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16+ Language Violence

The Forsaken Race - The Hidden Truth: Chapter 1

by RavenAkuma


Warning: This work has been rated 16+ for language and violence.

                                 

"Welcome to "The Forsaken Race"! This is an anime-stylized high fantasy story, set in a chaotic original world. We'll explore some fantastical themes, but an equal amount of dark themes. Younger and sensitive readers, beware, some of these profane and violent moments may not be palatable to you...

However, if you have the audacity, you may follow the lone Aubade Sylph, Kita, in the long and hard journey that awaits. I do hope you enjoy..."   
~ Raven Akuma

                               

Chapter 1 - A Fast Descent

            

          

(Present day...)

                 

Every speck. Every crack. Every chip in the white paint.

Kita Rein had the roof of her bedroom memorized better than her own reflection.

She was stuck; she was paralyzed, and worse yet, completely numb. She could barely feel her own breaths. The air coming in and out was so faint and light that it passed her airways like a ghost.

She strained to find details in her peripheral vision. Against her ruffled midnight-blue sheets, the sylph's sickly skin stood out quite jarringly. Not the ashen-white hue that was common among her people, but rough, highlighting every vein, and yellow-tinted like old ivory. Beads of cold sweat gathered along her brow, and goosebumps covered her limbs. Her dark violet hair, which fell just a bit below her shoulders, was matted and strewn all about. Her humble dark gray nightdress was helplessly wrinkled.

She felt the signals to move, the urge to do something -anything, yet couldn't. Like a washed-up corpse with a spirit trapped inside. No sensation whatsoever; no touch, no scent, no taste. She couldn't even shift her eyes. In these moments, she was at the mercy of the world.

Worse yet, at the mercy of her own mind.

It was the point in the night where the longer she studied that hauntingly familiar image, the more it began to change. Glimmers of pure black manifested between the specks. Flickering shadows seeped from the cracks. They grew, they gathered, and they continued to darken.

Without warning, without will, a black cloud had formed and spiraled above her. There was nothing distinct within, only shifting shadows and blurry silhouettes. Dark stars, like punctures in reality itself, would appear only to teleport elsewhere the moment she tried to focus on them. The more she tried to ignore the havoc above her, the more she could see it trying to reach her.

However, Kita didn't care anymore. There were plenty of feelings in the whirlwind of emotions that this cloud brought, and sometimes fear would creep inside, but this was not a recent issue. For six long months, she had been staring into this void. It mostly happened when she lay down in a futile attempt to rest. After those long nights, where she would be lucky to reach just two hours of sleep, she would spend the rest of her day feeling this corporeal, inky sickness following her, as if glued to her back. Insomnia, more than anything, was the most crippling side of it. That in itself amplified what should've been just a nagging, bad feeling. Even when she felt like her eyelids were weighed down by bricks, she couldn't find sleep.

Worse yet, as Kita struggled to ignore the darkness, she reached the point of not just seeing it, but hearing it. It manifested as the faintest whisper that was so close, she sometimes wondered if she was speaking under her breath.

Tonight, she could hear, "'Why do you treat yourself this way?'"

Kita ignored the voice. Breaking through her physical numbness, she managed to bite her tongue.

"'You are in pain, yet you do nothing.'"

Again, Kita struggled to ignore it.

"'Do you no longer care?'"

That time, Kita whispered as quietly as possible, "I didn't care in the first place."

"'Do you not believe that it could be better? That you could do better?'"

"I tried, and I failed," Kita murmured.

"'Not only do you feel displaced, but you blame yourself.'"

"I've said this before," Kita spoke into nothingness. "I've turned everything about my life around. I've committed to everything, yet I'm still failing. That tells me I'm the problem."

"'Who is to say that just because you were in the wrong place before, that this is the right place?'"

Kita paused for a moment. For some odd reason, that line was repeating like an echo, endlessly within the walls of her mind.

"Then what is the right place?" She mumbled.

"'Something may be wrong with you, that is clear, but something must be wrong around you as well. Will you even try to find the reason?'"

Kita sighed, "I tried. It doesn't work. Nothing works. It's useless..."

"Foolish thoughts of a foolish mind."

"I said..." Kita inhaled deeply then snapped, "It's useless!"

Suddenly, Kita felt a weight land on her chest.

Snapping entirely from her trance, she lurched up in a panic. As a result, she accidentally threw the small dog that had landed on her forward. He simply shook himself off, clearly unphased, but still looked annoyed.

Kita looked around with staggered breaths, dazed and disoriented, but everything had faded. All she saw was this wretched bedroom -a sanctuary that somehow felt like a prison at the same time. The covers were barely hanging over her now, twisted from her rolling and thrashing. The walls had royal blue wallpaper, a shade brighter than her bedsheets. The floors were dark wood, partially covered by a round white rug. A small bathroom was across from her, and a descending staircase led to the downstairs portion of her small house. A half-open window was on the wall to her left, by the foot of her bed.

Kita could see the night sky through the lace curtains. The moon was illuminating her small village, Lion's Bridge. It was a quaint town, closer to the center of Sybilius, and the cobblestone roads were empty at this hour.

Though afraid to check, Kita picked up the silver clock on her nightstand. It was still two o'clock in the morning.

Kita sighed heavily, "Not even two-thirty. When did I lie down? Around midnight?"

She noticed her dog's ear twitch. The simple pet was a little smaller than a cat, with dark eyes and very long fur that nearly obscured his legs and face. Every time Kita feared he was slowing down because he was old, she remembered he had always been lazy.

"Sorry, Stud," Kita mumbled, recalling that she threw him.

As she sat there in total silence, she began thinking about what she had just gone through. However, it was easier said than done. Her subconscious conversations never made sense when she was brought back to reality. They only made her feel annoyed and resentful, as if she was doing something wrong.

Instead of lingering on it, Kita tried to clear her mind. As she finally stood up, she felt as if a pound of nails suddenly crashed onto her head, and every muscle was begging for her to stop moving. Waking up had to be miserable for everyone, but for her, the feeling didn't go away.

As Stud circled about her feet, Kita said emptily, "I feel like I should talk to Yuna again. But regardless of who's doing it, I don't want to be treated like I'm unstable. I get enough nonsense without making myself sound crazy."

Thinking about that made her feel more bitter. In her experience, she knew dragging others into this would only get the word out, and the whole town would then be suspicious of her. It happened repeatedly, everywhere she had been in her life, and she was already on thin ice in this one.

She thought to herself, I guess talking wouldn't make a difference. Whatever they drum up, everyone already thinks worse. Even my own father-

Kita gasped, cutting her thought there. She stumbled her way to the bathroom, distracting herself with her routine. There was an oil lamp nearby, but she didn't bother retrieving it. She preferred darkness, since too much light hurt her eyes.

However, as she turned to the mirror, she started to notice something strange.

The pane was rippling like water, and her reflection was pitch black. It was almost like she was casting a shadow, but that should've been impossible without any light on her. Kita lurched back, rubbing her eyes viciously, but it wouldn't go away.

"What's wrong with the mirror?" She murmured.

Though hesitant, she had to be sure it was real. She slowly reached toward the pane. The shadow did the same, although its movements were stiff and twitchy.

Just as Kita tapped the glass, the room in the mirror turned into a black and red haze, and crimson fluid began to gush out of the sides. The shadow's hand lurched back. Kita gasped, but couldn't find the strength to move. The shadow continued to twitch erratically, looking down as it crossed its arms in a corpse-like position. Despite its pitch appearance, she could see more blood leaking from the eyes and mouth. Now the mirror was like a window looking into a hellish dimension.

"Wh-What are you doing in my house?" Kita stammered.

Suddenly, the shadow sprouted horns and massive claws, then reached through the glass and grabbed her wrist.

Kita screamed, struggling desperately in its cold grip.

As soon as she sank her nails into the hand, however, everything stopped. The shadow vanished, the bathroom looked normal, and the mirror was just that; a normal mirror. When Kita looked down, she was grabbing her own wrist, and there were scratches from the struggle. They weren't even caused by claws, they were caused by her now-bloody nails.

Still alarmed, Kita turned on the oil lamp, practically blinding herself. Nothing else happened, though. She was just left with her fluttering heart, her aching head, and her bloodied hands.

Kita sighed heavily, "What's wrong with me?"

'Arf!'

Kita flinched and looked down. Her small dog was waiting just outside the bathroom, clearly confused.

She thought to herself, Right. You know lingering won't help. Ignore them, just try to focus. It's all you can do.

Trying to move on, she retrieved some bandages from the cabinets. Once she got the scratches to stop bleeding, she patched the worst of them. There were other injuries like this, most of them caused by mistakes, clumsiness, or even episodes like the one she just had. Those closest to her would ask questions, but she always ignored them and didn't give a clear answer.

Pushing on, she picked a brush off the wooden counter to make her hair less chaotic. All while she stared unhappily at her strange appearance, bringing a deep-seated sense of anger and unease with it.

Under the scrawny frame, exhausted eyes, and unhealthy complexion, Kita looked normal for an Aubade Sylph. Not very pretty or charming, in her experience, but she didn't pay attention to such things. There was just one consistent trait that set her apart from the others. Something so strange, it would even put her on edge, especially when she stared back at it in the reflection.

It was her eyes. Instead of brown, blue, or any normal color, they were a bright, vibrant shade of purple. Others would mock her for it, or even fear her.

"It can't just be because of my eyes that they don't like me," Kita spoke under her breath. "What is wrong with me? Can I even fix it?"

No matter how she looked at herself, she just couldn't point to one thing. Everything was wrong, and she just couldn't believe otherwise.

Frustrated, Kita switched off the lamp, then headed down the wooden stairs. Each step would emit small creaks or cracks. The faint pitter-patter of Stud's paws came from behind her. At the bottom of the curved stairs, there were only two rooms off the main hallway, which had old white walls and dark, weathered wood flooring.

Although now, Kita was frozen at the bottom of the stairs. She felt like she had just snapped out of another trance, as she barely remembered leaving the bathroom.

"What am I doing?" The sylph murmured.

The only response was a high-pitched bark from her small dog.

Kita blinked hard. "Sorry, Stud, I wasn't talking to you."

Kita entered the living area, which consisted of more white walls and dark wood floors, an old brick fireplace, and two black chairs. The kitchen was tucked away in the back-left corner, with a wooden countertop and matching cabinets. Everything in there seemed untouched, because it usually was. Kita barely ate, and what she did eat was just scraps.

Slowly, she sulked toward the fireplace, where she fumbled for a matchbox on the mantle. She lit a match and threw it into the fireplace. While the flames started to grow along the logs, Kita took a seat just in front of it, watching the red-orange haze with a distant look. Stud hopped onto one of the chairs, lying down again.

Fire was the only thing that could soothe Kita during times like this. Its soothing warmth and dim light worked wonders on her rattled nerves, and something about how the flames danced along the logs would put her in a relaxing trance.

Stud sat next to her, prompting Kita to speak in her weary voice, "I just need to admit it. My life is out of control. My days are unproductive, and my nights are just hell."

Stud whined, lowering his head.

"It's true, though," Kita murmured. "I've lost so much, already. I've lost my job and all my money. I can barely walk without becoming disoriented. I always have a horrible feeling, and I can't make it go away no matter what I do. It feels like I'm always smiling and laughing for my friends, and it used to be genuine. Now it's all fake. I'm..."

Kita clenched her fists, and her teeth were gritting.

"I'm sick," she spat disdainfully. "I'm sick, and I can't get help. I've seen three doctors, including that 'famous' one in the city. I only agreed because of the ridiculous amount of money Yuna put in. I couldn't tell her that all she paid for was judgmental looks, name-calling, and pills that made me vomit."

As she continued to stare into the flames, she struggled not to tear up. With some time, though, the warm glow brought her anger back down, and she started to feel calm again.

"They all look at me with hate," Kita muttered. "But I can't help any of this. Not whatever they see in me, or whatever is making me feel this way..." She sighed, "I know I just have to press on and keep up the act. I'll figure it out. Somehow."

That being said, she tried to relax as she watched the flames. However, at the back of Kita's mind, some very dark thoughts were looming over her.


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Mon Apr 08, 2024 5:03 pm
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Moonlily wrote a review...



Hello Hello, I hope you dont mind that I am back with a second review. I figured since I did the Prologue I should give the first chapter a try. Overall it is a very strong and eventful first chapter that does well to set a tone. However, if you don't mind I have a few things I would change or alter a little bit along with an alternate version of the opening to help cut down on the telling side of things. I have to stress that you in no way have to use it at all.

I will start with the small changes first as they are only rearranging words or adding some elements. Again these do not have to be used nor I am a professional writer this is merely stuff that stuck out to me.

"The air coming in and out was so faint and light that it passed her airways like a ghost." Although this is a great use of imagery I would simply change it to " The air coming in and out was so faint and light that it passed through her airways like a ghost."

For this second it is also a very quick almost unnoticeable change but it does make a difference. " highlighting every vein, and yellow-tinted like old ivory." I would rewrite it a bit to help smooth it over. " highlighting every yellow-tinted vein as if made from old ivory"

I will admit this one is a little nit-picky but I feel you could use body language instead of telling us. " Though afraid to check, Kita picked up the silver clock on her nightstand." For this, I would try to describe a movement that evokes fear something like this." Though her hands shook in protest, Kita picked up the silver clock on her nightstand."

Lastly, this one is very small but I thought I would still bring it up just in case. "Its soothing warmth and dim light worked wonders on her rattled nerves," Instead of soothing since you brought it up before I would recommend changing it slightly ." Its tender warmth and dim light worked wonders on her rattled nerves. "

Now on to the big change, when she's talking to herself in bed I feel that you loop her being dismissed and mocked into it without having to tell the reader. perhaps by having bits of dialogue that are memories proving the point she doesn't want to admit. By layering in between the main conversation it can make the reader feel just as overwhelmed as she is and builds a sense of tension.

However, that would be all the main points I wanted to cover I do want to say I also have a very similar moment in my book that takes place near the end of chapter one. Also having shadows and voices except mine is of course not the same still found it funny.

keep writing, stay safe and drink water.




RavenAkuma says...


Welcome back! I love the suggestions -I'm amazed by your attention to detail! Also, your book already sounds interesting, I'll have to check it out sometime. Again, thanks for taking the time to read and review! :)

( %u2606 %u2606 %u2606 also, congratulations on your new review star! %u2606 %u2606 %u2606}



RavenAkuma says...


*whelp, those were supposed to be star emoticons but I guess they converted to gibberish XD



Moonlily says...


Lol Are you on mobile by any chance? and thanks so much for the kind words I am glad you found it helpful. I always try to give feedback I would want to get myself! Also, the first chapter of my book should be out this week or the next so there's time to catch up lol.



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Tue Mar 05, 2024 8:10 pm
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Kaia wrote a review...



Greetings! It's been a while since I've reviewed, but your piece caught my attention. So here I am.

Let's get right in:

The opening lines had some excellent description. Phrases such as

The air coming in and out was so faint and light that it passed her airways like a ghost
really brought together excellent description and mysterious, dark vibes which instantly caught my attention.

The scene occurs largely in Kitas mind. I imply that she lives alone with her little dog...but something suggests to me that she is forced to be there-that she does not want to be locked in this house. I'm almost guessing some sort of dark spell or something.

And there's another mystery presented here. This voice. I suppose that it could be as little as her own thoughts. But these are incredibly dark thoughts for any person, such that leaves her in dark anguish. My mind is begining to form more questions. Wonderful job bringing up the suspense here.
distracting herself with her routine.
allow me to quote another excellent phrase. This one is very relatable as I myself will use routine to block out thoughts.

Now this incident in the bathroom really had me. I expected that the mirror was somehow enchanted! Wonderful plot twist when she realizes that she's hallucinating. But worse yet...she grasps her own arm...are there two forces at work within her? One that wishes to destroy her? Hmmm...I must continue reading...

I also find it rather interesting that fire of all things is what calms her. That shows just how wild and chaotic her life is that something as unpredictable as fire calms her down.

Overall, quite an intriguing chapter! I do recommend perhaps changing the first sentence? I felt like I made for a bit of a weak beginning compared to your other better descriptive sentences. But again, that's my personal opinion.

her hair to be less chaotic
Also
I suggest changing this sentence just a bit to make the phrasing slightly less awkward.

Aside from that, my last suggestion would be to perhaps shorten this chapter? I felt that although the conversations were really impactful in the scene, I felt that the scene was a little bit drawn out where we see Kita revolve around in the same thoughts multiple times which perhaps could be slightly shortened?

Please take only the suggestions you find helpful and wishing you the best in your writing journey!
-Kaia




RavenAkuma says...


Hello, welcome!! Thanks for the advice, I've been meaning to do a little touch-up on the beginning chapter. glad you enjoyed, thanks for taking the time to read and review! :)



Kaia says...


Of course! I hope I wasn't too harsh on my critiques. As I said, it's been a minute since I've reviewed. T_T



RavenAkuma says...


Not at all!! It's very helpful ~

Plus, don't worry about being harsh with me, I got thick skin thanks to Wattpad hell XD



Kaia says...


I'm glad. I just don't want to hurt anyone's feelings. :D



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Thu Feb 22, 2024 4:35 pm
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keeperofgaming wrote a review...



I absolutely love this. Kita's emotional distress allows us to see deep within her mind and psyche, allowing us to understand her fear.
Her hallucinations also hint to a dark and shadowed past, allowing us to infer that something happened to her.
Also, with her fear that everyone hates her, it shows her troubled life, and her want for everything to be better.
Her sickness is also interesting and raises the question of her mental state more, as it seems like she is tearing herself apart.
The story gives off an eerie feeling and allows me to see that Kita needs help, and can't just handle things on her own.
Given the prologue, it implies that either the sylphs won or were forced into hiding. Either way, the dark influence allows for a wonderful introduction to the story.
Her want to hide gives an interesting idea of her situation, not to mention what keeps her together.
Her will to press on is inspiring and gives the idea that she is someone unused to backing down, and she will fight for what she believes, even if it is difficult.
All in all, its an interesting story with an interesting start.




RavenAkuma says...


Hello, welcome to TFR! I'm glad you enjoyed, thanks for taking the time to read and comment! :)



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Thu Dec 28, 2023 3:40 pm
Liminality wrote a review...



Hi there RavenAkuma! Lim again with a review.

General Impressions and Analysis

My impression of Kita Rein from this first chapter is that she is a struggling person trying to get by. She has been outcasted by a narrow-minded society and doesn’t have many people she can turn to for actual help. The last line of the chapter makes me think something bad will happen in the next one, like maybe she’ll make a bad decision or be attacked by the mysterious thing coming through her mirror.

The setting seems like a mixture of modern and medieval elements, and that appears here more than it does in the prologue, since Kita’s everyday household items are described. She has a toothbrush, indoor plumbing and a clock, and she lives in a village, so the society they live in seems quite advanced to me.

I get the strong sense that mental illness and mental health are going to be a theme in this story. This is because the conversation Kita has with the mysterious voice sounds like something one would have with a therapist, and also because she describes going to unhelpful doctors and taking pills that cause nausea. I also get the feeling that the supernatural thing that is bothering her at night and via the mirror is going to form a kind of metaphor or analogy to mental health issues. I might be totally wrong on all this, and I’m sure I’ll find out in later chapters if I am, but that’s just what I’m thinking at the moment.

Descriptions

I liked the descriptions in this chapter quite a bit better than in the prologue! I liked how the action in the scene with the mirror was described. There was a good balance of colour, movement and texture descriptions. The suddenness of the creature’s appearance and disappearance was also handled well. It felt very real, and I could feel the tension from the moment that the mirror transformed.

I also liked the descriptions of what Kita has in her house. Describing what materials some of the objects or locations were made of was a nice touch, I think. For example, an “oil lamp” brings a more detailed image to mind than just ‘lamp’, and it helps me imagine the setting when I know a lot of the stuff in Kita’s home is made out of wood.

Dialogue and Monologue

Something I think could be improved is the realism (or consistency) of the dialogue. I found that some of Kita’s spoken lines didn’t seem to mesh very well with the flow of the scene or the way she talks in general. I noticed that Kita tends not circumlocute, as in she’s quite plain-spoken in most of the lines, such as in:

Kita sighed heavily, "Not even two-thirty. When did I lie down? Around midnight?"


Because of that this line stuck out to me:
Kita sighed, "I've explored the method of trying. It doesn't work."

I feel like the bolded phrase would make sense for someone who is a flamboyant or dramatic personality or if someone is trying to be sarcastic, but the surrounding description doesn’t help me pin down which, so I feel like it’s an out of character moment. For instance, why doesn’t she say something like “I have tried. It doesn’t work.”? Is she being sarcastic here, and how do we, as the readers, know? Hopefully that makes sense ^^’

Another thing I noticed is that the last part of Kita’s monologue sounds more like written language than spoken language. In “One was a 'famous' person in the city,” – I’m not sure how the single quotation marks around ‘famous’ are supposed to be translated as speech. Is she making quotation marks with her fingers? Pausing and then exaggerating the word?
One was a 'famous' person in the city, which Yuna begged me to see.

The sentences in the monologue sometimes seem too compact and too complex, whereas ordinarily when people are talking to themselves out loud, sentences are shorter and less complex, because they have to think up the words to say on the fly. (For instance, if I were to rewrite that quoted section to be like what I described, it might look something like: One of them was even famous. From the city. Yuna begged me to see them.) That part just took me out of the scene a bit because I don’t expect someone’s self-talk out loud to be so ‘polished’, in a way.

Overall

This was a good first chapter. It manages to hook the reader and introduce some elements of how the story is going to work: the mixture of modern and fantasy elements, the main character’s conflict and the kind of society they live in. I think dialogue (and monologue) can be quite challenging to write. For this type of scene, one suggestion I have could be to study how monologues, or scenes where a character speaks to an ‘inner voice’ work in a modern stageplay (if you can find a script or a short recording online), since the people who write those scripts have to make them seem natural for real-life actors to say them.

Hope this is helpful, and let me know if you’d like more feedback on something specific!
-Lim

Edit: oops, and just as a note, I might not be able to review every single chapter fully, but I'll certainly read them and give a comment here and there. I'll try to focus on giving the Green Room chapters attention since later chapters tend to have a hard time in the Green Room than intros- hope that works!




RavenAkuma says...


Hi, thank you for taking the time to read and review Chapter One! And of course, please feel no pressure to comment/review on every chapter, I understand there's a lot lol. It's great to know how the dialogue comes off, these are the exact things I'm hoping to find and fix.

On a side note, regarding the general time period, I try to imply that Sybilius is generally in a late Victorian/early Edwardian kind of era, where there are some advancements in technology but it's still "old-timey." I hope that helps give a better idea for future chapters.

Anyway, thanks again, and should you continue in the book, I hope you enjoy! :)



Liminality says...


On a side note, regarding the general time period, I try to imply that Sybilius is generally in a late Victorian/early Edwardian kind of era, where there are some advancements in technology but it's still "old-timey."

Ah, I see! That makes sense :D

Glad to know the review is helpful!



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Tue Dec 12, 2023 9:56 am
IcyFlame wrote a review...



Hey there Raven, I'm back for chapter one of this! I'm interested to see where we end up after that action packed prologue, so I'm going to jump right in.

Kita Rein could barely feel her own breaths. The air coming in and out was so faint and light that it passed her airways like a ghost. The sylph's sickly, discolored pale skin had beads of cold sweat forming along her brow, and goosebumps covered her limbs. Her dark violet hair, which fell just a bit below her shoulders, was matted and strewn all about, even over her eyes.

Despite her rushing thoughts and uncomfortable position, Kita found herself unable to move. She felt like a corpse with a spirit trapped inside, unable to move or look away.

I think these first two paragraphs aren't quite as powerful as the start of your prologue. The lines are a bit more hesitant, less punchy. I often find when I'm writing for a character I'm not used to it takes me a bit of time to get into their narrative voice, which may be what's happening here - it might be that now you're further into the novel it will be easier to come back and edit this chapter with Kita's characterisation being a bit stronger.

It's not a weak start by any means, but having just read your prologue I know you can make this even better! It also definitely gets stronger in the subsequent paragraphs; description is definitely your strength.

"It can't just be because of my eyes that they don't like me," Kita spoke under her breath. "I never do anything too out-of-the-ordinary, either. I thought moving to this village would change that, but it didn't. What is wrong with me? Can I even fix it?"

This feels like maybe too much exposition? Kita is saying a lot to herself that helps the reader understand the story, but would she really be speaking all of this aloud if it weren't for our benefit?

"I'm sick," she spat disdainfully. "I'm sick, and I can't get help. I've seen three doctors, already, and taken two medications. One was a 'famous' person in the city, which Yuna begged me to see. I only agreed because of the ridiculous amount of money she put in. I couldn't tell her that all she paid for was judgmental looks, name-calling, and pills that made me vomit."

Same again here - it feels like she's summing up all that's happening/happened to her. Maybe it could feel more like she's talking to her dog, or even herself, but at the moment it's like she's telling the story to the reader which feels a bit too convenient.

I think the plot is strong and the character is certainly interesting, I just think there are some tweaks needed to make the chapter feel a bit more natural.

Looking forward to chapter two!

Icy




RavenAkuma says...


Good to know! Thank you very much for your review! :)



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Thu Dec 07, 2023 11:02 pm
dragonight9 wrote a review...



Hi again, I'm really intrigued by this new character and the darkness within.

As I'm reading through:

I liked your description of Kita at the start, it set the mood of the chapter well. I did find that picturing her environment initially. If you had added a brief description of the bed she was lying on as part of your initial description I think that would help.

I liked the dark conversation she had with herself and the fact she seemed to belittle herself even more than the dark echo really shows how bad she's doing. I don't see that in a lot of stories, usually the hero is trying to resist those thoughts but Kita is already past the point of giving up.

One bit of grammar I was unsure of was the line "...wrong place, before, that this is the right place?"
I don't think you need the comma after 'place'.

I love the name you chose for the dog 'Stud'.

That 'episode' with the mirror was really good. It totally creeped me out and even scared me a little. Kita's dismissiveness of this episode also reinforced just how bad her life is.

The fire is a nice touch since too much dark at the start of a book can be off putting.

The end is a great cliffhanger and that bit of exposition about her previous attempts to get help was well integrated. No info dumping here!

Overall thoughts:

Your descriptions and the tough life of the MC (Kita) instantly drew me in and got me invested. I really want to see what is causing all this misfortune and how she'll overcome it.

By the end it did start to feel a bit repetitive how she kept saying how hopeless her situation was. However, this is very accurate to how someone in this kind of depressed state of mind would think. Hopeless thoughts on repeat seemingly forever. You could leave it as is or not. It's great either way.

Last thoughts:

I just wanted to mention that I have also been struggling with insomnia recently so this was a bit more relatable than I was expecting. Of course I'm nowhere near this bad but it still makes me understand and connect to your character a lot.
Luckily for me I have a loving God who helps me through dark times. I hope Kita finds someone she can trust to support her.

Great job and have a wonderful day/week!




RavenAkuma says...


It's great to hear that Kita and her environment are giving off all the intended undertones, lol. That remark on sentence structure was noted, too. Thanks for reviewing, and glad you enjoyed! :)



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Tue Dec 05, 2023 11:43 am
PKMichelle wrote a review...



Hello friend!
Welcome to YWS! I saw your work in the Green Room and figured I’d check it out.


Per my interpretation, this was an incredible start to a novel! It works really well as the hook of the book, drawing readers in and giving them questions that will only be answered if they read more.

So far, it's following the story of an Aubade Sylph named Kita, who is going through something no one can explain, not even herself. And through this experience and all she is dealing with, she feels outcasted and alone in the world.

This is a very personable character, and the problems that she's facing work really well to draw the reader in, enticing them with her strange condition.


If I could offer any sort of advice, it would be something really small! I didn't notice too much wrong or anything that I would seriously want to change.

The story worked really well and flowed nicely as well. Everything made sense and was easy to read but there's just one thing you stated:

Even when she felt like her eyelids were weighted down by bricks, she couldn't find sleep.


It doesn't feel like "weighted" works too well in this context. It just sounds off. But remove the "t," and I think it would work just fine.

Even when she felt like her eyelids were weighed down by bricks, she couldn't find sleep.


I don't know if what you did is technically or grammatically wrong at all, but I know it feels easier to read it the second way, at least in my opinion.

But, obviously, this is just a suggestion, and it's always up to the writer, so please take this criticism lightly and know that I mean nothing negative by it—only trying to provide a somewhat useful critique.


If I had to pick my favorite part, it would have to be how you made Kita feel so relatable, even though most of your readers have probably not been through what she has.

I have personally no idea what she's going through or the toll it's taking on her, but some of the things she said just resonated with me in a way, and I'm sure they do with other readers as well.

Two examples of this are:

I've turned everything about my environment and my life around. I've committed to everything, yet I'm still failing. That tells me I'm the problem.


AND

I just need to admit it. My life is out of control. My days are unproductive, and my nights are just hell.


I have no idea what she's dealing with, but these two quotes make complete sense, and I feel for her. And it's quite amazing that you're able to make a reader feel that way about your character, so kudos to you!


Overall, this was a really fun read, and it definitely drew me in and made me excited for more! You used a lot of great concepts and had an amazing main character, making this an outstanding first chapter for your novel.

Thank you for taking the time to write and post this, and I hope the next chapters are just as amazing as this one!


Goodbye for now! I hope you have a magnificent day (or night) wherever you are!




RavenAkuma says...


Thank you very much for the review and suggestion! :)




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— Mea