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A Painter & Writer's Magic [Chapter 8]

by Liberty


Last Line(s): Audrey and Will looked at each other, then down at Ujalaa. She gave them a shy smile. This time, it reached her eyes.

Chapter 8

Audrey and Will were taken up cold stone stairs. It looked as if everything but the Devils and slaves - they were all kids who looked around the age of Ujalaa - who were walking about. The hallway the couple were walking through was warmer from the hall they had first entered. Either they had gotten used to the temperature, or it really was warmer in that specific hallway.

“Are we there yet?” Audrey asked Ujalaa. She shook her head no. “Why don’t you talk? Are you not allowed to?” Ujalaa looked at Audrey with raised brows. That kept her quiet.

They continued walking, and finally, they stopped at the end of the hallway, facing two large oak doors with handles made of horns. Will stared at the horns. “These are mammoth tusks.” he told Audrey, clutching her wrist. “Literally and not literally.”

Ujalaa face-palmed.

“I bet she thinks you’re wrong.” Audrey giggled. Will let go of her wrist but Audrey found her way into his hand again. The little girl made a face at their hands and turned around to face the door again. She pushed the door. It didn’t open. She pushed it again.

“Do you need help?” Will asked. Ujalaa nodded. After a bit of pushing, Will and Ujalaa succeeded. The little girl grinned, showing her little teeth lined perfectly.

The three of them entered the room. Audrey and Will stood at the front, awed by how luxurious the room was.

To the right was a huge bed - bigger than a king-sized one - with silk sheets and a gold-embroidered blanket that looked softer than a fluffy kitten. There were dozens of plush pillows all embroidered with gold as well. The headboard was made of oak wood too, and there were intricate carvings on it.

Audrey walked forward and touched the wood, dancing her index finger along the curves of each design.

Will went the opposite way, to the dresser. That, as well, was made of oak wood. There were three drawers, and each of them had carvings on them too. And when Will opened the first one, it was full of perfumes, creams, brushes, et cetera. He closed it and looked into the second one. Full of clothes. Next one? Clothes.

Audrey and Will looked at each other through the mirror, grinning. “This place is fantastic.” Audrey breathed, glancing at the doors once again, then back at Will. Her ear twitched and she looked back at the door. Ujalaa wasn’t there.

“Where’s the kid?” Will asked.

“No clue.” Audrey muttered.

“Let’s forget it for now.” Will sighed. “I feel sleepy.”

“There’s a closet right there. I checked it out. Walk-in.” Audrey smiled brightly. “It’s great, and all our clothes are there too!” She led him into the walk-in closet and his eyes widened.

“Neat.” he said coolly, running his hands through the hung-up clothes.

“I’m so happy!” Audrey laughed, throwing her hands around Will’s neck, and planting a kiss on his cheek. “I’m alive, we’re under a roof, and I’m with you.”

Will was shocked at first because it was rare for Audrey to hug and kiss. But he smiled anyway and hugged her back. They stayed like that for a while, enjoying each other’s company before they left the closet.

“What now?” Will asked.

“There’s a bathroom there.” she pointed behind her. “We can freshen up, find food and then sleep for a while. Even saying the word feels so relaxing.” 

Will gave her a peck on her cheek. "Love you." he whispered.

"I don't like being so cheesy." Audrey mocked her husband's voice. 

They laughed.

***

“So you’re saying: if I put my hand in the bowl, and grab air, and then bite into air, I’ll taste my favorite food?” Audrey said, talking incredibly slowly.

They were now in the high-ceilinged dining hall. It seemed as if most of the furniture in the palace was made of oak wood - for example the twelve foot long dining table and its two dozen cushioned chairs.

“If you say it like that it just sounds dumb but just try.” Akol said, his head in his hands. He reached out and put his hand in the big bowl that covered most of the table. There weren’t even utensils or plates. Akol then took a bite from the air around his hand.

“He’s crazy.” Will whispered to Audrey from the corner of his mouth.

“How about we try?” Audrey asked.

Audrey and Akol put their hands in the big bowl in unison.

When Will saw their hands brush together and Audrey smile, he felt a strong burning in his chest. He shoved his hand in between theirs and snatched up air. Following Audrey’s actions, he bit into the air over his hand and tasted… Everything you would taste in an English Breakfast mixed together. Will grabbed more air and continued eating. And he didn’t care how dumb he looked.

On the other hand, Audrey had tasted lobster with the perfect amount of heat and spices. She licked her lips and grinned at Akol who was watching the couple. Audrey felt uncomfortable under his piercing gray gaze but she continued eating anyway.

Akol cleared his throat. The two looked up at him questioningly.

“There’s a lot that will be coming at you when you help save Pluto,” he said and scratched the back of his neck. “You two should sleep. As much as you possibly can. So that you can be well rested for everything that will be coming at you in the near future.”

Will tilted his head. “Like what?”

“Like Angels and the Attacks.” Akol said simply.

“What?” Audrey squinted.

“It’ll make sense. It’ll come in your dreams. It won’t be scary, but it’ll be like an explanation to whatever is in Pluto.” Akol explained.

Audrey nodded understandingly. “Also, about the little girl…” she trailed off when Akol’s jaw tensed noticeably.

“She’s a Human Slave. Children who live in the Realm of the Souls but their parents die before the child is born… then those children come here, to the Ditch and work for us. They’re just called slaves. They aren’t exactly slaves though. I guess you could say that they’re like our minion helpers.” Akol explained, surprisingly patient.

Audrey squeezed Will’s hand from under the table. They were both thinking the same thing: No parents. 

Audrey's heart skipped a beat.

But neither of them said anything and silently continued with their dinner.


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Fri May 22, 2020 10:56 pm
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MeherazulAzim16 wrote a review...



Hi Liberty!

It's been a LONG time since I reviewed chapter 7. I kind of went AWOL for a bit. I see you've writing a lot in the meanwhile. Will do my best to catch up.

“So you’re saying: if I put my hand in the bowl, and grab air, and then bite into air, I’ll taste my favorite food?” Audrey said, talking incredibly slowly.


This chapter was fun. The invisible food reminded me of a scene from Hook. I used to love that movie. I guess I still do, I just haven't watched it in a long time.

“If you say it like that it just sounds dumb but just try.” Akol said, his head in his hands.


It's a small thing but the sentence probably runs better if you remove the first "just."

“There’s a lot that will be coming at you when you help save Pluto,” he said and scratched the back of his neck.


Wait... like... the planet?

3 minutes later...

Hm. I guess that makes sense, sky-wise.

I doubt I have anything more to say that hasn't been said in the six other reviews. So, this is it. Keep on writing! (I'll see if I can keep on reviewing.)

~MAS




Liberty says...


Thanks for the review! Pluto is actually a completely different planet in a completely different galaxy. xD



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Wed Apr 29, 2020 6:36 pm
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LadyVendetta wrote a review...



You know the drill, a gem stone here to give her useless thoughts on your novel *Jazz hands*

who were walking about.

Who is unneeded, were walking about is better for the flow.

“Are we there yet?” Audrey asked Ujalaa. She shook her head no. “Why don’t you talk? Are you not allowed to?” Ujalaa looked at Audrey with raised brows. That kept her quiet.

Alright, so Audrey seems like a pretty demanding person, but asking someone why they don;t talk is a bit rude, yeah? Maybe have her wonder why in her head, but saying it aloud is just kinda making me face-palm.

Ujalaa face-palmed.

mood. I don’t have much of a guage yet on Ujalaa’s persona, maybe her movements could be more detailed. Is she a dive in the way she struts, or shy, because she keeps her head down. Little things make all the difference, Libs.

To the right was a huge bed - bigger than a king-sized one - with silk sheets and a gold-embroidered blanket that looked softer than a fluffy kitten. There were dozens of plush pillows all embroidered with gold as well. The headboard was made of oak wood too, and there were intricate carvings on it.

No complaints, just a congrats on how well you described this. One thing, I know, I know, just if you go to the trouble of describing such a bed, do the walls, the color, the windows, what could be seen, the floor, wood or carpet, the painting, etc. You do the dresser next, I know, but it feels lackluster.

Audrey walked forward and touched the wood, dancing her index finger along the curves of each design.

O.o I’ve never heard of anyone dancing their fingers, traced or followed, may be a better description. I’m imagining her finger moving back and forth very quickly and unnaturally here XD.


“No clue.” Audrey muttered.“Let’s forget it for now.” Will sighed. “I feel sleepy.”

How can you sleep after just being knocked out, kidnapped, taken to another planet, and there may be a loose kid running around. Don’t trust her!

“I’m so happy!” Audrey laughed, throwing her hands around Will’s neck, and planting a kiss on his cheek. “I’m alive, we’re under a roof, and I’m with you.”

I mean, it makes sense why she’s happy, but is that the best word for it? Grateful, relieved, comforted. But happy is a stretch for someone who has literally been through hell.I won’t stop the puns.


“So you’re saying: if I put my hand in the bowl, and grab air, and then bite into air, I’ll taste my favorite food?” Audrey said, talking incredibly slowly.

Yes, magic, the one word answer to every question. But have you developed a magic system, rules, how it can be used. A proper story-line as to how they got their powers? When they don’t work, and how do the spells function?


mAgIc.


“How about we try?” Audrey asked.

Does it have nutritional value? My favorite food is cookies so this would not go well for me…
Also, I love the thought of someone eating air, it makes me giggle.

“It’ll make sense. It’ll come in your dreams. It won’t be scary, but it’ll be like an explanation to whatever is in Pluto.” Akol explained.

Explanation or exploration?
Audrey's heart skipped a beat.

Oh no, a tear in the myocardium! She’s having premature vascular contractions. No, but, seriously, that’s dark. And sad. I like it!

But neither of them said anything and silently continued with their dinner.

Again with the endings, you’re very good at them.

OVERALL: Again, the reactions and flow is off, but I keep harping on about that, so I’ll stop. I have no real things to mention, just a good job. I’ll see you in the next chapter after a cookie break!

Jade




Liberty says...


Thanks for the review! Also, yeah, I have a whole magic system for this world. :)



LadyVendetta says...


Yay!



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Magebird wrote a review...



It's taken me far too long to get around to reviewing your novel, but I'm finally here to comment on all of the chapters I've missed!

So let's get to it. :)

Spoiler! :
It looked as if everything but the Devils and slaves - they were all kids who looked around the age of Ujalaa - who were walking about.
'

I don't know what's worse - that there's slaves, or that the slaves are all children. I hope we find out more about why there's a group of enslaved kids soon. :(

They continued walking, and finally, they stopped at the end of the hallway, facing two large oak doors with handles made of horns. Will stared at the horns. “These are mammoth horns.” he told Audrey, clutching her wrist. “Literally and not literally.”


Something felt off about the description, so I decided to do a quick search on google to check my suspicions. Mammoths didn't have horns, but they did have tusks. All you need to do is change the horns into tusks, and you'll be all set!

“Do you need help?” Will asked. Ujalaa nodded. After a bit of pushing, Will and Ujalaa succeeded. The little girl grinned, showing her little teeth lined perfectly.


I can't remember if I said this in my last review, but I'll be very surprised if Will and Audrey don't end up adopting Ujalaa by the end of this book. They're a couple, they don't have any kids, and they seem to be clicking with Ujalaa.

“I’m so happy!” Audrey laughed, throwing her hands around Will’s neck, and planting a kiss on his cheek. “I’m alive, we’re under a roof, and I’m with you.”


Aw. <3

Also, I love the description of the room that they're in! It's exactly what I would have expected from Akol - he's definitely not hurting for money, and I'm sure he wants to treat them as best as he possibly can. It really fits both him and the setting.

“So you’re saying: if I put my hand in the bowl, and grab air, and then bite into air, I’ll taste my favorite food?” Audrey said, talking incredibly slowly.


That's the perfect way to start a new section of a chapter. :P

Also, I'm really intrigued by this bit of worldbuilding! I wonder if it's just the sensation, or if they'll actually get the calories/nutrients from whatever they're "eating" from the bowl?

They were now in the high-ceilinged dining hall. It seemed as if most of the furniture in the palace was made of oak wood - for example the twelve foot long dining table and its two dozen cushioned chairs.


The dining hall lives up to expectations. :)

Following Audrey’s actions, he bit into the air over his hand and tasted… Everything you would taste in an English Breakfast mixed together. Will grabbed more air and continued eating. And he didn’t care how dumb he looked.

On the other hand, Audrey had tasted lobster with the perfect amount of heat and spices.


I'm not sure what someone's favorite food says about their personalities, but I really love how much this one scene adds to both Audrey and Will's character. An English breakfast is such a casual thing to like - it implies that someone likes comfort and routine. Audrey's favorite food, on the other hand, implies that she likes to spice no pun intended things up from time to time and splurge.

“She’s a Human Slave. Children who live in the Realm of the Souls but their parents die before the child is born… then those children come here, to the Ditch and work for us. They’re just called slaves. They aren’t exactly slaves though. I guess you could say that they’re like our minion helpers.” Akol explained, surprisingly patient.


minion helpers


Akol seems like such a serious guy sometimes, right until he says things like that. :P I'm still definitely worried about the kids - I don't think it's good to be forced to work at such a young age - but I also love the explanation for how they end up there.

Audrey squeezed Will’s hand from under the table. They were both thinking the same thing: No parents.

Audrey's heart skipped a beat.


Audrey and Will, realizing there's a bunch of orphans running around:

Image

All in all, I really love like this chapter! It's the perfect one to get me back into reading your novel. I couldn't find any grammatical issues, and I liked getting more into your worldbuilding. I can't wait to read the next chapter!




Liberty says...


Thanks for the review! I'm glad you enjoyed it. :) About the invisible food - you actually get calories and nutrients. ~magic~



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Sun Apr 05, 2020 9:19 pm
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Gnomish wrote a review...



Hello, I'm finally reviewing this chapter!

It looked as if everything but the Devils and slaves - they were all kids who looked around the age of Ujalaa - who were walking about.

I'm not sure I understand this. Are you trying to say it looked like the classic devils and slaves vibe, or id didn't. I would also say the last part of the sentence something like "Kids who looked around the age of Ujalaa were all walking about."

Other than that, I really like this chapter. At first I found it weird how much they loved the room, and they weren't scared that they weren't going to go back, but I suppose if they didn't have any close friends or relatives it would be a pretty good situation. (And if they have to stay there for a while, they might as well be comfortable, right?)
I like the part about Akol and Audrey when they're eating the air, although I did feel bad for Will.

Keep writing!
-Gnomish




Liberty says...


Thanks for the review!



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Tue Mar 31, 2020 10:40 pm
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EternalRain wrote a review...



Hey Lib! Here for another review day review. On my phone - sorry in advance for any typos!

So, last chapter I talked about description - BUT I really enjoyed the description of Audrey and Will’s room and of the luscious oak wood dining hall. Really beautiful. I’m still wondering though what the context of this palace is... is it in the middle of a vast field or is it near a village or...? We’re still exploring the world, but it is something I’m curious about for the future.

Will is super jelly of Aud. I wonder if there’s going to be a love triangle down the road? Or maybe Will’s jealousy will bit him in the butt. Great dynamic tho!

Following Audrey’s actions, he bit into the air over his hand and tasted… Everything you would taste in an English Breakfast mixed together. Will grabbed more air and continued eating. And he didn’t care how dumb he looked.


This made me grin. What a fun little way to incorporate the magic in the world. And it cracks me up thinking of Will grabbing fistfuls of air and shoving it into his mouth lolol.

Another thing - Akol KEEPS dragging out when he’ll explain. Lol. I don’t mind the suspense because we’re still given tidbits of info (like the child minions hehe) and I’m finally excited for them to learn more in their dreams, but Akol is coming across as a bit dismissive when he keeps saying “I’ll explain later”.

Speaking of the child minions, I like this idea a lot. So are there just a bunch of the children running around the palace? :0 Like is the palace a home for all these children, and there’s tons of devils everywhere? I’m pumped to get more interactions with more characters (so far, your characters have been really strong). Right now, I’m getting an empty vibe from the palace, but I’m not sure if that’s what you intended. (If it isn’t - maybe consider adding in characters running about, or they pass by a devil, or something!)

Okie dokie, that’s it for the chapter!

Peace,
~ EternalRain




Liberty says...


Thanks for for the review!!



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Tue Mar 31, 2020 9:24 pm
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IIUMBRELLAZ wrote a review...



Hello!
This is a really neat story. I’d say your biggest strength here is that you write really vivid descriptions for example--

"To the right was a huge bed - bigger than a king-sized one - with silk sheets and a gold-embroidered blanket that looked softer than a fluffy kitten. "

Nice use of the metaphor and so much description so I can see it clearly and I know exactly what you're talking about.

This place is really cool it's like a suite just meant for the couple. I really love your characters and I am waiting for the next chapter heatedly!

I hope you keep up the good work!
:)




Liberty says...


Thanks for the review!



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Tue Mar 31, 2020 8:07 am
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Hkumar wrote a review...



Hey!

Finally we are going inside the palace. I like how you wrote about Ujalaa's expressions. Even though she can't speak. Still she seems to sweet and innocent.

To the right was a huge bed - bigger than a king-sized one - with silk sheets and a gold-embroidered blanket that looked softer than a fluffy kitten. There were dozens of plush pillows all embroidered with gold as well. The headboard was made of oak wood too, and there were intricate carvings on it.
Will went the opposite way, to the dresser. That, as well, was made of oak wood. There were three drawers, and each of them had carvings on them too. And when Will opened the first one, it was full of perfumes, creams, brushes, et cetera. He closed it and looked into the second one. Full of clothes. Next one? Clothes.

Wow! This place is like a suite just meant for the couple. They even got the daily use cosmetics and accessories. It's like a vacation :P

"I don't like being so cheesy." Audrey mocked her husband's voice.

Audrey didn't forget Will's previous remarks. She knows how yo get back with a perfect reply :p
When Will saw their hands brush together and Audrey smile, he felt a strong burning in his chest. He shoved his hand in between theirs and snatched up air.

Someone's getting jealous! Will's behaviour is so childish at times, it's really funny.
They are even getting the best food here. This place is so awesome.

“There’s a lot that will be coming at you when you help save Pluto,”

Aud and Will didn't seem to take this attack thing seriously. I am still waiting for Akol to clear up the things about what's actually happening in this place. Now there's this new place 'Pluto' but like you have mentioned we have to wait till it all comes in Aud's dreams.

“She’s a Human Slave. Children who live in the Realm of the Souls but their parents die before the child is born… then those children come here, to the Ditch and work for us. They’re just called slaves. They aren’t exactly slaves though. I guess you could say that they’re like our minion helpers.”

Okay that explains the reason for kids being working in such a weird place. I feel sad for them, they didn't get the chance to live a real life.
There's a new information we get to know about the couple that they wanted to welcome parenthood but perhaps haven't being lucky yet.

Though in the first stanza I will suggest some changes.
"Audrey and Will were taken up cold stone stairs"
I think something is missing here. It should be "taken up through the cold stone stairs".
"It looked as if everything but the Devils and slaves - they were all kids who looked around the age of Ujalaa - who were walking about."
This line looks odd while reading, maybe because of the two 'who' in the sentence.
It looked as if everything but the Devils and slaves - who were all kids just like Ujalaa - were walking about.
Also you mentioned Devil(s). So did they pass by some more like Akols. I think you should give a little detail about them as well.
Well these were just my views. You can discard them if you think they are not right (I am not very good at this).
Overall I have enjoyed this chapter. Your work is really amazing. I am eagerly waiting for some new twists and turns. I guess we will have to wait for Audrey's dream for more answers. I really wish to see Aud use her magical powers. <3
Keep Writing :)




Liberty says...


Thanks for the review! And your reviews are really helpful. <3 Don't worry. Thanks again! I'm super excited that you're excited!




There is a difference between being poor and being broke: broke is temporary; poor is eternal.
— Robert Kiyosaki