WIP of the Week: 6/18/12

June 19, 2012

Perchance to Dream by NTJB
Review by evilnat

Rating: M
Genre: Drama
Characters: Edward & Bella

Summary: Bella Swan and Edward Cullen fall in love, deeply in love. But as their lives spiral out of control, Bella begins to realize that it might be too deep and questions whether it was love at all or something more dangerous...

Perchance to Dream starts off with a prologue that proves from the start that we’re certainly going to see some drama in this story. We begin in the present, Bella struggling with her decision to leave Edward; she is determined to get out on her own. Her relationship with Edward is like an addiction, one that she needs to end, before it totally ruins her.

Have you ever been at a point in your life when you need to be free and you can't? When everywhere you turn you see one wall after another, thicker than steel and higher than the sky? A life that resembles a maximum security prison more than your own damn life? 

I think I've been at that point twice. The first time was when I was stuck in the smallest town on the planet, Forks, Washington. I was there for three dreadful teenage years with my dad and hated every moment of it. 

The day I graduated was the best damn day of my life. It was also the day I promised myself I would never be in that circumstance again. I left Forks about a month after graduation, to college in NYC. The perfect city to be free to build myself and be who I wanted... or so I thought. 

So today, after all that I have done to leave the restraints behind, I'm here again: bound, veritably gagged, and blindfolded by my life. I have nowhere to go, nothing to see, no one to turn to. It's so much worse than it was before. Three years ago, there was a way out. I could always envision the road I would take to escape. Now, there is no road; there are only walls. 

But, here's the crazy thing. You ready for this? I am the only person who could break me out of this prison. Hell, it's not even a real prison! It's all in my goddamn head. I don't even know where the walls begin and where they end, but I do know that for years, I've been seeking the wrong means for release. 

Chapter one takes us back in time to tell her story. Bella’s a student who can barely afford to live, she lives in an insect infected apartment and doesn’t have much of a social life. She’s kind of melancholy, it’s like she’s existing but not really living.

For one of her classes she is given an assignment where she must choose a Shakespearean play and compare it with a film. She chooses Hamlet and as luck would have it, The New School has a production of Hamlet showing, so she decides to drag her old friend, Jake, who happens to be visiting that weekend from Forks.

Jessica Stanley is Bella’s academic rival. Jessica is always been right there, enrolled in at least two of her classes each year, competing against her for whatever academic accolade she can get. Bella detests her and their banter is bitchy and Jessica is blatantly mean. She always seems to appear right when you think Bella’s gotten rid of her and its obvious she has something going on with one of their professors. She tells Bella that the top two scores on the Shakespearean class assignment will be recommended for an internship at The New Yorker. Not knowing if this is true or not, but not willing to bet against Jessica, seeing as she has inside information with the professor, Bella is determined to write the best paper she can. She needs this internship.

Jake is cryptic about why he’s visiting Bella and even though she tries to get it out of him she has no idea what would bring him to NYC guessing that he might have been signed by a record company. Bella and his girlfriend, Leah, don’t get along, but he shows up with her anyway much to Bella’s annoyance.

We don’t meet Edward until chapter four when Bella takes Jake and Leah to see Hamlet and he is the lead actor. She’s seen his picture on the playbill and the advertisement put out by the NYU newsletter and even dreamed about him, but to see him in person, on the stage leaves her mesmerized.

I was transfixed by him, just like I felt when I saw his picture in the newsletter. No one else existed. In fact, I felt like I didn't exist. 

His eyes shone like beacons and his voice was a rich baritone that echoed across the seats. He had a British accent like the other actors, but this one was believable. Was he British, really? Fuck, this was like my dream guy come true. There was nothing sexier than a British accent. 

He moved so comfortably around the stage as if it were his home or even a temple. And the black period costume fit him perfectly, like a condom... er, a glove. When I wasn't captivated by his eyes, I was staring at his tights. 

He stood a little left of center near the end of the soliloquy, looking into the audience as if he were speaking to everyone in the front row. I began to feel like sitting in the fourth row was hell in comparison. Thinking of the audience pulled me out of the shock from his presence. And as Horatio, Marcellus and Bernardo entered stage left, I exhaled... and heard the two girls in front of me exhale as well. 

Whoa, what was that? What the fuck was that? What was going on with me? 

I shook my head, barely paying attention to the rest of the scene. I hardly remembered any of his soliloquy. I was lost through the rest of Act I and grateful for the two minute break before Act II. The last thing that I could remember was how well his tights fit him. 

Edward forgets one of his lines in the next act, and Bella, much to the embarrassment of Jake, stands up and recites it to him. She can’t help herself, there’s something about him. She runs out of the theatre to get some air, mortified, when Edward calls to her from the front door of the theatre.

"Wait!" From a voice to make all hearts cease beating... in an accent to make all panties melt. "Don't leave." 

I turned around slowly, the smoke from the guy smoking before clouding my vision of him... of his brilliant eyes. I squinted through it, trying to make sure. Then, the wind picked up, clearing it all away. 

I gaped in disbelief. Edward Cullen. He stood at the doorway, out of breath, still in costume, hesitantly taking a couple of steps toward me. 

His eyes were more brilliant now than they had ever been. They were brighter than beacons, beaming directly into my soul. 

"Stay. Please?" 

 And so begins the rollercoaster that is Bella and Edward’s relationship. Things with him are not simple. He’s a serious actor, trying to make it and he’s got issues of his own.

There are a lot of layers to Bella’s story and with each chapter we unravel another. Things aren’t smooth sailing for her, in her studies and in her relationships. With 23 chapters and over 106,000 words you’ve got a lot of story to sink your teeth into.


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