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Lily
February 11th, 2005, 06:29 PM
They were just her childish fantasies.

A realistic imagination.

But she didnt care.

Origami it was called, for the girl called herself that. Newly christened Origami sifted through the square sheets of paper, folding odd arrangements at the corners periodically until she had found a shape. And then there was that challenge of making that shape into a more complex figure.

She paused for a moment, thinking.

Yes, a challenge.

The challenge blended easily with the atmosphere, balmy flakes of transparent white disseminated against the ground. She knew it was cold, for her fingers were numb as they folded another corner. And the girl stared, marveling for a short while. In a way, she envied the paper. It had no worries and did not feel anything. With simplicity it was capable of turning into an ethereal creature composed of beauty.

Origami simply liked paper.

The paper was such a mystifying thing. She had seen their lustrous, silky form everywhere. People walked by quietly, the world but a blur to them. They never noticed them, but she did. It was like the sidewalk. Everyone used it, but most would not care. It was as if a unit of the human mind urged them to think of daily needs as unobtrusive forms of existence. If they used it, then that was that. Nothing more.

She was enthralled by the fact one sheet of paper could be made into a creature. Her hands shivered slightly, folding another corner. Then another.

It was a pattern.

Her young mind digested this easily. It was just a pattern, nothing more. She could fold one end, and then another, before both of them were folded. And then it would repeat. It would not repeat infinitely, but just until it had found a definite shape. Sometimes, it turned out wrong. Origami knew what happened to paper that turned out wrong. She had seen people curl them up into small crinkling balls and throw it away, and she had ambivalently decided to keep her papers rather than throwing them away.

A stack of new paper would be there as a prerequisite. She would automatically take one without much of astuteness. Origami folded again until she revealed a concealed shape. What would it turn into though? She had not thought about that, and a shape could have varied into multiple possibilities. Time would only tell.

Day after day, she folded assortments of papers. They shaped themselves into amusing imaginary creatures. Some transformed completely, when some seemed utterly insignificant. Origami was proud of her accomplishments.

She had made.

On her palm rested a creature. It had been folded out of vibrant yellow, with two obsidian beads serving as the eyes.

It was called Pikachu.

School had not been so pleasant and considerate with her creation. The kids would have never understood what she had made. One of them would jeer, and perhaps laugh, pointing haughtily at the unassertive figure lying on Origamis hand.

Its just a stupid paper

Ignoring them was difficult. Her fingers would grow clammy as they gripped the Pikachu hard and furiously, scrunching up the impeccable posture she had made and finished off with the perfect amount of flourish.

And then, she would run home.

Home was a place of her own sanctuary. It was a necessity of her life. Home was where she could quietly dwell in her own room, fixing the creation she had deliberately messed up, casting an apologetic look at the pitiful creature. Home was simply that- home.

Origami would then start again. Slowly, not quite working up to her average speed, another shape would be made. This one would be familiar to her Pikachu, but a more advanced form. She would make it grow. She would make it change. It would be a duskier hue of orange, yet quite easy to detect the simplicity put behind it. First impressions did wonders. She could glue on two black beads, and people would automatically assume it was a childs toy. But Origami contradicted this with hasty assumptions of her own.

They were not simple play things. They were her.

One day, Origami would show her school. She would make all the creatures, all of them, out of what she liked best- paper. Transformation would not take long. Her fingers worked steadily, somehow finding the hidden, defiant shape. The shape would not take very long either, depending on its persistency. The children would be awed. They would be stunned by the miraculous changes.

They would like it, all of them.

One hundred and fifty.

That was the number Origami had slowly counted. One hundred and fifty creatures staring back at her. Her eyes traveled over to the cobalt one with a spiral on its shell, all the way to the small pink one, then finally to the yellow mouse. She was happy. This, she had decided, was true happiness and the pride of her accomplishments.

Happy

The snow was not much of a threat as she trudged down the icy street. Snugly fit behind her arms was a cardboard box, a shoe box to be exact, swelling up her heart. Flying besides her were the snow patched newspapers, damp and abandoned. They screamed the same perpetual articles and headlines. She was oblivious to the news.

To think school had changed was a lie. It was still dissatisfied. An older boy would reject it with a simple gesture of a hand. He would take one glance at it, and mutter something vaguely along the lines as whatever. The younger children would forget about their usual taunting, and nod thoughtfully at the new word. They would try it out slowly, almost excitedly, on their eager tongues.

Whatever

It sounded so bold, audaciously coming out in the open. It was what they could say to push one idea they disliked away. It was simply new to them, to be exposed to a word with more than five letters for once. They would giggle, laugh at the sheer stupidity perhaps, but they would not know.

Origami would again, run towards home, but not quite go inside.

Home merely gave off the essence of reassurance. It gave her somewhere to be, but it did not require her to go in there at all times. It was just there, an inconspicuous background of her life, just not an entirely faded part yet.

She rummaged around her pocket. In it was a crinkled piece of paper. Just vaguely she could make out the faded scarlet, for the color had already been blended into an amalgam of pink. The feathery snow melted quickly on the paper Origami was clutching. She took a brief glance at it, and turned her attention to the precious box safe from the dampness.

One hundred fifty.

Her steps disappeared as they echoed down the alley with obscurity. Silhouettes danced off the walls, creating illusions with the snow. She sat down against the fortification, pulling out the box. There were one hundred and fifty figures crouched in there, cold and frigid as she was. Her frozen breath came out in spontaneous puffs of smoke as her fingers quickly began folding.

The shape didnt come too slowly this time. It was as if fate was waiting. It was simple to figure out, like how it was obvious to know the weather was cold. Already her eyes could see, they could imagine, the creature. It looked vaguely like a cat, but more of a significant aura.

One hundred fifty one.

All of them stared proudly at her from their own little sanctuary. The cat did not have any facial expressions, but they would have, if only she had some spare beads. The girl smiled. She would have shown someone, anyone. But there was no one. Perhaps she was being too presumptuous about these things.

Her bare fingers carefully scraped away the top layer of cracked, raw ice. The powdery snow came off easily, collaborating against the abstract of subdued blue. Beneath it was dirt, in which she kept scraping away. Satisfied by the small hole, Origami carefully inserted the box in, opening the lid one more time.

All one hundred fifty one paper figures sat there with their blank faces. They huddled and endured the winds malevolent tone weaving through the alley. They were waiting.

Origamis smile lingered. She carefully closed the lid, and quickly brushed the dirt and fragments of snowflakes on top of it. It would be as if nothing was there in the first place.

And then, she sat down next to it, tired from the effort given.

Particles of white descended from the thin sheet of azure and fragile slices of silver occasionally streaking across the sky, creating the tints of opaque. The clouds were nothing but amorphous hues of gray, compared to the preponderate sky. It showed such a whimsical combination. She could only gaze and admire the imperceptible merge.

Perhaps she would fold more papers in the future. Perhaps someone would find a hidden box, tucked away underneath the deep, crumbling earth. Origami shrugged once at the possibility, and stood up.

Taking one final glance at the lonely patch of snow, she started walking away, unaware of two heavenly cerulean eyes peering at her intently from behind, the resemblance vaguely similar as of ordinary blue beads.

Origami

Pidgeot500
February 12th, 2005, 05:59 PM
Excellent, really just excellent.
With the narration, often it's like she's thinking about herself without realizing that she is herself... maybe you know what I mean.
Great finish.
Edit: Also, I decided to look up astuteness--I was pretty sure it was a word but thought there might be another one--and found this (http://www.dict.org/bin/Dict?Form=Dict2&Database=*&Query=perspicacity); you might want to check it out, unless you already know and use it.

SilverBlaze09
February 13th, 2005, 12:49 PM
Not as much plot as I'm used to(fics with chapters in the hundreds can do that to ya), but it creams everything I've seen in depth. I've seen a few stories like this, and I can assure you that it is a fine, fine line between "good" and "bad" in this kind of writing. You have managed to tread the wire all the way through, though. I enjoyed this, LP, you definetely chose wisely in making this a one-shot. The grammar was good, spelling was good, and it was enjoyable. SB

Geometric-sama
February 15th, 2005, 10:16 PM
Content: A very original concept, well-executed. Although it doesn't really move in terms of action, it remains fresh throughout, which is a good sign - not every story has to have action. For such a young writer, your depth of understanding is commendable, Lily ^^

Language: Spelling is excellent. There are several little "niggles" with grammar; if you'd like, I can go through them one by one, but I don't feel that I need to - you know what to do, and I'm sure if you go through you'll find the bits. Keep in mind placement of commas - I know people try to avoid putting in too many, but you've missed out quite a few. In terms of the language itself, it seems like you're trying to write just a little bit too 'old' and the feel of the words is a touch archaic - it does stagnate a little sometimes. You don't need to use complicated words all the time - sometimes simplicity will suffice. Be careful with your use of adjectives and adverbs - while it's good to paint a picture, don't overuse them. Try to avoid multiple adverbs in one sentence - especially single-clause sentences - at least the ones ending with 'ly'. You can change the verbs instead. For example:

The feathery snow melted quickly on the paper Origami was holding tightly.

Instead of using both 'quickly' and 'tightly', you could try something like

The feathery snow melted quickly on the paper Origami was clutching.

'Clutching' gives you that same meaning of 'holding tightly' without the need to resort to an extra adverb. Just a minor point there.

Also, think about how many times you use the same word in a sentence, and whether it's really necessary - unless you are looking for a certain effect from repetition.

fixing up the creation she had deliberately messed up

could easily become

fixing the creation she had deliberately messed up

Don't forget that it's best not to start a sentence with the word 'but', as it's technically incorrect and while it's generally accepted today, it often does break the flow.

Last thing - I see you're using "its'". At least you're not using "it's" for the possessive, but it should be just "its" with no '. Odd but true. ^^

Altogether, this is a well-written fanfic with some excellent points, but would benefit from an edit-through... 8.5/10 from me.