RandomTalks here with a short review!
Well, I guess that went as well as could be expected under the circumstances. And here I had been hoping that Jack would handle this interaction a little more senitively than their previous ones, especially since a lot is riding on whether Melody decides to believe him or not. I guess we all have our own shortcomings.
Narration and Description:
Despite the disastrous conversation between the two of them, I surprisingly enjoyed this chapter very much! It felt perfectly balanced to me in terms of narration, plot and character evolution (even though Jack's growth kind of detoriated here). I enjoyed the description in the beginning and the narration near the end. Your inclusion of Melody's random thoughts made us feel more connected to the story and in turn, more connected to her. For example:
It must have rained recently because the grass under my feet was damp and it wasn’t until now that I realized I wasn’t wearing any shoes.
Here, realizing that she wasn't wearing shoes was a rather random discovery. But the thought connects with the description, helps establish a setting and gives us a glimpse of Melody's easy connection with nature. It also implies that after everything that has happened, shoes are a very trivial matter and Melody cannot concern herself with such trivial matters at the moment. It can also be seen as Melody embracing her own nature and desire for freedom without realizing it.
Part of me wanted to ask him what kind of cologne it was but I refrained. It was a stupid question.
This was another random and weird thought to have in that moment, especially considering that she knew they were going to have an important discussion that would finally provide her with some answers. Yet, thoughts and observations like these make the narration feel more personal and at the same time, they make us realize that she is only a teenager and is not used to all of this. Therefore, instead of coming across as weird, it made me smile stupidly because, well, it was a stupid thing to wonder about in that moment.
Coming to the characters, I really liked Melody in this chapter. I like how almost all her extreme reactions (like her punching Jack when he grabbed her) are guided by the disturbing relationhip she shares with her family. Her anger, her insecurities - all arise from there and I really like the fact that you keep acknowledging it in every chapter. Her actions and reactions here were very believable and I enjoyed watching her take charge of her life once again. Despite all the confusion and the extraordinary circumstances , we got a glimpse of her previous fire and it made us empathize with her even more. I don't think I would have reacted any differently had I been in her situation.
Now, Jack really messed up in this chapter. He was insensitive and kind of arrogant and impossible to deal with. And yet, at the same time, I can understand where he is coming from. He is a leader - he is used to issuing orders and people simply following them because of his status. He is not used to explaining his actions or showing patience and understanding - its a shortcoming that has been glaringly evident in the last two chapters. Therefore, when it came to Melody, he just knew that he wanted her on her side and did not care about how he would achieve that or whether she would even want to be on his side. He is looking after his own interests and is forgetting that all of this is ridiculously absurd to Melody, just as it would be for anyone who is not one of their own.
Therefore, info dumping on Melody or dropping in the fact that she is his mate and is a werewolf herself was probably not the way to warm her up to the truth of her identity. And expecting her to react in any other way after handling the situation so callously was a rather ridiculous on his part. He was frustrated, but mostly because he was not getting his way and his ending comment really infuriated me. He did not act his age in this chapter, and I am really interested to see how he makes up for it.
This was an intense and entertaining chapter. I felt as though I was with the charcaters at all points and it made for a genuinely good reading experience. I especially loved the ending where we could feel Melody's overwhelming emotions, the hurt and anger and confusion she felt - great writing in that part! I am excited to see where the characters go from here!
Keep writing and have a great day!
Until next time!