I really like the "of course it works that way" attitude of the writing. It'd be a great encounter in a slightly tongue-in-cheek game, too. And... how did they get there? About half way into their journey, wouldn't they be "scaling the cliff" of the part of the world that's perpendicular to their normal environment? So many possibilities for strange fun. Go to Comment
There is a market for items and materials from the other side of the world. Since a pound of mass from the other side cancels a pound from our side, a skilled craftsman can build remarkable items combining wood, or stone, ingots of iron or steel, or other raw materials from both sides. Just imagine the possibilities, such as:
A sword or other weapon weighing nothing but still possessing the mass a proper weapon needs.
A sturdy pack which cancels the weight of items placed within.
A perfectly balanced arrow which fires further because gravity doesn't pull at it as strongly,
Heavy iron boots which make the wearer lighter on his feet. Go to Comment
I'll say right up front there WERE too many weird words for me, but that's a matter of taste and preference and doesn't detract from the quality of the sub.
This is a really good piece. For me, the best thing about it is the way it looks at Dwarves and looks at a major fundamental difference between them and humans. So many works fail in this respect, and you find yourself reading or watching short, grumpy, bearded humans instead of dwarves. They just don't get into the headspace of these alien beings. But works like this this help make dwarves more... real.
I'd love to see more pieces like this which help explore these differences.
On the technical side, it's very well written. Nicely detailed, well crafted and utterly worthy. Go to Comment
Novel? Not with this. These are scenes narrated from my game world, in which Sarah is a favorite NPC. She's been a cosmic power and a helpless hostage and several things in between. Lately she's been working as a Barista. :)
Thanks for the feedback. Maybe there's a better way to put the second escape to show my intent better. Hunter flees before she even learns what her new people will do. She never felt like she deserved this second chance and when she saw the soldiers come, she couldn't take the chance. So she fled, and she will continue to flee for as long as she lives unless something changes. Go to Comment
PA, thanks for this. This is the sort of feedback I look for. Of course I like it when people say "5/5 HoH Would Buy Again" but only if there's really no real room for improvement. Let's look at your issues and see if there's a way to clarify or better convey some of these elements...
The Vine doesn't have a sub, but the Five Orders of Ivory Tower do have a piece which links to this one. It discusses the ruling class of the Desert Realms, the tattoo-bearing Five Orders.
Hunter's relationship with the tattoo artist was not meant to be vague. The turn of phrase was meant to say or suggest he tattooed her everywhere, without bing too vulgar about it. He touched her in places where only a lover should... but it was all so he could complete his work. Their relationship began and ended at the tip of his needle. Er.... tattooing implement. :P
"My serious problem is that I never felt any of that strongly in her backstory, or even that certain events of her backstory would lead her to that who she is now."
How can we better convey that?
"Her story of unrepentantly killing the young boy does not lead me to believe that that she knows what it means to die."
At this point in the tale, 13 year old Hunter certainly does NOT know what it means to die. She's been trained since she could walk to fight, to confront opponents, and to kill them. This part of the tale is meant to demonstrate she took her lessons perhaps too much to heart. She's confronted with her first true enemy, and performs exactly as she's been taught, killing a larger, physically stronger foe. I imagine her somewhat confused by the reactions of the adults who seem to think she did something wrong instead of giving her honor for her accomplishment.
"Her spitting on her lords corpse does not lead me to believe that she is filled with guilt and simply too cowardly to do the honorable thing and kill herself."
Okay, I can see that. There's two things at work here I can maybe do a better job of conveying. She doesn't feel guilt initially, and never feels it for the crime. He attacked her, she defended herself, she won, he lost, end of story. She felt disgust because he did a disgusting thing. To be fair here, I might be letting my own feelings color the matter. But either way, she doesn't feel bad for the act in and of itself.
However, she DOES have a lifetime of societal indoctrination which says her worth lays in service to her lord, That tells her she's disgraced herself and the only right thing to do is kill herself. But the warrior part says "he attacked you and that's what happens to people to attack you. screw that guy." She doesn't WANT to die, but all this in her head tells her she SHOULD, that she DESERVES it. So she flees.
Any guilt she feels at this point is over her family and even town, who will now share in her disgrace. They will suffer because she didn't do the 'right' thing.
"The result feels disjointed; she has 5 major scenery shifts,"
From village to temple to service to her lord is no more significant a shift than, say, a modern character growing up, going to school, and getting a job. However
at the point she flees, she makes her way to the forbidden gate in a desperate bid to escape, which does lead to the largest scenery shift. This is originally an Everway NPC, and in that game major scenery shifts are commonplace as characters bounce from one world to the next.
This isn't super important to the character, though, save to explain how she ends up with the Orders. In a non-worldhopping game she could as easily be found riddled with arrows by a passing group of them who take her home and tend her wounds. But this accounts for what I see as the only truly major scenery shift, because the game itself is about major scenery shifts. :)
"a major occupation shift - assassin and warrior skillsets are very different -"
The intent here is to find a use for her skills which still lets her remain on her own and move around a lot. I don't see hired killer being that different from warrior in the broad strokes. She's not the black-clad, backstabbing, poison-in-your-sleep sort of assassin. She usually breaks their necks. Or just walks up to them and attacks. The important thing I want to convey is by this point she still doesn't really value life. She kills, just like she's always been taught, and she uses that to earn a living. She could be a mercenary, but I thought that would be less prone to leaving her as a lone wanderer.
"and the shift in personality between who we have seen and who you have told us she is."
On this one, I need help. Who have you seen? I've tried to be consistent here. She's largely the same person at the end, but still living with the weight of her past, telling her she should be dead, and her warrior training and instinct, telling her she should survive at all costs. How can I better demonstrate that? Go to Comment
I'd planned to put up some NPC subs, but I've been working on a sub for Sarah for WAY too long. I'm thinking I might bag the NPC write-ups and instead introduce the characters through more fiction. Go to Comment
In the Elder Scrolls games, giving a beggar a coin gives you a blessing and a feeling of well being. What if this feeling... were addictive? What if the reward for your first show of generosity wore off, leaving you feeling hollow and out of sorts? How much would you give to feel that well being again? Go to Comment