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(LMSVI) The Ruptured Shadow, Chapter 4.4

by KateHardy


“Exactly. Mr. Blah Blah here was a member of a club that’s not meant to exist until two hundred years after his time, which means, either he was dabbling in a future he wasn’t meant to be a part of, or he was sent back in time. Judging from the fact that the time council hasn’t barged in here to take all our documents from us, we can safely assume he’s from this time, but he was messing with forces he probably shouldn’t have.”

“Or maybe that has nothing to do with the death at all because if he was killed from the future, the time council would still be interested in.” It was Safi. I smiled again. This team really was going to be great.

“And that is the clincher here. Good work, Safi. We do not have any way to connect him to a murderer through that information. The only thing that actually makes that interesting is that it proves he isn’t just a nobody lost in the middle of the dessert, this guy was linked to somebody in some way, and we’ll have a thread to pull at if we want to know what this guy was doing before he was killed.”

“Not the strongest of threads, but given his lack of any other threads, I suppose we just kind of have to take it,” said Sally. Anna nodded.

“Correct.”

“So, we’re definitely going to be heading out to that site before long I assume?” asked Serafina.

Anna nodded again. “Yeah. We’ve got something here, but really none of this is compelling enough on its own for us to come to a conclusion any better than what the local authorities already managed. We’ll need to go there to get any further, which well it is kind of our job to get further.

“That it is,” agreed Sally. “So, then what actually is going to be the move here.”

“Yeah, that is sort of what we have to decide here. I’ve gone ahead and pretty much finished here as far as all the details are concerned. There is maybe a thing or two to be considered about the little announcement I made earlier but really there’s nothing much to that either.”

“So that means now we got to plan our next course of action?” asked Serafina.

“That would be correct. I am open to all the ideas that you guys have in this moment,” said Anna.

“Including me?” asked Sally.

“Well yes, this isn’t a training session, we’re all equally trying to make things work here.”

“Sorry, force of habit,” said Sally, looking a bit sheepish.

Anna waved a hand. “No worries, now worries. You were supposed to be taking these two on a training mission after all. Its just.” Anna shook her head. “Yeah, today has not gone to anyone’s plan after all. I don’t think I’ve ever seen even Kate caught quite so off guard.”

“It definitely takes a pretty sneaky event to catch a seer off guard,” agreed Sally. “She did look a little bit more flustered than she usually is.”

“Yeah,” said Anna. “Okay, well that’s enough being terrified about the future, what can we do to make it better here.”

Serafina jumped up again. “I think we can just go there really. Probably even just this afternoon. If the agency really is in quite this much of a turmoil as you all say, the faster we get this out of their hair the better things will be right?”

Anna smiled, nodding. “I’ll be honest, that sounds awesome. I was downplaying things a bit since this is literally the first day for both of you and I didn’t want to go ahead and get out on the field right on the first day.”

“No, we definitely signed up for that. I would very much like to get out onto the field, first day or otherwise.”

Anna turned to Safi. She was looking ever so slightly lost in thought now as gradually everyone in the room was now looking at her, waiting for her answer.

Safi seemed to snap out of whatever trance of thought she’d been in because she shook her head all of a sudden and went red seeing that everyone was looking at her.

“Sorry, sorry. Yes. Yes. We should go out into the field. That would be a lovely idea.”

“Care to share what had you so enraptured?” asked Sally.

Safi’s blush deepened. “I was trying to see if there was any way to figure out the sandstorm thing. Sorry. It seemed like such a convenient little puzzle and my brain couldn’t leave it alone.”

Sally chuckled. “Ohh. Well don’t worry. Trust me, that is the kind of random though that ends up taking us to new leads in these cases. You’re good.”

Safi was still very red, but she nodded.

Anna cleared her throat, and everyone turned to face here once again. “Alright then its settled. We’re going to go this afternoon on site, which means we have to start getting ready pretty much now. So, unless anyone has any other objections, we have some places to visit first.”

Serafina raised her hand. Anna nodded.

“Places?”

Anna smirked. “Well, we can’t be leaving for the field without a trip to the armory, can we?”

Safi squealed and promptly covered her face. Deciding that now was not the time to tease her about that (mostly because Serafina had turned that way and they were being adorable again) Anna switched off the screen behind her.

“Let’s go team.”

Sally rolled her eyes right on cue.


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Sun Jan 29, 2023 4:45 pm
Spearmint wrote a review...



Woot woot, I’m finally caught up! (To the last posted chapter, at least. >.>) It looks like things are getting even more interesting here, with the time shenanigans… And ee! I thought it might take longer, but I’m delighted to see that they’re actually going to the site soon! :]
The main critique I have is like what Lim said— more description would be wonderful. This chapter is mostly dialogue, which is great, but slipping some details here and there (like physical characteristics, what someone’s voice sounds like, clothes, etc.) would really help the reader visualize and be immersed in the scene!

Mr. Blah Blah here was a member of a club that’s not meant to exist until two hundred years after his time, which means, either he was dabbling in a future he wasn’t meant to be a part of, or he was sent back in time.

Oho, so that’s what they meant about the membership being odd. I wonder if making up a name for that club would be beneficial in grounding the reader in the story? Anyways, I’m getting quite intrigued about Mr. Blah Blah here. 0.0

Or maybe that has nothing to do with the death at all because if he was killed from the future, the time council would still be interested in.

This could just be me, but I don’t really get what Safi’s saying here? How can someone be killed from the future? Like, is an assassin sent from the future, or…?

It definitely takes a pretty sneaky event to catch a seer off guard

I don’t remember if Kate being a seer was mentioned previously, but it definitely adds to her coolness. :] And hmm… this makes me wonder if some rival organization or being is at work, with potential obscuring capabilities?

“I was trying to see if there was any way to figure out the sandstorm thing.

Interesting! If it were me, I’d probably just accept that it’s a fact of the weather there, lol. But if Safi has other ideas or suspicions… I’m curious to find out whenever she brings them up!

Well, we can’t be leaving for the field without a trip to the armory, can we?

!! I’m in agreement with Safi there— exciting!!

This chapter seemed like more buildup to the mission… You’re releasing these details little by little, and it’s keeping me hooked in the story, despite my impatience. >.< Anyways, keep writing, and I hope you have a fantastic day/night! =D




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Thu Jan 05, 2023 2:17 pm
Liminality wrote a review...



Hi Kate!

General Impressions

This chapter has me excited for some timey-wimey shenanigans! And for an epic armor-selecting session perhaps? I guess I’m happy the characters seem excited about this mission – I know if it were me I’d be nervous / scared / spooked at having to solve a murder case – but hey, that’s why they applied for this job! #followyourpassion

Characters

“Or maybe that has nothing to do with the death at all because if he was killed from the future, the time council would still be interested in.” It was Safi. I smiled again. This team really was going to be great.

I can see from here why Anna has this ‘proud grandma’ nickname! I like that she’s taken the lead in this chapter so far. She’s cool and capable so I can totally believe she has a pretty high position in the agency but also has her own vulnerabilities, as shown in this admission:
“Yeah,” said Anna. “Okay, well that’s enough being terrified about the future, what can we do to make it better here.”

Safi squealed and promptly covered her face.

Also I think by this point no one is suspecting Safi of having this ‘dark side’ anymore? Or at least Anna isn’t? Since she’s shown so much behaviour to the contrary.

Descriptions

Something that might be interesting to work on would be adding more character descriptions to this part. It may just be me, but by this point I’ve slightly forgotten what all the characters are supposed to look like, except for their relative heights (like Safi is shorter than Serafina, and Sally is shorter than Anna). I wouldn’t advise to put a whole physical description here again, but it might be nice to incorporate little things in the character gestures, like ‘X-character curled a lock of blonde hair behind their ear’ or something. Or since this is a scene where they’re doing some thinking work, maybe one of them can be really old fashioned and stick a pencil behind their ear, or spin a pen or stylus on their finger.

Plot

I really like the reveal at the beginning of this part! I guess the characters are used to stuff like that, since they didn’t react, but I definitely was like ‘woah’ when she brought up him being in a club that wasn’t supposed to exist yet.
Safi’s blush deepened. “I was trying to see if there was any way to figure out the sandstorm thing. Sorry. It seemed like such a convenient little puzzle and my brain couldn’t leave it alone.”

Hmm if Safi thinks the sandstorms are important, then I have reason to think they are too! I wonder if the guy perhaps time travelled while in the sandstorm? Or maybe one of the sandstorms has a pocket dimension that is a link between two different periods of time?

Overall

The plot reveals surrounding the murder case continue to interest me. I can imagine it’s hard to avoid stuff like typos and forgetting to describe certain things while being on Week 18 (?) of LMS or so, and I think you’re doing a great job keeping up with the challenge anyhow! Adding some more description might help with the word count (it certainly did for me when I did NaNo two years ago <.<) so it could still be a good idea to try out. Other than that, I think you’ve got some great ideas here and a pretty unique character dynamic working in your favour.

Hope this helps, and keep writing!
-Lim





My tongue must tell the anger of my heart, or else my heart, concealing it, will break...
— Katherine, The Taming of the Shrew