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16+ Violence Mature Content

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by Rosendorn


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

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Thu Jul 05, 2018 12:31 am
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Vervain wrote a review...



Once more, into the breach! There's a lot more good stuff this chapter, probably because it's been edited already so most of the awkward things have already been pointed out/dealt with. I'm super happy to be getting around to this. c:

Let's start with good stuff again because that's the first thing that popped up!

Now she did glance at me. “You didn’t even lecture me on airborne poisons. What is it?”
I rubbed my forehead. “Figured you of all people would be smart enough to know that.”
<3 yes keep developing Kerani and Nitika! This is my favorite friendship out of all the relationships you've introduced so far (though romantically I'd love to see more of Vy/Isra bc YES).

I slid back in the water to try and reach balance, not knowing if this was a symptom of exhaustion or a sign I was about to wear out my antidote.
The fact I even doubted that pointed towards poison.
I don't remember if I've mentioned it before, but I love how smoothly you show us that Kerani is just plain good at her job. It's been mentioned before that the Empire probably couldn't find a match for her and I'm honestly curious because now part of me is going omg the Empire has found a match for her and the other part is wanting curiously to see what's happened and I am so so so excited.

The blood had streaks of clear liquid and sickly black woven into it, something I never particularly considered good signs.
Yeah Kerani, most people don't consider that a good sign... But oh man your description is so cool. More please <3

I needed to get to the city. Immediately.

Standing up as quickly as I did stopped that plan in its tracks. I needed to get to the guard healers immediately, instead.
Yes just stand up immediately after you're one hundred percent certain you've been badly poisoned with something that's closer to a rumor than fact -- that goes well for everyone! But it ties in to how headstrong Kerani is as a person and I'm so loving all of it.

Onto some other stuff now!

I had taken particular interest in designing such a luxurious bathing space, the various vials and jars making the room look like a proper princess’. Something I had dreamed of being at the time.
I want to hear more about little-Kerani. Not necessarily a ton more but more, enough to see how she's changed, and enough to show that she's...aware of her change, however she feels about it, etc. Even a tossed-out line of "I was ten when they asked me to design my rooms for the palace" (or however old she was).

Her feet kept moving, flicking water halfway across the pool. “I don’t recall my father mentioning you.”
That brought a smile to me, despite it all. “I tried to be invisible.”
She laughed. “I hardly even knew you existed my first few months here!”
More Kerani and Nitika! This one I'm pointing out because it's another space that could use more -- and the character development is great but part of me wishes that Kerani... felt something? That she's grown so close to Nitika in such a short time. Maybe it's because Ranya's gone and Chandi is pregnant so can't come into Kerani's quarters, but I wish there was something there to show us how she feels about being so close with someone who came to them from the Empire such a short time ago.

Style bits!

“It’s never a good sign when you go
this quiet.”
My hands lowered from rubbing my shoulder raw. “Compromise never means anything good. Compromise means stop being a guard.”
“Do you want to stop?”
This whole exchange down to "They asked for it" is a bit talking-heads-y. I know this is still a first go-round despite being edited but you know I have a moral compulsion to point out talking heads when I see it. Just for consideration. <3

“I always wondered why tasters in the harems was so tightly controlled.”
I don't quite understand this part. I don't know if it's because my brain is being funny or the writing isn't clear, but I'll reread and let you know via discord in the morning.

I pinched the bridge of my nose, now.
I saw someone point this out on the last one and noticed that Kerani actually does this a lot. I get that it's a physical tic, but I'd definitely keep an eye on it and make sure she doesn't do it often enough that your readers go "well that's a boring reaction" or anything. Maybe tie it to a specific emotional response and stick with using it only for that? I don't know.

my heart rate barely elevated. My mind was barely registering that was even a
problem.
Okay, I love this bit too. The reason I've pointed it out here is because you repeated "barely" in the span of 5 words -- I get into those description tics too, just thought I'd point it out for you.

Overall! I love this chapter (but I love every chapter, you know this) so far, and I love this scene in particular. It gives us more story on who Kerani is as a person, it gives us more on what's affecting her, it shows us that something terrible has happened -- even more terrible than initially anticipated. It shows us that Kerani is dealing with something, or someone, who is desperate to take her out and they're willing to drop some big money on that. I'm really curious how this is going to unfold and who's going to be behind everything.

Also oh my goodness the idea of Kerani going to palace healers instead! That's such an awful visual with the Snakesblood reacting to the kalisi.

I really adore what you're doing with this world and the characters and I'm so excited to see where this goes next!

Keep writing!




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Sun Jul 01, 2018 3:07 pm
Aley wrote a review...



Hey Rosey,

I think I recognize this series from talking with you and that makes me super excited XD

Overall, I only found one thing I think needs changing.

"Even though the ramps existed for exactly when I was too weak to walk and needed to relax in water."

fragment. Even though ___ I ___ You have the "I" but it's part of the first thing because of "extended to exactly when" which is making the "I" part a subordinate clause to it, and leaving out the "even though" "I" set up.

The story seems to be going well. I like how there is an element of explanation through this unwise individual. I think that's a really great way to exposition the situation and give us a good feeling of what's going on and who is who even this far into the story.

I feel like the only thing that you might want to do a little different is with your explanation of the poison because I'm not sure I understand exactly. Is it in the air? Is that why she says her chamber is poisoned? Or is she emitting some sort of poison because of the antidote? What's going on with that?

All in all, really good so far. Keep it up!




Rosendorn says...


so I'm not sure what you mean by "the poison" so I'm going to take a stab at both possibilities...
1-her room is her own poisons lab, and Nitika is pregnant. so she's got a giant workbench filled with poison samples and antidotes that may or may not be poisonous, and she is paranoid about possible dust being inhaled/damaging the baby
2- she herself has been poisoned with a cut, and is currently still experiencing after-effects over 24 hours later

if either of those are what you meant, let me know. I'm already considering clarifying Snakesblood, and I might clarify her room, but I'm not sure which one you meant



Aley says...


it was #1



Rosendorn says...


Alright, I'll keep that in mind to see if it's been explained enough in other chapters!



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Fri Jun 22, 2018 11:33 pm
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mellifera wrote a review...



Hey Rosendorn! I'm here to review, as requested!

Actually I got a bit carried away and went back to read the previous chapters because the summary at the beginning intrigued me enough and I really love the story so far <3 I love your writing style? I can't put my finger on what it is about it, but it's very...enchanting? For lack of a better word right now.

I saw you mention that Kerani was bisexual (besides it appearing in the story and stuff) and I just want to say how excited I am for that?? Uhhh, that sounds weird, but I don't see a lot of bisexual characters around and it always makes me feel very happy and fuzzy, so I really love that the protagonist is.


-So I might have just missed this, but do you ever describe the appearance of any of the characters? I don't have a clear read on what any of them look like (besides mentioning Kerani's father's skin tone - and I'm just going out on a limb to assume Kerani's is similar - and Nitika's) besides the way they dress.


I dragged myself out of bed, peeling off sweat soaked pajamas as I walked to her drawing a bath in my large pool.


Did she know Nitika was filling a bath for her before she walked in or was she just uncomfortable enough to take off her pajamas regardless of what Nitika was doing?

The water was up to my ankles, now, high enough that I started carefully unhooking my breastband so as not to have the small throwing knives fall out of their precariously clasped sheaths.


I feel like describing her breastband with the throwing knives could have been separated from the water being at her ankles? I'm not sure what the relevance of the two sentences are to each other to continue off of.

Nitika stared at the clank of wood on tile as I set it down,


Is that supposed to be plank of wood?

Despite the scare, my heart rate had barely elevated.


I could be wrong, I'm guessing this has to do with Kerani's PTSD? So I think I know what you're getting at, but it reads kind of funny with 'despite the scare' to me, because it just seemed like she was made aware of Nitika's presence again instead of being 'scared'. I guess the word choice is the what bothers me. Maybe 'Despite what should of been a scare' or something more like that would work with the other sentences? I don't know, maybe it just bothers me.

I pinched the bridge of my nose, now.


Don't think that comma belongs over there.


-I've noticed there's quite a few ellipses. There are a few closer together, like when Nitika is talking about how unusual it is for women to be forced onto a path and Kerani's following dialogue, where it brings down the intent of the ellipsis being used as a pause (The other part I noticed was at the end when Kerani's about recovering and then again when she gets a headache).


-For much of the bathing scene, there isn't much description or balance of anything but dialogue. It's a lot of the dialogue and a few actions (I nodded, she frowned, I shrugged, etc). There isn't much to take from body language or tone of voice. I've really enjoyed all your other chapters and I didn't have many problems with too much dialogue before, this one just feels a little heavy on it without a good balance with everything else. There's a lot of short lines, and while I appreciate the explanation of some of the things like Kerani's position, it gets a bit...not rushed, but almost choppy, in a way? It's repetitive, she did this, I did that. I'm not sure how to explain that best, hopefully that makes some amount of sense.


-Am I right to assume the magic is sensory and that different people are attuned to different things? Like, some people can read emotions more, some can sense danger, etc? I mean, I have a tendency to just run with things without really reading between the lines/reading too much into it and just assuming how things work, so I apologise if this is off the mark. Regardless, I love the magic system and how you have it set up. The whole novel has a very fantasy-ish vibe without being all 'dragons! mage who shoot fireballs! kingdoms!' and I'm a huge fan of that (not to say I don't like that too lol) because it's so refreshing to see something new like this.


I'm pretty sure that was a lot of gushing and a bit inconsistent haha, sorry about that. Hopefully you can get something out of that that's helpful :)

I hope you have a lovely day!




Rosendorn says...


Thanks! Glad you liked it.

Kerani is actually biromantic asexual, if you want to go the most exact. Isra's line about "how uninterested in skin you are" is the confirmation, but it's kinda hidden xD

So I might have just missed this, but do you ever describe the appearance of any of the characters?


Nope! lol I never figured out how I wanted descriptions to sound, at least when it came to people, so I avoided it. I'll probably stick in some more descriptions in the third draft once I've figured out how Kerani describes people.

For much of the bathing scene, there isn't much description or balance of anything but dialogue


Gah, right when I give this exact review to three people XD I knew something was missing in that scene, so I'll work on adding in some more setting. One of those cases where I had such a solid frame of reference I forgot not everyone does lol

Am I right to assume the magic is sensory and that different people are attuned to different things?


Yes, you're right. I have no real intention of spelling out the magic system in anything that resembles "quickly" (that's been my downfall most of the drafts I've written so I have actively tried to use as little magic description as possible), but magic is indeed based on different preferred abilities. There's some nature, some nurture, and a bunch of combinations therein lol

I really dislike it when everything is spelled out (feels unrealistic for me), so I've tried to make this feel as... organic? as possible. This is why there aren't really any descriptions of people; I found most of them in first person felt shoved in, and I really wanted to try and drill into Kerani's voice to the point where her describing people didn't feel like that.

I haven't found the answer to either yet.




I'm not so good with the advice... Can I interest you in a sarcastic comment?
— Chandler Bing