime?”


“Burned by the sun?”


“Sleeping in coffins?”

“Myth. I can‟t sleep.”

“At all?”

“Never.” Twilight, Chapter 9

“And so the lion fell in love with the lamb…. ”

“What a stupid lamb.”

“What a sick, masochistic lion.” Twilight, Chapter 13

NAME: Renesmee Carlie Cullen; nickname: Nessie

DATE OF BIRTH: September 11, 2006

DATE OF TRANSFORMATION: Born a vampire/human hybrid PLACE OF ORIGIN: Forks, Washington



HEIGHT: 3‘5‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Renesmee has fair skin, pink cheeks, dimples, and bronze-colored ringlets.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: She can show people her thoughts by touching their skin. So far, no one has been able to block her talent.

EDUCATION/OCCUPATION: She is taught at home by her parents, extended family, and friends.

HOBBIES: She likes to hunt with Jacob, read, study, and spend time with her parents and the other members of the Cullen family.

VEHICLE: She doesn‘t have a vehicle yet.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: She is the natural daughter of Edward and Bella Cullen. Charlie Swan and Renée Dwyer are her natural grandparents. Carlisle and Esme Cullen are her adoptive grandparents through their relationship to Edward. She thinks of Rosalie Hale and Alice Cullen as her aunts, and of Jasper Hale and Emmett Cullen as her uncles. Jacob

Black has imprinted on her.



Mentally, she learns with vampire speed and retains with vampire perfection.


Renesmee has both vampire and human characteristics. She has inherited many physical gifts from her vampire heritage; her teeth are nearly as strong as vampire teeth, her skin is almost as durable as vampire skin, and her muscles perform with supernatural strength, though not quite at vampire level. Mentally, she learns with vampire speed and retains with vampire perfection.

Due to her human side, she has a beating heart and a functioning circulatory system. She also can eat human food and sleep. She maintains a body temperature greater than that of a normal human, at around 105 degrees Fahrenheit. From conception, she has grown at a greatly accelerated rate. It is expected that she, like other hybrids, will stop growing when her body reaches its adult size. Her physical growth is greatly outstripped by her mental development.


“But I can show you more than I can tell you.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 30

“I‟m not dangerous at all…. I love humans. And wolf-people like my Jacob.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 30

“Momma, you‟re special.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 31

“I love you too, Momma. We‟ll always be together.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 35

The Cullen Home





— Bella, on her first impressions of the Cullen home (Twilight, Chapter 15) The Cullens‘ house in Forks is more than a hundred years old. Painstakingly restored by Esme, it is painted white, is three stories tall, and features a deep porch that wraps around the front of the house. The back, south-facing wall is three stories of glass.

The inside of the first story is open and bright, with few internal walls. To the left of the front door is a wide central staircase. To the right is a raised area with a grand piano in the center. Also to the right are a dining room and kitchen, but these are more for show than for actual use. Behind the stairs is the office of C.E.E. Inc., the Cullens‘ personal company, where they manage all of their business dealings.

At the top of the staircase on the second floor is the room that Rosalie and Emmett share.

Moving around the central stairs clockwise, first comes Jasper‘s study, then Alice and Jasper‘s room, with an attached closet that is larger than the room itself. Carlisle‘s office is next, with an area inside for Esme‘s study and Carlisle‘s personal library. During Bella‘s pregnancy, the library was converted into a combination exam and delivery room.

The room that Carlisle and Esme share is at the top of the staircase on the third floor.

Edward‘s room is also on this floor, facing south. The remainder of the third floor is called the library and is used for any technically illegal activity, such as forging birth certificates and hacking into computer systems, which the Cullens must do in order to maintain the various identities needed to live unnoticed in human society.

The Volturi Coven

The equivalent of royalty in the vampire world, the Volturi coven consists of five core members: Aro; Caius; Marcus; Aro‘s wife, Sulpicia; and Cauis‘s wife, Athenodora. Marcus‘s wife (and Aro‘s sister), Didyme, was also a member of the Volturi before she died.

The Volturi reside in their city — Volterra, Italy — which they have secretly controlled for three thousand years, since the time of the Etruscans. They prefer to stay indoors, out of sight of humans, using other vampires as subordinates to serve their coven. Occasionally, they also use human minions.

Between 400 and 500 A.D., the Volturi launched an offensive against the most powerful coven in the world, the Romanians. Rather than simply attack the Romanians, the Volturi first cleverly demanded that the Romanians conform to laws that the Volturi claimed benefited all vampirekind. When the Romanians scornfully refused, the Volturi were able to categorize (and publicize) their strike as a move for the good of all vampires, rather than a standard territory dispute.

The main portion of the war lasted for nearly a century and — due to the fact that there are still two remaining survivors of the original Romanian coven — was never officially concluded.

In the end, the Volturi were able to defeat the Romanians because of Aro‘s intentional creation of talented vampires. The Romanians had created vampires for their empire with less foresight, and their physical skills were not a match in the long term for Aro‘s psychically gifted choices.

Aro called his soldiers ―the Volturi guard,‖ making it clear that they were subservient to the actual coven of five.

After the Volturi had defeated the greater part of the Romanian coven, they began spreading their doctrine throughout the world. Their basic operating premise was that keeping the existence of vampires a secret was beneficial to all; anyone who would not keep this secret was an enemy to the vampire public.

While many vampires questioned the validity of this premise at the time (after all, what could a human do to a vampire, despite any knowledge that human might have), none of them wanted to take on the Volturi fresh off their victory over the Romanians. As time passed, more vampires were born into a world where the Volturi existed as benevolent governors, and slowly the Volturi became accepted by their own positive, self-created definition. Many of these new vampires were created by the Volturi themselves, indoctrinated, and then let loose into the world.

This was the first incarnation of the Volturi‘s human recruitment program; they found humans who sought the power and immortality of vampire lore and introduced them into that world with a set of preconceived ideas about vampire society — ideas that those new vampires eventually introduced to their own ―offspring‖ and other covens they came in contact with. After the Volturi became an accepted force, they continued with the human recruitment on a smaller scale; they utilized humans hopeful of becoming vampires as servants in order to create a human façade for their ancestral home. The majority of these humans were eventually killed for their blood, and only those with potential for useful psychic talents were transformed.

―There aren‘t very many bad guys in my novels. Even the bad guys usually have a pretty good reason for the way they are, and some of them come around in the end. I don‘t see the world as full of negatives.‖ —Stephenie As time passed, the Volturi became more and more powerful as Aro d iscovered more humans and vampires with formidable gifts and added them to his ―collection.‖ In the twentieth century, the advances in human weapons technology came to be viewed by many vampires as a validation of the Volturi‘s now inspired-seeming laws.

The present-day Volturi guard stands at nine permanent members and ten to twelve additional transitory members. The foremost members are Jane and Alec, twins changed around 800 A.D. Jane and Alec had psychic abilities as humans that were greatly intensified in their vampire forms. After their inclusion, the Volturi‘s power became virtually unassailable.

Rank in the guard is decided by power; the guard members who are merely physically strong do not rank as high as those with extra abilities. Rank is marked by the color of the individual‘s cloak; the darker the cloak, the higher the vampire‘s rank. Jane and Alec wear the darkest cloak, outside of the true black of the actual coven members. The only guard who wears a darker cloak is Chelsea.

If a human were to discover the truth about vampires and remain silent, it is probable that the Volturi would never know.

Generally, the Volturi do not keep the vampires of the world under close supervision. If a human were to discover the truth about vampires and remain silent, it is probable that the Volturi would never know and would leave the vampire responsible — and the human who possessed the newfound information — alone. The Volturi are concerned only with breaches that lead to widespread awareness in the human world. Certain news stories, books, or movies about vampires occasionally pique the interest of the Volturi. Members of the guard then trace the information to its source, assess the threat, and silence it if need be.

Many vampires around the world aspire to be accepted into the Volturi, as vampires are drawn to power. However, most of them have nothing to offer the Volturi that the Volturi don‘t already have. Vampires with powerful skills unmatched in the Volturi‘s current coven are invited to take the place of older, less skilled vampires. Depending on the circumstances, a demoted vampire might go off on his or her own, join another coven, or be executed.




— Bella, on her arrival in the city of Volterra (New Moon, Chapter 19)



DATE OF BIRTH: Around 1300 B.C.





EYE COLOR: Red/black, with an overlying milky film (vampire) HEIGHT: 5‘10‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Aro has an average build and is incredibly graceful in his movements. He has shoulder-length jet-black hair and perfect features. His skin is translucent white, slightly resembling the casing of an onion.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: When he touches someone, he can read every thought the person has ever had.

EDUCATION/OCCUPATION: He is one of the three leaders of the Volturi coven, along with Caius and Marcus. He usually acts as the Volturi spokesperson.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: His mate is Sulpicia. His closest coven members are Caius, Marcus, and Athenodora. His natural sister, Didyme, is deceased. He and the other original Volturi are served by members of the Volturi guard.


Aro was born in Greece just after 1300 B.C. All his life, he was ambitious; power was always his primary goal. It was in the pursuit of this goal that he was transformed into a vampire in his mid-twenties. During the first century of his vampire life, he joined forces with two other vampires, Marcus and Caius, and transformed two humans into vampires: his sister, Didyme; and his future wife, Sulpicia. Aro formed this coven (which also included Caius‘s wife, Athenodora) in order to further his ruling ambition, seeking strength in numbers to augment his own powerful mind-reading talent. Originally, Aro, Caius, and Marcus agreed to rule jointly, but Aro was always the decision-making force behind the threesome. It was Aro who devised the plan on which the Volturi ultimately founded their reign over the vampire world: the concept of vampire laws of mutual convenience. Over time, Marcus lost interest in the coven due to personal tragedy, and Caius grew obsessed with solely the punitive side of governing. Aro handled every other aspect of the Volturi rule.

Aro was the last of the coven to form a romantic attachment.

Aro was the last of the coven to form a romantic attachment. After Marcus and Didyme fell in love, Aro felt that the balance of power had swung away from him (before this, he would have counted his sister an infallible ally; now he assumed she would side with Marcus in any difference of opinion in the coven). Aro decided in advance that he would rather choose a human and create a mate than look for his match in another vampire, who might have ties to her own creator or other relationships that would complicate his plans. He had a certain type of woman in mind, and he found what he was looking for in Sulpicia: a lovely young orphan with few ties to her human community. He courted her successfully, and she agreed to be transformed into a vampire and join Aro as his wife. She remains totally devoted and loyal to Aro.

Aro had chosen to transform his sister because he hoped she might have a gift similar to his own powerful mind-reading gift. He was disappointed in this, and later disposed of her when she got in the way of his plans by distracting Marcus — her mate — from Aro‘s goals. One unintended consequence of this action was the near total debilitation of Marcus by the loss of his mate. Aro and Caius were both disturbed to realize that they were vulnerable to a similar devastation; they immediately sought safeguards for their own wives. Over time, as Aro and Caius increased security in every way they could devise, Sulpicia and Athenodora became virtual prisoners in their home. Part of their confinement, however, included a vampire talented at making them feel content. With Corin as part of their personal guard, Sulpicia and Athenodora never objected to their incarceration.

He created the Volturi guard out of gifted vampires who shared his desire for authority.

Despite his failure with Didyme, Aro never stopped seeking out talented vampires who could add to his power. He created the Volturi guard out of gifted vampires who shared his desire for authority. The guard were never fully part of the coven or the ruling body, but they gained prestige and protection by joining them in a subordinate position. After Aro acquired Chelsea (then Charmion) — who had the ability to bind people to one another and break any bonds that already existed — he was able to influence vampires to join the guard who would not otherwise have been motivated by power or prestige.

Aro made one of his best discoveries around 800 A.D.: the young twins Jane and Alec.

Having already created a prohibition against immortal children, Aro left the talented humans to grow up in their native village, planning to transform them when they reached adulthood.

Unfortunately, Jane‘s and Alec‘s psychic gifts were very pronounced for mere humans, and drew the notice of the other humans around them. Though still children, Jane and Alec were condemned as witches and burned at the stake. Aro arrived immediately upon hearing the news and found them still alive, but barely. He freed them and set the transformation in motion at once. Then, having revealed his true nature in a rather dramatic way, he was compelled to destroy the entire village in order to obey his own law. He left no witnesses, and brought home his two most valuable assets.




— Bella, on Aro‘s gift (Breaking Dawn, Chapter 27) Just because a human or a vampire has a special talent doesn‘t guarantee that Aro will add him or her to the coven. Aro seeks out talents that will make him more powerful, especially on the battlefield. For example, in Aro‘s mind, Alice Cullen‘s ability to see into the future — a skill he‘s never had access to — is far more useful than Jasper Hale‘s ability to manipulate emotions, as he already has Chelsea and Corin, whose gifts are similar to Jasper‘s, but more suited to Aro‘s purposes. Aro is deliberate and patient by nature. When he locates a desirable new talent, such as Alice‘s, he plans carefully the best way to acquire it. He doesn‘t make a move if he believes that doing so might destroy that talent. Instead, he bides his time and explores other avenues toward his goal. For example, he might convert human psychics in the hope of duplicating the talent. If a vampire‘s talent is no longer needed — if Aro finds a vampire with a superior version of the same talent or, as in the case of Didyme, one vampire‘s presence interferes with another vampire‘s needed talent — Aro will restructure the guard. Sometimes, as with Didyme, he will do so by execution. However, Aro will allow an amicable separation when he sees no possible threat from releasing the talent, or if he thinks he might need access to that gift in the future but has no way to hold on to it now. This was the case with Eleazar.

Occasionally, vampires approach the Volturi directly to seek a position in the coven.

Usually, Aro already has a better version of the gift or skill being offered, but if not, the applicant is gladly accepted. Vampires who are not satisfactory are allowed to leave in peace.

Other vampires visit the Volturi simply out of curiosity. Aro encourages such pilgrimages, as it gives him a chance to read their minds. More than just a tactical advantage or a chance to locate other talented vampires, these readings provide Aro with much-needed entertainment throughout the millennia. Aro is endlessly interested in any kind of curiosity.





— Bella, on Aro‘s gift (Breaking Dawn, Chapter 27) When Carlisle Cullen arrived in Volterra in the early 1700s, Aro was impressed and intrigued by Carlisle‘s ―vegetarian‖ philosophy. Aro tried to convince Carlisle that drinking human blood was natural. He continually teased, prodded, and tested Carlisle (for example, by having a member of the guard deliver a profusely bleeding human body to the library where Carlisle was studying, just to see what Carlisle would do).

Aro was torn between wanting Carlisle to stay strong — the limits of Carlisle‘s resolve fascinated him — and wanting him to surrender to his true nature. After about two decades, Carlisle left the Volturi coven on good terms to travel to America. Before he left, his visit with the Volturi was captured in a painting by Francesco Solimena, an Italian painter who favored the Baroque style. Aro intended to drop in on Carlisle later in his life, in four or five hundred years, to see how things had turned out for him.


“I love a happy ending. They are so rare.” New Moon, Chapter 21

“But still— la tua cantante ! What a waste!” New Moon, Chapter 21

“I certainly never thought to see Carlisle bested for self-control of all things, but you put him to shame.” New Moon, Chapter 21

“Besides, I‟m so terribly curious to see how Bella turns out!” New Moon, Chapter 21

“I doubt whether any two among gods or mortals have ever seen quite so clearly.”

Breaking Dawn, Chapter 36

“Oh well, we‟re all together now! Isn‟t it lovely?” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 37


NAME: Caius

DATE OF BIRTH: Sometime before 1300 B.C.





EYE COLOR: Red/black, with an overlying milky film (vampire) HEIGHT: 5‘9‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Caius has an average build and is extremely graceful; he almost appears to be floating when he moves. He has shoulder-length snow-white hair. His white skin is translucent and looks insubstantial.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: He does not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

EDUCATION/OCCUPATION: He is one of the three leaders of the Volturi coven, along with Aro and Marcus.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: Caius‘s mate is Athenodora. His closest coven members are Aro, Marcus, and Sulpicia. He and the other original Volturi are served by members of the Volturi guard.

Caius was immediately attracted to the idea of joining forces with the gifted vampires.


Caius was born at least a century before Aro, and was transformed into a vampire when he was in his late forties. Before he met Aro, he‘d run afoul of the Romanian coven. Caius escaped with his life but developed a great hatred for the powerful Romanians. He met a female vampire named Athenodora and they began to travel together as a bonded pair. Caius met Aro for the first time when Aro was only a few years into his vampire life. Young though he was, Aro was already formulating his plan to dominate the vampire world. He had formed a coven with another talented vampire, Marcus. Caius was immediately attracted to the idea of joining forces with the gifted vampires. He didn‘t like feeling weak, knowing that the Romanians — or anyone stronger than him — would be able to destroy him at will. He wanted to be powerful and strong as much as Aro did. Though Caius had no psychic gift, Aro was drawn to Caius‘s ambition and passionate capacity to hate; he saw a great potential for manipulation in what could be both a weakness and a strength.

Caius and Athenodora doubled Aro‘s numbers, and then they were quickly joined by Aro‘s sister, Didyme, and later Aro‘s romantic interest, Sulpicia. Aro and Caius worried about diluting their power further, and from then on brought vampires into the coven as subordinates only.

Aro and Caius were in agreement again after Didyme‘s death devastated Marcus: The wives must be protected at all costs. Thanks to the unchanging nature of the vampire, Caius is still as devoted to Athenodora as he was when they first fell in love. He is able to reconcile this love with her prisonlike circumstances by telling himself that it is the only way to protect her.

Caius was not as patient as Aro, but was willing to follow Aro‘s long-term plan because he could see that doing so gave him a better chance of getting what he wanted than seeking it head-on would. He supported Aro‘s cause, enforced vampire discretion, because it brought him to his ultimate goal: war against the Romanian coven.

After the Romanians were mostly destroyed, Caius was satisfied to spend his time punishing offenders of Aro‘s law, while leaving the rest of the decision-making to Aro. Caius wouldn‘t have been quite as satisfied without Chelsea‘s influence, but Aro made sure that she kept him tightly bound to the coven.

After the Romanians were all but extinct, Caius kept himself occupied with other crusades. One was his campaign to wipe out the werewolf population. Similar to his response to the Romanians, Caius had once felt vulnerable and powerless during an attack by a werewolf.

His characteristic reaction was to attempt to destroy the entire species that had made him feel helpless. (The werewolves he hunted to near extinction are also known as the Children of the Moon. They are not related to the Quileute wolves.)

Caius led most of the hunting parties and always participated in the destruction of offenders.

Another crusade was the offensive against the immortal children. Caius led most of the hunting parties and always participated in the destruction of offenders. He also oversaw the clean-up after the Southern Wars, making sure the newborn armies and their creators were utterly annihilated. Caius is always at the head of any Volturi punishing expedition, leaving Aro free for more important projects.


“And we will visit you as well. To be sure that you follow through on your side. Were I you, I would not delay too long. We do not offer second chances.” New Moon, Chapter 21

Now she has taken full responsibility for her actions.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 37


NAME: Marcus

DATE OF BIRTH: Around 1350 B.C.





EYE COLOR: Red/black, with an overlying milky film (vampire) HEIGHT: 6‘0‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Marcus has an average build and, like Aro and Caius, is incredibly graceful in his movements. His black hair is shoulder length, and his white skin is translucent, with a papery texture.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: He can see the relationships or connections people have to one another. For example, in a group situation he can easily pick out the leader, or sense the strength of the bond between mates or friends. He can also see where those bonds are weak.

EDUCATION/OCCUPATION: He is one of the three leaders of the Volturi coven, along with Aro and Caius.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: His mate, Didyme, died long ago. His closest coven members are Aro, Caius, Sulpicia, and Athenodora. He and the other original Volturi are served by members of the Volturi guard.


Marcus is physically the youngest of the Volturi. He was transformed into a vampire before he was twenty. Aro found Marcus soon after his own transformation. Marcus was a solitary nomad at the time, but he quickly grew fond of enthusiastic young Aro. Aro was the first friend Marcus had as a vampire. When Aro wanted to form a coven with Caius and Athenodora, Marcus was hesitant. He didn‘t trust the very intense and bitter newcomer, but Aro talked him into the partnership. With his gift, Marcus could see the growing ties between Aro and Caius, but he never truly understood what Aro saw in Caius.

Marcus‘s life changed dramatically when Aro brought home his newly turned younger sister, Didyme, along with the first members of the guard — vampires who were drawn to Didyme‘s aura of happiness. None of these early subordinates lasted more than a few centuries; they were still experimental at that point. Didyme‘s gift had always been with her, though subtler during her human years, and so she was used to many suitors. She did not take these suitors seriously; her true allegiance was to her brother. After her wild newborn years were over, however, she came to admire Marcus greatly. They fell in love with the strongest romantic bond of any of the Volturi, as Marcus was in a position to know.

They were so happy together that soon Aro‘s ambition to dominate the vampire world became increasingly less important to them. After a few centuries, Marcus and Didyme discussed leaving the Volturi to live on their own. Aro, having read both their thoughts, knew these plans. He wasn‘t pleased, but he pretended to give his blessing.

Marcus‘s power was much more valuable to Aro than was Didyme‘s. On the battlefield, Marcus could easily determine the leader and key members of the opposition by the bonds between them and the other fighters. He could tell which person would die for another, which would turn traitor given incentive. In a diplomatic situation, Marcus could see how foreign vampires felt about the Volturi if they would not allow contact with Aro. Within the coven, Marcus could see if someone‘s loyalty was wavering, or if someone‘s feelings for another had become stronger than their bond to the coven. He was also quite dangerous in a fight — a skill Didyme did not share.

Aro waited for an opportunity, and when he knew he would not be caught, he murdered his sister, despite the fact that he truly loved her. Aro‘s grief was genuine, and Marcus never found out that he was responsible. Aro seemed to do everything in his power to discover the culprit, but of course all of his efforts, combined with those of Marcus and Caius, came to nothing. Once he‘d given up hope of vengeance, Marcus became incapacitated by grief. He lost interest in the coven and began to consider suicide. Aro had sacrificed his beloved sister in order to keep Marcus‘s valuable gift in his coven, and he was aghast at the possibility of losing Marcus after all. Aro discovered Chelsea and used her gift to keep Marcus tied to the fortunes of the Volturi; he was unable to abandon the coven, even through suicide. Chelsea‘s gift kept Marcus loyal to Aro, but it was not enough to make him show any enthusiasm for the Volturi. Aro tried to make Marcus more amenable through Corin‘s gift, but Marcus refused to accept her comfort.

He did not want to forget his pain. Corin‘s gift proved more useful with the wives.


ATHENODORA Caius‘s mate

DIDYME The deceased mate of Marcus, and sister of Aro SULPICIA Aro‘s mate

The Volturi Guard


NAME: Alec

DATE OF BIRTH: Prior to 800 A.D.

DATE OF TRANSFORMATION: Exact date unknown; around the age of 12 or 13



HAIR COLOR: Light brown

EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘0‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Alec is taller than his twin sister, Jane, but not by much.

He is boyish in appearance and resembles Jane, although his lips are not as full.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: Alec cuts off all physical senses — sight, touch, hearing, etc.—

from anyone, human or vampire. He is also able to extend his power over a large group of humans or vampires at the same time. His gift manifests as a mist, nearly invisible, that moves slowly away from himself toward his object, blanketing all the space in between. He is able to project this mist several hundred meters. He can also control who his mist affects, allowing the other Volturi soldiers to kill his senseless victims easily.

EDUCATION/OCCUPATION: He is a member of the Volturi guard.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: Alec‘s twin sister, Jane, is also a member of the Volturi guard. Guard members show the Volturi the loyalty they would family.


Alec was born in England around 800 A.D., son of an Anglo-Saxon woman and a Frankish soldier. He was born a few minutes after his fraternal twin sister, Jane. Both Alec and Jane had strong psychic abilities that were evident even in their human state. Aro was made aware of Alec and his sister through the thoughts of a visiting nomad. Aro visited the twins but decided they were too young to transform immediately (the Volturi had already instated its rules about immortal children). Aro left them in the care of their parents, planning to return in a few years. Though the twins‘ gifts were obvious to anyone paying attention, Aro observed no menace toward them. They were only toddlers at the time, however, and Aro did not foresee how public opinion toward them would change as they grew. If he‘d had any suspicion of the villagers‘ eventual reaction to them, he would have taken them back to Volterra and raised them himself.

Eventually, the superstitious locals found the twins too frightening to endure.

Alec and Jane grew older. As they got bigger, the villagers found their unsettling natures more and more disturbing. Their talents had not taken a focused shape at that point, but bad things tended to happen to people who were unkind to the twins or their family, and good luck followed those who were friendly to them. Eventually, the superstitious locals found the twins too frightening to endure. They were accused as witches and condemned to be burned at the stake. Aro was apprised of the situation by a nomad who knew of Aro‘s interest in the twins. Aro hurried to the village, arriving just in time to interrupt the execution.

The horrible pain of burning affected both of the twins deeply, and shaped the way their psychic gifts manifested themselves after the transformation. As Alec burned, his entire focus was on escaping the pain. As a vampire, this focus translated into an ability to totally anesthetize any human or vampire. Because he could project this sensory deprivation over many targets at the same time, he became the single most valuable weapon in Aro‘s arsenal.


“They send you out for one and you come back with two… and a half.” New Moon, Chapter 21


NAME: Chelsea, born Charmion

DATE OF BIRTH: Before 1100 B.C.




HAIR COLOR: Light brown

EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘3‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Chelsea is short, with an hourglass figure.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: Chelsea can influence the emotional ties that people feel toward one another by either strengthening their bonds or breaking them apart.

EDUCATION/OCCUPATION: She is a member of the Volturi guard.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: Her mate is Afton, another member of the Volturi guard. Guard members show the Volturi the loyalty they would family.


Chelsea was born not long after the original Volturi members. She was originally named Charmion, but as she frequently interacts with humans and vampires outside the city of Volterra, she has changed her name a few times over the millennia in order to keep it from attracting attention. She chose the name Chelsea in the 1950s and will use it until it becomes uncommon.

Aro discovered Chelsea in the midst of a very difficult time for the Volturi. He had recently murdered his sister, Didyme, in order to hold on to his talented partner, Marcus.

Unfortunately, after Marcus had exhausted his search for Didyme‘s killer, he became suicidal.

Aro did what he could to keep Marcus from finding a way to end his life, but he could tell he was losing the battle. When he discovered Chelsea, he was quick to utilize her abilities. He had her bind Marcus tightly to Aro so that he couldn‘t disobey Aro‘s wishes. Later Aro added Corin, hoping to help Marcus become more interested in the goals of the Volturi, but that was less effective; Marcus refused to let Corin‘s gift erase his pain.

Chelsea became the linchpin in Aro‘s organization.

Chelsea became the linchpin in Aro‘s organization. Her ability to both make and break emotional ties is the power that keeps the guard unified and the coven functional. She is also able to dissolve the loyalties between coven members, with the exception of a romantically bonded pair; those ties are stronger than her power. The attachments she creates are nearly as strong as a romantic union. It was her ability that kept the powerful twins, Jane and Alec, from ever questioning their subordinate position to Aro and the rest of the coven, and that allowed Aro to recruit many gifted vampires — like Demetri and Heidi — who initially had no interest in the prestige of belonging to the Volturi. Her gift is long lasting; it does not fade immediately when she is not present. It does wear off over a matter of time — decades or centuries — depending on how long a person has been exposed to it before separating from her.

Because of her vital role, Chelsea is the vampire Aro is most dependent on and most vulnerable to.

Because of her vital role, Chelsea is the vampire Aro is most dependent on and most vulnerable to. Knowing this, Aro has a special relationship with Chelsea that is unlike any other among the guard. Chelsea wears the pure black robe of the coven leaders, and she always gets what she wants. For example, her mate, Afton, though not exceptionally skilled, holds a prestigious place with the guard. Chelsea enjoys all the perks of living with the Volturi, plus perfect job security — unless Aro finds someone with a better version of her talent.

Aro is nothing if not cautious, however, and he doesn‘t leave himself vulnerable for long.

Aro made sure that Chelsea was often exposed to Corin‘s gift throughout the centuries; Chelsea is not aware of the true strength of Corin‘s addictive talent, but she would have a very difficult time leaving the Volturi.


NAME: Demetri

DATE OF BIRTH: Around 1000 A.D.





EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 6‘3‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Demetri is tall and lean. His pale skin has a faint olive tone. His wavy, dark hair is shoulder length.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: He is a skilled tracker. He catches the essence of a person‘s mind and then follows it like a scent over any distance.

EDUCATION/OCCUPATION: He is a member of the Volturi guard.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: Guard members show the Volturi the loyalty they would family.


Demetri was originally discovered by the Egyptian coven‘s leader, Amun. Amun worked with Demetri to develop his tracking ability, and the two were very close. At the time, the Volturi had a tracker. However, when Aro heard that Amun had a more talented tracker than his own, he hurried to Egypt and offered Demetri a place with the Volturi. Demetri had no interest in leaving Amun, but Aro had Chelsea dissolve the bonds between the members of that coven, and then tie Demetri to the Volturi. Demetri joined them immediately.

Demetri is a permanent member of the guard and a part of all of the Volturi‘s important missions. Though tracking gifts are more common than any other kind of psychic gift, Demetri is by far the best-known tracker in the vampire world. With the rare exception of strong mental shields, Demetri‘s gift is unstoppable and allows the Volturi to find anyone, anywhere. Demetri can link to a target once he has physically met that person, or he can pick up a person‘s trail from anyone who has met them in the past.


“Nice fishing.” New Moon, Chapter 21


NAME: Felix






EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 6‘7‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Felix is very tall and muscular. His pale skin has a slight olive cast. He has short, cropped black hair.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: He does not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

EDUCATION/OCCUPATION: He is a member of the Volturi guard.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: Guard members show the Volturi the loyalty they would family.


Felix is one of the few members of the Volturi guard with no psychic talent. Instead, he is physically the strongest vampire that the Volturi have encountered. Felix wears the lighter gray cloak of a lesser member of the guard, but he does have a permanent position with them. Felix is a part of most of the Volturi‘s punitive missions. When there are larger threats, he is accompanied by other physically dominant members of the guard, like Santiago, or any of a number of other transitory guard members.


NAME: Heidi

DATE OF BIRTH: Before 1550




HAIR COLOR: Mahogany

EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire), although she often wears blue contacts that make her red eyes appear violet.

HEIGHT: 5‘10‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Heidi is tall and strikingly beautiful.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: She is overwhelmingly physically appealing to men and women, humans and vampires. Resisting her allure is possible but also very difficult, especially if she is trying hard to attract.

EDUCATION/OCCUPATION: She is a member of the Volturi guard.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: Guard members show the Volturi the loyalty they would family.


Heidi was originally changed by a vampire named Hilda, and belonged to her coven for several years. Hilda was later accused of attracting too much notice with her large coven. All but two of the vampires were destroyed: Heidi was considered penitent and so was spared, and the other — Victoria — was able to escape. Thanks to Chelsea, Heidi is totally loyal to the Volturi.

Her primary duty is orchestrating elaborate ploys to bring human victims to Volterra.

Heidi became a key member in the day-to-day existence of the Volturi. Her primary duty is orchestrating elaborate ploys to bring human victims to Volterra for the sustenance of the coven. She is required to bring them from far away, without leaving a trail. Heidi might arrange for a contest where the prize is an all-expenses-paid vacation to Turkey (or another random location), or a job interview for a position with an amazing salary. The victims never hear the word Volterra, and usually are unaware that they are even being taken to Italy. She has more than one jet and other vehicles and props to use in her efforts to attract humans to the Volturi‘s private city. Once an intended victim meets Heidi, it is difficult for him or her to refuse any invitation she extends.


NAME: Jane

DATE OF BIRTH: Prior to 800 A.D.

DATE OF TRANSFORMATION: Exact date unknown; around the age of 12 or 13



HAIR COLOR: Pale brown

EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 4‘8‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: If not for her girlish face and full lips, Jane could be mistaken for a preteen boy. She is quite short, and her childlike voice is high and thin. She usually speaks with an air of apathy or boredom. Despite all this, she has a commanding presence.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: She can cause people to experience excruciating pain that instantly incapacitates them. She can inflict this pain on only one target at a time; she must be able to see her victim to use her gift on him or her.

EDUCATION/OCCUPATION: She is a member of the Volturi guard.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: Her twin brother, Alec, is also a member of the Volturi guard. Guard members show the Volturi the loyalty they would family.


Jane was chosen by Aro while she was still a human child. Aro‘s plan to let Jane and her brother mature with their human family backfired when superstitious locals condemned them as witches and sentenced them to death by fire. Aro arrived barely in time to save Jane and Alec from their accusers. While Alec focused his psychic powers on escaping his own pain, Jane was consumed with the desire to inflict her pain on those who were hurting her. This desire shaped her vampire talent into a very effective weapon.

While Alec — with his ability to use his gift on a great number of targets concurrently — is more advantageous in open battle, Jane‘s talent is more often used. As evidenced during Edward, Alice, and Bella‘s visit to Volterra, Jane‘s talent is frequently utilized to control potentially aggressive vampires. Just having her on hand usually guarantees Aro a polite and compliant audience.

In the field Jane inspires a great deal of fear, which is helpful to the Volturi attack strategy, as well as to their reputation.

In the field Jane inspires a great deal of fear, which is helpful to the Volturi attack strategy, as well as to their reputation. Also, Caius enjoys using her talent to punish vampires before they are executed. Over the centuries, Jane has absorbed some of Caius‘s sadistic enjoyment in the process.


“We‟re not used to being rendered unnecessary. It‟s too bad we missed the fight. It sounds like it would have been entertaining to watch.” Eclipse, Chapter 25

“Caius will be so interested to hear that you‟re still human, Bella. Perhaps he‟ll decide to visit.” Eclipse, Chapter 25


NAME: Renata






EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘0‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Renata is slight in build.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: She can shield herself and others, repelling physical attacks and confusing the attacker and making him forget his purpose.

EDUCATION/OCCUPATION: She is a member of the Volturi guard and Aro‘s personal bodyguard.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: Guard members show the Volturi the loyalty they would family.


Renata was born into an unusual, vampire-friendly family that has produced several vampires over the centuries, including, many years after Renata, a nomad named Makenna.

Renata was changed by her great-uncle Luca (with a few dozen great s added) on her twentieth birthday. She originally intended to help her uncle protect and perpetuate their family line, but Renata was very talented. She quickly caught the attention of the Volturi and was invited to join.

Luca, wanting no trouble with the Volturi — the way he interacted with his human relatives was already a gray area — encouraged her to go.

Thanks to Chelsea, Renata became exceptionally loyal to the Volturi, particularly Aro.

On Aro‘s instructions, Chelsea attached Renata to Aro alone, rather than to all the leading Volturi together. Renata is so tightly bound to Aro that she would rather die than see him harmed. When Aro leaves Volterra, she is always at his side. She is able to repel attackers from herself and anyone in close physical proximity to her. Her gift causes assailants to become confused as they approach her. They find themselves moving in a new direction, with a blurred memory as to what they were trying to accomplish. She is able to push her shield several meters out from herself. She will also shield Caius and Marcus if they are nearby, but her primary concern is to protect Aro.


AFTON: Chelsea‘s mate

Afton has a minor shielding skill, but it is limited by the fact that he cannot project it outside of himself. He has the ability to make himself invisible to attackers, but someone with a strong focus can see through the illusion. A person standing directly behind him can be hidden, too, but this is not a very reliable safeguard. Afton is not gifted enough to earn a place with the Volturi on his own merits; he owes his inclusion to his much more talented mate, Chelsea.

CORIN: A guard

Officially, Corin‘s primary job in the Volturi is to protect the surviving wives, Sulpicia and Athenodora. In reality, she does not protect them so much as soothe them into complacency while other, more physically impressive vampires do the actual job of guarding the wives. The wives are so closely protected that they have become virtual prisoners in Volterra. However, Corin‘s gift keeps them satisfied with life — even happy.

A person can become addicted to the feeling she produces, and be unable to feel well without it.

Corin is able to make anyone feel content in his or her circumstances. There is a druglike side effect to her skill, however. A person can become addicted to the feeling she produces, and be unable to feel well without it. Aro has been careful not to expose himself too greatly to Corin, while using Chelsea to keep her tied to the coven. Marcus has always refused to let her relieve his never-easing pain over Didyme‘s death. Caius, on the other hand, frequently uses Corin‘s gift to alleviate his boredom between battles and punishing expeditions.


Like Felix, Santiago is a physical enforcer. He has no psychic gift, only tremendous physical strength.


NAME: Gianna

DATE OF BIRTH: Late 1970s




HEIGHT: 5‘6‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Gianna was tall, with long, dark hair and olive-toned skin. She was beautiful, for a human.

EDUCATION/OCCUPATION: Gianna served as the receptionist and assistant to the Volturi coven.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: As a human, Gianna was not considered a member of the Volturi, although she was loyal to them.


Gianna knew the Volturi‘s secret and kept it, serving them in the hope of one day being turned into a vampire. She knew that if she was not found helpful enough, she would be killed, but she chose to take the risk. Unfortunately, the Volturi decided her skills were less valuable than her blood.

The Volturi Lair

The Volturi maintain a permanent home in Volterra, Italy, which most of the actual coven — Caius being the exception — rarely leaves. The Volturi founded the town of Volterra three thousand years ago, during the time of the Etruscans. The Volturi still own almost all of the property in the vicinity.

Most of the living space is located below ground, in tunnels that run three stories beneath the town.

The main structure of the Volturi‘s actual home is a castle constructed during medieval times, built into the walls of the ancient city. The most noticeable feature of the castle is the large turret that rises above the rest of the structure. Most of the living space is located below ground, in tunnels that run three stories beneath the town.

There are several entrances to the Volturi castle. The front door is located at street level.

It opens to a reception area, where there is always a very polite human to receive visitors, as well as several inconspicuous surveillance cameras. All the doors in the room lead to dead-end, innocuous offices, and the elevator is heavily secured. This door is never used by the Volturi, their guard, or anyone who has real business with them. The elevator leads to another reception area, with even higher security.

The castle can also be accessed from Volterra‘s sewers. Several drainage holes in the stone-paved streets lead to often-used Volturi passageways. These drains are covered by iron grilles that are too heavy to be lifted by several human men together. These passages also lead to the second reception area, where the human in charge is aware of the nature of her bosses.

Thanks to Heidi‘s gift, when she asks her tourists to follow her into the beautiful, ancient tunnel that leads to an amazing castle, none of them refuse.

The most often used door is not actually located within the city. Rather, this door is located in the cellar of an ancient church outside the walls, somewhat hidden in the hills. Heidi‘s tours always end in this quaint, concealed historical landmark located beside a small private landing strip (owned by the Volturi). Just in case someone were to recognize the Tuscan landscape, there is no cell-phone service available. Thanks to Heidi‘s gift, when she asks her tourists to follow her into the beautiful, ancient tunnel that leads to an amazing castle, none of them refuse. This tunnel bypasses both reception areas and leads directly to the Volturi turret.

The turret contains the main meeting room of the Volturi, and also the dining room. They have made no attempt to make it comfortable for humans; the stone walls are not insulated, and there is no heat or cooling or artificial lighting. The room is lit by the arrow slits high above. The lone furnishings are three massive thronelike chairs that belong to Aro, Caius, and Marcus. They use these thrones when they are acting as magistrates, hearing cases against vampires who have infringed on the law. In the center of the room is a slight depression that contains a drainage grate. The Volturi dispose of the bodies of their victims through this hole, which sits above a very deep cavern. Routinely, these remains are reduced en masse by acid.



— Alice, to Bella (New Moon, Chapter 20)

The Amazon Coven




— Bella (Breaking Dawn, Chapter 39)

The Amazon coven consists of three sisters, Kachiri, Zafrina, and Senna, all natives of the Pantanal wetlands. The sisters never interact with humans except when hunting; they do not associate with them or make any pretense of behaving in a human way. They are feral in appearance and rarely leave the unpopulated wetlands except to hunt. Few vampires — including the Volturi — have ever heard of this coven.


NAME: Kachiri




PLACE OF ORIGIN: South America


EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 6‘4‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Kachiri is very tall, with thick black hair. Her features and limbs all appear unnaturally long.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: She does not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: She is part of a coven with her sisters, Senna and Zafrina.


Kachiri belonged to an ancient native tribe located on the fringe of the Pantanal. After she was changed, she went back for her two closest friends. They‘ve been together ever since, rarely leaving the wetlands, hunting in the habitations along the fringes. Their self-sufficient way of life has kept them a secret from most other vampires. Carlisle and his family discovered them in the 1940s while on a hunting trip; the Cullens‘ interest in large animal game brought them to an area other vampires dismissed for its lack of human prey. The Amazons were quite taken with Carlisle‘s gentle, friendly manner.

Their self-sufficient way of life has kept them a secret from most other vampires.


NAME: Senna




PLACE OF ORIGIN: South America


EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘11‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Senna is the shortest of the Amazons, but still very tall.

She has the same long limbs and facial features as Kachiri and Zafrina. She wears her black hair in a braid, and her clothing is homemade from animal skins.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: She does not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: She is part of a coven with her sisters, Kachiri and Zafrina.


NAME: Zafrina




PLACE OF ORIGIN: South America


EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 6‘1‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Zafrina shares the same long limbs, fingers, and facial features as Senna and Kachiri. Like Senna, Zafrina wears her long hair in a braid, and her clothing is made out of animal hide.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: Zafrina has a strong illusory talent. She can make her target see any illusion she wants, or see nothing at all. Her range includes anyone in her eyesight.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: She is part of a coven with her sisters, Kachiri and Senna.

The Denali Coven

The Denali coven was originally founded by Sasha, who was responsible for transforming Tanya, Kate, and Irina into vampires. They considered Sasha their mother and one another sisters. After Sasha was executed by the Volturi for creating an immortal child, Vasilii, Tanya assumed leadership of the coven. The sisters often amused themselves by romancing local human men. Such trysts usually ended in a meal; their lovers never survived long. After a few centuries, the sisters began to regret their actions. They felt real affection for some of these men, and losing them was depressing. They tried to spare the men they associated with while hunting other humans, but this didn‘t work; the human blood was too hard to resist in such close proximity, and eventually they would slip up. The longer one of them spent with a man, the more devastating it was when the man died. Finally Tanya devised a plan to give up human blood altogether. She had a similar experience in the woods as Carlisle did with his first vampire meal: She realized that unappetizing animal blood could quench her thirst. Her sisters decided to follow her example, and after many years of practice, they developed self-control to rival Carlisle‘s.



— Bella (New Moon, Chapter 3)

Around the time that Tanya and her sisters became comfortably settled into their

―vegetarian‖ lifestyle, they met Carmen and Eleazar. The newcomers were very taken with the Denali coven‘s compassionate choice. Tanya invited them to stay and try out the ―vegetarian‖ life. Both parties enjoyed one another‘s company so much that they made the situation permanent.

The coven was devastated by Irina‘s execution — again at the hands of the Volturi. At this difficult time they were joined by the nomad Garrett, who had formed an attachment with Kate.


NAME: Carmen





HAIR COLOR: Dark brown

EYE COLOR: Gold/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘5‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Carmen has a slight olive tone to her pale skin. Her hair is long and dark. Although she speaks flawless English, Spanish is her native language.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: She does not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: She is part of a coven with Garrett, Katrina, and Tanya, and formerly Irina. Eleazar is her mate.

They adopted the sisters‘ philosophy and were welcomed into the coven.


When Carmen fell in love with Eleazar, he was a member of the Volturi. Carmen had no talent to interest the Volturi, so she was not invited to join. For a while Eleazar worked for the Volturi while living with Carmen, but he felt the strain between his two worlds. Carmen was troubled by the violence of Eleazar‘s everyday life. Eventually he asked for and was granted permission to leave. Carmen and Eleazar spent several years traveling together and living as traditional vampires. But they sought a more peaceful existence and were pleased to meet the Denali sisters, who lived a ―vegetarian‖ lifestyle. They adopted the sisters‘ philosophy and were welcomed into the coven.


“May I hold you, bebé linda ?” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 30


NAME: Eleazar





HAIR COLOR: Dark brown

EYE COLOR: Gold/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘11‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Eleazar‘s pale skin has a light olive cast. His hair is dark.

Spanish is his first language.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: He has the ability to sense the type and strength of gifted vampires‘ talents.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: He is part of a coven with Garrett, Katrina, and Tanya, and formerly Irina. Carmen is his mate.


Eleazar was once a member of the Volturi guard. A gentle person by nature, he wasn‘t entirely happy with their methods, but he felt he was serving the greater good by working with those who would uphold the laws he respected.

After Eleazar fell in love with Carmen, he asked Aro‘s permission to leave the Volturi, knowing that Carmen was not happy with his involvement. Aro didn‘t like the idea but nonetheless gave his blessing. He felt there was a good chance that Eleazar would come back to the Volturi if needed, and he did not want to destroy a talent that he had no backup for. The Volturi were not actively recruiting as they had before the acquisition of the twins, but the future was never certain, and Aro might need Eleazar again.

Following his departure from the Volturi guard, Eleazar, together with Carmen, sought a more compassionate lifestyle. They were elated upon discovering the Denali sisters and readily adopted the ―vegetarian‖ philosophy.


“A very talented family.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 31

“No one can stand against them.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 31


NAME: Garrett

DATE OF BIRTH: Mid-1700s




HAIR COLOR: Sandy blond

EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 6‘2‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Garrett is tall and has a lanky build. He wears his long, sandy-colored hair tied back with a leather thong.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: He does not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: He has recently joined the Denali coven with Carmen, Eleazar, Katrina, and Tanya. Kate is his mate.


Garrett was transformed during the American Revolutionary War. A hotheaded patriot who willingly fought for the colonies‘ right to self-govern, he was a true believer in the American dream. His transformation occurred by accident in the aftermath of a battle.

Local vampires took advantage of the war‘s massive death toll to feast frequently. Garrett was with an isolated group of ten soldiers when a vampire attacked them, knocking Garrett unconscious at the beginning of the attack. The vampire drained the other nine soldiers. By the time he came to Garrett, he was so sated that he didn‘t drink much of Garrett‘s blood. Given the blow to Garrett‘s head, the vampire didn‘t expect the soldier to survive. Creating another vampire was not his intent.

After the transformation was complete, Garrett‘s quest to understand what had happened to him turned into a permanent characteristic. He is always curious and willing to investigate a mystery.


“Here‟s to freedom from oppression.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 34

“I have witnessed the bonds within this family — I say family and not coven .” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 37

“Do you wish me to call you master , too, like your sycophantic guard?” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 37

“If we live through this, I‟ll follow you anywhere, woman.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 37


NAME: Irina





HAIR COLOR: Pale blond

EYE COLOR: Gold/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘2‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Irina had straight, chin-length, pale blond hair.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: She did not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: She considered Kate and Tanya her sisters, even though they were not biologically related. All three were transformed by Sasha. Irina considered Sasha her mother. Carmen and Eleazar were also part of her coven. Irina was building a relationship with Laurent before his death.


Irina was the third vampire added to Sasha‘s coven, after Tanya and Kate. As a human, Irina was a pretty peasant girl living in a small farm community. She physically resembled Tanya and Kate quite a bit, and Sasha liked the idea of adding a new sister for her other girls. Sasha considered the girls, including Irina after she was changed, to be her daughters, and they in turn loved her as a mother. They were a close-knit coven, so it came as a great surprise to Irina when she discovered that her mother had created an immortal child despite the Volturi law prohibiting them.

Irina and her sisters were devastated when the Volturi executed their mother and the child, though they did not fault the Volturi for their decision. Sasha knew the law as well as Irina did, and none of the sisters could understand what she‘d done. They did, however, understand her decision to keep them in the dark; the sisters‘ total innocence of Sasha‘s act was the only reason the Volturi spared them.

All of the Denali sisters enjoyed the attention of men, both human and immortal, though — flirtatious by nature — none of them ever settled with one mate. As there were always more human men than vampire men, their relationships most often involved humans. In the beginning, these relationships with humans were short-lived and usually ended in a meal for one of the sisters. Their behavior earned them a place in human legend as the succubus. The myth varies from source to source, but at its essence is a tale of a beautiful demon who first seduces her prey and then drains him of life.

After a while, Irina and her sisters began to feel remorse; they were genuinely fond of many of the men they formed brief relationships with and regretted their deaths, though those deaths seemed inevitable.

After a while, Irina and her sisters began to feel remorse; they were genuinely fond of many of the men they formed brief relationships with and regretted their deaths, though those deaths seemed inevitable. They tried to pursue such relationships without killing the man involved, but eventually they would make a mistake and he would die. The regret and guilt became too difficult to bear. For a long while, the sisters avoided human men completely—

except as meals — but found this lonely. Tanya began to wonder if she could train herself to resist human blood altogether, and thereby make it possible to have human friends without killing them.

After a few decades, all three sisters grew adept at this new diet, and at enjoying intimacy with humans without injury.

While testing her ability to go without drinking any blood, Tanya had a similar experience to Carlisle‘s; animal blood suddenly began to smell better than nothing at all. Tanya experimented with living on animal blood and came to the conclusion that abstaining did make it easier to be around humans. Irina and Kate were excited by this breakthrough and joined their sister in her experiment. After a few decades, all three sisters grew adept at this new diet, and at enjoying intimacy with humans without injury.

Over a century later, a nomad couple named Eleazar and Carmen crossed paths with Irina and her sisters. Both unusual among vampires due to their compassionate natures, Eleazar and Carmen were immediately intrigued by the sisters‘ choice to forgo murder. They stayed with the sisters to learn their way of life, and grew closer and closer. Soon, they asked to join Irina and her sisters permanently. The sisters were pleased to enlarge their family.

By the time the Denali clan encountered Carlisle, they were all as good at vampire

―vegetarianism‖ as he was. They quickly bonded with the Cullens over their shared lifestyle, and considered one another extended family from that time forward.

When Laurent came looking for the Denali sisters on Carlisle‘s instruction, Irina was intrigued by his interest in her family‘s way of life. She began to have romantic feelings for him, and he seemed to return them. Before their relationship could progress beyond this early stage, Laurent was killed by the Quileute wolves. Irina never really forgave the Cullens for defending the wolves‘ action, until she realized she was guilty of a much greater offense against them.

Before she was killed, Irina had time to recognize how wrong she‘d been to betray the Cullens to the Volturi without first asking them for their story.


“There was no crime. There‟s no valid reason for you to continue here.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 37


NAME: Katrina; preferred name: Kate





HAIR COLOR: Pale blond

EYE COLOR: Gold/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘6‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Kate is tall and graceful, with long, straight hair the color of corn silk.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: She has the power to cause a painful, electric shock — like jolt in anyone she touches.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: She considers Irina and Tanya her sisters, even though they are not biologically related. All three were transformed by Sasha. Kate considered Sasha her mother. Carmen and Eleazar later joined the coven. In addition, Kate has become romantically interested in the nomad Garrett; he recently settled with the Denalis.


As a human, Kate was an attendant — basically a bodyguard — to a highborn female in a warlike tribe of proto-Slavic people. She was well trained in the martial arts of her people. When Sasha and Tanya attacked a small caravan transporting Kate‘s charge, everyone but Kate was slaughtered. Sasha was impressed by Kate‘s courage and determination to save her mistress.

Kate also resembled Tanya physically. On a whim, Sasha decided to create a sister for Tanya.

She had the ability to create a sensation like an electric shock by touching someone else — vampire or human — with the palm of her hand.

Kate‘s strongly developed sense of loyalty resulted in her becoming quickly bonded to her new family. Within a decade, Kate‘s ability to defend her mother and sister with more than normal physical means began to develop. She had the ability to create a sensation like an electric shock by touching someone else — vampire or human — with the palm of her hand. Although the shock was strongest in her hands, gradually she learned to control the intensity and to project it from any part of her body, though she always needed direct skin-to-skin contact.

Kate had a deep sense of respect for authority, stemming from her early training with a ruling family. This respect transferred to the Volturi when she joined the vampire world and Sasha explained its laws to her. She was horrified when it was revealed that Sasha had broken those laws so egregiously in creating an immortal child. Despite her loyalty to her mother, Kate could not ignore the fact that the Volturi were in the right. When the Volturi spared her and her sisters‘ lives, Kate was grateful for their kindness. She never questioned their motives, and her respect for their authority did not waver.

Always lonely after the destruction of their mother, Kate and her sisters explored different kinds of company. All three were flirtatious and enjoyed the attention of men, whether human or vampire. The human relationships invariably ended in death for the man, and over time, the sisters began to feel remorse for killing these humans they‘d felt a genuine fondness for. Kate was eager to try Tanya‘s solution — avoiding human blood altogether, with animal blood as a substitute. After a few decades, all three sisters grew adept at this new diet, and at enjoying intimacy with humans without causing injury.

A few centuries later, a nomad couple named Eleazar and Carmen crossed paths with Kate and her sisters and eventually joined the family permanently.

By the time the Denali clan encountered Carlisle, they were all as good at vampire

―vegetarianism‖ as he was. The Denali coven came to bond with the Cullens over their

―vegetarianism,‖ and considered them extended family.

When Kate met Garrett, she found something she‘d never found in another male. She is currently attempting monogamy for the first time in her long life.


“Keep the dream alive.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 4

“Nessie, would you like to come help your mother?” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 32

“Jane‟s mine. She needs a taste of her own medicine.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 38


NAME: Tanya





HAIR COLOR: Strawberry blond

EYE COLOR: Gold/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘5‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Tanya is very beautiful, even for a vampire.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: She does not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: She considers Kate and Irina her sisters, even though they are not biologically related. All three were transformed by Sasha. Tanya considered Sasha her mother. Carmen, Eleazar, and Garrett are also part of her coven.


Tanya was the first of Sasha‘s adopted daughters. She was Sasha‘s biological great-niece, and when Sasha decided she‘d like some companionship in her vampire life, she chose Tanya to join her. Sasha enjoyed having the company of another female so much that she added two more

―daughters‖ to her coven in the first century after changing Tanya.

Tanya was the closest to Sasha, so she was even more shocked than the others when Sasha‘s crime was revealed. She could never understand why Sasha would act in such a way, but once the Volturi had tested Tanya and her sisters‘ innocence, she did understand why her adoptive mother would keep it a secret from her.

Losing Sasha was a tremendous blow to Tanya and her sisters.

Losing Sasha was a tremendous blow to Tanya and her sisters. Tanya always felt like there was an immense hole in her life. She tried to fill the emptiness with a long line of flirtations, which were enough to frequently distract her from her loss. Tanya was the first of the sisters to become sensitive to the deaths of her human companions as she inevitably killed them for their blood. Over time, these smaller losses of short-term friends began to remind her too much of Sasha‘s death. When the pain of these losses became greater than her entertainment in the liaisons, she gave up human men for a time. Frustrated by the return of her nagging loneliness, Tanya tried to think of a way she could go back to her romantic pursuits without killing her human friends. After much thought, she decided it was the steady diet of human blood that made it so difficult for her to resist the blood of specific humans she wished to spare.

Eventually, she discovered that substituting animal blood took care of her nutritional needs without weakening her ability to resist human blood. Her sisters enthusiastically mimicked her new behavior, and in a few centuries they had perfected their ―vegetarianism.‖

When Tanya met Eleazar and Carmen, she was happy to explain her dietary choices. As the newcomers became closer and closer to Tanya and her sisters, Tanya naturally took her place as the leader of the whole family. She was delighted to meet Carlisle when the Cullens finally encountered them, seeing him as her peer in many ways. She also was intrigued by Edward, mostly because he showed no interest in her advances despite the fact that he had no partner.

Tanya never gave up her lighthearted pursuit of Edward, which is one of the reasons the Cullens did not settle in Alaska with the Denalis.


“We‟ll get to know each other later. We have eons of time for that!” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 4


SASHA Creator of Irina, Kate, and Tanya. Sasha was killed by the Volturi for creating an immortal child, Vasilii.

VASILII The immortal child created by Sasha, Vasilii was physically three years old when Sasha transformed him. He was killed by the Volturi, along with Sasha, when his existence was discovered. He didn‘t meet the other members of Sasha‘s coven until the day he died.

The Egyptian Coven

The Egyptian coven is one of the oldest covens — if not the very oldest — in existence. The remaining coven is just a fraction of the size of the original, but they still hunt on their traditional lands.


NAME: Amun

DATE OF BIRTH: Before 2500 B.C.





EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘8‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Amun‘s pale skin has a slight olive cast, indicating the darkness of his skin before transformation.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: He does not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: He is the leader of his coven, which includes three others: his mate, Kebi; Benjamin, whom he created; and Benjamin‘s mate, Tia.


Members of the Egyptian coven, including Amun, existed as individuals for centuries before the Romanians‘ rise to power. After the Romanians began to grow as a coven and dominate their part of the world, several solo vampires and vampire couples joined forces to protect their dominance in the Nile River Valley. Unlike the Romanians, they did not form a guard of subordinates or try to overthrow other vampire covens. Similar to the Romanians, they kept many human slaves and lived as gods. Also, none of them possessed psychic gifts.

The Egyptians and the Romanians coexisted; they were cordial to one another, though not friendly.

The Egyptians and the Romanians coexisted; they were cordial to one another, though not friendly. Had the Romanians continued the expansion of their empire, eventually they probably would have tried to overthrow the much smaller Egyptian clan. Before the Romanians had time to move that far south, however, the Volturi attacked.

A century later, after the Volturi had soundly won the war against the Romanians, they continued their march against other covens that lived ostentatiously. Their next target was Egypt.

Again, the Volturi began with an attempt at diplomacy. They sent ambassadors to the Egyptian

―gods,‖ explaining their cause and asking the Egyptians to comply. For the most part, the Egyptians were furious and refused to grant the Volturi any power over them. Only one Egyptian pair changed sides — Amun and Kebi. Amun knew that if the Volturi were able to overthrow the Romanians, the more peaceful Egyptian coven would be easy prey. He was right; the Egyptians were totally decimated in only five years.

Amun had a very strong survival instinct, and he was willing to bow to the Volturi if it kept him alive. Kebi followed Amun‘s choice without question. However, Amun was always bitter at having to surrender his former lifestyle. He loved the worship, the towering desert monuments, and the excess. He knew he could not plot against the Volturi, because Aro would find out. But he hoped that, over time, he could gain the strength to oppose them. He had learned from the Volturi methods, and he sought out talented humans and vampires.

Unfortunately for him, Aro was well aware of Amun‘s true desires. Aro felt the need to let Amun survive in the first place as an example to other covens, so they could see the truth of the Volturi‘s offer: As long as they did as the Volturi commanded, they could live. Aro always kept a close eye on Amun‘s movements afterward, so Aro was able to identify individuals Amun was trying to integrate into his coven and — if they had a valuable talent — invite them into the Volturi guard first. Sometimes he was too late, and Amun found a good prospect first. Demetri was one of Amun‘s acquisitions. But with Chelsea on his side, it was not hard for Aro to woo people away from Amun. In many other cases, Aro would simply accuse a coven of a crime when he wanted one of their talented members. He‘d kill the rest and save the special one. But Aro enjoys toying with Amun too much to end his life that way.

Over the centuries, Amun gave up trying to create his own talented force.

Over the centuries, Amun gave up trying to create his own talented force. However, when he stumbled across Benjamin — who, as a human, was performing ―magic‖ tricks in the streets of Cairo — he began to dream again. He became a total recluse, keeping Benjamin a deep secret by avoiding contact with any vampire or human who might possibly cross paths with the Volturi.

He treated Benjamin as a son, and Benjamin viewed him as a father. The only big falling-out they had in the early years of their coven was when Benjamin left briefly to create his own mate, against Amun‘s wishes. Benjamin was quickly forgiven when he returned, with no harm done.


“I gave you life. You‟re wasting it.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 34


NAME: Benjamin

DATE OF BIRTH: Between 1790 and 1800

DATE OF TRANSFORMATION: Between 1805 and 1820, at age 15




EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘7‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Benjamin appears to be a teenager, and his pale skin has the slight olive tone that is evidence of his much darker human skin.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: He can influence the elements — water, earth, fire, and air. He is able to physically manipulate the world around him with his will, similar to telekinetic powers.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: He was created by Amun, the leader of his coven, which also includes Amun‘s mate, Kebi; and Benjamin‘s mate, Tia.

The uncle discovered Benjamin‘s strange ability to control fire and taught him to do tricks with his gift.


As a human, Benjamin grew up in the slums of Cairo. As a young child, he lost his mother, and he had no knowledge of his father. He was raised by his mother‘s extended family, handed around from grandmother to aunt to cousin — whoever was able to feed him at the time.

Eventually he ended up in the hands of his mother‘s uncle, a street performer who took in unwanted young members of the family and taught them to dance and sing for money, sell trinkets, or pick pockets — whatever they were most adept at doing. Sometimes, he also profited from selling the children if they were no good at earning him money. The uncle discovered Benjamin‘s strange ability to control fire and taught him to do tricks with his gift. Benjamin became the most profitable member of the uncle‘s family, and therefore very dear to him.

Among the children in the uncle‘s care was a girl named Tia, a distant relative of Benjamin‘s. Tia was an intelligent, serious child, and she and Benjamin grew very close. They watched out for and confided in each other. When Benjamin was fifteen and Tia was twelve, they decided that someday soon they would run away together.

Benjamin‘s audience was growing; more and more people heard about the amazing boy who could control fire. One night as he was performing for a large audience, Amun observed the show.

After so many frustrating losses to Aro, Amun did not hesitate. He snatched the boy from the street that night, in the process killing the uncle, whom Benjamin was walking home with.

Amun kept Benjamin hidden in his undiscovered, buried temple for five years. He and Kebi took turns hunting and bringing food home to Benjamin. Benjamin was never allowed to leave, so there was no chance someone would see him and mention him to the Volturi. Amun was honest with Benjamin to an extent; he told Benjamin that the Volturi existed and would want to steal him for themselves. He explained that the Volturi would use their gifts to enslave Benjamin, to take away his free will. However, Amun did not tell Benjamin why he himself wanted the boy — as a talent that could be added to his own coven in the hope of one day defying the Volturi. Amun treated Benjamin as his son, and never let on that Benjamin‘s talent was what he was really after. Benjamin responded to Amun‘s apparent kindness. He respected Amun and loved him as a father. His response to Kebi was less strong, mostly because Kebi did not show much affection for the boy. Amun was the center of her world, and all she really cared about.

Benjamin was not only able to control fire easily; he also developed the ability to manipulate other elements.

It was clear to Amun that Benjamin was an unprecedented find. No one else like him existed in the vampire world.

Amun spent a great deal of time developing Benjamin‘s talent. He was overjoyed that the promise he‘d seen in the human boy was more than answered in the young vampire. Benjamin was not only able to control fire easily; he also developed the ability to manipulate other elements. Wind came to him first after fire, then earth, and finally water. It was clear to Amun that Benjamin was an unprecedented find. No one else like him existed in the vampire world.

Amun was cautiously hopeful that his luck had finally turned.

After Benjamin had completely outgrown the newborn madness, he began to think more and more of Tia. Though his memories of her were dim, he remembered enough to worry about what would become of her without his protection, or his uncle‘s. Amun tried to convince Benjamin that human problems no longer applied to him, without success. Amun kept him as busy as possible, developing his talents and educating him in the arts and sciences, but Benjamin still found ample time to privately agonize over Tia‘s fate. He asked permission to look for her, but Amun was adamant. He told Benjamin it was far too dangerous to risk discovery, and that the Volturi would destroy Amun and Kebi to get to Benjamin.

About five years after his transformation, Benjamin disobeyed. One night when Amun was hunting, Benjamin briefly trapped Kebi with a small cave-in, and then escaped. Though it was his first time aboveground in five years, Benjamin remained totally focused. He was determined not to be responsible for putting Amun in any danger. He searched at night, questioning anyone connected to Tia, himself, or his uncle. He was careful to hunt inconspicuously, leaving no traces that might be reported to the Volturi. To avoid notice during the day he hid underground, in crevices he created himself.





— Bella, on Benjamin (Breaking Dawn, Chapter 35) Eventually he found clues to Tia‘s trail, which led him to the port city of Suez, where she had been sold for a modest dowry to a much older man. She‘d been fifteen at the time; she was now seventeen. Benjamin was conflicted. Tia was safe. She had a home and a husband. His plan to save her seemed unnecessary now. He watched her for two nights, wondering what the right course would be. Finally he decided to ask Tia.

He waited until an evening when her husband stayed late in the city, and then he called to her from her small garden. He was afraid to have her see him in the lamplight inside, afraid that she would be horrified by the changes in him. When Tia saw him through the window, she raced downstairs to meet him. Though she was momentarily shocked by his pale, hard skin, she was overjoyed to see him again, having thought for five years that he was dead.

Benjamin told her the truth right away, and explained why he‘d come to find her. He said he realized now that she did not need rescuing, and told her he would go away. Tia was awestruck by the revelation that her best friend was an actual vampire, and yet still so compassionate and so much the boy she remembered. She asked for more details. As they talked, they walked away from Tia‘s house, through the dark city streets, so that her husband would not discover Benjamin when he returned. Benjamin told her all the details about his vampire life, Amun, Kebi, and hiding from the Volturi. They talked all night. When dawn was close, Tia worried that Benjamin would die. Benjamin told her about the sun‘s real effect on vampires. He offered to take her home before he had to hide, but Tia didn‘t want to go home — she‘d already made up her mind. Benjamin needed her; she wasn‘t going to leave him to face the dangers of the Volturi alone. Benjamin warned her of the pain, but she would not be dissuaded.

Benjamin guessed that it would be wiser to convert Tia before taking her back to Amun.

Benjamin guessed that it would be wiser to convert Tia before taking her back to Amun.

He created a deep fissure in the desert outside Suez and carried Tia inside. There he bit her, and then waited with her through the three days of her transformation. As soon as she was transformed, Benjamin took her hunting. When she was satiated, they went back to Amun‘s temple.

Amun was at first enraged, but quickly calmed down as Benjamin explained. Clearly, no harm had been done. Having Tia with him as a vampire would remove Benjamin‘s one tie to the human world. And Benjamin had proved that he could be relied upon in the outside world.

Amun‘s coven began to live a little more normally, though always with the greatest secrecy possible. Benjamin was very happy in his coven, with Tia as his mate. He did not question Amun‘s motives.


“It‟s a pity you couldn‟t replace my will with your own in the process; perhaps then you would have been satisfied with me.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 34

“Apparently, I‟m a hot commodity. It appears I have to win the right to be free.”

Breaking Dawn, Chapter 34


NAME: Kebi

DATE OF BIRTH: Before 2500 B.C.





EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘3‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Kebi has long, curly black hair and a faint olive cast to her pale skin, denoting the darkness of her human skin.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: She does not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: She is Amun‘s mate. Benjamin and Tia are also part of their coven.


Kebi was chosen by Amun from his human slaves because of her beauty and total loyalty to her master. Even after her conversion, their relationship was never one of equals. When Amun decided to bow to the Volturi‘s demands, Kebi followed his lead without question. She would have done the same had he decided to defy the Volturi and end both their lives.

Kebi has little emotion for anyone besides Amun.

Kebi has little emotion for anyone besides Amun. Benjamin she tolerated because he made Amun happy, but she was somewhat jealous of the boy. When Benjamin brought Tia home, Kebi was pleased; she hoped Amun would be less entranced with the boy when it was clear he loved Tia more than Amun. Kebi‘s hopes about that rift were not entirely fulfilled, as Benjamin continued to love Amun as a father. But Amun‘s jealousy of Benjamin‘s affections, though well concealed, was enough to make Kebi content.



DATE OF BIRTH: Between 1790 and 1800; three years after Benjamin DATE OF TRANSFORMATION: Five years after Benjamin‘s transformation, at age 17




EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘4‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Tia has heavy, straight black hair and pale skin with a slight olive tone, indicating the darkness of her skin before transformation.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: She does not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: She is Benjamin‘s mate. They are in a coven with Amun and Kebi.


Tia had a very large family; she was one of many children. Her overwhelmed and financially distraught mother began placing her children in the care of her second cousin (Benjamin‘s great-uncle) when she could no longer feed them. Tia was given away when she was five. She had a good singing voice and nimble fingers, so the uncle kept her with him. When she was about seven, Benjamin came to live with the uncle. Though Benjamin was three years her senior, he became her best friend and confidant. Tia was the first person to whom Benjamin revealed his gift with fire. It was Tia who suggested he show the uncle; she knew that a special ability like this would ensure that the uncle would hold on to Benjamin, thus keeping them together. As the years passed, their close friendship became more serious, and they planned to someday run away together. They held back small amounts of money instead of turning all their earnings over to the uncle, saving for that future.

Tia was devastated when Benjamin disappeared.

Tia was devastated when Benjamin disappeared. When the uncle‘s body was found, everyone assumed that Benjamin was dead, too. Tia searched out her mother, whom she found in slightly better circumstances. Tia had all the money she and Benjamin had saved, and her mother was happy to let her stay with such a contribution. Tia continued performing and stealing to help her family. After a few years, Tia‘s mother was offered a dowry for the girl, which she accepted.

Tia was married to a clerk for a shipping company and taken to Suez. Her circumstances were more comfortable than at home, and she was not unhappy. However, she did not love her husband.

When she realized that she couldn‘t effectively stay with him as a human, she was willing to become a vampire.

When she saw Benjamin in her garden, Tia didn‘t question for a second that she would be leaving with him. Though she was totally unprepared for his changed appearance or revelations, none of it made a difference. When she realized that she couldn‘t effectively stay with him as a human, she was willing to become a vampire.

Tia never embraced Amun or Kebi as fully as Benjamin had. She could see that, like the uncle, Amun was interested in Benjamin because of what he could get out of him. But as long as Amun‘s goal was the same as hers — to keep Benjamin safe — she had no problem staying with his coven.

The Irish Coven

The three members of the Irish coven are old friends of Carlisle Cullen‘s. Siobhan is the leader, but she and her mate, Liam, trust the judgment of their newest member, Maggie, who has a gift for knowing a lie when she hears one.


NAME: Liam

DATE OF BIRTH: Around 1615

DATE OF TRANSFORMATION: 1651, at approximately age 36



HAIR COLOR: Dark brown

EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 6‘5‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Liam is tall and lean, with an imposing countenance.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: He does not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: Liam‘s mate is Siobhan. Maggie is the other member of their coven.

Once a vampire was totally sated, she might continue to drink blood for enjoyment rather than need.


Liam was an Irish warrior who fought in the Irish Rebellion of 1641 and later against Cromwell‘s reconquest of Ireland. Liam became a vampire through one of the most common types of accidental transformation: battlefield excess. After the Volturi came to power, vampires were unable to kill as recklessly as before, and most were forced to curb their appetites to avoid notice. The circumstances of war, however, gave them an opportunity to kill large numbers of humans at once without attracting attention from either humans or vampires. It became common among nomads to seek out human wars as an opportunity to feast. One of the consequences of this practice was the occasional unplanned transformation. Once a vampire was totally sated, she might continue to drink blood for enjoyment rather than need. In such situations, she might not drain enough blood from her victim to kill him. If she left him in that state without any further violence, he would begin the transformation process.

After Liam‘s conversion was complete, he went through the normal period of newborn behavior. He met Siobhan during his first six months of vampire life. She instructed him on the vampire laws, which kept him from drawing negative attention from the Volturi. Liam was very taken with Siobhan‘s strength and beauty. They joined forces quickly. Though it was never discussed, from the beginning Siobhan was the coven‘s leader.

When Liam was no longer a newborn, he became selective about his prey. For centuries he would kill only Englishmen. English soldiers are still his preferred victims.

Liam and Siobhan were well aware of the Volturi and their rules, and always behaved circumspectly. For Liam, as long as the Volturi did not become corrupted by their power and attempt to control more aspects of vampire life, he had no problem with them. He was born into a world where their laws of mutual convenience were accepted fact, and he did not question them.

Liam was not as fascinated as Siobhan by the stories of the Volturi guard‘s special talents. When Siobhan discovered Maggie and wanted to try to create her own talented vampire, Liam was opposed. He was concerned that the Volturi would resent the imitation, if they found out. More than that, he didn‘t want to share Siobhan‘s attention with anyone else. Siobhan transformed Maggie regardless, leaving Liam quite unhappy with her decision. Siobhan pled with him to give Maggie a chance, and he grudgingly agreed. It didn‘t take long for Liam to see the benefits of having a talented coven member, and over time he became quite fond of Maggie.

He learned to consider her a younger sister.


NAME: Maggie






EYE COLOR: Blue (human); red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘2‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Maggie is short and very thin, and has bright red ringlets.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: She is able to tell if a person is lying.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: She is in a coven with Siobhan and Liam.


Maggie always had difficulty dealing with authority, on a parental level and on a community level. The normal everyday hypocrisy that most people expected was always foreign to her. If someone said something that did not correspond with their true feelings, Maggie was instinctively aware of that discrepancy. In those situations, she felt compelled to point out the lie.

Though this often led to punishment, sometimes quite severe, she was unable to let the lie pass.

Her accuracy made people uncomfortable, and the closer someone was to her, the more uncomfortable she made them.

In reality — as Maggie was well aware — she was sacrificed because her parents did not love her as much as they loved her siblings.

In the mid-1840s the Great Famine decimated her village. Everyone who could afford to immigrate to America left. This included her family, who had not quite enough to buy passage for every member. Maggie‘s maternal grandparents, who were already in poor condition, were left behind. Maggie was left, ostensibly to care for them as best she could. In reality — as Maggie was well aware — she was sacrificed because her parents did not love her as much as they loved her siblings. She was a trial to them, and they sometimes wondered if her abilities were demonic.

Siobhan and Liam found Maggie alone on the road to Cork, nearly dead from starvation.

Naturally, when Siobhan questioned Maggie, her answers were the whole truth.

After Maggie‘s transformation, her ability became even more pronounced. A person did not have to speak aloud for Maggie to know if he was behaving in a way contrary to what he believed. If a person misrepresented himself in either appearance or action, she knew.

Because Siobhan and Liam were routinely honest with each other and themselves, having Maggie join their coven was not the strain it might have been. It was easier for Maggie to be with them than it would have been otherwise; after her transformation, any kind of deception made her physically uncomfortable.


“I know truth is on Carlisle‟s side. I can‟t ignore that.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 34


NAME: Siobhan

DATE OF BIRTH: Around 1490

DATE OF TRANSFORMATION: Around 1510, at approximately age 20




EYE COLOR: Violet-blue (human); red/black (vampire) HEIGHT: 6‘2‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Siobhan is very tall, muscular, and voluptuous, with thick black hair and exceptionally beautiful facial features.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: Though Siobhan does not believe she has any talent, some suspect she can affect the outcome of a situation through willpower alone.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: Her mate is Liam, and Maggie is also in her coven.

Eventually, she became an accepted part of village life and grew famous in the surrounding areas as the big blacksmith girl.


Siobhan was the only daughter of a blacksmith and his wife. This made her unusual in a village where most families were very large. She had a strikingly attractive face. Large violet-blue eyes, surrounded by incredibly long lashes, were her dominant feature. She also was known for her perfect fair skin. Aside from these things, however, she was unlike the other village beauties. By the time she was fourteen, she was taller than any other woman in the village. By the time she was sixteen, she was taller than all of the men, except for her father. She was also stronger than many of them; as an only child, she‘d always helped her father at the forge. He died in an accident when she was seventeen, and by then she was strong and knowledgeable enough to take over his craft. This was unheard of, and disapproved of by many. However, it was what she wanted, and the village needed a blacksmith. Eventually, she became an accepted part of village life and grew famous in the surrounding areas as the big blacksmith girl.

Despite her beautiful face and generous hourglass figure, Siobhan did not have suitors.

Her height, strength, and profitable occupation were intimidating to the village men. This did not bother Siobhan, who saw no need for a husband. She was able to comfortably support herself and her mother, and she did not want anything else.

The physical size and strength that awed the locals, however, brought her to the attention of a Turkish vampire named Sancar. Sancar was creating a vampire harem, and he desired unusual women for his collection. Sancar traveled through all of Europe with human servants, seeking the exceptional. He heard of the beautiful Irish woman who was stronger than a man, and sought her out. She was like no one he‘d ever seen before, and he decided to add her to his assortment of females.

She was intrigued by the amazing things they were rumored to be capable of, and by the warriors in the bunch.

Sancar gave Siobhan no warning or explanation. He abducted her in the night, raped her, bit her, and then carried her back to his home while she was still in the painful throes of the conversion process. Sancar had a difficult time dealing with the newborn Siobhan. She was incredibly strong, even for a newborn vampire. She also had no love for Sancar. For a while he was able to keep her distracted with plenty of blood, but before her first year as a vampire was over, she killed Sancar. She was then forced to destroy the three members of his harem coven who were devoted to him. The four others were not upset by Sancar‘s demise, and they all went their own ways. Siobhan spent a few years traveling and learning the way vampires lived before she returned to Ireland. She was more widely nomadic for her first century, hunting across most of Europe and Asia. During that time, she met a few members of the Volturi guard. She was intrigued by the amazing things they were rumored to be capable of, and by the warriors in the bunch. She wondered if she was strong enough to be acceptable. But she never went to the Volturi to be considered. She didn‘t want to belong to anyone but herself.

On one of her return trips to Ireland, she found the newborn Liam. She was attracted to his fierceness and focus, both of which were apparent despite his newborn wildness. She could see that he was totally uneducated, and so she took him under her wing. After they joined forces, they stayed mostly in Ireland. Liam was most comfortable there, though he did travel occasionally with Siobhan.

Siobhan and Liam had just finished hunting one night when they came across Maggie.

Siobhan was startled when the delirious child accused them of not being human. Intrigued, Siobhan asked her how she knew, and Maggie explained the curse that had led to her abandonment.

Siobhan was sure she had discovered one of those special humans who would have an extra ability as a vampire. She was excited to proceed.

Siobhan was sure she had discovered one of those special humans who would have an extra ability as a vampire. She was excited to proceed, but Liam was upset. He didn‘t understand why she would want to add someone to their coven. Weren‘t they happy as they were? Siobhan overruled him, and invited Maggie to join them, promising that she would never be hungry again. Maggie could sense that Siobhan was telling the truth, and that Siobhan did not mean her harm, so she agreed.

Siobhan asked Liam to trust her, and he reluctantly agreed to see how things would work out. Siobhan made it clear that Liam was her first priority, and he became reconciled to Maggie‘s presence more quickly than Siobhan had expected.

Siobhan also enjoyed Maggie‘s company more than she expected. She felt very maternal toward the girl, and fell naturally into the kind of close relationship she‘d had with her own mother. She also enjoyed the advantage Maggie‘s talent gave her in any kind of interaction.

Maggie learned to control her vocalizations, so she was able to simply nod or shake her head slightly to communicate whether or not someone was being honest. As long as she knew Siobhan was hearing the truth, she was comfortable.

While Siobhan was happy with her choice to include Maggie in her coven, she felt no desire to seek out other talented humans. Her curiosity about that world was satisfied.


“Shall I visualize the outcome I desire?” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 34

James‘s Coven

James, a tracker who loved the hunt, sought out the company of a few other vampires in order to use their help in his ongoing tracking games. His coven was nomadic. The members, all of whom are now deceased, drank human blood, as do most vampires, and they spent the majority of their lives outdoors. Because they never made the attempt to blend in with humans, they did not see the need to pay close attention to personal appearance; they looked feral to other vampires and to humans.

NAME: James

DATE OF BIRTH: Around 1780

DATE OF TRANSFORMATION: Around 1805, at approximately age 25


PLACE OF ORIGIN: Present-day northwestern Pennsylvania, near Lake Erie HAIR COLOR: Light brown

EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘10‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: With an average build and nondescript features, James was not as beautiful as most vampires.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: He was a skilled tracker, able to sense in advance the most likely moves of his prey.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: His mate was Victoria. Laurent also traveled in his coven for a short while.


James was born near the end of the American Revolution. His father was a French trapper and his mother was an English girl who had come to the Americas as an indentured servant and subsequently run away from her master. They lived a nomadic lifestyle, spending most of their time on the trail and occasionally returning to Montreal or Pittsburgh to trade.

James was raised to track and trap, and he learned quickly. The Iroquois killed his parents before his eleventh birthday, but already his skills were developed enough that he was able to survive on his own. He gained a measure of fame during his late teens and early twenties as the best tracker on the frontier, as well as sometimes being called the ugliest. He didn‘t care about his face; all he cared about was winning. He was boastful about his prowess, and always up for a challenge. He won all contests of skill, until one night in Montreal, when he met a mysterious Frenchman — also claiming to be a tracker — who found James‘s confidence amusing. The Frenchman offered to best him in any test, his only condition being that the competition had to be at night. James was unimpressed by the dandified appearance of his competitor, and he agreed without hesitation, even when the Frenchman — seemingly in jest — upped the stakes to life or death. James‘s test was to release a marked deer into the wild, allow it an hour to run or hide, and then track it. Of course, the Frenchman found the deer in a matter of minutes. He returned the carcass to James, who had just begun his search, and reminded James that his life was forfeit.

James — who had witnessed the speed with which the Frenchman moved and also saw no evidence of traditional hunting methods on the deer‘s body — cried foul. He said the Frenchman obviously had an undisclosed advantage, perhaps witchcraft or demonic help. If James were given the same advantage, he was sure he could beat the Frenchman.

The French vampire was entertained by James‘s brash confidence. He agreed to give James the exact advantage he himself had, thinking it a good joke to end the bet by taking James‘s life in a different way. He bit James and left, laughing, offering a rematch in a decade or so.

He was quite pleased with his heightened abilities, and surprised that he was no longer considered ugly.

James adjusted to vampire life fairly easily. He was quite pleased with his heightened abilities, and surprised that he was no longer considered ugly. But that didn‘t soften him toward the Frenchman. It was only about six months after the newborn madness had faded when he found the French vampire and killed him — James‘s idea of winning the bet.

Being a vampire made normal tracking — James‘s lifelong pursuit — somewhat boring. His senses were so developed that it was child‘s play to track any animal or human. To liven things up, James began giving himself harder and harder challenges. He would pick someone on a crowded city street, allow himself one sniff, and then walk away from the chase for a week or a month. Then he would return to the scene and track that individual. When that became too easy, he would do the same thing on a crowded dock, follow the ship a few months later, and search for his victim in another country. Sometimes these hunts took years, but James always found his prey. Because of his success, this got boring, too. He looked for bigger challenges, and began moving away from the practice of tracking for food. Instead he tracked vampires, a more worthy prey. This practice nearly cost him his life a few times, when he‘d killed one member of a coven and then been set upon by the vengeful remnants. These dangerous experiences did not stop him; he enjoyed the escalated consequences of his game.

James met Victoria in England while playing this game. He caught the vampire scent, and though he had no idea whom he was tracking, he tried to hunt her down. It was the longest hunt he ever embarked on. No matter how fast he moved, she was one step ahead. He realized quickly that she somehow knew he was after her, though she‘d had no warning. He got close enough a few times to catch glimpses of the beautiful redhead, but she always escaped. After a few years of endless chasing, James was intrigued. He knew his tracking abilities went beyond just having excellent senses. He had a gift: He could predict his prey‘s moves in advance. But this vampire seemed to have a similar ability to know his own plans. He no longer wanted to kill the vampire; he wanted to learn more about her.

Unbeknownst to him, the less he meant her actual harm, the less effective her own skill became. She could feel the shift and eventually allowed him to catch up with her — in a place she‘d chosen for its easy escape routes, just in case. She was also curious about this dogged pursuer who could somehow always find her trail again.

Victoria‘s super-developed sense of self-preservation made teaming up with such a lethal vampire look promising.

His own desires were always more important to him than Victoria was.

There was an immediate attraction between the two. They teamed up for more reasons than attraction, however. Victoria‘s super-developed sense of self-preservation made teaming up with such a lethal vampire look promising. James knew his ongoing search for the next big challenge was only going to get him into more dangerous circumstances as time went on; joining forces with a vampire so good at escaping would be a definite benefit. After a time, Victoria was totally bound to him; he was her mate. However, James was never as committed to the relationship. His own desires were always more important to him than Victoria was.

James did not view Victoria‘s survival as a failure, because he had found her and — in a way — claimed her life. He considered Alice Cullen his only failure.

While pursuing a different hunt, James came across Alice‘s scent. She was what the Volturi call ―a singer‖ for James. The scent was very old, but James had tracked older. So, not abandoning his other hunt, James paused for a snack. Victoria, always the cautious one, was the first to be aware of the other vampire involved when James found the asylum where Alice had been incarcerated. She made James pause to get the lay of the land, thinking there might be more than one vampire; possibly this area was their hunting land, the asylum their headquarters. James never truly forgave her for making him hesitate in light of what happened.

The second James caught her scent, Alice saw a vision of him coming to kill her.

The second James caught her scent, Alice saw a vision of him coming to kill her. She confided in her only friend, the old vampire who worked nights in the asylum. This vampire knew Alice was special and cared about her like a daughter. He decided to save her from James, but she foresaw failure after failure, and he started to realize what he was up against. He stole her from the asylum and hid her as well as he could, biting her before he left her alone. He went back to try to delay James, knowing he was no match for the strong tracker but hoping to give Alice the time she had foreseen might be enough to keep her alive. James easily overpowered the older vampire. As a precaution, Victoria questioned the old one, using rather extreme measures to extract all information about Alice and anyone else involved. James found the vampire‘s concern for Alice and interest in her baffling but intriguing. He paid attention to the story — until he found out that the old one had bitten Alice. He left Victoria with the still-living vampire and continued on to his prize. He was disappointed to find Alice clearly in the last throes of the vampire conversion — though she made no sound, an aftereffect of the shock treatments. All of her blood had been changed by the transformation, and there was no satisfying snack to be had. Alice was totally vulnerable, too lost in the pain of the process to even notice James‘s presence. He watched her wake and scramble away to look for blood, in the typical newborn fashion. He wondered if she would be special, as the old one believed. He decided to give her time to develop into a worthy adversary, though she looked too tiny and weak to give him much hope.

Irritated by the loss of her blood, he returned and destroyed the old vampire.

As James grew more and more ambitious in his games, Victoria grew more cautious.

As James grew more and more ambitious in his games, Victoria grew more cautious. She was the one who suggested teaming up with expendable allies just for the sake of numbers. They did this successfully a few times, letting the additions act as the canary in the mine during potentially dangerous situations, cannon fodder in others.

Laurent was wilier and more skilled than some others James and Victoria had chosen, so he lasted longer. He enjoyed the novelty of James‘s lifestyle. They all worked together easily through a couple of uneventful hunts.

James and Victoria heard rumors of large clans of vampires claiming areas in the Pacific Northwest, and James was attracted to the rumors of these unusually large covens. Victoria was wary; she wanted to find more backup, but James didn‘t want to waste time. He thought Laurent was more than enough.

The surprise of seeing Alice there only fueled this desire to win at last.

James had no immediate objective in mind when they first met the Cullens. This was just an information-gathering trip. He let Laurent lead the way so that if the coven was hostile, Laurent would be their first priority. James was shocked and then thrilled by Bella‘s presence and Edward‘s protectiveness. Here was a hunt that would combine the best of both worlds: a delicious prize (though Bella was not a singer for James, she smelled much sweeter than the average human), and a huge coven bent on protecting her. He was determined to get to the prize before she was ruined, as Alice had been. The surprise of seeing Alice there only fueled this desire to win at last. He hoped that as they had not turned the girl so far, they had a reason for not acting, but he couldn‘t be sure.




— James, to Bella (Twilight, Chapter 22)

James was furious when he learned of Laurent‘s defection, but in his hurry to get Bella before someone thought to change her, he postponed vengeance until after the hunt.

The hunt proved a huge disappointment. Rather than keeping Bella physically under his protection, as James would have preferred, Edward opted to try misdirection. Following his hunches, James wound up in the same city as Bella, and then struck upon a successful lure to separate her from the vampires. He was hopeful, however, that Edward and his family‘s search for revenge would prove more exciting.

He lied to Bella just once, in the dance studio. Of Alice, he said, ―So I guess her coven ought to be able to derive some comfort from this experience. I get you, but they get her.‖ In fact, he had no intention of letting Alice live. Now that Alice was able to care for herself and had the support of a strong coven, James planned to finish that hunt, too.


“You brought a snack?” Twilight, Chapter 18

“To be quite honest, I‟m disappointed. I expected a much greater challenge.” Twilight, Chapter 22

“I never will understand the obsession some vampires seem to form with you humans.”

Twilight, Chapter 22

NAME: Laurent


DATE OF TRANSFORMATION: 1740s, at approximately age 40


PLACE OF ORIGIN: Paris, France


EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘9‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Laurent had glossy black hair and pale skin with a slight olive tone. He had a medium, slightly muscular frame and an easy smile.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: He did not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: He was once part of a coven with James and Victoria. He later formed an attachment to Irina in Denali.


Laurent was born into an aristocratic but financially embarrassed family during the reign of King Louis XIV. He was the third son, and he had little in the way of prospects. Thanks to his older brother‘s marriage into a more prosperous family, Laurent was recommended for a minor position in the court of the Sun King. Laurent loved being a part of the court and had ambitions to rise. He was always attracted to people with power, and curried their favor. He had a knack for discerning who the most important person was in any given grouping, and then attaching himself to that person. There was a certain way about Laurent that made anyone he singled out feel more important. So he did well among the other aristocrats, and had a promising future.

His life changed when a mysterious ambassador, purportedly from the Romanov court in Russia, made a diplomatic visit to the French court. The ambassador‘s strange behavior was attributed to cultural differences. He came out of his quarters only at night, kept a retinue of mute servants and soldiers who were totally obedient, and always put off discussions of matters of state. He did seem to enjoy the entertainments of the French court immensely and was very interested in King Louis‘s art collection.

Laurent was irresistibly drawn to the Russian ambassador, who seemed to Laurent to exude true power.

Laurent was irresistibly drawn to the Russian ambassador, who seemed to Laurent to exude true power. More even than the king himself, the Russian ambassador had no fear of any man.

The ambassador — a fun-loving Russian vampire named Boris who enjoyed human revelry — was flattered by the eager and admiring Laurent. He struck up a friendship with the French boy. When it was time for the Russian ambassador to leave (the number of vanished serving men and women was beginning to alarm many), he invited Laurent to go with him.

Laurent‘s love of the powerful made this an easy decision; his instincts told him that Boris was more powerful than anyone he‘d ever met.

Boris and Laurent became so close that eventually Boris told Laurent the truth about himself. Laurent begged to have the gift of power and immortality for himself. Boris was happy to comply.

For a while Boris and Laurent were companions, but Laurent quickly grew tired of Boris‘s jovial habits. Once Laurent was introduced to the vampire world, it was clear to him that there were others much more powerful than Boris.

The next relationship that changed Laurent‘s life was with Vladimir, one of the surviving Romanians. Vladimir still radiated some of the power he had once held, and Laurent‘s reaction to that power was predictable. He did not follow Vladimir for long — Stefan was opposed to adding any new vampires to their number, favoring mobility and secrecy over everything else—

but it was long enough. When he at last came in contact with the Volturi, he was already tainted.

The Volturi were the epitome of vampire power, exactly the kind of vampires Laurent wanted to be with. But when he was brought to Aro as a prospective lesser-guard applicant, Aro saw the brief encounter with the Romanians and sent him away as untrustworthy. Laurent was unaware that members of the Volturi followed him for a few decades, hoping he would lead them to Vladimir.

Laurent always hoped that someday he would get another chance to join the Volturi.

Laurent always hoped that someday he would get another chance to join the Volturi. He wandered the world, allying himself with anyone who seemed to have power until he found someone more powerful. In this way he joined James and Victoria: James‘s aura of invincibility was very attractive to Laurent.

Another change occurred in Laurent‘s life when he, James, and Victoria clashed with the Cullens. His instincts told him he was on the wrong side of that conflict, and he quickly jumped ship to ingratiate himself with the Cullens by warning them about James. Laurent was confused by Carlisle, who had a very different kind of authority than he was used to. He was happy to stay out of the way until James was no longer an issue, hoping to study Carlisle‘s strength later.

The Denali sisters proved an interesting distraction. Tanya had a similar kind of influence as Carlisle. Laurent let their peaceful life envelop him for a short while, and enjoyed a passing flirtation with Irina, though he did not take it as seriously as she did. When Victoria sought him out — and after he was sure she was not there to kill him — he was seduced anew by the old kind of command. He decided to keep the lines of communication open with her, and do her the one favor she asked of him.


“Nothing stops James when he gets started.” Twilight, Chapter 19

“I‟m surprised they left you behind. Weren‟t you sort of a pet of theirs?” New Moon, Chapter 10

“Sometimes I cheat.” New Moon, Chapter 10

NAME: Victoria


DATE OF TRANSFORMATION: Late 1560s, at approximately age 18



HAIR COLOR: Brilliant orange

EYE COLOR: Green (human); red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘6‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Victoria had a feline quality in the way she moved. Her eyes were fierce, and her orange hair was long and tousled, giving it the appearance of a flame.

Her voice was unusually high-pitched, like that of a child.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: She was exceptionally good at evading enemies.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: She was James‘s mate, and after his death she created her own coven of newborns.

With her shockingly bright hair, it was more difficult for Victoria to avoid notice than most, and she received extra beatings simply for being visible.


Victoria was born in London in the mid-sixteenth century. Her mother was a scullery maid and her father was the master of the house. Victoria was the second illegitimate child, after her sister, Anne. They were raised as servants and worked hard from early childhood. Neither of them had much in the way of education. Anne had the misfortune of being quite pretty, with mahogany hair and a cream and rose complexion. Like her mother, Anne was subjected to the attentions of the men of the house beginning early in her adolescence. Victoria, on the other hand, had bright red hair, freckles, and eyes a shade of green that people called ―witchy.‖

Though her features were actually quite fine, she was still thought of as ill-favored. Eventually the sisters were able to get jobs together in a very fine establishment, Anne as a lady‘s maid, Victoria as a kitchen drudge. The master of the house was not a kind man, quick to beat a servant for any perceived fault — and lecherous as well. Both sisters, along with the other help, grew adept at disappearing whenever possible. With her shockingly bright hair, it was more difficult for Victoria to avoid notice than most, and she received extra beatings simply for being visible.

She grew better at hiding, but when the master did catch her, he seemed irritated that she‘d evaded him for so long and was more vicious in his punishments.

Though the jobs kept them fed, the sisters decided to flee when Victoria was twelve.

Anne was very fond of her sister and feared for her life. It proved to be a bad decision. Without references, the girls were unable to find employment. They had no food and no shelter, and the cold season was coming. Anne finally agreed to work for a local pimp, on the condition that her sister could have free lodging with the other working girls. This situation was worse for Anne and nearly as bad for Victoria as the house they‘d run from; however, it was better than the streets of London. Thanks to the heavy-handed pimp, Victoria perfected her ability to disappear despite her hair.

One night Anne went out to find a client and never came home. Victoria was heartbroken. The pimp, angry at losing one girl, was determined that the remaining sister would earn her way. The pimp kept her virtually a prisoner while she ―learned her place.‖ With her ability to escape, however, it wasn‘t long before she broke free. This put her back in the cold. To keep from freezing or starving, she became a kind of cat burglar: sneaking into houses at night, curling up in small, hidden places to sleep, and stealing as little food as possible to keep her theft from being noticed. She moved from house to house, leaving no trace of her existence. Even dogs did not react to her presence.

When she was fifteen, she was able to get a real job again. Having overheard the firing of a scullery maid, she presented herself at the opportune time and her lack of references was overlooked. It was hard work, but stable, and she was not hit often. She was content with her position for the most part. Trouble didn‘t start again until the pimp spotted her one day, buying groceries, and tried to follow her home. She evaded him easily, but she realized that now that he knew she was alive, he would keep looking. She thought of leaving the city, but she wasn‘t sure she could make a living in the country.

Victoria was ecstatic to see her sister alive and wanted to embrace her, but Anne kept her distance, moving at a speed that shocked and silenced Victoria.

It was at that time that Anne found her. Victoria woke in the night to see Anne in her tiny attic room, standing over her. Anne was more beautiful than ever, though she‘d lost all the pink in her cheeks. Victoria was ecstatic to see her sister alive and wanted to embrace her, but Anne kept her distance, moving at a speed that shocked and silenced Victoria. Anne wanted to know if Victoria was happy and safe. Slowly at first, Victoria began to answer all of Anne‘s questions.

Anne was not satisfied with Victoria‘s predicament. She pondered aloud killing the pimp, but decided that he was only a small part of the problem. Victoria would never be safe until she was stronger than those who would hurt or control her. Anne asked Victoria if she would trust Anne‘s judgment. Victoria agreed. Anne picked Victoria up as if she were a doll and carried her out the attic window.

For a short while, Victoria was perfectly happy.

Apologizing first, Anne bit her sister. When Victoria revived from the transformation, she found herself in a beautiful country house, surrounded by four of the most beautiful women she had ever seen, including her sister. The other three were named Hilda, Mary, and Heidi, Heidi being by far the most beautiful of them all. Anne explained that Hilda, a nomadic German vampire, had saved her from her hard life out of pity, and then allowed her to go back for Victoria when she was able. The women, all with pasts similar to Anne‘s, were strong enough now to live as they wished, free from fear and abuse. For a short while, Victoria was perfectly happy. The coven of women coexisted easily because none of them craved power or authority.

Two years after Victoria joined them, Hilda ―rescued‖ another woman, Noela, who caught her fancy in the streets of Lisbon.

When Noela was still a newborn, the coven received a visit from the Volturi, led by Aro himself. With him were Caius, Jane, Chelsea, and a few of the more physical guards. Caius accused them of attracting too much human notice with their big coven of young, unruly newborns. Hilda defended her coven, maintaining that they had never introduced more than one newborn at a time, to be sure they could control them. Aro asked for evidence. Hilda agreed to prove her case with a handshake. After reading all her thoughts, Aro sadly claimed that the coven was guilty. Hilda angrily accused him of lying and was immediately slaughtered by the guards.

Jane inflicted pain on each of the others in quick succession, halting their instinctive attack. Aro wanted to know if anyone was willing to live by the law — or would they all have to be destroyed? Almost as if in a dream, Heidi got to her feet and moved forward. Aro smiled and welcomed her while her former covenmates watched in shock.

Victoria did not understand any of what she was watching, but she sensed that she and her sister were about to die whether they surrendered or not.

Victoria did not understand any of what she was watching, but she sensed that she and her sister were about to die whether they surrendered or not. She screamed for the others to run.

Anne, Mary, and Noela all scattered in different directions than the one she took. Victoria was surprised when Jane did not attack again, not knowing that the Volturi guard enjoyed a good chase. Anne, Mary, and Noela were all quickly caught and dispatched. None of the Volturi worried much when the redheaded girl proved impossible to find. She was unimportant; they could deal with her some other time. For now, Aro was happy to go home with his prize.

That was the end of Victoria‘s peaceful vampire life. Now suspicious of other vampires, she avoided them all. With her gift, it was not difficult, until James. In James she found someone who was honest in his intentions and confident in his abilities. She was attracted to his gift, which was like a mirror of her own. Eventually she fell in love with his self-assurance. It felt safe to her, stable in an odd way. She was never aware that his feelings did not entirely reflect her own. While she was happier with James, her life definitely was not peaceful or easy. The way he liked to live constantly put her into situations that, on her own, she would have avoided.

She was extremely paranoid for a time, setting up layers of protection for herself.

When the Cullens killed James, Victoria lost her mate and her stability. She felt vulnerable. She quickly created a companion, choosing a strong young human man. She made sure Riley was totally loyal to her, and was surprised at how readily he believed she had changed him out of love. Then she made more vampires, feeling that if she could surround herself with allies, she would be safe. At the same time, she hid herself from these new allies, aside from Riley. She was extremely paranoid for a time, setting up layers of protection for herself. She was loosely copying what she‘d seen with the Volturi guard, but waiting for her newborns to be old enough to train. In the meantime, she had Riley control them with carefully constructed lies—

most notably, the myth that vampires were destroyed by the sun.

In the first six months after James‘s death Victoria created fifteen newborns — and killed roughly four humans to every one that survived as a vampire. One of the first was Diego; one of the last — of this period — was Raoul. Fred was also created during this period. About half of this first wave did not survive during Victoria‘s absence.

Victoria‘s gift forewarned her when Edward was hunting her, just as it had with James.

She left Riley behind to mind the other newborns she‘d created. Passing through Texas, Victoria ran up against a territorial coven with a small force of newborns. Victoria had no interest in a pitched battle over land and escaped easily. The encounter gave her new ideas for her newborns, though. When she was sure she‘d thrown Edward off her trail, she headed back to the Pacific Northwest.

Victoria had not tried to avenge Anne; it wasn‘t in her nature to choose to put herself in danger.

Victoria had not tried to avenge Anne; it wasn‘t in her nature to choose to put herself in danger. However, her time with James had changed her in some ways. She was able to take slightly greater risks now. The newborns in Texas had inspired her to think beyond just protecting herself, to actively repaying Edward for what he‘d done to her. Her plans in regard to the newborns shifted: They were no longer to be a guard for her, but an army.

The more plans she put into motion, she thought, the more likely one of them would succeed. The newborns were one option, but one that — were she to use them that way — would require more of a head-on confrontation than she was totally comfortable with. Another of her plans included Laurent. She traced him to Alaska and, feigning friendship (like James, Victoria had not forgiven the defection), she was able to glean all the information he‘d learned about the Cullens from the Denalis. She asked him to do her a favor: Visit the Cullens and see if they were all still with the girl. It was win-win for Victoria; if Edward was back in Forks, she assumed he would kill Laurent when he saw the connection to Victoria in Laurent‘s head. If not, Laurent would bring back news of the girl‘s location and how many protected her.

Meanwhile, she created more newborns, leaving them under Riley‘s care, in case she ended up having to go through the full coven to get to the girl. After thinking carefully about Alice and her gift, Victoria put Riley in charge of making all the decisions about the newborns‘ movements. She made no plans to use the newborns for anything concrete. In fact, she thought about them as little as possible.

Laurent called Victoria once to report that the Cullen house was empty and he would look around to see if the girl had gone with them. She heard nothing more from Laurent. Very carefully, she went to investigate, and discovered the wolves. This was an unforeseen problem.

James had tracked a werewolf once, for the challenge of it. He‘d been successful, as usual. But werewolves were supposed to be nearly extinct, not traveling in large packs. Nor should they be able to maintain their wolf forms in the daylight. This was worrying, but secondary to the fact that Victoria had crossed a fresh trail left by the girl. The Cullens were gone, and all she had to do was get past the werewolves to find the girl totally alone.

This proved frustrating. With Victoria‘s powerful self-preservation instincts, it was nearly impossible for her to physically make a bold move. The wolves were able to drive her off again and again. She was patient, for she thought she had plenty of time. Then one night she caught Alice‘s scent and knew her hopes for an easy kill were over.

Riley and the newborns became her first priority. She created more and more of them, until Seattle was nearly overrun. Meanwhile, she continued making feints into the area around Forks, gathering information and hoping that the Cullens would believe these fruitless attacks were all she had up her sleeve.


“He‟s the liar, Riley. I told you about their mind tricks. You know I love only you.”

Eclipse, Chapter 24

The Mexican Coven

The Mexican coven was formed in the 1850s, its main purpose being to win back the land Maria had lost during the lesser hostilities that continued after the Volturi put an end to the Southern Wars. The coven lived on human blood and consisted mostly of often-replaced male newborns. Only Maria is presently a part of this coven.


NAME: Lucy




PLACE OF ORIGIN: Northern Texas


EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘6‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Lucy was thin, and taller than Nettie and Maria.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: She did not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: Lucy was part of Maria‘s coven, along with Nettie.


Lucy joined Maria and Nettie to further her ambitions. Her former coven — just her and her mate — had come under attack from another coven that was expanding its territory into northern Texas. Her mate was killed, but she escaped. She wanted a new hunting range, and the power to keep it. Maria had a good vision for how to accomplish that, so Lucy followed her lead.

After Lucy‘s new coven had established itself, Lucy and Nettie began to feel that Maria had too much power. They did not want to surrender their territory to her and seek another place, so they tried to kill her and her right-hand man, Jasper, instead. They underestimated Jasper‘s abilities, and Maria was able to surprise them with a preemptive attack. Lucy and Nettie were both killed.


NAME: Maria


DATE OF TRANSFORMATION: 1800s or earlier, at age 19




EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘1‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Maria is very short and small-boned. She has long black hair and a slight olive tone to her pale skin, denoting a darker skin pigmentation in her human life.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: She does not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: She formed a coven with Nettie and Lucy in the 1850s, and later added Jasper Whitlock after she transformed him in 1863. Eventually she killed Nettie and Lucy, and Jasper left her coven.


Before Maria‘s time, a young vampire named Benito, from Dallas, used the strength of newborn vampires on a massive scale to wipe out neighboring covens and take over their land.

Once other covens realized what was happening, they, too, created armies of newborns, to try to defeat Benito. The Volturi eventually had to step in to clean up the havoc these reckless armies had created in the South, destroying every newborn they could find. To serve as a deterrent to future newborn armies, anyone associated with the newborns was also executed.

When the Volturi returned to Italy, the survivors in the South quickly laid claim to the land. Before long, the covens began having border disputes and the wars resumed, but on a smaller scale. Newborns were used again, but more quietly. No one wanted to give the Volturi a reason to return.

It was during one of these battles that Maria lost her coven, which included her mate and two older vampires who were — for all intents and purposes — her parents. Along with them she lost control over Monterrey, Mexico, and the surrounding area. Defeated and alone, she looked for allies to help her get revenge. She found Nettie and Lucy, both of whom were survivors of other battles, and together they formed a coven. Maria‘s goal was to reclaim her land and exact vengeance; Nettie and Lucy hoped to gain more hunting territory.

Maria took newborn armies to a new level by choosing humans with combat potential and giving them more training than anyone had bothered to do before. When Maria met a young Confederate officer named Jasper Whitlock, she hoped his physical stature and military experience would make him a helpful addition to her army. She also sensed that there was something special about him, and her instincts were on target. After assessing his abilities, she put Jasper in charge of her other newborns. He was able to facilitate cooperation between the members of the group. Casualties dropped, and Maria‘s army swelled to around twenty newborns — a large number for that time. Even Nettie, Lucy, and Maria were able to work together more easily with Jasper around.

Maria grew fond of Jasper, depending on him more and more.

Thanks to her planning and Jasper‘s gifts, Maria‘s army was very successful. Maria grew fond of Jasper, depending on him more and more. Eventually Nettie and Lucy betrayed their alliance with Maria and planned to turn against her. Jasper was able to give Maria early warning, and she killed them both. Jasper became her only ally. However, she never treated him as an equal or thought of him as her mate. As was normal for the vampire temperament, Maria never forgot her deceased mate or moved on.

Several decades passed, and Maria noticed Jasper growing depressed. He was no longer interested in their lifestyle of conflict and acquisition. Maria grew paranoid that he might turn on her the way Nettie and Lucy had, and she made plans to destroy him first. She selected a few of the older, more promising newborns and plotted secretly with them, offering them Jasper‘s position and perks if they got him out of the way. Jasper was well aware of her shift in feelings toward him, and began making similar defensive plans against her with the newborns he most trusted. Before it came to that, however, Jasper found an alternative and left her coven for a new way of life in the North. Maria eventually forgave Jasper for his defection, and considers herself to be on good terms with him. She continues to zealously defend her territories in Mexico against interlopers.


“I truly hope you survive, Jasper. I have a good feeling about you.” Eclipse, Chapter 13


NAME: Nettie





HAIR COLOR: White blond

EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘3‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Nettie was petite, but taller than Maria.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: She did not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: Nettie was part of Maria‘s coven, along with Lucy.


Like Lucy and Maria, Nettie was the sole survivor of a lost battle. The two older males in her coven were destroyed, and Nettie was driven out of Arkansas. Maria and Lucy approached her and offered an alliance. Nettie wanted the safety of numbers, and she liked Maria‘s plan for a special newborn army. However, Nettie had less self-control than either Lucy or Maria, so she was not very involved with the creation of the newborns. It was Nettie who originally suggested to Lucy that they kill Maria and Jasper and take over the coven.

Riley‘s Coven

Riley was the only authority figure the newborns knew.

This coven of newborns was created by Victoria but controlled by Riley. Riley was the only authority figure the newborns knew. They lived in and around the city of Seattle and existed as a coven for less than a year. In their final organization as a newborn army, they became an illegal creation. None of the newborns knew of the Volturi laws that prohibited their lifestyle.

While Riley knew of the newborns‘ ultimate fate as an army, none of the other newborns were aware of this fact until a few days before the attack that ended in the demise of the coven. There were three survivors of the coven, who went on to become nomads; none of them were present for the attack against the Cullens.


NAME: Riley Biers

DATE OF BIRTH: October 8, 1986

DATE OF TRANSFORMATION: April 13, 2005, at age 18


PLACE OF ORIGIN: Santa Fe, New Mexico


EYE COLOR: Brown (human); red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 6‘3‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Riley was muscular and tall.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: He did not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: Riley managed a coven of newborns created by Victoria.


Riley was born in Santa Fe and lived in several places in the Southwest and along the Pacific coast during his childhood and adolescence. He lived with his parents and siblings — an older sister and a younger brother. He attended Oregon State University. One night near the end of his freshman year, Victoria saw him playing soccer with his intramural team. Victoria was panicked and seeking protection; Riley looked large and strong. She attacked him on his way home from the game. When he was lucid, she told him that she‘d been watching him and had fallen in love with him. Riley was awed by Victoria; he bought her story and quickly returned her perceived feelings for him.

Victoria told Riley many stories, half-truths, and outright lies, and Riley had no reason to disbelieve her.

Victoria told Riley many stories, half-truths, and outright lies, and Riley had no reason to disbelieve her. It was true that Victoria was scared and on the defensive; he could see that with his own eyes. She told him about her enemies, the Cullens, but gave him a false story about why they wanted to kill her, claiming she and her older sister, Anne, had trespassed on their territory, so they had killed Anne and hunted her still. She told him about the talents the Cullens possessed. Though this was the truest part of her story, Riley found it the hardest to believe.

When she decided to create more vampires to protect herself, Riley was initially jealous.

However, when she explained her plan, told him that the new vampires would never see her face or know her name, and asked him to choose them for her, he was appeased. Clearly, she had no desire for any romantic companionship besides Riley; she didn‘t even want any particular kind of human. She asked only that he choose humans who wouldn‘t be missed, or whose disappearance could be easily attributed to another source. The original plan, as Riley understood it, was for the new vampires to eventually be trained as a guard for himself and Victoria, after they were past their newborn wildness and were teachable. Victoria had the idea to tell the newborns that the sun could kill vampires, as was commonly believed by humans. She thought this would make them easier to control during the first year.

Victoria was very aware of the laws of the Volturi, and while she did not inform Riley of all of them, she did tell Riley about their existence, and about the necessity of keeping a low profile. She did not have him instruct the newborns about the Volturi; they agreed that until the newborns were old enough, there was no reason to overwhelm them with information. Riley never realized how similar he was to the other newborns, both in Victoria‘s opinion of him and in her treatment of him.

When Victoria sensed that she was being tracked, she decided to run rather than hope her unskilled newborns could protect her. She left Riley with instructions to keep the newborns as quiet as possible, and she disappeared.

Riley wanted to go with her and was unhappy to be left behind.

Riley wanted to go with her and was unhappy to be left behind. He worried that she would be killed, and he also worried that she would lose interest and never return for him. But he accepted her logic that, in the long run, the guard was worth the time investment. He grew friendly with some of the newborns in her absence; he enjoyed Diego‘s company in particular, though he was always entirely loyal to Victoria. Of course he did not find Fred easy to be around. He thought little of Raoul personally, but found him useful in organizing newcomers to the coven.

When Victoria returned, Riley was overjoyed. To Riley, her return meant that she really did love him. He was enthusiastic about her idea to act offensively by creating an army, rather than maintaining a guard for an indefinite amount of time while she waited for her enemies to come after her again. She told him of the necessity of not making decisions and instructed him to keep watch for any possible talents in their army.

Newborn production went into high gear, which meant that Riley was not with Victoria as often. He was busy containing the newborns and searching out more humans whose disappearances would attract little notice. Riley was unaware of Victoria‘s trip to see Laurent, or of her repeated attempts to get into Forks. Victoria did not tell him about the werewolf problem she‘d observed.

As the army stabilized at around twenty members, Riley felt like the time had come to strike.

As the army stabilized at around twenty members, Riley felt like the time had come to strike. He was frustrated that Victoria still wavered. He wanted to train the newborns, particularly the older ones, so that they could fight more effectively. He and Victoria discussed training methods, but she was afraid that putting the training into action would alert Alice. Her hesitance to strike upset Riley; until they got rid of the Cullens, they couldn‘t really be together.

He wondered how committed to him Victoria actually was.

Victoria sent him to Forks to obtain the scent of the Cullens‘ pet human for a few reasons. First, if she did decide to attack, it would mark her true target. Second, she knew of Riley‘s impatience and felt this assignment would make him think they were moving forward.

Third, and most important, she wanted to test Alice‘s ability without putting herself in danger. If Riley was instructed to make no contact with the Cullens or any humans in Forks, if he was committed to doing no damage and remaining unseen, would Alice know he was coming?

Victoria was thrilled to find out that the answer was no. The more she could learn about Alice‘s ability — and the flaws in her visions — the better she could know how to proceed.

When the Volturi visited, Riley was terrified but also relieved. He did not understand that he and Victoria were in trouble not just for the attention the newborns had gotten in the news, but also for a truly illegal creation. He just knew that now he would get to act. And once the Cullens were destroyed, he wouldn‘t have to take care of newborns all the time; he could be with Victoria.

Over the course of his time as warden to the newborns, two vampires, Doug and Adam, had discovered the truth about the sun. Victoria had told him to bring any newborns who knew the truth to her. At first he was shocked and a little frightened when he learned that the penalty for this knowledge was death. However, once Victoria explained what it would do to the coven if all the newborns knew the truth, it made sense. He used the disappearance of Doug and Adam to reinforce the idea that the sun was deadly. He did the same with the disappearances of Steve and Shelly, though those two had simply run away together. When Diego came to Riley and told him about the sun, Riley was disturbed. He hoped that, given the situation with the Volturi, Victoria might reconsider and let Diego live. He knew Diego could keep the secret. However, Victoria‘s response was even worse than he‘d feared.

After it was over she and Riley would run fast and far, until the Volturi got tired of chasing them.

The next few hours changed Riley. Victoria made him choose between being with her and saving Diego‘s life. Riley chose Victoria and refused to acknowledge the feeling that he had chosen wrong. Victoria was high-strung and paranoid after the Volturi‘s visit. She insisted on extracting as much information as possible from Diego. In the end, Diego told her everything that he and Bree suspected. Riley was horrified by her actions and the things she made him do, but because he loved her he had to find a way to reconcile who she was with what he loved. He had to close himself off to his feelings of pity and humanity. He tried to enjoy Diego‘s pain the way she obviously did. Victoria was pleased with the change. Now that she felt Riley had proven himself, she told him the truth — mostly — about the coming battle. The majority of the newborns would be slaughtered before the Cullens were destroyed. She would not join the fight; she would observe to make sure the right members of the Cullen clan were destroyed. If a chance presented itself, she would act. After it was over she and Riley would run fast and far, until the Volturi got tired of chasing them. She lied about only a few things — including who her real target was, and that Riley would be escaping with her.

Riley did well in his last days with the newborns. He was able to manipulate them into exactly the mindset Victoria wanted. He did not entirely understand why the focus should be on the human girl — Victoria said the Cullens would be less effective if they were trying to protect the human — but he primed them perfectly. His only failure was in losing Fred; of course, in the end, he couldn‘t remember that he‘d lost him. After sending the newborns on their way, he met up with Victoria at the rendezvous point she‘d chosen. She told him that a key member of the coven had hidden to avoid the fight, and together they were going to make sure he didn‘t survive.


NAME: Diego

DATE OF BIRTH: November 1987

DATE OF TRANSFORMATION: July 2005, at age 17


PLACE OF ORIGIN: Los Angeles, California


EYE COLOR: Brown (human); bright red/black (newborn vampire) HEIGHT: 6‘0‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Diego had thick, curly hair and a faint olive tone to his vampire skin. He was lean but muscular.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: He did not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: Diego belonged to Riley‘s coven of newborns.


Diego grew up in a lower-class, single-parent home in Los Angeles. He lived with his mother and younger brother. When he was sixteen, his mother relocated to Portland for a job that then fell through. Diego worked part-time jobs to help out while he went to school. He was determined to go to college, and to help his younger brother get an education as well. Diego had some trouble with a gang at his high school, but he did his best to avoid them. He was furious when he found out that the same gang was pursuing his younger brother. He tried to convince his brother to stay away from them, and he talked with his mother about switching his brother to a different school. Before they could come up with a plan to remove his brother from the situation, his brother was killed in an initiation ritual.

Diego went crazy with grief. He stole a gun from the house of one of the gang members.

He‘d learned who was actually responsible for his brother‘s death, and he tracked him down and fatally shot him. The other members of the gang came after Diego. They had him cornered when Riley interceded.


NAME: Fred; nickname: ―Freaky Fred‖

DATE OF BIRTH: April 1985

DATE OF TRANSFORMATION: August 2005, at age 20


PLACE OF ORIGIN: Vancouver, British Columbia


EYE COLOR: Blue (human); bright red/black (newborn vampire) HEIGHT: 6‘2‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Fred is tall and broad-shouldered.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: He has the ability to make anyone feel physically repulsed. He can use this ability to make someone unable to think of him for a period of time.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: Fred belonged to Riley‘s coven of newborns; he is currently a nomad.

He embraced being a science nerd and related to others academically but not socially.


Fred grew up with his father; his parents divorced when Fred was ten. His mother remarried and had three children, half-siblings whom Fred rarely saw. Fred‘s father was not very expressive, and Fred found that the only way to communicate with his father was through logic rather than emotion. Fred had a natural inclination toward the sciences, which his father encouraged. In elementary school he was bullied occasionally because he was thin and wore thick glasses. In high school Fred grew very tall, but he was awkward and gangly. He embraced being a science nerd and related to others academically but not socially. He tried to avoid attention, and hated to be singled out except in the classroom. Eventually, Fred received a scholarship to Stanford University. Physically, he had gotten past his awkward stage and was quite attractive, but he was oblivious to this. After his sophomore year, he volunteered for a special research project offered by his favorite marine biology professor. Fred spent the majority of the summer on remote beaches along the Oregon and Washington coast, camping for the most part. It was a solitary trip, and he went several days at a time without seeing another person.

Riley found him on one of those beaches and imagined that Fred‘s disappearance would seem quite explicable. He asked Fred if he was interested in some excitement. Fred said no, but Riley didn‘t take no for an answer.

Fred is one of three newborns who survived the rest of the coven‘s demise; he went on to become a solitary nomad.


NAME: Raoul

DATE OF BIRTH: October 8, 1988

DATE OF TRANSFORMATION: September 2005, at age 16




EYE COLOR: Brown (human); bright red/black (newborn vampire) HEIGHT: 5‘10‖


SPECIAL ABILITIES: He had a limited ability to make others view him as their leader.

It worked best on those who were directionless.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: Raoul belonged to the coven of newborns managed by Riley.


Raoul grew up in southern Texas. He lived with his mother and five siblings. He became very involved in an expanding drug-running gang. Despite his youth, he rose quickly through the gang‘s ranks. When he was fifteen, he shot three members of a competing gang. To keep him from falling into the hands of the law, his gang sent him to Seattle to manage a new branch of the organization. There he excelled, particularly at recruiting new members. Riley found him beating a client who was behind on payments. Riley asked Raoul if he was interested in some real power.

Wary but intrigued, Raoul answered yes.


NAME: Bree Tanner

DATE OF BIRTH: March 11, 1990

DATE OF TRANSFORMATION: March 11, 2006, at age 16


PLACE OF ORIGIN: Las Vegas, Nevada

HAIR COLOR: Dark brown

EYE COLOR: Brown (human); bright red/black (newborn vampire) HEIGHT: 5‘1‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Bree had a slight build.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: She did not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: Bree belonged to Riley‘s coven of newborns.

Bree believed that her mother left her abusive father when Bree was four; in fact, Bree‘s father murdered her mother.


Bree was born in Nevada, but lived in Idaho for most of her life. Bree believed that her mother left her abusive father when Bree was four; in fact, Bree‘s father murdered her mother.

He buried the body in the desert, then packed up and moved to Idaho with his young daughter.

Because of the abuse, Bree felt isolated from her peers. She was a quiet, withdrawn girl. No one ever noticed the signs of her abusive home life, despite some physical evidence. Finally, Bree ran away from home a few weeks before her sixteenth birthday. She had enough money for the bus ride to Seattle, but nothing more. She tried unsuccessfully to get a job, and began stealing in order to eat. She slept in parks and alleys — wherever she could find a place that felt a little bit safe. Her biggest fear was that the police would catch her and send her home to her father. She‘d been on the run for less than three weeks when Riley found her digging through a trash bin behind a restaurant.

What Bree never knew was that her mother‘s body had been discovered outside of Las Vegas, and the police tracked down her father a few months after she ran away. When he could not produce Bree, he was tried and found guilty of both murders.


ADAM After discovering that the sun does not injure vampires, Adam revealed his discovery to Riley. He was killed by Victoria.

CASEY Known to Bree as the ―Spider-Man kid,‖ Casey was a recruit suggested to Riley by Raoul, who had worked with him when they were human.

DOUG Doug was the first newborn to discover that the sun did not harm vampires. He went to Riley with his breakthrough and was killed by Victoria.

JEN Jen was Kristie‘s closest colleague.

KEVIN A member of Raoul‘s faction, Kevin was Raoul‘s second in command. Kevin was a part of Raoul‘s human gang, too, and was taken by Riley upon Raoul‘s suggestion. Riley asked Kevin if he wanted to join Raoul.

KRISTIE Kristie was Raoul‘s main competitor in the newborn coven. She did not have his ability to gain followers through magnetism alone, but she was smarter than Raoul, and better able to manipulate others.

SARAH Sarah did not like working closely with any of the other newborns, but she preferred Kristie‘s crowd to Raoul‘s.

SHELLY AND STEVE Shelly and Steve formed a romantic attachment in the early weeks of their newborn life. After a few months, they decided to abandon the newborn coven.

They are currently nomads.

The Romanian Coven




The Romanian coven dominated the vampire world until it was overthrown by the Volturi, between 400 and 500 A.D. Only two members of the original Romanian coven survive.


NAME: Stefan




PLACE OF ORIGIN: Dacia (Proto-Romania)

HAIR COLOR: Dark brown

EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘3‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Stefan is slight and short. He has powdery skin like that of the Volturi, but his eyes are not clouded.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: He does not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: He and Vladimir are the last surviving members of their coven.


Stefan was one of the original twelve ruling members of what is now known as the Romanian coven. (Romania did not exist as a country at the time of the coven‘s inception; that area of Eastern Europe was known as Dacia.)

The Romanians were formed in a way similar to the Volturi: A group of ambitious vampires called a truce to the usual squabbling between small covens and then joined forces for the purpose of gaining power. This prevailing desire to rule allowed them to overcome their competitive drives and cooperate.

The eventual downfall of the Romanians was their focus on physical strength. They created a guardlike entity — a pattern later copied by the Volturi — composed entirely of vampires like Felix and Emmett. Perhaps because none of the ruling members of the coven possessed supernatural abilities themselves, they underestimated the advantage such abilities could give them in battle. They ignored talented vampires in favor of brute strength. This blind spot was understandable, as no one had ever used talents the way the Volturi eventually did. Talents have also grown stronger over the centuries; the talents exhibited by vampires during the Romanian rule were not as potent as the talents that developed in modern times. Much of that is due to vampires learning to seek out talented humans to transform, and also understanding how to focus and improve their talents after the transformation. Aro‘s innovative focus on talent over strength was the reason the Volturi were able to defeat the Romanians, though it took them more than a century, and they never wiped them out completely.

Stefan and Vladimir both lost mates to the Volturi — Stefan during the third decade of the initial battle — ensuring that their drive for vengeance would never fade.

Stefan and Vladimir both lost mates to the Volturi — Stefan during the third decade of the initial battle — ensuring that their drive for vengeance would never fade. They are always searching for ways to discomfit or damage the Volturi. They are particularly bitter toward Jane and Alec, who were not involved in the original war but strengthened the Volturi to the point of invincibility, making it impossible for the Romanians to exact their revenge.

Every few decades, the Volturi send Demetri and others after the remaining Romanians, so Stefan and Vladimir are constantly on the move and always on their guard. If the Volturi focused their efforts, they would be able to wipe Stefan and Vladimir out, but since the two pose little threat, the Volturi have never committed their assets to a drawn-out chase.


“We‟ve been waiting a millennium and a half for the Italian scum to be challenged. If there is any chance they will fall, we will be here to see it.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 32


NAME: Vladimir




PLACE OF ORIGIN: Dacia (Proto-Romania)

HAIR COLOR: Ashy blond

EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 5‘4‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Vladimir is slight and short. He has papery skin similar to that of the Volturi, and his hair is so blond it appears almost white. Unlike the Volturi, his eyes are a clear, dark red.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: He does not possess a quantifiable supernatural ability.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: He is part of a coven with Stefan.


Like Stefan, Vladimir was one of the original twelve ruling members of the Romanian coven. Vladimir was the head of a coven of four — large by normal vampire standards — when he joined forces with the other Romanian vampires. His big, successful coven was one of the inspirations for the notion of coexistence to pursue power.

They ruled over humans and vampires alike, demanding slave labor and copious human sacrifice.

During their rule — which lasted nearly a thousand years — the Romanians lived brazenly and decadently. For thousands of miles in every direction, they were known and feared. They ruled over humans and vampires alike, demanding slave labor and copious human sacrifice.

Occasionally humans would create armies to try to overthrow what they considered to be beautiful demon overlords, but of course all such attacks were futile, resulting in an easy feast for the Romanians. Obedient humans were spared death, if not labor, and a few lucky individuals pleased the Romanians enough to earn immortality.

Vampires were a well-known fact in the human world when the Volturi began to rise.

Their contention that vampires should conceal their existence was scoffed at.

After the Volturi had defeated the Romanians, the Volturi copied many aspects of the Romanians‘ way of life — the formation of a permanent guard, the stationary home, and the eschewing of hunting in favor of prey being rounded up and delivered to them. The difference was that they did all of these things while remaining invisible to humans.

Only Stefan and Vladimir, who were planning to spring a trap for the expected Volturi retreat, escaped.

Unlike Stefan‘s, Vladimir‘s mate survived the initial overthrow of the Romanians. She was killed around 810 A.D., during the last of many attempts the Romanians made during the centuries to regroup, repopulate, and topple the Volturi. The Romanians had amassed an army of more than a hundred new recruits and were confident that the Volturi would fall. This ill-fated assault occurred a decade after Aro had acquired Jane and Alec. It was the first time Aro displayed their talents in battle. The Romanians were decimated. Only Stefan and Vladimir, who were planning to spring a trap for the expected Volturi retreat, escaped. After this, Vladimir and Stefan made no further attempt to create more vampires for their coven. They decided to disappear until the Volturi weakened or another power presented itself.


“Now the Volturi‟s eyes are filmed with dusty scum, but ours are bright. I imagine that will give us an advantage when we gouge theirs from their sockets.” Breaking Dawn, Chapter 33

The Nomads

Many vampires prefer to roam the world on their own or with a single partner. These vampires are known as nomads.


NAME: Alistair

DATE OF BIRTH: Around 1300

DATE OF TRANSFORMATION: Around 1320, at approximately 20




EYE COLOR: Red/black (vampire)

HEIGHT: 6‘2‖

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Alistair is tall and slender.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: Alistair can track both people and things. He can sense the general direction of whatever he is looking for, but it takes him a long time to narrow this feeling down to a specific location. If whatever he‘s seeking is on the move, he may never catch up.

FAMILY/COVEN RELATIONSHIPS: He prefers to wander alone.


Alistair grew up in England during the turbulent reign of Edward II, considered the weakest of the Plantagenet kings. Alistair‘s father was one of the barons who continually fought against Edward‘s attempts to limit the power of the British Peerage. Throughout Alistair‘s youth, his father and older brother were embroiled in conspiracy after conspiracy as they tried to protect the rights of the aristocracy while also trying to gain a place of preeminence over the other barons.

Alistair lived quietly at the family‘s country estate with his mother and sisters. He had no interest in his father‘s schemes. Alistair loved to hunt for sport and was considered the best hunter in the county. He was also an avid falconer. He kept many falcons, and training them was his favorite pursuit. He loved his birds and spent more time with them than with people.

Unknown to Alistair, his father formed an alliance with two other barons after the banishment of the king‘s favorite counselor. Their object was to get Alistair‘s older brother placed in that vacated position, and thereby control the weak king. Some of the other barons had the same idea, but with their own champions. After multiple betrayals on all sides, Alistair‘s brother was implicated in a plot to overthrow the king, and he and a few others were executed for treason. The charges were mostly false, created by another powerful aristocrat with an agenda that differed from Alistair‘s father‘s.

Losing his precious heir pushed Alistair‘s father over the edge. The baron‘s anger against the king became deeply personal and slightly deranged.

Losing his precious heir pushed Alistair‘s father over the edge. The baron‘s anger against the king became deeply personal and slightly deranged. He began plotting to actually do what his son had been executed for. He felt he could no longer trust his old allies. He began to explore ever darker sources of aid, becoming deeply involved with the occult.