Because Jem, Will and Tessa are locked in the purest form of love triangle I have ever read. Ever.
Yes there have been love triangles in other books—The Hunger Games, Twilight, Percy Jackson—but it was so obvious who was going to make it in the end, resulting in one of the two contenders dying, or becoming celibate, or turning out to be a jerk, or falling in love with the winning couple’s daughter…
(Sentences I never thought I’d have to write…)
But Clare hasn’t done any of that. She has created three characters who dearly love each other, and the romantic side of things is the thorn in everyone’s side.
I can’t imagine Will without Jem. Or Jem without Tessa. Or Tessa without Will. Or any of the reverse. They are perfect for each other, in all the ways they should be. Will shares Tessa’s love of books and through his exuberance treats Jem like a real person. Jem shows great kindness to both Will and Tessa, loving them for who they are despite their personal doubts (Will’s curse and Tessa’s identity). And Tessa clearly cares for both of them, sympathizing with both of their struggles and hates being the cause of their pain and happiness simultaneously. These three complement each other so well.
Which makes it so difficult to keep going through this endless circle of romance. Because Tessa can’t be with both of them. And if Jem knew that Will was in love with her, he’d probably drop Tessa in a heartbeat for his sake. Will already has.
But that’s part of the problem. They can’t simply undo their feelings. Tessa can’t disappear and then Jem and Will would be back to their brotherly parabatai selves. They need her in their lives, and she needs them too.
I love how Clare has written this, mostly because there is no easy answer. This is how love triangles should be written. I actually pity these characters. I try to reason out ways for it to work and it just can’t. They only thing I can come up with is that Tessa is immortal so eventually she won’t have to deal with either of them—which is just upsetting because then both Jem and Will are gone and I like both of them.
Scratch that. I like all three of them.
Which is why this is probably the best love triangle ever.