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The Sorcerers of Hisderat, Chapter 4.1

by HarryHardy


Chapter 4

That One Day You Regret Having a Portal for a Cat Flap

“Thanks, have a nice day,” Harry thanked the girl at the counter, picking up his hot chocolate. He looked around and spotted Rose, who had managed to find a free table, near the corner of the little cafe. She smiled as he caught her eye. Returning the smile, he walked over and sat down.

“Hot chocolate?” she asked.

“You know me,” Harry replied, “So how’s your…” He was interrupted by a buzz from her communicator.

“What is it?” he asked after she had taken a look at it.

“Message from HQ,” she replied.

Harry took a moment to look around. The tables surrounding them were all filled.

“So did they find the anthill?” he asked.

“The whaa...ohhh...I mean yes, yes they found the anthill,” she answered looking sheepish.

“Damn. I thought I was going to get to enjoy some hot chocolate.”

“Well, duty calls,” she said shrugging,” we did sign up for it.”

“True,” agreed Harry, pouting.

“Well don’t look so sad about it,” she said, shaking her head. ”Honestly, you’re such a drama queen sometimes.”

“I am not a drama queen,” he stated, trying his best to look affronted.

“You are,” she said, a smile creeping across her face.

“As you decree, your Highness,” he said, bowing low.

“Enough joking,” she said, doing her best to appear stern but failing miserably,” Now come on.” The two of them made their way out, crossing the street to get to the bookstore.

As far as entrances to secret organizations went, the shop didn’t look very impressive. A faded sign, hanging from one lonely nail, proudly announced it to be Aprana Books. They made their way into the ancient store. The only light came from the streaks of rapidly fading sunlight that managed to make their way through the grimy windows. There was a light covering of dust everywhere and toffee wrappers and bits of paper were scattered around the floor. A counter was set off to a side, with a young woman staring at a computer that had been out of date even in the last decade, sitting behind it. Decaying shelves were arranged in orderly rows, each one bearing a modest number of books.

Harry nodded to the woman at the counter, who winked in return, as the two of them made their way to the back of the shop. Harry stopped at the history section and he bent down to pick up a book at the very bottom of the shelf. The title of the hefty book proclaimed it to be “Domnar Mane" by K.D. Jayasinghe in golden cursive.

Harry flipped through the yellowed pages. A faint silvery sheen appeared around the book. Gradually, it began to turn to a dull green. He continued to turn till the color change was complete. Then, putting the book back, he strode confidently into the wall behind the shelf. He blinked and covered his eyes as they arrived in a well lit room. Why on Earth do they have to make the lights so bright all the time? As he squinted at the wall behind him, he saw Rose enter after him, looking a lot less affected by the light.

He turned towards the other side. In front of them, set neatly into three alcoves in the wall, stood three simple wooden doors. Each one was labelled with a number. Above the doors a simple plaque was engraved with the letters S.W.O.R.D.(Strategic Worldwide Operations and Reconnaissance Division.) One more mission to add to the record. Taking a deep breath, Harry walked towards the door with number 3 inscribed on it. He put his palm on the door and waited for the door to scan it. After Rose followed suit, the door slid open to reveal a large metal elevator.

“So, you think they made any headway on the case?” he asked once they were inside.

“Dunno, the message only said they’d found the location of the dirt guy," she replied.

“I guess we’ll find out,” Harry concluded. Rose shrugged.

Harry went silent as he pondered over the events of the past day. Good to know who that idiot is. I owe him a couple of good whacks after what he did to Rose. But why on Earth was he using so many non lethals? The… A pleasant “DING” interrupted his musing.

The elevator doors slid open and he stepped out into the corridor. The corridor, much like every other corridor in headquarters, had no decorations whatsoever. The monochromatic white walls, like they always did, looked too smooth to be real. No scratches or stains marred their surface. The corridor was illuminated by strips of luminescent parchment, enchanted with permanent lighting runes. There were reinforced concrete doors set into the walls at regular intervals.

“Which one was it? 1,4 or 7?” asked Harry as they passed by the doors marked “RECON”

“4,” replied Rose.

“Right, of course,” said Harry,” they’d need the satellite. He pushed open the door marked ‘RECON - DIV 4’."

Inside was a spacious room about the size of the average ballroom. The walls were painted a calming sky blue. Ordered workstations, each one containing a large monitor, were laid out in rows, all pointing towards a massive screen about the size you’d find in a standard movie theater. The setup reassembled a very high tech classroom. A massive map was present on the screen, blinking red dots scattered around seemingly at random.

Walter, the head technician, was sitting at his computer gesturing at something on the screen. Johnson, his amber eyes glued to whatever Walter was gesturing at, was standing next to him.

The two agents exchanged a look. Harry raised his eyebrows. She shrugged and tilted her head towards Walter. He gave a nod in return and the two of them made their way towards Walter.

Johnson was the first to spot them.

“Good afternoon. We’ve acquired the location of your dirt king.”

“The satellite picked up the signal in an apartment building on the banks of the Zarate,” elaborated Walter, turning away from his computer to look at them,” a bit of a long jump. I think you know the area well enough to be able to teleport to somewhere that’s fairly close to your target. I’ll send you the exact address so that you can get to the location”

“Right, sounds good,” said Harry nodding.

“So do we leave now?” asked Rose.

“Yes. Your mission should you choose to accept it is to get this man into custody,” he ordered.

“I warned you not to buy him those movies for Christmas,” Rose said, turning to Harry.

“How was I…,” began Harry but his defense was cut off by Walter.

“Guys. Act like adults here. Important Mission. Remember that?”

“Sorry,” chorused Harry and Rose,” We’ll get going then.”

“Good luck,” said Johnson.

They turned to leave but halfway there, Rose came to a sudden halt.

“What about the case?” she asked, turning back.

“Not the top priority right now. But getting it would help,” replied Johnson.

“But don’t we need both?” asked Walter.

“Not necessarily,” replied Johnson,” I’ll explain later.”

Harry rolled his eyes. Guess this wouldn’t be a secret agency if the boss doesn’t keep a secret. He continued out the door and held it open for Rose. She looked like she was trying to decide between demanding answers o just going with the flow. That look on her face when she’s thinking. So... Whoa Danvers. Where did that come from? Harry shook his head vigorously as if he could dislodge the thought from his brain. Mission time remember. Lots to figure out there. Who was that guy? What does he want? Why did he use the non lethals? How did...Ughhh...why do these things always have to be so complicated? You’d think we were in some fantasy novel...

“Penny for your thoughts,” said Rose, having caught up to him.

“Uhh...just some weird connections,” he replied giving her a small smile,” shall we go suit up then?”


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Thu Sep 16, 2021 5:49 pm
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MailicedeNamedy wrote a review...



Hi HarryHardy,

Mailice again here with a short review! :D

I see you've started splitting up the chapters. I think it's convenient for most people, I just found it a bit strange at this point. But anyway, let's jump in.

First of all, I have to say that I like your title names. They are not just mere words that describe something and thus want to give the effect of being particularly enticing, but tell an effective story just by this sentence structure, which makes the reader think about what you have written. To be honest, I haven't found chapter titles like that in a book for a long time.

We've progressed quite well so far with Evelyn and now Harry and also heard - I think - for the first time the concept of a place or something, where I'm now asking where the story is set, in a fictional world or in reality? I think it's good that you're opening up this point so slowly now, after you've already seen a bit of the characters and become familiar with them.

I mentioned that I like your descriptions a lot, but I also think that sometimes you use it a bit too repetitively in two points. Firstly, in terms of words (simple, large, big, etc...) where it's not so obvious when you're writing, and secondly, in your structure. You kind of always start from a big point and then build back to smaller and smaller things. For example, if you alternate your focus on something that the character who is narrating sees or something that immediately catches their eye, you manage to add variety as well as a new character reveal.

Otherwise, I liked the chapter. I thought it was great to see Harry and Rose a bit more in a quiet moment, which also shows them talking away from work. Of course, that also shows a good difference. I also liked the later transition from the café to the agency. I found it a bit strange at first until I realised what was happening. I found it very spy-like and I liked that.

I'm going to blatantly ask if Hisderat is an anagram for something or if it's the name of a country, the agency or what.

Have fun writing!

Mailice




HarryHardy says...


Thank youu for the review!!

Yeah...this is around when I realized sometimes the chapter chunks were to big for some people to review all at once :D

Uhh, this story is set on an alternate Earth, its identical to ours except with magic...which has led to a few changes here and there.

xD, Hisderat is the name of the area this is set in, not exactly a country, but more like a province/state if I can remember my own worldbuilding correctly...xD

But it is an anagram ;) This was the very first story I ever posted on the internet, soo...Hisderat comes from Read This :D1

Quite a few names for places and things in this story are anagrams :D



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Tue Jun 01, 2021 11:30 pm
Spearmint wrote a review...



Hiya, mint here with a review for the first day of June!! Thanks for reviewing (A Totally Not Evil) Bakesale; Maple and I really appreciate it! ^-^ Alrighty, so let's see if I can get caught up with this novel throughout the month...

Okay, starting off with some overall thoughts, I love your chapter titles! They're hilarious and remind me of Rick Riordan's chapter-naming style. The banter between Rose and Harry is super sweet, too! I could really tell they're good friends (and possibly something more? That "Romantic" tag... 👀) So yeah, I've enjoyed reading this so far!! =D

All right, just a small thing-- I was wondering what the "communicator" in the beginning looks like? Is it a kind of phone? (So far, the setting of this novel seems like the modern day to me, but it could definitely be an alternate universe or something.) Or is the communicator a more magical device that only spell-casting people like Harry and Rose use? Hmm or maybe it's a more spy-like gadget? Excuse all my random guesses, please XD Anyways, it's probably just me, but I'd like to know a bit more about how it looks! Perhaps you could sneak in some information and replace the "it" in this part: "after she had taken a look at it." Totally optional, though! C:
(Sorry, I couldn't find much else to critique, so I'll just be commenting on random little things I notice XD)

Ooh and I really liked the bookstore description! Old, dusty bookstores definitely seem the most magical to me :D (Oh haha and I didn't catch it before, but I scrolled through the reviews, and I've gotta say-- "Random Name" is the best book title ever XD New York Times bestseller for sure!) And that book-flipping, walk-through-wall magic is just awesome =DD

The corridor, much like every other corridor in headquarters, had no decorations whatsoever. The monochromatic white walls, like they always did, looked too smooth to be real.

Hmm. Seemingly-flawless things tend to make me a bit suspicious... Perfectly smooth walls could fit just as easily with some sinister enemy organization, in my opinion... Is S.W.O.R.D. really to be trusted? >.>

Ordered workstations, each one containing a large monitor, were laid out in rows, all pointing towards a massive screen about the size you’d find in a standard movie theater.

Okay, please tell me they have movie nights at headquarters. With, like, 4D-effect spells, maybe? :P

Mission time remember. Lots to figure out there. Who was that guy? What does he want? Why did he use the non lethals? How did...Ughhh...why do these things always have to be so complicated?

Ooh it's great how the rapid-fire questions here show how Harry's trying to distract himself and not think about Rose! They also summarize the current mysteries quite nicely-- who exactly is the Dirt King? Humm...

Well, that's about it for this review-- sorry if I'm a bit dusty! Hopefully I'll be able to get back into the habit of reviewing soon :D Anyways, I'm looking forward to reading the next part of the chapter, and I hope you have a wonderful day/night!!




HarryHardy says...


Thank you for the review!!!

xD....I'm glad you like this story :D

Hmm...the communicator is sort of all purpose spy gadget...xD...didn't describe that one too much...xD



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Fri Sep 04, 2020 1:54 pm
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MaybeAndrew wrote a review...



Hey Harry! I like this chapter a lot, but most of the other reviewers have already said a ton, so this review might be a bit shorter. I'm really liking Harry and Roses dynamic, they seem like real buds, and the little secret stuff like the bookshop was fun, once again the dialogue was sometimes dry of description, I'll point out specifics.
So, let's jump in!

Harry, I know I'm reviewing behind so my previous reviews as of yet have not affected any writing, but still, the horror of spaces before the quotation marks continues, I will list them all below.

she said shrugging,” we did sign up for it.”

she said, doing her best to appear stern but failing miserably,” Now come on.”

said Harry,” they’d need the satellite. He pushed open the door marked ‘RECON - DIV 4’."

Also, it that entire thing supposed to be in the quotation? I assume it's supposed to end after 'they'd need a satellite.'
chorused Harry and Rose,” We’ll get going then.”

replied Johnson,” I’ll explain later.”

So that's 'em all
That One Day You Regret Having a Portal for a Cat Flap

Ha! love the chapter title!
“Hot chocolate?” she asked.
“You know me,” Harry replied, “So how’s your…” He was interrupted by a buzz from her communicator

Have you by chance watched or read Umbrella Academy? Harry and Roses's dynamic kinda reminds me of Hazzle and Cha-cha from that show.

“Well, duty calls,” she said shrugging,” we did sign up for it.”

“True,” agreed Harry, pouting.

I would like a description of what he was doing to pout? Was it like a sad sigh? An annoyed and low voice? Also, why did they sign up XD? I'm excited to get some more exploration into these guy's motives.
“How was I…,” began Harry but his defense was cut off by Walter.

you should replace the comma with a question mark, even though it's just half a question.
But that's all just my two cents, hope it helped!
You’d think we were in some fantasy novel...

Breaking the fourth wall I see.
But like I said I liked this, excited to Harry's and Rose's relationship progress! Also, gonna be a fun meeting between Dirt King and our duo.
Thanks, and keep writing!




HarryHardy says...


Thanks for the review!!
Glad you like the banter between these two!!



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Sun Aug 02, 2020 2:49 am
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brotherGeo says...



You’d think we were in some fantasy novel...

Hahahaha




HarryHardy says...


:D



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Mon Jul 13, 2020 7:38 am
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IcyFlame wrote a review...



Hi Harry!

I've seen you've just posted the newest chapter of this so I'm trying desperately to get up to date with these! Much easier now they're in two parts - it makes it way less tiring to review.

Ok, so my thoughts on this one:

“True,” agreed Harry.

“Well don’t look so sad about it,” she said, shaking her head. ”Honestly, you’re such a drama queen sometimes.”

“I am not a drama queen,” he stated, trying his best to look affronted.

Maybe throw in a pout after he says true. At the moment he doesn't seem like much of a drama queen to me!

“Enough joking,” she said, doing her best to appear stern but failing miserably,” Now come on.” The two of them made their way out, crossing the street to get to the bookstore.

I like the friendship you're building between these two, though it does make me wonder if you're setting it up for something more!

The two of them made their way out, crossing the street to get to the bookstore.

As far as entrances to secret organizations went, the shop didn’t look very impressive.

Convenient that they're so close to it!

Harry flipped through the yellowed pages. A faint silvery sheen appeared around the book. Gradually, it began to turn to a dull green. He continued to turn till the color change was complete. Then, putting the book back, he strode confidently into the wall behind the shelf.

Cool!

The satellite picked up the signal in an apartment building on the banks of the Zarate,” elaborated Walter

A ha

“So do we leave now?” asked Rose.

“Yes. Your mission should you choose to accept it is to get this man into custody,” he ordered.

I know you're trying to move the story along here, but this whole thing seems very abrupt. If that's all Johnson wanted to tell them, couldn't he have just called? Did they have to go and meet him?

They turned to leave but halfway there, Rose slid to a stop.

Strange wording. I would only imagine someone sliding to a stop if they were running, not walking/turning.

Mission time remember. Lots to figure out there. Who was that guy? What does he want? Why did he use the non lethals? How did...Ughhh...why do these things always have to be so complicated? You’d think we were in some fantasy novel..

I sometimes find things like this harder to read - and I think it's hard to give someone a distinct internal voice. For example here I think it's a little similar to Evelyn's style of thinking... unless that's on purpose?

So I'm at the end of the reviews you requested! I'll go on to read the newest section as I've just seen you post it, but please let me know if you are finding these helpful/want me to continue.

Icy




HarryHardy says...


Thank you for the review!!
Ah well...they do have to leave immediately there...but I get what you mean by abrupt.
And the slid...yaa that is true...I'll fix that.
The internal monologues...are modeled after my thought patterns...so they end up kinda similar...I guess....I'll have to think about those going forward.
And these are definitely helpful and I'd love it if you could continue to leave reviews on the future chapters...
Thanks again!!



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JustPerks wrote a review...



Hello! Thanks for requesting another review and for posting the next chapter. ^^

This is definitely a shorter length, which I imagine is because this is part one, but it works nicely when it comes down to reviewing. I see that we're back to Harry's view, which I do like because I think he has a generally lighter tone, and has a rather nice back-and-forth with Rose.

I think the beginning is kinda sweet and I like that they're professional enough to continue with the case/new information even if they just got a nice drink (hot chocolate, what?) and hanging out at a nice shop. I honestly would think that both Harry and Rose would have time to at least enjoy part of their beverages while on the walk to the bookstore, or maybe being able to take the drinks along with them, and leave them at the entrance so that they couldn't ruin the bookstore/something alike to that. But I'm also very particular with what details I pay attention to.

The description of the bookstore is interesting and I like that it feels a bit mysterious, but I also just like bookstores and when they appear in stories. The receptionist is cool for working at a bookstore (lol). Let's see. The thing with the book is also pretty cool - I always want to know more about the "random picking up of a book" but, if Harry is able to see a "shine/glimmer/something different" then that makes sense why he was drawn to it.

I also kind of like the contrast between the different rooms in this chapter - comparing the bookstore with the "lights and decaying shelves" to the "white/bland corridor" and, finally, "the sky blue larger room" just to mess with colors/perceived-emotions-with-certain-colors and I really like that.

Finally, the plot here seems a bit confusing - it sounded like at the beginning of the story that the two cases were quite important - that was why there had been a minor conflict in the first chapter between Harry and Rose wanting to get the cases but also protect each other. So, I am a bit confused as to why the second/missing case wouldn't be a big deal here, even with finding Dirt King because what kind of information did Harry/Rose/their bosses get that made the case not as important as before?

Maybe I missed something though, so that's probably my fault. I think this chapter worked pretty well as a set-up to what I assume is Rose&Harry going to Dirt King's apartment in the next section, and I liked a lot of the character interactions and the descriptions. I hope this helped!




HarryHardy says...


Thank you for the review!!!
Ahh....the cases. Well...all I'll say is that the sudden change in priority was not you missing something or me forgetting something. This was done very much on purpose. It'll be clearer soon.
Thanks again!!



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Wed Jul 08, 2020 4:33 pm
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Que wrote a review...



Heya Harry!

Sorry I'm late again, but here we go!!

I really liked the hot chocolate/cafe scene, but it seemed a little strange--since they got the call to go into headquarters immediately, it seems strange that they would be taking a break they didn't have time for? (maybe I'm just sad that Harry didn't get his hot chocolate :( ) Also, it seems coincidental that they're right across from an entrance to said HQ, so I'm curious if there are many possible ways to get in or if this is a cafe they routinely visit because it's right by HQ? Because that would be really sweet to have that as a tradition.

Harry nodded to the woman at the counter, who winked in return, as the two of them made their way to the back of the shop. Harry stopped at the history section and he bent down to pick up a book at the very bottom of the shelf. The title of the hefty book proclaimed it to be “Domnar Mane" by K.D. Jayasinghe in golden cursive.

Harry flipped through the yellowed pages. A faint silvery sheen appeared around the book. Gradually, it began to turn to a dull green. He continued to turn till the color change was complete. Then, putting the book back, he strode confidently into the wall behind the shelf.

Very interesting! We're seeing so many different secret passages... I wonder, though, if only certain people can get through? A history section seems very common, and what if some ordinary person picked up that book and flipped through--would it work anyway, or is there some restrictive spell to let only the proper people through??

Good to know who that idiot is. I owe him a couple of good whacks after what he did to Rose. But why on Earth was he using so many non lethals? The mys… A pleasant “DING” interrupted his musing.

This struck me as a bit off. Even if something interrupts you, unless it's something very drastic, one usually doesn't cut off one's own thoughts. If you're making sure that readers don't get the whole train of thought, then at least you can finish the word before the elipses, or else just cut off the thought after "non lethals." At least to me it looks strange the way it is now!

“Which one was it? 1,4 or 7?” asked Harry as they passed by the doors marked “RECON”

“4,” replied Rose.

“Right, of course,” said Harry,” they’d need the satellite. He pushed open the door marked ‘RECON - DIV 4’."

I'm... not sure what the purpose of this is? Are there different room numbers for different meetings? Why are the options only 1, 4, or 7, and if Rose just got this number a few minutes ago when they were called in, why does Harry say "of course"? Sorry if my questions don't make sense, this exchange is just a little confusing and I'm not quite sure why it's here.

about the size of the average ballroom

Haha as if one typically sees ballrooms. I love it.

“Yes. Your mission should you choose to accept it is to get this man into custody,” he ordered.

“I warned you not to buy him those movies for Christmas,” Rose said, turning to Harry.

Nice inclusion! I was wondering if that line could possibly be a fluke haha. I like that Rose and Harry have all of these inside jokes, it really gives readers some idea of the depth of their relationship.

Oh, also, I'm wondering what the political state of things is? Like, he's being taken into custody by a strange organization, and I'm not sure if there's any precedent? What has he done that would make him be taken into custody? It makes sense that this is the next step, but it's still hard to tell how the organization might fit in with the world in terms of power and who knows about it/who knows about magic in general.

“What about the case?” she asked, turning back.

“Not the top priority right now. But getting it would help,” replied Johnson.

Hm. It seems to me that the priority of the case keeps shifting. Sometimes it's the most important thing to get ahold of at any given moment, and sometimes it just takes a back seat to other things. I'm very curious as to what is inside of it, and why it's so mysterious and important--does anyone actually know what it contains?

You’d think we were in some fantasy novel...

Hah! I'm not sure this is the place for breaking the fourth wall, but it's funny.

Overall, nice chapter! A little bit of slow development--we still aren't quite sure who is at play yet or what is at stake, but hopefully we'll soon have a confrontation between Harry, Rose, and the dirt man. Oh, also, the title is a nice touch, I'm curious to see what will happen with that in the next section...? haha.

Your description is pretty good, I think thus far your strength has been in writing fun dialogue between your characters and showing many different uses of magic in the universe you've created. You do seem to chunk sections of dialogue, though, so I wonder if you could break it up occasionally? Intersperse some action with the words or description so that you get a really diverse chapter!

Anyway, this is coming along nicely! I can't wait to read the next part. :)

-Q




HarryHardy says...


Thanks for the review!!
Yaa that cafe is actually the one all the agents go to cause it's right across the street.
And the book...well only agents keyed into it will see the silver glow. The book won't react to anyone who isn't keyed into the wards. That'll be clearer later.
Ahh..right yes I was being sneaky there. I wanted to plant that seed without telling the readers everything. I'll change it to be more natural.
Ahh..that again won't make a ton of sense without context. Basically only 1,4,7 contain tracking equipment so it had to be one of those. And Harry says of course because he realized that they probably used the satellite which is accessible from 4. Again to be explained in detail somewhere down the line. Here because it's Harry's POV and he obviously knows all the stuff it wouldn't make sense to explain those.
And the agency...well...to be revealed soon.
The briefcase...well....no comment or I'll give something away. ( I am dying to reveal what's inside but 'tis not the time yet.)
Ha...the fourth wall...a cheeky habit of mine along with anagrams. Well at least it was funny.
Aaan...thanks. I'll try to break up the dialogue more.
Tnanks again!!!



Que says...


No problem! I'm excited to see how all of these mysteries unravel. :)



HarryHardy says...


:D



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Mon Jul 06, 2020 5:04 pm
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Seirre wrote a review...



Hello Harry! I'm here for the requested review, at long last (:

This is a pretty short chapter, and not a lot happens, but I think it's a nice pause from all the action, and we get to have a closer look at the characters and their personalities. I also think there's a really nice balance between dialogue and descriptions!

I do have a few nitpicky things I want to mention -

In the first dialogue between Harry and Rose, from

“Hot chocolate?” she asked.

“You know me,” Harry replied, “So how’s your…” He was interrupted by a buzz from her communicator.

...to...

“As you decree, your Highness,” he said, bowing low.

“Enough joking,” she said doing her best to appear stern but failing miserably,” Now come on.” The two of them made their way out, crossing the street to get to the bookstore across the street.

You use the verbs "asked" and "replied" and occasionally "said", and not much else. It's not a huge deal, but it does get a bit repetitive, and changing up the dialogue tags a little would just create some nice variety. For example, instead of "replied" you could use "responded", instead of "asked" you could use "inquired" or even "interrogated" depending on the situation, and you could also use things like "smirked", "smiled", "grinned", "mumbled", "whispered", "muttered", etc., depending on what they're talking about. And there's absolutely nothing wrong with "asked" or "replied", either, it's just the amount that they're used.

Also, the very last line I quoted, when it says
"she said doing her best to appear stern but failing miserably",
there should be a comma after "said".

But ignoring those small nitpicks, I really love the conversation between the two of them. It shows their personalities and their relationship really well, and it feels really natural and familiar. Especially the "drama queen" exchange - it sounds just like two friends joking around, and I love it!

The two of them made their way out, crossing the street to get to the bookstore across the street.

This sentence is slightly redundant - you could probably just say, "crossing to the bookstore on the other side of the street" or something like that.

The only light came from the streaks of rapidly fading sunlight that managed to make their way through the grimy windows. There was a light covering of dust everywhere and toffee wrappers and bits of paper were scattered around the floor. A counter was set off to a side, a young woman staring at a computer that had been out of date even in the last decade, sitting behind it. Decaying shelves were arranged in orderly rows, each one bearing a modest number of books.

Gosh, I love this description. It creates a really specific picture in my mind and gives the setting a really cozy and yet also abandoned vibe. Just one teensy grammar thing - in the bolded sentence, there should be an "and" or "with" after the first comma.

The title of the hefty book proclaimed it to be “Domnar Mane by K.D. Jayasinghe in golden cursive.

I think you're missing a quotation mark somewhere in here?

“Right, of course,” said Harry,” they’d need the satellite. He pushed open the door marked ‘RECON - DIV 4’.

Another quotation mark needed here, too.

She looked like she was trying to decide between demanding answers of just going with the flow.

*or

Harry rolled his eyes. Guess this wouldn’t be a secret agency if the boss doesn’t keep a secret. He continued out the door and held it open for Rose. She looked like she was trying to decide between demanding answers of just going with the flow. That look on her face when she’s thinking. So... Whoa Danvers. Where did that come from? Harry shook his head vigorously as if he could dislodge the thought from his brain. Mission time remember. Lots to figure out there. Who was that guy? What does he want? Why did he use the non lethals? How did...Ughhh...why do these things always have to be so complicated? You’d think we were in some fantasy novel...

Eeeee I love this paragraph so much!! First of all, does he like her? And second of all, you would indeed think they were in some fantasy novel xD

Overall, a really great chapter! I can't wait to see what happens next! I hope this review is helpful, and sorry for the delay! If you've got any questions feel free to ask.

Keep writing!

whatchamacallit




HarryHardy says...


Thank your for the review!!
Oh gosh. I did use those two words a lot didn't I? I'll work on that.
And *facepalms*. I shall fix those commas and quotation marks right away!!
And Harry and Rose...well.....glad you like the paragraph.
And don't worry about the delay at all.
Thanks Again!!



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Tue Jun 30, 2020 10:52 pm
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Shadeflame wrote a review...



Hi Harry! Shade here to do a review. Hopefully I'm not too rusty, considering I haven't done one in a while! xD
Okay, let's get to it!

From the little subtitle below the chapter, I'm thinking that poor Terry made a mistake here setting up a portal for his cat. I'm guessing since you split it into two parts (or more) it's going to happen later and I'm scared for you Terry. Don't die on me!

Anyways, on to the grammar and stuff, I guess.

Harry took a moment to look around. The tables around them were all filled.

You should probably vary your word choice or rephrase the sentence since you repeat the word "around".

“Well don’t look so sad about it,” she said shaking her head,” honestly, you’re such a drama queen sometimes.”

I think you could put a period after "shaking her head". I know you normally continue your sentences, but this time I think it would work better if you started a new one. Also, there should be a comma after "well" and "she said".

“Enough joking,” she said sternly, although the smile didn’t help make it sound very stern,” Now come on.”

So, instead of the whole "she said sternly, although the smile didn’t help make it sound very stern," thing, I think it would sound better if you just put "trying to sound stern". For one, it would read better, and it would still get your point across. Also, there should be a period after "stern" instead of a comma.


Above the doors a simple plaque was engraved with the letters S.W.O.R.D.(Strategic Worldwide Operations and Reconnaissance Division.)

This is giving me some definite S.H.I.E.L.D. vibes here, and I'm loving it. I feel like this is S.H.I.E.L.D. in an alternate universe or something, although that might just be me. xD

Johnson, his amber eyes glued to whatever Walter was gesturing at, was standing next to him.

This doesn't read right. Maybe put a "his" in there or something?


“Good Afternoon. We’ve acquired the location of your dirt king.”

"Afternoon" shouldn't be capitalized here.

Guess this wouldn’t be a secret agency if the boss doesn’t keep a secret.

Yup! That's basically the trademark of them.

How did...Ughhh...why do these things always have to be so complicated? You’d think we were in some fantasy novel...

And I oop. Here Harry goes, breaking the fourth wall! Heh. It works though.

Overall, I enjoyed this new part of the chapter. Your description was good, although it did get a little boring in parts, but that might have just been me. We got to see more of Harry and Rose's friendship, and I can tell they are good friends with Johnson and Walter. I can't wait to find out what is happening with Terry and I look forward to the next bit of this chapter! I hope I wasn't too nit-picky and you can choose to ignore however much of my advice as you want.

Keep writing!
-Shade




HarryHardy says...


Thank you for the review!!!
I agree...I do suck at description.
Thanks for all the grammer stuff...I always miss something...I shall fix those when I have a chance.
Also S.H.I.E.L.D... no comment at the moment. (wink)
And that fourth wall, I do tend to slip in the occasional cheeky reference like that. Well spotted although you didn't spot the very cheeky anagram I slipped in there. *cackles*
Thanks again!! Don't worry about being rusty. It was still really helpful.



HarryHardy says...


Ohh and the cat flap...(wink)



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Tue Jun 30, 2020 10:32 pm
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EternalRain wrote a review...



Hello!! You get the honor of receiving my last review needed for Team Tortoise, hurrah!

Rose and Harry are so fun to read about. I’m sensing some possible ~romance~ between them, and even if not, I love this easygoing friendship they have going on and how much they care about each other (like, Harry wanting to get back at dirt guy for hurting Rose is so sweet!). I like how we got a little bit of banter between the two of them in this first part of the chapter. I hope we get to find out their motives in the world/how they ended up in this secret organization in the first place, because I feel like that could really help the development of each of their characters.

“The whaa...ohhh...I mean yes, yes they found the anthill,” she replied looking sheepish.


Am I totally forgetting what the ant hill is? Could just be me trying to balance a lot of books I’m reading right now heh. One other thing—immediately after this conversation, Rose and Harry just head straight out to the agency. I feel like another comment was necessary, something like “Johnson wants us there” or something, just to keep the reader in the same scenario with the characters. Otherwise they kinda just hop up and go and I’m left wondering why!!

I love the idea of a secret agency in a bookstore. That is AWESOME. I also like how we’re getting more contextual/setting description—I’m having a much better time picturing where everything is! One question- is this [where Rose and Harry are now] the same place they were earlier, with the doctor? I think it could be worth explaining if this is just like a little side-bunker or if it’s the HQ.

You’d think we were in some fantasy novel...


Heheheh

Last comment, is that I kinda want to see more reactions about this new mission from Harry! Earlier he made a comment about him wanting to get back at the dirt guy, so I feel like he would be pretty hyped to have this mission (and maybe we’ll see more of that during the actual confrontation).

I think that’s it though. I’m loving this slow unravel of ideas, and Harry & Rose are just too awesome. Until next time!

Peace,
~EternalRain




HarryHardy says...


Thanks for the review!!
About the anthill, Harry just made up a code word on the spot there in case someone in the shop overheard. So you weren't forgetting anything.
Umm the agency thing...i'll see if I can add something.
And Harry...there shall be more reactions soon.
As for the romance...well...it is in the genre. (wink)
Thanks again!!!
And I am ever grateful for the honor of being your last review for team tortoise.



HarryHardy says...


And Oops I forget to say...it is the same place...it will all be tied together in Part 2



HarryHardy says...


And I'm glad you love Harry and Rose!!!
Note to self: Make sure you reply to every point in one reply by reading the whole review at once.



EternalRain says...


Ahhh the anthill thing makes so much more sense hehe :) And I am excited for part 2!



HarryHardy says...


:D




'They are afraid of nothing,' I grumbled, watching their approach through the window. 'Together, they would brave Satan and all his legions.'
— Emily Bronte, Wuthering Heights