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LoaMR: Ch.IX: Change of Tracks 3

by MailicedeNamedy


The forest paths were cursed.

In the darkness, every branch and every owl could be a ghost. The moon was high in the sky. The wisps of mist kept the silver light from reaching the animals. Sporadically, a ray reached the ground.

Bumpy roads and muddy curves awaited the traveler in this place. The many stars in the firmament, the many clouds, the moon, and the tall fir trees revolved around the driver. So did the nearby mountains on the horizon. They all transformed the area into an image of the realm of the dead.

Only the wolf avoided its task of making the paths more uncertain that night. The black lake in the background reflected nothing at all. Careless hikers had already drowned in its depths. Lake monsters did not exist, carp swam there.

The largest clearing off the shore of the lake had been the centre of an old monastery hospital. Many centuries ago, the priest built an estate. The sick and the outcast found new faith in these halls.

It fell into disrepair after the Long War four hundred years ago, and from then on it was only known through legends and ghost stories.

The colossal windows brought the glow of the monstrous chandeliers to the forecourt. The flat, grass-covered ground once served as a cemetery. Today, a ruined monument in the shape of a cross reminds the owner of it. The entrance, hidden behind that stone pillar, had an ancient, indecipherable inscription. Neither historians nor archaeologists could speak of it. The gateway resembled a maw. The vestibule was the mouth, the side wings the eyes. For the patients, a gigantic skull, the image of their passing.

One was greeted by the cemetery, whose stench in ancient times, made even the lake retreat. Neither animal nor human wanted to claim this as their property.

The Melaten estate was one of those sad places that were unable to spread peace in the world. Forgotten in the memories of the population, the villa was the subject of many inventions by those parents who could not cope with their naughty children. They quickly found entry into the fairy-tale world of the surrounding settlements.

There was, however, something good about this estate. Few people who had ever visited it knew of its exorbitant size and kept quiet about it.

There was nothing to be found there. Only the panorama of the mountains, the black lake, the fir forest, were there. One could fall in love with it all when one woke up one morning in a cosy four-poster bed and wandered dreamily onto the balcony.

Léonard de Waarfay had taken up residence in this estate - the Melaten estate.

The dark atmosphere, the lake where he liked to bathe and the undetectability in this part of the Northern Tree Line, made it an ideal hiding place for any no-good.

His car had not had a break for hours. Léonard didn't want to. Unsuspecting of the further events in Kapellen Castle, he had taken it upon himself to make a stealthy getaway. Not very honourable, he had to admit.

He didn't need to soothe his conscience. He was halfway through and wanted nothing more to do with the others. It was a community of convenience, nothing more. The only person he needed was his fiancée. She and he were united by his task. It brought them both together.

"Everything has order. The land and the sea. This is how the will of the Goddess is done."

Léonard got out.

The car had stopped in front of the gate. He needed a cigarette before returning. It calmed him down. His fiancée was asleep, he thought, and would not see her until tomorrow.

He pulled a black casket out of his pocket and looked at it excitedly. Barely bigger than a fist, it looked like a heart, a throbbing pump that did not belong to him. A thin golden band, resembling tiny writing, adorned the casket, dividing it in half in the middle.

The bright lights of the chandeliers illuminated the square. The monument was Léonard's support in so many ways. He could barely read the inscription, weathered, and chipped was the cold stone.

Bones lay beneath him. The shadows of this former cemetery stretched all the way into the forest. The stump was crushed by his shoe as he creaked open the gate. Precisely because the Estate did not want to be found, there was no need to lock it.

Echoing, he stepped through the long, dark hallway. It immediately reminded him of Kapellen Castle. The empty walls, the dusty chandeliers, everything was dead. It had been a long time since anyone had cleaned and dusted. No one needed it either. A house big enough to house an entire town was the home of two individuals.

Sounds of the mandolin warmed his heart. A poetic melody awaited him.

The misshapen collection of books kept all light from outside. It, donated by the candles and the fire, turned the shadow of the lonely woman into a tangled giant, which tampered with the many old documents and volumes. The imposing windows were closed by the even more imposing moth-eaten curtains. The view cleared the next morning. It led to the black lake.

She was not aware that she was being watched.

From the gallery, he saw the entire library. It had been a cruelly long time since he last touched this carpet. These chairs. These tables. Everything was as he had seen it long ago. His memory had not betrayed him.

He continued to listen to the mandolin.

Monique de Waarfay, younger than Léonard, was slightly shorter than him. The short, shiny, pastel-brown hair undoubtedly didn't suit every woman, but on her it definitely did. The round, childlike face, the rosy cheeks, the small nose, the dull eyes, and the strange beige-bleached colour remained the same all her life. The exquisite Titian red dress had been tailored for her.

In the longing of the melody, she found the harmony to bridge her seclusion. The echo brought a certain resonance to his ears. He did not want to disturb her.

He wanted to be able to immortalise the image forever. Never again did he wish to be separated from her. The need to become one with her, the urge to hold her, made him do nothing but watch her.

He almost shed a tear seeing her there and remembering what they had experienced. He could not stop this graceful moment.

The wonderful music went up a notch. The tension grew constantly until the water broke through the rock and produced a waterfall.

Her music stand´s best days were long behind it. The yellow sheets were ancient. Whoever of the former visitors had forgotten them must have taken exceptionally good care of them.

It was the sound of the time-honoured grandfather´s clock in the hall striking three in the morning. The music ended. The rustling of sheet music brought Léonard back to everyday life.

"Can you see anything at all in this dim light?" he asked from the gallery.

Startled, she recoiled. Unsuspecting of his presence, the instrument slipped from her hand and fell to the floor. The gloomy eyes floated to the echo, then quickly to the speaker.

"Léonard!"

Tearful, she jumped over the carpet, hurried across the cold wooden floor, and hurried up the gnarled stairs. Dancing, she landed in his arms. Both pressed and kissed each other.

"Eternity has kept me alive. I'm so glad you're back."

Sobbing, her head remained on his shoulder. She didn't want to let go of him for the rest of her life. It was his warmth that surrounded her, that she had needed all those nights.

"It took a long time. I have it."

The strange casket was lying on the floor. He had to drop it. His fiancée was more important to him. There was nothing he loved more in his life.

"Léonard. It's so beautiful. These words. Your voice... I am speechless..."

The wet tears ran down his back. He could feel the coldness in her isolation. He would never have thought it. This is how far he has come.

***

"I don't know what we could talk about," Monique spoke, "It's enough to be together to know everything."

Her eyes had developed an eerie red. He recognised himself in them. Half past five. The sky was pitch black. The curtains remained drawn. Only the fire flickered.

He had now spent the time talking about everything he had been doing for the last few months. From beginning to end he talked about his journey, Petrichor, Emma, Sehlingen, Mönchsberg Abbey, Regenschloss, Weymouth, the Victoria Luise Orphanage, Kapellengarten...

"All those telegrams. They had the touch of you, but it wasn't you," she lamented, "Now it's all over. You've done it. It... I still can't say anything..."

She had lost as many tears that night as she had then as she heard about the death of Julius´ sister, she recalled.

"You don't have to say anything. Everything is in order..."

"...so happens the will of the Goddess,” she completed the sentence, "I know, Léonard, I know..."

He looked at her caressingly. Her childlike appearance constantly reminded him of dying. Nothing negative for him. It just reminded him of it.

"How did it go with you? You weren't here all the time, were you?"

She shook her head.

"No. I was temporarily travelling around. “

She began to tell all the things she had experienced. Even among people, she had been lonely. No matter how few she let herself get close to, the warmth that Léonard radiated to her was incomparable.

The more she spoke, the more it seemed to her as if they had been in the library since steadiness. It was like the old days. Sitting for hours and talking to each other. About the Goddess. About the world. About anything that could come to their minds. In a way, they were the freest people in the world. They could do whatever they wanted. This boundless freedom was an almost perfect life.

After she finished, he could breathe a sigh of relief.

His pompous appearance in the world was a mask he wore. His true self was a quiet, positive being. Only with his fiancée was he a human being. Alone, a puny nothing.

He would have wanted to see her sit there forever, grow old, but he couldn't do it. With an apology, he explained why he had been absent for two years.

"Let's go to sleep," Monique suggested, "You need rest. Peace and quiet."

"I'm not going to sleep. I don't have time for it. Now I realise the mistake I made. I should have protected them. They should have come with me. “

She stood in front of him and kissed his forehead.

"You are stupid because you rarely think about the others. Sooner or later, they'll be at the door."

Léonard smiled sheepishly.

"I didn't take particularly good care of them when things got serious. They don't forgive me. I didn't intend to see them again."

"You have changed. You worry about others. It's been a long time since you last did that. Not even when Kamilla died..."

"Enough," Léonard interrupted his fiancée.

He raised his hands in the air. The three inconspicuous rings were never missing from his fingers, "If I had become someone else, I would no longer exist."

She smiled at him as he sat there in the chair. The tiredness showed on his face. Stroking him, she woke him up when he had dozed off for a moment.

Tears of joy and an enchanting smile came over her when she saw him standing in front of her. Just like him, she wanted to hold him, maybe even hurt him, just to nurse and care for him forever. There were only the two of them in her life.

With a respectful look, she lifted the black casket in the air. She whispered a prayer to it but she did not intend to praise it. The casket was the calamity, the burden that Léonard and Monique had to bear. Two of them were theirs. The long wait had been worth it. His game with Mönchsberg Abbey was bearing fruit.

There was new hope for Monique.

END OF CHAPTER IX

To Chapter X


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Sat Oct 30, 2021 5:59 pm
HarryHardy wrote a review...



Good Morning/Afternoon/Evening/Night(whichever one it is in your part of the world),

Hi! I'm here to leave a quick review!!

First Impression: Okayy...so we get to see a somewhat different side of Léonard and while I still don't like him very much, this relationship here seems to be a pretty genuine one and a rather beautiful one to watch at that. :D

Anyway let's get right to it,

The forest paths were cursed.

In the darkness, every branch and every owl could be a ghost. The moon was high in the sky. The wisps of mist kept the silver light from reaching the animals. Sporadically, a ray reached the ground.

Bumpy roads and muddy curves awaited the traveler in this place. The many stars in the firmament, the many clouds, the moon, and the tall fir trees revolved around the driver. So did the nearby mountains on the horizon. They all transformed the area into an image of the realm of the dead.

Only the wolf avoided its task of making the paths more uncertain that night. The black lake in the background reflected nothing at all. Careless hikers had already drowned in its depths. Lake monsters did not exist, carp swam there.


Okayy...well, we're starting off with a somewhat spooky sounding description there, that's an interesting move here. So far we haven't seen much of anything like that, well besides maybe that burial ground earlier. BUt hmm, this seems to be leaning heavily towards this being a bit of a darker more scary place.

The largest clearing off the shore of the lake had been the centre of an old monastery hospital. Many centuries ago, the priest built an estate. The sick and the outcast found new faith in these halls.

It fell into disrepair after the Long War four hundred years ago, and from then on it was only known through legends and ghost stories.

The colossal windows brought the glow of the monstrous chandeliers to the forecourt. The flat, grass-covered ground once served as a cemetery. Today, a ruined monument in the shape of a cross reminds the owner of it. The entrance, hidden behind that stone pillar, had an ancient, indecipherable inscription. Neither historians nor archaeologists could speak of it. The gateway resembled a maw. The vestibule was the mouth, the side wings the eyes. For the patients, a gigantic skull, the image of their passing.

One was greeted by the cemetery, whose stench in ancient times, made even the lake retreat. Neither animal nor human wanted to claim this as their property.


I have to say this description is stretching out a bit longer than I would've liked here. There is a point at which you've gotta try and get the characters at least mentioned before diving into so much detail with the description. Otherwise sometimes these long winded stretches, while they do help set the mood can come off as a bit boring. Otherwise though, in general we're getting a very negative sense of what kind of place this and it's setting an interesting tone for this chapter here.

There was nothing to be found there. Only the panorama of the mountains, the black lake, the fir forest, were there. One could fall in love with it all when one woke up one morning in a cosy four-poster bed and wandered dreamily onto the balcony.

Léonard de Waarfay had taken up residence in this estate - the Melaten estate.

The dark atmosphere, the lake where he liked to bathe and the undetectability in this part of the Northern Tree Line, made it an ideal hiding place for any no-good.

His car had not had a break for hours. Léonard didn't want to. Unsuspecting of the further events in Kapellen Castle, he had taken it upon himself to make a stealthy getaway. Not very honourable, he had to admit.

He didn't need to soothe his conscience. He was halfway through and wanted nothing more to do with the others. It was a community of convenience, nothing more. The only person he needed was his fiancée. She and he were united by his task. It brought them both together.


Ahh, well it looks like finally our man has arrived. And considering the kind of situation he has involved himself in here and the kind of person that he generally tends to be, I have to say this is an oddly fitting place for him to live at. He certainly fits in well with the local atmosphere.

He pulled a black casket out of his pocket and looked at it excitedly. Barely bigger than a fist, it looked like a heart, a throbbing pump that did not belong to him. A thin golden band, resembling tiny writing, adorned the casket, dividing it in half in the middle.

The bright lights of the chandeliers illuminated the square. The monument was Léonard's support in so many ways. He could barely read the inscription, weathered, and chipped was the cold stone.

Bones lay beneath him. The shadows of this former cemetery stretched all the way into the forest. The stump was crushed by his shoe as he creaked open the gate. Precisely because the Estate did not want to be found, there was no need to lock it.


Alright, well that looks important somehow. He's coming back home to maybe the one person he somewhat cares about and he's got something that he clearly seems to treasure with him. This could be a very important moment for us to learn a bit more about his motivation perhaps for the sort of horrible things that he does.

Echoing, he stepped through the long, dark hallway. It immediately reminded him of Kapellen Castle. The empty walls, the dusty chandeliers, everything was dead. It had been a long time since anyone had cleaned and dusted. No one needed it either. A house big enough to house an entire town was the home of two individuals.

Sounds of the mandolin warmed his heart. A poetic melody awaited him.

The misshapen collection of books kept all light from outside. It, donated by the candles and the fire, turned the shadow of the lonely woman into a tangled giant, which tampered with the many old documents and volumes. The imposing windows were closed by the even more imposing moth-eaten curtains. The view cleared the next morning. It led to the black lake.

She was not aware that she was being watched.


Okay...that is somewhat creeper but I suppose its also in a way sweet. With Léonard my mind just always jumps to the worst possible conclusion so you'll have to excuse them for thinking that. But hmm, well, this is certainly some more fun description and a bit of reminiscing to put a few things in perspective here.

Monique de Waarfay, younger than Léonard, was slightly shorter than him. The short, shiny, pastel-brown hair undoubtedly didn't suit every woman, but on her it definitely did. The round, childlike face, the rosy cheeks, the small nose, the dull eyes, and the strange beige-bleached colour remained the same all her life. The exquisite Titian red dress had been tailored for her.

In the longing of the melody, she found the harmony to bridge her seclusion. The echo brought a certain resonance to his ears. He did not want to disturb her.

He wanted to be able to immortalise the image forever. Never again did he wish to be separated from her. The need to become one with her, the urge to hold her, made him do nothing but watch her.


Hmm, well, I suppose maybe that is actually the one person he cares about. Since these are his inner thoughts, they must be honest, unless he's someone who lies to themselves even in their thoughts which is a new level of secrecy entirely.

Her music stand´s best days were long behind it. The yellow sheets were ancient. Whoever of the former visitors had forgotten them must have taken exceptionally good care of them.

It was the sound of the time-honoured grandfather´s clock in the hall striking three in the morning. The music ended. The rustling of sheet music brought Léonard back to everyday life.

"Can you see anything at all in this dim light?" he asked from the gallery.

Startled, she recoiled. Unsuspecting of his presence, the instrument slipped from her hand and fell to the floor. The gloomy eyes floated to the echo, then quickly to the speaker.

"Léonard!"


Uhh...probably not a great way to greet someone in what is clearly night time when they are also very much alone and almost certainly not expecting anyone to show up...but well, it's a nice opening line there in the conversation. It shows that they know each other.

The strange casket was lying on the floor. He had to drop it. His fiancée was more important to him. There was nothing he loved more in his life.

"Léonard. It's so beautiful. These words. Your voice... I am speechless..."

The wet tears ran down his back. He could feel the coldness in her isolation. He would never have thought it. This is how far he has come.


Hmm...well I guess these two do seem to care for one another quite a bit there. I don't really like Léonard at all, and the kind of habits he's cultivated, but well, its a beautiful moment there for two people and I can't help but like said moment. :D

"I don't know what we could talk about," Monique spoke, "It's enough to be together to know everything."

Her eyes had developed an eerie red. He recognised himself in them. Half past five. The sky was pitch black. The curtains remained drawn. Only the fire flickered.

He had now spent the time talking about everything he had been doing for the last few months. From beginning to end he talked about his journey, Petrichor, Emma, Sehlingen, Mönchsberg Abbey, Regenschloss, Weymouth, the Victoria Luise Orphanage, Kapellengarten...

"All those telegrams. They had the touch of you, but it wasn't you," she lamented, "Now it's all over. You've done it. It... I still can't say anything..."


Well he's narrating all of his terrible deeds and it looks like whatever context it happens to be in for her, she thinks its something good...of course we can't judge anything at all just yet cause we know pretty much nothing here about said context.

He looked at her caressingly. Her childlike appearance constantly reminded him of dying. Nothing negative for him. It just reminded him of it.

"How did it go with you? You weren't here all the time, were you?"

She shook her head.

"No. I was temporarily travelling around. “


Well them sort of updating each other on their lives like this and trying to absorb each other's worries is a bit of a sweet moment there. I'm looking at this through the slightly tainted lens of my dislike for Léonard but as someone who adores a good bit of romance, I definitely love it.

She began to tell all the things she had experienced. Even among people, she had been lonely. No matter how few she let herself get close to, the warmth that Léonard radiated to her was incomparable.

The more she spoke, the more it seemed to her as if they had been in the library since steadiness. It was like the old days. Sitting for hours and talking to each other. About the Goddess. About the world. About anything that could come to their minds. In a way, they were the freest people in the world. They could do whatever they wanted. This boundless freedom was an almost perfect life.

After she finished, he could breathe a sigh of relief.


Okayy....well I guess this is just continuing in that vein somewhat with them just kind of debriefing each other from their respective missions that they've sort of been on. It's getting a tiny bit boring once again once the initial wholesome interactions wore off, but I have hope things will soon be more interesting.

His pompous appearance in the world was a mask he wore. His true self was a quiet, positive being. Only with his fiancée was he a human being. Alone, a puny nothing.

He would have wanted to see her sit there forever, grow old, but he couldn't do it. With an apology, he explained why he had been absent for two years.

"Let's go to sleep," Monique suggested, "You need rest. Peace and quiet."

"I'm not going to sleep. I don't have time for it. Now I realise the mistake I made. I should have protected them. They should have come with me. “

She stood in front of him and kissed his forehead.


OKayy...well maybe you're trying to set up some actual redemption for Léonard or show that he's not the horrible person he appears to be. I'd suggest treading carefully here. Right now, this almost seems like an attempt at a somewhat clean slate where everything he ever did is perfectly justified and "wasn't him". Its a bit extreme to assume you'd continue this way, I know you create more complex characters than that, but this is slipping towards one of those scenarios where his actions might get written off a bit too easily soo be careful where this goes.

He raised his hands in the air. The three inconspicuous rings were never missing from his fingers, "If I had become someone else, I would no longer exist."

She smiled at him as he sat there in the chair. The tiredness showed on his face. Stroking him, she woke him up when he had dozed off for a moment.

Tears of joy and an enchanting smile came over her when she saw him standing in front of her. Just like him, she wanted to hold him, maybe even hurt him, just to nurse and care for him forever. There were only the two of them in her life.

With a respectful look, she lifted the black casket in the air. She whispered a prayer to it but she did not intend to praise it. The casket was the calamity, the burden that Léonard and Monique had to bear. Two of them were theirs. The long wait had been worth it. His game with Mönchsberg Abbey was bearing fruit.

There was new hope for Monique.


OKayy...well, cryptic for sure, but there are plenty of little bits of information to be decoded in this paragraph and overall, I think I like the end that this chapter comes to here. Its an interesting bit of a lull in the adventurous arc that Léonard's character has been on and this feels like a bit of a rest and a regroup before I'm sure more chaos will soon ensue.

Aaaaand that's it for this one.

Overall: Overall, I think this is a relatively solid part and overall definitely a pretty solid chapter. It was one of the quieter ones coming after a very action packed chapter eight and I think it gave the plot a good break. I hope things kick on after this though, cause you don't want too many resting chapters, but I think overall, this was good. :D

As always remember to take what you think was helpful and forget the rest.

Stay Safe
Harry




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Sat Oct 09, 2021 5:38 pm
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RandomTalks wrote a review...



Hey Mailice!

RandomTalks here with a short review!

Finally, we meet Monique!

I will have to say, after reading through Chapters 1 to 9 and seeing Leonard discard people left and right after he had finished his use of them, I did not really expect to see this side of him. When we first learned about Monique, I had guessed that he must have a heart and be capable of living if he promised the rest of his life to someone else. But even then, I had not really anticipated seeing this more humane side to him, I had not thought how it would be to actually see him care for someone other than himself. I have to say I quite like this side of his character. It opens up an entire chest of vulnerabilities he had not allowed his readers to see before and it makes his character more real and human.

Monique seems to really care for him. It also seems that she is quite young and a little childlike herself. I think here it would be really appropriate if you include some of their history together, or at least what attracted them to each other, especially Leonard's side as he is not one who cares for someone easily. It would help us understand their relationship and gives us a better idea of their being a couple. I noticed how you repeated the fact that 'their experience' brought them together and I was wondering if it has some other significance as well. Maybe that is why Leonard feels that she is the only person he can really be himself with - because he does not have to pretend or hide anything from her as she already knows it all?

Monique seems to be in deep with Leonard's mysteries. She is well aware of his secrets, at least I think she is, and, she knows what is going on even though she was not a part of his adventures. It gave me a feeling that this journey Leonard has been on, was both of theirs, and I am not sure what her side of it is.

This casket that both of them are so fascinated with - something tells me that this is what Leonard had stolen from the castle during the ball. I think that there is a lot of history there that we do not know yet. Otherwise he would not have gone to so much trouble for it and would definitely not have faced gun shots for it (as Claire observed). Other people must also have been after it, and it makes me wonder. What is the story behind it? Why is it so important? And most importantly, what does it mean to Leonard? I don't think a casket has been mentioned in the story before this, so I am going to assume that we will learn more about this in the future chapters? Leonard and Monique consider that the journey is over now that they have the casket, but is it really?

Some details:

he talked about his journey, Petrichor, Emma, Sehlingen, Mönchsberg Abbey, Regenschloss, Weymouth, the Victoria Luise Orphanage, Kapellengarten...

I thought it was a little strange that he did not mention Claire, or maybe he clubs the girls together in the same category because they all mean the same to him? Still, no matter how small it was, it was good to see a little guilt in him.

Not even when Kamilla died..."

"Enough," Léonard interrupted his fiancée.

This seems to be a sore spot for Leonard and I know that this has been mentioned a lot of times before. Makes me wonder what the real story is. Thinking about it now, I just realized there are still many spots to be explored in the story. It is not yet near the end, like this chapter made me initially feel.

The three inconspicuous rings were never missing from his fingers, "If I had become someone else, I would no longer exist."

I wondered about the significance of the rings, have we heard of them before? Also, I really liked this dialogue and thought it was very fitting for Leonard.

Lastly i forgot to mention that the descriptions in the beginning were really good. It initially painted a very somber picture for this chapter, but when I realized it is a place Leonard considers home, I felt the large monstrous and incredibly lonely house bear a strange and new resemblance to Leonard who has a similar large personality and loneliness to him. I also noticed you mentioned that he had memorized the look of the library, which made me wonder how long they had been on run and hidden from the world in that house.

Overall, this was a really interesting chapter that gave us an entire new insight into Leonard's character, revealing aspects of him that we had never seen before. We have seen him plan, plot, lie, cheat and pretend. But we had never seen him love and care until now, and it seems he is more than capable of it. We have arrived at a stage where we cannot really guess what is going to happen next, so I am really interested to see where you take the story now.

Keep writing and have a great day!

Until next time!






I don't think a casket has been mentioned in the story before this, so I am going to assume that we will learn more about this in the future chapters?

No, they have not been mentioned directly yet. But that is why the background information in chapter 5 is necessary. Of course, that only makes sense much later.
I wondered about the significance of the rings, have we heard of them before? Also, I really liked this dialogue and thought it was very fitting for Leonard.

They were only mentioned once during his introduction, but the three rings stand for three people who are very close to him, one of them is Monique. The other two have already been mentioned a few times in the course of the last chapters.

Thanks again for your review! :D



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Sat Oct 09, 2021 12:47 pm
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ForeverYoung299 wrote a review...



Hey! Forever here with a review!!

This part was a romantic part but still it manages to have the continuous mysterious feeling throughout the chapter, especially at the end. I like the relationship between Leonard and Monique. They both seem to love each other from the inner core of their hearts. From what I could infer, there might be a mutual factor that led to their love but it's still a mystery to the readers.

I just wonder if you can mention Leonard somewhere in the beginning of this part. If you do so, it wouls be a bit easier for the readers to know whose POV they are seeing from and who they are dealing with. Like, I thought we were reading from either Claire or Emma's POV until you mentioned some facts related to Leonard and then finally Leonard's name.

The casket seems to be a very interesting thing and I wonder how they are really fulfilling Goddess's wish and what the Goddess's wish really was. And most importantly, how Leonard got that casket. If I am not much mistaken, the abbey gave it to him in exchange of the book of the deads. Now again I am a bit confused about why the casket is their calamity and burden. Like how can be something which they wanted be a burden?

As for the characters, we saw a good change from the side of Leonard. Though you did tell us of Monique, I never thought him to be like this. However, I quite liked this change in him. We get to see a true nature of him and he is kind of being himself in front of Monique unlike in front of other people when he always wears a facade. Monique seems to be the only person in front of whom, he can completely open up and hide nothing. Monique too seems to care for him a lot just as he does. We still don't know very much from which I can completely understand a person but she seems to be a good person.

I wonder if he will actually meet Claire and Emma by any means. I liked the fact how you showed that it's winter by telling us the surroundings and the time. It should be sometime around 22nd January if we go with Claire and Emma's time(I guess you mentioned that it was 3 weeks since new year). I would just suggest to add Claire where Leonard recapitulated about his journey. I guess she was important too.

Overall, the chapter was quite good and I was just wondering how many chapters the story has in total. In this chapter, we saw from five or more perspectives. I don't know if you are actually planning to merge all the parts of a chapter or not, but if you merge, that can be a problem to see from so many perspectives in a single chapter.

Keep Writing!!

~Forever






Thank you for your review! :D




To have more, you have to become more. Don't wish it was easier - wish you were better. For things to change, you have to change, and for things to get better, you have to get better.
— Jim Rohn