Author Topic: June 20th - Will777r - Soul Yearning - Chapter 4  (Read 2095 times)

Will777r

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June 20th - Will777r - Soul Yearning - Chapter 4
« on: June 21, 2011, 03:14:51 AM »
Hey guys :)

Here's Chapter 4. It's about 2300 words, so a shorter chapter. Again I appreciate the time anyone takes to read this and offer feedback.

Chapter 4 Summary - Albione is summoned to a meeting with his immediate Superior to face the consequences of his actions on the wall.

Here's the summary's for the first 3 chapters.

Chapter 1 Summary - Albione rescues a rival militia commander, but ends up losing the knight he's sworn to protect. A night elf raid has overrun the walls

Chapter 2 Summary - Charom, Albione's older brother, is in charge of the High Priestess' guard detail when the temple comes under attack.

Chapter 3 Summary - Albione rescues the High Priestess and accompanies her and his brother Charom to the wall. What he finds is completely unexpected.


Thanks again!

Will777r

Asmodemon

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Re: June 20th - Will777r - Soul Yearning - Chapter 4
« Reply #1 on: June 22, 2011, 09:34:10 PM »
Again, writing and style-wise I don’t have much complaints, this chapter read very easily. But just like the previous chapter there are things that really don’t make sense to me. Maybe it’s just me, mileage may vary after all.

First of all I’m not getting why Albione is being punished. I’d get it if it was for leaving the wall he was assigned to, to give an unnecessary warning, but that’s not it at all. He was up on the wall during a siege accompanying a knight. The big, strong armoured knight and the squishy (especially from a knight’s perspective) priest. And of these two the priest is responsible for the knight? What, why? If the knight was that important to warrant a personal healer/bodyguard(hah!) in the form of a single priest he either should have had more men or he shouldn’t have been on the wall in the first place.

Secondly, calling it ‘cowardice’ is really strange because Albione wasn’t being a coward. He explains it that the priests call all derelictions of duty cowardice, but I think in this case that the term ‘cowardice’ is misplaced. Albione could’ve slayed a dragon and he’d still be a coward. It would make more sense that he broke their Sacred Laws or the Word of God and that therefore he’s ‘blaspheming’ their tenets. And therefore should repent.

Later Albione thinks of the man he has saved and thinks the following:

Quote
The others would have done that. Benda was militia after all, and a commander at that. He’d be doing the world a favor by letting a man of such compromised values die.

It’s a bad thing to save someone from the militia and even worse if he’s a commander? Is this world completely twisted around? And Benda is not a man of compromised values, neither is Ferris. They are still defending the city though there are three times more of them than any other force. If they wanted the city they could take it, but they haven’t. When you go back to these chapters I suggest you really work in why the militia is so distrusted and not just that they are distrusted. That’s what I’m really missing, the why.

I liked the ending ceremony and Albione’s guilt over letting his charge die.

What I’m missing though with the ceremony and Albion’s punishment throughout the chapter is that they just beat back the elves for the third night in a row, and this last time the elves even got behind the walls. Yes, the elves were beaten, but I didn’t get the impression they were beaten for good. All though Albione’s out of the action I’m missing references to the fact they are still besieged. Isn’t anybody worried? It’s like it’s suddenly over.

Will777r

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Re: June 20th - Will777r - Soul Yearning - Chapter 4
« Reply #2 on: June 23, 2011, 03:28:53 AM »
Thanks again for the feedback Asmo, both positive and constructive. I'm really glad I found you guys :)

I especially apprecate what you had to say about the temple's stance not making sense. It doesn't make a whole lot of sense to Albione either. One of the theme's of the book is the question of truth and evil. Albione has always believed his temple to be good. But are they? The temple's views seem a little warped, but religion can do that to folks. "Cowardice" to them would probably be synonymous with "sin" or "wickedness", even though the action might not resemble cowardice at all. The breaking of any of their principles falls in that category. I'm hoping that comes out more in the story as the temple is explored a bit, but it might not be working.

The miltia might be able to take the city, but it would be a bloodbath. Whether Benda or Ferris have compromised values remains to be seen, although I'll let the reader decide :)

As for the city being on alert - The militia is, but the temple knows it's over via Rook-Sha. Her revelation from Alazon told her the truth behind the attack, that this was a squabble between Rysok and Alazon (two deity's) and it failed. Maybe I should bring that prologue back heh.

Will774

cjhuitt

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Re: June 20th - Will777r - Soul Yearning - Chapter 4
« Reply #3 on: June 24, 2011, 03:24:50 AM »
Be warned, I'm reading this chapter without the benefit of the previous ones.

Is Albione speaking out loud to the portrait, or thinking it?  What would happen if he was heard speaking that out loud?

The displeasure in Brother Pate's eyes could stand alone, instead of stating Albione would be punished.  We find that out soon enough anyway.

There is a lot of interweaving of Brother Pate's dialog with Albione's actions and reactions.  I think it might be more effective to concentrate the condemnation, and get the most important reaction (or two) from Albione.

Was the writing at the bottom of the page Albione's penance and the stamp some other matter, or the other way around?  That part confused me, at least partially because the proximity of the stamping to the penance in the text makes me think the stamp dictated the penance.  If that's the case, is tearing old doors apart a common enough penance to need a stamp?

Speaking of penances, Albione thinks this one would fall to young acolytes.  How young are they when they would do this penance?  (Later one is mentioned as not more than twelve.)  I read it as basically tearing a door apart, albeit an older door.  It's believable to have a grown man and warrior do so, maybe, if they aren't the grand entrance doors I envisioned.  The ones I envisioned could be torn down with great effort by a man, or with some effort by a man using magic.  I'm not sure that it would be something routinely given to boys, even if removing old doors is common enough for it to be routine.

What footwear does Albione use, if any?  Boots are mentioned later.  If he does much without wearing them, or wears them without socks, the prayer beads might not be as painful as depicted.  Annoying, yes, but unless they are really prayer caltrops, probably not a jolt.  He's probably got some good calluses built up by now.

There's no need to mention Brother Pate again as the instigator of this next duty.  I still remember who assigned the penances, and if he's still doing an acolyte's task, it's still a penance.  Even if it has some good reasoning behind it.

The High Priestess goes through the first three names very quickly, if their families are going to walk up and receive a medal as demonstrated by Sir Ronar's wife and children.

What do Sir Ronar's children look like.  Does the boy resemble his father?  Maybe the daughter?  Something to drive a bit more sorrow into Albione, perhaps.

When he got to bed you mention no light spilled from the room.  Wouldn't light go into it from the hallway?

I think you could make the last line more effective to end on a nice punch.
Caleb

akoebel

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Re: June 20th - Will777r - Soul Yearning - Chapter 4
« Reply #4 on: June 26, 2011, 03:47:44 PM »
I get the feeling that Albione's set of moral values differs strongly from the one imposed on the priesthood (a life is a life vs only the faithful's lives matter). If so, why is Albione so internally conflicted? He might feel like the penance is unjust (though not unwarranted : he knew what was coming), but here, I mostly get confusion from him, and that confusion is getting in the way of my sympathizing with him.

I also get very little feelings of relief from him when he learns he won't be kicked out. He was sure his punishment would be quite severe, and he got only chores. He should have been celebrating his luck!

The penance itself left me with a strange question : Albione is a healer. Why doesn't he heal himself? He complains about his hands, his feet, and so on, but he should have been able to get himself better in just a few seconds. Instead, he never even thinks about it! Maybe he's unable or unwilling to do this, but this should be stated plainly (right now, all I'm thinking is 'stop complaining, you chose this').

The burial ceremony was a nice touch. Bringing in the children really helped cranking up the tension.

hubay

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Re: June 20th - Will777r - Soul Yearning - Chapter 4
« Reply #5 on: June 26, 2011, 10:25:33 PM »
I think this was your best chapter so far, mostly because it placed such an emphasis on character (the last three were more concerned with action and setting). Again, I feel like it would make a little more sense to have Albione's thoughts in italics, rather than quotes.

I agree with Albione's superior that it's strange the higher-ups don't give him a harsher punishment. Given that, I feel like the superior could have been even more emphatic in showing that he, at least, thinks Albione should be kicked out of the priesthood.

The one thing really missing now is Albione's friends – where are they? If he doesn't have any, you should mention that. If he does, either they should show up to give support, or you should have him griping that they're not around. Right now it feels like Albione lives all by himself, with his brother as his only real connection. I'll assume you have some more characters you just haven't introduced yet because it would confuse readers, but I think you could at least drop a name or two so we get a better sense of Albione as a person.

Anyways, I know we've been pretty hard on you over magic  and setting, but your story still holds my attention and interest, and at the end of the day that's what you need.