Young Writers Society

Home » Literary works » Novel / Chapter » Action / Adventure

E - Everyone

A Fight for Survival ~ Darkness Approaches Chapter 10

by FlamingPhoenix


A cold shiver shot down Viper’s spine as the last of the copper sun sank below the horizon, the bright oranges and purples fading along with it, the night sky now littered in endless stars. Slowly the three pale moons rose into the sky after one another, finding their place in the dark blue canvas.

Slowly the two dragons began to glide toward the ground, their wings fanned out around them slowing they're decent.

Viper watched as Nuddia tucked her wings in and dived towards the grass floor below. Before she passed the canopy she sprouted her wings out slowing her fall again. The small scales on her wings now a pale color in the light of the three moons.

Diving after her Viper shot through the moonlit leaves sending the small feather-like greenery gliding down to the leaf-littered floor. Wings shooting out from his sides Viper glided down to the soft earthy floor. Landing on the grass-covered floor, Viper watched Nuddia glide onto a tree branch just up ahead, she quickly wrapped her tail around it to keep herself staple.

Looking out to the edge of the forest Viper could see the dark tunnels leading into Twisted Caves, their black gaping holes sending cold shivers down his spine. Attached to the gray rough rock were clumps of moss, the small leafs draping over the hard surface.

Jumping down from her branch Nuddia walked up to the larger cave opening, “We should take this one.” Nuddia said turning to face Viper.

Quickly nodding Viper walked up to the opening, the dark shadows coming from it encasing him in shadows. Cold shivers ran up his body as he thought of the myths the elders had told him when he was a dragonet. The stories of panther-like animals living in these caves, though it is only a myth, he did wish there was another way into Onyx Valley. But they didn’t have time to fly the long way.

‘Here goes nothing’. Viper thought as he walked further down the tunnel. His footsteps suddenly feeling heavy as he slowly walked towards the opening. Viper knew that this was the only way to get to Onex Valley without being detected by other tribes.

Nuddia sniffed the air in the cave, her eyes brightened, looking at Viper she said. “I can smell something in there.” With that she slipped into the cave, her tail fading into the darkness.

With a sigh Viper slowly followed after her, he cringed at the silence that lurked in the cave. He looked around for any sine of Nuddia. But the dragoness was out of sight. With a hiss of frustration Viper quietly called. “Nuddia!”

“Viper come on!” A softer voice called out to him.

Viper could tell that she wasn’t too far ahead, but a bit too far for his liking. Breathing in a large breath he let it sit in his throat until he could feel a burning sensation and slowly the tunnel he was walking through began to light up, as the fire sparked in his mouth. Slowly adjusting to the light he began to slink forward.

He could see Nuddia’s shadow dance along the lowly lit walls. Her nose pressed to the ground as she followed a sent. Quickly Viper hurried after her, when he was next to her he slowed his pace.

“Nuddia I don’t think now is the best time to be hunting.” Viper hissed at her. While flicking his tail like a cat ready to pounds. "Don't you remember the stories the elders used to tell us as dragonets?”

Nuddia looked over her shoulder and gave Viper a frown. “You said you would hunt later, and those were just silly myths. It isn't real. These caves have only been a danger back in the first and second wars. Besides the animals that used to live here in that time are dead." She shook her head, the long black horns on her head shining in the glow of the fire in Viper's mouth. “Look over there.” She jerked her head right, pointing towards a dark shadow.

Turning his head in the direction she pointed in Viper almost jumped back in fright. The orange glow of the fire in his mouth lit up a pile of bones their rough white surfaces untouched. On but further from the pile on bones was the scull, large white teeth spiked out of the open jaws, the small sockets seeming to still hold the look of evil in the animal's face. Quickly looking away Viper walked after Nuddia again.

When they got a bit further into the cave Viper just happens to look done at the ground when he stepped on a stick. What he saw only made him more worried, a nest of large sticks. He leaned down to sniff them, but instead of having a sent hit his nose, some sort of wet substance did. ‘What the?’ Viper thought touching it with his talon. Shaking his head he breathed the fire out of his mouth onto the nest, picking up one of the sticks he carried it in his mouth so he could catch up with Nuddia who had walked further ahead.

As Viper walked he began to notes more stick-like nest along the floor just like the one before. There was just enough space for him to walk without stepping on any of them. Fear began to tug at him as he took a closer look at one. It had small round white eggs in it, the frail things were covered in small sticks to keep them warm and out of view.

Gripping the rough stick harder in his mouth Viper walked up to Nuddia who was also eyeing one of the nests. “What do you think this is? Do you think it could be an old nest form back in the days?” she asked.

With a shiver, Viper shook his head. “I doubt it. I saw eggs in one of the other nests.”

Nuddia’s eyes widened. She knew what that meant just as much as he did. “Are you sure they weren't dragon eggs?” she asked looking down the dark tunnel they just came from.

Viper nodded. “Yes.” Without another word he walked right past the shocked dragoness and carried on down the path they were taking, still holding onto the burning stick with his mouth. He was glad that he had another thing to worry about so he could take his mind off of the mission.

Viper sniffed the air again. He tried to hold back a gag as a revolting smell hit his nose. With a shake of his head, he kept on moving, hoping the smell would pass. Nuddia close behind him. She must have smelt it too, he could hear her let out an ungrateful groan.

“What is that?” she asked as she shook her head and the rest of her golden scaled body.

Shrugging Viper turned down another path, with a feeling of dread in the pit of his stomach he kept on moving. Something wasn’t right, they should have gotten out of the caves by know. Where they going round in circles?

‘I guess the caves are a lot bigger than it looks.’ Viper shook his head. Hoping that would help him keep a clear head. They could make it through this, they just had to get through the mountain. Which is a lot easier said than done.

“We should pick up the speed.” Viper called over his shoulder, the best he could with a stick in his mouth. He slowly began to pick up the speed. Having a feeling it was about midday outside.

***

It felt like hours had passed when Viper finally began to feel like they were almost at the end of their walk through the caves. As he had been walking Viper couldn’t shake off the thought of what the nests he had seen earlier meant. Was there living things in this mountain, or was it what Nuddia had said, were they just old nests from back in the day? Though somehow he didn’t think that was the case.

With a sigh of relief, Viper made his way towards the dim light now flooding into the tunnels. He was just glad that they will make it out… alive anyway.

As Viper stepped out one of the many openings to the caves, he scrunched his eyes closed as the blinding light hit his coal eyes, the fresh air coming from the forest a few miles ahead of them now blew past his face, soothing his aching body.

Viper sighed as the warmth from the sun touched his cold golden scales. It felt like they had been in those caves for years. But he knew they weren’t even in there the whole night. ‘Now that I think about it, it wasn't too hard getting out of there. But I still have the feeling we were being followed.’ Viper shook his head, whatever it was won't follow them out of the caves, but it was best he kept a lookout.

“Come on Viper we should keep moving,” Nuddia said to him, as she walked passed him, her tail wrapped around one of his front legs and pulled him along with her as she walked.

Viper almost tripped over his talons as Nuddia pulled him along. “We should keep an eye out for some pry, we haven’t eaten in hours.” As he finished what he was saying his stomach grumbled out in protest.

Nuddia just gave him a nod, as she kept on moving. Both dragons slowly began to pick up speed as they weaved through the trees, their leaves shaking and falling to the grassy ground below as the two dragons passed. Stopping Viper began to sniff the air, the faint scent of rabbit filling his nose. Going down into a hunting crouch he began to stalk through the undergrowth. But not before he signaled Nuddia to follow him. As he crept through the long grass, he could feel Nuddia stalk away from him and go in another direction. Knowing what she was doing, Viper kept on moving like a panther. He could feel his heart thumping in his chest as the thrill of the hunt began to run through his body. He could hear the small animal moving through the grass, nibbling at it, as it moved.

His eyes turning into slits, he slowly edged further into the undergrowth. The smell of the rabbit filling his nose even more. He could also feel Nuddia's presence close by. It all happened in an instant. He lunged at the fury white animal his talons reached out ready to pin it to the ground. He could see Nuddia's dark eyes on the other side of the small clearing, she was waiting for the rabbit to make a break for it. And just like that, the little hear ball dashed in Nuddia's direction. And then it was all over in an instant. Clamping her jaws shut she quickly killed the helpless animal without a sound.


Note: You are not logged in, but you can still leave a comment or review. Before it shows up, a moderator will need to approve your comment (this is only a safeguard against spambots). Leave your email if you would like to be notified when your message is approved.







Is this a review?


  

Comments



User avatar
263 Reviews


Points: 13000
Reviews: 263

Donate
Mon Sep 02, 2019 10:28 pm
View Likes
mellifera wrote a review...



Hey FlamingPhoenix! I'm back again for another chapter!

Hopefully I'm a little more up to speed now, but you now that I haven't read anything before the last chapter, so disclaimer and all that!


A cold shiver shot down Viper's spine as the last of the copper sun sank below the horizon, the bright oranges and purples fading along with it, the night sky now littered in endless stars.


YES this is the description I ADORE. This sounds BEAUTIFUL and I want to be there to see it <3

Slowly the two dragons began to glide toward the ground, their wings fanned out around them slowing they're decent.


I think you know what I'm going to say here based on my other review ;) (also !decent" should be "descent"!)

she sprouted her wings out slowing her fall again.


"Sprouted" makes it sound like she just grew wings, when that was clearly not the case? "she spread her wings out" would work better! (And, again, slow is once more repetitive)

Diving after her Viper shot through the moonlit leaves sending the small feather-like greenery gliding down to the leaf-littered floor.


Pulling this one for the repetition, but also because I'm a little confused? Aren't they trying to avoid being seen/noticed? Why would he fly right though the trees and upset the leaves? That would be pretty loud and obvious, and would attract attention to what he was doing.

their black gaping holes sending cold shivers down his spine.


Haha I'm sure by now I sound like a broken record and a bit hypocritical, but repetition is really hurting you here. "Cold shivers" was how you described it at the beginning, and although it's been a few paragraphs, it's noticeable enough that I wanted to point it out.

"We should take his one."


The cave? They can't "take" the cave with them? I think it would work better if she said "We should use this one"? Or something like that?
(also I'm just going to point out the comma before this dialogue should be a period, and the period at the end of the dialogue should be a comma)

the dark shadows coming from it encasing him in shadows.


the shadows encased in him shadows?

Cold shivers ran up his body


:P

the myths the elders had told him when he was a dragonet. The stories of panther-like animals living in these caves, though it is only a myth,


"Is" should be "was" because "is" makes it a tense change.

His footsteps suddenly feeling heavy as he slowly walked towards the opening.


Do his footsteps really feel heavier or just louder? I think you mean the former, in which case, perhaps "His feet grew heavier with every step he took towards the cave" to avoid the telling from "feeling".

the only way to get to Onex Valley without being detected by the other tribes.


"Onex" should be "Onyx" (just a little typo there).
I thought they were going through the caves because it was quicker? You're mentioning "why" they have to go through the caves a lot, but you hadn't mentioned this earlier, and now I'm wondering why?

looking at Viper she said. "I can smell something in there."


The period should be a comma, but honestly? I think you could just end the sentence after "her eyes brightened" and go right to the dialogue.

With a sigh Viper slowly followed after her, he cringed at the silence that lurked in the cave.


I would recommend doing a CTRL+F search for "slow/slowly" because it's popping up a lot in your story, and actually, most of the time it's unnecessary.
Also,, I wouldn't say silence "lurks", I'd probably use "the silence that hung in the cave" instead? But what about the sound of Nuddia moving? Is she really that quiet?

Breathing in a large breath


he,,, breathed in,,, a breath,,,,

slowly the tunnel he was walking through began to light up, as the fire sparked in his mouth. Slowly adjusting to the light he began to slink forward.



He could see Nuddia's shadow dance along the lowly2 lit walls.


Pulling this for "see" again, and also for "lowly", which isn't quite the appropriate context for that word? "low lit" or "dimly lit" would work much better.

she followed a sent.


"sent" should be "scent"!

Quickly Viper hurried after her, when he was next to her he slowed his pace.


I'm actually going to start bring up "quickly" too because, while not as frequent as "slow/slowly/slowed", it's starting to get closer.

While flicking his tail like a cat ready to pounds.


"pounds" should be "pounce".


To catch little spelling mistakes like "pounds" or "sent", you might want to try using some kind of online editor? I don't know what program you use to write (I use Word, which automatically brings up spelling errors and so on), but if you use something like Grammarly or Hemingway App, it'll usually help to catch what spellings fit what context (not always, but usually!) :)


She jerked her head right, pointing towards a dark shadow.

Turning his head in the direction she pointed in


The orange glow of the fire in his mouth lit up a pile of bones


So, this sentence is actually unnecessarily long. 1) The readers know the fire is in his mouth, you don't have to keep mentioning that every time you bring up the fire. 2) They also know that the fire is orange.
"The glow of his fire lit up a pile of bones, the rough white surfaces gleaming." See how much shorter that is, while still getting all the same details you mentioned in the original sentence?

on but further from the pile on bones was the scull


"Lying nearby the rest of the bones was the skull"
The original sentence, while I understand what you were trying to say, doesn't sound quite right. Skull is also spelled wrong, but the main issue is just how this sentence was set up. It lacked execution, but it's a simple fix! I'll bring up the rest of it as well:

the small sockets seeming to still hold the look of evil in the animal's face.


How? It's a skull. All skulls look almost the same, unless it was damaged. Skulls have no way of expression emotion. Perhaps Viper is unsettled by the skull instead? That would give you the same discomforting feeling you're trying (I think?) to give off.

Quickly looking away viper walked after Nuddia again.


When they got a bit further into the cave Viper just happens to look done


"happens" should be "happened" (switching tenses) and "done" should be "down.

What he saw only made him more worried,


Might I suggest "What he saw made his stomach churn"? You can tell us he was worried, or you can give us the sensation of how he's experiencing that worry, which ends being much more impactful and spices up your prose much more.

but instead of having a sent hit his nose


"scent"

As Viper walked he began to notes more


"Walked" is starting to wear on like "quickly" and "slow/slowly/slowed". Also, is "notes" supposed to be "notice"?

along the floor just like the one before. There was just enough space


I'm also tragically bad at this, but watch out for filler words like "just", "very", and "really". They don't actually add anything to your writing, and can easily be substituted for stronger words rather than using them (for example, instead of "really big", it could be "humongous").

Removing "just" hardly affects the story/writing, which tells you they're just unnecessary for what you're trying to get across.

She knew what that meant just as much as he did.


she asked looking down the dark tunnel they just came from.


Without another word he walked right past


You can easily substitute walking for "trekking" or "padding" or plenty of other synonyms. Alternatively, do you have to describe his movements so frequently? We know he's walking, until you mention the occasional stop, but it's far to frequent to warrant so much attention.

Nuddia close behind him.


Should be "Nuddia was close behind him."

She must have smelt it too


I already pointed this out in the last review, but just for posterity it should be "smelled".

Something wasn't right, they should have gotten out of the caves by know.


"Know" should be "now", but also? It doesn't seem like they've been travelling all that long? How could they be out of the caves already??

they just had to get through the mountain.


Which is a lot easier said t han done.


"Which was a lot easier".

He slowly began to pick up the speed.


(pick up speed is also repetitive after Viper's dialogue)

Having a feeling it was about midday outside.


How would he know this?? What does "I think it's midday right now" even feel like?? (also, if it's midday just outside, what time is it in the cave? not midday?)

It felt like hours had passed when Viper finally began to feel like they were almost at the end of their walk through the caves.


There's two quite blatant "telling" sections in this line here with "felt" and "feeling.

As he had been walking


Was there living things in this mountain, was it what Nuddia had said, were they just old nests


"Was there living things in this mountain" should be "Were there living things in the mountain, or was it what Nuddia had said, that they were old nests?" Or something similar (but, y'know, without the tense change and "just").

He was just glad that they will make it out


"He was glad that they had made it out" to fix the tense change.
(also?? what's with the "alive anyway" comment? I'm not sure I understand why that's there)

as the blinding light hit his coal eyes


This is not a situation where I would be thinking about what colour my eyes were?? Same goes for :

Viper sighed as the warmth from the sun touched his cold golden scales.


Viper shook his head, whatever it was won't follow them out of the caves


"won't" should be "wouldn't".
Also!! This is how you continue after a thought! You don't have to add "he thought" to it, because the italics show the reader that he's thinking, as well as how different the voice is from the flow of prose.

"Come on Viper we should keep moving,"


Did they stop?? I don't see anywhere that it says they stopped.

and pulled him along with her as she walked.

Viper almost tripped over his talons as Nuddia pulled him along.


"We should keep an eye out for some pry, we haven't eaten in hours."


"pry" should be "prey".

Nuddia just gave him a nod


What's wrong with "Nuddia nodded"? Why does she have to "give it" do him??

Both dragons slowly began to pick up speed


And just like that, the little hear ball dashed in Nuddia's direction.


"hairball"?

Clamping her jaws shut she quickly killed the helpless animal without a sound.


Have you ever heard a predator's jaws locking around something small like that? Bones crunch. It's pretty gross. My cat's done it with mice before.


Again, this is a really intriguing story! I'm always 100% down for dragons, I adore dragons. And the whole idea they're on some kind of mission and having to be on constant alert for other dangers is pretty neat too. It has a very wilderness vibe to it that I'm loving.

That said, the repetitions are really harming your writing. Normally, when there's a few scattered in your piece, they're minor nuisances, but generally easy to glaze over. However, there's so many in both chapters I read. You want to be aware of that, even when you're writing! I know that I do this at times as well, but it's one of those things that you want to mentally check on to see "Oh, am I doing this thing again?" or "Having I used that word/description too much already?". Luckily! It's an easy fix! But I'd be more alert for those in the future.

Otherwise, that's all I have for you today! Keep up the great work, and let me know if you have any questions! Happy to talk :D

I hope you have a wonderful day, and Happy RevMo!

Image






Again thanks for the review.



User avatar
291 Reviews


Points: 18286
Reviews: 291

Donate
Sun Sep 01, 2019 10:37 pm
View Likes
Liberty wrote a review...



Hiya Flames!

Hope you're doing well today or tonight, depending on what side of the world you're on, obviously. I'm here to give you a review and to give this piece a little push so it can be a step away from sitting in the Green Room. Let's get started, now shall we? Alrighty. :)

Your descriptions. My oh my. It's so good! I can picture very single thing so clearly it's like I'm watching a literal movie! No joke. And I'm so excited to see what's really in the cave! This is getting me j i t t e r y... Eek! I can see your punctuation getting better and better as the chapters go by. A pat on the back from me! (:

There's a couple of things I wanna point out real quick. Not really big stuff, but you know me... The usual nitpicky person. :P

Landing on the grass-covered floor, Viper watched Nuddia glide onto a tree branch just up ahead, she quickly wrapped her tail around it to keep herself staple.


Staple is like those staplers things that you put in staplers. I'm pretty sure you meant stable, instead.

Viper knew that this was the only way to get to Onex Valley without being detected by other tribes.


...I thought it was Onyx Valley and not Onex Valley...

While flicking his tail like a cat ready to pounds.


Hmm, this sentence doesn't quite make sense, but I know what you mean. Maybe:

Flicking his tail like a cat when it's ready to pounce.

Something like that. Not sure. ^^

When they got a bit further into the cave Viper just happens to look done at the ground when he stepped on a stick.


Wouldn't it be Viper just happened, since this is in past tense and not present tense?

He leaned down to sniff them, but instead of having a sent hit his nose, some sort of wet substance did.


Not sent, but instead: scent. It's so confusing, it pisses me off, sometimes.

As Viper walked he began to notes more stick-like nest along the floor just like the one before.


Instead of notes, I'd probably write note.

Where they going round in circles?


Where is not the correct word for this context. Were would do much better.

“We should keep an eye out for some pry, we haven’t eaten in hours.”


Pry is a totally different word from prey. I'm pretty sure you meant prey.

And just like that, the little hear ball dashed in Nuddia's direction.


The little hear ball? Is it hear, or some other word? I'm sure it's not hear.

Alright. So that's it for my critiquing. I hope it helped in some way. Anyways, I'm done with my review. Of course, if you have any questions, feel free to ask me whenever!

And as always...

Keep on writing!

~Liberty






Thanks for the review Lib. I'll try and fix everything when I get time.



Liberty says...


Sure thing!




'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