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Saelis
07-05-2005, 10:18
...She awoke, clutching the sheets tangled around her, like the things in her dreams, the monstrous beasts that trapped her in their vicelike grasp. The night breeze was strangely warm, brushing over her clammy forehead, it offered no comfort for her raging fever. Damn the bonfires up north, she thought.

The heavy wooden door creaked open, and a white-robed figure stood quietly, carrying a basin of water. Jayden.

"You screamed?" the monk spoke, in a low, melodious tone. Saelis nodded. The fear was replaced by frustration, and she thumped her fist on the wall next to her bed in annoyance.

"God damn it. Only children wake up screaming from nightmares!" she exclaimed, feeling foolish and vulnerable.

"Hush." Jayden was at her side in an instant, dipping a linen cloth in the cool water, wringing it and holding it to Saelis' forehead.

"I can do that myself, Jayden," Saelis forced a laugh, easing the cloth out of Jayden's fingers. The monk smiled gently, and stood up.

"Good then. It's nearly morning. I'll have to tend to my duties soon," she said, heading for the door. She paused as she opened, turning around to fix her pale, watery blue eyes on Saelis once again. "If you need some company, or someone to talk to.. I'll always be here."

The door shut behind her, and Saelis was left alone once again. The sun peeked its golden mane over the horizon, and shone through the window into the room. Saelis lay back on the bed, dropping the damp linen cloth into the basin. A few hours of sleep would do her good. Dreamless sleep, hopefully.

Saelis
07-05-2005, 11:19
The extra sleep had been well deserved. Saelis felt much better, and the fatigue that had plagued her the past couple of days was gone. The house was empty, and she decided to take a long walk.

There was nothing she could remember. All that she knew was that she had been rescued by Jayden, when her town was besieged by the evil known as the Charr. She was one of the few survivors, of her town, the rest had been killed when it was burnt to the ground. When she had awoken in this place, all she could remember was the fires, and the beasts that had trapped her, then left her to die. The only thing she had of her past was a ring, set with a red stone. From whom she had gotten it, she had no idea. A blow to her head had made her lose her memory.

The monks had been assigned to take care of each of the survivors, and she was under the care of Jayden.. Soft, gentle Jayden, who was only four years older than she was, yet had a wisdom beyond her years.

This house was modest, without frills, just like Jayden herself, and the monks in her circle. Their houses, in a row, were sanctuaries for the sick and wounded, and Jayden obviously took great pride in her skills in healing.

Saelis wanted to see if anyone else she knew was saved, but there was nothing much she could do, short of barging into the other monks' houses and demanding to see the other survivors from her village.

The hustle and bustle. She drew some curious looks, but otherwise the townsfolk did not bother her. She realised she did look rather strange walking around barefoot, in an off-white monk's robe, looking nothing like a monk. A dashing young man setting up shop under a tent grinned at her roguishly.

"Any clothes for you, my lady? You could try them on right here if you like," he called out, winking. She laughed and paused to admire the clothes had had put out on display.

"Are you a ranger?" he asked, studying her. She looked up at him, frowning slightly. Was she? She couldn't remember.. He held out a longbow, the light coloured wood had been stained a dusky blue.

"Try this."

She held it, feeling its weight in her hand. Saelis didn't realise the people around her had gone rather silent, as she drew back the bowstring and let go, surprised that she knew how to hold it, how to fire it.

I must be a ranger after all, she thought. The bow felt right, somehow.. She turned back to the youth, who handed her an arrow and gestured towards a battered old leather target sign mounted on a wooden post, which had been put up to tests bows.

Fixing her eyes on it, she pulled the string back, arrow in hand this time, and let it fly. A chorus of murmurs filled her ears as the arrow hit it dead centre. The youth whistled in awe.

"You ARE a ranger!" he exclaimed. Saelis managed a weak grin, now conscious of the townsfolk around her, who were watching her, after that display.

"How much for the bow?" she asked, trying to hide her surprise. The youth smiled.

"For you, my lady.. A kiss will do." He grinned.

She was about to say something when a hand fell on her arm. The touch was strangely familiar, yet she had no time to think about it as she was turned around to face a tall, tanned man.

"Saelis," he breathed. Her eyes widened in shock at the handsome stranger, and she was suddenly caught in a tight embrace. She pushed him away quickly.

"Who are you?" she demanded, her cheeks flushed. His green eyes flashed with shock, confusion and pain.

"You.. you don't remember?" he asked. She shook her head, curious. Taking her free hand, he led her away. Still holding the bow, Saelis looked back at the youth, who blew her a kiss.

"You can pay me another day, my lady!" he called.

The man led her to a quiet spot near the monk's houses, then turned to face her.

"We can stop now. Who are you?" she asked. The mysterious stranger looked sadly at her, his eyes rimmed with tears.

"My name is Calin. You and I.. Back in Ashenvale. We were engaged to be married."

Saelis
07-05-2005, 16:21
She gripped the bow tightly.

"What do you mean, married?" she asked, rather stupidly, instantly regretting the question.

Calin sighed, looking away.

"It must have been some blow to your memory, if you can't remember what married means, Sael."

She sighed.

"I'm sorry. I don't remember you... Or anyone, for that matter, she said sadly.

He took the bow out of her hands, gazing at it for a long time.

"We were rangers.. In Ashenvale. When the Charr struck.. I was wounded trying to save my family.. They died.. You and I got separated.. I thought you were gone too," he said, his voice choking slightly.

"How'd you get here?"

"I ran.. Or rather, limped," he answered, his lips curving up in a smile, "I tried to look for you, but I found a whole bunch of Charr warriors and had to sprint with my leg wound all the way here, where the monks warded them off.. And healed me. That was a week ago," he paused, "I never thought I'd see you again."

"Well, I'm right here," Saelis replied, rather speechless by the whole absurdity of it.

"I guess you losing your memory is better than you being dead." Calin said flatly, handing the bow back to her. Her fingers brushed his, and she wished she could remember, this man she had once been in love with, who was now just a stranger to her.

They stood in silence for a moment, till she cleared her throat.

"So, where will you be heading now?" she asked, trying to sound nonchalant. He seemed to brighten at the question.

"I'm going hunting. Marksmanship training."

"Oh."

"Well.. Would you like to come along?" He smiled.

Returning the smile, she nodded eagerly. She wanted to see just how good a ranger she had been.

Saelis
11-05-2005, 09:58
"Your technical abilities are good.. just that your concentration and magical ability leave much to be desired, at times." Calin commented.

"Aren't you a tactful one?" Saelis shot back, rolling her eyes.

"I just said your technical abilities were good!"

"Never mind." Saelis answered, executing a perfect dual shot.

"See! Now, why can't you do that with seeing the wind?"

"There are certain skills I can't do perfectly right now, what with the loss of my memory and all." Calin fell silent at that, as Saelis began lighting the archery field using her newly-acquired skill of flaming her arrows.

"Now, isn't that pretty," she mused. Calin suppressed a chuckle. Apparently the loss of her memory hadn't destroyed her high spirits, he thought thankfully.

RevenantsKnight
19-05-2005, 00:35
A disclaimer before I start: I haven’t played, or even seen, the Guild Wars game, so if I ask stupid questions pertaining to the plot/mechanics/classes/whatever, that’s why. Apologies in advance for any of these.

And with that out of the way, I’d say that this is a decent read, as a story. I think you’ve got a good hold on the essentials with an interesting, if somewhat common, starting plot and adequate grammar and spelling overall. However, there are a few instances that seem a bit light on the details; in general, it couldn’t hurt to add in some more description every now and then. Also, there are a few points that sound rather dry and matter-of-fact; while they tend to be clear, they also don’t do the best job of creating a world that the reader can get into. Some specific comments on your first two posts:


...She awoke, clutching the sheets tangled around her, like the things in her dreams, the monstrous beasts that trapped her in their vicelike grasp.

I’d suggest removing the comma after “her”; grammatically, you could do without it, and the separation of “sheets” from the things to which they’re being compared (the grasp of the “beasts”) confused me for several reads. A side note: I don’t think you need the ellipsis (“...”) at the start of this sentence.


The night breeze was strangely warm, brushing over her clammy forehead, it offered no comfort for her raging fever.

The comma after “forehead” should be a semicolon, as you could replace it with a period and the parts before and after could each stand as complete sentences on their own.


The heavy wooden door creaked open, and a white-robed figure stood quietly, carrying a basin of water.

This confused me on the first read; while I assume that you’re trying to indicate a relationship between the door opening and Jayden’s appearance, it didn’t read that way at first because “stood quietly” makes it sound as if there was a “white-robed figure” in the room who stood up when the door opened. I’d word this more as “The heavy wooden door creaked open, revealing a white-robed figure carrying a basin of water.”


The fear was replaced by frustration, and she thumped her fist on the wall next to her bed in annoyance.

I’d change the start to “Her fear,” as “The fear” implies a general sensation, not what Saelis is feeling.


"I can do that myself, Jayden," Saelis forced a laugh, easing the cloth out of Jayden's fingers.

I think the comma after “Jayden” should be a period, as “forced a laugh” isn’t quite the same as, say, “said.” If you wanted to keep this as one sentence, one possibility would be to reword this as “...Saelis said, forcing a laugh and easing...”


She paused as she opened, turning around to fix her pale, watery blue eyes on Saelis once again.

That should be “opened the door,” I think.


"If you need some company, or someone to talk to.. I'll always be here."

An ellipsis is three, not two, periods in a row. There’re some other instances where you do this; I suggest a quick find and replace to fix this.


The sun peeked its golden mane over the horizon, and shone through the window into the room.

Grammatically, this should be “The sun’s golden mane peeked over the horizon...” though what you have now might work from a stylistic point of view. I can’t say whether it’d be better to change it or leave it as is.


Saelis felt much better, and the fatigue that had plagued her the past couple of days was gone.

That should be “over the past couple of days”; omitting “over” is something that happens in spoken English, but that construction shouldn’t really be used in a narration.


The house was empty, and she decided to take a long walk.

While it’s not necessary, it might be good to spend some more time here with Saelis looking around the house, so that you can work in a bit more description. Granted, the house is probably not too important to the plot, but if you draw a vivid image of it for the reader, then hopefully he or she will be more drawn into the story as a whole.


All that she knew was that she had been rescued by Jayden, when her town was besieged by the evil known as the Charr.

This might feel more natural if Saelis went through what she remembered of her past, sort of thinking to herself, and these details came out in the process, as opposed to in straight, matter-of-fact narration.


She was one of the few survivors, of her town, the rest had been killed when it was burnt to the ground.

This seemed mostly redundant, considering what you say before and after this sentence. I’d just leave it at “She was one of the few survivors,” assuming you keep this as a narration.


When she had awoken in this place, all she could remember was the fires, and the beasts that had trapped her, then left her to die.

That should be “all she could remember were...” since she remembers multiple things.


The only thing she had of her past was a ring, set with a red stone.

I’m assuming that this will be important later. If that is the case, then it’d be a good idea to describe it some more, so it sticks in the reader’s memory. Otherwise, if you bring it up again, the reader might not have a clue about what it is.


A blow to her head had made her lose her memory.

Again, this is a bit dry, though it does get the reason for her state across.


The monks had been assigned to take care of each of the survivors, and she was under the care of Jayden.. Soft, gentle Jayden, who was only four years older than she was, yet had a wisdom beyond her years.

Not sure what you were trying to do here with the double period...if it was supposed to be an ellipsis, then “soft” shouldn’t be capitalized.


Their houses, in a row, were sanctuaries for the sick and wounded, and Jayden obviously took great pride in her skills in healing.

Hrm...the connection between the houses and Jayden’s pride in healing isn’t really clear to me. You might want to revise this sentence again.


The hustle and bustle.

This needs more description, especially considering the preceding sentences. Personally, I’d say this is way too abrupt of a jump, moving into this directly from the part on the other survivors to the town. Also, this doesn’t say much about the town itself; it could seem busy because there’re a lot of merchants, or farmers, or soldiers marching through. All three of these have distinctly different suggestions.


"Are you a ranger?" he asked, studying her.

I haven’t a clue why he thought this. Maybe the reason isn’t too important, but it felt like you were just throwing this in to move the plot along. Even if that is the point here, I’d suggest describing what made him think that she was a ranger. Perhaps he sees something in the way she moves or holds herself, or maybe his attention’s drawn to some mark or tattoo. Either way, it’d be a good idea to give the reader something as a focus for the idea of Saelis as a ranger.


She looked up at him, frowning slightly. Was she? She couldn't remember.. He held out a longbow, the light coloured wood had been stained a dusky blue.

A general note: a lot of your sentences begin with a subject-verb conjugation, such as “She looked up” here. Now, this construction isn’t bad in and of itself, but if you repeat it too often, your story starts to sound a little monotonous. It couldn’t hurt to vary your sentence structure once or twice per paragraph, depending on the length. For instance, you could change the first sentence to read “Frowning slightly, she looked up at him.”

Some grammar points: the comma after “longbow” should be a semicolon, since the phrases before and after it could each be a complete sentence on their own (they have their own subject, verb, etc.) If you want to keep this as one sentence, you could also reword the second bit as “...the light colored wood stained a dusky blue.”


Saelis didn't realise the people around her had gone rather silent, as she drew back the bowstring and let go, surprised that she knew how to hold it, how to fire it.

About archery: one doesn’t “fire” a bow; one “shoots” a bow. The verb “to fire” as a means of describing projectile weaponry didn’t appear until the advent of guns, and in general it’s not the term used for a bow and arrow. Secondly, never pull back and release a bow’s string without a nocked arrow; the force of the string snapping back into place will go directly into the shaft and can break the weapon. Saelis could, though, pull back the string, hold it for a moment, and then ease it back into its resting state.


She turned back to the youth, who handed her an arrow and gestured towards a battered old leather target sign mounted on a wooden post, which had been put up to tests bows.

That should be “to test bows.”


Fixing her eyes on it, she pulled the string back, arrow in hand this time, and let it fly.

Grammatically, the “it” in “let it fly” refers to the bowstring, not the arrow. You’ll probably just have to say “arrow” or “missile” or something.


A chorus of murmurs filled her ears as the arrow hit it dead centre.

Again, your pronoun reference is a little confusing; “hit it dead centre” makes it sound as if the arrow hit the string. I get that you meant the target here, but it’s not clear from a grammatical perspective.


Saelis managed a weak grin, now conscious of the townsfolk around her, who were watching her, after that display.

The comma after “watching her” is unnecessary and should be removed.


"Back in Ashenvale."

Hrm...maybe I’m just being stupid, but isn’t Ashenvale something out of Warcraft III? Is it actually a Guild Wars location? If not, I’d suggest using something else, since I’m pretty sure it’s a Warcraft place, and crossing over between games tends not to work too well; each game has elements of its universe that just don’t agree with other games’ worlds.

Anyway, looks like you’ve got a good base for a story; with some extra details and such, this could pull the reader in a bit more, but this seems to be a solid start. Thanks for posting!

Nikells
23-05-2005, 03:07
I enjoyed it and hope to see more.
I'm not gonna go into great grammatical detail like the last poster but heres a few general comments...

Firstly, I very much liked the initial exchanges between the main character and the kindly monk. The playful reaction Saelis had to Jayden mopping her brow was a nice introduction to her character and the character of Jayden also. It immediately let us know that Saelis is a fiercely independent, strong willed character but also one with a sense of humour.

A story revolving around a blow to the head and amnesia is a little cliché but I'm willing to go with it regardless.
However a lot of the mystery and intrigued that naturally comes with that type of story arc was immediately broken when you introduced Saelis' fiancé who obviously is going to know everything about her.

Also, I agree with RevenantsKnight when they suggested some extra description thrown in. Its easier to get pulled into a world when its described in detail: even describing objects and places that aren't going to play a huge part in the story can benefit it overall.
The room the story begins in could definitely receive the descriptive treatment. This initial description will not only be telling us about the location in which the story begins but also the world its based in.

Saelis
25-05-2005, 08:56
Wow that's a long post. I'll edit my post when I have the time. I can't always proofread when I'm in a hurry, and I tend to overlook some details.

In the case of ellipses, I tend to type 2 periods instead of 3. It's a habit I developed during phone text messaging, so as to save space. Will try to curb that habit where writing is concerned. Thanks for pointing it out.

I do realise that my stories tend to go by rather quickly, due to the lack of description, heh. Thanks again, for reminding me. I'll try to improve it soon.

:)