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One Quiet Moment

by humblebard1

He didn’t bother to look at the dead monster below him, the man turned bastion of darkness. The sword wrenched from its gut with a sickening squelch, and the paladin shook the gore from his blade with what was both disgust and a silent relief. Cheers erupted from the battlefield, of all those around him, paladins, soldiers, some commoners that had joined in the fight, they gripped each other like brothers, roaring with joy. Looking both to the people scattered and beyond them to the sunrise, he felt a smile spread across his bloodstained wounds despite the blazing ache and pain of his body; for a moment, tranquillity filled him just like the beaming rays on light that shone kindly on their victory. Tyr put a foot forward, ready to step into the new dusk of celebration, before his whole leg gave in below him with a sudden crack. Stifling a scream, he shifted to a more comfortable position, and didn’t dare to glance back at his shin, which hung from his knee at an undesirable angle; pain immediately blazed through him, burning like white fire to his skin. Gheythas came from the fray, his state slightly better than the paladin’s own, with the occasional scrape bleeding a deep red on umber skin tinged by the receding sunlight, and a deep laugh resonating from his lungs. Until he saw the crumpled form beneath him, the man gathering his breath, trying his hardest not to coil from the deep pain inside him; his face fell a slight upon seeing Tyr so weakened, but some peace remained, at least in his voice. He came to kneel beside him, allowing the paladin to comfortably lay within his arms, within his protection.

“We did it. We killed the lich, Gheythas. We’re… we’re heroes.”

You did it. And got away from it in… mostly one piece, I suppose.” He laughed with a rasp, struggling to muster the breath from his lungs. “Just stay awake with me for a while, Tyr. Watch the sunset, over our victory once more.”

The paladin relaxed his tensed muscles, letting the thoughts that had gripped him in a chokehold fall and sway with the light breeze. Gentle fingers brushed against his temples, tucking stray, wheat blonde strands of hair away from his vision; he didn’t bother to fan Gheythas’ unnecessary fussing away this time, for every ounce of his energy was spent, and the warm kiss against his forehead only brought him closer to slumber. The warlock rested his hands gently on his cold, dullened chestplate, smearing half-dried blood over the battered metal as he looked on to the meadows. “Look, you can see the house from here. Looks so small from high up, doesn’t it?”

Nodding languidly, his tired eyes trailed to their cottage, sandwiched between a narrow path of the town and the ever flowing river. He became fully enveloped in his arms, and as he drifted from conscience, only one thing remained on his mind.



“I know why I fight. For you.”

The warlock smiled deeply, his eyes creasing with light wrinkles. He traced his dirty face as he slowly dozed off, Gheythas’ golden eyes still fixated on the beautiful horizon, and at every last shining ray that beamed down on them kindly. The cheering and boisterousness of soldiers had subsided as they walked off to celebrate their victory, leaving him with only the gentle rise and fall of Tyr’s chest against his and the deepest, beautiful silence given by nature. Trees and sprouting buds swayed gently all around him, and he felt a single, burning tear fall down his cheek, falling to mingle with the spring dew. 

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30 Reviews

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Reviews: 30

Stickied -- Sun Jan 28, 2024 5:18 am
avianwings47 wrote a review...

Hello, fellow author! I saw your work in the Green Room and decided to deliver a bird-themed review for you, partially inspired by the YWS S'more Method! Let’s dive right into it! (Bird-style, of course)

Bird’s-Eye View: First Impressions!
First off, welcome to YWS! As a fellow new member, I can understand how scary it is to publish your first work! But I must say, you created a beautiful scene here! It was an enjoyable read with lovely imagery and a victorious mood.

Flying High: Things I Loved!
GAHHH I love the imagery you use! Even your diction feels so elegant, it just makes the whole scene feel right out of a fantasy novel. (Which, I guess it is, considering this is a chapter XD) You really made me feel like I was in the scene, watching it unfold right before me.
Honestly, I felt that this scene could just be a short story that stands alone. While I am curious to know the history of these two characters, we get such a good look into their world and lives that I felt satisfied just reading this small section. You did a wonderful job of giving us just enough information for it to not be confusing, but to also keep us wondering about the characters.

Bird Song: Favorite Lines!

"The paladin relaxed his tensed muscles, letting the thoughts that had gripped him in a chokehold fall and sway with the light breeze."

This is such a beautiful metaphor! Incorporating scenery can also give the readers a better picture of what the scene looks like, further drawing us into the story.

"'Look, you can see the house from here. Looks so small from high up, doesn’t it?'"

This brings such a sense of normalty to a place where war just took place, to where a raging battle was held. Such a simple sentence can bring joy to a moment in which the character feels weary. I don't know why I loved this line so much, other than what I just shared, but it made me smile.

Preen Your Feathers: A Bit of Advice!
The one piece of advice I would offer is to break up the first paragraph. Right now, I feel like it could be separated into two or even three separate paragraphs. Remember, paragraphs in creative writing can be as small as one word. Find places where you think ideas or thoughts shift and put a paragraph in there.

Remember, this is just my interpretation, so be sure to only take pieces of advice you want to use. You are under no obligation to change this piece!

Lifting Off: Closing Thoughts!
Overall, this was a beautiful moment captured between two characters. The feeling of the battle finally being over is such a freeing one, and you encapsulated it perfectly, while also showing us such a loving and enchanting scene. I hope to see more from you!

Keep writing! -Avian

humblebard1 says...

Thank you soooo much! Great to here some amazing advice, and so quickly after I put it out; this was before any editing, so I'll try and work a second draft and maybe publish that soon :)

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Mon Feb 05, 2024 7:25 pm
FluorescentAnt wrote a review...

Hello! I'm so sorry for the delay of this review. But thank you for ordering from my bubble tea shop!

I've got to say, this is a beautiful piece, and I really enjoyed reading it! It was really well-written and super descriptive, and I would comment more on that if not for the fact that this review is supposed to be about characters. So let's talk about characters, shall we?

In this chapter, we are introduced to two characters, Tyr and Gheythas. Tyr is a paladin who was fighting in battle and Gheythas is a warlock I think? At the beginning of the chapter, we are in the perspective of Tyr, and how he had just killed an enemy. Then, after victory, Tyr feels triumphant, ignoring his pain all over his body. This is an interesting trait about him, that victory made everything feel better. And also it is interesting how before, when he killed the enemy, he felt disgusted but also relieved, so he has mixed feelings about fighting in battle. There is good character development so far!

When Gheythas comes in, we are also learning stuff about him. He's kind of positive because he was laughing, but he is also kind, and he kneeled next to Tyr after seeing that he was weakened.

The rest of the chapter is basically sitting together, watching the sunset letting the fact of their victory sink in. From this, we know that they are good friends and very close, also because Tyr said that he fights because of Gheythas. It was a nice friendship moment between the two.

One thing I think you could work on is clarifying in the storytelling who you are talking about. While reading, I was slightly confused on who was doing what, since you said "he" a lot, but both Gheythas and Tyr seem to have he/him pronouns. I think you could use their names instead of "he" for some parts of the story. But that's just me.

Overall, I think you developed the characters really well in this character, as well as their relationship with each other. Your writing is really good, and I hope you will continue this story. Keep writing!


herbalhour says...


FluorescentAnt says...

I know but I didn't want to have to change it and then re-download it and re-generate the link, and besides, people can still call me LuminescentAnt anyway.

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542 Reviews

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Reviews: 542

Mon Feb 05, 2024 10:11 am
Liminality wrote a review...

Hi again! Lim here to review your story.

General Impressions

The first line starts off gritty and dark, then it transitions quite quickly into a more joyful, victorious atmosphere. There is also a sense of tenderness as Gheythas and Tyr interact. My brain was mostly thinking about how Tyr was going to deal with that injury, wondering how could he (and Gheythas, actually) be so calm when his leg was broken like that. (So I’ll admit I was a bit distracted!)

This extract made me think of a heroic tale of knights, and the fact that the beast is a lich made me think of a more video-game-esque setting. The cottage part made me think that the idea of ‘home’ is an important part of the story. Like your other story, ‘Love’, the light imagery is quite prominent. The sunrise is the image that lingers in my mind after reading this.


Something I liked was the characterisation of Gheythas and Tyr’s relationship. You’ve managed to frame them as being very important to each other in a few different ways. 1. Despite there being lots of people technically in the scene, Gheythas and Tyr only interact with each other, almost like they’re in their own little bubble. 2. I thought it was interesting that Gheythas remarks that they’ve become “heroes”, which is something probably relevant to the townsfolk, but Tyr seems to respond to that (indirectly) in the last lines by emphasising that Gheythas is his reason for fighting (and presumably not to become a hero).


Something that has room to grow is the realism of the post-battle scene. Like I mentioned before, I was quite confused by the characters’ reactions to Tyr’s injury. It sounds like he broke a bone clean through, and I’ve never seen a scene in fiction where that happens and the character can just hold a regular conversation after. Unless Tyr has superhuman pain tolerance (due to magic reasons?), I’d imagine he shouldn’t be able to shrug it off and think about their victory so quickly – at least not without some prior medical care or some magic happening.

My personal opinion is that fantasy stories like this don’t *have* to be super realistic in everything – I could imagine a vaguer description of injuries would still be believable in a scene. It’s just when I read about a specific real-life injury such as a broken leg without any additional context like magical pain tolerance, I think “wow, that guy should be rolling around in agony” based on what I’ve seen elsewhere and what I can imagine and empathise with.

Another comment I’d have is that the transition from gritty and dark to victorious happens kind of quickly, even within the same paragraph. So I felt like the pacing in this scene also had room to grow.


I liked the setting descriptions in the second half of the story.

their cottage, sandwiched between a narrow path of the town and the ever flowing river.

^This is a pretty image and also gives a sense of just how close the battle was to a settlement.
The image of “trees and sprouting buds” and “spring dew” at the end also evokes the feeling of hope and new beginnings.


This is a dynamic piece of writing, which conveys the characters’ strong emotions as a hard-fought battle is finally over. My main suggestions for revision would be to consider how battle injuries work in your fantasy setting – are they going to be consistently realistic and detailed, consistently vaguer and left to imagination, or will there be magic healing, for example? It could also help to look at pacing, by re-reading your story and thinking about how you would feel if you were the reader.

Let me know if something I said didn’t make sense!

humblebard1 says...

Hey Lim, thanks for the review! I'll definitely consider going back on pacing, and maybe the whole broken bone thing XD as a holy warrior with partial magic I guess you have a level of pain tolerance? But i will definitely go over this again.

Liminality says...

"as a holy warrior with partial magic I guess you have a level of pain tolerance" yeah that would make sense if that's something explained elsewhere in the story! Cheers to you as well!

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907 Reviews

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Wed Jan 31, 2024 1:17 pm
vampricone6783 wrote a review...

Hello there, human! I'm reviewing using the YWS S'more Method today!

Shalt we commence with the mutated S’more?

Top Graham Cracker - Tyr and Gheythas fought and won against a fearsome monster, but there is still more to do. There is also the mention of Paladins. (Is this based on DnD?? If so, awesome! I’m starting to play a little of the game myself.)

Slightly Burnt Marshmallow - I think that you meant to say “beaming rays of light”, but if you meant the word “on”, then disregard this part.

Chocolate Bar - Ooh, where do I start? There’s an abundance of things that I like about this story, but I think that my favorite part would have to be when Tyr said that he fought for Gheythas. That’s so sweet and heartfelt, to fight to the death for the one you love. :>

Closing Graham Cracker - A short yet powerful story of how in war, there is still hope. Hope for a better life, for victory, and for love. I have enjoyed reading this story and I’ll be sure to check out your other two.

I wish you a fabulous day/night!

humblebard1 says...

thank you for the review! Yeah, that's probably a typo (will sort it out XD) and the characters are based off dnd! The idea started out as two characters me and friend made but then it escalated and i have a novel WIP about them... really hope you enjoy playing! I practically live off it now :D

'Like' and 'equal' are two entirely different things.
— Madeleine L'Engle, A Wrinkle in Time