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Adonia, Beloved / Chapter 1

by LittleFox

The small blade fell from Rahim's hand with a clatter, though he barely heard the sound. With a flash of panic he realized that there was blood on his hand and suppressed the sick feeling that swelled up in his stomach. It was a small amount, only painting the tips of his fingers, but it was her blood.

Adonia stood hunched over in front of him with her long hair falling over her shoulders and shadowing her face. Rahim's eyes focused on where her hand clutched at her side, blood oozing between her fingers from the gash. He staggered back in horror as fear and anguish rushed through him.

She let out a ragged breath as she lifted her gaze to meet his. "Rahim?" Her pale green eyes bored into him like teeth into raw flesh.

He winced at the pain and disbelief in her voice. "Adonia, I never meant to-"

"Get out." Her eyes were closed now. Beads of sweat rested on her face and arms, reflecting the light of lanterns.

Rahim gaped at her, searching for words, but there were none he could say to her now. Not after this. The thought that she might die- at his hand- flashed through his mind. As fear pierced his bones his limbs began to tremble.

When Adonia faltered Rahim moved forward toward her, but she caught her balance on a small table just as he reached her. She shoved him away with her elbow as an ornate vase fell from the table and hit the polished floor with a crash. "Now!" she hissed.

He wanted to throw himself at her feet, but the fierce look in her eyes chased him from the room.

He ran from the chambers they had shared as quickly as his feet would carry him, praying harder then he had ever before that it was all only an awful dream. Promising that if he woke up he would shower Adonia in kisses and tell her he would never hurt her.

Rahim couldn't even remember drawing the small blade. He had held Adonia in his arms only moments before, his fingers playing lightly at the ends oh her long hair. Then, she had began to speak to him of politics and of what it had like to be the Sovereign of Nivahl.

They both had been raised in the outer palace among the Chosen, children brought up and taught as potential Sovereigns of the future. All his childhood Rahim had dreamed, and believed, that when the time came the Elders would coronate him as Sovereign and Adonia would have been his loving and supporting wife, proud that her husband had been chosen to lead her country.

But when the Elders made their announcement and called out Adonia's name, Rahim had been knocked off balance. He remembered bitterly that she had had little interest in becoming Sovereign. While he and the other students studied and competed to impress their teachers, Adonia preferred to ride horses or swim in the river. But when she stepped forward to receive the blessing of the previous Sovereign, a man well aged by that time, she stepped forward with the calm serenity of a leader. Love and jealousy sprang up unanimously in Rahim's heart as he watched her climb the marble steps from where he keeled among his peers. His fellow rejected. As time went on his jealousy ebbed past his love and began to saturate every nerve, vein and muscle in his body and before he realized what he was doing, the knife had already tasted her skin.

The halls of the inner palace were empty aside from Rahim, but he forced himself slow to a walk in fear of rousing suspicion from the guards as he approached the palace doors. They were painted bright red and decorated with the golden shapes of birds and flowers. The two guards that stood vigil before them eyed Rahim with concern.

"Master Rahim," one said, "it is late. Is something wrong?"

"No," he answered breathlessly. "I just need some fresh air. I'm not feeling well." He ignored their questioning looks and passed through the doors with all the calmness he could gather, though his hands still shook.

Once outside he resumed running. Through the dark he found his way to the palace stables. He slowed as he entered, wary of the stable-hand sleeping in the loft above, and crept past the stalls. When he came to the one that belonged to his horse he stretched out an unsteady hand through the dark. When his fingertips met Agrah's shoulder, the horse gave a start, then a soft nicker as he recognized his master's scent.

Rahim flinched as shouts rang out from the palace and the stable hand began to stir. They would be looking for him now, and there was little time to waste. He slipped a bridle over Agrah's head and unlatched the stall with shaky hands. Not bothering with a saddle he scrabbled onto the grey stallion's back and dug his heels into his flanks.

He pushed Agrah harder than he ever had before, weaving through the buildings and high walls of the city. He did not allow Agrah to slow until they were well clear of the densely packed buildings and Agrah's neck was speckled with lather. Twisting in his seat, Rahim watched the dark night behind him, searching for any sign of pursuit. The shouts had long since faded as did his fear, leaving behind only suffocating sorrow. He leaned forward and patted the grey stallion's sweat-soak neck with an exhausted sigh. They would still have a long way to travel before they could stop to rest.

As the moon rose higher into the sky and Agrah trudged on through the dry landscape, Rahim's thoughts began to fester. In the black night all he could see were her eyes staring at him. Sorrowful at first, then, accusing him. Hating him. It was all too much.

For a moment he didn't know whether to laugh or sob, all his emotions seemed to swarm and contort togther. He dragged his fingertips across his face wearily. This can't be real.

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639 Reviews

Points: 13700
Reviews: 639

Sat Mar 07, 2015 12:03 pm
SpiritedWolfe wrote a review...

Hey, LittleFox!

I recall reading one of your works in the past, and I must say, your writing is just as beautiful as I remember it! ^^ Save more praise for later, but I've merely skimmed over the other reviews, so forgive me if I repeat anything.

Throughout this, there seems to be a point when some things get layered on to us, and it's nice that you backtrack from the beginning a little bit to give us some perspective on what had just happened. Yet, there starts to come to this point in which the tension you built from the beginning with Rahin stabbing Adonia. As the Sovergn comes into play, I can't help but feel there would be a better place for it later on while things start to calm down a lot more.

Of course it makes sense that things would go by a lot faster since Rahim is in a lot of a panic, but there are some points that I think could be extended out a little bit to show us more about Rahim, how he thinks, how he works. Such as while he's riding th horse. There's a perfect moment to start mauling things over, like where he's going to go and how he's going to run.

One thing that I don't think was established very well was the time of day in the beginning versus at the end. From the way everything was, I had allowed myself to assume that it was morning, and the end it had transistion to night already. However, things span so quickly, I'm not so sure that that's the case. Perhaps try to establish this more as things that Rahim briefly notices as he comes out. Perhaps he looks at the sun and thinks about where he can go, where he has enough time to go.

Everything here seems really spur of the moment, which is nice, but I don't think the maids would be so easily convinced that everything is fine and dandy, because panicking is not that easy to cover up, even if you're just walking. They may have noticed his heavy breathing, or even just the look of horror in his eyes, hidden in his thoughts.

Otherwise, this was really interesting. The writing had a nice flow to it, and perhaps if you snuck some extra descriptions in there (maybe even just what color Adonia's hair is) it'll be even better.

Keep on Writing,

LittleFox says...

Thank you for your help, I appreciate it :D

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260 Reviews

Points: 15020
Reviews: 260

Sun Feb 22, 2015 3:47 am
TriSARAHtops wrote a review...

I thought I'd drop by and give this a review, seeing as I was following the original draft of it. It's been a bit long since reading the older version for me to be able to really compare the two to see how you've improved this, so I'm going from memory, and also looking at how this stands up as if I'd never read it before.

I remember feeling that the previous version of this felt a bit sparse on details, and I do think that you have improved on this in the first part of the chapter. I'm still finding the part where Rahim is running from the castle far too rushed - maybe there was a minor improvement, but it's still something that needs work.

I found the bit where he was laughing to be a little bit weird... I think if you build on it, it could be effective (show he's in shock, feeling a bit unstable, etc), but as it is it feels out of place and bizarre.

The formatting is a bit weird, and I'm not sure if it was intentional, however the gaps between paragraphs were rather distracting.

I'm still feeling like this story has a lot of potential, that just needs to be built up, and even though I don't really see any major changes here, you're still heading in the right direction. I think you could include a little more emotion to it, add to the drama, because what's there is teasingly good - it just isn't developed enough.

See you at the next chapter! :)


LittleFox says...

Thanks a bunch! I will give it some more work :)

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9 Reviews

Points: 254
Reviews: 9

Sat Feb 21, 2015 7:05 pm
sunflowerr wrote a review...

i am now officially hooked on your story, and will eagerly await the next installment. just a couple things, however. i know that you learn more about the setting and characters over time, but i feel as though i just didn't get enough background information to really start liking them. what do these characters look like? how did rahim grow to love adonia? what are the responsibilities of a sovereign? where is this country located, and what is it like? if you ground these facts into the story's mold in the beginning, the reader will understand the future events more clearly and interpret hints in the plot.

now, description of emotions. i felt that the chapter lacked an in-depth description of how these things felt. instead of "as fear and anguish rushed through him" you could use "as a chilling combination of fear and anguish rolled over him like the waves in the sea". metaphors and similes help enforce the reader's understanding of how it would be like to experience this.

overall, it was great! keep up the awesome work.

LittleFox says...

Thanks a bunch :) I'll try to add some more descriptions

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122 Reviews

Points: 2321
Reviews: 122

Wed Feb 18, 2015 8:37 pm
ccwritingrainbow wrote a review...

Keep the paragraphs closer together unless there is a setting change.

"...with a clatter though he barely noticed the sound. With a flash of panic, he realized that there was blood on his hand and suppressed..."

"to her now, not after this."

"As fear pierced his bones, his limbs began to tremble."

"an awful dream, promising that if he woke up, he would shower Adonia in kisses and tell her he would never hurt her."

"...of politics, of what it had like to be the Sovereign of Nivahl."

"All his childhood, Rahim had dreamed, and believed, that when the time came, the Elders would coronate him as Sovereign, and Adonia would have been his loving and supporting wife..."

"However, when the Elders made their announcement..."

Delete the but in "But when she stepped forward..."

"As time went on, his jealousy ebbed past his love and began to saturate every nerve vein and muscle in his body..."

"When he came to the one that belonged to his horse, he stretched out an unsteady hand through the dark."

"In the black night, all he could see were her eyes staring at him."

"...accusing him, hating him."

"Suddenly, he was shaken by laughter until he nearly fell from Agrah's back. When he readjusted himself, he was somber once more..."

Then, the period is missing after grimly.

LittleFox says...


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346 Reviews

Points: 37216
Reviews: 346

Wed Feb 18, 2015 3:45 pm
Pretzelstick wrote a review...

Heya pretzelsing here for a review again,

You wanted me to review this story so here I am. In this quote:

The small blade fell from Rahim's hand with a clatter, though he barely noticed the sound.

I don't think that noticed is the right word to put here, remember that word choice is very important. Noticed is more like when he saw something happening. I think that you could substitute it with this word: heard.

Here is a problem because the second sentence is a fragment:

Then, she had began to speak to him of politics. Of what it had like to be the Sovereign of Nivahl.

I would just add an and here to make this one sentence.

Here is a very cliche sentence:

They both had been raised in the outer palace among the Chosen, children brought up and taught as potential Sovereigns of the future.

I really don't like this storybook cliche. Consider this: "Characters can be special without being touched by the hand of fate. And anyway, if your character is the only person who can solve a given problem, does that make him/her heroic? Or just easily coerced? They have no choice but to be heroic, and that's not really heroism." I got this from this link(it's a quote but I thought that it is necessary to be placed here-these are not my own words though ;) )

When Rahim is walking past the guards through of the palace,shouldn't he be more nervous?Maybe act nervous? Maybe you could show us by making him bite his fingernail, shake and shudder, have a catch to his step, etc. I would be nervous.Also how would he react to the shouts? You really only told us that he quickened his pace with saddling the horse-bareback.What were his thoughts/feelings at that time-maybe sad, regretful, frightened, scared, ashamed? You are the author and so you know this character better than I do :D

When did he feel safe?Where to be more exact?Outside the city,the town, the country? If I were writing this story I wouldn't make Rahim feel safe until he was out of the county, because it is very unrealistic to feel safe so close to the palace, where the guards are looking for you.

I was wondering if based on this quote, is Rahim insane?Do you want him to appear that way to the readers because right now he appears like this to me:

Suddenly he was shaken by laughter until he nearly fell from Agrah's back.

He just stabbed his wife,the Sovereign and he is laughing?What? :shock: This isn't a normal or realistic reaction and I would probably just delete this whole laughing thing idea.

Also your ending could have been more epic if you crossed out the last three words:

This can't be real,he thought grimly.

We know that he is thinking this because it is italicized, so the "he thought grimly" isn't really necessary here because it lessens the impact of the cliffhanger of thoughts.I would just cut that out :)

Well I hope that this review helps and that you keep on writing as always.Please please please ping me or PM me when the next installment of this novel comes out.Thanks :D!


LittleFox says...

Thank you so much :D

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Points: 330
Reviews: 22

Wed Feb 18, 2015 2:48 pm
elitemaster030 wrote a review...

Right, first of all I love you. This story is captivating, it draws you in and I really want to read more.
This story is short and sweet, but yet it is perfect for an introductory chapter to a longer story. It engages the reader directly by introducing conflict between Rahim and Adonia. You obviously know where you want to go with this story and it is reflected through your work effectively.

There is nothing bad I can really say about this piece as in my personal opinion it is very good. Just remember the tone you are using. Some writers find it difficult to remain in a formal tone and sometimes jump into an informal etc.

I wish you the best of luck and please, I am begging you, keep writing

LittleFox says...

Thank you so much! <3

Love is so short, forgetting is so long.
— Pablo Neruda