Young Writers Society



juan.

by waywardxwanderer


You arrive in a foreign town. The roads are sandy, and old western music plays as you swing open the door to the saloon. "Beer", you say, and the bartender quickly fills you a glass and slides it over. Before it can reach you, a hand - a something intercedes. You look closer, and it's a glove grasping your drink loosely. The glass is slowly eaten away by the liquid inside, and you realize the bartender tried to poison you. You stand, looking for the man who saved your life, but the seat is empty. You spot a dark figure by the door, a gloved hand resting atop the handle. "Wait!" you shout, and the figure startles. The glove falls, revealing a hoof. You look closer under the hood, but there is no human face there - merely the elongated muzzle of a horse. Still, you think, you owe this horse your life. "You saved me," you say. "How can I thank you?" "When you reach your final destination," says the horse in a deep baritone, "Look the devil in the eyes, and tell him Juan sent you."


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Sat Sep 03, 2022 2:56 pm
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KateHardy wrote a review...



Good Morning/Afternoon/Evening/Night(whichever one it is in your part of the world),

Hi! I'm here to leave a quick review!!

Anyway let's get right to it,

You arrive in a foreign town. The roads are sandy, and old western music plays as you swing open the door to the saloon. "Beer", you say, and the bartender quickly fills you a glass and slides it over. Before it can reach you, a hand - a something intercedes. You look closer, and it's a glove grasping your drink loosely. The glass is slowly eaten away by the liquid inside, and you realize the bartender tried to poison you. You stand, looking for the man who saved your life, but the seat is empty. You spot a dark figure by the door, a gloved hand resting atop the handle. "Wait!" you shout, and the figure startles. The glove falls, revealing a hoof. You look closer under the hood, but there is no human face there - merely the elongated muzzle of a horse. Still, you think, you owe this horse your life. "You saved me," you say. "How can I thank you?" "When you reach your final destination," says the horse in a deep baritone, "Look the devil in the eyes, and tell him Juan sent you."


Well this was certainly an interesting story. Its very short but very punchy which makes it quite perfect for the genre that it happens to be in here and I have to say this one made me read it about three times instantly by just how catchy it was here. It definitely pulls off exactly what it sets out to do here.

I love the way that you've built this up here. Its a very simple setting that still tells you a lot with the foreign town situation and the description of what seems to be a more rugged and less developed area. It sets it up quite nicely for the idea that a bartender could very feasibly be giving someone a poisoned drink, and so when that part develops it feels almost inevitable and quite natural.

Then when that very dramatic moment with the glass literally melting from the force of whatever poison used is nicely balanced out by the humor coming through with the idea that a literal horse was the one who somehow saved this person. This just all comes together beautifully with that punch line at the end which ties this whole thing up nicely and then promptly makes one fall of the chair laughing. Its very well done.

Aaaaand that's it for this one.

As always remember to take what you think was helpful and forget the rest.

Stay Safe
Harry






thanks so much for your review sjfhdj (:



KateHardy says...


You're Welcome :)



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Mon Apr 25, 2022 2:14 am
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PoetryMisfit wrote a review...



Hi WaywardxWanderer.

First off, the contrast in genres (dramatic and humorous) instantly intrigued me. I was interested to see how you melded these two genres together in your story, and I was thoroughly entertained from start to finish by it.

Though this piece is short, the obscurity in the minimal details creates a mysterious tone that makes this story all the more engaging, provoking various questions like "why did the bartender want to poison the protgaonist" or, better question "who is Juan"?

Haha that actually reminds me of the dialogue between Star Lord, Iron Man, and Drax from Avengers: Infinity War -
"I'm gonna ask you this one time, where is Gamora?" (Star Lord)
"Yeah, I'll do you one better, who is Gamora?" (Iron Man)
"I'll do YOU one better, why is Gamora?" (Drax)

Your writing style flowed very well and did a great job of immersing the reader in the story. I felt like I was placed in the position of the protganist by being directly acknowledged as the one the events were happening to.

The only thing I wanted to point out for your review is Juan's response at the end ("When you reach your final destination," says the horse in a deep baritone, "Look the devil in the eyes, and tell him Juan sent you.") I didn't quite understand that because he just saved the protagonist from dying, hence deferring their meeting with the devil. Though I can also see how the random nature of this response would be used to incorporate humor, because it was funny.

Overall this was a very fun read. I have read other pieces from you before as well and you are an incredible writer. This piece is definitely one of your best works!

Keep on writing

- Poetry Misfit






It's very rare that I write a humourous piece, so I'm never very sure of it. Thank you so much for the review!! (:



PoetryMisfit says...


Well I can definitely say that there's no reason for you to feel unsure because you employed humor very well. And you're welcome! :)



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Sat Apr 23, 2022 8:30 pm
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spatula wrote a review...



hii there! i guess i'll get back into reviewing.

so uh, i'm quite bad at reviewing humourous pieces and actually giving good feedback on the humour part of it, so just take my thoughts on that with a grain of salt. i think the rest of this has some good bones to it though, in case you'd ever want to actually expand on this seriously. for such a short bit of writing, it captures interest well.

the setting is very western, very cowboy; i love it. i think i'm drawn to settings like that the most because characters don't have the need to be perfect. you can have an outlaw with deep-seated issues that turns into some kind of anti-hero, you can have a barkeep that hates their job and does whatever to spite it, you can have a sheriff who has ?? secrets. it doesn't matter if it's historically accurate because the characters draw you in. now with that, our characters here def have those flaws. the bartender tries to poison our main character, and then there's a weird horse person thingy. it's intriguing.

then we get to wording and what actually happens in the story. the introduction is lacking i think, but i don't know if you intended that or not. "you arrive in a foreign town" could mean a plethora of things. but then, in comes the whole bar scene. there isn't really an explanation of how juan saved the main character? they just took the glass, and from there, in comes a long dialogue about "looking the devil in the eyes." i feel like there's a chunk missing between those segments of juan actually coming in.

this is super cool though! it has a very nice aesthetic to it, and the possibilities of the setting and character combination are endless. the last sentence also really scratches my brain because i live for the whole personifying the devil thing.

happy writing!
- mothbroth






dsghjsdfkg,, I think I sort of intended it to be quite nonsensical, but I may sketch in a few more details. thank you for the review!!




See the world. It's more fantastic than any dream made or paid for in factories. Ask for no guarantees, ask for no security.
— Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451