CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/26/14

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CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/26/14

Postby Comic Kitten » Fri Jan 03, 2014 5:38 am

So I've been writing a novel for the past 6 months, and I'd really enjoy some constructive criticism. The audience is roughly ages 12-30 (young adult is a pretty wide range), and the genre is fantasy. I plan on getting this published once I've gone through the editing process countless times, so I won't be posting the entire story online (for the protection of my work). Instead, I want to post small snippets from my rough draft and see if it interests anyone or if they feel it's too bland. Please be honest, I really want to get published one day! Thank you :)
Last edited by Comic Kitten on Sun Jan 26, 2014 1:41 am, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/3/14

Postby Comic Kitten » Fri Jan 03, 2014 5:41 am

Sneak Peak #1

A cold breeze snuck its way into the room and crawled up her spine. She shivered and pulled her blanket up to her chin. Normally the house was warmer, but whenever her parents were away on business it seemed to chill over. Caverly sighed and looked to the window next to her nightstand. It was dark and eerie outside, and the moon was nowhere to be found. Of course, she thought. Why is it always scarier when I’m home alone? She slugged out of bed holding her blanket tight like a force field. Although her parents left quite often on business trips, she still didn’t feel comfortable being in the house alone.

Caverly’s father worked with the government with international matters. What those were, she never knew; it was confidential. As for her mother, she was the translator. Her mom always had a knack for learning languages, and there wasn’t one she couldn’t pick up rapidly. Caverly sometimes wondered if she had the same talent, but her parents were too busy to teach her so she never knew.

She smiled at the array of books lined up in her wooden bookshelf. They smelled like fallen leaves and were worn from multiple uses. Her fingers traced each book fondly, a familiar touch with every spine. The room seemed to heat up with every title she read, and finally she didn’t feel so alone.

“How can I choose which of you to read?” She wondered aloud. Caverly loved each one, but it was always difficult to find the right book that would calm her soul. She closed her eyes, took a deep breath, and reached her arm out. Her hand met a small, short book. When her eyes opened, she smiled at the story that awaited her: The Giver by Lois Lowry. Although she had first read it when she was barely in elementary school, the story pulled her into a world that felt natural. Her own life was dull and lonely, and she often found herself in a strange mindset compared to everyone else, even her closest friends. This thought had always troubled her because she felt as though she belonged to a different world altogether. “Too much reading makes your imagination take over reality!” her mother would joke.

She tunneled back under her blankets and snuggled up next to her lamp. It was routine to get lost in worlds unknown, making lasting friendships with the characters, vanquishing evil, gaining clarity over seemingly impossible trials, and discovering yourself without even realizing it. If only the real world worked that way, she thought.
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/3/14

Postby Tenshi Nova » Fri Jan 03, 2014 7:40 am

Hard to give a critique on a fantasy story without being introduced to the fantasy part of the story.
Given this, all I can really say is that it makes a good prologue. I'm not the best judge around here, but that's my take.
This short does remind me of my own life, being an only child and getting lost story after story. :3

I wish you good luck for your hard work in the future!
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/3/14

Postby Comic Kitten » Fri Jan 03, 2014 7:55 am

Thank you very much!!! This is the beginning of the book, so I was hoping it intrigues the readers enough to keep going (but not a huge action-packed intro because I think those are annoying). I will keep posting sneak peeks, probably every week or so. I just want to make sure that the story sounds interesting to people... Thank you for responding!
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/3/14

Postby Birdofterror » Fri Jan 03, 2014 9:20 am

I really liked this! I could totally imagine the situation she was in, and all of the actions she partook of. The cold house, the blanket, the comforting books. It was all conveyed so clearly. I like it!
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/3/14

Postby Comic Kitten » Fri Jan 03, 2014 9:59 am

Thank you! I was hoping it would do that :)
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/3/14

Postby Millo » Fri Jan 03, 2014 1:29 pm

So far so good! You really know how to write YA novels. Seriously, reading this brings memories of Junior high/high school. One thing that I'm a teeny bit concerned is that Caverly will be overshadowed by the fantasy characters when that is introduced. How do you plan on really fleshing out her character if you don't mind me asking?
Have you tried turn it off and on again?
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/3/14

Postby Comic Kitten » Fri Jan 03, 2014 5:39 pm

Thank you so much!!! I was hoping it sounded YA because it's my favorite audience to write for.

Thanks for the great question! I can't give away the plot, but i'll try my best to give you a good idea. Basically she's a shy, awkward high schooler who tends to go with the crowd because she would rather blend in than stand out. In the world she goes into, she's the one who is unique to the people there and she is suddenly forced into social situations outside of her comfort zone (not to mention the actual events, but I can't give those away). The story has people with magic, and Caverly is weirdly more comfortable around these people than her own (no peer pressure and it's like a book). The action that takes place is mainly from her point of view, and I wrote it so the reader could feel as if they were in her shoes. I didn't want a brave, incredible character because it's not that relatable; it's a normal girl having incredible experiences. And as a foreshadowing thing, I'll just let you know that after a lot of character development, something amazing happens that makes her way better than the fantasy characters! But more on that later in book two... ;)
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/3/14

Postby Millo » Fri Jan 03, 2014 6:01 pm

Awesome! Don't be discouraged to post something other than your book though! We'd all really love a new short story unrelated to your book to read ;)
Have you tried turn it off and on again?
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/3/14

Postby Comic Kitten » Sat Jan 04, 2014 9:09 am

Well I haven't written a short story since high school (for English class), and other than that I've only written academic essays... This novel is the first real thing I hope to accomplish! I'm not even sure what I'd write about as a short story :P
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/3/14

Postby Tenshi Nova » Sat Jan 04, 2014 10:23 am

The fun is that you can write about anything :3
Maybe a side story from your main could be some inspiration.
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/3/14

Postby Comic Kitten » Sat Jan 04, 2014 11:27 am

I'll see what I come up with :P
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/3/14

Postby Comic Kitten » Thu Jan 09, 2014 9:33 am

Sneak Peak #2

“We’re here!” Grandma Dawn said cheerfully. Caverly glanced at the small coffee shop in front of the car. It was a humble store with a brown owl on the sign that read 'Owl’s Café' in white cursive. As they strolled into the building, she noticed the small sticker on the window that stated, “Free Wi-Fi.” She stored that thought for later in case she needed to get away from the house for a while and explore the Internet.

Once inside, her nose was bombarded with the smell of different teas and coffee. It was a little dim, but most small tables by the walls had hanging lights illuminating them. In the center of the room was an oriental red rug that was mostly covered by a worn-out brown couch and a red sofa chair. There were some college students reading books and typing on their laptops here and there, some old ladies chatting away with their husbands, and one older woman drinking some tea by the window. The moment she turned to face them, Caverly knew it must be Summer.

Summer was well named because she could be the season manifested. Her hair was golden blonde, even with her old age. Her eyes were bright blue and Caverly could see kindness pouring out when she glanced at her. She wore a red flowing dress trimmed with gold and patterned with black abstract flowers. When she greeted Caverly she embraced her in a warm and welcoming hug.

“It’s so great to meet my best friend’s granddaughter!” Her words were delicate and smooth. “You are gorgeous.”

“It runs in her genes!” Grandma Dawn teased with a wink.

Caverly blushed and did not reply. She wasn’t used to people putting her in the spotlight, especially if it was to compliment her in any way. At school she avoided eye contact from teachers so they wouldn’t call on her, even if she knew the answer. Her friends were fine being the center of attention, so they didn’t mind if Caverly only wanted to listen to their rambling stories and complaints.

Summer smiled sweetly. “Sorry to have embarrassed you! You just glow with beauty. Take a seat, both of you!” She gestured to the extra seats by the little wooden table. Caverly sat down next to her grandma and began to relax. Maybe she could learn a few things from her open-minded grandmother and her friend? If she could learn to accept compliments and take the spotlight every once in a while, maybe a boy would ask her on a date during her senior year this fall.

“Here, Caverly, go order whatever you’d like. Can you please get me some jasmine tea?” Grandma Dawn handed her a small wad of cash.

“Sure thing, Grandma.” She got up and headed towards the front counter. Then suddenly her feet stopped moving and her breath was caught in her throat. Her eyes had locked with the deepest blue eyes she had ever seen. She felt as though she was diving into the ocean, and it didn’t help that his smile was even more dazzling. Two dimples danced on the sides of his grin, which gave way to the perfectly white teeth underneath. Caverly’s heart was beating so fast she was sure everyone in the room could hear it.
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/9/14

Postby Tenshi Nova » Thu Jan 09, 2014 10:00 am

Ah, the smell of romance mixes with the scent of tea.
Wonderful touch.
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/9/14

Postby Comic Kitten » Thu Jan 09, 2014 1:29 pm

Thanks!! You always need an awkward romance for a YA novel ;P
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/9/14

Postby Millo » Thu Jan 09, 2014 2:43 pm

It's an essential part! Both of the book and real life, I mean who here hasn't locked eyes with a cute boy who has dimples at a tea shop in a small town? You haven't lived till you've done that


I like your choices as far as which small excerpts to post on here. They're not too important but not too unimportant. They're the right kind that it's interesting to read and it gives more information on Caverly
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/9/14

Postby Comic Kitten » Thu Jan 09, 2014 3:59 pm

Hahaha I'm glad you can relate to locking eyes with cute boys, Milo!

Thank you very much! I try to pick things that are interesting but in no way give away my plot.
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/9/14

Postby Comic Kitten » Wed Jan 15, 2014 3:33 am

Sneak Peak #3

“I hope you’re having a lovely summer, Caverly.” Her grandmother’s voice caught her off guard.

“I really am! Thank you!”

“I was hoping you would!” She grinned then glanced at the clock. “Oh dear, I better get going. I have a doctor appointment at three. It’ll probably take a while so I’ll bring home some pizza for dinner. Would you like that?”

“That sounds fantastic, I haven’t had pizza in forever!”

“Groovy! What’s your favorite kind?”

“I usually like cheese, but I’ll eat any toppings so order whatever you’d like.” Grandma Dawn nodded then reached for her cane.

“Grandma, why do you need a cane? I was just wondering because you eat so good, ride bikes, and take a walk every morning…” she trailed off.

Grandma Dawn frowned. “I have a blood tumor in my left leg, it’s been dormant for a while but it doesn’t ever go away. I have to wear a compression sock every day or else it grows hard and is very painful. Usually if I stay active it helps keep the pain down because the blood is flowing, but lately it’s been getting worse… That’s why I’m going in today.”

“Oh no I’m so sorry! Is there anything I can do? Are you okay?”

She chuckled. “No, Sweety, it’s something I’ve had for a while. I can only live healthy and hope for the best. I’ll be back later tonight. I love you!”

“I love you too, Grandma!” Caverly frowned as her grandma walked out the door. For some reason, her grandma’s spunky attitude almost made her seem invincible. She acted so young! But Caverly supposed everyone had weaknesses. Before she could ponder Grandma Dawn’s condition any further, her phone buzzed.

“Hey there!”

“Hey, Tyler! What have you been up to?”

“Ughhhh, my grandparents are coming to town so my aunt has been making me help her clean and get ready for them. I’m supposed to pick them up from the airport soon and we’re all going out to dinner.”

“That doesn’t sound too exciting lol”

“It’s not… especially because I’d rather be with you! Last night was amazing!”

She beamed. “I had a great time, too! I miss you.”

“I miss you, too. I wonder if I can see you tomorrow? My aunt made me get work off for the next five days so she might be making me go do things with the family.”

Above her head she heard a distant clanking sound. Caverly strained her ears and concentrated. Ring, ring, ring. It sounded like someone was shaking the wooden box.

She glanced back to her phone to reply. “I would love to see you tomorrow! Just let me know. As always I have nothing to do lol… by the way, I hear the noise again.”

“I will definitely let you know! :) Are you going to investigate?”

“I’m not sure… I did last time, and the box still made the sound without shaking. It’s bizarre.”

“Lol maybe the attic is haunted??”

“Haha maybe…” She stared at the ceiling. “I think I’ll go look for a key.”

“Cool, tell me if you find one! I have to go now; we’re headed to the airport. See ya!” She grinned at her phone then set it down by her book. The attic was still echoing with the sound of the wooden box and whatever was inside it. Her eyes wandered to the hallway where her grandmother’s bedroom was. Should I invade her privacy? She pondered. The noise seemed to grow louder, or maybe she was imagining things… either way, she stood up and cautiously approached the bedroom door.

The golden doorknob was shining against the dark brown of the door. Her hand hesitantly reached for it then lingered while she contemplated the consequences. If Grandma Dawn found out, would she be furious? Caverly didn’t know how she would react. Maybe she could make up an excuse if her grandma ever found out? The sound of chiming glass from the attic seemed to be pounding in her head so she decided to open the door.

Caverly gasped at how beautifully decorated the room was. Her eyes scanned the walls in awe because they were covered in yellow, green, gold, purple, blue, and other bright colors. They were mostly thin sheets with lovely designs such as flowers, trees, the sun, stars, spiritual symbols, and tribal patterns. The ceiling was adorned with strings of Christmas lights and dried flowers. The bed was covered in a quilt made of different patches that was glowing with multiple colors. On the floor by the foot of the bed was a brown, simple rug that faced the window. I wish my room looked like this! She noted.
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/15/14

Postby Tuor » Wed Jan 15, 2014 3:36 am

The emoticons kinda threw me off, haha, also "I’ll eat any toppings so order whatever you’d like.", clearly a fantasy story.

Nah, good writing, CK. I enjoyed it.
"Suddenly Frodo noticed that a strange-looking weather-beaten man, sitting in the shadows near the wall, was also listening intently to the hobbit-talk. He had a tall tankard in front of him, and was smoking a long-stemmed pipe curiously carved. His legs were stretched out before him, showing high boots of supple leather that fitted him well, but had seen much wear and were now caked with mud. A travel-stained cloak of heavy dark-green cloth was drawn close about him, and in spite of the heat of the room he wore a hood that overshadowed his face; but the gleam of his eyes could be seen as he watched the hobbits."
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/15/14

Postby Comic Kitten » Wed Jan 15, 2014 5:18 am

Hahaha yeah Snafu kind of turned a texting smiley face into an emoticon! And luckily her character isn't picky with food... Which really helps her later on... hintity hint hint!

Thanks Tuor ;)
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/15/14

Postby Tenshi Nova » Wed Jan 15, 2014 6:24 am

The check boxes have an option to disable the smilies. lol :D :)

I'm okay with any toppings on my pizza too, high five to Caverly!
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/15/14

Postby Comic Kitten » Wed Jan 15, 2014 7:53 am

Thanks for the heads up! I fixed it so it's easier to read.

And thank you very much, I will!! I'm at the final chapters and it seems to be the hardest part to write...
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/15/14

Postby Comic Kitten » Mon Jan 20, 2014 3:38 am

Sneak Peak #4

“Would you like to come see what Magics can do?” Azuka offered.

“I thought they could only control the weather?”

He grinned mischievously. “Then you have been misled…” He stood up and walked away with Caverly following behind.

Jaida was sitting cross-legged in an open area away from the trees. The ground was covered in flattened plants and dirt, and she was in a semicircle with Willow in the front. There were two other children there, a toddler biting her dress and a scrawny boy who was probably eleven or twelve.

“Zen, would you like to show Jaida how we start the lessons?” Willow asked the boy.

“Sure!” He sat up straight, closed his eyes, and started to breathe deeply. Caverly had never meditated before, but from the pictures she’d seen online, she assumed that’s what he was doing. Jaida watched him for a moment then followed him. The toddler started playing in the grass distractedly.

“Isn’t that girl a little young to be doing this stuff?” Caverly whispered.

“Well Blossom can’t do any magic yet, but when Magics group together, their power is intensified. It’s healthy for children her age to be surrounded by it so later when they learn how to use it they will have better control.” Caverly nodded. It was so strange to be in a world with magic, but for some reason after being here for some time, nothing was surprising her. Too much reading, her mom’s voice murmured in her thoughts.

“Clear your mind.” Willow spoke softly. She was in the same pose as the children, but she seemed to have a natural power in her posture. “If a thought comes in, acknowledge it then let it float away; you will come back to that thought later. Now take a deep breath in,” everyone breathed in, “and now out.” They breathed out.

At first Jaida’s expression was calm, then it slowly turned to confused concentration. The toddler was poking some ants with a stick and Zen was relaxed and focused. After about twenty minutes had passed, Caverly’s legs were starting to get angry and her throat was begging for water. They’d been walking for so long, and now that she was standing still she realized just how sore she really was. Caverly tried to ignore her body’s pleas and turned her gaze back to Jaida’s face. As if falling asleep, Jaida’s expression suddenly changed and looked serene. Surprised, Caverly examined the other faces and noticed they were all sharing the same expression. Even Blossom had stopped playing with the ants and lay down peacefully on the ground, staring into the trees.

“Good.” Willow unexpectedly whispered. “Feel your magic and let it flow through you. Allow its warmth to consume you; it is your friend, not your enemy.” Jaida was smiling softly and Zen seemed much more confident than Caverly’s first impression of him. As if on some hidden cue, everyone’s eyes opened and Blossom sat up in attention. “Very good my children. You have very powerful magic!” She smiled and reached into her dress pocket to pull out a dried flower bulb.

“What is she going to do?” Caverly wondered out loud.

“Just watch…” Azuka said without looking away from his wife.

Willow dug a small hole in the ground, placed the bulb inside, and then covered it back up with dirt. “Now, children… I want you all to close your eyes and imagine your magic pouring into this small bulb of life. Allow it to leave your fingertips and become apart of this bulb, just like it is apart of you. Share your gift.” She closed her eyes and placed her hands over the bulb’s location. Zen immediately followed and then Jaida did as well. Blossom crawled over and watched in amazement as if she could actually see the magic leaving their hands.

Birds were chirping in the background and Caverly could hear the distant chatter of the other people working back at the commune. After a few moments it seemed like nothing was going to happen, but then a small green stem budded from the ground. Caverly stared in amazement and looked to Azuka for an answer, but he just winked and looked back to the Magics.

Slowly, the green stem grew taller and leaves sprouted on the sides. At the top a bud began to appear, and then it opened up to reveal a young flower. The Magics seemed in deep concentration, and then the flower bloomed into a beautiful lily. Willow smiled and opened her eyes.

“You all did wonderful, my children! Look what you have created today.” Zen grinned in accomplishment and Blossom giggled.

When Jaida opened her eyes, she seemed in utter shock. “I didn’t know I could do that!”

Zen laughed. “Of course you can! I’ve been practicing since I can remember. Didn’t someone teach you this back home?”

Willow shook her head sadly. “Zen, most places discourage practicing magic and even take away Magics forever to the Capital.”

“My dad was a Magic…” Jaida whispered.

“I’m so sorry, dear.” Willow patted Jaida’s leg. “I’m sure he was a great man.”

“I never met him… But since I was little I knew I could control the weather. Whenever I would cry, it would rain outside. One time my sister caught me making it snow a few years ago and swore me to keep it secret so they would never take me away.”

Zen reached over and gave Jaida a hug. “I’m so sorry! I wouldn’t know what to do if I had to keep my magic hidden.”

“So what other things can I do?” Jaida asked, changing the subject.

Willow smiled. “Being a Magic simply means you are a child of the universe. You can control anything in nature including the weather, plants, water, dirt, and even help living creatures. When you are trained and advance more, you will be able to heal wounds and sicknesses.”

Caverly gasped. The way Raya’s mom had described magic seemed so evil, and now hearing it from Willow made her wonder how such rumors had been spread. “Why are people afraid of Magics then?” Caverly blurted.

They all turned to Caverly in surprise as if they had been too busy practicing magic to notice her there. Azuka sighed and put his hand on her shoulder. “People are afraid of what they can’t understand; especially if that thing is powerful. Vicious rumors have forced Magics to hide their gift.”

Everyone was silent for a moment before Blossom started to cry. “I think she’s hungry…” Zen said with a laugh. “Thank your for the lesson, Grandma!” He gave her a kiss on the cheek then picked up Blossom with some struggle and left.

“He’s your grandson?” Jaida inquired.

“Yes.” Willow was smiling wide, obviously proud. “He’s just like his father!”

Azuka chuckled and nodded in agreement. “Both little twigs as kids… I’m sure he’ll grow to be strong!” He turned to Caverly and frowned. “You must be so hungry and thirsty! Let’s get both of you back to the fire and fix you something. It should be lunch soon, and I’m sure everyone would love to hear how you came into our world!” He winked.

Caverly gulped. She had never been good at public speeches in school, let alone to strangers. Willow placed a hand on her shoulder as if reading her mind.

“Don’t be nervous, child. You are with friends.” She smiled then grabbed Azuka’s hand and walked away.

“They’re so nice!” Jaida said as she approached Caverly. “I wish Raya could meet them.”

“Cool magic skills!” Caverly said as they followed the path back to the center of the commune.

“Thank you! I never knew I could do that… I actually haven’t really practiced magic on purpose since I was little and didn’t know any better.”

“You’re still little!” She winked.

Jaida laughed. “Well, littler!” She stared at her hands for a moment. “I just didn’t know it could feel like that… helping something grow.”

“It’s an amazing thing!”

Jaida beamed and grabbed her hand. “Thank you.”
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Re: CK's Fantasy Novel - YA - Original - 1/20/14

Postby Comic Kitten » Sun Jan 26, 2014 1:40 am

Sneak Peek #5

Raya felt like a ghost in the long, dark halls of the palace. She was drained of emotion, logical thinking, energy, and patience. The once glamorous structure now only looked like a prison to her, and she felt like a traitor about to be discovered. She was scrubbing one of the many stained glass windows and fighting back tears, yet again. It had been three days since she’d seen Jaida, and she felt helpless. The day Caverly took Jaida into the dark forest, she wanted to just cry and yell at her mother. Instead, she had to run to work holding back tears… and she had been late. Her back still stung three days later, and she could painfully feel the sweat dripping down her back into the wounds.

“This will teach you to be late!” Miss Stelli had threatened with a sharp voice. Raya had flinched, but the blow came a half second later when her body wasn’t prepared. Her screams filled the ears of everyone in the Capital, she was sure.
Raya couldn’t decide what was worse: the whipping or Miss Stelli enjoying it so much. She had never liked her supervisor before, but now she loathed her. Whenever Miss Stelli barked orders at her, she had to calmly accept them while inside she was screaming. Raya stopped wiping the window and took a deep breath. This job was for Jaida, after all. She needed to stay determined, calm, and follow orders.

If it had been up to her, she would have taken Jaida there herself and left her mother alone to perish. Raya loved her mom, but that affection was wearing thin. First, her father had been taken away. Now, her little sister was banished into hiding. But Jaida was right… their mother needed them. As much as Raya despised her mom for tearing their family in half, she knew her mother didn’t know any better; the fear of Magics had been engrained into her since she was a child. Luckily, Raya had grown up with her father for a short time and he had shown her the truth.

The plan was simple. Wait a week or two, earn enough money to give to their mother to last her a while until she found a better job, then head to the Swamplands and figure out the location of the Magic hideout. That was all her father had told right before he was taken away, and she hoped it was still the same eight years later. Easier said than done, she thought miserably.

An even worse thought crossed her mind; what if Jaida never made it there? Raya had sneaked around the palace and overheard the guards being sent out to fetch her sister. As if that wasn’t enough, she had also been interrogated and beat viciously. Luckily, they had believed the story that she was on her mother’s side… but the angry fire burning in her chest was almost too much too bare. Just four more days, she reminded herself.
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