The Eye of

Chatterbox: Inkwell

The Eye of

The Eye of the Storm: a short story-in-progress by Sempreverde.

So, I’m writing a little short story and I’m going to post a part here. I’m looking for feedback.

Leaping up the jagged stones of the mountain, the girl paused for a moment to survey her surroundings. Her long blue hair wavered in the slight breeze. Spotting something in the distance, she climbed even faster towards the peak, and the little hut that awaited her. Sweat coursing down her face, she panted with exhaustion, the sun’s bright glare doing little to lessen her [discomfort]. The whole ordeal was beginning to weigh heavily on her, and for a moment she contemplated giving up altogether. Then she pulled herself back together and continued up. Reaching for a particularly sharp rock, she scraped her hand and cursed quietly. An injury would slow her down, and she couldn’t afford slowing down now. She ripped a strip of cloth from her gray shirt and used to it to fashion a crude bandage for her bleeding hand. Surmounting the final major obstacle in her way, she scrambled up the mountain path towards the small outpost at the top. Before she could reach the end of the trail, she heard an ominous mechanical buzzing from over her shoulder. A look of despair flitted over her face, before she regained her composure and adapted a tougher looking expression. Pulling from the air in front of her, she seemed to craft two sharp daggers from nothing. With practiced calm, she turned around and readied herself to go on the offensive. The small ship hovering behind her let down a ladder, and a contingent of heavily armed soldiers climbed out. The girl braced herself, expecting an attack from the trained warriors in front of her, and therefore was taken completely by surprise when the pilot dropped a net on her from above. For a moment she seemed yet nonplussed, attempting to slice through the flimsy looking rope with her twin blades. Making no progress, she started to visibly panic, realizing this wasn’t just any net. “You weren’t expecting this, were you, Weaver scum?” The pilot smirked at her. “You can’t warn your village now.” The girl slumped to the ground with a air of defeat around her and ceased struggling as the soldiers carried her to their ship. Once inside, she lay down on the cot they’d provided for her inside the cell, weakened from the net, and therefore failing to notice the other person in there with her. “Tempest!,“ a voice cried from the other side of the cell. “You were the last free Weaver! Our final chance to take a stand, and now you’re here like all the others.” “I was trying to warn the Artivian mountain outpost before they got here,” Tempest responded. “They were too fast. Was I really the last one left?” “The last known Weaver on the loose in the whole Lansi Empire. You were the Rebellion’s last hope. Now you’ll be imprisoned in the Capitol with everyone else. That’s where they’re taking us now,” her companion answered. “Despite all that, it’s still nice to see you again, Cloud,” Tempest said, trying to think on the bright side.

submitted by Sempreverde
(June 21, 2024 - 3:03 am)
submitted by Upside down top, age :D, Be back later
(June 22, 2024 - 12:31 pm)
submitted by right side up top
(June 23, 2024 - 2:06 pm)

I like your careful attention to detail and the way your word choice reveals backstory and stakes (for example, establishing the stakes by explaining how Tempest can't afford to slow down, although I'd suggest explaining why if you want to increase them more); I can tell you spent a lot of work on this. I'm going to suggest that perhaps you could use simpler, more tone-rich words. Here you used words such as "surmounting", "contingent", "nonplussed" which, even though they're definitely very impressive words to use, don't have much emotion or movement connected with them and grab attention from the plot. Perhaps you could experiment with tone to make the reader feel a certain emotion (for example, you could increase the urgency you introduced briefly and make the struggle between Tempest and the warriors longer so you could draw out the tension), but please keep in mind that this is just my personal preference. If it's your style of writing to use some longer, less emotional words, don't let my opinion get in the way.

But on a positive note, I think this is a good start! It's engaging, it jumps into the conflict right away, and there are a lot of unanswered questions any reader would ask (such as who are Weavers? Why is this called Eye of the Storm? Why are the Weavers being imprisoned?) which at this point aren't a bad thing at all because they make readers want to finish the story. Nice work!

submitted by Lyric, age :D, Jellyfish
(June 24, 2024 - 12:13 pm)

Suddenly the ship lurched and they stumbled, grabbing on to the walls to stay upright. “Stay calm, everyone,“ a rough voice stated through the intercom. “We’ve hit some turbulence right in the Capitol’s airspace. We’ll have to make a crash landing near the palace.” The ship took a downward turn and hit the ground hard, causing the chain locking their cell to crack slightly. “Tempest, look,” Cloud said. “If we can break it completely we might be able to escape!” Tempest smiled, but then the duo heard footsteps outside. The girls pretended to be sleeping as a guard on patrol marched past. When he left, they got to work. Picking at it with her sharp hairpin, Cloud managed to create a hairline crack along one link. Tempest whacked it, wincing. The crack splintered. She hit it again. It cracked a little more. Hitting it one last time, she let out a stifled cry of delight as it broke completely. 

 

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I did change “contingent” and”nonplussed”, but I don’t think I want to replace “surmounting”. Also, do you have any tips for writing natural-sounding dialogue? It’s been a bit of a problem for me. For this part, does the setup for their escape seem too easy? I wasn’t sure.

submitted by Sempreverde
(July 10, 2024 - 1:57 am)

Also, the net from the first part was rubbed with arrin, a liquid substance that prevents Weavers from using their magic. More on the Weavers and their magic system later.

Evergreen says +owybu+ 

submitted by Sempreverde
(July 10, 2024 - 1:59 am)