Bella Swan is a seventeen-year-old girl who leaves her home in Phoenix, Arizona to live with her father, Charlie, in Forks, Washington. As Bella settles in, she laments on the rainy weather and tries not to be nervous about starting at a new school. Bella is afraid that she won’t fit in, as she is pale, uncoordinated, and doesn’t relate well to people her age.
When she arrives at the school many students are eager to befriend her, interested in the novelty of a new student. As she eats lunch with her new friends she notices a strangely gorgeous group of students sitting by themselves. The students are pale with dark shadows under their eyes, but absolutely beautiful and well dressed. Jessica, one of Bella’s tablemates, tells her that they are a family: Edward, Emmett, and Alice Cullen, and Rosalie and Jasper Hale. Jessica informs her that the five were adopted by a young doctor and his wife. One of the Cullens, Edward, looks over, and Jessica tells her that Edward, though gorgeous, does not date.
In Biology, Bella finds that Edward is her lab partner. However, he greets her with an antagonistic stare and sits rigid in his seat, as far away from her as possible looking repulsed. When class is over, as Bella worries about Edward’s behavior, another boy, Mike, shows her to her next class. At the end of the day, Bella encounters Edward again in the office, and Edward makes a hasty retreat as soon as he sees her. She leaves for home upset and confused.