After the phenomenal success of The Twilight Saga, fans had high hopes for the follow-up. In the years since its premiere in 2012, the vampire movie has become something of a cult classic, with numerous sequels, prequels, and remake announcements. But while the world was waiting for the next installment, something happened that threatened to unravel everything: Robert Pattinson, the film’s young star, had to be rescued by cops from an apparently delusional fan who believed the former actor was going to kill him. Thanks to the efforts of British and American authorities, the actor was returned to safety and security – but not before he suffered multiple bites and claw marks. While we wait for the next Twilight installment (rumored to be titled New Moon and set for release in 2014), let’s rewind the clock to discover how this story all began.

The Dark Side Of Stardom

Before we begin, it’s important to establish that this wasn’t your ordinary run-of-the-mill stalker crisis. As the Daily Mail reports, the 41-year-old actress is no ordinary fan, having followed the actor from Hollywood to London to become his personal assistant. But since the beginning of this year, she’s taken matters into her own hands, enlisting the help of a private detective agency to track him down and bring him back to Los Angeles.

So it’s not that Robert Pattinson is a mere celebrity – he’s a target of obsession. As the Mail points out, this isn’t the first time that the actor has been the focus of crazed fandom. Back in 2003, he was assaulted by a crazed Twilight fan who tried to strangle him with a telephone cord.

While we don’t know exactly why this level of obsession has arisen around Pattinson, it’s likely that the actor’s decision to step away from the limelight has had something to do with it. Despite his massive celebrity, the Twilight saga doesn’t offer an easy ride to fame. In the years since its premiere, the actor has rarely given interviews, rarely appeared in public, and has spent his time holed up in his home with his guitar.

The Unraveling

In the meantime, while everyone was distracted by the drama with Kristen Stewart, more than a few people noticed another strange story unfolding on social media. On January 2, 2014, Robert Pattinson posted an ominous message on his Twitter account, seemingly confirming the worst:

I need some time off work. I don’t know how much. I might disappear for a while.

Since then, the tweet has been retweeted more than 13,000 times and favorited by over 11,000 people.

Was Pattinson just playing a prank? Did he really need some time off work and want to disappear? Did he feel threatened by Stewart’s fans? We may never know. But what we do know is that this wasn’t a joke. Pattinson had indeed vanished, vanishing from both his Twitter and Instagram accounts, leaving behind a string of cryptic tweets. Not content with having his Twitter account hijacked, the actor then deleted it and its entire archive, leaving only one solitary tweet:

I killed my best friend.

Needless to say, this was a huge blow to his fans. Many of whom had taken to Twitter in an attempt to find answers, only to be met with nothing but more cryptic posts from a vanished superstar.

The First Responders

While it’s always sad to see a celebrity vanish for a time, these stories always have a happy ending. Especially when you consider all of the first responders who raced to the scene and saved the day.

Thanks to all of the agencies who worked together to bring this travails to a close:

– British police, who were the first on the scene and worked tirelessly to track down the obsessed fan who’d gone to such extreme lengths to catch a glimpse of her beloved Robert. Thanks to their vigilance, the detective was soon apprehended and brought to justice.

– The LAPD, who acted quickly to secure the area and ensure that there were no further incidents. While the city of Los Angeles certainly doesn’t need another disaster on its hands, let’s hope that this close call will serve as a lesson to all concerned – including Kristen Stewart, who was more than a little too attentive to Robert Pattinson’s every move in the first place.

– The paramedics who arrived on the scene first and assessed the situation. Thanks to their quick thinking and professional training, Robert Pattinson was able to receive the medical attention he needed and avoid further complications. While he undoubtedly regrets the actions of this one deranged fan, it’s clear that he’s also grateful for all of the help that was provided in this case – and determined to continue his excellent work with the Paramedic Emergency Response Team (P.E.R.T.).

What Now?

When a celebrity vanishes for a time, the media spotlight turns to the next most prominent person in line for stardom. It’s always a toss-up which direction public interest will turn, but in this case, it’s clear that the world is interested in Kristen Stewart. Since the beginning of the year, Stewart has been posting regular updates about her life, including the occasional picture of Rob Pattinson. It’s been enough to satisfy the demands of her fans, but not enough to satisfy the hunger of the press, which continues to pursue this story with vigor. In case you were wondering, Stewart and Pattinson have maintained an excellent relationship throughout this whole ordeal. They’ve even gone on holiday together a few times, most recently traveling to Italy in August.

This was, without a doubt, one of the most bizarre and tragic events that a celebrity has ever been through. It would be great to think that this was a one-off incident and that Rob Pattinson will now learn to be more careful and aware of his surroundings. But since this is Hollywood, we know that this isn’t the case. As bizarre incidents involving famous people continue to occur, it will be interesting to see how this case is remembered 15 or 20 years from now. Will we remember this as the incident that finally forced Hollywood’s most beloved golden boy to hide out in Europe? Or will we wonder what happened, considering how quickly he resurfaced and carried on with his life – even if it was just for the most part behind the scenes? One thing is for certain, this story has left its mark on everyone involved, including the detectives who worked so hard on this case and the fans who had to wait so long for Robert Pattinson to return. Even his costar Stewart seems to have learned a valuable lesson about the dangers of stardom. But although this was a scary experience for him, he’ll undoubtedly enjoy the benefits that came from it. It’s clear that he has a new found appreciation for his privacy and the safety that comes with being in hiding. While we wait patiently for his return to Twitter and Instagram, let’s hope that this experience has taught him to be more careful and aware of his surroundings – and that we’ll be able to enjoy the fruits of his labor and creativity for many years to come.