Thread: [Pokémon] White Heart Black Bones [PG-14]
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Old December 1st, 2011 (1:53 PM). Edited December 1st, 2011 by icomeanon6.
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icomeanon6 icomeanon6 is offline
It's "I Come Anon"
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Do I see that this is your first post? If no one else has done so, let me be the first to say Welcome to PC and the FF&W forum! And good news: this chapter makes a pretty good first impression in my opinion.

I really like the idea of starting the story with the hero character losing the climactic showdown to save the world. I don't recall ever seeing that in a story around here, or anywhere else for that matter, so you get a gold star right off the bat. You've also done a good job of showing the effect the loss of the battle and more importantly the loss of her team has had on Touko. The opening dream did a good job of setting up her state for the rest of the chapter.

Another thing I felt was done really well was the sense of scale for the settings. The description gave me a clear picture of both what the places looked like and especially how Touko reacted to them emotionally. The image of the extravagant, toy-filled, circular room miles above the rest of the world is a fascinating one.

Also fascinating is your portrayal of N, but I'm still not sure how I feel about him overall. I haven't played Black or White, so I can't say much about what these characters should be like canonically, but your N's sheer creepy-man-child factor made me cringe. Having to share a bed with that weirdo for a month should be enough to give Touko nightmares, so she must be pretty shattered to actually prefer his company. Mind if I ask what their ages are? Or do I not want to know? o_o Anyway, his presence made the whole chapter pretty unsettling, and I'd say mostly for positive effect. Mostly.

N-horrifyingness factor aside, my only real complain is that the writing feels a little unpolished throughout. The language and description are rich, but I think you could stand to give it another read-over for corrections and to smooth things out. For example, towards the end you have:

Instead I tried to feign slumber and pretend that I was asleep.
This is redundant. If she's feigning slumber, that means she's pretending to be asleep. Also, this sentence made set off my writing style alarm:

His eyes were almost hidden under the brim of his black hat, but I still saw the sadness and regret emanating from those gray orbs.
This is more my personal taste, but it goes against my grain when writers describe a character's eyes as "<color> orbs." It's kind of a red flag for purple prose (overly flowery writing), and I see it way too often. I'm not saying that your prose is purple, but it's something to be wary of.

There were some grammar issues too, and I don't have time to dig into that, but here's one that a lot of people mess up and is hard to spot:

His jaw was set and his lips were pressed tightly together, as if he was in pain.
This is written as a hypothetical, so you need the subjunctive case: "as if he were." Now, since the story is in first person, it could just be that Touko doesn't have perfect grammar, but I recommend changing it.

Little stumbles aside, I really enjoyed your first chapter. It's an intriguing beginning, and I'm looking forward to learning more about Touko and seeing what's going to happen to the world in the wake of the bad guy's victory. Nicely done!


Forgot to mention: I'm assuming the three-headed dragon is Hydreigon, and it doesn't look to me like they have lips. I'd find another way to word that.
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