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The Sorcerers of Hisderat, Chapter 5

by HarryHardy


Chapter 5

The Battle of the Rooftop

Terry dragged his right arm in a circle, a midnight black disc of energy forming on his right arm. It flickered weakly. Oh dear.That's not good. Damn diagnostics. He rolled out of the way as the men peppered the satellite dish with holes. On his left, the man who'd gotten him into this spot in first place, also rolled out, a brightly shimmering blue shield on his right arm. Who the hell is that man? Urrgh...Terry come on you need to focus on not becoming riddled with holes. Questions later. Terry came up standing and poured all the remaining power he had into his shield.

Several rounds of 35 caliber later and his shield had taken significant damage. It was barely holding on, the light flickering like a faulty light bulb. Luckily at that moment, the jellyfish man himself provided a distraction. The man dispelled his shield and jumped forward, transforming in mid air, and landing in front of the two gunmen as a fearsome...A poodle. What? Is this guy off his rocker? The poodle barked in the most intimidating voice it could muster while Terry looked on in confusion almost missing the two bullets that proceeded to shatter his shield. As he dropped to the ground, and fired off a curse, he finally realized that it was probably his scrambler that was responsible for the poodle that was now running under the legs of the other gunman.

In front of him, the other armed gunman dodged his curse, and proceeded to leave several holes in the spot that Terry had just being standing on. He attempted to conjure a fire wall but the spell refused to charge up. Why did this have to happen right after I cast that three hour diagnostic chain? Gahh. He took a quick look back. The roof's edge was only a few feet away. He fired off a weak black lightning bolt to keep the man occupied as he retreated to the edge.

The gunman in front of him dodged the lightning bolt, and stopped to reload. Further away, a very angry dude had replaced the poodle and was currently blasting the other gunman with several volleys of slashers and shards of ice. Well time for me to leave before that one decides to come after me. That's not a fight I'm going to win in this condition. He only hesitated for a moment before he did a backflip right off the edge.

As he fell, he saw the other lady, glowing an iridescent pink, land on the roof where he'd been moments ago. Oh lord, with a shade of pink that ridiculous, it's a small wonder no one runs away after one look at that color. Terry twisted in the air, righting himself. He used the last of very depleted magic reserves to slow his fall down just enough to avoid fracturing anything. He landed heavily, a spike of pain running through his already bruised leg. Thank the gods I wore that armor. If I had forgotten today...I don't even want to think about that. He glanced up at the battle still taking place on the rooftop.

It was a complete warzone. The assault rifles were running through their ammo faster than an ice cream truck on a hot summer day. Blue and Pink curses flew everywhere. Poodle man was goading the gunmen on and darting about doing all sorts of fancy gymnastics. Pink lady was sticking to basics. Her movements were stiff. A flash of guilt ran through Terry. She was just in the way . There's nothing I could have done. Terry continued to study the two. He wanted to leave, get started on looking for wherever that damned woman had taken the briefcase to. I am not letting that case go to them. Not today. Not ever. But that look...why what was she so scared of?

Terry continued to puzzle over it, keeping one eye on the fight. The woman's henchmen had finally run out of ammunition. Beams of energy, orange and brown had joined the fray. They were much duller than the positively glowing pink and blue curses but the sheer number was keeping the other two, probably tired from fighting him, occupied. Terry turned to leave and began walking. I have to get out of here. Or else, without teleportation or magic, I'm a sitting duck.  He stopped. Wait a minute. Those two have the other case...I could just as easily follow them to their hideout or whatever. Maybe even go help them in the fight and gain their favor. Yes that’s much easier. He turned back towards the building and charged inside. Now where is the damn elevator?

There was a bored looking receptionist behind an ancient wooden counter. The walls were painted a drab beige color. He looked around frantically. There were several under watered potted plants near the desk and tucked away in a corner....two steel elevator doors. He ran towards them, ignoring the receptionist's half-hearted call for him to stop, and frantically pressed the button. The display lit up, indicating that the car was currently on the 20th floor. He barely managed to stop himself from punching the control panel.

After twenty grueling seconds, the elevator doors finally opened with a pleasant 'DING' and he rushed in, punching the button to take him to the top floor. The elevator began climbing. Classical music played in the background, only increasing his anger. 24 floors later he charged out, looking for the staircase leading to the roof. That took him another thirty seconds to locate. Why are these things not marked clearly? He charged up the stairs, taking them four at a time. Terry burst through the door and immediately had to duck as an orange beam missed him by inches and blasted the door behind him, splitting it in two.

He concentrated and tried to summon something, anything, to his hand but it was still only the barest flicker of black light. Note to self: Do not charge into battles without a plan. He moved away from the destroyed door, surveying the scene. Poodle man and pink lady were back to back. They were alternating between the offensive and defensive, their fighting styles flowing together like they were executing a well practiced dance. Pink lady was firing off spell chain after spell chain, interlaced with poodle man's shards of ice and lightning bolts. An impressive dome of energy flickered around them. Pink and Blue light interwoven together into one translucent shield that moved with them, absorbing the weak orange and brown light headed their way. As Terry watched, another brown beam bounced off the shield and headed right for him. He rolled under it and slowly approached the two henchmen. Looks like I have to do this the old fashioned way.

He walked up to the men, taking care to stay right behind them to avoid being hit with a lethal jet of pink light or skewered by an ice shard. After a lot of tiptoeing, he came up right behind the man, getting ready to attack from behind. As he positioned his feet to lash out with a punch, a foot connected squarely with Terry's nether regions and he folded like a collapsible lawn chair. The man turned to face Terry, mouth twisted into a sneer. Apparently he had not been fooled by the tiptoeing. 

Fortunately for Terry, that was a big mistake on the part of the man. The pink and blue duo, probably spotting the distraction, both sent out attacks in his direction. The already weakened orange shield the man was hiding behind shattered, and a pink spell chain slammed into the man. Whatever the damage was, it wasn't visible, but the man doubled over in pain.

Terry staggered onto his feet, trying desperately not to fall to his knees as the remaining henchman, distracted by his fallen partner, was skewered through the knee with an ice shard. The man collapsed beside his partner.

The light show on the opposite end of the roof stopped as the shield was dispelled. Both of them were breathing heavily as they walked over to the two fallen henchmen. Before they could do anything, the two henchmen both produced two grenades from their pockets, popped the pins and teleported away. Holy crap.

The poodle man acted fast. He jumped at the grenades, transforming into a gorilla and grabbing them before launching them skyward. Not a moment too soon. The grenades, flung much higher than any man could have flung them, had barely reached the apex of their climb before they exploded, raining shrapnel down on the three of them. A big umbrella shield by the pink lady deflected most of it, with only a couple of the larger pieces falling harmlessly onto the roof, robbed of their momentum.

Terry breathed a sigh of relief as he bent down, putting his hands on his knees, still recovering from the earlier attack. He took a moment to catch his breath and straightened. He straightened, legs still shaky, before offering the two a smile. Time to see if I they are up for a deal.

"Ahh...so Mr. Dirt King, you got a name?" asked the man.

"Clarke. Terry Clarke," replied Terry in between deep breaths," and yours?"

"Oh that's not important...I just need your name for the report," replied the man.

"Wait a minute...what report?" asked Terry.

"You are under arrest as per the orders of S.W.O.R.D the Strategic Worldwide Operations and Reconnaissance Division," said the pink lady moving behind him and roughly grabbing his hands. He felt the cold metal of handcuffs slide around his wrists. Well that backfired spectacularly.

"Arrest report," explained the man," thank you for your cooperation."


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Wed Aug 12, 2020 12:39 am
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EternalRain wrote a review...



Hey Harry! Sorry I’m so late with this, I keep slacking!

Great chapter! Lots of action this chapter (reminds me of the first chapter hehe). I’m not great with critiquing action-packed scenes in general just because I don’t write or read them often. One thing I think this scene could possibly be enhanced with is showcasing more of Terry’s thinking. Not necessarily thoughts in italics, but more his decisions/goals in this chapter (was he trying to escape from them or knock them out...?) Things like that.

Overall, while it is fast-paced, some more drawn-out emotions from Terry would be good to not only get the reader to understand how he’s feeling in the moment but also develop him as a character. There was a bit in the beginning but I would have liked more throughout the middle of the chapter and maybe at the end, especially when the chaos finally cools down and he’s confronted by Harry.

Other than that, I really liked how Rose and Harry were depicted in this chapter;

They were alternating between the offensive and defensive, their fighting styles flowing together like they were executing a well practiced dance.


Like this line in particular. That’s the a great way to describe the comfort Rose and Harry have in each other when fighting.

I am not letting that case go to them. Not today. Not ever. But that look...why what was she so scared of?


This line is so good. It also makes me wonder if perhaps Terry will team up with Rose and Harry to get the case back? I’m also just wondering in general how Terry (and the information that Terry possibly knows?) will help out Rose and Harry. We get to see Terry’s perspective though so I have a suspicion he’s an important character in the novel (and maybe not just a crutch for Rose and Harry?). Curious to find out.

Peace,
~EternalRain




HarryHardy says...


Thank you for the review!!
Hmm....I will definitely keep this in mind when I write draft 2 and I'll try to show more of what Terry feels.
I'm glad you liked Harry and Rose in this chapter.
And Terry....that prediction is ;)
Thanks again!!



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Mon Aug 03, 2020 5:48 pm
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whatchamacallit wrote a review...



Hi Harry! I'm here for another review!

As another reviewer pointed out, there isn't much dialogue in this chapter, but I don't mind that. Especially since we get to hear a lot of Terry's thoughts and see some of the reasons behind his actions - it's a great chance to develop a character.

I do have to agree with Icy though, the characters - the male ones at least - all feel pretty similar. I totally get that it's super easy to write them all similar-ish to yourself - I do that all the time - but a trick I've found sometimes works is choosing which of your traits you give to which characters. For example everybody's a mix of emotional and logical, so choose one character to be more emotional, and the other to be more logical, and think about what your two different responses to something might be depending on what mood ("emotional" or "logical") you're in. Obviously people are more complicated than that, but it's a good starter for differentiating characters. (Hopefully that explanation makes sense, if not feel free to ask for clarification!)

(Another thing you could try is have one character be completely the opposite of you, so they always react to things in a totally different way than you would.)

I do think you've done a good job with descriptions, there's enough for the reader to know what's going on but it doesn't slow down the plot too much!

I have just a couple nitpicky things I'd like to point out as well.

Luckily at that moment, the jellyfish man himself provided a distraction.

^I could just be forgetting someone, but I'm not sure who the jellyfish man is? Is that Harry?

Terry turned to leave but found that he could not.

^Why can't he leave? Is there a spell trapping him?

Before they could do anything, the two henchmen both produced two grenades from their pockets, popped the pins and teleported away. Holy Crap.

^I don't think "crap" needs to be capitalized here.

Other than that, I don't have much to critique about the chapter! You've got another great cliffhanger ending, I'm curious what happens next! I also like that we're seeing different points of view - I'm not entirely sure who the "good guys" are yet, but it's interesting seeing everyone's different perspectives.

Keep writing!

whatchamacallit




HarryHardy says...


Hey!!! Thank you for the review!!
For some reason this did not show up in my notifications(second time it happened to one of my stories) and I only saw it now. Sorry I took so long to reply.
Ahh...glad to hear that...that is why I decided to split this battle in half and risk a somewhat short chapter just to give Terry a full chapter for his thoughts on the matter to be revealed.
Ahh...thank you so much for the advice...I'll work on that and try my best to make them sound more unique.
Hmm..yes the jellyfish man is Harry...I probably shouldn't have referenced that tiny detail from chapter 1 so don't worry.
And Terry that's like to show he has a bit of a revelation there like his thoughts are stopping him from running away immediately. No spell. I think that was phrased badly probably because that monologue there was going to be totally different but I rephrased that because it was a little unrealistic. Think I forgot to change that line accordingly.
And right...I'll fix both those issues.
Ahh....yes...glad you liked that cliffhanger. I think we are approaching the end of act 1 soon. A lot of answers and even more questions to follow.
Thanks again!!



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Sun Aug 02, 2020 1:53 pm
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brotherGeo wrote a review...



Hello Comrade!
Another action filled chapter, good keeps us on our toes. Dialogue was a little lacking in this and as IcyFlame said your character dialogue isn't super indistinguishable. but it is action filled so it compensate for itself.

The man dispelled his shield and jumped forward, transforming in mid air, and landing in front of the two gunmen as a fearsome...A poodle. What? Is this guy off his rocker? The poodle barked in the most intimidating voice it could muster while Terry looked on in confusion

Honestly, that is quite the fearsome poodle.

ink lady was sticking to basics. Her movements were stiff. A flash of guilt ran through Terry. She was just in the way . There's nothing I could have done.

This is an amazing bit of characterisation for Terry. i wonder who he really is and what are his motives.

After twenty grueling seconds, the elevator doors finally opened with a pleasant 'DING' and he rushed in, punching the button to take him to the top floor. The elevator began climbing. Classical music played in the background, only increasing his anger. 24 floors later he charged out, looking for the staircase leading to the roof. That took him another thirty seconds to locate. Why are these things not marked clearly? He charged up the stairs, taking them four at a time. Terry burst through the door and immediately had to duck as an orange beam missed him by inches and blasted the door behind him, splitting it in two.

Terry is in the classic, 'using the elevator in a pitched fight' trope.

He walked up to the men, taking care to stay right behind them to avoid being hit with a lethal jet of pink light or skewered by an ice shard. After a lot of tiptoeing, he came up right behind the man, getting ready to attack from behind. As he positioned his feet to lash out with a punch, a foot connected squarely with Terry's nether regions and he folded like a collapsible lawn chair. The man turned to face Terry, mouth twisted into a sneer. Apparently he had not been fooled by the tiptoeing.

Poor guy, a physical attack would've been so cool too.

"You are under arrest as per the orders of S.W.O.R.D the Strategic Worldwide Operations and Reconnaissance Division," said the pink lady moving behind him and roughly grabbing his hands. He felt the cold metal of handcuffs slide around his wrists. Well that backfired spectacularly.

"Arrest report," explained the man," thank you for your cooperation."

Nice ending, left me on the edge of my seat. I want to know more about Terry, I wonder if S.W.O.R.D will interrogate him or something.

Overall an excellent continuation. Lots of well described well paced action, Dialogue was a little lacking but it is still a great chapter. Could you please tag me for the next chapters please. :D
Keep Writing!
-brotherGeo




HarryHardy says...


Thank you for the review!!
Ahh....yaa Terry was alone for most of this chapter so the dialogue was on the low side...and yaa....the thoughts are a little similar (because they are all modeled after mine).
Glad you liked it. I'll definitely tag you. :D
Thanks again!!



IcyFlame says...


Ah I see! I got a bit mixed up with all the people there xD



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Sun Aug 02, 2020 12:58 pm
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IcyFlame wrote a review...



Going to tick this one off my to do list!

Here we go.

Oh dear. That's not good. Damn diagnostics.

All your character voices are quite similar. I don't know if this is just because they all seem to say/think 'damn' a lot (I know you love the word ;) ) but whatever it is I think you need to work on making them a little more distinct. So far I find Rose is a little different, but for the other three, if you didn't tell me whose PoV the chapter was from I would really struggle to guess!

Luckily at that moment, the jellyfish man himself provided a distraction. The man dispelled his shield and jumped forward, transforming in mid air, and landing in front of the two gunmen as a fearsome...A poodle. What? Is this guy off his rocker? The poodle barked in the most intimidating voice it could muster while Terry looked on in confusion almost missing the two bullets that proceeded to shatter his shield.

I don't know that this chapter isn't a bit too much in terms of action. The previous section was also quite fast paced, and I feel like I'm going through a lot of this at top speed without actually learning much about the characters. That said, this is only chapter five, so I'm going to try and withhold too much comment on pacing until we get to like seven or eight.

The assault rifles were running through their ammo faster than an ice cream truck on a hot summer day.

Haha

After twenty grueling seconds, the elevator doors finally opened with a pleasant 'DING' and he rushed in, punching the button to take him to the top floor.

'Pleasant' seems out of place for me here.

24 floors later he charged out, looking for the staircase leading to the roof. That took him another thirty seconds to locate.

You've switched between numbers and words - pick one please :)

Why are these things not marked clearly?

I feel you, Terry.

"Clarke. Terry Clarke," replied Terry in between deep breaths," and yours?"

I'm amazed he gave his name so readily.

Wow, that took less time than I thought to catch him! Interested to see how Harry & Rose take the news that the Dirt King has been caught by someone other than them. I'd also like to know how SWORD fits in with whatever organisation Harry & Rose are part of.

Look forward to reading the next bit!

Icy




HarryHardy says...


Thank you for the review!!
Ahh...well I do love that word far too much.
Hmm...this is pretty much the climax for the first act of this story...so it should even out soon enough.
Ahh...there was a pretty good reason as to why Terry gave his name up so easily....but that will spoil the story so....yaa
Ohh...wait a minute...Harry and Rose are the ones who caught him...not sure how you got that mixed up.
Thanks again!!




gonna be honest, i dont believe in the moon
— sheyren