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Found 18 results

  1. I'm writing a story about an angel who falls to Earth after a fierce week-long battle with a demon, and is found by a journalist on a dusty road in New Mexico on his way to chase down a story. She has no memory of her angelic existence and the young reporter takes her home (after keep watch over her in the hospital). As it turns out, she was his guardian angel in childhood. The angel lives as a human, unaware of her true identity and they fall in love. A tragedy caused by an argument between Jacob (the reporter) and a long-time rival since high school causes her to remember fully (she does have glimpses and memories in the form of nightmares and flashbacks, but these aren't enough to make her remember--it only confuses her). Eventually, her wings grow back, and with her memory fully restored, she must go back to Heaven to complete her angelic duties. How should I end it? Should I have Jacob stand on the rooftop of their apartment as he watches Anna/Iofiel return to Heaven? Or should I have him drive on the same old New Mexico dirt road where they first met, watching her as she flies (with a single white feather falling from one of her wings and landing on the passenger seat next to him)?
  2. I have been toying with the idea of getting the program Scrivener, for my novel writing. I, however, am not willing to put out $40 USD for something that I won't be satisfied with. So what I'm hoping is that there is someone here who has used the program and can give me some incite to whether it is worth the money to get the program?
  3. I’m writing a story about a group of childhood friends who grow apart and go their separate ways. Two of them move to Styria in Austria, three of them to San Francisco, and only one of them is left in the small town they grew up in in Vermont. Some years later, they find themselves reuniting in NYC. How shocked would be a Vermonter be upon arriving in the city by the bay for the very first time in his or her life?
  4. It has been what feels like several years since I visited Help.com...or as it is now, Helptogo. Im back because every night for roughly two weeks, I have had the same story stuck in my head, crystal clear, and I desperately need to get it out onto paper. Im stalled, however, in the last names of my main characters. I have their first names perfected, but I am stumped on what to call their family. I am looking for a Latin word (a very important feature), that is similar to guardian, protector, protection, safety, or something similar. The hardest part of this is Im trying to find one that sounds very english/american/white. Most that I have found that make decent last names, sound distinctly Latin american (Duh). Any ideas folks?
  5. So the cast of my upcoming story on Wattpad is now coming together. Kiernan Shipka and Chord Overstreet as the twins, Samuel and Sabrina, and Vincent d'Onofrio as their adoptive father. Question: Does Elyes Gabel look like he could be Vincent d'Onofrio's nephew?
  6. What do you guys think of this? (I'm writing the beginnings of what seems to be a spy novel.) The view from the train window was exquisite. The evening sky was aglow with strokes of pink, red, and orange. It was hard to believe that what one was looking at was indeed the sky and not paint on a canvas. Pine trees seemed to sprint as the train ran past them. Samuel Shepherd was awed. The interior of the train’s dining car was just as beautiful, decorated like a Parisian restaurant. On both sides of the car hung works of Jean-Honoré Fragonard and other Rococo artists. The ceiling depicted putti playing in the clouds. You could almost hear their childlike laughter. With how dangerous his occupation was, moments like these were golden. He made sure to take the time to stop and smell the roses. Any minute could be his last. Such was the life of an MI6 agent. He was a Double-O, just like his hero before him, the legendary Agent Bond—007. He was currently on a deadly mission along with CIA Agent Esther Simpson, in a joint-effort between MI6, CIA, and Interpol. Their task: to protect Secretary General Aleksandr Ivanov—and to determine who was behind all this, who was after him, who wanted him dead. This was Simpson’s last mission. She had just accepted her long-time boyfriend’s proposal and wanted to settle down already. She was retiring to live a peaceful life with the man she loved and raise a family with him. That man wasn’t Samuel Shepherd. Shepherd and Simpson had grown up together in London and were childhood sweethearts. She was the niece and ward of U.S. Ambassador Lucius Simpson. They met when they were eight. She was new at school and he had to lend her his textbook and an extra pen. A friendship blossomed from that encounter, which then turned into love. Esther Anne Marie Simpson was Samuel Shepherd’s Annabel Lee. He always said that he loved her with a love that was more than love. Agent Simpson interrupted Shepherd’s thoughts by asking, “What are you staring at?†“You,†Samuel said with the slightest hint of a smile. “You look as lovely as you did on your sixteenth birthday. You’ve never changed.†“People change, Shepherd,†Esther retorted. “Nothing stays the same forever. You of all people should know that.†“As the old saying goes,†Ivanov interjected, “You cannot step into the same rrriver twice.†“Yes, of course,†Samuel said, suddenly cold. “Now, back to the mission at hand—†Agent Shepherd, however, was interrupted by the waiter coming to their table to collect their plates and to offer them some complimentary desserts and cups of coffee or more red wine. “I vill have...a...tiramisu,†the secretary general said. “And a cup of coffee.†“And for you sir?†the waiter asked Samuel. “Let me try your...spotted dick,†the agent answered. “Typical British,†Esther muttered, with a chuckle and a shake of her head. “Madame?†the waiter asked. “I’ll have a blueberry cheesecake, thank you,†she replied. “Very well,†the waiter said, taking the dessert menu from their hands. “Will that be all?†“Coffee all around,†Samuel said. “And another bottle of pinot noir. Thank you; that would be all.†“I’ll return with your order, then,†the waiter said. “So! The two of you have, uh, known each other since when?†Ivanov asked when the waiter had gone. “We met when we were eight,†Samuel said. “She was the prettiest girl I ever saw in my life.†“Now she’s a beautiful woman,†Ivanov offered. Esther blushed. It was true. She was beautiful. With her pale skin, black dress, and long, silky raven locks, she looked positively ethereal. Almost like an elf, or perhaps a vampire. “Oh, don’t let her beauty fool you, Mr. Secretary General,†Samuel teased. “Behind all that beauty is a sharp mind that can get you out of any scrape. And she’s also a killing machine.†“Why do you think they chose me for this mission?†Esther said with a smile. “I’m the best asset the CIA’s got.†“One thing, though, Mr. Secretary General,†Samuel said. “She’s arrogant.†“Oh, I’m sure all young agents are,†Ivanov said, nodding. “Excuse me,†Samuel said, standing up. “I need to use the W.C.†Samuel Shepherd silently crept towards the train’s kitchens, his right hand in the inner pocket of his dinner jacket, his fingers curled around the grip of his concealed weapon. Slowly, he pushed open one of the double doors, peeking inside. “Do your job well,†an unknown man was saying in his native Russian. “Chernobog is counting on us. Have you determined it was Ivanov?†“I have,†the other answered. “Good,†the older, taller man said. “Good. Come, come. Don’t look so distressed. We plot nothing here.†He could not see the older Russian spy’s face, but Samuel Shepherd was sure of the second, younger one. He was not Russian—but he spoke with a convincing accent. It was the waiter who had served them. To take them out right now would have been a waste of time and energy—time he could spend in creeping back to the dining car and warning the secretary general. Besides, there were too many innocent bystanders. He would have to find another way to expose or take out this Russian mobster’s underlings. So he went back to his seat at their table and loosened his grip on his pistol. “Ah, my friend!†Ivanov greeted cheerily. “Agent Simpson has just been regaling me with tales from your childhood.†“Not embarrassing ones, I hope?†Samuel said, taking his seat and casting a glance at his fellow spy. “Very embarrassing, I’m afraid,†Esther teased. “Well! Just in time! Here comes dessert.†“Blueberry cheesecake for the lovely lady in black,†the waiter said, handing Esther her plate. “Spotted dick for the posh British gentleman over here... And... For you sir, a plate of our specialty tiramisu! Enjoy your dessert. I’ll be back with your coffee and pinot noir.†“Hold on a minute now,†Samuel said, raising a hand. “Would you care to try it? Show my friend here how good it tastes.†“Sir, I can’t do that,†the waiter tried to reason. “I could get fired. That’s against our policy, sir.†With lightning-quick reflexes, Samuel Shepherd had his Walther PPK out and leveled at the minion’s thigh under the table. “You will take a bite of that cake or I swear by bloody Caesar, I will end you.†Shepherd was done playing games. Simpson raised her eyebrow as if to say, What the hell do you think you’re doing? With shaking hands, Chernobog's spy reached for the plate and the fork, cutting a piece off the cake. The moment his tongue came in contact with the poisoned cake, the young man’s limbs went rigid as though struck by some invisible electric current. Then he fell to the floor of the car, flopping like a fish out of water, foam bubbling from his mouth and making gurgling noises coming from his throat. People shrieked, Simpson gasped, covering her mouth, and Ivanov crossed himself.
  7. I'm writing a story about friends who vow to always be there for each other. Four boys and four girls. At our school, there's this dance called Fall Thing and it happens around October/November. It's like prom but it's costumed and themed. I want to incorporate that into my story. One of them asks a crush out and gets rejected. All seven of his friends rush to the rescue and suggest they go to the dance as a group. The theme for that year happens to be "International Travel". One of the friends suggests they represent France. What's a good costume idea for a group? D'Artagnan and the three musketeers + 18th century wenches? Or modern French socialites? And what do they wear if they're going to go as socialites?
  8. I've ran into a bit of a problem in my writing process. How many streets does a small town usually have? Anyone know? I never grew up in a small town but wish I did.
  9. So before the last climactic battle in my story "Once More Unto the Breach", the men are discouraged and dejected (some even fearful). And their CO asks James (my main character) if he knows Shakespeare, to which he replies in the affirmative. He is then ordered to recite a monologue from Henry V to encourage his brothers-in-arms. Question: Which monologue should I make him say? Henry's "band of brothers" speech or his "greyhounds in the slips" speech (where the title of my story comes from)?
  10. I've been told that no professional writer uses the ampersand in his or her essay's title. But what about for a class project/homework? Can I use the ampersand or not? I've seen some of my classmates use it and the professors were fine with it. No deduction, no notes, no instructions to make changes, nothing. They even maintained their A's and B's. It had no effect on their grades. Should I use it or not? I'm not sure if I can and should.
  11. On the day set for the company to venture forth, Tobran rose from his bed before first light to offer up prayers to Iarus, seeking his blessing on their quest, as he had done for the past nine and thirty days. He asked Iarus to show him the way and asked for the strength to carry out this most sacred of tasks—that of saving his own people. He had refused to see Cristin, believing she might distract him and destroy his concentration. The brave shepherd was under intense preparations and he could not risk being swayed from it—not even by Cristin’s divine beauty. The sun was well up in the sky when Tobran finished his prayers and he was made aware of the clashing of swords. Rising from a kneeling position, he went out of his tent to see his Cristin and the young Prince Ronan engaged in mock combat, testing each other’s skills. Sweat glistened on Prince Ronan’s forehead and Cristin’s hair was plastered with sweat to hers as they continued their duel. “You fight like a girl, fair prince,†Cristin teased with a laugh as she blocked each of Ronan’s blows. Ronan threw his head back and laughed, its music sailing through the morning air. “Aren’t you a girl, my lady?†Ronan said with a smirk then a laugh. “There is a world of difference between a woman and a girl, young Ronan,†Cristin replied in kind. Ronan laughed, enjoying both the swordfight and the teasing banter between them. They were fast becoming friends. The match ended with a victorious Cristin, sweaty and out of breath. She had her sword pointed at Ronan’s heaving chest. The prince was sprawled on the ground, empty-handed, sword flung faraway from him, Cristin’s sandaled foot on his stomach. “What was it you were saying, Your Highness?†Cristin said with a smile and a triumphant gleam in her eyes. “I was saying you are a worthy opponent,†Ronan said, smiling up at her. “My thanks, fair prince,†Cristin said, offering her hand for the young prince to take. She pulled him up to his feet and he dusted himself off. King Tristan emerged from his tent and announced, “Take your breakfast! The company leaves in an hour!†“I must be off to bathe myself, then,†Cristin said, heading for the lake. A hooded man robed in black suddenly appeared, standing beside the shepherd. How he came there, or where he came from, no one knew. He noticed Tobran watching Cristin like a hawk. “She is beautiful, is she not?†the mysterious man said, a smile on his lips. “Why not take her?†As Cristin stood on the shore of the lake, she undid a knot on her left hip. After having loosened the material, she unclasped the brooches on her shoulders, first the right, then the left. Pushing the robe off her shoulders, she let it fall from her body and onto the ground, revealing her nakedness. Cristin’s robe pooled around her at her feet and she stepped out towards the lake. “Take her,†came the suggestion once more. “After all, you are a prince. You have the blood of the Old Kings in your veins. You can do as you please. No man stops you. Who knows? It may be long before you can have her. There will be no time on your journey. Why not have her now? Pleasure and passion are essential to life! It will strengthen you, keep you fresh and young! Alive!†“I have no room for pleasure, nor do I need it!†Tobran countered, drawing his sword and pointing it at his tempter’s throat. “The only pleasure I will allow myself is the pleasure of doing Iarus’ bidding. Nothing else matters!†Slowly, everything around him melted away like snow in the spring. The camp vanished. No more were the majestic colored tents of the kings and their generals and knights. His own tent was gone. The lake, and Cristin with it, was gone. Trees and rocks were now nowhere to be seen, no dew-kissed grass. Horses and men had disappeared. There was no sun, nor sky, nor clouds, nor chirping birds. Tobran whirled round, pointing his sword in every direction. Where was he? He was in Merodach’s palace, far away from his friends, from his wise old mentor, and from the woman he loved. “Come,†Merodach said, smiling, revealing rows of filed, sharp teeth. “Your new empire awaits you.†The sorcerer took the shepherd into a chamber containing nothing but a large-mouthed well in the center of it. It almost filled the room. From this well emanated roiling mist like that seen early on a cold morning. Merodach brushed the thick cloud away from the mouth of the well with his hand to reveal crystal clear water within it. This was no ordinary well, however, and these waters were no ordinary waters. With it, Merodach showed Tobran cities and kingdoms, including those even beyond the Nine Isles. “I offer you all this and more if you serve me instead of Iarus and your king,†Merodach said, his red serpentine tongue slithering between his cold froglike lips. “Forsake your people and their god and you will have all this. Swear. Bow to me. Pledge your allegiance to me!†“I serve only Iarus and his helper Nooma, my people, and my king!†the shepherd bellowed with a power that made even the great and terrible Merodach shake. “I bow to Iarus alone!†A flash of brilliant white light shone around them, and suddenly, Tobran found himself in the highest tower of Castle Kels, looking down on the servants and soldiers going about their business. “Go on,†Tobran’s enemy said. “Go! Call on your...Iarus. We shall see if he answers your plea! Isn’t it said of him that he will send you his messengers to keep you safe? You won’t even hurt your feet!†“Begone!†Tobran shouted. “Iarus is not a man that he should be trifled with, nor is he a pupil to be tested!†Merodach gave a loud, chilling laugh as the one he had given when he briefed King Shagah regarding their plans. The sound of his laughter died, carried by the wind, and then he was no more. Not a trace of him could be found. Tobran fell weakly to his knees and breathed heavily, his forehead damp with icy sweat and his eyes streaming with tears. If it was a test to prove his strength and his worth as the savior of Kels, he had passed. “My Lord Tobran!†Sir Drinian shouted, noticing the shepherd kneeling on the ground. Rushing to his side, the good knight raised him to his feet. “My lord!†Prince Ronan exclaimed. “Are you alright?†“I am well, thank you,†Tobran said with a smile, shaking his head. “There’s no need to fuss over me.†“Come!†Sir Drinian said, slapping the young shepherd on the back. “A feast awaits us! And then we ride! We leave in an hour.†* * * * * The feast consisted of roasted lamb, bread, eggs, fruits, pies, a deer on the spit, hot mead, and fresh cold water from the stream that fed the lake. Sir Dorian played his lute and sang as was his wont and the king’s sons spouted out jokes one after the other. Laughter rang through the whole long low table. “To wives and sweethearts!†Sir Drinian said, raising his goblet high. “To wives and sweethearts!†the company gathered at table echoed, raising their goblets. “May they never meet!†Prince Godfrey added, keeping his in the air. The knights laughed, raising theirs. “Today is another peaceful day,†King Tristan noted. “How many days have passed since the last attack?†the king’s brother-in-law asked. “Forty days,†Tristan replied. “Forty days of peace,†King Oweyn, nodded. “It seems as though there were no war to begin with.†“Indeed,†King Tristan returned. But all knew that there was war. And there was evil, if the dark clouds on the horizon were any indication. The enemy was closing in. Unless they closed in on him first. And this is where Tobran came in. Forty days of peace. But for the poor young shepherd, it had been forty days of turmoil and struggle. His thoughts were on those nights and early mornings spent in seeking Iarus’ strength, when Lucian rose to speak. “And now,†Lucian began. “The time has come for the man the gods have chosen to take this bitter cup I hold in my hand and to drink it.†It was wine made from the fermented juice of the jilail, a rare grapevine that produced a bitter sort of grapes. This wine was used mostly in poisons and sleeping draughts. When taken in small quantities, it was safe and used in sleeping draughts. Too much, and it became a poison. The jilail had many uses. If a woman desired to be barren in order to spite her husband out of hate, she would gather jilail roots and crush them to a fine powder, sprinkling it in her food or drink. Its effects were the same on a man. The man unfortunate enough to ingest the powdered roots would grow infertile. Its bark was used in divination. If a lazy child did not wish to learn his lessons for the day, all he had to do was to take a single leaf of the jilail and chew it. This would induce a high burning fever and he would be prescribed bed rest by the village doctor. But today, its purpose was to determine whether the hero of Kels had passed his test. “Iarus spake to me in a vision last night,†the seer continued. “He gave a sign. If the man to whom I give this chalice endures its bitter contents and lives, then he is the man chosen by Iarus and Nooma to save all of Kels and her allies. But if not, then we will know he is not the man.†After saying this, Lucian handed the cup to Tobran. The shepherd’s hands quaked as he received it, but only for a short while. He took a deep breath and calmed himself, his body taking on the rigidity that accompanies determination. He was resolute. He raised the cup to his lips and drank deep, the bitterness of the wine stinging his lips, tongue, and throat. A fire coursed through his bowels, down to the pit of his stomach. Still, he emptied the cup, draining it of its last dregs. He raised the empty cup in the air and the knights, kings, counselors, and princes held their breaths to see if Tobran would fall down dead. The poison usually worked quickly, taking effect within a minute of consumption. When five full minutes had passed without nothing happening to its drinker, those gathered at the table raised their cups and hailed their hero. Cristin breathed a sigh of relief. “He has passed his test!†Lucian shouted in triumph, taking Tobran’s hand and raising it in the air. Truly, this lowly shepherd was meant to be their deliverer. “Long live Lord Tobran!†the princes Rodrick and Owen shouted as one. “Long live Lord Tobran!†came the reply from the company. They were of one voice. “Long live Lord Tobran!†“I shall write you a song, m’lord,†Sir Dorian said. “I shall call it...Tobran of the Empty Cup!†“And we shall all sing it to our dying day,†Prince Ronan pronounced. “And so will generations after us.†“Long live Lord Tobran!†they shouted once more. “Long live Lord Tobran! Long live Lord Tobran!†“May all of Kels from now until the end of the world remember this day!†Prince Godfrey. After they had finished their breakfast and the table had been cleared, each member of the traveling company retired to their tents to prepare for the journey ahead of them.
  12. I've had this idea for a long time now. I'm a huge fan of Bram Stoker, just as a majority of people are huge fans of Arthur Conan Doyle (they were acquainted with each other, if I recall correctly). I've always loved vampires, specifically Count Dracula. And I grew up on Disney, and my favorite movie was "Beauty & the Beast." And I'm also a fan of Audrey Niffeneger and I loved "The Time Traveler's Wife." So I thought I'd combine all my three favorites and put elements of those in my story. The story starts with a young girl playing in the gardens of her grandfather's large estate. Having just died, her dad inherits the house and the estate, and so they move in. But she goes beyond the gardens and explores the surrounding wooded areas, where she stumbles upon a cottage. There, she meets a pale "strange man." It so happens that the vampire hasn't had any blood in awhile and is rather thirsty. He attempts to feed on the girl, attacking her, and she runs out of the cottage and back to the house. She's thinking of not going back there again, but then she thinks that he might just be a lonely, grumpy guy who needs friends--that's why he acted that way. At the same time, something inside the vampire snaps and he thinks even though he has been turned into a cold-hearted, soulless monster, he doesn't have to be--and he can't feed on an innocent girl. The following day, she goes back to the cottage and the vampire tries very hard to fight it--and he does. From then, a beautiful friendship blossoms and the vampire tries to change his ways, feeding only on livestock and other animals. Every day after school, the girl visits him, and as she grows, so does their friendship. And the vampire is now a completely different person. He falls in love with her when she reaches her junior year of high school. She has been in love with him since she can remember. Their relationship continues to grow and finally, he proposes and she accepts. They marry. They live happily for a long time, but the vampire doesn't want to turn her for fear she might lose her soul--he couldn't bear that. And so she remains mortal, he remains immortal. Until finally, old age and death takes over and she dies. Without her, two things happen: he returns to his old ways of feeding on humans, and he has lost the will to live. One day, a group of vampire hunters spot him and he does not fight. He no longer wants to live. The last name on his lips is the name of his love Some people are actually dissuading me because "it sounds too much like Twilight." Which isn't. 1. He changes her (Beauty & the Beast) 2. They've known each other since she was young (The Time Traveler's Wife) 3. He loses the will to live when she's gone (Beauty & the Beast--remember when Beast says "It doesn't matter now, just let them come"?) Where's Twilight there?
  13. The logic that concludes it possible, is erroneous. The argument between functional and non-functional becomes cyclical and in my opinion it, one way or the other, predicatively cannot continue indefinitely.
  14. So i'm feeling a bit "meh" about things and so thought it would be a good idea to write a random poem,rap or song on the spot instead of taking time, hopefully this should unveil raw emotion which is lost over a period of time waiting. This is just an experiment thing so if it isn't very good please don't hate to badly. Time: 18:34 Taking some time with the things I write Seems like just a further waste of life So while im going down in a straight dive Im gonna go through some of the things im feeling tonight. Just sitting here, it sucks being by yourself I mean come on this cant possibly be good for my mental health It seems like im stuck in solitude and the moment I socialise Everything I do just gets assumed to be rude and my emotions further get bruised. Do I care what people think about me? Hell, can cyber sex give you STD's? If you thought yes then your sadly mistaken it doesnt take that long for my rage to awaken A church guy would say I need to be pressed down and shaken Huh, thats works for the good but im purely forsaken. Im heading one way, and it aint up being torn by this fake love And yet people compare me to a plain dove. I mean yeah thats my outside complexion But inside im corrupt, whats with the never ending questions? (18:42) "Why do you never seem to go out" Well, why do you have such a big mouth. Because while your out getting wasted Contorted with alcohol and drugs you know, that sh*t you call fun. Lets see where that gets you in the long run. Why do I feel hated everywhere I go, I mean is it really that bad being emotional? Oh yeah theres one thing I forgot to mention. Before you say it, I dont care about attention. Because I like being alone but I cant stand being lonely. I would go out and meet people but I kinda need someone to show me. Being a bit anti social hits me hard because no-one gets to know me. And the ones who do, think im slowly going insane Because every single day im in some sort of pain. Its sad because im the only one to blame Doing it to myself, yeah I deserve the shame. Im just trying to get better, I keep writing tons and tons of letters to my family asking for support Still aint got any knocks at my door. Huh, This is what it feels like being abandoned. Guess that sums it up, that's enough of this tangent. (18:50) Well that probably made no sense and im not going to proof read it because editing would still count as using more time on it. So thats what I wrote, hope when I read it back it makes some sense, maybe you guys would like to try something like this yourself, I dont know. ~Ranea.
  15. One of my friends who has been dealing with depression for two years wrote this. She brought this to the clinic one day and I was shocked. I have censored the curse words lol. This a little verse so ima keep it short- I aint done no crimes, i aint ever been to court- so why does it feel like im servin time- treated like dirt when i havent even had to pay a fine- its just the way life goes you see,- aint no f***ing happy ending for me unfortunately- I hear em whisperin, pointin and laughin at me- "shes the girl who takes s*** so dramatically"- I got one thing to say, you aint lived my life.- you havent had to have a best friend that was a f***ing knife- I told all my secrets to that knife, knowin they would be safe- kinda hoping 1 day it would lead me to my grave- But im better now i was saved my life was paved- So now i walk across it tryna hold my head high- although when i reach the other side my head bows and i cry- And its f***ed up because i dont even know why- I get those thoughts with the knife and just wavin bye bye- Cuz inside im broken, ive lived my life unspoken- But now im showin, that i aint done growing- And so you know a little more about a broken girl- who locked herself away from the world- You cant see her tears but you can see through her eyes- all the pain, the love that was just lies in disguise- But yeah thats me and this storys just begun- And thats about it, so peace out, and im done.- I personally found this amazing. What do you guys think? ~Ranea
  16. Here's a story I wrote based on the ideas of my clients. They decided on a Fantasy, action, adventure story. Its quite lengthy but they liked it so far. The distant sound of screaming brought Achilles slowly to his senses. He painfully rose onto his feet only to fall back onto one knee as the pain overcame him. “Damned Dranions†he grumbled. A sound from behind him caused him to turn. He paused, looking at his surroundings. Trees he thought. Not really an uncommon thing in the Rainforests of Eastern Dranion. He inspected the bandage on his leg, now coated in blood, his blood. If you could call it that. His blood was not of the crimson red like most of his race, it was of darkened violet. The essence of evil, he had been called as a child. Doomed to bring destruction to his home town Freinza. He recalled the time when a lamb went missing from the towns livestock, everyone had blamed him. And he was thrown in the Dark pit before he had a chance to defend himself. The dark pit. His second home. It was the place they placed trouble makers of the town. Thieves, murderers and whores all of the sort. It had become the haven for the criminal world. In some distant time in the past, the old criminals had dug secret tunnels and caverns in the hole. Here he had learned quite a few skills that had been useful to him through his life. Lock picking, Bribery, the correct way to strangle a person without making any noise. And many more unique skills. But what use is that to me now. He thought, I am a man of 25 winters with only a damaged leg and a broken sword to show for it. He gently touched the broken sword hilt he carried on a length of string around his neck. It has belonged to his father, and had been passed down throughout countless generations. Originally forged from metals of the land where the first ancestors had made their town. “Hail encampment!†a voice behind him called. He spun round to see a man dressed in crimson armour with a silver cape. The armour looked to be fashioned out of steel. Rich man, Achilles thought. “Hail stranger†Achilles called. “Can I help you with anythingâ€? The man didn’t seem to notice that Achilles had spoken. “That’s a nasty leg wound you have their friend how did you come by it?†the man said sympathetically, almost mockingly. “I fell from a tree I was sleeping in one night, my leg got in the way of a jutting branch and well†he gestured to his leg “you can see the outcomeâ€. The man seemed to accept this and nodded but then his eyes transfixed onto the injury. Achilles suddenly became aware of the darkened blood on the bandage and moved his leg into the surrounding tall grass. “You are of the Freinza... yet your blood is like water and oil combined.†Achilles inched closer to the surrounding grass, speaking calmly “I am just a weary traveller; you have no reason to involve yourself with meâ€. The man reached into the bag he carried and Achilles made his move, grabbing an overhanging branch he swung into the foliage, automatically tensing his muscles and checking himself in case he cried out because of the pain that lanced through his leg. Achilles could hear the man slowly creeping around, speaking like a mother trying to get her child to go to the doctors. “Now now you have no need to be scared of me, by your description I would say you are Achilles, there is a high price for your head, but maybe I will achieve a bonus if I bring you back aliveâ€. Achilles grabbed hold of the piece of string around his neck; it was of good quality and would not break easily. Achilles scrambled silently up a nearby tree and threw a branch down into the bush at the base of the tree. The man slowly crept over to the bush and with surprising speed reaching both hands into the leaves with the same movement as a hawk striking a rabbit. Achilles dropped from the tree like a ghostly wraith. Landing on the man’s shoulders and looping the man’s neck with the string, Achilles heaved and pulled, the man toppled onto his back but Achilles held on. The man squirmed for a few minutes but after a while went still, Achilles kept the string tight for another quarter of an hour before finally easing his grip and rising to his feet. The dead man’s face was black from suffocation. Achilles stripped the man of his armour, the man was roughly the same size as Achilles and the armour fit perfectly. He managed to locate the man’s travel bag and rummaged inside. A sword, a bow and some rope where the first things Achilles found. He slid the sword into the scabbard still attached to the dead man’s armour. He slung the bow across his back and secured it with the piece of rope. Achilles emptied the rest of the supplies on the floor. A map with a red circle surrounding a certain area of rainforest. And a flint and tinder. Achilles guessed the circled area was the place he was in. He placed all of the supplies back in the bag and attached it to the rope on his back. Realisation struck him instantly. That man had not randomly stumbled into him, that was certain. Also why didn’t the man carry any food with him. Somehow the man expected to find and capture him in a short period of time. What if he was part of a larger group located near him. He slung the bag on the ground and scrambled frantically for the map. He looked at the dotted line showing the trail to his camp sight and followed it backwards until it suddenly stopped on a place called Raven Camp. Achilles peered through the bushes at the camp. He had used the positions of the sun to head east. It was about two hours till dawn. He had travelled from around mid-day with his leg slowly recovering. There were five tents altogether with one of them flying the banner of the Dranion Alliance. Achilles decided to search that one first. Limping silently over, he drew his sword in case anyone inside may instantly recognise him. He crouched and entered the tent. There where banners everywhere, each one showing the symbol of Dranion. Behind a small curtain at the end of the tent came light snores. At the same end of the tent was a chest, Achilles snuck over and eased open the lid. Inside was a small pouch and a kite shield. Achilles placed the pouch into his traveling bag and put his arm into the shields straps, it was not heavy and he was able to still move the arm freely. The end of the shield knocked the lid of the chest and the lid shut with a loud thud. The snoring from behind the curtain stopped suddenly and a voice called “who goes thereâ€, after no answer the curtain slid back and a man stepped out. The man was superbly muscled and his skin was bronze, in his hand balanced a golden sword and his eyes narrowed in the darkness, “Agrippa is that you? Did you get him?†With his last burst of strength Achilles darted forward with the speed of a lightning bolt and clamped his hand over the man’s mouth and thrust his sword into the back of the man’s head. The man died with a slight groan but then all was silent apart from the slight dripping of blood on the floor. Achilles held the man upright for another minute to make sure there was no disturbance and then gently lay him back on his bed in which he pulled a blanket over the man and stepped quietly out of the tent. He then ran back through the forest until he found a small cave jutting out from a rock. Making sure nothing was inside he lay down and slept. “He’s got to be around here somewhere!†Achilles woke with a start. The sun was up and he heard the steps of soldiers clumsily crashing through the forest. He peeked out of the cave. There where soldiers everywhere, literally dozens! Did they bring a whole myriad he thought. “maybe he’s in here!†a nearby soldier shouted. He’s close thought Achilles, to close. A shadow showed in the caves entrance and Achilles backed against the edge of the cave and slowly edged round when suddenly his back went through some vines on the wall and he fell backwards. He sat up silently and looked around. The place stank of decay. Obviously a bear must have come here during the winter and made a den for itself. “ I swear I heard something “ a soldier said. “ You fool can’t you see there’s nothing here!†a deep voice boomed. Achilles heard the soldier mumble something as the two men left the cave. Achilles waited and at some point, fell asleep. Four days after the soldiers left the cave Achilles came to the dunes, he had been traveling nonstop from sunrise to sundown. He had found a pear and apple tree next to a small spring and drank and ate. With his strength restored and his spirits renewed he had set off. Loading his travellers’ bag with a suitable amount of the fruit. Now he stood before a small coastline with dunes spread across the sand. He trod carefully, the sun baked sand scorching under his feet, he walked closer to the coast and stepped in the shallows of the glistening turquoise sea. Achilles stared out to the horizon. Feeling the essence of nature and spray from the sea, a great calm overcame Achilles and he sat down and rested back on the sand. Then he spotted something, near the end of the coast a wooden planked bobbed up and down. Achilles stood up quickly and walked over cautiously. The limp in his leg almost un recognizable. “Come on you vile worthless pieces of filth hurry up and fix this ship, and do a good job because you’ll be the slaves of err soon!†Achilles peered round the rocks cautiously and his eyes went wide. He saw a group of men holding swords, each one wore a red bandanna and a brass earing. There where the remains of houses on the back of the cliff. Some still had smoke pouring from them. On the coastline was a small ship. The picture of a skull with a snake coming out of its eyes hung from the mast. Pirates thought Achilles. In front of the group of pirates was a small cluster of people. All bound and gagged. Mainly women and children. Peering closely at the ship he saw bruised and beaten looking men fixing a hole in the front of the hull. One of the women who was gagged saw Achilles and he gestured for her to stay silent and not to look at him. He then slowly made his way towards the group of pirates, there where around fifteen of them altogether. Far too many to take alone thought Achilles. A young boy maybe fifteen years of age saw Achilles and gestured for him to cut his bonds without the pirates seeing. Achilles took a drastic course of action. Charging forward he pierced a pirate though the throat. Cutting the boys bonds and chucking him the dead pirate’s cutlass. The boy went at the pirates with a flame born of desperation in his eyes, he cut one pirate down and copying Achilles took the dead pirates cutlass and sheered another young man’s bonds. The men repairing the ship ceased what they were doing and seeing that the pirates where faltering charged at them. The pirates were dispatched before they had a chance to understand what was happening. One of the bound women had been killed by a stray thrust from a pirate. But apart from that there were no losses. The sun was shining, the seagulls called and the sea was calm. “She’s almost seaworthy again sir!†boomed a nearby worker. Achilles smiled, it was five months since the raid of the pirates and the townsfolk had been very grateful for his help. They had given him his own home among the ruins and made him leader of the town. Achilles had immediately went to work on repairing the ship that the pirates had left behind. The ship had been badly damaged by hitting a large rock out at sea. The townsfolk had agreed to assist Achilles in repairing the ship. They had retrieved some tough white willow wood that was strong and flexible and would not snap during the high winds. In the end Achilles had decided to turn the whole ship into a willow craft. And now the last finishing touches where being made. The craftsmen where filling in the gaps of the willow with a strange tar. Claiming it would keep the hull waterproof and keep everything stuck together. Achilles nodded to a hooded man who stood next to a large gong and the man swung a heavy baton made of iron. The gong erupted in a crash and all the townsfolk came to stand in front of the small stage which the gong was set on. When the last person arrived Achilles held up his hands for silence. When silence came he spoke out in a loud voice “today my friends is the day we have been waiting for!, after all these months the ship has been repaired and I am ready to set sail across the sea to northern Dranion in which I will rise an army and conquer that is ours!, those who wish to accompany me raise your weapons!â€. A loud cheer erupted from the crowd and over 20 people raises there weapons. They varied from middle aged men to daring housewives and even some children eager for adventure. Achilles called to them “ the ship has been stocked with enough supplies to keep us for the journey and now my friends, we sail!†He dashed towards the gangplank that led up to the ship with the chosen townsfolk whooping and laughing as they all boarded the ship. Instantly they crowded round the sides to wave to their loved ones who they were going to leave behind. The ship turned slowly and drifted out to the northern horizon. Leaving a happy and peaceful settlement behind it. “All hands on deck!â€. Achilles woke to the shouts of men and the crash of metal against metal raging outside his cabin. He opened the door of the cabin to see a man come charging through with his sword outstretched, Achilles ducked swiftly and grabbing his shield that was hung the wall, smashed the man in the nose, stunning him. Achilles quickly put on his armour and attached his shield to his arm. He took a few moments to study the man who lay stunned on the floor. He wore a bright blue bandana and two silver earrings. Achilles realized these looked very similar to the raiders that had attacked the small town on the coastline. Stepping outside he dealt a man a blow with the shield and in the same movement piercing another through the throat with his sword. “Rally to me!†Achilles boomed over the sounds of the melee. Eighteen of the townsfolk fought their way to his side. About four must have been killed, thought Achilles. A large object flew by overhead and Achilles wheeled to see another ship. Larger than the one he owned. Drifting closely by. A single cannon pointed directly at him. Achilles felt anger flare up inside of him. He rushed blindly at the cluster of forty pirates in front of him. Hacking left and right with his sword , beating down people mercilessly with his shield he fought like a demon from hell. The pirates retreated a short distance, shocked by the surprise assault, Achilles had left twenty of them on the deck either dead or dying. Suddenly he found he was in the midst of people running past him, dashing headlong at the pirates. With a mighty roar Achilles ran with them and the last twenty pirates were dispatched off. Achilles assessed the number of warriors he had left. He counted ten men, four women and two young adults. Another two people had been lost in the charge. Turning swiftly he jumped onto the rigging and climbed the mast. Swinging from an overhanging rope he launched over the railings and fell onto the deck of the other ship. He signalled for the others not to follow him and he turned to see over two hundred pirates massed on the deck. Grabbing a spare piece of planking he struck it against the corner of his scabbard, a few sparks where sent flying then the planking set alight in Achilles hand. Running past the pirates he ran up the barrel of the cannon ,kicked it so the barrel was facing the other way. Lit the fuse with the torch and leapt over the rails into the sea. The Pirates masses around the sides. Not noticing that the fuse to the cannon had been lit. the cannon exploded with a charge that set both ships spinning. One of the warriors among Achilles ship cast out a line and it took the strength of five men to haul Achilles back onto the deck. Achilles stood, supported by the warrior that cast the line. He stood motionless, surveying the other ship, or what was left of it. The side the pirates had stood in was nothing more than a floating piece of driftwood. The other side of the ship was on its side. Slowly sinking as it filled with water. Achilles could see no bodies, just the wrecked mass of the ship. Silently he turned around and slowly walked back to his cabin. Tomorrow he would discuss what needed to be done with his fighters. But for now he needed rest. “Land Ho!†a deep gruff voice boomed across the ship. The remaining fighters of Achilles crowded around the rails, each one trying to catch the first glimpse of the Northern Coast. Achilles stood on the roof of the cabins, peering closely at the rocky beach on the horizon, there seemed to be no sign of life but with Dranions you can never be too sure. After some time had passed Achilles spoke quietly to his fighters “everybody get low and lay on the deck, only five of us will stand around. If there is anyone trying to ambush us, they will get a nasty surpriseâ€. The coasts if Northern Dranion were foggy and the ship slowly came through it like a haunted wreck. Achilles leapt over the sides onto the rocks below, he signalled his fighters to follow suit, leaving behind three to watch the ship. Thirteen warriors against the Dranion Nation thought Achilles. Achilles and his fighters climbed stealthily over rocks, gorges and once an icy slope. One had been lost on the slope and the mood of mourning and regret was among the twelve fighters. They reached a clearing and Achilles halted the small party and gave the command to set up camp for a while. Achilles woke under the starlit sky. Nearby an owl hooted and somewhere in the distance a wolf howled. By the position of the moon Achilles guessed that the sun wasn’t due for another hour or so. A strained silence suddenly filled the air. Achilles felt uneasy, very slowly moving his hand he grabbed hold of the bow on the supply bags nearby and with his other hand slowly set an arrow on the string. He saw it, a pale green shape flashing between some rocks. Its fast, thought Achilles. He shuffled towards the end of the clearing and placed the bow silently on the floor. He untied the rope from around his waist and with the speed and skill of a master made a noose out of it. Crouching up and pressing his back against a nearby tree Achilles waited. A shape blurred past him and Achilles moved with the speed of a Striking snake. Looping the noose around the things neck he heaved and threw it against a tree. Quickly he moved around and placed his arm on the things neck. Pinning it to the tree. It spoke to him calmly “if my time has come I know that I died by the hand of Dranion scumâ€. Achilles released his arm from the man’s neck and grabbed him by the shoulders and spoke calmly, “ keep a civil tongue in your head. Can you not see we are against the Dranionâ€. The elf cocked a bemused eyebrow at Achilles “ if that is true then why does your ship bear the flag of the Dranion and your armour of a captain?†Achilles thought about that for a moment before speaking. “It is a long and dreadful tale my friendâ€. The elf considered before replying “wake your camp, you can come to our tribe lands then you will tell me this long and dreadful taleâ€. Achilles nodded and walked off to awaken the lumbering warriors, none of which were aware of what had taken place. A distant shout was heard as the Elf and Achilles with his fighters marched up a barely recognisable path. Achilles hand went to his sword hilt and the elf grabbed his shoulder reassuring him “it is just the scouts, they can spot any trespassers within miles†said the elf, with a hint of smugness in his voice. Moments later a squad of cavalry-elves broke through a corpse of trees in front of them. Achilles noted that the animals they rode where more like miniature rhinos fully armoured but fast with a sharpened horn on the base of their heads, those mounts were made for a weapon as well as a form of transport. “Stand down they are friends!†the elf shouted while raising his hands. The riders on the rhinos grounded to a halt mere inches away from the small band of fighters. One of the riders saw Achilles gazing at the mounts and rose in seat and baring his teeth, Achilles ignored the attempt to scare him by banging his shield against his breastplate and shouting his war cry, “FREINZAAASSS FUUURYYY!!!!â€. The rider visibly shook and the other riders made a circle around the Elf that had brought Achilles to them. The elf barked irritably “you fools I said they were friends!, now get out of my way!†he walked to Achilles and spoke quietly to him after a while Achilles nodded and the Elf nodded to two riders they obediently dismounted and the elf helped Achilles onto one. Then nimbly mounted himself. Achilles ordered his men to walk with the two riders and not to start trouble, a grunt from each of them was enough for Achilles, and turning his mount he followed the elf. The tribesman’s land was more than Achilles expected. The elves lived in tree’s, and no tress where cut or had ever been moved. The elves dwellings were between or in the trunks, each with amazing carvings and designs etched on each corner. “incredible†murmured Achilles. The Elf led them up a trunk and into the biggest room Achilles had ever seen. Inside was a throne room, with curtains of pure silk expertly attached to the boughs of the trees. The elf gestured for them to stay where they were, then he walked to the throne and with a sudden regal stiffness lowered himself into the golden throne. Immediately two guards materialised out of the surrounding and stood either side of the Elf. There spears crossing in front of him. “come my friendâ€, he beckoned Achilles over. Making sure he kept his hand away from his sword Achilles approached the throne. The guards seemed to grow stiller. “it is ok, let him come†said the elf to the guards. They immediately relaxed and Achilles walked until he was standing in front of the guards. “ as you can see I am no commoner, my name is Ranento the 4th, chief of the tribe Elkenwood. I would be pleased if you would tell me your name, even though I think I know who you are already. “my name is Achilles, I am from the town of Freinza. i am on a quest to liberate our lands from the Dranions. And how do you already know of me your excellencyâ€. Ranento cocked a bemused eyebrow at Achilles “please Achilles call me Ranento, and you are famous in this part of Dranion, the stories of how you vanquished a Dranion commander with your bare hands and freed some townsfolk singlehandedly from a Dranion raiding band in which you repaired a ship and single handed sunk another Dranion raiding ship.†Achilles wondered how anyone could know about any of those things save his fighters. Ranento continued “ you are a legend my friend. And I knew who you were by the armour you wear. They say it is the same colour as your blood.†Achilles unslung his pack and brought out a small bag, the same one he had taken from the chest in Raven Camp. He put it in his pocket before asking “Ranento, it is clear we share the same enemy, I ask a favour of you. My fighters and I are going to rise and army to conquer Dranicina, this land does not belong to those barbarians. Would you add your fighters to our number?†Ranento rubbed his chin and pondered for a few moments, “Achilles, I know you are a war legend, but even you could not conquer Dranicina, that is the heart of the Dranion Empire. All of the empires finest soldiers will be stationed there, and they would crush us before we reached the walls, therefore I refuse to go with you, my people are safe here. I would not put their lives in danger.†Achilles frowned, “then perhaps I can buy your soldiers from you.†Ranento stood up abruptly and his voice boomed “absolutely not! Achilles you are a good friend and a trusted comrade but to ask such a thing is an insult in my halls! Guards! Kill them all where they stand!†Achilles swiftly brought his shield crashing down on one guard’s neck, in the same instant knocking the guards spear into the others neck. “Turtle formation! Hold the doors!†Achilles bellowed to his fighters. The fighters obeyed instantly, easily dispatching the first few guards charging through the door they placed a row of shields in front of the entrance. Then with another row of shields behind them. Sharpened pikes where placed over the shields and spears shoved through any gaps. Behind them all the archers stood. Firing arrows over the heads of the shield and spearmen. Each one flying straight and true. Achilles took pride in his fighters, but his mind tried to think of something quickly. They needed the warriors from the tribe to add to his numbers, if he killed them all then there would be none left to aid him and his fighters may be injured or worse. Achilles saw a sudden movement and turned in time to see the end of a leg disappearing through a window. The window smashed into millions of fragments as Achilles shield easily broke the unique carved wooden frames. He found himself in an alleyway. A pang hit the back of his helmet and the pain lanced through him, more reflex then judgement his shield arm swung round and there was a sound like a hammer hitting old rotten meat. Grabbing the attacked swiftly he turned to see the shaking face of Ranento. “Please spare me my friend!†he begged pleadingly. Achilles lifted the Elf up and threw him against the wall and placed his sword tip against his throat. “Call of your guards and let them listen to me†Achilles rumbled deeply. Ranento took out an elven horn and blew five quick notes through it. Silence followed as the echo of the horn carried across the trees. Achilles paced up and down. His fighters clustered behind him, not one had been lost during the fight. In front of Achilles stood two hundred remaining elven fighters. Each disarmed and waiting on Achilles word. “Soldiers, I am sorry for the bloodshed seen today, I wish to talk peace with you now and I propose three options. Option one, you refuse to join our army and you will all be killed on the spotâ€. The warriors shuffled uncertainly, none wanting to speak out in case they were singled out. Achilles carried on “Option two, we leave you in peace and when we have conquered the Dranions we will come and slay every last breathing thing in this townâ€. “Or you can choose the last option and that is to join our army and fight to kick the barbarians out of our landsâ€. The warriors were silent for a long time, and then one voice shouted “hey I’m with Achilles, he isn’t trying to kill us, he is trying to unite us against our biggest threatâ€. More voices joined and many warriors moved and merged with Achilles fighters, soon every single warrior was standing with Achilles. Ranento ran forward, screaming “curse you Achilles, you do nothing but lead these people to their doom“. 200 green feathered arrows thudded into his body. So many that the body did not fall. It was propped up by the mass amounts of arrows that riddled him like a pincushion. The warriors cheered and Achilles charged through the forest. The warriors all running behind him. Well that's all there is to it so far, for anyone who actually read that, what do you guys think ~Ranea
  17. Another piece of writing from my clients, from a boy this time. What do you guys think? The tale of a thief His past he lived well A fathers murder theres a story to tell Swift and cunning rogue In death is his trait A contract mistaken of his father Led to his merciless fate In the dark streets of London Skills he was challenged to prove Beneath the sky filled with thunder He climbed the tower, walls o smooth O, poor Vastare Like a blindfolded fool Lethal as a python Heart like ice, cracked and cool Onto the balcony Vastare climbed Their the dim silohetee did stand pulling out his silver blade sliced his fathers back. mouth covered with a hand There the body did drop Vastare staring with glee With his foot, turned the corpse over His face grew white and in silence did flee Eyes filled with grief and water Ran did Vastare through the empty streets unto the pier was his goal onlookers through windows gasped in there seats With a chain and lead he fastened his waist To his families name he had disgraced With a final breath he jumped into the depths Reuiniting with his father, to which he had been forgave ~Ranea
  18. I love writing, but I am never organized about it. I want to one day make a webcomic or two, but it seems I never know where to start. So here I ask: How do you start writing a story and keep it up? How do you organize it so you don't forget important things? Can you recommend any resources (books, tutorials, etc.) to help me out?