Chapter Notes

Chapter 1: Mortality

1. “Ithaca is Gorges” is the slogan of the city of Ithaca, NY, because Ithaca is a) surrounded by natural gorges and waterfalls and whatnot which b) makes it a really gorgeous locale. You see the saying on t-shirts and stuff like you see “I Heart NY” around Manhattan. When I thought about writing the Cullens’ time in Ithaca, the saying came immediately as the title, both because it represents Ithaca the place and because for the Cullens, Ithaca really is symbolic of a time when their family was rent apart like a chasm in the earth. So Ithaca is Gorges it is.

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Chapter 5: Primum Non Nocere

Primum non nocere </i>is Latin for ‘first, not to harm.’ Although the phrase is technically no longer in the modern Hippocratic oath taken by new physicians, this principle from Hippocrates’ teachings on the ethics of medicine has come to stand for ethical medical practice.

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Chapter 6: C. C.

1. Old English for ‘happy guard’ is ead waerd. The phrase was the basis for a popular English given name.

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Chapter 8: Intent to Kill

1. The Greek word menis, which means ‘wrath,’ is the first word of Homer’s The Iliad.

2. The idea that Edward would enjoy hearing the minds of college students is borrowed from thatwritr’s In the Blink of an Eye. I thank Katie for her permission to make reference to it.

3. Edward standing outside an Episcopalian church is a nod both to “Beauty, Shining in Company” by minisinoo, as well as a nod to Carlisle himself. The Episcopalian Church is the U.S. incarnation of the Anglican Communion, otherwise known as the Church of England. So by standing outside an Anglican Church, Edward is drawing on his father’s faith even from afar.

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Chapter 9: In Giving

1. I wish that I could lay claim to the perfect idea that Carlisle worships on the Solstice. However, the original idea is not mine-it comes from blondieAKARobin’s Dark Side of The Moon, chapter 12, “Adeste Fideles.” Blondie was quite kind to give me permission to give her idea a full life in Ithaca.

2. The prayer which Esme asks Carlisle to pray is known as the Prayer of St. Francis of Assisi. It can be traced back to an anonymous author from Normandy around 1912 and became popular during WWI. It was used most famously in morning prayer by Mother Teresa of Calcutta, who requested it be recited at the ceremony when she received the Nobel Peace Prize. Looking at its stanzas, I often feel that Carlisle would have written a similar prayer himself. (The chapter title is from the line “For it is in giving that we receive.”)

3. A PICC line is a catheter that is installed into the upper arm of a patient to ease the administration of intravenous medication. A sphygmomanometer is the device that measures blood pressure.

4. Bluing is a household product used to improve the appearance of white fabric. Essentially a very light blue dye, it would be added to the wash water so that white fabric that would otherwise appear yellowish or gray would appear blue-white, which we perceive as looking “cleaner.” It was commonly in use in the late nineteenth century-which might well have been the last time Jasper actually had to think about laundry!

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Chapter 10: Spitfire

1. The California Perfume Company was the original name of the company that would become Avon Products. They began selling door-to-door in the 1910s, and by the early twenties had sales forces all over the United States. They became known as Avon in 1939.

2. The New Orleans Mardi Gras celebration typically draws half to a quarter of a million people to the city for several weeks of crazy revelry. The events in Ithaca take place in 2005-2006, which means that Edward would have been in New Orleans for the first Mardi Gras after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. While attendance was lower that year (around 400,000), the party was a little crazier as everyone was celebrating the city’s recovery from the hurricane. The neighborhood where Edward finds Maria is the Lower Ninth Ward, a low-income neighborhood that was immediately adjacent to one of the major levee breaks. Water levels in parts of the neighborhood reached over ten feet, and many residents had to be airlifted from their rooftops. Many others lost their lives. As Edward “predicted,” many of the homes in this neighborhood were eventually razed, and many others still sit empty and in serious disrepair. To this day, only about 11% of the former residents have been able to return.

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Chapter 14: Fathers and Brothers

1. The language the Volturi were speaking, which Edward did not understand, was the Etruscan language. It’s a dead language, and all its relative languages in its language family, Tyrsenian, have died as well, which is why it sounded so unfamiliar to someone born in 1901. Although there are certainly several historical inaccuracies about the age of the Volturi and their being Etruscan in the first place, I’m running with what SM gave us, even when it’s a little strange. Many thanks to minisinoo for providing the information on this one and inspiring that little scene.

2. I hope I made this apparent from context, but just in case anyone is confused as to why Aro didn’t call Bella la tua cantante—“La tua” is “your” (literally “the your.”) He’s referring to Edward in the third person, so he calls Bella la sua cantante—“his.” Thanks to NadiaCullen for the help with the Italian!

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§ 2 Responses to Chapter Notes"

  • Krista says:

    You know, I re-read Twilight every year or so, and the bones of the saga are good, but I often find that Meyer’s prose doesn’t quite reach the emotional depth I’m looking for. For me as a reader, the intensity of feeling for each character seems hinted at, but not truly captured on the page in her books. This, Ithaca is Gorges…this is what I was missing. I’ve read New Moon most frequently (it speaks to me the most strongly), but reading your version, I was wrenched into the story. I sobbed along with Carlisle and Esme when I realized Edward, Bella and Alice were coming back alive from Volterra. I wept for them, and I wept for the losses in my own life, and also for the joys. If art is, as some have said, how we learn to know others and ourselves…I have, here, found some small piece of what I’ve been seeking.

    • giselle says:

      Thank you for reading, Krista! That’s always what I’m striving for…I own fully that I loved these stories and these characters, despite what flaws the books had, and I want what I do to tie in to their stories in a way that is seamless and makes sense and enriches who these people (because they are people to me) are.

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