Young Writers Society

Home » Literary works » Novel / Chapter » Action / Adventure

E - Everyone

When the Wind Blows 1.1

by VictoriaBarton


Kaylee peered out the frosted window. Her reflection stared back at her, accentuating her feeling of loneliness. She looked past it, out into the snow covered hills. She’d never known anything else. When she was younger, her mother would tell her stories of the world beyond the hills, scary, horrifying stories. Stories of murder and death. Kaylee had been terrified of leaving her asylum up in the mountains ever since. However, she’d also seen what the frigid winters in the mountains could do to a person. She wondered sometimes if life beyond the hills was easier. There were many hardships to living where they did, and her mother had experienced it first hand. 

This winter had been surprisingly harsh. Her mother had been spending more and more time outside, despite Kaylee’s constant pleading for her to stay inside and finally get warm. However, her mother never listened. She kept going out, over and over again. Each time her mother returned inside empty handed, pale-faced, and with the look of someone who had seen a ghost. Only less than a week ago her mother had been outside on one of her long times alone, when it happened.

Kaylee had been inside tending to fire on the hearth. Nothing else seemed to matter, except keeping the dancing flames bright and steady. The warmth of the fire had spread throughout the living room and Kaylee had been thinking about setting a pot of water to boil for tea. She knew her mother would like tea after being out in the cold. However, as Kaylee stood to get the pot from the kitchen, she heard a horrible noise. Kaylee dropped to the floor and covered her ears. The screeching and moaning drifted from the kitchen and living room before suddenly dissipating as quickly and abruptly as it had come. Kaylee sat on the floor shaking uncontrollably. The pot stood still and silently where she had dropped it.

Kaylee didn’t know how long she had been sitting there, but she was jerked out of her fear and thoughts when she heard the door open. Her mother fumbled her way into the house and collapsed on the floor. Kaylee gasped and quickly ran to her mother. Kaylee shut the door and began helping her mother to the bed. Her mother groaned the entire way there.

“Mother? What happened?” Kaylee had asked. Her mother's weak, pale form lay on the bed. Kaylee thought her mother might disintegrate at any moment. 

“Don’t worry,” she had said slowly, “it’s just the cold.”

After that, her mother lapsed in and out of consciousness. Then, she stopped gaining consciousness. Kaylee had never mentioned the horrible sounds she had heard floating on the wind, but she knew that whatever had happened to her mother wasn’t a normal cold.

Her mother had been in a coma for two days now. Kaylee knew that she would die of starvation or dehydration soon, but she couldn’t make her eat or drink while she was unconscious. All Kaylee could do was wait. Thankfully, her mother had been training her for sixteen years how to fend for herself. Even as a very small child, she’d been learning everything from her mother. Kaylee could hunt, garden, cook, tan leather, skin animals, and much more. She could do everything she needed to survive, but it would still be much harder without her mother.

Kaylee had no idea what had happened to her mother. She didn’t dare assume that it had anything to do with what she had heard. She prayed that it was only a horrible sickness from the cold, that everything would be okay. However, deep down in her soul, she knew that it simply wasn’t true.

Kaylee snapped back to reality as she heard a noise from the back room where her mother was resting. She jumped from the window and rushed to the back.

“Mother? Mother! Are you awake?” she called as she entered the room.

However, she soon realized that it wasn’t her mother that had made the sound. Kaylee began backing up toward the door. She was about to bolt through the door when she realized that the door, in fact, was now gone. The room was completely sealed, as if there had been no door in the first place. Her mother, and the bed, and all the furnishings, too were gone. Instead, in their place was a single woman. Kaylee gasped and uttered a silent prayer.

The woman in the room with her looked like her mother, but wasn’t her mother. Kaylee had never seen two siblings, but she figured that if her mother had a sister, this woman had to be it. She had the same angled face with dark red lips, but oddly pale skin. Her hair was dark and straight, put up thoughtfully in an elegant braid bun with a small dagger holding it together. The woman stared intensely at Kaylee with her deep brown eyes, examining every part of her closely, with careful consideration. Kaylee tried to move, to back away, anything to get away from this woman scrutinizing her, but she couldn’t move. Every breath was forced and ragged.

“Hush child,” the woman whispered. Her voice floated on the air like a thousand birds chirping a soft song.

As soon as the words reached Kaylee’s ears, she collapsed to the ground and fell into a deep sleep. 


Note: You are not logged in, but you can still leave a comment or review. Before it shows up, a moderator will need to approve your comment (this is only a safeguard against spambots). Leave your email if you would like to be notified when your message is approved.







Is this a review?


  

Comments



User avatar
19 Reviews


Points: 83
Reviews: 19

Donate
Wed Jun 16, 2021 8:44 pm
ArctiWolf wrote a review...



This winter had been surprisingly harsh. Her mother had been spending more and more time outside, despite Kaylee’s constant pleading for her to stay inside and finally get warm. However, her mother never listened. She began spending more and more time outside. Each time her mother returned inside empty handed, pale-faced, and with the look of someone who had seen a ghost. Only less than a week ago her mother had been outside on one of her long times alone, when it happened.


Her mother had been spending more and more time outside and then adding not too far below, she began spending more and more time outside is repetitive.

Instead try: Her mother had begun spending more of her time outside, despite Kaylee’s constant pleading for her to stay inside and finally get warm. However, her mother never listened and each time her mother returned inside empty-handed, pale-faced, and with the look of someone who had seen a ghost. (just a suggestion)

“Don’t worry,” she had said slowly, “it’s just the cold.”

After that, her mother lapsed in and out of consciousness. Then, she stopped gaining consciousness. Kaylee had never mentioned the horrible sounds she had heard floating on the wind, but she knew that whatever had happened to her mother wasn’t a normal cold.

It's just the cold, describes the temperature, but then you go on to define it as a viral cold. The two are not compatible. I'm sure it was just a simple error though. Overall your writing looks good. Good luck and happy writing!




User avatar
56 Reviews


Points: 9749
Reviews: 56

Donate
Wed Jun 16, 2021 6:55 pm
AshlynPhoenix wrote a review...



Hiya Ashlyn here for a review!! As always, please keep in mind that this review is not intended to offend you or make your writing look bad!

However, she’d also seen what the frigid winters in the mountains could do to a person. She wondered sometimes if life beyond the hills was easier. She knew what the mountainous winters could do to a person.

Mountains, mountainous? That's a bit redundant, no?
Kaylee peered out the frosted window. Her reflection stared back at her, accentuating her feeling of loneliness.

This is a beautiful way to put it. I think describing the window as frosted, and 'accentuating her feelings of lonliness' really set the mood <33
Kaylee had been inside tending to the small fire set inside their fireplace.

This felt awkward for someone reason. Maybe you could just shorten that sentence like this:
Kaylee had been inside tending to the fireplace
.
Again, that's just you, and is entirely optional!
The screeching and moaning sound drifted from the kitchen and living room before suddenly dissipating as quickly and abruptly as it had come. Kaylee sat on the floor shaking uncontrollably.

You might want to omit the word 'sound'. Readers are already aware that screeching and moaning are sounds ^^
Every breath was forced and ragged.

“Hush child,” the woman whispered. Her voice floated on the air like a thousand birds chirping a soft song.

As soon as the words reached Kaylee’s ears, she collapsed to the ground and fell into a deep sleep.

I had mixed feelings about this ending.
On one hand, I'm glad you didn't turn to an overused scenario like a monster, or alien, but on the other, this didn't feel satisfactory to me. Maybe because this didn't entirely wrap up all the questions. What exactly had her mother been doing outside? Had she been fighting this woman for some reason? If so, then how did she manage to avoid being put to sleep like that? Also, where did Kaylee's aunt get her powers? You left off with more questions, then explanations in other words. I love a good story that ends on a mysterious note, but it just didn't seem to work here.
Aaand that concludes this review! I hope you found it helpful <333
BROUGHT TO YOU BY...
Image






Thank you so much for your review! I agree with what you've said, and will make revisions. I love feedback from other writers and it helps me improve as well. I understand your feelings about the endings. This wasn't intended to be a stand alone story. In fact, I'm working on a second chapter now. Hopefully as the story progresses, your questions will be answered.





*feeling about the ending*





Np <3333



User avatar
564 Reviews


Points: 59133
Reviews: 564

Donate
Wed Jun 16, 2021 5:08 pm
View Likes
MailicedeNamedy wrote a review...



Hi Victoria Barton,

Mailice here with a short review! :D

First of all, welcome to YWS! :D

The title made me curious because it sounds very beautiful but also very mysterious. I like that. My first impression was also quite positive. There was a bit of a feeling that something was missing in the story, but let's start with the positive.

You have a really interesting writing style. You build up an exciting text that reveals many details in fragments. As a reader, you can read a lot between the lines, and interpret a bit what is meant. Through the subliminal notes and descriptions, you manage to say a lot without writing a lot. That's what I really like about the story at the moment. For a first chapter, you manage to draw the reader in right away.

But I also think that you remain cryptic because of the distributed information. You build up a great and also eerie atmosphere, but seen over the whole chapter, it feels like there is a lot of information from many sources without any interpretation. That bothered me a bit, that you give away one piece of information, but then immediately move on or tell something new, where as a reader you don't know so directly if it builds on something or not.

Nevertheless, I like this style. It just takes a bit of getting used to and I think that will come with the next chapters and as a reader you get new information and how it all fits together. In short; at the moment it's a bit foggy when you read it. You have one clue, and once you have that, you see the next one in the mist. :D

You start off with a really engaging introduction that immediately gives the reader an incentive to read on. You build up questions as you give a short narrative, and Kaylee and her memories. I especially like how you give a new piece of information from sentence to sentence without it feeling overwhelming.

I just think that maybe you could connect some sentences, otherwise it reads choppy in places. Because of the simple attitude of the sentence structure, after a while the reader gets too bogged down, because the full stop should be used more to give a particularly dramatic twist or to present a very important point. From the second section on, you manage this better, and the sentences seem longer and no longer as halting as in the introductory section.

This winter had been surprisingly harsh.


What I like about your paragraph is that you give explanations here, too, which makes the first sentence feel like an introduction or a summary that you then expand on. You create a good structure.

Tears streaming down her cheeks and her voice straining to make the words form on her lips.


I don't know who's meant here, who's got tears streaming down. Kaylee, or her mother? It doesn't make much sense to me that it's Kaylee, since she doesn't know exactly what's happened yet, but you add it after her dialogue, so I lead to attribute the crying to her.

I noticed that in some places where a little more time goes by, you change the paragraph. I would try to add another line with a dash or an other symbol, so that the reader notices right away that one part is finished and the action continues later (or somewhere else).

The woman in the room with her looked like her mother, but wasn't her mother. Kaylee had never seen two siblings, but she figured that if her mother had a sister, this woman had to be it.


Here you would have had the opportunity to give a short description of the mother's / woman's appearance to give the reader a better picture. I can say the same for Kaylee. It's only the first chapter, but I think there were some good parts where you could have described her appearance.

It was, in summary, a very good start to a longer novel. I like how you set up a lot of things at the moment, and gave a great introduction, about Kaylee and life. I'm looking forward to seeing what happens next.

Have fun writing!

Mailice






Thank you so much for your review. I agree with every point you've made. Sometimes it's really good to get other people's opinions for things that you might not have noticed in the beginning. Definitely some editing to be done in the future. Hopefully, some of my choppy writing and bad etiquette will be resolved over the next few chapters as I expand on the story and practice writing more.




I communicate much better on paper than I do when I open my mouth.
— Aaron Sorkin