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16+ Mature Content

Love in decaying hearts: part four

by vampricone6783


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

*This is part four of my series “Love in decaying hearts”. Gacha Club character designs are on my wall. Enjoy!*

After a while, Azrail landed Melanie on the roof a long forgotten mansion, with roses overtaking the most of it.

Melanie felt pain burning in her back, bleeding from the inside. She screamed as it shot from her, spreading out.

Soon, she heard the flap of enormous, larger than life wings behind her.

“What is it? That noise behind me? Do you hear it too?” Melanie asked, for the flapping wouldn’t stop.

“It’s your wings, Melanie. You have your wings.” Azrail said gently.

Melanie calmed down, steadied her breath. She watched as her wings went down. Beautiful, black wings with red tinted at the ends, as if the ends of her wings were dipped into the liquid of rubies.

Though she wanted to spend all of eternity admiring her wings, Melanie knew that there were more pressing matters to deal with.

“What are we to do now?” Melanie asked.

“We’re going to kill Cassidy.” Azrail said.

……………………………………………………..

“Kill Cassidy? Kill Cassidy? How are we going to do that?” Melanie asked.

Azrail couldn’t even talk to Cassidy, how could he expect to kill her?

“She could be cursing other people, who knows? All I know is that I want her dead and gone, away from this Earth.” Azrail said, jumping off the roof.

“But what are we going to do against her?” Melanie asked, jumping after him. If Melanie were human, she would have feared jumping off a roof, but since she was a vampire, there was nothing to worry about.

Sure enough, she landed on the overgrown grass, right on her feet, in front of Azrail.

“We’re vampires, she’s a witch. She may know spells, but we are creatures of the night. In order for us to defeat Cassidy, we need to only right past wrongs. My wrongs.”

Azrail looked to the mansion, a deep rooted sadness in his carmine red eyes.

“This mansion was the Watson mansion back in the 1920s. There was a birthday party for Jasmine Watson, who was turning seven that day.”

“Well, she was going to be seven, until I…drained her.”

“I think she’s still here, possessing her doll. If you destroy it, you’ll free her.”

Azrail hadn’t taken his eyes off the house. It was as if some wicked magnet had attached him to it, bound him to it.

“You must have been starving. You didn’t mean to-“

“I did. I killed that child in cold blood. I wanted to hear her scream. I wanted her to be in pain. It doesn’t matter if it was in the past, it still happened.” Azrail said.

“Now, let’s go.” He said, leading the way.

……………………………………………………..

The inside of the house was just as cracked and decaying as the outside, except no roses grew. There was only ferns and bugs scuttling in the corners.

“Are you certain that she’s here?” Melanie asked. Her voice echoed in the mansion, a symphony that cascaded through the walls.

“No. But I would imagine that Jasmine haunts the thing she loved most, which, from what I saw, is her doll.”

Melanie thought of what Azrail would do if they didn’t find the doll. Would he give up? Give in to the monster within? Lose himself? How much was he judging himself, how much did he see himself as a demon?

“What if we don’t find Jasmine?” Melanie asked, voice uncertain.

“We will find Jasmine! We will!” Azrail screeched. His voice took on a high, unholy note, like that of a banshee scream. Melanie covered her ears to stop the ringing.

“I’m sorry, I just…come on.” Azrail said softly, quietly.

Just what was he hiding?

……………………………………………………..

Melanie stopped in front of an open door, which revealed a room with fading pink walls, patchwork curtains on a busted-up, wooden windowsill, scratched hardwood floors, a cracked wall mirror in the corner of the room with a brown frame, a patchwork bed framed by brown wood and…and…

A doll with short blond hair, gaping blue eyes, wearing a slightly faded pink dress, staring back at Melanie.

“Azrail.”

“Yes?” Azrail asked, joining her.

“It’s her room. I found her.” Melanie said, taking a step in her room.

Melanie turned around, for Azrail still hadn’t set foot in the room.

“She’ll be frightened of me and with good reason. You go talk to her. She’ll listen to you.”

“Azrail-“

“I’ll be waiting behind the door.”

With that, he gently closed the door shut.

……………………………………………………..

“Jasmine? Can you hear me? My name is Melanie, I’m going to help you.” Melanie said.

She tried to speak as softly and sweetly as one was supposed to speak with children, hoping that Jasmine would respond.

Nothing.

“Jasmine?” Melanie asked again.

The doll’s eyes blinked to life and then went wide with fright.

“Y-y-you have w-w-wings! Like him! Just like him. Please, oh please, don’t hurt me! I don’t want to-“

“Jasmine, I’m not going to hurt you.” Melanie said, folding her wings. She forgot they were there until Jasmine pointed them out.

“I just want to help you.”

“O-okay.” Jasmine said. She seemed to relax a little, from the way her eyes looked.

“Can you think of something nice for me? Something good?”

“I can do that.”

“Good. Tell me when you’re ready.”

Jasmine’s eyes became filled with innocent love, sweet desire, simple kindness.

“I’m ready now.” Jasmine said after some time.

Melanie nodded as she reached for Jasmine.

When the doll was in her hands, she raised high into the air and…and…

The echoing of porcelain falling to the ground, cracking away.

Nothing was in Melanie’s hands. In front of her was a little girl who looked just like the doll, except her hair was longer and her eyes were green.

On the ground were the bones of Jasmine’s former self, the prison that kept her locked away.

But in front of Melanie was a real little girl, with eyes, fingers, thoughts, and feelings.

Jasmine smiled at Melanie with all the happiness in the world before spreading angel wings and disappearing into vibrant, golden light.

Jasmine was free.


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Wed Sep 20, 2023 10:10 pm
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Ventomology wrote a review...



Heyyy!!

I'm coming into this without having read the other parts this time... I'd love to, but your list of related works is getting very long and hard to sort through. I know a lot of your work takes place in the same universe, but it may be worth doing some sorting of your YWS portfolio so all your readers have an easier time finding all the works that are actually a single piece, and will thus be able to give you more chained reviews.

Now then, onto actual business.

Something that I think will really help you going forward is to consider two things: how can you describe the way that things feel without saying "he/she/they felt," and what do people look like when they feel that way?

In this piece there are two instances that really stand out to me as places where you can work on this kind of thinking. The first is when Melanie grows her wings, and the second is when Azrail talks about killing Jasmine.

So, for the wing-growing. It seems to me like this ought to be a kind of emotional climax. In purely trope-based analysis, physical transformation is often a sign of radical change in a person's state of mind (which I assume would have happened in the previous chapter). So, as a climax, I think the growing of wings deserves a lot of time and attention. You have given it two sentences of feeling, and then a sort of "what? I'm so confused and idk what is happening to my own body" piece of dialogue (which I also... don't think serves your intent, actually).

That's why you might consider being more detailed about this feeling. Now let's consider how. Growing wings is probably a process, right? So let's break it down. It probably starts with some discomfort, as the bone and muscle necessary begin to form under the skin. You then have the breaking-free moment, which you briefly described, and then probably a little more growing and then an unfurling.

You can also break it down by all the bodily bits that would make up a pair of wings. There's bone, muscle, tendons, feathers, blood veins, new nerve endings (which I bet feel real weird), and also new skin under the feathers. What does it feel like for each of these things to be growing? How do these parts pair with the steps we established earlier?

Then, once you have a better understanding of the process of growing wings in this universe, then you will have an easier time describing what it feels like. So for example, it might read like this:

"Twin knots of pain burned in the center of Melanie's back. They grew, pulling her skin and tightening her ribcage, until, with a scream of pain, she felt the knots erupt. Blood spilled from the wounds, soaking into her now-torn clothes, but underneath all the stinging, biting hurt, Melanie felt something new. Her senses expanded to something huge and arm-like behind her, and as she reached back to assess the damage, her fingers brushed, not a gaping wound, but strong, soft feathers."

Obviously, you would have your own take on this, and what I've written is just an example, but you can kind of see how I've broken down the moment to draw it out and give it more detail, depth, and weight as is appropriate for the weight of the moment in the story.

For the other instance with Azrail:

While I do think there are a lot of occasions where we don't want to attach too much tag to a line of dialogue, the moments where people are especially emotional, where in a movie you would really rely on an actor's expression and vocal change to imbue the line with more than its pure meaning, you do want to say something about the way a person speaks.

Azrail, I assume, given the plot, has some regret about not only his actions but the way he felt as he took those actions in the past. So, when he talks about this, what does his regret look like? Does he grit his teeth as he speaks? I don't know if vampires can cry, but do the makings of angry tears well up in his eyes? Does he clench his fists, or avoid making eye contact with Melanie? These are all physical things that will show us how he feels, to add weight to a line that may need some clarification so we have your intended feelings associated with it.

Last thing: I agree with foxmaster that the phrasing for Jasmine's body as a prison is very nice. I'd love to see you do more of that kind of poetic metaphor in the future.

Hope this helps,
-Vento




vampricone6783 says...


Part three of this series: Love in decaying hearts: Part Three



vampricone6783 says...


Part two of this series: Love in decaying hearts: part two



vampricone6783 says...


Part one of this series: Love in decaying hearts: part one



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Wed Sep 20, 2023 2:03 pm
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foxmaster wrote a review...



Hi there! I'm reviewing using the YWS S'more Method today!

OOh part four, looks like we're really getting into this, now! Drama, vampirism, love, romance, death- what more could a horror fan possibly want? Now, to the review:

Top Graham Cracker - What I Know
What I know is that Melanie and Azrail are going to an abandoned mansion to free Jasmine from her doll prison, and they want to kill Cassidy, too. The mission goes easier than planned, but things won't be easy now that Melanie is a vampire.

Slightly Burnt Marshmallow - Room for Improvements
What I can tell here is that this is pretty good, apart from a few things that could be changed.

“I’m sorry, I just…come on.” Azrail said softly, quietly.

Just what was he hiding?

I found that the dialogue here in this little snippet seemed slightly unnecessary to me, and it didn't really seem like it really needed to be there.
Also, it seemed to me that the spacing in this (the looong dot things) seemed also unnecessary, and it seemed to break up this story, making it kind of disjointed.

Chocolate Bar - Highlights of the Piece
On the ground were the bones of Jasmine’s former self, the prison that kept her locked away.

I especially liked the phrasing in this, the way you described what was on the floor the bones of her old self
I absolutely loved that sentence, good job! 👏

Closing Graham Cracker - Closing Thoughts
Once again, an amazing continuation to this story, and other than those few things, this was really good, and this wasn't just mostly dialogue.
happy writing,
-Foxmaster





"Come quickly, I am drinking the stars!"
— Dom Pérignon