Mar 26 2012

LeFlamel’s Review Forum

Published by at 11:24 pm under Review Forums

LF: “I have a protagonist motivated by revenge, an antagonist trying to better society, and a Master Mind manipulating them both because of romance.”

5 responses so far

5 Responses to “LeFlamel’s Review Forum”

  1. LeFlamelon 05 Apr 2012 at 6:48 am

    This is the original prologue for Avenger Chronicles, I’ve since planned on debunking it because the main character had to undergo a remodeling because he was WAY too powerful for the story to be interesting. But would much appreciate any insight on the nature of my writing, things I need to improve on etc. R&R!
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    Blood. That was what Hikaru was reminded of by the intense hue of the setting sun. Hidden atop a tall coniferous tree, the black-clad figure could only wonder if the sky was prescient as he waited for nightfall. Below him activity was abuzz; through the black, broken branches Hikaru could make out his targets as they returned en masse to their camp. Returning with their catch of the day, the bandits were in relatively joyous spirits, an emotion counterbalanced by the cries of anguish emanating from their captives. The prisoners, composed mostly of young women, were to be sold as cheap slaves and prostitutes – a practice banned by the law of commoners, but the widespread corruption as of late made it impossible for the local Soldiers to stamp out injustice.
    That was why Black Brigadier Runemage Hikaru Kalikio was assigned to his current task. Not only were the Soldiers swamped with the rise in crime associated with the rebellion from almost two decades ago, Hikaru’s master, Runemaster Asmund Vendis, assigned Hikaru to assist the sorely understaffed Regis Army. Having spent his entire life studying and applying the ancient art of Runology, Hikaru’s latest mission would be an ample field-test of his abilities, the Runemaster thought. In short, it was Hikaru’s Runemaster initiation exam.
    Hikaru continued to watch as the prisoners were rounded up into makeshift wooden cells designed to function as transport carriages. One rather obstinate brunette, aggravated by the callous treatment of her fellow prisoners, as well as the equally offensive sexual harassment directed her way by a slow looking bandit, leaped out and bit the man’s throat viciously. The man screamed as he tore her jaw from his now bloody neck.
    His interest finally perked, Hikaru activated his Sense Rune. His left shoulder tightened as it burned his Mana, his life-force, but it awakened Hikaru to everything. Every sound and smell was heightened beyond the perception of most dogs. The magnitude of the sounds he heard was overwhelming; the crackling of wood in the campfires, the pulverization of dead leaves beneath heavy boots and bare feet alike, and even the cacophony of the evening insects drilled painfully into his inner ear. Focusing his control over the Sense Rune however, Hikaru tuned out the unnecessary noise, filtering only the conversation between the prisoner and her now heavily bleeding harasser.
    “Bloody wench!” the skinny bandit exclaimed, “you’re just lucky we’ve been ordered not to kill you.”
    “I hope you bleed to death!” she screamed defiantly. “We’re people not game!” The bandit clasped the young woman’s face in his hand and pulled it close to his, separated only by wooden bars.
    “Just wait deary,” he said mockingly, “I’ll make sure you get sold off to the most hideous, boil-ridden, flea-mongering peasant we can find-” The man, like everyone else in the camp, was silenced by the sudden extinguishing of their campfires. Darkness consumed the camp as the bandits shouted at each other to find the cause. The cause was in fact Hikaru. When the bandits had left their encampment to loot, he infiltrated it, killing and hiding the few guards left to maintain the site. He altered the campfires by placing a Runed parchment atop it. The parchments melted and bonded with the firewood, imbuing it with his scripted commands. The command was his signal: the fires would go out with the sun.
    Releasing the flow of Mana from his Friction Rune, Hikaru, having detached his arm from the smooth bark, fell from his vantage point among the trees. Wind and branches tore at his clothes and armor, and a particularly adamant twig cut his cheek. Ignoring the twinging pain, the young Brigadier redirected his energy into the Strength Rune carved into his back, allowing him to absorb the shock from a fall that would kill most men, as well as the Silence Rune upon his ankles. He quickly withdrew the longsword sheathed upon his back; the only sound anyone heard was the gushing torrent of blood that emerged from his first victim.
    At that moment, chaos ensued. The captives screamed, their pitch tormenting Hikaru’s heightened senses. The bandits barked orders at each other, their voices strained by simultaneous fear and anger. All were blind with the exception of Hikaru, an advantage that he exploited to its fullest. He soundlessly dashed across the camping ground, felling man after man with the trained precision of an executioner. One bandit, presumed the leader by his don of skulls, feathers, and other trinkets from victories past, finally succeeded in lighting an impromptu torch. The light caught Hikaru as he beheaded another unwitting bandit.
    A silence as inaudible as Death himself fell across the bivouac. Hikaru stood, basking in the firelight, clad in his uniform red tunic and pitch-black armored plates. His straight, jet-black hair clung loosely to his face, unable to conceal the piercingly blue eyes resting above the muffling scarf hiding the lower half of his visage. The tail of his scarf, much like the tattered remains of a black cloak hanging from his belt, were tossed to and fro by the bitter, cold winds. Blood dripped from the tip of his moonlit blade like vermilion tears.
    The bandit leader’s face was contorted with agony as he examined the dozens of corpses strewn about their stomping grounds. His remaining subordinates were paralyzed; legs shivering uncontrollably, blades vibrating out of poise. A turn or twitch made by the black knight summoned exaggerated reactions from them, many were already prepared to flee. The onset of the black warrior struck fear into the hearts of all his subordinates, and for good reason. The man before them was a Black Brigadier, one of the kingdom’s finest, elite, Magic-wielding covert warriors. Without Magic, they were completely outclassed; maybe, if the bandits were at all aware of the significance of the black armor, they would not have been slaughtered.
    “Kill him!” the leader shouted without a hint of fear. His subordinates replied to his battle cry with the force of numbers, and charged upon the Brigadier. Hikaru promptly entered his fighting stance, drawing upon the Runes inscribed across his flesh to heighten his senses, reflexes, and strength. In seconds the bandits surrounded his position; the torch’s irregular light proved to be their downfall. With swift strokes, Hikaru mutilated the first unaware assailant when the wind temporarily extinguished the leader’s torch. Blades spiraled towards Hikaru’s position, but with his enhancements, he saw them at the speed of a lazy fly swatter on a hot day. He quickly found the gap in their coordinated strike, and countered by spinning counter-clockwise, his blade disarming three bandits and the back of his heel incapacitating three more.
    Amidst the flurry of blades Hikaru moved like an elegant dancer, stopping at no point save to avoid a shortsword thrust forth to impale his cheek. He hacked off legs and perforated bandits, escaping each slash against him with calculated skill and precision. After felling nearly thirty, the last bandit fell to his knees in shock, tearing up at the eyes and scrabbling away at the ground to create distance between himself and the demon in black armor. As Hikaru approached him, it turned out to be the sexual aggressor from earlier.
    Flailing his arms in front of his face, the bandit whimpered pathetically, “stop! Please! I’ll give you whatever you want – just let me live!” Hikaru walked past the bandit without even a glance at him. As if spared from the guillotine, the bandit exhaled in relief.
    “Gutless scum like you don’t even merit to be killed,” Hikaru said in passing, “if you can’t even fight for your allies.” Hikaru’s words struck deeply at the heart of the short bandit. As Hikaru pressed forward, he could faintly hear the sobs of a man who had just lost everything.
    The chief bandit had dropped his torch, setting ablaze the woods around him. Hikaru hadn’t noticed the release of the prisoners, and so the bandit king fled among the ensuing disorder of the fleeing prisoners. Pushing aside the hoi polloi, Hikaru hunted down the fleeing bandit as the wildfire consumed more and more of the forest, almost seeming to follow him into the thick of it. The leader’s boots were simple to follow with the Sense Rune, even above the roar of the blazing forest around him.
    “Here you are,” Hikaru said, having finally cornered the bandit king at the forest’s cliff edge. The bandit, panicked beyond concealment, surrendered his attempts to escape and turned. In his left arm was a hostage, the woman who had previously bitten her harasser; in his right, a cutlass held up against her throat. Despite his disbelief at the entire situation, Hikaru casually walked towards his final target.
    “Stop where you are!” the panicked bandit shouted. “Take another step and I’ll slit her throat.” Hikaru continued walking, seemingly deaf to the aforementioned threat. The hostage, barely holding on to consciousness as the bandit king pressured her windpipe with his bicep, faintly called out for help.
    “I’ll do it – I’m serious!” he said, but the threats held no sway over Hikaru. Realizing this, the bandit king shoved his hostage towards Hikaru. At such close range, Hikaru was caught off guard as the captive accelerated towards him. His augmented senses perceived the bandit king’s follow-through attack; the felon was going to strike through the prisoner to assail Hikaru. Hikaru’s dilated sense of time allowed him to view the trail of glistening tears streaming from the woman’s face, and he knew that there was only one thing he could do.
    Strafing beside the human projectile, Hikaru countered with the bandit king’s own strategy. With his full strength he slashed horizontally, audibly ripping through the air. A silence permeated the forest. Blood gushed forth, and two decapitated heads tumbled to the floor. Undaunted, Hikaru swung his sword ritualistically, shaking off the blood of the corpses behind him, and sheathed it effortlessly. His mission was complete.

  2. LeFlamelon 05 Apr 2012 at 6:55 am

    eh. that looked better before posting. click on the link in my nametag for the site itself.

  3. Marquison 05 Apr 2012 at 5:25 pm

    I like this I was really into it.

    A couple of problems: Hikaru uses runes to activate certain powers and abilitys. He doesn’t seem to be powerful at all by himself and the runes themselves could be more distinct. There seems to be a rune for everything. For example when Hikaru activates a rune that makes him silent, and activating a rune that heightens his senses. Certain limitations should apply. What’s stopping him from activating as his runes to slaughter any tough opponent. He still seems largely overpowered.

    I love heartless characters, characters that just don’t seem to care. In fact at the end when beheads the slave and the bandit leader I said out loud to myself in shock ” He killed that girl!!!”

    I don’t know if you’re planning to but you definitely should tell why he’s like that,heartless.

  4. Marquison 05 Apr 2012 at 5:26 pm

    Also you should describe a bit more about what rune are and how they work.

  5. LeFlamelon 08 Apr 2012 at 8:25 am

    Thanks I’m working on pushing out a rewrite to his character (as well as most other characters, I characterize somewhat unrealistically :/) especially power-wise, but to keep his heartlessness. And oh yes 🙂 I’m planning on showing the reasons for that as well, which should be more compelling if I rewrite his Mentor relationship so it’s not all warm-n-fuzzy surrogate father love.

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