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The Hero's Brother (3.1)

by mellifera


Carter didn’t get any sleep that night. Tossing and turning, laying still and staring at the ceiling, the wall, or the headboard of his bed. The only things that kept running through his mind, moving too fast for him to try to catch in his hand and hold still long enough to understand, were Shiloh and coterie.

None of it made any sense. Questions swirled around the hazy outlines of his mind, running like dozens of rivers splitting off into impossible waterways that had no end.

Was Shiloh really in the coterie? What if Isha and Gideon were lying? Where would Shiloh be if they were? Where would she be if they weren’t? If they were telling the truth, why would Shiloh lie? If they were, why would she be in the coterie at all?

Despite the slight buzz running through his veins and the overall distressing nature of the whole business, Carter didn’t feel much of anything, except awake. He grew annoyed fairly quickly, wishing that he could just fall asleep quickly. Why hasn’t something invented an off switch for anyone’s brain yet?

He supposed there was an off switch, but he didn’t want to entertain that idea to much depth.

So Isha might have been right about not being the only one who wanted answers. The great unknown of black and white and the grey in between loomed before Carter like a monster with huge teeth. He felt as though his feet were glued to the ground, and without any means to fight the monster, it was just waiting for the perfect second to devour him.

She had, however, been wrong to think Carter was crazy enough to come after them. Isha might have been nice enough before, but that didn’t change that her and Gideon had admitted to being in one of the coteries. Or at least, associated with one. Maybe she had been playing nice on purpose.

Maybe they did mean to hurt Shiloh and Isha had lied about that. Maybe they were trying to lure Carter in too, so when he arrived at the inn, he’d be ambushed and captured and forced to do horrible things.

A storm swirled in his stomach when he couldn’t decide what was worse: being forced into the coterie and all the kinds of perfectly awful that came with it, or never seeing Shiloh again.

Gideon had sure looked like he wanted to take a chunk out of Carter. He couldn’t be that far out of the realm of possibility, right?

Thin beams of the early, pale golden sunlight were starting to slice through the trees. From what Carter could see above the plentiful bushels of green treetops, a powder blue dawn was starting to swallow the last of the silent, cold dark of the clear night sky.

He rolled out of bed shortly after he started seeing the glint of the sun. It wasn’t much earlier than he would’ve normally gotten up, but the second Carter put weight on his feet, a bone deep exhaustion settled over him like an itchy, unwanted blanket.

Carter forced himself into the kitchen with all the enthusiasm as a dead cat. The worn-out and yellowed wall clock that couldn’t have been much bigger than Carter’s hand – in fairness, Carter had big hands – ticked with a sad little hissing noise. It read just after five in the morning.

The irate-blanket feeling stayed with Carter as he prepared a meagre breakfast of a leftover muffin that Whisper had given him – recently enough that it couldn’t have been that bad, he hoped – and a tin mug of milk.

He ate sullenly, wanting nothing more than to return to bed and bury himself in soft, warm blankets. Maybe he should have tried covering his head with them. Maybe it would have given the cue to his mind to shut up for a while and let him rest.

Starting to chores and letting the horses out into their respective pastures was no easier. The sun had started to break through the tree line and cast a pleasant, buttery hue over the landscape.

At another time, Carter might have been more appreciative of the view, delighted even. But it wasn’t another time, and he merely dragged his feet against the gently waving glass of Bazzoli’s neatly tended lawn and wondered why it was that he didn’t just go back to his bed.

Reese was sweet enough to nose at Carter’s face and snuff into his hair when he came into her pasture to move her, as if checking to make sure he was okay.

He was cleaning the stalls when he heard the old barn doors, with the rusted hinges, squeal as they opened. Carter jumped, a crawling feeling running up his arms, and paused to peer out of the stall. He heard a stomping noise from down the aisle.

Bazzoli was already scowling by the time he looked at Carter and crossed his arms over his chest. His dark auburn, cropped hair was slicked back with some sort of gel. Carter supposed it was to make him look fancy or rich, but he thought it just made him look like he’d been rolling in grease.

I’ve told you a thousand times to oil those hinges,” Bazzoli told Carter. His eyes were still puffy from sleep, and he wore some sort of butcher’s apron. Carter didn’t feel like asking why. Chances were, it was just because it made him feel tougher.

Carter shrunk away from him and shrugged, looking down at his scruffy shoes that had strips peeling off them at the toe. “Been busy,” he mumbled at the floor, clutching the handle of shovel in a white knuckle grip.

When he risked a glance up, he found Bazzoli taking in his appearance. He harrumphed with displeasure. “You look like you slept in one of the stalls last night. What trouble you getting into?” He squinted at Carter.

Um, I. Um, nothing, I-I just couldn’t, um. I couldn’t sleep.” It wasn’t a lie, but it sure felt like one. But Carter was more afraid of facing Bazzoli’s punishment if he found out that Gideon and Isha had been here. Would he be mad? That wasn’t Carter’s fault. Right?

He didn’t want to find out.

Bazzoli gave him a long, hard look, before waving his hand and grumbling to himself. “Stop saying ‘um, um’,” he mocked, raising his voice into a pig-like squeak. “It makes you sound like a whining dog.”

Despite the mocking tone, there wasn’t much heat behind Bazzoli’s words. It was a dismissive tone and Carter just nodded to play along. He stayed rigid, ready for anything, but Bazzoli was more asleep than angry.

There was several moments that followed of silence, where Bazzoli gazed around the barn with a scrutinising look. Carter held his head down and waited until Bazzoli either dismissed him or left.

Finally, his boss yawned and his arms dropped to his sides. He pointed at Carter, his meaty finger wavering in front of them.

I have clients coming by who are looking for a stud later. Do them and yourself a favour, make yourself scarce.” Bazzoli considered him for a long moment. “You can go into town to go visit that little witch of yours if everything is straight and in order.” He wagged his finger once more in Carter’s face before dropping his arm. “Don’t forget that I’m the one that stands between you and living in those dark alleys with no money, boy.”

Carter nodded quickly but heat still rose to his cheeks at Bazzoli’s derogatory tone when he mentioned Whisper. If he were a little braver, he would have corrected him. He knew it was the right thing to do, but he kept his mouth clamped shut instead.

He expected Bazzoli to leave him alone then, but Bazzoli continued to linger. He stared at Carter for several uncomfortable moments, and Carter squirmed under his gaze. Then Bazzoli harrumphed again. A strand of his oily hair popped out of place and stuck sideways.

Where’d that pretty sister of yours get off to? I didn’t see her come back last night.”

The mention of his sister made Carter’s stomach turn. He didn’t feel like mentioning that Bazzoli had also missed two people who were probably coterie members too. He shrugged instead, rubbing the toes of his shoes together. “Um. I don’t know. I, um, she’s probably at her, um. Her job. A-at the crossroads.”

He felt silly for clarifying, Bazzoli had heard that Shiloh had gotten that job. Or at least, she said she had. Carter wasn’t so sure now.

Hmph.” Bazzoli sniffed. “If I were her, I’d have thrown you to the wolves as a squirming piglet. She’s got enough looks that she doesn’t need a sorry kid brother like you dragging her down.”

Carter also didn’t want to mention that Bazzoli could have done that when Carter was younger, and he hadn’t. His cheeks burned at his comment about Shiloh enough that he didn’t think much about it either.

He’d always hated the way some people spoke about his sister, as if she were some object. Shiloh always told him to ignore them. Carter couldn’t help but wonder how she felt about them, even though she said she could handle it.

Bazzoli nodded to himself finally and frowned at Carter. “This whole stable better be new and shiny,” he said, without specifying when it needed to be new and shiny by. He had a tendency to neglect important details like that.

Without another word, Bazzoli turned and walked out of the barn. Although his walking was more like clomping. He was a bear of a man in most every sense. Carter was grateful that Bazzoli wouldn’t be able sneak up on him, anyway.

He heard the pained creak of the old barn door’s hinges again. “For God’s sakes, boy, oil those hinges!” He heard Bazzoli shout, just before the door slammed shut and Carter was left alone once more.

Letting out a long breath, Carter let himself relax. It had been one of Bazzoli’s better days, and as long as Carter could stay out of the way later, he might be able to pretend everything was normal.

Pretend that two strangers hadn’t appeared out of nowhere yesterday and implied his sister to be affiliated with the coterie.

The muffled noise of a clock chiming made Carter jump again. His eyes darted around the stable, and then tapped the end of the shovel again his forehead. He’d been expecting someone to leap out of the shadows with a knife again.

Without realising what he was doing, Carter counted the number of chimes as they passed. He stayed still long enough to count seven chimes, before they cut off and Carter shook his head. He frowned at himself and turned back into the stall to continue cleaning.

He had about two hours to finish cleaning the barn and making sure everything was ‘straight and in order’ and get to town before the clock struck ten.

As he shovelled another scoop of the manure into the wheelbarrow that waited patiently outside the stall for him, the sensation of cold water trickling down his spine gave Carter a nasty chill.

Bazzoli hadn’t mentioned when his clients were coming over. Why was Carter trying to get to town before ten rolled around? Most of Bazzoli’s appointments were in the afternoon, because the man himself loathed mornings enough to avoid them where he could.

You want answers, don’t you? You’re not the only one.

It took all the time for Carter to put another shovel full in the wheelbarrow before he remembered who had said that to him. The chill ran through him again. He realised that he had already started scheduling everything in his mind to be able to get to Greenwich before Gideon and Isha had left.

No,” he said, and then felt foolish. They weren’t here to hear him decline their offer. It was just Carter, and now he was talking to himself and considering chasing after perfect strangers who would probably kill him in his sleep. Or worse.

He couldn’t just run off into the blue on the off chance that Shiloh was in the coterie and Gideon and Isha were actually her friends. Friends? Were they friends? Did coterie members have friends?

Maybe Whisper would know what to do. She was smarter and braver than Carter by a longshot, she’d have better advice then Carter’s panicky mind.

But there was a worm wiggling around his heart like it had infested an apple, because he could ask Whisper whatever he wanted about what he should do. He knew, if it came down to it, Shiloh’s opinion would matter more. And Carter knew if he was in the same situation as Shiloh, there would have been no hesitation in demanding to come along.

He had three hours to decide whether to follow his heart or his mind. Carter didn’t know which one was less reliable in this whole situation.

word count: 2,177


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Fri Sep 06, 2019 3:58 am
Querencia wrote a review...



Hello! I'm happy to be reading more of your lovely story today. :)

She had, however, been wrong to think Carter was crazy enough to come after them. Isha might have been nice enough before, but that didn’t change that her and Gideon had admitted to being in one of the coteries. Or at least, associated with one. Maybe she had been playing nice on purpose.

...wouldn't that make Isha RIGHT rather than wrong?? Some of this overthinking of Carter's gets me a little confused (as I'm sure it's confusing him too!)

being forced into the coterie and all the kinds of perfectly awful that came with it

We know so little about coteries! Does Carter also know nothing? Because something specific to fear would be a little more powerful.

The one thing I would say about this is mainly about Bazzoli. It's hard to make up my mind about him! I got the impression from the other chapter that he didn't check in on Carter very often? So I didn't expect him to actually be awake early in the morning and bossing Carter around. Also, although I can really imagine Carter's fear of Bazzoli, a lot of his words/threats feel empty to me. I think it might be far more menacing if he had concrete deadlines, "if this isn't done by X time, I will kick you out" instead of, "man I should have kicked you out when you were younger". I guess it might be more hurtful to Carter to have his sister criticized (it made me sad!), but it just feels like he could have a little more oomph.

I liked the slower pace of this chapter! There was some nice description, and I can really feel Carter's agony. But he's already showing some bravery, thinking about how his sister would see the situation, even though that's not what he would do. I really appreciate it! And he also totally looks out for Whisper, even though he doesn't speak up. Overall, the atmosphere of this chapter is really well done. :)

-Q




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Sun Jul 14, 2019 1:11 pm
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JabberHut wrote a review...



HELLO. I AM BACK.

Why hasn’t something invented an off switch for anyone’s brain yet?


This is the most relatable thing on the planet. Something, someone, somewhere, someday. Any and all of it is so truE I NEED AN OFF SWITCH FOR MY BRAIN.

He supposed there was an off switch, but he didn’t want to entertain that idea to much depth.


Okay that got dark so quickly. XD

It's interesting that the door was squeaking. Is this the same door that Isla and Gideon used? 'Cause we didn't hear the door then if it was. Or I don't at least remember that detail.

Ooooh that's interesting, Bazzoli knew him when he was younger? Or was that throwing-to-the-wolves comment meant to say that anyone could have done that to him when he was younger? I'm also curious as to why Bazzoli insists on keeping Carter around if he doesn't particularly like him. Perhaps for his good skills/relations with the horses? I assume Shiloh still works for Bazzoli if she's living in one of his cottages too, so she must be of some value.

I also have not seen another workhand here yet! Which surprises me for some reason. But Bazzoli DOES know about Whisper, too. I wonder how he knows Whisper since they seem to work in a different place entirely. Though still horse business, I suppose, so maybe they all kinda know each other since they all, at some point, run into each other.

I just scrolled back up to continue reading and am THOROUGHLY CREEPED OUT that Bazzoli referred to Shiloh as 'the pretty sister.' BACK OFF, DUDE.

LOL. It seems ironic requesting that a barn of horses be nice and shiny. I kind like that he says this, though. Adds a bit of ignorance to his character, if that's who he is.

Why is Bazzoli shouting at Carter for not oiling the hinges yet Y'ALL JUST HAD A CONVERSATION, BAZZOLI. CHILL YO BEANS.

I legit thought maybe a bucket of water was dumped on his back. But it was just a chill. He's okay. We're okay.

OHHHHH I LIKE HOW YOU DID THE TEN O' CLOCK THING. I had forgotten the time was 10:00 to meet her, so that was super smooth reminder. His brain was subconsciously watching the clock for him. I love this SO MUCH.

Whisper has a she pronoun. I think in the first chapter, the pronoun used was "they" but maybe my brain got mixed up with the horse. I don't know. I know "they" was used a lot during their exchange in chapter one.

FOLLOW YOUR HEART, CARTER. YOUR HEEEAAAARRRRT.




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Wed May 08, 2019 10:56 am
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Panikos wrote a review...



Hi, melli!

Small Comments

Why hasn’t something invented an off switch for anyone’s brain yet?


This line felt a bit strange to me just because I associate 'off switch' with electronics more than anything, and the impression I've got so far is that this is a kind of old-timey style setting. The comparison seemed a little out of place. Then again, I don't think you've actually confirmed what kind of era this story is set in, so maybe I'm just jumping to conclusions.

He rolled out of bed shortly after he started seeing the glint of the sun. It wasn’t much earlier than he would’ve normally gotten up, but the second Carter put weight on his feet, a bone deep exhaustion settled over him like an itchy, unwanted blanket.

Carter forced himself into the kitchen with all the enthusiasm as a dead cat. The worn-out and yellowed wall clock that couldn’t have been much bigger than Carter’s hand – in fairness, Carter had big hands – ticked with a sad little hissing noise. It read just after five in the morning.

The irate-blanket feeling stayed with Carter as he prepared a meagre breakfast of a leftover muffin that Whisper had given him – recently enough that it couldn’t have been that bad, he hoped – and a tin mug of milk.

He ate sullenly, wanting nothing more than to return to bed and bury himself in soft, warm blankets. Maybe he should have tried covering his head with them. Maybe it would have given the cue to his mind to shut up for a while and let him rest.

Starting to chores and letting the horses out into their respective pastures was no easier. The sun had started to break through the tree line and cast a pleasant, buttery hue over the landscape.

At another time, Carter might have been more appreciative of the view, delighted even. But it wasn’t another time, and he merely dragged his feet against the gently waving glass of Bazzoli’s neatly tended lawn and wondered why it was that he didn’t just go back to his bed.

Reese was sweet enough to nose at Carter’s face and snuff into his hair when he came into her pasture to move her, as if checking to make sure he was okay.


I feel like most of this information about Carter getting up and setting to work isn't necessary. You could just cut the first scene off with Carter admitting defeat and getting out of bed, then open a new scene with him in the stables right before Bazzoli shows up. You don't need to describe the transition from one scene to another. We only need to see what's important.

“This whole stable better be new and shiny,” he said, without specifying when it needed to be new and shiny by. He had a tendency to neglect important details like that.


This is good. Bazzoli is better characterised in this chapter compared to the first one.

Maybe Whisper would know what to do. She was smarter and braver than Carter by a longshot, she’d have better advice then Carter’s panicky mind.


Was this a slip? You only referred to Whisper as 'they' before, both in the earlier chapters and the ones I've read from later on. I've got an nb character in my novel (who used pronouns of my own making because I found 'they' a bit too hard to work with) and I often slip into calling them 'she', so I get it.

Overall Thoughts

Another good chapter! Sort of transitional, but I think we needed that after the previous one. It's good to see Carter grappling with his fears and his desperation for answers. Obviously we know that he's going to go with Gideon and Isha in some way or another, but it makes sense for him to be so wary. I think the issue of the horses should give him more pause, though. He obviously cares enormously for them, so I feel like he'd be all too aware that if he goes of gallivanting trying to find Shiloh, he wouldn't be able to look after the horses anymore. He was worried in an earlier chapter about getting sacked (I think?) and being replaced with a stable hand who would be mean to the horses, so I feel like he should be more worried about this.

From the later chapters, though, I assume they somehow find a way to take the horses with them. I wonder how that comes about.

I do think you wrote Bazzoli better in this chapter. He's still a bit of a transparent mean-guy, but he feels like more of a person here. The fact that he doesn't lose his rag makes him more intimidating, because it shows how unpredictable he can be. I think you also do well to integrate details in about him - the fact that he hates mornings, his heavy tread, him never explaining key details - that just round him out as an unpleasant but tangible person. It's good.

As mentioned in the small comments, there's some bits that can be cut out. I think you need to utilise scene changes more rather than writing out transitions between one location and another. I won't bang on about it, though. Overall, this story is just getting better and better.

Keep writing! :D
~Pan




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Fri Nov 30, 2018 4:05 pm
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elysian wrote a review...



hey babe, sorry for taking so long. let's pretend i'm not almost exactly four months late to this xD I'm always apologizing but phew, life's been a mess xD let's get into it.

**disclaimer: I will most likely focus on negative aspects more so than positive aspects when reviewing, and this is just to help you grow as a writer! It is totally okay not to agree with something I say! Also, If I repeat anything already said, it's probably because it needs to be changed!**

Why hasn’t something invented an off switch for anyone’s brain yet?


my thoughts exactly.

So, I'm in the first part and you're writing a lot about the coterie a lot, but like, we don't know what that is. Like I know I should associate it with being something bad, but I don't really care at the same time because I don't understand what it really is. I hope this is cleared up soon.

Starting to chores and letting the horses out into their respective pastures was no easier.


this doesn't make sense, "starting to chores".

i really enjoyed this chapter, I honestly don't really have anything to nitpick about it? Like I'm happy that you're showing some internal conflict with the main character, even though we all know what he will choose, it's nice to see that struggle and know that it isn't just a dramatic demand to go with them. I'm glad too see more of his boss and I'm glad that carter still got up to do his normal chores and work and didn't just drop everything, it shows his fear for his boss and that he really cares for the horses he tends to.

other than that, lovely chapter! I'm having major anxiety rn so I'm not sure if I'll be able to focus on another review, but I'll try <3 Hope your day is going good!

ily

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Mon Oct 08, 2018 10:18 pm
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Messenger wrote a review...



hey Scribbles I'm here. just about two months late xD

I really like this chapter. As has been said previously, you have a nice blend of Carter's everyday job, mixed in with his thoughts. It moves along nicely, and so even though much of this stuff seems trivial, the squeaky hinges and the clients incoming later, it never drags. Your writing style is just so flowy and beautiful and makes me jealous every time I read it. This chapter is nearly 3000 words and yet never feels long. kudos

I think you portray Carter well throughout this chapter. I loved the imagery of his thought processes. The river splitting incessantly, the idea of inventing a switch to turn of your brain (straight up need that one here at college) and then your smooth, not overly detailed transition from bed to stable. I love the setting of this story so far. The stable and the cottage both really have a natural atmosphere to them that's a great backdrop for everything going down.

I liked seeing more of Bazzoli, and just kind of the whole existence that Carter has. While it would be exciting for him to jump on board with Isha, let's be realistic: almost none of us would do that. And while we know that, still giving him a grounded job in a developed city/outskirts of Midvale makes it just that much more realistic and believable.

Again the imagery with "Buttery hues" and the apple infesting the apple are just gorgeous! I love how you smoothly snuck in how he's been subconsciously counting down, and you give us a good reason for why he's decided that he might go. No one is trustworthy, so really his only option is to possibly never see Shiloh again, orrrrrr go get answers himself.

I am wondering why Bazzoli is so important if he's such a bad boss. Like, he doesn't even know that employees are missing. And does he have other hired hands? He seems to have a decent amount of business for basically always being that drunk blacksmith from PoC xD

~Messy




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Wed Sep 12, 2018 8:50 am
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soundofmind wrote a review...



DANGGG SCRIBBLE, BACK AT IT AGAIN WITH THE RAD CHAPTERS. And thus I arrive, ready to strike again.

Game, start!

First off, yes I am so glad that there's follow-up with Bazolli and like, just acknowledgment that his job exists. Horses exist. He still does his job in the morning and is trying to get it done and he doesn't just drop all of his responsibilities haha. Not that I would've expected you not to do this lol, I think it just tickles a spot in my heart cause sometimes I've seen or read stories where the protag is just like "OH *throws sparkles* time to follow my calling!" And poof. Bye.

Also my brain keeps wanting to read Bazolli as ravioli and I only have ravioli related internet memes to blame for that.

ANYWHO.

Reese was sweet enough to nose at Carter’s face and snuff into his hair when he came into her pasture to move her, as if checking to make sure he was okay.

I love one (1) horse.

Now uh, moving on.

I guess, shoot I don't have a lot to say about this chapter, but I really enjoyed reading through Carter's thought process. I'm sad for him that he got ZERO sleep and I'm a little afraid that that'll affect his judgment as the day goes by, but it's totally understandable given, well, Carter. And his sister is missing with possible connections to some criminal... organization? I'm still not clear on what the coterie is exactly, and maybe I'm not supposed to, but I guess my clear-cut brain is like GIVE ME A DEFINITION. For which, practical me is like "you can just go to the writer's corner thread and probably find info," but reader me is like "NO!! spoilers."

I really do like how Carter kind of settled to talk to Whisper? Or at least sort of did? When it comes to big decisions like this it's always good to seek out advice from a trusted friend or mentor so I really hope he does.

Also oh my gosh, Bazolli is so extra,, just,,, waving all the fingers, slamming doors, and missing important details like Shiloh is missing. He's a very entertaining character and is fun to dislike lol. I DO wonder if he'll develop any more and if his clients are of any significance but honestly, I won't be disappointed if they aren't lol. WOULD BE COOL, but some things really just are normal and like the usual day.

Also quiet ditto just to be mindful of not letting the introspection and inner-thoughts drag out too long I guess?

But uhhh I think that's all I have for now but! Questions welcome! And onward I go.




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Mon Sep 03, 2018 7:59 pm
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BluesClues wrote a review...



Questions swirled around the hazy outlines of his mind, running like dozens of rivers splitting off into impossible waterways that had no end.


Let me just start off with saying that I really like this line.

Carter didn’t feel much of anything, except awake. He grew annoyed fairly quickly, wishing that he could just fall asleep quickly. Why hasn’t something invented an off switch for anyone’s brain yet?


BOOD

Whoa, the line after that suddenly took a very dark turn. In the meantime, holy cow I am so tired today and I keep reading on and on about how tired Carter is and it's making it worse. This was literally me this morning, not having slept enough but not being able to fall back asleep once the alarm went off.

Pony! <3

oh god everyone's sleepy in this chapter and it's making it so hard to review

Wow, Bazzoli makes me deeply uncomfortable for a variety of reasons.

So overall I think this is a pretty strong chapter. You have a nice balance of narration, description, and dialogue that kept me reading even though I got sleepier with every mention of your characters being sleepy. You also did a good job of getting Carter into his daily routine while still keeping his worries about Shiloh, Gideon, and Isha at the forefront of his thoughts - we see his daily routine without the pacing getting slowed by forgetting about his immediate concerns.

I agree with Carli, however, that the extensive thought right at the opening was a bit dull, especially this bit.

Was Shiloh really in the coterie? What if Isha and Gideon were lying? Where would Shiloh be if they were? Where would she be if they weren’t? If they were telling the truth, why would Shiloh lie? If they were, why would she be in the coterie at all?


Long lists of questions like this tend to bore me and always feel like the writer is trying to put these questions in my head more than the character actually thinking them.




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Sun Aug 26, 2018 7:35 pm
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Carlito wrote a review...



Hello again!!

I like all of the introspection we get at the beginning with Carter processing what all of this means and what he wants to do about it. You do a really nice job showing his anxiety and showing his thought processes.

Now, I get in the habit of doing this with my own work too. Be careful that you don't get in the habit of starting every chapter with a bunch of Carter's thoughts about whatever is going on and a bunch of exposition. It's totally fine to do at times and it can be a nice way to transition, get to know Carter, slow things down and allow the reader to breathe, but if it happens too much then it will start to get old. It's too early for it to be a problem yet, but I wanted to point it out so you're mindful of that as you move forward :)

Bazzoli is just soooo annoying and soooo clueless and he's so hateable I love it. I also like that Carter has such an immediate, visceral reaction whenever Bazzoli is around and it's clear that Carter is just terrified of the guy (I would be too). He's so unreasonable and I said clueless because he just didn't notice that Shiloh didn't come back yesterday? Love what you're doing so far with him.

I was confused though with the thought process at the end. Once we got to the part about him thinking about when the client is going to come and how that impacts whether or not he's going to go meet Gideon and Isha, I was confused about how all of that connected and what he actually wanted to do. I think that thought process could be a little more clear and streamlined.

And I get that he doesn't trust Gideon and Isha and he's confused by what his sister has to do with them, but he loves his sister and cares about his sister, so why wouldn't he do anything possible to figure out what's going on with his sister? I have a feeling he's going to end up meeting Gideon and Isha again, otherwise where's the plot going to go ;) And I'll be excited to see how all of this goes down!

Until then, let me know if you have any questions or if you'd like feedback about something I didn't mention! :D





cron
You are strong enough to conquer this day and the rest of your life.
— Tuckster