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Angels

by CateRose17


Ten Feet

She grappled for some source of balance as she fell forwards, she was warm-  getting  hotter by the minute.  Her heart fluttered franticly in her chest as the banners of war flew in the smoky atmosphere.  Her eyelids fluttered over her brown eyes. It was chaotic. There were terrifying  blurs of  kevlar and flurries of bullets  rushing  past  her. That was when Ara realized she had been caught in the crossfire. The red staining her arms wasn't her sister's blood- it was her own. She cried out, feeling nauseous and sweaty. Her midsection screamed in protest as she bent over with her arm  covering the new seeping wound.  She dared not look down lest she lose consciousness. The ground  met her body hard  with a  crash, shards  of  glass and  broken metal   hit her face,  stars surrounded  her  as  she  blinked  back  tears. She  grasped  for  the  dust in  front  of her  and   crawled towards the treeline as fast as her weakening body could go.

" Ten  more  feet...just  ten  more..." Ara thought, as she tried to block out the sound of her friends and strangers alike, fighting and dying to defend their own. But  the Super Soldiers were more deadly than they were a decade ago. There would be no survivors. The blood encrusted clay gave way to cool, dark green grass, sheltered by pines.  She was safe, but she knew that the safety wouldn't last.

" This must be what childbirth feels like." She muttered through gritted teeth as she chanced a look. She gagged at the  metallic stench of the dark blood and forced herself to look away," Except that brings life," she  sobbed, "this brings death." Ara felt like she was too young to die. The survivor was only fourteen, the youngest of five children-  but that was irrelevant now. The small  girl  watched as fire glistened in the ranch that she used to call her home.  The heat radiated from the scene like it would from an oven.  Just watching and hearing the wooden frame houses fall and crack underneath the flames' pressure beat her down even more. Ara was afraid for her life, friends in nearby encampments, and the simple fact that she was slowly and painfully dying. Ara's malnourished hand forced the blood back into the seeping  hole in her gut as she struggled to keep her eyes  open.  The exploding of the fire and falling of the houses sounded dull now as her mind slowed. Ara placed a blood stained against her chest. She couldn't feel her heart, the beating was faint.

She grew limp against the trunk of a fallen pine, her scorched  blonde hair entangled in the bark. Her eyes weighed down and the fourteen year old girl's will to live quieted, but her relentless hope  endured...  Maybe that's what had called out to  the soldier  as he watched the black flame of the Democracy grow foot by foot.


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91 Reviews


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Thu Jun 02, 2016 12:16 pm
Kazumi wrote a review...



ayy, it's awtbeyders b0ss, here to do the promised review

Disclaimer: Take everything I say with a grain of salt; it's your story, not mine.

Description. It's actually a very good description, worthy of a YA novel. It's ironic (in a good way) and it's catchy.

Paragraph1. Is this the name of the first part of the short story? Or is this supposed to be some sort of monologue? Either way, the way you show this lone phrase (no italics, first letters are capitalized, fragment) makes it seem really awkward and out of place.

P2. I didn't really expect much out of this YA thriller, to be honest, but I guess it's good. There's just a few nitpicks:
-"Fluttered" is more of a romantic word. I'm not sure if it should actually be in a pure action scene.
-Kevlar is proper noun (capitalize its first letter).

-This is more of an opinion, but feel that the way you introduce the main character's name is forced. I mean, it feels like you just tried to squeeze her name in the action scene. If I were you, I'd place it right at the start so that the introduction of her name won't be too sudden.
That's just me though.

Overall, the paragraph is detailed and well-described, but there are two problems. One, sometimes you get into the descriptions so much that the plot doesn't progress anymore, or at least the flow of events is hindered. I feel that it's important for the plot to progress, especially that this is an action scene. An example is the 7th-8th sentence.

Another one is the grammar, mechanics, and spelling. Seriously, this is basic English. Your errors make such a descriptive and beautiful paragraph harder to read. I hope you'll be able to cover this soon. Note that both of these occur all throughout the story.

P3. This one is more of a clash with the YA I'm used to, but you don't have to put quotation marks on thoughts if it's already italicized. I kind of get confused if it's her thoughts or her words.

Nitpicks:
-(1st sentence) Defend their own what?
-(S2) What about "deadlier" instead?
-Just a thought, but if it's just dark green grass and not tall grass, then I don't think she's hidden from sight. She'll be spotted immediately and nuked on sight.

Also, the fourth sentence just further describes the setting, then all of a sudden Ara's hidden herself in the grass. It's like you suddenly switched the POV or jumped into another point in time. Maybe you might want to write the fourth sentence in the active voice so that you can show Ara's actions as well as describe the scene.

Other than these, and the grammatical and spelling errors, this paragraph is alright.

P4. Damn. Ara's so talkative, even at the brink of death.

I think your descriptions are getting a bit out of proportion. At times, you put so much in between dialogue (1st and 2nd sentences). Sometimes the descriptions are disorganized or repetitive(6th-8th sentences "The small girl.."). They hinder the flow of events and distract the reader from what's actually happening.

I've got nothing against bootyful descriptions, but it gets annoying when it's overdone. What I suggest is remove everything that isn't needed or is already mentioned in previous sentences or is already obvious. If you still want to keep those descriptions, I suggest you compress them into fewer sentences. Make sure they're still coherent though.

Or maybe it's just a clash with my writing style.

P5. Ayt, just one more thing to point out 'til we're done.

I feel a contradiction in the second sentence. If her will to live quieted, then doesn't that mean she's lost all hope? Also, I suggest you place swap the places of the first pronoun "her" with its antecedent (the fourteen-year-old girl), so that we know who you are talking about right away.

Overall, this first part is messily picturesque, but still better than many YA chapters I've read here in YWS.

omg there's a YA chapter I actually like. the end is nigh

Anyways, keep on writing and I'll see you again in the future.




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Tue May 31, 2016 3:24 am
decco6226 wrote a review...



Wow! This first chapter was amazing! It was so well written and really detailed! I loved it! One of my favourite parts is how you describe the shooting scene, as she doesn't know straight away she's been shot, but it slowly comes to her in the end! I also love the humour you put in with child birth, that giving life, and bullets bringing death. I also really liked how you described the hand forcing the blood back into her stomach hole. It gave me a clear picture of what putting pressure on the wound is.

Great story! I'm gonna read more, and keep commenting!




CateRose17 says...


Omg! Thank you so much! With the shooting thing, I've heard (and read) that in such situations, adrenaline is pumping and that stops pain from being felt for a small amount of time. I just had to use that :). I am very glad that think it's well written and detailed! That means a lot. When I started here, I didn't expect to get such good reviews!



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Sat May 28, 2016 4:33 pm
RoyalHighness wrote a review...



Royal here for a review! Also, welcome to YWS!
Let's get to work.

This was generally well-written, but it has a few problems.
"Frontwards" is awkward. I'd replace it with "forwards."
The first sentence is a run-on; need a period between "frontwards" and "she."
I'd replace "increasingly" with "getting," so the line reads: "She was getting hotter by the minute."

It was choatic, there were terrifying blurs of cavlar and flurries of bullets rushing past her at rapid speed.

*Chaotic and *kelvar?
This is a run-on sentence. Need a period between "chaotic" and "there." Also, I'm not sure how blurs can be terrifying, but that's your interpretation of the situation. You don't have to say "at rapid speed," if you've already said "rushing past her." Plus, having both is a bit awkward.
That was when Ara realized she had been caught in the crossfire, the red staining her arms wasn't her sister's blood- it was her own and very fresh.

She's just realizing now after apparently getting shot that she'd been caught in the crossfire? And also, what's the crossfire about? Who is fighting whom, where, and why?
I would make this sentence two sentences, and put a period after "crossfire." Also, "very fresh" sounds awkward and wooden. I think if you mentioned maybe how the blood looked or smelled or even tasted, the scene would evoke a more powerful sense of place and plot.
She cried out, as she could feel the nine millimeter slug lodged in her midsection.

My pet peeve is when people use the word "as" when they mean "because." But "because" used here would be super awkward. I'm just not buying that she's in pain; the diction is too objective. I'd work on showing her pain rather than just talking about it.
The ground met her body with a sting as some sort of metal hit her face, sending starbursts into her eyes. She placed an arm in front of herself and crawled towards the treeline as fast as her weakening body could go.

I think if you've just gotten shot, and you fall to the ground with no buffer, that impact would do a lot more than just "sting." The phrase "sending starbursts into her eyes," is confusing, but I know what you mean. I'd just re-word that a little bit, if you can still keep the (awesome!) imagery of stars. "She placed an arm in front of herself," is a little awkward. I'm imagining that she's carrying a separate, dismembered arm, and that that's the arm she's placing "in front of herself." I'd re-word this to sound more like the arm is hers, or better yet, take that part out and just say she "crawled." Other than that, you did a great job of keeping the action flowing and moving forward with the plot. So far, pretty good!

When characters think, it's more common to put their thoughts in italics rather than quotation marks.
You don't need a comma after "But," and you don't need "all the more deadly." You could just say "more deadly." Adding "all the more" implies that you've mentioned the way they were before, but you don't (and don't need to; you've done a good job already of setting up their capacity for destruction.)
I think you mean "blood-encrusted." Love that imagery, by the way. Really great attention to detail!
Granted, she was safer, but not entirely safe.

I think this line is a little unnecessary, but if you'd like to keep it, I'd re-word it to say "She was safer now, but still in danger," rather than repeating "safe."
There's a space between the quotation mark and "This" in the third paragraph-- tiny typo!
If you have a dialogue attribution like "muttered" or "said" after dialogue, you have to put a comma within the quotation mark, not a period. So it'll read: "This must be what childbirth feels like," she muttered...
I'd make the "chanced a look" line its own sentence. This is a great chance for some awesome and disgusting imagery, but only if you let it stand on its own!
She gagged at the stench and forced herself to look away," Except that brings life," she hiccuped a sob," this brings death."

Okay, great start with the gagging and I love the word "stench." But you need to end the sentence at "look away." Put a period after that, and put the quotation mark next to "except." Also, the quotation mark next to "sob" really needs to be next to "this." Tiny typos, but they make a big difference.
I also think you need to choose between "sob" and "hiccup." Doing both sounds painful. Personally, I'm a fan of "sob" in this case. Save "hiccup" for something less dire.

Ara felt like she was too young to die-she was.

Either she is, or she feels like it. Gotta choose one to write. Having both sounds a little awkward.

I'd put a hyphen between "children" and "but," to make it more effective.

What small figure? Is the small figure Ara? Or is the small figure an angel? I'd replace "the" with "a" because you haven't mentioned the small figure before now.

Need a period between "home" and "the heat," and between "oven," and "just watching." Otherwise, both of those sentences are run-ons.
Ara was deathly afraid for her life, friends in nearby encampments, and the simple fact that she was slowly and painfully dying.

Right, so, I'd take out "deathly," just because the juxtaposition of "deathly" and "life" renders the entire sentence ironic rather than dire. This is another example of talking about dying, rather than showing it. How does it smell? How does it feel, is her heart slowing down? Is she watching her life flash before her eyes? Does she have any last thoughts, any regrets?

Ara's malnourished hand forced the lifeblood back into the seeping whole in her gut as she struggled to keep her eyes alive.

Love the use of "malnourished," in this case, but you don't need to say "lifeblood." The word "lifeblood" implies a more metaphorical meaning. Here, I think you mean literal and actual blood, which is the word I'd use in this case. I think you also meant to say "hole," instead of "whole," and "open" instead of "alive." You don't "keep" eyes alive, you keep them open (although, I do like the imagery of keeping eyes alive. I'm imagining a bunch of doctors standing over a pair of disembodied eyes with a defibrillator).

In the final paragraph, I think you can just say "scorched blonde hair," instead of "scorched and blonde hair." The "and" makes it awkward.
The ellipses after "raged" really take away the punch that I think you meant to have there. Ellipses are really more for expressing uncertainty, but there's nothing uncertain about hope raging. Also, who's the "him"? Is that the figure from before? I think you need to make that a little clearer, maybe introduce him earlier and make sure the reader understands who's who.

So those are mostly little grammar mistakes. Nothing major, easy fixes. Overall, I think the plot has a lot of potential, and I'd love to see this continue as a series! Let me know when you've updated. Angels have always been a really cool concept for me, so I'd love to read more.
Great job overall, keep it up!




CateRose17 says...


Thank you so much for taking the time to read and critique my writing! I have never had anyone really tell me what I need to fix so having someone tell me is a nice change. Thanks again, RoyalHighness :)



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Sat May 28, 2016 9:59 am
MrBrainwasher wrote a review...



Written beautifully! A slight touch of humour was felt, which is hard for the writers to bring into their writing. Your vocabulary seems farely strong and that's a plus point for you too. All I could find was the problem with punctuations......

She cried out as she could feel the nine millimeter slug lodged in her midsection

A comma is required after 'out'
........ slug lodged in her midsection, she dared not look down lest she lose consciousness.

It should be a period (not comma) after midsection
A comma is required after 'down'
"Ten more feet... just ten more..." Ara thought as she tried to block out the sound of her friends and strangers alike fighting and dying to defend their own.

Comma after 'thought' and after 'alike'
You've the potential to write big and beautiful!
Write! Write! Write!
Happy Writing!




CateRose17 says...


Thank you so much, MrBrainwasher! I am adding the missing punctuations now.




*cries into coffee*
— LadyLizz